PRELUDE - Beyond the jewelled isles of the Thalassarchy of Galerne, all that separates the conqueror from the vanquished is the Dreamsend Sea. From its slumbering depths that mock the stars and skies the sea plays with the desires of men like pearls, casts fleets as driftwood against the barbarous cliffs of Langkasuk, and roars with the wild anguish of nations.
From the highest vantage of the Sea Observatory, the Hariolat's Tower, one finds pleasure in sitting at ease - with hand braced against the balustrade - and gazing at those thrown against the blustering winds. Which Stranger do you see upon the shore?
>The BARBARIANSinew and bone have taught you what can be torn from the world. You speak to the shadows of beasts and the ancestors of men. Those who built the Tower will learn that stones hewn from the earth can be brought back down again.Best: StrengthWorst: CharmMagick: NoOutcast(the Elders and their superstitions warned you against profaning the earth, and dealing with the Men Of Chains - perhaps you should preserve the old ways, and touch nothing here that is not wood, bone or flesh? But the Elders have been wrong before. What sort of barbarian would you be without a sword...?)>The GOVERNESSThe pleasures of your instruction do not always evince of their propriety, but a demure living must nonetheless be sought somewhere. How disgraceful it is to be ignorant and idle! And who is it that is employing you yet again...?Best: WillGood: InstinctPoor: CharmWorst: StrengthMagick: MaybeLowborn>The PRIVATEERThe diplomacy of Galerne is best conducted with the cannon. Now if the Courts were to examine your Letter Of Marque And Reprisal, you would probably hang. Navigating between treasure and treason just requires the allegiance of a good war.Good: Instinct, CharmWorst: WillMagick: NoOutcast, Lowborn(Your honour may be negotiable, but you are definitely not a pirate. Not one of those... Witch-Pirates of Vourukasha. You have never even met any of them! And they absolutely did not steal your galleon.)
>The LIBERTINEThere are two kinds of love: that which commands, and that which obeys. Only the timid are moved by the semblance of suffering - your temperament savours its passions and throes as a delicacy. When you see yourself you know that youth and beauty remain eternal.Best: CharmPoor: Strength, WillMagick: MaybeHighborn(You collect jewels and paintings, and exquisite playthings. At times you find it hard to leave your palace, for you insist upon the old decorum of being invited before making an entrance. You might make an exception though, for one particular treasure...)>The OUTLAW-MONKBetween the coiling blossoms there are tiger claws and the burning fangs of serpents, writhing and painted on your skin. You are not so drunk and fat-headed yet to have forgotten your sworn panther-brother. You will find him.Best: InstinctGood: (when inebriated) Strength, WillPoor: CharmMagick: NEVEROutcast, Lowborn(how dismayed your venerable teachers at the Gunpowder Monastery would be, if they could see you now. They will never teach you their secret alchemy, but you prefer to meditate with you fists instead)>The SIBYLThe fletrissure, the hierodulic brand, ensures that those who see beyond cannot speak of it. From the Cradle you walked this land - before wheel, axe and fire, before the flood itself. The visions that live within you will endure and outlast even death.Good: Will, CharmPoor: StrengthWorst: InstinctMagick: YES(???)(Perhaps this world seems familiar to you, and you have been here before?The Consort>>5054156The Eschatonomist>>5058514The Beggar-Knight>>5066246The Preceptor>>5073497https://archive.wakarimasen.moe/qst/thread/5054156/https://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/2021/5054156/)
One sec, catching up.
>>5094513>The SIBYLI guess I'll vote for the same thing in order to speed things along, though it isn't my preference.
>>5094565No worries, you can still let me know what you secretly prefer ^_^I can leave the initial character choice open for a while, unless players really want to rush in... heheso the Sibyl perhaps looks like (pic related). Maybe this is just a beguilement though, if you really want, you can be an old crone...
I'm guessing from the description the Sibyl is a slave-prophetess with some sort of unique brand who apparently either lived multiple lives or can see so far back into the past that she remembers the world before the wheel, axes or fire was invented and before some sort of biblical flood. Maybe some sort of essence transfer based on the last line.I wonder if this world is Berceuse before it was conquered and the Sibyl is a character we are already familiar with or she is just reliving some past life from the present or something.
>>5094577I like all the character concepts and I would normally play a magic-user in tabletop RPGs but we had the best run with the Beggar-Knight last time and the 2nd best with the Eschatonomist, so the Outlaw Monk, the Barbarian, and the Privateer appeal to me the most due to familiarity and a bias towards past success.That being said, trying previously unplayed character concepts would be novel and a nice change of pace, since we never got to play the body-hopping dude or the Marotte, and some of the playthroughs didn't reach their full potential.
The SIBYL possesses the following items: (choose TWO only)
>Heirloom Scissorsconcealed, swift, weakOrnate scissor-dagger embellished with fine cabochon gems; the gilt handles are now worn and the bladed shears tarnished. Best kept for embroidery, mending tapestries and cutting threads.
>Tarot DeckHand-painted tarocchi of an ancient Duke, once a popular Highborn pastime, now forgotten. There should be 78 cards, but 4 are missing: the Three Of Swords, The Knight Of Coins, XV: The Devil, XVI: The Tower.
>SeashellIt appears to be an ordinary seashell, though not from these shores. You have heard some Langkasuk islanders use cowrie shells as currency. When you place it against your ear you can hear the echoing sea.
>OrbSome mischievous charlatans like to ponder and gaze at them - you will do no such thing, of course. The savants and natural philosophers of the Observatory have mounted them in arrays to illuminate the fires of heaven, to follow the celestial path of the astral gyre.
>>5094943>Heirloom Scissors>OrbI'm going to sleep now. Good luck anons, make good choices.
(roll 1d78. There should be a way of doing this by cross-referencing a 13d6 lookup table, but 1d78 should work. Could also just roll 1d100 and re-roll 79-100, but just 1d78 should be easier)01 I: The MAGICIAN02 II: The HIGH PRIESTESS03 III: The EMPRESS04 IV: The EMPEROR05 V: The HIEROPHANT06 VI: The LOVERS07 VII: The CHARIOT08 VIII: STRENGTH09 IX: The HERMIT10 X: The WHEEL of FORTUNE11 XI: JUSTICE12 XII: The HANGED MAN13 XIII: DEATH14 XIV: TEMPERANCE15 XV: The DEVIL16 XVI: The TOWER17 XVII: The STAR18 XVIII: The MOON19 XIX: The SUN20 XX: JUDGEMENT21 XXI: The WORLD22 0: The FOOL23 ACE of SWORDS24 TWO of SWORDS25 THREE of SWORDS26 FOUR of SWORDS27 FIVE of SWORDS28 SIX of SWORDS29 SEVEN of SWORDS30 EIGHT of SWORDS31 NINE of SWORDS32 TEN of SWORDS33 PAGE of SWORDS34 KNIGHT of SWORDS35 QUEEN of SWORDS36 KING of SWORDS37 ACE of CHALICES38 TWO of CHALICES39 THREE of CHALICES40 FOUR of CHALICES41 FIVE of CHALICES42 SIX of CHALICES43 SEVEN of CHALICES44 EIGHT of CHALICES45 NINE of CHALICES46 TEN of CHALICES47 PAGE of CHALICES48 KNIGHT of CHALICES49 QUEEN of CHALICES50 KING of CHALICES51 ACE of PENTACLES52 TWO of PENTACLES53 THREE of PENTACLES54 FOUR of PENTACLES55 FIVE of PENTACLES56 SIX of PENTACLES57 SEVEN of PENTACLES58 EIGHT of PENTACLES59 NINE of PENTACLES60 TEN of PENTACLES61 PAGE of PENTACLES62 KNIGHT of PENTACLES63 QUEEN of PENTACLES64 KING of PENTACLES65 ACE of WANDS66 TWO of WANDS67 THREE of WANDS68 FOUR of WANDS69 FIVE of WANDS70 SIX of WANDS71 SEVEN of WANDS72 EIGHT of WANDS73 NINE of WANDS74 TEN of WANDS75 PAGE of WANDS76 KNIGHT of WANDS77 QUEEN of WANDS78 KING of WANDS
Rolled 34 (1d78)>>5095374
>>509538634 KNIGHT of SWORDS
You are soaring with the joy of a caged bird that has been freed. Through the sunlight and verdant canopy of leaves veined in green and gold you see drifting motes of what resembles dandelion seeds floating between the vines. A pair of iridescent butterflies spiral and weave through pillars of moss and flowers.There is a hammering at the door of your bedchamber. You can hear the voice of a young man:Mistress Of Fortune - I must speak with you. I cannot wait any longer. It is a matter of Life and Death!>Ignore the voice, and stay amongst the trees>Raise the Orb to your eye and examine the heavens>Rise and walk to your balcony. Take a look outside at the winding path that leads to your abode, and examine the cove and causeway below.>Open the door and see who is outside
>>5095427>Rise and walk to your balcony. Take a look outside at the winding path that leads to your abode, and examine the cove and causeway below.
You rise unsteadily into the dim light of morning. The lingering vision in your mind fades, and you feel weakened and small. For an instant, the proud trees of your dream blacken to a dead forest of broken masts, tangled in rigging, set alight to the crack of distant thunder. You feel a storm will come soon. (until you rest and meditate again to resume your trance, you are vulnerable to a mortal wound)
The voice of the male youth hammering outside your door is insistent. You ignore him for the moment to look outside.Please, Mistress - you must help me! I ask not for myself but for my Beloved. I thought my challenge would scare him away, but he has answered it now. I don't even possess a sword - but with your power I know Love will triumph...The cove beneath remains secluded, as always. There are gulls wheeling in the air, and nesting seabirds alongside the guano-stained cliffs. You see the ancient causeway rising like a stairway of obelisks to form the cliffside ascent, and providing a path to Finisterrae, the Keep and the Sea Observatory. The Galernese are fond of a legend of two brothers who fought over who would be king of this island - the first hand to touch the shore would claim it. There is still a handprint sunken into a rock by the beach, though the victor has long been forgotten.>Tell the young man that you cast your tarot deck into the sea long ago. You cannot see his fate without it.>Tell the young man he is annoying and you need to rest and sleep. If he knocks on your door again, you will turn him into a toad.>Ignore the young man and raise your Orb to examine the actual horizon, not the sky of your dream.>Open the door and help the young man
>>5095542>Tell the young man that you cast your tarot deck into the sea long ago. You cannot see his fate without it.>Open the door and what kind of power he seeksI imagine the Sibyl isn’t one who is concerned about modesty
You are beginning to explain that you have abandoned the tarot, but as soon as you unlatch the door the desperate young man bursts in uninvited. You recognise him as the handsome young court artist Alexander Evariste. The Duke Of Galerne commissioned Evariste to paint a portrait of his daughter the Lady Dorotea some months ago. It is well known that the Duke doats on the spoilt girl, indulges her at every opportunity, denying not a single conceit nor whim of his daughter.Evariste clasps in his hand a crumpled, unsealed letter. He thrusts this towards you, and as you raise the letter to the light you see the watermark monogram of the Marquis des Madelonnettes. There is a sickly sweet odour of perfume staining the letter, where you see written in a shaken yet feminine hand the cursive words in High Gothiric script:Much like your Art, your Lineage, and your professions of Love, the word of an upstart Lowborn is worth nothing. Here I return some trinkets from your Beloved to you, so that you may remember your End. It shall please me to observe this by the Old Lighthouse on the morrow, before the first bell of High Tide.Bound to the letter with a small red ribbon is a locket of golden hair. You scrutinise the delicate handwriting and see despite the elegant feminine calligraphy, it is blotted as if written by someone wiping away tears.
Evariste's eyes are filled with an agony of fire, hate, desire and helplessness.The Marquis has made her write this! I am sure of it! Somehow he has learnt of our Love, and he threatens to expose us to her father the Duke - he has made her write this to torture me! But I will do anything for her. I will sacrifice everything! I will fight him. With a stone or a branch of driftwood if I have to - the Marquis is a coward! (chose only ONE:)>Whilst the Galernese Courts may overlook a dalliance amongst the nobility, duels on the island of Finisterrae are strictly forbidden. Warn Evariste that this is a trap, this Marquis is unlikely to honour his word. If Evariste is caught he will be exiled and separated from his Beloved forever. >Ask Evariste how sure he is of his Beloved - he is willing to give his life for her, but has Lady Dorotea even returned his affection at all? What has he done perhaps to warrant the attention of this Marquis, and could the letter itself be some sort of trick?>Explain again to the young man patiently that magick does not work as he thinks. Without the tarot you cannot change his fate beyond helping him understand what he has already brought upon himself. Perhaps you could visit the fishing village, the keep or the castle court, and help him find a champion to fight on his behalf?>This is so simple. You have an Orb and you are a powerful sorceress. You can meet Evariste later before the tide rises, accompany him to the Old Lighthouse, and unleash your magic to burn this evil Marquis to ash.
>>5095608>>Ask Evariste how sure he is of his Beloved - he is willing to give his life for her, but has Lady Dorotea even returned his affection at all? What has he done perhaps to warrant the attention of this Marquis, and could the letter itself be some sort of trick?Nothing would dissuade him but at least this should plant the seeds of doubt
The impassioned Young Artist Evariste recoils from you.How could you... say such things?! Of course the beauteous Dorotea and I are destined to be together...! Your heart must be wrinkled and shrivelled like they say, for you must never have known a devotion, an adoration, an unbearable excruciation of longing such as ours! My Love for Lady Dorotea is so pure... I have not even ever held her hand... I swear it! Unlike that horrible, horrible perverted Marquis. They say he is handsome but I will not believe it. He collects paintings but will permit no artist to take a likeness of him! He must be ashamed of how he looks, or suffer from some secret hideous deformity. To think he has cut the golden hair of my Beloved, and sent her tear-stained words to torment me... I shall end him!A thought comes unbidden to your mind. You could simply... end this insufferable Young Artist right now. The cove is isolated, and few dare come here. But what if the Lady Dorotea truly loves him, and comes to visit you later?>Oh you must be right, young man... Here, come outside to the high cliff edge by the nesting gulls, I can show you some tricks that will "help" you... (push Evariste off the cliff)>What Evariste told you about this Marquis des Madelonnettes concerns you. There is something... not right about him, he must have some strange hold over the Duke to make a plaything of his daughter. Perhaps the gossiping fishwives at the village, or the castle denizens will know some rumours?>You want to see Evariste succeed and be reunited with his Beloved. You intend to find him a champion or at the very least a sword. You could ask the militia guards by the keep, and owe them a favour...>Evariste is right about this Marquis, but helping him is not your concern. Find the Estate of this Marquis des Madelonnettes yourself and confront him alone.
>>5095691>What Evariste told you about this Marquis des Madelonnettes concerns you. There is something... not right about him, he must have some strange hold over the Duke to make a plaything of his daughter. Perhaps the gossiping fishwives at the village, or the castle denizens will know some rumours?If this scheming Marquis has such designs then we best arm ourselves with knowledge, lest we get wrapped up in said designs and our present lifestyle disrupted.
>>5095691>What Evariste told you about this Marquis des Madelonnettes concerns you. There is something... not right about him, he must have some strange hold over the Duke to make a plaything of his daughter. Perhaps the gossiping fishwives at the village, or the castle denizens will know some rumours?
Although, I will say that considering that we have magic and our Will and Charm are good, going to see the Marquis to either side with him or influence or destroy him could've been a good option.
Mission: discover the mysterious secret of the Marquis des Madelonnettes- the Marquis collects paintings- the Marquis forbids anyone to take his likenessAlmost immediately after you grant your offer of aid, the foolish young Artist makes you regret your kindness. The gossipy prattle of Galernese fishwives is almost proverbial. You remind yourself to be discreet when asking around, but the impetuous and foolish Evariste nods enthusiastically:Yes! Yes! You should tell the villagers how I have been wronged! If there is one thing the impoverished hardworking fishwives of Galerne can relate to whilst their husbands toil upon the treacherous sea, it is the tragic love-romance between an artist and his Beloved! They will take my side and expose the wicked cruelty of the Marquis to the Duke... so when I cut the scoundrel down by the Old Lighthouse, Lady Dorotea and I will be reunited! I see it now! You are such a wise Sibyl, O Mistress of Fortune! I was right to come to you after all! Now I will go and practise some duelling stances by myself, with a stick or large paintbrush perhaps...As you approach Tarichee village you are reminded of your reluctance to leave your own secluded cove. The first sight that greets you as you approach Fishgullet Market is that of a fat drunkard passed out face first in a dung heap. There are fish-heads, flies and mounds of gutted innards and fishbones tossed aside from unwanted catch. Before noon the market is already lively with jostling crowds of fishermen, traders and strangers. Some of the older fisherfolk avert their gaze when they see you and make warding gestures of the apotropaic eye, but most in the market take little notice of you.
There is a grizzled old soldier in the market who appears to be gambling with the militia guards who have come to the village from the castle. Their halberds are leant against barrels, where they have constructed a makeshift table of planks laden with counters and ale. You notice the old soldier is well-armoured, and appears to possess an unusual firearm slung casually against his unbuckled breastplate.One of the taller castle guards laughs and exclaims:Why are you even here, Old Man? Who has heard of a mercenary who pays his master with his own coin? We Galernese have no need of you! Our island is impregnable! The Braggart Guard gestures (a little drunkenly) all around. The Alewife nearby titters as the Braggart Guard boastsSee - the walls all around us are the sea! Right?! See? Sea?! The best defense! And the stout oaken hearts of our invincible Galernese fleet, our tarred timbers, our cannons, our wise savants with their eyes upon the firmament - those who seek to threaten us will be blasted back to... back to...The Braggart Guard pauses, and belches.The Old Mercenary mutters something under his breath - it appears despite his concentration, he is indeed losing the dice game.There is a shorter, thinner guard next to him. He says sullenly to the Braggart:Hurry up and take this mercenary's coin from him. The Duke hasn't paid us for... how long now? We might as well resort to trading seashells like those savage jungle Langkasukans...The Braggart slaps the Sullen Guard across the forehead. You idiot, if I somehow persuade... an imbecile like you, to buy one grain of sand for 10 pentacles, and then I point to a heap of sand-dung over there, with... a hundred thousand dung-specks, does that mean I have...,er, I am... the dung-coin merchant King of Galerne? No you fool, it is still a heap of dung. Now, Alewife, more... ale!>Interrupt the Braggart: actually, "akshually", did you know that harvesting dung from seabird guano, or cesspit salt, combined with gunsulphur has some applications in warfare...>Address the Old Mercenary: who are you, and why are you here? Galerne and Finisterrae Castle are well garrisoned already.>(you do not possess the Seashell) Continue to eavesdrop on any conversations at Fishgullet Market, including that between the Braggart, the Sullen Guard and the Old Mercenary (who has not said anything so far)>Completely ignore this conversation, leave and try and wake up the fat drunkard. Maybe prod him from a safe distance as he is covered in pig dung. He looks like a stranger to these shores as well?
>>5095807>Interrupt the Braggart: actually, "akshually", did you know that harvesting dung from seabird guano, or cesspit salt, combined with gunsulphur has some applications in warfare...This may garner an interest from the old soldier, perhaps once we have the icebreaker we can convince him to help the artist or to help us solve this mystery.I wonder if what the Marquis has over the Duke is the fact that he is loaning money to him or something, that comment about the guards not being paid is suspicious.I also wonder if the Marquis is like that one story where he has eternal youth because of his painting or perhaps he shapeshifts and doesn't want anyone having a reference to what he looks like or something.
>>5095807>Interrupt the Braggart: actually, "akshually", did you know that harvesting dung from seabird guano, or cesspit salt, combined with gunsulphur has some applications in warfare...
The Braggart Guard is turning to you with an incredulous expression on his face. The Sullen Guard is trying to restrain him, but gives up after a while. The Alewife watches you with a furrowed brow and a frown.The Braggart (he is quite drunk now, and does not really appear to have understood what you said) looks at you and loudly proclaims:And what would ...you, a woman, know of warfare, eh? Have you ever been on a ship? Have you ever thrust a pike through the innards of a man? It is not the same as gutting eels you know, you prattling old Fishwife!The Old Mercenary sighs as he looks up from the makeshift gambling table for the first time. He seems to recognise your station, at least. He mutters -You have already won the last of my coin, young man. Take your winnings and go - leave the Mistress Of Fortune alone. The Braggart swivels violently towards the Mercenary. He actually has to turn slightly back to look at the older man aslant. Well - not all the winnings. What about that - strange lacquered black pipe of yours slung there? What is that about? Is that some native witchcraft you picked up, eh?The Alewife is looking at the Mercenary shrewdly -That is not everything. Look at that tiger dagger he has hidden at his side. That could keep my husband home and safe from the tides, for a few weeks at the very least...!The Sullen Guard, who appears to have his hand by his halberd leant against the barrels, says simply -Why not take both? You owe it to us, old man! Let us call it Galernese hospitality...(whilst the Braggart, the Alewife and the Sullen Guard are distracted by the Old Mercenary, you may choose ONE action. A rite that is cast is lost forever - but as the Sibyl you can always invent more...)>This Braggart infuriates you. How dare he mistake you for a garrulous Lowborn commoner! You may have walked the ancient land, but you are still as beautiful as any maiden. These fisherfolk have clearly forgotten who you are and need to be reminded to fear your power. Look at the coin the Braggart won from the Old Mercenary, invoke the rite Furnace Of Avarice, and set him alight(this spell will tire you)>The Drunk Braggart is easily diverted. Stare at him and invoke some lesser rite, the Drowning Caul perhaps. He'll choke and the Alewife and guards will be distracted.(you will be a little weakened from this spell)>The Sullen Guard already has his hand on a weapon. Ignore the Braggart, he is too drunk to be an actual threat. Invoke a lesser rite - Butcher's Eye and make the blade edge slip as if by accident, and cut his hand.(you will be a little weakened from this spell)>You should save your strength - you have a feeling you have a long day ahead of you before the tide goes out. Leave the fishing village for the castle, and let the fisherfolk take from the Old Mercenary whatever they want.
>>5096002>The Drunk Braggart is easily diverted. Stare at him and invoke some lesser rite, the Drowning Caul perhaps. He'll choke and the Alewife and guards will be distracted.It'd be good to have an ally in the Old Mercenary, and he clearly recognizes us for who we are.I'm not so certain a dumbfuck miltia guard like him should be lecturing us on the nature of warfare considering he is a castle guard, it isn't likely he's seen much fighting, and if we are on an island then all the real important fighting likely takes place on the sea, if an enemy arrives on this island then they almost certainly will arrive with the troops and supplies to take it, so he'd either be dead if an enemy did come or he'd not have seen much "in-your-face" fighting as the enemy would deliver a siege, not a pitched battle.I think we should save our most potent spell and our weapon slipping spell for later, the weapon slipping could come in handy when we need a minimal response to a lethal situation and the fire is always useful. Plus we don't necessarily want them to fear and hate us by using an overt spell.
(You have gained trait: weakened)(You may still cast spells)(Beware: magick always has a price)The Drunk Braggart leans forward as if to make a retort, but his eyes bulge and turn inward. Suddenly he tilts and retches all over the table. There is seaweed and brine everywhere and his choking and blubbering does not stop. The Braggart collapses and begins to shake with violent paroxysms whilst his hands and feet claw the earth as if submerged and scrabbling for buoyancy. The Sullen Guard looks at his own empty ale flagon, looks at the Alewife, and looks back again at his empty flagon with increasing dismay.What did you put in this ale? What have we been drinking...?The Old Mercenary leads you away from the aghast fisherfolk, towards the path to the castle. In the distance you can hear the Alewife screamingEels?! Eels...! There are Eels coming out of him...! Gaarghh! I had nothing to do with it! Make it stop! Gaarrggh!The Mercenary looks at you and says,Well, I am not sure... what that was, My Lady, but it seems my possessions and old hide are safe. If I were you, I would get off this island as soon as possible. There are spies everywhere, and you never know who is in their pay!He looks at you again, and says,I am Captain Kospel - yes you probably have heard of my famous exploits and adventures, I think they have seen at least a fifth edition printing by now, having sold out through two-and-a-half, three-and-a-half, and a censored fourth edition upon which I will not dwell. My work on this island is already done, but I hate to leave a Lady unprotected amongst ruffians, as such... And no need to worry about me, I keep my greatsword back on the ship!(Kospel offers you - choose ONE:)>Black Lacquered Exotic Pipe>Ornate Tiger-headed Dagger(Choose ONE:)>Tell Captain Kospel everything you know about the Marquis, the Young Artist Evariste and his Beloved Lady Dorotea the Duke's Daughter. Surely this noble mercenary will be moved to help him, perhaps even fight on his behalf?>Tell Captain Kospel he owes you, it was your magick that saved his hide and his coin. Without giving him any explanation, demand that he repay you by fighting as Evariste's champion at the Old Lighthouse against the Marquis.>Even with your powers of persuasion, you don't think you can convince this mercenary without anything to offer him. But you could probably ask Captain Kospel what a famous adventurer like him was doing on this isolated island?>Ask Captain Kospel about the spies. How does he know this? What rumours has he heard, and why is he so eager to leave this island now that his task is done?>(Write in...? eg ask Kospel questions, or try to give him an item)
The "Black Lacquered Exotic Pipe"
The "Ornate Tiger-headed Dagger"
>>5096093>Black Lacquered Exotic PipeKospel huh?>Tell Captain Kospel everything you know about the Marquis, the Young Artist Evariste and his Beloved Lady Dorotea the Duke's Daughter. Surely this noble mercenary will be moved to help him, perhaps even fight on his behalf?>Ask Captain Kospel about the spies. How does he know this? What rumours has he heard, and why is he so eager to leave this island now that his task is done?
>>5096093>Black Lacquered Exotic Pipe>Ask Captain Kospel about the spies. How does he know this? What rumours has he heard, and why is he so eager to leave this island now that his task is done?Our mission isn't to help the artist or kill the Marquis but to discover the answer to the mystery of what secrets the Marquis is hiding.
>>5096200Changing to this but ask for help if we can
Imperial Langkasukan Matchlock, or"Black Lacquered Exotic Pipe"Close range, loud, armour-piercing, bulky, unsteady, high recoil, slow reloadMuzzle-loading, 1-shot weapon. An experienced marksman would perhaps fire this from a forked linstock at rest - even a sword cross-hilt would do - whilst carefully shielding the burning match cord from moisture and damp. Smooth bore combined with your trembling hand and untrained eye, renders this firearm almost useless at distance.
Kospel scratches his beard as he hands you his loaded firearm. The hinged plates of his armour clank together uncomfortably as he resheathes his tiger dagger. Er... yes, spies everywhere, hmmm. They could be anyone, always... listening. Spreading er...inaccurate rumours. Well you see I do not really know this island that well, I used to retrieve a few relics for the Marquis sometimes... he collects all sorts of beautiful artifacts from shipwrecks and old ruins along the coast here. Fragrances, mirrors, masks, antiques, jewels... I even found him an old tarot deck once, though a few cards were missing. He was very impressed by it, that was a significant find! No, I have never directly met the Marquis. He is a strange one. You know, I do not believe anyone has ever seen his face at all, though His Grace the Duke will not hear of a bad word spoken against the Marquis. He is only known by his curious habit of always asking in person for an invitation from his host before entering. Apparently if you just ignore him, he just goes away. Does he not have a manservant or messenger for this? Some affectation for ancient Highborn gallantry amongst nobles perhaps. Reminds me a bit of a vampire! You know, this one time, in a dungeon lair, I singlehandedly fought off one of those...You hear the peal of distant bells, followed by an unusual mid-day signal cannonade from the castle. It must just be announcing that it is noon? Captain Kospel prepares to leave.>Insist on persuading Kospel to act as Champion for Evariste. You might have to frighten him a little... tell him if he does not do exactly as you ask, for no coin and pay, you will curse him... he will go mad in the future, and will never be able to touch dice or gamble ever again! Ahahahahaaaa... (evil witch laugh)>If what Kospel says is true, and this Marquis is some sort of vampire, you will need every weapon you can find. Get rid of your stupid heirloom scissor-dagger, it is so weak and pathetic and useless...? Show him the small gems on it and trade it for Kospel's tiger-headed dagger instead.>Keep the Heirloom Scissor-dagger, trade your Orb to Kospel instead for his tiger-headed dagger>Kospel's ramblings are wasting time, some of his rumours sound far-fetched and untrue this time to you. Take what you already have and leave for the castle immediately.>(other/write in...? Further actions will delay your arrival at the castle)
(whilst you finish your dealings with Kospel, you consider your next plan: )>This Marquis is definitely a vampire, like Kospel claims. You have all the magic and weapons and information you need already. Find the estate of the Marquis des Madelonnettes and confront him in his lair alone, whilst it is noon and the sun is at its highest.>You are not sure that everything Kospel is saying is true. He could be a spy himself! Perhaps you should ask more about this Marquis at the castle and the court.>Kospel evades your questions about his completed errand here on the island. The Braggart was right - what use would a heavily garrisoned remote island have for an old mercenary like him? You should focus on investigating what brought Kospel here, and why he warned you to leave.>Your instincts tell you that some strange magical working is afoot. Kospel's rumours, the Old Lighthouse, the strange Marquis, the Young Artist and his Beloved... if only you had the tarot to show you what it means. Try and find a secluded promontory, use your Orb and meditate on what you have learned (you will rest and this will restore the visions to you, but could take several hours)
>>5096407If you trade your Orb to Kospel, you can still meditate and rest by the castle promontory. Your visions will be weaker and more confused however.You feel there could be ample time and another opportunity to rest and restore your visions at your dwelling, but it is up to you to choose the better timing for it.
>>5096372>Force Kospel to accompany us. Appeal to his chivalry and gentlemanly traits. If he refuses tell him we'll curse him. Muahahahahahahaha>Kospel evades your questions about his completed errand here on the island. The Braggart was right - what use would a heavily garrisoned remote island have for an old mercenary like him? You should focus on investigating what brought Kospel here, and why he warned you to leave.
Kospel listens very attentively as you try to describe the plight of the Young Artist Evariste and his Beloved, but without revealing too much. He is studying you very carefully, and listening so intently it almost seems like he intends to memorise what you told him and repeat everything back you said, to someone else later. When you tell him you have no coin to give him, and are on the verge of compelling him with curses - if he ever touches dice again or gambles, he will go mad...! - Kospel holds up his hand.With my luck at dice, that sounds more like a blessing than a curse. It will do me good! I am not exactly sure who this Young Man and his "Beloved" is but he sounds like a fool. His Lady might not even love him at all, and he is willing to die for her... She could be in league with this mysterious letter-sender of his you describe, and be out to trick or humiliate him. Kospel frowns a little, and wrinkles his weathered face:However, this foolish Young Man reminds me a little of how I was in my youth. I do not know him, I have not met him, I cannot promise you I will fight for him. But I will bring my greatsword and perhaps stand witness as his second, at the Old Lighthouse before the High Tide comes. Duels are a matter of honour, and no trickery or underhand dealing should be permitted!>>5094955>>5095400(The Knight Of Swords is returned to the tarot deck)(Somewhere, mysteriously, the missing card reappears: The Three Of Swords)Kospel departs for his ship and for the first time as he leaves you notice he was carrying some sort of rolled package with him. It looks like something is folded or rolled up within, as you can see the frayed threads along the edges of something that looks like a rolled up tapestry, or perhaps a painting canvas? You are familiar with the consequences of magic, which always carries a price. The hierodulic order taught of the most powerful of the ancient Sibyls, three Sisters in the forms of Maiden, Mother and Crone, who spun the threads of life and fate into mortal tapestry. The Sibyls were unrivalled in their wisdom and witch-sight, but became blind to the world sharing only one Eye between them.Your magic, your visions and dreams bring you life and sustain you, but they may also hide and obscure what is before your very eyes. Thinking back to the revolting smells of the Lowborn fishing village, you have always known your Instinct amongst thieves, rogues and the street-wise is weak even as your magic is powerful. Earlier, you did not see Kospel's hidden tiger dagger at first, though the shrewd Alewife noticed it with her greedy eye. (Your magick is balanced against Instinct. Use it often, and more of the world may escape you)
As you head into Finisterrae Castle there is a scuttling sensation at the back of your mind. Kospel's warning of spies makes you feel like you are being followed or watched somehow. You cannot help thinking that some powerful ritual from ancient legend has been set in motion, that you may not be able to stop. You curse yourself again and again for casting your tarot into the sea - it just seemed to be useless at the time after you lost those four cards. If only there was some way of using it to guide you now...?You are surprised to find there are no guards to challenge you at the Keep - it is almost deserted. The Duke has dismissed the commoner militia watchmen - sent them to do as they please in the Fishing Village - and his own household guard are nowhere to be seen either. In your experience this must mean he has convened them to gather somewhere, perhaps in the Banquet Hall, to greet an important guest or visiting dignitary. You are thinking of investigating this when you hear a warbling voice echoing through the castle corridors, accompanied by a clatter and jangling of metal. It sounds like a rather timid young woman...Hellooo...? My Lady...? I promise, no more lessons for today... Look, I brought you something to entertain... please...? Hellooo...? Please, please... come out...? (nervously, to herself:) oh the Duke will be so angry if he finds out...The young woman stops when she sees you. She is attired in a prim and formal manner, and carrying an armful of... swords. Longswords, shortswords, sabres, rapiers, blades of every balance, length and weight. There are really a lot of swords there, but you can see three stand out in particular. >Are you looking for Lady Dorotea?>Perhaps I can help you carry some of those swords?>Where is the Duke? Where are guards? Does he know a strange mercenary Captain Kospel is on his island, spreading rumours about spies?>Ignore this woman. You should find somewhere to rest and dream in the castle, so that more of your visions will return to you...(this will take a few hours)
You see the young woman carrying the following items:(you may not take any of them yet!)
>>5096610>Where is the Duke? Where are guards? Does he know a strange mercenary Captain Kospel is on his island, spreading rumours about spies?
Training FoilA light, swift sword with a minimal handguard, that even a complete beginner could master with enough determination. Easy to use and learn, but there is unusually no blunted safety fleuret on the blade point, which is quite sharp indeed and designed to pierce the chest and heart.
>>5096368I might be mistaken, but that picture isn't a matchlock.>>5096605I appreciate the change of you being more forward with the nature of our abilities.>>5096610>Offer to help her carry some of those, then instead of taking an armful, take one and hamstring her while she is encumbered, then interrogate her as to the whereabouts of the duke, his guards, the Lady Dorotea, if she is a spy, who is she, what does she know of the Marquis, etc.I'm half of mind that this is the governess, I'm also of the mind that perhaps we should just shoot her dead if the previous character versus other-character-we-did-not-select tradition holds true.Bit out of left field and crazy, but...eh, we've done crazier in the past.
Galernese Naval SabreThe power of its heavy, curved cutting edge will split an opponent in half, from head to chest. A versatile weapon used by cavalry astride horse and also in boarding actions on the sea, the sabre can slash as well as thrust. The broad basket hilt offers the best handguard against trickery. The sabre is not for the faint-hearted.
Crosshilt Silver ÉpéeA true duellist's weapon, with an edgeless blade concentrating all piercing power upon the point. It may require some advanced technique and fast reflexes, but in the right hands it can target an opponent anywhere - head, chest, limbs. The elaborate crosshilted basket guard is more ornamental, but can be used for a variety of purposes and manoeuvres, providing some protection for the hand.
>>5096741As you contemplate your choice of swords, the strange ancient legend of the Galernese conqueror is suddenly recalled to your mind. The two forgotten brothers on their longships chased each other to claim the island... the imprint of the conqueror's hand is upon a beach rock somewhere... the first to touch the shore would be crowned King... (Consider carefully what you have learnt from your visions, and what you believe may happen in the future. If you already know what will occur you may choose to take one, two, three swords or even none at all. If you choose 1 or 2 you must write-in exactly which weapons you select. The brand of the ancient Sibyl burns against your skin and you feel this will be a significant choice.)>Take all three swords. (You will be greatly overburdened. Magick will be very difficult to perform)>Write-in: take two swords (specify which two. You will be slightly encumbered, and may struggle with some magick)>Write-in: take only one sword (specify which one)>Take none of the swords. Perhaps ask the Governess some questions calmly first?
>>5096741(well observed. I deliberately chose a tanegashima style weapon to suggest a matchlock of foreign manufacture. Most Galernese do not recognise this weapon)(You can kill the Governess now if you wish, though you probably need a sword to execute your plan. If you want to shoot her/use a spell, write-in, but bear in mind this will tire you etc. You can refer to her character attributes to judge your likelihood of success. You can also just take any sword/swords you want from her without asking - see if she can stop you!)
>>5096739At the sight of you and your question the formerly timid young woman straightens and adopts a formal manner of bearing, which is quite difficult considering the burdensome bundle of blades and weaponry she is carrying. Some of her swords clatter to the ground. You are not sure which was feigned - her earlier timidity to lure out whoever she was looking for, or her current solemn sense of etiquette. She seems as if she is new to the castle - she must be a Governess of some sort. By a capricious quirk of impulse, you almost feel a need to test her - maybe just a wayward taunt - in order to measure her Will against yours.The Governess replies tersely,Captain Kospel fulfilled his duty and has departed. We are very vigilant against spies here, if your question is some sort of trick, I am not answering! But all of the castle has already gathered to the Grand Hall, where Captain Kospel had escorted the Auctor Of Imprests to meet with His Grace the Duke of Galerne. Perhaps that is where you should be?(you may choose as many topics as you wish. Bear in mind the Governess is occupied with another task currently, and too many questions may provoke her)>As a Governess, you must be so clever... tell me, do you know the local legend of the two brothers who conquered Galerne?>You must be so learned, Young Mistress. But do you know anything about duelling?>You must know so much of the Castle. Have you seen the Marquis here recently?>I heard a rumour that the Lady Dorotea is very fond of that autist... I mean artist - Evariste, who took her likeness. Have you seen his portrait of her?>And your employer, His Grace the Duke of Galerne, how is he faring these days?
>>5096750The Galernese legend was first glimpsed by you briefly here>>5095542
>>5096750>Write-in: take only one sword (specify which one)Take the cutlass initially to hamstring and interrogate her with, after all, one does not hamstring someone with a thrusting weapon, after we are done we should drop the cutlass and taking the training foil, as we are simply not skilled enough to make use of the more advanced weapons.>You must know so much of the Castle. Have you seen the Marquis here recently?>After we ask this question and get an answer, do >>5096741 and then ask the questions in that vote and the remaining prompts here >>5096758
>>5096758>>5096771Actually, wait, I'll keep my vote the same as I just voted but change the initial question to...>As a Governess, you must be so clever... tell me, do you know the local legend of the two brothers who conquered Galerne?It seems important, and as a educated woman she may have some interesting insight into this, and besides, no one has ever seen the Marquis, I doubt she has either.
>>5096758Oh, and assuming we are successful and she doesn't manage to outmaneuver us while encumbered, make sure to cover her mouth when she yelps in pain, ask her our questions and then uncover her mouth to get her answer, though be ready to cover it again if she tries to scream for help.
>>5096774The Hierodulic Orders of the past kept loyal slave-guards to protect their sanctuary, and the virtue of their sacred oracle-daughters, who were often too immersed in their rites of pleasure and delirium to be even aware of how to protect themselves, let alone train for combat. Perhaps you need to mould someone to fight on your behalf? As you reach for the naval sabre the Governess is at first perplexed, then panicked. For a moment in her eyes you see a flicker of an urge to fight you, but she is too well aware of her own limited combat prowess. (Your combat ability has slightly improved.)(Overall, you are still terrible.)(The Governess Instinct outmatches yours.)(The Governess is hostile to you)(The Governess is afraid of you)Before you can even reach her, she drops the heap of swords and shrieks:Guards! Guards! There is a madwoman...an assassin here! The Vourukasha devils are here! Guards?! Guards...!!The Governess flees towards the direction of the Banquet Hall. You are about to give chase when from the rafters above you hear a strange clicking sound. It sounds like... the released drawstring of a crossbow...(You are wounded)(You are bleeding)(Invoking a Greater Rite whilst injured will increase the peril of unintended consequences)The barbed bolt strikes you and the lacerating pain that explodes in your shoulder almost knocks you down and you involuntarily drop the naval sabre. The bolt missed your neck by a mere hand's breadth, and you see a spider-like shape scuttling away rapidly on all fours from the rafters.>Retrieve the sabre and chase the Governess, despite your wound you need to execute her before she reaches earshot of the guards in the Grand Hall>In a peculiar way, the Governess raising the alarm has flushed out whatever has been following you. Let the Governess scream for the guards (you might need them... ) you need to chase this sinister hidden crossbow spy assassin who has been crouching in the rafters watching you. Take the sabre, run up to the battlements of the castle and see if you can corner or hunt them down>The ritual is the most important task. The Marquis is planning something greater than all this... you need to be absolutely certain you have chosen the correct sword / swords. Let the Governess and the hidden crossbow spy-assassin get away. Write-in your final selection of swords specifying what you will take, then stagger to the secluded castle promontory and meditate to recover and restore yourself>(something else...?)
>>5096811>In a peculiar way, the Governess raising the alarm has flushed out whatever has been following you. Let the Governess scream for the guards (you might need them... ) you need to chase this sinister hidden crossbow spy assassin who has been crouching in the rafters watching you. Take the sabre, run up to the battlements of the castle and see if you can corner or hunt them down
>>5096817You begin to run toward the battlements and you nearly trip over the hem of your dress. You reproach yourself a little - you cannot even outmatch a defenceless Governess in combat, what chance do you have against this crossbow assassin? But despite the barbed bolt in your shoulder (it is bleeding a lot now, and your arm feels a little numb) you are determined to push on. Unaware as you were, this spy-assassin could not kill you with a single shot from the shadows, perhaps they are not as fearsome as they seem?You catch a brief glimpse of your foe. They seem to be bald and heavily tattooed and very, very fast. You cannot see what mechanism they used to fire the bolt at you from the shadows, it must be some sort of concealed weapon or perhaps they discarded it. The spy-assassin is wearing what seems like a tight-laced harlequin costume, but your foe is intent on fleeing and will not turn and face you.>Scream at your foe: Coward! Face me, you devil!>Invoke the lesser rite Butcher's Eye. You may not be good with a sword but your witchcraft will guide its edge to this assassins throat. Hurl the naval sabre at the assassin as you release the spell (This will exhaust you in your injured state. The consequences of this sorcery will be more severe than usual)>You have no chance of defeating this fearsome spy assassin. If they fire at you again, you will die. And you will be cornered upon the battlements, trapped when the guards arrive. Retreat to the castle promontory, hide and meditate to restore yourself>(something else...?)
>>5096840>Scream at your foe: Coward! Face me, you devil!If they don't immediately do so then...>You have no chance of defeating this fearsome spy assassin. If they fire at you again, you will die. And you will be cornered upon the battlements, trapped when the guards arrive. Retreat to the castle promontory, hide and meditate to restore yourselfif they do turn to fight us, then...>Invoke the lesser rite Butcher's Eye. You may not be good with a sword but your witchcraft will guide its edge to this assassins throat. Hurl the naval sabre at the assassin as you release the spell (This will exhaust you in your injured state. The consequences of this sorcery will be more severe than usual)
We caught a glimpse of their appearance, that is enough for now.
waaaaaaait a second, is that the outlaw monk? And I'm almost certain that the Marquis is the Libertine, I just reread their descriptions. Damn, I derped hard on not getting that. I also had hairtrigger reaction upon seeing another potential PC based on prior experience, hence my bloodthirsty response, oops.
>>5096857>>5096844>Scream at your foe: Coward! Face me, you devil!>>5094955(Somewhere the tarot mysteriously feels the threads of fate unravel, as if a pattern has been broken. XV: The Devil has been strengthened)(Your combat prowess has slightly improved. Your ability is now merely poor, but you feel you could probably defeat someone who has never challenged another to battle)You scream your challenge to the empty winds. Your foe takes no notice of you, and leaps over the battlements into the sea below... surely only to certain death? From the glimpse you caught, and despite the baldness and the tattooed face and head, you think she was a woman...From the vantage point of the battlements you see a mysterious sight upon the horizon. You cannot help but feel that this is something you missed before... when you raise the Orb to your eye to examine it, a fearsome sight greets you...There is a black armada of warships on the horizon. It resembles a phalanx, a dead forest of masts and rigging. Your earlier premonition of a storm indeed appears to be coming true. You have little naval knowledge, for you walked this land through dreams and visions... the Braggart (somewhere he is still choking and vomiting eels) was right to say you have not actually been on a ship before. You are not sure who or what this armada represents, but you are almost certain this is not the proud Galernese fleet.>There is something very sinister afoot here.Even in your injured state, if you enter your trance upon the battlements right here, right now, you can draw upon what you have learnt for a powerful revelation. Just hope that the vision ends before the guards arrive...>The situation is far too dangerous. No vision or prophesy is worth this. You should retreat to the castle promontory which is more secluded, meditate there and restore yourself. >The Governess has probably alerted every guard in the castle by now. You think back to Kospel's words warning you to leave the island. Flee the castle whilst you can. The safest place is to retreat to your dwelling by the hidden cove. Enter your trance there to restore yourself, no-one can find you there?>There are cannons on these battlements. You heard them earlier, during the unusual noon signal cannonade. Now do you think you know how to fire one of them, or will you just blow yourself up?>(Something else...?)
(The premonition of the storm, and the armada linked here: )>>5095540
>>5096871I really like that the world seems to be progressing actively as we move forward, while the previous planet had interconnected stories, it sometimes felt like not a lot of major events that affected the whole area the character were in happened. Maybe because they were more dispersed in different locations, whereas presumably if we were playing another character we would at least still be on this island. That isn't to say I'm a fan of things progressing unreasonably quickly like when that whole exhibition went by over the course of a very quick conversation with our troops when we were the Preceptor or whatever the characters name was.Anyways...>The Governess has probably alerted every guard in the castle by now. You think back to Kospel's words warning you to leave the island. Flee the castle whilst you can. The safest place is to retreat to your dwelling by the hidden cove. Enter your trance there to restore yourself, no-one can find you there?Events are moving quickly, the mission we set out upon may soon be rendered irrelevant, and as much as I'd like an interesting ending or to find out secrets for subsequent playthroughs, my desire to act as our character might wins out. We cannot stay on this island with such dangerous events occurring, perhaps at a later date we might influence events positively through our magic, but for now lets just get out alive.
THE STORY SO FAR:You are wounded, bleeding from a crossbow bolt to the shoulderYou are currently weakenedfrom casting the Lesser Rite: Drowning Caul,You may still cast spells, but at the peril of increased unintended consequencesYou possess:1/ Heirloom Scissorsconcealed, swift, weak2/ Orb3/ Imperial Langkasukan MatchlockClose range, Loud, Armour-Piercing, Bulky, Unsteady, High recoil, Slow4/ Galernese Naval SabreCleave, Slash, Thrust, FearsomeHeavy, Slow, BulkyTarget: Head, Upper Body: Arms, ChestHandguard Protection: Highest
You recall an ancient legend of the Conqueror of Galerne:Two brothers chased each other to claim the island; the first to touch the shore would be crowned King. There is a beach rock somewhere on the island where the handprint still remainsThe secluded cliffs outside your dwelling are filled with nesting birds and stained with guanoYou believe the Marquis des Madelonettes provoked Evariste into a duel, by coercing his Beloved The Lady Dorotea Galerne, daughter of the Duke, into writing a tear-stained letter scented with perfume. The letter is written in a feminine hand. The Marquis sent Evariste a locket of Dorotea's golden hairThe Marquis is known to collect many treasuresfragrances, mirrors, masks, antiques, jewelsCurrently the Marquis collects paintings. He does not permit any artist to take a likeness of him.Kospel believes no-one has even seen the face of the MarquisKospel found the Marquis a tarot deck, with some missing cardsYour tarot deck, which you cast into the sea, was missing four cards: the Three Of Swords, The Knight Of Coins, XV: The Devil, XVI: The TowerThe Marquis insists on asking his host in person for an invitation before making an entranceThe Marquis has some strange hold over the Duke, who will not tolerate a bad word spoken against himThe Young Artist, Alexander Evariste, awaits you by the Old Lighthouse before the First Bell of High Tide. Evariste intends to kill the Marquis in a duel.Evariste will sacrifice everything for his Beloved.Evariste does not possess a sword.Evariste was commissioned by the Duke to paint a portrait of his daughter. You have not seen the portrait.Evariste adores the Lady Dorotea. He has never even held her hand.The Duke indulges his spoilt daughter.If you are caught duelling in Galerne, the penalty is exile.Captain Kospel has promised to act as Evariste's second and witness during the duel. You are not sure if he can be trusted. You warned Kospel you would curse him with madness if he broke his word and touched dice or gambled againKospel will bring his GreatswordKospel will bring his Tiger-Head DaggerKospel is carrying a mysterious package, containing something that resembles either a threaded tapestry, a painting or a canvasKospel warned you about spiesKospel thinks the Marquis reminds him of a vampire.Kospel has never met the Marquis.
There is a fat drunkard passed out in a dung heap by Tarichee village, in the Fishgullet market.You did not try to wake him.You invoked the Lesser Rite: Drowning Caul upon the Braggart Guard, who cannot stop vomiting brine, seaweed and eels. The Sullen Guard suspects the Alewife did something to his ale.The Alewife wants a way to keep her husband at home, away from the dangerous tideThe militia believe the island is impervious to attackThe Duke has not paid the militia guard for a long timeThe Duke dismissed the militia guard and sent them to the fishing village.The Castle guard are all elsewhereSome of the guards are interested in the seashell currency of LangkasukYou remembered some alchemy that seabird guano, or cesspit salt, can be combined with gunsulphur for warfareThe Heirodulic Order taught you of three Sibyls, Maiden, Mother and Crone who spun the fate of men into a mortal tapestry. The Sibyls possessed powerful witchsight, but were blind to the world and shared only one Eye between them. If you use too much magic and surrender to visions and dreams, you will be blinded to the world before you.
The Governess is hostile to youThe Governess is afraid of youThe Governess thinks you are a madwomanThe Governess believes you are in league with the Vourukasha, as an assassinThe Governess told you Kospel's mission was to escort the Auctor Of Imprests to meet with the Duke Of GalerneThe Governess was carrying swords whilst looking for a Lady.You left behind the Training Foil and the Crosshilt Silver ÉpéeYou were followed by an actual spy or assassin, a bald tattooed harlequin woman with some sort of hidden crossbow. She fled after injuring you and leapt from the battlements into the sea.
(The Three Of Swords was restored to the Tarot)(You fled the Castle, retreating to your dwelling by the cove)(The King Of Coins is Lost to the Tarot)(The Power of XV: The Devil is greatly increased)(...?)
As you ascend the old causeway by the cliffs of the secluded cove, you can feel the wind rising. The beach is blotched with sea foam as the billowing waves swell with the descending tempest. The sky is fractured with unnatural light. You hurry towards your dwelling.
You latch the door of your home securely, but it begins to rattle with the wind outside. Nonetheless you let out a sigh of relief when you finally set your items down upon your table. Your shoulder is numb with shock, cold and pain. You need to rest and let the dreams restore you.As you set your Orb against the candles, what do you see?(Choose ONE only. Consider carefully what you believe will occur in the future)>The Wheel (you will be defended against trickery, and unexpected situations. The Wheel is associated with fortune and earthly matters of wealth)>The Axe (blades or edged weapons will blunt and themselves from you. Though you may take some glancing damage, a bruise or two, no sword, axe or other physical weapon can injure you)>Fire (you will be unharmed by fire in all its forms, including sorcery. Your surroundings may still ignite and burn, however)>Flood (you cannot drown. Through some mysterious connection to the sea, you will resist those compulsions of feeling, passion and hysteria as well)
>>5097050>Flood (you cannot drown. Through some mysterious connection to the sea, you will resist those compulsions of feeling, passion and hysteria as well)Going with this owing to the Marquis seeming like a vampire and the devil tarot growing strong.It was going to be that or the wheel, since the wheel may prevent us from being surprised or also prevent mental trickery and may be useful owing to the devil being in full height.Obviously the ships coming could represent the witch pirates and the guards or the assassin could try and kill us, so the axe and fire would be potentially useful, but our cove is hidden and I hope that would actually count for something.Also, with the Flood we have the option of jumping in the sea as an escape method. Plus the storm worries me.
>>5097050To clarify, is this a buff we will gain when we wake or is this just a limited protection during our sleep? I was under the impression we could not suffer a mortal wound while asleep or that we were otherwise impervious, is that true or is that what this vote is? I'm curious to know if we only have protection from one aspect during our sleep. If our protection during our sleep is limited I may switch to the wheel so as not to be assassinated while sleeping.
Man, I really should've taken your advice about not always being compelled to take a weapon, especially since it was such a shitty one and we could always find or trade for weapons. It was appropriate for the Eschatonomist, but not for the Sibyl, the tarot deck could've been useful.
>>5097057On another world - you know not the time or place - you see one similar to yourself being judged, before a howling void. A portal or mirror of some sorts, that almost resembles the Orb before you. It is strange how you have never been aboard a ship, for you feel as if the one passing judgement has a fate bound to a vessel that crosses a sea which you cannot understand. You do not see the judgement - was it by Wheel, Axe, Fire or Flood?By the flickering illumination of candlelight, the Orb shows you the Old Lighthouse, long abandoned and fallen into disuse, and the swell of the rising tide and the storm. The Black Armada of ships is waiting, as if for some signal to approach, but there is still something missing...
>>5097061The trance is calming and soothing you. You feel warmth beginning to return to your shoulder. You feel as if everything is falling into place, every item and being has an intended and significant purpose, if only placed and used at the right time...Before the ritual is complete, a sudden gust of wind from the seams beneath your door blows the candles out. You are abruptly jolted into consciousness with the sickening realisation that you are still tired, wounded, unprotected and unhealed.The Young Artist, Alexander Evariste is knocking against your door. He asks:Mistress Of Fortune - I must speak with you. I cannot wait any longer. It is a matter of Life and Death! Please, let me in!>Open the door and let Evariste know how you succeeded. You persuaded Captain Kospel to bear witness as his second at the duel, and you even found him a sword. Perhaps he will be truly reunited with his Beloved?>Walk to the door but do not open it. Ask Evariste why he has left the Old Lighthouse.>Hold your breath, try not to move at all... stay completely silent and pretend you are not there...>Walk to the door, open it but without looking at who it is, immediately shoot whoever is behind the door point blank in the face. >You have a terrible sense of foreboding of what is going to happen here. You need to run, escape, jump through the window and flee down the causeway as fast as you can.
>>5094955>>5097017Just realised I made a mistake here.It should read "Knight Of Coins" and NOT "King Of Coins"As you probably guessed already, it should match the sequence of missing cards in the original tarot item.(Interestingly I based this on the real-life Visconti-Sforza deck in museum collections, where these are the four cards that are missing as well!)
>>5097092I figured.>>5097080Ah, I see, they are waiting for a signal from the lighthouse or some other signal.>>5097083Lets see, who knows who we truly are and the location of our residence. The artist, and anyone he told, he would run his mouth so he could've told anyone. There is a chance this is really him and he is not charmed or duplicitous. The guards and fisherman's wives didn't know who we are and likely do not know where we live as we live in a "hidden" cove. The Mercenary knows who we are and could know where we live. The duke or marquis may have access to superior knowledge owing to being people of power who would have information networks. The assassin could've followed us and be throwing her voice and holding the artist hostage...If we open the door a bit, our strength is weak, so someone could push it open against our will. I'm not sure how attached we are to our home, but as long as we can rest we can seemingly refresh spells and heal and gain some kind of immunity, so we just need our most valuable items and otherwise it'd be fine for us to ditch and find another place to rest.If we blindfire, we may alert others who will come to investigate, or we may pointless kill the artist, if the assassin is holding him hostage we'll likely kill him and then be open to attack by the assassin.>Hold your breath, try not to move at all... stay completely silent and pretend you are not there...and watch the window with occasional glances at the door to watch the shadows shifting underneath the gap. Ready our weapons but otherwise stay silent.
You sit in the darkness, clutching your wounded shoulder, trying to hold completely still. You smell the scent of tallow wax from the extinguished candles, and a sickly sweet fragrance of perfume. The earlier numbness of the assassin's bolt is absent but replaced with a sharp twinge of piercing pain that makes you shudder involuntarily - you worry if you do not attend to the wound and complete the ritual to restore yourself, the use of your arm may be impaired. Strangely the old brand upon your skin flares, adding to your shoulder wound with a burning ache.The stray gust of wind from beneath the door scatters parchment and loose trinkets upon your table, spiralling in a whirlwind around you, as if roaming, searching. The Orb upon your table suddenly falls, hitting the floor with a dull clunk, and rolls towards the door. The latch that secures the entrance of your dwelling rattles and chatters with the billowing storm outside. The planks of the door bulge a little inwards, as if being tested. There is a momentary lull where the winds abate as Evariste speaks:Please, Mistress! Let me in! Did you manage to find some help? Please, answer me... it is so cold and wet outside... Please just open the door, and let me in!>Open the door>Open the door, immediately raise the matchlock pistol and shoot whoever is outside point-blank in the face without looking.>Maybe just crawl to the door? You can try and shuffle through your scattered trinkets and touch the Orb which has rolled towards the entrance, and complete the ritual to restore yourself...?>Stay where you are, respond: prove to me you are really Alexander Evariste, and that you are here of your own free will>Continue to hold your breath, remain motionless, silently grit your teeth and clutch your wound tighter...>You must flee, now. Leap out the window and run back down the causeway to the secret cove outside.
>>5097365>Continue to hold your breath, remain motionless, silently grit your teeth and clutch your wound tighter...We aren't good at Instinct, so I don't trust us to be able to stealth crawl to the orb, but I think anyone could hypothetically manage to stay still and hold their breath as well as anyone else.Going to sleep now, make good choices anons.
>>5097387You sit in the darkness silently clutching the matchlock pistol in one hand and your wounded shoulder in the other. The pain is unbearable. The brand upon your skin burns anew.The voice of Evariste outside has taken a different tone. Though the storm outside is growing, and you begin to hear the gentle pattering of light rain, the rattling latch to your door falls still.The voice taunts:I know you are in there, Witch. You cannot take this island from me. It is mine - mine by blood. The Duke, his beautiful spoilt daughter and that fool of an artist who loves her, all shall perish. Look into your Orb and see how even now, the Duke climbs the castle battlements to leap to his death. He is clutching the portrait of his only child. You could not prevent it!I cannot enter, but I will burn this dwelling of yours to the ground.Despite the taunting of the Marquis, through clenched teeth and the pain of your wound you know what he says is untrue. If he expends his power to burn your dwelling, how will he send the signal upon the Old Lighthouse later?A dangerous plan begins to form in your mind.>Taunt the Marquis yourself. Try to incite him into expending his magic to burn down your door. You think you will be able to escape the fire with your items, but your Orb by the entrance will be lost. You will remain tired, injured, unprotected, unhealed. However, when you face the Marquis again, he will have no magic at all.>Say nothing to this voice and its taunts. You remember what Kospel told you, the Marquis will have no choice but to eventually leave. You can complete your trance, be protected and heal, but when you face the Marquis by the Old Lighthouse he will bring the full force of his power upon you.
>>5097433(There is a third path, of evil and horror...)>If you think you know the ritual and what the Marquis intends, write-in and describe it. Perhaps he will let you aid him and you can rule the island together?
>>5097436My theory is that he intends to use the swords to destroy a portrait. The portrait contains a soul or some kind of power which will allow him to control the island and live forever. The fleet is here to ensure his conquest.Either way we could use our fragmented knowledge of this and our charms to convince him to allow us to rule together. If that fails then bait him into revealing more of what he intends to do so we can stop him (or help should it come to that).
>>5097534 (this is very close to his intention, but not quite close enough to the ritual. The Marquis would not accept your aid)In the silence and dark as the tempest rages around you, all pretension of what may be good or evil fall away. You feel your resolve wavering and you must decide soon lest it give out to the darkness outside your door altogether.(the choices remain:)>Taunt the Marquis and defy him. This is a dangerous path, but try to incite him into expending his magic to burn down your door. You think you will be able to escape the fire with your items, but your Orb by the entrance will be lost. You will remain tired, injured, unprotected, unhealed. However, when you face the Marquis again, he will have no magic at all. He will be weakened and susceptible, and perhaps that would make it easier to seize the island for yourself alone?>Say nothing to this voice and its taunts. You remember what Kospel told you, the Marquis will have no choice but to eventually leave. You can complete your trance, be protected and heal, but when you face the Marquis by the Old Lighthouse he will bring the full force of his power upon you.
>>5097436>There are two kinds of love: that which commands, and that which obeys.This is either something to do with how he views love or something to do with the nature of his charm abilities.I'm guessing he has either charmed Dorotea and that is how he got her to write the letter, or since he collects fragrances the perfume is his and not hers and he faked the letter.Perhaps Dorotea and Evariste really are in love and the Marquis needs to kill him in order to successfully charm the heiress in order to inherit and rule the island. Perhaps he needs to do something with the portrait to use his charms on Dorotea or it is some sort of body swapping ritual and he needs to go into Dorotea's body to inherit the island and that is how he maintains his eternal youth. I dunno.>>5097577I think if we choose the right protection we can take him in a fight if the Flood protects from charm, we are the main magic character, our magic should be more powerful or have more options, whereas he merely has the option to obtain magick through "play" if he was a PC. Plus his strength and Will are poor, funnily enough, ours is stronger. The problem is that he can probably just charm Evariste and the Mercenary, we'd have to fireball him, use our gun to gun down one of the other two, and then fight the other. I think we'd ideally fireball the vamp, shoot the merc (good thing we took the gun so he couldn't shoot us with it) and then fight the artist with our now slightly superior skill.That is if we chose to fight, I think we can simply have us burn down our house and then jump into the ocean. This guarantees his plan is foiled since once magic is cast it cannot be regained unless you are a magick user like us. If we drift or swim far enough we can be ensured safety, then we just have to have a nap to heal, no one should be able to track us through the sea.Am I to understand that our balcony or window is over the sea? I thought it was, but the prompts about escaping make it seem like it is over a road or something. Anyways...>Taunt the Marquis and defy him. This is a dangerous path, but try to incite him into expending his magic to burn down your door. You think you will be able to escape the fire with your items, but your Orb by the entrance will be lost. You will remain tired, injured, unprotected, unhealed. However, when you face the Marquis again, he will have no magic at all. He will be weakened and susceptible, and perhaps that would make it easier to seize the island for yourself alone?We'll still have the one combat spell, plus maybe the help of the artist and the merc if we get there first and can do an ambush. Even if we fail, we at least foil him, whereas the other option is all or nothing.
To be clear, if either of our theories is correct enough to work, then I'll take the third evil option, but if not I'll go with my other vote.
The Orb had fallen to the floor and rolled to the entrance of the dwelling. Only now you notice the Orb has cracked. You can see glowing embers and an orange light flickering under the seam of the door. The heat of it causes the cracked Orb to shatter into fragments. It is utterly destroyed. And there is black smoke billowing, pouring tendrils of smoke rising with burning cinders setting the doorframe of your abode alight.
You grab your remaining possessions and leap outside your window onto the causeway that descends from the secret cove. What had begun as inclement weather has turned to a ceaseless, unrelenting downpour as the sand around you is dimpled by the drenching rain.
(You have chosen a path of greater peril and also greater reward. The Marquis depletes his magic as he burns your dwelling. He can invoke no further magic against you beyond what the ritual has already set in place.You are protected by the Flood. You cannot drown, and the Dreamsend Sea ensures that passions, delirium and hysteria will not sway you.The Marquis disrupted your healing ritual before it could be completed. You have lost the Orb, and until you find another means to return to your trance, it will be difficult for you to heal.)You are wounded, bleeding from a crossbow bolt to the shoulderYou are currently weakenedfrom casting the Lesser Rite: Drowning Caul,You may still cast spells, but at the peril of increased unintended consequencesThrough your boldness against the Governess and the assassin, your combat ability has improved from terrible to merely poor. Whilst you remain untrained, you believe you can overcome one who has never attempted to challenge another in combat, through your Will alone.You possess:1/ Heirloom Scissorsconcealed, swift, weak2/ Imperial Langkasukan MatchlockClose range, Loud, Armour-Piercing,Bulky, Unsteady, High recoil, Slow3/ Galernese Naval SabreCleave, Slash, Thrust, FearsomeHeavy, Slow, BulkyTarget: Head, Upper Body: Arms, ChestHandguard Protection: Highest
As you flee the burning ruin of your dwelling, fugitive conjectures chase your thoughts. The Marquis cannot be such a powerful sorceror - he could have attempted to split your home with tremors against the cliffside, or cast lightning drawn from the storm and sky. Perhaps his power is borrowed from another?The Marquis des Madelonnettes is a strange title to hold on this fortified island, garrisoned with soldiers accompanied by only gulls and rocks and sand. You are not sure this "Madelonnettes" even exists - you are not aware of any manor or grand estate here. Surely it cannot be a real place, that exists in the real world? A Marquis is usually bequeathed to one beneath a Duke, but the Duke has only a daughter and no son - the Marquis admitted this to you himself. Could the Marquis be a counterfeit title, adopted by a disgraced close relative of the Duke... such as his brother?
As you approach the abandoned Old Lighthouse the rain is falling in black torrents. The tide is rising steadily as the sea swells with the storm and the rocky coastal causeway from the shore to the Lighthouse is narrowing. You see with dismay that the Lighthouse fire is already ignited - but it appears to have been lit by mortal means only. The flame of the Lighthouse signal pyre is faint and weak, you can barely see it through the storm, and the lashing wind and rain could put it out. And there is something glinting around the flame: heaps of mirrors, jewels, coins, treasure... Is this where the Duke's coin has been hidden, instead of paying his soldiers?From the far side of the shore by the castle you can see torches. You wonder if the combined tales of the Governess, the Alewife and the Braggart (who is somehow still in spasms, vomiting eels and seawater, uncontrollably?!) have alarmed the militia and the guard to such an extent that they are scouring the shore and inland coast, urgently looking for witches in league with Vourukasha spy-assassins. They should be looking outwards to the sea, at the Black Armada that is waiting...
There is a forlorn small figure on the rocky shore. He is furiously slashing the air with what appears to be a driftwood stick he has found by the beach. When you approach him, Evariste is overjoyed. He snatches the naval sabre from you eagerly:O wise Sibyl, thank you! Thank you! I knew the Mistress of Fortune would not fail me! Stand back and watch as I cut this hated coward, this wicked Marquis down! My Beloved and I will be reunited together soon!(You have lost: Galernese Naval Sabre)
From the bottom of the Lighthouse a masked figure emerges. You can see from their attire and arrogant manner they have the Highborn bearing of Galernese nobility. Beneath the mask, which covers the entire face of the Highborn, you can see some shorn locks of dark hair, fluttering in the wind and storm. There is a sheathed, silver crosshilted sword by the masked Highborn's side.You notice some stirring above by the heaped mirrors, coins and treasure surrounding the Lighthouse signal pyre. Is someone leaning over and watching there?Evariste is focused on the masked noble before him. He screams his rage and defiance:Marquis des Madelonnettes! You wicked, evil coward! How dare you lay your hands upon my true Love, the beauteous Lady Dorotea Galerne! You will pay with your miserable life!>Appeal to Evariste and his sense of reason and love for Dorotea. Point to the guards and the torches along the shore. Try and persuade Evariste to give the sword back to you, if he is caught duelling he will be exiled from his Beloved forever.>You have an ominous sense of foreboding that if blood is shed on this shore, the Marquis will be strengthened. Point to the faint Lighthouse signal pyre, the glint of mirrors, coins and treasure there. Warn Evariste that the Marquis is an unnatural being of horrifying power, he is enacting some dark ritual and that this is a trap.>No words you say can possibly dissuade Evariste from his Beloved and his foolish duel. Invoke the Lesser Rite: Butcher's Eye. Make his hand slip and the edge of the blade cut into his palm; Evariste will be disarmed, he will drop the sword and be unable to fight.>Ignore Evariste. Without warning, aim the matchlock at the Masked Highborn approaching from the Lighthouse and open fire. You have a good chance of killing them at this distance, and saving Evariste from fighting.>Ignore Evariste. Aim the matchlock at whomever is hiding above by the Lighthouse signal pyre. Even if you miss, the gunshot will frighten them into revealing themselves.>Stand back for a moment and do nothing. Is something still missing here? Is the Marquis so arrogant that he approaches with no companion, accomplice, witness or second of his own? Maybe Kospel will arrive, and honour his promise?
>>5097724(Your senses tell you that this is an incredibly dangerous situation. It is best to make just a single, simple choice.If you really dare to attempt a write-in, bear in mind that the Masked Noble, Evariste, and the Hidden Figure above will likely react immediately to the first and only the first simple action you perform)
>>5097724You know, our Charm and Will are both good, yet Evariste is so fucking stubborn I consider using either of them to be borderline useless in this scenario. Regardless of the reason, the fact that it is Evariste that we have to persuade makes it not worth it.Still...>"Wait Evariste, I persuaded someone to be your second and witness, this may be them, wait to see if they unveil their face.">Aim the matchlock at whomever is hiding above by the Lighthouse signal pyre. Even if you miss, the gunshot will frighten them into revealing themselves.>If it is the assassin, fire-spell them.We'll have to use our lesser rite on what I presume is the assassin, then deal with them somehow. Perhaps even burning our fire spell on them. Or we could just use our fire spell to deal with them outright and use our lesser rite against the Marquis ̶d̶e̶ ̶S̶a̶d̶e̶ de Madelonettes and just hope the artist can kill him, if not we can join in and without a weapon the marquis should fall to both of us, or perhaps we can let the marquis and artist exhaust themselves and then fight him sequentially.
>>5097746Ah, in that case.>Ignore Evariste. Aim the matchlock at whomever is hiding above by the Lighthouse signal pyre. Even if you miss, the gunshot will frighten them into revealing themselves.
>Maybe if we can get a word in after the gunshot do the first greentext prompt of appealing to Evariste and his love for Dorotea, after all this may be witness paid by the marquis to get Evariste exiled, and then how will he be with his love?
In the drenching downpour and rain, you wince as the wound in your shoulder gnaws at you. The crossbow bolt struck deep and at first there was only numbness, but after you extracted the splintered arrowhead the wound is so terrible you wonder if your arm might just fall off. The assassin may have smeared some poison or sleep concoction on the arrowhead edge, to ensure that so long as the bolt cut skin it would render its target unconscious. But the trance of a Sibyl grants you dreams and visions immune to mortal influence.You are threading the slow-burning match cord, clamping its burning taper to the mechanism of the serpentine - it makes you think of pulling a thread through the eye of a needle. The firearm is already primed and loaded. Silently, you curse Captain Kospel - a coinless promise from an unpaid mercenary is truly worth nothing! He has failed to even arrive as a witness to the duel. You really, really hope he does go mad, when he touches the dice and gambles again. Perhaps fate choses perversely to turn your curse back at you. You raise the heavy weapon (if only you had a linstock, or chosen a cross-hilted sword to brace against the barrel of this cumbersome weapon), open the pan, aim at the shadow in the Old Lighthouse tower. You depress the trigger and the serpentine falls. There is a hissing sputter, and fizzle of smoke. The black powder in the pan is sodden in the rain. Firing the matchlock outside in the downpour of the storm has likely rendered the weapon useless.(The Imperial Langkasukan Matchlock has misfired. The sodden powder in the pan has rendered it inert)
Evariste draws the sabre from the scabbard and advances towards the Masked Noble. He scythes the air between them with his crude, untrained sword-strokes. Evariste is screaming and cursing in fury:You deserve to die, you coward! You... cut her golden hair! What did you do to her?His opponent stands still, listless, silent.The sea and the tide are rising in the storm. The Lighthouse will be cut-off from the shore soon by heaving waves. In the distance, you hear the sonorous peal of the High Tide bell from the castle. It sounds like a death knell.>Ignore this situation. No-one present appears to have noticed or even reacted to you, they are too focused on the duel. Run past Evariste, the Masked Noble, along the slippery rocky path and climb the Lighthouse Tower. You need to discover who is hiding above in the shadows, by the mirrors, coins and treasure heaped next to the signal pyre. The surging tide may cut off the Lighthouse soon.>Run past Evariste and unmask the Noble. You are not sure if this may provoke them to cut you down - you feel your scissor-dagger would be as a toy against the reach of their silver cross-hilted sword. And the reckless Evariste may despise you, for he intends to kill the Marquis himself.>Disarm Evariste by invoking the Lesser Rite: Butcher's Eye. He will cut his hand by accident, drop the sabre, and be unable to fight the duel.>Stand back, watch and wait.
>>5097816>Ignore this situation. No-one present appears to have noticed or even reacted to you, they are too focused on the duel. Run past Evariste, the Masked Noble, along the slippery rocky path and climb the Lighthouse Tower. You need to discover who is hiding above in the shadows, by the mirrors, coins and treasure heaped next to the signal pyre. The surging tide may cut off the Lighthouse soon.
>>5097816Actually, wait, no. I think the masked person is Dorotea, her hair isn't blond here but it is shorn, and she has a sword like the one the governess was carrying.Switching to...>Run past Evariste and unmask the Noble. You are not sure if this may provoke them to cut you down - you feel your scissor-dagger would be as a toy against the reach of their silver cross-hilted sword. And the reckless Evariste may despise you, for he intends to kill the Marquis himself.
Evariste was perceptive enough to notice the Marquis is a coward. The Marquis prefers to puppet others, command the marionettes to murder themselves.But Evariste was not perceptive enough to discern the true plan of the Marquis. The ritual to compel him to murder his own Beloved.The High Tide bell tolls for death. From the castle battlements the Duke of Galerne leaps and plummets onto the sea rocks below. Had you risked staying at the castle, you might have had a chance to dissuade him. The Duke knows not that it was his disinherited brother who ruined him, hiding the castle coin and treasure by the Old Lighthouse. Why would his brother do such a thing? After the Duke showed him such kindness, even helping to conceal his brother's disgrace by conferring him with the counterfeit title of Marquis, and warning him never to reveal his face? The Duke clutches a golden-haired portrait of the daughter he once knew. He spoilt and indulged her every whim, even letting her pursue unladylike pursuits like swordplay and her fascination with duels.Yet the wicked Marquis indulged Dorotea even more. Encouraged her with decadent and subversive desires. Showed her his exotic collections of treasures, boasting of his powerful magic. How unjust it is that she cannot rule the island unless it is through marriage! Perhaps if she cut and dyed her hair and started dressing like a man, practising swordplay, adopting the duelling bravado of the Galernese navy...Through the Tarot of another, the Marquis learns of an ancient ritual rooted in Galernese legend. The Marquis is disinherited and can never rule Galerne as he is now. But perhaps if he were to claim it through this ritual, bargained assistance of a pirate fleet through coin and treasure? Sacrifice the bloodline of his brother the Duke and his daughter, place her bloodied hand upon the shore?
There is a figure running from the distance, approaching from the castle. Behind him you see the torches of pursuing guards. The armoured figure is shouting something towards you, for you to stop... he is holding some sort of painting canvas spread in his hands like a banner, a second portrait of a dark-haired Dorotea...Kospel's greatsword is missing. He had to fight through some guards to reach you - perhaps he really is a spy. Whilst Kospel has indeed broken his promise to meet you here before the High Tide bell, he has decided to come all the same. You run towards the masked Noble and try to shove Evariste aside, before the curved cutting edge of the sabre descends. As you tear off the mask you see Evariste's face whiten in horror. The Galernese Naval Sabre is not for the faint-hearted. Of the three swords, this blade was most likely to deliver a killing blow. As you push Evariste aside, unbalance him mid-swing, the blade cuts across his motionless victim.(The Lady Dorotea is mortally wounded. In mere moments, she will bleed to death)Evariste falls to his knees, cradling the bleeding ruin of his Beloved. The sabre falls from his hand, as Evariste lets out an inhuman howl of anguish. The Lady Dorotea's arm fall limply to her side, and as Evariste rocks her body in his arms weeping, you see her hand press into the rain-drenched sand. The imprint pools with rivulets of red.The flame of the signal pyre upon the Lighthouse flares and begins to grow brighter, even amidst the black deluge of rain. Within moments, even across the vast stretch of storm-lashed sea, the distant armada will see it and respond.Illuminated by the twisting, unnatural flames of the signal pyre, the black shadow of the Lighthouse Tower lengthens, falls across Evariste and Dorotea, his dying love. There is a ritual you know, Life River. Immersion in a natural stream of running water will restore even the mortally wounded to life. With some effort and exertion, you could shape this rite, adapting it to use the Sea instead to restore Dorotea to life. But to do so you would need to call upon the Flood. You will have to face the Marquis whilst exhausted and injured, and with no protection at all.Choose what you wish to retrieve:>Galernese Naval Sabre>Crosshilt Silver ÉpéeChoose ONE only:>Shape the spell Life River with the power of the Flood. Dorotea will be restored. You will lose all protection against the Marquis. And in the time you take to do this, the Lighthouse signal flame will grow stronger...>Abandon Evariste and the corpse of his Beloved. This is the fate he has brought upon himself. Run across the slippery rocky path to the Lighthouse Tower with Kospel, and face the shadow above.
>>5097907>Galernese Naval Sabre>Shape the spell Life River with the power of the Flood. Dorotea will be restored. You will lose all protection against the Marquis. And in the time you take to do this, the Lighthouse signal flame will grow stronger...
>>5097907>Retrieve both, we will awkwardly stick the epee through our dress like a needle through pinched clothe to holster it if need be and accept being encumbered for a few moments.>Shape the spell Life River with the power of the Flood. Dorotea will be restored. You will lose all protection against the Marquis. And in the time you take to do this, the Lighthouse signal flame will grow stronger...>When Kospel gets near, we will hand him the Galernese Naval Sabre, thus arming ourselves appropriately. Sadly we will be without protection from charms, but hopefully with the two of us we can bumrush the marquis in the close quarters of the lighthouse.
>>5097916>>5097920(I will allow the choice the choice to carry both swords for the time being. But there will be a consequence to this...)You cannot tell if Evariste's face streams with tears or rain. But you explain to him your plan. He obeys you in dumb disbelief. You think without this meagre hope you have granted to him, Evariste would likely not have seen any further reason to live. Together with the grim-faced Kospel, you drag and submerge Dorotea's dying body into the sea. There is a long furrow of crimson sand trailing behind her. The armada has advanced. You can see sails and masts and rigging unaided now, even without your destroyed Orb. The ships appear to be manoeuvring into a firing formation upon the fishing village and castle. The torch-bearing guards who had followed and given chase to Kospel are panicked and start turning away.(You have created the spell:Sibyl's SacrificeFor you, this rite has been cast into the Sea.Another may find it in the future...)
You feel the protection of the Flood draining from you, as you turn from the sight of Evariste cradling the rain-drenched body of his Beloved against the shore. You have no notion of whether the rite even worked. Dorotea remains deathly pale and lifeless, but the bleeding has stopped at least. Or perhaps she has bled out already...As you run through the surging waves and slippery rocks down to the Lighthouse with Kospel clanking in his heavy armour you see him suddenly slip and lose his footing. The rocks are slick with rain and Kospel grasps at seaweed, at ledges, scrabbles desperately for any handhold...(Kospel hurls his possessions at you as he tries to unburden himself to no avail. He falls into the sea and is submerged beneath the waves. You are left alone.)You receive the following items:Dark-haired Portrait of DoroteaSealed oilskin sheathe (contains the Tiger Head Dagger, or: Rare Flintlock Gun-Dagger)Choose ONE:>Galernese Naval Sabre>Crosshilt Silver Épée
>>5097976>Galernese Naval SabreThat is rather unfortunate. There goes the entire point of us taking both weapons. I was actually worried it would encumber us and make us slip on the rocks.
Rare Flintlock Gun-DaggerConcealed, Close range, Loud, Exotic, Armour-Piercing, Swift, Reliable, Surprise Attack, Slow Reload(as dagger)Concealed, Close Range, Exotic, Swift, Coup-de-grace
Summary:You are bleeding and severely wounded in the shoulder. Unattended, the injury has worsenedYou are currently exhaustedfrom casting the Lesser Rite: Drowning Caul,from shaping the Greater Rite: Sibyl's SacrificeYou may struggle to control any magic you unleash, and you greatly fear its consequencesYou possess:1/ Heirloom Scissorsconcealed, swift, weak2/ Useless Imperial Langkasukan Matchlock(misfire, from rain-sodden black powder in pan)3/Rare Flintlock Gun-DaggerConcealed, Close range, Loud, Exotic, Armour-Piercing, Swift, Reliable, Surprise Attack, Slow Reload(as dagger)Concealed, Close Range, Exotic, Swift, Coup-de-grace(Drawn from Kospel's sealed oilskin sheath, and fired swiftly without hesitation, this weapon will not misfire in the rain)4/ Galernese Naval SabreCleave, Slash, Thrust, FearsomeHeavy, Slow, BulkyTarget: Head, Upper Body: Arms, ChestHandguard Protection: Highest5/Dark-haired Portrait of Dorotea(rolled in sealed case)
Your mind is drifting upon a bleeding sea of pain and delirium. It would be so easy to just take a deep breath, close your eyes and sink beneath the crimson waves...You reach the top of the Lighthouse Tower, gasping. There is blood in your own mouth somehow and you nearly choke on it.By the unnatural warped light of the signal pyre, refracted amongst mirrors and the heaped piles of coins, jewels, treasure, you see a flickering shadow. The heat and flame of the signal fire is so intense, it is hard to look directly at it. The shadow of the Marquis is turned away from you and he is crouched upon the ground. He has no magic left to fight you with, but there is a strange firearm laid upon the stone floor near his hand, as well as a duelling sword that resembles a more ornate version of Dorotea's Training Foil. The Marquis seems to be distracted, examining the scattered cards of a tarot deck, your tarot deck... is he trying to regain his magic?
"Osirantinous Reborn"Marquis Colichemarde / Duelling Sword(choose ONLY one:)>The sacrifice of your dwelling means that the Marquis expended all his magic: he has nothing left to fight you. Without warning, run up to the Marquis, stab him in the head with Kospel's flintlock gun-dagger, and pull the trigger>Raise the Galernese Naval Sabre, aim for his head and try to cleave the Marquis in two>You are not sure if you have any strength left for a physical attack given your injured arm and severe wound. The Marquis is surrounded by the stolen wealth of his brother, the dead Duke. Invoke the last of your magic in one final rite: Furnace Of Avarice. Avenge the Duke, the lifeless Dorotea and the grief-stricken, infatuated artist Evariste. Burn the treacherous Marquis to ash.>The Marquis is attempting to regain his magic. You know the Marquis is obsessed with paintings currently. Forfeit the element of surprise, advance towards the Marquis and warn him that unless he surrenders the tarot deck and returns it to you, you will cut the Dark-haired Portrait Of Dorotea with your Heirloom Scissors >Without warning the Marquis, actually cut the Dark-haired Portrait Of Dorotea with your Heirloom Scissors.>You wonder if fate causes everything to happen for a reason. Why not draw the Langkasukan matchlock and fire it at the Marquis?
>>5098020>Without warning the Marquis, actually cut the Dark-haired Portrait Of Dorotea with your Heirloom Scissors.lmao, this guy figures himself a god reborn, but to be reborn he has to die first. Cut the painting just in case him dying is part of some spell or ritual and this will fuck it up. If it somehow re-kills Dorotea, oh well.>If he doesn't seem diminished or doesn't die or we don't sense his magick fading, then just burn him to death, or if it seems like that will take too long then stab him with the dagger since it is swift and then shoot him.
>>5098020Actually...you know what, I'm reading too much into the name of the sword. He lost his magick, wouldn't have seen or heard us revive Dorotea through the pelting rain and wind, wouldn't know his plans are foiled, but would naturally be trying to regain his magick to either deal with us or to complete his plan.Hefting the sabre with our busted arm may fuck us, the magick in this enclosed space may kill us too and with all the metal around may scatter enough light to definitely alert the fleet, but anyone can stab someone.>The sacrifice of your dwelling means that the Marquis expended all his magic: he has nothing left to fight you. Without warning, run up to the Marquis, stab him in the head with Kospel's flintlock gun-dagger, and pull the trigger
>>5098020>>The sacrifice of your dwelling means that the Marquis expended all his magic: he has nothing left to fight you. Without warning, run up to the Marquis, stab him in the head with Kospel's flintlock gun-dagger, and pull the trigger
>>5098020>The sacrifice of your dwelling means that the Marquis expended all his magic: he has nothing left to fight you. Without warning, run up to the Marquis, stab him in the head with Kospel's flintlock gun-dagger, and pull the trigger
Without hesitating you leap forward.You are drawing Kospel's weapon from its concealed sheathe. Despite not being able to discern its unusual origin, and the nature of its Flintlock mechanism, the Alewife was shrewd enough to covet this hidden Tiger Head Dagger, even when you could not see it. And Kospel with his years of mercenary experience was shrewd enough to wrap it in oilskin to protect it against the drenching rain. You wonder as to the origin of this gunpowder weapon. It seems almost Galernese in style, but the tiger head is unusual and barbarous. If only there was someone on the island to explain it to you...? Perhaps Kospel won it from another earlier whilst gambling? Or maybe he found it from another adventure of his... perhaps he truly did fight a vampire, singlehandedly, alone?The howling flame of the signal fire contorts, reminds you of another horrifying searing flame, one pressed indelibly against your flesh forever...The blade of Kospel's Rare Flintlock Gun-Dagger pierces the skull of the Marquis as you depress the trigger. There is a flash, a spray of pyrite sparks, a thunderous blast and roar that shakes the heavens, overturns the raging tempest and the boiling sea. The Old Lighthouse trembles violently. The same old Tower built on the ancient rocks where two brothers once landed and fought over who would be the first to touch the shore. The conqueror cut off his own hand... threw it onto the beach and bloody sand to be the first to claim it...Your near vision is obscured by a haze of black powder smoke. Your ears are ringing with the explosion. The old Lighthouse begins to lean and tilt to one side. Coins, jewels, mirrors and treasure are rolling and clattering to the edge. You wonder if your wound has truly made you delusional when you hear the echo of a second, distant detonation.By the fishing village and castle, the Vourukasha Black Armada has amassed. You already delayed for far too long to stop them - the witch-pirates have seen the signal of the Marquis and his twisted ritual. The gunports of the galleons are raised and the cannons open fire. The walls and battlements of the castle are blasted and the fishing village is raked with broadside after broadside. You watch in horror and you can almost hear screams carried through the howling storm. But the distant Vourukasha cannonade and bombardment is not the explosion you heard. For all of a sudden, amidst the warships, the forest of dead masts and rigging - the Vourukasha flagship explodes.
You knew of only two locations on this island, where you could draw on the ancient trance of the oracles to heal. One was by the secret cove, your hidden dwelling, now a burnt ruin. Another by the castle promontory, near the battlements where the Duke leapt to his death, but now raked and demolished by the Vourukasha cannonade. There is nowhere left for you to retreat or hide. No refuge, no shelter for you to rest or recover or heal.The Marquis is not dead. He turns and you realise you will never see his beautiful and youthful face, for you have indeed ended his twisted ritual. The black torrents of rain are receding, and the unnatural storm and winds are breaking. The signal pyre upon the Lighthouse has shrunken, to a weakened and diminished flame.The Marquis cannot speak, for the piercing wound and gunshot of Kospel's flintlock has blasted much of his jaw and left a fist-sized hole in his skull. His youthful, beautiful face has been ruined forever. But to your utter horror the Marquis rises and approaches you, sword and wheel-lock in hand. How can he see you? The ruin of his face has no eyes...The Marquis rams the thin rapier edge of his decadent sword into your chest. You feel yourself screaming and collapsing as the blade pierces you and pins you to the stone of the tower where you fall, bleeding onto the stolen tarot, your tarot, that the Marquis took from you.(You have received a mortal wound.)(You are dying.)(You have no strength left to wield a sword.)
The Marquis is readying his double-barrelled wheel-lock. It is a slow, cumbersome weapon, but he is turning both of the ornamented barrels of the beautifully embellished pistol towards you...>Reach for the Heirloom Scissor-Dagger. Shred and cut as many tarot cards as you can. Will it be enough?>With the very last of your strength, pull the decadent sword that pins you to the stone tower from your chest. Clasp your arms around the Marquis, embrace him and pull him together with you over the Lighthouse precipice, into the watery depths of the sea and the Flood. Will this be your last choice before you drown?>Could you try to trick this horror somehow? Surrender your useless, inert Langkasukan matchlock, that misfired earlier. If the Marquis snatches it and fires it at you, instead of clumsily resorting to his own wheel-lock, it will misfire again, and confuse him. But will you bleed to death before then?>The only way to destroy the Marquis, once and for all, is to gather all your magic, glance upon the heaped coin, jewels and stolen treasure, the scattered tarot, think of the Marquis, his cruelty, evil and greed, and invoke the Greater Rite: Furnace of Avarice.
>>5098218>>Could you try to trick this horror somehow? Surrender your useless, inert Langkasukan matchlock, that misfired earlier. If the Marquis snatches it and fires it at you, instead of clumsily resorting to his own wheel-lock, it will misfire again, and confuse him. But will you bleed to death before then?>Reach for the Heirloom Scissor-Dagger. Shred and cut as many tarot cards as you can. Will it be enough?
(XV: The Devil is destroyed)(XVI: The Tower is ruined)(By destroying the Tarot, you have lost the source of your visions)Of the ancient Oracle and her daughters there are many tales. One saw her fate, but was helpless to prevent it. Some kept truth for themselves and filled others with lies. Many looked into the void, and saw nothing at all.And there was one who saw the future, and sacrificed everything to change it.
There is a lonely woman walking by a shipwreck near the shore. She is elderly and frail, infirm as if unnaturally aged when the years suddenly caught up with her. Her face looks like it once possessed beauty, determination, fearless courage and Will. But now her thoughts are muddled and her sight is poor. She is stooping to gather seashells from the beach, seashells encrusted with golden grains of sand. When the old woman raises them to her ear, she can hear the sea and the tides, the swell and echo of memories.
There is a madman drowning upon a storm-lashed sea. He is an adventurer and mercenary who broke his promise, but who also kept his honour somehow afterwards. He is struggling to unbuckle his heavy armour, before he is pulled beneath the dark tide. A heavy log of driftwood floats near him, about the length of a greatsword, almost within his reach...
There is a young artist sheltering his beloved from the rain and wind. She does not remember who she is, how she got to this beach, or even who her protector truly was or did. But the look on her face when she glances at the artist is a look of trust and love.
Beneath a pile of smouldering ruins and timbers, a fat drunkard rises and smears dung and rubble away from the flowery tiger and serpent tattoos on his skin. Before he passed out he thought there was a fishing village here? Didn't he lose something of his whilst gambling? The fat drunkard punches himself in the head a few times. No, this is not a dream. He is awake and it really hurts.
Upon the shores of a savage jungle island, near the battered remnants of a broken flotilla of ships, there are pirates arguing, shouting amongst themselves. They are drawing cutlasses and knives and firearms, waving them and accusing each other. Their witch-captain is dead - she should never have trusted the signal of that decadent noble lord on the lighthouse, bound her fate to him and aided him with her magic. Still, the armada and expedition was not a complete failure. They took some captives and treasure. Nearby, a wilful young woman is struggling with herself, for there are no lessons in her schoolbooks that will summon the courage she needs for this situation...
There is a dead corpse dressed in luxurious finery drifting upon the sea. The salt-scorched face of the corpse may once have beheld beauty, noble bearing and command, but the ruin of the jawless face suggests it was possessed with terrible passions and cruel hunger. The birds that peck at the eyeless face are all that lives upon it.
The cry of seagulls leads the old woman onwards as she climbs the causeway by the secluded cove, back to the burnt ruin of her home. Her vision is quite gone - she is blind. There is nothing left for her but to sleep and dream.(END)
(Souvarine says:Thank you very much for playing this quest! I hoped you enjoyed it!517 total used and unused images for this playthrough, around 265mbThe secret QM mission here that was hidden all along: design a game setting and world this time where no-one even thinks of or references wh40k memes or god-emperors or thrones lol. Ok maybe you thought of Pirates Of The Caribbean+tarot+gothic sadism+Jane Austen lol. Utterly terrified with the first roll if someone would get IV:Emperor and insta-ruin everything for me hehe. I will let you decide if I won in the end...To win this game as the Sibyl, all you had to do was imagine and predict the future. A lot of the legends and characters referenced fictional archetypes from literature, videogames, films or real-life etc. so I was hoping people would have a strong instinct of what might occur. Generally I sought to do my best to make the spells, items and rulings fair and balanced, without giving too much away. I was very delighted by the analysis and references people found this time, eg The Picture of Dorian Gray, the Marquis de Sade. All the players committed to really brave and daring choices, fighting, magic... it makes the narrative more exciting! In particular I liked how people engaged no-heal hardcore difficulty at the Sibyl's dwelling hehe. I will stay in the thread and I am happy to answer any questions or unexplained events, as there were a lot of moving parts (I caught one mistake of mine, hopefully I did not make any others). Thank you again for playing!
>>5098342A mostly happy ending. I’ll take it. I want to know what the paths to victory is for the other characters and how the Privateer looks like since we never saw her.
>>5098336lmao, so the fat drunkard was the outlaw-monk all along, or at least the one the PC was looking for.>>5098342Thank you for running this quest Souvarine, I don't have many criticisms this time around, whereas last time I had pages worth. What criticisms I do have I'll choose not to voice since they are minor and I had a lot of fun.I would ask what goals each PC would've had and their possible items and abilities and potential playstyles. I also would ask if we could've found the Barbarian in our Sibyl playthrough and where we could've found him. What difference would taking the seashell or tarot deck cause? Who was the assassin? What was the nature of the Marquis's ritual and what did each materiel component do and what would've happened had we destroyed certain aspects of it like (presumably) the portraits. What were some of the branching pathes we could've taken had we decided to visit the Marquis early or the duke?In general I got a lot more of the references this time without feeling the need to google, though part of that is because in the last thread I was particularly lazy with looking up some of the references or simply choose not to or to defer it to a later time when I go back through the archive.All in all, I'm pretty happy with the ending.
>>5098383hehe, I might keep some of the details for the other characters secret for the time being... save it for if I can think of something later ^_^>>5098458no need to hold anything back, if there is criticism for this or the Preceptor playthrough, anything you thought did not make sense or was unfair please let me know, I possess pretty strong attributes in retardedness and autismo lol I probably will not seethe hehe ^_^I would say I try not to design a "victory path" because it tends to lead to railroads and frustration on my side if something I personally "want" to happen diverges from player choice or perception. With the last Invultua setting I was using a spreadsheet of old campaign scenarios, encounters and ideas built from games I ran (maybe this is why it had a disjointed feel and also too much wh40k style confusion etc) I was wondering this time round if because the setting was a bit more coherent and based on history (basically - approximately the Age of Sail era, if you have played pillars of eternity 2 I wanted that sort of pirate jungle island feeling, but also with the literature of the Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte etc period)So the only section you guys missed was I had a scenario ready for if you stayed at the castle, where you could encounter the Duke and listen in on his meeting with the "Knight Of Coins" (maybe not the Eschatonomist, but a similar moneylender merchant sorceror archetype) where the Duke would have to explain his financial situation etc. If the fight with the Governess had not happened the spy assassin (allied to Vourukasha) fight was planned for the Duke's meeting. Originally I had intended for the Orb to be used in the Sea Observatory at the Castle (there are primitive optical telescope things there, and lots of cannons) to alert the castle to the fleet etc.Some other hidden things:- the reference to the seagull guano / cesspit dung gunsulphur was to hint at the chance of being able to make a primitive explosive or grenade (get blackpowder, gunsulphur from castle cannon, seagull nests / guano near your dwelling)- as you probably guessed, the plan was that items you did not take or use could be used against you. If you healed and went laden with all items at full health against the Marquis he would cast Furnace Of Avarice on you! If you took all three swords from the Governess to deny them for the fight with the Marquis, he would begin the duel by giving the masked Dorotea his gun. And the slightly evil hidden trick also - because the Marquis is using magic stolen from you, he gets a protection similar to yours as well. I think it is likely he took the Protection from Fire (given what he did to your dwelling) so maybe the bait of the treasure and Furnace Of Avarice would not be such a good idea hehe
Some other paths- as foreseen by the Sibyl in her own memory of the three Sisters, expending all her magic when exhausted would age her and cause her to go blind. The safest way for the Sibyl to use magic is to actually never wake up and interact with the real world. The nature of the magic items is that they exist both in the real world and in the dream (notice how in the very first dream forest section, the orb could still be used to look at the dream sky)The idea with the scissors (as you seemed to have worked out) is in contrast to swords and firearms, the scissors can be used in the Sibyl's dreams, the scissors can be wielded even when wounded and near death, can damage magic items like paintings, cards and still stab someone or cut their threads in the dream world. I was wondering if anyone would try to attempt the entire playthrough without ever leaving your dwelling and waking up lol. Staying at the Castle, investigating the Hariolat Tower, the Sea Observatory telescopes with the Orb, would allow you to attempt to manipulate the duel remotely from the dream (obviously would need to deal with the guards, but that is actually easier than you might think... for instance, distract them by showing them the Black Armada, accuse the Governess of being a spy, etc.)- there exists a conversation option in this playthrough (even without the Seashell) to get the Braggart, Alewife etc on your side, and never even discover who Kospel was. Kospel is indeed here to act as a spy for whomever pays him (if you remember, he was also harbouring some wanted fugitive at the gallery/theatre in the last playthrough). This option would lead to more intrigue scenes at the castle, make it easier to discover the masked Dorotea etc at the cost of not having Kospel's assistance at the duel.- I was really impressed, all the players chose really consistently during the duel. If you really wanted the "dark conqueror" evil ending, threatening to cut Dorotea's painting at the end would intrigue the Marquis and give you that scenario - imagine the irony of saving her life to first frustrate the Marquis, only to use her life later to tempt him to bargain with you...- something I quite like to do is make a few of the concepts allegorical. For example I mentioned in the past that the voidships are not really "spaceships" in the last game, you can imagine them to look like massive spaceships but they are more vessels for transporting human consciousness. Similarly this time round the "sea" may not be an actual sea, it is probably not that dissimilar to the astral sea in the last game. So the seashell is another type of oracle similar to the orb, but it allows you to hear as opposed to seeing things. Used at the fishing village or the castle would bring all sorts of gossip and rumours to your ears...
>>5098522I figured there was a chance for the guano pit to be used for a resupply, but I just want it was a chance for more ammo.Why did the assassin attack us, that was perhaps one of the only things that felt weird, it maybe would've made sense if they knew who we were or if she worked for the Marquis, but if they were just an infiltrator for the pirates then it seems odd they'd attack someone that the governess just accused of being one of them or that they'd go for us over someone more important to the organization or defence of the island.I wasn't worried about us killing ourselves via slinging as useless fire spell against an immune vampire, largely because I had other reasons I didn't want to use the fire spell. Since I don't own the system this is based on, I don't know if spellcasting is slower in terms of initiative than melee, so I intended to use the gundagger (once we acquired it) or some other melee weapon despite the warnings about our fucked up arm, since heavy or not, a cutlass is still just a sword weighing a few pounds, we'd be able to wield it fine with one hand either way, same with the dagger except it is swift and light. That and there was the thing I mentioned earlier about worrying about us casting the spell surrounded by all the treasure as I wasn't sure the signal pyre was bright enough yet so I didn't want to set off a bigger beacon with our spell and all the metal.>>5098568Interesting. I sort of understood that about the sea this time, much easier than in the last thread, but this had nothing to do with seeing the similarities between the two threads. Rather, I'd been reminded of a similar setting with a sea of a similar nature, the name sort of linked my mind to said setting.>I was really impressed, all the players chose really consistently during the duel...? I was the only voter during the duel. Unless you mean later when we confronted the Marquis in the lighthouse just afterwards, then there was another voter with me participating. You can tell by the IDs.
>>5098586>Rather, I'd been reminded of a similar setting with a sea of a similar nature, the name sort of linked my mind to said setting.Hehe yes, I have played a LOT of Bloodborne, and Lovecraftian fishing village references heheThe reason for the spy assassin from Vourukasha is that the Marquis promised the pirate armada gold and plunder, but the pirates (similar to the guards) have heard the Duke has none.The mental image I had is a bit like Pillars Of Eternity 2 (not sure if anyone has played that game). I made Vourukasha a loose alliance that fights and betrays even themselves. Vourukasha is also affiliated with Langkasuk in some mysterious ways... let us just say, the Sibyl absolutely does not look like or resemble any of the barbarian islanders (some of whom may not be quite as primitive as imagined hehe...) Some armada faction has hence sent a spy to check in on the Duke's meeting, but the attack on the governess has disrupted and thwarted this. So I think the overall result was you achieved a shortcut, gained some fighting experience, but at the cost of alerting the guards and delaying Kospel's arrival at the duel.Interesting how you were thinking of the game very mechanically in terms of dnd or just ttrpg style initiative, that is something I have to bear in mind. I am generally making a more story driven judgement call, being diceless here etc. the weapon descriptors indicate the approximate order (eg at the very end, the Marquis uses the fast duelling sword similar to Dorotea's training foil first, then has to fiddle a bit to ready his wheel-lock). You are correct to have detected that the treasure heaped around the signal fire was bait for magic. The descriptions around the three duelling swords were actually intended for if you chose to fight the masked Dorotea yourself (the emphasis on handguard protection and the blood handprint ritual etc, and also the different target areas head chest limbs etc).
>>5098620I've played the first one, haven't completed it yet. Haven't bought the second one yet either.I understood this was a diceless, more narrative system. I just wasn't sure how fast spell-casting is, my gut says it'd be slower than shooting someone or attacking with a light weapon.Will we be playing as another character in this setting in the aftermath of this playthrough? Things seemed to wrap up nicely for the island and many of the characters in general. Or will you be making another quest with a different setting?
>>5098786I have not decided yet. If there is enough interest I will try to think of a new scenario etc. and see if some inspiration comes along.In the meantime, why not return to the Hariolat's Tower, and gaze into the fate of another?>>5094511>>5094513(all of these remain available)(choose ONE...)>The BARBARIAN>The GOVERNESS>The PRIVATEER>The LIBERTINE>The OUTLAW-MONK(...and roll 1d78 again)>>5095374
Rolled 60 (1d78)>>5098933Hmm...While it'd be interesting to get a point of view from someone familiar with the seas and the pirates, or from one of the characters we are already familiar with, and I do like the balance of the governess's attributes and the possibility of magick...I think I'll go with the Barbarian. We haven't seen anything from him so far I think.Though I admit to tending towards the more civilized Jane Austen elements and other such elements and that of the seas more than the wilderness and the jungle, we still have to get the other side.>The BARBARIAN
Rolled 58 (1d78)>>5098933>>The PRIVATEERWe never saw her at all or her plot threads
>>5098933I'll switch to >>5098958 to speed things along smoothly.
Hither comes the Tale Of The Conqueror, who swept the Dead Land with Axe and Wheel, and a dark eye possessed by Fire and Flood. Fate saw not the Lifeless lashed upon the lightning tree who brought hunger, madness and blood. To seize the Empty Throne is to tread upon the bones of the weak, to feast amidst the banquet of swords and burn what little life has given: (Bring into the world only the items you believe you need. Of the ten items below, you may choose to call forth every item, a handful or even none of the items at all. It is advised to consider how some of the items may be used in combination, but Fate warns you that greed may bring a terrible consequence. You will begin with none of these belongings, though fortune may permit you to discover, trade, steal or scavenge whatever you need at a cost later.)
>1/Conqueror's SwordBulky, Heavy, Brutal, Cleave, Impale, Knockdown, Parry, Armour Crush, Fearsome, Lamentation Of Women, DoomedAn ancestral blade drawn from the starmetal altar through a riddle now forgotten to mankind. From the eastern realms of the old world arose one who claimed the decadent empire of Califerne. The prophesy foretold of a mighty warrior who strode through time to defeat a horror of the wilds, yet met their demise before an unknown, humble woman. Those that wield this terrible weapon cannot escape its doom.
>2/Slave ScourgeCruel, Bleed, Disarm, Tiring, WeakThe goad of beast and man alike. It is said that the Marquis des Madelonnettes possesses a treasured collection of these. Known as the Cat o' Nine Tails amongst the Galernese Navy, administered over the cannon barrel for sedition and mutiny amongst miscreants and midshipmen. Is the savage the one who endures it, or the one who wields it?
>3/Trumbash Knife-Axe(as throwing knife only)Short-Range, Balanced, Swift(as axe)Slow, Cleave, Fearsome, Exotic, CeremonialBroad sickle-shaped blade balanced with a heavy carved wooden handle as counterweight. The decoration of the pommel depicts the elongated skulls of a head-binding tribe. The bearer of this weapon is venerated as king, and worthy of tribute. The knife-axe may serve many purposes, for harvest, for trade, for ceremony, for war.
>4/Galernese Hand BombardMid-range, Bulky, Heavy, Deafening, Devastating, Explosive, Incendiary, Siegebreaker, Slow, Unreliable, Inaccurate, DangerousThe experienced cannoneers of the Galernese Navy warn it is almost impossible to fire this weapon without injury to self and others. There is a rumour amongst traders that Imperial Langkasuk is interested in making a copy of its mechanism.
>5/Flint KnifeConcealed, Swift, Weak, FragileShaped through an arduous process of conchoidal fracture with a hammer-stone using lithic reduction, the ingenuity of the ancestors ensured that the land would always provide them with whatever they needed.
>6/Strange ChartIt appears to be a map or chart of some kind, from Imperial Langkasuk Of The Lotus And Cannon. You cannot make anything of it.
>7/Bird MaskSome seafarers have spoken of a strange plague borne by trading houses and merchants from foreign lands, but during the Dance Of Beasts the Isles of Galerne know only feasting, revelry, and the merriment of the masquerade.
>8/Fanged TalismanA curious braid of beads, carved animal fangs and tusks. You cannot make any use of it, except perhaps as a barbarous ornament.
>9/Seafarer SandglassA log line knotted at seven to eight fathoms and cast astern, counted to intervals of time passing through the narrow neck of this sandglass enables the helmsman of a vessel to estimate her speed. Despite holding little pretension of accuracy, the timekeeping of the sandglass is unaffected by the sway of a ship in motion upon the Sea, and has thus endured through the centuries for those who hold their word to their Promise.
>10/Red Lotusflower PerfumeThe pleasing fragrance of this elixir is near universal across all cultures, and no words need be spoken for its seductive scent to be understood. In Langkasuk the lotus flower is believed to represent the Triskelion, restoring purity to body, speech and mind, much as the lotusflower floats above the dark waters of desire. The Witches of Vourukasha are said to seek a rare Black Lotus that sickens those it touches.
>>5100331>2/Slave Scourge>3/Trumbash Knife-Axe>5/Flint Knife>6/Strange Chart>9/Seafarer Sandglass>10/Red Lotusflower Perfume
Location: Estate Evremonde, East GalerneThe Lady Evremonde is gazing upon the explorer Lemuel Bethencourt with utter fascination. She exclaims:O Lemuel, tell me again of your travels to Langkasuk! I so long to see those wild lands! Is it true that there are tribes that bind their skulls and elongate them into fantastical shapes? Is it true that their witches cavort with chimeras and dance amongst the beasts, binding the souls of their ships to demons? And is it true what they say of the Romance of Finisterrae?Lemuel replies, Why of course My Lady. I have seen as much with mine own eyes. Such twisted horrors that you cannot imagine! Under the auspices of the East Galernese Trading Company I have braved such terrors that would render the delicate constitution of a noble lady quite senseless, but to hear them even described in the slightest. And the Romance of Finisterrae, I have heard, is not a fiction at all. You see the reason it is so fortunate that Isle lies between ourselves and barbarous Langkasuk is because of these two brothers, one of whom...(choose only ONE)>(Interrupt Lemuel, solemnly): Lady Evremonde, there are no such things as monsters or horrors upon any of the lands upon the Sea. I have travelled far and wide and I know this to be the truth. (You are too afraid of the twisted horrors, or you feel they do not fit this setting)>(Mock Lemuel): Why look around you, Lemuel. The Beasts walk among us tonight! You have grown so enamoured of the customs of savage lands that you have forgotten our own festivities...>(Turn to Lemuel) I know of this legend already, Bethencourt. Tell us of a legend of Langkasuk instead.>(stay silent and listen to Lemuel describe the legend)>(Cough politely to attract the attention of Lady Evremonde) Perchance you would read my Fortune for later tonight, Lady Evremonde? (roll 1d78)
>>5098958>>5098955You possess:08 Pentacles, the sovereign currency of Galerne10 Seashells. They look pretty.The exchange rate is 1:1(Currently, you have no other items)
Location: The Dead LandUpon the parched dunes the Three Elders of Kaushambi have called for you to come alone, for when the challenge was raised all cowered in fear and no voice dared to answer except yours. They command you to seek the wisdom of the gentle guardian spirit Tola'ath who resides by the Tree Shrine of Dag Gadol, to quench the thirst of the Great Dark Sky that scorches all who gaze upon it to cinders. The Eyeless Elder warns you:Do not to tell what you see or hear to anyone. You must walk the dunes sky-clad, and touch only the earth and what has grown upon it: bone, flesh, stone and sacred wood.The Tongueless Elder does not speak.The Scarred Elder presents you with:Unsharpened Trumbash(as throwing knife only)Short-Range, Unbalanced(as axe)Cumbersome, Heavy, Blunt, Slow(You may ask any question you please. The Elders are not known for their patience or tolerance)>Stare into the parched dunes in grim silence (the Elders will leave you to the Parched Dunes and immediately depart)>(scavenge amongst the sand and pay no attention to the Elders)>Take the Unsharpened Trumbash>Wait... you just told me, do not touch the poison metal stuff. What is this knife-axe made of again?>Wait... did you say, "sky-clad"? The sun is really hot! Can I at least keep my loincloth?>If this Tola'ath Dag Gadol is so important, why do you not accompany me?>O Wise Elder, what is a Tree?>Snatch the Unsharpened Trumbash from the Elder's hand, and bash them. All three of them. You intend to do as you please amongst the parched dunes of the Dead Land.>(write in...)
Unsharpened Trumbash(as throwing knife only)Short-Range, Unbalanced(as axe)Cumbersome, Heavy, Blunt, Slow
Ah, I missed this, my sleep schedule got all fucked up. Catching up now.
>>5100495>>(stay silent and listen to Lemuel describe the legend)>>5100504>Take the Unsharpened Trumbash>Wait... did you say, "sky-clad"? What do you really mean?>If this Tola'ath Dag Gadol is so important, why do you not accompany me?
>>5100377>>5100377Wwwwwhhhhyyyyy anoooooonnnn!? This is the Tale Of The Conqueror and you don't take the Conqueror's Sword? So what if we lose to a random woman, it is too iconic of an item to pass up and for all we know our "demise" is falling in love or something.But in all seriousness, probably not bad picks.>>5100495>(stay silent and listen to Lemuel describe the legend)>>5100504>Take the Unsharpened Trumbash>Wait... you just told me, do not touch the poison metal stuff. What is this knife-axe made of again?>Wait... did you say, "sky-clad"? The sun is really hot! Can I at least keep my loincloth?
As your eager hand reaches out to grasp the blunted knife-axe, the Tongueless Elder suddenly steps forth and strikes you across the face with a knotted cord.(You suffer a glancing blow. There is no damage other than to your dignity, as the Dead Land has hardened your skin to pain and injury)The Tongueless Elder is about to lash you with his Scourge and strike you again, but the Scarred Elder stays his whip-bearing hand.The Eyeless Elder is furious. He shrieks:You Fool! That was a test! The Parched Dunes are filled with temptation. You must not touch the Cursed Iron! The Great Dark Sky scours the dying earth with its rust storms. Do not gaze upon it! Take only what is born from the earth: flesh, bone, stone, sacred wood! (you have infuriated the Eyeless Elder. He will not answer any more of your questions.)The Scarred Elder warns you:When you "come" before (you suppress a smirk) the gentle spirit of Tola'ath of the Sacred Tree Shrine Dag Gadol, you must do so unadorned. Tola'ath possesses such a peaceful, timid nature that if you are attired in armour or bearing any weapons she will sense the murderous intent within your soul and flee in fear. It is up to you to decide whether a loincloth may frighten her or not. The wisdom of the Elders would advise that you walk the desert sky-clad.The Scarred Elder continues,All know the tale of the ancient scriptures of how the sin of a mere humble woman, a temptress brought the downfall of mankind. The desert is truly filled with horrors, but some can be seen only by the heart and not the eyes. You must trust in the Tree and the sacred wood!The sacred wood is the shard of Irminsul, pillar of consciousness that spans the world of flesh, word and spirit, through which the river of thought and sense-impressions flows. The Trees were made from the Mating Of Bright Sky and Water, before the devouring she-demons of Vourukasha fouled the shores of Life with corpses of endless battle and slaughter, salting the barren earth so that nothing may live, and birthing the Great Dark Sky that scorches our land.
>O Wise Elders, I will take your warnings to heart and guard myself against the evil temptations of the Dead Land and its Parched Dunes. I will touch only flesh, bone, stone and sacred wood. I will speak of this task to no-one. I will walk the parched dunes Sky-Clad and I will not gaze upon the Great Dark Sky. (The Elders will be satisfied by this and leave you to your task)>Wait... so the earth is barren because "salt" from the Sky poisoned it? The Sky is like the Sea? Or the Dead Land is the Sea? Er... what... what is any of this about??>I have literally never heard so much nonsense in my life. The Dead Land has always been an unchanging desolation of burning sands. Also, a basic demographic model would suggest that if the death rate exceeds the fertility rate the subsistence economics of this land is unviable...>O Wise Elder, this tale of the corpse shore reminds me of another of your ancient legends, Nastrond. Could it be that the wrath of the Great Dark Sky, its terrible hunger for battle and slaughter, will bring Nastrond upon the Dead Land?>None of this makes any sense. What does make sense to you is rending the flesh of the insolent Elders that struck you with the knife-axe (commence slaughter, kill all the Elders)
>>5101135>O Wise Elder, this tale of the corpse shore reminds me of another of your ancient legends, Nastrond. Could it be that the wrath of the Great Dark Sky, its terrible hunger for battle and slaughter, will bring Nastrond upon the Dead Land?>O Wise Elders, I will take your warnings to heart and guard myself against the evil temptations of the Dead Land and its Parched Dunes. I will touch only flesh, bone, stone and sacred wood. I will speak of this task to no-one. I will walk the parched dunes Sky-Clad and I will not gaze upon the Great Dark Sky. (The Elders will be satisfied by this and leave you to your task)I need a clarification here. Are we the Privateer, Barbarian or someone from the legends?
Lady Evremonde is quite enraptured by the explorer Lemuel Bethancourt's tale. She leans toward him invitingly, as Lemuel begins:...so the two brothers, as you may know, were chasing each other to be the first to reach the Isle Of Finisterrae - yes that is right, the very same island that is our fortified and garrisoned defense against those devils, those witch-pirates the Vourukasha. But in Langkasuk I heard a different version of this tale. It speaks of how the two brothers were in fact enamoured of the same woman - a barbarous Langkasukan woman I might add - who was dying of some sickness as I understand it. And the two brothers were seeking an elixir of sorts, to revive her. You see the Langkasukans do not believe as we do in enterprise, liberation, mercantile ambition... They do not even believe in our Great Endeavour of The Conservation Of Capital, that has brought us such wealth, fortune and advancement against the traitorous Western Galernese, and their misguided breakaway merchant provinces. Imperial Langkasuk believes in some ridiculous nonsense about harmony beneath the Triskelion, and surrendering all desire... >(Cough very loudly, to get Lady Evremonde's attention) Ahem... My Lady, you promised me earlier to read my fortune... ( roll 1d78 against >>5095374 )>(Interrupt Lemuel: ) Are not the Langkasukans ruled by a Dowager Empress? And I hear the Vourukasha have witch-pirate captains. Why would they tell you as a man of East Galerne what they truly believe?>You recall that you saw a merchant from Langkasuk earlier in the estate, selling masks in preparation for the Dance of Beasts festivities later. Perhaps you could ask him what Langkasuk believes, instead of hearing Lemuel describe it?>Lemuel is an insufferable bore. You should retire to your chambers and prepare for the Dance Of Beasts ( collect item 10/Red Lotusflower Perfume >>5100346 )>(stay silent and let Lemuel enthrall Lady Evremonde further with his story...)>(something else...?)
>>5101134On one hand, they may not be full of shit considering the pirates are Witches, on the other hand I am immediately distrustful of the default narrative presented by these old bags.>>5101135Supporting >>5101147>>5101162Oh god, these are the precursors to the fucking financial dudes! Interesting that there is a two brothers tale over there too, I wonder if this woman who had the sickness was the start of this plague we've heard about.>You recall that you saw a merchant from Langkasuk earlier in the estate, selling masks in preparation for the Dance of Beasts festivities later. Perhaps you could ask him what Langkasuk believes, instead of hearing Lemuel describe it?
Far in the distance of the Parched Dunes you glimpse a great black cloud. A rust storm of some sort must be gathering soon...The Eyeless Elder is enraged. He commands the Tongueless Elder to strike you with the Scourge again.(You receive another glancing blow, but this one stings a little)The Eyeless Elder shrieks:Do not speak that word! Never, ever even think of it! And do not look at the sky or horizon! I saw what you just did! Keep you eyes upon the Parched Dunes! Think only of the Sacred Tree spirit Tola'ath of Dag Gadol! You do not have to understand what it means! >Well, that is it. The Elders have to die now. Seize the blunted knife-axe, and the Slave Scourge for that matter, and kill them all. >None of this makes any sense. How can the Eyeless Elder see you glimpsing at the sky if he has no eyes? Why do the Elders command you not to touch the cursed metal, when they themselves are holding the knife-axe before you? (Ask the Elders all this, and a lot of other questions)>(Ignore the Eyeless Elder and his ranting, dig around and scavenge in the Parched Sands for a bit)>(Complete your oath from earlier, whilst rubbing the stinging lash mark across your face painfully) O Wise Elders, I will take your warnings to heart and guard myself against the evil temptations of the Dead Land and its Parched Dunes. I will touch only flesh, bone, stone and sacred wood. I will speak of this task to no-one. I will walk the parched dunes Sky-Clad and I will not gaze upon the Great Dark Sky. (The Elders will be leave you to your task)
>>5101186So what are you thinking other anon? Should we stick to their advice, hoping it has some merit? Or should we go our own path, whether that be through being the generic Conan-esque dude or through becoming "corrupted" or what?I'll vote for now, but if you want to go the other path I'll follow your lead this time. Just because I think we ought to stick to one path right from the start.>Well, that is it. The Elders have to die now. Seize the blunted knife-axe, and the Slave Scourge for that matter, and kill them all.
>>5101162>>You recall that you saw a merchant from Langkasuk earlier in the estate, selling masks in preparation for the Dance of Beasts festivities later. Perhaps you could ask him what Langkasuk believes, instead of hearing Lemuel describe it?>>5101186>>(Complete your oath from earlier, whilst rubbing the stinging lash mark across your face painfully) O Wise Elders, I will take your warnings to heart and guard myself against the evil temptations of the Dead Land and its Parched Dunes. I will touch only flesh, bone, stone and sacred wood. I will speak of this task to no-one. I will walk the parched dunes Sky-Clad and I will not gaze upon the Great Dark Sky. (The Elders will be leave you to your task)Killing them is pointless. They don’t really have anything valuable.
(The Lady Evremonde is so enraptured with Lemuel's tale that you may choose to take her Tarot Deck >>5094955 by sleight of hand if you wish, though doing so may have consequences later)>Steal Lady Evremonde's Tarot DeckYou leave Lemuel Bethencourt to his tale and find the Langkasukan Merchant Yargai by the Banquet Hall. He is a corpulent man clothed in opulent gold and vermillion robes, and the bristles of a fierce black beard and moustache adorn his swarthy face. You have a feeling that Yargai dresses like this every day, not just for the masquerade festivities of the Dance Of Beasts. Yargai breathes in to flatten his rotund belly which wobbles alarmingly. You notice there is an unusual bulge in that area as if an object ia concealed behind it.When he sees you approach Yargai bellows:Ho - what is good for you, is good for me, my dear! And how might I delight myself by helping such an exquisite one as you...? Behold the glorious merchandise I bring from the exotic lands of Langkasuk! Every one a treasure! You will not regret it!(You may convert your holdings 1:1 to obtain 18 pentacles in total. If you do this, one unknown to you in another world may be deprived...)You may purchase the following items:>Langkasukan "Modern Art" (as the Strange Chart, >>5100341 With discount due to initial choice: 18 Pentacles)>Opulent Langkasukan Imperial Consort Outfit (18 Pentacles)>Fanged Talisman (18 Pentacles >>5100344 )>Langkasukan Tiger Mask(10 Pentacles)>Bird Mask (8 Pentacles >>5100342 )(choose one only)>Protest to Yargai: these prices.... they are ridiculous! You just looked at the money I had and demanded everything! (attempt to haggle)>Offer to pay with Seashells only (you can only afford either the Bird Mask or Tiger Mask)>Do not buy anything at first. Ask Yargai to tell you about Langkasuk and how he got here. You have a feeling Yargai may keep you here for some time telling you this.>Er... what is that thing you have, tucked behind the folds of... your robes there?
You begin to trudge through the burning sands. The blackened sun beats down upon your naked skin and sweat beads upon your brow. The sands waver before your eyes, forming striated, tremulous patterns that bewilder your mind with their abstraction. You have heard that the desolate sands can trick the senses, form patterns of hovering water, strange shimmering towers and pillars of floating rock... Yet you must avert your gaze from the Great Dark Sky, and steer yourself by the path you trace upon the parched sand alone.(You have gained trait: Thirst)(You have gained trait: Sunburnt. The flesh of those born in the Dead Land is resilient to suffering, and savage blows that would grievously wound the frail men of civilised lands merely inconvenience you. However if you walk beneath the scorching gaze of the Great Dark Sky for too long, this resilience will fade)There is an ominous ruin before you. It looks like a remnant of the Cities of the Men Of Chains. The Elders did not command it, but you feel you should not enter this forsaken place.There seem to be a trail of four footprints leading inwards. You can tell from the stride and gait of the imprints upon the sand that they are very recent. There is a wide, purposeful stride, as if that of a warrior. Two of the prints appear to be of women, and one is that of a youth or child.>Leave this ruin alone. You must find water. (Abandon this place, follow the traditions of the Elders, continue walking into the burning sands)>Look around for more signs of who is sheltering in the ruin (to do this, you must gaze at the Great Dark Sky)>Call out: Who is in there?>Call out: By Crom, I do not like this place...
>>5101235The Opulent Langkasukan Imperial Consort outfit resembles something like this:
>>5101235The Langkasukan Tiger Mask looks something like this: (pic related)
>>5101253The Ominous Ruin
>>5101235>Steal Lady Evremonde's Tarot Deck>Bird Mask (8 Pentacles)>Protest to Yargai: these prices.... they are ridiculous! You just looked at the money I had and demanded everything! (attempt to haggle)>>5101253>Leave this ruin alone. You must find water. (Abandon this place, follow the traditions of the Elders, continue walking into the burning sands)
>>5101645You have gained:Lady Evremonde's Tarot Deck(For some mysterious reason, the only card missing from this deck is the Knight Of Coins)As you attempt to haggle, the perverse Merchant Yargai cackles wickedly.Aha! - so you really are interested in this Galernese Bird Mask, my dear, and not the treasures of Langkasuk? A customer really interested in buying, hmmmm? You really want to buy this? Let me give you - my special price! Ahahaha! (Yargai raises the price of the Bird Mask to 18 pentacles. To buy this item now you must deplete all your wealth.)>What-how dare you?! That is not how you bargain...! Everything I heard about the evil merchants of Langkasuk, how you do not respect our mercantile ways must be true! (Leave immediately in fury. You forfeit the chance to speak to Yargai. You may return swiftly to Lady Evremonde and the explorer Lemuel Bethencourt's conversation, without missing much at all)>You possess Lady Evremonde's tarot deck. Attempt to offer a tarot reading for Yargai the Perverse Merchant, and see if he will accept a lowered price. (You are not trained in divination or magick, though you have seen Lady Evremonde perform a few readings with questionable accuracy. You are unsure how Yargai will react to this offer. Roll 1d78 against >>5095374 )>Reply: If you do not reveal what you are hiding under that fat belly of yours, I will call the guards...! (Attempt to intimidate Yargai.)>Buy the Bird Mask for 18 pentacles. You will have no wealth left. (Yargai will answer your questions about Langkasuk, and you may return to Lady Evremonde afterwards)
Rolled 30 (1d78)>>5101855>You possess Lady Evremonde's tarot deck. Attempt to offer a tarot reading for Yargai the Perverse Merchant, and see if he will accept a lowered price. (You are not trained in divination or magick, though you have seen Lady Evremonde perform a few readings with questionable accuracy. You are unsure how Yargai will react to this offer.
You resist the temptation to enter the ominous ruin. You trudge onwards into the burning sands, which begins to grit your eyes with flecks and sediment. The merciless blackened sun bakes at your flesh, whittles at your hardened endurance, but you dare not look up at it, for you must obey what The Elders taught you. Adhere to their taboos, rituals and rules, even if they are contradictory and make no sense... You were never a scholar, savant or sage. You did not understand the sophistry or guile of city dwellers such as those from Kaushambi. The creed of the Dead Land, the vast, unending parched dunes, makes man feel small and silent. The Dead Land and its burning sands produce only madmen and prophets, and if a god exists here, he has not stooped to become a man.(You have gained trait: Parched. You feel very, very thirsty.)(You have gained trait: Sun-scarred. Your skin is cracking under the burning gaze of the Great Dark Sky. The sloughing sand is weathering and withering you flesh. The sweat fills the fissures of your skin and dries to salt.)Ahead you can see water. Rippling, shimmering pools of it before your eyes. You hear a faraway cry from a strange bird, but you remember not to look at it, for to raise your head upwards would be to stare into the Great Dark Sky. You keep your eyes cast downwards, your head bent in submission to the Elders and their warning, looking only upon the withering, flaying contours of sand as they ripple in a distant wind.>The bird call must signify that water is close. Run towards it joyfully.>Continue walking ahead into the withering sands>Look around you to see what is ahead (to do this, you must gaze into the Great Dark Sky)>There could be a rust storm approaching from the rising wind. You cannot outrun it, and you must find shelter. Turn back and trek all the way to the ominous ruin.
>>5101871>The bird call must signify that water is close. Run towards it joyfully.
Sleeping now. Make good choices anons.
>>510185930 EIGHT of SWORDSYou draw the card from Lady Evremonde's stolen tarot deck carefully and Yargai is awestruck. You understand the Langkasukans are very superstitious and Yargai exclaims:You... you are a magician! Why did you not say so before?! Why, I have need of a magician! I need to work some powerful magic! Tell me, what does this card mean?>Reply hesitantly: Er... well there is this bird, um... it has some ribbon over its eyes... er, this means, er, um... oh also, there are some swords, er... (Admit to Yargai, you are not really a magician. You have not been trained in divination)>Reply convincingly: This card shows a blindfolded bird imprisoned in a cage of swords, lost in a desert of withering sand. One who is Eyeless cannot free himself from the prison and emptiness of his thoughts. If he does not break free he will die. (You believe you are indeed a magician. Yargai will be impressed, and may call upon you to perform more magic in the future)
>>5101871>>The bird call must signify that water is close. Run towards it joyfully.>>5101897>>Reply convincingly: This card shows a blindfolded bird imprisoned in a cage of swords, lost in a desert of withering sand. One who is Eyeless cannot free himself from the prison and emptiness of his thoughts. If he does not break free he will die. (You believe you are indeed a magician. Yargai will be impressed, and may call upon you to perform more magic in the future)bullshitting is fun but say that our magick requires much rest and preparation and cannot be called upon willy nilly so he doesn't get his hopes up
There is no water here. Only scorched, blackened rock, cracked and eroded by the sloughing sand that feels as if it is flaying your skin, one grain at a time. You feel so very thirsty... worse still, you appear to have walked in a giant circle. You can see the familiar entrance of the ominous ruin not too far from you. The footprints of the four you saw before - the man, women and child/youth - are long gone, swept away by the sand.The distant rust storm is stirring. It could descend and engulf you at any moment.>Take shelter in the ominous ruin. The Elders did not explicitly forbid it, though they would probably disapprove if they found out...? >You must resist temptation at all costs, no matter how small. Let the rust storm engulf you. You must adhere to the traditions and rites of the Elders, think only of the gentle spirit Tola'ath of the Sacred Tree Dag Gadol (You flinch a little from the memory of the Eyeless Elder shrieking, and the lash upon your face... walk on into the Parched Sands)
>>5101914>>You must resist temptation at all costs, no matter how small. Let the rust storm engulf you. You must adhere to the traditions and rites of the Elders, think only of the gentle spirit Tola'ath of the Sacred Tree Dag Gadol (You flinch a little from the memory of the Eyeless Elder shrieking, and the lash upon your face... walk on into the Parched Sands)
Yargai rubs his bristled black beard thoughtfully.Well, there seems to be some truth to your words, though I am not sure if you have drawn the fate of another... The image of this card reminds me a lot of my third wife, who had a face like a vulture... or was it my second concubine... yes, it was probably her. She had a face that looked a lot like this bird. And our nights spent together definitely made me feel like I was about to die in a desert! And... she always welcomed my arrival, by saying she wished she was blind, and did not have to look at me! It makes sense, I was going to see her soon... I will definitely break free of her! But I think there is something still lacking in your divination, hmm? Perhaps this ancient Langkasukan chart might help - Yargai lets out a sigh of contentment and happiness. He is very pleased with the magic you have performed.(Yargai offers you the Strange Chart for free, though he himself is no magician and does not understand what it means. He sells you the Galernese Bird Mask at the original cost of 8 Pentacles)You possess:10 SeashellsLady Evremonde's Tarot Deck (stolen, missing the Knight of Coins)Galernese Bird MaskStrange Chart>Return immediately to Lady Evremonde and the explorer Lemuel Bethencourt, to hear the rest of his tale>Stay and ask Yargai to tell you about Langkasuka>Ask Yargai, does he know the famous explorer of Langkasuk Lemuel Bethencourt is here?>Ask Yargai why he is interested in magic>Ask Yargai what he is hiding under the bulging folds of his gold and vermillion robes (you are unsure if Yargai trusts you enough yet, and how he may react to this)>Return to your chamber, to and examine the Strange Chart and prepare for the Dance Of Beasts masquerade later (you may collect the item: Red Lotusflower Perfume from your dressing table)
You walk on through the parched dunes, through the cresting and falling ridges of burning sand. There is a rider upon a steed which you have not seen before, accompanied by a warband of seven heavily armoured warriors. As they surround you, your eyes can see they are adorned in cursed iron, and carry the blades of the Men Of Chains.The rider is a woman. She addresses you:We hunt four traitors that have betrayed our Great Conqueror Mahiragula, Lord Of Vultures and Eater Of Carrion, Devourer Of The Great Dark Sky. Have you seen them?>Direct the warband towards the footprints you saw by the ominous ruin>Fight all of them, with your flint knife>Bargain with the woman - if you tell them what you know, can she lead you to water here?>Ask the woman to tell you more of this Great Conqueror Mahiragula>A strange bird mask has somehow appeared in your hand. Put on the bird mask, reply: I too serve the Vulture Lord! I will lead you to the traitors! Can you give me a weapon?
The armoured warband in their cursed iron are carrying a lot of weapons. The woman rider carries a long glaive. Some of the other weapons you see should you choose to join them include these:>Trumbash Knife-Axe(this version, not the blunted one >>5100336 )>Katar Punch-DaggerSwift, Armour-Piercing, Coup-de-grace, Surprise Attack, (Hidden ???)>Unusual Wooden Curved ClubSwift, Parry, (Hidden ???)This weapon is sheathed in sacred wood. You do not believe taking it would break your Oath to the Elders.
Katar Punch Dagger
Unusual Wooden Curved Club
>>5101968>Ask Yargai why he is interested in magic>Stay and ask Yargai to tell you about Langkasuka>>5101973>>A strange bird mask has somehow appeared in your hand. Put on the bird mask, reply: I too serve the Vulture Lord! I will lead you to the traitors! Can you give me a weapon?
(You are wearing: Galernese Bird Mask/Carrion Bird Mask Of The Dead Land)You have transgressed the Oath Of The Elders:- remain sky-cladSo long as you do not trespass further against the teaching of the Elders, the Oath Of The Dead Land remains intactYou possess stealth and trickery to rival any savage hunter of the Dead Land, but mummery and the performances of the city-dwellers does not come easily to you. In fact, you are not sure if you have ever even told a lie before now. You adorn yourself with the carrion bird mask and indicate the direction of the four traitors to the Great Conqueror.One amongst the Cursed Iron Warhost sneers at you to the Mounted Rider:He lies, Kyriarch. He does not even possess the brand of The Great Devourer. We waste time here as the Traitor Child flees. Spear this liar and offer his entrails to the Great Dark Sky.The mounted woman with the glaive, the Kyriarch, silences the warrior with a glance.Our Great Lord Mahiragula welcomes all who wish to fight in his name, and feed the carrion of their conquest to the Great Dark Sky. Your devotion to the Great Conqueror shall be rewarded. Know this: all that you must do to serve the Conqueror is to slay those who profane his name, and break all shrines that are not his own. Do this, and I, the Kyriarch Bektamun, will know of your deeds and reward you.She turns her steed to the direction of the ominous ruin and the warhost departs. As a parting gesture, the warriors cast their offering of weapons before you.(optional)You may take any of the following weapons:>Trumbash Knife-Axe>>5100336>Katar Punch-Dagger>>5102000>Unusual Wooden Curved Club>>5102004>take nothing at allA tremor shakes the dunes and you fall flat to the ground. First a tall protruding spire, then a vast mountain surfaces, like a monstrous fin of some form breaking through an avalanche of silt. You remember the tale of the Elders, of the she-demons who descended from the sky - could that have been one of their fabled vessels? Almost as quickly as it rises, the mountain vanishes again, as the shuddering sands receives and embraces it beneath the tremors.
The arid sand rises like smoke from the dunes and you feel as if you are being slowly baked within a vast furnace. All around you are the slipfaces of sand knolls and wind-faceted stone sculpted by abrasion and katabatic wind as if frozen into a barren sea of stone. There is no sound but the maddening patter of tumbling pebbles and rolling fragments of rock.You have gained trait: dehydrated. If you do not find water soon you will lose consciousness. You begin to see slithering transverse patterns in the sand, as if it had been raked by many limbs. Shattered stones lie across your path, and also heaps of bone. Your eye has known the carcass of every creature that walks the Dead Land, and you can see many of these bones are human. At places the sand and stone are scorched and fused into hardened black glass. And tangled within these bones are weapons, terrible weapons of cursed iron which unmake what you know and comprehend of the world. (By scavenging amongst the piles of bone and scorched glass, you may choose to take ONE of the following:)>Bone Claw(Fearsome, Swift, Parry, Breakable)>Jawbone Obsidian Knife(Concealed, Swift, Sharp, Fragile, Deathblow)(Gain this in addition to the Flint Knife)You avert your gaze from these cursed weapons and you see before you a ruin upon which there is a withered knot of what resembles sacred wood. Your vision darkens as a great shadow passes overhead, which you assume must be a cloud. If the sacred wood once grew here, there must be water somewhere...?>Walk to the ruin and the withered sacred wood growing upon it and examine it. Is this ruin all that remains of the gentle tree spirit Tola'ath of Dag Gadol?>Walk instead to the piles of ancient cursed iron weapons, and examine those instead>Raise your head and look around... is there water just up ahead? (Gaze into the Great Dark Sky)>You are filled with a terrible sense of foreboding. Grab the nearest cursed iron weapon that you can see, and immediately run towards any cover you can find. (You break the Oath Of The Dead Land)
Bone Claw(Fearsome, Swift, Parry, Breakable)
Jawbone Obsidian Knife(Concealed, Swift, Sharp, Fragile, Deathblow)
The withered remains of the sacred wood by the ruin perhaps looks like this (pic related)
Yargai looks at you with a guarded glance. He seems a little worried as if he has revealed too much, especially after his earlier excitement at discovering that you were a magician.Ah - ahem, well as you are such a powerful magician, you probably read my mind and know already, ahem, ahohoho. Hmmm. Well you see many of us in Langkasuk - but not all of us, how to explain this.... you see Langkasuk is actually a lot of different islands. Many, many different territories. Some of them do the head-binding, some of them do the feet-binding. It is not that different! I heard some women in Galerne are so desperate to become adventurers they bind... er their chests as it were, with strange corset things, stop having children and dress and behave like men. How ridiculous! Some of Langkasuk have only one wife, some have many wives, some like myself have many wives and wish we only had one. In Imperial Langkasuk Of The Lotus And Cannon, they think you are the barbarians! I hear their Gunpowder Monastery is puzzled by how you have developed cannons that are far... anyway, as I was saying, there are all sorts of islands that you may or may not be aware of, and the Vourukasha, they regrettably, well let us say the situation is similar to what has occurred between East Galerne and West Galerne. What do they call themselves now? The United Merchant Provinces? The Galdra Mercantile Union, the Occidental Hansea, the League of...>Thank Yargai for his explanation, return immediately to hear the end of the explorer Lemuel's story to Lady Evremonde>Ask Yargai if he has heard of Lemuel Bethencourt, the famous explorer of East Galerne>Ask Yargai what he thinks of the political situation between East Galerne and the breakaway Western Provinces, the Galdra Union> Insist you are not a barbarian. Tell Yargai you have travelled widely and believe the East Galernese are far superior, and that he would achieve far greater returns and profit if he allied with you. > Sympathise with Yargai. Say that you wish East Galerne would allow women to sail and captain ships openly, like the Vourukasha>You are beginning to suspect Yargai might have some ulterior motive being here tonight at the Dance Of Beasts. Isn't the Lord Regent arriving later for the masquerade? Take your leave of Yargai and report him to the guards.> You should return to your chamber and dressing room table to collect the Red Lotusflower Perfume ( >>5100346 ) You feel as if it might be needed soon, and you are not sure it is for the masquerade...
>>5102177>Unusual Wooden Curved Club>>5102180>>Walk to the ruin and the withered sacred wood growing upon it and examine it. Is this ruin all that remains of the gentle tree spirit Tola'ath of Dag Gadol?>>Jawbone Obsidian Knife>>5102253>> You should return to your chamber and dressing room table to collect the Red Lotusflower Perfume ( >>5100346 ) You feel as if it might be needed soon, and you are not sure it is for the masquerade...
As you approach the withered tree you can see it is unnatural. You are sure this cannot be the gentle spirit of Tola'ath Dag Gadol. The tree appears to be made of cursed metal... some horror has twisted it and poisoned it with iron! Nonetheless the tendrils of the iron tree are sunken deep beneath the earth, as if it was feeding or nurturing something...Nearby there is a pillar of similar cursed iron, with scorched glass all around it. You believe with your strength you could just about lift and carry it. Alone amongst the heaps of shattered and rusted weapons scattered all around, this pillar seems largely pristine and intact. A strange memory echoes to you, as if that of a prayer recited from the sliding stage scenes of a distant gallery or theatre of battle:
Pillar Of UrthekauLong-range, Devastating, Accurate, Incendiary, Blinding, Overheat, AttenuatingDirected energy fibre laser punch beam and collimator. Continuous wave mode operation of the diode head may result in thermal bloom. Beam distortion may also arise in smoke/dust filled environments.
>Strike the cursed tree with a weapon:>Flint knife>Jawbone Obsidian Knife>Perhaps the Sacred Wood will unmake this inexplicable horror? Strike the cursed tree as hard as you can with the Unusual Wooden Curved Club>Dig beneath the tree (this may take some time. You are already dehydrated.)>Perhaps lifting the cursed metal pillar will awaken the Iron Tree somehow? (Take the Pillar of Urthekau)>The Elders warned you to stay away from the cursed metal. You must hold onto the Oath, flee this place and look for water up ahead.
You have gained trait: InsaneThe Parched Dunes are driving you madYou possess traits: dehydrated, sun-scarredBy walking beneath the Great Dark Sky without shade or shelter, your resilience is reduced(Through the mysterious intervention of another)You have gained: Red Lotusflower Perfume / Elixirand you also possess:Flint KnifeJawbone Obsidian KnifeUnusual Wooden Curved Club
You hurry back to your chambers and retrieve your Red Lotusflower Perfume to prepare for the Dance of Beasts masquerade. You can hear servants preparing the Grand Ballroom and finalising the decorations and stage backdrops for the performances later. All of the performers and dancers are wearing masks, some harpists, lutists, knife-throwers and fire-breathing acrobats are even attired as Langkasukans or Vourukasha witch-pirates, wearing similar exotic Tiger masks to what Yargai offered to sell you earlier, as well as Lion, Serpent, Dragon, Monkey variants. The more traditional servants of Lady Evremonde's household are wearing Boar, Wolf, Goat, Stag and Lion masks - though the Lions are of East Galernese heraldic design.You can see an armoured captain of the guards who is complaining and interrupting the preparations - he clearly believes dressing as Vourukasha pirates is in poor taste with the arrival of the Lord Regent to open the festivities for tonight. You pass the salon where the explorer Lemuel was entertaining Lady Evremonde earlier. You catch this portion of their conversation:...and so that was how a mere woman brought about the demise of the Conqueror!The Lady Evremonde sobs a little:Ooohhh... that is such a tragic, tragic story! I shall weep myself to sleep tonight! I feel something of myself in this romantic tale! But I promised I would read your fortune for your new expedition to Langkasuk... a new trade route would be so very welcome... perhaps I can introduce you to the Lord Regent when he arrives? I am sure he would support your expedition, and if he does not I will scold him until he cannot do anything but relent! He will definitely grant you a Letter of Marque and Reprisal, to pass the naval blockade! Now where did I leave my tarot...(The Lady Evremonde departs and calls for her servants to help her to prepare for the Masquerade)>Use the Red Lotusflower Elixir now>Offer to read Lemuel's fortune for him instead of Lady Evremonde. Perhaps try and learn a little about the purpose of his expedition? (roll 1d78)>Show Lemuel the Strange Chart you obtained from Yargai. Do you think he would let you accompany him on his expedition?>What if you were to...help Lemuel "fall asleep" for a bit, disguise yourself as him... then during the Dance Of Beasts, when everyone dons their masks, accompany Lady Evremonde and receive the Letter Of Marque And Reprisal in his place?>Why not just end Lemuel permanently. There seem to be some ornamental swords hanging from the walls in this chamber...( >>5102004 )>Bide your time. Let Lemuel receive the Letter from the Lord Regent first, then decide what to do. Of course, nothing could possibly go wrong during the masquerade...>Completely ignore all this. Investigate what the guard captain is doing, as he argues with the acrobat performers dressed as Vourukasha pirates
Rolled 61 (1d78)>>5102313>>Perhaps the Sacred Wood will unmake this inexplicable horror? Strike the cursed tree as hard as you can with the Unusual Wooden Curved Club>>5102386>>Offer to read Lemuel's fortune for him instead of Lady Evremonde. Perhaps try and learn a little about the purpose of his expedition? (roll 1d78)>>Show Lemuel the Strange Chart you obtained from Yargai. Do you think he would let you accompany him on his expedition?
You have gained:ShamshirSwift, Parry, Dervish Slash, Strong (Slash, Multiple Target), Weak (Thrust, Single Target)Hunting sword worn horizontally on a baldric with the tip curved upwards, favoured by those on foot or mounted. It is difficult to thrust at a single target with its curved blade, as the weapon is best swung in wide sweeping arcs against multiple opponentsTo your increasing dismay you see the sacred wood scabbard shatter against the vile withered tree - you have been unknowingly carrying a weapon of cursed iron all this time! And yet no curse befalls you, and you are not stricken or scorched into a pillar of salt by the Great Dark Sky. As you raise and unbow your head for the first time upon the parched dunes, feeling the tendons and muscles of your neck untense, you can see that the tree that was before you appears merely withered, and not a horrifying cursed metal abomination. (You have broken the Curse Of The Elder Gods / Oath Of The Dead Land. You feel slightly reinvigorated)
The sands around you remain as a scattered battlefield of bone and rusted weapons. The wind has fallen still. Though you are dazed and shaken you rise and you are finally rewarded with the sight of water.(You have lost trait: Dehydrated.)(You have lost trait: Sun-scarred. You do not believe you will be turned to a pillar of salt if you gaze upon the Great Dark Sky.)(You remain Sunburnt.)>Wait, if you can touch the cursed metal... or rather, just pick up anything you want, maybe try and head back to the withered ruin and investigate that strange pillar (Head back and take the Pillar Of Urthekau)>Ignore the eldritch Pillar, Head back to the withered ruin and dig beneath it, you have the strength for this now>Proceed onwards. Where is the Tree Shrine of the gentle guardian spirit Tola'ath of Dag Gadol, or was this another lie?
As you draw the card from Lady Evremonde's deck, you feel yourself becoming more confident... perhaps there is some magick to be found within yourself after all...>>5102456>Rolled 61 (1d78)>>509537461 PAGE of PENTACLESThe court cards represent the stages of life, you realise. Pages are as children, Knights are as youths, Queens represent the mother, or the ruler of the inner self, and Kings are the Father, or the ruler of the outer world. You tell the Explorer Lemuel Bethencourt that the Page Of Pentacles represents the beginning of a great new commercial enterprise... a new trade route to Langkasuk perhaps? But only if he approaches the endeavour with the openess and eagerness of a child?Lemuel is looking at the deck curiously. He snorts,A woman on board a ship? Why, that would make us no different to those Vourukasha devils! What would a woman do on board a ship? And these tarot cards, they look a lot similar to those of Lady Evremonde, that went missing earlier... Let me just look through them and check, she had a missing card somewhere...>Run away. Right now. Find somewhere to hide and put on your Galernese Bird Mask. The Estate will be filled with masked guests soon and you will be forgotten.>Draw the Shamshir ( >>5102541 ) from one of the decorated wall mountings in this chamber, and slide the edge across Lemuel's throat. Lemuel will be defenceless against this surprise attack.>Draw the Shamshir and try and repeatedly strike Lemuel with the pommel to render him unconscious. You are not sure if you possess enough strength to do this in one blow.>(lie further) Oh, the Lady Evremonde lent it to me - she did promise you a reading earlier did she not? She sent me to provide it to you instead...>(something else...?)
>>5102177Mother fucker, it is you again Bektamun! And on the warrior-esque character again! Come to think of it, we had a mage versus mage show off last playthrough too.This is just like our Beggar-Knight playthrough.>>5102253This really is a prequel. Or is it a sequel...>>5102543>Ignore the eldritch Pillar, Head back to the withered ruin and dig beneath it, you have the strength for this nowThere must be water beneath the tree sustaining it.
>>5102559If you choose to run away, you will lose the stolen tarot deck. You do not know if Lemuel will alert the guards, or whether the guards will even respond given they are preparing for the arrival of the Lord Regent to the masquerade.
>>5102559>(lie further) Oh, the Lady Evremonde lent it to me - she did promise you a reading earlier did she not? She sent me to provide it to you instead...
I'm half tempted to attempt knocking him out to attempt the disguise plan, or just to get stronger, but I think the consequences would be too high. We may be able to afford a fight though, we are in an (isolated?) salon and the guard captain is distracted and presumably there is a lot of ambient noise from the crowd.
Beneath the ruin and the withered tree there is a crypt. As you descend you can see a golden glimmer, from the hilt of an ancient weapon gripped tightly within the skeletal hands of a dead conqueror, enthroned yet entombed beneath the vast battlefield above.>Prise the golden sword from the dead conqueror's skeletal grip>You must "get to the choppa" wait no. Say instead "By Crom... so this is the riddle of steel..." (take the sword)>It is just a sword. Leave it and take the Pillar Of Urthekau above.>Abandon the ruin and proceed onwards to the Sacred Tree Shrine?
Conqueror's SwordBulky, Heavy, Brutal, Cleave, Impale, Knockdown, Parry, Armour Crush, Fearsome, Lamentation Of Women, DoomedAn ancestral blade drawn from the starmetal altar through a riddle now forgotten to mankind. From the eastern realms of the old world arose one who claimed the decadent empire of Califerne. The prophesy foretold of a mighty warrior who strode through time to defeat a horror of the wilds, yet met their demise before an unknown, humble woman. Those that wield this terrible weapon cannot escape its doom.
>>5102573Needless to say, the Pillar of Urthekau is immensely heavy. To carry it requires nearly all your strength. You can as a barbarian attempt to take both, but there will likely be a consquence to being so encumbered.
When you attempt to lie to Lemuel he becomes very suspicious. You suspect Lady Evremonde promised him something else alongside the "tarot reading" after Lemuel's fanciful romantic tale so enchanted her, and which you did not manage to eavesdrop upon. If Lemuel did not intend to raise the alarm he is likely to do so now -Who are you exactly? Hmmm? How do you know Lady Evremonde? What are you doing here, on the night of the Lord Regent and his visit to the Dance Of Beasts masquerade? Eavesdropping upon conversations, pilfering our belongings? Are you even Highborn at all? Perhaps the Captain of the Guards should investigate this...(Lemuel is hostile towards you. You have lost the chance for a surprise attack)>Try and run away. Lemuel may pursue you, or raise the alarm and send others after you. >Draw the Shamshir from the decorative mount, fight him. Lemuel will fight back.>Draw the Shamshir and try to knock him out, without the element of surprise>Maybe it is time to try and see if you really do have magic? (roll 1d78 >>5095374 )
Rolled 22 (1d78)>>5102573>You must "get to the choppa" wait no. Say instead "By Crom... so this is the riddle of steel..." (take the sword)>>5102603>No, no, this really is my tarot deck, allow me to demonstrate and give you a reading with immediate effect Monsieur Lemuel.>>Maybe it is time to try and see if you really do have magic?
>>5102620Yes! The perfect card! The most powerful of them all! Always bet on black! wololooloololo!
>>5102620>>5102622With his hand upon his court sword, his mouth half agape in an accusatory cry, the Explorer Lemuel Bethencourt's outraged face suddenly slackens.(You have created and cast the rite:Fool's Masquerade. You are as yet untrained in magic and cannot fully shape it.For you this spell is spent and returned to the Sea. Another may find it in the future...)You have permanently turned Lemuel into a drooling idiot. He runs out into the vestibule of the Estate Evremonde, britches undone, buttocks flapping into the air, delightedly exclaiming:I am the Dowager Empress of Galerne! All shall kneel before me and explore my glorious jungle caves and orifices! Fall and pay tribute to the wondrous cavities of my Imperial posterior! Or else I will tax you with my very long rod of...The Captain of the Guard orders him to be arrested and silenced. This proves to be exceedingly difficult. As Lemuel is dragged away, dangling and wriggling, by the guards, with many onlookers gazing upon the curious spectacle of his exotic Imperial buttocks, you realise this has made the task of you obtaining a Letter of Marque and Reprisal far more difficult.>Now that the Captain of the Guard is distracted, speak to some of these dancers, knife throwers, fire-breathing acrobats... maybe start with the ones dressed as Vourukasha pirates?>Run to Yargai excitedly.... I did it! I performed real magic! I am going to be a powerful sorceress...>Try and persuade Lady Evremonde to speak to the Lord Regent on your behalf to authorise the Letter. This is likely to be near impossible. Maybe you could use/bargain some of this Red Lotus Flower perfume?>Follow the Captain of the guard surreptitiously and see what he does. What if this is not over yet...?>(some other plan...?)
>>5102723>Now that the Captain of the Guard is distracted, speak to some of these dancers, knife throwers, fire-breathing acrobats... maybe start with the ones dressed as Vourukasha pirates?Lets enlist some help.
>>5102727Wait, sorceress? Are we a woman? I suppose that makes the option for us to buy that dress or Lemuel dismissively telling us what use they would have for a woman to make more sense. Witch-Pirate Captain playthrough is a go!
When you approach the Tree Shrine, your tired and sand-scorched eyes see nothing exceptional at first. There remains as ever just dunes and stone and more burning sand. Yet then you see a mound of a different texture and colour. The mound sprouts branches, with rope-like sinews strung across its trunk like nets or a web. Along the side of the mound is a strange row of apertures, some shut, some closed, that resemble eyes and eyelids to you. This must be the Sacred Tree! You have never seen one before. The Sacred Tree is partially submerged and lying tilted in the sand, as if sleeping.The heaps of rusted weapons and shattered mounds of cursed iron, scorched glass do not end here. In fact you are beginning to wonder if the sand upon which your feet tread is nothing more than the ground dust of skulls, bones and ruins of ancient empires that have fallen here in battle. The desolation here is so peaceful, so tranquil... this truly must be the doing of the gentle nature of Tola'ath of Dag Gadol...
>Run inside and touch the tree shrine and the sacred wood>Wait... is this really what a tree looks like? Stand back and think for a moment.>Gaze upwards st the Great Dark Sky, remembering the dark shadow that passed over you earlier.>Was there some truth in what the Elders spoke, mixed in with the lies? Abandon all your weapons and set them aside to peacefully approach the gentle spirit, without frightening it...>You have a feeling you really need the Pillar of Urthekau. Run back and get it now.
>>5102733Weapon Trait: Lamentation of WomenWeapon Trait: DoomedA creeping sense of dread falls upon you as you contemplate the sword in your hand. Is the thread of your fate, whether you live or die, tied to the actions of another in some distant realm? The golden sword in your hand gives you no answer.
>>5102746>Run inside and touch the tree shrine and the sacred woodThis way we get cover without having to look at the sky.
>>5102727>>Now that the Captain of the Guard is distracted, speak to some of these dancers, knife throwers, fire-breathing acrobats... maybe start with the ones dressed as Vourukasha pirates?>>5102746>>Run inside and touch the tree shrine and the sacred wood
As you run towards the sacred tree shrine and its main "trunk" , the horror of pincers mouthparts and forcipules of body segments and appendages descends from the slithering sky, harrowing the sand in long carving funnels before you. The air around you begins to fill with choking sand, flecked grit - it makes you think of the distant rust storm earlier. You can see there is some form of rider - you are not sure exactly - astride the great worm, though you cannot reach him easily.(The battlefield around you is filled with weapons and the bones of the fallen and vanquished. Every weapon you encountered in the Dead Land can be salvaged here, though you must spend actions trying to reach whatever you do not carry.)You possess:> Conqueror Sword> Shamshir> Flint Knife> Jawbone Obsidian Knife> Red Lotus Flower ElixirYou can reach:> Bone Claw> Trumbash Knife-Axe> Katar Punch-Dagger(this takes more effort, it is very heavy and bulky)> Pillar Of UrthekauWait - you thought you had broken the Elder Curse? Why is a slithering centipede horror descending from the Great Dark Sky? Is this because you have come before the gentle Tola'ath of Dag Gadol, not sky-clad, wearing the carrion bird mask of Mahiragula (Galernese Bird Mask), and bearing the cursed iron weapons?>Fall to your knees weeping before Tola'ath of Dag Gadol: forgive me, gentle spirit of the sacred tree! I have broken the Oath Of The Dead Land! All along I hated the ways of the Elders - forgive me! (surrender all your items, kneel and weep piteously as the giant centipede-thing horror swallows you. Come on, you know you want to try this...)>Try and thrust a weapon into the side of the horror and climb it (write-in which one?) You fear it may be wrenched out of your hands, or the pincers and biting mouthparts may get to you first...>Keep running towards the sacred tree shrine. Maybe there is something within that could help you? But you cannot outrun the Great Dark Sky...>You intend to kill this slithering horror, and also destroy this pathetic broken shipwreck shrine (for you see it is a broken galleon now, with rows of hinged gunports you thought were eyes) that profanes Mahiragula's name. Draw your sword and bellow: Great Conqueror, witness me! I send this Carrion to you, to feed the Great Dark Sky!>(something else...?)
You approach the motley crew of masked knife throwers, sword dancers, fire-breathing acrobat performers. One in particular stands out to you, as she is dressed in a strangely familiar manner... ( >>5096840 )> Run up to her and blurt out excitedly in front of everyone - Are you really from Vourukasha? Are you here to secretly assassinate the Lord Regent? Is Yargai a spy working with you? Can I be a witch-pirate please? I can help?!> Tell her, I can try and persuade the Captain of the Guard to permit you to perform for the Lord Regent, dressed as Vourukasha (you feel this will be difficult)> Tell her, I can try and persuade Lady Evremonde to order the Captain of the Guards to let you perform (you are not sure if the Captain answers to her)> Ask her, what can I do to help?> (write in, some other plan...?)
>>5103078>Try and thrust your Conqueror's Sword into the side of the horror and climb it. You fear it may be wrenched out of your hands, or the pincers and biting mouthparts may get to you first...>If we fail to climb it or it throws it off, start throwing our knives at it and run to pick up the Trumbash Knife-Axe to throw at it.>>5103096> Tell her, I can try and persuade the Captain of the Guard to permit you to perform for the Lord Regent, dressed as Vourukasha (you feel this will be difficult)>But, perhaps that is not what you desire, how do you best feel I can help?
>>5103245Faintly in the back of your mind, you ponder the meaning of this Tola'ath - did it represent something in the ancient language of the peoples of the sands? As the great maggot dragon descends and darkens the heavens with its squirming mass of pincers and fanged mouthparts, you thrust the savage blade of the Conqueror into its armoured centipede-like flanks. You begin to rise as the Shadow of the Colossus (yes, this is exactly like that videogame) lifts you into the sky. The pincers tear at your hardened flesh, scoured by the biting sands - but you broke the Cursed Oath Of The Elders, and you know no fear.(You have gained the trait: What Is Best In Life?)(You are lightly wounded. The gnawing pincers which would tear the limbs off an ordinary human can only graze the hardened barbarian flesh of one who has survived The Dead Land.)The wind is rising with the thrashing of this centipede horror, the great Crimson Worm Tola'ath, Maggot Dragon of the Parched Dunes. You wonder if it is trying to raise a sand storm - a rust storm, for upon this vast lifeless battlefield of fallen bones, shattered blades and vanquished armies the sloughing flecks of rust and metal shards will shred flesh and blind you. >1/ Climb the armoured segments of the maggot dragon and try and kill the rider. Perhaps this will bring it down? Or will the maggot dragon become more enraged?>2/ Stab the maggot dragon where you are again and again. You have a feeling that the Conqueror's Sword is the only weapon you currently possess that can pierce its side. It may feel like killing a giant with a thin needle, and the fatigue may overwhelm you, but given enough time and determination it might work...>3/ If you bring the maggot dragon down it might crush you or worse still destroy the sacred tree shrine - alright, you know it is just a shipwreck now, but still, you cannot risk this unknown mysterious desert shrine being damaged as the maggot dragon plummets from the sky. Leap off and try to fire the Pillar of Urthekau at it before you are blinded by the rust storm.>4/ The Vulture Lord Mahiragula, Devourer Of The Great Dark Sky, cares not for a broken shipwreck shrine, and laughs in the face of this pathetic wriggling worm. Climb inside its maw, hack away from the inside and bathe in a fountain of its vile gore.>(Something else...? You must state only ONE action that is most important to you:- 1/ kill the rider steering it- 2/ bring the maggot dragon down, so you can fight it on the ground- 3/ ensure the shipwreck shrine is not damaged- 4/ wound the maggot dragon)
>>5103245The Bald Harlequin (>>5096840 ) glares at you, and for a moment you wonder if she does not speak your language. You sense she can see you are Lowborn, and an Outcast like her too, so she feels some affinity or kindred spirit towards you. Yet the peril of the situation, her mission and her surroundings prevent her from trusting you, a stranger she has never met before. You feel as if she is testing you with her silence, waiting for you to say something subversive, something shocking and scandalous, that will prove that you are truly worthy of allegiance to the witch-pirates of Vourukasha, and no longer loyal or subservient to the Highborn of Galerne.(Choose ONE only. If you say one of the below, you must say it out loud in front of everyone, otherwise the Bald Harlequin will not trust you, and believe you still loyal to Galerne.)> Vourukasha should attack the barbarians of Imperial Langkasuk! We should start a war! I met one of their revolting, fat and poorly dressed merchants today, with a stupid foreign name like Yargai or something - he tried to cheat me! And I hear there is some plague being spread by trade with them! > East Galerne's wars against the breakaway merchant provinces of West Galerne have ruined the Thalassarchy! The sovereign Exchequer and Treasury is near insolvency, and the Galernese currency the Pentacle is rendered worthless by endless debasement, borrowing in anticipation of perpetual refunding... we should all go back to bartering, or using Seashells to trade instead!> We must overthrow the Lord Regent! The Lord Regent is an evil, vile man! He is usurping control of Galerne from the Queen! I hear there are fishing villages where the poor wives can barely see their husbands, toiling for a pittance on the merciless seas... whilst the Highborn of Galerne hold decadent masquerades and banquets, like this one!> The Queen of Galerne is evil! We should start a revolution and guillotine all the Highborn! I hear the Queen of Galerne secretly helped protect some perverted, lecherous and deviant relative of hers... some Duke's relative, or Marquis... and the Queen has hidden all this and acts as if nothing happened!> Say anything you want (pick any of the above or write in) because you have a new plan: you intend to gain the trust of this Harlequin assassin, and once you uncover the full scope of her conspiracy, betray and deliver her and all her accomplices in chains to the Captain of the Guard. Perhaps the Lord Regent will be impressed by your fiendish cunning, reward you generously and grant you a Letter Of Marque afterwards?
>>5103254Obligatory Shadow Of The Colossus sand snake battle screenshot. I think this is from the ps4 remaster, I watched someone else originally complete it on ps2 and played it myself on ps3. One of the most monumental videogame encounters I have ever seen.
>>5103254>>1/ Climb the armoured segments of the maggot dragon and try and kill the rider. Perhaps this will bring it down? Or will the maggot dragon become more enraged?>>5103268>> East Galerne's wars against the breakaway merchant provinces of West Galerne have ruined the Thalassarchy! The sovereign Exchequer and Treasury is near insolvency, and the Galernese currency the Pentacle is rendered worthless by endless debasement, borrowing in anticipation of perpetual refunding... we should all go back to bartering, or using Seashells to trade instead!
As you wrench free the Conqueror Sword you are showered with the scalding ichor of the Maggot Dragon's blood. You watch as it hisses and blackens in contact with the air. The blood does not corrode the sword, but your flesh is spattered by the venom of the horrific creature, which writhes and thrashes more than ever. (You are wounded by the Maggot Dragon's venomous blood. Could it be poisonous?)You begin the ascent towards the Maggot Rider. You are forced to use the Conqueror Sword as a piton or climbing spike, as no other weapon can pierce its armoured side.The Maggot Rider sees your approach. It is unarmed except for the biting mandibles of its face. The Maggot Rider howls piteously and steers the enormous flying centipede form head-on towards the shipwreck shrine in a steep dive, as if daring you to kill it...> If you kill the Rider, it will crash the Maggot Dragon into the shipwreck shrine. Leap off at the last moment and slide down the mast into the shrine. You remember the opened and unopened gunports on the upturned side of the vessel: could there be cannons on this wrecked galleon?> This is exactly what the Rider wants you to do. You have no way of fighting this flying worm if it ascends into the sky and scours you with rust storms. You must kill the Maggot Rider at all costs (specify weapon used:> Shamshir> Flint Knife> Jawbone Obsidian KnifeYou may use the >Conqueror Sword Be warned: this is your only handhold on the monstrous creature)> Leap off and run for the Pillar Of Urthekau (you may take some damage as the Maggot Dragon has ascended)> Howl the name of the Vulture Lord Mahiragula in triumph, horrifically dismember and mutilate the defenceless Maggot Rider, maybe wear some of its limbs as a hat, anoint yourself in its burning blood as you prise open the fanged mouth mandibles of the flying worm.
The Harlequin is moving away, disinterested. She is turning to join a musical rehearsal for a play or sword-dance. You have the impression that as a Lowborn and Outcast she cares little for fiscal matters of sovereign expenditure, mercantile concerns or trade, given her impoverished upbringing. The crowds around you do not appear to be particularly scandalised, shocked or outraged either. There is one middle-aged gentleman who appears to be listening very intently to you. He has a rather austere bald bullet-shaped head, and an unusual tattoo under his eye. He is dressed in expensive and formal attire, though lacking in the flamboyance and extravagant embellishments of the other guests around the ball. You cannot place him - he could be a merchant or a magistrate, and beyond a plain walking-stick he does not appear to carry any weapons. This gentleman is moving to approach you through the gathering masked guests.> Attempt one last time to get the Harlequin's attention, shout loudly: We should overthrow the Lord Regent... AND the Queen! Put all of the Highborn on trial for oppressing the poor, as well as their decadent crimes against Galerne! We should support the breakaway Western merchant provinces, the Galdra Union, and make Galerne a republic!> Attempt one last time to get the Harlequin's attention, shout loudly: We should start a war against those greedy, revolting Langkasukan merchants! Especially that horrible fat one Yargai! Blockade them, make them pay for cheating us all the time! Issue Letters of Marque and Reprisal and permit the Galernese Navy to seize any Langkasukan ship - it will improve our sovereign finances...!> Offer the Harlequin your Strange Chart ( >>5100341 ) from Yargai, will this get her attention? (The gentleman watching you will see this exchange)> Maybe... run away now? Before someone actually hears you say something seditious. Perhaps head to a higher floor balcony, and observe the Lord Regent's arrival?> Approach the bullet-headed gentleman, and see why he is interested in you.(regarding pic related, no he is not an elf. Could not avoid any knife-eared versions of this picture sadly)
>>5103507>> Jawbone Obsidian Knife> Howl the name of the Vulture Lord Mahiragula in triumph, horrifically dismember and mutilate the defenceless Maggot Rider, maybe wear some of its limbs as a hat, anoint yourself in its burning blood as you prise open the fanged mouth mandibles of the flying worm.
>>5103507>> If you kill the Rider, it will crash the Maggot Dragon into the shipwreck shrine. Leap off at the last moment and slide down the mast into the shrine. You remember the opened and unopened gunports on the upturned side of the vessel: could there be cannons on this wrecked galleon?>>5103508>> Approach the bullet-headed gentleman, and see why he is interested in you.
>>5103512(You have lost: Jawbone Obsidian KnifeThe blade is corroded by the burning venomous blood as you dismember it)(You have gained: Maggot Rider EntrailsYou have no idea what purpose this serves. You could perhaps offer it to Mahiragula after a battle to honour The Devourer Of The Great Dark SkyYou may also keep it, and wear it as a hat)The Great Conqueror Mahiragula, Eater Of Carrion, hears you call out his name. As you tear apart the Maggot Rider, who is shrieking as it is shredded to glistening heaps of dissolving tubules and insectile palps by the black edge of your obsidian blade, you are showered in more of its acidic gore - yet the protection of the Great Conqueror ensures you remain unharmed.(You have gained trait: To Crush Your Enemies)(You have gained the trait: Servant Of The Devourer. You are unsure what this entails)As the Rider dies in agony the Maggot Dragon turns and veers sharply away from the shrine. You narrowly avoid being thrown off altogether, and cannot reverse your grip to climb into the Maggot Dragon's Maw. Seizing the hilt of the Conqueror Sword you leap off to slide down the mast of the Shipwreck Shrine.>>5103516The cannons on board this ship appear long rusted and broken apart. Yet there is one curious object lying upon the main deck - it appears to resemble a shortened, wooden mace of some sort: ( >>5100339 )> Grab the wooden mace and carefully study this curious artifact. What does it do?> Aim the wooden mace(?) at the maggot dragon as it approaches you and fire(??) it (???)> Take the wooden mace with you, but shelter deeper within the ship for the time being and wait for the Maggot Dragon's approach> Run onto the dunes, lift the Pillar Of Urthekau. ( >>5102312 ) The Maggot Dragon cannot hide from the reach of its burning fire.
Maggot Rider EntrailsA glistening mound of insectile membranes harvested from one that met a sorrowful end. Its surface is moist and warm to the touch, and wriggles comfortably when worn upon the head as a hat.
>>5103516The austere gentleman does not smile as you approach him. You can see he is wearing some sort of pin or ornament upon the cravat at his throat, though you cannot make out its symbol. There is something about him that makes you feel ill at ease.What a very astute observation you made there, the gentleman says. I am Nicolau Eimeric, a merchant. You may call me just Nicolau. But I am a merchant that trades in information. I tend to find that when there is balance between what people want and what they have to lose, things become very dull. I like to upset that balance, as it were. Perhaps we can go somewhere more secluded, and discuss what it is you desire?You try and squint to see the symbol on his cravat pin, but it is very hard to make it out by the candlelight.
The Merchant Nicolau encircles his arm uninvited about your waist, and gestures with his cane towards a darkened corridor nearby. He is leading you away from the main hall of gathered guests, where the Lord Regent will arrive to begin the festivities. Nicolau continues, You will find that there are many friends that can be made, with the right words in the right places. All you have to do is listen. Tell me, have you heard anything from your friends today?> Ugh, how dare he touch you? Push off his arm and try to escape. You need to find the Harlequin and convince her that you really, really do want to join Vourukasha somehow...> How flattering, finally someone who listens to what you want! Follow the Merchant Nicolau eagerly to the secluded alcove.> Tell Nicolau you think Yargai the Langkasukan merchant was hiding something. (You have no idea what it is)> Tell Nicolau you think there are real Vourukasha assassins interspersed amongst the knife throwers, sword-dancers, and other performers. (You have no proof)> Tell Nicolau you believe Lady Evremond is a witch. She has used foul sorcery to drive the noble explorer Lemuel Bethencourt to madness. > Show Nicolau the proof of the tarot deck.> Accuse Lady Evremond, but offer no proof> As you walk down the shadowed corridor, draw one of the ornamental swords and cut Nicolau down.> Court Sword (as Training Foil)>>5096740> Galernese Naval Sabre>>5096742> Crosshilt Silver Épée>>5096743> Ornamental Shamshir>>5102541
(In the distance, you can hear a hush descending upon the gathered guests as they await the arrival of the Lord Regent)
Rolled 8 (1d78)
>>5103642>>509537408 VIII: STRENGTH
Currently you are: Wounded, by the venomous blood of the Maggot DragonHaving invoked the name of the Mahiragula, Devourer Of The Great Dark Sky, you are immune to any further damage from the Maggot Dragon's corrosive ichor, so long as you continue to please Him with Slaughter.You possess traits:What Is Best In Life?To Crush Your Enemies...(...)...Lamentation Of Women (from Conqueror Sword)Doomed (from Conqueror Sword)Servant Of The DevourerBreaker Of The Cursed Oath Of The Elders / Oath Of The Dead LandYou possess the following items:> Red Lotus Flower Elixir> Galernese Bird Mask / Carrion Bird Mask Of The Dead Land (You are wearing this)> Maggot Rider Entrails (Also A Hat)and the weapons:> Conqueror Sword> Shamshir> Flint Knife(this weapon has been destroyed:)X Jawbone Obsidian Knife X From the shipyou can reach:> Mysterious Wooden Mace ??? ( >>5100339 )From the dunes and vast battlefield:> Bone Claw> Trumbash Knife-Axe> Katar Punch-Dagger(to reach this takes more effort, it is very heavy and bulky)> Pillar Of Urthekau>>5101134...not sure if it was decided whether you kept your loincloth or remained "sky-clad"
Sorry, was celebrating New Years. I'll catch up later.
>>5104332I hope you had fun, and are not too tired from the celebrations! Happy New Year!
>>5104631I too am a little exhausted and spent. Maybe a little recap like this >>5097992for both the barbarian and privateer in the meantime?
>>5104631Happy New Years.>>5103628I think the bullet head man may actually be either the lord regent or the treasurer and is pissed at us and wants to lead us somewhere to have us killed for knowing things we shouldn't or just saying seditious stuff. Or perhaps he genuinely wants to trade information and realises our value.The fact that he is dragging us essentially and is not offering anything in return for our info makes me think he is up to no good.> As you walk down the shadowed corridor, draw one of the ornamental swords and cut Nicolau down. Draw the Crosshilt Silver ÉpéeThough if I am outvoted, I'd prefer...> Ugh, how dare he touch you? Push off his arm and try to escape. You need to find the Harlequin and convince her that you really, really do want to join Vourukasha somehow...or this if people want to give him information.> Tell Nicolau you believe Lady Evremond is a witch. She has used foul sorcery to drive the noble explorer Lemuel Bethencourt to madness. > Show Nicolau the proof of the tarot deck. But do not let him take it from us, If he snatches it from our hands without our permission, immediately grab a sword and slash his throat.>>5103546> Take the wooden mace with you, but shelter deeper within the ship for the time being and wait for the Maggot Dragon's approachI think if we wear the intestines as a hat it will infect us with some hive-mind parasite or some shit like that. Using it as a sacrifice sounds good.
THE STORY SO FARThe BARBARIANcurrently hiding in the Shipwreck Shrine / (Sacred Tree Shrine, Dag Gadol), fighting a horrifying Maggot DragonIn the Parched Dunes of the Dead Land, Three Wise Elders Of Kaushambi called upon you to seek the wisdom of the gentle spirit Tola'ath of the Sacred Tree Shrine Dag Gadol, and swear the Oath Of The Dead Land.Despite the sinister appearance of the Eyeless, Tongueless and Scarred Elders, as well as their insane commands, which included warnings against looking at the sky, speaking, wearing any clothes, or touching any metal, you somehow decided to agree to this death march into the desolate wasteland. You nearly died of thirst and madness, but you broke the Elder Curse (The Oath Of The Dead Land) and discovered nothing bad happened to you at all. In fact, you felt a lot better afterwards.You discovered the Sacred Tree Shrine takes the form of a shipwreck abandoned in a vast desolate wilderness, surrounded by scorched sand that has blackened to glass, heaps of bones and shattered, rusted weapons.You discovered that Tola'ath takes the form of a Maggot Dragon, a horrifying flying centipede-like creature. You killed its rider and obtained an adorable hat from its remains.You have not discovered the meaning of Dag Gadol.Perhaps the Elders invented the Oath, as a way of breaking the spirit of the strongest, the most defiant, weakening them and driving them to madness to sacrifice themselves to the Maggot Dragon? But who would send your people to die in the barren desert for no reason?You encountered an ominous ruin, that resembled to you a remnant of the City of Chains. There were four sets of recent footprints leading within, that of a warrior, two women and a youth or child. When you returned to the ruin again after becoming lost and bewildered by a mirage, the footprints had gone.You encountered a mysterious rider, the Kyriarch Bektamun, and a cursed warband. One warband member wished to kill you. You did not learn their name.You learnt the Kyriarch's Warband were hunting for four that had betrayed their Great Conqueror, including a Traitor Child.You adorned yourself with a Carrion Bird Mask and revealed the location of what the Warband sought. In return the Kyriarch offered you a chance to serve their Great Conqueror, Mahiragula, Lord Of Vultures and Eater Of Carrion, Devourer Of The Great Dark Sky. The Kyriarch's warhost offered you weapons of cursed iron and departed in an immense, mountain-like vessel you had not seen before.You have learnt that invoking the name of the Devourer Of The Great Dark Sky brings you power and protection amidst the fury and cruel slaughter of battle. You have yet to learn its cost...
THE STORY SO FARThe PRIVATEERcurrently not even a pirate, maybe a witch(?) at the Dance Of Beasts Masquerade at the estate of Lady Evremonde, and being led down a darkened corridor by a mysterious manTo the surprise of the QM (and some others?), you decided to be a woman. In a simple instant, with no panic or effort at all, everything was reimagined.On the night of the Dance Of Beasts, Lady Evremonde is captivated by the famous explorer Lemuel Bethencourt and his tales of the legends of Galerne and Langkasuk. You heard him retell the tale of the two brothers trying to reach Finisterrae, but in his version of the story they were seeking some means to revive a Langkasukan woman. You did not listen to the rest, and stole Lady Evremonde's tarot deck whilst she was distracted.You know that Galerne is ruled by a Lord Regent and a Queen. Galerne is split into royalist East Galerne, and Western breakaway merchant provinces, ironically named United Merchant Provinces. In East Galerne, privateers are authorised by a Letter Of Marque and Reprisal. In East Galerne, women are not permitted to captain ships, whilst witch-captains are known to exist amongst Vourukasha.The Perverse Merchant Yargai told you that West Galerne itself seems far from united, comprising numerous factions, including one known as Galdra Union. Yargai initially tried to cheat you, but relented after you displayed your magic and delighted him with what he interpreted for himself as a warning against his ugly third wife or perhaps second concubine. Yargai told you Langkasuk consists of many separate islands of different cultures, not all of whom accept the rule of the Dowager Empress and Imperial Langkasuk Of The Lotus And Cannon. Yargai believes the Gunpowder Monastery of Langkasuk is investigating Galernese cannons. You noticed Yargai had something hidden under his large belly. You did not investigate this.
You learnt that the Explorer Lemuel wanted Lady Evremonde to help him obtain a Letter Of Marque and Reprisal, granting him authority for a new expedition to find another trade route to Langkasuk. Lady Evremonde promised to support the Explorer and persuade the Lord Regent into authorising his endeavour.You saw the Captain of the Guard remonstrating with performers dressed as Vourukasha pirates, as he believed this to be in bad taste given the Lord Regent was arriving to open the masquerade. You did not choose to meet the Guard Captain. Lady Evremonde knows her tarot is missing. Lemuel the explorer discovered you had stolen Lady Evremonde's tarot. You used magic to permanently turn him into a blathering idiot. Lemuel declared himself the "Empress Dowager" of Galerne, displayed his buttocks and invited guests to explore his "jungle caves." The Famous Explorer was arrested and dragged off by the Captain Of The Guard. You believed this matter to be concluded, and did not investigate further.The masquerade performers included knife throwers, sword-dancers and a familiar Vourukasha Harlequin. The Harlequin dared you to say something scandalous and shocking to prove you were not subservient to Galerne any more. You could not persuade her to trust you.However your astute remarks regarding the sovereign finances of Galerne attracted a mysterious merchant(?) named Nicolau, who made you feel ill at ease. He is leading you obligingly down a dark corridor, past walls decorated with swords, as the Lord Regent is about to arrive and open the Dance Of Beasts masquerade...
>>5104711No worries, I hope you have a chance to recover...You can read a synopsis here>>5104789>>5104797>>5104799I believe the Privateer is currently only carrying:Red Lotus Flower PerfumeTarot (stolen from Lady Evremonde)Galernese Bird MaskStrange Chart (gifted by Yargai, after you read his fortune)10 Seashells (as you may have guessed some special items are shared across both characters, as the situation demands)Something I should probably make clear is that during the Dance Of Beasts Masquerade, you can freely walk around Lady Evremonde's mansion carrying swords guns and weapons and no-one will question you, as they think it is part of your costume. Once the masquerade ends you cannot walk around with unconcealed weapons without attracting attention.The Barbarian's item summary is here>>5103703
>>5103628> Tell Nicolau you believe Lady Evremond is a witch. She has used foul sorcery to drive the noble explorer Lemuel Bethencourt to madness.>Hint that you saw her casting something with the Tarot Deck>Order him to release you so you can speak as equals. If he refuses, stabby stabby.>>5103546>> Take the wooden mace with you, but shelter deeper within the ship for the time being and wait for the Maggot Dragon's approach
>>5104797>To the surprise of the QM (and some others?), you decided to be a woman. In a simple instant, with no panic or effort at all, everything was reimagined.I was under the impression that we were a woman the whole time lol.
As you pass the billowing curtains of this darkened corridor you can feel the candlelight flickering and guttering, the shadows by the paintings and chandeliers lengthening with tenebrous malice. There is a crawling sensation of magic that is not your own. You are telling this Merchant(?) Nicolau your belief that Lady Evremonde is a witch, trying to lull him and distract him to reach for the silver rapier mounted on the wall display... Nicolau is nodding in soothing agreement:Yes, of course. How clever for you to notice. Yes indeed. This matter should be investigated thoroughly - Your hand seizes the hilt of the sword - but somehow it slips and slides along the edge of the blade as you draw it. A thin jagged wound seeps crimson between your fingers.(You have received a light wound, under very strange circumstances. It is however enough to distract you)How - (?) you were never this ungainly before? In fact you were always quite proud of your Instinct, speed and finesse with a blade - it has never failed you amongst Lowborn cutthroats, brigands and thieves ever at all. Nicolau is leading you onwards, continuing as if he has not even noticed. ( You can see the symbol on his cravat perhaps resembles pic related >>5073497 ) He is still continuing in his hypnotic tone of voice:You see, the Lord Regent is not coming to the Dance Of Beasts. What better means for people to unburden themselves of their true beliefs than when they are wearing masks. The dance is truly useful in that regard. We arrange and orchestrate this lavish masquerade every year, at great expense, and listen in with the utmost interest. Know you not what the Dance Of Beasts means? It is the chase of predator and prey. Weigh the feelings of what is being eaten, against the pleasure felt in the eating of it...You have had enough of being dragged along and you grasp the sword firmly this time and thrust its point towards his chest. To your dismay you see the piercing point turn from him, as if you had stabbed him with a blunted stick. Your riposte is met with a sudden length of steel:
High Magister Cane Sword(as cane)Concealed, Swift, Parry, Disarm, Elegant, Pommel Strike (Blunt), Breakable(as sword)Surprise Attack, Witch-breaker, Coup-de-grace, Strong: (Single Target, Pierce) Weak: (Multiple Target, Slash), Fragile
(You have been disarmed)(You have lost: Crosshilt Silver Épée)There is a quiet click as High Magister Nicolau has pulled back flint from frizzen on a small ivory pocket pistol. He is not aiming it at you directly, more so gesturing as if to show you he has it.> Scream for the Captain of the Guard: Save me! There is an armed man here! He is attacking me! Save me! Anyone?! Help!> Run away. The High Magister does not dare to let off a firearm with the guests gathered in the hall nearby. Is he bluffing, deceiving you? Perhaps the Lord Regent has arrived, and that is why he does not dare aim the firearm at you? Run away as fast as you can, hope you are not shot in the back, search Lemuel's chambers, an explorer must have some firearms around somewhere?> Fall to your knees and confess, sobbing piteously: It was really me, not Lady Evremonde! I stole her tarot deck, and bewitched the Explorer Lemuel Bethencourt! Please, spare me!> There is something strange about this situation. Why does the High Magister approach you in person, when he could have had you arrested by the Captain of the Guard? > Listen to what the High Magister has to say (he may just arrest you)> Offer him the Strange Chart perhaps, even though you do not know what it means?> Well, this is what you have been waiting for. Unleash all your magic at him. You may draw up to three cards, ie choose to roll either 1d78, 2d78 or 3d78 and the magic will manifest in increasing effect from subtle to demonic. Think 1 card=snuff a candle, 2 cards=start a fire, 3 cards=burn down the entire mansion. You need appropriate major arcana for something to happen. The probabilities of at least one major at 22/78 with replacement when drawn are 28%, 50%, 63% for one, two, three cards. Beware, magic always has a price! You are also unsure how the High Magister may respond to actually seeing you manifest your powers as a witch.
>>5104900>> There is something strange about this situation. Why does the High Magister approach you in person, when he could have had you arrested by the Captain of the Guard?>> Listen to what the High Magister has to say (he may just arrest you)If he wanted us dead or arrested he would've done so earlier so it's worth listening to what he has planned for us
(The Rite: Butcher's Eye is returned to the Sea)(The High Magister cast it on you)The High Magister seems to be pleased that you have realised that fighting him is futile. He sheathes his cane sword, pockets his pistol and beckons you into a nearby chamber with a large crackling fireplace. The High Magister gestures as he says -I would not invoke the rites so carelessly. We are always watching, listening. Earlier, for instance. Perhaps we can attribute the suddenly altered manner of the famous Explorer Lemuel Bethencourt to inebriation or some delirium, brought upon before the Dance Of Beasts. But everyone saw it. When he does not recover, there will be questions. Who should I offer to explain those questions?The High Magister casts his tattooed eye over at you.Now there are some who flaunt their power openly. These Vourukasha, for instance. We never discovered their trick of how they bind their witch-captains to their ships and vessels. No matter, they die as easily all the same. You see they have a ritual. They are not just bound to the ships, they become them. They are the ships, wherever they walk. They possess the ships with their thoughts. Imagine it! A single woman can command, steer, navigate, an entire galleon. They need only think it, and the cannons fire. And how do they use it? They waste it raiding vessels upon the Sea. This power cannot be theirs to control!
For the first time you can see the High Magister is becoming a little impassioned. There is a small amount of spittle flecked upon his lips, as if he is salivating at the very thought of seizing this power.They have an island, somewhere. Some sort of shrine. Now as I understand it, the ritual can be easily performed anywhere. But it is hard to control. Away from this secret ritual island of theirs - we do not even know the name, believe me, I have tried personally to extract it - if the ritual is performed, it shortens the life of the witch-pirates. They sicken and die. We must seize this island and experiment with it. The Galernese Navy will become invincible! Our problems with war expenditure will be resolved! Every one of our seafarers able to steer their own ship of the line with a mere thought! Imagine it!> Give the Strange Chart to the High Magister: oh look what I have here...> Ask the High Magister about the Galernese legend: is this what the two brothers trying to save the sickened woman is about? Was she the first of the witch-pirates? Is Finisterrae the ritual island?> Tell the High Magister: I think there is at least one of the witch-pirates (The Harlequin) who has infiltrated the sword-dancers and knife-throwers amongst us here, right now. We should arrest her and interrogate her to see if she knows the name of this ritual island.> Also, I got this chart from a horrible fat merchant Yargai. Arrest him too.> (drunk with power) can we also arrest Lady Evremonde. Just blame her for the witchcraft. I just do not like her.> Ask the High Magister: And what do you intend to do with this power once you have it? Wage war against Langkasuk, or crush West Galerne and its United Provinces?> Accuse the High Magister: So you have been arresting and imprisoning Vourukasha to torture this secret out of them?! That is evil! I will have no part in this!> Nod along and agree with whatever the High Magister rants about in his spittle-inflected monologue. Afterwards you need to run to the Masquerade and warn the Harlequin and her friends that they are about to be arrested.
>>5104959> Ask the value of such information. What price is he willing to pay for it?> Ask the High Magister about the Galernese legend: is this what the two brothers trying to save the sickened woman is about? Was she the first of the witch-pirates? Is Finisterrae the ritual island?> Ask the High Magister: And what do you intend to do with this power once you have it? Wage war against Langkasuk, or crush West Galerne and its United Provinces?
Still not quite rested from New Years, but I'll be around in a few hours.
>>5105480(No worries - I hope you manage to get some rest!)
You can see the armoured morion helm of guards assembling outside the entrance to this chamber. They appear to be awaiting some command from the High Magister, and are glancing expectantly at you and your conversation.When you mention the Galernese legend, The High Magister gestures dismissively:I see you have been listening to that Explorer Lemuel Bethencourt and his preposterous tales. Myths of a Sacred Tree Shrine, nurtured by a gentle spirit that guards some gate or passageway to a mystical otherworld of the Langkasukans. The Unbidden Court has examined all such Euhemerism and deemed them heresy. There are Langkasukan merchants who even believe that they possess maps and charts of this mystical otherworld. Never trust Langkasukans! Everything they sell is fake, or poorly copied imitations of our superior East Galernese manufacture! And their belief in the Triskelion, these legends of a river or sea of consciousness flowing through flesh, words, spirit. Heresy! No, the only way to discover the ritual island is to find one of these witch-pirates and question them. I tend to find that a visit to the Couvent des Madelonnettes makes them very talkative -> Wait, the Madelonnettes is a real place? I know where some of these witch-pirates are hiding! Lets arrest them and go there now! (Betray the Harlequin, become an acolyte of the Unbidden Court. You must swear allegiance to this path before the High Magister will bargain with you.)> Lets also arrest the revolting Fat Merchant Yargai! Langkasukans can never be trusted!> (evil cackling laughter) I like this! Why not also arrest Lady Evremonde too! She has a tarot deck, she must also be a witch!(only if you swear allegiance to the Unbidden Court, choose ONE only:)> Ask the High Magister for a Letter Of Marque And Reprisal (you do not know if he can grant this)> Ask for a weapon> Ask for some magic> Insist upon asking the High Magister further: but do you not think the Triskelion makes sense? If the ritual involves possessing a ship and controlling it with your mind, must there not be some connection to their belief in the river or sea of consciousness that flows through flesh, words and mind?> Reveal the Strange Chart to the High Magister> Your conversation here is wasting time. The guards outside are probably assembling to arrest the Harlequin right now. Nod along and agree to whatever the High Magister wants, you must leave this chamber immediately and warn the Harlequin and her Vourukasha friends. (You do not swear allegiance to the Unbidden Court. The High Magister will remain suspicious of you)( From the corner of your eye, you can see a curious object displayed in this chamber >>5100339 )> Cry out defiantly: I will never join your evil Regime Of Torture! (Seize the Galernese Hand Bombard, fire it at the guards/Magister/partially yourself as you cannot really aim it, commence combat)
The magic granted would be a single rite and the ability to memorise the tarot deck (you can either discard it, sell it etc) so that even if the tarot is taken away or lost you can still draw upon the deck in the future.The weapon would probably be this:(In case it is not obvious, the Witch-breaker weapon trait allows you to absorb some magical attacks and also injure and damage unnatural magical entities)
War FanConcealed, Very Swift, Surprise Attack, Sharp, Deathblow, Witch-breaker, Parry, Shield, Strong:(Thrust, Slash), Weak:(Blunt, Crush), Short Reach, ElegantFolding fan with hardened black iron and gold spokes and a hidden inner cutting edge. Best unfolded and deployed in a single attacking motion, as once the element of surprise is lost, the reach of the weapon is poor. In Imperial Langkasuk a black iron war fan is said to have shielded a general from poison darts, throwing knives and the stabbing thrust of a demon war spear. Folding fans are also a popular summer ornament amongst the noblewomen of Galerne, as well as actual warmongers.
>>5104812> Take the wooden mace with you, but shelter deeper within the ship for the time being and wait for the Maggot Dragon's approachEven to the callused hands of a Barbarian of the Dead Land, there is something about this wooden mace(?) ( >>5100339 ) that seems like it is missing. The weapon has a surprising weight to it, which suggests to you that it is already armed(??) and loaded (???) Yet the mechanism appears broken somehow.> If you know what item you need to repair the Galernese Hand Cannon, write in now... (your items are listed here >>5103703 )Otherwise:> Run outside and fight the Maggot Dragon upon the parched sands and rusted weapons when it descends> Run out and lift the Pillar Of Urthekau> Run deeper inside the Shipwreck Shrine. Perhaps run below deck and see if there is even one cannon still in working condition? (You risk the Maggot Dragon tearing the Shrine apart as it tries to force you to come out)
>>5104898Motherfucker, he's a fuckin' Preceptor, under no circumstances can we reveal ourselves to be a witch!>>5105782> Wait, the Madelonnettes is a real place? I know where some of these witch-pirates are hiding! Lets arrest them and go there now! (Betray the Harlequin, become an acolyte of the Unbidden Court. You must swear allegiance to this path before the High Magister will bargain with you.)> Lets also arrest the revolting Fat Merchant Yargai! Langkasukans can never be trusted!> (evil cackling laughter) I like this! Why not also arrest Lady Evremonde too! She has a tarot deck, she must also be a witch!> Ask the High Magister for a Letter Of Marque And Reprisal (you do not know if he can grant this)He literally just called the chart heresy and seems close minded, if he believes they all sell fakes then there is no point as he will not somehow be able to recognize the genuine article.If he is hesitant to arrest either the lady or Yargai, then say he is peddling some of those heretical charts and if he still doesn't want to arrest either then we can say we stole evidence from both of them and then show him the tarot and the chart, but I'd personally rather keep our tarot a secret for ourselves. The lady is just a bonus, I'd rather not burn our magick for clout.The letter was our objective from the beginning. The choice between magick or the witch-breaker trait is tempting but as an "ending" getting either seems less ideal than the letter, as we seem to desire to be a sea-fairing terror. The weapon or magick would probably be better for the final confrontation if there is one in this scenario, but then we may not get our desired goal.The Witch-Captain path is more appealing to me, but frankly this seems like an easy in with the Unbidden court. The problem is that women don't seem to be able to captain vessels in Galernerne, but if the captain of the guard plus guards is gathering outside the chamber we are in, then they are probably waiting for the Magister's order to gank us if we reveal ourselves to have committed any heresies, so he is in the position of power and can coerce us.If he cannot grant the letter, then ask for magick. I hesitate to ask for magick as I would think it'd be a trap as it could be seen as a heresy, but considering you are giving Out-Of-Character knowledge of what we'd get, then I assume it is a safe option.>>5105898>Flint knifeIt is probably lacking the "Flint" part of the flintlock.
The PRIVATEER has ascended toACOLYTE Of The UNBIDDEN COURT- Order of Highborn merchant-sorcerers, who renounced the balance between the Black Span Of Desire, and the Red Lord Of Ruin. Their symbol is a Red Crown Of Thorns. - The Unbidden Court adheres to secrecy, ruthlessness and betrayal. It is believed that even whispering their name will invite their attention. - The Unbidden Court does not acknowledge or protect its own.
(You asked for magick)You have memorised the tarot, and no longer require a tarot deck itself to call upon the Ancient Rites.You may roll 1d78, 2d78 or 3d78 whenever you wish to attempt to draw Major Arcana, though the severity of any consequence is amplified if you draw more cards. Be warned: magick always has a price.
There is a prickling sensation on your hand, almost unnoticeable. A very slight discolouration, as if a vein had burst, into a small blossom of darkened, red thorns.The High Magister is delicately dabbing a woven, commemorative handkerchief at the corner of his previously spittle-flecked mouth as he patiently listens to you outline your elaborate plans for a Reign Of Imprisonment, Torture and Terror. The Magister responds,We cannot arrest anyone in front of the gathered Highborn guests of the Dance Of Beasts. To do so would be to acknowledge that the Vourukasha have infiltrated into the very heart of Galerne, and all would witness it. It would bolster the morale of every dissident, renegade and traitor across the Thalassarchy. I suggest you befriend this Harlequin, find out who amongst the rabble of sword-dancers and knife-throwers is their leader. After the masquerade ends, you may call upon Balthasar, Captain Of The Guard, to set your plans in motion.As he rises to depart, the High Magister warns:I do not know you. We have never met. The Red Lord knows treachery that is not His own.The fireplace flares at this omen, but when you turn to look again the Magister and the guards are gone.> Put on the Bird Mask, rejoin the Masquerade, find and gain the trust of the Vourukasha Harlequin as quickly as possible> You need some weapons, these Vourukasha are dangerous. Search the mansion for some firearms, preferably something concealable. This may take some time.(You may of course just take the >Galernese Hand Bombardon display here - it has been mysteriously loaded and repaired somehow. The Hand Bombard is a destructive weapon mainly designed for breaching the hulls of ships. Once the masquerade ends, guards will question anyone visibly armed)> The High Magister cannot tell you what to do. Find Balthasar, the Captain Of The Guard, and order him to arrest everyone you wanted, right now. The Reign Of Terror begins tonight!> The High Magister did not mention any prospect of reward for this. He did not acknowledge your request for a Letter of Marque and Reprisal. Has the High Magister been lying to you? Find someone to investigate further (this will take up a lengthy duration of time. You must assess which ONE of these is most likely to know and tell you)> Yargai, the Perverse Merchant> Lady Evremonde> Balthasar, Captain Of The Guard> The Vourukasha Harlequin
>>5105995Hmm, the Lady may be able to tell us who is legally allowed to dispense Letters of Marque and Reprisal, Balthasar is probably the only one familiar with the Magister, Yargai probably isn't in the right social circles but he probably just knows a lot in general, and the Harlequin has every reason to spin the Magister in a bad light. Besides, if he hopes to keep us happy then he'll eventually do what is in his power to get that letter for us, and if he thinks in a "everyone has to earn their own place" sort of way then pursuing the knowledge of whether he has any intention of getting our letter is pointless, besides, he fulfilled our other request for magick.Anyways...we shouldn't go unarmed.>Quickly take the Bombard, then circle back towards where we saw those swords and take one, preferably the Épée. Then head back to the Masquerade and find the Harlequin. Remember to put on our bird mask and bind our wound with some fabric from our outfit, or any miscellaneous clothe we have on our person.
(You have gained:- Galernese Hand Bombard, repaired and loaded- Crosshilt Silver ÉpéeNone of these weapons are concealable. After the masquerade ends you may be questioned by guards when they see you)You are still lightly wounded, but by binding your hand you retain the swift trait of your sword)You can hear the applause and approbation of the masked crowds when you return to the Dance Of Beasts, as you have just missed a re-enactment of a daring Vourukasha pirate battle by the troupe of sword-dancers and fire-breathing acrobats. You can see the stage has an elaborate and realistically depicted scene of a ship in a storm. You are trying to find the Harlequin but the heat and noise of the crowd is nearly overwhelming. Further back you can see that a Highborn noble lady has already fainted, having been overcome by the sweltering cacophony and press of excited guests, and you yourself have to manoeuvre around an elderly gentleman in a gold lion mask who seems to keep getting in your way. As you squeeze through the last crush and throng of the audience, you can overhear the following hushed chatter from backstage -... but he is not here! That merchant lied to us, the information he provided was utterly false! This might even be a trap to make us reveal our hand. Saertu of the Moon Arisen will be so angry! ...We could attempt another target. What about the Captain Of The Guard? We cannot go back to Saertu empty-handed... ....These Highborn all deserve to die. They do not hesitate to do the same to us... Look at this luxurious palace, and everything they have...... I wish that Bald Harlequin would put on a mask! She can be recognised so easily, with the tattoos and baldness! Who ever heard of a bald assassin with markings on their head, going around stealing people's clothes?! She is literally the worst stealth assassin ever! ...But how to get him on his own? He is the Captain, he is always surrounded by guards, and he will not come to the stage. We should just give up and go back to the ship...
> Push your way through the crowd back to Balthasar, Captain Of the Guard, tell him to arrest all the Vourukasha performers immediately. (Disobey the High Magister's Orders)> Order Balthasar to arrest Yargai> Order Balthasar to arrest Lady Evremonde> Find Yargai The Perverse Merchant. Confront him and ask why he wanted the Lord Regent dead> Draw your weapon and force the answers out of him at swordpoint> Find Lady Evremonde and ask her why the Lord Regent is not here tonight> Tell her that you found her tarot deck> Tell her Lemuel has been arrested> Draw your weapon and force the answers out of her at swordpoint> Warn the Vourukasha that the High Magister is hunting them (betray the High Magister and the Unbidden Court)> Show the Vourukasha the Strange Chart> Try to stay hidden and follow these Vourukasha back to where Saertu Moon-Arisen may be hiding. (Note: You may have to follow them away from the Dance Of Beasts, and you are not carrying any concealable weapons.)> Confront these Vourukasha performers yourself, right now. You think you heard at least three voices backstage, but you have a literal hand cannon, a sword and magick now... (commence fight)> Fire the Galernese Hand Bombard at the stage, depicting a ship in a storm.
>>5105926(You have repaired the Mysterious Wooden Club / Galernese Hand Bombard)The Maggot Dragon wheels around in the air and dives as it rakes a hundred pincers into the shipwreck. There is the screeching rasp of splintering timbers. It is not quite intelligent enough to ascertain precisely where you have gone - you are not sure it even has eyes. It appears intent on destroying the last place where it believes you took shelter.(The Upper Deck of the Shipwreck Shrine is damaged)For some reason you cannot work out the purpose of this mysterious wooden mace or club. A moment ago the mechanism seemed so clear and obvious to you, it was so easy to repair. Is it like a throwing axe? Do you just throw it? But which end is the sharp end? The hollow metal one or the knobbly wooden one? It is so confusing...> Drink the Red Lotus Flower Elixir> Just stare really hard at the wooden club. What is it???> Fight the Maggot Dragon upon the parched dunes, in the open> Lift the Pillar of Urthekau> Gaze grimly at the Conqueror's Sword as you contemplate its doom
>>5106113lmao, nice Hitman reference.>>5106115> Show the Vourukasha the Strange Chart but do not betray the Unbidden Court. Plead to them that you want to be useful, that Galernese society is incredibly restrictive for a Lowborn woman such as ourselves, that we hope to one day captain our own ship and we'll do anything to help them if only they will show a measure of trust and give a glimpse of a future reward for our help. Tell them we can perform magick and can be useful.>Wrap our Mark that identifies us with the Unbidden Court and the Red Lord of Ruin with some clothe if we didn't already when binding our wound.>If that "gentleman" in the gold lion mask gets in our way again then say "Oh, I was looking for you Harley Quinn - what I did there? - listen, I wanna kill some nobles, let me help you!" (this is just a guess that that is who the baldy is disguised as)
>>5106160Actually I was gonna use the elixir, but going back to reread it, it seems like a cure-all healing potion. I wanna save it for the Privateer or for if we discover the negative effects for invoking that god's name or for dealing with any number of wounds or curses or afflictions we may suffer after the battle with the dragon and the aftermath of dealing with the shrine or whatever comes after. We also seem to have "felt better" after breaking the oath, so apparently we aren't thirsty anymore, so I don't think we need to use it here.If I remember, we are immune to further acid, so fighting in the open may actually be a okay idea.> Fight the Maggot Dragon upon the parched dunes, in the open
>>5106171see what I did there?*whoops, don't know how that word got cut off. I am tired though.
>>5106160> Fight the Maggot Dragon upon the parched dunes, in the open> Lift the Pillar of Urthekau
>>5106115>>5106171Actually wait, keep the thing about hiding our mark and what we do if we encounter the gold lion mask person who keeps pestering us, but...>Go find Yargai and offer to trade him the chart and the Bombard (a genuine article) but in exchange he has to tell us absolutely everything he knows about the witch pirates, the bald assassin, what they are doing here tonight, why he wanted to kill the lord-regent, what he is hiding behind his fat belly, and fuck throw every little scrap of relevant info he can think of that he can tell in a timely manner. We'll even throw in a genuine fortune telling for him.I'm tempted to go to the Lady Evermonde if we have time to find out why the Lord-Regent isn't here in exchange for her tarot deck, but this seems like the least pressing issue.Though, if you already started writing for my first write-in, then feel free to go with that if you don't feel like re-writing. Sorry for switching so much.
>>5106200Wait, scratch the bit about the chart, he was selling just such a chart. Maybe consume potion as the Privateer prior to talking to Yargai as it has a "seductive scent" I dunno.
Oh, wait, Yargai implied the chart would be understood by a magician, fuck, maybe we should've turned it in to the magister after all.Still, he should want that bombard or perhaps the elixir.Sorry for being so flip floppy, just rereading some of the old posts I read through quickly through the hectic holidays.
>>5106200I can agree with offering the bombard and using the elixir to extract every bit of useful knowledge from Yargan.
>>5106252*Perfume not elixir dammit
>>5106177>>5106187> Fight the Maggot Dragon upon the parched dunes, in the open> Lift the Pillar of UrthekauThe eldritch pillar is enormous and heavy. Straining every sinew and tendon of your being you set it upright and await the descent of the Maggot Dragon. You wonder if this Pillar was wielded by a giant or colossus of the Elder Age, for the weapon could not possibly be held by a fist of human proportions. The Pillar appears to consist of a long hollow core, similar to a ballista of some form, but wrought in cursed iron instead of sacred wood. There is no bolt or missile contained within. Instead there is a long cylinder of spiralling rings and hardened glass.As the screaming monstrosity hurtles towards you from the blackened sky, the whipcrack of its barbed tail lashes out -(choose ONE only)> try to parry with the Shamshir> try to parry with the Conqueror's Sword> endure the damageYou are reeling from the Maggot Dragon's assault, but a column of unnatural light, brighter than skyfire, brighter than the hottest furnace upon which you have ever gazed, erupts from the mouth of the Pillar Of Urthekau. The radiant beam lances through the wings and side of the Maggot Dragon, puncturing and blistering the meat within as it reels and gouts hissing blood. The wound upon its side is cavernous, the size of a castle gate, steaming with vapour and gore. There is a thunderous crash and eruption of sand as the Maggot Dragon falls from the Great Dark Sky and plummets to the Dead Land. Grit and sediment fills the air obscuring your view of it carcass.The Pillar Of Urthekau is flickering and the mouth of this god-cannon is burning, glowing orange like a melting crucible. The incinerating beam flickers and fades, but the coruscating eruption of fire ignited in the air is still relentlessly scorching and blackening the sand all around. You can feel the Pillar growing hot as you struggle to keep it raised towards the Maggot Dragon.(choose ONE:) > Keep the Pillar Of Urthekau aimed at the Maggot Dragon, continue to incinerate it> Abandon the Pillar Of Urthekau before it melts. Approach the fallen Maggot Dragon to see if it is dead.> Abandon the Pillar Of Urthekau, retrieve an additional nearby weapon> Bone Claw> Trumbash Knife-Axe> Katar Punch-Dagger
>>5106334> try to parry with the Shamshir> Abandon the Pillar Of Urthekau before it melts. Approach the fallen Maggot Dragon to see if it is dead.
(You have lost the Shamshir. It is wrenched from your hands by the barbed tail of the Maggot Dragon as you block its incoming blow, saving you from damage. The only weapon you now possess is the Conqueror Sword)Nothing could survive the scorching fire that spewed from the mouth of the god-cannon, the Pillar Of Urthekau. Yet as you approach the steaming crater, and the billowing stench of the charred mass engulfs you, an abhorrent tangle of glistening limbs clambers out of the cavernous wound and flees towards the sands beyond. This new creature appears to be moulting, rapidly sprouting pink limbs, ribs, spines and malformed wings, as if the gruesome trauma you had dealt upon the Maggot Dragon had re-invigorated it to be born anew.(You do not possess a throwing weapon.)(You have gained the trait: To See Them Driven Before You)You can see grotesque petals forming from the searing blood of the Maggot Dragon. They resemble the form of a Black Lotus.Choose ONE only:> Chase Tola'ath into the Parched Sands> Abandon Tola'ath, harvest the Black Lotus before it disappears
>>5106684Thought that would happen.Damn, those Vorukasha would love this.> Abandon Tola'ath, harvest the Black Lotus before it disappearsSorry Barbarian, but your inconvenience helps another.
Black LotusEssence of the Ancient Promise, used to traverse the Astral Sea. Binds consciousness to the void to achieve transcendence beyond flesh, words or spirit. Few can comprehend or survive the revelation it brings.
When you touch the Black Lotus, there is nothing left to harvest or hold. You fear you may have destroyed it. But instead, you feel the jaws of a great beast close around you, swallowing you whole.
For Tola'ath was merely a worm, the bait in the jaws of the true leviathan, Dag Gadol. Did not the Elders once teach of a mortal swallowed and carried in the maw of a monstrous beast of the Sea? The same beast that lifts you and ascends to the Great Dark Sky.
When you awake you stand upon an unfamiliar shore, a world that is far from what you have known. The Conqueror's Sword is in your hand, but the Great Dark Sky is gone. You have felt the entwined fate of another haunt your own. Only by finding her, perhaps ending her, will you be able to meet your doom.(END ...for now...?)
I guess we'll be resuming with the Privateer playthrough? Or be doing something unique since this is an odd situation with one MC after another.Anyways, I'll be sleeping soon. Make good choices anons.
(You have used the Red Lotus Flower Perfume / Elixir:The Barbarian is healed of his woundsThe Privateer's Charm is increased)There is the sound of horses outside, but when you look through the windows of the Estate Evremonde, this is not a carriage for departing guests. It resembles a tumbrel for transporting prisoners.When Yargai the Perverse Merchant sees you, he is delighted. You notice the hidden bundle beneath his robes has disappeared, though his belly is as rotund as ever.Aho-ho, my dear, I did not expect you to be back so soon, hmmm? The treasures of Langkasuk are truly irresistible! As irresistible as me! Even the Lord Regent loves Yargai! I kept a special gold mask in reserve for him, in a very secret place close to me, hopefully when he wears it he will not mind the smell! But I have nothing left to sell you, my dear... The Masquerade will come to an end soon, and I must return to fending off the amorous attentions of my third wife! Or second concubine! Whichever one will have me! I am not desperate! You know, that ancient chart I gave you earlier was an heirloom of hers - the vulture-faced one. She claimed to be descended from a Great Conqueror, but it is probably nonsense. If you go far back enough everyone is descended from some notorious figure or other. It is probably completely worthless - I mean, a great treasure! A great treasure indeed! I gave it away for free, it was not junk I could not sell, and in no way was the price of a separate purchase inflated to accommodate for it! No refunds! Only treasures! > Give Yargai the Galernese Naval Bombard: > Exchange for a pocket pistol right now> Leave empty-handed, but trust Yargai to provide a better weapon for you in the future.(You have lost the chance to bring the Barbarian into your own fate.Yargai can exchange the Galernese Hand Bombard for a pocket pistol he carries. Alternatively, you can leave empty-handed and trust Yargai to provide you with a better weapon in the future, should you ever encounter him again)> Warn Yargai that he may be arrested (betray the High Magister / Unbidden Court)choose only ONE:> Return to where you last saw the Vourukasha> Find Lady Evremonde> Find Balthasar, Captain of the Guard
Small Double-Barrel Pocket PistolConcealed, Short Range, Quickdraw, Loud, Inaccurate, Slow Reload, Weak:(Armour)A fast 2-shot, over-and-under firearm that cannot pierce armour. It can be hidden in a pocket or coat sleeve.
>>5107078No need to trade anything now.> Find Lady Evremonde
>>5107078>You have lost the chance to bring the Barbarian into your own fate.Curious what this means
The High Magister was secretly trying to use the Dance Of Beasts to kill the Lord Regent. He has deliberately used his persona as Merchant Nicolau to let the Vourukasha know that the Lord Regent would be here, hoping that they would do it for him.(You did not discover this:)The Captain of the Guard tried to dissuade the Lord Regent from opening the masquerade. Lady Evremonde and Yargai know that the Lord Regent has decided to attend the Dance Of Beasts secretly, under a disguise of a golden lion mask.The High Magister has realised too late that his plans have been disrupted. He does not know how the Lord Regent has been disguised or where he is exactly. The Magister was thus trying to use you to lure the Vourukasha into attacking openly, perhaps even persuade their leader Saertu Moon-Arisen to arrive and attack the masquerade directly herself, and for the Lord Regent to be forced into revealing himself in the aftermath. If you had fired the hand cannon at either the Magister or the Vourukasha - at around the same moment as the Barbarian was trying to work out how to aim it from the Shipwreck Shrine against the Maggot Dragon - the Barbarian would have been teleported by the shrine to help you fight everyone. (Terminator 2 style, naked lol but sword in hand. It would basically be like Conan?/Schwarzenegger coming to save Sarah Connor) This opportunity to entwine the fates has since passed.The endings are probably:
> approach the Captain of the Guard, obey the Magister / Unbidden CourtThe High Magister has ordered them to arrest you immediately and send you to the Couvent des Madelonnettes. Even if you accomplished his mission, he could never let it be known that he has involved himself with you. The Unbidden Court does not really even accept Lowborn, and he would readily betray you.
> approach the VourukashaThey probably would still not let you become a witch-pirate, as you have to kill Highborn before they accept you. If you ever told the Vourukasha that you swore allegiance to the Unbidden Court, they would kill you. But otherwise the Vourukasha would probably help hide you a bit from the Magister and his guards.
> approach Yargai / Lady EvremondeThere was a chance for you to expose the High Magister's plans to the Lord Regent, by disguising yourself as Lemuel and meeting him with Lady Evremonde. Only the Lord Regent can order the High Magister to be arrested. To do this you had to avoid violating too many social rules or norms, steal, use magic etc. or attract the attention of the guards. Unfortunately this opportunity has gone as Lemuel himself is in no condition to meet him. I think it is likely that the High Magister has already left the masquerade. So the only option left here is to tell no-one your knowledge of the Magister's treachery, and flee the Dance Of Beasts.
Some of the influences this time round:- dnd 2e Dark Sun setting lol with the nakedness, the bone weapons and barbarians with no metal swords. Also did they ever explain why in the Terminator films you have to be naked to teleport, yet somehow wrapping metal in skin just works?- literally Jonah and the Whale, Tola'ath and Dag Gadol, or if you want to be more historical the same worm-maggot serpent thing that destroys immortality from the Epic Of Gilgamesh- well it is pretty obvious Vampire the Masquerade. Even if the Highborn are not actually vampires they basically behave like them. In the original sci fi Invultua playthroughs, the setting lore I had in mind was that the Lowborn are like the menial labour of the original world vessels (dynastic generations crossing vast parsecs of actual physical space and distance) who had to be reincarnated ie recycled into biomass over and over again to keep the vessels running. The Highborn are like the commanders who retain their memory, do not die and oversaw the ships. When the world vessels all failed, they switched to voidships instead and used the world vessels to simulate all travel, all destinations and reality. To do this they had to bind the machine-demons, basically sort of computer programming/AI, and that is essentially what the Ancient Promise, the rites, magic and sorcery derives from.
>>5107348Ah. What a shame. Wish we could rewind and get a steamy Barbarian/Privateer scene kek.
The theme of this playthrough was that it was about temptation, breaking free of what was told to you, and seizing power for yourself as either the Barbarian or the Privateer. The items were about entwining their fates, a bit similar to how in the Sibyl playthrough you saw the witch-pirate ship spectacularly explode as you shot/stabbed the Marquis. There are a few hidden combinations there...This time round, the thing I was most worried about - the tarot cards and magic randomness messing the story up - did not happen at all. Somehow by pure chance all the rolls were pretty appropriate including the amazing Fool card roll ( >>5102620 ), my own Strength card spell roll as the Magister ( >>5103642 ), and even the divination of Eight Swords for Yargai ( >>5101897 ). You guys also seemed to work out the item combinations with the flint and the cannon pretty easily with no problems. I assume you worked out that picking up appropriate items as one character transferred them into the world of another.What I may have messed up a bit unfortunately is the intrigue section here>>5106115Everyone was pretty tired and confused from New Year and I gave too many choices. It is frustrating because at the table I could just skip a lot of stuff, explain and do dialogue so easily. Throughout the game I was really hoping for more fights as well especially when you got the tarot - just blast down either the Magister or the Vourukasha, but sadly it did not happen. If the Barbarian had gone into the ominous ruin, he could probably have bought a bit more time for the Privateer to do some more investigating. The other interesting thing with the Barbarian is if you simply fought everyone, for instance trying to fight Bektamun and her Warband with just a flint knife, I would still allow you to survive similar to how Conan survives the Tree Of Woe in the films lol. Just feel that is appropriate for barbarians.I tried to give a hint here ( >>5106115 ) with pic related of the ship in the storm on the performer stage that if you started a fight and blew up the stage, something might happen on the Barbarian shipwreck shrine side...I was trying to manoeuvre you also towards the Vourukasha ship but that did not happen really either. Maybe this playthrough was just too complicated with the intertwining stories etc. The doom on the barbarian sword is a bit inspired by what I felt when I met Schwarzenegger once in real life. This was at an extremely cringeworthy screening of one of the Expendables films (don't judge me, I got the tickets for free lol) and it was after the news of his weird affair with a maid had come out ruining his marriage. I just thought it was weird how Conan defeated Thulsa Doom, but eventually ruined his life over a household maid lol.
>>5107369Now that I had the time to think about it, I deeply regret not shooting the Magister. The barbarian broke the Elders’ rules and did not become cursed or anything. We should’ve taken our chances. We missed what would’ve been an awesome scene.
>>5107369Yeah, I worked out the item combinations and the item tranfer easily. The thing that took me aback is the fact that it ended before I thought it would. I was distracted by a lot of the worldbuilding elements and items descriptions I thought this playthrough would go on longer, not end here. That is why I made the switch to Yargai, I was anticipating preparing for what I thought would be later story beats.Let me explain some of my reasoning. >4/Galernese Hand BombardMid-range, Bulky, Heavy, Deafening, Devastating, Explosive, Incendiary, Siegebreaker, Slow, Unreliable, Inaccurate, DangerousThe experienced cannoneers of the Galernese Navy warn it is almost impossible to fire this weapon without injury to self and others. There is a rumour amongst traders that Imperial Langkasuk is interested in making a copy of its mechanism.I thought by giving Yargai the gun, he'd be able to send it to the Langkasuk to be copied. I thought this was a hidden item description hint and that he was a spy. Hence why I thought he'd be able to reveal a bunch of hidden knowledge to us.>10/Red Lotusflower PerfumeThe pleasing fragrance of this elixir is near universal across all cultures, and no words need be spoken for its seductive scent to be understood. In Langkasuk the lotus flower is believed to represent the Triskelion, restoring purity to body, speech and mind, much as the lotusflower floats above the dark waters of desire. The Witches of Vourukasha are said to seek a rare Black Lotus that sickens those it touches.Likewise, the last line of this item description made me choose to take the Black Lotus stuff in the Barbarian side of things under the assumption that we could meet up the two MCs and we could exchange the Black Lotus stuff for favours or acceptance into their ranks. I also got distracted by some of the apparently miscellaneous worldbuilding elements. The Black Lotus being some ultimate poison made me think we could use it to kill the Queen of Galerne. Now, why do I want to do this you might ask? I thought based on the dialogue options we had when meeting the harlequin that because the Queen was related to the Marquis, that in my mind of course she was a vampire(!), so I suddenly held privately in my head that THIS is Souvarine's plan, she'll be a secret final boss and we'll kill her with the Black Lotus. There was a bunch of stuff like this.I also feel like a lot of the stuff you just revealed was pretty opaque to us, despite our high Instinct and Charm stats, or maybe we just choose the wrong choices, I dunno.
>>5107369>Regarding not fighting.For me, a lot of this had to do both the specifics of the circumstances just before those hypothetical fights would've begun and also our in-character motivations. Myself and a lot of players on qst use the information we are given in-game about our character goals to inform our own. From the Privateer character description I knew we wanted the Letter of Marque and Reprisal, and a second goal I gave myself was to obtain anything that would increase our power or get us a better ending. Part of this scramble for better materiel conditions, more power, and a better ending stems from your unique format of questing.Hence, once we obtained magick from the Magister, we were no longer adversaries in my mind despite our initial hostile impressions. I also didn't favour our chances as the Privateer against the Magister because of our knowledge of his cane-sword as a witch-breaker weapon and the fact that the guards and the Captain were right outside the door. In my mind, we would almost certainly lose or emerge out of the fight extremely badly wounded, fighting multiple opponents with a presumably meagre Strength stat (perhaps I was confused by you saying that Strength counted for all "fighter" things, in my mind Instinct is only good for initial surprise attacks in combat) against presumably armoured opponents and a guy with a weapon that I assumed hard-countered our magick with a one-shot gun and a smallsword-esque weapon, hence I was adverse to the fight.This went even more so for the Vourukasha because I wanted to join them, not fight them. I thought fighting multiple magical opponents was suicide and that they were "stronger" magically than us. To explain why I didn't intend to fight them we have to go back to what I thought our goals were. I thought our end goal should be obtaining the letter or doing something equivalent to that. Thus, if we became a witch-captain, it would be equal to getting the letter. To do that, in my mind we needed magick and then to perform a deed that would make us worthy of leadership. So once the Magister outlined that we should find their leader and keep this quiet and subtle and not use the guards to arrest everyone, I took that in stride as him presenting the objectives of the Unbidden Court at this masquerade. Yes, I assumed this in spite of the numerous notifications that they adhere to betrayal. As I said, his intentions were annoyingly opaque to me. I simply thought that what he said was his actual goal but that he would want all the credit or to steal some item we'd loot from the Vourukasha later down the line, so he'd end up betraying us then and then we'd fight but by then we'd be stronger and more prepared. From there I thought we had two main options. Play it straight and find the leader and do as the magister instructed, beat the magister and rise in station in the Unbidden Court, roll credits, get our ending; or cozy up to the Vourukasha without explicitly- (1/2)
>>5107369>>5107615-betraying the Unbidden Court right away. (I thought that the posts >>5105986 and >>5105995 meant they had an immediate magical way of detecting betrayal and disseminating that info through their hierarchy) The purpose of hypothetically doing this would to be to delay action on the Magister's part to prevent him from be proactive and dealing with us while also having genuine intentions to get close to the Vourukasha and eventually help them in their goals that night and betraying the Court at a critical moment and killing the Lord Regent or assisting with whatever their goal was.The reason I wanted to get close to them and why I mentioned preferring them is because of the mentions by Lemuel of not wanting a woman on board a ship, hence I reasoned that in-character we'd want to join up with a more...I dunno if egalitarian is the right word...but more friendly to the feminine sex faction. I thought it just fit perfectly once we discovered we actually had the capability for magick with the tarot deck despite our character description at the beginning of the thread plainly stating we did not have magic.>Some of my thoughts and questions.Regarding the Barbarian playthrough, I kinda played myself (as in I confused myself, not that I was Self-Inserting). It was SO obvious that the Elders were full of shit and that there was a hidden truth that I convinced myself that that was too simple and that this must be a "two opposing maybe-equally true ideologies/worldviews/metaphysical viewpoints" sort of thing. I thought the Tola'ath and the Tree Shrine would be genuinely real as presented by the Elders but there would be some things she was hiding and that what they said about the Cursed Iron and Great Dark Sky and all the other shit was just them lying about their enemy or opposed religion/ideology/other ethnic group. I thought it was more complex than these people are full of shit and there is this one Great Big Lie and that there were really two equally valid sides with their own mysteries and that'd we'd have a choice to pick a side.As for questions. What was each parties motivations at the Masquerade, including Yargai, Evermonde, and Lemuel and the Harlequin and the two bigger factions of the Witch-Pirates and the Unbidden Court in general? What was the purpose of some of the unchosen items from item selection and Yargai's shop? What would happen if we went into the ruin or mentioned the child and the family to Kyriarch? Why was the Pillar of Urthekau where it was and what was up with that and the crashed ships? What would happen as the Barbarian if we had chosen the option to contemplate our doom or yell into the sky with Conan the barbarian lines?I had more questions and criticisms, but I've kinda forgotten half of them.Speaking of those character descriptions, I was somewhat confused by them, I assumed that yes and no meant as such and that Maybe meant that you'd have the chance to obtain them during play.
I will say I wish the playthroughs went on longer or that we had a chance to continue these scenarios even if we take too long and a "figure things out to get a better result" prompt is presented or the masquerade would've ended. I feel like we needed more time to make our own plays or gather information before confronting one of the factions, not merely just gather a weapon and some magick before having to face a side or have the playthrough end.Like, if you look at >>5104789 >>5104797 >>5104799 it is filled with stuff we did, learned or didn't learn and there is a lot more we hypothetically missed at learning in many of the prompts. But, a lot of it just seems to be irrelevant or be rendered irrelevant by taking us a path that takes certain characters out of relevancy. That is not to say worldbuilding isn't good, I like learning more about the setting even if it takes place through multiple playthroughs. But it is hard to parse what is actually relevant info for the playthrough to obtain a better ending and what is worldbuilding. Like, if the Golden Lion Mask was what was hidden by Yargai's belly and it was worn by the Lord Regent, then that would've been very important for us to find out. But a lot of our choice prompts give worldbuilding info, which I love, but as a direct consequence of your quest format with the short playthroughs, everything seeming to be on a time limit, you understandably not wanting to burn out, etc, these choices and certain info is competing with ones that are actually relevant to us in the current playthrough. This in my opinion is a bit harmful as it gives us a limited amount of time for digressions and making our own plays and we have to very quickly parse what is important and what we shouldn't care about if we want to decipher a pathway to the final confrontation and a good ending before you (imho) preemptively end the playthrough.I feel like if these playthroughs had a bit more time to breathe it'd be more satisfactory. Some of them have ended poorly in my opinion. I felt the Preceptor playthrough was a good example of us screwing up by our own fault and I have no complaints there. But the Consort playthrough ended abruptly and so did the Privateer side of this one or at least I assume it did since you are now infodumping, and while I enjoyed the process of both I feel the ending could be better if we had more time. Like, even if the masquerade ended and a lot of the relevant parties of interest dispersed, I think they would take time to leave and travel far enough away that we couldn't chase one or more and fulfill some of our objectives.The playthroughs don't have to be proper long-form quests, but it feels like we could still do your typical short playthroughs while still having a bit more time.Aaaaaannnddd...I have to stop typing now, since my lights are flickering and I don't want to lose this post.
>>5107578>>5107615>>5107650I think everything you said makes sense. I am so entangled in the worldbuilding I do not realise that not everyone else has all the information on my spreadsheets lol. And of course it was made worse this time round with the alternating characters etc.What I was trying to do with the hand cannon, the Galernese Hand Bombard was to use it as a signal from you to choose a side, ie the moment you shoot anyone with it, they are getting blown up lol and there is no going back. You could still keep the item after firing it and trade later etc. I did not quite understand when you guys made the dialogue choice with the Harlequin - why not just say overthrow the Queen, or alternatively go to war against Langkasuk etc. because either choice would have won her interest. She was daring you to say it out loud, all the guests listening around would just assume you were rehearsing some performance lol, they already failed to notice blatant assassins disguised as pirates.Originally I imagined the Privateer as male, with the switch to female I was scrambling a bit to try and accommodate it into my lore lol. I was trying to engineer a vaguely historical way to get a woman on a ship within the lore setting, the two ways I thought of were to use a bit of intrigue to obtain the explorer's letter, and another was go full rebellion/witch/heretic and kill all the Highborn and go with Vourukasha. The High Magister was always intended as a trap - because the Privateer is Lowborn and an Outcast, if you ever go with the Unbidden Court they would absolutely betray you (this is what the Privateer character description was implying). I think in hindsight with the really spectacular Fool card spell roll you got, I should not have made it a such hindrance (ie the explorer running out and making it more difficult for you) I should probably have just made that spell knock the Explorer out or something. In the end I went for the comedy buttocks scene lol because I was trying to give some negative consequence to the magic and probably overdid it (note how when you cast magic, you never got tired or exhausted like the Sibyl does).So the character magic descriptions are deliberately unclear, maybe I overdid it again lol. The idea is that magic is always a bit dangerous and unpredictable unlike dnd magic missile. The only characters which can never access magic are the ones with NEVER (the in-game explanation like the Marotte in the original invultua playthrough, the null psykers lol). All other classes can use magic but may either need to become corrupted like the Beggar Knight in the original game, steal it like the Libertine or Privateer, or like the Eschatonomist they get it via items, but cannot really control the effects. It is a bit unclear to give me some manoeuvrability to balance it differently based on the combat prowess and weapons of each class.
So the Black Lotus and Red Lotus was intended to be used in the ritual for binding witch-pirates to their ships. It is a big deal, basically it is like teleport anywhere and what Bektamun was doing in the desert and the Dead Land. I am not sure if all of you guys played my original Invultua quest so maybe that reference was not such a good idea. If you know about the Eschatonomist quest in that playthrough, the lore about Urthekau (actual real life Egyptian magic god) and the balance between the Black Span of Desire and The Red Lord Of Ruin - it is inspired from the Egyptian underworld judgement mythology of how they believed the gods would weigh the sinful heart of a person against a feather etc to see if it was in balance, whether to reward them with afterlife or to feed their heart to a crocodile as punishment. This is echoed by the very first words that the High Magister speaks to you, and also the symbolism of the Unbidden Court.I imagined the Pillar Of Urthekau basically as being like the laser cannon or beam weapon of a giant mech lol - if you remember from the original playthrough Urthekau believe guns can only be trusted when wielded by demons/machines/drones, not humans. The Tree Shrine is a bit of a reference to the Preceptor's vision at the gallery/theatre, when he realises that Berceuse is being used to create and test weapons and magic for war by Axiom Galdra and Urthekau. The Dead Land, the vast battlefield of bones and weapons is perhaps the simulated reality outcome of that world.
>>5107680>Originally I imagined the Privateer as malelol, so did I. I didn't suddenly decide to have the Privateer be female, I thought that the Privateer was always female but her gender was just never brought up until that sorceress choice prompt. I'm not sure if her gender was mentioned before that, but I just assumed she was male until you corrected that notion by mentioning her gender with a gendered noun.>Fool card incident.I understood the desire for comedy considering the card we drew. I just thought the cost of using magick would be semi-voided considering the Fool is such a potent, good card that is generally considered positive in tarot. Or that the nature of the tarot deck somehow was different than magick that a person possesses internally and hence we could use it without cost, like a magick item or something versus just naturally being witch or wizard.>Character descriptions/magick stuff.That's fine, but I will say it makes judging how strong we are and what we are capable of much harder than in a regular TTRPG or quest even one that is diceless or more narrative. Like, in a quest/TTRPG with dice we can analyse the dice, the mechanics, and the math and figure out how strong we are or our opposing force is, it is harder here. Even a diceless or more narrative system can be analysed in such a way for example the TTRPG Lords of Gossamer and Shadow or the system it is based on, Amber Diceless Roleplaying. My problem, and this may not apply to others, is that I'm not very familiar with some of the systems you've mentioned as the basis for this system. I've heard of Burning Wheel and know some of the tendencies that designers or GMs have when they are inspired by that system, but I've never actually read it myself. I own the books with the Cypher system in it, but I haven't gotten around to reading them, or if I have then I skimmed it a long time ago and forgot all about it. I have a lot of TTRPG books. There were probably some others too that you mentioned that I'm probably not familiar with.>>5107682>Black/Red lotus, original quest.I thought you'd be able to tell, but I have played your original quest, I was probably the most active voter and most consistent player throughout all the playthroughs in your original quest, the one who wrote the wall-of-text criticisms. Though there might've been an equally active player depending on whether or not the other anon was actually the same anon that just had their ID switch due to IP issues.
>>5107704Wow, thank you very much for the analysis. ^_^ Ah ok it was another anon who wanted the witch-pirate stuff I got confused. It is quite helpful understanding it from the player perspective because I keep thinking a lot of stuff is obvious when it is not. Yes the items are sort of inspired by the Cypher system philosophy, the Flint Knife was sort of hinting that if you took it there would always be stuff lying around nearby to an extent. The trait stuff I borrowed as a narrative concept from Burning Wheel but if you have ever played it the system is pretty masochistic lol. It is like the diametric opposite of dnd "look I rolled 20 give me all the amazing stuff and knowledge", to advance at anything in Burning Wheel you have to fail so many times, in fact you default expect to fail most rolls, all the rolls have consequences, if you get slightly injured your dice pool is wrecked and it takes like 3 months to heal lol. Also there is some weird metagaming stuff where you deliberately signal "director / author stance" vs "actor player stance" to the gm or other players stuff you want to happen with the beliefs and goals to conflict with each other and get artha/xp which never made much sense to me (how do you know how the character conflicts before the quest even starts etc, what if it just never happens or is not relevant to the quest) The thing I took from Burning Wheel is more just the philosophy of how you have to push yourself to uncomfortable situations to advance the character as opposed to wizard does fireball, warlock does eldritch blast, paladin does smite, barbarian does rage etc.I try to maintain the Aristotelian unity of time place action etc, the Sibyl I think worked well because it is a single event in a vaguely connected single island location in a single day. With the Barbarian Privateer I think I should have just kept it to one character. Looking back myself it was just too confusing. I was trying to go for the fantasy novel style switch perspective multiple narrative thing, I think it may just be too hard to follow. It is frustrating because at a table as a GM giving out dialogue conversation hints is so easy whereas dialogue here is a wall of text, a wait, a wall of text etc
The way I approach the fights is generally nothing is insta-kill or insta-death unlike the OSR random spike trap low hp death etc. I am not so much interested in mechanics of combat I think there are other quests here doing a much better job with the dice rolls. I am more interested in using the player choices to explore and develop/change/alter the world setting permanently etc. The quests I design are more like puzzles where you are trying to discover a hidden plot or thing, the tradeoff is commit to one path and live with the consequences, or explore multiple paths to learn more but risk failing to stop/uncover the hidden plot etc. The time pressure is there to ensure that each time you discover something the plot is advancing and you have to take a bit of a guess or leap of faith to draw a conclusion. I realise with the feedback though that with the Dance Of Beasts scenario the pressure was probably too much. Originally I thought the Barbarian would want to speak to the four in the ruin (yes, they would have given you water) buying more time for the Privateer at the masquerade. I even created a desert mirage to loop back to the ruin lol but it did not happen, so I had to move the quest on. I probably should have added some more encounters in between to give you some more time in the parallel world.
>>5107821I can't remember which other anon also wanted to be a witch-pirate, but I started wanting it part way through the Privateer playthrough.>Burning wheel stuffThat sounds pretty miserable.>POV stuffI think the switching POVs is fine, lots of quests do it. It worked fine in the Beggar-Knight playthrough but the confusion there was because it was happening for the first time and I wasn't sure who the second POV was. I think the issue here was more about it being the holidays, coming back tired to read your posts makes it hard to catch up considering your pace is pretty fast by modern day qst standards, though it would've been normal or even slightly slow by older /tg/ standards or other boards standards back when quest took place there. So, being able to do a deep reading to catch all the references and relevant info while tired and rushing to catch up in time to vote for the next choice made it a little hard, plus the stuff I mentioned about the not knowing which information is just worldbuilding versus what is immediately relevant for this playthrough plus remembering all the relevant stuff from your previous quest, which is compounded by the low player participation. There isn't much player discussion or voting despite your quest apparently being moderately popular judging by the rating in the archives.>>5107865While I like your emphasis on the changing world and don't mind the diceless style at all, I am more mixed on the puzzle style elements. It makes combat or certain scenarios feel almost railroaded, like you need to guess such and such element or have done so-and-so beforehand to get the best ending.I won't say combat is without tension, in fact I find combat in your quests to be very tense and engaging, but I will say it lacks the...I don't know how to describe it...the sudden grounded feeling that certain system or even real life has where things wrong based on a quick mistaken reaction, a wrong maneuver, or bad dice roll. But, even that isn't quite right, there are moments like that like when we fought Kyriarch's goons as the Beggar-Knight and some other moments, but what I am trying to say is that puzzle element overshadows the "feeling" of the fights and makes it less like we are choosing between say, which way or manner to swing our sword or the broad stylistic strategy we are pursuing with our movements and more like we are choosing right or wrong options to fit a given scenario. That isn't to say this is bad, I wouldn't say this is an element of your QMing that is bad or amateurish, it is actually a common element of diceless quests I would say, I would argue that Mini Anon's Boruto quest is sort of like this, but then not really because we have more versatility there with the different jutsu's and things we can do as a superhuman, whereas here we merely have our stats, weapons, and a few one shot spells, so in this quest it feels like we are searching to fit the right elements into the given-(1/2)
>>5107865>>5107993-scenario to achieve victory.I will also say the "do you know such-and-such needed for X" elements also remind me of Valen quest, so while my reaction is mixed to the puzzle elements here I'm still finding it somewhat interesting and fun and any similarity to that quest is something I'll enjoy considering my love for it.>Time stuff.To clarify, I don't think the scenarios are too hard. I just feel like aside from you wanting to avoid burn out there isn't much reason why the playthrough couldn't extend a little past the "Aristotelian unity of time place action etc" that you mentioned or why we couldn't have a little more time.I understand the purpose of the time pressure, and it does work to make decisions feel more relevant and tense, but in many of the playthroughs it also feels artificial and slightly immersion breaking, where events and social gatherings seem to pass lightning quick or disperse over the course of a conversation. To give some examples just from memory, the time in the Eschatonomist (or however it is spelled) playthrough in the market, the market seemed to close pretty quickly - though that is plausible, we don't know the time of day at the start of the playthrough - or more egregiously during the Preceptor playthrough, the event we were supposed to attend seemed to pass over the course of us getting briefed on the capabilities of our squad, something that would take like 2 or 3 minutes IRL. There are probably some other instances that I can't remember too.>Barbarian Ruin stuff.I think I made a bad decision by not going into the ruin, I thought it may have water or be plot relevant, I just wanted to test trying to follow our oaths and seeing if I was right about there being two equal opposed ideologies and that there was some merit to following the oaths. It seemed to sort of fit with your "pick one pathway and follow it to get better" style. (2/2)
>>5108292Cool, it is always interesting to hear the things that inspire your imagery.I haven't heard of Byzantium.Are we getting another playthrough in a little while or continuing this one? Or are you going to move on and work on another quest after a little while?
>where events and social gatherings seem to pass lightning quick or disperse over the course a conversation. I agree with this criticism, it is hard to do a conversation with the text format. As a gm at a table it is so easy to roleplay an actual conversation and give hints. Burning Wheel has this Duel Of Wits mechanic (it is sort of like select rock-paper-scissors with rhetorical strategies) and so I am inspired a bit by that. For instance the conversation with the Harlequin - she is part of a Lowborn, radical faction, any appeal to violence attracts her. Maybe I should have given a second chance in that conversation too, as it turned out to be quite important. With the ruin and railroading lol I could see it becoming a problem - there were actually two factions in the Barbarian side, but one was a trap! It was meant to echo the Lady Of Sorrows and the Edict sending you to your death in the first game (hence the Nastrond reference, I clearly should stop using it as it is cursed lol).The Dead Land is meant to be a bit Biblical like Herod with the Great Conqueror eliminating scions and chosen children etc and sending the strongest to die / be sacrificed to the tree shrine in the desert. The Elders are meant to echo the Three Wise Men except they are evil lol. I thought about moving the four from the ruin to the oasis here ( >>5102543 ) but then decided it makes no sense, they are fleeing they would not move backwards, you already chose allegiance to the Great Conqueror etc. The scenario I was planning was to somehow turn the Conqueror sword curse back on the Vulture Lord instead - note he is served by a woman Bektamun, and if I could engineer a way for the Barbarian to be united with the Privateer, the Privateer to ascend to Bektamun witch-pirate status using the Red, Black Lotus (it would start to sicken you, you would have to get on a ship to the ritual island quickly) and use the witch-pirate ship magic to teleport to the Dead Land to fight the Great Conqueror Devourer Of The Great Dark Sky etc. The film reference I was thinking of for the ritual island is actually this vampire film Byzantium (not sure if you have heard or know it) where in that film the vampires are created only by visiting this Irish island, they enter into a dark kiln/monk hut thing and the waterfalls across the island run red and stuff. I was inspired by that film scene so I made the vampire-like Unbidden Court covet the witch-pirate ritual island etc. It is also why all the pictures and art I upload for the Galerne setting look vaguely Irish island cliffs seagulls causeway etc. With the two brothers on a shore racing to claim the island is adapted from an actual Irish legend around the red hand etc.
>>5108301Oops I deleted last post due to weird image crop lol. I have not decided yet, I think a lot of this setting is explored already. What I would be tempted to do is a sort of more Microscope-rpg style worldbuilding game (I know there are cyoas on /tg already) because there is just so much effort needed to get images and text etc and create items on my side. Maybe worldbuilding is a bit lower pressure versus my slightly emotionally sadistic choose wrong option railroad death style conversations lol. Not sure if anyone is interested in that or if it fits /qst format. But I probably need to go back and have a think and get some more inspiration
>>5108311I'm not familiar with Microscope, so I couldn't say how much appeal it would have myself or if it would be appropriate for /qst/. I think a collective worldbuilding game would be fine, I think I've participated lightly in a few over the years, but it honestly isn't really to my interest, at least not at the moment. But, with the quality of your writing I'm sure it would be popular enough and less intimidating to play for newcomers. I assume more people would participate in it than in this quest and your first quest.I will say I don't find the the prospect of not always winning or the quest being hard intimidating or off-putting, so if that is a large reason for your choice of game-style switch then I don't think it is warranted, but if the effort to write all this out and find so many images is a strain on you or you just want a change of pace then that is fine.I can't really offer any further guidance or opinions without more specifics, so I'll leave my thoughts at that.
The adventures of Kospel and also the friendly merchant Yargai continue here, but something about them has changed...?>>5121867