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910512 No. 910512 ID: 891b91

Chapter 0: >>/questarch/886861

Discussion: >>/questdis/123379
Wiki: https://tgchan.org/wiki/Dead_Dust
Inventory: https://tgchan.org/wiki/Dead_Dust/Inventory

Yesterday was a blur. They ended up keeping you in the infirmary overnight, so they could monitor your health; between the frequent examinations and the steady trickle of well-wishers showing up to ask how you were doing, you didn't get much opportunity to make sense of your current situation, let alone ask any of the growing number of questions floating around in your head. Of all the things puzzling you about this place, the people themselves are the greatest mystery. They've been friendly and welcoming, sure; but sometimes it feels like they find you familiar in some way. They keep calling you Sigarzghar,, too, and you have no clue why.

But these confusions don't trouble you -- you find the others more worrying, such as why you were in a coma for three days, or why all your posessions are missing from your pockets. You wonder how long you'll be stuck in this place, but you don't have much in the way of leads to figure out where else to go -- there're Delaney and Quincy over on Gansett shelf, the tentacle twins on the Concourse, and... that's about it. You're not sure how you'd get to either of those places from here, so you certainly feel stuck. Right now, more than anything else, you need answers.

You suppose that's why you're waiting here. They discharged you from the infirmary shortly after you awoke this morning, and led you here, telling you that Cider has invited you to her quarters to discuss a few things. You get the impression she's in charge around here; surely she can help you make sense of why you're here and how you arrived, and perhaps what to do next. At the moment there's already a visitor in there with her, judging from the muffled sounds of conversation; you wager it's been 20 minutes already, and you hope it isn't going to take much longer.
1297 posts omitted. Last 100 shown. Expand all images
No. 962837 ID: 0fae41

Is your room on the ground floor? Maybe you should approach from the window first.
No. 962838 ID: c84ff4

Well this is awkward we either stay invisible or we go in naked.
No. 962842 ID: b1b4f3

I guess that's Mint in there, huh? Turn off invis, open door a little, ask Mint to hand you some clothes.

At this point I'm pretty sure Mint is a former blade-wielder who got her blade stolen, and that gave her amnesia like the other people here, but she still has the ability to resist Cider's blade like you can.
I wonder if Millie is immune too?
No. 962844 ID: e51896

Is the door locked? now that I look at it, it doesn't seem like there are any keyholes on the door or knob... privacy must not be an important factor here. Can we quietly peek in without making a sound to determine whether to enter with invisibility or not? Worse case scenario, Mint might be getting attacked.

One thing for sure, someone is suffering in our dorm room and might need our help.

Good idea, but I believe that it was mentioned we went up a flight of stairs before reaching our dorm room. It might not be ground level. But if it is ground level, I'll support if we can't peek in without making a sound.
No. 962846 ID: 10c408

Tap on the door, quietly ask if it's Mint in there and if so can she please pass you some clothing.

Stop being invisible, but only after double-checking that no one is watching, especially any cameras.
No. 962853 ID: b34040

Looking in the window might be good if that's convenient. Otherwise, I don't really see any way to keep our entrance from being noticed unless she's completely oblivious. Anyone not either working with cider or lined up out from of her building is going to be noted as being resistant to her powers, which is going to mark you as a probable blade user quickly. However... I don't think she's working with cider, which means she must be resistant too. I don't think she'll sell us out.
No. 962859 ID: 10c408

I think it's a bit more likely that due to whatever limitations cider has for her blade (barring stamina and only being able to control something less than the entire shelf), Mint has simply gone beneath notice of cider and the search teams.
No. 962861 ID: 015bf2

If Cider's Blade isn't working on her properly this confirms Mint IS special in some way, but not way precisely. If she's still in here, crying, she is unlikely to have been the third signal earlier as well (thought she could've just checked on the place and ran back to her room, avoiding pursuit).

Go un-invisible, sneakily enter the room and confirm Mint's status. Like, if she seems, well... coherent? Or in pain? Try to use your rhythm sense on her.

Do not ask for or wear clothes. You might need to go invisible again to return to the crowd or bathhouse before this is over. If she sees you, ask if she's okay and pretend to be a little freaked out as well (well 'pretend') by the whole situation.

Millie was in the chant crowd, so probably not.
No. 962862 ID: fb820f

Pull out your blade and cut this door in half!

Alternatively, enter the room visible and ask what the crying is for.
No. 962864 ID: 462cc1

Keep ourselves hidden, for now Cider is a suspect but also someone we should protect. At worst, she’s the killer and has an group of people under her control. At best she’s just using these people to protect herself. We’ll need to find the source of the unknown signal.
No. 962865 ID: a0dfd2


Do remember that Mint is sensitive to this stuff and probably went through The Wiggles or whatever it was that Q had called it back in the day -- you know, how the O-Town hobos would get real boozed up to not feel? -- which is very likely why she's crying at the moment.

If we're seeing everything go to wiggly nonsense, try to imagine what the only other person to ever remark about that must be experiencing.
No. 962866 ID: 462cc1

Oh shoot, realized I replied to the wrong image. >>962836

Stay hidden and take a small peek first.
No. 962871 ID: e225aa

Look before you leap. Make sure no one is around and Take a quiet peek through the door. She did say she would take a nap and we were told she had bad dreams and could be crying about that, or she might just be scared of how everyone is acting from Cider's power. But worst case scenerio, somebody might be crying over being attacked. Peeking in first should give us an idea.
No. 962885 ID: 417f73

May as well keep it simple. Turn visible, go in and see what's happening. If it's a bad situation, run. Otherwise, get dressed and find out what is wrong with Mint.
No. 962890 ID: 9c48ac

That seems unnecessarily complicated. I think she's probably like us: a blade wielder that got dusted and doesn't remember how to use it. but it still effects her perceptions and prevents her getting Cider'd.

agreed - especially since (afawk) she doesn't know how to use her blade or for that matter anything about what's happening.

I wonder if we can "wake" her like Omen did to us, and whether we should, if we can.

Anyway I'd say go visible, enter, and see where it goes. From there we could either reveal our abilities or pretend to be as confused as we would've been a couple hours ago, or bugger out invisibly if the situation is really bad without whoever's in there necessarily knowing how we did it, if we're quick enough.

(If we go in invisible, the first option is lost and the last becomes the foe likely knowing how, but not who - given that we can disguise ourselves, I would say our identity is the lesser secret, at the moment.)
No. 962907 ID: fb820f

So there's two decisions that we have to make here.
1. Let's say that it's Mint in there and that she's crying. Do we actually want to talk to Mint? If we do, we'd be revealing to her that we're not affected by Cider's power. If Mint knows or learns of Cider's power and then later tells others that we weren't affected by it, we could get in trouble.
2. Do we actually want to get our clothes? If we get them, it means we will no longer be able to use our powers. So if we get in trouble, there's no escape.

Note: It's impossible that Mint is the killer or the UNK2 signal because she said that she would take a nap. If she was in this room when we were at the spa, it would've been impossible for her to get to the spa after we woke up, considering how far the spa is from the dorms.

Is there actually any benefit in entering our room at this time? If we're worried about Mint, then wouldn't simply listening carefully to confirm that it's Mint's voice be enough? If she was sleeping most of the time, would we actually learn anything valuable from her? Other than that she's crying because of another nightmare or she's scared of all the undulations around?
No. 962937 ID: 891b91
File 158752201414.gif - (413.53KB , 1024x1024 , 1-053-1.gif )

>Is your room on the ground floor? Maybe you should approach from the window first.
The room is one story up -- for some reason the 100-level rooms aren't on the ground floor. It seems a bit nonsensical to you, but you guess they probably had a reason for it.

>Is the door locked? now that I look at it, it doesn't seem like there are any keyholes on the door or knob... privacy must not be an important factor here.
It only locks from the inside, you think.

Carefully, you grasp the doorknob and turn it as slowly as you can, trying to avoid making any noise. You manage to do so quietly, but as you push the door open the hinge lets out a loud creak.

Whoever was crying has gone silent. You poke your head through the door, but you don't see anyone.
No. 962938 ID: 3bcc4b

Things seem a little... wavier around here. Be careful and investigate the surroundings, since there may be some kind of Blade-related distortion.
No. 962939 ID: 015bf2

Yeah, you’ll want to get that oiled if you stay here.

The crier is either invisible like you orrr on top of the upper bed, probably. There’s no closets in here, right? Under the beds seems too narrow for someone to hide. Then again Mint was pretty slight and thin.
No. 962940 ID: cdabe3

there's something behind the bed, in the very back
No. 962943 ID: b1b4f3

Good catch, we can see the wiggle.

Tell Mint it's you, Penny- you're naked and need to get some clothes. Be visible, of course, and you know what she's already seen you naked, don't even hide it when you go in.
No. 962955 ID: e51896

Support, though She might not believe it is you if we just say your name and she might not answer. you might want to start out with something that only she and you knew and spoke about that nobody else does to make her understand it really is you and not somebody vicious trying to lure her out and cause her to run away, like mention her and your conversation about how Mint talked about how everything felt fuzzy to her and how everyone doesn't look human to you like you both did before.

Make sure no one is looking, go visible, and enter and close the door. Cover yourself and like >>962943 said, start out with: it's me, Penny- we talked about how everything feels fuzzy to you, and about how everyone doesn't feel human to me. I'm naked and need to get some clothes.
No. 962956 ID: 91ee5f

Make sure no one is looking and become visible. Make sure you also back away from the door so that you reduce the chances of Mint seeing you just appear out of nowhere!
No. 962959 ID: fd5772

I don't like this. Get out of there Penny! Get the hell out of there!
No. 962961 ID: b05d40

Part of me wants to stay invisible and sneak over to Mint behind the bed to see whats going on...

But I think she is just terrified of what is going on and Cider's power based off of her crying and hiding. I wonder since she feels fuzziness from everyone, would that mean she can strongly sense blade users powers, like Cider's and maybe ours as well? Might be bad to sneak towards on her then and risk scaring her more if we sneak towards her while invisible.

Turn invisibility off, and stop disguising your signal so that you dont feel fuzzy to Mint to prove your Penny, and calmly and quietly call out to her and that you need help getting clothing.
No. 962963 ID: 10c408

turn visible, and quietly announce yourself to the bit of mint's head that you can see.
No. 962972 ID: e51896

Hey, out of curiosity before we do anything, can we check the chat room really quick and see if it updated? We don't even need to message anything, just check.
No. 962995 ID: 891b91
File 158754518931.gif - (285.67KB , 1024x1024 , 1-054-1.gif )

>Hey, out of curiosity before we do anything, can we check the chat room really quick and see if it updated? We don't even need to message anything, just check.
Out of curiosity, you take a quick look at the ethereal chat room, since it's been a little bit.
Casknell (cc45d0): hey new guy are you there
Triple-F (ff358f): Probably got herself killed... or I was right and she is the killer.
Casknell (cc45d0): noooo i need her
Triple-F (ff358f): What you need is to solve your own damned problems.
??? (abcb03): TYPHON
??? (abcb03): TYPHON
Triple-F (ff358f): Shut up.
??? (abcb03): WE LET IT HAPPEN
Triple-F (ff358f): Why do you do this?
Triple-F (ff358f): You scream at Typhon
Triple-F (ff358f): Every.
Triple-F (ff358f): Single.
Triple-F (ff358f): Day.
Triple-F (ff358f): But they never answer you, do they?
Triple-F (ff358f): Take the fucking hint.
Casknell (cc45d0): i miss when they talked normal instead of yelling all the time
Triple-F (ff358f): Heh, yeah.

...Well, that's quite the exchange, now isn't it.

You just barely spot someone hiding behind the bunk bed -- that must be Mint, you think.

After checking to make sure there are no cameras nearby, you step away from the door and go visible again, making sure to disable your signal cloak as well. You step into the room and close the door behind you quietly. "Mint, is that you behind the bed? It's me, Penny -- are you alright?"

There's no response.

"We talked about how everything feels fuzzy to you, remember? And how everyone doesn't feel human to me?" You find some panties in a drawer and start slipping them on. "Sorry, but I'm uh, I'm naked and I need to get some clothes, okay?"
No. 962996 ID: 891b91
File 158754519446.gif - (222.56KB , 1024x1024 , 1-054-2.gif )

"Oh Penny I'm so glad it's really you!" Mint nearly bawls as she tackles your side, almost knocking you over. "N-now everything's fuzzy and I don't know what it means and I'm so scared and you're the only one I can trust because you're--"
No. 962997 ID: 891b91
File 158754520775.gif - (170.71KB , 1024x1024 , 1-054-3.gif )

She stops and looks up at you with an expression of combined fear and bewilderment. "Y-you're spiky...?"
No. 963000 ID: fb820f

"Umm, at least I'm not fuzzy? And yes, I do have quite a bit of spiky hair in... certain places", while covering your groin. Then ask her if it's a bad thing or does that make her afraid of you. However, I wouldn't tell her anything specific about the current situation or the reason why everything's fuzzy. Just that there seems to be something going on around here right now and that she should stay inside.

Anyway, while talking to Mint, take out all your clothes from the dresser. Make sure you get a good look and feel of every single piece. Then try on every set and also take a good look of yourself in the mirror, both your front and your back. Might be useful for our illusion power.
No. 963001 ID: 9c48ac

Hnnng I want to reassure her but how much can we share...

Screw it I wanna trust her.

"Yeah I uh. Found something out about that. I guess it affected me?"
No. 963002 ID: ea75a5

Holy shit you can feel that?
Yeah, I did a thing and now Cider’s mind controlling most of the shelf to try and find me because she thinks I’m here to kill her. Either that or there really is a killer here and we’re in danger.

On the plus side though I’m fairly sure I know what it is that you’re feeling from me and the people here.
No. 963003 ID: 015bf2

Again, clothes are a bad idea if you need to go invisible again for any reason.

Spiky? Huh. (Blade metaphor may come from someplace real.) Hold that thought, does anything happen to me now?

Try to disguise as background or no rhythm at all.
No. 963004 ID: 10c408

Get your clothes on while you talk quietly.

"Yeah, about that... It's Cider. She's capable of outright mind control and is broadly using her psychic power to keep most of everyone contained while the remainder try and hunt down a serial killer that may or may not be loose on the island.

And no, it's not me. I'm not psychic. All I can do is this."

Enable scanner proofing, then if you've got your clothes on change the color of your clothing to something else.
No. 963005 ID: 0fae41

It seems that Minty is on a different wavelength from everyone else. Perhaps she wields a blade too? And that's odd, I thought spikes were Omen's waveform.
Reassure her you know what she's talking about but no idea what it means. She's not crazy, and you're still you. Something's just different.
No. 963009 ID: 094652

>Everything's fuzzy
>You're spiky
"I'm much more than that. As for the fuzzy, there's a psychic gang war going on outside. Stay indoors and describe what you can.

We're gonna defend ourselves by snorting superpowered textures."
No. 963021 ID: a0dfd2


(Okay, okay, just play dumb here!)

Ask Mint what she means. We KINDA understood the wiggly stuff, but we haven't really seen anything "spiky." If anything, everything else is even wigglier.

But if she CAN feel dust harmonics ...

If Mint really is aware of this, we need her to be able to tell us.

And WE need to tell HER that it's okay, something happened, and Cider and the other jarmu-whatevers are trying to take care of it.
No. 963023 ID: e51896

support. Mint's probably able to feel the wavelength of others, and UNKNWN01 (ours) did look spiky, not as spiky as UNKNWN02, but still spiky. so maybe we should try to disguise our wavelength as nothing.

Tell Mint we might have a better idea what those fuzziness feelings she is feeling means now to reassure her. Also apologize for being spiky. But you'll be here to help her through this.
No. 963024 ID: ce39da

If it's safe to message the room: "Who's the mole?" "Please, this could be important for me to know if we're both to get through this." "Even if I really am with 'Typhon' like you think I am, then there isn't any harm in telling me what I supposedly already know, right?"

I'm starting to suspect that Cider isn't ALPHA; someone (possibly the girl with her) is another blade-user who shoulders the risk of speaking to the room on her behalf.

Meanwhile, if it wasn't Millie who set off the sensor and door alarm, and it wasn't Mint, then who was it. Aside from your amnesia, you have a good memory; think back and try to remember if there was anyone you saw in the bathhouse not among the bathhouse crowd out front the sanctuary. The receptionist? One of the people in the hot tub area?
No. 963028 ID: a9af05

Play dumb. Ask her what she's talking about.
No. 963032 ID: b05d40

I do not think we should keep secrets from Mint regarding what we think these fuzzy and spiky feelings are. She is scared of these feelings and needs answers.
I fear if we dont tell her what we think these feelings are, she might do something irrational and run away from us and our spikiness, and into danger.
No. 963033 ID: 417f73


I like the idea of us being reassuring, seems like
Mint is having a tough time right now
No. 963034 ID: e1d81a

Tell mint that Cider seems to have some weird psychic control over the people. They’re searching for some sort of killer who is likely immune to her powers. And no, it’s not you. Though since you and her both aren’t at the gathering, suspicions will point to you and her both.
No. 963043 ID: b1b4f3

Let the chat room know you're not dead, but you found evidence there was someone else nearby, so the killer might've almost found you. Can the killer teleport or something?

Tell Mint the fuzziness is due to Cider putting everyone into a trance, and you don't want to talk about why you're spiky. Actually, ask if she's ever met Cider. Does she want to? Maybe you could both go meet her now.
No. 963052 ID: 015bf2

Worth stating: there's a non-zero chance Mint could be that mole - if one actually exists. You shouldn't reveal the full extent of your own ability or anything compromising from your chat with Omen. At least not until you know more about Mint and what her nightmares involve.

Millie's reversal already suggested it's possible to bring back memories from those with taffa syndrome (or at least have someone's personality do a sudden 180), so a little care could go a long way here. Besides, to someone without any of the cunning context Omen gave you, the full truth is gonna sound even crazier. Phrase things to avoid confusion and keep it simple to be understood.

Also worth considering is that Mint's sensitivity for Rhythm could be helpful for actively tracking down hints of other blade-users. Assuming you even want to pull her into this mess and that she's willing to help in the short or long term, that is!

Third signal could have just been a hidden blade-user hiding on Red Shelf trying to check on who just ascend-gasmed. Or they could've been Omen being way closer than we thought - they did seem to have a more than fleeting familiarity with Cider, considering the 'a liar sleeps here' comment. (i.e. Omen may know Cider's identity as a blade-wielder).

We also don't know for sure that those signals always equate to someone being a blade-wielder, though they certainly seem to relate to Rhythm.

Anyway, don't spend too much focus on chat. You're in the middle of talking to Mint now, remember! That said... probably doesn't hurt to let them know we're still up and running. You can prooobably afford a couple of questions as long as you take your time between looking at the answers.
No. 963060 ID: fb820f

One important thing we should ask Mint would be if anyone else came in here while you were gone.

I wouldn't use the chat for now. Maybe after we're done with Mint, I'd try sending a private message to abcb03.
No. 963085 ID: fd5772

I don't trust mint because I don't understand why she's immune. Play dumb, and only tell her a little bit about people looking for a killer without talking about the blades.
No. 963179 ID: 60e3cf

Ask mint if she can see distortions in the environment wiggling everywhere.

She seems more focused on how she feels, but can she see what we see?

If not, maybe we should take her to a spot with less distortions, maybe that will help her feel less fuzziness.

She was crying before we entered, so i think her actions are genuine.I do not think she is bad and is indeed trustworthy. I feel we should talk to her about what happened and why we think she feels fuzzy and why we might feel spiky, of only to not have her scared of us.
No. 963199 ID: b34040

Mint's in the same position we were not long ago: Lost, confused, and feeling alone. She felt like she could trust us, and I don't want to pull the rug out from under her. If there's anything we don't want to tell her, let's at least be honest about that.
No. 963233 ID: 529620

Hug mint. They obviously need some emotional comfort, after hiding away like that, and they are so distraught that don't seemed bothered by your at attire. Don't be weird about it and give a damn hug.
No. 963239 ID: e51896

Mint said Penny was spiky and looked to be in fear over that. A hug as Penny is now might just terrify Mint more.
I like the idea of hugging Mint, but we need to see if we can first turn off the spikiness feeling we are emitting, like maybe try disguising our signal to nothing, without rhythm.
No. 963246 ID: a9d8df

Im all for comforting Mint but, we should not reveal our powers or ethereal chat room to her or to anyone else at all. Its probably best to keep stuff like that to ourselves unless in extreme circumstances. Just tell her that Cider is the one causing this.
No. 963266 ID: e51896

I personally think we might need to tell her a little bit about our powers and about blade users powers to give her a peace of mind and understand our spikiness, and understand herself. She was very courageous to trust us about asking about how and why she feels fuzzy sensations, so we should keep that trust and bond between us and Mint strong by being courageous as well and tell her what we think is happening with her as well from what we learned if she presses us on the issue on us being spiky.

Plus, it will be good to have another person who relates to us in many ways as a friend to get through our time in Vesper, and potentially other blade users we might have to deal with. She feels like someone we need to protect.

But overall, we should mainly tell her why we think she feels weird sensations, and try to see if disguising our rhythm to nothing to see if we won't feel spiky to her again can help as I mentioned before: >>963023
No. 963318 ID: 4aa0a7

Its a bad idea to tell anyone about our powers now beside we dont we know Mint well orlong enough to trust her.
No. 963320 ID: f745f8

Does anyone else find it weird that Mint is not effected by Ciders powers?
No. 963323 ID: 10c408

No. There could be any number of explanations for this, given how little we know about the upper limit's on cider's mind control and the smattering of information pertaining to rhythm that Omen imparted to us.
No. 963357 ID: 891b91
File 158771380641.gif - (166.85KB , 1024x1024 , 1-055-1.gif )

"It-- it's okay, I'll explain everything," you reassure Mint, cradling her head while she's latched onto your leg; you try to ignore the combined awkwardness of your nudity and the fact that she's chosen to bury her face into a spot disquietingly close to your crotch. "H-here, is this better? Am I still spiky?" You reactivate your signal cloak, hoping that it'll clear up the "spiky" sensation.
No. 963358 ID: 891b91
File 158771381338.gif - (339.61KB , 1024x1024 , 1-055-2.gif )

Mint slumps onto her knees and gazes up at you expectantly. "Y-yeah... I-I mean no, you aren't... What was that, Penny?"

"I'm uh, sorry about the spikiness," you say as gently as you can as you slip the panties on and grab a bra. "Some... things happened while I was gone. The good news is that I think I know what the fuzzy and spiky feelings are." You look back at her. "Did anyone else come in here while I was gone?"

"Um, a couple people looked in here for a minute earlier," Mint sniffles. "I was hiding, because of the fuzziness."
No. 963359 ID: 891b91
File 158771382386.gif - (313.27KB , 1024x1024 , 1-055-3.gif )

"I think they were looking for someone -- a serial killer. I found out that Cider has... powers, and right now she's using it to make almost everyone on the shelf line up outside so they can find the killer, since I guess the killer is immune to Cider's powers. That's what the fuzziness is -- Cider's powers, or something like that." You pause as you slip a shirt over your head. "And no, it's not me. But they might think it's me or you if they find out we're immune to it."

You catch sight of the mirror nearby, and it jogs your memory that you wanted to check to see if you had a tattoo like Millie's. You flip up your right ear, and... well, there it is. That just adds more questions on top of this increasingly strange situation, but considering the present circumstances you decide to file them away to consider later, when there isn't a serial killer on the loose somewhere on the shelf.
No. 963360 ID: 891b91
File 158771383373.gif - (149.56KB , 1024x1024 , 1-055-4.gif )

"As for the spikiness," you continue, studying your clothes and committing it to memory, "something happened to me while I was out and uh, I guess it 'woke up' powers of my own. Which means I can do... this."

You attempt to will the color of your shirt to be something different, but your shirt just kind of flickers randomly. "Hold on, I'm still kinda figuring this out," you add, slipping your shirt and bra off. You try again, and this time it works -- despite being topless, you appear to be wearing a red shirt. "There. I guess it's not a lot compared to Cider's mass mind control, but it's something." You decide it's best to avoid revealing that you can go invisible as well, though, in addition to staying mum about your blade-stealing power.
No. 963361 ID: 891b91
File 158771384511.gif - (320.20KB , 1024x1024 , 1-055-5.gif )

Mint stares at you for a long moment. "That... explains a lot," she finally responds, seemingly calmer now. She turns away, removing her glasses to wipe the tears from her eyes. "Can I... can I ask you a question?"

"Uh, I guess so, what is it?" You ask, slipping your shirt back on.
No. 963362 ID: 891b91
File 158771385956.gif - (339.74KB , 1024x1024 , 1-055-6.gif )

" H A V E Y O U S E E N T H E L I G H T S B E F O R E D A W N ? "
No. 963364 ID: 0fae41

Sounds like a rhetorical question. Shoo the bird away with a thrown shoe.
No. 963365 ID: b1b4f3

Coool, fake clothes! They don't wiggle though. To be completely convincing you'll need to fix that.

HOLY FUCK back away towards the door. "Lights before dawn" was part of the chant from earlier. This thing is either on Cider's team or the chant has some universal significance.
Ask who it is. What it wants.
No. 963369 ID: 015bf2


This sounds like something a Typhon would say. Be cool as a fucking cucumber. Mint must be the ‘mole’, someone Typhon can possess. Typhon is related to the weird two-eye animal thing, meaning they’ve ‘seen’ you before.

Their special power is probably something akin to possession, which might explain their god complex and ability to create sleeper agents.

“I have not. What are you doing to Mint?”
No. 963372 ID: b1b4f3

I had a thought that Cider might be a decoy and Mint is the real power behind Red Shelf, but the distortion was strong near Cider, not here. Mint would've had to have spotted Penny through invis and ran ahead of her once she saw where she was going.
Instead, it's more likely that Cider isn't the one with mind control, it's Typhon, and either the owl or Mint is Typhon. Cider's power is probably pacification or something, and had to use it to protect herself from Typhon.
Or it's someone other than Typhon? Let's remember, Typhon is like some kind of bogeyman for abcb03, so it could be misplaced blame.

Something of note: Mint isn't wiggling and neither is the owl. Either the owl is a hallucination, or Mint is, because they can't BOTH be using all their rhythm to attack Penny. Plus she was crying from both sides of her face before!

Penny could try to steal a blade from Mint. I'm thinking the way to do that is to shove Rhythm into her.
No. 963375 ID: 10c408

Close your eyes and put your hands out in front of you for a second, then ask Mint if she can repeat yourself.
No. 963377 ID: b34040

I'm not ready to assume Mint's the mole yet. It could still be Millie, or even someone else we haven't met. I'm also not convinced this isn't just happening in Penny's head, or in some other way not-entirely-physical.

Penny, I doubt you're in physical danger. If it charges at you, try to run, but otherwise this might be an opportunity to learn something. Don't assume that you're speaking to Mint right now (you probably aren't).
No. 963387 ID: 015bf2

Well it’s certainly a Rhythm play by someone with powers and since Mint wasn’t out and about investigating the disturbance caused by Penny’s ascension, Omen should already know Penny’s situation, Millie is in the mind-whammied crowd and Cider is busy doing the mind-whammying... that means this is a manifestation of the killer or Typhon, the only people we have reason to suspect might be monitoring the area (or have been monitoring it, since we saw the owl earlier).

Could be a third unknown party, I suppose, but this situation is getting real crowded, if so.
No. 963390 ID: bae7b0


Seconding the possession theory, and now they have revealed themselves to you. Time for some answers!

I'd really like to know if this is what has been causing Mint all the distress, too. Not that there is a lot we can do about that from here, but it would say something about who we are talking to if they're willing to do that to another person.

"You've been following me for a long time now. Can you tell me who I am talking to?"
No. 963393 ID: c84ff4

Interesting eye placement. Are those glasses like legit opaque. Also of note the (probably blade) wiggles are dashed and in out.
Probably also want another update on the blade chat log.
No. 963395 ID: 91ee5f

Bird in the window! There’s a weird bird in the window! It might be the same bird from right here: >>932537 and here: >>933785 !
No. 963397 ID: a0dfd2


Oh hey, a thing in the window with the same eye pattern, that may or may not be our bird buddy!

I'm beginning to wonder if this may not actually be a sort of remote possession ability, with the "tell" being that it causes the recipient / target of the ability to assume the appearance of the user (the foxes, that bird-thing, maybe-it's-that-bird-thing-again).

For now, take the briefest moment you can to assess whether there's a signal coming from them, or if Mint "feels different." (I presume yes, based on visual cues here.)

Let's just roll with this, but first say that "it's rude to eavesdrop on conversations." See which of them reacts to that first.


As for the significance of the tattoo ...

I was thinking that 37 might be our tripcode, but checking back, we're *35, so unless it's in some freaky base, that's a bust, but:

... I wonder if these are designations, something that can be used to look things up, which is both how Millie figured stuff out, and WHY.
No. 963399 ID: 1888a9

Focus and prepare mental defenses of any kind, be ready to resist this possession ability or whatever it is. Not to mention, have an escape planned.

Ask “What did you do to her?”
No. 963400 ID: 8679bc

This is why i said not to tell anyone about are powers...
No. 963402 ID: 2aa5f0

you mean the owl that seems to hate symmetry or are we talking about something else here?
No. 963404 ID: afd902

Huh. In case Mint is the mole or the killer, we should be ready to try and steal whatever blade she might have. We should also be ready to try & do the same it she's be possesed, on the off-chance that we can take the possesor's powers through her.

Right now though, ask questions, try not to get possesed yourself.

Brainwave! The fuzzies on everyone (except you & Mint) was Cider's power protecting them from Typhon. You're protected by your blades, but Mint isn't protected, so she is open to possesion.
No. 963406 ID: ce39da

If that's true, we need to act NOW before Cider loses her concentration!

Kiss the girl, you fool! Attempt spiritual assault on Typhon maybe!
No. 963407 ID: fb820f

The way Mint understood our explanation implies that she, whoever she is right now, is quite intelligent. Let's see if she can wrap her mind around this:

"Umm, is that a pickup line? Dawn? You'd like to... with me... until dawn? Oh my! I mean, I do think you're cute (and unlike Omen you have eyes), so I wouldn't say no, but this is all so sudden! Why is everyone so forward around here? Also, I kinda wanted to do something about Cider right now so, maybe this isn't the best of times..."

If that doesn't work, then I suppose you can go with some standard questions, such as, is she Typhon, who is she, what is she trying to do, who are the Alpha and Omega, what do the numbers 83, 917, 2000 mean, etc.
No. 963408 ID: 015bf2

Occam’s razor, guys: wouldn’t there have been a persistent signal in addition to Cider’s if so? Wouldn’t ALL of Cider’s associates be in a huge tizzy and not just the really invested one? Wouldn’t we have seen a new weird rhythm, like the one Mint is displaying now on them?

It’s possible possession is like a super stealth thing, but the simplest answer is that Cider’s the one doing the mind-control of Vespers, and it’s to hide the hunt for Penny.

Kissing/hugging to achieve ‘spiritual congress’ could still do something - such as allow a clearer, more private line of connection - mind you. We’ve been told conversations you don’t want to broadcast are hard to hold remotely.
No. 963413 ID: a0dfd2


Thank you.

The very idea that Mint had managed to plant herself in the Vespers, completely undetected, and remain there without acting against Cider until Penny realized her powers (and even then sit around and wait completely undetected) -- whilst spying on us via the funky-eye critters since even before we left O-Town -- is just too ridiculous.

And thank you as well for raising the point of other rhythms.

Likewise, as a friend recently pointed out: Mint was crying on both sides of her face before this, so unless she has illusion powers, too, this isn't Mint right now.
No. 963414 ID: e51896

Oh shit, good catch with those tears coming out of both sides of where her eyes were supposed to be!

if that is the case, then those fox looking animals we saw back in that abandoned city were also possessed in some way, meaning this person that is possessing Mint has been following us since around the start of this quest.
No. 963426 ID: 6c227a

Play it completely straight.
"I don't think I've been awake before dawn since I can remember, so... I don't think so?"
No. 963444 ID: e6eb48

Not actually true. Penny was awake and saw dawn come and go while she was walking on the road out of the Old City, before she reached the fork between the automatic evacuation zone and the roadblock that led to the town with the giant monster in it. (>>/questarch/889586)
No. 963445 ID: ce39da

I didn't think Mint was a (knowing) mole to begin with. I think she's just someone uniquely vulnerable to Typhon because Cider couldn't protect her with her blade - after all, possessing someone she's directly mind-controlling would be a REALLY bad idea. My suggestion for spiritual congress was mostly in response to the realization that Cider can only restrict Typhon's ability for so long, and it still stands, unless there's a good way to suddenly attack the bird.
No. 963459 ID: fb820f

Oh and, to answer Mint's question.

"Yes, I have seen them."
> >>/questarch/888233 >Glancing at the lights across the water
> >>/questarch/909256 >A thousand swarming lights are arrayed before you
One of these two should be the one they mean. Probably the latter one.

You could also change your appearance to that of Omen's. Perhaps this person would find it... intriguing.
No. 963461 ID: fd5772

I told you her immunity was suspicious and that we need to get out of here, so let's hightail it and head somewhere else right now. We don't need to be around the psychic side-eyed bird. Don't say nothing, just run.
No. 963480 ID: b9f243

Idea: maybe Cider's people were searching the bath house because Penny was talking out loud instead of using chat speak giving her location away.

If we found that killer through the owl, we might need to alert them again by giving our location again by speaking out loud in chat yo get backup.

Should we say "Titty sprinkles" out loud in chat and hope cider's gaurds senses it and comes help us?
No. 963495 ID: 10c408

No, because that's just going to compound our problems. There's a lot going on, most of which we don't have a full grasp on because of how little we know, and tipping off the search teams that will either detain or shoot us is just going to make the current set of terrible problems even more dire.
No. 963513 ID: 9c48ac

Seems unlikely, given the only location information in our chat log was the Shelf. I think it's far more likely they were searching the whole shelf and had the location narrowed down by that pattern detector.
Even if it does give more precise information, giving away our location is as likely to make the situation worse as better.

Anyway, it's hard to be sure, but I think this most likely isn't Mint anymore. So:
*Be prepared to GTFO, but if you do, try not to blow the fact you can go invisible.
*"Leave her alone, left-eyes!"
*Negotiate, but warily. We don't want to abandon Mint, but there's really not much we can do for her unless lefteyes leaves on their own.
No. 963518 ID: 891b91
File 158780851195.gif - (149.14KB , 1024x1024 , 1-056-1.gif )

You step back in alarm -- your mind floods with possible explanations for what is happening before you. Is Mint possessed? Is she a blade user? Is she the killer?

"I-I don't know?" You respond, addressing both Mint and the owl in the window. "What did you --"
No. 963519 ID: 891b91
File 158780852457.gif - (322.86KB , 1024x1024 , 1-056-2.gif )

The words suddenly refuse to come out, as if caught in your throat. You rapidly become aware of a growing pressure in your windpipe; it swells and swells until it bursts, sending a jolt of sharp pain that is soon replaced by intense burning.

You claw at your throat, coughing uncontrollably as your body tries to expel the sudden fire inside you!
No. 963520 ID: 891b91
File 158780853547.gif - (375.56KB , 1024x1024 , 1-056-3.gif )

You fall to the floor -- you try to regain control of your body, but it puts every ounce of energy you have into expelling some unknown substance from your lungs. Excruciating, searing pain spreads throughout your throat and chest, expanding and spreading until it envelops every fiber of your being.

"I-- I didn't--" Mint sobs, backing away from you and collapsing in the corner as she watches you in horror, "I didn't know, I didn't know it would, I'm sorry, I'm so sorry..."
No. 963521 ID: 891b91
File 158780854681.gif - (403.85KB , 1024x1024 , 1-056-4.gif )

As you lie there, paralyzed by agony, your chest still heaving violently, you wonder if this is the end.
No. 963522 ID: 891b91
File 158780855688.png - (65.80KB , 1024x1024 , 1-056-5.png )



Discussion: >>/questdis/123379
No. 963525 ID: 2aa5f0

No. 963545 ID: 015bf2

That's disconcerting.
No. 963552 ID: 710d90

I knew we couldn't trust Mint! Now look what happened. I cant tell if we're coughing up blood or dust. If we survive this we need to be more careful about who we trust.
No. 963561 ID: fd5772

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