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From Out of a Dream [Quest]

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  • #46
    Pull the ladder up and make sure there's nobody else up here who can pull it up or chop it.
    Be certain the upper levels are really empty. Then start dropping rocks on people. Then go down and sword them.


    I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
    Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors

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    • #47
      We have:
      2 votes for Descend
      1 vote for Wait
      1 vote for Make a noise
      2 votes for Something Else - pull up the rope ladder, explore the upper levels, and then attack the bandits below.

      Anyone want to put in another vote or change their stance?
      Last edited by semicasual; 06-28-2015, 05:22 PM.


      On the frontier of the Wild South, there's only one woman with the grit to take on its most dangerous outlaws and bring them Back Alive, or Maybe Dead.

      Avatar by K.S. Brenowitz

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      • #48
        First, you pull up the rope ladder so no one can escape. It wasn’t a sure thing when you arrived, but now you’re certain that only one person is going to walk out of here alive. It’s probably what Himitsu wants, anyway.

        You look up into the stairless stairwell, then over at the lift. Struck by an idea, you climb up and onto the arm of the machine. The wood creaks as you balance yourself on the end of it, hanging over the shaft, and carefully turn around to face back the way you came. As you thought, from this angle you can see a series of landings going up the shaft, each one an access point to another level. You bend your legs and kick off the pulley, launching yourself to the first floor.

        You land in dust and dirt. This whole castle is dusty and dirty, naturally, but the filth you’re standing in now doesn’t come from rocks being dragged around and unwashed men not taking the time to sweep. This is accumulated crud from nobody coming up here in hundreds of years, likely as not. As you stand up and look around you see that the signs of neglect from the ground level are more pronounced up here – at least the bandits cleared away the cobwebs in the places where they lived and worked.

        You jump back down onto the lift, take a moment to gauge the distance to the bottom, and then hop off the lift backwards. You hear a thunderous crashing sound from below as you drop, but your mind remains focused on controlling your fall. A shudder runs through you an instant before you land on the rock pile and roll, stopping on your feet at the base of the heap. You stand up and dust yourself off, none the worse for having fallen onto jagged stones from a height that would break most people.

        Ahead, you can see the torchlit hallway ends in a wall of broken rock and rubble – it appears that at some point in the past, there was a cave-in down here. There is one gap in upper part of the wall – a small one, just large enough for a body to squeeze through. A group of ten men is standing around in front of the wall, brandishing picks, shovels, and hammers, cheering and slapping each other on the back.

        You quickly move to the corner of the wall where hallway meets stairwell, and watch as one of the men – not dressed like a laborer as the others are, and carrying one long and one short sword at his side – steps in front of the group and raises his arms. The workers become quiet.

        “Well, boys, we’ve done it! Weeks of work pays off today. Double rations for everyone!”

        Another cheer goes from the assembled workers.

        “Take a short break. Yan, Jang, go get some food and wine down here, and tell the lifters to drop some wood. When we’re all refreshed, we’ll widen the hole a bit, shore it up, and see what’s on the other side.”

        Two of the men drop their tools and start walking in your direction, headed for the shaft. The leader-figure goes to a folding chair placed at one side of the hall, while the others take their ease on the floor.

        What now?
        • Charge. This will be slaughter. Most of them aren’t armed with real weapons, they’re not alert, they’re tired from digging, and there is enough space to swing Cleaver around if you keep away from the walls.
        • Extinguish the torches. You have ways of seeing in the dark, and it’s a pretty safe bet that none of them do. With some effort, you could get past them all without a fight… or get an edge in a fight.
        • Reveal yourself. You’re curious to know what this is about – you’ll probably still have to kill them all anyway once they figure out that you butchered the “lifters” and pulled up the ladder to trap them down here, but maybe if you talk to the leader you can learn something first.
        • Something else?
        Last edited by semicasual; 06-29-2015, 11:40 AM.


        On the frontier of the Wild South, there's only one woman with the grit to take on its most dangerous outlaws and bring them Back Alive, or Maybe Dead.

        Avatar by K.S. Brenowitz

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        • #49
          Charge!

          The sooner you kill everyone, the sooner you can get back to drinking and sleeping. You (or someone else) can figure out what they found after the bandits are dead.



          I write things.

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          • #50
            Figuring out what's going on is Himitsu's job. He's the one who wants the crystal thingy. He paid us to get rid of them, so that's what we do, with or without darkness.


            I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
            Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors

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            • #51
              >Reveal yourself. You're going to kill them all anyway. Figuring out some interesting details could at least give you a good story to tell at a bar counter. Or provide for a good pillow-talk tale. Either way.


              "Chicanery-No: If a player uses this Charm in an abusive or exploitative manner, the ST may punch him right in the goddamn face." --TheDementedOne

              "Happiness is very brittle and short-lived in the Exalted community, because ressentiment is our cultural touchstone." --Gayo

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              • #52
                Reveal yourself. You’re curious to know what this is about – you’ll probably still have to kill them all anyway once they figure out that you butchered the “lifters” and pulled up the ladder to trap them down here, but maybe if you talk to the leader you can learn something first.

                "Yeah, that's the ticket."


                Like my Avatar? Courtesy of Jen! : Anybody want their characters to be experimented on ? post 98
                An Exalt is never unarmed.

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                • #53
                  You step around the corner in time to scare the living daylights out of Jang and Yan. Both of them do a double take when they see you and all of your weapons. You’re not sure if they’re able to see the traces of blood on your brigandine or hair in this light – probably not, but you don’t imagine their reaction would be any more surprised. Both of them open their mouths to ask a question or let out a curse, but you speak over them - “I’m here to see the boss.” That and a hard glare as you push past shuts them up.

                  The other miners have noticed you, and are watching you with a mixture of interest and nervousness. None of them rise from their seats, but some of them start grabbing their tools. The one you presume to be the leader rises from his chair as you approach.

                  “Who are you? How did you get down here?” he says, putting a hand to his longer sword. He is not in a battle-ready stance – this is an implied threat, not an imminent attack. You cross your arms to show you don’t care and begin staring him down.

                  “Himitsu sent me,” you say, avoiding his questions.*

                  He meets your gaze without blinking. “I’ll tell you what I told the last lackey – we’re not done down here. Go back and tell your master we’ll tell him when we’ve found it.”**

                  You set your jaw, trying not to show surprise or anything else. “…and the trade caravans?”

                  He takes his hand off his weapon and makes an exaggerated shrug. “Hey, we’ve got to eat too. Or are we supposed to starve until we get paid?” The miners rumble in agreement. “Now, is that all? Or do you plan to stand around and look tough?” He snorts. “We’re not working any faster, if that’s the idea. Maybe if you drop all those knives and pick up a shovel.”

                  Well, now. How do you answer that?
                  • Attack. You’ve learned all you need to, and you’ve got a job to finish.
                  • Make a show of assenting, and leave the pit. If you’re quick, you can be back up on the ground floor landing before they notice the ladder’s gone, and continue this engagement from there.
                  • Keep fishing. Maybe you can get him to spill more secrets if you pretend to know what he’s talking about.
                  • Something else? (Suggest custom action or dialogue)
                  *
                  The way you see it, there’s only one reason why an armed gang would start digging under a castle, and that’s if they know there’s treasure. But why this castle, and why now? Maybe they work for another scav lord, one of Himitsu’s rivals – wouldn’t be the first turf war you’ve stepped in. Or maybe they work for Himitsu, who doesn’t like the way they operate or thinks it’ll be cheaper to pay one man to get the Stone instead of twenty-something. Or maybe, by sheer luck, they’re just some toughs who just happen to be here now. Seeing how they react to Himitsu’s name might tell you a lot.


                  **
                  Hey, what do you know? It worked.



                  On the frontier of the Wild South, there's only one woman with the grit to take on its most dangerous outlaws and bring them Back Alive, or Maybe Dead.

                  Avatar by K.S. Brenowitz

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Go Fish!

                    ((Still trying to get a handle on Nergui's personality. He is apparently more inquisitive than he looks. ))
                    Last edited by wonderandawe; 06-30-2015, 10:11 AM.


                    I write things.

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                    • #55
                      >Keep fishing. I mean, it's not like it's new news that a scab lord might pay to kill his operations crew to avoid paying them. But you didn't think it was that kind of deal. And if they ARE working for him and he kills them to get out of payment, it tells you about the kind of double cross he might pull on YOU.


                      "Chicanery-No: If a player uses this Charm in an abusive or exploitative manner, the ST may punch him right in the goddamn face." --TheDementedOne

                      "Happiness is very brittle and short-lived in the Exalted community, because ressentiment is our cultural touchstone." --Gayo

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        Hm.... yeah definitely don't want him to pull this on us. Then again, does he know we're a Solar? Who would he hire to take us out? He did give us a down-payment already tho.
                        Best find out if these guys are bluffing. Fish. See how much familiarity and knowledge of HImitsu they have.


                        I am extremely literal-minded and always write very literally. If I don't say something explicitly, please never assume I implied it. The only exception is if I try to joke.
                        Exalted name-generators, Infernal and 1E-2.5E homebrew from many authors

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Keep fishing. Himitsu's coin spends like anyone else's, but I don't like being a dupe. Let's know more about the man when we go back to collect.


                          Share your wonders in The Artifact and Evocation Workshop

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                          • #58
                            Bah. I say Attack, but keep the boss alive long enough to get a description of the object. We can use Cleaver to knock down that wall they were working on, check if the object's there or in the miners' things, then go back and report.

                            If we don't find the thingy, well, Himitsu can always hire some more workers/bandits. Not our problem.

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                            • #59
                              “Maybe I should,” you answer. “You can’t work any slower.” The leader bristles as you continue talking. “My master made certain promises, and he’s good for them. Are you?”

                              “Your master promised loot*. You see any of that around here?” he snaps. “This place has been picked clean, except for the parts nobody can reach. So we’re stuck out here with no money, no supplies, and we’re damn tired of your complaining.”

                              “Right. So, you raid to make ends meet. Was that part of our deal?”

                              “You said no guards and no army hassling us while we work**.” He goes back to his ‘aloof and flippant’ stance. “Not our fault if you didn’t think that through. What’d you expect? That we’d start farming?”

                              “Don’t give me that shit,” you say, raising your voice. “How long does it take to dig a fucking tunnel!?” You lower your arms and take a step closer. “Think you’ll be done this month? Or do you want to wait until Earth so you can rob the planters coming through?”

                              He tenses and his hand goes to his sword again. You tense up too, but you force yourself to keep your arms at your side and your gaze steady. There is a moment of silence and everyone watches, unsure if a fight is about to break out. Finally, he relaxes, and so does everyone else. “I told you…” he pronounces each word slowly and deliberately. “We will tell you when we’ve found it.”

                              “Uh, hey, chief?” You glance back and see Yan, or possibly Jang, standing just behind you on your left.

                              “What?” asks the chief, angry at the interruption or maybe just with you.

                              “Somebody pulled up the ladder.”

                              The leader’s expression of simmering rage changes to one of complete surprise. “What? Why would…“ he stops as his mind catches up to his mouth. His gaze turns away from his flunkey and back to you. “Ah. So that’s how it is, is it?”

                              About as quickly as you can blink, his long sword is drawn and in his left hand. He holds it in a defensive posture while he draws his short sword with his right hand. “You’re going back to Himitsu in a box,” he growls. “A small one.”

                              Better think fast.
                              • Cleave everyone. You’re surrounded by enemies, but that just means you won’t miss a swing.
                              • Only kill the boss. Some quick work with Reaching Fist will finish the bandit/scavenger/miner leader, and you can brandish his mutilated corpse at the others to make them kowtow.
                              • Deliver a beating. Half the reason you carry Vortex is around is so you can break people without bleeding them out. When the boss and anyone else who thinks they can take you is nursing bruises and broken bones, you can ask some more questions.
                              • Retreat. You’re surrounded by enemies, and this time you have no element of surprise. Fight smart – grab Jang or Yan or whoever it is behind you, throw them at the leader, and fly back to the ground floor landing.
                              • Something else?

                              *
                              That’s a common arrangement with magi, collectors, and scav lords who are too rich to care about silver. They offer a finder’s fee, then let the little people sort through the little treasures and bring back only the biggest and rarest stuff for their hoards. It can pay pretty well if you’re a cutthroat kind of little person.

                              **
                              Also a common arrangement. Sometimes the difference between mercs, bandits, and scavengers is only which side you’re on.
                              Last edited by semicasual; 07-09-2015, 05:10 PM.


                              On the frontier of the Wild South, there's only one woman with the grit to take on its most dangerous outlaws and bring them Back Alive, or Maybe Dead.

                              Avatar by K.S. Brenowitz

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Cleave Everyone

                                Leave one alive to show you what they found.


                                I write things.

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