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File 140643644785.png - (19.32KB , 1100x900 , 1.png )
586024 No. 586024 ID: 0eaf76

You awaken to find yourself in a dimly lit room. There are cracks in the wall and a foul stench hangs in the air. A door sits in the far corner and it appears to be heavy and made of wood. By your feet sits a plate of hardened bread, assumed to be stale. The only noise you can hear is the steady trickle of water flowing from a gash in the stone walls. Your lips are cracked, your mouth is dry and your head pounds with a dulling pain.

You can't seem to remember anything. Are you a girl? A boy? What is your name? Who are you?

>Enter name and gender.
Expand all images
No. 586025 ID: 6d3b18

Roza, f.
No. 586026 ID: 9ddf68

No. 586037 ID: 2fd516

Jet Hansen. Male.

Go collect some water from the wall by cupping your hands, and drink it.
No. 586049 ID: 0eaf76
File 140644299194.png - (21.46KB , 1100x900 , 2.png )

>Abel, Male

You sit in the same spot for a few moments, while the cobwebs inside of your head begin to clear away. Ah, yes. Your name is Abel. Abel...Hansen. That's right. You're a male. A healthy, adult male. The flood of information stops there. You can't seem to recall anything about where you come from or where you are now. The only thing you can think of at the moment is how thirsty you are.

>Drink water from wall.

Managing to shuffle your way to the crack in the wall, you cup your hands and shovel water into your mouth. The water is warm, and tastes like dirt, but it's still something. A heavy weight can be felt on your left ankle and when you look down you see that a rusty, metal shackle is tying you to the wall. The shackle chain is long enough for you to reach the water and the plate of food. Examining your clothes, it's apparent that what you have on can't be very exquisite. A simple shirt and cloth pants, with various tears and scratches in the fabric. Your feet are bare and dirty.
No. 586053 ID: db2a3f

Check to see if the doors locked.
Abel Hans. iswydt.
No. 586064 ID: 2fd516

Probably can't get to the door. If you're hungry, go ahead and eat, but otherwise it can wait.

See just how much of the room you can reach while shackled. Also, check your pockets if you have any.
No. 586069 ID: 0eaf76
File 140644640265.png - (34.59KB , 1100x900 , 3.png )

>Investigate length of shackle chain.

You're able to crawl a few inches past the watering hole in the wall, but it's not nearly long enough to reach the doorway. The plate of food is at the same distance as the water, just a bit off to the left. Your bindings give just enough freedom to reach necessities, but not enough to reach the exit.

>Check pockets.

Aha! Pants! You're wearing pants. Pants usually have pockets. You pat the sides of your legs. They do indeed have pockets, but the only thing inside of them are pieces of dust and lint. It's dreadfully lonely in this cell. You sit in the same spot for several minutes when suddenly you hear the rattling of metal chains, coming from the opening in your doorway. It sounds as though something is across the hallway? Or perhaps just outside the door? The rattling continues for a while before you hear a cracked voice.

"H-Hello? Where am I? What is this? Is anyone out there? Hello?!" The voice was distinctly female, but with a deep husk to it. It was obvious that the person speaking had a dry throat as well, as her voice sounded grainy and weak.
No. 586071 ID: 2fd516

Well answer her, tell her you're in the same boat, you can't remember anything either.
No. 586072 ID: 0eaf76
File 140644923672.png - (28.93KB , 1100x900 , 4.png )


You explain to her that you're in the same situation. There's a moment of silence before you hear a quiet sigh. "...I-If that's so...and if I can remember right..." The chains rattle. "We were most likely taken from our homes...to be turned into slaves..." You hear a loud pound, and a hissing noise. From the sounds of it you assume she punched the wall. "Wh-What district are you from...?" District? You think to yourself quietly...

>Choose an element: Fire, Water, Air, Earth
No. 586073 ID: dc4b80

Earth is a nice solid choice.
No. 586074 ID: 0bd34b

Always bet on Earth.
No. 586076 ID: 602ef7

Dirt Don't Hurt
No. 586097 ID: a36601

C'mon Firefox!
No. 586099 ID: e06dcb

Earth... just because...
No. 586105 ID: 9ddf68

Air just because I can
No. 586111 ID: 3e51ac

Air district.
"Do a barrel roll!"
No. 586121 ID: 6d3b18

No. 586139 ID: 6d5452

No. 586146 ID: 2f2fc2

heart =D
No. 586156 ID: e5e5e0

No. 586219 ID: 0eaf76


The Fiora District. A fierce place full of people who are headstrong and brave. They specialize in blacksmithing and weapon crafting, often noted as being the most aggressive fighters and courageous leaders, although they may tend to be a bit rash and hasty.

No. 586223 ID: 6d3b18

So... no fireballs? Aw.

Confirm anyways.
No. 586225 ID: 9ddf68

I only counted 3 fires out of
5 earths
2 airs
and zero waters.
No. 586243 ID: 0eaf76

Alternatively, you chose Earth.

The people of Terran are a hardworking and honest group of people. Working with the Earth, they harvest the ripest crops and the finest minerals. Strong and reliable, but perhaps not the most cunning or gentle.
No. 586286 ID: e6f437

No. 586411 ID: 0eaf76
File 140657020994.png - (28.02KB , 1100x900 , 5.png )


A name pops up in your head. T... T... Terran...? Is that your district? You reply to her voice, saying you are from Terran, the Earth District. Yes...you remember now. You worked with the Earth...worked alongside it. You are from the Earth. You hear her chains rattle a bit.

"Terran, huh? I'm from Coelum, the Air District. Guess these people aren't just sticking to one place. U-Um, do you know about what's been happening recently? About why we're sitting here in this dungeon? You seem pretty clueless...n-no offense or anything." You can hear her shift about in her cell.
No. 586413 ID: 2fd516

Try to remember. Think about the district, and your life. Try to remember progressively further in the future. If nothing comes up, ask her to explain.

Also try pulling at the chain in the wall if you feel your strength returning.
No. 586420 ID: 0eaf76
File 140657411046.png - (34.54KB , 1100x900 , 6.png )

>Try to remember.

You press your fingers against your temples, concentrating. In Terran...before you came here...what were you? You try to think back to when everything was normal but your memory only comes up as blank. You can recall some sort of conflict, a war perhaps. Things definitely weren't peaceful...what was it exactly, that happened? You ask her for help, unable to come up with any answers on your own.

"Well, there are 4 Districts, right? Fiora, Coelum, Terran and Aequis. But recently people have been disappearing. Something is taking people from their homes. But from what rumors I've been hearing? I hear that they aren't just taking random people. They're targetting specific people...but why?" The room went silent. You turn your head to the chains attached to the wall, and tug on it to test your energy. After a few test pulls, you grasp around the chain with both hands and strain to try and break the chain. It's covered in rust, so how strong can it be? You pull and pull, groaning out.

"D-Don't hurt yourself! The chains...they're too strong for you to break on your own...I've already tried breaking mine..." Before she can continue, heavy footsteps echo from the hallway. They start off quiet, then proceed to get louder and louder, until they stop at your doorway. Despite the barred opening in the door, you can't see anything outside, though you can swear something is out there. Cutting off your thoughts, a deep, threatening voice speaks to you.

"No talking allowed. Keep quiet." That's all the figure says before it walks past your door. A little ways down the hall, you are able to hear a different door open with a deafening creak to the hinges. Chains rattle and someone starts to scream. "No...d-don't touch me! DON'T TOUCH ME! LET ME GO! HELP! HELP!" Metal clinks together and the bloodcurdling screams continue. They seem to echo off of the walls, causing you to shiver. The being walks past your door again, carrying the screaming person along with them. The noise fades, ending with the slam of a final door. Dead silence. The girl across the hall flails about, her shackles making a loud cluttering noise. "O-Oh god...! Is he gonna come for us next...?! Just how many people are in here?! H-Hey! You! Whatever your name is, we NEED to get out of here somehow...a-and fast...!"
No. 586424 ID: 2fd516

But how? The chain won't budge. I guess we could try attacking the guard if he comes in here, and use his keys to uncuff ourselves...

What's the plate made out of? Could we smash it, use a shard as a weapon?
No. 586425 ID: 0bd34b

Eat your plate of food, and then get back to breaking the chain. Take off your shirt and use it to grip the chain so you it doesn't dig into your hands.
No. 586433 ID: e6e228

Earth...Crazy thought- is magic a thing? Use it to weaken the wall around the chain, it's made of stone, which comes from Earth...
No. 586438 ID: 9ddf68

what is your diner plate made of? If it's metal we might be able to use it to chip away at the wall where the chain is connected, at least enough for us to pull it out of the wall.
No. 586456 ID: 2f4b71

You may not be able to break the chain, but the rock, the earth, it's anchored to?

Try pulling on the chain. Not trying to yank out the anchor, just a gentle tension. Feel the stone releasing it, like pulling it from thick mud.
No. 586491 ID: 0eaf76
File 140660304915.png - (29.00KB , 1100x900 , 7.png )

>Eat food.

Maybe you can use the plate as some sort of way to break the chains? No need to waste the food though. You pick up a clump of bread and gnaw on it. It's way too hard to just eat casually. As you examine the metal plate, you continuously chew away at the loaf. Using your mouth to hold the bread, you hold out the chain and begin to hack away at the stone wall connected to your shackle. You manage to chip off tiny bits of stone, but it won't be able to set you free. Your heart begins to race when pounding footsteps begin to approach your cell. Panic sets in.

>Magic? Earth powers?

Wait. The walls are made of stone...and you're familiar with the Earth... is magic existent in this world? It doesn't seem familiar to you personally, but you remember the stories of powerful men who wield the ability to command the ground to their will. They're just legends though, right? Nothing but fairy tales? It's worth a shot, because frankly, it's your best bet right now.

You stare at the walls surrounding your anchor to the stone, concentrating. Slowly, you begin to put more tension on the chain, pulling it out with building force. You can feel a warm feeling set in your stomach, your fur stands on end. The footsteps stop at your door, and you hear a creaking noise as the figure begins to turn the door handle. The stones around your anchor burst forth, causing you to roll backwards from the force! Did you just do that?! You...you controlled the Earth...with your mind!

"HEY!" A towering bull-man stomps towards you, wielding a large hammer. "WHERE DO YOU THINK YOU'RE GOING?!" He runs at you! You must act fast!
No. 586492 ID: dc4b80

Bash him with the chunk of rock attached to your chain. If you swing it hard it will make a nasty weapon. A good shot will knock him out and a bad shot will at least get him tangled in chain.
No. 586494 ID: 53ba34

swing rock and chain like a mace!
No. 586509 ID: 9ddf68

fuck it you got a makeshift flail, club that fucker. Also there is a good bit of length in that chain so if you can't knock him out you might be able to strangle him... keyword being might.
No. 586510 ID: 707a11

Put some chi into the blow, too.
No. 586512 ID: ef7fd2

Favicon is up over in http://tgchan.org/kusaba/questdis/res/66907.html, go approve or disapprove. This is pretty good so far, I'm hooked yo
No. 586514 ID: 2fd516

No time to fuck around with magic powers, you don't really know how to use them. Better chain the fuck out of the guard. See if you can kick and get that chain wrapped around his legs to trip him up or around his neck to snap it.

Well, MAYBE you can use earth magic against the guard, by focusing on the earth beneath his feet.
No. 586518 ID: 948372

Swing chain at feet, grab and make em trip. While they're tripped, run out and lock the cell!
Take that, hoser!
No. 586519 ID: d7800e

You might be able to use the plate as a shield, along with the rock flail
No. 586564 ID: 0eaf76
File 140661812186.png - (43.33KB , 1100x900 , 8.png )

>Use as a mace!

Scrambling to your feet, you pick up the chain around your leg and aim for the guard. "YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO BE OUT OF YOUR CELL!" Readying your leg, you throw out a strong kick in his direction and the rock-anchored shackle catapults to him, encircling the bull-man's leg and causing him to trip, falling flat on his backside. "OOF! ARGHH..." He lays there, sputtering and groaning, trying to recover.

>Trap him in cell.

You must act quick! On the guard's belt, you spot a ring of keys. You snatch it up and quickly dash out of the cell, shutting the door behind you. You try shoving random keys into the doorway, hoping to lock him up. After a few moments you're finally able to twist a key in the door, locking it shut. The guard begins to pound on the other end, shouting. "TO HELL WITH YOU, WHO THE HELL PUT A TERRANIAN INSIDE OF A STONE CELL?!" You now stand in the middle of a large hallway, lined with prison cells similar to yours. From the door directly behind you, the female voice from before calls out. "Did you actually get out? W-Wow..."
No. 586567 ID: 9ddf68

well if that guy keeps making a racket he's bound to bring his friends down her to see what's up. So I say release every prisoner you can find down her and see if you can't mob your way out... at the very least it will give you some meat shields if these guys can still overpower your group.
No. 586569 ID: 07463b

Let's bust the lady out, because having a friend is going to make the next 24 hours MUCH easier to survive.

After that, there are two reasonable plans.
You can try to sneak out, or your can stir up a riot and break out. Given the noise the guard is making, plus the good chance that another guard will spot him, I think the best plan is to break out.
Open all the cells.
No. 586585 ID: 321d85

Yeah, probably plan Prison Riot. Also, as you're letting people out, explain that the reason you were able to break out was that you, on a whim, tried thinking at the rock in an attempt to use magic. Apparently you can. Furthermore, it's possible that that's the common factor here - perhaps all the prisoners here can use magic. They should all give it a shot, presumably with their respective elements - a mob wielding even rudimentary, untrained magic is probably several times more effective than a mob without. Also, because MAGIC.
No. 586616 ID: 0eaf76
File 140664613674.png - (40.50KB , 1100x900 , 9.png )

>Prison Riot.

If you're able to garner the remaining prisoners, perhaps there might be a way to escape this whole place entirely, through a prison riot! Quickly, you whip around and go through the keys to unlock the girl from before, all the while ignoring the guard's screaming. Pushing open the door, you peek inside to find a bat girl sitting in the corner of the room, arms cuffed together and wings chained shut. "O-Oh! You have the keys?" The Air District girl clambered to her feet, her face showing the faintest hint of a smile. "We should release anyone we find in here. But you should know, I'm not sure if all of these cells have a prisoner. I think they've been taking people away these last few days...and don't you think someone should of spoken up by now? That's just my thought..." The girl held out her arms, awaiting to be unchained.

"Thank you...by the way...can I please know your name?"
No. 586624 ID: dd751c

Jurgen? Jeerga? Jakobs? Something with a J, you don't quite remember.
No. 586626 ID: f839a9

>can I please know your name?
I... don't know. Maybe they did something to me, or I got hit in the head, but there seem to be a lot of blanks in my memory.

>awaiting to be unchained
See about finding a key that fits her chains. And maybe yours too, no need to drag that rock everywhere. It'll slow you down.
No. 586629 ID: 0eaf76


"The name's Abel, Abel Hansen."

Unlock her and see if you can get those chains off her wings.
No. 586633 ID: 2fd516

We already decided on Abel Hansen.

Quickly unlock her, and tell her that you were able to escape because you can control Earth to an extent. She should be able to control air, considering what the guard just said.
No. 586648 ID: 53ba34

ask if those wings are just for show or if she could fly us over the wall if we get outside.
No. 586653 ID: 9ddf68

might as well see if they're any others in the other cells but yeah if we don't find anyone lets see to getting out of this place... and uncuff her you fool what are you waiting for.
No. 586655 ID: 7e4b54

Pedoseion. :3
No. 586731 ID: 07463b

"Abel Hansen. And you?"

However, if she's right about there not being many prisoners, then the riot plan will need some modification.
As a precaution, it might be a good idea to somehow gag the guard - that may reduce the number of guards you'll encounter on the way out.
If you could spring another prisoner or two, you could overwhelm him and tie him up with a chain and padlock. A shirt might work as a gag.

After that, spring everyone else and grab whatever weapons you can. If you don't have overwhelming numbers on your side you are going to need to move a lot faster to get out.
No. 586740 ID: 0eaf76
File 140668671290.png - (42.19KB , 1100x900 , 10.png )

>Unlock chains.

Before any formalities, you hurriedly locate the keys to get her cuffs and wing shackles off. She rubs at her wrists, nodding. You then introduce yourself as Abel Hansen. "I'm Becca, Becca Albrin." As you kneel down to remove the makeshift mace off of your leg, you explain how you have...Earth powers. The powers to control Earth. She narrows her eyes. "That's silly. Magic like that only exists in fantasies. I mean...sure, there have been RUMORS that people are able to do that but I've never seen it in person!" You interrupt her, suggesting that she too may have powers to control air. "Wh-What..? Now wait--" "No time to explain, we need to get other prisoners out." You snap. Becca slinks back a bit, pouting.

>Find other prisoners.

You rush down the hall, unlocking all the cells you can. It appears as though this is just a section, though. There aren't very many cells in here...but there are probably other hallways. In the end you manage to find 3 others, all with respective chains to hold them down. You pass around the ring of keys in order to set them all free. Turning to Becca, you ask if those wings of hers actually work. She seems a bit offended. "Of course they work! What do you think, they're just for show?!"
No. 586741 ID: 0eaf76
File 140668672089.png - (51.85KB , 1100x900 , 11.png )

Your conversation is cut off by the larger door at the end of the hall being swung open, with a handful of guards spilling forth. A young man follows in behind them, with a devious smirk. "So you thought you could escape? This place is way too large for you to find your way out, Mr. Hansen~" He lets out a dry laugh, crossing his arms. "Now can you kindly go back in your cell...? I'd hate for you to get hurt, my boss wouldn't like that very much."
No. 586744 ID: 9ddf68

we still got rock flail... also is there a back door or not that you can see?

Either way it looks like five on five as I see two more guards behind smug prick there soooo. Also ifwhen a fight breaks out remember you have powers.
No. 586748 ID: 24dc7a

Ask about how he is out to pick a fight with magic people for some employer. That should have to be some pretty good wages. (Hover some rocks for effect. Even if he doesn't give away anything useful I don't think he can really deny the magic part after the "Terram in a stone cell" bit, and the most important thing right now is to let the others know they can magic before the fight starts.)
No. 586750 ID: 2fd516

Ask why you were taken. What is this all about? What has he done with the prisoners that were taken from their cells?

I feel as though collapsing the ceiling on them would be our best bet. Block off that entrance or outright trap them all in rubble, then we could try busting through a wall somewhere in a different direction to escape.
No. 586765 ID: ef7fd2

All we've really done so far is pull a chain out of a wall, unless there's a weakness we can exploit there is no guarantee we have access to that kind of power just yet.
No. 586767 ID: 07463b

Damn, this looks bad. So much for surprise and a quick break-out.

However, they DID stick you in a stone cell, so maybe they don't know about your magic? Either way, trying to collapse the doorway (if you can) sounds like the best plan. Those guards look WAY too tough for five on four, but if you can block off the door then you might win at five on two.
Of course, this will make escape much harder in the long run, but that's the price for surviving the short term.

A few observations:

The guards aren't armed, so they probably weren't expecting a real fight.

The guy with the smirk looks like he thinks he's a supervillain with all the cards. That implies that he is NOT a supervillain with all the cards, and is probably just a low-level patsy with an ego.

The claim "This place is way too large for you to find your way out" is a pretty strange boast. It's also at odds with how fast these guys just turned up, unless they are just in charge of this particular area.
No. 586803 ID: f839a9

>Mr. Hansen~
Means you actually remembered your name instead of just making one up, or he had some means to overhear your conversation.
No. 586807 ID: 40935b

Most of your opponents have their necks, gut and groins unprotected, in addition to convenient grappling points on their heads. You still have a chain, which you can either swing and/or wrap around your fist.

If you can, slip the keys to Becca without the other guy noticing. Something tells me they won't be putting you back in your old cell.
No. 586836 ID: 2f4b71

Try and creep the stone under their feet up and over their shoes. Hopefully they won't notice until they try and actually move, and you should be able to shove past them.
No. 586839 ID: 0eaf76
File 140671090402.png - (47.92KB , 1100x900 , 12.png )

>Slip the keys to Becca.

You slowly inch over towards the bat girl and slide the ring of keys into her hand. She glances at you briefly before turning back to the group of people blocking your path.

>Ask why you were taken. What is this all about? What has he done with the prisoners that were taken from their cells?

The rat man holds up his hands, chuckling. "No need to be so hasty...we're not going to hurt you if you cooperate." The guards seem to ease up their tense stances, nodding to the rodent promptly. "Are you all familiar with a certain race of people called Elymems? I would like to guess that you aren't. Surprisingly for you, you are all Elymems yourself. Someone with the power to control their respectful element, which is determined by your District of course." Becca narrows her eyes, her body seizing up a bit. "Very few people actually KNOW about these gems, of course and WE are some of those people. So our plan is very simple. Gather up all the little Elymems and bend them to our will. Breaking their minds is the easy part~ Finding them? Not so easy." The man placed his hands on his hips, clicking his tongue.

"So why don't you make our job easier and come with us?" His smile was twisted, soaked in bad intentions.

>Talk it out.

>Fight it out.
No. 586840 ID: 2fd516

Yeah we're gonna be fighting these guys.

See if you can take them by surprise with your stone control powers. Like, start focusing on the ceiling to try to collapse it while keeping them talking. Like you know, "What's in it for me?"
No. 586841 ID: 9ddf68

I really want you to take your rock flail and just whip the damn rock at that guy's head, even if we can't retrieve the flail with earth magic it would still be worth it just to wipe the smile off his face.

As for something intelligent to do, see if you can't move the rock part of your rock flail and just the earth around you in general since it could very much help in the upcoming fight to know weather or not you can us your powers at will or if you're going to be more or less just swinging a rock around because you did just stumble across the stuff so I have no idea how much control you have.

As for talking to buy time ask what they want with you guys then, some new world order scheme or trying to sell them off as super solders for crazy prices to other rich assholes?
No. 586852 ID: 705162

Keep talking while feeling with your mind to try and find out how much stone control you can manage in the inevitable fight.
Not even his own guards seem to like that guy. Ask the guards what their deal is; do they just mess with the heads of magic users for a day job and think it won't go wrong sooner or later?
No. 586855 ID: 40935b

Keep him talking. 'We're not going to hurt you if you cooperate', followed by a nod from the guards does not bode well. Focus on collapsing the door jamb, see if you can cut these three off from the others.
No. 586856 ID: c02e1e

The casual way he refers to dragging people off and "breaking there minds" worries me. He basically just said hurry up and surrender so we can get on with the torture.

So if you did not have enough motivation to crush them all with rocks that might help.
No. 586858 ID: f839a9

Well, we got one useful thing out of that exchange. Confirmation we're supposed to have powers. If we're lucky, that might inspire some of our fellow prisoners to actually try using them, in the case of a fight.

Still, while a desperate and afraid group might be able to throw power around, you're unpracticed, and it's unreliable. No sure thing you can win before the guards physically beat you down.

...really, the focus right now should be building up the others. If you fight alone you're probably losing.
No. 586905 ID: 0eaf76
File 140674581812.png - (46.53KB , 1100x900 , 13.png )

>Keep talking, keep them busy.

>What are you planning on doing?

He snorted, waving a hand. "Do you really think you can just squeeze all this information out of me right now? Can't ruin the surprises, can I?"

>Ask what the guards' jobs are.

The guard on the right spoke up first, his posture immediately straightening up. "What I do is determined by my superior." He says aloud, but in a sort of tone that implies he really isn't fully invested.

While they talk away, you stare at the ceiling above them, trying to cause it to fall on them. Nothing seems to happen. You clench your jaw, concentrating to release the Earth above their heads but to no avail. Suddenly, the quiet rabbit girl behind you steps forward, visibly shivering. "I...I'm s-sorry b-but we have to get through...!" She runs at a guard, fire exploding from her hands as she begins to punch him down, charring his skin and armor. The rodent man grunts. "GAH! I guess I'll have to hurt you then!" He grabs at her hair, yanking her to the floor. She lets out a yelp, the fire instantly dissipating from her palms. "R-RUN! GET AWAY!" She screams. You act quickly, turning on your heel to run backwards.
No. 586906 ID: 0eaf76
File 140674582908.png - (24.05KB , 1100x900 , 14.png )

>is there a back door or not that you can see?

You're not sure if there even IS an alternative exit, but you're running on hope. As you, Becca and the two other Elymems race through the halls, you see a door similar to the one in the front, hopefully unlocked. Pushing against the handle, the door swings open as you hear the sounds of pounding footsteps following close behind you, with an echoing voice, "CATCH THEM! Don't let them escape!" Outside of the prison ward, your group is chased out into a much wider corridor, made up of heavy stone. A fork in the path causes you to stop momentarily.

>Go left.

>Go right.
No. 586917 ID: 9ddf68

uh... left?
No. 586918 ID: 2fd516

Go left!

Hmm, maybe if you focus on that feeling you had before when the stone cracked, you could do something. Or maybe you can only control earth at a limited range? Run your hand along the wall to see if you can affect it.
No. 586921 ID: 2f2fc2


do we have any notion that one way is better than the other?
No. 586941 ID: c9d5f3

On the right, you spot a surprisingly clean looking wooden door a few yards down, on your left you see a long, extensive hall dotted with rusty steel doors that lead to God knows where... Becca leaned closer to you, shaking your shoulder. "Hurry up, Abel!"
No. 586943 ID: 24dc7a

Try the wooden door. The metal door corridor sounds like more cells.
No. 586948 ID: 07463b

>"CATCH THEM! Don't let them escape!"
Wait? What!?

I'd called this guy a "wannabe supervillain" before, but that's just ridiculous.
I'd just assumed that he'd taken the time to surround us, given he knows the place and had all the time in the world to show up. But if he's panicking now, then that's a very good sign.

I doubt the exit to the prison is a clean-looking wooden door, and the corridor we just came out of obviously had exits at both ends, so this one probably does too.
I hope.
No. 586951 ID: 0eaf76
File 140676701390.png - (31.27KB , 1100x900 , 15.png )

The wooden door on the right seems much safer than the dark row of steel doors on the left. But before you take off, a thought pops into your head.

>Run your hand along the wall to see if you can affect it.

Could perhaps making more direct contact with the Earth affect your powers at all? Hastily, you drag your fingertips along the cold, stone walls. You can feel the Earth shaking at your touch, and suddenly a pillar of rock bursts forth, blocking the path of the incoming guards. The other Elymems gasp out, shocked by the display of magic. You're stunned for a few moments, and then you dash off to the right.

Becca runs ahead and pulls open the wooden door, allowing everyone to file in before closing it behind her. Past the door, you find yourself in a more lavish hallway. It's decorated with various marble busts on pedestals and velvet rugs, yet it still holds a fairly dark appeal to it. Looming paintings were hung on the walls, and glass chandeliers teetered on the ceiling. The walls were also made of stone. It was fairly long, connecting to a different area on the other end. The bat girl finds the nearest door along the walls and quickly opens it up. "Hurry! Before the guards come in!" You all rush inside, and she quietly slides the door shut. Several moments later you hear the guards outside, storming past. "Where are they? Did you see where they went?" Their voices faded off as they hurry in the other direction. You, Becca and the two other escapees let out a sigh of relief. Where were you now?
No. 586952 ID: 0eaf76
File 140676702077.png - (38.12KB , 1100x900 , 16.png )

You appeared to be on some sort of balcony, overlooking an expansive area. In the middle sat a huge mechanism that looked like it could hold down a large monster. There were chains and wooden restraints, with various tools lined up along the walls. You hear voices coming from one of the entryways down below.

>Go back out into the hallway.

>Duck down and listen.
No. 586953 ID: c02e1e

Listen in for a moment but watch behind you to avoid getting ambushed.

This seems to be a massive complex so we need more info about where you are.
No. 586954 ID: 24dc7a

This looks like one of their 'processing' rooms. Stay and listen, we might learn something important or be able to save a prisoner if they have one.

> a pillar of rock bursts forth
Think you could do that into a guard next time you fight them?
Also, when you get a chance (not now, since you are hiding from the approaching people), see if your feet can count as touching the ground for earth magic purposes.
No. 586955 ID: cc08c7

Listen, but be ready for any attacks from behind.
No. 586956 ID: 07463b

>"Breaking their minds is the easy part"
Yeah, I think this is the happy joy fun room.

The best next move is going to depend on what the guards are up to. If they are still hunting for us, then staying here is a bad idea.
If they are taking fire-girl away, then those whispers could be important.

Honestly, you know so little about what's going on that I think listening to the whispers is probably best, even if it is risky.
Have someone listen at the the door though, in case the guards turn around. Then at least you'll have some warning.
No. 586958 ID: 9ddf68

>Duck down and listen.

no such thing as to much info, especially when you have next to none.
No. 586959 ID: 40935b

Listen for a bit. If this is the torture room it looks like it is, we might need to be big damn heroes and bail out that rabbit.
No. 586977 ID: 2fd516

In a pinch, you might be able to make some stairs or something with earth manipulation. Listen for now, to see if you need to.
No. 587043 ID: f839a9

Well, damn. That sucks.

So bunny girl could make fire, but at close range? And you need contact to work with earth, it seems.

Hardly conclusive evidence, but there seems to be rules with regards to range and materials.

>Duck down and listen
Alternative: could we use an air elementalist to listen? Carry their words to use? Sound is vibration, carried in the air. Might be something they'd be sensitive to.

Also: it occurs to me air might be our best way to find a way out. If it's possible to tell where the air flows, or sense the currents, or where fresh air comes from... could lead to an exit.
No. 587071 ID: f461c5

If we get the chance, we need to rescue the fire girl again. Ultimately, it seems anyone we let them have may become an enemy later. Besides morality, of course.
No. 587076 ID: 0eaf76
File 140678851506.png - (47.13KB , 1100x900 , 17.png )

>Stay and listen.

You duck down just a little bit and stay to listen. Becca presses near the door, listening in case anyone decides to barge in. A group of people walk out into the room, but they don't appear to have any prisoners with them... One was a cloaked man, the other a stern looking bird-woman and the last was the rat man from before. The other two were staring at the rat, shaking their heads.

"How could you let them escape, Spit? Those are precious Elymems, we NEED to keep them undercheck...was it your bright idea to keep a Terran inside of that place?!" The woman hissed. "We have a separate chamber for those Earth people, you know... one where they CAN'T break out, you know?" The rat, named Spit, hunched over a bit and flinched.

"Ack, sh-shut up, Aarin. Weren't you supposed to find the halfling?! Where's she?!" Aarin, the woman, laughed into her palm.

"The halfling? She's already locked up~ I actually do my job correctly. Your ONLY duty was to keep track of the prisoners and you couldn't even do that!"

The cloaked man put up his hands. "Stop bickering. You're giving me a headache." His voice was loud and demanding, it sent shivers down your spine. "Aarin, if you have the halfling bring her here. In the meantime we need to recruit some more Elymems. Spit, bring the Fiora girl." The rat saluted and skittered off.
No. 587077 ID: 0eaf76
File 140678853481.png - (46.16KB , 1100x900 , 18.png )

You stay hidden for a few minutes and before too long Spit returns, tugging the rabbit girl along in a chain leash. "Come on, girly~ Welcome to the Order~" He threw her down on the ground beside the cloaked man. He stared down at her with unforgiving eyes. Walking over to the rack of tools he grabbed a large stick with a strange crystal attached to the end. The girl squirmed in her restraints, whimpering.

"P-Please...I don't want to die..." Aarin giggled. "Die? Oh no, no, no. You're way too precious for that." Before anyone could react the man shoved the crystal at her chest, pressing her into the ground. He began chanting a few things and the crystal glowed with a white shine. You are forced to shield your eyes from the blinding light, in order to protect your vision. Before too long the light had dimmed, and the girl was sitting upright, staring off into space. She was no longer shaken up and looked completely unphased.

"Rise!" Aarin commanded. The girl stood to her feet. "Good, good." The bird woman turned to the other two. "Thank you, Orpheus." Referring to the man in cloaks. "Weak spirited ones like her are the easiest to lightwash. Now come on, girly." Aarin tapped her foot twice, and headed down the entryway with the Fiora girl following without hesitation.
No. 587085 ID: 2fd516

WELL THAT'S BAD. Hmm. We can't do anything about the rabbit now. What's this about a halfling though, I wonder?

Oh well. We have to keep moving. Go back into the hallway and check the other cells.
No. 587105 ID: 2f4b71

>Walking over to the rack of tools he grabbed a large stick with a strange crystal attached to the end.
They just leave it lying around? We want to grab that staff as soon as possible. Breaking it may be bad if the effect can be reversed, but we at least want to hide it.
No. 587113 ID: cfe8e5

Okay, yeah, we need to rescue her. If not out of common decency than at least because it'd mean one less magic user on their side. Getting your hands on that staff and giving them a taste of their own medicine would help.
No. 587115 ID: 10f4d1

>sorcerer guy uses magic crystal to mind control
>we can influence the earth
Try this if we can: shatter the crystal from long range.
Otherwise, drop down a sizable piece of ceiling on the crystal, that'll do.
No. 587118 ID: f461c5

Arent we above them? Why not just jump and fall on them holding a sizeable chunk of wall? Like, I mean ne large enough to turn the wizard douche into preserves. If you figure you van handle it, try spreading the stone as you fall to strike more than one target.
No. 587119 ID: 07463b

Saving her is now well outside what we are capable of. Time to bail out of here.
At least we know what we are up against. That information will matter later on.

Head for the door, and go straight down that corridor. The guards may well be around here somewhere, but surprise and magic should be enough. There is nothing you cam do for now but get out.

We don't know how valuable that staff is, and we don't have any reason to think that breaking it will help.
If we came down here to fuck shit up then it would make a good target, but it's not worth risking lives over.

That would alert them that we are here.
Give the guards haven't checked this room, they don't seem to be be looking for us right now.

Do we have any rood reason to think that's a fight we can win?
No. 587126 ID: 24dc7a

>Do we have any rood reason to think that's a fight we can win?
The element of surprise, a terrain barrier to melee counterattacks, and half a ton of stone? I don't think we can reach the ceiling, but if we can take out that robed guy with an opening volley of bricks from the wall I think we can beat the remaining two.
No. 587169 ID: 0eaf76
File 140683073323.png - (44.15KB , 1100x900 , 19.png )

Spit and Orpheus were lingering around after Aarin had departed. You stare down at them, hesitant. Should you attack them or leave quietly? You clench your fists and grab the balcony wall but you're stopped by a hand gripping your shoulder. It was Becca. Staring at her, she shakes her head at you.

Orpheus stares at the smaller rodent, sighing. "Go find the escapees. Lock them up in a more secure area, please? I'll be bringing the halfling here for her initiation... she'll be a much harder one to crack. Now get a move on." Spit nodded and scuttled off into a different direction, Orpheus leaving as well. After you're sure they're both gone, Becca lets out a sigh.

"You were going to go down there, weren't you?" You nod slowly. "That would be dangerous, at best. You don't know what kind of tricks they have up their sleeves! Besides, I doubt you're able to control your powers any more than we can." She rubbed the side of her neck. "Listen, you can't expect us to be able to back you up at all...I have no idea how to even start to use my powers, if I even have any...!" She kept her voice underneath a whisper.

The lizard boy spoke up softly. "Hey, I don't wanna stir up any trouble here, ok? I just want to get out..." The other male nodded in agreement. Becca cracked open the door behind you, waving a hand. "We need to find the exit. There must be one somewhere...!" With as much stealth as possible, you slide back out into the decorated hallway. Looking around, you don't spot any guards or people that pose any sort of threat.

"Hey, if you can control Earth or whatever, can't you just bust open a wall so we can climb out? We don't necessarily need to FIND an exit if you can just make one...!" Becca suggested.

>Find an exit.

>Make an exit.

>Stay around.
No. 587174 ID: 2fd516

>Make an exit.

I feel as though we should try to rescue the halfling as well. Let's experiment a bit with our powers after making the exit. Stomp on the floor and see if you can make a shockwave through the stone floor to attack from a bit of a distance. Touch the floor and see if you can throw up spikes in an area. See if you can collect stone on your arms and still control it. Maybe even fire off bits of it as a ranged weapon.
No. 587175 ID: 40935b

We could be too deep underground to tunnel through on our own, and it'd be too noticeable to start here. Keep looking, either for an isolated room or an exit, or that halfling they were talking about.

If nobody wants to be heroes, we'll just have to contact authorities.
No. 587177 ID: 705162

Did they leave that crystal staff in the room where it was before? If nothing else we should take that with us, do deprive the Order of it and maybe eventually figure out how to reverse its effects.
I am in favor of trying to rescue the halfling; she sounds important and has not yet been brainwashed. I think we have a little time now to experiment with powers before they get back. Maybe we can form stone into useable weapons?
No. 587178 ID: 9ddf68

I say burn this place to the ground and then make an exit.

But yeah I think making an exit will just attract unwanted attention so I say we leave that for plan B and just try to find an exit... or at least a window and work from there.
No. 587180 ID: 0eaf76
File 140683382209.png - (35.06KB , 1100x900 , 20.png )

>Stay around.

If your inability to use your powers was such an issue, it demands to be solved! You decide to try and find an isolated area in order to learn more about what kind of abilities you may have. Turning to Becca you explain this plan. She stays silent for a while before shrugging. "I suppose. If we actually do have magical powers then it would be wise to try and figure out how to use them. But how will we find an enclosed area? It feels like everything's connected here, like it's all one big maze."

The lizard boy speaks up once again. "E-Excuse me. But I think finding a quiet cell back in the prison ward would be good...? If we all stay quiet then maybe they won't notice us. Why would they look in there anyways? That's probably the least probable spot they expect to find us at...it'll at least give us a bit of time..." He looked around sheepishly, before taking a few steps back. "O-Or it's up to you, I'm not really one to make huge decisions, heh."

>Find a different spot.

>Go back to prison ward.
No. 587190 ID: 2fd516

Interesting idea. If we go back there we might even be able to intercept the person getting the halfling.
No. 587193 ID: 40935b

That guy is still locked in the cell, remember? We should try to stay away from him.
No. 587195 ID: 9ddf68

well if you can find an empty ward go for it. also if you guys see something that looks important feel free to test your powers on that as well, cause I'm not above petty vandalism when it comes to these guys.
No. 587200 ID: 705162

Sounds like a good idea to me. We have the keys to the doors in that ward, and while the guard is probably gone if he isn't we might be able to get some information out of him. Also while backtracking past the lightwashing room we might get a chance for Becca to fly down and steal that crystal.
No. 587255 ID: 07463b

Heading back to a cell sounds like a pretty good idea.

I'm still torn about how much we should try to be heroes though. It seems awful to abandon fire-girl and the halfling, but the guards are damn tough and if we get caught then no-one will be coming to help them.
If we escape then we are pretty much giving up on them, but it gives us a much better chance to actually shut this place down.
No. 587265 ID: 0eaf76
File 140686108275.png - (35.68KB , 1100x900 , 21.png )

>Prison Ward.

You lead the group backwards, towards where you first woke up. What a good idea! They would never think to check back in the prison cells... and on the way, perhaps you can snatch up the crystal scepter as well. You suggest the idea to Becca, since she's the only one who can fly as of now. She squinted at you, rolling her eyes. "I'm not risking my life for some weird crystal thing...even if it's important I don't wanna go down there alone!" The girl grips onto your arm, wings tucking in close. "L-Let's just go back...I don't like being out here in the open."

It took only a few minutes for you to traverse back to the holding area. You quickly check your old cell to see if the guard is still contained inside...which he isn't. Seems like the guards had the sense to unlock their friend. "Ok, quickly in here." Becca herded the group inside of an empty cell, closing the door behind them. "These doors aren't necessarily soundproof so we have to whisper, ok?" The others quickly nodded. "Alright, introductions are kind of important...I'm Becca, and this is Abel." She motioned at you.

The lizard boy raised his hand. "My name's Erwin..." The porcupine waved. "Walt."

Becca rubbed her hands together eagerly. "Um, Abel, since you seem to know how to use your powers the best...how bout' you try some stuff out?" You stare at them for a moment before you draw in a breath.

>Stomp on the floor and see if you can make a shockwave.

Lifting your leg, you stomp down on the ground with a bit of force. Nothing seemed to happen. You stomp once more. Still, nothing.

>Touch the floor and see if you can throw up spikes in an area.

You kneel down on the ground and place your palms against the ground. Immediately, you can feel the pulsations in the Earth. Closing your eyes, the strength of the stones revitalize your mind. You picture jagged spikes in your head, and from the walls, chunks of rock break off, carved into cone-shaped daggers by some unseen force. Becca and the others let out a quiet gasp. "W-Wow..." Erwin sputtered.

>Try out something else.

>Allow someone else to test their powers.
No. 587271 ID: 24dc7a

Keep the stone daggers as makeshift weapons.
Try and give instructions to see if you can get anyone else started on their powers, as we could then have multiple people practicing at once.
No. 587272 ID: 07463b

Let's see what the others can do.
Even the most basic grasp of who can do what is going to be really helpful.
No. 587273 ID: 9ddf68

seems to only work when you use your hands... at least for now anyways. I say try to get the others to use there powers, I mean you're all down here together might as well learn to fight together.
No. 587281 ID: 2fd516

So we can shape stone... make some weapons for everyone! Clubs or swords or daggers.

See if you can just feel what the shape of the stone is. How far away can you sense stone?

After those two things, encourage the others to try to get a handle on what they can do. We have access to water here, and of course air is everywhere.
No. 587300 ID: 761017

See deep within.
Feel deep without.
Percieve the truth of the Earth.
Know that Earth is more than rocky.
Know that Earth is more than strong.
Know that Earth is Earth. Earth is it's own indepedant element

Earth is hot, Earth is cool.
earth under pressure, earth on the surface
Earth is sharp, Earth is soft. jagged rocks, loamy soil
Earth is rich, Earth is rare. nutritional minerals, rare earth minerals
Earth is still, Earth is quick.
solid bedrock, shifting fault lines
Earth is brittle, Earth is hard.
sedimentary rock, igneous rock
Earth is small, Earth is large. a pebble, a mountain
Earth is timeless, Earth is changing.
mountain ranges, subduction zones
Earth Is Earth. Earth can take on countless forms and functions

Earth will flow, Earth will halt. sand under low pressure and high pressure
Earth will brace, Earth will crush.
pillars holding up and falling down
Earth will melt, Earth will freeze.
rock will liquify and crystallize under high heat and high pressure
Earth will burn, Earth will smother. a pile of coal may smother a fire or feed a fire.
Earth will snap, Earth will join.
crystals and metals can break and merge seamlessly.
Earth Is Earth. Earth can do many things and behave in countless ways

Earth is the foundry of air and sea.
earth produced and maintains the atmosphere and ocean
Earth is the forge of life and fire.
earth provides the environment needed for organic life and combustion
Earth Is EARTH. The element of Earth encompasses the entirety of the planet from crust to core

You are the Earth's. From birth you were doomed to be an Elemem of Earth.
The Earth is Yours. From birth you were granted authority over the Earth.

As soon as you understand this, begin forcing a cylinder of the floor to disintegrate and flow, and force the surrouning floor to press into it; this will generate enough friction-heat to melt the rock and allow you to shape weapons and armor out of it.
No. 587316 ID: 0eaf76
File 140687421041.png - (55.56KB , 1100x900 , 22.png )


What is Earth? You ponder to yourself. Earth is many things...but it'll take a bit before you fully understand the power of this element. When you do, you will surely be a force to be reckoned with.

>Help the others.

You talk to the other prisoners, explaining a few tips and tricks in controlling their element. Telling them to "feel" and "sense" around them. Becca stepped forward first, drawing in a gulp of air. "It's worth a shot, I guess." While she concentrates on sensing the air around her, you work on trying to carve weapons out of the stone. While the stone spear floats in the air, you brush your hands around it, trying to carve some sort of sword. Bits of the stone chip off, falling to the floor to form a decent looking weapon. You grasp it in your hands, smiling.

Becca spread out her wings and held her breath. "Feel the air...feel the air..." You notice a shift in the air flow of the cell. A weak current swirls around, causing your clothes and fur to waver. "Feel the air..." She closed her eyes and bit down on her bottom lip. The current got stronger still, flowing in a spiral formation. "I...I can feel the air!" She opened up her eyes, but as soon as she did, the gusts of wind died down till it was barely a breeze. "Or...at least I felt it..."
No. 587317 ID: 2fd516

Perhaps she can think of it as similar to catching the wind with her wings.
No. 587322 ID: 9ddf68

and we saw it, good work... is anyone keep watch outside of the cell to make sure no one is coming down here?

Alright and where are the other two from, if we can figure that out we can guess their powers.
No. 587351 ID: f839a9

See? You can do it. We're just untrained, or unpracticed.

Everyone should experiment a little, so at least they know how to access it. It kind of seems like you need to be touching rock for it to work. Not sure how it works for everyone else- the rabbit girl made fire, but you don't think you can make earth.

Then we need to find an exit. Or an outside wall you can make an exit in.

...I don't know if it's too much to ask, but when Becca feels the air, can she tell which way it's moving? Maybe we could follow currents towards the outside. There's going to fresh air coming from a window or door to the outside somewhere, right?
No. 587361 ID: 0eaf76
File 140691114324.png - (35.86KB , 1100x900 , 23.png )

Becca stood there, silent. Suddenly, a huge smile spread across her face. "I did it! I felt the air!" You clasp a hand over her mouth, shushing her. She smiled nervously, still giggling to herself. Erwin shuffled towards you, rubbing his hands together. "I-I'm from Coelum...the Water District. Do you think maybe I could do it?" You point to the water stream coming from the wall. He gulped and walked towards it. "Ok...how hard can it be?" Putting his hand under the stream, he closed his eyes as well, concentrating. "The water..." Slowly, the water began to creep up his arm, covering his entire arm, with a bit reaching up over his neck. "Wh-Wha...!"

Erwin flailed his arm a bit, panicking. The water erupted from his arm towards a wall, hitting it with such force that it chipped away bits of stone. "...What was that...?" Becca clapped lightly. "You felt the water!" Lizard boy shivered. "I...I did?" He laughed a bit. "Wow..."

> is anyone keep watch outside of the cell to make sure no one is coming down here?

Ah! A lookout could be good. You quickly slide against the door, peeking outside. No one is around...you can't even hear footsteps.

>...I don't know if it's too much to ask, but when Becca feels the air, can she tell which way it's moving? Maybe we could follow currents towards the outside. There's going to fresh air coming from a window or door to the outside somewhere, right?

You inquire this thought to Becca, who scratched her chin in respone. "The direction of the air...? Well...I...I could try...? I can't guarantee that it'll work but..." A loud slam echoed from outside the cell. Quickly, you and the other duck down behind the door, staying quiet. You could hear a voice.

"She's probably still knocked out in her cell, grab her." Heavy footsteps march past the room, to access a cell on the far side of the hall. The faded rattle of chains were heard and a loud crack. A sharp screeching roar then sounded out, causing you to grip your ears as a reflex. "Come on! Time for you to come with us now! Heheh, you were a bitch to find...we're not going to lose you." It was a slow process, them dragging whatever it was down the hall. You could hear snorts and heavy panting, and a distinct struggle, as if the prisoner was ramming into the walls in order to get out. You saw a flash of something from the tiny window in your cell before the captive and its escorts exited the prison ward.
No. 587362 ID: dc4b80

Go save whoever that is.
No. 587363 ID: f839a9

Sounds like whats her face and at least one guard are here to grab the halfling they were talking about before. Dang. And Walt didn't even get a chance to experiment, yet.

We need to decide quick if we're going to try and do an ambush rescue, or gtfo. ...I'm kind of leaning rescue. There's less unknowns (no creepy staff guy) to worry about, and they were talking about the halfling like she was tough. I'd rather have someone like that with us than brainwashed into attacking us.
No. 587364 ID: 2fd516

Alright ask our water dude to grab some water before we go save the halfling. I'm assuming that's the halfling, anyway.
No. 587366 ID: 40935b

Alright Walt, want to try learning on the fly? Everyone grab a weapon just in case. Irwin, Gather up more water. We have to be on the frontline- Becca and erwin have some range to their powers, so make sure they can keep their distance. Hit fast and hit hard.
No. 587368 ID: 705162

Sounds like time to gather our weapons and catch up to them before they reach the lightwashing room.
By the way, something to try with stone power is to make a rod of stone then hold it from one end while shaving off and launching splinters from the other end as projectiles for a non-terrain-dependent attack.
No. 587384 ID: 9ddf68

Alright if most of this place is stone we might be able to cut off the guards simply by making a giant stone wall in front of them and then while they're cornered hit them with everything we got... We're going to need a new place to train as well after this me thinks.
No. 587391 ID: 0eaf76
File 140692671693.png - (48.99KB , 1100x900 , 24.png )

>Ambush rescue.

You order Erwin to gather up as much water as he can, and for Becca to stay alert in case you needed her powers. Walt...well, Walt's powers aren't apparent just yet. He doesn't talk very much...kinda quiet, but he's on board with your plan. Quietly, you sneak out of the cell and crack open the door to the outer hallway. However, what you see makes you stop.

It was...a giant lizard...? No...it was much more powerful than that. What the guards were trying to drag off to the lightwashing room, it was no mere lizard. It was...a dragon. But that couldn't be possible! Dragons weren't real! It had to be some sort of overgrown reptile...maybe a crocodile? Yet, the curved horns and powerful wings suggested something entirely different. The large dragon had a steel muzzle, and various chains to hold it down. It didn't look happy at all. It was tugging backwards, clawing at the ground to try and break free.

>Summon giant stone wall.

You press your hands against the ground, the flooring in front of the guards shot up to form a wide barricade which made them shout out. "What?! What is this?!" One of the two guards who were hauling the monster turned around and pointed at you. "It's them! From before! Let's snatch them up, too!" He dashed towards you.


You shout at Erwin to start firing, while you try and fire shards of rock at the guards from a long-range. Erwin's water stream blasted at the oncoming guard, causing him to cry out. "GAH!" The sharp string of Erwin's powers hit the bullman straight in the shin. He collapsed on the floor, holding his leg in agony.

"Urgh, what a bunch of brats...!" The remaining guard didn't seem phased by the chunks of rock flying at him. He tied the chains holding the dragon to one of the pedestals built into the floor. "Stay there." The bullman got on all fours and kicked at the ground. His horns exploded in fire and he charged straight for you.
No. 587394 ID: dc4b80

Kneel down and force a column of rock out of the ground to pin him to the ceiling. Make sure to start it several feet ahead of him to account for his movement.
No. 587395 ID: 2fd516

Form some spikes on the ground in front of him. While he's disabled go in and stab him with your rock sword.

After you've dealt with the guards, let's try another experiment. Try to manipulate the metal armor the guards were wearing- it is, after all, just refined earth. If you can manage that, and get some fine control over it, you can break the chains that bind the halfling even without keys. Though, I suspect the guards have the keys anyway.

Also, you can refit the armor so you can wear it, and make a metal weapon out of any extra material.
No. 587397 ID: 705162

Summon a stone wall in front of you (making sure have bracing on your side to prevent him knocking it over onto you), then use your power again to knock it over onto him when he gets close.
No. 587414 ID: 9ddf68

snrrk, is he really charging you? not the sharpest knife in the drawer huh? Just summon another rock pillar in front of him so he'll bash his head in. Or if you think you could pull it off use the pillar to pin him to the ceiling, then deal with guard number 2.
No. 587417 ID: 2fd516

Oh, you should probably capture one of them alive so you can find out about the layout of this place.
No. 587459 ID: 0eaf76
File 140694805661.png - (32.23KB , 1100x900 , 25.png )

>Create a wall.

Focusing your attention on the floor in front of the charging guard, you cause a huge wall to erupt. A loud bash was heard and the guard rolled on the floor. "Ungh..." The flames on his horns disappeared and he proceeded to conk out. The other guard started to scootch backwards. "Ack, alright, alright! D-Don't kill me or nothin'! I'll leave! I'll leave!" He was still clutching his leg, sitting in a pathetic pose. "Just stop throwing rocks at me...! Jeez!"

>Spare him.

>Kill him.
No. 587463 ID: 2fd516

Spare him, but form rocks around his limbs so he won't be able to go anywhere. Get him to spill the beans about the layout of this place, and any potential exits. Act like you have no plans to break through the walls. Also, find out how many elementalists they already have on their side, and if there's any way to free them from the mind control.

Also, get him to hand over his equipment, that'll save us time. If you can't manipulate the metal, just leave it behind.
No. 587465 ID: dc4b80

These guards might be mind controlled minions so killing them seems extreme. The one you knocked out was a fire mage so maybe he was in your place once. That or bull people are just assholes. Also if you start murdering guards they might stop trying to take you alive.

I would seal him to the wall of a cell with some stone cuffs. Maybe we can intimidate him for some info then knock him out. Will be uncomfortable but someone will find him and let him out eventually.
No. 587467 ID: 9ddf68

the fighting might have attracted people's attention, so I say just get what info you can out of him, what do they want with the dragon(?), why are they take people like you, where are the exits, things like that. Then ask where the keys are for the dragon and then RELEASE THE DRAGON... Just be ready to run incase that thing is more then just a little pissed off.
No. 587478 ID: ec9d8b

Slavers don't get mercy. Interrogate him about where we are and then end him.
No. 587483 ID: 0eaf76

>Spare him.

You decide to lock the guards in a cell, while squeezing as much information out of them as you can. However, you must be quick. The noise may have alerted some people to your presence. The bull guards seem a bit heavy to be able to drag all the way back to the prison. So instead, you form stone cuffs around their limbs to keep them down. The dragon struggled some more, growling furiously.

>Why are they taking people?

"Why are we taking Elymems...? Well, I can't s-say that I know a lot, I'm just a grunt, ya know? But all I know is that the head honcho is building some sorta...army...we already have a bunch of people under our control...I'm not one of them, I swear! I was just offered a bit of money, ok?! That...that dragon over there...we've been hunting her for months. She...She wasn't supposed to exist but..." He was visibly shaken up. "Of course the big boss would want something like her on our side..."

>Where are the exits.

"Well...leaving this place would be kinda hard. This entire building it located on an island. We use Water Elymems to get us across the ocean."
No. 587487 ID: 24dc7a

>I was just offered a bit of money
Welp, this guy just admitted to working for brainwashing slavers for cash. Sympathy gone. Lets free the dragon then take a vote on whether we feel like killing these guys.
No. 587509 ID: 40935b

You work for slaving warmongers for cash? Common sense says I should rid the earth of you, but I have places to be.

Make sure the dragon is comfortable with your presence and non-hostile, then remove the bindings.
No. 587511 ID: 9ddf68

>We use Water Elymems to get us across the ocean.

Ok we're going to need to find a map or something and see if we can't steal a boat or make a raft or something. We got a water user with us so we might be able to get out of here but I have no idea how far of the mainland you guys are and I really don't trust this guy with directions. I say knock him out cause he isn't worth the effort but see if you can't get the keys off him first to free the dragon. Hell even if the dragon can't help you no one deserves to be locked up here. Just be ready to run should she try to eat you or something.
No. 587512 ID: 2fd516

Good thing we have a water user, then. Hmm. If any of the group is good with animals maybe they could try calming the dragon down before you release it?
No. 587515 ID: f839a9

Go talk to the dragon. Hey, can you understand me? You want to get out of here? So do we. We're gonna try to get you out of those bonds.

>kill guard?
Leave him. They have to waste time and effort and/or mana freeing him from the stone bindings if he's alive. And if the guards think surrender isn't an option, they're just going to get more desperate when we fight. Right now our edge is that we're desperate.
No. 587521 ID: 0eaf76
File 140695682954.png - (39.13KB , 1100x900 , 26.png )

>Free the dragon first.

You point at the guard, implying you will return. Then you shuffle on over to the large creature. It stared at you, and began to pull at its chains, screeching and flailing. Although it could move its legs a little, it did have restricted movement. Becca stepped forward a bit. "Careful! Don't let it kill you, ok?" It seems the others would much rather watch from a safe distance.

Calming it down would definitely be a safer option, but you have a limited amount of time. If you must calm it down, choose your words carefully.

>"Hey, can you understand me? You want to get out of here? So do we. We're gonna try to get you out of those bonds."

You talk in a soothing voice, trying hard to sound sincere but also serious. You keep your hands up in a defensive manner, assuring it that you're on its side. The dragon's struggles seem to simmer down a bit, and it begins to nod, as if it understands you. The gaze in its eyes softens and it lies down on its stomach, letting out a quiet groaning noise.
No. 587523 ID: 2fd516

Good! Let's release it.
No. 587524 ID: 9ddf68

do any of the guards have the keys on them to let her out? If not we can at least break the thing she's tied to into small enough pieces that her chain will be free (it is made of stone)
No. 587525 ID: f839a9

All right, see if you can find a key. If not, we can break the metal with your stone manipulation or Erwin's water cutting.

Be sure to offer reassurance / praise to your group. They need the morale. Good work, guys.

And someone should be standing lookout, if possible.
No. 587526 ID: 24dc7a

Start by untying the chain tied to the statue, then start working on other chains that can be untied. Have one of the group stand watch while the others check the guards for keys. The chains that hang off more should be breakable with stone manipulation but the tighter parts like the muzzle could be tricky if we can't unlock or reshape them.
No. 587532 ID: 0eaf76
File 140695866015.png - (35.20KB , 1100x900 , 27.png )

>Give morale to team.

Turning around on a whim, you give your crew a bit of an applause, congratulating them...given the circumstances. Becca gave a silly grin. "Heh...well, I guess considering our situation, we're doing ok." Erwin clapped his hands together, chuckling lightly. "Y-Yeah! Maybe we'll actually be able to get home...if we manage to find some way off of this island."

>Release dragon, keep someone on watch.

After the little pep talk, you turn around and place your palm on the shackles. Gripping on them tight, you can feel the metal begin to wear away, almost dissolving in your hand. You proceed to continuously break off all of its restraints until it finally had room to breathe. Pointing to Erwin and Walt, you instruct them to look around in case anyone decides to barge in. The dragon arched its back and stretched out its wings. It stood there for a moment before launching itself at you. Using its weight, it pinned you to the floor and pressed its nose against yours, growling. Becca gasped out, taking a stride back. "A-Abel!"

You stared into the dragon's eyes, frozen. It raised its head and snorted. "So you were captured as well...?" Its voice was definitely that of a "she". It was powerful, confident, and demanding. "Does that mean I can trust you? A dragon doesn't offer her loyalty with such ease, you know."
No. 587533 ID: 53ba34

"yes, we are all trying to escape this place"
No. 587536 ID: f839a9

>wears away metal with our hands
Earth mastery includes metal as well as stone? Useful. You might be able to make better things than a stone sword.

>what say
If my deeds haven't inspired a measure of trust, I don't see words swaying you.

And I'm not looking for your allegiance or loyalty. Just cooperation. We have a common enemy, right? None of us want to be hear, or to be forced to serve the people running this place.
No. 587537 ID: 9ddf68

whether you chose to trust us or not is up to you, all I know is that we're trying to get out of here and also seeing if we can't free anyone else along the way. That and if we happen to run across something important looking maybe steal or smash it cause we're not exactly found of the people who work here.
No. 587542 ID: 2fd516

Must... resist urge to flirt with dragoness.

Tell her she has nothing to fear from you. What kind of man would dare betray a dragon?
No. 587546 ID: 0eaf76
File 140696078544.png - (33.61KB , 1100x900 , 28.png )

>"And I'm not looking for your allegiance or loyalty. Just cooperation. We have a common enemy, right? None of us want to be here, or to be forced to serve the people running this place."

She squints and shakes her head with a huff. "Fine. I am too tired to argue." She steps off of you and lies down on the floor, curling up in a ball. Her wings wrap around her and the air in the hall begins to shift. Fire swirls around the dragon's figure, evolving into a huge vortex that envelopes her entire form. It lasts for a few moments before thinning out to reveal a much less intimidating person sitting on the ground in the dragon's place.

She looks up at you, puffing her cheeks out. "What were you expecting...? I am a halfling after all. This form is much more convenient anyways...now let's go."

>Return to cell.

>Explore different area.
No. 587547 ID: f839a9

Try to ignore the fact that she's naked.

Ask her name, do introductions, then we need to start thinking about our next move. We can't stay here- they'll send more guards when halfling here doesn't show up where she's supposed to.
No. 587548 ID: 9ddf68

well even if no one heard the fight just now they will wonder why those two guards have brought the dragon with them yet and will send someone down to look eventually so I say it's best to move on.

Ask her what she knows of this place and ask the group as a whole what they think we should do next. I mean they have to have ideas as well and if we can get them to voice there thoughts every now and again it will at least make it feel like we care what they have to say.
No. 587550 ID: 256d52

Try to breathe. You've just been stood on and aaaaah that is too cute.

Ask her what a halfling is. Find her some clothes.
No. 587551 ID: 256d52

And explore a different area - they'll start looking once they know she's loose.
No. 587556 ID: 2fd516

NNNGGHHH Ask her if there are more dragons where she came from and if they are all as cute as she is.

Uh. Okay. Well, at least find out where the quiet guy is from. Then, let's open up one of the walls. You can't just go back to the cells. They'll come investigating why the halfling hasn't arrived, and so they will either find the guards you restrained or discover you in the cells.
No. 587591 ID: 707a11

Hint: don't ask this.
No. 587594 ID: 40935b

We need to get moving, we've made our presence known here. Also you need clothes.
No. 587598 ID: 07463b

It's time to get moving, though we'll a direction first.

Let's put Walt on looking after / introducing the halfling, and Erwin can help Becca try to sense the air blowing through the exits.
Abel needs to have a chat with the guard about how to get out.

If Becca and the guard agree, then we'll have a clear idea where to go. Clothes and proper introductions will have to wait.
No. 587783 ID: 0eaf76
File 140709010291.png - (36.60KB , 1100x900 , 29.png )

>Explore different area.

It might be best to find a new hiding spot in the meantime. Authorities have probably been notified of the halfling's escape, and therefore a new hideout is in order. Quickly, you introduce everybody, stating their names and such. The halfling places a hand on her chest, raising her chin. "My name is Alrauna. I am a dragon halfling. That is how I can change my form like this. My father was a dragon and my mother...well, I'm not sure about her."

>Ask Walt what his District is.

Walt looks up at you with a straight face. "Terran, just like you." He spoke in a monotone voice, which made you a bit uncomfortable. You tell Walt he is in charge of looking after the halfling, and he just nods accordingly.

>Ask guard where exits are.

The guard gave a loose shrug. "I-I don't know...probably in the basement. That's where the docks are...to u-unload the captives. You could probably find a boat or something down there..." He struggled in his spot, groaning. "There's security down there! You won't be able to get off without making some sort of ruckus...!" You abandon the restrained guard and rush down the hallway. Eventually you come across an opening in the wall. There were two sets of staircases, one going up and one going down.


No. 587786 ID: f839a9

Hmm. If we go up, we eventually just hit the roof. Maybe our two flyers could get away that way, but that doesn't help everyone else.

Might as well head down. The way in could also be a way out, and if we run into a load of incoming prisoners, then there will be more of us.
No. 587801 ID: 2fd516

...I think Walt got a face-full of that lightwash thing when it was used on the rabbit. If I'm right, he's not gonna be acting on his own from now on. He might even follow the orders of anyone that talks to him... That means he could be used against us in a fight. See if you can confirm he's lightwashed. Like, ask him if he stared into the light crystal when it flashed. Then order him to do something silly or something that he would otherwise likely refuse to do normally, like slap himself in the face.

Also, go up. If you can get to the roof, you can probably just make stairs or something to get down to the water's edge. You can make a small stone boat and push it into the water, then use water-control to move it around.
No. 587810 ID: 9ddf68

hmm, I'm thinking up just so we can get a lay of the land. Plus if the way to escape is down and this base is on the lookout for escaped prisoners then this place probably has more of it's guards near the docks then the roof.
No. 587905 ID: 07463b

>I think Walt got a face-full of that lightwash thing when it was used on the rabbit.
Hmm, that's hard to say.
It could be that light the affected him, (though it didn't affect the three people down in the room) but it could be a bunch of other things too. As long as he's mostly with it, that's going to have to do for now - we've hung this area long enough as it is.

Once we're moving though, check in with him and ask if he's feeling okay.

I don't like the idea of running head-on into the security at the dock, but I'm not seeing much of an alternative either. Go down there, but try to keep a low profile. We can work out a minimum-ruckus escape plan once we've actually seen the docks.
No. 588007 ID: ccd544

Do you still know where you are relative to the lightwash crystal staff room?

Neutralizing that existential threat is top priority, after identifying a route of escape!
No. 588031 ID: ccd544

Let everyone else know about the importance of the lightwashing threat!

We are inside of their defenses, in the eye of the storm; leaving now only invites their hidden agents to attack us in the open! This is our only chance to secure a victory with surprise (and a dragon) on our side!
No. 588130 ID: 0eaf76
File 140719777634.png - (45.22KB , 1100x900 , 30.png )

>Check in with Walt.

You wave your hand in front of Walt's face and ask if he looked at the light during that display of enslavement. The porcupine raised an eyebrow and shook his head. "No...even if I did I don't feel any different."

>Ask to do something silly.

Walt just refused. "I'm not embarassing myself in front of you." He crossed his arms, looking a bit irritated with your suspicions.

>Go downstairs, keep low profile.

You decide that the quickest way out is to go downstairs, but you must try to stay inconspicuous. If you don't act suspiciously, it won't be easy to find you right? Perhaps you could even pretend to be lightwashed...? How hard could it be...? Your group of misfits trek down the flight of spiral stairs. You notice it gets colder the further you go down. The walls gain a noteable glimmer to them, as if they were glossed over. Out of the corner of your eye you notice Alrauna rubbing her arms. Her wings close around her body tightly, lips spreading out in a thin line.

When you finally reach the bottom, you come across a hallway. The floor is damper and you can hear the sound of water droplets hitting the stone floor. Wooden torches lined the walls to provide a cheap source of lighting.

>Go left.

>Go right.
No. 588132 ID: 2fd516

Ahem. We're in the basement, which appears to be underwater, looking for the docks, which are above water? We've been lied to.

That doesn't mean we can't take advantage of this situation, though. Let's flood the place. Make a wall here to block the water flow, then bust open the wall that's leaking even though you can't see it. Then we retreat upstairs.
No. 588141 ID: e3aff6

Something we should try is to feel the floor and without changing it try and get a sense of the surrounding stone. Hopefully we might be able to tell which floors or walls we can productively break through. If that doesn't yield anything I think we should go back and go upwards.

>We've been lied to.
Either that, or he neglected to mention that their mode of transport is some fancy elym operated bubble system. Either way we can't get all of us out that way with just one water elym.

>flood the place.
That will probably cause significant damage and chaos, but I don't think it will entirely destroy the place, so we should save that plan for when we have another plan prepared to take advantage of the confusion.
No. 588143 ID: 2fd516

Well if we're not gonna bust through the wall then we may as well explore while we're here.

Go left.
No. 588163 ID: cccea0

Come to the sudden realization that while the rest of you are just now learning to use your powers, that rabbit girl already knew how to use hers. It's probably too late to mean anything at this point, but she knows things you don't.
No. 588175 ID: f839a9

Uh, ask Erwin if we can sense anything useful from the water? If there's an exit, maybe it's in the direction with more water.

Or she improvised in the heat of the moment. Fire is often associated with things like impulse, or anger.

>Alrauna cold
Naked, skinny, reptilian, and fire-element. Cold is like 4x super effective against her. I'd suggest offering her something, but we don't exactly have much in the way of clothes.
No. 588235 ID: cfe8e5

Well, we have a shirt and fur, while she has neither, so maybe offering your shirt help.

Anyway, head left for now. The water dripping in doesn't necessarily mean this place is underwater, just that there's a water source above you (For example, a river running above, emptying via waterfall into whatever body of water the docks are attached to; and waterfall-hidden caves are good places for a slavery ring to hide out).
No. 588261 ID: 0eaf76
File 140729205829.png - (34.95KB , 1100x900 , 31.png )

>Offer shirt to Alrauna.

Pinching the bottom of your shirt, you turn to the dragon girl, offering it to her. She stares at you with eyes that imply gratitude, but she immediately scrunches up her face in anger.

"I don't want to touch any of your dirty clothes..." She hisses. "I...I'm fine on my own, I don't need your help." Becca glances at you and shrugs her shoulders.

>Explore, go left.

You decide to take a left turn and venture through the dank chambers. Erwin brushes his palm against the stone walls, frowning. "There's definitely water above us...but it's moving really fast..." He mutters. "I can't really get a clear picture of the geography though...sorry." You thank him anyways. Any information is good enough at this point.

You're stopped by a sudden person blocking your path. It's a stout deer girl, standing in one place. As you approach, she doesn't seem to react to your presence at all. The girl is leaned up against the wall, hugging herself tightly. She's whispering to herself, although it's too soft for you to hear. Her eyes are wide and unblinking. Alrauna narrows her eyes. "...Don't try and save her." She growls. "Just leave her."

>Talk to her.

>Go on by.
No. 588262 ID: 51d9ee

Ask Alaruna what's up with her that she's a danger, incase there are others like her...But I'm personally getting a vibe that if we were to approach her she'd flip out with all four elements and kill us all horribly...Or maybe she's why the water's moving quickly.
Somehow, I suspect it'd be a bad idea.
No. 588264 ID: 2fd516

I feel as though this is dangerous. We don't know anything about how lightwashing works and we sure don't have the ability to snap them out of it. If we try, she'll likely shriek out an alarm or even worse attack us. Also... if there are more of them down here we could be surrounded quickly by element users, possibly as strong as we are...

Go on by. Ask Alrauna what she knows about the lightwashing thing.
No. 588267 ID: dc4b80

Yeah learn more but avoid the girl for now. She might be actively using her powers to move the water or something.

I know it sucks to not be able to do anything to help yet but trying to save everyone right now will just end up with you getting caught and mind raped. So survive and escape so you can come back and stop this.

Now if you do find a way of reversing there mind control while you are down here start freeing everyone you run across.

Oh and tell the dragon girl that she was about 5 minutes away from it happening to her so maybe a bit of compassion is in order.
No. 588272 ID: 9ddf68

"Alrauna any idea what this is?"

Also keep your distance, something is very off here.
No. 588273 ID: cfe8e5

I agree that unblinking, mumbling people is kind of creepy and probably bad news, but still ask Alaruna what she means; maybe she knows something we don't. Is she lightwashed (The only lightwashed person we've seen just seemed despondent, not wide-eyed-and-mumbling-crazy)? Or is this something else?

If it's just a feeling she has.. maybe at least ask if the deer's alright. But only if Alaruna doesn't have a good reason for worrying.

But yeah, prioritize finding an exit for now. once you know your escape route it becomes easier to plan to save anyone else that needs saving.
No. 588275 ID: 6cb462

Perhaps Alrauna heard what the deer was whispering which justifies leaving her. Maybe she is whispering a curse or something. Nonetheless, something is off here. Stay away from the deer. Make sure no one else tries to get near her either.

Also, since we have no idea how big this place is, we might want to leave some kind of trail in case you get lost. Make sure the trail is not too obvious though, you don't want to be followed.
No. 588276 ID: 761017

Alrauna is a fire elemym, she can carry one of the torches, amplify the flame a little and direct tendrils of heat and fire around herself.
She has no clothes to burn, and she should be immune to fire.
No. 588277 ID: 9dd1ee

Talk to cute deer, make friends
No. 588290 ID: f839a9

Ask Alrauna if she knows something you don't, here.

Deer girl's not acting like a guard, but she's not acting like an escaped prisoner either. She's something else, that they allow, or don't care about?

...I don't suppose Becca can focus on the wind to hear what she's saying?
No. 588294 ID: 0eaf76
File 140730318894.png - (44.33KB , 1100x900 , 32.png )

>"Alrauna any idea what this is?"

The dragon halfling reached up and took one of the torches, holding it close to her body. She then turned to you and frowned. "...You know what lightwashing is, right?" You nod your head, but explain you've only seen it happen from a distance. "So you don't know what it actually does...?" You shake your head. "Well..." Alrauna shifts her gaze over to the deer girl and then back to you. "If no person of authority is actually here, she can't do anything. You saw the crystal staff they used for lightwashing? That's their source of command. That crystal...it gives the user a power over anyone who's been lightwashed. I have no idea how they get the crystal, but it's not just in the staff. People wear them as necklaces...bracelets...even embedded in their clothes. Wearing a crystal gives you complete control. But...there's a catch.

See, someone who's lightwashed, they know what's going on. They're completely conscious and awake, they just can't move their bodies on their own. D-Don't ask how I know all of this...but the thing I don't know is how to snap someone out of it. Other thing is, lightwashed people are pretty sensitive. If they're pushed around or ordered by someone who isn't eligible to control them, they turn on you and attack you instead. So just...don't touch her, just move on and hope we don't run into anyone."
No. 588296 ID: 761017

Declare that our new mission is to get one of those crystals.
You know where one is, and you had planned on destroying it, but to know that there are more of them changes this single fight into a war over our very souls!
No. 588297 ID: f839a9

So she can't move, and if we try to move her, she'll attack us. And she's in there, helpless to do anything.

...they're going to pay for this. Gotta be some way to break the control of free people. This is just wrong.

Apologize to the deer as you pass. You're sorry you don't have any way to help, just now.
No. 588300 ID: 9ddf68

...what happens if someone smashes one of the crystals? does that do anything?
No. 588303 ID: 761017

Realize that there IS a way to snap them out of it!

Give a Lightwashed a crystal shard to let them control themselves.
No. 588307 ID: 2fd516

That... might work? Alrauna would know.

Alright. Knowledge gained, we should keep going. However, keep in mind she's still back here. If we get chased in this direction, she could be forced to turn on us by whoever's chasing us. Stealth has never been more important.
No. 588331 ID: cfe8e5

Wow, that's terrifying. Pas by, but at least let her know you're going to try to help her. Don't say anything that might be interpreted as an order. Something like "Hey, we're going to find the exit, and then we're going to try to come back for you." Maybe that'll ease her mind, at least, which is all we can do for her right now.
No. 588342 ID: 6cb462

It might be a good idea to create a wall around her so that none of the guards can reach, and command her.
Leave a small hole in the wall for her to breath though, and don't forget she is there in case you figure out how to turn her back to normal later.

I wonder why she is out in the open like that, and not in prison though. I sense a trap.
No. 588344 ID: cfe8e5

While that might be a good idea in the pragmatic sense, you're kind of walling in someone who doesn't have control of themselves and is already panicked; which is probably not good from a mental health perspective.

You bring up a god point though, this might be a trap. Maybe she has orders to shout if someone unauthorized passes, or something. Maybe it'd be good to check out the other hallway first, in light of that.
No. 588349 ID: 40935b

Alright. We'll need to get our hands on one of those crystals sooner or later, in the meantime, let's keep moving.
No. 588401 ID: 0eaf76
File 140736315280.png - (53.11KB , 1100x900 , 33.png )

>Apologize to girl.

As you quietly slip by her, you whisper an apology to her, saying you're sorry you can't save her right now. Alrauna rolled her eyes behind you, urging you to hurry it up. You inquire what would happen if you smashed the crystal. Erwin piped up at that comment. "Yeah...! If we break the crystals then that should save them, right...?" The halfling stayed silent as you walked on. "In theory, yes." She finally replied. "I actually have no idea how to reverse the effects. It's likely that it would work, but I don't know for sure. I'd rather not try it...for all we know it could make matters worse."

The winding hall continued on for quite a while. You scale down a small set of stairs and start to notice a few things changing. Faintly, from above you, you can distinctly hear the sound of rushing water. You can smell it, too. A spongey odor that reminds you of stale water, sitting in the gutter of some rundown pothole. You had to crinkle your nose a bit. Becca huffed silently in the back of the group. "It smells weird down here...wonder what's up."

The wall to the right of you began to taper off, before revealing a small area. A little docking station. In the middle ran a wide stream of water where wooden platforms were aligned with the edge of the dock. Wooden boats were also stacked up against a wall, to be used by other people. You saw a few guards standing watch and then two large dogs unloading a few things. They were identical, supposedly twins. The skinnier one spoke up first. "Bring in the next boat...!" He shouted. From the tunnel at the end of the dock, a wooden boat floated towards a platform. On the boat was a bull guard, a lightwashed Elymem and two small children, tied up and gagged. They were sobbing quietly, visibly trembling in their restraints. Alrauna patted the fire out with as much stealth as she could, setting the burnt out torch stick on the ground. "Stay low..." She ordered.
No. 588404 ID: 2fd516

Yeah there's probably too many here to deal with. We'll have to wait until all the boats are processed before taking out the guards and stealing a boat to escape.

Are they REALLY going to lightwash children to use as soldiers? That's pretty monstrous.
No. 588406 ID: 53ba34

what i want to know is where they are getting all these people to lightwash FROM, did one half of the country decide to enslave the other half? this is just gonna death spiral when they run out of people and the person demanding slaves gets upset.

anyway, we can wait until the person giving orders puts themselves into overconfident danger by walking off alone. where we then knock them out and steal their crystal.
No. 588409 ID: 9ddf68

to many here for now, we're going to have to wait until we can get to a point where they're aren't many guards before we can do anything.
No. 588411 ID: 2f2fc2

If I was in this world I'd have murdered these people... thinking about this form of control is sick
No. 588415 ID: 40935b

As much as I'd like to save those kids, if those guards give an order to the whitewashed, we wouldn't be able to fight them effectively without killing them. We'll need to backtrack and get one of those crystals.
No. 588418 ID: e3aff6

They are unloading the boat here, so they will be offloading the prisoners. That means they will be splitting up to escort the prisoners into the fort, possibly this way. Be ready to quietly fall back so we can ambush the prisoner escorting group away from the dock group.
No. 588454 ID: 5e9bbd

It looks like that guard told the truth: This is the docks, and there are a lot of guards around.
As awful as it is, I'm going to maintain that we shouldn't try to stage a rescue: Leaving people behind is terrible, but to actually do something about this place we need to get out of it.
See if you can find somewhere out of the way to watch: we need to see what's going on, but a fight could get a lot of attention.

>That crystal...it gives the user a power over anyone who's been lightwashed.
>See, someone who's lightwashed, they know what's going on.
I can see lightwashing working in three different ways: inducing brainwashing, enchantment, and direct control. But if the victim is still clearly aware, then it's doesn't sound like normal brainwashing.
Breaking the crystals would help if the they were were directly controlling the victims. However, if lightwashing is an enchantment then breaking the crystals won't help, and the crystals might actually be needed to undo it.

Ask Alrauna if any crystal can control any lightwashed person - if that's the case, then I doubt breaking them will help.
No. 588491 ID: f839a9

>I actually have no idea how to reverse the effects. It's likely that it would work, but I don't know for sure.
She's right that maybe we shouldn't try breaking them right off the bat, since we don't know if that will release them, or do something terrible like kill them or drive them insane, or just leave them trapped in their bodies. If we find ourselves in possession of a prisoner and a crystal, we should experiment with less drastic measures, first. (Like, could we order someone free?).

Didn't the guard say they used water people to bring in prisoners? That means one of those people is a caster, and more dangerous. And that one of the guards likely has a control crystal on their person.

If and when we fight, first priority goes to disabling the enemy-controlled caster, or getting ahold of the control crystal so we can order him to stand down or target his captors.
No. 588565 ID: 0eaf76
File 140743204996.png - (54.50KB , 1100x900 , 34.png )

>Ask Alrauna if any crystal can control any lightwashed person.

She raised her head to look at you from her crouched position. "...I think so. I don't think you need a specific crystal to control a specific person. Which is a big problem for us..." Scanning over everything, she started to scootch backwards.

You decide it would be better to wait until a few people are more isolated...but for now, you stay still and watch. The larger of the two dog brothers raised up a hand, whistling. The Elymem in the back of the boat looked up with a blank stare and started walking towards him. "Alright, you. Take these kids to the prison. Don't let anyone stop you, ok? I heard a few troublemakers were wanderin' about..." He snarled under his breath and waved off the Elymem.

The two kids were hoisted up from their seat by the bullman, and the lightwashed boy proceeded to herd them off down the hall opposite of where you were standing. Although the two kids noticed you out of the corners of their eyes, the Elymem passed by without a second thought.

The smaller of the two brother clapped his hands. "Time to break up for the dinner break!" He barked. "Clean up these boats, guard." The bullman grunted in response. "Whaddya say, Orvick? You hungry?" The other twin, Orvick, smirked. "Starved." The pair of them turned and walked down the dock area, to a door that was on the other wall. You exhale in relief that they didn't walk towards you.
No. 588567 ID: dc4b80

I say kill the two guys and retrieve whatever control item they have on them. Make a stone wall in front of the door to keep out reinforcements and crush them with rocks if you have to.

Then we can counter any orders that might be in place on any lightwashed you might run across. Will give you a lot more options for escaping and let you rescue more people on the way out.
No. 588571 ID: 5f5b96

We need to hit those guards hard, and fast. Take them out from behind. Make them unconscious or dead asap before they can give new orders to the lightwashed Elymem. Then search them, grab their control rock, and use it to get him to stand down, freeing the kids.

That works, we'll see about getting out of here with that boat.
No. 588572 ID: 2fd516

...let's save the kids. The lightwashed escort won't do anything except what he's told, so we can easily ambush him and knock him out. I want to get that crystal from the twins but I don't know if we can pull that off considering where they're going.
No. 588575 ID: bb78f2

...Couldn't whitewashing also simply be erased by giving the order to stop being whitewashed if you have a crystal?
I mean, that's a feedback loop, so it might be harmful, but if any crystal can control them, destroying the crystal that originally whitewashed 'em would do nothing.
So my guess is a simple feedback loop should free them. Overload the wash, you know?
A cliche thing that might work is reminding the whitewashed who they were or inspiring them with more willpower. Spits said the ones with weak willpower were the ones easiest to wash... so maybe if you just cheer 'em on and get their spirits up you can break them free?
No. 588576 ID: 40935b

Are the guards still there? If so, knock out the whitewashed. Otherwise, take out those two guys and steal their shit.
No. 588583 ID: ccd544

Those two guys look like good interrogation prospects!
If they manage the docks they know what's going on, and ripping apart the flesh of one brother will convince the other brother to talk.

To silence them and capture them simultaneously, trap them in a tomb of rock!

When we are finished interrogating them, cursh them to death and bury them into the wall.
No. 588592 ID: dc4b80


It could very well be near impossible to whitewash fully trained Elymems. That could be why they are going for people who don't even know they have powers.

If the war outside has gone on long enough tons of knowledge could have been lost. A generation or two goes by and you have tons of people who have no idea magic even exists.

The thing is that your powers are most likely different than whatever the light washing uses. It looks like some sort of spirit magic that's not tied to one element. There where magical symbols and chanting involved with that staff. Maybe its just a conduit that lets a strong mind control a weaker one but it could be more.
No. 588599 ID: 2f2fc2

I'm up to my neck in murder them horribly with the jagged blade of justice...and then twist
No. 588636 ID: cfe8e5

I agree with this. you've got two of them with crystals currently isolated; take them out en route before they can meet up with anyone else. Hit them hard and fast.
No. 588652 ID: a36601

Take out the two brothers. While it is a pity that those two kids will go to the prison we wouldn't be much better off if we just save them. Getting the crystals lets us save many people, fight off the captors better, and help secure a way out.
No. 588763 ID: 0eaf76
File 140754151579.png - (45.93KB , 1100x900 , 35.png )

>Take out the two brothers.

You turn around and explain your plan to the team. In order to kill two birds with one stone, you command Becca, Erwin and Walt to ambush the lightwashed Elymem and you and Alrauna will take out the two brothers. Alrauna chews on her finger tips, sighing. "Abel I...I don't think--"

Becca interrupted her before she could finish. "Ok, sounds good. We'll meet back here." The three of them crawled off after the kids and you turn back to face Alrauna. You ask her to finish what she was saying before. She bites on her lower lip.

"N-Nevermind. Let's go." You and the halfling stay low and quickly sneak off down the hallway that the brothers strode off to. The guards were too busy hoisting the boats out to notice you. They weren't the smartest guards, were they? Neither were the brothers apparently. You could hear their laughs from all the way down the corridor.

"Ah, brother! This is too easy. Do you know what they're gonna do with those kids?" The smaller one asked. Orvick, the eldest, shrugged.

"I heard something about an army. The boss wants us to get as many as we can before the next full moon. That's when he plans on carrying out the next step of the plan. Shouldn't you know that, Levi?"

Levi, the youngest, snirked in contained laughter. "I don't know shit! No one tells me anything. All I know is that we're supposed to get the kids we nab to the prison ward."

You kneel on the ground and summon a huge blockade to shoot up in front of them. They both barked in surprise, taking steps backward. "What the--" You cause a wall to pop up behind you, to cut off anyone coming from behind. The two brother turned around and stared at you.

"Who the hell are you?!" cried Levi. But Orvick merely narrowed his eyes and stared at Alrauna for a few moments. "You...You're that fucking halfling! You dare show your stupid face up here again?! Actually...why would you want to come back? I bet they dragged you back here...psh, we don't need you. I don't need you. Or did you come back for some more of me? Can't resist?" A nasty smile spread across his face.

Alrauna crossed her arms, sliding backwards to stand behind you. "Nice to see you too, Orvick." She averted her gaze to stare at the wall. "Just lock them up, Abel..." You comply and force pillars to free up from the walls, sandwiching the two brothers together.

"ARGH! Wh-- L-Let us go!" Levi snarled. "What the hell do you want with us?!"

>Ask questions. (Specify.)

>Kill them and loot them now.
No. 588766 ID: 40935b

Where are your crystals, how big is this base, how many guards are in it, who's in charge, where are the exits, how many people have you kidnapped, how can you undo the whitewashing.

If they even think of jerking you around, put some pressure on them. Literally.
No. 588767 ID: dc4b80

Get as many questions from them as you can. Then depending on how they respond you can decide if they deserve to not get squished.

Find out what makes someone think its ok to not just kidnap strangers and children but destroy there minds as well. Even if light washing is reversible many people would never recover from it.
No. 588768 ID: dc4b80

Oh and find out how they know Alrauna and how she knows them. That exchange was a bit suspicious.
No. 588771 ID: a36601

>"Abel I...I don't think--"
>did you come back for some more of me?
>She averted her gaze

They certainly have a past. Not a good one though, probably not one that Alrauna wants to relive. It's her chance to enact vengeance on them. (after you are through questioning)

So many good questions.
No. 588775 ID: e3aff6

- Number of guards in their forces
- Number of elyms in their forces (lightwashed and otherwise)
- What is this place anyway? Some kind of abandoned fortress or something?
- Where were they from beforehand and how were they hired? (Some guy in a robe just come up and say 'wanna enslave people for cash'?)

Lets save that bit until after we ask out other questions.
No. 588791 ID: 9ddf68

if they don't answer, fell free to add a little bit of a squeeze to these two until they start talking.
No. 588792 ID: 2f2fc2

Don't care about her past right now, if she's helping then we're good.....

ask one or two questions while they're in pain and then end them
No. 588793 ID: bb78f2

Why are you so pissed at us for doing a completely understandable thing?
We'll kill you if you don't satisfy us, so calm down and cooperate.
No. 588797 ID: 2fd516

Let's be quick about the questioning. Get their crystals, find out how many guards and lightwashed elemyns they have, who that man in the cloak was, and that's IT. If they don't answer immediately don't bother asking a second time. We can't spend any time here, the others will need our help immediately and the guards won't be distracted forever.

Also ask Alrauna if she wants them dead or just broken. If broken, smack their heads together so that they go unconscious and can't scream, then break their legs and arms. If dead, shove spikes through their heads.

Oh, take their weapons, obviously, if they have any.
No. 588798 ID: 761017

Remember, we want to leave no traces of them.

When you choose to kill them, open a hole in the floor and bury them.

Ask for where the food and drink is!
Also a map!
No. 588800 ID: 0eaf76
File 140757198130.png - (51.73KB , 1100x900 , 36.png )

>Where are your crystals?

Levi laughed like a hyena, body squirming as he did. "Like we'd tell YOU." All you had to do was squeeze them together for him to wheeze out with a short breath. "Guh! F-Fuck ease up okay?! I can't feel my fucking lungs...!" Orvick simply sat there, bearing the weight of the stone. "They're a-around our necks...as necklaces..."

Alrauna strided over to the two, reaching inside of their jackets to snap off both of their necklaces. On the end were tiny crystals, similar to the ones on the end of the staff. They shimmered a pretty sky blue, but had an ominous glint to them that suggested you handle them with care.

"Careful! If you break that crystal...j-just don't break it...!" Levi twisted his body, trying to wriggle his way out.

>How many guards do they have?

"Ugh, I don't know. There's a lot. I have no idea where they come from...cow pastures or something I don't know..."

>How many Elymems do they have?

"At least a 100...? Not enough for an army that's for sure. There aren't many out there, but we spend a long-ass time looking for them."

>How big is this base and where is this base located?

"This is a huge island. This palace...it covers most of the island. I have no idea how far away from the mainland it is. Probably several miles...We have rooms in this place to train the little bastards...and places to keep them locked up."

>Who's in charge?

"I haven't even met the big boss in person. No one knows who he is. He has a buncha little bosses to bitch at us for him...I doubt you'll ever get to meet the leader...he stays up in the top part of the palace, watching everything."

>Food and map.

"We don't have a map...! And there's food in the kitchen...it's upstairs at the end of the hallway, opposite of the prison ward. There, we've answered all your questions now let us go...!"

>Ask Alrauna if she wants them dead or just broken.

The halfling stared at them with unforgiving eyes. She grabbed a hold of your left sleeve, sighing. "They don't deserve to die...just break their legs or something..." You do as she says and walk up to both of them, smacking their heads together to knock them out. Then you proceed to mash their legs with a pressurized stone clamp. The dreadful cracking of their bones being mashed together made you cringe, but it had to be done.

>Hurry back to find the others.

You let the wall behind you down and run off to find Becca and the others. Alrauna lingered behind for a few moments before following you. The guards were gone from the dock, and you could hear heavy noises from the other hallway. Running faster, you find the guards unconscious on the floor and shortly after you come across the lightwashed Elymem and the others.

Erwin was on the ground, writhing in pain. Walt was crouched on the floor, with a huge stone shield sprung up in front of him, Becca sitting beside him. "A-Abel!" She shouted out. "It's the Elymem, we don't know what happened, he's over there...! We...We're too scared to get close..." You see the young kid from before, kneeling on the ground holding his head with both hands.

"LET ME GO...!" He shrieked, claws digging into his own head. The two captured kids from the boat were huddled up against a wall the little ways ahead, shivering and crying like before.
No. 588801 ID: bb78f2

Whisper into a crystal that he's free?
Alrauna, any advice against doing that? He's fighting, so like, just wondering if that would actively go against his attempts to break free of whitewashing by giving him the order of being free or if by giving the order of being free it will let him go?
No. 588802 ID: 53ba34

maybe more specific "do as you wish"
No. 588811 ID: 2f4b71

We probably need to work within the confines of existing orders, rather than trying to apply duelling compulsions.
>Take these kids to the prison. Don't let anyone stop you, ok?
The Gordian solution would be to allow this to happen. Unbind the children, have them walk along with him (and you) to the prison, and don't tell him to stop (but 'slow down' isn't prohibited by the orders). The orders make no mention of making sure they actually enter the prison, and no mention of what he needs to to once he reaches the prison.
No. 588816 ID: 40935b

First try the order 'stop'. If that conflicts with the previous order in a visibly distressing way, Just follow him to the prison and tell him to act on free will there.
No. 588831 ID: ec2e47

Fist give the order to cancel all previous orders. Then try >>588802
No. 588849 ID: a19cbe

I don't think we need to fully let him complete his previous order- the stones must allow for new orders or to countermand old orders, or else they make for pretty shitty weapons. What good are weapons you can't reorient, soldiers you can't order to respond to the situation?

Try that. Hold the crystal aloft and say: I let you go.

If that doesn't work, you might have to resort to ordering him to calm down. Then maybe you could talk to him, and try working out a way so he's not trapped.
No. 588880 ID: 2fd516

We need to find out what happens if a crystal breaks. ...it might kill all the lightwashed, which would be bad for both us and the bad guys. On the other hand it might release them, which would be bad for the bad guys.

Or maybe it's reverse psychology and breaking one lightwashes everyone in range.
No. 589016 ID: 0eaf76
File 140772608293.png - (60.34KB , 1100x900 , 37.png )

>Order him to calm down.

Clutching one of the necklaces in your hand, you kneel down beside him and whisper. For him to calm down and stop yelling. Almost immediately his posture loosens up and he's sitting up straight, no longer screaming. You then try to release him. By saying "I let you go." You hold your breath, but nothing happened. He just sits there, wide eyed and silent. Alrauna snatches the necklace from your hands and shoves the boy onto his back, climbing on top of his torso. She then presses the crystal against the boy's chest, closes her eyes, muttering a strange chant. You couldn't make out anything she was saying...it was like it was in a different language. The crystal began to glow, and slowly the boy's eyes started to close. When the chant was complete, Alrauna got off of his body and handed the crystal back to you. The Elymem boy's eyes fluttered open and he sat up quickly, coughing into his hand. "Ugh...! Wh-Where am I? Who the hell are you?" He looked absolutely panicked, head swinging about, eyes darting every which way. "Last thing I remember...I was taken from my home and...brought to this weird island..."

He then looks straight at you. "Are you responsible for this?! Answer me! I want to go home, do you know where we are?"
No. 589020 ID: dc4b80

Well that is a really good sign. If they do not remember what happened we do not have to worry about dealing with horrible mental damage with everyone we rescue. Still evil but not as vicious as we thought.

Quickly explain that we just rescued him from a nasty form of mind control. That some unknown criminal is kidnapping people with innate magical abilities and bringing them here to make a army.

Then hand him over to the others so they can explain more while you talk with our halfing friend about what she just did. We can guess now that she was working with these people at one point and then either turned against them or they betrayed her.

Honestly right now is not the time to worry about any of that you just need to find out what she just did and if she can teach you how to do it. We still want to escape but if we can free enough people it might give us more options.
No. 589021 ID: 2fd516

I guess it worked, but it also made him forget everything that happened while he was lightwashed.

Tell him to speak quietly, everyone present was kidnapped too. You're staging a jailbreak. Now that we can un-lightwash people we could even stay here and gather an army... actually no, I don't think that would work. They'd start patrolling the halls with groups, guards and the lightwashed included, and they'd be able to wreck us once they found us... unless we can get to the holding cells and fortify the entrances until we've un-lightwashed them all. So long as they don't have anyone that can pierce our defenses, we should be able to turn their own forces against them. Unfortunately it's quite likely that someone amongst the guards is going to be a powerful earth-manipulator as well, and will be able to just bore through any walls we put up.

We could just take the people we've got so far, and steal a boat to get to the mainland. Then we can tell the government of what's going on here, and they'll be able to send a force to take control over the island, or at least give us some assistance. On the other hand there are still 100 lightwashed elementalists in here, and that's enough to put up a huge fight. Many of them will likely die, along with a large chunk of the mundane fighters the government sends here.

There's a third option. We could take this small group, MAKE a room underground or otherwise find a hidden spot, then train there until everyone has a handle on their skills. At that point we dig back out and try to assassinate the leadership here. Once the flow of money stops, the guards will have no reason to continue helping out, and the threat will end.

Fourth option. We escape with this group, and train in safety with the government's help, which might even be able to find other magic-users in town. Then we lead a force of assassins back onto the island to take out the leaders.

I'm thinking we do that last option.
No. 589022 ID: 4b571b

>Are you responsible for this?! Answer me! I want to go home, do you know where we are?
I'm sorry, we're escaped prisoners, like yourself. I don't know where this island is, but if you want to return home, we'll help you. We're searching for a way out, ourselves.

My name is Abel. (Offer him your hand to help him up).

After you've gotten him reassured, and hopefully he introduces himself, make a point of thanking Alrauna for breaking the enchantment he was under.

...from her knowledge of how to counter the lightwash, and the way those guards talked to her before, it's possible she once worked with our captors. Until she either changed her mind, or they turned on her. But we're not going to make anything of that now. No matter what happened in the past, we found her in the same boat as us. And she's helping now, and we need that.
No. 589023 ID: 9ddf68

prisoners trying to escape and generally trying to help as many people as we can and be as big of a pain in the ass as we can to the people that brought us here. Also you're not out of the woods yet, we're still trapped here more or less so we still have to escape. Right now we're just trying to find the exit and smashing/stealing/freeing anything and everyone one we can along the way to slow these guys down as much as we can on the way out.
No. 589024 ID: 40935b

Work on untying those kids.

I'm Abel, she's Alrauna. Erwin, Becca and Walt are behind that wall. We were all kidnapped but we escaped before we got brainwashed. You didn't. We have no idea how much memory you've lost, the layout of this fortress, the number of guards, who's in charge, or a reliable way to get out.

Oh, and y'all are wizards. Hopefully that evens the odds.

There are about 100 'whitewashed' in this fortress, and they obey anyone who holds one of these stones unquestioningly. That means we can bring them back to the desert of the real and put a stop to or delay the boss' plans long enough to get outside help.
No. 589043 ID: 2f4b71

Check with Alrauna what she just did. Did she actually reverse the Lightwashing, or did she effectively order him to forget everything that happened after the Lightwashing (cancelling all previous orders but leaving him vulnerable to new ones)?
No. 589262 ID: 761017

>brought to this weird island
He was awake during the trip here?
Maybe he remembers what defenses he saw on the outside of this place!!!

Also, GO GET SOME GRUB, everyone is starving, and fighters deservet o fight on a full stomach!
Plus you can have satchels of water that the water elemym could carry with them!
No. 589657 ID: 0eaf76
File 140820970733.png - (44.43KB , 1100x900 , 38.png )

>Introduce yourselves.

You explain that everyone present are all jailbreaked prisoners, much like himself and briefly you manage to elaborate on who's running this operation and why. Of course, you didn't know all of the details yourself, but you knew a lot more than him. You and the others state your name and such, except for Alrauna who merely snorted at him and turned her head. The otter boy wrung his hands together, looking a bit overwhelmed at all of this. "My name's Oliver...so we've really been taken as prisoners from our own homes?" You nod. "W-Wow...I..." He rubbed his eyes furiously, uttering a few desperate sniffles. "That's a lot to t-take in..." Pulling Oliver in, you give him a consoling hug before handing him over to the others, to let them work things out. Turning around, you see that the two kids from before were gone. You assumed they promptly ran off after realizing it was safe... You pull Alrauna off to the side, prodding her about what it was she did back there. The halfling glanced at you with a raised eyebrow, hands crossed over her chest. "It was just a simple chant to release him. I might've also erased his memory in the process...but it was for his own good." She flicked her tail, turning her eyes away from you. "I'm hungry. We should locate the kitchen and fuel up before escaping. I know where the kitchen is, but who's to say that there aren't any guards in there right now. Guards have to eat too ya know." You return to Becca and the rest of them, gauging how hungry they were. Each of them nervously rubbed their stomachs, admitting they wouldn't mind eating.

>Find Kitchen.

Then it was settled. Food was now the main priority. Aside from the stale bread that you choked down in your cell, you don't recall ever eating anything before that, and the empty pocket in your stomach was beginning to bother you. Alrauna took the lead and you weaved back through the basement, locating the stairs. Once you were at ground level again the dragon girl sprinted down the now empty hallway, waving her arm. "Come on! The kitchen's just right down here!" Now that food was a likely prospect you could feel your mouth begin to water at the thought of having a decent meal. Your group round a corner and Alrauna was standing, waiting, in front of a pair of ordinary wooden doors. "I'm gonna go check to see if it's clear. If you hear crashing sounds and stuff...you should all probably run." She cracked open the door and slid inside, closing it gently behind her. You wait a few moments, your heart beginning to thump unexpectedly quick. After what felt like an hour her head popped right back out again, a playful grin on her face. "It's all clear, you guys can come on in." Everyone jumped at the news, flooding inside the kitchen. It was a pretty large room, with huge tables covered in various things used for cooking. Pots of flours, sugar and salt. Vegetables and fruit laying around in bowls or piles. You could spot sacs of potatoes lying against things on the ground, as well as pantries full of various ingredients as well. In the center of one of the counters, a huge dish of some sort of casserole sat, steaming, probably recently cooked. It smelled heavenly...you couldn't resist stepping towards it. Alrauna, on the other hand, didn't even hesitate before she was digging into it with her hands, shoving it all in her mouth. "H-Hey! Save some for the rest of us!" Becca shouted, and the others hurried over, grabbing whatever food they could to gobble down quickly. Becca ran over to you, handing you a fresh apple. "Here..! The...The casserole is already mostly gone...but there's still plenty left in here!"
No. 589664 ID: 4b571b

>Turning around, you see that the two kids from before were gone. You assumed they promptly ran off after realizing it was safe...
There's nowhere safe, here. Granted, the kids are safer on their own than delivered to their captors, but they're in danger as long as they're on this island. And they're alone. That's not a good thing.

>I might've also erased his memory in the process...but it was for his own good
Possibly she was controlled at some point, and hates the memories she has of it? Tried to spare him the same.

Or possibly she was once working with our captors, and Oliver knew. She erased his memory to cover her tracks.

...my position remains we don't give a damn if she was once one of them. She's not now, she's helped us so far, and we need her help now, past be damned.

...they're not smart enough to guess we'd come here and drugged this stuff, I hope.

Well, we need energy to escape and survive. Either we take the risk or we're lost, anyways.

Eat stuff that's good in the moment. Look for the things that keep longer, or can be stored or carried easily, and see about packing it in something. You don't know how long we'll go without reaching a kitchen again (wandering the fortress, or on the sea). You should pack what food you can.
No. 589671 ID: 2f4b71

Look for salted meats to grab, and take some of the bags of sugar. If there are waterskins, then those too. We need portable protein and energy while we're on the run.
No. 589676 ID: dc4b80

Wedge the doors closed with some small rock columns that you can remove later so you are not interrupted.

Then get some food and discuss what you should do next with the group. Alrauna seem like she is going to be tricky to work with. She most likely had something big to do with this whole mess. The fact that she knows light washing magic and how to mess with memories means she knows a lot about what is happening.

Maybe she was a mage specializing in crystal mind magic and she was hired on to teach people here. Then they betrayed her after they learned enough. Or she could have been one of the higher ups in the operation but someone turned on her.

Whatever her involvement was we need to get her to trust us so she opens up. Getting out of here is going to be tricky and if she runs off into the night the second we get away we will not be able to easily save the people here.
No. 589686 ID: 918b96

Don't take the apple. I've read too many fairy tales.
No. 589692 ID: 2fd516

Hey, everyone should be a little quieter. Also, see if you can find some satchels or other wearable containers to carry some extra food around after this.

Also, if we've got some downtime now, perhaps the newcomer should see if he can use any of his powers?
No. 589697 ID: 9ddf68

...how did she know where this was, why is there freshly made food on the table with no guards around, how long was she gone, did she cook this?

There's a lot of questions I'm seeing here
No. 589748 ID: e3aff6

>...my position remains we don't give a damn if she was once one of them. She's not now, she's helped us so far, and we need her help now, past be damned.
Generally agreed. There will be a time for questions after we have escaped or wrecked this place, but in the meanwhile she is quite definitely against our enemy, considering how they wanted to lightwash her (and that being a ruse would be a really elaborate and tenuous conspiracy).
No. 590413 ID: 0eaf76
File 140859283366.png - (40.40KB , 1100x900 , 39.png )

You make sure to block the kitchen door with a few stone pillars, allowing yourself to concentrate on roaming the area safely. First things first, you needed supplies. Supplies that could last, supplies that you could carry. You sniff around for any sort of sack or purse, something to carry anything in. Your pants had pockets, but that wouldn't be enough to survive... Grabbing a sturdy chopping knife, you swiped an empty potato sack and sat down to carve at it. You could easily create a makeshift shoulder bag out of it! The potato sack was made from durable fibers as well, so it would be able to survive much longer than something more fragile. Once you cut out arm holes, you dropped a few apples inside, then a few potatoes. Salted meats were next, dried fruits, nuts, even water canteens were stored in there, it was surprisingly big for a potato sack. The entire time, you kept your eyes steadily locked on Alrauna, who was still sniffing around for more food. What relationship did she have with this place anyways? It was clear she had a history...that much was certain. Of course, she was helping you now, and causing her to dislike you was the last thing you wanted right now. The halfling turned to you, eyes wide, but stoic. She approached you, standing above your crouched figure.

"Abel." You respond with a steady nod. "Can I ask you something?" Again, you simply bob your head up and down. Alrauna crouched beside you, hands clasped on her knees, her figure appeared to be trembling. "...C-Can I be honest with you?" You swallow down the weird knot in your throat, you had no idea why your stomach felt so warm... "You're really...um, well what's the word..." She sucked in a breath, not speaking for a few moments. "I might as well spill this while the others are distracted..." Her eyes locked squarely onto yours, you could feel your heart fluctuate at the mere intensity of her gaze. "I...should thank you. For what you did back there..." She exhaled, clutching her chest. "I know that right now, you probably have no idea why seeing those two get crushed like that...makes me feel so happy...but I think that you're--" "Hey! Abel!" Alrauna was cut off abruptly, Oliver waving at you enthusiastically. The halfling shriveled back, lips pressing together in a thin line. "Anyways, thank you..." She muttered, before standing up to eat some more. You rub your neck with a tired sigh, standing up to walk over to the otter boy. Oliver pointed to a piece of paper laid out on the counter. "I think we found a map of the place...! It's kinda scratched up but...it should lead us around places in the mansion!" You look down at the stained sheet of parchment with curious eyes.
No. 590417 ID: 9ddf68

well we're near the stairs so there's that at least.

From what I'm seeing we can either try to get out via stairs, we can try to check out the observation room and see if we can't get a good look of this place to get a better idea where to go, we can try to go through the communal chamber and either go down through there (might have less traffic then the main stairs) or see if we can't loot some nice things from the vault... although from what I see if we head towards the vault we might get trapped... and thinking about THAT I realize we can simply make a big fucking hole in the wall to make an improvised exit should the need arise.
No. 590421 ID: 2fd516

Oh man I think she's got the HOTS for you.

Hmm, that scratch... that likely reads "specialty jail", like, a jail for earth-users. Let's bore through the wall to Storage. See if we can get some equipment from there.
No. 590425 ID: 761017

>"Can I ask you something?"
>"...C-Can I be honest with you?"
>"You're really...um, well what's the word..."
>"I might as well spill this while the others are distracted..."
>"I...should thank you. For what you did back there..."
>"I know that right now, you probably have no idea why seeing those two get crushed like that...makes me feel so happy...but I think that you're--"

"...Acting like a dragon?"

I mean, cmon, the girl probably has the natural hots for dragonlike behavior!
i.e. crushing enemies with impunity and efficiency, calmly and authoritatively executing intelligent commands, passing on necessary wisdom and asking intelligent questions, coming up with detailed theories and strategic behaviors on the fly...
No. 590430 ID: b651f5

I think now might be a time to meet with the group and discuss long-term plans. Supposing we do get out, then what? Unless Alrauna has some dragon friends who would help, we are quite possibly the best hope for putting and end to this organization. Assuming we get back to our home nations and convince them of the threat, they would only be able to respond in the form of a non-magic army trying to invade a fortress of elyms by sea, which seems like it would have some serious trouble*. Their lightwashed elyms have firepower but relatively low numbers and poor organization, so a group of sneaky elyms who are already on the island might actually be more of a threat to them than an open attack from a mundane military.

*Unless they have a higher tech level than what we have seen so far suggests, they will at best have catapults small enough to fit onto ships, so fortifications manned by elyms will most likely have them outgunned.
No. 590431 ID: 436cdc

A tsun so powerful...
Anyhow, wave her over when he's done. Let her know she's been a pleasure too, and assure her that whatever relation she had to this place she had we wont hold it against her. She IS on our side now, and as long as that remains true there isn't any reason to pester about it.
No. 590440 ID: 2fd516

Also don't forget to shove something in your face before we go.
No. 590454 ID: 487455

Well, whatever her past, it looks like you earned her trust, at least. That's good. We need that.

Well, that helps. Question is where we go. Observatory might be able to tell us which direction land is in, when we finally steal a boat or something. Vaults or storage could have more useful supplies. Ward could have reinforcements. Specialty cell could have prisoners too hard to contain in other cells?

Problem is we don't know where guards are, or how long we have. Eventually someone will check this room and find it sealed...
No. 590625 ID: 2fd516

Oh, one other thing. See if you can find some jugs or other containers for water that the water-users can carry, so that they have water available at all times. Also, for drinking.
No. 590758 ID: 2f4b71

Worth checking out. It could just mean 'observation room', but if it's actually an astronomical observatory, then that may be an easy route to the surface.
No. 590978 ID: 0eaf76
File 140890113250.png - (43.26KB , 1100x900 , 40.png )

>Head towards Observatory.

Pondering what course of action to take, you bite into a slightly bruised apple, stopping to pause. The juice and overall sweetness of the apple made you a bit emotional. It reminded you of home, of your family. You rub your eyelids, groaning out. Oliver looked a bit concerned. "Are you ok, Abel?" You simply wave him off. Your bout of nostalgia would have to wait for another time. Gathering around the entire group, you explain your strategy. Cut through the storage room, salvage supplies, go to the observatory, find out what you can and finally crack into the vault. They all nodded hesitantly, no doubt afraid to go back out where they were vulnerable. Alrauna shook her head, folding up the map. "The observatory and the vault are both very dangerous at this point. Now that everyone's realized we've escaped they'll most likely turn the place upside down..." You ask what she would do then. "Hit the storage room, and stay there for the night. It's a big room, and there are plenty of hiding spots there, so we won't get caught. From there we can probably find a way out..." Becca narrowed her eyes, wings tucking in close to her back.

"Alrauna...how do you know all of this? Do you have some sort of connection with these guys?" The halfling puckered her lips together, freezing. "...Y-Yes. I have...been through this before...but I'm on your side." assured Alrauna. "I want to help you, I swear." The others seemed uneasy at Alrauna's confession, but you put your hands up, persuading them to participate. Walt, chewing on a stick of dried fruit, decided to speak up. He was usually the quietest one... "Hey, I don't think I'm the only one thinking about this, and I know our main goal is to escape this place...but we need to stop these people. I want to go home just as bad as the next person, but wouldn't it be irresponsible to just leave without doing anything to shut this place down? It will come back to haunt us if we don't do anything...I...I think we should stay and try and stop them." Everyone fell quiet for a bit, even you. It's true, you did want to leave and go straight home, that was the priority from the start...but Walt brought up a good point.

"But we're too weak right now, we barely know how to use our powers..." Erwin mumbled, staring at his hands solemnly. Alrauna suddenly clapped her palms, startling you. "We should find an underwater cavern...there are plenty around this island, and most of them are extremely hard to find. I only know of a few...If we manage to get in one with enough supplies...we could stay there for maybe a day or so to practice our powers. Of course we should go to the storage room first, but after that..." While you consider this proposition you shuffle over towards a tub of lukewarm water in the corner of the kitchen, dipping the water canteen in to fill it up. Screwing the cap on, you let out a sigh.

>Go to underwater cavern and train.
No. 590980 ID: 2fd516

Storage room, then water cavern. Sure.

Oh, one other thing. We passed a whitewashed person on the way through these corridors. Do we have time to go cure her, and take her with us?
No. 590982 ID: 487455

>I want to go home just as bad as the next person, but wouldn't it be irresponsible to just leave without doing anything to shut this place down?
We've been shooting for escape, since it's the easier and more attainable goal. But yeah, if there's a way we can shut this place down, we really should.

>Oh, one other thing. We passed a whitewashed person on the way through these corridors. Do we have time to go cure her, and take her with us?
Maybe, if any crystal will work. We're out of luck if we'd need to find her specific crystal.

...and it depends on how high the alert is. She might have been moved from standby to hunting us.
No. 590983 ID: bb78f2

Can't we just find some of the leaders of this movement and kill them when they show their weaknesses? Most of the people we've faced were just mooks. Without the leaders pushing them around with wealth and other things, the main danger, the mooks, will disperse. Spits and his ilk ain't gonna do this shit without a paycheck, he ain't no warlord or master planner. Most of the leaders funding this operation are probably weak bastards with a good guard force, at most, but they're probably not expecting get offed so there'll definitely be weaknesses in the guard for the first few kills, or none at all if we can get to them quick enough.

Alrauna, since you seem to know some of these guys, who are the key targets of this movement? Listen, if you worked with these people before for the same goals, we don't really give a shit right now because you're down here and your change of allegiance honestly just makes you a more valuable member of the group. We'd really just like to know. Just don't start up another operation like this with you at the head or we'll take you down just like the rest, and we mean that in a respectful manner. Don't give a shit if you were like Spits before, because now you're down here with us, freeing some slaves and making names and that's what matters for now, at least until you might betray us because then you want to enslave everyone for yourself after they're all gone, which won't work, just to remind you.
No. 590984 ID: 40935b

loot the storage room, but remember- if the observatory and vault are under guard, they could easily enter the storage room.
No. 591010 ID: dc4b80

I sort of like the underwater cavern plan. Even if we are going to just escape it would be good to have a handle on everyone's powers before making a break for it.

Also we need to figure out what is up with Alrauna before it blows up in our face. If she knows how to erase memories with the light magic who knows what the creepy staff lady can do. And we need to come to terms with however she was involved in all of this. Even if she only tells you her secrets its important to know whats really going on.

So grab some food and clean up after yourselves. The longer it takes them to realize you raided the kitchen the better. Then have Alrauna show you on the map where these caves are.
No. 591233 ID: 17c4bc

Speaking of assassinating leaders, this "council room" sounds like a tempting target. Especially if we can find a way to surprise-kill everyone inside from outside the room, while the council is in session.
No. 591274 ID: ccd544

That's easily done by using earth powers to GARBAGE COMPACT the council room!
No. 600315 ID: 0eaf76
File 141506703615.png - (46.96KB , 1100x900 , 41.png )

>"Alrauna, since you seem to know some of these guys, who are the key targets of this movement?"

Before you were going to go anywhere, you wanted to know the truth about Alrauna. She had a history with the place, and obviously knew people here...but how? Everyone's eyes zoned in on the halfling, waiting for some sort of answer. "To be perfectly honest, I'm not sure. The most I know is someone named Ringu. He apparently was in charge of finding the crystals...and he knows the most about them. But he's the highest person I can think of."

>What exactly is your history with the place?"

Alrauna pulled her wings in tighter, going silent. She stared at the floor for a good long while before turning back up to make eye contact with you. "There will be a time and a place where I will tell you, but not know. All you need to know is that I used to know them, and now I'm fighting them. I'm on your side. That's all you should concern yourself with." She looked offended at your questions, turning her nose up begrudgingly. Becca folded her arms up, snorting. "That's all fine, but don't expect us to try and save you if you're stuck in a bad situation." Erwin placed a hand on the bat's shoulder. "Don't yell, Becca...I'm sure she has her reasons..." The room felt tense...you could probably cut butter with how sharp the room felt.

"Anyways, let's head to the storage room. The water caverns aren't shown on this map, but I know how to get down there." Alrauna grabbed the map, folding it up and shoving it into your shoulder bag. "Give me the bag." She commanded. You stand there silent before sliding the potato bag off to hand over to her. "I'll hold onto it." Erwin and Oliver were already trying to grab a few more pieces of food in the kitchen to store, just small things though.

>Go to storage room.

Your group of misfits quietly snuck out of the kitchen, using the connected hallways to sneak into the storage area. Essentially, it was a large, empty gray room made out of stone brick covered in some sort of...paint? It didn't look like paint, but it smelled like paint. The room was filled with various boxes, shelves, crates and carts full of things ranging from books, statues, globes, scrolls, clothes and even non-perishable food. "Do you think we could find a crystal or even a weapon in here?" Becca wondered out loud. "They wouldn't keep crystals in here...but maybe something like a sword could be buried here." Alrauna suggested. Everyone began to split up, to go dumpster diving.
No. 600316 ID: 0eaf76
File 141506705392.png - (35.93KB , 1100x900 , 42.png )

You step around the cluttered mess, looking around for stuff. Something begins to catch your eye, though, and you kneel down to dig it out. It was a tiny box, covered in gems and intricate designs. The wood was charred, making the tiny words written on it unreadable. The outside could be described as ugly. Unhooking the latch, you push the lid open. A tiny dragon was stored inside, and it began to spin around on a platform. A quiet song started to play. It sounded like a quiet lullaby, playing slowly, each note straining to be heard. A hand snatched the box away from you suddenly, and a voice began to shout at you. "Where did you find this?!" Alrauna screamed, holding it close to her chest. Everyone looked up to see why the halfling was yelling.

>"It was just lying around! It looked interesting so I--"

"Where did they get this...?" She whispered, stroking the lid affectionately. "...Tch..." She closed it abruptly, stopping its melody in its tracks. "Keep looking for something useful." She scoffed, and clambered away. What a strange reaction...well, it's time for a bit of dumpster diving.

Look for,

No. 600317 ID: bb78f2

What, you can't look for all of it? There's for of you. Dig it all out son!

But maybe prioritize food and books. You guys need to get your strength up, and maybe read up. What good is a sword compared to your POWER!

And who needs clothes? If we have to, we can go buff, who cares! We're escaping!
No. 600326 ID: 2fd516

If you're gonna be training underground for a while, you need food. On the other hand, you've already got some from the kitchen...
1. Weapons
2. Food
3. Books
4. Clothing
No. 600328 ID: 9ddf68

find what you can but I think food is the most useful right now. Since you guys are planning to learn how to use your powers more anyways weapons aren't as needed, still useful but I'm not sure how well any of you know how to use them should you find them.

Books would be second on the list since they might have something useful

Clothes aren't needed but the might boast moral if you guys have something other then rags... or in Alrauna's case no clothes at all.

Weapons should be along the same point as clothes. They're more useful and probably would make you guys feel more comfortable if nothing else but I don't know if any of you actually know how to use them and when facing people who have powers I don't know how useful they'll be.
No. 600344 ID: dd8e0b

>What a strange reaction..
It's a sentimental one. She wasn't expecting that object to be here, and it affected here.

Geeze, we're going to have to work on rebuilding trust with her later. This is exactly why I didn't want to push the issue of her past yet.

>what search for
Prioritize things we can't reproduce. You can make weapons with elemental powers, with training and time (applied earth magic, maybe in conjunction with fire if we start forging metal alloys). You can secure food sources with probably less work than that (tunnel through rock to the waterline, use water powers to collect fish?). Books are knowledge though, you'd be hard pressed to reproduce that in short time.

So priorities go:

1) Books
2) Food
3) Weapons
No. 600354 ID: 01745f

1. Books (if journals or books about elyms)
2. Food
3. Weapons
4. Clothes

>Music box in junk room
Perhaps she has lived here longer than the brainwashers.
No. 600405 ID: 0eaf76
File 141515891801.png - (40.09KB , 1100x900 , 43.png )

>Food and Books.

You decide your time will be best spent scrounging for food or any sort of book, whether it be a journal or a novel. You order Becca and Erwin to look for clothing, while Walt and Oliver can search for weapons. Alrauna volunteered to search for food items. Finding something useful in this giant heap will prove to be a challenge. Everyone began to dig around at once, throwing away useless items. "There's so much junk in here...!" Becca commented, tossing a plastic bowl behind her shoulder. "None of it is stuff we can use..." Erwin pulled out a long feather boa, frowning. "Where do they even get all this...?" You persist on trying to look for the things you need. Locating a small bookshelf, you move in to browse through the selection. You find several dictionaries, romance novels, even manuals for various objects, but nothing really worth reading. Suddenly, a large, leatherbound book catches your eye. On the front, the old-looking text reads: "The Elymem People". This could definitely come in handy. Despite the fact that it's heavy, you store it in your bag anyways. Along with that, you find several journals written by anonymous people, but just by flipping through the book you can tell it has useful information relating to your current situation.

Alrauna got up from the far corner, holding cans of food in her arms. "We should try and find more bags to carry stuff in as well. I'm sure we'll most likely be safe if we spend the night here...but we just need to find little areas in the room to hide out in, just in case someone pops in real fast." She suggested, clambering down to meet up with you. "I found some stuff...made a little pile in the corner over there. Did you find anything?" You show Alrauna the books that you scavenged, and she gets a suspicious look on her face. "Mmm, I wonder what those journals are about. I'm not much of a reader so you can take care of that." Deciding to take your time, you hunker down in a sort of isolated spot behind a large dresser, leaning up against the backside. Which book should you read first?

>"The Elymem People"

>Journal titled, "Altius"

>Journal titled, "My Message to Future Prisoners"
No. 600407 ID: 2fd516

"My Message to Future Prisoners" sounds pretty seriously important.
No. 600411 ID: 9ddf68

>Journal titled, "My Message to Future Prisoners"
...ok this sounds just a little bit to convenient. Also if I had to guess most of this junk is probably the prisoners personal items they had on them when they were grabbed. I mean I bet you didn't come to this island with those rags on.
No. 600457 ID: dd8e0b

Just remember that all books, especially journals, have authors. And those authors have agendas and motives and perspectives. There may be useful information in these books, but you can't trust it implicitly.

The "Message to future prisoners" is the most suspect. Yes, it might help, but whoever wrote it is obviously trying to influence you. Read it with a grain of salt. (And if you discuss it with the others, report what the book claims, don't present it as fact).

I'd start with either the message or the elymen book.
No. 600553 ID: 0eaf76
File 141525729124.png - (41.64KB , 1100x900 , 44.png )

>"A Message to Future Prisoners"

This journal catches your eye in particular. It seems too good to be true, but it's your best bet at finding something informative. Cracking open the cover, you notice a barrage of various stains on all of the pages. They were a deep, brown color...coffee? No, coffee wasn't this thick...this was...blood. You flip to the first page, brashly titled "1".

"I'm writing this journal in hopes that one day...someone will find it. Maybe it'll get tossed, maybe it'll get burned, but hope is the last thing I can rely on at this point. My name is Harliman. I have been captured by the Order to serve under their command. Currently, I am being stored in a huge jail cell...I only have this journal and a makeshift pencil to communicate with the future. If you have been taken by the Order, do not fear..."

You skim past the information that isn't necessarily urgent to read. Something about 'escape is possible' and 'they're an evil organization set to take over the world'.

"...It's important to note the crystals used to enslave your mind. They come from the fifth district...Altius. The district of the Other World. A world comprised of the souls and spiritual magic of living things. They can be used to enhance your own spirit, but...they're being used to steal people's spirit instead. The only way to break someone free, is if you recite a special chant that releases their spirit, or by sacrificing someone else's essence instead..."

Was that the chant that Alrauna used earlier? Is she linked with this fifth district somehow? You look over to the middle of the storage chamber. Oliver, Becca and Erwin were gathered around a small lamp, eating canned beans and chatting with each other. This was nice...to find the fragments of peace. To be able to sit around and talk casually...of course, you're most likely unable to find peace again after all of this. Alas, you continue reading.

"...find Ringu. While he does work with them, he does not believe in their values or beliefs. With a bit of persuading...he could be used against them. He is a native from Altius, a spiritual being that can locate Altering Gems, the gems used to steal souls. If you can find Ringu you can find the leader...take out the leader, and everything will fall into place..."

Closing the journal, you let out a quiet sigh and lean back against the dresser. You wanted to go back home...see your family again. You wonder if they even missed you.

"...Abel?" You hear Becca's voice call out from beside you. She stared down at you, a worried look on her face. "Do you want anything to eat?"

"I'm not real hungry, Becca..." You mutter, straightening yourself out a bit. She sat down next to you, wings folded in. "Hey, don't worry, ok? We'll get through this. We're pretty strong, heh. Even those dogs weren't a match for us!" With an enthusiastic smile, she flexed her arms jokingly. "Hey, wanna try on some clothes? I picked out a few outfits for everyone."

>Try on clothes.

>Eat food.

>Read more books.
No. 600555 ID: 2fd516

>Try on clothes.

Is it paperdoll time maybe? Ask Becca about herself. Does she have any family at home? She seems like she's been fighting with Alrauna a bit- does she remind her of someone she doesn't like? (or maybe it's a competition thing?)
No. 600618 ID: 9ddf68

>Read more books
we can try some clothes on when we find a new hide out, but whatever information is in these books we found could help us greatly and the sooner we know the sooner we can use that information.
No. 600620 ID: bb78f2

Eat some food you dork, I bet you're high on adrenaline and can't feel the weakness in your body. Who knows what using magic does to your body, get some food in you before you collapse.

You can eat and do the other things man, learn to multitask. Read a book, take a bite every once in a while.
No. 600645 ID: dd8e0b

She made the effort to pick things out for you, you might as well try them on.

Don't lose the reaming books, though. If we don't get the chance to read them now, we'll want to later.
No. 600839 ID: 0eaf76
File 141550847538.png - (45.88KB , 1100x900 , 45.png )

You decide that trying on Becca’s outfit wouldn’t do that much harm. You could continue reading once she was finished showing off her new collection of clothes. “Alright, change into these, okay?” The bat tosses you a set of clothes. They definitely felt...cleaner. They weren’t torn up and ratty like your current clothes. Finding a quiet hiding spot, you quickly change into whatever she gave you. It was a spiffy outfit, wasn’t it? Mostly tan with red accents to it. Slender, yet loose pants that went down to your feet, as well as a stylish, long-sleeved top with a dark, red jacket to go with it. Very nice!

“Thanks, Becca. It feels a lot better than what I was wearing before.” You comment, stepping out to show off for her. She clapped her hands together, a huge smile on her face. “Wow! That’s great! I can’t wait to show everyone else their outfits...hey, take this as my token of gratitude for breaking me out of my cell, okay Abel?” Becca stood up on her feet, walking off in the other direction. “Erwin! Get over here!”

You pick up your books again and flip back to whatever you were reading. Ringu, huh? He was the one who brought the soul-stealing crystals here in the first place. If he didn’t believe in the Order’s beliefs then why does he cooperate? Why not revolt? It just didn’t make sense.

”...I hear that the Order has recently captured a Dragon halfling. I can hear it screaming at night. Whatever’s happening to it must not be very good. Dragons are noble creatures...the worst thing you can do is lock them up in an isolated place. I thought Dragons were extinct...but I saw it with my own eyes. A real Dragon. The only explanation is if it were a Halfling. Halflings can change their form at will, according to legends. I wonder how the Order managed to capture one…”

This was obviously referring to Alrauna. How old was this book? How long has she been here? So many questions...so little time. You try and find another informational section in the journal, but your reading was halted when you heard the door to the Storage Room swing open, a scream resounding just a few moments later.
No. 600840 ID: 0eaf76
File 141550849463.png - (56.66KB , 1100x900 , 46.png )

“I FOUND THEM. THEY’RE IN HERE!” You then hear a string of curse words come from Becca, Oliver and Alrauna. They all ran towards you, grabbing your arm to lift you up. Turning to the doorway, you see Spit, the rat from before, pointing at you. A handful of guards spilled forth before too long.

“So you thought you could get away, eh? HAHAHA! We’ll always find you, no matter what...I see you smuggled a bit of our food, too! That’s a DOUBLE DEATH PENALTY.” He waved his hands and two massive guards rushed at you full speed. Were they at the only entrance? You couldn't tell. With a quick scan of the room you see no other doors that you could escape with. Walt shot a stone shield up from the ground, the guards slamming into it head-on. "Abel we need to do something!" Becca shouted. Spit just laughed maniacally. "You have no where to hide! But you know what? I have a proposition to make..." He eyed you over before pointing to Alrauna, who was standing at your left side. "If you give me the halfling...I'll release you! You'll be free to go back home as you wish~ 5 Elymems are easily worth the price of a dragon. Besides, I doubt you’d be much use to us anyways, given you have no idea how to even USE your powers, tch. So what do you say?" Alrauna stared up at you cautiously, narrowing her eyes.
No. 600841 ID: bb3cfd

Wait. No idea how to use your powers? Is he ignorant of your previous destructive displays, or is there more to you than you know?

Scoff, and show him what you've learned. Slam pillars of rock into the guards to knock them away/out. Then erect a wall to keep them away. As for Spit, I think you'd better restrain him then ask him if he's changed his mind about you now. If he still acts like you don't know how to use your "powers" then... break a limb and ask him for more details. Ask if Alrauna wants this one dead, too.

To escape, enact Alrauna's plan of hiding underground. However, nobody can witness it, so be sure you at least block the sight of Spit and the guards before you go under, and reform the ground after yourself so that they can't tell you went down. Optimally we want them to think you just went through a wall and are somewhere else in the fort.
No. 600842 ID: a19cd5

Laugh in his face.
"Wow, no. You are really bad at negotiating, buddy. She's the only person making this escape possible, and you don't exactly give us a lot of reason to buy into your manure salesmanship."
Then proceed to hit him with rocks, fire, and whatever else goofy-ass Avatar shit we can toss his way.

We got superpowers, dammit, let's get CREATIVE with the things!
No. 600843 ID: 66354b

Agree to his terms.

Then when his face lights up, send a rock flying towards it at top speed.
No. 600845 ID: 01745f

Betray an ally for a slaver's promise? Rat man tells a tasteless joke.

Its time to rumble, by which I mean literally shake and contort the ground beneath their feet to knock them over.
No. 600848 ID: d90668

If you can seal up the tunnel behind them do so now.

Blocking reinforcements is your priority. After that can deal with the guards.
No. 600849 ID: d3be40

No negotiations.
No insults.
No showing off.

Abel, start running, or fight. No powers - you want to keep as many enemies in the dark about yourselves as possible.

You should probably run, one of your squad might not realize that using powers this early in the escape is a good way to get analyzed to death by the overseers.
No. 600850 ID: dd8e0b

Actually... bluffing him for the tactical advantage isn't such a bad idea.

Although it's only worth it if you can make sure Alrauna knows what you're doing. Like if you stand in front of your allies and make a point of crossing your fingers behind your back. Or if you're in a position to wink at her and he can't see (depends on how and where you're standing). Otherwise, the long term penalty of alienating her isn't worth the short term advantage of surprise.

Either way, though, you need to take these guys down, hard and fast. ...spear sharp earth strait up through their feet, and then immediately have the spears spread out and turn to bonds.

If the exit to the room is open, we take it. If not, you collapse it, and then we make ourselves a new one elsewhere.
No. 600851 ID: a19cd5

no point in ace-sleeving here, man. Regardless of how it goes down eventually we'll need to make a wall or something to get away and they'll know anyhow.
Best to take them by surprise and just demolish them so they can't spread the word.
Hesitant to kill, of course, but we can probably immobilize them.
No. 600877 ID: f86d3b

I like this no-nonsense approach. No banter, that's the villain's job.
No. 600885 ID: 2f4b71

Begin forming stalactites above them as you talk. Nobody ever looks up.
No. 600897 ID: bb78f2

Sink all three of them into the floor.
Let's not even bother anymore with these shits.
No. 600900 ID: 0eaf76
File 141555278989.png - (54.05KB , 1100x900 , 47.png )

You slam your palms onto the ground, concentrating hard to block the three of them off from the entrance. A stone wall erupted from the ground behind them, causing the two guards to get nervous looks on their faces. Spit just scowled at you. “So we’re going to do this? Hmm…” As he stood there, pondering his next course of action, you try and form spears of stalactites above the guards and the rat man. Then, clenching your fists, you force the daggers on the ceiling to plummet down onto them. Spit dove out of the way, the two guards getting impaled by the other stones. They fell to the ground, killed instantly from a stalactite to the head. You could hear Becca gagging beside you, turning away to cover her mouth. The others didn’t look too hot either…
Alrauna, on the other hand, just stood there, watching. “Don’t be careless, Abel…” She whispered, watching Spit as he rose to his feet.

“Ah, well that’s unfortunate. They’re merely cattle, anyways, not like they’re going to be missed by anyone.” He wiped his mouth with the back of his hand and straightened the scarf around his neck. “Abel, there’s a significant difference to having powers, and using powers. You’ve only just recently discovered you have powers...but do you know how to keep them in check?”

What did that mean? You didn’t care. You just wanted him dead. No bullshit, just fight it out until one of you can’t go on anymore. Keeping your palms planted against the ground, you try and shoot the ground up to either stab or wrap his feet up, so he can’t move. However, with the amount of clutter in the room, you couldn’t quite get the Earth to move up as fast as you’d like. The ground merely wobbled a bit, before a large lump of dirt rose up underneath the rat, simply making Spit rise higher. “Mmm, how sad. Didn’t quite take into account the amount of shit this room has, eh?” The rat jumped from his platform, twisting his body around as if he were making some sort of gesture. You suddenly feel yourself fly backwards, slamming into the wall at an alarming speed. The breath fled from your lungs and you fell to the ground, sputtering and curling into a ball. You don’t think you broke your spine...but that definitely did not feel good.

“Do you really think they’d employ MORTALS to work for the Order?! HAHAHAHA!” Wind spun around him like a tornado, causing a gust to form inside of the room. A Wind Elymem? You needed to get the others to fight, but how?! None of them knew how to use their powers quite to your degree, and they didn’t really look up for fighting...they mostly just looked like they wanted to run. So be it. Using what energy you could, you erect a huge wall in front of Spit, one large enough that he couldn’t get around it. The menagerie of crap that was in the way either got pushed to the side, or was crushed against the ceiling.
No. 600901 ID: 0eaf76
File 141555280656.png - (51.69KB , 1100x900 , 48.png )

“Alrauna, wh-where’s the, ack...u-underwater cave…” You gasp out, holding onto your back as you try to rise to your feet. The halfling ran towards the back of the room, pushing aside a large dresser to reveal a small door that went into the ground. “This is it. I’m surprised no one has tried to really seal it off...but I used this to escape once before.” She pulled open the door, motioning for people to go inside. There was a deep, dimly lit staircase that led down into some sort of chasm. You felt uneasy, but this was really your only chance.


No. 600902 ID: d90668

Ask the group.

I know what just happened was messy and most of you have little grasp on your powers. When I woke up today I was not expecting to be killing people with shards of rock before dinner time.

But if we falter here the mind controlled shells of our bodies will be doing much worse soon enough. With us stuck inside them watching as it happens.

So do we run and hope they do not find us for a few hours? Or do you help me fight Spit? This could be our best chance to take him down. Right now he is alone and locked in a stone room. Next time he will not be so careless.

I do not even like the idea of killing him honestly. While he could just be a horrible person who knows if he has been twisted this way by whoever runs this place. But if we could at least knock him out maybe Alrauna could help us figure out a non lethal solution.
No. 600904 ID: bb78f2

I'd like to kill the smug fuck. And I have no objections to it.
Between you and Alruna, you SHOULD be able to catch him off guard. Something tells me the leader will also be like you and Spits and not easy.

I'm worried about taking that tunnel, if they haven't removed it, they have guards at the other end.

Think you can pull another double kill or even triple? You only have to fight Spits once and win. Who knows what's down that tunnel now?
No. 600917 ID: 07a835

Run. Close the doorway behind you with a wall of stone.

As for keeping your powers in check, can't you just, like... wear shoes, and not touch any of the stone?
No. 600926 ID: dd8e0b

>Spit dove out of the way
...next time we try to drop the roof on someone, it's not going to be stone daggers. We're going to crush them with a giant slab of stone too large to dodge out from under.

>but do you know how to keep them in check?
Does he mean how to keep your own powers in check, or those of another? (Since you need to touch rock, you could be kept in check by knocking you away with wind. Which is what he did). Either way, something to look up in the Elymem book, later (assuming we kept the books with us).

>Run or fight
You might be able to win a fight by virtue of superior numbers, but he's got a lot more skill. If we choose to fight here, I don't see us getting through without taking casualties.

Tactical retreat. You need to get your allies trained up, and prepared. Not through them into a slaughter.

Or... if we did fight, we'd need to coordinate. Becca closes her eyes and focuses on interference- trying to counter or stop what he does with wind, while the others try to occupy him from enough directions that you can take him out.

The big problem is, if we run, can we be followed? If this is the only passage out of the room, they'll look, and find it. Even if you use earth magic to seal it off. Which might mean our choice is fighting one person now, or fighting several a little later.
No. 601148 ID: 01745f

I am tempted to try and simply compress the stone box he is currently in, but my other instincts tell me you just can't rely on a slow moving death trap to kill an unseen target, and once he gets out of there we are not likely to be able to take him.

Does the tunnel curve or have bends in it? If there is we should consider waiting around a bend listening for pursuit while the others check the tunnel exit (if it isn't too long). If we can get the drop on him in a tunnel that narrow he won't have anywhere to dodge to if we squeeze the walls on him.

If not, we should just retreat down the tunnel and seal its entrance off. An ambush at the other end is a significant worry, but it is a risk we will need to take.

...Next chance we get we need to read the Elym book. As well as knowing whether we will have power control issues, we need to know whether we can expect the others to reach our power level on a workable time frame or whether they will stay fairly low power like the guards.
No. 601386 ID: 0eaf76
File 141567919074.png - (51.51KB , 1100x900 , 49.png )

>Tactical retreat.

As much as you'd like to kill him right now, you seriously doubted you'd get out of the fight without any casualties. You're willing to risk the possibility of a more difficult fight later, than lose a few of your men right now. "Let's just get out. I can't fight him! There's nothing for me to manipulate at all! I don't want to use my drinking water for it, either..." Erwin whined out, clutching onto his shirt. You rubbed your eyes, finally speaking up. "Fine, we'll leave through the tunnel, then. We'll train up and try to fight them later. I'd like to take the rat out right now but...I see how shaken up you all are." They all agreed with you nervously. Oliver raised a hand to speak. "Yeah, I'm not real sure how to use my powers either..."

You ushered the others into the doorway, making sure they're all in before grabbing a torch and closing off the entryway with the dresser to cover up the tunnel and ejecting a stone wall to add protection. Alrauna nodded at you politely before running off down the tunnel, as if she respected your decision.

>Any twists and turns in the tunnel?

It was mostly just a straight shot down. From the looks of things it seemed pretty deep...you really couldn't see the bottom. As you descended into the underground, all you could hear were the footsteps that padded against the cold staircase. The air was especially muggy and humid. You tugged at your jacket, feeling a bit warm. You were positioned in the front of the group, Alrauna trailing behind you. From the top, a loud banging could be heard, but it was a pretty dull sound. You hoped that your wall hid you well enough to let you get to safety.

At the very bottom of the staircase, you encounter a body of deep water. "How deep is that?" Oliver questions. "It looks pretty deep...", replies Erwin. You ponder to yourself. Everything in your bag needed to stay dry, books, food and whatnot. "Oliver, Erwin, can you possibly manipulate the water?" You suggest. Oliver just looks at you with a startled expression. "I mean...I don’t know if I can...you mean like push it to the sides?”

Alrauna stepped forward, splashing her hand in the water. "I'm pretty sure it's shallow enough so that we can hold our bags over our heads." She set her own pouch on the ground and stepped into the water. It reached up to about her stomach, stopping there. "See? It's fine. We can just-- agh!" Instantly, the halfling was dragged under the water. She flailed her arm and screamed out before disappearing underneath the surface. “Alrauna!” Erwin screamed out, peering over the edge of the platform. “A-Abel what do we do?!”

>Dive in.

>Stay on ground and wait.
No. 601387 ID: 07a835

Drop your bag and get in there. You can still manipulate earth underwater if you stay near the floor or walls to touch them.

Once you get Alrauna out, you can make a bridge over the water so nobody has to risk getting caught by whatever is in there.
No. 601425 ID: 01745f

Don't go into the water hoping to reach the bottom; make the bottom come to you.
Tell the others to grab your bag and hold onto to you (in case the water tries to grab you) and then reach down through the ledge you are on to lift the portion of the floor under her upwards until it is above the water level.
No. 601466 ID: 7c58ae

>Alrauna nodded at you politely before running off down the tunnel, as if she respected your decision.
Anyone can kill. It's harder to put your anger aside and make good decisions about what you can do when you have to.

>Wait do
Tear off you bag (we can always tie or repair the strap later) and dive in with a moment's regret that you're making a mess of your new clothes so soon. (Sorry, Becca).

Dive down next to her, get a hold of her (and/or get her getting a hold of you) and make your way back up. If you can touch the stone wall underwater, you can make handholds to climb your way back up. Probably faster than trying to pull her up by swimming, and she might be able to help climb.

That, and you can hope the others do something clever either with water or air to help while you're down there.

We should have used earth powers to extrude a walkway from the wall.
No. 601490 ID: 87956d

Make a platform from the wall to Alrauna's feet. Or something to hold on to.
No. 601492 ID: 01745f

To clarify, I say we should not jump in because this has every sign of being an attack by a water elym hiding underwater or further down the tunnel, so entering the water would give the attacker plenty of opportunity to keep us away from walls. (If this isn't an elym attack the situation is not quite as urgent so preparing for an attack will not be overly costly.)

Now that I think about it our first goal should be to make a barrier between where Alrauna is and the deeper waters further down the tunnel. This would cut the attacker's direct connection* with the water she is currently in while also preventing them from whisking her away.

* Since we can only control stone connected by stone to stones we touch, a similar principle most likely applies to water control.
No. 601522 ID: 2f4b71

Drop your bag and torch, yell for those behind you to grab you, then throw your legs into the water next to Alrauna (so everyone is holding your arms over land). It relies on her being able to grab onto you, but it means you actually have a chance of pulling her out, rather than just ending up with two people stuck in the water.
No. 601569 ID: 0eaf76
File 141574447191.png - (54.73KB , 1100x900 , 50.png )

You throw your bag off to the side, placing your palms against the wall. You block off the rest of the water with a stone wall, sealing in whatever was grabbing Alrauna. Then, you summon an elevated walkway to lift the halfling from the ground by raising up the bed of the tiny river.. As the water level rose, the others walked back up the staircase to avoid touching the water. Eventually, the water drained out, leaving only Alrauna and some sort of shark person. Was she an Elymem, too?

Alrauna sat up, coughing and sputtering into her hand. The shark girl was clinging onto the halfling's leg, rubbing her face on it. "Dragon girl! It has been too long!" Alrauna looked bewildered. "Jira?! What are you *cough* doing down here?"

"Jira's home is down here now! They moved Jira. How have you been, Dragon girl?"

You're kind of...confused. Are they friends? Why was this girl living in the basement? "Are these Dragon girl's friends? Jira is name, Jira knows Dragon from before."

"Oh! W-Well that's a relief that...you aren't going to kill us..." Erwin whimpered. Everyone began to relax once they realized there was really no threat. You pushed the wall back into the ground as well. "What are Dragon's friends doing down here?"

"We're trying to find a hiding place, so the Order doesn't capture us." Alrauna explained, climbing out of the water. She began to shake her wings, drying herself off in the process.

"Order? Are they still alive? I thought Order was no more."

"No...they came back."

Becca interrupted they conversation. "Wait, you mean this is the SECOND time they've tried doing this?"

"Yes, the Order has been around for decades. But they were stopped the first time. Anyways, Jira can you take us to your cave? We need to use it for a while."

"Yes, Jira can do that." She then turned to look at you, narrowing her eyes as she did so. "Can Jira trust you?"
No. 601571 ID: 07a835

Tell her you've seen what the Order does to those it captures. You are dedicating yourself to stopping them now. She can trust you.

A question though. Who moved her down here, if not the Order?
No. 601572 ID: 1f8505


We need to go back and get everyone some clothes.
No. 601581 ID: 88960e

You can trust us not to harm you, and if where you're leading us is secret, you can trust us to keep it that way. We're no friends or the order, and we bear you no ill will.

...please be careful with the underwater hugs, though. Some of us need to breathe.
No. 601732 ID: 0eaf76
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You kneel down to get closer to eye-level, holding out a palm for the shark. “I know of the Order and what they have done. I want to stop them, just as much as you do, most likely. They captured me and brought me here against my will, me and the others are trying to escape. You have no reason to suspect me of any ill will.”

“He’s telling the truth.” Alrauna interjected. “He saved me...from the Order.” Jira let out a gasp, grabbing your hand to pull you close, her wide eyes boring into your very soul. “Is this truth, fox-man?! You saved Dragon girl? Jira is very happy!” She gave you a tight hug, her skin slippery and wet. Despite the fact that you were practically hugging a fish...it felt nice. Throughout this entire experience, you forgot what normal things felt like .Something as simple as a hug...it felt so good. You reciprocate the hug, a slow smile spreading on your face. While it may be cheesy, it reminded you of home. Your Mother was fond of hugging as well, as you distinctly remember.
No. 601733 ID: 0eaf76
File 141577561103.png - (50.10KB , 1100x900 , 52.png )

“Jira can help you all get through underground, to the caves! It is safe in caves! Order does not know about caves.” She hopped back into the water, waving her hands. “Follow!” You gather up your belongings again, handing Erwin the torch to hold onto. He seemed a bit grateful that he was being useful. As you trodded along in the water, you made sure to hold your bag full of valuables above the water line. Jira doggy paddled up ahead, tail splashing back and forth. Alrauna stood in front, peeking back at you from time to time.

“Are you doing okay? Don’t need to stop for a break or anything?”
No. 601734 ID: 07a835

You're fine. Maybe you should eat though.
No. 601735 ID: 7c58ae

>Are you doing okay? Don’t need to stop for a break or anything?
I... think so? We should get to safety while we can, right?

Unless you're suggesting using my abilities as much as I have recently should be tiring me out? (Is there a cost to elymem power use? We haven't really been active long enough to know).
No. 601738 ID: 01745f

While we are walking, can we ask some questions?
Firstly, is Jira familiar with elyms or an elym herself? We just found out we are elyms today, and know very little about it.
Also, who took down the Order last time, and would we be able to get their help this time?
No. 602097 ID: 0eaf76
File 141592072009.png - (43.67KB , 1100x900 , 53.png )

You shake your head. “I’m not tired, maybe a little hungry but it can wait until we reach safety.” Alrauna nods at you confidently before turning back around. “Hey, Jira, a few questions…” The shark rose her head a bit as she continued to swim ahead. “Yes? What is it, fox-man?”

“So, you know about Elymems, right? We just discovered our powers today...so…”

“Yes, Jira knows of the Elymems. Jira is not one, but Jira knows plenty.”

“Why are you down here, by the way? Are you involved in the Order at all?”

“Of course not! Jira was on island first! Order came here after Jira! Brought Elymems with them. Jira helped Elymems escape.” Jira scoffed, matter-of-factly. She seemed pretty proud of herself.

“How did you even stop the Order the last time?”

“Jira did not stop Order. Grallus stopped Order.”

“Grallus? Who’s that?” You noticed Alrauna began to hunch over a bit, wings tightening up on her backside.

“Grallus is dragon’s father.”

“Y-Your father?”

“Yes, Grallus died saving dragon from Order. Order did not stand chance, but Grallus died to destroy them for good. But Order is back now...Jira does not know how.”

You hear a few noises come from behind you, it was the rest of the group. They all seemed touched by the story, even Becca. “Alrauna...how long ago was that?” Erwin muttered. The halfling flinched a bit when her name was called,

“That was about 60 years ago…”

“Sixty?!” Becca blurted out, quickly clamping her hand over her mouth. “Wait, Jira how old are you?”

“30. Jira is special shark, though. Jira does not age as fast. Jira heard story from dragon girl.”
No. 602098 ID: 07a835

So, Alrauna is at least 60 years old. Dragons must age very slowly.

Ask Jira what makes her special. She said she knows Elymems, does that mean they are the ones that moved her down here?
No. 602231 ID: a7efea

>So, Alrauna is at least 60 years old.
Not... necessarily. Maybe she got the story about her father from her mother, and she was stuck as an egg for a while?

But yeah, extended lifespan for dragons or even halfbreeds makes sense.

Not sure we should keep prying, though. Jira seems willing to chat, but I'm not sure this is her story to tell.
No. 603237 ID: 0eaf76
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"What do you mean by 'special' shark? What makes you special?"

Jira turned her head to look at you, a mischeivous smile on her face. "Sharks live long time. Jira is old shark, shark from long ago." You think she meant her species, rather than herself, but the point still got across. Sharks were a prehistoric breed weren't they? You had no idea what their life span was...but given all the events of today, you really were in no position to doubt her. You noticed that the air around the caverns became colder and colder...

"Jira, were the Elymems the ones who moved you down here?" You wonder how she even got to know them in the first place... "No! Jira came down on her own! Jira was on island before Order! Jira met Dragon years ago. Jira helped Dragon escape first time. Dragon fought against Order and stopped them for a while again, after Grallus died, but Order is very persistant." No kidding. This is the third time they've showed up? How are you going to be able to stop something that resilient? You at least have to try.

"It's getting kinda chilly...even with the fire here..." Erwin mumbled. "I think it's fine." Oliver admitted, shrugging. "That's easy for you to say! You guys are warm-blooded..." You all share a quiet chuckle. Having a bit of light-hearted humor eased up the tension a bit. Perhaps it wouldn't be too long before everyone was comfortable and confident enough to seige down the Order. "Hey, Erwin. Mind passing the torch back here! We're so cold!" Becca teased, shaking the lizard's shoulder. "N-No way...! I'm not gonna let you have it...you have enough fur on you to keep you warm...!"

Out of the corner of your eyes, you notice something off about Alrauna. She was shivering, though very little. Her body was tense as she walked forward through the water. You assumed the cold was getting to her a bit as well...should you do something to warm her up? You don't want to come off as too touchy...
No. 603238 ID: 07a835

Give her your jacket.
No. 603239 ID: d90668

When someone stops shivering in the cold it can be a sign of hypothermia setting in.

Check her quick before you go farther.
No. 603606 ID: 0eaf76
File 141636831975.png - (34.34KB , 1100x900 , 55.png )

"Hey, Alrauna? Are you cold?" The halfling raised her head in response to your question, before lowering it back down. "No...I'm fine." Trying to act tough, is she? Shivering is the first sign of hypothermia, it's best to take care of this if you can. You peel off your jacket and wrap it around her body. Alrauna froze up instantly, as if your very touch turned her to stone. "What are you doing?" You snuff out a weak laugh. "Oh be quiet, I'm just putting on my jacket. You need it more than I do." At first it felt as if she was going to yell at you, but she just simply wrapped it tight around her shoulders. "Thanks..."

"Ugh, we've been walking for a while. How far away is the cavern, Jira?" Erwin calls out. The shark swiveled her tail enthusiastically, giggling. "It will be a while still! Cavern is very far down! We are going downstream! Deeper underground! Order will not find us! Scent is lost in water!" The shark seemed pretty proud of herself for managing to express this clever plan of hiding away. The others behind you simply groaned out, obviously tired from the long day. You weren't so happy about walking for even longer but it would have to do.
No. 603607 ID: 0eaf76
File 141636833947.png - (37.46KB , 1100x900 , 56.png )

Almost half an hour later, you finally came to a seemingly dead end. However, on the wall there was a huge, wooden doorway blocking some sort of tunnel. "This is entrance! You will have to crawl! So watch heads!" You tug open the door and peer inside. There's a faint light at the end of the tunnel and a distinct warmth radiating out as well. You allow everyone to crawl in before you follow in from behind, closing the door behind you.
No. 603608 ID: 0eaf76
File 141636834706.png - (35.00KB , 1100x900 , 57.png )

The tunnel wasn't very long and before you knew it you were safely nestled in a spacious cavern, with a tiny bonfire, simple furniture and torches scattered around the room. "Jira lives here! There are many caves like this, but this is Jira's!"
No. 603609 ID: 07a835

Ah, good, a fire. First thing's first, everyone gather around the fire to dry off. Then I think everyone deserves a rest. Abel, eat something already.

Hmm, we have access to all the elements here. The torches can be used for fire training, there's a good amount of room for air training, there's all the water back behind us for water training, and of course, all this stone.

That fucker said something worrying though. Apparently it can be difficult to keep Elymem powers under control. Training should be done under observation and with some method to separate the trainee from their element. This could be especially dangerous with fire or earth, powers most likely to injure others.
No. 603645 ID: df3cd4

You should ask about setting this cave, or one of the other caves, up as a home base. That way you can venture back into that fortress, do a bit of guerrilla warfare, save some more people, then run back to your hideout and rest up.
No. 603649 ID: a7efea

>Jira lives here! There are many caves like this, but this is Jira's
Thank you for inviting us into your home, Jira.

Then see about unpacking and drying out your stuff and people. Obviously looking after people is our first priority, supplies, second.

After that I think people need to rest. Reading and training and planning will have to wait.
No. 603662 ID: 01745f

There were splits in the path rather than just a straight tunnel, right? If not, the Order can probably find it pretty soon after finding the secret door, and if so, we should make sure that we can find our way back here.

>That fucker said something worrying though. Apparently it can be difficult to keep Elymem powers under control.
Jira knows about elyms, so lets try asking her whether there are harmful effects of using elym powers a lot like exhaustion or powers getting hard to control. It is important to know whether using our powers whenever possible is valuable practice or dangerous overuse.

A thing we should try while practicing is to see if we can sense through our element, like us sensing the thickness of a stone wall or Becca using air powers like echolocation. Another thing we should try during training is trying to control an object already being controlled by another elym in preparation for countering or redirecting enemy elym attacks.
No. 603668 ID: 0eaf76
File 141637940797.png - (38.06KB , 1100x900 , 58.png )

"Wow...! It's so big...bigger than I expected." Becca exclaimed. She ran over to the bonfire and plopped down, holding her hands out to warm up. "Thanks so much, Jira, for letting us stay here...I know it might be a bit inconvenient..." Jira shook her head earnestly, a huge grin on her face. "Jira is happy to have visitors! It's lonely in the cave..." The others followed quickly to rest up by Becca, trying to dry off their soaked clothes as best they can without getting stark naked. Alrauna, however, stayed fairly close to your side. It was odd...was she fond of you? Or was she just cautious of you? Based on how she was reacting you would assume she liked you in some form or another, but were a dragon's affections really that easy to kindle? Your thoughts were briefly interrupted by the twisting pain in your stomach, letting you know that food was the priority right now. You lay down your bag and pull out the canned foods and breads that you shoved inside. The Elymems turned to you, sparkling looks in their eyes.

"Oh! I forgot you had food, Abel..." Erwin licked his lips, desperately trying to control himself. "We need to ration ourselves...otherwise we'll run out of food before we even get a chance to do anything," commented Oliver. Alrauna grabs a few cans and took them to the cauldron near the fire. "I'll cook up a meal, you worry about warming up." She stated plainly, her eyes zoning in on you in particular. Jira bounced next to the halfling's side. "Jira will help!"

"Well, you guys enjoy your meal...I'm going to sleep." Walt stood up from his spot and found a cozy area in the corner. He laid down on the stone floor and closed his eyes. Probably wasn't the most comfortable bed, but everyone was tired enough to sleep on a bed of nails at this point. The group had a hearty meal of beans and cooked mystery meat. No one even tried to complain, they were simply happy they had a place to relax and eat. Erwin, Becca and Oliver all gathered up in Walt's corner to take a long nap, piling on each other like small puppies. It was endearing. Jira announced she was going to go "fishing", though you doubted anything was living in these underground passageways. Choosing to stay up a bit longer, you unpack supplies and take note of everything in your inventory. Food, books, a few articles of clothing, and a cloth blanket that you managed to nab. Alrauna held a bag as well with the same general contents. There were plenty of things to do...train, research and prepare, but that can all wait until everyone can rest up and regain their strength. A good night's sleep does a body and mind good.
No. 603669 ID: 0eaf76
File 141637942034.png - (44.13KB , 1100x900 , 59.png )

"Abel, if you want to sleep, I'll stay up. I know we don't really need a watchman or anything...but I'm not particularly tired, so don't worry about me." She placed her hand on your shoulder, squeezed, and then nestled down by the bonfire.
No. 603675 ID: 95b7a3

Check the walls for any giant signs Alrauna may have painted reading "Something is seriously wrong, please talk to me!".
No. 603678 ID: 07a835

Sit down next to her. Something's bothering her, does she want to talk about it? If not... maybe she'd like to hear you talk about your normal life?
No. 603681 ID: bb78f2

Nah it's fine.
She want to talk? The other's are asleep. It might be good to get some stuff off her chest. She looks like she's been having a hard time.
No. 603709 ID: a7efea

>Jira announced she was going to go "fishing", though you doubted anything was living in these underground passageways.
Hey, she's survived this long. There's something to eat, somewhere.

Just sit with her, you doof. (If she wants to talk, she will. Otherwise, the two of you will just end up falling asleep by the fire).
No. 603824 ID: 0eaf76
File 141645495120.png - (39.01KB , 1100x900 , 60.png )

"..." There was clearly something on her mind. You had no idea if it was even your business to pry, but might as well offer a shoulder for her to lean on if need be. You plop yourself down next to her, which catches her off guard. "Abel? Just go to sleep...I'm sure you're exhausted." You shake your head. "And I'm sure you're exhausted, too." Alrauna stares at you, looking a tad offended for a moment. "...Just don't expect me to jump into your arms like a damsel in distress." She poked at the flames with her feet, eyes a bit glossy. "So...is there anything you'd like to get off your chest? All the others are asleep..." The halfling didn't respond for a while and then finally spoke up. "Why are you being nice to me?" You blink at her. "What?"

"I said, why are you being nice to me?" She was completely serious.

"Why wouldn't I? You've done nothing wrong to me...and as far as I can tell, you're on our side, I have no reason to be anything but nice to you."

"...But it feels like..." Alrauna trailed off. "...Nevermind. Maybe it's just my imagination."

You both watched the fire project shadows around the room, the warmth giving you a sense of comfort, relaxation, a feeling you haven't felt since you woke up today. You had no idea if it was even night or day. Alrauna shifted beside you, her hand clutching at her chest. You noticed her face was extremely red. Was she overheating? No...she was a dragon. How would that even work?

"I have a tendency to be...loose with my feelings." She huffed, pulling the jacket tight around her torso. "Dragons are a noble race...but they've been on the verge of extinction. It's my responsibility to trust no one, yet..." Alrauna turned her head to you, golden eyes glittering with something resembling respect. "...Maybe it's the fact that you managed to get us this far...or maybe it's just the fact that I'm desperate...but you've earned my admiration. I didn't think a normal boy would be able to survive so long."
No. 603830 ID: a19cd5

I have magic earth powers, pretty sure that isn't normal.
That said, let's wait until we are out of this whole situation to get into anything serious. Relationships formed in stressful circumstances don't usually pan out.

That said, we are totally interested and not-at-all so oblivious that we mistake signs of infatuation like blushing for heatstroke on a goddamn dragon oh my god how are we so dense
No. 603832 ID: bb78f2

Admit you're far from normal. Maybe normal to her, but then normal to her would be super powered to you since she's a dragon, and if normal is disappointing to her, she must be wanting a person as unique as a god then. So is that REALLY normal for her?

She should really describe normal.
No. 603844 ID: 88960e

...well, I doubt normal is the word for whatever I am, but I'd hate to think someone would have to be desperate to think well of me.
No. 603863 ID: 07a835

She has a point... you've been carrying the team for the most part. Nobody else seems to have your raw talent. Tell her you won't let it go to your head.

You know what... you should probably tell her that you have a great admiration for the power of dragons, and... well, she IS very cute to boot, so you do have some personal motivation to treat her nicely. That, and you think she deserves kindness after what she's been through. You uh... found a letter from a previous prisoner. Does she know of a "Ringu"? The letter said he does not share in the Order's beliefs.
No. 603874 ID: eda819

I'd like to vote against pumping her for information, right now, actually. We're having a moment. Building her trust is important- focus on that for now. We can ask follow up questions on our reading later.
No. 603883 ID: bb78f2

ask her if she wants to cuddle
No. 603944 ID: 1e7c27

...I doubt that we're a boy, anymore.

After what we've seen, after what we've done? We've killed people today. There've been things that we've seen today which no man should ever have to see, and yet we still saw them. A boy would never be subjected to that, only aware of it.

And then there's the team. They have no clue what's going on, much like ourselves. Within all of this confusion, it's only natural to seek out a guiding light, for something to show the way out or to show what to do. It could've been anyone, but in the end, we were chosen.

...All of it was circumstantial. Everything we've done was done because no one else would do it. We needed to take action, we needed to show how it was done... but that doesn't mean all the choices were right. There's no telling if they were or not, and there's no going back to fix them either.

...The point is, we've experienced a lot since our awakening, far more than any person should in a single day. We're teaching, we're learning, we're making mistakes... just like any other person would in our shoes. We have a team that cares for our wellbeing as we care for theirs and as they care for eachother's...

We do not deserve your admiration.
Everyone deserves eachother's.

While we alone may have gone through a lot, who's to say that the others didn't? They could be struggling just as much as we are and we'd never know it, only suspect it. You, yourself, are an example of that. We know not what you've seen, what you've done, but we suspect that it is a vast amount. That, is something that should be respected.

Because of today, we are a "boy" no longer.
We are more than that.
And so is everyone else.
No. 604034 ID: 0eaf76
File 141654197709.png - (45.45KB , 1100x900 , 61.png )

"...I don't think I should be considered normal anymore." You grumble, running a hand over your face. Alrauna tilts her head at you, confused. "What do you mean?" You just shrug your shoulders, eyes boring into the dancing fire. "...I've grown up today. I've killed people, Alrauna. I can control the very Earth that sits under our feet..." You have been torn away from your family, your home, your entire way of life. Instead of living out a peaceful life, you've been forced to brutally murder and traumatize people in order to take back whatever freedom you can. A 'normal boy' would not go through something like that. Everyone is shaken up from the day's events... "I'm not the only one. Everyone here has been pushed into some twisted world." You clench your hands into tight fists, a sharp pain shooting through your chest. You missed your family. Your Mom. Your Dad. Your little brothers and sisters. Even your memories of them are clouded. Only remnants of what once was an everyday occurrence still lingered in your head. The soft touch of your Mother’s embrace, the raw power of your Father’s handshakes. Even the irritating whines from your siblings.
No. 604035 ID: 0eaf76
File 141654199330.png - (44.41KB , 1100x900 , 62.png )

“Abel, please stop crying.” You snap your head up with tears strolling down your cheeks. “S-Sorry…” You tremble, shaky hands scrubbing at your face. Alrauna didn’t make any sudden movements towards you and simply removed her jacket, folding it up in her lap. You feel her wing reach over, resting against your backside. “You’re strong, Abel. I believe that you can help us get out of this mess.” You both rested in that spot for several minutes, sitting in complete silence. The Halfling suddenly stood up and began walking towards the other side of the room. “Get some sleep. The worst thing you can do right now is become restless.”
No. 604036 ID: d90668

Get some sleep then. But make sure to reinforce the exit if you can before you go to bed.
No. 604050 ID: 07a835

...yeah. Go flop on the pile. Leave the exit un-reinforced, because only the earth Elymems would be able to open it then and you two might not be the first ones awake.
No. 604064 ID: 01745f

I would support reinforcing the exit, but Jira is still outside, and we wouldn't want to lock her out.
No. 604084 ID: eda819

Yeah, time to sleep.

No sealing the cave in, I think.
No. 606804 ID: 0eaf76
File 141732523922.png - (29.77KB , 1100x900 , 63.png )

You stand up from your seat, wiping your eyes off one last time. Leaving the door open for Jira, you then pad over to the others to lay down beside the pile. Alrauna watches you carefully, a genuine look of worry on her face. She stares at you for a few more moments before turning back to face the fire. As soon as you close your eyes you fall into a deep unconsciousness. You didn't really have any sort of dream. It was all gray fuzz. You're able to hear faint voices and moving figures from time to time.

"Don't you dare! If you do that...the entire balance of the world will be put at risk...!"

"This is a step I must take to enact my vengeance on this world. I will use my power to destroy all that's left of Altius..."


You wake up with eyes snapping open, breath short. What was that? Those voices...you feel like you know them, but when you try and place a finger on them...the feeling vanishes. Sitting up, you see that Jira and Alrauna are sitting by the fire, a few cooked fish hanging off of long sticks. Everyone else is still sleeping. Your eyelids are still heavy, but going back to sleep is difficult...what time was it now? How long has it been since you last saw sunlight? Your perception of time was completely askew.
No. 606811 ID: 69b167

If you're gonna train down here, you're not going to see the sun for a while. Guess you'll have to tell time by the tides?

Join the girls for breakfast. Don't bring up any of the moody stuff from last night. (At least, what you assume was night).
No. 606849 ID: ec2e47

That does make the Altius journal more tempting, but I still think the Elym book should be next in reading order since we need to know how power growth works and whether there is danger of overuse (though we might be able to just ask Jira about those).
Anyway, breakfast time.
No. 606930 ID: 9b57d3

I think you need to read the Altius book immediately.
No. 608557 ID: 0eaf76
File 141766743085.png - (53.31KB , 1100x900 , 64.png )

You get up from your spot and approach Jira and Alrauna. The shark girl waved at you cheerfully, a cooked fish in her hands. "Morning Abel! Jira hopes you had good rest!" Taking a spot beside the halfling, you grab a cooked fish and take a large bite. Immediately you feel a sense of comfort wash through you. The drowsiness and nightmare-ish paranoia shedded like a snake skin. Alrauna turned to you, eyes glowing with firelight. "You were uneasy in your sleep...I could hear you tossing around over there..." Swallowing your food, you scratch your neck with a pang of embarrassment. "Sorry...I had a uh, strange dream." You reach over for your bag and pull out the small stack of books you smuggled from the storage area.

You first pick up the Altius book. Reading a few passages will help alleviate your curiosity, at least. Turning over the cover, you skip over the introductory notices. In the light of the fire, you begin to read the book.

In addition to the districts of Terran, Coelum, Aquaria, and Fiora, there is a fifth district that stretches beyond the mortal realm. Altius. The district of spirits. Not much is known about this mysterious sect. It is infamous for radiating strong magic. Some even believe that beings belonging to Altius are immortal, their souls never passing away...

How strange. You've never even heard of this district before now. Altius? The name seemed familiar, but you had no concrete knowledge pertaining to it.

...Some scholars believe that the reason for death in the mortal world can be traced to the district of Altius, theorizing that the magic in Altius stems from the power of gathered souls. This is, however, unconfirmed and only proves to be a strange belief. The only proof that we have of their existence lies in ancient markings and inscriptions found in ancient tombs and temples. Illustrations depicting great and powerful beings that connected themselves to mortals through their inner essence, perhaps even capturing and controlling souls to a certain extent.

Capturing souls? That sounded an awful lot like the powers that those strange crystals had on Elymems. Could they be used on people who weren't Elymems? You take another bite of fish and continue to flip through the book, picking out tidbits. From behind yourself you hear a loud yawn coming from the pile of sleeping Elymems. Erwin rose up from his spot, rubbing his eyes. "Unhg...what time is it?"
No. 608567 ID: 687279

No idea, buddy. We're underground. Hmm, ask Jira how she keeps track of time.

...I have a feeling Abel has some connection to Altius. Maybe a reincarnation of someone? Ask Alrauna if she knows anything about the district.
No. 608596 ID: 4c5cf2

>Unhg...what time is it?
Morning? I'm not sure how you tell time down here. Tides maybe? Assuming the water in the tunnels is connected to the outside.
No. 608918 ID: 330ce5

Breakfast time, be careful not to wake the others yet.
No. 610772 ID: 0eaf76
File 141834570793.png - (45.88KB , 1100x900 , 65.png )

“I have no idea. We’re underground right now.” You reply, tearing off a piece of fish meat with your teeth. The lizard, half-awake, hobbled over to your other side and eyed the spread of cooked fish with hungry eyes. “Do you mind if I…take one?” Erwin inquired, his voice crackled and quiet. Jira waved her arms about, a huge grin of pride displayed on her face. “Jira caught plenty fish! Eat! Eat!” She beckoned for Erwin to take as much as he needed, which he did graciously. “Mmph…th-this tastes really nice…I think it’s...the nicest thing we’ve eaten since we got here. By the way, Abel, just so I’m clear, erm, what’s the plan now that we’re down here?” You lifted your gaze from the book in your hand. “I was planning on polishing our fighting skills down here, while also gathering up enough supplies to take back here in the meantime.” Erwin swallowed his mouthful, pondering this over.
“By the way, Alrauna, do you know anything about the district Altius?” The Halfling froze up, shooting a curious glance your way. “Why do you ask, Abel?” You held up the book in your hands, calmly pointing to the text scrawled out on the parchment. “I’m reading about it here in this book…I…think it may be connected to what’s going on here, connected to how The Order operates.” Alrauna sort of lowered her head, ear frills quivering slightly. “I know of it, yes. In fact…I’ve…been there before. It is connected to The Order but…I’m not sure to what degree. Rumor has it that one of the higher ups in The Order is actually a native of Altius…which is unheard of.”
No. 610775 ID: 687279

Ask her what it's like!
No. 610800 ID: 60700b

Has anyone asked Oliver what district he comes from? If not, someone should ask once he gets up.

I didn't see any mention of his element or district in any way so far.
No. 610817 ID: 01745f

It sounds like dragons (or at least Alrauna's family) might be from Altius, though I am not sure how we could bring that up without further upsetting her.
No. 610921 ID: c9f2af

>I was planning on polishing our fighting skills down here, while also gathering up enough supplies to take back here in the meantime
Yeah. Stay alive and fed, people work on figuring out how to use their powers (so they can fight or defend themselves when it comes it that, and for whatever other utility purposes we can come up with).

>In fact…I’ve…been there before
Well, she's been off the island, then. Here I was afraid she'd been stuck here since the last time.
No. 613849 ID: 0eaf76
File 141923104518.png - (42.17KB , 1100x900 , 66.png )

"What's the place like?" You lean forward, your interest caught in the prospect of someone who's been to Altius before. Alrauna rubbed her chin, pondering to herself. "How shall I describe it? It's...enchanted. Very surreal." What a vague description. You're a bit disappointed with it. "It's very similar to our own societies...just with er, more magic, I suppose." Magic? Like the kind that Elymems have? "I haven't spent very long in Altius, not enough to know their infrastructure thoroughly..." You wave your hands, dismissing her apology. "It's fine, any information is good, whatever we can find. You said an admin of The Order is a native from Altius?" The halfling confirmed this with a curt nod. "His name is Ringu. He's very powerful...but...very neutral as well. I'm not sure why he works for The Order, all I know is that he's not overly passionate about the cause."

"I assume we're talking strategy?" Erwin interjected, a bit of fish hanging off his mouth. "And did you mention Altius? I used to do research on Altian culture. There's not much information out there...but it's interesting...what has it got to do with all of this?" You explain the entire situation, how Altius may be the very source of magic that The Order uses to brainwash Elymems. "W-Wow...really? I had no idea...that Altius was that powerful..." Jira slapped down another batch of fish, her tail flopping about happily.
No. 613854 ID: 330ce5

You should probably decide how you want to train today.Not sure if the cave is big enough for everyone to start randomly practice their power.
No. 613861 ID: 1ae57f

>W-Wow...really? I had no idea...that Altius was that powerful...
Well, maybe. It's just a guess, based off hints in a book.

It's not direct power though. It's about setup and approach- the mind magic stuff is only so powerful because they have a whole setup for capturing and securing people and then working on them one by one. And because they found a useful group of people to do it to.
No. 613959 ID: 742b4a

When we go back to the fort, we should try to find Ringu alone and convince him to abandon the Order.
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