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Rated: ASR · Novel · Sci-fi · #258659
Chapters 3-4. Contains minimum federal standard of post consumer recycled punchlines.
This is the third chapter of Dungeons and
Wagons: the Fantastic Seven.

** Images For Use By Upgraded+ Only **

Yellow, the Sprite Cowhand
         "Do you have a mount?" Ezra asked
Jedadiah the Billy the next morning as they left
the inn.
         "Yup, right here," said Jedadiah,
walking up to a large brown horse tied up next
to Ezra's Monday. Ezra was not impressed.
The horse looked old and slow, plus it had an
exceptionally large saddle blanket for some
         "That doctor was nice enough to let
me keep 'im on his horse here for warmth,"
said Jedadiah, whipping the blanket off of the
horse. The blanket burst into life, squirming a
circle around its owner like an excited puppy
and than levitating several feet off the ground,
ready to accept a rider.
         "Oh," said Ezra, "It's a flying carpet."
         "A Ford model," said Jed, stroking its
back, "His name’s Tuesday, after the day’ve
the week."
         "That name is so not funny anymore."
         "No, it ain't."
         Xak-xak came out the doors, after
having filled up on water. He was consulting a
map. "My sources tell me that we should find
another member of the Fantastic Seven in the
planes west of here.
         "Who exactly are these 'sources' of
yours?" Ezra asked, untying Monday.
         "The Leprechaun Teamsters."
         "So, which plane’re we goin’ to?"
asked Jed.
         "The Astral Plane."

         The Astral Plane is a mystical, boring
place. It is very unlike the real world, very dark
despite the bright pools of color dotting the
black landscape. Founded in 1385, this plane
was made so that people had some place to
go when they were astral projecting. Ever
since narcotics were popularized, though, the
plane has gone more or less unused if not for
herders, smugglers, and very very lost and
confused people. Ezra, Jed, and Xak-xak were
able to pay their way into it through the local
plane station.
         Ezra, sitting atop his mighty pegasus,
scanned the skyless horizon with his superior
elf eyes. Xak-xak hung on behind him,
awaiting his verdict. Jed strummed a tune on
his guitar. At the time, there wasn’t much else
to do.
         "There's some activity over yonder,"
said Ezra, pointing over the portal that leads to
the yonder plane (a very disturbing place).
         Suddenly the "activity" was a good deal
closer than one would think it should be. The
three had to dive aside on their mounts, which
spread them apart much more than one
would think it should. A multitude of speeding
shapes shot between them and poured down
a portal.
         "Follow them!" Xak-xak called.
         Monday and Tuesday rose up and
shot down the same portal. They flew back
into the real world, finding themselves in an
open grassland. A herd of cattle was moving
away from them (much slower than in the
astral plane). Two figures darted around
above them. A larger one sitting on a horse
took up the rear. Flying closer it became
apparent that the large one was a dwarf and
the smaller two were sprites.
         "It's probably one of these," said
Xak-xak, taking out his mirror and giving it to
Ezra, "What do you see, Mr. Ammakon?"
         Ezra flew Monday closer to the herd
and tried to view the three figures through the
mirror. "It's not the dwarf," he said, "But that
one sprite is showing some yell-...uh-oh."
         "Something wrong?" Xak-xak asked
         "Both of the sprites are reflecting
         "Clobberin' cantrips," said Jed with a
grin, "That ain't s'posed to happen, is it?"
         "Oh, dear," said Xak-xak weakly, "That
could only mean that one is a member of the
Fantastic Seven, and the other is one of the
Malicious Seven."
         Ezra sighed deeply, taking off his hat
to fan himself. "Is this something else I'll have
to worry about?"
         "You're darn tootin'," said Jed, "Legend
has it, the Malicious Seven is the evil
counterpart of the Fantastic Seven."
         "Who died and made you the steamy
little robot?" Ezra said.
         "We wandering musicians learn a lot,"
said Jed.
         "How do we know that you're not one
of the Malicious Seven?"
         "Please, Mr. Ammakon," said Xak-xak,
"You can distinguish between a member of
the Fantastic and Malicious Sevens by their
personalities. You guys are good, the others
are evil."
         "Of course," Ezra shrugged.
         "Well, we'll have to find out which one
of these guys is with us," said Jed. Before
anyone could stop him, he shot forward on
Tuesday over the herd. He took his guitar off
of his back and began to strum and sing.

Far 'cross the prairie you run and you trek
But it'd be a big help if you'd stop for a sec
Just do me a favor, just stop there and stand
Listen to my subliminal music command

         The entire cattle train came to an
abrupt halt. The two sprites looked at them
oddly, then they saw Jedadiah.
         "Hey, what is this, a robbery?" said
one of the sprites, flying up to the satyr and
twirling his lasso.
         "Don't make me get medieval on your
goat's tail," said the other, flying up on his
other side, passing a large knife from hand to
hand. They looked like twins. They both had
yellow hair and antennae, looked fairly young,
standing just over two feet tall.
         "What be goin' on up there, boys?"
called the dwarf.
         "We got us a ruffian up here, Mr.
Warent!" called the first sprite as they began to
circle Jed.
         "I'll knife you good, you yellow goat
brained..." said the other, brandishing his
shining knife.
         "You're the one who's yellow," Jed
pointed out, lifting his guitar and blasting both
sprites back with a loud, sonic note, "Now,
don't ya'll think you're gettin' a little big fer yer
         "Stop screwing around, Jed!" said
Ezra, swooping up on Monday, "What're you
doing? Do you know which one is which?"
         "Might hard to say," said Jed,
scratching his head, "They're both perty nasty."
         "Sorry about this!" Ezra called, waving
to the dwarf, "Can we just discuss something
with you?"

         "Ezra Ammakon," Ezra introduced
himself once he was on the ground, "The wise
guy here with the guitar is Jedadiah the Billy,
and this here is Oil Slick."
         "Xak-xak," said Xak-xak.
         "M'name's Warent," said the dwarf
gruffly, "Alabast Warent. This here is Fairy
         "Dusty Fair," said the sprite with the
lasso, slapping his face with exasperation
while his brother snorted dumbly with
         "Right, sorry, Dusty," said Warent, "And
the other one is his brother Rusty Fair. They're
helping me drive my cattle to Del Fouche."
         "Mighty small team, isn't it?" said Ezra.
         "Works on two levels," grinned Jed.
         "Yup," said Warent, "But with these
two, I don't need any more. So, what was it
you wanted to talk about?"
         "One of these boys is good and the
other is evil," explained Ezra.
         "According to Freud's Evil Twin theory,"
said Jed.
         "Okay, Jed, you can stop talking," said
Ezra irritably.
         Warent just looked at them blankly.
This clearly was not what he expected to hear.
         "Allow me to elaborate, sir," said
Xak-xak stepping forward, "One of these boys
is the yellow of the Fantastic Seven, the other
the yellow of the Malicious Seven."
         "I see..."said Warent, who clearly was
as blind as a bat carved out of wood with the
blindness curse on it as far as seeing went.
         "If anyone's evil around here," said
Rusty, shooting his brother an ugly look, "It's
Dusty. He took the last of the marble rye."
         "Evil?" said Dusty, "What the ding-ruck
are you talking about?"
         "I speak one dozen languages," said
Jed, "And ding-ruck is not a word in any’ve
         "What he's talking about," said a new
voice, "Is how we have to now determine
which of you goes with him, and which goes
with me."
         "Josiah?" said Ezra as the elf
emerged from behind a tree. He wore the
same striped suit and held a bowler hat and a
cane in his hand. His one-eyed mercenary
came up behind him, a stick of dynamite in
         "That's right, Ezra," said Josiah flatly,
"Don't worry, I won't try to kill you as long as
your seven is bigger than mine."
         "You mean..."
         "Right," said Josiah, "I, too, glow red
when reflected in a mirror. Harakath, the
leader of the Lotus Eaters, has charged me
with the finding of the other six, and it appears
that I've finally gotten lucky."
         "Do we get to blow someone up this
time?" said the one-eyed human, "I ain't blowd
nothin' up fer a long while."
         Josiah sighed. "Allow me to introduce
my henchman, a two-bit bandit by the name of
Rattlesnake Clem. I believe you are familiar
with his affinity with dynamite. Here's what I
propose, each of the sprites will do battle with
him to see which is which."
         "Uh..." said Xak-xak, "How will that
         "I thought you of all people or things
would know," said Josiah, "Were you not told
that a member of the Malicious Seven can not
harm a criminal, while the Fantastic Seven
cannot harm an innocent man?"
         "...No, I never knew that," said Xak-xak
         "Very well, then," said Josiah, "You
there, the one with the rope, you will go first."

         “Bill!” shouted Abscond, cracking his
staff down on the table. “If I catch you sleeping
again, there will be consequences.”
         “Wha?” said Bill groggily. “I’m awake.
What were we doing? Have we ordered lunch
         “Ach,” said Gigi. “Let’s not open that
can of worms again.”
         “We’re still devided on the what to
have for lunch issue,” said Walker. “It’s been
tabled for now.”
         “You know what we could use in this
place?” said Spunky Jack. “A potpourri.”
         “Anyway,” said Abscond, popping a
pez into his mouth from a gargoyle dispenser,
“What is this new develpoment of a ‘Malicious
         “They appear to be the obligatory bad
guys,” said Walker.
         “Newton’s Third Law,” said Walker.
“To every force there is an equal and opposite
evil force.”
         “Uh, I’m pretty sure prophesies don’t
follow the laws of physics.”
         “They have to. According to the Treaty
of Bongo of 1935, prophesies have to follow
Newton’s laws if physics have to follow
Murphy’s laws.”
         Bill went back to sleep.

         Xak-xak, Ezra, Jedadiah, Warent,
Rusty, and Josiah gave Dusty and
Rattlesnake Clem some space as they stood,
facing each other, ready to fight. Dusty
spun his lasso skillfully while Clem grinned
dumbly, dynamite at the ready.
         Dusty made the first move. He shot
out his lasso, fast as a bullet, to snare the
explosive out of Clem's hand. He flung the
stick high into the air and began to spin the
rope around himself, faster and faster to make
a small whirlwind with which he flew at Clem.
         Clem, undaunted by Dusty's efforts, lit
a cigarette. He stepped out of the path of the
lasso whirlwind and under the stick of
dynamite, which he caught.
         Dusty stopped his whirlwind and threw
his rope over Clem. Clem still didn't appear
fazed, but lit the dynamite with his cigarette. It
exploded, and Clem vanished. Dusty hovered
several feet off the ground, not knowing what
to think, when another small explosion behind
him heralded Clem's reappearance. He
grabbed the sprite by the boot and lit another
stick of dynamite.
         "Hey, he's gonna kill him!" said Rusty,
"Make him stop!"
         "Kill me?" growled Dusty, struggling to
free his boot, "Not on my life! Let go, I'll gaurt
you good!"
         Josiah just crossed his arms. Rusty
became frustrated.
         "What, are you deaf?" he yelled,
buzzing about Josiah's ears, "He shouldn't be
killing him!"
         But Josiah didn't do anything. In panic,
Rusty flung his knife at Clem. It hit true, slicing
the wick of the explosive before it went off.
         "Hey, there's something going on
here, isn't there?" Ezra said suspiciously to
Josiah, "Wouldn't it have made sense for your
guy not to fight back?"
         "Hey, I see what this is," said Jed, "You
knew which was yours all along, and made up
that whole deal just to kill off our guy!"
         "That's a relief," said Xak-xak, "I
thought I was forgetting something important."
         Josiah frowned grimly. In one sudden
movement, he reached into his hat and pulled
out a wand with which he tried to blast Ezra
with a burst of blue light. Fortunately, Ezra
was also a quick draw and was able to yank
out his pistols fast enough. He spun one on
his finger, holding it like a shield. The magic
ball hit it and was absorbed.
         Josiah didn't quit. He fired more blue
balls of magic at the three members of the
Fantastic Seven and Xak-xak. Ezra couldn't
block them all.
         Dusty shot away from Rattlesnake
Clem and over to Ezra, fashioning a new
lasso on his rope to replace the one that got
blown up. He began to spin it at his side.
         "Jump in!" he said, shaking his head
in the direction of the spinning loop.
         "Did you just tell me to jump into
your..." said Ezra.
         "Yes!" said Dusty, "It'll take us back to
the astral plane!"
         “Nice to have you aboard, kiddo!” said
         Jedadiah helped Xak-xak through as
Ezra continued to block Josiah, than grabbed
Tuesday and went through himself. Ezra
jumped through, Monday at his heels, and
Dusty taking up the rear.
         "They can't escape us!" said Josiah.
         "Ah, so you got a back up plan, do ya?”
said Clem.
         "Shut up, Clem," said Josiah, "Now,
Rusty, you're coming with us."
         "You tried to kill my brother," he said
         "He's your enemy now," said Josiah, "If
I've learned one thing in life, it's that friends
sometimes become enemies. Clem, if you
         Clem stepped in between the two of
them. He stuck his cigarette to a new stick of
dynamite. It exploded and the three of them
         Mr. Warent was now alone with his
cows. He decided that he would never stop to
talk to elves again.

         The four of them sat around a
campfire in the astral plane. Jed played a soft
tune on his guitar. Ezra listened to it carefully.
It’s gentle melody made him feel at ease, but
then he realized this was because it sounded
suspiciously like the jingle for a brand of
chocolate syrup he liked as a kid.
         “How do you like your coffee?” said
Dusty, checking the pot he had over the fire. “I
like it strong enough to emulate a haste spell.”
         “You’re drinking coffee?” said Ezra.
“Now? At night?”
         The sprite stared at Ezra, trying to
formulate an answer. “Maybe...” He sniffed
his pot and reeled back in disgust. “Glat! It
smells like mocha without the chocolate!”
         “It’s an aquired taste, youngin’,” said
Jed. “Maybe when you grow up.”
         “I’m not a kid!” Dusty insisted. “I’m just
small boned!”
         "Mr. Ammakon," said Xak-xak, eager to
change the subject, "Don't you think it's time to
tell us what your deal is with Josiah?"
         Ezra sighed. "It was about fifty years
         "Fifty?" said Dusty, "Bull kroots. No
way you're a day over..."
         "Do you have any idea how long elves
live?" said Ezra, annoyed at being interrupted,
"Anyway, back on Earth, Josiah and I were
police deputies in the NOPD."
         "New Orc Police Department. Anyway,
during a big drug bust, Josiah disappeared. A
week later I was told he was dead. I hadn't
heard of him since."
         "Wow," said Dusty, "That quatz was
your partner?"
         "I kind’ve pictured that story bein' less
boring," said Jed, "And what is a quatz? Do
you just make up words?"
         "Guys, please," said Xak-xak, "Let's
just get some rest. Tomorrow we have a
difficult search ahead of us.
         “I think my coffee’s alive,” said Dusty.
         “Go to sleep,” said Ezra.
         “It’s making faces at me.”
         “We’ll leave the fire on for you.”

Green, the Centaur Medicine

         When the first pioneers started to
colonize the outer planets, the main problem
they had to deal with was the temperature.
Venus and Mercury were way too hot, while the
others were far too cold. At first they tried to
transmute the atmospheres for heat control,
but this really ran up the manna bill, so they
just moved all the planets into Earth's orbit,
maintaining a good distance between each
world. However, there is still something in the
atmosphere of Venus that traps a little extra
heat, and is suspected to really make some
people weird.
         Dusty Fair walked into the general
store of Del Fouche. He approached the
counter where a goblin sat behind the cash
register, lazily flipping through the Magazine of
         "Hey," said Dusty, slapping his hand
on the counter like he saw so many other
tough people do, "I'd like to purchase some
food for the trail."
         The goblin turned the page of his
magazine, but showed little intent of doing
anything else.
         "Ahem," said Dusty, wondering if he
didn't hit the counter hard enough. "Can I buy
something here?"
         The goblin gave him an angry glare.
"Can't you read?" He gestured at the "No Shirt,
no Shoes, no Service" sign.
         "Uh, yes," said Dusty, scratching his
head. "I DO have a shirt and a pair of boots..."
         "Right," said the goblin, "You're already
in violation of the first two rules. Don't try to
break the third."
         "Um..." said Dusty, "I believe that sign
means that you have to have a shirt and
shoes to get service."
         "Nonsense!" said the goblin with a
laugh. "If that were so, they would have to
include pants on it. No way I'm serving
someone without pants."
         "What about a dress or skirt?" Dusty
pointed out.
         "What, like a cross dresser?" said the
goblin. "They're not allowed in here."
         "I don't think you get the point..."
         "No, you don't," said the goblin,
tapping the sign.
         Dusty tried to adopt a tough persona
and said, "Hey, yump, are you gonna sell me
something, or am I gonna have to kratz you an
new zong-bar?"
         "Haven't you heard that the customer
is always right?" said the goblin.
         "...Yes, but I believe I am the..."
         The goblin picked up a piece of jerky,
opened the cash register to drop in a coin,
and closed it, munching the jerky. "Now, who's
the customer?"
         "I am!"
         "Not until you buy something.”
         “I am buying something!”
         “That’d be an interesting feat, without
me selling it to you!”
         This looks like it could take a while, so
let's go see what Ezra, Jedadiah, and Xak-xak
are doing.
         “Are they the ones who’ve been shinin’
mirrors at people?” a tall, hairy ogre asked the
innkeeper, pointing into the dining room
where they sat.
         “Si,” replied the innkeeper, a short
gnome in a sombraro which was way too big
for him. “Sure, it’s strange, but I don’t ask
         “Yea?” said the troll. “Why not?”
         “I don’t know how to say ‘que’ in
         Ezra could hear their conversation
word for word, but he didn’t care. He merely
sniffed at his whiskey, frowned in
disappointment, and spoke.
         "I'm getting really tired, Jed," he said.
"It's been almost a week, and no signs of the
other four colors. Jed? Jed, will you pay
         Jedadiah, sitting across the table from
Ezra, was occupied with a very friendly veela.
This comly, almost human looking creature
had a look in her eyes that almost made you
forget she was undead.
         "Tarnation, Ezra," said Jed, turning
from the veela for a second. "You've gotta
lighten up a might." He talked to the veela. "I
wish you reflected an unnatural color."
         Much to Ezra's surprise, she appeared
to appreciate this strange comment without
explination. He sighed and put his face in his
         "I do hope nothing's happened," said
Xak-xak nervously. "I haven't heard from the
Leprechaun Teamsters for a while now."
         "Release your steam valve, Oil Slick,"
said Ezra. "We'll find them. Now, where has
that kid gotten to? Jed, did you... Jed!"
         Jedadiah was no longer listening
again. Ezra got out of his chair and walked
around the table. He pulled back the veela by
her collar and said, "Could you please leave,
         The veela, looking fairly insulted,
up and left the saloon, turning only to wave at
Jed at the useless swinging doors.
         "Now, that's no way to treat a lady,"
said Jed.
         "I did her a favor," said Ezra. "You
satyrs are all after one thing."
         "I wonder 'bout you..."
         "Jed, we have important things to
discuss right now," said Ezra. "Oil Slick, what
do we do next?"
         Xak-xak opened a map and looked it
over. "Well... there's a city across the
woodland that I'd like to look at, I suppose.
Rion Grade, it's called."
         "Great," said Ezra. "Once Dusty gets
back from the store, we'll saddle up for Rion

         Harakath, lord of the Lotus Eaters, sat
upon his throne within his space cruiser,
Shadowcast. This long ship, sporting a
bumper sticker with the words “If This Ship’s
a-Screamin’, Don’t Come a-Beamin’”, was
named by some very desperate lotus eaters
who couldn’t think of a good name until they
realized, “Hey, this ship casts shadows!”
Hence the name.
         A long room lay before Harakath. Tall
windows on each side revealed the blackness
of space about him, the planet Venus a small
circle off to his right.
         Lotus Eaters are almost human. Their
skin is a light green and their eyes are thin,
looking like they were put on sideways. Their
bodies are thin but tough as a result of their
diet of the lotus plant.
         "Show me my Red," he said to no one
there. The computer responded to his voice
and produced a hologram image of Josiah.
         "What is it you desire, my Lord?" said
Josiah solemnly.
         "Red, I have been scrying. Why have
you done nothing with the existing Fantastic
         "My apologies, Lord," said Josiah. "I
have been assembling the rest of your seven."
         "The Malicious Seven are useless if
they are not destroying the Fantastic Seven,"
said Lord Harakath. "Do you understand?"
         "Yes, my lord," said Josiah. "I will have
something arranged."
         "See that you do, Red."
         Harakath turned off the hologram and
took a bite out of a Lotus flower, gazing out at

         "Why don't you have your own mount?"
Ezra said to Dusty as they set out. Xak-xak
shared Monday with Ezra and Dusty was on
Tuesday with Jedadiah.
         "Yea, kid," grinned Jed. "Your not
having a mount named Wednesday breaks
our runnin' joke!"
         "Well, working with the cows, I only
had to keep up with a bunch of large,
slow-moving animals," said Dusty. "And now
you two with your pegasus and carpet..."
         The group came to a lightly wooded
area. The trees were thin and sparsely
scattered, reaching their wiry branches about
like some sort of unkempt hairdo that should
be combed over. As of this time period, that
was the best that could be done in most parts
of Venus with acidic soil, hot climates, and
ironic environmentalists pushing to preserve
the natural state of Venus and chop down all
the trees.
         "Something about this place puts me
ill at ease," said Xak-xak, passing off a stream
of steam.
         "You don't suppose those Malicious
Seven guys will try to grank us out here, do
you?" said Dusty.
         "Of course that kind of the thing would
happen about now," said Ezra. "We've just
gotta wait for it." He put out his hand and
looked to the sky as if expecting rain. Nothing
         "My arcanometer is picking up some
major magical activity," said Xak-xak, "And I
think...yes, they're mostly electo-arcatrons."
         There are two kinds of magical
particles, the negative electro-arcatrons and
the positive proto-arcatrons. These particles
represent dark and light magic, respectively.
         "They appear to be on a frequency of
89," continued Xak-xak, "About the level of
druidic forest magic."
         They continued on for several minutes
without event. After that, an event came along
and smacked them upside the heads.
         "Watch out!" said Ezra, ducking as a
swift bolt shot over their heads.
         "What was that?" said Dusty, flitting
over to the tree it stuck and pulling out the
projectile. "Jank, it looks like a twiggit."
         "Dusty, please," sighed Jed, "If you're
explaining something, you have to use real
         "It's a whatchama..." said Dusty,
searching for the word, "...thing. A dart thing.
Looks like it came from a plant."
         Several more darts shot out of the
trees, narrowly missing the group. Ezra drew
his pistols. Jedadiah held his guitar in a
defensive position.
         "Where did those come from?" said
         With a painful grunt, Jed fell forward off
of Tuesday with a dart in his back. The carpet
dropped down beside him, whimpering and
nudging him to get up. This gave Ezra the
warning he needed to spin around and
intercept a few other darts with his bullets.
Dusty twirled his lasso and tossed it into the
branches of a tree. He pulled out a small
creature that looked like a cabbage with eyes
and legs. It kicked violently and made a high
pitched squeal that sounded like "Oogy-oogy!"
         "Oh, now this is just stupid," said Ezra,
taking off his hat and running his fingers
through his hair, "How many of those are
         "Let's take a look," said Dusty. He shot
into the tree and in a moment, dozens of
cabbage creatures were raining out, all of
them shouting "oogy-oogy!" Dusty herded
them together and made to drive them all
away, their meaningless declaration of "oogy"
fading into the distance.
         "This is pathetic, Josiah!" Ezra called
out to the sky. "Xak-xak, how's Jed doing?"
         "He's alive," said Xak-xak nervously,
"The injury wasn't bad, but he is knocked out. I
think it might have been poisoned."
         "Poison?" said Ezra, dismounting and
kneeling down beside the fallen satyr. Xak-xak
pointed out his face. It bore a faint but definite
tint of green. Tuesday sat by his master and
         "Knowing Josiah, this is probably
lethal," said Ezra. "We'll have to do something,
         "Wait," said Xak-xak, "Do you feel
         The ground was trembling. Monday
reared up in a jittery fashion. A large lump
pushed up from the ground beneath a tree,
sending it falling to the ground. The earth
cracked open and a giant cabbage monster
         "Oogy!" it boomed, stomping forward,
         "I think that this goes to show that
anything can be frightening if it's big enough,"
said Ezra. He stood up and fired a couple of
rounds at the monster. It flinched as it was hit,
but continued towards them.
         "Aim for its head!" said Xak-xak without
         The cabbage paused and leaned
forward. Its leaves opened and a giant dart,
the size of a harpoon, shot at them. Ezra was
able to divert it enough to miss them with a
few shots.
         "Where's Dusty?" said Ezra, backing
away from the cabbage monster as Xak-xak
towed along Jed, "We could sure use some
         They backed right into something.
Turning around, they faced the brown legs of a
horse. Above those legs was a torso of a
long-haired man wearing a decorated poncho
and a feathered hat. It was a centaur. On his
scowling face were streaks of paint. In his
powerful hand he held a heavy tomahawk. He
looked challengingly at the cabbage monster.
         "Who...who are you, sir?" said Xak-xak.
         "Yochimo of the Ookabar tribe," said
the centaur in a deep voice, "Yochimo will help
         Yochimo brought his tomahawk up.
He brought it down over Jedadiah, waving it
over him and saying, "Heal!"
         Jed woke up, the green gone from his
face. He shook his head, than spotted the
cabbage monster advancing on them. He
quickly took up his guitar and began to play a
familiar tune with revised lyrics.

I know we just met, but you're getting too close
I think I'd like you better if you were comatose
Shut your eyes, nod your head, you will wake
         before long
Listen to my magic sleeping lullaby song

         "Wow," said Xak-xak, "You saved us,
Mr. Yochimo!"
         "That was it?" said Ezra, "I kind of
pictured more of an offensive from a big guy
like yourself with the war paint and all."
         "Yochimo wears no war paint," said
Yochimo, "Yochimo is a medicine man. The
paint is for keeping the sun out of Yochimo's
         "Oh," said Jed, "Like a football player."
         “...If that helps you,” said Yochimo,
giving Jed a hard look.
         "Why, you're the green of the Fantastic
Seven!" said Xak-xak, looking at Yochimo
through his mirror.
         "I'm back!" said Dusty, "What'd I
         "This centaur is the green of the
Fantastic Seven," said Ezra with much less
enthusiasm than Xak-xak.
         "He is?" said Dusty, "All this time I
thought you were the green."
         "Why does everyone say that?" said
Ezra, "Do I have some sort of green quality?"
         "This is spectacular!" said Xak-xak,
"Mr. Yochimo, will you come with us to Rion

         Lord Harakath was still alone in his
large room within Shadowcast. As one
would expect, he got bored, so he called up
Josiah again.
         "Have you done anything about the
Fantastic Seven?" he demanded without
bothering to say hi.
         "I tried, my lord," Josiah responded
with his eyes averted, "But I ran into
         "What were these problems?"
         "You see, I had this whole plan worked
out involving six ethereal hounds, but a big
herd of cabbage monsters suddenly swarmed
me and the hounds got away."
         “Cabbage monsters?”
         “Your guess is as good as mine.”
         “Red, I am your lord and rightful owner
of the solar system. No one’s guess is as
good as mine. Do I make myself clear?”
         “I apologise. I meant no
         "Make sure it doesn't happen again."
         "Yes, lord."
         Harakath turned off the hologram and
tried to find his TV guide.

Next Chapter: "Dungeons and Wagons: continuation 2
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