Ruanon is a remote mining province to the south of your homeland, Sommerlund. Nestling between the sullen peaks of the Durncrag and Maaken mountains, the people of this province have long prospered from their toil in the ore-rich mines, living and enjoying their wealth under the protection of their lord—Baron Vanalund.
The gold and gems that are mined at Ruanon yield an important source of revenue to your homeland. The heavily guarded convoy of wagons that leave the province and journey to the capital has become a regular monthly routine; a routine that had never been broken until one month ago when, suddenly, all contact with Ruanon ceased. A troop of one hundred cavalry from the King’s Guard were immediately dispatched to investigate the whereabouts of the missing convoy. Their commanding officer, Captain D’Val, was ordered to report back to the King as soon as contact was made, but he and his men have not returned: they too have disappeared without trace.
The King has summoned you, Lone Wolf, last of the Kai Lords, to his citadel at Holmgard. Your quest is to find Captain D’Val and his men, discover what has happened to the missing convoy, and to uncover the veil of mystery that now hangs over Ruanon. The King has gathered a company of Border Rangers, a unit of élite scouts, all of whom are skilled in horsemanship and outdoor survival. He has ordered these fifty men to accompany you in the hope that, with your leadership, they may succeed where the larger and more visible force failed.
As you and your men enter the Royal Armoury to equip yourselves for the long ride ahead, you glimpse a black crow perched on a window ledge high above. It flies away, but not before a shiver has run down your spine: in Holmgard, the crow is a bird of ill omen.
You keep a record of your adventure on the Action Chart.
During your training as a Kai Lord you have developed fighting prowess—COMBAT SKILL and physical stamina—ENDURANCE. Before you set off on your adventure you need to measure how effective your training has been. To do this take a pencil and, with your eyes closed, point with the blunt end of it onto the Random Number Table. If you pick 0 it counts as zero.
The first number that you pick from the Random Number Table in this way represents your COMBAT SKILL. Add 10 to the number you picked and write the total in the COMBAT SKILL section of your Action Chart (i.e. if your pencil fell on the number 4 in the Random Number Table you would write in a COMBAT SKILL of 14). When you fight, your COMBAT SKILL will be pitted against that of your enemy. A high score in this section is therefore very desirable.
The second number that you pick from the Random Number Table represents your powers of ENDURANCE. Add 20 to this number and write the total in the ENDURANCE section of your Action Chart (i.e. if your pencil fell on the number 6 on the Random Number Table you would have 26 ENDURANCE points).
If you are wounded in combat you will lose ENDURANCE points. If at any time your ENDURANCE points fall to zero or below, you are dead and the adventure is over. Lost ENDURANCE points can be regained during the course of the adventure, but your number of ENDURANCE points can never rise above the number you started with.
If you have successfully completed any of the previous adventures in the Lone Wolf series, you will already have your COMBAT SKILL, ENDURANCE points, and Kai Disciplines which you can now carry over with you to Book 4. You may also carry over any Weapons and Special Items that you held at the end of your last adventure, and these should be entered on your new Action Chart. (You are still limited to two Weapons and eight Backpack Items.)
You may choose one bonus Kai Discipline to add to your Action Chart for every Lone Wolf adventure you have successfully completed; then read the section on equipment for Book 4 carefully.
Over the centuries, the Kai monks have mastered the skills of the warrior. These skills are known as the Kai Disciplines, and they are taught to all Kai Lords. You are a Kai initiate which means that you have learnt only five of the skills listed below. The choice of which five skills these are, is for you to make. As all of the Disciplines may be of use to you at some point on your perilous quest, pick your five with care. The correct use of a Discipline at the right time can save your life.
When you have chosen your five Disciplines, enter them in the Kai Disciplines section of your Action Chart.
This Discipline enables a Kai Lord to blend in with his surroundings. In the countryside, he can hide undetected among trees and rocks and pass close to an enemy without being seen. In a town or city, it enables him to look and sound like a native of that area, and can help him to find shelter or a safe hiding place.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Camouflage’ on your Action Chart.
This skill ensures that a Kai Lord will never starve in the wild. He will always be able to hunt for food for himself except in areas of wasteland and desert. You are aware that the Wildlands south of the Pass of Moytura are a wasteland and that opportunities for successful hunting may not arise until you reach the Ruanon Forest. But this skill is still very useful for it also enables a Kai Lord to move with great speed and dexterity.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Hunting’ on your Action Chart.
This skill may warn a Kai Lord of imminent danger. It may also reveal the true purpose of a stranger or strange object encountered in your adventure.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Sixth Sense’ on your Action Chart.
This skill enables a Kai Lord to make the correct choice of a path in the wild, to discover the location of a person or object in a town or city and to read the secrets of footprints or tracks.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Tracking’ on your Action Chart.
This Discipline can be used to restore ENDURANCE points lost in combat. If you possess this skill, you may restore 1 ENDURANCE point to your total for every numbered section of the book you pass through in which you are not involved in combat. (This is only to be used after your ENDURANCE has fallen below its original level.) Remember that your ENDURANCE cannot rise above its original level.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Healing: +1 ENDURANCE point for each section without combat’ on your Action Chart.
Upon entering the Kai Monastery, each initiate was taught to master one type of weapon. If Weaponskill is to be one of your Kai Disciplines, pick a number in the usual way from the Random Number Table, and then find the corresponding weapon from the list below. This is the weapon in which you have skill. When you enter combat carrying this weapon, you add 2 points to your COMBAT SKILL.
The fact that you are skilled with a weapon does not mean that you set out on this adventure carrying it, but you will have opportunities to acquire weapons in the course of your adventure. You cannot carry more than 2 weapons.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Weaponskill in _______ +2 COMBAT SKILL points if this weapon carried’ on your Action Chart.
Some of the hostile creatures of Magnamund have the ability to attack you using their Mindforce. The Kai Discipline of Mindshield prevents you from losing any ENDURANCE points when subjected to this form of attack.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Mindshield: no points lost when attacked by Mindblast’ on your Action Chart.
This enables a Kai Lord to attack an enemy using the force of his mind. It can be used at the same time as normal combat weapons and adds two extra points to your COMBAT SKILL. Not all the creatures encountered on this adventure will be harmed by Mindblast. You will be told if a creature is immune.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Mindblast: +2 COMBAT SKILL points’ on your Action Chart.
This skill enables a Kai Lord to communicate with some animals and to be able to guess the intentions of others.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Animal Kinship’ on your Action Chart.
Mastery of this Discipline enables a Kai Lord to move small objects with his powers of concentration.
If you choose this skill, write ‘Mind Over Matter’ on your Action Chart.
If you successfully complete the mission as set in Book 4 of Lone Wolf, you may add a further Kai Discipline of your choice to your Action Chart in Book 5. This additional skill, together with your other skills and any Special Items that you have found, may then be used in the next adventure in the Lone Wolf series which is called Shadow on the Sand.
Before leaving Holmgard on your ride south, you are given a Map of the Southlands, a Badge of Rank that you wear upon the sleeve of your tunic, and a pouch of gold. To find out how much gold is in the pouch, pick a number from the Random Number Table. Now add 10 to the number you have picked. The total equals the number of Gold Crowns inside the pouch, and you may now enter this number in the ‘Gold Crowns’ section of your Action Chart. (If you have successfully completed previous Lone Wolf adventures, you may add this sum to the total of any Crowns you may already possess. Remember you can only carry a maximum of fifty Crowns.)
You may take your pick of the following items (in addition to those you already possess, but remember you may only carry two weapons). You may take up to six of the following:
List the six items that you choose on your Action Chart, under the heading given in brackets, and make a note of any effect it may have on your ENDURANCE points or COMBAT SKILL.
Now that you have your equipment, the following list shows you how it is carried. You don’t need to make notes but you can refer back to this list in the course of your adventure.
Any item that may be of use and can be picked up on your adventure and entered on your Action Chart is given capital letters in the text. Unless you are told it is a Special Item, carry it in your Backpack.
There will be occasions during your adventure when you have to fight an enemy. The enemy’s COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points are given in the text. Lone Wolf’s aim in the combat is to kill the enemy by reducing his ENDURANCE points to zero while losing as few ENDURANCE points as possible himself.
At the start of a combat, enter Lone Wolf’s and the enemy’s ENDURANCE points in the appropriate boxes on the Combat Record section of your Action Chart.
The sequence for combat is as follows:
This process of combat continues until the ENDURANCE points of either the enemy or Lone Wolf are reduced to zero or below, at which point that combatant is declared dead. If Lone Wolf is dead, the adventure is over. If the enemy is dead, Lone Wolf proceeds but with his ENDURANCE points reduced.
During your adventure you may be given the chance to evade combat. If you have already engaged in a round of combat and decide to evade, calculate the combat for that round in the usual manner. All points lost by the enemy as a result of that round are ignored, and you make your escape. Only Lone Wolf may lose ENDURANCE points during that round, but then that is the risk of running away! You may only evade if the text of the particular section allows you to do so.
The following table is a guide to the ranks and titles that are bestowed upon Kai Lords at each stage of their training. As you successfully complete each adventure in the Lone Wolf series, you will gain an additional Kai Discipline and gradually progress towards mastery of the ten basic Kai Disciplines.
Beyond the ten basic skills of the Kai Master await the secrets of the higher Kai Disciplines or ‘Magnakai’. By acquiring the wisdom of the Magnakai, a Kai Lord can progress towards the ultimate achievement and become a Kai Grand Master.
Your mission will be fraught with danger, for you are about to venture into the bleak and hostile Wildlands of the south. Use the map to help you plot your course to Ruanon. Make notes as you progress through the story, for they will be of great help in future adventures.
Many things that you find will aid you during your adventure. Some Special Items will be of use in future Lone Wolf adventures and others may be red herrings of no real use at all, so be selective in what you decide to keep.
There are several routes to Ruanon, but only one will enable you to reach the mining town and find Captain D’Val with the minimum of danger. A wise choice of Kai Disciplines and a great deal of courage should enable any player to complete the mission, no matter how weak his initial COMBAT SKILL and ENDURANCE points score. Successful completion of previous Lone Wolf adventures is not essential for the success of this quest.