Game Text Adventure 2000: Reloaded

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Which adventure would you like to embark on?

  • Clown Spies: Last Line of Defense

    Votes: 1 100.0%
  • Paintin' Fish with Jim

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Truckin' '79

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • DJ Street Warrior: The Quest for Freshest Beat

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • UngulateSim Goat Farm

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    1
  • Poll closed .

Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#1
Three years ago, on a whim, I whipped up a mock-computer game called Text Adventure 2000. It was designed to resemble the text-based adventures of the 1980s. Play alternated between readers putting in actions and a "computer" (usually me, but occasionally others) processing the outcome of player decisions. Jacob has kept the tradition alive through a succession of other Text Adventure games, but I recently revisited the original thread with @Rock-Scar and realized what a good writing tool it had been for me. I want to go back.

So I'm reloading the original Text Adventure 2000 with a slate of five fresh game options. In the past, when a game ended, the first person to weigh in got to pick the next one, but now I'm making it democratic. For the next 24 hours you'll have the chance to choose between the dangerous life of a spy-clown or the genteel existence of a man who paints fish, the rigorous grind of truckin' in the late 1970s or the noble quest for the freshest of all possible beats. Also there's an educational game for kids where you take care of goats.

In another break from the past, I'll be your constant computer this time around. As players, all you have to do is... survive.
[doublepost=1472521046,1472429849][/doublepost]You have selected "Clown Spies: Last Line of Defense."

Loading

Ready

Run

Clown Spies: Last Line of Defense
(C) 1981, 1982 Espionage Honk Honk Entertainment

You wake up on the ground in an alleyway in Moscow, your red nose mashed into the hard communist gravel. You roll onto your back and look out onto the street. Passers-by, clad in layers of gray fur and grayer wool, ignore you. They see clowns lying face-down in alleys all the time.

You feel a sharp pain in your side and, reaching over, find that you've been shot with a tranquilizer dart. It went through both layers of polka-dot body armor and your rubber prosthetic stomach, which you wear in case you ever need to ever take off your shirt for a joke and don't want the kids in the audience to see the scar from where that hand grenade almost ripped your guts out back in '68. Pulling the dart out, you see that it has a tiny flag on the end of it, which reads "бах!" This is the mark of a professional.

You groggily rise to your feet and assess yourself. Aside from some dirt, your apparel - oversized everything, in bright colors - is in good shape. You currently have:

-Rubber nose made of plastic explosive
-Greasepaint makeup kit, which is actually a forensics kit
-A phone hidden in one of your giant clown shoes
-A container of Silly String that will actually spray out garrotte wire
-Sneezing powder
-A wristwatch which is actually a regular alarm clock on a wristband, except the clock is also a bomb
-A 120-pack of communist balloon animal balloons, which comes with a list of Party-approved animals you can make with them
-A telescope which puts a black ring around your eye and is also a microfilm camera
-A bicycle pump which is actually a really badly designed gun

Glancing at your wristwatch-clock-bomb, you see that it's 9:45 in the morning. If you hurry, you can still make it to your scheduled taping of Proletariat Kids' Fun Time Extravaganza and complete your mission goal of assassinating Ivan Bozonov, the most famous and feared clown in the USSR. Or perhaps you should try to figure out who left you here in this alleyway. Or maybe you should just try to blend in for awhile, get the lay of the land.

What do you do?
 
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Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#3
You grab onto the lid of a nearby trashcan to pull yourself upright. Your vision is still blurry but you can feel strength returning to your limbs, finely honed muscle memory tuning in to the skills of mano de risa, the deadliest of the clown martial arts. At this point the lid pops off the can and you inadvertantly smack yourself in the face with it, making a sound like a symbol crash. A group of passers-by stop and stare at you, and you realize it's now or never.

You pop yourself into a cartwheel and roll down the alleyway, making a pap-crash-twap-twap-pap-crash-twap-twap sound as your hand, the trashcan lid you're still clutching, and your clown shoes hit the ground in rapid succession. As you reach the sidewalk, you stick the landing and begin spinning the trash can lid around on a fingertip, all in one fluid motion. The assembled - you can see it's a couple with a child - spontaneously break into applause.

"Wow!" says the father. "Performance was very, how you say, phantasmagorical. Was like I was small child again, and watching majestic windmill in field of wheat."

"Thank you, comrade," you say. With a careful flick of your wrist, you snap the lid off your fingertip and onto the child's head, where it continues spinning. "Have you seen any suspicious people in this area recently?"

"Nyet," say the mother and child, in unison.

"Well," says the father, gently stroking his leonine beard, "Man came running out of here moment or two before now. Much haste."
 
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Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#5
You glance at the back of the pack and decide that what this kid really needs is a squirrel. While inflating the balloon, you ask about the man.

"Did you see which way he went?" you ask, being careful not to accidentally shoot anyone with the pump/gun.

"Nyet," say the mother and child, in unison.

"Well," says the father, "man either went THAT way, or THAT way. Was definitely one of two."

The first direction the man has pointed is NORTH, towards a hulking gray building you recognize from your debriefing as the ROSPLOSION Heavy Munition and Wolf Rehabilitation Plant. Its inner secrets are closely guarded, but rumors say that this is where the Soviets build their biggest weapons and reform the nastiest wolves.

The second direction the man has pointed is WEST, towards the Red Star Red Light District. You can see a number of stocky prostitutes standing around near open doorways, out of which pour loud music about how great corn is.

The television center, unfortunately, is in the EAST. You are scheduled to arrive for broadcast at noon sharp. And SOUTH takes you back down the alley where you started.

You finish your balloon squirrel and hand it to the child. His eyes light up in wonderment.

"Here," you say kindly. "Is squirrel. Much hard worker. Envy of whole forest."

Which way will you go?
 
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Rock-Scar

The Sentient Sediment
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*wilhelm scream*
#6
There's no way Bozonov can resist the siren's call of stocky street walkers and a catchy corn chorus. Call the TV center on the clown shoe phone to try to stall for time while hopping west on one foot. The punchline of clown vengeance must be delivered.
 
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Captain Video

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#7
You know your opponent better than he knows himself. Ivan Bozonov is an even better lady killer than he is wolf disciplinarian. If he's involved on this attempt on your life - which seems likely - then there's no way he would miss the chance to sex up such fine proletarians along the way.

"Good morning, ladies," you say, confidently duck-footing your way over. "I am people's hero showbiz clown, and I am desiring the sex."

One of them drops her cigarette butt on the ground and grinds it out under the heel of her engineer boot. "Svetlana. I am good at sex," she says.

She takes you by your gloved hand and leads you through one of the doorways, which goes into a strip club. On the stage in the back is a fully dressed woman who, judging by the vast heap of furs behind her, is now about halfway done with a strip tease; she is lit by red floodlights and the occasional bright flash of a man welding a car body up on blocks a few feet away. Over the bar is a TV set with all knobs pulled off it, which is tuned in to some sort of news program. This is being sullenly watched by a pair of men playing chess with bullets. You take all this in quickly as Svetlana drags you past a couple scurrying chickens and up an unlit staircase in the back.

You excuse yourself at the top and duck into a convenient bathroom, which contains a basin sink, one of those antique toilets with a wooden box high up the wall, and a framed photograph of Yuri Andropov, which someone has nailed up in such a way that it almost-but-doesn't-quite conceal a framed photograph of Leonid Brezhnev. Peeking behind that, you find a portrait of Khrushchev, which is nailed up over a portrait of Stalin, which is nailed up over a portrait of Lenin.

Satisfied that there is no hidden surveillance, you take off your shoes. In one shoe is a combination telephone-fax machine, which is equipped with TouchTone dialing and its own answering machine. It was built by Bell Laboratories at a cost of $2.3 million, and represents the most powerful piece of telephony in the world. In the other shoe is the lead-acid battery that powers it, good for almost ten minutes of talk time. You tie the laces together, powering the phone up, and dial the number for the TV station.

"Huh-huh-heeeey," you say, in your most jocular voice. "Can I speak to the Commissar of Programming?"

"Is everything alright in bathroom?" asks Svetlana.

You cover the mouthpiece with your hand. "JUST A MINUTE BABE I'M WORKING ON MY SEX VOICE."

"Who is this?" says an icy voice from the sole of your shoe. You recognize the cadence of Andrei Hachachev, Commissar of Programming and the most dangerous man in children's entertainment. You briefly wonder if the stories about him having the original Big Bird assassinated are true.

"Noodles Ivanovich," you say, giving the alias the boys at the Agency crafted for you. "I make children laugh. Or else."

"Ah," says Hachachev. "I see your dossier. Am very much looking forward to you on today's show, promptly at noon sharp."

"Da," you say, "about that. I am needing more time to, uh, perfect my craft."

"Is that so," says Hachachev, and you take a comically oversized gulp as you imagine Big Bird's head being lined up in the crosshairs.

"I think your sex voice already very sexful!" yells Svetlana from the other side of the door. "We start anytime!"

You hear Hachachev chuckling from the shoe. "We can maybe put on dancing yak before you, instead of after," he says, "You can have extra half of hour for 'craft.' But no more!" There's a click as the line goes dead.

You quickly untie the shoes, put them back on your feet, and open the door. Standing before you is Svetlana, who has changed out of her street furs into a pink boilersuit with a hole cut out of it over her cleavage. She gestures to the doors lining the hallway behind her.

-JUNGLE ROOM
-AMERICAN ROOM
-ANTARCTIC RESEARCH BASE
-GLORIOUS PEOPLE'S REVOLUTION ROOM
-SEX ROOM OF THE FUTURE

"Where you want to sex?"
 
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Captain Video

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#9
There's still no sign of your assailant. You need to get deeper into this place.

"I will take sex room of future," you assert.

"Excellent choice, comrade," says Svetlana, and again takes you by the hand. She leads you into a room full of exposed ductwork and instrument panels full of blinking lights; it's like a carnival ride about being a boiler technician. The walls are all murals of fantastic Soviet science achievements, like Yuri Gargarin in space and the guy who figured out you can turn potatoes into alcohol. The centerpiece is a circular bed that is covered in giraffe-print fabric and rotating gently.

"Bed not stop rotating," says Svetlana apologetically. "Repairman comes Tuesday."

The bed motor is making a steady rrr-rrr-rrr, but behind that you think you hear something else. As Svetlana throws herself onto the moving bed, making it on her second try, you walk slowly over to an especially large duct. There is something moving in here.

"What you waiting for?" says Svetlana, her words slurred slightly by the beet she's holding seductively in her teeth. "I have shift as wolf puncher in half hour, we should get sexing."

"I thought I hear some-" you start to say, and then there's the terrible crash of failing sheet metal and a heavy figure drops out of the duct and knocks you to the floor. What do you do?
 

jacobc62

The NASCAR Fan
Jun 20, 2013
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Panthera tigris Nascuris (Bengal NASCAR Tiger)
#10
I sigh and state my infamous catch phrase: "I hate Mondays"

I then throw the heavy figure off of me and get back on my feet.
 
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Captain Video

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#11
"I hate Mondays," you say. Due to the general embargo on American popular culture in the USSR, it was the belief of the Agency that you could pass off common Americanisms as original humor here. This seems to be borne out as the most tired joke from Garfield elicits a slow chuckle from your opponent.

"Ahaha, yes, is true," the man says. "I also hate Mondays."

"If you liked that," you say, in what Svetlana unfortunately believes is your sex voice, "you'll really like this."

You then deliver a forceful elbow upwards and roll out from under your stunned attacker. Hopping up, you see Svetlana spitting out her beet and stumbling off the bed to help you. Your attacker coughs and uses a plaster statue of a naked woman wearing nothing but a space helmet to pull himself upright. Purple tailcoat, purple pants, black turtleneck sweater - this can only be The Magician. An underling of Bozonov, The Magician is a force in his own right. He can hypnotize people so hard they can hypnotize other people, and a flock of his doves can skeletonize a cow in ten seconds.

You have only seconds to deliver a finishing counterattack. Your clown weapons have a high chance of success, but will out you as a spy to Svetlana. Fighting with your fists or an improvised weapon from the room has a lower chance of success, but won't blow your cover. What do you do?
 
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Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#13
You grab a table lamp shaped like the Soviet N1 rocket and, shouting "I AM THE NEW SOVIET MAN!", smash it over The Magician's head. In an odd coincidence, the lamp disintegrates in exactly the same way the real N1 rocket did every time the Soviets tried to launch it. The Magician falls limply to the floor, and Svetlana applauds.

"Excellent fight!" she says. "I not even having to break out wolf-punching skills."

Suddenly, The Magician's clothes go limp on the floor and a flock of doves flies out of them and out the window. You tap the clothes with your phone shoe and see that they're really empty. You need to get out of here.

"I need to get out of here," you tell Svetlana.

"Why? We still have almost 10 minutes for sex."

"I take rain check for sex. I must escape bad men trying to steal best jokes and sell them to capitalist pigs.

Svetlana nods knowingly. "Use fire escape. Come back and see me someday."

You climb out the window and onto the fire escape, gently pressing past mostly naked go-go dancers who are grinding on the ladders. In the alley below is an unoccupied car you could probably steal for a quick ground-level escape. Above you, the fire escape (and go-go dancers) lead all the way to the roof, which might be less obvious to your pursuers. Which way do you go?
 
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Rock-Scar

The Sentient Sediment
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#14
Last car stolen have over protective bear inside (much superior than "the clubs"). I take the chances with go-go dancer roof.
 
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Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#15
You squeeze past the last dancer and summit the building. It's exactly what you imagined the roof of a Soviet multi-use structure would look like: Decidedly non-futuristic ductwork covered in graffiti that says stuff like "MUCH SUPPORT FOR REVOLUTION." You can see the whole city from up here - the ROSPLOSION plant, the TV complex, and the city's favorite tourist attraction: The World's Largest Sack of Concrete. It looked bigger in the brochure.

A box kite swoops up above the roofline, and you wonder for a split second at the simple majesty of it, how uncomplicated it is by geopolitical affairs. Then you realize there's an AK-47 tied to the underside.

You throw yourself down on the tar paper and roll under a duct just as the kite opens fire, causing it to dance around merrily. You'd heard about Soviet gun-kites but never thought you'd face one in the field. Intel suggested that tying a gun to a kite was kind of stupid, but as bullets rip into the ductwork above your head you find yourself reconsidering.

You chance a peek back out, and see a glint of light off the kite. It has a mirror attached to it at a 45 degree angle, which is letting the handler on the ground see what the kite sees, except flipped. This is a relief: At least the person trying to kill you isn't psychic, probably. What do you do?
 
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Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#17
You break out the balloon kit, dig out one of the few spherical ones, and quickly pump it up. Digging through the makeup kit's supply of fingerprint dust, tweezers and reagents, you find an actual grease pencil, and go to work. You call upon your knowledge of the Craft, the way a few garish details can bring out the sadness of a face. Or a balloon. You decide this balloon is a clown who has seen a thousand sufferings and has thrown a pie into the face of each. A fighter. A man like yourself.

A few more rounds tear through the ductwork overhead, causing a nearby section to collapse, and you decide that's good enough.

Rolling behind an air conditioning unit the side of a small car, you pop into a crouch and gently raise the clownface balloon up into sight. It is immediately shredded by gunfire, but you tuck and roll back in the direction you came from, betting your life that the kite can't pivot fast enough to catch you.

Emerging from behind the AC unit, you whip out the pump gun and, lining up the notches on the surface with the kite, force the plunger all the way down. The mirror shatters, and a second later you hear someone on the ground complaining about glass in their eyes. You're about to complement yourself on a good shot, but then you hear a second voice, and an enormous second kite heaves into view. This one has a rocket launcher.

It is now 10:15 in the morning. You have three choices: Run back the way you came and try to make it down the fire escape, keep running down the block of buildings, or go through the damaged ductwork and head down into the building.
 

Captain Video

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#19
You hastily wiggle into the open duct, glad to put your black-belt wiggle training to the test. You're almost all the way in when the RPG kite fires and destroys the nearest AC unit in a whirling fireball of scrap metal and chlorofluorocarbons. You think about how much bigger the hole in the ozone layer is going to be this year and wince. You hope the penguins won't mind a little extra sunburn in the name of freedom.

Inside the duct, you're badly shaken by the blast, but the shrapnel is absorbed by the sheet metal walls. These buckle and distend in intriguing ways that are less fun to imagine happening to your body. You notice an acrid smell. Glancing back towards your feet, you realize you weren't fully inside the duct when the blast hit, and your amazing phone/fax machine shoe and your les-amazing lead-acid battery shoe have both received severe damage. An expert might be able to fix them, but you don't have the time, the tools or the training. You're cut off from mission control and, perhaps more importantly, from the TV center.

You reach an elbow in the duct, say a silent prayer to St. Genesius, protector of clowns, and drop over the elbow and down into the building.

Three seconds later, you punch through a ceiling grate and slam into the floor in a cloud of communist dust. As it settles, you see that you are in the lobby of some kind of government office. People in queues are staring at you, stunned, as are the tellers, or agents, or whatever they are. Soviet bureaucracy has made everything look so alike that this could be anything. You have only seconds before somebody makes a phone call and you're dragged away to the clown gulag in Siberia. What do you do?
 
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Captain Video

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#21
You pop to your feet. "Comrades!" you cry. "I am people's best state-approved surprise clown! KGB is having told me now is someone's birthday!" You pray this works. There are maybe 30 people here, which make it likely today is someone's birthday.

One of the tellers tentatively raises her hand. "Please," she says. "I have family."

You're about to make her a balloon animal when a man runs through the door. He's an average-looking fellow - high cheekbones, glass eye, scar running diagonally across his face - but you see that he's holding a spool of kite string. "Hey!" he yells. "Has anyone seen a clown?"

"No," you tell him quickly.

"Thank you," he says, and actually starts back out the door for a second before doing a double-take. You need to act quickly.
 

Captain Video

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#23
You quickly inflate a balloon and, with a flurry of deft motions, fashion it into a "Moscow bowtie" - a handsome piece of neckwear that is also a noose. Before he can react, you've slipped this around your pursuer's neck. You pull him in close.

"You know penalty for betrayal, yes?" you whisper into his ear, followed by a sotto voce "hee hee" for extra menace. Beads of sweat pop out on his temple.

You release him and give a dramatic bow, which causes the button-up flap on your clown pants to unfurl, revealing polka dot underpants. The assembled burst into the kind of applause an audience only gives when you could have any of them killed, and for a moment you remember why you got into this line of work. Those bastards back in Akron who said you'd never make it as a clown, what do they know? They haven't made half as many people laugh as you have. They definitely haven't made half as many people die.

You rebutton your pants and make an exaggerated motion towards the door.

"Has been very good fun time clown show here at..."

"Kerosene Purity Testing Center and Allotment Bureau, Regional Branch 109," says the birthday girl. Your composure slips a little while you process this. She nervously holds up a glass ampule the size of a thimble, containing an amber liquid. "Free sample?"

You take giant clown steps over and politely accept. Nobody moves while this happens.

YOU GOT:
-World's Smallest Molotov Cocktail

Thanking the assembled, you make a running motion at the door, bounce off of it, then sheepishly let yourself out. You think you can hear the entire room exhale behind you.

Outside, the rocket launcher kite is lying on the sidewalk, where passers-by politely step around it while pointedly looking the other way. The AK-47 kite is crashed in a tree half a block down, where it is being pawed at by a cat with three legs. You consider taking one or both of them, and decide on the rocket launcher. A clown walking around with an automatic rifle might seem out of place, but nobody will question a clown with a rocket launcher. You pry the launcher from the body of the kite and shoulder it with confidence. The former owner was even polite enough to reload it for you.

YOU GOT:
-Pre-Owned Rocket Launcher

You check your watch/clock/bomb. It is 10:30 a.m. You need to move faster; you estimate you've only got time for two more assassination attempts on your person; three, tops. There's a subway terminal nearby, as well as a bus stop. Alternately, you could hail a cab or just start walking.
 
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Captain Video

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"No man can eat fifty Faberge eggs!"
#25
You have places to be and people to kill. You stick out a thumb and watch as the nearest taxi actually speeds up to get away from you faster. The one behind that, however, pulls right over.

It's a standard Moscow cab - 20 years old, bullet riddled, one working headlight. As it slows to a stop, you also notice that the bumper is lashed on with wire and the tires have as much tread as a baby's bottom. It's the perfect vehicle to blend in with a crowd.

You open the backseat door, toss the rocket launcher in on top of a bale of hay, and sit down on a seat that has been entirely resurfaced with criss-crossing layers of friction tape.

"Where to, comrade?" says the driver, his voice oddly muffled.

"Television complex, please," you say. You glance through the badly scuffed plastic divider and see that the driver is wearing a gas mask. You do not take this as a good sign.

He puts the car into gear under tremendous protest from the clutch, and pulls back into traffic. "Is that so, Mr. Noodles Ivanovich? Too bad you will not be making it there... alive." He begins to cackle under the mask, and you recognize his voice. It's The Magician.

He pushes a button on the dashboard and the cabin fills with noxious purple smoke. Unicycline gas - you know it by the smell of bubblegum. Frantically you claw at the door, but the handle comes off in your hand. You aren't sure if this is a trap mechanism or bad craftsmanship. You pull a handkerchief out of your sleeve, which is actually the beginning of a string of 100 of them, and use it to cover your mouth.

"Magician!" you gasp through the handkerchief. "Fight me like a clown!"

You're starting to black out now, your vision cloaked in purple haze. Suddenly there's a loud burst of gunfire and the windshied shatters. Up ahead, you see flashes coming out of a tree. The cat got its paw stuck in the trigger guard on the AK-47.

The Magician curses and the car veers out of control, plowing into a telephone pole at 25 miles an hour. With the last of your strength, you use the body of the rocket launcher to knock out the window on your door. You reach through, grab the external handle, and fall into the street as the door opens.

The people who were ignoring you when you were walking around with a rocket launcher have hit their threshold for cognitive dissonance and scatter in all directions. A bus coming from the other direction takes one look at this situation and locks its wheels in a desire to have nothing to do with you.

You pull yourself upright with the rocket launcher just as the Magician comes around your side of the car. He's bleeding from a bullet wound in the shoulder and his beard is a mess. In his good hand is a brace of throwing knives.

"I am having enough of you!" he yells. "You want fight? We fight!"