Y'Gael, 1067 GUE

    Y'Gael gives AFGNCAAP a spell book (A) / (B)
    Y'Gael gives AFGNCAAP BOOZNIK (A)
    Y'Gael profile (A) / (B)


Years ago, before the end of the First Age of Magic in 966, Festeron was naught but a sleepy island community. There was a family in town that raised three young sisters. Y’Gael was the eldest of the three. Hortense was the middle. The youngest and scrawniest was Gladys, who later styled herself The Evil One.

Gladys was a sickly child, and an unhappy one as well. She claimed that their mother and father, and her sisters, in fact the whole town of Festeron, would go out of their way, any time, day or night, to pick on her. How much of that was real? Any family contains a certain amount of sibling rivalry, and perhaps parents are not fair with one child as with another. And there were a couple of bullies at school that picked on little Gladys because of her size. In some respect, all shared part of the blame for The Evil One’s actions. But Gladys was always overly melodramatic. From the time she was little, she always had a way of blowing things way out of proportion. Her evil nature had mostly to do with having spent two years in medical school. But that was before she realized her true calling—supreme nastiness. Since nastiness did not generally make for a good beside manner, she turned to her new vocation—freelance dictatorship, where she specialized in evil chuckles and demonic shrieks.

Y'Gael, on the other hand, became familiar with the powers of magic. Both she and her sisters had a talent that they could read another person’s mind only when their thoughts were particularly transparent. But it was not quite a remarkable as it first appeared. Her instincts were rarely wrong, and the few times that she was, she blamed them on extraneous circumstances.

The Final Conclave (966 GUE)
As an Enchantress, she was present at the Final Conclave of Enchanters in Borphee on Augur 14, 966 GUE, which was attended by every guildmaster and major enchanter. While the leader was seeking the mystery of this being, Y'Gael, now an old woman, had already realized that the First Age of Magic was coming to close (she had previously spoken with Orkan of Thriff regarding the matter). When she arrived at the guild hall, she found that the entire assembly, save the Head of the Circle, had been turned into various amphibians by the Shadow.Y'Gael used her powers to restore communication between them all with the NITFOL spell.

In the face of this situation, the newly-created newts and toads convened for one final fateful time. Y'Gael explained that when the Head of the Circle succeeded in his quest, the First Age of Magic would come to a close. The sorcerers knew that they would not live to see the day when magic would again hold sway over Quendor. But, they had a plan to ensure that their vast and ancient knowledge was not lost through the erosion of time. The sorceress Y’Gael proposed using the Coconut of Quendor as a container in which to preserve all of the knowledge and heritage of magic for a later age, beyond the Age of Science.

Because Quendor was now far too dangerous for those practiced in the thaumaturgical arts, the Enchanters decided to dispatch an innocent adventurer on the task of regaining and then hiding the transcendent Coconut of Quendor, within whose time-impervious shell laid the essence of their wisdom. Y'Gael was able to assist the peasant in his quest by following him via the Ethereal Plane of Atrii. She assumed the role of a shopkeeper in several cities in order to keep track of his progress. These included the Ye Olde Magick Shoppe in Gurth City, a boutique in Mizniaport, and a weapon shop in Accardi-by-the-Sea, all which were linked by a gate to the Ethereal Plane of Atrii, enabling Y'Gael to almost instantly travel between them despite their vast distance apart. Captain Zahab, Cardinal Toolbox, and Grote Clutchcake all assisted this adventurer throughout.

This quest led this anonymous peasant to ascend into the Ethereal Plane of Atrii, to purchase the Phee Hourglass from Y'Gael's Gurth City shop, and to eventually descend beneath the Mithicus Mountains to recover the lost Coconut of Quendor from the terrible Ur-Grue. Once the peasant had found the ancient relic, Y'Gael used her abilities to ensure that, with the help of the Coconut, the First Age of Magic would never be forgotten. For bound in a powerful incantation by Y’Gael, the Coconut was the spellbound keeper of a desperate purpose—the preservation of all knowledge of High Magic ever known to the Empire.

Y'Gael, along with Captain Zahab, Cardinal Toolbox, Grote Clutchcake, Sneffle the Baker, and the heroic ex-peasant sailed off into the sky on a magical galleon with the Coconut of Quendor, which was to be taken to an unknown destination to be kept safe until magic could be returned. 

The Fate of the Coconut (967 GUE)
The ship carrying the Coconut of Quendor met a terrible fate when it was swallowed by the great flying Watchdragon. The details of this account are related to us in a small excerpt from the “Voyage of Captain Zahab”:

...drop of water, and not a bit of food in the hold!

    A forthnight longer, and my mind grew infirm. Like a mirage in the desert, I began to see islands where there were none--and where I swore I saw only horizon not a moment before, hills grew up out on the water, right before my eyes. At first I thought it must have been all the rye I drank. I sent out a dingy. Not an hour later, a roar rocked out craft, followed by a terrific crashing noise, like a great granola mine had just collapsed. What vile menance inhabits this Isle of the Damned?

Dismembur 12

    We found the remains of the dingy on a floating island, along with one survivor. He had gone mad, raving incoherently about plugging the nostrils of some serpent beast. His last tearful words I record here so that I might share them with his loved ones.

    “We tried to pull the coconut from his mouth. But he knew. And woe, for his wrath was mighty!

Although at least Captain Zahab escaped alive, there are records remaining of the fate of two other members of the crew, Sneffle and Y’Gael. Sneffle would make the Watchdragon his place of residency for a time, but Y’Gael’s departure is shrouded in mystery. It is uncertain if the great enchantress temporary perished while her spirit drifted up to the Ethereal Plane of Atrii, if her spirit ascended there by will (either to escape the seas or at a future date), or if she ascended there bodily. Either way, the aging Y’Gael would manifest herself from the Ethereal Plane with the appearance of youth, but by the Second Age of Magic, be present upon the surface of Zork donned in her former vessel of old flesh.

But the Coconut of Quendor, along with the Skull of Yoruk and one of the Cubes of Foundation, each carried with it a part of a lost Rune of Abjuration, a sort of master magic spell woven in Old Speech between the three magical objects or artifacts. When the three powerful magic objects were recovered at last, the Rune would summon Y’Gael back down from the Ethereal Plane of Atrii. When the three Magic Treasures were combined according to prophesy and the wisdom of Y’Gael, their essences would be freed, and magic will return to the Empire. This would happen in 1067 GUE.

In those days, the beautiful lost enchantress of the Enchanters' Guild, having spent a hundred years in the deep "space" of the parallel existence in Atrii, had become a bit spacey, a bit flaky, and a sort of ditz. She was part of the magic counterculture and acted the mellow "peace love magic" freedom' fightin' part. She represented the magic that must be, and ultimately was, saved and returned to the land. In 1048, Dalboz of Gurth, who had been sprayed by Mir Yannick with Frobozz Electric Repellent, found his spirit torn from his body and ascended into the Ethereal Plane of Atrii, where it was he shared a walk-up with the Enchantress Y’Gael. Dalboz would have been happy staying in the Ethereal Plane of Atrii, but Y’Gael, wanting the extra room for an office, kicked him out in 1052. Dalboz’s spirit found its way into a rusty old lamp, stored in a crate beneath a dock in Port Foozle.

When Lucy Flathead was sentenced to be Totemized in 1058, she spoke that there would be only one, one who could call the Great Lady down from the Planes of Atrii, through the Last Door. She would come for Yannick, and a great sacrifice and a brave heart would destroy him.

Y'Gael was rumored to always give free stuff when people talked to her. Thus in 1067 GUE she oriented the adventurer, known as AFGNCAAP, who would be the one to call her down from Atrii, and also would don the title of Fourth Dungeon Master, at two critical junctures in the quest.
The first of these, was when Dalboz and AFGNCAAP contacted her from the Ethereal Plane of Atrii at the beginning of their quest. She informed them that if the Coconut of Quendor could be recovered, along with two other powerful artifacts in Zork’s magic treasury—a Cube of Foundation and the Skull of Yoruk—magic would again flow through Zork. To help with the quest, Y’Gael presented AFGNCAAP with a spell book at the onset to fill with contraband magic that had been hidden throughout the Empire, in hopes of spiriting some magic away from the Inquisition.

When this adventurer and his companions, including the famous Antharia Jack, arrived at the Flathead Mesa the following day, Y'Gael appeared them on one of the Inquizivision TV monitors. She offered  some final, critical words and presented AFGNCAAP with a BOOZNIK scroll. And thus, when the three artifacts were brought together and properly placed upon the radio tower, and MAXOV was casted to bind their energies, the three formed the Rune of Abjuration and, according to the prophesy, summoned Y'Gael down from the Ethereal Plane of Atrii. Their essences were freed and magic returned. The Second Age of Magic was ushered in.

The Second Age of Magic and Wishbringer
After the return of magic in 1067 GUE, Y’Gael left the Ethereal Plane of Atrii and entered her old aging vessel of flesh. She returned to her hometown of Festeron where she was the proprietor of the Ye Olde Magick Shoppe located on the cliffs of the northern island (which, like her previous shops, was connected to the Etereal Plane of Atrii by a special gate hidden behind a curtain). Like her other shops, this one too was installed with a gateway to Atrii. She soon came into the possession of Wishbringer, which had passed through many hands in the Festeron region. She had found it upon the hillside where the Magick Shoppe stood. Though “the Legend of Wishbringer” told that the stone was the heart of Morning-Star, Y’Gael dismissed it as “bullhooey”. In her opinion, the stone came from outer space. Regardless of its origin, the stone was one of the main sources of magic for the two islands which made up Festeron. And while many sought to gain the Stone of Dreams, Y’Gael spent many years fighting to conceal it from The Evil One and others like her. Much was forfeited to ensure its protection. Perhaps that is where this tale should begin, with The Evil One.

The Evil One discovered that whoever possessed the Wishbringer stone would be instilled with incredible magic and that it was in the care of her sister Y’Gael. She had wanted the stone for years for her own foul purposes; mainly, the conquest of the islands, then of the world beyond. Gladys had always thought big. If she was to get her way, she would not stop with Festeron, but would take over all the neighboring countries, and then their neighbors in turn, until she controlled everything upon the surface of Zork! But this could only be done if she was able to take Wishbringer, and, at the precise stroke of midnight, place it in the forehead of the statue of Chaos, Y'Gael's very own cat. Then her power would increase a thousandfold, and she would become virtually unstoppable. Thus Gladys planned to place an entire curse upon Festeron, turning it into the dreaded, profane Witchvill. Witchville.

The first of these curses happened at the beginning of the end of Augur or the beginning of Suspendur, 1157 GUE. In those days Y'Gael was an extremely aged gray-haired woman. Her thin pale face and bony hands made her look fragile, like a fading signature in an antique book. But her clear-gray eyes remembered everything they had ever seen. She wore clothing such as a cameo that joined together the top of a starched white blouse. Many people warned to stay away from the Magick Shoppe, as she frequently went on about black cats, magic quests, The Evil One, and a rock that made wishes come true.

It was an ordinary Frob Day afternoon in the little seaside town of Festeron when Gladys first implemented her curse. As a part of her plan to control Wishbringer, the Stone of Dreams, she captured Y’Gael’s cat Chaos. This feline, black as night from head to tail save one little white spot right in the middle of her forehead, was turned into a black marble sculpture about 14 inches high, and the only way to bring the cat back to life was to insert Wishbringer into a round, shallow hole carved into the sculpture’s forehead. Gladys composed a ransom note to be sent through the Festeron postal service:

Deliver the Magick Stone to me before the moon sets or you will never see your cat again!

--The Evil One

It had been a long time since Y'Gael had seen Gladys handwriting. And when this government employee arrived at the Magick Shoppe and read the letter aloud before she, the old woman was motionless and welted with tears of anger. For after all of her years fighting to conceal Wishbringer from The Evil One, now her only companion, Chaos, was claimed. Y'Gael asked that should the postal worker came across her cat, to bring her back home. Knowing that The Evil One could see the thoughts of men, she did not reveal the place where the Wishbringer Stone was hidden, as Gladys would take the treasure for herself. Instead, Y'Gael had cleverly concealed the magical artifact under the false bottom of a metal can. She lied by promising to give the postal worker Wishbringer for a reward if Chaos was returned to her, knowing full well, that with success, the virtue of the stone would be lost with the restoration of her cat. As the postal worker left the shop, Witchville began its first reign.

The postal worker thwarted Gladys' plans by inserting the Wishbringer stone into the forehead of a feline statue that was located in the Festeron Public Library's museum. A blast of magic shook the building at the relic touched the forehead of the sculpture. It softened into a black cat. This not only restored Chaos, but defeated Gladys and her Witchville curse. The postal worker returned Chaos to Y'Gael. The black cat gave Y'Gael more joy as a companion than as a stone.

Gladys first attempt was foiled, but she was not discouraged.  Her wickedness endured for many years, and through many postmen. For the postman became the central figure in this little drama, and it was more important to Gladys than to Y’Gael that the postman played out his part. Generally, when Y’Gael received one of The Evil One’s notes, she gave Wishbringer to whichever postman had delivered the letter to her. Then it was that one’s job to be the guardian of the stone, making sure it did not fall into the wrong hands, and somehow foil Gladys’ plans all over again. The whole thing became like a game to Gladys. But if she captured the postman, he was in trouble. If she captured him and discovered that he had been trying to escape from the island—well, trouble was no longer a strong enough word for what he would have gotten himself into. He would find himself wishing he had a less painful death, being nibbled slowly over a period of hours by the sharks in Festeron Harbor.

Though Hortense had not been originally involved with the Witchville conflict, she later joined sides with Y’Gael. It was during these years in which several rules were set in place. The foremost was the prohibition for either of her two sisters, Y’Gael and Hortense, to have direct involvement with the affairs. This was only agreed upon because of Gladys’ adherence to other rules, including restrictions placed upon Boot Patrol routes, and magical assets to the current postman that could not be destroyed (such as a magic radio, Kitchen Wonder, and magic glasses).

Two decades following Mr. Sneed as the postal worker, Simon was the next in succession. For when he arrived at Festeron, the town had been without a postal worker for weeks and weeks. Its villains conspired a plan which they believed would ensure the permanent transformation of Witchville. Gladys orchestrated it, that prior to sending the current postman with a ransom note to Y’Gael, she would steal Wishbringer. Gladys did so, obtaining the stone by subterfuge, but was only able to succeed with her task because Y’Gael had let her have it. Of course, Gladys thought that she had stolen it from her. But when Gladys swiped the magic rock, she also swiped a little extra spell Y’Gael placed upon it, a spell that would activate only when Festeron is turned to Witchville. The minute Witchville appeared, the stone would disappear. It would become invisible and furthermore move three feet to the left of wherever it had last been in Festeron. Thus Gladys would have casted her spell with no way to complete it. For no one was able to see the magic Wishbringer stone, unless they were wearing the magic glasses. But there was more to the plan. The villains had thought they were so clever, planning to succeed by choosing a postman of ill repute. With the aid of the High Court, they had selected Simon, who, in their opinion was doomed to failure. They had thought Simon to be a common criminal, a lowlife who would run at the first challenge. And that was where they would make their first mistake.

Simon did not realize at first that his delivery to the Magick Shoppe was part of a scheme instigated by Mr. Crisp on behalf of Violet Voss, two of The Evil One's minions. As usual, Y'Gael told the postal work to read the letter aloud to her:


Dearest sister:

I have you now. Even as you read this, my minions are taking over the country. And I have found the stone. There is no way you can stop me. By dawn tomorrow, Witchville will be forever!

Yours Cruelly,

The Evil One

Y’Gael explained the normal procedure that the usual postmen embarked on. Usually she would present the postman with the Wishbringer stone which would be used to aide him in the quest to retrieve Y’Gael’s cat. This time, however, Gladys already had the stone. Simon had been chosen in this specific instance, because it was believed that he was doomed to fail. Y’Gael did not believe that. At that time the clock struck 6:00—Festeron transformed to Witchville. Simon had to capture the stone from Gladys before the night was through. Without the stone, Gladys was helpless and Festeron would return with the dawn. She also warned him about the dangers of Witchville, and the transformation of the civilians’ personalities.

As was commonplace, Y'Gael and
Hortense kept their distance from direct involvement in the conflict. But The Evil One broke five of the agreed upon rules in this specific attempt:
  1. The Boot Patrol was forbidden to enter the cemetery
  2. The Boot Patrol was forbidden to enter the underground passageways
  3. The magic plastic glasses were forbidden to be destroyed
  4. The radio was forbidden to be destroyed
  5. The Kitchen Wonder was forbidden to be destroyed
At the moment that Gladys broke the last of these five, Y'Gael and Hortense materialized into the The Evil One's laboratory where the final round was taking place. While their presence in the entire Witchville affair was breaking the rules, they did so only to stop Gladys from further violating more. Each of the three sisters summoned magical creatures to do battle: a magnificent golden eagle for Y’Gael (a light appeared above her head, then coalesced into a magnificent golden eagle), a miniature horse with dark blue wings for Hortense, and a half-scorpion, half-spider creature for Gladys. The Evil One lost, but when the sisters relaxed their guard, the Evil One fabricated a colony of huge snakes that wrapped themselves around them so that their arms were pinned to their bodies. Before anything could grow worse, the Honorable Roger arrived with the Platypus Guard. The troop rescued the entangled sisters and carried them out of the room. There was now only 2 minutes remaining. In the meantime, Simon was able to prevent Gladys from obtaining Wishbringer before the clock struck midnight.

Once Festeron had instantly been restored, Y’Gael and Hortense returned, informing Gladys that Sergeant MacGuffin would soon be there to take her somewhere to rest. Tasmania, in love with Simon, inquired of the sisters if they might be able to make him into a platypus. Whether serious or in jest, they simply told her that they would work on it. Simonw as praised as a hero. He returned Wishbringer to the two goods sisters, who, overjoyed, promised to shower him with gifts and anything else he wanted within reason. Simon had to remain a postman, as only the Festeron court could remit his sentence, and they had all went on vacation when Witchville appeared, thus it appeared that Simon would be required to defeat The Evil One once or twice more during the time of the court’s vacation, but there was problems that came with every job.

While no historical accounts have surfaced detailing what became of any of these figures  following this triumph, almost all scholars presume that the curse of Witchville continued on. How many postmen and curses followed? One may never be certain. It is however, well agreed upon, that by the First Great Diffusion, that the Witchville curse was finally revoked, at least temporarily. There are no records that claim its continence into the Third Age of Magic, or beyond, and does seem rather unlikely.