The Memoirs of
Part 2 - The First Friend
T'was a light, warm, spring evening in Middle Earth,
fragrant with a heady mix of the scent of new flowers and traffic exhaust,
when the young Shiron again found himself in that small, dingy room in
Marlborough Hall. Present also were the author and the mysterious
Mr. Hems along with, of course, THE BOOK. Shiron had been summoned
to hear of an important event. Another 'birth' was imminent that
very night and the author with Mr. Hems were to initiate it. It was
agreed that Shiron was now old enough and had sufficient knowledge of 'life, the universe and everything' to witness the event first
hand. Ever since his creation the process had remained a mystery to
him. It was one of life's great unknowns, rather like the logic
behind Business Organization or the practical use of statistical perms and
coms in the real world . But this evening all would be
revealed and Shiron would be a wiser man for it.
He sat quietly on the bed and gazed thoughtfully at the
many magazine cut out pictures of Linda Lusardi adorning the walls.
"Hmm," he mused quietly to no-one in particular. "It would
be rather nice if they created one like her for me to be friends with,
then maybe we could try the process ourselves one day."
"Pay attention Shiron," replied the author.
"We are about to begin."
Shiron watched intently as the author and Mr. Hems sat at
a little table and reverently opened THE BOOK. A number of strange
looking dice were produced from a small bag. They were 4, 6,
8, 10, 12 and 20 sided respectively but there were more than just one of
each and in a range of multifarious colours. To Shiron they seemed
to be thrown about on the table top with gay abandon, the author
diligently recording the numbers resulting.
"Two 16s and a 12 so far," exclaimed Mr.
Hems. "This looks promising."
This continued for some time with
occasional whoops of
delight and groans of disappointment from the two creators.
The whole process seemed to
revolve around throwing the various dice, recording the scores and then referring
to THE BOOK for the hidden secrets. It was at this point in time
that the impressionable young cleric began to be disillusioned. The
process didn't look anywhere near as much fun as he had imagined and so
his visions of 'creating' with Linda Lusardi vanished into thin air.
And then the time was right for
Shiron," warned Mr. Hems. "What you are about to see is a
truly marvelous sight, one that only a privileged few can hope to
Shiron tensed. Could this
Mr. Hems closed THE BOOK and
both he and the author stood up and away from the table. The
atmosphere was building, the air thick with anticipation. Shiron
tensed yet again and visibly winced. He leant forward, rubbing his
left leg to relieve the cramp.
The air seemed to take on a
life of its own, vibrating
around him and there was a pounding sensation in his ears. The hairs
on the back of his neck stiffened as a great noise built inexorably around
him. Blistering, searing, blindingly fast notes produced seemingly
by the Devil himself and amplified in the ether, tore through the room
making the very air itself hum. Feedback screamed through his
senses. The noise built towards a
crescendo. Shiron put his hands over his ears. It
was all too much, his head would surely explode. This was The
Mr. Hems raised his arms above
his head in a gesture of worship to some unseen god. With his voice
raised above the raging tumult around him he uttered in a strange
tongue the magic words that would bring forth fresh, new life from the
pages of THE BOOK. He spoke as if half to himself and half to the
author. Shiron removed his hands from his ears and strained to decipher speech over the noise for if he
had any hope of performing the same act in the future, he must know the
sacred words, the syllables of life, the final stage of the creation
Shiron listened. He
heard. But he did not understand. At that very instant there
was sudden and total silence. Where but a moment ago the room was resonating with
sound, now there was nothing. To him the words sounded like -
"Let There Be Rock is
awesome. Angus Young's solo is just unbelievable. Turn the
tape over, let's have some Back In Black."
The author deftly changed the
ACDC tape over in the machine. Shiron had to admire the author's
dexterity, his smooth almost graceful motion as the cassette was ejected,
removed, reversed, replaced and loaded for play in one fluid
movement. The image was imprinted on Shiron's mind. An image
of perfect, artistic physical motion. Of style, grace and finesse.
great strength so masterfully controlled, manipulated and held in
check. What power. What serenity. What panache.
What a complete load of utter drivel these 7 lines are!
As Hell's Bells tolled and the
noise again started to build, Shiron felt it again. No, not the
atmosphere of anticipation - the cramp in his leg. Mr. Hems
approached the book again and, with his head swinging wildly up and down
in a nodding motion, opened it up. Blinding light erupted from the
pages and as Shiron stared in amazement and disbelief, out from the very
pages of THE BOOK came forth a form, a human figure. Young, tall,
blonde, well developed. Shiron peered hopefully through the
glare. Unfortunately it was male. The figure emerged from THE
BOOK, growing in stature as it climbed from the open pages, off the table
and into the middle of the room. Shiron stifled a grin as he saw the
figure was dressed in a pair of green pyjamas with little white teddies all over
"It is done," exhaled
Mr. Hems, his shoulders and head slumping forward and remaining there as
if he was completely spent. "You have a new friend
Shiron. His name is ..... err .....um ....." Mr. Hems seemed
uncharacteristically indecisive, unsure. Could it be that the great Hems Did Not Know?
"His name is Falamir and
he is to be a great fighter," exclaimed the author with surety and
"Falamir it is then,"
said Mr. Hems with obvious relief.
sirs," offered Falamir. "I am yet but a mere lad of 16
(yes Falamir was deprived of his childhood as well, sad isn't it?) but I
will be a great warrior for I have a taste for adventure, for glory, for
wealth and," he added demurely, "for Ferrero Rocher
chocolates. But I can't stand Marmite."
And so it came to pass that Falamir
the Unfortunate was born. They found him some suitable
clothing and then all went off to the pub for a quick one, and managed a
couple of drinks as well. Although this was a natural way to
celebrate, there was an ulterior motive.
Their theory was put to the
test when the inn keeper asked if Falamir was over eighteen and without
hesitation, Falamir immediately admitted he wasn't. The author and
Mr. Hems looked at each other. "Told you so," grinned Mr.
Hems in knowing amusement. Shiron just rolled his eyes and muttered
something under his breath. So while the author enjoyed a pint of
Carlsberg and Mr. Hems and Shiron opted for Trophy Bitter, the young Falamir
had to settle for bitter lemon.
"I don't understand
it," puzzled Falamir. "I really fancied a flagon of fine
foaming ale but felt compelled to tell the truth about being under
age. It's as if I had no choice in the matter."
The author and Mr. Hems exchanged a
wink. "That's because you have a lawful good alignment Falamir. You must be law abiding and truthful at all times. It
is impossible for you to lie, wittingly or otherwise. Sorry."
"Bummer," groaned Falamir
as Shiron chuckled into his pint.
Shiron and Falamir grew to be
firm friends. So firm in fact that Falamir was far too polite to
mention the small irregularity on Shiron's right ear, such a gentleman was
Falamir was kitted out with all
the equipment and accoutrements of a fighter and trained with Shiron,
building a strong and formidable team. Falamir realized, like Shiron
before him, that his future lay not in the Sun horoscope but in a career
in AD&D and so the two formed a business partnership. They were
both equal partners and each put in an identical amount of venture
capital. They both fully understood the relevant financial and legal
implications of such a venture and willingly accepted both the chance to
make an absolute fortune and the risk of unlimited liability should things
not work out. Falamir would do most of the fighting and protect
Shiron. In turn Shiron would ensure Falamir's continued physical and
spiritual welfare by administering Cure Lights whenever needed, providing
back up and letting him read his copy of 2000AD every week.
One balmy evening not long after
Falamir's arrival the author and Mr. Hems
summoned the two friends to the little room where it had all begun.
"We feel that you are both ready to embark on your first
adventure," intoned Mr. Hems. "How do you feel about
"Well I feel a bit peckish
actually. I'd rather have a bite to eat first if that's OK,"
"You great pillock,"
chided Shiron, slapping him round the head with irritation. He was
obviously eager to get going. "You can get something during the
adventure. There's bound to be a MacDonald's or something where
"Well, what's it to
be?" asked Mr. Hems, also showing slight signs of irritation.
"Let's go," answered
Shiron excitedly without waiting for Falamir to offer further
protest. Mr. Hems and the author exchanged a satisfied glance.
"Excellent," said the
author. "Let's waste no more time. Get your gear and
we'll be off."
"What do you mean
'We'?" asked Shiron. "You're not coming as well are
you? You're not dressed for it."
"No, not exactly,"
replied the author cryptically. "Let's just say we'll be
watching over you. But you won't be alone. Come, I shall
introduce you to your traveling companions."
The four left the small room
with Mr. Hems leading, carrying THE BOOK, another book very much like it, the bag of dice and some other
documents. The author had a ring binder and his own container of
multi- sided dice. Both looked very new. They wound their way
down stairs and through the dark timbered labyrinthine hallways and
corridors of Marlborough Hall. Mr. Hems and the author exchanged
brief greetings with other residents on the way but Shiron and Falamir got
some very strange looks as they clanked and rattled by in all their
armour, weapons and equipment. Mr. Hems turned a final corner and
led them into a much larger room full of expectant looking people.
It was immediately apparent
that the eight people in the room formed two distinct groups. Half
were dressed in adventuring type clothing similar to Shiron and Falamir and the others wore clothing more similar to the author and Mr.
Hems. Shiron realized that the author was also a stranger here as
Mr. Hems introduced him to everybody present. Shiron and Falamir were then introduced, but strangely, Shiron thought, only to the
characters in adventuring garb.
There was Dick De Danger, an
experienced human campaigner and master swordsman. A force to be
reckoned with. 'Hey' Presto, another fighter type. Neither
Shiron or Falamir had ever met an Elf before but they instinctively recognized
Presto for one. He wasn't particularly experienced and apparently
not very masterful either. Erendil was also Elvish and yet another
fighter class character. He immediately came across as conceited
with an over inflated ego but despite these drawbacks, overall a decent
enough bloke. Lastly there was Feanar who displayed both human and
Elven characteristics. He was a hybrid, a Half Elf. Completely
bereft of any visible armour or weaponry he was dressed in a simple, if
very smart, traveling cloak. He could have been nothing other than a
The two groups talked amongst
themselves for a while, getting to know each other a bit and planning the
adventure. They all listened intently as Mr. Hems caught their
attention and preceded to outline their quest. Some of the author's
group made notes as names, places, events and details were given.
Some of them asked questions for clarification. Some were answered
by Mr. Hems and some, pointedly, were not.
The adventurers had been hired
by some villagers to investigate 'strange' (no elaboration was
forthcoming) happenings and goings on. A reward had been offered for
successfully solving the mystery and bringing the perpetrators to justice.
And so the scene was set,
adventure beckoned. So did the naked girl for the month of March on
the wall calendar. The six party members adjusted and fiddled with
equipment, ready for the off. The author sat patiently with the
other group of people at the large table in the middle of the room.
It was strewn with papers, books, pencils, multi- sided dice in every
conceivable colour, packets of crisps and bottles of Coke. Also on
the centre of the table stood six tiny painted figures. Shiron
peered closer to study them. Somewhat disconcertedly he noticed that
each little figure bore an uncanny likeness to himself and his fellow
Sitting at the head of the
table with even more paraphernalia around him than anyone else, the great
Mr. Hems called for silence and opened THE BOOK. The party waited,
anxious to get going. Mr. Hems opened a thin, innocuous looking
pamphlet entitled 'The Sunfire's Heart Pt1'. Immediately the room
wavered around them and then vanished into nothing. For a brief
moment there was void and then a new setting wavered in and materialized.
They saw a new environment take shape all around them, fusing into solid
reality. They felt a rush of fresh, warm, salty air and found
themselves on a beach. There were just the six of them, the other
group and the room were nowhere to be seen. They had
Here endeth Part 2.
Don't miss the next episode - 'Life's a Beach'
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