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Topic: Interordi RPG - Project Theta

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Ribitta
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Posted on August 24, 2015 at 0:38:00 [Post link]
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Orup nodded, getting his belongs all tied down and ready to go. "Aye, near the back. It's where they bring in all the big ones to sacrifice," he said and then turned to his enormous animal, patting its thick hide lovingly. "But I wasn't going to let that happen to you, now was I? No, no, I certainly was not. All right, girl, let's crash this party for good!" With a cry, he leaped up onto the top of the amphibian with surprising agility, heeling its sides with a triumphant 'Hyah!' as he booted it down the tunnel, after Rua.

"Stand aside, boy, we'll lead you out of this den of evil."

---

John, who had been all but completely silent since Ginther's arrival, eyed the woman across from him, weighing the situation. He wished he could have a dozen men from Thimbelatch with him, right now, but she made a fine companion. He had a feeling that he wouldn't last too long on the road ahead of him without her, anyway.

After a long, thoughtful silence, he replied, "Not badly. I've wondered since the moment they found me who I was and what I was doing out here. Maybe there's a part of me that remembers who I really am, deep down, because these pieces seem to fit. I don't know why, but nothing Ginther just said really surprised me. This seems like what we're supposed to be doing, for some reason."

He looked away; what reason was that? If he knew, it seemed like it could go a long way toward keeping them alive, but he didn't know. "And you? Still want to do this?" he asked.

---

Thankfully, Elle'n managed to catch Larent's entrance down the stairs before he disappeared almost entirely. If not for that, she wondered if she'd have been able to spot him at all--certainly not first. At any rate, she was closing in behind him quickly, and in a few moments she had made it to his side, handing him a ticket casually.

"Glad to see you're still alive, Shepard," she said calmly, as if they did this every day.

---

Right, Syn and Lace. Good to know the names of the two psychopaths he had on board, then. Gigri motioned them to follow him down the tight corridor, unsealing the door and walking them down the length of his modest ship. In only a few moments, they were already near the front, and he opened the door to the cockpit where his two crew-members were.

"Right, so, this is Schwinn," he said, pointing at the woman in the pilot's chair who was chewing a piece of gum loudly. She just raised a hand in greeting at them, never turning around. "And this is Bavaria," he said, pointing to a humanoid robot over on the side who was working on fixing a component of the computer. "We named him that because he's broken, most of the time."

"I resent that," the machine replied, its voice sounding dry but wholeheartedly human.

---

Lajag did her very best not to roll her eyes at the man in front of her. No, definitely not the one she was looking for. She had heard rumors of someone defecting, recently--a malfunction in the system. Normally these things would be routinely rounded up and scuttled on to the next life, but they were actually useful in their own way, now that the world was going to Hell. She needed to find it.

"See," she replied, her voice a little thin with efforts for patience. "Dragons are very large and easy to detect. But these enemies from Allondell are much craftier than that, and a single undefended crevice could topple your whole kingdom, my liege."

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Posted on August 24, 2015 at 22:10:48 [Post link]
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True to the his word, the alchemist was quick to get them out. They burst back into the courtyards behind the temple as evening was just beginning to fade away to night. The gigantic toad erupted through heavy wooden doors, smashing them apart in the center with a lash of its gnarly head. Rua lunged out of the darkness after the beast, Charon-Ur's runeblade tied to his back like a trophy, followed by the transformed Relayia, who appeared with a high-pitched, warbling snarl.

The gathering cultists still present at the temple froze at the sight of them, at the crazed-looking warrior with their master's prized blade upon his back, flanked by terrible beasts ready to kill at a moment's notice.

===The Lodge===


"Do I really even have a choice in the matter now?" Atalanta asked back. She looked away from her companion as he did from her. "If something's hunting Thetas then I need to stay on the move. If we go out into the wastes, then if anything comes after us we'll at least know it's hostile."

With a sigh, she picked herself up and picked up a utensil to finish her meal. "Well, we should finish this first. I dunno about you, but I think it'll be hell to head out into that mess on an empty stomach."


"Why do you care that I care that you care enough to care that I care for caring?" "Conversation isn't your strong point, is it?"
"I worship the supreme comrade Cossack!"
"OugharagarraaahhHHH: When 'Ow' just won't cut it."
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Posted on August 25, 2015 at 21:42:39 [Post link]
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"Hm... have our little friend stir something up."

The invisible eye behind Lajag duplicated, and the second one floated closer to Lajag's shoulder, it then grew to the size of Lajag's head and fluttered to the Baron's fruit bowl, placing little larvae inside each of the fruit pieces. It then rushed to a nearby table, telekinetically grasped a flask of alchohol from one of the Baron's men's hands, and whisked it away at another one of his colleagues, hoping to cause a fight. It then divided multiple times and started causing chaos around the fortress. While it did so, it made each conflict seemingly the fault of the Baron's men.

Ajax
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Posted on August 28, 2015 at 5:12:45 [Post link]
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Tsuminar


Tsuminar Proper


Larent managed a bare hint of a smile. "Come now, tell me how you really feel?" He took the ticket, giving it a once over before slipping it into his pocket.

____


Great Ocean


Syn and Lace took in their new, decidedly temporary companions with a appraising air, Syn's eyes narrowed as she took in the machinery powering the vessel. "Where's the rest of your crew?" She asked simply. Lace giving a jaunty wave to the others.

____


Kemei


The Roost



Var's eyes narrowed at Lajag's words. Dragons---he know more of dragons than he cared to ever admit. The woman at his side gripped his leg tighter, tensing. "If you believe that--" He was cut off by a bottle being thrown from one of his men.

It slammed into an armored figure who reeled back from the shock. Everyone in the room went quiet as the figure in the armor looked up an in a very feminine voice snarled out. "The hell, Carl?"

Around the fortress cries went out as things seemed to go wrong everywhere. Var stood, yanking up a crossbow from by his chair and leveling in Lajag, eyes fiery. "What. Are. You. Doing, sorceress?" He snapped, tone lacking all pretension of evil, sounding just for a moment like a protective father who's child had just been slapped.

Ribitta
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Posted on September 12, 2015 at 17:31:37 [Post link]
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The enormous toad snarled at the cultists, fire bellowing from its gills as its monstrous tongue lolled from left to right, looking for something to eat. Orup petted the amphibian lovingly. "Best if you hop on the back, boy," the alchemist said. Scooting forward just a bit and thumping the back of his seat. "There's room for two. These potions will expire before we can wipe this whole lot up, and they don't have anything we need. Best we make a run for it, I reckon."

---

John nodded, returning to his cooled meal as well, not too concerned with how palatable it was or was not. "I have a key to one of the rooms, and I think we should get some rest before we go out there too. I haven't shut my eyes in over a day, at this point. I can take the first watch, and you can take the second. Then we'll go."

---

For her part, the normally icy young woman quirked a hint of a grin as well, walking along as they were. Shepard still had attitude, and that meant he was still in this game. Maybe it wasn't his choice, now, but it was all the same to her. "If you were dead, I would have to start all over," she said blandly, "so yes, I am glad. It's unfortunate what happened to Aleina, but that's just the price of doing business. If you had waited for me to contact you, like I asked, I would have warned you. But if I'd wanted to sabotage that mission, I can think of some worse cards I could have handed you."

That was about as close as she'd ever get to a concession or an apology over the matter.

---

Gigri turned on the two newcomers, shuffling them out of the cockpit and toward a small, round room with chairs and a map table. Overall, the ship itself was pretty cramped. It was meant to be a low flier for smuggling runs. Usually he didn't smuggle people or other things that needed air and food.

"This is it, girls," he replied smoothly, sitting down and gesturing for them to do the same. "The onboard stealth system takes a lot of the ship's internals, so it really is a smaller craft than you'd think." Kicking his feet up on the table, he decided to get to business.

"So. How long have you been in this game? You don't look particularly happy to be here, and that usually only means one thing, these days."

---

Lajag bit off a curse as the chaos broke out around her, but it was more for something she hadn't seen directly. There was something else here--something evil. When she had been delivering the omen to the Baron, truthfully she had been making it all up. She had sensed no evil here, no intruder, but men would believe anything that fueled their paranoia. Then she felt it, though, as sure as she'd feel the rain on her skin or the wind through her hair. There was nothing for it but to improvise.

"It's here already," she hissed at the Baron. Would he attempt to attack her anyway? Maybe. She would be ready. "If you ever want to see another dragon, I suggest you listen very carefully to my instructions."

RisingDragon
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Posted on September 13, 2015 at 3:41:00 [Post link]
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Rua nodded without looking at his companion, backing up before jumping flatfooted off the ground, high enough to land on the toad's back seemingly effortlessly--he really liked this potion. The beast's flesh was surprisingly hard and sturdy, and he got his footing quickly.

A bolt of energy suddenly hurled through the air, cast by one of the cultist's hands. Reacting with his altered reflexes, Rua's hand went to the new sword and ripped it from its scabbard.

Fire exploded along the length of the thin, silver blade, a wave of heat blasting his face as he swung the blade in an arc, right through the violent sphere of magic and detonating it into harmless motes of light. Rua could only stare in barely-concealed awe at the enchanted blade for a moment, before schooling his features and aiming its point at the offending attackers.

Reacting to his unspoken command, Relayia launched into the air with a flap of her wings, and with a snarl, rained a torrent of fire down upon them. They shrieked and staggered away, falling on their asses and scrambling backwards in a panicky attempt to stay away from the fire. "Go!" Rua yelled over the inferno to Mepple, still holding the burning blade in his hand.

===The Lodge===


Kind of him to give her the second watch even though he was more tired than she was. "Alright then," she said, and went about finishing her meal. It was ten more minutes in silence, seated together but alone with their own thoughts, before they finished and headed for their room.


"Why do you care that I care that you care enough to care that I care for caring?" "Conversation isn't your strong point, is it?"
"I worship the supreme comrade Cossack!"
"OugharagarraaahhHHH: When 'Ow' just won't cut it."
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CAPCOM: We put the "No" in Innovation.

Zane Truesdale
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Posted on September 14, 2015 at 23:14:17 [Post link]
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"So he doesn't like dragons... ha. This'll be fun when we have our taking of their baron. Keep it going. Who knows, we might just be helping her."

"Lord, our eyes found an imprisoned royalty upstairs. We suspect that this is what our newcomer is after."

Sin thought for a bit. Helping her would indeed draw more attention away from them...

"Get one of our eyes to help her then."

Only visible to Lajag's mind, an eye made an appearance and urged a part of her brain to pay attention to it. It spoke to her mind... We must help you. We may have found what you seek. It is upstairs.

It's words were simple, and because it is but a controlled being, it's signals insisted that it was not there to harm her.
It showed, again only visible to Lajag's eyes, a translucent nonphysical trail of purple smoke, leading to the Baron's "Prize."

Ajax
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Posted on September 16, 2015 at 7:14:00 [Post link]
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Tsuminar

Tsuminar Proper




Larent tensed slightly, his smile not so much disappearing as solidifying. Annoyance coursing through his body. He took a calming breath, not even trying to hide the tell-tale signs of his emotions, subdued though they were. "Next time, maybe less grandstanding, more cooperation. For your bluster, you need me. Like I need you." He uttered with a cold tone.

____


Great Ocean




"Oh, keep dreaming, sweetie." Lace replied with an utterly disarming grin. "I know my way around the game fair well." Her tone caught with emotion for a few seconds before she winked. "We got a friend who knows more than we ever will, looking to join up with her, if we can. Otherwise, just a vacation from our day jobs."

Syn merely grunted, running a dusty hand along the cool metal of a chair and standing next to it, watching the door and Gigri with both equal measure and hints of disdain.

____


Kemei


The Roost



Var nearly went bug-eyed. Despite the chaos that seemed to randomly be exploding in various mishaps around him. Bottles tossed without apparent aid, confused grunts and glares from his men. Despite the fact that something was apparently here to kill him. . . She thought he wanted to "see" a dragon again?

"Hells Bells, woman." He snarled, "I fought the damned dragons."

The woman that had sat at his feet stood up, eyes terrified as she looked around, expecting their invisible attacker, this--assassin, to come forward at any second. "Var--" she squeaked out fearfully.

Ribitta
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Posted on October 3, 2015 at 21:06:39 [Post link]
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Without a second thought, Orup heeled the side of his mount and ushered a loud ‘Hyah!’ as the thing spring into action, hurtling itself across the courtyards. Another day, he would have liked to stay here and watch this entire place burn to the ground, but his revenge would have to be satisfied with the damage already done. Bess bowled through anything in front of them, and moments later they were smashing through the outer wall, carving a path of their own into the jungle again. The destruction and carnage behind them, they fled the building inferno.

It was not until they had managed to clear the tree-line and then some before Orup allowed them to slow, easing Bess’s stride gently. As they slowed, the alchemist couldn’t help but bark a laugh at the whole thing, sliding off the toad and slapping its hide in celebration. “Hah! Well, I’d call that a win, wouldn’t you say, m’boy?”

---

Ginther’s explanations proved to bridge a gab for John, now with a little more context for the messages stored in this suit of armor. He had made his mind up to continue reading and sorting through them while he watched over the room, hoping to find something useful in the mess. For as quickly as he got through them, though, more continued to pile in, but a quick glance at those revealed they were mostly useless. Most of it was reports from places all around the world, apparently--places he knew next to nothing about. Hearing about rebellions, loose monsters, and player killings didn’t do them much good, all the way up here.

The hours slipped by, and he soon identified the clock on the display his cowl gave him—it was useful. Back in Thimbelatch, they had time pieces, but they were rare and not particularly sturdy; you relied on other things, beyond the Wall. After four hours of watching, he decided to wake up his companion, looking for some sleep for himself.

---

Elle’n felt a flash of annoyance over Shepard’s tone, but she smothered it quickly. She had known from the beginning of this whole thing that she’d have to make concessions, but if this wasn’t going to work, she needed to find out sooner rather than later, so she decided to be direct with him.

“I don’t need a King, Shepard, I need a Bishop. If you don’t like that, you can find some other basket to put your eggs in and leave me in peace. I’ll end Stamaria, and I’ll put you at the top if that’s where you want to be, but if you want to play this game with me, you play it by my rules.” Take it or leave it, she added silently.

---

Gigri grimaced a little at their sardonic reply, wondering who he had just hopped in bed with. Granted, if he had been led into a bad bargain himself, he probably wouldn’t have been too happy either; that said, though, they were here now, and he was going to make the most of it. If it didn’t work out then whatever, but he wasn’t about to detour just to drop off the freeloaders.

“Well then, if you’re such veterans, let me ask you this. Are you familiar with the Arcanum Relics?”

---

Lajag tensed up. This fool of a Baron was being absolutely unhelpful, and then suddenly there was a voice within her head. Was it what she had sensed? She had some experience with the incorporeal, and she knew enough not to inherently trust it. For all she knew, this specter was pushing her into some trap made by the Baron, but she had no way of knowing that. Had this been a mistake after all?

“It’s here already,” she said, trying to think on her feet. “And it’s going after whatever it is you have locked away upstairs.”

RisingDragon
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Posted on October 4, 2015 at 3:21:46 [Post link]
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Rua slipped down the side of the giant toad and rested on his heels, hunched over as the last of the feral potion bled out of his system. Beside him, Relayia was rapidly shrinking in a disconcerting manner, even though the creature didn't show any signs of distress. "Let's never do that again," Rua panted. Straightening up, he put his hands on the hilt of his sheathed blade. "I'm not looking forward to the retribution."

There was no way what he just did would go unnoticed by Varakon-Ur or Kasdim-Ur. He definitely had a target painted on his back now, and he was sure E.P. would have some choice dialogue for him tonight. "We better get headed out of here. I still have another place to check this week."

===The Lodge===


Truth be told, Atalanta hadn't gotten much rest out of her sleep. Too many uncomfortable revelations in one day, causing her to run circles in her mind like a demented hamster on a wheel. She tried not to let it show to John when he woke her, mumbling a thanks as she roused herself to full alertness to take her watch.

Player killings and player prophecies, company compromises and monsters loosed. At the heart of it all, the seven Arcanum Relics that not a single person had been able to find. Just how crazy was it going to be when they reached the end of the rabbit hole? She hoped Victor found some damn good info, because this was looking to be the start of a long and miserable bounty.


"Why do you care that I care that you care enough to care that I care for caring?" "Conversation isn't your strong point, is it?"
"I worship the supreme comrade Cossack!"
"OugharagarraaahhHHH: When 'Ow' just won't cut it."
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CAPCOM: We put the "No" in Innovation.

Ajax
Lil' metool


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Posted on October 7, 2015 at 2:00:12 [Post link]
Quote

Tsuminar

Tsuminar Proper



He heard her words, and took several moments to ponder them before nodding to her. "I'd wish you good luck, but that would bely the nature of our relationship." He finally said with a soft tone. Nodding his head once to her in the barest gesture of politeness before pulling away from her and angling off into the crowd, intending to disappear into it.

Partners he'd need. But it would seem Elle'n was not to be one of them. A waste of resources and a good cover, but a valuable lesson, at least. His annoyance flexed through his body, fist clinching. He'd picked the wrong partner, again. Hopefully the third time would be the charm.

____


Great Ocean




Lace blinked, unable to hide her knowledge of the items. "That's the---wossoname things. Legendary items? Heard a rumor the Theta players think the damn things will make them unstuck, or something." She hazarded with a lopsided smile. He didn't seem terribly comfortable with them, so hopefully she could keep the fact that they were Theta's a secret, just a bit longer.

Syn was used to living dangerously, but Syn also was from a world where guns were the final answer to every violent problem. Here, a literal dragon could eat them, and laugh all the way home while they woke up decidedly dead back in their apartment. She needed more time to get Syn accustomed to the game, get her some good guns and try to stay safe long enough for the mess to be fixed.

____


Kemei

The Roost




Var balked at her words. An almost comical expression of confusion overcoming his features. "That--'s .. .impossible." He stammered finally. The Logical part of his brain made a valiant effort to overcome the part that was terrified some monster from Allondell had decided he and his were next on the menu.

"She's a prisoner we took in a daring raid." He snapped defiantly. "Daughter to one of the less---robber-ish Barons of the cities to the north. She will fetch a handsome reward from her parents." Var realized belatedly that in the midst of the crazy, unsure happenings, he'd slipped into sales-mode. Stars and dragons above, he'd actually said "daring". The "raid" had been about as un-daring as was humanly possible, come to think of it.

And there, something in his brow tensed. It should have been daring, right? He felt like he'd done that raid a thousand times . . . Storming down upon the convoy, talking up a storm and convincing them that living and running to their master was better than dying. He'd take the girl captive either way . . . But no, that hadn't happened, had it? There hadn't been a fight, just confusion. All that flame, all the dead . . .

He shook his head, eyes darting back to her. "Why the hell would someone from Allondell want her? We only just kidnap---uh-- captured her a week ago."

Edited by Ajax on October 7, 2015 at 3:00:41

Edited by Ajax on October 9, 2015 at 6:22:14

Zane Truesdale
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Posted on October 8, 2015 at 14:51:06 [Post link]
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Sin chuckled. The Baron's exclamations were starting to get amusing. However, the girl is smart... but is she smart enough? She better find a way to prove her point quickly, or she may even find herself being accused for all the ruckus Sin has caused.

We will see what happens in the end...

Ribitta
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Posted on October 21, 2015 at 2:55:35 [Post link]
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Orup moved around the side of the enormous amphibian, patting it down and checking for injuries. It was a ridiculous task, of course; Bess's hide in its current state was tougher than granite, and he was quite proud of the finished product. When Rua spoke about continuing, though, he had to pause, thinking it over.

"Are you intent to go straight there, then? Or are you heading back to the city first?" he asked, mulling over his own options. "Don't take this the wrong way, m'boy, but I don't know that I can see this through to the end. I stayed here long enough to rescue Bess, but I'm no warrior like yourself. I'm long overdue to find a safe place and hunker down while this all blows over."

---

The messages ran together, one after another, and John let the time slip by in a blur. He had figured out how to delete things and how to sort things, so he was finally managing to get the hang of this system. When it was Atalanta's turn to take the post, though, he was more than happy to shed his armor down to the light, under-suit and crawl into bed. Sleep came almost instantly for the tired man.

---

Elle'n blinked at Shepard's response, stopping in the middle of the crowd as he turned tail and vanished on her. He had simply been the hand that she had been dealt, but she thought for certain he wouldn't let his pride defeat him so easily. It had been a gross miscalculation, and it genuinely frustrated her. Who would be her next monitor--the goon that Pius sent after her next? She didn't like having to think about that, but she also couldn't let Shepard just walk away.

Opening her private messenger, she addressed it to Pius, her old boss, and attached the audio file from the roof a few days before. He could sort through that on his own just fine and if he wanted more, he'd have to come asking. Maybe Shepard wasn't going to be on her team after all, but he certainly wouldn't be on Stamaria's.

---

Gigri enjoyed the brief moment of recognition on their faces, pleased to see something there besides just guarded malice. Despite how powerful these relics were, it didn't necessarily make them common knowledge.

"I'm going to Valtheran to find one of them," he explained. "I'll let you off when we get there, and I'll get you your weapons there too. I'll admit I didn't think you'd follow me all the way to the ship, but I'm a man of my word."

---

Lajag was growing more and more impatient by the second. This baron was a complete fool, and she couldn't believe she had wasted so much time already. The longer she stood here, the more she realized he would never move on his own--he wasn't made for that. How silly of her.

"Take me to her," she requested directly, done with playing games. If he decided to attack for her impudence, she'd burn this whole place down and be done with it.

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Posted on October 21, 2015 at 4:04:53 [Post link]
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Rua grimaced. "I've actually got no reason to return to Rogueport yet, and I really do need to check out that other ruin. Bess there should keep you safe, but... well, do you think it's actually safe yet in Rogueport?" Rua asked, a little concerned. "There was that big explosion there when we met."

===The Lodge===


Atalanta envied her companion's exhaustion, as the man slipped into what looked like a dreamless sleep. As she went about re-equipping her gear, she prepared herself for a long, boring night. She didn't have some thousand-odd messages to sift through to pass the time, after all.

Luckily she was used to sleepless nights. God knows Jenny had given her enough of them.


"Why do you care that I care that you care enough to care that I care for caring?" "Conversation isn't your strong point, is it?"
"I worship the supreme comrade Cossack!"
"OugharagarraaahhHHH: When 'Ow' just won't cut it."
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CAPCOM: We put the "No" in Innovation.

Ajax
Lil' metool


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Posted on October 23, 2015 at 5:43:32 [Post link]
Quote

Tsuminar

Tsuminar Proper




Several days after he'd left Elle'n in the crowd, Larent knew his time in Stamarian intelligence was done. Fortunately the day after he'd left her had been a busy one indeed. His network, for what it was, was buried and quiet. One would have to look very hard to even realize he'd been building up one.

He looked around his dull apartment with a frustrated air. She would be displeased with his progress. He knew that for sure. But--every failure was an opportunity. They hadn't killed him yet, hadn't even tried. Their mistake.

A knock came at his door. That would be them, just on time.

Ten minutes later, Larent Shepard's apartment exploded. Three Stamarian intelligence officers were incinerated in the blast, the two apartments adjacent to his were leveled as well as the one above. Multiple injuries were reported, and the shattered remains of Larent's corpse were positively identified by the Stamarian Tower's resident coroner.

Besides that, it was a pretty average day in Tsuminar.

____


Great Ocean



"If you were a man of your word, you'd have not double-crossed us." Syn stated without emotion. Watching him with cold eyes.

Lace gave a pleasant smile. "But we do so appreciate the lift to Valtheran."

____


Kemei


The Roost


Var gave the enchantress an exasperated look. "Everyone---Calm down and snap out of it. Double the watch on the walls and do a sweep of the castle." He barked, his orders coming out like a drill-sergeant's. His eyes snapped back to Lajag. "Start making sense. Short version. Why do you care about a Robber Baron and his men?"

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Posted on October 23, 2015 at 15:32:06 [Post link]
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Kemei
________

There it is... that one question to start the downward spiral on the woman's plans.

"You'll have to be an incredible liar if they start to prod you further little girl..."

Ribitta
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Posted on November 27, 2015 at 1:37:09 [Post link]
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"I am intent," Orup replied firmly. "I can handle myself in Rogueport. They're a villainous, lecherous crowd, but if you have something that they want and they can't steal it--well, I'll be safe." It was true that in the commotion things were likely much more dangerous, but it would be a couple of days since those events by the time he got back there. It was hardly the first time the city had blown itself up, and he was sure it wouldn't be the last.

"Listen, though," he continued, reaching to his pack and pulling out a rolled up bundle of large parchment. "I found this down below. These are maps--three of them. One of this region of Cher Plek, giving the location of the other two temples, and the others are details of the layouts themselves. Maybe this was meant as a quest, way back in the day, but either way it should be handy for you. It's the best I can help you, I'm afraid."

---

John didn't sleep so long as he had allotted, but it was sleep nonetheless, and a few hours later he was rising to his feet. It had been a dreamless few hours, but it had cleared his mind, and the weight of all of yesterday was finally beginning to press on him. This place--a game? Not the true world? He suspected he would be in complete shock if not for the part of him that said it had to be true. It explained everything, even if it required countless new questions.

He had had time to think about some of those questions, though, and he spoke to his companion as he moved to don his armor again. "Whatever we're doing up here, I think the quicker we get it done, the better," he said. It was an obvious thing to say, but he meant it a little more deeply than that. "This could turn into a wild goose chase if this thing we're chasing is already too far gone. If we can't find him--or even after we do--I think we need to get to this place called 'the Core'. Have you ever been there?"

---

Gigri scowled at the two women, displeased that one of them refused to let this go. "Hey, I said I'd get you them, didn't I? You can be mad at me all you want, but it's not gunna get you there any faster." But fast was a relative term, actually. For a sailor, a fast trip to Valtheran meant a few days. In this ship, though? They'd be there in a few hours. He'd risked everything for this ship, and so far it had paid off.

"Your friend, though," he prodded further, going back to something one of them had said a few minutes ago. "What's their allegiance? I'm not going to have Stamarians on my tail looking for you, am I?"

---

Lajag grimaced distastefully at the question, her impatience just about to peak. Robber Baron--what a fool. One more inane question, one more petty stalling act, and she would teach him a permanent lesson. Chaos was brimming, just on the edge of boiling over, and she was stuck answer his silly questions.

"There is a pattern," she said forcefully--and truthfully. "It keeps this universe in one piece, it stops the world from falling apart. It binds everything, and its operation is paramount to our survival. And here it is wearing thin--something is broken. I've come to find out what. I was not lying when I warned of attack, but it is not the kind that I can articulate to you with so little time. Now--the girl?"

RisingDragon
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Posted on November 28, 2015 at 1:36:43 [Post link]
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"Ah, thanks," Rua said, caught by surprise by the gift Mepple was giving him. He took the scroll in both hands and cradled it against he shoulder. "I'll take any help I can get, really. Well, if you think you'll be okay--" he spared a glance at Bess, who stared back at him as unimpressed as ever--"then I guess we'll part ways here. Do you have a shop somewhere? Maybe I'll stop by sometime for supplies."

===The Lodge===


"I've heard of it," Atalanta said slowly, giving the man a curious glance as she made sure she had all her belongings in order. "But I've never been there. Hell, I haven't met anyone who has. I'm not even sure where to begin on figuring out how to get there. Why?"


"Why do you care that I care that you care enough to care that I care for caring?" "Conversation isn't your strong point, is it?"
"I worship the supreme comrade Cossack!"
"OugharagarraaahhHHH: When 'Ow' just won't cut it."
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Posted on December 1, 2015 at 3:47:46 [Post link]
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With a chuckle, the heavyset man only shook his head, reaching into his pack for the cloak he'd worn on their first encounter. "Not these days, m'boy. The only shop I keep is the one I can keep on my back. This world's too small to stay cooped up in some little Minervum hut, I reckon." Donning the cloak, the illusion on the thing took shape at once, and the man's height suddenly seemed to fit his weight.

Issuing a grunt, Orup pulled himself up onto the back of his enormous pet without too much trouble, turning to face his soon-to-be ex-companion one last time. "There's something I have to look into in Kemei, I'm afraid," he continued, "though hopefully it won't be nearly so insidious as this place. At least it's mostly open, there." He glanced around at the trees with a touch of discomfort. "Well, good luck, my boy. Teach those liches a lesson for me, will ya?"

---

John sighed and shrugged, clamping more pieces of his armor into place as he thought. "I spent most of the night reading more messages, and it came up more times than I'd care to count," he replied, in answer to her question. "It seems like where I'm supposed to be--like I've been there before--but it doesn't seem like an easy journey." He paused for a moment, strapping in the last piece and putting the cowl back over his head. The symbols were becoming second nature already.

"Maybe if we run into Ginther again, I can ask her. Are you ready?"

Ajax
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Posted on December 1, 2015 at 4:38:30 [Post link]
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Great Ocean


Syn's brow furrowed as she gave that thought. Did Bekka have any actual allegiances? --Not that she knew of. But then, Syn was first to admit she knew nothing of this game or her comrade's stances in it. Lace, however, ever her personable self, merely shook her head. "No specific allegiances. We're all sort of part-timers in this game. Just looking for a bit of harmless fun."

She gave him a quizzical look of her own. "But you . . . pissed off the local thugs in Tsuminar. What'd you do to them? Your allegiances may be a bit more important, don't you think?" Lace questioned with a wicked smile.

____


Kemei


The Roost



Var gave the sorceress a blank stare. What was she going on about? Patterns . . . keeping the universe together. Stars and dragons, how did one Baron's daughter cause this much trouble? He opened his mouth to speak, hand gripping the crossbow tighter, honestly giving thought to trying his luck with just shooting her.

The other men and women in the hall looked on furtively, not sure quite what was going on. Most gripped their weapons, some whispering amongst themselves. But all waited on Var's word. Except, and he truly wanted to roll his eyes as he heard her dulcet tones. His sister.

The beautiful woman who'd been at his leg when Lajag had entered the hall. Stood and looked at Var. "Var, maybe we should do what she says." Brown hair cascading down to just below her shoulders, she was radiating, in the firelight. The dress she wore was torn strategically to reveal more of her skin, of a matching color to Var's outfit. Soft brown eyes looked to Lajag as the woman continued. "We'll show you the girl. But she's to fetch a sizeable price when her parents realize we have her. That money will feed us for six months." She looked around at the gathered denizens of the castle, her expression worried. "But if you think she's bringing death to our heads, starvation's preferable to us all dying."

Var gritted his teeth. She always did this. Not that he particularly minded most of the time. But bloody hell, it made him look a total idiot to the guests they had to try and fool. But he couldn't very well say nay now, could he? He lowered the crossbow just slightly, "Fine, we'll show you the girl. Try to take her, and I will shoot you very dead." He nodded towards a doorway to his right, "Up that way."

____


Valtheran


Game-World Research Station 6




"Oh give me a break."

Joe glanced over to his wife's desk even as she banged her head gently against the cold surface of the wall next to her.

"What's up?" He questioned, pausing his test-simulation.

Gill glared at her own workscreen. "The Baron quest kicked off, apparently. But--something's wrong with it. No players triggered it."

Joe frowned at that, his brain starting to make the dreadful connections. "That sounds sort of like what happened with the water dragon." He hazarded. The Kemei dragon content was supposed to have started downloading with the Theta update. But--they would have put a stop to that, wouldn't they? The groundwork pieces were there for the next Kemei story-arc. But most of it hadn't been playtested fully.

Gill nodded glumly. "The entire quest isn't firing right, either. Var and his guys didn't do their usual talking routine. The convoy was torched before they even got there. But I can't figure out which faction would do that. None of them are supposed to be near that road. He found the baron's daughter in the middle of the wreckage, figured out who she was and thought to make a quick buck with his usual scheme. Now--I'm not sure what the hell is going on in the Roost."

With a few quick swipes of his hand, Joe copied her workscreen to his own, looking over the code, frowning deeper and deeper as he did. It was the Theta Patch data, but--something was wrong with it. "Another one of Margrid's quests going crazy." He whispered, half to himself. "Wish we could talk to her."

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Posted on December 1, 2015 at 5:56:41 [Post link]
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Rua smiled and gave a sardonic shake of his head, then lifted up his hand to salute the alchemist. "Will do, old man," he said. "Here's to hoping Kemei's more hospitable than this hellhole."

With one last nod, Relayia alighting on his shoulder, Rua parted from Orup Mepple and Bess. Their last sighting of the swordsman was of him talking amicably to the creature on his shoulder while he held a digital map from his game menu off to the side, slipping off through the foliage.

===The Lodge===


"Yeah, I'm good to go," Atalanta told her companion, tapping the folded-up blaster hanging from her hip underneath her ragged cloak. "Lets go freeze our asses out there. I doubt the monsters care for frozen food."


"Why do you care that I care that you care enough to care that I care for caring?" "Conversation isn't your strong point, is it?"
"I worship the supreme comrade Cossack!"
"OugharagarraaahhHHH: When 'Ow' just won't cut it."
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CAPCOM: We put the "No" in Innovation.

Zane Truesdale
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Posted on December 8, 2015 at 17:59:01 [Post link]
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-Kemei-

Interesting... so she knows of my nature.

Lord Sin thought to himself. Being the son of the Reality God had it's vibes, more specifically that he's more fit to twist and reshape Reality than to hold it together. This girl must have sharp senses to be able to study his power to that point.

 

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