Poisoning the Well.   Posted by Segev Stormlord.Group: 0
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 556 posts
Thu 27 Jun 2013
at 22:54
Re: Poisoning the Well
Prince Seln comes running up as Azalea finishes commenting on the demonic nature of this infection. "Doubtless summoned by the Beastmen and sent ahead to waylay us, then. Merlin, please, you've got to take me up to scout them out!" the boy says as he catches his breath.

Ned, meanwhile, is pulling on the collars of his goats, keeping them back from some water. "No, it'll make you sick!" he scolds them. "What's this about a demon?" he adds, bobbing his head to try to adjust his large round straw hat back to a centered position atop it.
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 345 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Sat 29 Jun 2013
at 02:46
Re: Poisoning the Well
Beatrix smirks a bit. "I can cause it to materialize. That should give us enough opportunity to do it in. Should we simply confront it in the tent or draw it out first? I am not sure if we want to give it the opportunity to flee."
Merlin
 player, 329 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Sat 29 Jun 2013
at 19:30
Re: Poisoning the Well
In reply to Beatrix LeSchaye (msg # 70):

"I would suggest a major distraction, such that the Duke and his retainers would want to exit the tent. Perhaps to see some demonstration of healing, song, anything."

Looking to LeSchaye, "Is it bound to the material plane? I can not destroy its soul as of yet, but we can rid its influence in the here and now, certainly."
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 346 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Sun 30 Jun 2013
at 05:22
Re: Poisoning the Well
Beatrix looks thoughtful. "Merlin, make ready to attack; enter the tent once the men come out. Azalea, you will be our distraction; when the men come out, begin your treatment. They will be convinced that it will give them even more energy to work with, so do try and play along with that. I suppose it will be technically true once they've recovered."
After a brief moment the men come piling out, eager for some of Azalea's sweet, sweet medicine. Or something roughly along that venue.
Azalea
 player, 127 posts
Sun 30 Jun 2013
at 12:54
Re: Poisoning the Well

She blinks.

"Uhm... I guess...?"


She has certainly paused in her brewing more than once to take care of someone. She's happy to do it a few more times if it means taking care of the demon.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 559 posts
Tue 2 Jul 2013
at 13:46
Re: Poisoning the Well
The Duke and his inner council gather around Azalea with barely-restrained impatience. The Duke himself, Azalea has difficulty identifying from memory at first; his hair is already half fallen out and his face is cracked and dry with horrid sunburn-like rashes. "Hurry, girl," he says brusquely (though not with cruelty, merely coldness), "We do not have enough time. Cure us so we can get back to planning!"

"While she cures Father and his men, Merlin," says Seln, tugging on the Exalt's cape, "we should be in the air, scouting!"

Meanwhile, in the tent, only Beatrix seems to remain. At least, to mortal sight. The maps and war-figures scattered everywhere make the entire floor space treacherous.
Azalea
 player, 128 posts
Tue 2 Jul 2013
at 14:47
Re: Poisoning the Well

Although she blinks a few times at the sudden surge of patients, she seems practiced to maintaining control and treating people not by order of political or otherwise importance, but progress of illness and critical status of their condition.


She doesn't have to delay her procedure to give the rest time to deal with the demon; it is a lengthy procedure anyway if not sped up by Charms.

Of course, she tries to involve all patients, explaining what she can of each step to prevent anyone from being bored or frustrated.
Merlin
 player, 330 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Tue 2 Jul 2013
at 18:36
Re: Poisoning the Well
In reply to Segev Stormlord (msg # 74):

"Prince Seln, that is a good idea and something we shall see to in a moment. Please go outside and find 6 round stones and take them to the glider. I will be along shortly."

Once Seln leaves Merlin enters the tent as well, stealthily and activates Air Dragon Form.
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 347 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Wed 3 Jul 2013
at 21:29
Re: Poisoning the Well
Beatrix nods to Merlin once she sees him enter, and then draws her sword. Gesturing to the center of the tent, shouts "Materialize, spirit!" in a commanding tone of voice. As she does this she begins radiating light and heavenly authority, and the sign of the full sun appears on her forehead...
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 560 posts
Wed 3 Jul 2013
at 22:03
Re: Poisoning the Well
For a moment, nothing seems to happen except to those who can see the immaterial, as the spirit was about to exit. But it seems to decide to appear dramatically at this bold challenge, and moves itself to the center of the room, right where Beatrix is pointing.

In a flash of green light and a wave of oppressive, painfully dry heat, it erupts into existance, scattering flakes of stone from its outer layer of pebbled flesh everywhere. With two arms, it gesticulates as it declares, "Oh, hohoho, I thought I smelled something else invading my workshop, but this is much more interesting!" With two other arms, it is sculpting something out of hard grey slate that melts in the heat of its grasp to form like putty. It is gaunt, and its cracked flesh drips green blood that stains the ground like boiling acid. Periodically, without thought, it plucks a flake of skin away with a wet, sucking sound, trailing more burning vitriol as it hands the bit of seared stone to the sculpture.

Looking about with a nearly triangular head too loose on its spindly neck and wraith-like shoulders, it takes in Merlin and Beatrix with a laugh that hisses on the inhale and resonates like a forge-fire on the exhale. "A little Chosen of the usurper dares confront the Blood of the Forge. And you bring an ancient bit of primitive magic with you," he says dismissively, twisting his little sculpture momentarily into a mockery of Merlin's armor's mask. "Did you bring the little trollop that seems so fascinated by my work? Is she cowering outside while a real woman appreciates my art?"

Everything organic feels dry, like ancient parchment beneath a desert sun, in this creature's presence. Sound seems oppressed, as if by silent roaring of flames all around, but unheard. When the demon speaks, his words seem to have a weight, like the clicking of a thousand locusts or something more primal and squamous. It almost sounds like a warning in and of itself.
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 349 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Thu 4 Jul 2013
at 03:52
Re: Poisoning the Well
Beatrix cocks an eyebrow. "You speak with the pretense of authority here, so tell me; on whose say-so are you acting here?"
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 561 posts
Thu 4 Jul 2013
at 04:04
Re: Poisoning the Well
"When genius works itself to death, the Blood of the Forge flows forth to witness its magnum opus," proclaims the elongated figure proudly. "But the scent of meddlesome golden girls is also quite alluring. I smell the stench of the Warden's concubine, but she may or may not be the one who has earned my ire. Who are you and with whom do you travel? What impassioned work fires your loins and drives you to grandeur?"

Outside, Seln is gathering the stones Merlin sent him for. He shoves a small handful into Ned's arms. "Go see which of these are what he needs," he orders brusquely, returning to his task. The small goatherd meeps and rushes off with alacrity that puts frightened page-boys to shame.
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 352 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Tue 9 Jul 2013
at 19:28
Re: Poisoning the Well
Beatrix's long, slender ears twitch, and she kicks the flap opening of the tent so that it slides closed, without turning from the demon or taking her eyes off him; hopefully the Goat-Lord Resplendent in Aspect of Yokelhood will take that as a sign to keep out.
To the demon, then, she says, "And what, pray tell, was done to you to fill your mind with such vengeful thoughts?"
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 563 posts
Wed 10 Jul 2013
at 12:55
Re: Poisoning the Well
A slight yelp of surprise is barely audible outside as the tent-flap closes.

"Vengeance?" chuckles the demon disingenously, "I seek no vengeance. If some trollop wishes to cost Creation the potential of its river crossings becoming truly magnificent, what is it to me? I inspire, but you mortals have a saying about leading a yeddim to water and being unable to make them think, so..." he shrugs. It is a particularly unusual motion due to having two sets of arms and thus two sets of shoulders, creating a rippling wave that cracks and sheds some more of his stone skin in wafer-thin flakes. Despite their light landing, the oppressively dry heat wafting off of them as they hit the ground makes them seem heavy.

Observant types might notice the heavy canvas tent flap jostling just a bit, and a crack large enough for a small eye to peer through form between its left edge and the left edge of the tent's opening.
Merlin
 player, 336 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Wed 10 Jul 2013
at 21:26
Re: Poisoning the Well
Merlin smiles behind his mask. This creation was cunning. Then his smile turns to a frown. Was its previous comment about ancient magic meant to intimidate or push a sour spot?

Merlin relaxes his stance ever so slightly.

"You know whom we serve and it is obvious that we travel together."
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 564 posts
Mon 15 Jul 2013
at 20:39
Re: Poisoning the Well
"Oh," chortles the demon, his four arms rattling with flaking stone-skin. He didn't seem to expect that reaction. "You-- you really are new at this. You still believe in that traitorous faker, that he cares about what you're doing!" The object he was molding is crushed and shatters to the floor as he loses control and laughs uproariously.

In motions disjointed and nearly too fast for the eye to see, the laughter stops and the scarecrow-thin body ratchets through the air to stand behind Merlin. "Then where did you get this primitive artifact?" he asks, lower hands caressing the armor the Solar wears.

Somehow, without lengthening, but as if reaching across a much narrower space than is really there, its upper hand caresses Beatrix's hair. "Could be the right color for the trollop..." he muses, his voice carried by the desert heat to both Exalts' ears. "But not the one who denied me my prize. Perhaps you'd like me to sample and judge your quality?"
Azalea
 player, 130 posts
Tue 16 Jul 2013
at 03:42
Re: Poisoning the Well

Azalea continues her work diligently, making sure to explain the interesting parts of the process in layman's terms, and offer amusing tidbits of other parts of medical lore to keep everyone engaged, both to make the process appear quicker and easier than it is and to give time for her companions to work.

She does give the occasional glance that way, though, even if she conceals her worry as she has learned to do so well. Letting your worry show is like an illness, spreading to any patient you handle.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 565 posts
Tue 16 Jul 2013
at 12:43
Re: Poisoning the Well
There is interest in Azalea's explanations, and more than a little morbid fascination with their own condition from her patients (who are also eager to become nurses as long as it involves lots of activity). When she glances over at the tent, she can see Ned crouched down by the closed flap, pushing it just open enough to peer through. He glances back at Prince Salf, who gestures impatiently for the younger boy to go on in while the Prince goes back to scouring the ground for stones.

A dry cough interrupts her thoughts, and a young man in a soldier's tabard offers her what appears to be a surgeon's knife lashed together from a broken and bundled arrow-shaft and one of those slate stones honed to an obsidian edge. His pleased grin as he holds it out to her is marred by a cough that dislodges a couple of teeth.
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 354 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Wed 17 Jul 2013
at 18:50
Re: Poisoning the Well
Beatrix's face, only moments ago a portrait in calm self-control, contorts in horror and fury as the disgusting plague-demon paws her with its filthy, disease-spawning hands. Without another word, her sword whips around in a smooth motion to strike at the offending appendage.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 566 posts
Thu 18 Jul 2013
at 04:04
Re: Poisoning the Well
The demon's arm is knocked away with a painful ringing, the sword's edge grinding on its stone flesh and sending chips flying. The demon leaps back and shakes it in pain, bumping into the tent flap - which yelps a bit in surprise - putting space between himself and the two Solars. Green fire runs like blood down the edge of Beatrix's blade, withering in the golden light of her anima.

"You dare strike me, wench?" hisses the gaunt creature. If its next sounds are words, they are surely foul, but they make no sense to either of the Exalted present. With sickening snapping sounds, like petrified twigs, it snaps off first its damaged arm, then with eye-blurring speed that stop-frames at just the most gruesome breakages, uses its other arms to snap each other off. From each stump grows four more, and it snaps those off, as well, with freshly-grown counterparts. Repeating the process multiple times, as it throws its dismembered sedimentary limbs about the tent, where their flame-bleeding ends root into everything they touch. A bristling forest of nauseating flame and stone arms no wider than saplings writhe on nearly every surface.

Bea's own sword's runnels sprout tiny heads and arms that mewl in infantile pain where the demon's burning ichor evaporates away in her anima's power. They reach blindly for her.

The arms nearest Merlin grasp each other and twist like clay in their better-rooted siblings' grasp into a tool that would fit the rivet-joins of his armor very well.



The tent itself SHAKES visibly, outside, as it belches vile shimmering hot air from every seam. Ned scrambles back from the tent flap on hands and feet, crab-walking in panicked grace only a child can manage so awkwardly.

Things resembling burning twigs made of stone shoot out on pinecone-green fiery rockets, ripping holes in the tent and shredding its door-flap. Desperately, Ned whips the stones Salf gave him at them, knocking them out of the air and batting at them with his shepherd's crook. But he's only a kid, and desperation only goes so far. While Ned is barely pinning down one that tried to grab him with the last of his smooth stones, several of the hideously crackling branches reach - like clawed, grasping hands - for the soldiers near Azalea.
Azalea
 player, 131 posts
Thu 18 Jul 2013
at 06:28
Re: Poisoning the Well

"Oh dear..."

Azalea stands up and runs towards the tent at the sight, mainly to drag Ned back towards a safer area. She interposes herself between the branches and Ned - and anyone behind her, urging them to get further back, to safety. And take those that can't walk, for that matter.

Not that she seems to know much about defending herself.


Then again, she is more worried about something more imminent. She looks towards the shaking, ripping tent.

"Bea? Are you guys alright in there?"
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 355 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Thu 18 Jul 2013
at 18:22
Re: Poisoning the Well
"Azalea!" Beatrix shouts, managing for now to push aside her concern over the fact that her attack did not nearly accomplish what she had hoped, and her concern over whether her sword can still be used; "All who cannot fight, move them away from the tent! Clear out!"
Merlin
 player, 337 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Thu 18 Jul 2013
at 21:51
Re: Poisoning the Well
In reply to Beatrix LeSchaye (msg # 90):

Merlin extends his wings and flaps them just to get into the air above the hands and arms on the ground. Maps and papers goes flying everywhere, but that is intentional for Merlin wishes the demon to be distracted by them. From off his bandleader fly two chakrum from each hand. Each set thrown in such a fashion as to make one or the other unable to be dodged by mortal means. Unfortunately the demon is not moral. Merlin enhances each attack with his own essence using Spirit Cutting Attack.

This message was last edited by the player at 21:52, Thu 18 July 2013.

Segev Stormlord
 GM, 568 posts
Mon 22 Jul 2013
at 01:48
Re: Poisoning the Well
Merlin's attacks manage to find gaps in the grasping arms and twisting fingers of the crackling, burning stone forest that has sprouted from the walls and floor of the tent. Unfortunately, the whirling motions also belied the position of the Blood of the Forge, and strikes so accurate that no mortal could have dodged them fly wide indeed from his willowy corporeal form.

"Aha!" exclaims the demon, suddenly delighted once again. "So this is your passion! Death and its dealing! I shall provide you an exquisite canvas on which to work your art!" The voice of this creature rose in pitch to a hyena's laugh at the end, exultant in a way that brings out one's desire to join in the revelry.

The arms growing from every internal surface sway as one, rippling like wheat in the wind and weaving a carpet of smoldering stone reeds from Beatrix to the door. With a sickening tearing and hideous cracking noise, the limbs in the walls rend and re-weave the tent entrance into a grand, self-supporting stage curtain. The arms nearest pull it up in a grand motion as at the start of the play, and through the opening skitters the Blood of the Forge on far, far too many limbs, almost dissolving within them like a cow being devoured by land-walking piranha mixed with the worse sort of spiders.

Azalea's efforts only barely pull Ned out of this all-too familiar monster's path, and the arm he was trying to smash scurries off towards one of the soldiers feverishly drawing his weapons. Unable to strike the stop-motion thing, he smashes his weapon into the ground only to have it crawl up the haft, up his arm, and force its way down his throat, where he begins to choke and cough up burning green bile.

This message was last edited by the GM at 01:52, Mon 22 July 2013.

Azalea
 player, 133 posts
Mon 22 Jul 2013
at 07:21
Re: Poisoning the Well
"No! Nonono, not again."

With a bubbling feeling of too familiar uselessness in a fight, Azalea pulls Ned further back and behind her and shouts at the rest of the soldiers "Do not fight it, get back, get to safety, and take those that can't with you!", even as she goes to the one that is grappled.


She has no way to fight, but removing obstructions, even mobile, poisonous ones, is not beyond her skills. She treats the offending tentabranch as such, taking a scalpel to cut it and proceed to extract it and treat the patient.

The soldier's life is a priority right now, even if it means opening new airpaths for him, or dissolving poison as it goes in his system.

Now, if only she manages to do all that before a second attack distracts her...


((Azalea can use Instant Treatment Methodology to apply an hour-long medical proceedure instantly, along with, as required, healing (to keep him alive) and poison removal. Of course, assuming she has spent more or less her personal motes in the scene before, she goes to at least the 8+ level immediately, possibly iconic if the other Charms are needed too.))