As ever, readers who are new to the diary, please scroll down a bit to where you see the Thppgrg tag. Click on it. Yeah, that’s right. Otherwise, if you missed part ten, you can just click here. (Art by Chris McFann.)
Tuesdays. Worst day since Mondays.
So it seems that the previously mentioned theoretical prank-war has been officially confirmed. There was a chance, after all—however slight—that the flaming bag of poo on the doorstep to Level 1 yesterday was completely random, but as of this morning part of the haunted forest outside the dungeon has been heavily TP’ed, and there was another flaming bag of poo—this one significantly larger and stinkier (potentially from a yak?)—along with what appears to be owlbear-egg yolk on the door.
There was also a short note.
The note reads as follows: “Arrg, Imma git ye—and all me gold as well—ye ugly wee-little unsightly gobo bugga’!”
It was carved into the door of the dungeon in two-foot high letters, two feet off the ground, with what I believe to have been a magical, lightning-shooting axe.
This is the work of dwarves, I fear.
Or possibly a short, axe-wielding pirate.
A quick calculation of those I’ve recently wronged leads me to believe that I’ve now got a mortal enemy of the sociopathic, flaming-poo-bag-loving variety in the form of that jerk delivery dwarf, which is EXACTLY what I don’t need right now, considering all the other crap going on in my life at the moment. My guess is that he took a very short amount of time and effort to fact-check my story about that nonexistent noble grand-aunt Lady Dwarfina the Less-Bearded—who allegedly dwells far to the south in the potentially nonexistent Dwarf-Filled Mountains of Most Exceptional Mysteriousness (you never know, those might exist)—and then spent the rest of the last week coming up with some suitable revenge.
And if I know dwarves—and I think I do, considering how much of their literature I have read—we are currently in “Step Zero” of a grandiose, multistage, ever-escalating grudge match that will end only when it involves both of our families going back several generations (which I’m fine with; he will be vastly outnumbered and I don’t particularly like any of my family anyway), he gets his gold (which I’m also fine with; I do actually owe it to him, technically), and I am dead (which I am less fine with; I would greatly prefer not to be killed).
Man. I really gotta get this prank-war thing taken care of, and quickly.
At the very least, I ought to make sure that it isn’t a pirate. That is technically a possibility.
But it seems so . . . so . . . boring. And hard. And it will involve me having to talk to a dwarf, probably. And to make a plan, would be my guess.
And then follow through on the plan. Ugh.
This stupid prank-war—which I somehow doubt will end any time soon—is a problem for me, because I’m now under much more intense scrutiny at work, and also I have an elf-baby to worry about, and I also really need to get around to writing a note to Shaendralya asking her for money, which could potentially solve at least one of my other problems.
Oh, and I need to come up with a title for that rock-opera I’m allegedly working on, as well as actually write the thing, because it turns out that Assistant Manager Stonnehyldd the Super-Smart Stone Golem was not just being polite when she said she wanted to see it.
She’s quite the romantic-comedy-musical fan, it seems. I was questioned about the thing at great length today when she “popped in” to “say hi” and “catch up” and “revitalize our forward-going commitments and, strategically, re-energize our prior output models.”
I think she wants to see the play before it’s completed, and possibly include a character based on her. Possibly also played by her. And I may have accidentally agreed to that.
Also, I think I inadvertently agreed to be team captain for our dungeon at the company kickball tournament, and offered to help with t-shirts for the picnic, in the form of (a) design, (b) printing, (c) selling, or (d) some combination of those three things.
And I might have proposed opening a small coffee-shop/local-art co-op shop on Level 3.
I hate corporate double-speak, despite my apparent affinity for it and alacrity regarding it. I guess I just wish that I could somehow reliably get the rate of my own comprehension-slash-retention up there somewhere closer to the sheer, mind-boggling rate of my own lies.
The only actual advantage to Stonnehyldd’s unexpected (and annoying) arrival was that I convinced her to “dish” on some of the current company gossip, although very few openly exploitable vulnerabilities of my rivals were discussed; it seems, after hearing about all the goings-on around here, that I am the only current employee of the Exceptionally Evil Corporation who is not actively romantically entangled with another employee, an employee of a competitor, some type of chemical dependence, or a combination of the three.
So that’s sad.
Also, I’m now up to six “demerits” for not wearing a tie to work. I think that’s bad; according to the employee handbook, ten demerits is equal to one “reverse-cranial-recto-decapi-necro-secto-dectomy.”.
Did not ask Assistant Manager for further elaboration. Also, do not currently own an evil-edition dictionary; pretty much assume that the word is a portmanteau of the term for “vivisection for undead” combined with a bunch of other really bad things.
Must remember to scrounge through Sigvald’s room for tie, or fashion one out of a few rat carcasses.