The Yaethyr Cycle The Achaeid Book 1 The Enriyes


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The Yaethyr Cycle:

The Achaeid
Book 1: The Enriyes

Ramsay Duff

INTRODUCTION
You are Achaeon, prince of the Kingdom of Yaethyr in Greece. You are returning home after many voyages abroad, however a warm welcome does not await you at home. Soon you will enter a deadly maze of treachery, danger, terror and honour in order to reclaim your homeâ?¦


rules


YOUR ABILITIES

Roll 1 die. If you roll a 1 or 2 your skill is 9, if you roll a 3 or 4 it’s 10, and if you roll 5 or 6 it’s 11.

Roll 1 die and add the result to 14, this is your stamina.

Roll 1 die,. Add this to 6, and this is your luck.

You also have an honour score, which begins at 0.

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YOUR SHIP

Roll 1 die and add 6, this is your ‘Crew strike’.

Roll 2 dice and add 6, this is your crew strength.

Sea battles are, quite simply, normal battles with ‘Strike’ as skill and ‘Strength’ as stamina.

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You may pick two skills

Archery-You may fire arrows with amazing accuracy. You are a proficient hunter and stealth man with this ability, and may fire at enemies whose skill is below yours before combat by testing your skill. If successful you may deduct 2 points of stamina from them.

Javelin Throwing-You are trained with this method of striking down your foes. Before combat, you may test your skill. If successful, you have speared your foe and may subtract 3 from their stamina.

Endurance-Your muscles and heart are extremely powerful. Most tiresome exercises, be they running long distances or carrying heavy items are easier to you.

Etiquette-You are well trained in the rules of Xenia. You know exactly how to behave to impress others, and how to gain favour.

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EQUIPMENT

You have a sword, armour and a crewed ship. If you have the archery skill, you have a bow and arrows. If you have javelin skill you own a javelin. You also own a shield.

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CULTURE

This adventure is set in the ‘Heroic Age’, a time in greek mythology during which acts of heroism and bravery were common. In a more real-world way of looking at it, it is set near the beginning of the Mycenaean Age, a period around 1,500 BC. There are several important cultural laws, most of all, Xenia. This is the etiquette of treating guests and hosts well. Traditionally, you should allow a guest to stay at your home if asked, should allow them to eat drink and bathe if they wish before making any requests of them, and when they leave they should be given a gift. The guest, meanwhile, must respect the host and their family, treating them well. These laws are seen as extremely important, so be aware of them when making choices.

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background


BACKGROUND:

I tell a tale of Yaethyr, of its noble prince, proud Achaeon, who voyaged far to reclaim his home. He was enemy of Minos, of the Enriyes, of the monstrous Cyclopes, and also to his own pride. May the Muses guide his tale as it is told.

You gaze across the azure sea as the coast rises before you like a god from the waves. All around you, your crew cheer at the sight. You smile. It has been two years since you were last here. At the time, your father, King Vaeon of Yaethyr had gifted you with a ship with which to explore the world. You have had great adventures, yet now home is in sight for you, Prince Achaeon. As you near the port, you turn to your second in command, Choron. He is leaping in the air, cheering to the gods with thanks for the joyful times, both past and future. Then he quietens, pointing at the port city of Yaethyr...

...Smoke is rising from it.

Your heart seems to freeze. Turning to your men, you see similar looks of shock and fear on their faces. As you get closer, you unsheathe your sword, readying for battle...

Your ship comes to rest at the quayside. Leaping off, you race into the deserted docks, panic filling you. Silence reigns. Here and there, bodies are scattered across the ground. You turn towards the palace, racing along deserted streets. Behind you run your warriors, all equally shocked. As you near, figures appear, at least a hundred beings heading towards you. One, a horseman, reaches you first. He is pale, dark haired and thin, wearing ornamental armour, “Greetings, strangers.” He calls out “Who are you?”

“Who are we?” you yell, “Who are you? I am Prince Achaeon of Yaethyr, why is the city deserted?” the rider stares at you, evidently surprised,

“Welcome, Achaeon, welcome back to your home. However I must sorrowfully tell you that here you are a prince no longer. King Vaeon has been defeated by the new king, Samaion the son of the god Hermes. He conquered the city, defeating our grand army with a far smaller one. Now he rules instead, and we follow him.” You stare

“Where...are the people?”

“Many have died in battle, the rest live further inland. Now follow me and I shall lead you to the new king.

The horseman and a group of warriors lead you uphill. As they do, you question the rider. “How long ago did this Samaion invade?”

“Perhaps three quarters of a year ago. He gathered an army and attacked. The city soon succumbed.”

You consider all you hear, thoughts of revenge filling your mind. “Did...my father survive?”

“Yes, he is still lives at the palace, just no longer king, as you shall soon see.” The palace is now in view, its perfect white walls gleaming in the sunlight.

You follow him through the entrance room and into the forecourt. Memories flood back of your times here, yet now it seems entirely different. Countless soldiers fill the rooms, watching you pass in sinister fashion. Few others remain, but for a few nervous looking folk. You stare around, saddened by all this, when a spear jabs your back, “Hey!” one of the soldiers snarls, “Hurry up.”

You head on, through the ante-chambers and into the central chamber, the Megaron.

A fire burns wearily at the centre of the room, the walls adorned with beautiful painting lit by it. Several people squat, chained, nearby, while a band of warriors and Cyclopes sit around, jeering at them. At the centre of the group, atop a throne behind the fire, sits Samaion.
Walking around the fire, you begin to see him. He is massive both in height and shoulder width. A breastplate of beautifully adorned metal covers his torso, and a huge sword hangs at his belt. His head is bald, but for his eyebrows and a dark black goatee. His eyes, staring at you, radiate power. A piercing blue, they seem to hold control over all things. You feel an urge to bow to him as if he were a god. He opens his mouth, “Greetings, stranger.” His voice booms across the room, “I am King Samaion of Yaethyr. Who are you all?” You leap forward,

“I am Achaeon, rightful heir of Yaethyr, where is my father?” he chuckles, his voice radiating malice, “So, you have at last returned to your home, though I fear too late. Now I rule. Now the people obey me, fulfil my mission.”

“Your mission?”

“Come, now, I am the Champion of Fate, do you really believe one city alone is enough? Those who can fight will fight for me. Those who cannot will make weapons for my army. Those who can do neither die. I will continue my army’s campaign against the other nearby cities, making them bow to me.” He rises from his throne, “This is no longer your land, but I will show you your father all the same.”

A clanking noise sounds behind you, along with weeping. Turning, you come face to face with your father.

His eyes are missing, and his beard is a tangled forest, and his clothes ragged. His hands fumble ahead, seeking clues of his surroundings, “H...hello? Who’s there?” he moans, horrified, you grab his hand, “Father, it’s me, Achaeon.” You say, the words rushing from your mouth. Tears build in your eyes, “Don’t worry, father, I’ll...”

“And now.” Booms Samaion, “I can do what I have been waiting to. I wished to give you a message, to tell you that I now rule...” he strides forward, unsheathing his blade. Time slows to a crawl. The blade swings out as Samaion steps behind your father. It looms, inching downwards. You grab your sword, trying to wrench it up in time, but he is already too near. As rays of light are shattered and repelled by the reflective surface of his blade. The blade sinks into your father’s back.

You scream, lashing out at Samaion. In an instant, he pulls his weapon from your father’s back, knocking your’s aside. Vaeon, once king of Yaethyr, falls into your arms, blood splashing from his mouth. “My son...” he wheezes, “Do not fight Samaion...” you cannot obey, with a howl of rage, you lunge at Samaion, your father held up with one hand. Swinging your sword down in one massive blow, you watch him, too slow to react, he stands as the blade descends...

He sweeps aside with speed like that of the horses of the chariot of Helios.

You do a double take. Where is he now?

“I’m giving you a chance, Achaeon. So please desist from mindless violence.” Declares Samaion’s deep voice from behind you. You turn to face him, only a moment later, he seems to rocket away, behind you again. You cannot seem to follow his movements. “A...chaeon...” gasps your father feebly, “Samaion is more than just a demigod, he is the Champion of Fate...He is protected by destiny itself. You must not try his patience...”

“His patience? He’s blinded you, destroyed your kingdom, you’re bleeding to death because of him!”
“Yes...but that is no reason for you to die...” he coughs, dribbling blood onto the marble floor, “Samaion, please, allow my son to take me outside and bid me farewell alone.” He stammers. Samaion grins murderously, but then glances around at his warriors. Several already look shocked, this is far from Xenia already. He sighs with frustration, “As you wish.”

Outside, you lie your father down in a verdant garden, here he begins speaking. “Achaeon, we have little time. Samaion has traded with the Fates, controllers of destiny. He has been given unimaginable power in return for building them a true empire. If he wins, the world will succumb to the Fates’ utter and unceasing control, while he would be like a god. He is near immortal...but not truly. One weapon can battle the power of the Fates. Most weapons of gods or men can do naught, but for one, the Sickle of Kronos, father of the gods, lord of time. Time and the Fates are rival forces, Fate being control, and Time uncontrollable. You must retrieve this from Kronos in his prison...” he coughs again, his life growing short, “...The Fates are...weakening me...I...must...resist...Kronos’ prison, where the gods put him is in the depths of...the...Underworld...” your skin grows cold,

“But...how can I reach it, let alone survive it?”

“There is a spell...an old spell...I know little of it...I know not the words, but I know you need to sacrifice a ram with a dagger forged by Hephaestus. The dagger can be found in one place I know of, the palace of King Minos, where there is such a blade. Where the spell is cast, and the words to invoke I know not. You must seek these yourself. With these you must reach the Underworld and...” he wheezes, eyes wide, “There...you must...remember to...to...” he splutters again, “I...wish you luck son...for you will need it...” he coughs, and then his eyes roll up into his head. His breathing stops and his soul descends to Hades. You shut his eyes and rise. Samaion is striding from his palace, towards you, “Ah,” he chuckles, “It seems your father has tragically died.” He turns to check no one is watching, “I promise you he will have no funeral, he will be trapped at the edge of the River Styx for eternity. Let that teach you. Flee, never come here again, or you shall share his fate.” Your crew emerge from the palace, surrounded by enemies. They catch up with you, you stare hatefully at your father’s killer, “Samaion.” You declare, “I promise that if I ever return here, you will suffer, or I shall die trying to have revenge.” Your enemy howls with laughter, “I fear you will have the latter, Achaeon, now begone, my mercy grows thin.”
You return to your ship. Together, your crew set sail sorrowfully. As the coast recedes, you tell them of your father’s last words and turn to begin your quest.

NOW TURN OVER


1


Your vessel sails forth. Your comrade Choron turns to you, “So, sir, shall we head for Crete?” you nod, and the ship sets off.

Turn to 20.


2


“While it would be a lie to say that I have not been impressed by the exploits of Achaeon, it would also be a lie to say that all of the gods felt so. Many supported Minos, and so I am afraid that more wish for the prince to be punished than those that do not.” He sighs, “Such a shame, though I promise you, Achaeon, that I will ask one of the muses to make a poem about your life.” He finishes his wine, “I’m sorry about this, my friend, this is rather like it was with Laius...or was it Orestes?” he considers, “Regardless, I bid you all farewell.”

“Wait!” you yell, Dionysus, takes Ariadne’s hand, “I’m afraid I cannot, there is a man in Phaeacia who has just brewed the most lovely new type of wine, and I simply must visit him.” He waves to you, ignoring your frustrated shouting as he explodes into a shower of sparks, along with Ariadne. You groan, turning to Choron. He looks at you sadly, “I’m sorry for this.” He says sadly, “We will try to rescue Yaethyr awithout you.” There is a shooting pain in your back as the claws of the Fuiries sink into your flesh. You sob as you are hoisted away. Your suffering will be long and unpleasant, however you will not be killed. Eventually, driven mad by the Furies, you will be cast onto an island far in the west, where you will live alone and insane until you take your own life in despair. Thankfully, however the poem which Dionysus promised will be very impressive indeed.


3


“As one favoured by Ares, you may be trained in combat.” He tells you “Now allow me to train you...”
For an hour or so, you receive exhausting training in combat. From now on, if you ever face an enemy with ‘warrior’ in their name, you may add 1 to your attack strength, since you can predict their attacks. Also add ‘Ares’ to your god box’.

“Now blessed of Ares.” The priest says, grinning his grey, cracked teeth, “I am finished, farewell.” Gain 1 point of honour and turn to 5.


4


You leap aside as the cutlass whistles past you, crashing into the ground, where it buries itself. The priest strains to pull it free, beads of sweat building on his brow. Is he truly compromised, or just pretending to be weak? To press home your advantage turn to 54. To ready for another attack turn to 14.


5


You continue exploring the palace. You may not return anywhere you’ve already been.

To remain in your room until tomorrow morning turn to 53.
To visit the forecourt turn to 27.
To request a bath turn to 24.
To visit Ariadne turn to 33.
To visit Daedalus, whoever he is, turn to 49.
To visit the temple of Ares turn to 26.


6


The tunnel continues for several dozen metres before ending again, this time in another slab, this one bronze. A disc containing a circular depression sits at the centre. Lifting up the disc you stole, you see it fits perfectly.. Twisting it into the hole, it clunks, and the slab rises, revealing another one. On this are two switches, one labelled ‘40’ and the other ‘’50’. To press ‘40’ turn to 76, to press ‘50’ turn to 63.


7


Your blade is faster, slashing his wrist and causing it to release his sabre. It sails sideways, surrounded by tiny balls of blood. The priest’s tattooed face registers surprise, but by now you have slammed into him. The two of you crash to the ground and you raise your sword, planting the tip at his throat. “Is this your test?” you growl. The priest looks worried, then begins cackling, “Aye.” He says, “You have passed.” Turn to 3.


8


The passage sinks further, and s it does you hear a crashing noise from above. Soon you find the passage rising again, and watch, horrified, as a massive boulder comes rocketing down towards you, turning you race away. Test your skill. If successful, you get showered with rubble (Lose 4 stamina points) But escape otherwise you are crushed into the ground like a coulis, and your adventure ends here, in this dank, wretched crater. If you survive, you return to the junction, turn to 6.


9


You head for Antiparos, the Furies howling from above. It is far away, and while you sail, the Furies continue plucking up your men, and the waves continue hammering your ship. Finally, you land on the island, rushing onto the beach and yelling challenges to your two pursuers. You pray that Dionysus aid you. A figure emerges from the darkness further along the beach.

“I am sorry.” He says, sadly, “But I cannot aid you here.” Then he is gone.

You howl in rage, waving your blade at the night sky. Before your eyes, a bolt of lightning tears down, destroying your ship. The Furies continue their attacks throughout the night. Finally, as the sun begins creeping over the horizon, you find yourself alone on the beach, all your men dead. The furies circle above, revelling in your despair. In several weeks they will end your sorrows and suffering, but until then, you will remain marooned on this isle. Then your body will lie unmourned and unburied on the shores of Antiparos for millennia to come...


10


If you helped me slay the Minotaur, I would take you with me away from here.” You tell her. She stares at you uncertainly. If your honour score is 1 or above turn to 25, otherwise turn to 28.


11


Roll three dice. If the score is above your crew strength, a boulder hits your ship a glancing blow, killing several, Roll a die and deduct the score from your crew strength.

Continuing back north, you take the laborious route around Talos’ island. The journey is long, and the crew grow hungry. You must give them one portion of food or deduct 1 point from your crew strike until they next receive a portion of food.

After a long time, you circumvent the island and approach Crete, landing on a silky white beach. Turn to 15.


12


A powerfully built man approaches you, offering to hone your sword for twenty gold discs or one portion of food. If he does, add 1 point to the damage you inflict for the next five battles you fight. Now turn to 5.


13


You lunge at the same moment as he does. You both sail towards each other, swords arching downwards like the fangs of a beast. Test your skill, if successful turn to 7, otherwise turn to 48.


14


The priest tugs the weapon up, sweeping it through the air, seemingly expecting you to be closer. Blade so far overhead, he loses balance, falling backwards and dropping his scimitar with a surprised cry. In an instant, you land on his chest, sword-tip at his throat, “Is this your test?” you snarl. He looks shocked, then fearful...then...happy? “Well done.” He cackles, “You have passed the test.” Turn to 3.


15


Wearied by the journey, your men pull the ship onto the beach and lie back on the sand, resting. You however, must head to te palace of Minos. If you have the hunting skill you may catch one portion of food for your crew first. Calling Choron and another crew member named Eochus, you head further into Crete, seeking the king. After a while, you encounter some shepherds, who direct you to the palace.

The palace of Minos is an imposing white building looming before the three of you. Surrounded mainly by wilderness, there are few outside. Walking together, you enter the entrance chamber, where a guard is dozing in the afternoon sunlight. He nods up as you approach, “I am Achaeon of Yaethyr, I’m here to meet King Minos.” He turns to the door,

“Indeed? You seek an audience?”

“Yes please.” The guard nods again, turning and beckoning you. Following him, you head through the fourecourt, refusing his offers of food and drink, heading for the ante-chamber, passing two tall, thin, pale men in red cloaks. Entering Minos’ throne room. Here, a large number of people are talking around the throne who grin unnervingly at you. At the center, flanked by frescoes of two griffins, an old man sits, frail and small, yet his eyes glimmer with malevolent intelligence. “Many wish to speak with him.” The guard tells you, “Wait your turn.”

You watch as a sudden change occurs. A man has been standing before Minos on a bronze patch of floor. He has been saying something about his village being terrorised by a sea monster, when suddenly, Minos straightens up,

“This?” he snarls, “You disturb my court with this?We have greater worries than a single village. The fool Samaion is gathering his armies in the north, while fiends far greater than this petty serpent are prowling along the Greek coast further and further south, and you trouble me with these petty troubles? Sometimes one must die for the sake of many. Sometimes the ill part of the body is cut off to prevent it infecting the rest. I am saddened to hear of your troubles, but more saddened that you disturb me for them. Begone!” the man is weeping now,

“Sir I only ask...”

“Begone!” Minos pulls a bronze lever beside his throne and the patch of floor the man is standing on falls away. Screaming, the man falls, landing far below in the darkness. “My lord, I beg you...” pleads the man’s voice,

“Your begging kind dilutes the perfection of Cretan society. You must now face a creature far worse than this pitiful serpent. If you find the exit, however, you will be free to go.” The whimpering below quietens, then, “Yes my lord, I will find the exit.” Minos pulls the lever and the trapdoor closes again. Silence for several minutes. Minos begins to speak again when suddenly, a scream sounds below, followed by a bestial roar. “Please my lord, free me, please!” begs the voice below, Minos looks down,

“If you truly wish to regain your lost dignity then do not flee, but fight!” he bellows. Whimpering continues, followed by a ripping noise and screams, then another roar, then silence.

King Minos shifts to a more comfortable position in his throne, “Does anyone else wish to trouble me with such trivialities?” he says quietly. The silent crowd moves back as one, “I hope you all now see that such weakness is not befitting of a Cretan. Only the best are worthy of our society. Remember that. Who else wishes to trouble me?” the crowd is all moving away, and you are tempted to join, when the guard who escorted you in here calls out to him. Groaning inwardly, you step forward, avoiding the trapdoor carefully. “Greetings my lord, I am Achaeon of Yaethyr...”

“Yaethyr?” snaps Minos, glaring at you and hand moving towards the lever,

“I assure you I am no ally of Samaion. I seek to kill him.” You declare, he lowers his hand,

“Indeed? Then why do you not?”

“I have only a few men, while his force numbers hundreds, perhaps thousands. I do not believe we could ever win through simple battle.”

“Then what do you think would aid you? You do not expect me to give you an army do you?” he says, menace filling his voice,

“No, but I believe there is a spell I can use...but it requires a dagger forged by Hephaestus...” Minos howls with laughter as you speak, “Hephaestus’ blade? You expect that?” he screams, rage growing evident, “That was an heirloom I inherited from my father! You expect me to simply comply to your wishes?”

“Surely there is some service I can do you in return?” Minos quietens with thought,

“Well... I suppose...Samaion is a thorn in my flesh...were you to kill him, you would do me great service. But to be my agent, I must first be certain you are able to kill him...” he frowns. If you have the etiquette skill turn to 44. If you do not then test your luck. If you are lucky, turn to 44, otherwise turn to 52.


16


You head for Paros, the Furies howling from above. It is far away, and while you sail, the Furies continue plucking up your men, and the waves continue hammering your ship. Finally, you land on the island, rushing onto the beach and yelling challenges to your two pursuers. You pray that Dionysus aid you. A figure emerges from the darkness further along the beach.

“I am sorry.” He says, sadly, “But I cannot aid you here.” Then he is gone.

You howl in rage, waving your blade at the night sky. Before your eyes, a bolt of lightning tears down, destroying your ship. The Furies continue their attacks throughout the night. Finally, as the sun begins creeping over the horizon, you find yourself alone on the beach, all your men dead. The Furies circle above, revelling in your despair. In several weeks they will end your sorrows and suffering, but until then, you will remain marooned on this isle. Then your body will lie unmourned and unburied on the shores of Paros for millennia to come...


17


The scimitar crashes into your sword pushing you downwards, he presses it down, striving to push your blade aside. If you have the endurance skill turn to 23, otherwise, roll 1 die./ On a 1 or 2 turn to 31, on a 3 or 4 turn to 43, on a 5 or 6 turn to 23.


18


The city of Diosens lies baking beneath the sun. Reaching port, you leave most of your crew aboard, bringing six companions including Choron with you, you gaze around the bustling city. Life and colour is everywhere, yet you cannot help but notice many ruined buildings, generally burnt beyond recognition. What will you do now:

Go, relax and regain stamina? Turn to 29.
If your ‘Strike’ is low, you can hire more crew by turning to 4. Editor Note this turn to is a miss-link in source document, do not select until I fix.
If you wish to buy or sell at the market, turn to 42.
If you wish to see the ruler of Diosens to ask about the spell, turn to 35.
Finally, to leave turn to 25.


19


You pay the priest. He puts your offering on the altar, before lifting a large blade from it. He turns. “Draw your sword,” he wheezes. Uncertain, you consider obeying...then...

He rockets forward, blade lashing out. Landing before you, he sweeps out, and you duck, only just evading death, although the blade draws a small cut...lose 2 stamina points. The priest steps back, weapon ready. “Fight me.” He snarls, cutting a figure of eight in the air. Do you wish to attack (Turn to 13) or will you defend yourself?”Turn to 21.


20


You set sail for Crete, heading south. The journey takes you along the coast, and through several beautiful archipelagos. You know little of Crete. Apparentlently, according to one of your crew, King Minos is a great king, but also a tyrannical one. He is said to have kept a bull-fiend beneath his palace, feeding guests to it, until it was slain by some hero, who subsequently died. The king is also meant to hold a great inventor, who has crafted a great many items of power for him.
Several days of sailing brings you near the isle of Crete, however, near the end of your journey, as it falls into view, things take a turn for the worse.

As the isle emerges from the horizon, you marvel at the shining cliffs, and the distant visible city. Closer to you, however, is a darker coloured, rockier island. As you approach it, movement appears atop it, and a projectile rockets into the sky. You peer into the spot of shadow above you as it grows. It appears to be an impossibly large boulder, descending fast towards you. Realisation sinking in, you scream orders, sending your vessel to the right so that the rock slams into the water behind you, spraying your entire crew. You frown at the island as a figure appears atop it. Dark-coloured, some shade of grey, and far larger than any man you have ever seen, it is already hefting another rock in its arms.

“Talos...” breathes Choron,

“What?”

“Talos...I thought it a mere myth...that thing is an indestructible machine. We must evade it.” You frown as another rock flies skyward. You consider your options, heading straight south would get you past Talos fastest, but would take you dangerously close to him, to do this turn to 34. Heading west, then south would be slower, but would be further away, to do this turn to 56. Finally, heading back north, out of range, then giving the island a wide berth would be slowest, but probably safest. To do this turn to 11.


21


Suddenly the priests rockets forward, flying through the air at you, landing to bring his blade lashing down. If you wish to dodge it turn to 4. If you wish to parry it, turn to 17.


22


You find yourself facing a cowled stranger, who beckons you. Before you can move, it races forward, knife in hand. “In the name of Samaion I will slay you!” he snarls. This assassin is clearly in league with Samaion, fight him.

ASSASSIN: Skill: 7 Stamina:11

If you kill him, the others saw him attack you, so admit that it was in self defence, so do not press you, however, you feel that Minos will not be pleased...record the word ‘Asp’ on your adventure sheet. Searching the man you find nothing. Turn to 5.


23


Groaning with effort, you force his blade aside, sitting up with amazing speed and swinging your sword to his throat. He freezes...then cackles, “Well done, you have passed the test.” He says, rising. Turn to 3.


24


A bath is poured for you. Regain 8 stamina points for the rest and turn to 5.


25


“I...I suppose...” Ariadne stammers sadly, she glances at the poet, then leans forward, a fire rekindled in her eyes. “I cannot help you much, but I know who can. Daedalus was the one who gave me the items Theseus used in the Labyrinth. His workshop is forbidden, and is in fact the exit to the labyrinth. If you pass the guards, always turn right in the following passages, and if you must choose a numbered artefact, choose one with a ‘4’ in it. More than that I do not know. Now remember your promise when you escape the labyrinth...I was given a promise when Theseus abandoned me on Naxos...As I woke in the morning to see his ship disappearing into the horizon, screaming curses at him, I met another on the island...the god Dionysus. We fell in love there, but the next day, my father arrived. Lord Bacchus told me that his father had made him give me back to my own father, yet promised that were I ever to return to Naxos I could live with him on Olympus. Perhaps if I escaped I could again meet my lover.” She hands you an emerald and rises, walking away. You consider in wonder, perhaps you have hope after all! Gain 1 luck point and turn to 5.


26


The Temple of Ares is a large hall of pillars, ending in a sacrificial altar. Here, beside the bloodstained stone, stands a red robed priest, staring up at large statue of the god of war. As you enter, he turns, “Greetings.” He croaks, “Do you seek to follow the path of Ares?” he holds out a hand, “ To do so you must pass the test.”

“What test?” you ask, but he simply chuckles. If you wish to take the test, turn to 19, otherwise, there is naught here for you, turn to 5.


27


The forecourt is full of life today. Roll 1 die to see who you meet.

On a 1 turn to 22.
On a 2 or 3 turn to 32.
On a 4 or 5 turn to 12.
On a 6 turn to 38.


28


“I...I am sorry Achaeon, I do not believe you...” she says sorrowfully, “Heroes...you are just like Theseus, wise...yet selfish, bending the lowly to your will before discarding them like filth...” she rises, tears gushing down her cheeks, and rushes away.The poet stares at you curiously. Lose 1 honour point. Feeling there is nothing left you can do to impress Ariadne, you head off. Turn to 5.


29


You head for Naxos, the Eumenides circling above. Thunder crashes and the waves rage around you, as you all strive with the oars and sails. Finally, the rocky shoreline of Naxos comes into view. You recall Ariadne telling you that Naxos was where she first met Dionysus, and where he promised he could rescue her and bring her to Mount Olympus. Megaera sweeps low, her talons raking into Choron’s left arm, leaving deep scars. Ignoring this, you all reach the island, landing on a rain-swept beach. Dragging the ship ashore, you all draw your weapons, praying for aid. Ariadne’s aura blazes brighter than ever, as the two Furies descend, laughing at the joy of death. “Lord Dionysus, protect us!” you pray loudly. Tisiphone drops towards you, yowling. Then a man emerges from behind a rock nearby. “Stop, daughters of Ouranos, this land is owned by me, and you have no power here!” he bellows. You frown, beholding a slightly rotund man, with dark curly hair, effeminate features and, surprisingly, especially for such an evidently wealthy man, without any obvious facial hair. Though not particularly tall, the man radiates charisma, as well as the smell of grapes. He looks at you and you are shocked to see a golden glow in his eyes, which slowly fades to become normal eyes. Far off in the darkness there appear to be several people following him. Men with the legs of goats, the satyrs, frolic through the trees, playing their flutes and chasing their female counterparts, the Maenads, crazed women, dancing and singing through the forest. You know the mysterious being’s name already. “Lord Dionysus.” You breathe, he smiles, “Greetings, son of Vaeon, I am impressed with your survival of the Potniae for this long, and your rescue of my love.” He strides towards Ariadne, “Your beauty is unmarred by the scar you bear.” He sighs, embracing her. “My love,” she replies, “I feared that I would never again see you.” The Furies above howl with bloodlust. “The daughter of Minos is ours, for she betrayed and tried to slay her father, would you deny the Enriyes their vengeance?” screams dread Megaera, Dionysus gazes up at her. “You will leave my love. I am not a wrathful god, but should you approach any under my protection, you will feel my anger. Even ones such as yourself must obey the immortal lords of Olympus. You have driven many to madness, and use that as a threat, but you forget that I am the lord of madness. Leave her!” the two Furies move away nervously, “White-Armed Ariadne will be unharmed then, holy Twice-Born one, however the others are ours.” Snarls Tisiphone, her serpent locks rising in anger, Dionysus sighs,

“The sailors have committed no crime. Only their captain has earned Minos’ vengeance, and they have humoured me by rescuing my love. You will leave Achaeon’s men untouched as well.” The Eumenides screech in despair, landing upon the beach and cracking their whips of flame. “Perhaps the sailors have committed no crime, but Achaeon has indeed broken the immortal laws of Xenia! He has slain the companions of his host and stolen his daughter, eben gods believe in the sacred laws of Xenia, for it was they who originally conceived them! You must give the prince to us!” all eyes turn to to Dionysus. He looks thoughtful. “Soome of the gods think greatly of Achaeon, but Minos of Crete was a great friend of the gods...” he looks deep in thought, considering. All hang on his every word. Will you be spared? If your honour score is 7 or above turn to 120, otherwise turn to 2.


30


You head for Ios, the Furies howling from above. It is far away, and while you sail, the Furies continue plucking up your men, and the waves continue hammering your ship. Finally, you land on the island, rushing onto the beach and yelling challenges to your two pursuers. You pray that Dionysus aid you. A figure emerges from the darkness further along the beach.

“I am sorry.” He says, sadly, “But I cannot aid you here.” Then he is gone.

You howl in rage, waving your blade at the night sky. Before your eyes, a bolt of lightning tears down, destroying your ship. The Furies continue their attacks throughout the night. Finally, as the sun begins creeping over the horizon, you find yourself alone on the beach, all your men dead. The furies circle above, revelling in your despair. In several weeks they will end your sorrows and suffering, but until then, you will remain marooned on this isle. Then your body will lie unmourned and unburied on the shores of Ios for millennia to come...


31


Silence reigns for a minute as you both struggle, then he suddenly swings his weapon round, attacking from a different angle, knocking yours from your grasp. It clatters away as he raises his sword high above you...and lowers it. “You have failed.” He tells you, turning and striding to the altar, where he places his blade. “You may attempt to best me again if you wish.” Lose 1 point of honour. If you wish to do this, turn to 19, otherwise turn to 5.


32


You approach an old man, who stays silent, you greet him and he shrugs. Trying to talk with, him, you get little out of him, “Daedalus...” he chuckles to himself, “You wily old...old Daedalus...wily and old...Daedalus...” this man cannot help you, so turn to 5.


33


Ariadne lives in the women’s quarters, however you encounter her just outside them in the Fourecourt. From afar she appears a beautiful woman, however you notice that she only shows the right half of her face. “Greetings princess.” You tell her, and she nods. Her hair is dark auburn, her eyes deep blue, yet as you approach she turns her head away again, hiding the left side.

“Greetings.” She replies simply, watching a poet nearby who is reciting the tale of Perseus, “I hear that you plan to battle the Minotaur.” She says quietly, face impassive,

“Yes.” You reply, “I...” she turns suddenly and you stop in your tracks, the right half of her face bears a horrific scar below the eye, raw and red. “You expect help, do you? You expect the woman who helped the last ‘hero’ here, only to be abandoned on Naxos, scarred by her own father to help you?” tears run down her cheeks and she turns back to the poet. If you wish to seek help still, you must press her. You could offer to take her with you when you leave, or you could simply leave.

To offer to take her with you turn to 10.
To leave turn to 5.


34


You approach the island, while the figure of Talos grows nearer. He...or it, is carved from some dark metal. Both eyes glow with unknown power. He raises another rock, tossing it from the cliff so that it sails towards your ship. You scream at your men to sail away, and all strain to obey. Roll 3 dice. If the score is above your crew strength, turn to 39, otherwise, turn to 37.


35





36


The axeman staggers back clutching his wounded arm. Stumbling back, he accidentally steps onto the trapdoor. Minos pulls the lever again and he sails into the shadows. Beneath, you hear sounds of combat, then a dying scream. Minos raises the trapdoor again. “Congratulations, you may be worthy.” He tells you in a relaxed manner, Beneath my palace is my treacherous wife’s son, a hybrid fiend known as the Minotaur by most of Crete. I keep it down there for execution of my enemies, however some time ago a prince named Theseus supposedly slew it. Unfortunately, this was a lie, He injured it, broke a piece of its horn off and using artefacts my treasonous daughter gave him, escaped, showing the piece of horn to claim he had succeeded. The liar escaped, though fate soon punished him. The Minotaur still prowls the tunnels below, but if you can prove yourself to me by killing the beast and escaping, I will give you the blade to slay Samaion.” He sits back, “You may enter bearing no shield, armed only with a sword.” You consider, will you attempt this? Note your reply and turn to 51.


37


The rock looms overhead, but to together, you steer the boat aside. The rock lands treacherously close in the water, sending a spray of water up. Sighing with relief, you sail on, out of range of the metal monster. Cheering, you approach Crete, landing on a silken beach. Turn to 15.


38


A priestess approaches you, eyes wide, “You must seek Daedalus.” She tells you spontaneously. “He alone can help, he alone...” she hands you ten gold discs and wanders off blearily. A little taken aback, you consider. Turn to 5.


39


A rock crashes into your ship, killing many. Roll 3 dice and deduct this from your crew strength. If any of you survive, you are now beyond Talos. Sobbing at the death of so many so early on your voyage, you reach a silky white beach on Crete. Turn to 15.


40





41


The blade catches your arm, shearing through the skin, causing you to drop your sword. You stand, his weapon pressing your chest. What fate now awaits you? He cackles with glee...and takes his weapon away, dropping it on the altar again. “Well, you are talented, but not enough, I fear. You have failed. If you wish to risk further humiliation, you can retry.” If you wish to do this then turn to 19. Otherwise, there is little left here but shame and you leave, turn to 5.


42





43


Straining, you push him away. He leaps back, weapon ready as you rise. He tenses. To attack him turn to 13, to ready for combat turn to 21.


44


“I think I have the test for you.” Minos decides. “Beneath my palace is my treacherous wife’s son, a hybrid fiend known as the Minotaur by most of Crete. I keep it down there for execution of my enemies, in return it demands little but for seven Athenian men and seven Athenian women every year. However some time ago a prince named Theseus supposedly slew it. Unfortunately, this was a lie, He injured it, broke a piece of its horn off and using artefacts my treasonous daughter gave him, escaped, showing the piece of horn to claim he had succeeded. The liar escaped, though fate soon punished him. The Minotaur still prowls the tunnels below, but if you can prove yourself to me by killing the beast and escaping, I will give you the blade to slay Samaion.” He sits back, “You may enter bearing no shield, armed only with a sword.” You think about the challenge,
What will your reply be, yes or no? Note your reply and turn to 51.


45





46


The dank passages of the labyrinth wind on unendingly. Occasionally, roars echo across the darkness, yet you find nothing. Lose 1 stamina point from tiredness from searching. After a long time, you find yourself gazing up at a roof of a large chamber. Two panels crafted from metal sit there, and you realise that they are the trapdoor from the throne room. Silence fills the cavern, punctuated by a sudden nearby roar. The Minotaur is close! Roll 2 dice, on a 10 or above turn to 55, otherwise turn to 69. If you have ‘String’ of Daedalus add 6 to your roll


47


Approaching the village, you disembark and your crew charge in, weapons ready. Striding forward, you tell the villagers that you wish for them to give you food and riches. The villagers look around at your crew. If you have the Etiquette skill then turn to 9, otherwise, roll 1 die. If the roll is above your honour, turn to 45! (Editors Note: ref 45 has not been written! Do not select), if it is equal to or below it, turn to 9.


48


The priest’s blade crashes into yours from the side, knocking it from your hand. You barely have time to see it whistle away before he collides with you. Falling to the floor, you find yourself pinned down between his knees, sword tip at your throat. Lose 1 honour point. You stare uncertainly into his dark eyes...

As he grins, “I fear you have failed the test.” He tells you, passing your sword back to you, “If you wish to risk further pain and humiliation, you may retake it.” He places his own blade back on the altar. If you wish to retake it, turn to 19. Otherwise, you leave in shame, turn to 5.


49


Daedalus’ workshop is hard to find. Finally, near the Megaron, you find an entrance, flanked by two spear wielding guards. The room they stand in is empty, however you doubt anyone can pass. You get Choron and Eochus, and peer into the room. You do not wish to cause Minos to suspect you, so must be wary. If you have the Archery skill and wish to use it here turn to 58. Otherwise, you can simply disguise yourselves and attack (Turn to 65) try to distract them (Turn to 67) Or give up and leave (Turn to 5)


50


You leap aside as the weapon swings past. The priests stands still, blade overhead, watching your eyes, reading your plans. Will you attack (Turn to 13) or ready yourself for defence (Turn to 21)?


51


If you reply no, before you get a chance, a feeling of pain fills your throat. The gods are punishing you, so lose 2 stamina points and 2 honour points. If you noted ‘yes’ gain 1 honour point.
Either way you eventually say ‘yes’.

Minos remains impassive. “I salute you, my champion. Sleep here tonight, and tomorrow you will fight...” he chuckles. Rising, he walks forward. He is not as tall a man as you supposed, yet his charisma dwarfs all others, “Now, I bid you...” he nods to a servant, “To show Prince Achaeon and his two companions their quarters. If you wish, you may attend dinner later. Until then, good day.”
A slave heads forward, “Follow me sirs.” He says, nodding towards the Forecourt. From here he leads you to several rooms containing beds. He also tells you of Knossos. “There is a temple of Ares nearby. There is also the fourecourt where you may meet others. If you wish, you may be bathed, or may visit Princess Ariadne, who may be allowed to grant you an audience.” He pauses, “Though if you are allowed...no, Daedalus would probably not be allowed to help you...” he turns as you ask him who he refers to, but he simply shakes his head, “I cannot discuss that.” He tells you, leaving.
Well, welcome to Knossos! You lie back on your bed contemplating actions.

To remain here until tomorrow morning turn to 53.
To visit the forecourt turn to 27.
To request a bath turn to 24.
To visit Ariadne turn to 33.
To visit Daedalus, whoever he is, turn to 49.
To visit the temple of Ares turn to 26.


52


He looks at the roof thoughtfully, then “Attack him, see what he’s made of.” He snaps at a nearby warrior. The warrior is huge, bald, broad shouldered and wielding a large, double headed axe. He strides forward, swinging it through the air...

CRETAN WARRIOR: Skill: 8 Stamina: 10

Each third round, he will swing at your head. When he does this, subtract 2 from his attack strength but if he wins, add 4 to the damage he inflicts.

If you reduce his stamina to 4 or less turn to 36.


53


A night of sleep allows you to recover from any wounds, regain 8 stamina points.

Awakening the next morning, you find the palace still full of life. If you have the names of any snakes on your adventure sheet, add the number of them up. If they number 0 or 1 turn to 60. If they number 2 or 3 turn to 61, if they number 4 or more turn to 66.


54


You charge in and he howls with laughter. With a sudden move he dislodges his weapon from the floor, sweeping it up towards you. Realising your mistake, you try to move aside. Test your skill. If successful, turn to 50, otherwise turn to 41.


55


Searching, you eventually begin homing in on the roars, soon you are racing along in the direction of the Minotaur’s cries. Soon they fill your ears as you near the fiend’s lair. Your nostrils are filled with the stink of fur and blood. Splashes of gore stain the walls, and soon you charge into the lair of the beast...

The chamber is devoid of life. A mound of furs lie in one corner, a bed of sorts, and a dozen or so rotting skeletons line the floor, their stench rising like flies from the remnants of the festering. You peer around, seeking the monster...

A snort makes you turn and freeze. A seven or eight foot shadow rises from a side passage, horns protruding from its brow. The Minotaur bellows, its roar tearing through the labyrinth. Lurching forward, it raises one hand, wielding a huge thighbone as a club. Snarling, it ducks its head, readying a charge...

You must think fast, will you leap aside, or wait until it is closer to leap at the last minute? To leap now turn to 75, to wait then leap turn to 71.


56


You turn west as a boulder rockets towards you, sailing around the isle, you see projectile after projectile approaching. Roll 2 dice and if this is below your crew strength, do it again. If, either time, it is above, you have been hit. Roll 2 dice and deduct the score from your crew strength. Also, for each time you are hit, test your luck. If unsuccessful, lose 1 die’s worth of stamina points.

If you survive, you finally escape the range of Talos’ rocks. Jeering at him, you and your crew reach Crete, landing on a silky white beach. Turn to 15.


57


The rock smashes into the ship, and all of your crew groan as one. Dozens are torn apart by the force. Roll two dice and deduct this number from your crew strength. Test your luck, and if you are unlucky, lose 2 dice worth of stamina. If you and your crew survive, you manage to continue along in your battered ship, as one mourning the slain. Talos hurls another rock, but by now you are two far away. Screaming abuse at the metal giant, you near Crete with a heavy heart. The island grows in size as you approach, and finally you land at a silken beach. Turn to 15.


58


Drawing your bow, you take aim and fire. One guard collapses, arrow in the chest. The other rushes forward at the unseen sniper. Test your skill, if you fail both times turn to 62, otherwise you hit him, and, both guards unconscious, may continue, turn to 64.


59


The path becomes steeper and steeper, growing damp. Your foot sinks into a hole and suddenly the ground is sloping even further. Below you, you can now see a deep pit, filled with stakes. Scrabbling the ground you strain to stay back. Test your skill. If successful, you keep your hold, otherwise, you fall, impaling yourself. Lose 6 stamina points. Either way, you find that the hall goes no further. Dragging your way back up the slope, you return to the junction, turn to 77.


60


Heading to the Megaron, you encounter Minos. “Good morning, Achaeon, how are you today.” He asks,
“Good day, sire.” You reply,

“I trust we are ready for tonight’s event?”

“I think so.”

“Good, then allow me to prepare you, you may take no javelin, bow, arrows or shield into the labyrinth with you.” Cross any of these items off your adventure sheet, “Apart from that, it matters little, I shall see you tonight in the Megaron...” Turn to 70.


61


You awaken to the sound of struggles. Looking up, you see Eochus and Choron in battle. Leaping up, you barely see a warrior lunging at you. He wears a long cloak and little armour, and wields a short sword dripping with poison. “Greetings Achaeon.” He snarls, “You have displeased my master...you shall die...”

ASSASSIN: Skill: 8 Stamina: 6

You may not use a javelin or bow here. His blade inflicts 1 extra point of damage due to the poison it is soaked in. If you slay him, you help Choron and Eochus best their foes. Turn to 60.


62


The guard lunges through the door. Desperately you try to shield your face from his view, battling:

CRETAN WARRIOR: Skill:9 Stamina: 8

If you slay him, add the word ‘Cobra’ to your adventure sheet and turn to 64.


63


The button sinks into the door. Silence fills the chamber, then a rumbling. In a split second, the roof of the entire chamber has sank at unimagineable speed, and you find yourself lying, crushed, beneath it. Minos will be most displeased. Your adventure ends here.


64


The guards dealt with, you stride towards the entrance to Daedalus’ workshop, one of the guards has a bronze disc with seventy small grooves in the sides, which you take. Eochus and Choron agree to stay and watch out for any of Minos’ followers while you enter the workshop.

Entering the corridor, you lift a burning torch from a wall bracket beside the entrance to illuminate your way. The corridor slopes downwards into shadows. Hand on hilt, you head downwards. After some way, the corridor splits. To turn right turn to 77, to turn left turn to 59.


65


Racing in, faces covered with hoods, you attack. Choron and Eochus attack one warrior, you the second:

CRETAN WARRIOR: Skill: 9 Stamina: 8

You may either try to kill them or knock them out. If you want to kill them, fight normally, but Minos will not be pleased to have two of his guards killed, record the word ‘rattlesnake’ on your adventure sheet. If you wish to knock them out, subtract 2 from your attack strength. Either way, if you vanquish him, turn to 64.


66


You awaken to find a knife pressed to your throat. Looking up, you see a dark eyed man holding the blade. This is Minos’ assassin. You have displeased him, and are nowpaying the price...


67


Together you agree that Eochus will feign attack on the guards before fleeing. Racing in , Eochus lunges, before rushing off. The guards follow leaving the path open. Note the word ‘Dog’ and turn to 64.


68


The switch slides in, and moments later a grinding noise sounds. Suddenly a dart whistles from the hole it sank into, burying itself in your flesh. Lose 4 stamina points from the poison. As you watch, the switch slides back out. Annoyed you consider which switch to press. Return to 77 and choose again.


69


The passages twist and bend unendingly like the inside of a honeycomb. Stalactites drip frigid water into icy pools, and silence fills the dark tunnels, lose 1 point of stamina due to tiredness. Roll 2 dice, on a 10 or above turn to 55, otherwise turn to 46. If you have ‘String’ of Daedalus add 6 to your roll


70


The day passes quickly and before long you are standing in the Megaron before Minos’ throne again, once again encountering the two bizarre red-cloaked men. He looks up from a meal of what appears to be the largest egg you have ever seen “Greetings again Achaeon, now we shall see if you are truly the hero you claim you are.” Minos declares to a crowd of Cretans. “If you succeed in slaying the Minotaur, my dagger shall be yours, and you may use it however you wish...providing it eventually leads to the fall of Samaion. Otherwise you shall simply provide entertainment for my court.” He chuckles and stands, “Follow me.”

He leads you from the Megaron and into the ante-chamber. From here, several shadowy side passages wind away. A servant holding a torch before him, Minos strides down one. Outside, night reigns, and the palace is even darker than usual. Soon you come to a flight of stairs leading downwards. Following these, you enter several more gloomy chambers, finally reaching a frigid, stygian chamber. Unlike almost every other room, there are no wall-paintings. The blank walls are dark, stained by blackened shadow. Minos’ eyes gleam again in the torchlight, not with genius now, but madness. He turns to a large metal door. “This metal was designed by my inventor, Daedalus.” He laughs, beckoning several servants, “Virtually indestructible, it served as the perfect ingress to the labyrinth. From here your task shall begin...” the slaves heave at the door, pulling away bolts, and it groans inwards, opening the hole in the wall. A pit of gloom lies beyond, strewn with rubble. Minos hands you a lit torch and several unlit ones. “Only if you have the horn of the Minotaur will we let you back through, and if you try to cheat your way through...” he leaves the sentence open-ended.

A guard approaches you, spear in hand, “Enter the labyrinth.” He intones threateningly. You turn to Choron and Eochus, who both wish you luck, then you turn, foot rising and inching over the threshold. The cavern is icily cold, the ground rough and uneven. The door slams shut behind you with the finality of a last heartbeat, and you are alone.

Lifting your torch, you examine the room. It is roughly circular, with many crags protruding from the walls. Four tunnels wind away from you. Guessing the way onwards, you set off.
Roll 2 dice, adding 8 if you have Daedalus’ string. If you roll 12 or above, turn to 55, otherwise turn to 46.


71


You wait for the last moment, and as the Minotaur nears, stare into its reddened eyes, leaping aside. It tears past you, braying in surprise, before slowing. Turn to 90.


72


You press the switch, which sinks into the door. A rumbling sounds, followed by a crack. Unexpectedly, a hissing sounds, followed by the switch rocketing back out, slamming into you, now tipped by a blade. Test your luck. If you are lucky, the blow is glancing, lose 4 stamina points. Otherwise, the blow is more grievous, lose 8 stamina points. Rubbing your wound, you see no change. Return to 77 and choose again.


73


Daedalus cheers loudly, “Thank you, oh wonderful hero.” He laughs, “Icarus, we are saved.” He whispers to you, “Once you slay the Minotaur, either come to the exit and help us leave or use the entrance to escape the labyrinth, then come and rescue us.” He turns to Icarus, “Ready the wings, my boy.” He chuckles, “Farewell Prince Achaeon.”

Heading back up the tunnel, you return to the entrance chamber. Here, you find Choron and Eochus waiting. If you have the codeword ‘dog’ on the adventure sheet, add the word ‘rattlesnake’. You tell them of your success, and head into the palace. Turn to 5.


74


The switch slides in and a rumbling noise sounds. You wince, expecting a trap, yet none is evident. The slab slides downwards, sinking into the ground with barely a squeak. Silence reigns. The passage beyond heads further down. Following it, you hear the slab rise again, however, turning, see only one unmarked switch, Continuing down, you reach another fork. To turn right turn to 6, to head left turn to 8.


75


You leap sideways as the Minotaur charges forward, racing like water from a burst dam. The Minotaur at first seems headed past you, but as it runs is turning. You rush away at full speed as it attempts to reach you before it goes past. Test your skill. If successful, turn to 83, if you fail turn to 94.


76


The button sinks into the door. The door instantly begins vibrating, sliding slowly aside, and you gaze into the workshop of Daedalus.

Machinery stands everywhere. A mechanical man sits astride a mechanical horse before you, motionless. A strange metal spider scuttles across the floor. Two pairs of bronze, or perhaps some similar metal, wings hang from the roof, flapping gently. The entire room teems with life.

A young man, perhaps sixteen, peers at you from behind a corner, “Halt!” he shouts, “Who are you?” you stare around the room in awe, light shimmers everywhere, and the sounds of blacksmith’s work. “I, Icarus, ask who are you!” shouts the man, you nod,

“Achaeon of Yaethyr,” you say,

“Do you work for Minos?” you hesitate, what should you say? “Answer, do you?”

“No.” You decide. Icarus’ face is flooded with relief,

“Do you come to save us?”

“I come seeking aid.” Icarus turns around a corner,

“Father, a man is here who doesn’t follow Minos.” He turns back to you, “Why are you here?”

“I am to face the Minotaur.” Icarus spits as soon as the words are said,

“Another ‘hero?’ the last one was quite a trickster. Deceived Ariadne, deceived Minos, deceived just about everyone.” He stares at you bitterly, polishing a dagger. You open your mouth, unsure how to respond, and just then, an old man enters the room.

“Good day, kind sir, I am Daedalus, and you are..?” he asks. He is incredibly thin, to the point of looking ill, his hair filthy, yet his eyes are full of life and intelligence. In one hand he holds a box with two protruding lumps, which are whirring round in circles. As you watch, the box promptly explodes, flames spraying across the room. Daedalus hops back, dropping it, “Ah, greetings, noble warrior. Apologies for the rather capricious mechanism here.” He pats the burning edge of his tunic, trying to extinguish it. “May I offer you anything. I fear we have little food, wine or water, but whatlittle we have you may share with us.” You accept a piece of bread and a small cup of watery wine, finishing them. Daedalus smiles, “Anyway, what would guide one to risk the dangers around my workshop, and with whom am I speaking?”

“He is Achaeon of Yaethyr.” Icarus replies before youcan move your lips, “He wants to kill the Minotaur...just like Theseus.”

“Oh yes, indeed, well I must commend you for passing the traps. Minos placed them outside of here to prevent anyone sneaking through here except for himself. Pity really, makes life a little dull, besides, come in, come in, welcome to my lair.” The room is enormous, and packed with mechanical items and suchlike. At the other end is a gate, this one wrought from black metal. As you approach it, Daedalus steers you away, “Ah, no, wouldn’t go there just yet if I were you, there lies the exit to Minos’ labyrinth. The king enjoyed the irony that our prison had a way out yet we could not use it. Originally it was just a winding tunnel for rituals. They would follow it in a dance, from there to here, only when the Minotaur came I was charged with making it a deathtrap. The entrance is around the Megaron.” A chill breeze blows from the black gulf behind the gate, accompanied by a roar. Daedalus appears unconcerned. “Don’t worry, it can’t get through, although if you’re fully equipped, there shouldn’t be any need to worry. Well...perhaps worry a lot, but not as much as you would otherwise. The item I gave Theseus was this. He picks an item from the shelves on the wall. It is a ball of shiny golden string, “This,” Daedalus says proudly, “Is ‘String’ it gives out an artificial web-like substance. This way, you can mark your trail and avoid returning to places you’ve already been. It glows in darkness, as well, aiding your search.” He glances at the door, “One of the great perils of the tunnels is that you will succumb to exhaustion before you meet our foe...now, I ask for something, if you slay the Minotaur, will you free us? We have been trapped here for years. I have equipment designed to save us from our servitude to Minos, but need to escape this chamber. If you slay the Minotaur, will you save us?” you consider. It would be truly ingracious to your host to free his prisoner, yet you may need to...or perhaps not, who knows?
To say ‘yes’ turn to 73. To say ‘no’ turn to 78.


77


The corridor sinks further and deeper, becoming a roughly hewn tunnel. This area is probably on the edge of the labyrinth. As you creep further, your frozen breath rising before you like the spirits of the dead in Hades, you hear a far off roar. You are entering the hive of passages below the palace of Knossos. Winding along, the tunnel comes to a stop at a huge slab of stone. Blocking the passage, it bears three protrusion-like switches, each numbered. To choose which one to press, turn to the number on it, they are ‘74’, ‘68’ and ‘72’.


78


“I see.” Says Daedalus bitterly, “Then you won’t mind giving back that string, will you?” he retrieves the artefact, turning away, “Begone.” He says sadly, you begin to say something but he turns, “Begone!” he snaps. Lose 2 honour points. Turning, you leave, heading back along the passage, shutting the door behind you. Returning to the entrance room, you find Choron and Eochus waiting for you. With a heavy heart, you tell them they couldn’t help. If you have the codeword ‘Dog’ then both guards are now dead (Note the word ‘Rattlesnake’. Turn to 5.


79


Turning, you try to escape its attack. Its club slams into your back, lose 1-6 stamina points (Roll 1 die) Turning, you face your foe, sword ready, turn to 90.


80


Without a moment’s pause, you bury your blade in the monstrosity. With a braying howl, the fiend’s life ends as it falls with considerable weight against you. Its eyes glower at you, and you can visibly see its soul leaving them, heading to Tartarus, where it will await you, perhaps forever. Gain 4 honour points for slaying the Minotaur!

Retrieving your blade, you set to work severing its horn for Minos. After some minutes, it comes away in your hand. Gasping with exhaustion, you stagger back through the tunnels. If you have the string of Daedalus, and wish to return to his workshop as he asked turn to 92, otherwise turn to 100.


81


The Minotaur bellows and charges, racing towards you, you ready to face the attack, lashing out as it reaches you. The beast rushes onto your sword, deduct 4 points from its stamina, unfortunately, however, it carries on coming, smashing straight into you. Thankfully, you avoid the horns themselves, however you are still sorely smashed into. Lose 6 stamina points. Staggering away, you watch the Minotaur pause. Turn to 82.

If the Minotaurs Stamina is now 0 or less Turn to 99.


82


The Minotaur raises its club, snarling loudly. Muscles and sinews bulging from its arms, it begins swinging the club through the air savagely in massive sweeps, each blow sending a cascade of displaced air across you. It strikes out with the club, aiming above your waist. Will you leap up or duck down, to leap up turn to 89, to duck turn to 84.


83


You roll aside and the Minotaur ploughs past. Turn to 90.


84


As you are crouching down, the club manages to strike the top of your head, sending it flying backwards, though the blow is glancing, the Minotaur’s strength is evident in the pain you feel, lose 4 stamina points. You shakily rise. Turn to 87.


85


Your weapons clash. Test your skill or luck. If successful, you injure your foe, remove 2 points of stamina from the Minotaur’s, otherwise, subtract 2 from your own. Turn to 96.

If the Minotaurs Stamina is now 0 or less Turn to 99.


86


You fly back as your foe crashes down before you, growling. While it recovers from the landing, it is distracted, giving you the chance to stab it. Deduct 2 stamina points from its score and turn to 90.

If the Minotaurs Stamina is now 0 or less Turn to 99.


87


The Minotaur continues assaulting you with the bludgeon. Straining against it, will you step away (Turn to 93) or counterattack (Turn to 85)


88


You call out to the gods for aid. Roll 1 die, subtracting 1 from the roll for each name in your ‘god box’, if the score is below your honour score, add 4 stamina points to your own score, or subtract 2 from the Minotaur’s, as the gods aid you. Otherwise, they ignore you, lose 2 points of honour. Now return to 90 to choose your next action (You cannot do this again).

If the Minotaurs Stamina is now 0 or less Turn to 99.


89


You throw yourself upwards and the weapon sweeps below you, the Minotaur grunts in surprise as you land again. It readies for another attack, turn to 87.


90


You face the Minotaur, one of the most terrifying monsters in Greece or Crete. The shaggy beast is snarling, red eyes blazing as it shakes it tangled hide, kicking aside the rotting corpses around it. It is readying for attack. Will you take the initiative and attack before it, wait for it, or pray for aid. Note that the Minotaur has 20 stamina points. When it sinks to 0, turn to 99. To attack turn to 91, to wait, turn to 81, to pray turn to 88.


91


You race at the Minotaur, lashing out with your sword. Subtract 1 from the Minotaur’s stamina as it yells with surprise. The Minotaur bows and charges, however, it is startled from your attack and passes you. Turn to 82.

If the Minotaurs Stamina is now 0 or less Turn to 99.


92


You head on, smeared in the blood of your butchered foe, and your own torn skin, finally arriving at a barrier, several bars across the tunnel, forming a door. Ahead, light shines. “Daedalus?” you call, and the old inventor emerges from the room ahead, grinning, “You did it. Well done!” he chuckles, opening the door, he asks you for the key to the workshop, which you give him. “Now Icarus and I shall flee.” He tells you, lifting items from the shelves, three boxes of bronze, from each of which emerges an enormous set of wings, seemingly made from metal, but covered in the feathers of countless birds. He hands you one, “I gift you with mechanical wings, almost as good as the sandals of Hermes himself, or Pegasus, may it aid you in times of need. While I obeyed dread Minos, crafting whatever he desired for him, I gathered whatever was left from my work, building these with which to escape.The feathers we gathered from servants, or the rare occasions we were allowed outside. Use this pair well, but do not forget that these feathers have only just been attached. The oil holding them to the wings is still damp, and so should they be warmed, or struck by water, they will be destroyed. Now Icarus my boy, come.” Icarus runs into the room, apparently worried. “Father, I must...”

“Fear not, the time is nigh, we must flee.” Daedalus inserts the disc into the door, turning it, Icarus yells,

“Father...I told Minos, for I feared that the prince would betray us!” the door slides away, showing a tunnel packed with warriors, their leader, a giant of a man in a boar-tusk helmet steps forward, sword in one hand, figure of eight shield in the other “Good evening, scheming Daedalus,” he says quietly, danger evident in his voice, “Your son told us you planned...”

“Icarus?” gasps Daedalus,

“I am sorry father...I...”

“Have failed, you treacherous wretch!” bellows the captain, “I fear that Daedalus must learn that his genius will not protect his son forever. You must learn a lesson, inventor, that while we need you, we do not need Icarus, sever his son’s hands...” Daedalus buckles the box to his back, wings unfolding, “Icarus, we must make good our escape!” he howls. Icarus attaches his wings as his father bounds towards the warriors, wings bearing him aloft, knocking down a dozen and allowing him to enter the passage beyond, Daedalus calls to his son, “Remember, should we still be airborne by tomorrow morning, do not fly near the sun, or your wings will not last!” he tears up the passage. Icarus races after him, wings flapping, he bounds over the soldiers lying on the floor, turning to you, “Good luck Achaeon.” He yells, before racing on into the tunnel to the surface.

The warriors arise again, most of them race back up the tunnel after the two inventors. Two do not. They raise their spears, advancing, clearly hoping to gain praise for killing you. The warriors look poorly trained, and, lunging, you easily hack the first down. The second cries out and attacks:

CRETAN WARRIOR: Skill: 6 Stamina: 6

If you vanquish your foe , you hear the clatter of footsteps descending towards you. Wasting no time, you sprint back into the labyrinth just as a horde of soldiers emerge into the workshop. Dashing past junctions and forks, you soon lose your pursuers in the maze. Turn to 100.


93


Stepping back, you watch the Minotaur continue savagely striking the air. After several moments, it goes still. Suddenly it squats, muscles contracting. With a bellow of rage, the Minotaur hurls itself through the air towards you, club borne aloft. Will you flee, (Turn to 79) leap back (Turn to 86) Or ready your blade for it to land on (Turn to 98).


94


One of the Minotaur’s horns strikes you a glancing blow. Lose 4 stamina points. Groaning in pain, you watch it race past, slowing. Turn to 90.


95


You lower your blade, you cannot bring yourself to slay this creature, even with knowledge of its past crimes. The Minotaur whimpers...and leaps forward, horns arching towards you. Staggering back, you lash out with your blade as its horns tear into your chest. Lose 8 points of stamina. Turn to 80.


96


The Minotaur hurls itself through the air towards you, club borne aloft. Will you flee, (Turn to 79) leap back (Turn to 86) Or ready your blade for it to land on (Turn to 98).


97


The woman turns to you and you recognise her...Ariadne. She smiles and raises one hand. To your horror it bears a knife. She nods to you, the beautiful and scarred sides of her faces seeming to bear more in common than ever before. Then...

Minos turns as she lunges. The knife sinks into his stomach and he groans in agony as a trail of blood falls to the floor. Ariadne drags forth the blade, snarling, “Let that punish you for your cruelty, father!” she bellows, Stabbing him again. He gasps, shuddering and crumpling to the floor,
“Daughter...” he wheezes, “I curse you...may the Enriyes strike you down in vengeance...” all around, warriors are emerging from the crowd, unsheathing their weapons. The two red cloaked men emerge. The smaller, bald one holds high his sword, “Protect the king!” he screams, racing for the princess. In a blur, he appears beside her, sword touching her throat. He throws her aside to three warriors, bending over the king, holding some blackened plant to the wound. Ariadne strains against her captors, “Achaeon!” she sobs, knife falling from her fingers. “You promised to help me...do not abandon me!” The crowd turns to you in shock, gasping as one. Minos is unconscious now, while all others watch the proceedings. Will you aid the princess and risk Minos’ disfavour, or leave her to her fate? To aid her turn to 102, to leave her turn to 109.


98


The Minotaur slams down on your blade, squealing in agony. Subtract 8 points from its stamina as it leaps off, gasping in agony. Gain 1 luck point for turning the Minotaur’s size and strength against it. Turn to 90

If the Minotaurs Stamina is now 0 or less Turn to 99.


99


The Minotaur howls in agony. You tug your sword free as blood flows onto your hands from the wound. The beast staggers back, stumbling over the remains of one of its enemies, falling to the floor. Whimpering, the fiend raises its hands, begging for life. You stand, sword in hand, with this creature’s life in your hands. Will you finish it off? To do so turn to 80, to not kill it turn to 95.


100


It takes some time to find the door to the labyrinth. If you lack the string of Daedalus, lose 4 stamina points from tiredness. Chuckling with delight at finding your way out at last, you strike it wearily, “Minos, the beast is dead, I have slain it and here is the horn to prove it!” you declare. You hear speech on the other side of the door, then the portal creaks open, revealing the light of many lamps. Blinded momentarily, you blink at the crowd before you, all staring at this blood soaked warrior, sword in one hand, horn in the other. Minos bounds forward, grabbing the horn from you. He hands it to a nearby scrawny man. “Haruspex, scan it.” He snaps. The pale man, grips the horn and shuts his eyes, silent for a moment,

“The Minotaur is no longer alive, my Lord.” He croaks. Minos cheers loudly, “Congratulations Achaeon, you have bested one of the greatest of fiends, Poseidon’s curse upon me, spawn of my treasonous wife. You are a worthy champion, but first, let my companions tend to your wounds...”
After several hours recovering, you are feeling the benefit of the dozens of blessings the priests have given you. Restore your stamina to its initial level. You may also recover your shield, javelin and/or bow and arrows. You tell Choron and Eochus your tale, wish they listen to with great interest. However, you never forget the true reason you are here.

Minos leads you beyond the Megaron, into his private chambers. A maze of rooms leads to a final chamber, empty but for a stone plinth. Upon it rests a dark bronze knife, not particularly impressive to gaze upon, but with godly workmanship. Not a nick or scar mars it, and the blade looks sharper than any you have ever seen. An aura of power surrounds it, filling you with a sense of awe.

“Many years ago, when I married my bull-loving wife, many of the gods gave me wedding presents.” He tells you, “From Hephaestus, lord of forges, I was given this blade. It’s edge never loses its sharpness, and it has been used in several of the most sacred rituals.” He holds his hand above the knife and the air seems to tingle, “It is far weaker than even the weakest of the gods’ weapons, yet is still hugely powerful. It can be used in many of the most sacred, or heinous, of rituals, which can rarely be performed.” He grasps it, holding it aloft. “I gift you with this artefact, use it in your quest to kill Samaion.” He hands you the weapon and you feel the energy filling your hands, warm, static shocks pricking your fingers. In combat it is not hugely useful, since its blade is so short, so if you choose to fight using it you must lower your attack strength by 3, however its wicked edge means that it will inflict 3 points of damage rather than the usual 2. Gain 3 points of luck for gaining this amazing artefact!

Returning to the Megaron, you and Minos find dozens filling the room. You meet up with Choron and Eochus, showing them your fabulous gift. Examining it, you find tiny carvings on it, depicting a group of riders hunting a lion. You spot a veiled woman approaching Minos. If you possess a gemstone turn to 97. Otherwise turn to 108.


101


The coils surround Alecto’s neck and your arms, preventing her escaping you. As your lungs cry out for air, the Fury beats her mighty wings with the might of the gates of Tartarus slamming shut. As she rises for the surface, you are towed along with her. Finally, the two of you explode forth into the thunder-filled air. The other two Furies hover a few yards above, watching, yet nervous of entering the water. As the bedraggled pair of you burst from the depths, you gulp in the air, satisfying the hunger in your lungs. Alecto, meanwhile, is unable to breathe, her throat constricted beneath her own whip. Having difficulty flying with her sodden wings, she spasms through the sky, mere inches from the waves. More blood seems to be running from the creature’s eyes no, as if she is nearing tears. The other two Furies, however, are still free. Tisiphone cracks her blazing whip, slicing it cleanly through that of Alecto, separating you from the writhing Eumenide. As you fall away, damaged wings twitching feebly, the two broken ends of the whip still in your hand, you watch the still choking Alecto clutch at the coils around her throat, gasping, before despairingly diving back into the waves, perhaps to return to whatever gate she came here used to arrive here from the Underworld. You cheer with success, a moment before crashing into the icy ocean again. Looking up while treading water, you watch, the two remaining Furies, Megaera and Tisiphone, circling you from above. They are now enraged and humiliated, rather than merely seeking entertainment. They both hover above while you battle the current. Megaera laughs, “Now, proud Achaeon, we will have revenge not just upon you, but those aboard your ship.” She cries, descending towards you wither sister. The two of them grab you in their claws, keeping you at arm’s length in unbreakable grips to prevent you again escaping. The pair soar through the night, the crests of the waves below slapping the tips of your toes as you come back into sight of your ship.You feel both galad and sorrowful. You have in one night slain the Minotaur, escaped Minos and now defeated one of the dreaded Kindly Ones, the true acts of a hero, yet now you and all your companions will die. You try to console yourself with the knowledge that all will speak of you and your noble acts, though you fear none will ever know now, except Minos. As the ship becomes clearer, Tisiphone hisses in your ear. “We will return you to your men. How terrible will be their despair when they discover that the one they hoped would save them from our presence has in fact returned us to them. And how great will be your shame that you have brought us upon your men?” she cackles, hurling you free. You soar, before falling painfully to the deck. You look up to see all your men staring at you in awe. Before them is a sodden, bedraggled, bloody warrior, the broken remnants of Daedalus’ wings still attached to his back (Since they are now useless, cross them from your adventure sheet).. Eochus rises first. “Our captain has bested the dreadful Kindly Ones!” he shouts in joy, “All hail...” you sob into the planks, hands hammering the wood in sorrow, “My friends, I have indeed defeated one of the three daughters of Ouranos, but two yet remain to wreak their vengeance upon us...” you gaze up at the sky. The shapes of the two Enriyes emerge from the clouds, laughter gushing from their bloody lips. Both descend towards the boat, content only with the torture and death of all aboard...Except Ariadne seems to have a halo of light glowing around her head. The Furies slow to a halt in mid air. “What is this?” cries Megaera. You yourself are uncertain, but you pray that it will somehow aid you all. Ariadne smiles at you. “It is the blessing of my beloved Lord Dionysus.” She says, softly, “He knows that now he has hope of again meeting me.” Her eyes roll up into her head as she falls into a trance. She mutters a few final words, her voice now strangely thick, like an Oracle, filled with the vapours of the Earth, “You are among the Cyclades...you must land on an island...” she croaks, before falling silent. The Cyclades are many miles from Crete, far too far to reach so soon, yet you trust the voice. From the darkness emerge the shapes of islands. Dionysus must be willing to aid you on one of these islands, but which one? You spy four islands nearby which you recognize, Antiparos, Paros, Naxos, and Ios. Above, the Enriyes still screech for vengeance, so you must choose which island to head for fast.

To sail for Antiparos turn to 9.
To sail for Paros turn to 16.
To sail for Naxos turn to 29.
To sail for Ios turn to 30.


102


You and your companions charge through the crowd, amid horrified shock. With one blow you hack down one of her captors, while Choron and Eochus battle the other two. Gain 1 honour point and turn to 111.


103


You proceed to lead your foes in a series of convoluted twists and turns, leading them on. A sudden bump causes you to lose the spear Choron tossed you just now, as it spirals down to the dusty grass. Cursing you turn back as they follow, teetering along the steep hillside you are leading them down. Finally, one teeters a little too far. You look back as a chariot, a little higher up the hillside than you, stretches out from the edge... With a groaning sound from both the wheels and the those on it, it falls sideways, crashing downwards, spiralling, shards of wood flying in every direction as the horses struggle to escape, dragged down with it. As they fall however, the warrior on board, now shattered and horribly injured, forces his way from the wreckage. Blood covering his face, he limps a few paces, raising his spear and hurling it at you, before dissolving to the ground with a sigh. The spear arcs through the sky, looming above you like some vision from Iris or Morpheus. Steering sideways, you strive to evade it. Test your luck. If you are lucky then you evade the spear. Otherwise, you are struck a glancing blow, losing 3 stamina points. You continue along, returning to your companions, pursued by the final chariot. Turn to 117


104


Minos’ eyes snap open, blazing with fury, “So, you conspired against me, Yaethyrian? Then my warriors told the truth, you did aid Daedalus’ egress, and now this? I have no need for you, kill them all!” with this he falls back, coughing up blood. The red cloaked man now has a glowing light flowing from his hands onto the wound. For a moment, the soldier’s cloak flutters and his appearance changes into a shadowy, twisted thing beyond comprehension, terrible top behold, then he returns to normal, tending to his king. Nine Cretans race towards your companions, charging with rage. Each of you faces three of them:

Skill: Stamina:
CRETAN WARRIOR:7 6
CRETAN WARRIOR 8 6
CRETAN CAPTAIN: 9 6

If you defeat them, turn to 108.


105


One of the soldiers plunges his sword into Ariadne, who cries out, collapsing. As she falls, her eyes meet yours, tears falling from them like stars from the broken sky. You feel horrifying guilt. Lose 2 points of luck and 10 points of honour. You, Choron and Eochus flee the palace, Cretan warriors following you, their shields tapping the backs of their necks and ankles. Tearing through the crowds, you emerge into the night, racing down the hill. Turn to 112.


106


You snatch at the wings of the Eumenide, trying to stop her flight. The wings are pure muscle, however, unrelenting to your hands. Meanwhile, as you lean over her shoulder, the Fury attacks. The snakes on her head lash at the back of your neack, burying their fangs there and lacing you with poison. A moment later, the teeth of the Fury herself are sank there as well, ripping deep within your throat. Convulsing with pain, you can do little as she pushes you away from her. Falling, you collide with another Fury, who in turn tears at you with her claws, the pain tearing your sanity to shreds. She in turn tosses you to the third, who tears the end of her whip across your face, blinding you. The suffering goes on for several days, with the arrival of winged Thanatos, bringer of death, eventually coming as a respite.


107


You run onwards, hoofbeats drumming in your ears before the fleet chariots. A hissing sound and you feel the furious pain in your back as an arrow sinks into it. Lose 3 stamina points. The chariots accelerate and you groan. You have no choice but to fight them. Turn to 101.


108


Your companions battle past their enemies. You rush to Ariadne, knocking aside two of her captors. The final one wrestles you for her. If you win the first two consecutive attack rounds turn to 111. If he does turn to 105

WARRIOR Skill: 8


109


Did you help Daedalus escape? If so turn to 104, otherwise turn to 105.


110


You and the spearman fight, pushing at each other. You must lose 2 points of skill for this fight as you are steering the chariot while you fight.

SPEARMAN: Skill: 9 Stamina:9

If you kill him, turn to 115.


111


You force the man back, and Ariadne staggers away. “Thank you, Prince.” She stammers. Around you, the crowd is erupting, warriors charging from all directions. Minos has regained consciousness, and is simply staring at you with true hate in his pale eyes. Over thirty are attacking, and you are aware that you cannot best them all. Instead, the four of you race for the exit...

The crowd backs away from you, allowing you a path from the Megaron, into the ante-chamber. Here you encounter several surprised soldiers, who are too shocked to attack. Sprinting on, you see a spear fly past you, clattering off the wall. Passing through the fore-court and entrance chamber, you burst out into the night. The warm air comes as a welcome change after the dead chill of the labyrinth, the shadow of Nyx, queen of the night, covering the earth, only the dim light of Selene illuminating your path. The coarse grass of the hill scrapes your sandals as you near the city of Knossos, while behind you rise the war cries of Minos’ forces. Euphoria lacing your veins as you head for your ship, turn to 112.


112


Racing between chirruping crickets, you come within sight of your ship lying upside down on the shore. You yell out to your men as you near. They rise, dragging the vessel towards the sea while the sound of your enemies’ feet hammers within your ears. As the boat nears the domain of Titan-born Poseidon, the hill behind you seethes with Cretans. They number in hundreds, massively outnumbering your own forces. You gaze in horror, knowing you cannot set sail before they reach you. Beseeching the Fates for aid, you ready for combat. If you have ‘Ares’ in your god box turn to 117, otherwise turn to 114.


113


You remember the wings. Perhaps you can fly, leading the Enriyes away from your men. You attach the wings to your back, and hear them whirring into action. Arms outspread, you find that by moving your hands against a series of tiny levers you can guide the wings. You turn to your men, “Sail on, I shall lead the spawn of Ouranos away from you all.” You cry over the wind and shrieking. Leaping from the ship, you let the wings hold your wait, sweeping over the sea. Above, the Kindly Ones wail in surprise. The winds of Aeolus whipping around your body as you soar onwards, you glance back, seeing three deformed silhouettes shooting above the surf, heads framed by hissing serpents in the place of hair. They are gaining on you. You frown with confusion. You can only see two silhouettes following you...where could the third one be? Terror fills your body with the realisation that these two have not been simply pursuing you, but herding you towards a certain place. The lightning of Olympus again shreds the sky and now you see the third one, wings pounding to the beat of your heart, looming ahead, descending from the clouds. Her form becomes larger, more visible. A pallid, corpse like face, burning fiery eyes gushing blood in the place of tears, the fluid marring her already hideous features into a grotesque stygian nightmare. More blood dribbles in the place of saliva from her fanged maw. Serpents emerge from her head like hair, hissing and spitting in all directions. Her shoulders are inhumanly sinuous, sprouting filthy black wings, which swoop across the air with surprising grace. Her taloned hands, slightly furry, bear a whip of glowing flame. She hisses with delight as she nears you. Glancing backwards, you find yourself surrounded on all sides by the monstrous Furies. The one ahead cackles, nearing. Desperately you try to dodge past her, but the crack of her whip is far faster than you. In a moment, you are enveloped in burning agony. You writhe, screaming in pain as the marrow of your bones seems to melt. The Eumenide screeches all the more, enjoying your suffering. You dimly notice the other two Enriyes approaching, but the one holding you barks at them, “Megaera, Tisiphone, leave him!” she snarls, tightening the coils of flame around you. The other two split apart, one going around her on each side. The one holding you pulls on the whip, causing it to drag you closer to her. Smiling, she raises her free hand, the claws lengthening. “I alone shall punish the crimes of Achaeon of Yaethyr.” She chuckles, “For breaking the immortal laws of Xenia, disrespecting his host, stealing his daughter, killing his companions.” You stare into her burning, blood encircled eyes as she raises her taloned hand to rake at your flesh. You are closer to her now, and have managed to free one hand from the binding, yet how can you fight vengeance itself? To attack the Fury by trying to harm her eyes turn to 116, to try holding her wings turn to 106, to try to pry her hand from the whip turn to 118.


114


The massive force is upon you all in moments. You battle valiantly, as do your men. Eochus slays the leader of Minos’ army before he falls, while Choron slays forty of the warriors before his life ends, with a spear protruding from his chest. You yourself kill more than either, battling on until you alone stand,yet you are outnumbered, and in the end you die. Thanatos, Death, takes your hand, leading you to the Underworld, and you will know forever that you were remembered for your bravery.


115


One of the crew rises, eyes wide with panic, “He is to blame!” he yells, pointing at you, “He displeased Minos, he is the one the Furies seek, yet we will all die because of him!” Choron rises, “Your captain has striven to choose well with every decision. Every action of his has been noble. He risked his life to save this princess here, is that a crime?” the sailor sits again, nervously, and Choron turns to you, “Yet I fear that we will all die because of Minos’ curse if you do not somehow stop the Kindly Ones who circle above us.” Though he appears calm, you can see the panic in his eyes. The stormy waves heave, spinning the ship in circles, making movement difficult.You stare up at the cacophonous swarm that the Furies form. Your mind races, the Enriyes seek you alone, perhaps you can lead them away from the ship...If you have a pair of Daedalus’ wings turn to 113, otherwise turn to 118.


116


Your hand lashes for her eyes. Her lids flick over the eyes as you do so, and the wailing Eumenide swings her claws at you, but while she is temporarily blinded you have an advantage. Her two sisters circle the pair of you, crying out for her, “Alecto!” wails Megaera, sweeping past you. Meanwhile, Alecto, your enemy, is jerking through the rain-lashed air in a desperate attempt to shake you off. Here, the whip in which you are enveloped is saving you, preventing your fall. She snarls, claws raking your arm suddenly, but you ignore the pain. Then, however, she speaks. “My sisters,” she howls, “Aid me!” you groan in fear. One of these fiends is difficult enough to battle, but all three? Then, however, Alecto makes a wrong move. With a great spasm, attempting again to shake you off, she dives downwards. Unknown to her, however, the two of you are mere feet above the surface of the world encircling ocean. In a moment, you are both shooting into the depths, freezing salty brine filling your eyes, ears and mouth, and scraping your skin. The whip continues to glow, but its pain diminishes (Though the skin burnt by it hurts all the more in the seawater). Unused to the sea, the Fury writhes all the more, releasing the whip from her hand. As the coils loosen and the current drags you deeper into the realm of the Nymphs, she tries to kick away and swim for the surface. Snatching handfuls of the whip, however, you loop it around her. You wings are almost completely ruined now, feathers falling away into the depths of world encircling Pontus from a mixture of water and the damage from the whip. The Furies are immortal and beyond any human in the skills of battle, and in most battles Alecto could slay you in mere moments. Here, however, she is in a domain she is unused to, while you have some experience of swimming. You strive to entangle her in her own whip, battling as you both sink deeper...

ALECTO Skill: 7 Stamina: 30

Each attack round, you will try to fully entangle her neck. She meanwhile, tries to evade it long enough for you to drown. Each attack round, you will lose 1 stamina point from asphyxiation. If either of you win an attack round, no stamina is taken. Instead, if you win, you have entangled her further, and if she wins or there is a draw, she has stopped you. If you win three attack rounds before you drown, turn to 101.


117


At the head of the force of Cretans you can see the priest of Ares, blade in hand. However, a few hundred feet away, you see him slow to a halt, burying his weapon in the earth. The other Cretans halt in confusion, and you see him shouting at them. Some of the warriors join him, while others continue charging. You realise that the worshippers of Ares are refusing to ally with non-devotees against one favoured by the war-god. The remaining force slows however, staring in horror. Around you is a flickering glow of red fire. Many turn and flee in despair. You stare at the priest, realising what has happened. Your noble stand against these overwhelming odds has pleased the son of Zeus and Hera, and you have been blessed with Ares’ protection. Before you, a few warriors continue their charge. Lunging forward, you turn on them. Their blades melt in their hands on touching your aura, while your own sword cleaves easily through a dozen foes, their armour dissolving before it. As they fall, the others back away in horror. You smile in triumph. Near the back of the horde of Cretans, Minos spits the ground in frustration, howling at his archers to shoot your crew. Yet none can bring themselves to risk angering Ares. A shout attracts your attention. Behind you, your comrades are ready to sail. You dive into the boat and set sail, howling insults at the lines of warriors lining the beach. You smile with victory. Before you, however, the army has parted around three figures. At the center stands King Minos, and on either side stand the two red cloaked servants of his. The two servants are muttering, the words carrying out to you. One is pouring a rhyton of wine onto the sand, while the other holds a struggling black ram in his skinny arms. The wine holding one begins “ Gods of the Underworld, hear our King’s prayer. Hades, lord of the depths of the earth, and flower garlanded Persephone, accept our sacrifices. And Hecate and primordial Nyx let this please you, and oldest of all things, mother Gaia, and bringer of death, winged Thanatos.” The rhyton is empty, and its holder draws a knife, slashing the rams throat. The struggling beast’s life-bearing blood splashes across the sand, sinking deep into abysmal Tartarus. Silence reigns as the animal goes still, falling to the beach, where several soldiers, cover it in sand. The waves seem to go still, and a bitter smell strikes your nostrils. The boat is escaping as fast as it can, but the voice of Minos is still heard...
“Curse you Achaeon! I call upon the Enriyes, spirits of vengeance, to punish you for your crimes!” he howls across the ocean, then...”May each one of your crew call their own name across the sea.” He begins cackling dementedly before you, thunder booming overhead as his curse is heard. A bolt of Zeus’ lightening crackles through the sky, and you feel that you glimpse three winged silhouettes framed against it. Wingbeats sound from all directions. Your mind races with panic. Surely even Minos couldn’t raise the Furies themselves from the Underworld? The bringers of vengeance, born from the blood of the Sky when it was struck by its son. Your mouth is dry...
“Row, men, row!” you manage, bellowing to your companions. Each man is filled with terror, their arms straining against their oars. Above you, an animalistic shrieking sounds. You glance at your arms, and despair to see that Ares’ protection is no longer on you. Shadowy forms flash across the night sky, occasionally allowing you to glimpse their nightmarish features. You glimpse hissing serpents, blackened wings, doglike paws and flailing whips. Your mind goes blank with terror. Can any man escape these terrible beings? You wonder.
A splash of moisture falls upon you arm. You glance at it, expecting rain, and feel both Phobos and Deimos, terror and panic, gnawing at your mind. On your arm is no rain, but blood. Another drop falls against Choron, the blood dripping from your pursuers. Around you your crew are moaning in terror. There is a sudden noise, a mixture of a lion’s roar, a dog’s bark, a wolf’s howl and countless other noises beyond human imagining. A speeding shot of feathers, claws, fur and snakes blurs before you, snatching up one of your screaming crew. Above you, his screams continue, accompanied by the cracks of whips, and the sound of ripping and snarling. Blood rains upon you all, no longer from the furies, but your comrade, until the pieces of him fall upon you all. You wipe blood from your eyes and realise that you alone have been drenched in your comrade’s fluids. Around you, no one else has...for you alone do the Potniae hunt. If Ariadne is aboard your ship turn to 115, otherwise turn to 119.


118


You snatch for the whip. The muscles in your enemy’s hands are like bronze, however, unrelenting. The whip itself burns your fingers where they meet, making their retrieval difficult. The coils around you dig in further. Lose 4 stamina points. If survive, you find yourself unable to steal the whip. You must attack by another method. To attack the Fury by trying to harm her eyes turn to 116, to try holding her wings turn to 106


119


One of the crew rises, eyes wide with panic, “He is to blame!” he yells, pointing at you, “He displeased Minos, he is the one the Furies seek, yet we will all die because of him!” several others rise, shouting in agreement, “Perhaps if we throw him from the ship, then the Kindly Ones will take him, but leave us!” he shouts. He and his comrades draw their swords, while Choron and many others fight back. The mutineers battle your crew for several minutes, with the Furies stealing one of your defenders every few minutes, increasing the panic, until Choron and yourself stand alone against the mutineers. You turn to Choron, “Do not fight them. I will die, but you need not.” You say gently, then you are thrown overboard by your other men. The Furies snatch you up as you fall, and your suffering is great, however you die knowing that Choron and your crew survived, which gives some consolation.


120


“Normally, I would allow you to kill him, but in this case we are with someone who has behaved quite honourably. The gods are divided as to whether or not they support him, so given the debate, we must consider his actions, he has followed the law of Xenia in every way apart from stealing White-Armed Ariadne, and none can deny that in many cases Minos himself did not follow Xenia. Since I agree with what he did there, I am afraid I cannot let him suffer either.” The two Eumenides howl in frustration, “He cannot escape us forever!” Tisiphone snarls, “We must punish him!” Dionysus nods,

“I must allow his crew to have a captain, however. You will leave him unharmed during his voyage.” The Furies wail in despair, leaping back up into the air to hover, “We will leave them, then, but Achaeon, if ever we have the chance to punish you, we will!” Megaera howls, before the pair of horrors turn to flap off into the night.

Dionysus turns you. “I have saved you, Achaeon, from death, because I have observed that you have behaved nobly during this adventure, but if you should behave less nobly in future, I may be less forgiving.” He turns to Ariadne, “I must thank you for bringing me back lovely Ariadne. My dear, I feared you would die in the palace of Knossos and descend to Hades, and that we would never again meet.” He takes her shaking hand,

“My lord...I...I must thank you.” She says, “And Achaeon, I must thank you or saving me. I wish you luck in reclaiming Yaethyr.” You thank her as she and Dionysus fade from vision, leaving only a sense of well being (Restore your skill, stamina, luck and crew strike to their initial scores. the tiger and Dionysus’ followers following them to holy Mount Olympus. Now you stand with your crew on the beach on the Island of Naxos, the rain beating your brows. You gaze at the sea, thanking the gods and your companions for your success in claiming Minos’ dagger.You know not where the other details of the spell are, but you hope that you will soon find them. You catch several deer on the island, sacrificing them before holding a feast which lasts through the night, until rosy fingered dawn rises above the sea, bringing with her the day, and the next stage of your journey.

END OF BOOK 1