The Valley of Death
|The Valley of Death|
|◄Eamon adventure #122►|
|Revised||16 June 1988|
|EDX set||The Sam Ruby Adventures|
|Native format||Apple DOS 3.3|
From the introduction:
You were sitting in the pub one night, enjoying a brew with a good friend. He started talking about a fantastic deal he had heard about. You followed him across the street. You asked him not to keep you in suspense any longer, but he would reveal nothing. You entered the Mayhem Inc. Building, a favorite supplier for adventurers with a little dough.
"I'm starting to get impatient," you told your friend. "You know I just recovered from that wound the Balrog gave me. I'm not interested in buying any equipment right now."
"That's not the kind of deal I'm talking about," he said. "Look, we're almost there."
"Almost where?" you asked, but your friend did not hear you.
You entered a small, well-kept room. An interesting-looking rock, placed within a small case, caught your eye. Your friend grabbed your shoulder and said, "Look at this." You turned around and saw a large sign.
This is your big chance!
Need two good warriors not afraid to face danger. Organizing expedition to the Valley of Death. Untold riches await.
Wages: Fifteen thousand gold plus a full share of all treasure. Equipment provided. Meet at Green Dragon Inn on the twenty-first.
"Interesting," you said.
"You know this is perfect for us," said your friend. "Fifteen thousand! Plus treasure! And equipment! How can you pass this up?"
"Very easily," you replied. Your leg still hurt where the flaming whip seared through your skin. The deal sounded good, but it wasn't the right time. "Besides," you argued, "I've heard stories about this Valley of Death..."
"What? You, scared? Man, for fifteen thou and who knows how much more, I'd sing to Sauron himself! Valley of Death... Ha... Old wives tales. What do they know?"
"More than you do, fool!" Said a voice behind you.
You wheeled around to see an old, one-eyed man. One look at him and you could sense that something was special about this battle-weary veteran.
"I was once young, energetic, and full of adventure, as you are now. I wanted to take on the world, thought I could, as you put it, 'sing to Sauron himself.' I, too, laughed at the tales of the Valley of Death. How foolish I was! You know, sometimes old wives tales are not as tall as they may seem."
Thoroughly captivated by the old man's words, you begged him to explain.
"You see that rock over there?" He asks, pointing to the case you noticed before. "That rock is the only thing ever brought out of the Valley of Death. It is dusty, but if you look carefully you will notice that it is pure gold!"
"How do you know all this?" Asked your friend.
"How?" He replied. "I brought it out! I am the only man to ever survive the Valley of Death!"
He went on to describe the valley. "The River Anduin breaks off and enters a deep valley made of stone. Once in there, there is no turning back. You must reach the high pass — and then the danger triples! If the hunger doesn't get you, the creatures will. Then there're the big lizards..."
"If it was so bad," your friend asked, "how did you escape?"
The old man's face went blank. His answer left your friend's mouth gaping.
Oh, how you wish your friend had remembered the old man. But, no, "Damn you and the old geezer," he went anyway. And now he's gone. But you're not giving up. You owe it to him. Who pulled you up all those times when the ground crumbled below you, whose bow was unerring when your sword missed the mark? No, you're not giving up... He may be dead, and you may die searching for him, but where there's a heart, there's a hope, and where there's a will, there's a way.
Do it to it!
In the adventure's introduction the old man states that it takes place "where the River Anduin breaks off and enters a deep valley made of stone," which suggests the setting is Middle Earth (in common with Ruby's four previous and four following adventures). The River Anduin is the longest river in Middle Earth and flows generally south from the Grey Mountains, through Rhovanion, past Rohan, Moria, and Gondor, and into the Bay of Belfalas. The river in Ruby's adventure flows mostly north, but as noted may be a branch instead of the main channel.
- Eamon Adventurer's Guild Library Master List
- The Interactive Fiction Database: The Valley of Death
- Interactive Fiction Reviews: The Valley of Death