Well. Okay. This isn’t going great. Uh. Hmm. Let’s just chalk it up to being unlucky? Ah. Everything feels… bad.
Once again I fall down below, returning to the dungeon and coming into a new body and life. I open my eyes and look around. Ah! A skeleton today. Nice! Okay. Uh. Looking around I see that I’m the labyrinth for like the millionth time. Well, whatever. Okay! Let’s get going I think to myself, dragging my rusted mace along behind me.
Something clicks beneath my foot and I look down at the stone I stepped down on. At the single brick in the floor that gives way beneath my weight. Uh oh.
The blade shoots out of the wall in an instant and all I hear is a loud crunch and a series of rattles as my body falls apart and my bones scatter to the floor in all directions, propelled by the sprung trap.
Uh…? Okay. This is sub-optimal. Sub-optimal for sure. There’s some bad mojo going on right now I suppose? Ah. Hmm. Okay. Well, everyone is unlucky. Sometimes really unlucky. Very, very, very really unlucky. I’m sure that’s it. That’s all there is to it, right? Haha, yeah. Yeah for sure.
I fall down again and open my eyes.
I don’t even know what got me that time. Once again I shoot up into the ethereal cosmos, into the dimensional waiting room that is limbo. Okay. Uh, so. I think something is wrong? I’m starting to maybe speculate, just possibly, that something is wrong. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to sound paranoid or crazy or make you worried or anything but… you know? Something’s wrong. Probably.
Again I sink down back into the world that apparently doesn’t want me anymore. I’m starting to get dizz-
Looking around I examine my environment carefully, slowly, warily. Waiting the sound of something rushing my way. Waiting for the inevitable click of some trap to spring into action. There is nothing. Nothing but me and silence. The silence of a thousand goblins around me talking and laughing noisily as they are running around the streets. So… not that silent honestly. But… I’m alive?
About ten seconds now. New record for sure.
Looking around I realize I am just outside of the goblin-king’s palace, standing on the bridge. Apparently I’m a mook today. Just some one hit wonder. That’s okay. I can live with that. At least I have a chance to brea-
A lurch rushes through me as the ground gives way beneath my feet. Shrill screams fill the air in that second as I notice my vision tilting, as I feel my gut lurch up into my chest. As the ropes of the bridge snap and give way, ripping the construction in half from the weight of those standing it and sending us spiraling down into the depths.
Once more I return to the place above. Some shapeless form being tossed around back and forth between the states of existence and non-existence; neither wanting me anymore apparently. Rude. But yeah, uh, something’s up. I think we can say that’s confirmed now. Did I do something wrong? Am I being punished? Dark-lord, did I upset you? Why? I do it all for you!
Again I respawn.
A moment later I die before I have the chance to see anything, to do anything.
What did I do? I’ve been doing my best! So why are you mad at me? I’ve just been living life like I always have you know? Being a productive member of the communit-
Ah. Come on. That’s really starting t-
Nothing happens. Huh? I wait, wait for the inevitable lurch. For the wrenching hand to cast me into a new life, just to have it ripped away from me a moment later, stolen away from me a moment later. What did I do wrong? I think. There’s only one difference, only one change I’ve made to my life. The thief-girl. I fought against her, well, no. I tricked her, set a trap like I had been planning to do for so long. Is that why?
I don’t understand.
Aren’t we enemies? Isn’t it my job to fight her? To kill her? After all she’s been fighting me, killing me. Hell, we’ve fought before? How was that any different? Because I let her go? Because I saved her? Because we fought head on in an actual fight and I didn’t trick her?
I float and wait for something to happen, for the universe to give me a response to any of the questions I’ve asked. I don’t understand why I’m here. I don’t understand the rules of this existence I have been… given, for a lack of nicer words. I’m just trying to get out. I want to leave the dungeon. I want to get off the ride. I want it to stop. I just want to live a nice life above here. I want to eat nice foods and have real drinks that aren’t made of rats or potion ingredients. I want to see the sun, the real sun. I want to have friends. I want to be somebody and to stay as them. I want this to be over. I want to di-
OKAY! Okay. Okay. Damn it. So you don’t want me to fight the thief-girl? I wait. Nothing happens. Okay, then… what about the hero-party? I wait. Nothing happens. Other trash-mobs? Nothing happens. Do you want me to stop looking for the way out? Nothing happens. Why me? Nothing happens. Who am I? Who are you? Are you the dark-lord? Are you some light god punishing me for existing? Is this hell? Or is this just what life really is? Just an endless carnival of dragon shit?
Nothing happens and I float.
Did I do something wrong? Was it the trap? Did I-
I respawn and look around at the green-water flowing around me. Trickling sewage fills the corroded pipe I stand inside. Looking around I fearfully await the vengeance of whatever part of the cosmos I have angered. For the inevitable strike to rip me from this mortal coil once again. Cautiously I step forward, but nothing happens. No sounds. No traps. No death. Not even a splash.
Not even a splash?
I look down to my hands. I don’t have any. I look down to my body. I don’t have one. I am nothing. Just some vague floating entity, some shapeless gestalt. Is this a ghost?
Do we have ghosts in our dungeon? Neat, I guess?
Looking around I see rats run past me, an entire horde of them racing all in one direction. Towards the chamber of the rat-queen I suppose. Hmm.
Turning around I look down the pipe, down the way the rats are running from and then I see it. See the first glimmer of the man in the golden armor dredge through the filth. I see four silhouettes ambling on behind him, walking directly towards me with no inhibitions, no worries or fear. I freeze, unsure of what to do.
They are upon me and I expect to be cut in half. But no eyes reach me. No swords. Not even the thief-girl’s frightening glare. Nothing.
The entire hero-party walks right past me. As they do so, the priestess walks through me and stops to sneeze once, a chill running up her spine.
“Bless you,” says the monk.
“Thanks,” she waves it off with an awkward smile.