Comics by Shaenon II

Mad science has never been so cute!
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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2009 4:31 pm 
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Guards defeated, Emily scurries to keep up with her cousin, on the way to the room of screams and squawks...only to meet Frederick on the way. And a strange man, and a cat creature? Who looks like that fighter from the bar last night...goddess, was that just last night?
Her head still hurts.
"Frederick-any foes left back there? Good. Let's search the room while we have a chance, maybe we can find our belongings, and perchance a hangover cure...gah.... Who are your companions?"

_________________
.. not how Science works, love. 1st, you build the machine, then it tells you what it's for.
Do you think I had the 1st idea what a squidhole was when I invented it? Certainly not! I was just messing about! That's when the very best & very Maddest Science gets done. I thought,Why, this alabaster octopus looks like it wants a nice transmission inside it,& fairly soon I had a thing that obviously had a Use, though what that Use could be was a total mystery.
(Sameness Engine) I haven't the 1st notion of what it's for! That's not why I made it-I made it for the sheer joy of making something new! It's getting up to tell me what it wants me to do, though, I can just feel it. It's been giggling a lot at night.
The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland
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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Mon Mar 30, 2009 4:34 pm 
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Rand hefted the chain, giving it an experimental swing. Heavy, and the mounting bracket at the end would do serious damage. Moving to the front of the group, he stood ready as the party moved forwards, ready to take on whatever came his way. If the hangover didn't get him first. *ouch*

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 9:44 am 
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David sighed as the feline girl peppered him with questions. "Ah... yes there are, except they look kinda fuzzier in general." He rubbed his neck to indicate that the feline beastmen he'd encountered were covered in fur. He tried answering the rest of her questions as best he could. "I didn't know very much about what they're like. The first one I met was traveling with an entertainer troope once as a strongman, and the only other one I've met was..." He paused and thought. "Well, the other one was the assistant to an Alchemist I met a few times when I visited Nuivel, on the coast far south of here. He traveled to the uncivilized southern continent once in serach of some undiscovered alchemy ingrediants or something, and one of them came back with him. She's the one who told me that they lived down there. And that's really most of what I know."

Then they were approached by another group of people, whom he presumed were escaped prisoners. Looking them over, they seemed familiar, but none of them looked to be people he expected would recognise him. That was good... for the moment, secrecy was highly important. "Ah... hello!" Then it hit him. "Hey... that's how I know all of you! You were the people laying in a heap outside the collapsed bar last night, before the lizardmen captured us all!" He smiled, glad to figure out at least one puzzle. "You all look much better now that you're not heavily intoxicated." He turned to the bunnyman. "Is one of them your Da or do we need to keep searching? I don't want to have to wander around this pit of lizardmen any longer than we have to. I've heard rumors lately that Ancalagon, who lives beneath this colony of lizardmen, may have awoken from her dormancy..."

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

-Meanwhile...-

Atrius listened, vaguely able to distinguish words amidst the buzzing noise in his head.

Aaaaaatrius... you have been chosen, boy... the Cauldron has been cracked... you must prevent the imbalance...

The voice sounded vaguely like some sort of grumpy old man.

_________________
We've learned a lot, but this still isn't going to be easy. But I don't think the elder star's confidence in us was misplaced. I know we can do this! We'll set things right! ...somehow.

"There is a fine line between a good King and a Despot. A King is best when His subjects barely realize that He exists. When His work is done and His will is fulfilled, they will say, 'We did it ourselves.'"
-Xin Yun


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 11:41 am 
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(And now I've gone crazy on top of everything else. Fate dammit, voices in your head don't tell you to prevent imbalance and mad stuff about cauldrons-unless you're absolutely crackers. I'd better just ignore it.)


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Tue Mar 31, 2009 5:51 pm 
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"Yes, we're the formerly intoxicated villagers, soon to be the angrily hung-over adventurers..." Ivan clutched his head, "There's a bottle of aspirin in it for the first person who finds my bag! Knowing the reptiles, it's probably been tossed into some pit along with anything the lizards don't think would look nice mounted on a wall..."

Depending on how empty the pit was, that would mean lots and lots of broken glass. "Does anyone here happen to be an alchemist or similar...?"

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of the tallest tower - with a sniper rifle.


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 2:01 am 
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Jane decided to keep silent. No sense in letting the others know too much about her. It was much more fun playing the Woman Of Mystery.

After a few seconds, Jane realized she didn't in fact know the alchemical formula for anything that could relieve a headache. She could cook up sleep drugs, poisons, or other little chaos-causers (not to mention the disguise potions and similar), but she didn't know anything that could banish a headache.

Something to look into.

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


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 4:22 am 
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Lady V ignores the strangers. And the former bar patrons. And even her cousin, and his son. Grimly, she stalks forward. Goddess have mercy, will they never stop that infernal chattering? And the room where Frederic was lately held captive is professionaly searched. Their belongings have to be somewhere....don't they?
Let's see, they had prisioners captured, livestock, even a sacrifice...if that doesn't mean party, she doesn't know what does! She unearths a dusty bottle, pops the cork, sniffs....yep. It's full of that moonshine they brew from the glowing fungi. Time for a litle hair of the dog that bit you.
She tilts the bottle, and takes a swig. Bleagh! It's as nasty as she remembered, but it's got a nice kick to it. She makes a face, and turns to the others. "Time to salvage what weapons and food we can-anybody want to roast some chickens first?"
She hears the cat woman grumbling under her breath, barely audible.
"ruining nisse chicken, sscorching it...", but chooses to ignore it.
"If not, we'd best be looking for an exit-was anybody concious when they brought us in here?"
She takes a smaller, more judicious sip, and basks in the warm glow. Noting the wistful glances on a few faces, she smiles humorously. "It's not asperin, and it tastes worse than you think. But it does wonders for the headaches, if you limit yourself to just a swig." Hoisting the bottle towards them, she offers, "Next?"

_________________
.. not how Science works, love. 1st, you build the machine, then it tells you what it's for.
Do you think I had the 1st idea what a squidhole was when I invented it? Certainly not! I was just messing about! That's when the very best & very Maddest Science gets done. I thought,Why, this alabaster octopus looks like it wants a nice transmission inside it,& fairly soon I had a thing that obviously had a Use, though what that Use could be was a total mystery.
(Sameness Engine) I haven't the 1st notion of what it's for! That's not why I made it-I made it for the sheer joy of making something new! It's getting up to tell me what it wants me to do, though, I can just feel it. It's been giggling a lot at night.
The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland
C Valente


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 8:11 pm 
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Andrew breathed a sigh of releif, stepping forward and clapping his hand on Frederic's shoulder, smiling proudly at his bunny-eared son.
"No need to worry- I am, in fact, his Father." he said, running his hand through his hair with a satisfied little noise.
"Now I just need my coat back, and my spectacles. And who is your ally, Frederik?" he asked, seeming oddly cheerfull for a man who had been mugged by lizardmen.

"Erm, oi'm not sure.... between th' attackin' me an' th' chickens an' whatnot, oi missed 'er name." Frederik admitted, scratching the back of his head. Frankly once the haze of battle was about him, he started to space on most things....

"Well then! I am Andrew Omega Tinker, and this is my son, Frederik Zeta Tinker. And also... I have a spell I keep on hand that summons a light adventuring outfit- perhaps you'd like a chance to change out of the dress?" he said, holding his hand out to her pleasantly. He had skipped most of his name on habit- a Wizard's true name was too valuable as a weapon to some...

Frederik, in the meantime, stepped up to Sir David, speaking so that only the knight could hear- well, unless someone was really trying.

"Taren, thanks for th' help. Even though it turned out that 'e wos only in th' next room, oi was really worried about findin' moi Da'. Se... oi'm a Creation, sort of. Long story. An' righ' now oi c'n only stay in a Humanoid form for a few hours a day. So oi know this is a *big* favor t' ask, but so long as you're around, could ya keep a' eye on 'im? He's really smart, but he tends top try an' do thing sby himself when he shouldn't."

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 8:35 pm 
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Claire sighed. She wasn't sure what to think of the other cats, although she'd probably never meet them. And even if she did, it might be better just to pretend to be human. She *really* needed to get her locket fixed...

As the Lord Tinker offered her his spell, Claire stepped back, away from the his outstretched hand. "Don't touch me," she snarled, displaying her teeth. She'd take her chances with the dress rather than let him cast magic on her. She didn't mind magic normally, if the caster thought she was human, but otherwise the risk was too great. She wanted her coat back, and her ax, but the only reason she wasn't bolting right now was that she had told Taren she would help him find his scroll-thing. If her stuff was with it, all well and good, but even if not, she was leaving everyone else behind as soon as she had fulfilled that agreement. She glared at the wizard, making a mental note not to let him out of her sight. She would have to keep an eye on the rest of the group, too. She didn't know how many of them were magic-users...

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"Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering Kaboom!" -Marvin the Martian

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2009 11:35 pm 
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For a moment Andrew just stared, anger slowly crossing over his epression like a storm cloud. After a moment he scowled, holding one hand out and chanting something quietly under his breath. In a goffy little 'Poof', a pair of pants and a hooded shirt appeared, which he shoved into teh cat-girls hands with every little inch of restrained tantrum-ing.

"Take it. There is no spell attached to it, and if you refuse on principle of whatever grudge you seem to have against me than I *truly* hope you enjoy being in a dungeon dressed up like a Monsters Appetizer." he snapped, crossing his arms.

"It's not like I have the *plague*. And why does everyone assume I'm going to be liek every other wizard on Terra? 'Oh no! It;s a Wizard! Quick, kill him before he turns us all into newts!' Even *monsters* do it! 'Quick! Kill the damn wizard, or he'll make us his familiars, or else weaken us while some meathead knight kills us!' I don;t even *have* those spells! Bah! Why do I even bother going out anymore..." he ranted to himself, taking one of his knives out and idly bending it in his hands.

He paused, thinking for a moment.
"Oh. Right. Natural inclination to Do Good set in my family line via Great Grandpoppa, and a perpetual search for something that will allow Frederik to maintain Humanoid form. Almost forgot for a moment there." he looked down at the once-dagger, noting it was more like a series of lockpicks now. He shrugged, and pocket them for later.

Andrew Gains- Makeshift lockpicks!
Andrew Gains a new level in Exposition!

_________________
"Only If It's Funny".


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 3:29 am 
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Lady V watches her cousin's hissed rant at the cat woman silently. After he stalks off to play with his new lockpicks, she idly saunters next to the woman.
Quietly, casually-"Listen. Our individual chances of getting out of here are enhanced, if we manage to stick together. You might find yourself facing something where your speed and strenght won't avail you-he might find something his spells are useless against. We'll all be going own own way when we're free, I have no doubt. You don't have to like him-you don't have to trust him. Even if all he dared offer you was a little practical help, and a friendly greeting. But you will refrain from being rude to my cousin. Do I make myself clear, Moggie?"

_________________
.. not how Science works, love. 1st, you build the machine, then it tells you what it's for.
Do you think I had the 1st idea what a squidhole was when I invented it? Certainly not! I was just messing about! That's when the very best & very Maddest Science gets done. I thought,Why, this alabaster octopus looks like it wants a nice transmission inside it,& fairly soon I had a thing that obviously had a Use, though what that Use could be was a total mystery.
(Sameness Engine) I haven't the 1st notion of what it's for! That's not why I made it-I made it for the sheer joy of making something new! It's getting up to tell me what it wants me to do, though, I can just feel it. It's been giggling a lot at night.
The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland
C Valente


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 3:34 am 
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While the Wizard, the Nobelwoman, and the Brawler were fighting Atrius slipped past them. (Now lets see-rope and a way to my stuff.)

Noticing the animals running around he glowered a bit that they stole his sheep. He looked back at the argument. (Sure wizards aren't trustworthy, but you don't say anything. Just stab them if they pull something tricky. Yeesh.)


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 4:31 am 
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Claire managed to refrain from hitting the noblewoman, but only just. Arrogant, haughty, condescending, spoiled, bullying-

But she did have to get out. And she had to help Taren, first, otherwise she would have just left then and there. She thought she could make it out- it wouldn't be the first time she had to fight her way out of caves full of monsters trying to kill her by herself, and she could probably make it back to the town, especially if she stole another chicken. But if she wanted to keep her word, she would have to work with the rest of the group. "I understand," she said, sullenly, staring at the floor next to the noblewoman. If the wizard did get her hands on her, she was going to be very upset with herself. All because that rabbit wanted to find his Da...

Perhaps the wizard was what he said. Perhaps the rabbit wasn't bound and actually did want to find him. Perhaps the clothing *didn't* contain coercion spells in the seams. Perhaps the wizard wasn't playing the 'oh poor me everyone's so mean to me why are you such a jerk' card, and she really would offend him by refusing the clothing.

Unfortunately, either way the noblewoman wasn't going to accept her being rude. She was going to have to change into the wizard's clothing. She shuddered.

She tried to make herself feel better about it. If she was going to be caught by the wizard, it was best he nabbed her at the earliest opportunity, so that he would underestimate her and give her a chance to escape. Fighters rarely knew anything about coercion spells, or binding, or anything about magic besides 'dodge the fireball.' And perhaps the rabbit would help her- with even a little bit of freedom, she could find a way to run away.

She stepped back from the noblewoman trying to remain calm. She had escaped before, she could escape again. So long as she didn't show herself to be too clever, there would be opportunities... With that, she tore the blood-stained dress off her body, ripping the seams with her claws when it wouldn't come off fast enough. Modesty had long since been replaced with maiming anyone who looked at her funny, something that had been required in the large armies where she had little privacy. She quickly changed into the pants and shirt, pausing only momentarily to create a hole for her tail. Finally pulling the hood up to cover her ears- not that it really mattered, since anyone could see her tail- she braced herself for any spells that might take hold.

_________________
"Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering Kaboom!" -Marvin the Martian

Spam Poison. I think.


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 4:45 am 
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As Frederik asked his question, David's mind hummed with one single thought. We don't have time for that we don't have time for that we don't have time for that we- he smiled at the bunny-creature. "Sure! I'll try to make sure he doesn't get in any real trouble." Arrrgh! Drat that thrice-cursed Paladin's oath!

Then he looked over and saw that many people were fighting, including that cat lady. He sighed. "Ah... everyone, calm down!" For a very brief moment his voice had taken on a calming, breathless, ethereal quality to itself that quickly vanished. "If we all keep fighting we'll merely attract more foes to our location. I can help you all escape if you need the assistance, and my thoughts on the subject are that you sorely need to. This is no place for innocents to tarry." He folded his arms, letting the sword he had procured hang at his side. "I was awake when we were all brought here, and I can tell you that the way we were taken in is two floors above us, beyond the makeshift garrison and some other structures. It's really not that hard to find, although I'm pretty sure there are some nasty traps along the way. I shall escort you all there so I can ensure that you're safely away from here, but I myself have to stay until I recover my things... they have, ah," He paused for a moment. "-sentimental value, and I would hate to be parted from them. Once you are all free I would advise traveling to the north. Not far from here there is a walled city on the outskirts of civilized lands within the boundaries of the nation you were in. It would probably be safer for you all than if you returned to a small hamlet like Janfort... not that there's much of that place left..." He turned to Claire. "Including you, miss. There must be someone up there that can help you with whatever seems to be causing you frustration, and you are unbound from any promise you may have made to me. I seek not to bring more woe upon you, and would work to ensure your happiness and safety as long as I am in your company."

He sighed. "As for myself... while I hate to say it, I have yet to see nor hear any sign of my possessions in the rooms beyond. I may have to seek out the deepest depths of this dragon's lair to reclaim what trinkets I have lost, and in that I do not expect anyone to follow."

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The voice inside Atrius' head was growing quite indignant and annoyed.

Threk'sht curse you, Atrius, go after the Cauldron of Elementals already! Friggin'.... friggin follow your destiny and restore balance to the cosmic scheme of things! Fulfill the vow of your ancestors and do it!

_________________
We've learned a lot, but this still isn't going to be easy. But I don't think the elder star's confidence in us was misplaced. I know we can do this! We'll set things right! ...somehow.

"There is a fine line between a good King and a Despot. A King is best when His subjects barely realize that He exists. When His work is done and His will is fulfilled, they will say, 'We did it ourselves.'"
-Xin Yun


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:10 am 
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"Oy, oy... I told you we would soon be the angrily hung-over adventurers," Ivan stepped forward with a weak grin, "You've seen how we can get angry, now let us show you we can be adventurers..."

He cocked his head to the side and looked at the heroic sounding young man, "You've written us off, haven't you? Because you found us in a drunken heap? But perhaps if one of us told you what happened at the bar that night, you'd agree such strange circumstances could only be the work of destiney..."

"This group, with its skills, came to be in this place together. Even if we do go to your walled city, it'll be a safer place if we use those skills to clear this dungeon. Protecting a city always outways the danger to a ragtag band of misfits..."

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The Princess will be
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of the tallest tower - with a sniper rifle.


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 8:42 am 
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"I'm coming with you," said Jane from the shadows, "at least until I recover my equipment. Some of my items are... shall we say... irreplaceable."
The last word was said with a verbal evil grin.
"Besides, it'll be fun!"

It actually would be. Jane had just taken a proper inventory. She had a few small things left on her, poison-tipped pins and such, but otherwise, she was unarmed. Normally, Jane let her enemies think they had a chance.

Now, they actually had one.

Hee. Hee. Hee!

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


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:26 am 
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"Well I am not the kind of person to let someone waltz into trouble. Besides maybe on the way there we can break some stuff and skulls that will slow these lizards down. Who knows..." Locke gave a shrug, "Maybe we will run into something important." Locke used the spear to prop himself up. Not that he needs to be propped up. Locke was not as concerned about his stuff as the rest of the group seems to be. He never really carried anything he can't replace. His unreplaceables are locked up in hidding and some those things will not be seen by anyone if Locke can help it.

Locke took this time to truly study the group. They sure do look an odd mixed group. Locke didn't quite trust anyone, yet. We all may be in this boat together but that does not stop one from trying to backstab the group. Oh well. Not like he had much choice.


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 2:36 pm 
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Claire blinked. He would work to ensure her happiness and safety? Either she was lucky enough to have found assistance, or it was a trap. Her tail twitched as she thought it over. If she tried to get out on her own, she might have some trouble, and if she got injured she would be in trouble- she was vulnerable enough as it was. Not to mention her current deficiencies as far as weaponry was concerned. If she stayed, Taren might protect her, maybe even from the wizard. Of course, she had to factor in the possibility that the wizard wasn't after her as well...

Going to a large city would present certain difficulties at the moment. She knew how to fix her locket, of course- this wasn't the first time it had broken- but it was better to do it in some small out-of-the way place where she was less likely to run into someone dangerous. And perhaps she could find what she needed here.

Although there were also the problems inherent in joining an adventuring group... but perhaps only for a little while. She didn't have to go on any major quests with them or anything. She could just get her stuff back, perhaps get some treasure, and then leave.

She nodded slightly to herself as she came to her conclusion. "I'll come with you," she told Taren. She didn't really want to trust him, but she didn't have much choice at the moment. "And I'll still help you get back the scroll and necklace." If he was going to protect her, she might as well. After all, if he went ahead and double-crossed her, she wouldn't feel that bad about leaving him for the lizardmen.

Claire has joined the party!

_________________
"Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering Kaboom!" -Marvin the Martian

Spam Poison. I think.


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:18 pm 
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The clothing, as it settle don Claire.... did... nothing. Aside from be nicely warm and sturdy enough to function as weak +1 armor. It wasn't even *made* magically- it was just a summoning spell from a trunk he kept at home full of Very Useful Things. He'd learned some time ago that when you needed Pants, you wanted pants that were *not* affected by a Despell.

Frederic glanced at hsi Dad and sighed, running a hand through his hair.
"Oi do whot my Da does. SImple as that. I mean, he's my *dad*."

Andrew rolled his eyes, still sulking and fiddling with a lock he'd found on the ground.
"I have items of my own I must find, both of sentimental value. It is in my favor to not leave the group, but don't think I wouldn't prefer chancing it than to be treated unfairly by someone I have never met before in my *life*, let alone EVER done anything against." he snapped.

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:49 pm 
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"Excuse me for being cautious," grumbled Claire. She glared at the wizard. "Maybe after the fifth time or so someone decided that no one would care if I was kidnapped or bound or anything I stopped falling for the 'oh look at me I'm a nice wizard' routine." She shouldn't be saying this, but she was scared, and wanted her ax back, and now the Lord and the Lady were angry with her. "Maybe you aren't going to try to make me your familiar or servant or anything, but it happens often enough that I've found it's not worth the risks required to be polite! Maybe this is the best way I've found to minimize the amount of time I spend loaded down with so many coercion spells I can barely breath without permission!" She took a deep breath, trying to calm down, and stalked over to Taren. "Can we get going, please? I need to stay with you, at least until we find our stuff, but I'd like to minimize the amount of time we spend in these caves." She was trying *not* to think about how much information she had just given the wizard. And even if he wasn't interested in acquiring her, that didn't mean that no one else in the party would be... And now they all know she had escaped at least five times... She tried not to think about it too much. She *really* hoped Taren would protect her, otherwise she was in big trouble.

"So can we hurry up, please?"

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 5:58 pm 
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At Ivan's statement "Taren" looked hurt. "I never intended to write you off! I apologize for any insult. I merely presumed... well, I wouldn't wish to remain in such a place any longer than I had to. I'm... obligated... to search for the scroll that I lost, but none of you are in any such position. So I merely believed that it would be best to escort you all. If you remain it may be that you would meet death, and I cannot in good conscience allow that if I could prevent it."

David stepped forward and looked over at Tinker. "But don't worry. If you really value these things you've lost, I promise I'll help you find them. And I promise, on my honor, that I shall see to it that everyone treats each other fairly and justly." he turned to the rest of the group, raising his voice. "After all, we are all in the same dilemma. As long as I am with you I promise to be as goodly and steadfast an ally as I can be, and I would ask nothing more than the same from each of you." He folded his arms. He looked back at Tinker and smiled warmly. "And that includes you and the feline lady. So long as both of ye can be civil to each other, I shall prevent what harm I can from befalling either of you. Tis the least a humble wayfarer such as I could do." At this point he had manuvered himself between the two of them, desperately hoping to avoid a conflict between the two volatile parties.

He crossed his arms. "Tis a good chance that much of what all you have lost would have been taken to the level above, where these foul creatures keep their garrison, their smithy, and their armory. Unless any of it was magical, that is. I was being held there, and liberated a blade before I fought my way downward. I would have gotten armor, but it takes forever to put on and they didn't have any shields there. You see, I expect that the things I lost are deeper... within floors below, below where the more learned of these foes practice alchemy and the darker arts of the arcane, and below even that, where the dread worm Ancalagon is said to sleep." he thought for a moment. "I care not which path we pursue... there are stairs to either level beyond this hallway; this floor is mostly for mundane affairs such as food storage and imprisonment. Whichever path the group chooses to walk first I shall go along what. What say all of ye?"

After a moment, he added. "Ah... there is something I forgot. Should any of you find a rolled up scroll sealed with a mark imprinted in wax, please do not touch it. There is an... enchantment of sorts on it. It will burn the body of whoever touches it should they not be one of the ones the spell permits."

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We've learned a lot, but this still isn't going to be easy. But I don't think the elder star's confidence in us was misplaced. I know we can do this! We'll set things right! ...somehow.

"There is a fine line between a good King and a Despot. A King is best when His subjects barely realize that He exists. When His work is done and His will is fulfilled, they will say, 'We did it ourselves.'"
-Xin Yun


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:09 pm 
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Andrew sighed as the lock snapped open, his anger draining away. He knew it wasn't her fault... if he was a non-magic user he probably would have developed the same mistrust as well- and as it was other magic users made him start reaching for a blackjack.

He stood, turning to Claire with his hands spread out so that she could she he wasn't preforming an enchantment.
"I apologize for acting rudely- your in a strange place, and unable to disguise your identity, and you have clearly had some very bad experiences. But I give you my word that so long as we are traveling together, I will personally see to it that no one places such a horrible enchantment again- this I swear on the grave of my father." he said solemnly, a slight swirl of energy circling his hands and neck for a moment as sign of the Oath forming.

Tinkers did not mess around with Oaths.

That said he turned to David, crossing hsi arms.
"Downstairs, is my vote I keep some family trinkets in my Cloak... that, erm, *might* be of some magical usage."

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 7:15 pm 
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Lady V speaks up. "I also speak for going to the lower levels. It seems that your lost items, and anything special any one of us may have lost 'tis more likely to be there. Plus, these creatures overran the town-how long before they set their sights on the city? Even if we go there for saftey, it may not remain safe long." She grins, and continues. "Plus, it's an adventure! Sir David, I will aid you, if you will."
She's lost nothing irreplaceable; there's no reason she can't leave. But-monsters to fight and outwit! Possibly treasure to be had, who knows?
She turns to Claire, and sighs. "All right...for my part I bear you no ill will. It's easy for me to say "but my cousin isn't like that!", but what of it? Even if you believed me, as you say, the next mage you meet... If I may presume to make a suggestion...." here she draws a breath. "Talk to Frederick, his son. Find out from him what kind of man Andrew is, ask him questions. And consider...perhaps the best way to protect yourself from other wizards-besides avoiding them, which can be easier said than done, or becoming one yourself...Perhaps having one that won't hurt you for an ally?" She smiles wryly. "I won't expect you to believe me. Neither will I apologize for defending him. Truce?"

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.. not how Science works, love. 1st, you build the machine, then it tells you what it's for.
Do you think I had the 1st idea what a squidhole was when I invented it? Certainly not! I was just messing about! That's when the very best & very Maddest Science gets done. I thought,Why, this alabaster octopus looks like it wants a nice transmission inside it,& fairly soon I had a thing that obviously had a Use, though what that Use could be was a total mystery.
(Sameness Engine) I haven't the 1st notion of what it's for! That's not why I made it-I made it for the sheer joy of making something new! It's getting up to tell me what it wants me to do, though, I can just feel it. It's been giggling a lot at night.
The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland
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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2009 9:17 pm 
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"There is only one thing that would be downstairs, but I won't leave without it," said Atrius deliberately.


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 2:57 am 
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Claire sighed. Why did people have to be so friendly? There was only so much she could mistrust them, and they seemed to be doing the best they could to alleviate that. And it looked like this was the safest she was going to be for a long time. She wasn't paranoid enough to think someone would make this detailed a trap just to catch her, after all. And now she was with an adventuring group again...

"Truce," she told the Lady, with some reluctance. She didn't bother explaining the problems with having a wizard as an ally. Although it was a bit irritating that the Lady would automatically assume she hadn't tried that already. She wouldn't care, though. She wasn't going to stay with this adventuring party once she got her locket fixed, so she wasn't going to let their opinions affect her. "And I don't care if we go up or down. My stuff probably got separated anyway."

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Sat Apr 04, 2009 6:48 pm 
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Lady Viktor looked around. "Mystery woman? Jane? What's your opinion?"

Silence.

"Jane?"

"Right here, Lady Viktor." Jane's whispered voice came right behind the back of her neck.
Acting on instinct, Lady V whirled, arm extended, even as Jane dodged out of the way. Her grin confirmed everything the Lady needed to know.

"I think we should probably go down-- my items went in that direction, as (no doubt) did most of everyone's important things," Jane said.
She didn't mention that if she wanted to, down there, she could give Rand the slip... or just slip him something. "Drag her back"... ha! No chance of that.

At that moment, Rand turned and looked at Jane. It was one of those stares which can see right through you. It was almost as if he could guess what she was thinking.

Jane kept out of his vision range after that.

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Mon Apr 06, 2009 8:03 pm 
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Sir David nodded. "Alright. Let's go downward..." he led the group out of the hallway, across several corpses of dead lizardmen. Further down the hallway there were two vertical shafts with rickety wooden platforms suspended by lengths of chain. By pulling on one end or the other, the platforms could be raised or lowered from one level to another. "This is how I managed to get down to this level." He walked over and began moving the elevator downward.

There was a strong smell, like decaying fruit, which seemed to permeate the halls. The entire area was dark, the only source of light some faint growing moss growing in scattered clumps along the walls. Two passageways branched off to to north and the west. From the west there could be heard a faint, periodic hissing sound and complex clicking noises. From the right, the footsteps of about 3 pairs of legs seemed to be moving down the corridor.

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We've learned a lot, but this still isn't going to be easy. But I don't think the elder star's confidence in us was misplaced. I know we can do this! We'll set things right! ...somehow.

"There is a fine line between a good King and a Despot. A King is best when His subjects barely realize that He exists. When His work is done and His will is fulfilled, they will say, 'We did it ourselves.'"
-Xin Yun


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 9:20 am 
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Claire pricked her ears. Footsteps to the north, sounds from the west- lizardmen talking? She hefted the spear. "Ok, Taren," she whispered. "Which way? I would say north- we might be able to take out whoever's there quietly, and if they're coming in this direction, we'll run into them anyway. Do you know if there's some way we can take them by surprise? You're the only one who's been down here before."

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"Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering Kaboom!" -Marvin the Martian

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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 9:24 am 
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As the group waited, the three creatures moving towards them stepped into view. They were, of course, more lizardmen. But two of these ones were wearing deep grey robes, and the third a robe of ebony hue. One of the grey robed ones hissed loudly, as it took a step back and withdrew from within it's robe a set of three small vials, tossing them at the group.

The vials that the lizardman apocathary tossed each did a different thing. The first narrowly missed Atrius, landing at his feet and breaking, then making a foul bubbling sound as it's contents began to eat into the floor. The second vial crashed against the clothing covering Ivan's arm, coating parts of it with a deep brown goop which quickly began to light on fire and burn. The third hit the ground in the middle of the group and emitted an extremely bright light, which only served to stun the group for a few moments, but had a much worse effect on the photosensitive lizardmen, who hissed and drew back a bit.

But the bright flash of light also did something else. For a few moments it also illuminated the entire nearby cavern.

The group had gotten off of the chain elevator againt a wall, and due to the darkness had assumed that they had gotten off into another passageway. But they had been wrong. What they had entered into resembled a small underground canyon, and the group was standing on the far south rim. Briefly, they could see that encircling the canyon were a number of small groups of lizardmen, with different vaguely alchemical and blacksmith-ish apparatii set up at different points. It seemed that the lizardmen had been working with various chemicals and ores down here.

But it was what was at the center of the canyon that most people's attention might have been captivated by. A large pile of gleaming shiny things lay on an island at the center of the canyon, surrounded by a bubbling moat of an undiscernable greenish liquid. It was a mix of glittering gold and silver coins, as well as jewels and gemstones of varying types, and many other treasures laying about. Weapons and armor, books and sculptures, bags and potions, and even possibly the groups personal belongings lay piled there, with what looked to be an enormous black-scaled wyrm laying on top, it's eyes closed and it's wings folded. Another chain elevator sat at the edge of the canyon on the other end from the group, seemingly the only way down to the treasure trove without the risk of falling and death.

David smiled and whistled at the sight, and then his attention was immediately distracted by the lizardmen as the black-robed one sent a bolt of fire flying past his head.

There was a scrabbling of scaly feet as the other lizardmen from around the rim of the pit, alerted by the brief flash of light, began moving towards the intruders... their numbers more than anyone had been able to count from the momentary flashbang...

_________________
We've learned a lot, but this still isn't going to be easy. But I don't think the elder star's confidence in us was misplaced. I know we can do this! We'll set things right! ...somehow.

"There is a fine line between a good King and a Despot. A King is best when His subjects barely realize that He exists. When His work is done and His will is fulfilled, they will say, 'We did it ourselves.'"
-Xin Yun


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 Post subject: Re: The Madde Alchemy Wars: The Cauldron of Elementals
PostPosted: Tue Apr 07, 2009 10:18 am 
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Claire shoved the spear into Frederik's hands and withdrew the butcher's knife she had picked up earlier. "Alright, Rabbit, how well can you fight against a lizardmen hoard?" She raised her voice. "Well, do we advance or retreat? We can't stay here, but if we're aggressive enough, we can probably break through. Otherwise, we can take our chances trying to get back up the elevator, but we'll have to come back here eventually. I say we charge, but we'd better hurry up and decide- we don't have a lot of time to debate." Unless someone else took control soon, she would have to do it- she hoped they would listen to her if it came to that. But it would be better than leaving the group confused and open to attack, or forcing someone completely incompetent into the role of commander.

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"Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be an earth-shattering Kaboom!" -Marvin the Martian

Spam Poison. I think.


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