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The Killer Cook

"…And I handed that dumb Golem my ore and it just stood there, smoking like an Arwic hippie high on hyssop." I draw another drink from the oaken stoup.

Jiggles McMankleman leans in closer, intently listening to this tale. He always has loved the stories of my adventures. "So what did you do?"

"Well at first I waited. I sat there on top of that tower and just waited. I must've dozed off because next thing I remember is it was morning and some shrilly boy's voice getting all excited over receiving his weapon. I thought that Golem was finally handing out daggers but it still had nothing for me." I spit in ire on the frying pan in front of me, the saliva dancing on the surface in little droplets until the heat evaporates it.

"Hmmm. Did you ask nicely for your dagger?"

"Nicely? Hah! I turned to the Golem's master, some bitch named Silencia, and said, 'Hey drudge whore, your pet rock there stole my chorizite. I demand a hollow dagger!' She just stared at me blankly like that oak drudge I sleep with." I empty the stoup of its stout and pour another cupful from the wooden firkin. "So with both fists I punched that molten Golem."

"And that's how you burned your hands then…" Jiggles points to my bandaged hands. I didn't want to tell him that I burned them trying to scoop a fallen steak from the fire.

"Yup. Then after I punched it, I pulled out my knife and ran it through with one swift pierce to the belly." I smile smugly while scratching my unshaven chin. "It just collapsed into a pile of lava rocks. Then I look back at that glyph slut Silencia and say, 'Now you give me a hollow dagger or you'll get a bit of what Pebbles there got.' Again no reaction from her." I finish off my cup of stout and release the built up air in my stomach.

Jiggles waves his little hand in front of his face, trying to fan away the stench that belch produced. "That's odd, lately many people have passed through town carrying hollow weapons. I think that a firkin of ale at six o'clock in the morning is the one telling this story. What do you say we check out that white rat lair just outside town."

"How about me going over to the side of the blacksmith and emptying my bladder while you go get another keg of beer. Then I'll tell you the story on how I bedded some trollop named Kattienne at the Beach Fort too. She couldn't keep her hands off me."

I stumble over to the small alley between the bowyer and the blacksmith and drop my pants. A shiver travels up my back as I splash the brick wall with urine, causing the stream to moisten my leg and shoe. Just as I push out the last of the liquid, the smithy rounds the corner, waving a short sword.

"Damn it Swallow! I told you to piss somewhere else. This time I'm going to cut that poor excuse for a penis off." The enraged blacksmith charges me, holding the blade over his head. Giggling, I hop into the street to avoid the crazed smith while attempting to pull my trousers up. I lose balance and trip in the middle of the street, bare ass displayed for everyone.

That's when I saw it. Amongst all the laughter and pointing from the gathering crowd, I see a group of thugs harassing my beloved vassal Jiggles McMankleman. They had the little midget surrounded, pushing him around and taking my ale. My blood begins to boil. No one takes my ale! I pull myself up, step out of my pants and march over there half-naked. The band harassing Jiggles stops and breaks into laughter at my approaching sight. That's when I notice they are player killers.

"Do what you want with the freak, but leave my beer alone." My eyes continue to stare at the firkin, ignoring the screams from Jiggles.

"You want the ale, eh?" The player killer draws a war hammer and smashes the oaken barrel with one blow. Beer soaks the street filling the air with the sweet smells of rich hops and caramelized barley. "Then get on your hands and knees and drink it!"

Not a bad idea, I'd hate to waste so much ale. I drop to my knees and bury my face into the largest puddle, lapping up the beer. The player killer plants his boot into my bare ass and pushes me over into the pools of ale. The two warriors shove Jiggles McMankleman into the soaked street next to me and walk away, laughing boisterously.
I pull myself to my feet and suck some of the ale that has drenched my shirt. "No one deprives me of alcohol and gets away with it!"

"Can I suggest that you put some pants on Sir?" Jiggles stands up, wiping the beer-made mud from his clothes. "You know what beer does to uhh…" He gestures to my genitalia "You know."

"Bah!" I find my pants and walk up to the pub. "I need a drink before I leave."


"I'm going to Baishi and become a player killer. Then I shall get my revenge!"

The next morning I wake just before noon. Jiggles already is up, and packing me a traveling bag. "Did you remember to pack my frying pan?"

"Yes, everything's here." He hands me a gray sack. "Good luck Sir."

"The only person needing luck is Bael'Zharon. I shall be his biggest fear after today." With that, I walk down the road, bag slung over my shoulder, and Jiggles waving his good-byes, teary eyed.

I hop into the portals leading to Rithwic, then Shoushi. I land outside the Sho town, covered in a thick green puke. I knew I overdid the ales last night. I'll have to walk the rest of the way to Baishi from here. I wander into Shoushi to look for my guide to Baishi. The Shoushi pub is quiet. Unlike the Aluvian pubs I am used to, the Sho don't frequent them as often.

"Stout." I yell to the barkeep, "And keep it coming."

"I'm sorry but we don't serve stout here." The pub owner bows to me.

"No stout? What the hell do you serve here then?"

"Green tea." He bows again, deeper this time.

"If you bend over one more time, I'm going to ram my fist up your ass!"

"I'm sorry sir." He starts to bow but stops at half-bend.

"Well I need something to hold me off until I get to Baishi."

"You going to Baishi?" A seedy looking fellow at the end of the bar looks up from his cup of steaming tea.

"Yeah, you tea drinking wussy. I need to reach the Alter of Bael'Zharon before nightfall. Who the hell are you?"
"They call me Xenon of the Wind. I am a player killer and can guide you to His altar."

"I need a guide but after we reach the altar, you better watch your back." I pull out my practice knife and attempt to stick it into the wooden pub counter, bending its tip. "You just might get a taste of this."

"Uh, yeah ok. Let's move out, the road to Baishi becomes dangerous at night."

After Xenon infuses me with various protection spells and attribute buffs, we venture down the road leading to Baishi. The paved path meanders over rolling hills, across open plains and through tight valleys. As we jog along the road, I think of the two Pkers in town and the destruction of my ale firkin. Revenge will be sweet. Xenon easily dispatches each group of foes along the roadside as we continue our journey. Eventually we reach the town.

"First we hit the pub for sake." Xenon leads me across town to a well-kept tavern.

"That's more like it. I'm as dry as an 80-year old hooker in Arwic right now."

The tavern, like any other Sho pub, was deserted. I examine the drink menu and toss it in disgust. This sake stuff better be good. Xenon hands the pub owner some pyreal and the Sho hands back a small earthen cup.

"Hold this." He hands me the ceramic cup. The liquid inside is clear and warm. It smells strongly of alcohol, causing my saliva glands to kick into overtime. Quickly I slurp down the drink, the liquid burning all the way down.

"You're not supposed to drink the sake. It's a bribe to the drunken madman outside town to open us a portal to the Walled Portals. This will lead us to the Accursed Halls and eventually His altar." Xenon fishes out a few more pyreal and purchases another cup. Oddly he doesn't hand me this one.

We exit the tavern then head out of town. After Xenon of the Wind slays a group of Hunter Shreth the madman's tower appears before us. I walk up to the madman just to see how mad he really is.

"I have occupied this tower for years, the rats that infest it have become both my friends and my lovers." The madman lets out a shrilling laugh.

"I once ate 847 prunes, stood on my head and defecated just to see how it felt." I sit across from the crazed man, knowing he is no match for my own madness.

"For years I have collected the lint from between my toes. My clothes are sewn from its fibers." The crazy bastard leans in close, bearing his rotting and crooked teeth.

"Last year I said nothing but 'milky nipples' for 3 weeks straight." I lean in to him, bearing my more rotten and even more crooked teeth.

"Sometimes when a novice group comes here for a portal, I disrobe, bend over and force them to shove the cups of sake into my ass before I open the portal." A droplet of sweat forms on his upper brow and trickles into his eye. Yes, I have him now.

"I dream every night of cutting off all my fingers and toes, then sticking blocks of cheese on the stumps." I see him flinch with that one. Victory will soon be mine.

"I run around the tower acting like a chicken, making clucking noises and pecking at the ground." His eyes seem unsure about that comment. It almost appears he is making them up now.

"I've been known to strip naked and cover my body with fat banana slugs for sexual pleasure." Yes, his lips tremble now. He will soon collapse from my obvious craziness.

"Uh, don't you think we're done here. I'd like to get to the portal sometime this week." Xenon hands the drunken madman a glass of sake and steps back.

The drunken madman stands up and without taking his eyes off of me, opens a portal before us. "Make sure you come back here when you're done, I'm not done telling you how mad I really am."

"You are no match for my craziness. I'll be back to crush you with my madness." I jump through the portal after Xenon of the Wind.

The portal spits me out in a walled off fortress and I quickly roll to one side. The expelled contents of my stomach spray Xenon of the Wind. I lay there laughing uncontrollably while Xenon yells and wipes the bile from his face and hair.

He eventually calms down and turns to me, "We'll be to His altar soon." An evil smile forms on his face, sending an odd chill in my spine. He leads me into another portal and on into the Accursed Halls. After slaying various Banderlings, Shreth, and Tuskers we arrive in a dark and sinister room. Along one wall in this room resides an altar that represents all evil. "Offer your petty soul to our master, Bael'Zharon! Kneel before him, wretched man, kneel and feel His power."

I drop to one knee, reach out and touch the altar. Its marble surface is cold, giving me chills. I feel the power of Bael'Zharon slowly taking over my body. "Now, Xenon. It's time to see what you're really made of."
I begin to stand up from my kneeling position while fumbling for my practice knife. I feel a crushing blow to the back of my head, knocking me back to the ground. I awaken moments later at the lifestone just outside Holtburg, my frying pan missing from my pack.

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