Note that the following is a short story based on the events of my LD55 entry. I originally planned to create a simple “game” as a continuation of the story presented in the awfully short narrative that was originally presented, but right now my life has become strange, and I’m not sure if I’ll ever create it. For now, this short story is a retellling plus extra of the events of LD55: Gander and the Elemental Dungeon.

TL;DR: This post contains a short story retelling the events of LD55.

Gander and the Elemental Dungeon Link to heading

It was a little past noon, and Gander was trudging along the beaten path uphill. Time seemed to stay still as Gander began to lose his breath, each step uphill taking its toll. He stopped to rest for a moment, and his gaze fell upon the mountain that lied before him. As stories told, this mountain housed the dungeon that empowered those who could clear it. Gander had his hopes on sharpening his skills with such newfound abilities, but right now the task appeared to be beyond his current reach. He didn’t call for a horse at the beginning of his journey, as he did not want to risk losing one to thieves when he would enter the dungeon alone. But now his mind was regretting such a choice. His gaze then rested upon the strangely shaped doorway set in the side of the mountain. And that brought some warmth to his weary mind as his destination was near.

About an hour later, a tired Gander had reached the mountain-side. He leaned with one hand on the brown stone and took some time to regain his breath and composure. This was it. Soon the trial would begin. The trial to make his claim on newfound powers that would certainly aid him in future adventures. But his face turned from excitement to stone when he examined the entrance of the mountain. There was a strangely shaped block set in the entrance, one with a face. He muttered to himself, “So, there is a guard after all…” He reached back to his pouch in an attempt to confirm his belongings when the statue suddenly bellowed: “Come forth! You cannot tarry!” With these words, Gander could not finish his task and was compelled to walk forward, ending with his feet planted not five meters away from the statue.

“Not good.” Gander thought to himself. At a moment’s notice, he could only summon a sword or a hammer. He would’ve prepped for more item summons, but this situation would not allow him to get ready.

“You wish to obtain the elements? Prove your worth! You must first defeat the guard of the dungeon, and only then can you enter and risk all for the elements!”

At once, the stone statue leapt into the air. Gander twitched at the sudden movement. As the stone blocked out the sun, casting a shadow on Gander, he threw forth his palms and shouted, “Come forth, hammer of stone!” The gravel upon the earth around him suddenly flew towards Gander, and a root of a nearby tree burst from the ground, twisting around the gravel that melted together to form a solid piece of stone. With the hammer now formed, he cast one of his palms above himself as the stone statue began to drop towards him with frightening speed. With a loud clang, the hammer solidly struck the statue above him, halting its descent. Gander then dived to the left. The hammer followed him as the statue regained downward momentum and slammed against the ground where Gander had just stood.

“It looks heavy, but my hammer could stop it. It is not as tough as it looks.” thought Gander, as he rose upon his feet.

He then threw his palm once more against the statue, and the hammer that was circling him threw itself with the same direction. Another clang rang out, but this time, the statue was chipped.


Gander looked around, but realized the voice came from the statue itself.

“You, who are quick on your feet, you may enter, but when you leave, I only ask you leave tribute as this statue cannot repair itself on its own.”

“Who are you?”

“You may call me a guardian. I am not what you see before you, but I see from what is around you. You may enter, but beware. Folk much darker than you have been meddling with this dungeon. Perhaps you may come to understand the truth of the matter…”

With the voice fading away, the statue slid to the side of the entrance. Gander could now enter, but his confusion left him pondering what he had just heard.

Nothing could have prepared Gander for what lied before him. He had summoned a lantern and found a secret room by chance; he would always walk in corridors with a hand on the wall when it brushed against a switch. His hands now covered his nose and mouth. The stench of blood and rot was thick in the air.

“The truth of the matter?” thought Gander, “How can this be?”

What lied before him were several corpses. And one had a bracelet belonging to an adventurer’s guild. Another hand a hand clutching something. Gander carefully tried to release the hand’s grip by nudging it with his foot. It gave way and dropped an object. A mark of a cult. Suddenly, the object itself somehow “blinked”, and then twisted, spinning faster and faster until it disappeared from existence. Gander then felt as if his very being was heavy with some unknown force for a split second. Some part of him had a gut feeling, that he had been watched, and that his life may turn upside down by the words of the cultists he will cross paths with.

“The Hand and the Leg.”

It was a old cult, but a cult nonetheless. With the cultist’s mark now disappeared, he now knew that time was racing against him. The heaviness he felt was a common yet uncommon forbidden magic. A way to capture on paper a scene with life-like accuracy. Those weak of soul would have their very life “captured” from them. Luckily, Gander was of stout demeanor.

Gander knew he cannot continue his adventure in the Elemental Dungeon. If he took his time here, the forbidden capturing magic would label him a cultist. He needed to find the culprit(s) himself, or otherwise face exile or even execution. With this newfound knowledge of being stuck in a vise wearing down on his mind, he steadied his resolve and turned back. He needed to find the “Leg”.