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Oz naturally began to laugh uncontrollably at the joke that forever boy had told with such vigor that he had to brace his hands on his knees to steady himself from the strain of it but it proved to be little more than a stop gap and he quickly fell onto his back wheezing for air.

 

Snorting and tugging at various legs and horseily repeating parts of the joke to them to try and help them understand how funny it was.

 

"Murder most foul..…!" Though it did little other than make him break back into laughter once he had enough breath again.

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GM

 

The Fun Guy looked up, despair in his face, groaning at the awful joke. His face was probably brown skinned originally, but with a thousand and one fungal infections running through his flesh, one couldn't accurately determine his ethnicity. It was arguable whether one could determine his gender. 

 

The mushroom men looked at each other. 

 

Now, the joke was clearly awful. A pun on "fowl"? What a turkey. 

 

But the mushroom men started....laughing?

 

"Ho ha ha haaarrrrr"

 

"Harrr harrr hooo hummmm!"

 

"Tell us....another!"

 

The Fung Guy groaned and put his head in his hands. 

 

"What are you doing? We came to cutstub!" hissed Boddyflock, poking Pan's ankle with his sword angrily. 

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"Well, yes. Cutstabbing is good and all, but do why exactly? Look upon the fun guy, sitting in the midst of the fungi. Does he appear happy to you? Does it appear that he wishes to be here?"

 

He did look quite disgusting, however. All those fungal infections did not do the man any favors, did they now?

 

But the fungi wanted another? Well, that could buy them some time, at least. He made another illusion, throwing his voice to the other side of the room. "Where do you hold a catshow? A mewseum!"

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GM

 

The Fungi looked at each other, a bit bewildered. 


"Har Harrrr Harrrrrr!" they rumbled after a pause. 

 

"CUT STAB!" yelled Boddyflock, dancing on his pointed shoes. "Although that was quite funny!" he added, conceding the point. Penny giggled at the ridiculous nature of the enterprise. 

 

"Enough of this nonsense!" said Lorenzo, who had the sense of humour of a glacier. A particularly humourless glacier, at that. "We have come here to find a cure to my ailment. I sense the good king can help us. Why, his growths reek with elemental power!"

 

"GET ME OUT OF HERE! WHATEVER YOU, DONT TELL THEM ANY MORE JOKES! THEY WILL MAKE YOU KING!" screamed the half insane mushroom king, yelling and echoing around the enormous mushroom hall. 

 

"Har Harrrrr Harrrrrr! Anotherrrr! Anotherrrr!" mumbled the mushroom men in unison. 

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So, who to listen to? The Fae, the Black Rose, the Mushroom King or the Mushroom Men? So many choices, neither of them friendly and happy as all get out? Maybe buy them some time!

 

"Perhaps he do have some manner of cure that could help you, my dear Black Rose! But did you not hear what the Fun Guy said? Tell them jokes, and they will make you king! Sounds just like the thing for you!" And this man did not seem like he he actually liked to be here. Maybe cutstab the fungi instead of the fun guy? Could that be the thing to do here? Pan did not like to to start the fighting without knowing all the pieces on the board, after all.

 

"Captain Boddyflock, it does not appear that the fun guy is as fun as one might have believed at first glance. Or that he is having any fun, for that matter. Perhaps it is in order to hear what he has to say? He might help you with the cutstabbing, if given half the chance?"

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GM

 

"Jokes? Jokes?" grumbled the Black Rose. "I am not known for my sense of humour, Sir!" he said indignantly. "Potions and Balms, Roses and Thorns. Alchemy and Chemistry. NOT jokes!" he said firmly. 

 

"Who would have guessed?" retorted Penny Coin, sarcastically. 

 

"Do you mock me?" said an even more indignant Lorenzo, his gaseous eyes red, glowering at both Pan and Penny. 

 

"A fine tactic!" said Boddyflock, stroking his minute beard. "If the Fun Guy is truly...ah...well....not so Fun!"

 

"Find out for us! We shall hide! We dare not give up the cutstab advantage of stealth!"

 

He whistled a quiet whistle to his four soldiers, and, with surprisingly well drilled speed, they dissapeared from eye and ear. Their tiny size may have rendendered them short of sword, but they were almost undectectable when they wanted to be. 

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"Yes. Yes I do." Pan's reply to the Black Rose was short and precise. Yes, he did indeed mock him, and he did indeed intend to mock him much further, if it came to it. But he had little to gain from becoming a king of fungi, and it seemed to the Black Rose's desire, so perhaps he should aid him. Then they could commence with the cutstabbing later.

 

Pan moved to Lorenzo, and whispered to him. "Try this one, then. See how the fungi that you adore will react. Who knows, they might just make you king?" After a brief pause, he whispered the joke to the Black Rose. "Knock knock. Who is there? Etch. Etch who? Bless you!"

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Oz having gotten over his laughing fit now found the whole situation terribly dull all things said and done and was no beset by an intense urge to make some chaos to stir things back up again...maybe light something on fire to see what colour it burned.

 

For now however he was content to amble around investigating things and wimbe nimble beneath his breath in an off kilter humming sound.

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GM

 

The Black Rose had some skill in comedy. 

 

Unfortunately, he had it at birth, and immediately it was surgically removed in a radical comedyectomy performed agressively by some existential force that had determined it would do a particularly good job on this occasion. 


"Bless you! Who is there? Etch who? Knock knock. Etch!" he said in a robotic voice, squeaking the last mangled phrase in a high pitched note of anxiety. 

 

He waited to see if the punchline hit. 

 

In another strange realm, the Gods of Tumbleweed flexed their divine might, and celestial winds blew over the scene...

 

"Harr.....Hmmmm......what is that mean?" mumbled one of the Mushroom Men. 

 

"Oh Gods....just my luck...." moaned the Fun Guy, head in his hands. 

 

"Do you mock our Lord of Fun?" mumbled another Mushroom Man, advancing on Lorenzo in a state of agitation and with squishy mushroom hands ready to throttle. 

 

"So much for you and your ridiculous joke!" admonished Lorenzo, angry at Pan. 

 

"Guys....we might be invisible....but they know where we are...." hissed Penny Coin at them all. "I hope you have some trick up your sleeve for these guys. Like a giant frying pan and some garlic...."

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Oz's mind had indeed been unshackled from the hear and now and cast into the everywhere and always  by the fungal fluids he'd ingested but now that time had passed his beffudled brain was getting unbound, his brain attempting to get his memories in order had opted for random reshuffling.

 

Just like that Oz seemed to change his demeanour and personality as he strolled back to the group, stood upright and haughty in his pronounced pride as he paced between them with an appraising eye.

 

"Now, now my young apprentices no talking in the middle of a lecture! If you cannot grasp the basics of what we are discussing here today I fear you will find yourself relegated to the position of mage-wrights and apothecary work!" He snapped moodily before pointing a stubby finger at one of the mushroom men.

 

"Bellerophon Marsh! What is the first law of thaumaturgic conservation?" He of course gave less than a second for the mushroom man to answer"WRONG! If you are going to be a censure-mage it is vital you know how to break self sustaining spells! Perhaps writing it out 500 times during lunch will help you remember!"

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Well, yes, Penny was right of course. Which was why Pan had tried to at least throw his voice elsewhere with the aid of his illusion, but Lorenzo had no such skill or knowledge. Or ability to tell a joke, mangling even one as bad as the one that Pan had tried to feed him! Really, this Black Rose was hopeless in the realm of humor, as dull as the gas that he was made of.

 

And then Oz took the stage. With little fanfare, Pan changed the image of nothing he had created about them, making Oz very visible, leaving the rest hidden still. If Oz were to try his hand, he would have to be seen. And no longer was it simply an image of nothing around them, it was instead the middle of a grand lecture hall, with desks and blackboards and what had you. Just something to try and help whatever Oz was trying.

 

Though if that didn't work, maybe some cutstabbing would be in place.

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GM

 

The invisibility, or visibility, was a very neat trick indeed. 

 

And yet, now that Pan looked closely, he could see the mushroom men had no eyes. Blind as a bat! 

 

"Oh Cruel Gods...." grunted the Fun Guy, standing up from his throne. "These mushroom men cannot see. They can pick up on any tremor beneath their feat, and they can hear very well indeed. But they cannot see" he explained to Oz. 

 

"And it is sour irony. I have been driven half mad here, and my saviour is a lunatic...." he said, face anguished at Oz's incoherent babbling.

 

"This is not a lecture hall, wizard! This is the mushroom mountain! These idiot mushrooms have made me king, for my ability, apparently, to tell a joke....and they will not let me go!"

 

"Harrr Harrr....Idiot!" laughed the Mushroom Men, evidently thinking this slur was another excellent joke by the Fun Guy. 

 

"Oh mercy!" groaned the Fun Guy, sliding back to his throne again. 

 

"Harr...Harrr....Oh Mercy!!!" laughed the Mushroom Men once more. 

 

"Careful, mad wizard. These creatures will infect you as they have me!"

 

"Infect!" groaned the mushroom men, who did not laugh at this notion. But determined, yes indeed, determined they were...

 

The twelve of them started stumbling and sliding towards Oz, mushroom arms extended, the pustules and spores of their flesh bristling!

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"do not worry my students." Oz said calmly and with a serenity out of place in his mushroom induced hallucinations

 

"today we shall be doing something more practical." He he added before turning back to the mushroom men and becoming visabily enraged in the blink of an eye (would there be one amongst the mushroom men to begin with)

 

"How dare you threaten my students you Upstart!" He screamed at them "I doesn't matter how many of you there are for even a thousand zeros is still nothing!" He bellowed as he raised his arms and placed his hands together to form a roiling red sphere that upon closer inspection had a surface not dissimilar to a roiling star "taste now the power of a supreme wizard as I crush you to dust and cast you into the wind!"

 

And with that he released the most tremendous spell he had yet cast since his exile...not that he remembered he had been.

 

A tiny point of scarlet red fire forming between his hands before exploding outwards in a raging come of perticullarly jagged and blade like flames  that washed out, forming into rough semblance of humanoid warriors as they raced forth and with their ethreal blades of flame lashed out at the mushroom men searing and slicing away furiously, cauterizing as they cut.

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Well, no eyes! That made the entire masquerade quite unnecessary, did it not? With a sigh, Pan dismissed the image of nothing and the classroom around them, making them all very visible as Oswald began unleashed magic and fire while shouting about strange things that were probably not here at all. It did appear that he was not attempting to trick the Mushroom Men, but were rather lost in hallucinations from having had a taste of the Mushroom Mountain. He should probably not have done that, should he?

 

At least the Fun Guy was being useful! They sense tremors beneath their feet, these Mushroom Men? Then he should make none, Pixie Dust falling from him as his feet lifted from the ground, floating up, higher into the cave. See what would happen now that Oz had made his move, then make his own. And probably not get too close to those Mushroom Men. Infect was such a nasty word.

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GM

 

Tyhe eldritch fire spewed forth, hitting the closest mushroom men, who emitted a horrible high pitched inhuman shriek as the fire consumed them. They flailed around a bit, but soon fell down, burning and charring. The smell of roast mushrooms filled the cavern. 

 

The other mushroom men looked angry and scared - although given they were mushrooms and eyeless ones at that, their capacity for facial expression was limited at best. 

 

The Fun Guy, the King of the Mushroom men, patted down his sleeves. "What? I'm trying to help!" he gasped at Oswald. Then he grew angry. And mad. Although he was probably mad already. "IM NOT GOING TO ROAST TO DEATH IN THIS HELL HOLE!" he screamed at the top of his fungus infected voice. 

 

"Ex-pun-giate! Ex-pun-giate!" they mumured in fungal unison, advancing onwards. 

 

"Expungiate? is that even a word?" asked a confused and alarmed Penny Coin, holding her sword ready. 

 

"Its something to do with a pun!" proclaimed Captain Boddyflock, who clearly had lost all patience with jokes and puns. "Methinks it is CUTSTAB TIME!"

Edited by Supercape

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