Welcome back one and all into the second part of the Witch Game, it is time to prove yourself to your ''Sun'' in a duel of honor to regain your precious Magitek gauntlet! Victory would surely endear you to Shereen. Afterward... A visit to the capital? Or perhaps you'd rather stay within the safety of the palace? Who can say, at least being stuck with a collar hasn't been overly oppressive. Yet. Below are our usual lists. Everything related to Gardy is, alas... Unavailable. Previous Threads http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Lots%20of%20DialoguesTwitter for schedule updateshttps://twitter.com/TaleOfMonstersPerks and spells for our main character https://docs.google.com/document/d/1FFJHeWTu21_OktfrfYkJQhpV5HQw4PtFKav_QoMYjQY/edit?usp=sharingCharacters met by Arawn.https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ishEn1-U1A1i3FbZ-YiQd65xk2jXpLab1XnM2hTNZvs/edit?usp=sharing
Copy pasted the wrong opening, mock me all you want
Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock.A luxurious scenery of colors inside a wide guest room with the noise of a singular grandfather clock filled you with a familiar sense of apprehension. A wall of stained glasses with uneven shadows hinted about a forest outside, the ground was a red carpet and before you was a small table filled with pricy ceramics and sweets.Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock. Tick. Tock.One glare from you at that tall clock made it stop.''My...'' The faintest of clicks followed when she put the coffee cup on a plate. ''Is it so necessary to be radiating so much hostility?''Sitting in front of you was the ever so damnably familiar Lady White, Ama-no-Uzume. Tall, curvaceous and seductive with nine long white tails hovering around her silhouette like levitating snakes with minds of their own, her dark kimono made for a tasteful contrast with the paleness of her hair, fur, and skin. Gone were the stage clothes and attitude, her attempts at small talk were met with nothing more than stark silence.Embracing her aspect or being potentially close to an area of her influence would likely explain why she's in your dreams now. Or, of course, that's what she wants you to believe. ''No need for silence, Arawn.'' She continued despite your wall treatment. She made a show of showing her cleavage by leaning forward and peeling a pice of pastries. ''You've been adapting well I hope? My game will be a long one, I didn't want to make things boring by having you to harden your heart uselessly, you'd adapt a little too well to misery.'' Her red gaze twinkled with amusement.For the briefest of seconds, your memory of the assault resurfaced. The line of Mamonos teenagers that had been watching Hao and Klesiah duel being reduced to a bloody pulp, the girls didn't have a chance. They were torn apart by a sudden charge and... ''...Hrm.'' Emotions and logic clashed; you wanted to pile all faults on this damn fox shoulders but everything happened because she allowed her followers to do as they wanted. Master and dogs are equally at fault when such evil is done. ''My, meeting your old friend again really makes for a momentous occasion.'' Ama poured the warm liquid inside her empty teacup. ''How'd your night finished? Was it wild?''How is she so damnably well informed? It's barely been a few hours for all you know. ''I'm safe and healthy if that's what you're worried about.'' ''Can that be also said for whoever came to disturb your date?'' She leaned forward once more, pulling a similar show of seduction by grabbing her teacup. ''I think you can answer that on your own.'' Irritation bubbled inside your chest, you felt the frown on your face and couldn't resist showing it. ''Suppose I shouldn't be upset by deaths now that I've become your toy.''
'Now now, I know I've described you like that... not too long ago for you hm?'' Having already finished her tea in a display that would horrify people of high society, Ama let the cup dangle on her thumb while rolling a strand of hair around the index of her second hand. ''I wouldn't bother speaking with a doll. How was it to see people die again?''''It left me cold.'' That was your honesty, plain and simple. Unlike Throne Town trainees, you couldn't give a damn about criminals. Especially potential slavers, Zhu might have instigated the whole thing but so what? Your past self might have had a bone to pick with slavers, might as well stay consistent. ''Zhu killed all six of them on her own, all I had to do was keep myself safe which... wasn't difficult. She did it without pulling her sword.'' It had been quick and savage. The small park might as well have been a field, her blindness a bluff; only the scorpion woman put up a fight but that's because of Zhu needing to snatch her enemy weapons because of her self-imposed handicap. Her dodges seemed preordained or perhaps blessed by the stalwart father for she moved with such close movements that blades and claws missed by millimeters, stealing a dagger from a beast woman waist she threw it onto another Mamono flank to acquire her machete, lopping off the wrist of a thug attempting to strike her back...Bloody, savage, raw. You've seen strong warriors. Klesiah is trained, she fights with grace and precision that make any battles against her look almost like a ballet of death. Hao is barbarous, angry, fighting with the overwhelming might of her axe, a stampede of murder. Elina was a force of nature, mingling wind and Holy magic with precise training to make an overwhelming foe. Daiyu... Zhu was quite similar to the Demon Lord: a precise merciless predator except she didn't play with her prey. ''Isn't it sexy to see a woman covered in blood?'' Asked your tormentor.''Her dust cloak caught most of that so we got rid of it, I rubbed away the smaller stains on her face.'' Lady White looked impressed. ''If you were better company Ama, I'd thank you for this dream but I'd like to continue playing the game you've imposed upon me with some amount of peace.'' ''My, and here I wanted to ask about your darling little sun...'' Ama pouted, ears and tails drooping.''Shereen is...reasonable.'' Why is it that thinking of the anubis somehow threw a bucket of cold water on the ember of your anger? ''I'm sure you knew that.'' ''I'm glad to know you believe myself near-omniscient with knowing the attitude of people around you. Such powers truly befit a witch like me.'' A theatrical little cackle followed.You could only roll your eyes. ''Sarcasm doesn't suit a witch.''
''Indeed!'' Her hands joined together in a soft clap, feature relaxing into an honest smile. ''Since your feelings are so closed, why not make this little discussion memorable.'' Her legs crossed as she leaned back, somehow reveling in this simple, near one-way exchanges. ''Want to meet someone interesting?'' ''Lady White presence isn't fascinating enough?'' A rare frown graced her face after your reply.''I was thinking you could use more friends.'' The empathy in her voice and the lingering care in her face felt genuine enough to make you nauseous. ''If that's not to your liking, how about making a deal?''''A deal?'' That sounded familiar.''Mmhm, you remember yes? No gamble here for you've enough luck to rival Mother Earth, so how about a little exchange of information instead? A hint to help you with my game in exchange for sharing a memory of yours...''''This again? Last time you wanted to know about Klesiah, how she shared her story... then it was Hao pledge, what's new now?'' Two of her tails slithered around her shoulder, one going around her neck with the dexterity of a snake. ''Why, Elina of course. Something major happened to her during your... sleepytime and I'd love to know the details. What ties you to those girls is something I'm... wishing to understand a little better and I've always hared Tuilelaith little guilty pleasure to experience glimpses of people's lives.'' She chuckles on seeing your expression. ''Besides, not only am I under contract for now, but you know that I'm being entirely truthful in saying that I wouldn't be harming any of them right? You might gain a precious advantage...'' So far you've rebuked every single one of these ''offer'' from Lady White and consequently, you've acquired several memories she's curious about. Ama influence was always a two-way street and now she was making use of it to project casual sincerity as if you were somehow joined together in a soul link... it was a disgusting comparison given the state of your soul but there was no other way to describe this flow of foreign emotions. >''I'd rather meet this ''interesting person'' you've hinted about.'' (Might as well try to gain something from her intrusion in your psyche.)>''A hint for sharing one of my memories is it? Fine, this better be good.'' (Ama's game is likely going to be a long one, getting any kind of advantage would be wise... It's not a big price.) [Share Klesiah/Hao/Elina special memories]>''I'd rather not have to endure your existence more than I need to. Get out of my head, I'd like to wake up rested.'' (Shoo off this annoying, murderous psychopath. No deal with the devil.)
>>3902804>''I'd rather not have to endure your existence more than I need to. Get out of my head, I'd like to wake up rested.'' (Shoo off this annoying, murderous psychopath. No deal with the devil.)If she really wanted to find out what happened she probably has other ways to do so.At least it's a good indication that without her increasing her control over us that if we were to develop a method of communication that utilized the soul links that it would remain private.
>>3902804>Isn't it sexy to see a woman covered in blood?Damned fox has got me read, but does Arawn share my proclivities in this regard?So it would seem Elina got a power-up or something somehow. Is she still interested in the other memories? If she has what amounts to a soul link wouldn't her mastery of souls allow her to just pluck them out of our head? I kinda want to give her one but I really don't want her to know who Elina's linked/related to.
I'd like two votes to see where the wind goes with Ama, so I'll wait a little while.
>>3902828>Is she still interested in the other memories?Yes, you can share Klesiah moments where she explained your past in details, Hao showing oyu and the gals her discovery of the hill in throne Town, or Alina and Hadraniel sisterly reunion. > If she has what amounts to a soul link wouldn't her mastery of souls allow her to just pluck them out of our head?Well, for now, she's under contract not to but hey, she asked previously too. Who know?
>>3902831>Those typos.Yeesh. Not at my best tonight, I'll blame my health.
>>3902835Well then, an opportunity to troll us later, a potential hint about how Gardy ties into all of this, or knowing that Elina and the Embodiment of Love are sisters.Share Klesiah's memory, but only after verifying that she gets no other memories past or future without our consent, cannot get them without our consent after this one in the future (she's a liar who lies after all), and that anyone within this one is off limits too (we've yet to encounter Hecate and she's in that memory). Ask if that's also in the contract or can be added to it while we're at it.
>>3902848>Share Klesiah's memory, but only after verifying that she gets no other memories past or future without our consentOf course, she can only get what you want to share; that's the honesty coming from her influence flowing into you.>cannot get them without our consent after this one in the future > and that anyone within this one is off limits too (we've yet to encounter Hecate and she's in that memory)She'll respect her contract and your wishes in the hope of fostering a mutually beneficial relationship! So, we've got one for one. I'll wait a little longer before rolling between sharing Klesiah memory to gain a valuable hint or chasing off the fox with a broom.
>''Isn't it sexy to see a woman covered in blood?'Not exactly a kink of mine, but I can see the appeal. Also depends on the woman in question.>>3902804...I hate it, but last time we ignored Ama's offer... well, the Throne Town attack caught us with our pants down.So I'm leaning towards sharing a memory, but ONLY the one.But my memory fails me. Klesiah shared Arawn's past to pretty much everyone who was in Arawn's social circle at the time, yes? It was not exactly a very personal affair I think...Apologies in advance if my IP keeps hopping during the thread. If you see a lot of low post count IP's, it's probably me.
>>3902882>But my memory fails me. Klesiah shared Arawn's past to pretty much everyone who was in Arawn's social circle at the time, yes? It was not exactly a very personal affair I think...Indeed but that doesn't mean the girls went nad shared the story either. It's one of the memories Ama wants.So I take it it's a vote for sharing?I'll keep that in mind, thank. When rolls happen you can always point out who you are with a spoiler.
>>3902888Yeah, sure. Share the Klesiah memory. Least personal of the three options, and indulging Ama will hopefully keep her off our back about sharing for a while The girls might not like it if they find out about us sharing, but in that even all I'll ask is that they understand why.If my IP starts hopping really badly I might setup a tripcode called Anonymous to save everyone the headache. Fingers crossed I won't have to.
''Since you're willing to work with a handicap...'' Her face, damn you for finding it so gorgeous, was illuminated with such a sincere ray of joy that you decided to look at the imaginary pastries instead. ''...I'll takes all the advantages I can get. Having an agreement is better than being randomly kidnapped.'' ''Waiting a decade for your -and your darling lovers- souls to organically heal wasn't a good deal to me.'' Ama responded, slowly rising to her feet. Her dancing tails added to her joyous face as she sauntered closer, holding forward a hand to keep you seated. ''I'm quite happy to know that you're willing to make deals, Arawn. This will be fair, no need for either of us to be mean and ugly... keeping oneself civilized truly is the bedrock of any relationship.'' A flash of Throne Town assault gripped your conscious mind. One of those ugly abomination trampling the corpse of a demoness. ''You could say that.'' You responded, resisting the urge to grimace when her hand went to gently rub your scalp. ''Now my dear, remember that moment with Klesiah, her story, her emotions... Details are likely murky now after one year of slumber so I'll give you a little help.'' A deal was a deal, while keeping your guard up you did as told and threw your mind into remembrance, that period inside Sieglinde's room... Not too long after she joined your group after ''betraying'' that duchess Gremory. Her story, her emotions, your past ties, her constant hesitation, the untold message that her efforts with the slaves had been nothing more than finding a proper ''death.'' These memories, these implications, her words and also the sympathy and care coming from the large circle of Mamonos that were so very curious to know this story manifested into an intense feeling of longing.Daiyu family, Teruko invasiveness, the girls you are linked to... Throne Town truly is your home, isn't it? Or at least it has been your first one, the trouble in the Allied Kingdoms might make it impossible to return now, but at least those two short months had been precious indeed for you -and Klesiah- were accepted wholeheartedly... and... You want to go back. But your knight is in the witch clutch so you'll play her game as long as you'll need to get her back. ''My...'' Lady White hand left your face gently and this bout of intense nostalgia disappeared. ''...such an intensely pure girl drenched in unforgivable sins. Not at all weighted down.'' ''What the hell do you mean by that? Klesiah hasn't done anything wrong!'' This time you got up, Ama took a step back while shaking a finger. ''No matter the justification kinslaying is an unpardonable sin. It's a surprising constant of most human culture so of course, Mamonos follows; yet none of your darling companions voiced disgusts... My, they actually understood. Harmony is a wonderful thing.''
''Her dad had dragged out a lamia kid in the street and was about to slice open her throat.'' What did your past self think about that? Back then, you and Hecate were seemingly on your own, out into the streets... ''Indeed, what a beautiful mind, a strength of character to rival your own. It is little wonder that Jena couldn't do anything to her after being reunited with her darling after his death! Truly out of a fairytale.''Klesiah had spent an entire year in Lady White company... or perhaps it'd be more apt to call that a dungeon. Yet she hadn't looked any worse, though during your establishment of the Soul Link... wasn't there some kind of presence inside of her?''Keep your deal, Ama.'' Lady White could have enough influence to read some of your thoughts, better concentrate on something else. ''Of course.'' She walked close once more, hips and tails sashaying with every move, the generous opening on her chest making you stare into those carmine eyes. ''This game has many players, but you're the main one.'' She giggled on seeing your irritation, ears twitching. ''Find out everything you can about Muribel Pearls of Power, they are a vital facet of this game.''Pearls of Power? This sounded strangely familiar... Then the luxurious scenery of Lady White teahouse began to blur, making you understand it was time to wake up.--Noises from the window carved into the very rocks filtered into your room, Marleon woke up early and now that the sun had completely risen people activities coupled into a familiar brouhaha that felt oddly comforting. Maybe you're something of a city boy. However, there was a presence lazing beside you. Long disheveled white hair fell onto a completely naked back that, unlike you, didn't have anything below the waist either. Zhu... she... snuck into your bed? It wasn't particularly big so your arm had been touching her all this while, making it slightly damp with sweat because of this country harsh sun. She's naked too and that back, despite a few scars looked...! No, no. Now's not the time for that. You told her to remain inside her room after that messy fight yet here she is! you even put a chair against the door for Father Sky sake! You could use some of his help when it comes to vigilance. It's a bit of whiplash after meeting Lady White.>''What the hell are you doing here, Zhu?'' (Be direct and nonchalant, show her you won't be so easily disturbed?)>Get out of bed silently and try your best to put on your equipment without making noises too. Leave that sleepy head to her own device. (Will need 1d20. Roll only after we agree.) >''Ever heard about Pearls of Power, Zhu?'' (You probably can't ask anyone else about this, might as well start.)>Free
>>3903014>FreeCan we just lie there until she wakes up? We are supposed to be lazy after all.
FUCK. I forgot that Klesiah shared about her killing her own father, dammit!Ugh, one of these damn days I'll have to read through the archives and refresh my memory.>>3903014>>''What the hell are you doing here, Zhu?'' (Be direct and nonchalant, show her you won't be so easily disturbed?)"...Did you tend to sneak to me like this in the past?"Zhu will find out that the Arawn of today is far more restrained and cautious when it comes to certain things.>>3903025...We can lie in bed and converse at the same time. Multitasking, woo!
>>3903025Lazy but also a little stressed because of that dream. However, you're right. Very fitting.>>3903035Multitasking is hard for a lazy man but I think Arawn can do it.
>>3903014>"This game has many players, but you're the main oneYep, knew it, damned nobility and possibly even the royals are in on this. Need to hit an archive or two, look up info on those pearls, then ask Shereen about em' afterwards. Bring book and point to words on the page as I doubt Ama will let us do that directly, it's another toothache waiting to happen.>It is little wonder that Jena couldn't do anything to her after being reunited with her darling after his death!She talking about us and Klesiah, or Jena and her lover or something? Also, what's the slowest and most painful way to kill a bloodsucker? Seems that Jena's been torturing our girl or something ever since we woke up. Gonna need to pay her back for everything she's done. Next to Ama, she's at the top of our "to kill" list!
>>3903044>She talking about us and Klesiah, or Jena and her lover or something? Ama is talking about Klesiah, essentially implying that Jena ''couldn't do anything to her'' by commenting on what she saw in that moment.>Also, what's the slowest and most painful way to kill a bloodsucker?There's no magic trick. I'm sure you can think of many things since bloodsuckers are still living beings; feeding them poisoned blood is a good start.
>>3903038Well, you know how it is with lazy people and difficult jobs. They'll find an easy way to do it!>>3903044>Also, what's the slowest and most painful way to kill a bloodsucker?Going by what I remember Insert saying, killing a vampire is inherently a slow and arduous task. Jena will find that vampiric resilience is not always a blessing!
A wave of lethargy suppressed the stress of your encounter with Lady White. Like awakening too soon from a nightmare, the urge to stay became overbearing and you decided to indulge; if Zhu was so casual about this, you might as well embrace that spirit. In fact, you almost wanted to sleep until the afternoon... but you'll likely be awakened by the little royal soon.Still, you did your best to avoid touching your unmoving companion. If only you had some ice to touch that spine of hers...''What do you think you're doing, Zhu?'' Your voice provoked a giggle from her but she didn't turn.''Sleep.'' She responded, straightening her spine and stretching in bed the general curvature of her body was incredibly tempting, you decided to glance away and look at the room. Her clothes were discarded haphazardly and.. .was that a pair of panties? ''Snuck into my room even when I barred my door with a chair?'' Said chair was neatly placed adjacent to the doorway. ''You did it often in the past?'' ''Honestly, all four of us tended to sleep in the same place when we had to move from places to places. Much easier to be secure that way, Klesiah and Hecate loved it even if they pretended otherwise.'' You heard the movement of fabrics, felt the tepid heard from her slightly sweaty body as she nonchalantly bridged the centimeters of distance. Soft skin touched your arm, her head laid on your board chest. Sensations tingled all over your body, forcing you to concentrate on keeping an even breath else give away your rather... excited mindset.No amount of laziness can survive excited instincts! ''Well, there wasn't any need for that now.'' Good your voice wasn't shaking. This is... certainly different, you've heard all kinds of things about monstergirls generous disposition toward sex but none of that happened back in Throne Town.Good thing you've trained your best in controlling your emotions! ''Yesterday was fun!'' You felt her warm breath on your shoulder, there weren't any pillows to separate the two of you. ''Finishing on a higher note would have made our reunion that much better but you slept like a log.'' ''Had trouble sleeping after killing six people?'' Honestly, you'd have found sleep difficult after that one-sided slaughter but Lady White wanted you in her house... so at least you didn't have a restless night. ''You always did.'' Her palm traveled the length of your chest idly. ''Those thugs were boring, more reliant on their natural strengths as monsters to get the job done which... didn't work out for them.'' Her giggle managed to throw a small glass of cold water on your excitement.
''I don't think you should make a habit of sneaking into my bed Zhu, especially naked.'' Your feelings were the very definition of paradoxical. your logical side wanted to establish some boundaries but your emotions... Were the complete opposite, wanting to toy with that cheeky swordswoman and throw some teasing jabs of your own was quickly becoming an overwhelming urge.Mother Earth, Father Sky... the duality of man truly is a burden. ''Maybe I could do that, my sweet virgin~'' Your body instinctively stiffened, not because of those words, no of course not; she was scratching your chest with her short nails! ''I'm...!''''A sweet, sweet big virgin boy. You died and regained your innocence.'' More movement, she threw off the blanket covering your bodies! Then you felt warm breath on your ear, making you grimace and close your eyes. ''You've grown strong, tall and broad but you're even more of a sweet boy now.'' Her leg wrapped around your frame.''I'm...!'' Trying to be lazy here, woman!''An adorable sugarplum a vestigial elven prince, to be sweetly corrupted by his older lover once again.'' She's... This woman is beyond toying! Here she is completely naked, having thrown off your blanket, invaded your privacy, invading your pride the day after meeting again!? After four years of separations!?>Free
I'd like to avoid relying on greentext choice for this one. How will virgin Arawn react I wonder?
>>3903156Politely, gently, extricate ourselves from her grasp. We may have known her in the past, perhaps even loved her, but those memories are gone now. If we're to be her lover, we'd like to get to know her again first. We want our first time to be with someone we love!Also, not really all that keen on our first time being a rape. Contrary to pic related it *is* rape if it's an elf Zhu!
>>3903179I'll wait ten more minutes then go with that.
>>3903156Oh god oh fu-No, no let's settle down.Hmn. Time and place for everything, and in my opinion this is neither the time nor the place for this. So I say: tempting, but no thank you. I think Arawn has a little too much on his plate to indulge at the moment.Also, having a witch pretty much living rent-free in his head would be a mood-dampener on anyone!If need be, use the Soul Arm to grab Zhu's leg so she can't wrap both around Arawn and shove her off (though I hope she won't be quite that forceful).Hell, Zhu might view Arawn refusing her as a challenge! A hard-earned prize is a sweet thing indeed, after all.Does Zhu... prefer virgins, by chance?I'm gonna hit the hay, thanks for running Insert.
>>3903156Forehead flick followed by >>3903179.
>>3903199I think this is a case of her liking them young and *preferably* innocent. We are both, hence her extreme levels of thirst.
Always the gentleman hm?>>3903199>Does Zhu... prefer virgins, by chance?Want to try finding out?>>3903202>Fetish levelsNow, now. Everything is perfectly vanilla and on the level here!Look like we'll go for a forehead flick, gentle refusal.
>>3903209I wouldn't call this 'extreme' quite yet... if this was, she'd be pulling out all stops on the seduction.Perhaps she's just testing the waters to see how easy or hard it will be to bag Arawn? I have a leading theory that past Arawn was essentially what elves consider a teenager - and being a teenager means being a bag of raging hormones that is easy to seduce.I sure hope Zhu is not one of the "In Love With Your Carnage" type. If she is, then when Arawn really learns to fight Zhu will be lusting HARD.>>3903214>Spoiler...Again. Tempting but no. My reason trumps over my curiosity.
>>3903237This pretty much is pulling out all the stops dude. She's almost up to rape territory. I'm not even sure she'll take our no for an answer!
''Oof!'' Her closed-eyed expression of smug satisfaction shifted into genuine incomprehension when your finger flicked her forehead. this inevitably made you glance down at her body and... Had you not been resolved you'd have undeniably succumbed to lust.No doubt about it, your younger self wouldn't have been able to resist this woman predatory allure! Tall, lean, curvaceous, soft pale skin that made her white hair stand out, a few odd scars added to her charms instead of being ugly marks (like that spot on your arm) and surprisingly sized-...''Enjoying yourself?'' Her voice brought you back to Mother Earth realm and you cleared your throat, making her giggle. Her leg moved away from yours but she still clutched at your shoulder.''Trust me Zhu, I'm a red-blooded male despite my... circumstances.'' Her wolfish grin made you continue quickly. ''But I'd rather not be so quick in... indulging physical pleasures. That's not something I want to do without putting hearts in it and since I've awakened in Throne Town I... I met many peoples -girls- who've become close to my heart...'' Gods you're sounding pathetic! ''Here I am naked in your bed and your mind drift toward other women?'' Your mind blanked in momentary horror only... Zhu's good-hearted laugh shattered that worry. ''Your entire soul went pale for a second here!'' Her hand scratched your naked chest gently. ''You're one romantic vestigial prince huh?'' ''Don't make that a nickname please.'' All those rush of emotions made you completely awake now and you decided to gaze into this crow-like fighter single eye, which was open, revealing this gorgeous chromatic trapezohedron. ''4 years is a lot of time. I'm a static gal but the world doesn't care about that... Ya know it kinda did make me happy to know you were alive, there was a little flutter here.'' She tapped her chest, toward her heart. ''But it's true that you aren't the same guy, mostly because you've grown even taller than me!'' Shamelessly rising on her elbows, Zhu frontal nudity made it... difficult to concentrate somewhere else. The sweet smell emanating from her didn't help at all! Still, this entire situation -perfect training for your resolve no doubt about that- also made you happy. It felt like pillow talks. The hand patting your head quickly refocused your idling thoughts. ''I don't really know what kind of stuff you've embroiled yourself into but at least I do remember those months we've spent as a group and I'm more than willing to let you take me on some grand adventure, even if it ends badly again.'' There it is that sharp predatory smile. ''I'll sneak into your bed again, that's a promise. Especially if we somehow happen across one of your new friends.''
''Zhu, come on!'' There was no way you could feel any ounce of anger or irritation when she giggled so wholeheartedly. It was strange really, you've witnessed her murder six people yesterday yet she's so... carefree. Of course, those monsters were slavers, bad guys through and through, but murder is murder. If meeting Zhu again was one of Lady White machination... you've half a mind to thank the fox. ''Say Arawn...'' She smirked when you gave her the blanket and she covered herself unwillingly. ''...Do you need help in escaping your collar?'' ''...?'' ''There's something you need to do here in Muribel right? Do you need to escape the royals? I can get you out'' Somehow her amusement, relaxed expression stayed despite this sudden serious turn. Her face was angled toward her sword, an empty thing somehow firmly shut inside its long scabbard...''Zhu...'' There it is, that chest constriction, that pain in your heart, the rush coming to your face... Sieglinde, Hao, Elina, Klesiah made you feel like that and now this crow! Your crow?It was... an option. Her singular eye was open, observing you carefully despite her lackadaisical attitude.>''I'll need my freedom to do what I have to.'' (A promise for the future...)>''I think Shereen is a vital part of what's coming. Try to befriend her, alright?'' (Being on friendly terms with your Sun -the second princess of this country- will undeniably yield advantages. You've already enjoyed some of them by purchasing your tools)>''Why not become Shereen Moon instead? I think you'll have more opportunity to test your mettle by supporting Muribel underdog.'' (Zhu is bound to be a wild slave but her potential would substantially increase your Sun prestige...) Stopping here for tonight. Let's continue tomorrow; this choice is fairly important so... having a few voices here will matter!
>>3903341Ah crap, I forgot the usual >Free
>>3903341>"I'll need my freedom at some point, but I also want to see if I can gain it myself. I should be able to work towards my goals here as is, and I'm not expecting us to be alone here for too long. For now, I will play the game, and hopefully when I leave it will be with another ally and friend. In the meantime something unpleasant resides in this city, and I need to learn about 'Pearls of Power.' Could you help with that?"Does this sound good? I'm all fuzzy in the head, so I'm worried it might be dumb. Feel free to rip whatever you don't like out of it.
>>3903409That's a valid answer. We have until tomorrow evening to agree on that so don't feel stressed.
>>3903341Can we mix all the options? See, we may need to ditch the collar for some reason in the future, but we should try and befriend Shereen and Zhu as another moon basically ensures that if a "moon duel" becomes necessary again, well, Shereen has an instant "I win" button and we may well want her to have that if acquiring those pearls or bailing her out in court becomes necessary.Also, if she's aware of how they function or are manufactured ask her to spill. We are magitek engineer wannabe, this info could be valuable and useful to us!
>>3903415>Can we mix all the options?This'll more or less be a ''wait and see'' kind of deal. Zhu's demeanor is likely to change based on what you say... so it'll be important to think about that. She might not be too good at being subtle.
>>3903424No matter what option is taken, ask her if she can pick/hack/whatever the collar. Again, might need to ditch the damned thing for some reason or another. Slap it on some enemy caster and drag her back to Shereen as a new potential Moon for example.Hopefully we'll be on such good terms with our Sun that she'll be willing to weaponize us in that fashion.I don't want to "wait and see" with her though. So for now I'm with mixing options 1 and 3. Try becoming her moon, but be ready to ditch and run if and when it becomes necessary. We can add in a bit of 2 and try to befriend her despite that though. I mean, if "independent action" works out in your favor how were they not good (if not just a bit much disobedient) slaves are they? Their insubordination worked out well for you master! No punishment because of that yes?
>>3903728Wait, I just thought of this, what effect would increasing Shereen's prestige have? Would it increase our political involvement, court intrigue encounters, piss off her sister, please her mother, get assassins interested in us or Shereen, earn us our freedom if it maxes out? If there are big positives to be had that'll effect my answer.
>>3904055>What effect would increasing Shereen's prestige have?In general, people would take her more seriously but it'll mostly make her happier and thus much more likely to listen to you. Helping her prestige will mean some devotions on your part but in this case, convincing Zhu to do a collar would definitely help in that endeavor. There's no big, immediate ''change'' that you'll be able to see right away. For now, the choice seems to be a personal ''wait and see'' one for Zhu.
>>3904208So >>3903409 is a wait and see option? Is Zhu opposed to putting on a collar? She doesn't seem to be a mage so it wouldn't really affect her.And yeah, going forward it looks like it wouldn't hurt to help out Shereen's prestige. After all, the hope is to nab her and Banu as new allies against Ama (either by their free choice or other means) and if a happy sun is a sun more likely to backstab a noble Ama toadie then yeah I'm down.
>>3904443>is a wait and see option?Yup.>Is Zhu opposed to putting on a collar?You'll find out eventually!>She doesn't seem to be a mage so it wouldn't really affect her.Well, Banu isn't a mage either and she got one... who knows if they can do anything else? I already began to write the next update but I might as well lock down voting now.
''I think it's a little premature to be deciding that right away.'' Zhu's lips tightened slightly, the only sign of a changing emotion on her face. ''Shereen could honestly become a valuable ally, there are probably tons of rumors I don't know about the royals but she's... reasonable.'' You became much more aware of the collar around your neck while saying that.''Mmmh.'' You felt Zhu gentle movement as she idly readjusted her head on the pillow. ''I've heard plenty of bar talks about the Pharaoh and her eldest but nothing at all about that little fluff, it's like she doesn't exist in Marleon; nobody gives a damn.'' ''Aside from the Vigil, they knew her and followed our group from the rooftops when we traveled inside the capital.'' ''So you'd like me to take a wait and see? You're not too dissatisfied with servitude?'' Her naked body so close to you felt soft and warm, your breathing stopped when you felt her finger trail the length of your collar and became fixated on her naked arm. ''Maybe I should think of putting that collar then, sharing status could be fun...''''I honestly don't feel like a slave.'' You cleared your throat and leaned away, resisting a new urge to wrap your arm around her shoulder and bring her into a cuddle. ''Shereen is willing to negotiate, talk things through, she's very curious about me and I suppose there have been some shady dealings going on to... acquire... me but politeness and mutual respect took em far enough for her to bring me here and buy my Magitek tools.'' You might not be able to go out in the city by your lonesome but your situation could have been much worse. ''She also did her best to regain my gauntlet, I hope you'll find her company entertaining once you spend a few days in the palace.'' ''Hm... I see. I'll make an effort to be patient with her.'' Ever restless, Zhu moved again, planting her elbow on the mattress to lift her upper body. ''So, Arawn, should I call you burly lord or vestal prince?'' Whatever awe you felt at seeing her so unashamedly rise with nudity disappeared with a groan of frustration. ''How about I call you my crow instead?'' You replied, turning your back on your old companion and rising out of bed properly to grab the discarded clothes all over the floor. ''Throw me some shinies and I'll caw for you every time my prince.'' What she got instead is a faceful of clothes, her teasing giggles filled the small room until... a sudden knock broke the atmosphere, followed by the opening of your door. Why didn't she lock it!? Banu's face quickly shifted into a mask of indifference upon seeing the general state of undress of the occupants. Her good eye locked onto you, then Zhu and back to you. ''She... snuck into my room.'' You responded slowly, all the heat of your body rushing into your face. ''Climbed the wall and threw a rock on the chair blocking the door!'' Zhu responded spiritedly.
''You two will miss breakfast if you tarry too much, her majesty will eat in her room but such luxury does not extend to her Moon and companion.'' With the delivery of her message, the old combatant closed the door gently and walked off, the sound of her footsteps making the wooden floor creak.''Let's hope this will start a misunderstanding.'' Mother's Mercy! How did your past self handle this crow?--Downstair was a small crowd of patrons, all of them face you somewhat remember from yesterday night and with Shereen apparent wish for momentary isolation, you and Zhu ate on a table a delicious breakfast of eggs, bread, and cheese delivered by one of the many rodent little girls that, you noticed now, were all of different races despite their mother rat-like feature. Thankfully being outside closed doors calmed Zhu mischievousness and you became fascinated by her odd eating habit; she ate like a small mammal, take small bites after small bites in a long, continuous process that slowly emptied her plate... You heard footsteps coming to your table before seeing a new arrival. ''Pardon me, sir and madam, to be disturbing you on this fine morning.'' A young man had walked up to your table, garbed in the typical efficient armor of the Vigil, he also sported a short bow strapped over his chest with a quiver on his back, a shortsword on the left side of his waist and a club on the right. A tanned face, brown hair and hazel eyes definitely made him out as a genuine native of this land perhaps of a bloodline dating all the way back from before the Pharaoh establishment. ''The vigil has some business with us?'' You asked and he inclined his head in return. ''Not officially, there is something I would like to ask if you'd be willing to hear me out.'' He cleared his throat when you nodded. ''Are you two... companions or Moons to her majesty Shereen Roshanak?'' Steps from upstair revealed a trio descending on this floor. the eldest of the rodent daughters was holding onto a pair of empty plates while your senior Moon and your little Sun descended idly, fully clothes and ready.''I am her majesty moon, Zhu is our companion yes.'' That was the plain truth for now anyway. The young man, perhaps barely past 18 summers, nodded again and dropped his voice low, taking a step forward to be quieter. ''There has been an incident in Marleon yesterday night, six monsters were found dead in this district. A few of my colleagues saw the two of you out yesterday within this timeframe... Does this incident sound familiar to you both?'' While his voice remained neutral, his eyes glanced at you and Zhu with the kind of inner light that made it obvious he knew the truth of his question. Your companion had stopped eating and grin but before she could open her mouth you gave her leg a gentle tap and she quieted down, getting the hint. Hm, a member of the vigil questioning you... Well, death doesn't happen in a vacuum, not inside a city.
>''These people were trying to kidnap her majesty Moon, I'm sorry for the trouble but they left us no choice; we had to defend ourselves.'' (Perhaps it is unwise to be so forward with the truth but surely the authority of the royal family supersede that of Marleon police force.)>''What exactly makes you believe were connected? Marleon is a very big place.'' (Stall for time, Shereen and Banu will be here momentarily.)>''You've got the wrong people, sorry.'' (Outright denial, your first true lie... Having the Vigil on your tail won't help in the future but you shouldn't give them ammunition to make your life difficult.)>Free
>>3904617>''What exactly makes you believe were connected? Marleon is a very big place.'' (Stall for time, Shereen and Banu will be here momentarily.)I feel like he is trying to feel out how much we learned from them before they died, I'm not against explaining but there should be some caution taken as we don't know how far their reach actually is.
>>3904645I'll close votes in around 10 minutes and go with that if there's nothing else.
>>3904617Stall for time, plead the fifth! We need Shereen here for legal advice, I want my lawyer!
''Grim news.'' You pushed away your plate, joining your hands together. ''But how does it relate to us?''''I follow you both from the rooftops when I happened to witness your venture into the alleyways.'' Ah hell... At least the young man didn't look satisfied or smug. ''Unfortunately, I had to stop midway when I happened upon a sickly Mamono but I saw you both enter the small plaza where the corpses were found.'' His gaze floated toward Zhu's sword, she kept a protective hand on the long handle of her empty blade.''What's this, what's this? My Moon has business with the Vigil?'' Shereen, bless her soul, came trotting at your table quickly enough arrive first.''Your majesty!'' The man immediately pivoted and dropped to one knee, keeping his head lowered. ''O-oh...'' Shereen hadn't expected that. ''No need for that now, stand tall.'' Inevitably, this made the patrons of the tavern look your way but people understood how to be discreet and went back to their games and discussions without issue. ''How can we be of help to you vigilant guardsman?'' ''I was simply asking your Moon and companion about their activity yesterday night, milady.'' He answered quietly.''Didn't you two went on a stroll?'' Your Sun asked and Zhu answered first with a nod, smug grin making her so damn guilty. ''Six murders have happened in the slum, I was inquiring if they knew anything about it.'' That caught Shereen's complete attention and Banu immediately scanned your surroundings for potential eavesdroppers then settled her one-eyed glare at you in silent disapproval. ''Who were the victims?'' The little Anubis furred, clawed hands scratched a few dangerous lines on the wooden table.''Know thugs belonging to one of Marleon two crime lords.'' Shereen noticeably relaxed at this precision. ''Good riddance then.'' Banu harumphed loudly on hearing that statement from her Sun, a reaction that went thoroughly ignored because the little fluffed one continued. ''Our Moon is a projection of ourselves, his judgment is to be trusted; if he and his companion were assailed do they not have the right to defend themselves?'' ''Absolutely.'' The young man nodded. ''I wanted to make sure I wasn't making any misunderstanding because there could be... repercussion from this incident.''''Repercussion?'' He nodded again when Shereen repeated. Your Sun attention was thus diverted back to you. ''Did you have anything to do with that, Arawn?'' She asked you straight up. You've lied to her once...''Did we, my v-oof!'' You rudely silenced Zhu with a kick on the leg and she made a show of it with a poorly acted wince. >''Me and Zhu had to defend ourselves from these thugs, yes.'' (Come clean, you might not be able to wiggle out of this one.) >''Coincidence isn't enough to create a cause, we went on a stroll but we didn't kill anyone.'' (Lying is never a good thing but you can't admit to something like that, it is too dangerous...)>Free
>>3904749>>''Me and Zhu had to defend ourselves from these thugs, yes.'' (Come clean, you might not be able to wiggle out of this one.)We should make it clear that we were acting in self-defense.
>>3904749Is it possible to ask Shereen what those "repercussions" might be if we did act in self-defense (because we did, doubt she'd want us to just get kidnapped without a fight)?
>>3904799She want to know if you are responsible first.
>>3904804Damn, well then, we come clean. We suck balls at lying anyway. Not sure we want them to know it was a kidnap job and who ordered it just yet though. If memory serves, the "crime lord" was being hired out by her big sis or her mom, Ensan I think was the name of the real shot caller. That'd be some seriously spicy shit if it got out in public.
A spray of blood suddenly surfaces on your consciousness, the sound of a body flopping on the ground... When was that? ''Your Moon was forced to defend himself Shereen.'' Lying here was tempting, while you didn'' do any of the killings yourself you still have blood on your hands because you had wanted them all dead. ''And I'm not regretting it.'' You added firmly.Her greenish gaze settled on you for almost a minute, taking in your entire presence and you returned this stare without flinching.''Barely a day in the capital and you kill six people?'' Growled the older woman.''You'd have done the same, Banu. Stupid actions yield stupid prizes; self-defense is not a sin, doubly so for my Moons.'' Banu looked to her Sun neutrally for a few seconds, then yielded with a nod. A fleeting smile crossed her lips too.Meanwhile, the young man looked at this exchange awkwardly. ''What's your name sir? If my Moon committing sins, then it is my responsibility as his Sun to assume them.'' He blinked a few time to restore his mind frame. ''I am Naveed Sroosha, a simple Vigileman, I will not presume to have any authority on any businesses of The Blood, however, I thank your candor sir elf... this incident wasn't a break of the peace between the gangs so hopefully the worse can be averted.'' ''You mentioned potential repercussions?'' Didn't those monsters mention something about Shereen's older sister? Their boss working directly for Ensan?Naveed nodded then briefly made his own investigating survey of the surroundings. ''Things have been rather tense in the capital in recent months, does her majesty know about what's been happening inside the capital?'' Shereen shook her head.''We've stuck to the palace for a long time, if you believe this unfortunate event could somehow affect my sun, please inform us.'' Banu continued.''Alright.'' This prompted the young man to clear his throat. ''About three months ago, the liaison between the two crimelords was mysteriously assassinated creating the first break of the peace between Marleon two main gangs. One is based in Redalley under the Mamono known as Jamene and the other is somewhere in the Arch. This one was also a victim of some upheaval because there have been rumors their leader was replaced by a fully human woman calling herself the Fortune Teller, prompting them to call themselves ''Fortune'' in turn whilst the other call themselves ''Jamene Family''.'' That was a whole lot of condensed information, Naveed waited for questions and continued when nobody spoke. ''Peace between them has been... uneasy at best since that incident. This recent event could be a dangerous spark I'm afraid, because Jamene has always been known to retaliate.''''Some criminal hydra's head would presume itself prestigious enough to quarrel with one of Muribel Suns?'' Shereen chuckled, her voice reaching a high pitched ''hohoho'' that made it difficult to avoid smiling.
''No, it would make a perfect excuse to start a genuine war between them.'' Naveed replied sternly, perhaps forgetting his position. ''That her majesty servants needed to defend themselves will simply be an inconvenient truth, Jamene people... have always been overtly prideful whilst the Fortune Teller is a total wild card. I haven't met anyone in the Vigil that knows anything about her.''You glanced toward Zhu, doing your best to mind your irritation. What kind of mess did she just create anyway? Perhaps something showed in your soul because her closed-eyed face approached you. ''I was bored.'' She said simply, needing no more explanation.How long had she been in the capital anyway...? ''We could be assaulted because that boss need to keep her reputation or the deaths of those thugs will make a perfect excuse to create hostility with her rival...'' Banu summarized neatly, the young man nodded. ''...Marleon does indeed feels like a tinderbox left near a torch with these circumstances.'' ''Wouldn't making yesterday night events public solve that issue? Six criminals attempted to harm a Sun Moon, everything will wrap itself up nicely enough afterward, Ja... Ji? Anyway, that woman won't have any valid excuses.'' ''I... Her majesty is right.'' Naveed grimaced. ''But putting The Blood in danger, as a man of the Vigil... it is anathema to my oath.'' ''A Sun who'd rather let blood flow in the streets and allow citizens to be caught in the crossfire isn't worthy of worship!'' Worship? That's putting it strongly, Shereen. ''Nay, nay we do believe this should wrap things up nicely enough.''Hm... still something nagged at you. A piece of information was missing.>''Naveed, did you know that Jamene has connections with her majesty Ensan?'' (Perhaps he omitted this information because of Shareen, he seems well informed however and that's... probably something that should be put on the table, for your Sun sake.) >''I believe my Sun has the right idea, it'll force that Redalley criminal boss to lose face at least.'' (Who's afraid of a crime lord grudge anyway?)>Free
>>3904954Can we whisper to Shereen and Banu that the thugs mentioned Jamene working for Ensan before trying to kidnap us? Not that I don't trust Naveed, but these walls have ears and that level of spicy shit shouldn't be dropped in public without their take on it.>A Sun who'd rather let blood flow in the streets and allow citizens to be caught in the crossfire isn't worthy of worship!Save for the worship part, Shereen's got an admirable attitude. If she put those words into practice in the past it is no wonder "the people" love her even if the court nobles and her own family do not.
>>3904982>Can we whisper to Shereen and Banu that the thugs mentioned Jamene working for Ensan before trying to kidnap us?You can ask Naveed to walk away for a few moments as you whispers with the girls, yeah.
>>3904985Ok then, that's my vote. I'm curious as to how Shereen will react to this spicy bit of info.
Alright, that's one vote. I'll wait for about 15 minutes.
Whispers it is...Unless I get a quick vote within the next few minutes.
>>3904954>>''I believe my Sun has the right idea, it'll force that Redalley criminal boss to lose face at least.'' (Who's afraid of a crime lord grudge anyway?)Well, death is always an option
>>3905079Unfortunately, I went with the choice above. We'll see what happen about that soon.
Perhaps the reality that one of the gang was directly working for one of the royals wasn't common knowledge; those thugs let it slip arbitrarily but that could simply have been because everyone but you was in the known. Alternatively, Naveed hasn't mentioned anything because it wasn't exactly something safe to say in front of one of the Pharaoh daughters. ''Naveed, could you give us a moment? I want to speak with my Sun.'' A moment of hesitation followed this unexpected statement from everyone but Zhu. ''Oh? Surely you wouldn't be remiss to help Marleon stalwart Vigil?'' Part of you wondered if the situation had gotten into Shereen head a little too much. She's liking this whole ''Noblesse Oblige'' mindset and, while commendable, it's not subtle. ''No at all.'' You reassured her, speaking only when Naveed dutifully did as told. He was probably a little older than your Sun, but he seemed sharp of mind. He had enough initiative to pursue his lead by his lonesome.''One of the thugs mentioned her boss yesterday before things went out of control.'' Zhu remained motionless as you observed her. It doesn't look like she'll be talking. ''Their boss work for your sister, that's what they claimed anyway.'' ''Huh...?'' Banu and Shereen's reactions made you instantly worry because both girls stiffened instantly.Your instructor's good mood was completely sapped, replaced by the kind of frown that made it seem like you delivered the knife that killed her grandchildren's whilst your Sun lovely furred ears had completely flattened.''T-that's...Ooh, that's bad why would she? Why would sis work with so ignoble a character?'' Cracks of fears manifested on her previously overbearing, yet endearing, persona and her gaze went to observe her head, tight shoulders hinting at some inward retreat. ''Might as well kill that bitch Jamene and rid us of this headache.'' Banu growled, making Zhu smile approvingly whilst Shereen squeaked.''N-no that's... How can we, how can you even try to accomplish that?'' Shereen bit her lips, thankfully holding onto her nerves. ''A coworker... Or someone who works for my sister isn't... It'll make things uncontrollable in Marleon too.''''One gang will gobble the other, better to have someone that isn't in your sister pocket infecting the streets. Ensan isn't expected until the weekend so now's the perfect time to give Marleon a needed dose of harsh treatment.'' ''Hold on, hold on. This is getting out of hands way too damn fast.'' Banu single eye threw you a worrisome glare of contained violence. Beside you, Zhu single eye was opened, her entire attention thoroughly focused on the little Sun doing her best to avoid shivering. You still needed to find Lady White nest!
Seeing the distress of your group made Naveed look suitably awkward. Nervousness made him rub his palms constantly as he tried his best to remain straight and dutiful so you decided to wave him over. He complied after some hesitation, keeping himself standing instead of sitting this time. ''Naveed, those two gangs do you know how they operate?'' You asked.''Bits and pieces.'' He nodded. ''The Fortune controls two districts:the docks and Arch to smuggle goods out of both places. They're mostly non-violent, content to be subtle and skirting around the Vigils while planning illicit trades with the other cities of her Shining Majesty realm. Jamene Family has hands everywhere else. They... are more overt in they're dealing, mostly by necessity perhaps since their rival squeezes so much wealth out of Marleon rich trade. Forced protection, kidnapping, stealing. They've been suspected of many things, chiefly among them being...'' There he hesitated, gauging Shereen's reaction. Your Sun wasn't looking particularly well, having closed her eyes to listen. ''...one of the chief suppliers of Moons for Muribel. Marleon is our country beating heart so many strange people come and go.''''No fucking wonder.'' Banu growled.''One of our mother Supreme Law is to proclaim Marleon the safest haven in existence, how can people just yank people from her holy grounds and force upon them the responsibility of a Moon?'' Shereen revulsion had given her enough strength to resettle her emotions and look at the young Vigileman.Her eyes nervously sought yours, little hints of guilt sparkling inside their brilliance.''Can't say I've found concrete proofs but that's the belief amongst the few... It's what most people from the Vigil believe.'' Perhaps his own nerves were failing him, he stumbled on his words awkwardly. ''I'm... We aren't certain anything can be done about this...'' Shereen mumbled, all of her bravado drained by the simple truth of her older sister's involvement. This... is awkward. Zhu little ''amusement'' went and dumped a potential gang war on your lap but it would seem Ensan connection is much more serious than you thought.
>''Shereen, I believe keeping to your first solution to be the wisest. I am responsible for this entire situation even if it was self-defense... I believe it'll help keep Marleon citizens safe.'' (You can't go strolling around inside a crime lord den, let the vigil do its job, knowing her people died confronting a princess entourage should be all the involvement you need in this mess) >''Perhaps we should try having a little talk with that Jamene woman. Shereen, you are my Sun, you are royalty; unsavory types remain your subjects and they should bow to you.'' (Mamonos respect strength, a show of force after this mess could also prevent a gang war.)>''This other gang...'' (This is a stretch but if Ensan tied her name to one gang, why not try doing the same? Shereen older sister influence is wide indeed and if she's a player of Lady White game, then you should work to reduce that.) >''...I need to continue investigating the slums.'' (Finding Lady White nest is perhaps even more important than this entire mess.)>FreeI'll continue tomorrow if I can.
>>3905163Thanks for running dude. So we have time until the votes are counted yes? Siding with a gang would be interesting, but we have exactly zero underworld connections, how would we even schedule a meeting with either gang leader? Ya can't just walk up to some random crip and say "take me to see ya boss, I got an offer they can't refuse". They'll call ya punk, a fed, etc. and just blow you off! That is, if they just don't blow your head off for asking such a dumb question.
>>3905174>So we have time until the votes are counted yes?Yeah, around 2 or 3 pm tomorrow. I tend to settle down to write around 4 but I like having more time to think. >Siding with a gang would be interesting, but we have exactly zero underworld connections, how would we even schedule a meeting with either gang leader?The Roshanak name has a whole lot of clout but asking the Vigileman for advice can help. Alternatively, Zhu has also been rubbing nose with criminals (to kill them, sure) so she might have something to share here. >Ya can't just walk up to some random crip and say "take me to see ya boss, I got an offer they can't refuse". They'll call ya punk, a fed, etc. and just blow you off! That is if they just don't blow your head off for asking such a dumb question.Don't be held (too much) by real-world culture here. Shereen is from a bloodline that believes itself a living deity, so walking up to people and asking is much more likely to make them very, very nervous than angry.
>>3905181Than I am, at the moment, inclined to mix meeting either gang leader (need more info to decide which option is best) with further investigation of the slums to find Ama's nest. This guy almost certainly saw or heard of our display last night. We're fucking cursed by the poison fox without a doubt, but that poison can work both ways.We know she's got a den of cultists in there, a den we can track and destroy with a few meatshields to help of course. Sorry vigil members, but if you think Shereen and family are gods than you can follow in the example of Imperial Guardsmen dying for Big E to keep us safe. Hold the line and die standing you glorious bastards!Is there a Jahy like character lurking about in the city? Is Ensan that friggin' smug and spoiled?
>>3905226Not sure who Jahy is. Hopefully you'll be able to meet Ensan soon... Or maybe not. Who knows!
>>3905235I thought for sure you did, as that's the character you posted there. Well, her "adult" form anyway. She's from a manga, hit reverse image search on those pics, it'll pop up real quick.>spoilerHopefully with an additional ally in tow or an ironclad criminal/treason case that'll piss off mommy somehow. Shereen did say that Marleon is supposed to be a "safe haven" and that shit like this ought not be even conceivably happening but if Ensan and her toadies are crazed enough for slaves/moons and think that they could get away with this shit so long as "little pathetic hiki moralizing goody goody little sis" kept nice and cloistered within the palace only for her to suddenly grow a spine and discover her secret slave network out of the fucking blue thanks to some random elf and a crazy Khornate not-Asian puny humie...Ama likes this kind of shit right? Because I'm betting she's one very, very amused fox right about now. Ensan fucked up, but not in the way she thought when she allowed Shereen to acquire what amounted to our corpse.
>>3905260I really should research a little before posting. I'll chalk that up to becoming a brainlet now that I'm not writing.>Ensan fucked up, but not in the way she thought when she allowed Shereen to acquire what amounted to our corpse.Who knows how you ended up in Shereen's fluffy hands... Either way, impossible to tell what'll become of this gang problem. Doing nothing is also an option!
>>3905274>Doing nothing is also an option!Yeah, it is, but it's also a very dumb one. We're in the shit now, just as Ama hoped sadly. Fortune favors the bold, gotta act if we don't want to get fucked in a bad way.
>>3905274Ok so we have Banu, Shereen, Zhu, and a young male guardsman. That last one has a potential use as slaver bait but let's not go there just yet. We know Banu wants to jump straight to murdering a crime lord but that'd open up the town to total underworld domination by Fortune so that's sub-optimal. We haven't told them about the blood nest yet either.How safe do they think it'd be for us to investigate the slums? We can tell the guardsman/them that we have a "talent" for sensing evil or otherworldly presences if they think we can swing it. The nest might have evidence incriminating Ensan and that in turn would give us some blackmail on big sis. Asking Zhu about how hard it is to "encounter" or "hire" underworld assets and where we may do so might be helpful as well.On a related note, how good is Shereen in a fight? She might get caught in one if we... well go down pretty much any path at this point.
>>3905868>How safe do they think it'd be for us to investigate the slums?Since it's daylight and the general message is that the 6 deaths were a gang-related hit nothing bad is expected t obe happening to your group. Anyone attacking one of the Sun -even if its Shereen- isn't expected to survive the encounter. You'll be likely to have a few vigileman follow.>On a related note, how good is Shereen in a fight? She might get caught in one if we... well go down pretty much any path at this point.She might not be too good in a direct battle but it's impossible to be certain of her potential yet since you haven't seen anything form her aside from a few glimpses of the ritual that healed you.Since we're still lacking a concrete course of action, I can wait until we get something.
>>3905924>''...I need to continue investigating the slums.'' (Finding Lady White nest is perhaps even more important than this entire mess.)We should be able to better decide on a future course of action later.
>>3905932Alright, I'll begin writing in about 20 minutes.
>>3905932This. The gangland throwdown has a timer on it, but not an absolutely pressing one. That damned blood nest, however, cannot be allowed to function for any length of time. Only problem I see is er... how do we shut the damned thing down once we find it exactly?
Alright, let's see what happen.
>>3905942I guess that depends on what it is doing.
''Thank you for warning us Naveed, it might be a little too soon to act on anything.'' There was something else you needed to do this morning, whilst gang going to war inside Marleon could be problematic, it's a lesser problem compared to her cultists running amok.''Thank you for being truthful, knowing the truth about this incident will help, I wanted to be assured of her royal majesty safety.'' ''I've been investigating the slum yesterday and I'd like to continue, I held onto this purpose when I went on a stroll with Zhu.'' A quick glance her way revealed her unchanging, neutral, bored expression. Naveed was suitably puzzled. ''There's a place I'm trying to find... somewhere that could be even more dangerous than this kindling gang war.'' ''What? There's something like that...?'' Naveed looked at you in genuine incredulity.''I can't ascertain anything yet, you can think of that as Sun related business.'' You turned at the Anubis who took a few seconds to register the hint. ''O-oh yes. We came here on personal matters, knowing that we are responsible for such a... gathering storm is worrisome but we still have a purpose of our own for Marleon safety.'' Being unable to go into further details, Shereen threw you a cautious glance, slowly but surely resettling her rattled emotional core after learning Ensan involvement.''My word...'' The young man shifted his stance, looking down. ''...Ignorance truly is bliss.'' ''Naveed!'' A strong, sharp voice suddenly filtered from the outside, attracting the entire tavern's attention. Entering soundlessly was another member of the Vigil, a blue scaled lamia holding onto a steel spear and a trio of javelin on her back. Her youthful appearance placed her in Naveed age range, her short hair added with the masculine uniform of Marleon militia gave her a distinctively boyish atmosphere. ''We're supposed to be patrolling the docks what the hell are you doing!?''''Ah! Excuse me a moment!'' The young archer took off in an embarrassed jog toward his coworker, dragging her toward the wall for a few spirited whispery exchanges. ''Things escalated quickly.'' Banu grunted, her own mood had also improved after some time to collect herself. ''I'm not sure if I should be angry about these murders or grateful their lives bought us this knowledge. I always knew Marleon had two gangs... but the situation is so much worse than last year.'' ''Maybe we'll get a better idea on how to handle things later, for now, I really want to pinpoint that damn place.'' You responded, keeping a careful stare at the pair of peacekeepers. The lamia was throwing your group many incredulous glances now. ''My Moon...'' Shereen began. ''...You truly are certain of that poisonous fox involvement?''''Yes.'' You answered firmly, making Zhu grin for some reason. ''Her people might not have any involvement with the gangs but I believe they'll be a much more insidious menace.''
''Then... Then let's finish that and go home maybe?'' Shereen was trying her best to put on a strong front but it wasn't exactly working.''My apology for taking so much of your time.'' Naveed came back alone, his compatriot remaining some distance away; he bowed politely before speaking. ''I was carried away by the discussion, my original intent was to find the truth and warn her majesty. If you have further business in Marleon then, of course, I will not keep you, nobody from the Vigil would dare.'' ''You're doing a nice job lad.'' Banu answered. ''Better to know grim news than being blindsided.'' Hm, it seems Shereen is willing to give you some faith with your investigation of Ama's influence, probably because of how insistent you've been about it.The gangs will need to wait.>Ask to be accompanied by Naveed and his companion, if you can find the area of Lady White influence, then it'll be useful to have people keep an eye on it. Or at least know about its existence. >No need to involve more people than needed. Finding the place first matter, you'll figure out how to handle things afterward. >FreeAnd finally...>Roll 1d100+25 for investigation.You'll gain substantial modifiers if you don't find the place but keep investigating.
Rolled 66 + 25 (1d100 + 25)>>3905997>No need to involve more people than needed. Finding the place first matter, you'll figure out how to handle things afterward.Stealth is going to be key fin the beginning, and if we do end up locating the Nest the Vigil could increase their patrols of the area while we prepare to deal with it.
>>3906012Well now, that's a good roll...People can still vote about involving the militias or not. 20 Minutes sound like a good waiting time.
>>3905997Tell them to shadow us from a good distance.
>>3906047I was just about to close things. That's an interesting option... I'll wait a little more for potential aggreement then roll on it.
Rolled 2 (1d2)>>3906047>>3906012Let's get things rolling.
>>3906066Ah, ops. I forgot to say that 1=alone 2=being tailed.
Gah, fuck. I fell behind. I'd have shown up yesterday but my erratic sleep schedule finally caught up with me and forced me to sleep early.And then I got distracted so I only caught up now.Oh well, I'm here now and I have a some hours in me to keep up with the thread.And my earlier impression about Zhu being a loose cannon seems to be true. In another world, this quest might be about the elven police chief Arawn and the wild card detective Zhu.
>>3906078I don't think it'd be a good idea for the police chief to bed his detective
>>3906082Zhu simply quits and switches professions to a Private Investigator, and the problem fixes itself!
''Naveed, I'd like to ask something. It might be a dereliction of duty, in which case... would my Sun be willing to help clear that misunderstanding?'' ''Of course!'' Shereen responded right away, almost fully returned to her previous cheery mindset. ''Would you and your compatriot be willing to follow us from a distance?'' They agreed after some hesitation; Moons are representations of their Suns and in this case, the Roshanak name was much more important than keeping Marleon peace. And so, after a little more planning and looking at a map of Marleon, your morning objective was laid out and you reluctantly embraced Lady White aspect. Somewhere in the slums of the Narrow Hills was a place throbbing with her influence, the only way to find out would be getting closer, like following a smell for miles... Leg work is the only thing that'll help.--Walking around the Narrow Hills was a rather unique experience, especially since you took point with your shield ready to push people out of the princess way. Zhu stood behind, hand on her pommel, smiling silently. Her mood had been impossible to define ever since Naveed had intruded on your atmosphere, you thankfully didn't sense the dangerous predatory annoyance that clung to her yesterday; perhaps her bloodlust had been temporarily satiated despite that easy fight. Shereen was behind, waving to people here and there and of course, her guardian ended the line, grasping onto her staff firmly to dissuade any pickpockets. The lamia, who revealed her name before departing from the tavern, was called Simin Merik and followed on the ground a few dozens yards behind whilst the young man took to the city of roofs.People here were of a different crowd compared to all the merchant's districts. A surprising number of humans lived here and stairs leading toward all the wooden houses atop the stone habitations were numerous, making the entire thing a labyrinthine mess exacerbated by claustrophobic construction once your line ventured deeper into the alleyways. There didn't seem to be much business going on here but you didn't linger too much on what people were doing, your unusual group definitely earn many stares but your visible weapons couple with the heightened presence people from the vigil; none of which gave your far escort any trouble, but in general you detected a feeling of... tension throughout the general inhabitants. Thankfully there wasn't any need to linger because you found your objective an hour before midday.''It's there. No doubt about it.'' You pointed toward one of the largest single building of the district. You felt it in your bones, knew it inside your soul; ama aspect worked similarly to a Soul Link, information flowed freely to affect your soul and mind, affecting you with such a profound feeling of certainty that it was undeniably ''here.''
Across what you could only call the long plaza in the Narrow Hill main road was what looked to be a chapel, a rare building of sandstone without a habited roof despite its rectangular geometry perfectly adequate to accommodate a dozen families. A crowd lingered here, a communal soup was being served to hungry mouths presided by a combination of human women and a few Mamonos of lizard-like disposition (those being the most numerous race of Marleon). Perhaps this was close to a hundred people...''Is that a church?'' You could only ask with incredibility. ''Not at all, only one establishment of worship is in Marleon and it is a temple dedicated to our mother.'' Shereen answered right away. ''Remember that place in the Old Ward where Banu went to exchange money?''Marleon temple is also a bank? Interesting. ''It was probably a place of worship for those who called this place home before the Great Crusade, interesting this building remained intact.'' Banu commented. ''You sure that's the place? Investigating here could be complicated...'' It would certainly make for a useful hideout for some of Ama pawn to hide with the crowd... but perhaps this place is much more different during the night. the only thing you knew was that something related to Ama was ''very close'' but where exactly would need further exploration... There were quite a few nearby houses packed close to this refurbished chapel, could be there too. You have found the place that resonates strongly with Lady White's influence!>Wave your militias followers and inform them about your discovery, perhaps they know what this is?>If Ama some of Ama followers have infected a place of charity that helps this community, it might be best to avoid making it known to the Vigil... convince them to return to their duties, it might be better to handle this on your own.>Now that you have pinpointed your objective, perhaps it's time to focus on something else... (Say What/Free)>Free
>>3906133>Wave your militias followers and inform them about your discovery, perhaps they know what this is?Something else that may be worth knowing is how the Vigil is organised across the city, and how its members decide / are given patrol routes.We may need them to watch this point of interest for anything of note, for a period of time (maybe overnight?) or look into what the charity does, and where it gets its supplies from.
>>3906133Hmn. I'll admit, White's cronies have a good sense of where to set up shop. A bank is a good legal front to mask most illicit activities. And then there's the bank's close proximity to a gate, making travel easy.Since it's such a public place I think we should leave it alone for now - unless Shereen or Banu have jewels to exchange into coin. Getting a look at the inside of the bank might be helpful and it'll hardly be suspicious. At least less so than going in without doing business.
>>3906145Oh, don't misunderstand. The bank is in the Old Ward, it's not this smaller temple. this one seem to be a place of charity to help Marleon poors.>>3906141Gonna wait my usual 20 minutes.
>>3906153Ooooh, I see. Still, a charity is not exactly something you go shaking down without some hard evidence.So I'll support >>3906141, we need more info before we can move on this place properly.Hopefully the Vigil has the smarts to do the same. Maybe delegate some out-of-uniform guards to keep tabs on the place?Actually... after we're done asking the guards, perhaps we could make a donation to the charity? It would get us closer and hopefully give us more info.
Alright, time to meet with the two militias.
''Let's see if our companions know anything. Shereen?'' ''Yep!'' The anubis waved at the snake lady then directed your group toward one of the many entrances of the slums neverending alleyways. One minute later, footsteps from the roof upstair heralded Naveed presence as he nonchalantly dropped on the ground, catching himself without trouble as his monstrous coworker leisurely slithered beside him.''I've found what I was looking for.'' You gesture idly at the grand establishment, it really made an impression compared to all the diminutive houses. ''What do you know about that... chapel?''''Ooh... you'd really say there is something suspect there?'' The lamia, Simin Merik, asked cautiously. Naveed looked genuinely taken aback, his grimace was almost dramatic.''Yes.'' You've made use of Ama influence to find Vilma in Throne Town, pinpointed further places tied to her by using Mother Earth web; much like those times Ama conveyed utmost sincerity, this church was starting more and more to resonate with something tied to her. It was rather flimsy, a little weak pulse, but undeniably present. ''It's The Commune, a place to help the people whose lives have been ruined by the rebellion.'' Naveed voice had turned grave, his gaze cast downward. ''If I remember right, I think it was funded by the previous leader of the Fortune then taken over by the Vigil and finally brought under the direct fold of her Shining Majesty who proceeded to allow citizens to properly administers the community need.''''There's plenty of troubles in the slums but The Commune has always been one of those places that remain calm no matter what.'' Simin added while leaning on her spear. Easy to guess why, people in gangs act wildly for all kind of reasons and the general pride of Mamonos only exacerbate this attitude. This, in turn, likely make charitable organizations untouchable due to the inherent dishonor attached to swindling or robbing a place like that. ''What kind of evilness do you believe is lurking inside this gentle church?'' Naveed asked, voice dry and he blinked in surprise at his own words. ''...Forgive me my Sun.'' Then he dropped to one knee, keeping his head low while the lamia tanned face paled considerably. ''I spoke out of turn.''''It's alright now, rise my gentle subject, your heart is in the right place.'' Shereen remained in place, staring at the man with many mixed feelings. ''You could say my Moon has a... talent for trouble.'' There she smiled and Zhu scoffed. ''You understand that knowledge can be inherently dangerous yes? Do not be too eager in pursuing truths.'' ''I understand.'' Naveed took place beside his friend silently who threw him many cautious glances.
''His soul is aflame with numerous colorful emotions.'' Zhu suddenly whispered to you. Her movements had been completely silent, she somehow danced with the wind beside you to speak her words, single chromatic eye in the open. ''He probably has a history with the place.'' He's doing a good job keeping himself calm. >''We believe there might be cultist of some nefarious cult at work in Marleon and this place is where I suspect them to be gathering. I don't have anything concrete, but this Commune will need some investigation...'' (That's the best way to come clean without mentioning Lady White.)>''I will need you two to trust in The Blood. As servants of Marleon, please trust in her little shining majesty that we want the same thing as you.'' (Flexing Shereen name is in your best interest here, it might be unwise to feed info to these guys. Especially with all that potential gang war looming on the horizon.)>FreeGonna stop here tonight. Also as a warning here, tomorrow and Wednesday are likely going to be slow on updates. Probably only 1/day but otherwise, I still intend to continue as best I can starting Thursday. This thread is nowhere near done; we might continue all the way until the weekend!At least if my brain doesn't give out.
>>3906270I'm gonna need to take some time and sleep on this. Don't trust my brain to be at optimal performance at...Almost 03:30 AM hahaha whydoidothistomyself
>>3906270>''I will need you two to trust in The Blood. As servants of Marleon, please trust in her little shining majesty that we want the same thing as you.'' (Flexing Shereen name is in your best interest here, it might be unwise to feed info to these guys. Especially with all that potential gang war looming on the horizon.)We shouldn't involve the Vigil too heavily when chasing up the Nest unless / until we need more manpower to deal with it, as they are going to have more important things to deal with shortly.
>>3906288Sleep is the eternal enemy, a neverending battle to keep your needed competence! >>3906291Thank for playing and voting. I'll do my best to deliver tomorrow.
>>3906270"The evil I sense here is both subtle yet shameless. It preys upon the desperate and the weak in their most vulnerable moments. It offers help, resources and succor in return for seemingly trivial sacrifices that are anything but from her accursed and vile perspective. A white lie, a small theft, it's innocuous far as they know, but in regards to the grand plan of this evil it could be the first and most important seed of a great calamity."I wonder how this bit might work out... I mean, those runes of passage that fucked Throne Town over didn't make themselves and hell, we even drew one in our sleep because reasons that nearly got Daiyu to kill us!
>>3906270>>3906777"I have seen slaughter by the hundreds, I would prefer not to see it by the hundreds of thousands."
>>3906270>'I will need you two to trust in The Blood. As servants of Marleon, please trust in her little shining majesty that we want the same thing as you.'' (Flexing Shereen name is in your best interest here, it might be unwise to feed info to these guys. Especially with all that potential gang war looming on the horizon.)Not enough info, simple as that. All we have is the location. We can't even guess how big this supposed Blood Best is. For all we know, it might just be one person exuding White's influence. Or a seemingly innocuous item. Going after the Nest now with a possible gang war looming on the horizon would be stretching ourselves too thin.>>3906777>>3906812Guys, I really don't think it's wise to say this to the Vigil right at this moment. Naveed is already a bit freaked out - saying all this will just make him exceedingly worried and maybe even cause him to investigate on his own. And that would risk tipping off the Nest that someone's onto it. Can't have that.
>>3906953I was hoping that the end result is that a few guards patrol and observe the area out of uniform with perhaps an "oh shit" alarm button of some form they can press if they just so happen to get caught by some cultists who need to make a blood sacrifice at that moment.We could also try to feel out and exactly pinpoint the disturbance. If it's a rune of passage or something similar we can eliminate it and solve the problem before it becomes one. Gang war probably won't start in earnest for another day or two. Right now they're massing their forces most likely.
Alright, we've got our choice. Let's see where that lead. Waging and questing aint easy.
>>3907234Errr, what choice are we going with?
>>3907240Asking them to trust in The Blood, essentially keeping them in the dark about potential cultist involvement. I'll try my best to proceed with what's been written above; warning the militias while asking them to trust you somewhat.
Damnation, I'm a little too drained to past today. It's not even a long update but I'd rather finish it up tomorrow and post when I feel more coherent. Sorry about that folks,
>>3907381Ok, see you tomorrow.
''It would be in our best interest if you two trust in The Blood.'' You've only heard this title once so far but it was some undeniable reference to Shereen royalty and thus carried a fair amount of gravitas; both young militias straightened their spine at your words, standing with military attention. ''I sense a subtle, shameless evil inside the Commune but it is far too soon to point fingers or even identify anything concrete.''''You want to make this an affair that concerns your Sun, my Moon?'' Shereen asked and you nodded, her timing couldn't have been more impeccable. Her mood seems to have bounced back, you might want to be careful with speaking about her older sister in the future.''Please trust in her little Shining Majesty that we want the same thing as you.'' Despite the seriousness of this situation you almost failed to repress a smile when Shereen stomped her foot at the title. ''It is far more likely that the people I'm seeking have hidden amongst the charitable souls here.'' With midday being in full swing, a meaty stew was being distributed to a crowd of majorly elderly and younger Mamonos. The fact those distributing this food were fully human women was a rather strange showing for a city so full of monstergirls holding all reigns of powers. ''It is good fortunes for Sun and Moon to become of one will.'' Banu stated, the hint of a smile on the corners of her lips softening her usually aggressive expression. ''You two look fairly young to be in the militias, have they begun deploying trainees for city rounds?''''Our squad is still new, we started about... three months ago now?'' The lamia answered uneasily, looking to her male friend.''That is the case yes.'' Naveed nodded firmly, rattled emotions swallowed and hidden behind a dutiful mask. ''Generally, The Vigil avoids recruiting from Marleon citizens but often youth from the city end up training or accepted in its ground here and there, our commander put us all together and decided to make me the leader.'' He looked at Banu's single eye neutrally. ''My two other comrades have been dispatched to watch in Redalley because of what happened yesterday, the Vigil has grown rather nervous.'' ''Not hard to understand why. Still good on you to have approached her majesty and informing her of this situation.'' Banu continued, casting a sideways glance with her single good eye at the Commune.''Then our next step is to ensure this valuable companionship isn't met by some dramatic anger from your superior.'' Shereen added, furred hands clapping together excitedly. ''Unless my Moon instincts are still tingling?''
You waited to answer, keeping your attention on Zhu who, in turn, observed the crowd and general area inquisitively, only realizing your stare and the surrounding silence once her one-eyed perusal was over. Her feature spread into a genuine grin, inevitably looking dangerous because of the naturally sharp angles of her face. ''Did you really lose it?'' She whispered, taken you aback momentarily. Did similar situations happen in the past?''I'm not seeing anything peculiar.'' She stated plainly, closing her gaze. You had to resist the nagging temptation of asking about the intricacies of that strange colored eye, Zhu intuition was something you could trust; she could see strange things and has grown used to this aptitude. ''Hrm...''You can't commit to everything, finding out what seem to be Ama base of operation was one thing. What exactly should you do about this? About the state of Marleon itself? Shereen might be the weakest of her family in influence, it's still something that can be leveraged effectively if you're smart about it...Ultimately, you'll need to focus on accomplishing something instead of absorbing so much information. You do have to admit to liking being something of a sponge, absorbing and absorbing everything someone would like to teach you or by exploring mysteries on your own but you can't afford that kind of activity anymore.''Arawn?'' Shereen approached, bringing you out of this reverie.''Sorry, I was lost in thoughts.'' Bad habit, that.These are the two main choices>Keep your attention with Marleon imminent problem with the gangs.>Continue observing this area of Ama influence. >Free (Always an option)And here's some idea to help you guys in what to do...If you guys want to handle the gangs problem.>Try to find the other two members of Naveed squad in Redalley. Having suitable manpower is going to help a whole lot with this issue.>Probe Shereen with the idea of imposing herself on the Vigil, perhaps you could get better people than five trainees... and maybe better information about the gangs themselves. Making sure Naveed isn't in trouble is a good endeavor, too.>Strike while the iron is hot. Brainstorm with your companions about the best idea with meeting a gang leader right away; a princess of the Blood is in town, they'll HAVE to listen. >FreeIf you guys decided to investigate the Commune...You will need to try your best to convince Naveed and Simin from going back to their duties. (Shereen and Banu can accompany them and eventually rejoin with you or you guys will need to think of a suitable excuse. You can consider this a free choice)>Observe from a distance, perhaps investigate the area around the church...>Plot a way to get some information by sending someone in the crowd. Maybe you can go by yourself, too...>FreeThread should resume properly tomorrow.
>>3908881>Continue observing this area of Ama influence.by >Observing from a distance, perhaps investigate the area around the church...We should attempt to divine the nature, of the irregularity (is it a person, artifact, the location of a previous event, or something else entirely), and should eventually be able to get around to searching the remaining districts of the city for other locations that are tainted by her influence as this may not be the only Nest or point of interest that we find.For all we know it could be a terminus for those runes of teleportation, as no one would suspect a sudden influx of people and supplies too or from this location. At some point we should go over with Zhu the bounds of what our aspect can "see", and what her "eye" is actually doing.And we still need to get around to ascertaining the status of our gauntlet, determining what was changed, and figuring out if there is anything we want to modify. if we do end up sending Naveed and Simin away, we should see if they have some way for us to contact them, and let them know that we are willing to help with any problems that arise with the gangs where we can, though this investigation is equally important, if not more so.Especially since we don't want a rerun of what happened in Throne Town.
>>3908953>For all we know it could be a terminus for those runes of teleportation, as no one would suspect a sudden influx of people and supplies too or from this location. Don't forget that the Runes of Passage also rob people of their sanity. Daiyu managed to resist this when she used one of them but she also never tried again, so anyone/thing going through would be rendered a complete lunatic... or whoever use them doesn't mind that drawback.>if we do end up sending Naveed and Simin away, we should see if they have some way for us to contact them, and let them know that we are willing to help with any problems that arise with the gangs where we can, though this investigation is equally important, if not more so.Shereen and Banu can go with them to prevent any kind of misunderstanding from what is believed to be dereliction of duty with Naveed commander. His word alone might not be sufficient to convince his people he was helping out royalty... at least, not when it come to Shereen.
>>3908968I would assume that inanimate objects, having no sanity to rob, could easily be sent/received using them. Then again, it sounds like interdimensional outsider/Lovecraftian shenanigans are involved in their operation. So the crate full of potatoes could appear just fine, but some "entity" from beyond the veil might have put a "larvae" inside one of them or something (much to the dismay, horror, and agony beyond comprehension of the unlucky soul who ate that particular spud).Also, if one is in league with such entities they could "hold off" in regards to them and their servants allowing "safe" usage (at the low, low cost of your soul and true freedom as such "safety" is concurrent with you fulfilling it's aims over your own if the two conflict). Ama having cut a deal with or even somehow dominated and yolked to her will such a creature isn't beyond the realms of possibility. That Magritew was remarkably well trained after all, and I bet there are things far worse than its kind lurking out beyond the veil.
>>3909202>I would assume that inanimate objects, having no sanity to rob, could easily be sent/received using them.That's about the only thing they can be useful for, aside from warping chaotic abominations with an already shattered mind. You've yet to get any hints of lovecraftian shenanigans so assuming shenanigans related to them is afoot could be unhealthy paranoia. The Runes of Passage were essentially the precursor to teleportation stones so mishaps were... bound to happen. >That Magritew was remarkably well trained after all, and I bet there are things far worse than its kind lurking out beyond the veil.But what, exactly, could that veil be I wonder? And besides, don't forget that Lady White kept a hands-off approach with the business in Throne Town.
>>3909236I'm an advocate of not splitting the party, So if we do continue our investigations we ask Shereen how much she values the likes of Naveed. I'm banking on her valuing them (i.e. commoners who value her) enough to accompany him and his lamia companion personally to vouch for them to their commander after all is said and done (it'll be a party thing. Meatshields are technically part of the party after all).As they approach their commander both ashamed and contrite she (as she's trying to be the "good guy" version of Jahy) tells him directly to pride himself on raising/instructing such an astute, dutiful, and observant guardsman with as much smug as she can muster. The two deserve a promotion, and access to us in all things guard related (keep that lurking gang war under wraps for now).Plus, y'know, locals. Dude might know about a secret passage/alleyway or two he's not exactly keen on revealing but an aspect of his "god" is literally asking him to help he'll lay all cards on the table with no hesitation. Only way you say no to that is if he too shares our curse. Same for the lamia...I'm paranoid, but not that paranoid. Ama's network/divination has gaps, gaps she loves as it's no fun being *totally* omniscient.
>>3909663>I'm an advocate of not splitting the party, So if we do continue our investigations we ask Shereen how much she values the likes of Naveed. I'm banking on her valuing them (i.e. commoners who value her) enough to accompany him and his lamia companion personally to vouch for them to their commander after all is said and doneThat'll be the case yes. Unless you can come up with a good reason to have everyone wait and continue observing the church, the party will get split if you guys commit to that choice. Shereen really of the opinion that this whole gang business is much more important, but obviously willing to indulge you since Arawn demeanor is really intriguing her. >I'm paranoid, but not that paranoid. Ama's network/divination has gaps, gaps she loves as it's no fun being *totally* omniscient.Finally starting to understand and accept the fact ama is the True Heroine?
>>3909665So will we get to ask Shereen what she thinks, or are we going to have to speak up without input? Still not wanting to split the party but that bit of info will influence how I formulate the excuse to keep everyone here. Like I said, we need a local, someone who might know a secret passage or hidden cache. That's where Ama's cronies'd stick the beacon to their dark god I wager.>spoilerShe is a vile villain who desires us to shed delicious tears of suffering. A few drops of ours is worth bottles from other sources. Hence our spot as her "favorite" toy. Damn I miss the other girls right now, if only we had Deru or Belph with us in this situation...
>>3909901I just caught this, but Zhu asked "did you really lose it?" Lose what exactly? Did we have a spell that could truly pinpoint Ama's toadies in the past?
>>3910140She meant your memory because Arawn acted exactly as he did in the past here.>So will we get to ask Shereen what she thinks, or are we going to have to speak up without input?Well, she doesn't have much to say. She'd rather go back home and/or investigate the gang instead of remaining here doing nothing.So far we've got one vote for continued observation, I'll wait about 30 minutes if not an entire hour before proceeding.
>>3910145Continued observation is fine by me, but as I said above I am most apprehensive about party splitting. I mean, how would Shereen and Banu even find us if they wished to return to our side after seeing that Naveed and the lamia don't face a court marshal? We're not just going to sit right down in this exact spot and just watch poor monstergirls eat stew after all. Buildings around the charity hall need to be investigated, poor souls might need to be interrogated, etc.And then there's the matter of little passageways and hidey-holes that only locals like Naveed would know about. Can we at least ask him if there are any around that might be of interest/used by the likes of criminals and smugglers?
>>3910207>I mean, how would Shereen and Banu even find us if they wished to return to our side after seeing that Naveed and the lamia don't face a court marshal?They'll come back to the church or you'll rejoin in the tavern by sundown.>And then there's the matter of little passageways and hidey-holes that only locals like Naveed would know about.Don't try to rely on ''local knowledge'' too much. Especially in this part of town. >Can we at least ask him if there are any around that might be of interest/used by the likes of criminals and smugglers?That's not something he knows unfortunately, those kinds of paths and passage always change with time. We'll go with observation and since there hasn't been any attempt at convincing Shereen, the party will temporarily split.
>>3910238I just don't know what else to say to the attempting to be smug fluffy one other than we're desperately worried about her well being given who we're dealing with here. Tell her to watch her back at the very least, these forces can and gleefully would strike at royalty. Indeed, they already have. Poor Sieglinde.Zhu's sticking with us right? She's good at catching ambushes and related nastiness before they happen yes?
>>3910253>Zhu's sticking with us right? Yep.>She's good at catching ambushes and related nastiness before they happen yes?Depend on what you mean by ''good'' because she sure love ambushes!Closing votes.
When you left Ama to her device -or her followers since she's very insistent about this- it resulted in an attack on the demon lord fortress residence. Those damnable Runes of Passages had completely left your mind, Daiyu had decided to completely dispell the ones her people discovered before the Suppression but... clearly that had been too little too late; Ama is up to something and figuring out soon might be vital.Of course, those gangs are worrisome but...''If you're that certain my Moon...'' Shereen had hesitated for a while but her own apprehension was toward the imminent threat of violence in the streets. ''...Let's rejoin in the tavern by sundown alright?'' Banu wasn't taking your insistence kindly but kept her peace, her words being short and tense ''don't do anything stupid'' that you almost felt like returning given her previous bloodlust; who is it that mentioned assaulting a gang base of operation?The other two members of the militias didn't say much, content to let the little Sun inner circle work things out by themselves and after a little while, the four of them departed for the city center, leaving you and Zhu in the alleyway facing the church, all of them quickly disappearing in the midday crowd. ''I'm starting to wonder if this Moon business is true slavery.'' Zhu was quick to chime in once they left.''I think Shereen is one of those rare owners that are genuinely reasonable. This thing...'' You traced the collar on your neck. ''...forced me to embrace Focus once, if we were to leg it and exit the city there's no predicting how this thing will react.'' With one of the many city gates within eyesight escaping was a genuine temptation. ''Hm, that'll complicate thing.'' Her eyelid briefly opened to reveal her rainbow eye when you gently toyed with your plated gauntlet. Your shield bore some marks from your battles against the salamander but otherwise, your equipment remained in pristine condition. ''I'm almost anticipating some kind of fight now.'' She giggles, tapping her fingers against the pommel of her weapon with enough strength to create noise. ''Don't go telling me you want to remain here doing fuckall and watch a bunch of nuns feed cripples.''
''Cripples?'' She shrugged at your question. ''I'm still thinking, I'm not sure how to even begin elucidating this puzzle; the witch influence is in the church but how can we even begin thinking of getting in? There's also the surrounding area, many other buildings surround it so maybe there's something to find there too...'' The place was right between The Arch, controlled by those Fortune guys and the slum with a city gate barely five minutes away; having an entire year certainly helped that vixen choose a good spot.''Walking in and asking questions is what I'd call wisdom. No need to bother with useless skulduggery when the place isn't even off-limit.''''You just want to get into a fight.'' You huffed and Zhu grinned with honest intent.''Being smart about getting my fix matters, my vi-''''Stop that.'' You don't know if you were angry at this upcoming title or the way she bluntly titled herself a drug addict. Her fix was it? A companion from your past is better than that. She giggled, letting her tongue peek out to imbibe her lips. Muribel sun projected harsh, dry heat that made you want to remain in the shades. The Commune was continuing its activity nonplussed, nuns came and went throughout the hungry crowd to distribute stews and talk with people, their total numbers being around... fifteen; a bit small to handle a hundred Mamonos. >Remain here for a while and observe the activity, wait until the crowd disperses. Perhaps you'll catch something. >Investigate the general area of the church. Are these houses or warehouses? Could there be anything suspiciously connected to Ama around that place? >Take a page from Zhu forwardness and walk into the Commune. It's open for the public and while you might not find anything suspicious, getting some kind of face value impression should help.>Free
>>3910372>Investigate the general area of the church. Are these houses or warehouses? Could there be anything suspiciously connected to Ama around that place? it should also takes up time allowing for the crowds to disperse which will decrease the number of bystanders around if someone were to take issue with our course of action.At least this will be a low risk chance to find out if Zhu is going to deliberately fail stealth checks in order to get into fights.
>>3910372So we're absolutely certain the resonant point is within the church building? That, if we were to somehow poke around in there we'd be able to locate it exactly and then do something about it?
>>3910406>So we're absolutely certain the resonant point is within the church building? That, if we were to somehow poke around in there we'd be able to locate it exactly and then do something about it?Yep. It's somewhere inside and resonates from there. Following the track instinctively will be possible for as long as you keep embracing Ama aspect. Imagining it like following a path that become increasingly familiar, you'll know instinctively where to go.
>>3910413Ok then, good to know. Would investigating the general area give us a potential way to sneak into the church? Would Zhu even bother trying to be sneaky given her desire to spill more blood for the blood god?
>>3910429>Would investigating the general area give us a potential way to sneak into the church?Maybe.> Would Zhu even bother trying to be sneaky given her desire to spill more blood for the blood god?It depends on what happen. You'll have to judge for yourself if she's reliable. Sound like we've got two votes for investigating the area
>>3910448Yeah, I'll get behind that. Please be a sneaky git Zhu.
>>3910462What could go wrong with this woman you've encountered just yesterday?
''Let's take a look around. That busy crowd should be a good enough cover to avoid attention.'' ''Good, I was afraid you'd want to stand there for a while and do nothing but look. I'd have loved to continue this morning fun time...'' You could only clear your throat at such brazenness, her thoroughly shameless smile and the way she toyed with the long handle of her sword made you nervous.''Just rein in those animal instincts, if you manage to see anything unusual I'd like to know. I still don't understand that strange eyesight of yours but let's worry about details later.'' ''Aye, burly lord.'' You rolled your eyes as she closed her good one. ''Let's walk in the heat, hands in hands.'' She promptly put action to words and forcefully grabbed your freed hand, interlocking her fingers with yours, palms touching intimately... She wasn't going to listen to any protest so you went along, leading her into exploring the general area surrounding the Commune.-- Tracing the malformed space surrounding the point of resonance made for a strange malformed circle that forced you into small alleyways to make your full round; often crossing paths with loitering Mamonos who didn't give you any troubles. Next were the surrounding buildings that, much like the church, didn't have any habitable wooden roof; it was as if this small little spot of Marleon was secluded from the strange culture of topside existence. Everything that was a fair distance from the church itself looked to be occupied houses while closer sandstones edifice were self-contained warehouses. All of them opened into alleyways or main roads, only the church itself seemed to share a wall with another area, making general maneuvering easy.Pair of bored-looking Mamonos always stood near entrances to what you could only assume as Commune property and the smaller edifice -that you could only guess to be the main depot- had at least double the guards and was directly inside a tight channel of road, making sneaking particularly difficult if not outright impossible. Next, all paths that led directly into the vicinity of the church itself were barred by gates. None of them particularly big or thick, hints of rusts told of years-long uses that made any further attempt of subtle exploration impossible. The church had a single obvious way in with the main busy entrance and perhaps another with the other building sharing its western wall but that one was guarded by monsters. Or at least, enough of them loitered to give you that impression.''Pretty secure for a place of charity.'' This first exploration had taken the better part of an hour, all this while embracing Ama aspect; nothing changed at all, her influence resonated from the church alone.
'It's like were examining the place for a robbery...'' Zhu hadn't mentioned anything odd but at least she looked in a good mood. ''...There are three angles of approach barred by gates or we could have some fun with some cute monsters but I'd wager my burly lord wish to stick with subtlety?'' ''Hrm, if we walk around again we'll probably start upsetting locals. This first venture was easy enough to ignore but if there are genuine guards all over the place...'' Seeing Zhu hand trail on her weapon prompted you to continue. ''...It could honestly just be some locals, the entire city is probably on edge after the murders so maybe they're trying to dissuade the gangs from doing anything. I'd rather avoid fighting non-combatants.'' The ending of your sentence caused a brief tightening of your companion lips. ''Hm, true... I don't think there's any other option but the front.'' The crowd of midday eaters had thinned but only slightly. Food wasn't being distributed anymore but people still lingered and nuns tended to what seemed to be ills or injuries. Did this place operate as some kind of general aid center? You could also see a few kids coming and going from the wide-open doors of the church itself handling all kinds of materials. Wood, tools, some medicines... This first exploration had taken the better part of an hour, the sun had barely budged an inch from its zenith throne. >Try a more aggressive exploration of the surrounding area again. This time walk up to houses, maybe even step into places if you can find the opportunity.>Try opening one of the gates silently and sneak inside the church. It might be hard in broad daylight.>Try getting inside the western building connected to the temple. It'll probably be dangerous.>Take the obvious option of going inside the open courtyard to investigate. You'll likely have to talk with a nun.>Free.
>>3910623So the gates are all rusty and will probably creak if we try to open one it seems. Is that right?
>>3910683That's the impression they gave you. They're fairly old.
>>3910688Would the supplies that we gathered to repair our gauntlet have some sort of lubricant in them?
>>3910697Unfortunately not. It's all metal objects of various sizes alongside more general items to be reforged into proper tools to conduits Magitek. There's not a whole lot of lubrication needed for Magitek in general.
>>3910712Would it be possible to try and get onto the roof of the church?
>>3910731Here's a better look of the general area pointed here >>3906133The church and its western extension are bigger and taller than all the surrounding buildings and it doesn't connect to the general roof-like urban ecosystem that Marleon has going on, in fact the church itself is fairly isolated because of the gates and the paths those lead do; there's small patch of grasses and gravel to give the impression of some amount of nature subsisting here.Getting into the roof would require an impressive display of magical enhanced physical skills or some way to float/fly.
>>3910623>Try opening one of the gates silently and sneak inside the church. It might be hard in broad daylight.As long as we don't look like we shouldn't be there, we probably won't have any problems from people outside, Zhu can probably tell us if there is anyone immediately on the other side of the doors.
Rolled 10 (1d20)>>3910769I'll wait for my usual 15 minutes before finalizing.This roll is completely harmless and unrelated to anything don't mind me now. Please be high.
>>3910781This is not tanoshii at all. I've gotta make a small update, those choices are still available but there'll be an... addition.
>>3910789So is that good or bad for us?
>>3910811I think the only suitable answer isyes
''Hrm, I'd rather not give whoever is allied to that fox the knowledge that I'm onto them. A male elf of my size doesn't exactly go unnoticed.'' While the crowd of the main road was middling in size, you could see a few Mamonos lingering about, the majority being different races of scaled ladies except for lamias.Those seemed to inhabit the other districts.''Putting some pressure on people is a good way to force them into making mistakes.'' Zhu replied face turned at the crowd despite her closed eyes.''I don't think using battle logic in this subterfuge game is the wisest course of action.'' Had Ama informed her followers about your existence in the first place? Would that be ''fair?'' It wouldn't be for yourself but how about them? Twisting logic is what you'd expect from a puppeteer like her.''Outwitting an unknown opponent is exactly what a battle is.'' Zhu huffed and followed behind as you set out. ''Does being all sneaky really matter when you can throw The Blood around as a perfect blanket excuse?''''And what would be the ramification of that? Strongarming a place of charity by imposing on them my relation to Shereen is exactly the kind of ammo any potential opponent would need to ruin her reputation.'' You stopped briefly before stepping into the crowd properly, observing the increasingly annoyed Zhu, doing your best to conceal your own. ''Sneaking around will be its own fun, I'm sure you'll like it.'' Her mood was quick to change because she giggled heartily. ''It's kinda charming to see how hard you're trying, Arawn. I still think being direct is the best, we know the terrain, might as well get something from our time while we're at it.'' You couldn't repress a smile of your own because right now you were tempted to actually break a gate and sneak inside the church, Zhu would definitely love that option. As you maneuvered into the crowd, doing your best to avoid taking too much space, something unusual happened.When you bumped into someone Zhu hand suddenly thrust to grab them and in a flurry of quick movements, kicked and threw some poor monster on the side of a building with enough force to completely knock all wind out of this random lizardwoman.''What the hell are you doing!?'' This obviously caused a sudden disperse of the crowd and no end of attention. ''Your left pocket.'' Zhu already closed the distance with this Mamonos and held her by the throat. ''She snuck her hand in there.''
That seemingly became a worthwhile excuse for the onlookers, many jeers followers, some even requesting beating the criminal outright as you jogged toward your companion. Inspecting your pocket actually revealed a piece of paper, written on it was this short sentence. Lady Fortune invites The Blood for dialogues. ''Get her in the alley.'' You ordered, casting a wary glance at the crowd, some people from the Vigil were looking but your connection to Shereen must have been widespread enough to consider this ''royal business.'' Zhu basically threw the monster in there, a grin showing hints of bloodlust making you follow quickly to avoid any untoward business. The woman was another regular lizardwoman, green scales covered most of her body, both her hands and feet were of monstrous disposition and a green tail laid flat on the ground as she coughed and winced, unable to place words.''What the hell is that supposed to mean?'' You waved the paper. ''Lady Fortune invitation is supposed to come as a pickpocket now?'' ''I-I...'' Slowly the woman rose to her feet, holding her throat and watching Zhu warily whose hand went to her sword; rather efficient as far as intimidation went. ''...That's what I was told to do, it's not supposed to be public, that's how she wanted the message to be delivered.''''I'm not of The Blood.'' You replied, putting the paper in your pocket. It could always be useful. ''You are her Moon, you are her walking authority... I'm not the only one who's been tasked with delivering a message, you were simply the easiest person to find to plant it on. That's all.''''Hmm... I've heard plenty of things about Fortune subtility but this is rather stupid, a whispering word would have worked much better.'' Zhu question was met by the monstergirl shaking shoulders. ''Can't be doing that with a member of royalty, I didn't... think of doing a proper message that you're separated.'' Sticking to orders no matter what huh? Commendable in a way, if also lacking in creativity. ''Guess you can consider the message delivered.'' You answered, then put a hand on Zhu shoulder. ''Your beating was more than enough retribution, cool down.'' ''Mmh...'' She whined in response. So, one of the gang leaders sent you -or rather your Sun- a message.Going on your own is always a possibility...>Keep your attention on the church (here for choices >>3910623) >Divert your attention to this new issue instead. (Will open up more choices if you guys want to go with the gang option)>FreeLet's continue tomorrow. 3 updates per session is a good average to me!
>>3910913Thanks for the run.>Keep your attention on the church (here for choices >>3910623)Stick to the plan.We're already here, may as well finish up. We can let the others know and consider our options, when we rejoin them later in the day.
>>3910937Alright, that's a vote for opening the gates and sneaking. We'll see what come of that tomorrow.
>>3910937Also thanks for participating, always appreciated! I'm so scatterbrained after a session.
>>3910913Oh hey, captured criminal/gangbanger who knows who we are and why that matters. Good, now ask her if she's got lubricants/is talented at silently opening rusty gates, is a sneaky git, knows any sneaky gits nearby who might be amenable to helping us, or if she knows any secret ways into the Church.Can't let the good fortune of capturing a potentially useful NPC/meatshield go to waste! Thanks for running dude.
>>3911045Hm, this could be a full-length update but those questions can be answered here for brevity sake.>Now ask her if she's got lubricants/is talented at silently opening rusty gates.No to both. She'd suggest buying something like that if you need lube (too bad Arawn has no money).>is a sneaky gitShe thought so but Zhu showed her otherwise.>knows any sneaky gits nearby who might be amenable to helping usThe grounds around The Commune aren't in any way, shape or form friendly to any gangs. The nuns run a tight ship.>or if she knows any secret ways into the Church.If anyone could know that it'd have to be Fortune herself or the higher ranks in her gang.Always happy to run when health/time allows.
>>3911087Gosh dang it, then she only has two other potential uses. Either we tell her to be a good little distraction for any guards/mamonos near the gate we wanna open (she isn't wearing her "colors" or anything that'd identify her as a gangbanger right) or we do a kinda bad thing and make her buy us some lube or other useful shit or mug her for cash and do it ourselves.That or we just drop this investigation for now and haul her ass back to the inn. Whatever shenanigans Ama's up to likely peak after nightfall.
>>3911288>(she isn't wearing her "colors" or anything that'd identify her as a gangbanger right)Yeah she's looking normal. Also none of the gang are wearing any kind of uniforms or adopting a color as their creed.>we do a kinda bad thing and make her buy us some lube or other useful shit or mug her for cash and do it ourselves.Possible, Zhu can easily intimidate her into spending her (small) amount of cash on something hopefully not too pricy.Doing so will, of course, be considered a full choice so I'll count it as >Intimidate the lizard lady into buying you some kind of lubricant to help you open the gate. >That or we just drop this investigation for now and haul her ass back to the innIt's still very early but you can wait out the remainder of the day there, yeah.
>>3911297I'll need to sleep on these options. We can't intimidate her into being a distraction though? I was afraid that if she was identifiable as a gangbanger the "guards" would be most unkind to her (i.e. beat her to within an inch of her life, if not just outright kill her ass) but if she's "normal" than that worry disappears.
>>3911297>We can't intimidate her into being a distraction though?Oh, I completely forgot about that. Given that Zhu beat the hell out of her so easily she'd rather take her chance with running from non-Vigil guards so yeah if you're willing to let bygone be bygone for that pocket thievery (even if she only put something on you) then that's an option. >Use the lizardwoman as a lure to hopefully give you a chance to slip inside a place guarded by the Mamonos of the slum (Main building connected to the church has 4 guards, Arawn identified three areas of interests that looked guarded by a single pair.)
>>3911349Might want to codify those choices in a separate post so that any others can see them clearly as such. Glad to see I expanded the choice pool though, it's what I'm here for. After all, the player must be smart enough to realize the possibilities before them if they are to make truly wise decisions.Just to clarify, the rusty gates leading directly into the Chapel/Charity grounds are essentially unguarded but have civvie mamonos around them that'll notice that squeak if it happens and thus cause a scene upon seeing our entering through them whereas the "areas of interest" are actually guarded but have largely functional and non-squeaky gates?
>>3911415>Just to clarify, the rusty gates leading directly into the Chapel/Charity grounds are essentially unguarded but have civvie mamonos around them that'll notice that squeak if it happens and thus cause a scene upon seeing our entering through them whereas the "areas of interest" are actually guarded but have largely functional and non-squeaky gates?No, all the gates around the church are rusty and unguarded but Arawn didn't see anyone nearby for now, there's no telling how much noises they'll make while opening and if anyone is within earshot. The areas of interest consisted of three particular buildings guarded by what seemed to be pairs of slums residents whilst the big residence connected to the church had 4 people loiter around its main door. No gates for any of them.So, to compile choices.>>3910623All these ones are valid if you want to keep investigate Ama place of resonance. So far we have one vote with trying to open the gates silently and possibly sneak inside the church.Good roll and discussion with player also gave you two possible choices with the reverse pickpocket.>Intimidate the lizard lady into buying you some kind of lubricant to help you open the gate. >Have the lizard lady distract some guards for a location of your choice. So far we've got a whole lot of options but I'll proceed with letting her go and opening one of the gates if nobody gives any inputs by tomorrow afternoon.
>>3911481Ok then, a final question, can we boost Zhu's soul vision? Y'know, use our "battery/lite soul link" spell to really amp up her perception's radius and resolution and may perhaps share in it ourselves so that we may learn to use it outside her presence if she allows us to?Just make sure that getting boned by her isn't the price she asks for her secret gem soul vision. We'll kiss her, touch her, motorboat her if need be, etc. But, again, our new first time is to be with one we truly and deeply love with all our heart and soul. Body's... a bit up to if and when bestest buddy ever actually managed to remain an existence after the Throne Town assault and if he ever thought about things like organic reproduction and how pretty he thought his initial charge was...
>>3911507>can we boost Zhu's soul vision? Y'know, use our "battery/lite soul link" spell to really amp up her perception's radius and resolution and may perhaps share in it ourselves so that we may learn to use it outside her presence if she allows us to?You can only try. Zhu hasn't shown any kind of magical potential.>Just make sure that getting boned by her isn't the price she asks for her secret gem soul vision.Think you'll get a choice?
>>3911512Well, we could always ask for her backdoor and surely it wouldn’t backfire and lead to her rimming/pegging us
>>3911512I just got to thinking and "why not both" came into my mind. I've no sympathy for criminals and gangbangers in circumstances such as these. Who says she can't both buy us some lube and be a good little distraction afterwards?We can also ask in a whisper if Zhu's got any kind of magical potential and if we ever served as a "battery" for her in the past while that happens. Please let us get full magical wall hacks Zhu, that'd really help us out.We'll have a choice, I don't think she'll *actually* rape us. Tempt us, tease us, maybe even cop a feel of our elven D, but I don't think she'll fully just pin us down and have her way with us as we scream rape. Like she said, she wants to "corrupt our innocence", it's her strongest kink it would seem.
>>3911637That'd still be "sex" and at the very least Klesiah will feel that. Remember, we're also linked to the angelic sister of the Embodiment of Love, a fellow candidate for a Khornate Berserker (i.e. a potential "bestest friend" for Zhu), and the Eldest daughter of the Demon Lord. That last one is the chief reason why I don't wanna spoil our innocence.Daiyu's like a gentile loving mother who's a specialist in poisons and shotgun polishing trigger happy dad rolled into one. We make Sieg cry for any reason and we probably won't live to tell the tale! Or at least, wish we had not, for the horrors she'd visit upon us may be worse than our death.
>>3911770Ok, I didn’t know that. And my option was to increase the fun.
>>3911762>Who says she can't both buy us some lube and be a good little distraction afterwards?It could take some time to do both but I suppose it works. >We can also ask in a whisper if Zhu's got any kind of magical potential and if we ever served as a "battery" for her in the past while that happens.Nope, never happened. So far I've only got one concrete vote, I'll proceed with it in around 40 minutes, or maybe an hour. Good amount of time to get things going.
>>3912052So I gotta pick in order to be time efficient eh? In that case, if the gate leading directly into the church is guarded I vote for distraction. Tell her to only get the guards attention, an actual ruckus will draw civilian attention to the gate we're trying to sneak through and that defeats the entire purpose of the distraction.If it ain't, then lube's the best choice. Pay up bitch!
>>3912060Alright, lube it is since none of the gates were guarded.>Intimidate the lizard lady into buying you some kind of lubricant to help you open the gate. And>Try opening one of the gates silently and sneak inside the church. It might be hard in broad daylight.Are our choices, buying lube will tie into the second one easily enough so I'll probably opt for that one and weave it into the second one if there's no more votes.
''I'd say you can do a little something that'd let us forget this little incident. whoever it is you work for isn't held in high regard by my Sun and therefore myself.''''All I did...'' What was left of her protest died to nothingness as a resurgence of pain made her wince, Zhu proximity certainly didn't help. ''...suppose it's what I get for getting caught. Just be reasonable, please?''''What kind of hoops are you thinking of making her jump through my burly lord?'' Your companion face was one of dangerous anticipation, better put a stop to that quickly. ''Boring ones, she'll be able to help us out because I've got an idea. I'm not going to impose some kind of torture.''--Taking a detour out of the slum to buy something adequate -easily found alchemical grease often used in most tavern cookeries of Marleon- and returning inconspicuously took some time because of the capital unreasonable crowd and distance. Zhu had found some fun by keeping a firm hand on the poor woman shoulder, treating her like a hostage a moment then a pet the second but once her ''debt'' was judged properly accomplished by spending what little money she had on her person, the pickpocket was allowed to roam free again without further incident.''What a shame, she didn't put up any fight.'' Zhu groused. Both of you kept to the alleyways again because you couldn't help but feel a little self-conscious about your duo; a woman with a visible sword that wasn't hassled by the Vigil and an elf of your size and build didn't exactly go unnoticed. ''That was a lucky break.'' Your new item was a simple hard leathery bottle, it'll flow nicely and you've got a good quantity of the stuff. ''Don't go cutting people's hands if they put theirs in my pocket now, reasonable punishment for reasonable crimes is what I call sanity.''
'Hm...'' Soon enough a smile returned to her feature. ''...I'm not sure how grease can help with this rusty thing.'' She gently tapped the rusty gate, producing a soft clang that thankfully didn't resonate at all. Beyond was a path of gravel, grass and a flowerbed traveling the length of the church wall, the place felt isolated.You grabbed onto the bars and tugged at them and predictably nothing happened, despite accumulated years of damage this thing wasn't going to budge. ''Well, I suppose it can be dislodged with a fair amount of strength.'' You said while scanning your flanks, nobody was inside this alleyway. You've chosen the entrance furthest from the church extension to avoid potential mishaps with the two pairs of guards over there. ''Will my burly lord try to impress his woman now? Oh, please do try.'' You could only roll your eyes again at Zhu statement but seeing her weapon gave you another idea.''Actually, it'll probably be quieter if you can cut the handle or something after we lube the corners to prevent noises.''''You'd have me waste my blade on this rusty piece of crap?'' Zhu replied quickly, frowning angrily. ''Don't tell me it needs to taste blood whenever it comes out or something. I want to trespass inside the church grounds and we gotta be quiet, overpowering the damn thing won't do much good if everyone hears it.'' The crowd outside had thinned but something was going on that kept most of the nuns busy, after coming back from your purchase a group of the Vigil was talking with nuns. ''It'll be... kind of a waste.'' For the very first time, you saw genuine hesitation on her closed-eyed face. Her fingers danced on her blade idly. ''Never tried cutting something that wasn't living now that I think about it and sneaking someplace odd is also a first. Sure, I'd say it's a worthy enough to bring it out. Things better be good though!''''Can't promise that, it's still daylight and we have no idea what's happening inside... Can't see any doors from here either. Say, does your vision let you see through walls or doors?''''Nope.'' Her eyelids opened at this subject, letting you gaze into that chromatic trapezohedron that replace her singular eyeball. ''I need to look at someone directly to see their colors.''Worth a shot. This could get complicated fast if you get seen by the inhabitants but the church is looking big... It's not impossible.>Try prying open the door yourself with bodily reinforcement. (1d20)>Insist on Zhu using her strange blade to cut open the lock. >FreeAll choices will assume your use of a healthy dose of lubricant to keep things quiet.
>>3912326Can we cut the lock, open the gate nice and quiet, then close it behind us? People tend to notice busted gates.
>>3912402Of course. That'll be left to Zhu since Arawn doesn't have any tools that can do the cutting. It might be rusty but it's still a metal gate.
>>3912326>Insist on Zhu using her strange blade to cut open the lock
Alright, let's go with a cut. I might be unable to do a long session today because of some harmless irl distraction, just warning in advance.
''Quiet is how I'd like it Zhu. I want a better look at what's happening in there without arousing suspicion.'' While talking you spread some of the transparent gunk on the hinges, making it stick to ensure a smooth, soundless opening. ''That's okay right?'' Her first answer was to grab onto her bladeless handle and twist it at a sharp angle, producing a quiet metallic click that separated her weapon from its odd scabbard. There was an obvious spot for a blade left empty.''The things I do for love...'' She answered quietly, keeping her gaze open. You resisted the urge to grunt; the fact she so easily made you feel a sudden emotional rush was frustrating. Taking the long handle in a two-handed grip, you walked away as Zhu angled herself in front of the gate. Taking a few deep breaths, she closed her empty eye to keep the chromatic open and then, without warning, her weapon manifested itself into a sudden blade of gold.What had been empty was filled golden presence, a long, thick and curved edge put the finishing touch on this strange weapon and with a precise movement, she swung this gilded blade, tracing a shiny line in the ether of the world itself and it seemingly phased through the gate.It disappeared a second later and Zhu casually put the empty weapon on her strange scabbard, causing another muffled click and gently pushed open the gate that, with the lubricant, open soundlessly. ''Huh, that worked. What we ate yesterday didn't matter right?'' Her eyes were closed once more yet she looked at you casually over her shoulder.What in the world is that weapon?''It was...'' You immediately minded your tone. ''...a mother cooking. Fairly good actually.''''Oh well. Mmh!?'' She yelped when you grabbed her shoulder and her forced her into a crouch walk.
''Let's be quiet now Zhu, thank you for that!'' You whispered as you closed the gate again. It wasn't solid and will likely open again on its own... but at least it didn't look completely busted.The path you were onto was a simple gravel one surrounded by healthy grass and the rows of plants near the stone wall of the church with the odd windows lining up this long stretch, walking under would force you and Zhu in an awkward crouch advance but it'll be possible to progress under them.Now that you had a better angle, the eastbound path continuing into the vast courtyard with a single door midway through that'd likely end up into the main hall of the church. Westward ended in a left curvature that, after some careful walking, ended up into what looked to be a small picnic area with a few temples and benches surrounded by flowers. the path ended in a cul-de-sac with a single door leading into the church. The wall of the extension was easily seen over the surrounding hays.Lady White's point of resonance changed slightly, whispering that its origin was somewhere downstairs. This church had a basement. ''This is strangely exciting.'' Zhu whispered. She managed to keep silent by keeping both hands on her weapon and angling it here and there to prevent sudden rubbing. >East, try the door that leads into what you presume to be the main hall. Perhaps the business here could let you and Zhu slip by unnoticed...>Try the western door in the picnic area.>Try to look into a window without being seen (1d20)>Free
>>3912547>Try the western door in the picnic area.As we keep moving the aspect should be able to help us narrow our search.
I'll likely be unavailable for the next hour so voting can extend until then.Next few updates are also likely to be short since it'll mostly be exploration.
Silently pointing at your destination, Zhu nodded soundlessly and both of you kept a low profile to sneak under the single window that looked into this claustrophobic excuse of a park. You advanced toward the single wooden door and put your ear to it, relying on the keen hearing of your ancestry to try and deduce anything of note... And heard nothing after a dozen seconds.You nodded to Zhu, she returned the gesture and you slowly opened the door inward revealing what seemed to be a vestibule. A wooden wall with a tasteful deep blue wallpaper and a few small paintings of forests separated this place from what looked to be the church main hall, a single door on this wall was thankfully closed. There was also a narrow stairway leading upward into a corner after several meters of lonely climb, streaks of sunlight kept the hallway suitably lit and a lack of shadows told of a lack of inhabitants directly up there.There was also a tidy desk without clutter in a corner and finally, the area that connected with the church extension was barred by a single locked door; you tried silently.Muffled noises filtered from the main hallway, perhaps 2/3 of the entire church was likely this single grand hall so you were bound to find many opening leading there.So far so good, no signs of anyone.Ama aspect resonates from somewhere downstair, directing you westward, toward the locked door.>Try to get a glimpse of the activities in the main hall.>Walk upstair, perhaps there's something to find there.>Try forcing the door open somehow? (Zhu can cut the handle again or you can try physically overpowering it.)>Free
>>3912770>Try forcing the door open somehow? (Zhu can cut the handle again or you can try physically overpowering it.)Would we be able to use our Soul arm to make the key (assuming that the lock isn't magical.), we should be able to manipulate the geometry of the Arm inside the lock in order to raise and lower the height of the tumblers individually for each pin, until we find the right combination.
>>3912806>Would we be able to use our Soul arm to make the key (assuming that the lock isn't magical.), we should be able to manipulate the geometry of the Arm inside the lock in order to raise and lower the height of the tumblers individually for each pin, until we find the right combination.Yep. You can. Since this Arawn first try he won't be too good at it but you can modify the solidity of your Soul Arm by concentrating on it and manipulate it.I'll need 1d20 for this choice. No modifier for now.Seem like you're the only player here tonight anon so if you roll well enough to bust the dc I'll continue.
Rolled 4 (1d20)>>3912813This probably isn't going to end well.
Rolled 18 (1d20)>>3912815Good roll.For brevity sake, I can also make a player roll. If two other folks show up they can invalidate mine.
>>3912820Talk about self-sabotage.
>>3912823At least you didn't get me to re roll,I guess this is an activity that we can do while we are training with our soul arm if we get around so if we end up doing this again to get modifiers for the roll.You never know when we will need to do this again, it also has the added benefits of not needing (or forgetting )to carry around a lock picking kit.
>>3912843Mmhm. You guys can be pretty creative with that soul arm, don't underestimate it.This upcoming update will likely be another short one but I might end with it tonight and wait for our usual crowd.
>>3912849Ok, take as long as you need i can wait.These threads have a tendency to start early in the morning for me.my current time zone is AEST, Non Daylight Saving
>>3912858I'm EST so it's only 8 pm for me. Today just seem to be an off one but that's alright, these things happen and we've made good progress too; now to see what that 18 nabbed...Best of 3 rolls for each players is probably too generous but I figure it's the best way to be fair since were only controlling a single character.
>>3912864Do we roll again ?
>>3912893Nah, I rolled as a player to get things moving and blew my dc so the door was succesfully picked.
Pointing at the plain wooden door connecting the stony corridor, Zhu followed your awkward shuffle, each creak of the wooden floor making you wince, each muffled clicks of Zhu weapon made her tense. You gently tapped her shoulder and shook your head as she prepared to twist the handle of her weapon, your silent embrace of Focus and the following arm extending out of your spine caught her by surprise but she didn't say anything, only smiled.By injecting a relatively weak amount of magic into this spell you created a fragile thing that was perhaps no better than glass yet forcing a ''flexible'' logic into it changed your spell consistency into something flaccid. Combined with sensitive feedback made this one strange experience: your arm was just like any other limbs of yours yet seeing a full third of it disappear inside the keyhole and being stuck inside a very, very tight place made you shudder in disgust. ''Pfft!'' Zhu masked her mouth with a hand. ''Shut up.'' You groused, operating on sensations alone. You had no damn idea how to open a lock so instead, you decided to fill the space with the consistency of your arm, allow it to take some kind of natural shape and after injecting a little more solid consistency... a natural click followed.''Damn I'm good.'' Unfortunately, your revelry was cut short because Zhu tapped your shoulder, pointing at the other door. Muffled noise leaked from inside, two people were speaking in there. Sometimes luck pay off, this lockpicking could have taken a while.There was, unfortunately, nothing to do about the creaking noise when you opened it into a dark, spooky hallway of stones. Zhu followed gracefully and you closed and locked the door once more with hopefully a good enough timing to avoid rousing anyone suspicion. ''Almost no light...'' You whispered, stepping away from the door.''Really? I can see fine. Take my hand my burly lord, I can guide you.'' Despite the darkness, you could see her grin. Good to know she was having fun with this whole sneaking business. This seemed to be the main connection with the church but there wasn't any such link. To the south was a warehouse only lit up by what few rays of sunlight managed to sneak through Marleon tight alleyway and a few yards north of this entrance was large pair of gates that led into a staircase going directly down.White light peeked from downstair and the gate itself was half opened, meaning someone had gone down.That was also where Ama resonance pinging you endlessly...The vixen certainly chose her spot.>No time like the present. Go down carefully and hopefully avoid whoever is there...>There's plenty of places to hide in the darkness. Find a spot and wait out whoever is there. >FreeLet's continue tomorrow.
>>3912956>No time like the present. Go down carefully and hopefully avoid whoever is there...There is no way that we can confirm that there is only one way to get into or out of the Basement, or if it is (or was expanded) to allow for it to be shared by the nearby buildings.
>>3912972>There is no way that we can confirm that there is only one way to get into or out of the Basement, or if it is (or was expanded) to allow for it to be shared by the nearby buildings.You've gotta operate blindly since you've managed to sneak inside the church without any kind of info.
>>3912975Thanks for the run.I doubt that if any modifications were made that they would let anyone know about them.I wonder what Zhu saw when we made the Soul Arm.
>>3912977Sometimes it is better not to know.Also, I totally forgot about Arawn shield. Sneaking with that aint easy but... you guys got lucky so far. We'll see if that'll hold up!
>>3912956>There's plenty of places to hide in the darkness. Find a spot and wait out whoever is there.>>3912977I think something in the line of a long noodle member
>>3912956Damned IRL BS, at least the options chosen are pretty much the ones I would have had I been here. So Zhu does have a "sword of light" powered by memories instead of one's willpower, so it's a Soul Sword. If one were to, say, feed it an important memory how big and powerful are we talking it becoming? How'd we die if she had that on her? That thing ought to defeat any mundane and/or magical defense with hilarious ease unless backed by a similar tier of memory/soul sacrifice. What the fuck managed to kill us?Since she sees in souls, us sprouting an arm out of our back must have been a Body Horror scene for her. Did she almost throw up? I also think the other Sieg pulled a similar trick in the last quest with some slime. Good thinking anon, I would have asked if that was possible with our arm. Should ask Shereen for a series of lock boxes once back in the palace. We need to master this skill to the point of not needing good rolls to succeed, too useful not to. Now do you know why we fear the dice gods? They are random and their favor shifts endlessly and without warning.Damn, this is where a drone would be most useful. Could we sneak a bit closer and try to listen for anything before committing to an action? Discretion may also be the better part of valor here as well. We know there's a basement, and we know the door that leads right to the resonance point. That's almost as good as catching them red handed.
>>3913119>Damned IRL BS, at least the options chosen are pretty much the ones I would have had I been here. So Zhu does have a "sword of light" powered by memories instead of one's willpower, so it's a Soul Sword. If one were to, say, feed it an important memory how big and powerful are we talking it becoming?That is something you'll need to ask her.>How'd we die if she had that on her? That thing ought to defeat any mundane and/or magical defense with hilarious ease unless backed by a similar tier of memory/soul sacrifice. What the fuck managed to kill us?Having a talk with Klesiah and Zhu could be worthwile... but you'll probably find the answer boring. >Since she sees in souls, us sprouting an arm out of our back must have been a Body Horror scene for her. Did she almost throw up? Nah, it made her laugh.>Damn, this is where a drone would be most useful. Could we sneak a bit closer and try to listen for anything before committing to an action?Unfortunately not, the stairway directly open to the room downstair so you can't get closer without things happening. There IS some noise filtering from down there, it's faint and uneven, some scratching; sound like footsteps. >We know there's a basement, and we know the door that leads right to the resonance point. That's almost as good as catching them red handed.For now, all you see is an open gate leading to a basement dug into the extension of the church. Ama resonance seems to be down there but you'll need to go and see what's up yourself.
>>3913141Footsteps... are they growing louder or dimmer (i.e. is the person walking away from or towards us)? That's gonna influence my vote.
>>3913154They don't seem to be changing much in strength. Sometime there's no sound for a good ten seconds.Can't tell anything else.
>>3913162Hmmm... Would it be possible to approach the stairwell in a flanking move? Y'know, get closer to it while sticking to the sides so that if someone were to look towards it they wouldn't see us? We wouldn't see them unless we peaked ourselves of course but it should be possible.Also, we're not wearing any metal armor are we? A shield, by itself, just makes maneuvering in tight spaces more difficult. Doesn't make too much noise unless you bash it into something. Metal armor can clank though, which is why sneaky gits don't tend to wear anything heavier than studded leather.
>>3913295Yeah, only the shield. It's just something to keep in mind. You don't have any armor aside from your magitek gauntlet.>Hmmm... Would it be possible to approach the stairwell in a flanking move?Nah, it's the kind that ends on a small smooth floor and another flight continues downstair. You can't get a good angle to see anything worthwhile without committing to a full action.
>>3913306So we're currently close to the initial flight of stairs I take it then? I just wondered if we could get closer for a better listen without a detection risk.
>>3913314>So we're currently close to the initial flight of stairs I take it then?Yup>I just wondered if we could get closer for a better listen without a detection risk.You can and did and didn't hear anything worthwhile. There's some activity down there but the noises are infrequent.
>>3913318Ok then, I reserve the right to switch this vote before you close it tomorrow afternoon but for now we press on. Sounds like an idle horror that probably will try to kill Zhu yet ignore us as we're "the toy" and thus count as a cultist of some kind in its eyes. Any form of "soul shield" we can cast for ourselves and/or Zhu? It was a technique Gardy used but did it "rub off" on us somehow? She sacrificed that nice meal to cut the lock, least we can do is the same if it'll offer us some protection from whatever's down there.
>>3913451>Any form of "soul shield" we can cast for ourselves and/or Zhu? It was a technique Gardy used but did it "rub off" on us somehow?Nope, it was the fusion state that did it, not Gardy himself. You can try making the spell without praticing before hand but such a discovery will have a relatively high dc.
>>3913462Well then, provided the absence of other anon input, I still say (while still reserving the right to change my mind) that we warn Zhu to be ready to make a major sacrifice. A shoggoth or worse will need a big time payment to defeat before it can cause a ruckus we're most keen on avoiding.I pray she does not need to do so however. That meal was very nice, and now it is lost to her. All because I wasn't there to suggest that we try to soul arm pick a lock! It was a padlock too I'd wager, those are friggin' easy compared to a deadbolt!
''There's someone down there.'' You whispered to Zhu, pointing at the stairs; those noises didn't have any regular pattern, someone was likely moving down there. ''Perhaps it's an apostle of the witch.'' Your sense of tension made your companion smile silently. ''Let's avoid being discovered, getting an idea of what's happening here matters much more; I'd like to approach this nest with some kind of knowledge so her influence can be properly purged.''Zhu simply nodded, making you doubt if she truly gave a damn about your wish. It was important to avoid rash actions here, one of Ama's followers may have embedded themselves amongst the nuns instead of assuming the entire church was an extension of her will. Slowly you made your way down, minding your weight and stance to avoid sudden noises by walking on the smooth stone floor, Zhu remained behind you so you were the first to get a good angle and see what was happening downstairs.It was a large single room dug into the earth itself with three large pillars helping support the path you've traveled onto. The long walls sported small holes covered by grids, each of them holding what looked to be an urn big enough to occupy its small space. One door was on the eastern wall surrounded by smooth stone, completely closed and unavailable and directly ahead was an open set of metal doors that revealed another room with some kind of big inert machine occupying much of the space; one alchemical light on the roof cast weak white light that wasn't enough to illuminate the area and the single presence in this... mausoleum? Held onto a portable alchemical lamp that helped further illuminate this place.It was an older woman of years you'd suspect similar to Banu. Much of her natural blond hair was changing into grayish streaks, skin marked by time and a long existence in the sun gave her a darker, almost leathery complexion but otherwise, she remained fully human. Garbed in the same long dress uniform of blue and white used by all the nuns, this older maiden was perusing the wall carefully and, having perhaps finally found what she wanted, put down her lamp to produce a single key out of a pocket and examine a few nameplates much more closely. She was muttering something but you were too far to make out anything.
Ama resonance was directing you toward the western wall without doors, this woman didn't ping anything. It wasn't proof of innocence because not all of Ama's followers resonated with her direct influence; she knew this game more than anyone else.''There's an older woman down there.'' You retreated on the stairs to whisper with Zhu face to face. ''What I need is in there too.''''A pommel behind the neck should do the trick to give us some peace.'' Zhu answered casually.''I'm not here to kill anyone that isn't a follower of that witch.'' You replied grimly, Zhu shrugged.''There's no easy solution here my vestal lord.'' She smiled when you were forced to swallow your annoyance in silence. ''Could wait out her business and go down I guess. It'll make things easier to take her out, get what you need and get out quickly; won't have to pick open the gate that way.'' Perhaps more nuns could come back in here, too and there was also the fact that she held onto a key... She undeniably had one that'd open the gate leading to these stairs, too. You got lucky once with a lock, would it be wise to rely on that?Your destination is almost within reach... >Try sneaking in there. The lights aren't strong and the pillars should make a good cover, you might have to separate from Zhu and leave your shield behind but if you can pinpoint the exact source of Lady White influence you'll be able to decide what to do afterward. (1d20) >Take a patient approach. Wait out whatever the old lady is doing so you'll get a clear course afterward.>Be aggressive, have Zhu sneak up on this nun and take her down non-lethally. Perhaps she'll have something interesting on her person.>Free
>>3914244Western wall without doors? So is it just a wall or was there anything interesting or of note on it?
>>3914252It's full of these urns protected by small cage-like doors.
>>3914255>Be aggressive, have Zhu sneak up on this nun and take her down non-lethally. Perhaps she'll have something interesting on her person.Would be be able to destroy / jam the lock in the door that we came in from, in order to prevent anyone else from entering while we are down here, it would force us to destroy it on the way back though.If I think the implications are that the Urn's are full of peoples ashes, either someone may have put something important in the one we are looking for, or we going to be looking for one with a relevant name attached.
>>3914303Place does look to be a small mausoleum for people ashes.I'll wait a little more before locking things with this vote.
>>3914255So it's an urn or something inside of one. Any place to stash an unconscious body such that it won't immediately be seen if someone else comes down here? Also, is that nun about the same size as Zhu? I'm a horrible person for even thinking about doing this but a disguise is a disguise...
>>3914319I would assume the Machine at the back of the room is able to accept bodies, not that we would turn it on of course.
>>3914303Dude, that'll instantly set off the alarm if someone does try to come down. Better to just close it behind us nice and quiet like after Zhu's sapped that nun if you're worried about that sort of thing.
>>3914319>Any place to stash an unconscious body such that it won't immediately be seen if someone else comes down here?Yeah, you could put it in the adjacent open room with that shadowy machine. There's a wall that'll mask the innocent elder completely. >Also, is that nun about the same size as Zhu?She's shorter and thinner. Nun dress could be a tight fit but it'll work.
>>3914339Ok then, we're still horrible people but knock out the nun, take keys, locate resonance source while Zhu hides the body. After that we can decide if we wanna take the time to disguise Zhu or not. She's a sneaky enough git for this right? Silent Movement at least ought to be a skill she's good at.
>>3914359Forgot to add, do not kill that nun, just knock her out. A cadaverific nun will absolutely destroy Shereen and us by extension if we're caught.
Rolled 7 + 1 (1d20 + 1)>>3914359>She's a sneaky enough git for this right? Silent Movement at least ought to be a skill she's good at.She's not exactly a trained rogue when it comes to stealth but knows how to move somewhat silently due to her battle talents, she's really good with her balance.Let's see how innocent, wizened woman gets victimized...
>>3914386Oh boy oh boy.
>>3914386Umm.... who was that roll for? Remember, we told Zhu not to kill her no matter what right?
>>3914394>Umm.... who was that roll for?Zhu.>Remember, we told Zhu not to kill her no matter what right?Of course, don't worry.
>>3914404Fuck, that means a struggle and noise. Damnit Zhu, ya had one job girl. At least it wasn't a 1.
>>3914411It can always get worse, we should probably either head back to the door now, or hide.If I had to guess what would have happened had 1 been rolled it would have had Zhu damage / cut through, one of the support pillars causing the roof to collapse inwards.
Having some more interruption this evening. Probably gonna be away for another hour, sorry about that.Update will come later tonight.
>>3914446Take as long as you need.
Slowly, Zhu twisted the handle of her sword, letting it out of its scabbard silently instead of producing the usual metallic click. Your hand gently tugged her shoulder.''Don't go killing a nun alright?''She smiled, her single chromatic eye almost shining in the darkness. ''Headpat me and tell me what a good girl I've been afterward.'' Now that left you dumbstruck and she took advantage of this to walk away, carefully minding her steps to walk downstair silently, angling her scabbard upward whilst moving surprisingly quickly; she might have embraced some kind of bodily reinforcement during this little adventure. She advanced like a snake, taking cover behind a pillar whilst the olden nun took the urn she was looking for and peered inside and perhaps satisfied with its contents, she began walking toward the open room of this mausoleum. That's when Zhu struck. She traveled like the wind, swiftly maneuvering silently and rising like a striking cobra...! The pommel struck fabric as nun dodge in the only direction she could, the dark red urn in her hands shattered audibly on the floor, revealing it empty of contents. Shit shit! Barely enough time for you to take the few steps downstair that Zhu entered a proper struggle with this woman. She'd managed to redirect your companion kick but a shoulder tackle sent her flying onto the wall, landing with enough forces to shake numerous urns. ''Who!?'' She didn't have time to voice anything else, her knee instinctively blocked Zhu's attempt at striking her solar plexus then animated by desperation, she roughly shoved your companion, somehow having enough strength to force her back a few feet. ''Who!? How dare you strike a servant of the charitable Sun!?'' You took cover behind one of the pillars, the woman struggle allowed you to easily peer around and observe what was happening.''Hypocrites on top of being disgustingly ugly now?'' Zhu response was dry, yet still tinted with her general humor. ''Oh grandma, your colors are rotten now. Greenish brown with spots of non-corrupted darkness now that you've lost some confidence, no more singular hue of stable marshland... What kind of rotten hole did you crawl out of?''
''W-what!?'' The nun voice became momentarily breathless. ''You're crazy!'' She turned her head toward the exit, toward you and so you decided to hide. ''Really? You're pretty good to be holding out like that. How'd you sniff me out? Smelled my sweat? Tasted the air?'' Dammit, Zhu! Stop playing! ''Hel...!'' However more noises of struggle followed.It was Zhu's voice that resonated, she was trying to avoid screaming so her tone came out grave and twisted. ''Come on you old crone! What the hell are you!? No more charade! Let that frogskin out! You're full of diseases and rot!''It seemed like this woman was putting up a good fight, you heard many painful noises of contacts as Zhu was starting to overpower her older opponent but she was standing firm and that meant increased chances of being discovered. Good thing the place was isolated! But how long will that help you?>Join the fray to put an end on things. Still, try your best to avoid killing the old woman. (1d20)>Attack this ''rotten crone'' as Zhu put it with full intention of killing her. She saw Zhu face... Can't afford to have your companion, then you and finally your sun implicated in infiltrating the Commune! (1d20)>Retreat, sign for Zhu to exit too. This infiltration has failed, better go away now.>Free
>>3914622Damnit all to fucking hell. Would it be possible to grab our shield, and make a break for the wall? We at least need to pinpoint the resonance source and it sounds like Zhu's got this. Not in the way I was hoping but seems like she's gonna win.
>>3914622>FreeZhu seems to be able to hold her own against the 'Nun', and has noticed something is off.We should see if we can locate what we are looking for in order to expedite our infiltration.
>>3914653>>3914655Alright, trying your best to mask your identity with the shield and finding what you need is a valid free choice.
>>3914613>Greenish brown with spots of non-corrupted darknessThat description sounds familiar in the worst possible way, please tell me Zhu still has that sword because we might be in dire need of it soon!
The source of Ama's resonance was on the wall, inside one of the urns protected by a flimsy cage. Breaking it open won't be difficult, and oyu know where to find the damn thing but it'll take a minute! You got out of your cover as the women struggled continued. ''Wha!?'' The nun was suitably flabbergasted by your appearance, your shield was more than wide enough to cover your face and part of your upper body so you ran without looking in their direction. This position made it impossible to witness the fistfight for yourself but the noises were telling indeed.''Pretty good with your fists grandma!'' Zhu cackled, noises of struggles, ripping fabrics and resonating strikes followed as she exchanged blows with her opponent.''You'd believe servants of the charitable Sun to be helpless!? Who are you, why did you dare invade this sacred sanctum of the dead!? Wh-ugh!'' More painful noise followed when a body was roughly shoved on the wall, nearby ceramic urns rattled loudly. You didn't need to look for any peculiar names, Ama aspect guided you toward a cage with a lonely white urn at a perfect height for you to gaze into standing. Thus you finally let go of Ama aspect to embrace Focus and heavily reinforce your body. ''Come you need a blade on your throat to show what you really are you disgusting hag!?'' Whatever was going on, Zhu was making a good job of containing the woman.''Mine existence was one given to the Sun and the brave Mamonos living inside Marleon! Why would you dare lie about the purity of my soul!? Why is a mage toying with the honored deads!?'' There was no way to be subtle about this. Using your freed hand you smashed your fist into the cage of the unlucky, nameless Mamono and broke the urn in the process. Pieces of ceramic dug into your skin and more made a few small superficial cuts yet there weren't any ashes in the container. ''You don't even believe your bullshit! Ahaha!'' Then came a particularly harsh noise of contact, a muffled screaming grunt followed. ''You ain't slipping past.''
Ama, sneaky little Ama... What you needed to find wasn't in the urn but behind. You scratched at the stone behind the urn, revealing a fake piece of powdery masonry that quickly crumbled under your reinforced might. A letter rested inside a nicely this hidden little alcove, with something weigthy inside. ''Get back here!'' Zhu bark made you brace for impact... but it never came. Instead, you heard her heavy footsteps approaching you so you decided to lower your shield. ''Bitch literally phased through the door!'' Your companion bore no marks from the wrestling, she pointed her thumb at the closed door. ''Should have gone for the kill.''''She...?'' The lamp used by the nun was still on the floor and that was all signs of her existence. That door leading somewhere east was still firmly closed without any traces of that older woman.''Probably going to warn the coven I guess. Maaaan, your good heart really will kill you someday Arawn I swear.'' Zhu huffed. ''Found what you needed?''''A letter.'' Given where it's been, it was undeniably dirty yet it was a small miracle that it was still in one piece despite the thick and rough paper covering whatever was inside.''Feel like chasing a diseased rat?'' Zhu directed her single eye at the closed door. Had she kept herself from killing the woman outright because you asked or was it because she wanted to see this foe try to fight seriously? She saw something inside that nun soul... but now's not the time to think about that.Thankfully the noises of the fight hadn't carried into the church but people are going to be alerted quickly if that escapee finds her comrades. >''She has to be a servant of the fox. Let's go kill this rat!'' (Zhu face is a known factor now...)>'' We've got what we came for. Let's get the hell out of here.'' (Exit through the guarded warehouse? Or will you attempt to bumrush your way out of the path you came through? It's likely occupied now) >FreeThread should close tomorrow.
>>3914911>>'' We've got what we came for. Let's get the hell out of here.'' (Exit through the guarded warehouse? Or will you attempt to bumrush your way out of the path you came through? It's likely occupied now)Would we be able to create an exit by collapsing the roof?
>>3914911>'' We've got what we came for. Let's get the hell out of here.'' (Exit through the guarded warehouse? Or will you attempt to bumrush your way out of the path you came through? It's likely occupied now)
>>3914922No, it'll only collapse the path directly above you. This basement goes backward to occupy the same space of the corridor connecting the church to its warehouse extension. >>3914926I'll need to know where you intend to exit.
>>3914931Let’s try the warehouse, feeling lucky
>>3914931If more people are going to come and investigate / try and find us we may be able to use it as a distraction while we escape, another potential exit would be through the waste gas exhaust for the furnace, as that is going to need to reach the surface, in order to prevent the gasses from recirculating.Otherwise use the warehouse, they are trying to stop people from getting in, not out.There may be the potential for the Nun to not actually know about her affliction.
>>3914957Unless other anons agree with investigate the furnace, I'll take that vote as busting out of the warehouse.
>>3914957You can assume whatever you want of course, facts remains that Zhu witnessed the nun somehow phasing through the door
>>3914969I would assume that there absolutely, is something weird going on with the Nun, after all she was somehow able to notice and keep up with Zhu.Also we're going to have to take extreme caution with that letter, it is after all similar to how we got into this mess in the first place.
>>3914987What kind of precaution? There seem t obe something inside... It's looking like a small round object.
>>3914996The simple things, like not opening it until we are somewhere safe and alone.
>>3915005How prudent! Guess we'll concentrate on getting out.This sneaking mission was more successful than I thought. Going through the day was the perfect time, was it luck or wisdom?
>>3914911>"We've got what we came for"Yeah, not wanting to relive a rather infamous scene. We chase her and we'll hit a dozen cultists and then it'll be us being chased with arrows and spells firing at us!Phasing through the door eh? Possible to scribble something really fast like "fake wall here" like we're in a souls game? A quick arrow or something failing that? Also, looked at the archive: The colors the nun was giving off were the same as Vilma's when she had a Magritew infestation going on. We and Zhu know her face right?>>3915032How successful was it? That escaped nun's gonna fuck us over down the line...
>>3915032You really like jahy-sama. Is she your waifu or you just like delicious chocolate succubus ?
>>3915085>We and Zhu know her face right?Yeah and she knows Zhu face alongside Arawn general build and his weapons.>How successful was it? That escaped nun's gonna fuck us over down the line...Near perfect aside from that mishap with the nun. We'll see how the escape goes.>>3915089Were inside a land of brown girls so I'm keeping with the theme and posting some. Jahy is juuust smug enough to perfectly capture my mood when I post her.
>>3915116Alright, just remember that her loli form also needs some love
>>3915116>spoilerYeah, about that urn we shattered. How pissed off are the nuns gonna be about that? Wait, it had nothing in it, neither did the one she had beforehand!Ok, I got a research project. What monster needs to consume the ashes of the dead? Do sanctified and properly "buried" remains have special properties? Are they useful in regards to necromancy?>>3915141But her loli form has the ultimate smug faces. Pic related.
>>3915608While I can't answer those questions without you guys committing time to it, there IS something I can add related to that.A very popular way to handle the dead amongst humans (and thus Mamonos) is to burn them and conserve the ash. The reason for that is because one Demon Lord Damien (Daiyu predecessor, responsible for the Great Crusade) top lieutenant was a lich who, obviously, rose the dead from their graves to cause widespread terror. Culturally speaking the fact those urns seem totally empty is really, really odd and would definitely make some people pretty angry. Smug&Sexy > Smug
>>3915628Ah, but smug and sexiness are directly intertwined and thus a smug enough presence can bridge the gap of physical sexiness if they are smug enough!Still, this will come down to an issue of timing. How high doth the sun hang in the sky above at this time? Shereen promised to be at the inn upon sundown but if that is several hours out than we will have to hope very, very hard that the vigil love and trust our hiki sun enough to by and large do all they can to "help" us not get screwed over immediately by running interference. The hope being of course that once we reunite with our sun and share our discoveries that it'll all make sense. Please dear god do not let the head of the vigil owe the elder sis somehow.Willing to bet the letter is addressed to us and that it will both congratulate and mock us while the weighty item acts to provide a kind of boon we may or may not be comfortable with (yet also comfortingly confirms that "the fox" is real and it's from her). Like her aspect that we used to go on this little adventure, it may be a boon, but damned if we don't wish to the highest heaven we'd never have been in a position to acquire, let alone need, it to attain our own ends...
>>3915815>Still, this will come down to an issue of timing. How high doth the sun hang in the sky above at this time?Once you bought the lubricant by strongarming that pickpocket Arawn and Zhu were pretty damn quick to operate their sneaking action, so overall time is only around afternoon, at 4 pm.Smugness need sexyness to be worth anything. It's why Shereen fail where Ama suceed.
>>3915837Hey now, her paws can be sexy and endearing but, well, can she affect her chest? You seem to suggest that she's sporting an ironing board. Is she? Can she not do anything about that if pressed?Ama's got mamaries for days to back her smug sure but she's also pure friggin' evil so that cancels her appeal out! Jahy, Shereen, and Daiyu have at least a semblance of morality we mere human mortals could get on some level. Hate em' all ya want, you can at least come to understand them.Ama? Not so fucking much. A friend of Arioch is no friend of any elf/human/mamono in the ultimate end...
Might be unable to close things tonight. I'll try but it'll possibly be tomorrow.
''Got what we came for.'' You've double-checked while embracing Ama aspect more than enough to avoid wasting your reinforcement by needing one last investigation. Somehow, this letter was the source of Lady White resonance; you've been drawn toward this letter from all over Marleon... ''Leaving it is.'' Zhu continued, massaging and rolling one of her shoulders while closing her good eye. ''Ugly hag was pretty good with her fists, I gotta get better.'' ''Let's bust out by the warehouse, no more sneaking around now. Think you've got it in you to be a ram?'' A wicked grin settled on her features. ''What you oughta be worried about is the people on the other side. No killing right?'' You nodded. ''I'll try but no promise if someone gets unlucky.''Both of you took off running, Zhu easily making headway. Traveling upstairs, going through the open gate, rushing into the long dark hallway was done without complications; your equipment clung and rattled, your steps echoed in this stony environment now that you didn't mind your weight. You heard the door leading into the church vestibule open after reaching the insides of the warehouse and your companion shoulder tackled the closed double wooden doors, busting right through in a thunderous noise of breaking woods and flying splinters.Unable to stop this reinforced charge, Zhu collided with the sandstone wall yet had braced enough to bounce right back, using it as support to launch herself into a thoroughly surprised taller Mamonos; the entire wooden structure of the warehouse shook from the impact of their collision. Then you stepped into the alleyway proper, ending up right next to a lizardwoman who was, unfortunately for her, a little too close. She was barely able to register your arrival when your shield met her face in a violent clash that likely broke her nose because the impact sent her on the floor with a small shower of blood spurting out of her face. You felt something whizz past your shoulder before seeing a piece of wood aimed with at last guard whose reflex had her protect her face with her arms but the impact still sent her on the floor. The last guard was on the ground, having been trampled by Zhu initial impact; one last glance into the way you came revealed a trio of silhouette highlighted by a bright orange hue. A streak of fire had exited the fingers of a nun to come right at you! Thankfully, your faithful shield absorbed the impact without problems and with the surrounding Mamonos being far too dazed to put up a fight, you and Zhu promptly fled into a alleyway during the confusion; reinforced body made your duo far too quick for pursuers that weren't immediate and the labyrinthine paths of Marleon slums hid your escape perfectly once you made it across the main artery of Narrow Hill. --
The sun was just beginning its descent when you reached the comfortable inn run by that cute family of rodent Mamonos. A group of patrons you remembered as the same regular crew from yesterday were preparing a game of dices and the presence of a few members of the Vigil relaxing off-duty made it obvious this place enjoyed some bonus from its proximity to the militia headquarter.No signs of Shereen or the two militias you've acquainted today. And, for now, anyway, your little adventure hasn't caught up with you. ''That was-ouchie!'' Many eyes turned to your entrance when Zhu screamed exaggeratedly from your pinch. ''Hey now... I liked that.'' ''Just try to remain subtle.'' This felt like a poor attempt at flirting, the sudden disinterest from the patrons made seems it like that anyway.''Sure thing, burly lord.'' Zhu invited herself on an empty table and you sat beside her, letting your shield rest on your leg, keeping your fingers on the rough paper of the letter.''So... wanna peek inside?'' Where you felt hesitation and dread, Zhu only showed enthusiasm. ''No better time than now without her little majesty.''Whatever was inside Lady White letter was small, round and solid to the touch.>Perhaps you should investigate the content of that letter. >Have some small talk instead, Zhu has been forward in many things besides herself. (Precise what you'd like to know.)>Try to find your Sun instead, you really ought to get out of Marleon quickly after what happened inside the church. Might be wise to let things cool down...>FreeA Tale of Monsters -33- end.Thank you for participating in this thread folks, things have gotten quite interesting right? This choice will help me tailor the opening of the new thread so it is a valid one.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TrdqP51cwh0
>>3917999>Have some small talk instead, Zhu has been forward in many things besides herself. (Precise what you'd like to know.)Lets see if Zhu can help us put everything together, the things of note that we have discovered while here:The Nun, and what may have been wrong with her. Based on our experience with Ama's cell in Throne Town, they are able to manifest a Magritew, and how we managed to save Vilma.The lack of ashes in the Urn that we destroyed, what you could do with ashes or dead bodies, as a lack of ashes may mean that the bodies weren't cremated but used for other purposes.The possibility that one of Muribel Pearls of Power is the object inside the letter, we will want to search the remaining districts to see if we can find more of them.
>>3918032>The possibility that one of Muribel Pearls of Power is the object inside the letter, we will want to search the remaining districts to see if we can find more of them.You could peek inside and see for yourself...
>>3917999>Perhaps you should investigate the content of that letter.
>>3918061Since we have no idea of what they actually do, it's probably not the best idea.
>>3918075What's the worse that could happen?
>>3918081Lots of things could go wrong.I just had a really dumb idea,could we use it as a focus for our gauntlet?
>>3918094Could always try, though changing the gem inside will need some time since the entire thing is firmly secured.
>>3918107are we be able to use the gauntlet if we fitted it to our soul arm , as it would give us some distance for when something goes wrong, also so we don't lose our actual arm.Also any idea of when the next thread will happen?
>>3918081Did you play the game or you just like this ojou-sama baba ?
>>3918122>Are we be able to use the gauntlet if we fitted it to our soul armTechnically possible but it'll be very unwieldy because of how your soul arm operates as a spell. I'd like to say this weekend but that's probably wishful thinking. Something pretty bad happened to me yesterday so I need to regain my motivation a bit.>>3918124I played it up until episode 6 then dropped it. Umineko was a fantastic ride but Chiru shat the bad far too much for me to continue. Episode 1-4 were genuinely amazing tohugh and have greatly inspire me with this quest.
>>3918140We wouldn't use it in combat like that, it's more if it decided to have a critical existence failure while we were testing it out, it isn't strapped to our arm so we would be more likely to survive.
>>3918169Unfortunately, the gauntlet needs to draw blood to properly attune to your magical pathways, trying some kind of modificaiton and/or test without having it in your arm proper will cause a malfunction.
>>3918173Does the soul arm count as extension of our bodies magical pathways, since we can use it to allow for contact spells at a short distance, all we should need is a reservoir of our blood to allow for the gantlet to establish the proper connections, especially if we only perform the test for a short duration.
>>3918188>Does the soul arm count as extension of our bodies magical pathwaysOh yeah, I forgot about your perk for a second. Using the Soul Arm for tests should work out after Arawn get used to it himself but using it for the battle is another story. The gauntlet also has a chance to outright cancel the soul arm due to its transformative function, ie changing Soul nature to Lightning.
>>3917999So it was a clean-ish getaway. Zhu's gonna get an APB put on her soon so would it be possible to combine >>3918032 with looking for Shereen? Maybe put her hair in a bun or something really quick as well, anything that'd make her not exactly match the description that old nun's gonna puke out at first glance. Same for us, try to conceal our weapon because she probably saw the mace. Does Zhu have any makeup? Could use some right about now.>>3918081Many bad and terrible things. This was, to be frank, too damned easy. That thing has to have a final line of defense. It must be disarmed before opening. There's probably a letter in there along with the round thing. We will want to ensure we get to read it instead of it self-destructing because we're not a cultist.
>>3918592> Does Zhu have any makeup? Could use some right about nowNope. She's all-natural.That choice can't be combined with looking for Shereen because the discussion will be a fairly lengthy one.>This was, to be frank, too damned easy. What if she's playing a pratical joke6 Who knows if the nuns themselves are connected to the fox? Aah so much mysteries...
>>3918612Damn, we still got vigil folks about us right? Can we quickly ask them if they have any idea where Shereen might be? They know we're her moon and we've outrun Zhu's APB for attacking a nun for now it would seem.Gotta ask the question and clear out before somebody tells them to arrest Zhu as those poor fuckers will not survive the attempt if made in earnest.
>>3918895> Can we quickly ask them if they have any idea where Shereen might be?Last they know, she spent an hour in the militia headquarter. Cleaing out owuld be a full choice. As it stand we have three now.>>3918032Here for a lengthy discussion and detail what happened in the church with Zhu.>>3918063Investigate the letter more thorougly.>>3918895Find Shereen as best you can and get out of Marleon quickly.
>>3919079No matter what, do *not* open the letter without running it past Shereen and/or a court magus checking it for traps (if blood magic can make negative repercussions land upon "them" instead of "you" get a vile criminal sacrifice ready because Ama would go that fucking far).As for the hour in the headquarters, how long ago was that? She might still be in the vicinity if that happened/ended recently. I do want to hash this all out with Zhu, but that failed attempt to knock out that nun will bite us in the ass viciously in short order. Thus, best to hash it out in the palace with Shereen so we don't get introduced to cultist guardsmen without her protection!
>>3919085>how long ago was that?Only answer here was ''it's been a while''
>>3919088Damnit, I want to go and find her but that's how many search attempts end in failure. The two parties, in their attempts to find one another by constantly moving about, end up evading each other.How long is the vote open? I need to think a bit harder on this. Currently leaning on hashing it out with Zhu while throwing Shereen's name around to keep her from getting dragged off. Relevant question, can being made a moon be a punishment? Y'know, give a "promising" criminal a shot at redemption or something? We and our sun can always lie about how bad we're treating the nun beater and all.
>>3919097>How long is the vote open? I need to think a bit harder on this.Oh it'll stay open fo ra while. Advertised on twitter about it, I'll probably leave it for a day or two unless we get a landslide agreement. >can being made a moon be a punishment?No. While Moon are acquired through dubious methods and can have varying level of consent with their Suns, fact remains that in Muribel Moons tend to project the influence of the nobles they are attached to. Consequently, it's a noble-only practice, if this is the entire truth remains to be seen but culturally speaking being a Moon is an honor and few would stain themselves with a criminal.
>>3919115Hmm... what if Shereen were to sentence Zhu to being *our* slave? Is that a punishment? I'm really worried about Zhu getting locked up or something. She's useless to us in a cell and it sounds like the lowlives would mark her for gettin' her wig split in the dungeons for punching a nun.I mean, in this case it's "They're locked up with her" situation but I still worry for her safety! Wait, just occurred to me. We're Shereen's moon and *we* avoided getting ID'd. If it's a he said she said our word would outweigh the nun's would it not?
>>3920051>If it's a he said she said our word would outweigh the nun's would it not?Would depend on what outside parties think, but yeah it'd be your word against hers and consequently, Shereen.
>>3920058Ok, cross that bridge when we come to it. Still wanna alter Zhu's hairstyle somewhere a bit more secluded. Maybe swap shirts too. This is a legit tactic in counter-surveillance BTW. You'd be absolutely shocked at how many tails lost the TI because they ducked into a bathroom, swapped into a different outfit, undid their ponytail, and just walked out like they owned the joint. This assumes we're trying to get lost in a crowd but hey, it can't hurt right?
>>3920152Is it safe to toy with Zhu body in such a way?
>>3920164>spoilerWe ain't toying for shit and she damn well knows this. We've already established that Arawn, past and present, is one paranoid mofo but he also values others over himself. He seeks any and all potential advantages while minimizing the cost of obtaining them to his own allies. He'll do that if he has to, but he'll always feel bad about it and the potential advantage was worth the risk logically.Damn, starting to realize why Gardy actually agreed to a fusion and trusted us so hard (and, by extension, why it succeeded until that damned vamp ruined everything). We really have chosen every option he'd get. Not perhaps agree with, but "get" from his perspective. The whole lust for exotic bits was/is alien to him arguably but hey, organics. He got a BestFather.exe subroutine in the event of us getting the ultimate happy ending right?
>>3920198Good old paranoid Arawn, yeah I think a few things can be arranged in the opening with her looks depending on how we proceed. for now it's still a threeway choice.Arawn and Gardy being of such close mind was honestly a coincidence; you guys shaped our elf thoroughly. I think he had a much more profound effect on Arawn personality than people realize. Sure, past Arawn was protective, but he still had quite a few difference compared to who he is now...
>>3920207Ya mean two way, because I ain't gonna back opening that letter without more info. Can Zhu tell us what she sees? Can we be her battery and see how that changes her perception?He was, is, and always will be, the bestest buddy ever. People reflect those they admire, owe, befriend, etc. Gardy was essentially what we always wished to be. A sanctuary, a small piece of peace for those we held most dear, the shining light in the darkest moments of their existence, the cure to all their ills...
>>3920229Then I take it you vote for discussing this church sneaking mission with Zhu instead of looking for Shereen?As for what Zhu see; nothing special, just a letter. Being a battery is something that will need to happen later, as another vote.
>>3920232Hit enter too soon.Too bad he's away, apparantly stuck in the Red World...
>>3920233Stuck but alive, and that's all we need him to be. Dude survived centuries within the Throne before finding us, Red World's a cakewalk by comparison.What's not a cakewalk is finding Us with Bad Fluffy doing all she can to ensure he does not. After all, if we do manage to re-fuse with him that ends pretty much all her "extra" fun. No more deals without him ensuring she gets just that and nothing more, no more fun times watching us fail melee checks at less than a 5 percent likelihood, etc...I say it once and I say it again, of all the things I miss, bestest buddy is what I miss most of all right now. Give him the award for most entertaining automaton for 2019...
>>3920247Now now, Ama did nothing wrong.
>>3920249Oh no, she did all and everything wrong! She is sin incarnate, the embodiment of all the evils of this world, the conduit for all eldritch horrors from beyond the veil, the princess of excess. etc...No wonder a Khornate Champion became our lover...
>>3920265Now now, she's much more reasonable than some Khornate failure. Zhu is at least able to count past thirty. Also for some reason I've been looking back into my old quest and I've gotten some feelings to start something again... All in due time though, Ama game must go on.
>>3920274>when a QM calls his own character a failureJust end me already
>>3920336Depends on what ya mean. Maybe you were going for a different reaction from us silly GM, you should no better than to trust players to be anything other than creatures of chaos. Maybe it's because, as she said, she's a static gal (makes sense, her sword's powered by memories so any form of regular use will prevent character development).Though it really seems like you consider full bore "BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD" types to be failures and Zhu isn't that fargone and thus isn't a "failure" like they are. She still has her reason intact, won't kill allies if she fails a roll, and can form emotional attachments to people (twisted though they may be). Still, if Zhu gets hit by a wave of corruption or something pic related is my bet on the result.
>>3920427Insofar as the voting goes, now that I've thought on it, we hash it all out with Zhu. We need to get a private room first to alter our appearances a bit and I don't want to discuss all we want to discuss with her in the open.The walls have ears, and I fully expect the other Suns to have noticed Shereen's hitherto unprecedented behavior. Should we try to search for her actively right now we'd both be lead on a wild goose chase if for no other reason than it'd amuse both them and Ama (whom they are probably in allegiance with though perhaps unknowingly).Worst comes to worse it is as I've said, an old, decrepit, soul corrupted nun's word against the emissary of a "god" and his most recent associate. Unlike us I bet Zhu's a great liar. Provided lying leads to outcomes pleasing to herself.As an aside, we might try to use our collar to issue a distress call if we get cornered. It works on the soul level so perhaps if we channel our unease into it it'll get Shereen to come running as her new moon's in danger most serious!
>>3921717Alright, I can operate that way. Not too sure when the next thread will start, keep an eye on twitter. It'll either be this weekend or the end of next week.