Portrait by DALL-E 2
|Affiliation||Guild of Free Adventurers|
The Beginners Cave|
Enhanced Beginners Cave
Beginner's Cave II
Lord William Misslefire (also sometimes spelled "Missilefire") is the Knight Marshal of the Guild of Free Adventurers.
Function Within the Guild
The principle job of William Misslefire seems to be to make certain regulations concerning weapons and fair play are followed within the Guild. He first makes his presence known to new adventurers outside the various beginner training areas where he inspects entrants to make sure they are of beginner level and refuses entry to anyone who looks too strong. In addition, he asks anyone who returns to the Main Hall to get rid of any weapons beyond the legal limit of four (usually by selling the excess to Sam Slicker).
While undoubtedly an official of the Guild, it is unknown whether William Misslefire is employed by the Warlord mentioned in the introductions to several beginner adventures, or even whether he is self appointed. He does, however, have employees of his own; in Fiends of Eamon if the adventurer returns with more than four weapons, his assistant, Irving the Infinitely Prolonged, plays the Knight Marshal role in in the place of his boss.
Interestingly enough, he does not appear to guard The Alternate Beginners Cave, which suggests either that this is a cave setup specifically outside his influence, or that (as per the demolished sign and warning notice), this is an area no longer in use by the guild.
The introduction to The Lair of Mr. Ed mentions that Misslefire has a deputy named P'Tin Kan who is responsible for safe-guarding the king's castle against sabotage.
In Eamon Deluxe
In the Eamon Deluxe conversions of beginning-level adventures, William Misslefire has relaxed his role of keeping more experienced adventurers out of beginner areas and the guild has appointed the adventurer Zeus Hightower Flabbergibungander to serve as Ranger Marshal and keep watch over The Beginner's Forest.
The Knight Marshal's personality seems extremely stern and unbending in the performance of his duty. Though recent happenings suggest the law regarding stronger adventurers entering beginner areas has been changed, William shows his displeasure for those who buck what he still sees as the rules. He also has never known anyone carry more than four weapons into the Main Hall. It is uncertain whether he and Sam Slicker have some sort of arrangement, since undoubtedly the system of selling excess weapons benefits the salesman, though likely it is more the case that Slicker is taking advantage of the system which Misslefire enforces, rather than there being any actual cooperation between the two.
Whether he has the combat skills to enforce the rules, however, is unknown, since on the only occasion the Adventurer's Guild itself was attacked, an assault by the Bandit's Guild in A Runcible Cargo, Misslefire was said to be absent.
Any adventurers entering the Main Hall with more than four weapons will be stopped by William Misslefire and required to sell the extra. In Adventure in Interzone, it is revealed that it is "Eamon Adventurer's Law #505 Beta-Frap (Clause 6)" that codifies this prohibition. In all beginner adventures, Misslefire guards the gates, and in all but the Eamon Deluxe versions will not let any stronger adventurer through.
In the Eamon Deluxe versions he is still there for most adventures (though he no longer appears in the deluxe version of The Beginner's Forest, where his job is taken by the Ranger Marshal). He also seems to have relaxed his guard, though he will still make his displeasure known to stronger adventurers.
- "William Misslefire" is a pun on the name of Donald Brown's friend Bill Fesselmeyer, who founded a local chapter of the SCA and occasionally dressed as a knight marshall.
- In some Eamon adventures, the present Knight Marshal is referred to as "Lord William Crankhandle". As this name appears in the 7.1 MAINPGM, it is likely that this character is the invention of Tom Zuchowski. In Revenge of the Bookworm, Misslefire's role of enforcing the weapons law is played by Vito, the proprietor of the Main Hall's pawn shop.
- In Fiends of Eamon, Crankhandle has a new assistant named Irving the Infinitely Prolonged.
- In John Nelson's Orb of My Life, Lord Harvey Killabrew performs similar duties to Misslefire's but at the royal palace.
- Misslefire's French counterpart in J. M. Menassanch's French port of Eamon is "Sire Guillaume Boutefeu."