The Eilythry World
Week 3, The Interrogation
After a strenuous day of headache, identity crisis, and an utter failure to read the mind of their prisoner, the party went off to patch themselves up and sleep (though Heaven knows what time it is by their various body-clocks.)
The next day, Dr. Wu used more ordinary methods on the prisoner (sodium pentathol) and persuaded him that he was under a doctor's care, recovering from a fight, and they wanted to test his memory. We learned all manner of things about this castle and its world. We learned that there are two sets of guards, elite and common, and the names of the captains. We learned that this is a tightly hierarchical society. We learned the "Lady's Creed" that Tom failed to fake. (It sounds vaguely like a Christian creed, but the name of the Savior isn't Jesus.) We learned that this is Castle Fenmark, held by a Lord Fenmark, a widower with one daughter. We learned that there are two dungeons, one common and one elite. The contents of the elite dungeon are often politically sensitive and the common guard don't go there. Eventually, we ran out of questions and put him back to sleep. Wonder when we'll return him....
We then started poking around with the pantope again. We discovered that it can open more than one door. (By far the safest way of opening multiple doors is to open them at the same time on the same universe. We have no immediate intention of doing anything else.) We tried opening a second door experimentally, and got one on the facing wall from our first door. However, after a while it caused an instability of some multi-dimensional kind and all connection with this universe snapped. sigh
We re-established connection and found ourselves facing the inner courtyard. Very handy. It seemed. Then we learned that the pantope door was super-imposed over the courtyard gate. Some soldiers noticed that the gate was closed for no good reason and tried to open it. This they were unable to do. Curious people started to gather around, including the bishop, who came limping up using his crook as a crutch. So we didn't kill the old curmudgeon after all. We decided we had better not stir up any more fuss, so we disconnected and watched the soldiers at the "gate" fall over backwards as the gate flew up (or simply vanished).
We reconnected to a time some days before our first connection -- "first" counted in interior pantope time. We tried considered reversing the slow-down trick, but the Serving System told us this could break the connections unintentionally. So we satisfied ourselves with playing with the doorways.
At first, we were opened on another by-our-lady wall in the by-our-lady outer courtyard. We opened a second door and found, to our delight, that it opened on an inner room, a currently-disused guest bedroom, it seemed. It even had a window looking down on the INNER courtyard. True, we can't very well deploy the Naza through someone's clothes closet (which is where our door is now), at least not very quietly, but it made a VERY good vantage point, especially after we planted a bug under the windowsill. Now, at least, we'll know which dungeon they put Cantrel in, for we can get a view of both.
As to deploying the Naza, we decided the best course was to close the useless door on the outer courtyard and try again, keeping the door on the spare bedroom. (By the way, the Serving System faked up a closet on the bridge, just in case someone tries to use the closet we've pasted over.) We tried again, and, by the grace of the dice, got a door on the inside of a guard tower.
Now we wait. We wait for our own arrival, for Cantrel's capture, for his subsequent trial. Then we will be free of the bonds of history (we hope) and can spring Cantrel the night before the ill-fated God Gambit. In fact, it now occurs to us, the gambit might have been ill-fated because Cantrel was already gone and we "angels" didn't look very omniscient by asking for him. We'll hope so.
Copyright © 1998, Jim Burrows. All Rights Reserved.