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/qst/ - Quests

"Glennwood University is more than your typical American college: a history of prestigious alumni spanning 60 years, professors from all walks of life who take great interest in their students' success, and a 91.5% hire rate after graduation.

GU graduates learn hands-on experience that are vital to being competitive in the modern job market. We'll make sure you're a Major player in your career!

Competitive, premium scholarships awarding an industry high of $5000 are available for all students! We at GU believe in a debt free college experience.

The students' safety is GU's top priority, and we have been ranked in the top 10 safest campuses in the state!

We take pride in providing a complete education and plenty of safe life experiences. Our graduate approval ratings are 3rd in the state!

Apply online today to begin your GU-life today!"

You flip the brochure around.

"GU is home to 5 championship winning teams! With one of the most prestigious records in the country, GU is the number one supporter of student athletes in the country!"

The rest of the page is filled a list of sport team names and years.

You turn the tan brochure over in your hands, making sure to avoid looking at the thin pink borders - the midday sun reflects off them with a blinding intensity.

Tall, glass-paned buildings stand alongside squat, rustic brick ones, separated by primly cut lawns peppered with ancient trees. Smaller trees line the sidewalks at exact intervals. At the foot of each tree is a circle of bushes (or a half circle if it is directly against the sidewalk).

Not a single plant has leaves hanging from its branches. The bright sun does nothing to stop the biting winter chill from blowing. Further down the sidewalk it opens into a plaza where an ornate fountain lies dormant. Every step along the way is spotless, not even the errant leaf in view.

You look up at a sign, one of many you have come across:

"Welcome to Glennwood Univeristy!
Where Life Becomes an Experience!"

> Whose life is becoming an experience today?

> [] You are Brianna la Croix, and you're adrift
> [] You are River Bellman, and you're seeking
> [] You are Amy Hawke, and you're escaping
> [] You are Nathan Bookchild, and you're alone
Welcome to CLQ. What is this, I'm sure you're asking?

Well, it's pretty much what it says on the tin. You are attending Glennwood University as a student, and plenty of college shenanigans shall ensue.

Now, for some readers, the names of potential characters might be familiar - possibly from some Dungeon divers in another story? Well, fear not! I have permission to do this.

So votes will be open until this devil of a shift ends at least - gotta lock some people in a room and, well, observe.

Ironic how life lines up sometimes.

And yes, the MC you choose will be permanent. I likely will not be doing PoV shifts all that often, if at all. This is the beginning of a new story, with each character approaching each other as strangers.

So take this as your chance to have some fun with this loveable cast!

I'll be around for questions and the like.

Let's get this show on the road.
> You are River Bellman, and you're seeking.
Is this the movie crashing quest of our generation?
>You are River Bellman, and you're seeking
>[] You are Nathan Bookchild, and you're alone
> You are Nathan Bookchild, and you're alone
>> [] You are Amy Hawke, and you're escaping
Do you want it to be?
>>1510302 (OP)

> You are Amy Hawke, and you're escaping
> [] You are Amy Hawke, and you're escaping
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> [] You are Brianna la Croix, and you're adrift

I don't even know who these characters are but lets pick a name
They are the names of the main cast of Dungeon Life Quest, one of the more prolific quests that has been on the board. Vox wrote/QMed it, and it has been one of my more enjoyed and favored stories that I have been involved in.
>prestigious university
>scholarships...industry high of $5000
>debt free

> [] You are Brianna la Croix, and you're adrift
> [] You are Nathan Bookchild, and you're alone
Don't mind me, just dropping by to confirm that this has my Seal of Approval.
>> [] You are River Bellman, and you're seeking

fuck bitches get degree
river bellman, your seeking
this seems like a good idea
I also have no idea what dungion life quest is like
I've /been/ alive. I'm taking a break from questing to prepare Cinderella Sanction Quest and because my son is visiting.
I am glad to hear! How are the two of you doing? Anything of note? You know we care about you Vox.
Here is the link:
Notice the high amount of Epic level threads.
This ain't my blog (I have an actual blog for that); let's let Observer do his thing.
> [] You are Amy Hawke, and you're escaping




Looks like things are tied. A tie breaker would be lovely, if only so I can get the next update cookin'!

10 more minutes until I call the final vote, if not I'll choose myself!
>> [] You are River Bellman, and you are seeking

I wanted to go with nathan cause he had the best name imo. But this chad has potential.
River it is!

and maybe a named character will show up again later

Acquiring coffee, then update time
You are River Bellman, and you're seeking your dorm hall to escape the chill. The problem you're running into is that you are completely lost, none of the buildings have plaques, and you haven't seen a soul walking outside in the past hour. You don't even have your student ID yet to scan yourself inside, either.

Weren't there supposed to be a past student who gave you the guided tour when you hopped out of the taxi? That's what the videos on the school's website showed about freshman orientation.

Frowning, you slip the brochure into the pocket of your ROTC hoodie - freshly bought, and you're already finding it's too thin. Retrieving your phone from one of your tan cargo pants' many pockets and pulled open the campus map you've been staring at since before you arrived. Adjusting the duffelbag over your shoulder, you try and find the plaza on the - oh, here it is. Okay so you are around the center of campus, and your dorm - wait, what was it called agai-

"Hey!" A man yelled somewhere nearby, making you jump and look around. He isn't in sight. "Stop, what do you think you-"

He is cut off mid sentence, making a strained "oof" noise. You hear someone running to your right, and you move forward to see what happened. As you do a woman sprints into view with her short black hair streaming behind her. In the middle of the sidewalk where she came, a man in a Security shirt is holding his gut while struggling to stand up.

In a single deft movement the runner steps onto the concrete ring before leaping towards the fountain in the middle of the plaza, her stripped jacket flairing out like wings on either side of her backpack. She catches the side of the fountain and begins climbing towards the top, an easy 20 feet up.

The security guard pushed himself up to his feet and is talking into a walkie talkie with rage in his eyes.

"Yo!" The woman on the fountain calls out.

"Uh." You look back at her sitting on top of the fountain, staring blankly.

"I don't know who you are," She says, nearly talking over herself while looking at the guard. "But that guy's pissed, and if you know what's good for ya, you'd get out of here."

Has she been crying, you think.

"Uh." You repeat. "But I'm a student."

The woman stops scanning the area around the plaza and locks her gaze with yours. She frowns.

"Oh, a freshman. Fuck, well," She lifts a hatch on the side of the massive fountain. "Welcome to Glennwood, I guess. Life's quite the experience here, if you can't tell." The woman laughed darkly to herself.

"You'll learn. I'll see you around."

With that she slips her way into the fountain, the hatch door closing behind her. The Security guard, having finally caught his breath, begins to march towards the fountain.

Wait, no. He's looking directly at you.

What the fuck is going on.

> [] "Uh. What was that?"
> [] "Hi, I'm lost?"
> [] "Yeah I think I'm just going to go to my dorm now,"
> [] Write-in
>> [] "Uh. What was that?"
>"Uh. What was that?"
>> [] "Uh. What was that?"
Welcome to Observer Questing, where even on my day off I'm chronically running all around town.

Once I can settle long enough to write, I'll get this going!

Thanks for your patience, I gotta slowly get back into the swing of things again
> [] "Uh. What was that?"
"Uh. What was that?" You say as the security guard approaches, pointing a thumb towards the fountain as you readjust your duffel bag.

The guard's nostrils flare. He stops directly in front of you, a mess of blonde hair spilling out from under his partially dislodged tan ballcap. He is middle aged with a beer gut and a stubble that hasn't seen a razor in days. His outfit reminds you of the officers that would inspect your uniforms during boot camp.

He would have failed inspection at a glance, and you were never noticed the small flaws the officers would point out.

Over the sloppily tucked in collared shirt and wrinkled pants he wore a utility vest. Compared to the combat vests you used, his looked like a cheap knock off.

Probably is, you think to yourself. There is no way campus security would be given military grade equipment.

He shifts his weight while catching his breath, and you spot a baton on the back of his hip.

"Student ID?" He interupts your thoughts with a curt order.

"No sir." You respond automatically.

The two of you stare at each other for a second. Mentally kicking yourself, you say. "Sorry, sir, I-"

He narrows his eyes. "Are you bullshittin' me, girl?"

"What? No, I-"

"It's a simple fuckin' question." He continues, talking over you. "Student ID, now."

"I don't have one, I-"

"You're new here, right?" His tone is cold. "You think I haven't heard that excuse before? You're comin' with me, now."

You blink. Are you seriously about to get arrested on your first day - wait, can he even arrest you?

"Wait," You reach for your bag. "Seriously, I have my registr-"

The guard pulls the baton from its holster. You freeze. "You better not try anything girlie. First you insult me, fucking lying to me, now try and pull something?" His voice is heated as he glares into your eyes.

A part of your mind is screaming 'I wasn't trained for this.'

Another is whispering that you didn't see a nametag.

"You're comin' with me, to Disciplinary." He repeats. "I don't fuckin' care you're not a student. Natalia will sort you right out."

You feel yourself tense, ready to react the second he moves towards you. You're off balance due to the duffel bag and not anywhere close to a proper stance.

Fuck, your instructors would be extremely disappointed with you right now.

You hear honking from behind you, and in an instant all of the guard's aggression disappears. In a swift motion he holsters his baton while taking off hit hat in a sweeping motion that simultaneously fixes his hair and waves the hat in greeting.

He casually takes a step away from you. You respond by retreating five, turning towards the approaching sound.

Your hopes are immediately dashed when you spot a golf cart with with "Security" spelled out along the front hood. There are two more guards sitting inside.

The cart pulls up beside the two of you as the first guard readjusts his hat, a lopsided smirk having appeared on his face when you weren't looking.

"Hey there Janey." He says in a sickeningly smooth voice. "How's cart duty?"

The guard in the passenger seat climbs out and walks towards the blonde guard.while the other blatantly ignores him.

Wait, she's looking directly at you. Your hopes are rekindled when you notice her concerned expression.

The guard approaching the blonde one points towards you. "Larry, this her?"

"Yeah, Roger," Larry lazily drawls while scratching his nose. "I just told ya it's her. Caught up to her myself after she tried to gutpunch me."

The woman in the cart rolls her eyes. "Fuck your bullshit, we all saw you out of breath at PT last week."

The Roger nods. "'Sides, Roosters generally aren't in ROTC. Jane, you got her?"

Larry flicks his gaze to your chest - and you get the distinct impression he wasn't reading the bolded letters. "She still needs to be goin' to Natalia."

"Honey," Jane says. "Come on, I'll give you a ride."

Larry shrugs, and you hurry to climb into the passenger seat, setting the duffel bag on your lap.

Her eyes flick to Larry and narrow into a glare. "How about you finish your patrol. Rog, need a ride?"

He waves her off. "I think I'll take the long way around." Larry finally looks away from you to lock eyes with him.

"Right." Jane immediately puts the golf cart into drive and drives around the two men. They are still glaring at each other when you drive down one of the four paths leading from the plaza.

The two of you drive in silence for about a block before Jane speaks up. "Larry is a sleazy dick, but don't worry about him. He's harmless." Jane chuckles to herself. "Lazy, too. Wouldn't hurt a fly if it landed in his food as he was 'bout to eat it."

"I just got here." You say, anger flooding into your voice.

She nods to herself. "Freshman, got it. So," She glances over to you. "What happened?"

> Well, what do you tell the guard?
>> Well, what do you tell the guard?
Tell the guard about the other guard being a shifty two-faced fake of a guard, and that that kind of shit would get a shifty bullshit guard with no nametape a shallow grave where she came from, not that that's a threat, mind, and she's had certainly no part in that, but, maybe a stern warning for the guard is in order.
Tell them what happened, ask why they were chasing after the girl.

Also, why does everyone keep refering to us as a girl? River Bellman is a guy right?
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This was the original River
Describe the events of totally-not-Amy to the guard, express confusion about fatass' actions.
Honest and Faithful Retelling of Events, gotcha.

Well fuck you yuri faggots, Im out.
Enjoy your lesbian sluts
Guess you'll miss out on the fun, then. Cheers!
"Okay." You take a second to collect yourself, to breathe, to try and clear your head. You didn't notice you had been clenching the strap of your duffel bag tight enough that your knuckles were white. You watch the color slowly flood back into them as you relax and flex your hand.

"Well, I'd only been dropped off here maybe an hour before this all happened, so I was walking around trying to find my dorm."

Jane looks forward again. "Which dorm are you in, honey?"

"I, um. Shit." You open your duffel bag partway. "I knew it, I swear. My papers are in here somewhere, I know it's something hall, uh."

"Don't worry, I'll take you there later, alright? Hey, what's your name?"

You look up at her. "River."

Jane smiles at you. "Hi River. Alright, so, you were walking around campus, and you found your way to the Plaza. What happened next?"

You nod. "Right. I was trying to orient myself on the map you have online, and the next thing I knew that guard back there was hollerin' at someone, then she came running to the fountain. I'm pretty sure she punched him in the gut, and seemed intent on staying as far away from him as possible."

"She?" Jane prompts.

"Yeah. I didn't catch her name. Had black hair, could climb up the fountain real quick. She said something to be about stayin' away from the guard and, well, I think I should've listened."

"Like I said, don't worry. Larry is harmless."

"Harmless my ass." Jane shoots a glance at you. "He's a shifty one, two-faced too. Man runnin' around threatenin' young women, wearing a security hat and no nametag?" You take a second to look over Jane's outfit - there, a tag saying Jane Volstoy. "See, you're wearing one, but Mr. Larry wasn't? Like I said, shifty. Back where I'm from, we don't take kindly to shifty bullshit guards with no nametag."

"Larry lost his nametag last week," Jane says. "We've got a few new recruits as well, so not everyone has one yet."

"See, you say that, yet Larry comes up to me after the black haired girl gets away, and he's acting mighty aggressive towards me, drawing attention to his baton, drawing it right before you showed up. Back home, middle aged man threatenin' a young girl like me? There'd be a shallow grave waiting for him by sunrise."

Jane openly balks. "Mind," You continue. "That's not a threat,"

"I hope so." She cuts in. "Around these parts, we don't take kindly to threats on our staff."

"Certainly." You continue. "But, maybe a stern warning for Mr. Larry is in order."

"This girl who was running, you say." Jane says. "How did she, you said she got away? Did she jump off the fountain? We didn't see anyone else."

"No, she opened a hatch on the fountain. Talked to me, then lept right in."

Jane pulls the golf cart in front of one of the many 5-10 story buildings. She sits for a moment before saying. "Well, River, I will take this up with my superiors. I'll investigate this hatch in the fountain myself, I had no idea. How high up was it?"

> [Cont.]
"Right near the top, Ms Volstoy. And about that Mr. Shifty Larry?"

Jane shoots you a look. "Yeah, I'll talk to them about his conduct, but he's been around longer than any of us, so I don't know. Here, come on." Jane climbs out of the cart and walks towards the building's entrance. "We'll figure out the rest in here."

"Um." You step out of the cart. "How do you know this is the correct building? I'm sorry, but they all look the same to me."

Jane smiles at you. "Right, freshman. The orientation leaders explain it better, but, anyway, this is one of three administration buildings. This one in particular," A gust of wind picks up, causing the two of you to begin shivering. "Here, come inside."

You approach the doors. Your escort pulls a phone from one of her pockets and swipes it in front of the door dramatically. Silently, the doors slide open to reveal an empty waiting room with five plexiglas windows in the far wall beside a single door. It reminds you of a hospital.

"See," Jane goes on, oblivious to your reaction. "Everything you need is on your phone."

"So, why didn't the building have a sign saying what it was? Mighty confusion to try and find your way, I feel."

Jane leads you through the door with another wave of her phone (You are not going to get used to that) and leads you down a hallway with multiple intersections. Not a single pathway is marked with a sign. The elevator's doors open without a sound as well.

"It's all state of the art, you see. Everything, I mean everything is on your phone." She pushes floor 10 after you enter the elevator. You barely feel the sensation of upward movement. "The app the school provides to you is what shows the signs to the buildings, classrooms, even professors' offices. It's nifty, if I say so myself."

You rub the back of your neck, uncertain. "That sounds mighty complicated to me, what if-" The doors open again without warning, the sound of a busy office flooding your ears. The abrupt change makes you flinch back momentarily.

Jane smiles again. "Most of the rooms are soundproofed, at least in the modern buildings. Here, this way." She leads you through the office space, workers in cubicles that reached the ceiling took phone calls and worked on large, thin computers while sitting behind modestly sized wooden desks. As you pass, you notice some have their doors closed, and not a sound comes through. As you walk further down the winding paths, you come across more closed cubicles.

At some point, you realize that the noise level has dropped to complete silence except for your muted footsteps on the carpeted floor.

"Intense, isn't it?" Jane murmurs.

You nod. It is more than a little unsettling to say the least, especially how everything seems to be either tan, white, or grey. A dim horror dawns on you when you realize you have no idea how to get back to the elevator.

> [Cont.]
"Don't worry, we're almost there." Jane takes a turn around one of the many intersections to a an ornately carved wooden door. Opening it she reveals what appears to be a large lounge, complete with leather couches and chairs, bookshelves stocked with richly decorated covers, and multiple paintings including one of a blazing fireplace. Even the lights are emitting a yellowish glow rather than the white of fluorescent bulbs.

Over the carved door on the opposite wall it says Head of Disciplinary Affairs. Underneath the paned-glass image of an open book on the door is the name Natalia Bookchild.

You look to Jane in confusion. She gives you a smile in return. "Don't worry. This'll just take a minute. It's procedure, you see. Take a seat, I'll see if she's available."

Jane gives you another reassuring smile before crossing the room in long, quick strides. The creaking of poorly oiled hinges as she slips into the door, oddly enough, helps set your nerves at ease. You take a seat on the leather couch, and you have to take a second to revel in the sensation.

It is the most comfortable chair you have ever sat in, with the perfect mix of softness and firmness.

Not a few minutes have passed when the door you entered through opens. The first think you notice is that the guy is walking with crutches and has a cast on his left leg. The second thing you notice is his sheepish smile when he notices you.

"Oh, hey." He says. "I wasn't expecting anyone to be here." He turns away to move towards a couch on the opposite side of the room.

"No, it's alright." You say. "I certainly wasn't expecting to be here."

He pauses for a second before lowering himself onto a couch. The two of you fall silent as he finds the best position to rest his left leg.

Out of all the weirdness that has transpired in the past 30 minutes, this is a surprising return to normalcy.

Now you need to think of what to say, if anything.

> What shall we say to the injured newcomer?
> Or say nothing, and face the music
> "So...what're you in for?"
Votes will extend until tomorrow, we'll see if I can write more when working than when I'm on my day off.

Thoughts on stuff would be cool, if you have any. Might as well carry over the intense desire for feedback from DLQ, eh?

I'll be around for a few for questions. Sorry for the slow start, but hopefully when I do post it's worth the wait! (And will only get better, maybe)
> "So...what're you in for?"
Also, hot damn, that is some impressive exposition.
This quest is shit.

Not because lesbians but because Observer retardation.

Kill yourself.
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Thanks for your support! I think I might write even more today thanks to your encouragement!

See, this is how I know you have my best interests at heart. I didn't know you cared so much!

Oh, make sure to vote, too, since you're obviously already trying to be my number 1 fan.
>> What shall we say to the injured newcomer?
Compare notes; try to find a way to break out and sequence break.
So, it's all phone based? ... what if they trade phones? Or maybe pilfer one of the staff's phones? Or turn off the phone?

Remember, when pulling the trigger make sure to place the barrel of the gun in your mouth and aim directly upwards.

Its the only way to ensure you obliterate the brain stem and kill yourself as opposed to merely paralyzing yourself for life.

Are you speaking from experience, here? Sounds like you tried to do this to yourself and failed.
These are all good questions! Do you want to ask our injured friend about this as well, or save that for another time?
>"So...what're you in for?"
Hey all, thanks again for your patience. I'm kinda wrecked, so the next update will be tomorrow.

Votes open, feel free to pick my brain if ya want, etc.
A few minutes pass. The lights are pulsing slightly, and you find yourself examining the room again. The darker brown hues of the walls, couches, and floor (hardwood, you notice) along with the yellow light from a handful of lamps give the fire painting a life-like quality. It is wider than both your arms extended outwards and reaches up to the ceiling, something about a blazing fire with the words Disciplinary Affairs overhead on the adjacent wall sets you ill at ease.

Why would going to find your dorm be so damn complicated?

"So, uh." You speak up. The guy across the room perks up. "What're you in for?"

He blinks. "What?"

"Well, I just thought, since, I mean." You point towards the sign over the door. "This appears to be where troublemakers are brought."

"Wait, did you do something?"

"No, no, I'm just caught up in a bit of a misunderstanding. I had a run-in with a shifty security guard who was chasin' after a girl, before he came threatenin' me. Next thing I know I've been escorted up here."

"Shifty?" He leans towards you, looking intently. "Who was it, do you know?"

"Yeah, but not right away." You find yourself relaxing as you repeat your story.

The man rubs his left thigh after you're done, processing what you said. "So, after everything, Jane led you here?"

"Like I said, she said it was procedure."

"What were you doing, walking around, before this Larry showed up?"

"Tryin' to find my dorm."

"You-re-" Realization dawns on his face. "Ah I see. A freshman."

You cock your head to the side. "People keep sayin' that like it means something, and I think I'd like to know what they're talking about."

"Oh, well it's something-"

The door to Natalia's office (you assume) opens as Jane pokes her head out. "Hey, River, she's ready for you-" She stops mid sentence when she sees the other person in the room. He gives her a small wave and another of those sheepish smiles. "Oh!" Jane blinks a couple times, shaking her head. "Nate! Sorry, I didn't, um, see you there, didn't hear you come in, I mean."

"Yeah I was just stopping by, was talking with, um," He looks back over at you. "River, was it?"

You nod. "River Bellman."

"Anyway," Jane cuts in. "River, come on in, we'll finish everything real quick."

Nate holds up a hand as you go to stand. "Jane, sorry, but why does River need to be here right now?"

"I don't know what you mean." Jane says, hiding halfway behind the door.

"Well, she was just going to her dorm, right?" Nate pushed himself up onto his crutches - stepping on his left leg, you notice. "I can help her get there, no problem."

"Um." Jane shifts her weight. "I can't ask that of you Nathan, not in your condition."

He shrugs. "No, it's fine. It's on my way back home anyway. So," He glances at you, a small smile spreading on his face. "Wanna go?"

Jane is glaring daggers at you.

> [] "Yeah, thanks Nate."
> [] "Nah, I think I oughtta go settle this real quick."
> [] Write-in
>> [] "Yeah, thanks Nate."
>[] "Nah, I think I oughtta go settle this real quick."

I'd like to make sure that that guard gets at least a complaint on file, he was completely out of hand
>> [] "Nah, I think I oughtta go settle this real quick."
>> [] Write-in
"But if you want to wait, I would be glad to walk with you!"
Calling it for meeting with Natalia.

I hope you're enjoying your time at GU!
"Nah." You set your duffel bag on the couch, looking towards Jane for permission. As she visibly relaxes, she give you a nod. "I think I oughta figure this out. But Nathan, I would certainly like to have you walk me to my dorm." You give him a small smile. "Maybe I won't have any more run-ins with the local law between now and then."

He give you a broad smile. "Alright, I'll wait here."

"Nate," Jane says. "Weren't you here for something?"

He waves her off as you approach the door. "Nothing important, was nearby and wanted to ask mom something. I can just ask her after, or text her if she has a meeting or something." He gives you a small wave as you walk through the door into a small hallway.

The hallway has a pair of paintings on each wall, four in total. Their artwork is highly detailed, and you can only get the general sense of the flow within and between the works. Like the painting in the waiting room/lounge, there is a lot of fire in each painting - though, as you walk along, you see it appears to be telling a narrative. Castles are built up from simple huts only to burn, get reconstructed into more modern looking buildings, then get burned down again. The end of this string of cities is a long stretch of a modern city. For the last stretch, rather than burn down, buildings are left to decay until newer building are erected in front of them, hiding the older ones. Instead of soldiers and knights fighting in the streets, there is only the occasional spray of graffiti, doorways with crime scene tape crisscrossing its entrance, and the general deterioration.

At the end of the hall is another door, again with a window like those at the church back home. Something about the quality of the glass and of the colors that make up the open book makes you think that they are rather old. Jane holds the knob for the door and pauses. You stop and give her a curious look.

"Remember what I said." she says. "It's procedure to bring you here." She opens the door and motions for you to go in.

As you step through the door, a wall of light floods your vision. You instinctively raise your hand up to try and cover your eyes. After a few moments, your eyes slowly adjust enough to let you take in the room.

In sharp contrast to the rest of the building, with its efficient use of space, and with the lounge, with its somewhat cluttered but comfortable arrangement, Natalia's office is massive. At least 30 feet away in front of you sits a desk with a square chair behind it and a large computer screen to one side. It is cast in harsh shadow, light flooding in from the three floor to ceiling windows behind it shaped like half of a hexagon. The sunlight only extents roughly halfway across the room, separating the dark half of the room from the lit half with an extreme line along the walls - the other half of the hexagon, you realize. The shadow cast by the desk extends along the floor, stretching and warping from the angle of the incoming sunlight.

> [Cont.]
"River Bellman, Freshman, Student ID number 412405, step forward." The curt voice of a woman emanates from the desk. The light of the desktop turn on, revealing a smartly dressed woman with dark hair pulled up in a harsh bun. Her piercing eyes glint as she stares at you.

Wait, didn't Nathan say mom a little while ago? The resemblance is uncanny.

You step forward, hesitantly. You realize that there is nothing in the office except for the desk, yourself, and an extraordinary amount of space.

You would be lying through your teeth if you said you weren't intimidated. A shiver runs down your spine when you step on the line on the floor where the sunlight and dark shadows meet.

"That's far enough." The woman looks away from you to check the computer screen for a moment when you stop walking towards her. There isn't a chair in front of her desk, you notice.

"Can you confirm that you are in fact River Bellman, Student ID 412405?" Her tone is cold, with a touch of annoyance.

"Um." You manage. "Yeah, I'm River."

"Is that ID number correct?" When she speaks the words art quick and perfectly enunciated. She flicks her eyes to you after she asks her question.

"I, uh. I don't know?" You shrug. "I just got here, and my registration papers are in my bag."

The sound of the woman clicking tongue echoes slightly in the large space. "I see you have not completed your installation of the required Glennwood University application. It is still before the first day of classes, so you will not receive a fine." She types out a note on her keyboard.

"A fine?" You blink. "I'm sorry, I didn't think-"

"You will have three days to complete the installation and activation of the app, or you will be charged." She talks over you. Finishing her note, she casts her intense gaze back towards you. "Now, River Bellman, before we go into the situation that brought you here, allow me to introduce myself. My name is Natalia Bookchild, Head of Disciplinary Affairs. I am the last woman on this campus you want to cross, and you have already left me with a poor first impression."

"I don't understand." You say. "I was simply on my way to my door, I didn't do anything."

"You see, Ms. Bellman." Natalia interjects. "Again, you are contributing a poor impression. Allow me to explain exactly what you have done." She types something into her keyboard again.

> [Cont.]
"First, you have already been informed about your failure to comply with the installation of the university application. You have received your warning, here, and it is the only warning that will be given."

"Secondly, you were caught trespassing on campus property without an assigned guide, which is required for all visitors. Your phone application allows you to walk on campus without the need for an assigned guide, but it is required to be turned on and on your person at all times. This is your first and only warning, all future infractions will result in a fine applied to your account."

Natalia continues as if reading off a series of criminal charges. You feel a pit of dread building in your stomach.

"Thirdly, you failed to follow the orders of a Glennwood University security guard. For an ROTC army cadet, I would hope you understood the threat posed by insubordination. Future offenses will require further meetings with Disciplinary Affairs."

Shocked, you say. "I told Jane on the way here, that Larry was being shifty. All I did was stand there as he came up and threatened me."

Natalia's eyes narrow. "Your fourth offense, Ms. Bellman, should not come as a surprise to you. You were recorded threatening the life of Larry Thompson, saying, and I quote," She clicks something with her mouse. All around you, the sound of your voice fills the room.

"There'd be a shallow grave waiting for him by sunrise."

Your breath hitches in the back of your throat. She was recording you?

"Threatening the life of a University staff member," Natalia continues without a change in tone. "Is grounds for immediate expulsion, Ms. Bellman."

She falls silent, looking directly at you. Waves of shock and disbelief ricochet in your mind.

Expulsion? You haven't been on campus more than 2 hours. You don't have anywhere to go, you flew here, and neither you or your family have the money to pay for another ticket. How would you get home? You have maybe $50 to your name, all your food was going to be paid through scholarships, and you were maybe going to find a part time job when you settled in, and, and...

Oh god you're getting expelled.

Oh fuck, your dad is going to be so fucking disappointed.

"Ms. Bellman," Natalia's voice cuts through your panicked thoughts. "If you have a proposal, I am willing to hear you out. The charges are severe, but due to your status as a Freshman," You somehow know that word is capitalized. "And the fact that these are first time offenses, well."

You think you see...

Is that a hint of a smile?

"Tell me why I shouldn't expel you right here and now. Or," She raises a finger. "To be more precise, what are you willing to do in order to not be expelled?"

Mouth drops open in shock.

Natalia's eyes glimmer.

> Why shouldn't you be expelled?
> Scream internally
> Stand to attention. Looking proper will buy some time
> Scream internally part two: the screaming
> "Ma'am, I have nothing to my name, and no way of getting home. I beg your understanding about the stressful nature of my arrival and my frustration with being accosted for an attack I didn't commit."
> "Could I make amends by finding Larry's assailant for you?"
Votes extended until tomorrow. I'll be aroundish to answer any questions, elaborate if need be, etc.
I feel like you opened up too soon with a major Write-In for the quest.

>"I will find Larry's assailant."
>> Why shouldn't you be expelled?
Becuase unflappable. And backbone, and half-thinking this is a test of character. It's not the problem, it's how she responds.


'... why shouldn't I sue you? You're giving me all this shit, and I'm pretty sure there has to be acknowledged consent to all this stuff. Pretty sure I didn't acknowledge any of this stuff yet.

Now, if you care to have a proper introduction instead of 'haze and scare the freshmen' so I know what exactly is expected of me instead of trying to find landmines before I step on them, I think that'd be a much better start.

Also, you're condoning the actions of one of your staff, the guard who is harassing and pretty sure with even just a little bit of digging we'll find some sort of criminal record or more than a few people willing to attest to his shitty character. Wouldn't that be a blemish against your record?'
>Stand to attention. Looking proper will buy some time

"Ma'am, if I can just start by saying that this day has been an absolute mess. My campus appointed guide was not present at the time of my arrival and the information handed out prior to my arrival on campus did not cover any of these circumstances. Now, I realize that ignorance of the law is no excuse but there must be a reasonable expectation of information being provided prior to arrival. I will be installing the Campus app immediately following our meeting here and I recognize that the comment made was out of line (OOC: that was a stupid write in anyways), made in a time of frustration and without though towards the full ramifications of what I was implying. I shall make sure to conduct myself with proper military bearing at all times from here forward.

Now if I can make my own statement (describe the events of the morning, leave nothing out, emphasize the lack of identification of Larry, his change in demeanor when the second security guard showed up, and the improper use of escalation of force on his part). In light of these events I hope that they can shed light onto my reactions. I apologize for having stepped out of line and will make amends in any way possible. This is my last chance and I have no way to go home, I must succeed here, I have no other choice."
>(OOC: that was a stupid write in anyways)

Agreed, and I'm the one who wrote it. I was really not expecting that to get picked up ad verbatim.

More musing. Which is worth more to Natalia; the one asshole guard who can easily be replaced, or another tuition and avoiding a headline like 'campus guard attempts to molest a student and school staff are totally okay with this.' As much as this campus looooves it's privacy, that kind of ... looking into wouldn't go over very well.

True, might not be a bad angle to push if she doesn't bite on the explanation we've provided and I also have to say that the recording was a shock to me as well, gonna need to shadowrun harder than expected
Supporting that one. Counter-aggression to regain posture. See how she reacts, too.

Things ain't right around here.
I see a shift to trying to regain some footing in the coversation. Would you like me to synthesize everything, including offering to hunt down Larry's assailant?

If so, roughly what order would you like to bring things up?

Synthesize all you like, I would say put the statements designed to put her on the back foot first, that way the rest has more impact
I'll retract this in favor of the more assertive option.
Noted. After work I'll be able to update!
>3rd in the state
It must be a big state, because that's not very impressive otherwise.
Good eyes. I wonder what else you notice?
Giant Trap: The Quest. Shadowrun mode go!
Writing is happening! Slowly, in between people walking into work and saying hi. Look for an update sometime relatively seen!
Truly carrying the spirit of Vox.
File: Spoiler Image (72 KB, 500x375)
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You don't say...
This update's made special for you
Why shouldn't you get expelled? What kind of question is that?

The glint in Natalia's eyes belies her composed and serious expression.

The only time you ever got in trouble at school was in the 3rd grade. The classroom next to yours had a class pet, a turtle named Mr. Shuffles. Almost every day you saw the students poking sticks at Mr. Shuffles when the professor wasn't looking. You remember at first being confused, how could the students be so mean to the turtle? He was super cute. After about a month they got bored of laughing at him, only paying attention to refill his food and water.

Then one day, you were being lined up outside the classroom to go to the library. As you stood you watched one of the girls start poking at Mr. Shuffles again with a stick. You could see him trying to hide in his shell, but she would get the stick underneath it to jab at his face. She looked focused, but you could see her eyes look on with excitement.

Right as your teacher was telling you to begin walking, the girl paused. She looked behind her to see if her teacher was watching (as usual, she was paying no attention). The last thing you saw was her reaching in and flipping Mr. Shuffles on his back.

The rest of the day when you walked by that classroom, you saw Mr. Shuffles either pulled back into his shell or moving his legs, trying to get a foothold. Even in the brief glimpses you knew he wouldn't be able to turn over by himself.

You went home that day and cried.

The next morning, what you saw made you the angriest you had ever been up to that point.

The girl who flipped Mr. Shuffles over and a bunch of boys were flicking the edge of his shell, rocking him back and forth. You saw the turtle almost right himself, but the girl smiled a bone-chilling smile and pushed him again. Mr. Shuffles was so scared, you remember thinking.

You couldn't let them be mean to him anymore.

At the end of school that day, when you thought no one was looking, you snuck into the classroom and carefully put Mr. Shuffles in your backpack. When you got home you placed him in a shoebox and gave him lettuce to eat. You told your Dad everything that happened, and the next day when you were called to the Principal's office (they saw you taking the turtle on a camera) and they called your dad, he came to the school and explained to them what you told him the night before. You almost cried when they said you would be suspended for three days. You did cry after they asked for Mr. Shuffles to be returned.

When Dad brought you home, he told you he was going to find a turtle that looked like Mr. Shuffles in the nearby pond, and he'd let you keep Mr. Shuffles at home. He was your first pet, and he's still at home living happily.

You feel yourself bristle. Natalia's eyes remind you of the look the girl.

She's taking pleasure in your discomfort, in your fear, in the weight of the threat she has laid before you.

> [Cont.]
Expulsion? You ball your hands into fists.

Getting sent back home to see your Dad's confused face? Your back straightens as you tense, pulling yourself to your full height.

Fuck this woman and her attempts to bully you. You're going to be an Army Officer, dammit. Counter Intelligence, or at least that's your goal.

And she is giving you shit for walking onto campus for the first time? You set your jaw and look her directly in the eyes. The small hint of a smile drops from her face.

"I would like to apologize, Mrs. Bookchild," You begin. "I certainly didn't mean to commit so many infraction in my first," You pull your phone from your pocket to check the time. "Two hours on this campus. I respect that being ignorant of what is expected of me doesn't exempt me from punishment. I acknowledge that I what I said in frustration and without recognizing the full ramifications of what I was implying was wrong, and will freely try and make amends."

Natalia intertwines her fingers and rests her forearms on the desk. It might simply be the shifting of light, but you think you see the hint of a smile grow a fraction of an inch larger. The knot in your stomach tightens. You can't help but hate this woman.

"That is good to hear, Ms. Bellman, now, to discuss-"

"However," You cut in. "Everything you are accusing me of, I'm pretty sure expressed consent is required. And I have not acknowledged consent, yet."

Natalia's eyes no longer glimmer, and that hint of a smile you thought you saw is now gone. "A spirited attempt. Unfortunately, you have acknowledged consent, Ms. Bellman, so your arguement is not valid. Now, if you would stop being a chi-"

"Mrs. Bookchild, I know what I said." You interrupt her again. "I have not expressed consent."

Her eyes narrow into a glare. "As I just said. You have acknowledged consent. A contract is far more legally binding than mere spoken consent, and we have records indicating it."

"What contract?" Your eyebrow shoots up in surprise. "You certainly don't mean the documents the university sent me?"

That gleam returns to her eyes. "That is exactly what I'm referring to, Ms. Bellman. I have the files here on record."

> [Cont.]
You shake your head. "There was nothing in those that said anything about what you've told me."

"Unfortunately, people your age tend to fail to read what they sign." The hint of a smile is back. "And I regret to inform you that the contracts you signed are as legally binding as any other."

You shake your head again, with more force. "No, I know what those papers said. I took an Intro to Law class when I was applying for colleges. One of our assignments was to take what you sent me and write a paper on what it was really saying. I have that project in my flashdrive in my bag right now, and I have copies of every paper I signed."

Natalia blinks.

"And nothing, Mrs. Bookchild, in those documents said I was acknowledging consent for any of this."

You stand there, glaring at each other in silence. Your face is hot, and despite the controlled tone of voice you had been speaking in, you were pissed. You're pretty sure she's trying to manipulate you. You were almost willing to give in and do anything to not get in trouble. Fuck, you're almost more disgusted with yourself than you are with Natalia.


"Now, if you care to have a proper introduction instead of 'haze and scare the freshmen', I would like to know what is expected of me instead of trying to find landmines before I step on them, I think that'd be a much better start."

"Unfortunately," Natalia's voice has a harsh edge to it. "You have already provided me an exceptionally poor introduction to your character. This preposterous theory you are crafting is all beside the point, Ms. Bellman." Natalia leans forward slightly. "You have already been warned concerning your infractions. You appear to be attempting to misdirect from the issue at hand and absolve yourself of responsibility. Any leniency I may have been willing to extend towards you for a first-time offense is quickly slipping away. We do not tolerate death threats against our staff."

Natalia lays her hands flat on the desk, maintaining eye contact.

She doesn't appear willing to budge.

> What do?
> Be sure to talk about what you want to emphasize
> [] Continue pressing the issue
> [] Back down, try to come at this from a different angle
> [] Back down, and search for a compromise
> [] Write-in
>[] Continue pressing the issue
> [] Write-in
"I said that he would find himself where he would because I have seen such things happen. I am not from the safest of places, and I have seen terrible people do terrible things. That is why I came here, to try and rise above it. You, and your staff, violate the laws yourself, and then bring it against me when the very structure you have established has failed.
When I have proof that what you say is false, you turn this from an argument of law and authority into an Ad Hominem attack on me. You call my presentation of fact a preposterous theory, despite having items written BY YOUR ESTABLISHMENT saying otherwise."
>[] Back down, try to come at this from a different angle

"And I have already acknowledged that statement was out of line and made in the heat of the moment, and that I am willing to make amends for the infraction. What you seem to be missing here is that I do not tolerate threats made against myself when I have done nothing wrong, nor the predatory manner in which he singled me out and attempted to assert dominance. A situation only avoided when another security professional, which he obviously has unprofessional advances towards and which given your propensity towards recording everything should already have been reprimanded for.

I was reacting to an unprovoked threat of assault and nothing that I have done in that light has been grounds for expulsion. You have every right to push all you want but I am in the right and I will not move from my position here, I will not back down and now you are seeing why I am here on an ROTC scholarship."
Welp. Stupid Write In Verbatim puts us in a weak spot, but that makes it more important to get through this.

She pushed, we shoved, and, hrm.

Regardless of how this goes; an audience with the principal should be in order. Not gonna let this sole crazy bitch be the only voice of authority.

But as for Natalia herself? Moving on.

> [] Write-in
'so it's gonna be like that? I'm afraid you and I are unable to come to an agreement. I'm leaving this room, if you'd like we can reschedule for tomorrow.'
And then seek out a) the media b) legal counsel and c) the principal in varying orders.
I won't be able to synthesize all these votes, as some are mutually exclusive. Just so you know.

Twitter is @ObserverQM, I'll post there when the next thread will be (and maybe the updates if I keep this pace up). We're on page 8, so I'm archiving now.

So feel free to take the rest of the thread to debate and try to agree on a singleish option. I believe in your abilities.

I'm around for questions, feedback, etc. After we're done with Natalia, it'll be time for the actual college stuff to begin! Thanks for sticking around and voting after my distantly spread updates! It means a lot.
I'll concede to this
Would you like me to bring these two together in some way?
On more musing, I think... maybe backing up might be better. Changing vote.

>[] Back down, try to come at this from a different angle
'if you want a fight, i'm happy to oblige, but now that we've both shown our teeth, how about we back up and come at this with a fresh start and not actually start a war' sort of deal.

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