(7:16:11 PM) * * * Miriam boots Rivet into character.
(7:16:28 PM) * * * Vargas is currently taking stock of his notes, and the formula he and the other 4 scholars have been working on for the last few days.
(7:16:38 PM) Rivet is now known as Serribon
(7:17:01 PM) * * * Vargas says to the others, “Bre, professors, I feel a whump coming.”
(7:17:13 PM) * * * Vargas turns on his detect magic, and braces to poof.
(7:17:21 PM) * * * Serribon is by his tent, hunched over a steaming mug of the local stimulant brew
(7:17:31 PM) * * * Miriam is currently urinating. It’s early morning, and she’s doing her morning routine before going out to work.
(7:17:46 PM) Vargas: As for you folks, you get feel the sensation of a strong breeze.
(7:17:59 PM) Vargas: Really?
(7:18:18 PM) Vargas: TMI
(7:18:33 PM) * * * Miriam was going for darker and edgier.
(7:19:00 PM) Vargas: At least she never whumped during mid sex with her slave master.
(7:19:44 PM) Miriam: Very fortunate for her.
(7:19:46 PM) Serribon: (You just had to give him ideas.)
(7:19:49 PM) Vargas: The sensation of the whump is sort of like falling asleep this time. You fade, and you’re not exactly sure what happens when. And then you are awake on your back in a patch of tall mountain grasses.
(7:19:54 PM) Miriam: Mid coitus, sir. Mid coitus. Propriety, sir.
(7:20:37 PM) * * * Vargas groans. “Oh, that never gets easier.”
(7:20:59 PM) * * * Miriam is awake on her back in a patch of tall mountain grasses. She blinks, and then ensures that her dignity is secure as she sits up and looks around.
(7:21:23 PM) * * * Serribon spills his kaf. “GAH!”
(7:22:03 PM) * * * Serribon springs up and tries to shake off the hot liquid.
(7:22:12 PM) Vargas: The patch of grass is next to an old abandoned ruin on the side of a mountain. It is stone structure carved into the face of the rock suited to serve as a refuge for travelers on an switchback trail that is now overgrown.
(7:22:55 PM) Vargas: The green, grey, and white spine of a mountain range is on the far side of a blue and green valley below.
(7:22:56 PM) Miriam: Are we all together?
(7:23:00 PM) Vargas: (aye)
(7:23:13 PM) * * * Vargas struggles to a seated position.
(7:23:26 PM) Vargas: “I hope I don’t end up senile one day from this.”
(7:23:43 PM) Vargas: “Everyone okay?”
(7:23:45 PM) * * * Vargas looks around.
(7:24:04 PM) Miriam: “Who’s here? Where are we?”
(7:24:10 PM) Serribon: “What the hell?!? There wasn’t even a whump this time…”
(7:24:33 PM) * * * Miriam curls her legs under her and carefully stands up, surveying their surroundings.
(7:24:59 PM) Vargas: “Hello Miriam, Serribon.”
(7:25:09 PM) * * * Vargas rubs his eyes and stands.
(7:25:18 PM) Serribon: “Yes. Hello. Where are we?”
(7:25:37 PM) Vargas: “I’m not sure. I don’t recognize these mountains.”
(7:26:18 PM) * * * Miriam sits down again. “Are the others here somewhere, do you think?”
(7:26:39 PM) * * * Vargas looks down into the valley. “Maybe.”
(7:27:27 PM) Miriam: “Should we look for them? Or make some kind of signal?”
(7:27:27 PM) Vargas: “For what it’s worth, I think I may be close to way to predict whumps.”
(7:27:52 PM) Vargas: “Perhaps we can light a fire in this shelter.”
(7:28:03 PM) * * * Vargas pulls out his signal whistle, and toots loudly.
(7:28:54 PM) Serribon: “We might as well. If they are downslope, it should be easier for them to see us up here than for us to spot them down there.”
(7:28:57 PM) Vargas: “Usually at least one of us is missing.”
(7:29:33 PM) * * * Vargas creates a light and heads into the ruined shelter.
(7:29:41 PM) * * * Miriam listens, but hears no response. “I guess a fire it is, then. I don’t see anywhere else to go, anyway.”
(7:29:50 PM) Miriam: “Do either of you have firemaking equipment?”
(7:30:40 PM) Vargas: “I do.”
(7:30:53 PM) Serribon: “Yes.” He pats his belt pouch.
(7:30:54 PM) Vargas: “I think we can use some of these vines, grasses, and roots for a fire.”
(7:31:11 PM) Miriam: “Can you make a smoky fire? Maybe they’ll see it and come investigate.”
(7:31:37 PM) Serribon: “If that is all we have to burn, it should be quite smoky.”
(7:32:17 PM) Miriam: “Will it? I don’t know these things.”
(7:32:30 PM) Exterminatus left the room (quit: Ping timeout: 180 seconds).
(7:32:31 PM) * * * Vargas pulls out his dagger and starts cutting.
(7:34:42 PM) * * * Miriam would help, but she doesn’t have a fancy dagger.
(7:34:59 PM) * * * Vargas pulls out his backup dagger. “Want one?”
(7:35:38 PM) Serribon: “Better get it back before she goes home.”
(7:35:54 PM) * * * Miriam snorts.
(7:36:03 PM) * * * Miriam takes the dagger and helps Vargas cut combustibles.
(7:36:10 PM) * * * Serribon gets out a knife and helps, too.
(7:36:37 PM) * * * Vargas just shrugs and cuts. “What have you guys been up to?”
(7:36:52 PM) * * * Miriam starts to laugh.
(7:36:58 PM) Miriam: “Cutting vegetation, mostly. You?”
(7:37:30 PM) Serribon: “Road trip.”
(7:37:34 PM) Vargas: “Trimming grasses. Research. Getting robbed. Small revelations.”
(7:37:51 PM) Miriam: “Robbed, eh? Anything valuable?”
(7:38:01 PM) Exterminatus [General_Ha@pool-71-126-78-63.phlapa.east.verizon.net] entered the room.
(7:38:09 PM) * * * Vargas sighs. “Yeah. Somebody stole Barney.”
(7:39:06 PM) Miriam: “Barney? Is that a pet? Some sort of magical wizard pet?”
(7:39:50 PM) * * * Vargas shakes his head. “I’m not sure I ever had the chance to show you. Barney is a machine of some sort. Or part of a machine I found on the bottom of the sea.”
(7:40:08 PM) Vargas: “I called it Barney because it was covered in barnacles, and it took months to clean off.”
(7:40:44 PM) Miriam: “Huh… So someone stole part of a broken machine which you don’t know what it does?”
(7:41:13 PM) Serribon: “Call out the guard.”
(7:41:34 PM) Vargas: “Yeah. It was a very interesting piece. It’s ancient. It’s made of metals nobody has cataloged before.”
(7:41:49 PM) Vargas: “And the gear work is absolutely incredible.”
(7:42:22 PM) Miriam: “Well, do you think you’ll find it again?”
(7:43:03 PM) Vargas: “Probably. Only so many people knew it existed, or would have an interest in it. It was the only thing stolen from my safe. Nothing else was touched.”
(7:43:36 PM) Miriam: “I see…”
(7:43:52 PM) * * * Miriam looks over at Serribon. “And what about you, Serri? You don’t look well.”
(7:44:58 PM) Serribon: “Rough night. And then I get burned. So, yes. I have been better.”
(7:45:16 PM) Vargas: “I’m sorry to hear that. Poor sleep?”
(7:46:21 PM) * * * Vargas eventually lights a fire with all the cut vegetation.
(7:46:38 PM) Serribon: “Hm”
(7:47:17 PM) Vargas: “I could share some tea recipes if you are interested.”
(7:47:23 PM) Vargas: “They might help you sleep”
(7:47:33 PM) Vargas: “Well, hmm.”
(7:47:45 PM) Vargas: “Might be hard to get the same herbs. But I have some with me.”
(7:47:52 PM) Serribon: “Not being attacked in the middle of the night would help more.”
(7:48:07 PM) Vargas: “An assassin?”
(7:48:13 PM) * * * Miriam chuckles again—and then blinks. “You were attacked? Have you gotten yourself into trouble agan?”
(7:49:14 PM) Serribon: “I have no idea. It was invisible. And apparently intangible except when it was striking me.”
(7:49:32 PM) Vargas: “Strange.”
(7:49:40 PM) Vargas: “Was it a ghost?”
(7:49:58 PM) Serribon: “It did not say.”
(7:50:13 PM) * * * Vargas snickers. “You have a strange sense of humor, Serribon.”
(7:50:16 PM) Miriam: “What did it say?”
(7:50:35 PM) Serribon: “Nothing. It just growled alot.”
(7:50:49 PM) Vargas: “Did you kill it?”
(7:51:00 PM) Miriam: “You’re making this up, aren’t you.”
(7:51:30 PM) * * * Vargas looks at Miriam, “I’m not sure he’s capable of joking.”
(7:51:57 PM) Miriam: “He is. His sense of humor just comes at the expense of the rest of the universe.”
(7:52:00 PM) Serribon: “I doubt it. When I pushed it off of me, it seemed to go away. And that’s what the patrolman said, too. But no. Whatever it was was there.”
(7:52:32 PM) Miriam: “Evidence?”
(7:53:58 PM) * * * Vargas performs the famous head tilt. “Could you ask the rod where our friends are?”
(7:53:59 PM) Serribon: “I was awake at the time and damaged my tent in the struggle. Then spent over an hour repairing it. It may have been a phantasm of some sort. But I do not know enough about magics to say for certain.”
(7:54:52 PM) Miriam: “So your only evidence you created. Are you sure it was not a dream? Dreams can seem waking.”
(7:55:48 PM) Serribon: “I would have to find the patrolman again and confirm our conversation from that night.”
(7:56:28 PM) Serribon: “And, I could – if I had it with me. I had no warning of this trip, and my pack is at camp.”
(7:56:48 PM) Miriam: “I’m not saying you dreamed him too. Just that perhaps you had a nightmare that set you to fighting your bedroll. It seems no one of us has lived well since this… curse began.”
(7:58:15 PM) Vargas: “Hmm.”
(7:58:27 PM) Vargas: “Serribon has been hunting faethings.”
(7:58:34 PM) Serribon: “But, yes, I was awake the whole time. Other than the invisible presence, everything else was the same. I am not familiar enough with the area to have fabricated it precisely in my dreams.”
(7:58:38 PM) Vargas: “It’s possible a spirit thing might hunt him.”
(7:58:52 PM) Vargas: “But a dream is at least just as likely.”
(7:59:04 PM) Miriam: “Wait, you’re doing what? Did I know this? You’re hunting fairies?”
(7:59:29 PM) Vargas: “Kinderfaeries at least.”
(8:00:03 PM) Serribon: “Yes, that is the task the templars have given me. I found and killed one in the northern wilderness some months ago. I am presently at the southern front looking to do the same.”
(8:01:26 PM) Miriam: “Fairies. As in, the wild spirits who steal children from their beds and places hexes and curses on men. You’re hunting them? No wonder you’re ill. Why on earth would you take such a mad quest?”
(8:02:00 PM) Serribon: “Like you, I have little choice in the tasks I am assigned.”
(8:02:42 PM) Miriam: “I suppose so.”
(8:02:56 PM) Miriam: “And what of the others? Are they still alive?”
(8:03:19 PM) Vargas: “Everyone is still alive as best I know.”
(8:03:53 PM) Miriam: “Something of a miracle that they are.”
(8:04:05 PM) Vargas: “Though I suspect Ibram has been getting in trouble with mercenary work on the side.”
(8:04:19 PM) Serribon: “I was with Cassandra, Ibram, and Hisham on my last whump. We had gone back to the Isle of Paloon and became embroiled in some local politics.”
(8:04:42 PM) Vargas: “The Isle of Paloon? Isn’t that the place I never end up going to?”
(8:04:55 PM) Vargas: “Ghost ship? Mines?”
(8:05:26 PM) Miriam: “I remember the ghost ship. And the tunnels. The minotaur, yes?”
(8:05:45 PM) Serribon: “Yes. Though this time it was a lot of wandering around aimlessly.”
(8:06:05 PM) Serribon: “And then Ibram volunteered us to take custody of an old man being exiled from the island.”
(8:06:27 PM) Miriam: “Ibram is a font of wisdom and sound decision-making.”
(8:06:42 PM) Vargas: “Indeed.”
(8:06:54 PM) * * * Vargas starts making some tea for Serribon. “Miriam, would you like some tea?”
(8:07:08 PM) Miriam: “I suppose.”
(8:07:11 PM) Serribon: “He was the only one who could understand the dwarf in the bar. Needless to say, we will not be relying on his negotiation efforts in the future.”
(8:07:26 PM) Miriam: We have crafted a signal smoke fire, then. 10 XP to each of us.
(8:07:27 PM) Serribon: “Or, at least, not unsupervised.”
(8:07:45 PM) Vargas: “I think that is a wise sentiment.”
(8:08:05 PM) Miriam: “What dwarf?”
(8:09:16 PM) Miriam: (Heh, space turbines.)
(8:09:58 PM) Serribon: “A pirate or other rogue trader of some sort. Corbec apparently heard him speaking Herz, and decided that he must be the one we were meant to meet.”
(8:10:21 PM) Miriam: “Ah.”
(8:10:32 PM) Vargas: “What else do you know about this island? Maybe I can find it in my time.”
(8:12:01 PM) * * * Miriam looks to Serribon.
(8:12:46 PM) Serribon: “Not much. When we were in the mines, the supervisor we spoke with suggested that his masters traded with Andropolis. Our latter-day visits are, apparently sometime roughly in your era, if there are people speaking your language.”
(8:13:14 PM) Vargas: “Hmm.”
(8:13:27 PM) Miriam: “Have you all… have you been having a lot of adventures without me?”
(8:13:51 PM) Serribon: “Not terribly many, I don’t think.”
(8:14:01 PM) Vargas: “I have not seen you in a few whumps, Miriam. So I think you have missed a few.”
(8:14:40 PM) * * * Miriam strokes her lips.
(8:15:09 PM) * * * Vargas finishes his lavender tea. “Would either of you like a tiny bit of honey to sweeten it?”
(8:15:16 PM) * * * Miriam nods.
(8:15:33 PM) Serribon: “No, thank you.”
(8:16:06 PM) Miriam: “How do you deal with it?” She looks from one man to the other. “I mean, this is so… beyond imagination, when you think about it. Minotaurs? Ghost ships? Time travel! To say nothing of the greater horrors we’ve found. How do you all not go mad?”
(8:16:47 PM) * * * Vargas serves his improvised adventurer tea.
(8:16:48 PM) Serribon: “I am not sure you can say that we haven’t.”
(8:17:20 PM) Vargas: “I’m certainly going to sound insane why I say this, but hear me out.”
(8:17:45 PM) * * * Miriam turns her eyes from Serribon to Vargas.
(8:18:46 PM) Vargas: “Despite the fact that it has nearly killed me multiple times. Despite the fact it tortures us, in my own way I survive it by embracing it. I am a wizard. Knowledge is my passion. And through these trips I’ve learned things lost to my people for thousands of years. It is an opportunity that most wizards only wish they have, and swear they’d die for.”
(8:19:11 PM) * * * Vargas taps his head, and spins his finger. “Coo coo.”
(8:19:33 PM) Vargas: “That’s how I cope.”
(8:19:54 PM) * * * Miriam permits herself half a smile. “And between these shifts? You just live your life? You, Serribon? You just got about your daily business?”
(8:20:12 PM) * * * Vargas lets Serribon answer first.
(8:21:24 PM) * * * Serribon shrugs, “I know a man who can make light shine from his hands. And a woman who can heal wounds by singing at you. And I’ve killed an invisible creature with my bare hands – honestly, there is too much about this world that makes little to know sense, I cannot be bothered to get hung up on any one odd occurance.”
(8:23:17 PM) Miriam: “And the constant threat of death is no discomfort to you. The knowledge that at any moment you may be thrown into the jaws of terror.”
(8:23:33 PM) Vargas: “Scares me shitless.”
(8:23:39 PM) * * * Vargas sips his tea.
(8:24:20 PM) Miriam: “And that’s it? Damn it, that’s not enough. It’s not enough for you to just say you’re terrified and then drink tea!”
(8:24:20 PM) Serribon: “I am a warrior – every day is like that. What does it matter whether it is at the end of a blade or some acid-spewing abomination?”
(8:24:38 PM) * * * Miriam glances at Serribon and then sits back, looking down at her drink.
(8:24:46 PM) Serribon: “I would be no less dead.”
(8:25:32 PM) Miriam: She shakes her head. “What about the rest of us? I’m not a warrior. I’m a girl. I don’t…” She raises a hand to her nose and mouth, pausing for a moment. “I don’t want to die.”
(8:26:31 PM) * * * Vargas ponders for a moment over his tea. He makes a hand gesture at Serribon that seems to imply he should allow her to continue.
(8:26:36 PM) Miriam: (As if millions of voices cried out, and then suddenly were silent. But then I realize this time it was the Death Star, so that’s ok.)
(8:27:01 PM) Serribon: (Also, I was already dead myself, so fuck ‘em.)
(8:27:10 PM) Miriam: (Heh.)
(8:27:39 PM) * * * Miriam looks from one to the other of her companions and then lowers her eyes and raises her hand to conceal her tears.
(8:27:48 PM) Miriam: “I’m sorry,” she says.
(8:28:16 PM) Vargas: “No, don’t apologize.”
(8:28:31 PM) Serribon: “Not many people * want * to die. But death and disaster lurk around every corner. You can worry about it constantly, or just accept that fact and get on with it.”
(8:29:24 PM) * * * Miriam wipes her cheek. “Get on with what?” she asks of the ground in front of her.
(8:29:46 PM) Serribon: “Whatever else you would rather be doing.”
(8:30:34 PM) * * * Miriam frowns.
(8:31:04 PM) * * * Vargas stirs his tea. “I just keep myself really busy. Work lets me do that. It lets me look past my dread and fear.”
(8:31:06 PM) * * * Vargas leans in.
(8:31:41 PM) Vargas: “I suppose I’m just not as good at expressing my feelings.”
(8:33:08 PM) Vargas: “Miriam, do you have any family?”
(8:33:35 PM) Vargas: “I apologize if I already asked, and forgot. I’m a doofus.”
(8:33:42 PM) * * * Miriam looks up. “I… well, yes, everyone comes from somewhere, right?”
(8:34:38 PM) Vargas: “Have you seen them recently?”
(8:36:28 PM) * * * Miriam smiles. “No. I haven’t.”
(8:37:10 PM) Vargas: “Maybe you should consider giving them a visit? I always feel better visiting my grandfather.”
(8:37:53 PM) Miriam: “Sure. I’ll do that.”
(8:38:31 PM) Miriam: As long as he’s known her, Serribon would have gotten the impression that home is the last place she would ever want to go. She ran away for a reason.
(8:38:37 PM) Serribon: “There should only be a few more weeks left in your sentence. It isn’t an impossibility.”
(8:38:55 PM) Vargas: “Oh, that’s right. What will you do when you are free?”
(8:39:33 PM) * * * Miriam takes a deep breath. “I don’t know. Go somewhere, I suppose.”
(8:41:31 PM) Vargas: “Maybe you should go on a vacation. Take some time to think things over and relax? Visit some hot springs?”
(8:41:51 PM) Miriam: “Hot whats?”
(8:41:59 PM) Vargas: “Hot springs.”
(8:42:11 PM) Miriam: “What springs?”
(8:42:22 PM) Vargas: “They are pools of water heated by pockets of heat in the ground.”
(8:42:33 PM) Miriam: (Darn it! I needed one more to finish the joke.)
(8:42:35 PM) Vargas: “It’s like an eternal hot path the size of a pool.”
(8:43:00 PM) Miriam: “A hot bath. How hot? Is it pleasant?”
(8:43:35 PM) Vargas: “Ooooh, it’s fantastic. You shouldn’t sit in them for more than an hour, but it is just so relaxing.”
(8:44:05 PM) Miriam: “Where do you find these things?”
(8:44:35 PM) Serribon: “Somewhere near a volcano, I would imagine.”
(8:44:36 PM) * * * Vargas shrugs. “Depends on where you are. Sometimes rich people make artificial ones.”
(8:45:00 PM) Vargas: “Saunas they call them.”
(8:45:40 PM) Miriam: “Are you familiar with this concept, Serribon?”
(8:46:21 PM) Serribon: “Not particularly. But if the heat comes from within the earth, that would be the sort of place to find it.”
(8:46:49 PM) Serribon: “And, of course, there are the public baths in Andropolis.”
(8:47:11 PM) Miriam: “Yes, but not like this. They’re just fountains and oils.”
(8:47:35 PM) * * * Vargas pulls out a sheaf of paper, and draws an illustration of how you make a sauna with hot stones.
(8:48:28 PM) Serribon: “Oh. You may not have been – there was one attached to the grand temple. I think they heat the water elsewhere and pipe it into the pool.”
(8:48:45 PM) * * * Miriam nods and then glances over Vargas’s shoulder.
(8:48:47 PM) * * * Miriam raises an eyebrow. “You’re an artist. Since when are you an artist?”
(8:49:37 PM) Vargas: “I’ve been taking classes in drawing and painting ever since I made that phantasmagraph spell. I wanted to do something more than a literal image. I wanted to expand and be creative with it.”
(8:50:59 PM) Miriam: “Huh. Oh, right, the spell that captures an image. That was spooky.”
(8:51:55 PM) Vargas: “I thought it was really cool. That’s the first original spell I’ve ever made.”
(8:52:13 PM) Vargas: “I’m working on a new one that measures distances.”
(8:52:26 PM) Vargas: “I’m going to combine the two, and make a new kind of cartography.”
(8:52:39 PM) Miriam: “You’re very ambitious, aren’t you.”
(8:52:42 PM) * * * Vargas pulls out a pencil, and starts sketching the mountain view.
(8:53:40 PM) Vargas: “I suppose so. There is just so much to do. So many amazing things to try and improve upon.”
(8:54:04 PM) Vargas: “I plan on flying over the capital, taking pictures, and creates maps as a gift to the King.”
(8:54:16 PM) Vargas: “Maybe I can curry his favor that way, and get more funding for research.”
(8:54:38 PM) Vargas: “Maybe map other parts of the kingdom.”
(8:55:01 PM) * * * Miriam just shakes her head in wonder. She looks across at Serribon. “What about you, Serribon. Are you ambitious? Are you working toward some ulterior motive?”
(8:55:04 PM) Vargas: “If I ever get the chance, I want to map Andropolis too.”
(8:58:12 PM) Miriam: (I think Serribon fizzled.)
(8:58:35 PM) Serribon: “Presently, no. As long as I am beholden to the temple, I don’t see much point in planning for goals that can be so easily dismissed.”
(8:58:55 PM) Miriam: “But you have goals? You said yourself, our time is almost up.”
(9:02:43 PM) Serribon: “There’s whatever we have been brought into this whump phenomenon to accomplish to take into consideration. Beyond that, who knows what fate has in store?”
(9:03:28 PM) Miriam: “You think there’s a purpose to all of this? And you’re content to be cast along on the wind?”
(9:03:59 PM) Exterminatus: boom!
(9:04:33 PM) Miriam: Happy forf to you too, Bill. :-)
(9:04:34 PM) Serribon: “There has to be a point to it. Otherwise, why would anyone have bothered to set it in motion?”
(9:04:58 PM) Exterminatus: (What’s this about whumping?)
(9:05:16 PM) Vargas: “I think having a life and goals outside whumping is a good thing. It helps me cope, as I said before.”
(9:05:33 PM) Vargas: (you got playtime Bill?)
(9:05:56 PM) Miriam: “Who says it was a person? Who says it wasn’t the gods, simply bored and looking to entertain themselves? Who says there’s any more significance to this than there is to a volcanic eruption?”
(9:06:06 PM) Exterminatus: (Aye)
(9:06:21 PM) * * * Vargas perks his head up. “Hey, that’s Ibram!”
(9:06:35 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * looks like shit. *
(9:06:39 PM) Vargas: (Ibram, you were whumped to a mountain trial. You are following it up the mountain to a smoke signal)
(9:06:46 PM) Serribon: “Regardless, this is the path that has been set before me. I intend to see it to its end. Or mine. It’s as good a purpose as any.”
(9:06:52 PM) Vargas: “Mein Gott, he looks like an elephant shat on him.”
(9:06:55 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * is basically like 1 hp from falling over *
(9:07:27 PM) Serribon: “Hardly.”
(9:07:42 PM) * * * Vargas hops up, and runs over to him to help walk him to the shelter.
(9:07:50 PM) Vargas: The shelter is cut into the side of the mountain.
(9:07:51 PM) * * * Miriam stares at Serribon for another few seconds before looking out of the shelter and then down at her cup again.
(9:07:53 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * covered in assorted blood *
(9:08:11 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * staggers around *
(9:08:32 PM) Vargas: “Ibram, what happened to you?”
(9:08:57 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * spits, phlegm mixed with lots of blood *
(9:09:05 PM) Serribon: “I hope all of that isn’t yours.”
(9:09:24 PM) * * * Vargas helps him down by the fire. “I will make you some tea.”
(9:09:24 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Some of it is. Probably about other chaps though.”
(9:11:04 PM) Vargas: “I have to say, Serribon, I’m a little surprised by your answer.”
(9:11:24 PM) * * * Vargas looks Ibram over. “Not missing any fingers or toes. Still got your head.”
(9:11:46 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * also is carrying a sack with the herzlandish equivalent of $ on it. It clinks *
(9:13:19 PM) * * * Vargas says to him, “Are you sure you’ve made the best choice of company, Ibram?”
(9:13:28 PM) Vargas: “Are you fighting for money?”
(9:13:47 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I was fighting because they owed me 400 gold.”
(9:13:50 PM) Miriam: And so it begins. Nag nag nag.
(9:14:49 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “The mage did something weird.”
(9:15:26 PM) Vargas: “Hmm?”
(9:15:55 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Yeah, cast a spell and weakened me. Made me feel… I don’t know, tired?”
(9:16:09 PM) Vargas: “Interesting.”
(9:16:21 PM) Vargas: “Maybe a failed sleep spell.”
(9:17:48 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Could be. Don’t think so. It worked. I was weaker for a while.”
(9:18:05 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 18
(9:18:13 PM) Vargas: “Well, Ibram. I’ve got tough news.”
(9:18:23 PM) Vargas: “You’re going to live. Congratulations.”
(9:18:32 PM) Vargas: “Have some tea.”
(9:18:46 PM) * * * Vargas gives you some honey and lavender tea.
(9:19:23 PM) * * * Serribon finally speaks up once you’ve stopped fretting over Ibram like an old woman. “I am not a scholar or a wizard or a performer. I have no family fortune or business to fall back on. With my training, I could be a mercenary, a brigand, or an artisan. There is glory to be had in none of those.”
(9:19:52 PM) Miriam: “Is that what you want, Serribon? Glory?”
(9:20:29 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * drinks some tea *
(9:21:21 PM) Serribon: “But to see this curse to its end… To prove myself its better, or perhaps to cure some great wrong… What else should I want?”
(9:23:16 PM) * * * Vargas ponders Serribon’s answer.
(9:23:43 PM) Miriam: “And what if I’m right? What if there’s no purpose to it? What if it simply goes until we’re all dead?”
(9:23:58 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I just want to do the right thing as much as I can, and maybe make enough money to give my family a good life.”
(9:25:38 PM) Serribon: “Everything ‘simply goes on until we’re all dead’. But at least I will have seen and done things that most people could never conceive of. Better than dying a bent old man reeking of the tannery.”
(9:26:34 PM) * * * Miriam snorts. “The right thing seems to be different for everyone.”
(9:26:44 PM) Serribon: (afk)
(9:29:08 PM) Vargas: “Nothing wrong with that.”
(9:30:37 PM) Miriam: “Until two visions of the right thing come into diametric opposition. How many people have we alread killed because their idea of the right thing differed from yours, or his, or his?” she says, gesturing to Vargas and Ibram and Serribon in turn.
(9:31:18 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I’m not having this discussion, Miriam.”
(9:31:20 PM) Miriam: (Away put your weapon! I mean you no harm!)
(9:31:40 PM) Exterminatus: (Our adventuring party would shiv him and loot him)
(9:31:46 PM) * * * Miriam smiles at Ibram. “Spoken like a true tyrant.”
(9:31:58 PM) * * * Vargas snickers.
(9:32:05 PM) Miriam: “Kill first, ask questions never.”
(9:32:08 PM) Vargas: “A very philosophical question.”
(9:32:14 PM) Vargas: “Hmm.”
(9:32:51 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Oh I’m sure. Because I impose my will on so many bloody people. Don’t I, sah?”
(9:32:56 PM) Vargas: “Disagreements are part of the human condition. Part of the natural condition of all finite sentients. I don’t think it is avoidable.”
(9:33:19 PM) Vargas: “Please rest, Ibram. You are wounded.”
(9:33:49 PM) Miriam: “I’ve done bad things to people to keep myself alive. That’s the nature of the world. Dressing it up in a pretense of altruism, though… that’s the true crime. Lie to yourself. Lie to the world. Lie and kill until no one dares speak against you, or until they all rise up against you.”
(9:34:19 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “The people I killed today were trying to kill me.”
(9:34:46 PM) Miriam: “Maybe that was right for them. Maybe they deserved to win.”
(9:35:06 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “How unfortunate that they met me then.”
(9:35:14 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * does sit down and sip his tea *
(9:35:19 PM) * * * Vargas tells Ibram to sshhhh in a gentle fashion. He says to Miriam. “I don’t know what to think of what you said without context. Can you tell me more.”
(9:36:45 PM) Miriam: “More about what? What have I said, except to question your certainty-
all of yours-that there’s any point to any of this?”
(9:37:36 PM) Vargas: “If I gave you the impression of that I hold any certainty of purpose to all this, I apologize. I do not. I will confess that I have a strong hunch though.”
(9:37:51 PM) Miriam: “Based on nothing.”
(9:38:10 PM) Vargas: “Nothing is a bit of a stretch.”
(9:38:16 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram>
(9:38:38 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Weve seen a lot of circumstances where our actions are apparently needed to change things before we whump.”
(9:40:37 PM) Vargas: “I’m thinking of something bigger and fuzzier than that.”
(9:40:42 PM) Miriam: “Have we? We find ourselves places, and do things, and kill people. And then an hour later or a day later or a week later we shift home. What if we had done nothing? What if we had picked the other side? How do we know we saved the right people or killed the right people, except according to your particular moral whims on the day? We never have any real information.”
(9:41:06 PM) Miriam: “I think you’re seeing shapes in the clouds.”
(9:41:09 PM) Serribon: “I do not see why you keep insisting that things must have “a point”. There is only the situation before us – the hundreds of years of history that may have led up to this moment do not particularly matter, beyond what they may tell us of how we can see ourselves out of it. And if, in doing so, we set off the avalanche that is to eventually kill us, so be it. That is life.”
(9:41:19 PM) Vargas: “Maybe. Maybe not.”
(9:41:40 PM) Serribon: ”’What if’ does not matter. There are no do-overs.”
(9:41:58 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I’ll put it this way. We killed a bunch of people who were murdering little girls.
(9:42:10 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I can’t find any justification for killing little children. Can you?”
(9:43:06 PM) * * * Miriam looks at Ibram. “Give yourself time, Ibram. You’ll think of something.”
(9:43:20 PM) Serribon: “We did, once. And on another day, we slaughtered a horde of kobolds protecting their home. There would seem to be no overarching moral angle to what we do. We can only do what is right by the moment and our conscience.”
(9:43:45 PM) * * * Miriam twitches her lip. “It’s not enough, Serribon. It’s not enough to just exist and be kicked around like that.”
(9:44:17 PM) Serribon: “For you, maybe. But unless you can stop the kicking, it will have to do.”
(9:44:49 PM) Vargas: “I feel an interesting tension here.”
(9:45:03 PM) Miriam: “I can stop the kicking,” mutters Miriam. “Any time I want.”
(9:45:23 PM) Vargas: “How’s that?”
(9:45:45 PM) * * * Miriam finishes off her drink and hands the cup back to Vargas. “Thank you for the tea.”
(9:46:09 PM) Serribon: “There is only one way off of the playing field.”
(9:47:05 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Suicide, sir.”
(9:48:03 PM) Miriam: (“Sharks have a week dedicated to /him./” Best one yet, says I.)
(9:48:13 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 18
(9:48:30 PM) Vargas: (19 sense motive on Miriam to see if she reacts to the word suicide at all)
(9:48:31 PM) Miriam: Your die is stuck.
(9:48:53 PM) Vargas: (Let me unstick my die)
(9:48:56 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 19
(9:48:57 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 5
(9:48:59 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 12
(9:49:01 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 17
(9:49:03 PM) Miriam: Heh.
(9:49:03 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 14
(9:49:04 PM) Vargas: See?
(9:50:18 PM) Serribon: (yeah, that’s one of the better XX commercials so far)
(9:52:07 PM) Miriam: (Ah, it’s what I thought. Mynocks. No biggie.)
(9:52:35 PM) Miriam: “Well, obviously I’ve ruined the mood. I’ll shut up now.”
(9:52:36 PM) * * * Vargas rolls up his illustration of the hot sauna, and rolls up his sketch of the mountainside with it. He goes over to Miriam, “Here. I think you’d really, really like to try a hot spring or a sauna. With the money you have, you should be able to arrange it. Try it out. If one doesn’t exist, use the sketch as a guide.”
(9:53:05 PM) Miriam: “I’ll do that, Vargas. Soon as I’m released.”
(9:53:23 PM) Vargas: “Good.”
(9:53:35 PM) Vargas: “I’m going to kick Ibram in the ribs for getting into fights.”
(9:53:42 PM) * * * Vargas rolls a d20: 13
(9:54:37 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> * looks at vargas. His eyes narrow, and smoulder beneath his heavy brow * “This is not a good day to strike me, sir.”
(9:54:57 PM) Vargas: “Then I’ll have Serribon kick you. Shush.”
(9:55:11 PM) Miriam: (Yes it is. You’re in negative HP. He only has to land one and you’re out like a light. :-D )
(9:55:23 PM) Serribon: “I may do so on general principle.”
(9:56:11 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I would not recommend it.”
(9:56:51 PM) Vargas: “You’re no fun Ibram.”
(9:57:03 PM) Vargas: “I’m going to turn your beard green for the fun of it.”
(9:57:06 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “If you must know I was hired to guard a shipment of beer coming into Mordheim.” * he looks sad * “I miss fun, sir, really I do.”
(9:57:20 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “That might be worth some fun, I know the blacksmith would laugh.”
(9:57:24 PM) Vargas: “I’m not serious, you know that right?”
(9:57:30 PM) Serribon: “How were you hired to do anything? I thought you were beholden to Vargas?”
(9:57:36 PM) * * * Vargas turns his beard green.
(9:57:54 PM) Vargas: “Part time. We can’t co-exist for long periods of time.”
(9:58:01 PM) * * * Vargas smiles.
(9:58:09 PM) Serribon: “Understandable.”
(9:58:11 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Well, more that I annoy him when he’s reading books.”
(9:58:22 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “And he’s not much good in the forge, so it works.”
(9:59:19 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “And I saved a worthless whore and her tricky partner, and ended up cheated out of 400 gold. BUt the bastard who cheated me decided he needed some muscle to protect his beer, since someone keeps stealing it. So I did.”
(10:00:22 PM) Vargas: “Ouch. I knew that girl was trouble.”
(10:00:30 PM) Serribon: “Why would you work for such a person willingly?”
(10:00:37 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Charged him 400 gold for it too, the bugger.”
(10:00:47 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Because he was straight with me about what that girl was.”
(10:01:21 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “And in the end I owed him for that. Setting me straight.” * he scowls * “Says I’m his, now, but he can piss off. He knows what’ll happen if he tries to make me do something I don’t want to do.”
(10:04:14 PM) Miriam: (I want them alive! No disintegrations.)
(10:04:35 PM) Miriam: (Yes, my lord. I’ll be sure to deliver them fully integrated.)
(10:04:37 PM) Serribon: (aw, man – but disintegrations are why I got into this line of work!)
(10:05:16 PM) Miriam: (I know, I know. You can disintegrate some wookies after supper. How about that?)
(10:05:31 PM) Serribon: (crikey, I think somebody just chained a pack of m80s)
(10:05:53 PM) Vargas: (got to head to bed guys)
(10:05:56 PM) Vargas: (later)
(10:06:00 PM) Exterminatus: godnight
(10:06:01 PM) Vargas left the room (quit: Quit: ChatZilla 0.9.86 [Firefox 3.6.6/20100625231939]).
(10:06:05 PM) Miriam: (Night! Thanks for setting this…)
(10:06:25 PM) Miriam: (...up. Jeeze, he just up and goes, don’t he.)
(10:06:41 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I paid for the lives of the whore and her boy, more than they’re worth, but I didn’t want them to die just because.”
(10:07:30 PM) * * * Miriam peers at Ibram for a moment but says nothing. She promised to shut up.
(10:08:21 PM) Serribon: (Man, is Yoda gonna have to force-slap a bitch?)
(10:08:29 PM) Miriam: (Verily.)
(10:08:46 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I just don’t want to be used anymore. Honestly I’m happy just working with Vargas and doing work for the king, but people always want something from me.”
(10:09:30 PM) Miriam: (That was my favorite way to kill uppity sith juniors in KOTOR. Once their big speech was over, I’d respond by ramming them into a wall over and over again until they died.)
(10:09:53 PM) Serribon: “Then stop giving it to them?”
(10:10:39 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I did.”
(10:11:14 PM) Serribon: “Good.”
(10:11:18 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “This was just to see the scales balanced. Besides, I ahve more important things to worry about, like who stole Master Wellington’s thing.”
(10:11:56 PM) * * * Miriam snickers.
(10:12:57 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “What?”
(10:13:50 PM) Miriam: “I didn’t say anything.”
(10:14:15 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “What was funny?” * He looks confused * “Oh, my beard.”
(10:14:49 PM) Miriam: “Yes. That’s what it was.”
(10:15:11 PM) Miriam: I’m giving everyone a hundred XP for this. Someone let Vargas know, if y’all see him before I do.
(10:15:16 PM) Exterminatus: sure.
(10:15:45 PM) * * * Miriam accepts 100 XP as well for inciting discord and unrest, and annoying other party members.
(10:16:06 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “I’m a bit mad about that. If who vargas thinks stole it stole it, they used him and treated him poorly.” * he looks angry for a moment *
(10:16:16 PM) Exterminatus: <ibram> “Contemptible.”