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PostPosted: 08 Aug 2009, 03:44 am 
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Good news!

I've found a place where we can set up a guild HQ. It is a bit barren -- but then, so is Camp Bravo.

The light is odd. Ambient light seems to cycle through various shades, yet the sky is perpetually star-lit.

I would warn against drinking the water(?) -- but then, we're used to that with the problems we got with the Cavern lake water.

For the time being, I've asked Quinquifid not to link the area to the portal system. Security is still an issue. There is a way to get there (of course), but we don't want to make it too easy for intruders.


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PostPosted: 15 Aug 2009, 10:40 pm 
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Visitors are still coming along to Channelwood -- and it is being blogged about too. I met WoulfCat this morning, and she mentioned how she found it: http://raphil.livejournal.com/63652.html

In the meantime, I'm trying to set up my home in the Keep, including a sliding walkway to access the island more easily. Friction between the sections is causing problems at the moment, in that the later sections do not fully extend. Still, at least it is a start.

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PostPosted: 21 Aug 2009, 02:01 am 
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I've given up with the sliding walkway -- at least for the time being. Instead, I've adapted the village elevator system to travel speedily and relatively safely between the various areas in Devokan.

The Keep is a sound building, but was originally lacking in basic amenities such as power and plumbing.

I've installed a couple of solar panels to the south-facing roof of the topmost room, so that I can at least keep my MacBook Pro and coffee pot powered up. I'll try to get a microwave and fridge working there too (I hate cooking).

It was possible to salvage some dressed stone so I've added a couple of interior walls on the first floor to partition off some smaller rooms. One I am turning into a study bedroom. Before I got the wall built the chilly downdraft from the roof was appalling, enough to keep me awake at night, even when I snuggled under a thick quilt. The bed reminds me of my childhood, when I stayed at my Great Grandma's house -- her bed had a feather mattress, just like this one does.

I've turned the room next door to a private sitting room, just nice to relax in with a friend or two. Off this room, behind one of the new partition walls, is a bathroom (yay!).

Downstairs is the main hall, with a grand fireplace, comfortable seating (some with useful draft-excluding curtains, essential with the wind blowing through the grand entrance), some lovely mechanisms on loan from one of the villagers, the elevator, and a small library (but reading by torchlight is NOT good for the eyesight).

And, yes, the Keep has a dungeon, which looks frighteningly like the office Andy Legate wrote for me to use in Uru. Hmm...

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PostPosted: 24 Aug 2009, 10:58 pm 
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The past weekend proved to be most interesting -- and busy.

It started with one of Dot's friends, Miss SkydiverColorado, offering her a linking book to the Myst island recently discovered in this strangely fluid world. Dot leapt at the chance, but then started fretting about security and the fragility and vulnerability of these books. The book was to be placed in one of the Channelwood huts (there is a corresponding linking book on the Myst island, apparently).

Since my business in New Babbage has nearly come to an end, I had just given notice to Miss Bergamasco, my landlady there, of my intention to vacate the rooms in three weeks' time, at the end of the rental period. 'Ah,' said Dot. 'That means you could move into the Channelwood hut and watch over the linking book.' Dot is full of ideas like that. :roll:

Resignedly, I bundled together a change of clothes, some food, and set forth for Channelwood. Unfortunately, the most comfortable hut (and the one where the linking book is) happens to be the one accessed via the spiral staircase rather than the lift, so it took much effort to move my effects from the boat to my new temporary home. ('But, Mr Oddenfen,' I hear my reader say, 'Your own bedroom in Devokan is up a flight of steep spiral stairs and two ladders.' 'Yes,' I reply, 'but I have a private portal system that works there. The stairs and ladders are to deter would-be intruders.')

Back, arms and legs aching, I finally settled down to sleep when...

A note came in from JeffeJ5005 Lewis, a person of importance in Eder d'Uru, who organises the area where we were permitted to place a portal linking Devokan with that strange underground city. He was wanting to set up a linking book to Devokan in a new area -- the city library, he said. Could I provide the information needed? Well, knowing the importance placed on these linking books, I thought I had better comply.

He graciously offered me a teleport so we could discuss matters face to face. I had never met him before -- all our previous contacts had been via written note. His appearance was most entertaining. His hat, goggles and waistcoat would not be out of place on the thoroughfares of New Babbage. But his trousers were of the strange baggy variety that Miss Nynaveve is currently tailoring (I trust she will not be offended if I turn down any free sample she might be contemplating), and his feet were shod in enormous yellow fluffy-duck ... slippers? (I am not sure what they were.)

Still... my explorations have taught me to take people as they are. And he certainly proved friendly and most generous -- just a little eccentric.

In the library itself, there were several stone podiums, including one with a rotating gear in the base. There were just two books on the podiums. A library without books?!

Mr Lewis explained what he needed from me, and placed a pristine book upon one of the empty podiums. He then worked on the book, added a linking panel, and (in true maintainer fashion) checked it out.

'Teleport please,' came the terse message over the ether. The link had sent him to the wrong place. I obliged.

After further tinkering and checking, the book was finally pronounced satisfactory and safe to use.

This isn't the end of the story. I am still digesting the implications of what Mr Lewis went on to show me. But it might be best to hand the narrative back to Dot at this point.


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PostPosted: 29 Aug 2009, 03:33 am 
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Quinquifid wrote:
This isn't the end of the story. I am still digesting the implications of what Mr Lewis went on to show me. But it might be best to hand the narrative back to Dot at this point.

:roll: Typical male. Never finishes a job properly.

Now, Quinquifid might sound like a cold fish when he writes, and he may be from an earlier era to our own, but show him a new piece of technology and... Well, as DeAnn said to me the other day, we're all geeks around here. Gadget-freakery techno-lust takes hold all too easily.

When I first saw Quin after the events he reported above, he was hunched over something strapped over the back of his left hand, and poking and prodding at it with his right.

'Is that a KI? Show me!'

It was indeed. A working KI! OK, it doesn't have all the functions that we had in the cavern, but somehow the explorers based in Eder d'Uru have managed to get a recognisable KI system to work in this very different world.

Quinquifid explained how Jeffe took him to a particular machine in the city where he had to put his hand in a slot, and how the machine then gave him the KI. 'And Mr Lewis said we could have one of these machines in Devokan. I could have it in my kitchen,' he said in a little-boy-hopeful voice.

No, I didn't think that would be a good idea. Like many country people of the past, Quin has the habit of leaving his doors unlocked. We wouldn't want any KI dispenser loaned to us to be vandalised or sabotaged. So I suggested a better place for the machine might be the ex-dungeon basement in the keep.

Over this week, I have installed a security system so that the basement entrance can only be opened using a remote switch, and so that it automatically closes after a set time. Those who have taken the Journey should have no difficulty in finding the switch; strangers might have more problems. If necessary, for extra security, I can also set a password.

So it was agreed. I contacted Jeffe, who came over and installed the machine. Of course, I had to check it out, so I'm now in the process of calibrating a brand new KI! The explorers at Eder Gira have managed to build a machine similar to the Great Zero using the technology in this world; the calibration process starts there, using markers. I still miss the sweeping blue beam sweeping across the Cavern, though.

In the rest of the Keep's basement, I have built some stone tables similar to those in Andy's Nexus, ready for any linking books we might find. Which reminds me, I must move the Myst book here from its current place in Channelwood. I'm sure Quin would like to move back into his house before the end of the month...

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PostPosted: 31 Aug 2009, 05:05 am 
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Quick update on events over the weekend, which included bumping into several old friends I've not seen for a while.

First was Leonardo, who turned up while I was nosing around the Cavern at Eder d'Uru, seeing what was new. While I was pleased to see him, I was rather miffed when he said my new outfit made me look like an assassin. It's actually very comfortable and practical, made from supple but hard-wearing material -- ideal for the projects I'll be undertaking over the next month or so.

Then, back at Devokan, I saw EthanEver wandering around the village! I quickly gave him an aerial tour of the island by airship before I had to attend to some other duties.

Some news of Wendall: About a month ago he applied for a job with a Hogwarts institution. He was successful, and is now Head of Department of the Ministry for Magical Transportation (I think I got the name right). This includes teaching duties (his job title is 'Professor'), and he held his first class over the weekend. Seventeen students attended, and it seems it was a great success.

Over the Sunday, it was lovely to meet up with Lightkeeper, back from his vacation. We chatted about this and that, catching up with each other's gossip and discussing personal portal systems.

Later that day, when we were trying out various functions of the portal system, I accidentally broke the village nexus. Quinquifid was not pleased to be called out to fix it -- he came straight from the Channelwood hut, and was dressed in a rather fetching jade green and black kimono -- not the best outfit for repairing broken technology. However, it was soon fixed.

I took the opportunity to say that the Myst linking book could be moved to its new, secure home in the Keep basement, so guarding it would no longer be needed. Quin left straight away to gather up his things from the hut, planning to move back into his house that evening.

And I took the Myst book and placed it in its new home, on a long stone table beside the KI dispenser in the Keep basement.

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