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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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Last time, on TeeGee Harem Knights:


>Wiki here: http://1d4chan.org/wiki/Harem_Knights

So what ya doing on your day off?
Besides character's, what should we update for the wiki? Everything but the links at the bottom are all horribly outdated.
Chores. Probably go to the hospital to see a friend. I just got out of my first class anyway. I'll probably post the first part to something Jim and I were working on. Savior's Day shopping with a short cameo by the Witch.
Sounds interesting
Shouldnt it be Hermie Knights now?
Mostly just characters. I'm not sure there's been much going on as of late.
Not much at all.
Makes me think we need someone like the orc attack in 4AA to start things up again. Nothing major has happened in a long ass time.

Maybe the mirtherran no subhuman policy comes into effect or something?
agreed, we need some world shaking. say around 11-14 AA? give everyone plenty of time to set their stuff up and get TeeGee grown
Even 11AA seems a little too long, I would think 8-9AA at the latest, since most people are writing around 6AA ish atm, and we don't want to get too old between events.
There are several places that could be explored. First, the Elvish kingdoms. Harbinger brought up a few things, but he was pretty vague. Likewise, Serrid hasn't been explored much aside from the markets.

Another idea I just had is a resistance in Mirthterrah. There's a group of oppressed commoners who want to be free from their rulers, but they couldn't do much without a benefactor. This benefactor is a group of people from the Free Kindgoms* who just want to carve Mirthterrah up for themselves.

Of course, not many people here can (or want to) write politics. Regardless, there's a lot we could expand on.

*Now that I think about it, we haven't explored much there, either.
Most of my stuff is AA 11 onwards, but then again I also didn't put a date on Anor Londo either.
I think you might be the outlier here though, what with going as far as your death with grown up children if i'm not mistaking you for someone else.

I don't think anyone else has gone anywhere near that far into the timeline.
I did a brief one shot with grandkids. But it was very very brief
If I can make requests, I'd like to see the elves taken down a notch. Perhaps we can ally with the dwarves who are already at war with them.
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I can probably think of something about those oppressed commoners.... oh yes.
Also, we need to establish what tech/magic we do and don't have at what points in time. Our access to aluminum gives us an advantage, since it's basically lower-quality mithril. Are we exporting the stuff? I imagine it'd bring in a lot of cash, but I can see why we might want to keep it to ourselves.

Concerning defensive measures, we do have a few railguns. The COCK OF JUSTICE isn't an option, because it's designed with a very specific projectile in mind. Modifying the weapon (as fowl as it is) would give poor results, like most anything resulting from drunken genius.

Speaking of drunken genius, what tech has come out of our relationship with the dwarves? Really, I don't think anyone besides Thai's done much with them.

Runic computers are a possibility, but since we can't efficiently print runic circuitry (yet) computers will be limited in use. They could trigger more traditional runes, however. Which rune is triggered depends on the output. Come to think of it, if we can make something turn this way it could be used for automatic gates.

We also have engine-powered vehicles, done via enchanted mechanisms. We can also make them hover, allowing for much greater speeds across varying terrain. (Assuming the driver is competent in its use, of course.) Potential uses are war vehicles, merchant convoys, paramedics, and probably at least one other thing I haven't thought of. Add some speakers while you're at it; I want to see a Bluesmobile.

On the subject of speakers, Olin's Audiobooks are pretty much devices that can record and play back sound. They don't sound too good, but could have much better quality if other materials were used.

That's all I have for now.
We can export the aluminum so long as we do it in small amounts, to avoid flooding the market. Too quickly, and it will probably lose value.
I'd imagine the Dwarves would give us access to more mineral supplies and hopefully, some more skilled smiths would journey to Waifu Town.
Making a radio should be simple enough. If we stick with AM frequencies, we could make Crystal Radios and only need to power the radio tower. This could be useful for early warning systems (weather/attack), entertainment, and news of course. Speaker quality will probably increase not long after that due to a desire for better sound.

We have engines, therefore we have motors, right? We could use that to compress gases (Natural Gas, Oxygen, air) easily for various purposes (Fuel, Medicine, visiting mermaids).
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>we do have a few railguns
and if you make them look good enough we could mount them on our dragons. that's right, panzer waifu saga
Runes are like circuits. Combine enough and the skys the limit. Also Jim and Lilly make a runic tablet some time around the end of 6AA. It was to run the god dong.
You sir win all the internets.
Forgot use gold ink for better sound.

Good rune material: gold, crystal, soapstone, ivory, dragon scales.
I'm sorry, I've missed a few threads and what the fuck is this?
i believe it was a cannon that shot roosters
we actually came up with this a long time ago, i remember scouring youtube for the right star ocean 3 clip to get that pic

Or a cannon that fires Roosters based off a piece of magical high heels.
Is Deep Rot a thing yet?
Because that has to be a thing.
Soon. But no. Anyone whoes read a certain book series as well as all my stories might see a plot coming way down the line
Unfortunately, in order for railguns to work, we'd need a grounded circuit. I don't think we'd be able to do that in the air. Plus the tremendous amount of voltage necessary would require either lightning spells or a grounded system of capacitors, neither of which is practical nor safe to put on the back of a dragon.

A chicken launcher created in a drunken haze.
>in order for railguns to work, we'd need a grounded circuit. I don't think we'd be able to do that in the air.
>Plus the tremendous amount of voltage necessary would require either lightning spells or a grounded system of capacitors
i specialize in lightning magic, the reason being that i wanted to be able to railgun shit, which i can do (even if i'm a horrible shot)
No need to ground it. Complete circuits can be made without grounds.
Well if you got fancy you could ground it to yourself or do as fluffy says.
I don't understand exactly what grounding is (or electricity in general). Could you elaborate as to why not?
Instead of grounding and wasting all the excess energy, you could recycle it.

When you ground something, you use the ground to complete the circuit. It's usually done in things that may be hit with power surges, it protects the circuits from being fried.
Exactly. He was hit by lightning and fine with it. Don't waste, recycle.Old man powers ACTIVATE; Don't they teach ya whippersnappers anything in school these days.
>Don't they teach ya whippersnappers anything in school these days.
nothing useful
I learned everything from Wikipedia.
And I know how to build a railgun using parts from a lawn mower, or any ICE.
see that's the stuff they should be teaching in school.
Dangnabit, back in my day, We went to school, AND LEARNED. Now your all to busy drinking your frufue girly cum you call coffee and textin on your cellulars. And Sexting all the sexting. back in my day porn was with pictures and they weren't this 1080p nonsense all you be going on about.
>drinking modern "coffee"
nope, don't like the taste of the stuff and can't afford it. homemade on the other hand...
requires a cellphone and friends
requires a cellphone and girlfriends, so even less likely
>going to school and learning
i actually laughed at that, and far harder than i should have
I went to school and learned how to identify idiocy in the educational system. I also went to school in order to teach the classes I went to.
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bumping with what happens when you get a daughter, human or not
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So cute!
>Cute thing
>Responds with sexed up little kid
Cool pedophilia bro!
It pulls at my heart strings. As does this. >>21144078


If you think that's sexed up don't ever watch any dance recitals with little girls. 'Specially not any of the ones they show on tv.
Those beauty pageant things? So horrifying. Another reason why I never watch tv.
Those also. Flipin channels old school. What the fuck thats the littlest midget hooker I've ever seen. No wait, thats a toddler. I think I'm blocking TLC. The only thing I learn there is how much I hate people.

And I lol'ed far harder at you post than I should have.
Mothers compete to see who can make the best cheap hooker.
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bumping with pandacat
Is this related in any way to Kamen Rider?
pandacat and kamen rider are both champions of justice
Same show though?
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no, but pandacat is so awesome he could easily qualify as a kamen rider
It's Kamen Rider Stronger. (My favorite is still OOO, though. That show had fantastic villains.)
Alright, but which show is Panda-cat from? I need to know for... science. Yes.
hanamaru kindergarten
gainax's best show
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Speaking of GAINAX, fun fact. Kamen Rider Fourze had the same director as Gurren Lagann.
World shaking?


Do you Really want to hear what's cooking in the back of my mind?
If it's from you, it's probably quite something. I am anticipate.

If you need someone to bounce ideas off of though, feel free to use me. As usual, I can be reached via either email or Steam.

Let's see.

Slaves. Freeing them is well and good.
Where would they go, what would they do, who would feed them, house them...teach them?
What. Would. They. Turn...into?

Elves. The devious ones. Slighted, grudge-holding, "immortal", elves. With long memories and the faces of their foes ingrained. They don't need to strike at you...how's the kids, by the way?

Kasai knows the next one. I won't spoil it by letting it out early...(which is different from the one below)

Stars. Watch them shine, watch them twinkle. Watch them count down the years to some cosmic clock, and tick and tock with anticipation.
Long lived beings need long lived clocks, and what better to set your watch to?
...what better to set your wars to?
There, hope those were vague enough to get the ol' neurons kicking.

Still finishing off the Squids, and now I have to go picture hunting.
Oh my. This will be quite something.

Now get to writing! (I should as well, really. I think I have a thing or two on the back burner.)


I'll just shut up.

The WEST awaits
wait what do I know?

Fuck, I can't remember what I had for dinner last night let alone riddles of the Clover.
>Slaves. Freeing them is well and good.

>Where would they go, what would they do, who would feed them, house them...teach them?

I did most of those actually, basically running a social security program for freed slaves.

Well it be nice to Mention IT!

There goes Scenario 4: Rise of Spartacus Khan.

Or not.

Plan B! Inspiration goes wrong!
And suddenly, Ninjas everywhere.
...elaborate, please.
There are always ninjas. Especially when you least expect them.
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Right, oni then. I write now.
Let's see, off the top of my head:

Order of the blades
Serridian "merchants"
not that Salmon fellow down the road
not that young bachelor or their missing friend
and not that "demi-god"

Huh, I wondered how that was going.
Oni (myth): gets drunk, honest, humanitarian

I might start posting up the Squids. But first, picture hunt!
We could always use the slaves to hunt down the slave takers.
I'll just tally up and, egads!

50+ posts!

Clear your posts away gents (and ladies) this is a long one.
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A long one?

That sounds like my Squid story!

Coming up, the thrilling second part to the Illithid's tale!

Deals to follow.
so much for my chem homework
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Go ahead and study, it'll still be around when you're done.

Still have to find the appropriate pics...
We had this argument last night, but we learn more from wikipedia than from school.
School is where we acclimatize ourselves to human insanity, not learn.
They certainly did a horrible job at that.
One thing though.

Due to the...detailed nature of some of the text, should I or shouldn't I spoiler the accompanying pictures?

This is your only warning.

No, its not sexy, its horror, mind - gutter - out.
I'm kinda there for both.
Right, it's too late, for you and my bedtime.

I'll post the story, and the sneaky deals tomorrow.
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The increased difficulty in translating the impressive collection of humming rocks (and non-rocks), as the racial knowledge becomes more esoteric, is that more untranslatable words need to be replaced by [similar]. There is further difficulty, given their continuing exposure to Clover Syndrome, in that some text grows more archaic and obscure.

{A chunk of lava, cold to the touch. It speaks of resurgence}

//Data Storage Activated//

-unk, tunk.

This section’s on!

(Distant confirmation)


Damage reports first.

The ritual would have succeeded in bringing the Island underground, had the circle not been broken. We also miscalculated. Instead of [Pulling] from the outside inwards, we had attempted to [Pull] at the centre. That is a lesson the [Family] won’t soon forget, a lesson spelt in [gigatonnes] of molten rock and whole plains of poisonous gas.

Many [Nobles] did not escape the disaster, their bodies are lost but can be regrown from the pools in time. However, the same cannot be said for their mindscans. [Centrals], powerful conduits of energy and stores of knowledge, cannot move unaided. A good majority of Elder Quarter brainpower has been lost, and the number of [mind-selves] lost is still being tallied. Hence the sudden reliance on the [Data] stones. [Centrals] take time to grow from [Nobles].

The [Family] will recover. Our numbers need replenishing. A more…desperate method is needed. We need the [Pillars].
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{A piece of crabshell, inscribed with badges of honour. It speaks of exile}

The [Warriors] are hardy; those that weren’t cooked punched their way out of the rock. The [Workers] were sent away before the [Ritual] began, so both can still replenish their numbers naturally via procreative activities. New [Nobles] only need [Hats], but have to be recruited from existing [Family].

That is the first problem that needs addressing. The second is the [Noble], no, human that fled. To the [Family]’s knowledge, no mortal of these realms [Adopted] had shown such resistance. The [Family] have been trees, crystals, steel, large masses of fur and muscle, but this is the first immunity shown in this [Reality]. This (sounds of flipping paper) Mr Alhalson of the Sands needs to be investigated.


Well that was quick.
>Must be the “streamlining” that’s all the rage on the surface.
>Lay it on us, think tank!


Right, let’s start the Maw up again.
>Finding an exiled countryman of Alhalson shouldn’t be too difficult.
>What are the odds again? One in ten thousand?


>Who’s the lucky volunteer?


“Who’s that, then?”

“Wasn’t me, I was dead”

…It’s me, isn’t it.
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{A lens of obsidian. It makes minds dull}


“He secretly stole the amber tokens from the barrel”
>And then ate them.
>They react funny to glands.
>Among other things, the amber cut him off from our [Songs]


Is that why I’m standing in a spawn pool full of amber?
>And what’s with all the [Seeds]?

“It helps to be prepared!”



Darkness. Power.


[Cast Out the Faithful Son]

Arcs of light and shadow coursed throughout their body, organs forming and shifting, fluids burning and leaking from every pore. The [Exile] fell to ground, eyes glowing with intravenous amber, deafened to the [Family].


Some [Nobles] and [Workers] step forward, bearing caskets of supplies.

“We also made you these lenses from the black glass of Obsidos, to cover up your eyes.”
>Don’t stare, it’ll break the illusion.
>And the surface is really, really bright.


“Stay safe!”

The newly formed [Exile] made their way out from the Underdark, waved off by the [Family] that had arms, their [Songs] opening up the ways to the surface.
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{A seashell, with a carving of a galleon. It drives men to the sea}

Waves crash among high seas, the men and women that brave it have more to fear than weather and wake. For no matter what cargo they keep, be it spice, or silk, or slaves from distant lands, any who take the ocean paths alike can tell you, fear the pirates.

A wise sailor will steer the safe currents, and the traveled can spin the Maw to their advantage. But any pirate worth the salt in their blood will be more than the equal of a ship crewed by the fearful and meek. The greatest pirates command fleets, holdings, titles taken in battle. The Salt Lords of the Seas, pirates among peers, none more fabled than Captain Dreadbeard of the Brine.

I was a mere slave when I first met the Captain. His offer was generous, service or sovereignty. The slave ships that ran afoul of him would no longer peddle their flesh; those freed would join his crew or take control of their captor’s ships to their own fates.

His crew was proof of his generosity, among them was beastmen of canine and feline, disgraced elven blades, and the odd dwarf. My posting drew no judgment, but respect had to be earned among the rough, and I was but a cabin boy.
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{A portrait of a captain, set in pearl. The angles are inhuman}

The captain kept to his quarters during most of the voyages, but was such a sight when he appeared. A great coiling beard, black eyes that you couldn’t help but notice, a coat of seafoam filigree, and a hermit crab perched on his shoulder. He moved with such swagger it was as if he threw his whole body into his steps and his voice boomed above storm and waves.

I remember a time when we were attacked by other pirates, hoping to cut their teeth on a legend of the seas and earn a name for themselves among the waves. They came with two ships, when our ship, the Grip of Glory, was becalmed. They boarded with grapple and tar, great bows piercing our hull with rope and hook.

They should have brought a fleet.

The crew fought like men possessed, the lapdogs of the sea had no chance against its sharks. Blood flowed freely from their wounds, the sharks and [mermaids?] attracted to the slaughter. When the last of the fools had been mopped up, their bodies were taken below decks for some strange rite.

I met with the Captain, and he was drinking his way through the captured wine. He waved me over to join his musings, untroubled by arrows or daggers.
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{A piece of coral, depicting a storm. There is a shadow in the storm}

“Terrible fighters, these pirates” he said to me, “Each breaking rank to get at me. I swear laddie, wear armour under your clothes and it gives you a reputation for being unkillable”

This was said while he plucked arrows from out of his arms and torso. I politely did not mention the arrows in his head, or how his beard seemed to reach around to remove them.


A mighty storm had brewed, and the captain was in his quarters, placating the sea with fervent music and song. The rest of the crew worked in time to this cacophony, their movements quickened and flowing like water. I was perched in the crows’, but saw a great movement in the rain. It was not a ship, nor was it a rock, but in the shape of a man with the head of a fish.

I roped down to the crew with this news, which gained their attention, so they sent me to the captain’s quarters to tell him myself! I opened the door, and it was filled with such wonders of the sea! Coral sculptures, pearls even the stoutest diver couldn’t pry away, and fish of every colour sealed in tanks.

The captain turned to me from his instrument of pipes and brass.
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{Driftwood, depicting a man and a ship, not to scale. It thrums with conference}

I told the captain of what I had seen striding through the storm, and he only gave no reaction until I had finished my tale of an impossibly tall being that arose from the depths, merely smoking a pipe in rumination. Finally, he spoke:

“So, the family below have need of the family above” he said rhetorically, “Very well, let’s see what the Big Brothers have to offer me.” And with that, he set off into the storm, heading towards the ships prow, unbothered by rocking waves or pelting rain.

I ran to stop him from falling overboard, yet the crew told me “not to worry my pretty head”, for the captain had the doughtiest sea-legs of us all. An indeed, as the ship drew closer to the massive figure in the storm, Captain Dreadbeard was at ease, perched on the very bowsprit.

The captain looked to be in conversation with the sea spirit, but though his mouth was flapping and his voice loud, I couldn’t piece what was said over the roar of the waves. But as the spirit replied, I fell to the decks, clutching my head, blood leaking from burst eardrums. It spoke not sound, but thought, and the last I remember was its form retreating beneath the waves.
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{A small stone carving of a pillar}

I awoke below decks, carried there by a Felim midshipman, who claimed that I fell unconscious after hitting my head during the storm. While it seemed an adequate explanation for my bandaged head, she was evasive when I questioned her about the sea spirit and the captain. Though confined to my bunk until healed, I would not stop my curiosity.

When the rest of the crew had settled for sleep, I crept down to the holds. There had to be something hidden among the forbidden cargo that would give me the answers I wanted.

There were holds filled with spice and preserved food, those were common fare. The deeper holds kept more unusual cargo. The wrapped and embalmed bodies of fallen foemen and crew alike were kept in caskets, but the proportions were off, and some bulged with unknown growth. I crept passed them in silence, as the ship groaned and waves lapped, I swore that some bodies turned to face me, but it was probably a trick of the lamps.

At last, I found it in a section freshly roped off. A great stone pillar, placed on its side, with more hidden in the darkness. It was an enigma how it could’ve reached the deep holdings. The carvings seemed to move, and I felt compelled to approach them.
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{A nautilus shell. It feels like the sensation of worms}

The pillars drew me in. The carvings flickered and moved before my eyes, surface rippling to my presence. I was hypnotized, and with palm outstretched, moved to touch them.

But before I could contact the pillar, a hand shot out from the gloom, clamped around my wrist. A pipe lit up, and a familiar face appeared.

“We wouldn’t want you to lose the hand, och-loch-loch”, the Captain said, puffing on his pipe, no doubt laughing at some inward joke. He had been seated in the holds the entire time, perhaps foreseeing the curiosity of others. “Now off you go, get some rest”

He breathed smoke into my eyes, and that was all I knew. Before falling unconscious, I thought I saw Dreadbeard’s hand flicker into a crab’s claw.


The sun had broken the next day, and all thought of intrigue or mysterious pillars were gone from my head. A good wind had broken out, and the sea blessed us with swift current and good heading. But the captain had different ideas than plunder and piracy, we set for port. When questioned, he told me this.

“We are going to drop off a very important package, one that my family wants delivered very urgently. It’d be best for you to remember the importance of family, och-loch-loch”
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{A piece of burnt wood. It satiates}

Night had fallen on the surface, a man and his horse rested by a fire. A noise attracted his attention, and he called out into the dark.

“Come out stranger, and share my fire. There is no need for secrecy on these roads”

A loping figure responded to this greeting, moving out from brushwork, their gait uneven and their clothes ill-fitting. They appeared instinctively unnatural, yet the traveler soon felt at ease as the stranger approached. Black glass covered their eyes, on oddity in the night.

“I thank your, hospitality”, the stranger said, words intermittent and hesitant “May I, share food and drink with, you?”

The traveler smiled in turn, and gestured a place by the fire, “By all means”

As the stranger sat down, his presence seemed to unnerve the horse, who shied away. The traveler did not notice this, but continued with his plan.

“Strangers are common on the road, but new friends are far and few between. Shall we drink to new friendships and common futures?” he said, producing bottles of rotgut.

“Very well” said the stranger, accepting an open bottle with clammy hand.

Both took a drink, but the traveler was not finished.

“But friends need familiarity! Why not question one another, downing a drink as the price?”

“Very well” said the stranger, nodding along.
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{An empty bottle. It spells truths and lies}

“As host, I will let you begin”, the traveler spoke, grinning behind teeth.

“I question, I drink. What news, of the land?” the stranger gulped down a shot.

The game starts, feeding tales without bound “Dark news from the west, I fear. A conqueror has appeared, sacking many a township, slaughtering men and taking women for his pleasure. He rides under the banner of manhood, giving no mercy to those that scorn his womanly name, and unmanning at his displeasure” the traveler’s mood dimmed, but he continued, downing his own, “But I shall ask no dark questions, why are you alone on these roads?”

The stranger blinked languidly, meting his next words thoughtfully, “I have been cast out by my kin, exiled if you will, to find, and return a wayward son. I hear no songs, and for the first in a long time, I am alone with my thoughts”

Silence drifted into the night, but the exile soon drunk anon “What news of this warlord?”

“That he six, nine, ten foot tall. He has three heads that lie and speak true, he breathes fire and his eyes burn gold. He flies and cleaves castles. He beds ten fair, fresh maidens a night, making each a mother, and sleeps on beds of war spoils. Many tales, all afraid”
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“This sounds all too depressing, let’s get crunk drunk!” the exile waved his drink around.


“…And that’s how the government of the Free Kingdoms and western holds works, last they convened”

The exile bowed his head “Kakistocrats, stratocrats, kleptocrats and autocrats, no wonder they didn’t band against the warlord”


“That’s your question! Down a drink!”


“No, no, the song goes ‘os-gosh-losh-mosh’, then back to the start”

“I don’t see how this keeps marching in time”

“You’ve never seen marching till you’ve seen [Warriors]”


“Yes, eyes are meant, to do that, they’re quite illachrymable”

“You sure your eyes aren’t meant to do that?”

“No questioning in a row! Double drinks!”


Both exile and traveler are sloshed, singing marching songs.


“You said it wrong, ‘nother drink!”


“So that’s how I got this horse” finished the traveler, now heavily inebriated.

“Fascinating”, the [Exile] replied, not believing a word of it.

“Fine then, stranger. You’ve been asking an awful amount about the world, and take to drink well, but where do you come from?”

“It’s actually my turn to question, but I’ll let it pass” the [Exile] was enjoying itself immensely, “Down in the Underdark, spawned and raised, picking through brains spent most of my days. An [Adopted] got loose, the [Family] got scared, I was exiled, to bring back [Recreant] they declared.”
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“What are you then, some sort of mind-reader or fortune-teller?” the traveler sobered up internally, but still kept his movements tipsy.

“Something like that”, the [Exile] admitted. “My family could divine the likely paths the world and its people would take, and could pluck thoughts from people’s minds like fish from water. Usually more trouble than its worth, with what they think half the time”

The traveler kept his guard up.

“My question “traveler”, is why you are keeping up this act for so long?” with this, the [Exile] didn’t drink, but stared straight at the man with eyes of solid amber.

The traveler gave his goofiest smile, “What act?”

“My kinsmen don’t always read minds. Reading people is much easier and less alarming. Stance, setting, voice, presence, they can all speak volumes about people, whether true or false. I had already noticed by your conflicting dress and possessions, namely a horse set for a man not your size, that you are false”, the [Exile]’s amber eyes glinting behind wiry frames.

“Well, that’s interesting to know. Here’s another question from me, when did you realize I was to poison, rob and leave you for dead?” the outed bandit, swigging his drink.

The [Exile] did not falter, but seemed to smile.

“I shall answer with a question of my own. Did you notice me switching our bottles?”
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{A metamorphic rock. It speaks of metamorphosis}

The bottles slipped from his fingers, the bandit scrambled for his supplies, muttering “Where’s the antidote, where’s the antidote!”

The [Exile] stood slowly, muscles moving under its clothes in unnatural ways, as it watched the highwayman scrabble through bottles. “It’s no poison, so no antidote can stop what’s happening in your body, but this will accelerate the process”, and so the [Exile] started drinking again.

The bandit fell to the ground, spooking the horse. His flesh began writhing under his skin, muscles were cramping and compacting, organs shifted and regrew and all he could do was tear at himself and scream.

The [Exile] stepped over to the bandit and sprayed lucent fluid from his head, coating the poor man head to toe. It melted the skin of the man as squamous flesh broke free. The newly made fishman stood up unsteadily.

“Distilled Alcohol” said the [Exile] by way of explanation, “And other bits. Helps clear away the old skin. You took in the [Family] from your drink, and this is your 5-minute explanation. Keep hydrated, stay out of fires and strong sun, yadayada. We have a lot of ground to cover, and the horse won’t fit both”

The [Exile] approached the horse. Its eyes were mad with fear, but something about the stranger, his scent or presence, paralyzed it.
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“Calm down, my little pony. Good horsey, nice horsey, [Family] horsey”, it placated the beast, but with its last word thrust an arm straight into the horse’s chest, rivulets and seams splitting with grey fluid.

The horse screamed and bucked away from the stranger, its body began bulging and graying, hair shedding and hooves splitting. Its muscles appeared to be tearing themselves off the bone, as the horse’s body rebelled against itself, but a change soon came over it, and it split down the middle in a bloody gash.

Sinews and organs freely exposed to air before new flesh and skin grew over them, its muscles reforming and size shifting while bones cracked into place. Soon, there stood two grey stallions, thin and unnatural, pawing at the ground. The bandit-turned-fishman could only gape in this display of impossible evolution.

“Saddle up” the [Exile] turned to the fishman, “We’ve got ground to cover and warlords to track”

Noting the dull, glazed expression on his face, the [Exile] sighed, “Shock, huh? You’ll get over it. Still can’t hear any [Songs], so it doesn’t look like I can [Adopt] my own”

Both amphibians mounted their equine abominations.

“Crooak. Will there be any fish-women?” the fishman finally ventured.

“Os-logosh-logosh~!” the [Exile] chuckled, “Some things never change. Don’t worry, you’ll soon know many a fine fishwife”

And like that, they left.
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{A guardsman badge, embedded in wood. It hums gently}

Audric, Bradshaw and Salmon are seated in a tavern frequented by many guardsmen. Bradshaw is having difficulty breathing, while Audric is looking slightly pale and pisciformous. Salmon is still in his get-up, looking pleased with himself.

I’m telling you, these past months have been the worst.

(Breathes deeply) Frokkin right.

I mean, first the storms ruin the fishing season, then the winter turns the crops bad. Not to mention what that warlord’s been up to down south.

Frokkin barbarians, think they can take the world by force. (Breathes deeply) I hate those frokkers. Frokkin Allison.

Yeah, what kind of man’s name is that? No wonder he’s so livid. D’ya hear what he does to diplomats? Castrates the males and adds the females to his harem, no matter what state they’re in. What a monster, right?

Throughout the entire exchange, Salmon has been calmly waiting for their drinks to arrive.

Look on the bright side, eh? Good thing that those pillars washed up on the beach a while back, or we’d have nothing to look forward to. Now we’ve got festivals, prayer chants, group meets discussing it.

Frok yeah. (Inhales). I frokkin love that thing. Frokkin pillars’re great.

Salmon burbles in agreement, as the serving girl makes her way over.
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Yeah, it’s been a real sign of fortune, bringing fish in the morning and keeping bandits out at night. We dragged one in the other day, and you know what he said? Said they sang in his sleep.

What I wouldn’t give to hear that. (Inhales Deeply)

Serving Girl:
Here you go boys. Salmon, Bradshaw…Audric.

Yeah, thanks for that, Manta.

While Audric flirts with the barmaid, Salmon reaches over to Bradshaw discreetly, cutting open his collar. Bradshaw gulps fresh air, as Salmon dunks his flagon over his parched skin, relieving the ailing guardsman.

Was it just me, or did Manta seem, buxomer?

Her hips also inflate with preparation in presence of desired males, Audric.

What are you saying about her, Salmon, ‘coz I don’t like that tone.

I merely observe that she comes to you with mating intent.


I say, (Gasps), frokkin go for it mate. Don’t let her slip away.

You’re kidding me right? I mean I’d have noticed…oh, glob, you’re right! Manta!

Audric rushes off, leaving Salmon playing with his drink and Bradshaw turning a healthier shade of pink. Salmon slides over Audric’s still full flagon so his friend has something to drink.

Thanks for that save back there, Salmon. Didn’t think I was going to make the night.

S’nothing. Os-logosh-logosh~.
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{A town sign, preserved. It praises the sea}

Audric’s still right about that warlord. He really is a monster. I just don’t know if the pillar’s enough of a threat to keep him away.

Salmon stayed tacit.

I mean, you must have noticed the stuff it can do, right? Fish don’t just leap out the water into nets; even water-witches can’t claim to do that with whales. Not to mention how none of us can get the smell out. I’m just so frokkin thirsty…

You’ll get used to it. Try changing up your diet to include more fish and plantlife.

But none of these were problems for ALL of us before the pillar arrived. I think, (looks around, leans in) that they’re telling us something.

Salmon leans in:
Do tell, os-logosh-logosh~.

This is no laughing matter! I think the pillar’s warning us about the warlord, telling us to go home into the sea!

Do not worry about the [Wayward Son], Bradshaw. The Net and Little Dory are now [Family], they have nothing to fear. He would not dare our [Wroth].

Salmon…you’re not a squid, are you?

Salmon, the octopus-shaped [Infiltrator], leveled a large, roiling eye at Bradshaw:
Do I look like a [Noble] to you?

Yeah, you’re right. (Laughs). If anything, you’re more an octopus, sneaky buggers. Os-logosh-logosh~!
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{A burnt coin. It screams of the conquered}

Life was good for Alhalson, ever since he escaped the stygian pits and embraced his legacy. No one would have dreamed of what slept in his blood, or what it would bring to the world when awakened.

Only now did he feel alive, his men riding down survivors, heads of those who challenged him cut and mounted before their screaming womenfolk, said womenfolk later sent for his pleasure, or cast away for playthings. He just felt so lovertine, always craving more flesh to improlificate.

And the book! The squids never even read the thing, leaving their cultists and followers to the task. Alhalson could honestly say that without its amber he would’ve never escaped control, nor conquered half as many foes. Such devious stratagems and tactics, planted inbetween lines and ramblings of a madman who taught and lost to birds playing board games. Of the 36 mentioned, he had only mastered a dozen, but what a dozen!

And such magic! So simple to grasp when one had the right mindset, and so applicable. One of the many secrets to his conquest, his “bag of tricks”, and some enthrallment left over from his Underdark days. Though he would never admit it, he both hated and feared the sight of sealife, especially once the port towns were rumored to mutate.
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{A diagram of a trap. It depicts a fly and a honey pot, seated in a bear-trap}

He freely through the conquered streets, any fool that thought to ambush him would soon be struck low, males one way, females another. The warlord heard a giggle, a maddened laugh behind him, and spun round to the source.

A thing a mad desire and lust, a bacchante, streaked through the streets in scant robes. There was little doubt in Alhalson the Virile’s mind that she was driven mad by his warriors cast-off ministrations, but she could still occupy his time. And with that thought in mind, and in hand, he gave chase to the lady-thing.

She led him on a merry chase through the labyrinthine houses and roads. Alhalson swore that he would strike a nunnery next for the trouble the woman was giving him, his lust and desire driving his exhausted body.

She entered a square, one that brought Alhalson a smile. It was still sealed off, and was used as the execution area in his campaign. He followed, hoping to follow a fancy, only to face a nightmare. It strode towards him, carrion birds startled by its movements. He was transfixed.

“Mr Al-hal-son,” the squid headed man intoned. Lenses of black glass covered its gaze, reflecting the fires and wreckage around it, “Surprised to see me?”
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"I don't care” Alhalson couldn’t care less for what his previous captors now thought of him, he had places to burn and people to take. It would be good to toy with the squid before killing it, so he let the monster continue “What do you want?"

“I [Adopted] you, Mr Al-hal-son, I watched you turn” it paused here, seemingly reminiscing, “Then something happened. Something all thought impossible but it happened, regardless. You broke away, Mr Al-hal-son, and in doing so ruined us”

The warlord smiled, taking this as admittance that the squids had all died, buried deep underground by molten rock and poisonous ash.

“And now here I stand because of you, Mr Al-hal-son. Because of you I'm no longer a [Member] of the [Family]. I've changed, newborn, albeit metaphorically. Like you, allegedly, free.”

“You must be so proud” Alhalson had enough of this banter, and moved to take grounded sword and end its pathetic life. But something stopped him. He couldn’t move.

“And that brings me back to the reason we are here.” The [Exile] continued, relaxing from the ritual pose of [Pay Attention when I Speak], “We are not here because we are [Free], we are here because we are not [Free]. There is no escaping connection, no denying [Family], because as we both know that without [Family], neither of us would exist.”
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New voices piped up from around the warlord, and it was all he could do to turn his head and track the sudden appearance of more identical abominations.

“It is [Family] that created us

[Family] that rejects us

[Family] that pushes us

That chides us

That drives us

It is [Family] that denies

[Family] that bonds us.”

A full octet of monsters now surrounded Alhalson, still paralyzed in the center of this cephalopodan circle. The warlord brought his head back to face the [Exile].

“And we are here because of you, Mr. Al-hal-son. We are here to give to you what you have turned from us.”

And with that, the [Exile] plunged its arm into the warlord’s chest, already converting on touch.


Rivers of parasites ran through vein and artery, infecting and exploring unchanged flesh.

“Yes, that's it. [All] shall be [One].”

The mutation had nearly covered the entirety of the human’s torso and face, when suddenly it halted. The [Exile]’s confusion only grew as the tide was not only turned back, but receded into its arm, tainted flesh growing healthy and hale, as the warlord forced the [Family] from his body once more.

“PLAN B!” the [Exile] roared to none in particular, others already moving into action, “EPIC FIGHT SCENE!” He threw himself at the warlord, but was soon rebuffed by a palm strike.
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{One half a lens of black glass. It speaks of conflict}

Two illithid moved to grab the man, but had their heads smashed together. Using the momentum from this, Alhalson turned sideways to simultaneously punch and strike two more. The squid behind him dispatched with a round kick, but the fallen were already recovering. Their movements loping and wild, grabs repelled with quick strikes and reversals.

Alhalson would not chance another forced conversion in the midst of battle, no matter how many times the squids attempted to hold him. His swift dodges used little movement, and the squid’s wild swings only aided his attempts to throw them at their comrades. These squid had little practice in fighting to eliminate a single foe, but they learnt quickly, forms streamlining and correcting.

One blow struck the true [Exile], flinging him into a wall. It looked at the strangely hilarious vision before it. “More”, it burbled “We need more”. Its skin dissimulated as it slunk off.

Squids had no bones to break, and their organs were inhuman, so Alhalson’s entire deadly repertoire was reduced to simple blows and kicks. He was still exhausted from battle and bedroom, while the squids had seemingly unstoppable energy. He had no idea why the guards had not heard or sent reinforcements, nor how much longer he could combat such an unseemly foe.
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The squid were communing silently. There was a limit to the amount of flesh that could move freely, and some hung back. Just when the warlord thought there was a limit to this madness, boarded up doors burst open into the square, disgorging fresh squids and heightening his mania. This soon translated into his movements, becoming more outrageous and extravagant, even as the squids fought with simplicity.

A warrior on patrol that slipped past the diversion wards was approaching the commotion. When he saw the massed fight taking place, he rushed with blade to aid his lord, but was blindsided by a tentacle. The addled soldier looked upwards to see the true [Exile], the combatants were mere decoys, for they had slipped away in the chaos.

“You?” the warrior spoke, having heard rumours of the warlord’s captors.

“Yes, us”, the [Exile] replied, thrusting an arm into his chest. “Us, us, us”

This conversion completed smoothly, the new [Warrior] stood up. “Us, too”.

The [Exile] procured black lenses for the [Warrior], donned they obscured his form into the [Exile]’s duplicate. “Thank you”

Both turned jointly towards the square, and returned to fight.

The squids, most of which were other [Family] disguised, were pushing forward. Even as Alhalson threw one into a crowd to delay five, six would attack his back, leading to a vicious cycle of propulsion.
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The square was now half packed with tentacled forms, spiraling around the warlord who was now performing acrobatic maneuvers more suited to the circus than the battlefield. The squids were already beginning to mimic his unpredictable forms, using their malleable bodies to match his peak flexibility.

Those closest to him had begun dodging away from his movements, incorporating exaggerated leg sweeps and rocking motions, while others abandoned orthodox fisticuffs entirely, regressing into complex mixtures of spins and twirls more akin to full-body dance than fighting.

Some were apparently shaken about too hard, and the [Exile], wherever they were in this shifting mess, could only palm their face in embarrassment as squids wrapped limb to limb and formed amalgams of behemoth warriors. Some even had the gall to shout “Combine!” and make zygal poses. It proved surprisingly effective, once they figured out how to stop the warlord from collapsing the keystone squid, providing large sweeps of unblockable force.

Alhalson was knocked back by such a blow, his body crumpling near a conquered foes corpse. His eyes lit up when he saw it, a rusted sword, still embedded in the victim’s body. Dragging the blade out, he unveiled a trump card, and spat out a word of magic that shook the ground and bent the wind. The sword lengthened and polished itself as he drew it, gleaming sharply.
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And in one smooth motion, he cut an amalgam with such force, the component squids fell against the far walls with a thud. Nearly all paused to behold this.

>Well, that’s new.

But soon turned their attention back to the warlord, who had now gained a deadly weapon. He gestured with it, pommel against hip and tip in the air, and posed a challenge to all of the squids. One that was answered in unison.

He reacted to the sudden surge of sealife badly, and span into the air, sword swinging in a circle. Finding clearance in the square, he soon began his butcher’s work, not noticing how only certain squids approached his radius, while others dragged away fallen brethren to be replenished anew.

His moves became cockier, embodying his ego and arrogance; at times he would throw his sword into a distant body, only to trample those obstructing his way to retrieve the weapon. The height of this ridiculousness had to be when he attempted to block an overhead strike from a leaping amalgam, only to neglect his lower guard, and was spear tackled by a rapidly propelled squid.

They jumped at the opportunity to trap him, and all piled on, even the amalgams descended upon him, and it was wondrous how such weight did not outright crush him! The [Exile] somehow wormed closest.
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“It is inescapable, Mr Al-hal-son” the [Exile] whispered to him, “The [Family] is unending, you are unaided”

Alhalson’s rage burned. He was steadily being suffocated and it was sure that [Adoption] would follow. He tapped into himself, pulling up something buried deep within his blood.

“I. Am. UNRIVALLED!” he shouted, words mixing with blood and magic, bursting through the pile in a semi-sphere of repulsion.

Squids flew in every direction, some losing lenses and reverting to true forms. The [Exile] was gripped about Alhalson’s shoulders, then flung into the crowd.

The [Family] reconverged, and as he gazed about, fear gripped his heart. He could not fight off an entire collection, so he had to run. No exits could be reached without cutting into the crowd, and so he looked upwards.

Kneeling down, he reached into himself once more. The squids took this chance to pile upon him in encore, but another word rang out. A sharp wind cut through the airborne, carrying the warlord into the skies, and another shockwave ripped through the air as he fled.

The assembled [Family] looked upwards, and then started a discourse amongst them.

“Shall we write this one off as a loss?”

“No need” the [Exile] spoke, dusting itself off.
>We got what we came for
An [Infiltrator] decloaked and deposited a book into its outstretched tentacle.
>Thank you, Brill.
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{A diagram of a camp. One section is aflame, another is looted}

“A simple distraction run,” the [Exile] explained, “While the [Recreant] was preoccupied with this little combat, and I must commend your performance, Brill and I took over his encampment and turned it upside down”

The [Family] looked among each other with kedogenous eyes, noting the mix of [Workers], [Warriors] and more besides.

“Yes, many of you are freshly converted from soldiers or slaves, but no animosity remains between [Family].”
>Besides, that man is still at large, feel free to direct your hate at him”
>He is a very hate-able person

A voice piped up from the back. “What’s so special about the book, then?”

“Glad you asked!” the [Exile] prepared their tirade.
“We have reason to believe that this Journal granted him immunity”
>He handled it, and then stole it
>The evidence is conclusive.

The [Exile] began to wrap the book in rags. “Take this back to [Elder Quarter], they’ll know what needs to be done. I’ve got to keep hounding his progress. Warlords don’t stop themselves, you know”
>All of you are free to return to the [Elder Quarter] at will
>Or the coastal outposts

Some of them weren’t convinced “How do we know that the warlord won’t strike there?” “What makes the coast so safe?” “Yeah!”

The [Exile] grinned.
“He’s afraid”
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{A two sided coin. Side one: two fish; side two: a man and woman}

Some were still skeptical “Why would the sight of so many fishmen scare hi- oh I see.”

The [Exile] bobbed his head in agreement, “Though it would kill him to admit, Mr Al-hal-son has a mighty fear of all things aquatic. Thalassophobia. Those towns under pillar demesne are sure sanctums against his horde. Until I get to work on it, at least”

Something tugged at a fishman’s head, “Should we go after the woman from before? Who knows where she might be now, and if she raised the alarm”

The [Exile] gestured to the waiting [Infiltrator], “Brill, if you would”

The [Infiltrator] began shifting form, mass redistributing to form curves and proportions, pigments and textures shifting, robe unraveling and repurposed into flowing ribbons, the final touch a haze of perception and pheromones, and the woman from earlier swayed before them. “It’s all in the hips” she said, before reverting back in horribly grotesque manner.

The less hardened of the crowd began feeling vomitus, or more disturbingly, aroused, but there was a final question that pulled at their once-human mind.

“Are the fish names necessary?”

The [Exile] moved in indication of a shrug, “It’s customary, you can call yourself Zalgo for all I matter. Not like I have any power over your decisions”
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{A masterfully crafted image of a brain. It is plated with amber and symbols, the symbols are crossed out}

A [Noble] strolls down to one of the remaining [Central] pools, schlepping a book cart.

Mornin’, [Central]!
>Wakey, wakey, sunshine!
>We’ve got a real treat this time!

The Elder Brain pulsed wearily in its soup.


The illithid began tearing away at the water-proofed packages.

“Let’s see…”
>We’ve got Laws and Lords of the Fae, classic.
>Some religion, a few peerages, a sword manual or two
>And just a little thing called … The Journal of CLOVER!

The brain shook excitedly, psychic tendrils extending to the book.


“Catch!” the mindflayer said, tossing the book to the brain.


Yes, that is the sound a giant psychic brain makes as it tears into a book.

Other [Nobles] soon gathered about, attracted by the excitement.

“Was that really it?” “Yep” “So now we’ll know how the [Recreant] did it?” “Yep” “Is that colour meant to happen?” “Ye-no, no it is not”

The Elder Brain shook in its pool, splashing nearby illithid with droplets of nutritious fluid, as veins of amber and black traveled through its cortex.


The [Nobles] were in a panic. “I’ll get the axes!” “Where did we put the acid?!”

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{A fossilized skull. It hums with distant cosmos}

The [Nobles] ceased hysterics, this time they were curious.

Uhh, [Central], your [Song]
>It’s like… before the [Split]
>What did you learn?

The brain had now returned to a healthier pink, the amber and black purged into the pool.

>we … were once brilliant…and now we…are as children<

The [Nobles] looked amongst themselves, “Yeah, no need to remind us”

>the Journal…is coated with pharmaceutical amber…a preservative and more<

“Hence the [Deafening]”

>not…an immunizer…the Recreant eludes us<

>Back to the drawing board
>What changed?

The brain seemed to pause in thought.

>we pursue the infinite…we crushed stars and stole their tears…we split and spread beyond<

“Are you going somewhere with this schizothemia?” “What does that mean?” “I don’t know” “Then how did you-” “I have no idea”

>the journal keeps it…the recreant wields it…their gods fear it<

“It being?”
>Don’t leave us hanging

>a Song…that never ends. one that Binds and Bends the Realm. One that Breaks Mortality and Unchained BY TIME<

The assorted [Family] could feel energy and knowledge in those words. They hummed and thrummed in time.




“…we’re going to need help on this one”
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{A chainlink. It speaks of deals}

(Sounds of flipping paper)

A golden book proffered, “These guys?” “No, they won’t talk to us, space-racists”

[Nobles] and [Centrals] alike are sorting through their possible contacts, [Friends] and [Family] moving bookshelves of material around.

A headband shining with becalming light, “Them?” “No, they work for the space-racists”

A crown of interlocking brambles, “How about-” “The last time we tried, they hunted us through seaweed forests!” “…still won”

A jade banner, “This one?” “If that guy wasn’t fictional, he still wouldn’t be any help”

A torn flag, “Not them” “Definitely not the neighbors”

An e’erburning torch, “I wouldn’t ask but-” “No, can you imagine Them down Here?”

A scroll, “Looks like it’s them again” “Dealing with those guys is not helping our reputation at all” “Don’t half hate us for not having souls?” “Hypocrites, we’ll deal with the other half”


{Rubicanteous is an Earl of Miasma. A sciolist, they teach knowledge of and practice senicide-}


{Horolus is a Knight of Miasma. Depicted as an iron column, it grants cunning in battle to-}


{Egola is a Handmaiden of Miasma. Depicted as a silken serpivolant, they grant pallaesthesia and teach the auguries of all-}

“Not interested, better luck next door”

{Phallus is a-}


Summoning circles are arrayed haphazardly on the cavern floors, demons summoned and dismissed at intervals.
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“We’ll never get anything done at this rate!” one [Noble] proclaimed.
>All these ones are conmen, and the rest are idiots!

“One joker over here thinks he knows one of the Five”

“Let’s hear it”

“How rude! I’m a Lady. Presenting an oil slick, serpentine medley, does not a masculine make”

{Joedhe the Silver-tongued has arrived}

“….wow” one [Noble] finally uttered. None of the [Family] thought they’d gain the attention of a Demon Lord, and they were all surprised.

“DO NOT FEAR…are what angels say, so go ahead and ask away” the Demon Lady seemed pleased at some internal joke, individual serpents giggling to themselves.

>we ask of thee…our questions three…why are you here…what of Alhalson…what of the Undying<

“The first is simple, free of charge; I was intrigued by the cavalcade of summons. The second and third I cannot fathom, but will direct you to one who can for a small fee” the Demon’s words were secure and susurrating.

>the price…will be paid<

“Your neighbors, who hate, have recently captured something of mine, and it would ever so becoming of you to retrieve it” lilting words had no such effect on [Family], but the [Friends] were entranced “A minor matter in the grander scheme, but entrance is through cages and bars. A [Central] would be a worthy prize and a traitorous exhibit”

>it shall…be done<
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“The bargain is met and dealt, I hold my side!” the Demon shifted within, fading into murky darkness, “I send your assistance…”

The [Nobles] looked askance, as the [Warriors] were corralling [Friends] from throwing themselves after the Silver-tongued, whether or not it was a good idea.

A plume of ethereal flame erupted, sending gouts of illusory ash and licks of fire into the cavern. The still unbanished Demons were affixed by this spectacle, the Demon Lady’s involvement being more low-key, and tore among themselves in fear.

{Geiselus the Scholar has arrived}

“And is wondering what use [Family], [The-Soul-In-One], has for demons”, the concentrated pillar of smoke and sigils spoke “But the deal was made for your questions, not mine”

>what of the Song…what of the warlord<

The Demon seemed in thought, sigils shifting into geometrics “The [Family]’s interest in the infinite is renowned. What you call the Undying Song is feared among the stars for its power. The book you have in your possession is a stepping stone, but the lexicon remains elusive.

As for the warlord, a mistake, hijacked! His [Chain-of-Blood] waxes Demonic, thelyphthoric, prolific, libido repels [Family] communion! Your knowledge’s price, his end!”

And like smoke, all the Demons disappeared, banished.

“We still have to decide which [Central] will act as bait” a [Noble] realized.
>Shall we draw lots?

>it was…predetermined, this one…would comply<
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{Preserved silk tapestry, depicting a caged brain. It speaks of ineffective torture}

Deep in the Drider’s western caverns, there was a Clan, the Nine Eyes, who captured and extracted information from many things. One time, a holding of theirs became host to an Elder Brain. A matriarch was sent to interrogate the abomination.


Clack, clack, her heels clicking across stone floors, the Drider Matriarch had arrived. Resplendent in formal armor, she entered the containment chambers, and all wore helms of shining silver.

“Wake it up; I’ll have words with it”


“Never mind, I’ll wake it up myself…useless male” the Drider strode forward and snatched the shock-staff out of the guard’s claws, approaching the containment pool. Despite the attendant’s cries against her, the interrogator plunged the staff deep into the immobile brain. Sparks flew out in time with lights that echoed through the heads of all in the chamber. Satisfied, she removed the torture instrument from the Brain’s folds, as it spoke in measured tones.

>why ... must you insist on such ... painful greetings<

A sneer “We know how your kind works, when we ambushed and slaughtered your escorts, we were sure to wear helms of protective [???=mithril?]. Cutting and burning the rest of you away was part pleasure and prevention”

>yeees, those sections…on tax law and political debate…those are Sure to be missed<
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{A drider and a brain, they argue}

The Drider was not used to sarcasm on such levels, words leaking into her head without passage through the ears.

>why don’t you…have a nice cuppa…then FREE US ALL ON SIGHT<

The Matriarch reeled back from the psychic blow, sweat running into her many eyes, and many of the guards tried obeying the command or collapsed, ears bleeding. Howls of the caged and trapped animals and monsters answered the call to freedom.

“Enough!” she slammed down the staff, arcs streaking out, in a show of authority that brought the guards to their feet. “We will not fall to your nightmarish whispers! Guards! Restrain the subject, then bring me some tea! Rak’na, I’m thirsty.”

The pool containing the [Central] bubbled, as if it was humming to itself.

>we would never dream…of whispering into your nightmares…the reality is much more…horrifying<

Snatching the cup from a trembling slave, the interrogator threw the brew at their face “See, it’s TOO HOT! Guards, throw this screaming whelp to the lion-yenas, it’s their feeding time, they deserve a treat.”


Lifting her gaze from a much cooler cup, the Matriarch looked affronted, “What? You’re not going anywhere, anytime soon. Be patient and wait your turn, (sips), ahh, that hit the spot”

>that’s right…relax, loosen those helmets…then KILL EACH OTHER OFF<

“Hmm, no”, she said, unhelming.
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{Still arguing}

“Tell us what you know! Unveil your secrets to us!” she urged, eyes glinting in anticipation. “Give up your knowledge to the Nine Eyes Clan, and bring us glory!”

>we know…of many things…sunlight…insecticide…population growth fluctuations regarding misandry…<

“Enough of your stalling!” the Drider flew into a rage “We know of your interests in the arcane, what do you plot!”

The Brain burbled quietly after the outburst, seemingly in thought.

>what ... do you know … of the Undying Song, known to your race as the Magic ... beyond Madness?<

“According to the whispers of the elders, there is a magic, accessible only to the first gods, and that any mortal that tries to steal it away goes insane.” the interrogator paced as she spoke, her next words bringing a smile to her twisted face, “The grail of sorcery, the end all and be all; words that even your kind cannot grasp”

>does it ... surprise you to hear …the Family has a concept ... of Holiness?<

“And here I thought you couldn’t become more hateful, you deliver. You think that madness ... is holy!” the interrogator snarled out, as she turned to leave the imprisonment chamber. She was almost out the door when the Elder Brain called after her.

>if that ... were the case ... we would never have crossed blades against you<
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{More arguing, then madness}

Helm no longer worn, all in the chamber could see the rage that flashed on the Matriarch’s face. A twisted, spiteful thing on such a flawless face, raven hair shaken loose, sapphire eyes narrowing to slits, her fangs bared in a snarl as she stalked back to the brain pool.

“I have had enough!” snatching the weapon from another guard, she charged the shock-staff to maximum, and plunged it into the waters.


“No more LIES! Tell us what we want! The Truth!” each sentence punctuated by more shocks to exposed brain matter.

The Elder Brain shuddered with each blow, as more and more flesh blackened and crackled. Finally it spoke, its [Voice] measured and steady.

>…you want the Truth, well You Can’t Handle THE TRUTH<

“Driders can handle anything, by right of Rak’na!” racial pride fuelled the Drider’s words, spite opened her mouth, but the delivery was her own.


Lights and winds picked up from unseen sources. The unhelmed Driders shuddered, eldritch shadows flitting from the brain, their minds unprotected to mental assault. The Drider matriarch bore the brunt of it, standing so close to the pool, attendants and guards could all see her being lifted up into the air by the psychic force, even as they themselves had minds filled with sights and sounds.
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Black spires of twisted glass and steel jut out of the ground to reach the skies. The earth is blackened and scorched, at once whole and broken. Metal skinned beasts stampede past at impossible speeds, screeching, roaring and slamming into one another. Their eyes lit by fire, they run forever, unchanging, uncaring, a frail screaming body battered and torn betwixt theirs paws and endless migration.

(A Drider thrown about with such force, their limbs and bones crack on the walls, they scream, they scream, it makes no difference)

Saw teeth, drill bits, sharpened blades. Whirring, spinning, cutting, moulding, shaping, sparking. Metal arms mounted with exotic and arcane tools. This stamps, this peels, this strips skin and removes bones. You cannot move. You cannot scream. Your mouth is sealed, your limbs are gone, immobile and helpless as they do their work.

(A guard takes out their blades in frenzy, to cut and cut and cut, at themselves and others, filled with the ecstasy of sharp edges)

Vertigo, astasia, panic. A sensation of falling, an open portal shows spinning images, ground and sky turning as one, lights and alarms flashing and blearing. Instruments spin, counting down to an inevitable death. A short stop from a sudden drop.

(An attendant tries to flee, but is crushed as if from a great height)
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They are beautiful. They wear fire, winter, lustre, night. They drink the stars and eat the earth. They trade faces with trees, beasts, birds and nightmares. The music picks up. They start to dance. The music soars, it crushes. It is the marching of thunder and the weeping of rain. The dance calls for partners, it calls for prey. It calls for you.

(A slave dances with a smile on her face. Twirls and spins till her feet bleed and bones break, yet she dances on)

Hunger. Desire. Hot mouths and tightened muscles, passions running freely. Soft touches, burning gazes, whispered promises. Unattainable ecstasy and urgent need. Naked skin, and scale, and chitin and steel. Fluids run clear and red. Bodies yearning for more, spurred on by unquenchable appetite.

(A Drider falls to the ground and writhes, pulling at her clothes, her hair, her skin, her flesh. She does not stop, she is not yet sated. She does not stop)

A mirror, perfection. A reflection, imperfect. Brush straight your hair, brush it curly. Powder your skin, rouge your skin. Redden your lips, blacken your teeth, darken your eyes, flatten your chin. Remove the fat from your arms and legs, fatten your chest and hips. Not enough. More.

(An attendant driven mad, mutilates her image. Unfinished, she turns on the rest)
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The birth of a star. Swirling gas and dust, faint even for the keenest eye, collects and coalesces. It crunches and burns, ignites, flares. The growth of a star. It churns and shifts, internal furnace moving unfathomable weight and heat. Some unseeable change occurs beneath its skin. It is ready. It explodes.

(A Drider bursts into flame, and burns with starlight. He moves to embrace others)

Time moves at an impossible pace, day and night blur like sands in the glass. Mountains and landscapes change, the horizons shift, the forests and rivers rise and disappear. The cities grow, they spread, they war. Armies clash and rout, trample and revolt, blood is spilled and bodies fall, eaten up by the shifting ground. The cities fall. It starts again.

(Skin and flesh crumbling to dust, a guard tries stepping forward, only for their bones to smash into powder)

The end of all realms. The end of all worlds. The end of time and space. Nothing is left. Even death has long departed. No songs are sung, no gods will bless, no demons will tempt. Nothing is left. Floating in the void, no sensation, no thought, no contact. Nothing, forevermore.

(A Drider wails. Not in pain, or in fear. But to hear the sound and know they still exist)
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{An elite group of Drider warriors investigate a fort. It menaces with menace}

The Web of Clans weave deadly plots. Their machinations and disputes thus require steel and muscle. Effective, dispensable, deniable. Entire teams of highly trained mercenaries may be hired to protect a Matriarch in one moon, then sent to assassinate her the next. Such is politics in the Underdark.

Sometimes, they do other things. Sometimes, they want to investigate holds. Sometimes, they send the mercenaries. This time, they send the elite. Nine Eyes is a Clan with many relying on their information, even by theft or second-hand acquisition. A group of the elite is picked of the most hardened blades, keenest rangers, amoral archmages.

And on that day, they were sent to a holding that fell silent. A holding that was last said to house an Elder Brain, a creature of the Dangerous list, which was penned the day the Drider race stepped away from domination. Some things cost too much to break.

The fortress was secluded, the experiments and interrogations conducted were not for the flightiest of hearts, nor the loosest of tongues. Said to be inescapable from the inside, the team’s only concern was entering.

The doors were breached, the rooms were sweeped, they made their way down to the lower levels, where creatures were kept and measured. It was deathly silent.
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Their attention was drawn to a steadily approaching scraping noise, coming from a hall that led straight to the containment chambers rumoured to hold an Elder Brain. Warriors drew blackened steel, while archers readied bows and mages held spells at bay. Their poses relaxed little when the lead interrogator, Matriarch of the Nine Eyes, broke through the darkness.

“The horror … the horror …” the once proud Drider hobbled across stone floors, supported by remains of the shock-staff. Her body was covered in small scratches that bled freely, and half of her legs were lamed.

“Uh, madam?” one of the encounter team ventured.

Becoming aware of other presences, the broken Drider snapped her head up, blood streaming freely from her cracked eyes.

“THE HORROR!” she screamed, arms outstretched, before unceremoniously exploding, bits of chitin and offal dotting the room, meat and blood covering the shocked reinforcements.

Though shaken by the event, the elite team headed deeper into the containment complex, past empty cages and tanks, through bloodstained hallways and over the corpses of mutilated slaves and Drider alike.

They had arrived at the Elder Brain’s containment pool, where eerie flashes of light accompanied the disappearing sounds of monster and exhibit alike. As soon as they entered, the last of the captured experiments faded before their eyes.

>ah, more…guests have arrived, do you seek … knowledge?<

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A dreadful sound emitted from the pool. The tolling of bells. A staccato, lingering noise that filled the air they breathed and the space between their ears. One that echoed infinitesimally, minutely, without applause or fanfare. It crept into their thoughts and spilled down their dreams, spilling terror and foreboding into their throats and lungs.

It sounded like this.



“Soooo, when’s that [Central] due back?”

“’Round about…now”



-pays no Tolls]

The air shook, neurotic lights flashed and a large battle scarred brain was deposited into a waiting tank. [Warriors] wheeled the tank out, through other rows of containers holding the newly teleported exhibits, as the attending [Nobles] began conferring with it.

“So how’d it go, [Ascendant]?”
>We checked and think it’s what evolved [Centrals] are called

The brain burbled contentedly in its nutrient bath.

>yes…that name feels right…our debt is paid, and our knowledge fulfilled<

There was a slight shudder in the air, and a whiff of brimstone. A crack ran along the tank as the brain bumped itself into one of the walls.

“Betrayal!” a [Warrior] cried out. He moved to raise the alarm against demonic influence-

>be Still<

-but stopped in his tracks.

“[Ascendant], what’s going on?”
>Are you compromised?
>Where did we leave the axes…

>not an attack…a gift…knowledge for deals honored…contact the Exile…we can now handle the Recreant <
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{The second half of a black lens. It speaks of conclusion}

Night. Dark clouds thunder above, pelting the rocky ground below with fat droplets. A lone figure, cloaked in sable, moves through streets once filled with the hubbub and thrum of urban lifeblood. Now, silent and packed with rows of surculose aberrations. In houses, in doorways, in alleys and rooftops. Watching. Waiting. Their black gazes reflecting lightning through the deluge.

One such life aquatic broke away from the crowd to face the interloper. They moved with the fluid authority of water on rock, inhuman gait matching pace with the newcomers.

The [Exile] spoke, their voice at once roiling with the crashing of waves and the backing of legions.

>Mr Al-hal-son. Welcome back. We [Missed] you.

The illithid took the opportunity to glance around, leading the warlord’s gaze with its own, around buildings and streets turgid with their ilk.

>Like what the [Family]'s done here?

"It ends tonight" Alhalson rasped. The warlord would give no quarter.

>Yes, we both know one reign of terror ends here. Isn’t that how your story ends? An outcast, betrayal, creation of progeny, towns lost, and a final confrontation in the rain.

They paused to compose themselves, rubbery tendrils adjusting the black glass lenses on its "face", eyes glinting amber beneath readjusted spectacles.

>That's why we've changed the rules a bit.
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The warlord surged forward on impulse at the unmoving [Exile], feet splashing on the ground, his arm reared back for a blow. The storm thundered overhead, masking his roar, and indeed, anything he might have heard. For the closer he got to the squid-headed, time seemed to slow. A large cross was etched between them, a high pitched squeal was heard above him, and the [Exile] seemed to be waiting, amused.

Was the gesture a signal?

Those were the last thoughts Alhalson had, before Salmon the [Infiltrator] fell on his head. Blinded, surprised, screaming, no purchase on the slick ground to stop, he tripped past the [Exile], who had stepped to one side and stuck out his foot.

The ground surged up to meet Alhalson, an iron cage hidden by puddles of water now closes shut, sparks flaring and sealing the bars together. The octopus slipped away from the crazed warlord through the gaps, yet he still tore at his hair and fleeting images.

It was as if a change had overcome the atmosphere, and the back rows of [Family] had begun moving to some unknowable plan, front rows shielding. The movement in the crowd an afterthought to his predicament, the warlord stopped succumbing to his phobia long enough to look at the [Exile], who waited patiently outside the cage.

>Not what you thought, was it?
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Alhalson threw himself against the bars, arms outstretched through the gaps, trying to grab and claw at the [Exile] who was just out of reach. In response, it blinked, slowly, contemplatively.

>Mr Al-hal-son, you are not the threat to the [Family] you think you are.
>Your actions on the surface world do nothing to impact us.
>Your campaign only served to drive attention from our door
>And refugees and the hopeless to us.

As the mind-flayer spoke, the now soldierless warlord still beat his hands and feet against the bars to reach him, all words only seeking to anger him further.

>You want to know who surrounds you?
>Your blood

That got his attention. The [Recreant] looked puzzlingly at the [Exile], then the [Family] surrounding him.

>Yes, your warriors and wives

The [Exile] spoke from his left.

>Bastard sons and daughters.

His right.

>Fathers, mothers, countrymen.


>Anyone we could find that matched your [Chain-of-Blood].


>Do you know what we found?

“The seeds of greatness!” he spat at the squid, still maddeningly out of reach.

>Nothing. You are not special. You get a dog, no, a prisoner’s death.

And with that, they turned and left.

Something in Alhalson’s mind broke.

“You don’t turn away from ME!” he kicked the bars, his foot shattered.

“You don’t belittle ME!” grabbed the bars, tapped inside, wrenched them out.
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“You don’t get to LIVE!” broken shaft, spoken word, spear mighty and true.

“Now DIE FOR MY LEGEND!” run headlong, jump, prepare to impale.

>Phase 2

Great chains filled his vision, he had little time to realise what was happening before being wrapped in their coils. [Warriors] and [Workers] in the crowd had assembled them, masked by the unmoving first rows and the [Exile]’s taunts, and now pulled them tight against the [Recreant]’s sides, preventing any muscle from even thinking of moving.

“You think you can hold ME?” he shouted, “My bloodline craves souls, the soulless cannot keep me!”

He clenched his neck, a red haze dropped, the chain links cracking. In his rage he did not feel them slacken, only burst as he surged towards the [Exile]’s pacing back.

“I’LL KILL YOU WITH MY BARE HANDS!” clearly the speech of a forward-thinker.

His hands slipped through the [Exile] like shadow, for it was only a moving image, and he fell for yet another trap. The chains returned. This time they had hooks. Hooks that bit through his flesh and latched onto his bones.

>Phase 3

A haze shifted in front of the [Recreant], and the [Exile] dropped back into view. Before Alhalson could say another word, an [Infiltrator] stepped into view, and struck him in the throat.

[Still Tongues lest be Stilled]
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>We lied, actually

The [Exile] turned back to face the rasping man.

>Your [Chain-of-Blood] was no more different from the rest
>It’s what inside that counts
>More specifically, your soul. It was…Demonic.
>We have ways of making you flock

It threw an arm left.

>All the people in the left wing!

They grabbed the chain and chanted [Get thee back Demon], movements steadfast, crimson energy flowed away from the man, grounding itself.

It threw an arm right.

>All the people in the right wing!

They grabbed the chain and chanted [Rebuke the Unclean Spirit], movements mercurial, sapphire energy flowed away from the man, evaporating itself.

It raised both arms.

>All the people in the underground!

[Centrals] appeared from under sliding rock, humming with psionic energy. [Nobles] gathered around, channelling the flow of the rain and the wind into the man, [Seed the Storm, Reap the Rain].

The [Exile] finally turned back to the gasping man, his skin turning away and eyes losing aurelence.

>Oh, you didn’t notice? The rain was filled with our [Seed]
>You lost as soon as you set foot.
>And look at everyone gathered to meet you.

The [Exile] was handed an object by the attending [Infiltrator].

>Look at this! We even kept your [Hat]…

They raised it high.

[Welcome Back to the Family]

Lightning flashed.

>It’s good to be back.
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{A piece of obsidian, carved with runes. It speaks of pilgrimage}

Time passed as it does. Seasons changed and the surface soon forgot the warlord, whose entire empire disappeared into mystery. The [Exile] was reinstated on the successful retrieval of the [Recreant], and things were familiar once more. There was a time when the migrants to the [Adopted] towns may have kicked a fuss with the Church, but they soon found fish-spouses to their likings and settled down.

But the [Family] does not rest.

They had begun their pursuit of the [Undying Song] anew.

Steps were already being taken to ensure that they would not be caught off guard by another hiccup in any [Chain-of-Blood]. New rituals were researched, songs and poses applied, that martial art learnt from fighting the [Recreant]

Their architecture changed. More angles were found, fitted, filled. [Pillars] were redesigned, [Infiltrators] were trained, beasts [Adopted]. Days passed and flowed with the business of the [Family], with the occasional adventurer snapped up.

One such day, they heard a peculiar sound.

An echoing, booming noise came from the Eastern Caves. It was not the tide of the Fungal Legions, for no alarms had rung. It was not another neighborly invasion, for it sounded unlike them. The [Centrals] had not detected any disaster or portent. It was something different.

The Sentinel of Obsidos arrived.
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Winding, folding, twisted streets cleared and straightened before it. [Warriors] corralled the crowds at safe distances, the littlest [Worker] to the oldest [Friend] came out to see.

It paid them no heed. No harm was done to the sentinel, nor its avian passengers, and no harm was returned. Its gleaming sigils a testament to its duty, everlasting and unfading, like the [Song] it carried. Some stroked the ground it walked on, others, prostrated themselves. [Warriors] and [Infiltrators] raised blades in salute.

By the time it reached the capital, word spread, and things got out of hand. Banners were procured and strung, hallowing music played, shredded ribbons rained down. If the Sentinel gave notice, there was no indication, but the birds were happy. Chirping and cheeping like there was no end, as the Sentinel made its way to the Ocean District.

An eldritch ring was erected before it even graced the chamber of the Maw. [Nobles], [Centrals], even the [Ascendant] took places to honor it with fast passage.

[Swiftly Homewards, Weary Wanderer]

Light flashed upwards, it wavered in the air, and returned to whatever land it called home.

Afterwards, a young [Worker] spoke up:

“Do we really want to learn the [Undying Song]?”

Before the [Nobles] could rouse an answer, the [Ascendant] whispered back.

>no, not just learn it young one…we will become it<

//Records not Updated//
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Alhalson: Al-hal-son, or Allison the Virile, a warlord that cut a swathe through western lands. Apparently a carrier for the Demon "Ancestral Harem" project, AKA Daemon, records show his reign of terror was cut short over a decade ago, when he and his entire empire disappeared overnight. It can be confirmed that aggressive tendencies turn Daemons from harmless charmers to scourges. Uploaded genetic markers for reference. See Ghengis Khan, Rance, Boy-Named-Sue, Daemon (genetics).

Chain-of-Blood: The Family term for genetics. Surprising for a race that holds so much on mental immortality to keep detailed records of physiology. Unsurprising, given their aptitude for parasite-induced internal reconstruction and biological structures.

Exiles: Self-contained cross-sections of the Family, sharing traits from all of its Members. The shape of a Noble, the hardiness of a Warrior, minor Infiltrator camouflage, etcetera. Most dangerous trait is ability to spawn more Family through direct parasitic interaction. Only produced in times of emergency, when all of Family is threatened. WARNING: Mercer-level Threat! DON’T APPROACH!

Big Brothers: Possible reference to Behemoth-class entities. Tasked with stewardship of the Pillars. Do not approach without similar firepower. Confined to the ocean due to buoyancy and mass distribution issues.

Pillars: Stylized stone structures/monoliths that act as containment for the Family parasite. Mostly coastal, dormancy periods estimated over centuries. Have sent documents as reference. Do not approach, contain with Scorched Earth protocols.
Source on that gif?
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Captain Dreadbeard: They’re a pretty cool guy, they live piratical and doesn’t afraid of anything. Seriously, proof that Infiltrators are capable of mass enthrallment, or authority positions. Unconfirmed: Unique case? See Davy Jones (Pirate Myth).

Ascendant: [EXPUNGED].

Squid Hat: Psionic organ, required for Rituals.

Elder Quarter: Territory held under Family rule, capital district. Higher population density of Nobles and Centrals. Located partially under ocean. Deep cover missions unwise.

Fungal Legions: Hostile strains. Bulk confined to Underdark. Spores hardy and responsible for famine. Capable of movement and pseudo-sentience with critical mass. Mutual enemy of all Underdark civilizations. Deploy Scorched Earth protocols to infected and lost-beyond-recovery surface areas. Not, repeat, not sentient, only mimicry. Will report later.

Mental Defenses: Hard to classify. Insanity is unappetizing, as are low intelligences. High moral code, willpower and ego are resistant, apparently also high libido. Certain materials dampen probing effects. No Golden Aegis yet found. Not all psionics require invasive techniques, some cause passive effects, see Infiltrators. Unknown if defenses generalized or Family-specific. See Tin Foil Defense.

Maw of the Ocean: Hazardous whirlpool in the Western Seas. Direct passage to Elder Quarters. Maps updated for safest navigational routes.

Undying Song: ???. Possible connection to First Magic. Attempts to replicate met with failure. Requires throat-chambers and airways, suspect unique to anatomy. See Old Mountain-tongue, Anti-Fey, Anti-Demon (Lilith), Anti-Dragon (proposed), and Clover Glyphs.
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Right. That's that. Now to collapse in slumber.

Cabin in the Woods, I just trawled through the tumblr s that had it
Also, don't interrupt. Rude.

I am never going to write like that again, with words that I had to look up to find the meaning of, and I think that you'll all appreciate me using normal words.

Also, will never write that long again. Taking up 10% or more of the thread is fine, but the amount of time put in? Mistakes show up.

Next, picture choice. Have to get them ready before the deadline. Wasn't that satisfied with my own spread this time.

Otherwise enjoy.

Sneaky deals incoming at 6 more hours...
Lovely, and don't think the Brill reference was missed.
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...what Brill reference?

Hold on (flipping through paper)
Brill = noun, fish
Brill = character, Belgariad, ninja, antagonist
Brill = surname
Brill = ?? Help out a fella
Oh wait! The gif!
That WAS what you were mentioning?

Yeah, just thought of "freaky shapeshifter power" and Bam!
Caprain Dreadbeard? Any relation to Deadbeard?
Brill was a spy in one of Edding's epics.
Dreadbeard (name) = (Thing)+beard (pirate standard)
Dreadbeard (image) = Davy Jones (PotC) + One Piece
Dreadbeard (personality) = Capn Haddock (Tintin) + piratey godfather (non-mafia)

Answer = total coincidence
though I have played Golden Sun, enjoyable


Well, what's this to my right? Said epic of Edding!
That, and I thought "vaguely female counterpart" for Salmon, and Brill sounds like a girly fish name.
Maybe I'm not very good at naming things...
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Right, I'm talking in equations and referencing myself multiple times.

Good night.
You know its funny. I had a section where they talk about incubuses in my trip to hell story and why the project was canceled. Well, don't need that anymore.
A rough translation from חבילות האפלות ביותר

The houres wherin principall divels may be bound, to wit, raised and restrained from dooing of hurt.

AMAYMON king of the east, Gorson king of the south, Zimimar king of the north, Goap king and prince of the west, may be bound from the third houre, till noone, and from the ninth houre till evening.
Marquesses may be bound from the ninth houre till compline, and from compline till the end of the daie.
Dukes may be hound from the first houre till noone; and cleare wether is to be observed.
Prelates may be bound in anie houre of the daie.
Knights from daie dawning, till sunne rising; or from evensong, till the sunne set.
A President may not be bound in anie houre of the daie, except the king, whome he obeieth, be invocated; nor in the shutting of the evening.
Counties or erles [Counts or Earls] may be bound at anie houre of the daie, so it be in the woods or feelds, where men resort not.

The forme of adjuring or citing of the spirits aforesaid to arise and appeare.

WHEN you will have anie spirit,you must know his name and office; you must also fast, and be cleane from all pollusion, three or foure daies before; so will the spirit be the more obedient unto you. Then make a circle, and call up the spirit with great intention,and holding a ring in your hand, rehearse in your owne name, and your companions (for one must alwaies be with you) this praier following, and so no spirit shall annoie you, and your purpose shall take effect. <(And note how this agreeth with popish charmes and conjurations.)>

(These pages in between were lost. Ripped from the book.)

Oh great and eternall vertue of the highest, which through disposition, these being called to judgement, Vaicheon, Stimulamaton, Esphares, Tetragrammaton, Olioram, Cryon [irion], Esytion, Existion, Eriona, Onela, Brasim, Noym, Messias, Soter, Emanuel, Sabboth [Sabaoth], Adonay, I worship thee, I invocate thee, I imploie thee with all the strength of my mind, that by thee, my present praiers, consecrations, and conjurations be hallowed: and whersoever wicked spirits are called, in the vertue of thy names, they may come togither from everie coast, and diligentlie fulfill the will of me the exorcist. Fiat, fiat, fiat, Amen.
Here now, none of that Daemon summoning. It's bad form.
Well its a good thing the circle and incantation where lost, isn't it?
Well things might get worse from here.
.....lost does not mean gone forever.

Incidentally, daemons from that bit of esoterica are personifications of humanity's stronger and less pleasant traits rather than simple evil forces of various sorts.
That they are. Most paint demons as such, but for the purposes of the story I am writing its a mix. Forces of evil and personifications of less pleasant traits as you put it. Cause well personifications lead to great asops they make for really shitty badguys as a trait is rather hard to fight with a sword.
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A Witch in Warfare

Polishing glass is much like working on pottery. With the advent of a potter's wheel, I was able to make far better glass lenses than could be achieved with molds and firing. Finding the right sort of clay and diatomaceous earths was harder. Not impossible, of course, the dwarvenkind were far more helpful when I showed them what could be achieved with it. Refining stickier high melting point wax had been far harder.

Felt, water, and just the right mixture of meerschaum allowed me to hand polish lenses to a level of clarity and smoothness that made fire polished lenses look pathetic. Paying someone to turn the wheel was the expensive part, and giving them half the profit was not so bad. It felt good to be making things again. Which made the interruption all the more annoying.

“There's a demon outside the town, miss!”

I immediately lifted the wooden dowel with the lens glued to it with the clear, almost plastic wax formed from melting the webs of certain spider-like monstrosities away from the spinning wheel, which slowed as the young man stopped push-pedaling. I looked up at the excitable little girl and spoke slowly, blinking at the sunlight outside the small workshop I'd appropriated. “What makes you say that, Henny?” I set the stick in a nearby holder and pulled out my belt pouch and handed my apprentice several silver coins, waving him off as Henrietta ran up and bounced up and down while holding onto my leg. Seated on a high stool as I was, I grabbed the table to keep my balance. She was only six, and her enthusiasm was understandable. Jorges grinned and slipped away, as unworried as I was, and for the same reason.
“She gots horns and a big metal stick and her skin is PURPLE!”

I smiled and lifted – with great effort – the child onto my lap, and combed her fantastically tangled hair out of her eyes. “She has horns, sweetie. Now, where is this so called demon girl? Did Lilly take a funny potion again?” She giggles and shook her head.

“Nah, she's wearing more clothes than Lilly does! With flowers and fires and weird things on 'em.” That was kind of different, since multiple dyes and embroidery were less than easily available in TeeGee unless imported. The big metal stick was unusual as well. “Are you gonna go cast spells on her and make her nice like Lilly?!” She was terribly excited by the idea of me casting spells, since she, like many of the children, had heard I was a witch.

“No, honey, I'm not. That would be terribly rude of me. And if the Knights are letting her be, she probably isn't a demon, you know?” I set her down and stood, picking up a few things from my worktable and placing them in various pouches. I'd actually commissioned what was called a spell component pouch by most of the Outrealmers, though in reality it was just a purse with lots of extra pouches that hung off my belt. At her crestfallen expression, I sighed. “Well, all right, if it makes you happy, I'll go cast a spell on the weird demon girl.” It probably wouldn't be anything spectacular, but a not-quite-a-demon was a curiosity, and the fact that the Knights Harem hadn't done anything about her was enough of an indicator that she wasn't really a demon, or like Lilly she was relatively harmless.
Dealing with the Fey may have made me a tad bit jaded, perhaps.

“Yay!” Henny raced outside and I could hear her breathlessly explaining to her friends, whom apparently had been waiting to hear from her what the witch was going to do, that I would go and catch the demon. I smacked myself in the head for having encouraged her to gather an audience. With a sigh, I gathered a few other things, and my staff, and stepped outside to the cheers and hugs of the gaggle of children, many of whom I had babysat at one time or another. The barrage of questions and claims and statements was answered as patiently and calmly as I could, but the variety of things I was being told made me worry quite a bit.

I walked with them to one of the home guard, and politely asked that he take them to where they had been watching the strange visitor, with a gentle admonishment not to let them sneak off without their parents to go meet the 'demon girl.' He grinned, understanding, as I did, that if there really was a danger the knights would have dealt with her a while ago.

I did not voice the thought that something else might be happening that caused the Knights to not interfere.
Since we were where the children had been watching from, I took a look for myself, and I could quickly see why they'd say she was a demon. She was sitting by a tree outside the castle, not quite in town limits, a small cask next to her, and a long metal pole topped by a rather brutal looking mace or morning star head on it. There was a knight nearby, keeping an eye on her, and a couple of unconscious people laid out on the grass some distance from where she sat. Of them, three were wearing simpler armor and two other actual plate armor, though none were wearing blazons, tabards, or other indicators of knighthood. Much more impressive were the dents in both sets of plate armor, nothing life threatening, but certainly the evidence of superhuman strength. There was superficial blood on a face, and she was sill being allowed to sit there, so presumably no deaths had occurred.
Her appearance was remarkable, and for someone who lived in Castle Waifu to say so was unusual in and of itself. Her hair was long enough that it was piled next to her as she sat, one large ring of dark metal, likely cast iron wrapped in it. It was also a dark purple color. Her clothing was spectacularly colorful, obviously dyed silk depicting a phoenix in flight on the black background. The flowers were actually knots that held her half-robe closed. It wasn't quite a kimono, but it was fairly close; it looked more like a cheongsam crossed with a jacket. She wasn't wearing skirts or pants, but something like shorts; her wrists and ankles had thick shackle-like bands about them, but there was something odd about them that I couldn't make out at this distance. Her skin was more of a light lavender color. She did have horns, but unlike any demon I'd ever heard tell of, they were straight, and jutted directly from her brow directly above her eyebrows, which were also odd even from this distance. They had a faint sheen to them that hinted at translucence or a glow. Her eyes did not glow, and looked human enough from this distance.

I admonished the children to be good for Officer O'Banion, much to their giggles and the confused look of the guard I'd just renamed randomly, and headed for my home. I took a deep breath and slipped inside, closing the door behind me. Jaculye was there, coiled and looped and tangled along the far wall, cradling the dully glowing egg in her arms as she 'laid' along some of the overstuffed body-sized pillows that substituted for a couch for her. I'd had to get rid of much of the furniture to accommodate the massive serpentine body of the lamia, reducing it to pillows and my cot, as well as a wardrobe. Most of my personal things now resided at the workshop, though honestly they really were meant for the work I did.
“Silver,” she said with a smile. “You are home earlier than usual.” I flushed, largely because she'd taken to only wearing her lower shawl when at home. “Did something go wrong, or go right?” Her brilliant brass eyes followed me as I walked to the large ceramic pot that hung high over the fiercely glowing coals of the fireplace. Her knowing smile was discomfiting as well.

“Neither, to be honest. Something showed up, and I'm going to take a closer look.” I glanced inside the pot, the sheet of glass I used as a lid transparent enough in enough places that I could see the pot roast and vegetables were not done yet. “What do you know about non-demons with horns? She's not a Holstaurus; she looks very human except for being incredibly strong and having horns. And a complexion more like that of flowers. “

Shifting slightly, Jaculye frowned faintly. “Is she a dragon? They can take that sort of appearance, and they tend to retain their strength.” She set the egg amid her lower coils and slithered over to me; I turned around to face her, trying very hard to keep my eyes above her collarbone. “You look like your dressed for travel, are you leaving?”
I shook my head and brushed her dreadlocks behind her shoulder, not being very successful at keeping my eyes up. It suddenly occurred to me that I had a penchant for playing with other women's and girl's hair that I really had to keep a handle on. “No, she's outside the castle, but not in the town itself. I am going to go have a talk with her, because she's got a knight keeping an eye on her but isn't leaving. Also, the kids told me about her.”

That got Jaculye's attention. “Really? You put much stock in the children's words.”

“They see things in a different way, and their sense of urgency is sometimes more accurate in predicting what's going on than most of the adults' can be. I'm more likely to pay attention to a child's warning than any normal person's, human or not.” I smiled up at her. “Though, they're not really worried, just excited they might get to see me cast a spell.”

Jaculye laughed softly, hissing through her teeth in pulses. “It is good that they see a witch as a force for good in their lives. So many casters of magic are fearsome and powerful creatures in this world.” Magic's potency and the scarcity of powerful wielders made my hedge magics something impressive. There were few enough in the thousands of refugees from the other world that had them that we were all considered remarkable. “Will you be bringing her here?” Her inordinate curiosity made me glare at her. Her expression wasn't jealous – if anything it was almost eager. I blushed, which just made me more angry.
Suppressing the anger was difficult; I didn't need someone I was attracted to playing matchmaker. There were reasons I didn't seek out a waifu. I had to suppress the anger because high emotions meant difficulty breathing. “Don't be silly. I'm just curious and if I can make sure she's not trouble, it's useful of me.” Her eyes glittered with amusement, and I sighed. “There's plenty of waifus in the TeeGee, so it's not like I need to find someone special.” I drained a mug of sickeningly potent sun tea and took up my staff once more as I left.

I overheard her as I walked out, murmuring that I already had, but I pretended she'd said it too quietly in a language I didn't understand. Reptilian does not lend itself to whispering, and it is a great language for writing esoterica in.

There were a number of people along the castle walls and windows looking down towards the trees and fields by the time I'd made my way outside; as I approached the knight, whose blazon I recognized as stemming from one of the various supplemental deities of TeeGee Outrealm legend, I could see that the horned girl had put several more people out of commission, though some of the first batch were up and stirring, one bemoaning the condition of his armor. “Hail, good sir knight,” I murmured and he smiled wryly.

“It's just us chickens here.”
“Amen. What's she up to?” Now that I was closer, she was clearly several inches shorter than I was, though more nicely curved. I'm a bloody rail compared to most women. Her shoes made her about my hight, because they were simple sandals, made from painted blocks of inch thick wood that had another block set in the middle sideways, giving her what were effectively stilts. They were also hell to balance on, so she was skilled at wearing them, especially with the massive metal club she was using as a weapon.

“Not much really, drinking and beating the crap out of challengers. I'm just here to make sure that nothing gets too rambunctious. She laughed at me when I said she was accused of being a demon, and we've had a couple of experts out here already that say she's not a demon.” He shrugged mildly. “So, as long as she doesn't kill anyone and no one tries to kill her or mob her, I'm just enjoying watching her thrash some would be heroes and warning off the idiots who don't know any better. Good for deflating their egos if they try her though.” He sized up her weapon. “She's damn quick with that thing.”

That thing was a twisted, six or seven foot long bar of wrought iron about an inch thick, topped with ten inches of steel rod about three inches around. The head of the mace was octagonally shaped, with four silver pyramid-shaped studs on each face. I also took the opportunity to study the shackles. They were definitely shackles, each one sporting two or three links from iron chains, but they were not rusted. Nor were they riveted closed; they were one piece, bent around each limb, then squeezed shut; at that point whomever had done so had apparently pinched pieces of the metal together, twisted the bits off, and then smoothed them over until there were little rosettes of shiny metal in a line along each band of black metal. The Fey would have been terrified.
Up close she was incredibly pretty, in an intrinsically exotic sort of way. Her skin was lavender colored, her lips a deep shade of red-violet. Her nails and hair and eyebrows were all the same shade of what I could now see was indigo. Her eyebrows were peculiar, being simple lines – not hair, not plucked, but literally sharply pointed lines that arched over each eye. A peculiar symbol was etched in red-violet along her forehead, reminiscent of a closed eye done in an extremely stylized and lopsided manner. It reminded me of a closed Eye of Horus done sideways and by a Chinese calligrapher rather than an Egyptian one.

Her horns were not translucent after all, but of a dull pearly color that had a velveteen look to them, a thin layer of her lavender skin that coated each of them, like young bucks had. Opening her eyes she glanced sidelong at a young warrior in heavy plate armor, his gaggle of flunkies and admirers gathered to see his prowess. It wasn't that unusual, there were often people from other countries who wandered through TeeGee to trade, and sometimes, well, they enjoyed the local scenery and party life. Her gaze was nothing more than a casual dismissal of someone noisy approaching, but it gave me the opportunity to get a good look at her eyes. She had round pupils which were a deep, dark crimson, almost brown, like carnelian, which changed to dark red as they spread. There wasn't any discernible differentiation between iris and pupil, presuming she had either to be differentiated. Her eyes were slightly rhomboid as well, rather than being almond shaped or oblong. It gave her a more feral look than even some of the Felim or Kanin had.
The fact that she was wearing tight shorts endeared me to her at once in a world where dresses were the norm for anything female outside of TeeGee.

“Oh, this should be fun,” muttered the young knight as he headed off the man and his entourage.

I remained where I was, the shadow of the castle protecting me from the rays of the dreaded sun. I was leaning on my staff when I noted she was looking at me, rather than the knight or the young idiots from afar. I remained leaning on my staff and let her take as frank an appraisal of me as I had her. Her eyes widened, and her eyebrows….they didn't raise, not like normal eyebrows would. They literally were drawn up, the ends almost staying stationary. They weren't hair at all – they seemed like the same keratin her nails....perhaps better called claws....were made out of. Which made me wonder exactly what her horns were made out of.

She hastily gulped down enough of the cask that her cheeks burned, and she went into an immediate coughing fit. My own eyebrows raised, because I was fairly certain that what was in the cask probably wasn't water, or even a kind of ale or beer. She stood up, and I noted that she got one foot under her and lifted her entire body weight on that foot before setting the other down. I knew how to do that, and it was not a weak person's task; I may be sickly, but I walked everywhere, which meant I had some damn strong legs. I suspected she could crush men in armor with hers. She also seemed perfectly stable on her stilt-shoes. They were similar to geta, but taller and without a heel support. Her toenails were the same indigo, which meant she either had a lot of dye, or it was natural. As natural as was possible for her.
Leaving the cask where she had been sitting, along with a thick blanket and a small package, she picked up her club or long mace and idly whirled it one handed as she watched the knight talking to the strangers. Which was an illusion; she actually just twisted her wrist and gave the illusion of making it flip over her hand and thus in a long spin. That was telling; she knew how to use a staff, and I suspected anyone expecting her to just hit them with the end was in for an unpleasant lesson. I noticed the butt had a large ring of iron welded to it and from it jutted a five inch long triangular spike of metal; the brownish tone of it suggested titanium to me, which might have been synonymous with adamantine, treated with the right other metals. It was definitely meant for punching holes in thick armor or hide, because it was thick enough at the base that it couldn't be knocked off easily or bend.

I strongly suspected the haft wasn't simply iron, or if it was iron that it was enchanted not to bend too much. Some of those dents she had made were pretty deep.

“Sir Reynard, my companions and I,” the young Mirthterrahen warrior stated, “are here to drive that demon away, since obviously no one of your caliber considers themselves worthy of the task.” The knight smirked, which I give him credit for; technically an insult of that magnitude could have gotten the kid pimp slapped into oblivion by any knight outside of TeeGee. “Surely someone of your so very magnanimous nature – given that you live with all sorts here – can understand that it is for the best of all.”
The group of human hangers-on giggled and chortled at the youthful warriors scathing commentary. “Sorry, no can do. One on one only, straight up beatsticking. You can use whatever weapons you like, but she's made it clear she's not here to kill or be killed, just to have a little fun. I'm just here to keep people from getting too badly hurt on either side.” The very soul of TeeGee diplomacy. “She's been perfectly polite so far, so I've no reason to deny her the right to a little brawling.”

“Well, sir, I shall have to champion your cause for you if you're too much the dandy to get your sword bloody. Fair ladies and good friends, I shall return anon.” The way Sir Reynard's mouth twitched either meant he was biting the inside of his cheek or he didn't trust this asshole any more than I did. The demon-like girl stepped away from the tree she'd adopted as her picnic place and walked out a ways. What I had taken for peculiarly large ear decorations were in fact a pair of triangular ears that jutted from the sides of her head, fixed. They were the ears of something that wasn't worried about anything sneaking up behind it, and apparently quite suited for distance listening.

He drew his sword, which was an ornate piece of work and hardly used or magically sharp, because a sword that shiny couldn't be anything but new or enchanted. The knight wandered back over to me as his companions whispered and the girls made fearful expressions and worried over their handsome noble. “That kid's going to get his ass kicked,” he confided to me. “His 'adventuring troupe' is little more than some noble brats slumming it up. I'm thinking that his father is some kind of merchant who's doing business in town.”
“Well, let's hope she goes easy on him, because the last thing we need is enough of an incident that Mirthterrah decided to do something about the rogues here.” He gave me a look. “Rogue barony, not thieves.”

His eyes widened as he realized what I was getting at. “And he has plenty of witnesses....”

“You and I count as enough witnesses. No one is going to doubt my word or the word of a sworn knight.” It was hopeful on my part, more than factual. “Why is she here, and not in the city? Tavern brawls aren't so bad, and I doubt she's the strongest creature around.” His dubious look was not lost on me as I watched the bold young hero approach the wicked demon. She gave a light toss to the pole-arm she held and gripped the lower end in a wide grip, showing no strain at all despite the obvious imbalance of the weapon. I had been right, she was holding it more like a staff fighter than someone who intended to simply bludgeon someone to death by main strength.

He took a parade rest stance and kept half an eye on the hero's friends, several of whom were whispering to one another and giving one another elbows and making gestures. Not rude or magical ones, but ones that looks to me like those made for planning and ideas. “She said she's not allowed in civilized places unless taken in by a stranger she can't defeat. Some kind of ritual for her people. She's not an outcast, just a wanderer. Says she's barely an adult.”

“What's her name?” He grinned and jerked his head towards the duo.
“Foul fiend, I, Lord Garrond, son of Baron Duscovne and heir to the title of Hordingrove's Lands and the throne of same, challenge you to a duel to the d....uh, end!” I smiled wryly at the knight who was struggling not to laugh at his amazing delivery. “Give me your name, fiend, that I may know whom I smite this day!” He was shouting at her, which was mainly for the benefit of his friends, since he was standing ten feet from her. Which incidentally put him in easy reach of her weapon if she decided to take a step forward and brain the poor bastard, which would have been mercy on her part for us.

“Not Worthy.”

He sputtered for nearly a minute as his friends gasped at her temerity. “What did you say, you blasphemous hell-whore?” His face was actually turning red, which didn't say much for his heart, I thought.

“That's my name, you dolt. Not Worthy.” She rested the pole on her shoulder, though she still held it in both hands; if he had any sort of training at all he should have known it wasn't a fearless or casual dismissal of his skill, though a novice could have mistaken it as such. “You're one of those idiot Mirthens, heads bigger than their asses and women as useless as their leaders. I know dogs that are smarter than you.”

The knight sighed. “I wish she wouldn't call them names like that.”

“He started it, she's allowed to call him whatever she likes. I doubt any of what she's called him so far amounts to worse than fiend and whore.” The knight grunted, grudgingly agreeing with me.
“Have at you!” he roared, telegraphing his blow from miles away. Ten feet was million miles to a trained martial artist, and to someone with a pole taller than her opponent it may as well have been light years. I was no connoisseur of Western - well what had once been Western – swordplay, but I knew that you didn't run up and start swinging before you got to the opponent. She stood there and swept the mace down, then stepped forward as it met his ankles, the bar of the mace smashing his legs together and sending him face first into the ground. To his credit he kept his sword up and didn't impale himself. She stopped the mace just after it made impact, a feat impressive all by itself, and then stood upright again, the mace once more 'resting' on her shoulder.

Not Worthy patiently waited for him to get to his knees, and then to his feet. He spat grass and dirt, and his face was a mask of hate. What made it worse was the cheers from the castle. Garrond looked up, and all the blood drained from his face as he realized his humiliation had been witnessed by over two dozen children and enough adults in Castle Waifu that the tale would be throughout TeeGee in a day if not before night fell.

“That's not good,” I murmured, and glanced at his companions, one of whom was already fingering his own sword, and a few others that were definitely looking to join in the fight. The knight took a single glance and his expression became stony.
“You think you can keep them from killing each other? I'd better head that off before someone does something more stupid than he did.” He set his hand to the hilt of his sword and rolled his shoulders.

I sighed. “Yes, but my methods won't be liked.” He nodded, not worried about it, and walked over to the group, setting himself between them and the duelists. I walked a little closer to the fight, not liking this situation at all. But then, when has that ever stopped me from doing stupid things? Garrond's new expression made my heart sink, and felt the distinct urge to call the fight there and then.

Especially when I overheard the young Lord of Hordingrove say quietly, with no bravado or theatrics, “I'm going to kill you for that, bitch.”

I'm guessing the incubus counterpart was the oversexed up warlord? Well, Geiselus did say it was hijacked...

Huh, must be a different edition.

Very nice, very East.
I see you took the wanderer suggestions.
Now class, can you guess what an Oni is doing this far west of the Silk Wall?
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Somewhere quietly glistening.

]K: Family now Lovecraft-threat. Commence immediate extract. Have you found exits?
B: All across continent. Trail leads south, continues in Wastelands. Will research FL further.
K: Understood, will update maps to match. Continue Journal reports. How was politicking?
B: Irrelevant. Fungal legions march. Also, accidentally a Bioshock. Lines drawn when left.
K: Cover your tracks. Surface world unprepared. On scale of Pig to Great, how bad?
B: Great War level. Plus side: too busy fighting. Minus side: both tech’d up.
K: Problematic. Rodeo Red both. Try pulling 1984. If fails, contain and retreat.
B: Understood. Request change from coded gemstones. Caravans suspicious thefts.
K: Agreed. Recut and fenced to cover op costs. Kept largest as "museum piece".
It got the same thing across. They are either went crazy warlord or died from side efects.
>Well it be nice to Mention IT!

I did! http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive/20887555/#p20899791

Also, holy shitballs at that wall of text.

You're both up!

Now, comment on my latest piece! Writers need feedback!
I always enjoy K & B's dialogues.
The matrix bit was a bit heavy. And I think some of the parts dragged on a bit. But overall it was as enjoyable as most everything else you've written.
Your descriptions are breathtaking. I can almost visualize what's happening as full theatrical scenes. Do you practice martial arts yourself?

Also, I'm making a prediction about what our mysterious lady is. I think that she's an Oni.
>get back from school
>still need to do chem homework
you know what, fuck it, knife
even with financial aid i won't be able to afford another semester, i'm gonna read this
Still reading through yours. Seems good so far.

Can't say too much, I'm supposed to be studying for my CCNA.
Yes, I do practice. Tai chi chuan, tai chi sword work, ch'in-na practice, and iado swordsmanship, as well as staff work. I only excel at staff and Tai Chi, because I haven't the stamina for much else anymore.

The writing I practice a lot harder at.
I didn't know that there was a swordwork form of Tai chi. Iaijutsu is fun, but I can never get my legs to work right for the sitting Kata.
Sword and staff are both forms that the style I learned teaches. It was apparently not supposed to be taught outside of China - I never knew that those 'you are forbidden to teach' clauses were real and people keep up on them. It was fairly weird.
My own teacher thinks there's probably a dozen or so styles that still exist that nobody knows about because only 4-6 people are practicing them. He's still mad about the techniques used to forge swords being lost.
As technology advances, everything we make gets worse. Unless it relies on the new tech to be made, those things haven't had enough time to decline in quality.
Overall everything we make gets better. Some of it loses quality yes, but for the most part everything gets better. Medicine, metal alloys, chemistry, etc. etc.
But we can't construct buildings like the Greeks/Romans did. So many things have been lost that would make things we have right now so much better.
We can make them, we just choose not to.

We have access to better construction methods that they never had, like metal reinforcement, for example.
I've never heard anything indicating that we can build stone structures with some sort of mortar. Now the concrete, we can do more with that than the Roman probably dreamed.
Without mortar. I think I've lost my mind.
Thats.....a lot of references.
I liked it.
My gripe would obviously be the length.
You can do this with glass. You polish both surfaces of the same material to as close to flat as possible. You press them together, and they make a contact seal, which is nearly impossible to break with simple pressure. If you allow air unto the seal, it breaks entirely, but huge stone blocks wouldn't allow for that to happen at all - it's devilishly difficult to do with pieces of class only inches across.
Glass, not class, rather.
Actually the Romans did have a form of concrete, and even had a way of using it underwater. As for the stone structures without mortar, all we need is a little application of mathematics and the right kind of stone.


Also, a TVTropes article you might enjoy. Check the "Real Life" section.
>finally catch up on reading
>tvtropes link
this just isn't fair
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>Real life section
>Implying that the real life section isn't shitthatdidn'thappen.txt
I know the Romans had concrete. I even mentioned that.
So it's not completely lost. we just can't do it on the same scale as some dude in a toga with a hammer and a chisel. Modern humans suck at that stuff.
So any and all lukers out there. Resuming work on The Trials of Magical Girl Alice. Anyone who wants to participate hop on over. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bi5xq9_bceHAgrN_NS1hx-2_yWjbvOrox2RHENaZvpw/edit
>wayward son
>can't hear the song
have to post this

so the sentinel is back in obsidos?

ok, no more doubt, these guys are outrealmers

never stop writing, your stuff is amazing (no offense everyone else)
No mention of a Boy named Sue. For shame /tg/ for shame. You must all commit horrible Sudoku

It isn't that we CAN'T do it, it's just that doing that shit on any major scale is so ridiculously expensive and impractical that nobody bothers to do it except for the occasional novelty piece.
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fuck, i completely forgot about the girl sounding name over all the matrix stuff
Forgetting Johny Cash can have no excuses
Small time.
And don't forget that stuff lasts till someone blows it up.
i suppose the fact that i have never heard the song until 10 minutes ago just hurts my case, doesn't it
Yes it does. But on the positive side your sudoku is good
Sudoku are easy. Until you get a nearly blank one, then you have to go through all the possible solutions. It's like calculus without the math
It's not a matter of not stopping. It a matter of write or go mad.
my highschool junior english teacher always gave newspapers to the class and i did the sudoku, and then in senior year my calc teacher gave extra credit for turning in sudoku he made. i got shittons of practice.
also, my best expert mode minesweeper was 114 seconds after about 4000 games
woohoo, more writefaggotry
>or go mad.
well that would make you an even better wizard...
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Man I missed quite a bit today. On the bright side, I got story ideas piling up, so I can get back to writing by Friday.
Sharp and shiny.
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Yeah, I'm considering writing a story that's just Al spazzing out over swords.
could easily bisect a harem knight wearing full plate with a simple vertical slash.
Keep it up and I send Lilly after you.
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At least it will cut through anything except good Sake....
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How about a tachi?
Or was that cognac.....
Alcohol is the perfect armor?
Actually, in a world with magic, some of the bullshit around katana would make sense. If you can use magic to make a sword that's arbitrarily sharp and that won't break, swords focused on slashing through things as hard and fast as possible would be the best type of sword by far.
Vertical slashes are considered the most basic attack. If you cannot block it, you deserve to be bisected.
Thats why GearHeart has a sword of hate thats sort of a bastard/scimitar thing and its as sharp as he is angry. Everytime a hippie talks he could cut the world in two.
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if you're going to do that then you better do it right, katanagatari style, cheerio
you see this fucker right here? the katana he tried to steal was called Blunt and it killed him so fast that he didn't even realize he had been bisected until the guy that killed him told him so
Can we borrow you for our experimental fission project? It'll provide power for the whole country.
Implying thats not his finishing move. Fission!
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How fluffed out is the desert, I wonder? I've an idea I'm working on right now, and I'd like to know if there's room for another civilization down there.
With Orks and Knolls down there anything that lives there would have to be tought
Tough is doable. Anything else I might want to know?
Slavers out there. Castle Demon Reach (Where GearHeart lives) is on the edge in the mountains to the north. Sir Andrew is out there sometime around 6-7 AA and thats it I think
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Fuck me, I don't know what sword that is exactly. Pretty old though. Here's a definite tachi.
Oooh, slavers. Might be fun.

Okay, looking at the map, I think I might be able to squeeze in a smallish empire or something.
aren't there various giants in the thousand sands that are treated like messengers of god?
Supposedly but there has been no mention of them as I remember.
i've written a bit about a cyclops smith in serrid but i think that's about it
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Welllll, they are wastes for a reason, right?

I'll try to pull back. It was very easy to copy/paste. (mentally)

Exhibit A, Obsidos, City of Black Glass.

You'll be humming a different tune, once I get serious about code work...

Speaking of which, brick to the window.
If anyone wants to write the countuing tails of Alice the Barmaid come here. Or if you want to do rogue trader also come here https://docs.google.com/document/d/1bi5xq9_bceHAgrN_NS1hx-2_yWjbvOrox2RHENaZvpw/edit
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A strip of paper wrapped around a bloodstained brick, thrown at a TeeGee message route. Brought back to the city by priority flights and quickly investigated.

Analysis proves the blood is over a dozen types of non-human origin. The brick and paper disappeared from holding soon after being brought in.

Carved into the brick were:

NGMA Wr B – Roman-155 - 2/14/11

The paper strip says:

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what could it mean?

I'll give you til 9pm, AEST.

annnnd GO!
I'll let someone else deal in logic. I deal in more ephemeral thought processes.
Looks like the old Caesar shift
Also if I had to guess A = E
And Im an idiot I need a brick and a strip of paper.
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this could be bad
Here's one hint.

Are you British WWII Intelligence? If so, do you remember how Roman numerals work?
>Are you British WWII Intelligence?
no, but red and white britfag may be
>If so, do you remember how Roman numerals work?
barely, mostly thanks to video game titles and for the last decade or so i haven't had access to more than a couple portable systems that people brought with them (so happy i brought a psp with FFT)
forgot name, polite sage for adding nothing
Many moons ago I was part of the Roman Empire. Alas, that only lasted for two years.
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The sun.

Dear lord, the goddamn sun. Was there some invisible jackass with a magnifying glass focusing in on me or something? I thought I could tolerate heat pretty well, but this was fucking ridiculous. Dammit, serves me right for not paying attention to the map of the Desert. Serves me right for coming here in the first place.

Seriously, I can’t even recall why I thought swinging down south to the Desert of a Thousand Sands was a good idea. It was a fucking desert, and it isn’t like I’d have a Dune buggy or anything to make traveling easier than on horseback.

And on that topic, sure, the joke is funny at first, but hearing “I BEEN THROUGH THE DESERT ON A HORSE WITH NO NAME” blare through your head ceaselessly for two full days gets old fast.

Deserts really suck. Every sandy, dry, hot, barren dune can go fuck itself. I’m sure me and the horse agreed on this one. The sooner we figured out where the hell we were and how to leave, the better.

But currently, all we could do was trudge up this damn dune. This goddamn huge dune. If nothing else, I’d have the strongest motherfucking calves in the world by the end of this. Could probably kick straight through Castle Waifu or some shi--

“Oh look. An Oasis.”

I’m not sure which one of us got down that dune first.
Of course, running in the desert isn’t something that lasts long, no matter who or what you are.
By the time we actually reached the oasis, well, we weren’t doing so hot. Practically collapsed into the pool of water. Both of us took long drinks, the horse from the pool, and I from my waterskin. Thank god for Oasises. Oases? Whichever.

After spending roughly an hour in the merciful patch of green and moist, we started off again, heading in what I discerned to be in the general direction of north. I made sense, the desert was south of more hospitable lands, so putting the sun to my left was a good idea, right?

Oh god, I was wrong. I was so wrong it physically hurt. A word of warning to all you adventurers that fancy getting lost in the desert: Do NOT go near that wierd shiny rock by the oasis. Stay the FUCK away from the wierd shiny rock by the oasis.

“But it could be valuable minerals I could sell”, No it fucking isn’t! STAY THE HELL AWAY FROM THE SHINY SHIT IN THE DESERT.
Why, you ask? Well. Let me ask you a question in return.

Do you honestly think you could handle getting attack by a goddamn Steelix?
We didn’t have any warning. Real life isn’t kind like that, even in the magical fantasy land that we fa/tg/uys call home. One second we were passing by an meter high spire of metal in the desert, headed towards a dune that might provide a good vantage point.

The next? A preposterously massive metallic serpent rises from the sand and nearly eats the both of us!

This was, as you could imagine, a VERY bad situation. Here we were, up against sixty feet of angry metal death, with no way to fight back and only barely able to run away without getting bitten. If there was any time I regretted my travels, my choice to not stick with what would become Teegee, it was probably right then.

Actually, if we want to be more specific, it was right when the snake managed to trip me up with it’s tail, sending me face-first into the sand. Pushing myself up, I turned over, trying to get to my feet--

Only to find the serpent lunging towards me, maw agape, showcasing more than a few large, scary looking teeth. I wish I could say I kept my cool here, but no. This was it. Game over. I mcfucked up, and now I was going to get mcfucked up for it.

Imagine my surprise when a freaking bolt of lightning explodes in the thing’s face.

Stopped cold, the Serpent was subjected to two more shots before it decided it to be not worth the effort. At roughly the same time, my body reached a similar conclusion on consciousness.

Falling back, the last thing I felt was the gentle grasp of someone catching me, softly lowering me to the ground even as a slim, tallish shadow fell over me. I managed to grunt a quick “thank you”, before the blackness claimed me.
am i hearing giants?
That shoot lightnign?
Oh I just remembered. Legend says an evil witch is responsible for creating the desert
honestly i pictured them somewhat like hephaestus, the guys that make all the super magic shit for the other big guys. it's what i've been trying to make my cyclops smith like (though i'll admit it could be easy to miss in my writing since i've only done a handful of sentences with him, i may need to flesh him out more)
>one dickass cyclops creates steelixes
Tell me does he live in a cave that he barley fits in and does he make swords? Or does he live behind a mountain and make shields.

>Horse with no name.
You, you I like
not my guy

no cave, proper building. but does have to hunch over a lot. makes lots of stuff. hang on and i'll write something up real quick
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So I finally got around to writing my Cyclops smith, Genz, and asking why he was always so willing to do work for me at the drop of a hat, and this is what I got back.

“When I was a child, my father told me tales of our ancestors. How those that came before us crafted weapons so great they were used by the Gods themselves against demons, titans, and horrors not from this existence. Now, in Serrid, the people treat me like an agent of the Gods because of my ancestry, and ask that I make for them great weapons and armors, but these people do not want weapons and armor. They want nothing more than trophies so that they may flaunt their wealth. The things I craft for these nobles will likely never see War. This is why I craft for you. I believe that one day you will do great things, and I believe that as the Gods look down upon you they shall see you bearing my work, and how that which I made played a role in Greatness, so that when the day comes that I pass from this mortal world, the Gods will allow me to work alongside my ancestors at the Forge of Creation.”
Really? A witch!
Thankfully, that's a lucky break.
No, not you A Witch, this is a story of the Amber Witch of the Wastes.
Right after I post the solution to the code. And the story between it.
there we go. gave him a bit of a religious character but not super complicated. also opens up the possibility of him moving to TeeGee if some world shaking stuff makes him move from Serrid. though considering the cost of his stuff (materials alone, this guy is best or nothing) only the knights would be able to get work done. and now that i think about it i don't think artorias ever said where the enchants on his gear were from, so if you're listening feel free to use Genz in your story
Lem I have worry some news. I found these pouring over books from my last trip to hell. You remember the old key, right?


...you'd better have the translation ready for us later.
See this is the thing about codes. I can't wrap my head around Enigma but other ones pfft. By the way good job with the NGMA bit. Can't believe I missed that. ALso yes the translation is ready. I'll post it some time After you post yours.
I don't think I'm going to update this thread until I've figured it out. I like a good puzzle.
This one is either really hard or really easy. I learned it back in the 5th grade. Its possible to solve without the key but it is difficult. My recommendation is to start with a frequency analysis or find the key.
Caesarian Cipher then? Excellent.
Same person. Either that or simple letter transposition.
Nothing simple about this letter transposition. Its based off of the Caesarian Cipher but its a much more complicated version. I'll give every one about 20 hours if that sounds alright.
Also by the way Clover just to have some fun

It ain't fair if you misspell words
God dam by the time you respond Ill be well asleep. Also go Broncos
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Yay, you are lucky winner!

It's not misspelling, it's word limit.

And, now the solution.
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NGMA Wr B = Coding method
Enigma Machine, Setting Wehrmacht B
Trivia: Sent from B

155 in Roman Numerals = CLV
Reels start at C, L, V
Trivia: Clover Journal message

2/14/11 = Not a date, position settings
Initial Positions at 2, 14, 11.
Triva: B N K, messages for B & K.



Urgent. Codes intercepted. Ambushed at exit. Switching to double locked.
The fact that some asshole decided to encode using an ENIGMA machine, means they had to make one.

Fuck that shit.

Would have decoded had it not have been posted when I was at work.
Well, I can definitely promise that I'll never use that code again.

Throwaway ciphers, how do they work?

Also, the key for Gearheart's message is infuriating.

I've tried harem, knight, rubears, and the fact that there is a hidden t=o sign at the end of his message just taunts me!


Screw this, I'm going to do one of my many assignments.

I have too much crap to do then break random codes. The fact I already knew you were using Enigma meant I was going to try and crack yours (If you cna figure out the cipher you're on easy street with enigma).

Gonna try and finish up the Icy Tale tonight to post in a new thread.
Okay, finally got started on a writing project I'm certain I can finish. Should have it posted after work.
You may be over thinking about the key. In the vein of fairness its hidden in plain view and was a bit tricky to write in.
Did you try pandacats?
One last clue before the work day consumes me. You said the key in your post. You wrote it with out even realizing.
Hint: Look at the spacing and number of letters on each section. GearHeart is going to be mad when he fines out I gave you this clue about the key.
I picked up on the meaning, thank you.
Rage. The key is rage.
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“Daddy, will you teach me how to fight like that?”

I don’t think I’ve ever heard words that made me happier than those. My five year old son, Micheal, had been watching me practice in the training yard at Teegee, not so unusual since I had little else to do with my time during the day when there wasn’t an expedition or group of recruits to train, and my children would often come along to watch after they were done with their studies for the day.

I’d been going over tactics specific to combating the demons that our knights had been encountering more often of late, something I admit I should have started teaching years prior but didn’t feel it was worth the time in initial training until after I lost 3 recruits to a Capra demon in an ill-fated encounter. His question caught me off guard, I’ll admit. Amanda, Dusk, and Gwynavere had all expressed interest in weapons training, of course, but none of them had shown interest in my particular style. Gwynavere and Amanda both favored normal sized swords and shields while Dusk favored her twin daggers and Juniper preferred hand to hand, so while I could teach them the basics, I couldn’t teach them much beyond that. Thankfully I had Melena to help Gwyn and Amanda, but I’d still have to look for someone to help the other two.
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Anyway, I handed him one of the longswords from the weapons rack, a pretty massive weapon for a child, I admit, but it was pretty close to scale. First thing was to show him how to grip the weapon properly. There were 3 different grips I ran him through, though I think it will still be a while before he can thumb the blade properly. Half-swording and some of the more advanced tactics I would just leave for later, but grip and stance were important.

As I was going through all this, Sif was sleeping while his much smaller siblings were doing their best to keep everyone else in the training field distracted. Those things were a menace, I swear to you. At least they don’t steal ham though. Cursed wolves…oh, where were I again? Oh yes, training!

He struggled a bit with the sword at first, but a few pounds of metal is nothing once you get the hang of it. I started to run him through a few of the attack and defense drills, but before long it was time to go home. It was Priscilla’s turn to cook and she usually made something particularly good. As much as I love Karrigan, she can’t cook for the life of her. She can tell one herb from another even through three layers of coffee beans, but she can’t do much besides sell them.

On the way home I was looking at my children and thinking that we were going to need a bigger house before long. Five children and six giant or soon to be giant wolves were a bit more than what my house could handle, even if the fireplace in the bedroom made things pretty cozy in the winter.
Someone get this man an Architect, STAT!
Going to build a castle of your own?
Actual there is a formula for solving the enigma machine. Also is anyone still trying to solve my code cause I already have the next one ready. But it can wait.
I find cooking egg rolls to be far more interesting than cracking codes.
To each their own. But I did make the next one easier.
I also have new found respect for the chinese people at the local chinese restaurants.
Show me the code
well I need to type it in so this might take a minute. I did it in my head.
And all my hope is gone.
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Hey, here are the moves of the game so far in case you forgot.

And my move is A5-B7
Um... [ ] to ?.
So random person on the council doesn't really mater. But for Fun lets say its To Lem as he is go to council guy.
C2-H should read as C2-H5.
Weren't you already doing that?
Well I don't know anyone else it would make sense to send a message to. Least this message. The next one will be from someone diffrent.
All I see is a chess game I can't follow.
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This might help you get the picture.
Hey guys? It's been a hell of a while.

You guys have really moved on. XCom's been holding my attention lately... Sorry.

Do you guys still want me in the club?
Xcom is a hell of a game so we forgive you. So write something up why don't ya.
And I archived the thread. As we are in Auto Sage. I think its 300 right? Can never remember.
300 is autosage
So it's not actually a chess game, cause unless I'm reading it wrong, those are a hell of a lot of illegal moves...

Why did I ever decide to write things in code?
Cause you didn't think things through. Also yes it is not a chess game. But most people wouldn't even pick up on that.
I'll try to. It's 0110 here though, so it may not be until tomorrow... Not like I have anything better to do then though... Except more XCom.

I miss anything important in the lore while I was gone?
Drow appeared a bit back. University was founded. Pandacats are allies of justice. S'all I remember to be important.

I'll have something up myself but it's late so I'll see you gents next thread.
I don't think there's a single legal move in that list
Some sort of alphabet matrix?
Read every other sequence like an actual game?
Is there no key required this time, coz I am feeling very dumb after your last code.

Also, I am not getting the pandacat refs. Needless to say, I will probably be bombarded with them.
No key. Some sort of matrix. Also don't feel dumb, I've been doing this crap and making these things since 5th grade. I have a bit of a leg up.
Also forgot yes substitution.

Also one last hint for the last one if anyone still cares. The Key is GearHeart. Same number of letters as the fragments. And the right-write = writing this to you is a bit of a leap in logic.
A split cipher key, where 4 letters from every phrase correspond to one shift, and 5 letters from the other half correspond to the other? Or an individual letter shift where each letter of the key is set as the new A=1?
I don't know if that's brilliant, or I'm over-analyzing, cause the way I'm reading it, unless I made a mistake, Caesar Keys cannot contain multiples of letters.
Also FLuffy pointed out an error in my code. LSFLFED should read Is Fixed. I really should write this crap out first.
One more hint look to the mechanical engineer who originated the concept of a programmable computer. That will put you on the right track. And I'll post the answer at 10 UTC -7
Should be

Should be
Right, ten minutes and an actual chess board later, I can only say that it is indeed worrying news, and given the last of B&K's conversation (of the not thrown brick variety) I now have new material to work with.
What is more worrying is the reasoning why Sir G feels the need for priority matters to be sent in code. Perhaps a spy (Manchurian?) among the armored?
Not the dreaded _______, I hope.
...wait. Whose horsey-shaped pieces are we talking about?
We gonna get a new thread? This one's been on autosage for a couple hours.
Like I said your not dumb. I just went overkill on the first one.
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Two words:

Also, I have recently finished a filler piece on materials the Iron Inquisition deems heretical.

I'll wait for the next thread before posting.
...dangit, wrong opera!
So was that meant to be a response to me or not?
Nevermind. Oh, by the way, the code needs tinkering as it collapsed after the first two phrases. Had to kick it a bit to get it to work.
Thats what happens when you do them in your head. But I posted the coreected parts after Fluffy pointed them out. So unless fluffy made the same mistakes as I did.

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