The Eye of Argon Chapter 7.5

A sweeping scimitar swung towards Grignr’s head in a shadowed blur of motion.

Wow, the guy had barely stood up in the last chapter, and now he’s caught up to Greg and Floweryhair Saggytits! He must run really, really fast… and he’s just recovered from an epileptic seizure.

 
With Axe raised over his head, Grignr prepared to parry the blow,

Oh look, he named his axe… Axe. Yeah, Greg is an idiot.

 
while gaping wideeyed in open mouthed perplexity.

“Duuuurrrrrrr…. I wonder why that guy is swinging a sword at me. I’m confused. Are these MY hands?”

 
Suddenly a sharp snap resounded behind the frothing shaman.

“Dammit! My Foppish Shoes of Evil just lost a heel!”

 
The scimitar, halfway through its fatal sweep, dropped from a quivering nerveless hand, clattering harmlessly to the stoneage.

It clattered to the Stone Age? Is this taking place in some kind of time warp?

 
Cutting his screech short with a bubbling, red mouthed gurgle,

So, sort of like if you suddenly gagged and stabbed all the women on The View. I can totally get behind that.

the lacerated acolyte staggered under the pressure of the released spring-board.

… what the hell just happened? So an entire minichapter was devoted to this random Priest Of Evil and his quest for bloody vengeance against Greg… and they don’t even fight! A random trap springs out of NOWHERE for NO reason and kills him!

WHAT IS THE FUCKING POINT OF ALL THIS SHIT?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!

After a moment of hopeless struggling, the shaman buckled, sprawling face down in a widening pool of bllod and entrails,

Seriously, how can he fall face-down in a pool of entrails? Unless his entrails float in the air, they would be going down and unless he bent over specifically so he DID fall face-down in them, he would land… torso down on them!

Actually, how can he fall face-down in a pool of blood at all? He was hit from the BACK only a few seconds ago! How did he go from being stabbed in the back by an inadequately-described trap to being eviscerated from the front?!

 
his regal purple robe blending enhancingly with the swirling streams of crimson.

Doesn’t the regal purple satin make the swirling crimson blood just POP? I totally want that color combo for my walls and furniture! As for the carpet color….

 
“Mrifk! I thought I had killed the last of those dogs;” muttered Grignr in a half apathetic state.

“Bored of killing. It sucks when somebody dies before I can kill them. Totally indifferent now.”

 
“Nay Grignr. You doubtless grew careless while giving vent to your lusts.”

So even his flowery-haired whore is pointing out that he screwed up big-time… on the ONE THING he is actually good at doing.

 
“But let us not tarry any long lest we over tax the fates.”

Let us not stay longer any LONG…. urrrgghhhhh. I’m running out of ways to say, “that makes no sense.”

 
“The paths leading to freedom will soon be barred.”

Yes, because obviously nobody is going to be distracted by all the DEAD PEOPLE in their secret underground cavern. Oh wait, the place is full of dead people and has been for a long time, and supposedly this cavern is SECRET and nobody except the cultists can find it. You’re an idiot.

 
“The wretch’s crys must certainly have attracted unwanted attention,” the wench mused.

Yes, nobody noticed the screams and roars and the sounds of Greg slashing people like poorly-cut lunch meat, but one yell from a random guy in a storeroom will bring EVERYONE running.

Yeah, she’s a real intellectual, this one.

“By what direction shall we pursue our flight?”

So they’re chasing after an escape, and he wants to know what direction it… oh forget it.

 
“Up that stair and down the corridor a short distance is the concealed enterance”

And next to it is the equally concealed Exsit.

 
“to a tunnel seldom used by others than the prince, and known to few others save the palace’s royalty.”

… and why he stuck that tunnel in the SUB-BASEMENT of the area with the TOMBS and the BOOBY-TRAPPED STOREROOMS and the PRISON PITS OF DEATH and the SECRET MEETING PLACE OF THE EVIL CULTISTS is never explained to us.

 
“It is used mainly by the prince when he wishes to take leave of the palace in secret.”

Like when he goes trick-or-treating.

 
“It is not always in the Prince’s best interests to leave his chateau in public view.”

Ever since he TPed his brother’s palace, he’s had to lay low.

“Even while under heavy guard he is often assaulted by hurtling stones and rotting fruits. The commoners have little love for him.” lectured the nerelady!

…. the hell? So apparently this guy has absolutely no authority at all, and can’t even manage to execute a few commoners as a warning to the rest? What kind of loser Evil Despot is he?

Also, what the hell is a nerelady? And why is that exclamation mark there?

 
“It is amazing that they would ever have left a pig like him become their ruler.”

“Left?” They “left” a pig like him?

And assuming that she means “let,” since when do Evil Despot Princes get elected into office? Last time I checked, Evil Despot Princes INHERIT their thrones, right along with Rightful Kings and Weak Wimpy Rulers. For that matter…. he’s a prince. Not a king. If he’s the ruler, why isn’t he a king?! And if he’s not a king, WHERE IS THE KING?

 
“I should imagine that his people would rise up and crucify him like the dog he is.”

Last time I checked, people don’t crucify dogs. And the easy answer is: they won’t because we need a villain!

 
“Alas, Grignr, it is not as simple as all that.”

You’re just really stupid, after all.

 
“His soldiers are well paid by him.”

They also get full medical and dental, Christmas bonuses, and a month of vacation time!

 
“So long as he keeps their wages up they will carry out his damned wished.”

So…. how come they haven’t? I mean, apparently all his soldiers do is hang around bars screwing whores and hang around the palace doing… nothing at all. Doesn’t he have any damned wisheds?

“The crude impliments of the commonfolk would never stand up under an onslaught of forged blades and protective armor;”

… is there any kind of armor that isn’t protective, or blades that AREN’T forged?

 
they would be going to their own slaughter,” stated Carthena to a confused, but angered Grignr as they topped the stairway.

“Durrrrrr… I iz confuzzled naoh. I iz angry too!”

 
“Yet how can they bear to live under such oppression?”

Theis, enough with the attempts at making Greg heroic. This is the final chapter, and we’ve already learned to hate his guts. He’s a violent psychotic thieving asshole who treats women like sides of beef and kills people for minor inconveniences, and having him talk about The People and their cliched oppression AT THE STORY’S END is just ridiculous.

I do not like Greg. I will never like Greg. I want Greg to get torn to bits by the families of the people he’s slaughtered.

Crom, I have never prayed to you before. I have no tongue for it, because you’re fictional. No one, not even you, will remember if we were good men or bad. Why we fought, or why we threw up due to bad prose. All that matters is that one reviewer stood against a crappy fantasy book. That’s what’s important! Snarkiness pleases you, Crom… so grant me one request. Grant me the power to vaporize this piece of shit fantasy book! And if you do not listen, then to HELL with you!

 
“I would sooner die beneath the sword than live under such a dog’s command.”

… sez the guy who got thrown in prison by him, and almost ended up spending the rest of his life in the guy’s mines. Big talk now, huh?

 
added Grignr as the pair stalked down the hall in the direction opposite that in which Grignr had come.

Add “lack of direction” to Greg’s laundry list of faults. I may need to buy more paper.

 
“But all men are not of the same mold that you are born of, they choose to live as they are so as to save their filthy necks from the chopping block.”

Yes, people who actually want to LIVE and not have themselves and all their families die horrible deaths are WUSSES who are morally bereft and don’t have any guts. People who hate Evil Tyrants only because that Evil Tyrant imprisoned them for murder? THEY are true, brave heroes!

 
Returned Carthena in a disgusted tone as she cast an appiesed glance

Appleseed? Ape-seed? A pie seed? WHAT IS THIS WORD?! Wait, is he trying to write “APPEASED”? Hallelujah! I have deciphered one of these bizarre words that means absolutely nothing in the English language!

… and it still doesn’t make sense! If she’s disgusted, how is she APPEASED? (or, alternately, appiesed)

 
towards the stalwart figure at her side whose left arm was wound dextrously about her slim waist;

  1. Apparently Snake-Arm Syndrome is contagious.
  2. Also, I can really tell that Greg is seething with rage for the Common Man (assuming that he hasn’t already slaughtered the Common Man and had sex with the Common Woman), because obviously righteous rage means cuddling with a big-boobed skank.
  3. dextrous – skillful in physical movements; especially of the hands. How precisely is putting your arm around a woman “skillful in physical movements?!

his slowly waning torch casting their images in intermingling wisps as it dangled from his left hand.

  1.  … casting their images? Does he mean shadows?
  2. Intermingling WISPS? No matter how faint a shadow gets it is never WISPY.
  3. Why the hell is he dangling his torch?!

 
Presently Carthena came upon the panel, concealed amonst the other granite slabs and discernable only by the burned out cresset above it.

Yes, that burned out cresset doesn’t make it noticeable at ALL. Also, is there anything in this damn palace that ISN’T made out of granite?

 
“As I push the cresset aside push the panel inwards.”

“But be sure not to push it too fast, or we’ll be vaporized. If you don’t push it fast enough, the room will flood with acid. If I don’t push it in the right direction and the right angle, the room will blow up.”
“Durrrrrr… what were we doing again?”

Seriously, this reminds me of an awesome scene from a Get Smart episode, which I don’t seem to be able to find any clips of. So here’s how it goes (courtesy of IMDB):

  • Colonel von Klaus: If it’s a trap, and they cut of your escape find your way to Basil’s chambers. Behind the fireplace is a passageway that leads right to the forest.
  • Maxwell Smart: Eh, how does it open?
  • Colonel von Klaus: Well, there’s a panel ‘neath the mantle with a candle for the handle. But before you light the candle push the panel with your hand. Than the mantle will push out and the panel will push in.
  • Colonel von Klaus: [Max starts to leave] But… if you light the candle after you push the panel than the mantle will push in and the panel will push out. 

 
Catrhena motioned to the panel she was refering to and twisted the cresset in a counterclockwise motion.

… that’s not pushing it aside! That’s TURNING IT.

 
Grignr braced his right shoulder against the walling, concentrating the force of his bulk against it.

Yes, reading the book IS a lot like walling.

Where was I? Oh, and having bulk doesn’t mean you have anything behind it. Styrofoam has bulk. Whipped cream has bulk. Cotton candy has bulk. And none of them have any force.

The slab gradually swung inward with a slight grating sound.

… all that effort, and all Greg gets is “gradually swung inward”?

 
Carthena stooped beneath Grignr’s corded arms and crawled upon all fours into the passage beyond.

… while Greg enjoyed the view.

 
Grignr followed after easing the slab back into place.

And then, being an idiot, he realized that he couldn’t follow because he just put the slab back!

 
Winding before the pair was a dark musty tunnel, exhibiting tangled spider webs from it ceiling to wall and an oozing, sickly slime running lazily upon its floor.

Exhibited? “And over here we have a lovely display of vintage spiderwebs, which are impressively stretching from ceiling to wall… which isn’t actually very far. Also, we have a delightful little oozing sickly slime down here…”

 
Hanging from the chipped wall upon GrignR’s right side was a half mouldered corpse,

  1. Why is the second R in Greg’s name capitalized? Is he planning to become a hip-hop star?
  2. How can a corpse be half-crumbling?
  3. And why the hell is the prince’s secret escape tunnel being used as a dungeon?! He has perfectly good dungeons. Why is he putting prisoners in the escape tunnel? Why? Why? WHYYYYYYYY? Nothing in this fantasy world makes any sense!

its grey flacking arms held in place by rusted iron manacles.

Once again, “flacking” means to publicize or promote something.

And please explain to me why embalmed corpses that are sealed inside giant stone boxes for DECADES stink really badly, whereas the forgotten corpse left on the wall to rot doesn’t smell at all?!?!?!?!?!

 
Carthena flinched back into Grignr’s arms at sight of the leering set in an ugly distorted grimmace; staring horribly at her from hollow gaping sockets.

  1. … at sight?
  2. The leering WHAT set in an ugly distorted “grimmace” (sp)?
  3. WHAT is staring horribly at her?!
  4. Oh look, the half-naked whore is falling back into Greg’s arms. This isn’t contrived at all.

 
“This alcove must also be used by Agaphim as a torture chamber.”

But WHY? WHY WHY WHY WHYWHYWHYWHYWHYWHY?! He has a perfectly good dungeon which apparently doesn’t have too many prisoners, so WHY would he use it as a torture chamber?

 
“I wonder how many of his enemies have disappeared into these haunts never to be heard from again,” pondered the hulking brute.

Yes, let’s stop and think about the dead people we don’t know and have no reason to care about.

“Let us flee before we are also caught within Agaphim’s ghastly clutches.”

Yes, I’m sure he’ll be searching for random prisoners while all the high-ranking people in his palace have been KILLED during their crazy sacrificial rites RIGHT UNDER HIS HOME.

 
“The exit from this tunnel cannot be very far from here!”

Trust me, lady. It’s going to feel like an eternity.

 
Said Carthena with a slight sob to her voice, as she sagged in Grignr’s encompasing embrace.

“Hold me, big strong psycho murderer!”

 
“Aye; It will be best to be finished with this corridor as soon as it is possible.”

I’m in favor of breaking up cleanly with it. No crying, no emotional scenes.

 
“But why do you flinch from the sight of death so? Mrift! You have seen much death this day without exhibiting such emotions. “Exclaimed Grignr as he led her trembling form along the dingy confines.

Can he please explain what “Mrift” means?! It sounds like he’s snorting dust out of his nose. And it’s pretty bad when your lumbering moron of a main character is pointing out the stupidity of the other characters’ inconsistent actions.

“—The man hanging from the wall was Doyanta.”

… and how can she tell? HE’S DECAYED. He doesn’t even have eyes anymore? He’s crumbling! HOW CAN SHE TELL?!

 
“He had committed the folly of showing affections for me in front of Agaphim — he never meant any harm by his actions!”

Excuse me, I have to set fire to my tiny violin now.

 
At this Carthena broke into a slow steady whimpering, chokking her voice with gasping sobs.

Is she sobbing, whimpering or choking? MAKE UP YOUR MIND!

 
“There was never anything between us yet Agaphim did this to him! The beast!

Seriously, we get it, the bad guy is evil and he does evil things and is a big meanie poopypants. ENOUGH ALREADY. SHUT UP.

“May the demons of Hell’s deepest haunts claw away at his wretched flesh for this merciless act!” she prayed.

…. so is she a Satanist?

 
“I detect that you felt more for this fellow than you wish to let on … but enough of this, We can talk of such matters after we are once more free to do so.”

And with that… the whole subject is completely dropped. Yeah. That was obviously a very important and vital scene that developed the characters a lot. Does anyone have a bomb I can fling at this book?

 
With this Grignr lifted the grieved female to her feet and strode onward down the corridor,

Yes, Mr. Sensitivity. “Okay, enough grieving now. Time to head out. I’ll just tuck you under my arm like a side of beef and wander out…”

 
supporting the bulk of her weight with his surging left arm.

I find it frightening to imagine his arm “surging.” Since “surging” means to move suddenly and powerfully, why would you want to support someone with a body part that is “surging”? You’d be shaking them like a rag doll.

 
Presently a dim light was perceptibly filtering into the tunnel,

If you can SEE it, by definition it’s “perceptible.” If it weren’t…. you wouldn’t know, would you?!

 
casting a dim reddish hue upon the moldy wall of the passage’s grim confines.

Does it seem like a good idea to have your escape tunnel… molding? Oh, who cares!

 
Carthena had ceased her whimpering and partially regained her composure.

Strong female characters! Yay!

“The tunnel’s end must be nearing. Rays of sunlight are beginning to seep into …”

Yes, thank you, Captain Obvious. I thought those were fluorescent bulbs, but now you’ve informed me that they’re actually rays of sunlight.

 
Grignr clameed his right hand over Carthena’s mouth and with a slight struggle pulled her over to the shadows at the right hand wall of the path,

Oh no, not another one. Not another ridiculously contrived fight scene with a bunch of grunts only slightly more inept than Greg. I honestly don’t know how much more of this I can take! I think my eyeballs are bleeding.

 
while at the same time thrusting this torch beneath an overhanging stone to smother its flickering rays.

You naughty little barbarian, you! This isn’t the time or place for nooky! Stop thrusting your torch!

 
“Be silent; I can hear footfalls approaching through the tunnel;” growled Grignr in a hushed tone.

“It’s the most fearsome and dreaded creatures in the world – EDITORS!”

 
“All that you hear are the horses corraled at the far end of the tunnel. That is a further sign that we are nearing our goal.” She stated!

Yes, because human footsteps sound just like hoofbeats. Carthena’s kind of a moron.

 
“All that you hear is less than I hear! I heard footsteps coming towards us.”

“And I’m always right, because I have a penis!”

“Silence yourself that we may find out whom we are being brought into contact with. I doubt that any would have thought as yet of searching this passage for us. The advantage of surprize will be upon our side.” Grignr warned.

Yes, don’t shut up or anything while the bad guys are approaching. Just lecture the dumb little woman.

 
Carthena cast her eyes downward and ceased any further pursuit towards conversation, an irritating habit in which she had gained an amazing proficiency.

… SINCE WHEN? He hasn’t told her off before, so how could she have stopped talking before this?! Is there a scene missing…. NO WAIT! That wasn’t a request! I don’t want any more Eye of Argon! No more! Stop! No more!

And why the hell is it irritating when she stops talking after he tells her to stop talking?! Does he hate it when people implicitly agree with what he tells them by not talking and taking a submissive position? YOU ARE A GIANT BAG OF ASSHOLES.

 
Two figures came into the pairs view, from around a turn in the tunnel. They were clothed in rich luxuriant silks and rambling o on in conversation while ignorant of their crouching foes waiting in an ambush ahead.

… and why? Why? WHY? Why are they here? Why are they wearing fancy clothes in a disgusting filthy decaying tunnel?! Why are they wandering through this place for no reason? Why does this book suck so bad? Why are my eyeballs bleeding?! What are those voices chanting “Ph’nglui mglw’nafh Cthulhu R’lyeh wgah’nagl fhtagn”?

 
“…That barbarian dog is cringing beneath the weight of the lash at this moment sire. He shall cause no more disturbance.”

And THIS is all that they care about? Hasn’t anyone noticed that half the important people in this palace are conspicuously absent, and have been disgustingly and bloodily murdered? All he cares about is Greg?!

 
“Aye, and so it is with any who dare to cross the path of Sargon’s chosen one.” said the 2nd man.

I’ll allow Sargon to speak for himself, if you don’t mind:

And hold on… we’ve already established that the prince has NO real authority and is regularly mocked and pelted with veggies whenever he goes outside. I don’t really buy that he has a tyrannical grip on the place or that all who oppose him are unjustly enslaved.

 
“But the peasants are showing signs of growing unrest. They complain that they cannot feet their families while burdened with your taxes.”

They cannot feet their families, meaning that they cannot… have feet? Hit their families with feet? Put socks on their feet?

Ah, forget it. I’m just going to wait for Robin Hood to show up and start kicking ass, because I think we all know that nobody can depend on Greg. Plus, you know, Robin Hood is a good guy.

 
“I shall teach those sluts the meaning of humility! Order an immediate increase upon their taxes. They dare to question my sovereign authority, Ha-a, they shall soon learn what true oppression can be. I will … ”

  1. Did anybody ever tell Theis what “slut” means? It means a person who is sexually promiscuous. I’m sure there were countless slutty peasants, but not many more than the nobility.
  2. He shall teach them the meaning of being… humble.
  3. Yes, the way to get the angry starving people to submit to you is to… tax them more, thus making them even angrier and hungrier. Why do bad guys never CUT taxes to make the people love them? It would be an awesome way of manipulating them!
  4. How can he have sovereign authority if he’s a PRINCE and not a KING?!
  5. … did he seriously just laugh evilly? And the author actually included it in the dialogue?

A shodowed bulk leapt from behind a jutting promontory as it brought down a double edged axe with the spped of a striking thought.

  1. Oh no! A shodowed bulk is attacking them! What’s a shodow?
  2. Presumably it’s Greg, and I think we’re still supposed to morally support him.
  3. And normally I’d snark on whether a person can swing with the “spped” of a thought… striking or otherwise. But this is Greg we’re talking about. His thoughts tool along at two miles an hour, overheat and are left by the side of the road.

 
One of the nobles sagged lifeless to the ground, skull split to the teeth.

“Fortunately being an Evil Noble means I have great medical and dental insurance!”

 
Grignr gasped as he observed the bisected face set in its leering death agonies.

“Dad?”

Seriously, if your head has been cut in half, your face can’t be set in ANY expression, let alone a leering “death agony.” Without working facial muscles, you have no expressions!

 
It was Agafnd!

…. what the HELL? That guy was killed in Chapter Two! He was impaled on a frigging sword, and now he’s up and sauntering around the place so he can get killed a second time?!

And we’re never told why! Obviously Theis REMEMBERED that he killed that character off, because Greg is apparently shocked to see him there… but he never even ADDRESSES the question of WHY HE’S ALIVE AGAIN. It isn’t even thought of! Nobody mentions it! It just comes up at random and is forgotten just as quickly, even as it opens up dozens of new plot holes. This goes beyond stupid writing! This is stupid writing that is TRYING to be stupid!

The dead mans comrade having recovered from his shock drew a jewel encrusted dagger from beneath the folds of his robe and lunged toward the barbarians back.

Can someone explain why in bad fantasy rich people always cover their weapons with gems? Why not just get a high-quality weapon which would probably cost a lot itself, but with no bits to break off?

 
Grignr spun at the sound from behind

Uh, he lunged at you with a dagger. Unless he started screaming while he did it, that wouldn’t make much noise.

 
and smashed down his crimsoned axe once more.

Oh, so you’re done inspecting the bisected face of the dead man who was already dead? Okay.

 
His antagonist lunged howling to a stream of stagnent green water, grasping a spouting stump that had once been a wrist.

“Mrifkstamniktirm! My brain is so tiny! Despite having a giant axe, all I managed to do was lop off a hand! Why didn’t I just chop HIM through the head too?”

 
Grignr raised his axe over his head and prepaired to finish the incomplete job,

He always feels a sense of emptiness if he doesn’t finish horribly slaughtering people.

 
but was detered half way through his lunge by a frenzied screech from behind.

“Mrifktinmknstn! Someone has told the Twilight fangirls that I called Edward a pussy!”

Carthena leapt to the head of the writhing figure, plunging a smoldering torch into the agonized face.

… which somehow doesn’t strike me as a very efficient way of killing someone, especially since the torch is SMOLDERING (meaning it’s going out). It would be painful as hell, but not fatal.

 
The howls increased in their horrid intensity, stifled by the sizzling of roasting flesh,

I’m pretty sure that sizzling isn’t going to drown out “horridly intense howls,” unless those howls are being uttered by white mice.

 
then died down until the man was reduced to a blubbering mass of squirming, insensate flesh.

Is he supposed to be dead? The stuff they say afterwards implies that he is, but Theis says that he’s blubbering and squirming.

 
Grignr advance to Carthena’s side wincing slightly from the putrid aroma of charred flesh that rose in a puff of thick white smog throughout the chamber.

  1. See Greg advance. Advance, Greg, advance.
  2. So seeing someone getting badly burned is that big a deal for Greg? I thought he was supposed to be the Ultimate Kickass Barbarian? But seeing a guy burned in the face is enough to make him “wince” after he CHOPPED A GUY’S FACE IN HALF.
  3. Smog? This guy was so gross that he technically counts as air pollution.

 
Carthena reeled slightly, staring dasedly downward at her gruesome handywork.

“Wow, I actually did something! That’s never happened before!”

 
“I had to do it … it was Agaphim … I had to, ” she exclaimed!

“I had to attack him with no weapon except a dying torch, instead of letting YOU do it! He killed a guy who I had a crush on! He had to die!”

 
“Sargon should be more carful of his right hand men.” Added Grignr, a smug grin upon his lips.

I don’t think this guy was a god’s right-hand man. That implies some kind of actual communication between them.

 
“But to hell with Sargon for now,”

OH NO YOU DI’N’T!

“the stench is becoming bothersome to me.”

That’s what I said when I started snarking this book.

 
With that Grignr grasped Carthena around the waist leading her around the bend in the cave and into the open.

… so he grasped her around the waist, around the bend, in the cave into the open.. remember commas? I miss commas.

 
A ball of feral red was rising through the mists of the eastern horizon, disipating the slinking shadows of the night.

Holy crap! Run for your life! A feral red ball is coming after us! It’s going to eat our brains!

 
A coral stood before the pair, enclosing two grazing mares.

… and suddenly we’re underwater, since coral reefs don’t tend to grow OUT of water. Don’t ask me how the horses haven’t died yet.

And how very convenient that there are ONLY two horses just waiting there, with no guards or anything.

 
Grignr reached into a weighted down leather pouch dangling at his side and drew forth the scintillant red emerald he had obtained from the bloated idol.

… and noticed the horrifying words carved into its facets, eliciting a bone-chilling howl from his clamped lungs: Made in China!

 
Raising it toward the sun he said, “We shall do well with bauble, eh!”

“I has bauble. We has bauble. We shall sell bauble. We shall not use word ‘the.”‘

Carthena gaped at the gem gasping in a terrified manner “The eye of Argon, Oh! Kalla!”

Hee hee, try saying that sentence out loud, with all the punctuation just as Theis wrote it. It sounds like William Shatner burped it up, doesn’t it? “The Eye of Argon, oh!” and then “Kalla!”

Also, how can you gape and gasp at the same time?

 
At this the gem gave off a blinding glow, then dribbled through Grignr’s fingers in a slimy red ooze.

“See? See what happens when you say the title of this shitfest? You liquefy gems!”

 
Grignr stepped back, pushing Carthena behind him.

“Stand back! That oozing emerald may be dangerous!”
“Save me, big brave man!”

 
The droplets of slime slowly converged into a pulsating jelly-like mass. A single opening transfixed the blob, forminf into a leechlike maw.

Okay, a formerly ordinary jewel just randomly turned into a gross blob monster. For no reason. Out of the blue. At the very ending of the story. Despite the fact that a bunch of people stuck it in a statue’s socket with no problem, and hung around under it for ages.

…. fine, I’m going with that. I’ve become numb to the stupidity of this book. It’s a solar-powered jewel monster. So what?

 
Then the hideous transgressor of nature flowed towards Grignr, a trail of greenish slime lingering behind it.

… I thought it was RED. As in, a red emerald (which isn’t really an emerald at all, but I digress). Also, it’s a… trespasser of nature? The hell?

 
The single gap puckered repeatedly emitting a ghastly sucking sound.

If Jim Theis is starting to write a sex scene, I swear I will go off and kill Bambi’s mother!

 
Grignr spread his legs

I KNEW IT! I KNEW IT! IT’S A BAD SEX SCENE!

into a battle stance, steeling his quivering thews for a battle royal with a thing he knew not how to fight.

… here’s a brilliant thought: RUN AWAY. Why are you fighting this freaky thing? You don’t know what it is, what it can do, and killing it really won’t get you anything. Get on your drowning mares and RUN AWAY. Really, there’s only one reason to actually fight this thing: to look cool because you’re a barbarian and therefore have to fight your way out of everything, including kindergartens, nightclubs, bar tabs and chess tournaments.

 
Carthena wound her arms about her protectors neck, mumbling, “Kill it! Kill!” While her entire body trembled.

Oh shut up, bitch. You’re not helping at all. Also, she apparently wasn’t disturbed by wholesale slaughter and almost being sacrificed, including the part when an guy who had almost been CHOPPED IN HALF fell on top of her. But as soon as a blob monster shows up, she’s all trembly and whiny.

 
The thing was almost upon Grignr when he buried his axe into the gristly maw.

Run… the hell… away. Do not just stand there and wait for Blob Of Jewelled Death to come to YOU.

Also, this thing is made of jewel jello! It doesn’t have gristle! Which is cooked cartilage!

 
It passed through the blob and clanged upon the ground.

Yeah, I figured that would happen. If it goes through your fingers, what’s the point of swinging a cutting weapon at it? RUN, YOU IDIOT.

 
Grignr drew his axe back with a film of yellow-green slime clinging to the blade.

“Mriknsmsirikfmak you! Now I shall have to clean the slime from my axe! DIE, YOU BLOB!”

 
The thing was seemingly unaffected.

But inside, it was deeply saddened and disappointed in Greg.

Then it started to slooze up his leg.

According to urbandictionary, “slooze” means a combination of “slut” and “booze.” So, perfect for this book – they keep using the word “slut,” and I need booze.

 
The hairs upon his nape stoode on end from the slimey feel of the things buly, bulk.

…. buly, bulk? What the hell does that mean? I can’t even guess what “buly” means!

 
The Nautous sucking sound became louder,

Natous? What does that mean? Was it making a sucking sound? I mean there’s no mention of a sucking sound before this! And why do I have the feeling that this is taking a distinctly hentai-ish turn… crawling up his leg, sucking…

and Grignr felt the blood being drawn from his body.

  1. Ahhhh, it’s a VAMPIRE blob. I should have figured it out before, really. It sparkles, after all!
  2. You can’t really feel blood being drawn out of your body, dude. You can feel the effect, but not the actual drainage.
  3. And how the hell is it sucking out his blood? It doesn’t seem to have any suckers or teeth, and apparently it’s not solid enough to even touch.

 
With each hiss of hideous pucker the thing increased in size.

“Wow, it’s too bad that I didn’t bother to run away instead of letting this thing suck my blood. Mrikfunksritik my tiny brain!”

 
Grignr shook his foot about madly in an attempt to dislodge the blob,

I thought it was on his leg, not his foot.

 
but it clung like a leech, still feeding upon his rapidly draining life fluid.

If it were draining that rapidly, wouldn’t Greg have passed out by now?

 
He grasped with his hands trying to rip it off, but only found his hands entangled in a sickly glue- like substance.

“Yes, it is certainly unfortunate that I didn’t run away, because if I had, I wouldn’t be getting sucked dry like a slushie right now. And not in a fun way!”

 
The slimey thing continued its puckering ; now having grown the size of Grignr’s leg from its vampiric feast.

“Puckering” and “sucking” are not the same thing! You can pucker without sucking anything, and vice versa!

 
Grignr began to reel and stagger under the blob, his chalk white face and faltering muscles attesting to the gigantic loss of blood.

If it’s grown from “jewel-sized” to the size of his leg, shouldn’t he already be dead? I mean, how much life fluid does this asshole have?

Carthena slipped from Grignr in a death-like faint,

Always nice to see a strong female character. Who faints. Yeah. Thanks for dispelling the myth that all “barbarian” fiction is sexist, Theis. Also, wasn’t she behind him to begin with?

 
a morrow chilling scream upon her red rubish lips.

  1. If she’s in a deathlike faint, how can she scream?
  2. And she’s got a… following-day chilling scream?
  3. What does “rubish” even mean – Rube Goldbergesque?

In final desperation Grignr grasped the smoldering torch upon the ground

Waaaaaiiiiittt a frigging minute, where did that torch come from? When we last saw it, it was stuck in the prince’s face, which was INSIDE THE TUNNEL. Then they left the tunnel, and suddenly the STILL-SMOLDERING torch is on the ground next to them!

 
and plunged it into the reeking maw of the travestry.

I thought its reeking maw was busy sucking blood from his leg.

 
A shudder passed through the thing.

“Yuck! This isn’t crimson life fluid!”

 
Grignr felt the blackness closing upon his eyes, but held on with the last ebb of his rapidly waning vitality.

“Too bad I am not a hopeless pathetic wuss who might have survived by running away. Instead, I am a star in my own personal fringe-fetish hentai!”

He could feel its grip lessoning as a hideous gurgling sound erupted from the writhing maw.

But if it’s still gripping him, how is its writhing maw able to have anything erupt from it?!

 
The jelly like mass began to bubble like a vat of boiling tar as quavers passed up and down its entire form.

Because when I think “jelly-like mass,” I think about boiling tar.

And with that… the book ends. I’m serious. THAT IS THE FUCKING END! We don’t find out what happens to Greg or Orchid-Haired Whore, and we never find out if the random jewel-jello monster dies. It ends there! It’s like if Tolkien had decided to end Lord of the Rings with Frodo standing inside Mount Doom contemplating the lava… except of course, the book STILL wouldn’t have sucked because Tolkien was a good writer!

Now, I know that there have been a couple “lost endings” that have been floating around the web for a few years now, which are allegedly a few paragraphs that hastily wrap up the story with Greg killing the jello monster and heading off into the sunset with Flexible-Nosed Whore. But since their authenticity has been questioned, I am going to just assume that Theis forgot to write the actual ending for the time being! Which means I am done, done done.

And for anyone who has slogged through this giant pile of putrid crap with me, I offer a small relief for your screaming melting brains: an owl in a little knit hat…

… a rat contemplating yummy veggies…

and a Scottish fold playing a video game.

There, don’t you feel better? Now purge your brain of this crap and go read something GOOD.

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