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966089 No. 966089 ID: 6f7a5a

This is a NSFW clothing damage adventure!
the quest will contain nudity and violence and possibly some sexual content
Lewd suggestions are encouraged but not required.

A catles is built to protect, from both raider and traitor

This quest is funded by Patreon,
if you'd like to see more consider sending a few coins!

Previous Threads

Expand all images
No. 966090 ID: 6f7a5a
File 158908570409.png - (717.22KB , 657x858 , Pentacle129.png )

Eeyvel stomps across the outer courtyard of Castle Crym
'Do this Eeyfel, do that! ' the acolyte grumbles 'collect the taxes Eeyfel, sort the potions Eeyfel, sweep the ritual chamber Eeyfel, don't fall behind on your studies Eeyfel!'
The Kobold spits in disgust 'Fifth Acolyte, Bleh! More like first slave!'

Eeyfel shakes her head as she continues stomping her way to the fountain 'Why should I warn of escaped prisoners? Eeyfel has her own problems . . .'
No. 966091 ID: b1b4f3

Like what?
No. 966093 ID: cdabe3

we are intrigued

also look out for an angry hydra
No. 966094 ID: 0fae41

Those prisoners encroach on your authority. You won't have a castle to live in if they send it careening down the cliff with their bombs!
No. 966097 ID: 0eb693

Own problems? Explain as you make your way to inform whoever of the prisoners, cause if you don't the Hydra will become one of your own problems.
No. 966098 ID: 99d5e0

Ok, tell us what other things you have to do, besides what you are told.
No. 966104 ID: 89ae2b

The reason you must warn about escaped prisoners is to make those escaped prisoners other people's problem.
No. 966106 ID: 9876c4

I think this reasoning is the most Koboldinous.
No. 966172 ID: 5b0071

Those problems will only multiply if, in abandoning your duty, you are assumed to be helping the prisoners.

If she treats you this poorly as a student, how would she treat you as a criminal?
No. 966183 ID: ed763f

That's crappy bosses in a nutshell, you can expect no reward but if you mess up? Kiss your tail goodbye.
No. 967402 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159009704188.png - (492.66KB , 657x858 , Pentacle130.png )

Eeyfel's words are barely more than a whisper '... deathly problems' the acolyte winces as she lifts her pained arm, still suffering from the merest touch of the plagued unliving creature.

she shudders with the memory, and dreads the future it foretells.
No. 967405 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159009722662.png - (489.12KB , 657x858 , Pentacle131.png )

As dangerous as her emerging affliction might be, the kobold knows that failing her mistress would only yield a worse fate.
the Acolyte glances around the courtyard wary of prying eyes, she actives a hidden rune.
A secret passage opens at the foot of the memorial shrine leading into the darkness.
No. 967407 ID: 0fae41

You'd better get that treated as soon as your errand is complete. It's going to be even more of a hassle serving the duchess's needs with one arm.
No. 967458 ID: 322af8

I suppose we'll just have to see where shes going.
No. 967468 ID: 094652

Let me guess, the Duchess treats your arm as an 'ongoing experiment'.
No. 967480 ID: 10c07d

Near the end of chapter one she was grabbed by an undead and it messed up her arm
No. 967552 ID: e96198

Yeah, just get this done and think about who might be able to help you.
No. 969138 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159156366995.png - (490.23KB , 657x858 , Pentacle132.png )

Eyfel descends the stairs grumbling, frustrated over steps made for creatures with legs too long or numerous.
No. 969139 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159156378574.png - (570.34KB , 657x858 , Pentacle133.png )

Reaching the bottom of the stairs and looking into the gate of the ritual chamber the Acolyte is faced with a tough choice:

A) She enters the chamber and alerts her masters to the current crisis, but risk interrupting a crucial ritual.
B) she waits till they finish, which could take hours and loose precious time resolving the crisis

Eeyfel knows with out a doubt that if she makes the wrong choice she'll be blamed and punished harshly.
No. 969140 ID: 3d369d

Sneak into the chamber, without alerting them, and try to work out if it's something you can interrupt.
No. 969141 ID: 0fae41

Alert them now. Don't give the prisoners time to plot and scheme - Kalez's plotting and scheming must take the position of all pieces into account.
No. 969143 ID: 322af8

A. You'll be in trouble either way but you might as well get in trouble for doing your job.
No. 969144 ID: 9876c4

Right approach
No. 969152 ID: 77e804

Sounds good. Be really careful not to get discovered unnecessarily.
No. 969158 ID: 10c07d

No. 969278 ID: 5b0071

The prison break is time sensitive. They must know.
No. 969283 ID: 35458d

Enter, but have tact. Make sure you show in demeanor that you have dire, time sensitive information. Show proper respects. And do NOT cut off anyone that will be too angry at you.
No. 969405 ID: e96198

A little peek to make sure you're not interrupting wouldn't hurt right? Enter, check, leave if important.
No. 969455 ID: a664e3


Agreed. If you're caught, then stick with A and just tell them what they need to know. If you aren't, then base your choice on what you see.
No. 969456 ID: 094652

Knock on the door until you are ordered to stop. Then explain the situation as quickly as possible.
No. 970672 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159312514413.png - (524.30KB , 657x858 , Pentacle134.png )

Eeyfel tries to quietly open the door, but the activation charm grinds the doors fully open.

three imposing figures turn their attention to the interruption.
No. 970673 ID: 0fae41

State your business. 'The prisoners are escaping, my liege!' Then duck for cover.
No. 970674 ID: 094652

"They blew up the dungeon! How shall we crush them, Commander?"

And yes, duck so hard your tongue licks your brain.
No. 970681 ID: 10c07d

Inform them that the prisoners have escaped and of the explosions.
Also stand your ground firmly so you don’t look like a coward infront of your leaders.
No. 970683 ID: e96198

Ok, never underestimate our masters. They thought of everything, probably.

Apologize and get the news out quick. Tell them what you know. I assume Eeyfel knows that it was the 'heroes' she encountered days prior that have escaped. Explosives were used but they teleported out. Fate of the Warden unknown, caught in the blast.

Yeah, do this but don't be bold. Brace for whatever punishment is coming.
No. 971001 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159348906416.png - (434.35KB , 657x858 , Pentacle135.png )

'You dare disturb my rituals?' High Priestess Kalez hisses, more annoyed by the disrespect than anything else.
'Many apologies Mistress!'the kobold servant pleads 'but the prisoners are escaping mistress!'
Shock and furry fill the rachnid having no better target she vents it upon her minion 'WHAT!? who dares! tell me everything or I'll toss you into a brazier!'

Eeyfel as quickly and clearly as she can manage explains what happened, starting with the guards waking up,moving on to the Hydra running beyond the kobold guards, then encountering the strange wizard that blew up the Hydra and finally finishing with handing over of the strange basket found in the guard mess.

Furious beyond words Kalez can only chatter her chelicerae in a series of seething clicks, she shoves the basket into the hands of her first Acolyte, a vavver named N'Thar.

N'Thar Examines the basket with fascination 'This marking on the top it looks similar to the symbol on Miss Hearth's Flag'
'you think she's involved? ' Oragat the armorer blurts out.
'She might be . . .'N'thar ponders for a moment before addressing Kalez 'If I may Mistress I have some thoughts for a plan of action'

Kalez . . .
A) Punishes Eeyfel for her many failings
B) indulges her adviser and listen's to his plan
C) comes up with her own superior plan
d) something else

No. 971002 ID: 0fae41

C/b: Listen to his plan, then rebuff him with the same plan but better.
No. 971004 ID: 36784c

B) indulges her adviser and listen's to his plan
No. 971005 ID: 9876c4

I think so too.
No. 971006 ID: c44df0

I like this one.
No. 971016 ID: e2dc7c

Punish Eeyful while listening to your adviser's plan
No. 971050 ID: d186fc

A. Toss her into a brazier. Then B.
No. 971056 ID: f20f85

No. 971060 ID: dbd72b

Ya, this. We a petty bitch. Don't punish Eeyfel, this is an emergency, and she made a good call to save you time, and it's hard to find servants who aren't completely useless.
No. 971070 ID: 9876c4

Realistically, punishing Eeyfel could be an important part of the new plan.
No. 971088 ID: 10c07d

A and B, but don’t punish her too much Eeyfels trying her best
No. 971096 ID: 094652

Punishing her for getting the message to you instead of running away or waiting when swift action must be taken will just condition incompetence.

C/D Yell at the advisor to write his plan up on a chalkboard while you come up with a strategy. You'll listen if he can write up with something faster than you.
No. 971112 ID: 322af8

B) Time is right now fleeting, we need to make sure we act fast.
No. 971132 ID: 2e6ecc

D) Have N'thar collab a plan with Eeyfel, though with him mostly planning it out with her making slight edits. Make final touches after.

Also see if we can send a search party/rescue team for the Hydra. Not that we care or anything, just the resources and time put into them would be a serious waste if they truly were killed by a few explosives placed by treacherous, arrogant 'heroes'.
No. 971527 ID: a664e3


B. If we're going to have an advisor, it seems a waste to not at least hear them out.

As for Eeyfel, there are many failings we could punish her for besides interrupting us. However, since she did the right thing by bringing us the information as promptly as she could, perhaps a lighter sentence is in order. Still punish her, as we don't want her to get too comfortable, but nothing overly harsh for this loyal minion.
No. 971596 ID: cdabe3

do this
No. 971648 ID: 4286b4

Tell Eeyfel that she did well, and her reward is... a new set of clothes! She may take what she likes from the castle wardrobe. Of course, this means her current outfit has to go. Go with A and tear apart the clothes under her cloak.
No. 971652 ID: 10c07d

This sounds like a fitting punishment
No. 972227 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159475255073.png - (598.01KB , 657x858 , Pentacle136.png )

'just a moment' Kalez responds to N'Thar, before lifting Eeyfel up a carrying her to the nearest brazier.

'Eeeeiaa! Please Misteress! I told you everything just like you asked!!' the kobold screeches as the fire scorches her outfit.

Kalez hisses in response 'Everything? wrong! you falied to explain where you were durring all this, how you failed to prevent any of the disaster or why I should keep such a worthless servant!'

Eeyfel continues to beg and plead for mercy
No. 972231 ID: 10c07d

Might as well take her undergarments while we’re still punishing her. Leave her to return to the castle in nothing but her cape.
No. 972300 ID: ae9bd9

Burn her enough to leave permanent lasting scars without hindering her physical performance.
No. 972302 ID: 66c622

Okay, that's going too far. Just the underwear being gone is fine, we're evil not monsters...Okay, we're monsters but not "monster" monsters.
No. 972304 ID: b1b4f3

You know, those are good questions. Maybe Eeyfel should answer them, unless she wants to become an eyefull.
No. 972308 ID: 7dd242

Tell your mistress you were attending your duties elsewhere. Collecting taxes, sorting potions, sweeping, studying, yes? Just as she requires of you!
No. 972320 ID: 0fae41

Don't ask for mercy Eeyfel, give answers. Or excuses. It's expected from someone in your position.
Kalez, put her down and send her to deliver your orders. With kobold minions, You get what you pay for, and/or beat into them day in and day out.
No. 972332 ID: e78a3b

Snap (Water Slash or Molten Bolt) the links on those panties and expose her vulva to the heat. But ultimately give up and tell her not to fail you again. Then turn to N'Thar and his plan ideas.
No. 972425 ID: 322af8

We've made our point. Toss eeyfel to the ground and go to hear the plan which will stop the real danger from getting away and destroying the castle.
No. 972428 ID: 9876c4

I agree. A little terror goes a long way.

But those who trespassed against us must face our true wrath.
No. 972444 ID: 7bdfa6

Tell her that begging for mercy is not the answer to your questions and she needs to stop avoiding the question. You do not tolerate weaklings who begs for mercy within her position.

You're harsh, but fair. Tell her You'll give her one more chance with this choice, but because of not answering questions the first time around, it comes with a punishment: either keep avoiding the question and die a fiery death, or she can answer your questions properly and grant her mercy, but at the price of incinerating all the clothing she owns and not allowing her wear any form of clothing for an entire month, even while on thr job, as punishment for the failings and for now avoiding our questions and begging for mercy. She'll need to learn the hard way to tough out this trial if she wishes to serve you again.
No. 972456 ID: 946f7d

The humiliation of having a minion be so incompetent- in front of others no less! is inexcusable.
If you show mercy in return she will never learn.
No. 972532 ID: 554530

Take her undergarments and let her shame be seen by all.
Perhaps the rest could use likewise a reward for their services?
Either way council with the advisor with the plans for this unforseen hitch.
No. 972585 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159502961182.png - (393.99KB , 657x858 , Pentacle137.png )

Eeyfel squeals a little more before Kalez tires of the torment, and throws the kobold to the ground by her chains, snapping the undergarment off of her.
No. 972586 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159502971076.png - (560.32KB , 657x858 , Pentacle138.png )

Kalez Turns to her adviser 'Speak your plan'

N'thar bows to Kalez and begins 'Thank you, the way I see it we have a number of pressing concerns that have require multiple solutions, We'll never find that cloaked magician now, but with any luck Garrin will succeed in slowing their ally's progress in the north. I advise that we Send Eeyfel or some other unremarkable individual into town to discover the source of this basket, the Hatchley and Hearth guild hall being the best place to start. Regarding or wayward warden I shall collect the Hydra personally I've cultivated a loyalty with the beast I can bring it back from the second level.'

The Armorer steps forward 'I'll not be sidelined again!'

The advisor smirks in response and continues 'Never fear Oragatt, I've not forgotten you, Someone should collect that giant we used, she's desperate for help that we can provide, and your homelands dealing with giants shall prove invaluable.'

The Armorer seems to accept this

Kalez considers the whole plan, she can't take credit for it, there are to many witnesses for it to be amusing

A)She accepts N'Thar's plan
B)She makes changes
C)She attends one of the objective's personally
D)she comes up with something completely different
E)some other reaction

No. 972598 ID: b1b4f3

B/C, go with Eeyfel to investigate the guild. If they are involved they will expect us to investigate in some way since the Hydra is a witness, and they will likely recognize whoever we send simply from being on high alert. It's possible we can distract them by being super high profile and making a big fuss, while Eeyfel sneaks in and does the actual work. A two-pronged attack.
No. 972601 ID: 7dd242

B: High risk high reward strategy: N'thar's "we'll never get that cloaked magician now" is an admission of weakness. He might not be able to get them, but of course not! You are the mistress of magic around here, and you will not have lesser sorcerers trampling in your territory without your leave! Announce that you will track this interloper, where everyone else would obviously fail.

Success will surely show your power and dominance, and even if you somehow don't get your hands on this magician themselves, so long as you bring back something, you'll have gained some benefit that N'thar would have not even attempted to achieve.
No. 972602 ID: e96198

B/C) This situation has escalated to requiring your own hands and claws in this. Lets relieve N'thar of retrieving the warden so he can assist with one of the other tasks. We'll go after the Hydra ourselves, to make sure they don't complicate anything and to also gain favor with them. They are after all, one of our best non-acolytes. If the other two objectives fail, we'll have a powerful guardian on our side with our other minions. Assuming we can ensure loyalty, and their safety.
No. 972606 ID: ae9bd9

This is kind of bullheaded. While we may not be able to find them now, we could certainly find them eventually. We should start an investigation into the individual and try to track them down. Chasing after them now is a waste of time. Its not weakness, its being smart.
No. 972610 ID: 10c07d

No. 972611 ID: 10c07d

N’thar’s plan is well thought out and smart. I think it’s the best and safest course of action for us seeing how a good amount of things haven’t been going the way Kalez wants them too.
No. 972614 ID: 85860a

I agree completely. Accept this suspiciously quickly well thought out plan with your addition as an example to Eeyfel of what a loyalist to her mistress looks like.
No. 972618 ID: 0fae41

C: Remand the Hydra yourself.
No. 972629 ID: 9876c4

Parts of N'thar's plan are likely to go awry. This is a powerful adversary.

But if we graciously accept it, he will look foolish, and become a better subordinate in the future as he begs for our forgiveness.
No. 972630 ID: 864e49

this but
We go get the Hydra while N'thar goes with Eeyfel to investigate.

Also we need to do something about Eeyfels arm.
No. 972650 ID: 322af8

A)seems reasonable enough of a plan, and no true leader does the dirty work themselves.
No. 972733 ID: 10c07d

I’m not sure Kalez herself going to the Hydra is such a good idea. As N’thar says he knows her better and is probably our best bet for calming her.
No. 972924 ID: 4286b4

Hatchley and Hearth guild hall? I thought they were not from these lands, as mentioned by Vivian, she was just a foreign exterminator.

Oragatt... wouldn't it be too slow for them to collect the giant? Like, if they do that, would they still be able to meet Vivian or Sabria? I'm not sure what other job they could do tho.

Make changes: Send Nifel instead of Eeyfel. Eeyfel would be too conspicuous. It would also be too conspicuous if Kalez would assist there.

I think Kalez should go check out the prison, how was it that the invaders were able to get in there. This basket, could it be some sort of a teleportation marker? Is there any spell that could help us with this?

Kalez should also contact the trolls to help Garrin.
No. 974091 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159683453149.png - (516.38KB , 657x858 , Pentacle139.png )

Kalez pauses for a moment and "A guild house? I thought that Hearth woman said she had newly arrived?"

'indeed she did' N'Thar responds with a smug expression 'but even then I suspected most of her words were half truths our outright lies, I investigated the matter and found that a guild house bearing her name was set up three years prior, and she's been operating in this kingdom for some time. '

The golden scorpion finds his self satisfaction revolting, and responds with sarcasm 'you're very clever first acolyte'

N'Thar pretends the compliment is genuine 'Thank you High Priestess'

Kalez ignores this and continues '. . .Yes too clever I think to be wasting talent tracking down our multi-headed warden, I'll find the beast myself, your sparkling wisdom will go with Eeyfel and and show her what it means to be a competent servant.'

'Of course high priestess' N'Thar responds with a sneer.
Neither Acolyte seems pleased with this change but both hold their tongues on any further comment.

Are there any further changes Kalez will make to the plan?
No. 974092 ID: 322af8

Sounds like a good plan set in motion. We should hurry and start putting it into action before any more prisoners get away.
No. 974110 ID: e96198

Best be off then, get the warden and restore order to the prison. Save Kalez's definitely-not-daughters, adopted or not best non-alcolyte(s). Maybe we should ask for N'thar's advice on handling them but I think we'd be wasting time.
No. 974124 ID: e51896

Plan is good.
Now to think of a fitting punishment for Eeyfel.
No. 974125 ID: 0fae41

Nope, that's plenty of ideas to call it your own. Poor N'thar, was probably planning to do some black market shopping on the side.
No. 974681 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159777874587.png - (535.02KB , 657x858 , Pentacle140.png )

Satisfied Kalez dispatched her Acolytes, "Good! now get going every second will cost us"

All Acolytes will begin carry out their missions unguided, select a character too follow to guide them carefully and unlock story moments, unselected characters missions will be jumped to when something goes horribly wrong, or if a task is going to take a long time.

A) Follow High Priestess Zarcadia Kalez as she stays in the castle and goes about collecting of the lost Hydra.
B) Follow first Acolyte Aebin Nurom Thar and Fifth Acolyte Eeyfel Scrunge, as they head into town to find clues about the infiltrators.
C) Follow Second Acolyte Garrin Veraki as he escorts Princess Reefa and prevents monster hunter Vivian Hearth from crossing Belgate Bridge.
D) Follow Third Acolyte Oragatt Ruingarth as she goes to reinforce Herocea and attempts to further detain Inquisitor Sabria.

E)if you select any other character, I will pick the acolyte most likely to interact them on their mission

No. 974682 ID: f56a2b

No. 974683 ID: 19da02

No. 974684 ID: 3570bd

In order of my preference: C B A D
No. 974685 ID: 711e57

No. 974687 ID: 322af8

C. Sounds like we'll have the most fun there.
No. 974688 ID: 00f061

Order of my preference: B C A D
No. 974689 ID: e2dc7c

No. 974690 ID: e85a08

No. 974691 ID: 8da404

A, we must find our baby.
No. 974692 ID: 8da404

Oh, and tell Eeyfel to dress herself. She won't work "properly" like that.
No. 974693 ID: 4854ef

No. 974694 ID: b1b4f3

No. 974700 ID: 0fae41

Ooh, tough choice! D.
No. 974701 ID: df76b1

Both B and C sound fun!
No. 974702 ID: a664e3


C's my pick, I wanna check back in with Garrin and the gang.
No. 974711 ID: d2da5a

No. 974779 ID: 5412a8

D. Always choose the D.
No. 974781 ID: a9af05

No. 974794 ID: 5b0071

No. 975359 ID: 3d15f2

tough choice, but C
No. 975587 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159918486381.png - (537.99KB , 657x858 , Pentacle141.png )

As Kalez leaves she hears N'Thar providing Eeyfel with a long list of requirements and orders she must obey on their mission.

His displeasure pleases the golden scorpion, she doesn't know why he wanted to enter the ward of the second level, but no doubt it involved circumventing her authority and gaining further favor with the creatures that dwell there.

The creatures are not fully under Kalez's power, and might turn against her if she's not careful. Kalez resolves to bring a couple of the serpent mercenaries with her, they are relatively loyal and slow with stairs, making them useful decoys if retreat is needed.

Kalez considers if she should bring any additional protection
No. 975589 ID: 322af8

The serpents should be enough. Too many minions and the movements will be too slow and crowded.
No. 975591 ID: 10c07d

The two serpents should work.
Do we even have a plan for calming down the Hydra?
No. 975593 ID: df76b1

Hydras are heavy, and your snakes are no good with stairs...

This is an arcane chamber- could you summon something with more power than that?
No. 975626 ID: 4286b4

Nah, it's fine.
No. 975677 ID: e96198

Bring the serpents. Though keep them on standby, hidden away when encountering the Hydra.
No. 975709 ID: 6f7a5a
File 159929324358.png - (232.94KB , 657x858 , Pentacle142.png )

Kalez decides to not bring anything else for protection

Kalez pulls out a map of the second level, and quickly marks with an "X" where she imagines the Hydra will likely have fallen. She
has no currently plan to detain the Hydra but is certain something will come to her by the time she gets there. She considers summoning a powerful elemental spirit to subdue the beast but thinks better of it, the risk of then having two deadly monsters on the loose is too great.

The Golden Scorpion refocuses herself she needs to choose a route to level two, she disregards the path up from level three, too many wards she'd have to shut down to allow the serpents to pass.
She decides either down the stairs from level one, or up by the supply elevator from the docks.

What does she decide?
No. 975710 ID: cdabe3

No. 975718 ID: 10c07d

No. 975719 ID: 0fae41

Not bringing anything else still means the snakes, right? It takes more than one head to deal with a many-headed monster. Might want to have guardian weapon at the ready, and be prepared to knock her off balance before casting grapple spells.
Take the stairs, it'll be faster
No. 975732 ID: 322af8

Elevator sounds like a good idea. Will help the snakes with movement at the very least.
No. 975740 ID: a664e3


B: Elevator
No. 975741 ID: e96198

Take the elevator, you may be boxed in but speed is probably going to help us with the situation right now.
No. 977053 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160091578313.png - (584.11KB , 657x858 , Pentacle143.png )

Kalez decides on the Elevator, it'll be quicker and arouse fewer suspicions.

After contacting her two favored mercenaries with her crystal she walks down to elevator room entrance, and waits for her soldiers to come in from the city

* * *

The Golden scorpion is not kept waiting long.
Azzeki and Sezeda arrive, but another serpent Lylene has followed them
No. 977054 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160091592171.png - (611.62KB , 657x858 , Pentacle144.png )

Kalez feigns anger'I told you two to come alone'

'It's not our fault!' Azzeki pleads 'she followed us here!'

Madam Lylene tries to muster all the nobility and dignity her disgraced bloodline can muster 'Asss lasst knight of Crym it is my duty to render aid where needed'

Kalez holds back a chuckle, and attempt to remain serious 'oh how did you even know I had a task to be done?'

Lylene gleefully chimes 'I didn't! I've been following Sezeda everywhere! I know she's one of you favoritess for dangerouss tassks!'

Pleeaassse make her sstop. Sezeda groans.

Kalez Likes Lylene, She's spent the last several months secretly helping the hopeless girl achieve far beyond her normal capabilities.
It has been a fun hobby rigging her to win contests and competitions all the while having her earn the resentment of her peers.

However Lylene will probably get eaten alive on this mission.

Does Kalez care? will she find some way to get rid of her?
No. 977055 ID: b1b4f3

I mean, you like her, shouldn't you care?
Trying to get rid of her might not work though. She might just follow you anyway.
How about you warn her you've been tracking her career and this is the most dangerous thing she's ever attempted. You don't think it will go well for her. If she insists on coming, then tell her you will try to keep her alive (and you mean it, but that doesn't mean you'll keep her unharmed).
No. 977056 ID: df76b1

Once again, we will need all the muscle available to move the hydra. She should stay.

Live or die, can't let our hobbies interfere with important work like this.
No. 977058 ID: e2dc7c

Take Azzeki and Sezeda with you, give her the super important task of guarding the base.

Ask Azzeki how she's doing once out of earshot.
No. 977059 ID: 0fae41

She cares, a cocky hand can spill your deck to your opponents. Not a useful decoy, so unless her unnatural abilities include swiftness of scale she's off. Dress her down and task her with finding the midriff of that getup.
No. 977068 ID: 77abda

I agree. It could be good for her to earn a few scars in a real battle scenario. If she wishes to be useful, she must experience real danger. Kalez will be right behind her to safe her life, but she will not hold her hand.
No. 977098 ID: 10c07d

Keep her along. If anything she can be used as bait or a distraction during the confrontation with the Hydra.
No. 977099 ID: 4286b4

Tell Lylene that if she comes along, she'll be covering her own butt.
No. 977156 ID: 322af8

Might as well bring them along. More cannon fodder in case something goes wrong.
No. 977161 ID: 3aa06e

Yes she cares a bit, let Lylene know that there are unknown risks, things contests have not prepared her for. You have a somewhat personal stake in this, you cannot afford dead weight or a loose cannon contributing to the unknown factors at hand. If she insists on coming, so be it.

>>977068 Agree, don't hold her hand.
No. 977215 ID: 629f2e


Bringing an unprepared minion on a mission where they will almost certainly die serves no purpose other than inflicting mental stress on all other minions present when they inevitably bite it. While it might be nice to use her as a meat-shield, it's better to get rid of her now. The last thing you need is dead weight.

Plus, she's good entertainment.

A small show of cruelty now to keep her from following may wind up being a greater mercy overall. You can warn her of the dangers to try and get her to leave on her own, but it may just be quicker to assert your authority and/or strength to force compliance.
No. 979034 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160317286379.png - (540.34KB , 657x858 , Pentacle145.png )

Kalez decides she could use a little more expendable flesh,
she cares for Lylene but this mission is important enough to risk a favored pet.

The sigh Kalez give is genuine 'very well Madame Lylene Eshekath, you can follow.'

the young naga is clearly pleased but makes a modest effort to hide it.

* * *

Kalez leads leads them inside to the elevator room.

Ulric Ikenhart, the new castle grounds-keeper and gardener is here.
Ulric is preparing the supply shipment to the second level, blissfully unaware that this task has cost the lives of so many before him.
'Ulric!' Kalez calls out.

he turns and bows to the Duchess as she approaches 'forgiveness your graces, I wasn't expecting you, Nethar didn't tell me . . . actually he was suppose to be here already.'
No. 979035 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160317302696.png - (520.82KB , 657x858 , Pentacle146.png )

'Nethar will not coming' Kalez respond

a smile spreads across Ulric's face 'he's not dead is he? he owes me coin.'

Ulric is quite young but up close Kalez can see the illness that six month of this task will inflict.
'I had work for him in town, I'll be going up this time.'

This seems to delight Ulric further 'The old lady will be so happy to see you, I've been told how much she misses your visits'

Kalez shudders at the thoughts of visiting that horrid witch, with any luck she hopes she won't have too.'I'm sure she does . . . take us up now Ulric'

The wolf seems a little surprised 'Are you all going up? I'll have to send you up in two trips, along with all the supplies'
No. 979036 ID: 0fae41

Very well, Lylene and you will take the lift up and wait upstairs for the rest of the train to follow you.
No. 979037 ID: b1b4f3

>along with all the supplies
What if he didn't send the supplies? Could he send the four of you up in one trip on your own?
No. 979045 ID: 4d6de9

His primary job involves the supplies. There's probably personnel awaiting them too. Causing a delay would reduce productivity, and reducing productivity would reduce the taxes we perceive.
No. 979056 ID: 10c07d

This, Kalez can get a small conversation in with her about what she’s about to fight.
No. 979080 ID: 5b0071

Clearly whatever is making him waste away has already affected his common sense. Delivering you and your retinue is much more important than briefly delaying a few crates.
No. 979105 ID: 322af8

If it must be two trips send up the two more expendable snake kind first and then go up with your favorite.
No. 979362 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160349160968.png - (532.77KB , 657x858 , Pentacle147.png )

'I'd send you all up at once but three nagas weigh a LOT' Ulric adds as Kalez clicks in irritation.

'Lylene, you're heaviest, with me.Kalez orders and boards the elevator

Lylene follows after her'Sssssoo! who's this old Lady the gardener mentioned?'

'Via Vardek' the scorpion retorts.

Lylene seems unsatisfiedIs that someone I should know?

Kalez can't help but find the serpents imbecilic naivety endearing 'Hah! not any more, just a relic of the past'

Kale considers this conversation
(A) She tells her about Via Vardek
(B) She warns her about the other dangers of level 2
(C) She asks her a question
(D) She tells Lylene to be quiet

No. 979366 ID: b1b4f3

No. 979367 ID: 10c07d

No. 979369 ID: 5455c8

A. An enquiring snake's got a right to know.
No. 979372 ID: e2dc7c

Definitely B. Try to discourage her from going, give her an easy out or hint at a different task she could be doing instead to save face. You might not like it, but it would be the easiest and mostly painless way to get her useless tail out of your way.
No. 979375 ID: 0fae41

No. 979388 ID: 629f2e


B. Give her all the information she needs, and see how she performs with it. Failure is on her shoulders if she falls to a known threat.
No. 979399 ID: 322af8

B) Now is the time to warn her. While the others can not see as well.
No. 979402 ID: 5b0071

B) she doesn't need to know who's who, merely those she may need to fight.
No. 979403 ID: d909cb

A. Maybe B as well, altho I don't think it's possible for Kalez to discourage Lylene.
No. 979984 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160399907939.png - (332.40KB , 657x858 , Pentacle148.png )

Lylene misses the meaning entirely 'A relic? iss sssub dungeon two a sshrine?'

Kalez' thoughts drift to the past 'perhaps a shrine to hubris, in my arrogance I thought I could cure them'

'cure who?' the naga asks

'The prismaticans, the nobility of Teroth. the few that survived Nerexi's invasion only to be devastated by a horrible plague'Kalez adds in the vain hope that the dimwit understands this was intended to be a hospital for them . . .but it ended up as a their tomb
Lylene's peanut brain lights up at the word "tomb"'ssso they all died?' she remarks.

Kalez can only shake her head'you simple fool, you know nothing of death, they suffered for month after month wasting away or developing horrid growths,it was a hall filled with screams and torment, it took five long years for King Flagrion to finally let it all end, to give up on the afflicted and seal away three hundred souls away here forever, only then did they start to die . . . '

Kalez pauses for a moment but no stupid comment from the snake comes so she continues 'I am damned to the burning hells for I could not do it, I held for a half year as they starved, with the strong feeding on the weak, and then I betrayed our King's order and brought them food and water. I could not let them all die.'

Kalez turns to her right and is delighted to see the serpent is still awake and engaged 'they're still there Lylene, still clinging to life after thirty years in the dark.

Lylene seems defiant and unimpressed.I'm not afraid of ssome old sstarving ssick people
No. 979987 ID: b1b4f3

The strong fed on the weak. That means the ones left are strong. Also you've been feeding them so they're not starving.
No. 979988 ID: 094652

"You should. Every beast under the sunlight seeks life; if it does not fight tooth and claw against its own just to survive, it will throw itself into fire just to save its successors. They are all enslaved to the perpetration of their lineage.

These beasts do not live under the sunlight. They will throw themselves in packs just to bury us under their corpses. They will cripple themselves just to scratch us with plague-infested nails. They will destroy their own souls to ruin ours with their visage.

I lost my faith in religion when it ordered me, indirectly, to create this Hell."
No. 979998 ID: 776e30

Never underestimate the will to live, to survive, especially from those whose life is pending from a thin thread, those who have nothing to lose. No one is exempt of this, its on our nature, and in the moments of great crisis, the will to live makes us fight on, beyond our limits, our morals and our loyialties. Only the ones that are truly strong can maintain their psyche intact against despair. That is how TRUE heroes and legends are born, unlike that horrid vixen.
Perhaps yours will be tested today and it will show your true resolve.
No. 980708 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160497621386.png - (424.60KB , 657x858 , Pentacle149.png )

'Never underestimate a starving animal Madame Eshekath, desperation and a deep rooted drive to survive can make even the meek formidable enemies'
Kalez lectures to the fool'the nobles trapped here however are not meek, once they were this kingdom's greatest warriors'

Lylene remains adamant'I'm am thisss kingdom's greatesst warrior, I am last knight of Crym!'

'And you never stopped and thought about what happened to all the other knights?' Kalez questions

Before Lylene can answer the Elevator reaches it's destination.
No. 980709 ID: b1b4f3

Alright get out and prepare for battle.
No. 980754 ID: 322af8

Get out of the elevator and wait for Ulric to come back with the last two. You want to be fully prepared for when this starts.
No. 980835 ID: 298f1c

I agree, let us wait for the rest.
No. 980938 ID: 3aa06e

We brought back up for a reason. Be alert and wait for the others.
No. 981904 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160618641447.png - (743.38KB , 657x858 , Pentacle150.png )

Kalez and Lylen disembark from the elevator.
moments after the elevator trundle back down a figure emerges from the shadows.
No. 981908 ID: c30bc8

Ehhh, someone you know Kalez?
No. 981912 ID: 10c07d

Cast swipe to take away this mystery serpent’s weapon before he can do anything.
No. 981915 ID: b1b4f3

Yeah I have no idea how to react without knowing if this person is supposed to be here.
Looks like a guard though? So... say hello?
No. 981923 ID: 052425

Lylene seems at least a little flustered. Let her talk, see if she trips over her tongue.
No. 981925 ID: 79160f

Be ready for an attack if this isn’t someone we know. Let Lylene show her cowardice or courage, put her on the spot.
No. 982407 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160667952784.png - (331.11KB , 657x858 , Pentacle151.png )

Lylene seems ready to fight! . . . and be destroyed, she's no match the the knight Commander Kalez knows

She speaks out to avoid a pointless fight. "Knight Commander Eghosco! Hold!"

the armored figure halts for a moment

Kalez is delighted, he appears to be trying to think."don't you recognize me Ghosk?" she asks

The armored figure stares at the golden scorpion with blazing eyes, moments pass before he speaks "Kaalleezzz . . ."
No. 982450 ID: 8483cf

Spooky. Does Eghosco always appear ready to open a can of snake oil on every passerby?
No. 982559 ID: 322af8

Well that bodes slightly well. He remembers you. Tell him you and your group are going to pass through.
No. 982596 ID: 10c07d

Try to recruit him to the mission. Now we can have four members in the snake party.
No. 982615 ID: 0fae41

Convince him you and your snakes are no threat and to go about his rounds again, the less time around this unstable warrior the better. Make sure Lylen keeps her big fat mouth hinged.
No. 982729 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160705855638.png - (603.15KB , 657x858 , Pentacle152.png )

Lylene completely misses the danger of the situation 'Iss thiss wierdo alwayss like thiss?'

'No, be quiet and show some respect to your commanding officer'[/i] Kalez responds, she considers for a moment bringing Eghosco along to order around Lylene, but quickly dismisses the idea, the commander is not reliable enough, and could quickly turn on them if they aren't careful.

Eghosco's eyes drift towards the ceiling 'Ii caann't ffiinnd thee sssuunn Kaallezzz . . .'

Kalez tries to reason with the addled commander 'I can't help you there, but me and my serpents will leave you to your search, do you mind if we pass through here?'

Eghosco seems to respond but doesn't look in the scorpion's direction. 'Daanngerroouusss . . .The deeaad wwaalk iinn thhe sshhaadoowwsss, haavve too ffiind thhe sssun.'
No. 982730 ID: b1b4f3

I'm sure a light spell is within Kalez' power, but maybe she shouldn't cast it near the commander lest he be fixated on it.
No. 982731 ID: 8483cf

He likes to speak in abstract thoughts. Give him something he can sttach his own meaning to. Like "sunrise is a gift for the patient sentinel" or somesuch.
No. 982732 ID: 10c07d

No. 982756 ID: 3aa06e

Voting this as well, keep yourself between him and your allies just in case.
No. 983277 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160757408978.png - (511.52KB , 657x858 , Pentacle153.png )

Kalez's other two serpents arrive with the elevator, Sezeda ghasps in shock seeing the knight commander.
'Woah! who'ss long dark and brooding! Thiss where you been hiding all the man meat Duch?'

Duchess Kalez Sighs This is Commander Eghosco, now I need you two to-

Commander Eghosco? Eghosco Ejardon? Azzeki interupts 'but the Ejardons were wiped out decadesss ago I don't undersstand . . .'

'He can wipe me out anytime~'Sezeda adds

Channeling Kalez' increasing annoyance Azzeki retorts you realize Commander Eghosco should be over a hundred years old by now!

"Mmmm! thenn he'sss got a LOT of experienccce!" Sezeda coos
No. 983278 ID: b1b4f3

Ask the commander to show his face to your foolish followers.
No. 983279 ID: 0fae41

If you seriously want to spend the rest of your days down here, by all means go and further medical research, but being the only sane person down here will drive you crazy soon enough.
Now no more mackin' on the patients!
No. 983288 ID: 8483cf

It's so hard to find good professional help these days. No workplace romances!
No. 983304 ID: e2dc7c

Pinch Sezeda's "butt" with a crab claw, tell her to focus and not to lewd the zombies.
No. 983311 ID: 1473b9

Well, at least you have to concede that Sezeda has good taste, Kalez. I mean look at him, the things he could have done in his prime~

Anyway. It's time to move. We should avoid direct confrontations. We could use the commander's help, if he wishes to serve once more for a good cause.
No. 983335 ID: 3aa06e

Yeah, give her a pinch to remind her you brought her here for a mission.
No. 983344 ID: 322af8

Time to move the troops. We've got a job to do and time is of the essence. Move around the commander and go.
No. 983852 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160832883695.png - (640.47KB , 657x858 , Pentacle154.png )

Kalez avoids a playful pinch, Sezeda has made it very clear that she is unable to appreciate the pleasures of the fairer sex
instead the golden scorpion grabs her about the neck and pulls her onward and away from the knight commander.
Eghosko doesn't even react to the second two serpents as the pass.

'Ack! you never let me have any fun!' Sezeda whines
'Do it on your own time, besides Ghosk isn't interested in filth like you' Kalez responds

The word have more truth then she says
they aren't interested in Sezeda's mongrel flesh.
they lust for divine flesh from pure bloodlines

but Kalez was still surprise how strongly Eghosko responded to Lylene
the moron must be of good breeding, possibly a virgin too, Ghosk was practically animalistic in his reactions and As a half breed the illness is far weaker in him than most of the patients here.

'What are alll thessse doorsss? they llook odd.'Lylene asks

'They are the last barrier between life and death, yours specifically if you don't stand back'
Kalez warns, before continuing to muse to herself,
He was hungering for her clean flesh in the desperate hope it might cleanse his corrupted body.
but Aebin's been here many times recently he and his flesh would be nearly as pure as hers, he must have found some way to shield his presence.
a powerful spell no doubt, one he's decided not to share.
Kalez considers how she'll punish him for this deception.
No. 983855 ID: 0fae41

If he is found guilty by his own admission, and not just your spotless logic, his punishment will be lessened to a public dacking. If not, honestly, isn't this a punishment detail already?
No. 983858 ID: 1a4760

So, how pure is your own bloodline?
No. 983885 ID: 3aa06e

>>983858 That's a good question I'd also like to know the answer to. As well as what this new discovery we made of Lylene means for us outside of every creature locked down here wanting her blood or body.

As for Aebin, a surprise questioning is due to find out what else he has been hiding from us. How he got this particular spell if it's something he learned. Hold off on the punishment for now, in case he gets his mission done well, don't want to take that victory away from him.
No. 984428 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160923254494.png - (397.29KB , 657x858 , Pentacle155.png )

Lylene seems to take the danger as a challenge and gets closer to the door after being warned peering into some of the cells.

Kalez doesn't notice as she ponders her own breeding, other then a few traces of old priests she's as common as deserts sands, her position as Duchess is built on lies and stolen titles.

Twisting metal mixed with monstrous shriek.
A hand burst through the cell window grasping Lylene before she can recoil.

How does Kalez React?
No. 984432 ID: e51896

Kalez doesn't do anything (for a while) to let Lylene know the consequences of her actions of not following Kalez's warnings. She'll rescue Lylene once Lylene understands the weight of the situation.
No. 984433 ID: 10c07d

Yell at Lylene to take action, hopefully the girl listens and slices the arm clean off.
No. 984434 ID: df76b1

If thy neighbor's arm offend thee, cut it off.
No. 984435 ID: e2dc7c

Command Lylene to give it her top or skirt, as only her perfume can calm it down now.
No. 984436 ID: 0fae41

Nip this problem in the wrist with a pincer.
No. 984440 ID: 0f5613

Let her fend for herself on that one. If she loses clothing, that shall be a lesson.
No. 984441 ID: e0ad7e

I am on board for this.
No. 984448 ID: 00a2fa

It has her by the shirt. Cut off the shirt, cut out the nonsense.
No. 984454 ID: b1b4f3

Did the undead and the lich leading them exist BEFORE these royals succumbed to the plague?
No. 984474 ID: 3aa06e

Allow it to tear off a bit of clothing, but intervene the moment it tries to sink its claws into her neck. A little humiliation in front of her peers is a fair punishment for ignoring your warning.
No. 984549 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160940212989.png - (481.89KB , 657x858 , Pentacle156.png )

Kalez waits to see how this plays out

The breastplate is torn from Lylenes body 'EEEYAH!' she shrieks 'that pervert stole my top! nobody look!'
her plea goes ignored Sezeda snickers at her situation, Azzeki flushes at the sight, Kalez shares her appreciation of Lylene exposed lithe form.

What does Kalez do?
A)Kalez wants to punish Lylene and strips her further
B)Kalez wants to make Azzeki squirm and strips Lylene further
C)Kalez simply wants to see Lylene's body herself and strips her further
D) Having seen the danger has passed Kalez puts an end to such play and urges her serpents to continue
E)something else?

No. 984551 ID: 0fae41

B. This snake's fate is sealed.
No. 984552 ID: b1b4f3

In fact you really should get that breastplate back, in case she needs to fight something for real.
No. 984553 ID: d5825c

i think C would be amazing
No. 984555 ID: cd6a6d

No. 984556 ID: 887816

C, for curiosity
No. 984558 ID: e85a08


Sabotage her clothing more subtly, but in a way that everyone but Lylene notices so it might fall off later or tempt Azzeki
No. 984560 ID: e2dc7c

A is the justification, C is the real reason. Snip her bra with your claw so she can't hide her shame and remembers to be careful for the rest of this mission. Keep an eye out for opportunities to destroy the bottom half of her outfit.

Her incompetence is kinda cute after all, perhaps you can mold her into someone useful?
No. 984561 ID: d47474

No. 984562 ID: 10c07d

And get her breastplate back. If that’s not possible, or would be a waste of effort and time, command one of the other serpents to give Lylene their own breastplate. If Kalez does strip her further that would greatly damage the trust Lylene has in the scorpion.
No. 984566 ID: 463cea

C Those clothes with those gems looks quite expensive. Convince her to continue with only her swords, Bra and Panties.
No. 984568 ID: e51896

D. Her lesson was learned. But she won't be getting her breastplate back tk really hammer in the idea that what she did was stupid.
No. 984569 ID: 629f2e

No. 984572 ID: e0ad7e

D. Perhaps now she will learn to take this place serious now. But the view is appreciated.
"Let's keep going, but be smart about it, you see what overconfidence does."
No. 984573 ID: 3c2ba4

D.That breastplate is coming out of her salary btw...wait do we even pay her?
No. 984574 ID: f59bf7

C, but I'd really like Kalez to be more handsy too!!! That'll show her!!!
No. 984575 ID: 42b654

C what else she’s hiding under there.
No. 984579 ID: 8483cf

This. Subtle sabotage of that skirt for later, and and in a way that Lylene won't notice until it's too late.
No. 984590 ID: 322af8

D. We're going to need to keep on as much armor as possible what with possible enemies ahead.
No. 984606 ID: 5b0071

C) and toss it into the creature's cell
No. 984611 ID: 3aa06e

D. Keep it moving, more opportunities will come up if Lylene hasn't learned her lesson.
No. 984612 ID: 5ec3f5

D. Kalez should stay her serious self. Of course, if anything else happens to Lylene, that's none of her business :smirk:
No. 985103 ID: 0eed73

B. A taste of vulnerability may be just what Lyene needs right now. Might stop her from doing something stupid once things get really dangerous.
No. 985151 ID: 6f7a5a
File 160999658315.png - (545.11KB , 657x858 , Pentacle157.png )

Kalez stealthily snips weak points in Lylene's skirt so it will break but that it'll happen at a future point

Kalez doesn't have long to wait, after adjusting her loose bra Lylene tries to stow her scimitars, unable to take the strain the skirt fails.

Lylene gasps in shock 'Aah!'
No. 985154 ID: 10c07d

Allow Lylene to put her undergarment back in place. Hopefully that will teach the girl to listen to you and take this dungeon more seriously as you journey further in.
No. 985155 ID: 3ffcde

Tell Lylene that she is wasting valuable time trying to adjust her clothing and sternly order her to just leave them behind as punishment and to make up for lost time.
No. 985156 ID: 8483cf

Scold her for her poor choice in wardrobe, and suggest she leave the skirt behind in order to not have it hinder her later.
No. 985164 ID: b1b4f3

Tell her she should've gotten a more durable set of armor.
Can you fix the dress so she's not a useless blushing mess for the rest of the trip?
No. 985171 ID: 5b0071

Realize a little too late that you've just exposed a whole lot of that succulent noble flesh to any number of dungeon denizens.

The Knight Commander may have a stronger reaction if he sees this spectacle
No. 985173 ID: 8fab7a

This. Of course, helping does give you the chance to more closely appreciate her figure. And quirk an eyebrow at the... lucky underwear?

Still, this could get dangerous. Imprint on the young fool that, out of everyone here, she is now the most... exposed... to danger and should act with more care.
No. 985178 ID: 10c07d

Changing suggestion to these
No. 985225 ID: e2dc7c

Chastise her for letting her defenses down and command Azzeki to protect her by using her hands to cover Lylene.

Also remove that top, she's no champ and it's borderline heresy for her to insinuate as such after this show of weakness.
No. 985234 ID: 0fae41

Well Lylene, you got in a fight with a locked door and lost. Perhaps you should stick closer to Kalez for the rest of this errand.
No. 985542 ID: 0eed73

Allow her to reclothe herself to the best of her ability, but also make her explain her ridiculous 'mommy champ' underwear. I'm pretty sure that'd be more humiliating than actually losing said underwear.
No. 985574 ID: 6f7a5a
File 161053839917.png - (499.05KB , 657x858 , Pentacle158.png )

Kalez doesn't question Lylene's "Mommy's Champ" undergarments, they seem custom made, expensive and likely commissioned by Lylene's mother, Captain Eshekath.

she does however use a mending spell to repair the damage, neither her nor Lylene comment as the serpent redresses.

* * *

'this is where she fell' Kalez comments as she approaches the illuminated passageway.

'That fire? is that the Hydra?'Lylene keeps her voice to a low whisper, her confidence shaken
Sezeda scoffs Hydra's not big on lighting torches idiot, and theirs nothing to burn down her Azzeki then adds 'even if there were the Hydra would never be this quiet'

Kalez agrees, knowing the constant arguments those heads have all to well, 'She's not there, not anymore. Via Vardek has taken the Hydra and waits for us inside'

Sezeda cocks her head 'who?' Azzeki sighs in annoyance and chides 'Via Vardek, Maybe you'd know who she is if you paid attention to anyone without a penis' Sezeda smirks and responds 'Did someone say something? sorry I wasn't paying attention'

'Quiet you two! let me think!' Kalez snaps. The golden scorpion does think, she thinks of Via Vardek something she generally avoids. Vardek taught her most of what she knows and is exceedingly cunning, worse still she has an annoying talent for seeing the future which makes her dangerous beyond measure.

'I thought Vardek was just a relic?' Lylene squeaks

'Do you have any idea how dangerous some relics are?' Kalez retorts, though she is impressed Lylene actually remembored what she said, she sees fear in the young snakes eyes and answers the unasked question 'Vardek has my Hydra, if we leave now I'll never see it again.'

What does Kalez do?
No. 985575 ID: 10c07d

Give those snakes a lesson on who Via Vardek is.
No. 985577 ID: e2dc7c

Rescue the Hydra!
No. 985582 ID: 629f2e

Obviously we need to get the hydra back. You obviously lose in terms of preparation to the seer, so you'll need to beat her in terms of cunning and power.
No. 985583 ID: 8d6356

She sends Sezeda and Azzeki in to watch for traps and then deals with her hydra thief personally.
No. 985585 ID: 7a5e43

Yeah i like this option.
No. 985588 ID: b1b4f3

We need a bit more information. How much can Vardek see into the future? How much can they use this ability? How accurate is the future sight?
Whatever you do, I expect deception to fail. Can't use any clever tactics, so any fight would just be brute force.

You should approach with diplomacy first. See if there's something Vardek wants in exchange for the Hydra.
No. 985607 ID: 0fae41

Rush :redb:!
No. 985611 ID: 3aa06e

Lets rescue our dau- our hydra. Size up Via, how powerful that future seeing is, and her personality in general.
No. 985640 ID: 322af8

Send in the troops first. Then go in after they clear the room of any visible dangers.
No. 985648 ID: 0eed73

Best to assess Via's abilities and see about a plan of action. If she can see the future, then a few extra minutes of planning wouldn't hurt.
No. 986444 ID: 6f7a5a
File 161187386961.png - (462.10KB , 657x858 , Pentacle159.png )

'What do we do, mistress?' Azzeki asks.

Yes, mistress is the right word,’ Kalez responds, ‘Just as I am mistress to you, Via Vardek was my mistress.’ Kalez takes a moment to consider, ‘Well perhaps not exactly as how I am mistress to you.
After giving Sezeda a moment to roll her eyes Kalez continues, 'Via Vardek first taught me magic; her guidance is the foundation of everything I know but I have surpassed her in all regards save one.'

None of the serpents understand anything of magic and as such remain silent.

Kalez continues, 'Divination. Through magic she can see anywhere, anytime, into people’s minds--those who lived hundreds of years ago or wouldn't be born for centuries. Nothing is outside her grasp. Even now she could be reading your darkest secret of crimes you've yet to even commit. She could see a thousand futures for anyone here and engineer the most painful outcome.'

'That's impossible! No one could have such power!' protests Azzeki.

'Impossible yes, but also true. I've doubted her in the past and was made the fool for it. However, even the greatest powers have limits. She could know or do anything I've mentioned, but she can't do all of it. Every minute she spends in the dreamscape to view the past, present or distant places is a minute she loses in the real world. In addition, she has no direct control of fate. Any action she takes based on new information can dramatically change the futures she has seen. Thus, she has to keep checking those futures to make sure her plans are intact. It's maddening, really.
‘Vardek tried to teach me but I didn't have the patience for it.'
Kalez admits, but keeps to herself the mind crushing enormity of understanding that made it impossible.

Szeda just shakes her head ’well I don't understand any of this . . .'

Kalez sighs. This is why she hates dealing with Via Vardek when it's so much easier just to avoid her.

It's a difficult question, what DOES Kalez do?
No. 986445 ID: 094652

Contemplate the heir needed to inherit your insufferable mentor's final secret. You know they are not among the fools circling your greatness, but for that you should be ashamed. You should have looked for a promising student long ago; however endangering a colleague would be to your power, such an ability is the epitome of all wisdom and to lose it forever is to fail the living you swore to protect.

Then turn your mind to less troubling thoughts, like the types of suitors Lylene would be willing to accept. Nothing too demanding, but see if the fool will follow a lead instead of wallowing in idiocy and perverted old men.
No. 986446 ID: 0fae41

Just spend a couple minutes stopping and starting various strategies and changing your mind, then bullrush her while she's busy trying to read the future.
No. 986447 ID: 10c07d

This. This is the galaxy iq play
No. 986448 ID: b1b4f3

Nah she'd predict that too.
Just go on in without any plan at all.
No. 986449 ID: 10c07d

That is true, changing my suggest to this
No. 986452 ID: dcf013

Go visit Via Vardek then. Perhaps she could give you some info on Vivian and how she's able to pull off the feats she does.
No. 986454 ID: 3aa06e

This but with a few touches. Be ready to make snap on the fly decisions without any foresight or planning on what to follow up with. At the same time, do not allow her to narrow down the potential possible outcomes, she's likely going to try and do various things that eliminate potential outcomes.

Be ready to do something she would never consider you to do. Something that might go against your very character or at least how she sees your character as.

Anything you or your allies can do that disrupts her "future sight" will also help.
No. 986461 ID: 322af8

No point in worrying about it. If shes already seen the future then you won't be able to change that. Go in quickly and try to find your hydra before getting out. If battle happens do your best.
No. 987663 ID: 8cf71e
File 161303273765.png - (571.33KB , 657x858 , Pentacle160.png )

Let's just go in and hope for the best she informs the serpents.

Kalez enters the room Via Vardek is here who ushers the scorpion closer with the motion of her hand and a rasping whisper 'my wayward *cough* pupil Zarcadia, I'm so *cough* happy you're here . . .' to someone who didn't know Via the words might sounds kind.

Kalez notes the two prismaticans on either side of Vardek as her grandsons Vadico and Vahejak, the two eye the golden scorpion in turn with an almost feral hatred yet make no sound.
Kalez scowls back 'I see you're still keeping these dimwits around'

Vardek adopts a wounded tone 'Dico and Jaki take good care of me . . . after you *cough* left me here'

Kalez caring none for the act retorts 'You're lucky I let you live, and if you just let me take my hydra back maybe I'll let you keep on living'

'not *cough* yet . . . I've been waiting so long *cough*, please sit with me a while' Vardek again motions for Kalez to come closer 'I was (cough) ab- *cough* about to do a *coughing* reading, you'll *cough* like this one' Via lies
Kalez has received countless "readings" from Via Vardek across a hundred years and never enjoyed a single one
No. 987664 ID: b1b4f3

Where's the exit? I don't see one.
Just go to the exit. See what happens if you refuse the reading.
No. 987667 ID: df76b1

You are in Rome, and when in Rome...

Diplomacy is running thin, but you're going to go along with it, because if things go loud, you'll have to kill everyone in this room.

Be regal, but be patient.
No. 987671 ID: 5b0071

Endure the old meddler. Just be prepared to cow your escorts into silence about what is about to transpire
No. 987672 ID: 10c07d

Play along and hope to get this over with without any violence.
No. 987679 ID: 2ad7db

Let her know you’ll sit with her once you see for yourself that the Hydra is safe and unharmed, don’t give in until you can confirm she hasn’t done anything to them.
No. 987723 ID: 05a075

Flip her table. She’ll never see it coming.
No. 987741 ID: 629f2e

If at any point in this interaction, we intend to become violent, she will always be a step ahead of us. The more time we take settling in, the more time we grant her to move her pieces into place to make her victory certain.

If we want to take the diplomatic route, then we need to stick wholly to it. By the time we decide to strike, it will be too late for us to win. If we want to fight, then we should strike early and strike hard.
No. 987747 ID: a59168

Tell her that you're only interested if she helps you with Vivian
No. 987778 ID: 0fae41

"Nope. 'Twas foretold that your guards would attack me while I was listening to your reading."
No. 988683 ID: 1d109c
File 161389226807.png - (538.81KB , 657x858 , Pentacle161.png )

Kalez looks around the room, she knows it should be a large chamber but tattered curtains block of most of it.

'thisss isss magic? how doesss painted wood know the futurre' Azzeki comments skeptically.

Kalez shushes the serpent and locks eyes with her former master 'I won't endure any of your drivel till you show me that my Hydra are unharmed!'

Vardek blinks feigning surprise but your hydra are already harmed *cough*, the sooner you listen the sooner you will be able to *cough* tend to them.'

'I'm not playing your games! show me my Hydra!' Kalez attempts to overturn the table, but it doesn't budge.

'oh! *cough* it looks like someone bolted the *cough* table to the floor' Vardek chuckles to herself 'why would *cough* anyone do that?'
Kalez hisses and glares at the ancient prismatican.

Vardek flips over a card '"A contest between thieves"' naming it 'Zarcadia Kalez and Garrin Veraki, desert thieves will find each other at odds, fighting for the same prize'

Kalez scoffs 'the meaning of these cards are not literal you senial old crone! you've forgotten your own game.'

Ever bemused Vardek just smiles 'have I?'

Kalez hates this, she always hated her masters games, hates feeling trapped. Kalez grits her chelicerae and tries to calm herself 'Garrin has ever been loyal to me, are you certain he wants something I have? The rogue Vivian Hearth might not the card instead refer to her?'

Vardek' infuriating smirk remains 'don't worry we'll get to Vivian Hearth, shall I continue?'
No. 988685 ID: b1b4f3

Fine. Let her continue. This almost seems like useful information. You can prepare for conflict with Garrin, or... find out what he wants, and if you can't both get what you want.
No. 988688 ID: e85a08

Just sit there silently and pretend to be bored.
No. 988690 ID: 10c07d

Just deal with the reading. If you sit through it we might get the hydra back without any violence.
No. 988701 ID: ca2950

Remember that if Garrin is going to betray you, it might be because you take action to prevent him from betraying you and he betrays you for it.

Happens all the time.
No. 988720 ID: a59774

The sooner we are done with her, the better. Besides, a little bit of future reading never does harm, as long as you don't get obsessed with it. It is as you said, it helps you see all posible posibilities in the future, not THE fututre.
No. 988722 ID: 322af8

Allow her to continue. As long as shes happy this might go without a fight.
No. 988771 ID: 3aa06e

Remember that she's possibly telling you this to engineer fate in her favor or against you. Simply take note of the information she tells you for later.

I suppose we can prod for other subjects for Via to look into, keep her distracted on the possible future of others rather than this potential confrontation. Allow her to continue while thinking of whose fates you'll ask about.
No. 988774 ID: 094652

Take detailed notes so you can forget her insufferable gloating. Offer one of your retinue as an 'intern' so she'll stop being so 'lonely'.
Remember, you intend to be the biddy old lady spouting mystic knowledge to dimwits one day. Find out if having a harem of fawning apprentices is preferred or reviled among the old, now rather than later.
No. 988935 ID: a59168

Perhaps the treasure that Vardek is referring to is the princess. If Garrin takes interest in princess Reefa, that wouldn't actually be bad. Because as long as she doesn't find out about Midas, it doesn't matter if you or Garrin has her. If this happens, the only thing you need to make sure is that Garrin takes her somewhere far away or something like that.

Anyway, tell Vardek to continue.
No. 989162 ID: 1d109c
File 161431828528.png - (420.76KB , 657x858 , Pentacle162.png )

Kalez mulls the the concept around, acting on Garrin's potential betrayal may be the exact thing to cause the betrayal Vardek wants, unless Vardek wants her to be defiant towards the prediction and not act on a suspicion she might normally feel, in which Garrin might betrayer her only if she does nothing. Kalez starts to feel a painful throb in her head and groans. 'Fine continue'
Vardek chuckles 'you don't have anything he wants, but he has something you want' she flips the card and names it '"Virgin Sacrifice"'

'Reefa Multero' Kalez concedes

Vardek claps her hands together in delight 'yes! YES! the crown princess, now you see'

Sezeda takes momentary interest'boo! I like thisss card better when it hasss the naked man on it' Kalez considers donating Sezeda to Vardek, all past donations have never been seen again so this idea appeals to the scorpion.

Kalez Glares at Vardek'you're the one who wants to hold the girl's beating heart in your hand not me! If Garrin can stop her from finding out about Midas he can keep her.'

Vardek sighs'. . . and Garrin could crown himself king'

Kalez is invested in defending her acolyte if only to counter her master 'Garrin is loyal to this cause! he desires nothing more than a taste of royal flesh, once he's had it the allure will be gone she'll be nothing more than a crooked toothed beanpole and he'll caste her aside like any other girl'

'he won't let her be sacrificed'

Kalez objects 'neither will I! That is not my plan! I won't kill her.' Kalez doesn't need Vardek to call the lie for what it is.
Vardek calls the lie anyways 'yes you will, of course you will, you need to, there's no other way for Midas to be crowned king'

Kalez is filled with doubt, her words are weak 'you don't decide the future . . .'

Vardek gives a motherly 'My dear Zarcadia, don't cry. destiny is liberating.'

Kalez fights back tears, and fights back memories of past horrors. while she still has the strength to fight she refocuses on Garrin 'he won't know'

Disappointment is clear on Vardek's face Kalez sees the temptation to torment her further, Vardek relents and answers instead 'unless someone tells him'

Hatred becomes Kalez you threaten yourself you stupid old crone! and for nothing.

'Ahahahaha *coughing*' Via Vardek cackles 'I wasn't talking about me telling him'
No. 989164 ID: 10c07d

“If not you then who?”
No. 989166 ID: b1b4f3

Who else knows about the plan? ...aside from everyone in this room, now?
Also why are you gonna kill the princess, exactly?

Wait, she said Garrin could be crowned king... maybe you could use that? Garrin's under your thumb now, you could keep it that way, even when he's king. Use him as a puppet king. He doesn't have anything you want *right now*, so let him have what he wants now in exchange for giving you something you want *in the future*.
That's the real way of using destiny to your advantage. Find victory in an inevitable defeat rather than struggling against it.

The alternative is to set up an ambush to kill or otherwise disable Garrin as soon as he comes back, so you can do what you want to the princess. That's probably the wrong move. Public opinion is against you already, do you really want to commit more crimes? Perhaps by allowing Garrin to marry the princess you could even get her on your side, somehow.

Also, obviously the third card is going to be the person that tells Garrin.
No. 989167 ID: e85a08

Trying to learn the future through Vardek seems unnecessarily risky.

Try instead to reverse engineer what she's telling you to discern her plans. If you follow her advice, who or what would most benefit?
No. 989168 ID: 10c07d

This seems like the smart way to go about things. Don’t let her get the best of you!
No. 989169 ID: 094652

Whether Garrin is killed off or becomes king, he'll point an army at the undead and that is where you need him. Any non-political enchantments preventing Midas from obtaining divine-class weapons while Reefa is alive can be worked around with careful hacking, which is what you're overtaxing the peasants for.
In short, do your job and don't listen to this predatory lobbyist.
No. 989183 ID: 629f2e

Let's make two assumptions:

1: The future isn't set in stone, and by knowing what lies ahead we are capable of changing it. We risk causing the exact predictions we wished to prevent, but we at least have the potential to steer away once knowledge of the path is granted.

2: We cannot prevent Garrin from being told about what will happen to Reefa. Even if we drastically alter our course of action to put Reefa in no harm, he could be given false information and act on it. Whoever betrays us to warn him will do so, and we lack the knowledge to prevent it. Since Garrin will be told, Garrin will betray us. This seems to be the basis of Vardek's divination. Even if she gives us a name, it may happen before we have a chance to intercept their acts.

So, what options does this leave us with? Let's go down the list:

1: Discard Garrin entirely. He is unreliable, and should be discarded.
-Pros: Straightforward, outcomes are easy to understand.
-Cons: Discards a valued minion, may cause significant problems if he escapes, definitely a case of us inciting the betrayal.

2: Persuade Garrin to stay loyal, grant him an incentive that may outweigh or invalidate whatever he's been told.
-Pros: Potential to keep Garrin, succeeding lets you tell Vardek that her destiny is to shove it up her fat ass.
-Cons: Potential to lose him anyway, working against fate is an uphill battle, you would have to make good on a generous offer for this to succeed.

3: Discredit the things he will be told, so that he has no motive to betray you.
-Pros: Potential to keep Garrin, cheap.
-Cons: Potential to lose him anyway, very very difficult since you won't know the exact details of what he will have been told, your charisma score is probably too low for this route anyways.

All in all, I think our best option is to try and persuade Garrin away from betrayal, while keeping as close an eye on him as we're able. It's very likely that we may lose him anyway with this choice, but it's a gamble that may be worth taking. Having Garrin is better than not having him, and he may be worth whatever fee it takes to keep him loyal. Even if that fee involves complicating your plan in regards to the royal family significantly. After all, you only have to make good on any promises if he stays loyal. And if he does, then that's one more piece you have on the board to maneuver around any tricky situations.
No. 989185 ID: 1ebee5

How about this. Tell him Reefa's safe if she's very far away. Omit what the threat is, or be very vague. Possibly play it off her capture as a desire to protect her. They elope. He gets the girl, she's out of the picture, somebody else has to take the seat of power.
No. 989189 ID: 86f392

Perhaps I should elaborate a bit.
He said you'd fight over the prize, which is Reefa.
However, that's a mistake. Your real prize is the rule of Midas.
Ergo, the fight is avoidable. Very much so.
Reefa is a big obstacle to the rule of Midas. However, your goal is simply to keep her out of the seat of power, so that Midas may take it.
If Reefa is very far away, maybe if she elopes to self-imposed exile or is forced to flee by "somebody" who lusts after her, the little game is avoided, as she will fail to take the seat of power.
Thus, if you, for example, tell "somebody" that a prophecy foresaw her death if she stays close to the seat of power, that the further away she is the safer she is, he'll have motive to get her to flee. Also to keep her away. Just omit that *you* are the threat. Though if he figures it out, a fight with you would still be tough, so tough that it'd still be easier to flee.
He gets what he desires. You get what you desire. If they break exile, well, as a fallback, their death still works.
No. 989193 ID: cd99b9

>>989189 >>989185
This is magnificent. Seconding this, especially the prophecy part.
No. 989201 ID: a59168

>the treasure is Reefa
Damn, I totally nailed that one.

"I suppose you wouldn't know the name of the person that informs Garrin then, would you?"
No. 989217 ID: 629f2e


That's not a bad plan. Actions speak louder than words, so if we go out of our way to show concern for the Princess' wellbeing, and take actions that wouldn't line up with whatever Garrin is told, he may decide that the rumor he's been told was a lie. Informing him that the prediction Vardek gave was that she'd die is especially clever, as it raises the stakes for going against you. Sure, you could be lying, but is he going to risk her life to determine that on little more than a hunch? Especially when your actions paint a wholly different story?

If we want to prevent a future in which Garrin works against us, this is looking like our best option. As with most, he could still choose to not trust us anyways. But if he's that insistent in not believing in us, then it was a lost cause trying to keep him loyal in the first place.
No. 989250 ID: 3aa06e

Consider this plan and continue with the reading. It'll give you peace of mind to think rationally so we can get what we came here for.

"I suppose the next card is who informs him...or is this the part where you keep that information a secret?"
No. 989251 ID: c96df6

Extra bit:
You could actually order him to flee with her. Help him get her far away. Let him borrow a ship, perhaps, as that would get them quite far.
No. 990764 ID: 1d109c
File 161552056358.png - (484.62KB , 657x858 , Pentacle163.png )

The King of Pentacles craves the princess's soul, even without divining she sense it.
He promises so much power just for one deed, Kalez won't do it for as tempting as the offer is the scriptures speak of resisting and clinging to what matters, To never give in. Kalez won't give in to Vardek, she'll achieve her goals her own way. Whether it is as simple as sending Garrin and the princess to the farthest corner of the world or some other way she'll make it happen.

Kalez centers herself and addresses Vardek'if not you than who?'

Vardek flips the card 'Liar's prison inverted: a truth speaker set free'
Kalez's immediate thoughts reach her mouth 'that's a new one'
Vardek nods in agreement 'it speaks of Daiqio Xietzu who will tell Garrin everything and beg for his aid'

Kalez scoffs 'My scribe? Laughable, she doesn't even know about Garrin let alone anything of value, and she couldn't find Garrin even she did'

Vardek Shrugs in her typical way ' . . . and yet through pure dumb luck she walks right into Garrin's lap . . . perhaps in more ways then one.'

Kalez focuses ignoring the tempting final comment 'I don't think so, she's under constant watch there's no way she can leave this city'

'Hopefully by more competent servants than the ones you brought here . . .'Vardek indicates to Sezeda, who's lost interest in the reading 'Heeyyy talll darrk annd danngerrousss, granny sssee me in yourr futurre ' she hisses as she cuddles up with Vahejak

Vardek smiles at this and licks her lips while staring at Sezeda, ' . . . but seeing as Xietzu been gone three days by now I imagine competence is in short supply among your household'

Pushing her embarassing serpent from her mind Kalez responds 'What nonsense are you speaking, do you mean in three days she will some how escape?'

'I mean what I say plainly, your scribe is gone she's with Garrin now' Delight fills Vardek's features.

'What!?' Kalez Exclaims

Via Vardek cackles with mad laughter'KREeAhaHAha! even now your Acolyte Nethaar races back to the castle to tell you what I'm telling you now! and it's more than just a missing scribe! it's so much worse!'
No. 990765 ID: b1b4f3

...and the final card is going to be you besieged by enemies, no doubt. Don't even bother letting her flip it over. Take it and look for yourself.
No. 990767 ID: e2dc7c

Defend your snake's honor! She just wants love and there is nothing wrong with that!
No. 990770 ID: 094652

Slap your mentor. However wise and prepared she may be, her bullying is a crass insult and a sign of true weakness; for all her power, all she can think about is how badly her life sucks and how to make your kingdom suck more.
Order her to get her head back in the game, and come up with a strategy that will mitigate this clusterfrack.
No. 990771 ID: 629f2e

The problem with people who can see the future is that no matter how much you want to hit them, you have to assume they've already seen the future where you try to do so.

Fun fact though: just because you see a future where you get beaten up doesn't necessarily mean you can prevent it. You may make different and smarter choices, absolutely, but you also might just fail.

What I'm saying is that your mentor has crossed the line, and is in need of some humbling herself. Though I would suggest opening with a spell rather than a slap, as it looks lamer to whiff a swing than it does to have a spell deflected. My personal spell choice would be swipe, you won't be out of luck if that gets deflected.
No. 990799 ID: e51896

Say you'd rather not look at the final card. You don't believe in destiny and make your own path.
No. 990984 ID: fcf226

So far, it'd be easy to prove/disprove, as well as deal with. You'd just have to call him up. Tell him you have to add a task. Should he see your scribe, he is to get her to arrive here. She may possess false papers placed to expose spies. Some sort of stuff like that.

However, that will have to wait. After the last card is the hydra. Get this over with. Put out the fires after.
No. 993022 ID: 1d109c
File 161665216142.png - (523.55KB , 657x858 , Pentacle164.png )

Kalez clenches her claws in frustration
she has left Vardek alone plotting in the shadows to long, her former master needs humbling-
mid thought Vadico hits her hard in a shin, the prismatican shakes his head indicating for her not to try what ever she was going to do.
She'll have to deal with the younger Vardeks if she wants to get to Via.

Kalez curses.'Damn you Via Vardek! I don't believe in destiny! I will make my own path! show me no more cards'
Vardek glares back 'YOUR path leads to annihilation, until you concede this point and are willing to obey my guidance I will show you the truth no matter how unpleasant'
No. 993023 ID: 1d109c
File 161665260240.png - (653.04KB , 657x858 , Pentacle165.png )

Before Kalez can respond Vardek flips the next card '"Treason in the streets", Nethaar will even use those words if you give him the chance'

Kalez groans 'What now? an army marching on my gates?'

'no . . . well at least no yet' Vardek smirks 'your acolyte comes bearing parchment, the words of a diviner intent on destroying all of us'

Kalez knows where Vardek is going with this and refuses to accept it 'There are no other diviners in this kingdom! and there never will be!'

I lied when I told you that, not that you have ever believed the lie' Vardek sighs 'you looked so hard to find one, to replace and destroy me.'

'yes! damn you witch! I wanted- I still want to kill you'Kalez seethes as she vents her long held hatred.

Vardek cackles again 'Khahaha but you couldn't find one strong enough! so you got desperate and you made your own!'

Kalez interrupts giving a name to her fear'that's impossible! Diavola Channler is dead! I killed her with my own claws!'

Vardek continues as if her former pupil had not spoken '-but there's the problem with diviners, just like me she saw you for you really are

Kalez paces and spits 'that disgusting minstrel is dead! ten years dead, I burned out her throat with searing oils, I tore out her tongue and stitched her lying mouth shut-

'your second attempt if I recall' Vardek adds.

the thought of handling a second diviner is nearly beyond Kalez -and then wrapped her with spiked chains hooked to her flesh and buried her in a mine I collapsed onto her, there's no way she's alive!

'indeed, A woman would need incredible foresight to survive such an ordeal' with that final comment a wide disgusting grin spreads across Vardeks sickly face.

Kalez can't handle anymore, she's at the brink, eight more cards are NOT happening, she either needs to concede to Vardek's visions of doom or stand defiantly against them
No. 993029 ID: b1b4f3

Don't be foolish. The entire point of divination is to gain information that can be used to steer your path away from disaster.
She is tormenting you, yes, but she is showing you this because apparently, she goes down after you do. Maybe what happens is that someone manages to cure the undead curse after you're taken out of power?

Tell her to give you guidance. Then take it with a grain of salt. Or maybe a mountain of salt. After all, she can lie about her divinations. She already did once, regarding there being no more diviners. That means she foretold Diavola Channler's coming, which means she predicted your actions. Did she plan so far ahead that she knew Diavola would lead to your downfall 10 years after her death? Yet, I suppose she wasn't able to see much further than that, and did not realize that your downfall would lead to hers. A Pyrrhic victory she was not able to accept.
So either she's going to help you avoid her fate and thus hers, or she's steering you into a different loss state that she can escape from. Knowing her "guidance" can help you decide which of those it is.
No. 993060 ID: 10c07d

Listening to the divination will give us invaluable information about the future that can guide our actions, it would be smart to let Via finish no matter how upsetting the news is. Perhaps Kalez should take a small break from the divinations to calm herself down a bit. We could pull one of our snake girls aside and they could help with that.
No. 993064 ID: 094652

Vardek has outed herself as a liar. Flip the remaining eight cards, but verify her claims with your spy network. You cannot trust the ramblings of a spiteful mastermind more than your own network.

You made a mistake, and gave a diviner to the undead. But Vardek sat back and laughed as you made it happen. You need to take more trust(but verify) risks, or your paranoid stagnation will only help your enemies.
No. 993082 ID: 629f2e


Information is tempting. Knowledge is power, so your gut instinct is to collect as much as possible.

But this information isn't like that. It's poison. Do you really think Vardek is telling us these things so that we can overcome it and win the day? How kind of her. No, that's not what this is about. If this was truly going to help us avert this fate, would she really be telling it to us outright?

I think she has some other agenda here. Off the top of my head, she vould be stalling us. If she holds us for just long enough, the first of her divinations may take place before we can act to go against them. Or perhaps she's preparing a powerful spell for the almost inevitable fight to wipe us out quickly. Forget stalling,.tje goal might just be to push our mental state to such a place that we make mistakes that lead to this future.

Via Vardek is not here to help us. She is not here to show us how to change fate. She wants this horrible future to take place so that she can hold her superiority above us, and we should act under the assumption that her actions are all in favor of such. Flipping over those 8 cards and hearing their meanings won't suddenly make out future better. That's too much information being controlled by this bitch, it carries an almost hopeless inevitability to it if we accept that listening to her is valuable.

We need to fight. Start throwing spells, and start paving a future that defies Vardek's predictions.
No. 993083 ID: 629f2e


Also, just gonna toss this out there:

Do you really want to spend the mext updates sitting here watching Vardek flip over cards, or do you want to get into a high-leveled magic duel with guards involved?
No. 993084 ID: f28e46

Pick up cards, rip them to pieces.
No. 993104 ID: cf481e

>I lied when I told you that, not that you have ever believed the lie
So she admits she'd previously lied?
"If you lied about that, how much have you lied to me about all this?
Why should I trust a word you say?
You just admitted you have motive to see me fall."

Whatever she says, DEFY HER.
She's admitted to your face that she'll lie. If it's at critical spots, it'd be worse to be misled.

Also, if you read a bit more deeply, there's somebody who sees the future besides your failed fabricated attempt.
You just failed to either get them, or they were all too weak.
Though if they were that good, they'd see how to avoid your clutches.

Last bit I'm curious about. Motives.
Why do you hate her?
Is it related to why she hates you?
No. 993122 ID: 322af8

Should probably demand your Hydra as that's why you're there. Then leave with said hydra.
No. 993262 ID: 3aa06e

Defy, you're not even going to consider 8 more readings unless you can see with your own eyes and feel with your own hands or claws that Via has your Hydra. Even then, these readings haven't helped us and won't help us if we just submit and accept fate.

She's admitted to lying, if Via has a solution to the futures she has mentioned it will only benefit her and her alone. The way she's delivering all this on top of you seems to be with the intent to break your morale, make you desperate for any solution: especially from her. What's to say that some of these futures are just bluffs, false threats meant to keep you paranoid and unsure of every action you take. It'll be easy for her to manipulate you if you're desperate to avoid a fate she foresees for you, real or not.
No. 993264 ID: e51896

Tell her that even if these predictions come true, she is only showing you the doom of the path you're heading down, and keeping you blind of all the triumphs, rewards, and other good fortune that you'll achieve just to scare and spite you.

Also let her know that even if you concede and change your ways by going down a different future, what is to say that the new path you decide to choose to avoid this path wont be far worse than the path you're currently heading towards now?
No. 993795 ID: 0eed73

This. Strategically, it's better to see the rest of the cards. Narratively, now's the time to flip the table, trade blows, and hope someone hot ends up naked.
No. 997565 ID: 1d109c
File 161929310828.png - (493.36KB , 657x858 , Pentacle166.png )

>Don't be foolish. The entire point of divination is to gain information that can be used to steer your path away from disaster.
>Listening to the divination will give us invaluable information about the future that can guide our actions,
>Flip the remaining eight cards, but verify her claims with your spy network.
Kalez stares the cards infused with divination they seem to grow larger in her mind,a long atrophied second sight compels her to gaze into them. she needs the knowledge
Vardek's knowledge.
The golden scorpion breaks her gaze from the cards for a moment and gazes instead into the face of her old master. A grin is spread wide across the ancient prismatican's face
'NOOO!' Kalez screams and swipes the cards off the table 'I'm done with your games! I'm done with your lies! give me my Hydra!'

Vardek attempts a calm response but the snarling anger she feels cannot be fully masked 'I lie only to protect you from your own stupidity!'

'Another lie, how many times have you lied to me before? can you even speak truth?' Kalez cannot revel in in Vardek's frustration, she desperately tries to keep her focus on the present.

'You don't want honesty you only want to be right, and you never are' Vardeks words rumble with a low growl

'All I want is my Hydra! Kalez gasps feeling great amount of pain in her head

'...and all I want is the princess,' Vardek's growling grows deeper, deeper than her withered frame should allow 'are we going to make a deal or are you going to do something very very stupid?'
No. 997566 ID: 10c07d

I say it’s time to do something stupid. Vardek can’t see our future attacks if she can’t see at all. Cast a scry ward around her to temporarily take away her sight of the room. (It works like that right?) Then before Vadico can react cast a point blank crystal barrage on him.
No. 997569 ID: b1b4f3

SHE wants the princess. Finally her true motivation is revealed. Vardek wants the princess so she can sacrifice her herself.

This is leverage. Use it. Make a deal. One that leaves enough wiggle room for you to use it to your own advantage. Or one that you can simply break.
No. 997572 ID: 094652

You are both acting like spoiled brats fighting over each others' toys. Leave her to her misery. Find the Hydra yourself.
No. 997578 ID: 629f2e


There's no way we're giving her that, and her ability to see the future means we can't even bluff it. Seems that we'll be doing something very stupid then.
No. 997632 ID: 322af8

Go for the Hydra. That's your goal. Have your guards go after the enemy guards around you. Battle is imminent.
No. 1000717 ID: 1d109c
File 162131323074.png - (525.67KB , 657x858 , Pentacle167.png )

Pain in the golden scorpion's head coalesces into the mass of traumas and manias, the dull pain she lives with every day.
A calming clarity emerges "I don't make deals with my inferiors!" She states

Kalez castes SCRYWARD on the room, As a counter it cannot be blocked! all future sight is prevented!
a glowing ward that seems to clear the air fills the room.

"I suspected as much." Via Vardek murmurs in irritation.

Kalez has defeated Vardek once before, she knows she can do so again.
No. 1000719 ID: 1d109c
File 162131353011.png - (581.05KB , 657x858 , Pentacle168.png )

With her many limbs Kalez can cast multiple spells a turn!

Dico Vardek seems dazzled and angry but ready to strike out
Kalez casts CRYSTAL BARAGE on Dico

Shards of energy blast into the Prismatican
Dico Vardek is blinded from his mindlinked foresight and is unable to predict the spell cast nor interrupt it

the knight cries out in surprise more then pain, his armour protecting him from most of the damage.

A Vardek will be acting next, brace for attack!

Can you guess the target(s),the type of attack, or the direction of the strike?
if you can guess correctly the target(s) will be better prepared to withstand the surprise strike

No. 1000721 ID: 094652

... You seriously wonder why she doesn't just scry her way to victory? There is so much context she doesn't know under the cover of a good information security system, yet she arrogantly acts like she's seen it all.

Okay I'm confused. So... Kalez was the one who mind-blinded Dico... who is Vardek's son? Or is Vardek a species name?
I expect Vardek to activate a physical trap, it's the one thing that will bypass all your magical defenses and blindside your pride between magic users.
No. 1000722 ID: 10c07d

I’m guessing an attack from Vahejak on Sezeda seeing how she’s apparently “cuddled up” with them at the moment.
I’m guessing it’ll be a panicked sliced with their hook hand or whatever weapon they’re holding. It should be easy to dodge if Sezeda knows it’s coming.
No. 1000836 ID: 322af8

I assume Via will attack Kalez with a magic attack from the front. She should brace for that.
No. 1000845 ID: 629f2e


Can you guess the target(s),the type of attack, or the direction of the strike?

I'm gonna be lame and guess these separately instead of making one specific guess of what will happen next, that way at least one of my guesses are more likely to be right.

The target will be Sezeda.
The attack will be magical.
The attack will come from behind.
No. 1001292 ID: 3aa06e

Guessing an attack from Via towards Kalez of magical nature. As far as we know, Via considers Kalez the biggest threat in the room. Our subordinates can tank a hit if we're wrong.
No. 1001438 ID: 1d109c
File 162173288863.png - (414.99KB , 657x858 , Pentacle169.png )

Azzeki cries out to her cousin "Sezeda watch that mean right hook!" and tosses her a shield

Sezzeda catches the shield and turns in time to block the strike from Jaki Vardek.
"I finally find a guys who'sss into me and I gotta kick hiss assss, I hate my life"

"If you lose on purpose again I swear to the gods I'll turn you into a pair of boots!" Kalez hisses

"Ugh, I WON'T" Sezeda groans and rolls her eyes

Kalez: Done
Sezeda: Ready!
Azzeki: Ready!
Lylene: Ready!

Select a single character to act!

No. 1001445 ID: 0fae41

Lylene: Strike Vadico for striking your duchess!
No. 1001446 ID: 10c07d

Dico dropped his weapon. Azzeki, quickly pick it up with your tail and use the blunt end to hit Via Vardeck in the side of the head to knock her out. It shouldn’t be too hard to knock someone of her age out quickly.
No. 1001448 ID: 629f2e

Vadico is disarmed, so he seems like an easy target at the moment. Lylene, deal with him.
No. 1002549 ID: 1d109c
File 162275327820.png - (545.18KB , 657x858 , Pentacle170.png )

Lylene falls upon Vadico in a flurry of flashing steel.

Unable block the younger Vardek's plate armour has to endure the attacks, a task it completes taking little more than scratches.

Vadico himself though largely uninjured is dazed and off balance from the repeated attacks, in addition a single strike tears a gash on his head that oozes oily black blood.

A Vardek will be acting next, brace for attack!
No. 1002550 ID: 10c07d

Vadico may try to reach out and grab something to rebalance himself. Lylene should make sure that something isn’t her bra which he could easily tear off.
No. 1002552 ID: 629f2e

Dico's probably going to need time to collect himself, so I suspect the next attack will be a magical strike from Via herself. Kalez seems the most likely target for her.
No. 1002560 ID: 322af8

Kalez should brace for a possible magical attack from Via. Seems like the most possible move seeing everyone else is currently reacting to being hit or has made a move.
No. 1003052 ID: 92c0f9

I think Via will attack lylene for her insolence on her allie
No. 1003860 ID: 9b127b
File 162433002417.png - (550.30KB , 657x858 , Pentacle171.png )

Vadico tumbles to the ground, at first seemingly against his will but descent turns into a fluid motion as he reaches the floor where his discarded pole-arm lies.

with and upward motions Dico stabs at lylene, the serpent dodges the strike aimed at her chest but loses a sword in exchange.

Kalez: Done
Sezeda: Ready!
Azzeki: Ready!
Lylene: Done

Select a single character to act!

No. 1003861 ID: 0fae41

Snake punch Vadico!
No. 1003863 ID: 10c07d

Knock his lights out!
No. 1003866 ID: 10c07d

Should probably clarify we want punch snake Azzeki to do the punching
No. 1003869 ID: 322af8

Sezeda take a swipe at Jadi with your weapon. Best to keep these attackers on the defensive as much as possible.
No. 1003874 ID: a8318a

Yeah it violates the normal turn order to suggest this but Sezeda and Azzeki pool your collective snakeiness and give Vadico a double uppercut, I would say give em a double wrapping but people here are already deadset on the punching idea.
No. 1004003 ID: 3aa06e

Azzeki, tag team with Lylene and punch Vadico maybe get a hold of his clothing if you can during that punch.
No. 1004204 ID: 9b127b
File 162467811367.png - (560.15KB , 657x858 , Pentacle172.png )

Azzeki slithers around Vadico coiling him in a tight bind.
She tears at his armor but loses a belt in exchange.
"You little pesst!!" she curses

Via Vardek seems to watch with intent, but makes no aggressive actions

it's Sezeda's turn to act, what does she do?
No. 1004206 ID: 0fae41

Shield bash. Stun Azzeki's prey.
No. 1004207 ID: 10c07d

This take advantage of him being wrapped up and being a little shaken
No. 1005590 ID: 9b127b
File 162633629188.png - (600.77KB , 657x858 , Pentacle173.png )

Sezeda dives into the fray hoping to team up with her cousin and take down Vadico.
the Prismatican knight however proves more than helpless prey, he deflect her shield strike and with counter strike delivers a vicious gash to Sezeda's arm

Kalez: Ready!
Sezeda: Ready!
Azzeki: Ready!
Lylene: Ready!

Select a single character to act!

No. 1005593 ID: 10c07d

Kalez: Use swipe on Vadico’s weapon, polish on the floor beneath Vahejak, and slave on the undead serpent in the back of the room, commanding him to attack Vahejak
No. 1005668 ID: 629f2e


This is a pretty good plan of action, let's do this.
No. 1006441 ID: 9b127b
File 162737363268.png - (476.08KB , 657x858 , Pentacle174.png )

Kalez uses multi-limb to cast multiple spells

Kalez casts SWIPE on Vadico's weapon

Vadico's weapon appears in her hand

Kalez casts POLISH at Vahejak's feet
a shimmering slick golden glow covers the floor

Kalez casts SLAVE on standard bearer Sir Gukri
Gukri's eyes swirl as Kalez exerts her control.

"Weak minded fool . . . " Via Vardek mutters

A Vardek will be acting next, brace for attack!
No. 1006443 ID: 629f2e


Via Vardek would be the biggest threat right now. Jaki would probably slip up due to the polish spell and Dico is disarmed, so presume a spell attack is incoming.

Kalez taking a hit would be the worst since she can deal out the most damage, so I suggest that she brace herself.
No. 1006444 ID: 10c07d

If Via wanted to fight she would have done something already. I think Azzeki should watch out for Vadico’s claws.
No. 1006473 ID: 322af8

Jaki might not be aware of the spell under his feet and he's still armed. I'd argue he is the biggest threat to look out for a flailing swipe is still a swipe after all.
No. 1006948 ID: 9b127b
File 162786865615.png - (588.34KB , 657x858 , Pentacle175.png )

Jaki lunges at Kalez but slips and falls

Kalez: Done
Sezeda: Ready!
Azzeki: Ready!
Lylene: Ready!

Select a single character to act!

No. 1006965 ID: b2aff1

Azzeki, tighten your coils as much as you can and pull Vadico up out of them to pull them right out of their lower armor and pants.
No. 1008378 ID: 9b127b
File 162943736553.png - (625.50KB , 657x858 , Pentacle176.png )

Azzeki leverages her position tightening her coils around her captive prismatican and pulling him from his lower armor.

Vadico's sudden exposure has left him Shaken!

"Fearr my powerr!" Azzeki boasts.

A Vardek will be acting next, brace for attack!
No. 1008379 ID: 0fae41

Prepare for Via to... lift a finger?
No. 1008380 ID: 629f2e


I've been guessing she'd do something for a while, but now with Jaki on the floor, Vadico Shaken, and Gukri enslaved, this actually seems likely. Prepare for the spells.
No. 1008402 ID: 10c07d

Kalez, be ready to avoid a spell from Via Vardeck
No. 1008641 ID: 9b127b
File 162977553241.png - (584.15KB , 657x858 , Pentacle177.png )

Kalez keeps her focus on Via Vardek, waiting for her her move or some inkling on how she plans to win this fight, she sees none.

Sezeda laughs "My cousssin here'sss a grappling pro! sshe'ss gonna break you in half!"

Vadico opens his mouth as if to retort but instead of words a spray of hot flame lights the room and the cocky serpent

"Yeouch! keep him back Zeki!" Sezeda cries as she deflects most of the flame.

"I'm trying Sez!" Azzeki responds in a snarl "but he's getting a little too hot to handle!"

Kalez: Done
Sezeda: Ready!
Azzeki: Done
Lylene: Ready!

Select a single character to act!

No. 1008642 ID: 629f2e


Return fire Sezeda! Finish Vadico off with a vertical slice down his attire.
No. 1008644 ID: 10c07d

Lylene, slash the rest of Vadico’s clothes to ribbons with your swords and taunt your power as Kalez’s chosen champion
No. 1008653 ID: c92a02

Sezeda, strike Vadico down while he's grappled and shaken.
No. 1008677 ID: 322af8

Lylene isn't defending at the moment. She should be the one to strike Vadico with intent to remove what remaining cover he has.
No. 1008679 ID: 629f2e


Good point.
No. 1008749 ID: 3aa06e

Prove your worth Lylene and make a slash at Vadico to remove his remaining clothing.
No. 1010813 ID: 9b127b
File 163185101905.png - (483.80KB , 657x858 , Pentacle178.png )

Lylene takes advantage of the situations, she moves up and delivers a quick slice against the grappled target

A Vardek will be acting next, it's Sir Gukri's turn to act.
Sir Gukri is SLAVED to Kalez, what does he do?

No. 1010814 ID: c92a02

Gukri, smash Via!
No. 1010815 ID: 10c07d

Jump the grounded Jaki and start tearing at their clothes
No. 1010816 ID: 629f2e


Gukri should attack Via. We'll either make her waste spells defending against her own minion, or force her grandsons to try and defend her. It's a good way to inflict pressure on them all.
No. 1010828 ID: d052fd

Via basically skipped the whole last round, but also wasn't targeted by any attacks. Based on her role as a diviner, it's possible she's purely reactionary in combat. If that's the case, we might as well keep focusing on her minions and keep the number of active combatants on the opposing side as favorable as possible until everyone on the team is ready to face her alone.

Besides, focusing on all enemies at once isn't really optimal. Focus on weakened enemies now to prevent them from being able to contribute to the fight later. Gukri should give Vadico the smackies.
No. 1010848 ID: 322af8

I'd argue that Gukri should try to do damage to Via's clothes. He's flanking her and she didn't seem to foresee his domination. Worse to worse he loses some armor of his own.
No. 1011192 ID: 0eed73

If anything, it'll be worthwhile to see what defenses, if any, Via has squirreled away.
No. 1012576 ID: 9b127b
File 163363823978.png - (443.69KB , 657x858 , Pentacle179.png )

Gukri my slave, attack Via Vardek

Sir's Gukri action's slow and his limbs shudder in resistance

'SLAVE! do your master's bidding!'/i]Kalez Bellows channeling pain into the slave spell

Vardek gives a mirthless glare[i]'A tool of the Multeros will never be a master

Kalez holds her calm and focuses on her own power'I may be a tool of the Multeros, but I'll never be a tool for you, never again.'

the ancient diviner snarls back'You side with a dying house, Vardek *Cough* will reign supreme!'

Sir Gukri's will finally gives in and he strikes Lady Vardek.
Gukri's flag point doesn't land however as it reaches the point where it would hit Via Vardek the light merely shatters around it.
No. 1012577 ID: 9b127b
File 163363834632.png - (621.40KB , 657x858 , Pentacle180.png )

the Illusionary world shatters revealing a cold stone room
Via Vardek is gone, were she ever here.
The Hydra fills an area the moments ago appeared as a crimson wall.

Cackling is heard and Kalez's attention is drawn to Vadico 'You have many eyes duchess yet lack sight' he continues laughing 'your prize was here the entire time'
No. 1012579 ID: 629f2e

I don't care for Vadico's tone. Finish those two off, and send them on their way. If they're through fighting, hit Vadico at least once for good measure. The whelp needs to learn some respect.

Reunite with your Hydra, and go over that entire meeting in your head to make sure there wasn't anything bad for them to hear.
No. 1012580 ID: 96c896

Fuss over your Hydra's new limbs.
No. 1012582 ID: ef27ee

Kalez, cast water slash to slice off Vadicos underwear and make it a point to painfully slash anything underneath his undergarments as punishment for laughing at you.
As for the other Vardek cast a grasping field on them to begin tearing off their armor and clothing. Finally, order all your serpents to jump Jaki and do the same, not giving them a chance to retaliate.
No. 1012584 ID: 96c896

I think we should let the Hydra decide what to do with Vardek's goons.
No. 1012586 ID: c92a02

Well the other undead dummies are still here. Send Gukri away before your charms wear off. Attempt to assess the Hydra's condition without getting in arm's reach.
No. 1012587 ID: 3aa06e

Ensure the Hydra isn't under some weird control spell. >>1012579 yes make sure to go over that. I don't think anything too badly was said but have something ready for when the Hydra asks why you weren't willing to trade the princess for them.

Assuming all is right, let the Hydra decide the fate of these cronies. It's technically their prison after all, that you assigned them to of course.
No. 1012592 ID: 322af8

Rip off Vadico's underwear as punishment for his sass. Then toss him and the other two in proper cells. Collect the hydra and we can call this part of the chapter closed.
No. 1013096 ID: 9b127b
File 163453172211.png - (332.15KB , 657x858 , Pentacle181.png )

The Golden scorpion is wary of further enchantments, however the Hydra's unique form allows it to recover from any spell inflicted on it in minutes, making them a most potent weapon.
Kalez is certain that any magic even Vardek would have cast on them would be long gone

. . . and yet she thinks, there is something wrong.
It is not like the Hydra to ignore a fight.
'Hydra' Kalez addresses, but the creature doesn't respond and after a moment she continues 'how should I punishes Vardek minions for thier defiance'
I don't care a head says "Mifal" Kalez believes her name is, she responds 'and what do your sisters think?'
the others don't respond aside from a deep grow from one and some sobbing from another, after another moment of silence Mifal speaks again 'They don't care either.'
everything is wrong about the Hydra's attitude, they never pass up a chance at torture and even less allow one head to speak for the others.
No. 1013097 ID: 9b127b
File 163453186480.png - (563.31KB , 657x858 , Pentacle182.png )

there's more laughter from Vadico 'ehheheheh! you should have bargained. now you'll feel the wrath of house Vardek.'
'You'll feel my wrath first!' Kalez uses [WATER SASH] on Vadico.
The attack seems to shut the arrogant pest down, Kalez now considers how to approach the Hydra's unusual behavior.
No. 1013098 ID: 629f2e

Have Lylene and Sezeda take the dragons to another room (Keep Azzeki, best not to be completely alone in here). Dig deep and try to show the Hydra some warmth to coax their troubles to the surface.
No. 1013099 ID: c92a02

Tell them that you are satisfied to see they are alive. If you can muster up a better affirmation, so much the better.
She seems upset. Summon your King's hand to give powerful headpats.
No. 1013101 ID: 10c07d

This, also reward and praise Lylene for being such a good combatant and also assign someone to keep the other Vardek down
No. 1013107 ID: 50af53

They seem to be horribly upset and are taking a somber stance. Perhaps they may have somehow lost a head? Eloquently request they face you for inspection. I don't like the thought of getting closer to her should something be wrong, that and approaching an underling is beneath you.
No. 1013116 ID: 3aa06e

Keep your entourage around you until you can reveal what's wrong. Ask the hydras to face you, what did the damned Vardeks do to them? Maybe reveal some genuine concern.
No. 1013163 ID: e51896

No. 1014001 ID: 9b127b
File 163574173366.png - (473.83KB , 657x858 , Pentacle183.png )

Kalez looks back and waves a hand'Lylene, Sezeda. Lock the Vardeks in an empty cell'.

The two slither off catives in tow, Kalez then returns her attention to the Hydra "Hydra I am satisfied to see you are alive" she tries to inflect warmth in her voice, but it sounds more sardonic than genuine.

The heads of the Hydra snort and growl, unmoved by the words of sympathy 'Only because you still need us.' Mifal again speaking for the others

Kalez recognizes Lady Vardeks words as they are parroted by the witless dupe, Kalez shifts the conversation back "your poor arm and tail, are they healing well?" this time attempting a concerned tone.

The Hydra just huffs and shifts their weight, this Kalez knows is good, they are confused meaning there is at least some doubt in whatever Vardek told them.

Kalez ventures a request'Could you please turn around? I would prefer to speak to you face to faces'

The levity in the statement is not well received, in a swift movement the Hydra is facing the golden scorpion and looming over her 'YOU THINK THAT'S FUNNY?!' Fason bellows speaking for the first time
'You killed our friend!' Solia wails.
'She was kind to us, showed us far off places!' Laret hisses
Diavolo Channler. Kalez curses to herself, Vardek must have known revealing her fate would disturb the Hydra

Fason then adds 'Also our arm is better than ever' The Hydra flexes their improved talon

The Hydra seems ready to attack but there is some hesitation and is waiting for Kalez next move.

A) Kalez tries to calm her with words
B) Kalez attempts a spell
C) Kalez attacks
D) Kalez defends
E) Kalez flees
F) something else?

No. 1014002 ID: c92a02

Defend, and since you leave us no further context make some lies up about how you had to kill her for the Hydra's own good, or perhaps how you regret the killing was necessary.
Did you save them because they were needed? No, you saved them because the opposite was true, no one believed they could be saved. The world turned their backs on them. You believed there was still a chance for them. There still is.
No. 1014003 ID: 629f2e

Okay, we'd really like to keep the Hydra, but they're in a terrible mood.

I say that we take a gamble. Don't do anything. Take whatever attack comes, and try to talk to her afterwards. It won't feel great, but it may surprise them enough to hear you out. Whether you lie or tell them the truth, say whatever you think will make them stop.

If you really doubt your ability to succeed that high charisma check though, focus on incapacitation. Cast Trap Maker + Lock Down on her main garment so that you can stop her if she tries to rush you down.
No. 1014004 ID: 35458d

The animal needs to be tamed and know who's its master.

Attack, and demand that it learns its place!
No. 1014005 ID: 094652

"She wanted to see more. I wanted a diviner who wouldn't stab me in the back. It failed, and when she started ranting about how she was going to raze the kingdom and eat her friends piece by piece, I faced her down and stabbed her in the front. Multiple times.
And I will need you if I want to capture the madwoman alive, so Stand. Down."
No. 1014006 ID: e1017c

"Think, Hydra! If I need you as a loyal soldier, need you enough to save you from death, then I must want to do everything to keep you loyal, correct? Therefore I would not have done anything to make you question your loyalty if there was any other way. Trust not in my empathy and heart, Hydra, trust in my logic and planning, and trust in your greatness as an irreplaceable interrogator and warrior. I need you now more than ever. Together, we shall do great things and thwart everyone who would spell our doom, through pain and through chain!"
No. 1014008 ID: 62e901

Of course. Of course the somebody who saw the future would be good to the hydra if it would cause this to occur. That was clever of Diavolo. Has she left other surprises? Well, either way...
Appeal to your history with her? Throw shade at Vardek's motives?

"I get that you're mad, I'd be just as mad if somebody tried to hurt you. It's why I fought them, why I came here! If I 'just needed you' as Vardek put it, I could have just ordered some troops to retrieve you, but I had to see if you were alright myself!
I cared for you, made sure you were fed, protected you, gave you a life! Vardek, though, she just sees you as a way to hurt me!

I'd be a fool to ask you to forgive me for what I did to Diavolo. What I will ask, is that if you will still try to kill me after all I did for you, because *Vardek* desires it, (remove your hood) at least look me in the eyes and say it."

Also, ready a floor slip if this fails. Bigger they are, harder they fall.
No. 1014009 ID: dc5d5b

This, and to add further to that. “What has Vardek really done for you other than show you these illusions and grandeur? It’s easy to be kind and to paint the outside world beautifully. But here’s something Vardek never did, make the hard decisions and put time into you.

You all know I’m the one who saved you from death. I got my best mage to save your lives even if he didn’t want to, even though Abin said he could only save a few of you I made sure he saved you all. I got my best to make sure all of you would come out alive.

Who trained you to fight? It was Midas, who taught you all to defend yourselves. So that you wouldn’t be defenseless against those who would harm you. Who taught you five to read and write, to have an education? It was Abin.

And this prison, it’s not the best looking compared to outside but it was the safest place for you all. I could have assigned you to some distant outpost. Someplace far from me, but I chose here because I wanted you five to be safe. Outside the castle, you will find Zealots who will hunt you down for the mere crime of existing. You might be able to take a few but given time, they will send greater numbers and more powerful members to hunt you down. While you sleep and while you wake. To them, the simple fact that you draw breath is enough for them to focus attention on vanquishing you.

Vardek wasn’t the one who saved your lives, she wasn’t the one who taught you all you know, she isn’t the one who provided you shelter and your essentials. She didn’t put the time and effort into you, she didn’t make the hard decisions. I did. Even if you despise me for it, keeping you in this prison was the safest thing to do for you because me and others care.” And I suppose as you remove your hood make one final statement. “To strike at me, you strike at everyone who really cares. You walk away from the people who have given all that you have. People who have made sacrifices Vardek never has.”
No. 1014043 ID: 322af8

I'd argue retreat. What else is the hydra going to do stay in the cage forever? Let them be mad for a bit and then when their anger passes they will come to you again.
No. 1014128 ID: 12f554

This has some wisdom behind it.

There are two possibilities that lead to Kalez keeping the Hydra. Either beat it into submission (risky, liable to cause reprisals later), or convince it to come willingly. Everybody's coming up with some elaborate lie to get the Hydra on our side, but the Hydra heard Kalez admit, without remorse, that she killed their friend. And the Hydra isn't *stupid*.

So let her get a solid hit in. It'll let her work out some of her anger, and it'll make Kalez look less haughty, and that'll provide much better odds of the Hydra actually listening to Kalez.
No. 1014789 ID: 9b127b
File 163661659721.png - (488.62KB , 657x858 , Pentacle184.png )

Kalez is truly tempted to force the Hydra into submission, but her hand is stayed by an immutable fact; She'd lose

The Hydra is powerful, more powerful than any in the castle realize, save perhaps Midas. The Hydra is powerful enough to ruin everything, powerful enough to ruin her . . . dream.

That's what this is all about.
Melancholy seeps into Kalez' armored shell as hot water on a meal crab.
Dreams of a better tomorrow.
The pain of memory boils under her chitin.

Azzeki notices her pain and seems tempted to comfort the scorpions' distress.

The Hydra remains oblivious.

Kalez motions for Azzeki to hold her position. she then lowers her hood.
the pain on her face is real, as is the sorrow in her words 'I too cared for Diavola . . . in my way'

The hydra is effect by the rare emotion of their jailer but clings to anger,'Liar! you killed her!' Fason voices.
Kalez' sigh comes out ragged'Yes I did, I hated what she had become but I hated myself more for twisting her in into the monster she became'

'Just like how you've twisted us!' Mifal huffs, trying to act strong.

'Yes just as I had Aebin twist all of you' Kalez admits 'I thought ending the monster would ease my guilt but it only weighed heavier on me'

Kalez pauses and a voice of understanding speaks from the head of Solia'and then what?'

The golden scorpion loathes sympathy and snaps back 'then the pain endured. Until today.' a fierceness returns to Kalez 'I no longer think Vardek was lying when she said Diavola lives, this being true places everyone in the kingdom in grave danger, even you she'll not see you as friend anymore.'
Kalez Reaches for the last of her fading passion 'I may not care for you in the way you like, but I AM keeping you safe, all of us in the castle are.' Kalez holds her arms wide a strike against me would be a strike on all of them. we need each other working together now more then ever to survive.

A moment of silence is followed by hushed whispers from the heads. the heads seem wary and Mifal speaks 'we will return to the upper level, for now.'
No. 1014841 ID: 322af8

Good. Then with that crises averted, we all shall return to the normal level and get back to the important business of stamping out the rebels.
No. 1016226 ID: 3aa06e

Not quite out of this mess yet but at least one of your best isn't being used against you. They might even make a great personal guard if you can regain their trust. Get to work on ideas.

Get everyone together and make sure the Vardeks are locked up. Once this prison is back under control, get back to planning.
No. 1016244 ID: c0a638

I don't think she's ready for a hug so... Offer a hand to shake.
No. 1017495 ID: 9b127b
File 163961053726.png - (516.20KB , 657x858 , Pentacle185.png )

Seeing the danger has passed Sezeda and Lylene emerge from hiding
'Sssooo . . . what now?' Lylene asks.

'Now we leave this wretched place' Kalez hisses

and so the scorpion and her serpents make their exit.
No. 1017496 ID: 9b127b
File 163961062175.png - (408.12KB , 657x858 , Pentacle186.png )

Again Eeyfel walks across the castle courtyard, she is not alone this time.

Abin Nethar is with her, he is poor company with his harsh chiding demeanor but Eeyfel has been glad of his company.

The night has been dark, darker than it has seemed in many seasons. She chooses to comment on the unusual silence that greets them 'I don't hear Ulric's mumbling or scrapping, shouldn't he be working tonight?

Her jackal companion having been deep in thought responds with his usual snippy dismissal 'The useless wretch is probably off drinking somewhere' upon reaching the center fountain he turns to the small kobold.'I'm going to find Kalez she'll want to know what we've learned, You take these parchments to Midas immediately and inform him as well Nethar then activates the rune for the passage.

Eeyfel looks down the tree lined road leading towards the keep with a deep sense of dread.

The tunnel's grinding movement halt when fully open 'Oh and if you do see Ulric, tell the lazy lout that these trees need trimming' Nethar adds as he descends the stairs.

as her sole companion departs she only feels the dread deepen
No. 1017497 ID: 629f2e

Alright, let's ask the obvious question. What shady thing is Nethar about to do now that he's by himself? Something he doesn't want Kalez to know about, something for Kalez that others shouldn't know about, or just something normal that appears shady because it's happening at night?
No. 1017499 ID: c92a02

Keep an ear out for intruders. There's always someone in this castle that wants to jump you.
No. 1017530 ID: 3aa06e

Status check, how is your hand? Did you get Abin to look at that or are you planning to keep it a secret till it gets worse?
No. 1018152 ID: 9b127b
File 164024076209.png - (463.21KB , 657x858 , Pentacle187.png )

Fear dominates Eeyfel's every thought. not just from the darkness but from the treasonous parchments littering the streets. the very parchments she hold in her hands.

Abin Nethar wasn't afraid, as if imminent destruction was more of an inconvenience than a real concern.

Or maybe he already knew.

Eeyfel's boots clack again the paving stones, betraying her position to the ominous shadows. Again the kobold wishes her senior acolyte had not abandoned her to the night.

Abin must have already known, he knew we were all doomed. Eeyfel considers that perhaps her colleague welcomes death at least on some level, perhaps he intends to set his affairs in order and let the darkness come.

Eeyfel hear's a groan coming from a nearby tree

The acolyte freezes and decides that unlike Abin she very much would like to live.
No. 1018154 ID: c92a02

Put the papers down and investigate this winded tree. Dark arts at the ready!
No. 1018163 ID: 10c07d

You have spells that could possibly light up the area around the tree right? Why not use one of those?
No. 1018164 ID: 9a2966

A groan could be Ulric, drunk as a skunk.

So, false alarm! Probably. Though you were ordered to tell him to trim the trees... but, on the other hand, you've not seen him, and you were told to deliver the documents to Midas immediately.

See if you can peek whether it's Ulric or not from the path. If it is, yell at him Abin told him to trim the trees. If it isn't or you can't SEE him... maybe just calmly walk onwards, holding carefully on to these precious documents.
No. 1018189 ID: 322af8

I vote clutch the papers close to you and run away. There is trouble afoot and you want no part of it.
No. 1018210 ID: 3aa06e

Have an escape plan in mind but stand your ground.

>>1018164 Yeah it could be Ulric, or it may not be. Just pass the message along as casually as possible to see if you get a response. Don't wait for it either. Get to walking or running, you have papers to deliver.

What exactly did you and Abin uncover?
No. 1018613 ID: 9b127b
File 164073087436.png - (316.21KB , 657x858 , Pentacle188.png )

Eeyfel is a power-thief acolyte and has the following spells
Sap health (steals life force and gives it to you)
Scry (allows you to see and speak to people in far off places)
Find treasure (detects nearby valuables)
shadow form (improves stealth)
acid dagger (launch a short range acid attack)

Eeyfel clutches on tight to the parchments, she and Abin had found them scattered across Chorum street. they are treasonous poetry with impossible insight. it had taken the two of them hours to collect one of each verse.

The groan is heard again

Suspecting it might be Ulric, Eeyfel peaks around the tree, and confirms a pair of boots that belong to the grounds keeper.
No. 1018614 ID: d2bcfe

"Hey! No sleeping on the job!"
No. 1018615 ID: c92a02

Isn't he supposed to be operating the lift that Eeyfel totally doesn't know about? Bother. Use Scry to warn the castle guard that someone has whacked Ulric. Then use Shadow Form to drag Ulric to safety, if you can.
Dump the verses in the flowerpot, you are on castle grounds in the dark and nobody is going to scatter them again.
No. 1018618 ID: 629f2e

You can already make out the faintest traces of blood, you don't want to join him in whatever was just done, so stay stealthy.

Cast Find Treasure to see if you can detect any close to the prone Ulric. It may seem random, but the simplest motives for someone attacking him would be that either they wanted his valuables, or they were trying to leave with stolen goods and were seen by him.

If you detect anything valuable being carried close to the body, then the suspect is right there and you can't help him. Use Shadow Form to get a look at the suspect without being seen yourself hopefully, and then go report what you've seen. If nothing is detected, you may be safe to simply peek out and see whether or not he's well before rushing to get help.
No. 1018633 ID: 322af8

Should probably scry for help. After all his assailant is probably nearby and we don't want to join him bleeding on the floor.
No. 1019385 ID: 9b127b
File 164126591727.png - (342.71KB , 657x858 , Pentacle189.png )

Eeyfel feels that she should use her SCRY spell to get help, however she can only use it once without her crystal orb.

in addition she cannot cast any spells unless she puts down the parchments, which she is reluctant to do.

she's also not sure who to contact
A) Bowin should be at the stables feeding the molebeasts
B) Sergeant Geurrel should heading up the wall patrols in the area
though neither are formidable
C) Lady Eshekath serves as Master of Mercenaries,
D) and Captain Mazella leads the town nightwatch, either would could bring a sizable force but they might not listen to her.
E) perhaps she could contact someone else
F) or maybe it's best she just keeps moving.

No. 1019386 ID: c92a02

Eshekath. The wall patrols might be down for the count too. Contact a central source.
No. 1019450 ID: f1b416

Call Bowin for back up I trust him more to provid actual assistance
No. 1019453 ID: 9ace5e

Captain Eshekath
No. 1019528 ID: 322af8

Put down the papers. Step on them so that they don't blow away. Call for Sergeant Geurrel as they should be able to assist and they will listen to you.
No. 1019967 ID: 3aa06e

Contact Bowin, better to get someone who listens and can be counted on to provide back up.
No. 1020057 ID: 629f2e

Lady Eshekath seems like a decent pick. Also, it was a tie between her and Bowin, so here's a nice tie-break vote.
No. 1020278 ID: 9b127b
File 164197447549.png - (340.42KB , 657x858 , Pentacle190.png )

Lady Eshekath, Eeyfel decides. The Master of mercenaries had an army of mighty serpents at her disposal, and Eeyfel had worked with them before.

She carefully put down the parchments and quietly whispered the incantations.

a window to another place opened in the air and Eshekath came into view.
The serpent started at the sudden intrusion then relaxed 'Oh! an Acolyte I wass indeed looking for one of your lot.'

This surprise Eeyfel 'you are?' she responded a little confused.

'Yessss, my daughter Lylene has missssed her shift again. have you seen her? I hope she isn't harassing the Duchess's sservents again'

Eeyfel can't recall any unusual serpent activity.
No. 1020286 ID: 10c07d

Tell you that you are not really aware of any serpent business and that she should contact Kalez, as she seems to really like the snakes. Then tell Eshekath that you have an unusual situation of your own, the groundskeeper seems to be injured and you need some backup. Ask for her to send over a serpent ASAP.
No. 1020341 ID: 629f2e

You don't know anything about her serpents, but that isn't what matters. You need backup, and fast. You believe the groundskeeper is injured and that his assailant may still be in the area, leaving you unsafe.
No. 1020369 ID: 55e0d4

Her lateness may have something to do with this dead body you found in the garden!
No. 1020409 ID: 3aa06e

Say you haven't seen Lylene and you hope she hasn't slithered into any trouble like what you just found. Report that you need help. The groundskeeper is incapacitated and you're alone out here, his attacker may still be lurking around. Ask to have a pair of serpents sent to your location for assistance.
No. 1020727 ID: 9b127b
File 164261906965.png - (292.26KB , 657x858 , Pentacle191.png )

Eeyfel trying to control the panic in her voice but isn't certain that she succeeds'I don't know where she is. the groundskeeper's been attack maybe she's been attacked too! I need soldiers here to secure the area.'

Eshekath narrows her eyes 'Where are you?'

'I'm in the outer courtyard on the main path' Eeyfel blurts out quickly

Eshekath ponders for a painful several seconds then responds'I'll sssend a team, they should-'
Just then a sound behind Eeyfel disturbs the kobold's concentration, and her spell comes to an end.

She hears parchment shuffling.
No. 1020730 ID: 2be83f

They’re after your heretical charms! Come out ready to blast ‘em.
No. 1020731 ID: 629f2e

It's the end of the day, you'll be at home resting soon if you make it out of this, let's blow through your spells.

Use Shadow Form and dive into the bushes. Then try to scope out the source of the noise and prepare to launch an Acid Dagger into them. It'll hopefully buy you enough time to run.
No. 1020747 ID: 10c07d

No. 1020796 ID: 6c227a

oh no they're after your poetry collection! That took hours to collect! protect it!
No. 1021227 ID: 9b127b
File 164308477148.png - (444.69KB , 657x858 , Pentacle192.png )

Eeyfel is torn between hiding and protecting the poetry, and as always fear wins her hand.
Eeyfel fears the wrath of her masters for failing in this task more then whatever monster is lurking in the shadows.

She readies a spell and turns to face her foe ... only to find a tiny figure standing before her. This is definitely not what she was expecting.

Eeyfel has no idea who or what it is. this unknown danger terrifies her even further.

what does she do?
No. 1021228 ID: c92a02

Is that a vegetable? Eat it, they're good for you.
No. 1021231 ID: 629f2e

She sees you, but hasn't attacked yet. Don't get cocky because she's small, magic exists dummy.

You don't know what to think of this person, but they aren't harming you yet at this time. You already called for help in dealing with the gardener who might be dead or unconscious, so basically your job is done. Remember what happened last time you took the initiative and tried to go beyond your station? Oh yeah, you got punished by Kalez for giving her the info she needed. Just prioritize your own safety now.

Ask the small lady for the paper back, and then just leave. Don't threaten her, don't question why she's here, just take your pages back and leeeeaaaaavvvee. If she doesn't hand them over, then fire an Acid Dagger, grab the papers, and run for your life.
No. 1021232 ID: b4bf25

I draw my laser gun and blind her.
No. 1021233 ID: b4bf25
File 164308817427.jpg - (771.26KB , 1920x2560 , IMG_20220108_090243.jpg )

And then I start to burn off her clothes
No. 1021235 ID: 96c896

It's someone you've never seen before, so obviously it's an intruder. Strike to disable, capture and interrogate.
No. 1021236 ID: 322af8

I'm going to have to vote for the "and I started blasting" route. You would know them if they belonged and right now they appear to be danger.
No. 1021255 ID: 10c07d

Eeyfel is an acolyte, you’d think she’d know whos who around the castle.
However, I think we should quickly look to see how Ulfric is fairing first. If Ulfric is actually injured then fire away.
No. 1021257 ID: 96c896

He's on the other side of the bushes.
No. 1021277 ID: 36a3f1

Strike before she can cry out. Acid dagger attack!
No. 1021293 ID: 3aa06e

If it wanted to hurt you they would have already, politely ask that the creature doesn't read the treasonous papers. See if this is someone we can negotiate with but be ready for any sort of attack from them.
No. 1021306 ID: 8edb27
File 164315296082.jpg - (825.01KB , 1920x2560 , IMG_20220122_091740.jpg )

No, blind them!
No. 1022999 ID: 9b127b
File 164448393776.png - (415.91KB , 657x858 , Pentacle193.png )

Eeyfel's terror solidifies into uncontrollable hatred.

She'll destroy what she doesn't understand!

Eeyfel casts ACID DAGGER
'Surrender or die vegetable!' she yells while launching the attack.
No. 1023000 ID: 9b127b
File 164448421062.png - (278.11KB , 657x858 , Pentacle194.png )

Acid sprays across the being eating into her clothes and body,
She cries out in pain.

Pain Eeyfel shares.
Vibrations from the vegetable's cry shudder through the kobold's entire body, making her head swim in this delirium forgotten memories surface.
Eeyfel DOES know what this thing is, Aebin taught it to her years ago as part of her training, he had TOLD HER they were extinct.

He spoke of a root called a Mandrake, and that their voices can kill.
No. 1023001 ID: 96c896

Zone of Silence!
No. 1023002 ID: 10c07d

While their still a little shaken lunge at the plant person and use one hand to cover their mouth and the other to rip off their undergarments. Assuming this is successful keep your hand on their mouth and hold them between you and that pair or tall red glowing eyes. Keeping your hand over their mouth and holding them human shield style
No. 1023004 ID: 629f2e

Grab her by the mouth and pin her down. Use sap health to drain her energy, and tone down her awful scream. It should also help you recover from whatever scream she can get out before you act.

If you really wanted to be safe, you could try biting through her neck. Can't scream withiut vocal cords
No. 1023006 ID: 07ed53

Try to maybe ball your cape up and shove it in her mouth. You don't know what she's up to but you also don't want to die from screams. Hurting her might not be the best idea as causing her pain seems to make her scream and thereby hurt you.
No. 1023007 ID: 07ed53

Also as she appears to be some sort of vampire, do not put any of your body parts in her mouth.
No. 1023008 ID: 10c07d

Hm yeah that might be the case, especially seeing how she has two very suspicious holes in her neck.
I’ll change my suggestion to shoving a glove in her mouth but keep the rest the same
No. 1023009 ID: 10c07d

If she is a vampire consuming vampiric vegetable might not be the best idea
No. 1023012 ID: fd4d13

Screams probably aren't directed and making her scream is probably going to result in Ulric being dead instead of injured, probably best not to try to kill her unless you at least lead her away first.

Do vegetables even have vocal chords?
No. 1023070 ID: 322af8

Aw crap. We destroyed the page it was holding. Be sure to be careful where we aim and fire a second blast. Try to knock it out with it.
No. 1023100 ID: c92a02

That's a good thing, really, the fewer of these heretical leaflets the better.
Go for the restraint and strip. Gag them!
An undead plant? What is this heresy? Could it be an escaped servant of the wretched things kept under the castle you don't know about? And that cups symbol on their knickers. This doesn't seem like someone in Kalez's employ... not officially at least.
No. 1025011 ID: 9b127b
File 164606699745.png - (369.68KB , 657x858 , Pentacle195.png )

Eeyfel has suffered two levels of WILL drain

Eeyfel whips off her glove and tries to ram it into the mouth of the mandrake
The kobold delivers her attack with the strength and speed of a particularly drowsy hamster the mandrake in turn blocks with surprising speed and strength . . . neither of which were necessary to turn away the feeble strike.

'My dress! My dress!' the Mandrake's shriek is high pitched and shrill, Eeyfel feels her mind cracking like a pain of glass 'do you have any idea how difficult it is to get dresses made in my size!'

Eeyfel suffers a level of WILL drain
Eeyfel suffers two levels of WILL drain
Eeyfel is SHAKEN

'no' Eeyfel responds without thinking
close to her target she grabs out with her other arm in frustration, her hand grips fabric and she pulls.

The heretical leaflet's squeaking voice is like nails on a chalk board 'EEAAH! NO! you can't humiliate me like this!'
Eeyfel has resisted

Eeyfel steels herself and responds through gritted teeth'I just did'
No. 1025012 ID: 9b127b
File 164606715358.png - (446.55KB , 657x858 , Pentacle196.png )

She then realizes she's torn off the creature's underpants, she feels a bit silly.
Eeyfel's blood then runs cold as she sees the symbol on the garment.
a chalice and two red rivers.
The Legion of thirst.
Queen Nerexi's undead army.

A vampire.

But that's impossible she thinks. There's no way a vampire could make it across the see without mortal help.
No. 1025013 ID: 8a51ec

What would be even less likely is that she's here alone, so if another one heard her screaming then you're about to get ambushed. Blind fire an Acid Dagger behind you juuuuust in case.
No. 1025016 ID: 629f2e

Great job Eeyfel! Even with your will drained, you dealt a humiliating blow to an enemy stronger than you're rated to fight against. You've gone above and beyond your station, and now it's time to GTFO.

You may not be aware that Ulric is standing right there behind you, but that honestly doesn't change anything. Here's what you need to know rn:

1: Your will has been drained heavily while in contact with this mandrake, and it's getting harder to act
2: Her underwear has the symbol of vampires.
3: She has fangs
4: If Ulric was defeated by a vampire, Ulric has probably been turned into a vampire

Forget the stupid papers, there is no shot the punishment they hit you with for losing them is worse than straight up being conscripted into some undead army.

Take your best guess as to which direction Lady Eshekath's backup will be coming from, based on who the nearest guards would probably be to the best of your knowledge, and bolt in that direction. I would have recommended casting Shadow Form to improve your escape into the darkness of the night, but if they choose to pursue you then you're already in a bad place.

Instead of that, prepare a casting of Sap Health the moment you hear footsteps chasing after you. The second they get near, try to counter their attack by draining their lifeforce. Probably not the intended use for the spell, but maybe you can try to drain their mental health to recover your own? It's worth a shot, you didn't take much physical damage in that encounter so the energy's gotta go somewhere. Maybe you won't end up SHAKEN afterwards.

You're the coolest kobold plz don't die or get turned into a vamp.
No. 1025028 ID: 10c07d

No. 1025077 ID: 8483cf

Pls no die, pls do consider possibility that there are more vampires RIGHT BEHIND YOU
No. 1025078 ID: c92a02

If the gardener already got got by a vampire, then he must be a thrall...
Okay, retreat time! Shadow your form and run for the hills! Abandon the papers!
No. 1025696 ID: 9b127b
File 164679560769.png - (357.46KB , 657x858 , Pentacle197.png )

Eeyfel hears breathing behind her

Resolve guides her heart
she has to make it to the inner gates.
Eeyfel makes a break for it but two steps is all she gets before a swift strike knocks her to the ground

Eeyfel is OUT of action and can no longer fight
The acolyte's head aches and her vision swims.
No. 1025697 ID: 9b127b
File 164679588048.png - (421.67KB , 657x858 , Pentacle198.png )

Eeyfel tries to get up, but her body fails her.
she hears the clip clop of clay boots against stone

A familiar squeaking voice can be heard. 'how dare you lay hands on me!? Torique the charming!'

A jovial voice responds 'I dunno Tori, maybe she found you a little too "charming" and wanted a sight more' Eeyfel recognizes the man as Ulric

The mandrake shrieks in outrage 'UGH! I want to be adorable and cute! not perved over by trash vermin! I knew we should have gone with the red outfit . . .'

'No siree, you'd look terrible in red. I stand by that.' Ulric responds with certainty.

The squeaking voice seems read to argue then backs 'Humph! well I bet devouring this pest will make me feel better.'

Eeyfel can see movement in the towers and someone with a torch rushing across the rampart.
Help is coming
She just needs to hold out just a few more minutes.

Eeyfel needs to keep her enemies distracted some how.
No. 1025698 ID: c92a02

Play up the scared little kobold angle, oooh you're just level two you don't give much XP, oh why did you ever go out alone today.
No. 1025715 ID: 10c07d

Show them your wounded arm where you were grabbed by undead that one time. Explain how they won’t want your blood because it is infected with rust and rot, drinking it will surely have adverse effects on them.
No. 1025721 ID: 629f2e

Alright Eeyfel, this is your one shot, you have to give this your all. If you fail, you're dead, the end. Or worse, you're dead, but you have to keep going as a vampire's thrall.

Begging for your life won't get you far, and you don't have any fight left in you to actually keep them away, so you're going to have to try and Bargain with them. The only thing that'll stop them from killing you is if they have something to gain from it, so you need to convince them that that something exists right now.

Now if you just start talking BS, then you're going to get identified as a liar and immediately killed, so try to find something with at least a hint of TRUTH you can bring up. And try not to seem as terrified as you actually are, fear will make you seem insincere.

"I've been forced to help ungrateful important people all day. I know what they're doing, where they are, and where they're going to be. Spare me, and I'll tell you whatever you need to know. I even know what happened at the prison."

Eeyfel probably doesn't know exactly what happened at the prison beyond "They're escaping", but if these guys had ANY involvement then showing we know that may validate that we are in the know. And if they don't know, then it may get their interest.

If that doesn't do it, throw out as many other hot tidbits as you can think of, and try to make one stick. If you don't say the right words, you're going to die, so try to get as many out as you can before you meet your end. Hopefully the right ones are among them, and you manage to live another day.
No. 1025752 ID: 764aca

Maybe give them a slow sexy strip show as a distraction?
No. 1025782 ID: 322af8

Slowly crawl away towards the light. Make sure to both inform them that their doom is coming and they should leave while also losing a few lose articles of clothing. Everyone knows that a damsel in distress gets farther when they strip down a little.
No. 1026519 ID: 9b127b
File 164756640055.png - (274.42KB , 657x858 , Pentacle199.png )

'Ahhh ah! you don't want to eat me!' Eeyfel cries as she tries to crawl away 'my blood is tainted, I was attacked I-' She feels a heavy boot press against her back pinning the small kobold to the ground. Ulric could crush her with his weight alone, but merely applies enough pressure to prevent further movement.

The click clack of the smaller clay boots continues until the Mandrake comes into view 'I know about your curse. I feel it in the air, why do you think I revealed myself? Eeyfel has no idea how to answer that.

*Snrk*the large wolf is heard suppressing a laugh from above her. 'you did a lot more revealing then I suggested'

'Shut up Ulric! you know what I meant.' The vampiric plant snaps back 'Anyways I was going to help you tiny rodent. Help you find your place as a creature of darkness.' the Mandrake removes a hand from one of her clay gloves.

Eeyfel gasps anything that might buy her a precious few more moments'I can help you . . . I know things, the prison escape, everyone's plans I can-'

the predator however has no patience for the mewling of prey.'-But then you had to ruin my night. so instead I think I'm just gonna suck you dry.'

The mandrake hand latches on to Eeyfel's exposed arm
'oh and by all means keep pleading. it's real funny that you think I care about anything happening in this shit hole! sadistic glee spreads across the parasite's face as she drains the acolyte's vital essence.
No. 1026520 ID: e51896

scream for help. hopefully someone will save you
No. 1026522 ID: c92a02

You know how to do this with magic, don't you? You can turn it against her.
No. 1026523 ID: df76b1

Panic, and accidentally cast the first spell that comes to mind.
No. 1026525 ID: 629f2e

You bought some time, but not a lot. She's latched on, it's too late to buy any more. So instead, you should speed up the time between now and help arriving. Being direct would be the best way to go.

Scream for help, and don't hesitate to shout the names of your assailants as a big Fuck You to them if you don't end up making it. They might cover your mouth before you get the chance if they care about that though.

If you have any energy left you can use to move your body, point towards where you saw the moving torch. The only thing that might make Torique let you go is if she thinks reinforcements are coming. Or maybe she'll relish the chance to convert or eat more guards. It at least gives you a chance if they don't think you're worth it.

Sorry, but you don't have many cards left to play, so you better not hesitate to lay them all out if they'll give you even a fraction of a chance to survive this encounter. Try to hold out as long as possible, and don't give in. If you can stay alive for a second longer, that could be the very second help arrives, and Torique lets you go. And if it isn't...

Well, that's one second less she has to accomplish whatever her goals are here that you're taking from her. Don't go down easy, fight her drain 'til your very last breath.

Which hopefully won't be right here right now, because that would be very sad and would make me feel deep sadness.
No. 1026526 ID: 2aa5f0

panic ask why her vagina on her hand. Buy yourself some time by confusing her and maybe getting her partner to laugh at her some more distracting her further.
No. 1026544 ID: 96c896

Make it weird. Imply sex things.
No. 1026551 ID: 10c07d

Cast sap health on Ulric and kick vegetable right in the clam! Try to use the element of surprise to scramble away or buy some more time.
No. 1026578 ID: ab8442

Being killed or becoming a thrall to a carrot is the worst out of the 2 to be done in by, maybe try and buy SOME time by pleading to Ulric that you will be his thrall if he half kills you into being a vampire, with him hopefully intervening Torique feeding on you to stop you from dying for now and try and do some weird Twilight vampire romance talk to kill some time before he rips out flesh from your neck and hope backup does arrive before that happens.
No. 1028456 ID: 9b127b
File 164931594962.png - (266.13KB , 657x858 , Pentacle200.png )

Eeyfel tries to scream but her voice feels weak, her whole body feels exhausted, She hears the Mandrake giggle with sadistic glee as her blood is drained from her.

The kobold is just about to drift off into oblivion when a pained cry startles her awake, she then hears a thud as Ulric heavily topples onto the ground.

The mandrake releases her and departs with a clatter of steps.
'you idiot Dwyte! you shot the gardener, get the little one!' a new voice shouts in the distance.
Eeyfel hears arrows zip over head an end their flight in the bushes

two serpents tower over her prone form, she extends her arms still clutching the pilfered cloth.
a serpent seemingly not noticing comment'Niole I think the little vermin esscaped into thosse sshrubss, should we perssue?'
Eeyfel uses all that remains of her strength to let out a desperate whine.
the second serpent; Niole looks down his eyes grow wide and he grips the cloth I wouldn't Dwite look at thiss! the first serpent; Dwite looks down and gapes i-it'ss gotta be a prank right?

Eeyfel's world goes dark her weakness finally winning out as she hears 'I ssure hope sso, we aren't getting paid enough to fight an army of the undead!'

Chapter 4 End
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