Part 73c - The long road.   Posted by Dworkin.Group: 0
Cyan
 player, 5403 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Tue 15 Oct 2013
at 16:43
Re: Part 73 - The long road
"Munnopur," Cyan whispers from within Left, as Berd feeds her sight of the moons.  "Only not."

And on they continue, finally ceasing their headlong plunge from world to world with the gates of a city distant.  Left drops, widening, then rises, leaving Cyan standing on the grass.  She rocks back and forth for an instant, gazing about herself.  "Thank you, Left," the General murmurs.  "Always a pleasure."

Berd remains where he sits, upon James' shoulder, seemingly resting.

Then she blinks, her eyes shading from smoky quartz to ruby, and glances to where James sits atop the gigantic lion.  "Must go around?  Does this city block our path, such that we cannot shift to another world?" Cyan inquires, genuinely curious.  Whe waves to the Archons, indicating they should move closer.  "I would speak with you all, and know your thoughts upon this journey thus far.  Call it...curiousity."
Malkia
 Player, 2 posts
Sat 19 Oct 2013
at 14:54
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Something - hunger?  fatigue?  frustration? - twists Malkia's features into a grimace of anger, and her tail thrashes.  Then she sighs, and seems to relax.

"Like Jim, I must move to go from place to place.  Unlike Jim, I can not choose my own path.  I follow a trail, like all hunters.  I set a goal, and the trail appears before me.  I can not deviate from it.  This place... " she glances towards the sprawl of brightly lit glass, metal and concrete structures which stretches along both sides of the river in the valley below, "... sits on the trail.  I could follow it, but that would mean going down there, and I do not like the stench.  Or I can turn aside, and find another trail to Amber."

And a deep rumbling growl, "And the noises!  The noises are worse than the stink!"

The Archons move closer to Cyan, though none of them speak (except, perhaps, to each other, in a manner which means nothing to human ears.  Harbonah finally answers her question, + THE JOURNEY... PROCEEDS.  WE HAVE ENCOUNTERED NO DIFFICULTY. +
Cyan
 player, 5405 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Mon 21 Oct 2013
at 17:59
Re: Part 73 - The long road
"Interesting," Cyan admits, considering Malkia's admission. She understands both Malkia's explanation and method of moving between worlds far better than she comprehends that of James or Berd.  It's simpler.  Berd once attempted to show her how he managed it, and she spent the next day curled up in ball, gibbering, while he paced around her making sympathetic noises and keeping her safe.

She can't even recall what it entailed, only that it involved such abstract complexities that her mind shut down.

"I admit that cities can be daunting at times," she agrees.  "I prefer smaller towns, rather than the occasional technological sprawl I have encountered."  Musing over Malkia's feelings, she turns to confront Harbonah.  Sadly, Cyan finds his words lacking.

"Naught more?  I shall need to gather firewood as we speak, but I doubt it shall cause issue with discussion."  Moving a few steps away, Cyan begins casting about for something she might use for fuel.  "I had hoped you might have obserations regarding these places you have seen.  Curiousities.  Questions.  Notations."  A shrug follows as she picks up a wrist-thick stick, settling it into the cradle of her other arm.  "If not, I understand.  I am constantly interested in the places through which I pass, but not everyone feels similarly.  Berd, for example."

The drake snoozes, apparently asleep.
James
 player, 974 posts
 This thing's to do
 Hamlet (IV, iv)
Tue 22 Oct 2013
at 01:41
Re: Part 73 - The long road
"Thank you, Malkia." James' experience with horses almost makes him accompany his words with a pat on the lioness' shoulder but some sub-conscious instinct for self-preservation prevents him making what would undoubtedly be an unwisely patronising gesture.

"We will go round if that's what you'd prefer.  We can pick up Dworkin's trail on the other side."  It was Dworkin they needed to find, after all, there was no guarantee that another trail to Amber would suit their purpose.

"Berd is quite the jaded traveller.  I swear he slept through half of our ride." James reaches up and gently lifts the drake off his shoulder, disengaging Berd's claws from the articulations in his armour were Berd has found purchase.  He places Berd on a pack and starts to clear ground for the fire.

"Malkia, would it affect your trail if I used the Pattern to find us some supplies?  We're kind of travelling light."
Dworkin
 GM, 3895 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Tue 22 Oct 2013
at 10:37
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Malki shakes herself, and stretches.  "No.  I do not think it would affect anything, Jim.  Though, if you need food, I can share my prey.  I would, of course, eat first."

Again Harbonah chooses to speak for the others, + WE HAVE DISCUSSED THIS AMONG OURSELVES AS WE TRAVELLED.  THE WORLDS WE HAVE SEEN ARE INTERESTING, BUT NOT UNLIKE COUNTLESS OTHERS.  ONE OR MORE OF THEM MAY HAVE BEEN VISITED BY ARCHONS - THE ONE WHERE THE LAND BURNED, FOR EXAMPLE, WAS REMINISCENT OF THE PLACE THAT THE RESIDENTS NAME ¶ºßÞ3375, A PLACE WHERE SERAPHIM AND NEPHILIM FOUGHT A PROLONGED BATTLE.  WE BELIEVE THAT YOU HAVE BEEN THERE, WHEN YOU WERE OUR GENERAL. +

And that last comment brings a snarl from Left, the scraping of blade upon blade upon blade. + DO NOT SPEAK OF THIS! +

+ YOU FORGET YOU PLACE, UNDERLING. +

The two start to circle each other...
Berd
 player, 943 posts
 Remove the candle,
 the flame remains.
Tue 22 Oct 2013
at 12:22
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Berd belches when James plucks him free, hanging like a ragdoll cat in the man's grasp and eyeing him blearily as a small haze of rainbow sparkles seeps from his jawline.  But a line of brightness passes across his eyes for an instant, indicating that at least one mind of the hydra remains aware.  The little dragon scrabbles about atop James' pack before plopping himself down with a faint groan.

Riding is hard work.

"Berd is...a tad concerned with other things than the worlds.  Food, sleep," Cyan begin to list, ticking off her fingers, then cuts off as the situation between the Archons sudden sparks close to violence.  "Hold!"  Her mind calculating angular and linear velocities, her body following its decisions, she shifts through the orbit of the two Archons, taking her place in its center.  "We have sufficient before us to deal with - fighting among ourselves only weakens us before confronting Dworkin."

"Harbonah," she continues.  "You state it factually, but a comment of that nature irritates my friends, for they care for my well-being.  Please avoid such clarifications in the future."  Her gaze flicks to the rapidly spinning Left.  "Please, Left.  Harbonah meant no harm - it was merely an observation.  Can we set this aside?"

OOC - Hopefully Cyan's rather high Warfare will allow her to slip between the two Archons.  :)
Dworkin
 GM, 3899 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Sat 26 Oct 2013
at 20:38
Re: Part 73 - The long road
For a moment there is tension in the air as the wheels hang before each other, steel and fire, and only flesh and blood between them.  And then the unthinkable happens...

+ WE APOLOGISE FOR OUR THOUGHTLESS CHOICE OF WORDS. +

Harbonah dimishes in size, and backs away from Cyan and Left, and there is a stirring among the other Archons, a subtle shifting, though no words pass between them.

+ THE WORLDS WE HAVE SEEN, MANY OF THEM, HAVE BORNE RESEMBLANCES TO OTHERS THAT WE HAVE SEEN IN THE PAST.  IT IS WORTH NOTING THAT WE HAVE SEEN THAT THE MAJORITY OF WORLDS ARE SUITABLE FOR HUMANS, ALTHOUGH THEY ARE NOT NECESSARILY COMFORTABLE FOR THEM. +

+ SOME TIME AGO WE CONCLUDED THAT THEY WERE SHAPED BY SOME FORCE WHICH WAS CONTROLLED BY HUMANS, OR BY THOSE WHO SHARED THEIR NEEDS, IN MUCH THE SAME WAY AS WE HAVE TRIED TO SHAPE WORLDS TO SUIT OUR OWN NEEDS. +


A prolonged pause, broken only by the constant life sounds of Archons.

+ IT LED US TO WONDER IF ANYBODY LIVED ON THESE WORLDS BEFORE THEY WERE SHAPED AS THEY ARE CURRENTLY, AND WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM?  WE MUST CONFESS, THOUGH, THAT OUR INTEREST LAY MAINLY IN LOCATING POTENTIAL ALLIES. +
Cyan
 player, 5406 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Mon 28 Oct 2013
at 16:43
Re: Part 73 - The long road
With a bard's natural aplomb - insomuch as she has demonstrated little of it, from time to time - Cyan keeps her features placid despite her astonishment at Harbonah's apology.  It's a measure of the Archon's own strength of character that he is capable of such things, and she hopes the other Archons see it as such.  There's some cause for concern, as one of them might feel it to be weakness and challange him...which won't go well for them, Cyan suspects.

So she bows, low, as befitting one receiving a gracious apology.  "Accepted, Lord Harbonah."  Her choice of words is deliberate; by giving ground on this one issue, Harbonah has surrendered none of his power or position in her eyes.

Straightening, she listens to Harbonah's observations with a keen ear.  They strike home, and Cyan finds herself caught up in the suppositions.  "A strange thing," she says when Harbonah finishes.  "I find myself questioning my own, simple conclusions now.  I had always thought that our method - mine and Berd's - of Walking The Worlds simply avoided those inhospitable to my kind.  Not being the 'guide', so to speak, I had no means of knowing otherwise.  But you have seen the Myriad Worlds from outside, as it were, and as a whole. You visit each by choice.  And so many of them are habitable for versions of my species?"

Her eyebrows rise.  "This opens many new questions.  New avenues for study, for conjecture, for the seeking out of proof.  What did come before?  How did the Myriad Worlds unfold?  Were they made for my kind?  If so, by who?  And, as you ask, what happened to them?"

Topaz eyes wide, Cyan stalks in a circle.  "These are questions that shall plague me, I think.  Here and now, we have a purpose.  But if this purpose ever finds a terminus, if we can settle our current problem to everyone's satisfaction...I think it would be a grand thing to travel the worlds, seeking evidence and signs of those who came before."

She stares pointedly at the Archons.  "We have already done so in search of information regarding your kind, and found your footprints - so to speak - upon many, many worlds.  Perhaps, buried deeply, we could discover those of the ones preceeding everyone."

A mystery to solve...perhaps the greatest one of all.
James
 player, 975 posts
 This thing's to do
 Hamlet (IV, iv)
Tue 29 Oct 2013
at 03:17
Re: Part 73 - The long road
"Of course." James answers shortly to Malkia's comment.  That Malkia would take first portion of her own kill was really so obvious that it didn't need saying, but perhaps Malkia thought a discreet warning was warranted.

"Anyway, thanks for the offer but if I'm going to eat prey, it'll be something I catch myself."

Satisfied with his preparations for camp, James stands and asks the others "I'm going to go for a short walk, see if I can't find us some supplies.  Any requests?"

James calls to mind an image of the Pattern and begins wondering how likely it might be for an unoccupied woodsman's hut to be located over the next rise.
Dworkin
 GM, 3903 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Tue 29 Oct 2013
at 14:02
Re: Part 73 - The long road
"As you wish, Jim." and Malkia is gone, moving away from the city of light and glass at a trot, back along the way which had brought them here.

James too sets off to search for food, but taking a different path, one which leads him parallel to the valley, but below the crest, so that the main sign that the city is the light illuminating the clouds in the sky above it.  That, and the occasional traffic sounds, carried faintly by the gusting wind.

High overhead the stars are only dimly visible in the gathering dusk.  Far brighter are the winking red and green lights of an aircraft, heading out from the city, in the same general direction as James. 

Cyan, Berd, and a number of Banglen-Yps are left to keep the Archons company.  The original Banglen-Yp, that is the one that Cyan has known the longest, seems inspired by their current situation and is soon involved in telling a complicated story regarding something she saw once on the screen - a tale of young adults camping in the woods and encountering a man in a mask who, for no reason that the blonde woman feels is necessary to explain, proceeds to kill them using a series of grisly techniques.

The kitten, Nine Lives is curled in her lap, asleep.

The Archons, meanwhile, perhaps intrigued by Cyan's suggestion, seem more interested in each other, hanging in a group a little way off and communing silently.

Banglen-Yp suddenly breaks from her tale, just as a pair of young lovers were about to go into a tent together, and glances at the wheels, •• They are talking about what you said • about finding who was here first •• The idea fascinates some of them and bores others ••
James
 player, 976 posts
 This thing's to do
 Hamlet (IV, iv)
Mon 4 Nov 2013
at 06:01
Re: Part 73 - The long road
James wanders off.  He soon picks up a game trail that leads him over the crest of the hill and out of sight of the camp.  As the light fades, he can see a faint glow coming through the trees, so he heads in that direction.  The Pattern, as always, provides.

Coming to the edge of a clearing, James stops to take stock of his surroundings.  He is looking across a bitumen carpark at a large building with an illuminated sign that reads "Overlook Hotel".  James feels a momentary sense of disorientation.  With all the variations in the myriad worlds, James is surprised to find that similarities as well as differences still have the ability to shock him.

There is only a single car in the carpark but the light above the front door is on, so there's probably somebody about.

James decides that his armour  will be a little too conspicuous, so he takes it off and finds a place to bury it amongst some fallen branches.  As James is rooting about he comes across a wallet.  Curious, and needing some local currency, James opens the wallet and finds the stub of an airline ticket, some cash and a driver's licence in the name of Richard Halloran.  The photo doesn't look anything like James, so the ID won't be of any use, but James pockets the cash after offering a short wish that the absent Mr Halloran won't miss it.

James considers for a long while before deciding to hang onto Gurthang.  The sword is too dangerous to be left lying around, it's likely to attract trouble.  James figures that is he can find something to disguise the hilt, he'll probably be okay.

Finally, James steps back to check his hiding spot and takes another look around the parking lot before breaking the cover of the trees and walking towards the front door.  James feels a bit self-conscious, riding for a couple of days in the same outfit doesn't leave you looking fresh, but he hopes the cash will be enough to make up for that.

OOC: In case you're wondering, it was that or Bates Motel, and the second answer is because sometimes I'm a glutton for punishment
Cyan
 player, 5407 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Mon 4 Nov 2013
at 12:37
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Cyan glances with amusement at the kitten in Banglen-Yp's lap, knowing full-well it's far, far more than it seems.  Reaching up, she touches Berd on the head, and the drake grumbles in his sleep.  But the 'woman's' observation wipes the smile from her face, and she moves over to crouch next to the being they name Banglen-Yp.

"I am...surprised?  No, pleased.  I shouldn't be surprised."  She shoots a look at the group of Archons.  "With interests beyond survival, beyond conquering, there would come divergeance.  Certainly some would find this interesting, and I expect I might be surprised to discover which.  Or not.  The main thing is that with choices opening beyond the grip of power - thanks to a strong yet fair leader and the potential for each to carve out their own 'place' in this new possibility we offer - they find themselves curious to explore other options."

The smile returns, softer now.  "I am no proper judge for such things - nor do I have the right to judge - but it seems to be a more...comfortable life for them.  Less harsh.  After eons trapped within a prison, they deserve such a life."

It is easy to forget that the Archons themselves have been horribly abused.

She laughs quietly.  "Berd has met an archon who grew interested in art.  I wonder, then, what might the others discover worthy of exploring."  She slants a look at Banglen-Yp.  "A fine talent you have; I wish I could understand their language.  Thank you for illuminating me regarding their discussion."
Dworkin
 GM, 3905 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Tue 5 Nov 2013
at 18:35
Re: Part 73 - The long road
James walks into the Overlook Hotel.  The lobby is mostly deserted, except for a sizeable collection of hunting trophies which regard him with glassy-eyed looks of disapproval from the walls.

The only other person in the room is a sandy haired young man, perhaps in his late teens or early twenties, behind the counter.  He wears a pair of thick-rimmed spectacles over not-quite flesh coloured eye-patch which covers his left eye and holds a padded dressing in place.  His red jacket was clearly intended for somebody larger.  He watches as James comes in, a thin book laying open and momentarily forgotten on the counter, the pages covered with colourful images and very little text.

He clears his throat, "Good evening, Sir, welcome to the Overlook.  How may I help you this evening."  It sounds stilted and awkward, as if he's rehearsed it too many times in front of a mirror. 

•• Their language comes from their shape • some of me have the shape and can hear their words •• This me hears what they hear •• Banglen-Yp says softly, watching as Nine Lives wakes, stretches, yawns, and is asleep again before his mouth is closed.  •• They have changed •• There was a time when they only thought of killing •• Of their own kind and others ••

She smiles, •• It now seems that this plan might work ••

•• Something we never thought possible ••
Cyan
 player, 5408 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Mon 11 Nov 2013
at 12:02
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Cyan slowly nods along with Banglen-Yp's words, and as she does her eyes shift through many colours.  A pressure builds within her chest, and she struggles to form an answer around it.  "I had hoped...I hoped this journey might help.  That they would see things from a different perspective.  That the Myriad Worlds might...show them some of their wildness, their vast wonder."  Her smile twists.  "I thought I would need to die to show them.  I was ready.  So many dead already, so many on all sides."

Her gaze slips to the Archons, all discussing 'quietly' in a group, and something inside her cracks.

Abruptly Cyan finds herself weeping - not the enormous, wracking sobs she has suffered in the past, but silent tears pouring down her cheeks.  "I knew there was hope," she whispers.  "But now I finally see it."  Her head goes down on her knees and her shoulders shake.

Agitated, Berd climbs upon her shoulders and fusses with her hair, crooning quietly.  Reaching up, she blindly pats him, clumsy in the release of emotion.
Dworkin
 GM, 3909 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Sun 17 Nov 2013
at 22:41
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Banglen-Yp cocks her head to one side and watches Cyan curiously.  She has seen tears before, on the screen, but they are not the same in the real world.  Less picturesque, for one thing, and seemingly less controlled.

And they leave the alien woman unsure what to do.

Consideration of the options soon rules out the likelihood of help from the Archons - if she, herself, almost human in her current form, doesn't know what to do, then it's seems impossible that the Archons, almost as alien as she and lacking a human form, would fare any better.

There is one here who is closer to Cyan in nature than any other.  Banglen-Yp's arms stretch out, extending and thinning, and deposit Nine Lives in Cyan's lap.  Young animals, the blonde woman recalls from the screen, can provide comfort.

This message was last edited by the GM at 18:12, Tue 19 Nov 2013.

James
 player, 977 posts
 This thing's to do
 Hamlet (IV, iv)
Tue 19 Nov 2013
at 02:37
Re: Part 73 - The long road
James approaches the counter and leans on it casually as he addresses the receptionist.  "Yeah.  Hi.  I was wondering if you do any take away food or have laundry facilities?  I've been hiking with some friends and we saw the light from the hotel here while we were setting up camp.  I thought I'd pop over and see if we couldn't supplement trail rations with something a bit tastier."

The young man seems a bit of an odd sort.  The jacket's probably just a wrong-sized uniform, but the eye injury makes James curious, though he's too polite to ask directly.  James settles for taking a glance at the book that's open on the counter.  Any local context would help make the conversation a little less awkward.
Dworkin
 GM, 3913 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Tue 19 Nov 2013
at 18:48
Re: Part 73 - The long road
The young man, a badge on his lapel reads "Teddy", carefully places a slip of paper on his book, then closes it, revealing a cover that's just as brightly coloured as the interior.

"Well, Sir, you're in luck.  Another half hour and the kitchen would have been closed.  There's probably a limited selection at the moment.  We don't generally have many guests until the holiday weekend.  But I can call though and see what Charlie's got in."

He does just that, picking up a glossy black object from the desk and speaking into it.  After a brief and, from James' perspective, one sided conversation he puts his hand over the part he'd been speaking into.  "We can do you some sandwiches, or burgers.  Not much to choose from just now."

He nods towards a brightly lit glass fronted cabinet near one wall, with a large vaguely deer-like animal head above it, "Got plenty of different drinks in the chill cabinet though."

Back at the camp, Banglen-Yp looks away from Cyan, staring up at the sky.  A mournful howl drifts through the evening air.  Whatever produced it doesn't seem too far away.
Cyan
 player, 5413 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Tue 19 Nov 2013
at 19:29
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Cyan accepts Nine Lives from Banglen-Yp's curious grasp, drawing the tiny(?) kitten in and cradling it.  A smile cracks her visage, even through the tears.  "Ah, thank you, Banglen-Yp.  You have been...a spot of light within all of this darkness. We could not have come near as far as we have without you."

She can't help but laugh, now.  It comes out a touch strangled, but true nonetheless.  "So many things have come together to bring us this far.  Luck?  Perhaps.  Or perhaps it has been people - of all forms and sizes, and on both sides of this conflict - working to raise themselves past expectations, to just do that little bit more to support each other in finding a way through this threat."  She holds up the kitten, staring into its wide eyes.  "Like this gift you have given me, Banglen-Yp.  You, who do not fully understand my kind, still trying to find a way to help."

She shudders once, a release of tension through her entire body, and goes back to hugging the small feline close.  Not too close, of course - no squeezing going on here.  On her shoulder, Berd doesn't protest the usurption of his ages-old position.  If it helps, it helps, and sometimes a daughter doesn't need her father trying to be a cute animal.

Cyan shoots a smile at Banglen-Yp.  "Hope is a curious thing.  Only when we have it can we truly feel the risk of loss, and its accompanying pain.  Yet far better that than the grey void of despair."
Dworkin
 GM, 3915 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Sun 24 Nov 2013
at 22:36
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Banglen-Yp looks puzzled, •• If I can help • then why would I not help ••  A nod towards the kitten, •• Even he helps in his own way •• Who is to say that his help is not as important as mine or yours •• In the right place • and at the right time • his help might be exactly what is needed ••

•• It may be that something important will need to be napped upon ••

There is a stirring among the Archons.

•• They have decided that • if there is time before they move on to my home • some of them will search for signs of the first ones •• Harbonah finds the idea interesting ••

•• Perhaps that is all he ever needed • something to occupy his mind ••
James
 player, 978 posts
 This thing's to do
 Hamlet (IV, iv)
Thu 28 Nov 2013
at 13:45
Re: Part 73 - The long road
"Sounds good to me." James was a little surprised to find this was entirely true.  Hours of riding had left him feeling as hungry as a peckish Berd (not a properly hungry Berd, though, that would be something else again).

"Burgers'd be good, but I'd probably just have a mess on my hands before I got back to camp."

James digs into his pocket and pulls out the cash he'd 'found' earlier.  He puts the money on the counter and hopes his exchange rates aren't too far out.  "D'you reckon this might do for a round of sandwiches and a bottle of something from the cabinet?"
Cyan
 player, 5415 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Thu 28 Nov 2013
at 15:06
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Cyan offers Banglen-Yp a small smile.  "So many do not, Banglen-Yp.  Help, kindness...these things are rarely given freely.  To help, to aid, one must give of oneself; as such, many people instinctively shy from it.  Other are consciously greedy.  Not all, and some people do surprise...but it is less the norm than it should be."  She wipes the remains of the tears from her face.  "It is a fine thing that you are of the sort who does grant them without hesitation.  You will be a welcome guardian for the Archons and their new universe.  I have met...quite a few special people upon this journey; I count myself blessed."

Her fingers scratch the kitten's ears.  "We might all learn something from cats, I suspect."

She studies the Archons for a long moment.  "Perhaps you are correct about Harbonah.  Perhaps that is what ALL Archons require, much like any living thing.  They spent so long trapped in a hellish place, they may have lost everything but their base instincts - survived, rule.  Control becomes a necessity when there is none in one's life."  The bard laughs, a quiet, rueful sound.  "Harbonah also strikes me as the sort who despises chaos, who wishes for order.  Everything in its tidy place.  It's possible the random push and pull of his people's desperation offended him greatly."
Dworkin
 GM, 3918 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Sun 1 Dec 2013
at 15:24
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Teddy relays James' order to the kitchen, with a few questions to clarify one or two details, then scribbles a series of figures down on a notepad, before splitting out some of the cash.  "This is plenty, Sir.  We aren't close enough to charge big city prices." he says with a grin.  A drawer behind the desk is opened, and the separated cash disappears, to be replaced some brass coins.

"And here's your change.  Help yourself to... "
he pauses, as bright light sweeps in shines in through the windows, sweeping across the walls.  "Help yourself to drinks, they're all one price."  He seems distracted, trying to see out of the windows into the night beyond, "Busy night, for the time of year."

At the camp the Archons drift away from each other.  Some seem to be patrolling, while others appear to be drifting aimlessly, moving from place to place, pausing near a tree here, or a rock there.  One of them, one of the stained glass ones that is really a Banglen-Yp is following a moth.  Suddenly the brightly coloured wheel engulfs the insect, then darts away and releases it on the other side of the clearing.

And starts following it again.

The Banglen-Yp talking to Cyan frowns, •• Why would they not help •• By helping others you help yourself •• You gain friends who will help you in future •• And you feel good for helping ••
Cyan
 player, 5417 posts
 Forged of dust,
 sunlight, and tears
Wed 4 Dec 2013
at 13:37
Re: Part 73 - The long road
Cyan grins at the sight of the Banglen-Yp playing with a moth.  She isn't hurting it, really.  Her smile fades slightly at Banglen-Yp's question, growing a touch more wistful.  She ponders a moment, then smoothly rises to her feet, moving to hand Nine Lives back to the 'woman'.  "It is a question both easy and difficult to answer, Banglen-Yp.  The reasons are simple.  It is comprehending them when you do not feel such yourself, that is hard."

Taking two steps away, the Bard draws Fangmir, the unfamiliar sword heavy in her hand.  "I should practice," she murmurs as Berd makes a panicked lunge off her shoulder to the nearest tree-limb.

"Through their lives, people feel rejection.  They reach out as children, and are turned down.  Not at every turn, mind, but it is impossible for people to provide for every child's every want and desires.  This would be poor parenting, as well - it does not teach a child to be self-sufficient.  Rather, it teaches greed and selfishness."

She tests the blade's balance.  Perfect, of course, but weighted differently than both Kirilind๋ and Gurthang.  The bard attempts a few exploratory sweeps in the air.  The weapon may have been made for James' strength, but when he was younger.  Less seasoned.  While even that James would be stronger than her, Cyan is no weakling, capable of effortlessly hefting a strong man into the air one-handed and throwing him several paces.

She can manage this blade.

"But rejection hurts.  And children come to realize that there will always be rejection, in some way, and it always hurts.  Some learn to grow past this, to realize that rejection of a request is not a rejection of them.  Others do not.  They learn that to request leads to pain.  To open oneself to another leads to pain.  It is a lesson they find hard to break."

She begins a simple form.  Forms are nothing more than that, of course; they teach form.  Balance, footwork, blade control - all useful, but no substitute for real practice against a resisting opponent.  But for learning the ways of this sword, a form will suffice for now.

"At the same time, they encounter the fact that sometimes when they give, the other person does not give back.  This is life.  Perhaps the other person has no time.  Perhaps the other person, through a conflict of personalities, does not wish to give back or be a friend.  Perhaps it is situational.  Perhaps - and this is sadly all-too-common - the other person is of a sort who has grown selfish themselves, for whatever reason, be that pain in their heart, or a general malign bent.  But the lesson is still learned, whatever the root."

The sword becomes a wheel of silver in the air, echoing the shape of the archons for an instant.

"Sometimes when one gives, one loses."

She pauses, turning a sad smile to Banglen-Yp.  "And so these children grow into adults.  And as adults, if they cannot rise above these painful lessons of childhood, they may grow cold.  Closed in.  Greedy.  They have learned that if they wish to feel good, they must take that from others, not help others.  To help is to give.  Far easier to take.  One can take items.  One can also take worth - by putting down another, one makes oneself feel better...for a time.  It also brings guilt, somewhere inside, so one quickly must do so again, to keep the superior feeling, a vicious cycle difficult to break."

Moving through her form, she shakes her head.  "Ah, but there are many ways this manifests, too many for me to list.  And certainly people are not all this way - people are a mix, in general.  Some mostly giving, but at times selfish of their needs.  Others in the other direction.  Very few stand at each pole.  Certainly I have been guilty myself!" she notes with a small laugh.

"But in the end, it comes to this: it is easier, in the short run, to gain something - worth, items, respect - by taking it from others, than it is to put the effort into helping them.  Easier, but less lasting.  And damaging to oneself, for it is wrong, and the spirit knows this no matter the decisions of the mind.  Effort is needed in life.  All good things come with effort.  Some people realize this, and are perfectly willing to put in the effort, to make their lives and the worlds about them better places through hard work.  To create something lasting, for themselves and others."

The form ends.  Cyan slowly lowers Fangmir, her eyes glittering amethyst.  "But to those who learned the two painful lessons wrongly in their childhood, who have never grown above them, the effort is too costly.  Far better to seek the shortcuts, the easy solutions that never last, that only cause more pain within oneself and the world."

Her lips press together and she gives another sad shake of her head.  "It is a sorrowful thing."
Dworkin
 GM, 3920 posts
 Renegade Lord of Chaos,
 creator of the Pattern...
Thu 5 Dec 2013
at 18:31
Re: Part 73 - The long road
The door opens, and a figure is silhouted against the lights on the porch.  A woman by the slim build and the height, a long dark coat pulled tight around her, and a hood drawn down low over her face as she advances into the hotel.

Gloved hands are raised to throw back the hood and reveal short red hair and blue eyes, and a sneer of contempt as she sees the hunting trophies.  The man who follows her in is burdened with enough baggage for three people, as well as a longbow, and a quiver of arrows.  His clothes are considerably more casual and rustic than the woman's.

He drops the bags near the door, causing the woman to sigh theatrically and roll her eyes, but retains the bow and arrows, and advances towards the desk, with a nod in James' direction.  His eyes flick back to Teddy, peering at his name tag, "Hello... er... Teddy.  We need a room for at least two nights, maybe longer.  Best room in the house, if possible."

As Teddy starts on the process of checking the guests in, James is left to wait for his food, as the woman watches him curiously...

Cyan tests the blade, moving it through forms and patterns which grow ever more complex as she grows accustomed to the feel of the weapon.  The weight pulls against her muscles in odd ways, drawing her arm out further to the side than normal, or pulling her forward so that her foot comes down six inches ahead of where she would normally place it after a step.

Banglen-Yp watches, holding Nine Lives where he can observe without getting in the way.  Like most cats, he finds rapid movement fascinating, right up until he doesn't... for the moment though, he does.  Eyes locked on the fast moving shiny thing.

And then another movement draws his attention.  An Archon moves close, but stops just out of reach of the blade.  + GENERAL.  WE HAVE FOUND SOMETHING WE BELIEVE YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT. +
James
 player, 979 posts
 This thing's to do
 Hamlet (IV, iv)
Sun 8 Dec 2013
at 07:19
Re: Part 73 - The long road
James' attention is caught by the sweep of the headlights and he watches with interest as the woman and man enter.  As the man approaches the counter, James steps back to make room for him.

The woman's cloak and hood, not to mention the bow and arrows, strike James as anachronous but then James is discreetly screening a scabbarded sword with his legs, so it would be rather hypocritical to judge them on account of their equipment.  Mostly, James hopes their conversation with Teddy will give him some more clues about his current surroundings.

James crosses to the drinks cabinet and starts  to inspect its contents.  He is listening intently and tries to angle any convenient reflections to keep an eye on the woman.