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Thread: D&D Snippets

  1. - Top - End - #301
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    Default Re: D&D Snippets

    Quote Originally Posted by lord pringle View Post
    Trust me in game he was a jackass but his diary made him a hero. A quote:
    Paladin: We are going up against a lich, everyone knows how to fight one right?
    Eric: My godfather was a lich.
    Paladin:How is that information useful in any sense of the word?
    Eric: I don't care! I'm a wizard!
    Lubbi: *facepalm*
    Teehee, that's awesome. You should work that into a snippet


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  2. - Top - End - #302
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    Default Re: D&D Snippets

    hey everyone, just taking a moment out of studying/finishing projects/papers/etc. to say that

    I have at least a few more snippets in the works.

    I have a snippet from Gideon

    I have a snippet from the "bone knight" that I've been posting so much about lately.

    I'm working on another snippet for Tylndyr

    and I may have another snippet for valek in the works as well
    they're all percolating

    haven't had time to read any snippets since my last post, but I will very soon.
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    Man, I'm loving all the snippets so far! And I've got a couple of my own to contribute (finally).

    First off, Abigail makes her triumphant return!

    Well, It Seemed Like A Perfectly Reasonable Idea at the Time

    (or, Threatening Half-Orcs for Fun and Profit)

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    Well, this certainly wasn’t what I expected. The shop had been completely out of herbs. In fact, all of the shops had seemed to have been pretty much out of everything.

    According to the herbalist, all of the town’s shops had slowly been losing goods over a long period of time. Then all of a sudden, everything had just vanished! I found that quite peculiar! After all, items weren’t supposed to do that! At least not mundane ones. It almost seemed like magic! Maybe it even was magic! At the very least, it warranted an investigation! That, and if I didn’t get those herbs to Gramma… Well, that just didn’t bear thinking about!

    And so I found myself wandering about the town, searching and searching for any signs of residual magic. I was just getting frustrated, when suddenly I was interrupted by a voice.

    “What the hell are you doing?” It was a little Halfling. It was the first time I had ever seen one up close. She had very short hair, one part blonde, the other dyed black. Or maybe it was one part black and the other dyed blonde. I couldn’t really tell. Either way, it was largely covered by a raggedy pale blue bandana that she had tied around her head. On her back was a tiny little bow and a quiver filled with arrows, and around her waist was a big, thick belt that housed a variety of daggers, lock picks, tools, and pouches. Her large, bright blue eyes seemed to watch my every move.

    She was so cute! I just wanted to cuddle her!

    “Hi there!” I was so excited to meet her. “I’m Abigail. Right now, I’m looking for magic! You see, all of the goods in this village have disappeared, and I’m trying to find out where they went so that I can buy some herbs for my Gramma,”

    The little Halfling lady just stared at me for a while. Finally, she asked me a question.

    “How old are you…?” she stared at me quizzically, her eyebrow cocked high. She sort of reminded me of how Gramma looked when I said something stupid.

    “Eighteen,” I replied, confused.

    “And you went out to buy herbs for your grandma, but since there are no herbs, you‘re looking for magic that may have stolen the herbs?”

    “Yep, that‘s about right,” I answered proudly.

    “What are you, stupid? Magic residue dissipates within minutes. Considering how long the stuff has been gone, there won‘t be any of it left,”

    I was completely taken aback. I had thought that it was such a good plan too. And just like that, this little Halfling had completely torn it to shreds. And she wasn’t even dressed like a witch!

    “Oh…” I was getting very upset. “Oh, Gramma is going to be so disappointed in me! I can’t do anything right!”

    “Hey, hey, don’t get worked up!” the little Halfling lady said agitatedly. “Geez, if you want to get those herbs so bad, just ask the half-orc who’s tied up in the square! He’s supposed to be the one who’s stolen all that stuff,”

    Oh, that just made me so happy. I gave the little Halfling lady a great big, grateful hug. She yelped in shock as I lifted her off the ground and spun her.

    “Ohthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou!” I squealed. “You’re a life saver! Thank you, Ms….?”
    “Cass,” the little Halfling lady mumbled. “And if you let me down, I’ll even take you there! How about that, eh?”


    Soon we found ourselves in the town square. And there, in the pillory, was the half-orc. He looked like he was sleeping. I shuddered a little when I saw him. His broad, bestial face was covered in scars, and his head was covered in long, dirty, white hair. His hands looked like they were as big as my face. He was the first half-orc I had ever seen, and he was a lot scarier than I thought they were going to be. Cautiously, I approached him.

    “Um, hello?” I squeaked. No response. Warily, I poked his stubby nose.

    Suddenly, his eyes burst open. I screamed.

    “UGH! WHAT DO YOU WANT?!” he bellowed. “HOW MANY TIMES DO I HAVE TO TELL YOU DAMNED PEOPLE THAT I DIDN’T STEAL ANYTHING?!?”

    “Sorry!” I whimpered. “I thought you did! I apologize! See, I’mnewtotownandsomeonetoldmethatmaybeyouwerethethi efandIthoughtthatmaybeyoucouldhelpmefindsomeherbsa nd-”

    “HEY!” he interrupted me, as he shifted his attention to someone else. “WHERE DO YOU THINK YOU’RE GOING?! DON’T THINK THAT I’VE FORGOTTEN ABOUT YOU!”

    I turned, and there I saw Cass, trying very hard to sneak away.

    “YOU THINK I DON’T SEE YOU, YOU LITTLE BITCH?! I’M GOING TO KILL YOU FOR PUTTING ME UP HERE!”

    I stared at Cass in shock.

    “You had an innocent man put in the stocks?!” I was horrified.

    “Innocent my ass! He was trying to kill me!”

    “ONLY BECAUSE YOU TRIED TO STEAL FROM ME FIRST, YOU LITTLE-”

    “QUIET!” I yelled, surprised at the commanding tone in my voice. “Quiet! Both of you! Cass, let the poor man out! He’s suffered a lot because of you, and he deserves to be set free,”

    “Are you crazy?” Cass was frantic. “He’s going to kill me!”

    “No he won’t,” I turned to the half-orc. “Because I’ll stop him if he even tries!”

    At that, they both burst into laughter. The half-orc was laughing so hard it looked like he was about to cry.

    “Ahahah! I like your attitude, little witch! Alright,” the half-orc chortled. “If you let me go, I promise that I won’t hurt the Halfling,”

    I turned to Cass.

    “You have lock picks don’t you? Let him out,”

    Reluctantly, Cass pulled out her thieves’ tools and unlocked the stocks. The half-orc threw off the stocks and stood up to his full height, massaging the feeling back into his wrists.

    He was really, really, really big…

    “Alright,” I smiled at both of them. “Now we can all be civil! I’m Abigail Weathers, and this is Cass,”

    “Kurgan, Son-of-None,” the half-orc bowed to me. “And while I’m thankful for what you have done for me, I can’t stick around,”

    “What? Why not?” I asked.

    “Because I’m an escaped prisoner right now,” he smiled wryly. “Besides that, I made a promise to some new friends of mine that I would break them out as soon as I got free…”


    And now, another NEW character! This is Tavor, the unluckiest lucky ex-gladiator, reminiscing about a reminiscence. Yes, really. No not really.

    Echoes of the Past


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    I watched his blood fall in droplets, splashing into the dirt, being drawn in by the embrace of Mother Earth. And soon, he had fallen too, first to his knees, and then face-first into the pool of his own blood. I grabbed him, and turned his face so that it faced mine.

    “ISAAC! ISAAC!” I screamed as I cradled his limp body. But my cries were for naught. He was dead even before he had hit the ground. He was dead as soon as I had slashed open his throat.

    The lash of the whip forced me to relinquish my friend.

    “Get up, boy!” the lanista spat as he whipped me again. “He is dead, and you are alive! Now get up, before I end your worthless life as well!”

    I screamed as I felt the whip against my back.



    I screamed myself awake as I bolted upright, and jumped in shock as a shape suddenly moved beside me.

    “Tavor…?” a woman's voice mumbled from next to me. “Tavor, are you all right?” My thoughts returned to me. Adina. My wife. My bed. My home. This was my life now.

    “Y-yes,” I stammered. “I am fine, Adina. It was just a dream,”

    She gave me a wry smile.

    “Do not lie to me, Tavor. That was obviously no mere dream,” Adina shifted herself upright. “Now tell me, or I’ll have you put to death for lying to a noble,” she smiled teasingly.

    “It was Isaac,”

    “Oh,” she laid her hand on my shoulder. We sat together in the bed for a while, until she finally saw it fit to speak once again.

    “You should not blame yourself for his death, Tavor,” she said. “You had no choice in the matter! You lived, and you managed to escape it all. He would have wanted you to be free, not to fight until you died! You were his friend after all! Do not chastise yourself up for living!”


    I kept mulling over her words long after she had fallen back to sleep. Was she really right? I had a title. I had a palace. I had a wife. I no longer had to fight. I was alive. I was living the dream of every gladiator, but why was I still unsure of everything? Would Isaac really have wanted this for me?


    Was this right?


    And finally, Varen's back!

    Family Reunions Are Always Awkward
    (or No, I honestly can't write a story without someone crying in it)

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    She said that she loved me. But after she had said so, it felt like our relationship had regressed. She hardly spoke. She never came close to me if she could help it. I was used to her shutting me out, trying to keep alone with her thoughts. But this was different. It almost seemed like she was trying ignore me, to forget that I existed, and to forget that she ever admitted to caring for me.

    It seemed that the closer we came to our destination, the farther she got from me. And now we were finally there. We were waiting in the Emperor’s castle, surrounded by guards, just waiting for him finally to show. And Natalia wouldn’t even look me in the eyes.

    I guess she didn’t have to, as the door suddenly burst open, the Emperor entering with long, confident strides. The guards snapped to attention, but the Emperor looked just as easy-going as ever. Smiling widely, he approached us.

    “Varen! Good to see you!” he grasped my hand and shook it vigorously. “How long has it been? Three years? Good gods!” He laughed warmly, then suddenly cut himself off upon seeing Natalia. He stood and stared at her for what seemed like ages, my hand clenched tightly in his. Finally, he spoke.

    “…Is that her?” he released my hand and approached her, still looking as though he were inspecting her.

    “I am Natalia, your highness,” Natalia smiled at him. It seemed like the first time I had seen her smile in weeks. It probably was.

    “It is lovely to finally meet you, Natalia,” the King took her hand and kissed it. “We have heard so much about you from Varen. My little daughter Sadia has been praying for your safety every night, for the past three years! I daresay that she will be incredibly excited to meet you,”

    “You are very kind, your Highness,” Natalia curtsied.

    This was too weird. Natalia wasn’t acting like herself. She was far too polite, too demure. As the Deathwind, she had never hesitated to curse the Emperor’s name, and now she was practically kissing his feet. And Natalia was never, ever, one to do anything like that.

    Was she trying to make a good impression, so that when we told the Emperor about her previously being a Crownbreaker, he would still heed her warning? Was there something he had that she wanted? Did she think he would only respond to polite behavior? Had she had some sort of epiphany while she had been keeping to herself? What was going on?

    “Ah! Please, do pardon my rudeness!” the Emperor said suddenly, as though he had just remembered something. “You two must have been traveling for ages! Come, we will talk more in my study. There are plenty of seats where you can rest there,”

    The King led us through the enormous, stone halls of the castle, surrounded by his retinue of heavily armed guards. For some reason, he seemed incredibly interested in Natalia, and chatted with her ceaselessly as we walked.

    “So tell me, Natalia, from what family do you come from?” the Emperor asked when we finally reached his study. It was an innocent enough question, but Natalia’s response was far from ordinary. Her demure little smile transformed into a devious grin.

    “I’m glad you asked, my lord,” she seemed like she had been waiting for that question all day. “I come from the Sen’Gowran family. My father was Adam Sen’Gowran, and my mother was Dawn Kolne. My uncle is Emperor Acton Sen’Gowran. Perhaps you’ve heard of him?”

    The Emperor stared at her, dumbstruck, for what seemed like ages. Then he suddenly burst into a fit of hearty laughter.

    “I knew you looked familiar!” the Emperor caught her in a tight embrace. “You look just like your mother! Hahah! And that joke there! Leading me on like that! Ahahah! Such a clever girl! Aha…”

    I realized with alarm that in between his fits of laughter were wracking sobs. Soon, he was crying openly, tears flowing down his face. Natalia looked completely stunned. Whatever she was expecting, it certainly wasn’t that.

    It certainly wasn’t what I was expecting either. I could scarcely believe my ears. Natalia, Tali, my oldest friend, my love, was royalty! It seemed like too much to believe. But seeing her there, next to the Emperor, there was no doubt. The familial resemblance was uncanny.

    “I thought you were dead,” the Emperor bawled. “I thought that my brother’s bloodline had b-been gone f-for good…”

    Natalia stood there silently. Then finally, she patted the Emperor’s back gently.

    “I… I understand,” her voice sounded choked. She seemed like she was about to cry as well. “But, I’m afraid that this is not what we came here for.


    “You see, my lord, we have come to warn you,”
    Last edited by Machuchang; 2011-01-17 at 02:09 AM.

  4. - Top - End - #304
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    STORIES!!!

    Ahem... Hi

    Quote Originally Posted by Machuchang View Post
    First off, Abigail makes her triumphant return!
    And triumphant she is! Loved it. She's so utterly clueless and yet so sweetly naive that it just works...

    Quote Originally Posted by Machuchang View Post
    And now, another NEW character! This is Tavor, the unluckiest lucky ex-gladiator, reminiscing about a reminiscence. Yes, really.
    I liked this - only I have to say that it didn't feel like someone reminiscing about a reminiscence. The part where he wakes up felt like what was happening at the time... unless the dream is him reminscing about a reminiscence. Not that it really matters mind you. I still liked it. Felt sorry for the poor thing too

    Quote Originally Posted by Machuchang View Post
    And finally, Varen's back!
    Yay! Yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay yay.

    Can you tell I like Varen?

    I do like the way you frequently have your snippets written from one person's point of view, but focused on the other character. It works really well, and I don't think I'd be able to pull it off which makes me jealous

    Okay... what do I write about next? I'm at work, I've still got about 2 hours before home time and I am struggling to stay awake. I thought I'd try my hand at a snippet to try and stay awake, but I don't know what to write about...

    1. Story relating to Rosalind (the castle ravenloft game)
    2. The second part of the story where Garret died
    3. How Terryn & Marlowe met
    4. Orrrr... how Terryn & Marlowe nearly got themselves killed and finally owned up to each other who & what they really were


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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    STORIES!!!

    Ahem... Hi
    Hello to you as well.


    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    And triumphant she is! Loved it. She's so utterly clueless and yet so sweetly naive that it just works...
    Just what I intended! It's good to know that I was able to pull it off.


    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    I liked this - only I have to say that it didn't feel like someone reminiscing about a reminiscence. The part where he wakes up felt like what was happening at the time... unless the dream is him reminscing about a reminiscence. Not that it really matters mind you. I still liked it. Felt sorry for the poor thing too
    Yeah... the snippet actually was written as though it were occurring at the time. I just wrote that he was reminiscing of a reminiscence to imply that where he is now is far removed from the event in that snippet. And I just wanted to say 'reminiscing of a reminiscence'. But yeah, what I said there is entirely wrong.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    I do like the way you frequently have your snippets written from one person's point of view, but focused on the other character. It works really well, and I don't think I'd be able to pull it off which makes me jealous
    I'm very glad that you think so. But I'm sure that you could pull it off.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    1. Story relating to Rosalind (the castle ravenloft game)
    2. The second part of the story where Garret died
    3. How Terryn & Marlowe met
    4. Orrrr... how Terryn & Marlowe nearly got themselves killed and finally owned up to each other who & what they really were
    All of them sound awesome, but those three in particular really get me excited.

  6. - Top - End - #306
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machuchang View Post
    All of them sound awesome, but those three in particular really get me excited.
    Would you believe I just got landed with work to do...

    And it's 4:25pm so I am outta here in about half an hour... on the weekend... maybe?


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  7. - Top - End - #307
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    Oh, dear. I haven't gotten Ezlo's glorious kobold charge written up yet, but I do have a newer story. When you make an insane, pyromaniac sorcerer angry or just get him acting on combat instinct, things go FWOOSH!

    Burning the Man who Burnt Us
    Or Oh my God that man made our bugbear explode.
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    Bubs was a bit weary. They'd traveled to the temple of Bloodlust, cleared it out and gotten the essence. Then it fell apart. Joe McBob (yes, that's really his name) was happy with his two swords. One, named Holy, was meant for fighting evil. The other, Unholy, was meant for fighting good. Bubs wondered briefly who came up with these names. He shrugged his shoulders, hefting the pack with Bubbles, his pet, higher on his back. His helmet, made from the skull of a tortoise and reinforced with adamantite, chafed slightly. They were making their way back toward the tower of the wizard who had given Joe, the succubus and Chrono this quest before they'd found him hanging from a cave entrance by his feet.
    Fortunately, they were close. Soon after this line of thoughts passed through Bubs's mind, they were knocking on the door and entering the tower.
    "So, how goes your quest?" the wizard asked. Bubs wondered if his name had been mentioned or if he was hiding it.
    "Well, we got the first three essences. And, in the temple of Bloodlust, we found these swords!" Chrono said, bragging a bit. The wizard was impressed and launched into a story about how the two blades were opposite twins of each other. Opposite twins? Twins are identical. Bubs barely paid attention to the history lecture.
    "I wonder why a skeleton would have these blades..." the wizard mused.
    Wait. Nobody mentioned the skeleton.
    "Who said anything about a skeleton?" Bubs asked.
    The wizard sputtered. After a few tense moments, he yelled "GET THEM!" and ran out of the tower. With a mental command, Bubs sent Bubbles to chase him down. The skeleton, all that remained of a wolf, leapt out of the sack, reforming itself to chase down the wizard. Three burly thugs flipped the table they were around, sending Bubs and the succubus sprawling. Chrono and Joe, however, avoided it. With a shout and a quick gesture, Bubs summoned a cloud of glowing particles around the thugs, accidentally catching Chrono in the cloud as well. Oops.
    The three front-line fighters attacked the thugs, quickly dispatching them. During the short fight, a loud scream came from outside. That'd be the wizard. Good dog.
    The four "heroes" exited the tower and were greeted by the sight of Bubbles proudly sitting on the wizard, wagging its skeletal tail.
    "Who's a good boy? You're a good boy! You're a good boy!" Bubs cooed as he petted Bubbles. With another gesture and word, his hands and eyes ignited and he glared down at the traitorous wizard. "Who're you working for?"
    "Hah! Like I'd ever tell you!"
    Bubs snarled, motioned Bubbles off the wizard and kneeled on the man's stomach, dropping into it. "I'll ask you again. Who had you do this?"
    "What the...!" Chrono yelled. Bubs's head whipped up, looking in the direction Chrono was pointing. A bugbear was charging down the hill at them.
    "BURN!" screamed the furious Bubs. A small glowing orb shot from his hand and struck the bugbear in the chest, creating a blast of fire which left barely a skeleton. In his fury, the rest of his body began to burn as well. He growled at the wizard beneath him "Tell me if you want to live."
    "But they'll kill me!" protested the now terrified man.
    Bubs looked at where the bugbear had charged from and saw three robed figures and three skeletons. The skeletons were moving toward them. Bubbles sprinted forward, attacking the center skeleton. Chrono took the one on the left and the ranger and cleric took the right. The necromancers each hurled a sphere which contained some weak spells, aside from one fireball that Bubs managed to avoid getting more than minor burns from. In return, he hurled a fireball which immolated all three necromancers. The three skeletons were a pittance for his companions to destroy.
    "If you tell me, I'll give you a quick death. If you don't, I'll take my time. Understand?" Bubs told the wizard. The flames wreathing him flared and he glared at the man.
    "Y-yes. I work for the Knights Templar. They want to free Ra-" the explanation was cut short as an arrow went through the man's skull. The group looked to where the arrow had shot from and saw a figure in golden armor retreat back behind a tree.
    Some men just want to watch the world shift uncomfortably in its seat.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kylarra View Post
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    I happen to like screwing around with Handle Animal.
    Red Mage, is that you?
    Quote Originally Posted by Rawhide View Post
    Now you're cranking it up to eleven.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dimonite View Post
    A week ago, I didn't know who you were. Now I know: you're the BEST PERSON EVER.
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    You seem to be having trouble with the idea that a rulebook can contradict itself, because it shouldn't, but...WotC.


    Absolatar by Teutonic Knight.

  8. - Top - End - #308
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    Default Re: D&D Snippets

    I've thoroughly enjoyed reading all snippets, they're all very well written


    Maleidolon
    I Hear The Voices
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    The ground was slick with blood and crushed ice. Slashing wounds upon the earth and mangled forms bore silent testimony to the struggle that played out here.

    An armoured body heaved with exertion - aching arms barely managing to grip a pitted sword. Each breath drew shards of hoar-frost into lungs, stabbing like too sharp daggers.

    It was sprawled there, mewing pitifully like a newborn lamb. Stupefied and affixed to the earth by a mindblast, its left arm hung uselessly at its side - a thin strip of muscle the only bridge between shoulder and forearm.

    Shaira raised a gauntled fist for the coup de grace; her face contorted by battle lust. Madness, fleeting yet present, roiled behind auburn lens.

    Like lightning, the naked blade hewed off the creature's head. A face, animalistic yet unnatural with great unblinking eyes stared from a tiger's visage.
    It was a rakshasa.

    Shaira remembered it well, it who chose to devour innocents and consume their forms. She had being hunting this particular quarry for an age, and time had not been kind to her. Once hale, her red hair had turned a wan silver, and though her figure was still trim, muscle had been replaced by fat.

    Dark circles bespoke of the fatigue gripping her then, and she longed to hug her daughter, left in the local inn and lower her aching body in a bath of hot water.

    Wiping her sword upon the body of the dead rakshasa, she drew flint and stone, intent on purging the mortal form of the creature with cleansing fire. Fire was the great purifier, and with its spark, this village would be re-consecrated.

    Unnaturally flammable, the creature's body soon sent putrid fumes skyward, choking Shaira. Yet, she gritted her teeth and steeled her resolve. Once began, she would see a quest to the very end.

    As the flames sputtered out, she stalked upon the squelching mud to the tavern at the edge of the village. A sudden gust of chilling wind threw her tattered cloak like great, sullen wings behind her.

    Something was not right. The tavern was too silent. Too dark. She kicked open the door, calling her daughter's name. The sudden adrenaline giving her vitality and energy.

    She raced upon the stairs - heedless of the silence - boots thudding against the oak-wood, its rhythm matching the pounding of her heart.

    Shaira hesitated at the portal to her room. Anxiety warring with courtesy stayed her hand. The silence could mean that everyone in the tavern was fast asleep, she did wish not to disturb her daughter or the other guests. It would be poor form.

    Finally, Shaira opened the door. Maternal instinct won. Her daughter still lay in the bed as she left her. Angelic, Shaira's daughter was the only light in a room cowled with shadows and darkness.

    Some noise startled her daughter, who sat bolt upright upon the bed and looked in the direction of Shaira. Shaira's daughter did not reach up to wipe the sleep and drowsiness from her eyes. In fact, she did not appear to blink at all.

    "Creature", Shaira's daughter spoke in a volume far too low and sonorous to have come from a child, "why do you wear my mother's form?"
    To see the world in a grain of sand
    and Heaven in a wild flower
    To hold infinity in the palm of your hand
    and eternity in an hour.

    - William Blake, Auguries of Innocence

  9. - Top - End - #309
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    @ (the) Lady Moreta

    the second part of the Garret story, definitly, I'd enjoy being able to return to this thread with that on top of everything else I have to read.

    or the castle ravenloft game, I'm ever fond of stories of "the devil Strahd"


    EDIT: am I going insane from exams? or do we have people writing gareth snippets now?

    or did I just forget who's character he was during the exam mind fog?
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  10. - Top - End - #310
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolmorph View Post
    Oh, dear. I haven't gotten Ezlo's glorious kobold charge written up yet, but I do have a newer story. When you make an insane, pyromaniac sorcerer angry or just get him acting on combat instinct, things go FWOOSH!
    Indeed they do! I found myself getting to the end and going "oh dear..."

    The ending felt a little - jerky though I have to say. It kinda felt like you were in a hurry to finish and just tacked something on at the end.

    Quote Originally Posted by Amiel View Post
    I've thoroughly enjoyed reading all snippets, they're all very well written


    Maleidolon
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    The ground was slick with blood and crushed ice. Slashing wounds upon the earth and mangled forms bore silent testimony to the struggle that played out here.

    An armoured body heaved with exertion - aching arms barely managing to grip a pitted sword. Each breath drew shards of hoar-frost into lungs, stabbing like too sharp daggers.

    It was sprawled there, mewing pitifully like a newborn lamb. Stupefied and affixed to the earth by a mindblast, its left arm hung uselessly at its side - a thin strip of muscle the only bridge between shoulder and forearm.

    Shaira raised a gauntled fist for the coup de grace; her face contorted by battle lust. Madness, fleeting yet present, roiled behind auburn lens.

    Like lightning, the naked blade hewed off the creature's head. A face, animalistic yet unnatural with great unblinking eyes stared from a tiger's visage.
    It was a rakshasa.

    Shaira remembered it well, it who chose to devour innocents and consume their forms. She had being hunting this particular quarry for an age, and time had not been kind to her. Once hale, her red hair had turned a wan silver, and though her figure was still trim, muscle had been replaced by fat.

    Dark circles bespoke of the fatigue gripping her then, and she longed to hug her daughter, left in the local inn and lower her aching body in a bath of hot water.

    Wiping her sword upon the body of the dead rakshasa, she drew flint and stone, intent on purging the mortal form of the creature with cleansing fire. Fire was the great purifier, and with its spark, this village would be re-consecrated.

    Unnaturally flammable, the creature's body soon sent putrid fumes skyward, choking Shaira. Yet, she gritted her teeth and steeled her resolve. Once began, she would see a quest to the very end.

    As the flames sputtered out, she stalked upon the squelching mud to the tavern at the edge of the village. A sudden gust of chilling wind threw her tattered cloak like great, sullen wings behind her.

    Something was not right. The tavern was too silent. Too dark. She kicked open the door, calling her daughter's name. The sudden adrenaline giving her vitality and energy.

    She raced upon the stairs - heedless of the silence - boots thudding against the oak-wood, its rhythm matching the pounding of her heart.

    Shaira hesitated at the portal to her room. Anxiety warring with courtesy stayed her hand. The silence could mean that everyone in the tavern was fast asleep, she did wish not to disturb her daughter or the other guests. It would be poor form.

    Finally, Shaira opened the door. Maternal instinct won. Her daughter still lay in the bed as she left her. Angelic, Shaira's daughter was the only light in a room cowled with shadows and darkness.

    Some noise startled her daughter, who sat bolt upright upon the bed and looked in the direction of Shaira. Shaira's daughter did not reach up to wipe the sleep and drowsiness from her eyes. In fact, she did not appear to blink at all.

    "Creature", Shaira's daughter spoke in a volume far too low and sonorous to have come from a child, "why do you wear my mother's form?"
    This is... exactly the sort of mind-bending, what-the-heck-just-happened ending I would expect from you

    Very well written, loved the twist at the end. I like I'd like more


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  11. - Top - End - #311
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    And here's Gareth with another combat snippet!

    Steel Song
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    From the records of Manus Inkfingers, official scribe and aide to General Tialla Hammerblade of Karvak, dated 217 RR

    "Sending a strike force was a bold move. Not like Khyber at all. Manus, if you were a betting man, would you say that they acted without orders?"

    My lady, Tialla, was often given to these sorts of questions. She was always curious, despite her sole occupation being the ending of lives and the parting of property from its rightful owners in the name of Karvak. That she was beautiful was not in doubt at all; tall, regal, with long blond hair and soft blue eyes, she could have been a bard or a spy, but instead she hid her curves under armor and let her hand rest on one of the two swords at her belt, smiling a small smile. She turned and grinned widely at me.

    "They're coming to take the relay codes from us. One of them is coming for me. I know. She told me."

    And as if on command, the door was kicked open. In front of it was a half-elven youth, barely even a man, with a shock of short brown hair and green eyes. His body was covered in what looked like sheathed daggers, but we knew better - they were longswords, shrunk by magic and kept in astounding numbers on his person, each a trophy taken from a worthy foe.

    "I got this one guys. Move on ahead!"

    His voice was arrogant, cocky, but strong, and he took a step into the room with his hands empty. The young man moved with an assured grace that put into mind images of cats stalking their prey, or of the swooping dive of a dragon that has seen its foe.

    "You're Tialla, right? The Lady of War and Karvek's biggest asset? I've been looking for you for a long time."

    My lady laughed joyously, without a trace of irony or contempt.

    "I'd expected you to be taller, Sword Saint. Aren't you supposed to be taller than a giant?"

    The youth grinned impishly, "Call me Francis, ma'am, and you'll find that rumors of my god-like properties are greatly exaggerated. Who's your friend with the parchment? Some kind of scribe?"

    "He is, at that, Francis. He'll not interfere."

    As if by unspoken signal, Francis sprinted into the room, twin blades leaping from their sheaths into his hands. Before he'd taken two steps, the swords had left his hands, flying end over end at Tialla, and two more soon joined them. Tialla drew her own blade from its sheath, ducking low at the same time to dodge the first flying blade. She advanced, swatting another blade out of the air and rolling her shoulder pauldron forward to deflect the third. She rose, caught the fourth blade, and threw it aside in time to meet the Sword Saint's furious charge, whipping her sword in front of her in time to block a vicious double slash. The impact drove her back half a foot; clearly, the half-elf was stronger than he looked.

    I have seen warriors battle for their lives before, witnessed the cautious dance that precedes the violence. There was none of that here; the Sword Saint threw himself at Tialla in a storm of steel and fury, blurring the air gray with his sheer rapidity of his strikes. Tialla gave ground before him, bringing her blade up again and again for desperate parries, letting blows through to crash painfully against the plates of her armor. A song of steel filled the air, like bells crying out in beautiful pain.

    Even still, blows crept through; a slice so fast as to be barely seen clipped off the top of her ear. A crushing blow stove in the side of her breastplate, cracking a rib. She gritted her teeth through the pain, giving way slowly, letting her opponent exhaust himself.

    The two of them broke apart after what felt like an age, panting and smiling goblin grins of joy and blood lust.

    "You're good," the youth said eagerly. "You're damn good. I've never had a fight like this!"

    "You're pretty impressive yourself, Sword Saint. Sadly, I know something you do not."

    His grin widened, "Let me guess, you are not left handed?"

    "No. This is not a longsword."

    My lady stepped forward with a sweeping slash well short of the Sword Saint, and as her blade came around, it lengthened, becoming a slightly shortened claymore scything for his neck. With a yelp, he threw himself backwards, leaning back and throwing his momentum into a flip that took him over Tialla's next blow, an ankle swipe. He spun to the side as she whipped her claymore back and brought it crashing down. Tialla used her heavy blade like it was lighter than air, moving it without a care in the world in ways that would make a giant swordsman green with envy. The Sword Saint bent his body in increasingly astonishing ways to stay out of the path of its knife-sharp edge, keeping himself a hair's width away from a swift end.

    Then he did something unexpected - he attacked, his form blurring as he shouted a command word in elven. I recognized the haste spell affecting him as he threw himself into the assault, leaping into the air for a series of spinning slashes that came down like hammer's blows on Tialla's blade. His feet hit the ground and he advanced like a metal hurricane, forcing her to block blow after blow with her wide blade.

    Why do this? It wasn't getting him anywhere. Unless...

    The spell wore off and my lady lashed out with her booted foot, catching the elf in the chest. He spun as he fell, his swords going flying out of his hands, and she brought her weapon up and around - only to see Francis catch himself, regain his feet, and draw a single weapon in one smooth motion. As her claymore hit the floorboards, he brought an adamantine longsword down on its blade, cracking the already weakened metal in half and spraying its shards all over the floor. His free hand reached out and drew Tialla's other blade from her sheath, and he flicked it across her throat with a backhanded slash. A neat red line appeared on her throat, which then became a rapid gush of blood. For a moment I could swear that the blade he'd done the deed with pulsed, as though breathing.

    "What will you do now?"

    "My job," he said with a shrug. "I have my trophy. I'm done here."

    He left after that. I never saw him again.

    Three Days Later, in the Sword Saint's tent

    "So, soul-stealing sword, huh?"

    "Soul-storing, really. I thought you might use it against me, and I figured I could be safe rather than sorry. Do you intend on killing me?"

    "No way! We've got a lot to teach each other. And it's not like I can't afford the spell if I can get you on our side."

    "Oh, definitely. Are you...?

    "What, single? Yeah, actually. You wouldn't think it, but yeah. Want to get some drinks or something to celebrate coming back from the dead once we get back to Porthaven?"

    "Sounds marvelous."


    Quote Originally Posted by Chilingsworth View Post
    Wow! Not only was that awesome, I think I actually kinda understand Archeron now. If all the "intermediate" outer planes got that kind of treatment, I doubt there would be anywhere near as many critics of their utility.
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  12. - Top - End - #312
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    All right, all right, I'm coming!

    First off - you win writing. Forever.

    This made me laugh like nothing else

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord_Gareth View Post
    "You're good," the youth said eagerly. "You're damn good. I've never had a fight like this!"

    "You're pretty impressive yourself, Sword Saint. Sadly, I know something you do not."

    His grin widened, "Let me guess, you are not left handed?"

    "No. This is not a longsword."
    I had visions of Inigo Montoya and Westley here. I loved the "not left-handed" part I read it out to my husband and he started laughing as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord_Gareth View Post
    Three Days Later, in the Sword Saint's tent

    "So, soul-stealing sword, huh?"

    "Soul-storing, really. I thought you might use it against me, and I figured I could be safe rather than sorry. Do you intend on killing me?"

    "No way! We've got a lot to teach each other. And it's not like I can't afford the spell if I can get you on our side."

    "Oh, definitely. Are you...?

    "What, single? Yeah, actually. You wouldn't think it, but yeah. Want to get some drinks or something to celebrate coming back from the dead once we get back to Porthaven?"

    "Sounds marvelous."
    Best. Ending. Ever I don't think any snippet here has made me laugh quite as hard as this did

    Writing was brilliant as always - got a bit confused as to who Francis () was talking to with his first line "don't worry I'll take it from here" - gotta admit I'm not entirely sure who he was talking to and what's meant to be happening here. That would be the only critisim though. The rest of it had me cracking up laughing. The combat is well done and easy to follow and the whole thing flows smoothly. I like having it from the scribe's point of view, it worked really well.

    And the whole concept of "I killed you, hey now let's date!" "You killed me, hey now let's date!" just has me wanting to burst out laughing at work. It was so utterly out there and yet it still works within the story. Much love and you win


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  13. - Top - End - #313
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    Indeed they do! I found myself getting to the end and going "oh dear..."

    The ending felt a little - jerky though I have to say. It kinda felt like you were in a hurry to finish and just tacked something on at the end.
    Well, we wanted to wrap things up, since I was the only player still around (hence the focus on what I did), and it was a really short combat. It took two rounds for the bugbear and necromancers to all be dead and it took another round to finish off the skeletons. All in all, I think it took about 10 minutes to finish. That's about how long one round takes in a typical combat with that group.

    And, soon (later tonight, if I have time and the will), I'll tell a tale of my new paladin, Virei Goldeneyes, and the first battle I played him in. It was kind of hilarious and kind of awesome. It was also our first session using 4e, so the other players aren't used to using powers yet.
    To quote myself, in response to the shocked looks as I explained the effects of an ability: "I'm a defender! "
    Some men just want to watch the world shift uncomfortably in its seat.
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    I happen to like screwing around with Handle Animal.
    Red Mage, is that you?
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    A week ago, I didn't know who you were. Now I know: you're the BEST PERSON EVER.
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    You seem to be having trouble with the idea that a rulebook can contradict itself, because it shouldn't, but...WotC.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    And the whole concept of "I killed you, hey now let's date!" "You killed me, hey now let's date!" just has me wanting to burst out laughing at work. It was so utterly out there and yet it still works within the story. Much love and you win
    When your entire life is combat (and the two of you are the chosen of goddess-potentiates seeking to emerge into reality ex nihilo) you tend to be kinda odd.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chilingsworth View Post
    Wow! Not only was that awesome, I think I actually kinda understand Archeron now. If all the "intermediate" outer planes got that kind of treatment, I doubt there would be anywhere near as many critics of their utility.
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    Quote Originally Posted by absolmorph View Post
    Well, we wanted to wrap things up, since I was the only player still around (hence the focus on what I did), and it was a really short combat. It took two rounds for the bugbear and necromancers to all be dead and it took another round to finish off the skeletons. All in all, I think it took about 10 minutes to finish. That's about how long one round takes in a typical combat with that group.

    And, soon (later tonight, if I have time and the will), I'll tell a tale of my new paladin, Virei Goldeneyes, and the first battle I played him in. It was kind of hilarious and kind of awesome. It was also our first session using 4e, so the other players aren't used to using powers yet.
    To quote myself, in response to the shocked looks as I explained the effects of an ability: "I'm a defender! "
    Ahhh... that makes a lot more sense. First person tends to focus more on the person telling the story, but it seemed odd that your guy (whose name I've forgotten I'm sorry) was the only one doing anything. Finding out you were the only one at the session makes so much more sense

    And where's the paladin? I wanna see this fancy ability

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord_Gareth View Post
    When your entire life is combat (and the two of you are the chosen of goddess-potentiates seeking to emerge into reality ex nihilo) you tend to be kinda odd.
    Yes... yes I can see that making someone a bit odd...

    I am still working on my snippet, time and inspiration have been in short supply. I'm on holiday from next week, but also under doctor's orders to stay off the computer as much as possible so I don't know how much writing I'll actually get done.


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  16. - Top - End - #316
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    And here I try to make my return again. :) There hasn't been much to write about, and there has been a lot of real life stuff to deal with, but I missed you people too much. I need to catch up on reviews, but that'll probably be tomorrow (I really-really hope). I haven't even had time to rewrite the last Bashira story. But I did manage to get a short snippet done today. It's another vampire story, same Morgana, but without her Sire and in San Francisco.

    Righting a Wrong
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    Is standing up to a Baron crazy or having moral fiber?
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    The taxi drives away, and I am left alone with the Gangrel and Brujah, in the middle of the most dangerous district in San Francisco.

    Nicoletta fixates me with a stare. "And what is your business in Colma tonight, Morgana?"

    Her voice is calm, but it still betrays her distrust of non-locals. I've so far been able not to step on any sore toes a particularly patriotic Kindred might have, having seen my share of them previously, but there's always a first time.

    "I want to talk to the Giovanni." I reply carefully. "You're fairly lucky to have necromancers in a city with ghost and zombie problems. I'm hoping they can shed some light on these restless spirits. If I may ask, are you here for the same?"

    "Not until now, no." She replies. "We are going to meet the Baron Evan, as he has been out of touch with the other Barons recently. The Malkavian is prone to disappearances, but now is really not a good time. I want to know if he's all right."

    "I see."

    "You are going to meet the necromancers alone?"

    I shrug. "It is not as if I have much of a choice."

    "Come with us." She offers. "And we will accompany you to the Giovanni." A low growl escapes her. "I want to know what is going on in my city."

    "Certainly." I've been able to talk my way out of being killed by more powerful Kindred after sticking my nose in their affairs before, but having a Gangrel and Brujah as backup is rather reassuring. Especially since we've already fought by one another's side, and have formed a tentative alliance.

    She nods curtly, and struts towards the cemetery. Rebecca follows her, visibly bored, and I follow Rebecca.

    Our road winds on through the many graves. Luckily, it's a fairly calm cemetery for now. No restless spirits come out to taunt or harm us. But there is no Baron, either.

    The Gangrel calls out to the Baron, and as we wait, I let my eyes wander. A grave marker catches my attention. It reads, "Morgana Lakes. 1837-1855."

    "Why, hello." I say quietly. "It's not often you find someone named exactly as you are."

    As if in reply, something moves behind me. I spin around, only to see a thin, gaunt blonde man, smartly dressed, slowly moving towards me. He smiles a welcoming smile, but there is an axe in his hand that kills the reassuring effect completely.

    I back away at the same slow pace.

    "Nicoletta," I call. "Is this the Baron?"

    "Oh! Evan! Glad to see you!" The Gangrel says. "I need to talk to you, please."

    But he's looking only at me, and smiling in obvious relief. He finally speaks in a quiet voice, "I'm so glad you came. So very glad. It would have been hard to find you, this is a big city. But you came on your own. Thank you."

    "Is there a way I can be of service to the Baron of Colma?"

    "Yes." He stops close to the grave of Morgana Lakes. "I need your hand. Please. It won't hurt. It won't take long. I need to return it to its rightful owner."

    Ah. He is hounded by a wraith, I presume. And, yes, the solution does make sense if she's missing a hand. The magic of name is important, and it *is* possible that the wraith will move on if I provide her with what has been taken away.

    But I'm really not too keen on giving away an important magical link to some wraith I don't even know. Maybe there's another way around this?

    "Wait, Evan." Nicoletta says, coming up to us. "Morgana *is* her own hand's rightful owner."

    "No, you don't understand." The Malkavian says kindly. "I need to help her. Please, miss. Your hand."

    "It's all right, Nicoletta. May I look at her grave? I may be able to help her without such drastic measures."

    He looks uncertain. "Y-yes, yes, but quickly, please. I am a very busy man."

    "Rebecca," I turn to the redhead. "I have a favor to ask of you."

    The Brujah raises an eyebrow. "Yeah?"

    "Catch me if things get out of hand." A medium who fears the spirit world is almost a joke. A vampire medium whose Beast fears the spirit world is nearly always a joke. I need backup these nights, backup to hold me while I deal with fear. It frustrates me to no end.

    "Ok, fine." The Brujah shrugs.

    I come up to the grave, and kneel beside it. My hands stroke the grave marker as I concentrate.

    ...And sickness overcomes me. There is sharp pain in my stomach, and the blood in my body rises up, and I cannot keep it down, vomiting blood over the grave. When the fit passes, I see the ground of the graveyard seep with yellow bile. I hear voices that whisper "leracholeracholeracho..."

    Oh gods. A whole cemetery of cholera victims. They are reaching for me! They will infect me!

    My body jerks away from the grave, but two strong hands catch me in time.

    Stay, you fool, you are undead and in no danger here! Don't you dare run!

    "Morrigan, Washer at the Ford, prophet who knows of the dead, give me strength to see through their pain, give me the sight to know what happened to this girl!" I mutter in Irish, forcing myself to concentrate. "I am better. Release me, Rebecca."

    The Brujah does as I ask. The pain fades into the background, and I can look down into the grave. Into? Yes, for the earth has been torn open by a man with a shovel. He resembles Evan, but has a greedy glint in his eyes and a wicked grin on his face. A grave robber?

    He finally reaches the coffin, and opens it. The girl looks nothing like me, whether in death or in life. But she does have a few valuables on her. He quickly tears the jewelery off, but has some difficulty with the bracelet on her left arm. The bracelet is some kind of charm, I think, worthless except as a memento. But the greed of the man is too great. He tries to remove it, but it sits too tightly. The grave robber scowls, and removes her hand with a few certain chops of the shovel. He is obviously used to doing this.

    Someone whimpers behind me, and I turn to see a scared-looking young boy, who will grow up in one hundred and fifty years to become the Baron of Colma. The grave robber notices him, too. He screams at the boy shrilly.

    "Evan, you little bastard! Get the hell to sleep! Get out! Get out!"

    The boy takes a step away and starts to fade. I take one last look at the girl and know with the certainty of a medium: her spirit is not restless. She passed on long ago, and with relative ease.

    This is not a matter of restless spirits, but the Malkavian's guilt speaking within him.

    The real world comes into view, and I find myself on hands and knees on an undisturbed grave, with blood streaming down my cheeks.

    "Well?" The Baron says sharply. "Are you done? I need your hand."

    I stand up and meet his eye. I am far taller than he is, and yet he is Baron, over a hundred years older than I am, and with a very sharp axe.

    But I cannot give way to insanity and lies.

    "I am sorry, Baron." I say firmly. "The girl's spirit is long gone. My hand would not help her in any way. It is you who need help, not her."

    "What are you talking about?" Confused and angry, like all who must meet with their lies to themselves. "I need your hand, miss, please. I thought I was so lucky, that it's not going to be like always, in dark alleys, with the police and all the noise afterwards, please, do not disappoint me!"

    Oh gods, I wonder how many people he killed to right the wrongs done by his father. And possibly in vain, too. I really can't leave this be, I must tell him the truth. Looks like I'm going to make an enemy of a Baron. Just. My. Luck.

    "She does not need it." I repeat. "She is long gone from this world, and nothing remains. I do understand that you would like to right the wrong of a grave robber." His face contorts in fear. He knows that I know. "But this is not the way to do it. If you like, we can talk about how we can help you."

    "I thought you understood!" He looks lost. "Please don't make me hunt you in an alley somewhere!"

    "I do understand, Evan." I come up to him, and try to hold his shoulders reassuringly. Oh gods, save me from a close combat Frenzy, I'm going to die if he Frenzies, he's older than I am... "I do understand why you want to repent. But this is really not the way to do it. I can help, if you want. But it's not the kind of help you're asking for."

    He sobs - and disappears from my hands.

    I brace myself for impact.

    But the axe blow does not come.

    "Evan! Call Nicholas, please!" Nicoletta says, and then scribbles the same message on the earthy path with her foot. Then she turns to me. "What's going on, Morgana?"

    "He wants to right an old wrong. But there is no one to make it right to." I reply. "There is no ghost here. Merely his own imagination. I am sorry for hurting your negotiations."

    "I got what I came here for." The Gangrel answers. "Let's move on to your Giovanni.
    There are thousands of good reasons magic doesn't rule the world. They're called mages. - Slightly misquoted Pratchett

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    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post
    And here I try to make my return again. :) There hasn't been much to write about, and there has been a lot of real life stuff to deal with, but I missed you people too much. I need to catch up on reviews, but that'll probably be tomorrow (I really-really hope). I haven't even had time to rewrite the last Bashira story. But I did manage to get a short snippet done today. It's another vampire story, same Morgana, but without her Sire and in San Francisco.

    Righting a Wrong
    or
    Is standing up to a Baron crazy or having moral fiber?
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    The taxi drives away, and I am left alone with the Gangrel and Brujah, in the middle of the most dangerous district in San Francisco.

    Nicoletta fixates me with a stare. "And what is your business in Colma tonight, Morgana?"

    Her voice is calm, but it still betrays her distrust of non-locals. I've so far been able not to step on any sore toes a particularly patriotic Kindred might have, having seen my share of them previously, but there's always a first time.

    "I want to talk to the Giovanni." I reply carefully. "You're fairly lucky to have necromancers in a city with ghost and zombie problems. I'm hoping they can shed some light on these restless spirits. If I may ask, are you here for the same?"

    "Not until now, no." She replies. "We are going to meet the Baron Evan, as he has been out of touch with the other Barons recently. The Malkavian is prone to disappearances, but now is really not a good time. I want to know if he's all right."

    "I see."

    "You are going to meet the necromancers alone?"

    I shrug. "It is not as if I have much of a choice."

    "Come with us." She offers. "And we will accompany you to the Giovanni." A low growl escapes her. "I want to know what is going on in my city."

    "Certainly." I've been able to talk my way out of being killed by more powerful Kindred after sticking my nose in their affairs before, but having a Gangrel and Brujah as backup is rather reassuring. Especially since we've already fought by one another's side, and have formed a tentative alliance.

    She nods curtly, and struts towards the cemetery. Rebecca follows her, visibly bored, and I follow Rebecca.

    Our road winds on through the many graves. Luckily, it's a fairly calm cemetery for now. No restless spirits come out to taunt or harm us. But there is no Baron, either.

    The Gangrel calls out to the Baron, and as we wait, I let my eyes wander. A grave marker catches my attention. It reads, "Morgana Lakes. 1837-1855."

    "Why, hello." I say quietly. "It's not often you find someone named exactly as you are."

    As if in reply, something moves behind me. I spin around, only to see a thin, gaunt blonde man, smartly dressed, slowly moving towards me. He smiles a welcoming smile, but there is an axe in his hand that kills the reassuring effect completely.

    I back away at the same slow pace.

    "Nicoletta," I call. "Is this the Baron?"

    "Oh! Evan! Glad to see you!" The Gangrel says. "I need to talk to you, please."

    But he's looking only at me, and smiling in obvious relief. He finally speaks in a quiet voice, "I'm so glad you came. So very glad. It would have been hard to find you, this is a big city. But you came on your own. Thank you."

    "Is there a way I can be of service to the Baron of Colma?"

    "Yes." He stops close to the grave of Morgana Lakes. "I need your hand. Please. It won't hurt. It won't take long. I need to return it to its rightful owner."

    Ah. He is hounded by a wraith, I presume. And, yes, the solution does make sense if she's missing a hand. The magic of name is important, and it *is* possible that the wraith will move on if I provide her with what has been taken away.

    But I'm really not too keen on giving away an important magical link to some wraith I don't even know. Maybe there's another way around this?

    "Wait, Evan." Nicoletta says, coming up to us. "Morgana *is* her own hand's rightful owner."

    "No, you don't understand." The Malkavian says kindly. "I need to help her. Please, miss. Your hand."

    "It's all right, Nicoletta. May I look at her grave? I may be able to help her without such drastic measures."

    He looks uncertain. "Y-yes, yes, but quickly, please. I am a very busy man."

    "Rebecca," I turn to the redhead. "I have a favor to ask of you."

    The Brujah raises an eyebrow. "Yeah?"

    "Catch me if things get out of hand." A medium who fears the spirit world is almost a joke. A vampire medium whose Beast fears the spirit world is nearly always a joke. I need backup these nights, backup to hold me while I deal with fear. It frustrates me to no end.

    "Ok, fine." The Brujah shrugs.

    I come up to the grave, and kneel beside it. My hands stroke the grave marker as I concentrate.

    ...And sickness overcomes me. There is sharp pain in my stomach, and the blood in my body rises up, and I cannot keep it down, vomiting blood over the grave. When the fit passes, I see the ground of the graveyard seep with yellow bile. I hear voices that whisper "leracholeracholeracho..."

    Oh gods. A whole cemetery of cholera victims. They are reaching for me! They will infect me!

    My body jerks away from the grave, but two strong hands catch me in time.

    Stay, you fool, you are undead and in no danger here! Don't you dare run!

    "Morrigan, Washer at the Ford, prophet who knows of the dead, give me strength to see through their pain, give me the sight to know what happened to this girl!" I mutter in Irish, forcing myself to concentrate. "I am better. Release me, Rebecca."

    The Brujah does as I ask. The pain fades into the background, and I can look down into the grave. Into? Yes, for the earth has been torn open by a man with a shovel. He resembles Evan, but has a greedy glint in his eyes and a wicked grin on his face. A grave robber?

    He finally reaches the coffin, and opens it. The girl looks nothing like me, whether in death or in life. But she does have a few valuables on her. He quickly tears the jewelery off, but has some difficulty with the bracelet on her left arm. The bracelet is some kind of charm, I think, worthless except as a memento. But the greed of the man is too great. He tries to remove it, but it sits too tightly. The grave robber scowls, and removes her hand with a few certain chops of the shovel. He is obviously used to doing this.

    Someone whimpers behind me, and I turn to see a scared-looking young boy, who will grow up in one hundred and fifty years to become the Baron of Colma. The grave robber notices him, too. He screams at the boy shrilly.

    "Evan, you little bastard! Get the hell to sleep! Get out! Get out!"

    The boy takes a step away and starts to fade. I take one last look at the girl and know with the certainty of a medium: her spirit is not restless. She passed on long ago, and with relative ease.

    This is not a matter of restless spirits, but the Malkavian's guilt speaking within him.

    The real world comes into view, and I find myself on hands and knees on an undisturbed grave, with blood streaming down my cheeks.

    "Well?" The Baron says sharply. "Are you done? I need your hand."

    I stand up and meet his eye. I am far taller than he is, and yet he is Baron, over a hundred years older than I am, and with a very sharp axe.

    But I cannot give way to insanity and lies.

    "I am sorry, Baron." I say firmly. "The girl's spirit is long gone. My hand would not help her in any way. It is you who need help, not her."

    "What are you talking about?" Confused and angry, like all who must meet with their lies to themselves. "I need your hand, miss, please. I thought I was so lucky, that it's not going to be like always, in dark alleys, with the police and all the noise afterwards, please, do not disappoint me!"

    Oh gods, I wonder how many people he killed to right the wrongs done by his father. And possibly in vain, too. I really can't leave this be, I must tell him the truth. Looks like I'm going to make an enemy of a Baron. Just. My. Luck.

    "She does not need it." I repeat. "She is long gone from this world, and nothing remains. I do understand that you would like to right the wrong of a grave robber." His face contorts in fear. He knows that I know. "But this is not the way to do it. If you like, we can talk about how we can help you."

    "I thought you understood!" He looks lost. "Please don't make me hunt you in an alley somewhere!"

    "I do understand, Evan." I come up to him, and try to hold his shoulders reassuringly. Oh gods, save me from a close combat Frenzy, I'm going to die if he Frenzies, he's older than I am... "I do understand why you want to repent. But this is really not the way to do it. I can help, if you want. But it's not the kind of help you're asking for."

    He sobs - and disappears from my hands.

    I brace myself for impact.

    But the axe blow does not come.

    "Evan! Call Nicholas, please!" Nicoletta says, and then scribbles the same message on the earthy path with her foot. Then she turns to me. "What's going on, Morgana?"

    "He wants to right an old wrong. But there is no one to make it right to." I reply. "There is no ghost here. Merely his own imagination. I am sorry for hurting your negotiations."

    "I got what I came here for." The Gangrel answers. "Let's move on to your Giovanni.
    WEREKAT!!! *pounce-hugs*

    Missed you

    I love this, but then I've always had a thing for vampire stories, ever since I read Dracula, and this one is awesome. I like seeing a traditional vampire as the good-guy for a change.

    I love the names, although the introduction of 'Evan' startled me a bit, the name just didn't mesh with the others very well. Though I can easily understand that might not be your problem if you didn't name them. Same with Rebecca (though not as much) And has far more to do with the fact that Rebecca is my name :-P

    Just a matter of formatting - you know you don't have to use *word* for empahsis right? You can just use italics/bold etc as normal?


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  18. - Top - End - #318
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Lady Moreta: Thanks for the greeting back!

    Yeah, I know the thing about formatting - I just forgot, because I write in a .txt editor which doesn't have italics or bold. I correct that when I post, but sometimes I forget.

    The names really aren't mine. And Morgana always calls people by their full names, unless specifically told not to. So the plucky little red-haired Brujah is called "Rebecca" when writing from her PoV and not "Becky," and the stripperific Gangrel is called "Nicoletta." Evan isn't mine, he's our ST's. :)

    Morgana's more True Neutral than Good, really, as far as alignments go. She has a number of principles she lives by, and those have driven her both to do good at great risk to herself and to do evil because duty demands. Not Lawful Neutral because, well, she's a vampire, she has to break a number of laws just to stay alive. She was like that when she was human, as well. Got her the grudging respect of Camarilla and Sabbat vampires alike, but utter disdain from the one human that knew of her double life...

    Instead of just saying that, though, your comment inspired me illustrate - so here's a short story from her initial, mortal life with vampires.

    Choosing Sides
    or
    Writing a character with 10th century morals in a Humanity-centered game is asking for trouble
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    The battle is finally over. I place my gun back in its holster and assess the situation.

    We are in trouble.

    Karmen, her body torn apart by the creature's claws, barely staggers to her feet. Timothy is down and out cold. Ted stands over him, wounded and surprised. Mind control forced the two Brujah to duel, and Ted unexpectedly came out on top. Mind control. As if necromancy and fleshcraft and illusions were not enough. What *else* can these creatures do? And there are eight more left...

    Karmen, healing rapidly, walks up to her Pack priest, kneels to see just how badly hurt he is, and roars in her powerful voice of a powerful, if hurt, Lasombra. "WHO?"

    "I did." Ted says sullenly.

    The Ductus rises and discharges her machine gun into the other Brujah, and Ted falls, limp and unconscious. She turns to me, eyes flashing in barely-restrained hungry fury.

    I'm dead.

    But she manages to restrain herself.

    "Mortal!" Karmen growls, fingers flexing, predatory grin on her face. "Go down the stairs! Find another one of you, or better two! Quickly!"

    I nod and step outside the room. No use in taunting the vampires with my living blood now. I need to get them to the city. There's nobody here, anyway. The island where we had fought had been cleansed of humans before we came. I need to get them to the helicopter, If not - they'll eat each other. And me. Merely spill blood, and the two out cold will rise, and there will be a blood bath.

    I press the button for the elevator. It rises up slowly, so very slowly, but finally a chime signals its arrival.

    Oh Gods, no.

    There is a man inside the elevator, lying in a pool of his own blood. Clothed as a janitor. Openly fractured leg. Blood stain on chest. Eyes glazed over with pain. A soft whisper, "H-help... Me... God.. Swe-it Je-esus... Help.."

    And the choices I have are crystal-clear.

    I forget my promises and duties and try to save him. I take him down the elevator, and to the helicopter which I can't fly and can't land. And the people I am in one boat with will kill each other for their hunger.

    I try to take him with us, arguing with a Sabbat pack for his life. While they are allies for now, they are on the edge of Frenzy. I remember Frenzy from the inside. It does not ask whether this insolent insect before you is your ally. An argument will send them over the edge. And then we're both dead. The vampires survive, though: they'll sate the initial hunger on us.

    I leave him here to die on his own. Those wounds will be the death of him before long without medical help. But maybe, just maybe it will come soon enough. But without food the vampires Frenzy, and we are all dead regardless.

    And I can give him to them. To Karmen, whose bite is not ecstasy, but endless pain.

    Well, Morgana? Did you not swear so long ago, back in another life, that if choosing between the lives of your allies and strangers you will choose allies?

    Will you now walk away from that oath?

    No. But I will not let him feel pain, either.

    I draw the dagger Ted gave me to keep. The man is barely conscious. There will be no struggle.

    It's decided, Morgana. I place the dagger to his chest.

    "Forgive me."

    There is no struggle. I pierce his heart and the man soon stops moving, quietly.

    I drag the fresh corpse into the room.

    "Here." And step back.

    Karmen falls upon him like a vulture, biting into his neck.

    And just for a second I hear a shrill scream.

    Oh great Gods. Can't I even kill a man right, if it is what I must do?! Can I not grant him mercy?!

    I do not look away as she feeds. I have no right to look away.


    So: starting with the review debts. I'll be going back in chronological order, so I'll do the most recent stories first.

    As always, disclaimer: this is the opinion of someone for whom English is not a first language, and quite subjective. If someone's not interested in the questions on style I ask, you have but to tell me, and I'll shut up and restrict myself to asking questions about the characters and their actions.

    Lord Gareth, Steel Song: First emotional response: awesome! One question not related to the writing: who were the PC's? I assume Francis and his group, but you leave just enough doubt for me to have to ask.

    More concrete text stuff: I like the way you did the battle - I could see it in my mind, and that's what matters most for me. I like how the scribe is slowly clued in to the half-elf's strength. And I love the ending! I'd like to see more how the relationship between the two developed.

    Criticism: none, really. Good snippet for our format.

    Amiel, Maleidolon: The pluses: you got Shaira's feelings and actions across well. I liked the feeling of an old warrior, too: you can feel that she's not the youngsters that usually adventure, which is a refreshing break for me, really. You rarely, if ever, repeat words of description.

    The minuses: I feel kinda weird here, because I had a hard time getting your style. This does not mean it's bad, you're very much proficient with English - it probably just means that English is a second language for me, so I'll just list the stuff that threw me off-track and let the others comment upon style. I had to look up new words, which is always good, but rather than clearing my confusion, it increased them. Particular examples:

    "auburn lens" - that means eyes, right?

    "Once hale, her red hair" - once healthy? Strong? It is unhealthy and unkempt now, is that what you meant?

    "Dark circles bespoke of the fatigue gripping her then" - you mean the dark circles swimming in one's eyes when one's fatigued, right?

    Other stuff that seemed weird: why was Shaira surprised when she understood that her quarry was a Rakshasa? At least, that's the impression the following fragment gives for me:

    Like lightning, the naked blade hewed off the creature's head. A face, animalistic yet unnatural with great unblinking eyes stared from a tiger's visage.
    It was a rakshasa.
    Why does Shaira first kick in the door and shout her daughter's name and then think of the silence and the other guests? Why cannot she enter the room quietly if nothing is wrong, anyway - I presume that she sleeps in the same room as her daughter? Is she just too nervous and tired to think straight (certainly possible after such an ordeal)?

    And, uh, feeling like a complete dunce here, but what happened at the end? There were two Rakshasa rather than one, and the second Rakshasa killed everyone? Or did something more sinister happen?

    Absolmorph, Burning the man who burnt us: one criticism. I personally can only see the narrator. It's like I'm listening to you telling an RP story, which is not necessarily bad, but not exactly immersive into the world and/or character themselves. If that was the feeling you were going for, you got it, but it doesn't seem to me as if you were. If you're interested in more particular stuff - I'm game to provide.

    Bubs the Sorcerer sounds like fun to play, though! Mostly Necromancy and Evocation in the spell lists, right?

    Machuchang: for now, I'll just say that I enjoyed your work a lot - I have some work to do now, but I'll get back to you next post. Varen's storyline is probably my favorite, but Abigail's quickly catching up in my personal rating! ;-)
    Last edited by Werekat; 2010-12-23 at 04:58 PM.
    There are thousands of good reasons magic doesn't rule the world. They're called mages. - Slightly misquoted Pratchett

  19. - Top - End - #319
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Machuchang's Avatar

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    Werekat! Good to see you around here again! I've really been missing your writing and advice!

    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post
    Righting a Wrong
    or
    Is standing up to a Baron crazy or having moral fiber?
    I would say that Morgana definitely demonstrated moral fiber here, but then again, I'm an idealist.

    I really enjoyed this story. Morgana is quite a compelling character, and
    I especially enjoyed all of your descriptions. They really gave me an idea of what the characters were feeling and seeing, which made me feel very immersed in the story and setting. Great work, as always.
    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post

    Choosing Sides
    or
    Writing a character with 10th century morals in a Humanity-centered game is asking for trouble
    Wow. This was dark. Not that I'm complaining though! I love this one!

    What I really love about these stories is that even though I know absolutely nothing about WoD, I still feel like I'm right there in the middle of the story, which is totally awesome. Though this also makes me really want to know exactly what happened right before this snippet took place. Then again, I always want to know what happened exactly before a snippet took place.

    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post
    Machuchang: for now, I'll just say that I enjoyed your work a lot - I have some work to do now, but I'll get back to you next post. Varen's storyline is probably my favorite, but Abigail's quickly catching up in my personal rating! ;-)
    You are far too kind! Though I think that the compliments for the storylines should go to my DM.

  20. - Top - End - #320
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Lady Moreta's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post
    Choosing Sides
    or
    Writing a character with 10th century morals in a Humanity-centered game is asking for trouble
    Initial reaction: a softly spoken, heartfelt "Damn..." I agree with Machuchang, that was very dark. The ending actually rather startled me, with her realisation she didn't kill the guy properly and feeling like she doesn't deserve to look away. She may be true neutral but I like her.

    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post
    Karmen, her body torn apart by the creature's claws, barely staggers to her feet. Timothy is down and out cold. Ted stands over him, wounded and surprised. Mind control forced the two Brujah to duel, and Ted unexpectedly came out on top. Mind control. As if necromancy and fleshcraft and illusions were not enough. What *else* can these creatures do? And there are eight more left...
    I have to admit, this confused me a little, I wasn't sure if 'these creatures' were the vampires or something else. It took a little time to realise who the vampires were and that Morgana was the only human there (I think). Doesn't detract from the story, and coupled with the dark feel and her thoughts I think it actually works rather well.

    Quote Originally Posted by Werekat View Post
    Karmen, healing rapidly, walks up to her Pack priest, kneels to see just how badly hurt he is, and roars in her powerful voice of a powerful, if hurt, Lasombra. "WHO?"
    This is my only critisim... the 'powerful voice of a powerful' - too many uses of the same word in one sentence. It detracts from the sentence and I find that I at least got distracted from the sense of who Karmen is and what she's like by the sudden jarring.

    Other questions are simply what is a Brujah? Lasombra? Gangrel? I'm curious

    Oh, about the formatting - I write in MS Word, but what I do is just use the formatting tools as normal and then once I'm done, I go back through and put the html tags around the appropriate words. I used to do it as I wrote, but it got too distracting and I'd lose my train of thought so I just went back afterwords and did it then.


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  21. - Top - End - #321
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    I just learned that both Varen and Natalia's names are very fitting in regards to this holiday season. Varen apparently means gift, and Natalia means born on Christmas day. So what does this newfound knowledge get you? Snippets from both!

    Family Feud

    (or Family Reunions Usually Aren't THIS Awkward)

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    Gods, why did I get so teary there? I couldn’t trust him! Not yet! There was still so much I had to know, and if I let my guard down now, I would never have my answers.

    But he was happy to see me. And he was surprised by our warning of the Crownbreakers’ plan of attack. If he really had managed to manipulate the Crownbreakers beforehand, to kill me no less, then his reactions just didn’t add up. Either he was completely genuine, or he was one of the best liars I had ever met. I wasn’t sure which one was more unnerving.

    But Varen trusted him. And he was always much, much better at reading people than I ever was…

    But Varen was gone now. After we had warned him, the Emperor sent him off to warn his generals of the impending attack, but I stayed behind. Good thing too. There was no way I’d be able to think with him hovering around nearby.

    “Are you not going with him?” the Emperor asked curiously.

    “Actually, my lord,” I said. “I was wondering if we could talk,”

    “Of course!” the Emperor gave a confused little smile as sank into his chair. “And please, call me Acton,”

    “I want to know about my father,”

    “Ah…” the Emperor’s demeanor changed dramatically. His bemused expression was immediately replaced with one of trauma and resignation, and he seemed to sink even deeper into his chair.

    “Your father, Adam…” he sighed despondently. “He was my older brother, and the heir to the throne. But more than that, he was my best friend. I loved him and respected him like no one else, before or since,” he chuckled a little bit to himself. “When we were little, we would sneak out into the town and go swimming in King’s Bay. Our nanny would always have a fit when we came back with sand in our hair…” his eyes lit up as he spoke, and he beamed mischievously, as though he had just now gotten back from such an adventure. I couldn’t help but smile too.

    “He was a prodigy you know,” the Emperor shifted himself in his seat and leaned forward intently. “They said he was a genius. It really was no surprise at all though, at least to me,” the Emperor grinned and shook his head. “Adam had a memory like no one else. And oh! Was he good with people! He could get anything he wanted with that silver tongue of his! Not that he ever did…” the Emperor suddenly became contemplative. “No, he would always do things on others’ behalves. Adam lived to please others. That’s why your mother loved him so much,” he snickered at first, then burst into laughter, before quickly cutting himself off. I could only stare at him incredulously. I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about.

    “Forgive me,” he chuckled again. “But they really were quite a pair! Adam would do anything for Dawn, and she would have done anything for him. They were so in love, it was almost disgusting,” he chuckled. “And I introduced them you know. Dawn was the best person in the world for him. They were always together, They were the talk of the country! Everyone knew who they were. But unfortunately, they were not so famed because of their feelings for one another,” he sighed again. “You see, Dawn was not of any royal family. In fact, she was merely a peasant woman. And because of it, my parents were furious. Only caring about their political standing in the world, my parents refused to accept their love. They would have rather forced Adam into some arranged marriage to obtain more political power! They said that they would disown him if he chose to pursue his relationship with your mother!” the Emperor’s tone shifted to that of righteous indignation.

    “Of course, I’m sure you can guess how it turned out,” the Emperor said gloomily. “Adam chose to stand by Dawn, no matter what. And my parents threw him out, their compassionate, genius son, and made me the heir to the throne. Adam and Dawn moved out into the country, where, eventually, they had you,” Then suddenly, the Emperor burst. “My parents were fools! Their pride and lust for power doomed this country! If they would have only accepted your parents’ love, then Adam, the better man, the smarter man, would have been king! If only it were so, then perhaps this country would not be in such a mess due to my incompetence!” Visibly drained, he sank back into his chair again, his story apparently finished.

    I was struck immediately. Now everything made sense! Why I was never aware of my royal status, why I had never met my family before, why I was completely cut off from everything. Everything made sense but one thing. Why did my father send me away? That just didn’t make sense! There had to be more to the story.

    “But how did he die, Acton?” I asked. “When I was only seven years old, he took me away and left me in a monastery of the Eight-Pointed star. He said that we were in danger. After that, I never saw him or my mother again. Please,” I begged. “What happened?”

    The Emperor sat in silence for what seemed like forever, purposefully trying to avoid my gaze. Then, tears began to well in his eyes, and soon, they were falling freely down his cheeks.

    “Fifteen years ago… I finally saw your father again,” the Emperor wept. “He told me that he was being hunted. That assassins had… taken Dawn’s life… and were after his as well,” the Emperor buried his face in his hands. “I promised him that I would protect him! That I would find out who was behind it, and that I would make them pay-” the Emperor cut himself off as he tried to choke back the tears. “Th-then that very night… F-for the first time I h-had seen him in eight years, I h-heard a t-terrible scream,” the Emperor sobbed. “I w-walked into h-his room, and th-there he was. H-his th-throat sl-slit and h-his eyes r-rolled b-back… Th-there was b-blood everywh-where…”

    My stomach sank.

    “S-so I l-launched an investigation,” the Emperor rubbed his eyes. “A-and d-do you kn-know who was behind it?” he began to weep uncontrollably. “M-my parents… Apparently, by s-some law, A-Adam was st-still heir. S-so th-they k-killed him for me…” the Emperor wailed. “So y-you kn-know what I d-did? I k-killed them. I h-had them h-hung! I m-murdered my own p-parents t-to avenge m-my brother… My whole family was killed because of me!”

    The Emperor was disconsolate. I had no idea what I could do, what I could say, to try and make things better for him. But now I understood why he was so shocked to see me, why he was so emotional when he met me. I had gone and dredged up all of these old feelings about his family just by being around.

    I laid my hand on his shoulder.

    “Not your whole family, Acton,”


    How it Should Have Been

    (or Dancing in the Moonlight)


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    Well, it certainly had been an eventful day.

    The Emperor had taken our warning of the Crownbreakers with great seriousness, and within a few hours, it seemed like the whole capitol city was preparing for war. He had us spread the warning to all of his generals and he himself had even sent word to the ten Dukes. It seemed like all of Geridia was waiting with feverish anticipation for the Crownbreakers, but he still seemed preoccupied with Natalia.

    Honestly, I was too.

    She just kept acting stranger and stranger as the day went on, and when the Emperor gave her her own room in the palace, she just disappeared into it. I had to know what was wrong.

    But something held me back. Only when it was late at night was I able gather enough courage to speak to her. And even then, I must have stood outside her door for ages before even trying to knock.

    But finally, I managed to gain enough composure to act. I opened the door.

    She was sitting on her bed, apparently lost in thought. Pale moonlight poured in from her window, illuminating her slender form, her long, golden hair glowing in the soft light. Gods, she was so beautiful.

    “Tali?” I asked hesitantly as I entered. “Can we talk?”

    She looked up in shock when I spoke.

    “Oh! Varen!” she said, surprised. “Why are you here?”

    “I’m worried about you,” I said. “You’ve been acting strangely recently, and I want to know if you’re alright,”

    “What is it with you?” She gave a slight laugh. “I’m perfectly fine. You don’t need to worry about me,” She tried to give me a reassuring smile.

    “But I do,” I said. “You’ve barely spoken to me in weeks, and you hardly ever even look at me. Why? Have I done something wrong? Are you ashamed of me? Do you not really love me…?” I was starting to get choked up. “Please Tali… I’m afraid I’m going to lose you,”

    Natalia turned away from me, and just sat in silence for what seemed like ages. Then, slowly, she began to roll back her dress, revealing a tiny scabbard that had been tied around her leg. Carefully, she unsheathed a long, slender knife and laid it on the bed.

    “Why?” she turned to me. “Because I was going to break your heart,” Her large blue eyes seemed to be staring right through me. “I was going to kill the Emperor, and I was going to tear you apart… But maybe if we weren’t so close anymore, neither of us would have been hurt as much... At least that’s what I thought,” she kept getting quieter and quieter as she spoke. “And then I just couldn’t bring myself to kill him. He really wasn’t what I thought…”

    A chill ran down my spine. I was absolutely stunned. I had no idea what to think. She had just confessed that she had planned to murder the Emperor! I thought that she had changed! I thought that she was through with the Crownbreakers! I was stressed and confused, but as I looked at her, as I saw her pained expression, I knew that there had to be more going on than what I was thinking. And Gods, no matter what, I would love her. So not knowing what to think, I walked over to the bed and sat down next to her.

    “Tali, what is going on?”

    She sighed heavily.

    “One year ago, I met my father for the first time since I was seven years old,” she said sadly. “He was at the ruins of the monastery, with Father Daugherty. He said that the Emperor was behind the attack, that he was trying to kill me to ensure his claim to the throne would be safe!” she kept getting more and more agitated as she spoke. “So I had to take over the Crownbreakers! I had to lead them, to do everything in my power to strike out against the Emperor! So when you finally gave me a chance to see the Emperor face-to face, I had to be prepared to kill him! He had to be evil! That would have been the only way that I could have justified my actions! That would have been the only way I could have ever brought out a greater good from the deaths of all of those innocent people! But after meeting him, after getting to know him, there is just no way that it could have been him!” she broke down into tears. Not knowing what else to do, I tentatively grasped her hand in mine. “Gods,” she laid her head against my shoulder. “I’m a complete failure! Everything that I’ve done has been for nothing! I’m worthless!”

    “No,” I said firmly. “You are anything but. You’ve made mistakes, and you’ve done things that you regret, but it’s never too late to start over, to finally make things right. Now you know the truth of the situation, and now you can finally act. There’s still just so much that you can do!” She smiled through her tears and squeezed my hand appreciatively.

    “Start over, huh?” She laughed again, but this time she seemed genuinely happy.

    The next thing I knew, she had wrapped her arms tightly around my neck and her lips were locked tightly around mine. I became lost in the moment. It just seemed to go on forever, but when she finally pulled her lips away from mine, it seemed far too short.

    “This,” she murmured. “This is how it should have been,”

    Then she pushed me down into the bed.
    Last edited by Machuchang; 2010-12-26 at 02:18 AM.

  22. - Top - End - #322
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Quote Originally Posted by Machuchang View Post
    I just learned that both Varen and Natalia's names are very fitting in regards to this holiday season. Varen apparently means gift, and Natalia means born on Christmas day. So what does this newfound knowledge get you? Snippets from both!

    Family Feud

    (or Family Reunions Usually Aren't THIS Awkward)

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    Gods, why did I get so teary there? I couldn’t trust him! Not yet! There was still so much I had to know, and if I let my guard down now, I would never have my answers.

    But he was happy to see me. And he was surprised by our warning of the Crownbreakers’ plan of attack. If he really had managed to manipulate the Crownbreakers beforehand, to kill me no less, then his reactions just didn’t add up. Either he was completely genuine, or he was one of the best liars I had ever met. I wasn’t sure which one was more unnerving.

    But Varen trusted him. And he was always much, much better at reading people than I ever was…

    But Varen was gone now. After we had warned him, the Emperor sent him off to warn his generals of the impending attack, but I stayed behind. Good thing too. There was no way I’d be able to think with him hovering around nearby.

    “Are you not going with him?” the Emperor asked curiously.

    “Actually, my lord,” I said. “I was wondering if we could talk,”

    “Of course!” the Emperor gave a confused little smile as sank into his chair. “And please, call me Acton,”

    “I want to know about my father,”

    “Ah…” the Emperor’s demeanor changed dramatically. His bemused expression was immediately replaced with one of trauma and resignation, and he seemed to sink even deeper into his chair.

    “Your father, Adam…” he sighed despondently. “He was my older brother, and the heir to the throne. But more than that, he was my best friend. I loved him and respected him like no one else, before or since,” he chuckled a little bit to himself. “When we were little, we would sneak out into the town and go swimming in King’s Bay. Our nanny would always have a fit when we came back with sand in our hair…” his eyes lit up as he spoke, and he beamed mischievously, as though he had just now gotten back from such an adventure. I couldn’t help but smile too.

    “He was a prodigy you know,” the Emperor shifted himself in his seat and leaned forward intently. “They said he was a genius. It really was no surprise at all though, at least to me,” the Emperor grinned and shook his head. “Adam had a memory like no one else. And oh! Was he good with people! He could get anything he wanted with that silver tongue of his! Not that he ever did…” the Emperor suddenly became contemplative. “No, he would always do things on others’ behalves. Adam lived to please others. That’s why your mother loved him so much,” he snickered at first, then burst into laughter, before quickly cutting himself off. I could only stare at him incredulously. I had absolutely no idea what he was talking about.

    “Forgive me,” he chuckled again. “But they really were quite a pair! Adam would do anything for Dawn, and she would have done anything for him. They were so in love, it was almost disgusting,” he chuckled. “And I introduced them you know. Dawn was the best person in the world for him. They were always together, They were the talk of the country! Everyone knew who they were. But unfortunately, they were not so famed because of their feelings for one another,” he sighed again. “You see, Dawn was not of any royal family. In fact, she was merely a peasant woman. And because of it, my parents were furious. Only caring about their political standing in the world, my parents refused to accept their love. They would have rather forced Adam into some arranged marriage to obtain more political power! They said that they would disown him if he chose to pursue his relationship with your mother!” the Emperor’s tone shifted to that of righteous indignation.

    “Of course, I’m sure you can guess how it turned out,” the Emperor said gloomily. “Adam chose to stand by Dawn, no matter what. And my parents threw him out, their compassionate, genius son, and made me the heir to the throne. Adam and Dawn moved out into the country, where, eventually, they had you,” Then suddenly, the Emperor burst. “My parents were fools! Their pride and lust for power doomed this country! If they would have only accepted your parents’ love, then Adam, the better man, the smarter man, would have been king! If only it were so, then perhaps this country would not be in such a mess due to my incompetence!” Visibly drained, he sank back into his chair again, his story apparently finished.

    I was struck immediately. Now everything made sense! Why I was never aware of my royal status, why I had never met my family before, why I was completely cut off from everything. Everything made sense but one thing. Why did my father send me away? That just didn’t make sense! There had to be more to the story.

    “But how did he die, Acton?” I asked. “When I was only seven years old, he took me away and left me in a monastery of the Eight-Pointed star. He said that we were in danger. After that, I never saw him or my mother again. Please,” I begged. “What happened?”

    The Emperor sat in silence for what seemed like forever, purposefully trying to avoid my gaze. Then, tears began to well in his eyes, and soon, they were falling freely down his cheeks.

    “Fifteen years ago… I finally saw your father again,” the Emperor wept. “He told me that he was being hunted. That assassins had… taken Dawn’s life… and were after his as well,” the Emperor buried his face in his hands. “I promised him that I would protect him! That I would find out who was behind it, and that I would make them pay-” the Emperor cut himself off as he tried to choke back the tears. “Th-then that very night… F-for the first time I h-had seen him in eight years, I h-heard a t-terrible scream,” the Emperor sobbed. “I w-walked into h-his room, and th-there he was. H-his th-throat sl-slit and h-his eyes r-rolled b-back… Th-there was b-blood everywh-where…”

    My stomach sank.

    “S-so I l-launched an investigation,” the Emperor rubbed his eyes. “A-and d-do you kn-know who was behind it?” he began to weep uncontrollably. “M-my parents… Apparently, by s-some law, A-Adam was st-still heir. S-so th-they k-killed him for me…” the Emperor wailed. “So y-you kn-know what I d-did? I k-killed them. I h-had them h-hung! I m-murdered my own p-parents t-to avenge m-my brother… My whole family was killed because of me!”

    The Emperor was disconsolate. I had no idea what I could do, what I could say, to try and make things better for him. But now I understood why he was so shocked to see me, why he was so emotional when he met me. I had gone and dredged up all of these old feelings about his family just by being around.

    I laid my hand on his shoulder.

    “Not your whole family, Acton,”


    How it Should Have Been

    (or Dancing in the Moonlight)


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    Well, it certainly had been an eventful day.

    The Emperor had taken our warning of the Crownbreakers with great seriousness, and within a few hours, it seemed like the whole capitol city was preparing for war. He had us spread the warning to all of his generals and he himself had even sent word to the ten Dukes. It seemed like all of Geridia was waiting with feverish anticipation for the Crownbreakers, but he still seemed preoccupied with Natalia.

    Honestly, I was too.

    She just kept acting stranger and stranger as the day went on, when the Emperor gave her her own room in the palace, she just disappeared into it. I had to know what was wrong.

    But something held me back. Only when it was late at night was I able gather enough courage to speak to her. And even then, I must have stood outside her door for ages before even trying to knock.

    But finally, I managed to gain enough composure to act. I opened the door.

    She was sitting on her bed, apparently lost in thought. Pale moonlight poured in from her window, illuminating her slender form, her long, golden hair glowing in the soft light. Gods, she was so beautiful.

    “Tali?” I asked hesitantly as I entered. “Can we talk?”

    She looked up in shock when I spoke.

    “Oh! Varen!” she said, surprised. “Why are you here?”

    “I’m worried about you,” I said. “You’ve been acting strangely recently, and I want to know if you’re alright,”

    “What is it with you?” She gave a slight laugh. “I’m perfectly fine. You don’t need to worry about me,” She tried to give me a reassuring smile.

    “But I do,” I said. “You’ve barely spoken to me in weeks, and you hardly ever even look at me. Why? Have I done something wrong? Are you ashamed of me? Do you not really love me…?” I was starting to get choked up. “Please Tali… I’m afraid I’m going to lose you,”

    Natalia turned away from me, and just sat in silence for what seemed like ages. Then, slowly, she began to roll back her dress, revealing a tiny scabbard that had been tied around her leg. Carefully, she unsheathed a long, slender knife and laid it on the bed.

    “Why?” she turned to me. “Because I was going to break your heart,” Her large blue eyes seemed to be staring right through me. “I was going to kill the Emperor, and I was going to tear you apart… But maybe if we weren’t so close anymore, neither of us would have been hurt as much. At least that’s what I thought,” she kept getting quieter and quieter as she spoke. “And then I just couldn’t bring myself to kill him… He really wasn’t what I thought…”

    A chill ran down my spine. I was absolutely stunned. I had no idea what to think. She had just confessed that she had planned to murder the Emperor! I thought that she had changed! I thought that she was through with the Crownbreakers! I was stressed and confused, but as I looked at her, as I saw her pained expression, I knew that there had to be more going on than what I was thinking. And Gods, no matter what, I would love her. So not knowing what to think, I walked over to the bed and sat down next to her.

    “Tali, what is going on?”

    She sighed heavily.

    “One year ago, I met my father for the first time since I was seven years old,” she said sadly. “He was at the ruins of the monastery, with Father Daugherty. He said that the Emperor was behind the attack, that he was trying to kill me to ensure his claim to the throne would be safe!” she kept getting more and more agitated as she spoke. “So I had to take over the Crownbreakers! I had to lead them, to do everything in my power to strike out against the Emperor! So when you finally gave me a chance to see the Emperor face-to face, I had to be prepared to kill him! He had to be evil! That would have been the only way that I could have justified my actions! That would have been the only way I could have ever brought out a greater good from the deaths of all of those innocent people! But after meeting him, after getting to know him, there is just no way that it could have been him!” she broke down into tears. Not knowing what else to do, I tentatively grasped her hand in mine. “Gods,” she laid her head against my shoulder. “I’m a complete failure! Everything that I’ve done has been for nothing! I’m worthless!”

    “No,” I said firmly. “You are anything but. You’ve made mistakes, and you’ve done things that you regret, but it’s never too late to start over, to finally make things right. Now you know the truth of the situation, and now you can finally act. There’s still just so much that you can do!” She smiled through her tears and squeezed my hand appreciatively.

    “Start over, huh?” She laughed again, but this time she seemed genuinely happy.

    The next thing I knew, she had wrapped her arms tightly around my neck and her lips were locked tightly around mine. I became lost in the moment. It seemed to go on forever, but when she finally pulled her lips away from mine, it seemed far too short.

    “This,” she murmured. “This is how it should have been,”

    Then, she pushed me down into the bed.
    I have nothing bad to say about either of them! The emperor's walls-of-text were well, wallish, but there's nothing you can do about that really. I enjoyed them both. Loved the ending of the last one

    I promise I am still writing! Time and inspiration have been in short supply, but I'm on holiday now so I'll have more time.. maybe... I'm also under doctor's orders to stay off the computer as much as possible...


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  23. - Top - End - #323
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Machuchang's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    I promise I am still writing! Time and inspiration have been in short supply, but I'm on holiday now so I'll have more time.. maybe... I'm also under doctor's orders to stay off the computer as much as possible...
    Hope you have a great holiday, and that you get better soon! I am greatly looking forward to your triumphant return.

  24. - Top - End - #324
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Lady Moreta's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Machuchang View Post
    Hope you have a great holiday, and that you get better soon! I am greatly looking forward to your triumphant return.
    Eh right now I'm trying to fight the paranoia that surgery will end up being the only option I'm paranoid and I freely admit that, doesn't mean it makes me feel any better though

    I will probably still write. I was looking forward to doing some writing while on holiday...


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  25. - Top - End - #325
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    Default Re: D&D Snippets

    hey everybody, I still haven't had time to sit down and read all the new stuff (an awesome girlfriend, holidays, and other stuff been keeping me busy)

    but to help bring in the new year, I've rolled up about 15 new characters.... and they all need back stories


    loook forward to a huge mass of text soon. (likely the day after new years)


    happy new years everybody
    and I hope you all had a great christmas
    my awesome knight riding a bulette avatar was made by smuchmuch
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    teej has quotes
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    Quote Originally Posted by Occasional Sage View Post
    big teej, you are the GitP forum with legs.
    Quote Originally Posted by McSmack View Post
    Or if you're feeling saucy you can remind him that it's not a democracy, it's a Teej-tatorship, and he'd best remember that.
    Quote Originally Posted by IthroZada View Post
    I imagine Cenobites to be what you get when you mash together the Book of Erotic Fantasy and the Book of Vile Darkness.

    if I've gone quiet in a pbp we share, PM ME! this means I'm not getting updates!

  26. - Top - End - #326
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Marillion's Avatar

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    Hello all. I just finished a snippet for a character I'm hoping to get into a game, and I'd like to know what you think.

    Broken Promises, Broken Wings
    Or, One Last Job

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    "Excuse me, sir, how much for this loaf?"
    The gnome popped out from behind his oddly plain cart, grey tufts poking out over his ears. Was he standing on a box? "EH!?"
    Oh, fantastic. He's hard of hearing. Derrick raised his voice. "HOW MUCH-"
    "TEN COPPER."
    "Ten copper!? That's absurd."
    "EH!?"
    "THAT'S ABSURD. I CAN SEE WHERE THE RATS HAVE NIBBLED THE ENDS OFF."
    "TEN COPPER."
    Derrick blew through his lips, disturbing a lock of brownish hair that'd fallen into his eye, and dug out his worryingly light purse. He weighed it in his rough hands, mentally calculating what meager finances he had left.
    "I can gi- I CAN GIVE YOU FIVE."
    "TEN COPPER."
    "EIGHT, AND THAT'S AS HIGH AS I CAN GO."
    "NO SALE!" The wizened creature struck his hand on the side of the cart, then hopped back down out of sight, leaving his cart unguarded. Almost subconsciously, Derrick's hand reached forward.
    It's right there. I could just take it. It's one loaf of bread...No. I promised. A whisper responded in his mind unbidden, a whisper that sounded of youth and worry-free days. Yeah, well, you've promised lots of things to lots of people. What's one promise, give or take? What's the difference? He stretched further, before snatching his hand back and turning away briskly. Her. I promised her. That's the difference.

    Derrick walked away, trying to reconcile his promise with Simons' empty stomach. Perhaps there was yet another merchant still selling at this hour...
    "STOP!"
    Derrick froze, his heart racing. What now? He hadn't even taken anything! He almost broke out running, but calmed himself. If he ran, he'd look guilty. Instead, he turned to face the voice, willing an expression of bemusement onto his visage. The wrinkled gnome was...not walking, so much as wobbling in Derricks' general direction, clutching something under his robes.
    "What seems to be the trouble, sir?" The merchant glared up at him, eyes seeming to peer into his mind, and from 2 and a half feet down that's no mean feat. He grunted, then thrust his hands out.
    "HERE. TAKE IT."
    Derrick glanced at the gnome's hands, then back to the gnome. "I... I can't..."
    "TAKE."
    Derrick reached out his hand, palm-up, and choked back a tear as the coin sang in his hands. "Thank you."
    "NOW BUY." The gnome half-walked, half-waddled back to his cart and hopped back onto his box. Derrick followed him, exchanging his coin for a mostly-clean loaf of day-old bread. The gnome leaned in, lowering his voice. "The other merchants, they tell me about you. They tell me...You're good man. You try. You have child."
    "I'm a charity case." Derrick whispered to himself.
    "Better in charity case than in pine case, eh? Now go home. If anyone ask, you rob me."
    "You...can hear me?"
    "EH!?"
    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    "DADDYYY!!!" A sugar-blur ran into Derrick's knees and hugged him tightly, holding on as though he'd been gone for a year instead of just a day. Derrick laughed, kneeling down to hug his son back with one arm, keeping the loaf of bread from being crushed.
    "Ohh, Simon I missed you!"
    "Daddy a man came over an' he an' Nana talked for a while an' she got sad for a bit but then it was ok an' then he played dwarves an' gobbins with me, an' I got to be the dwarf! An' then-"
    Derrick laughed, tustling the shock of red hair Simon had inherited from his mother. "You always get to be the dwarf! Where's Nana?"
    "She's in the kitchen, starting dinner. It's mystery stew, and it smells delicious. Frankly, it's a shame I can't stay."
    A chill ran down Derrick's spine. That voice... He stood, and faced the man. It was him...
    "Simon, buddy, take this and go give it to Nana, ok? Your friend and I need to talk." The child ran into the kitchen clutching the bread. "So Gavin...How have you been?" Without a word, the stranger who'd been Derrick's best friend crossed the room and wrapped Derrick in a hug that seemed to span years.
    "I heard about Lark, Derrick. I'm so sorry."

    ----------------------------------------

    On rickety stairs outside a decrepit old house sat two men, laughing and passing a bottle between them. Where one was tall and strong the other was short and slight; Where one was dark, the other was fair. One had eyes the color of a clear sky, while the others were the green of foam on an ocean wave. If one of them had a tail, they could not have appeared more different; and yet, a passerby could scarce distinguish between them.
    "Six MONTHS, you bastard!"
    "How was I s'posed to know it was a gift from his grandpa? It was a belt!"
    "He still wears it, you know."
    "Really?"
    "Yeah. Hikes up his pants every time he passes me in the street too!" At this they both burst into laughter. Gavin passed the bottle, and Derrick took a long swig. Suddenly sombre, Derrick kept talking. "Six months. And...You weren't there."
    "No, but Lark was." Gavin said, with perhaps more bitterness than he intended.
    "Wha's that s'posed to mean?"
    "Nothing, Derrick. I...I'm sorry. I just..." He paused, wistful longing passing across his face. "I mean, I figured she could never...I mean, I'm not that great a guy, I knew what my chances were, but watching her pine over you...It was more than I could stand. Not to mention how pissed she was at me for talking you into that. I just thought...I dunno, I thought maybe if I left for a little bit, it'd help me get things in focus, y'know? I didn't mean to be gone as long as I was."
    Confusion was chased from Derrick's face by realization. "You and she...?" Derrick paused, fearing to speak the rest aloud.
    "No. It was all me. I don't think she even knew I felt that way. After I left, I traveled the continent. I saw a lot of things, things I thought I'd never get to see, and I had some truly amazing experiences, but my thoughts kept coming back to her, how happy she'd be, what she would say if she saw what I saw. But you know something, Derrick? I'm glad. You made her happier than I've ever seen her. It was like, when she was with you, nothing could possibly be wrong in her world."
    "I felt the same way." Derrick whispered, fingering the locket hidden under his shirt.
    "I know. That's why I couldn't stand in your way."
    "I miss her, Gavin." It contained a lock of Larks' hair, and a portrait of them created by a wandering bard on their wedding day.
    "I miss her too."
    "I try to be strong for Simon, but it's so hard. I never knew how much I needed her, until..." How she'd smiled and laughed that day!
    "I know."
    "I made her a promise, the day we knew about Simon." Auburn curls glistening in the sun, eyes the color of a doe's coat, full red lips that were always parted ever so slightly. "I promised her I'd straighten out my life. No more stealing, even if times were tough." The look in her eyes when she'd made the vows..."I needed to set a good example for Simon." Her kiss, as though it was their first all over again, a promise of their life...
    "That's why I'm here, Derrick. I had a long talk with Nana. She told me how tough things have been for you, how hard you've been trying. She's worried that you won't have a place to live this time next month. But I can change that."
    Still staring at his shoes, Derrick asked "What do you mean?"
    "I mean..." Gavin slid closer, lowering his voice. "Two thousand gold pieces are moving through the docks tonight. I know which warehouse, which crate, which guards are on duty, everything. But I need your help getting in."
    Derrick scooted away, shaking his head. "No, Gavin. I told you. I'm clean now."
    "Derrick, listen -"
    "No! I made her a promise. I can't go back on it, not now."
    "Derrick, please. You won't be making this a lifestyle. Even if we only take 20 apiece, that'll set us up for life!"
    Something stirred within Derrick, his fingers twitching as he moved the pins in an imaginary lock. "But...My promise..."
    "Derrick, I loved her too. I know what a promise to her means. But you can't keep promises based on the past. What about Simon? How many times have you had to choose between feeding him and feeding yourself?"
    "It was never a choice."
    "Of course not, Derrick. But you need to take the best care of him you can, whatever that means. If you come with me, you'll never have to worry about where he's going to sleep or what he's going to eat. You need to do this, not for me, not for yourself, but for Simon." Gavin laid his hand on Derrick's shoulder. "For Lark."
    For my little songbird...

    -------------------------------------------------------

    Derrick retched, gasping for air as another blow sank into his stomach.
    "Where is it!?"
    Panting between words, Derrick hissed "I don't know what you're talking about." He cried out in pain as a fist the size of a gnome's head thudded into him.
    "Don't be stupid! We know you took it!"
    "Took WHAT!?" Derrick tensed, awaiting the impact of a blow that never came. Instead, there was only the clack of boot-heels on stone. Derrick couldn't see very well through his swollen eyes, but they sounded expensive.
    "Come now, Derrick." A manicured voice, smooth like silk. "Give it up."
    "I don't know what you want from me!" Silk-covered fingers grabbed his raw chin, turning his head this way and that. For a moment, Derrick thought he felt those fingers in his very brain, but the moment passed.
    "I believe you."
    "Good! Now tell your goons to let me go."
    "Can't do that, I'm afraid. Whether or not you know what item we desire, you've still stolen from us. Quite a substantial amount, in fact. A hundred thousand gold pieces."
    "A hundred thou-! But he said..." Too late, Derrick bit his tongue.
    "Ahh, now we come closer to the truth of the matter. You weren't alone." Derrick remained silent. "And your friend skipped town, leaving you behind to take the brunt of our anger." Derrick refused to answer, but he didn't need to; The soft voice was speaking in statements, not questions. The fingers withdrew from Derrick's face, then suddenly whipped across his skull.
    "I am not." CRACK. "Entirely without sympathy." CRACK. "I know how difficult." CRACK. "It can be to raise." CRACK. "A child alone. But unfortunately, I can't simply let you go. Whatever gold you have is of no consequence. Money can be bought." CRACK. "Your friend, however, has something infinitely more valuable to us. Something that cannot be remade." CRACK. "So, what's going to happen is, I'm going to let you live, and you're going to find this person and retrieve what he stole from us."
    Spitting blood, Derrick took the opportunity to express his wishes that the voice should become suddenly and violently intimate with an entire tribe of Gnolls.
    "Give this up, Derrick. Your friend betrayed you. And besides...It would be a shame if anything were to happen to Simon. He's a cute one. Not so cute, however, as some children my other enemies have had. It would be a shame." The voice paused, allowing Derricks' imagination to end that sentence in the most horrifying way it could. Often, the best threats were left unspoken. "We have an arrangement then. Do as I wish, and nothing will happen to your child. You will likely still die, of course, but your son will be safe. Find. Your. Friend."
    Pain thundered across Derrick's temples, and then the voice, and everything, was silent.

    ----------------------------------------------------------
    "Excuse me, sir, do you remem-"
    "EH!?"
    Derrick rolled his still-sore eyes. "DO YOU REMEMBER THE MAN WHO BOUGHT THE DWARVEN DRINK FROM YOU TWO WEEKS AGO?"
    "OF COURSE I REMEMBER."
    "TALL, DARK HAIR, BLUE-"
    "I SAID I REMEMBER. WHAT ABOUT HIM?"
    "HAVE YOU SEEN HIM SINCE THEN?"
    "NO."
    Derrick swore under his breath. "THANK YOU ANYWAY."
    "I HEARD HIM THOUGH."
    "But...you...can't?"
    "EH!?"
    Confused, nevertheless Derrick pressed on. "WHAT DID YOU HEAR?"
    "FRIEND TOLD ME ABOUT STRANGE MAN. TALL, DARK HAIR, BLUE-"
    "I KNOW WHAT HE LOOKS LIKE."
    "ASKING ABOUT PASSAGE AND SECURITY."
    "PASSAGE WHERE? FOR WHAT?"
    "SOMEWHERE NORTH. WOULDN'T SAY."
    "But....Why go north?" Derrick mused to himself.
    In a normal voice, the gnome answered "Haven't you heard about the gold rush?"
    "EH!?"
    "HAVEN'T YOU HEARD ABOUT THE GOLD RUSH?"
    "OF COURSE I HAVE. And he certainly doesn't need any more gold than he has..."
    "WELL, GOLD'S NOT ALL THAT'S UP THERE."
    "WHAT ELSE?"
    "SNOW MOSTLY."
    Well, if he's going up there, I guess I have to follow him."
    "Good luck, friend. Don't worry, I take good care of your son. He won't be hungry while you're gone."
    Derrick swallowed, suddenly paranoid. Was this gnome...No, he was just being a good neighbor. "Thank you."
    "You're welcome." The gnome leaned across his cart. "And I don't want to worry you, but your hearing weak. See cleric."
    Derrick went cross-eyed momentarily, unsure if the gnome was kidding or just insane. He shrugged it off, and bid goodbye.

    An hour later, he had secured passage to the Northlands on the Eisblume, and they left the next day. He stood on the deck, hands clutching his locket.
    I'm sorry, my songbird. I promise, I'll fix this. I'll find Gavin, I'll take back what he stole, and I'll keep Simon safe. You have my word...I'll never break another promise to you again.

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    P.S: Yes, the gnome's speaking patterns are inconsistent. That was semi-intentional
    Quote Originally Posted by Xefas View Post
    I like my women like I like my coffee; 10 feet tall, incomprehensible to the human psyche, and capable of ending life as a triviality.

  27. - Top - End - #327
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Lady Moreta's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marillion View Post
    Hello all. I just finished a snippet for a character I'm hoping to get into a game, and I'd like to know what you think.

    Broken Promises, Broken Wings
    Or, One Last Job

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    "Excuse me, sir, how much for this loaf?"
    The gnome popped out from behind his oddly plain cart, grey tufts poking out over his ears. Was he standing on a box? "EH!?"
    Oh, fantastic. He's hard of hearing. Derrick raised his voice. "HOW MUCH-"
    "TEN COPPER."
    "Ten copper!? That's absurd."
    "EH!?"
    "THAT'S ABSURD. I CAN SEE WHERE THE RATS HAVE NIBBLED THE ENDS OFF."
    "TEN COPPER."
    Derrick blew through his lips, disturbing a lock of brownish hair that'd fallen into his eye, and dug out his worryingly light purse. He weighed it in his rough hands, mentally calculating what meager finances he had left.
    "I can gi- I CAN GIVE YOU FIVE."
    "TEN COPPER."
    "EIGHT, AND THAT'S AS HIGH AS I CAN GO."
    "NO SALE!" The wizened creature struck his hand on the side of the cart, then hopped back down out of sight, leaving his cart unguarded. Almost subconsciously, Derrick's hand reached forward.
    It's right there. I could just take it. It's one loaf of bread...No. I promised. A whisper responded in his mind unbidden, a whisper that sounded of youth and worry-free days. Yeah, well, you've promised lots of things to lots of people. What's one promise, give or take? What's the difference? He stretched further, before snatching his hand back and turning away briskly. Her. I promised her. That's the difference.

    Derrick walked away, trying to reconcile his promise with Simons' empty stomach. Perhaps there was yet another merchant still selling at this hour...
    "STOP!"
    Derrick froze, his heart racing. What now? He hadn't even taken anything! He almost broke out running, but calmed himself. If he ran, he'd look guilty. Instead, he turned to face the voice, willing an expression of bemusement onto his visage. The wrinkled gnome was...not walking, so much as wobbling in Derricks' general direction, clutching something under his robes.
    "What seems to be the trouble, sir?" The merchant glared up at him, eyes seeming to peer into his mind, and from 2 and a half feet down that's no mean feat. He grunted, then thrust his hands out.
    "HERE. TAKE IT."
    Derrick glanced at the gnome's hands, then back to the gnome. "I... I can't..."
    "TAKE."
    Derrick reached out his hand, palm-up, and choked back a tear as the coin sang in his hands. "Thank you."
    "NOW BUY." The gnome half-walked, half-waddled back to his cart and hopped back onto his box. Derrick followed him, exchanging his coin for a mostly-clean loaf of day-old bread. The gnome leaned in, lowering his voice. "The other merchants, they tell me about you. They tell me...You're good man. You try. You have child."
    "I'm a charity case." Derrick whispered to himself.
    "Better in charity case than in pine case, eh? Now go home. If anyone ask, you rob me."
    "You...can hear me?"
    "EH!?"
    ---------------------------------------------------------------

    "DADDYYY!!!" A sugar-blur ran into Derrick's knees and hugged him tightly, holding on as though he'd been gone for a year instead of just a day. Derrick laughed, kneeling down to hug his son back with one arm, keeping the loaf of bread from being crushed.
    "Ohh, Simon I missed you!"
    "Daddy a man came over an' he an' Nana talked for a while an' she got sad for a bit but then it was ok an' then he played dwarves an' gobbins with me, an' I got to be the dwarf! An' then-"
    Derrick laughed, tustling the shock of red hair Simon had inherited from his mother. "You always get to be the dwarf! Where's Nana?"
    "She's in the kitchen, starting dinner. It's mystery stew, and it smells delicious. Frankly, it's a shame I can't stay."
    A chill ran down Derrick's spine. That voice... He stood, and faced the man. It was him...
    "Simon, buddy, take this and go give it to Nana, ok? Your friend and I need to talk." The child ran into the kitchen clutching the bread. "So Gavin...How have you been?" Without a word, the stranger who'd been Derrick's best friend crossed the room and wrapped Derrick in a hug that seemed to span years.
    "I heard about Lark, Derrick. I'm so sorry."

    ----------------------------------------

    On rickety stairs outside a decrepit old house sat two men, laughing and passing a bottle between them. Where one was tall and strong the other was short and slight; Where one was dark, the other was fair. One had eyes the color of a clear sky, while the others were the green of foam on an ocean wave. If one of them had a tail, they could not have appeared more different; and yet, a passerby could scarce distinguish between them.
    "Six MONTHS, you bastard!"
    "How was I s'posed to know it was a gift from his grandpa? It was a belt!"
    "He still wears it, you know."
    "Really?"
    "Yeah. Hikes up his pants every time he passes me in the street too!" At this they both burst into laughter. Gavin passed the bottle, and Derrick took a long swig. Suddenly sombre, Derrick kept talking. "Six months. And...You weren't there."
    "No, but Lark was." Gavin said, with perhaps more bitterness than he intended.
    "Wha's that s'posed to mean?"
    "Nothing, Derrick. I...I'm sorry. I just..." He paused, wistful longing passing across his face. "I mean, I figured she could never...I mean, I'm not that great a guy, I knew what my chances were, but watching her pine over you...It was more than I could stand. Not to mention how pissed she was at me for talking you into that. I just thought...I dunno, I thought maybe if I left for a little bit, it'd help me get things in focus, y'know? I didn't mean to be gone as long as I was."
    Confusion was chased from Derrick's face by realization. "You and she...?" Derrick paused, fearing to speak the rest aloud.
    "No. It was all me. I don't think she even knew I felt that way. After I left, I traveled the continent. I saw a lot of things, things I thought I'd never get to see, and I had some truly amazing experiences, but my thoughts kept coming back to her, how happy she'd be, what she would say if she saw what I saw. But you know something, Derrick? I'm glad. You made her happier than I've ever seen her. It was like, when she was with you, nothing could possibly be wrong in her world."
    "I felt the same way." Derrick whispered, fingering the locket hidden under his shirt.
    "I know. That's why I couldn't stand in your way."
    "I miss her, Gavin." It contained a lock of Larks' hair, and a portrait of them created by a wandering bard on their wedding day.
    "I miss her too."
    "I try to be strong for Simon, but it's so hard. I never knew how much I needed her, until..." How she'd smiled and laughed that day!
    "I know."
    "I made her a promise, the day we knew about Simon." Auburn curls glistening in the sun, eyes the color of a doe's coat, full red lips that were always parted ever so slightly. "I promised her I'd straighten out my life. No more stealing, even if times were tough." The look in her eyes when she'd made the vows..."I needed to set a good example for Simon." Her kiss, as though it was their first all over again, a promise of their life...
    "That's why I'm here, Derrick. I had a long talk with Nana. She told me how tough things have been for you, how hard you've been trying. She's worried that you won't have a place to live this time next month. But I can change that."
    Still staring at his shoes, Derrick asked "What do you mean?"
    "I mean..." Gavin slid closer, lowering his voice. "Two thousand gold pieces are moving through the docks tonight. I know which warehouse, which crate, which guards are on duty, everything. But I need your help getting in."
    Derrick scooted away, shaking his head. "No, Gavin. I told you. I'm clean now."
    "Derrick, listen -"
    "No! I made her a promise. I can't go back on it, not now."
    "Derrick, please. You won't be making this a lifestyle. Even if we only take 20 apiece, that'll set us up for life!"
    Something stirred within Derrick, his fingers twitching as he moved the pins in an imaginary lock. "But...My promise..."
    "Derrick, I loved her too. I know what a promise to her means. But you can't keep promises based on the past. What about Simon? How many times have you had to choose between feeding him and feeding yourself?"
    "It was never a choice."
    "Of course not, Derrick. But you need to take the best care of him you can, whatever that means. If you come with me, you'll never have to worry about where he's going to sleep or what he's going to eat. You need to do this, not for me, not for yourself, but for Simon." Gavin laid his hand on Derrick's shoulder. "For Lark."
    For my little songbird...

    -------------------------------------------------------

    Derrick retched, gasping for air as another blow sank into his stomach.
    "Where is it!?"
    Panting between words, Derrick hissed "I don't know what you're talking about." He cried out in pain as a fist the size of a gnome's head thudded into him.
    "Don't be stupid! We know you took it!"
    "Took WHAT!?" Derrick tensed, awaiting the impact of a blow that never came. Instead, there was only the clack of boot-heels on stone. Derrick couldn't see very well through his swollen eyes, but they sounded expensive.
    "Come now, Derrick." A manicured voice, smooth like silk. "Give it up."
    "I don't know what you want from me!" Silk-covered fingers grabbed his raw chin, turning his head this way and that. For a moment, Derrick thought he felt those fingers in his very brain, but the moment passed.
    "I believe you."
    "Good! Now tell your goons to let me go."
    "Can't do that, I'm afraid. Whether or not you know what item we desire, you've still stolen from us. Quite a substantial amount, in fact. A hundred thousand gold pieces."
    "A hundred thou-! But he said..." Too late, Derrick bit his tongue.
    "Ahh, now we come closer to the truth of the matter. You weren't alone." Derrick remained silent. "And your friend skipped town, leaving you behind to take the brunt of our anger." Derrick refused to answer, but he didn't need to; The soft voice was speaking in statements, not questions. The fingers withdrew from Derrick's face, then suddenly whipped across his skull.
    "I am not." CRACK. "Entirely without sympathy." CRACK. "I know how difficult." CRACK. "It can be to raise." CRACK. "A child alone. But unfortunately, I can't simply let you go. Whatever gold you have is of no consequence. Money can be bought." CRACK. "Your friend, however, has something infinitely more valuable to us. Something that cannot be remade." CRACK. "So, what's going to happen is, I'm going to let you live, and you're going to find this person and retrieve what he stole from us."
    Spitting blood, Derrick took the opportunity to express his wishes that the voice should become suddenly and violently intimate with an entire tribe of Gnolls.
    "Give this up, Derrick. Your friend betrayed you. And besides...It would be a shame if anything were to happen to Simon. He's a cute one. Not so cute, however, as some children my other enemies have had. It would be a shame." The voice paused, allowing Derricks' imagination to end that sentence in the most horrifying way it could. Often, the best threats were left unspoken. "We have an arrangement then. Do as I wish, and nothing will happen to your child. You will likely still die, of course, but your son will be safe. Find. Your. Friend."
    Pain thundered across Derrick's temples, and then the voice, and everything, was silent.

    ----------------------------------------------------------
    "Excuse me, sir, do you remem-"
    "EH!?"
    Derrick rolled his still-sore eyes. "DO YOU REMEMBER THE MAN WHO BOUGHT THE DWARVEN DRINK FROM YOU TWO WEEKS AGO?"
    "OF COURSE I REMEMBER."
    "TALL, DARK HAIR, BLUE-"
    "I SAID I REMEMBER. WHAT ABOUT HIM?"
    "HAVE YOU SEEN HIM SINCE THEN?"
    "NO."
    Derrick swore under his breath. "THANK YOU ANYWAY."
    "I HEARD HIM THOUGH."
    "But...you...can't?"
    "EH!?"
    Confused, nevertheless Derrick pressed on. "WHAT DID YOU HEAR?"
    "FRIEND TOLD ME ABOUT STRANGE MAN. TALL, DARK HAIR, BLUE-"
    "I KNOW WHAT HE LOOKS LIKE."
    "ASKING ABOUT PASSAGE AND SECURITY."
    "PASSAGE WHERE? FOR WHAT?"
    "SOMEWHERE NORTH. WOULDN'T SAY."
    "But....Why go north?" Derrick mused to himself.
    In a normal voice, the gnome answered "Haven't you heard about the gold rush?"
    "EH!?"
    "HAVEN'T YOU HEARD ABOUT THE GOLD RUSH?"
    "OF COURSE I HAVE. And he certainly doesn't need any more gold than he has..."
    "WELL, GOLD'S NOT ALL THAT'S UP THERE."
    "WHAT ELSE?"
    "SNOW MOSTLY."
    Well, if he's going up there, I guess I have to follow him."
    "Good luck, friend. Don't worry, I take good care of your son. He won't be hungry while you're gone."
    Derrick swallowed, suddenly paranoid. Was this gnome...No, he was just being a good neighbor. "Thank you."
    "You're welcome." The gnome leaned across his cart. "And I don't want to worry you, but your hearing weak. See cleric."
    Derrick went cross-eyed momentarily, unsure if the gnome was kidding or just insane. He shrugged it off, and bid goodbye.

    An hour later, he had secured passage to the Northlands on the Eisblume, and they left the next day. He stood on the deck, hands clutching his locket.
    I'm sorry, my songbird. I promise, I'll fix this. I'll find Gavin, I'll take back what he stole, and I'll keep Simon safe. You have my word...I'll never break another promise to you again.

    Spoiler
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    P.S: Yes, the gnome's speaking patterns are inconsistent. That was semi-intentional
    Awww, I like this one I think the gnome might have been my favourite character - he certainly was a character

    Two things confuse me a little - one 'a sugar-blur'? is that meant to suggest Simon was hyped up on sugar or something?

    Only other thing was that in the scene with just Derrick and Gavin talking it was a bit hard to figure out who was talking when. I suppose overall it's not that important, but not being able to tell who's talking is one of my pet peeves.


    My Characters
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  28. - Top - End - #328
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Lady Moreta's Avatar

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    Perth, Australia
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    Default Re: D&D Snippets

    Hey! I wrote a new snippet! Our RL group just started up again and we had our first game yesterday. Inspiration struck (which it hasn't been doing with anything else) so I went for it and wrote this...

    Poniard of Death
    or, I Knew That Thing Was Bad

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    I have a headache, and I feel sick. It’s probably that damn dagger. Ugh. I can’t believe what I did to that man. I mean yeah, okay, human and male, not the best combination, but still – I can only think of one man I’d willingly do that to – and this guy wasn’t him.

    We’d finished the fight, Nera and Rifus had controlled themselves nicely and we had three mages and five of the soldiers unconscious and awaiting our interrogation. Okay, my interrogation. Tanc woke one of the men and took up his place behind him, ready to make a grab in case he went for me. As he always does. He’s really not that bad – for a human male. I still had the black poniard in my hand, Rifus had given it back to me after checking it for magical auras.

    “You know the drill. I ask the questions and you answer them,” I said. No response.

    “Okay, let me try and actual question. Where were you going?” Nothing.

    “Where did the other mages go?” No response.

    “What’s in the box?” Nothing. I hate these fanatics, I really do. It’s impossible to get anything out of them. My hands tightened into fists in frustration and I felt the hilt of the poniard in my right hand. It was obviously important and Rifus had confirmed it was magical, though not what it did exactly. It was worth a try.

    I stepped forwards, brandishing the weapon, I glared and lowered my voice,

    “You will start giving me some answers, or-” I never finished the sentence. He flung himself forwards onto the damn poniard! Before Tanc could grab him or I could pull away he’d stuck himself with it. He stared up at me, his eyes boring into mine. They were full of madness.

    “Damn.” I swore, carefully pulling the poniard from his side. As much as I wouldn’t weep for such as these, I also didn’t want them and their valuable information skewering themselves!

    “I don’t think they’re going to talk,” I admitted ruefully.

    “It’s always the same,” Nera grumbled. “These guys never want to talk. It’s starting to piss me off.”

    “Me too,” I agreed with a grim smile. “Time to try the next stage I think.”

    “Which guy?” Tanc asked, looking over all our options.

    “Same one I think,” I replied. “No point in waking up more than we need.” I could see Lester shaking his head out of the corner of my eye. “It won’t hurt him my Lord, it’ll just make him – tractable.” He grimaced, apparently still not impressed. I shrugged and turned away from him. If he still has a problem with how we do business after all this time well – that’s his problem, not mine. Right now, my problem was gasping on his knees in front of me.

    I took my time with this spell, I didn’t want to chance it failing. I spoke the commands carefully and wove my hands in the accompanying gestures with all the accuracy my dancer’s training could afford. Finally I reached down and stroked my hand down the side of his face, gently, as a lover would. I managed to hide how much it disgusted me from my friends.

    I had him. I knew it the minute I released the spell. His mind was my own – completely dominated.

    He screamed. I stared in disbelief – I hadn’t done anything! He screamed again and clutched at his head. His whole body jerked to a stiff, jerking halt and he threw back his head, still screaming. With a high-pitched wail he tipped over backwards and blood exploded from his eyes, his nose, his ears. Then it was all over. He was dead.

    Tanc let out a choked cry of disgust and pulled away from the blood. Rifus and Nera both let loose startled cries and Lester hurried forwards. I stared dumbfounded, my hands falling open and my mouth not far behind.

    “But! But, I didn’t do anything!” I cried. “And even if I had, I had him, that spell shouldn’t have had that affect. What happened?” I was baffled. I took a step towards him, as if his body would answer my questions. As I did so, my toe nudged the poniard. I stared down at it, unblinking and stupid. I must have dropped it in my surprise. Then...

    “Rifus!” I rounded on him, “what did you say this dagger did?”

    “I didn’t,” he replied. “Strong aura of necromancy evil, I think it acts in a similar way to those rings these guys wear.”

    The rings... What were they called? Rings of the Fanatic? The rings that killed a man if they failed to defend their minds against a compulsion effect. And what were most of my spells? Compulsion. And what had that man just thrown himself on? That dagger. And what had...

    I snatched the poniard off the ground and holding it horizontally shoved it at Rifus.

    “Take another look!” I demanded. “I need to know exactly what that poniard does.”

    “All right, all right. Don’t get your pants in a twist,” he said mildly, taking the weapon from me and screwing his monocle into his eye. The others crowded around curious, but I refused to explain. I wanted to know if I was right first.

    “Yup, it acts just like one of the rings,” Rifus said after a while, taking the monocle out of his eye. “Get stuck with it and – well, just pray no one like Silver here casts a spell on you any time soon.” He clapped me on the shoulder and grinned, offering the poniard back to me. I didn’t take it. I suddenly felt sick.

    “What?” He asked, looking confused. “It’s a pretty cool when you do that. Like earlier when you killed that bunch with a spell... What was it?”

    “It wasn’t a spell. It was one of my new dances – the wearying one,” I replied absently. “And it’s NOT cool!” I snatched the dagger away from him, holding it warily by the hilt. “Someone-” I turned slightly and pointed at the dead man with the dagger, “him in fact, stabbed me with this thing!”

    There was silence for a moment, then

    “Oh, well, we’ll just make sure spellcasters stay away from you-” Nera began, only to be interrupted by Rifus.

    “Oh. Oh dear. Uhhh... that’s not all the dagger does,” he said, sounding upset. I ran through elven curses in my head then faced him.

    “All right,” I sighed. “Tell me the worst.”

    “It – er... well, it... ummm... Itslowlykillsanyonewhogetsstabbedwithit,” he blurted it all out in a rush, sounding horribly upset. I didn’t blame him.

    Very slowly I turned to stare at Rifus, who was twisting a couple of fingers around each other, looking miserable. I stared. I could feel the blood draining from my face. The stunned silence of the others just made it worse. I’d just been condemned to death. Three weeks! It’d only been three weeks since the last time I’d been killed and had been brought back, thank the greedy Abarites. And now here we were, stuck in the middle of a foreign continent not even I had heard much about.

    “The good thing-” Rifus broke off, with a sheepish cough, “well, the not-so-bad thing at least. The ring effect will only last about 24 hours. So if we just stay clear of spellcasters you’ll be fine.”

    “Oh yes, fine,” I snapped. “I’ll be just peachy until this damn thing can kill me slowly! Wonderful!” I flung my arms up, forgetting I still held the damn blade and everyone ducked away from me. Now it was my turn to be sheepish. I lowered my arms and held out my hand, wanting someone to take this thing off me. No one did. I didn’t blame them.

    “Silver, you’ve been dead before. You got better,” Tanc said wryly. “We can fight this, we won’t lose you. I wouldn’t want to deprive
    The Mage’s Hand of your dancing,” he grinned at me. I glared at him and Lester came up behind me, resting a hand in the small of my back. I was so upset I forgot to move away from him. After all this time, idiot paladin still hasn’t realised I don’t like being touched.

    “Things this evil should be destroyed immediately,” he said, “before they can do any more harm.” He held out his hand for the poniard.

    “Well, it only has one charge left in it,” Rifus started. He broke off upon seeing my face and the face of Lester beside me. “You know what, let’s just get rid of it.”

    “But – what about getting healing for Silver?” Nera asked, “what if we need to show someone the dagger?”

    “Poniard,” I muttered, as Lester spoke over me.

    “I will try a restorative spell on the lady Silver later, that may help. Otherwise, we should only need the shards of the blade itself to show a cleric or paladin like myself. The weapon itself should be broken.”

    I nodded,

    “Just do it” I told him. “I’m willing to take my chances and I’d be happier without that thing wandering around.” He nodded gravely at me, then took the poniard off me and stepped away from us as we gathered in a tight little group around the dead solider. He carefully placed the poniard on the ground and unsheathed his sword, preparing himself for a blow. With a cry to his god he smote the blade – the hilt vanished in a flitter of black smoke, while the blade shattered into pieces. With care, Lester gathered them and wrapping them in a piece of cloth, tucked them away into his gear.

    “Well, what now?” Rifus asked, looking around the group.

    “What do you mean, ‘what now’?” Nera cried, “we go and find help for Silver!” Gods love the girl, she has a good heart.

    “Not right now,” I said. “This sort of thing won’t have an immediate affect, am I right?” Both Rifus and Lester nodded. “So right now we need to get every scrap of information out of these guys that we can. Lester, you said you had a couple of those speak-with-the-dead oils?”

    He nodded and stepped forward, pulling a small vial out of his pouch,

    “I suggest one of the mages-”
    “Use it on one of the mages-”

    Lester and Tanc spoke together and both chuckled.

    “Which one?” Lester asked, gesturing with the vial. Tanc shrugged and looked at the rest of us. Nera and I exchanged blank looks and shrugged at each other. Rifus looked between the three dead mages for a while and finally said

    “That one!” Pointing definitively to the one lying on the right, in rather horribly clashing robes of dark orange and tan. Lester nodded and walked to the corpse. Kneeling beside it he carefully worked the stopper free and with one hand spread the oil over the mage’s face. Behind him, Nera asked Rifus curiously,

    “How did you decide which mage?”

    “Eenie, meanie, minie, mo?” Rifus said, looking sheepish. Nera looked like she couldn’t believe her ears, then burst out laughing. I rolled my eyes behind them, idiot elf.

    “We should hurry, it won’t last long and we’ve only got three questions,” Lester said. This of course engendered a hasty discussion between the rest of us as to what we needed to know. It was obvious really and soon Lester was posing the first question.

    “What is inside this box, that is scanning so strongly as evil?”


    “The great source of knowledge.”

    “What is the nearest town to the location the other mages teleported themselves?”

    “Freemantown.”

    “Freeman-what?” Nera whispered, “what the heck sort of a name is that?

    “I dunno.”

    “Shut up guys,” I hissed. “It’s the largest settlement on the east coast. It was started here since the end of the Shadow War.” I waved my hand vaguely in the direction of the east coast, far more interested in the hurried conversation Tanc and Lester were having about what the third question should be – more details on the thing in the box, or more details on their location? Eventually the thing in the box won out and Lester concluded his questions with

    “Will whatever is in the box pose a direct danger should we open it?”


    “Yes.”

    Oh goody.

    Lester stood up, looking unhappy. He wiped his hands and tucked the empty vial back into his pack.

    “I strongly suggest we take the box with us. We should ensure it remains undisturbed until we reach a temple or some other hallowed ground and can investigate more closely. We will need a temple to help the lady Silver anyway. We can take care of this then.” He looked around, a little belligerent I thought. I don’t know that I blamed him. We didn’t always treat our paladin – friend, with the respect he received from everyone else on the Trade Coast. We – well, Nera – tended to belittle him at every opportunity and rarely bothered to listen when he spoke – except Tanc that is. They seemed to have an understanding the rest of us didn’t. Still, if he wasn’t used to it by now, that wasn’t my problem.

    For once there was no argument from anyone and we turned to the problem of transportation. Thanks to Tanc’s speed - gods that man can run!- Nera and I managed to calm enough of the horses to bear each of us and we left the horses that were attached to the wagon the ‘great source of knowledge’ was on and led them away. We were all ready to leave, when -

    “What way should we go?” Nera asked. Everyone stopped and stared round at each other, then all turned to me.

    “Why are you all looking at me?” I asked.

    “Because you usually know these things...?” Nera suggested.

    “And you’re most likely to know anything at all about this continent,” Tanc added.

    “Well I don’t!” I shot back. “You’re lucky I’d even heard the name Freemantown. Still,” I thought aloud, “settlements are going to be along the coastline probably and stick to watercourses. We either need a river or a road that leads to the coast.”

    “Rifus, go scout,” Tanc said, “take a look around and tell us what’s out there.” Rifus nodded and floated off, quickly vanishing to our sight. He was back again soon and dropped to the ground to tell us what he’d found.

    “There’s a river to the north, but it just flows through the forest, no road anywhere near it. The road is south and it goes along a ridge before coming to a valley. Couldn’t see anything else.”

    “There is likely a river in the valley and the road itself is heading in the right direction for the coast. Besides, where there’s a road there are people-”

    “And we should avoid sleeping out in the open, if we can,” Lester interjected. I simply nodded. He seemed awfully jumpy, but after the day I’d just had, my slow – and probably painful -death sentence and a mysterious wooden box that would kill us if we opened it – I wasn’t in the mood to take chances either.

    “The road it is then,” Tanc said turning his horse in that direction.


    And that is how we’ve ended up here, sheltering off the side of the road beneath some trees because we were unable to find shelter before nightfall. We’ve kept extra watches and slept even more uneasily than usual. Well, I assume Tanc, Nera and Lester slept worse than usual. I found it harder than usual to get into a trance, but Rifus? Well, nothing bothers Rifus. He’s probably fine.

    “Are you all right Silver?” Lester’s voice, coming out of the dim early morning light. He crawled awkwardly to join me, his armour only half on. “You look pale.”

    I automatically moved to help him, and it wasn’t until I had done up a couple of buckles and fought down the bile rising in my throat that it occurred to me to answer his question.

    “Actually, no, I don’t think I am. I feel – nauseous – and I have a horrible headache,” I dropped my head into my hands and felt Lester’s hand on my back. I didn’t bother to shake him off. That’s the second time in as many days I haven’t reacted to his touch. I must be losing mine.

    “We’ll get you help,” he assured me. “If need be, you can travel in the wagon.”

    “With the evil?” I said sceptically. “I appreciate the thought, but I think I’d rather ride.”

    “Is there anything we can do?” Nera asked, concerned. The others had gathered around us.

    “Yeah,” I said. “Stay away from me. I don’t want to throw up on anyone.” That got chuckles, but Tanc looked thoughtful.

    “Rifus, that rod of yours... would that help?”

    Rifus looked blank for a minute, then his face brightened and he pulled a slender rod from his pack.

    “Yeah, it should,” he said, handing it to me. I made no move to take it, just looked at him, with my ‘please explain’ expression. “It’s a rod of - bodily restoration. I use it to counteract the affects of my hellfire,” he grinned mischievously. “I don’t need it right now and it works three times a day anyway. Try it, see if it helps.” He pushed the wand at me and I took it. I eyed it briefly then touched it to the back of my left hand and activated it. I don’t know what it did, but it helped. The headache cleared and the nausea vanished like it had never existed.

    “Thank you Rifus,” I said, actually meaning it this time. “It really did help.”

    “No problem. Looks like this dagger-thing is going to drain you every morning. We’ll just counteract it with this every day until we can find someone to remove it permanently,” he grinned, looking and sounding utterly pleased with himself. Still grinning, he scrambled to shove the rod back into his pack and tugged his horse towards the road – we had convinced him that flying alongside us might be great fun for him, but wouldn’t make us the inconspicuous group of travellers we were trying to be. He shoved through the bush around the edge of the road and stepped out.

    As I watched he paused for a second, then immediately turned back to the rest of us.

    “Uh guys... I think we may have another problem...”


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  29. - Top - End - #329
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Machuchang's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lady Moreta View Post
    Hey! I wrote a new snippet! Our RL group just started up again and we had our first game yesterday. Inspiration struck (which it hasn't been doing with anything else) so I went for it and wrote this...

    Poniard of Death
    or, I Knew That Thing Was Bad
    Yay! You're back! And Silver's back too! I've been looking forward to this for quite a while, and you definitely followed through.

    The snippet was brilliant as usual. The dialogue was very nicely done, and I especially liked the parts about Freemantown and the Speak-With-Dead oil. What really impressed me was that you conveyed a dark, gritty mood but still managed to incorporate a good amount of humor. And of course, a nerve-wracking cliffhanger. I just hope everything turns out all right for Silver.

    I've also made a lot of progress in Varen and Natalia's campaign. And by that, I mean it's been completed. So I'm kind of at a loss for what to write next about them. Do I write about some of the cool adventures that happened way early on that haven't been touched on yet? Things that have been hinted at, but not shown? Just continue from where I left off until I get to the ending?

    I have no idea, so instead I just wrote about Abigail.

    A Party is Formed
    or, Why does everyone always meet in a tavern or prison anyway?

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    The prison was very dark, and very smelly, and very scary. I guess it made sense though. It was a prison after all, and prisons were supposed to be dark and smelly and scary. And now we were wandering through one, looking for some presumably dark and smelly and scary prisoners. It was all so very exciting!

    And soon enough, we had found them! Locked in two adjoining cells were some of the strangest people I had ever seen. In the first was a burly, brown-skinned dwarf with a hawk-like nose and one steely grey eye. His beard was really short for a dwarf and kind of bedraggled. He wore so many bandagey-looking things that he looked almost just like a mummy, if mummies wore armor and boots and weren‘t dead.

    The other was a tall, pale, human with long black hair and dark red eyes. He was incredibly skinny and wore a nasty smirk. Something about him made the hair on the back of my neck stand on end. If the dwarf was a mummy, then this guy was a vampire.

    Kurgan laughed when he saw them.

    “Eviss! Selhallen! Look who’s back, eh?” he was grinning so widely that I was pretty sure I could count all of his teeth.

    “Well, well, well! If it isn’t Kurgan!” the skinny man called Eviss grinned devilishly. Although his voice was definitely happy, everything about him just seemed snide and insincere.

    I didn’t like him very much.

    “O’t of the stocks ahlraidy?” Selhallen didn’t sound very surprised at all. He also didn’t sound very dwarfy. “Haw’d ya pull that uff?”

    “My new friends here were nice enough to let me out,” Kurgan grinned. “Now we’re gonna do the same for you,” He turned to Cass and gave a big smile. She groaned exasperatedly.

    “You always leave me to do all the bloody work,” she mumbled as she pulled out her thieves’ tools. That was actually pretty true though. I mean, she did let Kurgan out of his stocks, and she did get the guard to let us in. He had been really rude and unhelpful, and then the next thing I knew, she had cast a charm spell on him, and then he was as helpful as can be! She was really amazing!

    But still, it was a little strange, because out of nowhere, I had forgotten the exact same spell right before she had cast it! Oh well. It was probably just me being stupid and forgetful again. Good thing Gramma wasn’t here.

    I was getting lost in my head when some alarms suddenly went off. Cass looked really pale.

    “Oh bugger…”
    Last edited by Machuchang; 2011-01-17 at 08:03 PM.

  30. - Top - End - #330
    Ogre in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: D&D Snippets

    fraid I haven't had time to catch up on reading

    however
    I bring a new snippet


    from savage worlds - Necessary Evil
    I bring you
    "Blacklist's first jailbreak" or, now that we're finally done with character creation, lets drop into some combat!

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    Blackness…

    The sensation of flying…

    And suddenly
    LIGHT!!!


    I’m falling down through the air, hurtling towards the ground; below me I see a prison compound

    More importantly, I see the roof a building racing up to meet me.

    ….. Perhaps I should introduce myself…..

    I am the vigilante Known as Blacklist. As a youth a friend and I were shot up in a Convenience store robbery, I had the fortune of waking up inside body gab en route to the morgue. It was discovered that I have a genetic mutation that causes me to heal at a vastly accelerated rate, even beyond death. Incensed over the death of my friend (and my own death, temporary as it was) I vowed to have revenge for any who have been taken advantage of by those that escape “the law” I will go to any lengths necessary to achieve this goal. However, I will do whatever I can to minimize “innocent” human casualties (after all, that’s what I was) in the years since, I have discovered that my mutation allows me to… reverse the healing process in others, causing them to decay and rot.
    It’s currently tied with a manslayer shell to the face for my favorite method of ‘blacklisting’ someone

    But I digress
    When the aliens came, the warehouse I was holed up in was hit hard, I only managed to escape with my life (pretty hard to lose it given my condition) my favorite pump-action shotgun, and a handful of ‘surprises’ for our guests…

    Now
    Back to the present….

    I’m falling…
    Quickly I might add

    “Fine, I’ll do it” I mentally respond to the presence in my head.

    The plastique explosive attached to the nullifiers around my wrists explode, leaving me free, I reach out and grab my shotgun from freefall and feel it over for flaws or damage.

    6 seconds to impact
    I see a robot has been dropped with me; lucky bastard seems to have rockets built into his boots.

    5 seconds to impact
    I look around the prison complex, I see that we’re dropping into the main holding cell

    4 seconds to impact
    No sharks… and no blues… that’s good.

    3 seconds to impact
    “Time to rock n’ roll” I think to myself

    2 seconds to impact
    I rack the slide on my shotgun, chambering a deer slug

    CRASH!

    I come down straight through the ceiling, leaving a rather large hole in the middle of the roof for the robot to follow me through, I manage to stick the landing and roll to my feet assessing the situation.

    The robot comes to a landing behind me

    “Blacklist, you?” I say as way of introduction, not taking my eyes off of my surroundings

    “Mandlebot, now, let us deal with these… things”

    The ‘things’ Tin Man is referring to are the 4 drone guards that surround us. We’ve landed in the exact center of a cross intersection in the prison building, at the end of each hall is a drone guard leveling their blaster rifle at us.

    “Right, I’ll take the fat one and the thin one; you take the ugly one and the pretty one”
    I roll down one of the corridors, halving the amount of incoming fire. Rolling to my feet I raise my shot-gun and send the deer slug into the chest of the drone. It staggers back and returns fire, which is absorbed into my duraweave suit. I rack the slide and fire again bringing the drone down.

    I hear shrieking metal behind me and turn to see that doc sprocket’s got his hands on one of those fancy ‘hero killer’ guns…. Show off… he’s obliterated two of them.

    “Handle the others! I’ll track down Mindjack”

    I open the eye slot on the door nearest me
    Civilian
    Human female
    Innocent
    ….
    Crap

    I pump shells into the door until it opens

    “Are you okay?” I ask

    “Yea, I’ll be fine” she responds

    And so the process continues, until I’ve freed all the prisoners.

    Mandlebot was holding off an enforcer squad of drones with some sort of shockwave emitter, seemed pretty effective.


    I pulled Mindjack, the guy we were sent to bust out, too his feet and call for extraction….



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