Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?   Posted by Segev Stormlord.Group: 0
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 744 posts
Wed 26 Aug 2015
at 02:45
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
The remainder of the trip provides ample opportunity for Peddles to demonstrate the efficacy of her protection. The ever-thickening beastman patrols are better equipped and generally filled with more impressive physical specimens - some as much grotesque as grand - that more resemble a combination of goat and wolf than any other beasts, but they travel amiably for a time before breaking off.

It does not take long before one of the groups of beastmen are escorting another, less grand set of them, which seem to have human prisoners...
Peddles
 player, 11 posts
Wed 26 Aug 2015
at 17:23
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Peddles crouches down, so that hopefully her giant backpack utterly conceals her from a distance (it actually does a fair job up close) and/or resembles an immobile boulder.

Slowly and carefully to avoid the noisy jangling that normally accompanies her gait, she duck-walks next to Bea and whispers.  "Trade and negotiation?  Or violence?  Or are we focused elsewhere right now?"
Beatrix LeSchaye
 player, 421 posts
 Solar
 Zenith
Thu 27 Aug 2015
at 17:55
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Beatrix actually startles a bit, evidently having been lost in thought. She accepts the dolls with a murmur of 'friends', and then, more clearly, says "My apologies, Peddles. I was considering... possibilities. We go to seek negotiation. Trade is doubtful but possible; the only coin I know the wolf to care for is one I refuse to deal in. Similarly, I do not believe he will take kindly to negotiation. But this is by reputation only; I have never dealt with him face to face."
Merlin
 player, 446 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Sat 29 Aug 2015
at 15:49
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Merlin is nowhere to be found. He was just here a few moments ago? Of course, for his normal traveling companions, this is nothing new.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 745 posts
Wed 2 Sep 2015
at 00:24
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
"You'll have that honor soon; we are less than a half day's trek to the Nameless Lair," comments Silent Thunder Leaves.
Austringer
 player, 54 posts
Wed 2 Sep 2015
at 01:56
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
"'Honor?'" murmurs Austringer.

Aloud, he address the other Lunar.  "Silent Thunder Leaves, why do you follow him?  You say the Praying Matron scribed your tattoos, and you don't seem to be, well, a barbarian.  But here you stand, assigned this unworthy mission to deal with this issue of slaves while your fellow acolytes pursue work on the Blessed Isle and in Nexus itself!  Why are you serving someone who allows--" he gestures at the distant beastmen and their coffle of captives-- "that?  I've seen your power first hand.  This is beneath you.  What did Ma-Ha-Suchi do for you?"
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 746 posts
Fri 4 Sep 2015
at 03:02
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
"This was an unusual mission," replies the Lunar with a diffident tone that contains acknowledgement of Austringer's point. "Ma-Ha-Suchi is direct. The Praying Matron is too focused on civilization and its debauchery; she tattooed me, but her life and ways are not for me. The wilderness is honest. Pure. Without pretense." She trails off abruptly, as if exhausting a very limited reservoir of words.
Merlin
 player, 447 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Fri 4 Sep 2015
at 12:22
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
From his vantage point Merlin starts looking for a specific prisoner among the children.

'This will complicate things...', he thinks.
Merlin
 player, 448 posts
 If you knew he
 would have to kill you
Sat 5 Sep 2015
at 03:41
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
It does not take long before he finds the boy that he is looking for and heads back to his companions. A whisper in the midst of them he says, "They have Ned and his goats. Looks like there will be more to negotiate for unless you want me to find a way to get him."
Peddles
 player, 12 posts
Mon 7 Sep 2015
at 20:05
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Peddles looks over at Merlin with concern.  This Ned is a friend?  Is he... as well as could be hoped?

Then she blinks, and a sly, foxlike grin spreads across her features.  "How fortuitous that a high ranking member of Ma Ha Suchi's court is here to assist us."

Facing Silent Thunder Leaves directly, she quietly and almost innocently asks. "You could simply order those slaves remanded to our care, could you not?  Were you so inclined?  Such is within your power?"
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 747 posts
Sun 13 Sep 2015
at 02:16
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
"Delivery of the slaves is the high-breeds' duty," replies the quietly-moving Lunar with a look of discomfort. "Why would we order them to hand their duty to us? Most of you do not even serve the Horned Wolf."

She glances over the exhausted individuals in the slave-driving troop, and frowns. "Though maybe it would not hurt to have Azalea look them over. They don't look entirely healthy."

This message was last edited by the GM at 17:18, Sun 13 Sept 2015.

Peddles
 player, 13 posts
Mon 14 Sep 2015
at 21:13
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Peddles bows as deeply and graciously as she can without overbalancing and being crushed under her pack.

"My gratitude to the powerful and gracious Silent Thunder Leaves."

She backs away respectfully.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 748 posts
Mon 21 Sep 2015
at 22:54
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Suiting action to words, Silent Thunder Leaves stalks over to the healer. "Azalea," she addresses the smaller woman brusquely, "Would you be willing to examine the health of the slaves being brought in? They look unwell to me."

She begins leading the way towards the most large-and-in-charge of the beastmen, without even looking to see if Azalea agreed or is following.
Azalea
 player, 186 posts
Wed 7 Oct 2015
at 02:17
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?

"Of course."


There's not even a hint of hesitation, as she falls in stride, looking through her satchel for supplies she may need.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 750 posts
Wed 7 Oct 2015
at 13:23
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Even as Silent Thunder Leaves accosts the largest beast man, Azalea's immediate impression is that the people - humans and smaller, more diversely fauna-influenced beastmen alike - are suffering from extreme exhaustion and some mild dehydration. A few may be malnourished, but at worst most look like they're merely suffering from a day or two of deprivation. Her expert opinion is that most are moving faster than their energy levels permit, despite the by-now trudging pace, and that the strongest-looking look the most weary; they may not have slept.

Fortunately, despite her relatively smaller size, the Lunar's descent upon the beastman quickly overwhelms his belligerence with her greater aggression (and a none-too-subtle slap across his nose accompanied by a flare of strength-enhancing Essence that illuminates a silver circle on her brow). She places herself between Azalea and the beastman, leaving Azalea a less-obstructed path to her potential patients.

Merlin and the others may (with a success on any sort of perception or awareness check) notice that other large, goat- and wolf-themed Beastmen seem to be looming menacingly in Azalea's direction, but have not quite yet moved to interfere.
Azalea
 player, 188 posts
Sat 10 Oct 2015
at 22:53
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?


It's not entirely clear if Azalea is unpertrubed by the hostility, or missed it entirely due to concern for the injured, but it's quite likely she has been a frontline medic before.

At least her focus suggests something among these lines, as she goes from the worst case towards the best one, administering what relief and advice she can give all the while observing the current and the next patient.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 751 posts
Mon 12 Oct 2015
at 12:45
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
There are a few dozen. The worst are on litters, being dragged by those who are in not-so-bad condition. All of the worst are human, and most are adolescents. The worst are victims of long-term malnourishment. Not total starvation, and that deprivation is recent, but merely the difficulty that many peasant farmers have getting all of the essentials, especially in bad years (or when their crops are repeatedly trampled).

At least one beastman (who seems some sort of rabbit-snake thing with viper fangs for buck teeth and long, scaled ears) who was doing the travois-dragging was one of her early patients, just due to clearly needing some vital vitamins to avoid a rather permanent collapse. Something about the way Silent Thunder Leaves introduced and unleashed Azalea has him eyeing her nervously as he nods to her advice and takes whatever she gives him. He seems very uncomfortable letting a more hale beastman take his travois, flinching at that one's glare.

Azalea's focus and efficiency is such that it might take her a moment to realize that she recognizes one of the youngest patients. Even if she doesn't without his hat, the young goat-boy blinks blearily when she wakes him to administer treatment. "A-- Azalea?" he asks, working moisture into his mouth. "Did they capture you, too?"
Azalea
 player, 189 posts
Mon 12 Oct 2015
at 17:16
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?

Azalea was making mental notes about the mother of all vitamin-enriched soups she was planning to prepare later, when said specific patient dragged her out of her line of thought.

"Wha-? What are you doing here? I thought we left you somewhere safe!"


Earlier assumptions about the nature of the boy had progressively given way to more rational thoughts in Azalea's mind; he was just a boy that liked goats, and getting mixed in this wasn't good.

In fact, she looks around for his goat.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 752 posts
Mon 12 Oct 2015
at 21:29
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Now that she's looking for them, spotting two goats being carried on the backs of two people - one beastman and one put-upon human - is fairly easy. The goats look like they're only not vociferously complaining because they've complained so much that they've run out of things to say. Or have worn out their voices, at least. Neither looks pleased to be carried.

Ned sits up a bit. "Y-you did. I just was going out to some farms to trade, while you were out, and I got caught up with these raiders." He gratefully takes more potable liquid to wet his mouth a bit, before looking up at Azalea sheepishly. "Sorry. ...how'd you get captured? Isn't Merlin watching out for you and Lady LeSchaye?"
Azalea
 player, 190 posts
Tue 13 Oct 2015
at 11:47
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?

"We're not cap-... well, it's kind of complicated. Farms, you say? How were they?"


The questions are a common diversion for patients - it lets them focus on something other than their discomfort.

While she does listen and does take care of Ned, however, she tries to catch Beatrix' attention and point to Ned and the goats - since she likely can't find Merlin, unaware that he had already informed of their presence.
Peddles
 player, 14 posts
Fri 23 Oct 2015
at 17:03
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Still crouching and ostensibly hidden, Peddles fidgets.

"If the place where these slaves are bound for is nearby, It might be good to escort them.  So that they arrive safely.", Peddles says, as if to the air itself.

Fishing in her pack, she pulls out a small doll that looks not entirely unlike a tiny goat.

"Perhaps a gift is in order, to ensure good feelings..." she muses.
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 755 posts
Sat 21 Nov 2015
at 12:15
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Ned looks puzzled, but answers, "I only got to one estate. It looked okay, I guess, but then the beastmen...and well..." he gestures to the captors and captives. As he wakes up, he seems a bit stronger, especially with Azalea's administration of restoratives.

The large beastman and Silent Thunder Leaves are exchanging terse grunts and monosyllabic words, but seem to be getting some sort of point across to each other. It's hard to tell if they're glaring or just if they don't do expressions other than "taciturn."
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 756 posts
Thu 3 Dec 2015
at 15:38
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Silent Thunder Leaves's ears twitch at Peddles's words, and she snarls something at the beastman, who calls a brief halt to allow Azalea and anybody helping her a few minutes to better perform her ministrations. The Lunar woman's oddly silent motions make it easy to think she's sneaking up on Peddles when she draws suddenly near. "What did you have in mind? A gift for Ma Ha Suchi's hospitality would be proper. We could exchange some with these tributaries to bring some captives of our own as a sign of respect."
Peddles
 player, 16 posts
Thu 10 Dec 2015
at 19:17
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
In reply to Segev Stormlord (msg # 71):

Moving from a crouch to a kneeling position, Peddles offers the tiny goat, now joined by a tiny wolf, to STL in the attitude of an humble supplicant.  But she speaks quickly.

"I was thinking some symbols of our respect as so, but may I confer privately with Lady Beatrix, my leader first?  I would ask permission and take care not to offend with details.  She is much more skilled in diplomacy and the ways of trade than I."
Segev Stormlord
 GM, 757 posts
Wed 16 Dec 2015
at 03:56
Re: Who's afraid of the big bad wolf?
Silent Thunder Leaves's expression isn't exactly turning up her nose at the offerings, but is definitely discomfitted and probably confused by them. "Of course. Talk to Beatrix," she says brusquely, clearly uncomfortable and uncertain with this interaction.