The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #271
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    Default Re: The Fire and The Black: Daemonfold [IC]

    After a moment of thought, Tsōlg frowns. "Clarification. I'm from Belkzen, Professor. I've never heard of these 'Sun-Kissed'." he says, moving closer to the map and pursing his lips irritably.

  2. - Top - End - #272
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    Professor Wella gives Solys a brief glance, but turns to Tsōlg as he speaks. "Jerrick? I remember him. No elegance in his craft even when he improved," she says, appearing ready to continue before the hobgoblin adds to his former words. "Ah," she nods. "I can understand it being unusual. As someone who has spent some time charting the development of Belkzen territorial distributions, I must admit it is odd - this tribal group expanded very quickly," she says. "Given the age, I've estimated perhaps eight months, in which time they have apparently subsumed the entirety of several powerful tribes."

    For a moment, the professor pauses. "It is not impossible, of course. But it would be quite unusual for anything bearing a Zaebol 15 mark to come this far south in such a period, given the limited trade and movement through the region. One could reach it in...perhaps a month. No," she shakes her head. "In terms of distance, four weeks of constant travel. However, terrain would make the journey take longer. As for Jerrick - no. Even after his improvement, he lacked in the requisite power and technical understanding to utilize proper long-range teleportation magic. If he intended to go find this tribe, he would have done so on foot, perhaps taking a ship out of Korvosa."

    "What is it you found bearing the symbol?" Professor Wella asks after another quiet moment.
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  3. - Top - End - #273
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    Rakinen answered the professor's question with a gesture at Tsolg and Solys; his attention had turned to the map, with his eyes (and occasionally fingers, though he took care to not actually touch anything) tracing every feature of the area and trying to commit it to memory. He murmured idly to himself "Why would you need a ship when it's in the middle of mountains?"
    Last edited by Stelio Kontos; 2017-10-12 at 04:26 PM.
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  4. - Top - End - #274
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    Tsōlg ponders the professor's words for a few moments, tapping his chin thoughtfully. "We found it on a bottle, containing some magical oil."
    he replies, shortly, glancing over to Solys to gauge her reaction

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    "What, um," Solys clears her throat and looks to the ceiling. "Who, ah, denied you the...the funding for visiting the Sunkissed?" Tsolg lying is starting to become normal.

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    "Not the entire way. But sea travel is faster than land, so using it to go north for some segment is useful," Professor Wella says to Rakinen, before turning to Tsōlg, nodding. "Magical oil...That seems an unusual export," she says. "Based on your questions, I assume you've been considering the possibility that Jerrick fled the Academae to go to where he got this?" She asks.

    In response to Solys' question, Professor Wella turns, looking at her for a moment before smiling. "The Academae. Or, rather, Headmaster Ornelos," she says.
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  7. - Top - End - #277
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    "Fled... or was taken against his will by someone who left this by mistake. Either way, we can't very well get him back unless we know where he's gone to, can we?" said Rakinen, his eyes still seemingly fixed on the map. "Would he have had reason to flee that you can think of? Problems with his studies, perhaps? Any issues with breaking your rules?"
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  8. - Top - End - #278
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    "Have you just begun the investigation, or have you already gathered information from the general populace?" Professor Walla asks. "A report of Jerrick walking alone through the streets or similar could make it clear which hypothesis is correct," she says. "As for reasons to leave - not that I know of. He was performing poorly in class for most of his time here, but improved markedly, which should have removed any fear caused by a lack of results."
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  9. - Top - End - #279
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    Solys silently thinks that asking if somebody has seen somebody in a city as big as Ustalav is unlikely to get many results. "Do, um. Does the Academy have any safeguards against...conjuration or divination or other things, from outside?"

  10. - Top - End - #280
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    "The campus is warded against divination, but not summoning," Professor Walla replies. "I believe I remember being requested to avoid excessive casting of abjuration magic while in the Hall of Summoning; I imagine these are for the same reason."
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  11. - Top - End - #281
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    Tsōlg frowns, then snaps his fingers. "Abjuration is discouraged in the Hall of Summoning?" he says, head tilting. "Two things. One, isn't Abjuration essential when Summoning? For circles and anchors and the like? Secondly, Jerrick seemed to have picked up an interest in Abjuration that others have commented on as being unusual."

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    Solys frowns as Tsolg brings up Abjuration's role in summoning, and the lack of it would explain the flocks of Imps running around Korvosa. "Uh, just out of curiosity, you don't need to answer now, um, probably don't, but what's the easiest way to kill Imps?" She asks the Conjuration tutor.

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    "The summoning circles present in classrooms make the typical protections unnecessary," Professor Walla says with a nod. "But, I will note that the 'excessive' was stressed - I believe it was more in regards to unnecessary casting of abjuration spells being discouraged. As for the latter..." she glances over to the metal box into which the imp went earlier. "A sudden interest in abjuration could be a sign of worry. Looking for means to protect oneself against some known or unknown threat."

    As Solys speaks, the half-elven woman looks over to her. "To kill? Silvered or blessed weapons, lightning or sound-based magic are ideal."
    Last edited by PersonMan; 2017-10-13 at 05:18 PM.
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  14. - Top - End - #284
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    "Oh." Solys frowns. Nothing affordable, then.

  15. - Top - End - #285
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    "Oh, I'm sure Rakinen can bless something for you, Solys." Tsōlg adds with a brief grin. He frowns again soon, and turns to the professor. "That.. makes a lot of sense. And given his interests, putting all of this together wildly, could this 'Sun-Kissed' tribe theoretically have outsider help?"

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    "We've only just begun our investigation, professor. But Jerrick has been missing for over a month now. It seems very unlikely that we would find someone who found him that wasn't revealed by your school's investigation. Surely that's something they would have checked into, is it not? I would have thought that a student going missing under strange circumstances would be the sort of thing that would be a high priority for you all, but it doesn't seem like that's been the case."

    Rakinen caught himself, as if he had been about to say something even more untoward. "Actually, now that I think of it... who would be the best person here to speak to about what is already known? By your account, he has been gone a month, and appears to have gone someplace that's another full month away, and we know nothing of how best to get there, how they may have traveled, who may be involved, or what we may find when we get there. I... do not see any area where we have an advantage."

    At Tsolg's remark, Rakinen choked a bit and hung his head. "I don't think ... I have not asked for such a thing before, and He has not seen fit to grant me such power. I cannot promise."
    Last edited by Stelio Kontos; 2017-10-13 at 09:39 PM.
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  17. - Top - End - #287
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    "It's possible. It would be unusual, for a tribal shaman to have the ability, but not impossible. The leadership of a powerful spell caster could explain their rapid expansion," Professor Walla says, before turning to Rakinen.

    "I was not informed of the specifics," Professor Walla begins. "But I do not recall any sort of large-scale investigation into the issue. I would not assume that everything relevant has already been found, especially given the Headmaster's...shall we say, love of centralization. For the same reason, he is the only one with access to the investigation's findings. As for where Jerrick could be; I would warn against attaching yourself to any one hypothesis too early. Yes, it is possible that he left the Academae and Korvosa swiftly, then took the most efficient route to a place very far away. However, this would require foresight, planning, funds, and so on, which he is not guaranteed to have had. Especially if he fled the Academae to escape some imminent peril. If he were abducted, he may have simply been hidden away somewhere within Korvosa, or perhaps was able to slow his attacker or escape."
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  18. - Top - End - #288
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    "I do not believe that" Rakinen said emphatically, shaking his head from side to side as he spoke. "If he was afraid of something here, he has a wealthy family a ten minute walk from here with ample funds and contacts to protect him and send him away to anywhere in the world if necessary. They haven't heard from him once. That's why we're here. If he were afraid of THEM, he could have just stayed here, you all have done an effective job of stonewalling the family up until this point. If he were somewhere in town, his family's been looking for him for weeks, again, ample funds and contacts, willing to pay people frankly ridiculous sums of money to get his safe return. But nothing. And people who abduct people do it because they want something, and nobody's been told after a month of any demands, because if they had they would have paid it by now and it would all be over. I don't believe it. Either they've taken him far far away or he desperately doesn't want to be found by anyone -- and if that's the case I very much doubt he'd stay so close to the source of whatever's troubling him. Tell me where I'm wrong? Or better yet, just tell us where the headmaster's office is. It sounds like we need to go, now, and talk directly to him, if he's keeping things to himself."
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  19. - Top - End - #289
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    "It will not be possible for you to speak to the Headmaster. He fills his time with work brought on by his desire to make all decisions in the Academae, and the waiting list for even a brief meeting with him was over a month long when I last saw it," Professor Walla says. "As for your theories...If Jerrick's family has thoroughly searched the city for him and found nothing, then it does make it far more likely that he has fled elsewhere - however, I would not discount the possibility that he feared not only for himself, but anyone he may be with," she continues. "If Jerrick fled the Academae and did not contact his family, he may have done so out of a desire to protect them from whatever was occurring. I must admit, the idea only comes to me due to its presence in fiction I read recently, but it would explain his silence towards them."
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  20. - Top - End - #290
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    "Well, we'll have to go see about that. Maybe his schedule will free up for a few minutes."

    "I have but one more question: if we believe we're right, and Jerrick is ... there" (as Rakinen pointed at the map before the group) "what would you suggest as the quickest possible way to arrive there? Pretend someone's life depended on it."
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  21. - Top - End - #291
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    Tsōlg nods his head as Rakinen speaks. "That's a very logical point. He's unlikely to be in the city given what we know..." the Hobgoblin purses his lips, and taps his chin thoughtfully. Then he grins. "Professor, how soon can you be packed? Salvin Overni is a wealthy man. If it helped us find his son, perhaps he'd be willing to invest and fund your expedition. And then we can all Teleport to Belkzen together. Wouldn't that be nice?"

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    Professor Walla smiles a moment after Tsōlg speaks, actually chuckling briefly. "Sadly, I am not an unaffiliated young wizard any more. Leaving the Academae to go on a sudden trip elsewhere would be...a poor choice," she says, then turns to Rakinen. "Personally, I would teleport. Could I not..." she turns back to the marble-map, and closes her eyes for a moment before snapping her fingers. The image shifts rapidly, and with a few practiced flicks of her wrist the professor seems to call a trail of red marks across the area, because pausing. After a moment's silence, she nods at the map, and place markers appear, followed by names.

    "This is the route I would advise. From Kaer Maga, you can take the most common one towards Belkzen," she says. "River travel to Harse is faster, but will take more time in the long run, as you will need to go west to ford the Runtash at the same location."
    Last edited by PersonMan; 2017-10-14 at 04:07 PM.
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  23. - Top - End - #293
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    "Were..." Solys looks to Rakinen and Tsolg. "We weren't being paid to go anywhere that isn't the Academy, are we?"

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    Rakinen stifled a laugh, but he couldn't help rolling his eyes. "You're kidding, right? You thought we were being paid a thousand and a half gold coins to walk ten minutes over here, take in a few sights, knock on Jerrick's room door, ask him nicely to follow us home, collect your sack of money, and be home in time for dinner?"

    He waited a few moments for the sign that a chuckle was being had at the situation, but then realized that this was no joking matter. He turned serious, taking the few steps toward Solys and placing a hand on her shoulder, trying to soothe what he was sure would be some very upsetting news. "You really didn't understand, do you? It's much more than that. The money offered was for Jerrick's safe return home. No matter how long it takes, or how far we have to go, or how dangerous it is -- that was the deal. No Jerrick, no money. And his family figures, somehow, that we're their last best option for ever seeing him again, because they've tried all the easy things and they haven't worked. We fail, and you don't just not get the money, you get a grieving father and his daughter on your conscience for the rest of your life, if you have one.

    "So maybe now that you understand, maybe now you get why we need to work together on this, why this scares me? It IS going to take a long time, and we're probably GOING to have to travel halfway across the damn world, and by the sound of it we ARE probably going to run into a bunch of people who want nothing more than to stop us by any means -- he wouldn't have offered the sum he did if it was going to be easy, and he certainly didn't bring us on for our wit and grace, and he thought the job would require five of us and now there's three and we're all going to have to work that much harder. And look, if you can't handle it, nobody's going to hold it against you -- you just walk back over to Overni's right now, tell them 'here's the four hundred gold pieces advance you gave me, but I'm too scared to do it, sorry you'll never see your son again' and go back to doing whatever it is you do. Me? I can't look him in the eye and tell him that. But that's the deal. You're either all the way in on it, or you really should just quit like Cecil and Vesta. I didn't take you for a quitter though."


    He looked up at Professor Wella with a weak smile, suddenly aware that for the second time in a short while he'd involved another innocent bystander in the discussions. "I'm sorry to waste your time, but now you know what we're doing here, and just how big a mess we're in. If we don't get this exactly right, get every bit of help from anyone who cares whether he lives or dies, every last scrap of knowledge about where we're going and who might be involved, the kid's probably just dead."
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  25. - Top - End - #295
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    Solys listens through Rakinen's speech, then clears her throat. "Take your hand off my shoulder, please."

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    Rakinen did remove his hand immediately, though he lingered for juts a moment or two, a disconsolate look etched into his face. "Professor, thank you, you've been very helpful. Please excuse me, I think it's best if I go get some fresh air."

    He quietly gathered his belongings and left the room, and the building.
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  27. - Top - End - #297
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    "Cheerful bloke, isn't he?" Tsölg comments, smirking at Rakinen's retreating back. He turns to Solys "If its any consolation, I plan on getting more money from Lord Overni for this. Now, we should probably go. I don't think there's anything else in the Academae we can do, without kicking down the Headmasters door and likely get imprisoned 500 feet below the earth for our troubles."

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    Solys frowns for a moment, then nods. "I feel like we're missing something, but...yes. We should find somewhere quiet and private to go over what we know, shouldn't we?"

  29. - Top - End - #299
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    Tsolg nods. "Where was it you were staying? I'll go get Rakinen and meet you there"

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    "Uhh..." Solys scratches the back of her head. "Um, well, I'd say, but I kind of live there, and no offense but..." She coughs. "The Shoreline Drinkhall has private rooms. I can buy things, we can have a kind of, ehm, strategy room there."
    Last edited by Hazuki; 2017-10-16 at 04:19 PM.

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