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The Alarion Show -- With Special Guest, Magroth

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    The Alarion Show -- With Special Guest, Magroth

    Morgan announces, “Live, from the beautiful confines of the Alice Coldwell Inn of Oldinn, good evening, once again, to everyone, and welcome to The Alarion Show!”

    The Inn band plays the introductory Eternium theme music as the assembled crowd yells, whistles, and claps instantly.

    Morgan continues over the clamor, “And without further ado, here is your host, none other than the Professor of Natural Philosophy of the Anderra Academy … Alarion!”

    The Inn crowd jumps to its feet to cheer and whoop with louder applause. And as the prolonged audience accolades continue, white-bearded Alarion, with his magic stave in hand, appears from behind the main curtain stage right and motions to the crowd to settle. He shuffles to center stage and smiles at the fading din before speaking.

    “Thank you, thank you, Morgan,” Alarion begins, nearly out of breath. “Good evening, all Oldinnians and to all you out there in Elderath as we broadcast live through our magic portal, welcome to the show! And do we have a treat for all of you tonight.”

    The inn crowd oohs and ahhs to Alarion’s grinning tease.

    “Yes, yes,” Alarion continues, “I thought that would get your attention.”

    Someone yells from the audience, “Are the Leaderboards going to be split?”

    The inn crowd become silent and looks at the questioner and then back to Alarion. Alarion chuckles nervously, but the crowd becomes mum, awaiting a response.

    After a long pause, Alarion finally replies with an embarrassed smile, “No, nothing like that. We’re a talk show here, my good people. With guests! Like we always do. See how this works? Don’t you know want to know who we’ve invited?”

    The crowd murmurs. Another from the gathering shouts out, “The Devs?”

    The crowd, in silent unison, nodding their heads up and down, looks anxiously at the questioner and then back to Alarion.

    “Well,” Alarion starts with a swallow, “you know … the Devs … they are a very busy group. So, what we thought would be fun is to start starting something new with a series of special guests to our show here at the Inn.”

    The crowd mumbles and groans, another shouting out, “You mean, there’s ISN’T going to be a board split? AGAIN!?”

    All listen intently to Alarion, who replied, “Look, we thought we’d have some fun. First-time kind of fun. Aren’t you all in the mood for something like that?”

    The crowd drones, trying to overcome the disappointment of the no-split announcement. One grumbles under her breath, “The LB split would be first-time kind of fun.”

    Alarion sees his chance to continue, “I thought it would fun, for the first time ever mind you, that we invite an Eternium boss to the show!”

    The inn crowd slowly looks up from their collective rue, first at each other, and then back to center stage, each one-by-one, beginning to clap.

    Alarion smiles back at the crowd, letting the good mood accelerate before raising his stave to gesture silence. “And, if you all behave,” he gently chides with a beaming grin, “as a special treat we’ll invite each of the big bosses to the show for their own special night with all of you!”

    The audience finally claps as the announcement sinks in. Alarion shuffles to his stage desk and sits down with his stave in hand.

    “And … starting tonight, as our very first special guest, please welcome, one and all, the Demon Magroth!”

    The audience cheers and then claps. The Inn band starts playing introduction music.

    Decked out in a black tuxedo, bowtie, cummerbund, and patent leather shoes, Magroth appears from behind the main curtain stage right and approaches Alarion’s desk with his glowing axe in hand. He turns slowly to the audience and waves at the cheering mob before sitting in the guest chair next to Alarion. The crowd at long last settles down to listen in.

    “Where should I put this?” Magroth asks, scratching his giant horn, extending his arm to show Alarion his glowing axe.

    “You can just leave it on the floor in front of you for now,” Alarion replies.

    Magroth sits back in his chair, crosses his legs, and lights a hand-carved pipe he retrieves from his jacket pocket to blow perfect smoke rings. “Demon, eh?” Magroth asks, glancing askew at Alarion with a coy smile.

    “Well, that IS what you are,” Alarion stresses with a grin.

    “I know, I know, Alarion … but it comes with such a distasteful connotation.”

    “It’s supposed to. You’re evil.”

    “But you say it like it’s a bad thing. I mean, it’s a tad mean-spirited and a bit boorish coming from you, Professor, don’t you think? I do, after all, have to work for The Man.”

    “Ragadam,” Alarion answers breathlessly.

    “It’s my lot in life,” Magroth laments, puffing out three perfect circles of smoke.

    “Say, what’s with the pipe?”

    “Started a new vice,” Magroth replies, looking at Alarion out of the corner of his eye with a sly grin.

    “Like you need any more?”

    Magroth removes the piece from his mouth and twirls it in his big hands. “And if you must know, it’s Danish Estates, Denmark. Parallel universe on a planet called Earth that I now frequent. It’s a corrupting influence on me, Alarion. Corrupting, I tell you!”

    “It’s beautifully crafted.”

    “Indeed! The best. And I’ve been around this entire universe two or three times already, spanning countless millennia, and this is the cream of the crop for a good toke.”

    “What is the weed, anyway?”

    “An Earthen plant called tobacco. This happens to be a superb blend of three varieties. Simply exquisite,” Magroth replies with a satisfied inhale before blowing perfect rings.

    “I must say, it smells really good!”

    “Love it, love it, love it. And this pipe costs a pretty penny, so they say on Earth. So, while I was invisible there, I just portaled to one of their better shops in Denmark and simply took one that suited my fancy.”

    “You stole it, then.”

    “Of course, I did. I’m a demon and evil,” Magroth rejoins, becoming still while slowly staring out at the crowd without a facial expression to goad a reaction.

    The audience chuckles.

    Alarion offers up a compliment, “And … you’re the only demon boss that appears twice in Story Mode.”

    “That’s no biggie. Just a short stay on Severed Mountain, really. Only a campfire on top of that hellish cold rock. And what for? For show. Fortunately, my buds and I hang mostly at Anderhelm. Superior place with all the amenities. And Ragadam pays the lease, plus I get a daily stipend for all expenses for me and my teams. Can’t beat it.”

    Alarion grins to ask quietly, “Ever … errr … ummm … meet him? Her? … Umm … It?”

    “Oh, sure, sure,” Magroth replies, leaning forward, then back in his chair, adjusting his cummerbund. “Most important interview for a job, ever. No stranger either. Portals to Anderhelm to give me and my team performance reviews twice a year. I’d say … an above average boss, in my experience.”

    Alarion probes in a low whisper for a juicy response. “So, what’s he … it … her like?”

    “Not allowed to say much more. It’s in my NDA,” Magroth replies as he rotates a mug next to his arm. “Say, what is this, anyway?”

    “It’s tea,” replies Alarion, disappointed.

    “I see,” Magroth says as he sips from the mug and then shudders. The audience laughs.

    “Come, on. It’s not that bad,” Alarion retorts.

    Magroth looks around the Inn. “I like what you’re doing here. And that green room out back? Good idea!”

    “It’s staging area for our guest to relax and nosh before they come out.”

    “Thought so. They do that on Earth, too. And I love the live snacks,” Magroth proffers, puffing a circle, looking up at the ceiling. “They do NOT do that on Earth.”

    Alarion looks puzzled. “Wha … what live snacks?”

    Magroth’s eyes level surprise at Alarion’s surprise to respond matter-of-factly, “Why, the merloks, of course.”

    “Merloks?” Alarion gasps, turning pale, edging forward on his desk. “You ate a merlok?”

    “No,” answered Magroth.

    “Whew,” Alarion breathed, as he sat back in his chair, at ease.

    “I ate three,” Magroth added. “Mmmm … merlok legs. So succulent with that hot, green dipping sauce you have back there.”

    Alarion searches for a response, “They were the freakin’ food service crew!”

    “Oops,” Magroth responds embarrassingly with a fist bump to his chest to stifle a burp.

    The audience howls with laughter.

    Alarion gains his composure, and taps his glowing stave three times to the floor. A green, bright flash of light resurrects the three merloks. “Take the rest of the night off,” he gently scolds them under his breath as the green toads scamper off stage.”

    The audience claps for a long time.

    “That was nice of you,” Magroth finally says, “but I suddenly feel hungry again.”

    “I reconstituted them from the mush in your stomach.”

    “Okay, okay,” Magroth says, “I’ll revisit that green room before I leave to refuel. And I promise I won’t eat anything alive.”

    Alarion sighs. “So, you’re looking rather spiffy tonight, if I must say. Earthen costume, I presume. Is that where you’re off to?”

    Magroth sips the tea and scowls through his big teeth at the inn crowd. The audience, again, laughs.

    “Not sure why I like to dress up, but maybe it’s because I like to learn about other cultures. But, it’s interdimensional travel to my favorite stomping grounds, I’m afraid. We’re taking Elban’s space vessel.”

    Alarion pauses grimly before responding, “Oh, that’s too bad.”

    “Tell me about it,” Magroth grouses. “But there’s no other way there. And the Big Fat Lizard still captains the friggin’ thing. Captain my ass. Everyone gets motion sickness with the way tubby drives at super-light speed.”

    Both claim in unison with a faux smile to the audience, “Nothing can travel faster than the speed of light! Nothing can travel faster than the speed of light! Nothing can travel faster than the speed of light!”

    They laugh uncontrollably with the audience for a full minute before Alarion starts hacking.

    “You okay?” asks a worried Magroth.

    “Yes, I’m fine,” he replies, clearing his throat with a sip of his tea. Alarion finally composes himself. “So, why this Earth place, anyway?”

    Magroth samples the tea again and makes a scary face at the audience. There is sporadic, anxious laughter from the crowd. He turns back to Alarion. “Lots to do there. And I hear their Broadway is finally open again since that disease-thingy that started a few years back is finally under control. Want to take in a play. Not even sure what’s on stage, but I guarantee you this. We. Are. Going.”

    “For the night?”

    “No, no, no. New York City is made for long weekends, I’ve learned,” Magroth responds, taking another sip of tea, shudders, and then puffs a circle of smoke from his lips.

    “Sounds nice,” Alarion says with a smile. “We?”

    “Yeah,” Magroth sighs, “Fun weekend for me? No. Necessary weekend for me? Yes.”

    “Meaning? Working vacation, I’m guessing?”

    “Taking the West and East Tower Summoners with me,” Magroth drones on. “You know they’ve been holed up at Anderhelm for the past dozen or so ANBs. Dying, resurrecting, fighting; dying resurrecting fighting; dying, resurrecting, fighting. You know the drill.”

    Alarion replies pensively, “We’ve all been there, done that.”

    “But I gotta tell ya, Alarion,” Magroth continues, “ya gotta give the working help a break from the monotony now and then. Otherwise, their constant moaning and groaning will wear you down to a nub.”

    “I know, I know. I hear the very same thing from every mage, bounty hunter, and warrior that passes through town, as well.”

    Magroth continues after a soothing puff from his pipe, “Hey, I tell them, I didn’t write the same-ol’, same-ol’ gameplay script. We’re all in this together. When a friggin’ Eternium champion arrives at our gate, WE have to act. Team WE! No ‘I’ in team! It’s WE! Get it?”

    “And … do they … get it?”

    “Kids today. A constant battle, excuse the pun. Some are thinking of quitting on me, saying they can find better work and pay elsewhere.”

    “Then what?”

    “My hands are tied. And believe it or not, I’m not even the hiring manager. Ragadam’s chief operating officer is. But I … ME … I have to take care of the whole lot day-to-day!”

    “Unfair, in a way. But then, again, you are a boss. So, you’ll be back in a few days?”

    “Sure. I’ll have one of my stunt doubles acting in my place. He’s good. I mean, really good. And extras will fill in for the Summoners. Nobody will even know we’re gone. And with that, I’ve got to get going, Alarion, since Elban’s huge ship is double-parked.”

    “Double-parked?” Alarion asks.

    “Earth term, sorry. Taking up a lot of liquid space-time.”

    They both touch cheeks and proclaim in unison to the audience, “There is no aether! There is no aether! There is no aether!”

    Everyone in the Inn laughs for a long minute.

    “Well, best to you and your team on your trek,” Alarion says as Magroth rises from his guest chair, picks up his glowing axe, and waves to the howling crowd before disappearing behind the main curtain, stage right.

    “Maybe we’ll do tea again when I get back,” Magroth yells from behind the curtain.

    The audience laughs.

    Alarion rises from his chair and concludes the evening with, “Well that’s it from the Inn, tonight. As I said earlier, we’ll be inviting each of the other bosses to the show. So you all stay tuned. We’ll see you all again really soon! Good night!”

    The Inn band plays the Eternium closing theme music as the crowd exits.
    “Fall down seven times, get up eight.” – Japanese proverb

    LOL! Very clever and amusing. Love the bit about the Merloks. I do hope we will see interviews with the other Bosses on the Alarion Show. Just make sure to fireproof the studio for the dragons.


    • WarriorSeven
      WarriorSeven commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks. TBD should be next, but I have to wait for my writing muse to return to complete a skit.

    • WarriorSeven
      WarriorSeven commented
      Editing a comment
      You can't rush art!

    Where did Magroth get a tux his size? To quote the late great Warren Zevon, "I'd like to meet his tailor".


    • WarriorSeven
      WarriorSeven commented
      Editing a comment
      Custom tailoring. The parallel universe is a big place!

    Ha ha ha... Amazing!


      Loved it. Very clever, funny, short story. Merlocks...*chuckle*. Well done.