"Juh. Oh.. Buh.. Buh.." began Grell, thumb moving vaguely horizontally across the card.
"Jobbing gardeners," Fella read over his shoulder. "Know all about gardening, do we?"
Grell's forehead creased in concentration. "No" he replied, eventually, and put the card back on the rack, creasing it badly, and reached for the next one, advertising a requirement for an advanced nuclear magician at the mushroom plantations.
"Hang on a minute - we know someone who does."
The job started the next day. With just twelve hours to learn something about gardening, there was only one person who could help: Fella's Fairy Godmother, Ariel.
"The most important thing is to make the disenchanted creatures good again," began Ariel.
"How?" asked Fella. Grell was waiting outside.
"Well, by hitting them mainly," admitted Ariel. "It's a job far more suited to Other Species." She gave Fella one of those stares which expressed her disapproval of Other Species in general, and Dwarves in particular.
"-YOU PRESS THE FIRE BUTTON-" boomed a deep voice from above.
"And spells, of course," continued Ariel, frowning vaguely. "But the better spells can be quite expensive, and since you left that wonderful job at the palace..."
"Mother..." growled Fella.
Get back to gardening, thought Fella. Aloud, she said: "All these spells ... how do I carry them all?"
"Fortunately for you, duck," Ariel looked sternly at Fella's outfit, "you don't need any pockets: They're all in your head, see."
"So how do I choose the spell I want to use?"
"You just pick it, silly. Sparklers and Wheel spells would be best. Starbursts are fine, but more for your macho types... Oh, and they don't work on snails."
"-YOU DUCK. THEN USE THE LEFT AND RIGHT KEYS TO SELECT A SPELL. THEN USE THE FIRE BUTTON TO CAST THAT SPELL-" intoned the voice. "-IF NO SPELL IS SELECTED, YOU WILL USE YOUR FISTS-"
"And if I've run out of that particular spell, then I just hit them?"
"-THAT'S WHAT I JUST SAID-"
"That's right duck, but if you'll take my advice," - Ariel knew full well she'd probably be ignored, but figured what the hell - "You'll hide in the nearest building and wait for them to go away."
"-SOME SPELLS ONLY WORK WHILST STATIONARY OR WHILST AIRBORNE: YOU WILL SKID TO A HALT OR DUCK AUTOMATICALLY WHEN YOU PRESS FIRE-" commented the voice, cryptically.
"Yes, right. Now how about flowers? They just need putting in vases of water around the place, right? Like at the palace?"
"Hmmm... not quite, duck. Flowers need good soil to grow in. Nice green stuff that you find on the ground." A bit too sarcastic perhaps, thought Ariel, but it'd get the message across.
"-MOST PLANTS ONLY GROW IN SUN-LIT GROUND, UNSHADED BY ANY OTHER OBJECTS. ON THE OTHER HAND, CREEPERS WILL ONLY GROW ON SOIL EMBANKMENTS-" added the voice.
Ariel continued, "You should be good at making the ground healthier: just needs a quick sprinkle of Fairy dust, and Bob's your uncle. Rain helps, too, if the clouds are friendly."
"-SELECT THE FAIRY DUST SPELL, THEN PRESS FIRE WHILST AIRBORNE-"
"And then the flowers grow all by themselves?"
"No" - grief, how on earth has she managed to get this far in life without knowing a thing? Whatever did they get up to in that palace all day? "You have to plant them in the soil. Seeds, you know."
"But my hands would get all dirty!" Fella decided that the division of labour between herself and Grell would put flower planting strictly in his hands.
"Getting dirty's the least of your worries, duck. Disenchanted creatures can be downright nasty. Particularly the big ones. Elves can be pure evil if a bit of bad enchantment gets into 'em."
"You mean gardening's dangerous???"
"-IF YOU BECOME UNCONSCIOUS, SOMEONE ELSE MUST ADMINISTER A BREATH OF LIFE SPELL TO YOU QUICKLY, OR YOU WILL DIE-" proclaimed the voice, reassuringly.
"Well, there are invulnerability spells, and you should always carry a little something to keep you going. Trouble is, it all costs money, and pebbles are hard to come by."
"-I TAKE IT YOU KNOW THAT MAGIC MONEY IS COUNTED IN PEBBLES?-" asked the voice.
"But I've only got ten pebbles!"
"Well, you'll get paid once you've done the first garden, so long as you've improved it a bit. And I dare say you'll be paid a bit by each creature you save from the disenchantment, eh?"
"Grief, I'm starting to wish we'd gone for the nuclear magician post." groaned Fella, making for the door.
"And don't forget you can't swim!" shouted Ariel after her...
Hints And Tips
Zap creatures using spells. Fists aren't nearly as effective.
To hit caterpillars you'll probably need to duck.
You can't swim! Water is dangerous!
to get lots of cash at the end of a level, you'll need to:
Improve the soil using Fairy Dust
Plant flowers and creepers on healthy soil.
Get everything done quickly!
Grell's Starburst spell does not work on snails!
Q,A - Move left/right (whilst standing/flying) OR Select spell (whilst ducking), O - Jump/Take off, P - Duck, SPACE - Fire selected spell
In the shop:
Q,A,O,P - Move the cursor, SPACE - Buy/Sell highlighted spell
You may use a joystick if you prefer.
At all times:
ENTER - Swap between characters, Caps-1 - Quit, Caps-2 - Pause
Use the Loader option on a 128K Spectrum.
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