Previous Thread: >>3789176Archived Threads: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Magical%20Contractor%20Questhttps://pastebin.com/u/JuubeyQM (For character sheets and what not. If anyone would like a short summery of the quest so far, I could put one in there. Just let me know with the upcoming votes.)I'm a very slow writer, so please bear with me. I try to update when I can.------------"Of course Angels get angry from time to time. We can feel that way and we sometimes do." Your right paw takes to scratching at the back of your head out of reflex as you attempt to think of some other direction where to take this conversation. You have an idea. Maybe, you ease Alice's distaste for combat with the right motivation."...You know, the same thing is true of God. Alice, I know you can recall many stories involving God's anger in the Bible. The wicked would often do something horrible to draw His ire, and they would earn their just reward for doing so. In simpler terms, God gets mad at bad guys too. That's why you're called to fight them as his mortal arbiter. It is up to you to set their wrongs right. I want you to remember this the next time you find yourself in a fight. Hopefully, it puts your mind at ease." You look around. Alonso is nodding in agreement. Jeanette on the other hand is glaring at you. Her eyes are trying to bore a pair of holes into the back of your head. All the while, her hands are playing with her shirttail. She's wrapping her fingers in the fabric and wringing it, no doubt some indication of what she wants to do to your neck. Alice, on her part, looks bewildered. She looks down as she speaks. "It's just Father always taught me that it's not my place to get angry; it's wrong. What about when Mrs. Roberts said I must have taken her pie. You know I didn't do it, but I got punished for it anyway. I wasn't allowed to eat for two days, and because I said I didn't do it-I couldn't speak for a whole week. Not to mention all of the scrubbing—day and night. Does that make her a bad guy? If I saw her again should I punish her? Does God want me to hurt her?"Jeanette opens her mouth to say something, but you speak up first. "No, while what Mrs. Roberts did was wrong, she’s not a bad guy..." Instead she's the type that takes perverse enjoyment at making everyone as miserable as possible. Sure she's not a 'bad guy' by your usual terms--just an absolute worm of a human being You put on your best place of placid calm, but internally, you're seething at the old crone and the rest of the cult. "...She's just a senile old lady. Someday soon, God will judge her personally. You should leave that up to him, when her time comes." Thankfully, you will never see her again; otherwise you might personally ensure that outcome. It wouldn’t take much effort on your part.You dark thoughts are interrupted by Alice. “I’m still confused. It’s okay to get mad?”
“It’s not quite that simple.” You say as you drape an arm over her shoulder. “Getting angry is a natural thing. It’s part of your emotions and God made them that way on purpose. Feeling anger isn’t something that’s right or wrong—it’s all about how you choose to act on it. A lot of people let anger lead them into doing bad things to people out of selfishness. You shouldn’t do that.” Out of the corner of your eye, you notice Jeanette’s started to relax a bit with your words. “But sometimes anger can be a way your conscience talks to you, telling you to act. For example, you can get angry at seeing an unjust situation, like someone going hungry when there’s plenty of food to go around. That’s what’s called righteous anger or indignation and it’s perfectly okay to feel that way. You know all about what’s right and wrong; what’s important is making the right choices—doing good.”“I think I get it.” Alice says meeklyJeanette solemnly nods. “Alice, what Octavian said is right. However, I want you to know that sometimes fighting isn’t the right thing to do or a great way to solve certain problems. Like in the example he used, fighting wouldn’t necessarily give that man a meal. However, sharing yours would. Sometimes it’s better to talk to people, or just listen to their problems, and then, do what you can to help. You would be surprised how many situations can be solved with kind words or a hug.” She playfully runs her fingers through Alice’s hair. “I love you, baby girl…See you’re smiling. I can tell you’re feeling better.”“I am, thanks to both of you.” Alice says with a smile. “That really helped clear things up. I’ll make sure to talk with Ms. Spider later and tell her that she wasn’t acting right, but I forgive her just like Jesus does…Jeanette’s happy to see that Alice found something of value in her words. “…I’m not upset in the slightest, but I just wonder sometimes why God picked me of all people. I mean, there’s so much stuff I don’t know. I worry sometimes what would happen if I mess something up on accident because I didn’t know any better. Like, I mean, really mess up. I hope I wouldn’t go to hell.”Jeanette continues to stroke at Alice’s hair, this time in a slower and more thoughtful way. “Of course you wouldn’t, sweetheart. Everybody makes mistakes from time to time. I’ve made plenty of them myself. Just remember, Octavian and I are here for a reason. If you don’t know what to do and need help, just ask us."
“Alice, I know exactly what you mean…” You add with an uncharacteristically shaky voice. “…Angels mess up on occasion just like humans do. I made the sort of mistake you’re worried about. I didn’t exactly understand humans as well as I do now, and I missed something big. Then, I tried to make things better. However, the method I chose with my flawed understanding of matters only made things much worse. I wound up hurting someone important…Trust me, if God can keep me around after that, He’ll forgive the worst you can do.”Alice can sense your discomfort. She pulls you into her lap and into a hug. “Can I ask you about what happened or is it a big secret?”“I can tell you.” You think you now know exactly why Jeanette doesn’t like this sort of thing. Admitting your failures out loud makes them feel all the more real. You’re not going to stop, though. You already decided this is the right course of action. Alice and Jeanette should both know about this. You sigh and begin again. “This happened a long time ago. This was before you were born, Alice. Jenny would have been a little girl at the time, much younger than you. I was watching over another girl who had a mission much like yours. Her name was Jessica. She was a very good person, a good friend, a good daughter, a good sibling…” With each thing you add, you feel a sharp pain in your chest like the stab of a knife. “…And a good magical girl. She was patient, kind, loving, and always there for anyone who needed her. She would always rush in to help--no matter how frightened she really was…” You’re hiding your face in your paws. If you could, you would be crying now. “…When she needed me the most, I didn’t help her because I didn’t know how. She got close to someone. Someone she thought she could trust and love. He was much older than her and in a position of power over her. He wound up taking advantage of her. She thought the relationship was more than it really was until he threw her away. She confronted him about it and he wound up hurting her even worse…”You don’t know how much of this Alice can really follow, but Jeanette can surly put together the pieces. You lose your train of thought when you feel something slightly damp on the top of your head. Alice planted a light kiss right between your ears, before speaking softly. “Octavian, I know it was your job to take care of her, but I don’t see how any of that was your fault.”
“I still should have warned her before she got into that mess. She was very independent, so I know she wouldn’t have listened to me.” You sit in silence for a moment. You could stop now and leave it at that, but it’s not the full picture. No, you’ll tell them. “I’m not finished yet. The night that he really hurt her, I couldn’t figure out why Jessica was so distraught. She wouldn’t tell me and we had magical girl duties to attend to--so I did something. Remember how I used my powers to speak in your mind earlier, Alice?” You look up and get the nod you’re looking for. “I can do more than that. I combed over her memories without her permission. I found out what happened, but in the process I made her relive all of it. That’s how I hurt her, in turn. Jessica used the last of her powers to run off. I couldn’t keep up with her like that. I organized the rest of the magical girls for a search, but by the time we found her it was too late. She wound up taking her own life.” Well, Titania and you showed up just in time to hear a few accusations and watch Jessica jump, but you steer clear of mentioning Alice’s mother.Alice gasps. “Why would she do that! That’s a horrible sin. Her life was a precious gift from God. I guess those things sounded bad, but how could she just throw it away?”You can hear someone inhale deeply from beside you. It’s Jeanette “Because dear, when something really bad happens to you, you can lose track of what really matters. You just wind up stewing in your own bad thoughts and memories. You get sick inside.”“But why though?” Alice asks innocently. “Bad things happen all the time. You just have to keep going.”Jeanette stands up and walks in front of Alice, lowering herself to look eye to eye with the girl before she starts explaining. “Alice dear, I don’t think you quite understand what actually happened to Jessica, and how bad it really was; I pray you never will. I wish you could stay my innocent little girl forever. All I think you need to know--is that something bad happened to her, and it’s one of the worst things that can happen to a girl. When something that bad happens, it’s not very easy to move forward at all. You get stuck. Your feelings aren’t the same anymore. Everything seems to hurt and you’re sad all the time. Nothing seems like it helps. Like I said before, you get sick. To make matters worse, some people just get sick like that without anything that bad happening. You’re brain’s just messed up. It’s not a very nice way to live. Eventually the only thing you want to do is escape...and that’s how you get to Jessica’s choice.”
“Jenny” You can sense the distress in Alice’s voice and from how tight she’s clutching you. “Why do you know so much about this? When you said you were sick earlier…is this what you were talking about?” You can feel the tears hit your fur before you can hear her crying. “Please Jenny, don’t do it. Don’t leave me. You’re my mom now. I don’t want you to go.”You get sandwiched in between the two women as Jeanette goes in for a hug. “Alice, I’m not going to lie. I’m still sick and I’ve come very close to doing something like Jessica did, so very close, but I’ve got you now, so I can’t just leave yet…So, you don’t need to cry anymore.”“But Jenny, it’s not right. You’re a nice person. You shouldn’t be the one to hurt. What can I do to help?” Alice makes out between sniffles.“Shhh…I already told you. Just tell me how much you care about me. Love me. Stay close to me and don’t let me go. Understand that I have good days and bad days. I might seem mean or angry on the bad ones, or I might not want to even get out of bed. Don’t hold it against me, because that’s when I need you the most. That’s when I really need know how much you care. Sometimes I’ll get nervous, really worked up about stupid stuff, or blow trivial things out of proportions. You’re going to have to be patient with me. I’m not going to be as energetic as some mommies are, especially on the bad days, but I’m always trying my best for you, Alice.”“I try to do my best for you too, Jenny. I’m glad you’re not planning on leaving me.” Alice shifts her attention back to you. “Octavian, what happened to Jessica, afterwards. Did she go to Hell?”“Not at all dear, God forgave her. He couldn’t damn a girl like that. She’s in Heaven now.”Alice whispers into your ear. “Great, because after I’m gone, I hope I can meet her some day.”You can feel your sprits lift a bit. “Me too, I would like to see her again someday. I still want her forgiveness…but until then, I have more stories of her--happier ones. Would you like to hear them some time?” You already know the girl’s answer.-------------------------------
Do you want to share more stories of your past girls?>Yes, which one:>Talk about poor little Ellen. She was your first girl and your inexperience hurt her in so many ways. But she never stopped trying. She may have died alone, and the people she saved never appreciated her deeds, but you know she was a real hero.>Maybe you could lighten the mood a bit with some tales about Matilda. Your little aristocrat liked to tease you so much, almost as much as she liked her cannons. Looking back on it you would have had a lot of fun with her if you were like how you are now. She could have been your first friend before Alice or Jeanette.>You might have to be vague to avoid slipping up, but you feel like talking about Titania. You only saw her magical potential and a grand experiment in her—the possibility of a human replicating your powers. In the end, you only pushed her too hard and too far. In the process, you ruined her life and probably ruined Alice’s. You deserved all the grief she gave you, but you didn’t deserve the gift she gave you before leaving—(your little girl).>No, you think you’re done for the night.Well, you got Alice and Jeanette to open up, but someone’s been silent the entire time. You know Alonso’s disgusted by his urges. He’s still a wendigo, even if he looks more like a human. What are you going to do?>He needs to talk. If you could do it, he has no excuse. The girls need to know about his problem. After all, if some has the ability to help him, it’s Alice.>No, you should talk to him in private later. He might be more comfortable that way.>No, but you can talk to him right now discreetly. He’s magical enough for a mental connection. That way he can’t hide anything from you.>Maybe later. You’re tiring of all this talking.
>>3827603>No, you think you’re done for the night.>He needs to talk. If you could do it, he has no excuse. The girls need to know about his problem. After all, if some has the ability to help him, it’s Alice.
>>3827603>Maybe later. You’re tiring of all this talking.
>>3827812>>3827817>>3827869>>3828825>>3828891>Closing the vote and writing.
>>3827585>no public pastes
>>3832121Yeah, thought that was weird too. Juubey probably privated them on accident or something.
>>3832121>>3832656Looks like I did screw something up. There should have been a summery of the events so far in there. I'll mess around with it in a little bit. I want to get the update out first.
>>3834505That's fine, QM.
Of course, Alice wanted to hear some of those stories immediately. So, you just sunk back into her lap and started talking. At first, you tried to recall stories that might be useful for the girls--like times from Jessica's experiences as a magical girl, but eventually you just started sharing little things about her: The way she laughed and what made her do so, what games she like to play with her friends, even minor things like her favorite color. In the end, you think you left your audience with a pretty complete sketch of the girl. Maybe a little piece of her could live on in them as much as she does in you.Judging by how much the fire has dimmed, some time has passed since you since you started reminiscing about Jessica. It seems like the night is something of a success. With her earlier concerns forgotten, Alice is all smiles and happiness--back to her normal self. After all, to Alice there was no finality in Jessica's passing. The red head was still out there somewhere and one day you would all be reunited. Jeanette, lounging in her chair, seems (for lack of a better term) calmer. You're not sure how much she was actually paying attention, but seemed relax watching Alice. This exercise has even done some good for you. You feel like a burden's been lifted off of your soul. While you had your doubts about Alice's convictions, maybe she had a point. You didn't have much knowledge of what happens to a soul after death, beyond the fact that you could not call one back to life, and of things like hauntings--where a distraught soul binds to a place or object. Maybe Jessica was still around in some happier place (and hopefully she's not haunting you. Well, she didn't seem like the type to do that.).However, one person has been conspicuously silent for most of the night. Alonso has barely said a word. Sure he's been keeping watch, but how much of that was just a pretence on his part. So, you're going to help him. "I think someone else has something to share..." Your voice breaks the silence. "...Alonso, you should speak up about what you felt tonight. I can only do so much for you, but your lady has already made some progress in breaking your curse. She should know."He clearly balks at your words, but with some hesitation begins to speak. "I would not want to trouble my liege with the problems of her servant, nor is it a topic fitting for a noble girl, but you make a point angel. During the battle, I felt a strange hunger. Actually, I've been feeling it since I've been awake. I don't know what I can do to contain it. By God, I wanted to eat those things for some reason. This must be some lingering part of the curse that claimed me..." He falls to his knees in a groveling posture. "Please take some pity on your servant."
Alice immediately sets you aside and runs over to the man. "Of course I'll do that, Alonso." After helping the man back to his feet, she turns her attention back to you. "Octavian, how can I help him? I don't know what to do.""I'm not sure dear, but between Jenny, you, and me I'm sure we can come up with something." You get another idea--Maybe the Durands might know something. They seem to be quite knowledgeable on the subject of wendigos, but they--really just Jonathan--might not be the most willing to help Alonso, considering his ethnic background and previous occupation. Alternatively, you could try more of Alice's magic first thing in the morning. You already know the girl is worn out from today's occurrences. What should you do?>Go with Alice and Jeanette to talk with the Durands about Alonso. They seem to be experts on this type of thing, although there's no telling what Alice's magic has done. Should you bring Alonso along (Y/N)>Alice and Jeanette did see interested in those Native American relics. You could take a look at those and then ask Sam alone about Alonso.>Send Alice off to get ready for bed. That way The Durands, Jeanette, and you can discuss Alonso along with Alice, and the ritual tomorrow undisturbed.>Maybe this is something you should discuss with the Durands yourself. You can bring up Alice's ritual too. There is also the matter of the deal you struck up with Jonathan. You might want to find out what he wants.>Some other approach: Write in>*You can deal with all of this later, probably in the morning. Then what do you want to do now? If chosen select one of the options below*.>Spend some time with the girls. What do you want to do? More school work with Alice, Help Alice mend her sweater, Play a game, or Write in.>You might make a halfway decent leader, but still feel like you're dead weight if something happens to the girls in combat. You should practice with your powers for the first time in decades.>You could have Alice and Jeanette distract the Durands while you snoop through Jonathan's papers. You're curious what he's researching.>Write in/something else/some combination of responses.
My apologies for this being so short and the delay. I've couldn't really come up with a way to make this conversation that impactful. After wracking my brains for a couple of days, I just decided to move past it.
>>3837617>Send Alice off to get ready for bed. That way The Durands, Jeanette, and you can discuss Alonso along with Alice, and the ritual tomorrow undisturbed.
>>3837617>Send Alice off to get ready for bed. That way The Durands, Jeanette, and you can discuss Alonso along with Alice, and the ritual tomorrow undisturbed.>Spend some time with the girls. What do you want to do? More school work with Alice, Help Alice mend her sweater, Play a game, or Write in.
>>3837780>>3838907>>3839887I'm up pretty early, so I'm closing the vote here.>Go ahead and roll 1d20 best of 3. I can use it for this option or the next depending on which comes first.>>3839887I know I've been doing double votes a lot, but you didn't need the second option. That was only if you decided not talk to the Durands, but I will keep it in mind for later.
Rolled 1 (1d20)>>3840448woops
Rolled 6 (1d20)>>3840209
>>3840451>>3840453This is a research roll either way so you can't crit fail here.I'm off today, but I have a couple of errands to run. I've gotten to the part the roll is for. I'll get right back to writing once I come home.>In the meantime, I need one more roll.
Rolled 3 (1d20)>>3840209
>>3840451>>3840453>>3840511>6. It'll be a little while longer. I still have a bit more to type up but my hands are starting to cramp up. I need to get up from the computer for a while.
It's worth talking to the Durands. They are experts on this type of stuff. You have more business to discuss with them anyway. But, what to tell Alice? Concern is plain as day on her face. She clearly wants to do something now. She's just waiting for you to spout off some divine decree on a course of action--something you don't really have right now. You decide to speak to the knight instead. "Alonso, do you think you can hold out till tomorrow morning? Alice might have more success with her magic after some rest. That should give me more time to ponder things over as well.""It feels terrible, but as long as I don't find myself fighting anything else, I think I can manage." He says as he shifts the weight of his torso off of Alice's back. "Do not fret your Majesty. I'll take your word for it and that of your angelic advisor. I'm just glad you found it in your heart not to dismiss me or report my condition to the inquisition."Good that should mollify Alice for now. You gesture to the empty chair. "How about you take a seat for a little while? I can check up on you later. Alice dear, it's getting late. You should take a little while to wash up. I can smell bits of monster in your hair. After that, you should go to bed.Alice tips her head forward sending her hair cascading over her face."Ew gross. I think can smell it too..." She tosses her hair back and looks back to you. "Thanks, Octavian." Alice takes her leave from your little group, hurrying inside to hop in the shower. You wait for Alice to be out of earshot before you tug on Jeanette's pant leg. That gets her attention. "Wait a couple of minutes with me. Then, follow me inside. We have a couple of things to talk over with the Durands." The woman just raises an eyebrow at what you said.You count down the seconds in your head. In the meantime, Alonso settles into Alice's vacated chair and allows himself to visibly relax. Once you reach the second sixty, you stand up and start walking to the porch. Thankfully, Jeanette follows you. You wait for her to open the door and then you both step inside. You can hear the sound of running water muffled under the sounds of the television blaring away. You can see that Jonathan's mess is gone. A pair of native costumes and what looks like two masks has replaced the papers on the table in the little nook. Not only do they look old, they smell old--a particular sort of musty that comes from old leather. You would further indulge your curiosity but you hear Jeanette's voice behind you. "Is all the secrecy really necessary?"
You turn back to her as she's closing the door behind herself. "I'm afraid it is. Alonso's not the only thing on my mind. Alice might come up as one of the topics of conversation. She's your responsibility too, so I figured I should keep you in the loop...Someone cursed Alice. If I had to hazard a guess, this has something to do with her “family’s” religious beliefs. In my haste, I must have missed it when I contracted her. It must be something subtle, as well. She didn’t demonstrate any obvious physical or psychological symptoms, just great difficulty using her magic at first. She reacted to her own magic like it was something completely alien to her--I chalked that up to inexperience. Then, we bumped in to Jonathan and he was able to see the problem directly. After seeing some type of corruption on her soul, he made her out to be some kind of witch. We almost came to blows before I cleared up the misunderstanding. After that, I commissioned the Durands to perform an exorcism on Alice. That’s what’s actually happening tomorrow and is the sole reason we’ve been staying here. Furthermore, I loaned out our services in lieu of payment. I think you can tell why I don’t want Alice to know any of this.”“Octavian, I hate keeping Alice in the dark like this, but I understand your logic. I can’t imagine what I would do if someone told me my entire life and everything I ever believed in was all part of some elaborate lie. However, we’re only making things worse if we keep lying to her in return. Someday, she’s going to find something out-she’s a smart enough girl. What will happen if she decides she can’t trust us? She might go right back to the cult…”You sigh before Jeanette finishes her thought. “Jen, I don’t even want to think about that. My first priority is to get her far away from here, as fast as possible. Let’s try to give the girl a better life. Then, we can start talking about what to tell her.” You tap your foot on the ground impatiently. “She’s only going to be in the shower for so long. I want to get this over with.”
“Right” she says before picking you up and carrying you out of the kitchen toward the sound of the television in the living room. Sure enough, the Durands are right there surrounded by assorted boxes and crates. Sam is sitting on the sofa, glancing down from the news, weaving some of the red silk into a circular, wooden frame. It looks a lot like a dream-catcher. He must be taking a brake as there are little bottles, brushes, and towels strewn about on the coffee table. Jonathan is sitting in the recliner off to the side, painstakingly looking over a peculiar drum; occasionally tapping the instrument with his finger to test its tune. He seems satisfied with what he heard, as he set it down on top of an over turned crate and takes a sip from a bottle of beer that was previously sitting on the floor. He’s the first one to notice the two of you. “Came in to socialize, or just calling it day?” You can tell he’s tired from the tone of his voice, but it lacks his usual sarcasm.“I thought we could talk. Jen and I had a few questions.” Jeanette adds: “I hope we aren’t bothering the two of you” as soon as you finish your sentence.“Go ahead. I was waiting for an excuse to take a break.”Jonathan certainly seems more easy-going than usual. He holds up his bottle and gives it a little shake. “Want one?” He says, probably talking more to Jeanette than you.“No thanks.” She replies “I probably shouldn’t drink. Alcohol never really agreed with me.”“Yeah, I probably shouldn’t be drinking either. You probably know my people have a poor enough track record with booze.” Jon starts chuckling a bit.“You have to excuse me for asking again, but you’re Jonathan, right?” Jeanette’s offers up timidly.The young man smiles. “I thought teachers were supposed to be good with names?”“You‘d be surprised. We like to start off the year with seating charts for a reason. We have all sorts of other tricks too… Or you can just get on our nerves-I suppose you might have been that type of student?““Fair enough” Jonathan blurts out after a laugh. “Guilty as charged.” He starts rhythmically tapping his fingernails against the glass. Jeanette notices the distracting sound and starts laughing herself.Sam sets down the unfinished object on the table, and retrieves the remote control to lower the volume on the TV. He softly pats the empty seat next to him. “You should both sit down; make yourselves comfortable.” Jeanette nods and accepts the offer. You decide to stay in the woman’s lap rather than moving some of the clutter on the table or hopping up on to the armrest. It’s a more comfortable seat, anyway. You’re starting to enjoy sitting in Jeanette’s lap almost as much as Alice’s.
Jonathan stops his tapping and starts talking again. “So…I have to thank you guys. I thought all this magical girl stuff was bullshit; frankly, I still think parts of it reek of bullshit. But, you certainly know how to handle yourselves when the supernatural decides it wants to kick in your front teeth. Part of me wants to put on an air of bravado and say I could have totally walked outside and killed both those wendigos all by myself, without breaking a sweat. However, the less stupid part of me knows there’s a real chance I would have gotten shot in the back for my efforts. I owe you one. Actually, scratch one job off our deal. I had a contract to deal with that wendigo problem—a missing boy’s father put up the money once he grew wise to the spirit world. It’s more than enough to cover groceries and a couple of days’ inconvenience. You came along took out all three of them, if your Colonizer isn’t a coincidence.”“You’re welcome.” You say. “Actually, speaking of Alonso, I was wondering if you could help shed some light on something. While he certainly looks like a person, you must have noticed his eyes and teeth are a bit off. It turns out he’s still feels the same sort of cannibalistic frenzy as his more monstrous form, especially when he fights. Is there any way to fix that? Can either of you help Alice direct her magic in the morning?”Jonathan’s face turns serious for a brief moment. “You can count me out when it comes to him…But I’m not sure how much help I could provide anyway. I just drive away spirits; heeling is more Pop’s line of work.”“…Although you’re certainly welcome to watch and learn, Son.” Sam joins in. “While there are certainly stories of people being possessed by wendigo spirits in times of famine, or having their souls twisted into monstrosities by insatiable greed, I don’t know of a way to change a wendigo back into a person. I haven’t ever seen anything like your Alonso in all my years on this earth. And furthermore, I can’t quite tell what Alice’s magic has done to him exactly. I don’t mind taking a look and trying to help the girl with her efforts. Maybe, I could learn something myself. I wish I could be of more use to you here.”That’s not exactly the answer you wanted to hear, but you weren’t expecting much out of them. If you could barely keep up with peculiarities of Alice’s magic, how could a tribal shaman and a young exorcist step in? “That’s quite alright.” Jeanette adds in reassuringly. “I could learn something, as well. I wound up with healing magic too, although mine’s pretty different than Alice’s. Mine just heals minor wounds; from what I seen, Alice revives people.”
“Well that’s good to hear, young lady. You can both do a lot of good with those sort of powers…I guess that means you’re a colleague to both my daughter and me, in a sense. It’s a shame Allie couldn’t make it. I’m sure you two would have gotten along. So, Jeanette…I hope this isn’t a sore subject, asking about fighting and all, but I’m curious. I noticed you were holding your revolver oddly, when I came into the back yard. Were you having any trouble with it?”“You could say that. It kicks like a mule and it made my wrists hurt. I’m not exactly a fan of guns, so I don’t know if I was doing something wrong.”“Well judging from the number of shots I heard, you must have done something right. You’re pretty petite other than your height. You might need more practice before you get use to recoil, but a couple of those gunshots near the end sounded awfully loud. I’m assuming those were yours; what exactly where you firing out that thing anyway?”Jeanette shrugs. “Beats me, bullets--whatever my ex-husband left in it.”“I see. I think your ex-husband decided to run hot .357 out of a pocket gun on a lark. No offence, but that’s not very comfortable for a lady or new shooter.”“That sounds like something he might have done. He did go shooting often by himself, so I imagine he might have to do things like that to vary it up. Well, unless he was actually out carousing…I never really approved of either of those hobbies. Luckily, he never decided to shoot me, although, I certainly gave him enough reasons to fantasize about it.”“I don’t really know what I can say to follow that up…” Sam rubs at the back of his head as he speaks. “…But, I think I have some regular .38 special lying around from my tribal police days. I don’t my old sidearm anymore, so you can have it. If we have time tomorrow, I could coach you a bit. I have a spot set up for practice in the woods.”“Thanks, I still not really comfortable with guns, but if I have to face down more monsters, I’m certainly going to have to warm up to them. I like my chances better with a gun and a fancy stick.” You think Jeanette might transform for a moment, but she only mimes out swinging her staff like a club. Sam gets a kick out of this.”
“That’s what I keep trying to tell my grandson. He’s got quite a talent with those knives, but I owe more than a few years of my life to my twelve-gage. He should start carrying.” Jonathan, just waves his grandfather off dismissively in return. “You certainly were right about him earlier, Jeanette. Can you write him a detention for me?” Sam says jokingly.“He’s not worth my time.” Jeanette snarks back. “Actually, Sam I have a couple more gun questions.” The old man replies with a “shoot”. “Anyway, one of those wendigos dropped a gun earlier. Alice said the rear sight is broken and I think I need different bullets for it. Could you help with that or at least point me where I should go? Oh, Octavian said I might want to get a holster or something like that.”“I would have to see what you have first. My gunsmith is actually stopping by tomorrow. He could probably help you out. I just need someone’s help doing the whole texting thing.” Sam glances over to Jonathan again.“Why, Grandpa? I’ve already shown you how to use your phone a million times.” Jonathan grumbles.“Because, it’s easier when you have someone else doing it for you and I don’t ask for much else.” Sam is faking a serious tone. He can’t help letting his mirth spoil the act.You listen for the sound of running water before you decide to speak again. ”That reminds me; I never asked the specifics about tomorrow. When should I have Alice ready and what’s the plan?”Sam elects to speak for the Durands. “We won’t really get around to performing the ritual until evening, but people will start arriving in the afternoon. As far as the specifics go, to keep it simple, I’ve arranged a for dance ritual. Then, I’ll go to work with Jonathan’s help. Between all of that we should be able to drive away whatever spirit has gotten into your little girl. You shouldn’t have to do anything further, but I’ll keep you both close by just in case.”You smile.”Now I have to thank the two of you. I can’t imagine how much work you put into reconstructing this ceremony, and how much research it must have taken—all for Alice’s sake.”As soon as you finish talking Jonathan looks at you funny. Sam continues talking. “It’s no problem. The research was a labor of love on my part. I’m happy finally had an excuse to put all the pieces into place…”Jonathan cuts his grandfather off. “Pop, don’t you think we should tell about what else we found while we were researching? They deserve to know.” Sam just looks around the room clearly conflicted.“Know what?” Both you and Jeanette ask almost simultaneously. Silence falls over the room.
How should you handle this? Regardless of option selected roll 1d20+2>Keep pushing for the truth. It sounds like this is important. It might even be about Alice! (take a very active role in the conversation)>Just sit back and let the men argue. It sounds like one of the two of them will spill the beans. (take a more passive role in the conversation)>They don’t look very comfortable with this. Maybe this is something you shouldn’t bother with for now. (Ask the men hold off till later/Be very hesitant to have the conversation)>Write in/something else I know this is something of a lame choice, but this update is getting very long and I’m getting very tired.
Rolled 1 + 2 (1d20 + 2)>>3841450>Keep pushing for the truth. It sounds like this is important. It might even be about Alice! (take a very active role in the conversation)
>>3841450Don't worry. Just don't force yourself to write when it becomes a drag.
Rolled 15 + 2 (1d20 + 2)>>3841450>>Keep pushing for the truth. It sounds like this is important. It might even be about Alice! (take a very active role in the conversation)
>>3841487>>3841507>>3841782I'm leaving the update open for now. I could still use more roles for the vote.>>3841507Thanks, but I'm going to be busy on Friday afternoon and most of the day Saturday. There's no telling how much time I will have to write on Sunday too. So, I might have to force my way through the next couple of updates. I don't want to lose momentum or my own personal interest in the story. I already feel like I took too much of an unannounced break last weekend and that hurt things on both fronts.
Rolled 8 + 2 (1d20 + 2)>>3841450>Keep pushing for the truth. It sounds like this is important. It might even be about Alice! (take a very active role in the conversation)
>>3841487>>3841782>>3842197>Closing the vote here. My schedule's been busier than I thought. I'll try to get around to writing tonight.
Just a quick status report. I'm still working on the update, I just had a bunch of IRL stuff to deal with over the past few days.
My apologies for the delay. IRL stuff was actually really pressing and I wound up having to take an emergency trip out of town to deal with something for a couple of days. Anyway here's the update>1"What do you know? Is this about Alice? Is there some risk regarding Alice's condition with the ritual tomorrow?" A rapid stream of questions flows out of your mouth, but with no obvious resolution. All you get are a set of awkward glances from the men. If this is something important, you must know what it's all about. After all, you made a promise with yourself to change your ways. If Alice or Jeanette is in some type of foreseeable danger, you must account for it--take whatever precautions you can. "What is this all about?" You're not entirely familiar with the new angry tone growing with each passing word, but you can't bottle it up this time. "... Answer me DAMN IT! If you're keeping something from me about my little girl and she winds up hurt because of it, I may look like a bloody stuffed rabbit but I can rearrange your fucking organs on a whim. You or the exertion might kill me in the end but..."Sam interrupts your growing rant. "Easy Octavian, Easy. Take a breath." You don't have any biological drive to do such a thing, but the growing concern on everyone else's faces and the way Jeanette is patting your head suggest you might want to heed Sam's request."Sorry, I really don't know what came over me there. It's just...""She's important to you..."Sam answers. "Alice is your entire world now and you can't imagine what you would do if the worst happened. I understand exactly, Octavian. I'm a father too." The old man pauses for a deep breath before resuming. "Look, Alice is involved in this, but beyond the corruption you already know about, she's not in any immediate danger. I'm confident that My grandson and I can solve that problem tomorrow with no harmful side effects... Actually, I'm more concerned about the two of you." That's not what you were expecting."If this is about being a magical girl, Octavian already informed me of the risks. I don't mind." Jeanette stammers out confusedly. "It's not that." Jonathan replies with a sigh. "Jen, have you been feeling strange lately?"
"That's kind of a loaded question considering my circumstances. I was a regular woman a few days ago. I wouldn't consider calling anything that happened in the past couple of days normal. What exactly are you getting at?" The young man narrows his eyes. "Do you feel strange around Alice--Like you're drawn to her on a very deep level?""I don't understand. I want to adopt her. so of course I'm drawn to her. She's a sweet, caring, innocent girl with nowhere else to go...and she saved my life. It's the least I can offer her. Is there something wrong with that?""No, not at all. Forget all this. I didn't mean to bother either of you." Jonathan says with uncharacteristic politeness.You want to be done with this. You can feel a telltale pounding in your temples--you must be getting another headache. You hop up in Jeanette's lap. "I don't want to lose my temper again, so stop beating around the bush. Please. If Alice is caught up in something else, I need to know."Jonathan's the first to respond with another question. "Octavian, how much do you know about fae? You know fairies, the fair folk? You get the picture.""I'm actually from Scotland, so I've heard stories from contractees. But I've never encountered one; never fought one either, but it wasn't like I was looking for them. Why, what does that have to do with this?""Because when Alice and you first showed up, Jon didn't trust either of you." Sam states as a matter of fact. "He questioned my motivations and was suspicious about why I even felt like helping you. So while I was researching Alice's possible condition and what that cult might have done to her. He went off on a different tangent. I think he can explain his own actions better."
Jonathan takes another sip of beer before he tells his side of the story. "Well, Octavian, I've never seen any nature spirit like you before and Alice's abilities threw me for a loop. I really couldn't figure out how a girl could control a wendigo. I thought all of this magical girl and magical contractor stuff sounded like bullshit and I still think it is to some degree. So, I started digging. I couldn't find anything that fit in American lore, so I started looking over foreign creatures I've never encountered. I was having the hardest time coming up with anything until I decided to keep tabs on what the two of you were doing in the backyard. I saw Alice change the weeds into roses and that's when it hit me. One of the books went into a bit of detail about fae magic and it was a dead ringer for some of Alice's abilities: Being able to twist nature to suit her fancy, being able to draw objects between worlds, and to captivate some beings with their presence. That sort of posed a pressing question to me. If Alice already had control over that Alonso of hers, what's not to say she was influencing the minds of others? What if this was all just an act? My first concern was that she had gained a hold over my grandfather and was using him. So, I reported all of this to him immediately." You did overhear the two of them arguing about something on the first day you were here. That must have been it."I’m just fine. I just wanted to help a magical girl to make up for being unable to help Nancy.” The old man says with a smile that rapidly turns into a frown. “However, I fear my grandson might have just stumbled upon something. Octavian, you did say you’ve felt different since you’ve been with Alice, more like a human…more like a father. I think whether knowingly or not Alice might be exerting some sort of control over you. I can’t say for certain if the same is true for you too, Jeanette…”
You can see Sam’s mouth moving but you can hear the words. You crane your neck up to look at Jeanette talking back, but your vision is getting blurry. “Control. You allowed a mere girl to twist you to her liking. You will not be the puppet of a child. You must end this somehow…NOW.” The voice is coming from within your own mind. You can feel your head throbbing. But you enjoy Alice, you offer as a feeble response. For the first time in your life you’ve felt love, happiness, and fulfillment. You have a reason to live besides staying alive. You have feelings, you have friends—you have a real life just like the ones you’ve stolen from so many others. If all this is fake how could you just go back to what you once were? (Everything is fine. You just need your daughter.) Your head is pounding, your mind is a mess of tangled and contradictory thoughts, and everything else in your body feels off too. So this is what humans mean when they say feel ill. It feels like a hot knife is being shoved between your eyes. You lose your balance, then all of your strength…------------------------------------------------
You manage to formulate some opinion on the situation despite the pain and all of shouting you can hear in your head.>Who cares if Alice changed you? You certainly don’t. Whatever you are now it has to be an improvement over what you once were. You already made a promise—you’re not going back to your old life. Alice just helped you out and you should thank her for doing so.>You’re ambivalent about this news. You feel violated in a sense, but you can’t really hold that against Alice. She probably didn’t mean to cause any of this and, knowing her, will feel absolutely terrible if she finds out. These new emotions and feelings are still a gift, even if it was one you didn’t ask for.>Why are you getting so worked up about this? You must think more scientifically. Neither Sam, nor Jonathan offered any hard proof to back up their assertion, only a series of coincidences. Sure, you’ve never felt emotions until you’ve been with Alice and you’ve grown more sentimental once she contracted, but you shouldn’t think too hard about that. You’ll just look over their research and find the obvious error…Yeah that’s exactly what you’re going to do.>You hate this. You never asked for emotions. You never asked to feel this bond with Alice. You never asked to get involved in the affairs of humans. You never asked for your powers. You never asked to exist in the first place. But you will make of it what you will. That’s what you’ve been doing since you came into existence seventy-nine years ago and it is what you will continue to do. Finding about this will strain your relationship with Alice, but she’s got you so good you doubt you can hold it over her in the long term.>Write in/Some logical combination of responses/Something else?> KILL. KILL THE GIRL…That is the only way you can get your freedom back. She trusts you so much, so it will be easy. You can stop her heart. Just cut off the flow of blood to her brain. If you insist on not using up too much of your powers you can just put a pillow over her face in her sleep. Then, press down. It will be sooo very easy, Octavian. The other one will disapprove, but you can deal with her too. You can find new girls. Don’t be too broken up, it’s just your nature, Octavian.---------------------------------You can feel hands running through your fur...and something wet. What just happened?
>>3856556>You’re ambivalent about this news. You feel violated in a sense, but you can’t really hold that against Alice. She probably didn’t mean to cause any of this and, knowing her, will feel absolutely terrible if she finds out. These new emotions and feelings are still a gift, even if it was one you didn’t ask for.
>>3856556>You’re ambivalent about this news. You feel violated in a sense, but you can’t really hold that against Alice. She probably didn’t mean to cause any of this and, knowing her, will feel absolutely terrible if she finds out. These new emotions and feelings are still a gift, even if it was one you didn’t ask for.>May still want to do our own research into this topic just to confirm or deny this possibility.
>>3856556>Why are you getting so worked up about this? You must think more scientifically. Neither Sam, nor Jonathan offered any hard proof to back up their assertion, only a series of coincidences. Sure, you’ve never felt emotions until you’ve been with Alice and you’ve grown more sentimental once she contracted, but you shouldn’t think too hard about that. You’ll just look over their research and find the obvious error…Yeah that’s exactly what you’re going to do.
>>3856687>>3856843>>3857101>So a hint of denial, mixed with the ambivalent response, and then a genuine desire to look into the research. Would that work? If so, consider the vote closed.I have my usual Saturday commitments, but I might have some time to write in the evening.
>>3862572>>3862572>>3862572The new thread is here.