Thursday, Part Two

<HollyhockGod> The clock the HG uses is the real clock!

<TheAntiPiro> Bull.

<HollyhockGod> Well, at least we're all here.

<HollyhockGod> Laurel is about to put on her play in the Causa Sola for the guests.

<HollyhockGod> I guess we can assume they've been herded in, since the roof is full of holes.

<HollyhockGod> And, is everyone here except Alan, who's at work on the Looms?

<TheAntiPiro> Oh, are there any pointless decorations in the Halls of Fate like chandeliers or oversized statues?

<Viktor> just got back. Venture bros are distracting

<Laurelynne> I think my play shall be a one-act memoriam for the previous Dominus Taedii to show the causes of his tragic, suicidal fall.

<HollyhockGod> Would you like some?

<HollyhockGod> Suicidal enough to kill his Imperator?

<Laurelynne> Indeed. What could have made him fall so far into depression that he would so such an unspeakable thing?

<Viktor> Insanity brought from Ennui?

<Viktor> Cursed by his own power

<Viktor> To be Poe-esque

<Laurelynne> Perhaps he was convinced that the only true way to serve his nihilistic Code was to kill himself.

<Viktor> i think BFP was trying to change it so that the Imperator was being destroyed during the War and it caused him to go insane.

<Laurelynne> He could no longer endure the boredom of his humanity.

<HollyhockGod> I can see I introduced Chesterton into this campaign for a reason.

<Laurelynne> Hmm, perhaps. He may have seen something in Fate that caused him to become suicidal as well.

<Viktor> I rather that as well. The former power of Ennui found that no new creators (artists) were being creative enough… and his duty was bringing about the demise of any that were actually original

<HollyhockGod> I understood he was Rescued, so he wouldn't have Loom access.

<Laurelynne> At any rate, the play shall mainly be speeches by the actor playing Ennui, with one other player who will be in the roles of the mortal Viktor and, say, someone who tempts him toward suicide?

<HollyhockGod> An Excrucian?

<HollyhockGod> You can't really include any Noble in that role without making a political statement.

<Viktor> Who espoused destroying his duty in preference to his personal code

<HollyhockGod> Unless you wnat to do that!

<Laurelynne> I'm thinking about it.

<Laurelynne> Regardless, the play will be in the mode of a brief Aeschelian tragedy.

<Laurelynne> I do need conflict so I'll need a tempter. Who would be a good fit among the Nobilis?

<Viktor> Sorrow itself?

<Erwin> Hmmmm.

<Viktor> Creativity

<Viktor> something relating to art…

<Laurelynne> Hey, it wasn't me.

<HollyhockGod> A nameless Excrucian would work.

<Laurelynne> I suppose.

<Laurelynne> Though I wouldn't mind sticking it to Mr. Anguish. :P

<HollyhockGod> You can always attach another name to that role if you find out more about it.

<Laurelynne> Fair enough.

<HollyhockGod> You're more or less assuming that he existed at this point.

<Laurelynne> Well, that's artistic license for you.

<Laurelynne> And it won't be overt "you should kill yourself" stuff.

<Laurelynne> Anyway, what should be the former Ennui's name?

<Viktor> I imagined his conflict to be entirely internal

<Viktor> his name should be Hastur~

<Laurelynne> If that's the case, the "tempter" could be the personification of his Estate, but I'm not sure what kind of statement that would make either.

<Viktor> No, he killed himself in spite of his duty

<Viktor> So his tempter is his own personal code

<Laurelynne> So a personification of the Dark then.

<HollyhockGod> That's why I liked the idea of making it an Excrucian, so it's not accusing anyone.

<Laurelynne> Then it shall be Adam who triggers his fall.

<HollyhockGod> You could have several personifications for each Code, in that case.

<HollyhockGod> At least for the relevant ones of Light and Dark.

<Erwin> Well, this play will certainly try to be a tear jerker.

<Laurelynne> That's the idea.

<Laurelynne> But this former Ennui really strikes me as a Dark power.

<Viktor> the writer /is/ sorrow encarnate.

<Viktor> So his idea is lead by example?

<Laurelynne> And that's the tragic flaw.

<HollyhockGod> Sure, so his shoulder angels are Light and Dark.

<Laurelynne> That would be fine.

<HollyhockGod> So, who plays each role?

<Laurelynne> I guess Viktor can play himself, but he'll only come on stage at the finale when they kill themselves in unison.

<Laurelynne> The others should probably just be Chancelfolk, unless any of you wish to volunteer.

<Laurelynne> I'll be directing of course.

<Erwin> My place is in the audience for this kind of thing.

<TheAntiPiro> Alan will be careful not to touch chancel-related things until the guests are gone.

<Razzen> I could always ask some of our guests to volunteer as readers.

<HollyhockGod> All right, so the actor delivers his soliloquy with his two voices of conscience.

<HollyhockGod> Wouldn't that make you look lazy?

<Razzen> Yeah that's a good point.

<Viktor> I think Viktor would object to playing himself

<Viktor> Considering what he went through at the time…

<Razzen> Fair enough.

<Viktor> It's kinda a one-in-a-life-time thing to enact, even if only miming it

<HollyhockGod> The Voice of the Light tells Ennui to use his power for the benefit of Creation and to put others first.

<HollyhockGod> The Voice of the Dark tells him that he can't let the needs of others interfere with his personal growth.

<Razzen> BTW I put a Lesser Creation of Sorrow into writing this so it's extra-sad.

<Viktor> Viktor would be fine with playing any other part

<Viktor> just not his own

<Viktor> Kinda reminiscent of his life XD

<HollyhockGod> So the Light begins the lyric annunciation of the seven Virtues that the Celestial Imperators list as the basic components of moral life.

<Laurelynne> No need, Brother. I have my players here, this is what they exist to do.

<HollyhockGod> It's similar to the Invocation of the Muses.

<HollyhockGod> Justice is the element of appropriateness; that in every situation every individual receives his due.

<HollyhockGod> Temperance is the element of self-control; that each of the elements that makes up the soul is focused with one will.

<HollyhockGod> Fortitude is personal strength; that the course set by the will may not be confused by weakness or fear.

<HollyhockGod> Prudence is the element of wisdom; that gives a plan by which the will achieves its goals.

<HollyhockGod> Faith is the element of trust in others; because Creation is a unified whole, where each individual Estate receives its strength from every other.

<HollyhockGod> Hope is the strength of purpose that can continue under any odds; because Nobility defies the impossible.

<HollyhockGod> Love, the foremost virtue of the Light, is the power to put others first; because nothing is worth having if all you have is yourself.

<HollyhockGod> Such is the Song of the Light.

<HollyhockGod> The Song of the Dark is different, and less structured.

<HollyhockGod> The Dark Invocation has more to do with personal apotheosis, at the expense of all the systems around the individual.

<HollyhockGod> Hence, the destruction of humanity, which gave birth to the Nobles, is an essential part of Nobility.

<HollyhockGod> While humanity lives, the Dark cannot grow.l

<HollyhockGod> This actor doesn't bother to list the sins individually, but he lauds them as marks of refusal to accomodate oneself to others.

<HollyhockGod> And… there's a problem.

<HollyhockGod> You all pick up on it more or less at the same time, since you're paying attention.

<HollyhockGod> The glowing orbs that appeared in the Halls of Fate appear again, surrounding the central figure of Ennui.

<HollyhockGod> But this time, rather than plain light, they're crackling with unpleasant black electricity.

<HollyhockGod> The figure of Ennui begins to fuzz into static.

<HollyhockGod> Actions?

<Viktor> This is the person playing the former Ennui, correct?

<Laurelynne> I'm wearing Dona's body, and as her I come out from backstage and say:

<Erwin> I suppose Erwin stands up and wonders what's going on.

<Laurelynne> "Cut, cut, cut! Who cued the black orbs?!"

<HollyhockGod> Anything else?

<Viktor> Viktor takes notice as well, I suppose.

<Viktor> Stands up and all that.

<Razzen> Wait, if I do a miraculous action will it be obvious?

<Razzen> I mean a divination.

<HollyhockGod> No.

<Razzen> (Laurel doesn't know about these yet so she'll have to find out herself)

<HollyhockGod> Did nobody mention to her on the way in?

<HollyhockGod> Anyway, what are you divining for?

<Edith> I thought it would have been common sense

<Razzen> She's been backstage the whole time except to make a brief introduction before the play began so I doubt it.

<Laurelynne> I'm wondering whether there's any pain or sorrow that these things are looking for, or feeling.

<HollyhockGod> The two Voices are just confused.

<Laurelynne> Voices?

<HollyhockGod> The two actors doing the shoulder-deviling.

<Laurelynne> I didn't mean them, I meant the orbs.

<HollyhockGod> Your divination slides off.

<HollyhockGod> No reading.

<Razzen> Oh dear.

<HollyhockGod> The burst of static inside the orb cloud begins to clear, and the figure that emerges is very different from the dignified tragedian who played Ennui.

<HollyhockGod> This is a tall man, exceedingly brawny, with long yellow hair, glasses, and black eyes full of stars, at least as far as you can see them in this cloudy image.

<Razzen> Black eyes full of stars. Oshi-

<HollyhockGod> He addresses the audience.

<Erwin> Well first it was a kid, and now this?

<HollyhockGod> This seems different, though.

<HollyhockGod> The other orb cloud responded to Edith's miracles, but this one seems to have immunity.

<Edith> What's the thing I caught earlier doing?

<HollyhockGod> "As you have seen, these are the values that Creation is built upon; love, wrath, hope, emptiness, faith, and solitude. The joys of Creation and it's tragedies."

<HollyhockGod> It's in your pocket. No reaction.

<HollyhockGod> The energies in the orb you caught has more or less dispersed by now; it's not holding into an orb form any longer.

<Edith> Ah

<HollyhockGod> More or less a misty fog of teenaged aspirations.

<HollyhockGod> "From these building blocks, you forge the lives and souls of everything that lives, whether for your pleasure or your duty."

<HollyhockGod> "I am here, and I have come to destroy these things."

<HollyhockGod> "And with that announcement, I shall bid you farewell. The game begins!"

<HollyhockGod> He's fuzzing out, again.

<Erwin> Looks like somebody called me out.

<TheAntiPiro> Al and his cup of coffee are missing out on a lot of fun.

<Viktor> Damn. I would've basically yelled to Edith to kill it. With MIND BULLETS.

<HollyhockGod> Yeah, it's nice that your play suddenly turned into an Excrucian declaration of hostilities.

<Edith> If it's immune to miracles, the best I can do is throw something at it in thrustration

<Razzen> Someone want to do something before he's gone?

<HollyhockGod> Immunity to direct miracles isn't the same as immunity to miracles.

<Edith> *frustration

<TheAntiPiro> IE: The stage could suddenly collapse inwards on the guy if you applied some creativity.

<Laurelynne> "How inconsiderate. No appreciation for beauty, that one."

<Razzen> I'm not really offensive-minded.

<Erwin> I'm not sure that's worth it.

<Edith> Um, I can't tie it down because it's made out of energy

<Viktor> So a major destruction of realm still wouldn't've killed it?

<Razzen> You are a Tempest, you can do whatever you want.

<Erwin> I think the excrucian would be ready for that.

<Viktor> Well, then she could just destroy the fact that it's energy, maybe. Turn it corporeal.

<OShuva> Ah! Would a Creation of Imprisonment or Sealing do it?

<Razzen> I sure would like to know what its game is.

<Razzen> So is it gone now?

<Viktor> Screwing with us until we are too disordered to fight, I would guess

<HollyhockGod> I'm giving you some time to decide what to do.

<Erwin> I don't think there's much I can do about it.

<Erwin> Seeing how it isn't physical…yet.

<HollyhockGod> You can't directly target it's corporeality or destroy it, but you could create a seal.

<Viktor> I guess making it's location extremely un-boring (obvious) through a lesser change wouldn't work?

<HollyhockGod> I don't think Viktor can do that, no.

<Edith> If nobody can think of anything else, I throw a major creation of binding, binding it to anything corporeal that's at hand

<HollyhockGod> Okay.

<Razzen> Penetration.

<Edith> Dammit

<HollyhockGod> Edith spends 2 RMPs to create a spell of sealing, that rips through the orb cloud, tears it out of the actor, and sticks on…

<HollyhockGod> I don't know…

<Viktor> The stage?

<HollyhockGod> One of the curtains?

<Razzen> Sure.

<HollyhockGod> The curtain begins shimmering and changing colors and fabric styles, but it can't escape.

<HollyhockGod> Eventually it settles down after turning into spun-sugar.

<HollyhockGod> The orbs continue spinning around and around the curtains, but the black lightning has left them.

<HollyhockGod> The guests are all talking excitedly amongst themselves.

<HollyhockGod> I hope they don't think this was part of the script.

<Edith> Lesser divination, the orbs are just hopes now, right?

<HollyhockGod> Yes, direct targeting now works.

<HollyhockGod> They're the same kind of orbs from the earlier manifestation.

<HollyhockGod> They take shape from the wishes of mortals and alter reality to suit them.

<HollyhockGod> Further investigation might prove fruitful.

<Laurelynne> That's what I'm here for.

<Erwin> I suppose I apologize profusely to the crowd for the interruption.

<Edith> Right, up onto the stage, I suppose

<HollyhockGod> What explanation are you making?

<Laurelynne> Unfortunately I have to use 1 AMP to use the Sight, which I do while performing the Witch Hunt Rite and spending 4 SMPs.

<Erwin> Difficulties with the pyrotechnics..

<Laurelynne> So I can see through up to eight levels of MPs.

<Erwin> ?

<HollyhockGod> The Sight is level 0.

<Razzen> I know but it costs me an MP to use Aspect miracles.

<HollyhockGod> I guess that's true.

<HollyhockGod> I think you need to spend a DMP to do magical scanning.

<HollyhockGod> That kind of looking for miracles is a Greater Divination.

<Razzen> Oh it is?

<Razzen> Of course I can spend SMPs in place of that.

<HollyhockGod> Yes, and you enhance that basic divination with the witch hunt rite.

<HollyhockGod> So you only need to spend one SMP and one DMP.

<HollyhockGod> The Witch Hunt Rite subtracts your Spirit from the difficulty the Auctoritas adds to spotting miracles.

<Razzen> Okay. So by spending the SMP that means I can penetrate an Inferno's auctoritas for this?

<HollyhockGod> Anyway, it looks like the orb cloud was interfered with from the outside by some force.

<HollyhockGod> No, I don't think you need to, but I can check.

<Razzen> The rules for this have always been a little fuzzy for me.

<HollyhockGod> Either way, the basic divination works for you.

<HollyhockGod> Some unknown malefic force altered the already bothersome orbs to make them display this message.

<Razzen> Can it tell me what sort of outside force, or from where?

<Razzen> I see.

<HollyhockGod> Only that it's opposed to you.

<HollyhockGod> What are you saying to the guests?

<TheAntiPiro> They could just blame it on Al.

<TheAntiPiro> And the loom.

<Laurelynne> I'm not saying anything, I'm going over to Edith right now to tell her what I saw, and that obviously this wasn't part of the play so the guests should be informed of that.

<HollyhockGod> Oh, I see, the WHR subtracts your Spirit from the miracle level needed to detect trace miracles.

<HollyhockGod> So you can do it as a level 1 with that.

<Razzen> So I just had to spend the MP for being able to use the Sight?

<Edith> In return, I tell Laurel about what happened at the looms and how hard it is to reach her

<Razzen> Oh nevermind, I was using the Level 5 Domain version.

<Razzen> So one DMP.

<Laurelynne> "What do you think, Sister?"

<HollyhockGod> Several guests are winding their way towards the stage to look things over themselves, while the others are gossiping away.

<HollyhockGod> Namely, Fine, Rhys, and a Guised Ancagallon are inspecting the curtains.

<Edith> "Shall we question our messenger, sister?"

<Razzen> BTW, what happened to the actor playing the former Ennui? Dead?

<Laurelynne> "Please do."

<HollyhockGod> No, he's just wondering what's going on.

<Laurelynne> Oh very good. I'll go over to my players and herd them offstage, leaving Edith to deal with this. ;)

<Edith> Oh thanks

<HollyhockGod> Fine is poking at things.

<Viktor> Viktor is calmly and politely telling her not to poke things, since they are too often poked and require no more poking at the moment.

<Razzen> Uh oh.

<Edith> Uh oh?

<Erwin> I can't imagine this will end well.

<HollyhockGod> "This is nothing less than a declaration of oncoming hostilities. This Excrucian has announced an intention to attack the Estates related to moral principles! How specific, yet unfortunately broad."

<HollyhockGod> "That means at least fourteen Estates involved, and that's assuming we believe a word he said."

<Erwin> "Aren't Excrucians always doing that?"

<Edith> "Then we will have to defend until the onslaught stops. That is why we are here, after all."

<Viktor> "Indeed. As such we should all coordinate our efforts to remediate the situation."

<Edith> "We will indeed. Won't we, Mr. Messenger?"

<HollyhockGod> Rhys points out, "There aren't many steps we can take until we have some idea of what he plans to do."

<HollyhockGod> "He hasn't really told us anything."

<HollyhockGod> Fine adds "Except that he can enter this Chancel with impunity."

<HollyhockGod> "Pointless bluster!" Ancagallon roars. "He can come to me if he dares, and I'll make an end of him. Beyond that, this means nothing."

<Viktor> As a note, Viktor checks if his estate is particularly endangered by this occurance by the means of an estate-driven divination, level 0

<Erwin> Erwin does likewise.

<Edith> Heeh, he actually named Hope

<HollyhockGod> Nothing is crying out to you at this time.

<Laurelynne> After getting the players out of there I come back on stage and apologise to the distinguished guests for that interruption to the show.

<Edith> "I would daresay that he came in through some gaping hole some people made in our little pocket dimension."

<Edith> Might not be true, but it's the best snap I can think of to a demigod

<Erwin> "I suppose I could go looking around."

<HollyhockGod> "If it's not too much trouble," says Fine.

<Viktor> Should someone try the Rite of Passage to see if there are any holes in the chancel?

<Viktor> Or does it not work like that?

<Laurelynne> "What a pitiful farewell to Boredom, having such a terribly exciting disturbance happen."

<HollyhockGod> There don't seem to be any major holes, but there are plenty of sea gates.

<Viktor> "A beautiful irony on the intruder's part, one he most likely will regret."

<HollyhockGod> So, is the party more or less over, then?

<Laurelynne> Seems so. I'm going to get some stage hands to clean up the mess with the curtains and take my leave.

<Edith> What /did/ I get to stick to the curtains, anyway?

<Laurelynne> Then do a Domain 0 divination to see if anything's wrong with my Estate.

<Erwin> I suppose Erwin leads the guests to the exit.

<HollyhockGod> Sorrow reports no problems.

<HollyhockGod> Another cloud of hopeful orbs is stuck into the curtains.

<HollyhockGod> The Excrucian influence has dissipated.

<Edith> Dammit

<HollyhockGod> We can skip past sending everyone off.

<HollyhockGod> Rhys hopes that he'll be called in to fight if any of the virtues are threatened. Fine nods her approval as well.

<Edith> Since everyone else is doing it, Level 0 Divination on Hope

<HollyhockGod> Ancagallon barely gives you a nod as he flies off.

<HollyhockGod> No problems there.

<Viktor> Do a level 0 divination on Realm?

<HollyhockGod> Same there

<Viktor> hell, I can do it

<Viktor> ah

<HollyhockGod> So, care to take a look at the orb cloud in closer detail.

<HollyhockGod> ?

<OShuva> Might as well

<Edith> I mean, sure

<Erwin> I'll go ahead and take a look at the orbs physically, anything different or eye-catching.

<HollyhockGod> Major Divinations show you that while they are primarily formed from hopeful energy from the bottom of the well, they're bound into form by dark energy specifically opposed to the Chancel fabric.

<HollyhockGod> That is to say, this is the manifestation of a Bane.

<Edith> I /thought/ so

<Viktor> So perhaps we should look into the well?

<Edith> It was okay last time I looked, but throw a Major DIvination at it anyway

<HollyhockGod> It looks like the dark energy motivates the formless hopes to take shape and then attempts to replace the order ofthe Chancel reality with whatever shapes it can pick up.

<Laurelynne> That's strange because the Witch Hunt Rite indicated that the opposing force was coming from outside.

<HollyhockGod> The Well is about the same as always.

<Edith> Tada!

<Viktor> I meant maybe physically take a look

<Viktor> It might be resistant to such things somehow

<HollyhockGod> But that time it had the funky black lightning in it somehow.

<Laurelynne> So one of our Banes is in cahoots with an Excrucian?

<HollyhockGod> Whereas this is just a standard manifestation of Baneful power, if such a word applies to Banes.

<HollyhockGod> Or the Excrucian just twisted it into a form that suited him.

<Laurelynne> Or that, yeah.

<HollyhockGod> I mean, it's already a thing that takes shape from other people.

<HollyhockGod> Using it to deliver a message wouldn't be hard.

<HollyhockGod> But it means that he's been observing your Chancel carefully.

<Laurelynne> Indeed.

<HollyhockGod> All you really have on him is a statement of intention and a picture.

<Laurelynne> Anyone ever seen that guy before?

<Viktor> His next target must be my wonderful spiteful crabs! The indignation…

<HollyhockGod> Do you have a reference guide to Excrucians?

<HollyhockGod> There must be some kind of data that Nobles pool about various Dark Horsemen and their powers and methods.

<Erwin> Are there any published?

<Laurelynne> No I mean we should canvass the chancelfolk with his description; if he's been watching us, maybe someone's seen him.

<Laurelynne> But I guess we could do that, too.

<Edith> Creator, we need telecommunications in this place

<Razzen> Make it so.

<HollyhockGod> A good plan.

<HollyhockGod> Anything else you want to do?

<Laurelynne> Probably do the same from the outside as well.

<Laurelynne> Where is our island anyway? I mean, when we leave what does it open out into?

<Razzen> That was meant to be ooc.

<HollyhockGod> It's off the coast of England.

<Razzen> Which side?

<Viktor> I could make anything not pertaining to our search for the excrucian extremely boring, but I suppose that would have dangerous after affects

<Erwin> It'd take a while to get to people I know from there.

<HollyhockGod> Where would you like?

<OShuva> Somewhere viciously rocky suits us, I think

<OShuva> Cornwall?

<Razzen> That seems suitable.


<OShuva> Sorry, I just immediately thought of it

<Razzen> So an island between England and Ireland then?

<HollyhockGod> Sounds fine.

<OShuva> I concur

<HollyhockGod> I guess that about wraps up our Thursday story.

<HollyhockGod> Questions, comments, and concerns?

<Erwin> Alright.

<Razzen> Good deal. I'm going to have Laurel step into another anchor on the outside and do some investigating, and probably drag one of you along with her.

<Erwin> Hopefully there'll be a little more for Erwin to do.

<HollyhockGod> We need some things to beat up.

<Razzen> I'll take that as volunteering. :)

<HollyhockGod> Or social-monster.

<HollyhockGod> The social power of Aspect is often neglected.

<Razzen> Too many guests I'm thinking.

<Razzen> But I like the orbs and the chancel randomness.

<Viktor> I'm just wondering how I can bore problems out of being problems.

<HollyhockGod> True, what really should have happened is that about six different miracles should have come out of the audience and plowed the stage flat.

<HollyhockGod> Anyway, I bestow upon each of you a character point.

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