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23:42, 27th February 2024 (GMT+0)

The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport.

Posted by AutarchFor group 0
Autarch
GM, 2215 posts
Mon 13 Aug 2012
at 02:25
  • msg #846

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

DawnStone drifts away from the lawmen towards the southern part of town, looking to take the town's day-after measure. Outside of the The Smooth Sailing Inn and Tavern, a short and lithe man with wild hair and outlandish attire, checks the cast of his shadow. The tavern has a "We're closed--make your own darn coffee" sign on the front but from all the hustle and bustle within, it can't be long before it opens for breakfast.

A couple of kids exit from the Bountiful Tide General Store, hands full of cinnamon sticks and fishing poles. They gawk at the shardmind before remembering their manners, "Nice to meet you, mister, we're going fishing on the wharf. Plenty of fish and plenty of time, if you're interested."

They wait a polite half of a second before darting for the water, lest they lose another moment of the golden dawn of their childhood.
This message was last edited by the GM at 04:26, Mon 13 Aug 2012.
DawnStone
player, 352 posts
AC-23, F-23, R-23, W-23
HP-62/62, HS-9/9, PP-24
Mon 13 Aug 2012
at 03:26
  • msg #847

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

In reply to Autarch (msg # 846):

He would have blinked in shock. It was like nothing had happened. Could it be right? Could the gods have put everything back the way it was suppose to be? He did not know-only the land would speak truth to him. He followed the children to the wharf-where many walked to their deaths under the Voice's spell. Once there, he would perform the ritual and find out once and for all...
Gethin Ballider
player, 1145 posts
+15, d10+7; Ins26, Per19
AC26, F20, R19, W21
Mon 13 Aug 2012
at 16:21
  • msg #848

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Gethin clanks and jangles around the jailhouse, looking about slowly, dream-like, with a dream's disregard for those niceties of propriety such as not crossing the invisible line behind the jailor's desk.

"I see.  Can you tell me, sir, in what condition you found this jail when you began your shift?  When I last saw it, it was... quite messy."  Full of blood and bone and vomit, really, but Gethin doesn't want to be locked up as a madman.

He stands outside the cells, locking eyes with the prisoners inside.  Buckram, Clovis, and Easy Oasy.  Do they remember him?  "Jailor, I was witness to these men's crimes and wish to leave a statement."

Once that's done, Gethin makes his way to the General Store.  Didn't Levkojen say she was going there?

OOC: I get the impression DM is wrapping this up, so I don't need to go into any detail unless he wants to.
Levkojen
player, 119 posts
Bride of Dagon
Mon 13 Aug 2012
at 19:42
  • msg #849

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Levkojen has been strolling down the street, not being interested that much in prisons. She prefers looking at the town and its people by far. They all seem rather nice.

At the general store she stops and enters the shop. There are a few things she needs.

''Hello?''
Jin
player, 5 posts
Golden Harvest Acrobat
From the Far East
Mon 13 Aug 2012
at 22:21
  • msg #850

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Jin shifts his weight back and forth between his feet in impatience, gaze flitting from the sign to the sun to the sign, until finally the monotony is broken by the arrival of new faces. While the giant animated statue was the most interesting, it seemed intent on its own business, and Jin wasn't sure if that was just the way giant animated statues did things in the West. Instead he hurries to the store as the heavily armored elf and robed maiden arrive.

"Ahhhh, wait wait! Finally, some gaijin of quality! You look like the type who maybe also survived the storm and can tell me where is this wonderful faire of which I have heard so much? All I have found so far is no breakfast."
Autarch
GM, 2216 posts
Mon 13 Aug 2012
at 23:15
  • msg #851

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Marius' face clouds at Gethin's question, "Best not to dwell on that, sir. We're up to regulation now. And if I have the right sense of this town, those three will be our last prisoners for a pretty good spell."

He retrieves three files from his desk, one labeled in a punctilious script Clovis, the next Buckram, and the last Easy Oasy, and hands them to Gethin. Their counterparts sulk in their cells steadfastly refusing to recognize their former jailer.

Lev finds the general store with Gethin joining her some minutes later.

Lena, the grandmotherly shopkeep, greets the changeling, "Why, you poor dear. You're soaked through and through. Whatever have you been doing out in the rain?"

Even thought you were just here yesterday or the day before, it feels like a year has past . Lena still bustles about, sweeping up any dirt you leave in your tracks. The "Adventurer's Essentials" aisle is well-stocked.

Caught in a dream, the shardmind doesn't respond to Jin's query. Instead he trails the scamps to the dock where he finds them already sitting on the edge of a peer.

Bark! Bark! Bark! A spotted terrier bounds up to the boys, eager for their first catch. One of the boys, the one with the straw-colored hair, scratches the hound behind its ears. If they weren't friends for life before, they are now.

To be sure, the harbor's a mess, but who can worry about that when sea brims with fish?

In the distance, a storm-ravaged schooner limps towards port, two of its four masts splintered.
Levkojen
player, 121 posts
Bride of Dagon
Tue 14 Aug 2012
at 09:20
  • msg #852

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Autarch:
Lena, the grandmotherly shopkeep, greets the changeling, "Why, you poor dear. You're soaked through and through. Whatever have you been doing out in the rain?"

Levkojen smiles at the elderly woman. ''Why, cancelling my wedding mostly. Worked out nice enough, all considered. Though my dear fiance's voice died at the end, really, I'm sorry for him.''

She walks through the aisles, looking around and gathering stuff she will need for a voyage over land, asking Gethin for advice now and then. She also picks a small set of tools from the specialist's section. Having such like these would have come in handy the last couple of days.

OOC: Picking up an adventurer's kit and thieves' tools. Part of my free nonmagical starting equipment we pay out of non disclosed loose change?


As the foreigner enters the shop she listens delighted to his words. ''You have such an interesting pronunciation! Yes, the storm seems to have blown in quite a lot of strangers into the town. And so many of them so fortunately late! Though I worry the fair might be over or has been cancelled, I'm not sure which.''
DawnStone
player, 354 posts
AC-23, F-23, R-23, W-23
HP-62/62, HS-9/9, PP-24
Tue 14 Aug 2012
at 14:40
  • msg #853

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

In reply to Autarch (msg # 851):

At the waters Edge, the Crystal man sits. Places his inhuman feet into the water, and begins a low hum. While something had happened to his friends and him, and time had unnaturally passed-he wanted to know for sure. Only the land itself, the air around him, the water he touched-could tell him what he wanted to know.

(OOC-Commune with Nature ritual, using Spirit's speech for bonus. Total roll.

10:36, Today: DawnStone rolled 32 using 1d20+18.)

Gethin Ballider
player, 1146 posts
+15, d10+7; Ins26, Per19
AC26, F20, R19, W21
Tue 14 Aug 2012
at 15:06
  • msg #854

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Optimistic by nature, Gethin begins to brighten as he walks from the jail to the general store.  The town seems bustling with brightness, and he has hope that maybe their efforts here have effected positive change for Ashenport.  True, they never did discover how exactly the town fell under Dagon's sway, but Gethin refuses to believe that all their blood and sweat was simply part of some bleak existentialist drama, wherein they acted simply because what else was there to do but the whole thing will start again from the beginning next fair season.

"Well met again, Lena," he offers as he enters the shop.  "I have some valuable items to sell or trade.  Now that Ashenport seems to be doing better, perhaps you could find a buyer for them.  What would you give me for these?"

((Trying to sell the following:

500gp Black Pearl, Streetwise = 11
250gp Jade Pennant, Streetwise = 21
250gp Alabaster Sea Lion, Streetwise = 22))


"I also am interested in a certain magical item, a Healer's Brooch.  Do you stock such a thing, or would you know someone in town who did?"

((I want to do a more or less equal trade of Gethin's Amulet of False Life +2 for a Healer's Brooch +2.  Both are Level 9 Uncommon items.  Streetwise = 18.))
Jin
player, 7 posts
Golden Harvest Acrobat
From the Far East
Wed 15 Aug 2012
at 02:07
  • msg #855

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Levkojen:
''You have such an interesting pronunciation! Yes, the storm seems to have blown in quite a lot of strangers into the town. And so many of them so fortunately late! Though I worry the fair might be over or has been cancelled, I'm not sure which.''


"Interesting pronunciation is only one of many weapons I would deploy, but not if the fair is canceled! How can this be? All talk for miles was only this. Is this land so fickle with faires? Is there no respect for the world's second oldest profession? Is there some war that heavily armed bodyguards are needed for shopping?"

Jin spoke in an unbroken crescendo, gesturing largely as he did so, hands returning to the hilts of his blades as he spoke incredulously of the armaments of others.
Autarch
GM, 2217 posts
Thu 16 Aug 2012
at 03:45
  • msg #856

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

The sun beams over the harbor and the boys make their first catch of the day, a blue-striped mackerel, which lands promptly in the dogs jaws. The slippery thing wriggles free on to the dock and flops back into the harbor. Howling piteously, the hound leans over the edge, but the boys just hoot. Looks like they'll have to catch that fish all over again.

That's as much answer as the shaman (or Gethin) will be getting.

The schooner eases into the harbor.

In the store, Lena clutches Lev's hands when she shares the story of her dashed nuptials, putting aside the pile of gold coins she had retrieved from the till for the paladin's treasures.

"He was the magic of your life, wasn't he?"

Lena pushes the Amulet of False Life to the far corner of her sales counter, behind the candy stick jars.

"Dear me, what have you been up to?"

She shakes her head and ambles to the right aisle and stares at an empty area. She pushes aside the emptiness, which turns out to be full of black folds.

"No, can't say that I do have that."
Levkojen
player, 123 posts
Bride of Dagon
Thu 16 Aug 2012
at 09:03
  • msg #857

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Levkojen shivers slightly under the attentions of the old woman, suddenly feeling the cold. ''No. No, he really wasn't.''
The magic of her life. She can easily imagine being bound by that magic, returning year for year to Ashenport's ill fated fair, until... No. No good can come out of dwelling over such things, and for her the spell has been broken as she was rescued from the altar. She reaches for Gethin's arm (clinging to it, really).
''Let us leave here. Please.''

Remembering the strange man, she turns to him and says ''No fair, and I think if you don't belong here you'd do better to leave this town. As will we. Gethin? I want to wander the land. Or perhaps there's a ship in the harbor which will carry us. Whatever.''
Farren
player, 18 posts
Seeker - AC21 F16 R20 W20
HP54 HS8 HSV13 pp26 pi22
Thu 16 Aug 2012
at 21:13
  • msg #858

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

On the deck of the schooner, Farren is asleep, slumped over a winch by the forward bow. As it turns out it's possible to crew a vessel like this alone, but it's not possible to get any sleep while you do. The sails on the remaining two masts have been taken down, the ropes inexpertly tied off, the anchor... still in place. Ah. The schooner eases into the harbor, but there's nothing dragging the sea floor, slowing the boat to a stop. The ship runs aground and comes to a violent halt, but not so violent that anything is wrecked, Farren's dream excepted.

The exhausted elf dutifully obeys the first law of motion, and tumbles over the rail into the shallows. Remarkably, she stays asleep up until the moment she's actually submerged, which turns out to be a very distressing moment. (It's safe to assume there have been many of those for Farren recently.)

The schooner is a light craft, and so the water where Farren falls is shallow enough that her reactionary flailing keeps her head above water, and half the town hears her surprised shriek.
Jin
player, 8 posts
Golden Harvest Acrobat
From the Far East
Fri 17 Aug 2012
at 00:36
  • msg #859

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Jin manages a bow with a flourish despite his disappointment in the circumstances, at least giving the lady answering his questions a polite farewell. I knew I should have stuck with the living statue a little longer! If tales were to be trusted, talking inanimate objects were generally more trouble than help, but at least they made interesting things happen.

Jin bounds down to the harbor, gliding across the ground as if he weighed nothing, stopping just astride of the crystalline fellow. He opens his mouth to speak but all he hears is a girlish shriek. Having never been that uncanny at imitating women, he quickly deduces the voice is not his and turns to the flailing figure in the water.

"You're too late for the fair!" he helpfully offers, and then perhaps slightly more helpfully offers a rope.
Levkojen
player, 126 posts
Bride of Dagon
Fri 17 Aug 2012
at 11:35
  • msg #860

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Levkojen is stepping out of the creepy store to get some fresh air while Gethin finishes his business inside. From the elevated streets she has a good view to the events down in the harbor and she witnesses the arrival of the schooner.
A dead man's ship, she thinks, but then its sole passenger awakens and shrieks, splashing in the shallow water.

Filled with curiosity Levkojen calls over her shoulder ''I'm down in the harbor!'' and goes down to the seaside, to assist the elf woman and to hear what strange tale she might have to tell, coming in from the sea on an empty ship.
The man from the store, the one with the foreign words and the brash gestures, is already there before her, and she nods her head in silent greeting.
Farren
player, 19 posts
Seeker - AC21 F16 R20 W20
HP54 HS8 HSV13 pp26 pi22
Fri 17 Aug 2012
at 14:59
  • msg #861

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Farren's disorientation doesn't last long. Only a few moments, and she's standing in chest-deep shallows, breathing hard but relatively calm. Between her flushed cheeks, sodden grey hair, and fiery expression, she's certainly a sight to see- she'd be quite lovely if not for the dark circles under her eyes and her cracked lips.

She looks at the rope, sinking slowly next to where she's standing in the water, and shoots Jin a sardonic look. "Thanks," she says. She swims a few meters closer to shore and wades the rest of the way up to the beach, where she collapses, snoring loudly.
This message was last edited by the player at 18:39, Fri 17 Aug 2012.
DawnStone
player, 355 posts
AC-23, F-23, R-23, W-23
HP-62/62, HS-9/9, PP-24
Fri 17 Aug 2012
at 15:17
  • msg #862

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

In reply to Jin (msg # 859):

Dawnstone rises shaking his head. The spirits where often mysterious when it suited them. When as before, when Dagon took this place-they had been very close to being direct to where he needed to go. Now? There was no need for their Shaman-so he must move along. Service to the land was never ending as the land itself.

The crystal being hears a noise, and looks at this new fellow, standing next to him. Clearly not used to seeing a Shardmind, the almost neckless head and near-featureless face appraise the newcomer.

Do you always yell right next to a stranger's head like that? He sends to the man mentally before he runs off.
Levkojen
player, 127 posts
Bride of Dagon
Fri 17 Aug 2012
at 18:29
  • msg #863

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Levkojen looks a bit perplexed at the elf woman who has collapsed at their feet. She squats down and touches briefly her throat and cheek to check that her pulse is okay, and to get a feel of her skin and flesh - what would it be like to be her? Maybe she would sample it later, surely the woman would be sleeping and out of it for quite a while yet, and no one would be the wiser...

Leaving her just lying here would be somewhat rude though. She gazes unsure up to Jin. ''Maybe we are supposed to bring her to the inn?''
She knows the limits of her strength though and looks around for possible help. Fortunately she spots Dawnstone at the docks, finished with his ritual. The crystal man could surely help them out with his spirits.

''Dawnstone! Over here!'', she calls out and waves with a slender arm.
''Can you help us carry this woman to the inn? She just arrived on that schooner. Sailed it alone. Now she is fast asleep.''


OOC: Also, Dawnstone would perhaps recognize Farren? I'm not completly sure, she might have left shortly before you joined...
Farren
player, 21 posts
Seeker - AC21 F16 R20 W20
HP54 HS8 HSV13 pp26 pi22
Fri 17 Aug 2012
at 18:38
  • msg #864

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

OOC: Gethin's the only one left who'd recognize her.
Autarch
GM, 2221 posts
Sat 18 Aug 2012
at 04:55
  • msg #865

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

One by one, or two carrying one, you make your way or return to the Smooth Sailing Inn and Tavern, now, what a relief, open for business. It's a leisurely morning for the watering hole, a few lobstermen not completely believing the break in the weather, some local greybeards passing their time here as a matter of daily life, and strangers, such as yourselves, thinking you deserve some hot bread and chilled cider.

It looks like the place has new management and a serving staff: a swashbuckling-type with a oiled black mustache, a corset-bursting hazel-eyed wench, and a world-weary career bartender.

Malinda, the tart, takes your orders for early morning fish fritters and promises to return in a "flash." While it's true the place has seen better days, some of the chairs look to have been hastily repaired and there are a number of oddly placed carpets on the floor, you have the decency to hold your tongues.

The hours begin to pass as you get to know each other, the cider loosening your tongues and the fritters your belts.
DawnStone
player, 356 posts
AC-23, F-23, R-23, W-23
HP-62/62, HS-9/9, PP-24
Sun 19 Aug 2012
at 00:22
  • msg #866

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

In reply to Autarch (msg # 865):

Dawnstone's spirits help carry the woman to the Inn. He checks her to see if she is ok, and looks about at the Inn itself as well. It's so different. Before there was nothing but death...and now...like it never happened at all. He mentally sent to those at the table.

Even as the others eat and drink, the mouth-less crystal man can only watch. It was curious went one of the flesh folk let out thoughts he could pick up on. Normally people could easily keep him out of their heads-but unguarded thoughts sometimes 'leaked' out. Like when they where dreaming, or when they felt something very strongly. It was the same as a flesh person seeing the emotion on another person's face.

It was always the eating and drinking that made Dawnstone the most curious. Not to mention having a bit of envy. While never able to feel hunger or thirst, or even age, those that lived seem to have fuller lives than his people. Even when they suffered because of it...
Gethin Ballider
player, 1149 posts
+15, d10+7; Ins26, Per19
AC26, F20, R19, W21
Sun 19 Aug 2012
at 14:05
  • msg #867

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

"Farren!" Gethin had assumed the elven lass was lost to Dagon's call.  He's glad to see she weathered the storm and does his best to bring her around and make sure she gets some seafood and cider in her.

"Well met, stranger.  I am Gethin Ballider, Pelor's servant."  He can't remember who exactly introduced the foreign man.  Was it Levkojen?  Or Dawnstone?  It hardly mattered.  Their group had some unusual alchemy, whereby elements of a certain type were pulled within its field and remained a useful part of the admixture until they evaporated away by some mysterious distillation.  If he was here, he belonged here.

"Pass the fritters, Jin."

Gethin has decided not to be preoccupied by Ashenport's unsettling blitheness.  Instead, he is preoccupied with the heirophant's amulet.  Lena's reaction had been unusual.  Through the first three ages of the world -- the golden age, the silver, and the bronze -- it is said that paladins had to the power to detect the presence of evil.  Sadly, this is not an ability they carried into this fourth age, the iron age.  It is an age of battle and stratagems, not an age for these more rarefied powers.

He slips it around his neck nonetheless, because this is the iron age; and whatever the source, its magic has become an indispensable part of his defenses.  Still, he'll have to look into it.  Eventually.
This message was last edited by the player at 14:07, Sun 19 Aug 2012.
Levkojen
player, 131 posts
Bride of Dagon
Mon 20 Aug 2012
at 20:17
  • msg #868

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Levkojen relaxes with fish and wine and company. The evening is mellow, and she smiles at Malinda who is serving another round. She has stopped caring that the serving girl is likely a sea hag. She is not in the habit of judging monsters anyway, and hardly in the position to do so either. And when all's said and done she's more familiar with the Great Dagon than the strange gods of the land she's now walking on.

Gethin is happily mulling over his wine and Jin is telling large tales from his homeland, only now and then halted by a tart comment of Farren. Eventually Lev joins in and tells them of her own family.

''We respect the Great Dagon, but we certainly don't revere him. While he is part of the Abyss, he does not stem from the elemental chaos - I think he is from outside. From beyond this world. Perhaps the barriers got weakened in the War of the Dawn and he slipped through? Maybe the largest part of him is still outside? We'll never know. But he is not part of the Primordials, and we don't bow to him. My family is older than his presence in this world, after all.''

''In those days the world was malleable and in constant change, before the gods chained the Primordials and tamed the elements. And we changed with it! Part fire, part water and part wind. Then, after the War of the Dawn, the world began to stay the same. And we with it. Only our oldest can still change into the flowing water or the flame of fire - I am young, and I can not. I can only change in little ways. And yet I can't imagine the life you have, the children of the gods, without being able to change at all...''

''But slowly we become like you? And my family loathes and hates you for it. Not because of the gods and the Primordials and the war, but because of that. But I think... if we are already so much like you, then we can not hate you?''

''I might have asked too many questions. A cousin suggested I might want to visit you? Learn more of you. Ashenport. And the rest you know.''

She sighs and takes a sip of wine. ''I could return into the sea. Confront Aieel. He pretty much tried to have me killed, after all, or something very similar to it. But no, now that I am here, I think I prefer to wander the land with you. Because I am curious how it will be, and how you live and think and feel.''
Farren
player, 22 posts
Seeker - AC21 F16 R20 W20
HP54 HS8 HSV13 pp26 pi22
Tue 21 Aug 2012
at 16:17
  • msg #869

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

Farren hugs Gethin's neck when she finally wakes up, which isn't long before dinner. She descends on the spread with abandon, devouring anything in arm's reach. When her finite stomach has forced her to slow down a little, and the conversation comes round to her, she's fills in the gaps a little between bites. "I lost you after we last ate here. I had been traghhfff-" she chews, swallows. "-trapped in Stormcrow Tor, but I didn't know how long. I wanted to find out about my people, maybe find out where they were. I went back to the shrine to Melora, tried to commune with the spirits... but something was very wrong here, I think. I dunno how long ago this was," she adds as an aside. "Maybe you do. Anyways, I opened my mind and heart, you know, like normal, but I couldn't touch the world, I just- got swept away by a voice. I nearly drowned, rode driftwood until I got rescued by a trade ship. They got caught in a storm right away, I didn't even have time to learn their heading. They dumped the cargo, three of them drowned, the last one died of a fever. It was... pretty awful." She interrupts herself to grab the arm of the barmaid as she passes by. "You got any oranges? Grapefruit? Lemons?"
Jin
player, 10 posts
Golden Harvest Acrobat
From the Far East
Tue 21 Aug 2012
at 20:54
  • msg #870

Re: The Lasts Breaths of Ashenport

"Even the gods are strange here!" Jin exclaims, punctuating it with a skyward thrust of his butter knife.

"But it seems whatever ills have canceled my fair have been put to rest? Hmm... if you can write down the events, maybe I can, what is the word, dramatize them.

But I am sadly without contracts, without audience, so without pay and purpose! But if your own tales are to be believed, you are good at the two things I need: finding crowds and finding targets. If I could travel with you, just til a job presents itself, I would be most grateful.

I of course can fend for myself, as I am an actor!"


Seeing the see of incredulous/blank stares, he elaborates.

"A student of the Opera, I mean! We are not some waifish minstrels like the troupes you see, no! As a Golden Harvest Acrobat, I am trained in wing tsun kung fu, iajutsu quick draw, 36 Chambers Acrobatic Free Running, Katori Shinto Ryu, Shaolin Shadow-Leaping Butterfly Knives, Shinobi-Kage ninjitsu, and oratory."
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