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Butt Discussin
Sep 12, 2010

HiHo ChiRho posted:

Ford Percheron Maximum Mad Max

Kenji donates for full karma

Same vote


Nov 21, 2005


I'm the only one who wants the truely amazing truck amd also the only one who specified how to mad max it up

Feb 14, 2012

Kid, don't threaten me. There are worse things than death, and uh, I can do all of them.

Ham Wrangler

Dodge Quixote
Maximum Mad for whatever wins

We need Fuzzy to have something fast and tough, she's an honorary Ork after all And when she shows up to hot extract Kenji from a blown run, she'll need that speed and armor.

Also: Fuzzy spends extra on the upgrades to get her boy Tek a foot in the door at the local chop shop completely honest garage

We screwed up this young ork's ambition out of our own sense of morality (and also not wanting Dave's heart to break), it's high time we own up to that and give this guy a hand. We want Tek to do the upgrades cause he's a decent hand with an engine and we can give him a fair wage, but he doesn't have the lift/pit to do some of the nitty gritty work. Some rental fees/mentor labor at the local mechanic can give Tek a chance to impress his way into an honest trade. Plus we'll need a steady mechanic for vehicle repairs and a trusted mechanic to illegally re-install the HMG mount on our new Quixote.

(I initially was thinking we could improve Tek's contact rating, but we never got him as a contact back then )

Deadmeat5150 posted:

I'm the only one who wants the truely amazing truck amd also the only one who specified how to mad max it up

Yeah what this guy said, he sees the light of the Quixote (It should be Rocinante, but Quixote had better recognition with the Ares focus groups)

e: you forgot the winchless tow cable made of high tensile memory metal so you can just attach it and it winds itself!! A steal at 500 nuyen a meter!

Kenji Donates for Full Karma

e:Kenji should also tag along to the mechanic to see if they know any Riggers who need any extra work. Gentoo is a good wheel-elf, but if he's doing an infiltration, they'll need another driver and drones can help with the physical overwatch.

I need dig out my digital copy of SR5 and start thinking of how to spend all of Kenji's karma, I forget what the current plan is but I feel like he has 30 some still unspent/unplanned.

Fellis fucked around with this message at Mar 18, 2019 around 23:48

Ice Phisherman
Apr 12, 2007


Joyce, Krupa and Olisha - Saturday, August 3rd, 2075 – Late afternoon – Blake Island

Joyce had scoured the island for hours in order to find Krupa. As he searched he grew more and more frantic that Krupa might be avoiding him on purpose. Initially he'd started at her cabin and knocked for several minutes, but as the lights were off she either wasn’t there or she was avoiding him.

Unlike Krupa, he couldn’t astrally project around at the speed of thought to find out where she was. He was perhaps one of the rarest and most magically flexible of all awakened, a mystic adept. The one downside to that was that they couldn't project. He could cast spells and use adept powers, though it also meant that he needed to work harder, and he really needed to. He'd spent so much time working for Tir that he barely ranked as magical talent. He didn’t have any tracking spells either, though he was seriously considering learning one tomorrow and he wasn’t allowed to summon spirits to find her for him without permission which meant explaining his reasoning. That he couldn’t bring himself to do, so asking security wasn't a possibility either.

His cheek ached and like Kenji had told him, he shouldn’t heal himself. It angered him at first that Kenji had presumed to take his wine and a promise of influence as payment. Not to mention concealing the fact that Krupa was watching the entire time. However, he reminded himself that if he’d just talked to Krupa in the first place then maybe none of this would have happened. That cooled his temper. That and the fact that his anger and indignation meant he was probably trying retreat back to a mental space that was familiar to him. He realized that if he was going to make it through this with the person he loved the most, he was going to need to change. How he would change, how much and what that even meant seemed daunting. Even starting seemed impossible because he didn't know where to start.

He huffed and puffed on the trail as the light of the day began to wane as the sun sank lower and lower in the sky. He’d been hiking for almost five hours now and he’d had to take frequent breaks. Belatedly he wished that he’d taken something to eat and he’d run out of water an hour ago. It was humiliating to realize just how out of shape he was. Even a hike on these simple trails was exhausting, and he’d nearly fallen more than once as he stumbled on a rock or root. Krupa enjoyed being active and had invited him more than once to get outside and enjoy nature which as a shaman he was supposed to do, but he almost always found excuses. So as a result he was sweaty, bruised, aching, dirty, ravenous hungry and thirsty. He desperately wished that no one would see him in this state, but then he took that back as he realized that he needed to find Krupa.

After his fifth hour of searching and checking the last of the mana lodges for the second time, he decided to check his commlink. There was a wireless jamming spell on the island, but he could receive simple updates as he moved, though he didn't know how it was possible as the signals decayed rapidly after anything more than a few feet. It was possible that if she didn't want to be found, she may have asked one of the teachers or perhaps security to section off part of the island for her. He could've kicked himself as he found that a piece of the northwestern side of the island was reserved. He’d been there previously, but that was hours ago. Not knowing what else to do and knowing that it might get him in trouble, he approached the very edge of the reserved area.

Heading north was trickier than it seemed because the trails on the island weren’t straight. The path that took him vaguely northward would curved to the south-east, only to split into two more trails, neither of them heading north. He wasn’t lost and this wasn’t some manly bravado though, no. The island was just too small to get lost. What happened was that he grew impatient and decided to blaze a trail. The foliage was thick and there was a small slope too small to be a hill. As he crested the slope between two trees, he lost his footing and tumbled down the opposite side of the slope as he slipped on some moss. He didn’t fall far, but he rolled near a particularly tall Sweetgum tree and its prickly seedpods scratched deeply at his bare skin. He reached for his magic, but bit his lip and decided against it. No, he’d just deal with the pain.

What followed though were a few minutes of pulling the spiky seedpods out of his arms, legs and clothing, though most of these he was able to just brush away without thought. Then he shakily got to his feet, far dirtier than he was before and carefully made his way to the sectioned off area in hopes that Krupa was there. As he came to the edge, he spied a small pile of clothing in the distance on a rock. His eyes went wide at the implication and he saw a brown skinned figure swimming in the Sound. His heart hammered in his chest and he turned around, not sure what to do. He didn’t want to violate her privacy or spy on her and so he thought for a minute before coming to a conclusion. He awkwardly walked backwards up to the beach and sat in the sand in full view of Krupa, though he faced away from her. It was the best that he could do.

The commlink beeped at him as he'd accidentally strayed into that temporarily forbidden area. He wasn’t supposed to be here. Though it pained him to move, he stood up and walked further away until his commlink stopped beeping at him. Then he sat again, but now with sand in his shoes, which he busied himself emptying out. The wet, salty air and coarse sand made every scratch sting all the more. Time crawled as he waited and he kept from consulting his commlink to check the time. For a while all he heard was the sound of the waves, the wind in the trees and if he stretched his senses, the sounds of civilization far off in the distance. He tried focusing on that instead of his fear and pain. It didn’t work. Those sensations of pain, fear and humiliation only seemed heightened now. It would just be something that he had to deal with until he spoke to Krupa- If she spoke to him at all.

His mind began to spin into worse and worse scenarios as he waited. What if Krupa didn’t see him? What if she did and decided that he’d been spying on her while she swam? What if she’d already decided to leave him? What if she listened, but he couldn’t express how he felt? He tried to reach out to Dove for inner peace, but he couldn’t feel his presence. Then Joyce tried to run through his breathing exercises to calm himself, but he only had limited success. He kept trying at it because at least trying and failing gave him something to do.

He didn’t know how much of that time passed when he felt a familiar hand on his shoulder. Krupa’s touch was gentle, but his breath hitched in his throat all the same. Those slender fingers of hers curled around his shoulder. In that moment he felt so very brittle as she let her fingers feel the knots in his slight muscles and of course her hand was soon clammy from his sweat. No magic coursed through her fingers, she did nothing to work through the knots of stress as she sometimes did when he'd had a bad day, but at the very least she was here. He didn’t feel any better. In fact he felt worse. There was a lump in his throat that wouldn’t go away and it felt like a fist was grabbing his stomach twisting him up inside. His mouth was dry and he became aware of the sudden pressure of his bladder.

Then her hand left his shoulder. He waited for something more, but all he could hear were her soft footsteps in the sand as she walked away from him. His heart broke as the person he loved most in life decided he wasn't worth the trouble to even talk to. It cemented what he’d feared in his heart. He’d been a terrible person and Krupa wouldn’t love a bully. He wanted to go to her, to tell her that he’d changed and that he regretted everything. That he loved her with all of his heart and he wanted to change. Instead he felt this ugly, hopeless feeling spread throughout his body. He couldn’t muster the will to move, or to beg or cry or curl into a ball. He sat paralyzed by her rejection.

That ugly, hopeless feeling pooled in his stomach and threatened to overwhelm him, but to his surprise he heard her footsteps once again as she returned. He inhaled sharply, but couldn’t say anything. Again the fingers came, but this time they touched his cheek where Kenji had punched him. He winced and pulled away, and so did her fingers and they both paused, reluctant to try again.

“Dolphin said I should leave you,” she said, “For what you tried to do to Kenji.”

Joyce winced. Kenji had told him the truth. She’d been there, she’d heard Olisha’s accusation and he hadn't denied it. He’d only reframed what he'd done in a better light- Played with words. It was more confirmation of what he was– A user, even a bully which he knew that Krupa wouldn't tolerate. He didn’t bully people in the physical sense, but he did pressure people to bend them to his will often when they didn’t want to be bent. Kenji hadn’t been the first person he’d attempted to bend to his wil. He’d even done it to Krupa a few times when she wasn’t sure about the morality of helping him with his tasks. He'd always said the right thing to get her to do what he wanted, but all he'd had for her were more words to soothe her. He'd abused her trust and he felt so low for using her. There had always been excuses, rationalizations, and other “good reasons” to convince him that his bad behavior was somehow justified. His scheming seemed so small in comparison to what he'd risked. Now he reaped the consequences. He licked his lips and spoke in a small, shaky voice.

“Krupa, I’m…” he began.

“No talking, Joyce,” she said, cutting him off, “If you start talking, you’ll be able to convince me of anything. I can’t risk that. Just nod yes or no. Do you understand?”

Joyce’s mouth hung open. She’d never interrupted him before during the truly important moments. It shocked him. He licked his lips again and then shut his mouth with a small click of his teeth. He tried to control his breathing as his heart thudded against his chest. Eventually he nodded yes.

“Okay, good,” she said, with quiet relief.

She was quiet for a few seconds and he could almost feel how near she was. Then he felt her breath against his neck and the small hairs there all stood on end.

“You’re bleeding,” she said, concerned.

Joyce looked down at his arms and legs. He hadn’t noticed, but some of the scratches on his legs were long and had indeed bled a little with small streaks. He looked up again, away from her as she was still behind him, and nodded. Then to his surprise, he felt her touch again. There was the gentle, familiar warmth of her magic. She leaned over, set her hand on his leg and a few of the scratches closed and some of that pain went away. The blood remained since it was already outside of him and he was sure a few of the thorns from the seed pods were still in him too. He’d have to take them out later.

“Sorry, I…I thought I’d be able to get them all,” she said, awkwardly, “The scratches I mean. I usually do so much better than that.”

He shrugged a little, but smiled. The fact that she still cared, even if it was just a little, made the pain seem all the more bearable. In his peripheral vision he saw that she was in that white, one piece bathing suit that he loved and here he sat, covered in dirt, with blood on his legs, a bruised cheek, a dry mouth and a full bladder. Then his stomach growled as if to somehow complete his humiliation, and he clutched his stomach. He felt so wretched before her and she was resplendent in her bathing suit. The thought of her wearing that was the last thing he needed right now as he very much liked the look of her in it.

“I was there when you were watching the trids,” she admitted, “I didn’t know what to do last night. I couldn’t sleep. So I got up early and took a walk. Olisha found me and I didn’t want to talk to her, but she talked to me and I listened because...Well because I was so desperate that I’d even talk to her.”

Joyce hung his head in shame. He’d ignored her and she'd turned to Olisha. This was his fault.

“She said that you came to her and said that if you watched a trid, she’d stop bullying me,” she continued, “That was…Well it was really nice, but all I wanted to do was talk to you like I’ve been saying. You wouldn’t listen. All you'd do was say the right words so I'd be quiet...I could tell. That really hurt."

Shame prickled up his spine and he squirmed.

"So then I asked her if I could get the same deal for you because I thought maybe you were trying to surprise me," she said, doubtfully, "I didn't think so. Nothing felt like a surprise, so I was pretty desperate. She told me that if I projected in and listened then yes, she’d stop bullying you. I said yes, but not just for that. I wanted to know what was so important that you could talk to Olisha and Kenji, but not to me. I couldn’t see the screen, because I can’t see electronic displays in the astral. The glass gets in the way. So she said that she’d say what was on the screen. If anyone said otherwise, well…It doesn’t matter, no one did say otherwise. I listened and she told me what was on the screen. And it all sounded so horrible.”

He nodded in understanding that yes, what Olisha had said had been real, or at least what he'd recalled. A part of him wanted to muster up some anger or outrage for Olisha, but he couldn’t manage it. He was just too scared and tired, but only now did he realize just how thoroughly he’d been outmaneuvered by her. That didn’t matter though. He wanted to comfort Krupa, but didn’t know how.

“The only reason I’m talking to you right now is because I can tell that you were surprised and horrified,” she said, “You didn’t know.”

He nodded his head in agreement. Krupa inhaled sharply.

“What? You knew about that?” she asked, suddenly shocked.

Joyce shook his head violently in negation. He wanted to speak to her to explain himself, but he didn’t want to risk driving her away.

“You didn’t know?” she asked.

He shook his head no. Krupa sighed with relief.

“Okay, good,” she said, in relief, “You scared me. Sorry, I got confused.”

Joyce sighed with relief a moment later. If she’d misunderstood and hadn’t listened then that would have been the end of it. Now he was scared and didn’t know what to do, so he did nothing. Krupa continued.

“I can tell that you have a heart,” she said, “I felt so bad when you were um…Throwing up. All I wanted to do was hold you. Well, maybe not when you were throwing up, but you know. I knew there were rumors about Tir doing bad things, but I always thought that they were lies. Now I don’t know what to think and I don’t know who to ask about what's real and what's a lie.”

Joyce reluctantly nodded along in agreement with her.

“You too?” she asked.

He nodded again. He’d been lied to for his entire life about his homeland and now he didn’t even know how to educate himself. There was so much he needed to know, but he also dreaded what he may learn.

The conversation lulled to a stop. He couldn’t speak and she wasn’t asking questions anymore. So he waited, but waiting brought him nothing. After a minute, he tried to fish the commlink out of his pocket, but panicked as he remembered that he’d fallen down that slope. What if it had fallen out of his pocket or worse, if he’d crushed it with his body? So he groped in his pocket and to his relief he found it still there and still intact. Krupa didn’t seem to want to be seen by him either. Like Kenji, Joyce had a grasp of his kinesics power as well to read body language, though he was more adept at using it from a year of practice. So without looking up at her, he presented the commlink in a shaky hand. He held it there for a few moments before she tentatively took it.

“What’s this for?” she asked.

He couldn’t speak, so he only made an inarticulate gesture.

“Right, sorry,” she said, “Do you want me to watch something?”

He really didn’t want her to. On that commlink was the secret about Gilbrand and Krupa’s sister as well as his worst self on display in conversation with Kenji. Just the day before last an internal email had accidentally been addressed to him about Gilbrand. It had only hinted that at what he’d done and that he was being reassigned. The rumors around the office that he'd overheard had been far more dire, though though they were just rumors and Joyce hadn’t believed it at first until he'd asked his father just to be sure. That had been a painful conversation to have those rumors confirmed so callously. That was what had given him pause in how to talk to Krupa, because the monster known as Gilbrand had spent so long around her sister. His initial caution and the cowardice in refusing to tell her had come back to haunt him.

The wind blew gently across his empty hand as he finally realized that she’d taken the commlink while he'd been thinking. The burner commlink had no screen, so she strode towards her pile of clothes, grabbed her into her own commlink, downloaded the file and was in the process of watching it as she returned. He listened to Kenji and himself as they argued. There were his denials, the punch, which made Krupa gasp, accusations and more arguing before he finally broke down. She stopped the recording several times and this prolonged his anxiety as he imagined what she was thinking about. He wished he hadn’t claimed that Gilbrand had been his and his family’s monster, but it was true. What was said was said. In a distant part of himself, the part that wasn’t freaking out, that Kenji had excluded the advice for Joyce to keep his bruise and also how he’d procured his wine and services.

He had time to muse on that fact because Krupa wasn’t talking. As the time stretched he found himself growing even more and more nervous. Then he heard it, not quite believing that it came from her at first. Krupa growled angrily, low and long in her throat.

“They promised me that they wouldn’t do it again,” she said, slowly, “They promised me.”

Joyce closed his eyes. This was the side of her that connected most strongly with Dolphin. The spirit mentor despised bullying in all of its forms- The abuse of an imbalance in power. Joyce had shared his own story with Kenji about how Dove had contacted him, but Krupa didn’t share her own. Not since the first and only time where she’d been laughed at in class, though she'd framed it as her parents being mean to her sister and she'd stood up to them. What actually happened as he'd learned later was that she’d stood up for her sister when she found out that her parents were abusing Saanvi. Krupa had said it had been the hardest thing in her life to stand up to her parents, who’d always treated her well and thought the world of her. While she'd been laughed at, apparently, Dolphin had taken her seriously. Attracting a spirit mentor wasn’t a matter of doing great things, or at least that wasn't a requirement. That first step meant doing something you’d considered not only hard, but impossible before you did it. It was the breakthrough that called the great spirits, or so Julian speculated. To Krupa, the impossible had been standing up to her parents as they bullied and abused her sister, though he felt like she hadn't shared everything with him.

The sick feeling returned. He should have known. Even though her parents weren't here, he silently berated himself for not knowing. Then heard the sand shift as she raced towards the woods. A barefoot, brown skinned figure in a white swimsuit clutched a small, thick branch as she raced back towards the shore. With an overhand throw, she tossed the stick high into the air and shouted as loud as she could.

“Gosh darn it!."

The branch went far before splashing harmlessly into the Sound. In fact she’d tossed it so hard that she wobbled and toppled into the surf onto her knees. Waves lapped at her, but they were gentle. She stood up before Joyce could and in full view of him now, stalked towards him, eyes filled with anger.

“Did you know?” she asked.

Joyce shook his head furiously.

“But you said you knew something,” she continued.

Joyce wanted to speak, to scream what he knew. Yes and no wasn’t enough. He was trapped by her rules and his fear that he'd lose her. He saw Krupa close her eyes, breathe deep and speak.

“Tell me why you didn’t tell me. Talk to me, Joyce,” she spat.

“I thought it was a lie!” he blurted out, “I got an email by accident! It just said that Gilbrand had been dismissed! And then there were rumors around the consulate! I didn’t know what to believe! Gilbrand has worked for my family for so long and I didn’t know! And then I asked my dad and he said it was true! I was scared to talk to you because I’m responsible for Gilbrand and Saanvi!”

He’d leaned over from the force of his words, shivering, face nearly in the sand. Only his scratched up arms had caught him from pitching fully forwards. The force of his words seemed to take her aback, because when he finally pushed himself upright again, the anger had all drained out of her.

“You didn’t tell me because of this law thing?” she asked.

Joyce nodded weakly and she frowned in consideration.

“That’s really, dumb,” she said, simply, "You're smarter than me, but that's just so dumb."

Joyce felt suddenly relieved and annoyed, but at least it was better than than fear.

“My parents are bad people," she continued, Your dad is a bad person. Gilbrand is a really, really bad person. They can’t make you do bad things. It’s your choice to listen to them or not. If you can’t make a choice because you don't know, then you got tricked, because my parents didn’t tell me what they were doing to Saanvi. If this is what it means to be a noble, then I don’t want to be one.”

And that was it. This was her rejection of him. The life he envisioned with her at his side would never come to pass. That knowledge tore at him. The strength drained out of him and he fell on his side in the sand.

“It’s over then,” he whispered.

What?” she asked.

He grasped at the sand and watched it slip through his fingers.

“You hate me,” continued.

Krupa paused to look at him as he continually grasped at the sand. When he held on loosely, most of it stayed. When he grasped it would slip away. He’d squeezed too hard and now he had so little left. Krupa sat down next to him and laid a hand on him.

“I don’t hate, you Joyce,” she said, with a sigh, “I love you.”

His heart soared in response.

“Really?” he asked.

“But I don’t like you very much right now,” she said, testily, ignoring him.

The aborted flight of his heart bit the dirt, leaving him confused.

“I don’t want to be a noble anymore,” she said.

“But…Why?” he asked, “I don’t understand. Why wouldn’t you want to be one?”

“Uh…While you were in the bathroom throwing up, Kenji and Olisha told stories. I didn’t really want to watch you throw up so I listened in on them,” she said, awkwardly, but her lips firmed, “She said stuff about how the first nobles got their titles. If that’s true and those are the sorts of people that got titles, the abusers, then they’re not noble at all and I don’t want to be around them. Joyce, I’m not mad at you because you got tricked. I’m mad at you for doing what they do. You tried to hurt Kenji, but it's not just about Kenji. I'd be mad if you tried to hurt anyone if you're not defending yourself. That was wrong, but at least you see that it’s wrong now. I can see that much.”

She looked away from him, no longer able to keep her feelings stable.

“I don’t think I can stop loving you, but I can stop liking you,” she said, seriously, “And then I’ll leave you even though it'll hurt. Dolphin said to leave you, I asked if I could listen in case you changed. He said you might not, but I wanted to try.”

“I can change,” he promised.

“No!” she shouted.

He flinched before her sudden forcefulness and squirmed on his side in the sand. His bladder felt something was sitting on it.

“No, those are just words and promises,” she said, firmly, “Don’t tell me that you'll change. Show me. It’s not just going to be some changes and then you’re done and then everything goes back to normal. I need you to show me the person I fell in love with and he needs to stay.”

She caressed his cheek and smiled sadly.

“He’s in there somewhere,” she said, sadly, “And even if you find him, things aren’t going back to normal. There’s going to be a new normal. I don’t know what it looks like yet, but it won’t look like what we had, because if you are the kind of person who can do something like...Like that, to Kenji, who's been so nice to us, then what we had wasn't good enough. But I know that if you want to, you can do it. You can change, because you can do anything. I believe in you.”

That sad smile brightened just for an instant and he fell in love all over again with her. He didn’t imagine that falling in love would hurt so much, but it did when her smile turned sad again and he knew that he’d been the cause. He’d loved Krupa in large part for her goodness, but being with her from now on would demand much of him. It would mean standing up to people in power when they abused it, passing up opportunities because they conflicted with the morals he’d been suppressing and maybe even giving up his title. That last part sent a thrill of guilt and terror through him though. He was the only child since his older brother died, though he’d been too young to remember him. All of the hopes of his parents were pinned on him and his marriage to Krupa. This may mean betraying his family and he didn’t know how to feel about that.

“If this is the end, then…” she began, as she looked away.

“No!” he shouted.

She jumped as she was startled, but suddenly smiled at him.

“No, I’ll show you,” he said, quietly this time, “Not tell you. I'm...I'm not sure how yet, but I'll show you.”

She smiled gently at him and stroked his hair.

“Good, I’m glad,” she said.

Then she tossed a look over her shoulder to look back out at the surf.

“I’m going to try and talk to Dolphin, again,” she said, “There’s a spirit in the water, so I’m not swimming alone, but it’s getting late and it’ll disappear by sundown. I don’t want to summon it again. I'm going back in.”

They both stood up, though Joyce’s body complained from the strain. Five hours of hiking while looking for Krupa had not been kind to him. He hurt in places that he didn’t know could hurt.

“I’ll go then,” said Joyce, with a grunt as staggered to his feet.

She reached out and steadied him, but then jumped back.

“Uh...Okay, I’ll swim then,” she said.

“And I’ll show you,” he said, and then quickly added, “Not just words.”




“I’ll just…Go...Then.”

“Yeah, okay.”

“Uh…Right, okay. I'll...See you later then?

"Uh...Yeah, small island, right?"

"Small island, yeah."

After the awkward exchange, she turned around and he tried not to think about her in her bathing suit. That’s when his bladder screamed at him for attention and he retreated to the woods.

Minutes later on his way back he saw Olisha from her cabin on the senior row. He was unlucky that she had the cabin closest to the trail. She sat bonelessly on a lawn chair with a what looked like an extra-large sports drink to tame her hangover. He felt his cheeks blaze as her attention turned towards him.

“Holy poo poo, you look like you got thumped,” she said, her voice somewhat weak, “Did you get beat up?”

Joyce wanted to walk past her, but he stopped. This was potentially a moment for change. What better way to start than talking to his bully? So he turned around and strode up to her. Olisha’s eyes widened as she took in his dirty, sweaty, lightly injured self. He even smelled bad he realized and he certainly didn’t feel like a noble at the moment.

“Kenji punched me” he said.

“Nice!” she exclaimed.

She clutched her head and winced. Then she took another drink from her sports drink before speaking again.

“The boy continues to surprise. Oh well, he’s your problem now. At least until he gets expelled for hitting you anyway,” she said, quietly and nonchalantly, “Maybe suspended if he's lucky.”

“No, I deserved it,” he said.

She eyed him suspiciously and sipped her drink to buy time.

“Did he drag you out into the woods to do it?” she jibed, “Rub your face in the dirt? Hit you with some magic mojo whammy to make you think you deserved it?”

“No, no magic, I was looking for Krupa,” he said, “I couldn’t find her. The hike went for a while.”

She smiled smugly up at him from her lawn chair.

“What did she say?” asked Olisha, with a knowing smirk.

“Nothing I didn’t deserve,” said Joyce.

The smirk died and she frowned heavily at him. It occurred to Joyce that he was robbing her of her fun and he took a sort of perverse satisfaction in that. He wouldn't be awful to her, but if she responded to his him owning his actions and being honest negatively, he decided that would be her problem. And that's when he decided what to do next. It would be humiliating, but it would show Krupa that he was serious.

“Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to try and find Julian or whoever is on staff. I have a hole to dig,” he said.

“A hole,” she repeated, “For what?”

He’d turned to walk away from her, but paused and came back. She squirmed in her seat as he blocked her sunlight by accident, but he hadn’t meant to do it. If she wanted to talk she could be deprived of her sunbeam.

“For my shame pole,” he said, “I’m going to admit what I did. I don’t think I can change otherwise.”

Her mouth made a little O as she undoubtedly imagined the gigantic, intricately carved shame pole that would go in front of his cabin. Then her look of surprise transformed into a wicked grin.

“Oh poo poo, really? Christmas came early? Aww, you shouldn't have. I know Santa isn't real, Joyce. You don't have to try. Now I think I’ll just get some big, strong guy to bring my lawn chair so I can watch,” she purred, “I’ll order fruity drinks. Maybe I’ll even throw a little party.”

“Okay,” said Joyce, simply, “If that’s what you want to do.”

“Oh I will, count on it,” she said.

She was putting up a front, but Joyce could see the satisfaction bleeding out of her. This didn’t seem to be going like she thought it would.

“Now don’t forget, you need to come by to watch tonight,” she said, “Our little monster movie marathon. We still need to go get the duplicate though...”

“No need, I believe that the movie was real, but I’ll be there anyway if you want,” he said.

“Admitting I’m finally right?” she asked, smugly.

Joyce shook his head.

“No, you’re still mean, spiteful and cruel,” he said.

“You know it, baby,” she said, “Unlike some people, I don’t pretend.”

She lifted her drink up to him and then took long, satisfied gulp through her smile.

“I didn’t know anything about what you showed me and you didn’t even try to talk to me. You just bullied Krupa and me,” he said, "We would have listened if you'd done this in the first place."

She rolled her eyes at him.

“I talked to you all of last year in class,” she said, dismissively.

“No, just because I was wrong doesn’t make you right. At no point did you really try to talk to me,” he said, “I believe in peace, Olisha. It would have been so easy for you to sit down with me and try, but you let your own hangups get in the way. Today hurt, but I think I’m going to look back at today as a good day. Maybe not for a while, but eventually.”

She rolled her eyes at him.

“Of course I wasn’t going to talk to you,” she said, dismissively, “You would’ve just used the moment to try and recruit me for fashland. You should thank me, I’ve been helping you refine your aristocratic sneering. Now get out of my sunbeam.”

"Fine, I have a hole to dig anyway," he said.

Without another word, Joyce left his bully behind.


So to start off, Joyce looks for Krupa. She is actively avoiding him for a while. They roll survival off against one another. Krupa is a sporty, outdoorsy girl and Joyce is a waifish artistocrat. He has 4 dice and she has 8. 1 v 1. She successfully avoids him. He tries to take a shortcut when he finally thinks to check his commlink, but critically glitches his survival roll. He takes 1d6 physical damage and can only resist with 2 dice for body since he's pretty thin. I roll a 3 and he gets 1 hit, taking 2 physical damage from cuts and scratches as he tumbles down the hill. Ironically, this works in his favor as he just looks even more pathetic.

I do however roll 3 dice for luck to see if he loses the commlink or destroys it, which would deny him an item bonus. He gets 2 hits and he's good.

Krupa rolls a composure roll. If she fails, she refuses to talk to Joyce. She gets 3 hits, she's able to speak to him. This was the real roll right here, because her failing this would have meant she would have just walked away from him. Possibly for good, possibly not, I'm not sure. I take their loyalty 6 into account as her being willing to give him a chance at all seeing as he literally tried to enslave Kenji which was intensely hosed up, but she also saw him being capable of empathy so she decided to give him one last chance as she argued with Dolphin on his behalf. Krupa is naive and wants to see the best in people. Lucky for her, Joyce actually wants to change, though what that change will look like in the future is up in the air. Probably a positive one though, or at least more positive than he's been before.

Some rolls. Joyce has 5 charisma + 5 etiquette + 2 for the bruise + 2 for looking pathetic + 2 item bonus - 1 for injuries from stun (he never rested to recover, too busy hiking and none from his physical wounds because he didn't eat enough damage). Krupa has charisma 5 + etiquette 1. Joyce gets 6 hits and Krupa gets 4. She still loves him, but she doesn't like him. She knows that in any social encounter, she's going to fail because eventually he'll convince her of anything. Unbeknownst to Joyce and Krupa, this is because her parents are clinical narcissists and she's the golden child which means she gets all of the positive attention. So they constantly either praise or gaslight her which is why she'll probably believe anything if someone challenges her view of reality. She's not really equipped to deal with confrontation, which is why Dolphin took notice of her for confronting her parents. Krupa thought that her parents abusing Saanvi and her then standing up to them was impossible until she did it. And that realization made for fertile ground for Dolphin to mentor her as her idea of what was possible exploded in size.

Krupa rolls her heal spell with magic 3 + spellcasting 3 + Dolphin healing bonus 2. She gets 1 hit. He just has some scratches left. She rolls charisma 5 + will 5 and gets 4 hits, no drain.

She decides not to engage in social rolls/combat with Joyce. His task is to show her that he's changed, not tell her. And not as a single, big display, but to make real changes in his life and stay changed.

Joyce rolls composure and gets 1 hit for peace with Dove. He is extremely confused about his role as nobility, their history of violence and his role in the family as the sole child of nobility who is half of a pair to bring together two families of apparently terrible adults. He can't square it with himself and has mixed feelings. This will have effects down the road.

Finally, he meets Olisha. He looks thoroughly disheveled, but he knows what to do. He's going to ask for a shovel so he can dig the hole for a shame pole. He's going to own what he did. Olisha stops him. I roll her loyalty x 2 for Kenji, which is 1, to see if her esteem goes up for him. Critical glitch. Nope. He loses Olisha as a contact. She'll still be around, but she's washed her hands of him. Even him punching Joyce doesn't make up for the fact that he went behind her back it seems. They verbally spar for a bit, but it's more gentile since Olisha is drank way too much. Joyce has 10 dice for etiquette, Olisha has 8 - 2 for being nauseous and also working on that hangover. Joyce gets a 3 and Olisha gets 1 hit and a glitch.

I play this as Joyce playing it straight. He admits fault and owns his actions, but doesn't humiliate himself before Olisha. He still doesn't like her. He still doesn't believe that she's right. Instead he believes that she's primarily driven by petty cruelty. Their entire dynamic up until now was him being pretentious and her poking holes in that pretention, but now the dynamic shifted and she's not feeling good enough to adapt.

End scene.

Kenji loses Olisha as a contact.

Ice Phisherman fucked around with this message at Mar 20, 2019 around 04:46

Ice Phisherman
Apr 12, 2007


Fuzzy and Jayvon - Saturday, August 3rd, 2075 – Late afternoon – Blake Island

Fuzzy had enjoyed time with her friends, plenty of trash had been picked up and she'd even briefly visited Sasha, but she was exhausted from learning her spells. All she could manage was a kiss a promise to help Fuzzy learn her own spells tomorrow before going into her cabin to pass out.

However, something else was on Fuzzy's mind. Kenji had pulled her aside and explained that she and Sasha had been targeted by Human Nation and it was Jayvon who learned about it. The threat was over and it left her feeling strange. She was glad that she didn't suddenly get jumped with Sasha and Julian by thirty gang members during a protest. If they'd been cornered it would have gotten ugly. So that was why they took a boat from Council Island to school that day.

It concerned Fuzzy that there were people talking about her and especially Sasha, but those people had been defeated without a single swing of her staff or throwing a single punch. So Fuzzy walked to the docks and sat down as the school boat approached. She watched as people departed and all eyes were on her. People whispered and she overheard about how she'd defeated a toxic spirit from the lips of others. No one approached, though some hung around for a while in hopes that she might talk to them. No, she waited for Jayvon who was the last off the boat as he needed to use his crutches. She approached him as others watched.

"Hey," she said.

"Oh hey," he said, happily, "Good to see you're in one piece. I saw you on the news. That was impressive stuff."

She shrugged a little.

"I guess," she said.

"You guess?" he said, and barked out a laugh, "You fight and beat a toxic fire spirit with no scratch on you and you guess that's impressive? It makes me wonder what's actually impressive. You know near everyone on the boat was talking about what you did?"

Fuzzy frowned in response. She didn't really care about that.

"Okay," she said, "Can we talk?"

Jayvon raised an eyebrow and steadied himself on his crutches.

"You beggin' off training me or something?" he asked.

"What?" she asked, "No."

She looked at the conspicuously large number of students who hung around and she remembered how Kenji worried about being spied on. One of the security crew walked off the boat and Fuzzy stopped her. He smiled at her and nodded.

"Hello Miss Smith," he said, respectfully, "What can I do for you?"

"Can you make sure we're not overheard for uh...Two minutes?" she asked, "I'd really appreciate it."

"For you? Sure," he said, with a knowing grin, "There's a small office on the boat that we rigged against magic. I'll let you in."

And so Fuzzy, Jayvon and the security officer went back onto the boat and he let them into the office. It was tiny and had all sorts of monitors on it, though Fuzzy didn't pay attention to them. Instead she paid attention to Jayvon as the door closed.

"What's up?" asked Jayvon.

"Are you um...How did you know about uh...Sasha and me?" she asked.

"What about you two?" he asked in response.

"About um...Getting jumped?" she asked, nervously.

Jayvon's mouth made a little O as he understood, and he nodded his head.

"Kenji tell you?" he asked.

"Yeah," she said.

He steadied himself on his crutches as he thought of a response.

"Well I suppose that you got lucky," he said, "I needed someone to train me on the island or I wouldn't be able to go to school this year, or at least not until after Christmas and that’s if there was a spot open. My physical therapy sessions take a long time and then there are the checkups to make sure that what’s left of my body isn’t going to reject the tech again.”

He trailed off for a moment before he came back to the conversation.

“Anyway, this is pretty standard corporate hiring stuff for someone freelancing,” he continued, “You're close to my size and you were pretty much the only person who might reasonably work for my needs. It was down to the wire whether I'd actually show up this year or not or at least be in as late as next semester. I got cleared, had someone research you and talk of you turned up on a bunch of human supremacist boards and chat rooms. I had people do some more digging and they were planning to kick your head in along with anyone with you. I told Coach Bolt, who I met through the matrix and we both went to Julian. And then he just took you out of the way, but he just told me everything would be okay, so I thought I'd ask some cool folks to show up and they did just in case. Not for me, but because they heard about what you do."

"What I do?" asked Fuzzy.

"You punch Nazis and lovely corp princesses," said Jayvon.

Fuzzy had no idea what a not see was, but he knew he was talking about Minuet.
"Those people that showed up? Are they a gang too?" asked Fuzzy.

"What? No," he said, "People might say that about them, but no, they're not a gang. Maybe I'll introduce you at some point, but things are weird and bad in the metroplex lately from what I hear and I promised Julian not to involve you. Maybe I'll tell you later if you're really interested, but not right now. I don't want to break a promise."

Fuzzy's knuckles whitened in anger as she made fists. She was angry and had a hard time understanding why.

"You didn't tell me," she said.

"No, I didn't want you feeling like you should train me because you felt like you owed me. Me swooping out of nowhere and claiming you owed me felt weird, so I didn't do that," he said, "It was already a little weird when I tried on my own. I'm better with people through the matrix when I'm not talking in real time. I like being able to think about what I'm saying before I say it."

"I wish you'd told me," she said.

"Why?" he asked.

Fuzzy tried to think of why she wanted to know and arrived at the answer.

"So I could've done something instead of being saved," she said.

Jayvon winced, but nodded his acceptance.

"Yeah, I get that," he said, "If it makes any difference, this wasn't personal. It wasn't about you exactly. It was more that I didn't want to see someone get stomped by fascists. That's all."

"I don't know what a fascist is," she said.

That took him aback and he frowned.

"You've been punching them," he said, "And hitting them with that stick of yours."

"lovely people?" she asked, her tone confused.

"Well yeah, but a specific type of lovely people," he said, "I mean I'll explain later if you want, but look, I was a lot like you for a while, but a jerk. I was a bad person. For the life that I lived I got my entire body stomped and then some. It's why most of me below the neck is mechanical now. Sometimes you don't win. Sometimes you lose hard. If I'm being honest with myself, I deserved to lose for what I've done in life, but I don't think anyone deserves to lose most of their body and if they jumped you, then something bad was going to happen. I learned about the worst lesson someone can learn and live through it. I just didn't want someone else getting stomped like I did or worse. That's all."

Fuzzy quietly considered this for a while and slowly she uncurled her fists.

"So it wasn't you um...Looking for me specifically?" she asked, critically.

"Uh, no," he said, awkwardly, "You just fit my needs is all and I found out people were looking for you. Bad people. I could've had someone come to you and make an offer and make a big hullabaloo about what everything, but I didn't want to put on airs. The rest was so out of my hands that I didn't know if anything was taken seriously. I'm weird sometimes since my uh...Kicking. Sorry."

"It's okay," she said, "I'm sorry you got uh...Kicked."

Jayvon nodded once and said nothing more about the subject.

"Hey, do you want to go on a walk?" asked Fuzzy.

"I thought we were starting training after you learned your spell," said Jayvon.

"No, I mean just on a normal walk," said Fuzzy, "We were going to do it eventually anyway, but I mean...Yeah, just a normal walk."

Jayvon smiled at her.

"I'll hobble with you, sure. If you don't mind going slow," he said.

"Slow is okay," she said.

"Then you walk and I'll hobble. I guess that means more time to talk," said Jayvon.

Together they left the small office to go on a walk together.

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