Report

My name is Abe Corson and I am a computer science student at Virginia Tech.  On
Saturday, I attended a Richmond Comix Type 1 tournament in Richmond, VA.  This
is what happened.

Last week
While I was hanging around in #bdchat on irc, Azhrei and Sssmwc both remind me
of the upcoming Richmond Comix tournament.  Azh mentions that if we arrive early
enough on Friday, we can playtest with he and the rest of team Iron Chef.  Neat!
I consult with my trusty sidekick Egon who is willing to attend, provided I can
build him a deck.  I give him a few .dec files and ask him to tell me which one
he wants me to build for him.  In the next couple of days, I ask both Azh and
Sssmwc if I can borrow a few things.  Together, they can supply everything I
would need to build Egon something decent.  I tell Azh that we can make it on
Friday if he knows a good place for us to sleep.  He suggests that his floor is
always open, and that's good enough for me.  Egon and I make plans to leave
Friday afternoon.

Friday
After class on Friday, Egon and I head out.  We arrive at Richmond University in
a reasonable amount of time, and Azh meets us in the parking lot.  He shows us
his dorm room and I am so jealous.  My room is at VT is much smaller.  This
wouldn't bother me too much except for the fact that my room is a double (and of
course contains an evil roommate), whereas Azh gets his entire room to himself. 
He only has to share a bathroom with two other guys, whereas I've been forced to
change my movement cycle such that it occurs MWF at 12:00 pm (just after the
bathrooms are cleaned), as I don't dare to use a toilet any time else.  Further
shocking to me is the fact that when Azh leaves his room, he doesn't bother to
lock his bedroom door.  If you leave a door unlocked in the building in which I
live, and you aren't in the room, someone is likely to come in and steal
everything in it, including the university-owned desks, beds, and the sink.  And
if you are in the room at the time, your body will probably get stripped and
sold for parts as well.
After dropping off our stuff, we head out to pick up Sliverking for the playtest
session.  Team Iron Chef has a very unique way of playtesting.  First of all, it
takes place in what one might think would be a very distracting location. 
Secondly, it involves a lot less actual manipulation of cards than one would
think, and a lot more beer.  Regardless, I have an extremely good time and am
certainly willing to do it again, anytime.  We finish at around 3:00 am or so,
and head back to Azh's room.  
Borrowing about 10 cards from Azh, I assemble most of Egon's deck.  It's still
missing a Yawgmoth's Will and a couple of Nether Voids, but Sssmwc had
graciously offered to lend us the necessary Voids, so I play it cool.  I think
that Azh was a little disgusted at how unprepared we were, but I shrug it off
and try to blame Egon.  Anyway, we plan to wake up at 9 am or so, and the plan
is that Egon and I will sleep on the floor.  And I do mean the floor.  No
blanket or pillow or anything.  I think of the experience as a test of my
fortitude and a challenge to see how much actual sleep I can get before 9 am. 
Egon thinks of it as an experience to test his ability to complain. I'm still
not tired enough to sleep at around 4 or so, so I grab my phone and check my
messages, make a few calls, play some snake, etc for a bit, then it's back to
the floor.  
My personal definition of falling asleep (especially when you don't want to) is
the process of forgetting that you are awake.  When you lay in bed, the most
significant factor that keeps you awake is the thought of where you are and what
you are trying to do.  If you can just think about other things, eventually you
will forget yourself and slip away.  If you are uncomfortable, that discomfort
reminds you of yourself and makes it harder to fall asleep.  Thus, I tried to
focus as little as possible on what the floor felt like, and more about my life
in general.  I managed to accomplish this after a little while, and get about 3
hours or so of scattered sleep.  This is more than I get on a regular school
night, so I feel fine by the next morning.

Saturday
In the morning, those of us who aren't filthy people get showered, and off we
go.  We stop at Burger King and get some breakfast 'food.'  Cini minis are good!
Then we head into RC and wait for a bit.  I procure the necessary Voids from
Mr. Shane Stoots (Sssmwc), and eventually Jordan Chavez shows up from NOVA.  I
get the Yawgmoth's Will from him, and Egon has his deck.  I tell Egon that due
to the fact that about 10 cards in it belong to neither me nor him (and the rest
of them belong to ME), he needs to be very careful when shuffling.  I suggest
that he only pile shuffle, and definately not riffle.  He agrees, but I silently
wonder what the actual chance of him following through with this is, and realize
that it's not very high.  Later that day, when I get my cards back and find that
my Powder Kegs have virtually been CREASED IN HALF due to heavy shuffling, I
have a little talk with Egon.  Luckily, the cards that we borrowed all seemed to
be in the same condition as when we got them, so I feel relieved about giving
those back.
I talk to Jordan for a bit and ask him what's up and why he isn't at Tech this
semester.  I can't remember the specifics of it, just that it was intentional. 
I find out that Jordan is playing Stompy today, at which I am very surprised. 
He shows me his so-called Concordant Crossroads tech, (Enchant World status and
thus vanquishes The Abyss) but I complain that I heard about this a good six
years ago.  So, I guess it's more like refurbished tech, rather than new tech. 
But anyway, we have time for one game before the tournament begins, and he does
indeed beat me.  He is at 5 life with one creature and one card in hand, staring
down my Morphling.  I am at 2 life, but I have a Misdirection in hand, so I
assume I'm ok.  He plays Concordant Crossroads, another a 2/1 creature.  I can't
block, both, so I lose.  I'm siding 2 Moats today, but he shows me sideboarded
Elvish Lyrists.  I mention that those should be Druid Lyrists instead, due to
potential Engineered Plagues.  He agrees, but he just didn't have any Druids.  I
lend Jordan my spare Mox Emerald and some Null Rods, and the tournament is
underway.
Anyway, in the interest of making my reports more about magic, and less about me
(and less about making fun of Egon) I will now conclude the personal experience
section.  I'd prefer to write another few pages on the topic, but I don't know
yet if the Bdominia community appreciates the "Wakefieldian-style reports" or
not.  Feedback would be appreciated.
As always, I'm playing Keeper.  Here's the list:
4 Tundra
4 Underground Sea
3 Volcanic Island
4 City of Brass
1 Undiscovered Paradise
3 Wasteland
1 Strip Mine
1 Library of Alexandria
1 Mox Pearl
1 Mox Sapphire
1 Mox Jet
1 Mox Ruby
1 Mox Emerald
1 Black Lotus
1 Sol Ring
4 Mana Drain
4 Force of Will
1 Counterspell
1 Misdirection
2 Morphling
1 Ancestral Recall
1 Time Walk
1 Stroke of Genius
1 Braingeyser
1 Fact or Fiction
1 Mystical Tutor
1 Merchant Scroll
1 Mind Twist
1 Yawgmoth's Will
1 Demonic Tutor
1 Vampiric Tutor
1 Diabolic Edict
1 The Abyss
1 Balance
1 Dismantling Blow
1 Sylvan Library
1 Regrowth
1 Gorilla Shaman
1 Fire/Ice
1 Zuran Orb
SB:
2 Moat
1 Aura Fracture
4 Red Elemental Blast
1 Hurkyll's Recall
2 Cop: Red
2 Compost
1 Ivory Mask
1 Scrying Glass
1 Timetwister
A few notes on the evolution of this deck.  First, I want to apologize in
advance to those who have really inspired me to think about Keeper (D'Avanzo, et
al), in that I'm sure anything I have recently come to understand about Keeper
is likely to sound very trite to those who clearly know more about the deck than
me.  However, this report is a personal account of my experience, and thus I
feel that an account of my thoughts behind the deck is justly warranted.
I resisted including Fire/Ice until the bitter end, as I still had faith in
Swords to Plowshares.  I felt that it was really only worth playing if you are
also using a Merchant Scroll, and I never really had the room for that.  I had
previously used 3 Fact or Fictions, and as of last month, I was still testing
replacements.  After quite a bit of trial and error, I deemed that I should
replace one FoF with a Braingeyser, and after much consideration, that I should
replace the other one with a Merchant Scroll (it surprised me to find out that
was the exact same change that many other Keeper players made).  Thus, in my
mind, Fire/Ice became slightly better than StP, so I finally made the switch.
I am beginning to feel differently about Timetwister.  A few months ago, I felt
that the argument that "it usually helps your opponent more than it helps you"
was unconditional and absolute, and I would never have considered using it.  But
now I realize now that being extremely consistent and/or redundant and "playing
it safe" really isn't what Keeper is all about.  I submit that consistency of
design isn't as important to Keeper as it is, for example, to BBS.  If this were
not true, how else could using over 30 single copies of cards be justified? 
While maintaining control is still top priority, Keeper is significantly more
interested in the "silver bullet" and "playing as many broken cards as possible"
strategy than other decks.  Timetwister is and always has been a broken card,
and thus seems like it would play into this idea.  Controlling the game is of
course the most important goal of the Keeper player.  But I now feel that it is
not appropriate to completely ignore Timetwister's more broken prospects, such
as playing it on the first turn with a land and two Moxes.  However, the fact
remains that it still completely screws up Yawgmoth's Will (and to a lesser
extent, Regrowth), and as such, I am still not ready to play with it main deck. 
I did, however, include it in the sideboard in the hopes that I would be able to
side it in occasionally purely for the purpose of testing it.
I completely lifted the Hurkyll's recall idea from one of Azh's reports.  I
believe that Funker is a difficult matchup for me, and this, in theory, would be
helpful.  Particularly, I found the "eot, Recall funker, untap and Twist"-play
very appealing.  Please note that the Twist just mentioned may be interpreted as
either Mind Twist *or* Timetwister.
The Composts were of course a response to the heavy mono black environment of
Richmond Comix, which, as I have come to learn, is essentially the only thing
that can be counted upon about the RC metagame.  I do not believe in siding Cop:
Black for this matchup for two distinct reasons.  Most importantly, black has a
propensity to actually remove your white enchantments.  This is much different
than the matchup against Sligh.  Against Sligh, you have only to play the Cop:
Red, and hold all of your further counterspells for the eventual Anarchy.  Yes,
Sligh will likely fight back with Red Blasts, but I would still put money on the
Keeper player in the matchup every time.  Dropping a Cop: Black v. a suicide
deck affords Keeper no such luxory.  If Keeper is Hymed and/or Duressed while
holding counterspells, counterspells will be removed from the Keeper player's
hand one way or another.  If too many of Keeper's non-CoB lands are being
Sinkholed, Keeper must also invest some more of its counterspells to deal with
this.  Thus, it is not impossible for a Suicide deck to force through a Dystopia
in the wake of a Hymn or a Duress, and thus remove the Cop: Black.  So, any
white or green potential solution that a Keeper player may have to mono black
are fleeting.  As such, whatever that solution is, it had better actually *do
something* during the turns immediately after which it is played, otherwise, it
will do nothing at all.  
Compost is such a solution.  When I play Compost, I almost always draw a few
cards off of it.  If and when I lose it to a Dystopia, it does not ruin the game
for me, because Compost has already done its job, and hopefully I have used it
to draw into something helpful.  Losing a Cop: Black to a Dystopia, however, is
often the beginning of the end for the Keeper player.  Additionally, Compost
occasionally wins me the game all by itself.  Example:
Me: "Let's see... CoB, Pearl, tap both, Compost?  Done."
Suicide black:  "Hm... ok, Swamp, Dark Ritual, Hypnot..."
Me:  "Hang on."  *draw from Compost: Force of Will*
Suicide black:  "Hypnotic Specter?"
Me:  "Pitch a Mana Drain to Force of Will that."  *draw from Compost: Compost*
etc.
My second reason for a lack of faith in Cop: Black in contrast to substantial
faith in Cop: Red is the colorless damage factor.  First of all, Cop: Black is
essentially useless in the Pox matchup, due to Steel Golems, Cursed Scrolls, The
Racks, what have you, while Compost is far from useless.  But a comparable
number of colorless damage sources within a sligh deck is unheard of. 
Additionally, I maintain that Thran Lens is a good card, even though it does not
seem to be in fashion.  Thran Lens is very helpful in a suicide sideboard, as
100% of suicide's damage sources are permanents.  The Lens never appears in
Sligh sideboards, however, as about half of Sligh's damage sources are red and
would thus be unaided by it.
Finally, the Ivory Mask was my solution to Sligh's Cursed Scrolls.  The argument
could be made that a few Powder Kegs are better than the Mask for this purpose,
but I lent my Powder Kegs to Egon for the day, so this is moot.
Round 1
Please note that my brain has atrophied somewhat since Saturday, so I may not be
100% correct with my account of activities.  Bear with me.
One thing to note is that because of the large turnout, the tournament
organizer, Frank, decided upon 5 rounds of swiss, with a top 4, as opposed to 4
rounds of swiss with a top 8.  How this was intended to save anybody time is
beyond me.
Me. v. Egon (Nether Void)
Game 1:
Damn.  Why make a 4 hour trip to Richmond each month when we can just play each
other in a study lounge?  I expect to lose this matchup and I mention this to
Egon who shrugs.  He starts with a swamp and is done. That's good for me.  I
play a land and a Mox, then play Sylvan.  He Hymns me on his next turn, but
fails to hit the Morphling in my hand.  The 3rd card on top of my library is
Black Lotus.  I draw it, play it and another blue-producing land, then tap out
for Morphling.  Having built Egon's deck, I know that he has no solution to
this, and it's really just a matter of time.  I have control for the rest of the
game.  He plays a Necropotence at some point, and goes up to 7.  I tutor for a
Mind Twist, and on my turn, disgustingly twist him for 7.  I attack with the
Morphling enough times to lock him, and he concedes.
Sideboard:  
out- Braingeyser (aka the sacrificial lamb), Gorilla Shaman
in- 2 compost
I took out the Geyser essentially out of habit, but with the pretense in mind
that it would be better to facilitate card advantage through Compost instead of
through X spells.  Even though Egon is using my spare Mox Jet, the Gorilla
Shaman clearly isn't worth it here.
Game 2:
Egon again starts with a Swamp, but no other first turn play.  Poor Egon.  I
play a Volcanic Island and a Mox Ruby.  Egon plays Rishadan port, then Rituals
out a Negator.  My hand contains a Strip Mine and a Mystical Tutor, so I allow
this.  At the end of his turn, I tutor for the Fire/Ice.  I untap, play Strip to
take out his Swamp, then Fire his Negator for 2, forcing him to sacrifice the
rest of his permanents.  Egon seems to not be able to draw any more Swamps until
well after it is too late, and he dies hard to a Morphling.
Round 2:
Me v. Steven Barkley (Pox)
Game 1:
This gentleman was certainly a pleasure to play against, as he was very was nice
and polite throughout the entire match.  Anyway, he wins the die roll and will
be going first.  My hand contains 5 Lands, a Mox, and a Sylvan, which seems
passable to me.  Steve Rituals out a first turn Steel Golem, and surprisingly, I
can't draw a single thing to help.  In fact, I don't draw anything else this
game except for lands, a Regrowth, and a Force of Will.  Perhaps I should have
Parised, but it seemed like a good enough hand to me.
Sideboard:
out- Braingeyser, The Abyss, Firce/Ice
in- 2 Moat, 1 Compost
My choices here were I think relatively obvious.  I believed that Abyss was
practically usless in this matchup (I didn't find out until later that Steve
played with Lurking Jackals), so I felt that Moat would be better against his
Factories and Steel Golems.  Also, I felt Fire/Ice wouldn't be as helpful
because of the perceived lack of Lurking Jackals.  I only brought in a single
Compost due to his heavy dependance upon artifacts.
Game 2:
I get Duressed and Hymed, and eventually topdeck the Compost.  Steve Poxes,
Wastes one of my remaining lands, and plays a Steel Golem.  I'm not able to draw
much of anything helpful, but I do get a Gorilla Shaman. Eventually, I block the
Golem with the Shaman, even though my life total is relatively high.  This was
clearly a mistake, as after Steve's attack, he plays a Cursed Scroll.  I die
very dead.
Round 3:
Me v. Chuck Myers (Suicide)
Game 1:
This is the third mono black matchup in a row for me.  At some point during the
day, Azhrei mentioned to me that he was sideboarding Ensnaring Bridges to deal
with suicide.  I think that is an excellent idea, and I wish that I hadn't left
my Bridges at home in Northern VA, but alas.  Chuck is also a laid-back type of
player, and I enjoy this matchup as well.  He opens with a Swamp, but no dark
ritual.  He Duresses me and takes a FoW.  I really cannot remember much more
about this game, other than that I eventually won it with a Morphling.  I
apologize for this.  
I remember at some point Ancestrelling and saying "the target is myself."  The
gentleman playing next to me turned aside to lecture me along the lines of "The
problem with you keeper players is that it's always about about you, you, you! 
Other people like to draw cards too, you know!"
Sideboard:
out- Braingeyser, Gorilla Shaman
in- 2 Compost
(see round 1 sideboard explanation)
Game 2:
This is one was also somewhat hazy, but I do remember losing.  On turn 2, he
rituals out a Masticore with a Swamp and a Factory.  I don't worry too much as I
have an Edict in hand.  However, I come very close to passing my turn before
Edicting him, and this would have allowed him to untap, which would have allowed
him to activate the Factory in response to the Edict.  I say "I'm done... er,
with my main phase."  Then I Edict during my end phase.  Chuck plays a Keg to
deal with a Morphling.  When he has 4 counters on it, he draws a card before
adding the counter.  He asks if he can go back and add it.  I allow him to, but
he would win anyway, so it's unimportant.
Game 3:
I can't remember this game very well, either, just that Chuck's deck didn't come
through as well as it could have.  I do remember that he sideboarded in Disks
and Edicts, and was able to Disk away my first Morphling.  I manage to Will to
get it back, and counter all of his attempts to Edict it.  Chuck plays a couple
of Cursed Scrolls, but obviously they cannot deal with Morphling.  On the turn
when Chuck is at 5, I attempt to use Morphling's 3rd, and ask for responses. 
Chuck announces that he will Scroll the Morphling, and almost choses his card. 
I tell him not to do this, as I have responses.  I respond to his Scrolling with
Morphling's 3rd again, to which he responds by using his other Scroll.  I
respond again with Morphling's 3rd one more time, and he has no further effects.
I use Morphling's 2nd to get passed his creature, and pump it for the win.  I
feel glad to have finally beaten a Richmond Comix suicide player.
Round 4:
Me v. Robert Estrada (see below)
Game 1:
Robert is another nice opponent and a good player.  However, the ruling disputes
that we got into this game were quite numerous.  I think that Robert mostly knew
5th edition and previous rules, but was somewhat unfamiliar with 6th edition and
later.  Specifically, he double-checked that the combat tricks that I was doing
with the Morphling were legitimate.  He is playing a very interesting deck.  It
seems to be a mostly green control deck with Erhnams, Blurred Mongeese, and Ice
Storms, with some splashed blue for power, and a full set of jewelry.  Anyway,
he gets a very quick start, and I was very surprised by his Blurred Mongoose.  I
believe that I cast an Abyss to deal with his Erhnams, but it of course does not
affect his untargetables.  I'm not able to draw anything helpful in time, and
Robert wins.
Sideboard:
out- Braingeyser
in- Moat
Game 2:
I start with a single land and I'm done.  Robert plays a Tropical Island, and
taps it to cast Ancestral Recall.  I ask him what his target is, and he laughs
as though I were making a joke, and starts to draw 3 cards.  I literally reach
accross the table to prevent him from doing this, as my question was quite
serious in that I am holding a Misdirection.  He has to read Misdirection, and
is quite surprised at what it does.  Of the cards I draw, one is my own
Ancestral.  On my turn, I play a Sylvan Library, and on his turn, he answers
with his own.  I Twist away his 3-card hand at some point, and eventually play a
Morphling.  A turn or two before I would win with the Morphling, a significant
rules dispute occurs.  It is my draw phase, and I have a Sylvan in play.  Most
of the time, I announce that I am using the Sylvan, then just draw 3 cards, and
put one back.  However, this turn I blatantly forgot that I had the Sylvan, and
I only draw 1 card.  I don't announce the end of my draw phase before I remember
the Sylvan.  So I say "ok, I'm going to use Sylvan now?" but Robert complains
because in his opinion it is too late for me to do this.
I asked everybody if Sylvan Library had the "beginning of X step" templating, or
not.  Somebody told me that it did not, but I should have realized that it must
have, as there are no such things as phase effects in magic anymore.  Here is my
analysis of this particular situation.  First of all, here is the oracle text
for Sylvan Library:
Sylvan Library
1G
Enchantment
At the beginning of your draw step, you may draw two cards. If you do, choose
two cards in your hand drawn this turn. For each of those cards, pay 4 life or
put the card on top of your library.
This is indeed a beginning-of-draw-step effect, and it is indeed optional. 
Thus, it appears to me that a good 99% of the people who use Sylvan Library do
not use it correctly.  When your draw step begins, you put all of your beginning
of draw step effects on the stack, then all of your opponent's beginning of draw
step effects on the stack, then all of the game's beginning of draw step effects
on the stack.  So, the way the use of this card is intended is to first announce
Sylvan Library, putting it on the stack, and then announce your draw, putting it
on the stack.  Your draw resolves first, then the Sylvan effect resolves.  This
is why when the Sylvan effect actually does resolve you get to see a total of 3
cards instead of 2.
Thus, if you intend to use your Sylvan Library, the rules mandate that you
announce this at the beginning of your draw step.  If you first draw a card,
then expect to use the Sylvan without having done so, then your opponent has a
right to not let you do this.  And if you do neither of these, but instead just
grab 3 cards during your draw phase, which is what most people do, my
interpretation of this is similar.  You didn't announce Sylvan, and the first
card of the three that you draw can only be assumed to be your regular draw. 
The other two cards are part of the effect that you didn't announce, so it would
seem to me that your opponent could intervene.
Thus, Robert was completely justified in his concern.  Regardless, I stood down
on the point at the time because I was not completely sure of the specifics, and
because I felt that it would be relatively inconsequential, as I was a turn away
from ending the game with a Morphling.
Game 3:
My first three lands are Cities of Brass, and Robert plays both a Mongoose and a
Masticore.  It's not looking good, but I manage to draw into some artifact mana
and stabilize a bit.  I get out a Morphling to contend with his Masticore, and
I'm flying through, damage him a lot.  He traps me at some point, by attacking
with both a Mongoose and a Masticore when I am at 6 life, and he is at 5. 
Obviously, I have to use Morphling's 1st, then block the mongoose.  However, I
have only those 3 Cities of Brass available for mana, and Robert has about 6 or
7 untapped lands.  Obviously, he will win the response war, so when he
Masticores to finish off the Morphling, I just let it go.  Luckily, I have
Morphling #2 in hand, but I topdeck the Edict anyway, and dispatch of his
Masticore.  The next turn, I attack for the win.  I was told after the game by a
spectator that Robert didn't pay the upkeep cost to Masticore about 4 times,
none of which I noticed.  This makes me wonder why said spectator didn't speak
up earlier.  In the future, if anybody ever sees anything wrong in any game that
I am a part of, no matter who is to blame, I hereby grant permission for that
person to speak up.
Round 5:
Me v. Eric Debrosky (sligh)
Apparently, there are 3 players at 3-1-0.  Eric is the only 4-0-0.  As I was the
only person paired up, I am confident in my tiebreakers such that a draw will
guarantee me a spot in the top 4.  No matter what happens, Eric is in the top 4.
I tell him I'd prefer to draw, but he indicates that he'd rather play.  I don't
push the subject too much, as I am confident with my deck's ability to beat
sligh.  I begin shuffling for the game, but Eric says that he doesn't want to be
mean, so he will draw if I want to.  We play a few fun games, anyway.
Top 4 pairings are announced, and I'm in.
Semi-finals
Me v. Eric Debrosky (sligh)
Game 1:  Truly, man cannot avoid his own fate.  Anyway, Eric has seen a good
deal of my deck from the fun games, but I'm still not terribly worried, as sligh
is supposed to be a good matcup, even without my Powder Kegs. Eric tells me that
he stopped playing around Tempest due to the lack of opponents, and he is very
rusty with 6th edition rules.  Even more rulings disputes than in the previous
match come up.  For example, he Fireblasts me and asks if that's ok.  I say that
I have no responses.  He then wants to Fork the Fireblast.  I explain why he
cannot do this, and I feel like a total jackass in doing so.  I don't think he
was completely sold on my explanation, but I would have been willing to back it
up with anybody else's testimonial.  I get a very quick Morphling with the help
of my Lotus.  I topdeck a Zuran Orb, which annoys Eric, but I would have won
anyway.
Sideboard:
out- Braingeyser, Stroke of Genius
in- 2 Cop: Red
Seriously, I think this is justifiable.  Red-Blastable draw-X spells generate
card advantage that is nothing compared to the virtual card advantage granted by
Cop: Red.  I didn't see his scrolls first game, so I didn't bother with the
Mask.  I think that he sided in Price of Progress, Anarchy, and some Blasts, but
I'm not positive.  I agree with the idea that Mind Twist is important in the
Sligh matchup (see below), so I leave it in.
Game 2:  He starts with a mountain and a Goblin Lackey.  I start with a land and
Sapphire.  He taps out for something on turn 2, but I can't remember what it is.
 On my turn, I play another blue-producing land, and a Mox, then play Merchant
Scroll to get Mystical Tutor.  I have both a Force and a Misdirection in my
hand, so I immediately Mystical Tutor for Demonic Tutor in order to prevent him
from having an opportunity to Red-Blast any part of the tutor chain.  He attacks
me down to 17.  I untap, then Demonic Tutor for the Cop: Red, but I don't cast
it.  He incinerates me at eot, then attacks on his turn, and I think this was
the last damage that he dealt to me. On my turn, I untap and play the Cop, and
he winces.  He tries to play a Scroll at some point, but I Mana Drain.  On my
turn, I Twist away his 3 card hand, and I belive that one of his cards was
Anarchy.  This demonstrates the importance of Mind Twist, as had he drawn a
Red-Blast in the next couple of turns, he would have been able to force that
Anarchy through.  Eventually, I get a Morphling, and I end the game.  Phew.
Finally, the finals.
Me v. Mark Perez (Gay Fish)
Game 1: This is apparently a friend of Jordan's, who I had just met that day.  I
am somewhat aware of what's in his deck, in that I had heard that he played main
deck Null Rods.  I wondered if they were my Null Rods that I had lent to Jordan
(and that he in turn lent to Mark).  Anyway, I was a little frustrated in that I
wouldn't get to play against any other control decks all day.  He wins the die
roll and starts with Manta Riders, and a factory the next turn.  I have some
color problems, as I have both Sylvan and Regrowth in hand, but no green mana in
sight.  Consequently, I cannot do too much, and I'm not left with very many
options.  I think I try for a Morphling at some point, with FoW backup, but Mark
has double FoW to deal with it.  I lose in somewhat short order.
Sideboard:
out- Braingeyser, Counterspell, Gorilla Shaman, Zuran Orb
in- 4 REB
My brain hurts trying to figure out what to remove in favor of the blasts.  I
was not aware that Mark was playing with Faerie Conclave in addition to his
Factories.  Thus, I feel that if I can just get The Abyss into play, I should be
ok.  I probably would have sided differently had I known about the Conclaves. 
Anyway, I start with a Sol Ring and a Mox.  I untap and topdeck Ancestral
Recall.  I Ancestral myself, and he allows it.  I figure he must not have a
counter.  I draw another Mox, and I Regrow the Ancestral, also which is allowed.
I Ancestral myself again, but he Misdirects it to himself.  I Force, but he
Forces back.  He untaps, and plays a Null Rod.  Damn.  I'm left with very few
options for the rest of the game, and he finishes me off with a Conclave and
some Merfolk.  I congratulate him on the win, as this was his first RC
tournament (although it was only my second).
I get 8 packs for second place, which makes me feel all warm and tingly inside. 
Azh drives us back to campus, where we get into Egon's car and head home.  
Once again, I apologize for the bits of this report that were so far off topic. 
Thank you to the Richmond Comix crowd, and especially to Azh for providing Egon
and I quarter.  
Until next time.
Katzby