Erik  and Marko in The Kidnap (2_110)

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Birthday Greetings

Anna M.C.
Vector's Monocle


From: Erik Greystone
Subject: Belated Birthday Greetings to Tammy and Mo the Creative One

Dear Tammy,

I'm afraid that I have only a few moments to spare; Marko and I have stopped at the Winslow Tavern just long enough to replenish our supplies, and then we must resume our quest to rescue my sister, the fair Princess Dawn. *Sigh* Far be it from me to say I told you so, but I DID warn her. "Marry a Blackpool? Are you out of your mind? Bad things happen whenever Blackpools are involved," I said. "Oh, but Erik dear, we could bring peace to the kingdom, and sweet Galen is DIFFERENT," she said. And what do I know, anyway? After all, who am I? I'm just her older brother, who's been battling the forces of Blackpool for years, who's had ample opportunity to witness the depths of their depravity. Why listen to me, of all people?

Not that I'm bitter.

I swear, Mo, when I get my hands on you I'll . . . I'll . . . I'll give you a darn good talking-to, and no mistake. All right, I know it's lame. But hey, I'm the hero. I can't go around bullying helpless women, however heinous and twisted their behavior might be.

But I've strayed from my point. At any rate, the Winslows have informed me that you've just joined the mailing list, Tammy, and, like Debbie before you, you display the integrity and good taste to ally yourself with the forces of Greystone (and, more particularly, with yours truly). I welcome your support! We paragons of virtue need all the support we can get, nowadays. Seems like everyone goes for the flashy stuff, like black leather and monocles. I even harbor an uneasy suspicion that my sister Xena fails to regard Dirk with quite the measure of righteous hatred that, by rights, she should. *Sigh*. Ah, well, at least she loathes Galen. That's something, anyway.

More importantly, Tammy, the Winslows tell me that you've just celebrated a birthday, on September 19, to be exact. So sorry I failed to get the word in time to convey my best wishes in a more timely fashion. Even worse, I'm afraid that it looks as if I'll be tied up with this rescue business indefinitely. Otherwise, I'd have been delighted to invite you to share a drink with me at the Winslows' excellent establishment in celebration of your recent birthday. As it is, I'm afraid I'll have to offer you a raincheck. However, I assure you that as soon as Dawn is safe and sound, I'll make good on my offer. Unlike SOME princes we know, I would never stand up a lady.

Speaking of belated birthday greetings, though, I've just learned an interesting fact from Marko. It seems that he was talking to some of the forest creatures that Mo the Creative One has been possessing lately (I'm sorry, but that woman really needs to get a hobby) in the hopes of obtaining some clue as to her whereabouts, and they mentioned that apparently it was Mo's birthday on August 25. Because she is such an stern and evil being, who shuns any hint of social frivolity, the date was never listed on any of the royal calendars. Since learning this, however, I've had an idea. Perhaps if we all wished her, along with Tammy, a happy belated birthday, we might awaken long-dormant feelings of humanity, of kinship with her fellow man, and, if only for a moment, transcend her self-imposed exile into evilness. Perhaps we might soften her adamantine heart just enough that she might consider freeing poor Dawn from her imprisonment. Perhaps, deep down under that hard shell of evil, she's actually a lonely soul, desperate for someone to reach out and discover the good in her.

Then again, maybe she's just really, really evil.

It can't hurt to try, though. The Gods know Marko and I haven't had any luck yet. All we've found is some half-crazed black knight in dented armor wandering around, shrieking that "it's only a flesh wound." This kingdom gets weirder by the day.

Until we meet again,

Prince Erik Greystone


From: Our Listian Vector
Subject: A Birthday Greeting for MO

Dearest Mo,

When I woke up this morning, it had hit me like a bolt of lightning. Well, actually it *was* a bolt of lightning. A not-too-gentle reminder from Larry the lightning hawk, telling me that today was your birthday and I had best get out of bed and send my regards.

Recently, I had sent our favorite warrior princess a present to celebrate the happy day of her entering this world. I was slightly disappointed that she had decided to bury it under some floorboards. I suppose I'll just be more selective as to whom I give presents to in the future....

Which brings me to the gift that I have made for you this year. I've created something very special for you and I just know that you'll want to use it all the time. It may look like a child's rag doll... Well it is really, I had to.. er.. *obtain* one for the purposes of the spell...

Anyway, it is a *good luck* charm. :-)

To be more precise, it's more of a *curse spell* done in reverse. I just don't really know many *good luck* incantations. They are not my forte. But I'm sure that the results will be very much the same.

Hope that this day is full of good fortune for you.

Your favorite love squid,



From: Dirk Blackpool
Subject: Birthday Greetings for MO


Well, dear sister, it seems it's your birthday once again. I'm sure you'll be up to your usual antics. Unfortunately, Geoffrey and I will be detained and unable to attend the celebration. He's still recovering from some questionable mushrooms he ate at the tavern recently. *smirks ever so slightly*

Therefore, Vector has agreed to be our representative from Karteia - he will attend your gathering in our place. Oh, and he's written up something for you as well. *drops a scroll on the table* All right then. I'm off to play a game of Tyranny with Geoffrey. Perhaps that will cheer him up. If not, there's always the North Tower. *winks*


Prince Dirk Blackpool

(the scroll reads as follows)

Salutations, Mo -

Since you so enjoyed my little gift of last year (though I hardly think burying it under the floorboards is an appropriate storage solution) I thought I'd work something up for you again. On a lovely, humid Karteia night I conjured a horse of a different color, so to speak. (Do try to keep Galen away from it - his "luck" with horses would ensure its untimely death, I've no doubt of it.)

A black unicorn. For you. It's not a marauder yet, but it's teachable. With an already adorable vicious streak. I'm sure you'll work wonders with him. I've left him for you to name, of course. And, since it's rather difficult to wrap such a present, I'll have to send him along via Aperans Express. They wisely chose to work with me on this difficult delivery and have promised that he will arrive in excellent condition. I'm not so sure about the delivery person, but that's hardly my problem.

So, enjoy. And I look forward to seeing you at your celebration. I'll wear my best velvets for you, of course.


Your Former Tutor
The Wizard Vector


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