Date   : 02/10/2005    Duedate: 02/23/2005


DM-56    TURN-370

This Weeks Top Honors


(56-3748) [18-22-0,87]

Chartered Recognition Leader   Unchartered Recognition Leader

HEDGEHOG                       MECHANISM
REDHORSE (207)                 TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)
(56-3748) [18-22-0,87]         (56-3796) [6-3-1,82]

Popularity Leader              This Weeks Favorite

BITTER VETCH                   MACHINE
BAD APPLES (187)               TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)
(56-3762) [18-15-0,69]         (56-3795) [6-3-0,78]



Team Name                  Point Gain  Chartered Team
1. ARNIE'S ARMY (404)          57
2. PUNCH-OUT! (411)            37      YIELD (405)
3. BAD APPLES (187)            19      Unchartered Team
4. TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)      14
5. REDHORSE (207)              10      PUNCH-OUT! (411)

The Top Teams

Career Win-Loss Record           W   L  K    %  Win-Loss Record Last 3 Turns    W  L K
 1/ 1*PUNCH-OUT! (411)          30  10  4 75.0   1/ 1 REDHORSE (207)            9  6 0
 2/ 2*ARNIE'S ARMY (404)        11   5  1 68.8   2/ 3*ARNIE'S ARMY (404)        8  1 1
 3/ 0*TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)    14  11  1 56.0   3/ 2*PUNCH-OUT! (411)          5  5 1
 4/ 3 YIELD (405)               19  19  3 50.0   4/ 4 BAD APPLES (187)          4 11 0
 5/ 4 REDHORSE (207)           394 453 14 46.5   5/ 0*TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)    1  1 0
 6/ 5 BAD APPLES (187)         340 461 14 42.4   6/ 5 YIELD (405)               1  5 0

    '*'   Unchartered team                       '-'  Team did not fight this turn
   (###)  Avoid teams by their Team Id          ##/## This turn's/Last turn's rank

                                    TEAM SPOTLIGHT

             + ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ A Darque Tale #1 ]H[ + ---:--- + ]H[ +

In the Spirit Land:

     Magic operated differently in the Spirit Land than it did in the everyday world.
In some ways, it was much better here; the decay of the Arcanum of Ghea did not reach
this place, or was less advanced here.  Master Darque floated along with little
effort, easily keeping pace with his two servants.  But in other ways...it was
strange.  There were nuances, almost flavors, in the magical currents that permeated
the Spirit Land which were unlike any others he had encountered, even in the demonic
realm of his birth.  They tempted him to explore, which would be unwise at this time.
Better to nail down the strange sigil before the details faded from his mind.  And
they WOULD fade, he could sense them trying to even now, as though the sigil itself
was a living thing that struggled to escape.  He tightened his mental grip on it,
ignoring the flashes of...not pain, exactly, but something that a fully human wizard
might experience as pain.  Heat and light and a cutting edge, but his half-demon
nature created a wall of glass between those flashes and his mind.  His thin mouth
curved in a smile.  He would not be defeated by a mere sigil!
     Behind him, Sidon panted.  Or maybe it was Tyre.  "Have to stop and rest, boss!"
     "No point," the other dwarf said.  He sounded strained but wasn't breathing
hard.  "I've heard about this place.  Things aren't real here, sort of.  Can't eat or
drink, and we're not really breathing, even, I bet, just panting 'cause we think we
     "That is true, Sidon.  We move air in and out because it feels right to do it,
and because we can't talk otherwise, but our bodies derive no benefit from it."
Darque glanced around at his followers.  "You cannot rest until we exit the Spirit
Land, Tyre.  Then, yes, you will be truly tired.  Here...you just know you SHOULD be
tired, and so you believe it."  He shook his head.  "That is unwise.  You can die of
an illusion, if you believe in it."
     Tyre scowled.  "I'm not really tired now?  But we've been running...it must've
been miles!"
     "Fewer miles than if we'd stayed in the daylight world, isn't it?" Sidon asked.
"That's why we CAME this way."
     "We would have been days on the road if we'd stayed on horseback," Darque
confirmed.  He barely repressed a shudder.  Such a crude way to travel!
     As though sensing his distraction, the sigil fixed in his memory shivered and
began to fray around the edges.  He turned his will upon it and clarified the image,
wrestling with the slippery thing.  It was outrageous that a mere thing should resist
so, and exceedingly clever, as well.  Once he had the sigil firmly bound to magical
parchment, so that he didn't have to watch it constantly, he would find out who had
created such a tricky symbol.  That skill, that ability to imbue a symbol with
pseudo-life, would be a useful addition to his repertoire.
     "Maybe we should break our journey at Rocanis?" Sidon said.  "Get out of the
Spirit Land, rest, eat, drink, then return to complete the journey.  That way we
won't be totally wiped out when we get to Xochithlan."
     Darque frowned.  It would mean lost time.  A wasted hour or two, at the least.
Working with ordinary mortals had many such tedious interludes, but...there were
compensations.  Neither Sidon nor Tyre would even think of challenging his authority,
a loyalty he could not have expected from any demonic entity.  An hour or two
occasionally was not a bad price to pay for loyalty.  He turned his head to agree.
And was knocked seven feet sideways by something charging into him.
     He whirled.  His protective spells prevented damage, but such an attack was 
still not to be tolerated.  He spared an irritated thought for his bodyguards.  He
could hear them fighting now, but had they been paying attention, had they seen the
attack coming and warned him?  No, they'd been complaining!  He'd deal with them
later.  For now--
     What were these things?  There were a half dozen of them, and they seemed to be
a blend of human and animal, with the heads of animals--horses, bulls, dogs.
Ferocious, apparently fearless in combat, but their attack was strictly physical.
Easy meat, even with the reduction in available power due to the decay of the
Arcanum.  (Not that HE was dependent on the Arcanum for his power, but the magical
field of Ghea was the medium of transmission as well as the source of power in this
world.)  He slew a horse-headed figure with his first blast of power.  By all the
devils in hell, it felt GOOD to use his power freely!  Not to worry about alerting
the Grey Witch to his presence, or antagonizing fellow managers by killing off their
cherished warriors, or getting himself into political problems with the humans of
Ghea who were understandably afraid of someone so different and so much more powerful
than they.  He turned a bull-head into a torch.  How could anyone burn here when all
biological processes were in stasis?  But the bull-headed creature flamed.  A third
creature, eyes rolling in the horse's head, moved back, circling him.
     There had been six, where were...?  Ah, Sidon and Tyre had each accounted for
one and were now moving in a dog-head.  These two were the only ones left standing.
     "Hold!" Master Darque commanded.  Everyone froze in place.  To the creature in
front of him, he said, "We will let you live if you will serve me."
     The creature's nostrils flared, showing red in the murky light.  "You intrude!"
The words were mangled by the creature's mouth but understandable.  "You have entered
where the living may not come, unless they have the passwords, and you gave no
     "Passwords!  I never heard of passwords for the Spirit Land."  Master Darque
considered declaring--rightly--that he went wherever he wanted, and gave no passwords
to anybody.  But his lust for knowledge was greater than his annoyance.  "Since when
have passwords been required?"
     "Since...we began to ask for them."  The creature sounded uncertain, and its
ears flicked back and forth.
     "We don't measure your kind of time here."  It was the dog-head between Sidon
and Tyre.  "There were things done here that should not have been.  Now there are
     "And you do not know the passwords," the horse-head said.  "So you must not be
     "Where do I learn the--"
     "You are not a proper person to have passwords for the realm of the spirits.
You are a Demon Lord.  You have your own realm.  Don't trouble ours!"
     A demon realm?  Naturally, there were many demonic planes...but the nuances in
this thing's voice hinted at new possibilities.  Master Darque studied it for a
moment in silence.  This was a commoner of its kind and unlikely to know much that
would be of use.  He could force the little it did know, but it wouldn't be worth the
effort, or the ill-will.  And you could catch more flies with honey, perhaps.  "We
did not know that passwords were needed," he said.  "We simply wished to make use of
this shortcut from one place in the daylight world to another.  If you could aid us
in completing that journey, we will cease to trouble you.  If not..." he shrugged,
and lightning crackled at his fingertips.
     The two remaining creatures consulted each other with glances.  The dog-head
said, "Where do you wish to go?"
     Another silent consultation.  "It is not far."  The horse-head jerked its muzzle
in what might be the direction of Xochithlan.  "We will accompany you there and see
you back into your world.  You will not enter our realm again unless you have the
     "Done."  Darque checked the sigil, which was still firmly in the grip of his
will.  "The three of us to Xochithlan, and we won't trouble you again."
     It was impossible to read an expression on the non-human faces, but the
creatures nodded their agreement.  "We must hold hands," the horse-head said.  "I
will lead the way, then the three of you, and finally Darg.  We will take you in the
fastest way."  It paused and looked off to the side, then turned back to him.  "It
would be best if you shut your eyes."
     Master Darque frowned, suspicion flaring.
     The creature was better at reading human, or half-demon, expressions than he was
at reading a horse's face.  "Because we will be traveling very fast.  You will become
     They all joined hands as directed.  Darque saw that his two bodyguards had their
eyes shut.  Probably just as well, if there really WAS a danger of dizziness.  He was
not subject to it, himself, and he kept his eyes open.
     The horse-head looked at Darque, shrugged, and then leaped forward.  Everyone's
feet left the ground.  The dun-colored ferns, knee high on his two dwarves, dry and
matted so that they sent up puffs of choking dust whenever they were stepped on,
raced away behind them.  The reddish-brown sky shaded toward purple.  A hilltop,
crowned by a free-standing gateway formed of three massive stones sped beneath them.
The Spirit Land analog of the gate on Spirit Ridge above Rocanis.  Where had they
gotten those stones, in this place?  He could see nothing but a rolling floor of drab
plants, no rocks anywhere.  He began to shrug and thought better of it.  Sidon was
gripping his other hand, and the dwarf's palm was sweaty; Darque didn't want to know
what would happen if Sidon lost hold.
     Another feature emerged from the murky horizon, another gateway, this one also
on a hilltop.  But this appeared to be carved from a single stone, and from above,
Darque could see that the stone was cracked.  It did not meet the description he'd
had of the gateway at Xochithlan, and just as well; it looked unstable.  Their guide
didn't aim down toward it, which agreed with Darque's conclusion that this was not
the exit portal they sought.
     The air around their speeding group thickened into haze, curdled into clouds
that were about six feet across, more or less spherical, and moving in a spiral
pattern.  Horse-head angled higher to clear them, but the clouds followed them up.
Wind came with them.  The clouds jostled against the string of people.  They weren't 
vapor, more like pillows filled with the same acrid dust as the ferns.
     Revenge of the ferns?  Master Darque fought down a laugh that might have been a
little hysterical.  In a rational world, such things would not be possible.  But
here...who could know?  He was tempted to use magic against them, but what KIND of
magic?  They were not weather as his spells understood weather.  His eyes narrowed as
he extended his senses into the magical range.  There were magical currents in this
whirlwind.  He touched one of the strands of magic with his mind.
     The sigil renewed its efforts to escape his memory, requiring most of his
attention.  And the strand he had touched lashed out like a whip, driving the winds
to greater speeds.  Horse-head wailed as they were all sucked lower.  The dust-filled
clouds pressed around them.  Horse-head's hand slipped out of his grip.  Darque
tightened his grip on Sidon's hand in reflex.  He had a very clear images of himself
and the two dwarves being sucked down to...the ground, perhaps.  But perhaps not.
This was a place where things were not orthodox.
     The clouds vanished just in time for him to see the carved and damaged gateway
he had glimpsed moments ago.  The whirlwind was drawing them toward it.

     "I don't understand any of this," Ghost Dancer said.  He stepped into the circle
with the old shaman.  "Why are we following these people?"
     Uncle Wolf did not look up from the patterns he was drawing in the dirt around
the circle.  They were meaningless to Ghost Dancer, who had barely begun his training
as a shaman.  "Because one of them is in possession of a master sigil.  I mean to
have it from him, one way or another."
     "What's a--"  The world twisted around them as the circle rotated.  Ghost Dancer
waited until he was sure they were done moving.  "What's a master sigil?"  The dust
which seemed to permeate the Spirit Land lately made him sneeze.  "And why do you
want it?"
     The old man turned to look at him.  His eyes gleamed as yellow as those of the
predator for whom he was named.  "You are not ready to know what a master sigil is,"
he said.  "It is a key to gates you are not ready to open.  As to why I want it..."
he shrugged, "I am ready and beyond ready for those gates."  He stepped out of the
circle into the dry brown ferns of the Spirit Land.  "You are here with me because it
is my duty to teach you all you can learn, and because I may need another pair of
hands in the tasks ahead."

      * }%|[-----+O+-----]|%{ * }%|[-----+O+-----]|%{ * }%|[-----+O+-----]|%{ *

                        ---===FREE BLADES REGIONAL NEWS===---

 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 508): CAT TASTROPHIE of ARENA FELINES (Garfield, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 508): AGLIBOL of DARKMOON (Bobby Bigfoot, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 502): BATTERY of STARBASE 5 (Zeus, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 504): FELIX of ARENA FELINES (Garfield, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 502): DARON EL of MIDDLE WAY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 501): MYSTIC of ANARCHY (Jekyll, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 250): ALARIC of THE WARLORDS II (Fizban, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 493): LEXINGTON of DARK GLORY (Ultraist, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 248): DROKK of WHAMMO & THUDDA 4 U! (Micky, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 490): TRADEMARK of SARATOGA GLORY (The Trainer, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 488): CLINCH of SACKETT'S & CO. (Barnabas, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 481): BARRISTER of BLITZKRIEG (Polarius, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 444): DISMAY of HELL'S PAWNS (Harbinger, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 225): STORM SERPENT of SUPERIOR FORCES (Manager, mgr.)
 DM  47 SCOMSS SWAMP(turn 220): COURAGE of LAND OF OZ (Oz the Successful, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 207): NO-PAIN-4U of EXTREMISTS (Eclipse, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 369): HEDGEHOG of REDHORSE (Mila, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 348): COOL CAT of ARENA FELINES (Garfield, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 155): CHINESE SIMIAN of K.B.W.F II (Polarius, mgr.)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 394): HERMES of MYTHICAL from DELARQ TOR (Rillion, mgr.)

                                      Top Teams
 DM   9 ZUKAL (turn 508): BLUE MOON (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 508): DREAMERS (Sleepy, mgr.)
 DM  15 MALCORN (turn 502): GREENWARDENS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  16 WILLAF (turn 504): GOLDEN GLADIATORS (Midas, mgr.)
 DM  17 ALJAFIR (turn 502): HEROESANDFOUNDONES (The Judge, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 501): THE MAGNIFICENT MAGS (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 250): LADZ OF LUGBURZ (Bum, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 493): EQUESTORS (Spartacus, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 248): THE STORMGUARDS (The Icelord, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 490): DEVIL ADVOCATES (The Dark One, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 488): SACKETT'S & CO. (Barnabas, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 481): BUSY, BUSYTOWN (Huckle Cat, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 444): GIRLS X3 (Non, mgr.)
 DM  45 STORMCROWE (turn 225): MORDRED'S MADMEN (Abraxis, mgr.)
 DM  47 SCOMSS SWAMP(turn 220): LAND OF OZ (Oz the Successful, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 207): SNOW CALL HAMMERZ (Hammer, mgr.)
 DM  56 ROCANIS (turn 369): REDHORSE (Mila, mgr.)
 DM  61 JURINE (turn 348): ARENA FELINES (Garfield, mgr.)
 DM  73 ERINIKA (turn 155): DUDS (Amy A. Airhead, mgr.)
ADM 103 FREE BLADES (turn 394): LEGION OF DUMB (Carnage, mgr.)

                                   Recent Graduates
 DM  12 RIZTAB (turn 508): AGLIBOL of DARKMOON (Bobby Bigfoot, mgr.)
                           JUDGE PARKER of THE LAWMEN (Marshal D, mgr.)
 DM  19 ZUWAYZA (turn 501): MYSTIC of ANARCHY (Jekyll, mgr.)
 DM  28 MORYA (turn 250): ALARIC of THE WARLORDS II (Fizban, mgr.)
                          RAY D AYTOR of OTTO'S MECHANICS (Crip, mgr.)
              (turn 249): RHINOVIRUS of BAD GERMS (Assurnasirbanipal, mgr.)
 DM  29 LAPUR (turn 492): LUCIUS of EQUESTORS (Spartacus, mgr.)
 DM  31 CHIMLEVTAL (turn 247): CHERRY 2000 of NUMBERS GAME (Destitute Noble, mgr.)
 DM  32 ARVAT (turn 490): TRADEMARK of SARATOGA GLORY (The Trainer, mgr.)
              (turn 489): MAY FISTAFOLES of DEVIL ADVOCATES (The Dark One, mgr.)
                          STYLISH of SARATOGA GLORY (The Trainer, mgr.)
 DM  33 NIATOLI ISLAND (turn 487): CATLOW of SACKETT'S & CO. (Barnabas, mgr.)
 DM  35 MURSKA (turn 481): RED FERN of VOLUNTEER FLOWERS (Inferno, mgr.)
 DM  43 VEASTIAN (turn 443): STILTZ of THE FAMILY (Jorja, mgr.)
 DM  47 SCOMSS SWAMP(turn 220): COURAGE of LAND OF OZ (Oz the Successful, mgr.)
 DM  50 SNOWBOUND (turn 206): VANWAFEA of DARK SIDHE (Daehir, mgr.)

                                 DUELMASTER'S COLUMN
                             Notes from the arena champ.

Hi everybody,

     I'm Duelmaster AGAIN?  Some of my teammates who have made it to the Isle never
even had to write a column.  It isn't fair.
     I guess I'll be fighting either Wishlist, who beat me before, or Bitter Vetch,
who probably did too.  So I'll only have to write just this one.
     You know who I am, right?  I'm that little girl who doesn't fight very well and
isn't very clever but just keeps on trying.  One of these days I'm going to turn out
to be very very good at something, and that is why I always act so proud.  I don't
really have anything to say at the moment.  But I am Hedgehog, hear me ROAR!


                                      SPY REPORT

     I was going on vacation, see?  Surf, sun...  But what do those bums say?  "Hit 
the road, Debby Tonte.  ROCANIS needs a spyreport."  Oh, well.  MVP award for BALD 
BULL?  PUNCH-OUT!'s proud of it after beating RIRORNI SOLDIERS and getting 23 points. 
Talk about yer big time losers!  MR. SANDMAN got smashed by GLUTAMIC, and lost 7 
points!  Don't you think the Duelmaster is being unfair?  I think HEDGEHOG should let 
MACHINE be Duelmaster for a while, without fighting about it.  I hear the top team 
insists all their warriors get nine hours sleep.  They want photogenic fighters for 
PR photos.   
     AAARRGH!!!  I HATE SPYREPORTING!!!  Sorry.  I just had to say it.  BAD APPLES 
was ROCANIS' most avoided team.  Is there some award for that?  Hhmph!  What kind of 
warriors are ARNIE'S ARMY?  BAD APPLES, an easy team to beat if I ever saw one, can't 
get them to accept an invitation!  Like, is KING HIPPO popular, or what?  He was 
challenged the most in all of ROCANIS!  He's got a 6-2-1, is that good?   
     Challenges, revenges, Bloodfeuds.  All ROCANIS ever talks about is fighting!  
Me, I'm more laid back.  What a bunch of heartless!  I couldn't believe how many 
people were snickering when KID QUICK killed CANDY APPLE.  So she had a 10-18-0, 
that's no excuse!  Fight, fight, fight.  Is that all you guys can do?   
     I really didn't, you know, study when I was a kid.  Who would've guessed I'd be 
a famous Spyreporter?  I know how much you like reading this stuff, but I really 
should stop.  Remember you guys, ease up sometimes!  Chill out!  Later, Debby Tonte  

DUELMASTER                     W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 HEDGEHOG 3748                18  22  0    87       REDHORSE (207)

CHAMPIONS                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 MECHANISM 3796                6   3  1    82       TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)
 WISHLIST 3816                 7   5  0    80       YIELD (405)
 MACHINE 3795                  6   3  0    78       TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)
 GLASS JOE 3847                6   2  0    71       PUNCH-OUT! (411)
 BITTER VETCH 3762            18  15  0    69       BAD APPLES (187)

CHALLENGER ADEPTS              W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 KID QUICK 3846                7   1  2    66       PUNCH-OUT! (411)
-CONTRABAND 3827               7   0  3    62       YIELD (405)

ADEPTS                         W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 BALD BULL 3843                7   1  0    49       PUNCH-OUT! (411)
 SHANKS PONY 3854              4   3  0    44       REDHORSE (207)

CHALLENGER INITIATES           W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
-CAUTION 3821                  3   2  0    33       YIELD (405)
-L. GLUTAMINE 3772             2   0  0    32       ARNIE'S ARMY (404)
 GLUTAMIC 3790                 2   0  1    31       ARNIE'S ARMY (404)
 ROSE HIPS 3774                3   1  0    29       ARNIE'S ARMY (404)
 SILICA 3773                   2   0  0    28       ARNIE'S ARMY (404)

CHALLENGER INITIATES           W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 PRIVET 3867                   2   1  0    24       BAD APPLES (187)

INITIATES                      W   L  K POINTS      TEAM NAME                  
 PRONGHRON 3852                4   3  0    22       REDHORSE (207)
 KING HIPPO 3845               6   2  1    21       PUNCH-OUT! (411)
 STEARIC 3788                  2   1  0    21       ARNIE'S ARMY (404)
 YUL 3868                      1   1  0    21       REDHORSE (207)
 MR. SANDMAN 3844              4   4  1    17       PUNCH-OUT! (411)
 LARGE DOG 3848                2   8  0    14       BAD APPLES (187)
 EATS GRASS 3853               3   4  0    13       REDHORSE (207)
 ROTTEN CORE 3851              1   7  0    13       BAD APPLES (187)
 DIRTY FRANK 3780              1   3  0    10       YIELD (405)

'-' denotes a warrior who did not fight this turn.

THE DEAD               W  L K TEAM NAME             SLAIN BY             TURN Revenge?
CANDY APPLE 3786      10 18 0 BAD APPLES 187        KID QUICK 3846        370         
3 WIT, 3 WILL 3869     0  1 0 YIELD 405             VEL STEELWIND 25      370 NONE    

                                     PERSONAL ADS

A six minute fight, and only one skill?  That Rirorni Assassin had so little to
teach! -- Hedgehog

Bald Bull -- Sorry to spoil your perfect record.  Where were your defenses, man? --
Shanks Pony

Rotten Core -- I thank you for the skills -- Pronghorn

Stearic -- Didn't mean to scum you.  Well, I did, but not that soon.  You maybe need
to train con? -- Eats Grass

Silica -- Nice train.  (smiling) Those look like real muscles to me and I guess they
do to the Commission guys too, huh? -- Yul

Glass Joe -- The stewards, damn their meddlesome hides, told me I had to be CAREFUL
with you.  They didn't want glass fragments in the sand.  I was supposed to go GENTLY
with you.  Oh yeah?  And who was going to tell anyone to go gently with ME? -- Bitter
P.S.  But I'm glad you didn't shatter, er, die.

Kid Quick -- Good thing you didn't waste my time with fancy bits in the arena.  I
have a date tonight, and it's going to take some careful work before I can wear a
low-cut dress. -- Candy Apple

Pronghron -- Did you let Mila fill out your application?  Because that's the most
likely explanation for the spelling on your name.  After all, I wouldn't expect YOU,
a woman, to be that dumb! -- Candy Apple
P.S.  Rotten was going to write you a personal, probably a nasty one, but I tripped
him and rammed a bucket over his head.  He's still trying to figure out if it's night
and he should be sleeping, or if he's just got his helmet on backwards.

Mr. Sandman -- You're worse than a CAT. -- Large Dog

Rose Hips -- And what hips they are, too.  How do you get them through a doorway?  By
turning sideways?  Have you--

(sound of scuffling)

Rose Hips -- Ignore that thorny old hedge.  Privet was brought up on the street, you
know, and he never learned "polite."  That's his idea of friendly chit-chat.  Feel
free to express your opinion to him personally. -- Candy Apple

Hedgehog -- Well, you've still got the echoes. -- Deadfall

Shanks Pony -- (unprintable epithets) -- Rotten Core

Eats Grass -- I'm one who eats grass-eaters. -- Large Dog

12 January 2005
On Jhans turn number 476 (due on Feb. 16, 2005) the Second Annual kLk St. Valentine's
Massacre Kill Contest will begin.  The rules are simple; the team with the most kills
on the last turn wins.  Last year's winner was Shocking Toad.  Can he repeat?  Could
DOOMcorps crush all challengers?  Will the kLk prevail?  Or will you be the
independent manager to show that alliances aren't all that?  Come on to Jhans and
let's find out!
     Prizes are:  1st.  Renaming of a Dark Arena monster and five roll-up
                        certificates or $25.00 deposited in your account.
                  2nd.  Renaming of a Stand-In monster.
     Come on and celebrate the Delarquan way!

15 January 2005
     BR 4 is upon us!  First turn is due on 1/29/05.  Many thanks to RSI for helping
supply a great prize for the winner and those who meet the 90% endurance criteria.
     Winning prize:  6 months free play, a +1 bonus potion, a limited damage potion,
a favorites knowledge potion, a minor stat-switch prize, and renaming a Dark Arena
     Endurance prizes:  a +1 bonus potion to all teams that fight 90% of the possible
fights during the contest.
     For details, visit Talcama's newletter or
     To join, simply bring a team to DM 18, announce your entry in the personals, and
follow the very simple rule of not avoiding!

31 January 2005
     My fellow duelists I come before you bearing a sad and unfortunate message.
Several months ago our group, the Vendetta Cartel, had lost contact with one of our
friends.  Since he was in contact or correspondence on an almost daily basis there
was concern amongst us.  With some research two of our members discovered why contact
was lost with him.
     On November 10, 2004, Richard Hammes was taken from us in a senseless act of
violence during a robbery attempt at a friend's store where he sometimes worked.  He
was watching the store so his friend could go home to tend to his son who had taken
ill.  You may have known Rich as Abarsis, The Slaughter Priest ; richh10 on the RT;
or gameogre on the Duel2 messageboard.  You may not have known that he spent 13 years
serving the United States in the Navy.
     Rich dearly loved this game and all it encompassed.  He may not have been the
best or most experienced manager but he loved to interact with others and was quick
to offer advice whenever anyone asked for help.  He was always kind and gracious and
tried to strengthen our game, often by helping new players feel welcome or give them
a chance to compete.  With his prolific posting I know that I am simply speaking the
obvious about what he did for our game.  Many, like me, were drawn to him, perhaps
for his kind nature or his sense of humor, and it appears he lived his life as he
played this game.  Always willing to help or do right by others.
     I realize that he had many friends outside the VC so I will include the link to
the news story in case any of his other friends would like to know more of what
happened.  We're all dealt a hand in life but it's not the strength of the hand
you're dealt but rather how you play it that really matters.  Rich played his hand to
the very best of his human ability and for this I admire him greatly.  I know we all
choose to like or dislike managers but I believe deep down we are all good and
decent, in this game, and will drop party (alliance) lines and will show the proper
     Rich was taken from us all to soon and with so much left to offer the community
around him.  He spoke of a desire to run a contest on the Duel2 site which I hope to
uphold in his name.  Some of the people I have spoken with think it would be a nice
gesture to do one final good act in Rich's name, though it could never match what he
would've done within his community, for his community of San Diego.  I hope that with
this contest we might raise a little money to donate to an appropriate charity within
San Diego in his name.
     In conclusion I send a message to Rich:
     "Rich, though I'm sure you gathered this I never really told you how much I
admired you and what a friend I considered you.  I thank you for being my voice of
reason and always reminding me of why we both loved this game so much!  You have
taught me one final valuable lesson in learning more of you.  There are things far
more valuable in life than material possessions such as character and kindness.  That
nothing going on in your life means that you cannot find a way to be kind and giving
to others.  We always spoke of meeting someday and until we finally do know that you
will live on in with me and the rest of your brothers and sisters in the Cartel:
Master Darque, Kat, Bum, Sensei Jan, Maximillian, Hammer, Fizban, Firehawk, Phat
Phat.  You increased all of our enjoyment of this game, you were a true ambassador of
Duelmasters, and the game will not be quite the same without you.  A farewell battle
cry from the ZalCon:  'Confusion to our enemies'.  May your soul rest in peace, my
     Should anyone wish to correspond about Rich feel free to contact myself, or
anyone else within the Vendetta Cartel.
     Street Legal
     Jeff Bura
     The Death Squad(63) in Tobir or triumph1971@hotmail.com

31 January 2005
     Be it known throughout Alastari that Hammer is no longer a member of the
Vendetta Cartel alliance.
     A difference of opinion with another highly respected member of the VC due to my
recent vocal actions in DM 47 can only be resolved by my resignation from the VC as
of January 29, 2005.
     I leave of my own accord, in good standing with all members and with no hard
feelings towards anyone in the Vendetta Cartel.
     There was a time when I felt that my membership in the VC made the alliance
stronger.  I know that my resignation today makes the Vendetta Cartel a stronger
alliance with my absence. -- Hammer

1 February 2005
                           St. Valentine's Massacre update
My apologies, the Kill Contest starting on turn 476 in Jhans will run for 10 (ten)
turns ending on turn number 486.

5 February 2005
On behalf of the ILLUMINATI Confederation of Alliances (The kLk, CHAOS, Inc. and The
Company of Brothers) I would like to express our sympathies concerning the tragic
loss of Rich Hammes to both the DM community and to the real life world.  Surely our
loss has been Heaven's gain. -- Talon Darkhart, deeply sorrowful
                                kLk God of War, Illuminati Alliance, Puppetmaster

                                  LAST WEEK'S FIGHTS

3 WIT, 3 WILL was butchered by VEL STEELWIND in a 1 minute Dark Arena fight.
DIRTY FRANK was bested by ROTTEN CORE in a 2 minute Challenge duel.
SILICA demolished KING HIPPO in a 1 minute one-sided Challenge melee.
STEARIC overpowered LARGE DOG in a 1 minute mismatched Challenge duel.
HEDGEHOG bested MACHINE in a exciting 5 minute one-sided Title fight.
BITTER VETCH was devastated by MECHANISM in a 1 minute uneven brawl.
WISHLIST was luckily beaten by RIRORNI SABOTEUR in a 2 minute brutal struggle.
GLASS JOE devastated SHANKS PONY in a 1 minute gruesome one-sided competition.
CANDY APPLE was slaughtered by KID QUICK in a 1 minute gruesome uneven duel.
PRONGHRON was luckily beaten by ROSE HIPS in a action packed 2 minute gory duel.
BALD BULL overpowered RIRORNI SOLDIERS in a popular 1 minute uneven match.
MR. SANDMAN was overpowered by GLUTAMIC in a 1 minute one-sided match.
EATS GRASS was devastated by PRIVET in a 1 minute mismatched conflict.
YUL demolished MAGE'S APPRENTICE in a 1 minute mismatched match.

                                    BATTLE REPORT

             MOST POPULAR                        RECORD DURING THE LAST 10 TURNS     
|FIGHTING STYLE               FIGHTS        FIGHTING STYLE     W -   L -  K   PERCENT|
|LUNGING ATTACK                  10         SLASHING ATTACK   16 -   6 -  2      73  |
|TOTAL PARRY                      3         LUNGING ATTACK    28 -  11 -  3      72  |
|PARRY-RIPOSTE                    2         PARRY-STRIKE       2 -   1 -  0      67  |
|SLASHING ATTACK                  2         STRIKING ATTACK   11 -   7 -  0      61  |
|PARRY-LUNGE                      2         TOTAL PARRY       10 -   9 -  0      53  |
|STRIKING ATTACK                  2         PARRY-LUNGE       11 -  10 -  1      52  |
|PARRY-STRIKE                     1         BASHING ATTACK     3 -   4 -  0      43  |
|AIMED BLOW                       1         AIMED BLOW         4 -   9 -  0      31  |
|WALL OF STEEL                    1         WALL OF STEEL      2 -  11 -  0      15  |
|BASHING ATTACK                   0         PARRY-RIPOSTE      1 -   8 -  0      11  |

Turn 370 was great if you     Not so great if you used      The fighting styles of the
used the fighting styles:     the fighting styles:          top eleven warriors are:

PARRY-STRIKE       1 -  0     AIMED BLOW         0 -  1         5  LUNGING ATTACK 
LUNGING ATTACK     7 -  3     PARRY-LUNGE        0 -  2         2  SLASHING ATTACK
TOTAL PARRY        2 -  1     STRIKING ATTACK    0 -  2         2  STRIKING ATTACK
PARRY-RIPOSTE      1 -  1     BASHING ATTACK     0 -  0         1  TOTAL PARRY    
SLASHING ATTACK    1 -  1     WALL OF STEEL      0 -  1         1  AIMED BLOW     

                               TOP WARRIOR OF EACH STYLE

FIGHTING STYLE   WARRIOR                     W   L  K PNTS TEAM NAME                  
LUNGING ATTACK   MECHANISM 3796              6   3  1   82 TOOLS OF TORMENT (407)
AIMED BLOW       BITTER VETCH 3762          18  15  0   69 BAD APPLES (187)
SLASHING ATTACK  BALD BULL 3843              7   1  0   49 PUNCH-OUT! (411)
STRIKING ATTACK  SHANKS PONY 3854            4   3  0   44 REDHORSE (207)
Note: Warriors have a winning record and are an Adept or Above.

The overall popularity leader is BITTER VETCH 3762.  The most popular warrior this 
turn was MACHINE 3795.  The ten other most popular fighters were PRONGHRON 3852, 
ROTTEN CORE 3851, SILICA 3773, STEARIC 3788, and HEDGEHOG 3748.

The least popular fighter this week was EATS GRASS 3853.  The other ten least popular 
fighters were MR. SANDMAN 3844, CANDY APPLE 3786, SHANKS PONY 3854, BITTER VETCH 
3762, LARGE DOG 3848, KING HIPPO 3845, 3 WIT, 3 WILL 3869, GLUTAMIC 3790, YUL 3868, 
and PRIVET 3867.