Zg Session 137c

Aleith|DM: When your senses come back to you, you feel yourselves laying down on a mattress with a sheet draped over top of both of you.
Aleith|DM: The sheet is slightly damp, and the room smells of rot and mould.
Chandrasekhar sniffs- inhales- can replicants inhale? What's the status here- and very studiously does not make a sound.
Aleith|DM: You can smell, but you don't need to inhale. Your own body does, however, and the duplicant mimics the motions.
Aleith|DM: You can vaguely hear some sounds of multiple people weeping in the distance.
Phyllis takes the sheet off herself, or at least her replicant. If something's this wet and moldy, odds are no one's been around this part in a while.
Chandrasekhar senses motion, and mirrors Phyllis' action, looking around carefully.
Aleith|DM: You appear to be atop a tower. There's a cracked skylight above you, where some water still slowly drips from. A glass door on one side of the room opens out on to an ornate marble balcony.
Aleith|DM: The tower is still stable, but the wooden core appears to be slowly rotting.
Chandrasekhar: "Hn." Is there a window, or just the skylight? Well, there's a glass door- and he heads towards it, trying to get his bearings.
Aleith|DM: From the balcony, you can see that the tower overlooks a majestic view of the city, covered in snow. You're not far from the Grand Librarium.
Aleith|DM: Looking around, you can spot 4 lantern towers around the city. Phyllis recognizes them as belltowers that have been remodeled.
Aleith|DM: From what Harkover told you, Arch Secula Natalia Degaspare is alone in being in charge, with the church and religion in general now outlawed in Crisillyir. She should be found at the Cathedral of Trigenes, atop the volcano Enzyo Mons. Speaking of which, the maw of the volcano is no longer glowing, and the Cathedral at the edge of the caldera looks different: most of its higher levels are missing.
Aleith|DM: The sound of weeping is coming from a few dozing people below you. You can barely make out some defiant prayers through the weeping and the wind.
Aleith|DM: But city guardsmen are advancing on them from two directions.
Chandrasekhar glances towards Phyllis- and then nudges his head downwards, in the direction of the voices. "Shall we make some friends along the way?"
Phyllis: "I was thinking much the same."
Chandrasekhar takes point, then. Hopefully they'll get there before the guard.
Aleith|DM: It's only a 70-foot drop. They're at the base of the tower.
Phyllis drops down.
Chandrasekhar glances at Phyllis- will she be able to get down? …she'll manage. He teleports down the gap!
[OOC] Phyllis: Arcane Gate], Jaunting. There's ways.
Aleith|DM: You arrive down in front of the worshippers, startling both them and the guards, who pull up a bit short, warily.
Chandrasekhar holds up his hands, peaceably. There are certain luxuries afforded by the element of surprise.
Guard: "You lot there, your under arrest for illegal worshipping. Come quietly now for reeducation."
Phyllis tilts her head and stretches out her hands, palms open. "Please, reconsider. At least allow them this much for a few more minutes." She'll use [Suggestion] if she has to turn them away, at least for a time. At least long enough to free this city from their grasp.
Aleith|DM: Diplomacy?
Aleith|DM: Roll it.
Phyllis rolled d20+43 and got 15 ( Total: 58.0 ) for arcana swapping is bonkers
Aleith|DM: It sure is.
Aleith|DM: Hivemind-influenced, they try to argue with you about their orders, but your own knowledge of some of Crisillyir's laws allows you to spin circles around their arguements, and soon enough you have them going on their way to go check with their superiors.
Aleith|DM: The worshippers thank you profusely and ask if there's anything they could do to help you.
Phyllis glances over at Chandra. "I can't think of anything in the immediate sense. Do you think we can go talk some sense into the Arch Secula?"
Chandrasekhar: "What would it take to secure a meeting with Degaspare? Or, barring that, sneak into…. what's left of the Cathedral?"
Worshipper: "She's overseeing the deconstruction of the Cathedral. You'd find her up there," he says, pointing at up at the building on the volcano.
Phyllis nods at Chandra. "Shall we, then? We don't have much time."
Aleith|DM: It's quite the hike, as you recall.
Phyllis: But not the jaunt, no?
Aleith|DM: No, it's easily in sight.
Chandrasekhar: "Be safe, all of you. Outlast the end of the world. We plan to."
Phyllis: "In a few days' time, you'll know if we've succeeded in averting it or not."
Phyllis whisks away to the site they pointed at.
Chandrasekhar follows!
Aleith|DM: You're not that far from the Cathedral, and you can see from here that it's being carefully disassembled, not merely demolished. Hundreds of people cling to scaffolding around the building, chipping free bricks one at a time, then carrying them down so Natalia can disenchant them.
Aleith|DM: There's a couple dozen guards scattered around the cathedral.
Chandrasekhar: "…refresh my memory, Ms. Lenz. What are the properties of the bricks, that they would be treating them so carefully?"
Phyllis likely knows, even if her player doesn't. [Religion]?
Aleith|DM: Sure.
Phyllis rolled d20+38 and got 9 ( Total: 47.0 )
Aleith|DM: They're enchanted for protection and wards against evil, reinforced by the prayers of the faithful after all these centuries.
Phyllis relays that, along with, "Evil, in the … fundamental sense of divine lines of some perceived essential nature, not the true and insidious evil that we've seen take over the church from within."
Phyllis: "At least that's what I understand."
Phyllis: "In any case. Shall we make our presence known?"
Aleith|DM: Like demonic relics and the like.
Phyllis: Like Ashima-Shimtu, she was thinking, who, despite being a demon, seems to be acting good, not evil.
Chandrasekhar: "Hm. Wonder whose service they're working in, and what plans they have. Tch. One hopes it won't matter."
Chandrasekhar confers with Phyllis for some time, until they have a plan of attack.
Phyllis is going to approach with [Chameleon's Mask], keeping her hidden and stealthy until she's within 20 squares of the Arch Secula. That's all she needs for the next two parts of her plan: [Steal Time] to keep her frozen so she can't sound the alarm, followed by a thoroughly-enhanced [Slumber of the Winter Court] around both her and the Bookpin squad.
Phyllis rolled d20+43 and got 20 ( Total: 63.0 ) for Chameleon's Mask - using Arcana score in place of a Stealth roll.
Aleith|DM: Okay. You feel free to move yourself to where you want on the map. You can make Steal Time as your Surprise Round action while Chandrasekhar teleports in to sight with his action.
Phyllis rolled d20 and got 2 ( Total: 2 ) for but first, Keeper's Prescience preroll
Phyllis rolled d20+33 and got 6 ( Total: 39.0 ) for Steal Time vs will
Phyllis rolled d20 and got 19 ( Total: 19 ) for init roll
Aleith|DM: Miss!
Aleith|DM: Battle Order: | 44:Phyllis | 35:Chandrasekhar | 25:Bookping Squad | 22:Natalia Degaspare | 18:Defence Squad A | 18:Defence Squad B |
[OOC] Phyllis: Slumber of the Winter Court]!
Phyllis rolled d20 and got 3 ( Total: 3 ) for but first, Keeper's Prescience preroll
Degaspare: "Constables! You dare!" She turns towards the workers on the Cathedral. "Ring the bell! Sound the alarm!"
Phyllis rolled d20+43 and got 18 ( Total: 61.0 ) for …….. also first, [Minor->Trick of Knowledge]
Aleith|DM: You're going to need that attack bonus.
Phyllis: Not for Slumber, no. :3
Aleith|DM: …admittedly true.
[OOC] Aleith|DM: Secular Presence: Arcane, divine, primal, psionic, and shadow powers take a -5 penalty to attack and damage rolls if used within or against targets within Natalia Degaspare's aura. Utility powers with those power sources cannot be used in the aura, nor affect creatures in the aura. Powers of magic items cannot be activated in the aura. Powers that have an indirect effect, such as using telekinesis outside the aura to throw something into the aura, function normally.
Phyllis: "Save your fire for my signal." (( when I can use [Make it So] on a different turn, it's a standard ))
Phyllis rolled 2#d20+35(1) and got 17 ( Total: 52.0 ) for Slumber of the Winter Court, vs Will - Arch Secula, Bookpin squad
Also rolled 2#d20+35(2) and got 16 [Total: 51.0 (High), Avg: 16.00]
Total: 103.0, Avg: 16.50
Aleith|DM: -5 to both of those still hits!
Phyllis: Dazed (Save Ends). [Orb of Imposition] [Amulet of Elegy] [Orb of Mental Dominion] applied to the Arch Secula: -13 to first save, roll twice and take lower of the two rolls on saves. Bookpin just has -2 on the first save. Both have -2 to subsequent saves. First failed saving throw = unconscious for 1d4 hours.
Degaspare: "There are no gods," she says. "No miracles here. We have cast aside our old superstition. They have no power here." But her speech is starting to drawl a bit.
Phyllis: "There is no fate but that which we make for ourselves."
Phyllis: "You are correct in this."
Aleith|DM: Chandrasekhar!
Phyllis: "This is a battle between wills. And as you will see, mine is simply stronger."
Chandrasekhar: "There are no gods, Degaspare, but there are miracles. There is a light in this world, and it is us. Your own teachings proclaim it so, and about this, at least, they have ALWAYS been correct. I acknowledge this, and invite you to return to your faith!"
Chandrasekhar moves in, slightly, prays for [Virtue], and then goatfires the heck out of squad B!
Chandrasekhar rolled d20+32 and got 20 ( Total: 52 ) for vs. will 40
Aleith|DM: Critical hit! [KO!] [KO!]
Chandrasekhar: "We are the answer to your unvoiced prayer."
[OOC] Aleith|DM: 4!] [4!
Aleith|DM: The Bookpin Squad moves next to the Arch Secula, and seeing their charge in peril, the bodyguards begin chanting in unison to try breaking your spell. [Magical Defender]
Aleith|DM rolled d20-2 and got 8 ( Total: 6 )
Aleith|DM: But falls asleep, and their trait is now null and void.
Phyllis rolled d4 and got 4 ( Total: 4 ) for asleep for this many hours
Degaspare: "We shall let science and innovation carry us into the future!" She pulls a heavy shotgun from within her robes, and fires it at Chandrasekhar. [Repeating Shotgun]
Aleith|DM rolled 2#d20+35(1) and got 3 ( Total: 38.0 )
Also rolled 2#d20+35(2) and got 18 [Total: 53.0 (High), Avg: 18.00]
Total: 91.0, Avg: 10.50
Aleith|DM rolled 2d8+6 and got 6, 5 ( Total: 17.0 )
Aleith|DM: Hitting for 17 damage! [Due to Metal Shell, you only take 7 damage]
Aleith|DM rolled d20-13 and got 14 ( Total: 1 )
Aleith|DM: She then falls asleep, the shotgun slipping from her grasp.
Chandrasekhar makes an amused noise, and brushes it off. "Did I contest that?"
Aleith|DM: The workers are still moving towards the bell in the only-slightly-dismantled tower atop the cathedral.
[OOC] Phyllis: Can they hear us from here?
Aleith|DM: …or the workers were all knocked out in a blast of divine vengeance [Vision of the Fall.]
Chandrasekhar draws breath for a stirring speech - and then thinks better of it, considering how time is of the essence, and instead, gives them a stirring display of his luminous faith. They'll get better, praise be to Ostea.
Phyllis rolls up her sleeves. "This might be a rude awakening, but hopefully this gets her up and snapped out of it." Despite the stakes being much, much higher, there is no 'oh gosh oh gosh oh gosh' this time around. [Coup de Grace: Illusory Ambush] - basically, over and over again until she hits.
Phyllis: Because if she misses, what the hell would happen?
Aleith|DM: Nothing. You're right about that.
Aleith|DM: She snaps awake, shouting in pain and fear, as the ghost councilor bound to her screams as well before fading away.
Phyllis rolled 6d12+40 and got 2, 1, 1, 7, 9, 7 ( Total: 67.0 ) for autocrit for coup de grace, psychic damage. Minimum 46 needed.
Phyllis kneels down. "Sorry for the rude awakening." She gestures to the scene full of merely unconscious workers. "We tried to be as gentle as possible."
Degaspare: "You…!" She struggles against her bonds as she looks back at the cathedral, before looking back out at the city. "…why hasn't it started yet?"
Degaspare: "Nicodemus will stop you!"
Phyllis: "As gentle as possible."
Phyllis: "Hear us out, will you? I told you, this is a battle of wills. What do you have to go on?"
Phyllis stands, her hands still outstretched, gesturing to nothing - no evidence to support her theories. "Mere faith in Nicodemus, the same faith that you eschew here?"
Phyllis: "Do you see him stopping me?"
Chandrasekhar steps forward, voice gentle. Or, well, as gentle as a replicant's can be. "Do you truly believe that he -should- stop us? In your heart and in the depth of your -faith-. That which drew you to the Church and its human message…"
Chandrasekhar nods, to Phyllis.
Phyllis: "The will to power cuts both ways, dear."
Degaspare: "All the church did was throw me in Nicodemus' direction. I've been working for him for years." She remains defiant.
Phyllis: "And it threw me into Risur's!"
Phyllis: "I am Crisillyrian, native-born, just like you!"
Degaspare: "I am well aware."
Degaspare: "And so you also know that this nation needed to be dragged kicking and screaming into the modern age, much to the corrupted clergy's dismay."
Degaspare: "And now they have been, under the Obscurati's guidance."
Chandrasekhar: "That element of truth which threw you towards the Church, before you saw what was, and knew only what could be. The first steps of that strange path which led you here."
Phyllis: "We agree on that as well. Yet Nicodemus will not lead you into such an age. The same evil that touched the church also touched him. The same tendril of corruption guides them both."
Chandrasekhar: "The path forked, but could it have forked otherwise? What would the Church of tomorrow looked like, under -your- leadership, -your- vision?"
Chandrasekhar: "Not Nicodemus'. Not the Obscurati's. Your own."
Aleith|DM: She frowns.
Aleith|DM: Make a Diplomacy check.
Phyllis rolled d20+43 and got 14 ( Total: 57.0 ) for Suggestion
Phyllis: "As we speak, he moves to cement his grasp. He is after mere power - treating us and the common citizen as his mere tools. A perfect order, all under his command."
Degaspare: "…and what would you suggest become of Crisillyir now? An emigrate and someone who's people we literally cut in half centuries ago?"
Phyllis: "I don't know. But that is up to Crisillyir and her citizens to decide for themselves, not a lone great man."
Phyllis: "Not I alone. Not him. Them."
Chandrasekhar: "I would suggest that Crisillyir live. That it be granted the possibility of a future. Of survival."
Phyllis: "From humble beginnings, once again, just as a certain fisherman. Yes?"
Aleith|DM: The Arch Secula sighs. "Maybe you're right. Destroying Alais Primos at the command of one man does not do us any favours, especially just to spite Risur's stand against him."
Aleith|DM: The hivemind dissipates from around her and the city, more felt than seen.
Phyllis: "There IS a spark of divinity. It is not from above, but from -within.-"
Chandrasekhar: "That is the hard lesson my people learned: that to live, and find joy in survival, is the highest truth and the core of our faith."
Degaspare: "Very well. Then you best win so that we can decide our own fate."
Chandrasekhar: "We intend to."
Phyllis gestures around the area, then smiles at Degaspare, eyebrows raised.
Phyllis: "I think we'll manage."
Degaspare: "True enough."
Phyllis gives a cheery wave before deactivating her duplicant and returning her consciousness to her original location.
Aleith|DM: Pemberton helps you out of your duplicant setup. "How'd it go?"
Chandrasekhar bows, without his characteristic grace, and then returns his consciousness.
Chandrasekhar: "Fairly well, I believe."
Pemberton: "Good to hear."
Chandrasekhar: "We'll see about the theological implications after we've finished saving the world."

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