Alone In the Dark, by Dan d'Alimonte

Story name: Alone in the Dark
Author: Dan D'Alimonte
Publication date: November 25, 1997 (on TSA-List)

Date: Spring 706 CR
Location: Metamor Keep, northeastern Metamor Valley


Dan goes on a patrol and loses an arm.


While tending to his greenhouse plants, Dan is reminded by Copernicus that he hasn't been on patrol in four months, and that he is to go on a patrol that evening. After getting armor and weapons and his assigned route from Jack, he sets out along a mountain path to the northeast. In the night, he is attacked by 10 Lutins, and manages to fight off eight before his right mid-arm is taken off. As another group prepares to attack, Dan shifts to a three-inch grasshopper form and flees for an hour before passing out. He vaguely remembers someone lifting him and placing him somewhere soft. He awakes in his bed with Jack beside him; Pascal had found him in the greenhouse. After delivering his report, Jack wants to know how he'll pay for the weapons he lost. Dan agrees to put it on Jack's tab at the Mule until the cost is covered.


Main Characters:

  • Dan D'Alimonte: Grasshopper morph, quartermaster and caretaker of the greenhouses. He is shy and doesn't have many friends, preferring the company of plants. He loses his right mid-arm while on patrol.


  • Copernicus: A confidante. He asks if Dan has sorted out a shipment, and reminds Dan of his duty to help defend the Keep.
  • Jack deMule: The armor master. He prepares Dan for his patrol, and is debriefed at the end.


  • Pascal: The alchemist. She finds Dan unconscious in the greenhouse while getting goldenrod for an experiment.
  • Posti: The Prime-Minister. He wants people on patrol.

Points of Interest

  • Dan is responsible for the construction of the greenhouses, which were built to provide food so that the Keep doesn't rely on caravan deliveries as before. They also provide herbal ingrediants for healers or mages, and act as an indoor garden space.
  • Dan has his own specialized leather body armour to protect his joints; his exoskeleton provides the rest of his protection.
  • Dan has an amulet that generates a field of heat.
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