ch2-4

Peter|GM: THE BASE CAMP, AT THE ARCOLITH "FILIOS" .
Peter|GM: There's a strong, rising wind this morning, rippling through the tents. The seabirds aren't taking flight.
Peter|GM: On the eastern horizon, the sky is mottled with coming cloud.
Peter|GM: The fiend Virindigris sits out on a stone by the shore, watching it.
Elbereth seems to be making a passable breakfast for people based on what was foraged last night. If she's bothered by the company of a fiend now she isn't showing it.
Hayreddin enters the camp, as though appearing from some liminal space. He does not need to shield his eyes from the concealed sun.
Elbereth: "I admit I am unsure if we should continue to delve into Site B. I am still hoping for another treasure of significance like the seed. Our ship is gone and the empire with the arcoliths prize."
Peter|GM: The fiend is a strange figure - eyes doey, legs furred and bent backwards like a deer, matching her antlers. Her body is made of woven root grown over strange stone statue, long fingers and rounded cheeks soft. The wood of her bends in towards a hollow at her heart that glows with an inner light.
Hayreddin brushes back a lock of hair from his forehead, pressing it to his scalp.
Hayreddin: "As we have been chasing hope within the depths throughout these days, so then today shall be as any other."
Elbereth nods. "With a method to warp back to the mainland where the others are, I do think it important that no stone is left unturned before we depart from this island."
Lobelia steps out from her tent, armor fastened, and takes a seat at the table. "I'd still like to press onward and find that beast. Take it out, and loot its lair. We have a score to settle. After that… I suppose it'd be contingent on having a better plan."
Elbereth: "Is the Empires interest in the seeds the information you were hoping to glean coming out here, Master Hayreddin?"
Elbereth smiles. "If that's your wish, Lady Wintervine. We can simply enter the way we fought it the first time."
Hayreddin: "The wrecked ship ruse, inspected closely enough, will show its true color. Absconding early here is abandoning territory in the overall sense of a conflict."
Hayreddin rubs his chin. "In a way, I suppose it is."
Hayreddin: "But also, I have heard… whispers, about something in site A?"
Elbereth nods. "The treasure that Lady Mcgunnery took and gave to the Empire, leaving us stranded on the island."
Elbereth: "Also, a spirit was sighted. Undine, I believe it was called."
Peter|GM: (The name is unfamiliar to you.)
Hayreddin: "Undine, hmm? I've not heard of such a spirit."
Elbereth: "None among us had, so I cannot fault you for ignorance. Echo Thirty-Six is far more versed in such things and seemed equally at a loss."
Elbereth: "I am ready to depart when you are, Lady Wintervine."
Hayreddin: "What matter of beast do we hunt?" he asks, before taking a few larger-than-expected bites from the prepared breakfast.
Elbereth: "A Tree Wyrm of sorts, quite the fearsome beast. Lady Wintervine and I lost to it once before."
Elbereth: "It is the creature responsible for the murky waters of Site B that calcify that which it touches."
Lobelia nods, gathers up the now-empty breakfast plates, then hooks her axe on her belt. "Let's be on our way, then. It's the creature that's releasing that awful petrifying toxin in the water." She holds up a finger in correction. "Almost lost."
Elbereth: "Ooze seeps from its every orifice."
Elbereth smiles. "A retreat is better than a defeat, I admit."
Hayreddin grins. "A valuable experience had and learned from. At least we will be prepared for the final bout!"
Elbereth makes her way into Site B again, this time heading towards the grating entrance. "I do apologize for the method of entry. Much of the Site has collapsed from Lady Mcgunnery's bomb."
Elbereth: "So this is the only way we know how to retrace our steps."
Peter|GM: The air is stale inside the coral garden of Site B.
Peter|GM: Some of its growths have begun to bleach,
Peter|GM: And there is a pack of three coralites feeding on a fourth, just by one of the walkways.
Hayreddin: "So much has changed in the short duration of our visit. A parable could be set by it."
Elbereth eyes the coralites. "These creatures were sleeping on the second night, so we simply walked past them."
Lobelia checks her pack and confirms there are no dolls inside. "Hmm… Had to make sure. Nothing in my pack that can't get drenched."
Peter|GM: It's important to check your bags before that climb!
Hayreddin: "Aggressive beasts?"
Elbereth: "Pica-Y-Mata and I dealt with them rather swiftly. Though they became more dangerous and glowed red when exposed to mist, similar to how the Serpent powered up."
Elbereth: "Coralites were present in much of the garden."
Peter|GM: And there, in the northwest corner - a little pond, fed by a waterfall flowing from an open grate.
Elbereth: "I cannot stress how sorry I am though that you cannot return to Ul'Sala immediately due to us losing our boat. I hope that we will be able to find something else of interest inside the Arcolith to make the wait worthwhile."
Hayreddin: "Long is the journey to this point, a thousand miles by cart- what is another few feet by land?" He smiles. "No apologies needed. The empires close presence is going to make that difficult enough."
Elbereth makes sure she has a rope before levitating herself to the top of the waterfall once more with her grimoire. "Rossa Aum." [Thaumaturgy]
Elbereth rolled 6d6 and got 3, 5, 5, 2, 4, 5 ( Total: 24 )
Elbereth then tosses it down to the others. "The crawl is wet and cramped."
Peter|GM: The pattern sets, and she rises.
Lobelia gives Hayreddin a sympathetic pat on the shoulder- "Trust us, we're not thrilled about this passage either." -and climbs up the rope.
Hayreddin: "Hah! If I returned from a ruin clean under my fingernails, I would feel cheated." He follows up shortly after.
Peter|GM: It comes out at the watery bottom of a tall room - a ladder offers passage upwards to a walkway.
Peter|GM: The huge fluid-filled glass canisters that fill this room have turned cloudy, murky.
Elbereth: "This beasts weak points are its two eyes. It is very dangerous and thrashes about, but should you damage them first he will not strike true. But if you do not strike the beast, it will never fall." ((His attacks go from 90 -> 60 -> 30% CoS))
Elbereth takes note of the differences in the room before climbing the ladder.
Peter|GM: And then, through the mushroom-filled drum-like room, and to the room with the great tree -
Peter|GM: The wyrm's lair is to the north. The eastern route remains unexplored.
Elbereth continues north, pulling out the [Fire Orb] to light the darkness.
Lobelia: "Going by my map, it's not long to get to its lair from here. Follow me- you'll know when we get there when we're at an especially dark room. There was a pathway we didn't go down… Perhaps on the way back, though."
Hayreddin: "Now that we're on the hunt, best to follow through, yes."
Elbereth: "There's three paths we have let to explore asides from the room. East of the tree, east of the ladder and the lower level of the Great Tree."
Peter|GM: Past the room with the great tree - a circular room, in which a massive, charred tree-trunk rises through a hole in the middle - is a dark room, sloped with flowing water coming down a ramp.
Peter|GM: In the darkness waits the wyrm - a coiled, dark-scaled beast, with massive fangs, its scaly hide sloughing horrid black murk. Each side is dotted with a half-dozen milky eyes, unlike in size.
Elbereth: "I admit I am surprised it made it back here after the walkway collapsed."
Peter|GM: Its eyes swivel and focus as its sees the light approach.
Peter|GM: It's ready to pounce.
Hayreddin: "Hopefully no better for the journey!" He stretches out his shoulders, and there's a gleam in his hand. (It's a dagger.)
Peter|GM: Hayreddin's ready too.
Peter|GM: IT'S A FIGHT!
Peter|GM: Lobelia gains Drive.
Peter|GM: Round One - Showtime!
Peter|GM: Hayreddin!
Hayreddin: "I shall strike first!" With a flash, the dagger glints the light down the passage, and he charges into action- flail across the snout, dagger to the left set of eyes, a staff-thwack to the right! [OD - Open Arsenal]
Hayreddin rolled 3d100 and got 91, 42, 57 ( Total: 190 ) for 80 cos, flail to Wyrm, dagger to blind eye A, staff to blind eye b
Hayreddin -2 LP to make the flail hit
Peter|GM: Three hits!
Peter|GM: The eyes wince shut!
Hayreddin rolled 1d6+9 and got 6 ( Total: 15 ) for flail damage
Hayreddin then slides a pistol out from his sleeve and fires at the beast's lower body! [Drag]
Hayreddin rolled 1d100 and got 82 ( Total: 82 ) for 90
Hayreddin rolled 1d6+6 and got 1 ( Total: 7 ) for ACC PROC, also Slow 1 to the Tree Wyrm
Peter|GM: It's slowed!
Hayreddin shakes his arms before the shot though, and there's a boom of thunder. [Q, Lightning in a Bottle]
Peter|GM: The eyes are wincing shut! [Defending!]
Elbereth: "It would seem the eyes do next to nothing should they be hit first. This is going to be much easier, Lady Wintervine."
[OOC] Peter|GM: wait what's dagger and staff damage
[OOC] Elbereth: If the eyes get KO'd they start to do really annoying dazed actions so this is relevent
[OOC] Hayreddin: OH uh 15-3, so 12
Peter|GM: Elbereth!
Elbereth chants as the ground crackles beneath the Tree Wyrm. An [Eruption] bursts from under its feet pushing it forward.
Elbereth rolled 1d100 and got 62 ( Total: 62 ) for burst check
Elbereth rolled 2d8+17 and got 5, 1 ( Total: 23.0 ) for Using C-Pin for Long K-Shatter
[OOC] Elbereth: Q - Tiger Bracelet
Peter|GM: Weakness damage in that?
[OOC] Elbereth: Fire element so Land Ripper enters Witch Mode
[OOC] Elbereth: Yes.
Peter|GM: Hits the weakness for 23! It's Shattered!
Peter|GM: The wyrm lunges forward, powering down the ramp, twisting around to snap blindly at Hayreddin! [Cursed Thrash]
Peter|GM rolled 3d100 and got 24, 63, 80 ( Total: 167 ) for C30
Peter|GM rolled 2d10+10 and got 9, 3 ( Total: 22.0 )
Peter|GM: Biting into him for 22 physical damage!
Hayreddin deftly dodges! [-1 LP]
Peter|GM: Lobelia!
Lobelia pulls out a sickly-looking purple glass vial and presses her axe blade against its sealing wax, embedding the suspicious vial on her axe blade. "Old friend, I've prepared a present for you!" Lobelia leaps forward, swinging her axe at the head, smashing the vial between steel and skull! [Synth Venom]
Lobelia rolled d100 and got 6 ( Total: 6 ) for 90/10
[OOC] Lobelia: opting not to rapid fire- Long Toxin 1, tho
Peter|GM: It's a critical hit! The Wyrm's poisoned!
Lobelia rolled 2d10+10 and got 2, 6 ( Total: 18 )
Peter|GM: Boosted by Shatter to 21, I think!
Peter|GM: Round Two - Showtime!
Peter|GM: The eyes twist and focus on Hayreddin and Elbereth, and they experience a sudden, nauseating pain, so fierce it makes the eyes water -
Peter|GM rolled 2d100 and got 54, 72 ( Total: 126 ) for 100/25
Peter|GM rolled 1d8+18 and got 3 ( Total: 21.0 )
Also rolled 1d8+18 and got 4 [Total: 22.0 (Low), Avg: 4.00]
Total: 43.0, Avg: 3.50
Peter|GM: Inflicting 21 and 22 Water damage to each of them. Elbereth's dizzy… [C-Water: Short Shock II!]
Peter|GM: Hayreddin!
Hayreddin darts forward and drives his dagger toward the body of the wyrm! [Lead]
Hayreddin rolled 1d100 and got 5 ( Total: 5 ) for 80/20
Peter|GM: It's a critical strike!
Hayreddin rolled 2d6+13 and got 5, 5 ( Total: 23 ) for added crit and shatter
Hayreddin: "Madam Elbereth! There!" There's a glint where he struck! [Elbereth gains Short Lucky I]
Peter|GM: It rips through scales, and the wyrm twists and lifts, trying to crush the darting Hayreddin-
Peter|GM: But yes - there is that glint!
Peter|GM: Elbereth!
Elbereth nods before powering up the Fire Orb, a raging [Inferno] engulfing the Tree Wyrm in its entirety. [Inferno - Witch Mode | Sixth Sense | Using a charge]
Elbereth rolled 3d100 and got 79, 99, 22 ( Total: 200 ) for 85
Peter|GM: Hits the weakness on the tree wyrm!
Peter|GM: The eyes wince shut!
Elbereth rolled 1d8+27 and got 5 ( Total: 32.0 ) for Fire damage to Wyrm. -12 for eyes
[OOC] Elbereth: +5 sixth sense, +7 weakness
Peter|GM: 32 20 20!
Peter|GM: The Tree Wyrm howls in pain! [Q - Acclimatize - Eyes will be protected from fire next turn]
Peter|GM: And lunges out at Lobelia! [Cursed Thrash]
Peter|GM rolled 3d100 and got 52, 100, 62 ( Total: 214 ) for C30
Peter|GM: But it can't catch her!
Peter|GM: Lobelia!
Lobelia stays up close to the wyrm, firing a blast of shotgun fire at the wyrm's ear, draining its concentration with lead and sound! [Eliminate, C-Fire (Long Exhaust II)]
Lobelia rolled d100 and got 65 ( Total: 65 ) for 80/10
Lobelia rolled d8+11 and got 5 ( Total: 16 ) for 8+3 from k shatter
Peter|GM: 16! It's Exhausted!
[OOC] Lobelia: I'll take an MP refund from that 1 intuition
Peter|GM: Round Three - Showtime!
Peter|GM: The eyes are absorbing fiery manna! (Short Fire Absorb)
Peter|GM: The eyes call down terrible curses on Lobelia and Elberth, as well as painful headaches!
Peter|GM rolled 4d100 and got 19, 19, 47, 48 ( Total: 133 ) for 100/25 curses then stares
Peter|GM rolled d8+18 and got 8 ( Total: 26.0 )
Peter|GM rolled d8+18 and got 6 ( Total: 24.0 )
Peter|GM: Inflicting 26 and 24 Water damage to them, as well as Short Shock II to Elbereth once more!
Peter|GM: Oh, and Long Curse I.
Peter|GM: Hayreddin!
Hayreddin slices at the belly of the beast once more! [Lead]
Hayreddin rolled 1d100 and got 62 ( Total: 62 ) for 80/20
Hayreddin rolled 1d6+9 and got 4 ( Total: 13 )
[Short Lucky I Elbereth]
[OOC] Hayreddin: NO WAIT
[OOC] Hayreddin: back up the truck.
[OOC] Hayreddin: let's… let's Shoot it and Slow 1 it
[OOC] Hayreddin: same damage
[OOC] Peter|GM: [OK]!
[OOC] Hayreddin: elbereth you don't have lucky.
[OOC] Elbereth: OK
Peter|GM: Elbereth!
Elbereth takes a step back from the blow. With a grimace the air around her begins to shift as she fans her grimoire and its accumulated power converts into energy. [Special Delivery - OD | Short Focus II, +32 MP, Seal all spells but Inferno. M-Recovery+4 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mkMDmaghbkA ]
Elbereth then fires a [Bolt] at the Tree Wyrm. [Using C-Pin!]
Elbereth rolled 1d100 and got 89 ( Total: 89 )
[OOC] Elbereth: -2 LP eating the HP damage
Peter|GM: Strikes!
Elbereth rolled 1d10+14 and got 6 ( Total: 20.0 ) for -6 drive air damage
Peter|GM: It's suppressed!
Peter|GM: The air is crackling.
Peter|GM: Lobelia!
Lobelia shakes her offhand, rustling the amber beads around her wrist, setting them to glowing gently… [Q- Amber Bead, heal 6 HP] …then grips her axe in both hands, raises it, and brings it down on the wyrm's skull! [Attack]
Lobelia rolled d100 and got 36 ( Total: 36 ) for 90/10
Peter|GM: It's a hit!
Lobelia rolled d10+13 and got 4 ( Total: 17 ) for 10+3 (shatter)
Peter|GM: The Tree Wyrm snarls, seeping and wounded and bleeding, and savagely snaps and bites at Lobelia, eyes staring her down! [Cursed Thrash]
Peter|GM rolled 3d100 and got 61, 98, 8 ( Total: 167 ) for C90/60
Peter|GM: Hitting, missing, and critically striking her!
Peter|GM rolled 2d10+10 and got 5, 8 ( Total: 23.0 )
Also rolled 3d10+14 and got 2, 3, 8 [Total: 27.0 (Low), Avg: 4.33]
Total: 50.0, Avg: 5.20
Peter|GM: For 23 and 27 physical damage!
[OOC] Lobelia: 6 less from armor, at least
Peter|GM: Round Four - Showtime!
Peter|GM: The eyes stare at Elbereth and Lobelia, and the pain repeats!
Peter|GM rolled 2d100 and got 68, 25 ( Total: 93 )
Peter|GM rolled 1d8+18 and got 1 ( Total: 19.0 )
Peter|GM rolled 1d8+18 and got 7 ( Total: 25.0 )
Peter|GM: For 19 and 25 Water damage respectively!
Peter|GM: Hayreddin!
Elbereth seems to have taken a bit more than she can chew. She stumbles to the ground and hits a knee. She's at least still holding the [Fire Orb] so the room isn't dark. [Dazed]
Hayreddin quickdraws his pistol and puts it between the eyes of the Tree Wyrm! (That means he has lots of potential targets, he just has to hit the general face region more or less.) [Attack]
Hayreddin rolled 1d100 and got 12 ( Total: 12 ) for 90
Hayreddin rolled 1d6+9 and got 1 ( Total: 10 ) for added kuhshatter
Peter|GM: The shot rings out -
Peter|GM: And the wyrm is slain!
Peter|GM: Its eyes widen, and even in the milkiness there is a shrinking to them -
Peter|GM: A realization and a horrible gurgling.
Peter|GM: Black, toxic muck flows from within the beasts throat as it falls over, exposing its belly, tongue lolling sickly out.
Peter|GM: THE COAST IS CLEAR. All threats have been eliminated and the Arcolith beckons. Got +10 EXP.
Hayreddin turns about to tend to the party first. "Lobelia, Elbereth!"
Lobelia grunts, propping herself up a bit on her weapon. After taking a moment to steady herself from the nausea, she yanks loose a fang that (already loosened by a few axe blows) got stuck on her vambrace. "Well, you hardly look worse for wear." She smiles.
Elbereth chuckles softly before painfully getting to her feet. "My. That was just as exciting as the first time we fought it."
Elbereth: "Let's search the perimeter now that the beast has fallen."
Hayreddin: "Do you not need a moment? If another beast should surge from the depths, you are in no condition to withstand it."
Elbereth shakes her head. "You will find that I am quite capable even when cornered, Master Hayreddin." [+20 HP from the LP though]
Hayreddin continues to judge her with a critical eye, but then produces his staff, wordlessly offering it.
Lobelia takes a very deep breath… then claps her hands together and releases it. A bit of the color returns to her face. "That'll be enough rest for me. Let's see what we've got in this place." [+45 HP <- LP convert]
Elbereth takes the staff before bowing her head. "You have my thanks."
Hayreddin nods before taking point. "Now! To reap the spoils."
Peter|GM: The beast's carcass calcifies quickly, its own toxins turning its flesh to a chalky, murky black.
Peter|GM: Exploring by orb-light, a passage leads west along a waterway - aqueduct-like - lit from above by sunlight streaming in through glass panels in its ceiling.
Lobelia catches the creature suffering from its own ailment. "That's some bloody good justice right there."
Hayreddin shields his eyes periodically from the light, keeping an eye on nooks and shadowy crannies.
Elbereth gives Lobelia a smile before glancing at Hayreddin. "Are all the guards of Ul'Sala as versed in weapons as you, Master Hayreddin?"
Peter|GM: Partway along the passage, there's what looks like a small rest-stop: two murk-calcified corpses are stopped on a bench. Bad wounds are visible on one's body - it looks like one was trying to treat the other. There's a locker on the wall opposite the bench, and a closed door on the north side of the passage.
Peter|GM: It continues further west past it, towards the water source.
Elbereth pops open the locker. She at least is not disturbing the dead.
Hayreddin: "Not as many. Many of the local militia are given training in a spear-like weapon, as well as ranged training."
Elbereth: "I have to wonder why they chose to run further into the Arcolith when retreating from the Wyrm rather than away."
Elbereth: "Unless they encountered it from this side…?"
Lobelia: "If they didn't know about the passage, they likely came from the opposite end. To them, it could've been a retreat." Lobelia peers closely at the statues.
Hayreddin: "Those of the West Crescent are not required to possess martial ability, but as it is a title of recognitition and valor, less physical members oft have talents of other natures."
Peter|GM: A few clothing items of strange construction - some pairs of boots, a rain-poncho, folded - and a zippered pouch that seems to contain coinage and some keys.
Elbereth: "The fact that your lord entrusted you with such an outlandish task must say much for your esteem, though."
Peter|GM: Oh, and an arcotech pistol.
Elbereth keeps the keys on her, but ends up putting everything else away with Lobelia. The coinage is split evenly among the three. ((How much?))
Hayreddin smiles slightly before it fades just as quick as it appeared. "It does. Which is why, even after learning of the nature and contents of the Arcolith…
Hayreddin: "To simply return straightaway without swiping at the threat I have also been investigating would not settle well with my soul."
Peter|GM: 200G, in high-value coinage.
Elbereth takes [+66 gp] and gives [+67] to the other two. "A small step towards your repayment as per the contract."
Hayreddin gathers it!
Elbereth: "When someone has time they can examine that pistol in more detail. It may be of use to one of us."
Elbereth glances at the bodies one more time before heading to the northern door.
Peter|GM: They're calcified beyond recognition. It's difficult to say what race they might be, though, at the very least, they aren't Hundred.
Peter|GM: The northern door is closed off with a turnwheel. Give it a spin.
Elbereth: "So you intend to pursue the Empire once we claw our way back to Leviathan?" She attempts to turn the turnwheel before glancing at Lobelia.
Hayreddin: "Fate has conspired to make it so."
Hayreddin: "Don't worry- I understand that isn't part of the contract."
Lobelia slips the pistol into a slot on her belt, puts the key away in a pocket, and hides the coins in her purse. "It's been a few weeks since the last time I've gotten into any trouble with the Empire. If you invest in the notion that an overdue lucky streak tends to invite disaster, I imagine you'll have ample opportunity to deal some damage." Lobelia steps forward to operate that wheel and get that door open.
Peter|GM: It spins open, opening out onto the exterior of the Site -
Peter|GM: an aqueduct connecting Site A and Site B, held up by pillars. A railing runs along it from the outside, though there's no place to stand.
Elbereth: "A breath of fresh air is welcome, at least after the crawl here and the toxins nearby."
Lobelia: "Ah, good. She missed one. Well… Before we head onward, shall we finish examining that passage we walked past on the way here?"
Elbereth: "I believe we should continue forward until we hit a dead end to make better use of our time."
Hayreddin nods. "Agreed."
Elbereth: "There are many paths we could have taken to reach here. Should we check them all we won't be returning here any time soon, Lady Wintervine."
Peter|GM: Continuing forward: The aqueduct is fed from a vast, shimmering pool of water in a massive, dark room. Sunlight streams in from stained glass windows far far above.
Peter|GM: There are scars in the stone here - the entrance to the aqueduct passage was once covered by a grate and door, and both of those have been ripped away long ago.
Lobelia: "Lead on, then." She shrugs, adding, "Though, didn't Elizabeth have some sort of foreknowledge? Like she'd know when Site A was cleaned of treasure."
Elbereth: "As for the contract, Master Hayreddin. Should the groups interests align for the immediate future I am afraid I will be coming along for the ride regardless of where it may take me. Seeing you all home back to Leviathan is of course my top priority, but it was our expedition that set you all on this path. I could not live with myself should something happen because of it."
Peter|GM: Dark shapes and strange machines can be seen out in the darkness above the water, but it is difficult to see how to reach them.
Peter|GM: To the north, in an alcove: A flickering, faint blue light.
Hayreddin: "However you wish to join the fight, Madam."
Elbereth continues forward. "It is not treasure I am hoping to find over here, Lady Wintervine."
Elbereth: "But rather knowledge. Of the seed, or perhaps the spirit. Something to grant more insight towards what the Empire plans to do in the future."
Elbereth: "Lady Mcgunnery was focused on her prize to save Leviathan and she would not be able to tarry long after obtaining it lest the crew return with her."
Peter|GM: You're at the bottom of a gigantic, dark room which is mostly occupied by a pool of water. There's strange things far above you, but for now, passage is possible along the edge of that pool.
Elbereth thankfully still has the [Fire Orb] she uses it to light the way.
Peter|GM: There's - there's someone there, in the alcove. He's luminescent, glowing blue, his pupils pin-prick thin, his clothes rags. He is gaunt to starving, and he clutches a spear forward as the party approach.
Peter|GM: The alcove is occupied by a machine in part, but also by gathered, scavenged cloth and opened discarded tins - it's a nest.
Peter|GM: Whatever food he's had has long been eaten.
Hayreddin tilts his head, and then holds up a hand. "Hail, stranger."
Peter|GM: The man is driftin. He is also, on closer inspection, transparent.
Peter|GM: "Hail! We…" He lowers his spear.
Peter|GM: He smiles.
Peter|GM: "We're both people. Ha-ha."
Peter|GM: "Two - three of you? That's an elf?"
Hayreddin nods. "No machines or wyrms, they've mostly been smashed!"
Peter|GM: "Someone killed the hand, too…"
Elbereth: "A living creature that is not a lizardfolk nor If-Ys? Fascinating." She pauses before bowing to the Driftin. "My apologies for my appearance, we've had a rough passage to reach here."
Peter|GM: The wall, here, is covered in tally-marks.
Peter|GM: He looks down at his hand. "I am not sure if I am alive."
Peter|GM: "But,"
Peter|GM: "I've had a rough passage too."
Lobelia warily tilts her head at the person… But smiles. "As long as you've the mind not to cause trouble for us, we'll treat you the same. Are you alright? You're looking, er, pale. To put it lightly."
Hayreddin: "I am Hayreddin, of the West Crescent. Who might you be?"
Peter|GM: "Sumerees, of Fipala."
Peter|GM: (The name is unusual… and so is the nationality… You might be able to get a Lore check for it, though.)
Lobelia tilts her head to the other side… ((on it))
Lobelia rolled 4d6 and got 3, 1, 4, 6 ( Total: 14 )
[OOC] Lobelia: -1 LP for two successes
Elbereth: "Fipala…?" She looks concerned. "My apologies traveler, your city perished as long ago as mine."
Elbereth: "Although I cannot say where the devils went after. It was abandoned for quite some time and only kobolds stay there now."
Peter|GM: "Well, I can count the days since I've eaten."
Peter|GM: He sits down on his bedding. "I knew my situation was quite bad."
Peter|GM: "The Patrons have left, haven't they?"
Elbereth: "I am afraid your race doesn't have that sort of life expectancy." She frowns.
Lobelia nods. "Nevermind the city, it's been centuries since the tribes with names like yours have been around."
Elbereth: "I have heard that term a few times now. Who are the patrons?"
Peter|GM: He smiles, big and bright.
Peter|GM: "Ahh, that question is music to my ears!"
Peter|GM: "They built this place. Then they ran, clawing and scratching over one another to escape, in the end."
Peter|GM: "In between, they hosted, treated, and lorded over all the peoples of the world, inviting some in here…"
Peter|GM: "To fawn over them, consort with them, punish them, fatten them with manna, and slaughter them."
Peter|GM: "Well," A proud, tricky look.
Peter|GM: "They missed the last step with me."
Hayreddin: "Your willpower to outlast is outstanding!"
Hayreddin: "One-in-a-generation, if you don't mind the phrase."
Peter|GM: "Haha,"
Peter|GM: "I don't."
Elbereth smiles at the stranger. "He doesn't say that lightly given we share company with an If-Ys."
Lobelia: "Do you… Still eat? I've got some jerky."
Elbereth: "Why did the patrons abandon everything?"
Elbereth: "I feel like you are intentionally being cryptic? Or perhaps what you consider obvious has been lost to time."
Peter|GM: "I'd like to eat. And-"
Peter|GM: "Could be that. I mean, I don't know why the patrons abandoned everything."
Peter|GM: "They sounded an alarm. And then started running. And killing eachother. And their monsters…"
Hayreddin: "By now, even their bones have brushed to dust, and the site still lives."
Lobelia takes out a ration of jerky and hands it over with a smile. "Sounds like we're better off without them, really."
Elbereth: "A group came by here earlier and took the seed that was housed in this Arcolith. Do you have any idea why someone would want to gather them all?"
Peter|GM: "The seed…"
Peter|GM: "…Well, it's the light from that that made me into…" A gesture at himself. "This."
Peter|GM: He pauses. "Whatever dusty memory I've got is about to be real useful, isn't it?"
Elbereth smiles slightly. "You could say that."
Peter|GM: "It's some kind of watery manna thing. I think… everything in this Arcolith… was leading up to it, had to do with it."
Hayreddin: "Knowledge is the rarest of treasures- finding it, absorbing it, transferring it."
Peter|GM: "The entire song and dance, the prisoners and their honored guests, were all… like a cup, for drinking it."
Peter|GM: He balances his marking stone in his hand, considering.
Peter|GM: "Every people had to send… emissaries to the Arcolith."
Peter|GM: "There, they were divided. Some were imprisoned, others were… hosted. Especially if they were pretty, or were carrying tribute."
Peter|GM: "But we all ended up in the light of the Seed. And you don't really work right, after that."
Peter|GM: "And then they - sacrificed? Sacrificed you."
Elbereth: "What was the benefit to stuffing a person full of mana and then expelling it along with their life?"
Lobelia wiggles the jerky back and forth in her hand. "Does that mean you've got some friends here?"
Peter|GM: He realizes that he had forgotten it, and moves to take it from Lobelia.
Peter|GM: "It was the only way to store it…?" A sigh. "Maybe it made it a delicacy."
Peter|GM: "But no - just me. The siren went off midway through my - execution?"
Peter|GM: "Just me with the glow who didn't get offered up for it."
Elbereth frowns slightly. "It doesn't make sense. The empire has razed and murdered any they've conquered. I have not seen them take prisoners, so how do they intend to use the seed…?"
Hayreddin: "Watch for them to begin taking prisoners."
Peter|GM: "A Red Empire, or a Black Empire?"
Hayreddin 's eyes dart left, right, and he responds- "Ah, both, really."
Elbereth smiles slightly. "A Red-Black empire. The first in almost a millenia."
Peter|GM: "Ahh,"
Peter|GM: "This era's proper fucked, isn't it?"
Elbereth: "The last century has progressively gotten worse after each transfership of power, I'm afraid."
Peter|GM: "Well, I know one thing the seed could be used for."
Hayreddin: "From your own tale, there can always be some sort of incident that turns the situation around."
Hayreddin: "That is what many of us work for!"
Peter|GM: A weak smile. "You can do it."
Hayreddin: "So!" He claps his hands. "You were about to say?"
Elbereth glances briefly at Hayreddin, but it seems he said it first.
Peter|GM: "Well, I'm still here. At the very least, it can make someone live…"
Peter|GM: He pauses. " 'live' …"
Peter|GM: "For centuries."
Elbereth: "I wonder if all the seeds do different things, then? If that was their goal they already had access to two arcoliths."
Lobelia looks off into the distance, glaring off into the corner. "…that bloody captain…"
Peter|GM: "The Empire's got all three arcoliths…" He finally takes the jerky from Lobelia, and considers it. He gets close to eating it, then, doesn't.
Peter|GM: "They're probably stocked up on weird patron magic, then."
Peter|GM: "They used to give some of it out. I can't imagine what would happen if one folk had all of it."
Hayreddin shakes his head. "I do not give thought to the insanity."
Elbereth: "Given the Empire controls the other two, I wonder if there is any point to visiting them? I find it hard to believe they would not have extracted what they wanted from it after all this time."
Elbereth: "They arrived at the doorstep of Filios within three days of it being opened."
Hayreddin: "It would do well to gather information about the other arcoliths- time since arriving, whether their presence has fluctuated…"
Hayreddin: "A chance to steal the light from their eyes must be found."
Hayreddin: "We lack numbers and even speed, from the reports. Each strike against them must be decisive and crippling."
Elbereth scrunches up her face. "If they need a vessel to store power from the seed, I admit I am worried about if they intend to let Lady Mcgunnery leave with payment rendered."
Peter|GM: "The other Arcoliths…"
Hayreddin: "Pray they do not alter the deal any further." He crosses his arms. "But the prayer will doubtly save from their desire."
Peter|GM: "From what I overheard, the one in the southeast, across the ocean, is some sort of library."
Peter|GM: "The one in the Imperial country, it's…" He frowns. "…maybe a hotel, or something? The patrons talked about going there to rest."
Peter|GM: "Graveyard could do just as well."
Peter|GM: "I know this is the only one of the three proper folk were welcome at."
Elbereth: "A grand hotel in the Imperial capital you say…?" She glances to her side briefly before shaking her head and smiling. "I suppose we'll have to look into that one."
Hayreddin: "Hah! I would find it hard to sleep in such a place…"
Hayreddin: "Sir Sumerees, what do you plan to do now? I would secure you passage back to a village if you so wished, though…"
Hayreddin: "I cannot imagine the empire would let an opportunity to test whatever mechanization they are preparing on one already bathed in the light of the seed."
[OOC] Hayreddin: *opportunity pass
Hayreddin: "But if you would wish it, I would do everything in my power to see you safe!"
Elbereth: "I do apologize for badgering you with so many questions, Sumerees." She performs an elegant bow before smiling. "Elbereth, at your service. Should you will it, I am willing to take you back to Fipala for closure. It is my duty to see that all of our guests are properly cared for."
Peter|GM: "I think," he says.
Elbereth: "My companions are already close to the Vagabond Road. I could take you with me."
Peter|GM: "With the seed gone, I might not make it to Fipala."
Peter|GM: "I'm dimmer today than I was before, and I have no appetite for-" He hands the jerky back to Lobelia.
Peter|GM: "If I can be a little helpful, I guess it means I've held on for some reason."
Elbereth: "I admit that it is a lengthy journey by foot, but what if I could warp you there directly?"
Lobelia takes the food back. "Hm. Would you be able to hold on if you had an arcane anchor of some sort? I believe we've got an orb at camp with no enchantments to speak of."
Peter|GM: "I'm no magician."
Peter|GM: "But it's worth a shot."
Hayreddin: "I thank you, Sir Sumerees, for letting me bear witness to such a will. It gives me the courage, that I could do the same!"
Peter|GM: "If you bring me to Fipala, then…" He laughs, cracking.
Peter|GM: "Well, I'll know I outlived each and every one of the bastards that sold me out."
Elbereth: "How was the selection process chosen among tribes and cities for offerings?"
Peter|GM: "In Ecafa, they did it from the royal family. Fipala offered their holy prisoners."
Peter|GM: "Ivique's were volunteers, or murderers."
Elbereth nods before shaking her head. "Immortality that is tied to close proximity to the Water Seed. I am unsure why the Empire desires such a thing if you are about to flicker out a mere two days after its removal. As much as I wish I could return you to the seed, it is outside my power with the time remaining. Please tell me what you wish for today. You have my utmost attention."
Peter|GM: "There's no sea tribe,"
Peter|GM: "And everyone that's wronged me is dead."
Peter|GM: "I think I can pass with no regrets."
Peter|GM: "I only ask that you do your best with this mess."
Elbereth smiles. "If that is your wish. I'll see to it that others do not have to suffer what you did."
Hayreddin: "So it will happen!"
Hayreddin thumps his chest!
Peter|GM: "That's so."
Peter|GM: He stands, and flickers.
Elbereth: "Farewell, Sumerees. It was a pleasure to meet you." She bows once more.
Peter|GM: And then, he is gone.
Peter|GM: You have a strange feeling for a moment, and it passes. +2 EXP.
Hayreddin observes a moment of silence, then turns to the party.
Elbereth performs a quick last rites before closing her eyes for a moment. A smile when they open as she surveys the rest of the room. "As you saw, knowledge Lady Wintervine is often overlooked by treasure hungry Captains."
Lobelia gives a moment of quiet for the spirit… Then… "And what will you do with it now that you possess it? I'm trying to keep a distance from Imperial territory, we'll need to discuss a new contract if you wish me to accompany you to one of the other arcoliths."
Elbereth: "Master Hayreddin, are we in agreement to finish searching the rest of Site B for clues before we venture back to the mainland?"
Hayreddin: "We are, for once we leave here, I doubt it would be easy or healthy to return."
Elbereth smiles at Lobelia. "Initially? I was intending to return to Leviathan and pay out everyone before resuming my position at the inn. But such an earnest request with his last words. And I am at fault for many embarking on this journey to begin with. If they intend to follow up on it, the least I could do is see them home safely. If it is money you seek though, I am more than willing to pay out of my share."
Elbereth: "And should we acquire naval passage, the Arcolith to the southeast is about as far away from the Empire as you can get if you'd prefer?"
Elbereth: "They control it certainly, but it's a far step from waltzing into the capital."
Lobelia: "Then let's consult with the others first." Lobelia sighs. "This is turning out to be quite the journey you've set us on, isn't it?"
Hayreddin briefly searches the room, not disturbing Sumerees' resting spot, and if there's no other exits…
Elbereth smiles. "I am afraid I hold that weight on my shoulders with Lady Mcgunnery no longer present all of our decisions fall on me."
Elbereth: "If you do not hold a vested interest in it, I will at least do my best to ensure it is a well prospected job for you."
Peter|GM: Indeed, there's no other exits.
Peter|GM: (You might, perhaps, be able to access Site A from down here, but… it would take a lot of levitation.)
Elbereth: "I am afraid that we must discuss that after a rest, however. I appear to be at my limit and we will resume exploring the Site after."
Elbereth bows slightly before starting to make her way back to the sanctuary.
Hayreddin starts to backtrack. "A well deserved rest, no less."
Lobelia: "Very well. That does sound wise. I'll see what manner of tale this piece of arcotech has to tell."
Peter|GM: A BRIEF RESPITE, BEFORE FURTHER TRIALS.

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