Archive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?searchall=Sky+RiderTwitter: https://twitter.com/FrostyZipperYou’ve never visited the gunnery before, so before entering you weren’t entirely sure what to expect.What you see is a long, dank stretch of deck that probably extends from one end of the ship to the other that positively reeks of sweat, cordite, and the disturbingly familiar coppery tang of blood. The large, fat rears of positively massive guns line the edge of the space at regular intervals, the barrels of the weapons themselves peering out the flank of the airship, and you don’t doubt that anything facing a full broadside from those monsters will quickly find its day irreparably ruined. Large crates line the opposite end, sitting by the walls; most of them marked: “DANGER – EXPLOSIVE”.In the midst of that, the gunners and a group of boarders are embroiled in a savage melee. Gunners lash out with all manner of weapons; cutlasses, sabres, you see a heavily tattooed woman wielding a sword almost as large as she is tall, and a few manage to keep enough space to break out pistols, firing them almost point blank at the struggling soldiers.It’s clear to you now that the soldiers are severely outnumbered, and their numbers drop with each moment, but at the centre of their pack stand four masked individuals you now recognise as sorcerers, or warlocks, whatever. They stand in a semi-circle; all of them have their backs to you and seem unaware of your presence, and even though you can’t make out their mouths beneath those gilded masks, you’re certain they’re murmuring words of power. You have no idea how long it’ll take before they unleash whatever magics they’re conjuring but you’re sure that if you don’t act soon those gunners won’t stand a chance.>You have a magic arm: charge! (d20 for combat, surprise adds +1 to your roll)>Find a weapon but risk being discovered
Rolled 9>>32569395>You have a magic arm: charge! (d20 for combat, surprise adds +1 to your rollSOMETHING SOMETHING BOLD
Rolled 12 + 1>You have a magic arm: charge! (d20 for combat, surprise adds +1 to your roll)
Rolled 14>>32569395>You have a magic arm: charge! (d20 for combat, surprise adds +1 to your roll)We should have went to the chapel
Rolled 4 + 1>>32569395>You have a magic arm: charge! (d20 for combat, surprise adds +1 to your roll)Maybe interrupting them mid-spell would cause backlash, knock them right out of the fight. We can hope, at least.
Rolled 9 + 1>>32569395Fuck them up
>>32569395Thank yeezus I finally made it in time
>>32569395You glance around for the briefest moment before snapping your gaze back to the unaware group of warlocks. Whatever they’re casting probably isn’t getting any less lethal, and if your strange arm powers can cancel or eat magic then you’ll probably be a lot more useful in the thick of it, even if you don’t manage to take them all (and you sincerely doubt you’re really capable of such) you should at least provide a decent distraction.Clenching both fists, you pounce into the midst of the four mages, ramming your fist into the back of a skull before lining up a crushing kick to the testes of the next closest sorcerer. The first one stumbles forward into the back of a man guarding them, and a stray shot suddenly rips open the soldier’s throat. The other howls in agony and drops, clutching his bruised nads. The other two turn toward you, and you can quite clearly make out the surprise in their wide eyes.Not really having much else to go on, you attack again, leaping at the next closest warlock, whose hands suddenly flare with power. He reaches for you but he’s far too slow and you bat both hands aside with your left, and whatever he was planning on slapping you with dies, much to the shock of the mage. As you’d expected, the itching returns in force, as does that swirling blue tattoo, and in his shock and curiosity the attacking warlock opens himself completely, and you plant as much force as you’re able to muster into a punch you plant straight into his gut. The man visibly deflates and drops, wheezing and gasping for air.The final warlock backpedals while at the same time furiously swinging his staff at your head. The stone at its tip grazes your cheek and you yelp at the sudden pain that flares across your face, feeling blood trickle from the open cut. You glance for any gap you might be able to exploit but a brute, animal roar grabs your attention.(cont)
>>32570248(cont)Limwitz, the big, scarred gunner you saw upon your first meeting with Kyd and Captain Ryder, charges through a gap in the defences of the boarders. He hefts what looks like a giant hammer, and every strike he makes shatters limbs and pulps flesh. The remaining boarders rush to close the gap but there are far too few of them and in short order you find yourself backed up by at least a dozen angry, bloodied crewmen. The warlock blinks before wisely throwing down his staff in surrender.You learn later that the attack came from a Defensor-class Visan military airship – though you admit to having little idea as to what that means exactly – and one with an unusually large complement of magic support. The ship closed expecting a fight, but owing to the misfortunately-timed instrument failure in the Lookout, managed to creep up on the Lady Fortuna from a low altitude and launch a boarding action to attempt to take the ship.‘Damned fine timing is what it is,’ Ryder mutters darkly as you follow him down to the brig, with Kyd, whose left arm sits in a sling, Limwitz, and a number of other crewmen in tow. ‘Instrument fills the entire Lookout with impenetrable steam just as a military airship passes by? I don’t believe one jot of it.’ He spares you a wary glance. By now word of your strange ability has passed through the crew, though you’re just as confused as the rest of them, though you’d be lying if you didn’t have a healthy appreciation for it – it did save your life after all.The cells of the brig hold all thirteen prisoners taken during the attack, the only survivors of the fifty men who launched the attack. Their ship is a wreck staining a lush green hillside, and from their slumped shoulders and hollow looks, they appear to think as though their doom is a certainty.(cont)
>>32570306(cont)In a separate cell of their own, with their hands and feet clasped in irons, sit three figures. These three were part of the contingent of warlocks who lent their aid to the boarding action, though there were definitely more still alive when the last boarder threw down his weapons, two slit their wrists, and one of the trio in the cell is still deathly pale from his own suicide attempt.Ryder has the cell opened and drags a couple of stools inside, claiming one and motioning for you to sit on the other. The other crewmen stand behind you looking intimidating, even Kyd manages it despite his tender arm. Ryder’s gaze flickers across your left arm before settling on you, his face grim. He’s already talked to the men in the cages, learnt everything he said he needed to, but after much pleading, and a few crew testimonies, you got a chance to ask the warlocks about this strange gift of yours yourself to see if they know anything about it. You certainly don’t, but with some luck that might change with this encounter.>ask away
>>32570372WHY DOES HE WEAR THE MASK
>>32570372"You saw what my arm did to yoir spells, what the hell is this?"Also it seems like we might have a traitor on ship did ryder ask about that?
>>32570372why in all the nine hells did you think boarding this ship was a smart idea?
>>32570372You spend a brief moment mulling over what you want to ask these people, then a thought crosses your mind.‘Okay: really important question: why do you all wear those masks?’ you ask.‘Cown…’ Ryder says; a note of warning in his voice.‘I’m serious,’ you add, defensively. ‘All of them wear those creepy gold masks and I just want to know what the deal is, I mean does it make them stronger or something?’‘You didn’t need to ask them about it though,’ Ryder replies before explaining. ‘It’s a leash of sorts; lets their overseers know where they are at all times. There’s some symbolic value there too based on an old myth but that’s another, much longer story.’‘Even at mealtimes? And wait, don’t these guys work for the army? Why would they need to know where their own people are at?’‘Magic’s a dangerous art Cown,’ Ryder answers coolly, ‘there’s a lot of indoctrination at the academy, such as it is, but there’s no way to be completely sure it’s taken root, hence the precaution.’‘But that’s…’‘Safe, is the word you’re looking for,’ Ryder interrupts. ‘The staffs they wield help channel their gifts and without them, unleashing magic would be more akin to unleashing an uncontrollable tempest than the weapon it is. If there wasn’t a way of keeping watch over each and every one of them… well, all it’d take is one.’ ‘They can’t possibly be that dangerous,’ you say, quite unsure how to take all this in. Ryder doesn’t respond.(cont)
>>32570605(cont)‘Okay… next question: why in all eight layers of the Abyss did you think it was a good idea to board this ship?’‘I’ve gone over that with each of our prisoners,’ Ryder says, sounding weary now. ‘They spotted us and had standing orders to investigate any ship with a profile like ours. When they got closer and we didn’t fire they thought they had us and the bright spark in charge thought my head would make a nice present for the freshly elected head of the provisional government… our old friend Theodoric. As to the timing… well, I’m looking into that, and if there’s anything to find, then I’ll find it. It’s what I do after all.’He finishes with his face set in a humourless frown that almost makes you feel sorry for whoever is on his shit list right now.‘All right, last question!’ you hold your left arm up in front of the warlocks; one of them, the middle one, narrows his eyes at you. He must have seen it then.‘You guys – or some of you – saw what this can do to your powers. Spells. Magic, whatever. I found out about this today. If you know anything, I want to know too because as handy as it is, knowing I’ve been sitting on this for all my life is kind of a big deal to me.’‘And why would we tell a filthy marauder like you what we know about it if there even is anything TO know?’ the palest of them spits, his voice almost a whisper from his close brush with death.The other two stay silent, though the one who seemed to have recognised you appears less hostile and more like he’s mulling on something.>Bargain?>Try talking to the middle warlock>Ask Ryder for an assist
>>32570709Because you're almost dead and I can just ask your more cooperative friend to tell me.
Rolled 12 + 1>>32570709Bargain: because I can crush you're balls and I'm not THAT sadistic...yet.
>>32570709>Bargain?"Because I can be civil. I can trwat you like human beings not just our prisoners. I have something you want and you I. You can help me with whatever this is and I'll make sure you don't live like the garbage my crew thinks you are. You see my friend Limwitz really likes that hammer of his, but he also really hates you guys for killing some of his friends. Now I know some of you seen what he can do with that hammer of his if not we can show you. Understand this though help me and i may not be able to guarantee your freedom I'll certainly try we seem to have a lack of magical support on this vessel if you catch my drift. Don't and well you can speak to Limwitz although he's a man of few words."Good? Bad? Disclaim er I'm slightly drunk
>>32570709>Bargain?"Oh, okay, I just assumed you'd be more concerned about this. I mean, I'm playing with powers beyond my knowledge. I don't know how I'm doing this, or even what it is I'm doing. Really, I could wind up causing a lot of harm to everyone on this ship without even trying to. But hey, if you want to leave me to figure out a potentially horrifyingly dangerous power through trial and error, that's your choice."
>>32570709You fix the smarmy warlock with a squint you hope is threatening. Granted you don’t particularly want them dead but on the other hand they’ve assisted in the murder of at least a dozen of the crew, and you doubt Kyd got that broken arm by tripping down a flight of stairs. In short, you’re not his buddy, and if you weren’t sure it might kill him then giving him a set of mushed nads of his own would sound pretty appealing right now.‘Because you’re almost dead, and I think I might be able to talk with your other friend right here,’ you snap, motioning with your head towards the middle warlock. ‘Additionally, I can also give you the same treatment I gave most of your other pals; all I’d need to do is wind up my leg and kick.’The warlock sneers, but he shuts up all the same. Mhm, that’s what you thought.‘Besides, I thought you'd all be more concerned about this. I mean, I'm playing with powers beyond my knowledge. I don't know how I'm doing this, or even what it is I'm doing. Really, I could wind up causing a lot of harm to everyone on this ship without even knowing I’d be doing it. But hey, if you want to leave me to figure out a potentially horrifyingly dangerous power through trial and error, that's your choice. So with that in mind, have you got anything for me?’ you ask, pointedly looking at the middle warlock, who makes a thoughtful expression before nodding slightly.(cont)
Rolled 18 + 1It's like a scene out of the godfather.
>>32570961‘Margus don’t you tell them anything!’ the pale warlock spits, he’s getting rather annoying now, so, as promised, you stamp on his crotch. The howling that follows makes you think he’s probably not in as bad a state as you seemed to think he was.‘I’ll be blunt,’ the warlock – Margus if you heard right – says. His face betrays no emotion. ‘I doubt anything I have to say will be of any practical use to any of you, but this has caught my interest… and doing so will likely lighten whatever fate you may have in store for me. I will answer.’‘Sensible man,’ Ryder says, nodding in approval.‘But not here,’ he says, flicking a glance at his writhing comrade, whose face has turned a deep shade of purple, ‘there will be interruptions.’>Sounds good>Not sure I trust you outside your cell>Write-in?
>>32570977Ask Ryder what he thinks. If he approves take him blindfolded and gagged to another cell. Spin him around a couple of times while we're at it keep him disoriented.
>>32570977>Sounds goodCan we kill the pale one now?
>>32570977>Write-in?"Alright, that works for me if the Captain allows it. Quick question before we go, though: My first instinct is to hold onto you the whole time we're moving you so that if you try any magic it'll get shut down. How bad an idea is that? Bear in mind that if that's not a viable method we would have to find some other, probably less pleasant, way to keep you from casting. So don't try to lie to me about it in some attempt to get free."
>>32570977You pause for a second; unsure of whether or not you’re allowed to make that call. You glance back at Ryder, who nods softly.‘Keep his bindings on though,’ he advises.‘I understand the caution, but they will hardly be necessary,’ Margus says.‘We’ll err on the side of caution anyway, I’m sure you understand,’ Ryder responds. Margus shrugs.‘And I can hold onto him, maybe that’ll stop him casting anything,’ you offer, and Ryder nods at you before pulling himself up.‘As understandable as your concerns are my potential gateway to freedom is not why I said what I said. Without my staff, my particular gifts are as dangerous to myself as they would be to you and your vessel. But I suppose it matters little in the end.’All the same, as soon as Margus is then separated from his fellows, he’s then blindfolded, and led through the ship to the cargo hold with you keeping your hand on him at all times.The hold is spacious, with crates of varying size stockpiled inside; some larger than a steamcoach, others no bigger than your head. The party hauls Margus into a little clearing within the forest of crates before removing the rag that blinded him and sitting him down. Margus is a slim man, you guess a little younger than thirty, with expressionless blue eyes and deep brown hair that looks as though it’s gone unwashed for some time.‘Well then, start talking,’ you demand.Margus stares at you for a moment before speaking.‘If it would not be too much trouble, might I ask for a demonstration? To reaffirm what I believe I saw?’>Are you crazy?!>Not my call to make>Write-in?
>>32571192>Not my call to make
>>32571192>Write-in?"You know, I don't know if I can. So far it's only visibly shown when I was disrupting a spell. Let me try to get it to appear on command."And then we see if we can get the tattoo to appear just through focusing on it.
how dare they attack and try to murder us we did nothing wrong it is not like we totally slaughtered their royal family or anything(as far as they know) we should totally keep torturing them and executing and mutilating prisoners cause that is totally what good people do
>>32571320Nope, we good worshiper of Fortuna now we should flip a coin to decide what to do with them
>>32571320I don't know where you got the idea we were good people. And besides, the most we did was step on one guy's balls, that's not that bad as far as torture goes. I'm sure they'll be treated humanely from now on.
>>32571192You blink at the warlock, momentarily uncertain you heard what he just said.‘Uh… that’s not really my call to make,’ you say uneasily. ‘And didn’t you say that without one of those staff things your powers would be as dangerous to you as us?’‘I did, yes, and I meant to go on to say that if you have either mine or my colleagues’ lying around then I would appreciate its use. If not, then I suppose I must try to rein in my gift as much as I am able.’You think for a moment before shaking your head. ‘You know, I don't know if I can. So far it's only visibly shown when I was disrupting a spell. Let me try to get it to appear on command.’What follows is a few minutes of you looking like you’re trying to drop the largest kidney stone man has ever seen. Needless to say, it doesn’t work and your arm remains as arm-y as it always is. No mystical powers or strange tats. Nothing.‘If you’re done?’ Margus chimes. Ryder sighs and shakes his head.‘Sorry, but I won’t risk it, not with what’s just happened to my ship – to my crew.’Margus blinks and nods slowly.‘I see, in that case I apologise in advance for this,’ and no sooner does he finish when he mutters a single, low word. The room temperature seems to drop a few degrees and from a pointed finger, a burst of what you think is lightning streaks for your arm. The familiar itching sensation returns, as does the tattoo and the lightning strikes your outstretched limb and flares before dissipating. It’s over as quickly as it starts and no sooner does it die when Margus is tackled by Limwitz and four other crewmen.‘I should gut you for that you treacherous snake,’ Limwitz snarls, a dirk in one of his meaty hands and poised above the warlock’s Adam’s apple.(cont)
>>32571519"That was very impolite. We asked him not to do that. I'm telling you, Captain, I just don't understand people sometimes."
>>32571519(cont)‘Limwitz, off him,’ Ryder commands, though he keeps a hand near one of the pistols at his waist. ‘He does anything like that again though and you can skewer him then and there.’Limwitz growls but acquiesces, and the other four crewmen get off the warlock as well.‘My apologies again,’ Margus says. ‘But I doubted that you would allow me the opportunity of another sight of this… phenomenon on your own, so I took it into my own hands.’‘Can all of you use magic when clapped in irons?’ Ryder asks.‘Some of us can. Of the three of us in that cage? Only me; unless one or both of them has been hiding aspects of their respective powers.’‘Okay, can we get back to the freaky stuff with my arm now please?’ you ask, still a little unnerved at almost being fried. The tattoo fades away with the itch, as it did the last few times.‘Fascinating,’ Margus breathes before casting his gaze across the assorted individuals in the hold. ‘Magic energy is all around us. It’s in the very air we breathe, and every living thing has a supply of it.’‘What are you talking about?’ Kyd asks. ‘I thought we were talking about–’‘I’ll get to that, but I need you to understand this first,’ Margus says. Kyd frowns but nods for him to continue.‘Feeling and later manipulating this energy forms the basis of what we refer to as magic arts, and with it, we can raze entire buildings, cure incurable afflictions, do things most men could not in their wildest dreams imagine, the only limitation is how much energy one can take and mould, and this can vary wildly from person to person. In the end, however, regardless of whatever spell is cast, this energy always returns to the world.‘In the case observed here, however, this is not so. I don’t know what afflicts you, boy, but for whatever reason any active magical energy that comes into contact with your arm is absorbed.’(cont)
>>32571662(cont)‘So… that’s good right? I mean that’s what’s protected me from all those–’ you start, but Margus interrupts you.‘You don’t understand,’ Margus says, shaking his head. ‘Magical energy cannot BE absorbed. It is a fundamental truth of the world. Much like mathematics: it simply is.’>So what does this mean for me?>So my freaky arm breaks the laws of nature? Sweet>Write-in?
>>32571701>So my freaky arm breaks the laws of nature? Sweet
>>32571701>So my freaky arm breaks the laws of nature? SweetTIME TO BREAK ALL THE THINGS
>>32571701If that's true why isn't the universe ripping itself apart to rip off my arm and dispose of it?
>>32571701>Write-in?"Maybe it just looks like it's being absorbed, then. Magic can be moved around, right? You wouldn't be able to use it if it was static, if I'm understanding this correctly. So it could be that it's still returning to the world, just not this part of it. Whatever is protecting me flings the magic somewhere else, rather than destroys it. Wouldn't that make more sense?"
>>32571701‘So what you’re saying is that, somehow or other, my freaky arm breaks the laws of nature?’ you ask.‘Essentially,’ Margus confirms.‘Sweet,’ you say as you check your arm over, a slow grin spreading across your face.‘I doubt you will think so when I have finished,’ Margus says.‘Wait, there’s more?’‘Indeed. I cannot tell you exactly what will happen if you continue to absorb magic energy, this being – as I believe I have inferred – a most unusual case. But I can make educated speculations, and the foremost of these would be that regular absorption of various different forms of magical energy would build and accumulate until eventually, it would result in a catastrophe which would likely prove fatal for you and potentially anyone around you.’That certainly doesn’t sound good.‘Wait, wait, hold on. Maybe it just looks like it's being absorbed? From what you said, magic can be moved around, right? You wouldn't be able to use it if it was static, if I understand this correctly. So it could be that it's still returning to the world, just not this part of it. Whatever is protecting me flings the magic somewhere else, rather than destroys it. Wouldn't that make more sense?’Margus thinks for a moment before nodding slowly. ‘A possibility.’>Shit>So I just need to stop deflecting magic?>Write-in?
>>32571933>Write-in?"So what you're saying is... You don't know whats going on and you dragged us all down here to give us a lesson on basic magic theory and shrug your shoulders.
>>32571933>Shit>Go pray, pray like you've never prayed before my son
>>32571933"So if it's being absorbed can I use it the same way you do instead of just leaving it there until I blow up? Also what's up with the tattoo?"
>>32572106Oh! You also tried to electrocute me
>>32571933‘So what you're saying is that you don't know what’s going on and you had us drag you down here so you could give us a lesson on basic magic theory and shrug your shoulders… and you tried to electrocute me.’‘I told what I had to say would likely be of little practical value to you. And I was certain my aim would strike true… mostly,’ he replies. You frown at him.You then turn your gaze down to your arm. For a moment you say nothing, until a desperate thought crops up.‘Wait, if it IS being absorbed, can I use it the same way you do instead of just leaving it there until I blow up? Also what's up with the tattoo?’Margus dons a thoughtful expression – you imagine you’ll probably see a lot of that while you’re down here – before he speaks again.‘I don’t believe so. To be able to manipulate magical energy requires a complete Mana Circuit – which is essentially a series of pathways within the body that allow magical energy to flow – and yours is cut.’‘Let me guess,’ you mutter dryly, ‘at the arm?’Margus nods, ‘As for the tattoo, I’m afraid I’m completely clueless.’‘Seems to be a recurring theme here,’ you observe. ‘So is that everything you can tell us?’‘Yes,’ Margus responds without hesitation.You sigh, running a hand through your silvery hair. You need some sleep, and some food, all this thinking and speculating is making you tired and hungry.With that, the impromptu interrogation draws to a close. Margus is marched off back to the brig (though Ryder grants him a different cell to spare him his colleague’s whinging), leaving you to ponder the day’s events and mysteries. Repair work is currently being undertaken on the ship, which you might be able to help with. On the other hand with all you’ve been told you doubt Ryder or Kyd would hold it against you if you just grabbed a bite to eat and flopped into bed.>What do you do?
>>32572449We're engineers and the ships messed up, its time to engineer!
>>32572449Help with the repairs
>>32572449>‘I don’t believe so. To be able to manipulate magical energy requires a complete Mana Circuit – which is essentially a series of pathways within the body that allow magical energy to flow – and yours is cut.’>‘Let me guess,’ you mutter dryly, ‘at the arm?So why the hell is it cut? Was Dagg doing magical shenanigans while we were sleeping? Also if it's being absorbed into us does it stay at the arm or does it spread out?
>>32572449Well, tired (and hungry) as you are, you’ll be damned before anyone claims you don’t earn your eats. You figure you are, technically speaking, an engineer, so you’d best get down to it. You head down to engineering to find Balfour and Nyra both looking rather worn down by the day’s event and you think you can see blood spatters on Nyra’s overalls.‘You okay?’ you inquire. The elf looks around at you, confusion evident. ‘You’ve got red on you,’ you explain.‘Oh, that’s nothing lad,’ Balfour says with a dismissive wave, ‘one of them boarders was creeping up on me while I was trying to coax some more power out of the engines. Nyra spotted him and gave him a good whack with her wrench, floored the poor sod and cracked open his skull.’‘I didn’t think I’d hit him that hard,’ she says, scratching her cheek with a finger.‘Ah, quit your worrying girl, he’s still alive. Besides, if you hadn’t got him he’d certainly have got me. Now,’ he says, turning to you, ‘I still think you need some good learning before we let you near the fancy stuff, but you know how to use a hammer and nail don’t you?’ you nod.(cont)
>>32572801(cont)‘Good, in that case, take this up to the top deck and help them fix up the starboard won’t you? It’s only patchwork but it’ll keep us going until we next stop at a dry-dock or someplace.’ The dwarf hands you a number of long, thin sheets of metal, along with a hammer and a jar of nails before shooing you out of engineering. If you didn’t know any better you’d swear he thought you were cursed or something. Looking at your arm you begin to wonder if that might just be the case.The trip up topside with the sheet metal is an arduous one as you navigate the staircases and other members of the crew rushing from one place to another to keep the airship up in the sky but you find yourself there in decent time. A number of crewmen are using pulley lifts to hang themselves over the edge of the deck so they can work on fixing the scars gouged into the vessel during the combat with the military ship.>Bring the crew the materials and go>Bring the materials and offer to help
>>32572817>Bring the materials and offer to helpThe dwarf told us to help
>>32572817>Bring the materials and offer to help
>>32572817(okay in hindsight that was a pretty fucking stupid set of choices to make)You heft the materials in both arms, trying not to lose any, and stroll over to the gaggle of crew slaving over the repairs.‘Fresh materials here,’ you call, setting it down gently next to a much depleted pile of sheet metal much like the stuff Balfour gave you. ‘Some more nails too… so how can I help?’The group of crewmen, five men and two women, glance back at you before sharing a collective look amongst themselves.‘You know how to put on a harness?’ one of them asks.>What’s a harness?>Yes (lie)>No
>>32572933>Absolutely, what do you take me for a idiot>Well you're right I am one>What is it
>>32572933>What’s a harness?>NoIm not dum swear on me mum
>>32572933‘What’s a harness? Also, no,’ you reply, hoping you don’t appear too dumb.‘S’no big deal,’ one of them tells you as he picks up what looks like a mess of belts and looping straps, ‘we’ll show you how to put it on. Dead simple really: all you do is put your arms and legs through the right holes, tighten it up, and we’ll do the rest. Sound like fun?’>If it helps then yeah, I guess>Not really
>>32573067>If it helps then yeah, I guess
>>32573067>>If it helps then yeah, I guess
>>32573067>If it helps then yeah, I guessWhat's the worst that can happen?>inb4 traitor cuts the harness causing us to go overboard
>>32573099>inb4 the life threatening situation regrows our magic circuit and we superman
>>32573067Well, you see no harm in obliging, Balfour sent you up to help after all.‘If it helps, then yeah I guess so.’‘Good man,’ the man – a lanky blond-haired crewman in an undershirt – says as he claps you on the shoulder before handing you the harness. As he professed, it’s not difficult to master; you step through the leg holes and pull it up to your waist before tightening it before threading your arms through the arm loops.‘So, what happens now?’ you ask.‘Well, we attach you to the carabineer here,’ he says, as he goes about attaching it to your harness, ‘make sure you’re firmly attached to the little pulley system we’ve got up here,’ he continues, checking over the equipment, ‘give you this – can’t help fix the old girl if you don’t have the right stuff after all,’ he goes on as he gives you a hammer, a set of nails and tucks a few sheets of metal under your armpit before walking you over to the edge of the deck. You get a sudden sinking feeling.‘Oh, make sure you hold on tight to those,’ the man suggests and tucks your arm in to keep a tighter hold of the sheets of metal.‘Why do I need to hold on tight?’ you squeak, though deep in your gut, you knew this was coming.‘Well, you know, if you drop them you’ll have to go get them. That’s kinda how it works around here? No one tell you that?’‘No,’ you say, feeling a little faint as you peer over the edge of the deck and take in exactly how far above ground you are, not that it isn’t a simply divine view.‘Oh, well, you know now. Good luck.’And with that, he nudges you overboard.>d20 for free fallin
Rolled 2>>32573282BUT I LOVED YOU
Rolled 2>>32573282We gon die
Rolled 14>>32573316>>32573333the gods have spoken
Rolled 17>>32573282Yay gravity!
>>32573282‘SHIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII–’ is all you can get out of your mouth before a sudden jolt makes you bite your tongue. Pain shoots through the muscle and you can taste blood. Oh well, it won't matter once you hit the ground.Miraculously, however, you’re not falling. You're held up in mid-air by the thick rope tied to the pulley system set up on the deck above you. Raucous laughter echoes from above the deck and you flush deep red as you realise you’ve been the target of a terrifying practical joke.After a moment the laughter dies down and all seven heads poke over the side of the deck.‘You alright down there man?’ the blond crewman who set you up calls, wiping his eyes.>Up yours>You could have killed me!>View’s fantastic, care to join me?
>>32573452>Love you too
>>32573452>>View’s fantastic, care to join me?
Rolled 4>>32573452>Pretend to be deadI mean seriously what's the worse that can happen?
>>32573452(d3 deployed, playing possum it is)For a moment, you think deep on all the meanest insults you can use to lash out at the grinning crewman. Instead, you think of something better. They like jokes? Well you’ll give them a joke.You say nothing, and let your limbs fall slack, head hanging loosely from your neck. The few titters and giggles soon change to worried murmurs.‘Hey? You still with us there? C’mon man say something,’ the blond man calls again, though unlike before he sounds like he’s on the way to shitting his breeches.>Keep the act going>Only joking!
>>32573630>Keep the act going
>>32573630>let out the highest pitch scream you can musterMake this fucker shit his pants
>>32573630Quickly raise both middle fingers.
>>32573630I love d3's
>>32573630Suddenly you open your mouth and scream as loud as you can. It’s a pretty awful, mangled sound with your aching tongue, but it does its job well enough, which is scaring the piss out of that bunch of yuksters who shoved you off the edge of an airship.It’s immature, but you can’t stop yourself cackling as you imagine their faces.‘Hey, NOT funny man.’‘Maybe you’ll remember that next time you decide to push me off the deck when we’re airborne!’ you retort. The blond crewman’s head reappears over the side of the deck.‘Eh… fair enough I guess,’ then he frowns.‘Hey… you dropped the stuff.’Shit.In your blind panic, it seems you’ve dropped the hammer, the nails, and all the sheet metal you were holding.‘That thing you said earlier? “If I drop it I’ll have to get it?” You didn’t mean that did you?’The crewman looks you over a moment before sighing and putting his hand to his face.‘I guess I’m partly to blame for this. We’ll pull you up and give you some more. No drops this time, honest.’‘Thanks,’ you say as they pull you up.It takes some getting used to (and some careful managing of exactly where you’re looking, “don’t look down” being more sage advice than you realised at the time), and some swinging about, but eventually you manage to nail enough sheets of metal to the flank of the airship to cover the ugly gaps gouged into the ship. As soon as you’re done, you’re hauled up, given an apology for dropping you off the side of the ship without any sort of warning, and now find yourself with little else to do now that the patch-job appears to be done with.>What do you do?
>>32573850Go back to dwarf bro or we could try to go play with that mages staff
>>32573850go to the chapel and pray like the good boy we are, and then fuck around with one of the magic staffs, fuck magic circuits and shit man, we break physics we can do magic if we fucking want to
>>32573850Report back to Balfour and Nyra.
We are never going to the chapel are we?
Rolled 10>>32573850Report back to boss
>>32573960(Not while the consensus suggests otherwise)>>32573850You figure you should probably go back down and let Nyra and Balfour know you’ve completed the task you were given them, though you think you’ll leave out the heart-attack inducing prank. In fact, you’d like to forget that altogether… though those screams they made when they thought you were dead…You shake it from your head as you make your way back the same route through the ship to engineering. The two engineers are perched on two seats looking exhausted and sweaty. Balfour takes long gulps from a dragonskin canteen while Nyra opens her collar and fans herself before undoing the braids that keep her maroon hair wound around the crown of her head like a wreath. It falls just below her neckline, and you’re staring…You shake your head and knock on the steel wall. Both crane their heads towards you, though neither get up.‘Ah, you’re back,’ Balfour says, ‘get it done did you?’‘Yeah, piece of cake,’ you lie. Well, not entirely; once you got started it wasn’t that difficult, though the wind currents knocked you about a little.‘Good, good. I think I’ll be having a quick kip here. What about you Nyra?’Nyra scrunches her eyes up and stretches, ‘I quite fancy a bite to eat and a bath. What about you Cown?’>Stay and offer to help>Go with Nyra to get something to eat>Other?
>>32573960Soon Anon I promise soon
>>32574115I love you anon>>32574110>Go with Nyra to get something to eatno arm wrestling
>>32574110>Go with Nyra to get something to eatI wanna engineer or go play witha wizards staff goddammit nyra
Rolled 6>>32574110Go with nyra to eat and question her on where we can get some weapons training, cause we will need it.
>>32574110>Go with Nyra to get something to eat
>>32574110‘Actually some food sounds pretty fantastic. I don’t think I’ve eaten since I got up and…’ you trail off. Balfour’s expression – or his eyes at least – seem grim, and Nyra’s expression has fallen. Smooth Cown, remind everyone about an attack that probably cost these guys a few of their friends why don’t you.‘Let’s just go get something to eat,’ you say. Nyra nods solemnly and picks herself up off her chair, fanning herself with a gloved hand a few more times.The walk to the canteen is a silent, awkward affair, but when you arrive, a familiar scent teases your nose, though you’re not entirely sure precisely why it’s familiar…Nyra on the other hand, appears to shoot out of her depression.‘Bacon…’ she whispers in a hushed tone, her eyes wide as saucers and her mouth creeping into a wide, excitable grin. She grabs you by the arm and pulls you into the canteen and a part of you wonders exactly how good bacon is if it has this effect on her.This time the queue is short, and each of you gets a generous helping of the stuff. ‘Ryder figured it’d be good for morale after the lashing we took,’ one of the ginger twins dishing out the food explains. He sports a bandaged shoulder, while his sibling appears to have escaped harm altogether.You find a quiet spot to sit down together, having spotted no one you know (and Nyra didn’t seem to single anyone out to you). The chirpy elf mechanic sandwiches several strips of the meat in between two slices of bread before raising it to her mouth and wolfing it down in a handful of bites. She sighs in satisfaction when she swallows the last of it before glancing at your bemused expression.(cont)
>>32574556(cont)‘Well go on, try it,’ she says.Well, here goes.What follows is a pretty delightful sensation; the smoked meat is crispy and crammed with flavour. Is it the best thing you’ve ever had? It’s hard to tell, given your pretty meagre palate, but it’s damned fine stuff, and it’s more than easy to see why it’s so popular.‘Good huh?’ she says, grinning.‘Yeah… yeah it is,’ you reply before digging into the rest.For a few minutes the only sound there is emanating from the two of you is the rustle of two hungry youths going through their food like it’s going out of style. All good things, however, must come to an end, and eventually your plates are cleaned. You release a modest belch before you can stop yourself, and you feel yourself flush. Nyra gives you a cheeky expression before smacking a fist against her chest and unleashing an even louder burp that echoes throughout the canteen.‘That was good stuff,’ she sighs in contentment.>Talk with Nyra
>>32574579So yeah, turns out i'm magic proof.
Rolled 7>>32574579Find out more about her and where to learn some fighting skills.
>>32574624this, mention that our arm could cause the universe to butt rape us
Rolled 9>>32574632And how the old lady is.
>>32574579‘So…’ you start, ‘it turns out that I’m magic-proof.’‘What?’‘Or my arm is – my left arm that is.’‘Uh…’‘Also seems that it might explode.’‘WHAT?!’ she shouts.‘Woah! Hey, just kidding,’ you lie, or you think you’re lying. Actually you still don’t know what the jig is with the arm and the crazy tats, for all you know that Margus guy was full of crap.‘But yeah earlier today when we were boarded, a warlock threw a fireball at me–’‘A fireball!?’ Nyra gapes.‘–and I cancelled it out, absorbed it, vanished it, whatever with my arm; itched like crazy and this strange tattoo appeared, then I totally saved the gunners… and that’s how most of my day went.’Nyra is speechless. Then she titters, and then before you know what’s going on she’s laughing. You don’t know exactly why she’s laughing but if it puts her in a good mood, well…‘So it is true then,’ she says when she stops guffawing.‘What is?’‘The rumours floating around. They said the new guy – that’s you, by the way – had some sort of strange power and that he went toe-to-toe with a group of warlocks in the starboard gunnery deck.’‘Yeah,’ you say, not entirely sure what else you can add to that, until another thought crosses your mind. ‘Hey, how’s Julianne?’‘Oh, she’s okay. She says thanks, by the way, for taking her to the infirmary… and I should thank you too. Julianne… she means a lot to me.’‘Yeah, Kyd said as much.’‘I don’t actually remember a lot of my time before I came here,’ she says, appearing as though she’s a thousand miles away, reflecting inwards. ‘Probably tells you how crappy my life was that I’ve erased my own memories of it. I remember Kyd taking care of me a lot, and spending time with Julianne in her old house, but anything before that… nothing. Julianne was the closest thing either of us had to a mother in our lives.’(cont)
>>32575028You can sympathise a little. While you doubt your life could ever compare to that of a slave’s, you and Dagg certainly didn’t have it easy growing up. Come to think of it, you can’t recall life with your folks that much either. You remember a small house, and bloodpox… not much else.‘Thanks,’ she says suddenly.‘What for?’‘For coming to my rescue all that time ago,’ she says; a small, but genuine smile on her face. You remember what she’s talking about. To you it feels like barely a few days ago, but you’ve been quite literally out of it a lot since then.‘It’s… fine. I just did what I thought was right. Besides I was pathetic, Ryder and the others did everything.’‘No, you did a lot. I thought that was it for me in there, and then you showed up. You looked like you’d topple over in a light breeze but you still stood up for me. It was brave of you. So… thanks.’And with that, she leans over the table and pecks you on the cheek before retracting herself and leaning her chin on her hand, still smiling. At you.>It was nothing>Gawp at her like a faggot>Other?
>>32575060>Gawp at her like a faggotWe have to
>>32575060>Other - Go bright red and babble like an idiot.
>>32575098Changing to >>32575115Its perfect, considering the fact that people are Cown's only weakness
Rolled 11>>32575115Do this yes.
>>32575115Time to spill the sphagooti
>>32575060(I enjoyed writing this far more than I should have)That’s probably the first time a girl’s kissed you. Actually, every time you’ve spoken with the elf girl is the longest time you’ve spent talking with a member of the opposite sex that wasn’t a fair amount older than you AND talking down to you like you’re something they’ve just scraped off the bottom of their shoes. So when she dropped that particular bombshell, well there’s only one thing you could do with any real certainty.Which is flush the deepest shade of red known to intelligent life and babble incoherently about how it was no big deal and you think her eyes are pretty and ohNineabovewhereonearthareyougoingwithallthesethoughts.Nyra seems very amused by your meltdown, giggling to herself. A few catcalls from the other tables only make it worse and it almost seems that the entire canteen hinges on your next action. Eventually it’s all too much and you just slam your head on the table to escape the embarrassment and wait for the chorus of laughter to die.‘Ah, cheer up lad,’ you hear the familiar voice of Balfour cry as he slaps you heartily on the back. ‘Not every day you get a kiss from a pretty thing like our Nyra.’You mumble something incoherent and keep your face firmly planted against the table. Balfour chuckles and pulls you up. Nyra eyes you expectantly, a twinkle in her eye. She’s still smiling.>Keep dropping the spaghetti>Try to change the subject>Talk to Balfour
>>32575408>Just shut up, don't talk to anyone>Only respond if directly questioned
>>32575408>It was nothingthen>Drop even more spaghettiBalfour pls
>>32575408Nut up and plant one on her lips!
>>32575494anything but this one
>>32575408Finally you regain enough control over yourself to mutter a low ‘Wasnuttin,’ and upon waiting for all the sniggering to stop, you take a deep breath, pray your face isn’t as red anymore, and pull yourself up to face Balfour, who has folded his arms and still shakes with the odd chortle.‘Aye lad?’ he asks.You open your mouth to speak but all that comes out is a strange squawking noise. Your face turns even redder than before and you just want this day to be over already. Nyra throws her head back and cackles along with the rest of the crewmen cloistered around the table. Heartless the lot of them, but a small part of you relishes the feeling of closeness your tomfoolery has brought about. For the first time in a while, you actually feel a little good about something, and not something uncertain like the strange stuff going on with your arm, but something concrete. Something real.‘Okay,’ you say, ‘okay, show’s over. You guys can go away and finish your meals now.’ Indeed, now that there appears to be no fresh way of embarrassing you, the rest of the crew appear to gradually lose interest, though some throw a few wolf whistles your way and you have a sinking feeling that “Loverboy” and “Cherry” will stick for a while.>I hope you're happy (to Nyra)>(Try to) Put it behind you and talk about something else
>>32575809>(Try to) Put it behind you and talk about something elseNo lashing out, we know better than that
>>32575809>I hope you're happy (to Nyra)
>>32575809>shut up and begin memorizing their faces>mastermind murder
>>32575809>(Try to) Put it behind you and talk about something elseEmphasis on try also where the hell are we going? Maybe she knows
Rolled 6>>32575809Try to put it behind you and talk about other stuff, like where the chapel is or the armory is at.
>>32576098>chapelI love you
>>32575809Oh yes, this moment will live in infamy for the rest of your days.Trying your best to retain what shreds remain of your dignity, you swallow and try to strike up a line of conversation that hopefully won’t lead back to that strange noise you made or your flustered, red face. Something like… like…‘Come to think of it, where are we going?’ you ask. The amused glint vanishes from Nyra’s eyes and even Balfour drops his good humour.‘We’re crossing the border apparently,’ Balfour says.‘The border? To where?’‘Between us and the Miloscz Protectorate,’ intones a voice from behind you, and everyone in the canteen turns to see Captain Ryder standing at the entrance. You feel a sudden chill and earnestly hope that he didn’t bear witness to your disgraceful performance.‘I must say I’m impressed though, Cown,’ Ryder says with a wry smile, ‘I don’t think I’ve ever seen a man turn that shade of red before.’You hang your head in your hands as another wave of laughter ripples through the canteen. Ryder raises a hand though, and the laughter abruptly dies.‘But this is good. Pretty much everyone I haven’t told yet is here, so that means I’ll save myself some time.‘We’re in a bad situation gentlemen, no doubt about that. With the Parliament slaughtered by that snake Theodoric, there is no one who can prove I am who I say I am. The fault is mine. I should have set up contingencies for this sort of thing… but that is irrelevant, and we are where we are. Fortunately we have something to go on. Over the past month I’ve learned that Theodoric has been pushing the provisional government to send expeditions on incursions into the Milosz Protectorate.’A few gasps and murmurs follow Ryder’s proclamation.(cont)
>>32576304(cont)‘I know; if the Protectorate found out about this, we’d have a conflict on our hands, although I’m sure the border garrisons would argue quite convincingly that we’re already at war. Regardless, the fact remains that there is something within the Milosz Protectorate that Theodoric must want, or need. We are going to find it and with any luck, it’ll be something that will expose our friend the Count for the murderous traitor that he is.’‘Sounds good Captain,’ one crewman calls, and a chorus of affirmatives follow. Ryder smiles, it’s not a particularly nice smile either, it’s a hunter’s smile, a patient smile.‘Theodoric made one mistake, and that’s the fact that he’s quite clearly left us out of whatever twisted equations he’s made. Mark my words gentlemen, we’re going to drag this snake through the muck and then we’re going to barbeque the bastard.’ With that, he turns smartly on his heel and strides towards the entrance to the canteen. ‘Be ready for anything lads, when or if he finds out what we intend, he’ll likely throw all he can at us to try and stop us.’‘You can count on us Captain,’ Balfour declares loudly, and again, a chorus of affirmations follows.‘I know I can Balfour,’ Ryder says, and without looking back, he strides out of the canteen.The canteen retains a moment of silence upon the Captain’s departure before slowly, gradually; chatter sparks up again, most of it concerning the imminent border crossing.>Well that was interesting>Talk or ask about something else
>>32576349>Well that was interesting>Talk or ask about something elseTalk about what the Milosz Protectorateis like
Rolled 4>>32576349That was interesting, ask about the protectorate
>>32576349‘Okay, that explained a few things, but what’s this Milosz Protectorate place?’ you ask. Balfour looks at you incredulously, Nyra on the other hand, appears curious too, but significantly less so than you are.‘Uh, lived in Harlowesburg all his life: preoccupied with scratching a living. Didn’t leave me a lot of time for studying up on other places… or anything for that matter.’‘Ah right, sorry lad. Well, the Milosz Protectorate is – as you might have gathered – one of our neighbouring countries. Most of their territory is highlands; mountains and hills and the like, most of their cities and towns are literally built into the mountainsides, or even inside them, a little like my kinfolk. They’re a pretty hardy folk, and because of the geography they’ve gained a bit of a knack for defensive fighting.‘We’ve been at war with them a few times in the course of our history – much the same as with the other three nations bordering us – but gains on both sides tended to be small. Tough as they are, they’re awfully cautious most of them are, while on our end their hills and forts tended to bleed our armies dry.’ You note the way he refers to Visa as ‘us’, despite his dwarven heritage.(cont)
>>32576709(cont)‘As for where exactly we’ll be going? Well, Ryder said that he didn’t exactly know himself yet. But I’ll wager it’ll be pretty simple if Theodoric’s throwing bodies into the breach. All we’ll need to do is follow the corpses.’A grim analogy, but you suppose it fits.You exchange a few more pleasantries with Balfour, including asking him where the chapel and armoury are, the former because you realise you’re rather mortal and probably have a sin or two to confess, and the latter because you’d rather like something to back you up in case your magic-eating leftie goes up against something it can’t crack. You also figure you need to learn how to fight, and someone there might be able to teach you, or at least point you in the direction of someone who can and isn’t too busy.Nyra also bids her leave, though she seems strangely reluctant to meet your eyes. Maybe she’s feeling sorry about the humiliation she caused you, but you don’t know and you don’t ask, you’d rather get that out of your mind and focus on something else.>Go to the chapel>Go to the armoury>Go to your room and hit the hay
>>32576734>Go to the chapelpls
>>32576734>Go to the chapelIts time
>>32576734>Go to the armoury
Rolled 8>>32576734Chapel then armory then sack
>>32576734The chapel is rather small. A handful of modest pews sit arranged in rows before an equally modest altar, behind which stand nine stone statues.The first of these is the Patriarch, the father, and he appears in the image of a king, or what you imagine a king would look like, in fine, resplendent wear. Next to him is the Mother, his wife, her beneficent gaze touching the hearts of those she chose to bless. Then there is the Matron, the only daughter of the Mother, clad in simple white robes, she brought the gift of health to whoever earned her favour.Next is the Groundskeeper, clutching a hoe, who watches over the land, and the patron of farmers across the continent. Beside him is the Hunter, a spear in one hand and a bow slung across his back, his three hunting hounds are held on three separate leashes, each straining to be unleashed. Further along is the Watchman, whose torch bears the light of truth. Then there is the Warrior, clad in thick armour and bearing his signature curved shield and thick broadsword. Flanking him is the enigmatic Outsider, his face undiscernible beneath his hood as are his many schemes and tricks. Finally lies the Gatekeeper, the youngest of the seven children of the Mother, who keeps watch over the boundary between this world and the next.(cont)
>>32577270You know this, but you can’t remember a time when you’ve ever had to know. You’ve never even set foot in a church before, and all of a sudden, finding yourself upon hallowed ground makes you feel like you’ve committed some cardinal sin.‘Hello? Is anyone there?’ a voice calls softly. Glancing around for the source of the voice, your eyes settle upon a figure in sea grey robes. Clouded blue eyes greet you, and a cowl is draped across the head, but the figure is unmistakably that of an adult woman. Her face is angular, and something about it reminds you of Nyra and Kyd. Is she an elf too? But there don’t seem to be any protrusions beneath her cowl denoting the pointy ears of her kind.‘Hello?’ she calls again, despite the fact that her eyes fall across you more than twice. You realise quite suddenly that she must be blind.>Quietly excuse yourself>Greet her and introduce yourself
Rolled 5>>32577290Greet her, don't be an ass, introduce yourself.
>>32577290>>32577290>Greet her and introduce yourself
>>32577290‘Hello,’ you say. The woman perks up and turns her head towards you.‘Ah, I thought I heard someone,’ she says, before cocking her head in an inquisitive manner. ‘Yours is not a voice I’m familiar with? Are you perhaps our new arrival?’‘Yeah, I’m Cown, and you are, miss?’‘Oh I’m sorry, how rude of me. I am Elyri, the one who looks after this place of worship and its modest congregation. What can I do for you child?’>Fire away
>>32577621On second thoughts belay that. I'm going to have to end this here, had no idea it was quite this late.As always thanks for following this, thoughts and critique is appreciated and I'll see you in the next three days or so.Toodles
Outsider a best