First things first, time to roll up our character. I wasn't expecting to have as good scores as last time, but we ended up with:
Which isn't too bad. To it we can add either a Potion of Skill, a Potion of Strength, or a Potion of Fortune, all of which restore points of skill, stamina or luck, respectively. I hope I'm not out of line in immediately assuming the Potion of Strength is the only one of any worth. We also have 10 gold pieces, 4 black cubes, and a gem box, the meaning of which will become clear shortly...
The introduction to Fangs of Fury is obscenely long and pretty daft, but it essentially boils down to this: We live in a kingdom called Zamarra. It is under attack from the ominously named Ostragoth the Grim and his sidekick Jaxartes, who has laid seige to its citadel. This is despite the fact that Zamarra is protected by six giant stone sentinels, who are supposed to breath fire on anything evil which enters the land; the sentinels did not work when Ostragoth's army invaded, because their "living flame" has apparently been extinguished.
This is where we come in: as an ordinary soldier we have been chosen by our Captain, Laski, and the king's chief wizard Astragal to take a special torch, crafted by the Twelve Good Wizards of Zamarra, and thrust it into the base of a great volcano found in the middle of five mountains called the Fangs of Fury. This will re-ignite the flame of the sentinels and allow them to send Ostragoth's horde packing. Sounds simple enough, no?
To protect us from the heat of the volcano we have four black cubes, each of which will absorb one wave of heat before disintegrating. We have also been given a Running Man-esque bracelet which will glow each time Ostragoth's army breaks through a defence line. It will also explode and kill us if Ostragoth succeeds, to prevent us from just legging it, which seems overly suspicious - haven't they heard you never get the choice to just run away in a Fighting Fantasy book?
Without further ado, let's get on with it:
You are taken to the deepest part of the Citadel. Captain Laski and two soldiers march in front of you and the twelve Wizards shuffle along behind you. Astragal looks at you, shakes your hand warmly and wishes you good luck. He then stands back with the others.
Captain Laski orders the soldiers to lift one of the slabs in the chamber. They prise it up to reveal a set of stone steps leading into a tunnel. The Captain then gives you some advice: 'Keep to the left-hand wall. Don't light a torch, you might be seen. And. . . well . . good luck.' You are amazed to hear a good word from your hard-bitten Captain. You check your pack, equipment and the all important Torch hidden in the secret panel of your leather
armour, and step down into the dark hole.
Just then, the ground shakes as another boulder slams into the Citadel walls. You look up. Captain Laski pokes his head into the hole and screams at you, 'And make sure you succeed. I won't have you besmlrching the honour of the Seventh Foot sloggers.' His head disappears and the slab is dropped backdown. You are in complete darkness.
You feel your way along the left side of the wall for about 4oo paces and then you fall over a pile of rubble. You get up to find the tunnel ahead is blocked. You listen carefully and can hear shouting and screaming. You also smell faint whiffs of fresh air. You feel around in the dark and find another smaller tunnel to the right. Your first instinct is to go back but you realize that from here on there is no going back. What do you decide? Do you take the
tunnel to the right (turn to 250) or do you climb the pile of rubble (turn to 118)?