(( Previous threads:http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=SoulQMTwitter:https://twitter.com/SoulQM Erick's inventory and Shards:http://pastebin.com/MxM1SNLwWon't be too long a thread, just until I collapse.Ideally, I'll let you know before that happens! )) The whirlpool before you spins to a stop, and a shockwave ripples the water from beneath the surface as a lashing liquid tendril breaches the surface. Spinning and twisting, it rises to nearly twice your height, color and opacity spinning to its outermost layer from somewhere deep within. The rising column of water begins to change shape, assuming the form of a feminine humanoid, with webbed hands, a long finned tail in place of legs, and skin and hair of an ocean blue. From the center of her forehead hangs a bobbing lure like an anglerfish's, a bioluminescent jewel at its tip; her modesty is maintained only by a flowing garment of translucent silk, decorated and patched with iridescent, piscine scales.“Ah... so you weren't too busy for me, after all.” Slowly, she turns to face you, speaking in a high-pitched, melismatic tone. Water pours from her garment's pauldrons in neverending streams. “You've finally returned to—“Her eyes meet yours, and there's a long pause, in which she looks unsure of what what to say. You glance over your shoulder, at Sonia, Grato, Rebecca, and Daeron; the four of them look just as confused.“You're... a Shardkeeper.” The Spirit checks the statement with herself, seeming unsure of it. “I'm sorry, I mistook you for... someone else.”“Sincerest apologies for the confusion, Spirit.” You nod, taking a few careful steps closer to the water. “Might I ask who you've mistaken me for?”“I am Maraja, Spirit of the Ocean.” She sighs. “I mistook you for Shardkeeper Kadi, with whom I have a pact.”You raise an eyebrow. It's been a while since you've heard someone speak your Master's name.>What will you do?
>>30703744"It's an honor to meet you Lady Maraja. I apologize if I have disturbed you, I came to this village seeking a reason for the current fishing shortage at the nearby village, and when I felt your presence beckoning me closer I investigated further.I'm the Shardkeeper Erick Valstein, and I haven't heard my former Master's name in many years. What sort of arrangement did you have with him?" Show her the proper respect, bow when we introduce ourself, stay polite, and once we get a talk going ask her more about herself and the local area.
>>30703744Introduce yourself as his apprentice. Ask your other souls if they know anything about her.
Aw fuck it's back
Oh what the shit, it's not dead! Sadly I'm about to crash for the night, but good to have you back Sooooul Brotha.
>>30704017You could mentally contact Skeith or Ilyanas, but the conversation would most certainly stall. You'd hate to appear impolite.>>30703982“It's an honor to meet you, Lady Maraja. I apologize if I've disturbed you. I came to the nearby village seeking a reason for the fishing shortage in the area, and when I felt your presence beckoning me closer, I investigated further. It's strange, though, that you mistook me for Kadi.” As you introduce yourself, you bow properly. For a second, you think to introduce your companions, but the Spirit doesn't appear terribly interested in them. “I'm the Shardkeeper Erick Valstein, his apprentice. I haven't heard my former Master's name in years. What sort of arrangement did you have with him?”“I'm... pleased to meet you too, Erick. Perhaps your energy is similar to his, but I should have known better.” She looks at you with interest for a bit, then frowns. You note a strange, bubbling echo to her voice, as if she's speaking into a glass bowl or from behind a curtain of water. “Our agreement was quite simple, as it was. At your Master's behest, I afforded the nearby village a blessing of prosperity, summoning great swaths of fish from the depths such that they might feed themselves. In exchange, he would return to this place once each season, to show me the power of Soul from faraway places, and to lie with me upon these rocks.”Rebecca groans. “I didn't need to hear that.”“But soon, he began to appear less and less frequently, until he vanished from this place altogether.” Maraja continues, mouth curling into a resigned half-smile. “It's been years now since I've seen your Master or any other Shardkeeper, you know.”You think you can sympathize.What will you say?>“The villagers say their fishing spot's run dry. What happened?”>Ask something about Shardkeeper Kadi. (Description)>Other
>>30704440>>“The villagers say their fishing spot's run dry. What happened?”
>>30704440>“The villagers say their fishing spot's run dry. What happened?”
>>30704485>>30704489Obviously his master stopped visiting. You can't expect a spirit to just summon up fish for free without her casual seasonal fucks, now can you?
>>30703744Long time no see.
>>30704528Probably, but with this option we can see about renewing the deal.
>>30704528Yeah, but it's only polite to ask before proposing to start boning in your master's place.
>>30704528I'd like to think that it's a bit more the spirit just enjoying the feeling of a Shardkeeper's soul...>>30704440First option, AND "Did my master ever mention anything about me, or his other apprentice?"We really need to figure out why Anise wants us dead.
>>30704485>>30704489“The villagers say their fishing spot's run dry.” You fold your arms. “As I'm sure you're aware, they speak of you in rumors as the one who made this place prosperous. What happened?”“My blessing was contingent on my pact with your Master. That pact has since been nullified, though only recently did I decide that I will wait no longer.” She nods, lowering herself to your height. “As I once summoned schools of fish, so can I call upon my leviathan to devour anything that might dwell beneath the surface of the nearby waters.”What will you say?>Other
>>30704628Offer to make a new pact with her.
>>30704628uh well please don't do that
>>30704628You've no idea why my master left? Did he mention where he was going, the last time you saw him? I might be able to return him, and have my own reasons for wishing to find him too.
>>30704628You only have one leviathan?
>>30704628"Do not take my mistake my words for mockery, milady ladies, but that leviathan is truly yours? I sensed it on the way towards your most beckoning of haunts. My Master was surely the luckiest of all men to have managed to make a pact with you."
>>30704628>Master managed to seduce ocean spirits well enough to make a whole town prosperGodDAMN
>>30704845Really though.I wonder why he wants us dead.
>>30704723A leviathan, huh? You did sense something out of the ordinary, earlier; if anything, it's a pretty reasonable explanation for where all the fish went.You nod. “I sensed such a creature on my way to this place. My Master was truly the luckiest of all men, to have managed a pact with you.”“Shardkeeper,” You catch a strange scent—bitter and clean like seawater, with a sweetness like perfume—as Maraja takes a closer look at you, running her fingertips across your face. “I'm sorry to say that flattery will get you nowhere. You are quite a gentleman, but he possessed a fire that you lack.”>>30704577“Fair enough.” You can't help but grin. “Did my Master ever speak of me, or his other apprentice?”“Indeed. I have heard of you, though not by name until today.” The Spirit says. “Only in passing did he speak of his two disciples, and he would not tell me much when my own curiosity drove me to ask—from his words, I gleaned that he cared deeply for you and his other initiate, though in later times he feared that one of you might have lost sight of what he believed was the true purpose of your art.”>>30704676“Do you have any idea why he left? Do you know where he was going?” You ask. “I might be able to bring him back.”“If I did, I might be so bold as to stray from this place and seek him out myself.” Maraja gives another drawn-out sigh. “He spoke of one other thing, in later times—his campaign against some dark Spirit, one who allegedly despised the art of Shardkeeping. As usual, he kept the details to himself, though I worried so.”>What will you say?
>>30705000Ask her what we can do to make her bring back the fish.
>>30705000>Some dark spiritSkeiiiiiiiiiiiiiiith!
>>30705000"That sounds familiar", you say flatly."I don't mean to offend, but would you mind if I asked you to call your leviathan off? I've no quarrel with you, but I can't rightly sit by and allow the people of this village to starve to death as the result of something that was never their fault."
>>30705000Ask her if there's any way we can get her to reinstate her blessing, or at least call off the leviathan.
>>30705049And then Skieth just snickers at you.
>>30705080What do we have him invested in right now? The Halberd? I totally prefer the knife.Well at least he can't 'accidentally' poke us with that too easily.
>>30705049>>30705095I sorta like him. He's a solid foil.An asshole, though. Goddamnit, Skieth.
>>30705112I like him too, Anon. I feel like perhaps we can change his mind on Shardkeepers too, if we're careful. At least we might be able to make him think twice about slaying them on sight next time.Or maybe he's just getting in our heads and being endearing so we'll let our guard down and he can regain power.
>>30705148I don't know who we need to be more worried about letting our guard down around, Skeith of Ilyanas.It feels like we got tossed into a SHIT TON of really powerful spirits REALLY fast. I wonder what would've happened had we not gone towards the city/swamps.
>>30705062Sure. Please stay awake, OP. Your setting is so interesting and your characters so fleshed. You don't run this quest nearly enough.
>>30705062“Maraja, I don't mean to offend, but could I ask you to call your Leviathan off?” You ask. “I've no quarrel with you, but I can't rightly sit by and allow the people of this village to starve to death as the result of something that was never their fault.”“I'm gonna go ahead and second that motion.” Daeron says, raising a hand. He shrugs at the group, giving Maraja a nervous look. “Uh, pardon me, Spirit, but they really are suffering over there. The whole village has lost their livelihood.”“I... hm.” The Ocean Spirit pauses. “Perhaps I acted rashly. If you really are keen on finding your Master... perhaps I can afford him an extension until you can present news of his whereabouts. Should you find this acceptable, I can restore the ocean life to a natural level within hours.”>What will you say?
>>30705220Sounds fine. We should question Skeith once we get outside.
>>30705220"Certainly. I will either come myself, or send word by messenger. If you must see me, I will do my best to come in person."
>>30705239Not so fast. We can't go charging off after the master right now.
"I'm not sure where he is. Perhaps we could negotiate a different arrangement?"
>>30705220"Thank you for your gracious offer, Maraja but I...must admit something to you. You noticed that I lacked the fire my master had. To be honest with you, I have only left the village where he left me in apprenticehood scant weeks ago. I have learned much since then, but the sole reason I have lasted long enough to even be at this meeting is due to fantastic luck and the grace of my friends here.So, alas, I don't believe that I can rightfully accept that offer, as I fear that the chances of a minnow against your leviathan would be better than my chances against whatever has occupied my master for so long."
>>30705336"I also have other causes to worry that I would not be able to fulfill such an open-ended request, and would prefer not to wager the livelihoods of these people upon my paltry abilities.Is there, perhaps, another way I might be able to secure the villagers natural levels of sustenance, if not the boon of prosperity that my master was able to draw from you?"
>>30705304>>30705336>>30705368Seconding these, I don't want to have to leave the city after we just got here. Can't we have a couple of weeks of peace before we go off charging to god-knows where?
>>30705336>>30705368“Thank you for your gracious offer, Maraja, but I must admit something to you. You noticed I... lack the fire that my Master had. To be honest, I've only recently left the village where he left me in apprenticehood.” You turn to face the hunters briefly. “I've learned much since then, but the sole reason I've lasted long enough to even be at this meeting is due to fantastic luck, and the grace of my friends here.”“Believe us, we've been through the wringer.” Rebecca adds. “And we just met the guy a few days ago.”“I don't believe I can rightfully accept your offer, Maraja. I fear the chances of a minnow against your leviathan would be better than my chances against whatever's occupied my Master for so long.” You pause. “And I've also got other causes to worry about at the moment... I'd prefer not to wager the livelihoods of these people upon my paltry abilities. Is there some other way I might be able to secure the villagers' natural levels of sustenance, if n—”“Erick...” Having listened intently, the Ocean Spirit laughs. “I know of the responsibility that your craft demands. In time, you will learn to carry the weight. I have ordered my creature to slumber in the depths, for now. Is there anything else you'd care to ask?”>What will you say?
>>30705532Ask her about the dark spirit.
>>30705549This, I suppose.
>>30705532"You are quite unlike the other spirits I've met. I don't suppose you've ever encountered or heard of a spirit that disrupts the soul, and colors artifacts deepest (purple or blue? What color was the damned sword Anise had?)Also, do you know of any means to hide or obscure the presence of soul-power? I am in great need to go unnoticed, but I suspect the flare of our equipment and myself allow my pursuer to track me."
>>30705532"What...what was he like, my master? He was a fine teacher but lately I've found myself doubting that I ever truly knew him. Were I more like him maybe I'd find a fire within but maybe finding my own answer is part of being his apprentice"
>>30705636>>30705592>>30705549Fluffy, and useful. I like them.We've got some damnably silver-tongued anons up in this quest, I swear.
Think you have one last update in you, QM?
“What was he like?” You ask. “My Master. He was a fine teacher, but lately, I've found myself doubting that I never truly knew him. Were I more like him, perhaps...”“Ah, I've interested you, have I? Are you wondering how you might start a fire within yourself?” Maraja's chuckling gives way to a longing sigh. “He was a good man—and a man of many secrets, but he always had his reasons for keeping them. He was courageous, you know, he took such pride in his art, and in his strength, and I know he'd do anything that he thought would make the world... a fairer place.”“A fairer place?”“He didn't believe that there was good in all things. Rather, he practiced good, and believed in balance. Do you understand? It is difficult for me to convey, but I was once captivated by the nature of his heart, and the very energy he possessed about him.”“What about this dark Spirit he campaigned against? Do you know anything more of it?”“I know he feared it. Once, in a whisper, he spoke the name 'Calizan'.” Majara says, solemnly. “It was a Spirit motivated by power, and bound to no particular land. It was intelligent, and had the power to violate the balance of nature—to disrupt and destroy Soul itself.”>What will you say?
>>30705859(( I'm actually less tired than I was the last time I -started- a thread. A bit slower than normal, still, but I can definitely grind out just a couple more before I retire. ))
>>30705863Ask her if you can have a moment to consult with your other two spirits. Ask them if they know anything about Calizan.
>>30705863"Aah...in that case, Majara, you may want to be careful of reaching out to any other shardkeepers you sense around this area.Would you pardon me for a moment while I consult with my companions to see if they've heard that name before?"Skeith: This is worrying, Skeith. Her description resembles what I felt from my former comrade's sword, do you agree? Have you ever heard of such a thing? Do you have any particular insight, Skeith, due to your nature?Ilyanas:You haven't drifted off on me, have you, Ilyanas? Have you ever heard of a spirit named "Calizan"? One known to disrupt and destroy Soul?To Both:Where do you stand on what this "Calizan" reportedly does?
>>30705918“Maraja, if I might consult briefly with the other Spirits accompanying me?” You say.“Go right ahead.” The Spirit replies. "It's been some time since I've had visitors; I must admit, I do quite care for the company of you and your friends."What will you do?>Ask something of Skeith.>Ask something of Ilyanas.>Summon Skeith, Ilyanas, or both, to speak with them directly.>Other.
>>30705973(( Dropped trip. ))
>>30705973This: >>30705966Include the bit warning Majara about other shardkeepers.I don't suppose anyone else is in full paranoid/panic mode, are they? My shadowrunner sense is going haywire right now.I guess the QMs tiredness works in our advantage, at the moment. I doubt he's willing to run a combat sequence of Anise-battle intensity just yet.
>>30705973>>Summon Skeith, Ilyanas, or both, to speak with them directly.Summon both.
>>30706001Summon them, then ask them these >>30705966
You focus, meditating briefly on your pacts with Skeith and Ilyanas. A gust of wind whirls through the cavern, tossing the water's surface into spray; droplets dispersed throughout the air refract faint blue light throughout the cavern as Soul gathers, coalescing into swirling leaves and black mist.Strange, alien chants echo upward in a pair of familiar voices as the reagents take their respective forms on either sides of you; Skeith's sinister, spindly form, Ilyanas's towering, genderless body, and Maraja's unusual beauty place you and the hunters in the middle of a triangle of powerful Spirits.“Maraja, my old friend!” The Venom Spirit snaps to life, laughing and hissing loudly the moment he takes hold of his surroundings. “I thought we'd never cross paths again, after I was... forcibly relocated to greener pastures so long ago.”“You?” Maraja's face grows wrought with anger, the wave pool beneath her twisting into a miniature maelstrom. “Shardkeeper, how dare you bring this demon to taint my waters?”“The very notion offends me, Maraja.” Skeith's twisted grin stretches far across his head. “Erick has shown me the error of my ways. The two of us now fight together, you see?”“Valstein, what is it?” Ilyanas's calm voice echoes through the cave. You turn to the Sylvan spirit, who floats above the water, aiming a bow similar to Ent's Ire at Skeith; it pulls back a large arrow that more closely resembles a green-glowing wooden spear. “Have you called upon me to deal with this corruptor? Stand back, and I will destroy him swiftly.”“Erick, have you made a pact with this Spirit? What has he told you?” The Venom Spirit looks concerned; he pauses, then turns and strides toward Ilyanas, large hands twisting into the shape of black, poison-coated scythes. “Their kind cannot be trusted. They are known for the lies they tell.”>What will you say?
>>30706245Tell them to calm down, we're all friends here. Then ask about Calizan.
(( Ehhh. Archiving here; this is as good as I'm going to do running at this time. We'll pick right back up next thread. I might answer some questions, though, if there are any. As always, thanks for the replies, more so this time of night! ))
>>30706245"Skeith, Ilyanas, I have not called on either of you to do battle. I care not what regard you hold each other in, stand down, I will have peace. I have questions, and I seek answers."Then ask them about Calizan, ask Majara and Skeith how long ago they knew each other and if it was our Master who forcibly relocated him, see if any of them have any insight on the situation.Also ask Ilyanas where she came from, we may as well.
>>30706245That's what we get."Calm yourselves, if you would. We have bigger problems here, and unless you would like to spare the spirit-in-the-sword, Calizan the trouble of killing us by doing it yourselves.Skeith, you've been with me twice when we've fallen under attack. You know that the dragon-rider can track Soul activity. Would you like to bring her upon us, with her sword, and this time knowing our tricks? I know you would relish the battle, but is it worth being obliterated by the sword?Maraja, Ilyanas, if you begin battle here then this corruptor will be the smaller evil you see today. There are things you do not know."
>>30706313Thanks for running. Any idea when the next thread is?
>>30706314Don't you remember? Skeith tried to invade the city/this area from his home in the swamp in ancient times, but was driven out by (if I recall correctly) a purifying flood.I took it to be a Shardkeeper, I guess it was Maraja.
>>30706359(( Unfortunately my current schedule affords few opportunities for QMing. I'm hoping to run a thread sometime during the upcoming mid-week. After that, I've got break, so there'll probably be two or three more.According to history, I'll be posting a shoutout on Twitter anywhere from twelve hours to fifteen minutes in advance. ))>>30706366(( According to Skeith, it was a Shardkeeper that drove him off. So that's something worth asking about maybe. ))
>>30706313Thanks for running again. Think you might be able to nail down a time during Spring Break where you'll definitely run? We're in a delicate situation and all, and I'd rather not see it blow up in a flurry of water, poison, and life draining plants because some new guys navigated this wrong.
>>30706403Now might not be the best time for calling him out, though thanks for the reminder as that could be ammo against him calling Ilyanas' kind all liars Like we trust any of these guys.
>>30706423Might actually be a pretty good time to call him out on that. You know, show him we don't trust him any more than we trust Ilyanas.
>>30706403You do a good job of keeping things challenging/dangerous and keeping us on our toes because things might blow up at any time, all while still giving us enough power to have fun. Good job, keep it up.