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PRINCE OF PERSIA: WARRIOR WITHIN - PC/PS2/GC/XBOX FAQ/Walkthrough by J Woodrow <mansion880@yahoo.co.uk> Version 1.

0 - 2006/03/03 _________________________________________________________________________

P R I N C E O F P E R S I A -- Warrior Within -Written by Corey May and Michael Wendshuh -- Adaptation by J Woodrow -------------------------------------------Breathless footsteps run to the blur of an ancient walled city at first light of dawn. Towers and rooftops glow as if on fire. The sound of running and labored gasping for breath echoes down narrow twisting streets. An ominous growl rises behind. A hooded figure frantically flees along deserted alleys, under a network of rafters and lantern-lit arches. He vaults a fallen beam, looks back, quickly right, then left down a maze of alleys, and takes flight once more. Suddenly in his path a rabid dog, slavering jaws bared. The greater danger comes behind. He dives past, and with a yelp the wretched cur is swept aside by the black rushing cloud that boils in his wake. The young man swings to high rafters, searching for escape. Whatever pursues him has awesome power, it splinters the heavy beams like matchwood. He jumps to the ground and runs once more through the twisting cobbled streets. His feet pound wildly. From the relentless shadow of destruction tentacles reach out. He jumps scattered pots, smashed moments after by the dark force rushing ever closer. He stumbles to a dead end, throws his shoulder to a heavy door, again and again, and hammers a fist uselessly. Cornered, he turns, draws swords and stands tall to face the ravening beast. In his mind's eye, a flash of events that brought him to this. A sailing ship plows through a storm, its bow plunges to the waves. Lightning flickers. Rain whips the cloaked figure of the Prince of Persia. "This storm shows us no mercy," he shouts above the wind. "We shall respond in kind! Reef the mainsail." His men struggle up the rigging. He puts a hand to the shoulder of the mate. "Bring us closer to the wind." Above the storm he senses something at the edge of the dark. A hail of flaming grappling irons shaft out of the night to hook on to the rails. From the deck of a looming pirate ship, savage creatures haul ropes. The Prince's ship is dragged remorselessly towards that of the

Pirates. He shouts courage to his men. "Ready your weapons!" He shrugs off his cloak and holds sword aloft. Men slide from the rigging. Fireballs crash down on their ship. Sailors rush to the deck, swords in hand. A horde of pirate raiders confront them. The Prince stares open-mouthed. Framed in lightning the Pirates howl from their ship - not men but hellish creatures that brandish hideous weapons and utter low animal cries. As they draw nearer an Amulet the Prince wears on his breastplate glows as if in warning. He clasps it tight. The horned demons growl, fangs bared and red eyes burning with hate. They heave the ropes that drag the helpless ship ever closer. With no regard for the icy lash of rain and salt spray, from below decks on the massive attack vessel a near naked female figure steps slowly to her stage. Pirates haul ropes. The ships crash together. The creatures roar in triumph, then fall to silence, turn and part as the figure appears and walks among them. A voluptuous young woman, no more than a girl but sure of her power. Cropped black hair, black lips, black boots to her thighs, barely attired in strips of black leather. She carries a sword, moves among her minions, caresses one and another as a pet. On the other ship the men are awed, the Prince transfixed. The cruel smile vanishes from her lips. She snarls a command. "Kill him." The creatures swarm aboard. One sailor falls to a sword thrust, another has throat cut and on a growl of triumph from his attacker is thrown overboard. With a challenging cry, the defiant Prince vaults a burning rail, sword in hand. Two of the pirate creatures circle. He throws up a block as they strike together, then returns swiftly to cut the first down with a volley of blows. It collapses to a cloud of foul yellow dust and vanishes with a shriek. Though they bleed these are not even half-human creations. He has no time to consider, the other is on him. He vaults nimbly over and tosses it to the sea. All around are the sounds of the struggle and clash of steel. Explosions rock the blood-soaked deck as the Prince advances and cuts down another Pirate. He moves about the open, fighting, blocking, and holding back one and another until he can slash with his sword. He tries different moves and learns swiftly. He executes on each attacker whichever combination of sword strike seems best, with the same shriek and the same crumple to blood and yellow dust at its end. Temporarily blocked by burning debris, an explosion clears the way and he fights on. A missile strikes the crows nest high above; a luckless sailor is blown out, and falls with a cry. His body smashes through the wooden deck, tumbling the Prince down the shattered gap to the hold. The bilges are awash. He takes a scoop of water to clear his head and gropes through the darkened hold. A few of his men fight a desperate hand-to-hand struggle with Pirates at the bow. Too late to save them, the Prince finishes their attackers with a furious charge and a flying swing about a deck prop. Though inhuman, these creatures it seems are sentient

beings, as one offers a dying curse: "You have made yourself many enemies this day." Their number will surely become fewer as they make themselves known. He moves on below the other side of the ship, likewise flooded. A harpoon bursts through timbers, narrowly missing his head, and a second and third close beside. Water sprays in. He runs on, and is confronted by another Pirate raider. About to strike, the Prince is knocked hard as the attacking ship crashes into his, splintering the hold and crushing the hapless Pirate. Yet more water rushes in. His ship is surely doomed. The Prince moves on up a short flight of stairs, but is trapped by burning debris. Dead crewmen lie at every corner. He spots a rope stretched taut, grasps tight and cuts it with his sword. He is hoist aloft, springing with its release beyond the deck above, flying through the air, where he is launched into the soft folds of a billowing sail, tattered and licked by flames. With his blade to slow the fall, the Prince slides to a spar and drops onto the open deck. He looks to the bridge. The girl in black stands imperious. She gazes down on him without emotion. A sailor rushes behind her, sword raised. She flicks one casual blade and cuts him down at a stroke. On the open deck below, creatures surround the Prince. "Let's finish him," says one. "Help me with this." As many as there are they prove no match for the Prince's soon practiced blade. "You'll have to do better than that," he advises. "I will not allow you to stand in my way." Anger rises as he sees the bodies of his men all around. Fiery arrows streak down on a deck already ablaze. He leaps over a massive grappling iron to make his way to the bridge and the one responsible for the destruction of his ship. With a furious cry he clears a last Pirate from the gangway to the bridge and turns to confront the she-devil there. Her near naked figure steps out above. "You will never reach our shores alive," she warns. "For your sake, you'd better hope I don't." He races up on the bridge to challenge her. "Flee," she warns, "while it's still an option." His only thought is for revenge, and their swords clash. She proves a much better fighter than any of her minions. The Prince is forced to block her furious attack again and again. She probes with her sword, tempting him to drop his guard but then launches a flurry of strokes, which hit him with a shock. "You call yourself a master swordsman?" He has experience enough to spot weakness. Her training is excellent but a little too rigid. Her attacks take a pattern. He blocks patiently then awaits a characteristic upward lunge with both blades - devastating

should he prove unwary - followed always by a vicious single swipe. He chooses this moment to counter, and manages at least one telling strike that sends her gasping. Recovery is swift. He blocks and repeats. At a moment he finds the fight going his way she strikes fast, slashing across his face. Though his reflexes are sharp he cannot take the sting from the blow and is cut deep, eyebrow to cheek. He reels back. "You bitch!" He flies at her in fury, and strikes hard. She recovers. They circle again. The girl lowers her sword in contempt as he retreats to catch his breath, slaps her hip with a blade, and taunts him. "You don't honestly believe you can defeat me?" He sets in to try again. They lock swords. He summons all his energy to force her back by degrees. "I grow tired of this," he says. "Is that the best you have to offer?" her reply. "Tell me when you're going to be ready to fight for real." Space on the bridge is limited, and the Prince moves cautiously about, holds his block and waits his chance to strike always at the same point in her rigid assault, though she now moves swiftly aside from his attack. At a moment he stumbles, she stamps with a heel, and stands waiting for him to regain his feet. Their swords lock a second time. "It seems the Empress overestimated your abilities." The Prince is momentarily distracted. "The Empress?" How could she know his intent? The girl takes swift advantage of his lapse in concentration. She knocks the weapon from his hand, clutches him by the throat and delivers a stunning blow, kicks him brutally to the head, and casts him contemptuously aside. He sinks to unconsciousness, her black-lipped sneer burned on his mind. "The Island of Time..." The Prince drifts in the current. Swirled in the depths of the ocean the memory of a voice comes to him. "...the place where the Sands were created. The place from which the Maharajah stole the Hourglass." In a tent in the desert wilderness the Prince takes counsel of a wise Old Man. "And what if I could reach this island?" the Prince asks. "They say the Maharajah found portals there," the Old Man goes on. "Where one could pass backwards through time." He reaches among his utensils with sightless eyes.

"Back through time?" the Prince wonders. "To the birthplace of the Sands..." The wizened face of the bearded Old Man frowns with foreboding as the Prince speaks. "Something terrible happened when our army traveled to the Maharajah's palace." In a flash of years before, the Prince recalls plunging the Dagger of Time into a mysterious hourglass. "You found the Sands of Time?" "Worse! I opened them." His mind is scarred with the memory of terrible demon ogres unleashed at the bidding of an evil Vizier when he was tricked into opening the hourglass and the Sands were released. "Whosoever shall open the Sands must die," recites the Old Man. "I was forced to kill those I fought beside. Those I had loved." "But now an unstoppable beast chases you." The Old Man unstops a flask. "For the first time in my life," the Prince looks to his mentor. "I am afraid." The wise mystic has no words of comfort. "And you will die." The Prince tries to explain. "I used the Sands themselves to reverse time, making it as if the Hourglass was never opened." In so doing, he has irreparably altered the true course of Time. "The beast - the Dahaka - is the guardian of the Timeline. You were supposed to die, so it will catch you and see to it that you meet your fate." He raises a hand to still the Prince, set to leave. The young man is determined, and speaks firmly. "It is better to try than to wait here for death." "Madness! Even if you manage to reach the Island, you'll still have to face the Empress of Time." "I will travel back in time and prevent the Sands from ever being made," the Prince reasons. "If there are no Sands, the Dahaka will have no quarrel with me." "Go then, my Prince, but know this: your journey will not end well. You cannot change your fate." The Old Man turns away. "No man can." -- WRECKAGE -------------------------------------------------------------

The Prince comes to lying on a rocky shore, pecked at by squawking black birds. He stands quickly and shrugs them away. All around in the gloom of dawn the wreckage of his ship is tossed in the surf, but no sign of his companions. Nor yet their attackers. As more birds threaten, he feels instinctively to his back. "My swords! Gone." He picks up a length of wood and strikes his tormentors. Each fades in a wild cawing flurry of feathers, and not only blood but also the curious yellow substance of sand. No ordinary wildlife this; he is in a cursed place of demons. Though strewn with spars and wreckage, the turbulent cove is devoid of life, but for more possessed crows which caw and circle to assail him. He wearily hacks them aside, and considers his lot. "My crew! All are lost. I will find the one who did this," his voice cracks with emotion, "and she will pay." Scattered on the shore is the wreckage of many ships, not just his own. Here too, as a warning perhaps, dismembered corpses strung on a gibbet. The cove is set into a cavern of rock. Waterfalls tumble to the shore. A broken walkway leads up. On steps at its foot, lit brands gutter in the wind. He moves to them, the only way off the shore. He negotiates gaps and ledges, works his way steadily upward. He passes a decorative stone basin where water flows as the tears of a maiden carved at its head. The clear fountain water is greatly refreshing. At a wall of split rock he dislodges nesting birds, which scatter but do not threaten him. He works meticulously around rocks and ledges, not risking a fall from these cliffs on a clumsy maneuver. He looks out on the cold misted ocean, wind and waves and the desultory flapping of dislodged birds the only sounds in this desolate place. He comes soon to solid stone walls of a fortress built into the rock. He must find a way in. At a gap between rock platforms he runs out on a wall, passes easily from one to the next - easily that is for the young agile Prince, but much beyond any lesser man. He comes to broken columns, part of another walkway still partially erected above. He clutches at the most slender and shuffles to its top, reaches back to another and on to the next. From his hold on the last column he jumps to grab on to the walkway, and pulls up. A thick tree trunk blocks up the way ahead, evidence of disuse of the walkway for very many years. Close by stand massive wooden gates. The foot of one gate has rotted out. He ducks and rolls through. "Stop the intruder!" a voice shouts, "He's the one the Empress wants dead." Enemies lie in wait, hideous horned creatures the same devilish spawn as the Pirate raiders, their words confirmation that this is the domain of the Empress of Time and these her willing servants. He engages swiftly, using his length of wood to batter one aside as he deals with the next. He steals a weapon from one and then turns to finish both. The Prince had not sought this confrontation, but with each enemy slain he took account of the lives of his murdered crew. Now inside the fortress walls there would surely be more sentries ready in wait. He clambers on stone blocks

to shallow steps, broken in front, to make his way further in. Wind howls. With another agile run along a wall he comes to a broken platform with a bigger gap beyond. Set about in niches in the fortress walls stand statues of knights in armor, one at his side now crumbled as ruinous vegetation takes hold. The gap ahead is crossed at a run with a leap backwards off it, to land face to face with more Raiders. "Let's finish him." Practice for his new sword. Tall gates stand open ahead. All seems quiet. He makes his way over blocks and stones to an iron gate that bars his way. Beside it a collapsed block, off which he climbs over the wall in front. On the other side of the gate, stone statues stand mute yet impressive. These appear to be of the Griffin, a mythical beast he had learned of in school, with the head and wings of an eagle and the body of a lion. What could be its significance here? Light breaks through the ceiling above and tree branches hook in. A door at one side is firmly shut. The Prince moves through a high arched doorway to gray light ahead. High in front of him stands the entrance to a mighty castle building. He is certain that his quarry has passed this way. "Come on, I know you're out there," the Prince mutters as he looks about. "Show yourself." Black boots step out nearby. "Where I come from," continues the Prince, "we face our opponents. And if our enemy is unarmed we offer them a sword." On this last he slashes quickly at the creeping figure of the girl in black behind, cuts her gasping to the ground. In a second, Raiders gather to her aid. She gets to her feet and commands them. "Kill him!" The first minion charges, yellow eyes burning with blind hate, and is knocked to the ground. The Prince steals its weapon and impales the wretch with it. Whirling through the air, he lashes out and the rest are dealt death in similarly gruesome style. The Prince turns to his now unprotected opponent. She gives a look of loathing and signals to a second wave of loyal servants as she makes her escape. Once more surrounded, the Prince readies his weapons. ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN S P I D E R S W O R D This ancient sword is common on the Island. ---------------------------------------------"He's no match for us." "Few can match blades with me," he warns.

Though at first sight outnumbered, the Prince executes dazzling moves upon the attackers as he sees fit, whirling and slashing, chopping and slicing, dealing decapitation and dismemberment until the last shriek. "Slaughtered," comments the Prince with some understatement. He sheaths his swords and looks around. He stands on a short ruined platform. Stunted vegetation gnarls the foot of broken steps that lead away to end abruptly in collapsed blocks. Much higher are seen the rest of the flight, at what must be the Fortress Entrance. He will have to work another way to get within. He returns inside to find a door now ajar, through which no doubt his craven quarry fled. He takes sustenance at a fountain basin. -- THE RUINED FORTRESS -------------------------------------------------The gray stone passage in which he stands is much damaged by time. The floor bears intricate decoration, now broken and ruined. He leaps first one gap and then another. In his way a small wooden rack, that when smashed reveals a useful weapon. He returns to the open through a doorway ahead. Evil black birds watch balefully, orange eyes aglow. At a squawk they rise to a dense flock and form themselves as an ungodly black-cloaked demon. It rises from one knee to flourish a sword. The Prince, undaunted, rushes to its challenge. On a narrow stone bridge, with circular decoration cracked at its center, the combatants clash. The Prince learns soon that this Crow Master is swift to block and swifter to strike. Though tall, it takes little effort for him to vault over, and it seems weakest then. It stumbles with a shocked shrill cry as he deals down a savage blow on its back. A flurry of dust and feathers rise. He repeats the move but the creature blocks. He tries again and gets through, and again it gasps and reels. He keeps up this leaping tactic, though it oftentimes blocks, and with persistence breaks through. The demon collapses and scatters as screeching birds. These flap wildly and rise in a furious cloud, then settle on a higher ledge, where as the Crow Master they reform. The Prince senses that on that very path his course lies, and searches about for some means to get up to it. As he moves away a thick watery voice echoes. "You'll need to try harder if you hope to best me." "Your time would be better spent seeking sanctuary," advises the Prince. "Run while you still can." The platform created by the broken floor allows no way forward. Steps in front lead only to a closed wooden gate. Twin columns stand at one side, too high to reach on their thick bases. At the side of his entrance a low wall rises to a ledge. An upward wall run and jump back bring him to a small platform formed by its canopy. The Prince looks across to broken walkways where the Crow Master waits. It seems almost to be showing him the way, daring him to come to it and face its challenge. Very well. The two slender columns are between them. The Prince runs out on the wall, leaps at a trail of ivy aligned to it, and catches the first column. With a swift shuffle round he grabs for the second, and straight from it, over bottomless depths to land on the walkway with its stern standing

obstacle. "So it's a fight you want?" the Prince shouts. "I can smell your fear from here." "Unfortunate that you have fallen so easily," returns the avian demon. "I find this display of weakness surprising." The narrow walkway is not the best battleground but a few timely attacks of downward slashes upon it bring the towering foe to a crumble of feathers and dust as before. Yet again it reforms to the black-cloaked figure on a higher ledge. "Rise up, Prince, let us continue this, I'm not finished yet." "I grow tired of this," he replies. "Why do you bother?" The Prince moves to it in determined pursuit. By a wall run to a block and another to return, he climbs ledges overhead, and on to a precarious hanging column. A last jump and he faces the Crow Master once more. "Do you see now how it's done?" it mocks. The Prince is unmoved. "I have faced far worse than the likes of you." He moves constantly, rolls at any attack and leaps in at first pause, not letting the Crow Master's mighty sweeps come under his guard to knock him off his feet. Still the demon taunts him. "I am sure you can do better than that." With but a little more exertion the Prince hacks at the Crow Master and lands a blow that cleaves the demon through. It dissipates once more, and this time he senses for good. There comes grudging respect even from this unholy creation for the skill of the Prince. A disembodied voice echoes: "It is an honor to die by your hand." The demon leaves behind an impressive sword, which the Prince eagerly snatches up. This combat has led him up to high ledges. Beside him is a barred gate. Broken steps downward lead nowhere and there is no obvious vantage point. On a wall nearby, a brightly colored square tile hints at a method by which the barred gate might open; a symbol upon it matches one on the gate. The Prince runs nimbly up over the tile. As he does so the tile illuminates. The pressure of his feet triggers a mechanism, and a hidden switch activates. The gate behind is now unlocked. He enters and looks down on a ruined chamber of ivy-covered walls and broken stone pillars. Raiders stand waiting on the floor. "Alert the others!" a voice commands, "Help me with this." To one side, a long red curtain reaches almost to the floor. In the manner he employed on the sail of his ship, the Prince runs out to it, strikes through the material with his sword, thus braking his descent, and slides smoothly down. Safe to the ground, he whirls into the waiting pack. The last beaten Raider groans as he falls.

"Forgive my failure." With the room now clear the Prince makes exploration. An impassible gap splits the stone floor ahead. No way through the doorway there from here, and no other exit. He sees up above a serviceable walkway that surely leads somewhere. A pillar to one side offers access. He runs up off a block at its base to grab hold of a ledge, shuffles to one side and hauls up on the walkway, covered in rubble and home to a Raider. He sees it off with scant exertion. "Others will rise to take my place," comes its dying threat. Very well, the Prince's thought. Come one, come all. He will be ready. The walkway ends abruptly, but he sees a ledge around a that he might reach by a wall run. Clinging on here, he the wall, over the misty depth of the impassable gap on Once round, he drops off to a niche and from there to a floor of a passage. pillar nearby shimmies around the floor below. block on the

This leads in pale light to a gap rent across it. He hears a mechanical squeak and sees below in the gap a spinning saw blade, grinding sparks. Although wary of its likely effect, it seems somehow stuck fast and he runs easily over to the other side of the gap. As he rounds a corner at a run, spiked poles rise from the floor with a hollow 'Clunk!' to surprise him, but likewise halt uselessly. These must once have been formidable defenses but were now crippled by decay. He looks on, to a bright shimmering doorway ahead. He approaches cautiously but sees that the sheen is nothing more harmful than a shower of water, and passes safely beneath. Lichen-filled basins of water stand either side of a short dank passage of arches and pillars. Leaves swirl in drafts, the ruined chamber where he stands is open to the skies. He steps warily forward. To either side, a pair of thick square pillars bear a tile with a distinctive blood red symbol. A thin stream of intensely glowing yellow liquid runs from each pillar to gullies in the stone floor, forming an intricate design ending in a spiral, where a vortex of light rises. As the Prince steps forward he is stopped in his tracks. The girl in black looks over her shoulder with a sly grin. He draws his weapon from his back and runs forward. She stands on the edge of a circular platform, an abyss beyond. There is nowhere for her to go, she cannot escape his sword this time. To his astonishment the girl is drawn into the air and appears suspended by some unknown force. She gives a moan of satisfaction. He runs to strike her with his sword but connects only with air. She is gone! "Madness!" he gasps, "What magic is this?" Sparkles of sand glitter. As he stands bewildered, his body is wracked by a spasm and he too is drawn up into a beam of glowing light. Before his eyes, the decay of time is rolled back. Clinging vegetation shrinks its clawing roots from broken pillars that resume to the full splendor of light and decoration as new. The beam of glowing energy released the Prince from its grip. As he fell to the floor and looked around, a boot kicked out to his head and knocked him down. The girl in black ran off.

---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN R E C A L L This power lets you turn back time to a period when you were safe ---------------------------------------------It seemed to be the same chamber room, but now very different. He could not explain it. No sign of ruin or decay, all brightly lit with candles and torches. He turned back between the four pillars, their tile symbols here brightly illuminated. Ahead lay the doorway with its curtain of water. He paused at a now pristine fountain basin and tried to make sense of the circumstance. "It seems I have discovered one of the time-traveling portals the Old Man spoke of." -- FIRST STEPS IN THE PAST ---------------------------------------------Whatever lay beyond this portal he must chase down the girl in black. She could explain this. He steeled himself and left the portal chamber through the curtain of water. Torches now lighted the passage beyond. Where daylight streamed before only thin rays penetrated at slits. As he rounded the first corner he heard traps spring into action. Here again were the twin spiked poles, now fully operational in their deadly intent, spinning back and forth across his path, raising dust as they whipped round and round. He stepped carefully by and found a second hazard at the turn. Wall blades had become active, buzzing relentlessly up and down either side of a pit of spikes. Across it, a Raider waited; it seemed that this Past bore no better welcome from its inhabitants than the Present he left behind. He observed each rise and fall of the saw blade and judged the moment to run over on the wall. The lone sentry offered little sport. With a few acrobatic jumps the Prince grabbed it and snatched its weapon, which he then tossed in its ugly face. "I can't beat him alone," groaned the dying creature. He came presently to a chamber of decorated pillars and high balconies. In its now complete state he could scarcely recognize it as the room he had entered by the hanging red curtain. What had been open to the skies was here fully roofed, the bottomless pit in front covered by stone floor. A number of Raiders waited on it. "Stop the intruder," one commanded, "Destroy him!" He moved swiftly, breaking their rash attack. At the center of the room was a short column that he could use to spin and slash as he went, and the many stone blocks and pillars proved useful as foundation for flying lunges. A weapon rack standing to one side was easily smashed, yielding a convenient projectile. He was learning new tricks and methods of dealing with the inhuman foe as he went, and relished each opportunity for combat.

"Honor and glory shall be ours," one creature declared. "You should be honored to die by my sword," he replied. When he had peace the Prince made further exploration. Opposite the door at which he entered was another, though solidly shut. To one side of the room was a screen of latticed arched windows but no way to the room beyond. A high wall switch caught his eye. He looked up around the balconies to find a route to it but saw no easy access. He remembered that he had once climbed up on a pillar, but there was no convenient fallen block to mount this time. Beside his entrance, a slender column looked easily climbable and proved so. He jumped back to a ledge on a pillar. Up on the balcony, a simple wall run brought him to a ledge around a square plinth, atop which sat another stern carved likeness of a Griffin. It seemed an important figure to whatever manner of inhabitants dwelt here. Around a short section of walkway beyond this he came to a sudden edge. The wall switch was set just beyond, a far distance from the ground below. Seeing a long hanging curtain an equal distance beyond gave him an idea. He took up his courage and ran out, over the switch, onto the curtain and down, his sword at the ready as before. He fell safe to the floor and ran quickly to the side and rolled under the now open gate. It clanged shut behind him. He was in the open once again. He looked up to leaden skies. Steps led down to a short bridge. By a circular design at its center he recognized it as the place he first encountered the Crow Master in his own time. He needed to keep his bearings. Intent on arriving at the Fortress Entrance he could not afford to wander aimlessly. An open doorway faced him; rotating spiked pole traps close within. A glance about showed two slender columns in the distance to one side, and a colonnade in the other. Looking up, he observed Raiders on a terrace above it pacing as sentries. He had no desire for unnecessary exertion. He made his way in past the fast spinning poles. Around a corner a similarly spinning spiked log rose and fell in a groove across his path. He chose his moment to tumble beneath and forward to a corner. Here, two more poles spun in opposition, at one point meeting then dividing, leaving sufficient space at that moment to dodge through. Such slight injury as clumsiness or hesitation had earned was soon mended in a draft out of a nearby water fountain. -- THE FORTRESS REBUILT ------------------------------------------------He ran on into the next passage. Guttural cries could be heard as from nowhere appeared two tall slender beings, gliding rapidly from side to side in black swirling clouds, of no greater substance than a mere silhouette. Should he stand at one place they cast short daggers, one on another, knocking him back in a multiple assault. Though he blocked with his sword, should he try to attack in an instant they vanished and reappeared nearby to assault him afresh. "I'm here, I'm there, I'm everywhere," one hissed. They could as easily glide straight through him, knocking him hard to the ground. To determine his strategy the Prince ran for such cover as he could find. "Poor Prince," came an echoing taunt. "Seems you're just out of reach."

He didn't take kindly to having deadly objects thrown at his person. Choosing a moment when the assault died down, he stepped into view and hurled his own secondary weapon. It cartwheeled through the air and caught a direct hit on one ghastly apparition. With a choked gurgle its head parted from its shoulders. The other redoubled its efforts. "Just like your own shadow, Prince, you'll never be free of me." Finding the numbers now more to his liking, the Prince dashed forward to strike with his sword. He landed a few heavy blows that made their mark but the hellish creature was swift. "Don't you know, Prince?" it mocked, "You can't kill a shadow." A furious hail of blades caught the Prince unawares and he retreated to the safety of the passage once again. Here was a weapon rack, which he split with his sword to claim another blade. He hurled this at the second shadowy foe and as with the other the touch of flying steel proved enough. It similarly collapsed and disappeared in a puff of foul dust. The Prince claimed a blade from the trace left behind. These Silhouettes had been set to guard access to a steep flight of steps. The Prince fancied them somewhat familiar, and as he looked up he saw the magnificent fortress, its gates now wide open. Proud banners fluttered all down either side. He had reached his goal, now accessible. He was certain the girl in black was already within, and certain too that she would lead him to her mistress, the Empress of Time. Eagerly he made his way up, hearing soon angry voices. "Help me with this." Then another, shouting: "Finish him!" Raiders swarmed down the steps to repel the invader. He engaged the frontrunners and heard as he fought the familiar harsh roar of a shadow creature such as the two he had recently defeated. To his satisfaction, in its blind rage to assault the Prince with showers of knives, this apparition was as likely to damage any Raider between. With this unwitting assistance he soon cleared them all, and in a moment cast a spare weapon to the direction of the raging Silhouette, slicing it to extinction at first touch. In triumph he entered the mighty fortress. Up a flight of steps he encountered a vicious sword trap. A blade sprang from a rotating drum, swishing at a height and a rate that required a judicious wall run or a tumble roll beneath to pass safely. At its reach, a deadly pit of spikes. The Prince jumped expertly to a ledge on the other side, and up to another, though broken. From this he reached up to a third, and passed hand over hand along the wall at its extent, dust crumbling at his fingers. He dropped down upon other ledges to a leap back to a parallel passage. A lone Raider was made aware of the folly of standing in his way. This passage housed two more rotating drum blades, quite easily passed under at a roll or above on the wall close beside. He looked around the last corner to a vast room beyond. This was the Central Hall to the fortress of the Island of Time. Light came from windows set high above, and too from a dozen flickering bowls of yellow fire suspended from the ceiling on long chains, swaying in the light breeze about the vast open space. Towering pillars flanked sculpted niches, a spout of water pouring steadily at the center of each. A large doorway faced his entrance, and others could be seen set into the walls either side, albeit with no obvious means of access. Huge blocks of stone

were set round about an irregular central platform, cracked and ruined. On this paced a number of Raiders. "Stop the intruder!" A repeated command: "He's the one the Empress wants dead." Now very well practiced, the Prince finished them easily and examined the platform on which he then stood alone. At its center was a shallow circular niche, a smaller circular depression inside. On two sides of this were set carved motifs, one a depiction of a gear cog and the other what might have been the symbol of water. Their significance could not be guessed. Flanking this decoration, four slender columns rose to the ceiling high above. These were bound on the floor by a decorative edge that reached back to a curious device; a small stone sculpture that had the appearance of a rose. The Prince observed a slot at its crown. Again, speculation as to its purpose would have been fruitless. He hopped over a gap to the large doorway. Through bars he saw stairs protected by traps. He would have to find some way to pass within but the gates here were as yet firmly shut. After refreshment at a water fountain beside, he returned to the central platform. He looked over the edge. Mist rose from the bottomless depths. At one side an initially promising set of tall column blocks proved too difficult to climb. A second set at the opposite edge gave easier access. Turning to the slender columns at the center of the platform, from this height he jumped easily one to the next to land atop the first set of tall blocks. At this level he could see a balcony over the door he had entered. Another doorway led off it. A wall run and leap back brought him standing before it. A guard Raider ran silently forward to meet his death. At a corner inside, spinning spiked poles broke his rhythm only a little across a series of spike pits. The Prince dropped into the floor at the passage end. A ladder led him to a waiting Raider, unprepared it seemed for attack from above. Twin poles ground up and down to a spike pit ahead but the Prince passed easily over them. Again, the small effort belied the impossibility of passage that another man might face. A ladder at a drop presented the minor obstruction of sweeping spiked logs in his path but he slid down at a carefully judged moment. Though Raiders came now in pairs he was yet undeterred. "I have more important matters to attend to," he declared. Through the following passage, light curls of smoke tumbled from a hanging bowl overhead to lick about the floor. Partly obscured, the Prince did not notice rows of small holes set into the stone tiles under his feet as he stepped forward. Puffs of dust rose, and at a moment steel blades shot out from each hole. He picked up his feet to run fast in front, each deadly trap sprung by his tread, yet not swift enough to catch him as he ran on. He steadied his nerve at a water basin safe beyond reach of the last row of tiles. -- CHASING THE GIRL IN BLACK -------------------------------------------Before him the passage led on, with more telltale spike traps laid across the floor and a spiked log grinding up and down at the middle. He ran as surely as before and tumbled beneath, rolling on to a turn in the passage. Here, groaning back and forth, a whole series of spiked poles, which at a cautious dash he slipped in between, to arrive at an open

doorway. In a large room of tall pillars beyond, the girl in black ran off at his approach. Weapons in hand she stopped in a far doorway, looked back to the Prince with a raised eyebrow and a mocking smile, then disappeared through a then firmly shut gate. Very high above it the Prince saw a hanging lever. The girl's running footsteps receded. "I'd best find that woman," thought the Prince, walking out on a platform into the room. "She's probably gone for reinforcements." Such reinforcements were already at hand. As the Prince stepped forward unaware, a Raider hid flat behind a nearby pillar. Another crept up onto the platform edge. The Prince sensed the danger, but was first faced by a cruel caricature female creature dropping beside him, dressed in crimson and armed with a slicing ring of sharpened steel. This hellcat danced acrobatically about the Prince as he turned to fight her away, and gleefully took first opportunity to fling her legs about his neck as she dealt him a vicious swipe with her blade. "Pain is exquisite," she mocked. "I commend you." The brutal Raiders clubbed him as he stumbled under her attack, and these were joined in their murderous endeavor by a gliding Silhouette, flinging its blades in volleys as before. The Prince found it not unhelpful to place a slow-witted enemy between himself and this assailant, that its weapons might find other targets. He concentrated on turning to strike the Blade Dancer where she appeared swiftly beside him. He needed to be quick to match her direction. "I'm not here to hurt you," she lied, with a pout. "Can't we talk this out?" He had few words to exchange but his blade spoke for him. At length he gained peace from all. He ran first along the carpeted platform to the door through which the girl in black vanished. Firmly shut though with the fortress symbol upon it. There had to be a corresponding switch somewhere. He looked upwards, at a network of balconies and high ledges. Perhaps that hanging lever up there? There seemed no better alternative. To one side of his platform a low block gave first means of access. Reaching up, he grabbed hold of a metal bar and set himself on a swing, reaching out to clutch onto a higher bar. From this he moved hand over hand to face a platform balcony. A Raider hurried from an alcove, where bars dropped behind, to wait his arrival. Swinging swiftly across, the Prince removed that small obstacle with a curt instruction. "Return from where you came." The passage off this balcony was indeed barred shut but a thin stone beam led off to another platform. The Prince balanced out carefully along it. Ahead waited more Raiders. One urged its confederate to action. "Let's get this over with quickly." "A human!" the other agreed. "No match for us." The Prince was not minded to argue.

Once cleared, he found this platform balcony similarly barred at its entrance, and made use of more metal bars and a wooden jetty to ascend to another above it. Though seemingly empty, as the Prince jumped onto this higher balcony he was joined by a Blade Dancer. The Prince exercised some little restraint in analyzing her unwelcome advances. She was truly swift in dealing her attack, which was at least easily blocked. The Prince found she was even swifter in changing position when he moved to strike back. Again and again he found himself slashing at air, till he learned to match her acrobatic leaps with a sudden change of his own, cutting behind him as soon as he turned, catching her unaware on her landing. Of no use whatever his own tactic of vaulting a likely opponent, since she simply blocked and cast him on his back at every attempt. With patience and timing he soon got the better of her. With a moment to reflect he looked about. He was now at the very height of the room and once again a possible exit was barred. There was no other way on but to hang over the side of the balcony rail to leap off to a slender arch beam. He grappled onto it, sending dust showering to the floor far below. Once again he balanced precariously along to face a matching corner balcony, this being not unexpectedly guarded. At least, he could see that a Raider waited on it, but was perhaps taken slightly off guard by the Silhouette that appeared in a flash to assist. Both were soon given equal dispatch. A hanging red banner gave the only means of departure off this high balcony, it being as solidly barred as the rest. He deftly hopped over the edge, to jump back onto the banner and begin his ingenious descent, though he had to be mindful of a long gap to the floor on its ending. He leaped off at a point to come safe to a deserted platform below. As with the others, a slender beam led off it. On this one a Blade Dancer dropped swiftly to challenge his progress. Blade drawn, she slid along the beam towards him. "Poor Prince," she murmured seductively. "Come to me." He could easily resist the Siren call but he came to her anyway, that he might deal a lethal blow. "Ah, you like the pain, don't you? Come closer, Prince," she commanded. "I want to taste my victory." As he balanced his way out on the beam, the Blade Dancer sprang lightly towards him. This was the domain of the gymnastic harlot and he was at a severe disadvantage. Though he attempted to block, she slashed swiftly and the Prince fell aside, clutching desperately to the edge of the beam. The Blade Dancer somersaulted away, enjoying her sport. "Oh yes, this position suits you," she purred. "Submit!" He scrambled back up, ready to match her this time. As she sprang forward he jumped up in an acrobatic move of his own, avoiding her slash, and came down and slashed back. Catching her off guard he connected and she sailed off the beam and vanished in a haze of sandy dust. This lesson could prove useful; he sheathed his blade in satisfaction and moved on. Balancing to the end of the long beam he ran off to a platform. Another Blade Dancer appeared. "Don't you know not to strike a woman?" Indeed he did, yet these vile caricatures had only the appearance of feminine form. He struck away. Still the wicked creation poured cruel

innuendo. "I commend you," she moaned. "There's so much pleasure in pain." He had heard enough. Turning each time to meet her direction, he dealt on the vile travesty of a woman a succession of blows. Color drained from her body, now shrouded in thin trails of sand. On a few more she was gone. The Prince hurried to reach on a low jetty overhead. Dust fell as he scrambled on top, then flung himself sideways to another. In a similar display of acrobatics as before, he jumped sideways off a wall and up to a third. To one side a last balcony, like the others at opposite corners very high above the ground. He leaped to it. A Silhouette materialized, supported by another Blade Dancer. He had the measure of them both and these were soon gone. Off this balcony was a rounded arch, with a barred gate, which although partly broken was solidly in place. Behind it the Prince noted a decorative wooden crate. An unusual object to be so well protected behind bars of steel so high above the ground. Standing there for a moment the Prince observed thin vapor tumbling from above. Looking up he saw an arched entrance in one wall in the space above, but no means whatever to reach it. He marked the spot, somehow certain of its significance. He saw close by the hanging lever he had spotted from the ground, and decided to deal with that first. Once more a nimble hop from the balcony rail had him hanging with his back to a decorative beam. He sprang backwards and clambered up. In a second another Blade Dancer confronted him. He performed his 'jump up and slash down' routine and got full marks for execution. He balanced out to the lever. Standing at the prow of a jetty midway along the beam, he reached up to activate it. Directly below, the door the girl in black had taken opened at his weight. Dropping off, he jumped ahead to a very long hanging curtain and sailed to the ground to stand before the open door. In triumph he made his way through. A stone staircase led down to a drop into a murky spike pit. A trap for the unwary perhaps but of little concern to him. A convenient hanging banner allowed him to slip down to a point where he leaped off to a stone jetty. Catching his balance on this he made a short jump to another, and crossed to a third on the wall opposite. Motes of dust hung in the dank fetid air. He jumped off a last jetty to a floor of spike tiles, on which dust stirred as blades readied to sprout. Too late to impede the nimble Prince. He ran on to take refreshment at a fountain. -- A DAMSEL IN DISTRESS ------------------------------------------------Bright lanterns beckoned him up a short staircase through a low doorway ahead. On his first steps he saw, high above, a retracting stone platform. Upon it stood a sinister figure, garbed in black and carrying a sword, staring down at him as it was carried out of sight. As he considered this, the Prince heard the clash of steel and sounds of a struggle. He hurried up the steps. On a raised platform at the center of the room two women fought hand-to-hand. It was the girl in black, locked in combat with a beautiful female with long black hair and green eyes, dressed nearly in red flowing gown slashed to the thigh, and high boots. She gripped her attacker in a desperate embrace and looked to the Prince.

"You," her entreaty, "Help me!" The Prince did not know what to make of the struggle but he still had a score to settle with the girl in black. "It is as they say: 'The enemy of my enemy is my friend.'" As he made his decision the woman in red was thrown off the platform, tumbling with a cry as she clung to the edge. A black leather boot poised to grind down on the hand of the helpless woman. "Leave her alone!" cried the Prince. "You and I have unfinished business." The cruel vixen turned with a sneer. Seeing her about to stamp down, the Prince rushed forward to draw her away. "You have two choices," she warned him, "Run or die." The third alternative to hand, the Prince laid in a few strokes then backed off, too well aware of her lightning response. The she-devil dealt out towards him her familiar combination of strokes. "I am not impressed," the Prince responded. He took his moment again, after her double raised thrust and single slash, to reply. "This is just the beginning," she assured him. "Flee while it's still an option, fool." Again she spanked her hip with the flat of her blade in a mocking gesture. "I have no time for this," he said. He leapt in at his chosen moment, sending her back in a fury. "Is this the best you have to offer?" she spat. They locked as before with blades at each other's throat. Finding her surprisingly strong, the Prince summoned all his strength to force her back. "You call yourself a master swordsman?" "Dust to dust," he replied. "This is going to hurt you far more than it's going to hurt me." Yet he must keep his wits sharp. She had added a dangerous trick to her repertoire since last they had fought. Once able to block her attack at his leisure, the Prince now found that should he stand close, the girl kicked suddenly with the full force of her boot, sending him skating backwards across the surface of the platform, winded at its edge. He knew he could not long sustain that much damage. With her bothersome interruption subdued, the girl turned her attention back to her female prey. The Prince shook himself together to rush to her aid, drawing the attacker away yet again. He kept respectful distance

now, ready to flip backwards as the powerful kick came, and was swift to lunge in as she left herself open. They locked weapons once more. The Prince could sense he had the advantage, and threw her off again. Yet she was contemptuous as ever. "Tell me when you're going to be ready to fight for real." "I grow tired of this," he responded. "You aren't worth my time." Again they circled, she clanging and striking her sword to the ground at his feet, tempting him to a rash move. He held firm, warily watching for that deadly blow off her boot while blocking her furious two-sword assault. He jumped over her then, knocking her back. For the third time they locked. The girl now screamed out in fury. "You have no place on this island. Do you really think you can defeat me?" "You'll have to do better than that," he suggested as he resumed the attack. "I will not allow you to stand in my way." Bit by bit he wore her down. On a sudden blow she reeled backwards. "How?" she panted furiously, "How can this have happened?" As the savage girl was thrown to the floor he raised his sword high and them plunged it hard down, driving her clean through. The weapon fell from her black-gloved hand. He stood for a moment and thought of what he had done. Her life or his. A cry from the woman still hanging from the edge brought him to his senses. He hurried to her, grasped her arms and pulled her to safety. With no word of thanks she stalked off. "Wait!" he called after her. "Please, I must speak with you." "What do you want from me?" "I seek an audience with the Empress." With a hollow laugh she replied, "The Empress meets with no one. Who do you think you are?" "I am the Prince of Persia." She considered this, arms akimbo. "I see." Then announced, "Today is a very important day. She cannot be disturbed." "I don't think you understand how important this is." From the bloody floor nearby, the mortally wounded girl in black stirred. "Fool!" she said. "Don't you know?" The woman in red and the Prince stood transfixed at the painfully forced words. "You cannot change your fate." In a flash of yellow light, the girl collapsed and disappeared. Shielding

his eyes, the Prince turned from the woman now clinging to him. "'You cannot change your fate'... Was she speaking to me?" he wondered. "How could she know my mission?" At that moment a part of the ceiling gave way, creaking and crumbling from the shock of the energy explosion on the girl in black's demise. Masonry and dust rained down, blocks crashed to the platform beside them. As a larger section of the roof collapsed, they moved as one. "Watch out!" the Prince yelled, flinging the woman aside. She cried out, masonry falling between them, knocking out the stone steps. Dust cleared. "Stay there!" the Prince called down. "I will find my way to you." "No, Prince," she coolly replied. "Leave this place and never return. The Empress has no love for the world of men. She will kill you if she learns of your presence." She walked away, leaving the Prince to consider all that he had seen. He followed a trail of dried blood up nearby stone steps to a candlelit rotunda, and noticed upon the floor there a grooved channel leading down to the platform below. By its color and appearance the groove seemed at one time to have been filled with blood. He realized with horror that this entire structure was a Sacrificial Altar to some unknown purpose. Up here was a sculpted block with a metal bar on it that might serve as a handle. He gave his weight to the bar and dragged the block backwards along the groove. A door rumbled behind. He went to investigate. Down a narrow flight of stone steps he came on a passage. At the far end he observed two spiked poles grinding back and forth in opposition across his path. Set into the floor leading up to them, a carpet of hidden spike traps. Should he align himself with one wall and wait for the nearest pole to touch the opposite wall, he judged that he could run across at that very moment. The pole seemed to travel to meet him but moved away as his dash across the sudden sprouting spikes brought him safely past. Without pause he slipped past the second pole before it too returned. He looked now along a similar passage of spike traps. In this, a horizontal spinning log rolled relentlessly upwards and down almost to the floor. A turret sword swished just beyond. The Prince began his run as the log neared the bottom of its travel, his dash close to one wall bringing him safely beneath and ready to tumble expertly under the sword as it slashed close over his head. He caught his breath at the safety of a corner. Such fiendish devices as these had surely been set to guard something very special, and he was determined to discover what it might be. The next hazard was a spinning saw blade midway along a spike pit, which the Prince crossed with a wall run timed as the blade passed near halfway down. As he landed the Prince executed a roll, passing over another spiked floor and under a rotating blade. Taking a second pause for breath in a corner he saw now a large symbol, dimly glowing red on a far wall at the darkened end of the passage. That surely was his goal, and the sequence of deadly traps an impossible obstacle to it for all not so daring or agile as he. Yet still he was not there. A spiked pole moved towards him over an inevitable carpet of spike tiles. The Prince readied himself on its approach and followed it over the traps. As these started to sprout, he tumbled and tumbled, passing under the moving log and a second one vertically scything behind. He sustained but slight injury in this.

With a certainty he could not explain, he knew what he had to do. The Prince carried on his leather breastplate an Amulet (a precious gift), waiting only sufficient charge from a mysterious force to unlock its power. He snapped it from its mount and placed it on a recess at the center of the red glowing device, seemingly made for that purpose. The configuration of the device changed in mechanical operation. The Prince retrieved his Amulet, which pulsed in brilliant radiance. As he snapped it back to his breastplate a fiery ball of energy swept him up, holding him locked in its grip, his back arched, hands held outstretched, eyes aglow with intense blue light. He was wracked with a sudden spasm and dropped to a ring burst of light, at which he became released, unharmed. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------The Prince stood before the symbol, the strange device now glowing dull red at its core. Wisps of vapor curled about him. He could not comprehend what had happened but he felt his energies renewed, strength fully recovered. He prepared himself for the perilous journey back past the traps in the passage, but as he turned to leave, the legion of deadly devices behind him became inactive, the logs retracting into the walls, the sword drums to the floor, and the spike tiles no longer triggered by the pressure of his feet. Their purpose defeated, these deadly traps no longer had cause to guard what lay beyond. He returned gratefully along the now silent passage to the Sacrificial Altar. The falling masonry had created a platform on one side, which he mounted to face a wall pillar with thin decorative ledges. Jumping easily to one, he edged around a squared pillar to see a metal pole protruding from one wall. He swung easily from this to another wall pillar, with another ledge, off which he jumped back to the first. With his athletic ability he seemed always to navigate a sure route beyond any obstacle. Though broken on top by the recent destruction, the ledge around this pillar held firm as he edged to another wall pole, a second directly above. An agile bound off a wall saw him hanging from this, where he made sure to twist his body to face the direction of a last pillar top, that he might grasp a firm hold and not spin fatally to thin air. On this high pillar top he glanced up to see a rope hanging against the wall just above his head. He reached to grab its end. Using this rope to set himself swinging as a pendulum he gained enough momentum to release and run across the wall to grab a stone jetty further along. Dust crumbled but it held firm. From this he jumped down to find a basin at which to refresh himself. -- FATE'S DARK HAND ----------------------------------------------------He came to the end of a broken walkway. He was still some distance from the vaulted ceiling, and looked down to the altar far below. He dropped to a broken stone beam just beneath, and made a bold leap to the matching part of it, where a flaming lantern on a chain hung under. On one wall between was set a very large carved symbol, which he had begun to recognize at intervals everywhere, a motif of triangles carved in a nearly closed circle. He moved on around column ledges to balance out on

the thin edge of a carved stone animal whose mouth served as a spout to send water pouring to the depths below, as various spouts did about the room everywhere. He jumped back to a wall pillar with another thankfully solid ledge. A wall bar served as an intermediate to another carved waterspout, and a ledge with a niche in the wall above allowed him to shimmy to a high balcony. Over a block plinth against the wall was another rope, which he climbed fully to turn and face a hanging lever. Jumping to it caused two tall wooden shutters on the wall nearby to close. He realized they had else blocked his path. Setting himself at a swing, he returned with a jump to the hanging rope. He slid down and back to the platform beneath. Looking to one side he could easily run across the now closed shutters and reach another stone platform beyond. Here hung another rope, and the Prince used it to swing this time to a walkway. Candlelit recesses and a flickering torch in a stand lit a rank of spike tiles set in one corner. Above these a wall switch. It seemed to serve little purpose, merely activating the wickedly sharpened spikes beneath, which thankfully receded on his landing. He made his way into a nearby chamber and no sooner had the chance to ponder its emptiness than a redgarbed Blade Dancer swooped down close behind him, followed swiftly by another and another and another. Taken unawares the Prince barely shook them back before he was surrounded and at risk of terrible punishment from their lightning attack. An idea struck him then and he moved quickly outside and onto the spiked tiles. The stealthy assassins appeared beside him and gathered close to deal their devil's handiwork as he had anticipated, and with a brisk run up over the wall switch then every one was skewered in a flash. He gathered the power of their residual Sand and with grim satisfaction headed back inside the now silent chamber. This was an octagonal space, set with pillared alcoves. Glancing up, the Prince saw the light of a high exit and bars across the width of the room that might lead to it. Ledges on one wall gave access to these. Swinging from one to another, he turned about and up to a third. He swung easily through a section of open wall. He was in a short featureless platform room, a few pots scattered to one side as elsewhere through the fortress. He recognized on the floor in front of him spike trap tiles, and ran quickly forward to a wall and up to the safety of a ledge. Another above gave height to jump backwards to a bar, where turning once again he rebounded off the wall to spring up to another. Turning yet again, he jumped off to a ledge. Creaking and groaning above his head in its relentless course was a spiked log. The Prince shuffled to one corner as far as he could go and judged he might leap to a second ledge at the same height behind him against one wall. This lay directly under the sweep of the spiked log. He timed exactly his moment and scrambled to his feet on the ledge, where without hesitation he jumped backwards and grabbed the narrow ledge just barely as the spinning log returned. He dropped swiftly beneath it and shuffled to safety the other side. Here the passage continued, bright lit and crudely decorated with a frieze of ancient figures. Around a corner a deep pit, its wall protected by a familiar buzzing saw blade. He ducked beneath as he ran out to grab hold of a convenient hanging rope. A second rope on the opposite side of the pit was easily reached off it. Lowering himself to the very end of this, the Prince judged that he could work enough distance and momentum to run off to the end of the spike pit, with the minor consideration of a second buzzing blade in his path. He ran out on its upward travel and

passed safe beneath. After this he thought little of traversing the course of four spiked spinning poles, two of which were at station and two traveled. He slipped easily between with the slightest pause. Ahead he saw the bright sheen of water such as he had found at the doorway to a portal chamber when in pursuit of the girl in black. As he might have hoped, at his entrance through this the Prince discovered a separate chamber of identical design. He noticed immediately that glowing liquid did not flow from any pillar. The floor spiral was dark. "The portal no longer works!" he realized. "Something is wrong." He needed to restore the flow of molten sand to the spiral at the center of the portal, and to do that he had to reset the pillar switches. He had come to recognize the square tiles with the distinctive symbol as switches, be they set into the floor or high on a wall as these were. He knew the means to trigger them and found it less of an effort than an ordinary man would, yet as the Prince ran up over one switch it flickered briefly but did not seem to activate. He tried another. This stayed fully lit and a thin stream of liquid poured into the channel at his feet. He tried the next. Alas, this merely flickered as the first and now he found that the previous switch had returned to dark. He reset it and followed with a different switch. This lit up and the first switch remained illuminated. It was clear that the four switches had to be set in sequence, and any deviation would cause the sequence to be reset and need starting again. A little trial and error found the right order to keep all four switches lit, and on this he observed a very river of white-hot sand flow from each column and along grooved channels in the floor to the spiral out on the platform. He ran to its eye. Vision blurred. All around the chamber grew darkness and decay, as thick rooted vegetation gripped pillars and covered walls, which fell instantly to ruin. The work of years in a few passing seconds. ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN E Y E O F T H E S T O R M This power slows down time for everything except you. You gain a speed advantage for a few seconds ---------------------------------------------Released from the grip of the Time vortex, the Prince falls to his feet. The portal chamber is gray and decayed, its decoration withered, roof open to the night sky. Steam rises from the still flowing sand in the spiral of the platform, wall switches are still aglow. All else is ruin, though water yet runs in basins near the portal entrance. He heads to the door, satisfied that he has returned to his own time. "Good, I seem to be back in the Present. At least I know how these portals work." Through the curtain of water, the passage beyond has been rebuilt in an unfamiliar configuration. Fresh traps are evidently very much active: hidden spike tiles and two spinning poles. He passes easily at the right moment and edges onto a thin wall ledge. He drops down to another and

moves around a narrow passage, drops to a block platform and wall runs to another. Here he descends ledges to the floor. Rubble lies strewn about, and through a broken wall he sees a switch on the floor with a familiar blood red symbol upon it. It sets open a door at the end of the passage here, yet as he runs to go through it, the door grinds shut. Try as he may the Prince cannot get there in time. A thought strikes him. His treasured Amulet has long been filled with as much sand as it can hold; yet until his visit to the hidden device off the Sacrificial Altar in this place in the Past, it held no power. Perhaps his passage through the Time portal has bestowed a residual effect? He steps on the floor switch once more and indeed, at a press of a button he summons the Eye of the Storm. Time slows to a crawl but the Prince moves swift as ever. He races along the passage and dives under the closing door before the effect wears away. In the short passage beyond stand two Raiders, unaware of the whirlwind bearing down on them. They move in slow motion, powerless to defend the blows raining down on them. As Time reverts its normal course, the pair are vanished to yellow dust. "How can this happen?" a dying complaint. "You should have fled when you had the chance." The Prince looks down through a hole to the room below. All seems quiet. He drops down. On a sudden noise he ducks down behind a block. At a barred wall across the room appears a demonic creature of deepest black, huge and hideously horned, its eyes holes of burning white light. With a roar it smashes effortlessly through the wall, blasting the bars and the blocks they are set in to the floor far below. The beast scans ominously about the room. Seeing nothing, it departs. The Prince rises to his feet. What manner of creature is this? The Old Man spoke of an unstoppable beast, the Dahaka, guardian of the Timeline. Was that what he had seen? He had best take care but he would not be swayed from his course. He must find again the woman in red. Through her he might gain an audience with the Empress of Time. He runs out on a wall to a stump of branch that has rooted from a crack. He jumps to a second and from there to a rope that hangs on a wall. He drops to its end, sets himself on a swing and jumps to a pole from the wall, on to a branch, then ahead to a stone platform. A jetty off this gives on to a straight sturdy branch, which he just barely clutches to drag himself up. Though nearly overbalancing he makes a leap to a pillar at the center of the room. He clings and shimmies to put his back to a long decorative banner off a matched pillar facing. He slips easily down with assistance of his blade, sure to spin off before its end where he lands on a twisted metal strut. At floor level the Prince sees a number of Raiders, as yet unaware of his approach. He jumps to a twisted branch not far over their heads, and a few careful shuffles and a leap bring him to a platform close by. "Stop the intruder!" a harsh instruction calls. Others have tried and others failed, as the Prince knew these must. He leaps to a lower platform where the Raiders crowd around. As he lays in with his sword, Blade Dancers drop swiftly to bolster the attack and he is nearly overwhelmed.

"Destroy him," one cries. "You have no place on this island." He moves quickly, spreading his attack to the most pressing target but this is hard combat and no sustenance to hand. He summons once more the Eye of the Storm. All enemies are slowed to a blur; the Prince moves one to another and finishes all. "Taste my blade," he offers. Yet on a moment two more leaping assassins descend. "You have two choices," instructs one. "Run or die." He decides there is a third option and hits the demonic gymnasts hard. One vanishes to blood and dust, the other circles near. The Prince flings his smaller weapon to catch the creature off balance then bounds forward to slash it to silence. "Pain is exquisite," she moans. "I commend you." Eager to please, the Prince deals out more. The platform clear, he moves on. A block ledge brings him to the foot of a pillar and an apparent halt. Looking up, he sees a cranny he might grab on to if he can rise up to it. He prepares for exertion and runs up to gain momentum and jumps back off the wall. At the instant his feet touch the pillar he jumps back to the wall, and then back to the pillar, and back to the wall, rising a little on each jump. He grabs the cranny and hangs, catching his breath. A backwards leap sees him clinging to the wall a little higher, then he is off once again, back and forth between pillar and wall like a chimney, rising to grab hold of a decorative edge on the pillar near its top. He moves around the pillar, not looking down, and springs off to a long branch that pokes from the wall. He now faces the hole rent by the Dahaka. He must face the unknown and follow in its step, there being no other exit from the room of perilous jumps. A leap to a ledge just beneath the blasted hole and he is in. A water basin offers the chance for full refreshment. If that beast is after him, the Prince will surely need all his abilities. He looks in the direction taken by the creature but finds only damage and a dead end to the passage. At the other, a leap over a pit and the Prince is on a balcony walkway outside. The ground shakes ominously. "The Dahaka!" the Prince's first instinct. "It has found me here." In the passage behind him, the terrifying beast reappears. It advances with menace. "Where is he?" its distorted voice seems to demand. The Prince takes to his heels. He runs along the open walkway, which crumbles as heavy footsteps pound close behind. Leathery tentacles snake through the solid stone walls as he passes, and reach ever closer. The walkway has crumbled ahead but the Prince runs over the gap without pause. Stone slabs slip to the floor behind as he lands on a last section, turns to jump out on a pole, and on to another and another and

off through the air. He lands hard on a stone platform, and stumbles across, looks back to his pursuer. With an angry roar it takes off towards him, springing as a ball of fury to land hard on top. The Prince dives at the last moment with a frantic wail, falls headlong through a small gap to a passage where the Dahaka crashes mightily behind but cannot reach. Temporarily safe, the Prince hurries on. Barrels scarcely block his way through a darkened passage. An open skylight, ceiling overgrown. A flight of steps and a turn bring a meeting with a lone sentry, watching for an intruder from outside it seems, not within. The Prince comes quietly behind and decapitates the worthless creature. He hops down to a balcony overlooking the rugged rock of the fortress foundations. A daring run out on a wall and a leap off it bring the Prince to a tall barley-cane fluted column. He climbs until he can leap off to another balcony. A waterfall nearby plunges to unseen depths. From the balcony he looks down on the place where he first met the Crow Master. He is nearing his goal. Through an arched entrance is a metal walkway, and the Prince surveys a familiar room at a higher level. He fought Raiders when last he came through but now it is deserted. He runs off at one side to a hanging red curtain, and slips down it to the floor. As on his previous visit, the way forward is to ascend a crumbling pillar and cross a rubble-strewn walkway for a wall run to a ledge. He negotiates the broken wall by hanging off it and shimmying under. He drops down to the passage inside. At this the Dahaka appears in the room he just left. The Prince takes off at a run again, down the passage to the portal chamber. The Dahaka pounds in pursuit. Without pause the Prince scampers across the gap in the floor and on around the corner. With an involuntary wail he throws himself through the portal doorway as leathery tentacles reach. The Dahaka lets out an enraged roar and instantly withdraws its tentacles from the touch of water, and bellows in fury at a standstill beyond. "What's this?" the Prince realizes. "It cannot cross the water..." A flowing curtain stream protects this portal doorway, as the other, across its entirety. The Prince is grateful for some small advantage. "This is certain to come in handy." The portal is still active. He runs forward along the glowing rivulet and steps onto the spiral at the end of the platform. As before he is borne into the air and suspended as Time becomes distorted. In a flare of brilliant light the ruined walls and columns return to their former glory as decay and sinewy vegetation shrink back and disappear. The Prince landed to ground and found himself once more in a pristine Past. -- A HELPING HAND ------------------------------------------------------He turned to the doorway, thoughts grim. "I have managed to lose the Dahaka - for now. Best I stay alert, it will return. It always does." Magenta drapes of transparent gauze drifted softly, lit by slow swinging brass lanterns hung from the ceiling. Through the curtain of water the Prince hastened to his planned rendezvous with the woman in red.

As he hurried down the now brightly lit passage beyond, he heard once again the twin sliding pole traps activate, and duly slowed to slip between them. Around a corner the spinning wall blades, as easily passed over as before. There seemed no enemy Raiders in sight. He came soon to the room of pillars and balconies. It was a vestibule of some kind between the outside and the fortress within. As he entered he came face to face, through bars into a room beyond, with the spectral masked figure in black that had stared down at him from the retracting platform above the Sacrificial Altar. It appeared startled at his appearance, and snatched a weapon to hand. Up close it looked more sinister yet, its garb nebulous tendrils that seemed to flow about its body. He held its eye uncertain. "What kind of beast is this?" A savage one it seemed, as wordlessly, eyes aglow with an eerie light, it hurled an axe towards him. He ducked on reflex as the missile spun close by his shoulder. In an instant the creature made off. A narrow escape. With no means of pursuit the Prince turned instead to the slender pillar by the door where he entered, and nimbly scaled it as before. From the balcony walkway he made his way over to the wall switch, down the red banner, and through the door, rolling just as it clanged shut behind. He was outside, facing the passage to the Fortress Entrance. Pausing before the passage door and its spinning spike poles, he recalled the pacing Raider sentries on a terrace nearby. They paced still, and now, better armed and equipped with the Eye of the Storm, he decided to see what they made such a show of protecting. At a low wall to one side he ascended to a grassy ledge, as he had done to follow the Crow Master in his own time. As then, an upward wall run was sufficient to spring back to grab the stone canopy of the passage door beneath. On landing he attracted the attention of the Raiders close by. "Alert the others," came a synthetic voice. "He's the one the Empress wants dead." A short wall run allowed him to fall slashing on the first opponent. Others ran to assist. The Prince somersaulted to a short column nearby and in one fluid move decapitated two at a stroke. The last proved no wiser. "I have failed." Nearby was a short flight of steps. As he made his way up the Prince noticed to one side a floor switch, partly concealed behind barrels. He jumped down to take a look. After clearing the obstruction he stepped on the illuminated switch. From somewhere above came the sound of a door sliding open. Hurrying up the steps, he was in time to see a slotted grate low in the wall facing him slide shut. Beside this was a wall switch. This proved to open not the slot but a main door nearby, yet curiosity told him he had not finished here. Returning to the switch at the bottom of the steps, on activation he summoned the Eye of the Storm to slow Time. With the extra seconds this gave him he was able to run up the steps to dive through the low opening at the foot of the wall. In a

moment Time flowed again and the slot slid firmly shut. The Prince was inside. In the passage ahead a rotating sword blade trap activated. Behind it a massive stone block struck out at speed from one wall, flat across the floor to the opposite wall, where it pounded hard and slid slowly back to pound again. The whole floor appeared to be of spike tiles. These traps had been set for a purpose and the Prince determined to discover it. He stood and studied the rate of the pounding wall block. Just as it fired out he began tumbling forward, over the spike traps and under the blade, to pass by at a moment it slowly retracted, and safely on as it hammered back out. He knew that a misjudgment would see him flattened to the wall. At the next corner he saw the chance to repeat the feat through an identical hazard with twin pounding blocks, and still a third beyond. Taking refuge in a corner each time between, at safe radius from the sword blades stationed there, he took his time and soon stood looking past a last sword trap at another strange glowing red symbol set into the wall at the passage end, such as he had seen at the Sacrificial Altar secret passage before. He slotted his Amulet into the center of the device, which set puffs of flame from within as a hidden mechanism triggered. The device glowed brilliant yellow and then white, and with a blinding flash charged his Amulet for the second time. The Prince retrieved it and placed it to his breastplate. Once again he was drawn into the air by a powerful force in a burst of fire, and suddenly released, strengthened. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------As before when he turned to leave he saw all traps retract, the sword blades folded back into their drums, pounding blocks flush to the wall, and spike tiles mercifully inactive. This made easy the return to the slot entrance, where a simple wall switch allowed a rolled exit. His curiosity rewarded, the Prince activated the adjacent wall switch and headed to its raised door. He realized that this was the same place at which he defeated the Crow Master in his own time. The slide to the floor down a long thin red curtain in the room beyond was the same. He was back in the vestibule, this time in company of a number of Raiders. He was becoming well practiced in inventive means of dispatch. He ran straight up a wall and performed a graceful back flip, falling with a slash on a confounded victim as he landed. A short spindle column in the center of the room was used as on the terrace shortly before to swing round among three at once, and knock their empty heads clean off at a stroke. He made his way up to the balcony walkway, and via the Griffin ledge to the next. Across the door switch he executed again his descent at the curtain, which by now was very much tattered. In a moment he was back down the steps, and across the small bridge at the passage to the Fortress Entrance. This time he went in through the open doorway, where the spiked poles in his path presented no major delay. A few dashes and

rolls brought him safely to a basin of water where he took refreshment before pressing on. Through a doorway beyond he heard as before the harsh insistent growl of the Silhouette he had previously encountered there. Now more experienced, the Prince simply cast his secondary weapon and sliced the apparition cleanly in two. From the black cloud of its passing he scooped up a blade to replace the one he had spent. He hurried to combat up the steep flight of steps to the fortress itself. He stayed on the steps to limit the direction of the Raiders rushing attack. He well had the measure of these simple creatures by now. "I grow tired of this," he said as he hacked the pack down. "I fall, but more will rise to take my place," groaned their last. "Avenge me, my brothers." The Silhouette was as easily cut in two as his fellow, and died choking blood. The Prince gained access through the Fortress Entrance once again, and made his way to the Central Hall. This time he noticed the large doorway opposite was open. The woman in red had already passed through. Between him and his goal waited a Raider quartet. Combat was brief. At the far end of the central platform the Prince made a jump out over the bottomless chasm. Taking pause at the fountain there he prepared to enter the passage beyond. On first rounding of a corner he heard traps being activated. Over the staircase before him two spiked logs, rising and falling, and beyond these a rotating blade, all taken at a roll. At the next turn a spike pit, crossed at a run between another pair of spiked logs, rising and falling in opposition. At the far end of the pit another blade trap, now almost routine. At the head of the staircase above, a wider spike pit and two more spiked logs, one at station and a lower one coursing back and forth along the pit length. Timing his moment the Prince ran out as the log moved away, and sprang back off the wall to land on a narrow ledge. He was perilously close to the path of the log on its return, and edged himself away into the safety of an alcove. He moved cautiously back in the wake of the log as it moved away again, finding the ledge on which he stood ended just short of the stationary log. A second ledge starting here just above allowed safe refuge as the moving log made its return. This now passing safely by under him, the Prince dropped once more and hung off the second ledge, shuffling as quickly as he could manage in the path of the soon returning log. He passed under the stationary one and moved on, to drop with relief at the far edge of the pit. Two more rotating drum blades gave little hindrance. Up a final flight of stairs came a last sword blade trap and once past it the Prince found himself faced by a heavy shut door. Somebody planned few should see it. A ladder propped against the wall led nowhere, but on climbing it the Prince noticed a kind of metal ledge behind him. He jumped backwards and found this to be a falling lever, which counterbalanced the door at the end of the passage. It ground slowly upwards as he dropped to the ground, standing on the cantilever ledge. He jumped down, but as he ran to the door it began to close, a little too swiftly for him. He returned to operate the lever again, and this time as it fell he maneuvered himself to one side nearest the door and hung from the edge. When he was sure the door had opened to its fullest extent, he dropped off and ran hard for it as it started to close. Just in time he rolled underneath and it slid

shut. He was relieved to notice a wall lever on this side to reopen the door in future, perhaps. He was in a vaulted chamber. A shaft of light struck down from a skylight high above. At its far end, a stone staircase rose from either side of the room to curve up to a circular platform. Beneath it stood a curious device of slender glass. In the light of a ring of flaming torches he could just make out a figure atop a short ladder beside it. He moved to approach. It was the woman in red. She stopped, not pleased and not much surprised by the intrusion. "This is a dangerous place. You should not have come back." "I don't have the luxury, I must see the Empress." The woman climbed down the ladder. She gave a dismissive sigh. "Impossible." She held in her hand a sword with a long, thin, elegantly twisted blade. The Prince pressed his intention. "My mission," he said, "it is very urgent. I must see her." "You don't understand. When the last grain falls from this hourglass the Empress will create the Sands of Time. No business of yours could be more important than that." "I have come to stop the Empress from creating the Sands." "Then yours is a fool's errand. The creation of the Sands is foretold in the Timeline." She shook her head ruefully. "It cannot be stopped." "I just saved your life," he stabbed an accusing finger. "Twice. All I'm asking for is some information. Tell me where the Sands will be created." She conceded the obligation, for the good it would do. "In there," she looked to a heavy door behind thick bands of steel. "But the room has been sealed. You cannot enter." "There must be a way." "Hah! You would have to undo the very fortifications of the castle." She gestured the obvious. "An impossible task." "When a man is faced with his own death, he finds the impossible less of a barrier. Tell me how." "Very well." The woman described for him the method to unlock the heavy door. "The gate is controlled by an elaborate clockwork system located inside the Mechanical Tower." This was a formidable structure built into one wing of the fortress.

"Even assuming you can reach the device and activate it, the machine still needs power. As water passes through the moat, the machine will receive power. But first you will have to fill the moat from the supply in the Garden Tower." This was a structure located in an external part of the fortress complex, linked to the Mechanical Tower by an aqueduct. "Activate both towers and the door will open." He knew what to do but was too well aware that there would be obstacles and danger and determined opponents at every step. "You'll need this," said the woman. She presented her sword with its long twisted blade. He reached for the handle. They held it between them for a moment. "It's more than just a weapon. It also serves to activate a system of bridges which will grant you access to the other towers." She sighed. "It won't make a difference, though." "What do you mean?" "Succeed or fail the outcome is the same. You will not stop the Sands from being created. What is written in the timeline cannot be changed." The Prince was undaunted. "Thanks for the advice." She watched him go, her green eyes impassive. ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN S E R P E N T S W O R D This very special sword serves as a key and lets you perform a more powerful combo. ---------------------------------------------The Prince turned to attend his mission. He needed to unseal that heavy door and to do that he must gain access to each tower in turn, whatever hazards he faced. As he left the Hourglass Chamber he noticed upon the floor beneath his feet a curious design. Nine interlocking circles formed a ring around a larger circle, each bearing a slightly differing symbol. Two were aglow with brilliant white light. He could not determine the cause. He lent his weight to the mechanical lever on the wall by the door, which reopened it, grinding slowly to a close behind him as he rolled underneath. He made his way back along the corridor of traps, ably negotiating the ingenious array of lethal devices. A fine test of his ability to be sure, though for one less agile than he, quite impossible. -- THE KEY AND THE LOCK ------------------------------------------------Back in the Central Hall the Prince jumped to the raised floor in the center. He approached the stone rose beyond the circular motif. This was the device that would give him access to the two towers. Now armed with

the key to it he plunged the Serpent Sword into a groove in the rose. Rays of light burst forth and the circular depression in the floor nearby parted to reveal a short pedestal rising from beneath. It ignited to flame in a brazier on top. Before he had the chance to investigate, Raiders appeared through the doorway behind him. His new sword showed ready appetite. The flaming pedestal proved to be a capstan. A short handle allowed him to rotate this, and on so doing the Prince was astonished to see great columns of stone blocks rising and falling to be set to position from the depths that surrounded him. Certain combinations of tall blocks formed bridges from which others might be reached, and through this circumstance could be seen the method of entry to various doorways about the Central Hall, previously inaccessible. He remembered the words of the woman in red: "First you'll have to fill the moat from the supply in the Garden Tower." Looking again at the circular motifs at his feet, the Prince understood the meaning of the water symbol on one. He turned the capstan device so that the handle pointed to it, and found by so doing that several groups of stone columns rose up on the other side of the chasm. One set nearby. He climbed up on a short block that made a platform, to launch a wall run and jump out towards a block column with a thin ledge. He clung precariously and edged around to a spot where he was able to clamber up to another ledge, and with a few short jumps and a little more climbing he arrived at a doorway. Beyond could be seen a pair of Raiders. They were not about to congratulate him on his effort. The Prince made short work of them and hurried down the passage they guarded. As he brushed aside a slow billowing drape he almost blundered into a rotating sword trap. The excitement of his progress had nearly dulled caution, yet he knew he must always take care. He rolled easily past each of two swords and rounded a corner to find a passage very brightly lit by daylight from above. He stepped forward and noticed a pressure pad prominent on the stone tiles before him. Not wishing another unpleasant surprise, the Prince moved cautiously around it and looked down to a shallow pit of wooden planks that led the passage on. It looked safe enough to jump down. He ran on along the passage, light showing between the planks but the surface quite sound. Around a corner a solid wooden wall that he could not climb blocked the way. There was not much else to find. Returned to the floor switch, the Prince saw no option but to activate it. In front of him a grille sprang out over the pit. The Prince lost no time in running out upon it, but within a few strides it began to retract. He turned back and ran to the safety of the floor switch. The pit was not deep but he had to get across it to the other end of the passage. Of course he had at his ready disposal the Eye of the Storm. Stepping once more on the switch, this time as the metal walkway shot out the Prince slowed Time so that he ran easily across to where from below he had been halted by the wooden wall. To his disappointment, he arrived merely at a stage along the passage, and here now was another drop down to another pit of wooden planks. He knew what to expect from investigation, so turned his attention to a wall switch he saw opposite. Too high to reach from the pit beneath, yet there were two metal bars short in front that might serve as means to swing to it. He jumped up from the wall beside him to grab the first bar, handily curved that he might shimmy to face the second. He set himself at a swing and flew

acrobatically to the second bar, and off that to plant his feet firmly on the switch. It activated immediately, and as he fell towards the wooden pit the Prince unleashed the power of the Sand once again to slow Time, such that he landed on the metal grille unloosed by the switch, and ran on down the passage without pause. Even with the miracle he had at his disposal, the last section of grille slid back under his feet as he barely made it to the end of the passage. -- THE WATER MAIDEN ----------------------------------------------------He emerged in bright sunlight at a lush courtyard garden. Neat lawns and trees surrounded a central pool of stepped stone bridges to a sculpture of a water-bearing maiden, enclosed in an ivy-strewn pergola. The impression was delightful. "So Babylon is not the only place to discover the wonders of hanging gardens," the Prince marveled. "Ours, however, do not provide sanctuary to monsters." His instincts proved correct. A harsh voice called out: "Attack him now!" In a moment red-hooded guards came hurrying to bar his way. Keepers of the two towers, these proved better fighters than the mostly mindless enemies thus far. Determined swordsmen, they were ready to block and quick to strike, though they seemed perhaps over confident in their abilities. "Stand tall, human, and meet your fate," said the first. "Don't kill him yet," boasted another. "I will deal the final blow." As he applied sufficient force, the Prince dealt with them well enough in any case. "So many against me, yet it is still too easy." He used the space in the garden to circle and strike each as it came. These few were no match for his blade. "Pay attention," he said, "This is what becomes of those who cross me." "Fall back!" cried one. "Send for reinforcements." The Prince vaulted over a last wretch and flung him overhead. This helpless Keeper splashed into the central pool, whereon it vanished in an instant. As with the Dahaka, it seemed these servants of Sand could not withstand the simple touch of water. He would bear that in mind. He made exploration of the small Garden Hall. It was now deserted but for a few possessed birds, which flapped slowly to attack at his approach but troubled his sword little. Opposite his entrance, a large solid door, with red symbol very familiar to him upon it, was firmly shut. Each side of this a shallow pool at opposite corners to one end of the garden stood before large niche sculptures. One seemed to have a slender structure leading towards it, raised off the ground. As he searched for a means up to it the Prince observed, at four points set into the manicured lawn, round decorated stone tiles, two either side. Linking them were narrow covered channels that led back to each pool. Their significance could not be guessed. To one side near his entrance, the Prince noticed a ladder. He sprang up from a wall to grab on, and nimbly ascended.

At a platform above waited a familiar but unwelcome figure. The towering Crow Master had returned to challenge him again. It spoke with glutinous menace. "I see there is still much I can teach you. You'll need to try harder if you hope to best me." The Prince joined battle using his practiced vault attack, slashing down as he landed each time. His foe was able to block only half, and in just a few short strokes it dissipated in squealing flapping chaos of birds in flight. As before, it reformed on a higher ledge, daring him on. A ladder to hand, the Prince hurried to repeat his assault. It took only a hard blow or two for the Crow Master to retreat once more, and settle on a narrow platform somewhere above the slender structure that the Prince had noticed from the ground. With the aid of a hanging length of rope at one side he jumped over to beat the demon off once and for all. "It looks like even I cannot escape my fate," came the dying echo of its mechanical voice. For his pains, the Prince was grateful to recover from the ground the mysterious warrior's sword. He looked out to the niche sculpture a little below him at the corner of the garden. Birds cawed intermittently and insects hummed in the stifling air. It seemed he could make out an opening in the very far corner beyond the sculpture's head, and by a run out on the wall - not too far - made his way to it across a horizontal bar. Inside was a tall narrow passage, open to bright sunlight, with its floor far below. The Prince dropped swiftly down a series of ledges. Light shafted in at tall windows. A Keeper stood waiting. The sword of the Crow Master dealt with him easily. "This is not how it is supposed to end," came its dying hiss. There could be no other way. The Prince moved on. At each end of the passage floor was a door, firmly shut. At the far end a series of ledges matched those he had climbed down, and it was the work of moments before he drew up at a stone platform with a short groan of effort. Here stood a water fountain to give some relief. Wind whistled into the darkened passage as he emerged to the light. A raised gate gave on to a small terrace garden. The wind blew high about as he gazed down on an intricate series of platforms, gates, and bridges, levers and switches scattered between. There also, in his intended path, an unknown number of enemies. He hurried out into the open and found at once a capstan lever at the center of the terrace. Turning this, a nearby gate shot open as the one behind him closed down. He made his way through and saw along a walkway ahead a Keeper, seemingly unaware of his approach. A fatal lapse. The Prince moved on up a short flight of stone steps. He was in a courtyard garden, lush but poorly tended. On a substantial squared pillar of stone before him he recognized a cantilever pressure

switch such as he had used to gain access to the Hourglass Chamber. Beside this a Keeper, joined swiftly by others. "Stop him before he gets any further! Do not allow him to pass." "Come on," he retorted. "Let's finish this." These soldiers were determined but by now predictable. Though they were strong enough to block many of his straightforward attacks, the Prince found they could not long stand up to his acrobatic maneuvering. When the last had vanished to yellow dust, the Prince heard the guttural outbursts of the ethereal Silhouettes, two or three of which flitted about the trees and pillars in the garden. "I'm here, I'm there, I'm everywhere!" one taunted. "Don't you know you can't kill a shadow?" Yet even a few blows of his sword were enough to finish them, and there was no shortage of weapons left lying by the defeated Keepers to use as projectiles. Having peace at last the Prince made thorough exploration of the small garden. These lush garden ledges were fed through an ingenious network of watercourses. Around a thick tree at the courtyard center were covered channels leading to drains. Looking up, he observed platforms and jetties. In one bright sunlit corner he noticed a section of balustrade appeared missing. Dropping down here he made his way via ledges to a very small platform, high above the ground. A wall run brought him to another, beside an open doorway. Inside, a short passage led to a deep chamber. Water poured from the garden above through a spout to the depths below. The Prince climbed down a series of ledges to a platform, and from there a jump from a wall pole led him to an adjacent platform with more ledges to descend. Not pausing to admire elaborate decoration on floor tiles beneath him, the Prince rounded a corner, where he found twin sword blades gliding over a bed of spiked tile traps. He ran and tumbled to the safety of a corner, and took the measure of the neighboring hazard, a horizontally traveling spiked log and a rotating sword drum. That the floor here also was of spiked tiles added a little to the danger as he ran on behind the log and rolled forward to another corner. Ahead lay another fiendish pairing of twin spiked poles and gliding sword blades. He decided to call on the Eye of the Storm to negotiate the poles, since their rate of travel across his path seemed somewhat excessive. The next junction he shared with a rotating sword drum, but there was room tight to one corner to recover his breath. Still his trial was not complete, and here was a second horizontal spike log to negotiate at a roll. As he tumbled to safety, the Prince allowed his relief at sight of the soft glowing red illumination of the wall symbol at the passage end that signaled his goal. Once more he approached the mysterious device and touched to it his Amulet, recovering it fully charged to his breast, and was borne into the air on a burst of fiery light as before. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases

the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------As he turned to make his way back, the traps, as on previous visits to the secret devices, retracted and became still. In no time he zigzagged the lengthy but now harmless passage to the sound only of wind, and negotiated the ledges and the platform between to emerge to the light once again. He soon made his way back up to the courtyard garden. His enemies had returned. "Do as you are told and kill him!" He ran directly to the square pillar and pulled down on the pressure lever. A nearby block rose up against a wall. Knowing without seeing that this would be on a short counterbalance, the Prince slowed Time for himself that he might run to it, avoiding the Keepers attempting to bar his way. He climbed up and grabbed a ledge before the block slid to the ground. As it did so, the enemies in the courtyard garden vanished to dust. He jumped backwards to the bough of a tree, which might have been fashioned for use as a beam. He balanced out on a branch to make a hop onto a stone jetty and ledge at an ornate sculpted column. An intermediate wall pole carried him to a matching column at one corner of the garden. He balanced carefully along the top edge of a trellis, not daring to look down at the sea very far below on a sheer drop. Another ledge and jetty faced the top of the squared pillar, which he saw was arched at its top with a pole projecting from its center point. This brought him nicely to a higher bough on that same tree at which he began. He had worked all around the courtyard garden and was now quite high above. A rope hung down off a wall of the fortress in front. He grabbed hold and dropped down to give himself as much length as he could to run out and swing from a wall pole to a cranny on a pillar. Now he faced a bold leap backwards over the sheer drop to the sea, even further below. He caught hold of a stone jetty and scrambled to the relative safety of a platform walkway. Safe but for a waiting figure. "Unfortunate that you have fallen so easily," came the voice of the Crow Master. The Prince was unmoved. "So it's a fight you want." He ran to the towering demon and dealt a hard blow, rolling aside before it could bring its own weapon to bear. It gasped in shock as he vaulted easily over, striking on landing in his usual style. Though the creature had undoubted tenacity it showed little resilience and soon scattered to its demonic flock. Through an open gateway that it seemed eager to protect the Prince found only empty platforms and a closed gate. This bore a switch symbol but the matching device was nowhere to be found. Close by, column ledges gave access to raised platforms overhead. Here underfoot was a switch that raised up the gate below, and revealed a capstan lever behind. However, on the instant he left it, the Prince found the floor switch released the gate down again. He would need some assistance to keep the floor switch depressed. On an adjacent platform the Crow Master sought to resume. The Prince leaped over to it and struck

out with his sword. On first contact the being collapsed to its scattered flock of possessed birds. Overhead where it guarded was a hanging lever, which (with no reason not to) the Prince swung up to and pulled. A drawbridge descended where he had stood on the floor switch. It formed a wooden walkway leading only to a sturdy-looking crate, with surely only one use. He ran eagerly over and pushed the heavy wooden box the short distance to the switch. On the platform below, the gate was raised permanently and he could now gain access to the capstan lever. The Prince looked out with satisfaction. The towering cliffs all around rose from the sea, very far below. Out beyond the bay he could see the Raider pirate ship at anchor. He was reminded of his purpose and made his way down. The Crow Master waited once more. "I want to win with honor," it said. "Get back on your feet." Although skilled with its sword, the many fruitless encounters with the Prince thus far had not daunted its intent. The creature seemed either very brave or very stupid. This confrontation was brief. "It is unfortunate that it must end this way," came the mechanical voice. With a last flurry of feathers and dust, it disappeared. The Prince claimed as his own its powerful though sadly not durable sword. With the platform walkways to himself, the Prince ran on to the newly exposed capstan. With a short turn of its handle a switch clunked into operation and a sluice opened beneath his platform. A torrent of water spilled along a flat channel moat and into the fortress walls below. With the pressure of water, capstan levers sprang up in the Garden Hall. Clearly, he should make his way back to find what operation they might conduct. The Prince hopped down to splash through the channel of water. At its end, high above the gardens, he found a crack along one wall that he used to shuffle round and drop from to a small platform, off which a thin stone beam gave on to another. Midway along it was a small jetty that the Prince used to get close to the fortress wall, where he noticed a rope hanging down. A leap and a drop, and he stood beside the capstan on the small terrace garden that opened and closed opposite gates. Using this he returned inside. -- WATER AND GARDENS ---------------------------------------------------The Prince made his way once again down into the dank passage, where another Keeper had replaced the single sentry pacing its lonely path. It proved no better suited to its task. "I think I will need help," it whimpered. A swift climb up the ledges on the far end brought him once more to overlook the Garden Hall. He dropped off the open doorway and shuffled around to where a long thin red banner hung beside the giant statue. In his now customary manner the Prince used his blade to slow descent to the ground down the convenient cloth. Other Keepers had been sent to prevent his return through the garden but he soon finished them with the Crow Master sword. Though somewhat fragile it had power while it lasted. Soon enough the Prince turned his attention to the raised capstan handles.

He put his shoulder to the first one until it clunked and appeared set. He followed the narrow covered channel on the ground to the next capstan and rotated it similarly. He saw water flow in the channels beneath his feet, from the central pool of the Water Maiden to one of the giant stone statues at one end of the Garden Hall. The water spewed from its mouth into a stone bowl, which lowered under the weight and served thus as a cantilever to open an adjoining channel, causing water to flow from spouts at one side of the closed central door. Things were developing nicely. At the other side of the Garden another pair of capstans had raised up. When he had water flowing in its direction by turning one capstan handle, he hurried to operate the last. The flow of water through the sluice channels was complete. The second statue became operational. As water poured from its mouth, the stone tray in the hands of the second statue began to descend in the manner of the first, and on the other side of the central doorway between, water flowed. Now counterbalanced, the door shot open. The Prince ran eagerly to it. At the end of a short passage within he came to a drop and was momentarily unsure how to proceed. He looked up and saw, partly obscured by vegetation, stone ledges, which he soon used to emerge at higher level. He was scarcely ruffled by a last pair of screeching crows slowly flapping to peck at him as he went. At the end of a short passage here he ducked through a curtain of water to enter a new Time portal chamber, identical to the others. By trial and error as before he soon activated the four pillar wall switches to release molten Sand to its spiral, and hurried to it to return to his Present. ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN B R E A T H O F F A T E This power lets you do a strong ground attack hurting several enemies simultaneously. Use this power when the Prince is surrounded by enemies ---------------------------------------------He is back in the sullied Present. As he emerges through the curtain of water the passageway beyond is now overgrown with weeds and darkened by lichen. Keepers are in evidence. "Stop him before he gets any further." The passage of time has not blunted their sarcasm. "On your knees, dog," sneers one. "Unfortunate that I must dirty my hands on the likes of you." "I have more important matters to attend to," advises the Prince. "Throw down your swords or lose your arms. Run while you still can." Words unheeded, lessons to be learned. The passage clear, the means of descent at its end is the same, though all ledges now are edged in weeds and more difficult to discern. He steps carefully, not wanting to miss his hold and plunge to unseen depths. More

guards wait his arrival. He drops swiftly behind and slices one and casts the other to those very depths. "Fall back! Send for reinforcements," comes a futile command. If they come at all, they will be too late to assist. As the Prince rounds the corner another sentry jogs forward. As reinforcement not worthy of the name. "Now you will serve the Empress," it dares. An empty threat, when such as he is to command. The Prince finishes the vainglorious attacker at a stroke and moves on into the Garden Hall, now in a pitiful state of ruin. "It seems like the vegetation has taken its toll on this part of the tower," he muses. "It is completely overgrown." He hops over a low wall to the pond, now choked with weeds and collapsed at one side to a tumbling waterfall. He stoops to take a mouthful of brackish water. Twisted petrified vegetation has grown up in the passage ahead, and fallen masonry stops up any access back to the Central Hall. That was his route in the Past, where the corridor of traps led back to the Hourglass Chamber, from which he hoped to go through the massive iron door to the Throne Room. "The Throne Room is so close, and yet I cannot reach it from here. I'll have to find another way." The shallow pond at one corner has collapsed to a chasm, and there seems no way to ascend to any higher ledges that may have survived the insidious process of decay. The Prince returns to the entrance to find another way forward, and sees there a short block, low against one wall. Looking up, he judges that he can mount a fallen arch, and swiftly does so. He progresses at some elevation along stone beams to the pergola top, now thick with weeds, around the sculpture of the Water Maiden, splashing merrily as ever shortly beneath him. From this slender footpath, he leaps to a stone platform. An overconfident Keeper drops down to join him. "He's no match for me," its last, inappropriate, remark. To one side is a partly cracked ledge, which the Prince uses to climb up to a higher platform. More Keepers circle menacingly, and are swiftly assisted by a new and unusual fighting companion, a near invisible creature in female form, nimble and gymnastic as a Blade Dancer. Chameleon-like they blend near invisible with the green vegetation, such that he has to keep his wits to sense their position as he turns to fight them away. Still the Keepers maintain their verbal assault. "How dare you confront me? Filthy human, you will die like all your kind." As ever, empty words. The Prince scoops up a weapon left by one of the Chameleon creatures and tests it on a Keeper. To his alarm he finds it deals as much damage to himself as his victim, and promptly discards it. He has many better skills to deal with their like. With the platform silenced the Prince considers his next move. A slender

stone pillar proves in reach of a wall run, and he makes further progress by a wall ledge to drop onto a thick branch that has pierced the brick just underneath. Off this he drops down to the slender structure - which he now knew to be an aqueduct - leading to the giant niche statue. He climbs up onto the stone tray in its hands, barely recognizable in its overgrown state. A slender branch gives means of access to the hole in the wall through which he had passed in another time. The means of descent are the same. With careful alignment he drops down narrow ledges, hung with weeds. The floor has long since collapsed, but at a certain point he is able to jump backwards to a tree branch, along which he makes way by a series of careful jumps, through sometimes dense foliage, to the other end of the passage. A far jump to the wall finds him on a stone ledge. He makes his way up others above to the slippery moss strewn passage that leads to the open air. He clears the stifling taste of rotting vegetation at the water basin to hand there. He emerges onto the small terrace garden where he once again gazes down on platforms, walkways and ledges, now thickly overgrown. Even had the capstans he operated in the Past been yet operational, the walkways had crumbled from his original route. He must look for other means of access to his goal. He has first to subdue a pair of Keepers, joined soon by a Blade Dancer. With little exertion he sees off the gang of them, and then considers his path. Dropping down opposite the doorway, he makes his way around overgrown ledges to a point where he can leap to grab a grassy platform. He jumps down to a garden area, where he is assaulted again, this time by a pair of frisky and bothersome Blade Dancers. Still he prevails and now, climbing up, makes his way to a higher platform. This is part of a shattered walkway but he judges he might run out upon a wall to leap backwards and grab hold of a thin ledge further along. Climbing up here he recognizes the small courtyard garden where he fought the Silhouettes and their cohorts in the Past. In this Present he becomes surrounded by Blade Dancers and Chameleons, together much the most troublesome of his ordinary opponents due to their unpredictable change of direction and vicious rapid attack. Drawing on the power of his Sand, the Prince invokes the Eye of the Storm to slow Time around him. He is thus able to move fairly effortlessly amongst these assassins in female form, finishing them one by one. When he has peace he looks around and considers the change in this place since last he was here. The sluices are all dry and overgrown. The walls are collapsed, the steps at the garden entrance lead down to a sheer drop. The corner where he discovered the passage to the secret device has disappeared completely. The square pillar is not to be found but the tree he climbed up next to it is now very thick and potentially useful as ever. He mounts a grassy ledge at one side and springs first to a worn tree trunk then off to a branch of another tree close by. From that he swings over another branch to a section of crumbled wall. He steps carefully along to a point where a long jump brings him to the ledges of a corner column, where once he ascended to fight the Crow Master. By much arduous shimmying he brings himself to a ledge with a jetty, and over a branch to a higher platform. Despite the apparent impossibility that any might find safe route through such hazards as he faced, the Prince was ever confident of his path. He found now the fruit of his athletic ability, his goal a high platform almost within reach. Others had already found their way to this elevation. At a grassy platform that he reaches from a swing off a

slender branch, a posse of Keepers await. "Pay attention, there is much that I can teach you," sneers one. Very well, thinks their willing pupil, if the lesson today is how to die. The Prince notes a spindle column set in the middle of this platform, and recalls a lesson of his own that he learned on his ship so very long ago. He grabs hold of the column and spins round it, slicing his enemies to pieces at a stroke. When all are vanquished he looks around the empty space. To one side he spots a stone jetty, at which he arrives on a wall run. Pulling up here he finds a water basin to recover lost strength. Close beside he mounts a short wall, atop which he looks back to the courtyard garden. One of the tree trunks looks within reach. The Prince leaps out towards the tree, grabs and holds tight. He shuffles around to repeat the maneuver to a neighboring tree, and still another after that. On he goes, aligning himself for a careful landing on an extended branch. Far below he sees an inlet from the sea. The surrounding fortress looms either side of sheer cliffs. He has no time to admire the scenery, though he cannot fail to be impressed once again by the spectacular view. Is that the pirate Raider's ship, he wonders, still moored beyond the bay but now wrecked? Time deals its own justice. He moves on to what must be the highest platform, met here by a lone Blade Dancer. Her friend appears too late to prevent the Prince his onward run along a wall to a ledge, and in moments he is back inside the fortress walls. On a turn of a passage he is about to leap a short gap over a pit, when he finds that the block ledge he is aiming to land on is in fact a pounding wall slider. As with others he has seen, it slowly retracts and then hammers out. The passage is too narrow to negotiate without recourse to a jump over off it. This difficulty is compounded by the identical hazard just beyond. The Prince can see that, should he tarry long, one or other of the blocks might retract to cause him to lose hold, then extend rapidly to pound him flat against the wall. He has only a second or two to make use of each. As the first block hammers out, the Prince jumps and clambers on it, then steps forward and jumps off again, landing on the smooth upper surface of the second block even as it begins to retract. With presence of mind he jumps up into the air, such that the block extends on its next cycle under him, and carries him out into the middle of the passage, where he leaps once more, forwards this time, to cling and grapple to his feet safe on the passage floor the other side of the pit. Here is a basin to recover his nerve. Outside once more, the way is over yet more sliding blocks. The last pair had taken him slightly unawares; with better timing he can negotiate these properly. He stands at a ledge and observes their motion. He judges that he can stay close to the wall to leap out at first rapid extension, and jump without pause to the second whilst stationary. This he achieves easily but is momentarily taken aback when he realizes the distance to his next station. In an instant he runs out on a wall to grab hold of a hanging rope, where he continues his run to release, and on the extent of his trajectory, leaps back off the sheer wall to cling on to a tree. Catching his breath here among the swaying branches he considers his next move. A spinning spiked log grinds up and down alongside his perch, proving but a minor impediment to a carefully timed jump from the tree to a column, and from that to safe ground. Safe, that is but for the sudden

appearance through an archway of the Crow Master and a Chameleon companion. After his recent exertions the Prince has no desire for fruitless combat and he makes his way swiftly past to balance out on a stone jetty above a bottomless pit. "The Empress will be pleased with my success," follows a taunt. The Prince does not rise to such. He leaps for a slender column and aligns himself with a small platform the other side. A short wall run brings him to another. He looks up to gray skies. Down is deepest black where the foundations of the fortress disappear. He returns across the gap by a second column and another jetty to an open doorway. Two Chameleons swoop to obstruct him in the small overgrown chamber within. He wastes little time in fending them off. "There's so much pleasure in pain," one moans. Then have some more, he decides, and the pleasure is mine. The Prince makes his way out to another platform and looks down on his destination. Signs of ruin are everywhere. Among dense vegetation stand the remains of stone machinery. "I've found the right place but at the wrong time," he realizes. "I'll need to return to the Past if I want to activate this tower." Waiting, sword at the ready, on a platform high across perilous gaps and crumbling walls stands the Crow Master, eyes burning. As ever it seems to anticipate his direction and draws him on. The Prince runs along a wall to a platform, where he finds a weapon rack to ready himself for the coming confrontation. A short run back off the wall and he jumps to a slender column, with a tree trunk behind. He is aware of the need to align himself very carefully, and shuffles downward a little to spring to a wall pole and off to the stump of a column further away nearly lost in the thick overgrowth. He trusts his skill sufficiently that a leap to grab the shattered remains of a narrow arch is worth the risk of a fall hundreds of feet to the sea below. With a grunt he lands hard but pulls up. Off a short platform is a jetty, where he lines up for a jump to a pole projecting from a decorative column on the ruined structure on which he stands. The Crow Master faces him beyond. The Prince lands on a short platform, dust rising at his feet. He draws his sword, ready for combat. From some distance below a massive black creature steps out and springs into the air, landing heavily behind the Prince. The Crow Master brandishes its weapon, then stops short, struck by the apparition that is the Dahaka. The monstrous arrival puts forth its leathery tentacles, pierces the startled Crow Master and plucks him aside. It intends that no other shall deal death on the Prince before it. The Prince gasps and turns as the hapless form of his intended foe is whipped through the air and cast upon him. The blow knocks him flying to an adjoining platform where he falls, winded. The Dahaka casts aside its distraction and turns attention to the Prince. Dazed, the Prince regains his feet. To fight at that moment would mean certain death. He takes to his heels. A ladder is out to grab the foot of off without hard against the wall of the fortress to one side. He runs on, slides down with the roar of the Dahaka in his ears. At the ladder he leaps off to a pole, and another, and straight time to think or scarce to plan ahead. He knows that a

second's pause will allow the beast to close in, and he will be snatched up as that other had been moments before. He lands on a walkway leading back into the fortress, and scrambles up a ledge. The walkway crumbles before him, and the Prince takes off at a run over the wall and enters inside. A gap in the passage floor is passed quickly over to a corner platform, where another wall run has him drop through an archway to the outside air. Without pause for breath, he hastily lines up for a daring run out over curved walls to a long ladder, which drops him to a balcony beneath. The vengeful Dahaka appears through the arched doorway above him. The Prince runs back across the curved wall to another doorway. Two barrels block him; with a single blow of his sword he shatters one and squeezes through. As his fingers clutch to a platform ledge ahead he hears the other barrel crack behind him. The Dahaka is at his back! The Prince hauls up and keeps running, incomprehensible threats of the relentless pursuer thick in his head. A gap directly ahead has him clinging to a thin edge of the passage beyond. He shuffles quickly to one side to pull up, and races toward more barrels strung in his way. Any will do for his sword to splinter and again he runs through, twisting down the ruined passage ahead. With barely a pause to think of the consequence of missed footing, the pounding feet of the beast close behind, the Prince runs over a wide gap on a turn. A rope against the wall lets him carry his momentum to the far side, where he hears the Dahaka smash against a wall and rage in fury as its quarry seems close to escape. Not yet, as he rushes headlong down a short passage that soon ends in a dead drop. In a blur he spots a ladder fixed to the wall ahead, and leaps for it, slides swiftly to its foot and drops off, without care for the fall. He tilts headlong down the passage before him, the heavy tread and hot breath of his angry pursuer close behind. The Prince sees a curtain of water at last, a Time portal surely beyond, and tumbles through. The Dahaka roars impotently outside. ----------------------Activate portal to Past -------------------------------------------------------------------YOU GAIN N E W S A N D T A N K A new sand tank lets you stock more Sands of Time ---------------------------------------------Once more in the been restored to where the Dahaka machinery there. Past, the Prince sees with satisfaction that all has pristine condition. He can return to the garden area began its chase, and perhaps find a way to activate the All being well, he should be able to retrace his steps.

Although the Dahaka pursued him only in the Present where he did not belong, almost at once the Prince encountered other opposition beyond the curtain of water. Two Keepers waited his arrival. "He's no match for me," scoffed one. "My abilities could be put to better use." "So many choices, so little challenge," said the Prince, wearily. "Which of you wants to be next?"

It made no difference. In a few moments he sheathed his blade, and continued to the passage end and ascended the ladders there. As he pulled himself into the daylight of the platform at the top, the Crow Master reappeared. "I did not expect you to fail so quickly." There was plenty of room to move and the Prince made short work of dissipating the creature once again. Would it never learn to counter his vault attack? The Prince saw his way by a rope over to a balcony, where at a division he hung from one side to swing off two bars high above ground. This brought him to another balcony in front of a closed door and an open passage. And two more Keepers. "Attack him now!" "Is this the best you have to offer?" said the Prince as he finished them off. The door was not to be opened, but along the open passage was another, more promising. A short ladder gave him height to jump backwards, lending his weight to a wall pressure switch. The heavy door rose beside, and fell too slowly to prevent him access. Down steps at the passage end he came outside, where more Keepers watched for intruders. "This blister thinks he can stop us?" He whirled into them, flinging first one then the other off their battlement to the ground far below. He remembered well this part of the fortress after his desperate flight from the Dahaka. At this very spot he had broken the barrel to gain entrance. He looked out to the distance where an aqueduct sloped from the Garden Waterworks into the castle. His path lay upwards. He edged out on ledges and up to a long ladder on a platform. He ascended to its canopy. Close on one side a rank of saw blades squealed and spun up and down across his path. He waited until the blade nearest began its fall and ran out, passing among all three to the safety of a doorway. Inside, he timed a run beneath more saw blades, leaped back off their wall and found himself safe beside a water fountain. After this much exertion he needed a drink. Climbing up a low wall he emerged through an open gate to the Garden Waterworks. The gate dropped shut firmly behind. Where he realized on his last visit the ruined machinery would be no use, now all seemed in good order. Huge stone spigots towered above, in a particular arrangement that he could not yet discern. He noticed a central capstan lever that might give some clue. Before he was able to give this consideration he was confronted by Keepers, no sooner dealt with than joined by a Chameleon creature, nearly invisible to him but found by his sword. The stone mechanics were arranged about a decorative garden, in need of light weeding but otherwise in quite pleasing trim. There were two spigot towers on either side of the central capstan he had noticed. A massive statue of a Water Maiden was set into the wall of the castle itself, ledges, balconies and columns visible around. The whole looked out on magnificent views across to the fortress, where below he saw covered walkways and the aqueduct, as yet bone dry.

As he checked over the central capstan he became aware of more Keepers prowling on the far side of the garden. "Stop him before he gets any further," one ordered. "He's no match for us," was the grave misjudgment of the next. "I am not impressed," the Prince offered. "Get out of my way." Perhaps as he might have expected, on their demise not one but two Chameleons came at him. With a modicum of caution these were repulsed. Having peace then to apply the task, he turned the capstan handle to see what mechanism it might operate. One of the four massive spigots ground slowly around at the rate of his turning of the capstan. A projection on one side of it pointed in a direction to match his handle. With the makings of a plan, the Prince judged that it might best be faced to a tall slender pillar nearby. He ran over to see. A block at the base of the spigot gave means to climb on top of it, and he realized now that its decorative shape meant that if faced in any other direction he would not have been able to mount, had he tried. This gave him confidence in the soundness of his plan. He balanced out on the projection and jumped easily to the tall slender pillar. He hugged tight, ascended as far as he was able, and jumped back to the castle wall. A cranny allowed him to drop to a convenient nook close beside. A rope hung down at a wall leading off. Water flowed from a spout in the wall somewhere under his feet as he ran across, swung off the rope and landed on a high platform. Here was a second capstan lever. This rotated the tall spigot nearest to him, and a shorter one down in the garden below. Once again he gave heed to a long arm projecting from the tall spigot. While he judged he might easily jump to it from his elevated position, he looked beyond to see where his course lay. He moved the capstan handle so that the spigot faced out, towards an ivy-covered stone arch forming the roof over the walkways beyond. He made his way across, and on to one of the spigots the other side. A jetty projecting from a platform gave access to another capstan that mirrored the last. He turned the final spigot, this time certain that it should best face to the castle itself. He cleared a weapon rack from his way and made ready to cross. Another rope, another nook, another cranny. Another slender pillar. Presently he was atop the final spigot, looking down on the statue of the water bearer and facing a mossy hidden platform in the castle walls ahead. He jumped over and hopped behind a low wall to a lower gap under a trellis gate. He had reached his goal. At the center of a small conical chamber was a capstan on a plinth of mosaic decoration. A single slit window lit the room and leaves drifted from somewhere above. Looking up the Prince saw that the chamber was open to the skies. He saw too a doorway. He soon scrambled up to the doorway and the passage beyond. Green lichen and weeds on the floor did not conceal spike tile traps, and a spinning log coursed into action above them on his approach. He paused for the proper moment to run out, passing under the log to the safety of a corner. He faced a darker corridor with an increased legion of rolling spiked logs. Taking up his courage once more, he ran expertly forward and tumbled beneath, his rate such that it carried him on across the suddenly springing spiked tiles and each spinning log as it fell. At the darker

end of the passage he saw, up a few stone steps, the dimly lit symbol on the wall where he might charge his Amulet. He stepped up and placed the talisman into the recess that seemed made for it. On replacing it to his body, again the bright light, a flash, and he was gripped by the force that bore him aglow into the air, and released him with energies immeasurably enhanced. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------He returned to the capstan in the chamber outside. He turned its handle as far as it would go. Water poured from a pipe in the wall close in front, filling the chamber floor around the plinth on which he stood, to spill out through channels into the garden below. He jumped down and left the way he had come. On jumping to the nearest stone spigot outside, he observed that water now flowed within it, a fine spray rising from a vent at his feet. It poured from its spout into channels below. He guessed that once oriented the other spigots would receive the flow in turn. He needed to return the capstan beside the broken weapon rack to a position that allowed progress back to the arch walkway. At this point Keepers hurried below to obstruct him. No matter, the Prince relished each chance for combat. He moved on, across the next spigot top to the other platform capstan, now without further use. He was soon back across the wall with the rope, clambering around the castle walls and the pillar to the final spigot. Water flowed up and off its extended arm. He climbed down off it to attend his opposition in the garden. The door at his exit was still closed. He had a last stage to complete the flow of water to the fortress. He rotated the central capstan again. The large and the small spigots turned about, channeling the water through gullies and spouts to the last spigot towers until it coursed down to the aqueduct far below. A slow steady torrent that, as the woman in red had promised provided power to some mechanism deep within the fortress. Somewhere inside, one of two steel bars retracted on a massive ornate iron door. His task now was to find and activate the second tower. He jumped down to investigate the path taken by the aqueduct, but his way was blocked by an iron gate. The switch to open it was on the other side. He turned back the way he had entered these Garden Waterworks. -- THE SECOND TOWER ----------------------------------------------------He made short work of the sentries posted at his return through the garden passage to an outdoor balcony. Though he was wary of invisible dropping Chameleons, he dealt with all as he saw fit. He turned quickly to negotiate once more the three fast rising and falling saw blades in his wall run path. He took his moment on the nearest blade's fall to run out and on to the long ladder for the platform below. Only a single saw blade reached down this far and it did not impede him.

He dropped down to a doorway where he reentered the castle. Keepers here were scarce worth the trouble of slaying and he ran on to a short ladder, means to reach the pressure lever on the wall behind. Rolling under the closing door, he made his way along a passage suspiciously quiet. As he emerged he found the expected guards and soon saw them off. "Fall back," shouted one, "send for reinforcements." Too late to save its own skin. "I did not expect this," it groaned. Still others were waiting on a balcony reached by bars, and the Prince drew his sword ready. He saw that his exit from the Garden Hall down below lay over ledges and platforms, and he would need peace to accomplish this. With a few deft strokes he finished the sentries. The place they seemed anxious to protect was a central division where he earlier entered this area. It led back to one portal chamber yet he was not finished here in the Past. He remembered the way back to the Central Hall was through the lower passage, and once there he could gain access to the second tower. He examined a wall bar that seemed to offer a means to swing across to other balconies at this high level, but was too high out of reach. Another gap in the balcony rail nearby led at a third division to a hanging rope and on to a far balcony. Here was a prominent wall switch and an over-ambitious sentry protecting it. Operation of the switch caused a block ledge to rise back on the central balcony, and somehow the Prince knew it would not rise overlong. He summoned the Eye of the Storm to work quickly back to it. An upward wall run off its top gave lift to the hanging metal bar before the block beneath retracted. The Prince had already moved on, hand over hand, to face a ledge on an opposite wall. He edged around this to an alcove, and gave thought to a hanging lever between. This dropped a ladder on an adjacent platform and he jumped back up on the ledges in his alcove to try to work over to it. Around a thick wall, he looked over to a mirrored ledge opposite, and could not help looking down to the ground very far beneath. There were the ledges and platforms he had previously negotiated - though at a different time to this - and his goal now was a far platform where, by edging on the last stone ledge, he dropped down to the ladder he had released into a gap. He slipped swiftly down it. "I was sure you could do better than that," came a watery mechanical voice. The Crow Master still watched his progress and unaccountably waited further test of his swordsmanship. The Prince had other matters to attend. He slid down a ladder to the ground. Keepers came hurrying through the garden to attack, but he tossed them one after another into the fountain pool. 'Blister' indeed. He made his way into the open door from the Garden Hall into the passage to the Central Hall where he judged he might best gain access to the second tower. This was the brightly sunlit plank passage. In this direction he had no need of the metal grille, since he could climb out of the plank pit at the other end each time. Tranquil sounds of birdsong and soft trilling insects hummed in his head yet he knew danger was never far on this island. His feet thudded across the boards as he made haste to his mission, and clambered up. As expected, at a turn of a corner came sword traps and the old enemy Raiders, easier than ever to dispatch now his skills had been sharpened. He arrived back in the Central Access Hall. A familiar figure greeted him

without much enthusiasm. "Oh, it's you," said the woman in red. "You seem surprised to see me." "Surprised only that you insist on prolonging the inevitable." "Why did you help me?" "I don't know," she sighed. "I guess half because you remind me of the Empress. Or who I wish she could be." "What do you mean?" "Like you, she knows her own fate. She has seen it in the timeline. But where you fight it, she has submitted. She accepts it. They say knowledge is power, but I say it is a poison. Knowing the date and manner of her own death torments her. The closer it draws, the greater her pain." "And you wish she would fight her fate, like me?" "Maybe it would give her something to live for." "You said that was only half the reason. What's the other half?" "I have known my whole life that what is written in the Timeline cannot be changed, yet something inside me wants you to succeed." "And do you think I will?" "No. But I admire you for trying." She handed the Prince her long carved sword. "Thank you," he responded, then, "Your name, I haven't even asked your name I've been so..." "It's Kaileena," she replied, and then almost sadly, "You should go, the Hourglass is more than half empty. You haven't much time." The Prince turned away. ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN L I O N S W O R D This mystical sword lets you store energy. Use it to unleash the energy for devastating attacks. ---------------------------------------------High on the wall opposite his last excursion the Prince could see an open doorway. He turned to the capstan device and rotated its handle to point to the small cog motif on the floor at its base. Column blocks ground up from the misty depths. He jumped to the water basin at one platform edge. He looked across to the doorway and judged he might reach a high column top if he first ran

out on a wall and leaped to a low column block at its foot. He had first to clear with his sword a weapon rack, but did not gather its contents. Armed with his new Lion Sword he had little need of another. Once atop the first column he made another fast run out over to ledges close by. Dust crumbled but he clung on, and then climbed to a height where a leap backwards brought him to the high set of column blocks. He scrambled up and found himself facing the open doorway. Not wishing any diversion he jumped over and hurried inside. Sword traps sprang into action. Before him was a heavy mechanical wall pressure lever, to which he lent weight. A gate just beyond the sword traps clanked open, though as he dropped from the switch it began to clank shut again. With the ability to slow Time at his disposal the Prince spent little effort in rolling beneath the swishing blades and on through the gate. A nimble wall run over a spike pit brought him to a candlelit dead end. Another mechanical wall lever proved simply to open the gate he had just arrived through, useful only for his passage back once his mission had been accomplished. Or such was his hope - he could not guess what peril lay ahead. Hearing an insistent squeak of mechanics from above, the Prince observed a high platform atop a candlelit alcove. He judged he might make his way upwards by his uncommon chimney ascent. Using facing walls of the alcove he made the arduous jumps back and forth to grapple onto a stone ledge at the top. This led onto a passage where could be seen a ladder protected by buzzing saw blades at its foot, sweeping methodically in opposition across his path. Still other squealing sounds signified further mechanical hazards overhead. He judged the moment to dash for the ladder. Along a passage at the top he first heard and then discovered slow pounding blocks hammering out from the walls. He made his way with some caution to a basin of water just beyond. -- CLOCKWORKS AND GEARS ------------------------------------------------The Prince descended a flight of steps to a wide wooden balcony, where waited three unwary Raiders. He swept them aside. The balcony overlooked an external part of the fortress. He could see thick towers and battlements. Slender bridges were strung between and the clouds rolled in the lowering sky above, lit with an eerie orange glow. At one edge of the balcony was a gap, where the Prince negotiated a series of wood ledges at the face of a running sluice of water behind a trellis screen. He dropped down to a narrow edge, where a sluice ran beneath metal grillwork. Beside it stood a lone Raider sentry. No sooner had he sent it squealing to oblivion than its fellow hurried to attack, soon joined by another, slithering down from a wall beyond. "Let's finish him!" These were cut down as the first, yet still others came, one on another to meet their end. The Prince kept only a little caution as he moved to a wide wooden stage, since now they came from every direction. The endless number proved little intimidation, since a single stroke or two at most was enough to finish each, running only toward their death. "Slaughtered," announced the Prince with grim satisfaction. "Father would be proud." This declaration of triumph too soon it seemed. Pounding footsteps came from an open doorway and a gigantic brutish creature appeared from

behind, a nightmarish towering hulk of squat rocky limbs and bare rounded head set in a thick collar. It came lumbering out onto the stage and shook its mighty fists with a roar. A heavy gate closed down behind and the Prince was alone on the stage with the beast. Despite its enormous size the Brute was quick to run and strike down as the Prince took up his courage and moved forward to probe for weakness. A foot stamped and shook the ground then a meaty hook floored him with a gasp. Rolling aside, the Prince ran between its legs to stay clear of the powerful arms. Temporarily searching for its prey the Brute swung its fists uselessly. The Prince was already at work behind, slashing his blade at the calves of the monstrous legs, spurts of blood spraying on each determined blow. The creature roared and turned about on the spot, stamping hard, but the Prince rolled between its legs once again and kept up his attack on its rear. Temporarily exhausted, the Brute went down on one knee. The Prince took this chance to jump onto its leg and up over its back. The head was sure to be a more taxing target. His sword hammered down on the thick round dome of its skull with a hollow ring at each strike, as if the creature were made partly of stone. It reached up for the pest, thick paws scrabbling to pluck the Prince away. To buy time he unleashed the Eye of the Storm and kept up his furious assault. Sparks, debris, and blood flew at each battered blow until, with both hands raised, he plunged his sword down hard to the neck of the beast and it shattered to dust with a last fading roar. He stood alone on the stage. Far below a fast flowing river was fed from tumbling spouts of water cascading off points about the fortress. Two Raiders appeared from an open doorway at the far side of the stage to break his reverie but these were as nothing after his titanic struggle with the Brute. He soon entered the doorway. Ahead a short flight of steps led only to a very solid wooden gate, roped and barred and hung with chains. In alcoves to one side, water splashed down in steady streams. Through a metal grille the Prince could see clunking wooden wheels, no doubt powered by the water streams, giving power to unseen machinery squealing and grinding somewhere close by. On one wall was a prominent switch. Activation caused a block to grind up out of the floor nearby. The Prince ran swiftly to clamber on top, then grabbed a stone ledge just above as the block ground back down beneath him. He was already on the next floor. Here was a stone chamber with an arched window through which daylight streamed. Water ran fast through sluices underfoot. Here too, thankfully, a fountain basin. Along the floor, sluices ran under grates, fine spray rising. To one side a gigantic fanned wheel ground fast and relentless across an open section of the wall. The Prince stepped out on a wooden jetty facing it and considered. "I've never seen such a large clockwork mechanism before. It's as if the entire tower were some tremendous machine. But for what purpose, I wonder?" He took his chance to leap forward through a gap in the wheel as it passed before him. He landed on another jetty and beam, from which he jumped off to a grated platform. He drew his sword, sensing danger. A Raider stood close in front of a locked door at one side. Others made their appearance behind it. With them came a strange creature the like of which he had never seen, a spiked beast in the form of a hideous mutated dog. At the behest of one Raider the creature scuttled down from a wall and threw itself at the solid wooden door. In an instant the demon

exploded, shattering the door and the expendable sentry behind it, allowing the other Raiders to swarm out. A ghastly circumstance in such needless sacrifice, the creatures of Sand bent to their purpose like selfless ants, but this attack at least easily repulsed. The Prince looked around his platform. There was nothing but a solid barred door beyond where the Raiders came from, and nowhere nearby that looked possible to reach with a jump. A Raider brandished a weapon on a balcony nearby, a switch on the wall behind him no doubt very useful. Even a jetty off his platform was not of sufficient elevation that he might reach it directly, and as such appeared useless. He must find another way. The Prince was drawn to a row of pistons, rising and falling off brick columns to one side. At the rise of the nearest he leaped out, clutching on, and being carried first up and then down he turned to the next nearest and jumped off at a point of elevation. This one was stationary but he waited at a moment the next rose, and jumped to it to cling on. This carried him at a height to land on the next, and in this manner he made his way across the room to a wood section built out from one wall. The balcony was close beside and its defender at his mercy. The wall switch moved the wood section further out along the wall. He wall ran back to it and grabbed hold of a shelf at its base. Hand over hand he made his way around to its other side, and climbed up. He heard a low rumbling that indicated to him that the switch he had operated was on a short timer. He lost no time in jumping off to swing from a bar and straight off it to land on a platform in one corner, even as the wood section ground back to position. On this platform was a capstan. A short turn on its handle saw a brick column grind and rotate to match. From one side a long bar protruded, and he faced this to the wall nearest to him. He jumped out to the bar and took pause to see before him a slowly rotating ring of wooden blocks at the center of a brick tower. Nothing could be gained by attempting to jump. A metal bar rose and fell in a housing off the wall just shortly in front. He waited on its fall and swung to it, being easily borne upwards and taking this chance to swing off, where he grabbed hold of a rail atop the brick tower, and hopped over with a short exhalation at this effort. With no chance even to recover his breath, a devil dog scuttled from a room nearby, others behind, growling furiously. He had shortly before seen how these spiked beasts exploded at will. What hellish mind had created them? He struck out with his sword, noting that each caught alight after a blow or two, whereon a third triggered an explosion that might grievously harm him on detonation. He kept moving and was sure to roll aside on a bounding assault, as they carried by instinct an urge to attack whilst even in flames. With all quiet he looked out from his high vantage point. This was the Mechanical Tower. In front of him, the wooden wheel he had jumped through rotated swiftly. Above him the wood and metal hands of a giant pendulum rocked back and forth. Below was the platform and pistons he had negotiated, and several other balconies and doorways could be seen up above. Various devices turned and cranked about the room. He could not discern the manner of operation but was certain there must be a central switch to direct its purpose to the massive iron door as Kaileena had promised. To hand was a hanging lever. This raised the platform below, to a height flush with his. He jumped down off the lever and over to it. In an instant he was joined by another pack of exploding Spike Beasts, roaring

and snarling. He ran quickly to the small jetty of the side rail and scrambled on top. He realized now that this was not so useless as he had thought, since at this height he could reach over to another jetty off an enclosed balcony opposite. A lone Raider diligently paced within, presumably on instruction of alarm for his approach, yet unaccountably oblivious to his hardly inconspicuous proximity. He jumped over and landed sure footed, though he had to catch his balance. He edged to a ledge and climbed up to another, working his way hand over hand along a narrow slot above. The sentry appeared still unwitting as the Prince dropped to catch on to an edge and run forward to deal properly with it for such careless inattention. A ladder to one side saw him back to the balcony wall, this time balancing along its top edge. He considered for one moment a walk out on a wooden spar, yet saw his better path would be back to the wall on a ledge. A drop shimmy shuffle around an awkward obstruction and he was soon hanging from a metal bar off one wall. He moved to face on to a slowly rotating wooden divider. He judged a moment that he might swing to this, grasp on and be carried about, to jump off the other side. He landed at a corner platform with an identical capstan to the one he had turned directly underneath. This lever changed the direction of a wooden block, rotating within the brick tower further along the wall. He jumped first to a bar and then waited his moment to jump to the rotating block. He grabbed hold of a squared section and allowed himself to be carried from one side of the brick tower to the other, at which he jumped off to another small platform in an alcove. Here was a floor switch. A section of wooden wall swung in a half circle to a point that he might jump to it from a nearby wall. Preventing easy operation of his plan, a Spike Beast waited on the wall between. Sensing he had little time to waste, the Prince struck out along the wall and slashed as he ran. The hellish creation plunged to its doom. The Prince continued with a leap and grabbed hold of the thin wooden section. It clicked back to its original setting as he anticipated. On its travel he clambered up and out to its end, in time to leap to a wooden ledge, and down to safe ground. Safe but a moment, as vicious Spike Beasts growled and attacked. A few quick slashes from his blade and they erupted in flames, he taking care then to roll at a safe distance as each exploded. They had been set to guard a hanging lever in a room here, at the very summit of the Mechanical Tower. It needed a wall run upwards to do it, but as the Prince gave his weight to this the platform at the center of the room rose up even higher. He ran out on the platform again and made directly for the rail across one side as Spike Beasts dropped down around him as before. He edged out on the wooden jetty at its middle, and where he had jumped through the sails of the giant wheel at its lowest, here he prepared the same leap at its height. Landing safe on a short beam the other side, he jumped sideways to another. Wooden ledges brought him up to a doorway. A blade trap sprang into action within, putting him at his guard. Light shafted through plank walls. Beyond the blade trap a wall block pounded slowly. The Prince realized that he could not simply dash past, since a pair of spinning spiked logs close behind barred his way. Instead he climbed quickly on top of the block and ran along the wall above the logs. The next pounding block he took at a dash. Spinning poles just beyond were routinely slipped by, and then a flight of wooden stairs gave a roll under two more. He was temporarily halted at a closed door, yet saw a switch high on a wall and climbed up on a ledge to set it off. He

dropped quickly and rolled through the now open doorway just as it slid shut. More wooden stairs led down to a basin at a turn, where he took grateful sustenance before moving to an open doorway at the bottom. A Keeper ran off at his approach, to the balcony room beyond. The Prince gave chase and confronted the coward. It beckoned with its hand and at once two companions spilled from a low platform behind him. An ambush! As the trio swarmed around he laid in at a whirl. All were soon finished. The wall switch they guarded unloosed a wooden block, rising from the floor against a wall. Too soon it retracted flush with the floor. He tried the switch again, and this time readied the Eye of the Storm, slowing Time such that he was able to scramble up the block and grab hold of a rope, to be left hanging as the effect wore away. He swung out and dropped off to a wooden walkway. "Stop him before he gets any further," came a familiar warning. "Do as you are told and kill him!" Two Keepers ran across a narrow wooden bridge to confront the intruder. "He's no match for me." "Few can match blades with me," the Prince said by way of contradiction. "Why do you bother?" They were soon enough cleared. He headed over the bridge, which forked left and right about a brick cistern streaming water from above. He splashed to the right and pulled up panting as his eye caught a figure moving somewhere among the slow grinding machinery high up above this Mechanical Pit. It was the sinister creature in black that had attempted his life with its axe. "What do you want from me?" he cried out to it. No answer. The apparition stared down at him for a moment then made off, springing from its high wooden walkway to a room somewhere beyond. The Prince faced more immediate danger. "Do not allow him to pass," came a call as more Keepers made themselves known. "Assist me!" He readied his sword and looked across a wall to a platform where the enemy waited. Between them, a large waterwheel creaked and groaned as it spun slowly from the wall. Its spokes passed at intervals and he judged the right moment to begin his run as the first appearance of one out of the wall. This had him passing through the center before the next spoke appeared to knock him to his death. The Keepers did little to hinder him clanking across their wooden platform to its end. Here was another slender waterwheel, through which he might repeat his daring wall run, but for the fact that it moved at a much swifter rate. He slowed Time once more. This had the benefit of allowing him not only to run through, but also to judge the correct moment to leap out off the wall to a slender column. This he did just as he touched on its shadow. He turned to face another column, and in his usual confident manner progressed off this to another and a fourth. From this last he came to an alcove, dimly lit, upon which stood a lighted capstan and a few scattered barrels. The barrels alas were all empty but the capstan set moving a

metal elevator platform, which he caught at the foot of its travel to be raised up on its return. This seemed to lead him nowhere, but looking up he realized that here was the high walkway on which he had last seen the sinister creature in black. He executed a nimble wall run to perform a swift chimney ascent. He grabbed hold of the edge of a wooden walkway opposite an open room. He ran to investigate the length of the walkway and was confronted by a soon exploding Spike Beast. He found there a hanging lever, which he was certain he had seen the strange masked creature put to operation. For what purpose he could not guess, but he ran in its tracks back to the open room where it made its escape. He would find it and face it, or die trying. As he burst into the room it seemed so, for there was no sign of the apparition, but the stone giant Brute smashed through a door to make its reappearance. He saw no escape and stood ready. It was a seemingly hopeless mismatch but he had faced it before and discovered that its apparent strength was as much its weakness, and used its awesome size against it. He rolled between its legs and slashed behind, repeating the tactic as the lumbering beast turned at a jump and crashed down. He rolled between its thick legs again and resumed his assault on the unprotected haunches. Once it was grounded, the Prince unleashed the power to slow Time, ran up on its back, and a dozen or fewer blows to its head consigned the Brute to dust. The Prince stood victorious at a large open fireplace, cheerily but incongruously alight. Stairs to the back of the room led to a wide pit he could not cross. An open door at one side of the room however gave onto a balcony, where he saw ahead a Spike Beast squat on the wall to obstruct him. He set out at a run, slashing effortlessly as he passed, to a rope, off which he ran on and jumped to a steady flowing watercourse. He took a little refreshment and considered his next move. The watercourse was set about a large central pillar, the cistern he had traversed from the bridge somewhere below. Wooden paddles swept through this at intervals, harnessing the power of the water to drive machinery within. He needed to negotiate these, and hopped over a low rail to splash through the shallow water. As each paddle approached he rolled under, first at one side then the other, in a zigzag pattern to suit their offset configuration. Around halfway he diverted, hopping another rail to a dry walkway leading off. At its end was a hanging lever. Operation opened a door on a platform close at one side. Keepers waited there. He dropped down off the lever and hurried back to the watercourse and under a few more paddles to safety. A swing off a wall bar to another saw him fly through the air to the platform ahead. He set about the Keepers emerging from the newly opened doorway. Close inside came the first of what he somehow expected were an array of traps for the unwary. He ran fast across soon sprouting tile traps topped off with a sprung spinning pole. After the safety of a corner he ran across more hidden spike tiles, and a spinning wall blade scarcely halted his run along the wall over a deep spike pit, where a rope helped him continue over a second blade to its end. A spiked pole at the next corner came with a block wall pounder close behind, and a second spiked log behind that if he should miss his timing at a run. He approached a second wall pounder a little further on with some caution. On its own not too much of a problem, the setting of a stationary horizontal spinning pole close behind necessitated not simply a dash but a wall run over it at a moment to suit. He took care not to overrun, as a third pole and wall

pounder were in evidence just past. This one at least required but a simple dash, to find what he hoped was the last obstacle: twin spiked logs rising in opposition above a spike pit. Simple. He fell with relief through a curtain of water that surely brought him to a portal chamber. This was not yet active, but the work of a few moments brought its reward. -------------------------Activate portal to Present -------------------------Brilliant liquid flowed to the spiral device set into the stone floor. The Prince stepped forward to return to the Present. ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN R A V A G E S O F T I M E This power lets you attack and quickly finish a fight with enemies. ---------------------------------------------The Prince looks out at the ruins of the portal chamber, now open to the skies. A full moon shines beyond its crumbling arches. From the white-hot molten sand, steam rises in the chill night air. He turns to attend his mission. Somehow he must negotiate a path through the Mechanical Pit. He makes his way back past spinning traps and wall pounders surprisingly still active though partially failed. He remembers to set himself a wall run past the stationary spinning log, and allows a long run up to achieve it. (Were one pole not stuck fast, there would hardly be room). He finds the last trap of saw blade and pit less easily negotiated in this direction. It requires a jump back off the rope to a ledge, and the Prince shuffles carefully to one end and drops down to clear an obstruction before he can climb out. The spike tiles likewise are still very much active, though to his advantage the final spiked log now moves with arthritic pace. He emerges on the platform overlooking the Mechanical Pit. This is in a sad state of repair, though evidently still active to a degree. His path lies back across the slow revolving wheels and gears around the walls, and along poles and platforms to an arched doorway on the far side of the room. Two Keepers wait on his platform here in the Present as in the Past but give now as then no effective resistance. The moment he clears them the Prince is menaced by Spike Beasts, as ever a demonic concoction of spikes, fangs, claws, and explosive. He runs to hang over the platform edge, where a hanging curtain gives an easy escape. He falls to a rickety wooden platform. At one side a wheel cranks now very slowly, much easier traversed than before to the row of thin columns. He sees that vegetation has broken through gaps in the walls; the very columns he clings to are broken. From the alcove at their end, its flaming capstan now extinguished, he observes the elevator platform is still dependable. He repeats his chimney ascent. "Don't you know, Prince," comes a familiar but unwelcome voice, "You can't kill a shadow."

Sure enough, a Silhouette occupies the fireplace room, in company of a trio of Keepers. The Prince keeps these pinned down between he and the shadow creature, once more taking satisfaction as they receive hits off its wildly flung daggers. Soon enough all in the room are as yellow dust. He moves to his previous exit, yet finds it solidly boarded up. At once Spike Beasts drop around the room and close in. He hatches a plan. As one comes at him he strikes, sending it smoldering to the corner by the door. He knocks over another for good measure. As is his hope, the resultant explosion blows the patched door clean apart, and the Prince hastens through. The rope on the wall is still there and he runs effortlessly across to drink deep at the same pool of water. The watercourse is now shattered and is fed only from a spout up above, pouring uselessly to the floor far below. The paddles are broken. He ducks under a stilled blade and hops over a gap in the watercourse. He can no longer continue around but jumps to where the hanging lever had been. A Keeper here is sent flying to the watery depths of the pit. The Prince drops down ledges to confront another hopeless sentry, and yet another across a now broken bridge. He must take the left fork this time. A hop through a waterfall brings him to a doorway where he hears the guttural shout of a Silhouette. A cast weapon takes care of that. In evidence here are certain wall traps, fallen to disuse, but at a turn in the passage beyond there are spinning log traps to negotiate. A few simple rolls down a staircase and he stands on a floor pressure switch to open a door. A cylindrical chamber houses a creakily rotating wooden contraption at its center. It also house Spike Beasts and Keepers. "Stand tall, human," one orders, "and meet your fate." Faced with so many in such a confined space, the Prince unleashes his latest power. The Ravages of Time sweep the chamber. Darkness falls in a second as fiery rings of orange light burst around the feet of the Prince. He whirls in a furious red haze from one enemy to the next, whipping his sword in a dazzling flurry of blows, wiping each confounded enemy to dust before the effect wears off, as quickly as it arrived. A useful resource indeed. He looks around. The door has shut firmly behind him and no pressure switch this side. A short ladder leads only to the planks of the revolving contraption that serve as the ceiling to the chamber. Machinery creaks and groans as the wooden trunk slowly revolves. Clouds of billowing condensation emit from vents in the brick wall at the chamber height but there is no apparent exit. Then he notices a hole through the revolving ceiling and scales the ladder to see. As the hole passes overhead he leaps back, and climbs up through it. Standing on what is now the revolving floor, he is carried about the chamber. At one side he sees a ledge, and jumps up to it. On the trunk of the wooden cylinder rotating at the room center can be seen a short ledge, and he makes a leap back to grab hold of it. Now turning with the trunk he jumps off once again to a higher ledge at the opposite side, then back once more to a ledge higher still on the trunk. Clambering round, the Prince comes eventually below a hole in the ceiling of this level too, where he is able to stand and jump back to climb up to another room. By the same method he ascends the revolving trunk once again until he

stands on its highest ledge. He passes a pressure switch on the wall. Judging his moment, he leaps backwards onto it, and then springs immediately back to his ledge on the trunk. A door has opened for the shortest of moments, and as he is carried around the room he sees his chance to leap off and dive through it. A water fountain waits as his reward. At the top of stone steps he hops over a low wall. In a chamber beyond three Keepers lie in wait. There does not appear to be any exit, merely a blocked door. Yet as he searches, the Prince is attacked by the guards. He makes use of a column at the center of the chamber to whirl and slice the heads off each as punishment for such temerity. Growling Spike Beasts descend to wreak vengeance, and here he sees the chance to repeat his trick of the fireplace room. He lures one to the door and triggers the necessary explosion, with quite the desired result. He jumps through the fresh blasted hole. He looks down from a fragment of platform block above a large room. Broken walkways and inactive mechanical parts are all around. Water spills down to the flooded floor. Devastation is everywhere; the mechanism housed here cannot possibly work. "This machine..." the Prince ponders. "It must activate the Mechanical Tower. I need to find a portal and hope that whatever disaster befell this place has not yet come to pass." He climbs a nearby wall as a chimney and hauls up on a platform. An assortment of enemies crowd around a huge stone column. He clears them and jumps up at a low wall to turn and mount the column block. He looks about and spots that vegetation has broken through one wall and left several wooden spars that can serve as ledges. He jumps over and scales them, clambers up on a short triangular ledge. He runs off to one side to another, and sees here a short ladder in reach off a wall run. He grabs to it and ascends. A small chamber leads to a platform. A waiting Keeper and his Blade Dancer companion fall to the Prince's sword. Seeing no clearer way ahead, he smashes loose barrels from his way and drops over a railing. A cranny lets him make way to a broken platform, where Blade Dancers descend. He sees no advantage in prolonged trivial combat and drops quickly down a ladder to one side. As bad luck would have it, about the only functional machine part in the room is a lever wheel that rocks in his path to a projecting beam. He swings around the end of his ladder to face onto it then times his leap. He lands safe and jumps off to a passage through a broken wall. It seems some traps are still active as a pair of saw blades spin busily up and down in his path. He slows Time to race over the blades and on to a hanging rope. He uses this to continue his run and jumps back off the wall to a ledge. He climbs up to look down on a cylindrical area with trouble waiting below. He runs first to a narrow triangular ledge and slips down a ladder to the unwelcome reception committee. With Time powers at his disposal, even with a second wave as the first is diminished, combat is brief. The Prince climbs a ledge at one side to look out across the Activation Room. There is a platform at center with a broken bridge to it. Weighted ropes hang uselessly from remnants of overgrown platforms. Water pours down everywhere. Far on the other side of the room the Prince can see the

facing platform to this, with its huge column block where he first ascended this room. He turns away, dispirited. Above him on his walkway ledge is a long cranny in the brickwork, which he uses to shimmy into an alcove. Thick tree trunks and branches have forced the walls here. He jumps to an opposite cranny, and drops to yet another, finally able to reach another platform and drop down. His progress is such that he might think himself invincible, yet as he turns a corner there is a loud thump from behind him as across the room a hulking agile figure drops to the central platform. The Dahaka lurks always here in the Present, and its leap to where the Prince stands makes its prey fearfully obvious. The Prince flees headlong. A chasm ahead he passes at a wall run, and around a corner soon after another. This has a hanging rope that the Prince uses quickly to fall onto a far platform. To hand is a curtain of water and he tumbles gratefully under. Through a process he could never explain the Prince understands the thwarted creature's distorted roar. "You are quick, mortal," the Dahaka allows, yet warns, "You cannot escape your fate." Try he must. The Prince springs up to a wall pressure switch and a metal grilled wall slides out behind him. With great presence of mind he jumps back and forth in a chimney ascent and catches hold of a ledge to a passage above before the grille wall retracts. Keepers and Spike Beasts met here are as meat and drink to him after his recent travails. Yet as he makes a short leap on, the Dahaka waiting below sees its chance to resume the chase. It springs up to touching distance, tentacles reaching through the very stones of the passage underfoot as the Prince makes a wall run ahead, and another with a rope on the opposite wall at a corner. He tumbles through a curtain of water as the thwarted Dahaka roars at his back. He has found the portal chamber in this part of the fortress. ----------------------Activate portal to Past ----------------------He runs over each of the four tiles on pillars. Sand pours to a stream. He can only hope that this will bring him to the Activation Room in the Past. But would he find it working? ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN N E W S A N D T A N K A new sand tank lets you stock more Sands of Time ---------------------------------------------The Prince found his abilities enhanced, and he would surely need every advantage to meet the challenge ahead. Leaving the portal chamber here in the Past he found the bare passage in which the Dahaka pursued him now lodged with traps: spinning logs, sword blades, wall saws and spike pits, all wearily familiar.

At a corner he was beset by exploding Spike Beasts, and rolled hurriedly through a small gap at the foot of a large mechanical cog. Keepers waited across a short gap. "Do as you are told," growled a frustrated voice, "and kill him." The Prince needed no such command, yet death came to his blade. Beyond this ineffectual pair the passage led to an edge too steep for a straightforward drop down. At this place he had moved the wall section to perform a chimney ascent when chased by the Dahaka. It might work as well as a descent. He hung off and jumped backwards to a wall, and began a slow methodical back-and-forth jumping motion to the ground. "Attack him now!" Trouble waited through a sheet of water at a corner of the gloomy passage. The Prince edged forwards and made out the form of two Keepers in company of an exploding pet, rumbling aggressively. He lagged behind the sheet of water, and as one enemy came at him it vanished with a shriek as it first touched the flow. The Dahaka was not alone in being unable to cross water. Even the Spike Beast detonated at brushing the seemingly harmless barrier, and the Prince was unashamed in saving his energies thus. On the other side, the water poured to a sluice under a metal grille, cascading in a fine spray to a spike pit below. The Prince ran out over this with the aid of a rope, remembering well how he had been forced to flee in the opposite direction by the towering beast that pursued him relentlessly in his Present. He would meet it one day and stand his ground. On his landing he noticed a rusted row of spike tiles lining each edge of the passage ahead. Two Keepers waited ready to challenge him. He could not fail to see a floor pressure switch close by, which proved to spring a deadly surprise on the hapless victims upon them. The Prince moved on over a short gap where he saw before him the platform overlooking the Activation Room. "Excellent. It seems to be in much better condition this time around. Now how do I get it working?" Of more pressing concern, on an opposite platform four-square stood the Brute, though out of reach tossing in his enemy's direction exploding Spike Beasts from a ready supply out of a pen at his side. To add to his troubles, the Prince was beset by Keepers hurrying to attack. He backed off to a corner, one ear to the roar of the Brute as it hurled another missile. This seemed as likely to do damage to the Keepers as to him, and he rolled away in good time. One beast was cast into a corner, where it exploded against a cracked wall. A suddenly opened hole revealed a secret passage hidden behind. The Prince ran to investigate. On his first hasty steps a wall block came pounding out in front. He gave pause, noting another close behind, and darted past to the safety of a corner, where bright daylight split cracked planks at an arch and shafted through boarded windows along the passage beside. The floor here was a carpet of spike tiles, and rolling logs scythed above. Taking stock of these, the Prince judged that he might roll at a dash and take but slight injury if a savage blade brushed him at speed. He always reserved the option of the Eye of the Storm that he might minimize such obstacles, but

his acrobatic athleticism was enough to carry him past impossible obstacles on which lesser men might founder. On the next turn a wall pounder rammed hard at intervals with a spiked log rotating in station behind, such that it stymied a straightforward run past. Instead, he chose his moment and mounted the pounding wall block, ran forward off it and over the log, to drop ready to run past a second wall pounder. Though pleased at his alacrity, the Prince was more circumspect at the next turn of the passage. Two more wall pounders, safely overhead, but twin lacerating poles at their end barred completely any chance to run by. The elements of a solution came to him, and he faced to a wall, his back to the hazards. On a moment when the nearest block smashed out from its wall, he ran up and sprang backwards to it, landing on top. He scrambled to his feet and ran on to jump straight to the next, on a slower cycle of destructive motion yet sliding away even as he touched onto it. A quick forward leap and he sailed over the barrier of logs and fell safe. Looking up he saw, as hoped, the faint glowing light of a mystical symbol at the passage end. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------Thin rays lightened the now silent passage as he returned to the Activation Room, where the Brute still hurled explosive creatures in his direction. The Prince had the inkling of how best to proceed, and made his way to the opposite side of his platform. He stood in front of what he now recognized as a boarded up door in the corner and waited for the Brute to throw another living ball of fire at him. He moved aside at the last moment, and a hole was duly blown through. In a small space the other side, a wall pressure lever was easily drawn down, at which a metal platform clanked into place close by in the main room. The platform was set within reach of a wall run, with the slight inconvenience of passing through the spokes of a slow moving wooden wheel turning from the wall. Though the Brute continued to cast in his direction exploding Spike Beasts, the Prince lost little time in clambering up off the metal platform to a walkway ledge. Close beneath was an alcove, above which was suspended a large stone block. Keepers waited around. The Prince dropped swiftly to clear the enemy from his way, and was if anything assisted by the occasional live missile that was flung to the alcove by the Brute from its position across the room. The Prince cleared a few loose pots from the foot of a ladder at the back wall of the alcove and scrambled up. From the top he managed to jump off to hold on to the edge of the large stone block, suspended from a rope and pulley. He shuffled to a side away from the open edge of the alcove, since the Brute showed no loss of enthusiasm for hurling explosive minions. The Prince was temporarily stumped, for although he could well see a high ledge that he might use to effect progress away from this area, it was clearly too high out of reach. All at once a missile struck the far side of his refuge, which explosion fractured the stone block and released a heavy weight at its base. The remainder rose on its pulley, and by the fortuitous assistance of the Brute the Prince found it now possible to spring backwards to the high ledge. This was a narrow triangular nook,

which seemed familiar to him from his progress through this room in his Present. Certain now of his path the Prince ran off at one side to an identical ledge, and from there to a section of ladder that led as before up into a small room, which with a certain relief he found to be empty. The room looked much as he remembered. A capstan was now centered on the wooden platform atop the short staircase. A lightly flaming brazier on top cast spidery shadows to the floor. He rotated its extended handle fully. Out in the Activation Room a large wooden cog slid out from one wall. A metal platform clanked down to lock in place above it. The Prince moved to the edge of his platform, and cleared loose pots and barrels from his way. He could see the metal platform just ahead but to get to it he had to time his wall run out over a metal shutter that clanked steadily up and down across his path. On the right moment he ran out over this and landed safely on the platform before the shutter rose again. The other side of the metal platform was found the same obstacle, as easily traversed. He cut through a faint cloud of steam from a wall vent on his way to landing on a narrow ledge, curving round what seemed to be a turret built into one corner. He followed its extent. Beneath him wooden cogs rotated in opposition. By yet more careful timing he dropped first to cling onto one, and as it carried him around the turret dropped lightly to the next, which carried him back round to drop off to a convenient pole just beneath. He turned and swung off to another pole, then another and another and another, one to the next in a fluid movement. Mere child's play. He landed on a short platform to one side of an identical recessed area to that he had recently left, with its weighted block contraption at center. It had too an identical set of waiting demons. "On your knees, dog," one commanded. Never. He knew what he had to do, and cleared the space before finding a ladder to the block. As before, the Brute obliged him by tossing a live bomb to his direction. The massive stone broke apart and as the weight fell the top section rose on its pulley as hoped. The Prince shuffled about the edge to align with the lowest triangular niche, jumped back and pulled up. The Brute could do little to harm him up here but continued his angry roar nevertheless. A now practiced wall run to another niche and a run out to a ladder brought him up through an open trapdoor to another small chamber, this too unoccupied, and another capstan close by. It moved a second huge wooden cog out from a wall in the Activation Room. At this, Spike Beasts dropped to menace him in the confined chamber space. He ran out over a sliding plate to a metal platform over the second cog, and moved on across an identical sliding plate to a recess containing a third capstan. This released a third cog to the center of the room. All the cogs now interlocked. He had worked his way right around the room at its uppermost level. He ran out to a planked metal platform extending to the middle. At one end an open window beckoned. He dropped through and drew his sword. On a platform to one side paced a sentry, seemingly oblivious to the Prince's entrance. He jumped to surprise the Keeper and finish it, and then descended the ladder being so ineffectually guarded. On dismounting to a short platform, his first instinct was to drop down to the ground, but he judged it too far for safe landing. Caution and experience suggested he establish any alternative before risking action. A similar platform faced him, and this seemed to meet a short crack around one wall. He ran across

to investigate. Still the angry Brute hurled missiles somewhat uselessly in the Prince's direction. As he dropped to the crack in the wall, he saw the hulking monster on its side of the room, no doubt still determined to assault him, still flinging unfortunate pets from an inexhaustible supply. He shimmied out of eyeshot and dropped to a lower ledge, and then to the ground. A platform had raised up across the center of the room, linking as one the Prince's platform and that of the Brute. His opponent showed no sign of leaving its side. He would have to be dislodged. As the Prince ran onto the central platform, the Brute cast down its toy and lumbered forward to meet its new plaything. The weight of the massive creature at once caused the platform to sink. There was no escape for the Prince now. He dodged nimbly between the Brute's legs and began his trusted tactic of slashing behind it. The giant seemed not to have learned and swung its mighty fists at thin air around it. The Prince managed ably to stay at its back as it leaped and turned to stamp down with a roar. He soon brought it to its knees. Using the Eye of the Storm then, he jumped up on its back and struck hard blow after blow to the back of the thick rounded head. His blade clanged and knocked as the infuriated Brute tried to throw him off, too clumsy to reach back and pluck him away with the stricture of slowed Time upon it. With a final two-fisted blow from the Prince's sword, in seconds it was gone in a crumpled explosion of light that faded to mere yellow dust. With the weight now lifted the platform rose up again. The Brute had been guarding a massive clockwork mechanism. A dozen huge wooden cogs turned one against another, to what purpose he could not tell. At the center of each cog was a spindle, which the Prince judged might serve as steps to a trapdoor he could see above. An upward run on a brick wall and jump back brought him to the first spindle, and an easy swing off to a beam formed by the second. He needed to time his jump carefully from that. Though his direction was clear, a swinging pendulum arm threatened his way. An acrobatic leap, swing, bounce and swing saw him poised on another wooden beam, now high above ground. A second pendulum barred his way at intervals, and he made sure to edge out on the beam as far as he could that he might best avoid it. In moments he had jumped out to a hanging ladder. He swung around it and up through the open trapdoor. He was on a high platform, a closed door at its middle. He looked out across the Activation Room at a platform at the center of the three huge wooden cogs he had released. A capstan sat on it. Though there was a break in his balcony rail facing over, there was no way to leap to the platform. To one side where the Prince stood was a hanging lever. It took a run up the adjacent wall to gain height to reach it, but as the Prince gave his weight to the lever it dropped down. Extending out from his balcony a metal walkway reached to the central platform. As he ran eagerly to it Spike Beasts landed in his way. He knocked every one flaming to the edge, into exploding oblivion, and then lent his shoulder to the capstan handle. Along with the sound of a door opening, the three massive interlocked cogs around him spun slowly to action. As they turned they moved gears and hidden machinery. The last of the steel straps barring the massive door he had seen in the Hourglass Chamber retracted, and it slowly swung

open. "I fear my time is running short," the Prince mused. "While I rush about activating towers, no doubt the Empress is busy creating the Sands." He had to make haste back to the Hourglass Chamber and the Throne Room beyond. Through the now open door on the balcony platform ahead was a dusty stone passage, where at a corner a large waterwheel gave pause for a carefully timed run through its slow turning spokes. Up a flight of wooden stairs he met a second wheel, similarly negotiated but with an athletic back jump off the wooden plank wall at its far side to land safe at the head of more wooden stairs. At the foot of these the Prince was beset by a pack of growling Spike Beasts. He dealt with as many as he found sport for his blade and moved on to a sudden edge in the passage, where a series of hanging red curtains brought him swiftly to ground. Yet more wooden stairs and more hanging curtains led soon enough to the floor of a small empty chamber. As the Prince emerged through a doorway, the clanking machinery all around looked very familiar to him. He was back in the Mechanical Tower. Here was a hanging lever he had already used to raise its central platform. He wasted no time in running onto it and down the ladder in the gap at its middle. The massive wooden wheel cranked swiftly as ever, and with a practiced step the Prince edged along a wooden jetty to face another beyond the spinning sails. A nimble jump and he was through. -- THE DOOR IS OPEN ----------------------------------------------------As the Prince lowered himself off the side of the room beyond he heard a savage animal sound somewhere close by. Well he remembered the open stage outside where he first met the hulking Brute, and here in endless resurrection it waited once more. It seemed to the Prince that he need scarcely trouble to best the creature yet again, and (his way forward being otherwise clear) simply skirted the lumbering beast to the relative safety of the narrow edge of the platform by the underfoot sluice, and on up the series of wooden ledges where he first lowered himself to this area. A trio of waiting Raiders fell at first touch of his powerful blade, and the Prince moved on up steps to where he recalled a set of pounding wall blocks posed a barrier to the sluggish or unwary. He slipped easily between. At the passage end he looked down to a gap with a ladder. He observed at its foot twin grooves, across which a pair of saw blades squealed and scythed. He slid partly down, and jumped over them. At a platform edge he ran out to a hanging curtain and slid easily to the floor. Across a spike pit was a door, and behind him a wall pressure lever. He remembered his hope that he might use this on his return. The gate was on a short ratchet and seemed likely to close before he had negotiated the spike pit with a jump, and so prove an impassible barrier to an ordinary man, but he had at his disposal the power to slow Time. An added benefit in this was that two rotating sword traps beyond were more easily negotiated at very slow speed. He found himself back in the Central Hall, where he had last seen Kaileena. Despite her doubts he had accessed the towers and completed his task. The Throne Room was open. It was time to meet his appointment with the Empress. He jumped across a set of columns to the central platform, and down to its surface. He turned, ready to jump across to the fountain

basin at the head of the passage to the Hourglass Chamber when without warning a terrible demon dropped down and barred his way. "The Dahaka! It has learned to find me in the Past." As the shocked Prince prepared to face his relentless enemy, the sinister masked creature appeared behind him and advanced with menace. "I don't have time for this!" said the Prince. The Dahaka leaped towards the pair of them and bellowed as it landed, shaking its fists. The Prince ran headlong, past the masked creature. The Dahaka snaked out its tentacles. As the Prince fell with a cry, it snatched up instead the mysterious being, lashing it through the air and absorbing it into its belly with a flash of light and mighty roar of triumph. Temporarily sated, it bounded away with a growl, leaving the Prince to make sense of what he had seen. -- THE EMPRESS ---------------------------------------------------------He negotiated again the array of traps that led to Kaileena's Hourglass Chamber, impenetrable defenses against lesser men but a fitting test of his athletic ability. In no time he rolled beneath a closing door. The Prince crossed the stone floor of the Hourglass Chamber. Five of the nine symbols on the design centered on it were illuminated. He guessed now that these bore relation to his visits to the mysterious glowing device at each secret passage end to lend charge to his Amulet. When last he had come here there were but two symbols lit up, and he had not made connection with the two passages he had discovered by then, but with a simple calculation he judged that he had indeed visited five separate devices by now. This meant that, by the design on the floor, four others lay undiscovered. He would remain alert to the possibility. He stood before the Hourglass. Footsteps clicked behind him. Kaileena gazed too at the steady running Sands. "Time is running low," said the Prince. "You ready?" She made no answer. He turned away. She followed. "I've been thinking, Kaileena. There is little for you on this Island. And there will be less still once I've stood before your mistress." They mounted the curved sweeping steps to the Throne Room. "Come with me to Babylon!" he urged. "You'll have a chance to begin a new life, free from the evils of this place." She looked aside and spoke quietly. "I am sorry Prince, but I cannot take you up on your offer." Kaileena walked away through the massive doors to the Throne Room. The Prince stood grimly alone. He took last refreshment at a water basin to hand, then followed after Kaileena to seek audience with the Empress of Time. Not without some apprehension. The Throne Room was a vast chamber. High tiered balconies admitted dim light. Gigantic statues of a winged beast of some kind towered against

the walls and at the middle of the room were column spires of burning incense. A long red carpet led up to a large throne canopied beneath huge velvet drapes. Kaileena stood alone. "Where is the Empress?" demanded the Prince. "Where are the Sands?" Kaileena made no reply but walked calmly to a far wall between two of the gigantic statues, where she depressed a lever. The massive door behind the Prince crashed shut. He turned, confused and angry. "What are you doing? You've trapped us in here!" Kaileena walked across the room. "I am sorry, Prince, but only one of us can cheat Fate today." She stepped to the throne, and took up weapons laying wait on armrests either side. A pair of cruelly hooked swords that fitted to her arms like claws, hideously suited to their purpose. She imperiously brandished the blades, crossed above her head. "You..." gasped the Prince, "Are the Empress!" She turned with a smile of triumph and spoke without emotion. "I told you to leave, and yet you kept coming back. I began to wonder..." There was menace in her words as she advanced purposefully. "If you could change your Fate, perhaps I could change mine!" She leaped at him. With no other recourse, the Prince drew his sword. The Empress soon proved an able and determined opponent. Like the girl in black she was quick to block and made lightning attacks that dealt rapid damage. She effortlessly swept him aside when he held his block overlong, forcing him onto the offensive. He summoned at once the Eye of the Storm to slow Time sufficiently that he might limit her attack while he probed for weakness. "Fool! I am the Empress of Time, I know your every move before you do," she said as she held weapons aloft and blocked him. "I will always be one step ahead of you, Prince, you cannot harm me." Their weapons clashed again, and again as he rolled and dived in, trying his best to subdue her. "You are wasting your time," she assured him. "I can see the future." They locked swords. Grimly the Prince used all his strength to force her back. To his astonishment she now retreated and summoned a ball of energy that grew up beneath, raising her in a whirling vortex. "You shouldn't have come here," she warned. "I have seen your future, and it does not look good." On those words a pair of ethereal figures emerged. Tall, red-robed, armed with swords, each eerily reminiscent of the Crow Master but deadlier yet. They glided silently toward the Prince and together dealt swift lifesapping blows in violent sweeping attacks. The Prince reeled back and searched about for some advantage over the towering apparitions.

He looked to the ring of slender columns at the center of the room. Backing to the nearest, the Prince lured the hovering demons in his path. He used the column to deliver a swinging attack, rocking the stunned creatures to a halt, then whirling to deliver a second blow. Backing off to the next column before they recovered, he found if he were quick enough that he could repeat the trick as many times as necessary to send each one shrieking and shrinking to an intense ball of Sand, which had the benefit of replenishing his meager supply. In their wake each creature left also its weapon, which the Prince wasted no time in snatching up to cast at the Empress as she descended to meet him once more. "Ha ha! It will take more than a simple sword strike to penetrate my defenses! Time heals all wounds." He slowed Time once again to repeat his attack. The Empress of Time moved too swiftly if he did not, vanishing in an instant to reappear beside him in a sudden assault. As he slowed her to manageable motion she raged in fury. "Do you think your powers are greater than mine?" His skill with a sword matched her at least. The Empress broke away from his determined attack. "I had hoped the Dahaka would kill you," she spat sharply. "I had hoped Shahdee could keep you from the Island, or the Towers would finish you off." She had been a step ahead of him all along. That he might learn his folly she added a betrayal. "I even cursed the sword I gave you. And yet you did not die!" She flew at him with a cry of rage. He blocked with a clang of steel and kicked her to the carpeted floor. "Why would you do this?" "I've already told you, I have foreseen my future to die at your hands. But like you," she said as she regained her feet, "I've decided to change it." This last she cried out as a threat, and flew at him again. He jumped nimbly in vaulted attack, which had served him so well against almost every enemy. His speed caught her off balance and he slashed as he landed, again and again. It was a risky strategy should he misjudge the moment and catch her savage reply. "You shouldn't have come here," she gloated. "You will not leave this island alive." "Nothing good will come of your sacrifice," offered the Prince. The Empress was not to be dissuaded. He redoubled his efforts and got in a series of heavy blows. "Impossible!" she raged. "How could I have failed to see this coming? I

can see the future, but I did not see this." Furiously she rose once more on her infernal vortex of brilliant light. Once more the Prince was confronted by two slender gliding minions. This time he moved forward to preempt the attack, and singled out the nearest to vault over. It took but a few accurate slashes to send it fading to yellow dust, and he dealt similarly with the other. Confounded at the efficient dispatch of her minions, the Empress descended to settle things herself. The Prince was ready. Using his newly replenished stock of Sand he unleashed the Eye of the Storm and moved swiftly, vaulting and slashing, rolling and diving, somersaulting away to run in again, blocking her retaliation and pressing, pressing, pressing, until she was beaten back. "I mean you no harm, Kaileena," he panted, "but I must finish this." She rushed at him again. As they flew past each other their raised weapons clashed for the last time. His blade struck home. The Empress staggered to a halt. "You are a fool, Prince," she cried, through pain and breathless anger. "No matter what you do, you still fail." She sank to her knees behind him and the weapons fell from her hands. "Just as I have tried, and I have failed." The Empress collapsed. The Prince turned solemnly. "I am sorry, Kaileena." He walked wearily to her fallen body. Before he reached it, an intense ring of yellow light burst from her, building in an instant to a blinding flash that radiated across the Throne Room, knocking him back and shaking the very foundation of the Island fortress, which fell all at once to a dark shadow. As the shockwave hit, the ground trembled and shook. As the Prince groped to his feet, a statue at one side of the Throne Room crumbled. A passage was revealed. The Prince of Persia stood victorious. He had defeated the Empress of Time before she could create the Sands in the Hourglass. He could do no more. "I must return to the Present." -- THE LONG WAY HOME ---------------------------------------------------Outside the fortress walls in his own time the weary Prince jumps down off a rock ledge with a heavy sigh. "Despite all the warnings that I would fail, I have vanquished the Empress and prevented the creation of the Sands of Time. I have defeated the Dahaka and Fate itself." He looks up at the desolate fortress. Wind moans about its colorless walls. "It's time to find a way off this rock." The ground trembles. Heavy menacing footsteps come from behind and vision

fades to gray. Is it possible..? "No! No, no, no!" At his back the fortress wall is smashed from within. The Dahaka emerges with a roar. A hand grabs behind him as the Prince scrambles back onto the rock ledge in an effort to escape. Too late. A leathery tentacle seizes his foot, sweeps him back, whirls him through the air and casts him down inside the broken castle walls, where he lands heavily. With barely time to think he takes to his heels. The Dahaka roars in fury as it crashes after him, tentacles licking and probing through the very stone beneath his feet as the Prince races down a passage. He jumps a gap, runs up over a wall across a larger one, falls and turns a bend to run over another. He leaps and grabs blindly at metal bars, swinging to a crumbling path where, with a desperate cling at a rope he hauls on over a pit. His scampering feet activate a wall switch and somewhere below a door slots open. He seizes on a hanging red curtain, slides to the floor. A doorway is open before him and he dives through. A heavy metal door slides shut, the Dahaka hammers violently against it. "What is this?" the stunned Prince asks himself. "I saw the Empress die, she never created the Sands. There should be no Dahaka." Stone crumbles from above, the Prince shields his head. The hammering at the door stops and footsteps recede. He is trapped but mercifully alone. He looks around, brow knit. "And yet it still pursues me. What has gone wrong?" He thinks again of his clash with the Empress. The blinding flash that erupted from her body - had the Sands been within her from the start, to be released only on her death, spilled to the Throne Room floor, yet to be collected into the Hourglass? If so, then they had been created as a consequence of his actions! The terrible realization hits him. "I am the architect of my own destruction." Light swirls from a high skylight. The Prince sees only darkness. He slumps to the ground, despondent. Trapped and alone. "So this is it. What is written in the Timeline cannot be changed." The Dahaka hammers on a metal grille at the skylight overhead. The Prince looks up, and gets defiantly to his feet. "Come for me, then!" The Dahaka moves away. The Prince stumbles wearily to a wall. It is covered with strange hieroglyphs. His thoughts are in turmoil. "In my quest to destroy the Sands of Time, I have been the one to create them!" As he touches the wall, his hand seems to pulse with light. The hieroglyphs are illuminated like pages in a book. Ghostly images come to him. Soldiers and an hourglass. The words in blue light form a narrative. "Let all who read this know the courage and valor of those who fought and fell for the Maharajah."

One soldier puts a hook to a chain on the hourglass, is about to drag it down. "We sought the power of the Sands of Time. Most found only death..." An assassin sweeps his sword behind, and strikes off the soldier's head. "...myself among them." As the assassin stands over his victim, a shadowy figure materializes behind and slays it. The figure rips a mask from its face. It is the soldier. "But the Mask of the Wraith gave me a second chance to travel back through time and change my fate." The Prince looks up, not fully comprehending. "This mural shows the impossible..." He considers for a moment. "'But the Mask of the Wraith gave me a second chance'. There may still be hope." The Dahaka smashes against an outside wall, set to break through the thick stone. The Prince has new resolve. He must find the mask and use its power. "You had your chance to take me," he declares. "You won't get another." He is in a large dusty chamber of pillars and ledges, partly ruined. At its center stands a tomb enclosed by four thick stone columns. High at points around the room can be seen passage entrances but no means to reach them. At one end of the chamber a shallow flight of steps lead away, flanked at the foot by large statues of heads of fanged beasts, their open mouths lit by flaming lanterns. With no other exit, the Prince explores along the steps. An iron gate bars a passage at one side, so he moves on. Heavy footsteps come from behind, and the iron gate is punched aside as the Dahaka bursts through with a roar. With the beast at his back the Prince runs ahead to one side along a wall, and jumps back to a broken platform. He smashes barrels with his sword and runs on through the space, jumps to a bar and swings over a pit to another and another, clings to a ledge and pulls up. With horror he sees a hanging skeleton in a torture device. A place of terror indeed. He mounts a wall, swings from a rope to continue his run, jumps back to another broken platform, stumbles to a barrel that blocks his run to a wall. He breaks it and scurries out on the wall to jump back to a platform ledge. He scrambles to his feet, tentacles of the Dahaka breaking through walls and the floor around him as he flees desperately to some place that the beast cannot follow. Ahead is a hanging lever. The Prince jumps to it and swings off, tumbling through a doorway as water is released. The enraged Dahaka is left close behind, unable to pass. "Disrupt the Timeline no further," the distorted guttural threat in the Prince's ears. "You will be removed!"

He catches his breath. He is back in the room where he started, but now on a platform high above. There is no obvious way down. He jumps to a nearby stone block that forms a platform high above the ground. The Prince notices the fortress symbol on a curious smoothly carved stone set into an arched niche, at its front a bar handle. He pulls the carved stone from the wall. Its weight causes the stone block on which he stands to sink to the ground. As it falls, a huge stone block rises between four pillars at the center of the room. High at the opposite side of the ruined chamber the Prince sees two similar devices in pools of light from above and wonders if he might plot a route to them. He hops down. The huge stone block at the center of the chamber is too high to climb. He must wait to discover its purpose. He runs back up the steps. The way ahead is now blocked by fallen masonry in the wake of the Dahaka. The Prince turns instead to the passage on the right. He must not get lost in these Catacombs. Ahead is a gap, mist rising from its depths. A simple wall run carries him across but at once he senses the imminent reappearance of the Dahaka. He runs out on a wall and leaps to grab a pole sticking out. In his practiced manner the Prince swings safely to another, and from that to the ground. No time for pause, the roar of the Dahaka very close behind. Another gap brings a snap decision - the route branches left and right. Without hesitation the Prince goes to the left. By a process he could not easily explain, the growling noises of the beast have ominous meaning. "No-one escapes the Dahaka." Yet he must try. Rubble blocks his way but a low arch admits a running roll. Tentacles reach out from the wall as he sprints forward along a wall, grabs a rope to help him on his way and leaps for a bar, swinging to pull up on a ledge. It seems a dead end, but with presence of mind the Prince arranges himself between facing blocks and begins a swift chimney ascent. The thwarted Dahaka beats his chest close beneath. At the top, another collapsed column forms a low arch in his way and the Prince rolls under and on without hesitation. Another dead end! Another frantic chimney climb, back and forth between facing blocks as the Dahaka closes in down below. He runs on to a very long chasm, spots a rope on the wall, runs to it and on to another without break in his stride. A leap to a bar and off to snatch one beyond and he flies through the air to a ledge. There are two gaps ahead, the first taken at a leap and the second a wall run. The Prince has no time to think, he must simply keep moving. Tentacles sprout from the stones at his feet, reaching and probing. A hanging curtain is escape and the Prince leaps to slide down. Collecting himself at the bottom he runs off to one side, ducks through another pile of rubble and along a wall to leap out to a broken platform. The roar of the Dahaka is close by as he stumbles to yet another low arch of rubble and a leap immediately after. He finds his fingers clutch to a hanging lever, from which he swings to fall breathlessly through the doorway now protected by water in front. Once more the Dahaka stands furious beyond. Nearly exhausted, the Prince can barely jump up to grab a ledge above his head. He shimmies to a platform and hauls up. Here is another smooth carved stone with the fortress symbol on it. Certain of his plan, he pulls its handle.

Once again the heavy weight causes the column block on which he stands to slowly descend, it grinding downwards as the huge block at the center of the chamber rises higher. He hops down with satisfaction. He sees a doorway of water on a high ledge opposite the top of the block and understands their relation. He is certain that it will lead him from this place. There is one more carved stone to be dragged from its niche. The fork in the passage will surely lead him to it. He must face the Dahaka again. Once more up the steps and his first run on the wall across the passage beyond has the Dahaka on his scent. The jump across bars is familiar to him and he hops sure-footed across the pit to the fork in the passage ahead. He runs hard to the right this time, his thoughts on the hazards he had faced at the left. He steels himself for the trials ahead, jumps over a pit to a hanging lever and straight through a doorway of water to the safety of his chamber. It's about time he caught a break. He runs up a broken wall to a ledge, and from that to another, and another still higher. On this he moves sideways to drop down on a block column with a carved stone in its niche. He pulls as before. This time as he descends he notices the sheer surface of the central stone structure become studded with ledges. A clear way ahead. He circles the block, finds one ledge lower than the rest, makes his way swiftly to the top, dust loosened at each step. He sees as he climbs that the pillars risen from the ground are set with human bones. At the center of the platform is a sarcophagus with sculpted warrior and sword. Lit brands crackle among moldy cobwebs. Nearby is a curtain of water across a beckoning doorway. A leap to a hanging bar, a swing, and he is in. He finds himself in a narrow passageway. On his first step forward the Dahaka bursts from the stone sarcophagus on the platform behind him and roars his distorted threat. "Where is he?" Safe behind the curtain of water. To his relief, the Prince finds a basin to refresh himself. -- YOU CANNOT CHANGE YOUR FATE -----------------------------------------With the possibility that he may get a second chance to put right what has gone wrong, the Prince determines to return to the Throne Room in the Past. He must find a Time portal. The passage ahead lies somewhat in decay. Water pours to a deep pit, which he passes at a run to a slender beam, hung with vegetation and sprayed by rivulets off the rocky walls. As he edges to firmer ground the Prince becomes aware of Keepers laying in wait. "Do not allow him to pass." Perhaps these had become more determined or his own abilities blunted by his recent exertions, but the Prince finds it harder than before to subdue these attackers. With numbers against him, he tosses his secondary weapon at one to keep it at bay, and vaults the second to fling it over the edge of the passage. Turning now to the other, he grabs it in a tight headlock, where despite its furious struggle the wretch cannot escape. The Prince applies force and with a crunch of cartilage snaps its worthless neck. He hastens away to the passage end, where a run out on a wall brings him to another section and two equally troublesome opponents.

There seems little to be gained from prolonged combat and the Prince hurries to his path. On a slender beam of stone he takes stock. A misted passage ahead is scarce lit by shafts of light that glitter on water cascading to a torrent far below. He continues a precarious route along beams and jetties until he faces a narrow passage packed with vigilant sentries. "Stand tall, human, and meet your fate." There are too many to fight in a confined space. He launches the Breath of Fate to cast all to the ground, then runs to a short ladder and scales it to another ladder behind. At the top of this a leap backwards and he clings to a niche in the stone walls, which he uses to shuffle to a doorway. Inside, a rough passage. In the close atmosphere leaves drift from overgrowth to the earth-strewn floor. Dim light penetrates grillwork windows. Through a narrow slit the Prince looks down on a chamber, a raised pedestal at its center. Something glitters upon it. "A sword," he observes. "Now how do I reach it?" His throat dry from the stuffy air, the Prince drinks deep from a basin. -- A THRONE AND A MASK -------------------------------------------------As he passes through a series of very small rooms of crumbling brick, the Prince realizes with a little trepidation that these are prison cells. There is danger here yet, and on instinct he draws his sword. At a last broken wall waits a Keeper. A masked assassin in female form joins it in the open passage beyond. Though noticeably scantier clad, this creature is such as the acrobatic Blade Dancers he has had the misfortune to encounter so often before. They make the same Siren plea. "Don't you know not to strike a woman?" He is not swayed by base trickery. This perverted demon is hardly a helpless female. It proves quick to strike at a moment he lets his guard down, and soon sweeps him off his feet even should he block. "Oh yes, this position suits you," the voice mocks as the creature stands over him. "I LOVE being so close to you." He deals with her in familiar style, yet this creature too is made of sterner stuff than his enemies before. Though his determined assault at length prevails, as another falls to take its place he decides to dodge past. "You aren't worth my time." He balances out on a beam to a room beyond. It crumbles at his footing. He turns to one side and edges cautiously. Another Assassin appears to block his progress. "Come closer Prince," she purrs, "I want to taste my victory." He jumps at the precise moment of her gymnastic strike, sweeps his own weapon, and clears the creature in an instant. He turns onto another stone beam, and must repeat the trick as a second maiden of damnation

confronts him. At the relative safety of a platform, he looks down through mist hanging in the stifling atmosphere of the room, open to the elements and hung about with sinuous weeds. The sword waits on its pedestal below. He edges out on another beam and again this one cracks and rumbles to the ground. With great daring and no other option he leaps to an unbroken section of beam. It holds at his footing though partly breaks away, and he steps quickly to another small platform. A swish of a weapon drawn alerts him to an Assassin waiting on an adjacent platform. "Poor Prince," she mocks. "Come to me!" Not one to let a lady down, he runs out with sword at the ready, strikes as if by instinct on passing, and the would-be impassable object falls to dust. He drops onto her platform. From here he sees another and runs easily to it. A red curtain seems not to have decayed beyond an ability to hold his weight and he runs to it, falls to its end and springs back to another, and drops at its length to the floor. Sections are broken across to an abyss. The Prince steps confidently for the sword. He is about to reach for it when a roar from one corner announces arrival of the Dahaka from the depths below. The nightmarish creation leaps and smashes down close by. The impact sends the sword plunging to the abyss. The vengeful beast turns attention to the Prince. "Your end is near," its distorted voice booms. Its quarry runs through an open door ahead and flies down stone stairs. With no time to look or barely to think the Prince turns at the foot and runs out on a wall over a bottomless pit. Finding his feet on the other side he keeps downward, threads crazily left and right and left again among barrels, the Dahaka close behind smashing his way through. "Come to me," it seems to beckon. "Come to your death!" The Prince dare not pause in his desperate flight. At another blind turn he runs out once more across a broken section of the passage and dives headlong through a blessed curtain of water ahead. He has found at last a portal chamber. Once activated, he can return to the Past. ----------------------Activate portal to Past -------------------------------------------------------------------YOU GAIN W I N D O F F A T E This power lets you do a stronger ground attack than the Breath of Fate power. Use this power when the Prince is surrounded by enemies ---------------------------------------------The passage was now brightly lit. Across a pit ahead, two spiked poles

slid fast back and forth where he must land. As they moved forward, the Prince ran out on the wall towards them, yet instead of meeting as it seemed certain they must, at his footfall the poles moved off in their path, and he ran on to stone steps at one side. At the top of the first flight a sword trap rotated busily. Beyond it, three pairs of saw blades cut across the floor one above the other to the top of the flight. These were easily taken with patience and timing. He stood for a moment and sized up the next hazard. A slow pounding block slid out from the wall, and a spinning pole forward and away close over. Beneath, a deadly spike pit. The Prince dropped down and hung on to the edge of the pit. The pole passed over his head and paused briefly. He quickly jumped backwards, scrambling onto the sliding block and forward again, to land safely the other side of the pit of spikes before the wall block retracted or the spiked log returned. He made his way up a final flight of stone steps. At the top a rank of saw blades sparked back and forth on the floor. A recess to one side gave him temporary shelter from their course. He turned to face three spiked poles, barring further access up the passage steps ahead. One pole slid sideways for a moment or two, at which he ran behind the slicing blades and dodged for the gap between the spiked poles. On either side of him were small barred windows. He confirmed his suspicion that this was indeed the castle prison. On passing over a floor pressure pad a door opened, and with relief he left the infernal corridor of traps. Here was where the Dahaka had reappeared in his devastated Present. It was a large hall of closed doors. The floor was here complete, no abyss below. In this more perfect Past the sword was still mounted on its pedestal at the center of the room. His own sword had seen much action so he cast it aside and eagerly snatched up his prize. "Good, good, this should make things easier." ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN S C O R P I O N S W O R D This sword is stronger than walls. ---------------------------------------------From a corner of the hall, intruders tumbled from an open cell. The Prince hurried over to stem the tide of rushing red hooded guards. His new sword proved invaluable in rapid dispatch of each as they came. By using Eye of the Storm as so often before he slowed Time for all but himself and made short work of combat, though their number seemed relentless. "He doesn't deserve to win," one protested. "Attack him now!" Even when he thought he had peace, two more came running from another open doorway. He dealt with them as easily. The Prince looked around the large hall of doors. Just two were open. Since the first cell appeared empty, and he knew what lay beyond his entrance doorway, the Prince took the opportunity to find where the two new arrivals had come from. Down a brightly lit passage of minor obstacles the Prince came to a

roughly barred door. Where this might have prevented him access before, his new sword had sufficient strength to clear it at a blow. "Finish him," hissed an inhuman voice, "Finish him at once!" He looked carefully around the room beyond but found no enemy in sight. It had dawned on him that he was in the Prison of the fortress, and here were several small rooms each tight shut that might serve as cells. At either side, a furnace blazed, but he guessed these were not for the comfort of the occupants. On the floor to one side a prominent floor switch opened one cell room, but it immediately slid shut as he stepped off. Beside this a short staircase gave onto a platform with a capstan. A simple rotation opened a different cell - and released two enemies, striking their blades in readiness. Tall Executioners, their instincts given only to death and destruction. As they brandished their weapons the Prince headed down to face them. The odds were against him as still others crowded around. He took note of a pair of slender columns in the middle of the room, and since he found initial combat with these professional killers more arduous than most foes he had yet faced, the Prince made good use of his environment to finish the vicious horde at a sweep. In one open cell he found a metal cage, about the shape and size to fit over the floor switch. He had utilized a crate once before for a similar purpose, and dragged the cage over the floor pressure pad. By this ingenuity the last cell door was raised. He made his way in to see what it might contain. It was not a cell but a passage to a hole in the floor served by a ladder. He lost little time sliding down. At its foot waited more Keepers under guidance of an Executioner. To one side a passage, slow sweeping sword blades preventing safe entry. The Prince took the opportunity to fling his senseless enemies into the path of the blades. He followed down that same passage but rolled clear beneath the deadly sweeping swords. On a turn he rolled under a rotating blade, and others beyond, flanked by vicious saw blades. The passage came to a dead end at a decrepit wall. The Prince decided to test the limits of his new sword. He drew it and struck hard at the wall. It shattered and he was through. Here was another grouping of cells. A floor pressure pad sprang an array of spike tiles across the room between, and a spike pit was open at one side. This might have been the punishment block. A capstan lever opened the cell doors, and from the low archways came hurrying Keepers. Directly over the spike tiles. With grim satisfaction the Prince made skewered dust of the misguided gang, and flung a last survivor to the pit for good measure. One of the open cells housed an illuminated wall switch, and though the door that it opened proved on a short timer, the Eye of the Storm allowed time enough for the Prince to run through it. Beyond he found yet another room of cell doors. These were open, and a trio of Executioners hurried out to challenge him. "You should never have come to our island." Making use of a column at the center of the room, the Prince whirled into the evil foe and decapitated each without pity or remorse. When the dust settled, he made for a capstan in an alcove room. The Prince rotated its handle until it locked into place. The door he had entered clanged shut

with an ominous finality, and at the far end of the passage he was in a door opened. There was a basin, where the Prince took his fill. Who could say when he might come to danger again? At one side, a gap in the floor, a spike pit below. The only way was up, and the only way up a wall run and chimney ascent between paneled arches. He pulled up into a large vaulted room. He was back in the hall where he acquired the Scorpion Sword. His long excursion it seemed had been for nothing. As he made his way in to consider his plan, thunderous footsteps came from behind. The enormous Brute had found another place to practice its crude art. In this incarnation it appeared to have much greater strength than before, but would surely have to be countered in the usual manner. The Prince was grateful for a store of Sand he discovered in a vase at one end of the hall, yet found that he need not rely completely on the Eye of the Storm for his advantage. He could bring the giant down if he only stayed behind and slashed at its unprotected hamstrings, and this he could do in normal time by rolling between the Brute's legs whenever it tried to turn. He then mounted one foot and struck at the head. Should a hand reach behind he simply blocked, and moved to the opposite shoulder. As the creature gave up scrabbling behind, he continued striking its cranium dome. Sparks and dust and spurts of blood flew as he landed hit after hit, shaking the furious beast senseless. After a few dozen clanging, banging blows from the powerful Scorpion Sword it collapsed to dust with a roar. When the Brute crashed to the floor the shock dislodged a short ladder from a ledge in the corner of the anteroom from which it emerged. The Prince made his way in, and climbed up. He was in a small empty cell. An illuminated wall switch opened its door. A harsh voice threatened as he stepped through. "Attack him! Do not let him escape." Three Executioners hurried to challenge him on a narrow square balcony. Open at its center the Prince could see down below the large room in which he just defeated the Brute. As the first Executioner attacked, he leapt at it and flung the hoodlum into the gap. A second was parried with his sword, and as the other gathered close the Prince grabbed hold of one of many round columns around the floor gap to whirl off and deal a devastating blow on the pair of them at once. A few repeat flurries about the column and they were gone. He had won the right to investigate the doors around the balcony. At either end were large doors, one open ready for exploration, and the other firmly shut. All smaller doors ranked at the sides were equally solidly shut, yet one archway appeared roughly patched with planks of wood. A blow of his new sword smashed it through. The small chamber beyond contained no less than a wall switch bearing a familiar symbol at its center. Although easily activated, the Prince could see nowhere about the balcony the door thus opened by the switch, though he could hear it close by. A concealed switch might open a concealed door, he reasoned, and made his way around the balcony examining each door very closely. None of the many smaller cell doors would yield to his sword, yet at one corner a wall looked badly cracked... Another mighty blow broke it through, and here indeed was a hidden cell with what might serve as a secret entrance at one end. He hurried back to the wall switch and reactivated it, and heard as before the nearby door slot open. Unfortunately, it slid shut very soon after, and the Prince realized he would need the Eye of the Storm to give time enough to race to the secret

door. Even then the timing was tight. As he might have expected, a corridor of traps was hidden behind. At a flight of steps twin spiked logs scythed up and down, yet hardly hindered his careful roll and dash beneath. At the head of the steps was a long passage, sunlight slanting to reveal a carpet of spike tiles, across which swept twin sword blades. Taking note of a pair of moving spike poles at a doorway to the passage end, the Prince chose his moment to move forward across the spike tiles, rolling under the blades as they swept past, and tumbling through the open doorway as the poles moved away from it. He was not best pleased to find a near identical passage beyond. This time he made for the safe haven of an alcove, where he caught his breath to consider the next obstacle. Three spike poles slid back and forth across his path, with another at station to the foot of a stairway in front, where the traveling poles met. He chose carefully the moment to dash forward as the obstacle parted. Once safely past he took pause on the stone stairway to time a roll beneath a second pair of descending spinning spike logs, and to his relief found a familiar sight at the end of the short passage at the top. He stepped forward to recharge his Amulet at the glowing red device. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------What hand constructed these devices he did not know. What mind devised the deadly array of traps to protect each one he could not guess. What purpose they served to another he could never imagine. Yet they seemed perfectly suited to his own use and he felt somehow certain of the need to visit each one as he discovered it. He undeniably reaped the benefit each time. As he made his way back past the now silent traps the Prince could not help noticing the very many tiny barred windows set low to the floor, like the others he had seen throughout this part of the fortress. As a prison it was extensive. At the passage end he ran over a prominent floor switch to open the door, and returned to the balcony room. Through the ready open doorway nearby a narrow chamber of closed doors and alcoves offered no obvious advance in his mission to return to the Throne Room. Yet there was a network of slender stone beams apparent overhead and he wasted no time in leaping up off the wall at the far end of the chamber to climb up to the lowest. This needed a measured leap at the very height of his ability. A daring rebound jump off the same wall saw him grasp a second beam higher up, and a ledge assisted him to a third higher still. He stepped off to another chamber with more beams overhead. Here too was a stone fountain of water. Refreshed, he made his way up the beams to the height of the chamber, where a wide expanse of sunlit stairway waited invitingly. Well he had learned the lesson of caution, and as he advanced to the head of the steps and made for an open doorway, a pair of masked Assassins confronted him. He had already learned that these were as likely to vanish as swiftly as they swooped if he did not bother to engage, yet with the power of his Scorpion Sword they proved no more of an obstacle

than any foe he habitually crossed. In either event he soon stepped through the open doorway. Inside was a room lined with tall bookshelves, and a network of others beyond. "Kaileena's library," he marveled. "What knowledge must be contained within. I suspect there is much she could have taught me, had things gone another way." In front of him was a heavy table wedged between two bookcases. This served as the only other exit from the small room where he entered, and as he climbed over it a command boomed out from the next room. "Attack him at the same time." Four Executioners in chain-mail helmets crowded around him, hefting maces and heavy swords. He sprang acrobatically over and behind, and rebounded off walls to scatter them each as they came. His speed and agility frustrated their power, and as he pressed hard they collapsed. The Eye of the Storm served him well as a heavy weapon began its assault, that he caught only a single blow instead of reeling off balance from a full sequence of three or four. With his assailant caught in the sticky web of slowed Time he was able to slip behind it instead and bring the brutal attacker to heel. To free space for fighting the Prince moved to the next part of the room, whereon a pair of Assassins swooped down to join the offensive. With no shortage left lying around, the Prince tossed salvaged weapons full into their faces, and closed in to finish them off. With peace to explore, he found the room centered on an arched doorway bearing on it the fortress symbol. The corresponding switch was not in evidence. To each side was a cylindrical turret housing a capstan. The nearest one proved to operate a section of sliding bookshelf, which closed off a section of the room as another one opened. He could well understand the wedged table now, for it enabled two parts of the room to remain open at once. Looking up, he could see there were wall bars and high beams, but as yet no way to reach them. He hurried to the second capstan, and anticipated that it might also slide two sections of high walling bookshelf. This proved to be so, yet it also freed two more sturdy Executioners. These pursued him about the now enclosed space, crashing through furniture and smashing pots as they swung their weapons blindly. He found it little challenge to extinguish them one after the other without recourse to his special powers. In a small room off the book section he discovered a wall counterbalance lever. This would surely open the door in the main room. He heaved it down fully, and then dropped off to go back to the capstan to switch the book sections back and release himself from the section this side. Once the handle had duly been turned, he called on the Eye of the Storm, since time had inevitably been spent in its activation and the central door was closing down all the while. He slipped underneath with little to spare. Without hesitation he ran on up a ladder, where at a balcony walkway another pair of masked maidens confronted him. "I'm not here to hurt you," one pouted. He had heard that lie before. He blocked their sudden vicious assault, but was sure not to stand still for too long lest they hook his feet out from under him. As one sprang with legs split over his head he moved

fast, with the certain knowledge that the aim was to wrap him in a deadly embrace and hold him helpless while slashing his throat. He instead issued a lightning response, turning swiftly to dummy an attack but then deal the blow in the opposite direction to catch them as they landed behind. Each creature took only a few blows to weaken such that he could slice it apart. He retrieved the weapon off one and used it to beat off the other. At an earlier time he had noticed that the sword dropped by a Chameleon creature took life from his body on every stroke that he made. The Prince was astonished to detect that each blow he dealt with the weapons off these maidens of death had the opposite effect, and seemed surely to increase his strength. He used it with relish till it broke apart. He moved on where another female Assassin dropped down on the next turn. He similarly topped up his strength as he wiped her to a mere trace of dust. There were several levels to the library room. He had recently fought at ground level, now on small octagonal balconies he passed over the roof of each little capstan turret. Looking up again he saw more ledges higher still. He must find a way up to them. At the end of the balcony walkway he came on a squared open room where grim Executioners stood ready. "Soften him up," said their leader, "I will finish him after." Swiftly dropping to join this attack came still more Assassins. Temporarily disadvantaged, the Prince stood at a sword's length for a half second to buy time to summon the Wind of Fate. He had used this tactic before when surrounded, and felt now the power increased. The resultant firestorm flattened all enemies, and he moved first to finish any that regained their footing. He made good use of close bookshelves and walls to bowl over any survivor that pressed him too close, and eventually the room and the length of the balcony were his to command. He had come to a dead end. Looking up where he knew he must go, the Prince noticed a wall bar strung across the room, but could see no way to reach to it. He observed dark markings on the floor where he stood, as if dust had gathered about some object long established there. On closer inspection he considered adjacent wall pillars, which seemed to have on them metal handles at a convenient height. The pillars were in fact recessed bookshelves, which on extension fitted perfectly to the marks on the floor, and also served as two sides to a chimney ascent. From the top of one he could reach to the wall bar, and the work of moments found him balancing along a high beam out over the full height of Kaileena's Library. Brilliant shafts of light strung down at his feet as he inched his way out into the main room. Richly decorated panels covered the ceiling and walls. Lanterns swung slightly from wall bars. In moments the Prince swung off them too. At a wall he made his way up stone ledges to a wooden transom leading back to a room that had somehow fallen to ruin. Here was rubble and broken walls, curious when the rest of the library, though dusty, seemed in good repair. He dropped down and clambered to face the library through a hole in the wall. Here by way of other ledges he jumped back to a thin pier formed by the top of one of the octagonal balconies. On making his way carefully into the room, a Blade Dancer appeared swiftly in his path. He stood his ground and waited for her swoop attack. A jump and a slash, and she was gone. He edged out to the center and jumped across the long drop to the library floor to the second octagonal pier.

He could see across to one corner the light of a room framed in a space. It was the work of moments to jump over to ledges that brought him to haul up into it. Here was a private room that matched the ruined one full of rubble he had just left. Through this lay an open door and a passage beyond. Traps sprang to action as he entered. At the bottom of stone stairs a stationary spiked log revolved. He could see a sword blade drum trap rotating close beyond. From a level perhaps five or six steps up from the log he ran easily over it and dropped safe beyond reach of the sword drum. A fast falling spike log midway down steps at the turn did not delay him, but bright streaming light near obscured three spinning saw blades in the floor at their foot. These were flanked across the surface of the floor by spike trap tiles. He waited until the fast rolling blades were closest to him then swerved around behind them, to thread between two spike poles spinning in station, and on across the steely springing spike traps. Catching his breath in shafts of light streaming through a window at a corner, he looked down a last flight of steps with two spinning but stationary logs, one close by at his feet and another scything at head height a little beyond. He judged his distance perfectly to run over the first and drop down beneath the second. At the foot of the steps he turned to see, as hoped, the glowing red symbol at the passage end. He stepped through thin clouded dust to claim his reward. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------With the Amulet charged, the Prince turned back along the now darkened, silent corridor. Such light as there was shafted in through barred slits at the windows. It lent no warmth to this desolate place. He lost no time retracing his steps, up onto the beams and out into the Library. On the ledges around the doorway he had need to hang from a higher nook to give elevation to reach the balcony pier. Carefully skirting this to the wall, he was able to jump to a lower platform. A beam led out from this, where at once appeared a Blade Dancer. He held firm and timed his counter at an exact moment after her swiped approach, leaping expertly over her blade and on his return slashed her to dust. With this minor interruption he balanced out on a jetty. He leaped to a doorway, landing hard with a groan. A low wind moaned above an empty room. He jumped out across beams, which though they spilled dust held his weight. Around a corner, more beams. He jumped again, setting swinging as he brushed it a lit torch suspended on a chain. The light swung eerily across the beams beneath his feet. He arrived at another elevated doorway. "These diversions are costing me time. Best I hurry to the Throne Room, and the Mask." The Prince dropped to the floor. Here was a basin for refreshment. Around a corner, a spinning spiked log rolled up and down above a pit. The way across was by two wall poles, the spinning log between. A careful jump and the Prince swung beneath the log and onwards, to haul up on a stone passage beyond.

The sound of a weapon being drawn and a few scampering footsteps alerted him to the Blade Dancer setting ambush the other side of a pit. With the benefit of a secondary weapon he could hurl it to catch her with no risk to his person, but he began his wall run regardless, and slashed her contemptuously aside as she similarly attempted a wall run at him. A short flight of stairs led up to another pit, which the Prince traversed beneath a window to one side, since the other was blocked by a pilaster. On the far side prowled a lone Spike Beast, which he cast in a fiery ball to the pit below. This could only mean that he was again in the vicinity of the Mechanical Tower, their chosen territory. He gave little pause before a barred door, breaking it down with a blow from his sword. He was indeed back in the Mechanical Tower, at the very spot where he encountered the first of the hellish growling Spike Beasts, and soon made his way across to the central platform there. Here was the ladder leading down from the higher platforms. It seemed a long time since last he used it. He edged out on the short beam facing the huge spinning wheel, well practiced at the jump between its sails by now. He landed firmly on the other side and remembered the basin to hand there. He remembered too that nearby was the habitual haunt of the Brute, and as he dropped down ledges to the ground with its roar close by, he considered that he might save his energy as before if he only ran past the lumbering beast. Far from holding terror for him as might be expected, he had become weary of it. He made his way easily past, with a wary eye on its pursuit, and ascended once more the ledges at the far end of the platform. At the top a handful of Raiders still posted as sentries fell under the weight of a single blow from the mighty Scorpion Sword. He hurried on up a staircase and made quite routine the passage between slow pounding wall blocks to the ladder descent above saw blades. The falling gate and swishing blades were so easily judged now that it felt to him almost like coming home. Back in the Central Hall, more Raiders had been sent to wait his return. "Alert the others!" came a harsh voice. These similarly presented little opposition, and he was unconcerned at a dying threat. "Others will rise to take my place." He knew he must now return to Kaileena's Throne Room. He recalled the symbols on the floor of the Hourglass Chamber outside it and judged that he was yet short two of the nine charges for his Amulet. He remembered the barred alcove to a high balcony he passed when in pursuit of Shahdee, the girl in black. He could not have known then that he would acquire a weapon the likes of the Scorpion Sword. He knew it could break down walls, and trusted its ability in levering obstinate difficulties, and sensed that partly broken bars might prove little test. He recalled well in which direction this lay. Turning once more to the capstan on the Central Hall platform, he rotated its handle to face back to the rose. This had been the position of the blocks when he first made exploration in this Central Hall. He retraced his steps, now armed with a wall-breaking sword. He climbed the set of three blocks to gain height to the slender central columns. He was soon on a wall run to the balcony door, where as before, a lone Raider rushed to meet him. A sword that could break down walls could deal with the thickest of skulls; a single stroke of the Prince's

new blade brought dying protest: "This offense will not be forgiven." Tell someone who cares. The Prince had moved on. Ahead were the three short pits faced by spinning blade poles, as easily crossed as before. He dropped down the first ladder, falling behind a Raider who disappeared with a shriek at the first touch of the Scorpion Sword. Past spike poles and down ladders, brushing aside more careless Raiders, he negotiated the Southern Passage and ran once again through the misted corridor, which this time did not obscure spike trap tiles that hissed and shot up behind his scampering feet. Spinning poles alike did not long hold him from his eager quest to complete the circle of power to his Amulet, and soon enough he emerged in the room of balconies and ledges. Demonic threatening exhalations echoed within but the creatures that stood in his way were but practice for his blade, falling at a stroke be they Keeper, Blade Dancer, or Silhouette. Heads rolled and bodies were cleaved in two. He ascended once again the precarious ledges and beams to the top of the intricate chamber of pillared balconies, sweeping aside all who stood in his way. He arrived at last at the topmost balcony. Here again he cleared easily its demonic guardians. Looking up, he saw once more the lit passage through a wall up above, tantalizing because inaccessible. He examined the cracked metal bars of the alcove beside him and tested them with his blade. He had confidence as he lent all his energy to a tremendous blow, and the bars split apart. Inside was the sturdy decorative crate, a good size for climbing on. He dragged it out of the alcove and up to the wall with the passage above. In moments he was upon it, and with an acrobatic rebound off a short wall overhead hauled up into the secret passage. A wall switch opened a door on a very short timer, and with the power of the Eye of the Storm at his disposal, the Prince ran in, and on through a series of sword traps, spike tiles, spike pits, and rolling logs, so many and varied that, though he managed his way at last to the glowing red symbol, he should not have been able to recount how exactly, if asked. ---------------------------YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------With his Amulet almost fully charged, the Prince made his way back along the silent passage. At its end, a low ledge served as the crate had done, to raise him over the shut door. He soon dropped down to the balcony room and made his way along the high beam to the jetty facing the long red curtain to the ground. He had no need to operate the hanging lever since the door below was still open. He jumped forward to drop down the curtain to go through it. Down narrow steps and another curtain, to the dank passage of spike pit and projecting beams, with spike trap tiles at the far side. Through a doorway at the next turn he was again in the Sacrificial Altar. The steps in front had been knocked out as he remembered, so he could not scale them as he had last time. Yet the rubble formed steps of a kind at one

side. Mounting this he made his way via ledges on pillars to jump down on the ghastly blood stained altar that formed the arena where Kaileena, and then he himself, had fought Shahdee. He hurried across and scaled the blocks of rubble and made his way up the wall and around by ledges, poles, and ropes as he had done before, each footfall, gasp and grunt of effort echoing eerily in the desolate room. He hesitated a little as he approached the small octagonal chamber, but no enemies came at him this time. He swiftly ascended by ledges and bars to the platform with its hidden spike traps. He climbed again the wall of ledges to the rolling log, giving pause at its height. Soon enough he was safely by and ran on to the pit crossed by ropes, dodging saw blades either end. He threaded his way through a nest of spinning spike poles and arrived at last at a familiar Time portal, still active. He could not reach the Hourglass Chamber from here. He must go to the Present. ----------------Portal to Present ----------------Although the darkened passage seems to take a different configuration than his experience of it in the Past, the way is familiar to him and the Prince easily dodges spinning poles and spike traps to a short narrow ledge, and drops down on others to the ground. He uses his ability to slow Time to get himself through the closing door at the adjacent passage. Two Raiders stand mute as before and he wastes little breath in brushing them aside to drop down at the end. Well he remembers the first appearance of the Dahaka at this place. The hole the terrible creature rent in the wall is still there. He works swiftly to it, the enemies gathered at the platform below mere sport for his powerful sword. On entering the smashed hole once again he soon finds the walkway outside crumbled completely after his desperate flight from the nightmarish pursuer. Instead, fallen rubble allows him to climb up beside and shimmy instead, around the wall to cling outside the fortress and up onto a rampart. Tattered red banners hang forlornly in thick gobs of rain that sleet from a leaden sky. The Prince drops down to find the small hole he had used as refuge from the Dahaka. He rolls inside once again and finds at the passage end a fresh sentry, as uselessly ordered as the last. "I don't like the looks of this," it protests with a certain understatement. A wall run out to the barley-cane column and he returns to the vestibule at the Fortress Entrance. It all seems a long time ago. The red curtain, the column, a shimmy round a ledge - as many Keepers as stand in his way do not slow his intent. Where the Dahaka pursued him to the curtain of water there is now only silence, broken by the forlorn squeak of a uselessly spinning saw blade deep in a pit as he crosses. The portal is still active. Steam rises to the cold air from the spiral at its eye. He hurries to return through it to the Past. -------------Portal to Past -------------With the route clear in this fully functional Past the Prince can get back to the Central Access Hall.

Once more skirting traps and Raiders, he made his way through the vestibule where the strange savage creature had attacked him with an axe. He triggered easily the switch to the door to return outside and reenter the doorway with sliding spiked poles. The same wearisome opponents faced him at the Fortress Entrance, and in the Central Hall itself. With a little peace the Prince set the capstan handle to face the passage to the Hourglass Chamber. Stone blocks rearranged to complete the flooring back towards the fountain on that side. The Prince considered his options. From one side he looked down and saw a doorway behind a thin stream of water silently pouring from one of a row of stone spouts from high above to ledges beneath. Just below him was a block platform promising first means of access towards it. He was all too aware that he lacked the final piece to fully unlock the power of his Amulet, and he felt now (with all other doorways explored) that the mechanism must be contained within the entrance down there. He hopped off to the nearest block just a foot below the platform edge. Hanging off one side of this, the Prince decided on his daring athletic chimney descent whereby he sprang backwards to touch against a facing wall and on first footing sprang back, dropping down a little as he did so, then straight back off the first wall to repeat the extraordinary feat, all the way to the bottom in a slow confident rhythm. On safe landing he seemed for a moment to be stuck, but looked out to one side and judged he might repeat the maneuver on a nearby chimney of facing blocks. He boldly ran out on the wall, and when nearing the end of his trajectory, sprang out in another audacious leap to touch lightly against the facing column he had seen. He sprang backwards again and yet again, this time with his weight forcing him upwards to a place where he caught hold and climbed up. There could be little doubt no other could scale the obstacle so ingeniously. Looking down once more he saw the doorway now tantalizingly close. From misty depths he made out a narrow ledge at the base of the door column, and judged once more that his chimney descent might gain access to it. It was the work of moments to run out on the smooth wall ahead and spring back, to descend by slow turns to grapple onto the ledge beside the door. He edged around the column and stood before the doorway. A thin drape fluttered at its face. He made his way inside. At a turn he encountered spinning logs and a carpet of spike tiles. A rolling log descended at the mid point of the short passage, and either side were spinning poles traveling side to side across half of the floor, two at the right and one to the left. As the falling log hit its low point of travel the Prince set off at a run, first ducking left of the nearest spinning pole then passing under the log, then switching to the right side of the passage to avoid the second traveling pole, and back to the left to avoid the last. All at a steady zigzag run to stay ahead of the sprung tile traps. The passage switched back in the other direction, and here was set a rotating sword. He rolled expertly beneath it, and stood at the top of a flight of steps to size up the next obstacle. Two spinning logs blocked a run down the steps and a third log rolled back and forth towards him. He chose the moment to follow its travel on a wall run, passing over the first spinning log and dropping down under the second, the rolling spiked log yet harmlessly out of touch. Around the bottom corner he saw the red wall symbol ahead. ----------------------------

YOU GAIN L I F E U P G R A D E As the Health bar increases the Prince becomes stronger ---------------------------Now that he had collected all nine charges to his Amulet, he felt best equipped for any hazard that he might find in his quest for the Mask. Then he would face the Empress again. The next time would be different. Back at the Central Hall he was tempted to make a leap forward from the passage doorway to a likely block opposite, but looked instead to a safer prospect nearby. An upward chimney ascent saw him on the central platform once more. His route to the Hourglass Chamber was as perilous as ever but he was now well used to the intricate obstacles and knew the proper course against each. He soon rolled under the door to the Hourglass Chamber. He noticed with satisfaction that all nine symbols on the floor design were lit. On a small pedestal placed in the circle at its center rested an unusual weapon. He would attend to that later. He needed to get into the Throne Room but Kaileena had sealed it from within. A door had opened to one side at the foot of the stairs. The Prince hurried through, finding on the other side a capstan, which appeared to do no more than crank shut the stone door behind him. He was faced with a run out on a wall under scything saw blades. Judging the moment as the rise of a spinning pole just beyond, a backward leap brought him beneath its spiked reach to a narrow platform, where he dropped to cling and catch his breath as it descended once more. On its subsequent rise, the Prince scrambled to his feet and ran forward, leaping a bottomless gap to grab to safety on the other side. Again, this was a path no ordinary man would easily negotiate. He made his way up a dark passage. At the top was the brightly lit Throne Room. This entrance had been concealed behind a now collapsed statue. The room seemed deserted as he stepped out. Faint golden swirls of sand glittered on the marble floor. "The Sands of Time. After all I've done to be rid of them, still they haunt me." He made his way up to the throne, his thoughts troubled. "Even if I am to find the Mask of the Wraith, Fate will find a way to reclaim me." The Prince looked out over the Throne Room. If he kills the Empress he will release the Sands. If he does not, she will create them. "I will only be given a second chance... to fail." He slowly ascended the carpeted steps to the throne of the Empress of Time. He pounded his fist in his palm. "I'm overlooking something. I must think this through." He looked around. Something about the cracked stone behind the seat of the throne caught his attention.

"This wall," he considered. "It looks similar to the ones I saw on my way back from the prison." He jumped up on throne. Placing his ear to the stone he tested his sword with a speculative tap. "It worked earlier..." As walls had before, the cracked stone gave way. The Prince smashed through to reveal access to a new portal chamber. He must return to the Present and try to find the Mask. As he ran forward, rubble collapsed to block the hole behind. The Prince ran panting onto the platform of the Time portal. The proximity of this new chamber to the Throne Room gave the Prince the first inkling of a plan. "What if..." he wondered, "What if Kaileena didn't die in the past but the present? The Sands would be created but the Maharajah would fail to find them. They would never be brought to his palace, and I would never release them. The Dahaka will have no business with me." He looked to the portal at his feet. "My goal is clear then: use the Mask to force Kaileena into the present, where I can kill her. It's simple!" he reasoned. "Or sounds simple." -- THE FACE OF TIME -----------------------------------------------------------------------------Activate portal to Present ----------------------------------------------------------------------YOU GAIN N E W S A N D T A N K A new sand tank lets you stock more Sands of Time ---------------------------------------------Behind the throne is now solid rock. The Prince finds a doorway next to it that leads into a darkened cave. Here are rocky ledges, and thin shafts of light streak from a hole in the cave roof high above. He sees the glow of light from a doorway somewhere out of reach but before he can consider this, low animal growls and snicker of claws on bare rock alert him to the presence of a pack of slavering beasts, scavengers in this dark place. He sees off the nearest attacker and runs up onto a high rock platform. On top waits another, and he knocks it aside as he looks about for safer refuge. To one side, a pale area of rock has been worn away by the passage of many clawed feet, giving clue as to the route to a second rock platform. He scampers easily over, and continues a run out on another scored path. A Scavenger blocks him, but is slashed aside to fall to the cave floor with a howl. His stride hardly broken, the Prince leaps off to a platform. A climb to a ledge and he manages to grab out onto the broken edge of the doorway he spotted from below. With animal noises echoing

behind him he moves in among a litter of scattered book pages to the ruined corridor beyond. Vegetation has broken through, but by decoration and architecture this might once have been some place of worship, secret if not sacred. He emerges to a balcony high above the ground in a vast subterranean chamber, wind whistling in the cavernous space as cascades of water tumble from rocky waterfalls all around. Before him is an enormous square rock platform, balanced on a slender base from the tempestuous sea far below. He jumps the long distance down and runs out over its smooth marbled top. Fissures run over the curiously decorated surface. Was this some place of ritual? He could not guess. Ahead of him, built into the rock face of the cavern, he sees various high doorways, lit with brands. As he makes his way across, Silhouettes materialize in his path, in company of packs of grunting, growling Scavengers. There can be little profit from pointless combat and the way ahead is clear. The Prince runs quickly off the far edge of the arena platform to the largest doorway ahead. "One step closer, Prince," comes a sinister voice, "two steps back." His is the proper course. Through open doors on the balcony ahead he sees a high arched gateway of ornate metal bars. Through these a figure, its back to him. Though startled at first, he sees this is but a statue. To one side a door is partly open. He rolls beneath. Across a shallow pit of spikes, the Prince draws his sword as if by instinct. Skittering footsteps warn of Scavengers, easily dodged as he spots a floor switch in dim light of the passage ahead. He runs to it, slashes aside a snapping beast and activates the switch, which brings clattering from a wall ahead a short metal grille. He senses it will not long be in place, and scans the way beyond quickly. A broken column projects downward from a stone arch within reach of a wall run, and in moments he runs, jumps, and clings to it. He is in a dank stone chamber of barred cells and arches. He cannot see its bottom, mist rising far below. Above can be seen lit alcoves, and perhaps a wall switch or two. He scooches up the column as far as he can and jumps backwards to a wall, beginning then a swift chimney ascent to land atop the narrow edge of the stone arch. He balances carefully to its end. He looks around, and although there is a prominent wall switch to one side there seems no easy route away from it. A leap to a pole and a swing off it activates the switch, at which a reactive leap back sees him return to the arch top via the pole once more. The Prince has confidence in his plan of progression, there being anyway no obvious alternative. The switch has released another metal grille, and he balances his way swiftly to jump to it, and hurriedly off to a wall pole. This faces a wall switch with a second pole above, and by wondrous acrobatics he swings up and on to yet another wall grille, and ahead around the high wall to a pole, off and a rebound from a wall to a curtain, where all in a blur he slides its length, spinning off before its end, to solid ground of a high rock platform. No rest here, as at once the Prince is attacked by vicious Scavengers, and only with peace won by his sword can he consider the way ahead. One stone wall looks cracked and ready to be broken through. A blow from his sword and the center blocks are smashed away. Exposed behind is a passage, onward and down across a narrow pit of spikes.

Through an arch he finds himself once again overlooking the massive squared platform. Wind whistles about the castle walls in this vast cavern, daylight shafts through the near covered rock ceiling high above. To the distance and all around, waterfalls cascade to an ocean inlet far below. The platform where he stands faces a cranny to one side. A daring run and he is around a wall pillar above the tall arched doorway where he last entered. Another platform and low arch door mirrors the one he just left. With a few deft shimmy-shuffles he is in. Another passage leads over a gap to a dead end, where a wide hole admits a hanging red banner. He drops to the floor of a narrow chamber below. Beside him is a closed gate but there is no other exit. Behind him, on a pedestal in an eerie shaft of light from high above, is the statue of a sitting figure he had seen through bars behind. There seems something very odd about it. He approaches warily. The figure is not a statue but a mummified corpse in a supplicant pose. It wears a sculpted mask. The Prince removes the artifact from its ghastly setting, and examines it. There is curious writing on its surface inside. He squints close to read. In an involuntarily movement the mask is placed to his face. At once he is gripped by a burst of light from within. Perspective is distorted and the very ground shakes. He is borne aloft, in twisted agonized spasms as he screams and gargles uncontrollably, hands clutched to his throat, torn by the force raging through him. Sinews snake and wrap around his body, held fast in the beam of light from above as debris clatters about. After a moment of stillness the light bursts, and his body is transformed as he is cast down. He pants for breath and runs a hand to his face, still behind the mask but now part of it. His voice rasps in the hollow confines as he staggers to his senses. "I--I have become that thing!" He raises his head. Behind the mask his eyes burn with brilliant blue light. He shakes his fists to the skies. Realization dawns. "It wasn't trying to kill me but warn me! Warn me of Kaileena's betrayal and of my own role in creating the Sands." If it is his fate to be the strange creature, then just as surely he will face the final encounter with the Dahaka. He thought then that the relentless guardian of the Timeline had learned to find him in the past, yet at that encounter it sought to remove the other where it did not belong. "And in the end it died," he realizes with grim finality, then corrects himself. "I died!" He feels his face. "The mask is part of me now, and if the Maharajah's tale is true it will remain this way until my other self perishes. Only then can I remove the mask." ---------------------------------------------YOU ARE T H E S A N D W R A I T H

Sands of Time regenerate but your life slowly fades away. ---------------------------------------------He must return to the Central Access Hall, there to confront his other self in the face of the Dahaka. Through the now open gate Scavenger dogs come prowling. They snarl and snap, but the Sand Wraith brushes past to run up off a wall to spring back to a bar. A swing and an angled jump off a wall has him clinging to a slender column. He adjusts his direction to grab off to a crack in one wall. A shimmy-drop, shimmy-drop, brings him to a ledge at the foot of a massive wooden door but no way through. With careful positioning he jumps behind to a narrow jetty made of stone. Dust falls but it holds his weight. Traps trigger to action, but with unlimited power to slow Time at his disposal the Wraith passes them easily as no mere mortal could. He comes to a long narrow pit, mist rising from its depths. To one side, a fast spinning saw blade that would cut to pieces any man foolish enough to try passing, despite what acrobatics he may. The Wraith slows Time to a crawl as the rasping blade approaches so he can climb on to a jetty and spring over to another midway along, and pass safely by. He hauls up and jumps swiftly to another stone beam at the end of the pit, and shuffles aside beneath a stuck blade so that he can clamber out to a last passage. Opposing pairs of twin sweeping sword blades block normal access. Too low to roll under, but the Time powers are invaluable in gaining the precious seconds he needs to run by, and at the passage end he discovers a portal chamber. -- A SECOND CHANCE ---------------------------------------------------------------------------Activate portal to Past -------------------------------------------------------------------YOU GAIN C Y C L O N E O F F A T E This power lets you do the strongest ground attack hurting several enemies simultaneously. Use this power when the Prince is surrounded by enemies. ---------------------------------------------The Sand Wraith is released from the force of the Time portal and turns to his task. "Up until now I have allowed the Dahaka to control me, to fill me with fear. Fear of my capture, my destruction, the loss of my family and friends. But now the creature fills me with rage! I will destroy Kaileena in the Present, and I will be free!" Determined, he ducked easily past the sword blades sweeping beyond the portal door. The rasping saw blades were now both operational, slicing fast the length of the narrow bottomless pit. As the pair moved away, he slowed Time, allowing him to balance to the wall on the beam and jump to hang off one small jetty halfway along the passage. As Time reverted its

course the blades swept back, now safely overhead, and the Wraith slowed Time once more as he scrambled up and leaped for the other small jetty near the passage door. A simple jump to the opposite wall kept him clear of the blades on their return and he shimmied off a crack in the wall to the doorway, and went through. A traveling spike log blocked the way. He dropped to the edge of a long pit as the log passed overhead and, with the use of his Time powers, climbed up to a high ledge. On the opposite wall were two more slicing saw blades, one over the other with a ledge in between. When the higher blade passed away he jumped to the ledge and caught his footing. As the lower blade moved away under him, the Wraith slowed Time once again and dropped to grab the ledge. He followed it under as the upper blade returned. Climbing again when it safely passed by, he moved quickly to the far edge of the pit and dropped safely down to the passage floor. The passage was misty, and although he moved fast he did not act in haste. Under logs and across a pit he came to a water fountain, where he gratefully snatched a drink. He was otherwise powerless to prevent his life slowly ebbing away. He found he was again at the entrance archway leading from the vast cavern with its massive smooth platform. He looked through the bars where he first saw the strange mummified corpse on its pedestal, now empty. He was in a Past before the creation of the Sands of Time, and that unfortunate man had not yet met his fate. It was the Prince of Persia who had taken on the Mask's curse. The Sand Wraith jumped out to the platform below. He panted hard and stepped out cautiously. There was no sign of any of the creatures that confronted him before. He cocked an ear suddenly. From the mists he heard a curious sound. A rhythmic beat, like the beating of wings. Gigantic wings. He rolled with a cry as a huge demon bird swooped on him practically defenseless at the center of the platform. This was a beast in the form of an eagle with the body of a lion, the mythical Griffin whose statue he had seen at intervals about the island. If this was a place of worship here was its object, no mythical creature but enormous, taloned, and only too real. The beast screeched and circled, then swept down in a fury, sending him flying. It descended to the platform and advanced. The Wraith invoked his Time powers to hold it at bay so he could get close to somehow do damage. Remembering his success with the Brute, he decided to use its size against it. He rolled nimbly behind and slashed at its haunches. Blood sprayed in spurts on each blow, and the creature screamed furiously, trying to step high to stop the pest from its attack. He moved to match its lumbering turn, ready to run from its sweeping claws or swishing tail, keeping up his assault all the while. The beast bounded forward but he chased after and kept slashing. It took to the air, circling and rushing down at him with a draft of wind that knocked him to the ground. He somersaulted and rolled as it flew past to attack, and on one run was swept to the very edge of the platform, where he clung above the drop. Though the Griffin swooped again and again it seemed he was safe there for a moment. The beast settled to ground, and as the Wraith ran to resume his attack, it stamped one massive paw with a blast that knocked him off his feet. He slowed Time and got behind it, beyond reach of its sweeps and slashes, and set to with his blade once again. The cycle resumed and the Wraith became weary but kept up the assault. When close to exhaustion he gave a final blow and the Griffin reeled back in a spray of blood.

It took to the air in a fury, laying trails of fire as it flew crazily over the platform. With a last scream it collapsed in flames, shrieking and spiraling to the ground. It knocked down as it did so a large block of stone from one entrance. This served as an intermediate step to a ledge previously out of reach. It faced a large door, where as the Prince he had first dropped to this platform arena. It was now solid and impassible. To one side the Prince noticed a niche along the middle of a door pillar. He jumped up and shimmied round to grab another niche on a block alongside. His arduous upward chimney maneuver served him well as he ascended to a higher platform. Here was a door tight shut. As he had over the arched doorway opposite, he ran out to a recess over the central door and shimmied around to a doorway on the other side. A chunk of broken platform looked down over a large room partly hewn from craggy rock. Water vapor billowed from its depths. By a bold wall run he leaped backwards to swing from a wall bar to a hanging curtain. Slicing down this he saw another bar behind and leaped at the last crucial moment. Without pause he continued on to a shorter hanging drape, off which he fell lightly to a ledge. Inside a doorway, twin sword blades cycled viciously towards him across a gap. Liberal use of his Time powers saw him across, and up ledges between saw blade and rolling log. At a turn a stationary spiked log stood in his way. It took only a moment of thought to align with a wall pilaster, run up off it and jump back to clear the spinning log. At the passage end he came quite unexpectedly to daylight, and a not unwelcome return to the Garden Waterworks. He knew his direction back to the Central Hall from there. He balanced quickly on the top edge of stout trellis, and by a few nimble leaps landed safe on the wide sluice feeding the moat aqueduct leading from the gardens to the Mechanical Tower. He had noticed this as a path from the other side of a barred gate to the garden. A foot pressure switch opened this in a flash and he followed the pathway formed by the sluice up to where he had previously activated the central capstan. Keepers waited here, and no doubt Chameleons would join soon if he cared to engage. He felt in need of refreshment and made haste inside where he remembered a basin. He remembered too how to run past scything saw blades, both inside and out. By way of the long ladder down he ran on to an open door and a brief encounter with two guards. Similarly, activation of the slow falling door and return past more Keepers to the central platform above the Garden Hall taxed him but little. He well knew his path from here - the Crow Master stood ready to challenge him at the middle platform - but by an unexplained instinct the Sand Wraith struck out on a different course. Using the wall switch to bring out the block section on this central platform, he made his way across ledges and ladders down to the garden. Though Keepers waited here he did not linger, and made his way through the plank passage of birdsong and streaming light, which he remembered led directly to the Central Hall. He ran swiftly to climb out and roll under rotating drum blades. Raiders were swatted like flies, and he stepped to the passage end. He had arrived back at the Central Access Hall but the column blocks were not favorably arranged and there was no way down to the platform from his high doorway. The Sand Wraith turned to retrace his steps. Footsteps below made him turn suddenly.

The Empress walked slowly from the direction of the Hourglass Chamber. "Too soon..." she murmured. Was she already planning her betrayal, to give him her cursed sword at this very place? More footsteps, and Shahdee, the girl in black, came to her mistress. "His ship approaches," she informed her. "It is just as the Timeline foretold. I am sorry, Empress." "You have done as I said?" "The crew is assembled and the ship is ready." "Then go now. I have activated the Island's portals. You will travel to his time, engage him at sea and kill him. Kill them all!" Shahdee made an extravagant bow. "As you wish." "I do not appreciate your tone." "You know you cannot change the Timeline," Shahdee gestured. "You cannot escape your fate. Yet you send me on this doomed mission." "If you fail and he reaches the island, you will find death," the Empress promised. "At my hands. Now, go!" The Sand Wraith looked down on the drama. "It's odd," he reflected. "Kaileena and I are not so different. Each hoping to change our fate." He turned once more to find his way to the Throne Room, a bitter resolve in him now. "A shame that one of us will have to die." Since there was no way down from his high doorway, he returned to the Garden Hall and ascended the ladder at its entrance. The Crow Master made reappearance at each platform to the highest but was easily repulsed. By a wall run and swing off a pole the Wraith returned to the central platform. Keepers patrolled to little effect. He made use of a rope at the middle division to run over to a platform on which the Crow Master attempted to deny him but was sent screeching at first stroke of his sword. The Wraith dropped down ladders to a stone passage. More sentries hurried to attack. "Do as you are told and kill him!" The first was smashed to yellow dust at a single blow. "The undefeated army falls," groaned the second, moments before being cleaved in two. At a twisting corner was a Time portal, still active. -- THE PATH OF THE SANDWRAITH -------------------------------------------

----------------Portal to Present ----------------As he winds back along the moss-strewn passage, the Wraith reminds himself of his urgent mission. "I must find my way back to the Throne Room." Without warning, tentacles lash up from the ground before him. The Dahaka suddenly appears. The Wraith grasps the short ladder at the wall in front and tries desperately to climb. The Dahaka intercepts and snatches him down, smashes him into a wall and hurls him through a wooden door. He is cast into a deep well pit. Plank struts break his fall but wind him as he collapses to a shallow pool. At least he is far below the reach of the Dahaka, growling at the mouth of the pit. With nearly all his energy knocked from him by the fall, the Wraith drinks lustily from knee-deep water, which runs down every wall to a single exit. Along a dank passage spiked rolling logs and rotating blades are taken at a tumble as the Wraith hurries to find his way. Across a shallow spike pit a Blade Dancer waits. "You don't honestly believe you can defeat me?" she sneers. A determined wall run and slash as he sweeps past is his answer. "How?" she wails, "How can this have happened!" Through a low arched doorway beyond, a group of Raiders stand unaware of his approach. The first is taken before he can act. "Help me with this," comes a shout as the rest crowd around. "Alert the others." As many as there are, each falls with a shriek. He stands alone on a broken platform at a corner of a familiar room. Here, as the Prince, he had first encountered the Dahaka. He notices that the wall high on one side where there is a barred opening is yet undamaged, which means that though the beast hunts him still, it has not passed here at this point in time. He is ahead of the Prince. He runs out on a wall to a rope and swings easily to a broken platform in another corner. He uses a hanging red curtain to descend to a raised platform over which he has passed more than once. It is of little concern whether wretched enemies appear on the platform below or not, the Wraith makes his way with a chimney ascent to the broken pillar rim where he tracked the Dahaka through the hole it made. This time he continues around the pillar to a decorative beam, hung with vegetation, and climbs up. Water drips from the cracked ceiling above. As he edges along the beam, a Blade Dancer drops swiftly to confront him. He readies his weapon and stands his ground. "I'll not give you the satisfaction of seeing me fall," the creature vows. Oh, I think you will. She does.

On another high pillar top is a ledge to a crack, where by a backwards leap the Wraith swings via a gnarled branch to a wall pilaster. He edges carefully around a decorative edged niche to leap off at a high platform. Here stands a masonry block. This is where he ducked out of sight on first appearance of the Dahaka. He was very close to a portal, and a way to negotiate the devastation of the Fortress at Present to the Throne Room in the Past. It takes some effort to spring upwards from the block in a chimney ascent to the short chamber above, where a closely-timed wall switch opens the door from this side. The Wraith hurries through to the passage beyond, and soon makes his way up ledges and blocks, past spiked poles and tile traps, through a curtain of water to the sanctuary of a portal. -------------Portal to Past -------------The spiked poles were configured a little differently, but patience and timing took him safely between, as they did with the run across walls to ropes past sliding saw blades at the passage turn. Dropping down a series of ledges brought him to the edge of a small round chamber, which he descended by dropping off wall bars across its center. Things looked familiar as he emerged to a vast ornate room. He had returned to the Sacrificial Altar. The walkways were intact, which meant that the destruction on the death of Shahdee had not yet occurred. At this grim recollection, Blade Dancers swooped from above to surround him. "You have no place on this island," one advised. "You have two choices run, or die!" As when he was last offered, he made a third choice, blocked their attack and unleashed the devastating Cyclone of Fate. At the command of his Amulet, a haze of energy swept from him in a ring, which burst out and seared the surrounding enemies to dust. "Tell me when you're going to be ready to fight for real," sneered a survivor. He duly dealt death with his sword. He ran on down a flight of steps from a high bridge to the wall walkway, where he took refreshment at a water basin. To one side he found a floor switch, which activated a drawbridge, sliding from a wall to a now open gate at one side. As he made his way to it, the Wraith heard running footsteps far below. He looked down, as Shahdee and the Empress acted out their confrontation not long after his arrival on the Island of Time. He could not then have known the true significance of this encounter. "I tried my best Empress," Shahdee explained. "He was too strong a fighter." "He reached the Island?" "Worse, he followed me through a portal. He is here, now, in our time." The Empress showed her rage in striking her subject to the ground. "How dare you stand before me and admit failure! You should have DIED to protect me!"

"I'll not give my life for this foolishness," replied Shahdee. "If you want to try to change the Timeline, you can do it yourself!" She flung herself at the Empress. They locked together. "After everything I've done," spat Kaileena. "How dare you!" Unseen high above, the Wraith jumped to the slowly retracting platform. "I already know how this ends," he thought ruefully. He saw himself as the Prince far below. It was indeed another lifetime away, when he thought he knew everything yet knew so little. How much more was there to learn? He returned to his task through the doorway, the heavy gate closing down behind. Along the passage ahead the Sand Wraith heard the squealing and grinding of mechanical traps. Across his path a stationary spinning log met by another, rising and falling. A wall run took him safely between, and more careful timing took him, via ropes and runs, over a spike pit beyond. He was fortunate at least that in his cursed state the Prince had unlimited recourse to the Eye of the Storm, slowing such hazards in his path that they might more easily be negotiated. As the passage gave out to a darkened cave, it became more difficult to see the combinations of pits, saw blades and rotating blades in his path, yet he negotiated all and came safely to a fountain of water at which he fortified himself. A low hole in the cave wall at one side admitted bright light. He emerged to an enclosed platform open to the sky, the battlements of the Fortress. Here awaited lofty Executioners. As he fought them aside the Sand Wraith searched about for some way to leave the small space but saw no door or any means to scale its bloodstained walls. Presently the swordsmen were joined by a pack of grunting Spike Beasts, which he set flaming in every direction. As one detonated, it blew out a blocked doorway, clean to the sheer walls of the cliffs far below. With no end to the onslaught in the confines of the battlements, the Sand Wraith dropped through and clung to its edge. As luck would have it, here hung a banner, down which he released himself, cutting through the material with his sword. At its bottom edge he sprang away, flying to the convenience of a horizontal pole off wooden scaffold close behind. He dropped swiftly to another, sensing that it would not long hold his weight, and swung off to grab a slender mast projecting from the rocks below, the last remnant of some ship no doubt plundered and brought here by the Pirates. These last pitiful timbers soon cracked and gave way, and he leaped first to another mast, no safer, and off swiftly to a third. Without pause he flew off to land breathless on a grassy platform ledge. Here was no respite. Executioners gathered round. "Attack him at the same time!" He held off the closest and tossed another to the seas but saw no profit in prolonged combat. As acrobatic masked creatures in female form swooped to join the assault, the Sand Wraith turned to one side, sweeping aside a clutter of pots, to run up on a wall and back, to the safety of a branch overhead. From it he swung on to a higher wall, from which he ran out across the fortress wall to a rope, and onwards to another convenient

banner. At the foot of this, he sprang to branches knotted from the castle stone, and began an audacious upward chimney climb between close walls. At the top, he took refreshment at a shallow stream running off a waterwheel to one side. Here was another high battlement, bloodstained as the last. As Spike Beasts and swooping enemies descended about him, the Sand Wraith ran off to one side and dropped to a ledge. He escaped down another hanging curtain. At its foot he made a daring leap out over the raging sea far below to a series of spars, timber and soon collapsing masts of rotting hulks on the shore. He came in a blur to a wooden walkway, which crumbled at his first touch. He ran on, the planks from the cliff face collapsing at his feet, around a corner and up to a higher walkway, no firmer than the last. He ran hard at its end and jumped out, where he hung from a sturdy branch for a few moments to consider his progress and allow his Sands to regenerate. There was no alternative but to continue over further collapsing plank walkways, a spring up off a facing wall bringing him to one last. With no time to collect himself he ran on and made fast across a wall, where he was challenged by a female voice. "You don't honestly believe you can defeat me?" Perhaps more by luck than good timing the Sand Wraith knocked her from his path without breaking step. Though it threw him a little, he grasped a rocky ledge, which seemed at once to tremble and give way. There was nowhere to run on to, nowhere to grab for safety. As the ground shook perilously beneath his feet the Wraith faced a cracked rocky wall and dealt a blow that smashed through to a cave beyond. Salvation. Or damnation. On the bloodstained floor a skull, and ahead the first sign of what would surely and inevitably be many lethal traps. At a ledge beyond a pit waited another hideously perverted travesty of a masked being in female form. "I will not fail the Empress," she promised. With the encounter outside the cave passage still fresh in his mind, and having regard to fast slicing saw blades at one side, and judging the likelihood that any rash challenge whilst engaged in a long run at the cave wall would like as not send him tumbling to the spike pit below, the Sand Wraith tossed a weapon instead and cut her in two. Safe at the other side, a serried rank of saw blades rose and fell at one side of a likely chimney ascent. The Eye of the Storm power slowed their rate such that he sprang safely above and on up to a higher passage. More time powers were needed to pass on narrow ledges through fast scything blades, bloodstains on walls mute testament to those many who had tried this route and failed. The Sand Wraith emerged safe into a lit room, where he took at once the opportunity to arm himself fully by levering an axe from a pillar where it lodged. He turned suddenly to see himself as the Prince in a barred room beyond, gazing with suspicion at his undoubtedly sinister appearance. Creeping stealthily behind the unwary Prince came an assassin, eyes glowing with hateful intent. The Sand Wraith in an instant cast his axe, spinning swift through the air close by the Prince. Though

he had believed it an imperfect attempt to harm him, the throw was inch perfect. The axe planted solid in the creeping enemy's skull, consigning it in that instant to dust. "I had saved my own life," he realized, "and I did not even know it." With the least pause for reflection the Sand Wraith ran off to his purpose, leaving the Prince safe behind to continue on his. Fate would have them meet again. The Wraith had now to find a way to the Throne Room. Ahead rising tall from roughly hewn rock were a pair of slender columns, on which he swung to a doorway. -- MIRRORED FATES ------------------------------------------------------A passage of spiked logs and a pit led to a small chamber packed with Raiders. Taking no chance, the Wraith held off a moment and summoned again the Cyclone of Fate. The room darkened as a mighty ring of fiery energy gathered about him and burst across the confined space, blasting all but himself to oblivion. Where the passage continued beyond, a series of sudden sprouting spike tiles and blade traps led to a shaft of buzzing saw blades. He dropped down carefully into it, descending between each blade at a series of ledges. The passage continued on at its foot, with spiked logs, a pit, saw blades, and tile traps all to be negotiated, until he saw ahead at the passage end an open doorway tinged with green murky light beyond. He found a chamber of pillars and platforms, the brilliant glow of fiery liquid blazing at a course along its floor. Rail tracks for small machinery ran around the room, evidently a foundry of some description. At the far end a possible exit, high off the ground faced by a small platform, out of reach from the ground. A nearby contraption of steel bars and ironwork gave him the beginning of an idea. "If I cannot reach the platform, perhaps I can bring the platform to me!" Dodging enemies that came at him from dark corners, the Wraith hurried up a ladder to one of the stone platforms deep inside the room. This platform, as each of the others, had on it a metal column with a handle projecting from its base. As the Prince turned this, short sections of metal pipe mounted at the top of each column rotated to suit. He could see that these sections might be turned in this manner to meet one another, thus forming a conduit, although for a purpose not immediately apparent. At the far end of the room, a thin glowing stream of molten liquid cascaded from above. He made his way across the platforms to investigate, dodging with a wall run as he did so a pair of slow spinning wall blades. He could avoid unnecessary injury; though the room was hot he found yet no refreshment. The stream of molten liquid poured forth from fixed pipework near the door where he had entered. From above the column by which he stood, it flowed through one angled section of pipe to spill to the floor below. He turned the handle at the base of this column and the right-angled pipe on top cranked around, leaving the liquid to pour short, then meeting the flow again, but this time sending it across the room to another pipe over the adjacent platform. Still the molten stream poured uselessly to the ground. With the makings of a plan, the Wraith balanced his way across a narrow beam to that other platform, from it perhaps to determine where the flow might next be directed. There was no time to waste. "Come on, come on," he reasoned. "One of these levers should do it."

The handle turned a similar right-angled pipe section, this time redirecting the flow towards the platform with the ladder. He made his way back over, using wall poles past more spinning saw blades. Eagerly he rotated the handle on the next metal column, and noted that this lever operated two sections of pipe simultaneously. As design would have it, the sections met perfectly, and at once the molten liquid oozed and bubbled along a full course of pipework, from one end of the room to the other. It flowed steadily along the metal channel the Prince had formed, spewing from its open end into the contraption he had noted, to a crucible below. This groaned and tilted with the sudden weight, then spilled over to another crucible beneath, and from that the white-hot liquid splashed over onto the floor. A molten pool spread wide and caught alight. Flames licked the metal stanchions of the nearby platform, which soon toppled and crashed as its legs deformed under intense heat. The Wraith had indeed brought the platform to him; the collapsed rubble now formed a means of access to the gap high in the wall above. As flames extinguished, he wasted no time descending to the floor to climb the pile of rubble and reach this ingeniously worked exit. Inside the open gap he found a basin at which to wash away the hot taste of the foundry air. He set off down a passage of traps. As before, negotiated with patience and timing. He came presently to a capstan lever, which swapped sections of wall, with fresh traps in a new passage beyond. He had first to climb a near wall to a ledge, and from it mount a slender beam. Balancing to its end, a careful jump between fast rising and falling spiked logs brought him onto another. He dropped to a stone ledge, and between ranks of slow sliding saw blades to the ground some distance below. Faced by a dead end at a turn, with retracting sword blades in his path even so, there appeared no obvious route onward. Yet he noticed up above there were other slender stone beams. He timed a run between appearances of the blades, directly ahead to the wall of the dead end, and jumped backwards and up at its very center, clutching barely onto the point of the beam. A high exit lay over the wall opposite. He hopped down. Here was a small chamber of stone alcoves bearing locked doors of bars and grilles. Swinging overhead was a metal cage amid rusted chains. These could only be instruments of torture. With some misgivings he recognized the environs of the prison through which he had passed some time before, soon confirmed as he dropped from a doorway in one wall down a long hanging banner to the floor below. He was back in the balcony area where he had uncovered a door to a secret passage. Three Executioners now hurried to stop the intruder. "Finish him," one harsh command. "Finish him at once!" He dealt with them as his purpose required. At one end of the balcony an open doorway led him as before to a somewhat arduous climb of several stories via slender stone beams and ledges to a stone passage that he recalled led to Kaileena's library. He took refreshment at a basin, grimly certain of the challenge sure to be faced in that place. He jumped and climbed as before a series of beams to a flight of steps where he was roused by a hollow command. "Attack him first, soften him up for me. I will finish him after." The doorway at the top of the stairs was walled up, and the Sand Wraith

judged he must be ahead of the Prince on his path, since he found it open then. Their destinies were already linked it seemed. His powerful sword served him well. As he stood before the doorway to smash through, masked Assassins dropped down to do their leader's bidding. Especially with unlimited ability to slow Time, such combat as there was bothered him little. In the room beyond, the wall sections had not yet been switched and two Executioners waited in the enclosed space. "You should never have come to our island," said one. Difficult to deny, since every living thing on it wanted him dead. These servants of the Empress proved wearisome, yet he required some peace to crank the capstans and the lever that eventually opened the doorway to the upper levels of the library room. At the end of the linked walkway above he found the secret bookshelves ready retracted, and swiftly made his way along beams, poles, and ledges as he had done before to reach the octagonal tops of the rooms at high level. As he clung and shuffled along one ledge the room shook, as with a tremendous crash the section of wall above his head was blown out. The Dahaka stood framed in the smashed open space. "Where is he..?" The beast clearly had little respect for knowledge or learning. As he clung from the ledge beneath his relentless pursuer, the Wraith found his progress impeded at its fractured end. Since the Dahaka had broken a hole through the wall, the Wraith now saw that he had an alternative exit from the library, with the single concern that the Dahaka seemed settled on guarding it. He made his way back a little and upward this time, crossing to a wooden transom directly above the fearsome beast. With burning eyes scanning the room beneath, it seemed unaware of the Sand Wraith close above its head. On high rafters he jumped sure-footed to ledges in one wall, and dropped swiftly down. At this the Dahaka turned its attention. The Sand Wraith was ready and determined. "Just try and catch me!" He set off at a run, across gaps in the floor down a passage ahead. He sprang back off a wall run, grabbed on to an edge, clambered swiftly up steps. The feet of the wrathful creature thundered as it breathed hard down his neck. Tendrils probed through walls in his path, he dare not even pause for a second lest he be snatched up in their grip. A wall bar ahead gave course to his flight and feet scrabbled at a wall up ahead as he swung hastily into a narrow doorway and dropped down beyond. No such acrobatics for the destructive beast at his heels; the Dahaka crashed through solid stone to lumber close behind as the Wraith ran on to a stone walkway. The weight proved too much and stone flags crumbled and fell. The Wraith jumped forward and clung to an edge of rock. With a furious roar the Dahaka was cast downward to a bottomless abyss. One tendril snaked up to snatch for its quarry but the Wraith lashed out swiftly with his sword, severing the threat and consigning the Dahaka to the depths. He yelled a heartfelt goodbye. With breath returning, he climbed wearily up and peered ahead into a cave, tinged with an eerie blue light. At least here was a basin to

recover his strength. He ran on into the cave passage. Fog swirled about his feet, partly obscuring a perilous drop. Safe across, he swept his sword uselessly in front. "I can barely see through this," he thought aloud. "Best I watch my back. Who knows what's lurking in the mist?" His fears were soon answered as howling beasts descended the wet rocky walls round about. He fought those he could see, winning space to run on down the passage with its mystical blue light. From the haze of the fog all around came various enemies, some with which he was all too familiar. "You have two choices," commanded a near-invisible Chameleon, "Run or die!" In the circumstances, with savage growls of hideous beasts closing in, he decided to run. "Just like your own shadow, Prince," came the hissed threat of a Silhouette, "you'll never be free of me." He fought where he must and slipped past the rest in the fog. All of a sudden he came to a precipice, and though he slipped at its edge, clung on. "I can't see a damn thing! Best I watch my step down here." He descended ledges in the sheer cliff wall to a narrow platform, where he was beset once again by devil dogs and Chameleons. He ran swiftly along the cliff wall, sweeping one clinging beast from his way, before jumping off to a rock path. Words mocked his departure. "The Empress will be pleased at my success." The path ended briefly in a precipice. Loose stone crumbled from the high walls. In the still swirling fog the Sand Wraith looked up, where strange designs had been carved in the rock face to each side. He spotted a ledge and made a chimney ascent to it, and on to another. He hauled up onto a barrow path. Intense blue light glowed from lanterns in the distant fog. He could nearly make out a door built into the rock at a platform nearby. He made a perilous leap to it. "Careful," he cautioned himself, "careful." He paced gingerly forward. He noticed the familiar symbol on the heavily barred gate that blocked the doorway. "That door," he reasoned, "the switch to open it has to be around here somewhere. If only I could see through this fog." Yet he could hear well enough. The sound of a dozen scrabbling clawed feet as demon beasts gathered around him, malevolent yellow eyes aglow. Like a pack of dogs they came scavenging from the gloom. The Wraith drew his sword and fought back those that came nearest, and made his way along a narrow path nearly lost in the fog. Faint traces of brilliant blue light cut through at points on the turns, guiding him somewhat along the treacherous route. At the path end he saw another, too

far out of reach, but judged he could execute a wall run to cling to a thick stalactite, which mercifully held as he turned to swing off to another and on to the far pathway. Here beside strange glowing globules of phosphorescent light lay a floor switch. He was as certain as could be that this switch opened the door to somehow leave these Mystic Caves. He stepped confidently upon the switch, and then slowed Time as he raced for the door before he sensed it must close. Directly ahead he spotted a series of dangling stalactites, and set off in a steady rhythm along them, flinging himself one to the next, passing easily above the maws of the slavering beasts on the pathway below, until he fell safely in front of the open gate. He rolled through the doorway a moment before it slid shut. Fog swirled through the small chamber beyond. The Wraith stumbled at the edge of a shallow pit. At its floor was a switch, and climbing out, he found a small gate had been opened, though for the shortest time. Beyond it, growling Scavengers obstructed a narrow stone walkway. A Chameleon dropped down close beside him. "Tell me when you're going to be ready to fight for real." He had other matters to attend. The fog was thick as ever, and as he made his way hastily the Wraith nearly had his feet cut off by twin saw blades in his path. Two more lay close behind, and he stepped cautiously, not too much distracted by daggers flung at him by a raging Silhouette a little beyond. As the Scavengers came padding behind, the Wraith felt some satisfaction that they too blundered into the blades and disappeared to yellow dust with a howl. The Wraith hurried on, following each twist of the path until at last the fog cleared. He ran down between rocky walls, deeper into the caves, until he came to a sheer edge. He could see a rock ledge further ahead, and could discern a light area worn across the cave edge out towards it, no doubt the result of the scrabbling claws of the infernal Scavengers that roamed this place. He followed their path, and by a series of ledges clung, jumped, and shimmied his way to a point where the path continued on. Downward again, he ran out on other sections worn by clawed feet until he arrived at a hole broken through a wall that had been shaped by (near) human hands. He emerged at last from the Mystic Caves and took sustenance at a fountain. He headed into a bright passage of wooden planks. A wide pit stood in his way, water pouring from spouts to a pool at its bottom. He ran out to grab a hanging rope, which he climbed to jump to an opposite niche. Masonry dust showered at every move as he shuffled along the slender gap to hang opposite a second rope further along. He dropped to its end to gain enough of an arc to swing, run, and jump back to a narrow ledge, where he held firm and ran off down wooden steps. He was aware of a familiar mechanical clanking and splashing of water. He had returned to the fireplace room. On that occasion he had found open the doorway in the corner, which at present was barred. On it, a familiar symbol. If memory served, there was a matching symbol at the end of the wooden walkway outside, by a hanging lever. As the Prince he had discovered the lever but found it apparently useless, because as the Wraith he had operated it shortly before to pass through this gate. He jumped to the plank walkway where a growling Spike Beast hindered progress slightly. With the way clear, he ran to its end to use the

hanging lever, which surely opened the barred gate in the fireplace room. As he ran back to find out, the Sand Wraith saw, among the water spouts and wooden machinery below, his former self as the Prince. He could never have imagined the strange creature's purpose when he yelled up to it. "What do you want from me?" The Sand Wraith ran quickly out of sight, and then looked discreetly out. "My 'other' self still works to activate the towers. There is ample time to return to the Throne Room and await the opening of the door." This plan was interrupted by the arrival of Brute. The creature snatched the Sand Wraith in one giant fist, and threw him hard through a plank partition to an alcove in a wall. He was knocked cold. When he roused himself he heard a clanking noise through the room beyond. "The towers," he realized. "I -- HE has activated them. Am I too late?" He jumped down from the alcove. The Brute was nowhere to be seen. He must hurry to his purpose. "I have come too far to fail!" His other self had passed through the now open door out to the Mechanical Pit, and the Sand Wraith trailed in his wake. He must stop him before he got to the Throne Room or his mistake in killing the Empress would be repeated. He made his way onto the watercourse, ducking under the paddles through the moat. The hanging lever at the halfway point was useless now, the door on the far platform firmly shut after the Prince had passed. The Wraith must find another route, down among the huge clanking gears and cascading waters of the wooden machinery. As his other self had done, the Wraith swung away from the watercourse on poles to a high platform ledge, but he now dropped off the side, sliding down a red curtain. Inattentive Keepers were brushed aside on the rickety wooden walkway below, and the Wraith turned to a slow spinning waterwheel and more hapless sentries on the walkway beyond. Spike Beasts descended the walls to impede him. He simply ran past and dropped down to a platform below. At this spot at one time he had activated a wall switch, but now he ascended wooden stairs beside. Halfway up stood a basin. -- THE RACE TO THE THRONE ----------------------------------------------At the top of the stairs, a wall switch slid a door briefly open, and the Wraith hurried through. On past a variety of spinning log traps, wall pounders, and rotating blades, until he dropped out to the room with the huge spinning wooden wheel. Via beams, ledges, trapdoors and ladders he worked down the tiers of the central platform, to bound once more through the sails of the wheel. The route out he knew well, and was little surprised at the reappearance of Brute in its customary haunt. This time he had a little score to settle, and for its rude attack on his person the Sand Wraith battered the giant beast to its knees in short order and caved its skull in. He climbed the wooden ledges and made fast upstairs through a well-trodden passage of wall pounders, ladders, and saw blades. Soon he slowed Time to pass through the falling gate. Past rotating blades he emerged once again in the vast Access Hall.

"Tell me I am not too late!" He jumped down to the central platform and saw his fate unroll as the Prince ran away. "All is happening as before," he realized. Yet he knew he held the power to alter his course. "No! I must not let him pass." He deliberately blocked his former self, which helpless figure then fell to the mercy of the Dahaka. Its tentacles snaked out, and where in his previous course had taken the Sand Wraith as its prey, now snatched up the Prince and bore him to the depths. The Sand Wraith knew his painful decision served a higher cause. "I'm sorry." With the death of his former self the curse became lifted from the Sand Wraith. "The Mask," he gasped with relief, "It's loose!" He reached to prize it off. In a flash of dazzling light the mysterious unholy object came away from his face, freeing his body from its strange ethereal form. With the death of a Prince he became the Prince again. He stood ready to repeat the passage of time, but with one vital difference. -- THE DEATH OF A PRINCE -----------------------------------------------He hurried to the Hourglass Chamber. The Empress received him as before. The Prince knew his part. "Time is running low," he affirmed. "You ready?" They walked to their destiny in the Throne Room above. She must not suspect his motive. "I've been thinking, Kaileena," he said. "There is little for you on this Island. And there will be less still once I've stood before your mistress. Come with me to Babylon! You'll have a chance to begin a new life, free from the evils of this place." "I am sorry Prince, but I cannot take you up on your offer." As she walked to the Throne Room, the Prince looked grimly after her. This time he knew why she could not. -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ENDING 1 [DON'T TAKE SWORD] ------------------------------------------------------------------------The Prince strode into the Throne Room. The Empress stood near the door lever. Wordlessly he mounted the carpeted steps to the throne and picked up her sculpted swords. She had expected this to play differently. Kaileena showed doubt as he turned to implore. "It doesn't have to end this way." He came down to join her, tossing aside the swords, which clanged to the floor.

"Come with me," he urged, "into the Present." "So you can kill me in your own time instead of mine?" She gave a contemptuous laugh. Turning to her swords, a cloud of sand whirled at her command and gathered the weapons from the floor. They swept through the air to her arms. The Prince stared, disappointed but defiant. He turned and ran up the steps. The Empress began to run up behind him. "I am sorry, Prince, but only one of us can cheat Fate today." She advanced on her prey. The Prince turned quickly, ran to the throne and jumped up. He drew his weapon and smashed through the wall. His angry pursuer leaped after him with a cry, and slashed her weapons furiously. The Prince took her by the shoulders and tried to reason. "Kaileena... Empress... listen." She raised her weapons again. The Prince held her wrists. "No!" she screamed. "You listen: the Timeline has said you will kill me, but I will change the timeline." He threw her back, and then ran towards the portal chamber. The vortex glowed at the eye of the spiral. All was ready. The Prince turned and felt the Amulet at his chest. Would this work? The Empress lunged towards him with another cry. He dodged her charge, vaulted over her shoulder, and wrestled to control her. Holding her arms back he dragged her around and shoved hard, her face shocked as she was thrown into the eye of the Time portal. Her body was seized in the vortex, raised above the ground. Her back arched, gripped in the powerful force. She seemed to pulse with light, became transparent, and vanished. The Prince stood, panting hard. He knew his next step. -- THE WARRIOR WITHIN ------------------------------------------------------------------Portal to Present ----------------The portal chamber, though active, is dark and decayed. The Prince looks around but Kaileena is not there. He runs quickly through the curtain of water and finds the wall to the Throne Room now impassable. To one side, as before, the entrance to the Sacred Caves. No wild beasts impede him in this Present, and he runs swiftly up ledges and along walls, hastening to face the Empress where she might be. He hauls himself into the ruined passage and sees ahead the dim light of the cavern arena. Beneath his running feet lie scattered pages, others soak in dark waters of a pool as he splashes through and shimmies along a rock niche to climb out. The Prince notices as he runs forward a weapon rack, which gives up a secondary sword. With his health at its peak, all tanks fully charged, he is as ready as he can be for the imminent confrontation. He somersaults in a single acrobatic bound to join her on the huge open surface of the rock platform. He tries to make her understand.

"I know what you've seen - what you think you've seen - in the Timeline." "Then you know I have no choice." He clenches his fist and speaks intensely. "There is always a choice, Kaileena." She readies her weapons with a satisfied smile. "Then I choose to live, and for you to die!" Like lightning she launches a furious assault. The Prince staggers back and collects himself. He must fight to subdue her. He summons at once the Eye of the Storm to slow her attack, and strikes back. She gasps and reels but then throws forward her weapons. The Prince hears the clang of steel as his thrust is blocked. "Ha ha!" she snorts. "It will take more than a simple sword strike to penetrate my defenses!" He rolls sideways to break through from behind. As the effect of slowed Time wears off he uses the Eye of the Storm again and keeps up his tactic. Kaileena breaks away suddenly and he reasons once more. "Don't you see? We can change our fate. This isn't what happened the first time we fought!" "The first time..?" She seems shocked. "That's what I've been trying to tell you," he pants, "if you'd just let me explain." They circle each other warily. "No more words, Prince. If you've only things to say and nothing to show, then let us finish this." "I'm sorry," he says firmly. The Empress raises herself in a powerful force just as she did in her Throne Room, and here summons slender tornadoes of Sand, which shimmer and sweep about her at the center of the platform. As one strikes the Prince it knocks him down with unbelievable force, draining life from his body. He struggles to his feet and runs, winding a path left and right, turning sharply as the Sand veers towards him. He tries to attack the Empress but she is immune, and he is struck once again by a tornado. He cannot long sustain such hurt, and sets to a run once again. He keeps to a short circle about the Empress, staying just ahead of each cloud. Nearly exhausted, he notices one cloud peter out, leaving briefly behind an intense ball of Sand as residue. Passing close to it, the Prince absorbs this to his own store in the Amulet. Thankful for this small mercy, he diverts as the two remaining tornadoes are spent, collecting from each a fresh store of Sand. Kaileena descends her energy field and he slows Time at once to resume his attack. She tries words to cow him. "I have seen your future, and it does not look good," she advises. "You

shouldn't have come here, you will not leave this island alive." He blocks her rapid attack, and backs safely away. At any moment she can vanish and reappear close by, but he stays alert. In a moment he leans forward and jumps over, striking down hard as he lands. He breaks through again and again, until once more she gathers her energy and rises on a force of light. Once more swirling tornadoes pursue him. He stays to a tight circle, and runs the clouds to exhaustion. As she descends to meet him again, the Empress unleashes her own ability to slow Time around him. The Prince now moves too slowly to avoid her strikes, and must use the Eye of the Storm simply to counter the effect. He presses the attack once again. Though he catches a few blows in between, his relentless vaulting assault subdues her. "I WILL kill you!" she screams. "I do not want to hurt you, Kaileena, but I cannot allow that to happen." In her fury the Empress unleashes tornadoes yet again. Yet again the Prince takes off in a run, circling her on her shimmering cloud. Yet again the spent winds give up their residue of Sand, and as the Empress descends to the platform he turns to finish her. With the full force of his blade he breaks through, sending her reeling. He finally kicks her aside, yet she raises her weapon and rushes at him, bent on his destruction. In a furious slash she meets his blade, and is run through. They lock in a painful embrace. "I'm sorry," he sighs. "If only it didn't have to end this way." He wearily withdraws his blade. Kaileena collapses into his arms. "You have saved yourself it seems, my Prince, but still I become the Sands," she whispers. "There will be others like the Maharajah, braggarts and fools who will quest for the Sands and find them." She clings tight and speaks close with her dying breath. "My vengeance will be unleashed once more upon your world." The Empress of Time lies dead on the platform. The Prince hangs his head. From the fortress comes the sound of destruction as something pounds against the walls, breaking through. The Prince takes an involuntary step back. It can only mean one thing. "No... no, how is this possible?" As he fears, the Dahaka bursts through the wall and lands with a roar on the platform. "The Sands are here in the Present," protests the Prince, "not in the Hourglass." Tentacles emit from the Dahaka. The Prince shies away, arm across his face, but they snake out and wrap Kaileena tightly. "It is the Sands that should no longer exist in the Timeline," he realizes. "The Dahaka is doing its job." The Dahaka holds the body of the Empress of Time on a force above its

head, her body aglow with the Sands. It absorbs her to its chest in a brilliant light. Its work is done. The Prince sinks to his knees, exhausted. "Not only have I saved myself but I have eliminated the Sands of Time." A shadow falls as the beast advances on him. "What?" He raises his head defiant. "What do you want?" The Prince groans hard as the guardian of the Timeline seizes him tight by the chest and snatches its due from his breastplate. "The Amulet!" gasps the Prince. "The last relic of the Sands of Time." The beast absorbs the Amulet and flickers in intense radiance of light, vanishing all at once. The Prince stands alone but alive on the scorched stone of the platform. "Can it be? I have changed my fate." A small ship sails to a new dawn. Alone on the deck, the Prince looks to the east. "Soon, I will be home." He sees in his mind's eye a glimpse of a terrible future. He travels to a place of death and destruction. Laid siege, Babylon is a city on fire. The words of the Old Man come back to him. "You cannot change your fate. No man can." The anguished Prince wonders, "What have I done?" -------------------------------------------------------------------------- ENDING 2 [TAKE SWORD] ------------------------------------------------------------------------The Prince stared after Kaileena as she entered the Throne Room. The coming confrontation would be painful for them both. He descended the curved staircase of the Hourglass Chamber to the strange symbol set into the floor at its foot. All nine circular motifs were aglow with brilliant white light. At the center, on a shaped pedestal lay a magnificent sculpted sword. The Prince picked it up. "Good, good!" he decided as he tested its weight. "This should make things easier." ---------------------------------------------YOU GAIN W A T E R S W O R D This sword is not well-known. According to legend, it has more power than imaginable. ----------------------------------------------

He hurried back up the stone staircase to the Throne Room. He strode determinedly along the red carpet to the throne. Kaileena frowned. "It doesn't have to end this way," he told her, taking up her weapons. He came back down, and tossed the swords to one side, clanging on the Throne Room floor. "Come with me," he urged, "into the Present." "So you can kill me in your own time instead of mine?" She gave a contemptuous laugh. Turning to her swords, a cloud of sand whirled at her command and gathered the weapons from the floor. They swept through the air to her arms. The Prince stared, disappointed but defiant. He turned and ran up the steps. The Empress ran behind. "I am sorry, Prince, but only one of us can cheat Fate today." She advanced on her prey. The Prince turned, ran quickly to the throne and jumped up. He drew his weapon and smashed through the wall. His angry pursuer leaped after him with a cry, and slashed her wickedly hooked blades. The Prince took her by the shoulders and tried to reason. "Kaileena... Empress... listen." She raised her weapons again. The Prince held her wrists. "No!" she screamed. "You listen: the Timeline has said you will kill me, but I will change the timeline." He threw her back, and then ran towards the portal chamber. The vortex glowed at the eye of the spiral. All was ready. The Prince turned and felt the Amulet at his chest. Would this work? The Empress lunged towards him with another cry. He dodged her charge, vaulted over her shoulder, and wrestled to control her. Holding her arms back he dragged her around and shoved hard, face shocked as she was thrown into the eye of the portal. Her body was seized in the vortex. Raised above the ground, her back arched, gripped in the powerful force. She seemed to pulse with light, became transparent, and vanished. The Prince stood, panting hard. He knew his next step. ----------------Portal to Present ----------------He enters the Sacred Caves. There is no other exit but the high door above, and as he scrambles up rock to ledges, the Prince knows the Empress must have passed close ahead. He drops to a shallow pool as at his previous passage through the caves, and climbs out to overlook the platform arena outside. His fate will surely be decided there, one way or another. He jumps down to land before Kaileena. "I know what you've seen - what you think you've seen - in the Timeline," he reasons. "Then you know I have no choice."

"There is always a choice, Kaileena." "Then I choose to live," she says with cold finality, "and for you to die!" As she sweeps to attack he steps away. "Stand down!" he shouts. "I do not want to kill you." "Even if you don't want to kill me you will. The Timeline demands it." "No Kaileena, you can change your fate. I have done so. A terrible beast was destined to take my life, but I have freed myself from--" Unnoticed, intense balls of Sand glow at intervals about the platform. At these very words a roar comes from a doorway above, and the Dahaka appears. Kaileena shrinks back. "What is that thing?" The nightmarish beast crashes down. "No! How is this possible?" gasps the Prince. "I have stopped Kaileena from dying in the Past. There are no Sands in the Hourglass." As Kaileena stands shocked, the Prince runs at the beast with a cry of defiance. The Dahaka knocks him aside. As guardian of the Timeline it hunts another. "It is Kaileena who does not belong in this Timeline," the Prince realizes. "The beast is after her now." Its tentacles snake out, and suck the Empress off her feet. She struggles and cries desperately. The Prince is aghast. "In bringing her here I have sentenced her to death." He yells as he runs at the Dahaka. "This is all YOUR fault." A lunge from the Water Sword severs the tentacles that hold Kaileena. She breaks free and stumbles to safety. The Dahaka roars in wounded fury. In the Prince's hand the Water Sword glows faintly with brilliant blue light. "Could this be?" the Prince gasps. "This sword, it seems to protect me from the Dahaka. Perhaps the beast is not so invincible after all." At the first opportunity the Prince summons the Eye of the Storm to keep the Dahaka in check. He slashes at it with furious might, blood spurts on every blow. The Dahaka seems at first to be stunned. It bellows and shakes its fists to the sky, the Prince slashing all the while. Then suddenly it sweeps an arm across its attacker, knocks him back, scratching to the very rim of the platform. He regains his feet, rushes in again, and slashes over and over. The belly of the Dahaka glows at once, as its tentacles are unleashed, sweeping around. The Prince rolls and continues to slash. As the effect of his Time power wears off he invokes another, gives himself precious seconds to strike.

At intervals, balls of glowing Sand discharge from the wounded body of the Dahaka. The Prince rolls to absorb them gratefully. Each store is another power to extend the assault, yet the Dahaka seems nearly immune. He watches carefully for the moment when the beast sends out its tentacles, and rolls under, and moves always behind it to slash and slash again. It seems to him near three dozen blows are landed but the Dahaka will not relent. As the Prince loses strength, Kaileena lets out her whirlwind, aimed not at the Prince but the Dahaka. The force knocks it flying clear off the platform, where it clings to the edge. The Prince seizes his moment, rushes over, slows Time once more and strikes down, over and over. His Sand is running low; he takes the chance to unleash devastating Ravages of Time. Darkness descends and rings of energy glow in orange flames as the Prince whirls in a fury of red light, striking the Dahaka again and again and again and again at dazzling speed, hacking and ripping through the demon at the platform edge. Though he does severe damage, the effect wears off too soon and even the lightning savagery of this attack is not enough to kill the Dahaka. It leaps up from the platform edge with a roar, flying high overhead to land with thunderous impact at its opposite end. To the Prince's dismay it seems to have recovered strength. With greater determination he runs to do battle once more. The enraged demon leaps through the air to crash down on the Prince, yet he manages to roll desperately aside. Madly it bounds high in the air to smash him where he stands, if he stands too long, and is all too ready to sweep him over the platform edge if he lays stunned. They move around the vast surface of the platform arena in a deadly dance of destruction, each testing for weakness and advantage, and each dealing damage as they go. He manages to put distance between them and the Dahaka throws out its probing tentacles through the surface of the platform arena. The Prince weaves a zigzag course, as they seem to anticipate his direction and lash up, dealing him great hurt and sapping what strength he has left. He cannot run forever, though he is grateful to accumulate Sand to replenish his store in the Amulet, and he closes on the Dahaka to attack it again. Now it reverts to its tentacle sweep. The Prince keeps moving and rolling, getting close enough to hit hard with his sword. Severely wounded, the Dahaka leaps into the air, putting distance so that it might hinder him again with tentacle probes. Running tiny circles keeps the Prince safe. He takes a chance to close on the Dahaka again. Once more, at an opportune moment Kaileena delivers her rush of wind that blasts the Dahaka to the edge of the platform. Slowing Time, and gathering what residual stock of Sand he can on the way, the Prince rushes in on it. With one last chance to finish it off, the Prince delivers the Ravages of Time once again, and the beast roars in helpless fury as heavy blows rain down in a blur. With the last strength in his body the Prince uses the Water Sword to run the beast through. The blade sucks out. The Dahaka slithers over the platform edge. -- DAWNING OF A NEW FATE -----------------------------------------------The body of the Dahaka plunges into the sea. Alone on the platform, Kaileena and the Prince heave a sigh. Too soon perhaps, as a shadow falls. From a dark stain in the water the beast resurrects, rising up enormous in a gurgle of noise and fury from the boiling sea. The Prince readies his weapon. The now blood red eyes of the Dahaka glow intensely. Thick tentacles wrapped in shafts of light flick out and pulse with energy. Yet the beast cannot sustain, and in a burst of light it shrivels

and falls back to the deep. Sunk to his knees against his sword, the Prince gasps relief. Kaileena stands close. He looks up without emotion. In pale light of dawn a small ship strikes out. "Together we built this vessel," the Prince recounts. "Together we left the Island, and together we return to Babylon." Below deck he contemplates alone. The only sound the creak of timbers. Behind him, Kaileena descends to the cabin. The Prince turns. Roughly he thrusts her back against a post, runs his thumb across her cheek. She offers no resistance. Far over the water is a city on fire - the sound of battle rages through Babylon. The Prince moves to embrace Kaileena. She holds him off to take control. His eyes widen then close as emotions are overcome. Desperate men fight hand-to-hand. A golden crown tumbles to the foot of stone steps. The flames of destruction in one place are mirrored by the fire of passion in another. The crown comes to rest against a boot, and a black-gloved hand picks it up. "All that is yours is rightfully mine." The harsh voice of a cloaked figure. Kaileena runs her hands across the Prince's body. In fevered imagining, they writhe in ecstasy. The cloaked figure makes a vow: "And mine, it will be!" For the Prince of Persia, real or imagined, the future holds a glimpse of a loved one held prisoner on a cross, against a background of fire. "Your journey will not end well," the last solemn words of the Old Man. "You cannot change your fate. No man can." -- THE END --------------------------------------------------------------

_________________________________________________________________________ (c) 2006 J Woodrow This document includes an unofficial transcript and storyline from PRINCE OF PERSIA: WARRIOR WITHIN (c) 2004 Ubisoft Entertainment. Copyright is claimed for original material herein and no declaration of ownership of previously copyrighted material is intended or should be inferred. Transcript may contain errors or omission and is not representative work of the acknowledged copyright owner. All contents are for personal and private use and no part of this document may be altered or amended or

stored in a retrieval system or transmitted by any means for profit without the express written permission of the copyright owner. _________________________________________________________________________

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