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Life, of a Sort

They guys at Obsidian Portal posed a challenge on this week’s podcast: come up with a more interesting origin story for Dungeons & Dragons, in a paragraph or so. Here’s mine:

Gary set the quill down eagerly, stretching his raw fingers and checking the folds of his skin for burn marks. When he was satisfied of their absence, he scanned back through the parchment that littered his heavy oak desk, perusing the sigils that opened each chapter, the formulae that called forth the contained drama, the wards that kept the monsters in their proper section. He smiled as he recalled his friend the Fighting man, and mourned that the writeup for the Cleric did not do justice to the wonder of his remembrances. But they had life, of a sort. He had given them that much. They had sacrificed their lives to fold the world upon them, and as he escaped he had promised to tell their tale, to let their exploits be never forgotten, to let the dungeons and dragons carry their world on forever, in the imaginations of so many. Life, of a sort.

In truth, I owe a lot to Jerry Holkins’ Gygax obituary and its wonderful line “Some books contain the machinery required to create and sustain universes”. A lot of power there; I hope I put it to good use.