In Which We Do Not Heed The Prophet

Icaria: I put on my wizard hat.

Icaria: Icaria bought it in the marketplace. It doesn't really go with the duck mask at all.

Zanara: I put on my… zealot warlord hat?

Svetlana: I will wear midnig^H^H^H^H^H^H

Camena: I put on my tricorn hat.

Camena:

Camena: Svetlana: :heart:

Serestala: I have no hat. :disappointed:

Icaria: Have you got some sort of ribbon?

Serestala: Ribbons are a good way to lose hair in a fight but Serestala might put one in for a special occasion.

Svetlana: Svetlana is also ready to wear the mantle of the west at any moment or at least if she gets four hours to work with.

  • Svetlana gets very confused as she scrolls on Camena's sheet and sees 16 silver, 4 gold, before she scrolls up a little more to see "Craft XP:".

Camena: I had more, but I bought a handy haversack.

Svetlana: We're only level 3, that's pretty good.

Vance: It is later. Koma, the Sidereal disguised as an Immaculate, asked you to meet her at a small, back-alley teahouse. Back-alley is perhaps not the right word, as the part of town it occupies is an artificial island, built up off the coast of Prophet's Keep.

Vance: But it has a very back-alley vibe.

Vance: She's not there, as you enter—well, she is there, Svetlana can smell her—but you don't see her.

Vance: You do see a small evening crowd, masks raised halfway up for easy quaffing.

Vance: A patron drops a teacup, which lands upside down, but unbroken.

Vance: Eyes glaze over this event, apathetically. Except yours.

Icaria: Auspicious, inauspicious. Auspicious, inauspicious.

Vance: The smell is coming from inside of the cup!

Vance: But it was not before the cup fell.

Svetlana: Kiri's eyes do not glaze, but rather sharpen into razors of interest that fiercely chip away at the lacquer of the fallen cup like the frantic blades of the six-armed dervish that endlessly slices the worm of Sa'tha'al. Or possibly she just furrows her brow slightly. Hm.

Vance: (Solar Awareness makes everything so much less mysterious!)

Icaria: Obviously she can't be hiding in a teacup.

Icaria: That would be ridiculous.

Camena: "It's going to be one of those days, isn't it?" Camena asks from behind the tallest glass of whatever's good.

  • Camena gives a look that seems to say "It'd be an awful shame if I had to burn someone else's secret office to cinders."

Svetlana: Kiri nudges Serestala, and gestures towards the teacup.

Icaria: Camena has burned down one office too many. She's hooked.

Svetlana: Kiri says, "In."

Serestala: "In?" Serestala stares at the teacup. "I don't think I'd fit in there."

Icaria: I examine the teacup for occult nonsense.

Vance: It's a teacup.

Svetlana: Kiri considers this. Then she offers: "Strive."

Serestala: "Good enough." Serestala lifts the teacup.

Vance: Serestala lifts the cup, revealing Koma! That definitely is not how geometry is supposed to work.

Vance: She's essentially D4C'ing her way out

Icaria: That sounds like an occult nonsense.

Serestala: "So, should I crawl in there or are you coming out here?"

Vance: No one seems to find this very interesting.

Camena: "Do you have any offices nearby?"

Icaria: Maybe it was actually an occult chicanery.

Vance: A waiter leads Koma over to her reserved table, and she beckons you to come along with her.

Icaria: I should have been more specific.

Vance: "Let's sit down and have a drink!"

Vance: (I don't think All-Encompassing Sorcerer's Sight would reveal resplendent destiny stuff?)

Icaria: I direct your attention to the name.

Vance: Dangerous precedent to set!

Vance: It specifically doesn't show Exalted Charms, and I don't see a meaningful difference why it should work on Sidereal astrology/Lunar shapeshifting

Svetlana: Kiri frowns at Koma thoughtfully, then sets the teacup properly on the bar before heading to the table.

Vance: "Now, I've met Serestala before, but I don't know her friends. My real name is Kumaria. I am neither a Dragon-Blooded nor a monk. I am, as I think you know, one of Fate's Chosen."

Zanara: Zanara keeps her cool. Someone hiding inside a teacup is probably the weirdest thing she’s ever seen, but she’s got a good Gateway face.

Vance: "More specifically, I am one of Fate's Chosen who believes in helping and supporting the returned Solar Exalted."

  • Camena gives her the shade-throwingest look ever.

Vance: "I'm glad Serestala met up with you. That must mean that whatever happened on Tourmaline, you overcame it."

Vance: "Now I'm going to explain why you need to leave this particular island and never come back."

Serestala: "Turns out Bokuro was already dead."

Vance: "Not my Division."

Svetlana: Kiri frowns thoughtfully. "Isn't everybody fate's chosen, or they wouldn't exist?"

Camena: "Fate's not worth the trouble I cause for it," Camena says, either veiling an insult or getting very confused with her colloquialisms

Vance: "I'm not the biggest fan of my employer either, so if you want to complain I am all ears."

Vance: "But I'd like to be all ears somewhere where we aren't all at risk of dying horribly. Which is everywhere on this island."

Serestala: "The way I figure it most heroic way to live is always going to be somewhere that you have a chance of dying horribly."

Zanara: “Which is, to be fair, usually wherever we are.”

Icaria: "We're a bit wanted."

Camena: "We're not afraid of hummingbirds, if that's what's got ye tilted."

Vance: "I've been checking all the prophecies on this island, and it's just all bad news. A few centuries from now, this island is only going to be known for a devastating battle that kills some number of Anathema and destroys Prophet's Keep."

Vance: "So, by default, this could be any Solar, Lunar, or Sidereal's deathtrap."

Icaria: "So, we shouldn't go into battle, because we might die."

Svetlana: "History is written by the winners," Svetlana observes.

Vance: "But we also have a DivBat forecast suggesting that we're on the verge of war breaking out between two Great Houses over a territory boundary just a few miles away from Prophet's Keep."

Vance: "It's a potential flashpoint for civil war."

Camena: "…"

Icaria: "These houses…"

Zanara: "…bats?"

Icaria: "Would they perhaps be…"

Icaria: "Sesus and Cynis?"

Svetlana: . o O ( So if we win, we just have to write that history, ) Svetlana doesn't say, because everyone's on another topic now.

Vance: "Yeah that sounds about right."

Icaria: "Division of Battles," says Icaria, using lightning induction to sound knowing.

Vance: Take a relevant Lore background for that, we'll count it as introducing a fact.

Icaria: I suppose "pretending to know things" is a valid specialty.

Icaria: But hey, might as well go with "Heaven."

Vance: It's kind of hard to arbitrate the scope of what that would let you know

Icaria: True, that wouldn't be a specialty I could use for introducing facts, although I suppose rolling Lore to introduce bullshit nobody else can disprove is valid.

Icaria: I did it to Sivana.

Vance: "I can give you one more piece of evidence—well, one each, I guess?—but I'm going to warn you it's kind of a doozy."

Serestala: "I think we're going to need a little more persuading."

Svetlana: Kiri looks flatly at him. "It's not as if the problems here are gonna fix themselves if we just leave. … yeah?"

Vance: "I can give you Conclusive Wisdom."

Vance: "You're going to see how you die."

Vance: "That's almost never fun."

Icaria: "Presumably that death is avoidable, if you think showing us will avoid it."

Svetlana: "Tragic," Svetlana sighs, sadly, looking down at her nonexistent drink. "Smothered in kittens after fixing everything. If only I'd checked that one last fix."

Vance: "Fate is too complicated to really talk about with simple words like 'avoidable' or 'unavoidable,' but you pretty much have it."

  • Icaria considers the situation carefully.

Vance: "Even where Fate says, 'it is written,' the Exalted often rewrite."

Icaria: "And when this prophecy comes from you, we should believe it?"

  • Icaria observes carefully to see if this trips a verbal tic.

Serestala: "I already know how I'm going to die. There are going be statues of it all over wherever it happens whenever it happens."

Svetlana: "Lucky," Kiri sighs. "Nobody makes kitten-smothering statues."

Vance: "I'm Chosen of Venus. She's one of the five goddesses who weaves destiny. That's basically as good a source of an oracle as you're going to get.

Serestala: "They might if everything is already fixed."

Svetlana: Kiri looks off into the distance … and imagines

Vance: "Now, doing this is going to take a lot out of both me and you, so it'd probably be easiest if we tried to only do it for one of you. I can, uh, give you some privacy to talk before making up your minds."

Vance: She indicates the teacup.

Svetlana: "They will call the kittens Nightstrangler and Sunpurrerer," she muses. "Fluffragnarok and Tumpocalypse. Felix the Ender, Xira Mistofeles, and Warm Furry Death."

Camena: "There's not a one of us here who can't muck about with heads and hearts, if you count Seresalta makin' you see stars. Anything you show us is like as not to be the same flimflam—and take it from a flimflam woman, I'm better at the con."

Vance: "No, this is some real, authentic visions."

Svetlana: Kiri snerks. Seresalta. Salta the earth? Salta the sea? SALTA BATTERY

Vance: "I don't even get to see what your prophecy is, so only you'll know."

Camena: "There's always a way to prove your good will," Camena says.

Vance: "I swear that this is a genuine prophetic vision of whoever volunteer's death, free of any compulsion or unwanted influence, done with no intention other than to provide a warning that this island is a killzone."

Svetlana: "I'm game to see how I die," Kiri says. "Only, I don't think I care? So maybe I'm not the best. Hickory'd maybe get the most out of it?"

Camena: "Nah, say it again, but leave out the last clause. Creates ambiguity in the intention."

Vance: "I'm not saying that whole thing again. No mucking with heads or hearts, I promise. This is exactly what I say it is."

  • Camena snaps her fingers and flares her caste mark.

Zanara: “I’ll volunteer,” Zanara says. “I’d ask none of you to do something I wouldn’t do myself.”

Icaria: "I don't object, although somebody else is probably a better witness."

Vance: Koma/Kumaria opens a rectangular case of lacquered wood that's holstered on her belt, producing a strip of paper inscribed with Old Realm prayer calligraphy.

Icaria: I observe it for occult shenanigans.

Vance: She takes her hand away, and the prayer strip remains in the air, hanging fixed.

Vance: This is absolutely occult shenanigans.

Icaria: Time to geek out!

Vance: It begins to bloom with violet flowers.

Vance: But, just as suddenly as they blossomed, they wilt, die, and fall.

Vance: Zanara—tell us the story of how you die on this island.

Icaria: Now I regret not stepping forward so I could tell the story of how I drove the island mad with lust and got myself killed at the center of a bloody, mostly-undressed battle against the Immaculate hegemony.

Icaria: But that would merely have proved that Icaria is a bad witness.

Zanara: Amidst an island wreathed in flame, the people driven mad with an infectious rage from a careless word, pierced with arrows, blades, and knives before she’s torn apart — ultimately, dead by her own hand, if by proxy, as she tried to turn the people against her enemies. The worst part is, she doesn’t even know if the tactic worked.

Vance: Roll whatever Zanara's current Willpower is

Zanara: Four!

Vance: She goes down to having four points of temporary Willpower

Vance: The vision ends at the point where Zanara draws her last breath. At least, she thinks, they did not find her.

Vance: The rest of you don't see any of this. Zanara's vision lasts only a few seconds before she startles back to consciousness.

Zanara: She lets out a breath she didn’t realize she’d been holding. “…well… that was… illuminating.”

Vance: "You might want to sit down. Make sure you drink some water. It's rough."

  • Icaria takes notes.

Vance: "Hopefully your vision didn't make me look like a complete idiot."

Icaria: "Here, let me take your pulse."

Zanara: “Rough is one word for it,” Zanara says, holding her arm out to Icaria. “And no. It was more or less as you said it would be.”

Icaria: "I suppose the next question is… if not here, where would you have us be?"

Vance: "So, that actually confirms some things I didn't know, in that you are now definitely the Anathema that die here, or at least some of them, instead of just probably being them."

Vance: "As for where you go, well, you essentially have two options. Option one, you simply leave this island, and go as you please. As far as I know there isn't anywhere more dangerous for you, prophecy-wise."

Svetlana: "… storm the imperial manse …" Kiri mutters.

Vance: "Option two, if you're interested, is that we can work together. Once I finish my getting-you-out-of-here mission, my next mission involves following up on some intelligence about the Mask of Winters' efforts at obtaining an incredibly destructive relic. I'm definitely more likely to succeed on my mission if I have a Circle of Solars helping me, and stopping the Mask of Winters from being able to wipe out cities is hopefully something you care about."

Zanara: “You’re asking us to abandon the people of this island,” Zanara says. “To leave them under the heel of the Realm.”

Vance: "All I ask is that you evaluate your place in the world, and consider the amount of joy you can bring into the world if you die on this island compared to that which you can achieve if you do not."

Vance: "If you choose to stay here and walk to your own death, that's pretty intense, but it's really not what I would recommend."

Vance: "Instead, I could keep monitoring the threads of prophecy, and let you know if or when Prophet's Keep comes into the clear, so to speak. These things are fluid over the long term."

Icaria: "Well, if we ignore the prophet saying we'll die, we'll totally die."

Zanara: Zanara smiles. “Revolutionaries rarely survive their own revolutions in any case.”

Vance: "Some would argue that is a defect, rather than a feature."

Svetlana: "Your argument is compelling," Svetlana says. "The only problem is that accepting compelling arguments to leave projects unfinished can be a problematic strategy."

Icaria: "I would feel kind of bad not helping the people I promised to help. But maybe we can just… steal them?"

Icaria: "Surely we can find a use for a few dozen extremely fit dudes in our next project."

Svetlana: "Personally, I swore an oath, so I am sort of inclined towards … well, uh, that is not enough dudes."

Svetlana: "I was sort of inclined towards Icaria's suggestion before its scale became obvious."

Camena: "How many souls are on this island?"

Camena: "And Fate…my impression is that there are some things outside it, yes?"

Vance: Kumaria produces an emerald spider from a shirt-sleeve, and repeats your question to it.

Vance: "Population: 274,654" it says, in the cutest voice ever.

Vance: "Yes, it has blind spots. Whatever you fought with on Tourmaline, when Serestala came to join you, was one of them. I could see the danger, but not the cause."

Vance: "If you want to share, I'd be interested."

Icaria: "That was a deathknight. Name of… I forget."

Svetlana: "Prophet," Kiri says.

Icaria: "Something long that started with Prophet. Maybe this is his island?"

Svetlana: "Prolly," Kiri agrees.

Icaria: "Truth in labelling."

Svetlana: Kiri checks under the table for Prophet.

Vance: "I think there are details other than his name that are more interesting?"

Svetlana: "A bit dim," Kiri assesses. "Also a bit shiny."

Icaria: "Oh, and he'd strong-armed Bokuro somehow into opened a shadowland on the island that the Mask of Winters or whoever could use as a passageway."

Icaria: "It's okay, I sealed it with a spell."

Zanara: “He has no love for the Mask of Winters.”

Vance: "Good job, shadowlands are pretty bad news."

Vance: "Did you get a sense of his overall plan?"

Vance: "What does the Mask of Winters want to bring through it?"

Serestala: "Not really? Didn't seem like Mask of Winters like to share much with the guy."

Vance: "That does seem like the behavior of a half-mad ghost-king."

Icaria: "I didn't get to beat too much out of him because apparently we give people their first attempt to murder lots of people free?"

Svetlana: "That what he is?" Svetlana asks. "I've never been totally clear."

Icaria: "Something about degrading local souls…"

Zanara: “People can change,” Zanara says. “He may yet prove to be an ally.”

Icaria: See what not updating logs gets me!

Vance: "We don't completely understand the nature of the Mask of Winters. He's definitely a ghost, but ghosts aren't supposed to be able to attain anything close to the degree of power we think he might have."

Svetlana: "To be fair," Svetlana says, "I am totally going to need that freebie someday."

Serestala: "Is it only the first time in front of you count or have I already used my freebie?"

Vance: "Degrading souls sounds like a standard part of the Abyssal Exalted—that's what we've been calling them—their operating protocol. They preach death."

Vance: "The worst incident we recorded had a town of three hundred committing mass suicide after hearing a deathknight's sermon."

Vance: "Bad news."

Icaria: :C

Icaria: So, hm, fleeing our destined death!

Icaria: Icaria really doesn't want to ignore the prophet. That's how they always get killed in the books.

Zanara: “The world wasn’t full of enough wickedness, apparently…”

Vance: "Well, to be optimistic, the appearance of the Abyssals came with a golden lining."

Camena: "Demons—they wouldn't show up in your prophecies?"

Vance: "That would be you."

Vance: "Um, depends. The most powerful of them wouldn't show up, but sometimes the lower circles can get temporarily enmeshed in Creation's destiny."

Camena: "Second Circles," Camena clarifies, uncharacteristically sincere. "Someone… someone nasty. Like the Quarter Prince."

Icaria: "Please don't summon the Quarter Prince."

Icaria: "He is a jerk."

Camena: "I cannot promise I won't summon the Quarter Prince."

Vance: "Okay so I see where you're going with this."

Icaria: "Summoning the Quarter Prince is not the pathway to preventing a fiery death."

Icaria: "Or the destruction of the landmass on which you are currently standing."

Vance: "Even though a demon might not have appeared in the vision, if it would save Zanara's life, that impact would be noticeable in the vision."

Vance: "Zanara, was there any hint of something like that?"

Camena: "Whether we're here or not…we can always leave the would-be-warriors a little gift. Tilt the odds in one side's favor or another or neither."

Svetlana: Kiri squints at the Sidereal. "Uh," she says. "Also, was there any hint of you having left the island to go hunt an artifact?"

Zanara: “No, just… a very bad idea getting rapidly out of control.”

Icaria: "I could definitely leave them my magic masks."

Icaria: "At the very least they could use them to escape."

Camena: "Or we could drop a boat on them."

Svetlana: "Swore an oath," Kiri points out. "Zanara too."

Icaria: What exactly was the oath?

Vance: "There are very few good reasons to break an oath sanctified by Heaven, but 'avoiding death' is probably one of them."

Svetlana: Zanara basically swore to save the island. Svetlana swore not to wimp out on the matter, which was cagier but not sufficiently.

Vance: "Does the wording of your oath specify a time frame you have to do it in?"

Vance: "That's most people's go-to dodge."

Svetlana: Kiri looks at him. "What gets saved if we dodge, xira prophet?"

Icaria: "I suppose we could move somewhere else and undermine the Realm with sorcerous sendings."

Vance: "The Realm is a world-spanning empire. There are an abundance of places you could undermine it from that are not here."

Svetlana: "'Cause that doesn't really sound like how I like to handle oaths, y'know, but if there's something on the other side more substantive than 'the good work you could do if you weren't such an oath-dodging squirm'…"

Svetlana: "I did mention the prophet part a'purpose," she adds. "Um, I guess if you don't know, though, that's fine."

Vance: "The law is a city built from swords, by means of which the people are cut into better shapes. A very great deal of my job is understanding the intricacies of those swords, what they will and will not permit. My goal is to guide you through the blades, to safety."

Zanara: “It is good to see Heaven’s hand at work apart from us,” Zanara says, “but I must confess I feel very poorly about relying on technicalities…”

Vance: "Me neither, but this is life or death. I think most philosophies agree that's a pretty extenuating circumstance."

Icaria: "It seems like the kind of thing that would come back to haunt us."

Icaria: "I fear we will simply have to find a way to keep our oath without destroying the island."

Icaria: "Which means that we'll need your guidance."

Vance: "It's better to be haunted than haunting!" Koma says, clearly getting frustrated at running out of eloquent ways of articulating her arguments

Camena: "If you've got any favorites, they can stow on the Sparrow. No skin off my nose if we've got a few more mouths. And kids are 'specially great at cleaning. They've got such tiny hands. Get all the nooks good and scrubbed."

Vance: "I don't think we'll need to evacuate the island. If you end up not being the ones who die here, then it can't be destroyed until some other Anathema come here and die."

  • Camena looks broken, for just a moment, then goes red.

Camena: "Is that how this shit works? Just a lot of word games waiting for the sentences to fit a nice context? Sun Almighty, what kind of world is that and why in the Hells are we even bothering to save it?"

Vance: "Creation is a work in process."

Icaria: "It seems like a fairly straightforward prophecy to me. Some people not unlike us are going to die here, and the island will be destroyed."

Icaria: "That indicates to me that our actions as currently projected won't make things peachy for any prolonged period."

Vance: "Fate's not what most people think it is. It's not infallible or predetermined or all-powerful. It's the weaving of the world, the constant work of keeping things together at the seams of sense. I try to make the choices that lead to as good a future I can manage, and play my small role in the work of doing Fate."

Camena: "But that's not a prophecy! That's just a story. It's just…just a net waiting to fill with the right kind of fish. And what, there's nothing to be done for the moment? No work around? No cheat?"

Svetlana: "Can we change the maps?"

Vance: "There is a work around for this situation, although I'm afraid it's going to be more word games."

Vance: "The, let's call it a nexus of probability that one or more of you dies here sometime in the immediate future—that's because of the outbreak of war between Cynis and Sesus."

Vance: "If you can stop that from happening, that might be a big enough adjustment in the course of fate to override the future Zanara saw."

Svetlana: Kiri's eyes shine with hope. "You mean, if we can keep one or more of us from dying, then two or more of us might not die?"

Icaria: "How much do we want to stop a war between two of our enemies?"

Vance: She looks Kiri square in the eye. "You're difficult to understand."

Vance: All of you are sure she's lying, though!

Serestala: "Well, if it keeps us from dying it seems like it's worth the try."

Icaria: Wow, her Guile must be really low.

Camena: Is Limit just a straight-up Essence roll?

Vance: For your Limit trigger, yeah

Svetlana: "I am definitely willing to try not to die in the immediate future to keep from dying in the slightly less immediate future," Kiri agrees, after a momentary hiccup of confusion at being understood.

Vance: "Thank Heaven," Koma says, finally reaching for her drink and taking much-needed glug.

Vance: What's Camena's Limit at?

Camena: 8

Vance: *stressful music plays*

Svetlana: My goodness, are you going to break before me? That's cutting it awfully close.

Svetlana: "… I admit I'm completely lost as to the rules for this and what it takes to change the future," Kiri admits. "Like, completely lost. Leaving aside all considerations of ethics and planning and trust I don't even really understand how leaving the island differs from summoning a demon, bearing the prophecy in mind, or trying not to die in the turf war, or how that's different from trying not to die in general, and what history books the future history is written in, and whether it has to actually be this island, and whether breaking off a piece and burning a bunch of paper Anathema dolls counts and if Zanara leaves the prophecy of her death ends so are we all off the hook and also are sharks actually Exalted because they can fly and the whole shark island thing and I never really understood that either."

Vance: "Think of the future I showed you being…damn, I don't have a good metaphor. Think of it as a horse."

Svetlana: "Of course, of course," Kiri nods.

Vance: "As long as you're on the island, you're on the horse. You can try to deal with the underlying horse situation without getting off."

Vance: "But every second you spend on the horse, you are on a horse."

Vance: "But if you leave this island, you're not on the horse any more. And if you leave it alone, the horse is like as not to wander off."

Camena: "…I don't remember you answering, do you have an office nearby? House? Home? Chalet? Apartment?"

Svetlana: Kiri relaxes, getting it. She smiles.

Svetlana: She reaches out. She pats Koma's hand. She looks into his eyes.

Vance: "That was incredibly dumb."

Svetlana: "Who the do you think we are?" she says, and beams.

Vance: "The Chosen of the Sun returned, ma'am."

Vance: "It would be impossible to stop your fate, but the Lawgivers do impossible things almost by nature."

Svetlana: "I'm not going anywhere," Kiri says. "If I were the kind of person to go somewhere, then I wouldn't be the Chosen of the Sun returned. I refuse. But thank you."

Vance: "Fair enough."

  • Svetlana hits Limit 11.

Vance: And on that, I think we should end

Vance: So I have time to figure out just how this is gonna go to hell.

Camena: No, no.

Icaria: Oh, gods.

Camena: Hell's coming here.

  • Zanara wonders if Zanara should roll as well.

Icaria: I'd better go finish my sorcerous working.

Icaria: It's not like it can make things worse.

Icaria: Can I roll again, Vance?

Vance: I don't think this is going to be a downtime break

Icaria: It's been three weeks!

Vance: If that elapsed in the past, sure

Vance: Jenna, how do you think Svetlana's going to react here?

Icaria: I'm honestly not sure how long we've been at Prophet's Keep.

Vance: It's been slightly under 24 hours by my count

Icaria: We met with Qu Qukuququ, pretended to be a youth gang for a hip modern kung fu priest, and then got Sidereal'd at by a Sidereal.

Vance: You got here last night

Serestala: An eventful few days here at Prophet's Keep.

Icaria: Certainly a flush 24 hours as far as XP goes.

Svetlana: If Limit were less of a great curse or if something terrible were immediately impending, then she would ride out the moment and then find an excuse to go outside and then sit against the wall and reaction hyperventilate. But that's not impressive enough when nothing depends on her being there. Hmm. Becoming the mask is still vaguely possible if she immediately responds to her own declaration by hiding from Svetlana. Going actual Kamina is possible but I don't think she has the kinds of talents to make it meaningful. Hm.

Svetlana: I think social stress and having to psych herself up to what she considers ridiculous hubris for just a small Svetlana in order to stand up to him for the sake of her defining principle and her oath … will either have her hide in Kiri or go Heart of Flint.

Svetlana: Or possibly if Limit is really magical she'll click and go full Kamina.

  • Svetlana gives the GM three options, and is done.

Svetlana: Really going full Kamina is a subset of hiding in Kiri.

Svetlana: So two and a half.

Svetlana: (Sorry for ending the session early. :disappointed: I would have hit 10 Limit for going along with him, though!)

Vance: Nah, I just took that as an excuse :stuck_out_tongue:

Svetlana: I mean, 10 is not 11, but it is 10! That's as many as one tens!

Svetlana: And that's bad!

  • Icaria buys up to Appearance 5.

Svetlana: That is more than me!

Icaria: Well, I've been working really hard on my shoulders.

  • Icaria buys Presence up as well.

Icaria: I have now become theoretically socially competent.

Icaria: For a definition of that term that includes almost no ability to read intentions and a Guile that would fail to deceive most inanimate objects.

Zanara: That’s more Appearance than me, heck.

Icaria: Well, in fairness, I think it's pretty obvious that Icaria spends more time caring about how he looks than anybody else in the party.

Zanara: This is true.

Serestala: Icaria is a fancy lad.

Svetlana: …I'd put him at number three.

Icaria: "Do I pass for the satrap" doesn't count, Svetlana!

Svetlana: ^_^

  • Svetlana tries to choose between Linguistics and Occult.

Svetlana: I could get Occult to 3 and then when I really, really want to be a sorcerer it is closer, or I could get Linguistics to 3 and give future personas all a skill point each.

  • Icaria tries to choose between Melee and Presence for next week.

Icaria: I could train you in either, which would make it faster.

Icaria: I've got 6 XP still, so I could invest enough to get you to 1 or 2 without missing it.

Icaria: Or do you already have >0?

Svetlana: I don't have Melee!

Serestala: Someday I will invest more heavily in melee. Maybe.

Svetlana: I won't turn my nose up at free ability points, although Melee is tricky. I dragged Presence to 3 already, alas.

Icaria: I meant Occult or Linguistics.

Svetlana: Oh!

Zanara: I don’t know if my war charms let me train PCs…

Icaria: Lore Charms definitely do, if you don't mind absorbing a few of your sensei's intimacies.

Serestala: I should get a point of occult so Serestala stops with the ignorance on all things.

Serestala: Then she will only be ignorant on 96% of problems.

Serestala: But able to punch ghosts.

Vance: Tiger Warrior doesn't have any effects on PCs

Icaria: You could take my intimacy of liking Svetlana and improve your self-esteem.

Vance: but that could be the start of a tree

Svetlana: I increased Occult from 0 about four real life hours ago and like twenty minutes ago IC so I don't think I'd feel bad shuffling numbers to take advantage of your offer.

Icaria: I do need teaching time IC, though.

Icaria: But learning sorcery from Icaria seems pretty reasonable

Zanara: Maybe I’ll do some poking at stuff then. I know I have more xp than it says on my sheet, anyway

  • Zanara is legendarily bad at keeping up with XP.

Serestala: You are legendarily bad at it.

Svetlana: Yeah, I assumed that I'd be learning from you anyway.

Svetlana: Just in the non-Charm sense

Zanara: How much xp did I end up forgetting about with Murdoc? like, 80?

Svetlana: If the number issue were addressed how would it work?

Serestala: Dear, should you really be revealing your bad XP habits as accomplishments?

Zanara: haha

Svetlana: In fairness, Murdoc was like my favorite member of the A-team and in no way appeared underpowered.

Icaria: We're up to 140 XP now.

Zanara: … okay! *writes that down*

Icaria: Anyway, I can commit 5 XP to raise you to Occult 2.

Icaria: I should have bought the upgrade since it would have let me train Serestala at the same time.

Icaria: But I already bought these perfect lats and I won't do the math again in reverse.

Serestala: Fair enough.

Serestala: Perfect lats are important.

Svetlana: Sweet!

Icaria: It seemed so at the time.

Serestala: Maybe I'll buy meri- Nah.

Svetlana: Thank you Icaria!

Svetlana: Do I shop your Intimacies or do you give me one?

Icaria: In theory I pick but courtesy dictates the shopping.

Svetlana: Enh, feel free. ^_^

Icaria: Upgrading would also have allowed me to invent one for you, like "I Am obsessed with curry."

Svetlana: I can always bury any I don't like forever in a small box in my psyche.

  • Icaria considers which Intimacy is most bound up in Icaria's sorcery knowledge.

Icaria: The funniest option is boy-craziness, but also the most intrusive.

Icaria: The logical, non-funny option is "I like to do things by the book."

Svetlana: It's probably easiest to inadvertently pick up a catchphrase like "Speaking of which, I could use another book.", "I'm entitled to meddle because of reasons.", "I really hate fairies," or "Things should fit in their boxes" instead of a like.

Icaria: I'll let you choose, then.

Svetlana: OK!

  • Svetlana decides "I'm entitled to meddle because of reasons" feels the least like brainwashing and the most like spending way too much time with Icaria, so goes with that one.

Icaria: Yeah, Camena picked that one also.

Icaria: So I guess that makes it the Bureau motto.

Svetlana: ahaha <http://geostatonary.tumblr.com/post/143616212518/at-last-i-have-determined-a-simple-and-intuitive>",

Icaria: Ironically, buying the upgrade that lets me give you any Intimacy I like feels less like brainwashing, because I can just give you "Sorcery, so cool."

Icaria: Instead of determining which part of my brain you mind sharing the least.

Svetlana: Yeah.

Svetlana: "Flame Ducks: We're entitled to meddle. Because, reasons." (crest)

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