Last time, On Status Quo Quest: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Status%20Quo%20QuestThread Six: https://archive.moe/tg/thread/39197860/Twitter: https://twitter.com/QuestBakerYou trail after Alheid, equal parts concerned and curious as to how this is going to go. Ulrike is the only one you haven't met yet, and with Alheid in this kind of mood, you're not entirely sure she'll be introducing you any time soon if you just let her go. Silke meets your eyes, as you glance back into the kitchen on your way out, and grins at you, with a shrug.She storms past Sieglinde, and kicks in the door you had been told led to the 'crystal room', slamming it against the wall. "ULRIKE!" There's the sound of something breaking at the bottom of the stairs. "WHAT DID YOU DO? DO YOU HAVE! ANY! IDEA! HOW MUCH WORK I PUT INTO THAT CAKE?!"You follow her down the stairs, and into what is, quite clearly, the 'Crystal Room'. Every flat surface of the room has crystalline formations growing through and out of them, some crossing the room entirely to pierce another wall, or the ceiling. In the center of the room, a particularly clear crystal formation is slowly losing its glow, and a pale woman is meeting Alheid's glare with a glare of her own."...You startled me." She accuses, and mildness of her voice only makes it even more worrying."And you did something with my cake!" Alheid fires back. "Where is it?">Stay quiet.>Break it up.>Defuse.
>>40707484>>Defuse.Disarm the bomb!
>>40707484>She's talking about the first cake, the one that disappears whenever she looks at it.
"So, you're Ulrike?" You move forward, into the room, hoping to head off the confrontation. "I've heard quite a lot about you!" You try to stay warm and positive. It helps ease people's anger, you think. Not that you really have any experience in the matter.She blinks, and stares at you."...You're awake?" She looks away, at one of the crystals near the ceiling. "...I wasn't expecting this. Isn't it too early? Sir Veit was so sure..." She seems a bit uncomfortable and confused. Alheid, meanwhile, has transferred her glare to you, as though demanding an explanation."...The cake vanishes when YOU look at it." You tell her, flat-out, and... well, you can't help but enjoy the gobsmacked expression on her face before she charges back up the stairs, probably to go yell at someone else - it seemed like she knew who did it.Ulrike frowns. "After a thousand years..." She says, slowly, eyeing you carefully. "You're finally free." She takes a few steps closer, leaving her near a particularly short formation of crystals, clustered on the wall. "...Now what do you plan to do?">I...don't know.>Isn't it obvious?>Meet Sir Veit, for now.>...?
>>40709572>>Meet Sir Veit, for now.>I don't remember much, you see.
>>40709572>>40709643Sounds good, seconding
"You know," You scratch your head, "I've been thinking I'd like to meet with Sir Veit." You smile. "I don't remember much, you see. I understand he's in the best position to fill me in on it." Her jaw drops, just slightly, but she can't seem to find words."...I wasn't expecting this either." She says, turning to the side. She growls, softly. "What's going on, today?" She mutters, apparently to herself. She looks over to you again. "...He should be back soon." She tells you. "I guess. If nothing else goes strange." She frowns. "I shouldn't have said that." "Ulrike! Ulrike!" And down the staircase flies Hannelore, looking worried. "I can't..." And then she sees you, and almost swallows her tongue. Ulrike waits, patiently, but when the floating woman shows no signs of continuing, she sighs."It's fine, Hannelore. Just say it." The woman shots you a nervous look, before speaking, much more quietly."I, um, I can't find Seffi." She murmurs, watching you carefully, for some reason. You just nod, though. "She came into the lounge after you... left." You explain. "Alheid accidentally knocked one of her arms off, when she opened a door, so she wanted Sieglinde to fix it." You don't need to go into too much detail. "I think she upset Sieglinde or something, because she ran off pretty soon after that.""...Oh." The quiet, ethereal woman seems relieved. "...I was worried she'd gone outside." Ulrike frowns."Even Seffi wouldn't go out alone." She says, before hesitating. "...Probably.">Why is going outside such a problem?>Head back upstairs.>Could you tell me about this room?>...?
>>40711766>Could you tell me about this room?
>>40711766>Could you tell me about this room?and >Why is going outside such a problem?Because bad guys? Good guys?
>>40711766>Why is going outside such a problem?
"Why is going outside such a problem?" You ask, curiously. Both of the women turn to look at you, surprised, perhaps, that you don't already know."I suppose you wouldn't know, about it." Ulrike acknowledges, after a moment. "If Seffi or Jana were to go out into the sunlight, they would - probably - die." She explains, very bluntly. "It would be very bad for them, no matter what.""...And even if they came back before the sun came up." Hannelore joins the explanation, "It wouldn't be good if someone followed them. Jana would probably be able to getaway, but Seffi..." Ulrike shakes her head."Sir Veit has been very clear." She says. "It would be bad if people knew we were here." The pale woman frowns. "Even if he hasn't told us why, exactly. Just that your enemies are still around." That's certainly not infuriatingly vague."I see." You acknowledge. It's certainly something to discuss with the man. ...Even if he's probably not actually a man, now that you think about it. They don't live a thousand years, after all. "What about this room?" They seem surprised by the question, so you elaborate. "I mean, these crystals, all of it. What is it for? Was it always like this?" Ulrike hesitates before she answers."Well..." She draws the word out. "I suppose someone must have built it." She allows. "It's older than I am, though. Perhaps Sir Veit, or whoever constructed the original catacombs." She stroke one of the crystals near her, and it begins to glow with a soft inner light. "As for its purpose..." The woman smiles, so slight as to be almost unnoticeable. "These crystals are highly magically active. They allow me to do quite a lot. Scrying with these crystals is simplicity itself, and Sieglinde can use them for her work. Since they grow here, we can afford to harvest them for her every so often." She eyes you, as Hannelore seems content to just watch the two of you talk. "Do you, perhaps, have any other questions?"
>Yes, about...>>The seven of you.>>You, personally.>>Someone in particular. [Name]>>These tunnels and corridors.>>The Children.>Not Really.>...?----------------------------I need to get a little sleep, and then I'll be out for a couple hours to tend to some family business that came up.I'll be back in less than 8 hours, though, and things can speed up. Sometimes it feels like the more confident I am nothing will go wrong in a weekend, the more certain it is that it will.
>>40709572>Ahhhhh, after a thousand years I'm finally free! Time to conquer the known world!
>>40714650>Yes, about...>The seven of you.>The Children
>>40714650>Yes, about...>The Children
>>40714650>>Yes, about...>>>The seven of you.>>The Children.
>>40714650>>Yes, about...>>>The seven of you.>>>The Children.
"Actually..." You say, "I did have a couple more." She nods, as though she expected it, and seats herself on a thick crystal, gesturing for you to continue. "About the children..." You trail off as Ulrike makes a face. It's not a happy one."Yes, about the children." She repeats. "What were planning to do about them?" You frown, uncertainly, as she takes the opportunity to ask a question of you, instead."...Do about them?" You ask, uncertainly. "Well, nothing, really. They seem to be happy with you all, and as I understand it, at least some of you return their feelings. What needs to be 'done about them'?" She relaxes, at this."I see." She murmurs. "Alheid was showing you around, correct? I'm sure she already discussed the food situation with you?" You confirm it, and she continues with a nod. "There are other problems. Human children need fresh air and sunlight to be healthy - or so I've read - and we can't provide either here." She hesitates. "...Although, with the diet we have to provide, that might not continue to be an issue for long. I suppose I could prevent any real problems from cropping up, should it come to that, but...""What do you mean, 'it might not continue to be an issue'?" You demand, suddenly very concerned. She seems a little taken aback, before realising what you were thinking. "Oh, no, nothing like that." She shakes her head. "I simply meant that they might not remain human." You have no idea how to react. "Between myself and Sieglinde, of course, we can manage the changes without too much issue, but we can't delay it for very much longer - as humans, they're running out of time. Another two months, at best, before they begin to change. I've almost reached the limit of my not-inconsiderable abilities, delaying things as long as I have, and unless something changes..." She shrugs. "Sieglinde and I can guide it to stability, and it would be relatively painless with us to watch over them, but...">What?>What?!>...as humans? What?>...?
Apparently family issues include copious amounts of alcohol. Damn it.Anyway, I'm here, I can type, and I'm not in danger of falling over, so let's try and get things advancing.>Select all the ice cream>Options are bacon, prosciutto, a couple kinds of tacos, and coffeeCAPTCHA WHY>Select food>Beer, rocks, statuesTHIS IS NOT HELPING
>>40728845>...as humans? What?>Where can we go to secure a supply of human food?
>>40728845>Is it....important, to be human?>Is it a matter of giving them a chance to grow up, because then we should totally get them some human needs.
>>40728845>Is it....important, to be human?>Is it a matter of giving them a chance to grow up, because then we should totally get them some human needs.The companion was a Demon Lord all along, kek.
"Is it..." You're not sure you really understand. "Is it important, somehow, to be human?" Ulrike stares at you, searchingly. "Would they...not get a chance to grow up or something?" She doesn't reply. "What is the problem?" Finally, she sighs."You're serious." She says, mostly to herself. "...Well, it's not a huge problem." She says, in the end. "Some of them might not be able to go back out to live in human society, though. If they stabilise with minor changes, maybe, but..." She seems doubtful. "If I jumpstart the process, I might be able to reduce some of the severity, but...I can't guarantee that they'll all come out of this as even simple demi-humans." It's not exactly a decision that should be made for them. Or, even, for Alheid, and their caretakers."What do the others think?" You ask, but Ulrike just looks away. "...Ulrike?" A few more moments of silence, before you sigh, rubbing a hand over your eyes. "Do they even know?""No." She murmurs. "I've been urging that something needs to be done, but...I haven't explained. There's nothing we can do about it, not in here - the souls that came apart here make sure of it." At your questioning glance, she elaborates. "Well, normally, humans don't have any problem with excess magical power. It's just not something they need to worry about. But...what's left of those souls, that's a bit more of a problem." She thinks for a moment. "It's hard to explain precisely why, but over time, the soul remnants build up in humans, and cause them to change. Without someone like me to oversee the process, not only is it incredibly dangerous, it's also very painful and unstable." She frowns. "And I can only stabilise the process, to make it safe, and painless. It would take quite a bit of experimentation to learn how to guide it, and that would require test subjects." You nod. And not only aren't there any, the whole experimenting on people thing wouldn't be good either.
"That's not to say they'd become monstrous, of course." She hastens to reassure you. "Simply inhuman. Similar to some of the races found in distant parts of the world, such as the raksha, or lamias." She shakes her head. "But if they continue to live here in the catacombs, there's not much that can be done to prevent it.""That's..." You sigh, heavily. "That's something we really need to talk about. Also, not telling anyone. That's a problem too." She shakes her head."...I had certain concerns." She says, "But now that you have awakened, I suppose I won't need to worry about it further. Would you like to discuss it with the others now, or...?>Wait until after the party, at least. Don't ruin the mood.>There's two months left. It can wait a while.>We can discuss it among ourselves now, at least.>...?
>>40733393>Wait until after the party, at least. Don't ruin the mood.Besides, we still to meet this Sir Veit first.
>>40733393>Wait until after the party, at least. Don't ruin the mood.
>>40733393>Let's wait for Sir Veit, first.
"Not right away." You shake your head. "There's that party they want to have, right? Let's not spoil the mood." She nods, looking a bit relieved to hear that. "For now, when should Sir Zeit arrive?" She considers for a moment, her brows drawing together as she thinks. "If I recall, he is some away. Several hours." She hesitates, "Which is probably for the best. It will give us a chance to get the party over and done with, at least. When he arrives, he will certainly want to speak with you immediately, and that is when we can begin to resolve this sort of business." She sighs deeply, looking somehow tired. "Hopefully we'll figure this out." "Right," you agree confidently, with a firm nod. "We'll work it out, no problem." After all, no matter what choice everyone makes, they all have each other. And you'll be there to help them out, along the way. "I did have a couple more questions, though." You add, "About the seven of you." Ulrike raises an eyebrow, which you interpret as an invitation to proceed. "Alheid mentioned that none of you need to eat?" She nods."None of us need to breathe, either, nor do we need to drink." You nod, thoughtfully, and she elaborates. "Hannelore, Jana, and Amalie all lack a physical body, and Sieglinde, Seffi, and I are technically... well, corpses." She shrugs. "Sieglinde is the only one who can feel hunger, and even that doesn't mean anything. She can eat more than her own mass at a single sitting, and not bloat in the slightest." Ulrike glances idly over at a softly glowing crystal, and then back to you. "Her hunger is merely her nature.">Her nature? What do you mean?>Corpses?>What about Alheid? You left her out.>...?-----------------------------I need to get some sleep, so I'll be back in about eight or nine hours with an update before work. Sorry.
>>40736725>>Her nature? What do you mean?
>>40736725>>40736725>You don't need to "replenish" corpses....do you?>What about Alheid? You left her out.
>>40736725>Her nature? What do you mean?
>>40736725>Her nature? What do you mean?>What about Alheid? You left her out.
>>40736725>>What about Alheid? You left her out.
"Her nature? What do you mean?" You ask, curiously. "Well, each of us have certain natural traits." Ulrike explains, "They shape us, a little - I have my magic, Sieglinde has her hunger and some lesser magic of her own, Seffi is...well, a skeleton." She shrugs, seeming almost embarrassed by that. "Our abilities are pretty variable. Amalie and Hannelore can pass through the walls, but Jana gets rebuffed by the runes, and Sieglinde can pass through natural stone, but not walls. Things like that." She chews her lip. "I haven't had the opportunity to prepare my notes for presentation to someone else." Ulrike looks away, "If you give me a few days, I can have it ready to explain." "That's fine, that's fine. I don't want to make trouble for you." She just nods, before changing tracks."As for Alheid..." Ulrike thinks about that for a moment, "She's a little different. She's closer to an actual spirit, like Hannelore is. They're a little more..." She hesitates. "...Conceptual?" She frowns. "...This is difficult. I haven't had to explain these things, before.""Take your time." You reassure her. "It's fine."
More when I get home. This one's a bit long.
I'm sorry, I'm going to have to end the thread. Someone died, and it's going to be a few days before I'll be ready to write again.I might get a thread up at the usual time, at the end of the week.