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(TFT) The next day.

The next day.

   The next day I go to ``Little Wars`` in the back of ``Elliot`s book store``
and buy a module.  I remember the first time I ever came here.  Robbie brought

   ``We`re going to take you to get some D&D books.``  His mother Drives us.
Elliot has speakers rigged and classical music creates the ambiance.  In the
back right corner is the gaming shelf.  The basic edition,  Two players
handbooks, Eldritch wizardry on display.  I don`t know what is more
interesting about the later.  The chick with no nipples but really interesting
long hair, the brazier shaped like a letter ``Y`` but looks like it`s really
made out of two pieces of metal twisted together, or the amorphous alter made
out of who-knows-what.  There is a boxed game called Tunnels and Trolls, a
white box with red lettering that says Dungeons and dragons, and a miniatures
case with like fifty miniatures individually priced.

   I drift over to the miniatures.  I don`t see any weapons I`m not familiar
with.  Some of the poses are ridiculous but some of the archers look just
right.  I think that maybe I should start using more archers.

   ``Neat.``  Robbie says.  He`s reading the backside of the Basic Set which
is boxed like Tunnels and Trolls.  ``This one has a players book, a DMs book,
_and_ some dice.  You should get this one.``

   I read the back then look at the front.  A dragon with a preposterous curve
in its neck and fake looking wings is on top of a pile of treasure that is way
too big.  A wizard with a wand is being upstaged by his own clothes.  A
warrior in plate mail shooting an arrow at the dragon.  The way the plate mail
fits together actually looks interesting.  The sticker on the side says the
price is $15

   ``Alright.``  I say.  Robbie`s mom drives us back.  Robbie and I open it up
and start looking through it.

   ``Oh.  It only goes up to the 3rd level.``  He says.

   I have found a picture.  A side view diagram of a dungeon.  It shows the
depth of each layer and the height of the rooms.  I`m entranced.

   ``I suppose it`s enough to get started though.``  Robbie realizes I`m
somewhere else.  He moves over and looks at the picture.

   ``Neat.``  Robbie says.

   Shafts connect  different levels.  I look down at the bottom level.  Just a
white square shape set in the dark earth.  A symbolic marker really.  I wonder
what is down there.  Robbie`s second level involved a dungeon war, and wealth
hidden in the form of livestock.  I wonder what new meaning each of these
deeper levels will have.  I can`t wait to start reading the whole thing to
find out.

   This visit at Elliot`s ``Little Wars`` the section is much expanded.
Twelve dollar players handbooks, and Monster Manuals, a whole shelf.  A few
fifteen dollar Dungeon Master Guides.  A selection of Traveler booklets.  A
back wall with about 200 individually priced miniatures.

   Modules.  The Hill Giants, Teagle manor, City State of the Overlord, and
the Village of Hommlet.  By far, the one with the best cover art is the
Village of Hommlet.  They symbol on the armor and shields reminds me of the
Lord of the Rings.  The castle looks like it is drawn by someone with at least
a passing knowledge of architecture, unlike Teagle Manor.  But best of all,
there is a giant anatomically correct crawfish.

  I buy it.

   I get it home and devour it so thoroughly I almost have it memorized.  It
is, not just a dungeon either.  It has a whole village too.  It is logical,
detailed, and makes sense.  The reason the local wizard wants Heros is he is
too busy building his new castle to clean out the cursed temple himself.  Each
farmer has secret money, and it even tells where they hide it.  And there is a
section on what the bad guys will do, after the players leave the dungeon.
Hell, this isn`t a module.  It`s a whole campaign.

   It`s marked T1 too, which means it`ll be a series like the Giants.  I can
see it now.  The next one will be a town with a forest, a hillside, a
grassland, and a swampy dungeon.  And the one after this will be a city, a
swamp, and a dungeon.  Man this artwork is really great.  Look at the detail
on how that front gate is smashed in.  I wish I could draw like this.

David Michael Grouchy II

When your life is on the gotake your life with you.
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