Sorry about yesterday guys, some things came up.For those of you not in the know, this is FIST OF SHADOW QUEST, a martial arts/magical assassin quest to find your master in a strange world you know nothing about. You are Shun, apprentice of Sifu Tong, master of the ancient art of assassination – The Fist of Shadow. It’s a style that emphasizes quick, focused movements to quickly eliminate an enemy and use his force against him.The old threads are here: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Fist%20of%20ShadowIt’s getting a little longer, but it shouldn’t take too long to read if you’re interested!
For those of you who weren't here last time, we arrived at the village of Sandoval and found that the one ferry to the Holy City is still operating, but that we're still too poor to get a ride. So, we're headed to a mine in the Darklands to see if we can't mine up some mithral.Here's a list of techniques that should totally be updated this time, I swear: http://pastebin.com/QM8BHiUcInventory: 5 wooden shurikens, 2 doses of Heaven Berries, 385 gp (75814 in the bank), a pendant of Ward Fear, two medical kits, about ten feet of rope, 14 healing potions, a watch, and a compass, 5 masterwork throwing daggers (1 enchanted with lightning, 1 with exploding, 1 with homing), 1 orb of light, 4 antidotes, belt of GO FAST (+1 to attack and defense).
The darkness is vast and deep, but not deep enough so as to be impenetrable. Behind you, a shard in orbit faintly lights up the horizon, but only barely. A chill wind blows through the empty, grassless plains, causing you to shiver involuntarily. Next to you, Erin shakes, trying to get as much body heat from both her and you as she can, although it isn’t very successful. On your other side, Jeanne strides forward unhindered by the cold despite wearing nothing more than a dirty red dress and a small bit of armor. She silently weathers the freezing cold while you and Erin slowly freeze to death. You can see the torchlight of the mine up ahead, the only beacon in this land of blackness. It’s not a big operation here- there’s nothing more than a small, dilapidated wooden shack and a metal track going into the cave below, where your payload awaits. The only thing stopping you from entering the rocky depths of the earth… is the corpse outside. It’s cold and completely lifeless, but no signs of decay have set in. The gray skin is stretched over a bony frame. Upon closer inspection, two holes are incised at the base of the dead man’s neck.You have no idea what could’ve caused it, but you know you don’t like it.
(That's your cue to take over.)
>>19186414See if we can salvage stuff from the cabin before we head into the mine itself, like a lantern or a pick or something. We don't know how precisely to mine mithril, but it seems straightforward enough.
>>19186183I think the amount of shadow we can manipulate should be changed by now in the pastebin. It should also say that we have more advanced shadow control, i.e. our shadows are now self-operating and mildly autonomous.
While Erin stares at the dead body, absolutely horrified, you open the decaying door of the shack and peer inside. Not much in here. A desk, some papers that, upon closer inspection, just review how much ore has been mined... nothing particularly interesting or useful. However, the papers look vaguely organized, as if unaffected by whatever killed the man outside.
>>19186730No tools or materials to work with? If not, let's make sure we have our working source of light and shuffle inside the mine, sticking to the rails.
Damn, you were hoping for… anything helpful, really. That’s a shame. Looking into the mines, it goes down sharply and veers off to the right. Not much elsewhere to go, really. Pulling out the orb, you tap it and give it to Erin, who holds it as light fills the cavern. Slowly, carefully, your group descends into the earth. The cold rocks are dry, and the cave smells faintly like rust. You know that smell- it’s dried blood. As you head deeper and deeper, the cold of the surface begins to dissipate. The air in the cave is still freezing, and it chills you to the bone, but at least you don’t think you’ll die of hypothermia anymore. Before too long, you come across a fork in the path… with another cadaver lying on the ground, grey and bloodless. You glance at it for a second, and turn your attention to the fork. The track goes down the right one into a dimly lit corridor, while the other is barren and dark.It’s not really a difficult decision. At your side, Erin remarks, “Aren’t you guys just… a little freaked out? Like, at all?” You and Jeanne stare blankly at her. You’ve never really thought about it, but you aren’t bothered by death, not in the least.
>>19186860"I know of death, and I have come to terms with it. It doesn't mean I have to like it."
>>19186860Not particularly, I suppose it's a bit cold. And I'm curious as to what killed these people, but not really freaked out. Head down the right corridor, they would be more likely to have the track follow veins and deposits.
>>19186875"Still, we have to be on our guard. Whatever left these...husks calls the Darklands home. Mourn for them, but learn from them."
You shrug. "I know of death, and I have come to terms with it. It doesn't mean I have to like it. And I'm curious as to what killed these people.” A difficult look crosses her face. "Still, we have to be on our guard. Whatever left these...husks calls the Darklands home. Mourn for them, but learn from them."“Well, that’s, uh… sage advice.” Yeah, you sound like a wise old man, don’t you? You motion for the group to head down the right path. The alternative is blatantly dangerous. Following the tracks, more and more dead bodies are strewn about with increasing frequency. First it was a body every hundred feet or so, and now… they’re just piling up. How many people worked this mine? Erin stops you and says, “Um… look at them, some of the… bodies… aren’t wearing the same thing as the rest.” Hm. She’s right. The clothes of the miners are very different from the others. “Do you think they were dragged here?”
>>19186981Probably, they might wear different clothes for the deeper sections and they put them all together. Poke one of the ones with different clothing from a distance with shadows, make sure they all share a cause of death.
>>19186981"Possibly. I can't imagine who would want to stockpile cadavers like this. ...Well, I can, but that's a moot point right now." Friggin' Richards.
Slowly nodding, you answer, "Possibly. I can't imagine who would want to stockpile cadavers like this. ...Well, I can, but that's a moot point right now." Erin cocks an eyebrow at you. You ignore it and poke one of the bodies in more… casual clothes… with a bit of shadow. It doesn’t move. Slowly approaching it, you check the corpse for a sign of death. Bloodless. With two holes in the neck. You’re not stupid enough not to get the connection. You turn back to Erin, “Do you know what could’ve done this?” Nervously, she gets closer to the body, sees the marks, and quickly backs away.“Them. Vampires.” She looks at you alarmingly. “I don’t think we should be here, Shun.” Well, you probably shouldn’t have been in a lot of places that you’ve been.
>>19187088What do we and Erin know of vampires? Are they like the WoD-style, vaguely sociable "I MUST KEEP THE BEAST INSIDE ME IN CHECK LEST I CONSUME ALL," or are they just mindless berzerkers that consume everything?
>>19187145Neither of you really have any idea, but given the immense body count, you're more inclined to believe the latter.
>>19187088What exactly is a vampire and what are its capabilities?
>>19187162Um... it drinks blood and only comes out at night. Beyond that, Erin doesn't have much of an understanding- she never found them particularly interesting.
>>19187161>>19187200Let's retreat for now and return to the entrance of the mine so we can evaluate our options. There's no reason to put Erin and Jeanne in needless danger.
>>19187200Keep on going, we need some mithril and we'll be extra careful. I doubt that any creature of the night is as scary as we are in the dark. If things look like they'll be too bad we can put Jeanne and Erin at the front of the mine and continue forward ourself to get a handle on how dangerous they actually are.
>>19187233If ever there was a place where "LET'S SPLIT UP GANG" was a bad idea, it's here in the Darklands.
>>19187233>If things look like they'll be too bad>thinking this while standing next to mounds of corpses
>>19187286Mounds of corpses are mildly bad, it's only when they wake up that it becomes too bad.
>Sorry about yesterday guys, some things came up.Damn shame. I wanted to play yesterday. Don't think I can participate for the entire thread today.>>19186331>She silently weathers the freezing cold while you and Erin slowly freeze to death. We have cold weather clothes. Overcoats and other warm clothes like that. I specified to take those (and also raincoats for rainy weather) in that big list of stuff to buy. Put them on.Oh yeah, we also have bunch of antidotes. Next time we get poisoned, use them instead of the berries or healing potions.
>>19187343They are on.It's still fucking cold, although I have been exaggerating a bit.
>>19187360Whut.Next time we're in town, we should buy more clothes that can keep us warm at -30 degrees Celcius.... or enchant the ones we have already.
So, are you heading in further, or pulling out?
>>19187417Head in further, nothing ventured nothing gained.
>>19187394This is a different cold. It's a sort of soul-piercing cold.And anyway, let's head further inside. I'm assuming one of us is keeping an eye on our backs.
>>19187442Cold is just cold, unless it is magical cold.
You briefly consider going back and pressing on alone, but splitting up here would be a very, very bad idea. To be fair, continuing further probably is, too. Ignoring the bodies, you continue onwards… into a large cavern… which is pitch black. The only light is that of the torches in the corridor you just came from, and the orb of light Erin is holding. The stench of blood is strong here. In the light, you can make out a few glittering ores sticking out of the wall. That must be the mithral. Good. The tracks in front of you stretch on into the darkness, although it appears that there’s a cart on the edge of your vision filled with something shiny…
>>19187547Halt the party, start pulling the cart towards us with shadows and once it's close enough to actually see get an idea of what is in it.
>>19187576This. Cart first, then we weigh our options.Has it ever been clarified that since we are the heir to the Fist of Shadow, we inherently have darkvision and low-light vision?
Great vampires.Can we sense things that our shadow touches? I say we should extend our shadow along the walls and ceilings of the cavern. If we sense something moving, we grab it.
Caution is imperative in situations like this. Grabbing hold of a handle with a shadow, you pull it closer, slowly, slowly, slowly into the light… it looks like it’s just minerals. Thank goodness. It appears to be mined mithral. Not nearly enough for what you need, but it’s a start. Erin looks around the cavern. “Shun…” looking at her, she points towards the ceiling. Following her arm… a pair of crimson glowing eyes stare directly at you.Shit.
>>19187777Salute the eyes, grab the cart, and backpedal out of the mine.
Saluting the eyes, you slowly grab the cart and begin to back away into the corridor slowly. The eyes follow you motionlessly. Surprisingly, the rest of your journey outside is uneventful and silent. Erin is more than a little paranoid, but Jeanne is as stoic as ever. When you get outside, you and Erin begin to pile the mithral into your shadow inventory. You guess that you’ve gathered around 40 pounds. That’s… what, 200 left to go? Damn. A hand pokes your shoulder, and you turn to see Jeanne pointing at the corpse lying at the entrance of the mine. Or, where it would be.If it wasn’t gone.
>>19188003Well, that's...inconvenient. We would've seen it if it came after us, so it either went down the left fork in the mine, or it disappeared into the Darklands itself.On a mildly related note, Sammo Hung vs. a jiang-shi (hopping corpse/vampire):>http://youtu.be/neTcTIppejM
>>19188060Zombie Kempo. Who'dathunkit?
>>19188060What the fuck did I just watch.
So what's the next course of action?
>>19188106You just watched Sammo Hung in Encounters of the Spooky Kind, an action/horror/comedy where Sammo and a couple others battle supernatural forces. At the end of the first movie, Sammo and a servant of that evil monk you saw have spirits channeled into them, like Sammo channeling the Monkey King. There's a second movie, too.We're in the Darklands, so I figured I'd find something suitably related. Kung fu will not be denied.> Part of the final fight in question: http://youtu.be/E_5chpnvnw0>End fight of Encounters 2, where Sammo and compatriots fight mummies and snake spirits: http://youtu.be/-qDCeNIScp4
>>19188184Let's empty our the cart and get it stockpiled in the cabin for safekeeping. After that, there's really nothing else for it but to head back inside and try to nab some more. If those eyes we saw aren't going to harass us like they did last time, they probably won't mind us picking some of the extra mithril, as long as we keep eye contact.
>>19188237You did empty the cart, it's in your shadow inventory.
You sigh, and fog streams out of your mouth. Time for another trip. Pushing the cart down into the abyss, you pay special attention to the corpses. There are definitely fewer than there were on your first expedition. Getting back into the chamber, you head into what you think is the center. Several veins of ore stick out of the wall, and fortunately, it doesn’t take too long to find a pickaxe. You begin to hammer away at the ore, and after a few minutes, you’ve made a notable amount of progress. A gasp behind you sets you on edge. Erin exclaims, “Shun, the lights!” Turning around, the corridor you came from is as dark as night. The only source of light is Erin’s orb now.
>>19188377Everyone stay back-to-back. No one leaves skin contact of each other. Get a bit more of the ore if possible, but otherwise, it's time to bug out. This is as good as it's going to get, so let's leave while we still have our blood.
You glance at the ore, and then back into the darkness. It’s not worth it. Grabbing Jeanne’s and Erin’s hands, you resolve to get the hell out of here. Erin holds the orb up as you begin to run the hell out of here. When you get back into the corridor, you notice that there aren’t any bodies here. At all. You continue to run upwards, away from the warmth of the deep earth, until you reach the fork. To your left is the way out, and the right leads… well, you aren’t quite sure. You are sure, however, that the right has about 6 pairs of glowing red eyes glaring directly at you, while the right only has one.You’re not quite sure what to make of this.
>>19188549>You are sure, however, that the right has about 6 pairs of glowing red eyes glaring directly at you, while the right only has one.>Huh?
Hurp. The left has 6 pairs of eyes.
>>19188549There corralling us, making us go their way. Cattle to the slaughter. Can we even take on vampires?
>>19188593We've never faced one before, so we can't gauge their power. We're in a really bad place because we know nothing of our opponent.
I dunno.Can you?
>>19188608Well, we're completely enshrouded in shadows. We're in a tight hallway with our enemies packed closely together, all standing at about the same height.Let's do this:From the nearby wall nearest the six vampires, we make what amounts to the shadow equivalent of the buzzsaw traps you see in all those temple-diving games. Have it shoot out from the wall in a broad sheet at neck height to all six vampires at very high pressure, saw blades spinning. It should be more rectangular than circular, parallel to both walls. It should at least pin all six offending creatures by the neck to the opposite wall, if not decapitate them outright. Then we make a break for it.We don't know how powerful these vampires are, but that doesn't mean they're aware of our Shadow Temple Trap.
Holding the girls’ hands, you focus intently for a few seconds. You’ve made a buzzsaw, time to see if you can do one better…A massive, rectangular buzzsaw comes from the left wall and sails into the right, and you hear screams coming from the exit! You yell to run as you kick off, nearly dragging the two women with you. Jeanne keeps up easily, but Erin’s nearly falling over. Your focus is still on keeping Them pinned down as you sprint past them. For a moment, you see the pale, gaunt creatures clad in nearly nothing struggling to get out of the saw. A couple of them are decapitated, and that seems to have stopped them, at least for now. From behind, you hear a mass of growls… and you crane your head to see a collection of red dots heading at you in an incredible speed! The exit’s just up ahead, you can make it…!
>>19188781Throw Erin over our shoulder, if need be, and haul ass.
>>19188781Get to the exit, a defensible position and turn the shadows behind us into a mass of blades and death. They've got nothing on us when it comes to being a creature of darkness, a child of shadow.
>>19188781Throw the Exploding dagger at the entrance of the mine and have it collapse.If possible help the landfill with your shadows.Also, we have a bunch of torches in our inventory, fyi
why didn't we stuff the mithral we mined immediately into our shadow inventory?
Oh right. Erin knows some transmutation Alchemy, right?Have her block the entrance by growing grounds or making a landfill, that way we don't lose the dagger.
Heaving Erin over your shoulder as she screams, you haul as much ass as you can, Jeanne easily following you. Screeches from behind you make you move even quicker as you pull out an exploding dagger, letting go of Jeanne’s hand for only a moment, and in that moment…Holy shit, she’s faster than you! With a burst of speed, she clears the opening of the cave and turns around, ready to fight! But you’re not going to let that happen. The second you feel the cold, freezing air of the surface on your skin, you spin around and let loose your exploding knife, and it erupts, causing the entrance to cave in on itself as you hear the anguished cries of Them below. Breathing heavily, you set Erin down, who says, “Whew… that was… close, wasn’t it?”Ugh, yeah it was.
>>19188899This. She ought to be able to seal the entrance with alchemy no sweat.
>>19188886You only dug for a few minutes. That isn't enough to actually gain anything.
>>19188907"The mine is sealed and the mithril is inaccessible, but we're still alive. That is more important than anything."Check over everyone to make sure they're okay, then let's vamoose out of the Darklands back to Sandoval. We've done what we can here. We'll have to reevaluate our options.
>>19188907So it was, Jeanne could you pull that transmutation trick and block the entrance off more permanently. We got a bit of a haul out of this which is nice. So this isn't the best option, when we get back I'll check in Terec, see if there are any high paying jobs available for someone with my talents.
>>19188951We've never really explored Jeanne's skill at alchemy too closely. We already know she's a wicked fighter.
>>19188907"Exciting"Is our dagger gone? I remember asking for it to be unbreakable even after explosion... of course it could be buried. If we can't get it back, it is a small price to pay, I guess. But damn, that was a good enchantment.>>19188913I see.Well, there ought to be more mines around. Do we search for them or go back?
>>19188978In terms of sheer transmutation skill: Jeanne > Erin.
>>19188951Oh and ask her to bring our dagger back from under the rubble if she can do that.
>>19189013I'm willing to let the dagger go. It's served its purpose.
You let loose the breath you were holding in. “Could one of you close that hole up for good and get my dagger out of there?” Before Erin even gets the chance to say anything, Jeanne has her hands over the rubble and has transformed it into flat ground. Pulling her arm from the dirt, she tosses you your dagger. “Why, thank you, Jeanne.” She nods at you while Erin glares at her. Nobody seems to be hurt, so that’s good. "The mine is sealed and the mithral is inaccessible, but we're still alive. That is more important than anything."Erin sighs. “Yeah, but now we’re hardly any better off than we started.” You look at Jeanne, who doesn’t seem to be paying attention to the conversation at all. Erin notices Jeanne’s lack of attention, which is even more pronounced than usual. “Jeanne?”She turns back to you two, stonefaced, and whispers, “More coming.”Wait, how does she know that?
>>19189078"Time to scramble!"Are they afraid of fire? Probably not.Huh, should have let Erin or Jeanee use their transmutation back in the mine to mine the mithral faster. Why didn't they do it? Well, I can understand why Jeanne might have not thought about it but Erin could have realized she can sue her skills here.
>>19189078Ok, direction? If we can get a direction set up a pile of shadowy death in that direction and prepare to rend vampires apart.
>>19189124Erin was a little too busy flipping her shit at all the corpses everywhere.She is a city girl, after all.
>>19189078Why do I feel like the vampires are going to turn out to be the good guys, and the miners were intruding on their land? And we attacked them without provocation.Captcha: For InsmouthGreat. Captcha is a follower of the old ones.
Well, I've got work in a bit. But I'll totally be back in a few hours to keep this going!After all, things are about to get good.
>>19189150That thought crossed my mind more than once. I Am Legend comes to mind.
>>19189150They're the ones who attempted to cut us off and force us deeper into the mines.Also, Adept, you still didn't answer my question earlier.>Has it ever been clarified that since we are the heir to the Fist of Shadow, we inherently have darkvision and low-light vision?
>>19189199Then again. They did kill the miners, so they show signs that their hostile. If we had found the miners alive or at least injured, we wouldn't have probably attacked.Oh, we should take a look at the mining logs. See what date they end. Maybe the woke the main vampire up, and slowly were all transformed.
>>19189243Your night vision is exceptional, but not magical in nature. But as long as there's any amount of light, you can see fine.
>>19189146You ask Jeanne where they're coming from. She points in the opposite direction of the Starry Seas. After a moment, she also says they're coming from... below. Apparently sealing the entrance isn't good enough for these guys.
>>19189430So. Whats the plan? Is there any knowledge we can scrounge up? Anything we know about vampires? They are creatures of darkness and the shadows. Surely our master must have told us something.
>>19189430Then I'd say we've overstayed our welcome. Let's escape the Darklands and return to Sandoval.
My question is.How can Jeanne sense vampires? Another experimentation by Richard?
>>19189610It's probably how she can sense anything in particular.
>>19189632Wish we could learn that. Or something like it.Shadow Echolocation goooo!
Can Jeanne tell how many are coming in total? Shadow buzz saw seemed to work quite well.
>>19192450That was in tight quarters in total darkness. We're out in the open now. Unless you can justify the Shadow Punji Pits, it'll be a little harder getting the drop on these guys.On second thought, a Punji pit wouldn't be a bad idea.
Good evening, everybody! Got a plan?
>>19192500The girls can make the hole and camoflage it and we can create the buzzsaw that they get dropped in on.
>>19192509What's to stop us from, y'know, leaving the Darklands?>>19192518They're spike pits, but I see what you're getting at.
>>19192525Nothing's stopping you. In fact, given the massive horde of vampires that are about to descend on you, you might want to get the hell out of dodge.
>>19192509Yes.We make them fall in love with us. Get in a love triangle with a werewolf and then eventually get changed into a vampire. All the while, not having any personality what-so-ever.
Ask Jeanne how fast they are moving. We can probably out run them. Shadowburst + belt of agility would make us pretty damn fast and Jeanne can keep up.We'll carry Erin in our hands.
>>19192525So. We run with our tails inbetween our legs. Live to fight another day. Then we warn the town about the vampires and hopefully get a militia made.
>>19192531That was my original idea. Just leave and return to Sandoval with our (albeit meager) mithril supply.
>>19192531Whats stopping said massive horde of vampires from attacking the town?
>>19192553Daylight.The town's about an hour away, though, and the horizon's growing dimmer...
>>19192544Assuming the vampires can leave the Darklands.>>19192544I wouldn't put it that way. Most of the time, we're smart enough to pick our battles. This isn't one of those battles. Maybe it is, but the enemy has numbers on us, and I'm not about to test how strong a single vampire is against us, never mind a horde of them.
>>19192553They would have done that before if they could, I think.>>19192561Lets leave. Run, run away!And then we leave Erin with Khan and search for another mine (there were more than one, right?)
>>19192562Well I'm sure if the town knows what their dealing with, maybe we can call in a vampire hunter of some sorts? Or hell, trick that headhunter into getting killed by them. That'd be fun.
>>19192600Oh, you reminded me of that fucker who has been hunting us.We need to develop a "sense" technique. Something like reaching our senses through shadows miles and miles around us so that we can sense anyone within them.
So: Just make a break for it?
>>19192621Pretty much. The sooner we're out of the vampires' element, the better.
>>19192621Yeah. We can't really fight them.
>>19192626Love how the vampire's element, is also our's.
>>19192649Maybe, but it still doesn't change that we don't know the extent of a vampire's power, and we're not about to be sieged by an entire horde's worth with no knowledge of our enemy.
>>19192679>>19192679We know they can be killed. That's something, but I'm all for a tactical retreat.
The hairs on the back of your neck stick up as panic slowly crawls into your mind. You need to run. “Jeanne, how many are there?”A brief pause. “Many.” You can ask how she knew that later, right now, you have to make it back to town! Grabbing Erin before she can protest, you bolt towards the orange horizon, Jeanne closely behind you. With each step, a burst of shadow jettisons you faster and faster! You crane your head to look at what was the mine entrance, and pale claws jut from the smooth earth, grasping for blood. And not much further away… is a massive wave of grey skin and glowing red eyes, advancing like a pale shadow over the plains, hungering for blood.Your blood.You run, and run, and run, and still… they follow, slowly covering the distance. It’s been fifteen minutes, they have to be getting tired! In your arms, you feel Erin touching your chest, looking up at you with a worried face. “Shun, you’re pushing yourself too hard…” Your mind registers her words, but you don’t understand them. You’re running too fast. You have to run. It’s been half an hour, and your legs cry for mercy. The horde grows closer, frenzied at the prospect of new prey. You can smell rotting flesh and the coppery scent of blood. Besides you, Jeanne breaks her stoic visage, looking…mildly concerned. You would consider this a step in her emotional recovery if you weren’t breaking your body. It’s been forty five minutes, and you hit the beach ten minutes ago. You’re only halfway back to town, and… the sky is dark. Fuck. Fuck. Fuck. You won’t be safe if you get there, and you doubt you can even make it with your muscles ripping apart like this…
>>19192824Eh.Drink the healing potion through our nifty delivery system. They would heal any damage we do to ourself.
>>19192824Leave shadowy murder caltrops behind us, full of spikes, barbs and tendon cutting blades. They might not feel pain, but you can't run on a foot that falls apart.
>>19192824If need be, we let the girls run ahead and we can stall the vampires....Oh no wait, that's what we would do if we were a crazy person.Damn wish that orb of light would harm them.
>>19192824So apparently all the vampires want us.All of them.If Shun were up on his vampire mythology, moving bodies of water (like THE OCEAN) would stop the vamps. Unfortunately, he doesn't know that, and who's to say that even works here?Also,>>19192824>It’s been forty five minutes>You’re only halfway back to town>>19192561>The town's about an hour awayConsistency helps, Adept.
>>19192910Ah, that was a bad bit of writing on my part. You were halfway when you hit the sand around 35 minutes in.
>>19192910Have Erin or Jeanne use some alchemy to light a bright flare in the sky. Something to both deter the vampires and warn Sandoval.
>>19192917That aside, a town like Sandoval can't live an hour's walk from the Darklands and not have contingencies and defenses in place to guard against whatever bullshit EXACTLY LIKE THIS rears its head from there. Hence the flare idea in >>19192922.
>>19192922>>19192950I don't thin kwe should lead a horde of vampires to a quiet fishing village.Run other way. We have enough healing potions to keep us running for a while.
>>19192963Sandoval is a port town with a harbor and everything. There should be a lighthouse nearby we could at least hole up in for the night if it comes to it.
Man. I was hoping one of those Deep Ones would roar out of the water and just drag the vampires, into the ocean to devour.
>>19192963Plus, the flare would warn Sandoval that bullshit is going down. I doubt we can't alert the vampires to our presence more than we already have. Again, this assumes the vampires are able to leave the Darklands themselves, which I should hope they shouldn't.
>>19192979Hmm, do you think vampires are afraid of other light-sources than Shards? If so, we could have Jeanne do some crazy magic shit and make bright fire or flare like you proposed.Maybe we didn't even need running.Also, if there was a lighthouse, I think it would have been mentioned when we got to the village. It's just a tiny fishing village. The harbour only serves for the ferry between Holy City, probably because that is the closest one can get before entering Darklands.
>>19193004>The harbour only serves for the ferry between Holy CityThat sounds like a big enough deal to me to warrant a lighthouse. When your village is one of the main go-between for two of the biggest cities on the planet, you tend to gain some infrastructure.
The bittersweet taste of a healing potion intensifies your focus as you throw up a massive entanglement of shadows behind you in an attempt to slow down your hunters. Sprinting down the coast, you grunt out a command to the girls. Erin looks at you, confused, but Jeanne understands instantly and grabs a fistful of sand, throwing it into the air, creating a massive amount of fireworks above you. You run and wait for the healing potion to stitch your leg muscles back together… ugh, it’s taking too long! You glance behind you, only to see the horde bounding over your field of traps, uncaring of the sparks in the sky. Sweat pouring off your face, you sprint faster and faster, pushing yourself to the limit to save Erin!Off in the distance, you see… a light?! That must be Sandoval! You’re not too far now, but the horde is bearing down on you, howling into the night, so close that you can barely make out the frenzy in their eyes!
>>19193025That would be so and I expected the place to be at least a town but it seems that is not the case. Remember, it is just one single boat that travels very irregularly and carries only few people each time. I doubt it has any kind of impact on local economy and culture.But lighthouse? ... Man, I doubt it. Seriously, Adept, can you clarify. If there was a lighthouse, it is surely that Shun would have taken notice.
>>19193048There was no lighthouse. Just a tall, strange pole in the center of the village.
>>19193046Still don't think it is a good idea to bring the horde to the village.It is a MASSIVE horde. Even if the village has guards. They simply cannot deal with it.
>>19193070Then what would you recommend? Sprint until sunrise? 'Cuz that's a pretty dumb idea to me.
>>19193070They're close to the darklands and have a strange pole in the center. It's probably magic. Get to Sandoval, find a defensible position and unleash shadowy death.
>>19193070>>19193094Like I said, when you live in the ballpark of an hour on foot (at a full sprint, no less) from the Darklands and all its nasties therein, you tend to develop contingencies and defenses, even as a small fishing village. This isn't like Arkham, where you ignore everything as best you can. Still, having to deal with ALL THE VAMPIRES EVER might be annoying.
>>19193116I hope you're right.Because if you aren't then we wont have any moral highground against that hunter anymore.
>>19193081Unless you wanna stand and fight, I see no other option.
>>19193116Plus, this is one of the main points of access to the Holy City itself, as well as Terec. You don't think they wouldn't post some sentries and defenses of their own here at such a critical point?
>>19193143You're making assumptions. We have been in the village and seen it with our own eyes. No where was it remarked that it has ANY kind of defenses.
Tick, tock, tick, tock. Time's running out, what're you going to do?
>>19193167I dunno, punch stuff, I guess. Punch everything around. This IS Fist etc etc quest, yes?
>>19193081See if Erin can replicate that trick she did against the mugger. Turning the ground liquid and then solidfying it after they get sunk into it. We whip a shadow attack at any who didn't get stuck and finally Jeanne whips up a wall. Then we run like hell.
>>19193132If Adept really wanted us to stand our ground and fight all the vampires of the Darklands, we'd do so. Even though we know that the numbers game is highly out of our favor and we'd likely get massacred against so many supernaturals, there doesn't appear to be any other obvious answer.>>19193158I'm aware that I am. This is just my wishful thinking that infrastructure would've progressed more reasonably considering the situation.>>19193167We can't run forever, and unless Sandoval has some ace-in-the-hole to deal with the Darklands, we can't lead the horde there. The only other option I can see is to turn around and massacre some vampires.
Well assumptions are pretty much what were running off of right now, and its not like we have many other choices they are catching up, I say we go to town.
>>19193180That was a basic alchemy cantrip against one dude. Against a whole horde of vampires that evaded our shadow traps like nothing, I doubt it'll work that easily.
>>19193180I say do this, but keep dwindling them down.
>>19193200We'll have to use a bunch of combat tricks to survive this, but I'm concerned a plan like that will take too long.
>>19193196It might not work, but it will distract them. If she can just transform the ground into a liquid to stop them, that'll be enough. Then if they leap over it, we can whip our shadow at them while in the air.Cause as we know, they can't dodge in the air.
>>19193180Sounds like an idea. Jeanne might be able to do that better.Actually, lets have them both do different thing. Erin will do her trick and Jeanne wil lturn the upper layer into oil which we can light up and burn them.
You guys seem to be forgetting about a friend of yours...
>>19193234I'm very much aware of who you're talking about, but that assumes he's still in Sandoval. That flare we shot off was meant to alert the village of shenanigans, ESPECIALLY alerting him. Don't say we forgot him when the flare was designed almost specifically to draw him out.
>>19193234Oh god. Khan. How the fuck do we get Khan?Shout his name into the heavens?We need communicators..
>>19193234Is Khan in Sandoval? If so we go to Sandoval and beat the living shit out of the vampires with our full complement. Send Erin to acquire him and raise the alarm while fighting a tactical retreat to Sandoval. With Jeanne turn the environment into living hell while she watches our back and messes with the ground as well.
>>19193234I didn't forget Khan but isn't he pretty much useless when there are no shards? Isn't that the reason why he didn't follow us?
>>19193286Without shards he's a rape train without brakes, with them he is also on fire.
>>19193286>>19193292I know Khan's element is fire, but I don't remember him specifically being powered by the Shards.
>>19193304I think he uses them to power some of his firey death and operates better with them around, but is still incredibly competent without them, but I could be wrong.
>>19193286He didn't say why he wouldn't go into the Darklands.
>>19193304He's specifically powered by the shards.Tempted into seeing if he could ever access the plane of fire, to compensate for being in shardless areas. Or combine the two, becoming a living embodiment of fire.
>>19193331Only his fire abilities are powered by Shards.
>>19193326>>19193331So our best chance to beat Khan in a fight is at night, which, oddly enough, is when shadows are most available. Go figure.
>>19193348OH GOODNESSI THOUGHT NOBODY WOULD GET THAT
>>19193359Spoilers: it's why both of your fights have been at twilight so far.
So, seriously: Stay and fight the horde, or try and make it back to the town?
>>19193406Meet 'em halfway: fire off a brighter flare to alert the village, and send Erin back to the village at the same time to get help while Shun and Jeanne hold the line.
>>19193406Erin's the freshest as we've spent a lot of time carrying her, she gets to the town as fast as possible, gets Khan and whatever defenses the town has. Us and Jeanne do a fighting retreat to give them time and hold the line.
>>19193406Have Erin and Jeanne do their transmutation shtick. Turn the ground into water and then into stone, trapping them. Have them transmute a field of oil at the upper layer (like a centimeter) and light it up.After this we will see what to do further.
You drop Erin from your arms and tell her to run, while you turn around, a shadow whip slinging around towards the horde. Shooting off some more fireworks, Erin sprints towards the light of Sandoval while Jeanne kicks the ground, turning a stretch of sand into water, which the vampires enter as they dodge your whip, a couple flying into the air as they’re struck. Just as they’re about to get within arm’s reach, just as the stench of death become too overwhelming, the water beneath them turns to solid stone as Jeanne stares unflinchingly at a pair of sharp fangs mere centimeters away from her face. The ground beneath them begins to crack as their monstrous strength proves too much for the rock…
>>19193517"Jeanee, make fire!"While we slice and dice at anything we can.
>>19193517Smash our way through for 5 or so feet then unleash Whirling Shadows.
>>19193517Make a phalanx of shadow spikes that lance from the ground at an angle both in front of and behind the stuck vampires, in basically a phalanx rendition of the Shadow Iron Maiden. If that doesn't work the first time, then just mass all the shadows above the vampires' heads and mash them over and over and over with the heavy weight like we're grinding spices.We DO know how to grind spices, right?
You scream at Jeanne, “Make fire!” In an instant, her hands, crackling with magic, slam into the stone, unleashing torrential fire while you focus intently, nearly splitting your brain open trying to make a perimeter of shadow spears around them. You’ve never harnessed this much shadow before, and it shows- you can hardly keep this up, much less do anything else! Jeanne sees your intense look, and she frowns as she sticks her arms into the sand she stands on, pulling out an incredibly long, thin, and beautiful silver sword. Ignoring your desperate look at her, she jumps over your shadows and plunges into the inferno that still blazes the vampires.What the hell is she thinking?!
>>19193680Join her, they're pinned in for a bit, jump in, tell her to get down and Whirling Shadows as many of the fucks as we can. They'll either have to run into the spears or be stuck in a whirlwind of sharpness.
>>19193680We'll have to assume she knows what she's doing. She's the (former) three-time Gold Champion for a reason. Still, pick off as many vampires as we can one at a time. Don't half-ass it.
>>19193695>jumping into fire
>>19193707The brightest light casts the deepest shadow. Also this means they'll be penned in by spears, on fire and sliced. Also isn't our armor somewhat resistant to fire. Or we could just keep them penned in the fire and push the spears inward to tighten the circle.
>>19193680She probably knows what she is doing.don't worry about her
So, to clarify: Stay put and keep the perimeter up?
>>19193785Seems like the idea.
>>19193785well we're not going to jump into the fire so yeah, keep pushing our control over the shadows even further.
You… can’t help her. It’s all you can do to maintain this barricade, so you’ve just got to keep it going… The heat burns your entire body through your armor as you struggle to keep the perimeter up. You hear a chorus of screams from inside the flames…“Shun!” You tilt your head. Erin? “Shun! Sandoval has a Shard! They can’t stand Shardlight!”You cry out to the fire, “Jeanne! Get out of there! We need to go!” The fires cease in the middle of your sentence as you see pale bodyparts flying throughout the air while the slender girl moves from target to target, wreaking bloodless havoc on them. “Jeanne!” hearing you, she glances at you, wide-eyed, a glint of bloodlust and tranquility shining through her icy eyes.“Jeanne!” She hacks away at the vampires endlessly. She’s not listening. As good as she is, there’s still a few dozen of them left, she can’t hope to take them all…!
>>19193928Ok, now we jump into the largest group of them and help. This is about the state she was in during the tournament, she's not leaving. Try out Whirling Shadows now that there isn't a giant flame.
>>19193928Jeanne's in a bloodhaze, so she won't listen.And at least that explains Sandoval's protection.If we can't bring Jeanne to the Shard, then bring the Shard to Jeanne.
>>19193928Call her out some more.>>19193944Well, this essentially.
>>19193928We must double, tripe quadruple our efforts!
You call out one more time, “JEANNE!” You didn’t expect her to listen anyway. “Erin, get the Shard and bring it here!” You don’t even bother to check if she understood you.Leaping into the fray, a whirlwind of impossibly thin shadows slice everything around you while your shadow wraps around your hands, forming a pair of dark axes! You hack away at everything around you. You’re the Fist of Shadow. Your style is meant for remaining undetected, to use precise force to surprise and kill an enemy. You are an assassin. You do not fight in the open. You do not engage a horde of foes. And yet, here you are, doing exactly that. Sifu would be ashamed. Khan would be proud.“Shun, my friend!” Speak of the devil. You were wondering when he’d show up. You feel his back meet yours. “I see you’ve brought some friends.” You grin as you slice at a vampire, who falls to the ground clutching his stump of an arm.
>>19194107"Good to see you, my friend. Now, lets revel in carnage!"I doubt that after this any vampires will be left in the mine. Should we go back there and get mithral in peace. Though we should keep Erin with Khan and go with just Jeanne.
I wonder what would happen if we stuffed a shard in our shadow space.
>>19194107Combo move! Shadow Fire Tornado!>Chrono Trigger memories of combo techs returning!
>>19194107Good to see you Khan, I brought vampires. They don't bleed, ruins the experience. Let's go vampire smashing, if any of them look to be in charge use blinding strike and shadow feint.
>>19194135If we actually genocide the vampires, that'd be something.
>>19194147Well, I wouldn't go THAT far, but I doubt many of them would be left in the mines. Besides, we can always run back to the shard.Oh speaking of which. It was incredibly stupid to go to the Darklands at night, and I'm not even blaming the players. OP, you can't expect *us*, the players to be IN the quest. One of the great reasons to have a NPC party is that they can point out stupid shit we are about to do. SOMEONE should have said that going to the mines at night is probably not a good idea.
>>19194190Shards aren't necessarily reliable in their movements around the world. That said, we did set out at what was basically approaching dusk, which is a pretty boneheaded move.
>>19194199This can only mean good things.
>>19194190Shards are erratic, my friend.You left at 3 PM, so it can't be much later than 6, if that. The only places the Shards move regularly are in the shardstream, which includes Terec and Crestdale. Anything else is fair game for me to fuck with for dramatic hilarity.AIN'T THAT JUST A BITCH
>>19194230DAMN YOU, SIRStill, should have entered them when the shard was at the highest.
>>19194264BLAST AND DAMNATIONFFFfff, we really should have gone back to that temple and gotten our shard back if it still was there.
>>19194299Nah, that temple can keep the damn thing. At the very least it threw the Expedition of the Dawn off our trail.
>>19194409I wonder if the Expedition ever tried to claim Sandoval's Shard.
>>19194439Sounds like a question to save for later!
OP, are you waiting for more input or something?
You and Khan begin to hack and punch the vampires. Their claws flail around as they try to hit you, but they’re next to useless at group combat. You, on the other hand, aren’t. “Khan!”Your blonde friend trips a group of vampires with a powerful sweep and bounces back up. “Yes?!”“Grab onto me and start spinning!”Grinning, Khan takes hold of your arm and begins to swing you around wildly, faster and faster until you hear something igniting! Holy shit, it’s both of you! Like a tornado of death, the pair of you devastates everything around you, and you feel an arm grab hold of your leg! Shit! Glancing down… it’s Jeanne, who has her massive sword sticking out even further, slicing everything to ribbons! Hissing fills the skies as you feel a bit of light, that special light, touching your skin! It’s Erin!Immediately, They scamper away, growling and moaning, some of them carrying the wounded. Khan sets you down, and Jeanne lets go of your hand. Despite the massive amounts of damage you all dished out, only five or six vampires lie on the ground, and even then not all of them are dead. Damn, they’re resilient.Next to you, Jeanne calms down, breathing heavily. Her clothes are a little scorched, but despite jumping into a pillar of fire, she doesn’t look harmed at all. A few scratches litter her arms, but you’re a little surprised at her performance.
>>19194470Finish off the vampires already present, then return to Sandoval to regroup."Next time, Jeanne, warn me when you do that, okay?"
>>19194470"Damn. These things just don't stand down, do they?""Jeanne, please, next time listen to me when I call out, okay?"
>>19194470Finish them off, though check for interrogation value quickly, bit of a long shot. Talk to Jeanne, make sure she's ok and tell her to let us know before she leaps into blazing infernos.
>>19194470We'll need to refine Fire Shadow Tornado, but I think it went well.This is the part were the suave vampire swoops in, tells his minions to piss off and ask us why we didnt follow him (being the single pair of red eyes, down the tunnel deeper into the mine) And then kicks our collective ass, but lets us go because he views us as interesting.Or something.
You sigh. That was rough. Looking at one of the vampires, Khan says, “I hate these things.” You’re inclined to agree. Erin gets a bit closer to one, Shard wrapped in… some sort of brown fabric.“Hmm… I wonder.” She holds it closer to the vampire, and it screams bloody murder as its eyes melt out of its skull, a gray fluid pouring out a short while later. “Oh… oh god. By Sif Muna, what on earth just happened?” You pause for a moment to try and figure it out, but Khan interjects surprisingly quickly.“You melted its brain. The light of a Shard is a death sentence to Them.” His blazing green eyes stare at the corpse intently. That’s rather interesting, Khan. Hmm. Oh, wait…You turn to the teenage girl who sits on the ground crosslegged, staring at the sand. "Jeanne.” Her blue eyes drift from the ground to your face. “Please, next time listen to me when I call out, okay?" She looks away for a moment, as if ashamed, and she nods. “And warn me before you go leaping into an inferno, alright?” Her head bobs up and down slightly. The remaining vampires writhe around on the ground mindlessly, and you take care of them effortlessly. Fuck the Darklands.
>>19194662On the bright side we made a fair bit. So, do you guys want to go back there? We probably cleared out a decent number of them there, they ought to be more cautious this time. Or should we take our bounty and get work in a different, less vampire infested field?
>>19194662"Erin. Do you think you could devise some alchemical ointment, potion or a bomb specifically made against these things?""Damn, perhaps I should have gone back for that shard after all."
>>19194680>We probably cleared out a decent number of them there>You only killed 6>out of a horde>from one cave
>>19194680We should let someone know about the vampires and the miners. Also inquire about the shard and the cloth its wrapped in. Is it like the cloth used at the temple?
>>19194687I wonder is Jeanne's silver swords did any lasting damage to them.>>19194680I think we should search for another mine.... I really don't want to walk back to Terec again.
>>19194691For some reason I read that as only 5 or 6 are still stirring. Yeah, fuck that noise, we'll just go elsewhere.
>>19194709>>19194718Lets.... lets not ask them about the Dawn Chasers
I grow weary. This run's done. But don't worry! As usual, I'll stick around to answer questions and take criticism and what have you.Also, since I now work all day Saturday, the quest is now moving to Mondays and Thursdays.
>>19194796Combo moves.Can wese do more?
>>19194831How can I say no?
Nobody else, I assume?