The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #151
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    Sophie realizes how hungry she is when the foot is set down and digs in eagerly. Trick is a much better cook than she is.

    "Yes. I felt like what I could already do was... made more. I've always been pretty good at getting people to talk. Now I managed to get a mad scientist to play nice," she says. "And imbue a bullet with magic. The glow was golden, like sunlight. It lasted for a few hours and I got here as soon as it stopped. There was also an image inside it. An inferno and a hand in front of it, according to others."
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  2. - Top - End - #152
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "Hours?" Trick asks, clearly shocked, "Raw empowerment effects on the scale and breadth you're talking about should last a couple minutes, at most. And it only ended as you were getting home?" the warlock considers that a moment, and then extends a hand to Sophie, "Could I see your hand a moment, honey? There might be lingering traces of whatever it was on your essence, and if there is I could get a read on it and figure out where it came from."
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  3. - Top - End - #153
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "You're the specialist here, dearest," Sophie says, reaching out with her hand. "It didn't end just as I was getting home. I waited at GLoG until it did. I decided I'd rather not glow all the way back." She pauses. "There's another thing... the Messengers are silent. Before it happened, they almost sounded happy and relieved, then they were gone."
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  4. - Top - End - #154
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "You've mentioned them before. Some kind of spirit of humanity or something?" Trick asks. As she does so, she'll feel something sharper than Trick's hand touching hers, as Trick injects a small piece of her own power into Sophie, looking for a reading on exactly what it is that it feels like.
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  5. - Top - End - #155
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "I don't know what they are. None of us hunters do. They just endow us with powers and show us the truth about our home world. And now they're silent."

    Trick will no doubt feel a rush of power just by touching Sophie's soul now. It's bursting at the seams with Essence and the Unconquered Sun's divine fire. It seems to envelop and imbue Sophie's natural human soul, merged with it irrevocably.
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  6. - Top - End - #156
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    Trick isn't talking anymore. Sophie may also get the sense that Trick didn't hear what she just said. She's just... staring at Sophie's hand.
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  7. - Top - End - #157
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "Trick? Are you okay?" Sophie's sounding slightly panicked. The last thing she needs is something happening to her wife while she's trying to help her. The newly-Exalted Solar reaches out and touches the tiefling's cheek with her other hand.
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  8. - Top - End - #158
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "I'm fine, I'm fine," Trick says, laying her warm hand over Sophie's, "Don't worry, nothing's happened to me. I'm just... kind of in shock."

    "See, this sort of power is common. Not really something people often use, but common enough," she says, pulling back her hand and breathing out, her eyes still wide, "There's etched lines of power. They're called ley lines, and they run through the next best thing to everything. Think of them as a magical river system - they flow magical energy throughout a given world, usually centered on a few wellsprings out from the world's core. Extremely powerful celestial bodies, like the sun, have them too. Most often, this sort of magic is what people make artifacts out of; it's usually like damming a small creek for enough power to support a town."
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  9. - Top - End - #159
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    [Trick or Treating]

    Khannie's reaction is immediate and probably pretty predictable.

    "COOL!" she exclaims as she holds the object up to peer through it.

    She's pretty excited about this thing. Mostly because she hasn't ever gotten a real magic item all her own before!

    Obviously her mega evolution stone doesn't count, since that isn't magical.

    Not even a little bit.

    Because everyone knows that pokemon aren't magical at all.

    Shooting giant energy beams out of their mouths?

    Totally mundane.
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  10. - Top - End - #160
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    Sophie breathes out with relief.

    "I think I see where this is going. Back in GLoG, I spoke to a dryad, who summoned a spirit. And he called me... 'Sun Chosen'."
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  11. - Top - End - #161
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    Trick nods, "That doesn't surprise me. But the... the mechanics of what happened are insane."

    Trick stands up, pacing back and forth, her tail moving from side to side in that manner it often does when she's thinking hard, "Normally when a blessing happens, it's like what most priests do - a bucket of divine power for the purposes of creating a specific effect. Druids can pull directly from the ley lines for what they want; using the river analogy, they store their buckets of ley line water and dump them on the problem they want to solve, which is how they do magic pulled from the land. then they go back to the river when they want more, since they can't depend on a god to send them discreetly packaged bits of their power."

    "Neither of those is what happened here," Trick says, "You didn't get a bundle of energy, to be used and expended for a purpose. Your... your soul isn't mortal anymore. It's the same kind of construction I've seen in purely conceptual beings that have taken on physical form, like angels, and fey. And as if that wasn't enough, you didn't just get sent buckets to keep your power in. you didn't get any sort of container at all!"

    Trick kneels down next to Sophie's chair, and looks her right in the eyes, the tiefling's own red orbs looking on in astonishment, "You got turned into a demigod aligned with perfection and radiance. you don't have a container for the power because you are literally the wellspring of energy in itself."
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  12. - Top - End - #162
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    [Nigel's House]

    The scene Nigel opens the door to is not generally something you want to see in the middle of the night. Or ever, probably, but that's beside the point.

    Casting one last terrified glance over her shoulder, back down the street, is a younger woman of perhaps 16 or 17 years of age. Light brown hair that may have once been in a lazy bun is now messily sprawled across her shoulders and face, sticking to her places by a long sprint's worth of sweat.
    Clinging tightly to her blouse of her school uniform, clutched in her arms and staring over her shoulder, is a very young boy of perhaps 5 or 6. Black hair obscures most of his face, but the taught posture of his body and skipping breaths indicate similar terror in him. He is dressed in pajamas, much like Nigel, though his are a light shade of green.

    It's rude, but she's far beyond caring as she tries to quickly scamper past Nigel and into his house.
    "Shut the door, shut the door!"

    A light breeze billows down the street, with something vaguely reminiscent of a disappointed sigh lurking somewhere within it.
    "Fear and creativity are conjoined twins."
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  13. - Top - End - #163
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    [Ithuriel's Demiplane]

    "You know, I've never actually done the long term committed relationship thing. Turns out being a vampire doesn't really work well for making friends, let alone getting close to someone." It's a lonely life when you're a bloodsucking monster. "Maybe that's why I'm being a bit fast? This is all kind of new to me. The last time I had someone by my side for any length of time, I was a feral demon who had the mental capacity to categorise things as "eat", "****" or "ignore" and that was about it."

    Wait, did she ever explain the demon episode to Ambriel? That's a whole can of worms just waiting to be opened right there. Oh well.

    "So yes, of course I want us to be a thing." Better not to ramble for too long when poor Ambriel is being a little insecure. "I don't really know how being a thing works, I guess, but having you at my side feels...right."
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  14. - Top - End - #164
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Nigel's House

    Nigel's not a monster - faced with a scared teenager and a child he's going to step aside and let them in. He glances outside to see if he can quickly spot what's chasing her, before pulling the door shut. The babysitter will find the house pretty much shiny and new - there's a painting or two on the wall that Nigel bought because he thought they looked interesting, but all the really personal touches are missing from the place. Just through the entryway is a lounge room with a TV that's playing a game of college quidditch on mute. A medical textbook is sitting on the coffee table in the middle of the room, just near one of the couches.

    Hey, hey now it's ok. He says, setting the pistol back down on his front table and raising his hands to show he's disarmed himself. I'm a doctor, you're safe here. Are either of you hurt? Let's get the priorities out of the way first before we get into whatever's chasing them.

    Trick or Treating

    The dwarves peer as the monopod hops along into his house. This guy was definitely magic. Look how cool his house is! Their eyes light up as he offers them magical trinkets. Wizard stuff! This definitely got them closer to learning magic. Thanks mister! Thaaaaaanks! They say, immediately pulling the trinkets out of their bags of candy and showing them to first each other, then Khannie.

    Look! I got a cube! Endok says.And I got a cool snake thing that gives me good dreams! Or I could give you bad dreams if you aren't careful so you better let me pick dessert first! Olon says, sticking her tongue out at Endok. She's... probably kidding.
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  15. - Top - End - #165
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
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    [Nigel's House]

    For better or worse, there's nothing immediately visible outside that could be construed as hostile or even unusual. But that doesn't always mean much, does it?

    The babysitter quickly moves over to one of the couches, setting the boy down and giving him a once over. There's the distinct impression that she's following a routine here, to keep herself from flipping out most likely.
    "I, um...we're...uh. No. I think we're okay. We're okay..."
    She has to drag the response out through nerves and doesn't actually look herself over, but they do both look fine.

    Outside of the obvious mental and physical stress, anyway.
    Now that she's not fleeing anymore, the girl is shaking like a leaf and the boy is staring sort of vacantly into space.

    She smooths out part of his shirt in a completely pointless manner, which he doesn't really react to.
    "This...we. Uh. Thank you. Sir."
    "Fear and creativity are conjoined twins."
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  16. - Top - End - #166
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Nigel frowns as he watches the boy. His left eye lights up with tiny flecks of blue as the inbuilt medical scanner takes in the pair. It should be able to pick out any internal injuries (although not the particulars, just location and general problem).

    It's ok, sit down. He says as the scan continues. Do you need something to eat? Some water? He turns to the boy. How about you, are you ok? He's not happy with how blank the boy's looking.
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  17. - Top - End - #167
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    Trick or Treating

    "I'm glad you enjoy them. Things like that are quite easy to produce." The monopod smiles, and will close the door.

    Khannie sees a forest! Not just any forest, but a huge forest. There's towering trees, stretching up to block the sky, and looking down reveals the ground isn't in sight either. Light comes from a variety of sources- massive green fruit growing on the trees emit a sickly glow, whilst blue jellyfish-like things drift among the branches, pulsing every so often and occasionally disappearing into the mouths of six-legged furry things with flaps of skin linking their legs together like a flying squirrel's. The squirrels don't glow, and are only seen by the light of everything else, so it's hard to determine their colour. Everything's so alien it's hard to determine size, but the 'squirrels' look very big- horse-sized, maybe?
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  18. - Top - End - #168
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    [Trick or Treating]

    "Thanks mister!" Khannie calls after the monopod as he closes the door. Then she excitedly turns to her friends! "Mine's got a forest inside! Look!" she says, holding it out for the two dorfs to examine. "It's like a forest that just keeps going up and down FOREVER! Like a whole deep ocean of forest."

    That's...

    Actually a pretty apt description, really.

    "I think it's starting to get kind of late, I should probably start going home,"
    Khannie says. "Do you want to come back with me to my house? My dad could probably teleport you guys to GLoG SUPER fast so you don't have to walk the whole way or anything. Plus you could meet Zebes and my dad and maybe Miss Veronica if she's there tonight. She works on TV!"

    She thinks maybe Miss Veronica is going to be her second mom, but that's okay because her daddy is also her mommy and having two parents would be cool. Khannie wasn't totally clear on what her daddy and Miss Veronica were going to be doing tonight.

    Probably some sort of boring adult thing.

    Maybe some kind of grownup party?
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  19. - Top - End - #169
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    Sophie listens to Trick's explanation with a growing sense of bewilderment.

    "...a demigod? The sun god chose me as a vessel for their power? No, not vessel, you said this power will never run out. But why me of all people?"
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  20. - Top - End - #170
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    [Nigel's House]

    The boy's knees look pretty banged up, in a way that would indicate a pretty hard trip at some point, but that seems to be about it.
    Similarly, the girl seems to have a pretty huge bruise spreading across a good portion of her back that she's either hiding or just hasn't noticed in the shock of everything.

    Other than that, no particularly hideous injuries here!
    Just shock. And probable exhaustion.

    She absently fusses with the boy's shirt again for a moment, and then the babysitter sits down next to him. Almost immediately, the boy scooches back up against her and she holds an arm around his back. He flicks his gaze up to Nigel, with weirdly dark brown eyes, almost black, that seem to flicker through a range of fear, suspicion, and sadness before he gives a tiny little nod to the "are you okay?" question.
    Some vague semblance of coherence comes back.
    "Some water...please?"
    "Fear and creativity are conjoined twins."
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  21. - Top - End - #171
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    Nigel's House

    Nigel nods, heading deeper into the house before returning with two glasses of water. He'll set them down on the table in front of the pair, before falling into one of the other couches. He frowns as he realises that he left his drink by the door. Ah well.

    So... He'll say, after giving the pair some time to settle. Do you wanna tell me what you two are doing on my couch?

    Trick or Treating

    Olon and Endok jockey a bit for position to look through the hole, making various impressed noises as they both catch glimpses of the strange forest.

    Their eyes light up when Khannie suggest going back to her house. That's where the wizard lives! Yeah! We can ask him about wizard books. Olon agrees. It was close right? Endok asks. They'll happily follow Khannie back to her house.
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  22. - Top - End - #172
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "A lot of gods are prophetic, or have a broader scope of knowledge than other people," Trick points out, "Could be they like you. Or it could be that you've got potential to be greater. I have no idea. There's a lot of tests I'd like to run, but you're stable, so those can wait until you're better rested." she goes to sit back down in her own chair to ponder the meaning of this over her own half-finished dinner.
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  23. - Top - End - #173
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    [Trick or Treating ==> Jace's Place]

    "Yeah! It's just down the street, c'mon!"

    And so, fifteen or so minutes later, Khannie will return home! Her costume has grass stains all over it, and she's already eating one of the chocolate frogs in spite of the fact that she's supposed to wait for the candy to be checked, but she seems fine otherwise.

    "Daaaaaaaad! Zeeeebes! I'm hoooome! And I brought some friends!" she hollers into the house as she begins taking her boots off. "Their names are Olon and Endok and I met them while I was trick or treating and I said we can take them home to GLoG so they don't have to walk the whole way!"

    Strictly speaking, they could take Riftline easily enough.

    But riding on the train?

    On Spooktober?

    You might spontaneously end up on some sort of crazy ghost train.
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  24. - Top - End - #174
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    Sophie nods.

    "Yes, you're right. It seems it's just a boon, if an unasked-for one. So there's no real danger." She pauses, then stares off into the distance as she recalls something. "I think... I've met someone like me before. A woman named Shrike, in GLoG. She was a 'Solar Exalt', chosen by the Unconquered Sun. I think she glowed just like I do now when she used her powers."
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  25. - Top - End - #175
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "Exalted, huh? Decent term for making someone into a demigod somehow. I still don't understand how it managed to rearrange your soul without compromising the integrity of it; if I tried this sort of thing, I'd leave my victim - and do note I use that word specifically - a gibbering heap on the floor. You, just... somehow have this sublime transcendence going on, and I do not want to even attempt to mess with it. Try to copy the structure for my experiments, take pictures and essence graphs, absolutely, but poking your soul at all seems like a really bad idea because I have no idea how it's balanced now."

    Trick just frowns in consternation as she talks and eats. She's the sort of person that hates it when she has a puzzle she can't or won't solve, and in this case she isn't willing to damage her wife's soul for curiosity's sake.
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  26. - Top - End - #176
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    [Mouchabière Residence]

    "I can't blame you for being cautious," Sophie says. "We do seem to be dealing with powers on an entirely different level. But since I can no longer ask a fellow Solar, I'd welcome any soul-reading you feel comfortable enough doing. Not today, though. I think we've had enough earth-shattering revelations for one evening."
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  27. - Top - End - #177
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    [Nigel's House]

    The babysitter glances down at the boy, pressing one of the glasses into his hands and waiting for him to take a sip of it before she bothers with hers.
    "Ah. Well..."
    She looks a bit hesitant here, in a decided "will he even believe me?" sort of way. Which starts rapidly devolving, the more she thinks about it, into that haunted sort of terror look again.
    "We, we, um, I was...uh, I was sitting over at-"

    Knock. Knock. Knock.

    There is a knock at the door.
    The back door.

    Pretty much immediately, both her and the boy freeze like deer in the road.
    "Fear and creativity are conjoined twins."
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  28. - Top - End - #178
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    Nigel's House

    Nigel springs to his feet at the knock. He jogs to the front door, recovers his pistol (and his drink) and heads back into the living room. Here, take this, don't shoot me in the back please. He says, setting the gun down on the table in front of her, before heading into his room through the kitchen. There's a small commotion in there before he makes it to the back door, now equipped with a white belt covered in pouches and a satchel.

    Who is it? He calls to the knocker.
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  29. - Top - End - #179
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    [Nigel's House]

    The babysitter stares at the gun in an almost dumbfounded way for a few seconds before quickly grabbing it in something vaguely similar to the correct way to hold a gun.
    She's very clearly never held one before, nor expected to.

    As soon as Nigel begins moving towards the back door, she gets up from the couch and pulls the boy close to herself.Slowly, she begins inching closer to the front door with the gun at hand and eyes glued to the back door. Gotta be able to make a quick exit, just in case this goes as horribly wrong as she's sure it's about to.

    Surprisingly, whoever is on the other side of the back door actually answers! Sounds like a relatively gruff man with a tense tone.
    "Larry from down the street. I'm trying to find my son. Did a girl happen to run over here with a little boy?"
    "Fear and creativity are conjoined twins."
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  30. - Top - End - #180
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    Quote Originally Posted by Murkus View Post
    [Tina's Place]

    Fettina and Cantata arrive at the always ritzy Sagittarius Towers, a massive and skinny skyscraper with disc-shaped apartments seeming to grow out from a single central spire. The structure seems almost flimsy from down here.

    As they enter, the lobby seems to be empty, save for a couple of trash bins, a small wall console, and the elevator doors. The latter seem to fly open when Tina simply approaches, no button press or sign-in required. A small cylindrical compartment awaits.

    "Where do you live at, Cantata? Here in the city somewhere?" Fettina asks her as she folds her wings to make it inside the elevator.
    Tina's Place

    Cantata's eyebrows raise at the elevator. Perhaps some sort of automatic dna identification or something? Eh, it doesn't matter. She's here as a guest, not on some sort of mission after all! It would make sense though, considering how grand the structure is.

    In Skyside! I get most of my work there, and the rent is relatively cheap. Cantata responds through text, shaking her head at first before typing. She follows the woman into the elevator, smiling. It's nowhere near as grand as your home though, that's for certain.
    Avatar by Gulaghar, thanks so much!
    "People wanted to be fooled. They really believed that you found gold nuggets lying on the ground, that this time you could find the Lady, that just for once the glass ring might be real diamond. You had to give them a show.”
    ~Going Postal, by Terry Pratchett

    Spoiler: Quotes from Friends <3
    Show
    Quote Originally Posted by Magtok
    If it'll keep you from linking that abomination ever again, then fine. You're evil enough. You win.

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