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The House of the Rising Moon

"You didn't tell me your digs were so extravagant. I didn't realize I was friends with a forest king." Krayger grins.
"I stopped by for some brunch before I came, scone?" he asks, offering the bag to Askeladd. Despite the length of Krayger's walk it still smells like butter.
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Disasters

"You know we're one at the same, right?" Jaahlyn remarks with a wink as she playfully pokes him in the side with her elbow. "So you're calling me scary." Then she adds as a whisper in his ear. "Which I am."

"As she said, I will be with you one way or the other. So it doesn't matter to me. We're simply extensions of one another." The goat-headed fey raises her hand and in instant their form blurs and shrinks until he's looking like a clone of Jaahlyn. Just completely naked.

[Skye's Apartment]

Seeing her success with her first attack Ava follows up with another slam attack aimed at Skye's other flank as she continues to move towards her opponent.
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Disasters

"Well yes but I don't have to tell you that one aspect of you will be significantly scarier to Sticks, who has never seen them before, than how you normally look." Jim says with faux indignation.
"Do you know how to find his dreams? I assume you do."
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Disasters==> Teddy Dreams

"We're not doing that again." Jaahlyn remarks as Baphoreth turns into her. Though what she's referring to is probably lost to Jim.
It does seem like whatever it is Jaahlyn quickly wants to switch back to what they were talking about. "At some point you will have to tell him. Or are you afraid he'll banish me when he finds out?" She inquires with a small smile. "But of course I can find his dream."

She swings her tail forward as to present the bauble tied to it and gives it a light shake. The hourglass that normally can be seen inside of it disappears and a tiny image of Sticks appears.
"So let's go." She gestures for him and suddenly their surroundings (which were never that clear to begin with) shifts. The naked Jaahlyn-Baphoreth disappearing behind them.

They now find themselves in what appears to be Sticks workshop.
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[The House of the Rising Moon]

"Did I undersell my abode? I admit it was lucky of me to find this house. It came as a gift." From a local god... but he accepted that Krayger will likely discover his nature sooner or later. "And by all means, thank you."

He reaches into the bag to take one of the scones even as he steps aside to let Krayger in. The door opens into an entry chamber, where Askeladd's coats and boots hang. There's a small sitting table and a spiral staircase heading up.
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The House of the Rising Moon

"I'm sure you did something very heroic." Krayger says as he ascends the stairs. He keeps his bag on him and he clearly doesn't have any coat to take.
"Now, don't tell me you're not the type. No one gets to your age with your kind of magical powers without a few great deeds to his name. I will say, you have my mentor beat. I'm still sworn to secrecy but your setup is even grander than his. Though I'm coming here on better circumstances. His I ran into while trying to find a moonlit bond to suppress a curse." That's from the story he told Askeladd at Bloodsong's so he doesn't mind mentioning it.
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Reinholdt wrote: Nov 14, 2023 8:43 am [Chateau Xilo]

Reinholdt smirks a little in response to Atya's lying comment. Perhaps a little too much. "Oh, well I guess I'm going anywhere." Rein gives Daisy a little grin and follows Atya's lead, letting her take him wherever she wants to go.

"Oh, I hadn't thought her nasty at all. Was she acting nasty? I'm afraid I don't speak... uhh... grunts?" Reinholdt says after they escape what he guesses is earshot. "Did she also escape from the iii then? You mentioned some horrible side effects of immortality so..." Perhaps Atya knew someone quite personally who were suffering those effects.

Reinholdt lets out a little whistle when they arrive at the entertainment room. Not to summon birds, but rather at its impressive nature. "I clearly need to start spending more money. This is swanky." Reinholdt is torn between sitting at the bar or sitting on the couch. "Don't need to disturb the wine cellar yet. How about a Dark N' Stormy?" Instead of sitting, Reinholdt lingers a little, walking around a bit to look at the different decorations.

"So, you're a huge fan of birds huh? Any particular reason? Remind me to introduce you to a Kestrel I know some day." Rein stops in front of a painting of the fabled phoenix and snorts a little before looking away to watch Atya instead.
Chateau Xilo

The one downside of the otherwise luxurious house is that it's a little chilly, as due to the age the insulation is subpar. Despite this, Atya's hands are unusually warm on Reinholdt's arm as she steers him along, so it's clearly not bothering her.

"Oh, she's just not very friendly. But I suppose it's not without reason," she says, pursing her lips, "Your assumption is right, she's also from the iii."

Reinholdt's appreciation of the room earns a laugh. "It's nice, right? I blow most of my money on this place so it had better be." With a last squeeze of his arm, Atya heads over to the bar and begins mixing up drinks for the two of them.

"But yeah, I ran into Daisy when I was escaping, they had her in a cage. Wouldn't have made it out if not for her help. I have no idea what exactly they did to make her like she is, or what she was like before, but now she seems happy to look after this place and eat anyone who bothers me." There's a touch of frustration there, as if Atya wishes she knew more, but she's not overly bitter about it.

Atya's chemistry skills clearly carry over to mixology, as the cocktails are already finished- a Dark N' Stormy for Reinholdt, and a Corpse Reviver for herself. Stepping back out from the bar, Atya glances at the pheonix painting and shrugs, holding out the drink.

"You got me, they're my favorite animal. Birds are a lot smarter than people give them credit for, you know. It's not just pretty looks." She takes a sip of her drink. "And maybe it's cheesy, but I've always liked the symbolism of like, freedom and stuff. I mean, who wouldn't want to just fly into the sky and disappear, right?" Turning away from the painting she climbs over the back of the couch, settling down into it with a sigh.
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[Chateau Xilo]

Reinholdt should have kept his jacket on! Ah well. He'll settle for leaning into Atya's warmth instead, finding her above average temperature a suitable replacement. Purrfect for leaning into.

"She sounds like a good friend." Rein gives a little sympathy smile towards Atya, her frustration at being unable to help in return palpable yet endearing. Alas, he doesn't have any easy answers for her or help to provide in that regard. Any more than the heist itself. Perhaps something there will end up helping Daisy down the road.

Taking the drink in hand, Rein gives it a sip. "Mmm... you're good. You're too good." Reinholdt appreciates anyone who gives him alcohol, but someone who can mix it well too is rare. Rein gives one more glance at the painting before moving around the couch to settle in next to her. "I understand what you mean. There's no sensation quite like flying away and being truly free." There's a languishing introspection for a moment before he continues.

"Did you know that in my super cringy backstory, I'm actually a bird? But only in my shapeshifted battle form and I can only unlock that at the very moment of my death, as a testament to my dying people." Reinholdt smirks a little too much as he brings the glass to his lips, trying to hide said smirk and failing. Somebody's making something up for sure.
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[The House of the Rising Moon]

"My age? Do I look that old?" In truth, he's over a hundred, but he doesn't look it. "You're right, though. I have done my share of feats and deeds. I just try not to advertise it far and wide."
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The House of the Rising Moon

"Well, I figured unless your hair was that color when you were born you must be at least as old as I am." Though Krayger's coat is still solid brown with only the occasional gray hair.
"Though my mentor told me I am liable to look how I do now for a few decades if I live as long as him. Frankly I assumed that with a shapeshifter it would be the same." Krayger stops as they reach the top of the stairs, moving to the side for Askeladd to pass him.
"Though...I won't deceive you, I was able to find some clues about you. Animal-shapeshifters with glowing silver tattoos are...specific enough that it wasn't terribly difficult to find a few stories matching." It still took an entire day to filter it out but Krayger has the advantage of knowing how a computer works.
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[The House of the Rising Moon]

Askeladd stops in his tracks, then turns to look at Krayger. He did not expect this. But in retrospect, he shouldn't have underestimated Krayger.

"So you know I'm one of the Lunar Exalted. I suppose I wouldn't have kept it hidden for long, regardless. I try to remain discreet, but I trust you."
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[Old AMEN Base]

The land still bears scars from the climactic battle that saw to AMEN’s decline. Craggy outcrops pocked with divots from explosive projectiles hold vigil over the bones of the fallen org. For miles, a suitably sepulchral silence reigns unchallenged. All that AMEN was languishes in the dark. Lifeless. Despoiled. Forgotten.

Until there comes a forceful rapping, rapping at its tarnished door.
Last edited by FracturedSimulacrum on Nov 16, 2023 3:05 am, edited 1 time in total.
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The House of the Rising Moon

Krayger waves his hand.
"And regardless of my lack of experience, I am a mage who will likely live to be three hundred. Your power was already apparent; I simply have a name for it now. It changes nothing to me, really. But I felt like you should know that I know."
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[Fayyaad's Place]

Cass looks thoughtful as he pops open the wine bottle and pours out two glasses, bringing them over to Fayyaad.
"We have not. But I do know of her. She's working in Skyside right now, isn't she?"
Cass takes a sip, observing Fayyaad with a careful eye. Cass, of course, has his own, very much un-sanctioned operations in Skyside that he knows Fayyaad is least somewhat aware of.
"Did something happen?"
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Reinholdt wrote: Nov 15, 2023 8:33 am [Chateau Xilo]

Reinholdt should have kept his jacket on! Ah well. He'll settle for leaning into Atya's warmth instead, finding her above average temperature a suitable replacement. Purrfect for leaning into.

"She sounds like a good friend." Rein gives a little sympathy smile towards Atya, her frustration at being unable to help in return palpable yet endearing. Alas, he doesn't have any easy answers for her or help to provide in that regard. Any more than the heist itself. Perhaps something there will end up helping Daisy down the road.

Taking the drink in hand, Rein gives it a sip. "Mmm... you're good. You're too good." Reinholdt appreciates anyone who gives him alcohol, but someone who can mix it well too is rare. Rein gives one more glance at the painting before moving around the couch to settle in next to her. "I understand what you mean. There's no sensation quite like flying away and being truly free." There's a languishing introspection for a moment before he continues.

"Did you know that in my super cringy backstory, I'm actually a bird? But only in my shapeshifted battle form and I can only unlock that at the very moment of my death, as a testament to my dying people." Reinholdt smirks a little too much as he brings the glass to his lips, trying to hide said smirk and failing. Somebody's making something up for sure.
"Yeah, she's nice and all, but not much of a conversationalist. It's kind of a relief to hear someone's voice besides mine here." She'd never admit it, but Atya does talk to herself a lot. The big house feels empty enough without it being silent too.

"If you think I'm good now, just wait," says Atya, winking as he settles on the couch. She scoots closer, swinging her legs up to drape them over Reinholdt's lap as he talks. However, her grin fades and her eyebrow raises as he describes his backstory. After a moment's silence she reaches over to lightly punch his shoulder.

"Oh shut up, you were never a bird! If you were any animal you'd be, let's see..." She thinks for a moment. "You'd definitely be a dog. One of those adorable little lap dogs that moms with tacky fashion carry around in their purses." She giggles, taking another sip of her drink.

"So bird stories aside, what is your actual backstory? You know a lot more about me than I know about you." She had to open up a little to convince the heisters of her plan, but all she knows about Reinholdt are his skills and demeanor.
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[Chateau Xilo]

"Oh my." Reinholdt grins at Atya as she steals his lap with her legs and promises a good time.

A grin that fades into a sputter. "A-a-a Dog?! A Dog!?!" Reinholdt is clearly at a loss of words despite his intense desire to protest such slander. A show-dog even... which is probably the best kind of dog, but still! A dog! "I-I I a-assure you, I am no dog! HMPH!" Atya has caught Rein off guard and left him blustering.

That evaporates quickly too as Atya inquires more about Reinholdt himself. He gets grim, though a soft smile forces its way to his lips. "I don't know if you really want to hear about my past to be honest. It's unnecessarily lengthy and a mood killer to boot. We'd end up being here all night." If she truly insists, he'll oblige her, but he would be remiss not to warn her first.
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Shadowcaller wrote: Nov 14, 2023 8:18 pm [Skye's Apartment]

Seeing her success with her first attack Ava follows up with another slam attack aimed at Skye's other flank as she continues to move towards her opponent.
[Skye's Apartment]

The exalt rapidly brings her staff up in the way, then steps in towards Ava, guiding the older woman's staff with her own until the point is aiming towards the floor. If Ava doesn't disentangle her staff from Skye's own quickly, Skye's counterattack is going to strike Ava on the shoulder.
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[The House of the Rising Moon]

"I'm glad that it changes nothing." There was a part of him that worried about it. "You probably suspect why I don't advertise it. People would fear me, seek my favor, defer to me... I have no wish for it here. So I try to help under the guise of a storyteller."

As the two men speak, they emerge on the upper floor. It seems to be a sitting room, with a large table, some comfortable chairs and large windows. Though Askeladd obviously doesn't receive much guests, this is mainly where he entertains those he does.

[Fayyaad's Place]

Fayyaad takes his glass and swirls the wine within thoughtfully.

"Yes. Her main operation there was infiltrating a certain aspiring supervillain... Raven Ebondark. And... to make a long story short, Raven fought a superheroine and detonated her own lair. While Rose was there. She called me to say goodbye before it exploded." He takes a sip of the wine. "She survived, somehow, and I was there to dig her out of the rubble. But while she thought she was going to die, she might have tried to tell me she loves me. I'm not sure."
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The House of the Rising Moon

"Well, I don't think I can really blame anyone for seeking your favor."
Krayger sits down in a chair that he pulls towards the table. He removes from his bag an object he sets down on the table: a hand carved moose of dark brown wood. Channels were cut into it and then filled with a coat of silver paint to recreate Askeladd's tattoos at their full glow. Which while not nearly as high quality as something like Tuuli could likely produce, is still rather impressive since Krayger only really saw Askeladd in warform with all his glowing marks for a few minutes.

"In fact I would very much like it if I was favored enough to see you a little more regularly." Is he getting straight to the point incredibly fast? Well, yes. But the entire point of Minotaur Flirting Plan B is to not beat around the bush.
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Halae wrote: Nov 16, 2023 7:19 pm [Skye's Apartment]

The exalt rapidly brings her staff up in the way, then steps in towards Ava, guiding the older woman's staff with her own until the point is aiming towards the floor. If Ava doesn't disentangle her staff from Skye's own quickly, Skye's counterattack is going to strike Ava on the shoulder.
[Skye's Apartment]

Ava does attempt a fancy maneuver by letting go of her staff but doesn't manage to follow up on it as can't catch it before it falls to the floor.
So she's going to get struck on the shoulder and back away, winching.
"Sorry I couldn't last longer."
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Reinholdt wrote: Nov 16, 2023 8:55 am [Chateau Xilo]

"Oh my." Reinholdt grins at Atya as she steals his lap with her legs and promises a good time.

A grin that fades into a sputter. "A-a-a Dog?! A Dog!?!" Reinholdt is clearly at a loss of words despite his intense desire to protest such slander. A show-dog even... which is probably the best kind of dog, but still! A dog! "I-I I a-assure you, I am no dog! HMPH!" Atya has caught Rein off guard and left him blustering.

That evaporates quickly too as Atya inquires more about Reinholdt himself. He gets grim, though a soft smile forces its way to his lips. "I don't know if you really want to hear about my past to be honest. It's unnecessarily lengthy and a mood killer to boot. We'd end up being here all night." If she truly insists, he'll oblige her, but he would be remiss not to warn her first.
Atya bursts into laughter at Reinholdt's protests. "Touchy, huh? Don't worry, I know you're of the feline persuasion. I've always preferred cats anyway." She clearly knew that he would react in such a way, but her tone makes it clear she's only teasing.

She nods at the warning about his past, her smile not fading so much as becoming rueful. "You're talking to the queen of mood killing, so I know the feeling. If you'd rather keep it fun and flirty, I'm not gonna make you spill your guts or anything."

Pausing for a moment, Atya absently reaches over to straighten a crease on Reinholdt's shirt sleeve. "But you seem like a genuinely cool guy, and I'd like to know more about you. So if you want, we can swap sob stories and make a whole thing of it. Hell, we could even make a tragic past drinking game, see who's more fucked up." She gives his shoulder a squeeze, then meets his gaze. "What are you up for?"
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Post by Reinholdt »

[Chateau Xilo]

Rein is at least not really upset. Just pouty. "Yeah? Is it my feline grace that gave it away?" She'd better start complimenting him now or he's going to start meowing at her door to get let out.

"You'll change your mind quick when you hear it..." Reinholdt sighs, defeated. "You know I can't resist a drinking game." At least, Atya knows now. "Get out a few bottles then." The game will be in trying not to pass out drunk.

"Like many people, I wasn't born in the Nexus. I was out there in my own universe, along with all the other Alikils. That's what we called our species. I was a prince, born to a kingdom embroiled with an on again on again war with our neighboring kingdom. Long, long standing. My birth came with some dark portents according to the court stargazers. Didn't help my older brother and heir to the throne died that same day. Guess father bought into it cause he certainly blamed me on more than one occasion. I believed it myself for the longest time. Why not? The only person who didn't avoid me or deride me was the family doctor when he came to patch me up after one of father's sessions."

Reinholdt pauses to finish off his drink and grab a fresh one, forgetting he should learn the rules to the drinking game first. "He was basically the only friend I had. I'm sure I didn't much make things better by advocating for peace. It was dumb and I was young. Whether or not peace was correct, the nation wasn't ready to hear it. No one was. And they made sure I knew it too. But at the time, I really did mean it. I wanted more than anything to save everyone. To spare people the pain of dying. Of losing a brother they never knew. Of getting blamed for it. I just wanted the suffering I saw in the peoples' eyes to end so badly."

Leaning his head back he sighs and closes his eyes, trying to see her face after so long. "And then there she was. My light in the darkness. A smile, so full of kindness. A soft touch. A gentle word. Who wouldn't fall for her? She made me realize just how much I was truly yearning. The day she said yes was the happiest I had ever been. No... I think it was the first time I had ever been happy. I had no real comparison before. Father was against the marriage, but then I had long stopped expecting his approval. In my greatest act of defiance I went through with it anyways."

A sad smile eeks onto his face as he opens his eyes, the illusion shattering. "Of course there was a reason she stood out when all others shunned me. Why she was so understanding and knew just what to say when. She and the doctor were both long time plants from the other nations. Seasoned spies. And boy was I their jackpot. The wedding went off without a hitch, but the reception, well that was an absolute massacre. I guess there were some ancient laws or traditions of politics that I truly didn't understand at the time. Becoming a princess was just the signal needed for a united coup on our castle. Mother died. Father died. If nerves and nausea hadn't kept me from the poison cake, I certainly would have died. Went to my friend for help as swords were drawn and the blood flowed, but he tried to get me with a scalpel as he explained just how thoroughly he was banging my wife. I ended up falling off the balcony several stories into our moat, more or less left for dead."

"... No. They knew I wasn't dead. God, I wasn't even worth coming after. They knew I had no ability to rally the people under my cursed name. I was worthless to them. I was worthless to everybody. Everybody except the devil I met at the edge of those woods, mostly drowned and half-conscious. Calublufiok."

There's a pause in the story as he glances at Atya. "How many drinks did I win? That was just childhood." The story is longer, but Atya needs time to share too. Besides... booze. Rein's tears for this section of his life are all dry, turned into cold regret or hatred.
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[The House of the Rising Moon]

Well, this is it. This is what Koshal warned him about. And yet, despite expecting it, panic flares up inside Askeladd. What should he do? Can he risk it? Hurting himself again and hurting Krayger now? Maybe it's best to keep a safe distance...

But no. Krayger realized who he is and still made the effort to reach out, where others might falter. And he made something beautiful. For him. And there's no denying that he felt a connection to the minotaur during their meetings. One he hadn't experienced in some time. If it was anyone else in his place, he'd advise them to seize this chance.

"I... accept. Your gift is beautiful and I can only hope to offer you an equal one in time. Though I fear you will find me rusty in the way of courtship."
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The House of the Rising Moon

"You've already met a craftsman this month who could have done better. I can only hope it's a decent likeness to something I've technically never seen." He's seen the bipedal version of Askeladd's moose shape but not the actual animal shape.

"And well. It doesn't do anything either." Oh right didn't Koshal say something about that?
"But I figured there wasn't much I could offer you in practical gifts. I am glad you like it regardless." Krayger smiles, shrugging.
"I've never gotten this far except that one time I told you about in Bloodsong's so you don't have to worry about me having more experience." And that experience...skipped a few steps.
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Post by quillpleasant »

Chateau Xilo

"The grace, and you're far too pretty to be a dog. But if we're being honest, after meeting at the bar I did a light background check on you and Goemog. Have to minimize risk you know." Atya has the decency to look a little embarrassed at admitting that.

As Reinholdt starts telling his story, she listens, not interrupting. After a few moments she rises, motioning him to continue, and steps over to the bar, returning in short order with a tray bearing various bottles and two chemistry beakers, which she sets on the coffee table before joining him on the couch for the rest of the tale.

When he's done, she's silent for a moment, then impulsively reaches over to squeeze his hand.

"Wow, yeah, you weren't kidding. That's some top tier awfulness. Being that close to someone, only for it to be a lie the whole time... I've been through some shit, but never something like that. Hell, how could you trust anyone after that? And to lose your family the same day..." She sighs, then grabs a bottle with a torn off label and one of the beakers.

"Let's see... orphan, that's one. Betrayal is two, massacre is three. Let's do another one for tragic love story, and one more for near death experience." As she speaks, she fills the beaker up to five ounces of liquor. "Now I'll take this, tell you about my childhood, and you can pour for every awful thing I've gone through," she says with a grin before draining the glass. Setting it back down, she gives a shudder.

"Okay, okay, childhood... well, I never knew my parents. Mom was a human, died when I was just a couple years old. Dad was some elven lord who abandoned us because he didn't want to take care of that many bastards. Us being me and my six siblings. I pass as a full elf now, but it was more obvious as a kid, and where I lived being mixed wasn't going to get you many friends. So we mostly stuck together, lived on the streets, which wouldn't have been too bad if my siblings hadn't been absolute monsters."

She absently runs her fingers through her hair as she remembers. "Well, not all of us. Little Simon was mostly alright. But my oldest brother Lucien was a self styled crime boss, started using us as his personal enforcer gang, and we were good at it. Too good."

Staring off through the glass wall to the backyard, Atya takes one of the couches pillows into her lap, leaning on it. "We all had out specialties. I was a firebug. If someone didn't pay Lucien's protection money, I'd set their house on fire. Sometimes they were in it. Sometimes their families were in it. I could make some excuse about being just a manipulated kid, but I knew what I was doing was wrong. And to my credit, I did stop, but only because of Cea."

There's a moment of silence as emotions play across her face- a mixture of sadness and disgust. "Cea was my twin. You know how they say twins have a psychic connection? We had that, but it was only one way. She always knew everything about me, my feelings, my secrets, even where I was. And she used that to torment me. She'd expose every embarrassing thought, spread nasty rumors to anyone I liked, rip my hair out, steal my food. Every day being around her was hell." She digs her nails into the pillow.

"Anyway, long story short, I got fed up. With Cea's cruelty, with being used by Lucien, with living in that filthy hateful city. So I tipped off the authorities to one of Cea's crimes, stole all the money we'd saved up, and took a train out of there. I got away, ready to start a new life, reinvent myself as a better person. I wasn't gonna let my past define who I was going to be. Which is hilarious, looking back, because my childhood was idyllic compared to what came next."

Looking back at Reinholdt, she gives a half smile. "Your call how much to drink, but I think that your story is objectively a lot more sad than mine so far. Mine sucked, but it's nothing compared to getting betrayed on your wedding day or watching your family die." Of course, she glossed over a lot of detail, but her memory is cloudy these days.
horses can attack and eat me
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Murkus
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Re: Home

Post by Murkus »

Shadowcaller wrote: Nov 14, 2023 10:16 pm Disasters==> Teddy Dreams

"We're not doing that again." Jaahlyn remarks as Baphoreth turns into her. Though what she's referring to is probably lost to Jim.
It does seem like whatever it is Jaahlyn quickly wants to switch back to what they were talking about. "At some point you will have to tell him. Or are you afraid he'll banish me when he finds out?" She inquires with a small smile. "But of course I can find his dream."

She swings her tail forward as to present the bauble tied to it and gives it a light shake. The hourglass that normally can be seen inside of it disappears and a tiny image of Sticks appears.
"So let's go." She gestures for him and suddenly their surroundings (which were never that clear to begin with) shifts. The naked Jaahlyn-Baphoreth disappearing behind them.

They now find themselves in what appears to be Sticks workshop.
Disasters==> Teddy Dreams

Sticks is here, in a set of very old-fashioned looking PJs, and he seems to be worrying at a particularly vexing project. He is trying to stitch up a truly gigantic teddy bear, but every time he closes a seam, the teddy gets larger and puffier. He hasn't noticed anyone new arriving yet, such is his focus.
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Keeper
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Re: Home

Post by Keeper »

Teddy Dreams

Jim smiles and knocks on a nearby wooden surface to get Sticks' attention.
"Sticks? It's me and Jaahlyn. I've run into some magical trouble and I need your help."
Jim and Jaahlyn's presence cut through the dream logic a little as they are outsiders entering into the dream rather than being part of it. Hopefully that is enough to pull Sticks' mind to being fully cognizant.
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Shadowcaller
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Re: Home

Post by Shadowcaller »

Teddy Dreams

"Hopefully you don't mind a dream visit. We're trying to avoid detection." Jaahlyn explains.
She is dressed a bit differently than the last time he meet her. Being in some kind of chiton. She smiles apologetically.
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Reinholdt
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Re: Home

Post by Reinholdt »

[Chateau Xilo]

Ah, Rein passed a background check. Well, Atya will probably have heard some of the later parts then. Rein shows at least equal embarrassment to it, but doesn't begrudge the check. It was a wise move.

"Trusting people again? Oh there's a secret to that I suppose. We'll see if it comes up." Reinholdt always did like to tease. But he couldn't explain it yet even if he wanted to. For now, he just squeezes Atya's hand back and offers a sad, empty smile before settling in to listen to her tale in turn.

There's a genuine pity there though as Rein reaches over to rub her arm to let her know he feels for Atya regardless. "Still pretty terrible. Shitty parents, shittier siblings. I always imagined big brothers were supposed to protect you, not use you." That's how Rein had always imagined what a sibling would do. Never had the opportunity to be harshly corrected. "One for parents, one for your siblings, but two for Cea, she sounds like a real nightmare. I'm real sorry to hear you had to put up with her." Reinholdt pours up to four before downing it in one guy with a thick shiver that runs through his spine and emanates out.

"Good on you for trying to at least trying to get out. You've already shown more integrity than I. I... reacted much more poorly." Reinholdt takes a long, steadying breath before continuing. "There was nothing on my world like Calublufiok. Later I would learn that he is what people call a lich, but at the time, he was merely a curiosity standing out horribly for the way he moved on two legs. Regardless, he rescued me from my half-drowned state and nurtured me back to some semblance of health."

"I suppose like anyone else he was really just there to use me, but when Calublufiok said he had a plan to get back at them and end it all, I didn't care. I wanted to do it. Anything to make the suffering stop. I said that to myself over and over and over again. Convinced myself the world was broken with its wars and its lies. That people were miserable and needed saving. I don't know how much was his poison and how much was just me making excuses. Ready to end myself and take any one of those bastards along with me. We infiltrated the castle through some passages I knew about and I led him straight to our most secure vault. Our kingdom's greatest secret."

Reinholdt runs his hand through his hair. "A mad king generations ago created it. A device powerful enough to guarantee mutually assured destruction. More than that. It was straight a doomsday device. Maybe it could have been used as a deterrent but the risk was so great that the court killed the mad king and hid it away, unable to decipher how to safely dismantle it. He was a genius I suppose, in the worst possible sense. Even attuned its activation to his own bloodline. If the court hadn't been enamored with the power promised by the prince in line, maybe they would have done what was actually necessary and eradicated the entire line. Half-measures just don't cut it."

There's a pause as Rein considers how their cowardice and greed cost so much in the end. "Ancient history to me. I think I may have hesitated, but at the moment I was certain I didn't want to live. So I activated the device and waited to be embraced by the cold. It was particularly rude of Calublufiok then to yank me through a portal to his own private little tower dimension. Even ruder as he made me watch as everyone's suffering ended, very, very quickly as all heat in that universe was absorbed into that stupid device."

Reinholdt looks down and blinks a few times. "I... guess I've never really apologized for doing that. Not that there's anyone left to apologize to. Is... is it stupid to miss people who hated you?"

The treasure hunter shakes his head. "I'm sorry." It isn't clear if he's apologizing to them or Atya as he wipes his face on his sleeve and looks up. "Either way, it was my choice and I made it. Killed every last one of my species. Calublufiok seemed to find this most satisfactory and I guess he thought to keep me around. Gave me a cursed star, even. Not a real star of course. Decorative. A five-point, blue accessory. It was very specially made by him. You know how most people forget things over time? Even the memories you cherish or stand out tend to fade into the background. You might call them up from time to time, but the wounds kinda heal a little and the good times need to be done again."

There's an almost manic grin to his face now. "Not with this puppy! Oh no, the cursed star very conveniently allowed me to relive the worst moments of my life over and over and over and OVER AND OVER and over and over and over and over again... in perfect detail. I-I can still see my ex-wife's wedding dress in exquisite HD. 97 frills. That dress had 97 frills, the little dips that curve. Who even needs that many?!"

"I w-wore that star for... for... well time loses a little meaning when you end up hopping through dimensions multiple times. It would be a while yet before I even got to the Nexus and at least two years here."
Time is awful without a consistent sun to stare at. Rein can't even say how old he is.
► SHOW SPOILER
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Meowmai
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Re: Home

Post by Meowmai »

Aurora Alchemi wrote: Nov 09, 2023 8:00 am [Horned Harpy Hassles]

"Different is fine. I can't always fix what isn't there any more, but if it is, I can usually find a way to muddle our way back to the right place. Lemme go get your breakfast." The faun skitters away from the bedside, and gives the flustered birb a few moments peace and respite. As she enters the main living area, she starts to softly sing a little morning song, speaking in some strange language that had the melodic qualities of irish folk music to it, and moving through gathering things for the pair to eat. For a moment the faun considers eggs.... and then things better of it, instead getting some pancakes and bacon ready. She used thick slice bacon, and used the fat to cook the pancakes until they were fluffy and golden. Quickly she fluffed butter together with brown sugar and cinnamon, and heated some maple syrup for toppings. Last of all she gathered some fruit, making a quick fruit salad, as well as a tall pair of ice cool orange juices. The singing and slight dance goes along with her efforts, the faun happy to continue her way through the efforts.

As she did, she focused on calming herself enough that the Satyrlyrri shifted into her faun form. It was a calculated move; mostly because by now Kestrel would know Reuma only took that form when she was very comfy, and also because it would give Kes a way to see that changing forms sometimes didn't have to be a big panic inducing thing. Carefully, she clip clops around the kitchen, humming to herself, the baggy pants now showing just a hint of very soft doe fur around her hips, and making the change fairly inobtrusive. As she begins to pull the bacon off and let it drain of grease on some paper towels, she calls. "Alright deer~ Come on out and get some breakfast. I made a little more of the fruit salad, since I know it always goes missing from the fridge after I make it!" Then she gives a soft chuckle under her breath, laughing at the deer pun, even if she knew she wasn't a deer. Dork.
[Horned Harpy Hassles]

"B-But I like the way I was before! I don't want different!" The words tumble out in a panic as Reuma leaves. Even with all of the pronghorn's efforts, it's hard for Kestrel to keep the stress from bubbling up again. And then she was left alone. Although, not really. At some point, Silver seems to have awoken in the commotion, and the little wolf cub was padding his way over to her, tilting his head in clear confusion and whining. "Hey buddy. Heyyy. It's me... um, I think..." She reached a hand out- no, a wing- towards him. The cub stepped back at first, before sniffing at her. Kestrel held her breath, a little worried, until he nuzzled up into her feathers. She breathed a sigh of relief. That's two people- well, one person and one wolf- who have happily accepted her change. Now she just had to figure out how to do that herself.

That was easier said than done. With some hesitation, she lets the blanket fully drop, stumbling awkwardly to her feet. She winces as she feels her new talons dig into the carpet. Ouch, that was going to cost. Clumsily, unused to her new feet, she made her way to her mirror and gave herself a proper look-over. It's shocking, to say the least. The good news, for as little as Kestrel can reassure herself right now, is that she's still obviously Kestrel. Same face, some rough build, just now... the wings and bird feet. Oh, and a lot more feathers. She's not horribly warped, not ugly or gruesome, just different. It was weird, though. Looking at yourself in the mirror and seeing someone who is so obviously you and yet so different. How was she ever supposed to get used to this!?

It's at this point Reuma calls for her, and Kestrel is glad for the distraction. With great difficulty, she begins to stumble her way out the room and down the corridor. She tries really, really hard to tread lightly, but every other step pokes holes in the carpet or worse, tears up a chunk with it. The smell wafting from the kitchen is undeniably very enticing, and she sheepishly calls back. "It's not my fault you just leave it there, it's to good when it's fresh to waste!" Kestrel shuffles awkwardly in, and even with all her stress her eyes light up at the sight of the pancakes. They look really good. "Oh, thanks! You didn't have to put in this much work, here, I'll- oh. U-Um." Those last words follow a loud crash, as Kestrel had tried to grab a plate only for it to slip from her talons and smash against the floor. Kestrel stared at the claws on her wingtips, the closest thing she now had to hands, before her gaze flicked to Reuma and her eyes filled with tears. How was she supposed to shoot a bow with these? Would she have to give up adventuring?
Bismark wrote:Silence, birb-wench.
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