Chapter 11: The Godfather of Fog-Gandros
The sea was relatively calm this trek, unlike the trek from leaving Emerald Kavala, so Rouvin didn’t need the seasick remedy this time around.
“This crime wave Priscilla mentioned,” Valerius murmured aloud. “What could be causing it?”
The captain’s first mate heard Valerius. The first mate was a Dwarf with gray-peach skin, black hair and beard, and dark purple eyes. He wore an outfit similar to a buccaneer, only he was a lawful sailor.
“Well, friend,” said the first mate, “there is a very well-formed criminal syndicate within Foggandropolis. The godfather of this syndicate is said to be a very skilled strategist. While he himself is no disciple of Erebus, I’m sure he would make a deal with that villain first chance he got! He will make a quick drachma any way he is able—legal or otherwise!”
“Who is this godfather?” asked Valerius.
“Very few have seen him,” answered the first mate. “And fewer still survive to tell what he looks like, so it’s hard to tell for sure. He has the appearance of an elf, but he certainly is no friend of the elves of Emerald Kavala, mark my words on that.”
“Right,” sighed the human hero, “I’ll be on my guard.”
“Fog-Gandros Island is near!” cheered the captain.
“We’re closing in on the port,” said Nauplius.
The ship soon arrived at the port on the southwest corner of the island. The four heroes soon disembarked from the boat.
“Don’t worry,” said the captain. “Your voyage has been paid for by Governor Firastratus.”
“Give him our thanks,” said Valerius.
The four soon followed the trail to the city of Foggandropolis.
The city of Foggandropolis was similar to a high-technology city in South Korea or Japan, except it was in the Greek style, of course. Large skyscrapers, built with the latest technologies to withstand fierce storms and tremendous earthquakes, made up the city. The second-tallest tower was made to house the most important businesses and industries, and the penthouse was the main home of the governor there.
It was the second tallest, for the tallest belonged to the tower-temple of the wind gods. They were the four winds: Boreas, god of the North wind; Eurus, god of the East wind; Zephyrus, god of the West wind; and Notus, god of the South wind. From atop there, the four would send their daughters, the Aurae, who were the beautiful winged nymphs of the breezes, to send messages to special people—at times even give quests to those deemed worthy heroes. Other times the Aurae would go out on their own volition for play, as long as they did not cause any serious trouble which would thus discredit their fathers.
However, even the Four Winds and their daughters struggled to stop the criminal syndicate that was harming the city. From robbery to extortion to even the rare murder, the criminals had their sway on the city. The law enforcement were all but helpless to stop them, and the stronger leaders threatened the judges and their families, forcing them to let arrested syndicate members free.
Upon arrival, the four encountered a few of the syndicate’s members.
One of them, an male elf with a leather jacket, pants and boots—with a minotaur skull on the back of the jacket—said, “Hey, we got someone muscling in on our turf!”
The other, a female human in a black bikini top, spandex pants, and boots, said, “Let’s make sure they don’t cause the boss any trouble!”
They and other criminals got out their weapons. Some were the classical weapons of swords, axes, and maces. Others had modern weapons, like sub machine guns, shot guns, and machetes. Some of them even had make-shift weapons such as crowbars and pickaxes. All of them were prepared to attack the four travelers.
Valerius got out his plasma saber and said, “They’ve been expecting us! I’m sure of it!”
Nauplius got out his hammer and replied, “Then let’s give them a good scuffle they’ll remember!”
Rouvin and Zanthe also prepared for battle.
The female human had her bullwhip ready and whipped at Zanthe, but the Nature priestess caught the whip and pulled it out of her hand. Then, with a spell, she trapped her in place with some tree roots. With another spell, the elf summoned some bugs to scare her into surrendering—she wasn’t sure if the bugs were harmful to humans or not, but just having any insect or arachnid or similar crawling over her was enough to frighten her into submission.
Rouvin aimed an arrow down the barrel of a Dwarf criminal’s rifle, causing it to be knocked out of his hand. The dwarf decided to run.
During the scuffle, Nauplius was so focused on the male elf criminal, he didn’t notice the scofflaw’s comrades sneaking up behind him. Two enemy dwarves prepared their attack. One had a gun loaded with a tranquilizer dart, the other with a large enough leather sack to catch him with.
“Ready?” said one Dwarf.
“You betcha!” said the other.
After Nauplius knocked out the enemy elf with his hammer, he said, “That takes care of—”
A slight prick touched him, followed by a feeling of drowsiness.
Nauplius stumbled over. The two rogue dwarves loaded him into the leather sack and ran off while the other three adventurers were distracted.
The remaining syndicate members ran off as well.
“That was easy!” laughed Zanthe.
“Yeah,” said Valerius. “Almost too easy…” He then looked about and asked, “Where’s Nauplius?”
“He was with us a moment ago,” said Rouvin.
One of the Aurae, this one of Notus, appeared before them. Like all nymphs, she was a humanoid-like being of immeasurable beauty. She had black hair with a light silvery sheen, tan-hazel eyes, and pale peach-yellow skin. Her outfit, similar to a somewhat modest one-piece swimsuit, looked almost like it was made of thick mists.
“Travelers!” said the Aura. “I saw one of those malefactors take one of your friends!”
“Nauplius?!” said Valerius. “He’s in mortal danger in the hands of those thugs!”
“Follow me!” said the nymph. “My father Notus sent me to guide you into the city! And I’m one of the few who know where the syndicate’s godfather is!”
At once, Valerius and his elf friends followed the Aura into Foggandropolis.
The streets were very still and quiet, as most of the decent people were hiding in their homes, afraid of the criminals about.
The Aura soon led Valerius, Rouvin, and Zanthe to the second tallest tower of the city—the same tower that has the penthouse where the governor dwelt.
“Isn’t that the governor’s tower?” asked Rouvin.
“Yes,” said the Aura. “The godfather had taken up residence there, believing the other authorities wouldn’t dare go in after him.”
“He didn’t anticipate outsiders trying, I suppose,” said Valerius.
“Don’t be too overconfident,” said the Aura. “My sisters and friends will help you as best we can, but be extremely cautious.”
Valerius and his friends nodded, and soon went into the tower.
The first floor they were on was currently unoccupied. The floor, similar to the first floor of any big office building, was a large foyer with booths for visitors checking in, as well as tellers if they were there as well.
“I’ve a feeling we’re being watched,” said Zanthe with a slight shudder.
“Still,” said Rouvin, “we need to save Nauplius and this city. So let’s find the penthouse elevator.”
Valerius went into one of the teller’s booths and found the map. He looked at the various elevators and saw the one which led to the penthouse. But it was on the fifteenth floor.
“We’ll have to take TWO elevators to the top,” he said.
“Chances are we’ll also have an ‘unwelcome’ committee on that other floor,” sighed Rouvin.
“We can take them,” giggled Zanthe. “It will be just as we took on their colleagues!”
Valerius led the other two to the elevator which went to the fifteenth floor.
As Rouvin predicted, however, some more of the criminal syndicate were on there. Most of them were humans in bike gang outfits, both male and female versions. But there were some elves and a few dwarves who decided to join the syndicate for one reason or another.
The weapons were either close range or non-incendiary, to ensure against a building fire.
“Leave these to us,” said Rouvin. “The plasma saber might accidentally ignite a blaze!”
Zanthe used her staff as a fighting staff, whereas Rouvin cleared away any foes with his arrows.
In the close quarters of the halls, the party had very little to fear of a sneak attack. And after about a half an hour, they were able to reach the elevator to the penthouse.
Valerius shut the elevator doors before more of the villains could reach them.
While Valerius and the two elves rode up the elevator, Nauplius soon stirred as he soon found himself strapped to a spinning wheel.
The godfather looked upon him with a sadistic grin. The godfather was a Dark Elf, with pale purple-gray skin, dark gray hair with a thin mustache and imperial beard, and brown-red eyes. He wore a light gray tuxedo with a bright white inside shirt and blue-white shoes. On his tuxedo lapel was a blue-black rose.
“Did you sleep well, dwarf?” asked the godfather.
“You must be the godfather of this nasty outfit!” Nauplius said in shock.
“Indeed I am,” chuckled the godfather. “My name is Cecrops Mavralotos. I am the leader of this large company, that those goody-goodies call a ‘crime syndicate.’ And now, I am owner of all Foggandropolis!”
“What?!” Nauplius said in shock. “Where is the governor?!”
“Oh, the governor and his family are all right,” Mavralotos said with a chuckle. “I locked them in another portion of the penthouse. Don’t worry, I feed them, care for them, and other necessities. I just need them as a ‘bargaining chip’ to keep my power.”
“Ooh!” Nauplius growled. “When my friends get here, they—”
Mavralotos interrupted, “I believe I am well prepared for their arrival. See, that nice man Erebus Tonadi stopped by, after I gave him a nice percentage of the money I made. And he gave me a nice weapon for the encounter. But before then, I think I shall have some fun.”
The dark elf then reached for some knives. Nauplius began to break out in a cold sweat upon seeing them. Then the godfather motioned for some human women to start spinning the wheel, which they did with a sadistic giggle.
The elevator carrying Valerius, Rouvin, and Zanthe soon arrived at the penthouse.
The three soon got off it, only to hear a familiar scream of fright. A male scream of fright.
“That’s Nauplius!” said Valerius. “Come on!”
The trio soon raced down the hall and soon burst through the office to find Mavralotos chuckling at Nauplius, strapped to a spinning wheel, with knives just barely missing him!
And Valerius was most indignant at this mistreatment of a friend.
“Turn, villain! TURN!” growled the human as he got his plasma saber ready.
“Ah,” said Mavralotos as he turned around to face the intruders. “You must be the other heroes Erebus told me about. I’ve already introduced myself to the dwarf, but permit me to do so for you. I am Cecrops Mavralotos, the godfather of this large company.”
“Be careful, friends!” said Nauplius. “Mavralotos is not a man to be taken lightly!”
“Correct,” the dark elf godfather answered, going over to the large desk. “Because I have a little surprise for you… well, not so little, actually.”
The dark elf grunted as he picked up his “surprise”. It was a portable chaingun that was a medium-light weight, but the party knew there was more to the gun than met the eye.
“This chaingun,” said Mavralotos, “uses Thunder Magic as its ammunition! You’ll really ‘get a charge’ out of it! Too bad it’ll be the last thing you’ll have before you enter the Halls of Hades!”
The godfather laughed maniacally as he started shooting about. Even the henchmen in the room ducked and hid, concerned for their lives.
Valerius and the two elves dodged as best they could, with Zanthe providing some magical protection when nothing was available to hide behind.
“This guy is a lunatic!” Valerius said in horror.
“I have an idea,” replied Zanthe. Adjusting her shielding spell slightly, she allowed an electrical bullet to bounce away and hit a window.
The other two soon saw the wisdom of her action, as other Aurae girls flowed in, disorienting the villain.
Four of them danced about, mocking him, and a fifth kept sitting on the chaingun. Though she was very lightweight, being a nymph of the breeze, it was enough to cause him to struggle to aim properly.
“Get off my gun, you wench!” yelled Mavralotus.
“Watch your mouth, buster!” said the Aurae on the gun as she slapped him.
Three other Aurae flowed up and unstrapped Nauplius from the wheel.
“Much obliged, ladies,” whispered Nauplius.
All this distraction was enough for Valerius to approach the godfather. The five Aurae moved out of the way.
“That’s better,” grumbled the godfather, not noticing Valerius approaching. “Now for—what?!”
“Hello, Cecrops!” said Valerius. With three strikes of his Plasma Blade, the chaingun was dismantled.
But Mavralotus would not surrender so easily. Using some dark magic, he created a blade of his own, using the flower of his lapel. The flower soon morphed into a dark purplish energy blade.
“I don’t quit easily, human!” said Mavralotus. “Let me see what you are made of!”
“So shall it be, Mavralotus!” replied Valerius.
The two then clashed energy blades, and bursts of light emerged from the fight.
Some of the Aurae joined with Nauplius, Rouvin, and Zanthe.
One of them, the Aura that met them earlier, even approached with a tub of popcorn.
“This’ll be a fun fight!” giggled the Aura. “Want some popcorn?”
“Don’t mind if I do!” said Nauplius as he took a handful.
Rouvin and Zanthe took some as well.
The fight went on for about ten minutes, and when there was a break, Valerius thrusted his plasma blade into Cecrops’ abdomen, wounding him mortally.
The dark elf collapsed.
Gasping a few last breaths, Mavralotus said, “You may have… beaten me… but Erebus… will have… the last laugh…”
The dark elf godfather’s eyes closed, and he then lay still.
The rest of the syndicate, seeing their leader slain, fled. Some were soon rounded up by police officers, whereas others left the city to never return.
Nauplius got out his hammer and swung it at the sealed door.
The governor of Fog-Gandros soon emerged, as well as his wife and three children. All five were human with pale peach skin.
The governor had tan-blond hair and gray eyes, and he wore attire that looked like he loved hiking. This attire he wore because he had returned from a hike prior to being captured. His name was Urian Omichli.
His wife, Zeeba Omichli, had deep maroon hair and brown eyes, and wore a lovely stola with some boots, as though she tried to combine the classical with the modern in her attire.
Their oldest daughter, Fanette Omichli, had bright blonde hair and green eyes, and was wearing various tones of orange, since that was her favorite color.
The middle daughter, Iantha Omichli, had brown hair, and violet eyes—since the name Iantha referred to a violet flower. She also was wearing various tones of violet and purple to reflect her name.
The family’s youngest child, a son, was named Ibykos Omichli. He had reddish hair and gray eyes, and wore a shirt similar to Valerius, as well as shorts that were dark green and boots that were black.
“Thank you, heroes, for saving us and our city,” said Governor Urian Omichli. “Now that the syndicate is no more, our fair metropolis is safe!”
“You are quite welcome, governor,” replied Valerius. “We are in pursuit of the vile warlock Erebus Tonadi.”
“Any idea where he is?” asked Nauplius.
“While we were captive,” said Fanette, “we overheard Cecrops and Erebus talking. The warlock said he was heading for Cumumilos next.”
“Whatever he wants there,” said Ibykos, “it sounds like trouble.”
“He IS trouble,” explained Zanthe. “He’s after parts for the Forbidden Ritual.”
“The Forbidden Ritual?!” gasped Zeeba. “That is an ill omen indeed!”
“There are some boats about to head to Cumumilos soon!” said Iantha. “There should be still time to make it on to one of them.”
Another Aura, this one of Zephyrus’ family, floated in. She had pink, almost white skin. Her hair is midnight blue-black, and her eyes were bright blue as a summer day. She was in what real world people recognized as a sling bikini, which was colored light blue, and she was barefoot.
“I’ll get your boat to Cumumilos quickly,” said the Aura. “And the sailor of this boat is a good friend of mine. Follow me!”
The reunited party followed the Aura out of the building and to the shipyard.
The sailor, a human with light tan skin, black hair, and tan eyes, welcomed the Aura. He too was dressed in a Greek sailor’s outfit.
“Hello again, old friend,” chuckled the sailor.
“Sir,” said the Aura, “these four need to get to Cumumilos.”
“Say no more, darlin’!” chuckled the sailor as he motioned them to board his ship.
The sails soon opened, and the Aura did a lovely dance that got the winds to get the ship sailing.
The people waved and gave their well wishes as the ship soon sailed off to Cumumilos Island.
"Advice is free, Alexander. Making use of it costs much more!" --Ali the bookshop owner, from King's Quest VI: Heir Today, Gone Tomorrow
Maverick Hunter D-Boy at your service!
All Hail Shadow! Heroes rise again! Obliterating everything that's not your friend!