Getsemiel, part 2

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Graybeard
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

Post by Graybeard »

OOC: You guys can work out the timing however it seems to make sense -- that could have been Rose intercepting Tim on the way to offer to help Eli, or after he gets back, or whatever works. It's also entirely OK for Eli and/or Desiree to be listening as appropriate, if you wish. Just be aware that it may be a little while before I get back in touch, after about 20 minutes from now. Have a good weekend, everybody! :)
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Jack Rothwell
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

Post by Jack Rothwell »

OOC Eli's going to go this alone. For reasons that will become clear. /OOC

Eli reached the outskirts of the town and looked back briefly over his shoulder. He'd passed the Brother with barely a grunt of acknowledgement, he hadn't slowed, nor sped up for fear of drawing attention to himself. If the man he'd spoken to had been monitoring him then the possibility of further dialogue would have been dead in the water if he'd taken company with him.

But still he hesitated.

He weighed up the possibility he was being led into a trap. He weight up the possibility that what he was doing was wrong. He dismissed both ideas almost as soon as they came, the first (painful as it was to admit) because in the grand scheme of things he just wasn't that important, he never had been. Forty years of living in isolation which included a twenty year career as a guardsman hardly qualified him as a VIP and as for the second... well... didn't they say morality was objective?

And, besides, what the hell was wrong with indulging his curiosity?

The half-elf entered the woods without a backward glance.
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

Post by Alberich »

[OOC: Okay. Then Tim wished Eli a good morning and assumed he is off having one, at which point he went to the garden where Rose talked at him.]

As he was getting used to doing, Tim ignored Rose's snide swipe at the Orthodox. On some points, he suspected, she'd be as hard to reach as a heathen. There wasn't any doctrine against the use of magic or against using it for anything but healing. What there was was an attitude - and a very healthy one - about keeping it in its place, and about people keeping in their places. So the clergy wasn't full of adept mages obsessing over strange, foreign mysteries? Then it wasn't full of Blaises, either. A good thing, too! Theology was a little like magic that way. Except more dangerous. Even Rose the Reformist seemed to grasp that point, however dimly - but no need to chase that thought just now.

Tim nodded along as Rose explained this "plausible deniability" thing. He found it pretty easy to slot into his expanding view of Church and Country. It sounded very practical. "Sounds practical," he said, and meant it. After all, the Patriarch could mobilize the militia and sacrifice hundreds or thousands of troops, if the country needed it. Surely, then, he could sacrifice a few agents, and even pretend he did not know them, especially if it meant preserving the peace. Back in the days of the kings, a war might be fought to recover a favorite concubine. The Theocracy was above such things. There were higher goals. (And Tim didn't relish the role of the concubine, anyway.)

Some of the Unorthodox had trouble grasping this, but the Church was charged to administer an actual country, living in the world as it was and at the same time shepherding men's souls. That meant tolerating a lot of "irregularities" around the edges. Like not burning down every brothel in the country, as long as they kept it discreet, or like accepting emissaries from the elves, no matter what the scriptures said about the Captivity. This "plausible deniability" seemed to fit in with that kind of thing. The wisdom of the Church was confirmed.

(Tim had not detected, let alone fathomed, Argus' disdain for "political" decisions, so he had no cause to wonder whether Rose stood with him on that.)

"So, to put it bluntly: do you still want to be associated with me, and our mission, under conditions like that? I'm telling you all this so you can make your own decisions. I'd like to have you with us, but if you don't think you can do it, I'll understand."

That if you don't think you can do it nettled him a little. But really the decision was easy. "If..." Forget the ifs! "I mean, yes. Yes, I do. The patriarch wants it done. It needs doing. And I want to help do it. And, ah, keep learning whatever I need to learn to help. Like, ah, magic and like that."
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

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Sister Rose wondered if her face reflected the relief she was feeling. "Thank you. I sincerely appreciate that."

As for the others, the ones on the airship would go along, she was pretty sure, and she wouldn't be going anywhere without them anyway. But the half elves ... "Do you have any idea where Eli is going?" she asked Tim.

[OOC: That's about the size of the bites I'll be able to take for a couple of days.\
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

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Whatever his doubts about her leadership, and he was already finding them easier to forget, Tim appreciated being appreciated. To the question -

"Um, no, I don't. He was all dressed and by himself, I wished him good morning, and off he went. Maybe he got a little hungry and didn't want to wait for Desiree. I don't think he'll cause any incidents."

He meant that, too. Eli would have to be really perverse to want to start something in Getsemiel right now, and Tim didn't read him that way. "Have you found out anything about that business last night, what caused it and all, and what's going on with the others, and when we'll be setting out?"
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

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"Have you found out anything about that business last night, what caused it and all, and what's going on with the others, and when we'll be setting out?"

Don't I wish,
Sister Rose thought, but that answer wouldn't be very satisfying. She decided to try to do better. "In order: no, but we're going to find out; no; I really wish I knew what was going on with the others; and we'll set out as soon as they get back." If they come back. "My people apparently agree that he's left for either Farrel or more likely Tsuiraku, and I -- we -- will have to do the same. The only way to do that, short of going back to Saus and taking a warp gate, is by airship." She shrugged her shoulders, a curiously masculine gesture for a woman who still looked like the rather spacy (if attractive) Calfornican nun she'd adopted yesterday as her appearance, and never reverted. "So we wait for the airship. But while we're waiting, let's poke around and see what we can learn about the explosions and fires."
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Jack Rothwell
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

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The half-elf pushed his way through the undergrowth, unmindful of the branches whipping at him or the crackling of leaves underfoot. He'd started sensing something a few minutes ago that had his total attention; a feeling of magic a hundred yards ahead. It was strong, certainly stronger than anything Eli had sensed from any of the residents in Snamish. His hand clamped around the amulet like it was a talisman to protect him.

He pushed in the clearing a moment later, and the scene before him stopped his breath.

The symbol etched into the forest floor drew his eyes first. It was of fairly simple design, twelve feet across, circular and bedecked with lines and triangles that spoke of ancient origins. It glowed a faint purple, tinged with blackness. What was within the band of energy was undoubtedly the man the half-elf had spoken to.

He was thin to the point of emaciation, his body wrapped in a black robe of simple design. Under the hood of his clothing was a pale face that looked younger than the voice that issued from it.

'No, he's older...' Eli thought. 'Look at the eyes.'

They were heavily lined with dark rings under; the eyes of an old man who didn't get much sleep. The figure sat on an ornately-carved, throne-like seat which appeared to be made of solid bone. He spoke.

"You were prompt. I like that."

Eli gave him a stare that was a lot less intimidating than he wanted it to be. The man didn't seem all that much of a threat, but something about him seemed to make his skin crawl. He cleared his throat.

"Well? For the millionth time what do you want?"

"Nothing earth-shattering." He answered. "I simply find myself in need of new employees, and you're a man who caught my attention."

Eli thought of his need to answer the man's call. A suspicion flashed through his mind.

"Not slaves? Not mindless workers for you to control?"

"Oh, I already have those." The man in black tittered. "But they require too much supervision to be useful at more subtle endeavors. Take Valja, for instance.."

There was a sound nearby, a thudding noise accompanied by the fluttering of birds taking flight. Something big not far behind the half-elf had just taken a step forward. Eli's mind screamed treachery at him, he wheeled around to face the source.

The monstrosity burst through the trees before he had the chance to draw his sword. He watched in dismay at the gout of fire he'd sent from his free hand licking futilely at the barrier that, against all sanity, the creature had. He was seized and lifted off the ground, his legs pinwheeling in the air. Eli looked down in shock at a deformed, bestial face that might have once upon a time been human. He tried to scream, but no sound came out.

"Valja! Put him down!"

Incredibly, the monster did. Eli hit the ground and drew a ragged breath.

"You'll have to excuse him." The mage continued. "Valja has had a run of bad luck lately. Some mercenary bitch put a bullet in his head a week ago. I did my best to fix him up but there's only so much a few transplants and the right spells can do."

Eli rolled over and gasped. He began pushing to his feet.

"But what I lost in an employee I gained in a servant. However, he's not the kind I can send exploring. Certainly not someone who could go searching for the things I need. That would require a subtler touch, and I would be generous to the person who could provide it."

Eli considered briefly what would happen to him if he ran. He weighed up the help he'd been given, the power of the man in front of him, the usefulness of having him as an ally and the prejudicial nature of the world he found himself him. Had anyone else really helped him since he'd embarked on this mad journey? Not really. And in a world where the average elf would try to kill him and the average band of yokel human idiots would try to gut him for revealing his true nature, was an ally something he could afford to turn down?

No.

"Alright." He said. "I'm listening."

OOC Dun, dun DUUUUUUUNNNN! :twisted: /OOC
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

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What Sister Rose learned about the explosions and fires as she walked through town, doing an occasional heal but mainly looking and listening, wasn't really anything new. Apparently a large shadow had passed over the town -- Tyler wasn't the only one who called it a "devil," but an airship definitely seemed more likely -- and shortly afterward, the explosions started. It was interesting, though, that other than the one at the Millenarian temple, they hadn't done much damage. It almost seemed as if what had happened was to create a diversion rather than an actual attack. A diversion from what, and why? Rose couldn't figure that out.

The damage at the Millenarian temple was real enough; the characteristic tower/steeple had collapsed, injuring those beneath it and inflicting the sole fatal injury, to the unfortunate Sister Nymphaea who just happened to be passing by at the time. What was that all about? Rose found a quiet, earnest young Millenarian nun to try to get some answers from, but neither she nor the other Millenarians seemed to know much either.

Thus distracted, she didn't hear the blond, fit Millenarian priest she'd seen before, casting a certain spell a block or two away from the temple.

An empty horse and carriage began to careen from where he had cast to where Rose and Tim stood talking to the young nun, the horses traveling at breakneck speed.

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

"What's that, sweetheart?" Brad pointed out the window, looking down at a castle complex, as Lillith emerged from the cabin with a shy smile on her face.
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

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Tim had been keeping his eyes open, partly because he was still in a strange city, and more because he was worried about Maduin's adversaries, the one who'd gotten by him and Blaise -- curse it! and him! -- and the one who'd gone off with Maduin. His glum thought was that the evil they'd brought had been at the root of the young nun's death. And maybe it was gone with the airship and maybe it wasn't.

He saw the horses thundering their way and acted at once. There was no time to explain - just "Look out!" - as he grabbed both ladies and shoved. Further into the street, not to the inviting alley - too likely an ambush spot. Then he pelted around the horses, jumped and struggled onto the wagon, got hold of the reins, and fought to control them. Would that Lillith or Desiree were here - hadn't one of them calmed horses with a word? - the best he could hope for was to steer them away from people, and in time get them stopped. Without breaking his neck.

As he did this, he yelled back at rose. "It's empty!" (Meaning the wagon.) "Magic?" Shemmy's cousin had some kind of bestial influence, giant lizards and like that. If Rose could detect where it came from, maybe she could find their assailant. He hadn't the skill and his hands were quite full.
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Re: Getsemiel, part 2

Post by Drusia »

"... eli?" I mumble. I open one eye and note several things. The first is that the room is fairly well lit by the morning sun. The second is that I'm alone in bed. The third... I could really use a bath.

Well, since no one's bothered to wake me, I guess things must be fairly calm. I get up and put on a bathing robe that I found on the back of the door. I wonder if there's some way to get my clothes washed. Oh well, first things first. Wearing only the robe, I walk out into the temple.

I don't bump into anyone on the way to the baths, although I do hear the sounds of activity. None of my business.

I reach the baths, set the robe aside, and slide into the warm waters. Oh. My. I'm not going to miss much when I finally get to go home to Snamish, but these baths are among the few. I luxuriate, both in the wonderful hot water, and in not wearing clothing. I have to admit, I never expected a temple of Luminosa to be somewhere that understood how freeing this feels.

... now, if only I had a book, this would be paradice.

-- Desiree

OOC: Feel free to involve her in whatever.
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