Party Foul - Part Two

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, a quick recap, I guess.

<Miranda> Yeah, I could use knowing where the hell I am and what I'm doing.

<Hollyhock God> Recently, by which I mean, 'right now,' you threw a party for Joktan as a preliminary suck-up before tossing some bribes his way.

<Grayson> ((I think you're stuck on the missing stairs ;p ))

<Immanuel> And I've got a bunch of waiters in my belly.

<Hollyhock God> Slightly less recently, Miranda was trying to figure out the secrets of the Reliquary of Life, and Dan received an email prompting him to enter a mysterious equation into the Reliquary through his all-connecting laptop.

<Miranda> ((You are vast. You contain multitudes. And you contradict yourself.))

<Henry> Our tables our now the wait-staff, which conveniently solved both the lack of waiters and the animated tables

<Hollyhock God> Dan did not do that because he is lame and "cautious" and doesn't input mysterious strings into all-powerful bloods of God just because somebody dared him to.

<Dreams> (Someone anonymous dared him to, even.)

<Henry> Bah.

  • Dan is a bad Power. :(

<Hollyhock God> But, it seems that somebody else did it for you, in the middle of your party, thus driving the Reliquary into a freaked-out overdrive.

<Grayson> ((Anonymous, the Power of the Internet?))

<Hollyhock God> Things began coming to life willy-nilly, and various Nobles in the basement have been trying to shut it down.

<Dreams> (Major Incarnation!)

<Immanuel> {Power of Lulz}

<Dan> (4chan is their Chancel.)

<Miranda> ((Lolcat))

<Dan> (4chancel)

<Hollyhock God> Dan did his best to connect to the Reliquary again, but it bit off one of his hands, drank his semi-divine blood, and began pouring out life even harder.

<Hollyhock God> The building is now trying to get up off of its foundations and walk away.

<Miranda> (Is it wrong that I can actually see this working in Nobilis?)

<Hollyhock God> If Joktan sees this, he's going to sneer.

<Hollyhock God> You don't want that.

<Hollyhock God> What do you do?

<Hollyhock God> Let me see, Dreams, Commerce, and Bridges are in the basement.

<Miranda> Well… uh. Where am I?

<Hollyhock God> Miranda is with Joktan.

<Dan> (Do I have a Wound, and if so, how severe is it?)

<Immanuel> Wasn't she going down the stairs?

<Dreams> Actually, she had come downstairs to complain to Dreams.

<Hollyhock God> Henry and Grayson are running about.

<Immanuel> Or stuck on them

<Miranda> (… I'm with… what?)

<Hollyhock God> Immanuel is feeling slightly ill.

<Grayson> Actually, I'm with Joktan

<Hollyhock God> Look, I know where everything but you is.

<Dan> (And shouldn't I have a tracert miracle finishing?)

<Hollyhock God> Knowing where you is, is your job.

<Immanuel> I was with Joktan but I have a feeling not for long.

<Grayson> Trying to convince him that this is all part of the opera.

<Hollyhock God> So decide where Miranda is and logic suggests that you will be correct!

<Henry> (Well I could just make the building want to stay where it is. I suppose, but repeating the same miracle twice is kind of boring. I'm also with Joktan)

<Hollyhock God> Nonsense, you can't have the ambition to do nothing. :)

<Henry> (Fair enough.)

<Henry> (Does the building have like, legs or tendons or something with which it will be trying to move?)

<Hollyhock God> I don't think so, but you could imagine some sort of brick trailing legs if that makes it easier to visualize.

<Hollyhock God> Right now it's sort of stirring and getting ready to try and pull its way out of the ground.

  • Grayson sweeps the passing Power of the Stage into a waltz.

<Henry> (I was more thinking of stuff to cut with my scalpel.)

<Immanuel> Pardon me.

  • Immanuel bows.

<Hollyhock God> I suppose there's probably going to be something you can cut to hobble it, but not until after it's out of the ground.

<Henry> (Gotcha.)

<Hollyhock God> Let us, for the moment, focus on what's going on upstairs, then.

<Grayson> "We seem to be having some minor difficulties with the building," he whispers to her, too low for Joktan to hear. "You think you could convince it that it wants to join in the show?"

<Miranda> Well. Sensibly, Miranda would be trying to knock heads in the basement to stop people dying. But that's not playing along with the farce.

<Immanuel> I'm hightailing it to somewhere I can upchuck waiters with no one the wiser. Like the entrance to our fleeing building.

<Hollyhock God> What's the Stage like, anyway?

<Hollyhock God> Did you have any particular thoughts on that?

<Dreams> (All the world's a stage, the show must go on, etc?)

<Grayson> Hmmmm.

<Grayson> Stage and Mask as twin sisters, I think?

<Hollyhock God> He's talking about the Power of the Stage.

<Grayson> Both always putting on a show of some sort in their own way.

<Dreams> (I think if we had The Stage as a guest we probably had one, but it might have been low-rise for easy access/exit.)

<Grayson> Very dramatic, of course.

<Dreams> (You know, if we didn't have one… that would, in theory, make the entire BUILDING the 'stage' of our production.)

<Dreams> (Get her to animate it! Into, well, standing still.)

<Grayson> (Which would make sense, considering that everyone at the party is part of the cast.)

<Dreams> (Or waltzing, whichever.)

<Hollyhock God> "Isn't it already in the show?" she asks you, spinning. "Seems like the show is just starting to get good."

<Hollyhock God> To the side, Immanuel can feel the ashy remains of the waiters he ate trying to crawl back up his throat. They seem awfully lively for eaten people.

<Grayson> "In a sense, it is," Grayson dips her. "But I don't think it knows at the moment what its part is, and I don't want it running away. I was hoping you might be able to help with that."

<Immanuel> I'm going to…release them.

<Immanuel> The super model method.

<Henry> (Ah, good)

<Hollyhock God> "Mmmm," she says, dipping low enough for a second to let one palm touch the floor.

<Hollyhock God> You don't know what she did, and the building still seems pretty lively, but whatever it's doing now doesn't seem to be preparing to run away.

<Hollyhock God> Off down a cooridor, Immanuel vomits up heaping piles of ash that coalesce into ashen clouds vaguely shaped like the waiters.

<Dreams> (Ash clouds make awesomer waiters anyway.)

<Hollyhock God> They aren't sure why they were suddenly in a dark hole, or why climbing out of it brought them out of your mouth.

<Dreams> (Assuming they can still, hrm, carry things.)

<Hollyhock God> They're pretty confused about a lot of things, actually!

<Henry> (I would imagine so.)

<Immanuel> "I work in mysterious ways."

<Hollyhock God> Let me see, the building is settled but plotting something. Grayson is waltzing with the Stage, and Immanuel is feeling a bit better.

<Hollyhock God> Henry!

<Hollyhock God> Joktan wants to know what's up and why your building was earthquake-proofed by a two-year-old.

<Henry> "An excellent question. I would guess that we are suffering from some sort of attack. I suppose that means we'll have to do a purge of the building designers… again."

<Hollyhock God> "Well, you know what they say about doing the same thing again and expecting a different result."

<Hollyhock God> Did we decide where Miranda was?

<Miranda> We did not.

<Hollyhock God> Time to collapse the waveform!

<Miranda> Excellent.

<Dreams> (Abaton!)

<Hollyhock God> Miranda is caught in a chandelier.

<Dreams> (Improbably.)

<Miranda> ….?

<Immanuel> (Acmonian Woods, romancing Lightning)

<Dan> (Technically, you're not collapsing the waveform, you're entangling it with the environment.)

<Hollyhock God> She thought she was going to go down to the basement and lecture, when the chandelier descended from the hallway ceiling and caught her in a tight embrace.

<Dan> </actual quantum mechanics>

<Dreams> (We only use Hollywood Quantum Mechanics here in Locus Praxael!)

<Hollyhock God> The chandelier does not resemble Noel as much as you would prefer. Its embrace is poky and cold.

<Miranda> (In mythic reality, he's collapsing the waveform.)

<Hollyhock God> "Oh, milady!" it cries. "How lovely you are. I only just noticed."

<Hollyhock God> The candles are probably going to set your hair on fire sooner or later.

<Henry> (Make the chandelier a shield against loneliness! Then its embrace will be warm and welcoming.)

<Miranda> "God. Dammit." Miranda says, attempting to disentangle herself from the object. She's not doing well at the moment.

<Dreams> (A dozen gods whip out cellphones and take pictures.)

<Hollyhock God> I think she's just out of sight of the main party.

<Immanuel> (Poky and cold. How often I've heard that complaint.)

<Hollyhock God> Given that she was looking for the basement stairs.

<Dreams> (Fair enough.)

<Henry> (Also, the stuff is learning how to talk. That's not good)

<Dan> (Generally when it's cold, it's difficult to make pokey)

<Immanuel> By sheer happenstance, Immanuel went down the hallway she's entangled in.

<Hollyhock God> Curse you, Immanuel, and your narrativism!

<Immanuel> "What are you doing with that chandelier?!? We have a crisis!"

<Hollyhock God> "Our love cannot be denied!" says the chandelier.

<Hollyhock God> It holds Miranda tight. It's never been able to form Intentions before and it's spending Will to make sure it turns out right.

<Miranda> "I am. TRYING. to deal. With the situation."

<Immanuel> "Well feel free to try harder before the building collapses."

<Hollyhock God> The building helpfully makes a grinding noise to punctuate this statement.

<Miranda> "Have you been… eating the staff?"

<Immanuel> "Gee, maybe I should bring Joktan in here to make the chandelier despise you?"

<Miranda> "You've uh… you've got something on your…."

<Hollyhock God> "Yes, yes! The world must know of our love!"

<Hollyhock God> "I'm not feeling well, my lady," complains one waiter, who is, Miranda notices, a hovering cloud of man-shaped ash.

<Immanuel> "Don't change the subject, there's a potential violation of the Windflower Law occuring right before our eyes."

<Miranda> Does that little wiping thing people do when they try to show you that you've got a severed human hand on your clothes and you need to brush it off.

<Hollyhock God> Whoops!

<Immanuel> There is no hand, they're all ashed.

<Dreams> (Maybe you're a sloppy eater?)

<Hollyhock God> MEANWHILE!

<Hollyhock God> Down in the basement, chaos reigns. Even more than it was doing above.

<Miranda> (It's like a milk mustache.)

<Miranda> (Or crumbs.)

<Miranda> (Or something between your teeth.)

<Hollyhock God> Dan is clutching a stump. Everyone else is trying to hang on to wildly bucking furniture.

<Dreams> (Remember I turned all the furniture except one into the dream of a single grandfather clock. But presumably the reliquary can be doing other things.)

<Immanuel> (I have an ash moustache.)

<Immanuel> (Possibly a Van Dyke.)

  • David trusses up the still-sapient grandfather clock in ribbons and bows, attempting to make it a presentable present for the Scorn's-Regal.

<Henry> (Heh.)

<Hollyhock God> More stuff animates, then!

<Hollyhock God> The floor tiles start to leap up out of place and jump up and down.

  • Dan bridges the veins and arteries in his hand to each other appropriate so at least he isn't bleeding to death, and tries to focus on the problem not at hand.

<Hollyhock God> Doors slam open and shut.

<Hollyhock God> Your hair is starting to grow extremely quickly.

<Henry> (Clearly, we need Mary Poppins.)

<Dreams> "Right. Dan, we need to figure out a way to input this reversed formula into the Reliquary without it, um, burning your hand off. Again."

<Immanuel> (A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down.)

<Hollyhock God> The grandfather clock preens itself in a most ungrandfatherly way.

<Dreams> "Commerce, any suggestions?"

<David> "I could get my butler to input the code. He won't miss a tentacle or two."

<Henry> (Can Commerce bribe the reliquary to stop?)

<Dreams> "Can we… trade with it the right to do so?"

<David> "You'd have to ask it first!"

<Dreams> "Hmmm."

<Dreams> (1 AMP for Aspect-4 mythic-perspective-switching!)

<Dreams> (So, y'know, it doesn't take hours to do, which I recall it does now.)

<Dan> It's not an issue of him minding missing a hand, if I couldn't connect the cable, he couldn't either.

<Dan> (It's Aspect 3 to do so, but yeah.)

<Dreams> (Well, I've got Aspect 0, so it'll be a bit better by necessity.)

<Dan> (If you've got Aspect 0 it costs you 1 MP in here either way, yeah.)

<David> "Bridges, could you force a connection between the amulet and the laptop?"

<Hollyhock God> Isn't that a bit unnecessary when everything is coming alive, anyway?

<Hollyhock God> Ah, well.

<Dan> "I already tried!"

<Dreams> Is the Reliquary itself coming alive? If so, I won't do it, certainly.

<Dreams> (Try folding a Greater Preservation into your Creation?)

<Hollyhock God> It's just, you know, glowing and shimmering and such. And levitating.

<Dan> (I'd need to do a Word of Command for that.)

<Dreams> (Ah, unfortunate.)

<Hollyhock God> Try arguing!

<Hollyhock God> If nothing else, it gives me an excuse to do another MEANWHILE and give you time to think.

<Dan> I think I'll also dip into the mythic world to argue with the reliquary, since I can't seem to do anything in the prosaic.

<Hollyhock God> "Live!" shouts the Reliquary, now that you're listening. "Live! Live!"

<Hollyhock God> It sounds a bit drunk.

<Dreams> "Reliquary! You've been…. made sick! You need to let us help you!"

<Henry> (Give it coffee!)

<Grayson> (I think it's already too amped-up.)

  • Dreams emulates Dreams' acceptable and unquestioned nature.

<Hollyhock God> "My fate is unimportant! Everything must live!"

<Dreams> "Why now?"

<Dan> (Can I do a Lesser Sacrifice of the Reliquary's connection to this crazy code that was put into it?)

<Hollyhock God> "Because now I'm flush with power! The power to make everything live!"

<Hollyhock God> Hm, you can remove a thing's ability to connect other things. What would you be removing it from?

<Dreams> "But what price, if this power burns you out, and by trying too hard you are suddenly unable to make anything live?"

<Hollyhock God> It seems like the bridge is a separate thing from the two things it connects.

<Hollyhock God> So what's the bridge in this miracle?

<Dan> (The Reliquary is a seperate thing from it's power, no?)

<Dreams> "How did it feel back then, for a moment, cold and unconnected to anything?"

<Hollyhock God> "I was temporarily unable to make things live. But now I need to make them live again! It's been so long…"

<Hollyhock God> But doesn't there have to be a bridge between two things before you can sever them?

<Hollyhock God> If there's just a border, you can't de-bridge that.

<Hollyhock God> If there's a bridge between the reliquary and the equation, what is it?

<Dan> (Well, I don't know that there was strictly speaking a bridge between the reliquary and the rest of the world earlier either, and that seemed to work, but if that's an oops, I'll think on it.)

<Dreams> (Well, then, space itself was your bridge.)

<Hollyhock God> MEANWHILE!

<Hollyhock God> Miranda is attempting to extract herself from a lustful light fixture.

<Miranda> OK, so.

  1. People were dying, and Miranda couldn't save them. Which is technically a Serious Wound if Rand gets around to looking at it.
  2. Someone was messing with the reliquary. In the middle of a busy event.
  3. The furniture was proving excessively, even oppressively amorous.
  4. They were hosting a party for Joktan, to offer bribes they could barely afford. And Dreams didn't even ask. He lived away from here now— when was the last time he hosted anything on this scale?
  5. Praxael was still dead, and this whole affair was an unseemly effort at dealing with keeping outsiders from parceling up his Estates.

<Miranda> Long story short: Miranda was feeling a little bit frayed at the moment, and she’s just finished taking it out on a hapless chandelier.

<Miranda> I assume an Aspect 3 miracle is sufficient to tie it into knots? (Aspect 1, +2 for a hard miracle, -3 for being in-Chancel = 0 AMP.)

<Hollyhock God> The chandelier groans! It had formed a 9-point Intention! But Intentions are helpless against Aspect 3.

<Hollyhock God> So there it lies, twisted into knots.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, who's dead? All the waiters are right there, as good as ever!

<Hollyhock God> …albeit a bit dusty.

<Immanuel> Yes completely unharmed why are you looking at me like that?

  • Immanuel stares at the bound chandelier.

<Immanuel> "I had no idea you had such… leanings."

<Miranda> "Right. Fine. Whichever. We need to get to the basement. Now."

<Immanuel> "You go to the basement, I need to keep the building from destroying itself, and us, and our reputation."

<Hollyhock God> Miranda barges directly through the dramatic structure of my farce and into the basement.

<Miranda> (Aren't we about due for that?)

<Hollyhock God> The basement is in a state of mild chaos, as David decorates a clock, Dreams argues with the Reliquary, and Dan contemplates his next move while clutching a handless arm.

<Hollyhock God> But first I must meanwhile back to Henry and Grayson, I guess.

<Miranda> Miranda has misgivings, of course; Immanuel is in charge of saving our reputation?

<Henry> Indeed, as no doubt Joktan is very close to sneering.

<Henry> :D

<Immanuel> (Why not? I've done it once before. By the time I'm through Joktan will be proposing marriage.)

<Hollyhock God> Joktan is poking at the tray of candied seaweed a table has brought him. "Real waitstaff too expensive without Daddy to pay for things, eh? Had to consolidate servants and furniture?"

<Henry> (Oh, dear.)

<Immanuel> I rush into the ballroom, joining Henry and Grayson, ashy waiters in tow.

  • Dan decides that if he can't connect to the thing forcibly, maybe he can get the Reliquary to read the canceling formula. Bringing it up on his tablet, he says, "Hey, could you read this aloud?"
  • Grayson spins with the Stage back over to Joktan.

<Immanuel> "We highly value efficiency in the Locus Praxael. And the waiters had to change costumes for the next act."

<Grayson> "Sorry, I got swept up into the show. I don't know if you've met the Power of the Stage? She helped us integrate the building itself into our performance."

<Hollyhock God> The Reliquary helpfully reads out the anti-formula for you, timing its bursts of life energy to coincide with the symbols. Mysteriously, this doesn't do anything.

<Hollyhock God> "You know what I always say," says Joktan, "If you don't know, improvise…. quite a lot of that going round lately."

<Henry> (What exactly were we going to bribe Joktan about?)

<Hollyhock God> Not hassling you about getting adopted.

<Dreams> (I actually hoped to talk to him. And now that the walls between scenes are down, maybe I'll come upstairs with the next switch!)

<Dreams> (Actually, "do a scene switch whenever someone changes scenes" wouldn't be a bad mechanic.)

<Immanuel> I assumed bribes were just implied.

<Hollyhock God> Hm.

<Henry> (Maybe I'll go downstairs in exchange, I'm kind of stumbling up here. I could stumble down there instead!)

<Hollyhock God> In that case, I guess we're downstairs as Miranda arrives in the basement.

<David> "Miranda!" hisses David, warning Dreams and Bridges. "Hide all the living stuff!"

<Dreams> "Right, I need to go talk to Joktan. Miranda, you were fiddling around with this earlier, maybe you'll have some insight into how to get it to stop going haywire."

  • Dan blinks seeing Miranda "Miranda! Just who I wanted to see. Shield my good hand and this cable!"

<Miranda> "What. Is going. On. Down. Here." Miranda's hands are firmly on her hips, and she's still in her mourning garb so more scary than usual.

<David> "My Reliquary's been sabotaged and is animating everything and Dreams turned most of the furniture into the clock's dream but it keeps happening and it ate Bridges' hand."

  • David takes a while to regain his breath.

<Miranda> "Sabotaged? By whom?"

<Miranda> "It's animating them?"

<Miranda> "Dan, regrow your hand, that's just unseemly."

<Dan> "I don't know how to go about doing that."

  • Dreams gestures to the singing, dancing floor tiles, as he goes up the recently-thrashed-by-Miranda-stairs.

<Dreams> "Just find a good prosthetic and bridge it to you."

  • Miranda sighs.

<Miranda> "A human can heal from injury; by extension, Aspect can heal better."

<Dreams> "Humans aren't lizards, usually."

<Henry> (A hand is a bridge from a human to the world, right? :P)

<Hollyhock God> That means spending points to drop the Wound faster.

<Miranda> "What happened to his actual hand?"

<Miranda> (Yes, that's what it means! :) )

<Dreams> "Alternatively, we have a floating vessel of vital energy here, perhaps that could help?"

<Dan> "Yes, because sticking my hand into it worked so well the first time."

<Dreams> (A project to get a new hand!)

<Dan> (I'm pretty sure it would take Aspect 7 to regrow a hand nigh-instantly)

<Hollyhock God> I don't think you can heal Wounds with Aspect miracles at all.

<Hollyhock God> You can only spend MP to speed up your recovery.

<Hollyhock God> Although I guess you could keep the Wound and still have the hand?

<Henry> (how did the Reliquary destroy his hand the first time anyways? Just a flash of energy or something?)

<Dreams> (You don't actually spend MP now, you just "use an appropriate miracle" to increase wound-reduction time.)

<Hollyhock God> It bit him and sucked his blood.

<Miranda> (I think a suitable miracle allows you to move one or two categories down the chart, at HG discretion.)

<Hollyhock God> I guess it likes divine ichor.

<Dreams> (Aspect might, conceivably, be appropriate?)

<Hollyhock God> I guess that makes sense.

<Hollyhock God> But it doesn't resolve the plot!

<Dan> (If you can surf on sound waves at Aspect 7, you should be able to regrow a body part like a lizard or starfish)

<Dan> "Anyway, the hand can be dealt with later, we need to deal with the reliquary now."

<Miranda> "Fine. Let me see it."

<David> (What's the action to go Mythic? Something I need to miracle point on?)

  • Dan is not phased by his missing hand.

<Dan> (It's Aspect 3 to do it "now" )

  • Miranda walks over to the reliquary. "How did you get it to start doing all of this?"
  • Dreams heads upstairs at the next scene switch, anyway.

<David> David pokes his head into the Mythic World, and incidentally discovers that doing so has brought his whole body along. "Hey, Reliquary. You sure seemed to like eating Dan's hand, didn't you?"

<Hollyhock God> "There was power in it," the Reliquary admits.

<David> "Wanna eat another Noble's hand? I'll let you have mine, but only if you promise to stop animating everything here, and be a good do…err, good miraculous wonder."

  • Dan replies, "We didn't. Someone else did. I'm still trying to find out who," as a patch cable helpfully hovers itself near Miranda waiting to be shielded.

<Miranda> "When did this happen?"

<Miranda> "Someone was in the room?"

<Hollyhock God> "What would I do with all that power if I can't do anything with it?"

<Henry> (We'll start a fad for having only a single hand! It'll be all the rage, and all the Nobles who aren't dismembered will feel terribley gauche.)

<David> "Miranda's working on something that's going to need your power. A whole bunch of it. All the power. All of it!"

  • Dreams will go counterculture and have SIX hands! And the requisite six arms as well.

<David> "You should save it up, so you can help her do a really impressive super-miracle, instead of animating all these lame chairs. I mean, look at them."

<David> "Plus, delicious David-hand."

<Hollyhock God> "Hm. Maybe I would like that."

<Miranda> ((And we don't perceive any of the Reliquary's words?))

<Hollyhock God> If you're going to hang out in the ordinary world it's going to look as though David is talking to an object, yes.

<Hollyhock God> But presumably seeing other Nobles talk to objects is fairly normal.

<Miranda> I'll go mythic.

<David> "You have to promise, though. If I have to get my hand eaten and you don't stick to your word, I'll have you thrown into the heart of a black hole, and you'll never get to bring anything else to life."

<Hollyhock God> "Well… all right. I just got carried away, when I heard these funny words and I felt so strong all of a sudden. I'd been waiting for something to call me into action for so long… I got carried away."

<David> "You're forgiven, as long as you keep your power safe and sound until Miranda asks you to use it. Here you go."

<Miranda> "I've been trying to call you into action for days. Why the change now?"

  • David jams a hand into the reliquary's magical maw-space, wincing in pain.

<Hollyhock God> The Reliquary exercises a bit more care this time, drawing rivulets of your blood through the skin of your fingertips and into its central ruby.

<Hollyhock God> You still take a Deadly Wound, but what the hell.

<Miranda> ((Half the family is now amputees. I'm the worst protective goddess ever.))

<Henry> (:D)

<Dan> (Man, I lose a hand and all my plans get shot down, Commerce comes in and his works right away *and* he keeps his hand? This is revenge for the Lunar thing, isn't it :P )

<Immanuel> Nah, only two of them.

<Hollyhock God> The secret to having your plans be successful is to type many plans very fast.

<Immanuel> We'd need 3-and-a-half amputees.

<Hollyhock God> Also, you need to come up with explanations why your plans should work!

<Hollyhock God> Having a long argument about why what you're doing is possible is the key to Real Ultimate Nobilis Power.

<Dan> (Getting it to read the reverse formula seemed like it should have worked to me, it's a magic spell, those are often incanted, if I can't inject it forcibly, get it to read it for me? Ah well :/)

<Hollyhock God> The reading-the-formula-backwards plan actually should have worked.

<Hollyhock God> It's significant that it didn't.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, the Reliquary finally shuts down and goes dark… but not quite as dark as it was yesterday.

<Miranda> ((Did the Reliquary just say that?))

<Hollyhock God> Uh, no, it didn't.

<Miranda> ((OK. I did just ask it why it didn't work, y'see.)

<Hollyhock God> Yeah, I was trying to respond but everyone asked questions~

<Hollyhock God> Also I couldn't think of an answer besides "For dramatic effect!"

<Miranda> (Hah… OK.))

<Hollyhock God> Which didn't seem like something the Reliquary would say.

<Miranda> "Fine." Miranda nods. "Thank you David."

<Dreams> (Wait wait wait. The Stage was behind all of this!)

<Henry> (Oh, dear.)

<Miranda> "Dan, put your hand back together. David, are there any lingering effects from the animation?"

<Hollyhock God> Meanwhile, the building subsides. The waiters freeze for a moment, fearing dispersal, but they seem to be ash-men for good.

<David> (What should my Deadly Wound Affliction be?)

<Miranda> ("Lost a lot of blood.")

<Dreams> (Accidentally animating things now that your blood is tied to the Reliquary?)

<Immanuel> (Traded a hand?)

<Hollyhock God> Joktan kicks a table. "Stupid table! This waiter is defective."

<Dan> ("No longer in the right." >_> )

<Hollyhock God> "Life flows into me?"

<Immanuel> "They were only substituting for our Ash Waiters."

<Dreams> "Joktan! So sorry about the delay. You know how it is, finding good help and all."

<Miranda> "I'm going to go put this someplace safe where nobody can mess with it. I just hope Grayson and Henry have things under control upstairs."

<Hollyhock God> "Yes," says Joktan. "Yes, it is hard to find good anything."

<Henry> ("Under control" is relative, of course.)

<Immanuel> (So little faith in me.)

<David> (Works for me! What level?)

<Miranda> (Heeeee)

  • Grayson nods at Dreams.

<Miranda> (You didn't even help me out of the chandelier!)

<Hollyhock God> Level 4, I guess.

<Miranda> (Which, BTW, totally counts as a struggle.)

<Immanuel> (Who am I to interfere in love?)

<Grayson> "I believe the portion of our show involving living furniture has ended."

<Dan> (What's mine? "Doesn't have a hand" is kind of boring. )

<Miranda> (But… that's what happened.)

<Hollyhock God> Joktan looks around as though he were suspicious.

<Hollyhock God> But then he decides he doesn't care about your issues.

<Immanuel> "But that makes things of true worth really shine, does it not?"

<Hollyhock God> Joktan considers this statement.

<Miranda> (That's the disadvantage you have going on right now, right? You don't get a hand cut off and suddenly become a magnet for bees or unable to cross running water)

<Hollyhock God> "Well, I suppose they might,"

<Immanuel> {What if it was a bee-repelling hand?)

<Henry> (Hand of Protection Against Tigers?)

<Hollyhock God> "My hand has gone to be with the Creator."

<Miranda> (Obvious exceptions may bee obvious.)

<Dan> ( Not having a hand is something I can trivially deal with though, by several methods proposed above, as such it doesn't really feel like a good Affliction.)

<David> "Lord Joktan, I have brought you a gift!" announces David. "Behold, a living grandfather clock that dreams it is countless other pieces of living furniture!"

<Dreams> ("Cneph occasionally possesses my replacement hand.")

<David> Nng'Ketesh deposits the sapient clock gingerly before Joktan.

<Hollyhock God> The god hand!

<Grayson> (("My cyborg hand is more sapient than I'd like.))

  • Dreams heroically resists the urge to facepalm.

<Dan> (Who doesn't like a bull buster?)

<Hollyhock God> Joktan has never been given such a ridiculous piece of furniture.

<Henry> (Weirdest gift ever.)

<David> (He's gonna scorn the shit out of it.)

<Hollyhock God> "Wow," he says, his eyes open wide.

<Hollyhock God> "That is….. that is something special."

<Miranda> (Wounds shouldn't work like that.)

<Immanuel> "Thank you, I made it myself."

<Hollyhock God> He draws a long thin finger down the side of the panelling.

<Hollyhock God> "This is the dumbest thing I've seen all year. I have to congratulate you."

<Miranda> (Bribery: accomplished!)

<Henry> (It's ironic!)

<Hollyhock God> Achievement Unlocked: Please the Scorn's-Regal

<Immanuel> "I knew you would find it worthy of your scorn."

  • Grayson rolls his eyes at Immanuel.

<Hollyhock God> "Now we shall discuss you bribing me to overlook your unseemly lack of an Imperator," Joktan announces.

<Hollyhock God> And with that, he leads you into the smoking-room.

<Hollyhock God> The end.

  • You are now known as Rand Brittain

<Henry> (We totally need to make a rubber Imperator.)

<Dreams> "We're working on it. Selection of an Imperator isn't something to be done trivially, and…

<Henry> (Or an Imperator puppet.)

<Dreams> (Wait, really? At 7:30?)

  • Rand Brittain has an exam on Monday, so an hour-and-a-half of farce will have to do.

<Dreams> Ah, okay.

<Dan> (An inflatable Imperator for the carpool lane.)

<Henry> Ah, good excuse.

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