Module Q-2: Lair Of The Rare Were-Bear

…for 6 to 10 adventurers of level 8-10

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Two (By Luke)

Hi there! Luke here, with your Day Two report, and what a day it was.

We all got up around 7 this morning and had a truly legendary breakfast provided by our KitchenBots, Julia, Jacques and Alton. No matter what species you are, the kitchen staff makes sure you have plenty to choose from. Misty and I had steak & kidney pie and some scrambled eggs.

After breakfast, Dad told us we had about an hour before we got to our first stop, so while the humans sat around drinking tea or coffee and chatting, we critters hit the Slide Room. Now that the room is about 4 times larger than before, there are long stretches where you can hit 75 miles an hour! There are also double helix loop de loops that will seriously test your ability to hold down the great breakfast you just had.

(Silky: Next time, let’s wait a couple of hours.)

(Janet: Or we could just go play in the Shoe Room.)

45 minutes of sliding was enough for everybody, so we went to join the humans to find out what Dad had chosen for our first stop.

That stop turned out to be The World Famous (you saw that one coming, right?) House of Doors.

(Leon: Well, at least it wasn’t the House Of Human Heads or Petrified Turds or some other crazy stuff.)

Yes, it’s a big Victorian house up on a hill just past the top of the Grapevine (that’s what they call Interstate 5 as it comes up over the mountains into the Los Angeles basin) and it is indeed constructed completely out of doors. Front doors, garage doors, interior doors, barn doors, security doors, sliding glass doors and even doggie doors. It looks goofy from the outside, but inside, it’s a pretty ordinary house. That was kind of a letdown, but you still had to admire the ingenuity of Rex Hollister, the guy who built the place back in 1966.

(Daisy: Why don’t these nutty humans build hospitals or orphanages instead of screwy houses?)


Once we were done buying the requisite bumper stickers and such, we all piled back into the Bus and headed into that strange and bizarre land known as Greater Los Angeles. We were about 90 minutes from our next stop, so Dad put on a movie from this Earth. It was “Monster X” (1948 RKO) and starred Boris Karloff as the good guy and Lon Chaney Jr as the deranged madman who gets infected by an ancient fungus and grows into a 15 foot tall monster that ravages Los Angeles. It ran 85 minutes and wasn’t a bad movie.

(Misty: I just love old monster movies!)

In a rather rare departure from Dad’s usual strange taste in roadside attractions, our second stop was the Museum of Television Costumes in Burbank. After paying the reasonable rate of five bucks per, we all went in and saw a ton of costumes. Most were pretty ordinary suits and dresses from the late 1940s to the present, but there were plenty of costumes from sci fi and fantasy shows, along with stuff from westerns and medical shows and other genre TV. We spent about an hour there.

Next up was a stop just 10 minutes away and it was another Giant Jesus. However, this Giant Jesus was strictly from Hollywood because he was all dressed up like some studio PR weasel. White suit, big smile, sunglasses and well styled hair, he could not have been more SoCal unless he had a surfboard.

(Silky: I thought Daddy would start crying when he saw it.)


The statue is 100 feet tall and very well built. An elevator can take 10 people up into the head to get a really great view of Griffith Park. Dad was very impressed and left a 20 buck donation on the way out. He even bought a little dashboard version of that Jesus and put it on the dashboard next to Mr. Spock and the 3rd Doctor.

(Max: That is high praise from Mister C.)

We didn’t drive too far when Dad stopped at Red and Ed’s BBQ Burger Joint. We got in just before the lunch rush and had some great burgers, fries and shakes.

(Goldie: Say what you will about humans, but dang, can they cook up great food!)

(Sasha: Dude, wait until we hit a Texas BBQ joint.)

As we were leaving, I’m pretty sure we boggled several people who saw 23 humans (all of us NHT were in human bodies) climb into a small ice cream truck.

(Penny: One lady dropped her milkshake.)

Our next stop was all the way out in Long Beach and since it was almost one o’clock, we needed to get out there ASAP. As usual, the combined minds of Dad, Sasha and our quantum mechanic, Joe, came up with the answer.

By now, most of you have at least seen the trailer for “Ant Man and The Wasp”, so you probably have an idea what happened next. Dad pulled a stickshift looking lever back and suddenly, the Bus was the size of a shoe box and rocketing along at 90 miles an hour. Thankfully, Mom did not find this out until we got to our destination. When she did find out the answer to “how did we get here so fast?” she was not amused.

(Sadie: “Not amused” is British level understatement.)

(Sasha: Yeah, she ripped us new asses.)


Our Long Beach destination was a real mind blower: Uncle Ferdy’s Trained Squirrel Review! Yes, folks, this Earth has an Uncle Ferdy and the show is even better than the one in our world. We all paid ten bucks and watched some really talented squirrels, as well as some chipmunks, prairie dogs and groundhogs, do their thing. There was acrobatics, dancing and all sorts of comedy. It was a great show and there were no critter related incidents because we were all in human bodies and had instinct suppressors turned on.

(Daisy: Even with suppressors on, some of us were twitching.)

(Leon: I may have a permanent facial tic.)


The show was an hour long and apparently only takes place Monday-Saturday, three times a day. When it was all over, several of us got Uncle Ferdy’s autograph.

We got back on the road a bit after 3 and headed off to our last stop, The World Famous Serpent Park near Laguna Beach. It was almost 4 when we got there and, oddly enough, not everyone wanted to go into a huge building full of snakes. Leon, Penny, Roxie, Silky (who died from snakebite once), Mom, Max and Auntie Mary, Auntie Holly and Misty all stayed on the bus. The rest of us ponied up our $7.50 and went into a nightmare.

(Leon: No goddamn way was I going in there!)

(Penny: Nope, nope, nope!)

(Max: Prey animal here, yo. Fuck them snakes!)


Well, a nightmare for some of us. I mean, folks, there were a whole lot of snakes in there, including a species of python we don’t have on our Earth, which is damned good because it was 33 feet long!

(Sasha: HA! I’ve created bigger snakes than that!)

(Daisy: You have? What the hell is wrong with you?)

(Sasha: Was the term “mad scientist” never fully explained to you?)

I nearly pooped myself when I saw it. The pit full of cobras didn’t help anybody’s nerves, either. Ditto the pit full of rattlesnakes or the glass walled hallway that let you walk under a pond containing at least 4 big anacondas. We were in there for an hour and everyone, even Dad, was glad when we left.

(Goldie: I will probably piss myself the next time I see a garden hose out of the corner of my eye.)


After leaving Snake Nightmare Land, we drove on down to San Clemente where we parked the Bus, now looking like an old beater Chevy Nova. Dinner tonight was Italian and as delicious as it always is. We just finished a couple of hours of boardgames and now everyone is drinking and chatting or heading to the Shoe Room.

More reportage from somebody else tomorrow.

Here’s looking at you, kid.

Luke


Destination Sign When We Started: The Land Of The Giants
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Baskerville Hall

QM Radio Station: Girl Group Radio

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Doc Tempest: The Wall Of Voodoo

…from the May, 1999 issue

 

The Doclopedia #1,131

Monsters Of The Circle Sea: Giant Sea Snakes

If you were to sail 200 miles due south of Black Pig Island, you would find the low and swampy island cluster known as the Snake Islands. It is here that the Giant Sea Snakes come to mate, rear their young and then leave those young to mature. Aside from Fishing Bats, no mammals live on these islands, nor do any ground nesting birds or reptiles. Between the inhospitable nature of the islands and the sea snakes, things will probably stay that way.

A newly hatched Giant Sea Snake is three feet long and about as thick as a broomstick. They grow quickly, fed on small fish and large insects while guarded by both their parents. When, at the age of two months, they reach a length of about seven feet, the parents leave them to fend for themselves.

It takes around a year for the young snakes to reach a length of twenty feet. Only then do they leave the island and go out into open water. They will take another two years to reach their full adult size of fifty feet long and four feet thick.

Giant Sea Snakes are not poisonous, but do have a large mouth full of razor sharp teeth. They are fast and aggressive hunters who will eat nearly anything they can swallow whole, including humanoids. It is not unknown for a Giant Sea Snake to attack a small boat in hopes of knocking a couple of crewmen overboard. Needless to say, most sailors give a wide berth to any snakes they might see.

Giant Sea Snakes live for at least 30 years and are reckoned to be as intelligent as dogs.