Zack: The fire brigade and a grizzled sheriff named Virgil Trucks arrive to extinguish the fire. Trucks takes statements from you and the others about your business. He is polite, but not overly kind when he recognizes Albert Gist.
Zack: "I expect you'll be visiting the Gist plantation? Well, if I were you I'd make my visit short. I've heard there are strange holes forming out in the swamp that will swallow a man up."
Steve: "Is this sex talk?"
Zack: Albert telephones his friend, a man named Elihu Winsworthy, who owns a large, expensive car that can drive you to the plantation. It arrives after an hour and you are driven the remaining fifty miles out to the dirt road that leads past a ramshackle general store and on to an old wooden bridge across the ugly Edisto river. As the planks rumble beneath the wheels of Winsworthy's automobile a shot rings out, smashing through the windshield. Winsworthy screeches to a halt and you can hear more shots popping in your direction.
Steve: I will leap from the car, brandishing my truncheon and seeking out the source of this latest ambush.
Zack: You think you see it on the far side of the bridge, puffs of smoke emerging from behind a bush. Everyone else is taking cover behind the car. Bullets whistle around you.
Steve: Bullets? Ha! It will take more than bullets to stop the Amazing Samson. I was trained to catch them in my teeth. I will catch a bullet in my teeth as I walk towards the bush.
Zack: No bullets are close enough to catch. The gunfire stops.
Steve: I will run to catch the gunman before he can escape.
Zack: You crash through the brush and discover the gunman and his gun, still smoking, lying on the ground.
Steve: I grip his skull. "Make peace with your evil god idiot. I will make pieces of your head."
Zack: He does not respond. You realize a snake is slithering away from his lifeless body. It has a strange, white diamond pattern on its head.
Steve: A snake was inside him! This body was only a ship for the snake of evil. I must pursue this snake.
Zack: You follow it into the swamp. It disappears into the thick brush. In the distance you think you see a huge reptile man swimming away from you quickly.
Steve: "Your skull will be mine also, snake commander. My hands thirst for skull."
Zack: There is nothing else to be discovered, no identification on the shooter. After a short rest to gather your wits, Winsworthy continues the drive the remaining two miles to the plantation. The huge, southern gothic mansion looms out of the swampland. It is ominous and steeped in history. A bit too much history, perhaps. It has fallen into disrepair.
Steve: "New chapter in this history being written. Entitled 'Caleb Gist, Man With No Skull.'"
Is the world ready for Staind By Me, St@nd By e-Me, and Crank 3: Stand By Me?
Finally: an advice column for the rest of us! (Who seek to enslave humanity.)
A Goon outs himself as a wizard and gets a warm reception from the rogues/rangers/paladins gallery!
Zack Parsons, Steve "Malak" Sumner, and friends tackle bizarre role playing game products that make them wonder, "What the fuck!?" From the early days of Gygax to contemporary role playing games, none will be spared.