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Thread: Flawless [IC]

  1. - Top - End - #181
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    Daud turns and does a double take. "Bethany?" he says, his tone clearly stunned. "What in the gods' names are you doing here? And yeah, of course I can talk, just lemme finish this and find a place to sit." He takes another bite of his food, seeming to genuinely enjoy the bizarre cocktail of flavors. The meatballs are less bizarre, but they do taste remarkably good.

    After a few more bites, Daud licks his fingers and goes to find a seat on one of the couches in the front room. "What on earth brings you to the Sanctuary? Really doesn't seem like your kind of place."
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  2. - Top - End - #182
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    Bethany will sit next to him with her own plate. Damn good meatballs.

    "Yeah, this isn't exactly my kind of place. But, then, I'm not here for the kind of thing most people are; I need information, and you keep your ear to the ground. I have it on excellent authority that there's a cult of psychophages operating in town, and I need to find them before they become an even bigger problem than they usually are. Already dealt with a wendigo, but a spirit told me that..." Bethany grimaces, "... that a particular succubus I've encountered in the past is operating as well. Places of a darker nature, sinister or not, tend to attract that sort of being, so I came here to ask the regulars if they've found anything out of the ordinary recently."
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  3. - Top - End - #183
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    "Out of the usual," Daud muses. "Man, Callum, that's a hard one. There's so much weird here, it takes a lot to stand out. Let me think." He goes silent for about a minute, clearly thinking hard. In the end, though, he nods. "Yeah, there was one or two things, even for this place, they were not right, not okay. First up was a vampire, seemed like a pretty old one, maybe a master. He brought his own food, which is a bit unusual, and she was...messed up. Inside, I mean. Thousand yard stare, didn't speak unless spoken to and barely then, like she wasn't all there. He drained her almost dry, way harder than most of them would normally go for. Slave damn near threw him out. That was about eight, nine days ago. The other, man, she was twisted. Dunno what she was exactly, something odd, not one of the big ones. But she was like...she found this guy here, the kind that comes here to be food. That's okay by me, you know, people do what they want, not my problem. But she took this guy and just...well, she screwed him senseless, and then she made him beg her to bite his finger off, and then she did it. Swallowed it whole. He was smiling the whole time, erection like he was getting head or something. Ended up leaving with her. That was five days ago, and I haven't seen him since."
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  4. - Top - End - #184
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    "Do you think Slave would provide me information if I asked about this?" Bethany asks, "If predators are using what should be a safe space to kill people, and I can't imagine the owner will approve of that," And this definitely sounds like the kind of thing that needs to be brought forward.
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  5. - Top - End - #185
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    "Sure, she should know, yeah," Daud says. "But like. Can you prove they're killing people who didn't want to die? Because if not, they didn't do anything wrong, not by our standards, at least, you know? Nobody made those people let the monsters eat them up." He shrugs. "I know it sounds messed up. But that's how we look at it. People should be free to do anything. Even if that means getting swallowed up a piece at a time by something out of Hieronymous Bosch's wet nightmares."
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  6. - Top - End - #186
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    "In this case, it's less about what the people choose to spend their time doing, and more what the monsters are doing with that. I can tell you there's some pretty goddamn dark magic afoot, and a wendigo has already sacrificed a number of people, but it's unwise to speak about the details outside of a circle." That at least should impress upon him how significant this is.
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  7. - Top - End - #187
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    Daud's face tightens. "I see. Come on, then." He takes Bethany by the arm and all but drags her to the front of the building, where he walks up to the doorkeeper. "This one needs to see Slave," he says bluntly. The doorkeeper takes one look at his face, and then nods and hurries off through a back door.

    He returns a moment later leading a striking woman. She is tall, nearly as tall as Bethany, and completely hairless. Her dark eyes are hard, her expression set. She wears a long black dress that accentuates an hourglass figure and has on several pieces of jewelry in silver, red, and black. She sweeps up and looks at Bethany. "You're new here," she says, her voice soft but deadly serious. "What is it?"
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  8. - Top - End - #188
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    "Do you mind if I put up a circle around us while we talk?" Bethany says, "Because there's things I need to say that we don't want getting out."
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  9. - Top - End - #189
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    Slave nods tersely and says nothing.
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  10. - Top - End - #190
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    Bethany will draw the circle in chalk and seal it with a bit of will, "Alright. I spoke to a spirit in Thoth's employ; the Circle of the Sacred Feast is active in the city. They're a radical cult that worships Ammit. They're psychophages believe that they can empower a champion that would devour part of the world in Ammit's name, and I have reason to believe a couple of them have already come through Sanctuary and walked out with their chosen sacrifices to their god. Daud mentioned them - A succubus that ate a man's finger a few days ago, and before that a vampire that very nearly drained someone dry. I've seen what these twists do to the people they've taken away, even experienced it if the succubus is who I think it is, and I need to track them down before they complete whatever horror they're building up to."
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  11. - Top - End - #191
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    Slave's expression grows steadily more cold as Bethany speaks. When she finishes, the club owner is silent for a long, tense moment.

    Finally, she says, "They serve Ammit. That is...madness, plain and simple, even by my standards. I will not allow the worship of that being here. However. You have no proof that these individuals actually worship her. So, I will not offer you my full backing, not until you can prove that they actually did this in my club. I will give you the address of the one you called a succubus - I have it from when she checked in. If you can find substantive evidence that she is making sacrifices of my members to Ammit, then I will take direct action. Clear?"
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  12. - Top - End - #192
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    "I don't, you're right," Bethany nods in response. This sort of thing was to be expected, "Very clear, and thank you."
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  13. - Top - End - #193
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    Slave nods and scrawls an address on the western edge of the city on a piece of paper, then hands it to Bethany before walking back through the back door.

    "Well," Daud says. "That went fairly well."
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  14. - Top - End - #194
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    Bethany will take the address in hand, "Yeah, that's about as much as I expected from her. I hope this goes well; part of me hopes I'm wrong, but if I'm right I can find them with this and put a stop to all this before it gains too much steam. Sorry for interrupting your night."
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  15. - Top - End - #195
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    "Not a problem, and good hunting," Daud says with a casual salute.

    The address is on the outskirts of Greeley, a good ways outside the city. As Bethany gets close, the city's...unique qualities become readily apparent. The air stinks of death and feces, far too strongly, almost choking. Fracking rigs dot the landscape. The atmosphere grows increasingly unpleasant spiritually, oppressive and nasty. This feels like a place where hope goes to die.

    The building itself is unremarkable. It seems like an abandoned slaughterhouse, not large by Greeley's standards for such buildings. There's no sign of habitation, but the feeling of despair and the slaughter, the systematic ending of countless lives, is stronger here. This is a bad place, not as bad as the wendigo's lair, but bad.
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  16. - Top - End - #196
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    Perhaps it hasn't been entrenched her as long? If so that's good, that means it's taken less victims in the time it's been here.

    It's not her forte, of course, but in times like this, you want to have a layer of defense, so Bethany pulls up some power to weave over herself, focusing on dropping out of sight for the moment with a whispered "Kyen."

    Once she's confident the veil will hold, hiding her from onlookers, she'll proceed inside.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Going to do a fairly standard veil here. I've got no specialty in this kind of magic, so it's just raw discipline and conviction for this one. Gonna be doing a +5 block versus perception to make myself unnoticable (big distinction from invisible).
    Discipline roll to see how badly I flub it. Anything under a 5 adds 1 more mental stress to me: (4d3-3)[5]
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  17. - Top - End - #197
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    Bethany goes in under the veil and finds the door locked, quite thoroughly so. A bit of magic deals with that quickly and almost silently, and she's inside. The door leads to a foyer, and then to the old killing floor. The concrete is deeply stained with blood, layers and layers of it. The walls are burned black and stained with more blood. Hooks for hanging carcasses from sway slightly in the breeze from the door being opened. The smell of blood, death, and feces is stronger here, as is the feeling of death and pain lingering in the spirit world.

    More surprising is a subtle chill to the air - a physical chill, not spiritual. The air in here is colder than it was outside, and while it does carry a slight magical hint to it, it is also definitely a physical sensation, like an air conditioner but subtler and stranger.

    The feeling is so odd that it arouses a strange, burning curiosity in her, and she cannot help but follow the feeling of cold. It leads her down the stairs, across the killing floor, and through a door, growing slowly stronger all the while. The feeling of pain eases slightly, or changes, with tones of regret shot through it like color in glass.

    She follows the chill to a metal door, unmarked, closed but not locked. The metal feels very cold to the touch, and she can hear a faint whistling sound from the other side, like wind.
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  18. - Top - End - #198
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    Well, nothing for it but to press on. She'll attempt to (very quietly) open the door so she can peek inside. What in the world is that presence? That regret?
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  19. - Top - End - #199
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    Bethany cracks the door and finds...a blizzard? Inside a building? It seems impossible, but there it is, right in front of her. The room is filled with snow swirling in a strong wind, coating the floor and walls with frost and snow. The air is frigid, especially when the wind blows out the crack of the door into the wizard's face.

    It's hard to see what's inside, but after a moment, a gap in the snow lets Bethany see a ghostly pale woman seated at a desk, beautiful and haunting, in the very heart of the blizzard. Then the curtain of snow closes in again, and all she sees inside is whiteout.
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  20. - Top - End - #200
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    Bethany has never been one for fire magic; generating heat has never been a specialty of hers, given her focus on gravity. But snow isn't all cold, is it? It's also water, and the force of the wind can be eroded if the shielding spell in question is maintained properly.

    So, she focuses for a moment, putting her power into a water spell without leaning on her implements, as they aren't suited for water based spellcraft. The spell itself is a clever little thing; the idea is quite simple, as it's intended to use a cascading spell structure, latching onto the snowflakes in the air and bouncing off them to erode the wind surrounding them. Theoretically, this should result in the snow in the air, upon reaching within a bubble radius around her, simply calming down - as long as there's snow, there won't be wind, at least within the bubble of magic around Bethany.

    "Moiress" Bethany whispers with conviction, putting her will into the spell... and then she steps forward, deeply wanting to find out what the source of this pain and regret is.

    Spoiler
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    Discipline roll to make sure my spell doesn't backfire: (4d3-3)[6]

    For every point below 5, I'll take 1 mental stress. Either way, this should result in a +5 block against wind in snowy conditions.
    Last edited by Halae; 2019-08-09 at 09:58 PM.
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  21. - Top - End - #201
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    The spell works, and the wind dies down around Bethany, leaving the snow to fall calmly to the ground. She walks in, and reaches the desk, where the pale, eerie woman is watching her with a slight smile. "I don't get visitors often," she says, her voice soft as wind whispering through icicles, flavored with a Japanese accent. "Welcome to my home. Please, have a seat, tell me what brings you here." She gestures towards another chair, on the other side of the desk.
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  22. - Top - End - #202
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    Bethany takes the seat with a nod, "Thank you," Being under guest rights is a big deal, after all, "I'm... well, I'm investigating supernatural disturbances in the city is all," Bethany extends a hand up towards the falling snow, "The cold, the pain, the regret. This kind of energy... well, I wanted to see what the source was. I am, admittedly, not a greatly skilled individual when it comes to healing or medicine, but I like taking away people's pain, so that they might recover."

    "To be honest, I was expecting something considerably darker. This is just beautiful, if sad," A slight flush comes to Bethany's face as she realizes what she said, "I- er..." A sigh, "My apologies. My tongue got away from me."
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  23. - Top - End - #203
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    "Beautiful and sad," the pale woman says, her tone melancholy. "That sounds accurate. Tell me, healer, what should I call you? You may call me Kaori."
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  24. - Top - End - #204
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    "Call me Beth," the wizard responds, using a shortening of her normal name. It doesn't pay to tell a spirit your full name, after all, "Kaori, why exactly are you here, in this place?" A broad question, it leaves it open for whatever Kaori wants to answer with.
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    "This place feels like home," Kaori says in a voice like ice chiming as it cracks. "There is an echo in the air, a feeling of loss sunk into the bones of the earth beneath this house. It is fitting."
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  26. - Top - End - #206
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    "Fitting? How can it be fitting?" That's just confusing, is what that is. Bethany is finding it hard to think completely straight right now, so she's not coming to the right conclusions, "Loneliness isn't a position anybody should be in."
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    "Perhaps not, but it is the position that is natural to me. It is what I am." The pale woman shrugs loosely. "I think you know something of nature, no?"
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  28. - Top - End - #208
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    "More than I'd like to admit," Bethany says quietly, thinking back to how she learned of her parents' manipulating her development in-utero, "Who are you, exactly?" A question for more than just a name.
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    "My name is Torment, and would you know yet more?" The pale woman's face is a ghastly smile, calm and cold and utterly lacking in joy.
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  30. - Top - End - #210
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    "Knowing something is the first way to solving the problem," Bethany recites, falling back on some old psychology, "If you don't want to share, that's fine, but I still feel the need to ask." geeze, it's cold in here. She shivers some, rubbing her arms.
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