Killing the wizards was too easy. Laughter located them with the
talking bones, took us there, and then we decapitated them. They
obviously weren't warned. Why were they warned of Laughter closing the
borders, and not of their own deaths? Laughter's spy obviously is not
connected to Foil, but it makes no sense. Laughter taught me how to cross
the borders. That came in handy in capturing Sand a new body. Perhaps
I'll tell that story someday. Then again, maybe not.
Ulysses Trumped me a few days after that. He said that Random
needed the Jewel. Apparently he has also informed Random that since I
could use the Jewel better, he would simply go and find me. I love
Ulysses sometimes. When I got to Random, he said that he had been unable
to contact Gerard for a few days. Ulysses hadn't been able to find him,
either. An idea struck me, then. I made psychic contact with Ulysses,
then mentally walked us both into the Jewel. I didn't need Ulysses' help
to tell what was wrong once we were there. There appeared to be a blank
spot in the Jewel's map of the universe; a piece seemed to have been
flaked off straight down to Ygg. Somehow, it looked like a recent loss.
I asked how close Ulysses could get us to the spot. The next thing I
knew, we were all there. I've got to watch that.
We stood at the edge of one of the Broken Patterns. Apparently
Shadow still existed within the blank; it just didn't register as Pattern.
Just how does one remove Shadow from the Pattern's influence, anyway? Not
that I thought about that until much later. When we arrived, Gerard's
corpse occupied the entirety of our attentions. He was at the center of
the Pattern, and birds were picking at his innards. Ulysses Trumped him
out, and to our amazement, he was still alive. Our next destination was a
high-tech, high-magic Shadow, where hopefully Gerard could be encouraged
to keep breathing.
Ulysses mentioned something about Trumping Fiona, then disappeared
shortly thereafter, and returned with Fiona shortly after that.
Obviously, we needed to find out what was going on as soon as possible.
Ulysses and Fiona wanted to investigate the spot, as did Random. I
figured if any two people in the universe could keep the King safe, it
would be Ulysses and Fiona, so I didn't make a fuss. I volunteered to
keep an eye on Gerard. Someone had to see if he had a story to tell. I
Trumped Laughter after they left and suggested she take the family to
Amber, as I didn't want her to be caught in Shadow, in case she were to be
removed in one of the next flakes to be taken off.
What an idiot I was to have let Random go. The first word out of
Gerard's mouth was Finndo.
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