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Zybourne Clock
Oct 25, 2011

Poke me.

megane posted:

When faced with an evil duplicate of yourself, step one is always to C) sock yourself in the face. That's just common sense, even babies know it.

Can't argue with this logic. C.

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WereGoat
Apr 28, 2017



That sounds like a C-mendous idea. A mimic might mimic-punch you, but their clone body will be weak and smooshy, ripe for pulping.

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005

But People have fears that beasts do not. Questions, too.


Come on now, C. Obviously.

Deadmeat5150
Nov 21, 2005

OLD MAN YELLS AT CLAN


C of course. That'll teach us to accidently swallow a tiny evil clone of us.

Hexenritter
May 20, 2001

Buncha slack-jawed faggots around here

C of course, and then quickly lift our other hand, fingers extended, so as to block the inevitable double eye poke retaliation., just like Ashy Slashy the elders teach.

Zybourne Clock
Oct 25, 2011

Poke me.

The voting phase has ended! It looks like option C - punch our evil clone in the face, has won. Both Deadmeat5150 and Hexenritter* have indicated they wish to abstain from GM-ing, so the next GM will be Dog Kisser.

(* Hexenritter, I skipped you based on what you said in your first post of the thread. If this is in error, please say so and you'll get to GM after Dog Kisser).

e: To simplify things a bit, I've edited the table of contents so that it now has the latest version of the castle's map.

Zybourne Clock fucked around with this message at Feb 10, 2018 around 11:42

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005

But People have fears that beasts do not. Questions, too.


Well used to supernatural attacks on your person, you don't rise to the Doppelganger’s bait. Instead, without even pausing to wipe the flecks of vomit from your mouth, you fire off a straight right jab, skin smouldering with contained energy. While generally you kept your distance in your battles with the legions of the dead, you'd been fortunate enough to receive training from a master of close quarters combat.
    1A. Breaker Wallace
    A wiry brute of a man, he'd taught you long ago that in a fight, nothing was disallowed. Your strikes are reckless and brutal, rendering them particularly effective against creatures slow enough for you to pound.
    1B. Alirute the Zephyr
    A shrivelled old crone, she'd long ago been a master of the Path of Thirty Steps, a flowery, distracting martial art based on speed and precision blows.
    1C. Kingol Sharkbeard
    A man - if you could call him a man - that fought the darkness and lost, and yet refused to quit. Massively warped and corrupted, his strange body has led to the development of an equally strange set of techniques.
    1D. Bruce
    A drunkard you first encountered after he single handedly beat down a room of challengers. His techniques are simple, but undeniably effective.

Whichever you'd studied under, they hadn't prepared you for this. Where your fist would have made contact with the skull of an ordinary creature, it sank into the surface of the smiling demon's too-familiar face. Her skull split open like a flower, drawing your hand deeper before clamping shut around your lower arm. You reel in agony, but you close your fist around the fleshy tendrils within its distorted skull. It has the grace to look concerned as it realizes you are no mere layman, and now it tries to pull away from you - too late.

You speak the words, invoking in your trapped fist the spirit of the Martyr Cleon, who perished in the Shrinking Box. His insane, claustrophobic ghost rages against the confines of the shapeshifter’s jaws, expanding its head grotesquely. And then, at last, the pressure is too much, and it bursts, releasing the howling soulflames to disperse into the hall. You crush the twitching remains of the Doppelganger then slump back against the wall. It had been one hell of a day, so far, and things weren't going quite as you expected. You never thought this would be easy, but you also didn't expect to be under attack so quickly. Dracula surely wished you dead - and yet, he hadn't killed you back there, and he could have.

Well, that would have to be a matter for later consideration, because you had more pressing problems in the meantime. For one thing, that Fallen nun. To hear her speak, she was the one who had infected you with that parasite, for which she was duly apologetic… but on the other hand, you felt weaker and hungrier now than you had before her ministrations. It grieved you to think that your singular ally could be another fiendish trap of Dracul’s.
    2A. Forgive Her
    She'd tried her best to feed you, using whatever she could scrounge up - it wasn't as though she needed to eat, after all. Her kindness would sate you for now.
    2B. Harden Your Heart
    A trick, or a foolish ghost trapped by the dark one. Either way, she could not be trusted - no one here could. Leave her behind to her dark fate.
    1C. Vanquish Her
    That had been deliberate, for how could it not be so? Find her and end her unlife - you should have done it earlier.

Tidying yourself up as much as possible under the circumstances, you continued your exploration. Another door opened to reveal a cross-shaped room with alabaster pedestals in each alcove. Four in all, their surfaces concaved into shallow bowls filled with water. Peering through the crystal-clear surface of the liquid, you spied a crystalline disk at the center of each bowl. Going counter-clockwise from the door, the disks were topaz, ruby, emerald, and jet, and they caught the light as though a strange energy moved within them. Between them, in the center of the room, were four shallow, disk-shaped indentations.

It didn't take a professional monster hunter to know that the disks had to be fitted into the divots in a particular order to trigger some mechanism, but it DID take one to know that it was highly suspicious. You paused a moment to consider your plan of action.
    3A. Recall Gem Lore
    That was it you'd learned about the properties of gems again? Were the specific materials important, or merely color coding?
    3B. Put Them In A Random Order
    Well, why not? What's the worst that could happen?
    3C. Summon a Wraith with The Remembered Flame Avenges
    No one said they had to be used to kill. Consult an ancestor or a wise predecessor.
    3D. Twist the Magic with The Ember Ignites a Thousand Flames
    Seize the innate magic and set it ablaze, then see what happens.
    3E. Drink The Water
    It looks clean and pure, and your mouth is feeling sore and acidic from your earlier trials.

Dog Kisser fucked around with this message at Feb 11, 2018 around 18:14

dont be mean to me
May 2, 2007

I'm interplanetary, bitch
Let's go to Mars




1 C
2 A
3 C

Prince of Space
Apr 17, 2016



Dinosaur Gum

1C
2B
3A

MinutePirateBug
Mar 4, 2013


1. D
2. C
3. B

Nyaa
Jan 7, 2010

Q.E.D.



1C. Mutate body martial art for our extra eyeball to headbutt the foe.

2A. Thanks for the cool eyeball.

3E. Get more mutation

Rockopolis
Dec 21, 2012

I MAKE FUN OF QUEER STORYGAMES BECAUSE I HAVE NOTHING BETTER TO DO WITH MY LIFE THAN MAKE OTHER PEOPLE CRY

I can't understand these kinds of games, and not getting it bugs me almost as much as me being weird


D
C
C

WereGoat
Apr 28, 2017



C
A
A

Bee Bonk
Feb 19, 2011



C
A
C

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005

But People have fears that beasts do not. Questions, too.


This is fun! I enjoy how your choices are very different than I expected.

edit: Also added art just for fun

Dog Kisser fucked around with this message at Feb 11, 2018 around 17:49

Swedish Thaumocracy
Jul 11, 2006

Strength of >800 Men
Honor of 0


Grimey Drawer

CAA

Slaan
Mar 16, 2009

Why, yes,
I will poke your Gushing Spring Point!


Pillbug

DAA

Disproportionate Orphan
Apr 17, 2009


CAA

Zybourne Clock
Oct 25, 2011

Poke me.

My votes:
1C. (You had me at Sharkbeard)
2A.
3A.

The current vote totals:

1a
1b
1c ||||||||
1d |||

2a ||||||||
2b |
2c ||
2d

3a ||||||
3b |
3c |||
3d
3e|

The voting phase closes in approximately 45 minutes. Unless someone posts before then, I will be the next GM.

Zybourne Clock
Oct 25, 2011

Poke me.

---
There's a saying in the Whitegrave clan. "A drop of sweat expended during training is a drop of blood saved in battle", something all Whitegraves teach their children. When you were just five years old your family members discovered your knack for pyromancy, a skill they wished to nurture. Many a man might recall the careless days of his youth. You only remember hours of practicing incantations, pouring over ancient tomes and accidentally scorching your own body parts. At times your heavy work load left you feeling frustrated and angry with your lot in life.

But the great pressure unduly placed on your shoulders never got to you. Because every day you were given an hour to literally punch the frustration away under the guidance of Kingol Sharkbeard, a master pugilist and one of your personal teachers. The half-man-half-shark made you run laps, wrestle punching bags and punch large slabs of meat blindfolded. Not only were his lessons fun, they made you feel alive. But as your studies began to take more of your time, you slowly started to see less of your teacher.

Two weeks before you left on your quest to find Dracula's castle, your former master showed up to your house. Of course you were happy to see him, but it did not take you long to notice how the passage of time had taken a toll on him. In your mind he was still a fierce warrior, but your eyes told a different story. He looked old and frail.

"Take me with you," he said. "you're going to need all the allies you can get in that accursed place. I might be past my prime, but that doesn't mean I can't be of use".

It took you a lot of time and patience to convince the old man to stay behind, explaining to him you could never forgive yourself if he died in that place.
---

There's no doubt in your mind this puzzle is a trap; the only uncertainty here is what the trap actually does. Still, turning back to the Lingering Halls and working your way down from there is not an option. You could actually do that, but there's no reason to assume that you'd find fewer troubles on your path. That, and even though you've decided to forgive her, you'd rather not walk into Esmeralda the skeletal nun right now. There's nothing to it but to walk the shortest path, even if it is perilous.

You carefully approach the bowl containing the ruby. Using the metal chain you found earlier, you manage to remove the disk from the pedestal. Still dripping wet with water, you hold the disk in front of your eye like one would hold a magnifying glass. Other than its unusual shape and the strange energy that is projected from it, the ruby disk appears to be an otherwise typical gemstone. As you collect the other disks, you begin to notice something unusual. They all seem to share a certain energy between them. But the 'bond' between the topaz and jet somehow feels different from the bond between the ruby and emerald. Is this the key to the puzzle?

The four pedestals are arranged in the form of a square. You place the gemstone disks in such a way that the invisible 'bonds' between the pair cross over.



As you place the final gemstone on a pedestal...



your heart skips a beath as the stone floor beneath your feet gives way and crumbles into pieces, revealing what appears to be a ladder leaning down a hole. Carefully, you take a peek over the edge to see where it leads.



It appears to be a deep hole, going straight down. To what, you cannot tell. It's too deep and the chamber you're currently in is too dark. But senses other than your sight do provide a hint. Wherever the hole leads, it's a warm and humid place that smells vaguely like a slaughterhouse. What you can see, is something familiar hanging from one of the ladder's lower rungs.



Arcane symbols glittering gently in the darkness, it is instantly recognizable as a lost page from your spellbook. Of all places, how did it end up over there? You set foot on the ladder's top rung and prepare to make your way down, when suddenly--



The sound of metal clashing upon stone emanates from behind you. You turn around and see that the door you came in through is now blocked off by a heavy iron portcullis. Was that there when you first came in? It is an immaterial question, because mere seconds later you nearly lose your footing and almost fall to the ground when the entire room begins to shake violently. Liquid begins to seep down from all four pedestals. Water, at first, but then the liquid takes on an unusual hue and viscosity.



Droplets fall to floor and leave red splatter marks. It's impossible to mistake it for anything else than blood.

As the room continuous to rumble, more and more blood begins to seep out of the pedestals. At first a trickle, but the flow rapidly increases until it gushes out like a fountain. Most of the room's floor is a deep shade of crimson by the time you notice it is warm to the touch, as if it was bleeding from a fresh wound. You look down the ladder, and see that the room below you also begins to flood. It dawns on you that you are trapped like a rat in a cage, and that you're going to drown before long if you don't make your escape sooner than later. Without thinking, your body involuntarily leaps into action.

1. A page of your spell book is within reach. But climbing down to grab it takes away time you could use to escape this trap. Do you try to grab the page?
A. Yes. I entered Dracula's castle with a book full of spells, and now I have only two left. I grab that page. My long-term survival depends on it.
B. drat it. Dracula is toying with me! Well, I won't play along. I leave it behind and try to focus on my survival.

2. How will you try to escape this trap?
A. I intentionally climb down the ladder to the room below which is currently rapidly filling up with blood, and look around for a way to escape.
B. Using all of my strength, I attempt to lift the portcullis and make my way back to the Lingering Halls.
C. The pedestals currently overflowing with blood are clearly magical in nature. When I first entered this room, their surfaces were hollowed out into shallows bowls filled with water. I cast The Ember Ignites a Thousand Flames on the pedestals, changing the nature of their magic into something else. I'm not sure what will happen, or if it will do me any good, but I'm desperate.
D. I call out for Esmeralda and pray she can hear me. She's... not evil. Right? I hope my trust in her is not misplaced.
E. Something else. Write-in.

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005

But People have fears that beasts do not. Questions, too.


1A2A

Reckless is my middle name. One of my middle names, anyhow.

Prince of Space
Apr 17, 2016



Dinosaur Gum

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

dont be mean to me
May 2, 2007

I'm interplanetary, bitch
Let's go to Mars




Prince of Space posted:

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

This.

Deadmeat5150
Nov 21, 2005

OLD MAN YELLS AT CLAN


Prince of Space posted:

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

Exactly what I was thinking.

MinutePirateBug
Mar 4, 2013


1B
2C

Nyaa
Jan 7, 2010

Q.E.D.



1B. Silly Dracular, my book only have TWO SPEELS~! The rest are jokes about how dumb you are!
C. Burn the blood. Burn it all into maybe dangerous blood fume. Less blood for dumcula

Lord Zedd-Repulsa
Jul 21, 2007

Devour a good book.



Prince of Space posted:

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

Let's hope we can get the page before it gets covered in blood.

WereGoat
Apr 28, 2017



Prince of Space posted:

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

Yessssss

Swedish Thaumocracy
Jul 11, 2006

Strength of >800 Men
Honor of 0


Grimey Drawer

Prince of Space posted:

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

This will surely save our hide!

Rockopolis
Dec 21, 2012

I MAKE FUN OF QUEER STORYGAMES BECAUSE I HAVE NOTHING BETTER TO DO WITH MY LIFE THAN MAKE OTHER PEOPLE CRY

I can't understand these kinds of games, and not getting it bugs me almost as much as me being weird


1A: Grab spell
2F: Die, but remember spell when you escape some other way

We give no fucks about risking death.

Disproportionate Orphan
Apr 17, 2009


Prince of Space posted:

That missing page from our spellbook contains the spell we need to overcome this trap. Dracula is certainly toying with us.

1A Grab that page
1E Use that spell

This is the only way to do it.

Zybourne Clock
Oct 25, 2011

Poke me.

It appears there are clear front runners for both questions. Right now we're slated to grab that page (1A) and instantly cast the spell written on it (2e), hoping that it is actually useful in this situation. Let's hope it isn't just a plain fireball spell, then!

Our next GM is Disproportionate Orphan.

Disproportionate Orphan
Apr 17, 2009


You release your feet and slide down the ladder quickly, your hands getting splinters from the rotting oak ladder. Blood from your hand trickles down, mere drops in the ocean of blood. You reach the bottom rung, a full two floors down and snatch the spell just before the blood rises up to that rung. The blood rises quickly, going from the rung to your feet, and up past your ankles. A calm, soothing voice in your head speaks: "Stay. Be here. Bathe in it. Live in it." It repeats over and over again. The only thing that you can do to stop it is to chant the spell you picked up, incessantly, mindlessly.

Suddenly, the blood starts getting hot. You climb up instinctively, but the ladder breaks in half, halting your progress. Luckily for you, you are above the blood. As it bubbles, it starts to cauterize, and something starts rising. Flames. No... a creature.



The Flame Knight's steed, Hyrr Logi! You jump on, and it takes you out of the room. As you ride to your destination, you remember that this is only one of three spells that work together: Flame Knight's Steed, Lance, and Helm. You recall if all three are cast at once, it acts as a powerful ritual. Too bad you only have a third of what you need. The Steed by itself is summoned to travel in a specific manner:





You're dropped unceremoniously into a dark room. There is a metal desk in the center of the room with a faint candle light, surrounded by cages. There is a rusty metal key on the table, some sealed documents, a quill, ink, and wax seals. You can see the bones of hounds, chickens, and several other dead animals inside of the cages. Not one human as far as you can tell. There is a door leading out to the left, as well as a rope leading up. It's too dark to see where it leads.

Suddenly, you see several sets of glowing red eyes from one of the cages. It seems that there was life after all, though after you see what it is, you're not sure if it was better off dead. A rat king, tails tied together, stares at you from inside of one of the cells. You hear a voice inside of your head, high pitched and wheedling.

"WE BESEECH THEE, INTERLOPER. DRACULA HAS LOCKED US AWAY. USE THE KEY TO FREE US, AND WE SHALL GRANT YOU A GREAT BOON. WE KNOW MUCH OF THE CASTLE, ITS DENIZENS, AND THE TREASURES WITHIN." As it speaks in your mind, the Rat King chitters and writhes, little hands banging against the cage door.

1. Do you take the Rat King up on its offer?

A. An enemy of my enemy is my friend. I have the key, I'll open the cage.
B. I'm not letting out this THING out for just a vague boon. I'll negotiate better terms. If you choose this, say what these terms are.
C. Oh, I'll release it alright. I can easily kill this abomination and take its souls.
D. Leave them to their fate. Say whether you go up the rope or out the door.

2. Do you wish to search the room further? Choosing multiple options is valid here.
A. No. I'm here to kill Dracula, not gently caress around. Do what I need to do, then get out.
B. Search? No. I'm going to take everything I possibly can from the desk, though.
C. I'm curious about these animal cages. Looking around the bones of dead animals seems like a smart idea.
D. Read the documents, and look for any spells hidden among them.
E. Something else. Say what it is.

Disproportionate Orphan fucked around with this message at Feb 14, 2018 around 02:19

Disproportionate Orphan
Apr 17, 2009


That was a little weird, I suppose, but I hope it's enjoyable!

Prince of Space
Apr 17, 2016



Dinosaur Gum

1B "Swear fealty to me, Rat King."
2B Take Dracula's wax seal and read his letters.

Nyaa
Jan 7, 2010

Q.E.D.



1B. Soup
2E. Find more Soup.

Rockopolis
Dec 21, 2012

I MAKE FUN OF QUEER STORYGAMES BECAUSE I HAVE NOTHING BETTER TO DO WITH MY LIFE THAN MAKE OTHER PEOPLE CRY

I can't understand these kinds of games, and not getting it bugs me almost as much as me being weird


A
D

No reason not to. What have you got to worry about, death?

Dog Kisser
Mar 30, 2005

But People have fears that beasts do not. Questions, too.


Prince of Space posted:

1B "Swear fealty to me, Rat King."
2B Take Dracula's wax seal and read his letters.

Sure!

Slaan
Mar 16, 2009

Why, yes,
I will poke your Gushing Spring Point!


Pillbug

D/Door, D

We don't have time or trust enough for this. Look for spells and keep moving

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Zybourne Clock
Oct 25, 2011

Poke me.

Rockopolis posted:

No reason not to. What have you got to worry about, death?

Although it's certainly possible (and hilarious) to Mr. Bean our way through the castle, that's an unintended consequence of having a mechanic that assures the game will end in an unknown but finite number of turns rather than the main character realizing she can just load up a save state whenever things go pear shaped

1B. Point me to Dracula's armory first, then we'll talk.
2B.

I will abstain from GM-ing this round, so Slaan will be the next GM if I'm the last to vote before the voting phase ends.

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