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We was uneasy ‘bout the trip we’d be havin’ to make through Zairat pass ‘cause like the Timeless Desert, these mountains belongs to Thrym and he don’t like nobody strollin’ around in ‘em.

Before long we reached the gates o’ the Cyclops camp and made our way to the cave they stays in when the weather turns bad. We ain’t seen no ‘one eyes’ inside . . . they all must o’ been out huntin’ or somethin. But before they left, they set powerful traps ‘round the mouth o’ the cave, what Sun-Ok had to disarm before we could move on.

Shortly after she cleared the traps we found a rope what was layin’ by the edge o’ an outcroppin’ and we used it to climb down into the place below, where the vipers lived.

The snakes ain’t give us much o’ a problem and it wasn’t long before we’d killed the lot o’ ‘em and began searchin’ for the opening in the floor what would lead us to the cavern what the tree o’ shaftin’ was growin’ up out of.

We turned a corner and oh geez! Standin’ there, bold as brass was Voran, who we’d left in the Dragon Inn, kneelin’ on the floor twaddlin’ away in some strange tongue! Now I ask ya? How the hel could he have gotten here ahead o’ us! And how the hel did he even know where we was goin’?

He uttered a few words and although the voice was Voran’s, the words he spoke was icy, cruel and brutal and Voran don’t speak like that at all. So we knew straight off the thing standin’ there in front o’ us was not the real Voran.

The imposter, sensin’ we was onto his deception, lashed out at us with his rapiers. There was a short struggle, we triumphed and sent whatever it was imper . . . imperso . . . uh, pretendin’ to be Voran off to Garm!

Shortly after, the real Voran came runnin’ up to us, huffin’ and puffin’ apologizing’ for bein’ so late in joinin’ us! Barrelgore had told him where we was goin’ and he’d run all the way as fast as he could, afraid he’d be missin’ somethin’!

Awhile later, we found the hole in the floor we was lookin’ fer, and down we went, thinkin’ it led into the cavern close to the spot where the shaftin’tree’s roots was anchored into the soil.

Oh geez! Instead, we found ourselves in a place called the Dreamscape Desert! A pleasent little valley it was! We could see it was bounded by mountains on every side. The land around us was sandy and smooth and the sky overhead was clear, with a bright sun shinin’ down on us warmin’ our backs! At first, the place looked rather peaceful. But . . . nothin’ is ever peaceful fer long in Markshire.

We hadn’t walked twenty or thirty paces when we was assaulted by . . . uh, well, by us! Yup! And we was tough! I mean, they was tough? Well, I ain’t minded much ‘bout thumpin’ some o’ the men in me party, ya know? Sometimes a good wallop’ll do a man some good. Especially Walis!

But I couldn’t bring myself to go about choppin’ another Keli into little bits and sendin’ her to Garm. But she ain’t had no qualms about hittin’ me at all ‘cause, oh geez, she whacked me good and sent me to see him instead! I’m tellin’ ya the truth!

Anyways, while we’s all goin’ about hackin’ away at each other, I’m hearin’ a buzzin in my ear, “DESTROY THE CRYSTALS! DESTROY THE CRYSTALS!”, and on and on like that. I’ll tell ya, when you gets a message in yer ear comin’ from god knows where, you’d better be doin’ just what it’s tellin”’ ya to do and not be askin’ any questions!

So in between killin’ ourselves, now we’s havin’ ta run all over the place lookin’ fer crystals what we’s gotta shatter, and only Odin knows the reason why! We was all gettin’ the same message about the crystals, and while we was killin’ our counterparts we also managed to look for and find all the crystals and smash ‘em into little bits. Pretty blue crystals they was!

It took awhile, but we also delt with those o’ us who wasn’t really in our party, if ya knows what I mean!

None o’ us was wantin’ to be here no more and in a short time we found the place we’d came down from and back up we went. ‘Cept when when we climbed up, it wasn’t into the ice cave full o’ vipers. We’d climbed into the cavern what Frankie’s’ tree o’ shaftin’ was stickin’ up out of!

But we ain’t got too far in when somehow, we all got stuck in here and no matter how hard we try, we ain’t been able to get out o’ this damn place!

Me and Sun-Ok is sharin’ a little corner on one end o’ the corridor while the boys is down at the other end. And . . . when they sleep it sounds like there’s elevendy six wagons drivin’ really fast over cobblestones, ‘cause they snores! And . . . when they sleep they takes off their boots, and their feet stink somethin’ awful! And . . . if I don’t get out o’ this place soon . . . . I’m sure I’m gonna go loony!