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Zeitgeist Blue

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Freedom City PBP: A How-To Guide

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  1. Alright! And with my last post, that pretty much ends the Serpent threads after a good part of the year. Think we rode through the pandemic here. Thanks for playing @Spacefurry and @Kaede Kimura!
  2. GM Alaynah nods at Blackstaff's answer and steps to the side to let him pass. She looks at The Dreamer warily, lips pressed thinly together. Though she seems like she's about to say something, after a moment she shakes her head. There aren't anymore words left to say. In a few minutes the Red Summer is cutting through the river, the evening lights of the city reflecting off its camo-green painted hull. It progressively gets smaller as it leaves the Emerald Cities behind, and soon it is swallowed up by the horizon and the darkness in the open sea beyond. Blackstaff accompanies them on their first portal jump off the coasts of Hawaii, a few clicks away from the city of Honolulu. Then after riding off in the waves, the Red Summer makes its next jump, and another one after that. A few hours later, Blackstaff is dropped off on the fourth, somewhere near the Port of Santos in Brazil, assured that he could easily teleport back to Emerald City. His part in helping Professor Advay escape the search of the Clans finished, Blackstaff watches as the Red Summer leaves him too, ready to teleport to its final destination somewhere in South America. The day after, The Dreamer is contacted again by the agents of the Forest Clan, nothing as time-intensive as their apartment visit and tour the first time. Vicente Cruz, the shapeshifter, calls The Dreamer's number and asks how her investigation went. He accepts her answer readily enough, not expecting anything more. He invites her over to a Forest Clan get-together for those within the city before ending the call. He seemed friendly enough, though that is not a surprise. After all, most people stay polite and friendly when speaking to others, never showing what lurks beneath the surface. Their true emotions, their deepest fears, their blinding hatred, their old sins. People, eh? What can you do?
  3. GM "I--" Advay says, momentarily taken aback. He inclines his head in acknowledgement. "Thank you for your trust. Though there is no need to apologize. Tonight has been full of deceptions. A necessity, pitiful, but it seems this is how the world works." Then he gives a rueful smile to Blackstaff. "Under more favorable conditions. Yes, that would be nice if I ever return at such a time, or if I'm ever in need of a investigator of magical means in my travels. Have you ever been in true wilderness? Fascinating." *** On the Red Summer, as if she had been holding her breath, Alaynah sighs at The Dreamer's decision. "Okay, good." Her voice says, crisp and business-like. She turns to her crew. "Mixnus, escort the doctor back to his cabin. Nixnus, warm the engines up. Zach, check over your charm again. We need it tight." The crew get to work quickly, descending down the hatch to the lower deck of the ship. One of the gargoyles steps over to the professor and waves him towards the hatch. Advay himself immediately shuffles over, pushing his spectacles up his nose. "Why I hope we won't have any more excitement tonight," he says with a chatter-like quality you know is fake. "Don't think my noggin could take anymore bandages." He laughs nervously. "Don't worry, professor" Alaynah replies. "We triple-checked our charms while you were talking, and found the weak link that let a combined River-Sea Clan spell walk through the backdoor. It'll be smooth sailing from here on out." Alaynah watches the professor descend down the hatch, and when it was only her and the two of you above deck, she finally spoke. "So this is it, huh? Don't take it you need any help getting out of this rock, Heir?" "Daye, you coming to the teleport point to watch us leave or are you staying with her?"
  4. GM Blackstaff states his decision and offers his services as a private investigator. Advay hums thoughtfully at all this, offering a small smile at the private investigator's consolations. "Thank you, Cristopher. I would rate your services quite highly if there was a way to do so. Perhaps twice now your cool head and abilities have kept me out of captivity, and for that I'd pay the Bennu thrice over if I could." He slips the jade stone around a finger, and slowly his tail retracts, seamlessly turning back into human legs. His scales fade into his dark skin and his pupils soften into orbs. Amid the transformation, Advay turns his eyes to The Dreamer, "I won't presume to know the entirety of your story, Heir, nor why you've found yourself employing Alaynah for her smuggling service same as I, but I can presume this. Now we both know what it is like to be alone among others. As odd as it may sound, there are many others like us out there and the Clans do provide a common area to meet them and know that there are others like us within easy distance. That way is barred from me now but perhaps it could help you, if you still wish to return to Emerald City." He pats the Dreamer's arm comfortingly, then takes out his specctacles to clean them. "And to your offer for residence, I do believe Alaynah already has a safehouse or two in mind. And while amenities would be nice, I'm no stranger to spartan living and worse." He flashes a smile as he returns his spectacles. He rises from his seat. "Jungles and mountaintops and swamps gives one perspective on modern comfort. I've had to endure all of that to find what became of the other preservation sites." He shrugs, a hint of sadness in his eye that quickly vanishes. "The locations of the preservation sites was kept secret from each other, but through our investigations Yatin and I have uncovered a fair few. Ruins, like ours. Some even have the locals attribute superstitions and monsters, imagined or otherwise, that come from things they do not understand. Far as we can tell, we are the only survivors from our time." There is a pause as the wind sighs for Advay. Then the professor nods with a finality and gestures to the Red Summer. "Should we then?" *** Alaynah and crew quickly stand to attention as your trio steps on the boat's deck. You see them warily gauging you. Understandable, but they know they could do nothing to stop any action either one of you chooses. At last, Alaynah smothers the end of her cigarette and steps forward, looking at The Dreamer then Blackstaff with her one good eye. "Okay, Heir. Suppose Daye's following your lead. What now?"
  5. Salvo: 0 posts + 3 GM posts = 6 post = 1PP GM: 3 posts = 6 GM posts (to Salvo) Fate of the Serpent (3)
  6. Okay. So make a Knowledge (Arcane Roll) the both of you to see if you know something. Staged DC to DC 25 where I just outright state the info. Though tbh, not sure if The Dreamer would know of it. Well, we'll see if she gets it.
  7. GM The professor sets his eyes on The Dreamer and does not react outwardly, seeming to consider her words carefully as she speaks. Then when she finishes, still he does not answer, thoughtfully resting his chin on the ridges of his knuckles. There is none of that bumbling, nervous academic behind his spectacles you realize. No, it is more cold, calculating. Almost serpent-like one could say, more than just the slit pupils that lock on to The Dreamer. The professor flicks them to Blackstaff, then back without a word, but then slowly, his lips spread into a smile. There is no warmth in the expression. "You ask, and so I will answer as I promised." He sighs then lays his hands, palms down, on the table. "What, exactly, do any of you truly know about the Lemurians? Whom those ignorant call Serpent People? I will tell you then, and listen for this lecture is crucial." He begins with the Serpent Empire, centered on the island continent of Lemuria, which was old even before modern humans had appeared. They were the masters of the world, the powers of both science and magic at their fingertips, but arrogant in their might, they allowed the seeds of a small threat grow into their greatest foe: the Empire of Atlantis. The two ancient empires hated each other as mortal foes would and only the destruction of the other could sate their hatred. It mattered not who initiated the war, but soon the whole world was aflame so intense and pervasive the conflict was. Armies marched across continents, navies sailed through the seas. Spells were cast that reshaped the landscape for centuries to come. In the end, Lemuria sank beneath the waves and, in time, so did Atlantis. In seeking the other's demise, they had only found mutual destruction. Most Lemurians and Atlanteans perished in their respective catastrophes, but some lucky few survived, left to wander Sub-Terra or the open seas, made to scavenge and degenerate into primitive tribes. The brightest minds who survived - renowned thinkers, explorers, scientists, and philosophers - were preserved in stasis, breathing but not truly alive. Once they had awakened, they were to usher the remnants of the Lemurians back into the height of empire. Or so that was the hope. In one of those preservation sites, one by one, through thousands of years, the relic-machines and the wards that kept them alive began to fail. Until there were only two left alive when they were awakened by some unknown trigger, who found their contemporaries, friends and family mere bones after many millenia in death. "We emerged from the jungles of West Bengal and made our way to Kolkota, learning and surviving in this new world where humans, a species we previously cared not one whit about, had dominated the world the my people's absence. Soon, we made our way to the United States, drawn towards the magical properties the city had been built over." Advay sits easily on his tail, as if he were recounting his last vacation rather than the story of his new life. "The forest clan contacted us, but they only knew us as Naga, never our true identities. Until now that is." The Lemurian's lips twitch in faint amusement as he stares at the night sky, empty of stars from the city lights. "As to what I intend to do, my dear. Why, that is simple. I will return when I am prepared and take what is rightfully mine from thieves and crooks. That is the way the world works when one hides in the shadows." His gaze returns back down to The Dreamer then to Blackstaff. "If I may query the both of you now. What is it that you intend to do? Each of you offered your help. Is it still extended?"
  8. Alright, updated conditions below. I'll get an IC out this weekend! *** 1HP, Blackstaff - Unharmed 1HP, The Dreamer - Bruised, Injured, Fatigued Alaynah - Bruised, Injured. Zach - Unharmed Mixnus - Unharmed Nixnus - Unharmed Advay - Bruised, Injured
  9. Roll Diplomacy @Spacefurry with a +2 from The Dreamer's Aid! We'll compare the result to the Diplomacy DC table in the M&M 2E book.
  10. Okay! Give me a Diplomacy check, @Spacefurry. We're using the Interaction table and Advay is... probably somewhere between Hostile (Interfere) and Unfriendly (Mislead) so I'll just take the average of the DCs. If you want to take an Aid action you can, @Kaede Kimura, but you'll need to add something to Blackstaff's offer for help (like a guarantee or reason why you'd take his side) to get him to open up.
  11. 2HP, Blackstaff - Unharmed 1HP, The Dreamer - Bruised, Injured, Fatigued Alaynah - Bruised, Injured. Zach - Unharmed Mixnus - Unharmed Nixnus - Unharmed Advay - Bruised, Injured
  12. GM "I..." The professor starts, then pauses as Blackstaff pats his arm. "Like you said, laying low does sound like the smart thing to do." Then he nods the The Dreamer's way. "In addition to general thankfulness, you have my gratitude for your understanding. Yes, delving deep into the unknown is an endeavour that could cost the ultimate price. It's a risk and a sacrifice, which I now had been witness to." He gives a deep sigh and runs his fingers through his hair. "Of course, I do hope to keep in touch when I need of your services once more. I've given Christopher here my bennu and no doubt it could be used as creature-bond to me. But that is far into the uncertain future," he shakes his head slowly. "I only wish to get through the night in one piece. And if I find the path to that happens to be sharing tea on an island in the middle of a river, then so be it." He exhales and nods, satisfied. And he looks to The Dreamer then Blackstaff, his eyebrows quirking up behind his spectacles. "But I still need to ask straight, could I leave or are there more queries I could help clarify?" Behind him, you can see the silhouettes of the Red Summer gently rocking with the lapping of the waves. On the deck are four figures scattered about. One lights up a cigarette, the orange glow incandescent among the shadows.
  13. So for Blackstaff, it was something that The Dreamer had said that made things click. Advay's story all fits. The magical research, the accidental death, the flight from his would-be captors for fear they would place the blame of Yatin's death on him and take away his life's work. The Dreamer had suggested that the professor give himself up to the Forest Clan. She had explained how understandable it is to have accidents when dealing with the unknown and volatile magic of the Lemurians. The Forest Clan would no doubt understand the accidental death and perhaps even the dangerous knowledge the professor dabbles with. And you have good reason to believe they would. They take in all kinds that would not fit in with human civilization, no doubt some within the Clans had shady pasts (or still do), yet still Advay believes they would be far harsher or opportunistic when it comes to him. Why? He continues to omit something that he know the Forest Clan would know, something that would justify his fear of the Forest Clan getting their hands on him. And the Forest Clan would know if they had taken all of his and Yatin's work. This goes beyond the death of his friend and his dabbling in dangerous magic. *** I also might be out for a week and a half. Almost time for my exam. But we'll see.
  14. Whew. That's a Nat 20. I'll probably add it into the OOC, while I do the IC.
  15. Don't forget to roll Bluff/Sense Motive vs. DC 10, Kaede!
  16. Salvo: 0 posts + 2 GM posts = 2 post = 1PP Tail of Gold (1) GM: 1 posts = 2 GM posts (to Salvo) Fate of the Serpent (1)
  17. Roll Bluff or Sense Motive again to sniff things out! vs. 1d20+10 = 26. Unfortunately, he is rolling really well. Maybe an Aid action would help? Have Adrianna and Cristopher build off one another!
  18. GM Advay savors the tea as he listens and when you are done, he looks up with a sigh. He at least seems to have composed himself. "Excuse me for a moment, I've been wearing my charm for a while now." On his left hand is a ring, a jade stone embedded into it. He plucks it off and pockets it, and immediately you see a shimmer begin from his waist. The shimmer continues down his body, and in its wake human legs merge into and clothing melts into skin before turning scaly. Soon, he sports no legs but a single tail like a stunted snake's, but the tail continues to grow. It lengthens, snaking past your table through the rocky surface of the island. The professor slides out of his chair, small scales now encompassing the sides of his face and arms as he turns his eyes between the both of you. His pupils are slits. His tail retracts and coils under him, longer than a man is tall, the professor has to lower himself so he could be at eyelevel. "Ah, much better," Advay, now very much looking like the naga he is, says with some relief. "Thank you for your understanding," he continues. "But I don't think the Forest Clan would embrace me with open arms no longer, misunderstanding or no. And it relates to your second question." He takes a moment to cough lightly behind a fist. "The Lemurians were an advanced civilization, beyond our world's science and magic, but perhaps it was in their hubris at that power and knowledge that led them into things we barely understand. I'm not sure they understood the forces they dealt with too, but no matter the case, they are what the young lady just called, ah, 'dangerous magics'." He pushes his glasses up, a strange gesture in a face not-quite human. "Take for instance, my friend's... demise. Or--or-- and I'm not quite sure here, but perhaps what had so degraded the Lemurians had begun to take root in Yatin's psyche." His face falls into an introspective mood. "Yes, that could explain the sudden violence all those days ago. And if him, then why not me? Or perhaps it too has?" He shakes his head slowly. "Dangerous magics, and much of our research must have been taken away by those who arrived in our laboratory after I had fled. If the ECPU had taken them, unknowing of the dangers, then no doubt one of the Clans' agents must have retrieved them back. I would not doubt the lengths we would go to keep our secrets away from prying eyes." "The knowledge of our research must have spread, or else why would the other Clans so take a vigorous approach for my search? Or I suppose some do believe the murderer that I am. In any case..." His face lowers as does his tail, and he sags down the table, his face cupped in his hands. "All those decades... gone just like that."
  19. I forgot to call for rolls. Advay got a good roll. You could still try rolling against it @Spacefurry. But just saying, it's nothing crazy like, "I killed a dude and laughed while doing it." Advay Bluff: 1d20+10=30
  20. "Some tea, thank you. To-to calm the nerves," the professor says as he sits down and when the cup of tea appears, he takes it and sips from it gingerly. He continues to drink, saying nothing, as the two of you explain and question him. As you finish your questions, he stays silent for a long moment. The waves crash against the rocks of your small island. He puts the emptied cup down and places his palms on top of the table, one on top of the other. "I didn't kill him, but perhaps in a way I had," he starts, voice solemn. "Him and I were always in the midst of experimentation and study of one kind or another. However, the day he died we had embarked on a major project. The details don't matter much but-- well if you want to know and to put it in simple terms, it was to path the regression of the Lemurians from beings capable of magic and science to barely sapient savages. It's a fascinating if horrid descent, and one of course unexplainable by mundane science." He shakes his head. "Forgive me. I was getting ahead of myself." "But yes. We had a... disagreement on how we were to next proceed," he pauses and looks down to find the words. Then he looks back up to the two of you and steels himself. "And one thing turned into the other, and that disagreement turned into a fight. It was a petty thing but... it happened, and Yatin, I think," the professor shakes his head and clasps his hands, ""He must have stumbled or--or tripped, because the next thing I knew he had alchemical brew splashed all over him. The results were not a pretty sight." He stops, takes a breath, and when he continues his voice cracks. "I ran away, of course I did. I've never seen a person die like that and-- and-- and..." He adjusts his glasses. "Could-- another cup of tea would be good, please." (If you do give him tea, he's going to take the time to drink it.)
  21. Salvo: 1 posts + 0 GM posts = 1 post = 1PP Tail of Gold (1) GM: 0 posts = 0 GM posts (to Salvo) Fate of the Serpent (0)
  22. Salvo armor growled as Ouroboros pointed out her miss. She turned to look as Aquaria dispelled the illusion with a snap. "I couldn't see clearly. Next time I won't miss." Then she took to the air in burst of flame as the great beast reached up with its tentacles and tore at the rocky ceiling. It ripped into it and threw boulders as huge as cars and houses down onto them. Salvo weaved and dodged through the air, less finesse and more brute force in her flight. With the boulders she could not escape, she smashed against them, trusting in her armor to handle the heavy trauma. All the while she fired salvos of missiles that streaked and screeched through the air at the beast.
  23. Reflex Save: 1d20+5 = 15 Toughness Save: 1d20+15 = 18 Toughness Reroll: 1d20+15 = 31 Move Action: Going to fly up in the air. Flight 0-6 (500 mph / 5,000 per Move Action; Feats: Subtle) {0-13}Flight 0-6 (500 mph / 5,000 per Move Action; Feats: Subtle) {0-13} Standard Action: Fire a bunch of missiles. 1d20+10 = 22. Toughness Save vs DC 25. AP: Damage 10 (Missile Batteries; Extras: Area [Targeted, Shapeable], Range [Ranged]; Feats: Accurate 2, Attack Focus [Ranged], Homing, Improved Range 3 [100 Feet per Power Rank], Indirect, Progression 2 [2 boxes per rank]) {40/40} (Additional Descriptors: Ballistic)
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