The Order of the Stick: Utterly Dwarfed
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  1. - Top - End - #151
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    ylvathrall's Avatar

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Ivar keeps control in the rushing current, but the others are soon dragged under the water and tumbling out of control. In the dark, it's hard to say when you pass under the rock; the rapid movement of the water and the suffocating darkness are the same either way. Swimming or being carried by the current, either way the result is the same, and you continue, wondering whether your breath will hold out, wondering whether you will drown here in the dark, your body never found.

    But finally you emerge from under the rock. Ivar is still smoothly in control and surfaces easily, while Dandolin, Steve, and Azar are all being swept along and have to fight to get to the surface for a gasp of air before going back under.

    You have emerged into a larger cavern, lit an eerie green by an unknown source. The river is cutting a narrow channel through the rock, and just ahead, it goes over a cliff, all jutting rocks and jagged edges. It looks like about a forty foot drop, and then the river opens up into an underground lake. Ahead is an island, not particularly large - perhaps forty feet in diameter. On it, a familiar spectral figure is standing, watching you.

    How long does it take? How long could you have taken, cold and alone and half-drowned in the dark? the voice whispers into your mind. It doesn't seem to be accompanied by a magical effect this time.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Dandolin, Steve, and Azar have to make DC 17 Reflex saves or go over the edge, taking (3d6)[14] falling damage.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

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  2. - Top - End - #152
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Azar! Dandolin! calls Torson, as he attempts to swim to the island.

    "We're here, to help, Yazdal," he gasps between strokes. "What's your name, little girl?"
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  3. - Top - End - #153
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Yazdal, the voice says. I remember Yazdal. I used to live there. Before they sold me.... There's a lull, the space between thoughts, and then No one cared.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

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  4. - Top - End - #154
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Wading towards the island, Azar cries out. “What happened to you, little girl? Can we help ease your pain?
    Chaotic Good, probably

  5. - Top - End - #155
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Dandolin almost tumbles over the edge of the falls, but thankfully Steve manages to break free of the current and pull her out. Shaking her head to rid herself of the excess water, Dandolin turns towards the mysterious apparition. "Sold you? Are you saying the villagers were bad people? Did they do something that made everyone disappear? Please.....tell us how we can help you."

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Thank Savara for rope!
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  6. - Top - End - #156
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    A parent is supposed to take care of their children, the voice says as you reach the island. It's not much, just a spot of rock sticking up out of the water, only a few inches above the river. That's what they always told me. So why did they give me to these people? WHY?

    As you get close, you see the spectral figure is standing over a body. It's small - a child, not much over thirteen - and it's obvious even at a glance that she was treated very, very badly before she died. It's hard to be sure, but it looks like the corpse isn't decaying - and you're quite sure her features are the same as the specter's.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  7. - Top - End - #157
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    We'll see ya properly buried, child,” says Torson. “Have you got a blanket with ya, Dandolin, or shall we pile a cairn here?” He glances about the cavern. “I don't think we can take her back the way we came in.”
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  8. - Top - End - #158
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    BarbarianGuy

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    "We can't leave her here Torson! She would never find peace if we did." Turning back to the spector's, Dandolin tries to answer her question. "It's hard for me to say Honey....I don't know what drives humans to do what they do. I what I do know is that humans can be hurtful, can be uncaring and cruel. But they can also be tricked. The ones that gave you away might not have seen the wonderful thing a child like you can be, or perhaps they were convinced that giving you to these people would be what was best for you, not knowing the pain you were forced into. No matter the reason, you didn't deserve the pain you experienced, so why do you let them keep hurting you, even when they are gone? Don't you deserve some peace after everything that has happened?"
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  9. - Top - End - #159
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    There is no peace! the voice says, resonating through the caverns of your minds. There is only suffering!

    Steve draws Dandolin's attention upward. It looks like there's an opening in the ceiling - narrow, it would be a squeeze, and it's not clear where it goes, but it's something. Unfortunately, as she looks up, she also sees the darkness in the upper corners of the cavern boiling, writhing. After a moment, it becomes clear what it is:

    Shadows. Dozens and dozens and dozens of shadows.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  10. - Top - End - #160
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Dandolin's eyes widen in fear at the sight. Stay calm Dandolin. Use the fear, don't let it use you, that is the key to survival. The Fey takes a deep breath then pets Steve between his antennae, the spot he enjoys the most. The act of keeping her mount calm girds her own resolve. She looks again at the spector, such a poor innocent girl who didn't deserve the life she was given. "You're right....there is only suffering and pain and darkness in this place. I can't possibly imagine what it was like to be left alone in such a wretched place like this. But you don't need to stay here, we're here now and we can bring you back home, or if you like, we can bring you to someplace nicer. So please, let us help you be happy, let us bring you back into the light." Dandolin holds her hand out to the ghostly girl, offering it as a sign of good will and care.
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  11. - Top - End - #161
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "By Arash," mutters Torson, staring up at the swarms of shadows circling the ceiling.

    A gray mist appears and melts away at his feet. In its place is a playful puppy, barking and fawning in place for a pat on the head.

    "His name is Wolf," says Torson. "He can play with us for a little while. We really aren't mean people, we like to make friends." He tries to keep his voice calm and friendly, but he keeps an eye towards the roof of the cavern.
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  12. - Top - End - #162
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Azar just stands and watches the action. He doesn’t want to overwhelm the little girl, so he just stands back and lets Ivar and Dandolin do the talking, while trying to look as non-threatening as possible.
    Chaotic Good, probably

  13. - Top - End - #163
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    This is my home now. She told me so, the voice says, despair and loss ringing in the mental tone so sharp and biting that you can feel it. The ghost does reach out and take Dandolin's hand, very tentatively.

    That's nothing, however, compared to the reaction when Ivar summons the puppy. There's a wordless mental scream of fear and anguish, so sharp and piercing it hurts, physically, echoing through the hollow spaces in your mind, bringing up every sorrow and shame and secret guilt. Dandolin takes the worst of it, the specter's touch turning to ice that is cold in more than a physical way in her hand. Her body aches. But the piercing mental scream is not kind to Ivar or Azar, either.

    Spoiler: OOC
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    Ouch. Dandolin takes (6d6)[29] points of damage, this damage bypasses all energy resistance and damage reduction, DC 18 Fortitude save for half. All of you have to make a DC 12 Will save or be dazed for one round - mostly a flavor thing right now, since it's not in outright combat.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  14. - Top - End - #164
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Torson quickly mutters "By Arash" and the puppy disappears in a cloud of mist.
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  15. - Top - End - #165
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Dandolin screams in extreme pain as the cold travels up her arm, shocking her system. Steve buzzes angrily at the ghost girl for hurting his Mistress, but a sense of forced calm keeps him from outright attacking her. Dandolin, shivering, glassy eyed, stares at the Spector. "It's ok.....t-t-the d-d-dog is g-g-gone and w-w-we w-w-won't let it c-c-come b-back. C-c-can we k-k-keep t-t-t-talk-k-king? I-it w-was nice t-t-t-talking t-to y-y-you...."
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  16. - Top - End - #166
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "I'm sorry," says Torson. "There'll be no more pets." He steps back away from the girl and bites his tongue.
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  17. - Top - End - #167
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    S-sorry...hurt you...hurt everyone...she said so.... the voice says. The ghost doesn't move further, and Dandolin feels no additional pain. But above, the writhing cloud of shadows goes from slow churning to a boil - and starts to descend, in a group, their movements speaking of rage. Just want this to s-s-stop. Don't wanna hurt anym-more....
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  18. - Top - End - #168
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "Wait! Don't listen to her!" calls Torson, preparing to dive underwater. "We're friends! We're here to help!"

    "By Arash!" he shouts, applying a healing spell to the small body on the island.

    Stymied by the lack of any effect, he gestures at Dandolin. "By Arash!"
    Last edited by TheYell; 2019-10-12 at 07:09 PM.
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  19. - Top - End - #169
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "Then don't. Y-you ch-choose what hap-p-pens next. We can t-take you w-with us, w-we can le-eave this p-p-place, and y-y-you won't h-have to hurt or B-BE hurt anym-more. O-Or you c-can stay, k-kill us on the ord-ders of s-someone who hurts y-you, and s-stay miserable and in p-pain. You didn't h-have a ch-ch-choice before, but you do now." Stiff and still in great pain, Dandolin tries to wrap her body around the ghost of the girl, trying to give the poor child a hug despite her incoporeality. Warm light washes over her as Torson's spell takes effect, relieving some of the pain.
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  20. - Top - End - #170
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Just wanted someone to h-help. Someone, anyone, to j-just make it go a-away. Please make it stop. The ghost shakes, then dissipates into wisps of glowing mist that fade into the air.

    But nobody came.

    The shadows start to descend, slowly drifting through the air.

    I'm s-sorry.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  21. - Top - End - #171
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Tears start to form in Dandolin's eyes, but her steely resolve kicks in. "Guys...Hop on. We're leaving." She raises her hand, making the proper gestures for her magic. "By Savara I summon you!" After everyone has climbed on, Steve buzzes over to the dead body. "Steve, GRAB!" The wasp grabs ahold of the small body, easily picking up the tiny weight.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show

    Cast SNA 2 (1d3)[2] Fire Beetles
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  22. - Top - End - #172
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "Here's hoping you're right," says Torson, as he climbs onto Steve. "Reckon they won't attack us while we're carrying her."
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  23. - Top - End - #173
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    If they do attack us, though, I’m ready” Azar says as he climbs onto Steve. Seeing the extent of Dandolin‘s injuries, he lays his hand on her shoulder, channeling some of his life energy into her, repairing cells and organs.

    Spoiler: OoC
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    Use Kinetic Healer to take 1 burn and heal Dandolin for (4d8+12)[26]
    Chaotic Good, probably

  24. - Top - End - #174
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    The flight up through the crowd of shadows is harrowing, and the girl's body proves to be no protection. Two shadows come close enough to take swipes at you before you reach the tunnels. Once there, the passage is claustrophobically narrow, and the light barely extends far enough to see the end of Steve's antennae before being swallowed up by supernaturally intense darkness. The rocks snag on your clothing, tearing and scraping your skin, drawing blood in places though none of the scrapes seem dangerous. The sound of broken sobbing echoes through the tunnels, from nowhere and everywhere, whimpers and sobs and whines in dozens of voices from multiple species all resonating in the dark. More shadowy hands reach up from the darkness, reaching for you, even as the crying peaks and an overwhelming feeling of remorse, regret, and guilt strikes each of you.

    Spoiler: OOC
    Show
    Works out for one shadow attacking each of you (including Steve), and a Will save from everyone but Steve.

    Attack on Azar: (1d20+4)[5] incorporeal touch
    Damage: (1d6)[5] Con damage, manifesting as feelings of weakness and malaise

    Attack on Dandolin: (1d20+4)[22] incorporeal touch
    Damage: (1d6)[1] Dex damage, manifesting as numbness and loss of feeling.

    Attack on Ivar: (1d20+4)[13] incorporeal touch
    Damage: (1d6)[6] Wis damage, manifesting as confusion and despair

    Attack on Steve: (1d20+4)[16] incorporeal touch
    Damage: (1d6)[1] Str damage, manifesting as lack of muscular power, loss of motor control, and muscles not responding
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  25. - Top - End - #175
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    Torson moans with loss, forcing himself to clutch Steve's back harder against the urge to throw everything away by letting go. "Cruel magics...let's keep moving!"
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  26. - Top - End - #176
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Tears stream down Dandolin's pale face as the sobs and shrieks of agony fill her head. She screams out, pressing her hands hard into her temples, the rough edge of her adamantine lance gouging into her scalp when she does. Steve continues to fly higher and higher, racing to get out safely with his Mistress and the beaten corpse of the girl as quickly as possible. His great strength ebbs slightly at a shadowy touch, causing him to barely notice the weight of the two humans on his back as well.
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


  27. - Top - End - #177
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    As a shadowy hand reaches out to grab Azar, he feels an overwhelming feeling of malaise, but the hand fails to grasp him, and the feeling fades slowly. Even though he knows that it probably won’t help, he quickly turns his torso to fire a bone blast towards the shadowy hand that had tried to grab him.

    Spoiler: Rolls, if needed
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    (1d20+9)[13]
    (4d8+12)[33]
    Chaotic Good, probably

  28. - Top - End - #178
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    You work your way up through the tunnels, which draw tighter and tighter, with the sounds of suffering still echoing in your head. In places, you're almost more crawling than flying, clothes snaring on the rocks and having to be torn or cut, skin scraping, joints aching.

    Finally, you turn a corner and see an opening leading down. It seems like it emerges in the upper corner of the room with the altar - you've ascended that far - and hidden behind a shelf of stone so you couldn't see it from below. There's one last mental shriek of rage and seething hatred, sounding far, far more malevolent and inhuman than the girl's voice did, and you are out, flying out of the cavern in a rush, shadows boiling out behind you. They stop at the entrance of the cave...but the sun is setting.
    Please don't capitalize my name.

    I wrote an original urban fantasy series. You can read it for free at http://emrysvaughn.com/

    I'm currently writing an epic fantasy series, which you can read for free at http://www.brokenlandserial.com/

    Cho avatar by Noel. Thanks!

  29. - Top - End - #179
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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "Do we have time for the fire ring again?" asks Torson. "If not, let's make a stand on the hilltop. We can build a cairn for the girl at the foot of the statue."
    Empyreal Lord of the Elysian Realm of Well-Intentioned Fail

  30. - Top - End - #180
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    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: Imagine Tomorrow [IC]

    "Good Idea, we'll have a better position there, and the girl will be near someone who can protect her in spirit. Go Steve!" Steve immediately buzzes towards the statue, flying high into the air until he hovers nearby the statue and apparant grave of Elith Paren.
    Quote Originally Posted by Suzanne Collins
    Strange things did happen here, no stranger would it be if we met at midnight in the hanging tree


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