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In memory of Flyin' Black Jackson
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529070 No. 529070 ID: 8fb35b

thread 1: http://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/448327.html
thread 2: http://tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/res/456798.html
discussion: http://tgchan.org/kusaba/questdis/res/59466.html

I think it’s only been six days since I ran away. Counting the day I ran away on. I think the sixth day is coming. Maybe the seventh. I don’t even know anymore. After getting back to the House Doxedn city, Kehfn set me up in a real nice stranger’s inn and I passed out. This is the first time in a while I got to sleep in a real bed.
137 posts omitted. Last 100 shown. Expand all images
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No. 532129 ID: 57a559

>>532117
But no amputations please! Let us know if you see a significant problem, but it seems to just be a cut. We respect your work and interpretations of wounds, but we would just prefer, at most, a salve or stitches. And something to cover it up. If a muzzle amputation is absolutely necessary for survival, well... we'll think about it.

A dreambug and his posse is hunting you, you don't want to risk having notable scars or amputations. It's not advisable. We want to have the ability to hide and blend in, if he understands. You're not a criminal, you just... offended the wrong people that gave you an invitation to join them and they've become hostile because of it. That's all you're willing to say about that. Can he promise doctor-patient confidentiality on that information? He seems... alright to trust if you can befriend him like you've done with the bandit, McTrinckets, and Maexiks.

Ugh this is my second sage and I feel guilty. But I feel this is important to clarify since he might not really... like the fact you're being hunted and it's important to tell him the inconvenience you've possibly brought him to some degree. I mean, bandit girl knows your hiding something I'm sure, and I'm sure Doxedn can put two and two together.

Umm... sabbs how would you react if you accidentally matchmade this doctor and maexiks by befriending both of them and the doctor decides to visit your dreams for ethical reason? Would you feel betrayed or giddy? Well, if you did that you wouldn't have to feel guilty about you cheating on her by licking McTrinckets boots now would you?
>>
No. 532151 ID: d5c820

Thank him profusely, and promise to put in good word for him if you can. Say you think he is a really nice doctor.

Oh, and uh, make sure to mention the dreambug bothering you is a stalker and to NOT say anything to him about your location, if he ever does end up in your dream.

Did we ever get this doctor guy's name?
>>
No. 532152 ID: 41690e

Recruiting the crazy doctor is crazy.

Also, the other dreambug is crafty. If we let this crazy talk to him, there's no way he won't get useful information out of him that gives away our location.
>>
No. 532568 ID: f0357f

When offering to recruit, mention that you hear the town is planning on running him out of the town, like within the next day or two.

Offer your curiosity of his medical knowledge like offering a mentor-student relationship. Doctor Zoidbug seems like the sort who really appreciates a tombdog with less doofiness and more intelligent sensibility.

It would be so awesome to learn even some basic medical stuff. Ghosts can learn stuff too, right? Iaxio would finally have someone else to talk to incessantly about stuff no one else cares about, and he finally may get a practical excuse for poking your nose! In tradeoff, you would have an loyal ghost buddy with a great memory that would help backup any medical knowledge gained!

Ghosts can stack with tombdogs as an excfeption to the laws of physical interaction, but can they look inside the bodies, or feel the condition of the bodies they are combined with? Would be awesome skills for ghost-doctoring!
>>
No. 533027 ID: 8fb35b
File 137609533822.png - (71.34KB , 500x500 , 160.png )
533027

>Let's bring him along
>This is a super excellent idea.
>I support YOUR FACE.

“So uh,” I say to the dreambug. “We’re leaving town soon anyway, and the talk is this town kind of doesn’t like you.”

“It always ends up like that,” the dreambug doctor agrees. “I do some surgeries and some patients die—which is a risk that every surgery carries, and one I inform every patient of before we begin—and the town or city gets up in arms and I have to go someplace new.”

“Right! So why don’t you come with me and my friends when we leave town?”

Iaxio slaps his cheeks. “What?”

The dreambug nibbles on his tarsus. “Oh?”

“I mean, I can help explain to people wherever we end up more about the surgeries, and make sure they uh, know what they’re getting into, and smooth things over if they go wrong.”

“A public relations assistant! I had never really thought on getting one!”

“So is that a yes?”

The dreambug thinks. “Yes. I have a few more surgeries to carry out here, and then I think it will be time to go along.”

“I’m leaving, like, the morning after tomorrow.”

“The is exactly as soon as it should be.”

I tell him the stranger’s inn I’m staying at and tell him to come by for a visit later so we can plan things out. I ask him what his name is and he says Doctor Mantis. I give him Taliaxix as my name, still, since I should keep things consistent for now. All that settled, Iaxio and I head off.

“Uh,” he says. “Why are you having him come along?”

I shrug. “It seems like the thing to do. He’s a dreambug, we have dreambug problems. Having more friends doesn’t hurt. I mean, most of my life my ‘friends’ were romance novels, a ghost I’d pass by on the road, and a merchant bug I saw once a month. Let me have this.”

Iaxio has this stupid smirk. “Your bug-lust is incredible.”

“Hey!”

“Is the Geofahn bug cute? I never get to see him.”

“What, do you wanna kiss him?

“No—I mean, if you think—I’d watch you make out with a bug.”

“Yeah, well,” I say. “Any kissing I do in my dreams is something you can’t perv over.”

“Shame! So are we done with this business for the day?”

“Yeah.”

“What was that you asked the doctor bug about implanting thoughts? Has that been happening?”

I stop mid-step. Crap-lined ditch-grave I didn’t. Actually. Tell. Iaxio. About what the Geofahn bug said about Maexiks. I mean, Farttown’s festival day was last night, and I haven’t even really have the chance to chat casually with Iaxio since like. Uhm. Since we got to the Doxedn city, really.

>Iaxio was here first so spend some time with him for today
>Go with Iaxio.
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No. 533028 ID: 8fb35b
File 137609536173.png - (143.77KB , 500x500 , 161.png )
533028

Iaxio and I hang out at a kind of park and I fill him in on what he’s been missing out on. Every detail of all the dreams and stuff. He slaps me on the head for not telling him these things earlier, and I slap him back, because like, we were busy with that big fight scene in the forest right after I found out and then I was asleep.

“So I only really know what I’ve seen, and what you’ve told me,” Iaxio says. “I just assumed Maexiks was your friend, and you talked about her like she was. How long’ve you known her?”

“Like, only casually, for like, five years,” I say. “She was a merchant in town who was cool, we hung out when I was hiding from my parents sometimes.”

“I remember those days! You would come running up the road all in a huff, and I’d stop you and we’d talk bad about your family. Hah! I didn’t even know I was part of it back then. Or that I had such a reason to be angry at them.”

I scuff the ground with my boots. “Yeah… my grand-whatever was kind of a dirt-grave huh.”

“I still don’t remember too much about my life,” Iaxio says. He slaps his hands on his lap a few times. “Wandering around. Begging for food. Gambling? A few fights. Some more wandering. I think I can finally remember dying. Most of what’s worth remembering was sneaking talks with you on the crossroads. I wish I could say this adventure’s been fun, but mostly it’s been worrying.”

“Yeah, well, like, a week or two of just relaxing and traveling coming up,” I say.

It’s late afternoon, and I wonder what Iaxio and I should do before I get ready for sleep. I have 104 points of currency right now, which is a lot, but the dream-battle-thing that prayerwoman wanted was going to go for 100 points. Still, there isn’t much that would actually bring me below 100, and the stranger’s inn’s meals are all provided for, so like, we can goof off a little. I was planning on doing stuff with McTrinkets tomorrow, too, but that doesn’t have to be anything pricey and she could like. Maybe pay for some of it. I don’t know.

I could take him to the gambling squares across the little pond here, he might enjoy that. Gambling really isn’t a dangerous pastime, so like, it isn’t like we stand any chance of losing more money than we’re willing. Gambling is sometimes done with like, fractions of points’ worth of currency, anyway.

We could go back to the stranger’s inn and talk to all the strangers, too. I mean, Iaxio has only really had me to talk to for forever, and meeting a whole bunch of new people could be fun for both of us. He could have a chance to like, hang around like a normal dog instead of a beggar on the street or a fugitive’s accomplice.

We could also just wander the streets and hang out together privately too. There are some neat things to look at in the city and we could just enjoy being here together.
>>
No. 533029 ID: ca1c58

Go to the stranger's inn and also don't ever go on a date with your dead relative. What the fuck Sabby. You don't even like men.
>>
No. 533032 ID: cf49fc

>>533028
Hang with Iaxio in the inn. Just chat and relax.
>>
No. 533033 ID: 01531c

>>533029
>don't ever go on a date with your dead relative. What the fuck Sabby.
What you said here was confusing until i re-read Sabhaxlia's last thoughts:
>We could also just wander the streets and hang out together privately too.
>we could just enjoy being here together.

What the hell, Sabby? You're talking like Iaxio's your dead boyfriend or something!


I'm pretty sure Sabhaxlia still likes guys over girls, since as far as Sabby's heart is concerned Maexiks doesn't really 'count' as guy or girl, instead falling into the subconcious categories of 'would fuck'/'would fuck with bag on'/'would cleanse with fire' same as everything else gets judged.
>>
No. 533034 ID: c23ab0

>>533029

It's you who doesn't like men! Sabhaxlia makes her own decisions.
>>
No. 533037 ID: ca1c58

>>533033
I'd like to point out that Sabby has never even hinted at liking guys, and has only expressed romantic feelings for chicks for the entire run of the quest.
>>
No. 533039 ID: a23afd

>>533028
Meet new people!
>>
No. 533040 ID: be1de0

Wander around a bit, enjoy the scenery, try to relax with Iaxio. Maybe gamble a bit, but don't spend all your time on just one activity. End your evening back at the inn, maybe not ~too~ late. Free meals are free meals.

Iaxio's been your friend for like ~years~, and only now is he finally getting a handle on his ~life~. You guys have a lot to talk about.

He obviously likes you, and you like him. Besides, he's cute and he's risked his corpse to help you escape. He's watched over you and helped you every step of the way. I mean, you don't have to go after him in a ~relationship~ way, but you could be closer. You can't give up on men without at least trying ~one~ that you actually like, right? It's not like it prevents you from getting together with McTrinkets or Maexiks later. It just gives you some experience.

And I mean, he's barely related to you anyways.

And he's a ghost.

It's not creepy.
>>
No. 533048 ID: 9ddf68

I say hit the inn as I really don't like the idea of spending money we may or may not need for tomorrow with a good chance we'll get nothing in return, also if we go to the inn we might her some good rumors, like what the hell is going down with House Geofahn.
>>
No. 533057 ID: a01b62

>>533037
I'd like to point out that this is probably almost entirely the fault of the obnoxious suggesters who constantly suggest to make out with or lick the feet of any female characters we encounter. Everything suggested is a thought that runs through Sabhaxlia's head. No one has suggested to crush on any male characters, so she hasn't, because she hasn't thought about it. If the tide of suggestions suddenly turned away from gay interspecies relationships, then yeah, she would start expressing interest in men.

ANYWAY, take Iaxio to the gambling place (if he wants!) and let him see how much he can make off of 4 points of currency.
>>
No. 533061 ID: 91c1b3

Hang out at the Inn, I think he'd like talking to people more than gambling. (though you could ask him yourself)

>>533029
That statement... has just a little bit of merit. We talked about this before I think, but how do you feel relationship wise towards Iaxio now? He's helped you out a lot. I don't think you being blood related needs to come into play since at this point he no longer *has* blood.(as in, being related is only a name at this point) It's really based on how *you* feel though.
>>
No. 533062 ID: 3e4b6e

Wander with Iaxio. Explore the city
>>
No. 533063 ID: 5fd94e

>>533062
sure
>>
No. 533067 ID: 01531c

>>533061
>as in, being related is only a name at this point

That brings up a point: is there some benefit to stacking with relative ghosts?
>>
No. 533072 ID: 92d34d

Go with Iaxio gambling, see how much he remembers. May as well get to know him better, get comfortable and all. Since he's been helping you ghost stack, keeping you alive and will be with you for all your journey, best to trust him without hesitation.
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No. 533074 ID: 57a559

I think we should give Meandraxix's money back before we spend it carelessly. We can properly budget after knowing that. Maybe make an apology or two, but make it quick I really want to go gambling and shooting the shit with strangers that will probably get our asses in trouble because what if they're like bounty hunters there?
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No. 533077 ID: 78bb01

Gallavant about town.
>>
No. 533700 ID: 123d74

Id do a bit of gambling, but not much. Be ready to wander off if Iaxio gets in over his head.

Also, steal that turtle and make it our team pet/mascot.
>>
No. 533930 ID: 8fb35b
File 137635482636.png - (82.44KB , 500x500 , 162.png )
533930

>Also, steal that turtle and make it our team pet/mascot.

I don’t really have the kind of resources to take care of a turtle, but I make sure to pet it before we leave. It looks at me with its single waterface expression. Turtles.

We agree to go back to the stranger’s inn and hang out there until sleep-time. Down across the big bridge. I have to stop mid-way to catch my breath. Iaxio tells me about this one thing he remembered where he accidentally cheated at gambling because he didn’t notice one of his tiles fell on the ground.

We get back to the inn as it’s getting real dark outside, although it isn’t that late—there’s just no way the sun is getting through this thick healthy cloud-cover going on.

The stranger’s inn is cute. The common room deal has a bunch of half-circle couches in uh—I think it’s the birddemon style? I don’t even know. This isn’t really native tombdoggy.

There’s a bunch of people around. They’re mostly dogs in strange colors. There’s a few birddemons over at one side, with their demons hanging around with them. It’s kind of weird seeing demons again after the last one was like, trying to kill us. The birds have cheap mantles with some logo on it—I think they’re from some foreign merchant deal and they just wear those to not look weird here.

The arrangement of the seats forces everyone to sit near one another, and everyone’s moving in an out of conversation with each other. A short corpsebound girl is going around giving and taking orders, and the guests have ghosts mixed in with them.

I’m a bit uneasy about the idea of just putting myself right in the middle of all of these strangers, but Iaxio sidles in and soon we’re—mostly him, though—are in the middle of a big, living conversation.

I don’t keep track of all of everything they’re talking about—for a bit they’re talking about a gambling strategy, and then it’s about this little river-road that flooded, and then it’s about local politics.

I pay attention to that.

Apparently, when House Geofahn killed House Aifix’s heir, it was because House Aifix wasn’t going to let House Geofahn search all outgoing traffic for me. But, all the dogs’ here think that House Geofahn was just using it as an excuse to take over the city. After we snuck out, and House Geofahn failed to find us, it sounds like Aifix called Geofahn out for excessive use of force. Geofahn refused to apologize and just moved their search elsewhere. All the dogs around agree that this is the problem with a house as young as Geofahn being this powerful.

Everyone—even the birds—have a good laugh at House Geofahn’s guys being so ugly the Tashikoxix heir would rather run away than marry one of them. It feels really weird hearing so many strangers talk about me like that.

Iaxio asks if anyone knows what Geofahn is up to now. One dog says there was a big thing that happened in the old Tashikoxix town but no one can agree what it was. Someone says they tried to execute a dreambug but someone else says that happened like a week ago and it was something else.

One of the ghosts says he has a relic near someone who has a relic in that very town, so he disappears for a bit to find out what the story is. The corpsebound girl brings me something to eat in the meanwhile. It’s pretty tasty for cheap stranger’s inn food.

Eventually the ghost comes back and says Geofahn had returned to the town and accused a dreambug there of helping the Tashikoxix girl escape, but it was the same one they tried to pin the blame on the first time, and the town wasn’t impressed. Geofahn dogs tried to push into the town and some of the towndogs threatened to empty the crypt on them and Geofahn retreated.

So I guess House Geofahn came back after their dreambug found out Maexiks was involved and tried to get at her, but the town defended her again. I’m really out of the loop.

Now, the ghost says, there’s talks that the Geofahn running around causing problems are in trouble with the main branch of the house itself, and some of them think there’s going to be civil war and the house might collapse.

The birds seem upset with this, because most of their exports go to Geofahn cities. In a few minutes they’re talking about birddemon sugar crops and which remnant has the best sweets and I stop paying attention again.

Iaxio seems to have fun though. So.
>>
No. 533931 ID: 8fb35b
File 137635487117.png - (74.27KB , 500x500 , 163.png )
533931

Eventually I end up asleep in bed. After a while.

I wake up in the old town I lived near. Maexiks’ town. The sky is barred with these big, twisting bands of silver. I think this is the prayerman blessing going to work on me.

I get up on top of Maexiks’ house (I’m not even sure how. I just walk up it. It’s a dream.) and I can see Maexiks’ constellation between the bands. I guess I’m gonna be letting her in, right?

When I do it, what am I going to say? How am I going to say it? There’s a lot of stuff we have to talk about. A lot.
>>
No. 533936 ID: 735f4f

Start off with a few question tests to make sure its her and not the other guy sneaking in.

Avoid accusing her of anything but mention what the other dreambug said and try to find out if there was any truth to it.

Also find out what the latest news is and how things have been going for her.
>>
No. 533961 ID: 76f779

Call for Maexiks.

If she does/doesn't show, call for that priestess. She said her name was Nel. It would be interesting if she was actually around while invoking Illosi's blessing.
>>
No. 533970 ID: 9ddf68

well if you let her in you're going to have to ask her some things only the 2 of you will know to make sure the Geofahn bug isn't trying to pull a fast one on you again. Start up a simple conversion like you found a quick fix for the other bug but are looking for a more permanent solution and ask her if she has any ideas. After trying to figure out a way stop the Geofahn bug from being a thorn in your side then move on to some of the crap he's done in your dreams, like pretending to be her, sending nightmares at you,... that she's be manipulating you since your childhood for some reason. Then start trying to figure out just how much truth there is to that little claim and why she would do that.
>>
No. 534047 ID: ca1c58

kiss her you fool!

Then tell her all what is going on. I think even though it may bankrupt us, getting the prayerwoman to try and just axe the geofahn dreambug is kind of the best solution right now.
>>
No. 534062 ID: 3e4b6e

Always with the kissing... No.
We can't even trust her right now. Too many bugs in our brain.
Let her in, get the info from her side, but don't reveal your full hand.
>>
No. 534065 ID: ca1c58

I'd like to point out that kissing revealed the fake last time. Her reaction will inform us as to whether or not it's really her better than some random questions that somebody who can get inside our head may or may not know the answer to.
>>
No. 534074 ID: 58c979

>>534065
But the fake may be ready for kissing this time, now that he might be expecting it.

If you want to speak to her, call Maexis and go with question asking.
>>
No. 534104 ID: 96c896

>>533931
Oh just ask her where you slept at her house. The Geofahn bug still doesn't know the correct response.

As for what else to say, tell her the Geofahn bug is a huge jerkbutt and has been sending nightmares at you the entire time, but he did bring up one thing that you're curious about. Tell her you can't remember who taught you the dreambug language, and ask if she knows who did. Optimally she will admit to being your tutor, and that she was hired to do it. If she denies it, press the issue- we were ONLY taught the dreambug language, and the Geofahn bug got into your dreams via a well-used door.

If it turns out she wasn't hired to teach you, then press her even further. Tell her that the Geofahn bug accused her of implanting thoughts about not wanting to marry your fiance, and if that's true it would certainly explain why you can't think of a real reason to hate him. If she admits to THAT, ask her WTF, WHY.

Also no kissing until you're sure she hasn't been mind-controlling you.
>>
No. 534368 ID: 3b69fe

First priority is establishing it really is her. Second priority, making sure she's okay. Third priority, status update regarding your location and Geobug jerkiness. Fourth priority, future plans. Fifth priority, kisses.
>>
No. 534468 ID: 8fb35b
File 137653176098.png - (77.54KB , 500x500 , 164.png )
534468

>Call for Maexiks.

The moment I feel like I’m asking for her to appear she does. The silver aurora opens and Maexiks just kind of drops down on top of the house with me.

>First priority is establishing it really is her.

“Is it… you?”

She’s like, already hugging me. “Sabhaxlia! What is this?”

I’m not going to tell her what it is without confirming who she is first. “Are you really Maexiks this time?”

“What do you mean?”

I explain about the fake Maexiks thing happening like, non-stop. I ask her some questions about stuff she would only know, and she like, pulls out answers going years back. She answers how we met and tells me how she had to buy a weird mix of dyes to get my mantle’s color. There’s basically no way this isn’t her. Unless the Geofahn bug can overcome the prayerman magic and draw up my memories of Maexiks and. I don’t want to think about the situation being that hopeless.

>kiss her you fool!
>Fifth priority, kisses.

I’m about to, but, like.

>Also no kissing until you're sure she hasn't been mind-controlling you.

I need to know this first. I need to know what’s up with this.

>Second priority, making sure she's okay.

I ask her how she’s doing.

“I’ve been terribly worried! The Geofahn bug has been keeping me from the dreams like you had said. He has even hid you from me, and it has not been easy to look at your future without him interfering. I had so little idea what was happening to you.”

>Then tell her all what is going on.
>Third priority, status update regarding your location and Geobug jerkiness.

I tell her what’s been going on—with the Hefehxn, with meeting up with the bandits, fighting the guys, Hefehxn giving up, the dreambug attacks (again), the prayerman thing. I tell her all of those details. She sounds legitimately upset at all of this, I mean, and she asks me what I’m planning to do next. But.

>that she's be manipulating you since your childhood for some reason. Then start trying to figure out just how much truth there is to that little claim and why she would do that.

It’s hard to focus my thoughts on it. I want to just pretend like things are okay, and start planning with Maexiks the next steps, but I have to ask this.

“So like, but the Geofahn bug, one of the things he did, he said uh. That I only knew the dreambug language because you’ve been invading my dreams since I was a child. And that you’ve probably been like. Manipulating me. Those are just more lies, right?”

“What! Of course they are,” I want her to say. “He will say anything to trick you!”

“Oh,” is what she actually says. “What exactly did he tell you? How did he find out these things that he told you?”

It isn’t the answer I was really hoping for. “Just. That. That you’ve been invading my dreams most of my life and have been uh, controlling me. Through them. That you like, made me run away.”

Maexiks lists away from me. “He said that.”

“But it’s. He’s just. Trying to. Turn. Me. Against. You’ve been doing it haven’t you.”

Maexiks starts backing down the side of the house.

“Maexiks, no. What happened? What was—”

“I didn’t mean to,” Maexiks says.

“Yeah, no, stop,” I say. “Stop walking away. What’s. What’s anything?”

I know Maexiks well enough to know she’s trying to compose herself. “I first saw you in town fifteen years ago. You were a child and I was too. You seemed to have no friends, and I was too afraid to approach you, but I found you in your dreams that night and spoke with you there. Most nights you did not remember me, and I would introduce myself to you each time.”

“I don’t even remember anything like that.”

“Most dreams are not remembered, Sabhaxlia. But thoughts can linger, even from dreams you forget. Very soon I was moved away from you, but I kept in contact with you through dreams. It was not every night but it was many nights. Eventually we could speak in my language in the dreams. When I was free to, I went back to the town I had met you in. I set myself up as a merchant and influenced you to visit me, so we could speak outside of dreams too.”

“Uh…”

“For years, each night you would talk of how unhappy you were with everything. I never felt happy in this remnant either. But I was happy to finally have a friend in the waking world, even if you did not know how much I cared for you. But I think you understood, at least, how uneasy I felt in this remnant. Even while you were awake you knew that.”

“Uh.”

“When you started to dream about running away I encouraged it. I helped make dreams for you where you escaped and were free from your family and your remnant. I was never terribly good at controlling dreams, but I did help them stay pleasant for you.”

“Oh.”

“In the last few months I saw you struggling with the engagement. That you were afraid of taking the weight of your family’s crypt. I knew that you had always wanted something other than being a housedog’s wife. To be more than another generation in a family line. I knew that this remnant was unpleasant for you.”

“Uh.”

“And it was so much worse for me! I could never be one of you dogs. When your town accepted me they gave me a mantle with stripes on it to show that I could never be more than a stranger! So.”

“I.”

“So I did everything I could to ensure you would run away. You would find some place for yourself, and.”

“And?”

“And when House Geofahn found out that I was responsible, they would kill me, and I could be with you forever in your dreams. But you hid my responsibility, and when Geofahn tried to kill me, twice now this awful town has kept me alive.”

I. Uh.

Uh.
>>
No. 534469 ID: 57a559

>>534468
Is... is it really an awful town? I mean they defended you so it's like really weird. Does she really feel that way still? She could try and run away to find a town she likes too, a home. Though she'd be in grave danger.

Tell her that the both of you basically have started a civil war within the Geofahn's. They probably won't be back ever. The main branch and I guess your local branch that was going to have the marriage are fighting because reasons the strangers told you.

Maexiks, I ponder, can you speak with the Geofahn dreambug? Ask if he knows anything about the disputes between the branches? We have to sit and think how to get him off our backs. Tell him maybe it'd be wiser to get the branches working together again by getting them to forget about Sabhaxlia. Retrieving Sabhaxlia to appease the local branch's outrage will prove far too troublesome to be done quick enough to quell the damaged relationship between the branches. No, they must focus their efforts entirely on diplomacy and making peace, forgetting about Sabhaxlia and forgiving her and leaving her be. Only the Geofahn Bug can do this, through his manipulative dream powers. He has to manipulate the local branch. It is the best way to ensure his house's survival, which I'm sure he wants. This is as close we'll get to advising the Geofahns like he wanted, assuming he actually wasn't just saying that because his real goal was to retrieve and kill us so the local branch would calm the fuck down.

Maexiks would have to do that because well, honestly, he'd probably be the most honest with the dreambug than actually us. Maybe even reveal more. And blame his inability to block her for a day is because she's gotten more powerful, I don't know Maexiks you're a merchant how is your bullshitting skills?
By the way, we forgive you, because it sounds like you just help push us towards a direction we were already going. (Assuming she's not lying here either, I don't fucking know)

Oh hey Maexiks, we met a really cool nutty dreambug doctor would you like to meet him?
>>
No. 534472 ID: 3e4b6e

Well now I feel justified for calling her a creepy stalker bug chick.

Anyways, now you know the extent of the crazy you wanted to stick it in. Let's assess the situation, Geobug was right in that she was manipulating you, your friend is clingy and has a death wish, Nel's powers work, Zoidbug was also right, the star signals are a good way to figure out who's in your head.

I suggest getting angry.
>>
No. 534474 ID: cf49fc

>>534468
Well that was an... insane and horrifically unethical thing to do. Quite possibly one of the worst crimes it's possible to commit. Tell her off for rejecting the townspeople when they clearly like her and want to protect her, and have done literally everything they could for her to make her be one of them. It's on her head, not those of the Town.
>>
No. 534475 ID: 3677de

So basically she was lonely and friendless and a little kid when it started and so were you. It isn't like she was some sort of dangerous mastermind, and apparently a lot of this was stuff you talked to her about in your dreams that you just don't remember.

So it's not like some kind of evil scheme, or even her being evil, you were just way better friends than you knew because you didn't remember a lot of the conversations from when you were kids.

She didn't implant the idea to run away in your head, all she did was help convince you that you were capable of doing something that you wanted to do all along anyway.

She cares a lot about you, and was only trying to help you be able to make your own choice. Your decision to run was stacked against a million generations of tombdog society and culture that tells you you don't have the right to make your own choices against your future was balanced by her making dreams that you wanted to have anyway, so honestly, you're still the one who chose to run away, she just helped balance against your cultural pressures anyway.

She needs to know that you aren't mad at her for doing that. Just think about everything you've accomplished since you've left. Sure, a lot of stuff has been really unpleasant, but you've also actually accomplished stuff. You've made a real difference in the world. And you're only just starting. That's thanks to her help too.

I don't think there's anything sinister here. It's just a friend from a totally different culture, who maybe didn't make the best decision in her way to advise and approach you, but it wasn't out of any sinister motive, it was only out of love, and I think that's nothing to get mad at her about.

So, yeah. Also tell her the fact that the village has shown support for her those times proves it's not so terrible after all. Also that you don't want her to die she needs to get over that crap. She needs to practice dream powers so she can help you out more in the future, if she's really invested in your success, she should train herself to be better at dream powers.
>>
No. 534477 ID: 55539d

Well that sets a few cogs whirring.

Despite apparently being utterly butterly batshit bug-girl raises a point; no matter where you go you will never fit in. Accepted, yes. Perhaps even genuinely liked, but never quite one of the pack. Geofahn isn't going to give up or call off their bug it seems.

Perhaps getting out of the remnant entirely wouldn't be a bad idea. You decidedly do not seem like the kind who would be happy pinned under the ettiquet and strictures of Tombdog society, which is all you're going to find no matter where you go in the remnant. Maybe the life of an adventurer would suit you better? You're already well on the way. Look, you even have a scar!
>>
No. 534478 ID: 9ddf68

...OK then first off, never talk about how you want to comment suicide or I'll beat the stupid out of you. I didn't run away Just so you could be my scapegoat and die, if anything that would have turn me into a hopeless wreck or something.

Second I'm not mad at you for 'making' me run away. You said it yourself I was the one who wanted to run away you just acted on something that was already there. I'm not pleased at what you did but I'm not mad either.

Lastly if you want to make this up to me you're going to help me get rid of the Geofahn bug. I'm not mad that you invaded my dreams when I was young, we were both lonely and I got a good friend out of it. I'm not mad that you made me run since, truth be told I probably would have down it anyway and if not before I got hitch likely after when I found how miserable I would have been. You just made the choice easier. What I am mad about is how you did all of this just so you could KILL yourself. I mean come on, you can still visit our dreams when you're alive and how do you think I would feel if I found out that my actions resulted in the death of my best friend. Don't care if you would still be with me in my dreams just how do you think I would have been if I found out my best friend had me murder them?
>>
No. 534479 ID: 96c896

>>534468
Okay, look. The more we hear about Geofahn the more it sounds like not being with them is a good thing. They are immoral bullies. And we've established that your family is mostly dying out mostly because they wouldn't swallow their pride. So it's probably a good thing you didn't marry that guy.

That said, Maexiks what the HELL?! She was invading your dreams regularly as a child, because she was too chicken to talk to you in the waking world! She's been manipulating you just because she feels uncomfortable in the tombdog remnant, and can't accept that the tombdog culture has NO WAY of accepting other races into a town other than a striped mantle. That is the best she can get. The doctor told us future-telling is done by looking at how personalities react. Maybe the reason why she expected to die is because she thinks the town wouldn't protect her. Yet they did. Maybe it's time she reevaluated her relationship with the town. They adopted her, she's not a stranger. If she were to wear your new family's colors, they would be striped too. Unless I guess she marries you? Is that a thing that can happen? If she's so shook up about the town protecting her, why doesn't she just admit that she helped you! Geofahn would definitely kill her then.

Also now it's impossible to tell if these feelings you have for her are legitimate or if it's because of her regular presence in your dreams. Also she totally lied to you in that first dream we can remember of her.
>"This was much harder to do than I had expected. I’ve never been a tombdog's dream before."
How come you've been remembering all these dreams now, anyway? It's weird that you didn't remember even a single one of her before then. Was she making you forget, because she couldn't live up to what she was doing? Then all those conversations you two had, between what should have been friends, were taken from you because of her selfishness and cowardice.

That said, she has saved your life with her future-telling. Try not to be too hard on her. It would be nice if you could remain in contact, so that you don't lose her help. Romance is right out, though, and friendship is a stretch right now- she has a lot to make up for. It wasn't even your choice to run away. She made that choice for you, just like when your mother set you up with that Geofahn guy.

I would like to ask her about the plan to fight off the Geofahn bug with the prayerman dream magic lady. How likely is that to work, and is there any way we can improve the odds?
>>
No. 534482 ID: ab1da0

Hrrrm...I have a thought.
Maexiks wants to be with us right?
What's to prevent her from just-packing up and leaving and coming here exactly again?
>>
No. 534483 ID: 55539d

>>534482
House Geofahn. If she was caught outside of the village they'd probably kill her. They already tried but the villagers stopped them. Twice.
>>
No. 534485 ID: 6a694e

>>534482
Yeah, dont dreambugs have wings?
>>
No. 534488 ID: 13b599

Do we have any evidence that this sort of behaviour is abnormal among dreambugs? Their dreams have to do something. Why not reach out to people? If her description of events is accurate, her visits weren't even unwelcome at the time.
>>
No. 534489 ID: 41690e

Okay. So. Um. The trying to make friends with you in your sleep thing you could deal with. You guess. She is a dreambug after all.

But her deliberately influencing one of the most important decisions of your life? That's... a lot harder to accept. And this whole suicide plot to be with you is just nutters.
>>
No. 534495 ID: 735f4f

Aww she was a lonely kid and wanted a friend. She did get a little stalkery there but mostly just encouraging you the only way she knew how.

First yell at her for trying to kill herself. Tell her if she wants to be with you she should pack up her stuff and head your way once its safe. Live your life the best you can before you get stuck as a ghost or in dreams. Also the town does care because they are sticking up for her at great risk to themselves.

Secondly tell her while all this stuff is a big surprise you don't hate her. Might take a bit to get used to the idea but you will cope.
>>
No. 534497 ID: e3aff6

Ok... this gives me more of a feeling of disappointment than anger. She does seem to care about you, but caring about someone isn't the only thing that makes a healthy relationship. A relationship needs respect as much as caring, and controlling someone's life without telling them because you know best is the complete opposite of respect.

And you know? Even though she saw all your troubles when you were young, she doesn't seem to have really understood them at all. Your family cared about you in their way, and even the buttjerk suitor showed some concern for you, but the reason why you couldn't get a long with them was largely about that need for respect. Your mother pushed you towards what she though of as a successful path in life, simply assuming that her idea of success was the same as yours. The suitor attempted to trick you to make you like him more, trying to make you feel better without considering how utterly demeaning it was to your autonomy and intelligence. They were all trying quite hard to 'help' you, but it just wouldn't work because of their complete disregard for your actual thoughts and decisions. Maexiks's attempts to help you with your problems had exactly the same thing wrong with them as your original problems; someone trying sincerely to help you with what you surely want without ever thinking to actually ask or discuss it with you.

I feel like forgiveness is not completely out of the question, but it will take some time and need some serious changes in the nature of this relationship.
>>
No. 534536 ID: c23ab0

So on the bright side, it appears Maexis accidentally made you a lesbian.

On the dark side, it appears Maexis accidentally made you a lesbian.
>>
No. 534570 ID: be1de0

When you think about it, the worst that she's done is been clingy, encouraged you to be independent and follow your heart, and given you pleasant dreams. What a horrible person. ;Y

Yeah, she's a little weird, but. Whatever. She may have influenced you to be more of who you are right now, but it's not like she's brainwashed you into being someone who you weren't.

I think, honestly, the problem here was a lack of communication and a lack of consent. But she obviously cares for you a lot, and didn't mean for any harm to come to you.

Give her a big hug. Point out that being alive and talking face to face obviously means ~something~ to her, otherwise she wouldn't have wanted to meet up with you outside the dreams. And it means something to you, too. You want her to be safe, to be alive, and to see her again in person someday.

She shouldn't be angry at the town dogs for protecting her. She may be a "stranger", but that's a technicality of a tombdog culture that's centered around biological relations. She's been marked as an outsider-under-license and for all intents and purposes "adopted" by the town as a whole. There's obviously a sense of community there, and they must like her and consider her a member of the town in good standing. She's obviously accepted, so what's her complaint? What more does she want? Would she rather be part of an actual dog family? Does she want to be part of ~your~ family? The fact that you're running away from them should be enough to show that being part of a family isn't always a good thing. :Y

Find out more about how she feels about you. Does she love you? Does she want to be romantic with you?

Can she run away and meet you? Is that too dangerous? Tell her to be honest. Threaten that you'll never forgive her if she gets herself killed on purpose.

Honestly, if you wanted to, you could probably blame everything on Maexiks and go back to Geofahn and save your family and... but you still don't want to do that, do you? Even if Maexiks got what she wanted and lived in your dreams, the Geofahn bug would probably want to do something to prevent Maexiks from ever seeing you in the dream wold again. She'd be cut off.

Oh, and while you're at it? You kinda need some help. A little bit of dreambug-vision might be useful when it comes to your future. If she's got any good ideas how to deal with this geofahn bug, and whether or not the Prayerman stuff would work, that would be helpful.
>>
No. 534585 ID: 41690e

Also, how awful can the town be if they care about her enough to protect her? And if this Geofahn business were over, she'd be free to hang out in your dreams whenever she wanted, without these crazy die for you scheme!

...I mean, just cause dogs can ghost and bugs can dream doesn't mean either of you should rush to get your life over with.
>>
No. 534688 ID: 26d11e

Since when have these dreams been pleasant? You know she's still hiding things from you and how do you know she hasn't been sending nightmares at you to control you? Control you into running away. control you into liking her.
I wouldn't be surprised if she's done worse.
>>
No. 534757 ID: da4ec6

Congratulations guys, you have just allowed an enemy agent to successfully turn us against one of our only allies.

What Maexiks did is more than a little creepy, but she's also valuable enough that we can't afford to lose her.
>>
No. 534789 ID: cf49fc

>>534757
What Maexiks did was done out of loneliness, fear and rejection. It was also quite literally thought-control. It is POSSIBLE to forgive Maexiks, but she must realize that what she did was ABSOLUTELY WRONG, and come to terms with her feelings of rejection and sadness.
>>
No. 534790 ID: 01531c

Meaxiks is a horrifically unbalanced person.

Let's fix that.
>>
No. 534792 ID: da4ec6

>>534789
Yes, I get that. But if we react too aggressively we might scare her off, and that will probably not end well for either of us.
>>
No. 534844 ID: ca1c58

Yeah it's pretty obvious she doesn't feel great about having done it. Also keep in mind a lot of it was from talking to us in our dreams. She wasn't just, out of whole cloth, implanting things in our dreams. I think she probably knows she was in the wrong anyway though. Yelling and shouting and being all pissed off won't help anything and only serves to lose us an ally.
>>
No. 534860 ID: af8414

Hug the bug
>>
No. 534885 ID: 91c1b3

>>534789
I agree with this entire post. Even if she did it to help us she never asked or even mentioned it to us. It's not right to manipulate people, even if it's for something they want. I also agree that Maexiks needs to admit what she did was a really bad thing before she should be forgiven. But I think we should help her to get to that point if she needs it.
>>
No. 534890 ID: ca1c58

>>534789
>>534885
It wasn't actually thought control though. From what Maexiks said, she was more or less talking about Sabby's problems with her while Sabby was asleep. She was reacting to fears and troubles that Sabby was bringing up, it's just that Sabby didn't remember them. Although it wasn't necessarily the right way to do it, it definitely wasn't "literally thought control."

>For years, each night you would talk of how unhappy you were with everything.

>When you started to dream about running away I encouraged it.

>In the last few months I saw you struggling with the engagement.

>So I did everything I could to ensure you would run away.

But that is not making her run away. She pushed Sabby, sure, and Sabby didn't remember it when she was awake, sure, but she didn't literally control her thoughts at all.
>>
No. 534918 ID: e97f9d

>>534890
She most certainly influenced them, though, intentionally. Which she probably should not have done. It may not be exactly mind control, but it's still creepy. Not that I think we should cut her off.
>>
No. 534923 ID: 96c896

Okay so we've boiled it down to "Maexiks manipulated Sabhaxlia into doing what she already wanted to do but wasn't doing because of cultural pressure"? Also, Maexiks cared a lot about Sabhaxlia but never told her in the waking world, instead electing to live out her relationship in the dreams that would always be forgotten. It's depressing, really, but also disappointing. Why didn't she just SAY something?

Lastly, did she say she was trying to get Sabhaxlia away from her remnant? What remnant is Sabby supposed to go to, then?
>>
No. 535200 ID: 8fb35b
File 137677923047.png - (71.10KB , 500x500 , 165.png )
535200

This is a lot to take in. I’m not even sure where to start. I can’t even think about the other stuff first. The way she talks about the town snags in my head.

>Is... is it really an awful town? She could try and run away to find a town she likes too, a home.

“I mean.” I stumble on my words. “Is the town that awful for trying to protect you?”

>how awful can the town be if they care about her enough to protect her?

“They risked themselves to protect you, that’s not. I can’t.”

>>Tell her off for rejecting the townspeople when they clearly like her and want to protect her, and have done literally everything they could for her to make her be one of them.

“They obviously want to accept you! That striped mantle means they accept you as one of them. What more could you want?”

She’s just clinging to the side of the house. I can only see her face and forelimbs. “I thought you would have understood. I am an outsider-under-license, a stranger they have all agreed to not be afraid of. They protect me because they protect their independence. They do not care about me. There is no place for me among them. I have no ghost to give them, so I am an intrusion. You are a dog. Even if you are uneasy here, it is your remnant. You don’t understand. You don’t understand what it is to be an alien.”

>Do we have any evidence that this sort of behaviour is abnormal among dreambugs?
>The trying to make friends with you in your sleep thing you could deal with. You guess. She is a dreambug after all.

“Speaking of alien, is what you did to me okay by dreambug standards? Is that just something else I don’t understand?”

>Maexiks what the HELL?! She was invading your dreams regularly as a child […] She's been manipulating you just because she feels uncomfortable in the tombdog remnant

“Because, what I’m understanding from this, you were manipulating me? You were actually seriously trying to control me?” My voice is starting to break. It’s getting hard to keep speaking clearly.

> Also now it's impossible to tell if these feelings you have for her are legitimate
> control you into liking her. I wouldn't be surprised if she's done worse.

“So what about all these… feelings I’ve been having for you? Wanting to like. Aaaaah. That kissing? Touching? Am I only doing that because you trained me to? Dig me a grave I licked you the first night I ran away it just felt natural was that only because you trained me to do it in my dreams? What sort of things have we done in dreams that I don’t remember?

Maexiks’ voice is a little whistle. “I didn’t.”

“What have we done that I don’t remember?”

“I didn’t.”

>How come you've been remembering all these dreams now, anyway? It's weird that you didn't remember even a single one of her before then. Was she making you forget

“How come I don’t even remember the other dreams? Was that something you were doing on purpose? Maexiks?”

“Yes.”

>Then all those conversations you two had, between what should have been friends, were taken from you because of her selfishness and cowardice.

“So you were okay with just having a one-sided friendship? You wouldn’t even let me remember that we were friends? I meant so much to you but all I knew you as was a merchant I talked to sometimes! Why? Why?”

“Because it was too late. I knew if I told you, at any time I told you, it would have been too late. I had been doing it all your life. It was always too late to tell you the truth.”

>So basically she was lonely and friendless and a little kid when it started and so were you.
>Aww she was a lonely kid and wanted a friend.

“My… entire life.”

>So it's not like some kind of evil scheme, or even her being evil, you were just way better friends than you knew

“I wish you had told me. After a certain point, we were both too grown up to not. I.”

>Maexiks's attempts to help you with your problems had exactly the same thing wrong with them as your original problems; someone trying sincerely to help you with what you surely want without ever thinking to actually ask or discuss it with you.

“Was it even my choice to run away?”

> Control you into running away.
>But her deliberately influencing one of the most important decisions of your life?

“Did I even decide anything in my life?”

She’s hiding herself entirely on the side of the house now. I can’t really see her. “I don’t know.”

>Despite apparently being utterly butterly batshit bug-girl raises a point; no matter where you go you will never fit in.
>She didn't implant the idea to run away in your head, all she did was help convince you that you were capable of doing something that you wanted to do all along anyway.
>She did get a little stalkery there but mostly just encouraging you the only way she knew how.
>When you think about it, the worst that she's done is been clingy, encouraged you to be independent and follow your heart
>The more we hear about Geofahn the more it sounds like not being with them is a good thing.
>You just made the choice easier.
>She pushed Sabby, sure, and Sabby didn't remember it when she was awake, sure, but she didn't literally control her thoughts at all.

“… no. This was still my choice. I can’t believe you’ve completely made me who I am. And who I am, it isn’t someone who was okay with how my life was going. You encouraged me to do what I wanted to do, when it was already what I wanted. Maybe I wouldn’t have had the courage to do it without you. I wish you had told me all those nights, though. Had let me remember them.”

> Romance is right out, though, and friendship is a stretch right now- she has a lot to make up for.
>It is POSSIBLE to forgive Maexiks, but she must realize that what she did was ABSOLUTELY WRONG
>Yeah it's pretty obvious she doesn't feel great about having done it.
>she obviously cares for you a lot, and didn't mean for any harm to come to you.
>Ok... this gives me more of a feeling of disappointment than anger.

I sit down on top of the house. “But I mean. I’m just. More disappointed. And upset. I’m angry, but. I think you did a lot of things wrong, but I don’t think it was for any wrong reasons. Just. I’m not going to be okay with this right away. But I mean. I guess of all the people manipulating me—my family, Geofahn, the whole remnant—at least you were actually doing it for my own good. So. Get back up here.”
>>
No. 535201 ID: 8fb35b
File 137677925990.png - (76.03KB , 500x500 , 166.png )
535201

Maexiks comes up next to me.

>Hug the bug
>Give her a big hug.

I want to, but… I can’t. Not yet. “I’m not okay with this all yet,” I say. “And we have a lot of talking to do before we’re friends again. That you were planning on getting yourself killed so you could be in my head forever is creepy and upsetting even if what you were doing was just helping me with my problems, okay? But like. If we want a chance to talk about anything ever again, we need to deal with the other dreambug.”

“Yes,” she says.

“The prayerman who’s keeping the other dreambug out right now—she offered to fight the Geofahn bug. For like, a lot of money. But if she can beat him, that means he’s out of my dreams and mind and everything forever. What do you think?”

“I don’t know.”

“Look I know we’re all upset but we have to focus. We got this night and this night only to plan, so. Please. Help me again. If you don’t, it doesn’t matter if we make up or not. We just won’t see each other again anyway.”

“I don’t know if a prayerman can defeat a dreambug. I do not even understand what that would involve. I do not know prayermen. I do not understand prayermen. I do not understand this barrier that is around your dreams.”

“So. No advice at all?”

“You can speak to him. You can convince him to leave you alone.”

“I don’t. I uh. I don’t think that’s going to work.”

“You have seen the Geofahn bug?”

“Well, yeah?”

“His mantle is solid colors.”

“So?”

“It is nothing important to tombdogs like you. But it is very important to strangers who can never be tombdogs.”

“Oh? Oh. Oh! You mean—”

“My dreams of me do not wear my mantle. In his dreams, he wears a mantle he does not own. On his waking shoulders I think his mantle must be blue barred by green. When I spoke to him, he seemed very sure that he could earn more acceptance by returning you.”

“He wants to be a full member of the house? And he’ll only ever be an outsider-under-license?”

“I am not sure what you need to say to drive him away. But I am sure if you speak to him, and press him on the house he wishes to belong to, you may find something. But maybe the prayerman can simply defeat him. It is powerful enough magic to do this.” She tilts her head up at the sky. “It might be enough to simply remove him entirely.”

>What's to prevent her from just-packing up and leaving and coming here exactly again?

“So why don’t you just. Come and meet up in person?”

“I don’t know.”

I tell her where I’m going, and where I’ll be, and what my plans are, anyway. I think I trust her enough that, if I can’t solve the dreambug problem, I’d like to at least see her in person and see if things can be worked out or not.

We sit and watch the silver aurora for a little bit. Maexiks announces she’s going to leave, and then she’s gone, though, before I can even say anything else. It’s. It’s still a lot to think about.
>>
No. 535202 ID: 8fb35b
File 137677928139.png - (71.69KB , 500x500 , 167.png )
535202

I wake up, eventually.

Iaxio’s ghost isn’t here right now, so I guess it’s asleep or back at his corpse or something. It feels like it’s really early morning.

I’m still supposed to hang out with McTrinkets today and get to know her better. But before any of that, I have to decide.

If I pay the prayerman to fight the dreambug, that’s almost all my money, and I have a week+ long trip coming up. House Doxedn is paying for the transport—well, Kehfn is, out of his own pockets—but anything I want to buy along the way, including food, I’d have to work out some solution for. If I don’t go with the prayerman, the 100+ points of currency I have right now is a lot of money. But I’ll have to find some other way to be free of the Geofahn bug.

It’s the time to decide.

Almost all my money for the prayerman dreambattle, or not?
>>
No. 535205 ID: c23ab0

Man, bugs are clingy. Oh, don't you dare get that prayerman to battle the dreambug. She said it could make her a complete invalid or kill her if she fails! And what do you think happens to the dream bug if she succeeds? I bet it's the same thing, except to him! That's why he can't mess with your dreams anymore is she's asking money to burn his brain to cinders.

At leeeeeeeast request clarification. You don't want to sink to Geofahn's level, no matter what they resort to, to apprehend you. Remember dreams are as important to these bugs as ghosts, so it's better you kill him than let some meddling man take away his dreams.
>>
No. 535206 ID: f6094d

...We should have asked Maexiks if two dreambugs could hold out one skilled one.
Good back-up plan at the least, if the prayerman duel doesn't work. But I think it will, seeing how it held out Maexiks until we let her in.
Now, I think we should have the Prayerman battle happen. BUT, we should ask Zoidbug if he can do anything to help, and to contact Maexiks so she can help.
Two dreambugs and a prayerman versus one skilled dreambug? If he wins he is an epic Dreambug Hero on the same scale as Scars of Yesterday.
>>
No. 535215 ID: 3e4b6e

Fight the dumb bug. It'll be entertaining.
>>
No. 535218 ID: 96c896

>>535202
I think almost-all your money is too much, here. How about instead you pay for 4-7 days worth of blocking him from entering (to give us a good head start), then after that's over just try to convince him to go away. You could also possibly let him in at some point before then to talk. Like tonight, before we leave.

He's already given up on convincing you to go back to Geofahn. All he's left with is tracking you through your dreams and keeping Maexiks out. Both of which won't grant him enough favor with Geofahn for them to betray their culture and grant him full membership of their family. He has already failed. Can't we convince him to at least let Maexiks have what he already has? His mantle is fully colored in his dreams. She has NONE, and will have none so long as he interferes.

Hey, maybe we should ask the prayerman priestess about how prayermen handle the family thing. Do they ever adopt other races? If we moved to a prayerman town, maybe Maexiks would feel more at ease there.
>>
No. 535219 ID: 2f4b71

>Almost all my money for the prayerman dreambattle, or not?
Not, unless you can make some travel-money while you're still here.
>>
No. 535221 ID: 41690e

...I'm thinking we might have better luck playing the social manipulation angle. We now know something about this bug. We saw just how desperately important belonging is to Maexiks. We see his colors in our dream. That gives us insight, and a card to play, if we play it right.
>>
No. 535223 ID: 57a559

Still have to return Meandrixix's cash, sorry, but no fight.
You've gotten this far with your friends, tongue and hands alone. You can get farther on them in this regard.
>>
No. 535224 ID: eaa372

The Prayerlady's assistance was appealing since we had no means to fight the Geofahn bug. We'll be able to save money by confronting the Geofahn ourselves now that we have an angle to attack him from.
>>
No. 535230 ID: 96c896

>>535223
I do not want to return the money. Nobody asked for it back, that implies we don't need to.
>>
No. 535251 ID: 94d65e

Iaxio was pretty good at gambling, right? Perhaps we could stack him and try to win some additional cash. Trade a few points of the local currency for something that will be more valuable where we're going and try to make it snowball.

Also ask around and see if anyone needs a courier for the route you're taking. Picking up a bit of cash on the side to deliver things isn't a bad idea.
>>
No. 535253 ID: 01531c

>>535230
>>535223
Meandraxix has not told the other dogs, either because she does not care, or she is so ashamed of her situation and mentioning the money would only make it worse.
>>
No. 535255 ID: cf49fc

Do the Ritual.
>>
No. 535288 ID: 9ddf68

the way I'm seeing this is do we want to get screwed over in the dream world or in the waking one. If we go with the prayerman option I have a good feeling it would work which would let us sleep in peace again but we would be kind screwed up the butt in the waking world since we have a week worth of traveling and unless we can find a way to make some cash we would be S.O.L. real quick. However if we keep our money we could easily make it to wherever we're going with some cash to spare given we don't spend it on useless things or get robbed or something but then we still have the bug chasing us every night and to get him to stop we would have to actually have to find him in our dreams to talk to him and even if we can pull that off we still have to try and convince him that hounding our butts isn't worth it.

Given the choices I say keep your money since we have little to no way of actually getting more of that (at least right now) and we still have a chance to talk the dreambug away, even if it's a small one it's still a lot cheaper.
>>
No. 535317 ID: 034b75

Don't give her all your money.
>>
No. 535412 ID: 33a4f2

Geofahn bug might be an ally in the longer run if you help him out. And FWIW, I'm feeling kinda sorry for the guy.
>>
No. 535423 ID: 5af25b

>>535202
an idea! it's still really early morning right? talk with the Geofahn bug now and see if you can convince him without spending the money
>>
No. 536092 ID: 8fb35b
File 137702933098.png - (94.62KB , 500x500 , 168.png )
536092

I decide it’s just way too much money, and even if it succeeds, like, I can do this. I can do this on my own. Without killing the Geofahn bug or something.

When I tell Iaxio he’s happy I’m not wasting my money on a clear scam.

I consider returning Meandraxix’s money, but no one told me, and she was opposing Hefehxn because she was a big name in shipping or something like that so I’m sure she’ll be fine.

When I tell Iaxio he’s happy I’m scamming her out of her money.

I make a note to see if there’s any money-making chances along the way and get myself ready to visit McTrinkets.

When I tell Iaxio he asks me if her and I are going to make out. I ignore him.

A small breakfast and wash later, Iaxio and I are at the Family Hefehxn manor. It’s. Super weird. Two days ago we were trying to kill each other and now we’re all friends? And McTrinkets is just hanging out with them.

A Hefehxn ghost lets me in and he’s really courteous and there’s no mention of the four dogs that are dead because of me. I only wait a few minutes before McTrinkets comes out.

She’s wearing full Hefehxn colors. Uhm. Okay.

Before we go out anywhere, while I’m still in the manor, I guess, if I want, I can ask if I can talk to the ghosts of the dogs I killed/helped kill. But from how it went in the nightmare, I don’t think I feel super guilty about it.
>>
No. 536096 ID: ca1c58

>>536092
Nah, don't talk to dead dogs. Today is for living dogs. Living dogs to go on dates without their relatives watching to see if they kiss, especially since they really want to kiss.

Ask her about the colors.
>>
No. 536100 ID: 32e092

MAKEOUTS.

oh uh what's up with the colors I guess
>>
No. 536104 ID: d2ad4a

Pure mantle.
So I suppose this is her 'home house' so to speak?
That makes things interesting!
Well, I suppose we could consider this being our premanent place of residence, or at least a possible place to return to and live if we end up destitute/ Sabby learns Geofahn is done chasing her.
>>
No. 536116 ID: 8fb35b
File 137703681219.png - (60.60KB , 500x500 , 169.png )
536116

I don’t want to overstay whatever welcome I have here, so McTrinkets and I head out the manor.

“So uh, you’re wearing their colors.”

“Well, that’s true. My old clothes needed a wash.”

“Were those other clothes your actual colors? Or was that just a disguise too?’

“Disguise! I have a few still stashed out in the coracle.”

“So Hefehxn just gave you some clothes to wear?”

“Oh, these are mine. I told you, Family Hefehxn and I didn’t always have it out for one another.”

“Are you… part of their family?”

“Oh no, not at all. Well!” she says. “A whole day to relax. Neither of us indebted to the other. How do you want to do?”

I’m not sure if I want to press her on just how she was involved with Hefehxn, or what kind of attitude I want to take with it. I’ll think about it for a moment. And anything else I want to talk to her about. This is the one day I have with McTrinkets without interruption, so it’s time to actually get to know her and decide what I think about her.

We talk about a few of the things that there are to do in this city for strangers who want to relax or have fun.

We’re apparently south enough there’s an actual theater around. Theater is kind of more popular in the south and it’s like, super “old fashion” tombdog that even grandma’s ghost makes fun of for being out of date. But I never actually saw it, so it could be neat to go and check out with McTrinkets.

There are always the public game tables. Gambling and other board games are the most common pastime in the entire remnant, so we can hang out and play games like that real casually.

McTrinkets mentions there’s a menagerie a family runs in the city, and the weird things they got there are worth gawking at sometimes.
>>
No. 536121 ID: ca1c58

Say "like this," and put your tongue in her mouth.

Don't press her about colors right this second.

Also best date spot is the zoo. Go to the zoo zoo is awesome go to the zoo.
>>
No. 536125 ID: 092337

No you fool don't go that fast! You might not even like her after today! Seconding not hassling about colours just yet, though.

We already did gaming some time ago, so let's go zoo for a break from the norm. Let us marvel at the weird and wonderful creatures of this land and others!
>>
No. 536127 ID: 26d11e

Don't be a perv. Go to the zoo or something.
>>
No. 536142 ID: 41690e

If she wanted to give you a strait answer about the colors, she would have already. Don't push it anymore.

Let's just go hang out or something.
>>
No. 536143 ID: d2ad4a

I'd rather see the theater-seems like that would be a more interesting time, though I guess with Sabby not liking stuffy tombdog culture (Or just getting the absolute worst treatment of it for her personality) she wouldn't care so much about it...
Ehh, who knows.
I wanna see the theater though!
>>
No. 536144 ID: 9ddf68

did you ask her if she has any ways of making money yet?

Sure lets gawk at the weird things for now, It's different and harder to track. But for future reference let's not always pick the oddest thing on our least of things to do because then it would become predictable in that we always chose the new thing. Of course if we can fix our bug problem then the hell with it, it don't matter anymore.
>>
No. 536148 ID: 96c896

>>536116
Ask how she made good with Hefexn, anyway. Did she stick up for them when they were confronted with the evidence?

Also, go see the play. You're gonna be living in the south, so it's probably best you get a sample of what to expect.
>>
No. 536153 ID: d3f29d

Yeah, just let the color thing drop. It's clearly not a big deal to her.

Go to the theater. If your family didn't care for it, that should be good enough for you.

Sit in the back. Hope the matinee is a romance.
>>
No. 536195 ID: bec0df

Don't bother asking about the colours. Its highly unlikely she would give you a straight answer anyway- she seems tricky like that.

Gambling sounds nice; Iaxio will be able to help us a bit there and maybe we can win some cash on the side. In life he was a good gambler so stacking him will improve our chances.

Perhaps the menagerie would be more interesting than the theater, since people find it boring they probably do so for a reason. With luck they might even have critters from other remnants.

Don't try to find the ghosts of the dogs you helped kill/killed. They probably think you're a butt for killing them already so there's no need to fart on them further.
>>
No. 536217 ID: 96c896

...hang on a second, she's wearing their colors, but she's not part of their family? Isn't that like... totally improper? I mean, at the very least, she must've been adopted into their family to be given permission to wear those colors. Unless she was given those colors so that wearing them would be a visual lie to those she deals with? Like, so that people would trust her more as a Hefehxn merchant? It does sound like the sort of shady thing Hefehxn would do, and it would be pretty smart for McTrinkets. That reminds me, see if you can get another name out of her, something we can use on a more permanent basis. After all, you'd like to send her letters in the future!
>>
No. 536299 ID: bec0df

>...hang on a second, she's wearing their colors, but she's not part of their family? Isn't that like... totally improper?

Mc Trinkets shifts name, house and appearance whenever she feels like it, so I guess changing her mantle wouldn't be too different. Posing as a full member of the house would throw a lot of confusion into the works if someone was asking after her.

Then again she is very casual about it, which is very contrary to Tombdog norms. Something tells me she isn't from around here.
>>
No. 536671 ID: d2ad4a

Maybe just goggle a bit of at the weirdness of those 4-legged tombdogs...Or maybe just dogs? Like, they come from the prayerman remmant, so maybe they don't have ghosts like tombdogs do?
>>
No. 536679 ID: bec0df

Ask her if she is involved in anything that would possibly get you into trouble for hanging out with her. Like the last time.

As for what you actually think of her... she is shady as hell but as long as that isn't directed at you negatively it could be benificial. She scratched your back, you scratched hers, the world turns and the balanceis restored.
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