Stone Man Pass

As we play, occasionally we'll close a thread and open a new one to keep the size of threads (and relative complexity) down to a dull roar. Here's where we store the closed posts from the history of Errant Road.

Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Caoimhe Faelan » May 21st, 2010, 12:30 pm

Suriah's eyes stared blankly ahead of her, the image burned into her mind. She heard something, vaguely, at the edge of her mind, about "shocked" and "could have been worse." She knew part of it was directed at her, but she could not make herself focus. The sudden appearance of Drusia should have shocked her more, except that at this point, her whole world had narrowed to the spine and the piece of wood.

Shakes and soft slaps from Rose seemed to bring her back to the real world. Her eyes widened as she looked at the two women, realizing that one of them looked like her - ears and all. Well, slightly pointier. With a mumbled apology, Suriah rolled to her knees and threw up, unable to contain it any longer.

"Oh dear god, oh - " She began muttering under her breath, tears running down her face. The initial shock was wearing off into panic and fear. She glanced behind her, looking past Rose and Drusia, and dry heaved a moment more before crawling a bit farther away.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » May 21st, 2010, 1:51 pm

This, Sister Rose could deal with. "Excuse me," she told Drusia, and stepped over to where the girl was coiled into a tight ball of misery. A quick Purification spell -- all nuns and priests knew how to cast it -- took care of the purely physical part of it, and as for the mental part ...

"There, there," Rose said, wrapping her arms gently around the girl. "There's nothing we can do --" except learn the who and the why, and maybe take countermeasures -- "and whoever it was, at least they didn't suffer. Is this the first time you've seen something this awful?" A tearful nod answered the question, and confirmed what Rose had been thinking. "It's all right to cry about it." She kept her embrace in place, and maintained her silence.

At least her oral silence. The comforting hug provided a good opportunity for some mind-talk to Drusia, however. <"I'd say she's at least as harmless as Lillith, wouldn't you? She can't be faking that reaction, she's really never seen anything like this before. (And I wish I hadn't, either.) I don't think she knows any more about what happened here than we do. So now what?">

Rose wished she hadn't changed into the military outfit earlier; it wasn't necessary here, from the looks of it, and the girl might be more reassured by a less military-looking figure. Then again, she might not take well to the presence of a Veracian nun ... after all, Rose had only met one half elf who did. Well, one played the cards one was dealt. She maintained the hug as the sobbing continued, but at least, grew softer.

The sound of a door closing back at the inn announced the emergence of Lillith for her meditation, but for once, Rose's attention was elsewhere.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Drusia » May 21st, 2010, 7:29 pm

<"I'd say she's at least as harmless as Lillith, wouldn't you? She can't be faking that reaction, she's really never seen anything like this before. (And I wish I hadn't, either.) I don't think she knows any more about what happened here than we do. So now what?">

<"Yes. I wonder what she's doing here. Most half-elves try to hide themselves from those that hunt them. I've rarely just run into one working in - "> I glance the way she came <"- a stable.">

Is it possible that this explosive was meant for her? It doesn't seem likely. Anyway, if she was the target, why not bob the stable? Hmm... still, an odd coincidence.

"We should get her back to the others," I say aloud, for the half-elf's benefit. "She doesn't need to be here near this... mess. Besides, she might like to meet Lillith." The presence of another half-elf might calm her, and help reassure her that I mean her no harm. Just in case she has the reaction of most half-elves and tries to run screaming at the sight of me.

-- Drusia
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » May 21st, 2010, 9:10 pm

"Besides, she might like to meet Lillith."

"That's a very good idea," Sister Rose replied. She turned back to Suriah. "It's okay, we're with you. There's someone you should meet, someone who can help you." If there's one thing Lillith is preternaturally good at, it's calming the distressed.

The half-elf priestess-in-training was just about to round the corner into the open space where the devastated gazebo had been (and thus to get an eyeful of the sickening vertebrae), but Rose raised a hand to stop her. "Stay right there. There's no reason why you should be distressed by this too. You can be helpful here. This poor woman has had quite a fright." She stood up, gently coaxed Suriah into doing the same, moved her slowly over to where Lillith was waiting.

"Another half elf ..." Lillith breathed, as the two members of the same persecuted race regarded each other.

-------------

"I'm worried," Brad fretted to Argus. "She shouldn't be out there by herself. Should I go with her?"
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Drannin » May 21st, 2010, 10:16 pm

Argus shook his head. "She'll be fine. Whatever happened most likely didn't involve us." Bull. We just arrive in town, and there's an explosion at the very inn we're staying at? Too much of a coincidence. Not that Brad needed to be freaked out by that fact. "She just needs some time alone Brad, to get her bearings back. Just give her a few moments. Believe me, she'll be fine." Brad seemed mollified, and subsided a little.

There was one issue dealt with. While damaged, the inn was holding strong (a quick probe had determined that). Now, where was Maduin...?
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Caoimhe Faelan » May 21st, 2010, 10:27 pm

Suriah followed Rose's instruction, stopping dead in her tracks at the sight of Lillith. "You're... like me." The words came out slowly, as if impossible to comprehend. I'm not the only one left! The thought flooded her mind with relief. Even though she had heard of other half-elves, she'd never met one, and had begun to doubt their existence.

"I - I'm Suriah. It's a pleasure to meet you." The words were mechanical, a formality bred into her. Her tendency not to blink had come into play, regarding Lillith with amazement through huge, doe-like eyes. It hadn't quite sunk in that Drusia was an elf - she'd kind of made herself believe she'd hallucinated that part - and this was almost too much.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » May 21st, 2010, 11:32 pm

Lillith's own eyes grew wide for a moment before she recovered her power of speech. "I'm Lillith. Are you --"

An Errant? Crazy? A continent from home, and on the run from that butchering ranger, the way I am? Another of this town's half-witted Luminosita fluffers? One of Drusia's spawn? A threat to me? As scared as I am? Are you --

"All right?"

-----------

The meeting of the two half elves seemed to be going about as well as could be hoped for, Sister Rose reflected. Good; that meant that maybe she and Drusia could turn their attention to what had happened here. She gritted her teeth and tried to put the human remains out of her mind as she examined the scene.

It looked like the blast had happened right at the center of the gazebo. There was a small crater of sorts where the wooden floor of the structure had been. On three sides, the gazebo itself had been shattered into flinders; on the fourth, intact boards and even ornamental pieces were scattered about. It looked like the human body had taken the brunt of the explosion in this direction ... which was all too consistent with what Rose had seen as she approached the site.

Where's Miguel when you need him? Rose thought; he was the divination/forensics expert. Anything she could do magically to learn more about this site would be an improvisation, nothing more. She searched her memory for magic she'd learned back in the old days, as her special-ops unit was forming ... and found something that Kenny had done. Limited, but worth a try. She'd need help.

"I'd like to catch, without harming, about half a dozen small birds," she told Drusia. "Got anything that can help with that?"

Without waiting for an answer, she took a deep breath, walked over to the still-steaming spinal column, and started collecting crystal splinters.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Caoimhe Faelan » May 21st, 2010, 11:51 pm

Suriah's thoughts whirled, following a similar path to Lillith's. In response to the question, she shook her head slowly and asked, quietly, "Are you?"

One of her "hunches" was acting up, telling her that this girl who looked so much like her felt the same way she did. Confused, lost, and a little - relieved. She forced herself to blink, reminding herself that not blinking made people think she was weird.
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Drusia » May 22nd, 2010, 2:21 am

"I'd like to catch, without harming, about half a dozen small birds," she told Drusia. "Got anything that can help with that?"

I blink. That's... an odd request.

"Um..." I say. "...I have some bread. Would that help?"

-- Drusia
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Re: Stone Man Pass

Postby Graybeard » May 22nd, 2010, 1:49 pm

"Never mind, it was just an idea," Sister Rose muttered. She'd remembered a trick to deduce where a shattered object had come from, by seeing where birds flew carrying the surviving pieces of the object. But what good would it do to know the origins of the crystal fragments? What they needed to know was who had been killed by them, and why.

It was time for some old-fashioned, feet-on-the-street gumshoe work. If they could find any traces of the unfortunate victim's clothing, some kind of forensics might be possible. What might have survived the blast? She set to work scouring the west side of the ruined gazebo, the side where the victim's body had borne the brunt of the explosion, for anything more telling than a scrap of scorched fabric or bone to work with ... and a few minutes later, she found something.

A monocle. Made of bronze.

"Porpington Bree, that weird poet we met on the road, was wearing one of these, wasn't he?" Rose said, lifting the lens (cracked and distorted, but still recognizable) so that Drusia could see it. "I thought I recognized him when we got here earlier, but he denied that that was his name, or that we'd ever seen him before. But you don't see things like this every day..."

------------

"I -- guess I'm all right," Lillith said, not sure how much of her recent travails to describe to this unfamiliar girl. ("Girl"? She looked to be only a few years younger than Lillith herself, and that could make her anywhere from 25 to 40 in calendar years, half-elf maturation being what it was.) "Come inside with me. We need to get away from this place, and I can meditate later."
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