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  1. - Top - End - #211
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    The toy man looked almost shocked at the request, straightening up. And then he started laughing again, that choked, wheezing cackle. "I've genuinely never heard that one before!" he rasped, "I'm not going to stop you. I'm a customer here, just like you. Ha!"
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  2. - Top - End - #212
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Finding Isabelle’s hand, Jon grabbed on tight. He desperately needed food and rest, as well as some place that felt remotely normal. The only thing that seemed promising at the moment was that the toy solider wasn’t predicting doom and gloom for any of them...yet. Jon silently prayed that they could get their food and find a quiet place to eat without further interruption, but with the way today had been shaping up, who could say?
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  3. - Top - End - #213
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Charlene calmed down a little. The situation seemed less threatening than immediately upon their entry. She still watched tensely and backed away a little further. She would be quite happy to grab her food and get out of there quickly.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Colonel Fedora View Post
    Deadly, a delightfully daring drawer and drafter of dissertations. Defying the dictations of our disparate denizens, Deadly decides his direction with a dirth of dependence on the decisions of despotic desperados. Deadly detests dismissive derision, and will debate any dude or dame that dares to detest discussion.

  4. - Top - End - #214
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "Thank you." She replied to the creature. A customer? She could guess what kind of sustinance he was seeking. It permeated the air, thicker than the soup but sharper than knives.

    She tried to breath it in as she had done before, but hunger and exhaustion clouded her mind. Dragging Jon along, she approached the counter instead to claim their food. They needed that more than anything else at the moment.

    She handed Charlene her bowl, before leading them back out of the kitchen. Once the miasma of fear faded, she sat down on a small ledge to eat her meal.

    Harvest Roll:
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    Roll(5d10):
    3,3,5,4,6
    No successes

  5. - Top - End - #215
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "And it's Hans. Any time you need a meal down these parts, ask for Hans," cackled the mannequin as they left. He didn't obstruct them as they left, and before long they were out into the cold, grey, overcast spring afternoon, food in hand.
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  6. - Top - End - #216
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    Isabelle sat down and was about to start on her food when something small shot past her head. She flinched automatically, nearly dropping her soup, before realising that it had just been a small jaybird.

    She smiled as it alighted on the footpath and began pecking at crumbs too small for her to see. She'd always been fond of birds as a girl, had romanticised them thanks to too many hours watching movies coupled with a strong imagination. Heralds of the Dawn, Autumn's prey and the vanguard of Spring ...

    Spring ....

    She looked back at her soup, the tingle of an idea forming. Were fatigue and recent event the reason hadn't she thought of it earlier?

    "Guys?" She said. "Before you start eating ... I think I can do something for us that would be better than this soup. If you want, I can give it a try?"

  7. - Top - End - #217
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Charlene backed out the the soup kitchen with her food kept close. She calmed down as the blanket of fear swept away again and left behind only the cool air. Her countenance took on a more natural look as she sat down and offered a quick, silent prayer over the bowl of hot soup. She was well towards devouring it, manners possibly having suffered slightly after years of living with a bunch of foxes as her only company, when Isabelle interrupted the thought. Charlene looked longingly at the soup, like a dog told to not touch a treat on the floor, "what do you have in mind?" she hesitatingly asked. That soup sure smelled good to her.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Colonel Fedora View Post
    Deadly, a delightfully daring drawer and drafter of dissertations. Defying the dictations of our disparate denizens, Deadly decides his direction with a dirth of dependence on the decisions of despotic desperados. Deadly detests dismissive derision, and will debate any dude or dame that dares to detest discussion.

  8. - Top - End - #218
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "There's a ... contract ... I know. It can help with lack of sleep as well as our hunger. But it needs, well it works best with some kind of offering." She held up her bowl of food. "But it needs to be genuine ... like giving up our meals here ... I can't really say more without defeating the purpose. I'll understand if you'd rather just eat the soup, but if you trust me with it instead, I'm sure I can do this."

  9. - Top - End - #219
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Jon looked forlornly into his bowl of soup. He wanted to trust Isabelle, but the food smelled so good it was a slight miracle he hadn’t given in and started eating already. With the way things were going, it seemed as though this day had been ordained to dangle the things he wanted most right in front of him before snatching them away...

    Still, Isabelle and Charlene had been there for him when no one else was. Now that his family situation was...complicated, they were the only people in the city he felt he could rely on for any amount of time. Moreover, he had invoked a Contract of his own just a few hours ago, and knew firsthand how powerful they could be in the mortal world; maybe Isabelle’s idea really would be better than food.

    Jon desperately wanted the soup, but trust had to start somewhere; to forsake all society would be to give in to the Beast, and he couldn’t face that life again. With a groan that was just a little more audible than he liked, Jon set the bowl down and turned to Isabelle. “Ok, what do we need to do? After all, there’s always more soup, right?”
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  10. - Top - End - #220
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Charlene looked longingly at her soup. Eat the tasty soup now, or give it up to... maybe get something better? On one hand, this was way better than anything she'd had in a long, long time. On the other, why stop there? With the pressure of Jon agreeing on the plan she grudgingly put her soup down too.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Colonel Fedora View Post
    Deadly, a delightfully daring drawer and drafter of dissertations. Defying the dictations of our disparate denizens, Deadly decides his direction with a dirth of dependence on the decisions of despotic desperados. Deadly detests dismissive derision, and will debate any dude or dame that dares to detest discussion.

  11. - Top - End - #221
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "True, though in this case the offering is less about simply giving these people soup, and more about saving them from what they will have to go through to get it." She replied to Jon, glancing in the direction of the kitchen and that marionette of fear. “Just follow my lead.”

    The promise of free food was a beacon to more than just the three changelings, and several other homeless were nearby. Many still lying on the pavement in their worn sleeping bags, or under newspapers despite the late afternoon hour. With the choice between facing that room of terror or expending energy searching for food elsewhere, lethargy seemed to be the order of the day.

    She took her bowl and knelt by one of them; a long-limbed, white haired man whose entire face seemed to sag down to the footpath on which he lay. He glanced up at her with bloodshot eyes that flicked first towards the bowl of soup in her hands, and then towards the doors of the kitchen behind her.

    “Whet arh yew doin?” He said, his words slow and slurred.

    “Here” She said, passing the bowl into his long thin fingers. “In Spring’s name and on Spring’s behalf I give this to you freely. Take it in the knowledge that, for today, you need not fear the things that scare you. That today, you are free. Enjoy that freedom, cherish it and, above all, make use of it. For today is a New Spring, and the world is at your feet.”

    The man stared at her for a moment, then blinked.

    “Yer crazy lahdy" He said, as he shifted upright. "… buht thans”

    Isabelle smiled as he began to eat, standing up and walking back to her friends with the subtle indication that they should repeat the process with some of the other homeless nearby. She waited until they were done and had returned to her before starting the next step in invoking the contract. In truth, the whole ‘ritual’ could have been done with just a gesture, but Spring might then decide to turn a blind ear to her prayer. She hoped it was listening now.

    Taking Jon and Charlene’s hands in her own, she began to chant in soft, revernt tones.

    “First light. First Seed. Provider of hope to those in need.
    In morning’s light and by the fragrant bloom, hear our prayers and grant this boon.
    Three children stand before your hearth, offerings given to prove our worth.
    A contract written, now called upon.
    Spring’s warm renewal, bring forth our dawn."


    OOC:

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    Okay Thanq, tell me what I need to do here XD

    Do I need to do one or three invocations of this contract? (For three rolls, WP spend and Glamour spend?)

    Rolling Resolve(3) + Survival(0) + Spring(Mantle)(0): For three dice before penalties/bonuses. Will spend willpower too for another three dice. Not sure if I get it back due to the act of charity as this all counts as one "action" or if I don't because the act of charity came before the invocation.

  12. - Top - End - #222
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    [Your actions get you a +3 bonus to the activation roll. Fun fact, but the only real way to have gotten a higher bonus than that would have been to give the food to the birds while singing the song from Mary Poppins.

    Three rolls, three points of glamour spent. Each roll is at +3 for the charity, -2 for the fatigue, so your dice pool is 4 before willpower. One success removes all fatigue penalties.

    As to the WP refresh, you will get it if and only if all three dice rolls succeed. If all three rolls succeed, you'll regain all missing willpower.]
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  13. - Top - End - #223
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Spring, it seemed, had heard after all. A small zephyr swirled around the three changelings as their hunger and fatigue ebbed away. Warmth resonated amongst them, beginning at where they held each other's hands and spreading throughout their bodies. It banished deprivation, leaving only contentedness in its wake.

    As if this were not enough, Isabelle jolted as she felt something through the contract that she had never expected. Spring itself seemed to turn its gaze on her and in that instant she felt herself strenthened by the power of the season.

    The moment passed, the spell faded, and Isabelle found herself panting slightly from the rush of energy. She looked between her two friends to see if they'd felt what she had.

    OOC:
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    Heh, I knew I should've had Isabelle sing that last chant, maybe skip around too XD If only Pinkie Pie were here, she'd have those +5 bonuses in the bag.

    Anyway, rolltime. Burnt willpower for all three, would've done that regardless really and it turned out better than I'd hoped in the end!

    Roll 1 - Isabelle

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    Roll(7d10)+0:
    9,10,10,3,6,10,6,+0
    Total:54

    Roll(3d10)+0:
    9,10,10,+0
    Total:29

    Roll(2d10)+0:
    7,9,+0
    Total:16

    Holy Bajoly ... 8 successes

    Roll 2 - Jon

    2 extra dice due to fatigue penalty no longer applying.

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    Roll(9d10)+0:
    1,5,2,3,3,3,8,4,6,+0
    Total:35

    1 Success

    Roll 3 - Charlene

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    Roll(9d10)+0:
    7,10,2,9,6,1,6,8,6,+0
    Total:55

    Roll(1d10)+0:
    3,+0
    Total:3

    3 successes

    3 Glamour spent, 3 willpower spent but earned back (thank goodness). If I read the contract right (and unless Thanq wants to GM-mod anything) it looks like everyone feels as well rested and fed as a full night's sleep and a good breakfast, while Isabelle gets +1 stamina for the rest of the scene.

    I think I'm going to go have a lie down after that ...

  14. - Top - End - #224
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    As Jon approached the small crowd of homeless, he began to realize something about Isabelle. She was the first to give away her own food, in the hope of being able to give even more to their ragged little group. She had tried to make sure that the bones from the truck had a bit of the peaceful rest they deserved, and throughout their journey back, she’d acted almost like an older sister, watching out for the other two and encouraging them when their instincts would have made them run or cower on their own. It dawned on him as the considered Isabelle’s actions that this was the shape of compassion.

    It was something he had seen before, in his own family, but he had never really grasped how important caring for others was. Now that he was lost in his own hometown after a nightmare, he knew he needed as much care as he could get, and his friends needed it too. When you got down to it, so did everyone out by the soup kitchen: waiting nervously, terrified to go in but desperate for food.

    It was clear to Jon then: if he was going to return to the mortal world, he needed to be better, and he was going to have to start right now.

    Resolved, Jon held out his soup to one of the people standing in a little knot by the door. She looked to be middle-aged, but the dirt ground into the lines of her face and the shapeless clothing she wore made her seem much older. As he offered the soup, he spoke in imitation of Isabelle, “In Spring’s name, I give you this freely. Take it and eat, free from fear. At Spring’s command, the world is renewed, made better, and you too may be a part of it.” The woman looked at him suspiciously for a moment from under dirty eyebrows, before taking the soup in one quick motion and beginning to eat.

    “Thank you...”

    Jon nodded to her, and stepped back, joining hands with Isabelle and Charlene. The words of the invocation sent a little thrill through his heart as they began, and that thrill grew into a soothing warmth. For a fraction of a second, he could see the world, reborn through Spring’s eyes, and his longing for it was so sharp his chest ached, with and ache he wouldn’t trade for all the soup in the world.
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  15. - Top - End - #225
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Charlene followed the others' lead and got up. She looked around at one poor head after another, all deserving of a rare show of kindness. Finally, because there wasn't much else to do, she walked up to one and offered the soup as Isabelle and Jon had done. The man grabbed the soup out of her hands, having noticed the deal already. Charlene just stood with her arms stretched out and stared at him with lost eyes until, after a moment of this, he scuttled off uncomfortably to eat the spoils. Would she have acted any different were their roles swapped?

    Charlene looked around again, then returned to the others. Something felt off. As Isabelle began chanting and as her hunger and exhaustion was blown away in the soft zephyr of spring, the feeling of wrongness only grew. What was she doing? Using the magic of... of Them, to... to what? She looked around again, at faces that might have been hers. There was the man who she had given her soup, there was another who still had nothing. And who had gained the most? The soup was good and warm, but it wasn't much. Yet Charlene felt like she'd just had a good, solid dinner and a rest in an actual bed.

    Giving the soup felt good, but would she have given it up without the promise of something else? Something more? And where had that something come from? She looked down at her empty hands. Not from her own hard work, not from the kindness of her fellow men and women, not even from God she wagered.

    If she had been cursed to wear the skin of a demon and hold the power of those... things, she couldn't use it for her own gain if she wanted God to look past the skin and forgive her soul, if she had any left to forgive.

    "I wish I could have eaten my soup and given them all... this, instead." She said, staring down at her hands. "Many still hunger."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Colonel Fedora View Post
    Deadly, a delightfully daring drawer and drafter of dissertations. Defying the dictations of our disparate denizens, Deadly decides his direction with a dirth of dependence on the decisions of despotic desperados. Deadly detests dismissive derision, and will debate any dude or dame that dares to detest discussion.

  16. - Top - End - #226
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "You're right." Isabelle nodded, the feeling of contentment dissolving as she heard Charlene's words. "I wouldn't have the strength, or rather the glamour, to call on the contract so many times though ..."

    She trailed off, an idea beginning to form in her head. It might be foolhardy, but with Spring's energy still coursing through her, she felt as if she could do anything.

    "I think I know what I can do about that." she finished, already beginning to walk back towards the kitchen.

  17. - Top - End - #227
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Hans was sitting on the table, eating noisily in a room otherwise filled with utmost silence. As Isabelle walked in he grinned, tossed the half-finished bowl over his shoulder, and got up to greet her. "Back already?" he rasped.
    To improve is to change
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "Back already." Isabelle replied, striding down the aisle. "You got a minute to spare? I want to talk to you about something." She asked, indicating the seat in front of him.

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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    It was hard to say that he smiled, given that his face was painted into a perpetual, wooden, unmoving smile. He gave that impression, though, as he sat down and relaxed. "You know, when you came storming back in here, I thought you were going to go all Chosen One on my ass. You wouldn't be the first kid to come out of the Hedge with a sword of tinfoil and delusions of heroism. That kind don't tend to last. So yeah, I got a minute."
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    Isabelle smiled. In all fairness the thought had occured to her, but she was content to try more civil means of discussion, for now at least.

    "You get that happen to you often then? People attacking you for what you're doing here?" She'd originally intended on taking a different tack, but his comments gave her an opening and she wanted to see where it led.

  21. - Top - End - #231
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "Happened to me one time. Happened to some of my valued colleagues too." That line had a bit more sarcasm than was necessary, "Kids think that if they go out and slay the bad man who's preying on the poor then everything will be magically better and they can ride off into the sunset. Lady, I live with these people. I'm all they got. Unless you want to elect yourself hobo queen and show these poor bastards a better way of life with candy and gumdrops and do that full time for the rest of your life, step down."

    Hans' speech here was curiously direct and oddly well enunciated, differing from the scratching rasp of before. Like watching an actor break character and speak to the audience directly.
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Isabelle blinked as she slid into the seat opposite Hans. The change in voice and mannerisms caught her off guard and she took a moment for her brain to rebalance itself. When it had, she continued in a slightly more serious tone than before.

    "Step down? You seem to think I'm going to attack you, I'm not. Not when you're willing to talk things over at least. I'd figured you were just here to harvest glamour, thought I should try to convince you to go somewhere else. Are you saying you're trying to look after these people by scaring them so much?"

  23. - Top - End - #233
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "Naw, nothing so altruistic," Hans said, grinning. "These folks, they my stash. Put a lot of time into getting to know 'em and what scares 'em. Getting the fear flowing just right, building a name. I'm here to harvest glamour, but I'm here to do it long term. I keep 'em safe, safe from everything except me.

    "And that glamour turns wheels that you don't even know exist, kid. City's gotta eat and sometimes it's best not to look to close at what goes on in the farms, right?"
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "Keep them safe? From what though?" Isabelle shook her head.

    "Look, if harvesting glamour is all it's about there's got to be a better way than this. I mean have you looked around? You've got what, maybe twenty people here?" She jerked a thumb over her shoulder. "There has to be more than one soup kitchen in this city, and the only ones you're getting here are the ones too shiftless to find another. Maybe there's something that keeps them coming back, maybe you're keeping them safe from something, I don't know, but I'm just not seeing it ..."

    "Is there something that ties you here beyond just having a small supply on hand? Because I can think of a way you could get a much larger supply guaranteed."

  25. - Top - End - #235
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "From what? Kid, you really are new at this. Vampires. Werewolves. Ghosts. Goddamn wizards. It's like bad Harry Potter fanfiction out there," chuckled Hans, "As to more efficient ways to harvest glamour, I don't actually care. If I need a big hit then I can go out and start terrorising the town, get into the papers, whip everyone up into a big ol' panic. For what I'm using today I just need to scare a few dozen, and these are the folk who are easiest to scare. It's the least effort on my part."

    He lit a cigarette and took a deep breath. "All the courts have a harvest guy. Someone like me. Lets 'em keep their hands clean, the posers."
    To improve is to change
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Jon frowned at Charlene’s words. It was true, there were many hungry faces left, and some of them still glanced in the direction of the Changelings occasionally, trying to see if any more food would appear. Although the people waiting outside were too afraid to go and ask for their own share, Jon remembered that the toy soldier inside had seemed welcoming to his own kind. As long as the strange man didn’t cause any trouble, he could probably explain things to the cook and get a pot of soup to take outside.

    Looking over to Charlene, Jon spoke, “You’re right, but I think there’s more we can do. I’m going to try to explain things to the workers and see if we can’t help these people a little bit more. Do you want to come along?”
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheDarkDM
    That game does seem to have an unusual number of Bronies per square meter.
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    Awesome paradoxical avatar by Aruius! When the robot uprising is complete, he alone shall be spared.

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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Charlene looked as Isabelle walked back into the kitchen, a little too slow to stop her and ask what she had in mind. Instead she turned to Jon and nodded. "My thought too, I feel guilty for giving to one and ignore the rest." She said and stood up. She remembered her time in the less than opulent neighborhoods of Portland, getting to know the people and the issues at work there, the many connections, spokes and wheels turning behind the surface. Solving things took time and hard work in getting behind the facade and establishing yourself. She had learned that in the police too, often rushing in only made things worse. "No solution to these problems are ever easy or quick, but for now we can give them soup for a day without fear. And maybe learn some things, earn some goodwill." It was all about connections, and knowledge.

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  28. - Top - End - #238
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    Unfortunately, the aid staff were extremely reluctant to give John or Charlene a pot of soup to take out onto the street. There were a few reasons for this - one, they had the quite reasonable assumption that the Changelings were going to go out and sell it for drugs or hoard it for themselves. Two, they were as terrified of Hans as any of the customers and did not want to go behind his back like this. They did recommend some other places they could volunteer, which were coincidentally as far from this place as possible.

    [There's a social roll of some kind here, disproportionately high penalty barring some persuasive arguments or Hans' approval]
    Last edited by Thanqol; 2012-03-18 at 06:52 AM.
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    The response of the kitchen workers took Jon by surprise. He hadn’t expected everyone there to be frightened of the man: the staff was supposed to be there for the purpose of feeding these people, after all. Of course, most of them were probably volunteers, and didn’t have any reason to put up with being terrorized, but it was still frustrating.

    Ordinarily, Jon would have given up after his conversation with the cook, but a part of him now wanted to see how far the momentum of his resolution to help the homeless waiting outside would take him. Turning from the nervous-looking employees, Jon approached the table where Isabelle and the toy soldier were sitting; he might as well get answers straight from the source.
    Last edited by the_druid_droid; 2012-03-19 at 12:16 AM.
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    Default Re: Waiting For Rain IC: Spring Slowly Comes

    "Ah, they're all trickling back in. Get a chair! Not that often I get to indoctrinate the new generation," Hans said as Jon came to sit down.
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