Circles in the Stream, Chapter 15: Boss Time!

Last we left the party, they were flying on Phel back towards Ravenswood.  Ozzie says that Phel has to return home, and that the party needs to find a portal that will take them there.  Luckily, there’s a convenient natural marker for this portal: the Rocking Stone, which points right to a clearing near the hidden glade.  The party heads for the portal, but wait!  A gigantic, scary, winged monster appears!

Boss: Manticore
A winged half-lion, half-simian creature from another world. Magic tracker. Heavily irradiated by Black Fire.
Abilities: spits Black Fire (causes Poison status)

The manticore shoots Black Fire at the party, and they go crashing down into the clearing.  Phel is badly poisoned, and Emily alone can’t Heal him, so Adriane and Kara amplify the spell.  Now healed, Phel attempts to give the party the Fairy Map again … but the manticore swoops down and steals it.

Then the manticore demands that the party hand over their Sparkly Rocks.  Just one problem — the girls can’t unequip them.  I guess that means it’s time for a boss battle!

Stormbringer’s attacks aren’t very effective; the manticore is far stronger than the wolf.  Kara amplifies Adriane’s and Emily’s Sparkly Rocks while they cast Magic Missile, but that just creates beams of magic that shoot out everywhere.  The party eventually learns how to control their powers and knock out the manticore.

And then the portal opens.

Phel escapes safely with the girls’ help.  Ozzie leaves the party to follow him.  The manticore comes to its senses and gives the You’ll-Never-Amount-To-Anything-Hero speech to the party.  In the new edition, Emily’s rock glows a dark color during the demotivational spiel.  Of course, the party will have none of that, so they fire a coordinated amplified Magic Missile at the manticore and knock it into the portal before it closes.

Boss Defeated!
Adriane learned Magic Missile!
Emily learned Neutralize Poison and Detect Alignment!
Party learned Triple Tech: Improved Magic Missile!
Ozzie rejoins the party, because he didn’t really go after Phel!
… and whatever experience and loot the party gained.

Yes, that’s right, there’s combination attacks in the Avalon universe, just like in Phantasy Star or Chrono Trigger.

Notice that the party didn’t kill the manticore.  This obviously means it’ll come back as a more powerful (and possibly annoying) boss later.

EDIT: Changes in the e-book edition

  • Emily is sprawled over Phel after the crash landing instead of Adriane.
  • Adriane rolls off of Phel and helps Emily after the crash landing; their roles are reversed in the revised print edition.
  • Emily’s magic + Adriane’s magic = a blast of green healing magic. (Same thing happens in the print edition, but the e-book clarifies things.)
  • Adriane’s Sparkly Rock is referred to as a “wolf stone” instead of a tiger’s eye.
  • Adriane doesn’t cry when Stormbringer fights the manticore.

Next time: the CDC inspection!



  1. Yay Chrono Trigger and Phantasy Star references!

    This makes me think of the book as one of those games where you download it in segments, and this would be the end of the first one.

    1. Yay, I’m not the only one to think of the series as a video game. I was actually thinking of making an Avalon RPG in RPG Maker, but grad school is obviously eating up most of my free time. Maybe in a few years, when I have less work to do….

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