Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Drusia » April 18th, 2013, 8:40 pm

"We don't leave without Rose," Argus spoke up. "We go back for her, and find some way to get her out here. Covertly, if need be."

I nod. "Agreed. It honestly isn't a very tempting option if it can't go in both directions."

If my mother was here, she could put down a rune that she could gate back to - assuming she was in range. That at least would be a partial assurance that we wouldn't all get stranded somewhere hostile. Without a way to get back, this underground thing isn't very useful.

-- Desiree
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Graybeard » April 21st, 2013, 1:23 pm

OOC: OK, back home from a ten-day vacation and will accelerate things here as soon as we're unpacked. Thanks for your patience. Just a little movement until then:

Therese listened to the various comments, nodded. "We'd better get loaded up on Joe, then ... but let me do one thing first. If I'm not back in ten minutes, either come after me or go for help, your call." She headed for where the rumbling noise was coming from beneath the warped statue of Anilis, and the noise grew louder as she found a door in the statue's rear...

... And then, five minutes later, she returned, her jaw set.

"I found what I was looking for," she said. "Now let's get the hell out of here." The tree-that-walks began the trip down to Gona.
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Alberich » April 21st, 2013, 2:14 pm

Ooooh, ahhhhh, she's so mysterious, thought Anfisa, bitter that Therese's commanding, secretive, superior ways would probably excite Desiree all the more. She went along quietly.
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Graybeard » April 22nd, 2013, 8:45 am

Uh, oh, Sister Rose thought at the first sight of Therese dismounting from the tree-that-walks. I've never seen her in a mood like that before. What happened up there? Although I can just imagine...

Her own investigations hadn't turned up much more of any interest. Brother Dalton's books, by and large, were about Southern Continent languages and music and such, the kind of thing that would be useful to a priest trying to settle into a new country but that would be rendered unnecessary by things like the translator gadgets that Rose and Argus now carried. (We've got to get over our cultural antipathy to that kind of magic, or we're rapidly heading for second-rate-power status, Rose thought, not inaccurately.) Nor had a few interviews with passersby turned up much. Dalton, she learned (as much with her Empathy magic as via questions and answers), had been considered a quaint but harmless curiosity by most of the villagers; life in the Southern Continent had taught them a live-and-let-live approach to exotic religions, without the slightest interest in getting involved in them. Well, maybe Therese and the others had had better luck.

"We have to head north," Therese said without any preamble. She described the encounter at the ridge, then added a description of what she'd seen beyond the statue. "There's another terminal for the underground railroad there, and there was a car sitting in it, I think it came in while we were there."

Rose nodded at this. "We heard it pass through this village. But why does that mean we have to head north?"

Therese's face hardened. "Because it had a blue and white top."

"So?" Rose wasn't following this at all.

"And an underground car with a blue and white top is what Melusine had used to get to the site in the mountains, and what she was trying to study and learn how to use ... right up to when they killed her."
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Graybeard » April 24th, 2013, 9:16 am

[OOC: Wow, I go off line for a week, and everyone else disappears too...]

"So what you're saying," Sister Rose said, "is that there's an underground connection between here and that place in the Far North? And that that shoe of Dalton's that we found in the underground here in the village means he's probably been taken there?"

"That's about the size of it," Therese agreed.

Rose spoke a quiet curse word that she'd learned in Albigenish. It didn't have an exact translation into Veracian, which was just as well. "And we're going to have to go up there to retrieve him -- and do other things."

"Yep."

Rose thought about it for a long minute, and then the expression on her face hardened. "No. Dammit, no. We're outgunned, Therese. For once I think we have to let our military do its job. We need to go back to Douaga, and get the people on the airship briefed up, and --"

Therese interrupted. "Rose, we have to do this ourselves. They don't know what we do, and they'll just make a bad situation worse if --"

It was Rose's turn to interrupt. "No, Therese. This whole thing is about to turn into a white whale, and we're the ones who'll be dragged off and drowned. We --"

It was at this point that the girl who'd ridden back to Gona on the tree-that-walks finally came out of the sobbing, near-stuporous state she'd been in ... and once again, drew an inexplicably incorrect conclusion. Was it the forcefulness of that "No"? Had Rose's words in Veracian come close to meaning something else in the language of the village where the girl had been born? Whatever the reason, she looked up at Rose, her eyes got wide ... and she hurled herself at Rose's legs, just as she had at Argus' an hour or so earlier.

"MAMMA!"

Rose was beyond words as reflexes took over and she enveloped the girl in a comforting hug ... but not beyond mind-speech. <"There is an explanation for this, I suppose?"> she thought at Argus, wishing telepathy could communicate the sensation of speaking through clenched teeth.
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Drannin » April 24th, 2013, 2:58 pm

<"Sort of. Poor girl was about to be sacrificed for some damn fool reason, we rescued her, and now... she seems to be latching on to whoever comes along. Like you and me."> Argus shrugged helplessly.
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Graybeard » April 25th, 2013, 6:26 pm

OOC: Aargh ... as soon as we get moving again, I come down with a really hideous flu that leaves me mostly bed-ridden. I'll try to do something here as soon as my head clears, which may be a couple days.
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Graybeard » April 27th, 2013, 10:56 pm

[OOC: OK, more or less back among the living, so a bridge to the next topic in this thread...]

For a long, thoughtful moment, Sister Rose considered her unexpected "adoption" as mother figure.

We could do it, I think, and Luminosita's Nethers, it's tempting. She could be the daughter I never had. Take her back to Kiyoka, settle in at the vineyard and raise her as our own. Argus might need some selling on the idea, but I think I could do it. It would mean abandoning this quest, but dammit, haven't I done enough already on that?

No, I really haven't.


Three things then happened almost simultaneously.

First by a small margin, Sister Helen stepped in, more gently than Rose would have guessed. "Please, entrust this poor child to me," she said. "We can nurse her back to physical and emotional health here, then take her home to her real parents." She smiled. "It might even give us a chance to spread Luminosita's Word in another village in this country, in a way that lets them understand that we're not monsters or alien beings." She gently disengaged the girl from her death-grip on Rose and began murmuring to her in the language of the south; she was hardly fluent in the tongue, but compassion has a language all its own.

These words were scarcely out of Helen's mouth when the second thing happened: that same low rumbling from the sub-surface, suggesting that the underground railroad was in use. Rose recognized it immediately and drew the obvious conclusion: the car that had been up at the ridge was now pulling into the "station" beneath Gona. And that caused the third happening. Therese gave her a severe look. "We only have a few minutes to get on that thing, or not," she said. "You're the decision maker here. So decide, dammit, but if you decide not to go, I'll do it alone if I must."

Luminosita, give me wisdom ... and protect Argus and these others if I'm wrong. "Let's go," Rose said.
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Drannin » May 1st, 2013, 2:34 pm

(OOC: So, new thread?)
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Re: Douaga: the search for Brother Dalton

Postby Graybeard » May 1st, 2013, 10:53 pm

OOC:
Drannin wrote:(OOC: So, new thread?)

Patience, my friend. ;) There have been developments in the Lorrel thread group that make it timely to look at re-connecting (if not necessarily completely merging) that one and this one again. Big thing to be written tomorrow, and cross-linked in the Lorrel thread, once I've had some sleep. But yeah, a new thread will be coming soon.

(BTW, there are still abundant opportunities for you to help Bauti and Goto make themselves obnoxious. :evil: )
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