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I kept silent, as this horrendous story unreeled across my mind.

"There is a way to stop the Shoggoths, however", the Mi-Go continued. "At the end of main passage that you followed to this room lies a chamber. In the middle of that chamber is a stone altar which harbours a medallion known as The Eye of Azathoth. The Eye was another trophy of our wars with the Old Ones. It requires sunlight to operate, and, because of my raceís photosensitivity, we were never able to use the device. However, our capture of the Eye also meant that its devastating quasi-genocidal power could no longer be used against us. The Eye, once charged by sunlight, emits a deadly black beam. If the beam is aimed at and strikes a foe, a molecular chain reaction occurs which not only destroys the target but all other creatures in a wide vicinity which share the targetís DNA. Thus, if you strike one Shoggoth with the Eye of Azathoth, all of the Shoggoths in this pit will be destroyed. Then, their psychic hold on me will be broken and I will be free to escape this tortured existence into death. My body is atrophied and useless and my mind so tormented that I do not wish to live. I simply crave release."

I was not wholly unfamiliar with the name Azathoth, the blind idiot god believed to writhe in the universeís chaotic core, and I am not ashamed to say that my possession of a device associated with the deity was slightly unsettling. Also, I was not convinced that this Mi-Go was as magnanimous as it was presenting itself or that, if I had met it in its prime, it would have been quite so conciliatory towards me. It was obvious that this pitiful creature would gain from the destruction of the Shoggoths. Thus, I wondered if I could trust all that it had told me. However in the Necronomicon, the mad Arab Abdul Alhazred hinted of the Shoggoth horror and I understood the grave threat that these unholy creatures represented. Therefore, I mentally accepted the Mi-Goís

Lucius ponders his role

task and it urged me to complete it with all alacrity and not concern myself with its present predicament. By destroying the Shoggoths, I would be saving this Mi-Go.

This entire exchange of thoughts occurred in a mere moment of time, and soon, I found myself back in the main downward sloping passage. The ominous slurping, wet noises I occasionally heard echoing deep down in the side corridors took on new import. I found it very difficult to conceive of how vast this underground complex must be. I walked stealthily and was thankful that, as of yet, I had not garnered unwanted notice. I continued down the warm moist passage, trusting to the sickly green fungoid glow to guide me, as I did not wish risking the use of my torch.

Lucius recovers the Eye of Azathoth

After a time, I saw that the passage lead to a large, thick rectangular doorway deeply etched with terrifying ancient symbols. I carefully crossed the threshold and spied a large basalt altar, carved with unearthly geometric patterns. Affixed to the center of the altar was a grotesque golden star medallion encrusted with brilliant gems. In the center of the medallion was a dark unblinking crystal eye. This, I surmised, was the Eye of Azathoth. I approached the device and attempted to discern how it could be removed. I pulled gently at the medallion, and to my surprise, it easily detached from the altar. However, as the item detached, a tortured screech issued from either it or the altar, momentarily deafening me.