Okay, a post where I have to think a little, not just mindless copying from a cookbook. Hm.

Lydia came over on Sunday. We went to Left Bank, a lovely little French restaurant. We each ordered the soup and split an order of fondue and mussels with fries. The fondue was quite good. The soup was all right, but not exactly what I expected. We were so full by the time the mussels came that we had to get a doggie bag. I was a little worried about eating mussels the day after they were cooked, but they were fine. I ate them cold because I didn’t want them to get rubbery with reheating. I froze the broth, just in case I need something to augment a seafood dish in the future. I think we could have gotten just the fondue and the mussels and have been fine. Or we’d have had room for dessert- Lydia was interested in panna cotta, but we were too ful.

I was supposed to go to a TWoP meeting on Saturday, but I got extremely lost in the city and didn’t end up making it. We were going to meet at a bar in the Haight, but I screwed up the directions hardcore, and ended up driving through Twin Peaks (which looked vaguely familiar as a place I’ve gotten to while getting lost in the past) and eventually wound up at the Stonestown Galleria. At that point, I called Jon and told him I was coming over. LAME.

Last night was D&D, woo. Oh, I never wrote about what we did last week. Well, the Piran Sedestal was testing our wizard, Merreck, for entrance into the group. The test they decided to use was to have us all go back to the astral plane and move the planetoid either back to the material plane or to a pocket plane. We met up and fought a bunch of mindflayers- Mynnyd got mindblasted and couldn’t move for the entire fight, but Cooper killed two of them (and almost got his brain sucked out in the process) and Merreck disintigrated one. I don’t remember how the fourth one died. Once we got to the spheroid, we ran into a gelugon (ice devil) who scared the crap out of everyone except Mynnyd (look! I made a will save!), and they all ran off with brown trousers, leaving Mynnyd to deal with the devil, a hellcat, and an imp. Possibly something else, too. I almost killed the imp as it was running away (I think I hit it for thirteen points twice [it healed in between]), killed the hellcat, and decided it would be prudent to leave the devil when I got down to six hit points. Luckily, Mynnyd has a ring of elemental resistance to cold, which absorbs fifteen points of damage per round, which was useful because this guy liked to use cone of cold a lot. I mean, if I had that sort of power at will, I’d probably use it a lot, too.) I forget what else we killed. Random minions, I think. The devil was very interested in removing an infernal torture device from the planetoid and taking it back to hell with him. (This is the device, that, coincidentally, was used to kill all of Mynnyd’s clan members back in the day.) After another confrontation, we decided to talk with the devil. Which takes us to this week’s session.

According to him, there’s a bunch of gith-yanki on their way to the planetoid to… actually, I don’t know what they want, whether it’s the machine or the land or what. The devil wants our help in defending the planetoid so he can get the machine and we can do whatever we want with the planetoid. Because it’s always a good idea to make deals with devils. We ended up agreeing to this after fighting a bunch of githyanki warriors, a githyanki sorcerer, and a red dragon. Helping out on the devil’s side were some kytons. They didn’t seem to do much damage, sadly. I don’t think we got any hits on the dragon, although I did hit its rider with a couple of arrows. The devil fared better with the dragon, because the devil is immune to fire, and the dragon will take double damage from cold if it fails its reflex save. So, ow.

Our DM, Jer, came up with a very intriguing proposition to rid Mynnyd of his belt of displacement (20% missed chance, and I love it). The devil offered him a chance to free the souls of his clan from the ninth level of hell in exchange for the belt. I don’t want to let it go! But I’m pretty sure Mynnyd would do it. After we get some rest (so that Merreck has spells once again- those go FAST in the astral plane), we’re going to test his ability to release these souls, and then Mynnyd (most likely, damn it) will give him the belt so the others will go free.

We still don’t know what this machine thing does, but Sagittarius feels okay with letting the devil have it. I’m really not sure why.

There’s a book signing with Alton Brown tonight at the Books Inc. in Palo Alto. I’d go, but it’s going to be packed. Plus, I already have my book signed. Don’t want to wait in that line.

I soaked and prepared a bunch of dried cannellini and garbanzo beans over the weekend. I’m planning on using them in soups or something. Garbanzo beans are really quite tasty. I was surprised- I’d never eaten them just plain before.

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