The Magic Beans – Page 26

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magic-beans-26

From the Hall of the Ice Wizard, Perilous Jack and Tynplyt the Death Claw travel through a long subterranean tunnel, until they gradually reach a stout iron door.

The construct drags the heavy door open and they emerge into the light. The door slams shut behind them.
“To Foldoron Lake!” Jack cries, and the construct bounds off, taking terrific leaps with its powerful legs that rival the magic of Jack’s Seven League Boots. Soon enough they enter a desolate region where huge blocks of stone levitate in the air, doubtless the ruins of a floating city built eons ago by the Old Ones. Here Jack encounters a strange medallion affixed to the side of a GreenShaft inverted overhead:

 

ghurka-medallion-large

The medallion of the Red Ghurka Goblins

An instant later the medallion becomes intelligible, as a huge red centipede emerges from the GreenShaft, snapping its mandibles at them. Tynplyt dodges back in time, and the centipede retreats into its lair, evidently uninterested in the smell of the machine-man. This must be the border of Red Ghurka Territory, the domain of the Goblin tribe that worships the giant red centipedes. Jack makes a mental note to look out for the centipede medallion as he passes through.

A distant commotion catches his eye: on the far side of a river he observes a pair of Stone Giants locked in dire combat with a huge monster. It is difficult to see what exactly transpires; Jack casts about for a way to get nearer. There are numerous dangers surrounding him – the Giant Centipede in the GreenShaft, and below a pair of Piranha Flowers. Beyond them lies the river, from which Caribes, huge carnivorous fish, leap and twist. But there is another way.

Jack takes control of Tynplyt and causes the construct to leap to a higher platform. From there they gain the platform from which the Giant Centipede’s burrow hangs; then up and over the hovering architecture until they can look down on the scene.

It is a Chimaera the Giants battle, and despite the huge clubs carried by the Giants, it appears to be winning the fight. The lion head roars and bites, tearing out splintered chunks of wooden club as easily as bloody flesh. The dragon’s head spits flame into the faces of the Giants, and the goat’s head butts savagely, nearly pitching one Giant into the Caribe-infested river.

Jack cannot find it in his heart to align with either side of this battle. Stone Giants and Chimaeras are equally savage and cruel; if he encountered either alone in the wilderness, he would have sword in hand before the first challenge was uttered.

Glancing aside, he notices three gleaming Emeralds hovering nearby. He throws levers inside the control chamber of the Death Claw, and Tynplyt leaps to retrieve the stones. They are safe on a high platform before the battling monsters below even notice their presence. Jack urges the construct into high speed, and they leap away from the scene of the battle.

In moments they have left the Chimaera and its foes behind, and are striding deeper into Red Ghurka Territory.

Add 3 Emeralds to the Pouch of Ghrul.

Turn to 66.