Kraaaaaaan!

By a two-to-one margin, you all decided to cut through the heavier foliage towards the northeast, and it looks like our Kai Sixth Sense training has done the trick:

You have cut your way through the thick under-growth for nearly half an hour when you hear the beat of wings high above the trees. Looking up you can just make out the shape of a Kraan approaching from the north. It is one of the monsters that attacked the monastery and on its back are two grey-skinner creatures armed with long spears. These are Mountain Giaks — evil servants of the Darklords, full of hatred and malice. Many centuries ago, their ancestors were used by the Darklords to build the infernal city of Hlgedad, which lies int he volcanic wastelands beyond the Durncrag ranger of mountains. The construction of the city was long and tortuous and only the strongest of the Giaks survived the heat and poisonous atmosphere of Helgedad.

Hidden by the trees, you freeze, ckeeping absolutely still as the Kraan passes overhead and disappears towards the south. When you are sure that it has gone, you move off once again into the forest.

(Turn to 131.)

Had we not been forewarned by our amazing brains, we might have ended up as Kraan-bait. But wait, there’s more!

You have covered about a quarter of a mile when you hear shouting and a noise like thunderclaps ahead. Edging nearer, you soon make out a clearing that you recognize to be the site of the ruins of Raumas, an ancient forest temple.

A war party of Giaks, some twenty-five to thirty strong, are attacking the ruins from all sides. Many more of the Giaks are dead or dying among the broken pillars of marble, but still they assault whatever is hidden inside. Suddenly, a bolt of blue lightning rips through the front ranks of Giaks sending the armour-clad creatures tumbling in all directions. A Giak, taller than the others and dressed from head to foot in black chainmail, curses at his troops as he whips them forward with a barbed flail.

With weapon ready, you move to the edge of the clearing, under cover of the thick foliage, and try to catch a glimpse of the defenders. To your amazement, the ruins are being defended by a young man no older than yourself. You recognize his sky-blue robes, embroidered with stars. He is a young theurgist of the Magicians Guild of Toran: an apprentice in magic.

Five Giaks charge forward, their spears raised to stab the apprentice as he hurriedly retreats deeper into the ruins. You see him turn and raise his left hand just before a bolt of blue flame shoots from his fingertips into the snarling Giak soldiers. Close to where you are hidden, you see a Giak scuttle past and climb one of the pillars of the temple. He has a long curved dagger in his mouth and he is about to jump on the young wizard standing below.

So what will it be, intrepid adventurers, adventure or flight? Do we run the risk of failing in our mission to warn the king in order to possibly help one man, or do we brave the odds? Or slightly less brave the odds with a chunk of rock fired from cover? Or screw it, a high-pitched warning, squeaked out from the bushes?

(Lone Wolf words and images ©1984 by Joe Dever and Gary Chalk.)

About Jeff Hebert

Jeff is a 44 year old city boy who has somehow found himself located in Colorado, fulfilling his lifetime dream of making a living drawing super-heroes all day.

8 Responses to Kraaaaaaan!

  1. “run forward and attack the Giak when he jumps”

    9 votes

    IMO, a good time to catch your prey is when it is about to catch its own prey :)

  2. We should totally help him. I won’t spoil anything, I’ll just say it pays to be a good guy in the 80′s – when this book was written.

  3. Nate, quit with the spoilers — seriously, that’s a major bummer. We know you know how things turn out, but saying so and giving huge “hints” (which serve the same role as an outright spoiler) like this ruins the fun for the rest of us (including me) who don’t know how things turn out.

    Please, let us noobs enjoy the ride, or it’s not worth doing.

  4. I’m only saying one thing..In the words of a true Klingon:

    It is a good day to die!

  5. It’s awesome to see new people exposed to Lone Wolf. …Wait, that didn’t sound right.

  6. That must’ve been in one of those unreleased British versions Imp …

  7. “Tonight, on Lone Wolf After Dark, we explore the steamier side of the Kai Monastery…”

  8. knighthawk

    I havent read the book, ust my logic here:

    if you shout from the trees, the mage will zap you, if you leap out of the bushes, the mage will zap you, if you run, well no harm there, if you throw a rock seem to be the least risk to most reward.