Previous threads: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Devil%20Summoner%20London%20QuestCharacter sheet: http://pastebin.com/4keHKgX4Twitter: https://twitter.com/MolochQMLast night, Petra had washed your back, cleaning out countless scratches – the tricky kind, the ones that you couldn't reach without help. This morning, she brought you food while you were sleeping, leaving it without disturbing you. You only wish you could call up those pleasant memories once more without thinking, instead, of the sight of Petra being carried off, plummeting into an uncertain fate within Raphael's grasp.Neither can you recall her voice – husky, with that curiously exotic accent – without hearing that piercing scream, cut off too quickly to signal any pleasant fate. Even now that the pair of Archangels have taken flight – in the most literal sense – you find it hard, impossible even, to consider this a victory. Too much has been sacrificed for that, and the dismal silence that has descended across the shattered street is testimony to that. Only now, with the kind of weariness that leaves you feeling more dead than alive, can you rise to your feet.Elliot, a scant few feet away, stares at the ruined building you recently fled, finally unable to come up with an appropriate witticism. If anything, his face is set in a pallid mask of uncertain horror.Your name is Mia Vespucci, and you know how he feels.
>>44280880“We should...” Elliot says after a long and bleak pause. Those two words are the only ones he can manage to form, though, and soon he lapses back into silence. His glib tongue has failed him, leaving the eccentric young man at a total lose.Taking a few unsteady steps forwards, your eye catches a glint upon the ground. Petra's sword, the blade streaked with blood, lies in a pool of half-melted snow. Even that blade, thrust through Raphael's hollow torso, had not been enough to still his wrath. It's only then, as you stoop to retrieve the weapon that you hear it – a soft sound, coming from the basement that you had been prepared to call Petra's tomb. A scraping, a sound of something being dragged – or dragging itself across the ground.Hope blossoms in your chest, tempered with the horror of what you might find down there, as you hurry into the building, scrabbling down the destroyed staircase. Your eyes take a moment to adjust to the darkness, even with the weak light seeping down from the hole left in the wake of Uriel's hasty retreat. The first thing you see is the Archangel's severed arm, lying discarded in the rubble. Then you see the splattered gore, and the trail leading off into the shadows. Holding yourself perfectly still and silence, you hear ragged breathing coming from that same pool of darkness.Swallowing down a sudden surge of nerves, you fumble out your phone and, guiding yourself by the light from its screen, step into the darkness. When you spot Petra, slumped heavily against one wall, your hand darts to your mouth, covering up a desperate gasp. It's bad – very bad. One of her hands is clamped to the side of her face, hiding some gruesome wound from your sight. The other hand lies, shattered and limp, by her side.She needs help. Badly.>Get her out of here as soon as possible>You've come this far. You won't leave without Joseph>Other
>>44280885>>OtherHave Hua Po and then Moh do what they can. While they are doing that call Joseph and tell him to get his ass here. He must have heard the commotion.
>>44280885this is the part where the hero takes the sword and leaves everything else behind to get the job done.Mia is not a hero.>Call Hua Po and Moh Shuvuu, then call Joseph. WE need HIS help.the ball's in his court now.
>>44280922>>44280885As an addendum. If for any reason he can't get to us have Elliot have Fortuna carry Petra to the Fairy Kingdom while we continue on to spring Joseph. Borrow Petra's necklace and go grab her sword.
>>44280885>Get her out of here as soon as possible
>>44280885>>You've come this far. You won't leave without JosephHua po Moh heal her.
>>44280922>>44280953>>44281035>>44280966With your phone already out, it's a simple matter to call up Hua Po, the red skinned fairy appearing as healthy as she has ever been – that terrible weakness you had seen earlier banished by time and respite. At the sight of Petra, Hua Po's face turns grave. Heal her, you say bluntly, do whatever she can to help.“Boss,” the fairy says tentatively, “Um, I've got my limits. I can keep her stable, maybe stop her getting any worse, but the damage...”Whatever she can do to help, you repeat. As long as she doesn't get any worse, that's good enough for the time being. You're planning on getting her out of here as quickly as possible, calling Joseph to let him know it's safe to follow you out.Turning away from you, Hua Po lays her hands upon Petra's body, a rush of white light pouring from the fairy. The redhead shudders as the energy floods into her, her ruined hand twitching and jerking as bones slide back into place. The noise – a sickening chorus of crunching sounds – causes you to look away in distress, turning your attentions instead to your phone. Pulling up Joseph's number, you press the phone to your ear. He picks up, as you expected, on the first ring.“What's going on out there?” he asks hastily, “It sounds like a war out there, and Gabriel... Well, I don't know what's going on with her. She ordered me to stay here, but I think that was just to keep me out of the crossfire. Listen, I heard some new information last night, not too long after you called me. I need to show you something.”No, you say flatly, Petra needs help. She needs to get out of here as soon as possible, and Joseph needs to join you.“She's... hurt?” Joseph falters, “Is it bad?”
>>44281125You glance around at Hua Po, who shakes her head in dismay. Petra has lifted her hand away from her face, revealing a mask of blood surrounding the deep red pit of a missing eye. Her other eye seems shockingly blue against the red, wide with lingering fear and pain. It's pretty bad, you tell Joseph simply.“All the more reason to bring her here,” the young man decides, “Gabriel can help, I'm sure of it. She'll be willing to use her magic.”Unless it's an ambush, you reply bleakly, and she's out to finish what her fellow Archangels started. No, you'd rather just collect Joseph and leave – fast.“She can HELP,” Joseph stresses, “Mia, please trust her. She's not like the others, I swear! Bring Petra to us, bring her here, and Gabriel can help.”Something doesn't seem to be adding up here. What could this new information be, that makes Joseph so desperate to get you into that church?>Joseph, I'm getting out of here. Follow me, or don't – it's your call>Fine. I'm bringing her in.>Is this something you can't tell me over the phone?>Other
>>44281125>“She's... hurt?” Joseph falters, “Is it bad?”Say Joseph, feeling up to MAGICAL surgery?
>>44281146>Fine. I'm bringing her in.We can trust Gab to keep her word. For anything else, we'll fight it out with the others. If it means letting Uriel and Raphael heal up and maybe Michael arriving....fuckit, Petra's worth it.
>>44281146>Is this something you can't tell me over the phone?And then when it obviously isn't>Fine. I'm bringing her in."I'm trusting both of you with all of our lives."Have Hua Po stabilize her as much as she can then have Kin-ki carry her. Tell him to Be. Gentle.
>>44281146>Is this something you can't tell me over the phone?Oh, I believe him, but there's going to be a catch.
>>44281179>Kinky>gentleUm, wouldn't one of Elliot's demons be a better choice?
>>44281195Suppose so. Fortuna would probably be better. Moh can keep healing her on the way that way.
>>44281146>>Fine. I'm bringing her in.>>Is this something you can't tell me over the phone?Feeling pretty suspicious about this
>>44281168>>44281179>>44281181>>44281223This is something he can't talk about over the phone, you ask, isn't it?“It's not that so much,” Joseph sounds doubtful, “It's about one of the divine fragments. I think I know where it might be – roughly – but it'll make more sense to see for yourself. This might concern Cassandra, as well.”You pause there, turning slowly as you hear Elliot enter. Gesturing for him to stay put, you ask Joseph to repeat that last part. Something to do with Cassandra, he said. Fine – that's got your attention. You'll bring Petra in, but you're trusting all of your lives to him and Gabriel. He'd better not let you down.“I won't,” Elliot assures you, “I promise.”As he hangs up, you wave Elliot over. You're going to need his help moving Petra, you call up, does he think Fortuna could carry her? You had considered Kin-Ki at first but, well, perhaps not. You saw what he did to that furniture, back when you were shifting the Inferno Idol.“I think so,” Elliot confirms, summoning his graceful demon down next to you. Fortuna stoops, lifting Petra like a groom carrying his new bride. You call up Moh Shuvuu at this, returning Hua Po to storage so she can rest. Without a word – perhaps the look on your face is enough to still her usual bluster – Moh Shuvuu flutters around Fortuna, studying Petra for any new injuries. With an ease that you can't help but envy, Fortuna leaps up to the floor above, landing with delicate poise. You, on the other hand, are forced to struggle up the shattered stairs.Elliot leads the way as you emerge out into the streets, striding down through the now unguarded gates and into the church that Joseph has been confined within. This had better be good.
>>44281349>"I won't," Elliot assures you, "I promise."Dear Kurusu! Elliot and Joseph are a hive mind!
>>44281349“Leave her here,” Joseph tells you as he guides Fortuna to the altar, Gabriel lingering nearby with a total lack of expression. Whatever her feelings are about what happened outside – assuming she even knows – she is keeping them close to her chest. As Fortuna lowers Petra down, Gabriel places her hands upon the redhead's shoulders and concentrates, funnelling magic into the worse of her wounds. Glancing across at Joseph, he nods for you to follow him out down a side passage. It leads to a winding staircase, and you can't hide a groan.“The view up here is better,” Joseph explains, “I heard the Archangels talking about this last night. A tower – they called it “Elysium” - that the Archangels themselves are barred from entering. Or, I think they CAN enter it, but they won't – orders from above, maybe? They wanted to find one of the divine fragments so I could take it to the top. They seem to think something would happen, but they wouldn't say what. An offering of some kind, that's all I know.”A tower, just like Gehenna was. So the Archangels have their own little slice of Heaven, right here in the city. So how does Cassandra fit into all of this?“I'm fairly sure the divine fragment is somewhere between here and the Elysium,” Joseph explains, “That's where Michael has been searching – and Cassandra might be there as well. You'll understand why that's no easy feat, though, when you see it.” With that, he holds his tongue until you both reach the top of the stairs and look out across the city. In the distance, shrouded in fog, the tower looms high. The ground between it, however...Well, you can see why finding something would be difficult.
>>44281405>Minor proofreading failure, that's all!
>>44281427The streets are crammed together like ant tunnels, winding insanely around masses of ramshackle buildings that seem to have been placed at random. At some places, it looks like the streets have vanished completely, lost beneath a tide of growth.“They call it a “hive of heretics and deviancy,” or words to that effect,” Joseph says carefully, “It's dangerous down there, packed with demons and “degenerate cultists” - to borrow another term they used. Shrines to all manner of minor gods, I believe, and whatever demons worship there.”As you watch, a ball of distant fire erupts, shattering a few of those tiny buildings. “That'll be Michael,” Joseph sighs, “If Cassandra IS down there, I hope she's staying out of his way. He's a monster, no human could stand up to him and survive. Not on their own, at least.” He lapses into silence, then, perhaps considering what happened to Petra. If Michael is even more powerful...“Listen,” Joseph says after a while, “About what happened...”>This all happened because of you>Never mind that now. Do you think Gabriel will be willing to travel with you?>I'd rather not talk about that>Other
>>44281464>I'd rather not talk about that right now
>>44281464>Other"I should have done more, prepared more, I don't know. We all knew the risks but its hard seeing it actually happen.">Never mind that now. Do you think Gabriel will be willing to travel with you?
>>44281464>What can you do? Rather, what WILL you do, here and now?tired of words, and if he's tired of sitting around, what'll he do?
>>44281464>>Never mind that now. Do you think Gabriel will be willing to travel with you?Gotta bring the waifu along, right? And if she has ice powers that would help against Mada
>>44281614>>44281524>>44281492>>44281483You should have done more, you admit, prepared more. Sure, you know that Petra accepted the risks she knew she was taking, but seeing it – hearing it, even - for yourself...“Mia?” Joseph asks.No, you shake your head quickly, you'd rather not talk about that right now. More importantly, does he think Gabriel would be willing to travel with him when he walks out of here? She might not have your absolute trust yet – although the way she attended to Petra's wounds without needing a word of convincing helped with that – but she'd be a great help out in the field, you have few doubts about that.“I think she would be,” Joseph replies, after a moment's thought, “Honestly, I can't speak for her motivations, but I think she would be willing to help us. I mean, we're doing good, aren't we? If we were to fight The Shackle, I'm certain Gabriel would be willing to lend us her aid.”That's a start, you reply with a sudden tired bitterness, but what's he willing to do? Right here and now, what is Joseph prepared to do?“Right here and now,” the young man replies calmly, looking out across that warren of tight streets, “I think we should all take some time out to rest and recover. You've been through a lot – far more than I have – and you need some time out. Charging into the next bit of trouble when you're angry isn't going to help anyone. Do you see where I'm coming from?”He's treating you like a child, that's where he's coming from – you can see that all too well. Even so, with a mountain of tasks threatening to bury you alive, you can't deny that his suggestion has a certain charm. After what you've been through, it might be nice to try and unwind a little...>Alright, you might have a point>I'm too busy to “take some time out”>I'm not deciding anything until Petra is safely back at the kingdom>Other
>>44281682>I'm not deciding anything until Petra is safely back at the kingdom"Until that happens I am still on the clock."
>>44281682>I'm not deciding anything until Petra is safely back at the kingdom
>>44281682>I'm not deciding anything until Petra is safely back at the kingdom>But there are people who need help
>>44281682>>I'm not deciding anything until Petra is safely back at the kingdomNot quite sure what to focus on next. The fairy expedition might be soon but I'm still worried about the unclaimed fragment. Michael or Cass, it's not good if someone grabs it.
>>44281759We may have to give that one up. We are in no condition to fight Michael alone, much less if Uriel and Raph ran away to big bro. If Cass grabs it, thats fine. She can't do much with it unless she gets all 5.
>>44281759Lets go tell Nebrios about the Inferno Idol so that he'll release Marco next full moon and then go talk to Marco. I have a feeling Mia wants to see her dad right now.
>>44281701>>44281707>>44281728>>44281759You're not deciding anything, you tell Joseph sternly, until Petra is safely back at the fairy kingdom. Until that happens, you're still on the clock – and you can't slack off, just because you feel like it. This whole situation is much more serious than that, you remind him, and there are still people out there who need help.“I know that,” a note of frustration creeps into Joseph's voice here, “I've been stuck here, I know that, but it doesn't mean I haven't realised how serious things are out there. Nevertheless, I think you're right – we should regroup and think carefully about what to tackle next.”That'll do, you decide as you start to descend the spiral staircase. When you've returned to the church altar, you're surprised to see Petra sitting upright and grimacing. Gabriel must have worked quickly, either that or she possesses a formidable power. Still, it's obvious that even her magic has its limits – the empty eye socket that dominates Petra's face is proof enough of that. Perhaps some dark thought surfaces in your expression because, when Petra sees you, she forces a smile.“Not so bad, yes?” she says, putting on a brave face, “Now I'm completely human again, at least!”That's... certainly one way of looking at things.“I can walk,” she assures you, “Fighting? Maybe not yet though.”“She will need time to rest,” Gabriel reminds you, “Her hand, especially. I believe Raphael crushed it, the bones were... damaged, needless to say. I must admit, I was a little surprised to see you making a move so soon. It even took my fellow angels unaware. I must warn you – they'll be out for your blood, once they've recovered. However...” a frown crosses her face, here, “Perhaps it's nothing, but I wasn't expecting them to retreat. Normally, they would fight to the death. God's will demands it.”
>>44281905>“Her hand, especially. I believe Raphael crushed it, the bones were... damaged, needless to say.Hey Petra, you have something in common with Amelia now!
If we want a target that both Gab and Cern would want to tackle, it's that giant worm thing.Just Gab if we go Shackle.And I guess just Cern if we face the archangels?
>>44281982Once they are under pact they follow orders for the most part no matter who we fight, though Gab might have issues with fighting her brothers.
>>44281997it's not just about whether they want to. I'm not exactly sure what Cern is going to do against absorb phys
>>44281905Something to worry about later, you decide, as you start to walk from the church. Without anyone needing to convince her, Gabriel falls in behind Joseph, her head lowered in a demure bow. She remains silent as you all file out of the church, Petra leaning on Elliot as you go. It's an arrangement that, you notice, Elliot looks spectacularly unhappy about – you're surprised he has the strength to keep upright.This silent procession continues for a while longer as you pick your way though the streets towards the fairy kingdom, but as the gates are starting to approach Gabriel cries out. It's hard to place the reason for that cry – not of pain or distress, but simple shock would be your best guess – but some unseen force sends her stumbling forwards.“The others!” she gasps, “Uriel, Raphael – I cannot sense them! They were... snuffed out in an instant.”What, you demand, are they dead?“I cannot say,” Gabriel shakes her head, her face ashen, “They are no longer within the Great Will's sphere of influence. It's possible that they ventured far, into some place where His light cannot shine, or...”Or...“I cannot say,” Gabriel repeats, this time with a note of prim reluctance in her voice. She straightens up and forces her composure to return, “It's too early to say anything for certain. It could be that I, not them, have been cut off. Regardless, this is not something we can control.”“God moves in mysterious ways,” Joseph says, with a certain glum cynicism.In the grim atmosphere that soon descends, all you can do is keep moving forwards, into the relative safety and familiarity of the fairy kingdom. Even within those boundaries, the uncertain feeling persists.
>>44282006Oh! Thats what you meant. Yeah no Cern for Mada though he can help fight the trash on the way.
>>44282008MASTEMA DEVOURED THEMCASSANDRA COMES
>>44282008>It could be that I, not them, have been cut off.Its them, else she would have lost contact with Michael too.
>>44282008Once you all reach the castle, your group starts to split up. Joseph – sending Gabriel into storage for the first time – heads in the general direction of the archives, while Elliot returns to the banquet hall – perhaps in search of some Pixies to scam. Petra, claiming weakness, returns to the bedrooms. You let her go, all too aware of her need for respite. That just leaves you, alone and uncertain, with the rest of the day stretching out ahead of you.What Joseph said about Cassandra has you concerned, you won't lie about that, but you know that there's only so much you can do about that now. Perhaps later, when you're back at full strength, you can explore that ramshackle insanity surrounding Elysium. Perhaps Joseph was right, though – you should take this opportunity to rest, to relax as best you can. It might be nice to visit Marco, just to talk, to reclaim what few scraps of normality you can.Or you could always see what there is to do here, within the kingdom's boundaries.>Call Cassandra and see what the situation is>Visit Marco at the Hellfire Club>See how things are going within the kingdom>Other
>>44282066>Call Cassandra and see what the situation isOn the way to>Visit Marco at the Hellfire Club
>>44282066>Visit Marco at the Hellfire ClubTHEN>Call Cassneed Marco's perspective on this whole business before more high tension talking.
>>44282079>>44282066This, warn her that Raph and Uriel might have ran to Michael though something happened to them.
>>44282101No offense to the man, but Marco's perspective on the going ons of demon world is going to very very limited.His Minotaur memories are heavily repressed and he's either been in a jail cell or tutoring Alice for the entirety of the quest.
>>44282127but he's still an older dude, he can at least help with talking to emotionally strung young adults.
>>44282024Considering I just reached the end of DDS1 this comment is particularly amusing.
>>44282174I really wish I finished that before my copy borked.DDS2 really hammers in how YOU ALL SUFFER BECAUSE YOU DIDNT PLAY THE FIRST GAME.STR-AGI-LUCK-DEVOUR build best build
>>44282066>>44282079Go with this order. I'm not sure if Marco can tell us much about Cass.
>>44282174I love Heat during those last moments.>'Get your snobby bitch ass out of the way!'>'Bring it on!'Use Gale and Cielo as your party in DDS2. They are really good, Cielo got buffed.
>>44282079>>44282106>>44282231You decide to visit Marco, bringing Mister Black the news of your recent success in the process. He'll be pleased, you don't doubt, to see the Inferno Idol doing its job in keeping the wasteland warm and full of life. Even without that motivating factor, it would be nice to see Marco again. On the way, though, you could always see if Cassandra is answering her phone. With recent events being what they are, she deserves a warning – Raphael and Uriel, wounded as they are, are still highly dangerous.As you're leaving the kingdom, you dial her number and listen to the mournful sound of ringing, the moment drawing out longer and longer as she does not answer. Just as you're about to give up hope, the call connects.“Hello?” Cassandra – her voice strained and brittle – says, “Mia?”That's right, you answer, wincing at how foolish you sound. How is she?“Tired,” she says simply, “I wasn't expecting to hear from you so soon. Are you checking up on me, or was there something you wanted?”Is that a note of hostility, you wonder, that you can hear in her voice? It's hard to tell – she sounds so weary, and maybe even pained, that you can barely read anything in her voice. She could be suffering from a sleepless night, or a long and difficult fight. Perhaps that neutrality is deliberate, so she only reveals what she wants to reveal.“Mia?” Cassandra repeats, a note of concern slipping – accidentally? - into her voice.>Your Archangels almost got Petra killed>You should be careful. Raphael and Uriel might be looking for you>I just wondered how you were doing>Other
>>44282352>>You should be careful. Raphael and Uriel might be looking for you>>I just wondered how you were doingWe busted Joseph out from their clutches and the ran. I'm sure you've heard Michael blasting about too.
>>44282352>I just wondered how you were doingBut also>You should be careful. Raphael and Uriel might be looking for you"They might have retreated to Michael, though something may have happened to them on the way. I'm not sure.">Other"Also since you two are friends I felt you should know that Petra got really hurt fighting those two. She's okay and resting back at the kingdom though, we'll keep her safe. So you gotta be doubly careful out there since we can't watch your back okay?"
>>44282352>I just wondered how you were doing>You should be careful. Raphael and Uriel might be looking for you>Your Archangels almost got Petra killedIn that order of decreasing priority.
I think it might be time to get some guns soon. We need a ranged alternative to personally fighting.
>>44282352>>Other"I know you have your mission, but don't kill yourself trying to accomplish it. You aren't alone, you can come back to the kingdom if you need to put your feet up."
>>44282368>>44282419>>44282441>>44282536You were just wondering how she was doing, you begin in a casual tone, you're not checking up on her. Not in the way she meant, at least.“Really,” Cassandra sounds amused, somehow, “I'm surviving. That's about the best thing you can say in a world like this, wouldn't you say? No, don't worry about that – now tell me why you really called.”She's good, you'll give her that. Sighing, you give her the warning you had been preparing. Uriel and Raphael might be out there, looking for her. Even if they're not, they might be heading to where Michael is, to regroup and recover – though, you can't be sure about that. Something, and you don't know what, might have happened to them along the way. In either case, the Archangels are pretty furious – you broke Joseph out of their clutches, and Michael has been shaking things up.“I noticed,” Cassandra's voice turns dry, “He almost burned me alive, out there. I only just escaped in one piece.”You freeze at that, unsure of what to make of it. So Cassandra is definitely working against the Archangels – who, then, is she working with? Swallowing your questions, you mention Petra. Cassandra isn't the only one to suffer a serious injury – Petra almost died because of Raphael. She's okay now, resting back at the fairy kingdom, but it was pretty rough for a moment. So, you finish, Cassandra should be doubly careful out there – you're not around to watch her back, after all. She's always welcome back at the kingdom, any time.“Petra...” Cassandra's voice falters for a moment, “Look after her, won't you? I... I should go.” Then the line dies, before you can even think about replying. Taking the phone from your ear, you stare at it for a moment before dropping it back into your pocket.
>>44282606Still mulling over the brief, not entirely comfortable conversation, you make your way through the empty streets towards the Hellfire Club. As you walk you notice that the lights above, burning at the top of the skyscrapers you pass, are strong and bright – a reassuring thing to see, in a world like this. It even feels a little warmer, the wind that whistles between hollowed out buildings less bitter or chilling. Slowly, Winter is releasing its grip on this world.Perhaps that new warmth is the reason that the Hellfire Club is less busy than before, with many of the tables empty and the air far more palatable. Mister Black is sitting in one of the booths, his attention focussed on a plain legal pad. Every so often, he takes a pencil from behind his ear and writes something down, crossing off something else not long after. If he is bothered by the relative lack of business, he doesn't seem to show it. If anything, he seems to relish the peace and quiet. Behind the bar, the bartender nods at you – the gesture like the first moments of an avalanche.“On your own, today?” Mister Black asks, without looking up. His voice carries beautifully, reaching you above the background hum of hushed voices, even though it never seems to rise above a discrete whisper. Crossing the room, you sit down opposite him.“I hear you've been busy,” he says casually, “Word has already spread about your little challenge. Not many expected a few humans to put two Archangels to flight.”>I'm just here to see Marco. Is he free?>I delivered the Inferno Idol. It's burning brightly>What else have you heard about the Archangels?>Other
>>44282688>What else have you heard about the Archangels?Since we are on the topic, then>I delivered the Inferno Idol. It's burning brightlyThen>I'm just here to see Marco. Is he free?
>>44282688>>What else have you heard about the Archangels?Wouldn't we need to trade something for the intel? This is a business after all
>>44282781He might give us a freebie. Can't hurt to ask.
>>44282781We could tell him that Gabriel herself can't sense those two anymore. That's gotta be news
>>44282708>>44282771>>44282781So, you ask, has he heard anything else about those Archangels? Anything about what happened to them after they fled, perhaps?“Hmm,” Mister Black taps his pencil on the legal pad, “Have we heard anything else about that? I suppose if anything DID happen, we'd be the ones to know about it – after all, knowing things is our business.” He stresses that last word - “business” - in a not very subtle way.You get the point. Nodding softly, you decide to come back to that later, once your other business is done here. For now, you mention that the Inferno Idol seems to be doing its job quite nicely – burning bright and strong. You should know, since you were the one to deliver it.“Yes, I had noticed,” Mister Black sounds pleased, “As soon as the thaw started, the crowds couldn't leave quick enough. I'd almost feel insulted, if I wasn't so happy to have this place back under some semblance of order. As was our deal, your father is free to leave whenever he likes, or he may remain as a guest – also for as long as he likes. Would you care to see him?”That would be lovely, you reply, if he's free?“You came at the perfect time,” the tall gentleman says, glancing down at his elegant silver watch for a second, “Follow me, please.” Standing, pausing only to smooth some invisible creases out of his black funeral suit, the slender demon leads you through the same door as last time, out into that impossible corridor. You can't be certain, but you're fairly sure that the directions he leads you down are different to the last time you came here – but then, you can hardly remember the exact route you took that time. A few more instantly forgotten twists and turns, and then you arrive at a pair of doors. Knocking lightly at one, your escort then retreats a few paces.
>>44282974Entering the room, you see that it's a kind of bedroom – living chambers, for any “guests” that the Hellfire Club might be entertaining. Surprisingly cosy, but it might be the stacks of books dotted about that gives you that impression. Books always did that for you, conveying the idea of “home”. You lean down to examine the first tome to catch your eye, and...Huh. How would you even pronounce that?“I wondered that myself,” Marco says, his voice coming from behind you. His hand, a warm and reassuring weight, falls upon your shoulder. “Hello Mia, come to visit me, have you?”That's right, you tell him, turning away from the book – it could only be properly described as an “eldritch tome”, a phrase you never expected to use in real life – and allowing yourself to be pulled into a tight hug. It's a moment you savour, allowing the human contact to wash away your recent traumas. When Marco pulls away from you, his eyes are bright and satisfied – he missed you, of course, as much as you missed him. Stepping away, he leads you over to a rather plain armchair, sitting opposite you in a matching copy.“So,” he says, regarding you with a certain mixture of pride and worry, “How are things out there? I hope everything is going well.”Not exactly WELL, but...>Tell him about recent events. Omit the worst parts>Give him an honest account of recent events>Avoid the issue, ask about the strange books instead>Other
>>44283060>>Give him an honest account of recent events"On the bright side, everyone is accounted for now as long as I keep in contact with Cass."
>>44283060>Give him an honest account of recent eventsSince he doesn't remember being Minotaur much, he needs to know how rough it can get out there. Elliot just got a wake up call after all.
>>44283060>>Give him an honest account of recent eventsThen later>Ask about the strange books
>>44283177>>44283142>>44283107You won't lie, you tell Marco, things got pretty rough out there. Your group has shattered – although, on the bright side, you've managed to gather most of the members back together with surprising speed – and things seem more dangerous than ever. Two of your friends are recovering from some pretty serious injuries and another is away, doing mysterious things to further her own agenda. You did manage to rescue Joseph, though, and he seems to be doing okay.“Hmm,” Marco pauses, leaning forwards, “That wouldn't happen to be a scar, would it?”Uh...“Because it looks very much like a scar,” apparently satisfied – or dissatisfied, perhaps – Marco leans back, “I worry about you, Mia. I know, you've got friends and, ahem, other entities that can look out for you, but you're still putting yourself in harms way. I know you won't stop – really, I don't think that's an option any more – but I do wish you'd be more careful.”In your normal life, you would have responded to this with rare sarcasm – the archetypical sigh of “Yes DAD” that seems to happen so often in the movies – but this time you nod humbly. He's right, after all, and you can't really argue any other way. After appearing suitably chastised for a few moments, you look up and hastily ask about those stacks of strange books. Not his usual kind of reading material – not a single scientific journal in sight.“Actually, I think these might be the closest thing this world has to a scientific journal,” Marco sighs, “All magic and mysticism, but there seems to be something approaching logic there. I was given these by my “host”, and told that they will be useful later. Something to do with a VIP, I believe, like the next room over.”Could he be talking about Amelia? Is Mister Black involved in all this?
>>44283353It's Undine isn't it?
>>44283353As you are musing on that last point, there is a delicate knock at the door and Mister Black – the man himself – opens it a moment later. “Pardon the intrusion,” he says softly, “But the time...”“Ah,” Marco nods, a smile of regret flickering around his lips, “Duty calls, I'm afraid. I think we're moving onto English grammar today – God help me.”As Marco stands, you hug him tightly, murmuring your best wishes and words of encouragement into his chest. Then, pulling away, you let him leave quickly. This precious time, you realise, never seems to last much longer than a few minutes at most. In a way, you can't help but feel something approaching jealousy towards Alice – she seems to see more of your father than you do. It won't last forever, though, and you console yourself with that.“Now,” Mister Black begins, flexing his long and skeletal fingers slowly, “Do we have any business to attend to?”>What's this about a VIP next door?>I hear Gabriel has lost contact with Raphael and Uriel. That's worth something, isn't it?>Do you have any work that needs doing?>Other
>>44283436>>What's this about a VIP next door?>>I hear Gabriel has lost contact with Raphael and Uriel. That's worth something, isn't it?>>Do you have any work that needs doing?Honestly all three.
>>44283436>What's this about a VIP next door?Undine or Nyarly are by best guesses.>I hear Gabriel has lost contact with Raphael and Uriel. That's worth something, isn't it?>Do you have any work that needs doingGood to have options
>>44283436>>What's this about a VIP next door?>>I hear Gabriel has lost contact with Raphael and Uriel. That's worth something, isn't it?We're pretty busy already
>>44283535As long as we don't promise anything or there is no time limit it can't hurt to have an option to get a favor from Hellfire.
>>44283457>>44283517>>44283535So, you ask, what's this about a VIP next door? Marco mentioned something about it, and it's sort of got your curiosity going.“There's nobody next door,” Mister Black tells you, his brow raised in mild surprise, “Yet. The room is merely prepared for when there WILL be someone in residence. I believe that will be in...” pausing here, he checks the same watch from before, “In four days, by my count. The night of the full moon. I imagine the significance of that will not be lost on you.”No, it is not. Interesting – so Amelia has, somehow, managed to arrange some kind of neutral ground for her appearance. You're not exactly sure how, or why Mister Black is willing to go to the trouble, but it's still pretty good news. Filing that information away for later, you casually mention that Gabriel has lost all contact with two of her fellow Archangels – maybe even the same pair that were so recently beaten! That kind of information must be worth something, right?“Perhaps,” Mister Black looks pleased, “Ah, but I wonder what could cause her to lose contact like that...”Well, you were wondering that as well. That's kind of why you asked.“Patience, child,” Mister Black chides you, “Angels that fell from God's good graces became devils, cut off from all contact with their former allies – and yet Hell is silent. Normally, there would be great cheers if two angels of such high status were to fall. Which means, perhaps, that they have fallen in with some other power. Of course, without any other information to go on, I couldn't offer any suggestion of who that might be...”You might have an idea, a wild piece of speculation, about that – but the conclusion is nothing good. Not even slightly. Swallowing hard, you move quickly on and ask if Mister Black has any odd jobs he needs doing. Focus on other things – better things.
>>44283702They fell in with Nyarly. I was afraid that might happen. Things just got a bit worse.
>>44283702“I wouldn't call it a job, as such,” Mister Black muses, after a moment of thought, “But there is a certain book I've been wanting to acquire – a rare book, as I'm sure you could guess. Not the kind of thing that can be found anywhere. It is of little interest to you, I'm sure – a history of occult tradition in certain communities – but the rarity is, in itself, valuable.”Sounds like a fairly standard sanity blasting tome, you remark.“I'd hardly call it...” the gentleman sighs, “I cannot tell you where to find it, unfortunately, but the best place to look would be among cults themselves. If a major archive had a copy – such as the archive with in the lands of the Fae – I would have heard about it by now. Minor groups are your best option. The name of the book would mean little, but it has quite a distinctive cover – thin brass, stamped with the sign of two snakes. Find it for me, and I would see you rewarded.”Cultists, huh? Nodding slowly, you assure Mister Black that you'll keep an eye out for such a book. Brass, with two snakes – should be easy to recognise. You might even have a few ideas of where to start looking – although the thought of that dense warren, cast in Elysium's shadow, does not fill you with confidence.“Very good,” Mister Black claps his hands together with apparent and dignified glee, “Then, do we have any further business?”>A few questions, nothing more (Write in)>No business. Return to the fairy kingdom>No business. Go elsewhere (Write in)
>>44283820>No business. Return to the fairy kingdom
>>44283820>No business. Return to the fairy kingdomKinda want to get guns, but that should probably be a group decision.
>>44283820>>No business. Return to the fairy kingdomMight as well see how everyone is holding up
>>44283820>thin brass, stamped with the sign of two snakesThe fucking Auryn?
>>44283940Maybe he wants the Neverending Story for Alice.Or maybe we'll be seeing Ouroboros soon.>SJ flashbacks intensify.
>>44283926>>44283923>>44283842No, you shake your head, no further business. You'll be back later – with this mysterious book, perhaps.“It would be a pleasure,” Mister Black replies, keeping it vague as to whether he's talking about you or the book, “You're always welcome here, of course - provided you pay your bills and stay honest.”Well, you don't think that should be a problem. With that passing comment, you allow Mister Black to lead you back to the main section of the club. Once again, the route back seems to be far shorter than earlier – not that you're complaining – and you're leaving the club before you can think twice about it. As you're walking out into the snowy streets, the directions already flee from your mind. Strange magic, in these places.You consider your situation as you walk, daring to consider the possibility of two Archangels falling into Nyarlathotep's service. Could be grant them even greater power than before, above and beyond that which the Great Will took from them? The idea scarcely seems possible...Grimacing at the thought, you surface from your thoughts to find yourself, once more, within the fairy kingdom. When you return to the palace, you're surprised to see Petra up and about already, sitting on a flight of broken stairs. Her damaged hand is held in a sling, while a patch of black silk covers her missing eye. She stands as you approach, as if boasting about how quickly she has recovered.“Bed rest,” she says, like someone uttering a curse, “No good, yes? How do I look?”>Very dashing!>Well, it covers the holes at least>Never mind that, we've got bigger problems>Other
>>44284182>>Well, it covers the holes at least
>>44284182>Very dashing!But>We got some big problems. You know, the usual.
>>44284182>>Well, it covers the holes at leastNyalarhotep miiiiiiight have gotten his hands on Uriel and Raphael, in the he's their boss sense
>>44284182>>Well, it covers the holes at leastTime to bully a slav!
>>44284182"We need to get you a proper eye patch, pirate style. Maybe Scathach can cook up a magic one. But seriously how are you doing?"
>>44284292>>44284333>>44284259>>44284233>>44284243Well, you remark, is covers the holes at least.“Gah!” Petra reels back, her remaining eye growing wide with mock horror, “So cold!”But seriously, enough about that. You clear your throat, adopting a voice of appropriate seriousness. You've got bigger problems, right now, than deciding what outfit goes best with an eyepatch. The usual kind of troubles, true, but troubles nonetheless – Nyarlathotep might have possibly, maybe got his teeth into Uriel and Raphael. If Gabriel still can't sense them, it might be because they've got a new boss – one that might be a little more generous with his blessings.“Ah,” Petra says simply, a frown passing across her face. The thought of the Archangels, with their strength bolstered, hits her as hard as it hit you. “We should be careful, yes? Avoid their territory in future – no trouble, now that Joseph is out of there.”Sure. No reason at all the head East. None at all. Perhaps Mister Black will have to wait to get his hands on that book he was looking for. Biting your lip for a moment as you think, you decide to move onto safer ground – how is Petra doing, anyway?“Well!” Petra announces, “The sling is just for show, and to keep Joseph from playing doctor. I can fight as well as ever!”You wonder about that. She seems like the type to cover up an injury, even at their own risk.>I'm going to have to end things here for tonight. Next thread on Tuesday – the last one, before a brief break over the holidays – and I'll stay to answer any questions!
>>44284488Thanks for the run Moloch.Do Uriel and Raph have tentacles coming out of them now?
>>44284534Nothing quite so undignified, but they have had a makeover!
>>44284560So did Gabby just come with us no strings attached or is she banking on Amelia restoring her?Or is Joseph just that smooth?
>>44284560The most sinister alliance possible: the SMTIV guest artists.
>>44284640Mother of God! aka LydiaAt least we got Minotaur out of it.
>>44284638Well, she's basically weighed up her options and decided that Amelia might be her best bet at restoration. Plus she knows what humans are capable of, after the previous cycle!>>44284640I kinda like that art style
>>44284686When did they lose contact with YHVH? Right before Nyarly started his game?
>>44284715That was the point at which contact was severed completely, but the Great Will had been growing more and more distant, since the start of the entire cycle. That's why the Archangels are kind of a mess - their old orders are hardly appropriate, given the circumstances, but they can't get any new ones. They're making it up as they go along!
>>44284782It was Nyarly wasn't it. I could see him getting a kick out of driving the Law forces into desperation cause Daddy isn't calling. That and wanting to see what would happen. Law is all kinds of fucked up. Is Lucy at least keeping his house together?
>>44284560>SMTIV'dWell, that's nothing short of troubling.>>44284686I kind of liked it too
>>44284820>Is Lucy at least keeping his house together?Not even slightly. Most of his top men have either joined The Shackle or tried to go it alone. Long term, they will probably come back and take their old places, but things certainly aren't very rosy in Hell at the moment!
>>44284886With such a destabilization of powers this might be the best time to organize that Neutral force I mentioned last thread. Couldnt hurt to run it by Titania sometime.
>>44284944Or we could get as much power as possible and rule the world. Nyarly would probably find that amusing though.
>>44284944>>44285017Both options are possible, depending on how much time you're willing to invest in diplomacy or world domination!
>>44285017I'm talking much more long term and not necessarily for us. Right now with how much shit is going on and how Law and Chaos are practically broken, the demon world is in its own World of Transition. The status quo is destroyed and its chaos. From this though we can help bring the rise of a new community that together can put the boot to Law, Chaos, or assholes like the Shackle that can last throughout the cycles.
>>44285081So is Michael pissed that his brothers and sister all just went turncoat while he was out digging in the snow?
>>44285172He's pretty pissed about Gabriel, but he doesn't know exactly what happened to Raphael or Uriel - in the same way that Gabriel didn't know what happened to them. I can't imagine he'd approve of their decision though!
Updated>>Main Goal>Recover Cosmic Fragments-Center fragment acquired by Scathach, hasn't done anything yet.-North fragment captured by Mada and the Shackle. Fortress had transformed.-South fragment captured and used to make some town on the southern outskirts of the city-West fragment claimed - Assist the Fairy Expedition.-East fragment unaccounted for. Michael and Cassandra are both looking for it.>Priority Missions-Make sure Petra recovers before she goes out to fight again.-Keep in contact with Cass.>Other missions-Find Mister Black's book in the East - (Dangerous, Michael and possibly Raph and Uriel are out there)-Kill the tunneling demon-Meet up with Amelia at the next full moon.-Hit up Moloch for our reward if we want to. (Possibly dangerous, Lucy is an asshole, etc.)-Acquire guns (or other ranged weapons)>Current SituationTaking a breather.