Chapter 105: Interference
We left our heroes trying to pick up the N'Butu, despite the guerilla interference from their hereditary enemies, the Kitsu. The bulk of the Kitsu have been successfully loaded onto the Tellemataru, but it turns out that five great Kitsu wizards and two or three dozen good hunters are missing. They have volunteered, it seems, to stay on Yazatlan and disrupt our attempts to load their long-time foes. And, indeed, so far we have only collected about ten percent of the N'Butu.
Inquiring of the N'Butu chief, we learn there is a secondary group that we might try to load -- the sick, elderly, and young, who are coming in a separate party to the pickup point. We acquire the help of Desmond, Greywolf, and a large number of pixie-sized flying fays, and try for this. We start the pickup at our standard time zero.
Unfortunately, (1) the N'Butu are a lot more nervous about uncanny stuff like doors in the air and fays, and (2) the guerillas start their disruptions again. Features of the mayhem include:
- N'Tabo Bey picking up three grandmothers at once and hustling them down the tunnel.
- A herd of goats getting stuck in the tunnel.
- Several Pemnals loitering on the ceiling near the reception area, fascinated by the goats, grandmothers, and other incoming.
- Dafnord appointing the young goat-herd his lieutenant for traffic control.
- Excellent crowd dispersal by the guerillas, appearing and disappearing, turning into large animals, and tossing incendiary magic sticks, all setting the N'Butu hithering and thithering through the forest.
- Daphne, Robbie, Markel, and Gannar chasing guerillas around the forest, putting out their fires and shooting them down.
- A captive guerilla using his magic amulet to teleport out of the Tellemataru -- and thus into hard vacuum.
- Tom using glamour to shrink a large party of N'Butu, to gut them unjammed in the tunnel (then having to hasten after them an un-shrink them when he learns that a Pemnal took them away on a ... food cart. Fortunately, it was taking them to the N'Butu infirmary.)
- Tiny Kitsu running in panic around the Tellemataru, terrified by the giant alien staff, until Tom catches them.
All in all, we need a new approach.
©1984, 1994, 2005 Earl Wajenberg. All Rights Reserved.