THE TESTIMONIAL OF P.T. LYFANTOD

FOUR

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A RING           “Hire me?” said Lyfantod suspiciously, his mind still slow and muddled with drink.  He relaxed the grip of his trigger finger ever so slightly, but kept the gun pointed firmly at the fiend hanging upside-down in his hallway.  “For what?”           “Something has been taken from me, Mr. Lyfantod.  Something which I value dearly.  And it is in everyone’s best interests that I get it back.  The sooner the better, as recent events should have made abundantly clear.”           “And I suppose that sending your...

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THREE

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AN UNWELCOME CALLER             The entrance to the Guild Hall was, as such things often were, hidden in plain sight.  A few blocks from the top of Victoria Street, there was a narrow alleyway lined with cobblestones which passed between two tall, grey buildings.  Turn down it, and after a few twists and turns, you'd find yourself at the mouth of a tunnel of sorts—a moist, shadowy, dripping place where one building hung over the street to rest against another.  The tunnel wasn't long; twenty meters at most.  But it was dark, without a single source of light...

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TWO

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THE ORACLE             Lyfantod woke in his chair, stiff, bleary eyed and crick-necked, and stumbled into and out of a scalding shower somewhat refreshed.  The water-heater and the lights were almost the only exceptions he made to a certain firm rule he followed about electricity--contrary to the dictations of better judgment, which said that it was completely unnecessary.  Lyfantod was, for a variety of reasons, under the impression that his presence might cause appliances to short-circuit or spontaneously burst into flames, and so, despite the obvious irony, he fixed his breakfast on an old gas range which he lit...

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ONE

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  THE BARD WHO COULD NOT SING   Dum Dum Da da dum... Da Dum dum...              Sheets of white tumbled down between wet stone walls, and milky blankets muffled oily black boots on a less traveled street as P.T. Lyfantod held his coat tight around him and hummed a ward against the cold.  He was a Welshman, and ill suited to Scottish winter.  The cold made his back tight, and the tips of his fingers burn, and as he walked back to his apartment and office his mind drifted to the warm amber bottle in...

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