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The Copper Lining

                              by Jonathon Pierce

The Silver Chalice of Sesian touched the Waters of the Artesian of Remembrance. The Chalice proved its worth, for in a moment, the Artesian dried up. Kirk stared at the Chalice, which now contained the entire Waters of the Artesian.

He waved his arms in an effort to call his various spies which he had placed earlier. One by one exact replicas of Kirk himself appeared next to him. The replicas merged into Kirk, adding to his strength. The last replica, however, was quite changed. It had tried to re-merge, yet somehow it had become an energy creature. It stood, in blazing glory, staring at Kirk.

Kirk seemed quite pleased at this new development. He wondered at the replica. Which of his enemies was capable of doing this feat? No matter, he told himself, it would be useful.

"Welcome, I shall call you KErk. You shall serve me, as I am your master." Kirk commanded.

"As you wish, my master." KErk replied, his voice sounding rather hollow.

"Follow me." Kirk led the way down the hole, which once was the Artesian. After dropping several feet, the hole turned into a steep shaft, slippery and smooth. They slid several yards and came to rest at the base of a fountain.

The fountain was lavishly garnished with precious stones and metals. A clear liquid sprayed from the top, and after splashing on three small discs, came to rest in a shallow pool. The fountain held the Waters of the Pool of Remembrance in reserve, for use in extreme emergencies. It marked the boundry for the Underground City of Remembrance.

The City, now in ruins, was once the center of Alarius. Here, the Council of Alarius met and discussed important issues away from the distractions of Illustris. The Councilmen felt safe here, for surrounding the entire city was an energy shield. The shield was impenetrable by any conventional weapon, or magic spell. The Councilmen had been quite safe.

Kirk touched the fountain. The sizzle of frying flesh erupted into the room. Great pain permeated throughout his entire body. He rearranged his molecules, and with a sigh of relief, dissolved the pain.

KErk examine the field and slowly changed his particles. Sound energy was quite a valuable tool. He charged at the field and reflected off. The sonic boom, created from KErk's misuse of his power, almost ruptured Kirk's eardrums. With a warning glance from him, KErk tried again.

His particles vibrated faster and faster until he had changed completely into ultraviolet light. He easily passed through the field to the other side. A brief search later, KErk had found the control room. He shut off the energy field, allowing his master to enter the city.

Kirk knew the exact location of the Copper Chalice of Remembrance and headed straight for it. It was located in the Museum of Remembrance, a large building made of marble and obsidian. He walked up the cracked marble steps and entered the majestic structure. Surprisingly, the Museum had survived the years of neglect and decay.

He walked down a long corridor and into the History Section. The room was filled with vast treasures of days gone by. Kirk, however, was not interested in these. He touched the glass case containing the Copper Chalice. It turned into sand, covering the nearby floor. He took the Chalice and returned to the fountain.

"Only Enad would be so bold," he reasoned, "in trying to destroy me." He gave long and complicated instructions to KErk, who left immediately to comply to Kirk's command. Kirk, himself, changed into a Gamma Ray and left for Furanose: one Chalice still remained.

* * * * *

KErk arrived just off the coast of Able. He had followed Kirk's instructions to the letter. He changed his form to electrical energy and wrapped himself tightly around a metal pole, which he had found in an old junkyard.

As the electricity began to flow through the metal pole, it created a magnetic field. KErk increased the energy turning the pole into a giant electromagnet. Its magnetic field expanded, until it reached its goal.

A small figure, unable to withstand the force of the electromagnet, flew from the protection of land. It struck the magnet, its metallic surfaces clinging to the pole. KErk, having achieved his prime directive, returned to his quasi-normal state.

He then encased his prize in a box made of electrical energy. Kwamkut tried furiously to escape from the box, but knew it was a hopeless case.

KErk changed into wind energy and soared off into the distance, blowing his prize with him.

* * * * *

Kirk arrived at the Lake of Wisdym. He smiled at his own ingeniousness. The Silver Chalice glowed serenely as he touched the water with the Copper Chalice. The entire contents of the Lake of Wisdym evaporated and condensed itself into the Copper Chalice.

He lowered himself down into the empty lake. Directly in the center of the lake stood a statue of Venus. He admired the beauty of the statue for one brief moment and then touched it. The statue's molecular structure altered to the form of ground beef.

He reached into the beef and recovered the last remaining cup: the Golden Chalice of Venus. He changed his form into a vulture and flew off toward the sea.

He landed on an indistinct stretch of beach. He returned to normal form to admire the ocean. He had now to wait, for time was on his side: With Iffley out of the way, Jonathon posed no threat; Enad was powerless without his pet; Blue dare not attack with his wife in such a vulnerable position; and lastly, Taft was not a fool. He laughed at the ocean and at Jonathon Pierce, but mostly he laughed for his own cleverness.


 © 1984, 

L. Charles, D. Conrad, A. Duncan, Enad the Great, J. Pierce, B. C. Randolf, and T. G. Taft

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