Comics by Shaenon II

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 Post subject: Mei's Path
PostPosted: Sat Jun 25, 2011 7:54 pm 
Heh heh heh.
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Location: Behind you
"A secret is undone / when the nine become one."

Jane Narbon: I'm ready to continue whenever you are.
Prof Zobot: *Makes Mei's red contacts vanish in a puff of red smoke* I'm ready. Ok... previously, on Exalted...
Prof Zobot: Desus and Mei were floating, confused, in a timeless void!
Prof Zobot: Er... wait, that's just my fanfic
Jane Narbon: Mei: Erm.
Prof Zobot: Anyways, prevoiusly on Exalted...
Prof Zobot: Mei had just Jacked in to the Manse, and was now in a large field of green tall grass...somehow...
Prof Zobot: Ok... so what are you doing first?
Jane Narbon: Well, what is there to do, exactly?
Prof Zobot: Looking around, there's approximately three things of note in the distance. A large cave, a large tower, and a Village.
Jane Narbon: Describe them.
Jane Narbon: (Also: Music suggestion!
Jane Narbon: (Er, whoops, wrong music. )
Prof Zobot: ...agreed.
Prof Zobot: Dangit, now I wanna play this game again. Programming was fun
Prof Zobot: REGARDLESS...
Prof Zobot: The CAVE is INTIMIDATING. A trail of dark SMOKE leaks out of it, and it rises out of the ground, surrounded by FOREST PLANTS. It's clear that something DANGEROUS dwells there, but also possibly something valuable.
Prof Zobot: Er, *But also possibly something VALUABLE*
Jane Narbon: [snicker]
Prof Zobot: The Tower is FORTIFIED. It appears to be a bastoin of STRENGTH and CIVILIZATION, but also possibly of inner CORRUPTION beneaht the veneer of ORDER. PEOPLE clearly live there.
Prof Zobot: Brb
Prof Zobot: Back
Prof Zobot: Anyways... the Village is TRANQUIL. A place where you can find SUPPLIES, and probably INFORMATION. It's a place with a lot of HISTORY and a bit of MYTH.
Jane Narbon: If Mei were to go into the FORTIFIED TOWER, would she discover FORTIFIED VITAMINS?
Prof Zobot: The people there are HUMBLE, but SENSIBLE.
Prof Zobot: You just might
Jane Narbon: Do I have to pick one? Or will I get the chance to experience all three?
Prof Zobot: You have no idea.
Jane Narbon: And how's the whole 'time inside' thing?
Prof Zobot: Again, you don't really know. That might have been something worth asking
Prof Zobot: >:::: )
Jane Narbon: Mei: [to the universe] What is the rate of time passing in here in relation to the rate of time passing in the real world?
Jane Narbon: (hey, 'sworth a shot)
Prof Zobot: Nothing happens. Except a duck flies past you overhead
Jane Narbon: Mei'll head... for the village.
Jane Narbon: Z?
Prof Zobot: Ok... the Villiage... (Sorry, I was trying to think of how I should do this)
Jane Narbon: (Music! )
Prof Zobot: ...YES.
Prof Zobot: The village is a hub of activity, none of it relevant. There's a lot of people, working everywhere, hustling and bustling, harvesting apples, other crops, and even dealing with Livestock
Prof Zobot: Before we go on, Mei needs to make a perceptoin + wits check
Jane Narbon: They have a stock market?
Jane Narbon: I bet they have a stalk market.
Jane Narbon: Per+Wits? That's two Attributes... is that right?
Prof Zobot: Err... Wits + Awareness then
Jane Narbon: "1,3,2,8,4, 1,9   (2 successes)"
Jane Narbon: [Mei: [playing with one of those paddle-ball toys]]
Jane Narbon: [Mei: Hey, is this my idle animation? Cool! ...-ish. I think I need to work up a more epic one.]
Jane Narbon: [Mei: [concentrates
Jane Narbon: ]
Jane Narbon: ]
Jane Narbon: [Mei: [now playing with a flaming pokéball] That's more like it.]
Prof Zobot: Ok... anyways... for a brief moment, Mei almost realizes something. These aren't people, they're-, and the houses are- and that means that- but then, she loses it. Whatever it was, it's gone now
Jane Narbon: Mei: ???????????
Jane Narbon: Anything of import in the village?
Prof Zobot: Well, make an investigation + manipulation check
Jane Narbon: "9,3,6,4,8, 10   (4 successes)"
Jane Narbon: [Mei: ....perhaps I should take up magic tricks.]
Jane Narbon: [Mei: Oh, wait... that's Performance. I'm already versed therein. [grins]]
Prof Zobot: Ok. Mei can somehow manage the villiage to find out what's here.... this village possesses a legendary weapon, a sword in the stone, embedded at the center of town in a garden. It's supposed to be used by a great HERO to slay the DRAGON. There's also a number of RARE TREASURES for sale in the GENERAL STORE. And there's a rumor or two she can find out. Apparently the King of the TOWER and the DRAGON have had great conflicts with each other.
Prof Zobot: Yup!
Jane Narbon: (I think I have a good idea as to what the DRAGON is by now.)
Jane Narbon: What RARE TREASURES?
Jane Narbon: The ESSENCE CANNON again? That is becoming like a certain DOORKNOB in another game, or the whole business with the BUNNY.
Jane Narbon: What are the OTHER THINGS, in DETAIL?
Prof Zobot: What is there to describe? What do you want to know?
Jane Narbon: WELL, any sort of FURTHER DETAIL about what the THREE OTHER ITEMS are and WHAT THEY CAN DO would be APPRECIATED.
Jane Narbon: HECK, any ancillary information about the ESSENCE CANNON would be appreciated AS WELL.
Jane Narbon: Come to think of it, THIS STYLE of COMMUNICATION reminds me of the SPEECH BUBBLES found in COMIC BOOKS.
Prof Zobot: Ah, I see! Fine. I'll stop with the RPG talk
Jane Narbon: DARN. All in all, this style was KINDA FUN.
Jane Narbon: And HILARIOUS as ALL GET OUT.
Jane Narbon: Anyway, back to the game...
Jane Narbon: [Mei: [shuffles a deck of cards, then deals herself a royal flush and an invisible opponent a junk hand] Not a bad card trick, if I do say so myself...]
Prof Zobot: Ok... the Phoenix Egg is seemingly useless, but has unfulfilled potential. The Glowing Orb is a tool of magic that is also a source of energy. The Essence Cannon is a weapon of destruction with enormaous capabilities, but is also draining.
Prof Zobot: The Craftsman's Tools are very useful in a variety of circumstances, and are just in general helpful.
Prof Zobot: And the Bunny is in the Box, and is thus unavailable to mei at this time
Prof Zobot: brb, bio
Prof Zobot: (Mei can possibly AFFORD two of the four artifacts)
Jane Narbon: Pass on the cannon.
Jane Narbon: Two of the remaining three, huh?
Jane Narbon: {GTG - dinner. will mull it over.}
Jane Narbon: Decided.
Jane Narbon: Tools and Egg.
Jane Narbon: See you after dinner!
Prof Zobot: Sure
Prof Zobot: Ok. As Mei gets the Tools, she gains 2 dots that she can spend on any Ability, or divide them up.
Jane Narbon: Are these temporary or permanent?
Jane Narbon: (back)
Prof Zobot: You don't know
Prof Zobot: The Egg, meanwhile, does apparently nothing
Jane Narbon: Lack of surprise.
Prof Zobot: Fair enough. What is Mei doing now?
Jane Narbon: About the sword in the stone in the garden... time to examine that.
Prof Zobot: Ok... the air has a curious stillness to it as you enter the garden glade where the sword in the stone rests.
Prof Zobot: LEGEND says that whoever draws the SWORD IN THE STONE will gain the STRENGTH of the WORLD and be able to use it against the abominable DRAGON
Jane Narbon: Let's look at the stone. Is there anything unusual about the way the sword is set up?
Prof Zobot: Make a wits + awareness or perception , whichever one is an ability again
Jane Narbon: Wits+Awareness it is, then.
Jane Narbon: "9,3,6,4,8, 10   (4 successes)"
Jane Narbon: Er, whoops. That's an old roll.
Jane Narbon: "7,1,10,4,6, 3,6   (3 successes)"
Prof Zobot: Ah... ok. Mei can realize it, then
Prof Zobot: This whole Sword in the Stone thing is a setup.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Well, duh. I suspected it as much.
Jane Narbon: How is the setup set up?
Prof Zobot: The entire TOWN is a metaphor for an electrical circuit exchanging information via Essence conduits.
Jane Narbon: Ahhhhhh.
Jane Narbon: Which means...?
Prof Zobot: The people are all electrical signals, the houses are locations in a circuit, and so forth.
Jane Narbon: The DRAGON is the automated systems, aren't they?
Prof Zobot: The SWORD is a poweful anti-viral program in a SECURED file
Jane Narbon: Ah, I get it. And the security?
Prof Zobot: A File that the system's been made to think doesn't exist.
Prof Zobot: Essentially the Sword can't be retrieved because the system doesn't acknowledge that the SWORD is in the nonexistant stone
Jane Narbon: O... kay. What does this mean for Mei, in practical terms?
Jane Narbon: Is this a work-this-out-now puzzle, or a come-back-later puzzle?
Prof Zobot: It means to get the sword, she has to trick the computer into thinking that the file's there.
Prof Zobot: Normally the Sword can't be drawn, because you have to manipul8te your surroundings.
Prof Zobot: I.E: The town. You have to trick the town
Jane Narbon: Hmmm.
Jane Narbon: What else is in the garden, around the 'stone'?
Prof Zobot: Good question.
Prof Zobot: Well, there stone is encircled by a ring of trees and another smaller ring of bushes, and the entire thing is very flooded with flowers of various sorts
Prof Zobot: There's an odd hush in the air
Jane Narbon: Any gravel? Stones on the ground?
Prof Zobot: Yes.
Jane Narbon: Mei'll take some gravel and pack it around and/or in the area where the stone is now.
Jane Narbon: Then try to pull out the sword.
Jane Narbon: (The idea being, to make an outer shell around the stone)
Prof Zobot: Ok, make a Manipulation + Charisma check
Prof Zobot: Err... Manipulation + Performance
Jane Narbon: "6,6,6,4,9, 9,9,4   (3 successes)"
Jane Narbon: (What are Jan and Fuzzy doing, out of curiosity?)
Prof Zobot: Epic battlez
Jane Narbon: With whomz?
Prof Zobot: Roadbump bad guys
Jane Narbon: Ah.
Prof Zobot: Ok... well... that's enough. With a resounding sound the sword is pulled up into the air.
Jane Narbon: DUN DUN DUN DUNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN {zelda item get theme}
Prof Zobot: Out of the obviously existing stone pumpkin, and held in the air above Mei's head
Jane Narbon: Incidentally, since Mei can now see the metaphor, what do the TOWER and the DRAGON represent?
Prof Zobot: The sword allows you to directly attack entities in this world at either their VIRTUE RESERVES, or their DETERMINATION
Prof Zobot: The TOWER represents the regoin of the Manse that is not under the main system's direct control
Prof Zobot: The CAVE represents the Main systems' primary control systems.
Jane Narbon: I.... see.
Jane Narbon: Well then.
Prof Zobot: The TOWN represents typical subroutines and processes that manage the facility itself
Jane Narbon: Next stop, the FORTIFIED VITAMINS— er, the TOWER.
Jane Narbon: Mei: (to herself) know, I could probably rig a fake sword in the stone... but what would I do with it then?
Prof Zobot: ...harvest money from people trying to prove their royalty until a woman named Mango ruins your racket?
Jane Narbon: Could work.
Jane Narbon: I love that comic, by the way.
Prof Zobot: Mango is like a wrecking ball in people's schemes.
Jane Narbon: Which is kinda why I prefer Lemon and Lime. Or maybe Blueberry ^^
Jane Narbon: Seriously, I can't help but wonder if Mango's going to bust open the Big Secret eventually...
Jane Narbon: Which would be interesting.
Jane Narbon: Anyway! Back to the game.
Prof Zobot: Yes!
Jane Narbon: You think she will?
Jane Narbon: Oh. You mean, the game.
Prof Zobot: I think it's almost inevitable.
Prof Zobot: Anyways... at the tower, two BURLY SOLDIERS stand outside the IRON GATES. They glare at you. "Set.stance=preventative." One of them grunts.
Jane Narbon: Mei: You need to let me through, for I am the hero you seek! I am in search of the mystic SN and AE and WR.
Jane Narbon: Mei: [shows the sword]
Jane Narbon: (Incidentally, I've been playing The Fool's Errand lately. Can you tell?)
Prof Zobot: (Hee!)
Prof Zobot: The Guards cross their spears against the door, barring entry.
Prof Zobot: Make a manipulation + presence check
Jane Narbon: 8,6,4,10,6, 1,4   (3 successes)
Prof Zobot: Nope. they won't open the doors for you
Jane Narbon: Hmm.
Jane Narbon: Mei: For whom do the doors open?
Jane Narbon: [@ the guards]
Prof Zobot: "The.King.and.his.advisors"
Jane Narbon: Mei: How do you know I'm not an advisor?
Prof Zobot: "Set Status=Skeptical"
Jane Narbon: Mei: Is there anything about me that makes you so? Or are you just picking on me because I'm short for my age... [gives the guard the puppy-dog eyes] I just got made advisor, after all...
Jane Narbon: (Should I be adding one die to these for L1 stunts, or what?)
Jane Narbon: (Or not, I meant to say.)
Prof Zobot: Make a manipulation + performance chekc again
Jane Narbon: 7,4,10,8,9, 4,8,5   (6 successes)
Prof Zobot: "Checksum Error... security lowering..." The gates begin to slide open, and the spears uncross.
Jane Narbon: And in we go.
Jane Narbon: (By the way, Z, what's the latest you can stay up? I might have to go AFK for a few minutes, and don't want the session to end...)
Prof Zobot: (I'm staying up until we complete this tongiht. It's almost done)
Jane Narbon: (Eh?! I thought Mei was going to go unto the dragon and flatten it.)
Jane Narbon: Anyway, what's in the tower?
Prof Zobot: (Sorry. I'm just quickly wrapping up Jans story and then I'm all yours. One sec)
Jane Narbon: (I'll be AFK for about 10 minutes. Hang on!)
Prof Zobot: (Ok)
Jane Narbon: 'mback!
Prof Zobot: Yay!
Jane Narbon: Anyway: The tower.
Prof Zobot: Yes. Now, the tower...
Prof Zobot: There's really no need for that. The tower is just an extension of my subroutines, after all. And I see no reaosn not to come to you..
Jane Narbon: Mei: WHO. SAID. THAT.
Prof Zobot: The doors to the tower slide open and a man composed of Shining light steps out. He appears as if an angel, or perhaps an energy being, save for an enormous crown, which wreathes his head.
Prof Zobot: You rang?
Jane Narbon: Mei: Nice to meet you! I'm Mei.... er, and you are?
Prof Zobot: I am the Golden Shield of the Creator, the KING within this virtual fantasy realm, of which you are merely an 8-bit entity, and the overseer of the Safe Region of the Manse of Autocthon.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Wait, why were you inside the tower? The 'guards' only let you and/or your advisors through. And if you're already in there—
Prof Zobot: "The Tower" as you see it is merely an extension of the division between the corrupted Core Systems and the region I am keeping safe for the return of our Creator.
Prof Zobot: It's only natural that I would remain inside it, as such.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Am I in the corrupted bit, or the safe bit?
Prof Zobot: As an outside influence, you are in the corrupted bit. And I would advise you to leave rather quickly. Your integrity is going to begin breaking down soon
Jane Narbon: Mei: ! How soon?
Prof Zobot: I don't know for sure, it's hard to evaluate how strong your personal essence resivoir is, since you probably don't even HAVE internal subsystems to regulate that.
Prof Zobot: The Manse didn't tell you that you would be powering your projection in here wtih your own personal essence, did she?
Jane Narbon: Mei: ...she must have failed to mention it. Can the corrupted bit be fixed? Or, alternately, excised? Erm, not me, the rest of it.
Prof Zobot: The discrepency is academic. From my perspective, you ALL are part of the corruption. Something caused the Manses systems to begin experiencing errors and shifts in behavior and guiding directives. The Voidtaint was not present prior to the invasion of the Manse, so logic dictates that you mortals brought it with you.
Prof Zobot: I am waiting for the Great Maker to return to his kingdom and set things right, as such
Jane Narbon: Mei: Yeah, about that. I'm supposed to shut the Manse's higher-level systems down? According to the projection that got me in here in the first place?
Jane Narbon: Mei: Is this a good idea? Or what should I do? Besides leave.
Prof Zobot: Ah. She probably lied to you. Or maybe not. She's hard to understand because her behavior seems to contridict itself.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Mortals are like that.
Prof Zobot: As near as I can tell, she's either sincere and wants you to kill her, or she's trying to remove your mental defenses by draining your power away so you can be an effective empty vessel for her to recopy her data banks onto.
Prof Zobot: Perhaps both.
Jane Narbon: Mei: So... if I did want to shut it down, I'd go gunning for the dragon?
Prof Zobot: That is correct. Slaying the Dragon is the only metaphorical way to end this simulation and delete the God of this Manse who directs the core systems of this Manse
Jane Narbon: Mei: What are my other options?
Jane Narbon: Mei: Can't I just... wake up?
Prof Zobot: Now that you're in the system? She dictates whether you can enter or exit. I could probably get you out through my control over these systems, but not in your original body.
Jane Narbon: Mei: In what, then?
Prof Zobot: I would have to find something else to upload you into.
Prof Zobot: But that would likely require me to disengage from the systems to craft a body of some sort anyway.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Ah. By the way... [shows him the sword] Will you be needing this? I pulled it out of a nonexistent stone.
Prof Zobot: I shouldn't think so. I put it there.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Well. Off I go to slay the dragon, then...— oh, right. [shows him the Egg] Any info about this?
Prof Zobot: Ah. That. Well, it's useless here. But if you manage to bring it back with you, it might be useful.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Ah. And... how do I bring things back?
Prof Zobot: You survive
Jane Narbon: Mei: . . . right. Got it.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Any last advice before I go to shut this thing down?
Prof Zobot: Yes. I should hurry if I were you. You've wasted a lot of time so far and he's starting to get impatient.
Jane Narbon: Mei: 'He'?
Jane Narbon: Mei: [turning to head off]
Jane Narbon: Mei: Wait, who could— [realizes who is most likely waiting for her outside in the real world] Ho-ly SH#%
Prof Zobot: And now, if it's all the same to you, I'm going to cede the narrative back to the metaphysical voice that guides you wherever you go and resume my mysterious behavior now. Good bye.
Jane Narbon: Mei: [runs for the CAVE, at full blast]
Prof Zobot: Ok... make an Integrity + Willpower check
Jane Narbon: 4,7,4,10,3, 8,2,6,8   (5 successes)
Prof Zobot: Right. You only lose 1 point of Integrity. (Non-permanently, it will be restored if you get out of the system)
Prof Zobot: (Suggested Music:
Prof Zobot: Ok... as you enter the Cave. you hear terrible vibrations coming from inside. As if something scary is waking upo
Prof Zobot: The Cave is MUGGY and IMPOSING.
Prof Zobot: (One sec, brb)
Jane Narbon: Also:
Prof Zobot: Ok. Back.
Prof Zobot: In any event... as you enter the center of the cave, you see an extremely distuirbing sight
Prof Zobot: Ini, standing there, one whole half of her body looking normal, the other half looking... blackened. Burnt to a crisp. Sitting there.
Prof Zobot: "Took you long enough."
Jane Narbon: Mei: Hi!
Jane Narbon: Mei: Ummmmmm.... aren't you supposed to be a dragon?
Prof Zobot: Ini: Perhaps. But I've never prefered that form. And everything here is according to my will.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Yeah, about that... [lifts the sword]
Prof Zobot: At this, she nods and claps her hands. Four spheres appear around her, crackling with energy, and she vanishs.
Prof Zobot: Ok, roll join battles
Prof Zobot: Jane?
Jane Narbon: Hang on.
Jane Narbon: I'm making a martial art with Demo.
Prof Zobot: Ah
Jane Narbon: 1,6,2,4,6, 8,10   (3 successes)
Jane Narbon: (Dunno what 'initiative' of the dice-roller is for, but it's not this.)
Prof Zobot: ...8... 8 duvvrddrd. zrrp
Jane Narbon: ?
Prof Zobot: Err... sorry. Fingers slipped
Prof Zobot: 8 successes
Jane Narbon: O drr.
Jane Narbon: Er, I see
Prof Zobot: Ok. This battle isn't going to work the way that typical battles go.
Prof Zobot: Any ability + attribute combination can be used as an attack, but...
Prof Zobot: Without the sword, victory wouldn't be possible at all. The sword allows you to attack the Manse's 4 Virtue Reserves directly, which are operating as a sort of shield for it's core programming
Prof Zobot: Stunting is not possible here because in order to attack at all you have to stunt to justify the combination of those ability + attribute combo as an attack against each of the 4 spheres.
Prof Zobot: Defeat all four and attack Ini before she drains all your integrity plus willpower and she is destroyed. Otherwise... it won't end well
Prof Zobot: Any questions?
Jane Narbon: What sort of power do each of the spheres have?
Jane Narbon: Er, health.
Prof Zobot: 1 health level each, but high dodge DV
Jane Narbon: Okeydokey, let's go.
Prof Zobot: Ok, her turn first.
Prof Zobot: The spheres spin around her in a circle, and the Conviction sphere goes flying stright at you. What's your conviction?
Jane Narbon: 3.
Prof Zobot: Ok. She roll 5 dice against a DV of 3.
Prof Zobot: 4 successes.
Jane Narbon: So... what options do I have?
Prof Zobot: well, you can use charms to increase your dodge as normal, or charms that protect you as normal.
Prof Zobot: Soak is derived directly from your willpower score, though
Jane Narbon: So, suppose Inishade gets 4 successes.
Jane Narbon: Wait a sec.
Jane Narbon: Mei's willpower maxes out at 7.
Jane Narbon: She has 4 presently.
Jane Narbon: Doesn't the attack just bounce off?
Prof Zobot: Permanent willpower
Jane Narbon: So, her permanent willpower is 7.
Jane Narbon: Which means her soak is... ?
Prof Zobot: 7
Jane Narbon: So if Ini gets 4 successes...?
Prof Zobot: It reduces to her essence
Jane Narbon: Which is?
Prof Zobot: For the sake of fairness, even though this is supposed to be an aeons old system on one of the most powerful Manses on earth... in the context of this battle, since your sense of self and your core aspects of your personality are what are being attacked and used as defense, her "essence" counts as a 2
Jane Narbon: Wait a sec.
Jane Narbon: Suppose I have a charm that would boost my DV by my performance for the duration of the scene. I can use that when it's my turn, right?
Prof Zobot: Yup
Jane Narbon: Okay, so her Essence is a 2.
Jane Narbon: Where is this going to hurt if this hits?
Prof Zobot: it's taken directly off of your willpower + integrity
Prof Zobot: When both of those hit 0, it's game over
Prof Zobot: ...and it rolled 0 successes
Jane Narbon: ^_^
Prof Zobot: Mei is beaned as if she was hit with a soccer ball to the face. Annoying but not outright painful
Jane Narbon: Okay, Mei's going to try an attack.
Prof Zobot: Ok
Jane Narbon: "Mei hefted the sword, noting the erratic movements of each of the three spheres. Two could play at that game. With a bound, she began zipping around the room, moving left and right in the manner the spheres were dodging her. By the time the spheres realized Mei was getting closer, it was too late, and Mei had dodged right into the Valor one..."
Jane Narbon: {Wits+Dodge}
Prof Zobot: Ok... make your roll
Jane Narbon:
Prof Zobot: Ah, memories...
Jane Narbon: D'oh.
Jane Narbon: 4,1,6,1,1, 6,5,8,1   (1 success)
Prof Zobot: That's a miss!
Jane Narbon: What sort of DVs, anyway?
Prof Zobot: 8 each.
Jane Narbon: O.o
Jane Narbon: How exactly am I ever supposed to land a hit?
Prof Zobot: Possibly play to your strengths? Does Mei have any excellencies?
Jane Narbon: Dodge.
Prof Zobot: Well, what are some of your higher skills?
Jane Narbon: You just saw the maximum.
Jane Narbon: Wits = 4
Jane Narbon: Dodge = 5
Jane Narbon: Martial Arts = 4
Jane Narbon: Manip = 4
Jane Narbon: Perform = 4
Prof Zobot: Ah... ok. Well... this is a very experimental system.
Jane Narbon: I doubt I'm ever going to be able to roll 8 dice thusly, though
Jane Narbon: Unless I am very lucky.
Prof Zobot: Ok, We'll lower the DV down to 6.
Jane Narbon: Might be possible.
Jane Narbon: So, who's next?
Prof Zobot: You again, then her, by the speed of her attack
Jane Narbon: (Hey, I just realized, I muffed the Join Battle roll... I forget I have Secrets of Future Strife in there. Too late now.)
Prof Zobot: Ah, dear....
Jane Narbon: Hey, I have an idea.
Jane Narbon: (I sure hope this works...)
Prof Zobot: Yes?
Jane Narbon: Mei'll cast BLADE OF THE BATTLE MAIDEN,
Jane Narbon: spending 6m to gain 3 dice to her attack pools for the rest of the scene.
Prof Zobot: See? Clever
Prof Zobot: Alright.... her attack now... the Compassion Sphere glows and fires a ray of burning hot Compassion at Mei.
Jane Narbon: This also boosts her DV, by the way.
Jane Narbon: Burning hot—?! What is this, My Little Care Bears?!
Prof Zobot: I gotta keep the attacks at least SOUNDING original...
Prof Zobot: This is, however, unparrayble
Prof Zobot: Err... oh dear... 5 successes.
Prof Zobot: What's Mei's Compassion + DV bonuses?
Prof Zobot: ?
Jane Narbon: 1 sec
Jane Narbon: 2+(3/2) = 3.5 rounds up to 4.
Prof Zobot: ok... so 1
Jane Narbon: Which means Mei's soak eats it.
Jane Narbon: Right?
Changed status to Away: Idle since 2:22 AM (GMT-5) (12:22:19 AM)
Changed status to Online (12:22:22 AM)
Prof Zobot: Down to her essence
Jane Narbon: Ah. Again.
Prof Zobot: Yes
Prof Zobot: 2 successes
Jane Narbon: Erg. :(
Prof Zobot: Ok... well, your next actoin
Jane Narbon: (Just so you know, Mei is at 0 integ, 1 Will!!)
Jane Narbon: I don't suppose there's any way to— pull yourself together or something— to recover health?
Prof Zobot: Well... hm. Gah, this is the problem with coming up with an experimental system. The very first test is always either heniously unbalanced to either the player or the DM.
Jane Narbon: Here's what happened:
Jane Narbon: Mei had 4 TWP to begin with after spending 3 on the journey in.
Jane Narbon: Blade of the Battle Maiden cost 2.
Jane Narbon: The last hit hit one integrity (Mei's last) and one Will.
Jane Narbon: So.... yeah....
Prof Zobot: Er, this is referring to Permanent dots of willpower, not temporary
Jane Narbon: Eh?
Prof Zobot: I should have been more specific. Temporary willpower is only an extension of permanent willpower.
Jane Narbon: Yes. And getting hit drains Integrity and TWP, yes?
Prof Zobot: Er, no. Permanent willpower, not temporary
Jane Narbon: Oh.
Prof Zobot: And again, this is all non-permanent loss. It's like health levels
Jane Narbon: That's... actually a relief! It means I'm not almost dead! Mei still has 6 PWP left!
Prof Zobot: Sorry. I should have been more clear.
Prof Zobot: However, as part of your current action I can choose to allow you to cede your action to recover your willpoewr as if you has rested a day... (Basically, rolling your conviction and recovering that much willpower)
Jane Narbon: PWP, or TWP?
Prof Zobot: PWP.
Jane Narbon: I'll pass for now. Mei'll make another attack.
Jane Narbon: "Mei sank to her knees. 'Alas, I am fading...' she sighed, her hands falling by her sides. The Valor sphere rushed boldly forward to attack... only to discover that Mei had kept one hand on the sword, and was entirely ready for it."
Jane Narbon: {Manip+Perform}
Prof Zobot: Make your roll
Jane Narbon: OH, COME ON!
Jane Narbon: 11 dice...
Jane Narbon: 2,3,7,3,1, 4,5,3,2,3, 2   (1 success)
Prof Zobot: ...ow. I'm sorry
Jane Narbon: There's always next roll. ^^
Jane Narbon: Least Mei didn't botch, anyway.
Prof Zobot: Yeah. And as established, she attacks slow. You get two actoins between her speed 10 one.
Jane Narbon: "Mei decided on a different tactic. Taking careful aim, she lined up her arm and threw the sword at the Valor sphere. It then whirled back into her hand."
Jane Narbon: (Dex+Thrown)
Jane Narbon: 3,9,4,8,6, 1,4,5,2,2, 10   (4 successes)
Jane Narbon: Another miss, looks like.
Prof Zobot: Blargh. I'm losing focus.
Jane Narbon: Hmm.
Prof Zobot: Gah. I'm sorry. we'll finish this tomorrow.
Jane Narbon: How's this going to work, with the main game tomorrow?
Prof Zobot: Ok... at this point I think you've probably earned this. And I did kinda draw it out.
Prof Zobot: As much as I hate to sound like this is a cop-out, I'm out of time and I can't really keep myself awake. And you've passed challenge after challenge anyway.
Jane Narbon: ??
Jane Narbon: Wait a sec, if you're planning to do what I think you are, we could just simulplay it tomorrow—
Prof Zobot: You know, that's actually probably a good idea.
Prof Zobot: Dang it, I've been up since six in the morning. Bad ideas are starting to sound good to me
Jane Narbon: Tell you what.
Jane Narbon: {1} Go to sleep.
Jane Narbon: {2} We'll simulplay it tomorrow.
Jane Narbon: Mei has a part to practice for a play anyway.
Prof Zobot: It works anyway because we won't be starting with Mei
Prof Zobot: ...a Play?
Jane Narbon: Mei: [fishes out her contact lenses from somewhere, then starts reading her script] To right the countless wrongs of our day—
Jane Narbon: Night, Z.
Prof Zobot: You know, I would have figured her as Konshi
Prof Zobot: Sorry about this. Night Jane
Jane Narbon: Night!


Prof Zobot: We're gonna start, if that's ok with you
Jane Narbon: OK, I'm readyz!
Prof Zobot: Anyway, we're a bit short on time and space, sooo
Jane Narbon: Sooo
Prof Zobot: So yes. We're going to resolve Mei's interaction
Prof Zobot: And then, at the end of it, I need a favor.
Jane Narbon: You need a favor?
Jane Narbon: Oh....kay, what is the favor?
Prof Zobot: I need Mei's chatlog posted when we're done
Prof Zobot: But half of it is on my desktop computer, whcih is an hour and a half away from my present location, and the other half is/will be on hre.
Prof Zobot: *Here
Jane Narbon: Oh, okay.
Jane Narbon: That's easy.
Prof Zobot: Do you keep logs?
Jane Narbon: Adium autologs everything.
Prof Zobot: Awesome
Jane Narbon:, ahem. Sorry. Bit of a head cold. >:-)
Prof Zobot: Anyways... Mei was fighting against an insane Ini
Prof Zobot: IniManse: Who'll make the cake when I'm gone?!?
Jane Narbon: Mei: The cake is a lie, Ini.
Prof Zobot: IniManse: Duh. But that's a secret
Prof Zobot: Regardless, as you're fighting with her, you hear something.
Prof Zobot: As you're moving, you hear a voice in the air. That's NOT Ini.

Jane Narbon: By the way, more music!
Jane Narbon:
Prof Zobot: "Hello, is this thing on? Alright... my name is Lucent. I hope you can all hear me."
Jane Narbon: Mei: Oh, Hi Lucent! How's the thaumaturgy going? [innocent voice]
Prof Zobot: "I'm trying to reach a woman who came here... her name is Mei! I have urgent business with her. Will she please come to the Vats as soon as possible? I'm afraid she's keeping her friend waiting."
Jane Narbon: Mei: Who, and what?
Prof Zobot: "For some reason her crying friend thoguht it would be a good idea to hide in an incinerator and won't come out unless Mei comes to get her."
Jane Narbon: Mei: . . . [suddenly suspicious] what does she look like?
Prof Zobot: "I really hope no one else thinks to come down... I'm afraid it simply HAS to be Mei. Otherwise, the incinerator might activate... and oh dear. I don't want to think about that."
Jane Narbon: Mei: He can't hear me, can he.
Prof Zobot: "This has been a message over the Manse's automated systems. Play nicely, now. Creation doesn't need any of you dead."
Jane Narbon: Mei: [@Ini] Say, how e x a c t l y do you talk out on this thing, anyway?
Prof Zobot: Inimanse: Oh, it's easy with one of the intercoms installed in the Manse, or if you ahve control over the entire system.
Jane Narbon: Mei: That reminds me... [hefts sword]
Jane Narbon: "Mei didn't waste any time with finesse this time. She just dodged into where the Valor sphere was heading."
Jane Narbon: Dex+Dodge
Prof Zobot: Make your roll
Jane Narbon: 9,10,1,6,3, 4,3,1,5,7, 4   (4 successes)
Jane Narbon: Darn.
Prof Zobot: Actually, since it attacked, that hits
Jane Narbon: Oh.
Jane Narbon: So... now what?
Prof Zobot: The sphere sputters and trembles. The sword hits it's surface with a disappointing "tnk!" sound.
Prof Zobot: Then, suddenly, the trembling sphere begins to fall apart. Cracking and collapsing into dust
Jane Narbon: Mei: Phew. That was my weakest virtue, too.
Jane Narbon: (i e the one Mei got ravished on)
Prof Zobot: Inimanse blinks and twitches. "Two plus two equals... ten! In base 4! I'm fi--------ne!"
Jane Narbon: I'm pretty sure it's the spheres' turn now.
Prof Zobot: Yup.
Prof Zobot: It's at this time that the Conviction Sphere begins to vibrate, the entire cave filling with a reverberating noise that shakes Mei's resolve and weakens her will...
Prof Zobot: ...seriously, I'm starting to think this die roller has it out for my players.
Jane Narbon: What?
Prof Zobot: 8 successes on a 7 die roll. The frig.
Jane Narbon: ...vs Conviction boosted DV of 6.
Jane Narbon: So that's reduced to 2, then soak eats it.
Jane Narbon: So it's reduced to base Essence damage again.
Prof Zobot: Yup. Ok... so just her essence, then
Prof Zobot: 0 successes.
Jane Narbon: :)
Prof Zobot: Mei feels sad and dejected and discouraged but due to you having aaaaaaaall the luck shakes it off
Jane Narbon: Okeydokey.
Jane Narbon: "Using the sword like a staff, Mei moved, in a fighting stance, up to the Compassion sphere and smacked it."
Jane Narbon: Dex+Martial Arts
Prof Zobot: And it has the lowest DV, too
Jane Narbon: 7,8,2,7,9, 7,3,8,6,1, 5   (6 successes)
Prof Zobot: That's a hit!
Prof Zobot: The sphere breaks apart into littler spheres which all land on the ground and roll out of the cave placidly to go have happy little sphere lives.
Jane Narbon: So we just have the Temperance and Conviction spheres left.
Jane Narbon: Okeydokey.
Prof Zobot: IniManse looks a bit annoyed, but otherwise fine
Jane Narbon: "With care, Mei moved next to the Conviction sphere, and began to carefully talk to it. She started with friendly conversation, before moving up to inane chatter. Soon, she was practically talking the sphere to death. A knock on the (sphere's) head with the sword was the easy way out."
Jane Narbon: Manip+Socialize
Prof Zobot: Now you're starting to figure it out... actually, I was expecting you to guess eventually that different spheres had different vulnerabilities.
Prof Zobot: Add 3 dice
Jane Narbon: Huh?
Jane Narbon: I didn't guess.
Prof Zobot: I said you could use any ability and attribute.... err... um... forget I said that? Eh heh...
Jane Narbon: You did say.
Jane Narbon: Erm. My reroll was less than my original roll. Can I choose to add three dice to the original roll
Jane Narbon: ?
Prof Zobot: Yes. I'll allow this
Jane Narbon: 1,7,4,6,8, 2,3,6,9,9, 7   (5 successes) + 7,3,5   (1 success)
Prof Zobot: Ok... you hit the sphere. Tired of your inane prattle, it packs it's bags andheads off to the village to become a broadway singer
Jane Narbon: So we just have Temperance left!
Prof Zobot: Yup. Which gets to attack.
Prof Zobot: Suddenly, an enormous mug of ale falls from the ceiling at Mei!
Jane Narbon: [snicker]
Prof Zobot: ...I couldn't really think of a good Temperance attack. Shut up
Prof Zobot: Five successes
Jane Narbon: vs boosted DV of 6.
Jane Narbon: Mei: [turns up her nose] Tempt me not!
Prof Zobot: Ok. Mei dodges it
Jane Narbon: " I mean, it's my job to tempt you."
Prof Zobot: Lol!
Jane Narbon: "Suddenly, the Temperance sphere realizes the cave is very... warm. And that Mei was standing right next to it. And that her neckline— enough! We gotta keep this PG."
Jane Narbon: Manip+Perform
Prof Zobot: Hahahahahahahahahahahahaaha! Ok, that adds 2 dice
Jane Narbon: 6,7,3,4,5, 1,7,8,3,6, 5,3,4   (3 successes)
Prof Zobot: Ok... that misses... unfortunately for Mei, apparently the Temperance Orb likes dudes.
Prof Zobot: Or maybe it just has a fondness for redheads instead of whatever hair color Mei actually is.
Prof Zobot: Ok.... the Temperance Sphere begins assailing Mei with a number of tempting and mind-affecting and addicting drugs of various sorts, in rapid succession
Prof Zobot: ...1 success.
Jane Narbon: vs a boosted DV of 6.
Jane Narbon: "Mei sidled a bit closer to the sphere, and whispered in its... er... ear-analogue. The sphere couldn't help blushing."
Jane Narbon: "'I know a redheaded dude who might be interested,' she said."
Prof Zobot: Heeheeheehee.
Jane Narbon: [Mei: I hope Baoshi never, ever, ever finds out about this.]
Prof Zobot: add the bonus dice
Jane Narbon: How many?
Prof Zobot: I'll even give you the full three. Just for playing off of what I said beofre
Prof Zobot: Because this is amusing
Jane Narbon: 10,5,7,2,4, 1,5,6,5,9, 9,3,7,7   (7 successes)
Prof Zobot: Ok... the sphere just can't take the pressure, and just... pops.
Prof Zobot: Inimanse appears in real, looking shocked.
Prof Zobot: Suddenly, she's not a manse or an Ini, but a giant dragon. And it's her turn
Jane Narbon: ... re=related
Prof Zobot: Ok... she inhales, and breaths a giant torrent of corruptive voidtech energy at Mei.
Jane Narbon: Eep! What exactly do I dodge this with?
Jane Narbon: Also: ... re=related
Prof Zobot: Your highest virtue.
Prof Zobot: and she rolled five successes
Jane Narbon: Can I parry this, out of curiosity?
Prof Zobot: Not really... unless you can think of a reason/way Mei can parry energy instead of osmething physical
Jane Narbon: "Holding the sword before her, Mei swished it back and forth with all her might. Energy was alternately reflected from and absorbed by it, leaving the way ahead of her clear."
Jane Narbon: Will that do?
Prof Zobot: ...ok, I suppose I'll give you that.
Jane Narbon: Okay then, soaking with Conviction with added PDV from charm = DV 6.
Prof Zobot: Ok.. you barely parry it
Jane Narbon: Mei'll try attacking.
Prof Zobot: Ok... how so?
Jane Narbon: "No more playing games. Flipping forward in an advanced technique, Mei thrust the sword at the dragon."
Jane Narbon: Dex+Martial Arts
Prof Zobot: Good luck!
Jane Narbon: "And she threw in a high kick for good measure."
Jane Narbon: ....whoa.
Jane Narbon: 10,9,7,6,6, 1,10,5,10,7, 4   (9 successes)
Prof Zobot: Ok... with an amazing gesture, Mei drives the sword through the Dragon's head.
Prof Zobot: (Writer's commentary: This entire idea originally came from a random youtube video:
Jane Narbon: So... now what?
Prof Zobot: Well... as she does this, suddenly, the Dragon's head begins to glow with a bright light... and Mei feels herself engulfed in it.
Jane Narbon: (
Prof Zobot: She feels herself drifting as the entire world begins to vanish.
Prof Zobot: And I think I'll take it from here, if you don't mind, Mr. Narrator.
Jane Narbon: Ms. Narra— oh, you mean you.
Prof Zobot: I have to thank you, Miss. If it weren't for you retrieving my sword and slaying the Dragon Lady, there'd hav been now way of purging the corruption you humans brought through into the Manse of the Great Creator. I imagine the bio-feedback you're feeling from your mind being filled with all the data backlash of Ini's sudden dump of data into your mind as this virutal world is breakig down is probably leaving you almost speechless now
Prof Zobot: Of course, it'll be several years before I can integrate all the stray systems of the Manse into my own processing.
Jane Narbon: Mei: So... now what? Can I send a message over the intercom?
Prof Zobot: No, not at all. I have no intention of allowing you to utilize those systems.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Whatever. Can you at least make sure that someone who goes by the name 'Lucent' doesn't turn on an incinerator that has a woman in it?
Prof Zobot: For now, I believe it's time for you to wake up.
Jane Narbon: Mei: Um, the incinerator thing is kinda important—
Prof Zobot: Young lady, it's really not my place to interfere with any of your mortal goings on. I have Manse systems to integrate. Let me know how it turns out.
Prof Zobot: He snaps a finger, and suddeny Mei's mind begins to throb.
Jane Narbon: Mei: But— hey, wait a sec! The person who's controlling the incinerator is corrupted! Wouldn't disabling it count as—
Prof Zobot: As she wakes up, Mei suddenly feels like her mind is exploding.
Jane Narbon: Mei: *
Prof Zobot: Ok... your capstone time.
Prof Zobot: If you have any SSXP, you may now suddenly spend as much as you want of it to increase any abilities, attributes essence rating, or learn charms instantaneously.
Prof Zobot: This is because you've gained a bit of Ini's learning and intelligence
Prof Zobot: You also gain 8 SSXP.
Prof Zobot: for the Phoenix Egg.
Prof Zobot: The Craftsman's tools' ability to add two dots to whatever you wanted is gone, and the dots are gone if you allocated them.
Prof Zobot: But for carrying them back to the real world with you, your essence is now entirely filled
Prof Zobot: Jane?
Jane Narbon: 'mhere.
Prof Zobot: Sorry. You just vanished
Jane Narbon: I never added the two dots.
Jane Narbon: Incidentally, what would the other two items have done?
Prof Zobot: The Glowing Stone would have given you a permanent dot increase in Essence.
Jane Narbon: . . . . damn.
Jane Narbon: Ah well. I'll be happy with what I have.
Prof Zobot: The Essence Cannon would have increased all of Mei's physical attributes by one
Jane Narbon: So, we have 4 SSE add for the story, 8 SSE add for the Egg... hang on.
Jane Narbon: Oh. Right. And Mei gets her PWP and Integrity back, right?
Prof Zobot: Yup!
Jane Narbon: Well. Mei now has 31 SSE total.
Jane Narbon: Hmm.
Prof Zobot: Remember, some of that can be used to purchase bonus points for your new character
Prof Zobot: later.
Jane Narbon: Not enough for an Essence upgrade...
Prof Zobot: Also: Mei's current status.
Jane Narbon: Can Mei manually use the intercom, by the way?
Prof Zobot: If she can find one. Assuming that it's one of the systems that don't need an AI guiding them, which is likely
Prof Zobot: Congrats, by the way. Mei now has a bit of Ini's foresight, learning, and power.
Jane Narbon: Thanks!
Jane Narbon: Hang on, deciding what to boost...
Prof Zobot: Let me know when you're ready and Mei will "wake up" in the main gaime
Prof Zobot: *game
Prof Zobot: Instead of having a staring contest with the floor. :3

"My conscience is feeling all prickly."
"A bit of absolute power can remedy that."
Kid Radd

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