Zg Session 72

Autumn 79, 8:30 PM
As you enter the Trophy Room (V) for the Panarchist's presentation, you can see several white sheets hanging on the wall, covering what are presumably stuffed animal heads. A pool table and a piano are on opposite sides of the room, and a set of instruments line the west wall. The entire north, south, and east walls are windows.
Several seats have been setup facing the east wall, which Han Jierre stands beside a sign showing a blank face under a yellow infinity sign, over a background of alternating white and blue stripes.
Gran Guiscard: "Okay, okay, now that spirits have been thoroughly tempered after that last presentation," he mutters, holding a freshly poured cocktail in one hand "-let's see if this one can spice things back up."
Oscan surveys the room before taking a seat. "This oughta be good, eh fella?"
Han: "Good evening, folks. I hope you've been enjoying yourselves tonight. My proposal is to grant individuals 'super-powers,' making governments unnecessary."
Han: "The Panarchists propose by far the most radical change of any starting faction in the Convocation. Our goal is to eliminate the ability of those in power to become corrupt, and our chosen method is to eliminate the need for people to be in positions of power in the first place."
Han: "The purpose of government has traditionally been to protect people as they travel, to protect property, and to enforce contracts. The Panarchists wish to shift these tasks to individuals."
Han: "We will use a plane of life with a Healing aspect, the same plane of space as the Colossus faction, to grant teleportation powers and the ability to sense events, and a plane of death with a Possession aspect. Combined, these planes will make people more resilient and able to heal from injury, able to infuse a tiny sliver of their soul into objects in order to bond with it, to sense those objects as easily as their own bodies, and to teleport easily."
Han: "People would no longer be vulnerable to assault, since unless an attack killed them before they could respond they could teleport away and quickly heal from their wounds. A person who attuned with an item would be able to find it if it were stolen (and just teleport in to take it back), and no one else could attune to it without the current owner's permission. People who made agreements would be able to share a bit of each other's soul, which would make pledges binding. Anyone who shirked on a promise would forfeit a piece of his soul."
Han: "This would drastically alter the nature of society, reducing the importance of places and increasing the value of trust over physical might. We encourage you to see such a world for yourself in the Portal Gallery."
Livia: "I suppose that depends on your definition of 'good'."
Gran Guiscard: "So this is granted to -everyone-, not just the moon-phase dealings of the Colossus pitch?"
Han: "That is correct."
Ken Don listens to the conversation silently. That's one way to get rid of the RHC.
Kiov Hetman twitches his nose. "Interesting."
Gran Guiscard: "The mind reels at the societal upheaval that would be forthwith. But for those with nothing, I could see the allure."
Oscan: "Y'don't get out much, do you, Jierra?"
Livia listens, lets out a puff of breath. "Clever, at least. Good use of the planes to try to solve the underlying problems for which governance is a solution, I'll grant you that.
Han: "I've travelled the world considerably, both as head of state and as a youth before that. I've seen a lot more than you'd think."
Oscan: "'the only flaw would be if they kill ya before you can reaction!' … I suspect at LEAST three of us right now could do that."
Kiov Hetman: "I assumed, going in, this would have the same predatory problems as the Colossus proposal - that eventually, it will accrete into the same sort of stratification as before, just with winning parties shuffled around."
Kiov Hetman: "I may be missing something, but I do not see that here."
Kiov Hetman: "If someone suffers, it is justice that they imposed on them self."
Han: "I certainly have a different goal in mind than Catherine, yes."
Livia: "There's reasons to vote for this one, at least. Don't know why the Colossus haven't packed up their things."
Gran Guiscard: "So we shall all be as gods."
Gran Guiscard: "You talk about injuries- how about starvation? Disease?"
Han: "Not just a select, special few, yes."
Gran Guiscard: "Do we die at all?"
Han: "Interesting questions. Starvation would take longer, I suspect, but would still be an issue without any nutrients nourishing the body. Disease would probably take longer to kill people as well, but would give a longer window to attempt treating it."
Gran Guiscard: "Are we of the ageless stars, living among huts of clay and fields of straw?"
Kiov Hetman: "Yet, one would argue that you get a distinct advantage in our current setup, and this would be worse off for you. Since we are not -yet- in a world that rewards altruism, I doubt that is your aim."
Han: "Death is still possible, including through old age, but violent death has to be done specifically before people would revive. There's a small window of time to do so."
Oscan: "Eeh. I don't think it would change the world overly much, just the way the game is played."
Han: "Likely not in your circles, no."
Oscan: "If your solution's not gunna get rid of my circles, it ain't worth much."
Ken Don: "For once the first time tonight, I'm inclined to agree with Oscan."
[OOC] Ken Don: -once
Livia: "I've got a question. You know about the Pyre's potential for compromise, I assume. If you were to attempt compromise with their faction, what would such a compromise look like, do you suppose?"
Kiov Hetman: "Ah. Additionally, what would we lose out on? You only mentioned what we would gain, but you forget, we trade away the planes we have."
Han: "The major overlap would be the plane of Space. There would have to be negotiations on which of mine or the Pyre's would stay."
Han: "With the Panarchists', we are unfortunately changing the planes of Space and Death, so we would be vulnerable to extraplaner visitors, but we're hoping the increased power and mobility will be to our advantage in case things become hostile."
Han: "We'd also lose the Dreaming and the Bleak Gate, unfortunately."
Livia: "At least you've the grace to consider it a sacrifice, rather than a convenience." She rolls her eyes dismissively of MacBannin.
Han: "Admittedly, Danor has less dealings with either plane, but the Obscurati has made considerable use of the Bleak Gate."
Han: "I imagine the loss of the Dreaming would be painful for Risur."
Kiov Hetman: "There's the rub. Hm."
Gran Guiscard: "It'll make for some odd poetry, that's for sure."
Gran Guiscard sips his drink. "Hrmmmm………………." he draws out, not commenting more.
Kiov Hetman: "I think there's a danger, at least, in assuming our newfound powers would be able to ward off interlopers. Do you know their capabilities?"
Kiov Hetman: "Or is this just conjecture?"
Han: "Sadly not much is known about other planes after thousands of years of separation."
Han: "It's hard to test without any solid data."
Livia: "Hm."
Han: "Any further questions?
Kiov Hetman: "Hm. At least the Pyre had the potential for a workaround, in potentially placing a plane with the same properties in the binary star slot."
Gran Guiscard shakes his head. "It was even more straightforward than the one-sentence pitch."
Kiov Hetman: "How flexible are you in changing this?"
Han: "We'll have to see where we stand after tonight's initial voting."
Kiov Hetman ndos.
Kiov Hetman: "That will be all from me for now."
Oscan folds his arms over his chest. "Naw. I thought there was gunna be more to tear into this than there was. An' i suppose for a short period of time before the ner'do'wells start getting creative it might help the most poor and downtrodden… but I just don't see it makin' the world that much of a better place, and long term see organized crime and, bizarrely, farmers comin' out on
Oscan top. … So I suppose I'm not really against it. "
Han: "Thank you for coming, then. I curious to see the votes tonight."
Oscan looks just a mite dissatisfied as he head over to the last presentation.
Obscurati: Afterwards, you make your way to the dance hall (CC), the room directly above the one you were just in. Numerous tables, chairs, stools, and other sets of furniture cover the dance floor here. Amielle Latimer floats near the window, a stand holding of a blue (ghostly?) hand touching a clock.
Amielle: "The Watchmakers propose to eliminate free will and design a thousand-year destiny of prosperity for the world."
Amielle: "So much of the progress these past two hundred years has been because of the scientific method. It proposes a theory, holds an experiment, strives to eliminate variables, and comes to a conclusion. I am Amielle Latimer, and any of you who have fired a rifled gun did so in part because I helped find a viable design and a way to manufacture it on a large scale. And it was through many experiments."
Amielle: "With this proposal too I have experimented. For decades I have discussed possible ways the world could become better, witnessed actual tests in limited environments like towns or the ever-popular demi-planes. And the problem, every time, has been that most splendid of variables: people."
Amielle: "Our researchers have determined that it’s just not possible to simply force people to behave a certain way via planar alignments, or elaborate interactions of magic. Free will is inherent to mortal intelligence. For a person to regularly choose moral actions, he must have been raised to value morality over selfish power. So I propose to eliminate free will entirely for one thousand years, during which we will enforce a precise course of events that will result, like clockwork, in a world where all people have been raised to behave morally. Then, after a millennium, the clock will wind down and leave all mortals with free will and a wholly moral society."
Amielle: "To accomplish this, I would replace three of the eight planes. Time shall have an aspect of Clockwork, and the plane’s connection will be inscribed with the details of destined events. I have an extensive series of tomes with a suggested future history, and despite some misgivings about the scale of my plan, I assure you that my fellow ghosts who have read it can endorse that it is a quality plan."
Amielle: "The plane of life will need a Goodness aspect to drive people against their will to be good. Death will have Domination to bind people so they are slaves. I’m not mincing words here. We’ll be enslaving the world for a millennium, ourselves included. I don’t suggest this course of action lightly, but I do not see a way to achieve true harmony while people are able to make the wrong choices."
Amielle: "The Watchmaker proposal is the riskiest of all the factions. True, we’ve created pocket dimensions and watched as those within acted as puppets, doing exactly what we scripted for them. But the specifics of my thousand year plan cannot be tested, just put into motion. But the design is flawless, and the risk is worth the reward."
Livia: "So… where's the betting pool on exactly how long until the regression to the mean?" She smiles a little thinly.
Kiov Hetman: "So. What is 'moral,' in this definition? Tell us a little more about the programming."
Gran Guiscard is snickering behind a gloved hand.
Amielle: "We're obviously hoping for no regression. That's the whole idea behind it."
Gran Guiscard: "Oh my goooooooods."
Gran Guiscard: "Well you certainly put your worst foot first, and all the more brave of you to do so."
Oscan: "So who's writin' the script? Do we get a peek at it before it goes onto stage?"
Gran Guiscard: "Though I- guess you don't have much else to lose, being dead and all."
Gran Guiscard: "Yes, yes, yes yes yes."
Gran Guiscard: "Who -is- the master playwright, here?"
Amielle: "As for 'moral', I'd suggest looking at the tomes - we will have copies available to peruse, but it's quite an undertaking to read it."
Amielle: "I'm the primary author but it's a group collaboration amongst many members of the Ghost Council."
Gran Guiscard begins to giggle, and then it turns into a riotous cackle.
Gran Guiscard: "This! Thiiiiiiiiis is the audacity I seek."
Gran Guiscard: "If I'm being rudely honest, do you feel any warmth in your- well, 'heart'- for this plan?"
Kiov Hetman: "I do not take issue with 'how,' necessarily - but I may take you up on an offer to speed-read those tomes. To determine the 'what.'"
Oscan shuffles forward to pick up a copy of the er, user manual for the plan, and browses through it.
Oscan: "Sounds like you've got at least ONE fan…"
Obscurati: One copy has several thick tomes.
Gran Guiscard claps once and leans forward in his seat. "The Watchmakers sit on the greatest epic- to be actually labeled as an 'epoch'- and all you speak of is the ending."
Oscan: "Eesh miss, you weren't kiddin' 'bout how thick this is. You could kill a man thrice over with all this."
Gran Guiscard: "What are the laws if not collective lessons from past injustice, or perceived injustice."
Gran Guiscard: "What is a folktale if not a society passing down its values from generation to generation."
Livia actually lets out an amused giggle at Gran's pun.
Amielle: "There are many shared values amongst the various societies what we will be aiming towards instilling."
Kiov Hetman: "And then what? After a thousand years, the people regain their free will, look at their past, look at their masters, and - as we are now with whoever put this planar arrangement into motion - overturn them?"
Gran Guiscard: "To those listening, I say- do not dream of a dreary day to day, written of morning bread to a bleak sunrise, an aimless toil into a cold hearth and dreamless sleep."
Gran Guiscard: "This- this! Is the chance to write the greatest history of all, with all the world as players."
Gran Guiscard: "If one can love from a story, then we shall love!"
Gran Guiscard: "If one shall weep, we will weep!"
Gran Guiscard: "Even an understudy is moved by the performance, even if they never leave the curtain. And here, we are all in the play!"
Gran Guiscard: "Nations can and will, rise and fall. Stars burn and the gems are driven up from the rough."
Amielle: "As Gran so eloquently put it, the plan does contain its own hardships but many are overcome with a positive outcome. "
Oscan: "So it the plan to mostly just get rid of theft and murder and war and the like and just… attempt to wipe the very idea of 'em from the minds of whoever's left a thousand years later?"
Gran Guiscard: "Wrong!" he dramatically points.
Gran Guiscard: "There will be theft! Murder! War! Atrocity!"
Gran Guiscard: "From them, borne hope! Will! Growth! Valor! Community!"
Oscan: "Sounds like a good story then, but a horrible plan for makin' the world a better place if we're all here premeditating it, no?"
Kiov Hetman: "All the world a stage for you, hm?"
Gran Guiscard: "For -us-. For everyone."
Amielle frowns at the word atrocity. "Most of that will be in there, yes. Though 'clearer' minds will steer clear of any mass atrocity."
Amielle: "Afterwards, people should continue travelling the path that was set before them, those still living at the time having been driven towards a better future.
Kiov Hetman: "Clearer minds. There's such a gradient, even in this world?"
Gran Guiscard: "To understand the soul is something that needs no protractor nor scale."
Amielle: "With the new plane of Life, 'goodness' will be closer to the forefront of everyone's mind as well."
Kiov Hetman: "That doesn't answer my question."
Oscan: "Sounds like a total crap shoot, to me. If ya got it in memory, someone's gonna emulate it. I mean hell, we've had what,, FOUR major wars that nearly destroyed the world in recent memory and have yet to really learn any good lesson from any of them?"
Gran Guiscard: "Amielle, I would be excited to peruse the plans and witness the painting. Though is there any way, inside the painting, to…" He does a few vague gestures with his hands. "…read back and forth, in the story?"
Amielle: "As much as I wanted to create a utopia for the next millennia, it was agreed that some strife needed to be written in for historical examples where good triumphed over evil during that time."
Kiov Hetman: "What distinction is there between our current course? Who says we currently even have free will?"
Amielle: "The painting is designed for one person at a time and only has a 1-minute cycle."
Amielle: "Please, I'm willing to discuss philosophy with you later, but can we at least assume that for now we have free will? Tests have shown that to be the case compared to the portrait, and I'm not wanting to hold this up with semantics."
Oscan snorts out a laugh.
Obscurati: One of the bookpin guards knocks on the wall before entering. "Everyone's here, right?"
Obscurati: He pulls out a list before checking names off, listing you each one-by-one, including Erskine. "Yep. All accounted for."
Oscan: "If we're defining 'everyone' as people what was in my group… then no I think we're missin' the latecomer still."
Oscan double takes in Erksine. "Oh, well I'll be! Didn't realize you WAS here, with as quiet as you've been!"
Erskine: "I don't have much to say."
Oscan: "You'd think a man in a position to change the very fabric of reality might have some opinions on the plans, but I suppose it takes all kinds, eh?"
The dwarf shrugs. "I prefer to listen and evaluate."
Erskine: "You've raised some interesting points."
Amielle: "Is something the matter?" she asks the guard.
Oscan: "Well anywho." Oscan turns his attention back to the ghost. "So if you've done a number of tests on other plans, and the sticking point always winds up being free will… why even bother having an end point for your plan? Why not program some sort of automaton overseer to continue bending the script for eternity?"
Guard: "We've had an incident. Ramos Zoltan was found murdered."
Oscan pauses for a second, then lets out a laugh.
Livia gasps!
Amielle sighs. "This is what happens when people don't act according to the script. We haven't even had a single vote yet."
Gran Guiscard gasps!
Kiov Hetman raises both eyebrows, balking. "Under what circumstances?"
Gran Guiscard: "See, normally that man would not have been murdered until he was meant to be."
Oscan: "All those security measures… and ya STILL let someone split through and kill someone? Ahahahah."
Guard: "If you think you can turn something up, you're welcome to look. He was found in the icebox."
Guard: "The bosses figure with everyone here someone can figure out what exactly happened."
Oscan: "So that someone could stop him over his cold, dead body, I presume." Oscan pauses for a half second before giggling under his breath.
Oscan: "Yeah sure, lets go have a looksie!"
Oscan hands over the stack of tomes to Gran before sliding off his chair.
Kiov Hetman: "He was my employer. I suppose I could."
Gran Guiscard shrugs. "I don't have any expertise in the matter, unless the knife came through a cardboard prop."
Ken Don: "I suppose its worth checking out before I investigate the paintings."
Gran Guiscard: "Buuuuuuut in interest in keeping this murder mystery dinner theatre together, I'll come with."
Amielle: "Alright, thank you all for coming. Sorry for the interruption but this is important to get to the bottom of. Thanks for your words of support, Mr. Guiscard."
Oscan: "Wouldn't that be a riot and a half, Mister Guiscard!"
Livia: "How awful…" She rises, slowly, drawn by that ancient sapient reflex, rubbernecking at a tragedy.
Gran Guiscard grins at Amielle. "It was a pleasure. I look forward to later meetings."
Obscurati: The guard shows you the way to the icebox on the first floor. You find Nicodemus and Vicemi looking over the scene. Ramos Zoltan was a businessman from Drakr, owner of numerous prisons in Drakr, and you find him covered in a thin sheen of ice, a dagger wound through his chest. A stone carving of a serpent sits on his lap.
Gran Guiscard: "You know, if the dagger would have been made of ice, it would eventually melt.'
Gran Guiscard: "-Leaving no trace of the murder weapon.-"
Kiov Hetman: "Except water."
Livia: "I've always wondered about that. Wouldn't it just shatter?"
Oscan tries to hold it in, doesn't quiet manage and laughs a bit more.
Guard: "All of them were at Ms. Latimer's proposal, Nicodemus sir." He salutes. "They wanted to take a look."
Oscan then moves closer to inspect the body. Cause of death was PROBABLY the dagger from the looks of it, but you never know.
Oscan: "You said he said he wanted us to talk a look."
Gran Guiscard: "It's more like this fellow sort of 'summoned' us, yes."
Nicodemus: "If you'd like to investigate, we'd appreciate the help. Unfortunately, whoever did this seems to have banished his soul as well, so it's become that more difficult."
Kiov Hetman: "I at least have a vested interest. I don't know about the others."
Ken Don nods before taking a look. He is supposedly an expert on necromancy, he can probably fudge something together given his real skill set.
Obscurati: The dagger wound does appear to be the cause of death, and no, there's no excess water frozen in the wound as far as you can tell.
Livia: "What's that little statuette?"
Obscurati: You do find a small nick on his ear, as if someone needed his blood. Also, there's a bit of milk still on his moustache.
Oscan: "Hmm. Looks like the dagger did the deed far as I can tell at least, and it wasn't a cover for something else." Oscan shrugs and steps back to give Ken some space.
Vicemi: "We fear that the status is a symbol of the White Serpent, also known as the Voice of Rot. We think this is a message from one of his followers."
Oscan: "Probably took 'em unaware when he was snacking. Dunno what that cut on the ear's all about though."
[OOC] Ken Don: Anything I can deduce from a heal check to start?
Kiov Hetman peers over. Phyllis at least notes the milk - either a snack, or something meant to appease fey spirits.
Obscurati: Just what Oscan found already. Arcana though?
Ken Don rolled d20+19 and got 20 ( Total: 39.0 )
Ken Don glances at Nico. "This reeks of Necromancy."
Oscan: "He DID say the soul was banished."
Obscurati: Zoltan was affected by enchantment magic, and the wound was caused by some sort of necromancy.
Obscurati: The stone statue itself is not magical.
Ken Don: "Bonds of Forced Faith requires both the subjects blood and milk. It causes any wounds inflicted on the main subject to be inflicted on those who submitted blood into a brew of milk instead, and share their strength with the main subject."
Ken Don: "It's a rather niche ritual and outside of myself, I doubt many would know it unless they were familiar with the witches of Cauldron Hill."
Oscan raises an eyebrow.
Ken Don: "I'm certain you know those in attendance better than I, though?" He smiles at Nico.
Oscan: "So y'mean to say we likely got another dead body somewhere as well?"
Ken Don: "Only if the person was dead to begin with, Oscan."
Ken Don: "What if a ghost did it?" He grins.
[OOC] Ken Don: *wasn't dead to begin with
Gran Guiscard: "(That's actually a good plot twist…)" he mutters to himself under his breath.
Nicodemus: "Interesting. That does sound likely. I'll have to consult with some people about it, but first I need to make some rounds and check in on everyone else. I'd advise travelling in small groups, of at least three, for now. I'll be calling people a few at a time tonight before the vote to speak with everyone individually as well."
Oscan considered, making a thrust gesture in the air. "That work? You don't really make a wound when you stab a ghost, so I assumed it wouldn't transfer over."
Ken Don: "If you cannot find another body, it is either very well hidden, or I would recommend you investigate your so called 'ghost council'."
Nicodemus: "I will be looking very closely at some of them. Let me know if you find anything else, please."
Vicemi scowls, but remains nearby along with a couple of guards.
Ken Don: "Certainly. I hope I was of use." He nods before excusing himself.
Kiov Hetman: "My condolences on our loss, sir." He nods at Vicemi.
Obscurati: It's close to 10 PM, and the initial vote will be held at midnight. You've got a couple of hours to kill, though Nicodemus did say he'd be calling people to speak with them.
Vicemi nods. "Can't even question or recruit the man after death. Whoever did this was thorough."
Ken Don is going to go investigate the paintings for now. He likely won't have an opportunity to get near that lighthouse until after the vote.
Kiov Hetman: "I have difficulty determining why he was a target. Drakr's a long way from Cauldron Hill."
Gran Guiscard: "Well, that was exciting."
Oscan: "Maybe he was payin' off a block of votes and someone didn't think that was fair, like?"
Livia: "Do we know where his allegiances led him?"
Kiov Hetman: "In the meantime, I intend to make good on my word and attempt to speed-read through the tomes that the Watchmakers had."
Oscan shrugs, with a glance in Kiov's direction.
Kiov Hetman: "And if he was engaging in such a practice, I feel a bit put-out that I was not aware of it."
Obscurati: The mood of the convocation seems to have turned wary. Many people seem to be gathering in the Trophy Room (V) or the Dance Hall (CC) to have large group discussions. Small groups of people are seen getting up to visit the portal gallery.
Kiov Hetman: "… though I suppose if no one wants to join me for that, it would still be best for me to not travel alone."
Oscan: "Hm? Oh right, exploring the portals. Right yeah, no reason to stop the fun now that a man's dead. Men die all the time! You can read while they ogle the new worlds."
Gran Guiscard: "Yup! Portal time."
Oscan: "What's first on the docket Don?"
Ken Don: "I wished to see the venue where people would have no desire to fight."
Kiov Hetman: "I suppose I could check out something from the library. Or make a copy."
Obscurati: Heading up to the portal gallery, there's a dozen paintings spread across the top floor. One for each of the main 5 factions, and seven other ones, labelled: Bards, Mortal Mind, Leave the Nest, Trial by Fire, Walking on Sunshine, Downward, and Menagerie.
Ken Don: "It was the most compelling pitch, after all."
Kiov Hetman: "The Pyre?"
Obscurati: A ghost councillor or two hovers near each painting.
Ken Don: "Although I imagine someone like yourself would become giddy like a child in the room full of lava."
Oscan: "Okay but if I may - we need to hit up the Menagerie before the night's grown old."
[OOC] Xavier Sangria: bro the EX version of that isn't until next week…
[OOC] Gran Guiscard: lolf
Obscurati: Alright. Miller's Pyre first?
Ken Don: "(When the night is over however, I need to pay a trip to the lighthouse. It controls the flow of oil for all the lamps in this building.)"
Kiov Hetman: "And see the fruits of the late man's labors, yes? Good."
Kiov Hetman: "I'm glad to have helped with it."
Gran Guiscard nods.
[OOC] Gran Guiscard: yup the pyre
Obscurati: This painting portal shows a library, but every table and shelf has some sort of weapon in clear view: guns, knives, swords, and the like.
Obscurati: Before letting people in, first a ghost councillor calls for a pair of prisoners to be retrieved.
Obscurati: The men arrive nervous and bickering, and the ghost councillor explains these are condemned men from Crisllyir, murderers both, and for the past week they’ve been giving half-rations to one, stoking discontent.
Obscurati: The men’s chains are removed, and they are shoved across the threshold of the demi-plane.
"There are plenty of weapons here," says the ghost councillor. "Only one of you is getting out alive."
Obscurati: Immediately the two men rush for the knife, and one gets it. He turns on the other, who shakes his head and cowers. The knife-wielder hesitates, then explains how upset he feels that the other guy has been treated better than him. The other guy says it’s not his fault how they were treated. The knife-wielder nods, looks uncomfortable, and then asks politely if the other guy will stay here so he can leave, and maybe get some food outside. The other guy agrees, saying that seems fair, and then thanks him for not being violent.
Obscurati: The knife-wielder steps back into the real world, and the other guy sighs, then grabs a book and starts reading.
Obscurati: The prisoners are then removed, and the guards take them away with orders to give them both a decent meal once they’re back in their cells.
Oscan: "…Yow."
Ken Don nods, seemingly satisfied.
Livia lets out a little puff of breath. "That's… certainly impressive." She seems almost /wistful/. Or jealous.
Kiov Hetman: "Not … entirely equitable, but not as messy as it could have been."
Gran Guiscard: "About what I expected."
Councillor: "As you can see, though they both went for the weapon, neither attacked and they talked out their problem instead."
Ken Don: "The world cannot be changed in one night. I imagine the effects would be even stronger after prolonged exposure?"
Kiov Hetman: "A slight misapplication of the classic Prisoner's Dilemma, as well. I would be interested in seeing a scenario where they must act against their own individual interests in order to achieve maximal benefit for the group."
Councillor: "The effects are immediate, as you can see. They didn't have prior exposure to the plane."
Xavier Sangria: "Good god. Does it work on monsters, though?"
Councillor: "I'm not sure, but I think sentience is required for the most effect. They would still have to hunt, after all."
Xavier Sangria frowns.
[OOC] Obscurati: Inside this plane, creatures gain a +10 bonus to Diplomacy checks, a +10 bonus to Insight checks, take a –10 penalty to Intimidate checks, and a –5 penalty to attack rolls. Additionally, a creature must make a saving throw each time it wants to take an action that would cause damage to another sentient creature, and if it fails it cannot attack that turn.
Xavier Sangria: "I like it, but I'm worried it'll turn you into so much helpless meat in the face of a beast attack."
Oscan: "Well. You can't exactly reason with a fish, stands to reason it wouldn't stop us from spearin' 'em?" Oscan looks to the ghost for confirmation.
Gran Guiscard: "I'd say it stands that the sense that 'you can't reason with beasts' would still hold."
Gran Guiscard: "It's not like we'd stop eating meat, right?"
Councillor: "People would need to still eat, yes."
Xavier Sangria: "Well good. I couldn't back a plan that made us all into vegetarians."
Obscurati: Alright. Which next?
Oscan: "Well there you go. You'd probably still have your guards and the like for monsters, then."
Kiov Hetman: "I at least want to retrieve one of the Watchmakers' tomes."
Gran Guiscard: "Watchmaker next then- their presentation is at least similarly and, sadly, short."
Xavier Sangria: "S'okay, you made it long enough for anybody else."
Gran Guiscard: "I had a lot to say!"
Xavier Sangria: "Boy ain't that the truth."
You look in on a quaint kitchen, lit by a single candle on the dining table. Within this portal painting, the world operates like clockwork. It is static normally until someone enters, and the guards have a prisoner on hand for the purpose. When people are ready to watch, they set a clock on the wall so its second hand is at zero, and then they push the man into the portal. He disappears, and the clock begins ticking.
A moment later, a door on the far side of the room opens and the man steps in. He closes the door, bends down to pet a dog who barks happily, then goes to a cabinet and pulls out a small cask of firedust with a short fuse sticking out of it. He sits at the table, lights the fuse, and places it in the bomb right in front of him.
The dog comes by, and the man moves to pet it, but his arm jostles the cask. It falls over and rolls for the far side of the table. The man stands up in surprise, and the table flips over. The cask hits the ground right as the table spins to the perfect orientation, and then an explosion goes off. The table blocks the force perfectly, and the man and dog are unharmed.
The man then does a perfectly choreographed jig for ten seconds, bows to the audience outside the painting, and steps out into the real world at precisely 60 seconds on the clock. The world inside the painting resets instantly to its base state.
Livia lasts about ten seconds before she looks away in extremely visceral disgust.
Gran Guiscard snickers.
Gran Guiscard: "Okay, okay, I take it back, the writers -do- have a sense of humor."
Xavier Sangria: "Well at least the dog is OK."
Oscan: "I realize they don't have a lot of time to plan these demonstrations but I'm not really sure what I was supposed to get outa that one other than 'we can make them follow the script'…?"
Xavier Sangria: "Pretty much that."
Kiov Hetman: "A script contained to a single room, timed for one one minute is a drop in the bucket compared to our entire plane for a thousand years."
Kiov Hetman: "Many, many more variables and constants to account for."
Kiov Hetman: "Incomprehensibly many."
Ken Don: "I have similar concerns."
Gran Guiscard: "A few evenings with a sweet white should help clear them up! Or not."
Obscurati: What's up next?
Oscan: "To the Panarchy!"
Livia: "I'm at least curious about what such a world might look like, which is more than I can say for the other two, so."
Kiov Hetman: "Agreed."
Xavier Sangria: "Yeah."
Obscurati: A three-story house with windows but no doors sits in a forest, the trees of which have high, climbable branches. The ghost councillor encourages you all to explore the house, preferably three at a time, which requires teleporting between rooms that have no normal entrance. They also encourage one person to ask a favour from one of the others.
Gran Guiscard shrugs and heads on in. "So… how does one teleport, do you just think and-" *poof*
Obscurati: Yep. Just like that.
Obscurati: You can teleport anywhere you can see or are familiar with, at will.
Gran Guiscard pops around the field a bit, then up in the trees, peers into a window and pop- pop- pop-
Obscurati: There's lots of windows and openings between the various rooms and the floors, but no stairways, doorways, or ladders.
Livia: "…think of the architectural possibilities."
Oscan: "Guiscard, regale us with a funny tale!"
Oscan: "Or give me a good smoking pipe if the favor was suppose to be for a thing."
Obscurati: The favour could be anything, really.
Kiov Hetman: "Gran, would you kindly go fuck yourself?"
Xavier Sangria: "Whoa whoa, that's the kind of thing that can injure a man."
Gran Guiscard: "Alright- one bright day, in the middle of the night, two dead boys got up to fight. Back to back, they faced each other, drew their swords and shot at each other."
Obscurati: When you start telling the story, Gran, you feel a subtle nudge to follow through and finish the story, like a gentle push at the small of your back.
Gran Guiscard: "If… if you don't believe me, it's true! Ask the blind lady at the corner, she saw it too..?"
Gran Guiscard: "…and I think I'll keep my second cigar, thank you."
Obscurati: By the way you all have regeneration 20 while in here.
Gran Guiscard: "…ha!"
Gran Guiscard: "What an odd compulsion."
Gran Guiscard: "But no, this is of fine vintage! I will not hand it over!"
Kiov Hetman picks a flower, handing it to Livia.
Obscurati: Livia, feel free to teleport around a bit…?
Gran Guiscard: "This is an interesting twist that Han didn't really mention."
Gran Guiscard does flick down a cigar.
Livia has been, in point of fact! (Eventually, passing close enough to Kiov to accept a flower.)
Obscurati: Kiov, you can sense where the flower is perfectly as she teleports around, and could teleport near it as if you were familiar with the area it's in.
Gran Guiscard: "Hey, someone take that."
Gran Guiscard: "I'll try and take it back."
Kiov Hetman: "Be on your way, now."
Livia flits away!
Gran Guiscard teleports down to get it.
Gran Guiscard: "This place enforces contracts? More like a battle of wills."
Gran Guiscard exits the portrait.
Kiov Hetman waits a few hops, them jumps to the flower. He also happens to be leering in his best effort to surprise whoever has it.
Livia yelps!!
Xavier Sangria: "Seems interesting."
Livia: "O- oh! It's you."
Kiov Hetman: "Yes."
Kiov Hetman gestures at the flower. "I am responsible for what I have tamed, you see."
Obscurati: Colossus or Arboretum next?
Gran Guiscard heads for Colossus!
This world has a dramatic cliff overlooking a twenty-foot chasm, and on the far side waits a house made of huge blocks of stone. Within the house is a clay stele with a stylus leaning against it. Visitors are encouraged to go inside, jump across the gap, then carve their name into the stele to take dominion over the space. When they’re done enjoying the power that grants them, they should erase their name from the clay and emerge so someone else can try it.
Kiov Hetman: "'Should.'"
Oscan dashes through at top speed to get there first!
Inside the demiplane, creatures have their lifting capacity multiplied by over 100. The distance they can leap is likewise magnified dramatically. They have resist 20 all, regeneration 20, and a +5 bonus to saves.
Obscurati: Once you have claimed dominion in the area, you gain the ability to sense all events in the area regardless of line of sight, gain a +10 bonus to Perception, and can teleport as a move action to anywhere in the area.
Kiov Hetman will be there second to test Oscan's dominion.
Oscan hoists up the stele, teleports to the exit, walks outside. Then tosses it to the ghosts. "And that's why this plan is shit. '
Livia watches the pissing contest from the other side of the painting, laughing.
Obscurati: The ghost councillor sighs and telekinetically hoists the stele up before heading inside to set it back in place.
Oscan: "'please erase your name so other people can try'… That was a good laugh at least."
Gran Guiscard: "It -looked- fun though."
Kiov Hetman: "Tragedy of the commons."
Oscan: "Oh no doubt, whoever gets a domain is in for some fun times before they get shanked so someone else can seize control of it."
Obscurati: A verdant garden waits within the Arboretum painting, lit by a warm (but illusory) sun.
Gran Guiscard waltzes in.
Obscurati: A person who touches a plant motivates it to grow, making the plantlife almost as malleable as clay. With a concerted effort of will, the clouds overhead can shift and weather can change. The air is invigorating and crisp, and water from a fountain here restores all the healing surges of creatures who drink from it (though resting is still necessary to actually heal). Trees here provide the most succulent fruit, and one unusual tree actually has haunches of medium-rare beef dangling from its branches.
Gran Guiscard: "…"
Gran Guiscard: "Who is brave enough to sup on treebeef with me?"
Oscan: "Oh, oh, me!"
Livia: "Goodness, they undersold this in the presentation."
Obscurati: It's a bit plain. Could use some seasoning, or maybe some kind of dip.
Gran Guiscard picks one of the haunches and sits down next to the fountain. After a bite, he drinks of the fountain.
Obscurati: That, and it's room temperature.
Oscan: "Good Gods it's really pre cooked!"
Oscan: "I mean, it also tastes like it's been sitting on the table for an hour,"
Oscan: "But that's amazing!"
Gran Guiscard: "With the right seeds, I bet it could be reflavored in, well, far less time than a normal basting and glazing."
Livia: "Nothing a good quick sear couldn't fix."
Oscan snatches one of the fruit off a nearby tree and bites into it before nodding. "I think I'm warming up to this plan! He should had said all you'd need to do is complain about being hungry at a tree in order to get a full meal! Hard to compete with that."
Kiov Hetman: "But again, similar to Watchmakers, we discussed that this plan's problems were with scale."
Kiov Hetman: "A portrait of this size illustrates a microcosm when we're dealing at the macro level."
Kiov Hetman: "I can barely keep knowledge of how the towers work in my head! That is significantly smaller than the planes."
Livia: "Oh, I don't think it'll -work-." Pause. "Wait, why don't they just… install little pocket gardens inside everyone's homes? What does it take to run these, I wonder."
Kiov Hetman: "The problem was in maintaining places away from civilization, you still retain that even in the case of having gardens inside homes."
Livia: "No, no, I mean. Just give everyone a painting they can step inside and harvest some treebeef."
Livia: "I'm sure there's a reason you can't just do that, but permit me my flight of fancy."
Oscan: "Sounds like a question for the curators ta me."
Obscurati: Alright. So Bards shows the interior of a small concert hall.
Obscurati: Mortal Mind has a small field with several chapels and shrines, each devoted to a different faith, and a mechanical device within can be heard playing a recording of different pieces of sacred music.
Obscurati: Leave the Nest shows empty air, with a storm-tossed sea forty feet below. An island rises out of the sea twenty feet away, with a large flock of birds atop it.
Obscurati: Trial by Fire shows a pool of lava with books scattered about the floor, none of them burning. A twenty-foot high ledge stands at one end.
Obscurati: Walking on SUnshine shows a three-dimensional obstacle course with poles and balance beams, and padded walls around it. Windows exist on all six walls, and beams of light shine in through each.
Obscurati: Downward shows two sets of stone stairs leading up to a fountain, from which water pours over a ledge into a pool.
Obscurati: Lastly, Menagerie shows a snowy hill with evergreen trees overlooking an icy pond.
Oscan: "Signifigantly less prostitues than advertised.
Kiov Hetman: "Oh, I see. Personal pocket motes."
Obscurati: A guard comes up and calls for Xavier, Kiov, and Livia to come speak with Nicodemus shortly. The rest of you can explore some of the minor worlds while you wait.
Gran Guiscard heads to Menagerie (first) while he waits.
Xavier Sangria heads down to the summons looking pensive.
Livia is totally gonna beeline Bards and Mortal Mind! …once she gets back. In the meantime, it's time for a chat! This ought to be interesting.
Obscurati: The ghost councillor says that people inside that world, living creatures can shapeshift at will to any creature within a size category of their normal form. They recommend people consider swans, bears, eagles, or even penguins.
Gran Guiscard: "Can I just… make myself taller?"
Obscurati: You could do that, too, yes.
Obscurati: The guard leads the three of you to the lighthouse. A marksman there (carrying a musket, of course) leads Xavier over to one of the two freight elevators first, taking you up to the top of the lighthouse to speak with Nicodemus on teh balcony.
Nicodemus stands there, facing you as you step off the elevator, cigarette in hand. "How are you doing tonight?"
Nicodemus: "Mr. Sangria."
Kiov Hetman: "Worn."
Xavier Sangria: "Well enough, sir. Worried we've got a murderer in our midst, impressed by some of these potential plans, horrified by some others. Yourself?"
[OOC] Livia: are we all up there or just Xavier
Obscurati: Just Xavier
[OOC] Kiov Hetman: oh
Nicodemus: "Tired. There isn't even a breeze from the sea to refresh myself. The murder worries me. Did you find out anything else related to it?"
Xavier Sangria: "Not really. I'm good with monsters. People killing each other is sorta outside my typical scope. Some of the others were talking about it being necromantic magic, but… that just puts it even further outside my zone."
Nicodemus: "True. Your view on life seems more…straightforward than some of the other members. What proposals worried you?"
Xavier Sangria: "Watchmakers is bloody terrifying."
Nicodemus: "It's certainly the most drastic."
Xavier Sangria: "And I dont think it has a snowballs chance in hell of working."
Nicodemus: "As much as I have my own doubts, what do you find wrong with it?"
Xavier Sangria: "I don't think you can ever eliminate outside variables, to use a phrase I heard tossed around a lot. And once the first domino goes down in your perfect well-oiled machine, it's a collapse."
Xavier Sangria: "Which means its a thousand years of everything going to shit, instead of coming out perfect."
Nicodemus: "More worried about the plan than the result, then? A valid concern. It's incredibly ambitious to control an entire world's movements."
Xavier Sangria: "Its more, I don't think the plan can possibly lead to the result."
Nicodemus: "I've looked over Ms. Latimer's plan in full, and though it seems sound…." He shrugs.
Xavier Sangria: "No plan survives first contact, sir. That's the first thing I teach my men, and I hold it applies even more here."
Nicodemus pulls out a pocket watch. "Apologizes, but I have to speak with the next person. Your concern is noted. I'll see you at the vote at Midnight."
Xavier Sangria: "Yes, sir."
Xavier Sangria gets into the elevator.
Obscurati: The marksmen rides down with you, as you see Livia riding upwards on an elevator while you descend.
Nicodemus: "Ms. Hatsfield. How are you tonight?"
Livia curtsies gracefully. "I'm… intrigued." She smiles. "I'm glad the talk about wanting to improve the world wasn't just talk."
Nicodemus: "It's a pleasure seeing all of you here and putting the names to the faces. I've heard reports about many of you, but… As for the plans, I figured it wasn't just up for Jierre, Varal, and myself to decide the course of the world. You all had a part to play."
Livia: "I appreciate that. Although…" She laughs, lightly. "I find myself wondering how many options there -truly- are."
Livia: "And, of course, where your loyalties lie, not that I'd presume so much as to ask. I'm sure we'll find out in time."
Nicodemus: "I'd point to some of the various stars, but we can't see any from here." He sighs. "Each star in the sky has a different trait we could use. The key is finding which combination works best. The major proposals are some of the better ones our minds have come up with."
Nicodemus: "I'm trying to make the world a better place. That's my major tie to here."
Livia grins. "Oh, I didn't mean 'of the countless possible worlds', I meant of the five we'd seen. Notable that you mentioned Jierre and Varal, given that their proposals are… well. Strike me as the only two bent towards that aim."
Nicodemus: "Macbannin has vision, I'll grant him that, though he's recent to his position. He's managed to come out on top as the representative for his faction. Ramona….you've spent time around her, have you not? What's your take on her?"
Livia makes a look of distaste. "We've never really seen eye to eye. She's power-hungry, she thinks the world- or at least a chunk of it- ought to have been hers."
Nicodemus: "Never more evident than in her Colossus proposal."
Livia: "…she's a hard worker, I'll give her that much. Always kept to the traditions, as long as I've known her, I can appreciate that."
Nicodemus: "Fair enough."
Livia: "But… she's grasping. Not for the world's sake, for her own sake."
Livia: "…suffice to say she hasn't got my vote."
Nicodemus nods.
Obscurati: The ghost councillor up here wanders over. "Sir? I need to talk to you about something…"
Gran Guiscard enters Leave the Nest. "If I'm the only one without wings around here I'm going to feel -very- left out."
Livia looks worried.
Nicodemus looks over. "Alright." He says back to you, "I'm afraid that's all the time I have for. Let the next person know they can come up, please?"
Livia: "Of course."
As he walks away, you hear a small metallic clink at your feet.
Livia glances down, surreptitiously.
Obscurati: Looking down, you see a simple iron pendant, that looks like it was crafted from a fisherman's hook.
Obscurati: Nobody's looking in your direction.
Livia frowns faintly, scoops it up.
Obscurati: As you head to the elevator to descend, you can't help but wonder…this looks like The Humble Hook you've heard Phyllis bring up before…
Livia examined it more closely- blinking a few times then -staring at it-, making for the elevator. And making sure she keeps track of it, because…
Obscurati: Kiov…you have to wait a couple minutes once you get to the top of the lighthouse, but he comes back over to the balcony. "Sorry to keep you waiting, Mr. Hetman. How are you doing?"
Kiov Hetman: "Worn."
Kiov Hetman: "It seems like everyone here has an agenda except me. You've gathered people with wildly different viewpoints to have them battle in the arena of debate. I feel dead-center."
Nicodemus: "I've heard you've raised a lot of questions tonight."
Kiov Hetman: "I'm an engineer that doesn't hew to ideology. I like to do good work. Most of the proposals your 'greatest minds' have proposed are nightmares when it comes to making something functional. Trying to rein them in with reality, with scale."
Kiov Hetman: "Because execution matters, not grandiose ideas. Any milksop can come up with ideas."
Kiov Hetman gesticulates. "You want to actually accomplish anything, you have to do your homework and THINK consequences through."
Nicodemus: "That's what some of the researchers have been looking into, of course. But you've also been looking at the long picture, it seems."
Obscurati: Gran: You don't get wings, but you do get Fly 6 while you're in there.
Kiov Hetman: "I ask the same kinds of questions I'd ask myself on any given project - otherwise this whole venture wouldn't even be possible."
Obscurati: The flock of birds launches off the isle below, and rise to follow your flight.
Nicodemus: "Has any in particular caught your fancy?"
Kiov Hetman: "I'm trying to decide between Miller's Pyre and the Panarchists. The former, mainly because it actually has some flexibility, and the latter because at the very least, I, personally, would come out a little more ahead. I'll admit to that."
Nicodemus takes a long drag on his cigarette, then nods. "Some wouldn't own up to that."
Kiov Hetman: "The whole political game, the whole .. feigning altruism in service of self-interest. I don't have the energy for that."
Kiov Hetman: "What you see is what you get with me."
Nicodemus: "Of course. Anything new on the murder investigation?"
Kiov Hetman: "Nothing directly. I perused the portraits, along with the others, staying in groups for safety as you suggested."
Kiov Hetman: "But I've been mulling on the possibilities."
Nicodemus: "Alright." He checks his pocket watch. "Sorry, but time's up. Try to enjoy the rest of the night."
Kiov Hetman: "I'll look more into it, if you'd like. Wasn't aware there was a directive."
Nicodemus: "If you like. I'm not sure how much else there is to learn. Your group came up with most of the info, actually."
Nicodemus: "The ritual wasn't something Vicemi or I knew about."
Obscurati: As you head back, the guard calls over the rest of your group-Ken, Gran, Oscan, and Erskine.
Kiov Hetman: "He may have been my employer, but as I said, I don't play the political game. I can't immediately discern any motive."
Kiov Hetman skedaddles.
Gran Guiscard reluctantly leaves. "But I'm coming back for the Bards, don't close it up yet."
Obscurati: Gran, you're up on the freight elevator first.
Nicodemus: "Good evening, Mr. Guiscard. How is tonight finding you?"
Gran Guiscard heads up, sans smoke or drink. Time to talk with the boss. He does straighten out his clothes.
Gran Guiscard: "Oh ho ho, it has been quite the evening. Finally, the grand plans laid bare, the major changes to the world and society alike."
Nicodemus: "That's one thing I've heard tonight from nearly everybody - the joy at finding out they've been working towards."
Gran Guiscard: "I could -hear- the cogs turn as I realize I was also but one of them- hard to not hear what goes on along the world when you deal with traveller-types, but to see it all in basically one place?"
Gran Guiscard smiles widely. "It's that feeling, the feeling of being part of something greater."
Nicodemus: "Something you take a lot of joy in?"
Gran Guiscard: "That's what most strive for.'
Gran Guiscard inhales a bit deeper.
Gran Guiscard: "Allllllllmost."
Gran Guiscard: "Because the other bit, well- the idea of affecting a glorious change."
Nicodemus: "Truly a remarkable one, no matter which plan goes forward."
Gran Guiscard: "In a way, yes. They're all plane-spanning wonders."
Gran Guiscard: "That one could dare call any of them 'lesser' is an affront to the grandiose nature of what I have witnessed tonight-"
Nicodemus: "Did you have a chance to see the portraits?"
Gran Guiscard grins again. "And yet, I do dare."
Gran Guiscard: "I have. Each one definitely differs in practice as opposed to the storyboard."
Nicodemus: "How so?"
Gran Guiscard: "Well- the Arboretum plot, talks about maximising nature's bounties and having to eventually pull back from certain places, growing into megacities and such-"
Gran Guiscard: "But they didn't mention the parts of trees where their bark is like steaks!"
Gran Guiscard: "The practicality is different from the overall view."
Gran Guiscard: "The Watchmakers, perfect counter-"
Nicodemus laughs. "That was certainly the expirment."
Gran Guiscard: "Effectively their portrait was a minute slapstick setup, to show that everything can and does go according to plan."
Gran Guiscard: "But that's not the -beauty- of the project, the grand vision, all of the cogs in motion."
Gran Guiscard: "Though I suspect- and judge, jury, and execute- that many others don't see the same light."
Gran Guiscard: "Each believes they are either above the machine or not part of it."
Nicodemus: "Likely not. The complete loss of free will scares most."
Gran Guiscard laughs. "If anything, I worry for their lack of vision, even though what they said- we will take everyone's free will for a thousand years to play this opera- is beyond most expectation."
Gran Guiscard: "Do you think the authors of the tale would see their legacy carried out over a millenia? Or would they dissipate to forgottenness?"
Gran Guiscard: "Seeing as how the Ghost Council largely seems to be heading it up, I gather they don't care either way."
Nicodemus: "Of course. Seeing as they're members of the Ghost Council, they would likely exist to see it." He takes a look at his pocket watch. "I apologize, but we'll have to wrap this up. I'm trying to speak with everyone before the voting tonight."
Gran Guiscard: "Right, right." He bows, slightly. "It's been a pleasure, as always."
Nidodemus: "Good night, Mr. Guiscard."
Obscurati: The guards bring up Oscan next.
Nicodemus: "Mr. Ligurio. How do you find this evening?"
Oscan saunters on in, but as soon as the guard is out of eyesight slumps a little and looks tired. "Can't complain too much on the whole, Boss."
Nicodemus: "Any further thoughts on our murder?"
Oscan: "My first guess would have been the Clergy, with as much shit as we've been doing in their back yard… but it looked like you caught their inside man at the gates."
Oscan: "Other than that… well, who knows. We've made a lot of enemies to get here. Maybe the fey council caught wind of the plan and how many involve axing the dreaming and are trying to stop that? No other major players immediately come to mind."
Nicodemus: "Ah, yes, Vitus Sigimund." He nods, taking a drag on his cigarette. "The fey? Possible. Especially if the Voice of Rot is somehow involved."
Oscan nods. "Not much we can do about it until we FIND someone to question though." Oscan idly pulls out his dagger and beings spinning and flipping it between his fingers.
Nicodemus: "You seem tired. A long trip here?"
Oscan: "Oh! Haha, maybe someone killed themself and became a ghost to slip past all the secutiy. wouldn't that be funny! … Ah. Not so much the trip as the proposals, if I'm being perfectly honest."
Oscan: "Most of them are pretty bad."
Nicodemus: "Oh? What did you find wrong with them?"
Oscan: "Well, going right down the list… The Watchmakers is a stopgag. It's a wonderful, thousand year stopgag, but as soon as the script ends we're basically the same stupid idiots and are bound to fuck it up spectacularly, if there's a single tihng I've learned from history."
Nicodemus nods, but lets you continue.
Oscan: "Jierre's plan is short sighted. It sounds good on paper, but it's just going to change the way people in power play the game, rather than leveling the playing field."
Oscan: "The Pyre is essentially making us no longer be humans. Which I suppose isn't the WORST possible thing, but we won't really be the same senteient beings with the power to make our own choises if it goes through."
Oscan: "I feel like I don't even need to spell out what's wrong with the Colossus plan, being that you employ people like me."
Oscan: "Imagine watching that one play out from the sidelines would make for a fun couple of years, though." Oscan shakes his head.
Nicodemus: "And the Arboretum?"
Oscan: "I can't believe I'm saying this, but McBannin's seems like the only good solution of the bunch. Which is amusing in its own right since he's not part of the upper crust as far as I can tell."
Nicodemus: "It was interesting seeing him come in, learn what was going on, and take lead of that faction, to be honest."
Oscan: "I mean it's got its own issues, but nothing that can't be overcome with a bit 'o hard work from the sound of it. But I mean, it's the only one that's actively trying to make the basic level of living better, and give us less reasons to kill one another."
Nicodemus: "Interesting reasoning." He takes a look at his pocket watch. "Sorry, but I need to wrap this up. I'll see you tonight at the vote."
Oscan: "Watch your back, yeah? No telling what tricks the infiltrator might have up their sleeve."
Nicodemus: "Indeed."
Obscurati: Afterwards, Ken is brought up the elevator.
Ken Don makes his way up to Nicodemus before smiling. "So, who have you pinned this down to that could have cast that ritual asides from myself? I consider myself neither dead nor very adept at hiding a second body as I obviously did not stab myself, so I do hope you've come up with something."
Nicodemus: "Mr. Don. You're straight to the point."
Ken Don: "I think everyone has something to lose from this if sabotage is involved."
Nicodemus: "Among those closest at hand, Mr. Macbannin and Ms. Latimer have the most knowledge of the Witches on Cauldron Hill, to be fair. I'll be speaking with them soon."
Nicodemus: "Otherwise, Ms. Hatsfield in your group and the other Risuri are the next most likely to have knowledge of the ritual or be working for the Voice of Rot, to be honest."
Ken Don: "Ah, you noticed that as well?"
Nicodemus: "Not that the statue is any sort of indicator necessarily, but it appears to have been here for some weeks ahead of time, as well."
Nicodemus: "Nobody but Zoltan seemed to have touched it since it was shipped here."
Ken Don: "This was certainly premediated well in advance, yes."
Nicodemus: "Which is even more worrisome. But enough about the murder. How has your evening been so far?"
Ken Don: "Far too busy for its own good. I plan to sit down until the vote. Speaking of, I believe we both know where we stand on this already, yes?"
Nicodemus: "We'll have to see how everyone votes. Speaking with people so far, it hasn't been anything close to unanimous."
Ken Don nods. "I imagine if you wanted to keep people united there may have to be some compromises and merging of coalitions after the preliminary vote."
Ken Don: "Having the winning method only garner less than a quarter is not very convincing."
Nicodemus: "5 options is a lot for people to choose amongst, yes. I imagine the discussions will be long and frequent after the vote."
Ken Don: "Is that all, then? I know a busy man when I see one."
Nicodemus: "Yes, quite. Thank you for your time. Enjoy the quiet until Midnight."
Obscurati: After you head back down, Erskine heads up for his turn, and afterwards all four of you are escorted back.
Ken Don nods before heading off. He takes his sweet time on the way back though may as well take note of the layout of the lighthouse on the way back. >.>
Obscurati: Yep. It's pretty empty down at the bottom, but there seems to be another layer 60 feet up, below the roof, which has a bunch of containers and the fuel pumps. Their sound is distinctive to you.
Ken Don should have time to go over there after the vote. He'll have been accounted for but too many people will still be focused on the results to be worried about the place.
Obscurati: Alright. Gran, with the Bards portrait, even after you step inside the small concert hall, you can tell just from your shoes clicking on the stage that it has perfect acoustics.
Obscurati: You find yourself casually desiring to sing, play an instrument, or otherwise perform.
Gran Guiscard: "Aahahahahaha! Okay." He begins one of The Gallant Monologues.
Obscurati: You find it easy to notice what is wrong with your performance and how you could make slow progress to improve your form.
Gran Guiscard: "Jeez. This sure is a way to make a man feel small."
Gran Guiscard: "…but also, just how much more transcendant I can be!"
Obscurati: Anything else you guys want to do before the vote in an hour, roughly?
[OOC] Gran Guiscard: I think I'm good for now
[OOC] Kiov Hetman: Probably make headway on the murder thing somehow but i'm tired and can't think of an actual action yet
Obscurati: Just as a rundown for the remaining portraits: Mortal Mind finds you completely unmoved by the religious iconography and music aside from technical details while inside it. Trial by Fire has creatures inside it immune to fire damage, and objects inside will not burn unless someone within line of sight wills it.
Obscurati: Walking on Sunshine lets you choose for your own personal gravity orientation at will, and objects float unless someone wills them to fall. You can intereact with the sunlight as if it was solid, and you can even grab it and adjust it mid-beam as if you were adjusting a hinged pole.
Obscurati: And Downward makes you feel as if you're always going downhill, no matter which way you walk. You can even swim through the waterfall, from the pool down below to the fountain up top, and feel like you're rushing down a river.

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