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File 127096482990.png - (39.03KB , 800x600 , 98.png )
162527 No. 162527 ID: f98e0b

Mmf. Dio's up.
He awakes with that fuzzy, content feeling you get on the weekends, when you sleep in.

Expand all images
No. 162528 ID: 1ac39d

what is it?!?!?
No. 162529 ID: f98e0b
File 127096489426.png - (42.00KB , 800x600 , 99.png )

Why is there a whiteboard on his ceiling? He has no whiteboard.
No. 162530 ID: 1ac39d

awwww hell. looks like you mind swapped with Dahlia.
No. 162531 ID: 7524b0

Remember, you fell asleep in Dahlia's room. Possibly with your underwear still on.
No. 162533 ID: 1ac39d

oh, yeah. i forgot about that. thought you mind swapped. nasty business that is.
No. 162538 ID: 701a19

Snuggle up with Dahlia.
No. 162543 ID: 9a1fa4

Is she still there or did she get up?
No. 162544 ID: 34470e

Oh man, I so want this to happen.
No. 162545 ID: f98e0b
File 127096597969.png - (64.55KB , 600x800 , 100.png )

Dio's hand bolts to his chest. Nope. No boobs.

It makes its way downstairs. His underwear is securely on, as are his pants. He and Dahlia agreed that would be the safest way. It's the morning after the Ark thing happened. Dio had been convinced he'd dream about their dead faces or something. Instead he dreamed about going to class in his pajamas and blanking completely on a test. Then the teacher turned into a bird so he had ice cream or something.
...Oh right, Dahlia.

Dio feels a hand brushing his arm and breath on his cheek. He turns his head. Dahlia's still asleep. Hi, Dahlia.
No. 162547 ID: 2eac65

Pull her closer. She's about to fall off.
No. 162548 ID: e31d52

You smooth kid, get out of bed without waking her and like make breakfast for her.

Women love breakfast in bed!
No. 162549 ID: 701a19

She's still asleep, right?
How about you 'knock' on her dreamscape and ask if you can come inside?
No. 162550 ID: f95872

I always catch the tail end of these, now I can be here the whole time.

Do be careful not to wake her.
No. 162554 ID: 1ac39d

try to get up and get her back into the bed more, then go make breakfast. maybe change the whiteboard so it says 'stay laying down and await breakfast in bed.'
No. 162695 ID: 8ecfd4

Make sure she doesn't fall out of the bed. Then go make some good breakfast.
No. 162734 ID: f98e0b
File 127100291130.png - (61.21KB , 800x600 , 101.png )

Dio isn't exactly sure what you mean by "smooth". Nothing happened between them last night. Not that he didn't appreciate the company.

He pulls Dahlia up onto the bed a little more. She feels sort of cold so he pulls the covers up on her. She mumbles a bit in her sleep.

...Right. Okay. Breakfast. Dio's not enturely sure how he'll be able to make anything in a dorm, without a kitchen or anything, but he can figure something out. He sits up and blinks the sleep from his eyes

No. 162736 ID: 9bb35a

Allright, so...

Traumatic experiences tend to make the oculus sink faster? When was this even supposed to happen?

Poke it. How does it feels?
No. 162738 ID: 8ecfd4

Isn't the loss of the other two eyes part of some significant stuff?

But that can wait until later. First priority should be breakfast. Go see if you can't find a kitchen to use.
No. 162739 ID: f21281
Audio YTMND_Soundtrack_-_Volume_07_-_08_-_DVDA_-_Now_You.mp3 - (3.21MB , YTMND Soundtrack - Volume 07 - 08 - DVDA - Now You.mp3 )

No. 162746 ID: 0fc814

Test it out a little. Anything noteworthy, now that it's your only one?

Making breakfast would be nice, though it might set expectations a bit high...
No. 162750 ID: e3f578

Well go find a fucking mirror and embarrassingly dance around like a dork, hopefully close by enough that Dahlia can see you and giggle if she wakes up and sees you dancing around around in excitement. Why? I dunno, sometimes its hella fun to be a dork.
No. 162753 ID: 5a2e05

This is the logical course of action. Hell, he's already wearing an amusing t-shirt. That's like halfway there.
No. 162794 ID: f98e0b
File 127101609246.png - (867.01KB , 800x600 , 102.png )

Dio tentatively reaches up and pokes the eye.
Okay, so that's definitely fully integrated. His other eyes are fully gone and it has taken over sight for him. The Oculus allows for improved nightvision and more clarity over long distances, but other than that its only power is the amplification of magic Dio has already been using.

He doesn't really feel like dancing. Now that it's fully in he needs to go on his alienation, as soon as possible. Be out and away for months, maybe even years. His stomach feels like there's a lead weight inside from the nerves.
He looks back at Dahlia. It just had to be three days after he met her, didn't it?
He still has no idea how he's going to make breakfast.
No. 162796 ID: 8ecfd4

Should be some sort of kitchen area place where you get food. See if you can't use that for making breakfast. Or ask Jai to use some fire magic to help you cook breakfast.
No. 162797 ID: f21281

Eggs and bacon. Dalia has to have a cookbook around somewhere. And even if she doesn't, it's piss easy enough we can walk you through it.
No. 162798 ID: 0fc814

A traumatic experience is no time to be practicing cooking. That results in burnt pancakes. Always.

Just lay down and gently hold Dahlia until she wakes up.
No. 162800 ID: 9bb35a

Wait wait, how are you gonna put on your mask to make breakfast if you can't see with it anymore? You're gonna wear Dahila's?

.... now, there's a funny thought.
No. 162806 ID: 45be60

hey, there's a thought. Can't very well go on your alienation without a mask you can't see through.

Check on Dahila more closely though. Being cool to the touch might be a sign of something bad, and it would feel terrible if we missed it. Does she seem to be experiencing a bad dream or anything?
No. 162821 ID: f95872

Durr, phantasmagoria. Do you have the finesse to summon good food? If you didn't before, does the Oculus change that?

If not, summon a monocular helmet.
No. 162867 ID: bcf25c


No. 162870 ID: f98e0b
File 127102450724.png - (61.56KB , 800x600 , 103.png )

Dahlia wakes up a couple minutes later. She glances over to where Dio was lying
No. 162871 ID: f98e0b
File 127102452119.png - (45.54KB , 800x600 , 104.png )

and sits up in bed.
“Morning, Dahl.” says Dio.
“Morning, Dio.” says Dahlia. “Whatcha doing?”
“I am nuking us an omelet,” says Dio. “It’s a recipe Jai taught me. It’ll look sort of weird but it tastes good.”
“Coolio,” says Dahlia, sleepily. “Why are you wearing my mask?”
“My oculus is done oculus-ing,” says Dio.
“Oh, shit,” says Dahlia.
No. 162875 ID: a56bd0

Yeah.. Shit... I guess.. damn... This is going to be complected.
No. 162876 ID: 0fc814

"Yeah, I was just thinking of how I'm going to be alone for months I mean what my new mask should look like."
No. 162877 ID: 7524b0

"Yeah, I guess that means... I'll be leaving soon."
No. 162880 ID: 7524b0

(Actually he can bring someone who's already completed their Alienation)
No. 162881 ID: 9bb35a

We're not gonna be alone. We're taking Jai! She's hardcore! :D
No. 162885 ID: a56bd0

Uhm... This plan is a little more complicated now that we have a girlfriend (who isn't Jai.) It may actually be more diplomatic to go it alone.
No. 162886 ID: 8ecfd4

Or bring Pyrramus. Maybe Everett.
No. 162893 ID: 701a19

Finish cooking, return to her with breakfast, take off your mask, and use your eye to stare into hers.
Tell her "I know, Dahlia, I know." and give her a deep kiss. Traditionally this would be where you give in to your attraction and consummate your love, but I would imagine neither of you are in th mood.

Can your abilities be used for trans-planar communication? For example, can you visit each others dreams? Or do the split-mind trick and each tie a part to the other? Would that be against the rules?
No. 162894 ID: e75a2f

How did the alienation work with Dahlia? Didn't she have her Oculus at a really young age or something?

Maybe you could convince Orpheus to take her with you.
No. 162898 ID: 701a19

I think that's something best left for Dahlia to decide, but now's not the time to talk about that.
If it won't ruin the mood, as if she's going to go on her alienage at the same time.
No. 162901 ID: 9bb35a

Dahila was born with hers, I guess thats why it looks like an actual eye.

And Alienation is dangerous -- he can't go alone! Take th-- I still vote Jai.
No. 162911 ID: d88857

It would be snubbing Jai to not go with her. She's still one of our best buds even if we're happily dating Dahlia.
No. 162935 ID: b63285

Maybe I'm missing something, but why can't we just take Dhalia along?

Regardless, ask her for advice on what to do. Her judgment on this is likely better than ours.
No. 162939 ID: 1ac39d

you can only take someone who has already done theirs.
No. 162941 ID: e75a2f

Thing is, you're supposed to go do yours when your oculus comes in. Dahlia's had hers from birth, meaning she either has already gone, or still has to. Regardless she's a special case, and Orpheus may be inclined to let you two go on your Alienation with each other.
No. 162976 ID: f98e0b
File 127103443682.png - (56.09KB , 800x600 , 105.png )

Dio can't take Dahlia with him. She hasn't been on her Alienation yet. She can choose when she wants to at any time, but she can't go alongside another apprentice.

Anyway, it's not so bad. He has a day's notice before he heads out on his Alienation for him to get his stuff together and say goodbye. This won't be the last time he sees Dahlia before he goes.

They eat, then share a kiss. Dio wants to say something profound, but he can't think of anything in particular.
No. 162977 ID: f98e0b
File 127103444833.png - (112.17KB , 800x600 , 106.png )

Instead he goes to his room and gets his mask.

((Oh no! It looks like Dio’s mask is blank, and he’s in need of some sort of decoration! It can be pretty much whatever you want it to be, as long as it’s only one color. Don’t worry about eyeholes. It’s enchanted to be one-way.))

((Please god no dicks.))

No. 162979 ID: 701a19

Can your abilities be used for trans-planar communication? For example, can you visit each others dreams? Or do the split-mind trick and each tie a part to the other? Would that be against the rules?
No. 162984 ID: b4b34d
File 127103504987.png - (141.26KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

Connection FOUND, bitches.
No. 162985 ID: 620bfb

So there's no way for two students to go to two different parts of the same plane at the same time for their alienation? And, I don't know, end up running into each other?
No. 162986 ID: 34470e
File 127103518657.png - (151.22KB , 800x600 , THAT4.png )

Meh... I bet no one will like this weird abstract asymmetrical warpaintish type mask.
No. 162987 ID: 8ce2bf
File 127103525224.png - (133.60KB , 800x600 , dicks.png )

Oh okay.
>>((Please god no dicks.))
No. 162988 ID: f98e0b

No. 162990 ID: 620bfb

It's your fault for mentioning it. Now it's fresh in our minds.
No. 162992 ID: 1ac39d

they peobably can run into eachother but most likely they can't hang out from then on, they both have missions that they have to do.
No. 162995 ID: 9a1fa4
File 127103595137.png - (156.09KB , 800x600 , Maskie.png )

Probably too intricate, but whatever.
No. 162999 ID: 43d730
File 127103632782.png - (152.86KB , 800x600 , eyedunno.png )

Surprised no one has done a majora number yet.
No. 163006 ID: 4531bc
File 127103692445.png - (117.83KB , 800x600 , diomask.png )

Does this count as a decoration? I hope it does.
No. 163010 ID: f95872
File 12710370351.png - (158.29KB , 800x600 , Dio_Mask_Xdot.png )

The lotus thingy doesn't really fit Brom's aesthetic.
No. 163011 ID: 9a1fa4
File 127103704074.png - (143.71KB , 800x600 , Maskieb.png )

Same category.
No. 163014 ID: f21281
File 127103720632.jpg - (194.33KB , 800x600 , Diomask.jpg )

No. 163025 ID: 6922af

Okay, this one's pretty great.
No. 163028 ID: 1ac39d

but how do you get the fading effect...
No. 163039 ID: f21281

Provided minor enchantment is allowed, just a small visual enhancement utilizing magic.

I kinda thought of it being like a semi-transparency to show off Dios iris.
No. 163040 ID: 7524b0
File 127103855097.png - (114.17KB , 800x600 , mask.png )

It was said we could only use ONE COLOR.

You guys are doing it wrong!

Anyway, here's a joke entry. Because we might wind up fighting amorphous aliens that you need to shoot the limbs off of.
No. 163051 ID: 598985
File 127103947687.png - (136.00KB , 800x600 , IFEELTHEWARPOVERTAKINGME.png )

No. 163052 ID: f95872
File 127103951484.jpg - (161.11KB , 1296x1792 , Dio_Mask_compilation.jpg )

No. 163053 ID: 0fc814
File 127103959416.png - (61.08KB , 500x500 , threeeyes.png )

This combines "I'm an illusionist" and "But I totally am not a weird cyclops" with "I am relatively easy to draw."
No. 163057 ID: 598985
File 127103979960.png - (120.66KB , 800x600 , circleforce.png )

No. 163060 ID: 4531bc
File 12710401884.png - (127.35KB , 800x600 , diomaskminuslense.png )

Alright, Alright.
No. 163068 ID: e3f578
File 127104060271.png - (129.58KB , 800x600 , dios mask.png )

Still going for masquerade mask style. Dio could eat and kiss all the ladies while still wearing the mask all mysterious and stylish like. A mage Zoro.
No. 163081 ID: 4531bc
File 12710412968.png - (115.06KB , 800x600 , diomaskillusion.png )

Seeing as he's an illusionist...
No. 163084 ID: d11fec
File 127104151547.png - (170.07KB , 800x600 , simple.png )

No. 163085 ID: e75a2f
File 127104154466.png - (298.77KB , 800x600 , Mask.png )

Have fun replicating this.
No. 163086 ID: 2eac65

I like the :3 mask. It'll help us get along with people, with less "creepy faceless illusionist" and more "cute quirky witch boy". I'd prefer it in gold, though.
No. 163087 ID: 7524b0
File 127104170014.png - (109.62KB , 800x600 , mask.png )

I made another, more serious one.
No. 163114 ID: 0fc814
File 127104309815.png - (73.33KB , 500x500 , smiley.png )

Slightly more serious version, but I can't figure out how to make gold look okay.
No. 163117 ID: 9a1fa4

You can blacken the wood.
No. 163126 ID: 3e7dd8
File 12710436824.png - (191.18KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

No. 163130 ID: 2eac65

That's not so good. It's too... smug.

Making the lines thicker might help it look better in other colors. Or maybe we could go with an open-mouthed design, like a theater mask.
No. 163135 ID: 0fc814
File 12710439093.png - (75.62KB , 500x500 , this_face_makes_people_trust_you.png )

I got nothing.
Where's Jukashi? Those masked dudes in that KoC chapter looked neato.
No. 163141 ID: f95872
File 127104419695.png - (162.47KB , 800x600 , Dio_Mask_UgyuuGold.png )

No. 163144 ID: e75a2f
File 127104447557.png - (281.00KB , 804x453 , Mask Collection.png )

Rifling through my photoshop brushes.
No. 163145 ID: 2344c5

yknow what i just noticed?

you cant get steve'd with masks.
No. 163148 ID: 8eadbc
File 127104477350.png - (108.26KB , 800x600 , LUCHAAAAAAAAA.png )


You will be a defender of the weak! Friend to all! Vanquisher of all that preys on the helpless!

You know this is the only path!
No. 163153 ID: 0fc814
File 127104506134.png - (30.93KB , 500x500 , surprise_cockfags!.png )

No. 163157 ID: e75a2f
File 127104512816.png - (103.04KB , 800x600 , Question Mask.png )

You're an illusionist. You're supposed to be mysterious, right?
No. 163158 ID: 8c0848
File 127104518216.png - (106.36KB , 800x600 , Youdthinksowouldntyou.png )

No. 163161 ID: 34470e
File 127104524242.png - (127.43KB , 800x600 , THAT4.png )

What are you talking about?
No. 163162 ID: 1ac39d

No. 163164 ID: e75a2f
File 127104538066.png - (101.49KB , 800x600 , No Mask.png )

Wingdings has some pretty cool symbols.
No. 163167 ID: a9631a
File 127104552047.jpg - (127.67KB , 800x600 , giga.jpg )

No. 163172 ID: f21281
File 127104558145.png - (152.44KB , 800x600 , Diomask2.png )

Fun with the Emboss Tool.
No. 163177 ID: 2eac65

Very nice. Maybe a plain smiley would be better, though. Or one of those big open-mouthed grins that you see on theater masks. Or just three dots like on a shyguy's mask.
No. 163180 ID: d88857
File 127104582098.png - (186.87KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

This mask just screams "I am the badassest of the badasses", don't you think?

And there's an off chance that it may prevent someone from opening you.
No. 163187 ID: e75a2f
File 12710459824.png - (110.07KB , 800x600 , Peace Mask.png )

If you want something that's not imposing.
No. 163195 ID: d88857

or this.

When the hobo symbols for "no one home" and "someone home" are beside one another, they kind of give the impression of an eye in the middle, indicating your status as a mage.
No. 163196 ID: d88857
File 127104640964.png - (178.04KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

herp derp file
No. 163198 ID: 34470e
File 127104659178.png - (165.44KB , 800x600 , THAT4.png )

This gives Dio a tactical advantage. He can attack enemies while they're raging.
No. 163200 ID: cf68aa
File 127104661357.png - (73.39KB , 800x600 , mask.png )

Kitty mask :3
No. 163244 ID: 45be60
File 127105750328.png - (79.32KB , 800x600 , cantdecide.png )

yay for reusing subtle eye iconography
No. 163255 ID: f0ceda
File 127105921565.png - (169.12KB , 800x600 , Liam.png )

No. 163264 ID: 2eac65


We should go for something simple, so it'll be easy to recognize from a distance. And by that, I mean "easy to draw".
No. 163265 ID: ed0e3a
File 12710695787.png - (171.08KB , 800x600 , goldenmask.png )

An ancient and feared empire once used symbols such as this to strike fear into the hearts of those who recognised it.

Also gold.
No. 163266 ID: ceac17
File 127107014383.png - (146.88KB , 800x600 , beware the manfools.png )

Since the whole of /quest/ is submitting...
No. 163267 ID: ceac17
File 127107068257.png - (240.01KB , 800x600 , THE TRUE DIO.png )

No. 163270 ID: 9bb35a
File 127107342163.png - (121.26KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

Fools! It must be ONE color! This is how steve in these occasions!
No. 163271 ID: 9bb35a
File 127107379526.png - (133.00KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

No. 163296 ID: e75a2f
File 127108768421.png - (147.71KB , 800x600 , Zombie Mask.png )

Color Burn!
No. 163297 ID: 3b6c92

hahaha oh man
No. 163303 ID: 717301

Actaully this is my favorite so far.
No. 163306 ID: 620bfb

It needs to shift subtly at all times like a kinda Rorschach thing. That way it's even easier on Brom because he never has to keep drawing the same thing twice.
No. 163314 ID: 1963d1


... Kratos?
No. 163320 ID: 4531bc

Riddle me this!
No. 163337 ID: 3b6c92
File 127110526114.png - (165.53KB , 800x600 , plugface.png )

Okay this popped into my head and I couldn't not make it.
No. 163339 ID: 5024b4
File 127110575368.png - (160.83KB , 800x600 , diomasksugg.png )

No matter where you're going, you need to show them you're part of the in-crowd.
No. 163421 ID: a7a85a
File 12711189613.png - (155.39KB , 800x600 , bladetree_mask.png )

I can't believe this hasn't been done yet.
No. 163423 ID: 4531bc

No. 163725 ID: aa99a2
File 127117885146.gif - (36.65KB , 300x225 , Diomask.gif )

Mine has writing, but you can't see it in the thumbnail.
No. 163726 ID: 8ecfd4

Good one sir.
No. 164684 ID: 54af1f


Either of these would be awesome
No. 164714 ID: f98e0b
File 127136334884.png - (142.57KB , 800x600 , 107.png )

Dio reaches for his mask, then pauses for a moment and glamors a flickering glow in its center. Much better.

He's now obliged to head to the Office of Alienation as quickly as possible. After he registers he'll have one day to prepare and then he needs to leave. Is there anything he wants to do now?
No. 164716 ID: ceac17

Go and see Jai. She should know about this, and she'll want to see your mask.
No. 164747 ID: 1e5c58
File 127136611158.png - (122.90KB , 800x600 , 127103444833.png )

The one choice possible
No. 164869 ID: f98e0b
File 127138104211.png - (44.95KB , 800x600 , 108.png )

Dio is about to go get Jai, but then he glances at his alarm. 7:54 in the morning. He considers whether it's a good idea to wake the Sleeping Dragon, even for something so important.
No. 164870 ID: 7524b0

Better just go to the Office of Alienation. We can talk to Jai and/or Dahlia afterwards.
No. 164871 ID: ceac17

Maybe if you bring her a sacrificial offering of coffee, bacon and eggs?
No. 164872 ID: 0fc814

is the protocol that Jai be with you as you sign up? If not, you could get that out of the way without her.
No. 164873 ID: f21281

Put your new mask on, then burst into her room and jump on her bed and scream "HEYJAIDOYOUWANTSOMEBROWNIES?!"
No. 164874 ID: 701a19

You could always use your DREAM powers to tell her or wake her, but just go report your oculus.
Also, send a message to Dahlia asking if she wants to go on her alienage now, or to wait and see if you can take her on the next one.
No. 164896 ID: f98e0b
File 127138347227.png - (85.83KB , 800x600 , 109.png )

It's not necessary for Jai to be there if she's going with him. He decides to go alone to register instead.

"Okay, folks. Next registrant is Diometricus Phrale Eregiorium."
"Diometricus. Isn't that Orpheo's apprentice?"
"Aye. A good kid, apparently."
"I think I saw him get his oculus in. Spirits, they grow up so fast."
"Now you just sound like an old fart."
"Could I maybe have a stool? I can't really see."
"Right. Mood lighting, please, Jeremiah."
No. 164897 ID: f98e0b
File 127138349311.png - (30.73KB , 800x600 , 110.png )

“Thank you kindly, Jer.”
“Why do we need to do the whole spooky thing again?”
“It’s tradition to spook the kids. Would you deny him that?”
“Okay, quiet down, folks. Send Diometricus in.”
“Seriously, now. Stool? Anyone?”
“And get Vibia something to stand on.”
No. 164898 ID: f98e0b
File 127138350895.png - (44.67KB , 800x600 , 111.png )

“Enter, Diometricus Phrale Eregiorium,” announces a voice from within the Room of the Alienation Council.

Dio shuffles nervously in, looking up at the intimidating helmed faces staring down at him.

“You have reached Adultus Oculus. In accordance with the law of our Order, you are now to be cast out until such time as you have proven yourself worthy of the Arcanopolis. Do you understand.”
“Yes,” says Dio, commanding his voice not to tremble.
“It is well,” says one of the mages. “You must be prepared to set forth within one day’s time.”

“You may bring with you as much as you can carry through nonmagical means, as well as a guide and mentor, should you choose to invoke that right.”
“Will you take a mentor, and if you do, whom will it be and why do you choose them?”
No. 164899 ID: 7524b0

I predict there will be a landslide for Jai!
No. 164901 ID: 701a19

Calm down, they're just being spooky for the sake of being spooky.

You're taking Jai, and doing so because you have deep respect and trust for each other, and her skills compliment your own.
No. 164904 ID: e31d52


Also, we should really try to let Dahlia know. From her perspective you fell asleep with her and then VANISHED.
No. 164907 ID: e31d52

No. 164908 ID: d1210a

Well.... I really don't want to say Jai, personally.

And if we go it alone, wouldn't that make any accomplishments more impressive for the lack of a guide?

Plus, with what the Ark Fraternity pulled, I'd rather have Jai stay with Everett.

Too bad we can't take Dahlia with us, but again, it does seem reasonable we could actually be done faster, if it is more impressive to go alone.
No. 164910 ID: 6922af

As do I, sadly. Why didn't we have Dio ask Pyramus? I know it's all about Jai and his awkward friendship, but from the perspective of the training he's been giving us in combat and the lack of sexual tension, that sounds like a better bet to me. If he turns us down we can probably just ask Jai or Orpheo.

I'm not too hung up on taking Jai though. Especially since both she and Dio are in relationships currently. Kinda sorta.
No. 164914 ID: e31d52

>we can't take Dahlia

Wait... why not? She's been through alienation, right?
No. 164916 ID: e3f578

You see now the big thing is that Pyramus fits more of a mentor role and Jai the best friend role. Since Pyramus is a dude likely we could get into awesome scenes where he compliments many women's curves and general other dude shenanigans. He is Bro incarnate.

Jai is the "We've been best buds forever" and then... there's just sexual tension, really I guess. She might be able to give you some good tips and back story but not in an awesome accent or brotherly/womanizing/smug way. She's still the easiest pick for Dio because she won't push him through hard training and likely would get pissy with us if we didn't choose her because women.
No. 164918 ID: 7524b0

Nope. Dahlia can take Alienation whenever she wants, but has not done so yet. And she can't take it at the same time as us and just 'happen' to go to the same location.
No. 164925 ID: f98e0b

Okay, it seems like we've narrowed down the choices to either
Pyramus (evoker, trainer, bro)
Jai (enchanter, friend, bro-but-a-girl).
Whoever has the most votes at 11:00 Brom-time (that's about half an hour) is it.
No. 164926 ID: 1e5c58

No. 164927 ID: 701a19

Jai. We already promised.
No. 164928 ID: 0b2a05

I'm actually gonna say Pyramus this time, wonderful as Jai is. Party balance reasons.
No. 164929 ID: 3b6c92

Jai, I guess.
No. 164930 ID: e31d52

seconding BRO
No. 164932 ID: e3f578

Bros before Hoes. Oh fuck they're intertwined FFFFFF.

Oh fuck it, Jai.
No. 164933 ID: f95872

Does Jai even want to? She's sort of got a relationship going on. We do too, for that matter, but we can't exactly decline an Alienation.
No. 164936 ID: 701a19

She already said she doesn't expect things with Everett to go anywhere, and she can always decline.
No. 164941 ID: 0fc814

Jai is you girlbro. Gotta go with her.
No. 164952 ID: f98e0b
File 127138822623.png - (46.31KB , 800x600 , 112.png )

“Jai Etra Vostra will guide me,” says Dio. “Our powers complement each other and I trust her.”

“Very well. You have chosen your mentor. Now consider your destination."
No. 164953 ID: f98e0b
File 127138823762.png - (342.82KB , 800x600 , materialchoice.png )

“Plane Material. The world you live in, Diometricus, is the most diverse. It is home to countless cultures and wonders you have yet to experience. Its denizens are the Vidder, a vibrant, energetic, and I daresay familiar race that has scattered across the planet.”
No. 164954 ID: f98e0b
File 127138824762.png - (337.30KB , 800x600 , arcanechoice.png )

“Plane Arcane. A hard land, and great. The impossible is the routine, and the environment is doubtlessly one of the most hostile you will find. You must be able and strong to succeed there, but it is a land of legends and glory to those who can take it. Its denizens are the Qal, a strong, bold folk. Stalwart friends and ruthless foes.”
No. 164955 ID: f98e0b
File 12713882576.png - (382.26KB , 800x600 , divinechoice.png )

“Plane Divine. The Hub where the spirits of all other planes meet, intermingle, and move to the next part of their unending journey. The Great Divine Gradient separates the pure from the wicked. Conflict, beauty, fear, education, and challenge mark its slope. Its denizens are the Nephilim, stern guardians of the Spirits.”
No. 164956 ID: e31d52

No. 164957 ID: e75a2f

We can't go to the dream plane? =\

Go Arcane.
No. 164958 ID: 701a19

Do you know of any tyrants on Plane Material?
If you do, you could topple their regime and be done in a week or so.

If not, then Divine. Constant conflict means there's always going to be something you can do to complete your alienation.

Wait, where did Jai want to go?
No. 164959 ID: 3b6c92

Uhmmmm uhhhhhh.

I wanna say Material. I guess.
No. 164961 ID: 7524b0

No. 164962 ID: 6834bc

Voting Arcane. Jai's always wanted to take an extended trip there, and as a place where the impossible happens on a routine basis, it probably wouldn't be too hard to get caught up in something big enough to be an end to Dio's Alienation.
No. 164963 ID: 7f46a5

wait, didnt dio started his life as a slave?

how about a little trip home and visit "family"?
No. 164965 ID: 6922af

Heaven or Hell? DUEL ONE, LET'S ROCK!
No. 164977 ID: 701a19

5Copper's suggestion actually makes some sense, surprisingly.

We have Dio go back to the slave markets. There he can have his dream parasite peer into the memories of slavers to see what slaves they remember and show them to Dio.
From there the fun begins, since Dio can use those memories to torment the slavers every night until they quit or flee.
For example, giving some of them a night terror where they are paralyzed and unable to even breath as slaves they once sold - with their eyes just empty bleeding sockets - devouring their limbs with all the pain they would expect from it.

He could single-handedly shut down the slave markets by driving all the slavers to suicide or quitting. After that he can torment them more so that the survivors become adamant opposition to slavery.
No. 164994 ID: 81613b

Lets go with the arcane one. That seems to have worked out really well for Pyramus.
No. 164999 ID: 362f0c

Material or Divine..
No. 165002 ID: f95872

>A hard land ... one of the most hostile ... must be able and strong ...

Let's go to the Arcane Plane.
No. 165008 ID: f95872

That strikes me as something that would take a long time, be unlikely to succeed, and ultimately fail to achieve anything.

Of course, if something changes that, we could always try then. But for now, it's largely pointless.
No. 165020 ID: 717301

I suppose I'll go with Arcane, seeing as how that looks like the most challenge. Even though that Vidder in the Material shot looks pretty do-able.
No. 165031 ID: f21281

I'm voting for Material just because of the inevitable Dio/Oren Bro Team.
No. 165035 ID: 2eac65

Material. It'll be good for our development to explore a "mundane" realm and get in touch with people who live without magic. That way, Dio won't become too distant.
No. 165043 ID: d1210a

Illusion should be handy against asskickers like Qal.
No. 165048 ID: 59d907

Arcane Vote Here.
Think of all the fantastic things you'd see and experience. Your powers of illusion can only be expanded by such a place. You may even find an advantage using said magic there, since anything is possible, your illusions can stretch your normal levels of credulity.
No. 165086 ID: 620bfb

My thoughts exactly. Votan Material.
No. 165127 ID: ceac17

No. 165158 ID: 6922af

Now I'm on the fence. On the one hand the Plane Divine seems like it would work well to accel Dio's mental maturity, which I personally think is going to count for a lot more than toughening him up via Plane Arcane. On the other hand, the greatness that would ensue by the meeting of Dio and Oren would be worth it. But wouldn't that also make it easier for the Arkers to find Dio?

Eh, I'll stick with Divine.
No. 165174 ID: b9eab8

Material or Divine. Dio's not suited to rough terrain. He can't conjure food, fire, or water, after all, just change people's perceptions. That means going somewhere with lots of people if he wants to best make use of his abilities.

I probably only actually get one choice, so I'll go with Divine just because Material is less exciting.
No. 165181 ID: b9eab8

ACTUALLY, switch that to Material. lol indecision but it'd be nice to meet some mundane Vidders.
No. 165207 ID: 09d990

Dio,I just want to make one thing clear.

Wherever you go, make sure to bring your RITUAL SUMMONING EQUIPMENT. It's a wildcard that never works as intended, but it's by far the most powerful bit of magic you have access to.
No. 165264 ID: b60450

I'm going to have to say material just because of the likely chance he'll meet Oren.
No. 165281 ID: f98e0b
File 127145535655.png - (30.71KB , 800x600 , 113.png )

"Plane Arcane," says Dio.
"Very well. You leave tomorrow morning. The day is yours to sort out your affairs and pack before you away. Be well, Diometricus."

Dio bows himself out of the room. Where to next, he wonders.

"That's the wunderkind, then."
"Looks can be deceiving, Dissor."
"Could someone help me down?"
No. 165285 ID: 701a19

Jai, then Dahlia.
No. 165307 ID: 0fc814

Go talk to Jai.
No. 165360 ID: f98e0b
File 127146510649.png - (71.64KB , 800x600 , 114.png )

Dio knocks on Jai's door. He hears some banging, a curse, and then she slams open the door. "What-" she says, and then sees Dio's mask and says, suddenly very awake, "Your thingy came in! Did you register?"
"Who and where?"
"You and Arcane."
"Oh wow hold on a sec wait there."
No. 165362 ID: f98e0b
File 127146512251.png - (68.92KB , 800x600 , 115.png )

She slams the door in his face and then a minute later opens it up again. “Whatcha think?” she asks, gesturing to the cloak. “For the Alienation. It’s got some defensive enchantments bundled in for combat and I think it looks nice. I’d need a scarf or something. And, um,” she glances down. “some underwear. When are we going?”
“Tomorrow,” says Dio.
“I’ll pack,” says Jai, brightly. “I’ll handle the sleeping bags and survival shit if you take the fun stuff. Just don’t bring just Sudoku.”
“I love Sudoku,” protests Dio.
“Well don’t go overboard like last time on that fishing trip,” says Jai. “I wanted to hang myself with the spare line. Bring, like, a GBP or comics or something. Shoo. Go pack and hang with other people. Spirits know we’ll be healthily sick of each other’s company by the end of this anyway. If we both live through it. I’m kidding Dio, jeez. Don’t worry. It’ll be awesome.” She shuts the door and he hears her rummaging through her stuff.
No. 165364 ID: f21281

>Clothing enchanted for defense and general well-being.

This is a good idea. We should ste-I mean mimic it.
No. 165365 ID: e3f578

Alllllright lets go get things clear with Dahlia
No. 165390 ID: 7524b0

I think we should hang with Dahlia for our last day together. Maybe you can teach eachother spells like you were planning before.
No. 165391 ID: 6834bc

Seconding both these.
If Jai asks, she copied us.

Also, when meeting with Dahlia, ask her to watch out for Everett for us. We're taking his girlfriend off to the Arcane Plane for who knows how long, and he's got Arkers who are going to be all over him.

We trust her to keep him out of their hands, and it's not like she's going to start dating him or anything.
No. 165480 ID: f98e0b
File 127147494330.png - (121.21KB , 800x600 , 116.png )

Dio and Dahlia worked on teaching their spells to each other extensively yesterday, and today they finish nailing down the details. After a couple hours of blinding and throttling each other, they both agree it's getting boring and start screwing around with Illusions.

"Go for the eyes, Krusty! Eyes! So anyway. Would you watch out for Everett while Jai and I are out? The Ark's not done with him yet and I'm sort of taking his girlfriend away." says Dio.
"We're kind of in the same boat, then, huh?" says Dahlia. "Seeing as she could be percieved as taking my boyfriend away, no offense to Jai or anything. Uh, is it okay to call you that yet, by the way?"
"Yeah, I think we can officially call each other boyfriend and girlfriend at this point," says Dio. "We're on kiss two and we've seen each other in our underwear. You're not going to start dating Everett behind my back, are you?"
"No," laughs Dahlia. "Why would you suggest that?"
"He's got a bad track record of that sort of thing so far," says Dio. "Dodge and weave, Krusty! Or scuttle or whatever!"
"I'm gonna go on my alienation right after you," says Dahlia. "To the Material Plane, I think. Me and Pyramus were talking about going together. There's not a lot left around here for me, after all. Weird I should say that. I mean, no offense, Dio, but I've known you for like, two days. It seems like longer, somehow."

They sit there in silence, watching their respective arthropods try to tear the shit out of each other.
No. 165482 ID: 1ac39d

man, i don't think you could pick a better animal type to fight with. arthropods, fuck yeah!
No. 165486 ID: 0fc814

>We're on kiss two
Shoot for three.

Accidentally turn your illusion into something revealing your feelings and inner turmoil. Like a cutesy heart or something. And then maybe the scorpion almost stabs it, and then you apologize, and so on...
No. 165487 ID: 7f46a5

oh god.

Dio-mons. gotta catch them all!

you are gonna get rich!
No. 165489 ID: 299faa

I think one of the last things we should do before we leave is kiss her again.

Also, thank Pyramus for his help.

Reassure Everett that we'll get his girlfriend back to him as soon as possible.
No. 165493 ID: 6922af


Agreed on the savin' that kiss until before we go so it's all dramatic thing and thanking Pyramus for teaching Dio to be one with the knife. Not so much the Everett thing. Oh, be sure to pop by Orpheo's office for some last minute sagely advice.
No. 165501 ID: f98e0b
File 12714797891.png - (33.88KB , 800x600 , 117.png )

Dio goes to Orpheo, who gravely congratulates him, wishes him well, and tells him, "Ensure that your emotions are kept, if not in check, then martialled. It is our place to control the mind, not its to control us. Remember."
"Yes, master."
"I am no longer your master as of tomorrow. Call me Orpheo. When you return you will be a fullfledged mage. It has been an honor to instruct you, Diometricus."

"Ye're gonna be awesome, lad," Pyramus tells him after their last training session, grabbing his fist and squeezing it uncomfortably hard. "Bloody awesome. Those daggers are extensions of yer arm. Just remember yer headshots and don't piss off the Qal and ye and Jai watch each other's arses, now. Shouldn't be too hard, seein' as you'd be doing that anyway, eh?"

"Sorry about taking your girlfriend away for so long, Everett."

With all the people visited he needs to, and with the wellwishers having been dealt with, and with the packing squared away (Dio does not care what Jai thinks; Sudoku is awesome), it's now four o'clock. Jai reports she's going to go spend her last night at her parents' house over for dinner. Dio's welcome to come along, but, Jai suggests impishly, perhaps he can think of a better way to spend his time.
No. 165503 ID: f21281

Romantic dinner with Dahlia GO
No. 165504 ID: 3b6c92

No. 165505 ID: 7524b0

Yeah, that.
No. 165508 ID: 697b23

No. 165510 ID: 701a19

We have consensus.
Dinner with Dahlia, then spending the night together.
No. 165596 ID: 4291b2

Romantic dinner is the proper way to spend the night. And who knows, Dio might just get an unforgettable gift to convince him to come back in one piece.
No. 165673 ID: d1210a
File 127152326090.jpg - (76.94KB , 640x480 , One Piece.jpg )

>Romantic dinner is the proper way to spend the night. And who knows, Dio might just get an unforgettable gift to convince him to come back in one piece.
>And who knows, Dio might just get an unforgettable gift to convince him to come back in one piece.
>come back in one piece.

I think I know what we must do in the Arcane Plane.....

No. 165689 ID: e31d52

No. 165690 ID: f21281

Oh sweet, she's gonna give us one of her ribbons?! :Dc
No. 165736 ID: f98e0b
File 127154094717.png - (109.15KB , 800x600 , 118.png )

Dio and Dahlia head out to an Eldefolk ethnic restaurant off-campus that's used to catering to Cyclopes.
"Good evening," says the receptionist. "How many in the party tonight?"

"Just two," says Dio. "Could we get a booth?"
"Of course," says the receptionist. "Shall I get out the childrens' menus?"
[It would take just one illusionary rat,] sends Dahlia. [maybe in someone's bowl of chili. We could shut the place down in a matter of days.]
"I'm feeling growed-up tonight, aren't you, Dahl?" he says, biting his tongue.
"Would you like a traditional or Arcanopolitan booth?" asks the receptionist. Arcanopolitans have a curtain around them so the other tables don't see their faces.
No. 165737 ID: 1ac39d

they get three strikes. that size slight was strike one.

get an acropolis style, hard to eat with your mask and helmet on.
No. 165740 ID: ceac17

"I will tolerate one height crack. One.

And we'd like an Arkanopolitan booth, if you would be so kind."
No. 165745 ID: 2eac65

We are not going to use our magic to torment or threaten normal folks, especially over an honest mistake.
No. 165755 ID: 4291b2

Go for it. The new mask is nice, but it's nicer to be able to see each others faces.
No. 165758 ID: d1210a

Means this meal can be more private, with possib. of masks off, getting a good chance to further etch faces into minds, make coming time apart easier, etc.

So definitely Arcanopolitan
No. 165760 ID: f98e0b
File 127154530364.png - (181.54KB , 800x600 , 119.png )

"Strike one," says Dio.
"Hm?" says the receptionist.
"Nothing," says Dio. "We'd like an Arkanopolitan booth, if you would be so kind."

The food comes fairly quickly, and the service is good, if a little nervous. The vidder here have dealt with unhappy cyclops clients before. Neither of them find they can eat, much.

"Your oculus is cute," says Dahlia. "Is the transition weird?"
"Everything seems so much sharper, somehow," says Dio. "Maybe because it's one image instead of a composite of two. I wounder how depth perception works."
"Magic is magic," says Dahlia. "It's better if you go through life without worrying about it. Anyway, are you excited or what? You're like an official mage now."
"I don't really feel like an official mage. I'm not sure if I'm ready. But yeah."
"Still interested in apprentices?"
"Depends on the apprentice," says Dio, picking at his meal. "But yeah."
"Do you think this can work, then?" asks Dahlia. "Meeting each other so quickly and then suddenly it's a long distance relationship for a few months?"
No. 165761 ID: d1210a

Speak about how you seem to share a strong set of connections (similarities between you, shared events, similar interests), and that you would really like to see it through. You are planning to be big and flashy in the Arcane land when the chance comes, to get home as fast as possible, right?
No. 165763 ID: 4291b2

Well you're both illusionists and dream mages. And Dio has his little extra companion riding around in his head now. They should be able to keep in touch in their dreams, which should be nice, hopefully real nice.
No. 165765 ID: 1ac39d

i don't know if it will work, doesn't mean you wont try your hardest.
No. 165770 ID: 6834bc

You live in a world of magic. You can materialize items and weapons out of dreams, you can summon nightmarish horrors and fuzzy purple polka-dotted bunnies, you can make gargantuan scorpions fight giant enemy crabs.

A long-distance relationship is the last thing that should be impossible in your lives. Difficult, maybe, but not impossible.
No. 165773 ID: 58f4ea

Make no promises. Maybe you didn't noticed, but you might not come out alive from this. And if you come back, you'll be a much different someone.

I'm not telling you to quit on her. If you're willing to try, say so. But no promises. Thats what broken hearts are made of.
No. 165805 ID: f95872

"Well, I hope so... but don't feel obligated if you find that it ceases to.
No. 165806 ID: 915b70

I like the 'messenger' idea via dream guy.

Make him earn his keep every once in a while.
No. 165874 ID: 0fc814

You're dream mages, aren't you? That seems like a romantic way to communicate.

If not, how ARE you going to be able to keep in touch?
No. 165884 ID: 701a19

Magic communication with other students is forbidden while on alienation, but they both have cell phones.

"To be honest? I really hope so, but it worries me. I'm going to try to get this done as fast as possible, but a lot can happen in not a lot of time.
I can't make many promises, but I'll keep my phone on for you."
No. 165885 ID: f98e0b
File 12715606041.png - (218.62KB , 800x600 , 120.png )

"I feel like we've got a lot to encourage us to keep this up," says Dio. "I mean, yeah, it's been two days, but we've been through some pretty crazy shit, right? We seem fairly similar so far, unless there's something we're hiding from each other."
"I wanted to be a velociraptor when I grew up until I was 8," says Dahlia.
"Sometimes when I go through automatic doors I pretend I'm on a space ship and I make the bleepy whooshy noises," says Dio.
"So that's all laid out there, then," says Dahlia. "And we're both illusionists, right?"
Dio nods. "And the physical attraction is there, of course."
"Really? I always saw myself as kind of- uh, overweight."
"If you are the extra padding's well distributed," shrugs Dio. "I always thought of myself as scrawny."
"You're slim," says Dahlia. "Like a stiletto. And you're my size, which is refreshing."
"So yes. I mean we've both got cell phones and the Arcane Plane has great reception, apparently. I think it could work if we really want it to work. Do you want it to work?"
"Yes," says Dahlia. "I mean, I won't pretend like I know right now that we're going to stay together forever or anything, and two days seems weirdly short for us to be what we are, but I feel like you're a facet of my life I didn't even know I lacked." She glances down at her plate. "Spirits. I'm gonna miss you. Want to finish up and get the hell out of here before they start bringing in the highchairs?"
No. 165887 ID: d1210a

"Actually, why not some shenanigans with the staff? Like say, lets leave as THE TALLEST PEOPLE IN THE ROOM. Should throw them for a loop, and I know I for one would love the look on their faces. You game?"

After that, try and guide conversation towards things both of you have always wanted to do, but never got around to, maybe some really great times could be had, without potentially ending with Euro trying to MURDER OUR FACE
No. 165888 ID: e31d52

Very Yes. Tell her you're going to miss her too.
No. 165890 ID: e3f578

All right, dinner's done. So lets go do something fun and awesome. We have a lake nearby lets go watch the sunset/magic sun set/moonrise/magic moon rise in a boat.
No. 165899 ID: d6cb21

You want shenanigans? Make a mobius loop. Have certain events play out in a certain order, always 5 minetes between them. Whatch them freak out as they realize time is looping. Or you could do the tall thing.
No. 165909 ID: f98e0b
File 127156400745.png - (80.43KB , 800x600 , 121.png )

"Thanks for the meal," says Dio. "Money's on the table."
"Thank you for dining with us tonight, sir," says the receptionist. "Enjoy the rest of your evening."
No. 165910 ID: f98e0b
File 127156404346.png - (60.86KB , 800x600 , 122.png )

"So where to now?" asks Dahlia as they step out into the cool night.
Dio flips open his phone and checks the time. I's around eight.
No. 165912 ID: e31d52


Well... uh. You could go to that pier? or to your place? After all you went to hers last time right? or I dunno, just walk and talk.
No. 165915 ID: d6fef9

CUDDLE TIME! And... more than that?

I don't know how far you two want to take it, but I'd suggest living it up while you still can. You're far more likely to regret what you hadn't done than what you had... You might not get another chance.

If you wanted to leave it as incentive to get back quicker that's one thing but it would be just as true the other way.
No. 165920 ID: 701a19

I'm seconding going back to Dio's place. They need to spend as much time together as possible.
No. 165922 ID: 0fc814

Ask her what she knows about the place you're going, beyond the obvious. Ask if the Qal are really as hot shit as you've heard.
No. 165926 ID: f21281

Stargazing. Preferably in a park or some secluded field or something.
No. 165930 ID: f98e0b
File 127157029336.png - (66.62KB , 800x600 , 123.png )

There are no stars above the Arcanopolis. Instead Dio and Dahlia go out walking a while and somehow they end up here in Dio's room.

"Plane Arcane's apparently nice this year," says Dahlia. "Take pictures, okay? I want to see."
"Are the Qal really all that crazy?" asks Dio.
"Well, there aren't any restrictions on offenisive enchanted weapons on Plane Arcane," says Dahlia. "and most successful Qal warriors have had decades to perfect the craft. They're capable mage-killers, definitely. I-" she shudders. "Spirits. Be careful, Dio."
"I will. It's okay."
"It's just. You know. I'm worried. I don't want... being alone after I met you will be so difficult, and if it were permanent... You'll be fine, I know, because you're a battlemage and you're good at fighting and you almost beat me that one time, sooo you'll be fine, great even, but what if-" she leans toward him a little, her eye locked on his. "What if something happens to me or you or we find someone else and we don't see each other again."
No. 165931 ID: e31d52

Promise to return to her. It'll be adorable. Then kiss her!

No. 165932 ID: d1210a


No. 165933 ID: 1ac39d

then you are just going to have to fight your way out of whatever afterlife you get put in.
No. 165934 ID: 701a19

"Then these days will have been the most valuable memories of our lives, but I promise I'll return even if I have to fight my way out of the afterlife to do it."
No. 165936 ID: 34470e

Do you realize this is exactly what we're going to have to do? We might be able to complete the alienation this way.
No. 165941 ID: f98e0b
File 127157277374.png - (64.80KB , 800x600 , 124.png )

It's around his neck, nestled into his chest. His heart's thumping against it.

"Then we're just going to have to fight your way out of whatever afterlife we get put in," says Dio.
Their lips meet, and in their embrace Dio feels her hand slipping downward. He returns the gesture, pulling her closer and squeezing her rump


suddenly she's pulled away. "I don't think- I'm not sure I'm ready," she says. "To. Uh. I mean, my body's gonna hate me for saying this, the lust's there, and it's all I can do from pushing you onto the bed and... it's just... I've never done this before. It always seemed like it's supposed to be special. The first time. With. ah." Her eye's welling up. "Candles, or whatever. I thought give it a week, or, and, get incense or music or or put on something sexy and maybe surprise you, but now it just feels so... rushed and it's not you or anything, don't take your hand away, it's good there and I mean you make me feel so... you're the right one, I think. I think it'll be you I give-you know, I do it with first. But... it's the Alienation. It's rushed and it shouldn't be like... this. Should it? I don't think I can do this right now."
No. 165943 ID: e31d52

Tell her you understand. You can cuddle like the first time. You'll let her know in advance when you're coming back even more of a badass, right?
No. 165944 ID: 1ac39d

if she feels that strongly about it then let her know you understand.
No. 165949 ID: 701a19

Kiss her, push her to the bed, and don't take her right there; just a cuddling half-naked make-out session.
If she changes her mind and wants to do further, then just remember to keep your dangly bits away from her not-so-dangly bits.
No. 165953 ID: 71a6e9

Be understanding, tell her so, and definitely do the cuddle thing.
No. 165955 ID: e3f578

Nuzzle that babe.
No. 165962 ID: d6fef9

Agree that you should both keep your pants on.

Then take off her shirt.
No. 165992 ID: f95872

She needs a hug. Tell her it's fine.
No. 166035 ID: 58f4ea

Hold back then. After kissing her again.

Imean yea, no first time ends up perfect. But if she wants hers to be, or wanna try to make hers perfect, let her try. :)

Its not like there wont be another opportunity.
No. 166040 ID: d12053

"I understand. That's a big step, especially for someone you just met the other day. How about just a furious make-out session, not going all the way? That still an option? Besides... just think what it'd be like when I get back, right? We could make a day building up to it or something if ya wanted."

Proceed to hope you don't have some terrible accident while on your alienation that ruins your naughty bits.
No. 166127 ID: 23c8f1

Sometimes things just happen.
No. 166135 ID: 362f0c

I approve of her thinking. Besides... gives you more incentive to keep living if you still have fruit left untasted.
No. 166137 ID: f98e0b
File 127160638315.png - (30.60KB , 800x600 , 125.png )

"It's fine," says Dio. "I get it. We'll wait. It'll be better."
"Thanks," sniffs Dahlia, wiping her eye with her sleeve. "I just want to take it slow because I know we'll be able to do it right if we get the opportunity. And I'm really really sorry we won't get the chance 'till months from now but I promise after Alienation we'll rock each others' world, okay?"
"Okay," says Dio, sitting back. "But, you know, since we're both here... is a clothes-on, furious grope/make-out session out of the question?"
Dahlia grins through the tears, nuzzling up next to him. "Not at all, my stiletto."
"Then c'mere, my velociraptor."

She rolls on top of him, wriggling a bit to hike up her robe. He starts to think of something to say, but her lips meet his and he decides that speaking might be overrated. The rest of the night is a warm haze.
No. 166138 ID: ceac17

Was there a happy ending?
No. 166139 ID: 362f0c

This has been an eventful week huh?
No. 166140 ID: 4291b2

Dio sure is a pimp. Now we just have to find him some yellow clothes, make him grow to around 195 cm and make him bulk up.
No. 166144 ID: bfe351

I think plataform shoes are included in the P.I.M.P brand of specialuzed gear :3

And he doesn' needs to bulk up. Just needs a mean bitchslap.
No. 166151 ID: f98e0b
File 127161639338.png - (153.96KB , 800x600 , 126.png )

And then, much too quickly, the sun rises.

Dio dutifully packs his clothes, his ruing chalk and textbooks and materials, some paper and a pencil, his phone, some canned pineapple (he loves pineapples so much), a heavily marked book called Tervis' Too Many Damn Sudoku Puzzles, Vol. 13, a stainless steel canteen, a hand crossbow, Tervis' Too Many Damn Sudoku Puzzles, Vol. 14, a magnifying glass, and, of course, his gifts.

It's tradition for close friends and family to present something. Orpheo gives him a brass charm in the shape of his favorite focus rune, to help in his meditations, and a grave "Good luck, Diometricus" that from anyone else would seem inexpressive. Dio knows Orpheo better than that.

Pyramus supplies a shock-absorbing cloak like Jai's, which has the capability of defense equal to a suit of platemail armor against physical attacks, in Alienation purple, as well as an intricate handshake of their own devising.

Dahlia gives him an adjustable (Chest, hip, back, or belt) brace of ornate, Wisiazek Pattern Eldesteel balanced throwing knives, and a whispered promise stuttered in his ear to save herself for him.

He looks up from his pack. Ten minutes until he meets Jai at the portal to the Arcane Plane. Anything left to do or pack?
No. 166152 ID: e31d52

Nothing else I can think of.
Maybe a photo of Dahlia or something?
No. 166153 ID: 701a19

You have phone numbers for Orpheo, Dahlia, Pyramus, and Dahlia's father, right?
Oh, and since Orpheo is no longer your master, would it be appropriate to address him as "father"?

Well, I think that's pretty much everything.
No. 166155 ID: d1ad31

>“I’ll handle the sleeping bags and survival shit if you take the fun stuff. Just don’t bring just Sudoku.”
You should probably bring something other than just Sudoku.
No. 166157 ID: 701a19

Yes. Bring video games and a handheld TV.
No. 166158 ID: f21281

He's an illusionist. He can -make- games.
No. 166161 ID: 701a19

That requires effort, and doesn't support online multiplayer.
He and Dahlia could spend their free time playing together.
No. 166166 ID: f98e0b
File 127161829215.png - (65.15KB , 800x600 , 127.png )

Check, check, check, and check.
Dio's got some on his phone. Mostly them standing in front of stuff and hugging.

"Took you long enough," says Jai as he walks into the portal room.
"And good morning to you," says Dio.
Jai sighs. "I have taken a tripleshot of espresso this morning. Don't be surprised if I'm on a coffee IV every day we're out there. Did you bring stuff?"
"I hope you like sudoku."
"Boy found dead on eve of Alienation. Friends baffled. 'He had such promise', says Alienation Guide and friend."
"It's a joke, Jai. It is funny. There is other stuff in here. A GBP, a DVD player and season 3 of Gold Plating, a phone with net linkup, more sudoku..."
"Cause of death seems to be asphyxiation on sudoku puzzles stuffed into his big stupid face. Authority rules it to be a victimless crime."
"Yew shaddap."
No. 166168 ID: f98e0b
File 127161850654.png - (249.01KB , 800x600 , 128.png )

"So are you ready?" asks Jai, as they gaze at the portal.
"I guess. Where does it go?"
"The Arcane Plane?"
"Har har."
"It cycles through a series of random pre-approved locations, all over Elidr. That's, uh, the Arcane Plane's version of Eivr."
"Right. So it just dumps us wherever?"
"Pretty much. From there it's up to us. Ready?"
"You first."
"Whose alienation is this?"
"Go on."
No. 166169 ID: e31d52

Brofist and leap through the portal like an action hero when the time comes.
No. 166170 ID: ceac17

Brofist seems like the thing to do, yes.
No. 166175 ID: 701a19

No fear! Just do it!
If you jump into danger all that means is you finish your alienation nice and quick!
No. 166177 ID: f21281


Then dive into the portal.
No. 166180 ID: 4291b2

Dive through the portal in a badass and hardboiled manner.
No. 166187 ID: 0fc814

Go first.
No. 166188 ID: c5cb5d

Suggest to brofist and leap through the portal at the same time like true bros.
No. 166198 ID: d6fef9

This. Awesome plus it removes the very slim but as far as we know possible chance the portal shifts destinations between the two of you going in.
No. 166265 ID: f98e0b
File 127163030088.png - (380.65KB , 800x600 , 129.png )

They agree to go at the same time, and step through the portal. A brofist seems sort of excessive.

Dio walks out into thinner, colder air. He becomes aware of a tightness and a heavyness, from the slightly stronger gravity present on the Arcane Plane.
"Oh snap," says Jai. "I think we got teleported to the Shai floating mountain range,"
"Um," says Dio, looking out at the mountains, chained up in a line together by Qal of the distant past. He scrambles to get his camera, then realizes he left it behind. Fuck. He uses his phone instead. "Wow."
"We're obviously in a lowhanging one, since there's still underbrush around," says Jai, authoritatively. "It shouldn't be too long of a hike back down to civilization and the Qal. About a week, I'd reckon. Unless you want to climb onward and upward?"
No. 166267 ID: ceac17

Some civilization sounds nice. Do you or Jai know anything about recent events in these parts?
No. 166278 ID: f95872

>all-purple cloak
>blue eye-highlight
My inner faggot is crying.

Is there even anything worthwhile up there? Also, how long will our current food supply last?
No. 166284 ID: 0fc814

What's upward? We should go that way unless we have reason to believe it's nothing cool.
No. 166287 ID: 701a19

We have some badassing to do. Why should we check out the mountain unless we know there's something alienation-worthy up there?

I suppose Dio could split his mind and send an illusion off to investigate first, but I'm not expecting anything interesting up there.
No. 166315 ID: 7524b0

Uhm, how much food/water we got?
No. 166383 ID: f98e0b
File 127164060974.png - (403.52KB , 800x600 , 130.png )

>Fashion don't
Well hey, the blue light is just a glamor. Dio can change the color if it's a big deal.

"So what's up and what's down?" asks Dio.
"Well, we're on... Xyxix mountain? Right now? We climb down and we're in civilized Qal territory," Jai points at the hulking black shape partially obfuscating the sun. "And if we keep climbing that's Rthura peak up there. The Delv control this whole region and they like Arcanopolitans. It must be a cyclops-cyclops thing. They consider us kindred, give us a rank in society and everything, which is an honor for the Qal. Anyway, they 'officially' control Rthura but it's pretty sheer and barren and shit, so they've probably only got a forward outpost or something up there. There's probably a killer view, though."

She jogs to the edge of the path and peers down. "Aaand down south there's a whole mess of settlements and stuff. The Delv have a border up but they'll let us in, most likely. Plus there's more to do and it won't take as long going down as up. Your choice, though."
No. 166390 ID: cbe5df

Down sounds wiser. Less risk of altitude sickness, whereas going further up risks having someone getting dangerously woozy while scaling something sheer.
No. 166394 ID: 620bfb

We can always go down for a while, gather proper supplies, then later make the way up.
No. 166397 ID: 701a19

Well, you could always head for the forward outpost and help your allies secure their control by conquering the contested area all the way to someplace worth settling.
No. 166401 ID: d6fef9

And add two weeks to his alienation? Screw that. If we are going up this mountain, we're doing it now. Not sure if it's quite the place for adventure, or if it's likely a dead end.

What says Jai? Is that place worth the trouble?
No. 166403 ID: f95872

Sounds like down is where we want to go. I suppose Jai didn't have the forethought to pack parachutes? Because if you could just jump, that would be both awesome and fast.

>Dio can change the color if it's a big deal.
If you made it the same purple as the shoulders of your robe, you'd be rocking the single-color look. Theoretically, yellow would complement the purple, but in practice it would clash with the mask.

It's not contested, there's just fuck all up there.
No. 166404 ID: 701a19

You don't put a forward outpost in uncontested area.
Mostly because an outpost has to be near a combat front in order to BE a forward outpost. Hence the name.
No. 166405 ID: 7524b0

The thing about the Arcane plane is that there's a lot more pressure. So, altitude sickness isn't a problem. Rather, the opposite is a problem. Going too far down will result in being compressed too much.

I think we should go up!
No. 166406 ID: f98e0b
File 127164249938.png - (404.74KB , 800x600 , 131.png )

"What's the forward outpost there for?" asks Dio.
"The Arcane Plane's natural fauna are pretty fucking aggressive," says Jai. "Many of the most dangerous ones breed up high in the mountains. Some of them fly or have figured out how to traverse the Binding Chains holding them together, so it's common practice to set up a buffer zone at the base of the higher peaks."

"What do you think about heading upward?" asks Dio.
"It'd be awewsome to visit if only for the physical exertion and the nice view, but I get the sense you're in a hurry to get this done and in the end it's your choice. So I suggest heading down to the mainland, I guess."
No. 166407 ID: 34470e

I'm voting down.
No. 166408 ID: 7524b0

So then... nothing interesting should be up on the peak? Let's go down then. We need to get moving.

Also change the illusionary dot into... how about a nice blue-purple. Cobalt blue perhaps.
No. 166410 ID: 701a19

No. 166415 ID: 0fc814

Climb that mountain. Maybe you can figure out a way to glide a tremendous distance off the top!

Or maybe you'll find an army of monsters being organized on the way up. It's mostly unexplored, right?
No. 166418 ID: 1ac39d

No. 166420 ID: d6fef9

Down, unless you're feeling up to exterminating an entire mountain of it's violent wildlife. That might just count for your alienation right there.
No. 166459 ID: f98e0b
File 127164802364.png - (223.28KB , 800x600 , 132.png )

They make the decision to head downward toward the ground, and spend a few uneventful days hiking down the mountain. It's enjoyable, with them talking and laughing, eating canned pineapple and the stuff they scrounge or kill, and Jai filling him in about the Arcane Plane. Try some of the grass, Dio. It's actually pretty good for you. Don't eat those berries unless you want your intestines to become outestines. Dio check out this nifty trick Pyramus showed me you can do with this stick and those stripy treecat things. Ahahaha stop poking the poor spikesnail pffahaha no put it down seriously it can kill a man with one sting.

Dio's got a keen love for pictures, and his phone's almost always out and taking pictures. Jai has a handy trick of filling its batteries through a jolt of arcane force when it gets down into the red. She spends most of the trip experimenting with her new more amplified powers. On her native plane, most of her already potent spells have greatly increased effectiveness. Dio often looks over to see her filling the air with arcane flame or uprooting trees with curtains of force "for the hell of it". She seems jovially energetic, even in the mornings, which is weird for her.
No. 166460 ID: f98e0b
File 127164803726.png - (40.34KB , 800x600 , 133.png )

Nights they unroll their sleeping bags on either side of a flickering arcane fire, supplied by Jai. They usually have one person awake to make sure nothing big and scary sneaks up on them in the night. Usually it’s Dio, since he can sleep in halves and stay up all night, but some nights Jai insists on him sleeping fully sometimes and recharging both halves of his brain, “just in case”.
It’s on one such night, with Dio trying to get to sleep and listening to the sound of the bugs and some far-off critter being noisily eaten by some other one and the tapping sound of Jai texting on her phone, that she snorts and looks at her phone. “Huh.”
“Hmm?” asks Dio. “What is it? News from home?”
“Sort of,” says Jai. “Seems like Everett’s found someone else.”
No. 166462 ID: fddd61

What a dick. That said, it wasn't all that unexpected.
No. 166464 ID: d6fef9

Well it's cool you two are having such an awesome tim-
>Everett’s found someone else.
No. 166466 ID: 7524b0

"Oh jeez. You told me that it wasn't serious, but I guess... sorry? Who's the girl?"
No. 166467 ID: cbe5df

Well, that sure didn't take long.
No. 166468 ID: 701a19

Express your condolences.
She was expecting it, at least. She told you herself she didn't see it going anywhere serious.
No. 166470 ID: 6834bc

"Who?" seems like an okay question to ask.

He could be a dick or it could be something else - Ark Fraternity tricks or whatnot (shut up it's possible, they slice off their own ears for fuck's sake.) Let's reserve judgment until we have the whole picture.
No. 166508 ID: f98e0b
File 127164970197.png - (42.64KB , 800x600 , 134.png )

"Wow. Uh, jeez. I'm sorry, Jai. Who's the girl?"
"There is no girl."
"There's no girl."
"But you just said-"
"It's Bailey."
"Bailey? As in. Bailey. Dude Bailey."
"Dude Bailey."
No. 166512 ID: f98e0b
File 127164975962.png - (42.60KB , 800x600 , 135.png )

There's a moment's silence as Dio processes this, then Jai bursts out laughing. "The look on your face. Right now. Where is your camera phone."
"But- I mean, Everett?"
"Apparently he sort of got in a funk when I left, and then he talked to Bailey, and he sort of comforted him, and then things, ah, progressed."
"And you're laughing about this?"
"I'm fine with it. Everett's apparently completely rediscovered himself, so don't be surprised if he like starts wearing pink robes or something. So now I've got a gay friend, and I'm on the market."
Dio blinks.
"Okay that came out like a weird attempt at flirting. New rule. This is now a sexual tension-free zone, ok, Dio? Jai Vostra is not gonna be the one who broke up the Double D's."
"The double d's?"
"You haven't been listening to talk about you two, huh? I take personal credit for that nickname, by the way. I'm finding me a big, strong Qal man or something down in Delv and we are going to thoroughly friendzone each other until at least the Alienation is over with, on my honor as a battlemage. 'Kay?"
"'Kay. So hey. Speaking of the sea, and the fish therein, you know Pyramus, right?"
"Does he...you know. Talk about me, at all? Tell me about the guy."
No. 166519 ID: e31d52


totally hook them up. They're wonderful.
No. 166523 ID: 6834bc

Oh yes, tell her all about Pyramus.
No. 166524 ID: 701a19

Did he ever talk about her? I dunno...

Well, I think you should support her, but remind her that you're both asexual until the alienation is over.
No. 166525 ID: 283408

Everett did always seem a bit queer, now I guess we know why. This will be great joke material in the future. Jai, she drives men to become gay.

Actually it's appropriate. Joke about it. And tell her Pyramus did say something about her. He hinted that her ass was like a magnet for eyes.
No. 166527 ID: 7524b0

>I mean, ladies like Miss Jai are more to me taste,

Yes, tell her he's interested.
No. 166597 ID: f98e0b
File 127165223365.png - (42.39KB , 800x600 , 136.png )

"He talks about you when we're training," says Dio, truthfully. "Like, a lot."

"Talks about me?"

"He thinks, let's see. You're a great battlemage, you're funny without being a douche, and you make things seem so easy. Oh, and he thinks you'd be a tiger in the sack. He likes brown girls. Says you've got a nice rack and a butt that is like an eyemagnet."

"Really," muses Jai, shaking the article in question a little. "Huh."

"Not to play the matchmaker or anything?" says Dio. "But, ah, go for it. Seriously. He'd like it."

"I see," says Jai, a grin spreading across her face. "I've distracted you enough, Dio. It's like, midnight. You need your beauty sleep and I've got some texts to send."
No. 166602 ID: 34470e

Go to sleep, Dio!
No. 166606 ID: d6cb21

Yeah, I think he is, actually.
No. 166609 ID: 701a19

Get some sleep.
You've been talking to Dahlia regularly, right?
No. 166614 ID: d6cb21

By the way, ever since we got here youve been acting all hyper it seems. You okay?
No. 166655 ID: f98e0b
File 127165469960.png - (74.88KB , 800x600 , 137.png )

Dio's just excited, is all. It's not every day you get to travel to an entire different plane of existence. And frankly, he's having fun. He's got Jai with him, and he's never been happier to call her a friend. Just a friend.

He has been keeping regularly in contact with Dahlia, sending her the pics of all the creatures and places he's seen. She's already into her Alienation on the material plane, with Pyramus. They have agreed that whoever finishes last has to do the others' laundry for a full month.
He feels himself start to drift away. He thinks of the stuff he's going to have to do in the coming months. The tribulations he'll put himself through to get home. The woman ten feet away from him and the man a plane of existence away, and what a great and potentially destructive couple they'd make. The myriad staring red eyes of the Ark.
Mostly he thinks of her. Dahlia.
No. 166657 ID: f98e0b
File 127165472342.png - (143.15KB , 800x600 , 138.png )

And as soon as his head hits the pillow she is standing right in front of him.
No. 166659 ID: d1210a

No. 166661 ID: d6fef9

No. 166662 ID: 620bfb

Remember, you can do whatever you want in your dreams and it still counts as saving yourself in person.
No. 166663 ID: 701a19

Did you accidentally cast a spell to share dreams with her? You better not have; that would be very bad.
Actually, what happens if somebody breaks the terms of the alienation?

Wait, I digress. Say 'Hi', look around. Don't make this a wet dream, since that might be your mind squatter.
No. 166664 ID: 1a29f8

What? Sex?

No. 166667 ID: 7524b0

"Wait, Dahlia? Is that you for real?"
No. 166813 ID: c3c4a6

Assuming you're capable of discerning in your dream:

Is that really Her? I had this suspicion since you're both Illusionists that you could hook up your dreams together without much effort.
No. 166818 ID: 701a19

It shouldn't be that hard, but people on alienation are forbidden from having magical contact with others.
If that's really her then we could be looking at a screwed-the-pooch scenario here.
No. 166844 ID: 1ac39d

i wouldn't be surprised if she got her dad to... pull a few strings, so to speak.
No. 166903 ID: f98e0b
File 127169761237.png - (280.20KB , 800x600 , 139.png )

"Dahlia," says Dio, as she slinks toward him, hips swaying a little more than how she normally walks. He looks around. Nothing but a foggy haze. "Uh. Hi." She's wearing her normal baggy robe, and, he realizes as she sits down on his stomach, nothing else.
"Hi," she says.

Uhm, if you need me, I'll be anywhere else,[b] says Thero. [b]No offense, kid, but the whole meatfolks thing about copulation sort of weirds me out..
Not helping.
Sorry. He flits out of Dio's mind.

"Is this you?" Dio asks Dahlia. "Like, not just a dream, you? Is this some sort of spell?"
She laughs, that sort of scratchy, warm laugh she has, and shakes her head. "Not quite."
No. 166907 ID: 23c8f1

Then what is it?
No. 166908 ID: f98e0b
File 127169929725.png - (279.63KB , 800x600 , 140.png )

"What are you?" asks Dio.
"I am puberty knocking at your door," says Dahlia, walking her fingers up his chest. Dio becomes aware that he is painfully aroused. "I'm your future. I'm your raging adolescent libido and your love and lust and Oedipal Complex. Maybe I'm Dahlia. Maybe I'm someone you haven't even met yet. Maybe I'm Jai." Her eye flickers, changes color to Jai's piercing pink gaze.
"No. No, dammit. She's a friend, okay. A close friend."
She laughs lightly. "There's something divinely mad about trying to lie to yourself, Dio. It is not over between you, and by the end someone will be hurt.
"I am you and your past and the childhood you lost and the memories of the beatings and the whips you have suppressed and the violence and the death that you know is in your future, that you chose and you dread and you cannot wait for.
"I'm your teeth grinding as you push a dagger into a chest and feel the life of your foe spurt and sputter out and the glamors flickering into existence around you and fingers clenching at flesh as you make love and even the food in your mouth as you eat breakfast tomorrow morning. I'm going to happen. You look nervous," she says, leaning in and shifting on him and causing empathetic ripples to go up his spine.
No. 166909 ID: 0b2a05

"...So then why are you here NOW?"
No. 166910 ID: 6b3d5a

"If that's true, tell me something that only I should know."

It doesn't hurt to be cautious when someone claiming to be your id is straddling you.
No. 166913 ID: 8ef1e8

Well don't just sit there like a horny teenager. Be a polite horny teenager and greet your Id. Ask why it feelt like talking to you so directly, normally it's just supposed to be there in the background urging your instincts onwards.
No. 166916 ID: 0b2a05

She shouldn't be personified, she's YOU. Be at one with yourself Dio, you know you have an attraction to Jai, don't suppress it. You make your own decisions, but you need all your facets inside you. Don't run away from it, just accept it. Negativity can let you see the truth, and the truth will give you knowledge for what to do.
No. 166920 ID: 701a19

Don't give in to your urges.
"Ah, ok, so you're my primal instincts and base desires. Lovely.
Can you tell me what, exactly, is going on here?"
No. 166921 ID: f95872

Tell her to fuck off, then.
No. 166922 ID: f98e0b
File 127170425090.png - (286.16KB , 800x600 , 141.png )

"Okay." says Dio. "So you're just me. What are you doing here?"
"I have a message to deliver." says not Dahlia. She leans in and embraces him, whispering in his ear. He doesn't understand the words He can't even remember what she says. But somehow it and the feeling of her pressed up against him send lightning up his back and spirits he
No. 166923 ID: f98e0b
File 127170426216.png - (37.55KB , 800x600 , 142.png )

No. 166924 ID: f98e0b
File 127170426857.png - (40.14KB , 800x600 , 143.png )

No. 166925 ID: f98e0b
File 127170428760.png - (40.50KB , 800x600 , 144.png )

No. 166926 ID: 701a19

Alright, clean up and go back to sleep.
No. 166928 ID: abb30a

addendum: with your face.
No. 166930 ID: 8ef1e8

Perfectly normal thing. Happens to everyone. Find some tissues and clean up, then go back to sleep.
No. 166931 ID: ceac17

Make a note not to sleep nekkid. Acquire surplus underwear.
No. 166937 ID: e75a2f

Make a note to sleep naked, as soiling your underwear is harder to clean in the long run when there are NO WASHING MACHINES around.
No. 166938 ID: ceac17

Yeah I guess. Make a note to spank the monkey every day before bed.
No. 166939 ID: 362f0c

Dream Mages seem to have some fucked up wet dreams...

Seriously, you just got seduced by part of yourself... at least we hope that was just a part of yourself and not some kind of astral parasite.
No. 166940 ID: 0b2a05

Check for that. Everyone has nightmares, yours are just creepy as fuck.
No. 166943 ID: bfe351

Remember to mention to Jai about nocturnal astral parasites and related incubi.
No. 166947 ID: f21281

>"I have a message to deliver"

Prepare for unforeseen consequences?
No. 166952 ID: 362f0c

Erm... let's.. not.
No. 166953 ID: abb30a

I hope not. That'd mean someone's brain getting tongued to death.
No. 166954 ID: f21281

No. 167022 ID: f98e0b
File 127171999563.png - (43.56KB , 800x600 , 145.png )

Dio cleans up as best he can, feeling burning shame, baseless impurity, and an inexplicable sense of loss. He wonders glumly how best to clean his underwear to hide the whole incident from Jai. He considers telling her about it. Should he? Fuck. Fucking puberty. He tries to go back to bed, but it's no use. He just meditates until Jai wakes up.

"Nng. Fah. Coffee."
"Next to the sleeping bag."
They have come to an understanding regarding Dio making the coffee and Jai not trying to bite his face off every morning. Dio makes himself busy packing up the stuff.
No. 167027 ID: 8ce2bf

You should tell her about it. While she's taking a drink of coffee.
No. 167028 ID: f98e0b
File 127172072665.png - (337.36KB , 800x600 , 146.png )

Dio doesn't want to do that. He's way too nervous about the whole thing.
He's still pondering how to talk to her about things when they're on the road again, when she grabs his shoulder. "Wait."
"Hear that?"
"No, I don't hear anything."
"Exactly. The animals have cleared out. Even the birds. Something big is coming."
No. 167030 ID: d6fef9

Just push on through the day as best you can. Talking about it isn't a great idea unless she notices something is wrong and pressures you about it. But given the "sexual tension-free zone" you should both try to avoid the subject.

Oh and Dio, don't worry so much about what little bundle of adolescent anxiety had to say. Just live in the present and do your best. So what if years from now something doesn't work out between someone or another or new feelings pop up way down the road? Right now you've got a good friend by your side an adventure to have and an ass to tap at the end of it. Just see it all through and don't sabotage yourself.
No. 167036 ID: 8ce2bf

Tell her not to worry, something big already came.
Carry on, just watch your back.
No. 167037 ID: 7524b0

Time to get your illusion on. Conjure some camouflage.
No. 167072 ID: d1210a

The multi-limbed, shadowed shape behind is NOT a threat, right?


Either way, go back to back, and stay verbal about what you see as you try to make your way away from here.
No. 167125 ID: 5d00f0

The thing in your dreams was YOU Dio, don't forget that you have control over your own self. Let it settle for a while, you can talk to her about it later.
No. 167145 ID: 754d8d

Time for some defensive misdirection. Vanish yourself and Jai whilst a fake pair of you continues onwards.
No. 167153 ID: f98e0b
File 127173371162.png - (693.99KB , 800x600 , 147.png )

Dio cautiously conjures a patch of tall grass above and around him and Jai, and a pair of duplicates that advance, back-to-back with spells ready, onward. They creep in their doubles' stead. "Can you see anything?" mutters Dio.
"Nope," says Jai. "All this damn tall grass is making it hard to see. I hear something, though. Listen."
Dio strains his ears. He hears a yodeling cry echoing through the mountain. It's difficult to place.

"That's a Kithik," says Jai. "There's probably more. They're pack hunters. They like killing solitary, defenseless prey or ones in smaller groups. I could levitate, get a bird's eye view."
No. 167156 ID: 701a19

Dio, project an illusion of dozens of vidders all over the area.
If they attack small groups, then don't seem so small.
No. 167163 ID: f95872

If she could levitate both of you, then it would become a non-issue, as long as Kithik can't fly.

I reckon that's beyond Dio's abilities.
No. 167164 ID: 7524b0

Sure, use Blind and Major Phantasm to send her up invisible.
No. 167165 ID: cbe5df

Levitation will only mark you two as a target. It'd be better to use illusions to make your group seem like four people, or however many you can manage for a while, since that way there's almost no chance of getting attacked by something trying to pick off a straggler.

But if she takes to the air, who's suddenly alone and in their midst?
No. 167203 ID: 0fc814

Can they fly? Maybe you two could just levitate away.
No. 167513 ID: f98e0b
File 12718137872.png - (246.69KB , 800x600 , 148.png )

Dio mentally debates whether he should create a glamor of a crowd or send Jai up to scout. He's fairly certain he can get up about four or five more vidders, and he thinks he can jury-rig some improvisational invisibility for Jai with a greater glamor mixed with blindness and a bit of imagination. Jai reports she might be able to carry him with levitation, but even though her powers are amplified he's also heavier with the increased force on the plane. She doesn't exactly trust herself to not drop him. "Still," she mutters. "It's an option, I guess."

They continue to creep along, with Dio keeping up the illusion. They near a copse of trees (or whatever the large black things are; Dio makes a mental note to ask about them), when they start to hear them.

"Kthk kthk kthk"
They catch snatches of movement up in the branches. Dio sees them, sort of. Three of them. They jitter and tremble, as if they're images on a faulty screen or flickering lights. Only their unblinking eyes remain unmoving and focused.
"Chasers," mutters Jai. "They're seeing how many of us there are. If we bolt it's their job to chase until the older ones or the wounded or sick slow down and then the rest of the pack pounces. They're not going to give up on us now, Dio."
No. 167514 ID: 1ac39d

what about something huge and flashy? just make a huge fireball. if they see you as powerful they may leave as it doesn't look like an easy fight.
No. 167515 ID: 5d00f0

A show of force maybe? Incredibly flashy stuff?

Dio, do you know what nitroglycerin is?
No. 167517 ID: 0fc814

Illusion up a bunch of dudes anyway. They'll be decoys, at the very least.
No. 167519 ID: 701a19

Use your illusions to vanish and keep walking. Have the other vidders start looking around confused. Get to a defensible spot and prepare to kill things.
No. 167522 ID: e3f578

I think it would be funny to just make yourselves look all big and muscly and dangerous, or something like a Qal with Heavy Duty weaponry, native to the plain, they wouldn't fuck with you if you both are a badass lookin' pair of Qals.
No. 167523 ID: f98e0b

((I forgot to mention: Dio will have to drop his own camouflage if he wants to summon four or five clones :Vc))
No. 167525 ID: fe0817

Have one illusion flee, and watch all three chase after it.
No. 167526 ID: 7524b0

This this this. If they want to separate you, let them think they've accomplished that. In truth, we will be separating THEM.
No. 167529 ID: 0fc814

New plan: Send the illusions running away. When the monsters give chase, ambush them as they pass.
No. 167537 ID: f98e0b
File 127181701787.png - (294.53KB , 800x600 , 149.png )

Dio and Jai crouch in the grass, still camouflaged, and the glamors make a run for it.

Two of the kithiks bare their claws and drop down from the trees to attack. The third one, the one with the horns, remains up in the trees, hissing.
No. 167542 ID: 7524b0

Heheh. They fell right for it. Let the two go a little farther away, then begin the attack. Jai can blast the two that are running off, while you headshot the guy on the perch.
No. 167544 ID: 1ac39d

have jai roast the fleeing ones. since they are pack hunters it should scare the others off as something that can kill two of them so easily is not considered an easy battle.
No. 167545 ID: 701a19

Have the illusions run straight off the cliff and keep going like it's solid ground. If you can make it actually LOOK like solid ground then so much the better.
Once that's resolved, throw an invisible knife at the one calling for backup.
No. 167547 ID: 23c8f1

Get Jai to blast the one up in the tree with something loud and flashy, hopefully that will distract the other two long enough for us to get a few spells off at 'em if it doesn't scare them off.
No. 167567 ID: fe0817


Although it is not necessary, I support this for maximum fun.
No. 167576 ID: f98e0b
File 127182000677.png - (303.72KB , 800x600 , 150.png )

There's no cliff nearby. And even if there was, it seems the kithik are much more surefooted and designed for climbing and leaping than vidders.

Dio quickly dispels all glamors and he and Jai burst from hiding. She lets loose with a blast of fire that lets out a sucking roar as it pulls the oxygen from the air, tightening Dio's lungs. One of the kithik is torched. The other stumbles out of the way, but its left arm catches ablaze.
Dio lets fly with

Summon Item + Blindness = Eyebite Blade

what is apparently not an invisible dagger. Dammit.
The horned kithik screeches and hurls itself to another tree, grasping hold of it with one claw. It pulls out a crossbow and fires it, one-handed, at Dio. The bolt slams into his protective cloak at the shoulder, nearly dislocating his arm and forcing him back a couple of feet, but it ricochets off harmlessly.
No. 167577 ID: 1ac39d

what the?! a crossbow?! i thought these were wild animals. drop both spells and use a double nervelock to make it fall out of the tree and get in close, something weird is going on.
No. 167584 ID: 701a19

Make it think its arm exploded. That tends to work well.
No. 167592 ID: 7524b0

Fuck it. Take two real knives, two summoned knives, and a bunch of lesser glamour knives and throw them all at his stupid face.
No. 167601 ID: d6cb21

Lets just go ZA WARUDO on them
No. 167612 ID: f98e0b
File 12718238349.png - (297.35KB , 800x600 , 151.png )

With a punch of pressure that pops Dio's eardrums, and a sound like a deity clapping His hands, Jai pancakes the second kithik. "Finally a chance to try arcane implosion."

Dio uses nervelock + mind jolt = MY LIMB on the one left up in the tree. It drops the crossbow with a howling cry and bounds back and away.
No. 167615 ID: 23c8f1

Err, should have done that to the other arm, the one it's holding on with. We could drop that and try choking/blinding it at once, that may make it drop outta the tree thing.
No. 167618 ID: 701a19

Entomb it, then snag the crossbow.
No. 167641 ID: d6cb21

Nabbing that crossbow sounds like a good idea
No. 167659 ID: 7524b0

I wonder what a DOUBLE Entomb would do? Try that.
No. 167714 ID: 620bfb

Wouldn't a double entomb just be entomb?
No. 167720 ID: 7524b0

What if it's a double-speed Entomb? Like, near-instant passing out?
No. 167786 ID: f95872

Double Entomb seems like something that would be good fro a target with two tracheas.
No. 167950 ID: f98e0b
File 127186394420.png - (328.34KB , 800x600 , 152.png )

Dio blasts at the kithik with a double entomb, but it's moving fast away through the trees. It blends in with them well. Dio thinks he may have hit it, and hears what he thinks may be gagging, but if he did manage to hit it it hasn't slowed down. He sans the treeline. Lost it. Its crossbow is lying in the grass before him.

"Well," says Jai, stepping back and dispelling the tiny fires that had been lit by her wall of flame earlier. "That's those two down. Did you get yours?"
No. 167953 ID: ee9fc1

Keep up the entomb and pick up the crossbow. Tell Jai you didn't get it, but it should go down pretty soon, unless these things can survive for a long time without air.
No. 167972 ID: f98e0b
File 127186917033.png - (459.73KB , 800x600 , 153.png )

"No, not yet," says Dio, maintaining the Entomb. He reaches down and grabs the crossbow. "It shouldn't be up for much longer, though. It ran off but I think I got it."
"That's weird," says Jai. "A chaser running away? That's not really what they're for. I've never heard of that happening before."
"Ever heard of one using a crossbow?" asks Dio, bending down and picking it up from the grass. It's a shitty thing, barely up to civilian standards, but it's got enough force behind it to kill if aimed right.

Jai just stares at it for a second. "What the fuck?"
"So no?"
"No. Where did they get that? And how did they know how to aim or use it? This is like if you came home and the dog was sitting on the couch reading the newspaper," says Jai. "This is bad."
No. 167977 ID: 701a19

Bad? No, this is good! This is alienation material right here!
Chase down the runner so you can investigate.
No. 167980 ID: 1ac39d

indeed, something this bizarre has to mean something... BIG.
No. 167992 ID: ee9fc1

That is interesting. Keep up your entomb and follow it.
No. 167993 ID: d6cb21

Ok this is just way too convenient. Running into something like this, this early into the aleination just doesnt seem liekly. Either A: they were sent after youor B: someone is training these things as a private army.
No. 168036 ID: 0fc814

It could just be random chance, y'know.

Only one way to find out! After it! Hopefully the entomb will make it drop unconscious instead of going straight from active to dead.
No. 168052 ID: f98e0b
File 127188586767.png - (197.06KB , 800x600 , 154.png )

They follow the kithik into the forest, but it's just too fast. They lose it. Dio strains to hear it coughing or gagging, but all he hears is the birdsong, tentatively returning.
"We could keep going," says Jai. "But I have a supremely bad feeling about this. If the kithik are running away and shooting at us, then they're getting smarter, somehow. And even dumb animals can set up ambushes. There are probably gonna be a hell of a lot more waiting for us out here somewhere. Maybe we should go and tell the Delv about this?"
No. 168053 ID: 701a19

Yea, sure. If you lost track of it then there's no sense sticking around.
No. 168055 ID: a9de4d

if he is going back to his encampment he will have reinforcements. you may need more firepower that what you have now.
No. 168064 ID: 0fc814

I guess we'd better assume that your spell missed. Or can you tell?

Continue to your destination.
No. 168076 ID: f98e0b
File 127189066643.png - (137.28KB , 800x600 , 155.png )

After a few more hours of walking, they hit the rocky foothills of the mountain. The crystals holding it aloft emit a low hum at this point, that soon has Dio's head throbbing.
They reach a pier jutting out into the air.
"That is what now?" asks Dio.
"That says Jai, "is our ride into Delv territory. It's a chainwalker. The qal use it to go between the mountains. It's old but it can probably hold our weight."
"That word 'probably' I do not like. Could you maybe say that last thing without the 'probably'?"
"Come on, ya pussy. If we're going down it's this or I carry your ass."
No. 168081 ID: 701a19

Go for it!
No. 168085 ID: 7524b0

Maybe Jai can levitate alongside it to be sure?
No. 168096 ID: 4531bc

Summon up some chains to secure it, perhaps?
No. 168129 ID: 701a19

Stop being so skittish. This thing is fine.
If you're REALLY worried, then Dio can manifest some thick chain to hold the cart in case it falls, and some support rods to keep said chain from making contact with the larger chain.
No. 168178 ID: f98e0b
File 12719023358.png - (440.78KB , 800x600 , 156.png )

"Looks like the Magi are coming down, sir. Two of them. One of them is Alienation, looks like. Affirmation. Yeah, I hear. I think they're the cause of the fireworks from 2A. Nosir. Okay. Yeah. Just me, sir. Sorry. I'll look as presentable as possible. I hear. Out."
No. 168180 ID: e3f578

Wave to the Qal, be polite.
No. 168182 ID: f98e0b
File 127190248125.png - (393.27KB , 800x600 , 157.png )

"You know if I was Dahlia I'd be riding in there," says Jai. "Tonguewrestling."
"Dahlia can't fly," points out Dio. "And she's tiny."
"Like you."
"Punch you in the face." says Dio, trying hard to ignore the lurch as the chainwalker lurches for another link.
"Kick you in the balls. Hey, look, a guy." says Jai. "I think it's a delv qal. He's hailing us."
No. 168183 ID: 7524b0

Wave. Try not to fall out of the lurching thingamabob.
No. 168188 ID: 701a19

See what he has to say.
No. 168195 ID: 5b0c4d

Wave back. Possibly with a huge illusionary hand.
No. 168196 ID: 0fc814

Introduce yourselves. Bring up the intelligent monsters as quickly as is polite.
No. 168226 ID: 23c8f1

Let's hail him as soon as we get off this contraption.
No. 168237 ID: f98e0b
File 12719087998.png - (250.59KB , 800x600 , 158.png )

The Qal jogs up to meet then as they disembark, hurriedly straightening his bracers. "As a representative of the Delv people," he says excitedly, clanking a bit in his armor as he sweeps low to the ground, "this Collective, whose name and rank is Private First Class Euraeus, is honored to welcome you to the Arcane Plane. You are pilgrims of the Arcanopolis, yes?"
"That's correct," says Dio.

"Killer," says Euraeus. "Uh, sorry, I mean, the Commandant of the 54th Shock Troopers has requested that you visit him at the Border Elite Ops HQ to talk to you. I mean Debrief. Nice mask. Ah, sir. Sorry."
"Thanks," says Dio, adjusting it. "Can we trust this guy?"
"The Qal are refreshingly straightforward," says Jai. "If the PFC wanted us dead, he would have just marched up and run us through. Isn't that right, Euraeus?"
"Yes, ma'am," says Euraeus proudly, then flushes. "I mean, uh, no. Well I would, but I wouldn't want to run you through or anything, it's just, hah, um, my job. If that was my job. Which it's not. Uh, I'm sorry."
"I accept your apology," says Jai in formal tones.

"The kithik are using weapons now," says Dio abruptly.
"They're animals," explains Euraeus. "That'd be like walking home from work and finding your cat"
"Dog," says Jai.
"dog sitting on the couch and reading your newspaper. It seems, ah, unlikely."
"It's what happened," says Dio.
"Well, I wouldn't second guess an Arcanopolitan," shurgs Euraeus. "It seems unlikely to me, but so was ever meeting a vidder cyclops until two minutes ago. You'll want to tell that to the Commandant. Um, sir. Sorry. Are you coming?"
No. 168240 ID: 7524b0

"Of course. Lead on."
No. 168241 ID: 701a19

Show him the crossbow.
You took it with you, right? I mean, they can easily look at it and tell you how it was made, who made it, and what it was made out of, so you obviously grabbed it, right?
No. 168252 ID: 23c8f1

Show him the crossbow and ask what he thinks of it on the way.
No. 168286 ID: 343146

Follow after him.
No. 168512 ID: f98e0b
File 127196099561.png - (285.27KB , 800x600 , 159.png )

Dio shows Euraeus the crossbow as he leads them to the Border HQ. He comments that it looks sort of like a piece of junk to him, but he wouldn't know. He's a swordsman first and a marksman second. Sorry.

Eventually they reach a ramshackle barricade, behind which are pitched several large tents. Off to one side is what looks to have been at one point a large and fancy hotel. Now it's grimy and boarded up.

"Home sweet home," says Euraeus, and waves at a guard up on the parapets of the wall. He waves back and pulls something that opens the steel door leading inside. "The Commandant's right through and in that tent with the gold decor on top. He says it's not particularly urgent, so if you like you can look around a bit. There's an armory and the barracks built into that big old silo, and the big blue building is where the officers sleep and meet, so you'll probably be in there. It was really rizty, at some point, so it's nice in there. And, ah, the shrink works in there, so you'll probably want to visit before you leave. Sir." He grins. "I've got an appointment later this evening. But right now I need to get back to patrol, so, ah, I'll catch you later, sir."
No. 168514 ID: 6aff0b

Only polite to meet the commandant first. So go meet with him.
No. 168527 ID: 23c8f1

see the commandant
No. 168529 ID: 2cbe3e

Go and see the commandant, but stop off and pee first. Don't wanna stop in sportin' a full bladder
No. 168547 ID: f98e0b
File 127196734440.png - (201.57KB , 800x600 , 160.png )

"Huh," says the Commandant, striding to the window and sighting down the crossbow. "This is profoundly disturbing."
"Is it not just a piece of trash?" asks Jai.

"No, it's junk," says the Commandant, whose name Dio can't pronounce. Xjiprate, he thinks. "There's no sighting, the string looks like it could snap at any second, I'm surprised the kithik didn't shoot itself in the foot. Which worries me all the more."
He tosses the crossbow onto his desk. "Because it puts me in the mind of two disturbing possibilities. Someone is outfitting the kithik on a massive scale on the cheap, or they made this thing themselves. Because they sure as hell have never used weapons before. You're telling me this thing hit you with a bolt from this weapon?"
"Yessir," says Dio.
"Call me Xjiprate," says the Commandant.
"Okay, Zji- Xij- okay." says Dio.
"If that's the case, it was stupid lucky, or it was trained," says Xjiprate, pacing. "I need to make some calls and get this investigated as soon as possible. In the mean time, I don't want to hinder you any more than I already have, kids. If you're on your way into Delv territory I wish you well. You can stay the night here, if you want. It's getting later in the day. Thank you for bringing this matter to my attention. It was an honor to meet Arcanopolitan guests."
No. 168548 ID: 6aff0b

Offer your assistance in the search and investigation.
No. 168549 ID: 701a19

"Actually, my friend, I would rather see if I can help you with this situation.
I am on alienation, after all."
No. 168550 ID: 2f0c5b

that and we have to set a trap to get one or two of them. even if we cant investigate, following them can lead to their benefactors.
No. 168575 ID: 0fc814

I thought this WAS delv territory?

Continue further in, I suppose.
No. 168591 ID: f98e0b
File 127197461696.png - (212.76KB , 800x600 , 161.png )

"I was thinking of staying here and helping with the investigation, actually," says Dio. "I'm on my Alienation. Isn't that the point?"

"Really?" says Xjiprate. "Most Arcanopolitans we get here just keep walking. Well, I'm not looking a gift mage in the mouth. If you feel like that we can certainly use your help." He extends a hand and Dio shakes it.

"I have a total of six soldiers under my command here. They're damn good soldiers, even Euraeus though he doesn't look it, but this all seems extremely foreboding to me. I'm getting an old friend up from Castbr who's a specialist at dealing with animals in general and kithik in particular. Should be about a week or two getting up here. Until then the fort, as it is, is yours. Officially your rank is MMS, Materialist Magic Specialist, which is roughly equal to mine.
Feel free to look around the outpost, try not to break anything, and if you want rooms, see Deve in the hotel. She's the administrator for the building as well as Psychological and Mental Health Officer for the outpost, such as it is, and she'll give you a couple of rooms. Or one room to share, as the case may be."
If he notices Dio and Jai's reaction, he doesn't show it. "Feel free to make an appointment to see her too, by the way, if you're feeling under the weather. She's good at her job."
No. 168593 ID: 701a19

Alright, then settle in and start looking around.
Talk to their psychologist; you have recent trauma you should work out.
No. 168594 ID: 0fc814

Go to the armory to try and find a camera. Maybe there's some other cool shit there, too.
No. 168598 ID: 6aff0b

Yeah go check out the armory.
No. 168607 ID: e75a2f

Why are you checking out the armory when you can pull your own weapons right out of dreamworld if you want?

I mean ideas are cool and all, but as an adolescent male I'd assume your imagination outstrips any conventional weapon on the market.
No. 168618 ID: f98e0b
File 127198079862.png - (267.25KB , 800x600 , 162.png )

Dio meets the Armory Master, Glover, who apparently also acts as the quartermaster, blacksmith, and cook for everyone else. He asks after a camera and is given a blocky, utilitarian Clarity from ten years ago.
He's got this thing's great-great-grandkid at home, fully digital with line-scan and a rangefinder. This has flash and a button to press and that's it, but he's never been happier. It's better by far than his camera phone.
No. 168619 ID: f21281

Make sure you ask for film.
No. 168630 ID: d6cb21

Summoned stuff will dissapear eventually. Whats the point in having a taking a picture with a camera that will dissapear and take the picture with it?

Also, lets try and get a general feel for the surronding area and whats going on, we are new here after all.
No. 168658 ID: 40e75d

Depending on how much day you have left I think you should start scouting the forest, see if you can find more of those things.
No. 168680 ID: f98e0b
File 127198550653.png - (273.74KB , 800x600 , 163.png )

Dio inquires about the surrounding area and is introduced to Dijp, the scout, second-in-command, interrogator, cartographer, and janitor.

They're at the border outpost, which is unnamed.
It's just short of the Shai Mountains, which Dio was just climbing down, and is at Delv's border with their neighbors, the Vedre. They haven't been at war for seventy years, ever since the Delv took the Shai from them and they declare armistice. The Delv allow immigrants from Vedre, but the Vedre don't appreciate people trying to enter or leave their territory so Fort Eudrat pretty much fires on anyone unauthorized to cross the border, which includes most anyone besides merchants and officials.

Further back in Delv territory, the closest town is the trading hub of Qtra. Even further, toward the center of Delv, is their capitol city of Delva, but that is at least a week's walk.

It's around 5 PM. Dio doesn't think being alone in the forests of Shai at night is a good idea.
No. 168682 ID: 701a19

Hey, do you and Jai think you could retrieve the expert faster?
You could summon or requisition a cart, she could propel it, and you can use your powers to scout the area in front and around your path for both navigation and to prevent surprises.
If they were going to walk, then you can get there and back before the day is out.
No. 168753 ID: 3b6c92

You get your rooms taken care of yet?

And asked about maybe talking to the shrink yet? I can tell you, man, it'll probably help you out.
No. 168754 ID: 7524b0

Go talk to Deve and get those hotel rooms set up.
No. 168772 ID: d1210a

Say, has Jai's sense of being magically empowered increased, decreased or stayed the same with the elevation change? I mean, compared to arrival.
No. 168914 ID: 371e4a

Go and get two rooms. One for you and one for Jai.
No. 169019 ID: f98e0b
File 127206231846.png - (147.86KB , 800x600 , 164.png )

>"Born in 1264, this Vidder actor is as well known for his philanthropy in the Inner Elde cities as he is for his role as Jesse in the medical dramedy, Pins & Needles."
"Helder Turnspit."
"It's Helder Turnspit, lady."
>"Is it..."
"Hel-der Turn-spit."
>"Gerry Fiver?"
>"That is... INCORRECT! Sorry, Miss Tintia. The correct answer was Helder Turnspit."
"Told you."
>"Oh. Oh well that was my second guess."
"Fuck you. Anger mixed with pride at getting the right answer."
No. 169022 ID: f98e0b
File 127206241847.png - (129.14KB , 800x600 , 165.png )

Dio knocks on the door and hears a thunk and a grunt on the other side.

"Ow. Fuck. Surprise, and pain and frustration at the fucking lamp." says someone on the other side, and then, in a singsong voice, "Come in."
No. 169026 ID: 3b6c92

Well, what are you waiting for?
No. 169027 ID: 7524b0

In you go. "Having trouble with the lamp?"
No. 169030 ID: 0fc814

Enter cheerfully.

Introduce Jai and yourself to Deve. Ask for two rooms. Ask what's up with her vocal mannerism. Is she monotoning it, or is there also inflection?
No. 169037 ID: f98e0b
File 127206453599.png - (161.98KB , 800x600 , 166.png )

"Hi," says Dio, walking in. "Having trouble with the lamp?"
"Heya," says Deve. "I'll deal with it later. I will deal with you later, lamp. How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?"
"How many psychologists does it take to change a lightbulb?"
"How many?"
"Only one, but it really has to want to change. Hah. Shrink humor. I've heard about you guys. It's Jai, right?"
"Dio," says Dio. "That's Jai." He points her out.
"Rewinding," says Deve brightly. "It's Dio, right?"
"Right," says Dio.
"Hi, Dio and Jai," says Deve.

"Hi," says Jai, uncertainly. "What was with the saying your emotions out loud thing?"
"It's healthy to be emotionally open and honest, and vocal release is a good conduit," says Deve. "Weirds people out, though, for some reason, so it's best practiced alone. Getting off-track. Did you two want a room?"
"Two rooms, yeah," says Jai.
"I'll give you our best," says Deve. "Which, granted, pretty much just means that they don't have a giant hole knocked in the walls. I'm, ah, Deve, by the way, sharpshooter, carpenter, immigrant receptionist, and psych/morale/mental health officer. Though if you guys are in here asking for a room you probably already know that."

"Nice to meet you, Deve," says Dio.
"Right back at you," says Deve. "It's rare that we get Arcanopolitans who stay around for a room. Usually you guys head off for redder pastures. Your rooms'll be ready by tonight, I think. Just need to find some furniture that's not, you know, busted. If there's anything you need from me, don't hesitate to ask."
No. 169039 ID: 3b6c92

Ask (half-facetiously) about the apparent property damage epidemic these guys have. :B
No. 169041 ID: 7524b0

Hrm. Should we get counseling? Self-check current mental status.
No. 169042 ID: 0fc814

Say that everyone keeps acting shocked that you wouldn't leave ASAP. Do most visitors come on Alienation? Note that it's making you a little worried. Is it because it's too dangerous around here, or not dangerous enough?

This should hopefully steer the conversation towards awesome shit that needs doing around here.
No. 169046 ID: 40e75d

No offense Dio, but I really think you should get a private session and unload a little. To say the least your life has been a whirlwind of conflict and change lately, and talking to her might help just a little.

I'm not saying you need mental help, I'm just saying that talking about your problems might be a good idea, and you can't really do that with Jai since she is so closely involved in it all.
No. 169052 ID: 371e4a

Ask her if she has ever heard of anyone trying to train Kithiks, or anything about them using tools.
No. 169066 ID: 754d8d

Ask if there are any particularly odd side-effects for illusionists performing full sleep on the Arcane Plane.

Also, the Commandant left out another possibility: That the critters that assaulted you were being controlled, to a degree that they could force the Kithiks to move in ways they were not meant for. After all, the one you were entombing managed to flee successfully despite being unable to breathe normally.
No. 169070 ID: f98e0b
File 12720699067.png - (203.56KB , 800x600 , 167.png )

"Actually, uh, could I maybe talk to you?" asks Dio.
"Like now?" asks Deve.
"Sure," says Dio.
"Usually I work on an appointment basis," says Deve. "But hey. Why not. I don't have anyone else 'till Euraeus in a couple hours. Help me carry some shit upstairs and I'm all yours."
"I'll go get introduced to everyone else," Jai says. "See you later, Dio?"
"Sure," says Dio.

Deve pressgangs Dio into hauling some of the heavier stuff, "as treatment". As they walk, he asks her stuff.
"Do you know of any side-effects to material creatures sleeping on the Arcane Plane? Like, weird dreams?"
"Nope," says Deve, shifting a couple of the boxes to get a better grip.
"So have you heard of anyone training kithik to be intelligent? Or to use tools?"
"Tools? Oh yeah, there was a fascinating study done about them and how they can use sharp rocks as boring tools to get into tough bark where the good grubs are when there's not enough normal prey around. Cool stuff."
"I'm talking about like crossbows."
"Huh," says Deve. "Haven't heard of that. They'd probably just squish the grubs, anyway. That was facetious, by the way. Why do you ask? Did one of them shoot you?"
"Yeah," says Dio.
"That was supposed to be facetious too," frowns Deve. "Well. That's not cool."

"It's why I'm sticking around," says Dio. "Frankly I'm surprised that more alienating arcanopolitans haven't. This place seems nice enough. Is it because it's too dangerous here?"
"More like too boring," shrugs Deve. "A new face (turn of phrase) like yours is just about the most exciting we've seen around here in a month. Most vidders just pass right through onto the Delv cities. Want to see all the skyscrapers or get mail-order Qal brides or whatever. Okay, so lemme ask a question. How old are you, again?"
"Wow. You're like, a qal baby. That's like forty in Qal years, though, right?"
"I wrote a thesis on Material Plane intimacy. It's fascinatingly complex to Qal, I tell you. So two rooms for you and Jai, huh? The way I understand it, vidder dating can be pretty awkward. Have you two not gotten to the physical point in your relationship yet?"
No. 169072 ID: 371e4a

Inform her that Jai is just a friend. Your partner is off in the material plane on her own alienation.

You know this could be an ideal moment to talk about your childhood. She will keep it confidential and sometimes it's easier to open up to strangers than friends.
No. 169088 ID: 7524b0

"You're right. It is complex stuff, Vidder relationships. We've been friends for a long time, but I've only hit puberty recently so the physical part never 'clicked'. I met another girl... so now apparently I'm conflicted, according to my stupid subconscious."
No. 169105 ID: 620bfb

No conflicted at all, Jai is a bro.
No. 169115 ID: 7a7cd0

And we're totally aiming for non-gay brosex
No. 169119 ID: 0fc814

Say you're not dating, though you had a vivid and fucked up dream implying you should be.
No. 169136 ID: f98e0b
File 127207544813.png - (252.72KB , 800x600 , 168.png )

"Okay, Dio." says Deve. "The military budget didn't have room for a big black couch, so you'll have to use the bed." She casually tosses a large stuffed animal off it and pulls up a chair. "Make yourself comfortable. Take off the mask, if it's not awkward. It's good to see face-to-face for this sort of thing."

Dio obeys and lies on the couch. Deve settles in her chair and pulls out a pencil and pad. "Okey doke."
"What now?"
"Now? Go ahead and talk about whateve," says Deve. "I'm listening.

"Okay," says Dio. "You're right. It is complex stuff, Vidder relationships. We've been friends for a long time, but I've only hit puberty recently so the physical part never 'clicked'. I met another girl... so now apparently I'm conflicted, according to my stupid subconscious."
"Mhm. You mentioned dreams, earlier. Has your stupid subconscious contacted you through that medium? Is that why you asked?"
Dio nods, and tells her about the dream.
"Okay. So clearly you're going through changes. It's fully natural. Dijp the scout only recently exited that stage in his life, and Euraeus is around the same stage developmentally as you are, in Qal terms.
"Now the change has been complicated a bit, in your case, by the presence of two girls, both of whom you seem to have a healthy relationship with and both of whom you're at least on a subconscious level attracted to. Is the attraction mostly physical, or is there an emotional connection on both ends?"
No. 169142 ID: 0fc814

Jai is awesome and you've thought this for years, so yes. Stress that you've both agreed not to go anywhere with this.

At least until you're back home and Dahlia can compete fairly.
No. 169155 ID: e2aba8

so tottaly dont mention dahlia is a mob boss daughter that can have you for dinner if you break her heart.

and that you connects with her even despite of that.
No. 169160 ID: f98e0b
File 127207713257.png - (250.45KB , 800x600 , 170.png )

"Jai's awesome," says Dio. "but we have both agreed that we're not taking it anywhere. Not until I'm back home, anyway."
"Which is where Dahlia's waiting," nods Deve. "I take it you haven't been intimate with either of them."
"Hm? No."

"Still a virgin?"
"Uh. Yeah."
"Well that just makes the choice all the more difficult, then," says Deve. "if I'm remembering right, the first time has a lot of importance among the vidder. So you want to make this decision at a juncture where you can be with both girls and judge their merits based on more than just proximity.

"But at the same time, the little voice in your head tells you your body is ready and rearing to go, and you're worried the stuff going on up here" she taps her head "and here" she puts a hand on her heart "is going to be too affected by the fella down here" she gestures downward with her pencil "and it's all distracting you from, well, everything else, namely an emotionally and physically demanding Alienation you need all your focus for, which you can't give if you're horny."
"Sounds accurate," says Dio.
"Well," sighs Deve. "I'd know what could help you out if you were a Qal, but I hesitate to suggest it to you right now, since vidders are a bit less straightforward."
No. 169163 ID: 1ac39d

No. 169165 ID: 701a19

"I know what you're thinking, and I'm not about to do that."

Nervelock penis + greater glamor = Virtual Dahlia
No. 169166 ID: d6fef9

No. 169167 ID: 7524b0

Yeah that sounds about right.
No. 169169 ID: d1210a

If you do sleep with Jai, even if she doesn't show it (no guarantee you'd be so lucky), you are going to hurt her just as a result of how close the two of you have already become. Then there is the dad, the PROTECTIVE MAFIA DON DAD, don't want him pissed you hurt his little girl's feelings.

Beyond such pragmatic concerns, consider how much emotional bonding you have formed with Dahlia in such a short time. This make the relationship fragile, relative to your status with Jai right now.

Llong story short, way better for all three of you to wait, decide later. Make it your post-Alienation Alienation, if that makes sense. A thing you must do.... AFTER you deal with this Alienation.

I still vote Dahlia though.
No. 169175 ID: 620bfb

Jai is a bro, and Dahlia is waiting just like you are. I have no idea what she's going to suggest and it'll probably be odd seeing as how Qal seem to be more open and straightforward in their dealings.
No. 169185 ID: f98e0b
File 127208011968.png - (251.31KB , 800x600 , 171.png )

"Masturbate?" asks Dio.
"You don't do that on your own? What kind of teenage boy are you?"
"Threesome?" asks Dio.
"If you can pull that off you really don't need my help."
"What, then?" asks Dio.
"Well," says Deve carefully, sucking in a mouthful of air and exhaling, "I could always hop into bed with you and pop your cherry."
No. 169187 ID: 701a19

"Ah, no, but thanks for the offer."
No. 169188 ID: 7524b0

Bury your head in the pillow and scream.
No. 169189 ID: 3b6c92

That's pretty... forward.

No. 169191 ID: 6834bc

I bet it's an honor to screw an Arcanopolis mage.
Maybe an honor Dio doesn't want to be part of?
No. 169192 ID: d1210a

'You did mention Qal being more straightforward, wasn't quite paying that the proper amount of attention.

...Yeah, as much as part of me wants to say yes, naw, I don't think that would help at all. And if that was just a joke, man you run some loopy therapy, but whatev.

Any advice for how to at least keep this out of my mind, at least until I can be sure I'm being fair to both of them?'
No. 169193 ID: d6fef9

Dahlia is waiting for you man, doing this wouldn't be cool. Bear in mind, if you two weren't already that serious I'd say go for it, and if you did anyways it wouldn't be absolutely horrible for you. Still, you don't want to deal with that guilt.

...Maybe a blowjob would settle the need, and still technically allow you to wait for Dahlia. Even if it is sex, it's not "all the way", and still leaves that special first time experience to be had. Make it a 69 and you've got extra practice as well.
No. 169200 ID: a949d1

Whut? Wouldn't that defeat the point, then it just becomes a lose lose situation rather than a gain and possible loss?

Also, heard knew Qal were direct but DAMMN...

Wait.. isn't this against psychological practice or something? Exploiting your position as a trusted advisory for personal gain?
No. 169203 ID: 701a19

No. If it wasn't a big deal than Dahlia would have done that. Since she didn't we can conclude that it is a big deal.

Dio, you're just going to have to tough this out.
No. 169211 ID: bcf25c


...Please tell me that lump in the robes is his knee.
No. 169212 ID: d6fef9

Oh not necessarily, she just has a certain desire for how things should progress. As for this, she probably wouldn't approve, but what matters is how Dio feels about it. It takes care of the main aspect of the problem away while still saving that better, more intimate experience for her.

If Dio would still feel guilty about it, then it's no good. Just saying it's an option he should consider.
No. 169219 ID: f98e0b
File 127208274070.png - (190.78KB , 800x600 , 172.png )

Of course it's his-
what the-
"Wh-" says Dio.
He pauses.
"N- I- what?"

"If you were a Qal," says Deve patiently. "I'd suggest that you need to, for a time at least, calm your raging hormones and focus on the task at hand, especially if it's as important as it is for you. When Dijp felt the same stirrings you did, he and I came in here, and made sure that his first time was as healthy and nurturing as possible. Same with Euraeus. He's going through it all right now, so once or twice a day he makes an appointment and we work it out. It's not difficult to recognize sexual repression, and it's even less difficult to fix it. Hell, anyone can visit as long as they make an appointment. It's one of the many reasons I'm here, after all. I've got a ten-year degree studying social and military psychology, full sniper certification with crossbows, springloaders, and bows, and I'm a certified Courtesan for the Delv Armed Forces. The Commandant's a regular, since he's so stressed out all the time. I've been visited by all six of the other guys, at one point or another. There's a reason the Psych/Morale officer is the only lady, and there's a reason the psychologist is also a trained sex worker. You'd be surprised the good a healthy sexual experience can do a soldier."

"It seems exploitative."
"Maybe," says Deve. "I do get to hang with a bunch of fairly sexy soldiers, and it pays pretty well, but keep in mind that due to our more communal society, where offspring are cared for by the state rather than the parent, as well as the fact that we lay eggs rather than carry young for nine months, the Qal are much more open and forward, sexually. I can tell you the guys enjoy me being here as much as I do."

"Well, ah, thank you but no thank you."
"Okay. Well, since you're a vidder, I'd honestly say that all you can do is work through the feelings you're feeling right now, simply remember that everyone goes through what you're going through, and maybe whack off before you go to bed.
"Now one thing you're going through that many don't, and something I think I can actually help you with, is killing. The first kill can have a lasting effect, and if you haven't worked through it it can be a problem. Have you killed anyone yet?"
No. 169221 ID: 701a19

"Yes, and it was... Traumatic, to say the least."
No. 169222 ID: a949d1

Yeah... we actually did that one with the other girl. It was self-defense but yeah. Already hopped that fence.
No. 169224 ID: e2aba8

asides a raging boner today? yes.

wow a state whore. who could say.
No. 169226 ID: 0b2a05

Oh yeah. Tell her about that. Don't mention the arker thing.
No. 169228 ID: 7524b0

Hey what's that purple poster on the wall anyway?
No. 169238 ID: 23c8f1

tell her, do mention the arker thing.
No. 169242 ID: 23c8f1

Oh, Dio, remember one more thing. You're still a virgin if it's just blowjays. I wouldn't pass this opportunity up.
No. 169258 ID: 23c8f1

Even better, I have the perfect idea. Conjure an illusion of yourself, then change around a bit to where it's a chick. Then fuck it! It's basically fapping but better! I'd do it.
No. 169262 ID: a949d1

That depends on the culture and even on the subgroup or person within the culture.
No. 169275 ID: f98e0b
File 127208493844.png - (251.00KB , 800x600 , 173.png )

"Yeah, that happened to me already," says Dio. "It was-hey. What's that poster on the wall mean?"
"Promise not to lose all the remaining professional respect you have for me?"
"I believe the direct translation is 'hang in there baby'."
There is a pause as they both consider this. Then Deve snorts and starts laughing. Dio can't help but join in.

"Okay. Okay. Yes, I have killed someone. A member of a cult who attacked me and Dahlia. We both ended up killing them all in self-defense."
"That is about the healthiest way you can break into the biz," says Deve, impressed. "Self-defense against an antagonistic figure to save the people you care about, and going through it with someone else is always better than toughing it alone."

"Still got the shakes from it," admits Dio.
"Then it's a good thing it was so well-motivated," says Deve. "Otherwise the backlash could have been extremely nasty. Looks you've got yourself a good soul, Dio. You and Dahlia both.
"What I advise to make it easier is for you to practice on gradually more realistic targets, maybe get them moving around, summon up illusions of things to hit, that sort of thing. Build up a callus to killing. Just make sure you keep that sensitivity inside you intact at the same time. Don't do anything or kill anyone you would regret later, and talk about what you do with people you trust. It's a fine line you're going to end up walking, Dio, but if it's any consolation, warriors with consciences are some of the best.

"Is there anything else you want to talk to me about?"
No. 169276 ID: f21281

Oh snap Dio she's taking her jacket off and subtlety showing off all those curves that she has oh god don't stare at her ass Dio DON'T STARE AT HER ASS goddamn look at those thighs could crush a melon between them.

Mmm. Melons. Bouncy perky round melons~
No. 169282 ID: 23c8f1

Well the smart thing to do is not fuck an alien for the first time, but the aweseome thing to do would be to fuck an alien for the first time, so...
No. 169284 ID: 0b2a05

What's that doll thing on the floor?
No. 169287 ID: f21281

...new quest goal. Turn Dio into the Magi version of Captain Kirk.
No. 169289 ID: d6fef9

...Still recommending oral.
No. 169292 ID: 701a19

I think that's about it for now.
Text Dahlia about the chaser with a crossbow and ask her what she and Pyramus think. Talk to her properly later tonight.
No. 169293 ID: a949d1

Nah I think we're good. Not much in the way of nightmares. It did finally set in my Occulus though I suppose.
No. 169310 ID: 7524b0

(psst that's a flashback to when she's counseling the other Qal)
No. 169313 ID: f98e0b
File 12720864831.png - (248.74KB , 800x600 , 174.png )

"I'm good, I think. What's with the stuffed animal?"
"Emotional conduits, 'member? Never hurts to have a good snuggle with Dr. Peckies."
"Thanks, Deve."
"No problem, Dio. Come back any time."
Dio gets on his mask and leaves, feeling a little better about things in general.
No. 169315 ID: f98e0b
File 127208665156.png - (249.44KB , 800x600 , 175.png )

Dio pokes his head back in for a moment. "Um. Just for future consideration. Do you do oral?"
She adopts a look of mock outrage. "What kind of Jezebel would I be if I didn't? Any way you want it."
"Okay." He leaves.

He pokes his head back in. "I don't want it."
"'Course not."
"See ya."
No. 169316 ID: f98e0b
File 127208665834.png - (245.42KB , 800x600 , 176.png )

No. 169321 ID: d1210a

Dio, either get in the room or move on, don't encourage indecisiveness in yourself, it could get you killed.
No. 169323 ID: f21281

...northern sergal?
No. 169324 ID: a949d1

Moving on... moving on...

Let's go get on the case of them tool using animals what are not supposed to be using tools.
No. 169326 ID: 1ac39d

let's just go to your room now. beat one out before you go to sleep so you don't have a wet dreams.
No. 169327 ID: e3f578

Oh are we controlling Deve for a moment? I see you thinking Deve with that pencil on your chin. Penny for your thoughts? Or are you just thinking about your plane domination plan, you devious minx you?
No. 169332 ID: 701a19

[Smacks Dio on the frontal lobes with a rolled-up GUILTpaper]
No. 169334 ID: 0b2a05

It would help you with the whole pent-up urges thing, but comeon man, you're a frickin' illusionist. You can control yourself, and think of how great it'll be to save yourself for when everything is absolutely perfect.
No. 169336 ID: 7524b0

Move on. Dahlia is important to you. This would technically be cheating, even if there's no emotional investment.
No. 169356 ID: f95872

Indeed; Dahlia said she'd wait. It would be unconscionably rude to not offer her the same courtesy.
No. 169485 ID: 0fc814

Dio: Wait a few seconds near the door for Deve to announce her inner feelings on the matter.
No. 169496 ID: 2eac65

If you really need to do it, make a copy of yourself. It's not cheating if you do it with yourself.
No. 169508 ID: f98e0b
File 127212874759.png - (190.62KB , 800x600 , 177.png )

Dio practices his Blindness and consults with the Commandant until around 7, when he and Jai meet up and go see if Deve's got the rooms ready.
"Yep," she says proudly. "No mildew on the sheets or anything. They're right downstairs, 304 and 305."

"Sorry. Am I interrupting anything?" asks Euraeus, stepping into the hallway.
"Yes and I'll never forgive you," says Deve. "Come on in, Euraeus. Be with you in a sec." She turns to Dio and Jai. "Euraeus and I have an agreement that every time he apologizes for something unnecessarily I have the right to be meaninglessly pissed about it."
"I'm gonna pay for this, aren't I," says Euraeus, grinning.
"Hell yeah you are," says Deve, smacking his ass as he enters her office. "Right after we talk a little more about your childhood for a bit."
"Aww, come on."
"Question not my methods, ya Pee Eff Cee. Enjoy the rooms, guys. They are the ritz, or close enough for the border, anyway. Ciao." She tosses her jacket on the knob. He sees her unbuckling her breastplate before she shuts the door.
No. 169509 ID: f98e0b
File 127212876773.png - (182.59KB , 800x600 , 178.png )

“So. The psychologist and the newbie, huh?” says Jai.
“Not quite,” says Dio.
“She’s the morale officer.”
“Do you mean she-“
“With all the guys?”
“I imagine.”
“Huh,” says Jai, looking at the door. “Did you-“
“Seems kind of unfair there isn’t a dude around,” mutters Jai. “Don’t look at me like that. Just for like a back massage or something.”
“I bet she gives pretty good massages,” says Dio.

“Anyway, I’m going to bed. I think Dijp wanted to see you. He’s the scout? He’s up on the parapets right now but it can wait till tomorrow if you like. ‘Night, Dio.”
“’Night, Jai,” says Dio as she goes downstairs.
No. 169510 ID: 797482

Dummy. You could've offered a back massage :p
No. 169511 ID: 6d5be7

Go meet with the scout. See what he wants.
No. 169512 ID: 3b6c92

May as well see want Dijp wants.

How do you pronounce that, anyway? "Deep"?
No. 169518 ID: 0fc814

Maybe there's a new development about the Kithiks. Go see the guy.
No. 169520 ID: 754d8d

Consider seeing Deve later about the crossbow of suck the critter had. She may notice details that the commandant did not, given her specialized training.

Meanwhile, if you aren't feeling too sleepy, see Dijp. I'm sure it gets lonely up on the walls.
No. 169527 ID: 0fc814

Also, ask someone if Kithiks lack windpipes, or have some other feature that'd make Entomb not work.
No. 169556 ID: f98e0b
File 127213642762.png - (248.48KB , 800x600 , 179.png )

Dio heads up to the battlements. Djip is there, gazing into the darkening sky with a monocular.
"'Sgood, mateling?" says Djip.
"Hi," says Dio. "You wanted to see me?"
"Struth," says Djip. "Hicked yourselves in the Shais early up, aye?"
"Camped you up in the mountains, yeah?"
"Yes?" says Dio.
"Mmm," says Djip, looking back up at the mountains. "Went you to Rthura peak 'fore you hicked and went this'n? Hell'd the forward outpost in the foots?"
"Uh, I can't actually-"
"Didja stop off in Rthura peak? Base camp, Delv Qal there?" asks Djip.
No. 169561 ID: 0b2a05

...Thero, any way you can help with the understanding of this guy?
No. 169563 ID: 7524b0

"I didn't go to the peak, no. Why do you ask?"
No. 169564 ID: 6d5be7

That is quite an interesting dialect. Tell him that you didn't stop by the Qal camp.
No. 169566 ID: 23c8f1

No, we haven't been up there but we were planning to. We decided to get supplies down here first.
No. 169567 ID: 0fc814

No. You thought about climbing the mountain, but decided to head straight here instead. Why?
No. 169586 ID: 701a19

Wait, even better idea.
Thero, can you visit whoever is asleep at that outpost and see how they're doing?
No. 169603 ID: f98e0b
File 127213853092.png - (270.60KB , 800x600 , 180.png )

The guy's speaking in a Dulan Qal dialect, says Thero. It's a northern tribe. I've spent a while in their dreams. Reckon I can clear it up a bit for you, yeah..
"No, I didn't go up to the base camp, why?"
"'s no kosh," mutters Djip."Espy a' these," he says, tossing Dio the monoculars.
That's not good. Look through these.
Dio puts it up to his oculus.
"Gandrat a'th peak," says Djip. "Rthura foots." Take a look at the foothills on Rthura peak.
Dio does so. The bottom drops out of his stomach. A black plume is rising from the mountain. Dio can see a dull red glow coloring it.
"Combs(comrades) at the 'post ain't chatting," says Djip. "No clacks(letters, no phone, no flag([signals[/b]). Godda shit feeling about this. 'Ma thinking kithik."
"Spirits," breathes Dio. "How big was that outpost?"
"Ten, twenny Qal," says Djip. "Not 'Leets (elites) like we is, but shee-yit. This'n not kosh. 'Ma telling the commandant. Gessum sleep, mateling. We're all gonna need it."
No. 169604 ID: 701a19

Thero, see if you can visit their dreams to check for survivors.
If anybody is left alive then we call in for air transport and air support.
No. 169612 ID: 0fc814

There's a thought. What kind of airlift is available?
No. 169613 ID: 5a9b32

>practices his Blindness
Oh ho ho ho I have learned a new euphemism

Jai could probably have a look around up there pretty easily by flying. But, say, Dio - you can manipulate people's senses. Can you manipulate your own, theoretically? Say, put your sight and hearing into an illusory copy of yourself and send it scouting?
No. 169615 ID: 850bda

You're in for some interesting times Dio. Tomorrow you should ask the commandant how to best integrate you and Jai into their forces.
No. 169619 ID: f98e0b
File 127214359431.png - (241.57KB , 800x600 , 181.png )

Thero can't move any faster than Dio can, so it'd take a couple weeks for him to get to the fort. There's no way Dio can imbue his consciousness in an illusion and have it scout out the mountain, either. No way he can think of, at least.
"Is there any kind of way we could airlift them out?" asks Dio.
"Flyin'? Feh," says Dijp. "Sprout flappers and head up yourn own, ain't no other way to fly. No fearing. They's strong soldiers vers a buncha kithik with pokers. They're okay."
"Okay. I guess I'm going to bed," says Dio. "Night."
"Night, Dio," says Djip.
As Dio leaves the parapet, he hears him mutter to himself, "They're okay. They're okay."
No. 169620 ID: e75a2f

Now's your chance to end this Alienation quick-like.

Go over there and wreck their shit.
No. 169622 ID: d1210a

No. 169623 ID: 1ac39d

not yet. dio has been up all day and is tired now. after a rest he will be good to go.
No. 169624 ID: 0fc814

No flying machines? Is this a property of the Arcane environment, or do the Qal just not build them for whatever reason?

Also, realistically, spending a week to get back to the base of the mountain, then more time to climb it, seems a bad idea. At least wait until morning for the commander to offer his professional opinion on the matter.

Try to get some sleep. If your subconscious keeps trying to sex you up, counter with more conventional nightmare fare. ( http://www.tgchan.org/kusaba/questarch/src/125007054762.png )
No. 169625 ID: 850bda

Sounds like he already knows the truth. You're not going to be able to get there in time to do anything useful. Go down and sleep and tomorrow figure out how you and Jai can best augment the streangths of the Qal.
No. 169631 ID: e2aba8

well we need to make a scout operation anyway. if you could set up with everyone in the post what you can actualy do/build, it would be better to decice on what to do.
No. 169721 ID: f98e0b
File 127216267913.png - (125.95KB , 800x600 , 182.png )

Dio goes to bed in 304, forgetting that it's directly below Deve's. If he listens he can hear talking, laughing, and the rhythmic groaning of bedsprings from upstairs.
He distracts himself by texting with Dahlia.

dahl are you awake
>ofcourse its like 3 in the afternoon.
not in arcane

"mmn. slow down a little."

>o...so watcha doin?
lying in bed annoying u in the middle of ur alienation
>its cool. me and pyramus are just on a skiff right now anyway.
ur in elde?
>yea i wanted to get back in touch w/ my culture n stuff.

"i'm still interested in your experiences with your drill sergeant. i think how hard he pushed you directly relates to aah how often you apologize. care to vent about him some more?"

hows that working out
>not a lot of culture. whole lot of sand. pyramus loves it tho he keeps making plains of glass with fire then smashing them. hows the alienation going on ur end? have you found something extraordinary to do yet?
No. 169722 ID: 7524b0

"I think so. It seems like a neighboring Qal tribe is training some kind of semi-intelligent local species, then sending them to do battle for them so they don't break armistice."
No. 169723 ID: d6fef9

Err, it's gonna be hard to be honest and not have her worry. Don't tell untruths, just a lie of omission: mention the crossbow wielding kithik and that you're looking into it, but say nothing of the attack on the other outpost.

I wouldn't mention your upstairs neighbor either for that matter.
No. 169727 ID: 7524b0

I disagree. We SHOULD mention the upstairs neighbor.
No. 169731 ID: 0fc814

Definitely this.

...maybe complain about how the morale officer offers sex but you can't have any. She seems like the kind of person who'd laugh at your plight instead of feeling offended or whatever.
No. 169732 ID: 1ac39d

but phrase it like 'and i told the moral officer here about a dream i had involving... things. and i confirmed how straight forward the qual are, just came out and said 'wanna fuck' and i was like 'hubluh wha?!?!'
No. 169733 ID: 701a19

"They ambushed us. No big deal, but Jai says them using crossbows and stuff is like coming home to find your dog sitting on your couch and reading a newspaper."
No. 169743 ID: f98e0b
File 127216638484.png - (108.01KB , 800x600 , 183.png )

yeah i think so. someone is training kithik to use weapons and i think theyre making an army
>whats a kithik?
think a shadow monkey with big claws. one shot a crossbow at me.

"uh, are you sure we should be discussing my drill sergeant right nnnnow? it's kind of killing the mood."
"childhood first, doggystyle second, pfc."
"ok. sorry."
"there's that sorry you are unforgiven. that's it, i'm getting on top."

>oh shit are you ok?
yeah the coat pyramus gave me deflected it just fine. jai says its a problem tho. like ur dog reading a newspaper
>ack. dont get hurt. how are the qal?

"so you're saying it wasn't the namecalling that hurt so much as the fact that any pride he may have had in you was ooh withheld?"
"i feel like if he'd displayed a little more positive emotion he'd have been more approachable, y'know? i could have felt i was doing some things right."
"do you feel like that with the commandant? should i talk to him?"
"no, i mean the commandant's great, he's really a paternal figure to me spirits deve your ass is so perfect gah faster"

they seem good at their jobs. scary forward, tho.
hold on let me try to approach this sensitively
>take your time.
the morale officer boinks people. its kind of keeping me up

There's a pause before Dahlia responds.

>shes a whore? youre in a fort with its own whore?
No. 169744 ID: 3b6c92

"Well I didn't know that when I got here, but... kinda yeah."

What else are you gonna say to that, y'know?
No. 169745 ID: 7524b0

"Apparently it's normal in their culture."
No. 169746 ID: 1ac39d

'apparently it a government job here. as in they pay her to boink everyone and they take care of any kids that may happen'
No. 169747 ID: 0fc814

"weirdest part: only seven qal here. everyone's got like 8 jobs. scout/watchman/etc; quartermaster/blacksmith/cook/arms-master; psychologist/administrator/morale-officer/morale-officer-wink-wink. so that jobs really important to them

look the important part is that im feeling really really lonely and a chick is offering me unlimited free sex and i turned her down because shes not you"
No. 169749 ID: 6834bc

"They are very open. Sexually.
I didn't do anything, but it's kind of hard to sleep when they're doing it right above my room while talking about their childhood."

"On the upside, it sounds like he had a nice drill sergeant, I guess"
No. 169756 ID: 9cf63d

Apparently all of their military psych officers are are women trained and known for their 'bedside manner.'
No. 169757 ID: f98e0b
File 127216855314.png - (111.80KB , 800x600 , 184.png )

its a normal thing in their society. weirdest part: only seven qal here w/ like 8 jobs each. scout/watchman/etc; quartermaster/blacksmith/cook/arms-master; psychologist/administrator/morale-officer/morale-officer-wink-wink. so that jobs really important to them to unwind

No reply.

look the important part is that im feeling really really lonely and a chick is offering me unlimited free sex and i turned her down because shes not you

"how was it for you?"
"hey who's getting paid to ask the questions here?"
"sorr- you are."
"there we go. i think we had a breakthrough tonight about sergeant jerkwad. and it was great, euraeus. don't second guess yourself. you're cute. wanna cuddle for a while and then we'll talk about your brother? okay. wow. that came out all kinds of wrong. rewinding."

>really? so she boinks people but you have not been doing the boinking?
>and youve just sat and listened while she offered to screw you and banged everyone else?
her office happens to be right above my room. on the bright side i am learning a lot about the childhoods of the soldiers here.
>sprts, dio. i dont know why i didnt trust you there for a second. might be veltkrick family greed. sorry.
its cool
>im sorry i didnt sleep with you.
dahlia its fine really. you dont have to compete with anyone, texts Dio, hoping it's true.
>if pyramus wasnt across from me right now trying to get the food car staff to arm wrestle him id take some pics to make you miss me a little less.
haha sounds like pyramus.

They text until Dio can't keep his eye open any longer, then he goes to bed, listening to the lovemaking upstairs and the winds coming off the Shai Mountains the creatures outside waiting for him in the night.
No. 169758 ID: f98e0b
File 127216858470.png - (2.31KB , 800x600 , 185.png )

And for the first time in his life Dio feels true loneliness and true fear.
No. 169760 ID: 2eac65

If you need someone to hug, just remember, you'll always have yourself.
No. 169761 ID: 701a19

Oh, get over it.
All you need to do is kill a few stupid animals and then you can go see Dahlia yourself. You need to have superior mental control to be a dream mage, so use that control to keep yourself under control.
No. 169762 ID: e2aba8

blogs dammit, you forgot to tell her of your hawt xxx dream with her.

also you should consider a spell to bonk each other in your dreams.
No. 169764 ID: 0fc814

Continue feeling sad, but in such a way that sleep catches you by surprise, instead of forcing you to stay awake and feel crappy tomorrow.
No. 169771 ID: 40e75d

Aaaw. Dio, it's not that bad.

I know things were going great, and now everything has been turned upside down, but you are more than capable of handling all this. Dahl might be a reality away, but you've got Jai backing you up and this whole situation should be a breeze for a mage of your capabilities. You have nothing to fear.

If you really can't sleep, why not let half your mind rest and do a summoning with the other? I'm sure there's something you could summon that would be useful for this sort of situation. Maybe something small that could do some quick scouting for you.
No. 169772 ID: 1ac39d

or make sure you get the star right this time and get a dream-thing.
No. 169774 ID: 0fc814

That's a good point. A summon of some kind could be really helpful. Maybe you could give a recap on what options are available in that regard?
No. 169779 ID: 2eac65

The alienation is supposed to be a life-changing experience. We can't rush it.

I disagree on summoning. Given what happened last time, trying it while half-asleep sounds like a very bad idea.
No. 169780 ID: 1ac39d

well not the summoning but maybe get started on drawing the rune thing until he thinks he is tired enough to actually sleep. then in the morning we get it all the way done and then triple check it, then activate it.
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