As night encloses us in its deathly shroud and the events of that fateful day remain imprinted indelibly upon my mind's eye I put nervous finger to keyboard in the fervent hope that should I too succumb to the magical spell of the themes we have released upon the unsuspecting RapidWeaving world, then I may rest in peace knowing that I have left behind me written testament if not of Moriarty's evil intent then of a tide in the affairs of men, which, taken at the Flood, leads on to fortune.
Responding to Lord Woodgate's urgent summons, sunrise greeted our arrival as we finally descended upon the legendary necropolis known as the Valley of the Themes.
"But Holmes," spluttered I, in a state some some distress as we approached the Tomb of Addons, "what of the ancient curse?"
The great man, weary no doubt from a night of deductive exertions, cast me a pitying glance before uttering these now immortal words:
"Do not worry your arse, Watson, the curse is but an urban myth. It has no power over those who know how to Google."
Upon which our guide led us deep into the bowels of the mountainside. Eventually we emerged in a vast burial chamber where torches flickered around the cavernous walls. Lord Woodgate climbed from the tomb to greet us.
Holmes wasted no time on pleasantries. "I observe from your red nose that you are a theme developer. Very well, show me this theme that defies all logic."
Woodgate indicated the ancient artefact unearthed during the night. "We have named it Flood,” he said.
"Notice its simplicity," said Holmes, lighting his pipe and disappearing behind a cloud of smoke. "What does that tell you, Watson?"
"But surely its sheer simplicity is its beauty," exclaimed I.
"A fact I have no intention of disputing, my dear Watson. Flood may well be a brand new theme but I suspect if we examine it in more detail we will find that it's modelled on the existing ThemeFlood website. Hence its name."
"I say, Holmes, is that really true?"
"You can bet your pimply sweet ass it is, Watson. Which means we'll find a clean and contemporary design, vivid banner container and cutting-edge navigation, suitable for a multitude of different project types, such as blogs, portfolios, marketing and e-Commerce."
“You astound me, Holmes! How on earth could you deduce that from so swift and cursory an observation?”
"It's all here in the manual, Watson. Its choice of four horizontal content containers leads one to conclude that they give you the ability to break outside of a conventional 2-column theme layout and build sophisticated layouts using stacks, Extra Content and PlusKit."
"You mean break up blocks of content into elegant columns and banners, oozing Web 2.0 goodness?"
"That's exactly what I mean, my dear Watson. Consider for a moment the wealth of powerful theme settings beneath the surface: the ability to switch between a standard drop-down navigation layout or a mega-menu, or set the content container to span 100% of the theme while supporting 39 embedded font faces, delivered via the Google Font Directory."
"My dear fellow," said I, in a state of some excitement, "that really is most excellent!"
"What worries me, Watson, is Moriarty's intent. Why create such a versatile and powerful theme and leave it here for us to find?"
"Perhaps there is no conspiracy, Holmes."
Holmes puffed vigorously on his pipe. "Or perhaps that's what they'd like us to think..."
I turned the theme over and studied its underside. "I say, Holmes, what does this hieroglyph mean?"
"It's the new HTML5 doctype, Watson. Its mere presence signifies enormous possibilities to use new code, stacks and plugins that are already compatible with HTML5. Not only that, I hazard this theme is also an excellent performer on iDevices, includes useful sidebar functions to display a searchbar, date, time or details of when the page was last updated. Not only that—"
Holmes broke off as an excited clamour arose from further inside the Tomb of Addons. "My God, Holmes, I do believe they've unearthed another theme!" said I.
So it came to pass that we followed Lord Woodgate through a labyrinth of passages descending ever deeper into the mountainside. At journey's end we came upon another chamber, only partially excavated, where a huddle of themeologists surrounded the find. Woodgate prised it carefully from its setting and passed it to Holmes, who subjected it to a moment's scrutiny.
"Seven months in the making, Lord Woodgate? I venture this is no average RapidWeaver theme. Correct me if I'm wrong: this theme promises brilliant results, without overwhelming your content or bombarding you with complicated settings and code. Everything works beautifully straight out of the box. In fact," Holmes added, peering suspiciously at the themeologist, "I suspect that this theme has been primarily designed for artists and photographers."
"Good God, Holmes!" uttered I. "How on earth could you deduce that from so swift and cursory an examination?"
"The clue, Watson, is in its name. Photogenic. I surmise that it aims to create a distinct RapidWeaver theme with a big 'wow' factor. In fact if you study this ancient parchment carefully you can see its key features listed in that typographic style so beloved by Rameses the Orderly."
"Good grief, Holmes! A bulleted list!"
“Exactly, Watson. We should never underestimate the depths of cruelty to which Moriarty will descend in order to persecute us.”
I gazed in wonderment at the historic manuscript.
Holmes' voice jarred me from my reverie. "But you haven't told us everything, have you Lord Woodgate?" Holmes had the venerable Peer pinned against the wall, arm twisted high behind his back. "I put it to you that there is more to this theme than you would have us believe!"
"Please, Mr Holmes! I confess! There is very much more to this theme than meets the eye."
"You refer of course to the two included stacks..."
"I do, I do! The first enables you to easily embed a custom background image using drag-and-drop, while the second enables you to use a warehoused image as a background image."
"There," said Holmes, releasing the themeologist. "Is not confession good for the soul? And as this is the season of forgiveness, I too have a confession to make: that upon reflection of the facts presented, and having eliminated both the improbable and the impossible, I find myself left with only three possibilities..."
"Go on, Holmes..."
"Firstly, that until the end of January 2011, Photogenic is only available to RapidWeaver Central newsletter subscribers. This means that priority support, friendly advice and technical support is available for early-bird purchasers. Secondly, that the theme can be purchased for a mere £15.00, and thirdly, that a free demo version is available to download, plus complimentary stacks, snippets and a comprehensive theme user guide."
"By thunder, Holmes, I do believe you're right! This new theme really breaks the mould and is bound to be very popular."
Holmes, though, looked crestfallen. “I fear I may have lost the plot, Watson.”
“I fear there never was one, Holmes. Perhaps it is all a mad god’s dream, and we are but delusional conspiracy freaks doomed to roam forever within the labyrinthine corridors of our own torrid fantasies.”
“No, Watson, I will not enter politics. I have promised Mrs Hudson.”
"Then the game is afoot?"
"It most certainly is, and not a moment too soon. We must act fast if we're to save our subscribers a good deal of money."
"But surely they know that if they go to themeflood.com and add 5 or more items to their shopping cart, all they have to do is enter the promo code — quantitative-easing — in the shopping cart and the discount will work for any stacks and themes purchased from ThemeFlood in a single order."
"That may be the case, my dear fellow, but never forget that only people smart enough to subscribe to this newsletter know about the bundle discount which is valid to the end of the year."
And so it came to pass that we emerged once more into the Valley of the Themes, and Woodgate returned to London with a hero's welcome and published his two new themes.
But of Moriarty and the Curse, we found no evidential trace. And although Holmes' delusions continue to stalk him through the petrified forests of his dreams, and not a day passes that he does not yearn for a protagonist worthy of his genius, life continues as normal here at 221b RapidWeaver Street. And for that, I count my many RapidWeaving blessings.
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As dawn broke the Air Cavalry inserted us at the mouth of the Sno3 river and we began our clandestine journey upstream.
No, you won’t need your gun. Just in and out, find out how he does it and report back.
We followed Lord Woodgate through a labyrinth of passages descending ever deeper into the mountainside.
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