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48653 No. 48653
An ivory tree sways in the wind. The distant chime of crystal wings. A song, pining for a lost love. An inverted triangle made of needles. Feathers stained black. A cloudy night reflected on a lake. Liquid gold. A raging inferno, filled with screams. A hand outstretched, falling away.

Falling.

Falling!

CRACK

I see stars as my head impacts the ground. Groaning with pain, I try and get my bearings.

At the moment, I’m face down on a cold cobblestone floor. As I pick myself up, my vision swims, and I nearly brain myself once again on the side of a big, metal table. I seem to be in some sort of long, wedge shaped room. Torches line the walls, cracking, spitting, and casting distorted shadows. Also lining the walls are shelves and cabinets of unknown substances. The far side of the room is still too dark to see, though I can hear a faint rustling from over there. Lastly, ridged metal tables like the one I’m sitting on are scattered haphazardly about the room. They all look to be old and rusty, and about half have bodies with varying levels of mutilation on top of them. Seeing that, I shudder involuntarily.

“Oi! You a deader or have ya still got some breath about you?” A muffled voice from behind startles me.

“Huh? Who’s there?” I spin around, but I can’t see anyone.

“Over here.” Says the voice. I see a faint glow coming from under a cloth covering some rounded object on one of the shelves.

“Oh,” I say sheepishly, “there.”

“Come over and uncover me so we can talk like civilized people.” I do as I’m asked. Underneath the cloth is a glass orb.

“Hey! You’re not a guy, you’re just a ball!” I exclaim in surprise.

Really? I never would have guessed.” says the orb, flashing indignantly. “I’m inside the crystal ball, ye daft fool! Now, get to smashing so I can get free.”

The crystal ball doesn’t even crack when I drop it. Nor, for that matter, when I try throwing it at the wall.

Geez, you’re hopeless.” The orb sounds mildly annoyed. “Find like, I dunno, a hammer and chisel or something.”

I check the shelves and cabinets, but the only useful things I find are a few bandages and a scalpel that looks like it’s seen a lot of use over the years. I decide to keep them just in case.

“Hmm…” I notice that the orb glows only while it’s speaking. “Got anything useful on you?”

You know, I hadn’t really thought to check. I don’t know what I have on me. I don’t know a lot of things actually. Where I am for one. I can’t recall where I was before here either. I have no memory of being anywhere actually. I don’t even know who I am.

“Hey, listen! Fleshbag! I’m talking to you!” The orb interrupts my thoughts. “I asked if you had anything useful on you.”

I explain the memory problem I appear to be having. Maybe the orb can answer a few of my questions.

“I don’t know you, so I can’t answer that one much better than you can. The where is easy though. This here is the Mortuary. Someone probably found you somewhere, figured you were dead, and sold your body to the Dusties. Can’t say I blame ‘em, what with the way you look and all.”

“Dusties? And what do you mean with the way I look?” I’m confused and slightly offended.

“Dustmen. They’re loony death cultists who believe living is suffering. They think that if they avoid happiness and achieve some sort of Zen, they’ll cease to exist. You’d have to be pretty touched in the head to want to die permanently. Not to mention, they’re only slightly less boring than Modrons.”

“I guess that was sort of informative. But what about my other question? What did you mean when you said there was something wrong with how I looked?”

“Just look at you! Yer covered in dirt, grime, and blood! Ya have dozens of bad scars! Yer thin enough that I can barely tell that yer a girl. And most of all, there’s half a dozen spikes stuck through yer back. With that, it’s no surprise that folks are mistakin ya for a corpse.”

I start to check myself over. Judging from my scars, I’ve led a pretty rough life. The orb is right that I look too thin as well. Not to mention I’m cold, only wearing what amounts to a sheet with sleeves and a collar. I guess that was for funeral prep or something. I also am pretty grimy. I can’t even tell what my natural hair color is, it’s currently a filthy black. Lastly, the spikes. If I crane my neck, I can see them protruding from my back. They appear to be made of a pale blue crystal and there’s blood oozing from the wounds. I could probably remove one, maybe two, but I’m not sure if that’s a good idea.

I think I’ll…
[1] – try to remove a spike. My back might start hurting less and if I happen to need a weapon, a crystal javelin would be much better than just a rusty scalpel.
[2] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.

(Additionally, please decide whether or not to have voter controlled stats. Do note that they will not be the same as Dungeons and Dragons stat system and mechanics. For the most part, stats will just affect available dialogue options.)
[] I don’t mind voting on stats. Feel free to post them.
[] I dislike the presence of stats. I would prefer not to have them in this story.

***
So yeah, Planescape: Torment crossed with Touhou. I intend to try to update this DAILY if I get at least 6 or 7 votes per update.
I'm not entirely sure of everyone's opinions on stats, but they would greatly help me in quantifying what the protagonist can do, so that I may actually focus on bringing you updates with choices that could actually get picked.
Lastly, no prior Planescape experience is necessary. You'll learn as the protagonist does.
No. 48654
[2] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.
It's basic first aid (or common sense) that if you have a large object impaled in you, removing it will only cause you to bleed out. We leave the spikes in for now, and possibly bandage them securely in place if we can reach that far back.

With regard to the stats, while I would not mind voting on them, they do tend to bog down a story quite a bit. I believe the one time AWiY voted on Wizanon's gaining a level, it took up the better part of a single thread. However, if you keep it rules-light, or decide on most of the mechanics yourself and leave only the important parts up to us, it should be fine. Summarily,
[X] I don’t mind voting on stats, but try not to have too much superfluous voting. When in doubt, leave it out.
No. 48655
Can't vote untill I understand the seeting.

Won't understand the setting until the the protagonist does stuff.

It appears I am stuck in limbo.
No. 48656
IT'S

HAPPENING

[2] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.

[X] I don’t mind voting on stats. Feel free to post them.

I'm a consummate neckbeard, so I'm okay with this.
No. 48657
[1] – try to remove a spike. My back might start hurting less and if I happen to need a weapon, a crystal javelin would be much better than just a rusty scalpel.

[x] I don’t mind voting on stats. Feel free to post them.

We'll see whether this story is good or not.
No. 48658
[1] – try to remove a spike. My back might start hurting less and if I happen to need a weapon, a crystal javelin would be much better than just a rusty scalpel.

I'm not a Planescape follower, so I'll just stick to in-story reasoning instead of Planescape logic.

As for the stats, I'm indifferent, as long as the story remains understandable for one who hasn't heard of this verse.
No. 48659
>>48655
You can give http://www.pathguy.com/planes.htm a skim. Even if you don't care for this story, I thought it was an interesting read.
No. 48660
[x] – try to remove a spike. My back might start hurting less and if I happen to need a weapon, a crystal javelin would be much better than just a rusty scalpel.

[x] I dislike the presence of stats. I would prefer not to have them in this story.

Stats in general are a pretty stupid idea to have in a story. Every attempt to build a game out of a story here has failed so far. Unless you are somehow extraordinarily skilled as a writer, you'd best not include them.
No. 48661
>>48660
A Wizard Is You doesn't fail.
No. 48662
>>48661

A Wizard is You isn't trying to be a game, and neither is this one either, I imagine.

Gamist elements are like spice - they can add flavor if used correctly. Of course, not everyone will like it in the first place and if you use too much everyone will hate what you've made.
No. 48663
[X] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.
[X] I dislike the presence of stats. I would prefer not to have them in this story.

And don't you forget the most important thing.

[X] Update my journal.
No. 48664
[X] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.
[X] I don’t mind voting on stats. Feel free to post them.

I haven't yet read a story with stats. I'm interested to see how that goes.
No. 48665
[X] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.
[X] I dislike the presence of stats. I would prefer not to have them in this story.

But the stat thing is your call. It usually doesn't work all that great, but if you think you can pull it off, go for it.
No. 48667
Calling it for:
[2] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.
and
having stats.

Don't worry everyone, the stats will be non-invasive. I don't intend for it to turn into a clusterfuck of minmaxing either.

I'll post the stats momentarily and then get to work on the update.
No. 48668
Here are the stats I will use:

Strength- Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception- senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness

You start with a 6 in each stat. You get 60 points to allot between them as you will. No stat can exceed 18 at the start, and 10 is the human average.

Do try not to min-max too much.
No. 48669
>>48668
Maximize Wisdom and Charisma.

Really, this is important.
No. 48670
>>48668
Everything in WIS. Hopefully the writefriend will deliver an appropriate level of eloquency.
No. 48671
This is Planescape. Every mental attribute we Can Max, we Must. Then stick the rest in Charisma. After that, don't care.

Not Min Maxing, but Planescape with a Dumb protagonist is Boring. Smart Protagonist is Insanely Awesome.
No. 48672
File 13640889405.jpg - (221.50KB, 800x440, Like this but messier.jpg) [iqdb]
48672
[2] – leave them alone. It would probably be best to see an actual healer about them. Plus, I want to get out of here as soon as possible.

I don’t think I should mess with the spikes. Doesn’t removing an object from a wound cause it to bleed a whole lot? I mean, I have a few bandages and all, but I can’t exactly properly apply them to my back. In the mean time, I’ll just have to avoid bumping into things until I can find a healer.

“Alright Orb, how are we supposed to get out of here?” I ask.

“It’s simple, really.” says the orb, “Get the key from one of those zombies. From there, we can probably just sneak out the front door.”

“Z-Zombies?” I stammer out. Somehow, stealing from the walking dead doesn’t seem like a very good idea. I don’t know if I can take them on, especially if they outnumber me.

“Relax kid; they aren’t the face eating, hungry dead kind of zombie. They’ll only attack you in a group if ordered to. If you start a fight with one, it will defend itself, but the others will ignore you.” The orb allays my fears a little with that. I’m still a little nervous though.

I take the orb with me over to the side of the room that the zombies are on. Without getting too close, I check each zombie to see which has the key. After five somewhat decayed zombies, I manage to locate the key.

The zombie clutching the key has obviously seen better days. The skin hangs loosely off of its face and it has a fist sized hole through its chest. The place where the hole passes through its spine is crudely patched with a heavily rusted metal rod. The zombie is gripping a screw-shaped key tightly. It stares straight ahead with a blank look, not even noticing me.

How should I proceed?

[1] – (STR) Try to tear out the metal rod. That will drop the zombie and make it easy to finish off.
[2] – (DEX) Cut its tendons. It can’t attack me if it can’t move.
[3] – (INT) Search the cabinets again. I can probably find a chemical to loosen its grip.
[4] – (WIS) Try to get the zombie to open the door.
[5] - (SPD) Try to quickly snatch the key from the zombie's grasp.
[6] – Cut the key from its hand with the scalpel.
[7] – Ask the orb for advice.

***
Here's how the stats will work. They will be listed beside relevant options. You will not know the number that the stat in question must meet or exceed to succeed at the action, but should be able to vaguely gauge the odds based on the number you have. Success at a stat action will ALWAYS get you better results than a non-stat action. There are also secret options which will not appear unless you have the relevant stats.

>>48670
>>48669
If you max Wisdom (in true Planescape: Torment fashion) you will have 48 points remaining to spend.
Then max Charisma brings you down to 36 points.
At 36 points to spend among 8 stats, you can go full min-max on three more stats, or raise all of the remaining 8 to 10 and have 4 points left over to spend as you wish.

Everyone please note that this build is just one suggestion. Voting on stats will last until there is a general consensus or the protagonist leaves the mortuary, whichever comes first.
No. 48673
[4] – (WIS) Try to get the zombie to open the door.

Let us test our wisdom, shall we?
No. 48674
Yeah, okay, sorry for that completely unhelpful thing I just said. Instead of me saying Do This, I'm gonna actually Stat out this character, for a Thinker build.

Strength- [14]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [16]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- [18]knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [18]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception-[18]senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [14]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [14]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [14]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [18]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma-[16]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness

Here. How's this look? Mental Build focus, we're Really rolling when it comes to the thinker. And since All of our stats are above ten, we Aren't Human. But this is Touhou, so you all knew that already.
No. 48675
Er, GM? You said we had a 6 in each stat, and 60 points to spend. Am I mistaken, or what?
No. 48676
>>48675
Stats start at 6, 60 points to spend, 10 stats to spend them on. Unless I utterly fail at math, that means all could be raised to 12 or 5 could be raised to 18.
>>48674
Yeah, that math is way off.
No. 48677
GM. I'm the guy who stated out the character sheet just now. Question. You said we had 6 points already in each stat, and 60 points to spend. Going by those numbers, the Character sheet I put up Should be valid.

Is it, or am I mistaken somehow?
No. 48678
>>48676

Uh, GM? 6 points in each stat, 10 stats, 60 points to spend?

I.... Ahh.... Crap. I just completely failed at math forever. I divided 60 by 10 and got 10. How?

Uh. Sorry. Gimme a sec and lemme fix that stat sheet. Oh Man, I failed at Math.
No. 48679
>>48677
Counting the starting 6s, there should be a total of 120.

Lets look at your total:
14 (14)
16 (30)
18 (48)
18 (66)
18 (84)
14 (98)
14 (112)
14 (124)
18 (142)
16 (158)

It's definitely wrong.
No. 48680
Okay. I failed at math forever just now, but Still! This time, I Definately won't fail! So. Imma put up two builds. First is the Generalist, good at a lot, master of nothing. Next is the Mentalist, filled with Mind stuff.

Generalist Build

Strength- [12]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [12]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence-[12] knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [12]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception- [12]senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [12]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [12]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [12]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [12]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- [12]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness


Mentalist Build

Strength- [10]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [10]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- [18]knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [10]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception-[10] senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [10]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [10]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [10]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [10]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- [18]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness

Right, okay, I think I got my math right this time. GM, how's it look?
No. 48681
>>48680
Still have 4 left to spend on the 2nd one.
No. 48682
Ah, also, my vote is for us to

[7] – Ask the orb for advice.

Because I love that Orb, I really do. Bugging it for advice is an Awesome thing.
No. 48683
Man, my math skills are failing me hardcore. Still, I'm personally voting for the

[X] Generalist build.

Because while Min Maxing is fun, I have to admit that Planescape is a game where, to get the Perfect ending in the Original game, all you need to do is remember the Adventurers proverb, and follow it religiously.

Pillage, Then Burn.

I'm guessing that this games going to diverge Wildly from the game, isn't it? This Will be an awesome game, methinks.
No. 48684
Mentalist Build

Strength- [10]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [10]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- [18]knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [14]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception-[10] senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [10]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [10]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [10]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [10]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- [18]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness

Okay, reworked the Mentalist build. How's it look now, GM?
No. 48685
>>48683
Planescape actually rewarded you for maxing your mental stats at the expense of the others. Namely WISDOM being THE GOD STAT.

The plot will diverge quite a bit. I hope it's a fun ride for all involved.

>>48684
Your math is good now.
No. 48686
Wisdom was the God Stat? Oh right. Forgot that. Huh. One sec, new Mentalist build, incoming.

Mentalist Build

Strength- [18]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [10]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- [18]knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [18]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception-[10] senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [10]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [10]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [10]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [10]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- [16]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness

Mentalist BuildV2

Where Wisdom really Is the God Stat. How's this look?
No. 48687
We, crap. That Strength is supposed to be 8, not 18.

And I have no idea how to edit posts. Awesome.
No. 48688
[x] Mentalist V2. We're playing Planescape. Dat Wis needs to be /through the roof!/

Also, since this is Touhou, and if Danmaku is still a thing, then having a ton of Wisdom and other mental stats is key to being able to make awesome spellcards.
No. 48694
These are supposed to be our starting stats. I don't think our min/max philosophy should come into play yet.

Thus, I suggest this build:

Strength- [12]
Life- [10]
Intelligence- [12]
Wisdom- [14]
Perception-[10]
Speed- [14]
Agility- [12]
Dexterity- [12]
Will- [12]
Charisma- [12]

Specialized, yet decidedly above human.

[5] - (SPD) Try to quickly snatch the key from the zombie's grasp.
-[X] Be sure to pull with enough force to break fingers, and jump back to your starting distance.
No. 48698
Strength- [6]
Life- [12]
Intelligence- [18]
Wisdom- [18]
Perception-[10]
Speed- [10]
Agility- [10]
Dexterity- [6]
Will- [14]
Charisma-[16]
No. 48700
Since I haven't played Planescape, I'll refrain from voting the stats and leave it to the experts here. However, since we're supposedly going to Gensokyo, the land of Bullet Hell, shouldn't we spend at least some points at Perception and Agility too? You know, to be able to survive at least the average Spell Card.
No. 48702
Wall of text incoming!

Lemme break the stats down into their two "halves": physical stats and mental stats.

STR 8
DEX 8
LIF 10
SPD 13
AGI 13

We won't be setting any weightlifting records, but at least won't be laid low by a stiff breeze. Instead, we are notably slippery, able to react to a threat and flee from it better than most. Unlike most "high DEX" stereotypes (in other systems) this capability does not make us simultaneously capable of threading a needle held in someone else's hands, but at least we can manage it at all... just... give us a minute...

CHA 6
PER 13
WIL 13
INT 18
WIS 18

Our relative mediocrity in the physical department is rewarded here. Our notable flaw is that we are abrasive and blunt, relying on the value of what we say and inherent strength of our arguments instead of charming mannerisms to win people over. And our arguments will be strong, with the (figuratively) biggest head on our shoulders we can manage, our skills at calculation and deduction as high as they can be. As an added bonus, our senses and tenacity are somewhat above average.

tl;dr: We are relatively average physically, trading a bit of raw strength for increased agility and speed. Mentally, we are the "brains behind the throne" - as far from silver tongued as possible, but with a mind that almost none can surpass.

STR 8
LIF 10
INT 18
WIS 18
PER 13
SPD 13
AGI 13
DEX 8
WIL 13
CHA 6

"But anon, why are we dumping Charisma? I want to have friends!"

Let me say now that low charisma does not mean that we are mean, unsociable, surly, or callous. When a little girl hugs our knees and cries, we still care - it just means we can't/won't be comforting her by bouncing her on our knee and assuring her it's going to be alright. Instead, we'll ask her what's wrong and then go Problem Solving, treating the cause, not the symptom.

And we will, because being Good in the world of Planescape is hard, but rewarding. I will almost certainly drop this if we go full Evil.

I've really, really wanted to see the Low Charisma Nice Guy written. When - not if - we attract a band of companions, it will be not because they found us pleasant or inspiring, but because we honestly care for them - and with brains like ours, came to help them greatly in some way or the other.
No. 48703
Where's the 'updating my journal' sound every 10 seconds after talking to... eh... everyone?

Also, max WIS and INT first, period. Thinking is... Rewarding in most situation in Torment. And flashy. Although ripping someone's arm for pickpocketing you with exceptional STR certainly amusing.

Kind of sad that most people think Torment=Planescape, not all the Planescape module covered by Torment only, since it's HUGE.
No. 48704
>>48702

20% weaker than a regular human means we ARE running the risk of being laid low by a stiff breeze. 40% less charismatic than a normal human is pretty much hikikomori level. I don't like your build at all, sir.
No. 48705
[5] - (SPD) Try to quickly snatch the key from the zombie's grasp.

My vote goes for the updated mentalist build. I don't know the system but the arguments are compelling.
No. 48706
Just like what happened to Fallout: Gensokyo, I'm replaying Planescape right now. So far I escaped, gathered the warior mage, run directly into the old witch and became a wizard just after hitting level 6 with the fighter (for bonus HP)

I hope you're happy.
No. 48710
At the moment, the action vote is going for:
[5] - (SPD) Try to quickly snatch the key from the zombie's grasp.

That half of the vote is now called, though it hasn't recieved as many votes as there have been stat votes. Please don't forget to vote on the actual updates.

On the stat side of things, mentalist v2 is currently leading with two votes. (or 3, it isn't really clear how many voters there are)
That isn't enough to be a majority, so voting on stats will be open another two or three days at least.

Now, to adress voter comments:
>>48688
>>48700
Danmaku is still a thing. Gensokyo however, is not. This story will take place in the Planescape setting.

>>48703
Updating my Journal.
(PRIMARY)
- Get the key from the zombie somehow.
- Escape the mortuary.
(SECONDARY)
- Find some way to free the orb.

The entirety of the Planescape setting is going to be open for exploration.

>>48702
Nice job noticing the sort of Physical/Mental split. The mechanics of the system I'm using are a sort of universal homebrew system with leanings toward multiversal campaigns. Planescape certainly fits well in that regard.
One thing I like about having 10 stats to DnD's 6 is that it results in no single stat being inherently best. Dexterity in DnD was too all-encompassing, to the point of leaving strength comparatively pathetic.
Another advantage of this system is that just about any action could be attempted with at least two different stats. The result is more or less the same, but the way you go about it is vastly different. For example:
[x] - (AGI) Sneak past the guards.
means moving quietly and hiding in the shadows.
[x] - (INT) Sneak past the guards.
means figuring out patrol routes and exploiting the resulting blind-spots.
[x] - (STR) Sneak past the guards.
would be tapping a guard on the shoulder and then throwing a haymaker at him.

Oh, and don't worry about going full evil. Most anons don't seem to have the stomach for the level of wanton, puppy-kicking cruelty that usually entails in Planescape: Torment.

>>48706
It's certainly a classic. Of course I'm happy.
No. 48713
Will high Charisma mean that we'll be wooing Touhous left and right?

If so, then I'll vote for low Charisma.
No. 48715
File 136417020892.jpg - (14.09KB, 360x360, all thumbs.jpg) [iqdb]
48715
[5] - (SPD) Try to quickly snatch the key from the zombie's grasp.

I figure that I could probably yank the key free from the zombie’s grasp if I’m quick about it. Its grip doesn’t seem too strong; if worst comes to worst, I can get a fair number of obstacles between it and me.

Readying my hand, I prepare to strike. I sure hope this works.

My hand strikes with the speed of… well not quite the speed of a viper, that’s for sure. But it’s enough to liberate the key from the zombie’s grasp with a wet tearing sound.

I’m now holding the key. And almost a handful of fingers. Ugh.

The zombie lets out a moan and starts to shamble toward me. Well, crap.

I throw the severed fingers back at it and retreat toward the door, zigzagging between tables in an attempt to throw the zombie off. It works better than expected, though not as well as I would like. The zombie’s leg catches on the corner of a table and it tumbles to the ground. Despite this, it continues trying to crawl toward me, dragging itself forward with what remains of its hands.

“Hey! Aren’t ye forgetting someone?” calls a voice.

I now realize that I left the Orb on one of the tables to have my hands free for key snatching. A table that is now on the other side of a rather annoyed zombie. For a moment, I consider leaving the Orb where it is. If that zombie grabs at me again, I’m not sure I could evade it. Well, no time to stop and weigh my options while being pursued. Besides, the Orb is my ticket out of here.

I quickly double back to get the orb. Feigning left around the table, I instead go right, successfully tricking the zombie. I awkwardly grab the Orb from its resting place. It’s a bit too big to get a grip on with only one hand, so I have to use both. The key digs painfully into my skin, trapped between my hand and the Orb.

Getting back to the door proves no more difficult than getting the Orb. The zombie is stupid enough to fall for the same trick twice even.

At the door, I try to hold the Orb under one arm while I fit the key in the lock. Due to its screw shape, it takes more turns than reasonable to unlock the door. Once I’m through, I make a point of locking the door again, so I don’t have to deal with the zombie anymore.

Once I’m through with that, I collapse against the wall beside the door. I really need to catch my breath.

“Well, I gotta hand it to ya kid, ya sure can run away. Why, I imagine that’s how ya got them spikes in ye back.”

“Oh, stow it Orb!” I’m too busy trying to get my heart rate under control to deliver a proper rebuttal. Still, it did give me something to think about. Who would want me dead? I should definitely get some answers after we get out of here.

(UPDATED MY JOURNAL: - Find out who tried to kill me.)

“Hey! Don’t call me orb, or ball, or whatever! That hurts! I mean, I’m tryin to lose weight, I swear! It’s been who knows how many years since I ate. And besides, I’m not the orb. At least call me Ghost, or Spirit. Something like that would be much more accurate!”

Oh? Did I strike a nerve?” I say, feeling a smirk form on my lips. Now that I have a way of getting back at the orb for its commentary, I’m not very inclined to give it up.

“Don’t think yer so great! I bet you don’t even have a plan to get us outta here!”

I guess I do need a plan.

[1] – (STR) I could always try fighting my way out.
[2] – (INT) There’s bound to be a back exit.
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…
[4] – (AGI) The zombies don’t notice me unless I attack them. If I keep to the shadows, I’ll be practically invisible.
[5] – (CHA) I could always, you know, try asking nicely.
[6] – Wander around some. I can come up with a plan while exploring.
[7] – I’ve got nothing. What’s your big escape plan?

And vote on what to call the orb.
[x] – I’ll stick with Orb. It’s simple enough and has the added benefit of pissing it off.
[x] – Maybe if I call it Spirit, it’ll whine less. The name is fairly catchy too.
[x] – Nah, I think I’ll go with a nickname. How about…

***
Not terribly much to say here. Just uh... keep voting and stuff.
No. 48718
File 136418298530.jpg - (14.18KB, 132x150, why.jpg) [iqdb]
48718
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…

There is something humorous about this.

[x] – Nah, I think I’ll go with a nickname. How about…
-[x] Bob.

yes i am unoriginal

>>48704

>40% less charismatic than a normal human is pretty much hikikomori level.
>hikikomori: literally "pulling inward, being confined", i.e., "acute social withdrawal")
>low charisma does not mean that we are... unsociable

Did I write a wall explaining what low charisma actually means for nothing?
No. 48719
>48688 here. Still voting for either of the more mental builds!

Also--
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…

As an example of a low charisma, highly intelligent person who still gets on well with those close to them, look at Satori! That's an extreme case, maybe, but still.
No. 48720
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…
[x] Phantom

Just because I just saw that Jew Superhero movie
No. 48724
[4] – (AGI) The zombies don’t notice me unless I attack them. If I keep to the shadows, I’ll be practically invisible.

[x] – Nah, I think I’ll go with a nickname. How about…
-[x] Rob.

Rob sounds nice. (Having fun with a pseudo annagram)
No. 48726
I've already voted on what to do, but I seem to have missed a vote on our orb!

There's only one thing to name the orb.

[x] Murray, the Demonic Talking Skull! (Orb)

Failing that, [x] Rob is fine.
No. 48727
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…
Not like we have to try too hard at that with the big spikes in our back.

Also, nobody thought of the obvious nickname
[X] brO
yet?
No. 48730
File 136423261043.jpg - (105.94KB, 1440x900, Brolaf.jpg) [iqdb]
48730
>>48718 here. Changing vote of Orb name from Bob to:
-[X] brO
No. 48733
[5] – (CHA) I could always, you know, try asking nicely.
As for the Orbs name, Rob works for me.
No. 48734
Alright, the vote is now called for:
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…
and
[x] – Nah, I think I’ll go with a nickname. How about…
-[x] Rob.

The next vote might well be the last one you can vote for stats on. At the moment, the vote is going for Mentalist v2, which is:
>>48686
Strength- [8]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [10]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- [18]knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [18]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception-[10] senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [10]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [10]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [10]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [10]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- [16]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness

If you don't like this build, please vote on another. Honestly, I can work with just about anything.
No. 48737
[x] mentalist v2 but with life and strength swapped.

Assuming we have the same "curse" as the nameless one we don't have to worry about running out of HP too much, so investing in STR seems more prudent.
No. 48738
[x] mentalist v2 but with life and strength swapped.

Because if we Do have Immortality, Planescape variant or Fairy Variant, then Strength is more important than Life.
No. 48739
[x] mentalist v2

Works for me.
No. 48742
File 136428673954.jpg - (393.03KB, 1200x1600, a cunning disguise.jpg) [iqdb]
48742
[3] – (WIS) Perhaps if I could disguise myself as a zombie…
and
[x] – Nah, I think I’ll go with a nickname. How about…
-[x] Rob.


I think on it for a bit. As it stands, I can’t just walk around without fear of alerting the guards. I don’t exactly trust my stealth skills either; not with these spikes sticking out of my back anyway. No, what I need is a disguise…

“Nuthin then? How disappointing.” The Orb interrupts my thoughts.

“Hey! I have a plan! I just have to disguise myself as a…” I see one of the zombies shuffling from table to table, busying itself doing something with the bodies and inspiration hits me. “A zombie! Nobody will pay much attention to one zombie out of the horde. It’ll be perfect!”

Almost a full minute passes in silence. I feel as though the Orb is staring at me, though I can see it doesn’t have eyes.

“What? Is that a problem?” I ask innocently.

The Orb finally says something, or tries to at least. “Pfhahahahaha! Oh wow! That’s great! Really too much!” It can barely get its words out between peals of laughter.

I respond by scowling at the Orb. It only laughs harder.

“By the Lady’s tits, yer serious aren’t ye? This is just…” at this point, the laughter turns to excitement and glee. “I’ve met Chaosmen less crazy than you, kid! We are going ta have lots of fun together! I love this plan!”

With the Orb’s bemused commentary, I set about gathering the things I’ll need for a proper zombie disguise. First, I haphazardly wrap myself in bandages. At the very least, that should substitute for the large chunks of flesh that most of the zombies seem to be missing. Next, I suppose I ought to smell like a zombie. This won’t be pleasant.

As I grab a bottle of formaldehyde, the Orb speaks up. “Ya know that stuff’s toxic, right?”

“Yes, I know that.” It’s not as though I’m just going to upend the bottle over my head. I mean, if I ingest any of it or get it in my wounds, then I’ll probably die horribly.

“And yer still gonna use it?” the Orb seems about to protest, “Ya know, I don’t think ye thought this through that well.”

“Wow Rob, I didn’t know you cared.” I respond, discreetly pouring formaldehyde on a rag.

“Well, yer my ticket outta here, so… Wait, Rob?”

“Don’t you like it? It seems like a good enough name as any.” I dab the rag on some of my more heavily bandaged portions.

“Well, I guess it’ll do. I haven’t been addressed by a name in centuries. Not since I ended up like this anyway…” Rob continues on a tangent and I stop paying attention. It would seem my deflection was successful though. I now smell like a proper zombie. If I can keep from retching, I should be pretty convincing.

I finish off my disguise by gathering up assorted linens from the bodies throughout the room. After all, nobody is likely to be surprised by a zombie with a task and it makes sense for the laundry zombie to be wandering around. Plus, I can hide Rob in the pile if it stays quiet.

“Time to go Rob. Be quiet so I can smuggle you out with the laundry.”

“Smuggle me out with the laundry? First ye decide to dress up as a zombie and now this cliché?” I wait for the inevitable tirade if complaints. “Hell yes I want to be smuggled out in the laundry! This plan is so crazy it has to work!”

Well that’s not what I was expecting. I stow Rob in the middle of the pile and set out through the building, trying my best to imitate a zombie-like gait.

As I travel through the building, I notice that it’s circular, with a large empty space in the center. There, a zombie operated pulley system seems designed to transport goods between floors. It’s pretty clever really. But I should focus on getting out of here rather than looking around.

I travel through several rooms, undisturbed by the undead and the people I assume to be Dustmen. It seems that Rob was right about them. They do look like a rather morose lot. They don’t wear any bright colors or anything.

I pass through an archway between rooms and nearly collide headfirst with a zombie. Paying it no heed, I move to simply pass it by. I get about halfway across the room when I hear an accusatory “Hey! You no zombie!”

Try not to panic! Just remain calm and everything will be alright.

I feel someone grab me by the shoulder.

PANIC!!!!

I throw myself forward, trying to get free. All I manage to do is topple my assailant on top of me. There’s a crunching sound and I suddenly feel very cold. My vision starts to blur. I can’t breathe…

“Quit being so melodramatic kid. Ya just got the wind knocked out of you. Her on the other hand…” Huh, I guess I landed on Rob. I do think one of those spikes got driven deeper though. “Now, do ya mind getting off me?”

“Hey, whoever grabbed me, if you aren’t dead, could you please get off?”

“Can’t. Stuck.” Says the person. It’s a woman slurring her words as if drunk.

Several minutes of struggling later, I’m free. The woman is the zombie that I nearly collided with on the way into this room. Well, I’m not sure exactly what she is. She talked, so she can’t be a zombie. And yet, she is quite clearly dead. She looks to be stitched together from several bodies, not to mention she now has three bloodless, gaping holes in her chest from my spikes.
She tilts her head and asks “Why you dress like zombie?”

“I was mistaken for dead. I’m trying to get out of here.” May as well be honest. “What about you?”

“I zombie.”

Really now?” says Rob.

“Brains?” says the woman. Rob snorts and I roll my eyes.

“You’ve already blown your cover.” I say, shaking my head.

“Seek rot. Miss shun.” she replies. “No say more.”

“Any chance you could point me to the exit?”

“Ground floor. Two exits. Front lock. Guard have key.” She gestures to a staircase near the large central pit.

“And the other?”

“Seek rot. Port all. Need dry fin gore.” She points to her other hand.

“Where can I get one of those?” I really need to get out of here.

“Have one. But. No give.” She grips one of her pockets. “Third floor.”

“And the portal?” If I’m going to be sneaking around looking for a dried finger, I had better know where the portal is first.

“Know when see.” She shrugs. Not terribly helpful, that.

“She probably doesn’t know where it is.” Says Rob, “This is why ye don’t make zombies intelligent. Their brains rot and they get stupid if you don’t take the proper precautions. I bet it’s because her regeneration charm is faded.”

“What’s your name, zombie girl?” I ask, trying to be polite.

“Yo she kah. Me yah ko.” She gestures to herself.

Hmm…

(X) – (Ask Yoshika a question.)
(X) – (Ask Rob a question.)

[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm.
[2] – (WIS) Advise Yoshika on her zombie technique in exchange for the finger.
[3] – (AGI) Retrieve a finger from the third floor.
[4] – (AGI/DEX) Steal a key and escape through the front door.
[5] – (DEX) Distract Yoshika and steal the finger from her pocket.
[6] – (CHA) Perhaps we can make a deal…
[7] – (CHA) Threaten to turn Yoshika in unless she helps you escape.

***
When (X) options show up, they act as free Q&A sessions with the character in question. You can ask them anything you chose, though it will affect the character's disposition. In this case, Yoshika is impossible to anger, but Rob is not. Generally, you just have to avoid going full retard. High Wisdom is useful in that regard.

Mentalist v2 is the definite build now. The only question is whether to have 8 Strength or 8 Life. Both have their advantages, so choose wisely. This will be the last chance to vote on it.

Today's update took far longer than it should have. I was oddly tired and had some stuff to do. Tomorrow should be better though.
No. 48747
Do we get full warnings for going full retard depending on our WIS? Like that time I was about to tell the guys who worship death that I was inmortal? (I did it anyway because Lawful is Good)

[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm.
Ima helpin'!
No. 48748
>>48747
>Like that time I was about to tell the guys who worship death that I was inmortal?

Oh, that. Well, I also did it and I didn't see anything wrong with that. Hell, they took pity on you for that.
No. 48750
>>48748
Well he kind of kicked me out of the group. I didn't care, I already had the exp.
No. 48758
[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm.

Experimenting with the system, and trying to make friends.
No. 48759
[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm
(x)- Yoshika- "Why are you here?"
--"Who sent you?"
--"What do you know of this place?"
(x) - Rob- "Hey, anything about what's outside of this place?"
-- "Who's that Lady you mentioned before, your goddess? A master?"
No. 48760
Six pale blue spikes. (hints of) an immortal protagonist. Female.

We wouldn't happen to be Cirno, would we?

[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm
(x)- Yoshika- "Why are you here?"
--"Who sent you?"
--"What do you know of this place?"
(x) - Rob- "Hey, anything about what's outside of this place?"
-- "Who's that Lady you mentioned before, your goddess? A master?"

[x]Strength dominant mentalist v2.
No. 48763
Voting will be open another three hours.

>>48747
The protagonist will note when things are a Bad Idea, but you can vote to do them anyway.

>>48760
Maybe. Or maybe Cirno tried to kill you.

Oh, and before I forget, no need to vote for questions more than once. They will be included automatically if someone votes for them.
No. 48765
>>48760

>They appear to be made of a pale blue crystal and there’s blood oozing from the wounds.

If they're wings someones shoved them in hard.
No. 48768
Called for:
[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm
(x)- Yoshika- "Why are you here?"
--"Who sent you?"
--"What do you know of this place?"
(x) - Rob- "Hey, anything about what's outside of this place?"
-- "Who's that Lady you mentioned before, your goddess? A master?"

Final build is:
Strength- [8]Physical force exerted, carrying capacity, thrown and power type weapon effectiveness

Life- [10]resilience, health, natural healing rate

Intelligence- [18]knowledge, logic, problem solving, and learning ability

Wisdom- [18]creativity, unconventional thought, philosophy, empathy

Perception-[10] senses (both standard and abstract), accuracy, skill at dimensional travel

Speed- [10]swiftness, reaction time, rate of doing anything

Agility- [10]athleticism, dodging ability, stealth

Dexterity- [10]fine motor function, precision, finesse weapon effectiveness

Will- [10]mental resilience, self control, "stubbornness"

Charisma- [16]making an impression, diplomacy, persuasiveness
No. 48779
File 136437811589.jpg - (840.46KB, 926x1057, Grateful Dead.jpg) [iqdb]
48779
[1] – (INT) Try to fix Yoshika’s regeneration charm
(x)- Yoshika- "Why are you here?"
--"Who sent you?"
--"What do you know of this place?"
(x) - Rob- "Hey, anything about what's outside of this place?"
-- "Who's that Lady you mentioned before, your goddess? A master?"

“Say Rob, if we were to fix that regeneration charm of hers, would she be more helpful?” At this point, I need to know everything I can to get out of here. Being owed a favor wouldn’t hurt.

“The lass would talk properly at least.” Rob replies. “But I doubt ye know enough about magic to fix it.”

“Which is why you’re helping.”

“Oh alright. I guess I can help. First, grab that paper tag stuck to her face. That’s the charm.”

I hadn’t been paying too close of attention to Yoshika’s face. Her knife-like teeth are…unsettling. I take the charm and Yoshika promptly collapses.

“Uh… is that supposed to happen?” It looks like I just killed her. Or re-killed her.

“She’ll be fine. Should reanimate when ye stick the charm back on.” Rob decides to be reassuring for once. “What yer gonna hafta do is redraw the symbols…”

Rob walks me through the process. Drawing a complex pattern based purely on verbal instructions proves more difficult than I had anticipated. It doesn’t help that I’m drawing with my blood. Soon, the floor is covered in flawed symbols.

“Wrong again! Yer getting the angles all wrong!” Rob’s critiques certainly aren’t helping me focus. “It has ta flow naturally.”

Flow naturally… I take a deep breath, close my eyes, and begin to trace the pattern that has engraved itself in my mind. I can almost feel an invisible hand guiding my own through the motions.

I open my eyes. I’ve done it! I actually managed to draw the symbol! Now, if I can just copy it to the charm…

“How’s that Rob? Pretty good huh?” I’m rather proud of my handiwork.

“It’s finger-paintin’ kid. Don’t let that empty ’ead of yours balloon up with an ego.” Rob just had to go and ruin my mood.

Changing the subject to avoid having my pride wounded further, I ask “So what’s outside of here anyway?”

“Why, Sigil of course! Ye should at least know that much.”

“Sigil?” Great, more symbols.

“The city at the center of the Planes! Of course, how a ring floating atop an infinitely tall spire can be at the center of anything raises some questions. Anyway, you’ll never find a more wretched hive o’ scum and villainy than Sigil. Why, the area outside here is even called the Hive, full of the lowest of the low. Well, I guess Curst is worse. Any city in the Lower Planes really… Though they aren’t half as fun and flavorful in their debauchery. Then they’ve got the Blood War goin’ on. That’s no fun. Nobody’s winnin’.” Rob sure does like to talk…

“Uh, Rob? You were supposed to be telling me about Sigil. I don’e even know what half of those terms mean.”

“Right. Well, Sigil has a bunch of factions vying for control. Other than the Dusties, there’s a bunch more. It takes a while to explain them all, so I’ll hold off on it. The factions have skirmishes from time to time, but the Lady puts a stop to any attempt at all out war.”

“You mentioned ‘The Lady’ before. Who is she? Your master or goddess?”

“WHAT? NO WAY! Nobody worships the Lady of Pain. The types what go around doin’ that end up mazed or torn limb from limb. Ye’d be lucky if what’s left could be caught in a strainer.” Rob actually seems distressed for once.

“So why does she kill worshipers?” Note to self: do not piss off the Lady of Pain.

“Belief shapes everything out here in the planes. If enough people started worshiping her, she might well become a god.”

“And that’s bad?” Being a god probably carries a lot of perks.

“It’d be a few steps down in power! The Lady practically eats gods for breakfast! Gods can’t enter Sigil and she’s the reason why! You’d be hard pressed to find anyone in the same league of power.”

I can’t even imagine how powerful someone like that must be. The idea is almost a tangible pressure on my throat. “Night terrors aside, is this charm done?”

“Only about a third.” Rob notices me gritting my teeth. “Don’t be gettin’ mad now, that’s as good as it’s gonna get.”

“What do you mean?”

“There’s a whole cocktail of divine and druidic spells that need be cast while yer inscribin’ em. Now, you don’t seem the type ta know any of those and I myself don’t even have hands. So we’re stuck. Luckily, just the arcane bit should last a week or two pullin’ the weight all by its lonesome.”

I stick the charm on Yoshika’s face. She moans incoherently, but otherwise does nothing.

“Give it a moment.” Says Rob. “Fixin’ a brain takes time and all. What I don’t get though is the charm. The master cares enough to keep her mind and body mostly intact, but not enough to Raise her? If it’s about control, Dominate is an easy enough spell. Hell, even makin’ her a lich would be easier than stichin’ three incompatible spell systems together. Maybe it’s a proof of concept thing. This necromancer must be a very interesting sort indeed.

“Sorry, what? I didn’t quite catch that.”

“Just thinking out loud. I’m curious what this gal’s master is like.”

At this point, Yoshika sits up and yawns.

“Hey, you alright?” I ask. “I think we fixed your charm.”

“Think?” she says. Her voice is much more aware than it was before. “I can think! Oh, thankyouthankyouTHANKYOU!” She propels herself at me in an effort to give me a hug.

Please try to keep your voice down.” CRUNCH “Careful with the spikes!” I say, my knees suddenly weak.

“Sorrysorrysorry.” Wow she talks fast. “I’m just so grateful I… I know! I’ll give you this!” She hands me the dried finger. “You were trying to get out right?”

“Yes, I am. Thank you.”

“Well good luck then.” She moves to leave.

“Wait. Hold on a minute. I had some questions.” Maybe I can get some information out of her while she’s lucid.

“Okay.” Yoshika says. “Ask away!”

“Why are you here anyway?”

“Master sent me on a super secret mission to sabotage the Dustmen! Haven’t had much luck though. I’m supposed to steal a bunch of magic stuff and poison the water supply. That kind of stuff.” She sounds awfully enthusiastic for someone talking about poisoning people.

“And who is your master Yoshika?”

“Master is master of course!” Yoshika chimes, as if that explains anything. “She’s pretty and nice and loves me very much!”

“Ah.” Says Rob. “One of those people.”

I don’t really get what he means, but then, I don’t really get most of what Rob says.

“So what do you know about this place Yoshika?”

“Well, not very much really.” She holds a finger up to her chin as she thinks. “It’s real quiet and the zombies don’t say much. I miss being outside.”

“Well, that’s everything I wanted to ask.” I stand up, gathering my pile of things and Rob. “Take care of yourself Yoshika. Try not to get caught.”

“You too.” She says, waving at me.

“Lively enough, for a deader.” Rob says when we’re out of earshot.

I shush it and head down to the ground floor. I’m looking for a secret portal. Apparently, I’ll ‘know it when I see it’. Whatever that means…

The ground floor seems to be a mausoleum filled with lavish tombs. Enormous skeletons stand against the walls, seemingly equipped for war. I try to give them a wide berth without seeming conspicuous. I wouldn’t last ten seconds against those things. Their swords are bigger than I am!

Near an unmarked tomb, I notice that the finger is pointing me toward a rather unremarkable wall. As I pass by the tomb, I notice a flicker out of the corner of my eye. I turn and behold a ghost. She’s a pale green-tinged white color and is partially transparent.

The ghost addresses me spitefully. “You! What is it that brings you here? Perhaps, even in death, I still hold some shred of use for you...” she tries to grab at my throat, but I step back. “My Love?”

Ehh? I have no idea who this person even is! But she seems to know me awfully well…

(X) – (Ask the angry spirit a question. I should tread lightly here.)

Then:
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way you could help me?
[2] – If you’ll excuse me, I have to be going. My life is in danger if I stay here and I would rather not die just yet.

***
Another longest update yet! I certainly won't be able to have such long updates every day though.

This is the first real chance to get some info about who the protagonist was, so use it wisely.
No. 48781
(x) Who are you?
(x) Why do you know me?
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way I can help you?

Gotta be nice and all, that ring is hella useful.
No. 48782
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way I can help you?
No. 48783
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way you could help me?

We got Char 16, might as well put it to good use!
No. 48784
(x) Who are you?
(x) Why do you know me?
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way I can help you?

This is a good idea. Figure out who we're dealing with, and try to get along with them.
No. 48786
(x) Who am I?
(x) Who are you?
(x) How do you know me?
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way I can help you?
No. 48791
Called for:
(x) Who am I?
(x) Who are you?
(x) How do you know me?
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way I can help you?

Update should be up in a few hours.
No. 48795
File 136445906522.png - (12.06KB, 843x600, So very cross with you.png) [iqdb]
48795
(x) Who am I?
(x) Who are you?
(x) How do you know me?
[1] – (CHA) Is there any way I can help you?

“How do you know me?” I ask warily.

“You do not remember me, my love?” Her voice is uncomfortable to listen to, like the sound of two stones grinding together and layered with a crackling hiss. “Have you forgotten me once again?”

“I’m sorry.” I say, sidestepping another attempt by the spirit to strangle me. “I woke up with no memories just over two hours ago. Who are you?”

“We travelled together, many lifetimes ago.” The spirit smiles softly, as though recalling a fond memory. “For your sake, my love, I pledged myself to you eternally, in payment of a tremendous debt. An oath,” she hisses “which binds me even now.”

“I don’t understand…” I have a resentful ghost bound to me? “And what did you mean by ‘many lifetimes ago’? Who exactly am I?”

“I…” She pauses uncertainly. “I do not know. You were… searching. You sought to answer that very question. In the end, it seems you failed to find an answer.”

Well that’s not terribly helpful at all. “And the ‘many lifetimes ago’? What about that?”

“You are both blessed and cursed, my love. You do not suffer the effects of age. Even in death, you do not die.”

“That doesn’t sound like a curse at all!” Living forever seems like it would fall firmly on the side of being the greatest thing ever.

“An existence without consequence leaves no room for growth.” the spirit replies. “You forget yourself and are diminished because of it, much like I am diminished by my oath.”

“Is there any way I can help you? This oath of yours seems to cause you great anguish.”

“Yes… There is something you can do my love.” The spirit motions for me to come closer.

“What?” I ask. I don’t move toward the spirit.

“You can die!” the spirit howls, lunging at me.

I fall backward in a panic. The spirit moved too fast this time for me to really react. I only have an instant to anticipate being strangled.

The pressure on my throat never comes. I open my eyes to see the spirit straining as though against invisible chains, her fingers just a hairsbreadth away from my throat.

I feel a prickling sensation behind my eyes and…

I see the woman before me, her hands around the neck of a large, horned man. Her eyes burn with immeasurable hatred for the one in her grasp. She wears the rags of a slave and she looks both exhausted and emaciated. Her body is covered in both old scars and bleeding rents. As I look on, she snaps the man’s neck.

…what was that? I try to shake my head clear.

“Accursed oath!” she seethes. I start to back away to where the portal should be. “Wait!” she calls out, noticing my retreat.

“If you’re going to try to kill me again, I’m not waiting.” I notice a hazy purple portal has opened up behind me. If I just step back, I’ll be through.

“I have a prophesy that I’m supposed to offer you each time you are reborn.”

“I’m listening.”

“You accept it so lightly, yet you know nothing about it. This prophesy is both a blessing and a curse. The prophesy will help you discover your past, but will bind you. You shall be forced to follow it, even unwittingly.”

“And if I decline?” I don’t know if this prophesy is good or bad for me. I should at least consider the alternative.

“You shall be free of its fetters, but will lack a direction in your search for answers.”

“And why do you care what I pick?”

“It is a condition of my oath.” Says the spirit.

I suddenly realize that Rob has been uncharacteristically silent through all of this. “What do you think of this Rob? You’ve been awfully quiet.”

“Decide fer yerself.” Rob replies.

I…

[1] – (INT) I need to know who I am. I accept.
[2] – (WIS) If I do not know myself, I know nothing at all. I accept.
[3] – (INT) An unknown risk is always more dangerous than a known risk. I decline.
[4] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.
[5] – (Write-in reason.) I accept.
[6] – (Write-in reason.) I decline.
***
This is probably the single most important choice of the early story. Whether you accept or decline the offer will drastically affect the narrative. The why portion of the choice will determine the protagonist's starting ideology.

As an aside question, do any of you Planescape (the setting, not just Torment the game) fans have any particular planes you want to visit for the story? I have a few in mind already, but I'm certainly open to suggestions.

One more thing... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AfUIkniPsmQ
Oddly relevant lyrics, that.
No. 48796
[x] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.
No. 48801
[2] – (WIS) If I do not know myself, I know nothing at all. I accept.

I need directions.
No. 48802
Any upper plane would be nice.
No. 48803
[4] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.
No. 48805
[4] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.
No. 48806
We're going to go with the "rebel" path, I see.

Should've known this.
No. 48807
[2] – (WIS) If I do not know myself, I know nothing at all. I accept.

I actually can't recall. Was there a Prophesy from the ghost in the original game?

If not, this Should be something worth listening to.
No. 48810
>>48807
In game, she did offer you a prophesy, yes.
No. 48815
[x] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.

Freedom!

This is turning out to be very interesting.
No. 48817
>>48807
Yes. It wasn't a bonding prophecy per se, but the best case scenario.

[x] – (WIS) If I do not know myself, I know nothing at all. I accept.
No. 48824
Called for:
[4] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.
No. 48828
File 136455579772.jpg - (556.97KB, 1013x735, World's Largest Tire.jpg) [iqdb]
48828
[4] – (WIS) I am not the person I was. I’ll forge my own path. I decline.

“Sorry, but I’ll have to decline. I’m not the person you once knew. I intend to forge m own path.”

“Funny…” replies the spirit, “You’ve said that before. Many times, in fact. And yet, here we are.”

I’m a bit taken aback by that. “Even so, I still reject your prophesy.”

“And why is that?” the spirit asks, tilting her head. “Doesn’t that newfound knowledge make you reconsider?”

I actually have an answer to that. “If I seek to know my past, it shall not be because I must. Rather, it will be because I choose to of my own will.”

The spirit claps soundlessly. “Congratulations. You are the first incarnation to be able to respond to that. You should be so proud. You might actually break the cycle. I doubt it, but it would not be the first time I was wrong about you.”

The spirit fades away, leaving me standing alone. I quickly proceed through the portal. I don’t want to stay in these creepy halls any longer than necessary.

Going through the portal induces a sense of vertigo, as though the ground is at a completely different angle from the side I came from. There’s no other sensation though, not even the weird tingling sensation I was expecting.

Once I get my bearings, I look around. I’m in a small, one room crypt, with an ornate tomb in the center. Can’t say I’m surprised. Everything is lit with a faint blue glow, despite there being no lit torches. Huh, it would seem that the spikes in my back glow in the dark. That’s useful I guess. Good thing I didn’t try sneaking out.

Hmm, there’s something on the floor here. A rolled piece of parchment and a small coin purse. I unroll the parchment. I can’t quite read what’s written on it in this light.

“Hey Rob?”

“What?” When Rob speaks, the room lights up briefly. I can use that now, if I can keep its noise level constant.

“You make light when you talk. I need it to read this note. Would you mind making some sort of constant sound?”

“You want to use me as a lamp?” Rob sighs. The sigh goes on for almost a full minute; long enough for me to read the note.


Yoshika,
If you are reading this, you have likely been detected by the dustmen and are now fleeing the Mortuary. If I have finished my business in the city at this time, I will be awaiting you by the Gatehouse. Should you not see me there, you are to await me in the nearby Swan Song Inn. The money I am leaving you should be enough for a room there until I arrive.
With love,
S


“Well? What’s it say?” Rob has finished its drawn-out sigh.

“It’s a message to Yoshika. It lists a meeting place. Ever heard of the Swan Song Inn?”

“Can’t say I have. But with a name like that, it’s probably in Bleaker territory. Might be worth looking into, if it leads us to that master of hers anyway.”

(Updated my Journal: Look into Yoshika’s meeting with ‘S’.”)

I should probably look like something other than a zombie if I’m going to be roaming the streets. Considering I have a pile of sheets, bandages, and the backless gowns I took from some of the dead, I’ll have to improvise. The scalpel comes in handy in that regard. I wind up cutting slits in the sides of two gowns and using tied strips of cloth to connect them into a sort of crude robe. I also cut holes in the back for the crystals. I use some of the bandages as footwraps. Lastly, I stow the scalpel and the remaining bandages in a sheet, using it as a makeshift sack. I can’t sling it over my shoulder, on account of the spikes, but it will have to do.

“Ye don’t plan on puttin’ me in there, by any chance, do ye?” Rob accuses.

“I look like a homeless person.”

“Ya are a homeless person.”

“I mean that people would assume that I stole you. That’s bound to draw the wrong kind of attention. Besides, it’ll only be until I can get you out of that orb.”

“I guess…” Rob concedes. “Hey, aren’t ye plannin’ to take that money?”

“I’m reluctant to steal from someone I just helped. It leaves a bad taste in my mouth.”

“Ye get used to it… Think about it like this; she can’t starve, but you can.”

“Alright.” I concede. “Now shut up and get in the bag!”

With that taken care of, I gather everything up, push open the crypt door, and step out into a whole new world. The first thing that hits me is the smell. I gag from the unholy combination of spoiled meat, waste, and burning garbage. I spend a few minutes in eye-watering agony, trying to get used to it, to get the acrid taste off my tongue.

Next are the sounds, or rather the lack of them. I can’t hear a single voice or footstep. The place is a ghost town. I know it’s supposed to be a crowded city, but I honestly can’t blame anyone for not wanting to live near this stench.

Once my eyes start to clear up, I can actually make out the street around me. I’m currently on a narrow street of lopsided buildings. Everything is yellowish-brown, the color of decay. The cracked, uneven cobbles which make up the street are littered with refuse of all sorts and between them is what I hope to be muddy water. It seems to be night out, but that might just be smog.

Lastly, there is a slight breeze which picks up the occasional bit of paper. It’s humid out, but warmer than the Mortuary was. It’s just enough to warm my extremities.

All in all, this place is a cesspit.

I set off toward where the street seems to widen out. That seems as good a direction as any. I keep my eyes at my feet. The footwraps are only good to a point after all. I don’t want to step on a rusted piece of metal and cripple myself. Not to mention the resulting infection… Best not to think about that.

The street opens up onto a plaza. At one end is a spiked, menacing building which I assume to be the Mortuary. There are a few people about, either standing around or going about their business. I look around uncertainly, not really sure where to go from here.

“You lost?” a man asks.

“Huh? Oh yes, sort of.” He looks harmless enough, but I’m still a bit nervous.

“First time in The Cage?”

“Something like that.”

“Well yer in luck then! I happen to be a tout, so for the measly price of three coppers, I can point ye anywhere ye need to go!”

I don’t really have any other options, so I dig out a few coins for the man.

“So then, what are ye lookin’ fer?”

I ask the man about a number of places I need to visit. He provides helpful enough directions that I should be able to get to each with minimal difficulty. I can probably think of a few more questions though.

(X) – (Ask the man a question. There’s a lot I don’t know about Sigil.)

Then, I should decide where to go first:
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.
[2] – Stop by a clothier. I need a pair of shoes at minimum if I’m going to survive, let alone walk everywhere.
[3] – I’m feeling really worn out. I should rent a bed somewhere.
[4] – I could really do with a meal.
[5] – I don’t really know how to properly defend myself. I need to find someone to teach me…
- martial combat
-magic
- something else
[6] – I don’t really have anything to defend myself with. I wonder if I have enough to afford a weapon. I could probably release Rob while on this errand.
[7] – Investigate the Swan Song Inn for Yoshika’s master. I can get a room and board while I’m there, and kill two birds with one stone. I should probably be prepared for a fight though, just in case.

***
So ends the Prologue: Awake. Now, Nameless and Rob begin their adventure. Who knows what lies in store for them.

To all of my current voters, and those who later pick up this story, Thank You. Without you, I would have no motivation to write. As it is now, I am having a lot of fun with this story, and I hope you are as well.

Lastly, I will be away from home this weekend, so I might not be able to update again until Sunday. I'll certainly try my damnedest to though.
No. 48829
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.

First, we need to see our physical condition. Then, we can learn to defend ourselves. Probably with magic. I hope there's a Mebbeth equivalent in this story?

Also, Wanderlost? The reason there are people following this story is because it's good. Looking forward to your return!
No. 48833
[5] – I don’t really know how to properly defend myself. I need to find someone to teach me…
-magic

Probably the teacher can give us a place to sleep and some clothes to put on. Hopefully.
No. 48834
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.

I fully expect those spikes in our back are actually our wings, and they got shoved into us somehow. Wanna get to a healer to see if I'm right or not.

Anyone got any ideas for what to ask the guy? I haven't played the game, I don't know what to ask.

I just realized. We completely skipped talking to the really old dude in front of the Huge Ledger. And almost the entire dungeon. How?
No. 48835
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.

Have our wounds stopped bleeding yet?
No. 48836
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.
- And try to keep a spike, as an emergency weapon/torch until we get something better.

It's no good getting clothes with the spikes, and they will get in the way of everything else too so lets be rid of them.
No. 48841
Called for:
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.

>>48835
The wounds still slowly ooze blood. Not enough to result in bleeding out, but infection could be a problem.
No. 48842
File 136462157880.jpg - (1.51MB, 800x1000, Mad Hatless.jpg) [iqdb]
48842
[1] – See a healer. I really need to get this looked at.

I can’t really think of anything else to ask, so I go on my way. My first priority is to see a healer about my injuries. The spikes don’t really hurt, but they are freaking me out a little. On top of that, they have proven incredibly inconvenient. As such, I’m going to get them out now.

I travel northwest, to a place called Ragpicker’s Square. The place itself certainly fits with the unpleasant name. Rather than the light dusting of garbage seen elsewhere, here it’s heaped in large, decaying mounds. The air smells of sickness and people’s appearances reflect that. I cover my face with a spare piece of cloth; I don’t want to catch whatever plague is going around.

Fortunately, I quickly come upon the building I was seeking, a rounded hut elevated off of the ground by half-rotten stilts. I push past the heavy rug serving as a makeshift door, not knowing what to expect inside. The hut is surprisingly warm on the inside, and free of the stink of decay. Instead, I smell a varied blend of dried herbs, most of which are hanging from the rafters. There is a fire pit burning in the center with a cauldron over it. Currently at the cauldron is a girl of about height. She doesn’t appear to have noticed me coming in.

“Excuse me.” I say. The girl turns, pointing a ladle at me accusingly.

“Very busy. Come back later.”

“I was told this was where I could find a healer. Would that be you?” She doesn’t look terribly impressive at first glance, but I’m not fooled. She and her red and white clothes look much too clean. White doesn’t stay white in this kind of atmosphere. There has to be magic involved.

“Healer, midwife, some say witch. Witches not to be trusted. Not trusty. If Ellen is a witch, she cannot trust Ellen. Ellen is barely on speaking terms with Ellen anyway. Still mad about stealing Ellen’s man. Ellen is mad.” So it would seem.

“Ellen? Is that your name?” I couldn’t really follow most of that.

“Mysterious, mad, magical, mad Ellen!” she says, pointing to herself.

“Listen, I need help with-”

“Pregnancy? Not want baby? Easy to take out. Free, if Ellen can keep heart. Very good for potion. But rare. Most run screaming when asked.” She flails her arms in the air for emphasis.

“What.” I’m getting less keen on having these spikes removed by the moment. And why would she think I was pregnant?

“Is joke. Jokey joke. Eyes much more useful. Make potion for communing with spirits.”

“If you’ll excuse me, I really have somewhere to be…” She grabs my arm as I attempt to leave.

“Ellen is sorry. Sometimes, she rambles. Rambley brambley mambley pambley. Ambley. Will heal wounds. Very serious.”

Okay.” I get the feeling she won’t let me leave otherwise.

“Sit. Let Ellen look.” I do as I’m told with only a token struggle. I don’t want to admit it, but I feel really vulnerable. I’m in an unfamiliar city, in an unfamiliar house, with a total stranger poking at my bare back. I would probably be a terrified wreck right now if I wasn’t likely in shock.

“Very interesting.” She says after about ten minutes of poking at me. “Stuck. Not take out.”

“I’m stuck like this?” Well this is just wonderful.

“Magic lock. Lock block clock. Need key.”

“What kind of key?” Great, another thing to search for.

“Not key key. Code key. Combination lock.”

“What does that even mean?”

“Like puzzles. Like puzzles? Ellen loves puzzles. Puzzles very well. Hates math though. But solved it.”

“Then solve it!” Is this girl messing with me? I honestly can’t tell if she’s mocking me or just insane. Probably both.

“No. Ellen will not interrupt learning experience. Need to ask question.”

What question?” She’s really trying my patience.

“Wrong question.” She taps me on the head with her ladle.

“How am I supposed to guess if I don’t even know the puzzle?”

“Wrong question. But here.” She digs around on a shelf for a piece of parchment. She scrawls a few numbers on it and presents it to me.

0
1
9
55
1-1
55^-1

What the hell is this?

[1] – (Let the readers try to solve this. In case that doesn’t work, pick a backup option.)
[2] – (INT) Try and solve the puzzle.
[3] – (WIS) Try asking the right question…
[4] – (WIL/LIF) Try to brute force it.
[5] – (CHA) Convince Ellen to give you the answer.

***
Do you like puzzles THP? I spent maybe half an hour on this one. You do get up to three hints if you like. I'd prefer if most of you gave at least a token effort toward solving it.

This update was really fun to write. I hope I achieved the appropriate level of insanity and incoherence.

Lastly, is there anything any of you noticed that I could do with improving upon? I don't actually proofread back over an update before posting it. If I did, my latent perfectionism would constantly cause me to start over and never get anything done. It'd be like pulling teeth by tying a string to a jet. Which is to say a trip to the hospital at best. So nothing like each other at all then.
No. 48846
Hmmm...

So we have a zero, one, and nine.

Then there's a 55. One minus one is zero. 55 to the power of negative one is 1/55.

Hrm. Not seeing the pattern. Anyone else have anything? I wanna see us do this thing on our own.

Anyway Wanderlost, you're doing a good job here. One thing, it never hurts to read through what you've written just once. Don't second-guess yourself on what you've written; madness lies that way, as you've noticed. But it lets you notice simple spelling and grammar mistakes. This update seems clean of those, though.
No. 48848
Right. I had a thought. If we don't know how to answer the question, why not use our awesome WIS score to try and ask the right question?

Cause I'll be honest, I have No idea how to answer that puzzle. Need to go find a friend with math skills. See if he knows the answer.

[3] – (WIS) Try asking the right question…

If none of us an figure out the puzzle, this is my vote.
No. 48849
Alright, taking a crack at that puzzle. If it doesn't work, my vote:

[2] – (INT) Try and solve the puzzle.
Followed by
[3] – (WIS) Try asking the right question…
should 2 fail.
No. 48855
Right, here's my first shot at it.

Data:
Six numbers: 0,1,9,55,1-1,55^-1
Six spikes, pale blue crystal. Angles, positions, etc. unknown; probable unnecesary.

Notes:
Puzzle was likened to a combination lock. The solution is likely a sequence of numbers.
Puzzle was "solved". It's unlikely that it's a simple observation.
Ellen noted "Hates math though." Puzzle is probably math related.
OOC three hints were offered. Puzzle is not simple.

Workspace(spoilered for rambling,half-coherent notes):


There are six numbers and six spikes. They likely correspond somehow.

I'm guessing that the first four form something of a set, while the last two give some direction to a logical sequence...1-1, 1/55; 1-1/55; 54/55,0,9...54 is a multiple of 9 and 6...6, again.6,0...6-0=6,6+0=6,6*0=0,6/0=positive and negative infinity, and 0;6^0=1...1 again...this was probably a miss from 54 on.

Parse the numbers, then. Half won't map to the standard alphabet, and one won't map to anything I know, so it's unlikely a direct matchup.

Frequency: 0,2;1,1;9,1;55,2. 0,55: 2; 1,9: 1. To binary, maybe: 011000, 24. No pattern; more info needed if this were a floating point or other encode.

Factors: 0:X,1:1,9:1,3,9;55:1,5,11,55
Derived: 3,5,11. These might fit in somewhere.

11,1-1...something seems connected, here. Unknown.

More data needed...
"Magic lock. Lock block clock. Need key."
"Not key key. Code key. Combination lock."
"Like puzzles. Like puzzles? Ellen loves puzzles. Puzzles very well. Hates math though. But solved it."

Magic...clock...key...

Six seems to be repeated a fair bit. Clock...12 or 24, maybe. Magic lock suggests that a magically significant number may be involved somewhere. 6...12...9? I'm probably biased here, because Cirno, but maybe. A quick search showed that it was significant in a fair number of things with wide spread, so it would fill the magical significance guess. It's also in the original set.

9...clock...⑨...probably not, but it is a possible solution.

55^1...1 repeats itself a fair bit. 55 is there twice...it's the only exponent directly stated...the puzzle probably uses exponents and subtractions at some point.

Clock, six...exponents...12/6=2,24/6=4...1,2,4...ascending squares, limit 55? 1,2,4,9,16,25,36,49. 7, another magically significant number...

49-36=13
36-25=11
25-16=9
16-9=7
9-4=5
4-2=2
2-1=1

Probable miss.

"Code key"

Some manner of encoding? Improbable, but...

Ending session.

Possible solutions(see workspace for reasoning):

Numerical sequence (length=6?,9?,12?,24?; unknown contents)
Phrase (length=6? characters?,possibly encoded in the numbers we were given, or a sequence derived from that)
No. 48856
>>48855
Wow, you've really thought about this. It isn't that complicated though. Still, I'm impressed and you are awesome.

First clue:

Letters, numbers, spikes, six of each.{/i]

Second clue:

[i]Though they may come close, they do not touch.


Third clue:

The meaning of each is determined differently. Arranged correctly, you will discover the truth found within.


I can translate these into being non-cryptic if you prefer.
No. 48857
Let's see...

If I'm reading that right, the code is of the form <character>,<number>,<spike>x6. Each set of three is unique(unknown if all items are unique, or if each set is unique), with a unique method to determine. Taken in one specific order, a message is formed.

With the English alphabet, that's 26^6 possible arrangements, with non-unique solutions. Brute force is unlikely to work...it gets worse if Unicode is used.

The six spikes still don't have any description to differentiate them, though Elly would have had access to such information while solving...

There is probably something to determine the methods needed, but I'm not seeing it at the moment.
No. 48858
>>48856

Hmmm....

So we have six spikes... six numbers... maybe each number corresponds to a letter in word? And no two letters are next to each other, and it's a word-scramble... maybe. So:

0=O
1=A
9=I
55= 5+5= 10= J?
1-1=0 = a second O?
55^-1= 1/55= I have no frickin' idea.

...Anybody?
No. 48859
>>48858
First three are correct, the fifth is like the first, solve the fourth and the sixth should come to you.
No. 48860
Hmmm...

1-26:a-z
27-52:A-Z
53+:?

Unless it's a punctuation mark, that's probably a no go.

^-1...6 is 4 inverted? That should work.

x:x, o:o, b:p...

4 is possibly either b or p...I'm not sure how that would be derived, though.
No. 48861
Well, 1-1 is presumably H.

As for 55 and 55^-1...

Well, there are only a few letters that can really... Invert.

There's:
M and W
d and b
b and p
q and d
q and d
q and p
d and p
u and n
depending on the axis of symmetry.

Maybe that'll help?
No. 48863
>>48861

Good thinking... If the sixth is the fourth inverted, or upside down, M and W are the most likely candidates.

As for the fifth... LIKE the first, but not necessarily the first. 'Though they may come close they do not touch...' Maybe meaning all of the letters are different?

1 minus 1... I minus I... I-I

You're right. It's an H.

So we have O A I and maybe M H W.

... WHO AM I.
No. 48864
>>48863
And that is the right question.
No. 48868
So...

We got the right question. Update? Yes or no?
No. 48869
File 136469775195.jpg - (204.07KB, 547x800, How much puzzle could a puzzle puzzle if a puzzle .jpg) [iqdb]
48869
“Who am I?”

“Right question. No idea though. Hold still now or will really hurt.”

“What are you-” PAIN. Very cold now. Can’t breathe. Is this what death feels like?

I collapse, unconscious.

---

I’m sitting on a wagon, slowly making its way down a rough country road. It’s a cold day at the beginning of spring. The snow is just starting to melt and the plants are once again turning green. Ahead, occupying most of my view is a mountain that seems to extend endlessly into the sky, far above the clouds.

“Is this really necessary?” says a voice beside me. I turn to face the speaker.

“Absolutely. Should we happen to fail, I need to guarantee that my future incarnations have a chance to succeed.”

“It just seems like you’re being overly fatalistic. How can we hope to succeed when you always expect to fail?”

I turn to my companion. She’s come a long way these last four years. Gone is the primal fear, the fear of physical contact. She no longer looks so sickly. Her scars, physical and psychological, are fading. She only rarely wakes screaming. Truly, this half-elf woman is more resilient than most.

“It pays to be prepared, my love. Plan for the worst, pray for the best.” I say.

“You’re hardly the praying type, but I see your point.” My companion smiles, a rare sight.

“Hope for the best then.” But prepare certain… contingencies.


---

I awaken in pain. It feels as though I have a burning fever. I feel nauseous and have the taste of ash in my mouth. It seems I’m in a bed, covered up to my neck with a soft blanket.

“Awake?” asks Ellen.

“What happened? I hurt all over.”

“Passed out. Had to push spikes in before taking out. Staking out. Cleaned and emptied wounds. Healed up quick slick trick. Not painless though.”

“Why does it feel like I have a fever?”

“Magic stakes lowering body temperature. Very cold to touch. Ellen could have lost fingers.” She says the last part as though it’s my fault.

“Wait, emptied my wounds? Was something in there?”

“Note. Waterproofing magics.” She hands me the note.

It reads:

Ashes to ashes,
Dust to dust,
Seek the leader,
Yet dare not trust.[i]

Great, [i]more
puzzles.

“Anything else?”

“Nothing. Ellen put stakes in bag. Not sure if counts.”

Sure enough, my sack now clinks with the sound of the spikes. I imagine that Rob isn’t particularly happy though.

“If fine now, then leave. Very busy things to do.”

I feel a little better now, actually. I’m now healthy and rested. Still…

(X) – (Ask Ellen a question.)

[1] – (INT) Examine the spikes once more.
[2] – (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.
[3] – See if Ellen can do something about Rob.
[4] – Time to go. Next I should:
- Get myself some proper clothes
- Get something to eat
- Seek out a weapon shop
- Find a person to train you in (subject)
- Investigate the Swan Song Inn

***
Forgot to mention this earlier, but the trick for 55 was 5 being the roman numeral V. Two Vs side by side form a W.

The riddle should be obvious if you've been paying attention.

Lastly, well done those of you who attempted the puzzle. The fact that you solved it pleases me greatly.
No. 48872
[2] – (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.

Well, we have to learn from SOMEONE. Why not a crazy, barely-comprehensible healer?
No. 48874
[1] – (INT) Examine the spikes once more.
[2] – (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.
[3] – See if Ellen can do something about Rob.

Any reason we can't do all three of these? Also, yay! We removed the large painful spikes from our back. Good day!

Now, anyone feel like making out the riddle we got from our back spike? Is it related to something from Planescape, or is my riddle solving skills just that bad?
No. 48875
[x] (INT) Examine the spikes once more.
[x] (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.
[x] See if Ellen can do something about Rob.
No. 48879
Right, that's a fairly easy one.

Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust is a phrase from the English Burial service, and limits the subject to those who work with the dead. Of those we've met, that points to the Dustmen and Yoshika.

From there, the rest is rather easy. Seek the leader, either the leader of the Dustmen or Seiga, but don't trust her. Since we've got a potential location to meet Seiga already, I'm guessing that she is the one intended.

Now, votes.

[1] – (INT) Examine the spikes once more.
[2] – (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.
[3] – See if Ellen can do something about Rob.
No. 48882
Calling it now:
[1] – (INT) Examine the spikes once more.
[2] – (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.
[3] – See if Ellen can do something about Rob.
No. 48888
File 136480803661.jpg - (1.09MB, 723x1024, In an Alternate Universe She Would be Marisa.jpg) [iqdb]
48888
[1] – (INT) Examine the spikes once more.
[2] – (CHA) Ask Ellen to teach you magic.
[3] – See if Ellen can do something about Rob.

I decide to examine the spikes once more. Taking them out of my bag, the first thing I notice is how cold they are. My fingers start to go numb almost instantly upon touching them. I would guess that the cold, numbing effect is what kept them from being excruciatingly painful.

The spikes are about the length from my fingertips to my elbow. As they are now, the spikes wouldn’t make especially good weapons. If they had some sort of grip or I was wearing gloves, they could probably inflict a nasty stab wound though. The spikes seem resistant to wear, so that’s something. Maybe they would make good spearheads or javelins, but I don’t know enough about weapons to be able to tell for sure.

The spikes are clearly magical and are covered in unfamiliar symbols and characters. I suspect that they hold a great deal more than just one secret. I can’t do anything else with them just yet, but maybe if I knew magic…

“Hey Ellen?” I ask, an idea forming in my head, “Could you teach me magic?”

“Want to know magic? Ellen wonders why.”

“Maybe I’m simply curious.”

“No lying. Lying crying scrying. Honesty.”

“I wasn’t lying.” Though that isn’t really the main reason, “I want to know things, to understand. I want to decode what’s on these spikes.” There, is that good enough?

“Ask someone to solve then. Terrible reason. Now tell Ellen why.”

“It’s because I need power!” I all but shout.

“Power?” Ellen gives me a disappointed look. “Worst reason. Fools think power means happiness. Never satisfied. Always want more.”

“I’m not some egomaniac! I just want to be able to defend myself! I’m lost, clueless, and helpless. Not being able to protect myself is a death sentence.” I’m positively seething at this point.

“Good reason.” Ellen says. “But Ellen will not teach magic.”

“Well, why not?”

“Becomes justification. If stronger, could have protected everyone. Again and again, but never strong enough. Eventually seek power for sake of power. Take bigger risks. Mess up and die.” Her voice, which has been steadily increasing in volume, now falls to a whisper. “Or break like Ellen.”

“I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have pressured you.” Well now I feel terrible. I can’t even meet her gaze. “I’ll ask someone else.”

“Orb could teach. Saw in bag.”

“Huh? You mean Rob?” I pull the orb out of my bag.

“Well it’s about damn time!” says Rob.

“Ellen said you could teach me magic Rob.” I state, ignoring Rob’s complaints about the bag.

“Sorry, but I can’t.”

“Lies. Vulgar Spirits always lying.” Ellen says, accusingly pointing at Rob.

“You do seem to know an awful lot about necromancy Rob.” I say.

“I spent the last two hundred thirty eight years, eleven weeks, and three days surrounded by nothing but zombies and Dustmen! I bloody well better know about necromancy!” Rob kept track of the length of its captivity down to the day? I’m impressed.

“Vulgar Spirits always lie. Trick and manipulate and steal. Not trusty at all.”

“I’ll give ye vulgar ye-” I cut Rob off.

“Enough! Both of you! Ellen, why do you hate Rob so much? Rob, why are you so offended? And what’s a Vulgar Spirit?”

“Vulgar Spirit.” Says Ellen simply.

“Vulgar Spirit is a bit of a misleadin’ name actually.” responds Rob. “Basically, they’re the animated desires of living things. They’re no more intelligent than ants, really. They’re entirely beholden to the desires from which they spring, usually a desire to live. As a result, they tend to try possessin’ livin’ things. Calling me somethin’ like that is like saying a stone golem is the same as an earth elemental. Wars have been started for less.”

“See Ellen, Rob isn’t a Vulgar Spirit.”

“Still liar!”

“I haven’t once lied to either of ye.” Responds Rob. “Not my fault ye got yer soul stolen witch.”

“Out!” Ellen cries, grabbing Rob and heaving it out her doorway.

I stare in shock. “What the hell was that for?”

“Ellen is sorry.” She collapses weakly into a chair, drained of energy. “Ellen loses control sometimes. No anger please.”

I don’t know what I’m supposed to feel in this situation. In the end though, my dominant feeling is…

[1] – Anger
[2] – Pity
[3] - Sympathy
[4] - Uncertainty
[5] – It doesn’t matter. I should go after Rob.
[6] – (Write-in.)

Oh, and:
[X] What will be the next errand to run.

***
Not terribly happy with this update. It's all over the place as far as tone. I got all the important parts for the votes in, but I feel that they meshed poorly. Hopefully tomorrow and it's update will be better for me.
No. 48889
[3] - Sympathy
- Make sure Rob is safe (and not about to be stolen), but promise to come back immediately
No. 48890
[3] - Sympathy

Soul stolen? Oh man. If that's the case, she's like us. Lost something important. I doubt we can help her as we are right now, but let's keep an open eye. We have to at least try to help her.

[x] Buy some clothes.

Just take a minute to get ourselves looking presentable. A possible teacher would probably rather not teach a bum. We can look for instruction afterwards.
No. 48898
>>48890
Uh... You DID read our description in the first few posts, didn't you? Making ourselves "representable" is going to take WAY more than some spiffy clothes. (Also I take it you've not played torment, have you?)

[x] - Sympathy
No. 48901
>>48898

Point taken. Still, a bath, a dip in some disinfectant, and some new clothes would probably do wonders for us, at least.
No. 48906
Called for:
[3] - Sympathy
and
[x] Buy some clothes/make yourself presentable.
No. 48911
File 136489590050.jpg - (311.55KB, 1024x1263, I have no more Ellen pictures.jpg) [iqdb]
48911
[3] - Sympathy
[x] Buy some clothes/make yourself presentable.

“It’s alright Ellen. I’m not mad at you. I know what it’s like to lose a part of myself.”

“Ellen feels a little better now. Glad she helped.” Wow, she seems really worn out. She looks to be about ready to go to sleep.

“For what it’s worth,” I say, “I’d help you reclaim your soul if I was able.” I at least owe her something.

Ellen seems to regain her energy. “Good person. Much better than Ellen. Can’t teach magic, but can help. Return in three days. Ellen will teach healing arts.”

“Really?” That would help me a ton. “How can I ever repay you?”

“Ellen wants to help. No repaying.”

“Thank you so much!” I give her a hug.

“Welcome. Ellen has to work now. Get affairs in order. Write recipes for potions. Finish potion orders. Will take three days. Ellen will teach then.”

I say goodbye to Ellen and gather up my things. I need to make sure Rob isn’t getting into any more trouble.

As soon as I go outside, I can hear Rob yelling in some unfamiliar tongue. The orb landed just shy of a particularly jagged rock.

“Calm down Rob! You’re making a scene!”

“Did ye see how close I was to hittin’ that rock?”

“You’re fine! You just missed it!”

“I wanted ta hit the rock ye barmy twit! I would’ve been free!”

I pick Rob up and drop it on the rock. The rock breaks. “Didn’t work. Now quiet down and lets go.”

“Where to next? I ask because yer shopping list is so interestin’.” Rob remarks.

“I need to get a pair of shoes and some proper clothes.”

“And a bath. Ye look like ye’ve crawled out of a sewer.”

“I might as well have. I guess I’ll add that one to the list.”

“Good luck finding a bath though. Even the rain in the Hive Ward is stained brown with filth.”

I eventually come upon the market area. It’s actually day out now. Shops line the streets, and vendors peddle their wares. There’s a much larger crowd around here. The smell of cooking meat entices me, but I decide to hold off on eating until I’m clean. Somehow I doubt I’d enjoy the taste too much if every bite tastes like dirt and blood.

I enter a shop displaying clothing in its dirty windows. Most of the clothes within are drab and utilitarian, though there are a few higher quality outfits. The shopkeeper, an elven man with a noticeably receding hairline, leers at me when I come in.

“I ain’t the alms givin’ type, so scram.”

“I’m not a beggar!” though I can see why he would think that. “I’m a paying customer. I just look like this because I’ve been having a rough couple of days.”

“Well don’t touch anything till you get clean.”

“Well where am I supposed to find a bath then?”

“Great, another clueless Prime. Water’s too rare to waste on that.” The shopkeeper shakes his head.

“Well how do you stay clean then?”

“Magic.” He snaps his fingers. All of the grime on my body and clothes evaporates. “The only folk who stay dirty are the fools who can’t learn even the simplest spell. Now buy something or get the hell out!”

I’ll definitely need a sturdy pair of boots. The only question is whether to get clothes plain or distinctive. Plain clothes will make me inconspicuous, at least as long as I’m here in the Hive Ward. They seem like they’ll be kind of itchy though. The higher quality clothes will make me stand out quite a bit more, which could potentially be good if I want to make a name for myself. Could be terrible if I don’t though. They’re also more expensive and more comfortable. Neither kind will hamper my mobility terribly much.

I’ll go with…
[1] – Plain
[2] - Distinct

And:
[X] - Next errand. Assume Nameless will be getting food regardless.
- Weapon shop
- Swan Song Inn
- Trainer in (subject)

***
Too short for the amount of time it took me. Nothing else to really say down here today.
No. 48913
[1] – Plain

We're already distinctive thanks to being covered head to toe with scars, and being distinctive to those we want to meet and plain to those we don't is ideal.We also save cash for other stuff is anyone's keeping count.

[X] Trainer in Magic

Judging by the shopkeepers response magic is common around here and used for all kinds of utility, so picking up the basics should be easy and important. It will probably be our best way to defend ourselves too. Note: Telekinesis + Rob = ranged weapon.
No. 48915
[1] – Plain

Yeah, let's lat low for the moment. We can gussy up later, if we feel the need to.

[X] Trainer in Magic

Need to defend ourselves, and we're a smarts build. So, magic.

...Maybe Seiga?
No. 48916
[x]Plain
[x]Trainer in Magic
[x]Check your hair color.
No. 48926
Called for:
[1] - Plain
[X]Trainer in Magic
[X]Check your hair color.
No. 48933
File 136496302596.jpg - (679.79KB, 1024x768, Sigil from Below.jpg) [iqdb]
48933
[1] - Plain
[X] Trainer in Magic
[X] Check your hair color.

I decide to go with something inconspicuous and plain. Blending in should be safer than standing out after all. Besides, if I intend to make a name for myself, I need enough power to do so.

I buy a pair of boots, and a gray tunic and pants. Since the shop has a changing room, I have the opportunity to change here and now.

Since the changing room has a mirror, I take the opportunity to check my real hair color while I’m in there. I’ve got white, shoulder length hair. I also notice that my eyes are black as coals. When coupled with my pale grey skin and the occasional white scar, it gives the impression of being some sort of undead. I’m clearly not though, considering the fact that I bleed. I honestly don’t know if this is my normal coloration or if it’s due to my supposed ‘curse of immortality’.

I guess I can figure that out later. Right now I’m hungry.

That problem is one I can solve at least. I wind up buying a few skewers of meat and vegetables grilled over a fire. Kebabs I think the vendor called them. Well, whatever they are, they taste delicious. They’re also convenient in that I can eat them with one hand as I go about my business.

Next, I figure I should find someone to teach me magic. An exchange of a few coins is enough to get someone to teach me a few minor tricks, but for any real offensive or defensive power, I’m going to need a dedicated trainer. Fortunately, I receive a few recommendations from particularly helpful strangers.

I’ll seek out…
[1] – Mai Iscariot of the Doomguard. Apparently, she’s one of the most powerful ice mages in Sigil. She is known to be very picky about her apprentices though, as well as cruel and vindictive.
[2] – Yuki Moto of the Free League. A firecaster and illusionist of only middling power, she’s nevertheless developed a reputation for being willing to teach magic to almost anyone.
[3] – Utsuho Reiuji, a factor of the Believers of the Source. Apparently a household name, this woman has rapidly moved up the ranks of her faction. She’s supposed to be close to the apex of Sigil’s personal and possibly political power. I find this intimidating and don’t know how I would approach such a person.
[4] - Yumemi Okazaki of the Fraternity of Order. She's an actual professional magic instructor and is always offering classes. They’re a bit outside my price range though.
[5] – S, Yoshika’s mysterious master. I know nothing about this person, save that he or she is a necromancer.

[X] I wonder if I shouldn’t ask rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean.

***
Really short update, this. I figured I should give you your pick of teachers rather than sticking you with one.
No. 48934
Figures I'm the first to vote for a important looking vote, and I have no Planescape experience. Oh well, have the logic of an ignorant voter!

I see we have to choose from ice, fire/illusion, raw power(?), proper teacher, and more necro.

Ice seems good if we want to learn more about ourselves, which I don't think we do.

Fire if we want to go against what little we know to try and make our own path.

Okuu looks like the stand out option. She's a powerful and a touhou so it smells like unwanted attention.

Yumemi, another touhou, but she's a PC-98 character. We don't have the money, but odds are we could get lessons anyways via stats and such. Still seems like to much notice to me.

And finally possible necro stuff with Seiga. We did befriend Yoshika, and Rob knows a lot about it from pure exposure.

That being said I'm going for,

[5] – S, Yoshika’s mysterious master. I know nothing about this person, save that he or she is a necromancer.

[X] I wonder if I shouldn't ask rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean.

Why, you may ask? Simple, we look like a corpse so we should be naturals at controlling them!
No. 48937
>>48934

Your looking at this from the wrong angle IMO. What type of damage we do is mostly flavor, I would pay more attention to the other properties they possess.

1 – Mai Iscariot of the Doomguard. Powerful, but a pain to deal with.

2 – Yuki Moto of the Free League. Reasonably easy to convince, though not of great power. has illusions to boot.

3 – Utsuho Reiuji, Hard to approach and no hints to whether she would actually teach, but potentially the most damaging spells.would be a quest to get her to teach and will also bring factions to the forefront.

4 - Yumemi Okazaki of the Fraternity of Order. An option if we can get cash, a quest in itself.

5 – S, Yoshika’s mysterious master. Wild card,we don't know what she's going to be like (in character) or if she even teaches, but will forward the story. There's nothing to say we can't accept teaching from more then 1 trainer though.

Regardless as they all have a faction we should ask rob about them before making a choice, so w don't screw ourselves over later.

[X] I wonder if I shouldn't ask rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean. Decide after the explanation.
No. 48938
[X] I wonder if I shouldn't ask rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean. Decide after the explanation.
No. 48939
[X] I wonder if I shouldn't ask rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean. Decide after the explanation.
No. 48940
[3]-Reiuji, of the Godsmen

Regardless of the teaching thing, Joining the Believers of the source is a worthy goal all in itself. And the main requirement for it is, usually, just being a hardworking person and a belief that we reap what we sow, which seems to be the motto of this site.

As for how we'd get her to teach us... I'd go for a frontal assault: ask her directly and see what are her requisites. Being hardheaded, smart and charismatic (our build, basically) helps too.
No. 48944
[3]-Reiuji, of the Godsmen

Mainly because I lik the godsmen faction. Always have. I doubt we'll get her to teach us directly, but if we get her advice as to how to go about improving ourselves in this manner, she could at least point us in the right direction.
No. 48946
>>48934
B-but Yuki and Mai are touhous too!

[2] sounds like the best option to me, considering our current situation. Others are more likely to shoo us away.
No. 48948
Yeah, kind of feel like this is probably a good idea, so more people can have a better idea of what's going on.


[X] I wonder if I shouldn't ask rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean. Decide after the explanation.
No. 48949
[5] – S, Yoshika’s mysterious master
No. 48950
Called for:
[X] I wonder if I shouldn't ask Rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean. Decide after the explanation.
No. 48957
>>48946
Oh they are, aren't they? Welp PC-98 touhous are always hard to remember, no offence to them.
No. 48960
File 136505456317.gif - (104.33KB, 425x335, Faction Symbols.gif) [iqdb]
48960
[X] I wonder if I shouldn’t ask Rob to explain the faction system to me. I don’t know what any of those titles mean. Decide after the explanation.

“Hey Rob? Can you explain the faction system to me?”

“What do ye need specifically?”

“All of my potential magic teachers belong to different factions. A general explanation of the faction system would be nice.”

“I’ll explain it just once, unless ye need something clarified. It’s long and complicated, so I figure I’ll just give ye a basic history lesson on the faction system and a rundown of what each group believes. Sound good?”

“Alright, that works for me.”

“First off, nearly everyone in Sigil joins a faction. Some believe what the factions say and some just need the allies. But if you do join, chose carefully. You also make enemies in a faction. And if you wind up wanting to change factions, you’ll probably be out of luck. Most factions expect a turncoat to pull the same on them as well. Only if you’re too valuable to throw away will another faction take you in.

Now for a quick history lesson. About six hundred some odd years ago, there were forty-nine factions. It was chaos with everyone carvin’ out their own little territories. So the Lady appeared to each of the factions and told them that their number was to be reduced to fifteen. They got a fortnight to prepare for war. Within two weeks, thirty-four factions had dissolved, died, or been assimilated by the remainder. All told, there were almost eighteen thousand casualties.”

Eighteen thousand?

“Eh, I’ve seen bloodier wars. So anyway, that’s why there are fifteen factions today. Next, I’ll explain the faction rankings. This is a quick one. Any old fool who joins a faction is known as a namer. They wear the colors and at least halfway believe their faction’s philosophy, but they aren’t willing to die for them. They’re willing to get into a fistfight over insults to their faction though.

The second rank is factotum. Those are the guys who do most of the grunt work. They’re employed full time by the faction and receive supplies and support from it.

The higher ups are called factors. They do most of the administration and day to day directing. They also oversee strongholds, as well as whatever scheme the faction currently has going on.

Finally, the faction leader is the factol. Factols are the most powerful mortals in Sigil, havin’ virtually the entire faction worth of resources at their fingertips. Sometimes they are the most devoted to their cause, but just as often they happen to simply be the ones with a knack for leadin’ and organizin’.”

“So it works like a big pyramid then.” I say. So far this makes sense.

“That oversimplifies it a bit, but yeah. Methods of advancement differ between factions after all. Two factions don’t even have any formalized organization at all.

Now, I figure I should list off the factions, their beliefs, major alliances, and bases of operation. I imagine that most of the factols have changed in the last two centuries, so I’ll refrain from mentioning them. I figure I’ll go alphabetically.

The Athar, or defiers as they are often known, are heretics who reject the gods. They figure that gods who need worship to survive, that is to say all of them, are unworthy. Naturally, they’ve made enemies of every god in the planes, as well as their priests. In spite of this, they’ve somehow managed to avoid pissing off any of the other factions. They’re based out of the Shattered Temple over in the Lower Ward, the one next to this one. Personally, I admire the gall of anyone who opposes gods, but I don’t figure that their intangible overgod actually exists.

The Believers of the Source, Godsmen they’re commonly called, believe life is a test. By passing the test, they believe they will ascend to a higher station. Now, if only they could agree what the tests are. With their belief that the gods are just ascended mortals, they get on great with the Athar. They don’t much care for pessimists though, nor anyone who doesn’t plan on self improvement. They’re prone to a sink or swim mentality as well. Generally cheery lot overall. They work the Great Foundry in Lower Ward.

The Bleak Cabal, often called madmen or bleakers, figure that there’s no cosmic truth or meaning at all. So they make their own. The bleakers run Sigil’s soup kitchens, orphanages, infirmaries, and asylums. They’re prone to goin’ mad, getting’ sick, and dyin’ young, so I guess in part they’re takin’ care of their own. The bleakers are based out of the Gatehouse, an old building they’ve converted into an asylum, orphanage, and almshouse.

After that, I guess there’s the Chaosmen. That’s the informal name, but then, they change the formal one fairly often. Probably about eight or so times in the last two hundred years. They believe that the universe is random and disordered, so they act on whatever impulse strikes at the time. That could be anything from paintin’ a mural to howlin’ like wolves to bitin’ a man’s ear off. They’re a riot to be around and are always around for a riot. They have a kinship to the bleakers as far as ideas go. The group is based in the Hive, the lawless area for which this ward gets its name.

The Doomguard or sinkers, are followers of entropy. They love watching the world fall apart and give it a push if they find it too slow for their liking. They love destruction, sometimes to an extreme degree. They run the Armory, based in the Lady’s Ward, the one past the Lower Ward, supplying the best weapons you can buy in Sigil. They make all manner of weapons, magical and mundane, ranging from knives to siege engines. Alongside the bleakers, dusties, and occasionally the Chaosmen, they form a sort of axis of chaos and insanity.

The dusties are next, but I already told you about them.”

“A refresher wouldn’t hurt Rob. This is a lot to process.”

“Fine, fine. The Dustmen are based out of the Mortuary and think that everyone is already dead. By purging themselves of emotion, they hope to achieve the oblivion they call True Death.

After them are the Fated, also called the heartless or takers. They believe in rule of the strong, that they’re entitled to whatever they can take from the world around them, whether through force or guile. They run the Hall of Records, in Clerk’s Ward, all the way across the city. They’re also the tax collectors. They definitely aren’t winnin’ any popularity contests, but they seem to know just the amount they can take without startin’ a fight.

The Fraternity of Order, or guvners, believe that the universe is governed by laws and regulations. The think that by learning them, they gain power and control. They run the City Court over in Lady’s Ward.

The Free League or indeps, get mad when called a faction. They don’t have a factol and get no representation in the courts. They figure the system to be too restrictive. Nobody has the answer, so might as well keep yer options open! They mostly exist as a group for survival, but they really aren’t organized to any real degree. They’re the reason that the Great Bazaar in Market Ward stays free and equal opportunity.

Then there’s the Harmonium or hardheads as most call ‘em. Oh boy, this lot. ‘Universal peace and harmony’ or else. Thing is, they’re the law around here. They’re based out of the City Barracks in Lady’s Ward. The hardheads have made enemies of just about everyone who’s ever broken a law.”

“You sound like you have a personal vendetta.” Rob’s words are dripping with venom.

“They’ve arrested me loads of times, or tried to anyway. They once arrested me for jaywalking. Jaywalking! I didn’t even have legs at the time! Their beliefs wouldn’t be so bad if they gave anyone a choice in the matter. If I just came from a feast, I don’t care how amazing yer stew tastes! Ye certainly don’t have the right to break my damn jaw, hold me down, and force it down my throat with a funnel!”

“Okay… anyway.”

“Right, right. The Mercykillers\ or red death, run the Prison over in Lady’s Ward. They seek justice, but it has nothing to do with morals. Instead, the Mercykillers purely follow the laws and relentlessly pursue criminals with an almost demonic fury. They form an orderly trinity with the guvners and hardheads, all believing in the importance of law and order.

The Revolutionary League are anarchists. They want to tear down the faction systems and other controlling bodies. Usually though, anarchists are prone to too much infighting to get much done. They’re their own worst enemy in a way. The hardheads can’t do much about them in any case. Rather than a factol, they have terrorist cells of three to eight members. The leader of each cell is part of a cell of leaders and so on up. Supposedly anyway, it’s just as likely that there are several unconnected leader cells or even a circular arrangement of infighting and incompetence. Still, they’ve had some major victories. I’ll tell ye a few later. Of course it goes without saying that they have no base of operations, the group’s everywhere.

The Sign of One or signers are in charge of the House of Speakers in Clerk’s Ward. They think that reality exists because they imagine it. From time to time, they do manage to erase someone from existence by thinkin’ ‘em away, but that’s just because they believe they can, the same way everything in the planes works. They’re an egotistical bunch for sure. The bleakers hate their opposing philosophy, not to mention the time they willed a bleaker factol to death.

The Society of Sensation comes after them. The sensates believe in experiencing all the sensations that the planes have to offer. Anything intangible may as well not exist. They run the Civic Festhall in Clerk’s Ward, as well as most of the entertainment and many of the taverns. Sensates get on well with the equally selfish signers. They’re the richest of the factions and most generous to their members.

Finally, we have the Transcendent Order or ciphers. They run the Great Gymnasium in the Guildhall Ward, opposite the Hive Ward. Ciphers strive to act without thought, seeking spiritual oneness with the universe. They promote the balance and harmony among the factions. Most factions like them enough to call upon them to mediate disputes, though the hardheads despise them. Probably because they accomplish the hardhead goal of peace and harmony by simply existing rather than forcing it on people.

Got all that?”

“Mostly. I think I get the power blocs at least.”

“Then state ‘em.”

“Defiers and godsmen bond over their lack of faith in the gods. Bleakers, dustmen, sinkers, and sometimes Chaosmen share a cynical, fatalistic outlook and all except the dustmen favor chaos over discipline. The fated and indeps bond over self reliance. Guvners, Mercykillers, and the Harmonium are all about order and collectively act to enforce the law. Signers and sensates share selfishness. All these blocs range from uneasy truth to outright hostility with each other. The anarchists try to bring it all down, including themselves, while the ciphers hold everything together.” I take a deep breath. “Is that all?”

“More or less. Any further questions?”

(X) – (Ask Rob a question.)

I think I’ve got everything. I don’t really know if I have to join a faction to get a magic teacher though.

[1] – Seek teaching from (name)
[2] – None of those sound appealing. Do something else.

***
No way to really make this infodump fun. Sorry about that and the wait. I had to look through one of the planescape manuals to make sure I got my facts straight.
No. 48961
Well. Let's see.

We have pretty great magic stats. Chances are that any teacher we'd come across, we'd be able to excel.

But, based on our current needs and resources, I am also 90% sure that the best choice here is--

[2] Yuki Moto!

At some point, we can probably work ourselves to having a better standing in the city. Afterwards, we could probably start working out this Magic thing on our own. Or find another instructor.

Besides. Fire is the best element for magic. Fireballs. Fireballs -everywhere.-
No. 48965
[X] Seek teaching from - [2] Yuki
No. 48966
[2] Yuki Moto!
Easy to get to teach and least likely to cause faction difficulties, seems to be a good place to start if nothing else.
No. 48967
[3]-Reiuji, of the Godsmen
Repeating my vote. As always, self-improvement and the happy, 'no I in Team' spirit is what wins me over.
Besides, their downside (lack of belief in gods) doesn't really matter in a place (Sigil, where we are right now) that no god can enter.
Well no God besides the Lady, but that one kills anyone who worships her so...
No. 48970
[5] – S, Yoshika’s mysterious master. I know nothing about this person, save that he or she is a necromancer.

Must raise adorable zombies.
No. 48971
>>48967

Agreed. The Godsmen faction always appealed to me, with it's 'improve yourself' mindset.

That said I dunno if a big-shot factor would want to take on some random schmoe off the street as an apprentice. On the other hand, if we approach her seeking advice on how to improve ourselves, and the best way to develop who we are, we might be able to sound her out in that respect.

[x] Utsuho Reiuji, for the above reasons. Though mainly for sounding her out. We might very well have to work our way up the ladder of instructors.
No. 48976
[3]-Reiuji, of the Godsmen
No. 48993
[3]-Reiuji, of the Godsmen
As the original option said, no idea how to approach this, but I think we can get somewhere with this.
No. 48995
Just noticed that Torment: Tides of Numenera kickstarter and that its way past its goal, this is a good day.
No. 48996
[2] Yuki Moto!

Because why not.
No. 48999
I love getting this many votes, but now I need a tiebreaker.
No. 49000
[32] Yuki Moto!
No. 49001
Called for Yuki
No. 49002
[X] Yuki

More approachable option
No. 49003
[3]-Reiuji, of the Godsmen
>>49001
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
No. 49004
>>49003

Eh, I voted for Utsuho too, but this might be a more reasonable option for this stage of things. Remember, we may be able to seek her out later, for more advanced training.
No. 49015
File 136514320789.jpg - (226.85KB, 1000x1000, Not your ordinary magician.jpg) [iqdb]
49015
[1] – Seek teaching from Yuki Moto of the Free League.

“I’m not really sure about joining a faction just yet. I’d rather see more of them in person first. For now, I think I’ll seek training from Yuki Moto of the Free League.”

“Starting small until ye get a handle on things? How practical of ye.”

“Is there a problem Rob?”

“Nah, I just prefer high risk, high reward. But I admit that that doesn’t always work out in my favor. Let’s go then, we and by ‘we’ I mean you, have a lot of walking to do.”

On the way, Rob tells me a bit more about the Free League. Both how not to anger them and a bit of a history lesson.

“Back during the Great Upheaval, that was when the factions wiped each other out, the indeps were sittin’ pretty. See, all those folk whose factions dissolved, they went to the indeps. Figured they’d be safe. Indeps don’t even claim to be a faction after all. That’s the one thing that sets ‘em off, besides tryin’ to force them to think or do anything. They get real mad if ye call ‘em a faction.

So anyways, back then their membership swelled to the largest of any faction ever at over a million members. Of course, most died off in the ‘Great Plague’ soon after the fighting was over. The few who are left from back then swear… well, I shouldn’t tell ye that, not within the confines of the Cage anyway. Better that way; keeps us from getting’ flayed.”

For the most part, Rob prattles on idly, occasionally pointing out a landmark. In Lower Ward, I see the Great Foundry. Hard not to, considering its spires tower over all of the other buildings, continuously belching out smoke. In the Lady’s Ward, Rob purposely directs me on a roundabout route to avoid the faction headquarters. It explains that the ward’s high class beauty masks a deadly game of subterfuge between the noble houses.

Eventually, after four and a half hours of walking, we reach the Great Bazaar. It’s not a single building like I was expecting. Rather, the Bazaar is made up of hundreds of tents and stalls, selling every imaginable ware. Weapons and armor, exotic animals, potions, foods and spices, art, instruments, they’ve got everything. I look around in awe, trying to see all the various wares. The place smells mostly of spices I don’t know the name of and cooking food. The street around me is crowded with a large, diverse group of people, loudly haggling or conversing. I imagine that it would be easy to get a temporary job here helping out some of the merchants.

I wander around for a bit, overcome by curiosity. Unfortunately, most things are outside my price range if I intend to eat anything the next few days. It doesn’t hurt to look though. One tent in particular catches my eye. The merchant, a man of about fifty, is selling fish out of large, blocky tanks of water. He claims that the fish are caught fresh daily from the Elemental Plane of Water. Apparently, some nobles have decorative tanks and ponds of them. That seems strange to me, but I don’t object. Most make for good eating too after all.

Exiting the tent, I collide with someone and drop my things. Rob rolls out of my bag, causing me to go scrambling after it. After retrieving Rob, I turn to see the person I bumped into. It’s a girl of average height, blonde, looks to be about nineteen or so. She’s wearing the same sort of drab clothes I am, with the addition of a black, flat topped hat.

“Sorry about that kid! Wasn’t looking where I was going.” She hands me my bag.

“Oi! Yuki!” exclaims the merchant, “Quit bein’ a bother and get that barrel o’ seawater I ordered. The tanks are getting’ low. Double time it girl!”

“You wouldn’t happen to be Yuki Moto, would you?” I ask. “I heard you could teach me magic.”

“Sure am!” she says, thumping a hand against her chest, “You chose wisely, coming ta me instead of one of those loony factions. I’d be happy ta teach a little, for the right price.”

“Time is money girl!” yells the merchant, “If any of these fish die, it comes outta yer pay.”

“Yeah, yeah old man!” she yells back just as loudly. She turns back to me and says “I’ll have ta teach you later, after my shift ends. Meet me by the Red Lion Inn. Should be easy enough for you ta find.”

Yuki takes off around a corner, her boss swearing at her to hurry up.

“Ye know she peeled ye right?” Rob idly asks.

“What does that even mean?”

“Pulled the wool over yer eyes, tricked ye. She stole yer coinpurse.”

Well then…

[1] – (SPD/AGI) After Her!
[2] – Wait here, she has to return to finish her job.
[3] – Screw it, it’s not worth the effort.
[4] – (Write in.)

***
There's always a catch. Always.

>>49003
If it makes you feel any better, Utsuho is still an option in the future.
No. 49016
[x] Write in!
-[x] CHA/INT: See if we can't figure out where she's going to and then beat her there.
No. 49017
[WIS] Figure out what direction she went in and wait for her to come back with the seawater and confront her then. Her hands will be full and she will be under time pressure from the merchant giving us an advantage.
-[CHA/WIS] Recover your stuff in such a way that proves your wits and doesn't endanger your training.
--[CHA] If she doesn't comply threaten to tell the merch what happened. He probably won't like having a thief in his employ.
No. 49019
[x] Write in!
-[x] INT: See if we can't figure out where she's going to and then beat her there.
-[x] CHA: Then turn on the charm and ask for our money back. We'll pay her after the lesson, not before!

Play to our strengths but make it a friendly game. No reason to ostracize a teacher.
No. 49021
With [18] WIS we weren't able to see that coming? FUCK.

WIS] Figure out what direction she went in and wait for her to come back with the seawater and confront her then. Her hands will be full and she will be under time pressure from the merchant giving us an advantage.
-[CHA/WIS] Recover your stuff in such a way that proves your wits and doesn't endanger your training.
No. 49044
Need a tiebreaker, or a consensus, or something.

>>49021
It was Perception based, of which you have 10.
No. 49045
[x]Write in!
-[INT/WIS]Evaluate the situation. That merchant might just be a setup to stop you from pursuing.
--[INT]Figure out where she's going, and attempt to beat her there.
---[CHA/WIS] Recover your stuff in such a way that proves your wits and doesn't endanger your training.
No. 49046
Calling it for:

-[INT/WIS]Evaluate the situation. That merchant might just be a setup to stop you from pursuing.
--[INT]Figure out where she's going, and attempt to beat her there.
---[CHA/WIS] Recover your stuff in such a way that proves your wits and doesn't endanger your training.
No. 49050
File 136524511581.png - (325.82KB, 800x1170, You seem mad.png) [iqdb]
49050
[X] - (INT/WIS) Evaluate the situation. That merchant might just be a setup to stop you from pursuing.
[X] - (INT/SPD) Figure out where she's going, and attempt to beat her there.
[X] - (CHA/WIS) Recover your stuff in such a way that proves your wits and doesn't endanger your training.

I need to think quickly. Beating her to her destination will be difficult if I don’t know where she’s going. I can’t just wait here though; she might not come back at all. This could all be a big scam she runs regularly.

“Excuse me, can you tell me how to get wherever Yuki is going?” I ask the merchant. He might be in on it too, but this is the only lead I have.

“What’s it matter to you?” he replies.

“She stole my coinpurse! I intend to get it back.”

The merchant sighs heavily. “That girl’s more trouble than she’s worth sometimes.” He gives me directions, saying that she will probably stop to talk to a few people on the way. “Try not to rough her up too much, I need her fit to work.”

I make my way to the water vendor. Apparently, there are enough people selling live fish for a dedicated water salesman to have a sustainable income. Drinkable fresh water being at a premium helps too no doubt. I wait for Yuki to arrive and buy a barrel of water before making my move.

I tap her on the shoulder. “Excuse me; I believe you have something of mine. I would like it back please.”

She turns and gives me what is no doubt intended as a winning smile. “You’re pretty sharp! You passed the first test.”

“What test? How does being robbed teach me about magic?”

“I’m testing you ta see if I should even bother teaching you magic.”

“That doesn’t answer my question.” Is she trying to trick me again?

“Sure it does!” Yuki sets the barrel down and sits on it. “See, you’re what we cagers call a Clueless. Maybe you’re a prime or maybe you hail from the outer planes; it doesn’t matter. It’s clear as day you aren’t a native.”

“How can you tell?”

“It’s the amazed gawking, like when you saw the bazaar. Cagers are much more jaded.”

“And what does my not being a native have to do with anything?”

“Clueless don’t live long here in the Cage. If I’m going ta train you, I want ta be sure you won’t be dead in a ditch within the week.”

“That… makes sense actually. Now since I passed your test, can I have my money back? I need it to eat.”

“The way I see it, I’ve taught you two lessons so far. Act like a native or you invite trouble and don’t blindly trust strangers. Anyone looking ta peel a clueless pretty much has a free pass by pretending ta be the one they’re looking for. Lucky for you, it was me you found.”

“Can I have my money back now?” She sure loves to hear herself talk.

“Sure, just one thing,” she reaches into her sleeve. “Hold Person.”

Suddenly, I can’t move, no matter how much I struggle. Yuki idly pokes my chest, causing me to topple backward. I crack my head on the cobblestones and see stars.

“Second test, if you can catch me by antipeak, that’s midnight to an outsider, I’ll give you your money back. If not, I’ll still teach you if you can find me before first light. Oh, and you should be able to move again in about five minutes or so.”

Yuki walks off casually, carrying the barrel of water. She’ll have it delivered before I can move again.

Well now I’m starting to get angry. Of course, I can’t show it at the moment. Honestly, I can see where Yuki is coming from, but that doesn’t make paralyzing me ok.

Now I have nothing to do for a few minutes but plan how to catch her.

[X] (Write in only.)

***
Yuki isn't doing this to screw with you, she wants to be sure you're worth the effort. Okay, not just to screw with you.
No. 49051
Tricky... okay, we need to keep playing to our strengths. We're smart, clever, and get along with people well. Let's solve the problem that way. Time for some detective work.

Basically, we go to the areas the merchant mentioned and ask about Yuki. Our Charisma should allow us to have success there, and we have the brains to parse out most likely avenues. So, we just go after Yuki the smart way.

And when we find her? We cover her eyes and go 'guess who?'
No. 49056
[Int] Go after her intelligently, start by using [Cha] and [Wis] to figure out her usual trail and hiding spots, and then [Int] to intuit where she's going to end up.

And of course, there are more than one ways to Hold a Person.

[Int] Set a dastardly(?) trap!
No. 49057
Guess it's best to play to our strength: blend in, ask around and figure out where Yuki might be.
No. 49059
[x][WIS] focus your will to shake off the spell RIGHT NOW and simply follow her direction
-[x][CHA, WIS, INT]If we don't catch, for some reason or another, gather information on her favorite whereabouts. If it includes her house, go and rob her blind. Eye for an eye.

We'll probably meet her before we finish stuffing her pockets-if we don't catch her right away.
No. 49061
[Wis] Focus your will to shake off the spell RIGHT NOW and simply follow her direction.
-[Cha,Wis,Int]Should that fail, begin seeking information from the marketplace regarding where she is or might go. Do be careful while doing so, however.
--Check to see if she took Rob.
No. 49071
Calling it for:

[INT/WIS/CHA] Detective work.
No. 49083
File 136534046091.jpg - (161.55KB, 600x800, Who witches the Witchmen.jpg) [iqdb]
49083
[INT/WIS/CHA] Detective work.

I try to force myself to move with all the willpower I can muster. When that fails, I try focusing and thinking what I suppose are mobile thoughts. Ty efforts are rewarded, I think. I probably got free around fifteen to thirty seconds before Yuki said I would. I’m not completely sure though.

I slowly stand up and stretch. I still have some lingering stiffness from the spell.

“She really pulled one over on ye.” Says Rob, “Been a long time since I last saw the old hold, tip, and run combo. If one thing’s to be said, girl’s got great taste in tricks…” I tune out the rest of what Rob is saying.

The bazaar is massive enough that I won’t find Yuki just by searching, but that shouldn’t prove to be a problem. I’ve got about six or so hours before antipeak, plenty of time for some investigation.

First, I go back to the fishmonger. He points me in the direction Yuki went. He also tells me that she runs errands for several other merchants. With something to go on, I set off with renewed energy.

I quickly find out that information isn’t free. The merchants I visit don’t care that Yuki stole my money. They expect me to do a few small tasks for them in exchange for Yuki’s possible whereabouts. After about two hours of making deliveries and failing to help move heavy objects, I’ve made some progress. I have the identities of a few of Yuki’s acquaintances and know a few of her hangouts.

“Yer doin’ it wrong!” Rob complains, “Don’t just ask for help; demand it! Be threatening!”

I don’t exactly look very threatening. A young girl can’t compare to say an eight foot tall lizardman or a demon with a hammer larger than I am tall. No one even seems to go out of their way to avoid either of those.

Yuki’s usual hangouts are some of the taverns lining the bazaar’s streets. In the first few I enter, asking about Yuki proves fruitless. None of her supposed friends there admit to knowing Yuki. I can tell that they’re lying and I get the feeling she probably got here first.

Recalling Rob’s advice about being assertive, I come up with a new plan. I may not be intimidating on my own, but I can pose as a servant of someone who is. I enter the next tavern full of confidence. Now, it’s time for some showmanship.

“I am seeking the one called Yuki Moto.” I loudly announce to the entirety of the tavern. The patrons quiet down, some of them turning toward me. Well, no backing out of this now.

“What do you want with Yuki kid?” a girl stands up and asks irritably, “The nerve of you, comin’ into our bar and makin’ a scene.”

“She owes my employer a sum of money. I have been sent to…” I crack my neck. “collect. If you do not divulge her location, I will be forced to take drastic measures.”

Several of the patrons leave immediately, as if they suddenly have something urgent to do. Others pale noticeably and try to make themselves seem smaller. Most try to ignore both the girl and myself, but seem ready for trouble.

“Gods’ blood Yuki, you’ve messed up big this time.” The girl whispers to herself.

“I find that I am rather short on both time and patience. Loose your tongue or lose it.” I take a step toward the girl.

“She’s got a room at the Slumbering Dragon Inn. That’s all I know, I swear!” the girl holds up her hands in a placating gesture. “Please don’t kill me.”

I leave without a word. That went oddly well, all things considered. I’d probably make a good actress.

“Good show kid!” Rob says, “They probably thought you were a debt collector for the baatezu.”

“I just figured that since Yuki works for a dozen different people, she has to owe money to someone.” I assume a baatezu is some sort of demon.

Onward then, to the Slumbering Dragon Inn!

Once I get there, I get directions up to Yuki’s room from the innkeeper. Not bothering to knock, I swing the door open. I actually get lucky for once; Yuki is here. She’s on her bed, tossing my coinpurse into the air and catching it. As I enter, she jolts upright.

“Found you.” I say, grinning.

“Well done! And with a few hours ta spare too. You’re made of keener stuff than most clueless.” She claps her hands.

“Now can I have my money back and when do we begin training?”

“When I said you had ta catch me, I meant catch.” She stands up on the bed. No problem, she shouldn’t be able to get past me.

“You’re cornered Yuki. Just give up.”

“Am I now?” She takes a flying leap, trying to go over my head. “Glitterdust!”

An eruption of blinding gold flakes hits me in the face. I fall to the ground, choking and coughing. I can’t see anything except dazzling light. Yuki makes her jump over me and takes off down the hall.

No, this is not okay! She wants to play at misdirection and tricks, does she? I’ll beat her at her own game! I’ll show you tricks Yuki!

Clearing the Glitterdust from my mouth and eyes, I make my way over to the window. I’m only one floor off of the ground, so this shouldn’t hurt too much. I jump out, trying to roll when I hit the ground. While not a soft landing by any means, I manage to avoid spraining anything. I quickly set Rob in front of the entrance and stand to the side of it.

When Yuki opens the door, I extend my leg out. “Hey Yuki!” I say.

She stumbles over my foot, tries to regain her footing and trips over Rob. Yuki face plants and I lightly pin her with my foot.

“Tag, you’re it!”I can’t help but laugh. That was really cathartic. I’m much less angry now.

“You win.” Yuki concedes, “I’ll teach you starting tomorrow.” She touches her mouth. “Damn, I chipped a tooth.”

Yuki winds up treating me to dinner. I insisted.

“So, since I’m stuck teaching you, what should we start with?” Yuki says between bites of chicken.

(Each will probably take about two days of time in story.)

[1] – Teach me Fire Magic.
[2] – Teach me Illusion Magic.
[3] – Teach me about Thieving.
[4] – Teach me about Sigil.

***
Sorry about the delay, I fell asleep mid update.
No. 49085
Ideally...
[2] – Teach me Illusion Magic.
[4] – Teach me about Sigil.
[x] Break to meet "S"
-[x] Either back for fire magic or find an advanced tutor for the damage spells

This build means we get the full course of non-combat enhancements, which plays into our build nicely without holding off the meeting too long. We don't know how long she's going to be waiting around after all. From there we can either come back or go to a more advanced trainer now we have credentials.

Also To the writer. Don't overdo it. We would much rather an update every 3-4 days and this story last a year(if not more) then the daily update pressure causing you to crash after a month.
No. 49089
[1] – Teach me Fire Magic.
[2] – Teach me Illusion Magic.
[4] – Teach me about Sigil.
Because advanced teachers probably won't want to bother with the basics. If they don't have too, that's another well-needed plus!

The order matters because if something important happens, we need to have the most important things first. Magic for well-needed damage. Illusions because even their weakest ones are versatile. And Sigil's lore becuase we need to stop being a clueless.
We came looking for a teacher and we've to use it at length (Thievery doesn't count, we don't have the DEX, SPD or PER to pull it off)
No. 49093
In this order!

[2] – Teach me Illusion Magic.
[1] – Teach me Fire Magic.
[3] - Teach me about Thieving
[4] – Teach me about Sigil.

Important thing first. Illusions complement our primary problem solving methodology very effectively. Fire magic is next because everybody needs to know how to cast a fireball.

Thieving is third because it is a /very/ useful skillset, especially when paired with illusion. We can use it to open locks, disarm traps, and improve our overall detective-ing!

Sigil is last because we can always just ask our Yin Yang/Magical Orb Friend for help.
No. 49099
[x] – Teach me Fire Magic.
[x] – Teach me Illusion Magic.

Self-defense followed by the detective paradigm we seem to be developing. Ron can tell us about Sigil, and we aren't quite ready to study thieving. Maybe later.
No. 49103
Need a tiebreaker between Fire and Illusion magic.
No. 49104
[x] Illusion.
No. 49105
Called for Illusion Magic.
No. 49106
[2] – Teach me illusion Magic.

If time permits:
[1] - Teach me Fire Magic

Guys, remember Ellen wanted us in about 3 days to get started Healing arts and any choice costs 2 days.
No. 49114
File 136542236553.png - (351.71KB, 600x660, Oh ho ho its magic.png) [iqdb]
49114
[2] – Teach me Illusion Magic.

“The spells you hit me with were Illusion magic weren’t they? I’d like to start with those. They seem like they would come in handy.”

“If you want ta get technical, they aren’t classified as illusions. I’m hardly an expert on how magic is classified though. What I would call illusion magic is anything ta misdirect and confuse, distract and trick.”

“Can we start tomorrow?” I’m really worn out from all of today’s running around.

“Sure thing.”

Yuki lets me stay in her room for the night, saying she has something to attend to. I turn in early and quickly lapse into a peaceful, dreamless sleep.

(Day 3)

“Rise and shine kid! Training begins after breakfast!” Yuki pokes me awake.

“What time is it?” I still ache from all of yesterday’s walking. If it’s going to be like this every day, it’ll take some getting used to.

“Maybe an hour after first light. Time’s a wasting.”

As we eat on the go, Yuki explains a bit of how magic works. “Magic has many forms, many styles. The two big ones I can help you learn are Wizardry and Sorcery. The two cast mostly the same spells, but in different ways.

Wizardry relies on magical formulas and takes smarts ta use. You load spells like a crossbow and fire them later in the day when you need them. This is the magic I use. It can be pretty mentally draining and if you try ta load more than you can handle, you’ll give yourself a headache at best. It’s a really boring slog ta learn, but has the biggest long-term payoffs.

Sorcery on the other hand, is in your blood. If you’re lucky enough ta have something magical in your bloodline that is. Sorcery is based on your willpower. You channel your inner magic, will something ta happen, and bam it does. It tends ta come naturally if you can use it, so you improve quickly. Of course, it’s not without its drawbacks. Spells tend to rarely be complex for a sorcerer. Sorcery tires your body as well as your mind. And if you screw up a casting, you’re gonna have a bad time.

Say you’re in a fight and get hit with an arrow while casting. If you’re a wizard, losing your concentration just means your spell fizzles out. You’ve still got an arrow in you of course, but you should pull through. Sorcery is much more unstable. You might catch fire, go blind, or even explode, depending on what you were trying to cast.

I figure I should test your potential in both and then we can go from there.”

We find an empty alley to practice in. Yuki hands me what I assume to be her spellbook.

“I figure we should start with something easy. First spell in the book should do.”

“Hmm, Ghost Sound. Sounds interesting. Can I get a demonstration?”

Yuki silently mouths the name of the spell and points at the wall to my right. The sound of a dog barking fills my ear. Of course there’s nothing beside me, the sound is an illusion. I can see how this spell would be useful for tricking a guard I was trying to get by or even just startling someone in order to get the jump on them.

Yuki explains what the runes mean and how they are pronounced. Apparently, it’s in Sylvan. She says that his version of the spell was developed by a civilization of elves to scare off hunters in their territory with the sounds of deadly predators. As a result, it’s particularly adept at mimicking the sounds of nature, namely animals. That doesn’t seem terribly helpful in a city like Sigil, but the spell can passably imitate some more bestial tongues.

After a good half an hour or so spent making sure I’ve got it down, I cast the spell. I manage to imitate the calls of some of the pigeons I’ve seen about well enough to gather a few.

“Seems you’ve got a knack for this! Now let’s see you try sorcery.” Yuki gives me a congratulatory pat on the back.

I don’t fare nearly as well at sorcery. After half a dozen attempts, I have a headache and I’ve only managed to make a few rat squeaks.

“Don’t worry,” says Yuki, “I hear it’s like that for lots of sorcerers starting out. Eventually, it gets to be easier than breathing manually.”

Stupid power of suggestion! Now I’m actually doing it. “Can we get lunch? I’m getting hungry.”

“Sure thing!” Yuki smiles.

I could probably take this opportunity to get to know Yuki a bit better. I also need to decide whether to focus on sorcery or wizardry.

(X) – (Ask Yuki a question.)

[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.
[2] – (WIL) Focus on Sorcery. It seems like it’ll pay off in the long term.
[3] – (INT/WIL) Why not both?

***
>>49085
Believe it or not, this is actually the least stressful part of my day.

>>49106
With the day spent chasing after Yuki, that leaves only the two days of training, then possibly right back to Ellen.

>>49093
>>49099
Rob's information is about two hundred years out of date. Yuki, as a member of the Free League, has access to their underground spy network and knows a good amount of the various factions' goings on. At the very least, she knows who the faction heads are, unlike Rob.
No. 49115
[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.
Obviously. We don't have time to focus on both nor nowhere near the WIL needed.
No. 49117
[3] – (INT/WIL) Why not both?
Multiclassing with wizardry and sorcery? Terrible idea! Good for spamming those low level spells though.
No. 49119
[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.

Yeah, stick to our strengths. For now, anyway.

(x) So, Yuki. You from Sigil? Or did you come here from somewhere else?

Just curious, really.
No. 49121
[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.
(x) So, Yuki. You from Sigil? Or did you come here from somewhere else?
No. 49126
[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.

Multiclass tends to cut on your leveling or something, IIRC.
No. 49131
Called for:

[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.
(x) So, Yuki. You from Sigil? Or did you come here from somewhere else?
No. 49139
>>49126
Humans can pick any two classes and not get penalties, I think. The problem with multiclassing is whether the combination makes sense or not.
No. 49140
>>49139
I take it that thief+mage is not a bad combo though?
No. 49174
>>49140

Ehhh, depends. It's not the best. A spellcaster can do just about everything a thief can, although it uses up spell slots, and a fighter combination is better for physical damage output. Still, there are some interesting concepts for a magical thief.
No. 49188
File 136559013682.jpg - (54.94KB, 400x500, I wish there were more PC98 pictures to chose from.jpg) [iqdb]
49188
[1] – (INT) Focus on Wizardry. I seem to have an aptitude for it.
(X) So Yuki, you from Sigil? Or did you come here from somewhere else?

Soon enough, we go and get lunch.

“Do I really have to eat this?” I ask, eyeing the fish soup Yuki said that I should have. It smells funny. Not to mention, fish soup seems sort of… redundant? Or something.

“Your mind’s not used ta magic yet. Fish is supposed ta be brain food or something. It should help with the headaches.”

“This smell is what’s giving me a headache.” Despite my complaining, I wind up eating the soup anyway. Considering I paid for it, I can’t really justify being picky. It isn’t terrible, but it also isn’t something I would have again.

“You know,” Yuki says, leaning back in her chair after we’ve finished eating, “I never did think ta ask you your name.”

“Eh, it doesn’t make much difference anyway. I don’t have a name.”

“How does that work? Seems ta me,” Yuki stretches, sighing contentedly, “you should’ve picked up a name out of convenience at some point.”

“Except I’ve only got memories of the last three days or so.”

“Geez, you really are a clueless. How’d you come ta me? I bet it’s been an interesting three days for you.” Yuki leans forward to listen to my tale.

I give her the super abridged version. “Well, I woke up in the Mortuary with a few mortal wounds. Rob helped me escape and when I got out I needed a healer and someone to teach me how to defend myself. I figured magic would be a useful survival skill. Ellen, the healer, couldn’t help me learn magic, so I came to you. And now, here I am.”

“Your storytelling skills are lacking.” Yuki deadpans. “And who’s this Rob bloke?”

“Oh, I guess I haven’t properly introduced the two of you.” I take Rob out of my bag and set it on the table. “Yuki, this is Rob. Rob, this is Yuki. I don’t want a repeat of the Ellen incident now, so be polite.”

Yuki stares at Rob with a puzzled expression. “This is Rob? You’ve got to be joking.”

“Rob is like a spirit trapped in the orb or something. Go on Rob, say something.”

Rob remains silent. Now Yuki is staring at me.

“Great, now she thinks I’m a lunatic. I hope you’re happy.”

“But you are a lunatic.” Rob says.

“Well how about that…” Yuki says thoughtfully.

“Why thank you Rob for speaking up.” I grumble.

“Impressed?” Rob addresses Yuki, ignoring me.

“Nah, not really.” Yuki waves her hand dismissively. “This is Sigil after all. I see weirder things just by crossing the street.”

“And I’ve seen stranger things than a thief who uses magic. Tell me, are ye self taught?”

“Sure am!” Yuki beams with pride.

“So Yuki,” I ask “you from Sigil? Or somewhere else.”

“Of course! I’m a natural born cager, never been outside the city. My folks came here from the Outlands.”

After a long lull in the conversation, Yuki asks, “So, back to that topic before. What should I call you?”

“I don’t know. Whatever you want I guess.”

“How about we just call ye Nameless?” Rob interjects.

“That’s not much of a name.” Yuki says.

I reply, “It’s as good of a name as any.”

“No,” rob responds, “it isn’t. That’s the point. It’s the exact opposite of a name. Names are just a form of identification. If ye don’t have a name, it’s that much harder to track you. And the way I see it, if you know yerself, a name is unnecessary anyway.”

“But I don’t know myself.”

“Then it works even better! Nameless should work until ye know who ye are.”

“I guess…” I don’t really have a problem with it.

“Then it’s settled!” Yuki says, “From now on, I guess we’ll call you Nameless.”

We soon go back to practicing magic. Practice doesn’t last long however. I soon discover that my hard limit for the number of wizard spells I can cast in a day is about six. Trying to load any more causes a stabbing pain behind my eyes and I nearly pass out. I suppose it’s good I learned my limits now.

“Good that you know what you’re capable of now, but try not ta overdo it.”

Yuki doesn’t appreciate having to practically carry me back to the inn. I skip dinner and go straight to sleep.

(Day 4)

Today passes in a blur. Yuki teaches me a Ventriloquism spell for throwing my voice and a Silent Image spell which creates a purely visual illusion. The two seem like they would work well together if I needed a diversion.

Yuki’s more flashy and complex spells prove a bit too difficult to wrap my brain around. She and Rob agree that I just need practice before I’ll start to get them. Yuki also points out that I’ll need a spellbook in order to reload my spells each day. I can’t keep borrowing hers forever.

We finish practice early, as I make a point of not overexerting myself.

I suppose I should decide what to take care of tomorrow.

[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)
[2] – Learn Illusion Magic from Yuki. (2 days)
[3] – Learn Thieving from Yuki. (2 days)
[4] – Learn about Sigil from Yuki. (2 days)
[5] – Seek out S, Yoshika’s master. (? Days)

***
I'm a bit surprised it took me this long to miss my daily deadline. Sorry about that. Of course, that was largely due to tiredness and pollen. Hard to focus on writing when you can't breathe after all.

>>49115
Stats tend to increase with use. Working at something results in improvement eventually.

>>49174
Magic is certainly the most versatile path, but here it comes with a lot of frustration and difficulty. I don't intend for any single skillset to be the pinnacle of power.

Regarding the issue of classes and leveling, there will be no levels. Classes are basically just skill packages that improve with use.

As for multi-classing, generally, you improve slower the more you focus on working on at a time. Just because you pick up several class packages doesn't mean you have to work on them all simultaneously. Additionally, most skillsets are compatible, barring certain exceptions. (namely paladins and clerics) Whatever you guys want to go for is fine, whether that means being an archmage, or a spell-thief, or even just trying everything out at least once.
No. 49192
File 136559728428.jpg - (8.28KB, 253x199, images (1).jpg) [iqdb]
49192
[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)
MULTIPASSCLASS
No. 49194
[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)
No. 49195
>>49188
No fire magic in the list like before? Not that I'm going to vote to do so now, but we'll need offensive magic at some point and we may as well get it from someone who already agreed to teach us.

[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)
No. 49202
[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)

I'm sure we can meet up with Yuki a little later.
No. 49206
>>49195
Sorry, screwed that one up. The one that says illusion should say fire.
No. 49213
Called for:

[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)
No. 49226
>>49206
Oh. I started the wave of votes and I'd selected 'Fire' if that were an option :(

Oh well, dual classing and THEN getting more exp benefits us in the long run, right? RIGHT?
No. 49248
>>49226

Well, from what has been mentioned so far, it feels less like a DnD class thing, and more of a Skyrim "get access to these tools, and level them up by using them" thing. So getting a few good packages and leveling all of them will be a plus as long as we don't get too distracted and start stuffing xp into everything.
No. 49432
File 136669139041.jpg - (119.01KB, 800x844, Sawthiscoming.jpg) [iqdb]
49432
[3] – Learn Thieving from Yuki. (2 days)

Pic more-or-less related. Please make it real.
No. 49455
Yo guys, the votes have been called already. Also, wanderlost, you still here?
No. 49456
>>49455
I'm still alive somehow. Right now is finals week for me and I've got a number of projects and medical issues going on as well. I might manage to get something out this week, but don't count on me getting back up to speed until around Monday.

>>49432
Did you draw that yourself or find it somewhere? Either way, you're now one of my favorite people.
No. 49462
>>49456

1d4chan is a magical place.
No. 49970
File 136895497956.jpg - (518.96KB, 1000x1093, Back from outer space.jpg) [iqdb]
49970
http://www.rainymood.com (for atmosphere)

[1] – I’m supposed to go see Ellen about learning the healing arts tomorrow. (1 day)

(Day 5)

“Hey Yuki,” I say over breakfast, “I’ve got a lesson on healing today, so I won’t be training with you today.”

“Where at?”

“A woman named Ellen said she’d teach me. She’s over in the Hive Ward.”

“I’ve been meaning ta get over ta Hive Ward myself.” Yuki leans back in her chair, looking up at the ceiling. “Had a few errands that I’ve been meaning ta take care of there. Guess I’ll walk with you and go about my errands while you get your lesson.”

Today’s weather is smog with a side of acid rain. It makes the four hour walk into a six hour one. Yuki is kind enough to supply a spare cloak so I don’t get horribly drenched.

We separate at the plaza in front of the mortuary, agreeing to meet back up here after we’re done with our respective tasks. I continue on through the dirty, slowly flooding streets toward Ellen’s hut. I can’t help but feel sorry for the people with nowhere to take shelter from the rain other than the trash piles. Ellen was wise to build her home on stilts it would seem. Flooding seems to be a very real danger. The ditches are filled with water running like streams.

I leave Rob outside the hut, though sheltered from the rain. The last thing I want is another incident between Ellen and Rob.

Ellen’s been busy it seems. Most of the alchemical reagents decorating her walls are now hanging down from the rafters, within arm’s reach of her cauldron. Coupled with the increase in humidity from the rain, it feels like I’ve stepped into a jungle. Smells like it too.

“Back for lessons?” Ellen asks, sticking her head out through the herbal canopy. She looks tired, as if she hasn’t slept since I left.

“I was, but you look too tired to do much teaching. Should I come back later?” I ask.

“Ellen is fine. Her mind is more awake than ever. Ellen’s body won’t collapse until the end of the day anyway. She knows her limits better than most.” Ellen beckons me forward, out of the rain.

“Well, if you’re sure…” I hang my borrowed cloak on a hook by the door and approach Ellen. She pulls another chair over from against the wall.

“Ellen will teach all she can. Fast learner, yes?”

“I’d say so.”

“Good!” Ellen claps her hands, “Starting now. Try to keep up.”

The rest of the day rushes by at a breakneck pace. Ellen attempts to compress years of medical experience into an eight hour timeframe. For the most part, she succeeds. I actually manage to process most of her explanations, though she occasionally has to repeat herself. Among other things, Ellen teaches me how to properly bind a wound, how to suck venom from a bite, and how to fix a dislocated arm. She can’t demonstrate any of these, so I have to make do with explanations only.

Ellen provides far more material information regarding medicinal herbs. She shows me which are good for clotting blood, dulling pain, and treating fever and shock. As Ellen shows me each herb, she explains where it can be found and the maximum dosing that can be given without serious health risks.

After the lesson is over, Ellen collapses back into her chair. I’m feeling a bit mentally overtaxed as well, though by no means as worn out as she must be. I’ll definitely need a good night’s sleep to process most of the lesson into something useful.

“Ellen is tired. Needs sleep. Then time for her to leave.” Ellen yawns and stretches.

“Oh, are you going somewhere? When will you be back?” I can’t recall her mentioning this before.

Ellen sits up. “Ellen doesn’t know where she’ll end up. She probably won’t be coming back. Stuck around far too long anyway. Now that Ellen helped someone, she can leave on a good note.”

“Thank you for the lesson. I really appreciate it.” I guess I should really get going so Ellen can sleep.

“Hold on.” Ellen says as I get my cloak. She takes a small bottle of clear liquid from a large shelf of similar but empty bottles.

“What is this?” I ask when she presents the bottle to me.

“Ellen’s special potion! Very rare ingredients! Last bottle.” Ellen looks very proud of herself.

“But what does it do?”

“Drink potion, live through anything!” Ellen throws up her arms in celebration. “For a day. Doesn’t heal wounds though. Or prevent. So heal before potion runs out.”

“Are you sure you’re okay with giving me this? It sounds valuable.” Not to mention, if I’m as immortal as I’ve been told, it will probably be useless to me. Then again, anyone I end up travelling with might have need of it.

“Ellen won’t need potion. Wasn’t planning on using anyway. Parting gift.”

“Well thank you. I’ll make sure to only use it if there’s an emergency.” I put on my cloak and pocket the potion. It seems that the rain has slowed to a drizzle.

“Goodbye. Remember Ellen’s advice: Powerful doesn’t mean happy!”

I collect Rob on my way out. It has fortunately stayed dry; otherwise I would be in for some complaining.

“I take it yer lesson went well.” Rob says. It seems oddly subdued.

“I think I learned quite a bit. Healing skills will certainly be useful in a lot of situations.”

Time passes quietly, the near-silence only broken by the plips of raindrops and the wet smack of my footfalls against the cobbles. Rob eventually speaks up, “For some reason, I find the drizzling rain… comforting. Like some half-forgotten memory from before I ended up like this.”

Rob’s acting odd, but I can understand what it means. The rain is making me feel calm as well. At the very least, it’s relieving my headache somewhat. I could easily fall asleep to this sound if my body were as tired as my mind. Walking back to Yuki certainly helps stretch my legs a bit. Hours of sitting made them quite stiff.

I meet up with Yuki at our agreed-upon place. “Ah, there you are. How was your lesson?”

“Good enough, I’d say. Finished with your errand Yuki?”

“Something came up, so I had ta cancel. I’ve spent the last few hours finding out what’s going on here in the Hive.”

“Anything interesting?”

“The only thing that really caught my ear was that the Dustmen are having problems with restless ghosts. They’ve hired an exorcist to clear out the nearest catacomb. It’s some Sensate woman, or so I hear.”

“Hmm… What shall we do now?”

[1] – Call it a day for today. I should get some sleep so I can process Ellen’s lesson better.
[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)
[3] – Learn Thieving from Yuki. This sort of skill set could be useful in a wide variety of situations. (2 days)
[4] – Learn about Sigil and the factions from Yuki. She should be able to give me the rundown of the factions and what’s going on with them. Definitely things I should learn before deciding which one to join. (2 days)
[5] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
[6] – Get Rob free from that orb. It’s waited patiently enough for the last few days.
[7] – What’s this about an exorcist? This sounds like it could be interesting.

***
I can't apologize enough for the delays. Going almost forty days without an update is awful.

That said, I probably won't be updating tomorrow unless I get the usual 6-7 votes. I know that not everyone checks every board every day.

We're finally at a point where more than half of the options advance the plot in some way. That should do wonders for giving everyone something to look forward too pretty soon, me included.

As a final note, have some Ellen themes. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tE3sSm6ybsg and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L69e3fwtXwI
No. 49971
[5] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
Since we're already here, why not?
No. 49972
[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)

Well, we do need to learn to fight.

Also, your return has me giddy with glee.
No. 49974
[5] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.

Sure, why not.
No. 49975
[5] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
No. 49976
[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)
No. 49978
[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)

This'll be the last of our lessons I think. After that, time to help our patient orb
No. 50000
Votes will be called in about 8 or so hours. In the mean time, I need a tiebreaker.
No. 50001
[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)

We might know how to heal ourselves, but before we truly start our adventure we should learn how to defend ourselves too. The best way to stay healthy is not getting hurt at all, and the best defense is a good offense.
No. 50004
Called for:

[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)
No. 50136
File 136948236435.png - (694.48KB, 1024x768, Also a candidate for protagonist.png) [iqdb]
50136
[2] – Learn Fire Magic from Yuki. I really do need to learn how to defend myself. (2 days)

“Could you teach me some fire magic?” I ask. “I’d feel a lot better if I knew how to protect myself.”

“Eh, I guess. Kind of hard while it’s raining though.”

“Tomorrow then?”

“When it rains, it often doesn’t let up for days. I guess we may as well start today. At least this way, there’s no chance of burning anything down if you mess up.”

“I doubt I’d accidentally set anything on fire.” Probably.

Yuki goes and buys a few candles, saying that they’re good to practice on. We find an alleyway sheltered enough from the rain to practice in.

“Alright. I figure we’ll start with sorcery this time. I really don’t want my spellbook getting wet.” She hands me a candle. “This will be a bit different than our other lesson.”

“Different how?”

“Fire is a much more primal force. It is one of the four elements which-”

“Six.” Rob interrupts.

“What.” Yuki responds. It isn’t a question.

“There are six elements, not four. How have ye gotten this far without knowing that?”

“Two of those don’t really count as-”

“Yes they do.”

Fine.” Yuki crosses her arms defiantly, “You teach the lesson then.”

“Maybe I will.” Says Rob.

“Could you two not fight? I don’t really care who teaches me.” I don’t want to listen to these two squabbling.

“Alright,” says Rob, “let’s get started. There are six elements which make up most everything in the planes. They are Fire, Water, Earth, Air, Positive Energy, and Negative Energy. They form three opposite pairs in the order I just listed. By blending, they make things which mix their properties. The first four are easy enough to understand in their properties. Fire is hot, bright, and weightless. Water is the element of liquids, flowing and changing. Earth is heavy, solid, and sturdy. Air is the element of motion, transience, and gaseous forms.”

“What about positive and Negative Energy? From the names, I would think that they’re just different forms of one element.”

“Ye’d be wrong. The Energies are absolute opposites, more so than the other pairs. They’re also a good bit harder to explain. Or, at least, harder to explain well. Essentially, Positive Energy represents growth and expansion while Negative Energy represents death and entropy. Now, most people will just say that Positive Energy is good because it heals while Negative Energy is bad because it kills. They’re wrong of course. Too much of either can kill. An excess of positive energy can cause a body to painfully mutate, even explode. Negative Energy meanwhile, can create and repair undead. The entire system is a bit more complicated than that, but if I gave a lesson on the planes in full, you’d starve to death before the halfway point.” Rob pauses. “Got everything so far?”

“I think so.” I’m still a little overwhelmed from Ellen’s lesson, but I’ll manage.

“Guess I’ll turn ye over to Yuki then, seein’ as she can actually use the spells you’ll be learnin’.”

“My time ta shine!” Yuki says, cracking her knuckles. “You look kinda tired, so I figure we’ll hold off on the explaining ‘till tomorrow. For now, how about some hands-on practice! Hold your candle at arm’s length and will it to be on fire.”

This sounds simple enough. Burn. Hmm… Burn! I close my eyes and visualize the candle bursting into flame. BURN!!! The candle refuses to cooperate.

After about ten minutes of fruitless effort, Rob speaks up, “Have ye tried getting’ angry? That’ll surely help!”

“I’m not in the mood to be mocked Rob.”

“No seriously, it actually helps with sorcery.”

“Believe it or not,” Yuki says, “it really does. But we should really call it a day. If you overexert yourself, your brain might actually cook itself. Plus it’s getting dark and I’m tired. We’ll finish up tomorrow.”

(Day 6)

“There are three parts ta any fire, magic or normal. First off, fire needs ta breathe. That’s the easy part. You don’t need ta work for it at all. Next comes the fuel. Usually, it’s wood or oil, something easy ta burn. That’s all well and good for convenience, but in a fight you make due with whatever’s on hand.”

“Like what?”

“Say you’re attacked by a heavily armored goon. Flesh don’t burn, nor does steel. So what do you use?” Yuki appears to actually be asking me.

“I’m not sure. My own magical energy?”

“Not exactly. With sorcery, you can burn away less material things. Hatred burns as hot as hellfire. Happiness works almost as well. If you get really desperate, even your own body fat works well enough. Not a good time, that.”

Rob speaks up, “Well I’ll be damned. Yer more than the two bit illusionist I took ye for. Most people who figure that trick out either burn out the first use or go mad when they run out of memories to burn.”

“How kind of you blob. Most of the others ta use this power probably didn’t have as much of a need ta keep breathing.”

“What did ye call me!?”

Better keep this from escalating. “No fighting. Yuki, what was the third part of casting fire?”

“That was uh,” Yuki pauses to retrace her way through the lesson. “Heat! Yeah, that was it! You need heat so the fire can catch. The higher ups in the factions and the rich have these special gloves that let them start a fire with a snap! The rest of us use existing fires or body heat. Kind of hard to use a tinderbox, cast, and not get hit at the same time.”

“Body heat?”

“You’d be surprised how much heat a body gives off if you condense it. Of course, you get really tired if you use too much. You have to eat more than a normal person just ta break even. Plus you learn ta hate the cold.”

By the end of the day, I’m cold, tired, and lightheaded. Even so, I’m satisfied with what I’ve learned. I can now shoot small gouts of flame from my palms. I keep burning my fingertips, but anyone looking for a fight is in for a nasty surprise if they get close.

(Day 7)

“You know Nameless,” Yuki says over breakfast. “I’m not made of money. Feeding and housing you every day is expensive. If you can’t start paying for your own room and board, I can’t stick around. From tonight onwards, you’re on your own for money.” She stands up. “I’m going to go see what sort of work is available. I suggest you do the same.”

I’ve got the day free today. I’m going to look for work of course, but I have a few other things I could look into before I do.

[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
[2] – Get Rob free from that orb. It’s waited patiently enough for the last few days.
[3] – What’s this about an exorcist? This sounds like it could be interesting.
[4] – Wander around aimlessly. Maybe I’ll find some places of interest.

***
I'm starting to get my rhythm back. I should be back up to full speed soon.
No. 50140
[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.

We've been putting this off for too long.

Also, Yuki's right. We really owe her big for this. We'll have to thank her in the future, pay her back as best as we're able.
No. 50144
[X] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.

Let's get this thing out of the way.
No. 50156
[x] – Get Rob free from that orb. It’s waited patiently enough for the last few days.

Let's not try its patience any further
No. 50178
[x] Free Rob

Probably a good idea. He's been very patient.
No. 50197
[2] – Get Rob free from that orb. It’s waited patiently enough for the last few days.
No. 50203
Called for:
[2] – Get Rob free from that orb. It’s waited patiently enough for the last few days.
No. 50412
File 137041011684.png - (117.43KB, 1131x707, This isnt even my final form.png) [iqdb]
50412
[2] – Get Rob free from that orb. It’s waited patiently enough for the last few days.

I head out in search of a blacksmith. Really, anyone with a hammer and chisel would do. Considering the general state of buildings here, there isn’t much demand for masons. Yes, a blacksmith will do nicely.

“So, where are we headed?” Rob asks.

“Just an errand. Something I’ve put off for almost a week.”

“The necromancer thing? You’ve put that off for quite a while.”

“Not just yet.”

“Wait, the only other thing is…”

Yes Rob?

“Yer really willing to free me?” Rob seems sincerely surprised.

“I said I was going to. Besides, you’ve been pretty helpful to me.”

“Ye better not be lyin’ to me. I’ll get mad.” Rob says unconvincingly.

“Right.”

We find a blacksmith easily enough. He’s willing to lend me a hammer for a few coins under the condition that I smash the orb myself, outside his shop. He seems to be expecting the orb to explode. Rob says that the orb should be inert, probably. Somehow, that isn’t very reassuring.

“So what, I just hit this and hope you don’t explode?”

“Pretty much. Not like you’ll be able to break it in one swing anyway.”

A dozen hammer blows later, there’s a small crack in the orb. Slowly, the crack spreads on its own. All at once, the orb crumbles to dust.

“Huh, so that’s what you look like.” I say to Rob. Rob looks to be a silver-green wisp. It’s blobby, with a trailing comet-like tail. It seems to be made of mist, faintly shimmering in the sunlight.

“What’s that supposed to mean? Whatever, don’t care. FREE AT LAST!” Rob’s voice is much clearer now, though still seemingly genderless. It takes off into the air, flying in rapid circles around me.

“Enjoying yourself?”

“Hells yeah I am! Being free feels AMAZING!”

“Well, shall we be off? There are a few other things I’d like to do today.”

I thank the blacksmith and return his hammer. Now, we’ll be off to-

it hurts It hurts. OH FUCK THAT HURTS! Precious essence spills out between my fingers good thing I’m a lefty. EVEN GODS CAN BLEED! i know but i’m different Shut up they’ll hear us. DO THEY STILL DRAW BREATH?

Did we get them are they dead? i got the cleric in the eye and the leg THE SWORDSMAN HAS BEEN CURSED FOR A THOUSAND GENERATIONS! That just leaves the-

pain Pain. PAIN! what’s this sticking out of my chest DIDN’T EVEN HEAR IT COMING! It doesn’t breathe I was distracted.

at least the others got out safe OUR FRAGMENTS ESCAPED! All but us damn we were so close this time…


What am I doing on the ground? And what was that?

“Hey, you still alive down there?” Rob floats above me, just out of reach.

“I feel like someone just held my head underwater for a few minutes. What happened?”

“You sort of bumped into me. I might of accidentally, um, possibly…”

“Say it.”

“Posessed you? Kind of.”

How?

“I’m a spirit and your head is pretty empty. That’s bound to cause a few strange interactions.”

“I saw something weird. Did you experience it too?”

“That was one of my last memories before I was sealed. You ah, weren’t supposed to see that.”

“I heard something about fragments. There are more parts of you?”

“Yeah, there should be…” Rob bobs back and forth as it counts. “Seven maybe? Eight including me I guess. They’re probably scattered across the planes now.”

“Wouldn’t whoever sealed you have found them in the last two centuries?”

“That’s the beauty of it. Each fragment only knows the location of one other. The two presumably still in the hands of my attackers don’t know the locations of any.”

“So where’s the fragment you know the location of?”

“Why do you care?”

“Because I’d like to help you retrieve them. It could be interesting. I’d get to learn about the world and expand my horizons.”

“You could easily travel without me, if that’s what you want.”

“You won’t be rid of me that easily Rob. We’re travelling companions for the long haul. Besides, anyone pursuing you would likely come after me anyway.”

“If you’re sure then. I sent my apprentice away with a fragment. She probably would’ve gone to either the Prime or the Outlands. Really though, it’ll be very dangerous searching for most fragments. You aren’t experienced enough to go adventuring just yet. You should probably think about joining a faction so you have some kind of support structure. Plus, the two of us hardly constitute an adventuring party.”

“It’s not like I was planning on leaving today.”

“So then, where to kid?”

“I’m thinking. Oh, and Rob?”

“Hmm?”

“Your accent is slipping.”

“Son of a-!”

[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
[2] – Wander around aimlessly. Maybe I’ll find some places of interest or a job.

***
>Implying full update speed.

Hope you guys like this one. It's been quite a while since some actual PLOT occurred.
No. 50420
[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.

Ok then.
No. 50422
[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
I like this update and the speed.
No. 50424
[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
No. 50426
[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should
be fairly close by.

Way overdue. But we should be ready now.
No. 50427
Called for:

[1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.
No. 50478
File 13706949078.jpg - (145.32KB, 850x994, Your princess is in another castle.jpg) [iqdb]
50478
1] – Look into the matter of S, Yoshika’s master. I might get some kind of reward or help for assisting Yoshika. The Swan Song Inn should be fairly close by.

“We’ll go to the Swan Song Inn. Hopefully S is still there and will offer a reward.”

We arrive at around lunchtime. Hopefully, I can get something to eat here as well as accomplish what I came to do. From the outside, the Swan Song Inn is suitably dilapidated to fit the name. Admittedly, so are most of the buildings here in the Hive Ward.

The inn isn’t half as bad on the inside as the exterior would suggest. Unfortunately, it seems I’ve walked in on an argument.

“You can’t kick me out! I already paid the fuckin’ rent!” A pink haired girl is yelling at a man I assume to be the innkeeper. Her voice betrays a lifetime of smoke inhalation. She looks young, but appearances mean very little.

“On the contrary Misty, I can do whatever I damn well please! See, I own this place. I could kick someone out just because I felt like it.”

“That’s not fair!”

Fair? I’ll tell you what’s fair. Your howling is driving my customers away. I’ve warned you three times. Three! I’m well within my rights to evict you.” The girl’s anger rapidly turns to desperation.

“Don’t do this to me. I have nowhere else to go.”

“You already tried guilt tripping me the last three times. Pack your shit Misty. I want you out of here in an hour.”

“Fine. Just give me next month’s rent back and I’ll be out of your hair.”

“Nope. I’m keeping it as repayment for all the customers you drove off.”

“This is bullshit!” Back to rage again it would seem.

“This is business. Never pay for a service before receiving it.”

“That’s all well and good for you Heartless Takers, conning people out of their money. Some of us expect some-” The girl lapses into a coughing fit.

“Get. Out.”

The two glare at each other, each daring the other to make a move. The girl seems ready to draw her knife while the innkeeper is prepared to grab a club near his arm. This could get really ugly in a moment. I should probably try to defuse the situation somehow.

Rob decides to speak first. “Excuse us. Would you mind taking some time out of your busy day of feuding to help us out?”

I can certainly think of a few ways Rob could have worded that better.

The innkeeper turns to us. “Ah, customers.” He waves the girl away, “Sorry you had to see that. What can I do for you? We’ve got rooms free and hot food available.”

“Lunch would be nice.”

Lunch winds up being some kind of pie filled with chicken and vegetables. Getting something to eat certainly helps my energy level quite a bit.

“So,” I say as I finish my meal, “the reason I came here…”

“Hmm?”

“I’m looking for a woman called S. She should be staying here.”

“Possibly.” He obviously expects me to pay him.

“If you could perhaps check?” I slide him a few coins.

“S was it? I think I remember someone by that name. Sensate woman with strange hair?”

“That sounds about right.” I would’ve said that regardless.

“She was an odd one. Paid in advance, but she’s barely used the room. Seemed friendly enough, but her companion kept to herself.”

“Companion?” This is new.

“Her hood covered most of her face, so I didn’t get a good look at her. Didn’t speak, but she had the most piercing red eyes and dark red hair. Probably some demon blood there.”

“When were they last here?”

“About four days ago. They got some job from the Dustmen to deal with some ghosts. Who would’ve thought eh? They looked like a courtesan and a demoness, not exorcists.”



What. Hold on. S, the necromancer who sent her subordinate to spy on and sabotage the Dustmen, is working as an exorcist for the Dustmen. What’s her angle? Maybe it’s a cover while the infiltration happens. That just leaves two questions. What has she been doing down there these last few days? And what should I do with this information?


[1] – I need to look into this immediately. I won’t be able to find Yuki before I do though.
[2] – It can wait until tomorrow. I should be able to muster more force by then, though I’m not sure if I’ll need it. I’ll be taking a gamble I might miss her though.
[3] – It’s not my problem. Hopefully whatever consequences it has won’t affect me.

(If option 2 or 3 is chosen, pick one of these as well)

[X] – Stick around here a while. There’s a storyteller over there, maybe she has something interesting to say.
[X] – Time to go job hunting. I’ll probably just wander around until I find something.
[X] – Rob probably has a suggestion for where I can get money.

***
Getting there, but it still took longer to finish this one than it should've.

Getting close to the end of thread one now. Autosage is 250 posts right? Maybe 2 or 3 updates until the next thread. Plus a summary/bonus thing in this thread, possibly some Q and A if you guys want.

Lastly, Waymaker and I are doing a thing together. >>/th/169401
No. 50479
[2] – It can wait until tomorrow. I should be able to muster more force by then, though I’m not sure if I’ll need it. I’ll be taking a gamble I might miss her though.

[X] – Stick around here a while. There’s a storyteller over there, maybe she has something interesting to say.
No. 50480
If we're not going now, we might at least do something that will make Yuki happy. As in, finding money so we stop freeloading on her.
No. 50482
[1] – I need to look into this immediately. I won’t be able to find Yuki before I do though.

I'd like to follow up on this.
No. 50483
[2] – It can wait until tomorrow. I should be able to muster more force by then, though I’m not sure if I’ll need it. I’ll be taking a gamble I might miss her though.

[X] – Stick around here a while. There’s a storyteller over there, maybe she has something interesting to say.

Let's go and talk to shady characters.
No. 50485
[1] – I need to look into this immediately. I won’t be able to find Yuki before I do though.
No. 50498
[2] – It can wait until tomorrow. I should be able to muster more force by then, though I’m not sure if I’ll need it. I’ll be taking a gamble I might miss her though.
[X] – Stick around here a while. There’s a storyteller over there, maybe she has something interesting to say.
Always listen to the story tellers, they might say something seemingly irrelevant only for it to be important later.
No. 50499
Called for:

[2] – It can wait until tomorrow. I should be able to muster more force by then, though I’m not sure if I’ll need it. I’ll be taking a gamble I might miss her though.

[X] – Stick around here a while. There’s a storyteller over there, maybe she has something interesting to say.
No. 50530
File 137093640368.png - (398.50KB, 720x900, Stay awhile and listen.png) [iqdb]
50530
[2] – It can wait until tomorrow. I should be able to muster more force by then, though I’m not sure if I’ll need it. I’ll be taking a gamble I might miss her though.

[X] – Stick around here a while. There’s a storyteller over there, maybe she has something interesting to say.

“Thank you for the meal and information.” I say to the innkeeper.

“Any time.” He says, pocketing the coins.

Hmm, I should wait until tomorrow to seek out S. If a fight breaks out, it would be better to have Yuki along. What to do now though. Hmm, there’s a storyteller here. I think I can spare some time to hear a tale or two.

The storyteller is a girl with ginger hair with bells in it, causing a faint chiming when she moves. It seems she’s going to start a new story in a moment. My timing is pretty good I guess.

With a deep, dramatic breath, the girl begins speaking. “Long ago, before you or I or any mortal who still draws breath, there lived a god. Though his name is lost to history, his deeds are deeply remembered. Indeed, he was mighty, more than a match for any who would oppose him. Each god he bested came to serve him or else be consumed. His battle prowess was known to be without peer.

Yet all things change with time. He came to be worshipped as a god of life as well as battle. For wherever he spilled divine blood, new life would spring up. In time, life eclipsed battle as the cause of his worship. With that, he changed, as gods are shaped by their followers. He no longer held so keen an edge in battle. Seeing his moment of weakness, the gods who once feared him attacked.

Even diminished, his power eclipsed theirs by an order of magnitude. He fought the gods off, time and time again. Yet with each victory, the god grew slower, less bloodthirsty. He was driven back, to the very pinnacle of the highest mountain in all the planes. And so, he came to infringe upon the territory of the Lady of Pain.

The god was trapped. Between a host of vengeful divines and the Lady, he chose what he believed to be the path of least resistance, the Lady. He chose poorly. In an instant, he was destroyed utterly. The gods who bore witness to the Lady’s power fled immediately. Thus was it made known that Sigil was forever barred to gods, lest they suffer the Lady’s wrath. As for the slain god’s followers, they were hunted down or converted so that he would never reform.

From this tale do we take three lessons. First, only the soon to be dead dare challenge the Lady. Second, an enemy forced to swear fealty remains an enemy, merely biding his time to strike when his master is weakest. Finally, every creature, from the lowliest worms to the highest among the gods, is beholden to the consequences of its actions. Eternity is the ultimate collector of dues, inescapable and inevitable.”

The girl finishes her story, smiling and bowing as some of the patrons offer her a few coins.

“That’s it for now everyone. I need to get something to eat and give my voice a rest.”

“You’re quite the storyteller for one so young.” Rob says to the girl as the patrons disperse. “Most of the folks in the business are wrinkly old men.”

“And you’re an odd pair, even for Sigil. A spirit and a vampire, who would’ve thought.” The girl replies.

“Eh? Vampire?”

“The kid’s not a vamp.” Rob says.

“Sorry, that was rude of me to assume like that. Before I put my foot in my mouth again, are the two of you adventurers?”

“Not really.” Not yet anyway. “Why?”

“You best not be trying to send us off on some fetch quest.” Rob grumbles.

“Not at all!” The girl holds up her hands in a gesture of placation. “It’s just, I collect stories. I figured you would have a few interesting stories from your travels. Things you heard on the road maybe, or tales of your own adventures.”

“That might be kind of inconvenient for us. For all we know, we might never come to this part of Sigil again.” Rob says.

“I could pay you for the trouble. Tell you stories, give you information as well. If you convince other interesting people to tell me some stories as well, I could think of a few more ways to help you out. What do you say? Please~”


(Ask the girl a question.)

[1] – Sure, why not. Heck, Rob can probably tell a story right now.
[2] – No, sorry I can’t really help you any.

And after that,
[1] – Time to go job hunting. I’ll probably just wander around until I find something.
[2] – Rob probably has a suggestion for where I can get money.

***
Shorter than expected. Done decently fast though.
No. 50532
[1] – Sure, why not. Heck, Rob can probably tell a story right now.

[2] – Rob probably has a suggestion for where I can get money.

No reason not to help her, and Rob knows the terrain better than we do.
No. 50535
[1] – Sure, why not. Heck, Rob can probably tell a story right now.

[2] – Job hunting
Safer
No. 50536
[1] – Sure, why not. Heck, Rob can probably tell a story right now.

[2] – Rob probably has a suggestion for where I can get money.

Probably better to ask Rob than go wandering around.
No. 50576
Called and writing:

[1] – Sure, why not. Heck, Rob can probably tell a story right now.

[2] – Rob probably has a suggestion for where I can get money.
No. 51117
File 137244960066.jpg - (298.68KB, 455x790, In case it wasnt clear.jpg) [iqdb]
51117
[1] – Sure, why not. Heck, Rob can probably tell a story right now.

[2] – Rob probably has a suggestion for where I can get money.

“Sure thing. We’ll help you out.”

“Really? Oh thank you thank you thank you!” The girl all but lunges at me, wrapping her arms around my waist.

“Ah…” This feels strange. Not bad-strange exactly, more unexpected-strange. What should I do?

“It’s a hug.” Rob interrupts, “Quit overanalyzing and enjoy it.”

“Do I detect a hint of jealousy Rob?”

A moment later, the girl breaks off the hug. “Sorry, that was a bit sudden wasn’t it?” She’s faintly blushing.

“A little…” kind of, maybe, more than a little.

An awkward moment passes.

“Say,” the girl says, “I never did catch your names. I’m Kosuzu!”

“Call me Nameless. This is Rob.”

“You’re the type that prefers to remain anonymous eh?”

“The kid’s got amnesia.” Rob says simply, “Hasn’t got a clue who she is. Or about much of anything else really.”

“Wow. That must be really awful, losing everything like that.” Kosuzu clearly wasn’t expecting that answer.

“I don’t really feel empty or broken or anything. Guess I don’t know what I’m missing.” Nothing too important I hope. I wonder how different I am from who I was…

“Ah, sorry. I didn’t mean to upset you. I’m pretty bad at first impressions aren’t I?” Kosuzu uncomfortably scratches the back of her neck.

“Immensely.” Rob bluntly states, “If you were the captain of the ship First Impression, you would’ve drowned after hitting a reef off the coast of Comical Ineptitude.”

“That’s going a little overboard isn’t it Rob?”

“What an impressive extended metaphor!” Kosuzu exclaims, seemingly not caring she’s been insulted. “I would truly love to hear a story from such an experienced word weaver.”

“Wait, what?” Rob is pretty caught off guard. “You don’t- Why would- I just- Eh?”

“Go on Rob, tell her a story.”

Please.” Kosuzu begs.

“Oh alright. Get comfortable you two.”

“What’s the story called?” Kosuzu asks.

“Funny, I don’t recall you giving the name of your story.” Rob replies.

“It was The God of Blood and Flowers.”

“Heh. You’re going to love this one then. It’s not got a title, but I would call it either The Lady’s Lover or The Gardener.

This is a story from the elder times, when the mortal races had not yet been formed from the elements, a time when only a few gods were more than animals or base components. In this time, there lived a gardener. While he was undoubtedly more powerful than any god born since, he preferred to be left alone to tend his plants. And tend them he did. He created most of the plants seen throughout the planes.

At this time, the first gods were settling into their respective planes. Sigil was the first such settlement to be completed. Once the enormous ring was finished, The Lady turned her attention outward. While she did so largely to prevent jealous gods from damaging her city, she found her eyes lingering upon the gardener. As to why, that isn’t clear. Perhaps she found his work impressive. Perhaps she saw him as an equal in some fashion. Perhaps she was merely bored or lonely.

Whatever the reason, The Lady lavished gifts upon the gardener. After a lengthy courtship from afar, The Lady did something she had never done before and has never done since. She invited the gardener, a god, into her city.

When they met at last, the gardener was struck by her beauty. There are many flower metaphors to be made here. You could say she had hair like fields of sunflowers. Violet eyes. The thorns of a rose. The inherent danger of the Venus flytrap. Mayhap some of those were even crafted in her image. What matters is that they fell deeply in love, to the point even the closest bonds in the stories of old pale in comparison. Destruction and Creation, a perfectly matched pair. He brought life into Sigil. She gave him new inspiration.

Of course, everything changes with time.”

Rob pauses dramatically.

“This is about where accounts start to differ greatly. Some say she killed him accidentally. Some say he betrayed her trust, maybe even cheated with some goddess. Some say he was killed in an invasion by jealous powers. Personally, I’d throw my lot in with one of two possibilities. Either he was deceived by another divine or his desire to capture her image went too far. The end result is the same. He created Razorvine, the creeping, bladed plant that you often see overtaking buildings. It’s a menace that’s nigh impossible to destroy, even for The Lady. Perhaps because it holds sentimental value for her.

Even accounts of what became of the gardener differ. He may have been killed, either by The Lady or by another god. He might’ve killed himself rather than be separated from his love. There are those who say he yet lives, hiding in shame or fear. Some even say he went mad, eventually producing the myriad of nightmarish plant life encountered on many a Prime Material world.

His present status is unclear, but what really matters is what he left behind. His old residence is a place overgrown with Razorvine. A place that The Lady and her servants stay far away from. A place now known as the Shattered Temple, home of the Athar faction. Notably it’s characterized by a large, highly magical tree at the center. As to what that means, well, who knows but the Athar?”

Once Rob finishes his story, Kosuzu hops up from her seat and applauds. “Very good! I haven’t heard that one before! It was a piece of history and it tied in thematically with my story. You’re really good at this!”

“Thank you, thank you! I’m here all week.” Rob floats to about eye level for Kosuzu. “Seriously though kid, stop fangirling. It’s unbecoming. And annoying. Mostly annoying.”

“Sorry…” Kosuzu seems to deflate a bit.

“It was nice meeting you Kosuzu, but we’ve got to be going.” I say, “I need to find a job so that I can pay for a room tonight and so that another companion of mine doesn’t abandon me for leeching off of her.”

“Hope to see you soon then.”

“Hold up a moment.” Rob says. “Didn’t you say you’d be paying us for stories Kosuzu?”

“Oh, right, I did. Yes. Right.” She extracts a pouch from one of her pockets and begins counting out coins. “Here you go! Twenty silvers! It’s all I have with me at the moment.”

“About what does that equate to?” I ask, pocketing the money.

“Ten coppers to a silver, ten silvers to a gold.” Rob states, “In terms of what that gets you, a silver is about a laborer’s daily wage, or roughly a day’s worth of food and a bed at the lowest quality. Basically it’s a week of decent food and a bed somewhere the roof doesn’t leak, assuming you buy nothing else. It should be enough to appease Yuki at least.”

“I could do with some spending money as well though.”

“In that case, I’ve got just the place!”

We say goodbye to Kosuzu and head out.

“So Rob, where are we headed?”

“A Fated bar by the name of One Eye’s. You aren’t likely to find a good paying job at this hour, so I thought we might try a little gambling.”

“Gambling? Isn’t that mostly just a way to lose money?”

“There’s statistics and strategy. I figure you’d like those things. They’ve got pit fights you can bet on too. You’ve worked hard most of the week and we could both do with some entertainment.”

[1] – (WIS) Sure, why not? I’m only wagering half of what I have at most though.
[2] – Not happening. It’s a losing proposition.

***
Sorry about the myriad of delays. I've been feeling sick and awful the last few weeks, so my motivation hasn't been the best. I also happened to get struck by inspiration anyway, so I'm writing another thing as well now. So that's a thing.

Optimally, I'm going to shoot for updating this and Fifth Age on alternating days. That should keep me from neglecting either and give everyone a full day to vote on each.
No. 51127
[1] – (WIS) Sure, why not? I’m only wagering half of what I have at most though.

We have a wisdom of 18. We got this.
No. 51138
[1] – (WIS) Sure, why not? I’m only wagering half of what I have at most though

What could possibly go wrong?
No. 51169
[1] – (WIS) Sure, why not? I’m only wagering half of what I have at most though.

So, I guess we're being smart about gambling what we have. Hopefully, there is a game where we can apply our smarts.
No. 51304
[1] – (WIS) Sure, why not? I’m only wagering half of what I have at most though.

I see no problems with this.
No. 51441
[2] – Not happening. It’s a losing proposition.

I do not trust cagers to pass up an opportunity to cheat some berk out of her money.
No. 52181
File 13742638035.png - (346.50KB, 1000x800, I also needed an excuse to post Yukari.png) [iqdb]
52181
Called for:

[1] – (WIS) Sure, why not? I’m only wagering half of what I have at most though.


Goddamn this is overdue. It feels like I haven't written any Planescape in months. I suspect that everyone, myself included, would appreciate a recap. That will start the next thread.

In the mean time, I thought I'd do like a Q&A session of sorts. You guys ask whatever questions you have, I'll answer them as best I can. I'll give a general idea of how things are going as well.

So yeah, ask away!
No. 52201
>>52181

Is our character an OC or an existing touhou? Because honestly, I just keep picturing us as a heavily scarred Mokou.
No. 52241
This might have been asked before, but I can't find it. Are we going on a class system, or is this all a skill-system? Like, are we getting classes in thief/wizard/whatever, or getting ranks in related skills?

Also, is there any way to raise our ability scores?
No. 52460
>>52201
Nameless is not an OC.

There are actually a fair few Touhous she might conceivably be. While her appearance doesn't quite match up to any of them exactly, that's probably due to the whole immortality thing. As for which characters she might be specifically, I'll leave that as an exercise to the readers.


>>52241
The system is pretty abstract. Essentially, there are no formal classes and levels. I suppose there are skills sort of. Basically, I have a vague idea of how proficient Nameless is at a given task when I take into account a combination of her stats and how much experience/knowledge she has of it.

As an example, Nameless has dabbled some in both sorcery and wizardry. She's practiced them about equally and can cast both at a novice level, but her Intelligence is much higher than her Will. As a result, she picks up on wizardry extremely quickly (based on INT, which is 18) but struggles with sorcery (based on WIL, which is 10).

On the topic of raising ability scores, they improve through use and training, much like skills. They're a good bit slower about it though. It takes a good bit more than a two day training session to boost a score even one point. There are however, certain ways to raise them quicker. I'm not going to spell those out for a variety of reasons.
No. 52461
File 137472653211.jpg - (239.05KB, 1007x1085, Cuteness overload.jpg) [iqdb]
52461
Now for a progress review, courtesy of Ellen.

“Doing well? Doing well. Better than Ellen at least. Could hardly be doing worse than Ellen though. Still have soul. But enough blathering. Progress review.

Helping zombie girl was good. Helping others is always a good deed. Good idea too. Unless a jerk or person is rusing you. Then, bad times. Zombie girl is trusty enough. Necromancer though, who knows? Be on guard for that one. Should be alright though. Not violent without good reason at least. Still, best bring a group.

Ellen has already said her part on vulgar spirit. As for pieces hunt, good learning experience. But dangerous. Avoid getting wrapped up in quest for power. And be ever wary.

As for Witch, very curious. Has secrets for sure. Secret secrets. Probably not betraying. Might see as a useful shield from attackers. Certainly not acting out of generosity. Best keep an eye out at least.

Overall, doing great! Just be sure to keep teammates loyal and happy. Good advice for everything really. And remember Ellen’s special potion! Might solve an impossible situation one day!
No. 52468
For those of you reading this in the future, thread two is here:
>>52466


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