>>Previous threads can be found at: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Vale%20Quest>>The synopsis, character descriptions, inventory, and maps can be found at: http://pastebin.com/WAF7dq90The fire crackled, the wagon and Gearworks not far from you, as everyone slept, save for Kelaris and Tannis, who the former was scritching the latter, staring into the fire. You still weren't sure what to think of Kelaris quite yet- As opposed to Kale, who was constantly grinning and hyperactive no matter his mood, Kelaris was slow to get riled up, but implacable when he was. You'd never seen him angry, save the time he first saw Leez's Boon on your arm, and the most you've gotten out of him was a a half-smile and a chuckle. He always seemed at peace with wherever he was, calm.Cass, rolling in her bedroll, finally sat up, too frustrated to sleep. Hannah, sleeping next to her, mumbled something as her wings fluttered, throwing sparks of glitter every which way, before Cass climbed out of the bedroll and took a seat next to you."I forgot to ask, with the customs and the princess and all that." Cass said. "How was Astora?"
>>23047766"She's doing better now that I've seen her."
>>23047766"Better, much better. I think my visit helped a lot."
>>23047766"She's was still in quite a state when I first arrived, but I think she's doing better now."
Rolled 2>>23047766She's doing better, I was able to help a little.
"Better, much better." You say. "She was still in quite a state when I first arrived, but I think my visit helped a lot.""Glad to hear it." She said. "She's my friend too, you know. Despite... our rocky relationship, at the start."She craned her neck upward, and looked up at the stars, and then back down to Hannah's sleeping form."You know... we didn't actually know eachother very well. Me and Hannah, I mean. We weren't even friends, really- just two people who lived in the same place. We were in our own little groups, at the compound."
>>23047937"I guess you've got the opportunity now to get to know her a little better."
>>23047937So how would you consider your relationship now with her, well the both of them. I take it this ride is as boring for you as it is me.
>>23047937"After all this is over, what are you going to do? Re-establish the compound with Hannah or something else?"
>>23047937she seams nice,
"I guess you've got the opportunity now to get to know her a little better.""Yeah." She said. "I worry, because she was always... rather cold. But now that everyone else at the compound is... dead or missing, she... she can't stand being away from me. Can't sleep unless I'm there. I made the mistake of trying to hunt one night, and she panicked. Started screaming her head off. When I got back, she was sobbing openly. Tannis and Kale couldn't even console her."She looked over to the two. "Speaking of which, what do you think of the... new Kale? Or old one, I guess."
>>23048071"I haven't decided yet. He seems quite...stern."
>>23048071"He's... certainly different. I'm not quite sure, yet."
>>23048071"Kelaris isn't a bad person, I don't dislike him or anything...but I miss Kale."
>>23048071I like him, I mean kale wasn't a bad guy but Kelaris is really interesting and the fact he's a better fighter helps.You?
"I haven't decided yet." You say. "He's... certainly different. I'm not quite sure, yet.""Neither am I." She said. "But... could you even *imagine* what it would be like? To have grown up here, and then come back hundreds and hundreds of years later and it's all different? I worry that it's really hard on him.""Kelaris isn't a bad person, and I don't dislike him or anything... but I miss Kale.""Kelaris *is* Kale." Cass said. "Elf names are important, but... there's more than that. They have the same... soul, I guess you could say. They're like... different sides of the same coin, or something. Kale shows the same amount of emotion, I think. It's just that he always has that goofy grin plastered on his face that it's harder to tell.""After all this is over, what are you going to do? Re-establish the compound with Hannah or something else?""... After all this is over, I'm thinking of going north to Sanctuary." She said. "Ariana told me that there are a lot of part trolls and part fairies there."
>>23048253"Ah, that's good. I was going to go take care of Astora, so we can stay in touch."
>>23048253Oh yeah Sanctuary is crawling with them, I'm sure you'll fit right in. It might be a nice change actually, I might live there myself with Tori.
>>23048253"I'm pretty sure there's an entire section of the city that's mostly troll and fairy changelings along with some shapeshifters."
>>23048253Its very cold ... but I thin you two would like it there
"I'm pretty sure there's an entire section of the city that's mostly troll and fairy changelings, along with some shapeshifters. It's very cold, but I think you two would like it there.""I also probably need to learn a trade, too." She said, looking up to the stars. "I doubt they'll have boars to hunt in sanctuary.""It might be a nice change, actually. I was going to go take care of Astora, so we can stay in touch.""That would be nice." She said, and quirked her lips. "But I'll kind of miss it when most of us go our seperate ways. Lyra will have to go back to Bastion, Kale will go... I don't know, to Atlask, maybe? Or to the barrow? Or he might even start wandering or something. As for Tannis... I'm not sure how she'll deal with things. She sees us as her family, I think."
>>23048420"She could probably find a place in Sanctuary. Heh, or she could go back to Isalva."
>>23048420She might head back to the desert, she might head to Sanctuary with us but its not like we can't all stay in touch somehow.
>>23048420The house is quite big enough for a cat haha, besides she has a long lost family somewhere out there. But I was wondering...maybe we could still hunt together after all of this, it would be fun.
>>23048420Maybe we can all keep adventureing.
"She might head back to the desert, or she might head to Sanctuary with us, but it's not like we can't all stay in touch somehow." You say."Yeah, that's a good point." She said, and sighed. "Regardless, that's assuming we all live. We are going to end up going against an army, after all. I like to think I'm a good fighter, but I'm not that good."She tilted her head and gave you a grin. "I'm not sure you aren't, though."
>>23048550Well what we lack in power we will make up for in courage....and luck.
>>23048550"I don't plan to fight the whole army, just the leader. If we can get the control staff we can deactivate the Forged."
>>23048550You have no idea how scared I am. I have no desire to die, but these things are so much bigger then me.
"I don't plan to fight the whole army, just the leader. If we can get the control staff, we can deactivate the Forged.""I know." She said. "But first we need those magic weapons and the right people to give them to."She looked to hannah and sighed. "Apparently we have one of the weapons, and one of the people. I don't know how we're going to find the other person."You close your eyes for a long, long time."You have no idea how scared I am." You say. "I have no desire to die, but these things are so much bigger than me.""Don't be." Cass said. "The whole world is bigger than me, but I've learned to take it on. I'd do it even if I didn't have my strength. You beat me in the arena. Me. The one who killed a dragon with my bare hands."
>>23048707"That's true, but sometimes things don't work out that well for me."
>>23048707Hug her. Thanks Cass. That's just what I needed to hear.Are you doing all right? You mentioned a dream, you know I'm here if you want to talk about it.
You pull her into a hug, slinging your arm around her. "Thanks, Cass. That's just what I needed to hear."She chuckled, and shoved you off."Are you doing alright? You mentioned a dream. You know I'm here if you want to talk about it.""Uh..." She said, and bit her lip. "I, um... lied. I didn't have one."Quickly, as if to stave off whatever you were about to say, she waved her arms toward you."I mean, she was looking at me like she felt really bad that you didn't trust her about her dream and I had to back her up, because she looked so sad!"
>>23048707You were handicapped at the time. If you weren't you would have wiped the floor with me.
Raise an eyebrow.
Ok so OOC time hereWhat are the odds Hannah is a double agent? Exabyte's been mentioning her reactions to things pretty frequently, she seems more excited about this prophecy than anyone else, and Ariana doesn't like her and feels like she's manipulating Cass.
>>23048867Not to mention that the prophecy we received stated it'd be two humans. I'm not sure a fairy is entirely human."It's okay, Cass."
>>23048867That's why I didn't want to spill the entire prophecy to her.If it's true that she's one of the people we're supposed to work with, then she'll know what to do when the time comes anyway.If she's not, then she's lying and is a double agent.
>>23048867I'm inclined to agree, but we didn't mention the seer to Anyone, and she knew. But the crime did say that the spear would go to a Man we Met in skiitara, and Hannah is neither of those.
>>23048829"Does she still have that pistol by the way?"
>>23048829I'm not very happy about that Cass. You yourself said you don't know her that well. Maybe she's just saying it because she doesn't want to be left behind. Not that I would, but it all smells funny.In a low voice.
Reposting from thread 32:The twin keys need to meet the twin seeds. The hammer for the sentry, and the spear for the seer. Only then may the angel become whole, and bear the strength to consume the shards."... They're both human, and neither warlocks." She said. "The knight was certain of that."
"It's okay, Cass." You say, and she nodded."Yeah, I'm sorry." She said, and looked down to Hannah's sleeping form. "But she doesn't think you like her." She said. "That you think she's just a useless nuisance. She's determined to be useful, even if she has to use her magic to do it.""Does she still have that pistol, by the way?""Yeah, she does. Apparently the customs officer recognized it as an alchemy tool, and let her keep it."
>>23048918I assume you meant crone instead of crime? If so, I don't believe she didn't say anything about meeting a man in Skiitara.
>>23048982"Useless? We've barely encountered any problems so far, I don't think of her as useless or a nuisance."
>>23048982Is trust and like her a lot more if she wad just honest with me. Maybe ill pull het aside for a talk tomorrow.
>>23048982"To be honest...I don't really trust her. Especially after today."
>>23049022Yeah that's right. Phones does not make good spelling. There was definitely someone we had to meet in skiitara.
>>23048981I swear we get told a different prophecy or piece of information every so often that happens to contradict what we've already learnt.
Prophecy>"The message is this. The twin keys need to meet the twin seeds. The hammer for the sentry, and the spear for the seer. Only then may the angel become whole, and bear the strength to consume the shards.">"... They're both human, and neither warlocks." She said. "The knight was certain of that."Book>The Heart of Fire once said there was only one angel. I don't agree. There are billions. >Shattered, like glass, into stars, into shards.>All beings are angels. That is why they have souls.>You are not an angel, Abel. Not in the way you're thinking.>Gabriel is, but... you're not.>Your sword, however, is an entirely other story.>Find the spear. Give it to a man in Skiitara.>That is all I can tell you for now.> - Bone of The Earth. >Cyan.
"I'd trust and like her a lot more if she was just honest with me." You say, and sigh. "Maybe I'll pull her aside for a talk tomorrow.""That's probably a good idea." Cass said. "But... I wasn't lying when I said she was the most kind person I've ever met. She wouldn't harm anybody, if she had any other choice. She's always been that way."She stretched, and got to her feet. "But I'm going to get back to bed. I'll see you in the morning, Abel."She slid back into her bedroll, and curled up, trying to sleep.For some reason, after going to Sanctuary, you weren't quite tired yet. Kelaris, Tannis, and Ariana were all still awake, it seemed, but you could always go to sleep if you didn't intend on speaking to any of them.
>>23049196Pick up Kitty and put in on our shoulders, then go for a walk.
>>23049196"Hey, Kelaris, Tannis, I'm going for a walk. Care to join me?"
>>23049174>Alright, so here's what we haveSpear goes to the SeerHammer goes to the SentryThe Seer and the Sentry are human, but neither are warlocks.Considering that so many humans have crossbred with fay that pointed ears are normal, we don't know exactly what percentage of human DNA constitutes "human". More than half? 100%? We don't know.Neither are warlocks, but that may mean that one could be a witch.Assuming the book is correct, the Seer is a man in Skiitara.Assuming Hannah isn't lying, she's the Seer.
>>23049322The only way I can reconcile all of that is if Hannah has a penis. And that doesn't really seem like Exabyte's style, tbh.
Rolled 39>>23049322Exabutt says witches count for the purpose if the prophecy. No idea on changelings.
>>23049322>Things we need to doFind the spearFind the SentryDetermine whether Hannah is or is not the SeerIf Hannah is not the Seer, find the Seer
>>23049368>I'll just state this here; Witches and warlocks are both considered the same thing. A warlock could theoretically be called a witch and it wouldn't mean anything different. In fact, that's normally done. Ever more rare is a witch being called a warlock- which is still done, but mostly by the Order."Hey, Kelaris, Tannis, I'm going for a walk." You say. "Care to join me?""Oh, of course." Kelaris said, and got to his feet, as Tannis leapt out of his lap and onto your shoulder, clinging to the dragonscale there. The three of you (two, technically, since Tannis wasn't walking) walked through the grassy hills, very sparse trees sitting nearby. Absentmindedly, Kelaris plucked a wild fruit from one, and took a bite of it."That city was really pretty." Tannis said, clinging to your shoulder. As always, it unnerves you to see a perfectly feline cat speaking as a person."Nerull was once the gateway to the free cities." Kelaris said. "It's where much of the trade came from, so it prospered. It still has the grand walls after dwindling, though, which is why it's suitable to be a fortification between Skiitaris and the free cities."
>>23049406"Do you think you'll still finish your book, Kelaris?"
>>23049406"It's got to be rough seeing everything changed so much from the last time you were here.
>>23049406Skritch ears. I don't mind whose."Do you have any friends here who might still be alive?"
>>23049322It's also possible that the Bone of The Earth was using "man" to mean human, and not actually the gender, since it is a powerful spirit and that's the sort of thing spirits do.
>>23049174>>23049355Maybe Cyan means 'man' as in Human. As opposed to changeling or witch.
>>23049535Even if that's true, it still discounts Hannah.
>>23049406"So what do you guys think of Hannah? Honest opinion here."
Rolled 23Well shit let's ask Kelaris about the prophecy, see what his opinion of it is.
>>23049511>>23049535Possible>>23049546Depends on how much human blood you need to count as "human". She's only part fairy. Even Abel has slightly pointed ears because there's an elf somewhere far back in the family tree.I think we need more data before we can come to a real conclusion.
You scritch Tannis' ears, and continue on."Do you think you'll still finish your book, Kelaris?""It's not my book, I'm afraid." He said, and scratched at his eye. "I cannot touch it, lest I become Kale once more. And that is not what we need.""It's got to be rough, seeing everything changed so much from the last time you were here."He took a deep breath, and then shook his head."On the contrary... it's a relief. To find that... what happened wasn't easily forgotten.""Do you have any friends here who might still be alive?""I had few friends." He said. "But no, they were all human, and no human can live this long and still be sane." He said."So, what do you guys think of hannah? Honest opinion here.""Hannah's nice." Tannis said, on your shoulder. "Though... she does whine a lot, and gets really upset if Cass isn't around.""She's rather useless." Kelaris said. "I've seen people like her before. Ones who are determined to be helpful even when they are not. She'll have a hard time in front of her as she fights and fails, before she learns. Natural talent is much more useful than determination."
>>23049590She was rather lewd on the island when I met her, I wonder if it's just a cover.
>>23049590"Hey, Kelaris, would you care to spar? I'd like to see how badly I'd lose if I ever had to fight you."
>>23049590"I'm a bit worried about her. I've got two conflicting sources for that prophecy. The spear is supposed to go to the Seer. One source says that the spear goes to someone we'll meet in Skiitara, but then Hannah had that dream telling her that she's the Seer. I didn't tell anyone the full details of the prophecy, but I wouldn't be surprised if Gabe knows the details. So either the other source is wrong... or Hannah is a double agent."
"I'm a bit worried about her." You say. "I've got two conflicting sources for that prophecy. The spear is supposed to go to the Seer. One source says that the spear goes to someone we'll meet in Skiitara, but then Hannah had that dream telling her that she's the Seer." You say. "I didn't tell anyone the full details of the prophecy, but I wouldn't be surprised if Gabe knows the details. So either the other source is wrong... or Hannah is a double agent.""Well, that is a conundrum." He said. "You can't discard her, lest she be speaking the truth, and you can't keep her fully, lest she be Gabriel's agent. I suppose the best option would be to treat her such that she believes you trust her, while keeping her at arm's length."Tannis said nothing, just standing there."Hey, Kelaris, would you care to spar? I'd like to see how badly I'd lose if I ever had to fight you.""Yes, let's spar. And if you lose, I can train you." He asked. "Grand Knights rarely, if ever, train others, so do not take my offer lightly. But I do offer to train you, if our spar finds you wanting.">If you're going to spar him, roll that swordsmanship.
Rolled 54>>23049835Pull his pants down.
Rolled 12>>23049835Never hurts to roll a third time, just in case.
Rolled 42>>23049859Thers is no grabass when sparring a knight, let's not.
Rolled 26>>23049905I can salvage these rolls
>>23049959We already rolled a 97, there's nothing to salvage.
>>23049959No point now, it's the best of the first three rolls for swording if I remember correctly.
You nod, and Tannis leapt from your shoulder."Very well." He said, and drew the long, white blade from his back. Then he shrugged, and laid it into the grass, carefully."Now, I've never been very capable of coaxing plants to my will, but I know enough to make training blades." He said, coaxing two wooden training swords out of the ground. One, you saw, was built like his, a long, thin, one-edged blade, made to be wielded in both hands- the strange sort of curved blade the skiitaran used. The other one was a wooden, dull replica of your sword, just as well crafted, and as you picked it up, you swore it had an iron core, weighting it properly."Are you ready to begin?" He asked, taking a half step back, and his sword in both hands. You nod, and he turned into a blur, as his body split into three- Glamours, you saw, two of them obviously fake, as you parried the third's blow, but just barely. His speed was impeccable, his arms and elbows always locked into place as he swung, form honed over hundreds of years. Time again and again, you hardly parried his blows, and once again he became a blur-And you suddenly had the feeling that something was behind you. Whirling about with your sword, you struck Kelaris's swordarm.He froze, and looked down at it, and back up at you."Well." He said- and gave you a genuine, pearly white grin, as he flung his training sword behind him. "You'd have taken off my arm as easily as that. Good job, Abel."
>>23049994It was as much luck as anything. You are masterful.
>>23049994"I'd say that was more luck than anything. Round two, perhaps?"
>>23049994"Luck more than anything else, and a nagging feeling that you were behind me. 9/10 times you would win, it just so happened that the 1/10 time was this one.
"It was much more luck than anything." You say. "You are masterful.""I know." He said. "But I'm not talking about you putting your blade to my arm- but about you surviving that long." He cracked his neck both ways. "There are three ways to win in any given battle. One, is to give your enemy a decisive strike- Attack too quickly for them to handle, or attack so hard you destroy their defense. Two, is to outlast the enemy. Parry blade against shield, and keep your defense up, and hope the enemy gets exhausted before you do. Three, is to trick the enemy. And that can be anything. Drop a boulder on them, parry them off of a cliff, have your allies prepare an arrowstorm, anything. You demonstrated the second ably."
>>23050158"Thank you, Kelaris, it was an honour. Now if you'll excuse me, I think I'll get some sleep."
>>23050158Scoop up Tannis.Examine the surrounding nature, see if there's anything interesting."So if you can't beat them with strenght, and you can't outlast them, cheat?""I'll keep that in mind."
"Let's head back to camp, I don't want to leave Hannah under Arianas watch for too long."Also let's talk to rogue and ares when we get back, see what they think of the situtation.
You scoop up Tannis, and look about the grassy hills, and the various trees."So, if you can't beat them with strength, and you can't outlast them, you cheat?"He chuckled."Yes. Yes you do. I've used all three."He clapped a hand on your shoulder, and picked up his blade again, slinging it onto his back.As you look about, you see something far away, silhouetted by the stars, and at the top of a hill, standing next to a tree. It looked like a woman, dancing, gently turning with the wind, as the grass on the hill around her whirled. Kelaris didn't pay her any mind, and simply walked down the hill back toward the wagon.
>>23050287Investigate (from a distance)
>>23050287"Shall we investigate, Tannis? I think we shall."Walk over.
>>23050287of course we approach
"Shall we investigate, Tannis? I think we shall."Tannis looked back toward Kelaris."I don't think he saw her." She said. "But yes, we should."As you get closer and closer, eventually you can make out her features. The woman was wearing a thin, white veil over her body, being blown in the wind, and her hair was long, even longer than Astora's, covering her face as it, too, was blown astray. Silently, she spun and swayed, even after she noticed you and Tannis. When you finally got close enough, she was suddenly There, halfway down the hill, and you felt a strange feeling around you. Not like Gabriel, or like Stirge, but like something... else. Something powerful."Hello, little one." She said, quietly. Even this close, with her hair no longer hiding her face, you couldn't see her features well enough to be able to recognize her. It was as if your mind rebelled against the notion of recognizing her."... Hello." Tannis said, up at her."Hello, little one." The woman said again, and giggled as she knelt down to skritch Tannis's ears.
>>23050406"Hello Ma'am, lovely to meet you. Might I have your name?"
>>23050406"Hello, m'lady." Bow"It's a lovely evening."
>>23050425Replace ma'am with milady
>>23050425This, prepare for un-sound.
>>23050406"I feel like I should recognize you, but I can't."
>>23050425We should introduce ourselves first.
"Hello, m'lady." You say, and bow. "It's a lovely evening.""It is, in fact." She said, and looked to the sky. "It's as beautiful as it always is, the stars, and the sky...""I feel like I should recognize you, but I can't." You say. "Might I have your name?"She turned to you, and put a single hand on your chin, giggling again."Dear, dear Abel." She said, a smile on her face. "It is my nature, dear abel. Everyone knows me, but none see my face, or hear my name.""... You're a spirit." Tannis said, and the woman nodded a fraction."I am, dear Tannis." She said. "I am the spirit of wind. It's pleasing to meet a daughter of mine, as well as something... so rare, as your existence, dear Abel."
>>23050527"Ah, so you're like Onyx and Cyan then?"
>>23050527"Everyone says that, but they never explain. Would you care to?"
>>23050527I still only have the barest hints on what you mean.
>>23050527I am nothing special.You're a lot less grumpy then Onyx is.Would you like to dance?
"Ah, so you're like Onyx and Cyan, then?""No." She says. "I, like my dear sister, bear not such powerful names, nor purpose in the world. We simply feel, and act. We are whims, not planners, like our dear brothers. We flow.""Everyone says that, but they never explain. Would you care to?""There is a time and a place for everything. Dear Cyan would be upset if I spoiled the secret of your existence now, would I?""Why did you call me a daughter?" Tannis asked."Because it is my breath that brings forth the maenad." The elemental spirit said. "Like my sister's brings forth the mermaids.""Would you like to dance?" You say, finally, and she turned to you again, a hand on your cheek."You have danced with me since your first breath." She said. "Such a beautiful, beautiful dance, life is."
>>23050642"I guess we'll be on our way then, unless you want to hint at where the spear is?"
>>23050642"And I hope to keep dancing for some time. But the night is only growing older, dance with me now."Offer our hand.
>>23050642"Well I was thinking of a different much less philosophical version of dancing.So milady, what brings you to this very hill on this very night?"
>>23050676Or anything about Hannah.
>>23050716We should ask her about Hannah, since Hannah was aligned with Air and Water.
"And I hope to keep dancing for some time. But the night is only growing older, Dance with me now." You say, holding out a hand.She smiled, again, and curtseyed- which is when you noticed her dress wasn't cloth, but cloud."As you wish, dear Abel." She said, and took your hand, and before you knew it, you were dancing.You never learned how to dance, properly, but your feet moved easily, as you felt the entire world around you- the movement of the grass below you, the sky above you, the branches moving through the air- you felt all of it, around you, and you felt... graceful."What you feel now is the Gift of Flow." She said, quietly. "My greatest gift to those who live in sanctuary. It would be yours, dear magus, but you chose to love my brother's daughter, instead of mine."
>>23050786"One cannot choose who their heart yearns for.""Tannis is troubled by her nature, is there nothing I can do?"
>>23050786"and a pity is it that I missed such a gift, yet I embrace what I have and revel in it."(I wonder if this one is magenta or azure...nah...probably not...)
>>23050786And life is all the sweeter for having felt its touch this once, the gifts I have are my friends my love and my experiences, not power, and I thank you for giving me this one.Then bow to her and thank her for the dance.
>>23050786"Well you can't have everything, I can hardly stop loving her no matter how nice the benefits for loving another may be. But this is impressive, I've always felt like a bit of a galumphing oaf. It's nice to feel graceful, even if only for a short while.Is there any way I can help Tannis? I have tried but she is conflicted by her nature and I don't know what I can do for her. It pains me to see her hating part of herself or hurting herself."
>>23050880Would be, not is. She hasn't given it.
>>23050920she's given us the experience which is what I referred to, though some editing would help with clarity.
"One cannot choose who their heart yearns for.""Of course." She said. "I'm not bitter, and I know that more than all do.""... Tannis is troubled by her nature." You say. "Is there nothing I can do?""On the contrary." She said, as you danced. "There's one thing that only you can do. That only you, like your ancestor, and the first of your kind, could have done."She took a deep breath, as her hair flowed out from her head."A spell. An incantation, a ritual. Something so hidden from all beings, descended from the first magus who created a pact with I and my siblings."She closed her eyes."Within Vigil's hallowed halls, you will find a scroll with a single name on it. My name. There is the knowledge you seek, magus."She gave you a kiss on your cheek, and then leaned back to your ear, and spoke a single word."Vermillion." She whispered, and suddenly everything was normal, and your hand was extended, offering to dance with her. That's when you knew that you actually hadn't danced in reality, but on... some other level. Then she knelt down, all supernatural grace gone, and she started scritching Tannis, giggling.
>>23051027Smile, take a seat and let her play with her daughter for a while.Maybe fall asleep.
>>23051027Take a seat next to Tannis and pet the kitty as well."What exactly is a magus anyways? What does it mean to be one?"
>>23051088...or is this a question to ask Aries or The Rogue?
>>23051120how about we just ask:"Do you know of Ares, or the Rogue?"
You smile, take a seat next to Tannis, and reach out to pet her- but the spirit jealously snatched up the maenad, pulling her into a hug, keeping her jealously out of arm's reach. It reminded you, somehow, of the time Lyra had found a 'pet' sparrow and refused to let you touch it."What exactly is a magus anyways?" You ask. "What does it mean to be one?"The spirit ignored you, and continued petting Tannis, who was purring loudly, half asleep."Do you know of Ares, or the Rogue?"She continued to ignore you, giggling to herself as Tannis started drooling. She started petting Tannis's belly, and Tannis clung to her wrist, hugging it, still purring.
>>23051145Because that doesn't ask the origional question dogg.
>>23051175"No fair, she doesn't let me do that."Admire the stars.
>>23051175I guess my questions are up thenTalk to sword.
>>23051175"Meanie, not letting me pet the kitty, and she never lets me pet her belly. I'm guessing you'll never teach me the secret to it.But she is adorable as can be, I can't blame you for paying attention to her instead of me."Sit back, watch the stars, see if she stops petting Tannis and answers our questions.
>>23051175"Thanks for the help. It was a pleasure to meet you."
>>23051175"Would you tell me the secret to getting her to let me pet her belly without sinking her claws in?"
"Meanie, not letting me pet the kitty. But she is adorable as can be, I can't blame you for paying attention to her instead of me."You sigh, and lay back, watching the stars as she pet Tannis. You slowly start to doze off when you feel Tannis dropped into your lap, and the spirit give you another caress on the chin, and another kiss on the cheek."When you die, dear Abel." She whispered. "I will relish our last dance."And then the spirit was gone, and you were asleep.You wake up to someone shaking you with a pair of talons. Ariana's gryphon was there, and she was shaking you, waking you up."The horses are all ready to go, and we already made breakfast for you." Ariana said, with a sigh. "You're really sleeping in."Suddenly, the gryphon's feathers puffed out."... Something made my skin crawl." She said, looking this way and that.
>>23051301"Spirit of Air, don't worry about it."
>>23051301Oh calm down featherface, I've not felt this relaxed in forever.
>>23051301"Let's get on the road then."
>>23051301"Had a strange night, I danced with the air. She's an odd one.This skin crawling feeling, could you be more exact about it?"
"Had a strange night." You say. "Let's get on the road, then." You pick up Tannis, before climbing into the wagon."Strange." Ariana said, as the three of you flew down to catch up with the wagon; Apparently Kelaris had gotten impatient and set out without you. "My Gift of Shadow is back a lot earlier than it was last time. It's hard to use right now, though.""Good morning, Abel." Cass said."You go out to have a fun night with Tannis?" Hannah leered, and the cat's ears flattened against her head, as the three of you climbed in.Lyra just sighed, looking down at her peacebound sword, before rolling her shoulders. "I had a dream last night." She said."A dream of truth?" Ariana said. "No, nothing like that." She said. "Just a dream about mom. She was dancing with you, Abel, when you were little. Remember that?"
>>23051451"Not particularly. Sorry, my memories of me being little are tenuous as best.Though I did dance last night."Also, pet the kitty.
>>23051451"Really? Interesting, I was actually dancing."
>>23051484this is perfect.
>>23051451"Yeah, that is weird, because last night I was dancing with some wind spirit.""Maybe it's like a muscle, Ariana, the more you use it the stronger it is?"
"Vaguely." You say. "Sorry, my memories of me being little are tenuous at best.""As always." She said. "You'd forget your own birthday if I didn't make you a special meal every year.""Although I did dance last night." You say, and start petting Tannis.Hannah grinned at you, and then your stomach rumbled. She panicked, and pulled out some eggs. Hard to eat on the trembling wagon, but warm enough for you (And Tannis, apparently, according to the way she kept stealing some.) "That is weird, because last night I was dancing with some wind spirit."Kelaris turned back, and gave you a slight grin, before turning to drive the horses onward."A wind spirit?" Lyra asked, eyebrows raising. "Spirits are really really rare. And there was one last night?""... I met her too." Tannis said, quietly- she seemed somewhat stunned by the memory, her voice as soft as you've ever heard it.
>>23051451Bad Hannah, down.
>>23051599Really rare? I kind of figured by how they seemed so important, but... she was the third I've met...
>>23051599"Sorry to disappoint Hannah. Taken, remember?""It seems I meat all kinds of rare beings, especially lately."
>>23051599The wind spirit, if I'm to understand.She mostly just wanted to pet tannis though.
>>23051629When did we meet the others.
>>23051659We met the fire one in the Catastra mansion.We got a message from Cyan in the library, but I wouldn't really call that meeting...
>>23051659>>23051629We met Onyx, Cyan's just been leaving us messages.
>>23051629We've only met two, so far.
>>23051659Well we met Onyx, but we technically didn't meet Cyan.
>>23051684What did the first message in the beastiary we got for Ariana say?
>>23051599"I'm not sure if it'd be a wind spirit or THE wind spirit. Hard to say.But yes there was, she's an excellent dancer."
"She mostly just wanted to pett Tannis, though." You say. "They're really rare? I kind of figured by how they seemed so important, but... she was the second I've met.""... Well, we are off to save the world." Lyra said, and gave you a grin. "I just hope I get to be the one to meet the next spirit. And I hope he's handsome. Think he'll give me a new sword?""You can get a new sword if you take the gauntlet, in Skiitaris." Kelaris said, turning back. "Those who do gain the title of grand swordsmen, or grand warrior, or, if you take an oath, grand knight. It allows you free range of the Skiitaran armory- an honor, since many ancient and powerful weapons reside there.""Then I might do the gauntlet... thing." Lyra said."You need to be recommended... but I'd recommend you, Abel, and Cass, and my word is enough to take the gauntlet."
>>23051749"Can you tell us what the gauntlet is like?
>>23051749"Well, thank you."
>>23051749"This is a great honor, thank you. Could you tell me more of the gauntlet? How high would you say the chance of dying is?"
>>23051749"That's a kind offer, but I've got my guns, bow and sword and I hope that's all I'll need."
>>23051749"Thank you. I'll have to do that, then."
>>23051749How far out of the way is Vigil, Kelaris? I rather want to go there.
>>23051749just one question; is death an outcome of this gauntlet?
"That is a great honor, thank you. Can you tell us what the gauntlet is like?""... Brutal." He said. "It's a small underground dungeon, populated with barghests, manticores, venomous snakes, deadly traps... there's likely even a defanged ghoul or two, still in there. and then if you can get through it without being poisoned or killed, then you have to defeat a representative Grand Knight- usually the youngest or most infirm, but still, a Grand Knight.""How high would you say the chance of dying is?""I survived it." He said. "But out of every hundred young men who go in, only five come back out. But those are novices, trying to win the favor of a princeps, or trying to get into the skirts of a girl. To a trained, careful warrior, it isn't as dangerous as most say. But only if you're careful, and wise."
>>23051934"Cool. If you're going to go through with that, be careful, Lyra."
>>23051934"So, like much of life."
>>23051934"I might be interested in giving it a shot, then..."
>>23051934I'm not sure sure it'd be worth the risk.
>>23051934"Huh. Sounds much like an average day for us, then."
>>23051934alright, so...about as hard as our average stand up battles have been...I might give it a go then.a pleasant young lady mentioned a place to me, does the word Vigil mean more to you that "to watch over"?
>>23051934"Huh, might be fun. Are there any rules on equipment you're allowed to use?">>23052050It's a city, I think. Anala said her brother was in Skitaris or Vigil.
>>23052098>>23052050Yeah it's a city, I checked the map. It's north of Skitaris in the middle of the fucking swamp.
>>23052128It doesn't have the same symbol as the cities or villiages though.
>>23052139Also, fuck swamps. But we have to do it for Tannis.
"So, like much of life.""Like much of life." He said, and chuckled. "But life, unlike the gauntlet, doesn't end until you're dead."Time passed, and eventually, ahead, you saw the great, perfectly smooth walls of Skiitaris. Part city, part citadel, part enormous fortress, built atop a massive river flowing southwards."This is Skiitaris. Also known as the palace of skiitara." he said. "It's a castle, though in practice, it tends to be more of a city."He stretched, and took a deep breath of fresh air."A pleasant young lady mentioned a place to me." You said. "Does the word Vigil mean more to you than 'to watch over'?""It does." He said. "Vigil is a monastary, north of Skiitaris, in the middle of the marsh. It's... an old, old place. Even older than I. I recall hearing it's similar to Bastion, in the Free Cities. I have seen it with my own eyes, but only once, when the then-emperor took me there."
>>23052200"We might need to head there again."
>>23052200"Would it be hard to gain access to, then?"
>>23052200"That's where we're going next."Get our paperwork ready, give tannis one last earskritch and make sure everythings bonded up again.
>>23052200"I'd very much like to head there at some point if we can. She implied it would contain some answers."
>>23052200"Sounds ... pleasant. After our time in Skiitaris we're going to pay it a visit.This is more your city than any of ours, lead the way Kelaris."
>>23052200I think we'll be making a stop there at some point; the young lady gave me a little suggestion pertaining to it and it's library.
"That's where we're going next." You say. "Would it be hard to gain access to, then?""No, not at all. After all, Imperial Princess Anala recommended we go there." He said. "With that alone, we could enter.""I'd very much like to head there. She implied it would contain some answers.""Then we can go there to gain answers." He said, and nodded, as he directed the wagon up to the gates.Customs was much quicker than it was last time- all you had to do was show them your weapons, and the paperwork, and they let you go right on past. As usual, Kelaris didn't seem hindered at all, his sword entirely unbound, as the group walked into the cityA castle it was, like nothing you'd ever seen before. A great marble floor was beneath your feet, echoing, and above you was open sky, showing you the great towers surrounding you, with guards plastered near the walls, and you see a small swarm of young girls in finery run by, giggling and chasing eachother."What shall the first step be?" Kelaris asked you.
>>23052416Well we've got to see the Princep about Gareth, and see someone in charge about the Forged, so I guess the palace? Or someplace to stay and leave the cart and Gearworks.
>>23052416"I suppose governmental officials regarding the situation about Gareth and the Forged."
>>23052416"Probably to find 'the' Princeps, or someone who can put us in contact with them."
>>23052416unless you have a suggestion I think we need a place to stay the night; once we have that arranged we can go to see the princeps
"Well, we've got to see the princeps about Gareth, and see someone in charge about the Forged." You say. "Or some place to stay.""Right, right, good point." He said. "There shouldn't be a problem with some place to stay. If this is a homecoming for Tannis, then she will already have several rooms for her and her retainers, friends, or family."He looked this way and that, and then his lips quirked. "Sadly, I am entirely lost. They've changed things since I was gone. One second."He dove into a nearby hallway, and came back with a girl dressed in a white and black frilly thing, and an apron. She was slung over his shoulder, struggling."Excuse me." He said, setting her down in front of all of you. "We're looking for the princeps.""Um, milord... which one?" She asked.
>>23052684"*The* princeps. That's who the message says to deliver it to."
>>23052684"Well I suppose at least one of them would be acceptible.""What's the procedure for homecomings? Do we attend some sort of party?"
>>23052684"The one with the fanciest hat. The most princepy of the princeps. We have a message for 'THE' princeps."
"*The* Princeps." You say. "That's who the message says to deliver it to. The one with the fanciest hat. The most princepy of the principes.""... I, uh..." The poor girl said, eyes wide, looking around. "Do you mean the son of the emperor? He's, um, the most pure princeps.""... That should work, yes." Kelaris said. "Do you know where he is?""No, grand knight, I'm afraid I don't." She said. "He may be traveling to Vigil, or traveling back here. He often paces between the two.""What's the procedure for homecomings? Do we attend some sort of party?""Er, no." She said. "The homecoming princeps is supposed to meet with the emperor. But after the illness... Skiitara has no emperor, so it will have to wait until the imperial princess marries. Until then, she's to be housed and taken care of in the palace." She said. "Um, are one of you Tannis Rowling?""... I am?" Tannis asked, raising a hand. The girl bowed, nervously- her eyes kept darting up to Kelaris."We, um, already have a place set up for you, milady."
>>23052903"That's great, we can just head up towards Vigil and meet him on the way."
>>23052903"Andalus, right? We really do need to find him, the message is quite urgent."
>>23052903Could you take us there?You're going to have to start taking the lead here, Tannis.
>>23052903"Andalus? Oh, well the Princess asked us to meet him anyway. That's convenient."
"Could you take us there?" You ask. "You're going to have to start taking the lead here, Tannis.""But..." She said, pouting."You probably should." Kelaris said, with a very kale-like grin."But I'm just a sandbooorn." Tannis frowned, as the servant lead you through the palace."This is your hall, Princeps Rowling." The girl said. "You, your retainers, and any other guests you wish to house can stay here. Each morning, if you wish, simply ask one of us to make you some food."Tannis's ears drooped, and the girl absentmindedly patted Tannis's head."Oh, I'm sorry!" She said, pulling her hand back. "You just looked so... ""I don't mind." Tannis said, with a sigh, and the servant patting her head."Andalus, right?" You ask. "We really do need to find him, the message is quite urgent.""If it's very urgent, and you don't have time to travel, I could lead you to the captain, or even the Grand Knights- excusing you, sir." She said, somehow discerning Kelaris's position just by looking at you. "They have the authority to mobilize the army, if need be."
>>23053121"It's probably best we get the message to the captain as well as Andalus."
>>23053121"I don't know if army mobilization is necessary, but telling the Captain would be fantastic."
>>23053121"Alright, new plan. We stay here for the night, see if Andalus shows up, if he doesn't, then we head to Vigil."
>>23053121"The problem here is that we don't know, precisely, what needs to be done."
>>23053121Ruffle Tannis' hair. "You'll be fine."We should get settled here, find our way around and hopefully the dude will be back soon enough.
"Alright, new plan." You say. "We stay here for the night, see if Andalus shows up, if he doesn't, then we head to Vigil.""But what about the gauntlet?" Lyra asked. "I thought we were going to do that."The servant took a step away from lyra, eyes wide. She looked from Lyra, to Kelaris, to the pouting Tannis, to Cass, her tail writhing absentmindedly, to Hannah, her wings fluttering, and finally to the gryphon behind you."... You're adventurers, aren't you?" She asked.Kelaris, absentmindedly, gave her a nod.The captain was a tall, stern woman, lines of age in her face, and on her back, she bore a sword identical to the sort Kale wore, though none of the other guards or warriors seemed to be wearing them."Captain Brina, at your service." She said, bowing. "A homecoming princeps shapeshifter, and an ancient elven Grand Knight? Hah, never would have thought that something like this would happen. I was told by the maid that you come bearing a message for me."
>>23053345"Well to be fair, we are adventurers. Weird kinda seems to be our thing."
>>23053345"Somewhat."Show her the cold iron crescent
>>23053345We've got some things to tell the Princeps, and we were wondering where he was.
>>23053499No, we're here for her because she has the authority to mobilize the army.
>>23053345"The former tyrant of the fey... somehow... escaped captivity in Atlask. She is now aiding Sky, the leader of the army of forged that has set out to conquer the world. I'm here because I've learned you can, supposedly, help me kill this Sky person."
>>23053527Whoops, should be Gareth and not Sky. Tired.
>>23053345Show her the crescent. It should say it all, really.
>>23053345"This Crescent was found in a cave shortly after a particularly nasty elf named Gareth escaped captivity. We can also confirm that she is now aiding the leader of the Forged army, Sky."
"Somewhat." You say, and give her a crescent."Here is sealed Garethiel, Tyrant of the fae." The captain read, in a low voice. "Do not remove, or you doom us. If all is lost, bring this seal to the Skiitaran princeps. This is our only hope." She said, and looked up."I don't understand what this means." She said. "The princeps? Why not the princpes, plural, or, the captain, or the Grand Knights? Which princeps does it mean?""The former tyrant of the fae... somehow... escaped captivity in Atlask." You say. "She is now aiding Sky, the leader of the army of forged that has set out to conquer the world. I'm here because you can, supposedly, help me kill this Sky person."She set down the crescent for some time, and thought... and then took a deep breath. "Alright, thank you for this message. I'll speak to the Grand Knights about it, and perhaps a scholar or two about ancient histories." She said- and met your eyes for the first time. "And the two children of Ezekiel Byrne." She added, looking to you and Lyra. "From the letters, I knew you two would end up here eventually. Rachel, please get us some tea. I've a nephew and niece to speak to."The servant bowed, and left the room.>End of thread
>>23053681Thanks for running, Exa!
>>23053681>I've a nephew and niece to speak to.Wait, wait, what?
>>23053681Spy networks everywhere!
>>23053681Are you shitting me.
>>23053718Naw, probably just a letter from the dude who registered us to the capital stating the names we used, and someone was like "Wait, Byrne. Isn't that Captain Brina's last name? I should pass this along, see if there's any relation."
Question for you Exabyte: How much has Kale changed in your mind from when you first introduced him? How much of him did you plan?
>>23053799>Originally, he was going to be the token 'gay option', and a 'chocolate elf' to troll someone in the IRC, since he wasn't female, nor busty.>That's, uh, it. The rest he just kind of... sprawled outward.
>>23053824Oh Bioware, you dog you.
>>23053681I was doing a quick re-read of a few threads and noticed this.>"And I must fight those who wield the other weapons? In some sort of game of gods?" You ask. "Or do we need to form a team to save the world?"><The others are phased, actually, so you wouldn't even be able to meet them at all.>How do we give the hammer and the spear to the others if we can't meet them?
>>23054544QUIT POKING AT THE SEAMS IN REALITY LEST YOU ANGER THE SPIRITS OF THE ETHER
>>23054544Guess we'll just have to cheat!