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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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Dead Gods Thirteen! Last thread was a huge clusterfuck of bad ideas and poor planning, but maybe you won't take a critical hit in this one!

For old threads, look here! http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Dead%20Gods%20Quest

For updates, check twitter! @Someone_else___

Elsa's Character Sheet! http://pastebin.com/ezsJzAWG

Resident artist: Eversor_
You are Airo Silver-taker. You are a Herald of Ghalad. You really wish you weren’t, today.

A faint sound of dripping water echoes through the dank cave. You wrinkle your nose and try to breathe through your mouth. “What the hell are we waiting for?” you ask the group of people behind you.

The dwarf, a soldier named Grimald, shakes his squat head. “A gang of raiders. What else?” The God Gem on his arm shimmers in the odd light of the cavern, much yours does from your forehead.

“Mercenaries, please,” a refined-looking cepro corrects him. That one’s a female, you think. D’rtea, or something like that. Why do they have so little difficulty pronouncing your name, while you have all the trouble in the world pronouncing theirs? “They prefer to call themselves mercenaries.” Her gem is hidden under her odd cowl, where nobody can see it.

“They’re raiders, pure and simple,” Grimald grunts.

The last member of your group, a human woman whose legs are hard to ignore, speaks up from the shadows of the caves. “Best not tell them that,” Danielle mutters. Even her voice is attractive. Why are you here in this cave and not back at camp? Her God Gem rests on her collarbone, which only accentuates her mouthwatering looks. She catches your notice and shoots you a glance that’s just plain unfair. You swallow and look away so the others don’t notice.

Danielle continues. “Grimald and Airo may be tunnel-fighters, but we need numbers and maps for this. That means locals.”

“And all the locals are sell-swords,” Grimald sighs. “Of course.”

A clatter of armor from up the tunnel catches your attention. Seven goblins with heavy armor strewn about their lumpen bodies jog into sight and wave when they see you. It’s kinda creepy how they all do it at once, but whatever. Goblins.


Good to see you on board. What fuckups will we get ourselves into today?
You pull your hat off and let the light from the vent shaft catch your forehead, bringing them all to a halt. You raise your arms to catch their attention afresh. “Warriors! I am Airo, a Herald of the Pantheon. To whom shall I speak?”

Their leader, who was actually pretty easy to pick out, being the largest, ambles up, chewing something distractedly. “ ‘Choo want, God-speaker?” he growls. “We’re here for a gig.”

“I asked you to be here,” you remind him.

“Eh, we came because you were on the way to another gig,” the goblin says, waving one hand.

You hold back a sigh. Goblins barely even respect their own gods. You have no idea why you'd expected them to respect you. “Then to business.” You tap the pommel of your enchanted human sword, and the ringing sound from the enchantment catches their ears. “I want you to attack someone for me. I don’t care if you stay and fight them, I just need them distracted. Say, for four minutes.”

The goblin peers up at you. “Yeah? Go on.”

“There’s a small convoy of Crawlers nearby who have decided to start trafficking in relics belonging to the now-departed Spirelings,” you say. “We want them distracted long enough for the four of us to sneak in and kill their leader. After that, you can keep everything they had on them. Relics included.”

“Now that’s good money!” the goblin titters. “Funny, though. You say you want their leader dead, and we can keep their shit?”


The goblin waves his hand. “Odd coincidence, that. We had another job offer this very morning with identical instructions. Different target, though.”

Grimald frowns. “Who?”

The goblin smirks.

Six daggers appear in your chest.

You fall and die.

Ghalad appears in the steel box after life as you lurch from the ground, screaming, suddenly naked and covered in puncture wounds. “Brother! What happened?” he demands.

Tears appear in your eyes as you slam your fists against the floor. “Sons of bitches! It was an ambush! Gobbo scum tricked us! The Crawlers hired them to attack and murder me!”

The shimmer of elemental, rage in Ghalad’s eyes shocks you back a pace. “They dare kill the Heralds?” he hisses. The trident in his hand erupts in sparks as his divine appearance melts into a elfin cloud of lightning, glittering and dancing inside the room. “They will all die!”

“What… what about me, brother?” you ask. You lick your ghostly lips as Ghalad’s gaze turns sorrowful. “I’m not… I mean, I’m not going to hell for what I did before, am I? With the banker?”

His silence is genuinely horrible. “…You will, my brother. For a day or so,” he finally says. You whimper in primal fear as the memories of your drunken foolishness as a boy come back. “Then eleven hundred years of bliss and joy, and a peaceful rest in Mother’s arms,” he promises. “A day or two of torment will only sweeten eternity.”

The horror sucks the feeling from your spectral limbs. “But… I was promised absolution if I became a Herald!”

Ghalad shakes his head sadly. “No, you were promised absolution if you worked to earn it AS a Herald. You had only been on the job for a month before death.”

You grip your head with both hands and try not to cry. “No… not… not like this…”

Ghalad’s form returns to that of a young man in the garb of a simple fisherman and crouches before you as you collapse in unholy terror. “I’ll be on the other side, my brother,” he says quietly. The wisdom and pain in his wide, dark grey eyes soothes a bit of your fear. “Trust me. You earned that. No taste of wine, women, or triumph shall equal your reward, when you get there.”

“But, but, but… I don’t… want to go to hell,” you groan.

Ghalad shakes his head. “I can’t forgive you completely, Airo. Not for murder. He grips your shaking shoulders for a moment. “Be brave, my brother. You’ll be fine.” He straightens up and snaps his fingers, and the steel box turns to a room of stone. “All right. I’ll see you in two days.” Then he’s gone.

The door opens behind you. You close your eyes so you don’t have to see them come in and take you to the Falls, but you can still hear their shuffling footsteps. Cold, wet hands seize your shoulders. You have just enough time to scream.


You lurch upright. Your scream was so loud it even shocked Asa back in her crouch. “Elsa! Elsa, calm down, it’s all right, I got to you in time!” she says, rubbing some blue substance onto your shoulder. You grip her arm like it’s all you’ve got and scream again.


Asa grips your chin and squeezes so hard the bone creaks. “SHUT UP, Elsa! Do you hear me? BE QUIET!” Her silver eyes erupt in bright purple light, and your fear is gone.

You collapse back on the floor, reflexively rubbing your hands over your chest where the daggers killed you, and your back where the hands, those awful hands touched you, and… oh. And your shoulder, where an unknown assassin shot you with a poisoned arrow.

“Asa! What… what happened?” you gasp. “Where’s Hooks?”

“Dead!” Asa reports, pointing him and his women out. “Someone shot him. And you, and the wall, and this poor soldier, and me!”

You stare. She’s unhurt. “I had a shield up,” Asa says. “Forget that. This soldier is dying.”

Newlar is in pretty bad shape. The poison arrow stuck in her side, so she’s probably getting an even bigger dose than you did.

You try to sit up and Asa slaps you back down with her hand on your shoulder. “Lie still, my daughter! The arrow is out and I’ve removed the poison, but this wound is awful! I can fix it if you stop squirming.”

Memories come crashing back. “Newlar…will she live?” you ask.

“I have no idea,” Asa grumbles. “If I had known you were attacking tonight, I would have told you to sit tight, or request more backup.”

“It wasn’t the plan!” you say. “We came to spy! There was a spotter on another roof, and he had poison arrows!”

“Oh, I know!” Asa snaps angrily. “His name is Forest. He’s an assassin, hired by Don Kotrick to protect the other conspiracy members. That way, we Avatars can’t step in and kill the conspirators, since the hitman may have the Orb with him. Clever. Feathers and Hooks both knew about him.”

You grimace as she knits your body back together. “And Laurenz didn’t?”

“No. Laurenz thought HE was the ace in the hole.” Asa pulls her hands back and plants them on her knees. “You’re as healed as I can make you while you’re awake. Now, tell me what you were screaming about.”

>”I had a nightmare about another Herald, and (I saw him die/I saw him go to hell/I woke up and saw you and panicked)”
>”Must I?”
>>”I had a nightmare about another Herald, and (I saw him die/I saw him go to hell/I woke up and saw you and panicked)”

Explanation please. Are we somehow channeling the Heralds before us? Is that normal?
You want all three options?

What's the third?
Each thing in the parenthesis is a different option.
>[x] ”I had a nightmare about another Herald, and I saw him die!”

I think we're only supposed to chose one sub-option if we take the first choice.
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I put my faith in the Mexican girl. And Blast Hardcheese.
Very well, that's acceptable. Remember that you can take any combinations of options unless they're obviously made mutually exclusive, like with an

in there.
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“A Herald.” The sheets bunch in your fist as you haul yourself up. “I had a horrible nightmare about another Herald.”

Asa blinks. “What? Like the memories I gave you?”

You pat down Newlar’s armor, looking for anything to dilute the poison in her. “Yeah, Airo Silver-taker. Listen, can you help Newlar?”

Asa grabs your shoulder and wrenches you around. “Airo?” she asks sharply. “You saw him? My brother’s Herald?”

You pull back and grab the little blue bottle from the floor where Asa dropped it. “Yes, and I’ll explain later, but we need to save Newlar! What is this stuff?”

“Sleeping potion. To make you go to sleep faster, so I could heal you,” Asa says. “What did you see?”

“I saw him die, but never mind! Newlar’s dying too!” you cry. “Can you save her?”

“No!” Asa points angrily at Newlar’s bloodied head. “She’s human! I can’t heal her! Only Vier or Haret could!”

>”Can I do it somehow?”
>”Will they do it if you ask?”
>>”Can I do it somehow?”
Frantic now, you turn back to Newlar’s shivering body. “All right, all right…maybe I can do it! Do I have healing powers?”

Asa runs her hand over her eyes. “Well…not legally.”

You turn back to glare at her. “What the fuck does that mean?”

She actually flinches. Not at the profanity, but at some hidden recollection. “Near the end of the Collapse, we were allowed by Mai’te to give Heralds powers they shouldn’t have had. It made the fighting even worse.”

“And I’m the first Herald since then, so what’s the problem?” You grab Newlar’s hand and grip it tight. “Her injury is my fault! Let me fix this!”

Asa sighs heavily. “We all swore never to grant them again…in the unlikely event we made more Heralds. Let me ask the others if they’ll allow it.”

Her eyes flicker for an instant, then refocus. “Vier says no, I say yes…Haret says he’ll allow it, on one condition.”

>”What is it?”
>”Fuck that!”
”Will they do it if you ask?”
>>”What is it?”
”What is it?”
"Can you skullfuck Captcha?"
Haret is the swing vote? You didn’t expect that. “What is it?”

“He wants you to ensure the…safe delivery of a package,” Asa says, in manifest surprise. “Of all things,” she adds under her breath.

“Is it something I can deliver quickly?” you ask, pointing at the thin trail of greenish blood coming from Newlar’s mouth.

“Oh, no, no, tomorrow afternoon!” Asa hastens to assure you. “You’ll gain your power right now!”

“Then I agree!”

Without ceremony, Asa presses her hand against your forehead. Again, the blissful calm of Mai’te’s power rushes through your body, relaxing your muscles and soothing your mind. Your eyes slip shut as the gem in your forehead warms; the brand itches again, then the world resumes.

New Divine Ability unlocked!

The knowledge to use the ability rushes into your head, but it’s very different from last time. The power is an unpleasant tingle in your hands, instead of a soaring might in your voice. “Okay, weird,” you mutter. “Is this harmful?”

“Very.” Asa winces. “Don’t abuse it. Please. Haret and Vier will be most piqued, and it will hurt.”

Newlar is dying, though. You don’t have a choice. You slap your hand over the wound in her side, arrow and all. Blood splatters onto the floor as a rush of strange-looking orange energy crackles from your palm into Newlar’s flank. The arrow pops out with a sick gush of green and red.

“Ew.” You wrinkle your nose as the room fills with a noxious scent. “Am I doing it wrong?”

“No, this is right. Inasmuch as stolen power can be,” Asa grumbles. “It was dumb when we used it and dumb now.”


“The power was looted from a dead praun demigod,” Asa confesses. “We can’t normally do this.”

>”You stole powers from dead Pantheon members?”
”You stole powers from dead Pantheon members?”
something about not working properly given second hand powers?
"I'm afraid to ask, but have you 'looted' anything else from other dead Pantheon members?"
The sizzle of frying meat from Newlar’s flank is very, very worrying. Almost as much as the smoke. “But…they do work, don’t they?” you ask. “I mean, she’s cooking.”

“They work.” Asa’s voice may be shameful, but she’s absolutely certain. “They work. Trust me.”

“I trust you, my Lady.” A few more seconds of silence pass. “Uh, so. You can steal powers from the dead?”

“We had to!” Asa suddenly says, throwing up her hands. “Mai’te’s tears, how could we not? We’d have died instead of the Dommen if I didn’t get an advantage!”

“My Lady-”

Asa puts up one finger and shakes her head. “Sorry! Sorry. I’m just really nervous.”

“About me?”

“Damn right!” she says, all formality gone from her voice now. “Elsa, what did you see in that nightmare that spooked you so badly? And why did you decide to come out here? You knew perfectly well that two different conspirators have hit teams on you! Not to mention that Soutri is probably following you around the city! And without your bullets, to boot!” she adds, pointing at your waist. “Haret is looking at me like I gave you the keys to the Islands! Vier is…Vier, so she’s quiet, but she’s pissy about losing the vote!”

You pause for a second as you try not to think about those horrible hands gripping your flesh and pulling you into the Soul-purge Falls. “Did you liberate any other abilities from the dead Pantheon members?”

She huffs impatiently at your obvious stall tactic. “Of course we did. How else could we keep the world running? With all the Gods dead, I’m barely keeping the third weather machine intact by myself. If I hadn’t stolen some power, Tarsh would be uninhabitable.”

“Like which?”

“Mind control’s the big one,” she says disgustedly. “Goblin demigods needed that one to get anything done. Little monsters. The one race I don’t miss. The prauns had some bizarre things, too. Illusion projection, and teleportation. Spirelings had that also, I didn’t bother with it.” She turns to look at Newlar, who at least isn’t shivering now. “Stop evading me. Why come out here without telling me?”

>”I thought I could get the advantage of surprise!”
>”We weren’t supposed to fight anyone!”
>”I’ll explain everything in safety!”
”I thought I could get the advantage of surprise!”
Given no vote for "I thought it was a good idea at the time"
“I thought I could get the advantage of surprise!” you say defensively. “Did any of them tell you anything?”

Asa harumphs. “One of the women was an elf, she knew a bit. Hooks was forewarned by the assassin, Forest. She thought Forest was working for Elger Moor.”

“Not Soutri?”

“Whatever Soutri is doing, he’s doing it alone. Hooks hadn’t seen him since the fight in the woods.” Asa shrugs. “They’re not friends. They were among the six priciest mercenaries in the city.”

“Wouldn’t have guessed it from the state of their homes,” you remark cynically. “A shack in the farmlands, a laundry place, and a tannery.”

“All enchanted to repel smells and invaders. Hooks never thought you’d come through the glass.” Asa rubs her eyes as Newlar stirs. “Elsa, please don’t go out without telling me.”

You snort as her words ring a bell. “My actual mother told me that one night. She didn’t do that more than once. I was feral by age nineteen. Always out doing things.”

“Mmm.” Asa lets that sit there for a second before stirring. “Please?”

You sigh. “Yeah, all right.”

Newlar coughs, and a strand of green plops from her mouth onto the carpeting. “Hey, she’s waking up,” you say. “What do I do?”

“Just keep going.” Asa stands and looks around the room. “And get her out of here as soon as she can walk. Shadow or no, she killed three people.”

“Two. Forest got Hooks,” you say.

“He did?” Asa blinks. “I guess Moor doesn’t want loose ends like Feathers. Tell the King to double her guards. Men he can trust.”

“I’ll do that.”

Newlar suddenly shudders and curls up in the fetal position, groaning. “Ah…” she whimpers.

Asa peers down at you. “Do you want me to be here for this? And do you intend to take anything from the room?”

Pick one!
>”I’ll take (X item).
>”I’m just leaving.”
Pick one!
Stay and grab any documents in sight.
Anything worth taking? No coin or bits we can grab quickly that are important, from what I remember. So going might be better idea.
“You can stay,” you say as you focus your energy. Your head is spinning a bit. “Uh, do you see any documents around?”

“You mean, you think there may be notes here that won’t be in Hooks’ memory when Haret pieces through it?”

“Yeah. See anything?”

Asa glances about with those flashing grey eyes. “Yes, in fact. A few binders and a paper folder.”

“Grab them, will you? I’ll take them to the King.”

Asa scoops them up. “Anything else?”

“Money, enchanted weapons, anything I can use,” you manage. The dizziness is getting bad, quickly. “I’m, uh, kinda… swooning, here.”

“It’s the divine healing power. Elves aren’t supposed to channel it.” Asa grabs some small coinpurses and sets them next to the briefcase. “The people outside are trying to get in, Elsa. If you’re going to go, go the instant she wakes up.”

No sooner has Asa said the word than Newlar’s eyes snap open, and she screams. “Ahhhhh! No, keep…Ledren?” She stumbles to her feet as you nearly collapse. “What happened?”
>"Never mind, we're leaving!"
>"Never mind, we're leaving!"
"Explain later. We have to go right now!"
“No time!” you mumble as you climb up. “The… there’s people outside. Grab your stuff, we’re going.”

“But they’ll see us if we leave by the way we came in,” Newlar snaps. “The fire escape might work.”

“Oh, right. I forgot he had one,” you manage. “Ow.”

“Are you hit too?” Newlar demands as she grabs her enchanted dirks.

“It’s not bad, I’m just tired,” you say, waving a hand. “Fire escape. What room?”

“The kitchen! It’s on this floor, just move!” she says. She stops to grab the tiny knives from the second dead woman and stuff them in her belt as you wobble past her.

The kitchen is a mess, with wine spilled on the floor and table, chocolate on the plates, and what looks like a love potion simmering on the stone stove. “If I had more time, I’d help myself to the food,” Newlar mentions as she rips open the far window.


She scoffs. “Well, not the aphrodisiac.” She grabs the handle of a ladder and pushes, and with a squeal of rusted metal, it unfolds from the wall and drops to the ground outside. “Move!”

You grab the top of the ladder and start climbing down as best you can with the world spinning. Newlar just jumps, that incredible armor absorbing the fall with ease. As soon as you reach the bottom, she grabs your collar and hauls. “Go, Ledren! The alley leads into the sewers! We can get anywhere from there!”

The two of you stumble into the back of the reeking alley, where there is indeed a manhole. You hesitate at the truly disgusting stench, but Newlar just slaps a mask from her pocket down onto her face, where it sticks like tarred straw. It folds around her little metal helmet as it hardens. Before you can object, she slaps a handful over your face too.

“What the fuck?” you sputter.

“Breath mask. Just breathe normally,” she commands. “Go, now. After you.”

The twists and turns in the sewers are pitch-black, ruinously slippery, and disgusting with filth. More than once, you have to carefully sidestep some creature or vagrant that have made the place their home. The mask she put on your face hardens like rubber, though. To your surprise, you can breathe as easily as if you were in an arboretum. The binder and folder you grabbed bump against your leg with every step.

“Wish we had this stuff in the Auxilia,” you remark.

“For what? You do a lot of fighting in the sewers?” Newlar snipes. She’s been getting increasingly angry as you make your way through the tunnels, and you can’t yet tell why.

“No, but have you ever been on a battlefield with two thousand dead men?” you shoot back. “Bowels open when the soul moves out.”

“I did my time in the Legion,” the Shadow reminds you.

Finally, the two of you enter a four-way intersection where two culverts intersect. Above, a glimmer of starlight peeks through a grate. You pause and rest your hands on your knees, panting. “Ugh. Think we’re far enough?”

“To not be overheard, yeah,” Newlar says.

You freeze. Something in her tone is very worrying. “Newlar?”

“This won’t hurt.”

You start to straighten up when her forearm suddenly slams into your throat, pinning you to the crumbling brick behind you in a heartbeat. Before you even have time to gasp, she has your dagger in her free hand. “Now, we will talk a bit,” she whispers. “Just talk. Nobody gets hurt.”

“Let me go!” you growl, but her response is another bit of pressure against your exposed neck.

“Why am I alive?” she asks flatly. “That was Bloodrot poison on that arrow. There’s no cure. I know. I’ve used it. Why am I alive?”

>”You could have just asked!”
>”I’m not telling you!”
>”Swear to silence or you get nothing.”

>”You could have just asked!”
"I healed you. I thought you didn't want to ask why he was being surveilled? You could have asked at any point and I'd have told you. Are you asking now?"
>”You could have just asked!”
You cough as she presses against your windpipe. “Why not just ask?” you demand.

She scowls. “I can’t trust you any more.”

Her arm is a bar of iron across your throat. “All right, fine! Let me go, and I’ll tell you.”

“You’ll run.”

“Where?!” you snarl. “It’s a sewer! I’m completely lost!”

After a second, she steps back. You double over, choking for air. “F-fucking Shadow,” you cough. “If I wanted you dead, you would be!”

She grabs your shoulder and rams your dagger back into its sheath in one fast movement. “Likewise. Now that you’re done reasserting your dick length, tell me why I’m not dead.”

“Because Asa likes you,” you snap.

Whatever she was expecting, it wasn’t that. She shakes her head. “Talk sense.”

“I am!” you insist. “Asa healed me, and I healed you!”

“There is no magic that can heal poison! It’s why we use it!” she insists. “It would be useless otherwise!”

You cross your arms over your chest and glare at the other woman. “Gods operate on their own plane.”

She’s silent for a moment behind her ugly mask. She isn’t wearing her full crystal mask now, and it’s odd to see how little its absence diminishes her appearance. “So Asa owed you a favor?” she asks.

“Something like that.”

“How did she know what was happening?”

“The whores. One of them was an elf.”

“Oh, yeah.” She taps a finger on her belt, thinking. “And the poison?”

“Demigods can heal poison.”

“You said YOU did it.”

“She gave me that ability,” you say carefully. “It won’t work every time.”

She glares at the world. “There’s more here. You’re hiding something.”

“Yeah, I am. I bet you are too.” You gesture up at the grate. “So can we go now?”

“No.” Newlar points a finger back the way you came. “Why was he under watch?”

“You said you wouldn’t ask.”

“I said I didn’t want to have to. Now I do.”

“No, you don’t,” you retort. “If you must know, though, he was one of the guys who targeted my people in the woods.”

She recoils a bit. “You’re Second Home?”


“Oh.” She hesitates, then pulls her other hand from behind her back, where she had had an alchemic grenade hidden in her palm. “That explains it. Asa would want to keep an eye on that.”

“Did you have that the whole time?” you demand.

“Yeah, but it’s a Rope Bomb, not a weapon.” She flips it into the air and it explodes, scattering ten-foot lengths of rope everywhere, mostly in the putrid water. “Useless in a fight. Anyway. Let’s go.”

“And you say I can’t be trusted,” you grunt.

“I still don’t.” She quickly pieces together the rope into a ladder and attaches one of her grappling hooks. “All right. Hang on.”

After a few throws, she latches onto the grate, and the two of you climb out. The streets above are deserted at four in the morning, which is good, because you’re both bloody reeking after your march. She takes off without a word, and you follow. The road to the castle is clear, and you follow her into the parade ground without problem. The Guards at the barracks wave you right through – apparently Shadows get up to some weird shit at night.

Inside, Newlar stops you before you can duck into the shower. “Ledren. Look…I’m sorry. I just don’t like the feeling of being out of control.”

“Who does?” you ask wearily.

“I mean it. When I realized that was Bloodrot…” her face twists behind the mask. “I thought I was going to die.”

>”I understand.”
>”Just keep your trap shut.”

>”I understand.”
You wipe irritably at the tarry mask. “I understand. I’ve been there. I didn’t think I’d make it back from that ambush in the woods, either.”

“Yeah.” She notices your struggle. “It’s just magic rubber. Grab the edges and pull.”

You grip the corners and tug, and it slowly peels free, with a sound like rending fabric. “Oh, gross!”

“It’s not fun.” She looks at you oddly for a moment, then shrugs. “Well. I need to go. See you later, I’m sure.”

“Yeah. Thanks for the help.”

She sketches a salute – odd, since a member of the Legion automatically outranks Auxilia like you – and vanishes into the stairs up to her own barracks.

You enter the women’s showers in the Auxilia barracks and shuck your damaged clothes. The hot, steamy relief of the shower soothes the ache in your muscles and cleanses the ugly smells of the sewers.

You let the water run down over your body and think. Five down. Eight to go. The guy in the farm is probably your best bet. He’s a mage, and they’re tough. Getting him out of the way could be huge.

You massage some soap into your face to get the last lingering bit of rubber off the corners of your mouth. It tastes like uncooked squid, which is just wrong. Why is it that they can enchant blocks of stone to last unchanged in fire and water, but can’t make a breath mask taste like strawberry or something?

Footsteps from the entrance of the cavernous room catch your ear as the only other woman there finishes drying and walks out. You have the room to yourself. You stretch out and enjoy the rare luxury – a house-sized shower to yourself.

Roll 1d100+4.
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Rolled 37 + 4

And I need to get this out before shit happens. When we go check out the next person, even if it's not the mage, if we intend to raid the place we go in with an entire magic SWAT team. Not Elsa and 1 Shadow who was given absolutely no info on what to expect.
Rolled 75 + 4

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I did a thing
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After a long soak, you wander over to your clothes on their peg in the corner. You stretch out the shirt and grimace. It’s a loss, a total loss. Maybe you can replace it with the money from Hooks?

You chuck it in a purloined trash bag after running it under the water to wash the shit and blood off. In go the pants, too, and the rest of your gear and outfit. You struggle into an Auxilia uniform from the shelf and hike upstairs into the residential area, then through that to the guest quarters.

By the time you get up to the suite you were originally assigned, it’s nearly seven in the morning. The sun’s not up yet, but the birds are out singing, and life is starting to stir in the huge castle. You slip into your chambers and tiptoe into your bedroom.

There’s Jerome, right where you left him. He’s even still got his arms out where you climbed out when you left last night. Smiling fondly, you drop your wet clothes across chair backs in the well-appointed suite and snuggle back where you had been.

You rest your head on his arm and let his warmth lull you into a doze.


As your weary eyes drift across the little room, the very dim light of the room casts funny shadows across the wall. You play a sleepy little game, trying to imagine what’s casting which shadow, when you spot the black bandana you had been wearing all night.

There’s a hole in it. Not a big one, but it’s there. Right… in the middle.

Oh. That’s what that tearing sound was when you were taking off the mask.

Newlar saw your brand and gem. That’s why she saluted.


>let it go until later
>ask Asa what to do
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She's a Shadow, loyal to the king and all that, no need to panic about it.
Unless she's a mole and the entire point of this day was to kill Hooks before we talked to him!!

But, probably not. We can use her again if we need more Shadow help. She'll be less likely to dive into suicide missions like tonight if she knows the level of what's going on now. Given that we were the person who did know just how dangerous that situation was we should probably apologize for just following her and not stopping her.

Should tell Asa anyway though.
>let it go until later
There's nothing you can do about it now. Tell Asa about it, but nothing else unless Asa recommends it.
do >>32909709

Also it looks like we graduated from me being the only voter. Yay!
You carefully wriggle a hand free of Jerome’s sleeping arms and press your gem. {Uh, Lady Asa? I think Newlar figured out what I am.]

Silence. You frown. {My Lady?}

[…Battle in the south… out of control… have to maintain focus… ghosts clawing at the veil of reality… chat later…] Her voice shudders with pain in every word.

{Can I help?}

[…I wish… you could… my beloved daughter… don’t care… about Shadow… she’ll keep her mouth shut… trust the King…]

Then the gem goes cold.

Progress: A
Combat: F
Improv: B+

Well, that’s over with. You rolled a nightmare in the last thread, and a pretty serious scar. So, no powers unlocked because of your divine dreams, but you got an End of Level power anyway, and your Improv score was above average, so it’s a pretty powerful one.

In terms of Progress, you accomplished quite a lot. You recruited some dudes, survived an assassination or two, relocated, got your family to safety, got laid, got the King back on your side, made friends with Vier, unlocked not one, but TWO powers, and put Master Sun on the problem of the shielded city in the sky. You also found out that in all probability, there’s more than one Orb, and you managed to get intel out of Feathers without killing her. I’m impressed!

In terms of combat? You lost the fight in BOTH assassination attempts. The first time was just shitty dice, the second was shitty planning. Poor show.

Improv: Solid! Oddly, both of the namefags who were good at improv in the early threads seem to have vanished, so this will be harder if you don’t learn to improvise better.

Next chapter, you need to line up more conspirators and figure out why they seem to be working at cross-purposes, hiring so many assassins and not telling each other. Their communication seems to be shot, for some reason, and you need to figure out why before you proceed.
Don't get me wrong, though. Your improv was good this thread, too, despite missing two regulars. I'm sure your score will stay up with planning!
I didn't think last thread was bad planning, things just turned out badly. It was never the plan to go in with just two people, that only happened because we got spotted. Bringing more people on a spying mission just increases the chances of getting noticed too.

Okay, the God Gem being cold could be really bad. On the other hand, you clearly still exist, so Asa’s probably just busy. You can try again later.

Jerome stirs a bit in your arms, pulling your attention back. He opens his eyes a crack and smiles. “‘Mornin’, cutie.”

“Morning,” you whisper.

“Didn’t think I’d see you,” he murmurs. “Needin’ only two hours sleep. You know.”

“I’ve gone and come back,” you let him know. You lean up and nuzzle his cheek. “Did I wake you?”

“Nuh uh.” He closes his eyes again and rests his lips against your forehead. “You smell good. Take a shower?”


“Mmm. I probably need one.” He runs his hand back down your flank and grins. “Think we wrecked the sheets last night?”

You have to think back; ‘last night’ is closer for him than you. “Hee hee. No, we didn’t.”

Jerome squeezes his hand on your muscled back and chuckles. “Not for lack of trying. Thanks.”

“My pleasure, you’ll recall.”

“Heh.” He draws in a long, slow breath, just enjoying the feeling of you. “Yeah…we don’t wake up together enough any more.”

“Been a while.”

“Fifty…eight days.”

“You remember?”

“Muster, training…marching. Your new sleep powers…fifty eight.”

You blush in the darkness. “You count the days.” He’s just too adorable.


Minutes tick by. Some more. He stirs again. “Gotta bathe. Get some food.”

“Okay.” You let him roll aside and slowly unfurl from the bed. You pounce on his warm spot and snuggle under the sheets as he takes stock of the room.

His voice is puzzled when he talks. “What’s with the clothes?”

“Stealth mission.” You tug the sheets up to your chin and relax. “Got sticky. Had to change.”

“Is this…a slug hole?” he asks, poking your shirt.

“Arrow. I’m fine.”

“What happened?”

>tell all
>dismiss it
>use divine power (if you dare)
Rolled 6 + 4


>>dismiss it
>Tell some
"Ambushed another mercenary, Hooks, with a Shadow. Took an arrow, but Hooks was killed and Asa healed me."
Give a general explanation. Recon turned into an attack when backup spotted us, got hit with an arrow, Hooks was killed by his own backup.

Leave the nearly dying to poison bit out.
Maybe he doesn’t need to know QUITE how close to dying you were. He’s already scared on your behalf.

The truth is the best lie. “Well, I was chasing a lead on another conspirator when I got spotted. The spotter shot me, but Asa healed me, and the Shadow I was with killed the conspirator,” you tell him. “I’m fine. The Shadow’s fine. The spotter ran.”

“Is this the asshole who threatened us?” Jerome says darkly.

“No, this was one of the lower-ranking guys. Asa took care of everything.”

“Is that what this is?” he asks, pointing at the bags of money and paper. “Their stuff?”

“Yeah. Evidence for the King. Maybe we can round up some more guys without having to fight,” you say. “That would be nice.”

Your husband looks away. “I’ll say,” Jerome says. He turns back to you. “Can I see the scar?”

“Sure.” He leans over you and pulls the sheets away, searching your body for new marks.

“Oh…sweetheart,” he sighs. “That’s bad.”

Sure enough, the scar over the wound Forest gave you isn’t quite healed entirely. Probably won’t heal on its own, either, since the healing Asa gave you before didn’t heal scars you already had, like the ones on your arms and chin and collarbone. “It’s not so bad,” you insist. “I’m fine!”

“I know.” He sounds resigned. He runs his hand over your chest and traces the outline of the hole with his finger. “You’re a tough little thing even without Asa helping you. I just wish you didn’t have to get hurt.”


After a while, he sits up. “All right. So…what do you plan on doing today? It’s a weekend, none of us have work.”

>Covertly contact Arisa
>Meet with the King
>Meet with Garren
>Meet with Culler
>Meet with Haret (somehow) to get the package
>Recce Kerry Ding

>Note: at some point, you have to do ALL of these things. What order you do them in is entirely up to you.
>Meet with Haret (somehow) to get the package

This is probably top priority. Don't want him making any more tornadoes.
>>Meet with the King, arrange for someone(Newlar if she's up to it, probably not) to recce Ding, DO NOT APPROACH
>>Covertly contact Arisa, find out what damage we did being terribly obvious
>>Meet with Haret (somehow) to get the package and find out how bad of a deal he suckered us into. Use those exact words. SUCKERED INTO
“I should really go see the Avatars and ask what to do next,” you say. “Haret especially. I need to see the King…drop off those papers…then start collecting intelligence on the next conspirator.”

“Yeah…” Jerome pauses. “Uh, Lord Haret’s not still mad, is he?”

“Apparently not.”

“Mmm.” Your husband struggles for words. “Look, is he always that… I don’t know the right word here… uh, capricious? Is that it?”

Vier’s words float through your mind. “No…I think he’s just feeling angry about this whole mess. If it were up to him, I don’t think things would have happened this way.”

“Hmph.” Jerome pulls on a robe and walks up next to the bed. “All right. I’ll get cleaned up, then you can show me where to eat in this place.”

You smile as he playfully squeezes your leg. “Sure.”

As he disappears into the bathroom, you hear sounds of life from the other bedrooms. The family is waking up, safe and sound.

That’s worth a few scars.

[Temporary End of Thread]

All right! I’m off to sleep. If the thread is still here tomorrow, I’ll run through Sunday night.

I'll keep her floating for yeh.
Character sheet updated with new power!
It's not just humans?
No, it works on anybody. Asa can't heal people if she doesn't have an Avatar physically present.

Most actresses are like that. It's the quality of their acting that counts.
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Trouble on the set! The actress who plays Elsa really trained for those scenes. It's not HER fault! Or so she claims. But really, she is a bit of a prima-donna when not on screen. Sheesh!

Is SE the one at the camera?
I wish!
Nah he is off camera, yelling at a intern for his coffee.

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