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File 161543224630.png - (84.45KB , 437x700 , 13-1.png )
990619 No. 990619 ID: 07b0f1

Chapter 13
+18 Adult content

First thread: https://tgchan.org/kusaba/quest/res/860238.html
Wiki: https://tgchan.org/wiki/Moot_Point
Previous chapter https://questden.org/kusaba/quest/res/978484.html
241 posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
>>
No. 1001873 ID: f8fa51

I'm not sure surrounding Gabe is the best idea. Is there something else we can think of to calm him down before we walk in?
>>
No. 1001971 ID: 36784c

>>1001872
It’s either that or Fletcher disapproves of Gabe flirting with a boy instead of a girl.
>>
No. 1002014 ID: a148d0

Send in Delilah first, a familiar face would probably help calm him down. Have Vivian and Littany cover the other exits in case they do try to run for it
>>
No. 1002015 ID: a9af05

>>1002014
>Send in Delilah first, a familiar face would probably help calm him down.
This will be Gabe in the past. Dream logic will dictate that he's never met Delilah and she'll just be a stranger to him.
>>
No. 1002036 ID: 07b0f1
File 162225370650.png - (200.58KB , 700x700 , 13-76.png )
1002036

Vivian, Delilah and Litany hop the fence and approach the barn. The roughly cut lumber of the structure peers back at them from countless knotholes and gaps, its walls creaking as the wind threads through it. Bits of agricultural falderal lay piled against the walls, rusting slowly with disuse. From somewhere inside comes a mischievous giggle.

Delilah notes that the door is ajar and stops a short distance away, “We should spread out, in case they run. Viv, can you watch the front here? Litany, fly around back and stop them if they try to leave.”
>>
No. 1002037 ID: 07b0f1
File 162225371859.png - (172.11KB , 500x700 , 13-77.png )
1002037

The three dream travelers take up their positions and Delilah shimmies through the crack in the door.

Inside, lazy dust motes drift through the air only to be speared by shafts of light from gaps in the lumber. In the far corner a long abandoned still lies half covered in a tarp, while packing crates pile up next to it. Hay and straw lies scattered around, both piled up in bales, and to cover the packed dirt floor.

A few strands of straw drifts down from the hayloft as a pair of voices giggle.

“Come on! Lets wrestle some more!” One insists, eager and playful.

“Is that all you ever want to do?” The other person snips. This second voice drips with the inflection of proper upbringing, full of youthful pride.

“Its fuuuuuun!” The first retorts.

“My father picked hay out of my hair and gave me such a look the other day. You know how much he disapproves.” The second voice sniffs.
>>
No. 1002042 ID: 96c896

>>1002037
Delilah: offer to wrestle.
>>
No. 1002043 ID: 094652

First impressions are everything, comb your hair out of your eyes and stretch your muscles.
>>
No. 1002070 ID: 2c3010

Introduce yourself with "Did somebody say 'wrestle'?"
>>
No. 1002076 ID: c48caa

See how close you can get without alerting them.
>>
No. 1002164 ID: 5b0071

>>1002037
realize that Gabe may be a kid in this dream.
>>
No. 1002283 ID: 07b0f1
File 162251050059.png - (236.60KB , 700x500 , 13-78.png )
1002283

Another giggle, “That’s why its fun, Hammy.”

“Ughhhh, you’re so annoying! Can’t you just call me Hammond, like a normal person?”

“I dunno, can I? Ham-n-eggs?” Gabe responds, clearly pleased with himself.

His friend is silent, but his indignation makes the one teen giggle even harder.

Gathering his composure, Hammond continue, “Anyway, I wanted to show you something.”

A hushed silence falls over the hayloft as something is laid down with a thump. Delilah stealthily peeks her head up over the ladder to see two mice in their early teens; their noses buried in a large, leather bound book.

“What is it?”

“Its a book, dummy.”

“O’course its a book. What kinda book?”

“Its a book...” Hammond pauses to build suspense, “of magic.”
>>
No. 1002284 ID: 094652

Wait for them to chant something, then peer behind them and say "yes master?"
>>
No. 1002285 ID: e7848c

Ask if you can watch. Give them that winning smile so you appear as non-threatening as possible
>>
No. 1002296 ID: 96c896

Oh he is a kid. This must be when he first got interested in portal magic. More like a memory than a dream though?

Say hello.
>>
No. 1002302 ID: fdda50

I still cannot see how this would work. I don't think young Gabe would have any clue if we ask him directly.

Maybe we should watch a little bit more and see what happens?
>>
No. 1002303 ID: 064924

If the book is the thing that inspired Gabe to be a sender, that may be the form our scroll took in this dream.
>>
No. 1002304 ID: f8fa51

Definitely ask if you can watch. It's disarming, shows you don't disapprove of what they're doing, furthermore it shows an interest in what they're doing, which most people will be be happy to oblige.
>>
No. 1002468 ID: 07b0f1
File 162268499617.png - (164.51KB , 700x500 , 13-79.png )
1002468

This fails to garner the response he hoped for as the other mouse pokes around skeptically. “You sure? Its just funny lines and stuff.”

“Well I wouldn’t expect you to understand it.” Sniffs the book owner, “Its advanced stuff. I’m going to be a magic user one day, probably even a Guardian.”

“I didn’t know magic was just funny lines. Seems like no big deal to me.”

“You’ll see. I’ll be the best magic user that ever lived! Better than Madam Moot, even!”
>>
No. 1002469 ID: 07b0f1
File 162268500315.png - (172.66KB , 500x700 , 13-80.png )
1002469

The ladder creaks under Delilah’s weight and the two mice freeze. Seeing the healer’s head over the lip of the hayloft, they scramble to their feet, grabbing the book and leaping out of an open window.
>>
No. 1002472 ID: e7848c

Litany!
>>
No. 1002487 ID: 96c896

Oh dear. So it's the other guy who's excited about the book. Which means... something happens to him, and Gabe takes up his mantle? Or do they both go to school together and Gabe winds up being the better student? Or they went to different schools and lost contact. Or maybe this isn't a real memory and the other guy is some kind of representation of Gabe's ambition. Someone he wishes he was like?

Oh well, go see if the plan worked and they were intercepted.
>>
No. 1002985 ID: 07b0f1
File 162328872303.png - (151.42KB , 700x500 , 13-81.png )
1002985

“They’re running away!” Delilah shouts, following Gabe and Hammond in long, powerful strides. She drops out of the second story loft, landing heavily in a pile of straw bales unharmed, but a little inconvenienced.

Delilah shrugs off the weight and sprints after the boys, easily outstripping them in a flat run.

Litany swoops down in front of them and spreads their arms wide to bar their way.

The teens are shocked by the angel’s arrival but, sensing the fey’s uncertainty, fork around them and run past.
>>
No. 1002986 ID: 07b0f1
File 162328873070.png - (147.99KB , 700x600 , 13-82.png )
1002986

“Gabe, wait!” Delilah shouts, now close enough to address the teen.

He turns to look at her with confusion etched across his face. “Who’re you? Wha’dya want?” He squints and cocks his head suspiciously.
>>
No. 1002987 ID: e7848c

>>1002986
His help, actually
>>
No. 1003014 ID: f8fa51

We're looking for something, and hope that maybe you've seen it.
>>
No. 1003053 ID: c81c09

>>1002986
Fey shenanigans are afoot, a muse's inspiration has been lost and we have divined your future self will the one to help us find it
>>
No. 1003057 ID: 91d9db

A few suggestions I can think of.

1. We are less rational when dreaming, and our memory and perception can easily mix things up. Even if it's Gabe's young self here, it's still himself in his own head, so it could still make sense to him if we remind him that he already knows us. His mind could go: "I can't tell exactly but they ARE my friends..."

Alternatively
2. People can become aware of they are dreaming (I had a few lucid dreams). Maybe we can try to remind him that directly? If successful, that would make things much easier.

Or
3. If we are in a sandbox where Gabe stucks in this "younger version", then... tell him we are time travlers from your future?

Though
how come he's grey, but his brother is Pink? Is that a hint?
>>
No. 1003143 ID: ab33cc

Telling him outright that we’re inside his brainspace may cause this dream/memory to crash. Who knows what sort of fun things could happen to us then.

I wonder if this is fully Gabe’s memory or the fae scroll making him part of a sort of story or play.
>>
No. 1003397 ID: 07b0f1
File 162380728418.png - (121.69KB , 700x500 , 13-83.png )
1003397

“Its me, Delilah. Remember?” The healer holds her hands up in an attempt to seem non-threatening. “We’re here looking for the song, right?”

“Song? I...” Gabe blinks and thinks hard, like he’s trying to piece together a broken vase in his mind. “This... why’s this so familiar?”
>>
No. 1003398 ID: 07b0f1
File 162380732121.png - (171.56KB , 500x700 , 13-84.png )
1003398

“What’re you doing? Come on!” His friend tugs at his shoulder and they dive towards the hedgeline, slipping through a hole just big enough for an adolescent.
>>
No. 1003399 ID: 094652

Quick give his tail a boob job
>>
No. 1003402 ID: 96c896

>>1003398
Well, I guess you could follow by making the hole bigger.
>>
No. 1003403 ID: e7c7d3

>>1003399
This is perfect, even if it doesn't help us
>>
No. 1003407 ID: 96c896

>>1003399
>>1003403
Petty sure that version of Gabe is underage, guys...
>>
No. 1003410 ID: a49cfd

Jump over the hedge.
>>
No. 1003440 ID: c48caa

>>1003398
Healing magic boosted sprint into a powerslide through the hole!
>>
No. 1003473 ID: ab33cc

How many entrances are there through the hedges? Might have to split up as they could have gone in any direction.

Also might have to explain things with Gabe’s friend and let him know we’re not just a bunch of weirdos butting in on their business.
>>
No. 1003490 ID: f8fa51

Actually, change to tutoring for Noodle. This is really a last chance for her, while we can still meditate later.
>>
No. 1003574 ID: 07b0f1
File 162398140735.png - (148.22KB , 500x700 , 13-85.png )
1003574

Delilah sticks an arm in after them and grabs around desperately, “Gabe! Come on! I just want to talk to you!” A pair of boyish giggles doppler away into the distance as she huffs in frustration.

She stands and finds the two fey catching up.

“How’d it go?” Vivian asks.

Delilah shrugs, “They ran off, scurried down this hole.”

“We need to follow then.” Vivian kneels down to look inside.

Delilah brushes dust off her arm and shakes her head, “Won’t do any good, unless you have some way of fitting through there.”

“You’d be amazed...” The kitsune hooks a graceful finger through the top of the hole and yanks it upwards, expanding the size several times over.

Peering into the gap, Delilah sees darkness. “Shouldn’t this open up to the other side?”

Vivian shrugs. “It’s wherever Gabe went. Somewhere else in his memory, if I had to guess.”
>>
No. 1003575 ID: 07b0f1
File 162398141877.png - (181.59KB , 800x444 , 13-86.png )
1003575

The darkness within the hole pulls at them, and they take each other’s hands just before they’re dragged through.

The three of them stumble back into the orchard. The light is low and trees bare as the icy grasp of winter claws at them. Their feet disappear into snowdrifts as they shuffle around, getting their bearings.

Gone is the seasons harvest, leaving behind the brittle skeleton of an orchard. Trees lay bare and dormant, crackling gently as ice works its fingers under their bark.
>>
No. 1003576 ID: 96c896

>>1003575
Alright, any sign of life nearby?
>>
No. 1003578 ID: acb77d

>>1003575
Stay close, I have the feeling the cold here can really get to us.
>>
No. 1003579 ID: ab33cc

>>1003575
Looks like you skipped forward through time in this memory, you should have a second shot to work things out if you meet them again.
>>
No. 1003614 ID: 094652

Make sure you take notes, the scroll may be reframing Gabe's mind in terms of the play. Harsh seasons for instance. Litany, what were the major stanzas and the general theme?
>>
No. 1003688 ID: 028f23

It very much seems as though we're following the course of a particular series of events that were important to Gabe. Perhaps even the events that prompted him to leave home and become a Sender in the first place. Obviously, it's not an exact memory, it's a dreamscape with our heroes here traipsing about in it, but it's doubtless based on actual memories.

It's a shame neither Casey nor Kol are here. They've known him the longest, and they might have been familiar with Hammond, heard Gabe talk about him once. Maybe even told them the story of this exact memory.
>>
No. 1003941 ID: 07b0f1
File 162441200997.png - (196.87KB , 638x700 , 13-87.png )
1003941

“Gaaaabe!” Delilah calls. The snow seems to muffle all sound, taking her words and tumbling them in the wind.

Vivian curls her tails around her legs and mutters, “Maybe we should have brought Cauldera. Let’s find somewhere warm, shall we?”

Delilah nods. Despite running a fairly hot core temperature, she feels the cold bite at her and she shuffles towards the farmhouse. “Litany, aren’t you chilly?” She asks.
>>
No. 1003942 ID: 07b0f1
File 162441202197.png - (134.43KB , 500x700 , 13-88.png )
1003942

The fey blinks and appears to consider this, “Should I be? My travels take me places much colder than this.”
>>
No. 1003949 ID: c48caa

Is it an angel thing that they're so detached from their own body? In a metaphysical sense I guess. Wasn't bothered by the loss of his eye either.
>>
No. 1003959 ID: 96c896

>>1003942
Weather resistant messenger I suppose.
Find something that's not a tree or snow.
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