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  #61  
Old Oct 8th, 2020, 08:13 PM
Reistar Reistar is offline
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Dead Man’s Happiness
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Ouzo seemed to be seriously considering Nao’s information, which she found gratifying. Her attention was pulled away, however, when Jie got up to engage the Minotaur in conversation. Oooh right into it, well done Jie Nao thought. Knocking back her drink she threw a “wait one moment” hand gesture at the other members of the group and wandered over to join Jie and the mystery Minotaur. ”Indeed, we couldn’t help but notice your commanding presence, sir. It feels as though you have many tales to tell and I have an overabundance of curiosity. Might we know more about you?” Nao thought a little bit of flattery might help. And she was genuinely curious.


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Last edited by Reistar; Oct 14th, 2020 at 09:53 PM.
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  #62  
Old Oct 9th, 2020, 07:11 PM
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Early Evening, 18th of August, 1885. Dead Man's Happiness.


The rear wall of the saloon had a staircase, a mirror behind the bartop, and a doorway into what was ostensibly the kitchen. What it did not have was a view Westward to catch the slowly sinking sun. However, the bits of sky visible through the front windows of the saloon took on a slightly yellowish hue as afternoon slipped into evening. During the short time the group had spent in this establishment a few more patrons had made their way through the doors before finding seats. Each one arrived alone and found their own space to drink, away from the crowds as much as was possible. They were clearly citizens of Yellow Ledge, none of them exuded the miners' unique flavor of rowdiness and anxiety. Eyes from all over the room naturally shifted towards the newcomers in town, both due to circulating rumors and their unavoidable presence.

”Your services are most kind, but I must insist on paying for services rendered.” Rhii said without noticing or caring that she was greatly overpaying…

The ghoul did a double-take, eyeing the jewel with only a moment's more hesitation before snatching it as quickly as his rotting hand could move. He shuffled into the backroom and did not emerge for a number of minutes...

left-aligned image
The minotaur moved not a single muscle when Jie approached, nor when he was greeted by the dark-skinned man. It wasn't until well after Nao added her voice that he slowly drained the last third of his drink, set the mug down on the far side of the bar, and finally turned to face the two of them. His gaze wandered over their companions before settling on the two of them, his face unreadable. "The demon hunters." It was a plain statement, spoken without a hint of emotion, good or bad. "I hope your demon-killing skills are better than your deductive reasoning. Although maybe that's what the Spaniard's for. He had me pegged the moment he sat down." The words spilled out of his mouth with a deep bass tone. If a tuba could talk you might guess it would sound something like him. A keen eye might have picked up the handle of a firearm peeking out from the trenchcoat on his left hip and from the size of it, it must be some kind of shotgun or heavy rifle. The rest of it was obscured by his body and the bartop. "I'm your babysitter. Knuddelmaus. I don't tell tales and the only thing you need to know about me is I work for Slatterbaugh. I can get you into the dorms if you wanna see the foremans' rooms or Nestor, the mage. He'll live, though he lost most of a leg. Brahms is upstairs, that's the survivor that laid eyes on whatever's in the mines. Good luck getting anything outta him, though. Poor bastard's been a nonstop raving lunatic."

During his introduction Knuddelmaus eyed Jie and Nao. A raised eyebrow suggested he might not be impressed with the two of them. "You two seem pretty wet-behind-the-ears. You have actually killed demons before, right? OOC: Since we haven't really discussed specifics, my assumption (which may be right or wrong depending on how you see your characters) is Jie and Nao have probably killed some demons, but not many. They may or may not have heard of these classifications before, I'll leave it up to you, though probably not all of them.Djinn? Lamia? Akuma? Gnoolies?" While his first few sentences could have easily been interpreted as downright rude, Knuddelmaus didn't seem to come off as intentionally insulting. Unintentionally insulting, perhaps. He was quite blunt and tactless, but there was no deliberate malice. At least not that Jie or Nao could tell from a first impression.


OOC
Map of Yellow Ledge

Lore entry unlocked: Knuddelmaus! (under Baron Slatterbaugh's entry)

 

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  #63  
Old Oct 11th, 2020, 11:32 AM
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Early Evening, 18th of August, 1885. Yellow Ledge, Western Protectorate - Gerhard Eisenhand
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"Do you think the Mage’s wards would be anything like your art?" Gerhard shrugged his large shoulders and replied to Jie's question, initially somewhat noncommittal. "No way to know for sure, but I doubt it." He paused for a moment before conceding to himself that Jie deserved a better answer than the barest of information. "It strongly doubt it. To the best of my knowledge only other jötnar, like me, are..." Another pause. This time Gerhard seemed to be struggling to find the best word to describe something. "...connected to Them. Even then, not all of us can imbue them. Takes practice, and training. Among other things."
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Old Oct 13th, 2020, 10:43 AM
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Li Jie. Late Afternoon, 18th of August, 1885. Yellow Ledge, Western Protectorate.
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Li Jie
Jie nodded his agreement to Gerhard’s assessment. Considering the little he knew of the big man’s art he had no way to compare… but. "You may learn something from the mage’s ways, that you might incorporate into our defences." He hoped that Gerhard would join him meeting Nestor. 'As might I.' went unspoken. The man from across the seas knew that a lot could be learned from one whose business was Hellstone, and that they might determine if there was a link between Hellstone and the demons. As he assumed there must be. He felt lightly encumbered with information in the coming conflict and wanted to be at the best advantage he could manage.



Jie didn’t like the way Knuddelmaus spoke, but then, he was taciturn himself, so he took it in his stride. He was also modest, so he felt no need to speak of his past victories.

"You two seem pretty wet-behind-the-ears. You have actually killed demons before, right?”

"We have. But we’ve heard those in Mine Twelve are different." Jie had no intention of trying to win the man over but his quiet, virtuous nature Using the Making an Entrance stunt for six points
to try to improve Knuddelmaus’ opinion of himself and/or
the group. Roll spoilered below
often attracted attention. He was an oddity in this land of braggarts and opportunists. He wasn’t here to make a name for himself, simply to succeed at the task at hand with honest competency and dedication.

Having Nao by his side boosted his confidence and he hoped she wouldn’t rise to Knuddelmaus’ blunt comments. "We want to meet with all the survivors." Jie glanced at the group, implying that they wanted to learn as much as they could, while he kept his attention on the Niútóu. But hearing about the insanity and lost limbs that had resulted from previous encounters with their prey, Jie worried for the others. He’d do his best to protect them. He’d stand in front and hold the onslaught and hoped his companion’s ranged retaliation would win them forward. Their simple acceptance of him, not to judge or revile, especially from a Japanese woman, whose people often maligned his own, meant the world. He considered this.

He’d done his best to leave the old stigmas behind as he sought to keep the good and discard the bad on his own road to self-improvement. In Australia, rough outback types would say, "Black, white, brown or brindle; I don’t care as long as they do their job." Said tongue-in-cheek, it was actually meant as a term of acceptance, camaraderie and endearment. Underneath, the statement implied a deep compulsion for survival.
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  #65  
Old Oct 14th, 2020, 09:54 PM
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Dead Man’s Happiness
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Nao met Knuddlemaus’ raised eyebrow with one of her own. Ah, that explains why he seems unbothered. “Babysitter” indeed. Her lips curled into a sardonic smile that was almost, but not quite, a sneer.

”Akuma, certainly.” She offered, replying to the Minotaur’s question. ”I’m not entirely certain of the class the one that Jie and I took out together but, what is the expression? ‘This is not my first rodeo?’” She winked at Jie, standing in solidarity with him. ”As for the Spaniard…” Nao trailed off and made a shrugging motion. ”If he were any sharper he’d cut himself. We are certainly a mismatched group, I will give you that. In another life, Jie and I here might have even been enemies as our countries were. But these are strange times, which call for stranger allies.” She gave Jie a small punch on the shoulder, acknowledging his statement about not caring as long as the job got done. ”Or Babysitters, she added, mischievously emphasizing the last word. ”I would certainly like to have a look at the foreman’s rooms,” the uncharacteristically outgoing Japanese woman finished.


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Last edited by Reistar; Oct 24th, 2020 at 11:26 PM.
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  #66  
Old Oct 17th, 2020, 12:08 PM
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Rhii, moving forward
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ouzo View Post
"From our accents alone, it seems likely that most of us are from overseas - myself included. Though, I don't know how many are so graced to have a home worth returning to. Is back home very far away, then? More than two days in an escorted carriage, no doubt?"
Rhii looked into her drink as she tried mostly unsuccessfully to hide the dark look on her face as she tried not to let her sadness project. ”Much farther, and I feel like the distance grows with each passing day.” She said, keeping her voice low to the point where Ouzo would struggle to hear her response to his question. ”I miss my family with every beating of my heart.”

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ouzo View Post
"Bah! Surely, you underestimate yourself!" His instinct was to give her a merry clap on the back of her shoulder, but on account that they barely knew the other, and that such a clap might've smushed the diminutive fae entirely, he refrained and instead just fidgeted about himself. "Perhaps you might find yourself to be healer and investigator both, should you learn anything from those miners' wounds and recovery. Come to think of it, they may be the next best source of information on our missing lovebirds, Henrietta and Rico - I should like to visit these miners myself. The company would be most welcome, but the decision is, of course, yours and yours alone." He raised his drink in a mock toast and nodded his head low, as if in a humble deference.
Rhii took another sip of her drink as she looked at the man. ”I suppose I can go with you to tend to the miners… I might be able to open a few pathways that you alone might not have been able to. I am told my reputation precedes me.” She said with a small laugh as she took a long pull of her drink, and set the beverage down half drunk. ”I suppose I am ready when you are. I find the portions in this world to be much too large for my tastes.” She turned and offered the tavern keeper a small, polite courtesy and turned towards Orzo.
Rhii's StatblockName: Rhii | Level: 1 | Health: 16/16 | Fatigue Accumulation: 0 | SP: 0 | Conviction: 3
Force: 14 | Speed: 12 | Defense: 12 | Toughness: 1 | Weapons: Damage: 1d6+3, Ballistic/Wound
RoF: SS
Range: 200 yards
Capacity: -
Reload: Minor
Resources TN: 13
Requires: STR 2
Longbow | Armor: 1I/2B, due to mythical nature does not protect against cold ironFae-weave Dress
ACC: 2 | COM: 1 | CON: 1 | DEX: 2 | FIG: 0 | INT: 3 | PER: 1 | STR: 2 | WIL: 4
Background: Random Benefit: Intelligence Focus (Research)
Focus: Intelligence (Occultism)
Talent: Extraordinary Power Replacement (Water Arcana)
Ability: +1 INT
Academic | Social Class: Upper | Profession: Focus: Intelligence (Medicine)
Talent: Extraordinary Power Replacement (Healing Arcana)
Expert | Drive: Talent: Emergency Care
Improvement: Reputation: Hippocratic Fae
Quality: Compassion
Downfall: Self-Sacrifice
Caregiver
Foci: Research, Medicine, Occultism | Resources: 8 | Medic's kit, medical/apothecary scrolls, paper and writing utensils, herbs for treatment, spare arrowsEquipment
Talents: Your magic can knit wounds and even restore life to the dying.

Novice: You gain two Novice-degree Healing Arcana spells.
Healing Arcana | You mystically wield water as a tool and a weapon.

Novice: You gain two Novice-degree Water Arcana spells.
Water Arcana | You can treat wounds and illnesses in the field.

Novice: You have trained as an emergency medical technician, and your aid is swift and sure. First Aid is a minor action for you.
Emergency Care | Powers: Healing Touch

Requirement: Healing Arcana (Novice)
Cost: 1-3PP
Time: Major Action
Target Number: 10
Test: None

Your touch channels energy to heals and and restores the subject. You can choose to spend up to 3 PP when you cast Healing Touch. For each PP spent, the target regains 1d6 Health. You can cast Healing Touch on yourself.
Healing Touch | Revival

Requirement: Healing Arcana (Novice)
Cost: 5PP
Time: Major Action
Target Number: 14
Test: None

Your touch helps restore life to the fallen. A dying character you touch after successfully casting Revival immediately regains 10 + their Constitution + your Willpower in Health. Since dying characters cannot take actions, you cannot cast this spell on yourself.
Revival | Fairy Lights

Requirement: Water Arcana (Novice)
Cost: 2PP per hour
Time: Major Action
Target Number: 8
Test: None

You illuminate the area around you with a steady light, similar to a torch or lantern. The spell illuminates a 10 yard radius centered on you. Fairy Lights lasts for 1 hour, but can be extended for 2 PP per additional hour.
Fairy Lights | | Water Geyser

Requirement: Water Arcana (Novice)
Cost: 4PP
Time: Major Action
Target Number: 12
Test: Dexterity (acrobatics) VS Force

A burst of water erupts from your outstretched hands. The Water Geyser is 8 yards long and 2 yards wide. Anyone hit by the blast takes 2d6+1 damage. Targets who make a successful Dex (acrobatics) test vs. your Force take only 1d6+1 damage.
Water Geyser |
Reputation: Hippocratic Fae (1) | Memberships: none | Ties: TBDOuzo, There are many senses that those whose blood runs towards the primal that mortals… And among those was the sense when others of fae blood that were in near proximity to Rhii. While she has never met Eoin, or even know the name of the man… She is aware of his existence. Every time it felt like that she was close to locating him, he would disappear as if into thin air. To say that it was quite frustrating was beyond words… For here was someone who shared a kinship that was actively avoiding her.

Complicating things is that the two share a similar bloodline… Albeit one that is fairly far removed from one another. While Rhii’s kin lived in the realm of the fae, a distant scion of her family set off into the mortal realm to make their living before travel between the realms became almost impossible. For mortal readers, they are typically viewed to be second cousins, once removed.
Eoin ‘The Wild Hunter’ Dermott | Relationships: (0/1)
Goals: Meet another full blooded faeShort-term Goal 1 | Find an expert in portal magicShort-term Goal 2 | Find a way homeLong-term Goal 1
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Last edited by KellyCat; Oct 17th, 2020 at 12:09 PM.
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  #67  
Old Oct 18th, 2020, 01:30 AM
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Ouzo
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhii View Post
”Much farther, and I feel like the distance grows with each passing day.” She said, keeping her voice low to the point where Ouzo would struggle to hear her response to his question. ”I miss my family with every beating of my heart.”
right-aligned image
"You know, there was once an English writer who said, 'traveling is the ruin of all happiness!'" He remarked with a flourish. But his attempt to be cosmopolitan seemed to miss its mark. The little fae was somewhat deep in her longing. Genuinely sad, even.

Well enough then, if they had a brief moment to themselves.

"Aheh, though I suppose it may have been said for reasons different from your own... You know, I traveled from home when I was just a boy, once, and just the once," Ouzo continued, quieter and with less of a melody to his tone. "And never back. When I think on home, all I can remember are the travelers. The spouses, sad to see their partners leaving on some necessary journey, all praying and clinging. And the excitement to see a cousin or niece or in-laws just passing through from the peninsula," he smiled between smokes, looking far away after some specific memory. "Home was..." The Spaniard twirled his cigarette hand as if the word he was looking for might fall out of the air. His grin faded. "... plain. It was an intermission. The place to pause between the rest of your life. When I was a boy, all I wanted was that travel. Like so many busy adults. And now...?" He smiled again, but it was different. The smoke seemed to slow in its drift, hanging lazily around him. "Like so much youth, I was the fool to ever have desired such things. But it is good to have something to miss, no?"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rhii View Post
”I suppose I can go with you to tend to the miners… I might be able to open a few pathways that you alone might not have been able to. I am told my reputation precedes me.” She said with a small laugh as she took a long pull of her drink, and set the beverage down half drunk. ”I suppose I am ready when you are. I find the portions in this world to be much too large for my tastes.”
"If you have learned this world's portions then your wisdom indeed deserves its reputation!" The good Doctor Ouzo's original smile returned. He raised his glass in cheers to Rhii's moderation, downed his remainder, then breathed heavily through the cheap alcohol's burn. "Ohoo! Yes, you are so right. There're enough of them to go after the mage and the foreman," Dr. Ouzo waved dismissively towards the others. "I'd best be ready now as well. Besides," he shook his now-empty glass, "Any more and I might get weepy and tell you more heartaches. Why make friends of a stranger over drinks, when we can just as easily get to know one another in mortal peril, fearing for our lives in a hellscape deep beneath the earth?"

With that, Ouzo stood from his seat and held out an elbow, as any gentleman would for a lady to walk together. Then he looked at Rhii, then back at his elbow, and then he frowned. Instead he held out his hand flat, palm up, and extended it to the fae... gentlemanly? He shrugged.


OOC
 

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Last edited by cottontailwind; Oct 18th, 2020 at 01:43 AM.
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  #68  
Old Oct 18th, 2020, 06:29 PM
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Early Evening, 18th of August, 1885.


Dead Man's Happiness
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Knuddelmaus watched Jie, the two of them regarding each other in silence for a short time. Even when Nao proffered her familiarity with the Akuma there was no response. After a deliberate period of quiet and indiscernible judgment the minotaur Opposed WIL (Self-Discipline)
Jie rolled 19
Nao rolled a 19
Knuddelmaus rolled a 9
apparently was satisfied, he nodded curtly and turned to fully face the two demon hunters. A "Hmph." was all Nao got for her quip at Dr. Ouzo's expense, and whether that was out of amusement or annoyance was impossible to tell. "So. Maybe not so wet after all. Good. The foremen and the mages share one of the dorms. I can take you there now, perhaps the giant wants to accompany us? It seems the others have business elsewhere." He gestured to the group, where it looked like Ouzo and Rhii were preparing to to head upstairs.

Before the group split Eoin made the rounds and quickly informed everyone he would not be joining them, saying something about "taking his chances on the lam" while the town was distracted with the group's investigation. And just like that the cryptid hunter disappeared, taking the road South out of town...


Rhii and Dr. Ouzo
 


Gerhard, Jie, Nao
 



OOC
Map of Yellow Ledge

Li Jie acquires a temporary Reputation for the remainder of the adventure: "Defender of the Innocent"!
Knuddelmaus' Attitude has been positively affected by the opposed roll!

 

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Last edited by MoldyNolds; Oct 24th, 2020 at 09:25 AM.
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  #69  
Old Oct 22nd, 2020, 11:23 AM
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Early Evening, 18th of August, 1885. Yellow Ledge, Western Protectorate - Gerhard Eisenhand
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Whatever Ragnar had expected to find in the dormitories, the seemingly giddy figure was far from it. The soldier in him was scarcely fazed by the sight of a heavily mauled man; he had seen and caused with his own hands far worse over his lifetime. The man's manner of speech however, troubled the Ragnar. Though the speech might have just been an affectation on Nestor's part, the soldier part of him recalled times long past. Field medicine, even in the times of Die Verwandlung, had occasionally required powerful narcotics and the effects he had seen in his men never failed to leave an impression on him. "Don't mind Nestor, he always talks like that. I'm Foreman Agave, and you must be the backup Slatterbaugh sent. My brother'd be happy to answer any questions you have, if you can stomach his answers." Internally Ragnar was moderately surprised, but he did his best to keep 'Gerhard's' face from showing surprise.

With a wry smile Gerhard chortled lightly. "Cavalry? That means horses ja? Not the first time been called a horse..." Glancing at his companions Gerhard considered what the Foreman had said. With a softer, more serious tone he placed a hand on Nao's shoulder. "Meisje, why don't you stay and speak met Forman Agave. The Chinaman en I can perhaps help Nestor get some fresh air..." He was reluctant to say it out loud but if the Forman was Nestor's sister and what he had already shared prompted such a response from her, then there may well be more he had yet to reveal. Separating the brother and sister afforded them a better chance of learning more. "
Dice COM vs. Agave:
3d6+2sch11 (5, 3, 4)+2 Total = 14
We be gentle with hem, I promise!"


Outside Gerhard was once again finding himself longing for the richer forests of his own him. This scrubland and pasture land was off putting in a peculiar way. 'Theres not enough trees, maybe that is it? wondered the large man to himself before turning to the wounded Nestor.

"Ik have worked in dangerous places before friend, but your work seem bijzonder dangerous. Hear you had some business keeping de mine workers safe? Maybe you feel like sharing how this happen. I hear much and little over these demons in America, but hard facts seem harder dan jouw hell-stone to find."

Last edited by Oghain; Oct 22nd, 2020 at 11:59 AM.
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  #70  
Old Oct 22nd, 2020, 02:36 PM
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Li Jie. Late Afternoon, 18th of August, 1885. Yellow Ledge, Western Protectorate.
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Li Jie
Jie took Nao’s playful punch with a sheepish grin. Such a beautiful and outgoing woman in his presence made him a little uncomfortable but he was growing accustomed to it. ”We might have even been enemies…” He couldn’t imagine being enemies with her but supposed that if his mother stood alongside him now it would difficult to reconcile the two. His brow furrowed at the thought of bringing his family into this emerging scenario, but then he considered that maybe his mother had grown horns too. That might lessen any required acclimation he thought with a barely supressed chuckle.

Taciturn though he was, Jie liked Knuddelmaus. Although the two might never be friends, there seemed to exist a grudging respect for one another, and that was good enough. Jie was grateful for whatever acquaintance or friendship that he might make, although his part-crazed, gruff countenance might not have given that away to those that didn’t know him well. The acquaintance of this massive, strong Niútóu who was a feature of this town and their patron was a boon and he knew it. He ambled along in step with Knuddelmaus towards the dormitories.

Inside, the one-legged mage, Nestor awaited. Listening to the man talk Jie thought to himself, ’That’s a strange way for a learned man to speak, but… I like it. It sounds…’ he couldn’t find a word in his mind but settled for, ’captivating and wonderful!’ Gerhard then took charge and brought the gentlemen outside to talk. He waited until the big man had finished, nodding as he listened to him. When he got a chance he affirmed Gerhard’s line of questioning and asked, "Please treat us as if we know nothing. Can you tell me what your purpose was in the everyday working of the mine?"

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Old Oct 24th, 2020, 03:06 AM
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Dr. Ouzo
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After gathering general information about the miners' wounds, Ouzo offered his thoughts to Rhii: "Hmph. A fractured mind. It only makes sense, considering these were everyday workers. Any great shock to their reality, such as an assault, may result in such trauma. Ah... that is, ahem..." Damn backwater swill. He tried to will the flush out of his cheeks. Of course that would be too easy. "... Ah, it makes sense that the most dramatic of injuries have either claimed their lives, or subsided to a longer term of care. Miss Rhii, what did you say is the nature of your healing craft? I cannot imagine resistance from the miners to our inquiries, but if fae magic can mend broken bone and regrow missing eyes, then we have no shortage of cooperation from the survivors. If you are so willing to share your aid, of course."

As they were heading up the stairs, the Spaniard gave a slow glance over his shoulder - less to look for anything and more to feign a demure moment. An open stairway overlooking a filled room would be such a wasted angle, after all. Unintentionally, he caught what appeared to be Eoin ducking out of the tavern, alone.

¡Hostia! Hmph. A genuine shame, that. Maybe it was just the cheap booze, but Ouzo's gaze followed the well-dressed Irishman out the door. He took a drag.

Slatterbaugh's men, ever-loyal to their purses, loomed about the second floor somewhat predictably. "Mind your hackles, now..." Ouzo said as he passed, inclining his head and leaving a wispy trail of smoke behind him, though he winked at the last of them.

The atmosphere of the third floor was different entirely. Quieter, almost. Noticeably quiet, like the silence of insects and birds in a forest when a predator approaches. When the glowing sound-ward came into view, and the bedridden, jostling survivor within, Ouzo stopped dead in his tracks. His eyes widened and some unspoken words caught in his throat. Only for the moment it took to process what he was seeing.

He knew this one was struggling, but however unexpected the scene, finding this here couldn't have been by coincidence. If he had seen this before, he said nothing about it. The good doctor returned to the present and Ouzo succeeded on his check vs. contagious mental fractures with a 16 vs. 11!whether or not all that cheap booze was any help to his quick recovery, he sobered instantly. Dr. Ouzo put out his cigarette on a nearby door frame and tossed aside the butt. "This is the patient, Brahms, yes? What can you tell me of him? What happened to him? ... and what sort of man was he? Before the attack? You must tell me everything you know. Every meaningless detail." He asked of the other miners, though Ouzo was fully fixated on Brahms. The directness of his words was almost un-Ouzo-like.

Regardless of what the other miners did or didn't say, Ouzo further asked of them, "Please watch for Brahms'... outbursts. If he has at all reacted well to your presence or your voices, then come in and calm him if you see him too agitated. But only too agitated. Please do not disrupt unless you must." He approached to the blue sound-ward and looked it up and down - not with any wonder or fear - but with an almost grim, sad resolve. He put his hand through it first, looking over how the faint glow splayed over the dusken skin of his palm, then the other side, and then entered himself. As he stepped into the room, somewhat to the side so as to move away from the door without directly approaching Brahms, he absently flapped his duster lapels open and shut, very neatly and in a practiced fashion. He clasped the coat's buttons and listened through Brahms' ramblings, then finally said, "My name is Dr. Ouzo. I am here to ask you some questions...
  • "Can you tell me who you are? What is your name? ... Your name is Brahms. You are Brahms. You are here and now, Brahms. My name is Dr. Ouzo," he'd repeat some of the outreaches in slightly different phrasing, every now and then, looking over the survivor's face to see if any different combination of words got a reaction.

  • "Do you know where you are? Where are you right now? ... You are in Yellow Ledge. The De- ah, the inn. A bed and room of your very own, with your friends right here, just outside." He wanted to say that Brahms need only call for his friends, and they'd come to him, but... for the sake of the inn, they'd sealed off the miners' cries altogether.

  • "Brahms, I am Dr. Ouzo. Tell me, do you work in Yellow Ledge? What do you do in Yellow Ledge? ... What do you last remember, in the mines?"

  • "What tunnel? What is at the end of the tunnel? Where are you in this tunnel?"

  • "What arrives at each place of civilization, Brahms? What brood? What does the brood herald?"

  • "What slumbers, that now awakens, Brahms?"

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Old Oct 24th, 2020, 11:28 PM
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Dead Man’s Happiness
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The minotaur reminded Nao of one of her childhood retainers: a gruff man who suffered no fools and would only give you respect when it was earned. Luckily they seemed to have convinced him they were competent, for now. She had a feeling Knuddlemaus could make or break their attempt. Jie’s reaction to her camaraderie amused her and she felt herself warming even more to the wild looking Chinaman. She thought he would understand what it meant to be an outcast.

Nao’s eyes widened as they crossed paths with the centaur, but she waved back and fixed the other’s appearance in her mind so she could find her later.

Nestor and his sister were definitely not what Nao had been expecting. She was intrigued, amused, and for some odd reason slightly annoyed by Nestor’s manner of speech. It was so far removed from everything Nao was used to that she really didn’t know what to make of it. When Gerhard and Jie hustled Nestor out to question him, she again had mixed feelings. She understood what they were doing and couldn’t fault their reasoning. On the other hand, it felt like they were trying to protect “the girls” from unpleasantness. Nao was no fragile flower, and if the scars Agave wore openly were any indication, neither was she.

Nao met Agave’s gaze, raising an eyebrow and shrugging. ”Boys.” She said. ”They mean well but subtlety and politeness are not exactly their strong suit. The man mountain is called Gerhard, the other is Jie and I am Nao.” She gave the Foreman a little bow of respect. ”We are indeed the backup, but we haven’t encountered anything like this before. The more information we have, the better. I was hoping to get a look at Foreman Henrietta’s room. I would not blame her if she decided she’d had enough and wanted to start over somewhere else, but if there was a more sinister reason she and her husband disappeared, some forewarning could be crucial.” She paused, giving the other woman a warm smile. ”And of course, if you have any warnings or advice they would be most welcome.” Nao hoped Agave would open up to her; she had a feeling she had a lot in common with the other woman.


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Old Oct 26th, 2020, 06:18 PM
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Early Evening, 18th of August, 1885.


Rhii and Dr. Ouzo
 


The Foremans' Dorms
 



OOC
Map of Yellow Ledge
Dr. Ouzo was granted additional information through the use of Ah-ha! (2) and Intuition Stunts!
Dr. Ouzo has the Stunt: Impress (+2) pending!


 

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Old Oct 29th, 2020, 05:11 PM
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Li Jie. Late Afternoon, 18th of August, 1885. Yellow Ledge, Western Protectorate.
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Li Jie
Seeing Nestor’s missing leg and the crutches, Jie thought firstly that he was lucky to have his health, and secondly, the demons were dangerous. To have bitten it off at the knee testified to sharp teeth and terrible strength. So many times Jie had been in mortal peril and he’d managed to keep all his limbs, although he couldn’t supress a quick glance down at his own legs, in part imagining having one of them gone.

The one-time gold prospector followed along amiably as Gerhard wrangled the Hellstone Mage and his sister apart. He wasn’t sure if it was just the big man’s way or a questioning tactic. Sometimes to get the true tale out it was best to separate the tellers and cross check their versions. 'But would they then question Agave? Or speak with Nao to see if the stories matched?' He raised a quick eyebrow at Gerhard in query.

Outside, Jie admired the view whilst Nestor spoke. It gave him an opportunity to avert his eyes while trying to figure out what the wizard was saying! Some things were clear even though the man’s poetic speech and slang might oversimplify or disguise meaning. But he learned some useful information nonetheless. Nestor wasn’t experienced like their group were. Most of the group had had dealings with demons before and it was a reassurance that they might not end up like the poor Hellstone Mage. It seemed he was only planning to be in Yellow Ledge for financial benefit, and only for a short time. Jie’s earlier admiration for the man and his unusual mannerisms was lessened upon learning of his lack of dedication. He frowned deeply.

’But an army..?’ Jie hoped the facts of the man’s story were as exaggerated as his phraseology. No matter how dedicated and competent their group was, they couldn’t stand for long against an army. Jie had a vision of all the ghosts and demons in hell, finding a way through to their world and marching out of the setting sun and across the scrubby plains to Yellow Ledge. Sure, they’d stand against them, and some of the townsfolk too. Posey. But without a great weapon or some unknowable rite, how could they hope to destroy or banish so many?

When Nestor began weaving patterns in the air, Jie gave his full attention. He was most interested in the art that protected against hellstone. From the corner of his eye he saw that Gerhard also watched intently. The pattern might have been lost in the blur of Nestor’s nimble fingers if it wasn’t for the multi-colored traces. Jie, the student of demons, could see patterns that might have some distant relationship to those he might use to bind a foe. 'Art of different nations share the same medium.' he thought to himself. Certain things were fundamental to any magical working, although they might have esoteric differences.

Jie spoke to the injured mage, "I’m sorry about your injury. Do you not have a ward to protect yourself?" Jie showed genuine concern. He also had more questions.

"Where are you from and where did you learn the mage's craft?" He was curious about the man’s mannerisms and if they came from a certain place. He was also curious if Nestor could teach him something. "Could you teach someone to do the same?" It could be seen plain on Jie’s face that he would not compete as a Hellstone Mage. His destiny lay beyond more adventurous horizons.

Also, what did the mage know about the foreman Henrietta? "Rita, where do you think she went?"
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Old Oct 31st, 2020, 07:42 PM
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The Foremans' Dorms
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Nao’s subtle attempts at flirting seemed to have gone right over the mine mistress’s head, which was a shame, because she was definitely enjoying the view of Agave’s posterior as she followed her up the stairs. She thought about trying again, since they were alone, but Agave seemed serious and a little nervous. This was definitely not the right mood for casual flirting, Nao decided, holding in a sigh of disappointment. Yes, try to cozy up to someone who has just had someone she cares about suffer a rather horrible experience. Baka! she berated herself silently.

She listened to Agave speak as she looked over the room, many of the furnishings feeling quite familiar to her. She glanced over when the dark skinned woman mentioned Henrietta and her husband disappearing. ”Yes, I know what you mean. Quite eerie. What do you think happened to them? Most demons tend to be very obvious; I don’t think I’ve heard of any causing unexplained disappearances.”

She cast her gaze over the room again. ”I could use the boys’ eyes too on this one, I think, but there’s no sense wasting time while I’m waiting. By your leave, I am going to investigate and see what I can find. I will try to disturb as little as possible.” She nodded to Agave and started carefully circling the room, not touching, just looking.

Nao observed several small things in the five or so minutes of walking the room. A harmonica and case lying on the floor by a music stand. A section of books in the reading area scattered on the floor, the space which they occupied in the wall now revealing a closed and locked safe. In the bedroom, clothes which seemed to be pulled from both sides of the room piled chaotically on the bed, next to a travel bag.

Hmmmm it’s almost as if Henrietta and her husband were in the process of leaving, but then vanished without taking their things. Agave said the husband, Rico, could play the harmonica quite well, so he wasn’t likely to have left that behind. I suppose someone could have come looking for something which would account for the mess, but you would think a thief would open the safe. Could they have been kidnapped? But why would anyone want to do that? Nao twirled her long hair through her fingers, frowning as she thought.



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