Part V

What Grimzore, Drissle, and Spud did not like at all turned out to be some unjustifiably bitter herbal tea.
It was never presented, however, because just as their would-be-party-host reached to retrieve it, he very unsurprisingly died of heatstroke. (The perils of overdressing for the occasion cannot be overstated.)
"Not good," muttered Grimzore, stroking his regulation four foot beard in the regulation way.
"Not good? Not good? What could possibly be not good about some guy who says he has something we will not like very much at all dropping dead? That's bloody convenience for you, if you ask me."
The wizard glanced at Drissle condescendingly.
"It is not good because he, like you, was summoned here by the fluctuations of an adventure field. It should be evident that he could not have lasted very long in the desert in that outfit."
"And if he was, then so what?"
"So this would be the biggest adventure field ever recorded. Which means (A) I shall likely have to put up with your sorry rhetoric for a longer while than I would like, not to mention save your life Zeus knows how many times, and (B) very bad things are happening."
"Bad things?"
"Very bad things."
There was an awkward pause.
"Like what?"
"Do you have a village? A home? A family?"
"Sort of."
"Not anymore."
"They're dead. Slain by the D.E."
"The what?"
"The D.E. The Designated Enemy. An otherwise alright group of evil blokes who just so happen to kill and destroy everything you hold dear for no apparent reason."
The wizard paused fatefully.
"You have my condolences."
"It's ok. That happened a long time ago. I got over it with counselling."
"Wait, then you know who our enemy is?"
"Oh, yeah, sure. If it's the same guy, I mean."
"Who is it! You must tell me immediately!"
"He used to go by Evil Prince Zanzu. After a while, however, he got over the evil bit, apologized, and gave me this smashing outfit amongst other things. But everyone calls him 'Zan the Man' now. Sometimes when we go out drinking together the 'Evil Prince Zanzu' thing will come up and there will be an assassination attempt or something. He doesn't really mind, though. He's kind of immortal."
Spud, who had been orbitting the wizard, zipped behind Drissle in fear, sensing that the wizard was suddenly not very pleased with his company. In fact, the wizard's eyes flashed with a unfriendly fire before calmly simmering to a suppressed rage.
"It's your fault. Whatever happens is your fault."
"You were supposed to go on an adventure, you dimwitted ape. Anyone else would have dedicated their lives to exacting calculated vengeance against their family's murderer. But you, you forgave him? You're drinking buddies now? That is the worst anti-climax I have ever heard."
"Hey. I take life as it comes at me. If I'm called to a life of vengeance, sure, whatever, I guess I'll do what I have to. But if the guy apologizes, I hardly see the point in making things difficult."
"You have made things difficult. Extraordinarily difficult."
"Hey," Spud announced, "if boring is the generative problem here, you two aren't helping very much. I suggest we make camp. Because it's dark. And if something horrible is going to inevitably assault us, I'd like to have a bit of rest first."