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Robert Elvis Slade
Issue 2, Story 2
Robert Elvis Slade Story 1

A tall thin male caucasion in his young 20’s—perhaps Chris with blonde hair and a different nose--Robert Elvis Slade is an automechanic, a civilian; and he versed out trying to install a new car stereo, so he’s got an aversion to electronic gadgets.  He’s got the largest tool chest which can be carried with one hand, and is physically very strong.  He’s always got a stick match in his mouth—the strike anywhere large kitchen match type—a throwback to when he use to smoke.  His flannel shirt and overalls are heavily spotted with grease stains which have not washed out, and he’s got a hat—sports-type, usually on catcher-style, sometimes sideways.  It doesn't have a logo, but is just blank.

He’s the only child of his mother’s second marriage, with two older half-siblings.  Mom is twice widowed--Dad died of "failed diet" (ask Jim), sounds somewhat ridiculous but will add character.
Dark entrance.  Slade:  "Ouch, that hurt!"  "Where am I now?" Match lights, giving glimpse of hands and startled face, wolf head just coming into the light, teeth bared, growling "Arrrrrrrghh".
Dark, but for last glimmer of falling match.  "Yow!  Down boy!  What in the name of Loki is this beast?" Torch lights and sweeps across screen, lighting part of the scene.  "How about a little fire, scarecrow?"  "And I thought a self-lighting blowtorch was a gimmick."
Torch motion in a different direction.  "Man, you must be starved"  "Most dogs'll run from a flame--but you've been burned a couple times now." Battle ends.  "Finally."  "Now let's get a decent light, and see what you were."
Dark again.  "Here's the flashlight--put the torch away."  "Guess it's good I was trying to pirate those machine parts when I was killed." Flashlight is lit; we see Slade putting a fresh match in his mouth.  "First things first.  "Now, lets see about you."
Flashlight shines on three-headed dog lying on stone floor.  "Shades of Cerebus!  It's worse than I thought!..."  "But I don't remember Hade's being made of paving stone...." Light moves to shine up wall.  "No, I'm in some kind of stone building--a basement, from the look of it."  "By Thor, I believe I've versed into someone's dungeon game--no, that's just too crazy."  "Well, which way is out?"
Light shines down corridor.  "Up, I would guess--"  "anyway, it could be down, anything's possible;"  "but better to bet on up." Light shines down opposite corridor.  "Of couse, there's no 'up' here--so it's left or right."
Flipping a coin:  "May the Norns guide my steps." Catches coin and looks.
Walks down hall, flashligt in one hand, tool chest in the other.
This is a constructed underground "dungeon" of medieval design.  Everything is stone but for some wood and iron trim, such as doors.
"Hmmm...There's light up ahead.  (silhouetted against distant lit doorway). Enters room filled with clutter; torches providing light without flame line the walls.  Clutter is medieval junk--mostly bottles, with lamps, chalices, mugs, plates, and other stuff.  Think Indiana Jones & the Last Crusade, with more than just chalices.  "Great.  I'm in someone's medieval basement filled with medieval junk."
Taking torch down to look.  "Interesting--the bulb is well hidden, and I don't see where the batteries go."  "Maybe they're rechargable." Heading out with one of the torches.  "I'm sure they won't mind if I borrow this."  "It's not like I'm stealing it--I won't take it out of the building."  "I'll just leave it by the door on my way out."
For reference, one of those seeming junk objects is the McGuffin, the bottle containing a djinni, sought by the adventurers we will soon meet—but by the time he gets out of here, he’ll have little idea where it is.
Now lit by torch, wandering through hallway, Slade:  "This could as well be the lair of Jormungander--"  "I've wandered so far, I can't imagine the Midhgard Serpent having a more serpentine lair." Sitting against a wall.  "But I've lost track of how long I've been going, or which way."  "Anyway, I'm exhausted, so I'd better get some sleep."  "I can't keep watch--but hey, if somthing kills me, I'll wake up out of this hole."
Standing by a stone stairway.  "Ah, another set of stairs.  I never knew the earth was so deep--"  "Maybe I'm climbing up the inside of a mountain."  "By Thor, I hope not--the entrance could be at the bottom." Fighting several monsters--weilding a pipe wrench.  "I guess Odin really is trying to in...battle."  "I'm about exhausted here."
Climbing up inside of chimney.  "Why...didn't"  "they...install"  "an"  "elevator." Seated on ground, ripped carcass of some creature next to him, holding a piece in pliers and heating it with a blowtorch to eat it.  "Well, filet it ain't, but hopefully it's edible."  "And if it kills me, I'm outta here."
A large bear-like creature knocks the ballpeen hammer from his hand.  "Wha...?!?" He pulls a large screwdriver from his tool belt, "Well, try this"...
...and drives it into the gut of the creature.  "You look like bear--"  "I wonder if you'll taste as good." Trudging up stairs.  "It's not a mountain--I've climbed too far"  "for it to be"  "a mountain."
Sitting in hall, exhausted:  "Should have brought a water bottle."  "Magni, give me strength--"  "I'd have run out of water long ago anyway. Pushing debris out of the way with prybar.  "It's this way or no way."
Light ahead.  "Is that light ahead?"  "Don't tell me--I'm back where I started, right?"  "No, it might be..." Framed by the cave entrance, we see past Slade to the surprised faces of three adventurers--wizard in robes, fighter in plate mail, thief in leather--amidst a pile of rocks of a ruined castle; in the distance is a castle on a far hillside across the valley between.

He’ll start carrying tools in pockets—something in the hammer loop.  He has a toolbelt thing with small tools, and he’ll change what he carries in it.

Back to first story in this issue, Lauren Hastings Meets Father James.

Next Issue, next Robert Slade story.

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