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  1. - Top - End - #121
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    ~Corvus~'s Avatar

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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    The Speaker for the Lost Moor stands. "By your permission, we have a scout here to make a report."

    The scout steps forward after a nod from the Lost Moor chief. "Thanks-good. First, Humans have-use Lizard-slaves dig-make tunnel-holes for find fire-dirts. They bring-carry much-many rocks and metals. Humans chop-take much-many trees, use straight ones to make much-many stakes for secure areas, make stake-wall in big-wide circle. Has much-many row north and south and West facings, for protect gainst human horse-mens.

    They climb-watches in big-tall tree-in in compound; Humans watch-look from big-tall tree, much many archers shoot-arrows-kill. Humans watch in days, Lizards watch in nights, much-many eyes watches. We thinks maybe a hundred each night-day-watch? Most-all is mybes three hundreds. But they in trees, very strong, bad-hard not be spot-seen!

    The scout pauses to let this all sink in. He then calls another Nezumi, a younger female who currently nurses a broken arm and a wounded leg; despite this, she seems in good spirits. "My clutch-group notice they have some-few weaknesseses. Humans few-little armor-soldiers here, and Lizardmens complain armors feel bad-hot. We thinks much-most armor-soldiers with other army. There's maybe five horsies with hill-backs..." She waves her hands up and down, following the parabolic curves of a camel's humps. "They mean-spit-tough creatures, but are slow-run--we fast-run-faster--and humans have few-scarce and use for messages-send to west-lands.

    "Then...they haves much-many poke-stakers, spears for workers, not know how manys. Workers not know war-combat, they weak-bad morale; workers break-die if we do right."

    "...If can chop-fall big-tall tree, archers fall-die; most-many there, and is camp fortress-protections. I am not warlord or clan-chief but any attack-plan I thinks needs have tree chop-fall-die."

    The council murmers as the scouts sit back down. The speaker for the Green-Green-White tribe stands. "We of Green-Green-White fought these humans Yesterday. We know they stretch their resources far past the Burning Sands to the North and West. If we break them here, it will take them a long time to return."

    Finally, Chiefmistress K'challak finishes their summaries with her request. Chieftan Red-Eye. Will you do us a boon and do what you can to weaken their forces? I'm sure all of the clans here will pledge their support with soldiers of their own, should you agree. Many of the Nezumi in each tribe nod their head in agreement with her words.
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  2. - Top - End - #122
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    Absorbing the information on his new target, Red-Eye nods along. 'Thew, you know any way to make fire hard to put out, or to make other things act like fire? Got guard towers to deal with.'
    As the scout finishes he asks them a few questions: "Did you see how the guard-things were fed, weapon storage? Must eat much food if they carry much metals, ruining food may be easy way of weaken, was patrols used in forest? How far in?"
    After getting his answers agreeing weaken the invaders comes easily: "Will scout and watch-find weakness, may need to find way of making fire hard to put out, is going to be good-nice challenge."

  3. - Top - End - #123
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    The Thew sighs into his mind. Well...you have bombs, don't you?

    Anyway...I know that devils and fiends both have powers over fire beyond mortals. Why don't you ask them?


    The second scout replies, "We see-spot food from tent. Always much-plenty. We not close to see their ways of making the foods.

    Not much-many patrols; they have big-tall tree, can see far-long, shoot much-far-long. Maybe when they needs-make forest into what they make-want, but is maybe later.
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  4. - Top - End - #124
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    Bombs don't burn, only explode, and my supply is limited, can only make a handful a day.

    Satisfied with the information Red-Eye nods and looks to the representatives of the other tribes.
    "Warlord Red-Eye have things to show, was key to defeating Wani, much danger, but will show, as sign of trust."
    With that Red-Eye produces his bundles of explosives from this morning, and demonstrates how easily they blend in to the ground, before shooing everyone back and detonating it in a shower of dirt and plants.
    "Will go to man-things tomorrow, I teach magic archery before bed, any is welcome, but must bring gift in exchange for knowledge, unless join, then is reward for loyalty."

  5. - Top - End - #125
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    The Thew prods him, Some fiends that can make fire hungry and nearly-impossible to put out. The fires act as an insatiable being, and and burns everything the fire can reach.

    The Nezumi look, transfixed, at the idea of explosives, and it's clear from the hungry looks of those superiors that this would easily be coveted. There's a tension that meets the entire gathering: one that this chieftan, origins unknown and unspoken, has power that all would use if they could, and no-one can flat-out say they want it for their own.

    A general murmer of chittering ensues, and in a lull of this energy-driven conversation Red-Eye pronounces his willingness to teach others.

    Red-Eye gets enough sign-ups for a hundred unskilled Nezumi easily, and so the gifts of other tribes are put to immediate good use; Red-Eye's subordinates delegate this task to themselves and leave him free for "gifts." There are another hundred or so that also join from other clans, many of them from the Tattered Ear, and Chieftan Red-Eye can feel the desire many have and no one talks about: the metal magic bombs he makes.

    There are some that do wish for his training and offer connections or promises as gifts. There are many that identify themselves a Sorcerors, and pledge various scrolls or wands in exchange for lessons of blending the two arts. It's a long night, full of celebration and food and--it seems--encouragement, where even Red-Eye's nature as a strict and foul-tempered teacher is even welcomed.

    Spoiler: Red-Eye's haul
    Show

    From the meeting:
    (aforementioned) Rod
    Dreamwalker to Red-Eye's clan
    Bows, arrows & armor for 100 Nezumi
    ~100 recruits to Red-Eye's warband

    100 Nezumi, willing to learn archery & join his "clan."
    8x scroll of Combust (target takes 2d6+3 damage, catches fire on fail reflex)
    3x scroll of Invisibility Sphere.
    4x scroll of Lively Step (30' radius, all within gain +10' move speed, can only perform move actions & may hustle 1 extra hour/CL (3) per day)
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 24 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 14 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 39 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 41 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 24 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 33 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 19 charges
    1x wand of Extended Mount (CL 3; 6 hr duration), 11 charges
    (205 charges total)
    6x scroll of Raging Flame (1 min, all normal fires burn 2x as hot and 2x as bright, deals 2x damage/round; adds +1 damage to magical fire)
    1x Wand of Whispering Wind, 18 charges
    Last edited by ~Corvus~; 2019-01-30 at 06:18 PM.
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  6. - Top - End - #126
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    Pondering the implications of asking the fiends for help, Red-Eye frowns at the belt: Is true, but dealing with them always leaves me wanting for more humans, who seem to be in short supply. I have need of a protege, is there a way of warping one to skavendom? The need for blood is important. Many techniques use tiny amounts. Nezumi blood is not charged right for it.

    Hmm...are you not Nezumi?

    Is Skaven, not Nezumi

    I've lost many memories since my Divine Body's death. Perhaps the knowledge of "Skaven" and how to make them has come with it.

    Will have to rely on offspring to produce protégé, is annoying, takes too much time.

    This sounds like an issue you have with blood and blood magics. Isn't Tun an authority on those subjects?

    Is, but putting all daggers in one claw is bad-dumb

    The Thew remains silent

    You knew how to make quick-loyal spawn Turning living into same, no?

    I've said before that Nezumi breed very quickly and also that the bonds of blood are stronger than many mortals are willing to believe.
    But if you are Skaven and they are Nezumi, and both of you are Ratling, well...I'm not certain what your offspring will become.


    Is way to ensure skaven blood flows true?

    Humans are a deity-created race, and one of their traits is to mate well with other races. There's no way to ensure this same circumstance with other creatures except with divine powers.

    Is way to make copies instead of new spawn? Take mate out of picture? Skaven born in litters, grow up in months, superior to Nezumi

    What would produce this spawn?

    Red-Eye pauses for a while before tentatively answering: Magic...?

    So every few months, new spawn of these Skaven appear, place or destination unknown? These parameters must be clearly defined and understood! This is why, when so many mortals make a Wish, they experience a Rebound.

    Was not Strong, have no contact with females after nursing unless strong, do not know

    So how would these spawn emerge into the world? What is their vessel for arrival?

    Completely out of his depth the Skaven has a momentary bout of confusion: What does boat have to do with litters?

    Vessel. Means of delivering your spawn into this world. Most mortal men take the time to enjoy copulation for what it is, and the females are the vessel for delivering the new life to the world. So what would be your vessel for delivering this new spawn of...Skaven to your world?

    Skaven females is vessel then, is maybe why is kept hidden

    Do you have a Skaven female?

    No, all clan got murdered by Tun and Orusc

    I'm not sure how we're supposed to both conjure a Skaven Female and then have her magically produce offspring without you mating with her. This would be much easier for you if you just enjoyed the mating process, wouldn't it?

    But if spawn is not Skaven, is useless

    It doesn't sound like I can help you any further until you have a clearer idea of this desire

    Have ideas to improve bombs then?

    The Thew remains silent

    Know anything about humans or lizards? Any poisons extra effective?

    Hmm...Lizards are very prone to Scale-rot. It takes about a week, but the disease makes them slough off their skin and then incapable of making a new one

    Is disease or poison?

    It's a disease, but very fast-acting. It takes about 5 days to incubate, and they die within a few days.

    Disease is dangerous, not like poison, don't know how to work with

    It's usually found in foods, fruits mostly, but it can be cured with a Cure Disease spell or the like

    How contagious is it?

    It's spread through the food and it multiplies well if the foods are kept in a damp environment

    Easy to find? Can be made with contagion spell?

    I suspect so. It's not well-known, but easily treatable...at least with magic. The only means of preventing it is through drying foods curing it without a spell is nearly impossible for any single victim.

    Long incubation time and easily recognized, maybe useful, treading on Clan Pestilence grounds, maybe

    The mold that causes it is nearly invisible, and is practically tasteless. It's masked by sweetness, which is why it grows best in fruits. Humans get sick and feel ill if they eat it, but they won't die. Just a few days' rest with water and they're okay.

    Would need to find mould, but will look when hunting, may be useful.

    It's best to spread the mold to the fruit; use a Poison spell on the fruit, giving it Karlama Abscondam...the true name of the mold in question
    the fruit will catch the mold in a few hours, and you have yourself a terrible outbreak.


    days is a long time, should be hours at most

    Suit yourself.

    Is good option, will use if I find their fruits

    They crossed from a desert region. They will almost certainly carry brown, thumb-sized fruits. They have a dry skin but are very sticky. Perfect to poison, as their skin is translucent and they retain moisture extremely well.

    Perfect, now, you know anything about what a Dreamwalker is supposed to do? Is advisor, but is useful?

    The Thew remains impassive, and subsequently refuses to respond to other inquiries. Physically poking the belt, Red-Eye shakes his head and grumbles something about heads and belts.
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  7. - Top - End - #127
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    As the night grows short and he decides to end the lesson, having received more valuable items than the initial expectation of food and drink, Red-Eye confers with the Dreamwalker now assigned to his clan, trying to suss out the temperament and morals of the, potentially, extremely valuable asset he gained:
    "Welcome Dreamwalker, is good to meet and talk, yes-yes, I am Chieftain Red-Eye, you have heard of my wants, but who-what do you want, and what do you offer the Tribe?"

    The Dreamwalker presses her lips to her mouth as she appraises the Skaven in front of her. She thinks for a long time, breathing softly, and then speaks to him with a knowing gaze. "I walk the world of dreams and glean secrets from any whose minds are unguarded... Like yours. I offer powers that Grey Seers only wish they had. I can commune with other Dreamwalkers, and this way, Nezumi tribes stay connected.
    When I have a want, you will know of it, and I will expect to have it fulfilled.


    Suppressing a scowl at the second intrusion into his mind Red-Eye snaps at the Dreamwalker: "And what is your name? I-I have no place for parasites, and no patience for threats."

    "It is good to know you have little patience for threats; it will motivate you to never give me a reason to make them. That will suit our relationship just fine. You may call me 'Wise One' until we are more familiar, just as I shall call you my Chief."

    Narrowing his eyes dangerously, and no longer suppressing the scowl Red-Eye bares his fangs at the female: "You-dreamer is giving me-chief orders? Is Lost-Moor this bold, think spy can take over tribe?"

    She sees Red-Eye struggling with his speech; his opening and closing mouths, his mounting anger, the lack of ego-soothing deference from her. "The Lost Moor wishes to have you as an ally. They wish to be able to help you when you most-need it. If you, Red-Eye, have a Dreamwalker, then this aid can be requested or provided.
    I have enjoyed my work as a Dreamwalker, and I wish to travel far across Rokugan. You are one that will do this. I saw this in you even before you revealed other powers that many may covet.
    You are the chief, and you give others orders. We talk, and from time to time, we reveal ways in which the other might be of benefit. In time we may regard each other as peers, maybe even friends. I will heal your wounded. I will use magic items that might blow up another. I will give you insights into others' lives, and you will benefit, for I will work to help you. "


    Clenching and unclenching his hands Red-Eye looks the Dreamwalker straight into her eyes: "I-I will accept your position as Grey Seer, but you will never question me in public and you will introduce yourself."

    The Wise One nods as she hears this and follows up with "Agreed.
    I will accept your position as my Chief, but you shall make requests of me in public, not orders, unless we are in battle; then I shall follow orders as needed.
    I am a more than capable item user and healer. I will be of great use to you before and after battles, but much less during."


    Visibly calming at the reassurance Red-Eye, now in a much more pleasant tone, reiterates: "This is acceptable Grey Seer, however, your name still cannot be hidden."

  8. - Top - End - #128
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    The Wise One beckons to many in the assembled ratlings, soon to be Red-Eye's warband. "Greetings, all. I am formerly Char-mek-chat, apprentice to the Wise One of the Lost Moor tribe. I hope to serve you well as Chieften Red-Eye's appointed Grey Seer... she pauses for a few moments before concluding "Which is his way of saying Wise One. Good hunting!

    The Nezumi nod appreciably, and as training winds to a close and others start going to bed, Red-Eye, too, starts receiving drop-ins from other tribes to deliver provisions for his expedition. Before he knows it, he's collected four days' rations for two hundred Nezumi.
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  9. - Top - End - #129
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    Tun does not appear right away, but when he does, he appears in his fiendish form, with sallow and swarthy skin, ram's horns on his human head, and arms that are slathered in blood up to his elbows. He drags with him a scaly, human-like female with long corded hair and gemlike, blue eyes that peek out from what seems to be crystalline mask. Now that you are here, Gith, you can pay due the vengeance you wrought on my lair.
    The humanoid, for her part, is silent, likely because of the mask blocking her ability to speak. She does not move: her left arm has been twisted at an impossible angle, and seems to be moving as little as possible to prevent any more damage to her body
    Speak plainly, Red-Eye! I do not have much time here.

    Unnerved at the ability to apparently drag OTHERS through the mirror Red-Eye looks at the fiend varily: "Is safe to speak in front of the human-thing?"

    Tun narrows his silvery eyes to the gith. You won't cause trouble, Malchestrak, will you?
    He makes a subtle motion with his hand holding the gith's arm and her eyes bulge from the mask. She shakes her head with vigour.
    "There, see? Speak, ratling!

    Not trusting the gith-thing one bit Red-Eye grabs his bow: "Can knock out, non-lethal, don't trust, last thing almost got you killed, if it can get into your lair, can get out, specially if it has allies"

    Tun sighs and turns to the Gith. It's your unlucky day, Malchestrak. I had hoped you would be a useful resource for something else, but I suppose you'll just have to go back to where you were and be slaughtered with the rest of your soldiers. It was a terrible idea to lead a troop of others into a den of my brethren.

    The gith struggles in earnest now, regardless that it's causing her great pain, until Tun flicks his other hand and a flaming whip appears. He wraps it around her neck, mutters an incantation, and lets go her arm with his other hand. He takes a stride and a half away and finds a round copper shield of another Nezumi. The flames of the whip make terrible light-plays over its surface, and he thrusts the Gith into the copper portal. As she struggles to hang on, he then conjures a flaming scimitar and hacks at her hands, fingers, feet, whatever she uses to try to stop herself fromg going back to the portal, and then, when she's through, the demon turns to Red-Eye.

    You've interrupted a very delicious slaughter and sacrifice. It better be good..

    "Tribe has grown, 200 recruits, including a dreamwalker, who seems to read minds, will want protection from that, they lack the Skaven blood needed for training, you can help with this, yes-yes? Have been sent to harass an army of human-things with lizard-slaves, need fire that can't be put out to destroy towers, I will be taking much-many prisoners, perhaps even taking slaves as slaves, loss of army will surely make human-things suffer, yes-yes."

    Skaven-blood splicing is beyond my power. You need the blessing of a god or a powerful wish.

    "Have discovered way to make offspring grow fast, no Skaven females though, is problem."

    I have told you it is beyond my power. You are wasting my time. The fiend turns to leave. I might be more free to talk next time. He looks at the shield, which is now melted into slag. He looks around the campsite for another surface.

    "What about the human-things, you want, yes?"
    Red-Eye gently nudges the flesh mirror closer to Tun, not too pleased about the abruptness, but not willing to stand between him and a 'delicious slaughter and sacrifice' either.

    How are you going to capture the humans?

    "New tricks, non-lethal enchantment on arrows, spreading sickness to the lizardmen, an army on the march has water and food, can be poisoned, is like siege, but against sand, will slip into shadows until they can no longer fight, also fiendfire is good for burning large parts of camp, yes-yes?"

    Tun carefully appraises the ratling in front of him. His interest piqued, the fiend considers what's been proposed, and then takes time to digest his question. Fiendfire? What in the world do you mean?

    Tilting his head and looking at the fiend like he is being a bit slow: "Fiendfire, fire that devours and is much-much hard to put out, hungry like pack of starving Skaven"

    Tun's face gives the twitch of recognition the ratling was likely waiting for. He growls, My body betrays me. It's been a very long time since I've been bested by a mortal.

    ...Yes, I know of it. Possessed Hellfire is crude, is hard to restrain, and burn victims' souls from existence. I am not the type of fiend who can wield it, however.


    "If not possessed, normal Hellfire still burns until nothing left to burn, is possible for you, yes-yes?"

    Hellfire is capable fire that's much weaker on the mortal planes; it will damage most things, but unless possessed or controlled, it will do little lasting damage, once put out.

    "Is there type that does not give off light? Cause if burn at night, will be useful."

    The fiend looks bored. I'm sure Darkfire is useful to some mortals, but not to a fiend like me, nor for your purposes. What you're looking for is a consuming flame that will consume an enormous object and humans in a short time. And to boot, you want it lightless.

    What you're going to want is an Elokid spawn from Zionyn, the 663rd layer of the Abyss. But I don't deal with obyriths though. They're old, possessive, and incapable of being tricked.


    "So, is possible? Can this secret be taken?*

    The fiend considers his proposition and takes a deep breath. If you travel there, and if you capture two Elokid spawn and the tentacle of a Laghathi, I will make certain you can get your Possessed Hellfire.

    I can get you there, but...the Abyss has strange workings. You'll need to travel there with another mortal you have a personal and unresolved conflict with.


    "Do they need to be willing? Or alive on the trip back"

    "A willing subject is easier to planeshift, but they do not need to know they will travel with you."

    "Only ones is the group that sent the human-thing assassin, can find again, but would be forced to kill-kill, can use for recruitment maybe, Chokka is good candidate for training stormvermin, can use, how close does Tun need her to be?*

    The fiend chuckles. "She isn't far, and lucky for you, we can bring the spell to her. Now, I only have one chance here to do this right.

    "I need-want a description of the Elokid spawn and the Laghathi, as well as where to find them and specialize ravages to hunt them with."

    The fiend shakes its head.
    "One thing is for sure: the creatures of this land know how to fight Demons. They will have useful items without issue.

    I cannot tell you much of anything beyond those are the creatures you'll need to harvest. There are profane oaths your powers have no levrage over.


    "But can tell some? Is important, for location."

    I can take you and a one other to this place where you can find both your quarries. It shouldn't take more than a month.

    Now...Time has little meaning in the Abyss. This is imperative: When you wish to return, You must desire to return as close to the time you left as possible.
    Last edited by Tjallen; 2019-03-30 at 12:00 PM.

  10. - Top - End - #130
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    Tun looks like he's about to say more, but he shifts himself into what the ratling had originally seen Orusc as: A silver-furred Nezumi, but this one remains armorless. Instead, he has modest brown robes of what might be a monk. Tun becomes quiet and strides away from the slag, picks up Red-Eye's mirror and hands it to him.

    Just about twenty seconds after he'd shifted his form, Chokka herself strides into your private conversation. "What is this? You are consorting with shapeshifters now?

    Tun gives her a frosty appraisal; it helps that, even appearing as a rat, he is half a head taller than her; he uses that to rock back as he speaks and gain a slight bit more height to his stature.You would do well to watch yourself, Chokka-Kam. You've already said enough to embarass yourself for one night, and you deliver accusations at those very much your elder?

    Chokka's nose reddens and she stammers, "B-but-tha--
    "How long have you been in your station since your demotion?"
    Caught off guard, she splutters, "kkhh--rrk--klrrk--what?!?"
    You used to be a great warrior, Chokka, full of power and vengeance for our enemies, before your...unfortunate incident.

    Chokka takes a step back. "How do you know of this? Why are you letting him know of this?" She casts a withering look to Red-Eye to show her anger that he knows even a little of her embarrassing past.

    "Clan-chiefs talk, but we do not break secrets...I did not reveal your secret any more than has been revealed today already. " He pauses for her to register confusion, and as she opens her mouth to speak again, he finishes her question before she asks: "Lost Moor. I sent my Speaker to the ceremony here, because I needed to rest from our journey here. I roused myself recently, and have watched these new promising recruits, and I've been having a discussion with this chief here.

    He has quite the interesting tale about his former tribe. Now, before I lose track, I have a request of you, Chokka, to accompany Chief Red-Eye on what sounds like an important quest.


    She only raises an eyebrow this time, and Tun continues, "You'll need to retrieve your old weapon. The one that belongs to your family."

    At this her eyes bulge, and it looks like the ratling hovers between rage and a her desire for what he speaks. She asks levelly, "What do you mean?"

    "The one your...parents gave you." They share a knowing look, one that holds a depth of knowledge beyond what Red-Eye knows, and she nods her head. "

    Only because your daughter spared my life and I owe her a favor. I will do this to fulfill my blood debt to her."

    "Excellent! I'll go tell her myself. Now, will the two of you do me the courtesy of taking me back to the citadel?"

    The Nezumi grumbles, but nods her head. As the two of you hoist the ratling onto your shoulders for the journey, Tun inserts thoughts into Red-Eye's mind. I have little time until I must leave, so we have no time for surprises or entanglements. The chieftan to the Lost Moor is still there; I shall have to direct us around where they are.
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  11. - Top - End - #131
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    Suppressing an evil grin Red-Eye simply lets Tun lead the conversation. His quiet is enforced as they are forced to lift the shapeshifting demon, unused to physical labor.
    'Is good, must hurry to sacrifice and slaughter, tell about demotion and accident, sounds amusing and useful.'

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    The journey only takes a few minutes, and Tun levels his gaze sternly at the guards to the citadel and shakes his head, giving them the impression he's not in a mood to be trifled with. They give you all odd looks, but say nothing. Excellent! Now, we'll need to take the long way; my Speaker will pester me again about making more arrangements for our return journey and other expeditions, when he's more than capable of handling those concerns himself. We'll be up until the crack of dawn, but I will want sleep.

    Chokka snorts at this, but says little, and lets herself be steered away from what would likely have been the most direct path. You all manage your way to a barely-attended area of the citadel, down some stairs, and into a store room.

    Chokka lets down her burden unceremoniously, and fervently picks at the lock, then realizes that she actually has the key on her neck. She and Tun wander into the room, and she looks disapprovingly as he grasps an item of her own, while she brandishes her spear. "That's not yours to take, chieftan!"

    Nor is that spear, but you're taking it.

    Because it's my family's and not this citadel's. As Guard-Captain, I cannot let you take that staff. I'm sorry. She holds out her hands, and surprisingly, Tun sighs, hands over the item, and glares at her as she locks the door, quickly goes to her own room to gather a few items of choice, and returns to say she's ready to leave. Tun nods, and uncharacteristic of him, he does not ask for a sacrifice. He asks, instead, for your hands, and with them all interlocked you all exit the floor.

    You're in what can only be felt as a between-space, an area where time and space stretch impossibly in a thousand directions and once, and you're soon shunted through a barrier that looks like melting lead with the impressions of screaming faces, and then past images that very nearly warp the mind.
    Spoiler: Into Jigoku
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    You arrive in a blasted landscape with huge boulders with sandstone-like texture and hardness but they're only shades and tints of red. You can hear the mild buzz of chittering far away, and Chokka whirls about, asking where you are. "We are in Jigoku, Chokka, where Red-Eye has chosen to take his Hunt.

    You never told me that bit! Wha--ring me back with you! No one travels here; it's beyond insane!!

    But hear how your voice is lighter, Chokka? How the sadness you've felt is slipping away at the prospect of another hunt? Do not worry about your fate back home; if all goes well, your journey here will pass little time to Ningen-do. Ah... Tun pulls a few..well they look like pants, but they have odd clasps on them. You must wear these. Ningen-do is a jealous realm, and it will pull you back if you let it. You may take these on loan. You just put them on...and turn the key here in the other pocket here, and...now this it important!
    When you have finished your task and must leave this realm, undo the pocket and focus on returning as close to the moment you left!! I will likely be somewhere where I can get some sleep, so just find your Hunt Giver as best you can.


    You're not the Hunt Giver?

    No, but I am a means to his ends. With this, the Nezumi-Tun vanishes in a pop. The air here is warm with a palpable humidity, but other than the insane boulderfield around you and the distant chittering, you two are very much alone.
    Last edited by ~Corvus~; 2019-04-25 at 04:23 PM.
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  13. - Top - End - #133
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    Default Re: Rokugan In the Shadows - Into the Shinomen

    Red-Eye is present in a chamber. Chokka is there, as is the real Clan-chief to Lost Moor. Ah, there you are, young one. Chokka has told us how you've been stricken mad, correct?
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    Narrowing his eyes at Chokka in displeasure, he answers the Clan-Chief: "In the pursuit of securing parts for a weapon, I triggered a vision of a deity of madness before it's moment of apotheosis. There were consequences, magically enforced insanity as well as what I suspect is a magical disease as well. Spells of protection seems to keep the effects at bay."

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    The clan chief nods. "An unfortunate turn. We may be capable of turning our spirit protections' to aid you, but this is a temporary measure only.

    Chokka clears her throat. Clan chief, Red-Eye and I have much to discuss ourselves, and it is, after all, late. Perhaps we can discuss this in the morning? The chief nods and excuses herself from the room.

    Chokka turns to Red-Eye and gives him a look with one eyebrow and a little swing in her hips. "Do you always take your tasks so seriously? Are you really so dedicated to your word that you'd risk your life simply to complete what many might assume should be impossible? Not all could be so dedicated.
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    Agreeing with the Chief, Red-Eye notes with some frustration: "Will look into more permanent solution, temporary must be enough for now."

    As the door closes and he is left with Chokka waits for her to speak as he picks out a piece of bread and starts eating absently as she questions his dedication.

    Deciding upon a choice of action, divine power infuses him as he answers: "Enemies are many, weapons must be found-invented. A test for you as well, loyal-strong Chokka, worth more than weapon, want you to train elite soldiers, hunt champions. The human-things must fall, I-we will rise. Death is failure, I will not fail-die."

    Spoiler: Stuff!
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    Activating Glibness, rolling bluff (1d20+41)[44]

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    Chokka is taken in by the softness of his words. We can train many more than just those soldiers in good time. I had...anticipated your desire to train more recruits, so I had taken the time you'd been absent us here to gather more Nezumi. There's a Drilling Courtyard nearby; we'll be there.

    Chokka makes her exit from the room. The fortress is plain but comforting in color; a soft and light brown, well-packed earth reinforced by vines that seem grown to provide subtle, powerful natural structure. Chokka shouts at others, and soon others enthusiastically shout as they perform the drills nearby. Their commotion is moderate, and it makes a decent cover for any conversation.
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    "Absence? How long?" Red-Eye asks upon hearing of the time missed.

    Following Chokka he remarks upon the organic nature of the walls: "Vines by druids? Flammable? Soldiers trained by you, as strong-loyal?

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    I returned almost immediately after we left; your absence took thirty minutes' time. This is the unpredictable nature of Jigoku; it also seems the nature of your magical protection holds steadfast. When asked about the flammability of the roots, she replies, "Grown by shamans. Perhaps they're flammable, but with so much earth around them, they would produce more smoke than flame. Feel them; they are alive. She turns her attention back to the troops being drilled and nods with approval. She gives them several new movements for them to make and practice, and then dismisses herself from Red-Eye's company to walk amongst those doing the exercises.
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    Mentally counting the minutes until the protection runs out, Red-Eye simply fades from view after nodding at Chokka's explanation.
    Quickly and quietly he moves up the walls and orients himself in order to find his way back to the camp and the Grey Seer, as well as mentally mapping out the fortress should i become necessary to defend, or attack.

    As he gets his way back he calls for the Grey Seer to meet him in the tent, and immediately sets about calling Tun into being.
    Last edited by Tjallen; 2019-05-02 at 03:44 PM.

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    Red-Eye makes his way out of the temple without issue. He makes it to the camp without issue, but feels the pressure of the madness exerting its force against his mind. His calculations are precise, on the assumption that time for him is subjective and not relative, else he'd have
    Spoiler: Time Crunch
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    NB: In the Human Realm, Red-Eye's Glibness will not protect him or give him extra time to act.

    Travel from the Laghathi to the Hive took 33 minutes;
    we take an extra 1 minute for all actions from there to his return;
    it took 10 minutes to travel with others to the ceremony grounds; it takes him 5 minutes to travel from the fortress to the Ceremonial grounds;

    we are left with 21 minutes.


    The Grey Seer for Lost Moor looks up at the Ratling's arrival and follows his beckoning. Tun arrives in a blue noble outfit, with the same elegant and haughty-looking man as before. He sees the seer and the two sneer at each other. They speak at the same time, both demanding the same information from Red-Eye: "Who is this one?"

    The silver-eyed one, in response, reaches out to the Seer, and plunges his thumbs into the Seer's eyes, then clasps his lips closed as the ratling tries to scream. Tun leans in to the Seer and speaks to it, "Rejoice, ratling one. I do this so you will appreciate your 'gift' to its fullest extent. Now, quiet, SHHHhhhhh, quiet or you will die a terrible death." The Grey Seer, shaken for once, fumbles for a spot on the floor and casts several spells upon itself, healing its (now) weeping and wrecked eyes.

    ...Red-Eye? The secrecy of my identity is paramount. I must not be known widely. Now...I hope this time you have what you need?
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    Red-Eye looks at Tun with clear distaste for the maiming of his Grey Seer:
    "Grey Seer, this is guiding spirit of clan. Spirit, this is the Grey Seer, will be in charge when I am gone. Is very important to keep secret, must be attuned, price low, only eyes."

    The Grey Seer scoffs at Red-Eye. "You expect me to believe that the spirit of our clan is a human?!? Why--"

    Tun steps forward, nudges the seer with his feet, and, swallowing, the Nezumi quiets herself.

    "Thought you had sight? Is not human, is spirit, violent one. Hunt was good, witnessed a God, before ascension, brought Grey seer to cast protection, madness is close, overwhelming."
    As he explains Red-Eye fishes out the pots of spawn, the tentacle, and the inoculation arm taken from the first Ekolid he slew.
    "Laghathi, was unprepared."

    Tun's eyes go wide at the sight of a potful of Ekolid spawn. He takes off the lid, and a spawn jumps out. He quickly puts back the lid, crushing other spawn's legs that tried to escape, then squashes the one spawn. He conjures flames, and burns the spawn's body until there's nothing left but charred cinders. "Did you bring back any more of them? Is there any other container?"

    "Yes, another pot, is more than two spawn, is good, yes? Protection is running out, you have trinket for protection or removing madness, yes?"

    Tun looks intensely at Red-Eye. "Give it here, NOW, or there is no deal! Those insects will rip apart an entire plane. They are not to be played with!"

    Red-Eye simply shakes his head: "Is not here, protection runs out soon, why Grey Seer is here , can't get in time, is safely in haversack."

    Tun turns to the Grey Seer. With a voice with the menace of great heat behind it, he tells the seer, "Your friend here possess the spawn of creatures called Ekolid. They possess the purest taint of Jigoku in them, and they are growing, right now. If they grow for long enough, they will spread Jigoku everywhere they can. "

    "W-What do you want me to do about it?"

    "Shield him! Protect him from his madness!"

    The Seer spreads its hands and casts the right spell, or so it seems. It feels...almost right again in Red-Eye's mind, but he can still feel the pressure. A bit unnerved, Red-Eye simply smiles: "Better, still there, but better, be alive when back."
    With that, he takes off in search of Chokka, to retrieve the pot with Ekolids. The Skaven manages to reach Chokka swiftly. He secures the haversack--and jar-- and returns promptly.

    Pulling out the Jar and presenting it to Tun, the ratling makes sure the Grey Seer is still alive before addressing the fiend once again: "Still need permanent solution, but here is last of Ekolids." Tun, finally mollified by the efforts the Skaven went through, calms down and passes the second jar into the (provided) mirror and then, as the mirror stretches, retrieves...the body of a unicorn. They float on air as if enchanted, but they bear the marks of brutal treatment. He speaks a word and one floats closer to the ground. Tun gets to work.

    With fingers whose nails are razor-sharp, he quickly cuts the tendons to the legs of the creature, rotating it efficiently as he works. He then rips each off and arrays them into four points, as a compass, hoof out. He lets the blood drip into perfect circles as he arranges them. The blood is a mix of deep red and silver; each color seems to duel the other for display, causing a sanguine shimmer without a direct sun. He first severs the unicorn's tail and, taking the strands, lays them among the blood. As each strand goes down, he traces symbols with the blood; they, in turn, conceal as if Tun managed to barely heat them. It takes longer than expected, over an hour, to array every single unicorn hair, but the results bring a smile to his face.

    Seven wide arcs, flanked by intricate symbols, span the severed legs. A single section of the array remains undecorated, but the center has a pool of blood, contained by the creature's hairs, and he now dips the remaining unicorn's hair into the blood. He washes it with delicacy, until, oddly, the tail has absorbed all of the blood!

    He walks to Red-Eye, who notices the silver-eyed man's clothes remain--oddly--clean of his bloody work. He tells the Skaven to be still, and paints symbols over his armor, his fur, his face, until the entirety of his body has been inscribed with bloody symbols. Tun now directs Red-Eye into the center of the circle, following the single section that's been unmarked, with instructions to not move. He fills in the last section, and as it's completed, each of the symbols glow.

    Red-Eye feels his blood pulsing, shifting, moving, and it's as if great heat radiates from every part of his body, from the inside. Tun shouts at him to remain as still as he can, and he feels himself lose consciousness.

    Tun stands over him. "Good, you're up. It's done. Your body is now prepared." Shaking his head a bit, Red-Eye looks warily at the fiend as he stands up: "What did it do, prepared for what?" "You will be able to sire children, soon. And I see your mind more suitably prepared than I could hope; you will need to do very little work. The next time you wake up, you'll have an army capable of making a credible threat to the humans. Are you ready for that?" Red-Eye looks at Tun as his hand grasps the bow at his back: "No, am RED-EYE, not cow-thing, will not give up mind for this, will not give Laghathi purebred."

    Tun furrows his brow. He uses a bit of divination magic and, after concentrating a little bit, he raises his eyebrows. "Ah. That...we can cleanse as well. No, you will make healthy-strong ratlings, half Nezumi, half...Skaven. Immune to the Taint, capable of bearing the powerful Skaven bloodline...But I warn you, Red-Eye, this disease is powerful. It absorbs magic, blocks attempts to remove it through spells. The more magic used on you or by you, the more difficult it is to remove. Wait too long, and it will destroy you. You have done better than I could have expected, and I could offer you an item to block your madness...but it would not remove your Disease. In all honesty, it would continuously make your disease worse when it breaks."

    Closely studying Tun while grasping his bow, Red-Eye looks close to furious at another of the Laghathis curses being explained and between clenched teeth over a few dozen seconds grounds out: "Cure disease, then talk about other thing."

    The silver-eyed man doesn't miss a beat. "I agree. You have a deal." He steps up into the air stays up with magical heat that only seems to exist from his feet upwards. He floats to Red-Eye and presses five fingers of one hand upon his chest, careful to bend his long fingers to precise points. The ratling's body shifts and he feels...cleaner, as if he's been purged of many foul influences...and then pressure in the ratling's head crashes into him. He has a moment to recognize he's been tricked; not accepting this betrayal, Red-Eye shoots a single arrow almost instantaneously at the heart of the fiend, coated in magic, poison and twice-over anathema enchantments, hate and spite fueling the ratlings actions, a smile evident as the weakness of poison is exploited double by the ravage feeding on personality as well as evil nature. The man, whose form bleeds back into his true fiendish form, a genderless creature with powerful, wiry limbs and large ram-horns its head, chokes on the arrows that pierce its throat.

    There are snippets that reach him: the Grey Seer fleeing from Tun; Chokka tying him to a bed; warm, wet and fleshy feelings around his midsection he can't quite understand; the faces of many female Nezumi tending to him, telling him how strong and powerful he is, how they admire him, how they pledge themselves to his cause....Many times the faces of the Nezumi are coupled with the strange, fleshy feelings, but they are only snippets in a whirlwind of chaos.

    Mostly, Red-Eye is lost, and the tiny moments of recognition are blessings, infuriating yet welcomed. Try and struggle as he might in his own mind, there is no end to the unstoppable torrent that berates his consciousness. There are a few moments of lucidity wherein he asks where he is, and, realizing he's unable to cast spells so bound, asks to be untied, but he is lost amidst the swarm of shapes and sounds before he can be freed. It is a lonely existence, mostly, but he does get a feeling he is safe...for now.

    ~~~~~ ~~~~~
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