Episode 008 – Matt Chose The Blue Pill

The Battle of Boismère Forest

It has been hundreds of years since anyone has seen a dragon. The last known sighting was when Kirmizi-Ejderha-Ates, the great red dragon, came from the east. Chromatic dragons typically leave one another alone, respecting each others territory, in an effort to honor their queen, Tiamat. But, for some unknown reason, K-E-A attacked the green dragon Siyah-Ejderha-Zehir in its home, the Boismère forest. It is said that K-E-A boiled the waters of Silver Lake, which was believed to be the entrance to the lair of S-E-Z, in order to force the dragon out. The battle was fierce and went on for days.

The elves of Boismère forest did everything that they could to protect their home. Unfortunately, the rain of fire and chlorine gas was too much and they had to leave. Most fled to the human village, Boiston, on the edge of the forest, while others traveled the world. The battle left the forest in ashes and covered in a haze of poison. Nothing could live there for a century. As for the dragons, some claim they saw K-E-A fly east after the battle. Though, no one knows for sure what happen to the green dragon.

In the centuries since the battle, the forest has regrown. The elves have been able to return and establish a new home. Silver Lake, which was once full of all manner of fish and underwater plant life remains barren. This has made its waters clear and still. Despite being over 100 feet deep, you can see all the way to the bottom of the lake. The shore has been increasingly hard to get to over the last few years as a large thicket has begone to grow around its edges.

There is an area of the forest that has taken on some special properties. It is refereed to as Mortem Vitam Grove. This is believed to be the center of the arena that the dragons battled in. Here the blood of these ancient beings was spilled most heavily and as a result the soil has special properties. There is a moss that grows here called stabiliendum that is a base element in the brewing of all healing potions. There are few living who are able to harvest the moss without destroying it. The elven potion master, Dursilia Amakiir, and her daughter Potia are the only ones in the region with the ability. They have a potion shop along the main path into the woods, half a days travel from Boiston.

Recently, a pack of gnolls has been spotted around Mortem Vitam Grove. Stabiliendum has a foul taste to most but these vile creatures love its flavor and have been devouring it every time they come across it. Dursilia and Potias stores have been depleted and something needs to be done about the gnoll infestation so that they can collect more of this precious moss and prevent it from going extinct.

Episode 007 – Justice League: It was like getting the band back together when no one wants to listen to your music

Beef and Broccoli

Beef and broccoli just as good as at your local Chinese place. This recipe is based on a recipe I found at dinneratthezoo.com. I simplified it and adapted it to my families tastes.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds of flank steak sliced thin. (If your grocery store has presliced stir-fry meat that will work as well.)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 broccoli crowns cut into bite sized pieces
  • 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
  • 1/2 cup beef broth
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 2 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 tsp cornstarch

Directions

  1. Season steak with salt, pepper and ginger. Brown meat in large skillet. 2-3 minutes on each side depending on thickness of meat. Add garlic after first flip. 
  2. Steam Broccoli
  3. In a small bowl mix hoisin sauce, beef broth, sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce and cornstarch.
  4. Add mix to meat and heat on low until sauce starts to thicken.
  5. Mix in steamed broccoli.
  6. Serve with rice.

Fortune Cookie Says – You will soon eat your beef and broccoli better than everyone else –  Lucky numbers: 64 because 64 is the only lucky number you need.

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Episode 006 – What is The Deal With All These Rich Actors?

Episode 005 – Please Don’t Breathe or Cry On Me in the Theater

Episode 004 – Breaking the Tacos Because Hackers

Dill Pretzel Dip

Pretzels are boring. Heres something thats not boring to dip them in!

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup Mayo
  • 1/4 cup Sour Cream
  • 1 tsp Dill Weed
  • 1/2 tsp Onion Powder
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder

Directions

  1. Mix all the ingredients.
  2. Dip pretzels in dip and enjoy!
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Retaking Mine Town

Upon returning to Mine Town we were greeted by an unfamiliar sound. It was the hustle and bustle of the streets. This town, which had always been quite and empty, was now full of activity. Old buildings being repaired. New buildings being built. The market has reopened and our favorite pub, Sandies Place, was so full we had trouble getting a seat. Though, as long as Grim is with us, we always have a table waiting for us at Sandies.

A lot has changed in Mine Town. We learned that the mine has reopened and Stonebeard spends from sun up to sun down mapping out new veins of gold and iron. There is a new constable in town. A man called Anvar Gerkens. With the increased activity our good friends Timothy and Tomothy were no longer up to the task. This is probably for the best. Gerkens seems to be well liked by the towns people. All in all, things seem to be going well here.

Things are going well with one exception that is. The symbol of Odin has been removed from the temple and Father Shamus has been expelled. Balok has left one of his generals behind to watch over the town. Necro is acting as the high priestess in what is now the temple of Balok. Returning this temple to the followers of Odin would become our first priority.

We decided to free Rickie Vallish of his petrification. If nothing else, we have a common enemy in Balok. He explained that he thought he could use the god slayer to defeat Balok and become a god himself. This kind of arrogance will undoubtedly be the undoing of mankind. Rickie agreed to help us in our quest to defeat Balok. We spent the evening at Sandies talking to the locals and gathering as much information on Necro as we could. While there, Grim received an open invitation to speak with Necro. It would seem Balok has not forgotten the hold he had on our wizard friend not so long ago.

In the morning we visited the the temple. Our plan was to recover the pendant that we believed Balok was using to control Necro. At this point, I would remove any lingering control he had over her. The hope was that, once freed, she would rejoin Rickie and then aid us in defeating her old master. Unfortunately, things didnt go as planned. She handed the pendant over willingly but was unfazed by my abjuration. This left Grim in a state of rage that we had never seen from him. He attacked Necro with all his might, unwilling to let anyone who pledged allegiance to Balok remain standing. The rest of us joined in and we quickly dispatched the corrupted aasimar.

With our foe now ashes, it was time to set things right. The sigil of Odin would be returned and Father Shamus would be reinstated. In the event that he can not be found, the Church of Zeus will appoint a new priest and acolytes to preside over Mine Town. We hired the workers to continue repairing the building, but now doing it in the name of Zeus.

One last task needed to be accomplished before we continued on our quest. The people needed to be convinced that Balok was not their new savior, but rather a threat to their well being. Rickie, while almost completely useless in the taking back of the church, was in his prime during this task. There is nothing like a bard to rally a town to a cause. I have no doubt that we have the full support of the people of Mine Town.

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New Music Fridays – Thom Yorke

About a week ago, it was announced that Thom Yorke would be dropping a new album called Anima on June 27th. Yes, I know that was Thursday, so shut up. It was also announced that an accompanying Netflix short film directed by Paul Thomas Anderson would be released the same day.

The album is synth-heavy and loads of fun. The hypnotic track Not the News sounds like there is a little alarm going on with heavily reverberating vocals. Then there is the more mellow Dawn Chorus, which omits the beat in favor of a percussive overdriven synth line underneath Yorke’s lulling vocals. From start to finish, there is never a dull moment.

The Netflix short clocks in around 15 minutes and plays like a subtle commentary on the pitfalls of modern society. It feels like a 15-minute music video with multiple tracks from the album woven together as the undercurrent for the choreographed visuals. While the whole thing is weird as hell, I like that it exists as a companion piece to the album in an alternative medium.

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