In the days where a simple magical wall could have prevented any from entering, why would anyone build a labyrinth to protect something? If what I have heard about the ‘’time of a thousand magicks’’ is true, wouldn’t they have been served better to create a Wall of True-Intentions or some such? Only those whose intentions match what they wished would be allowed through the wall, utterly destroying all others. ONE DOOR. Plainly visible with a sign and everything. “If you’re an old dusty coot that wants to preserve knowledge and truth and that crap, please feel free to come on in!!! If you’re not, you’ll die the death of a thousand dead deaths. Ok, thanks.” How hard would that have been?
No, they had to make it CON-VO-LU-TED! And half of this ranting is at myself, because I should have known better in the beginning. Humanoids that are too smart for their own good always like to put stupid tests like this in the entrances of old things. Thad is just the type to throw the answer in your face, playing off of common misconceptions – which is what the Wo’Elfenbrutites did to us. He says it’s because he is a genius, but I think it’s because he lived through a time period called ’’The Sixties and Seventies’’ in the Mirror World. It must have addled his brains.
I met up with CrIsis and got in at the beginning of a puzzle. The whole floor was stone and wood, and all metal was magically heated to near melting point if touched. There were six alcoves off the main hallway, from which magical voices came. They first warned us away if we were not friends of Wo’Elfenbrut. After we passed the first set of alcoves, they said “Turn back now.” and after we passed the second set they said “You have gone too far” or something similar. I should have had my mind working at that point, as the secret entrances were obviously in the first or second alcoves… or both sets. “Turn back now,” and “You’ve gone too far.” It sounds like the infantile game of Fire and Ice, where you guide someone by telling them they are getting hotter or colder.
The maze consisted of a series of wooden doors with wooden locks. Luckily No Name had a wooden key he’d gotten from somewhere. While testing the first door without the key, I stood far too closely – even though my companions checked for wards and magical enchantments and found none. When testing magic, you should have only the heartiest constitutions present, and allow those of a different kind of hearty to vacate the area! The first door’s ward wave hit me and it felt like it took half of me with it as it moved along the corridor behind me. The key worked without issue, but when we looked at the other side of the door it was completely smooth, without handle, latch, or keyhole. We thought that meant it was a one-way trip. Pressing onward was the only thing in our minds at the time, though.
We used our wooden key to open the warded wooden doors all the way through the maze. I should thank you, for helping me with the Wall of Revealing. Were it not for that, we would have been caught unawares by a Minotaur wielding a rune weapon and a Mage, most likely slaughtering all of us – and most importantly ME! They weren’t part of the labyrinth, though – just competing for the same goal.
Our journey was completely smooth sailing puzzle-wise till the end where we were met with a metal door. I SHOULD HAVE HAD MY MIND WORKING BY THEN! Obviously the door meant one of two things. The first: We were entering a second test, where metal was now valid to be used, even though there was absolutely nothing but a few warded doors to deal with before. Which was NOT complex enough to be all a logical labyrinth used to test you. The second: We had come to a dead end and should backtrack to see what we missed, because the whole point of the labyrinth’s rules were to NOT TRUST IN METAL! Why would we touch the metal door?!
Ursus, who had been leading us so far, reached the wooden key to the metal door’s keyhole, and I fled as far as I could get, which meant an alcove near a warded wooden door, the key for which was being used by Ursus. The Bearman almost died from the trap, and I suggested that we must have missed something earlier in the maze. The one thing that stumped us was that the door backward, of course, had no handle or lock on the back side, so were we supposed to set off the ward to get through? We tested it, after I ran as far as I could from the ward – which was back to the metal door, nearly falling into the chasm that opened under the trapped metal door. No ward was triggered and the wooden door swung freely open. Obviously they were guiding us backwards, to the first hall with the alcoves. And so we backtracked, led like rats in a maze.
We returned to the first room and No Name uncovered the secret entrances. Two of them, one each in the second set of alcoves. The secret entrance’s lever on the west side was shaped like a W, and the one on the east was shaped like an E. Though, I was certain it was for more than compass direction, as we were in “Wo’Elfenbrut.” We decided to go through the Elfen door (E), as the bloodscent of some of our foes – the minotaur and mage – led through that one.
We followed the pathway, and found a doorway whose lever was shaped in the pattern of “HEW.” As the lore states, the Humans and Elves created the Wolfen. I announced my theory to the group and they accepted it. They took it as a good sign that we were on the right track… but I felt that there hadn’t been enough Logic to the puzzle yet, even though I had failed the puzzles up to this point. I was starting to jump at my own shadow, feeling like we were missing something.
To pass through the stairway behind the ‘HEW’ door, you had to be a Human, Elfen, or Wolfen – which only half of our group was. No matter what we tried, short of destroying the barrier, we couldn’t get Xerx’ses or Grignak through fully conscious. Xerx’ses eventually destroyed the barrier, and we were all able to proceed unencumbered. As we continued onward, No Name pointed out that the barrier had regenerated itself.
We reached the end of a hallway, and there were three wooden doors, as well as an alcove. Obviously we should have just forgotten the doors and searched the alcove, but the trackers were set on the doors. Luckily we were saved from our stupidity by the blood trail leading us true. The Secret door’s lever was “EWH,” which means that the next sequence would have to be WHE, as the pattern rotated the letters in a predictable pattern, HEWHE, on whatever door we find next. We walked through the door and felt time stand still, and then shoot forward. As we were aware of it, after passing through the same thing getting into the dungeon, we noticed the difference. Surely, we had lost another month to this place.
We were deposited in a room with no way back and nothing but a giant magic circle and three statues. They were a Wolfen, an Elf, and a Human. We stopped to catch our breath before trudging onward.
>>A Travel Log – a new endeavor – written in the 5th Year of CrIsis, by Rooster; Lord Gregory Chaunticleer Malory; Bard Extraordinaire; Master of Audiences; Commander of Imagination; Lover of Intrigue; Grand Inquisitor of True Balladry, student of Thoth<<
>> Picture 1: Disney and Geeks of Doom