In a certain tower, in a certain graveyard, on an unassuming hill in a land far away, it had been quite the busy week for all of the inhabitants that dwelled within. Mama sewing with many a hiss at a carelessly pricked thumb, Vivi hanging decorations in a way uniquely suited to her unique avian flare: even some of its visitors had fallen under the curse of industry as Cici’s grandfather continued working long hours into the day and night, the older man relentlessly bouncing from one task to the other in preparation for his departure. Even Uncle Yesh, who often spent more time underground than above it had taken to the fresh air, small clawed hands cleaning tombstones and cobbles with reverent fervor, his skeletal aids and a zealous bear cub at his side. Such was the effect as the mid-summer Hallow’s Eve drew near, excitement permeating the air as the Gorgon family tried to ready themselves for the impending festivities. And perhaps none were more caught up in that giddy wave than the youngest of the household, our miniature gorgoness bouncing with anticipation as the time of the festival drew ever closer, a time to meet new faces and revisit old ones amidst food, games, and music. However, where have the voices been guiding the young lass to spend the last several days of her time?> Write-in
>>795627Welcome to Gorgon Child Quest! Where-in you take up the role of a magical talking artifact being wielded by a young gorgon girl named Cici. Living out of the steadily improving remains of a once great dungeon, the game will focus on exploration, character interaction, and learning as the voices of the players within the amulet help guide her along. I may also include a magic system down the line depending on how things go, but we'll see what the future holds.For news about quest updates, my twitter can be found here: https://twitter.com/bananon_QMAnd the archive can presently be found here: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?searchall=gorgon+child
>>795627Making a coustume. Preferably one with silly hats for the headsneks.
>>795667Yes. A different hat for each one.
>>795667This. Need lots of little hats.
>>795627Gotta make that costume.Huh. What should the costume be?Going as a human, the worst monster that there is, might be a little too cliche.
>>795926>>795791>>795737>>795667>>795627[“I’ll try my best!”]That’s the promise Cici had made at the insistence of the voices before asking her Mama if she could help sto ew the costumes for the coming event. Naturally, that was met with a bit of skepticism if not outright concern on the older woman’s part, but predictably she could only hold out so long before giving in to those pleading eyes.The results were, unfortunately, seemingly pre-ordained by genetics, as it soon after became mother and daughter sitting across from each other, echoing each other’s gentle hisses as they tried to make sleeves and scarves out of whole cloth. Finally, it seems that Vivi takes notice.“So… uh, whatcha doing there squirt?”“I…I’m-” Cici pauses as she puts more pressure on the needle, trying to get it through the impenetrable fabric, grunting before letting out an: “Eep! I’m helpin’ Mama make the costumes… but I’m not very good…”“Aww, it’s okay lil’ sis,” Vivi promises, giving the girl a pat. “How about I show you how to make something else instead and I’ll help out here?”After Cici reluctantly agrees, Vivi is soon bringing out a few scraps of paper in various colors and setting them on the table in front of her.“Alright… Now all we have to do is…” She takes a marker in her talons and begins scribbling odd shapes on her canvas. “And then…” With her claws, she then carefully runs a line around the paper, sawing it free of its surrounding prison before setting it aside and grabbing glue with her other talon. One gentle dab and a tender roll later, she runs another ring of glue around the inner part of a donut shaped piece and seats her makeshift cone on top of it.“Ta-da!” she announces proudly, gesturing to her masterpiece as Cici cocks her head.“What’s that?”“It’s a wizard hat!” Vivi explains. “You know, for your snakes.”Cici’s face brightens up like the sun, and it isn’t long before she’s earnestly down on the floor, cutting and pasting together various colorful cone hats for her hair, the small snakes accepting their crowns with indifference before inevitably wiggling and letting them fall to the floor.“Hmm…”Ribbons come out and hats stay on, the snakes all soon fashionably adorned in a cavalcade of rainbow colored caps. And with Vivi’s skillful talons tucking away the threads, it seems the rest of the costume making is well underway.Is there anything else, the voices would like to direct Cici to do before the big night?> Write-in
>>795949We did tell Brad that Cici should train her body as well as her mind.So reading the dictionary to expand her vocabulary, and some physical conditioning disguised as games and races.https://youtu.be/acEJbFBn77g
>>795949Well, if the Snakes are wizards, would that make Cici a ...Tower? Wizards live in towers right?
>>795987She should dress as a tower. A tower topped with serpentine wizards.
>>795949>>795985>>795987As per the usual, Cici’s mornings have been filled with light reading, and the day has been filled with plenty of light labor to work up a seat. Still, with little else to do right now, Cici makes her way down to the bathroom where Grampa Brad is still knee deep in the floor, magical circles filled with bronze now tracing an intricate pattern throughout the basin.“Hi, Grampa,” Cici says, raising her snakes proudly to show off her handiwork. “Lookit! The voices say I’m a mage tower, now!”“Well, now, would you fancy that?” the old man chuckles, pulling himself up off the floor and making his way over to Cici. “Your battlements are fierce, you’ve a properly attired retinue at your disposal. In all, I’d say you only lack a few gargoyles to really complete the aesthetic. Of course, I can do without them if it means a decided lack of chronic explosions.”“What?”“Oh, nothing dear. Let’s simply say that many apprentices leap before they look, and all the dwarven architects in the world could never plan for half of what they get up to in a weekend. Honestly, it’s a miracle half the towers on this continent are still standing. Either way, I’d say that this will make a fine addition to your outfit for this Hallow’s Eve. Do try to be safe, though, won’t you?”“I promise,” Cici replies, vaguely distracted at the site of Archer padding softly into the room. “I wish you’d come with us though…”“My dear, I fear that I’ve never been much of one for parties,” he laughs. “And I very much doubt you’d like having an old man slowing you down.”“But I would…” Cici complains.“Just ask your mother to bring me some of the fairground food if you would. She’ll likely know what I prefer still. And if there’s anything I can do for you, simply let me know.”> Write-in
>>796272"Wait, if Cici goes as a wizard tower, will Grandpa Wizard need to stand on top of her or something?"
>>796288Oh, Grampa's right! We gotta figure out how to get you some gargoyles, Cici.Getting stone ones is probably too difficult; maybe you can carve ones from wood?Or maybe make paper ones?Your mother and Vivi might be able to help.
>>796288Get you mom and see if you can go.
>>796288>>796294>>796335>>796340“I think I’ll be okay, Grampa. Thanks though!”“Of course, dear, and I’ll see if I can’t have a warm bath prepared for you by this evening. As things stand, I think I’m almost done.”“Brrk?” comes a gentle interjection, something like a cough from Archer as one set of her talons clacks against the basin.“What do you mean, backwards?” Brad questions, moving over to examine the area. “Blast it all! I’m getting downright geriatric, aren’t I? Well, I suppose we’ll make that tomorrow evening then…”[“He seems like he needs time to himself. Also, don’t you remember? We promised Katie we were gonna be a witch, a spooky witch. Mama’s been working on the costume and everything.”]Speaking of which, Cici returns to find progress on the rest of her ensemble well underway, the harpy delicately snipping a pair of threads between her talons before examining what is very clearly a shirt in Cici’s size against the light.“It seems you have quite a flare for this sort of thing,” Mama compliments as she continues to struggle with her pile of fabric. “Did your mother teach you?”“Dad actually…” Vivi says with a bit of a blush. “I kept ripping my blouses… Where did you learn?”“Hehehe- ow!” Mama accidentally jabs herself again. “Well, I suppose you could say no one, really. Mother was a Seer, more concerned with the threads of fate than the kind that make clothing. My background was more… military, you could say. So that wasn’t much help either. You just tend to pick up a thing here or there as you get older.”“Well, the important thing is just not to force it, and to be careful when placing your seam. Here, let me help…”And so, Vivi helped Mama through the rest of the evening, putting thread to cloth right until bedtime so that everything was almost in order for the next day. All the while, Cici settled for just paying close attention, learning everything she could and practicing on the side until the three finally took to bed.
>>796575The nighttime dreams come fitfully to Cici’s over-excited mind in the twilight hours, her imagination running wild over all the things yet unseen and her consciousness twisting and roaming down those strange avenues she couldn’t quite explain that let her see things she instinctively knew to be true. Whatever those might have been on this particular evening, however, were lost in visions of candied apples and hay rides, spooky costumes and cheery music, all disappearing completely in morning light.With a yawn, they then went right back to work, straightening out loose-ends and checking fits, preparing for the night down to the last possible moment as dusk settled in and the sound of far-away music drifted to them over the tree tops. As Cici straightened her own hat and doubled checked that no tiny snake head was left unclad, it was clearly time.[“But what should we do first?”]> Write-in
>>796586Gotta find Katie, right?Oh, make sure Din-Din is fed?Check out the rides and attractions first; don't want to get on a ride with a full stomach, after all.
>>796661>>796600>>796586With an excited sigh, Cici turns around and takes stock of her spooktackular retinue, her Mama dressed much the same as her, with pointy wizard hat on her head and tiny bat wings on her back. Din-Din, meanwhile sports a tiny red and black cape, taking up the mantle of the fierce bunpire, and Vivi…. Well, Vivi said she was too old for dressing up, but she still wanted to come and have fun.“Mama, we should go find Katie first,” Cici insists as they begin making their way down that familiar road into town.“And we will, sweetling,” Mama promises. “We’re going to stop by the farm on our way, and she should be waiting for us there.”And so, with that simple promise, the trio make their way into the gathering dusk, Cici almost skipping down the dirt road all the way to Kate’s family farm, where it would seem a couple of masked monstrosities are already outside and waiting.[“Wow, some of them look super scary…”]As Cici approaches, getting a closer look, the twisted visage on some of the taller children’s masks become clear: one painted an alabaster white, heavily make-upped and plastered with an unsettling smile. Another looks like a pig, but with an unnatural mouth that speaks of grim rage. The last is just a featureless plane where a face should be, buried in the dark shadows toward the back of a hood.“Hi-ya girls,” greets a friendly voice from behind the last, the familiar face of Clyde the cat salesman peeking out from behind as one hand pulls the mask away. “Glad ya could make it.”“Y-yeah,” notes the little demon with Kate’s voice, gently scuffing the ground with one foot as her unmoving red face gives a spooky smile.“Cici!” the greeting from the other small girl is far warmer as Hannah waves excitedly, apparently dressed as some sort of cat with a purplish mane. “My parents said I could be ungrounded tonight!”“Yay! I’m so glad! So… um, what do you guys want to do first…?”“Well,” the pig boy pipes up with a husky voice. “The attractions are kinda the same each year. You’ve got yer apple bob, yer gourd carving, a couple o’ games o’ chance, and the hay ride when it gets a bit later.”“I heard we got a city slicker out this way, that sold Jacob an air rifle,” the female clown speaks. “They’re supposed to have a shooting range setup and everything!”“That’s gonna be great!” the pig boy cheers excitedly.“But yeah,” Clyde throws back in. “Plenty of stuff fer you girls to get up to. Just might steer clear of anything run by Oscar, and ye’ll be fine.”“Who?” Cici asks.“The red bearded dwarf that manages Mr. Martin’s store on occasion. He’s a real piece of work.”“Slippery as an eel, that one,” the girl agrees. [“He didn’t seem that bad, really, but at least we have the way over to decide what to do. There’s so much…”]> Write-in
>>796816Well, I think that we'll pick up from here tomorrow if that's alright with everyone. Apologies for the late start today, but as I've said, I've been fighting for every scrap of my personal time and it hasn't been terribly easy.
>>796816Might want to go with the apple-bobbing first; tie your snakes back and be careful that you don't get your costume too wet.Then you can grab some food while doing some of the things like gourd-carving. Games of chance sound fun, and the air rifle shooting range could be interesting.
>>796816Hmmm.Let's ask to explain exactly why the dwarf work is so bad. Then you should hug Hannah.
>>796816>Follow the kids advice and remember to be polite.
>>796816Ask them about apple bobbing. You might find it fun!
>>798282>>796972>>796969>>796906>>796879Well, it's just my luck. My computer decided to crap out today with some software I desperately need access to. That means I'll have to go elsewhere and then come back. Here's hoping that it takes less than three hours total.
>>799564Well, best laid plans of mice and men... I'll try to get some updates going shortly.
>>801183Are you still going to run tonight?
>>801183I'm sorry, anon. I might have one or two updates in me, but work just never seems to quit harassing me. Expect one shortly.
>>796816>>796906>>796969>>796972>>798282“But why is he so bad?” Cici asks innocently.“Ornery as an ox, with a mouth like a sailor and eyes like a fink: let’s just say he don’t get up to anything good too often,” Clyde explains. “Anyway, let’s not dwell on that and get you kids into town. Ain’t no sense wasting our time ‘round here.”With no objections forthcoming, the motley crew then continues on their way. Now double their original number, Hannah and Cici march happily down the road amidst the throng, their excitement seeming to grow in time with the sound of the rhythmic music on the horizon. Pipes pipe and drums drum seemingly always just beyond the next hill as its carried to them on the cool nighttime air. And the festive beat only continues to build in tempo and volume as they go, rising to a crescendo before, with a few innocuous steps, a sea of lights suddenly explodes outward before their appreciative eyes.As if by some peculiar magic, the town has been completely blanketed in the spirit of the season in the past few days: lanterns now hung from every eave and corner, banners and streamers forming a criss-crossed canopy over the bustling throng below. And quite the throng it is, masked faces and unnatural forms standing to hold casual conversation as the smaller forms giggle and dart about close to the ground, laughing with giddy delight.Everyone is so thoroughly engrossed with the festivities, in fact, that even the entrance of Cici’s mother doesn’t seem to cause the usual stir. People just seem to make way for one more monstrosity as she makes to pass, the children on her heels as she makes her way to Guyus’ bakery.
>>801779“Hi Uncle Guyus!” Cici calls happily.“And would ya fancy what we have here,” says the old man now dressed as a gorilla, giving a hardy guffaw at the assembled masses. “Spooks and sorceresses, and a couple of little rats.”“I’m a demon!” Kate shouts.“A-and I’m a manticore…” Hannah objects, pointing to her tail.“Ha! My mistake then! Anyway, the three of you look like ye’ve got ants in yer pants,” he says, turning to the eager, older children. “Here, help yourselves to the table and scram… and keep yerselves out of mischief tonight or I’ll hang ye from the belfry!”With nods and noncommittal mumbles, Clyde and friends are quick to snatch up a couple of pumpkin shaped treats and head off in the direction of steady popping noises, leaving the smaller girls and Cassandra to gaze around the square in wonder.Plates of treats and games abound, children tossing small bags at painted figures of ghouls with wide open mouths, adults chatting excitedly and giddily around a massive bowl of punch. The whole square is filled with life, save one spot where a singular man seems to have been given a wide berth. Bearded and bronzed, his performance quickly gives credence to that allowance as he puffs his cheeks and releases a gout of flame from the end of a torch, to the appreciative cheers of his audience. And not too far from that man, Cici spies her first game of choice for the night a trough where several children are excitedly dunking their heads into the water with arms behind their back.“Mama…” Cici indicates gently, pointing to the stall while tugging at her hem, and that’s all the initiative it takes to get the crew moving across the yard.[“It looks fun, but how do I play this?”]> Write-in
>>801793"You stick your head in the trough and try to grab an apple with your mouth. Wait your turn, and ask if you can use your headsnakes."
>>801793Watch the other kids; see how they have their hands behind their backs? Keep your hands like that, and you dunk your head to try to bite and apple and take it with you out of the water. Be careful of your head-snakes, though, Cici.
>>801793Well, first you gotta put your hands behind your back. Then you got to stick your face into the bucket and try to catch an apple with your teeth by biting into it. You might have an easier time with it because of your fangs, but getting an apple is still going to be quite hard.Also, try not to use your head snakes to help. That's cheating. And it also might make people get scared, too, but it's mostly because it's cheating.
>>801840>>801820>>801809>>801793[“Okay. I think I’ve got it. I might want to take off my hat though…”]With Hannah and Katie by her side, Cici soon finds herself stepping up to the metal basin, a fresh crop of apples falling in with a plunk as the amused looking older woman looks down at the tiny trio.“Katie, Hannah, I was expecting you earlier,” she clucks, “but I see you’ve brought a new friend with you.”“Hi, I’m Cici!” Cici introduces herself.“So you are, sweet heart,” she says with a smile. “Now, do you think you girls have got what it takes to catch an apple this year.”“I can try!” Cici says.“And I’ve grown lots since last year!” Katie insists.“Well, then, you know the rules, I’d reckon. Hands behind your back and try not to fall in, and if you can manage to fetch one in under a minute, I’ve got a special treat for you.”“Mama, could you hold my hat?” Cici asks, already removing it from her head.The older woman’s smile stays on her face, but a shudder clearly runs through her shoulders as Cici’s hair revels in the fresh air near her scalp.“Of course, sweetling. Just try not to hurt yourself.”“I won’t, Mama,” she promises, and then takes her place.“Alright,” the woman announces. “Then, on your mark. Get set. Go!”And like that, the other two girls’ chins go slamming into the water, Cici’s not far behind as they all rush to be the first to retrieve their treat. Of course, apple bobbing can be a bit trickier than it sounds at first, and Cici is quick to realize this as her first target promptly scoots away beneath the water. What’s more, as the other girls show by example, smaller mouths make getting a proper bite hold that much harder. Still, they hadn’t come all this way just to quit and the battle of child versus fruit only continues to escalate as the seconds tick by, water splashing more fiercely as the girls strive to get more than a mouthful of water on the next bite.Finally, with jaw muscles burning and eyes blinking away water, Cici has somewhat of an epiphany. Well, maybe not so much an epiphany as a sudden realization as an unfamiliar pop in her jaw suddenly sends her mouth swinging far wider than she’s accustomed to. Still, in the heat of the moment, all that matters is the apple, and with the sudden increase in span, Cici finally manages to snap it up, her fangs releasing sweet juice as she triumphantly lifts her head out of the water.“I di- ith!” she mumbles proudly around the fruit, struggling to dislodge it with her first pull before finally working it free. “Look Mama, I di- it! I di- it!”
>>801981Curiously, Mama looks less happy than shocked as she gazes at Cici’s triumphant smile, one that comes with the taste of metal in Cici’s mind before she looks down to spy something unfamiliar left behind in the red fruit’s surface: a white vaguely triangular shape that it takes a long moment to realize is one of her teeth.[“Gah!”]> Write-in
>>801986Take it easy, Cici. You've just lost a baby tooth, (probably). It'll grow back in due time, dear.For now, though, grab a napkin and try to staunch the blood.
>>801986Hopefully we can regrow that, also it'll make a nice necklace
>>801986Now, don't worry too much, Cici.Human children lose their child teeth as they get older, and you likely got that from your father.Though you should ask for a clean cloth or something to stop the bleeding.And a word of warning: no hard candies or foods! Stick to the soft stuff until the new tooth grows.
>>802036>>802029>>802026>>801986[“I don’t know if I wanna make a necklace out of my tooth… That sounds weird.”]Before Cici can even ask for a napkin though, Mama is pulling one out of her pocket and bending down to eye level.“Now Cici, this should be fine. You simply lost a baby tooth is all. It’ll grow back.”Mama seems more worried than Cici is over all of this, her voice even a little shaky.“I know, Mama,” she tries to say reassuringly. “The voices said so, too.”“Voices?” the booth lady asks, but then shakes her head. “On second thought, figure it’s best I don’t ask, but… well, guessing you’ll be passing on the prize then.”“A prize?” Cici asks, which is a little hard with Mama dabbing blood off her chin.“Yeah. The prize was going to be a caramel apple… Then again, might not do anymore harm at this point.”“Hmm…” Cici murmurs, as her mother begins swabbing at her gums. “That might not be a good idea for me, but Hannah and Katie would probably want some.”“Are you sure you don’t mind?” Hannah asks.“I’m sure,” Cici assures her. “An’ I can feed Din-Din the rest of the apple when we get home.”“Well, thanks,” Katie says. “Though we might need to start calling you snaggletooth.”“Snaggletooth the Witch?” Cici wonders, then laughs. “That’s kinda a funny name.”“Keep talking like that, and I’ll be having a talk with yer mom,” the older woman grumbles to Kate quietly, reaching somewhere in the back of her stall before producing a large, brown mass on a stick with nuts dug into its side. With a knife, she then neatly divides it in two to show the apple hiding inside. “Now, you two, eat up, and keep out of trouble, and if there’s anything I can do for you ma’am, just let me know.”“I think we’ll be alright,” Mama insists, Cici now nursing her own wound with the towel.“Mhm! I’ll be fine,” she promises.[“What should we do next, voices?”]> Write-in
>>802115I wonder if cotton candy has been invented here yet.That's soft enough that Cici could eat it without problems.I hear that there was gourd-carving.I don't know about you, Cici, but I like carving gourds and squashes. Though I'm all about the accuracy and cleanness of a cut rather than the design.
>>802115Hmm... Well, 4chan dying seems to have chased people off. And since this is a sort of open-ended question, I'll leave it open until tomorrow. Dear god, I hesitate to make promises at this point given the past two days, but I really hope I can start early afternoon this time.
>>802256Also, you said you only had one or two updates in you, so people probably assumed that this was the last update for the night and went to sleep.
>>802256Perhaps we can go and try to find the shooting range? They often have fun prizes, and you can see how good you are at it!
>>802115Im sure theres some games around that dont involve your mouth. Look for something thats giving away toys or something.
>>802115Trick or treat?
>>802600>>802540>>802500>>802285>>802169I am free! And back to writing.
>>803453I still vote that Cici tries out how she is at the shooting range. However, the decision is still Cici's.What do you want to try Cici?
>>803471>>802600>>802540>>802500>>802285>>802169>>802115[“I don’t know about cotton candy, but it sounds delicious! I’ll be sure to ask Uncle Guyus later.”]“What do you guys want to do, next?” Cici asks, turning to the other girls for a tie breaker.“Pumpkin carving takes a little while,” Hannah notes. “So, we may want to do that first.”“Don’t want to get sleepy and cut ourselves,” Kate agrees.And so, with that settled, the girls are swiftly on their way to a long table filled to the brim with gourds, child and adult alike slashing away with various degrees of artistry to make their visions a reality.“Be careful now, sweetling,” Mama begs, picking a few choice implements on the girl’s behalf before hovering nervously behind.“Promise,” Cici affirms, then looking to the other girls on how to start.“First you’ve gotta draw a drawing,” Hannah says, grabbing some paper from a pile and beginning to carefully sketch out some sort of face. “Then you grab a couple of pins, and stick it to the pumpkin. That way you know where to cut.”“My, you’re very good at this,” Mama compliments, making the girl blush.“Nina’s the good one… I just know a little…”Still, as the moments tick on into minutes, Hannah’s artistry clearly proves the superior between the three girls, her distorted design pegged beautifully to her rind while the other girls are still sketching and resketching their rough drafts. She chooses to stop there in favor of doubling back to help a little help, and with a few extra pointers, Cici does eventually manage to catch up. Meanwhile Kate, the young girl who had been keeping very much to herself, seems to elect to forgo the drawing altogether and just picks up a knife.So comes the part Mama was no doubt dreading as the fledgling trio arm themselves against their opponents, Hannah going in for light surface cuts at first even as Katie begins slashing at hers with abandon. Somewhere in the middle sits Cici, the girl hardly having ever used a knife not helping her in the least with this task as she tries to figure out how to keep the pressure right and satisfying Mama’s nervous glances.Thankfully, no further blood was shed on this occasion, the three pairs of hands stained orange and yellow instead of red as the three unveil their masterpieces: Hannah’s with its intelligent eyes and neat smile, Cici’s with its eyebrows from where she accidentally cut in the wrong spot, and Katie’s, the most menacing of the three. Jagged and with a cruel smile that reflects what had been bestowed upon it, it’s thin eyes are truly menacing, something the girl takes great pride in as the three of the them set their completed pieces in a row with the dozen or so others.
>>803659One round of washed hands later, followed up with a handful of dried pumpkin seeds from a gracious host, and the girls are happily chewing and chatting their way across the yard in the direction of the popping sounds still ringing through the air.Soon intersticed with a rhythmic metallic ping as the sound of the general festivities falls behind, Cici and friends find the booth down a back alley where apparently many games have already been set up. Shooting, throwing, tests of strength, all of them put on a display to tantalize would be customers, boasting prizes for highest scores and only a modest entry fee Mama promises won’t be a problem.Unfortunately, the titular draw to this corner of the market still has a healthy audience, a small mass of older kids working through their modest coin as they gun to outclass each other. Seems it’ll be a bit of a wait if Cici wants to get a turn in, though not an unbearable one. If not that, of course, there are plenty of other things to check out. Whether it’s the fortune teller’s hut in a thrown up tent to the side, the strong man’s competition featuring a sword in a rock and the hammer swing, or the milk bottle gallery boasting some truly fantastical prizes run by a certain red-bearded dwarf, there’s plenty to see if she has the mind.[“I don’t mind waiting.”]> Write-in
>>803667Go see the dwarf guy, don't pull his beard though.
>>803667Why don't you go try talking to the dwarf, and after that, visiting the fortune teller? Both of them seem to know a lot (at least in my experience).
>>803714>>803677>>803667“Maybe we can come back when the line is shorter…” Cici says, beginning to wander a bit further down the street, and toward Oscar’s shop. “Hi Mr. Oscar!”“Ah, bloody…” the expletive quickly dies into an indecipherable murmur as the dwarf catches sight of Cici’s mother slithering in the background. “And how would you ladies be on this fine evenin’?”“We’re well. Thank you,” Mama says, looking around the thrown up stall. “I wouldn’t have taken you to get into the festive spirit though.”“Ah what’re ya talkin’ ‘bout?” the dwarf snorts. “I love the holidays. ‘S a great chance to do some good for the community. Ya know, keep the kids outta trouble, earn some extra cash to cover my own expenses. Guarantee ya won’t find finer prizes anywhere else in this here festival up fer grabs.”And the dwarf was almost certainly not lying on that one. Giant stuffed animals, tantalizing treats, and even some little pets in bowls: his shop was very well equipped.“I wanna play!” Hannah pipes up.“So do I!” Katie adds.“I could give it a shot,” Vivi throws in.“Me too…” Cici finishes.[“Do you guys have any advice?”]> Write-in
>>803845Cici, watch the others first. I think this dwarf may have stacked the deck of this game in his favour.That's adult talk for cheating.
>>803873OH, you think?When we were specifically warned that the dwarf cheats by the older kids in this very thread?Of course he's cheating, and we shouldn't have suggested coming here.
>>803845Let the other girls go first, and look for the bottle that stays up after getting hit.That's the one that's got glue or magnets keeping it stuck to the board. You need to aim for that one with all your strength.
>>803845The bottles are probably glued so now this game has a new goal: try to get the balls to bounce if the suck bottles and hit the dwarf in the head.
>>803908Remember how we're in character when we're talking to Cici? Yeah. Was talking to the future archmage bro.
>>803960She already figured out that he's a cheat from what Clyde and the other kids were saying. You're treating Cici like she's mentally deficient and talking down to her, even as she acknowledged the warnings from Clyde about Oscar.
>>803997 >>803960>>803948 >>803920>>803908 >>803873>>803845["It'll be alright. No need to argue."]The boldest among the lot, or at least the pushiest, Kate ends up first in line to try her hand.“Alright. Alright,” the dwarf tuts. “Ye’ve probably got the rules down, but here’s it again fer those of ya who may have forgot. Ya got these here three balls to throw, and with ‘em, ya gotta knock down all the milk bottles stacked up right over there. No shakin’ the booth. No cryin’ if ya don’t win. Simple as that.“‘S just a pence one way or the other. Also, if ya manage to get ‘em all down ye can go fer double or nothin’ on round two. Simple enough for ya?”A chorus of bobbing heads acquiesce, before with a jerk and a defiant roar, Kate sends her first ball screeching into the pile of bottles dead center. The sound of clinking glass quickly follows as the lot of them go down, Kate cheering herself on as much as the others as she readies her next pitch. One more throw, and three more bottles go toppling down.“You’re really good at this, Katie,” Cici compliments, and the other girl just scoffs.“Yep, and in a second, one of those fish is mine.”And so with an overly dramatic lean back, Kate winds up her final pitch, her show-boding and theatrics somehow not impeding her aim in the least as either by skill or blind luck, she hits the final trio dead center. Bottles rattle and clatter, the ball hits the back of the stand, and it seems all that’s left is to collect her fish. However, as the chaos settles, one bottle remains standing.“Darn it! I was so close!” she fumes, but the dwarf just laughs.“Sure ya were lass. Reckon next time, ye’ll have it too. Gotta wait yer turn though. Right then, next up is the feathered lass.”Cici isn’t sure if her eyes tricked her, but as she plays it back again and again in her head, she’s sure that ball should have sent that bottle flying. Maybe he really was cheating, but without any further evidence, Cici just keeps an eye on that one bottle, intent to see if it moves weirdly again. Unfortunately, Vivi doesn’t even manage to get that far as her foot-thrown pitches all fly wildly about, the last one almost pegging the dwarf in the head before she finally runs out of tries.That just leaves Hannah before Cici, and to her credit, she gives it an honest try. After missing her first throw entirely, she stays calm and clips a couple of bottles on her second throw, finally seeming to get a good, if weak toss in at the bottom where the questionable bottle lurks with her last. Unfortunately, it bounces off rather than plowing through, the bottles wobbling back and forth.“Alright, only one left then,” Oscar says, after once more resetting the booth. “Best of luck, lass.”
>>804054Cici takes a deep breath and concentrates on her throw, aiming at the one peculiar bottle. If she could just knock that one down…. Fortunately, for Cici, a life in the woods had its advantages, and for a girl with few other toys, she had on more than one occasion taken to chucking stones, usually skipping them along the river until they fell under.So it is that with a solid thunk, she lands her first pitch dead-center on the bottle, the milk container sliding back as the remainder of the bottles balanced on top of it give way and clatter to the ground. That container, however, still stands tall, if close to the edge.“I think you’re cheating,” Cici says honestly, as she points to that one.“Pha,” the dwarf objects. “Ain’t nothin’ wrong with these bottles. Bought ‘em from the farm myself mornin’ before last. Now quit yer belly aching and play it through.”A few bottles remain on the table, a stack of three toward the front with the odd bottle slid toward the back.> Write-in
>>804057You still have two throws right? Try knock the cheaty one off of the table with one throw and knock the rest over with the other.Then tell him he should be more careful because next time he offends a witch he might just find all his hair falling out. Then cackle
>>804057Alright, nothing for it. Take down the one intact pile with one throw. Use all your strength on the last throw one the glued bottle. I don't suppose you could throw a ball to take down the plank that the bottle is resting on. He did say you can't attack the booth.
>>804143>>804362>>804057Mama seems to have something to say to the dwarf’s logic on that, but Cici is already reaching for another ball. With a deep breath out, she carefully lines up her shot, tongue idly sticking through the newly formed gap between her teeth and through her lips as she squints at the target. Another breath, the wind-up, and with all the strength her thing arms can muster, she manages to slam another ball into the top of the white milk bottle, the ball bouncing back at the impact rather than plowing through, but the bottle finally going down with a heavy, distinctly non-empty sound as it rolls off the table.“You can throw the last one, if you want to Katie,” Cici offers, handing over the last ball. “You didn’t get your fish.”“Now wait just a second…”But the ball is already crashing through the remaining bottles and sending them over the edge of the table, leaving nothing but a level surface.“I want one of the fish,” Katie declares, and the dwarf simply shrugs in surrender.“Alright, alright. Here ya go,” Oscar sighs, handing her the bowl, the occupant there-in swimming around tempestuously at its change of ownership and momentum.“Now as ya can see,” the dwarf goes on to say. “The game’s perfectly legitimate. Just takes a bit o’ elbow grease, is all. Now any of you girls looking to go for seconds?”“I think I might be up for a go myself,” Mama says, a strange light in her eyes as she grips one hand hard enough to make her knuckles pop.The dwarf, for his part, seems somewhat troubled by this turn of events.“Well, it’s a crown on adults, but knock yerself out,” Oscar concedes, stooping to recover the props and set them back where belong.The bottles go up, and: 1, 2, 3. In rapid fire, they far more quickly go sailing right back off the table, the balls making a sharp whistling noise from the time they leave Mama’s hand to when they make contact with concussive force.“Again,” she declares, putting another coin on the table.
>>804412Several minutes later, there is a very flustered dwarf with a far less luxurious set of prizes behind the counter than he had started with. Instead those rest in the hands of the girls: a large chocolate bar for Hannah, a shiny necklace for Vivi, an overstuffed bear for Cici, and a small pile of candy crammed into a bag.“Have a wonderful evening,” the dwarf murmurs, sighing as he pulls out an abacus and begins rapidly scribbling on a pad of paper he has off to the side.“Where-to next, sweetling?” Mama asks, seemingly having regained her composure.It looks like the line around the shooting range has died down.> Write-in
>>804417Say thanks to the nice dwarf lady for all the prizes.Then go shoot some stuff. If the human girls do poorly tell them that they need more practise if they want to be monster hunters.Also, did you hatch from an egg?
>>804485Don't think you need to say allll that.Can go ahead and try the shooting, though.
>>804417Let's check out the shooting gallery.And ignore >>804485 comment about the dwarf.Obviously they can't tell the difference between a man and a woman. Completely blind, that voice.
>>804417Time to learn gun safety!1: Never ever point the gun at people. Not even for an instant. If you need to turn, point the gun at the ground while you turn. 2: Only touch the trigger to shoot. 3: If something goes wrong and the gun doesn't work, don't try to fix it yourself; give it to somebody who knows how to fix it.
>>804582In addition, always announce when you are about to fire if you are doing it by yourself. But if you are doing it with other people, there will often be a person in charge who will tell you when you can and cannot shoot.And above all else, if someone moves in front of you while you have a gun, immeadiately stop shooting, unload the gun, and put it down before you get the person in charge to move the person in the way to a safer place.
>>804696While I agree with unloading for trained operatiors, Cici won't have the first hint of a clue how to unload. It's better she just lower the gun and wait than attempt something she doesn't know how to do.
>>804705That is a fair point. In which case, I propose that Cici should ask teh booth operator on the safe way to handle that particular gun.As a note Cici, there are many different types of guns, and each of them has its own unique ways of handling them. They are always dangerous, so you always need to be careful when using them. Just like with fire.
>>804719Excuse me, *the booth operator
>>804580>>804541>>804485[“Mama says that babies grow in their mama’s bellies until they are big enough to come out. Also, I don’t think he’s a lady…Though that does raise a question.”]“Mama?” Cici asks as they walk back to the firing range.“Yes, sweetling?”“Do girl dwarves grow beards?”“I…” She kind of stumbles on that one for a moment. “Well, I believe some of them do. That is if Helga wasn’t pulling my leg…”“Who?”“One of Mama’s friends. Now then, how much per shot, sir?”“For you ma’am, first one’s on the house. Five for a small prize. Ten for a large. Get all of ‘em, and I’ll give you somethin’ special. Hehe. Andrew, one apple crate for the little lady out front, if you would.”A man emerges at the prompt from behind the scenery, an array of pastel ducks and deer set against a grass like background.“Ere you go little lady,” he says in a gruff voice. “Mind your step and have fun.”“Thank you, mister.”-->>804582>>804696>>804705>>804719And so, with a quick step, Cici gains an additional foot in height, a welcome boon as it allows her to properly aim over the high counter. Silently, she takes note of your advice, keeping everything in mind as she’s handed the gun.“Now, then,” the mustachioed proprietor says, “just aim down the sights and try to line up what you want to shoot in front of them. From there, pull the trigger, and then all you’ve gotta do is pull the loop out and forward, then pull it back. That’s what you call a pump action rifle.”He demonstrates once or twice, depressing the trigger and letting the small pellets fly through the air to collide with a satisfying ping against the target.“Now, let me get off the range, and then you can fire away, honey. Just keep that thing pointed downrange the whole time. Don’t go swinging it back or pointing it at people.”“Kay,” Cici nods.With all that settled, Cici takes aim, letting out a breath as she tries to aim the gun where it’s supposed to go and fires. Having never held such a thing before though, her aim is very decidedly off, bouncing off the side of the booth rather than against a target.“Hmm…”It takes several more tries and some gentle prodding from the instructor for Cici to really start landing any shots of her own, but as she gets a bit more familiar, she feels like something’s about to click. Still, at that point, the man calls time, and she courteously passes it off to the other girls.[“That was fun, but kinda weird.”]> Write-in
>>804759Cici, have you ever used a bow or crossbow? If you enjoyed shooting with the gun, you may enjoy practicing with those as well.
>>804759Oh, maybe now would be a good time for a second try for everyone, Cici. The first time to get accustomed to the gun, and now you can try for real.I wonder if the vision from your snakes helps with spatial awareness at an unconscious level.Or maybe your Seer bloodline gives you a moment of pre-cognition so that your shots are more accurate.Oh, and one more thing, Cici. You have to learn to breath properly.Inhale, stop your breath when you're about to shoot, and squeeze the trigger slowly. The shot should almost come as a surprise.
>>804759Yeah, Cici, maybe you should ask your mother about teaching you archery. You might have a knack for it. Heck, see if your friends would like to learn too.
>>804759Don't listen to those losers. Bows and guns are for non-wizards. You could destroy that while both with a decent fireball.
>>804821You inhale and hold before shooting? I have always had more success with exhaling.
>>804876Hold if I'm trying to shoot more than one target under a time limit. Yeah, the exhaling is more accurate, but I don't know if we can line up each shot properly.
>>804873Psh, look at this nerdlinger here, I bet you can't even channel your magics into your arrows, and just chuck fireballs like you're some kind of shit-slinging troglodyte.OH cr-yeah. Cici, that's a bad word. Don't do what I did right there, that's bad manners.Even if it's true.
>>804970> carrying around unnecessary weapons like a pack horse> wasting time tending to said weapons when you could be gitting gud
>>805053Are we actually to make a child be party to the argument about weapons vs magic? Does that sound like a fun argument to have when you don't have a stake in either side?With sufficient training she could master weapons, with sufficient training she could master magic and with sufficient training she could master both.
>>804793>>804821>>804853>>804933[“Mama goes hunting with her bow and arrow lots. It’s really hard to pull back, though, so I don’t know if I’m strong enough to learn… Still, I do want to try shooting again.”]>>804970[“Also, don’t worry. I won’t tell Mama.”]And so, Cici waits patiently, cheering on the others as they had done for her as Katie and Hannah do their dead level best to down the ducks. Vivi, after taking a look at her talons and then to the fine trigger, had simply excused herself altogether, not that that put her far behind the others.It would seem, unfortunately, that gun luck was not amongst them as they continue to plink against hay and background, and ever so scarcely the occasional duck. However, come the end, no one has earned a prize.“I have to admit,” Mama says, putting down a few more coins after offering to buy the girls another round. “Guns were always a bit of a mystery to me. These are quiet enough, of course, but as for the larger caliber ones, it only takes one shot to scare everything for three miles around back into their burrows.”“Haha, ma’am, guess I had it right when I pegged you for a traditionalist,” the man comments with an amused smile.“A tad…”“Well, there isn’t exactly any shame in it, but you’ve gotta consider the advantages too for the normal folks. Bullets fly truer than an arrow, with half the training, and a third the muscle. Why, with a properly scoped and barreled rifle, you could still be out of earshot of that three miles, if you had a mind.”“That’s a little much to swallow.”“Hehe. The times, they are a changin’, but no need to worry about me. I just cut hair. Name’s Jacob by the way.”He extends a friendly hand.“Cassandra.”“And I’m Cici!”“Don’t imagine I’ll see you in my shop often, but it’s nice to shoot the breeze on an evening like this.”
>>805139>>805102>>805053["Uncle Gal and Mama use bows and weapons. And Grampa uses spells. I think they're both pretty neat."]“Anyhow, don’t let me hold you up, sweet heart! Give her another go!”And so Cici returns to the apple crate, now balanced on the dilemma of “to breathe or not to breathe” as she attempts to center her sight. Of course, one thing that escapes many people is just how gorgons tend to see the world. Contrary to popular belief, the eyes and heads that dangle about their humanoid face are not entirely vestigial but actually feed their perceptions into their host’s environmental awareness. Thus it is, that any monster hunter worth their salt will tell you that a medusa is one of the hardest beasts to sneak up on in a fight.It also contributes to another, little understood fact: namely why intelligent gorgons tend to opt for using bows rather than entering physical combat. Clearly as a serpent, their large body would offer them some advantages in a straight up brawl, but disregarding the general predisposition of most beings to avoid bodily harm, it is also because their compound sight provides them a unique advantage at range.Cici, of course, doesn’t know any of this. Even as her snakes flock around the barrel and try to sniff out every angle thereabouts as she lines up her shot, all she really knows is that the pointy bit on the end needs to line up with the thing she’s trying to shoot. However, with a little focus and a little time, the various pictures seem to overlap, giving Cici a very moderate advantage as she goes in for a much better second round.*Ping* goes the last pellet.“And that’s ten,” the man chuckles. “But I don’t know what I should offer you. I’d normally offer a free chop at the shop, but well… And it looks like you might have bitten off more sweets than you can chew tonight already… Hmmm… If you can think of anything, let me know. Now, how about we let these other girls get a turn in.”Naturally, the second time around offers improvements for everyone involved, but Cici is the only one walking away with a major prize. Still, a stack of sweet mint candies and a couple of lollipops is nothing to scoff at. And so, happily munching away, the band hunts for their next activity, though as Cici gazes at the moon hanging high in the sky, it seems to be getting late.> Write-in
>>805153Cider!They gotta have cider! Preferably warm
>>805153Oh yes, warm cider! That's good.Maybe everyone can get a mug on the way to the fortune-teller's booth?Haha! Time to scare another singleton with the full force and fury of a thousand neural data links, boys!
>>805176>>8051861. Is non-alcoholic cider a thing here? 2. Scaring people isn't very nice.>>805153Perhaps we should ask the others what they want to do?
>>805153>>805186I agree. Warm apple cider sounds good, and if I remember correctly, Cici did mention an interest in the fortune teller.If you didn't, please let us know Cici, most of us just want to help you do what you want to do.>>805202Non-alcoholic cider should be a thing, as it is made using apples that you eat, which has been shown to us.
>>805217I know it is a thing that can be made I'm just not sure if it is a thing that is made here.
>>805231Oh, it is actually quite easy. I work for a company that owns a cider mill and have gone on a tour. Very informative, and relatively simple in smaller batches.
>>805153>>805176>>805186>>805202>>805217“Maybe Din-Din will need a haircut at some point,” Cici suggests, picking the lounging bunny off of her mother’s coils and holding him to her chest.“Well, I’ve ceded to stranger requests,” Jacob admits. “Tell you what, if you want to bring him by at some point, I’ll see what I can do.”“Okay. Until then, have a nice night!”“I will. Now, you all take care!”And once more, the group wanders off into the night, a bit of a shudder running through Cici’s shoulders as a cross-wind sends a chill up her arm.“The girls up north said a cold front was going to be coming in,” Vivi comments as she likewise trembles, putting a wing around Cici and Din-Din to at least insulate them a bit.“They’ve got warm cider in the square,” Katie offers. “Kids don’t get the good kind though.”“Trust me,” Mama chuckles. “The fruit on the furthest branch isn’t necessarily the sweetest.”“Huh?”“She means alcohol isn’t all it’s cracked up to be,” Hannah translates. “I’ve had some from dad and it tastes like burning.”Whatever the finer points of liquor, the girls find easy access to the pitcher that’s intended just for them, lathing the sweet, hot broth into some nearby cups and letting the warmth creep up their hands. Even Mama gets a little bit, stifling a yawn.“Are you sleepy, Mama?” Cici asks.“Just a little cold, sweetling. It’s been nighttime for a while now, and Mama has trouble staying warm.”
>>805437“Ye’ve been puttin’ up a valiant effort, Ms.,” Guyus laughs, the upper part of his gorilla suit coming off before he drapes it around Mama’s shoulders, “but how about you take a breather in the bakery. Get some warmth back in that scaly hide of yours while I see to the kids.”“Are you sure? But I couldn’t possibly!”“Ha! It’s already done, Cass, and I reckon a half-gorilla-fied old man is about the scariest thing we’ll bump into on these streets tonight. So how’s about it, kids, any place you still want to see?”“Well, I did want to see the fortune teller…” Cici volunteers.“Ooh! Nice!” Katie cheers. “I’ve been meaning to go back!”“She tells you all sorts of neat stuff, or so I’ve heard…” Hannah chimes in.“Well, it’s a night for superstitious nonsense, so why not? Come along then, ya little monkeys. I’ll have ya back to yer mother once we’ve run yer batteries down a bit.”Mama waves from the doorway of the baker’s shop, clearly uncomfortable seeing everyone going, but as another breeze cuts across the square, this probably is the best place for her. “We’ll be safe, Mama!” Cici promises, and then the group is off the short little trek down the backroads to the medium’s tent, a purplish cloth peppered with stars sweeping wide at their approach.“Welcome, welcome,” says the woman emerging into the dim moonlight, foreign accent thick like her dark black hair as she gazes down at them all with her piercing green eyes. “And who would have their future told for but a meager price.”The girls all raise their hands as the old man stifles a chuckle.“Well, the moon is already high this evening, so I leave you a choice for yourselves. I can tell your fortunes all at once, or individually, whichever you prefer. I merely ask that you decide quickly.”“I don’t really care…” Katie says.“Neither do I…”[“Guess I get to decide then. Did you guys want to talk to the psychic lady in private?”]Strangely, the bracer seems to feel a resonance near this hut, something like a vibration in the air.> Write-in
>>805451...Something feels weird about this place to us...not painful, but...very unnerving.Individually might be better.
>>805451YES! Individually, please.Hahaha! Let's limber up those data links, feel those aetheric vibrations, and rouse old Zakharov, boys! It's time for some Planetary excitement!
>>805451It's a night of magic isn't it? This stuff should be private.
>>805451Cici, you might want to do this individually. Something is up here, and it might affect us. Just make sure you can quickly signal to others if you feel unsafe.
>>805451"...Fortune-lady? Can you hear us?"
>>805451Be careful Cici. She might have some important information that you only should hear. If something bad starts happening, run.
>>805474>>805561Not that there is likely to be anything dangerous.
>>805574>>805561>>805474>>805466>>805464>>805461>>805451“We can take turns,” Cici suggests. “There’s all sorts of spooky magic going around, and besides, someone might want to ask something super-secret.”“Right you are, child,” the mystic chimes in. “Tonight the shadows of the other world lie thick upon this land. Best we take heed and be careful, lest dire consequences await.”Behind his hand, Guyus sniffles.“Guess I’ll go first then,” Katie decides, moving in beneath a sweeping gesture before the curtain flaps close behind her.That just leaves Cici, Hannah, and Uncle Guyus to awkwardly sip on their cider, letting the warm beverage trickle down their throats as they listen to the mumbled words just out of ear shot.“Oh right!” Cici remembers something. “Uncle Guyus. Do you know what cotton candy is?”“Cotton candy? Hmm… Doesn’t sound familiar.”“It’s like a fluffy pink cloud made out of sugar. It’s supposed to be really good.”“That sounds amazing!” Hannah agrees.“Huh, stranded sugar, guess if you heated it up right, you could strand it out and swirl it… Maybe we can give that a try one day.”--Some more time passes before Katie comes out looking quite proud of herself.“I’m gonna be super rich and successful,” she boasts proudly. “And have three husbands!”“Neat,” Cici congratulates. “Hopefully Hannah’s fortune is also super good.”Hannah points to herself curiously as she realizes that she’s been elected as the next to go, the girl ducking into the shadows beyond rather swiftly afterward, apparently anxious to hear her fate.
>>805674“So… your mom,” Katie begins awkwardly. “Is she, like, some sort of fighter or something?”“Mama said she was an adventurer,” Cici explains, “but why do you ask?”“She just knows a lot about weapons and stuff, and gran said she killed a ton of vampires when she first moved in here…”“Can’t kill what’s already dead,” Guyus corrects. “She just laid them to rest proper.”“Y-yeah… I just wanted to know, because she seemed strong, is all… Maybe she could teach me some things…”“Hmm… Maybe,” Cici says after some consideration. “Mama always says I shouldn’t be worried about fighting. She says I should make friends instead.”“Sounds about right,” Guyus laughs. “And she isn’t wrong by a long shot. Keep it in mind, kids and remember it till your old, a sword can only make two things: enemies and corpses.”“Dark…”--Finally, it seems Cici’s turn arrives, Hannah ducking out and blinking away the sudden brightness the moonlight. She looks a bit glassy eyed as the others make to ask her how it went.“It went okay,” she promises. “Just… I might want to keep what I asked secret is all.”And that would be that, leaving Cici alone now to dive into the shadows, the faint scent of the woman’s perfume wafting up her nose as the curtains close and the large, glass ball on the table twinkles brightly, mirroring the light from the star cut curtains that makes all within appear as though cast into a starry void.“Your hands, child, if you would,” the woman requests quietly, her jewelry glittering like her eyes as she takes Cici’s hands and gently places them against her crystal ball with her own hands on top.And immediately, as the contact is made, the vague vibration from before becomes like a roar, the space within rippling with untapped power as it resonates with what’s buried within that clear glass sphere.“Oh spirits, I beseech thee,” she begins, voice layered with dramatic falsehood. After all, this was all an act for her.S̨̢͉̣̋̇ͬ͆̈͊͡ͅh̡̲͖̙̞̩̦̾͌e̱̹̤̘̪͒̚͠ ̂͂̋̐̿͏̱͈̳̮͓i͎̘̭̥̠͆̎̇̂͋s̺̜̲̼͕̖̈̔̅ͫ̆ ̖̘ͪ̽̊͜i̼͕̘̬͇̐̓́̚͟n̷̞̙̠̻̞̏͌ͭ̃̒͋͒̇̕ ̖̻͇̜̭̦ͣͦ͟y̤̳̭ͧ̾̌̆̃̚͡o̡̤͋̄ͩͨ͐͡u̷̳̭̼̩̘ͭ͒̏ͯ͜r͈͈̼̹̭͔̯ͬ̓̐́̾̓ ͚͓̠ͩͫ̽͑̐͢w̵̡̱̻̥͕̟͕̯͈ͮͤ́ồ̼̰̭̗̫̗̩̹ͣ͑ͭ̿͘r̡̹̫͔̘̖̲̘̤̘͊l͙̥͔͗͆́͌̎͞d̖̬͈͓͓̯̖ͪ̒͟ͅ ̨̘̦̰͓ͣ̾̀ͤ̓͒̽n͇̤̭̥̯̹̩̅͗̌̓̉͞o̡̟͖̮̻̣̪͔͒ͦ̾̎̐̑̒̆w͆̔ͩ̽̓̐҉̹̣͔̞͇͍͙ͅ.̡̮̉̍ͅ
>>805683So. Three husbands hmm?
>>805683Consider us beseeched. This better be good.
>>805704So what do we think, actual fortune teller beseeching the wrong spirits? Or a liar? Not that someone would lie about something as serious as a child's destiny. Would they?
>>805715Probably a fake with some latent magical talent.
>>805683>She is in our world nowhttps://youtu.be/CDgXQPxzY8EHELLO SINGLETON! We have such sights to show you!
>>805683"We are in a state of perpetual beseechment. 'Sup."
>>805683So how's the weather today?>>805715Maybe anon.Maybe she is lying.Or maybe not I don't know
>>805728But that would mean she had been lying to children wouldn't it? And that would be wrong.
>>805683Besieged? Shove off lady you can't d-Oh, nevermind. Hi again Cici, does this sound any different to you?
>>805683"Oh, also, where did you get the crystal orb? Can you just carve one out of quartz, or does it need magic stuff?"
>>805743The word "just" does not ever belong in front of the phrase "carve quartz", friend.
>>805752"Can you just magic it out of quartz?"
>>805792That sounds really difficult.To just magically carve quartz
>>805800What did I JUST tell you?
>>805800...Hang on, now I want to figure out how to magic a ball of quartz. Maybe a spell to prevent a spherical volume of quartz inside of a larger piece from reacting, and then dunk it in acid?
>>805807>>805800>>805743Gentlemen, please. We have a guest.
>>805813"The guest is welcome to join the discussion."
>>805813Did the guest even knock?Wait do we even have a door to knock on?If we don't we should get one!
>>805800>>805807>>805813>>805817Dammit. It never fails.I get all the images ready, the sights, sounds, feelings, and cold fingers of data from the datalinks, even drag Zakharov out here, and then the lot of you get distracted on some tangent or other and the entire sense of awe and terror just falls apart.
>>805813I'm neither gentle nor a man. Grr.
>>805683An echo on still water, an insignificant ripple on the fabric of an entire universe. It is nothing. Yet, to just one, it is everything.“Where am I?” the woman wonders aloud as she awakens to find herself cast adrift from her own corporeal form, wandering now through a boundless waste of blackened void with the consistency of mud.>>805692 >>805704>>805738 >>805730With a sound like thunder breaking over a dozen horizons and coal being ground into diamond, the void speaks, faces and forms unfamiliar and strange emerging at unknowable distance to address its concerns.“W-wait, what? WHAT!?” Her mind flips and flops as she struggles to process any of this, doing violent turns and contortions over and into itself as the carefully practiced posture built up over years of practice falls away. In this place, this unfamiliar place, there is only thought laid bare.>>805728 >>805715>>805731 >>805735Liar. Yes. No. Conflicting ideas play havoc on her ego, a thousand little white lies flying away like moths as she remembers how it all began. Stories of her gran told by her mother, tales of a woman who could actually see into the future and of the crystal ball that would someday be her heritage. It wasn’t real. It wasn’t right, but it put bread in hungry mouths.And wines. And chocolate. Again, her mind turns against itself.>>805743 >>805752 >>805792>>805800 >>805807 >>805810>>805813 >>805817 >>805824>>805729And no sooner has she righted herself than she realizes she is on the floor of a discussion. Unknowable entities speaking amongst each other, abstract concepts exploding into space and trying to claw their way into her mind. “Who are you?! What are you!? WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME?” she screams against the endless ceiling.“Could you… Could you maybe tell me my fortune?” comes a gentle voice, one not of this place, soothing almost given the disparity.> Write-in
>>805835I'm amazed you got Zakharov to do spiritual stuff instead of sticking another undergrad student into the particle accelerator that serves as his desk.
>>805841Is that Cici?Hey fortune teller lady can you please tell Cici her fortune now?She's really looking forward to it!Please let it be positive!>>805835I'm sorry.It just sounded interesting.
Alright, guys, let's settle it down for a second. Cici wants her fortune told, let's give the lady a shot at it.So, lady? What do we want from you? We just want to see if you're for real. We care about Cici a lot. A LOT.So...have at it. We're waiting.
>>805841>Who are you?!Collectively we are "The Voices">What are you!?Various spirits, you did beseech us after all>WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME?Now that one is more interesting.>Could you… Could you maybe tell me my fortune?She'll be with you in a moment Cici, she is currently having another discussion.
>>805841Yeah just say something like she has the potential to overcome all the trials and tribulations that life will inivetably throw at if keeps a level head and a big heart.
>>805841Please calm down, you're scaring a child.
>>805841"Too many variables. Not enough computing power to predict with significant accuracy. Only estimates are available.Observation: Statement of prediction changes current state from that which would cause prediction. Knowledge of future events changes future events to events unknown."
>>805841Alright, you. The kid wants to know her fortune. Seems you've got a bit of seer blood in you, like her, so maybe you want to put some actual effort into this, eh?>Who are you? What do you want?Oh, and these two questions? More important than you think.>>805844Oh, you mean his personal singularity inductor? Yeah, he's not a decent man so of course he wants to know what lies beyond an event horizon.
>>805858Ugh, while technically true is that really the way we want to with this? We could turn it into a lesson about the dangers of lying, you eventually run into someone who isn't.
>>805866You are discussion personal singularity inductuction in front of a child, you savage. Please refrain from overt lewdness around Cici, she'll learn about the birds and the bees on her own or from her mother when the time is right.
>>805858Come on, anon, seers and seeing visions is real, so don't let the lady just cop out.Sounds like her old gran was for real.Anybody got her number? Maybe we should call her up so she can straighten her granddaughter out.Seemed to work for Katie, maybe it'll work for this lady.
>>805866>someone who isn't.Someone who isn't what? Someone?
>>805841Alright, take a breath or two.Breathe in...And out...In...Out...Are you feeling better, now? Don't worry about the voices, it's just a large group of spirits from beyond death. We're not going to do anything to you.Unless you won't give our darling niece her fortune, that is. Then it's STRAIGHT to the Better Business Bureau!
>>805877Wait how would we contact her?We don't have a phone.Does anyone know any magic for talking to the dead?I don't.We also still don't have a door!
>>805890"We have a quest, I guess? Find the Oracle, get prophecy?"
...Why did we suddenly get all chattery and crazy? We don't act like this for Cici.
>>805877What would her grandmother think of her tarnishing the family name like this I wonder.
>>805898Cici's life is usually pretty straightforward.
>>805890>Wait how would we contact herUsing the opening that her granddaughter used to get in here?What goes in, can sometimes go out, right?>>805898Because we finally have a guest, someone who has entered our mana tesseract due to the aetheric vibrations of this time and place, the stars being right, and her having seer's blood.We were pretty chatty to Brandon when he accessed our holo-mana circuits directly, remember?
>>805898Cici is a young girl who pays varying amounts of attention to us.This young seer has accidently tapped into latent magic that has dragged her directly in front of us while at the same time shoving some rather uncomfortable truths directly in front of her.With all due respect to Cici, one of these situations is more intriguing than the other.
>>805902Now, now. We all have lapses in belief. Whether it's of the gods, or of ourselves, it happens. Let her try to show us that she can be a real seer. She deserves at least that.
>>805911Also helps that this charlatan is scared and we don't have any personal interest in her well-being.
>>805916What she deserves is yet to be seen. What has been demonstrated is terror, lies, and guilt and yet I would imagine there is more to her personality.
>>805919>charlatanIs there a word for a professional who is fully physically qualified for their job, but just slacks off at it because they don't think they're qualified?I feel like slacker is a more appropriate term than charlatan.
>>805947I'm pretty sure, based on her reaction, that this is all us. Baby. Unf.
>>805942We are in a space that few of the living have ever seen, friend. I myself remember attempting to scream myself hoarse for what felt like millennia when I found myself in here. Mind you, I only stopped when I realized it was starting to get boring.Anyway, let the one on trial at least attempt to defend her position. We may be able to read her mind, but that does not mean she is allowed no retort.
>>805958Which raises a question which I don't exactly relish the answer too. Can she leave?
>>805966Well, seeing as I brute-forced my way in here using a hammer, chisel, and gauntlet forged by the ancient dwarves, I don't know. Keep in mind, I was attempting to bypass it through the physical realms. She seems to have come here by projecting her spirit...Fascinating...
>>805841>>805848 >>805851>>805866 >>805889“I-I tried!” she shouts. “But I don’t know how!” No, it was always more diplomacy than divination. Find the girl with the pretty hair, promise her three children and a potbelly pig. Find the man with the failing marriage, give him normal advice though dead grandmama’s mouth piece. A little help for a little coin. Who cared about where the truth had to be stretched?Apparently, the voices cared, something they make very clear as they loom in from all sides, waiting for an answer, the very fabric of the world contorting under the pressure she finds herself in.>>805916 >>805919 >>805858>>805947 >>805958“I’m not lazy…” she says quietly. “I’m just human.”Just human: just normal, unexceptional, a traveling gypsy with unfamiliar roads ahead of her and nothing but burnt bridges behind.“I want to tell your future, but- but I just don’t know how!” And with that, she begins to cry.
>>805992*sigh* Well. That's disappointing, but not unexpected.Look, kid. Stop trying to fake what you aren't. Else it'll come back to bite you again. Probably worse than this. Maybe find something you enjoy, something you're good at? Just because it's in your family line doesn't force you to be one- at least, it shouldn't.If you REALLY, really really want to give it a shot, though...well, who knows? Maybe we can help somehow?
>>805992There, there, dear. It's all right... nobody's perfect, not even spirits from beyond the realm of the living.(Nudges >>805966)See what you did to the poor girl? The first visitor we get with a heartbeat, and you make her break down in tears.
>>805992>Just human: just normal, unexceptional, a traveling gypsy with unfamiliar roads ahead of her and nothing but burnt bridges behind.Well, apparently not entirely or this wouldn't be happening now would it? Everyone's gotta start somewhere. Focus, and give it your best shot.
>>805992Please calm down, most of us here just want to talk. Well, talk and help Cici learn with the collective knowledge of an entire civilization.
>>805992>>806000>>806003>>806095>>806121Despite the comforting words, it’s a long time coming for the girl to finally calm down. It’s just too much to have one’s mind laid bare, to have no place to hide, especially from yourself. Eventually, she just dissolves into quiet, pleading murmurs for it all to go away.“It’s okay,” again, a voice seems to ring from the outside, this time heralding the emergence of a silhouette in vaguely childlike form. The small girl carved from gossamer emerges from the void whole-cloth, before moving up to hug the sobbing woman. “We all have things we’re good at.”Of course, comfort is seldom instantaneous, and the sobs continue for some time after, but as the moments tick by in that simple embrace and her words take root, images begin to cautiously make themselves known across the mental space, something like home movies playing against the empty walls of the void and bringing some measure of warmth back to combat the sorrow. And it doesn’t take much effort to see them for what they are, not here of all places. Each is a snapshot in time, a moment of purest satisfaction this woman had felt in a job well done finally finding a way to shine through the guilt. After all, these were her greatest triumphs. Every time a couple came to terms with each other after hearing from a passed on ‘relative’, every time a young girl found the courage to fall in love because of something she had said, or maybe just those times she had given some poor slob a bit of hope, even if it was all just a pipe dream: those are the bright beacons that shine bright against the darkness that otherwise occupies her mind.“Mama says everyone has a talent,” Cici promises, perhaps not seeing what the woman sees. “You just have to try hard and believe in yourself until you find it. Don’t worry though. I believe in you.”And just like that, the woman and child are back in that tiny tent, the latter still hugging the former as the tears continue rolling down her cheeks.[“Guys, I don’t know what I should do…I'm scared...”]> Write-in
>>806128Blargh. And I am officially tapped for one night. Maybe we can wrap this up tomorrow for the Halloween special.
>>806128Cici, you already have done what is most important. You have brought this woman the feeling of peace and safety. If you want to continue, to know what she may have to offer, just keep talking to her. If you don't just picture slowly let her go. Kind of like you did with the fire Grampa Wizard showed you.
>>806131If you could still continue the story overall, I would be very grateful. This was the first thread that I was able to join in on, and I really want to help Cici learn and grow. She has so much potential in this world you have made.
>>806137No worries. That's the plan anon. And I'm glad you are having fun.
>>806128Nah, don't be scared, Cici. The fortuneteller's grandmother was a seer, just like your grandmother. She just ended up in the bracelet with us for a while, and the whole experience was a little overwhelming for her. Oh! I know! Maybe you can ask grandpa about seers and oracles, and if he can test the fortuneteller's aptitude.
>>806128"Don't worry, Cici. We just scared her a little. Give her a little comfort, she should come around shortly."
>>806128Another day of having work thrust on me at the last minute. I'll see what I can do though.
>>807404Well... damn. There's no chance I'm clearing my books tonight to write. More to the point, I'll be traveling over the next couple of days on business. Apologies folks. Please keep an eye on my twitter for when I can manage to wrestle my time free and get back to it.
>>806128It's fine Cic, it's just...you remember the first time you realised some people were scared of you? It's kind of like that.
>>806128"Cici, just tell her that it will be okay. Tell her that she can offer advice instead of Fortune Telling. Tell her that is over and that she is safe now."
>>807802>>807404>>808768>>808860Apologies folks. As soon as I got back, people had plenty of work for me to do. Still, I'm hoping we can pick back up Saturday with a new thread. In the meantime, this thread is up in the archive. Please, vote it up.
>>821426Oh god, Monday! I meant to type Monday!
Are you reusing this thread?