The Difficult Life of a Wizard PhD. Student16 min read

  • Post category:Stories

You are Zolan, a wizard living in the kingdom of Larion. You have a staff and a spellbook. You finish your long journey and finally arrive at the ruin you’ve been looking for. You look around and see that it’s almost completely destroyed. The only thing left is a broken down house with several bodies lying on the ground. “I think I found it!” you shout and run into the ruins. The next few days are spent exploring the ruined city.
> see what I can find in the ruined city

After a couple days of searching through the rubble, you come across a small room filled with books. You pick one up and examine it: “This is an old book about magic”. You read the title and then turn to the first page. It reads:
 “A Brief History Of Magic”.
> read the book

You open the book and begin reading. You don’t really understand all of it, but you do learn something interesting. It says that before the time of the great wizards like Merlin and Alistair there was another age where magic existed, but not much.
> keep reading

The more you read, the more you realize how little you know about this world. The only thing you’re sure of is that you need to be prepared for anything. And so begins your journey into the unknown…
> keep exploring the rubble

Your curiosity gets the better of you and you continue to explore the ruins of the city. Eventually you come across a large hole in the ground leading to darkness. You cautiously step inside and peer around the corner at the tunnel ahead.
> go further into the tunnel

You walk deeper into the tunnel until you reach a point where the tunnel ends. There’s no light down here either, but you can still see the outline of some sort of structure. As you get closer, you notice that it resembles a huge metal cube.
> investigate the cube

You carefully investigate the cube. Its surface is covered by strange symbols and patterns. You can’t make out any words or even determine if they mean anything, but you figure you’ll just look at them for now.
> copy the symbols into your notebook

You copy the symbols onto your notebook as best you can. They look very complicated and you can’t quite tell if they’re actually telling you anything. In fact, you start wondering if you should try to decipher them yourself, because you’ve never been good at languages.
> finish copying the symbols then leave

You finish copying the symbols and leave the cube behind. You wonder if you shouldn’t keep looking around for other things to discover. Maybe there’s a way back home?
> go back to the University of Magic

You return to the university to report your findings. Professor Gannon tells you that he doesn’t believe you and that he thinks you’re making too many assumptions. He also mentions that he doesn’t think you’re going to be able to go back home either since you haven’t left the city yet.
> try to convince him your work is important

You explain that you’ve been studying the city walls for years and that you’ve found several hidden passages leading to places that aren’t accessible from the outside.

 You say that you’d like to take a small group of students with you on this expedition. Professor Gannon says that he might be willing to let you study under his tutelage, but not right away.
> say “When will you let me finish my PHD?”

You ask Professor Gannon when he plans to allow you to study under his tutelage. He says that he hasn’t decided yet, but he hopes to do so soon. He goes on to say that he hopes that you’ll be able to find something useful to do while you wait.
> ask him how many PHD students he has

You ask how many PHD students he has and he replies that he doesn’t know exactly, but he believes that he has about twenty-five.”So what are you waiting for? I’m sure you could use the help!” you exclaim.

He looks over at you with disapproval before turning back to the wall again.”I suppose it would be better if we took a break first,” he says. “We could get some rest and then come back stronger”.
> leave and go continue the research on your own

You decide to take a break from the project and go off by yourself. While you were pondering your next move, you suddenly hear a loud noise coming from above. It sounds like someone has opened up the door to the room where you’re currently staying.
> see who is there

You see a young man dressed in casual clothing standing near the entrance of the room. He’s wearing a robe which covers most of his body except for his head and hands. His face shows no signs of any magic abilities whatsoever.
> ask him who he is

You ask him who he is and he answers that he’s just an ordinary person looking for shelter. He says that he was sent here by the king himself as part of the official welcoming ceremony. He says that he’s sorry to disturb you, but he had to speak with you directly.
> talk to him

You start talking to him and he seems very friendly. You try to tell him everything, but he keeps asking questions. Eventually you give up and just listen to him talk.
> listen to him

The man explains that he’s been studying the nature of magic for quite some time now. He mentions that he’s read books on the subject and even spoken with other wizards, but nothing really stuck out to him until recently.
> continue to listen

After listening to him for awhile, you begin to realize that he probably isn’t going to be able to teach you anything either. In fact, he might not even be able to save you!
> ask him if he can decipher the symbols in your notebook

You ask him if he can decipher the symbols in your notebook and he tells you that he can’t do so either since he hasn’t studied the language itself.
“Well…that’s odd”. You say.
> see if anyone else at the university can decipher the language

You look around the room for anyone else and find none. The man continues to speak about how he was sent here because he’s one of the few people in this country that actually knows something about the subject.
> go back to the ruined city with the metal cube

You return to the ruined city with the metal cube and begin to study it. As soon as you open it up, you find that it’s completely empty. No buildings or anything. You then notice another small piece of paper lying nearby. This one looks slightly different than the others though.
> read the piece of paper

You read the piece of paper and immediately recognize it as being from the invitation letter you received. It reads:
Dear Sir,
I am writing to invite you to stay at my home during the night. I trust that you will accept?
> think “How did this person get his letter in this box?”

You think about how you got the letter in the first place and then you remember what happened yesterday. You quickly go through all the steps again and realize that it wasn’t a random act. Someone must’ve put it there. You also remember that the letter was addressed to you.
> go to the giant metal cube with symbols on it

You go to the giant metal cube with symbols on it and begin to study them. After a while, you come across an image which looks like a circle with a cross inside it. You study the symbol for a moment and then you see that it says ‘Y’ followed by a number.
> continue studying it

You continue to study the symbol for a bit longer and eventually you come across another image which looks like a triangle with a dot inside it. You study the symbol for a bit more and then you come across yet another image which looks like a square with a line through it.
> translate the symbols

You translate the symbols into their English equivalents and they turn out to be very simple indeed. They just mean ‘yes’. You also note that the symbols seem to be repeating themselves. Perhaps someone is trying to tell you something.
> keep translating

You keep translating until you finally come across a word which you don’t understand. It seems to be some sort of combination of two words together. You try to make sense of it but nothing comes out. You’re not sure if its even possible to make sense of it.
> cast discover magic on the cube

You cast discover magic on the cube and it doesn’t do anything. You also notice that the cube isn’t moving either. You then realize that you’re probably looking at your own reflection in the cube.
> meditate about the cube

You meditate for quite awhile about the cube. Eventually, you fall asleep. When you wake up, you find yourself in a room full of strange machines. A voice speaks to you from behind the machine.
> listen to the voice

You listen carefully to the voice and soon you hear it again. This time, it’s coming from the cube. The voice tells you that he wants to speak to you. He explains that he has been watching you since you entered the room and he knows everything about you.
> ask the cube who he is

You ask the cube who he is and it answers that it is a friend of yours. You wonder why it would want to talk to you, but then again, you were wondering why it wanted to speak to you in the first place.
> ask what it wants

You ask the cube what it wants and it replies that it wants to know what you think about him. You explain that you can’t help him because you haven’t spoken to anyone else about this.
> tell him you’ve been writing your PHD thesis on it

You tell the cube that you’ve been working on your PhD thesis on the cube and that you believe it will be ready by next year. The cube says that it’s impressed by your work and asks if you’d like to see it.
> say “I’d love to see it!”

You say “I’d love to see it!” and the cube smiles and nods.”Very well, I’ll take you to see my boss”. And with those words, the cube disappears.After a few minutes, you get back to work.
> wait for the cube

You wait patiently for the cube to return so you can translate his message. Finally, the cube returns. His face looks very different than before. He now has a scarred face and his eyes look redder than ever.
> ask him what happened

You ask him what happened and he says that he was attacked by a demon. He goes on to say that he tried to fight them off, but they overpowered him and drained him of all his energy. He then dies.
> take the cube’s body back to the university

You take the cube’s body back to the university where it is put into a glass jar and frozen. (The university doesn’t bother to keep the real one anymore) After a couple years pass, the university decides that it’s time to open it up and start using it as a teaching tool.
> finish your PHD thesis on the cube

You finish your Ph.D. thesis on the cube and it becomes known throughout the world. It also gets used as an example when teaching others how to do their own research.
> apply for professor positions at a university

You apply for professor positions at several universities around the country and eventually land a job at the University of Chicago. There, you teach courses on the cube.
> search for love

You search for love and find it. A girl named Brenda comes to visit you one day while you’re studying the cube. She tells you she’s just come from her home town of Dorna, which is near the border with the Kingdom of Larion.
> tell her you’re from Larion as well

You tell Brenda that you’re from Larion and she seems happy about this revelation. Soon after, you begin dating her.
> take Brenda on a date

You take Brenda on a date and things go smoothly until…One night, you wake up to find Brenda gone. You immediately think that something must’ve happened between you two. You don’t know if there was anything wrong or not, but you decide to check.
> see where Brenda is

You see where Brenda is and it turns out she left with another man. You don’t know why, but you feel like you should confront her about it. You make sure to leave a note saying you’ll be right back.
> go cry next to the cube

You go crying next to the cube for a few days before finally getting over it. The next year, you get a letter from Brenda telling you she’s leaving the city again. This time to live in the village of Ralok. You wonder if you can still talk to her though.
> search for another girlfriend

You search for another girlfriend and find none. You then realize that you were never really good at all with women anyway. You try to figure out what went wrong with you. Maybe you shouldn’t have been working so hard on the cube. Maybe you should’ve focused more on yourself.
> take solace in your work

You take solace in your work and continue to teach classes on the cube. One year later, you receive a letter from Brenda. She says she’s sorry for breaking up with you, but she wants to meet you again sometime soon. You reply back saying you’d like to meet her too.
> agree to meet Brenda

You agree to meet Brenda and she agrees to meet you too. After a brief exchange of pleasantries, you both enter the room where you begin talking about the future. You explain that you plan on teaching some classes on the cube and that you hope to start meeting new people soon.
> keep talking to her

You keep talking to her and eventually she begins to listen to you as well. Eventually, you begin to develop feelings for her. You also mention that you want to start taking her on dates. She accepts your advances and starts to become interested in you as well.
> take Brenda on a date

You take Brenda on a date and things go smoothly until…The next day, you wake up to find Brenda gone. You immediately think that something must’ve happened between you two. You don’t know if there was anything wrong or not, but you decide to check.
> cry again from your abandonment issues

You cry from your abandonment issues once more. You don’t even bother trying to hide anymore since you’re too busy worrying about her. You just wish she could understand.A month passes and you hear about the death of your friend Nolazir.
> withdraw further into isolation and depression

You withdraw further into isolation and depression. You don’t speak to anyone else except Brenda and the occasional passing thought about her. It isn’t long after this that you lose contact with the rest of the world altogether.
> focus entirely on your work studying the cube

You focus entirely on your work studying the cube. You feel like you’ve solved the riddle of the universe.

 You can only imagine how much time you’ll save by being able to live forever.
> keep studying the cube

You keep studying the cube and it pays off when you finally get a message from Brenda. She tells you that she has been transferred to another castle and asks if you would like to come visit her. You tell her yes and she says she hopes you will be able to help her.
> change your mind and tell her no

You change your mind and say no. You tell her that you need to study the cube first before you can make any decisions. She thinks nothing of it and tells you that she understands.
Two years pass…
> study the cube some more

You continue to study the cube and it seems to pay off when you finally manage to crack it. You then realize that you didn’t really solve the riddle at all. The other side is actually the solution. You now know that you weren’t meant to die here.
> give up

You give up. You don’t want to die here. You can’t even talk to anybody else about it. You just start walking around town thinking about what you should do next. Eventually you run out of supplies and have to sleep outside. You wander aimlessly for weeks.
> live homeless on the street

You live homeless on the street. You think about going back home but you decide against it. Instead you spend your days wandering aimlessly until one day you stumble upon an old abandoned house.
> go inside the house

You go inside the house. You find yourself staring at a beautiful woman who doesn’t seem to notice you’re there. She smiles at you and touches your hand.
“I’m sorry I haven’t seen you,” she says softly.
> say, “Brenda? Is that you?”

“Yes, it’s me”.

“What’s wrong?”

“It’s me, my love”.

She looks into your eyes as if trying to read your mind.
> ask “How could you leave me twice? Why would you hurt me so much?”

“Because I loved you”.
“But why did you abandon me?”
“Because I had to leave you once again”.
“Why wouldn’t you want to stay with me?”

“Because I had to”.
“But how could you possibly know?!”
“Because I knew you were too weak to stop me!”
“Then why did you let me live?!”