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953982 No. 953982 ID: 5fc3a0

Previous Threads/Wiki: http://tgchan.org/wiki/Fen_Quest
Inventory and Other Info: http://tgchan.org/wiki/Fen_Quest_Statistics
Patreon: http://www.patreon.com/Lagotrope

>"It's time to go, Valsano." I don't know that person, but he must be one of Valsano's current team that's going back down into the mausoleum.
>"Yeah yeah, I just wanted to see how my main squad is doing, living it up."
>"Oh, yeah, it's great!" says Firzel. "I'll tell all my grandkids about the good old days, in which every single day was spent having Zall beat the shit out of us."

We all listen to Valsano, who will make a typical quip back to Firzel.

It doesn't come. He loses his expression and marches off.
599 posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
No. 956956 ID: bb78f2

Yes. I gifted him a pair of socks and gave him a status update of my lifestyle, given he's responsible for my current position. I'm hesitant to call us friends, as I am somewhat angry at him for throwing so much chaos in my life. Still, I wouldn't kill him unless he's declared a criminal, within my patrol, and won't submit to arrest. I am a guard, I am to either arrest or kill those who resist arrest. Subterfuge, bounty hunting, and assassination is beneath me.
No. 956958 ID: 015bf2

The letters are already a known factor to some people and, presumably, a feature of your report as to how Sayanos decided to target you. It makes denying them or pretending to outright hate Fen quite pointless, so you don't have to be defensive about it.

I think the only additional danger here is your contempt for Krix and how unsettled he is making you. So rein in your feelings. You are a stony mcstone-faced soldier who guts stones all day long.

"Yes, Warlord. After the trial, the barbarian sent me a letter inquiring about my state, seemingly out of concern. After some thought, I decided to send him one back. We have corresponded since, neither of us telling the other more than light details of our lives - nothing others wouldn't be able to suss out, and better. I am still of mixed feelings when it comes to him, but at least our treatment of scheming petty nobles has turned out to be pretty similar."

Maintain your tone.

"Sayanos' revenge scheme was poorly planned, doomed to failure and had him admit to having messed with imperial mail. He was more pawn than stone and I am confident your rule of the Turtle is better off without him. I will accept whatever punishment you order due to his death, but he was neither in the right place nor within his authority to order me to attempt to kill Fen through assassination."

We can at least hope your dislike for scheming petty nobles resonates with Krix.
No. 956961 ID: 10c408

Yeah, okay. I'd keep it brief and honest. Krix *hates* the game that all the nobles play openly and others play quietly. Trying to verbally manipulate him is only going to get us killed.

"Yes, I have. And Sayanos admitted to reading all of it in our first meeting."
No. 956963 ID: 13059a

You got a point, might wanna tell Krix that Sayanos is exactly the backstabby, snaketongued, 7D mindchess greedy and yet oh so petty noble someone of a warlods background would hate with every fiber in their body.
No. 956966 ID: 10c408

My concern is that even giving him the letter instead of answering his yes/no questions will only result in further violence. Those bars will undoubtedly not protect Moss from Krix (and that's not even accounting for the warden)
No. 956980 ID: a0dfd2


Might as well just give a simple yes.

If pressed: you've had some correspondence, and he's the one who has been keeping you up to date on the campaign in Erja Nokol.

We already know someone has been reading our mail, but they don't need to be aware that we know. So long as we believe that nothing we've done is wrong, then the only fault is whatever may have made it through the mail.
No. 956986 ID: 10c408

Actually, I take it back. We can manipulate Krix a little bit. Disguise your disgust for Krix with your disgust for this cloak and dagger shit that Sayanos brought to your doorstep, forcing you to consult Cheese about and cost you a job that you've learned to tolerate if for nothing else other than simply having adjacency to title that most nobles would consider you irrelevant.
No. 956998 ID: 1ed92d

Yes, you have been writing to Fen. That's what he wants to know. Krix already knows you hate his incredibly huge guts, he probably assumes anyone he meets hates him, so no need to bring that up.
No. 957034 ID: 5fc3a0
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"Yes, Warlord. Sir Sayanos had found out by reading my mail."
>"You said you did not attempt Fen's life, because it would hurt the Erja Nokol campaign."

I'd succeed at killing Fen in face to face combat sooner than succeed in keeping my tone in check, so I talk about Sayanos so that my contempt is direct towards him instead of Krix.

"Yes, and I had no faith in Sir Sayanos' poorly planned revenge scheme, nor his position to order me to kill Fen." I pause. I'm sure what I wrote sounded better.
>"Warden, free him."
>"One moment, sir." The warden says and runs to get the keys.

Krix faces me again.

>"If you have anything to say to me, now is the time, deserter."

... The only group I've ever deserted was Krix's own rebellion.
No. 957035 ID: 465a14

For all your anger you haven't changed anything about the system. Your rebellion failed even if it got you a title.
No. 957036 ID: 695467

I feel like saying anything here would be a trap, best to keep your mouth shut.
No. 957038 ID: 48ce40

Huh. Is him suddenly speaking quietly (not bold text) deliberate, I wonder? I notice he just sent the only other person away, as well. Just not wanting the whole history to be brought up, or actually looking for something specific? I dunno, maybe if it'd make you feel better you might say something about him deserting the promises his rebellion made or its ideals or something, or comment about how he treats his own rebels or some such. He's probably expecting something, might think less of you if you just say nothing, so if you word it right you might not technically admit to anything while emphasizing that whole history as something the both of you should leave behind. Or something.
No. 957039 ID: 5298bf

In the end of things, you'll be much more than just a memory.
No. 957040 ID: e2f5cc

"Is... Is there something you want me to say, my lord?"

Saying nothing is also a good plan, and I feel that calling Krix Warlord here will probably be seen as sucking up a bit too much.
No. 957044 ID: 13059a

"Do you really want to call someone who was forced into a difficult situation by someone else who clearly didn't know what they were doing in a attempt to gain more vain power, and thus chose the only way out that didn't kill themselves a deserter?"
No. 957045 ID: c4c8ec

If you feel really cheeky, you can tell him you're surprised he bothers to remember one of the countless people whose family he massacred.
Or that his recruitment pitch sucked.
But I advise against it.
No. 957046 ID: a0dfd2


Let's not. There's a better time and place for that, then unarmed, in a cell, and just having had our life spared.

Krix is an asshole, but right now, we kind of owe him a bit of gratitude. Anything else can wait, considering we've gotten very good at doing just that.
No. 957047 ID: c4c8ec

Or less murder-inducing, can say desertion requires legal authority to conscript.
No. 957050 ID: 86eb65

Probably best to shut up if you can not keep your emotions in check.

What is this deserter talk?
No. 957051 ID: 65e83b

What do you expect of me now? What do you gain from this situation?
No. 957052 ID: baec18

You really shouldn't say anything, but if you absolutely NEED to, do NOT make character attacks, provoke a fight, or question his legitimacy.
DO (if you need to) express that -you- are still angry about your extended family being murdered for not joining a rebellion. If you keep it limited to how angry -you- are, and not how much of an asshole -he- is, it becomes much less likely for him to murder you in response.
You definitely want him dead, and he definitely knows, but if you choose your words carefully here you may get something (very) loosely resembling an apology, or (more likely) he'll say something that absolutely cements his position as king dickhead.
But seriously don't be cheeky.
A lot of work went into you not dying, so don't waste it now.
No. 957062 ID: ce39da

"Part of me still can't believe he actually went and kicked the knife I held to my crotch without looking."

This is the most likely parting word to get a laugh out of Krix: stating that Sayanos is a moron without letting a direct insult slip that could get us in trouble.
No. 957063 ID: b1b4f3

Consider airing your grievances. He just gave you a blank check to do so. Why not give him a fair shot at defending his actions? It's probably gonna be "war is hell, deal with it you pansy" or something similar but he will appreciate being treated fairly.
No. 957067 ID: 91ee5f

I don’t think you should say anything to him. Just be glad that he’s not ripping your arms off.
No. 957068 ID: 10c408

He's baiting you. Do NOT say anything negative that can be used to as justification for him to snap you in half.
No. 957069 ID: c2f1f6

If he'd like information he needs to be specific, anything else you'd like to say you'll take to your grave.
No. 957073 ID: 10c408

Actually I take it back, there is one thing to say. Throw your captain under the bus here.

"I hate the game as much as you do, you know. But unlike my captain, I don't accept bribes to look the other way when treason is afoot."
No. 957074 ID: b1b4f3

Oh, we could do that, yeah. Except more direct? Like just straight up go "I'd like to report that my Captain has been taking bribes."
No. 957092 ID: 10c408

Yeah, being direct is a lot better than my mouthy response that smacks of unintentional hypocrisy.
No. 957094 ID: 015bf2

Krix has done background research on you. No surprise there. You were foisted onto him by Lady Apanya so he'd at least have checked to see what kind of dagger at his back you were intended to be. There's a lot you could unload on him with an open invitation, but with time being short and you appearing too grudge-ridden possibly getting you killed, you should keep any reply simple.

"All I can say is that Sayanos' threats of hurting all my friends and family were far weaker for having so few left to lose."

It implies that threatening friends and family isn't very effective with you. It also outright states that your service was served by your past, however chequered, which isn't something he can really criticize. That you appear to be in the middle of being let go suggests that as long as your actions were justifiable on the surface, he isn't after your blood.

If you can't express anything of the sort without making your bile deep and vicious, just lower your head and say nothing. Better he thinks he successfully shamed you with that deserter comment.

Or you can throw him a few incidental curveballs/rebuttals.

>"May I continue to write Fen?"
>"This prison is a real shithole. Can standards be improved?"
>"What even were your people looking for on those deadland islands?"
>"I've never deserted an Empire army."
No. 957101 ID: bb78f2

Throw the man a boon in exchange for him letting you go just now, information that he might find useful. It may risk making enemies of Cheese and the crows, but I doubt they can hear us down here.

Sir Sayanos's more than likely has a backer of powerful repute and is a friend of the crows, though I do believe their threat and interest in me is minimal. I did some investigating of my own between Sayanos's visits and confirmed this with several sources. They've marked my ex-wife, my associate Gahn and his family, and Sayanos when he was alive as Nonwatchable, and they've made Fen as a neutral party when they were previously allies. I'm not sure if that information's of use to you or not, but I hope it is.
No. 957106 ID: c2f1f6

You've served under him with no problems long after his rebel phase and long before this dark misstep, if he feared you a traitor motivated by revenge he'd've had you dealt with long ago. Since he cares enough to ask, you hope he cares enough to help protect the rest of your friends and family from Sayano's co-conspirators.
No. 957107 ID: 15a025

Mention the captain taking bribes.
No. 957112 ID: 10c408

I think you vastly overestimate how much Krix values Moss, whoever is left of Moss's immediate family aside from his ex-wife and Gahn and also how much soft power Krix has/is willing to use on Moss.
No. 957116 ID: 1ed92d

Wow. He knows EVERYTHING.

"I feel the same now as I did then."

For all you hate Krix and see him as a traitorous, manipulative bastard who threw good people to the wolves to advance himself...

You must admit, he's incredibly perceptive and his knowledge is far reaching.
No. 957151 ID: c2f1f6

I'm thinking he may keep surprising us. That could include killing us as soon as he opens the door or maybe he'll deign to throw some token security their way, But I don't want to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory by pissing him off at the last second.
No. 957155 ID: 4f51b2

Is Krix a mix a of a mountain kobold and a field kobold?
No. 957157 ID: 3ce8ff

this seems to largely be a case of 'I don't really care, but I can't condone killing nobles, so go away and don't bother me' with a possible 'good luck with whatever you do next'
No. 957164 ID: a0dfd2


Agreed. Some upstart he wanted to get rid of got himself offed without needing to get his hands dirty. He pretends to give a shit about a trial, and comes out clean.


Yes, if I'm reading Krix correctly, his use of the term "deserter" is very much an effort to goad us further. He knows we hate his guts, and wants to see if we're fool enough to act on it.
No. 957181 ID: c2ddc6

He could be calling Moss a deserter cuz he wants to frame Moss for deserting the guard so as to have a reason to kill him. While Krix doesn't need a reason to kill Moss, having one could help keep his underlings from being as scared of him.

Idk, my case is flimsy but I have this gut feeling he is going to gut Moss as soon as he walks out of the cell regardless of what he says.
No. 957183 ID: bfd57f

Yeah, can we ask for clarification? Anything to say... in confidence? As a commoner to a noble, a soldier to an officer, or as next of kin to a killer? Dont harangue him for using violence to solve his problems, you are in a cell for murder.
No. 957186 ID: 10c408

That's one way to look at it. my take is that Krix disapproves of the entire mess because of how it was handled by a suspected traitor, even though the murder victim had it coming and also that BECAUSE it was a stone noble under Krix he has to personally sort it out instead of continuing to do.. Well, whatever it is that Krix has been up to.

(I'd be very surprised if, in an alternate universe, we made this Krix's problem he would have sided with Sayanos over Moss)
No. 957244 ID: b8dddb

“I’m not the kinda guy who likes to pick fights I can’t win. We’re both in our current position not because of some barbarian, but because a particularly opportunistic noble wanted to see what’ll happen. If you care about this whole charade as much as I expect you do, which is to say little more than a passing curiosity, then I hope you’ll see me out of this cell and back at my post. I wouldn’t be able to beat Fen, I wouldn’t be able to beat you, but I could certainly handle some upstart bastard who thought he was ready for political discourse.”
Your best chance is a minor deflection; don’t draw much attention to the whole deserter thing as that will tell him what your future intentions may be, but ignoring it altogether will just solidify whatever opinion he has of you already.
No. 957268 ID: f133dc

It really can't be that easy.

Look, this guy is an asshole, but signing your own death warrant because you hate his guys is not smart. Just like you swallowed your bride when you got kneed in the nuts, you are going to do it here to.

But he wants something. He wants a reason to kill or spare you but I don't feel like he's made his mind up yet.

Tell him Sir Sayanos was a cunt, and a useless asshole, but he DID have someone backing him that had cash and men and influence, though you'd have no idea who.

This is a dangerous move, because if he takes an interest in how you know this he would have the resources to make you tell him. But saying nothing or literally everything everyone else suggested maybe bar one or two suggestions is going to net you a swift execution.
No. 957315 ID: d7664c

Deserter? Im only a deserter because I didn't make a deal first. The only reason I'm in jail for murder is because I didn't make a career out of it. The reason is I'm so damn bad at this shit. If I were vicious and cunning and embittered I'd have gone on the mission, got caught, and let you have dealt with the fallout. Everyone saw lady Apanya foist me onto you, they'll think it was your order. But I'm not and I didn't. I'm trying to be free of the past.
No. 957354 ID: be3967

"Wasn't massacring my village punishment enough for that?"
No. 957357 ID: 864e49

Ask if he knows about your past, if he says yes say nothing, if he says no say nothing, thank him for shutting up the prisoners.
No. 957435 ID: 6a5413

If this is one of those,
"How did you know?"
"You just said so!"
things, some of you fell for it.
No. 957487 ID: c2f1f6

Only if the 'how did you know' is us asking how he knew we ditched our shift and ran away to see cheese however many nights ago. Which we will very much not mention at all.
No. 957532 ID: f3f534

With all of these paranoid thoughts going through his head, Moss will finally be able to understand how Fen is always so paranoid.
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