The 13 Things You Never Want Have In Your Pants

…#6: Weasels!

A Call For Suggestions

Gentle Readers,

I need your help with the Doclopedia. In a couple of months, I want to do between 30 and 60 posts on the theme of “Subject Line Madness”, in which each entry will expand upon some of the nearly 2,000 (actually, by then, over 2,000) subject lines/titles I’ve used on my blogs over the last 8 years. Back on Live Journal (before it went down the tubes) I used to do annual Subject Line recaps every January.

Here is where you can find them in the archives…

2004 Subject Lines: Jan 8 & 9, 2005

2005 Subject Lines: Jan 1, 2006

2006 Subject Lines: Jan 4-8, 2007

2007 Subject Lines: Jan 5, 2008

2008 Subject Lines: Jan 22nd, 24th & 26th, 2009

2009 Subject Lines: Jan, 1-3, 2010

I didn’t do recaps for 2010 or 2011, so you can either search by month, wait for the list for those years or say screw it and just look through the lists above. Do note that these recaps contain my comments on the subject lines, so you might get caught up reading them.

Any suggestions I choose to use will get the name of the suggester prominently displayed on the post.

Thanks a bunch, folks.

Your Humble Author

 

After The Change Came: Series 2

Sin And So Long For Now

Ok, my friends, it’s time to bring this blog to an end for now. I’ve got about fifty million things to do before my month in Wizard time and I’ll be lucky to get half of them finished in time. Beyond the Wizard painting gig, Uncle Sin has been invited to accompany a lady friend on an extended European tour, so that will eat up another 6 months or so. Of course, I’ll pop back from Europe for the wedding of Avis & Daniel, but there won’t be any more blogging from me until maybe next winter.

Just to update everybody, Grace and the twins are doing great. Doc wanders around with a goofyass grin on his face all the time and Lily has gone into “OMG, the twins are SO cute!” mode. Actually, so have Roscoe & GiGi and most of the rest of the family & friends.

Speaking of Roscoe, he has made vague reference to doing some blogging of his own, so you may see him taking up the duties here after the puppies are a few months older. Right now, he has his paws full just keeping them from running Gigi ragged.

Well, it has been great fun blogging at you all and I hope to do more somewhere down the line, Until we meet again, good luck and keep your stockings straight.

 

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Is That A Mark III Thermo Unit In Your Pocket, Or Are You Just Glad To See Me?

…oh my, it’s armed!

The Doclopedia #409

The Alphabet, Again: F is for… Fingers Of Hell

The Fingers of Hell first appeared on one of the magic based Earths just after a great war had begun. Extending up out of the ground, they were five 1 mile long writing columns of what looked like smoke and magma. From these fingers poured hundreds of man sized demons that proceeded to wreak havoc on all of the armies fighting in the war.

The destruction was terrible and just seeing it drove many soldiers mad. To this day, 300 years later, the written reports on the atrocities committed that day are sealed and locked away to protect anyone from reading them.

Since their initial appearance, the Fingers of Hell have been seen a dozen or so times around the world, almost always at sites of armed conflict. One of the few non-conflict related times was the day the wicked and cruel city of Drohar was reduced to rubble in a matter of hours. Not a single person in the city survived and now, almost nobody will go within 5 miles of the ruins. Among those who do dare to go closer, sightings of huge “things” in the area are commonplace, as are the regularly heard sound of screams.

Scholars and Wizards have many theories about the Fingers of Hell, but perhaps not surprisingly, none of these theories have ever been tested.

The Doclopedia #410

The Alphabet, Again: F is for… Filby, The Happy Marmot

With a name like Filby, The Happy Marmot, you’d think this was some kid oriented series of books. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Filby books, while set in a world of talking animals, are gritty thrillers full of suspense, sex, violence and intrigue. Filby has an average kill rate of 21.5 victims per novel. He has sex, often of the more kinky variety, 4.75 times per book.

There have been 14 novels so far and 5 of them have been made into movies. Rather than try to train real animals, the movies use CGI placed into real locations. All of these movies are rated R.

After The Change Came: Series 2

 

Sin And The Freakin’ Heart Attack!

OMG! OMG! OM FREAKIN’ G! Grace had the twins early! On purpose! There were injuries and near heart attacks and I broke a nail! O. M. G.!!!

Let me backtrack here and tell you that about 4 months ago, Grace gave all of their family and friends an enchantment on our right hand that would, when labor began, announce that the babies were coming. It also gave us a one way Wizard Portal to their house. Great, fine, the babies were supposed to be born on Valentines Day, so we all figured the hand thing was pretty redundant. We all knew February 14th was the big day.

Which will explain why, when my hand began saying “Sin, wake up, the babies are on the way” in my own voice at 3:15 this morning, I flew out of bed yelling “what the fuck?”. Babe was equally excited and we both sort of ran about aimlessly for a minute of two before I grabbed my robe, picked up Babe, summoned the Portal and stepped trough to Chez Cross.

A fair number of other folks were there already. Avis was in her jammies and telling Daniel to hold an ice pack to the eye that she had elbowed when she came flying up out of a sound sleep. Roscoe, never one for waking up early or suddenly, was limping on a sore paw he got from stepping on a puppy toy. Spike and Mary had bumps where they had banged foreheads. Outside, Doc’s sister Rosie, who is a Giant, had some bruises from tripping over a boulder. Lily looked like she might jump out of her skin, which was covered with a bad case of bed hair.

In less than five minutes, the house and yards were full of people. There were also 9,999 Green women standing in circles around the house, chanting something in what Grace calls Gaiaspeak. The Green Ladies seemed to be the only ones not asking what the hell was going on. Well, that’s not true. The two grandmothers weren’t, having been trough the birth thing many times before.

Doc came out of the birthing room/greenhouse to give us all the straight skinny, which was pretty nice of him what with that black eye, cut lip and sprained ankle he had. Also, Doc right after a sudden and near coronary inducing wake up? Not a pretty sight, my friends.

It turns out that the day before, Grace had decided that the whole planned delivery thing just wasn’t right. Not traditional enough, she figured, so she went into labor at fuck all early in the morning instead.

I love Grace like a sister, but…shit!

Anyway, Ben and Annie, the greatest house elves on earth, appeared with coffee, tea and other beverages that we all gulped down. Then came pastries and other goodies that were suitable for about a dozen races and twenty species. We ate and waited.

After about ten minutes, a few of us were asked to go into the birthing room. The greenhouse is big enough for largish trees, and there in the middle of three of them was Grace on a hammock chair sort of thing looking radiant. No, really, she was glowing green like a 500 watt bulb. She thanked us (Doc, Avis, the grandparents, Lily, Roscoe, a young Green Lady In Waiting and I) and then said “ok, let’s do this!”.

Fastest. Birth. Ever! 4 minutes, 19 seconds from start to finish. The GLIW basically caught the babies and the grandma’s cleaned ’em up and handed them to Doc & Grace.

They are beautiful. BEAUTIFUL! Everyone was crying and congratulating Grace and Doc and looking at the babies and, well, all the usual stuff.

The girl is a Green Lady In Waiting and the boy, like his papa, is a mutant. Purple eyes, sky blue hair and perhaps just a babyish touch of blue skin.

Some minutes of oohing & awwing later, Grace said it was naming time and she called forth the Naming Officials. The male half of the team was Wizard Robotix, no real surprise there, since Grace and Doc have known him for near half a century.

The female half? Oh, she wasn’t A surprise, she was THE surprise. As in, an hour later there was damned little else discussed on the internet here on Earth or out in space.

It was the Faerie Queen! The heretofore never seen, pretty much believed to be mythical FAERIE QUEEN! She was all of 6 inches tall and quite beautiful. She was glowing as brightly as Grace, but in a rainbow manner. You could feel the waves of Faerie magic coming off of her. It was pretty damned cool.

Except for Grace and the Wizard, everybody else was stunned into jaw dropped to the floor silence. Silence that was finally broken by Doc saying “Well slap my ass and call me Spanky”.

SIGH…Doc, you can dress him up, but you can’t take him out.

Greetings were given and then both the Wizard and the FQ gave a short speech, after which names were bestowed.

The boy? William Avy Cross. Yes, middle name from Avis.

The girl? Ginger Sindell Cross. This is me, blubbering like a child.

Then the Wizard and the FQ took Avis and I aside and gave us the twins True Names, which only apply to Wizards, Faeries and the Blessed. Which is what happened next. Wizard blessings, by the way, are pretty funny and a bit goofy, as befits Wizards. Faerie blessings are more majestic and magical and somber.

Once it was all over, there were congratulations, handshakes and Wizard Robotix said “Now let’s party!”

So I’m writing this from some humongous party dome in Wizard Time. There have to be three or four thousand people here, including every Wizard there is. Also hundreds of animals, most, but not all, Smart. And a gazillion Faeries. The viewing/greeting line for the babies is about 300 feet long. Everybody is half tanked and all of our wounds are healed. When this is over, I’m going to sleep for a week. Maybe two.

Welcome to this crazy world, Will and Gin.

True Tails Of The Winkerdog

…co-starring her sisters, Neurotic Nelly and Speedy McBarksalot

In Which I Prepare To Jump Into The Fire

As I’ve mentioned a few times over the interwebs, I’m going to have outpatient surgery on my fucked up left shoulder on March 7th. This will put me out of work for about 6 weeks, assuming I heal with my usual alacrity. I’d rather not miss the bulk of 6 weeks pay, but I also don’t want the fucked up shoulder, so there ya go.

Now, in the past 2-3 weeks, I’ve felt a slow unrest building. Not the “dump the wife for a sports car and 20 year old hottie” kind of unrest, which I couldn’t afford anyway, but a creative unrest coupled with a growing desire to open yet another chapter of my not lacking in chapters life.

In addition to all that, I recently turned 58 years old. That most likely puts me in the last third of my lifespan, barring some really cool technological advances. I figure with only 30 or so years left, I might as well jump. And this is what I want to do…

I want to do other things to make a living. I want to get away, if only partially, from hourly wage slavery. I want to let my inner artist, who works mostly with words but has in the past worked in clay and other materials, go loose in the world. He has some ideas which may or may not make much money, but would allow for having more fun and maybe make some people happy. Preferably in exchange for cash.

I’ve got a pretty bitchin’, yet not overly complex, idea for a novel told using mostly photographs.

I have an opening to do some game writing for pay, which I haven’t done in a while due to not liking most of the game systems out there.

I’m working out ways to pair some of my writing with some sculpting. This has some pretty good “make my fellow geeks and many women go SQUEE!” potential.

I think I’ve finally cracked how a guy with negative talent at drawing can do a pretty cool webcomic.

I have a shitload of glass jars just begging to be painted up and sold cheap to people who like knickknack.

I’ve got a fuckin’ green thumb that won’t quit and people just love buying fresh herbs.

To name but a few ideas in my head.

This is all pretty risky on several levels. I absolutely cannot risk much cash, but then, I don’t think I’ll need much to start out. I might also be risking a big upheaval of my normal routine, but that’s a risk that almost certainly has a 90% upside.

I may risk some interpersonal things, because when the creative madness grabs hold, I tend to get a bit odd to deal with. No, really, I mean odder than usual. Not surly or mean or anything, just not quite operating totally in this reality. My mind starts racing and I’m not thinking of the sorts of things ordinary humans think of.

The biggest risk is to my ego, which is Godzilla sized. Failure would be pretty damned unpleasant. On the other hand, it’s not like failure and I haven’t taken long hot showers together in the past, so I reckon I’ll just have to dive in and to hell with the outcome.

Anyway, once the first week or two of my post op is past, I’ll be a two armed tool user again and have a few weeks to give this all a shot. Also, the thought of not having to watch daytime television for 6 weeks is pretty fucking motivating if you want to start a new chapter in your life.

There it is, Gentle Readers, a bit of the old opening up. Thank you for indulging me as I got all of that out of my head and into the light of day.

I’ll do a Doclopedia post ASAP as a thank you gift:)

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After The Change Came: Series 2

 

Sin Is Where You Find Him

And today, that means you’ll find me at home being a total lazybones. Babe and I are just hanging out, eating whatever and watching all manner of things on the big screen monitor. Right now, that means the new steampunk series from the BBC “Solomon & Darke”, which is pretty damned great. I am loving those outfits on the Royal Air Service flygirls. Must look into getting one. Outfit, not flygirl. Well, okay, I’d take the flygirl, too.

After the steampunk, I think we’ll watch “Big Trouble In Middle Earth”, which is possibly the funniest movie I’ve ever seen aside from “Blazing Saddles”. Knowing that many of my gaming & fandom pals had bit parts in this low budget cinematic mashup makes it that much funnier.

Dinner tonight will be at Roscoe and GiGi’s house. Their house elf, Koko, is an excellent cook, so I’m looking forward to chowing down on his Jamaican specialties. Of course, playing with the puppies will also be big fun.

Late tonight, it’s going to be Creature Features time. Babe has never seen “Attack of the Mushroom People”, so this should be fun.

Oooh…look, a big bag of cookies! More blogging later.

Mr. Porkwaffle Sets Loose The Kraken

…no, really, it was his pet kraken, Oliver

TWO Doclopedia posts here, my little gyring & gimboling slithy toves! Might do two more later this evening!

The Doclopedia #402

The Alphabet, Again: C is for…Corn Man

Some superheroes are just not cut out for the big time. Corn Man is a prime example of this, since his very limited super powers only function when he is within a mile or so of large quantities of corn. This not only limits him to the American Midwest, it means that for part of the year, he is pretty well powerless unless he’s near a silo or maybe the Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota.

Even when he’s at full power, Corn Man can only do things like shoot dried corn kernels from his fingers, animate cornstalks and spit large globs of high fructose corn syrup. That last always ranks high on the list of Grossest Super Powers.

In addition to his limits in range and seasons, Corn Man is just plain goofy looking. His costume consists of a green and white spandex suit and a yellow mask/helmet that looks like an ear of corn. We won’t even get into describing the Cornmobile, which looks an awful lot like a heavily modified 1998 Honda Accord.

Despite his general of any real superhero mojo, Corn Man is very popular in the Midwest, especially at county and state fairs.

The Doclopedia #403

The Alphabet, Again: D is for…Dave Finlooper

I don’t know how it is on your world, but here on Earth 14, we love Dave Finlooper! I mean, come on, he’s the guy that invented the yPhone, wrote the “A Game of Barstools” series, taught an entire generation how to cook and enjoy duckburgers and founded the International Flooning League, to name but a few of his many accomplishments. My God, the man is nearly a saint!

He was born David Boris Finlooper to Andy and Iris Finlooper of Hackysack Falls, Minnesota on April 23rd, 1951. Dave was the fourth of 7 children and even as a small child, loved inventing and creating things. His first grade painting “A Dog In A Car”, recently sold for 6.5 million dollars at auction. His third grade English paper, “What I Did Over Christmas Break”, won a Pulitzer prize and has been made into a movie three times.

After graduating from college at age 12, Dave went into his home laboratory and did not come out for 3 weeks, at which point he had invented Glue On Hair, the supersonic bicycle and a cure for Itchy Butt Disease. Dave was on his way to billionaire status and multiple Nobel Prizes.

Wherever Dave goes, people cheer him and women offer him their bodies for his pleasure. He has not paid for a restaurant meal in 48 years and has not paid for a drink in 39 years. The United States government stopped taking his tax money in 1977. He gets free cable tv.

Yes indeed, Dave Finlooper is without a doubt the most famous and beloved man in the world.

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After The Change Came: Series 2

Sin And The Blast From The Past

Several things to report, sweeties. Uncle Sin has been a busy lad.

1: Doc’s birthday party was a hell of a good time and the Pellucidar game afterwards was probably among the top 5 roleplaying experiences of our lives, which is really saying something. I’d also like to say that Doc’s cousin Wendy brews up the tastiest Dream Draught I’ve ever had. Most of the time, Dream Draught tastes like a glass of mildly lemony spit, but Wendy knocked out something with a definite pina colada vibe. Yum!

2: My new hairdo looks great and I was so hot looking in my Michu dress that after the party and game, two young women were moved to bed me with extreme prejudice, bless their hearts.

3: I’ve gotten a commission to do portraits of several Wizards. This means big money, which will more than compensate for spending the bulk of March in Wizard Time.

4: When I get back from Wizard Time, I’ll be moving to a real house! It’s a cute little treehouse in one of the giant oaks that grow near the Ring Road not too far from where Doc & Grace live. Babe and I are very excited about it.

5: That blast from the past in the title? That would be my childhood friend Luke, who is out here on some business. We’re going out tonight for steaks, beer and reminiscing.

And now, I must go. More blogging soon!

A Poem About Dancing Elk

…because they deserve it

The Doclopedia #401

The Alphabet, Again
: C is for…Czinnlik

Czinnlik is a planet orbiting the binary star system Yarvax 9. Due to the two suns being rather small and not too hot, there is a rather large zone where planets can support life. Czinnlik is one of three planets in this zone and is by far the largest, measuring approximately 1.25 times the size of Earth.

Czinnlik has a nitrogen/oxygen atmosphere and is covered over 70% of its surface by shallow seas and swamps. Humans have settled near these swamps in order to grow and harvest giant swamp tulips, from which they make a powder called Oomroo Dust. This substance is then used to flavor a wide variety of foodstuffs on hundreds of worlds.

The next largest industry on Czinnlik is mining, which can only be done in the few ancient mountain ranges near the poles. The main elements mined are copper, silver and diamonds. The diamonds generally run large, 100 to 300 carats each.

The greatest hazard to human life on the planet has got to be the annual hatching of Giant Mudhoppers. Weighing in at around 1,500 each pounds at hatching, you do not want to be outside the domed cities when the hundreds of thousands of hatchlings migrate to the swamps from their dry land birthplace. Add in the fact that enormous flying Lizardbats eat the Giant Mudhoppers and you can see why humans stay in the domes for three weeks every spring.

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After The Change Came: Series 2

Sin On The Run

Just another quick post before I run out to start getting things ready for Doc’s birthday bash on Saturday (his actual birthday is on Sunday, the 29th). It will be a double whammy this year, with an afternoon foodfest attended by at least 90 people, then a most likely long evening of playing in an exclusive beta test of the new “Pellucidar” MMORPG. Doc and the rest of us are all cranked up about that because it’s a game that actually requires Dream Draught to enjoy, so it will be hyper-realistic. Oooh, just thinking about that upward curving horizon and all of those dinosaurs and primitive races makes me all goose pimply! Edgar Rice Burroughs was The Man!

In other news, I’m going to a new stylist tomorrow to get my hair cut, colored and styled. I’m told she’s very good. I’ve been a blond long enough. Time to be a sexy redhead for awhile! Not sure if I’ll get my nails done there or go to Rene, my usual nail lady. In clothing news, I’ll be wearing one of my new Michu outfits at the party on Sunday, so if you see me, you may want to stand way back, because I’ll be white hot, baby. I won’t be bringing a date, so it’s first come, first served, ladies

Must go now. More posts soon.

Cherry Flavored Fun In a Box

…just as good as the chocolate kind

The Doclopedia #399

The Alphabet, Again: C is for…Cogs

On Earth 52, where they just love to screw around with recombinant DNA, somebody decided to mix canine and feline genetic material. The result were cogs, part cat, part dog and all lovable…and infuriating…and goofy…and funny.

Cogs have all the needy pack oriented traits of dogs, but also the lonerish independent nature of cats. Basically, this gives them personalities not unlike the average human teenager. They have the unquenchable appetites of dogs, but the pickiness of cats, so their humans must buy large bags of several kinds of cog food.

Cogs really want to come when you call them, but they will only do it in a nonchalant “well, I was heading that way anyway” manner. They aren’t very good at climbing trees, but they are hell on catching everything from mice to wild goats, which they will then partially eat before leaving the corpse somewhere in your house.

Most cogs are about the size of a medium sized dog, but some get as large as Russian Wolfhounds. You need a really large litter box for them.

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After The Change Came: Series 2

Sin And Sin Again

Have any of you played in the new Dungeon Bash realm of Larkonia? There are at least four dungeons there and easily three times as many wilderness quests. Babe, Roscoe, Peter, Avis, Grace and I have formed a party and are way deep into the Forest Realm of the Octopus Men. It has been creepy and brutal so far. Thank goodness we have two druids with third circle healing spells, or we’d have been toast early on. Hopefully, our friends Spike and Miranda will be joining us soon.

Ok, Babe and I are heading out the door to go help bake bread and cookies at Chez Cross. More from blogland later.

Mashed Potato Volcano

…it erupts gravy

The Doclopedia #397

The Alphabet, Again
: B is for…Blue Reggie

On Steampunk Earth #6, a dangerous new drug has become popular among the citizens of England and, to a lesser degree, Europe. Going by the slang name of “Blue Reggie”, it unlocks the psychic centers of the brain and produces a euphoric state. The effects of the drug, which must be injected, last 2 to 3 hours. During this time, the user is incapable of moving due to muscle relaxation.

While under the effect of Blue Reggie, the user will unknowingly activate psychic powers. Most common among these are mind reading, telepathy and telekinesis. Telepathy and telekinesis have caused many problems, as exemplified by the Great Shared Nightmare that took place in York and the Flying Cobblestones incident in London on Christmas Day, 1882.

It is unknown where Blue Reggie originated, but it is almost certainly a product of Mad Science.

 

After The Change Came: Series 2

Sin And Old Yellow Eyes VS The Great Weerloo Army

Dear Readers, I meant to post this yesterday (Tuesday) but we got teleported just before I finished writing, as you’ll see by the abrupt ending. Enjoy it and know that the four of us are now clean, refreshed, well fed and at home.

Holy shit! HOLY SHIT! We just defeated 500 Weerloos in a heated battle! And some of them were a crazy Weerloo/Mountain Troll hybrid! My God, it was terrifying and exhilarating and I’m surprised that I don’t need to change my undies. I’m covered in blood and gore and I want to get really drunk, after I bathe for an hour or two.

So here’s the fast version of the story.

Monday morning, 2:00 am: Doc leaps out of bed and tells me that we need to get ready to leave RIGHT NOW! Although I use foul language in my response, a near lifetime of hanging out with him tells me to do as he says.

Monday morning, 2:30 am: While Doc & Rocky gallop off south of town, I arrange for a truck to haul the four of us to Interstate 5, which is 45 miles to the west of Chico. I then drink two cups of strong coffee and eat a sweet roll.

Monday morning, 3:30 am: Doc & Rocky return, winded and looking pissed off. After grabbing the 36 ounce mug of crazy strong oolong tea, Doc says “It’s Weerloos and something new and Weerlooish. Get in the truck.”

Monday morning, 4:30 am: Having paid the truck driver, we are all off of the truck and heading into the foothills of the Coast Range. We are following the very obvious trail of of Weerloos and the same big creatures that we found the tracks of earlier in our trip. They head straight west to where Doc tells me Long Valley lies. There is a lake there, no human habitation and a long flat valley just made for parking an army.

Monday morning, 8:00 am: We reach the top of the hills at the eastern edge of Long Valley. From our vantage point in the bushes, we see about 450 Weerloos, about 50 creatures that look like Weerloos if Weerloos were 7 feet tall and one human. He’s obviously a Mage and he’s obviously in charge. Doc and Rocky both growl. I cannot overstate how eerie and scary it is to hear a mule growl.

Monday morning, 10:00 am: We have retreated downhill to a well concealed spot in some trees. Doc has reached into his Bag of Expanded Capacity and pulled out a real Crystal Ball. In moments, he is in a trance, which means that he’s communicating with at least one Wizard. He’ll be like that for the next two hours,

The rest of Monday: We rest, eat and take turns watching the Weerloos. Sure enough, they are training just like an organized army. Doc identifies 9 different Clans, which makes this the largest Weerloo army ever. We both note that the big UberWeerloos must be part troll. I’m not feeling good about all this.

Today, just after sunrise: We are back on the hill overlooking the army. Doc takes a bunch of stuff out of his bag and gives each of us a small beeswax capsule filed with a blue liquid. One we have them in out mouths, he tells us not to bite them until he says to.

After that, he picks up an egg sized figurine of a wizard, then walks about 100 yards down the hill and yells “Hey, you scaly motherfuckers, listen up!”

Every eye in that army is looking at him. The conversation went like this…

Doc: “Under direction of the Council of Wizards, the United Nations, the North American Union, the United States of America, the State of California and me, the Taker of Tails & Teeth, you will all surrender right fucking now or get killed. Personally, I hope you don’t surrender.”

Mage (who is now only about 100 feet away from Doc): After a hearty laugh, says “I don’t think we’ll surrender. In fact, I think I’ll just fry you and your three friends where you stand.” He begins casting a spell.

Doc: “Not today, you little prick!” Doc then crushes the wizard figurine in his hand. Mage screams, falls down and you can actually see the power exit his body. Looking at the army, Doc asks “No more Mage for you. He’ll be powerless for the next week. Will you surrender, Eaters of Other People’s Fish?”

The response is to scream war cries and come rushing towards us.

Doc (to us): “Bite that wax and get ready to rock & roll!”

Like most magical potions, the liquid inside the wax capsules tasted like whatever it is nasty thinks tastes nasty. Thankfully, the taste only lasted a second and then we all started to change. We got bigger, more muscular and our clothing pretty much ripped apart. It was like turning into the Incredible Hulk, if he were some huge barbarian warrior. Or a Demon Mule from Hell, because Rocky and Belle were now bigger than Clydesdale horses and snorting smoke & fire. And there was bloodlust, oh yes there was! I wanted to lay waste to my enemies, to stand knee deep in their corpses and show them that Sindell the Barbarian was somebody to fear!

Just before the first giant Weerloo/Trolls arrived, Doc pulled a sword and a big ax out of his bag and tossed the sword to me. After that, shit was ON baby!

I won’t go into details, except to say that the Weerloo/Trolls were tough, many Weerloos tried unsuccessfully to run and you never ever want to have a Demon Mule from Hell after you. In the end, we left exactly one member of each Weerloo clan alive. All of them were too scared to move as Doc told them to return to their clans, tell them to expect visits from the Taker of Tails & Teeth and to never even think of grouping up with other clans or working with a human Mage, because if they did, well, Doc got very detailed about what would happen and it’s pretty gross. They all swore they would do as he said, then took off running like the devil was on their trail.

We went back to where the Mage was still passed out and Doc put a small coin on his forehead. In a blink, the Mage was gone, teleported to Wizard Central for punishment.

It took another 15 minutes before we all returned to normal, at which point, we all collapsed from exhaustion until Doc produced some Energy Elixir that revived us enough to start back to the freeway, where we would call for another truck that would take us back to Chico and civilized amenities.

We’re almost back to the freeway now and I must say that this has been a hell of an experience. Not one I ever want to repeat, but still, pretty singular. And now I want a bath, a bed and maybe a few stiff drinks.