A Short History of Two Kalbs, A Bard, and a Concerned Prostitute: Part 55

We traveled with the Builder to what we hoped was the final arena only to arrive at a place torn apart by fighting factions. Wizards were heavily engaged with Voidlings that fell from the rip above while the dragon continued it’s ascent. We opted to head towards the dragon and I used my levitation spell to boost people into the sky. Together we reached the dragon and had begun fighting it when-

We were fighting the dragon the battlefield once again. Spiders crawled everywhere while it continued to breath on us. We fought valiantly against them when-

We stood as we felt the Builder’s plan came to fruition. We felt power slowly seeping down to us while we talked with his “Avatars” when-

We stood in a dark room while the Avatar of Maka slaughtered everyone outside. We waited in fear while she broke the door down when-

We were playing cards with the little girl, trying to learn what secrets we could to try and ascertain the correct path when-

We were still playing cards, but now things were… better? We keep shifting from one reality to another, praying to find a reality that would work for all of us and that may be the problem- the only one that we would all compromise on is one where the world stays the same. I don’t think that is something that can be achieved anymore. The world is at a precipice and the only thing we can do is determine where we land.

We shift again.

Byron's View(s)?: The Final Battle?

With a flash of green we found ourselves transported to the place of the Eater once more. Above us, the rip into the Void, surrounding us columns of differing substances representing… something… From the void would fall small creatures that would then rush to attack the large group of wizards who were also present. (Everyone loves a party) The Eater had leaped off of one of the towers and was very slowly flying through the air towards the void. I resolved to fix that problem. To that end I took off into the air, and at the same time Varys levitated the others towards our foe.

We got in a fairly successful first attack against him, but he was still on an upward trajectory, we just had to

survive the fight a little longer. We’d been holding off the voidlings from the Eater’s corpse and Macha was stuck in the hole, but if the sword were removed from the corpse then all would be lost. Just a little

longer. We’d been in the square all day fighting the godsforsaken Eater and now that it looked like we were about to get the upper hand the Wizards show up. I managed to grapple with our foe to prevent him from taking out the rest of us, so that Leo could get into position

to finish installing the Builder in his rightful place as a god. Having defeated the Eater things became desperate very quickly and we formed a Community with the Builder and followed through with placing the Builder in the crack to the Void. Alice started ranting about how all of this was Wrong, and now that I began to think about it this did seem a little like something we wouldn’t do. It seemed more likely that we should be

fighting the Eater above the arena, where Leo managed to tie a rope around the spine of our enemy, and I gave it a mighty heave, pulling him out of his trajectory so that he wouldn’t be able to make it to the void without climbing back up the tower. Suddenly I was simultaneously fighting him in the square, wrestling him and keeping his head out of line with the others so that he could not breathe his weapon on them as well as pulling him down.

able to take care of the Eater(just) and so we fled back down the well that he came from as we saw THE DOLLMAKER laying waste to the wizards on the field of battle. Our respite didn’t last long, as the little girl turned up in our hiding place in a remarkably short time. She had apparently been officially graduated by Macha, and was there to kill us. We managed to stay her hand by some card trickery involving a game of blackjack, which she did not know the rules for. We did get some helpful information that should help us in our efforts

With Macha mostly through the hole and Devlin at her side it didn’t really matter anymore what happened with the sword, so we abandoned that position, and left it to the Voidlings while the gods contended with each other above. Gelt’s referee avatar/aspect was hanging around waiting to give us the lemonade and cake that we were due for winning the duel, and since there wasn’t much left for us to do, we decided we might as well partake

with Virginia’s help the installation of the Builder was going quite smoothly. We were talking to the dollmaker, who was now the avatar of slavery and asking her about our current state of being where we seemed to be slipping between versions of things. She gave us some quite useful info but we weren’t completely sure how to put it to use when

we noticed that while we were getting the upper hand on the Eater above, below the Wizards were handily mopping up the Voidlings and would soon be turning their attentions to what was going on up here. And they likely would not be, strictly speaking, an ally to us.

Byron's View: A History Lesson?
Or, Two strange reunions.

Having exited my ersatz Cafe, we found ourselves once again in the government district. Again in the past, but this time during Hator’s reign. During the troubles. It was all anyone around us was talking about. The tenor of it didn’t seem to match what we remembered of our history lessons , things were worse even than we had been taught. We set off through the district and saw there was something wrong with the Palace district wall. There were bodies hanging from it. Mostly subhumans, but some demihumans as well. This didn’t fit at all. None of Hator’s orders had ever really been carried out, as far as anyone could remember.

Something was walking along the wall, and behind its passage the wall was unmarked by any of the horrors of the area we have found. We wisely decide to approach the entity. The entity apparently a godling usually assumed to be a servant of Eiram, but who is actually a leftover godling of Takara who is responsible for keeping the laws of reality in order. This is a memory of a shard of an event that didn’t happen and it was here correcting the error when the memory shard was made.

It seems that Hator made a loop in his lifeline, which is against the rules so it was here fixing it as best it could. It wouldn’t offer help to any of us who were affiliated with a deity, but Terabeth’ei is not, so we moved away and he talked to her.

We then decided to find the soul bits of the Eater that might be here, which required combining the two bits we had already. They led us to a surprising reunion with my second. It turned out that he had defeated the piece of the Eater in this shard. We then discussed how to find our way out and he suggested going somewhere no one in the construct would have seen, so we suggested the Fosukubuzu compound. It turns out that that was not the case. We entered the compound, and after making it through the outer doors found ourselves in a kind of records room. In this room we found a construct that was clearly made by the Builder. It seems we didn’t get so far away from him after all.

Byron's View: The Builder's Origin?

Having escaped the void, we found ourselves in a familiar alleyway. We were in the Government District, though things were not quite right. it was night, and it was clearly quite some time ago. A memory, then. We approached the only lit building (also the only one which seemed to have any real substance to it.) Upon entering who should we find, but a much younger version of the Builder dressed in his seer’s robes. Varus immediately joined him in conversation. The rest of us took the opportunity to look around. This house was clearly a place that had suffered from bad fortune. Cinnamon, Leo and Alice decided to explore the basement while I continued to look around the upstairs and Varus questioned the builder in the alley.

There was then a commotion from below, so I went to investigate, and found the three of them fighting each other. I tried my best to keep the damage to a minimum and was somewhat successful. It seems that this basement was an earlier iteration of the Dollmaker’s training ground. she was making eyes, and had apparently come across a powerful magical eye to study somehow that caused this whole hullabaloo. I crushed it, and we returned to the ground floor where we studied the builder more closely. It was here that we determined that this was the place that the builder became The Builder, as a tiny sliver of Macha was implanted into him.

We allowed the memory of the Builder to go on his way, and I determined a way out. Simply enter the Cafe at the end of the alley, close the door and then exit to where it took us.

A Short History of Two Kalbs, A Bard, and a Concerned Prostitute: Part 54

The fazuku butzu compound seemed… prosaic. The only difference between this place and any other fort was the bureaucracy. Files upon files of items to be repaired and the quiet of a place with no one else besides us. Except for one. We had cornered the Builder’s construct, an amalgamation that looked like a perversion of the god-touched himself. We launched a series of questions to ascertain his motives, but it became apparent that it was just a puppet of the Builder.

In fact, the Builder literally took control of it and we had the strangest conversation where the Builder laid down all of his cards. Apparently his goal was to seal the hole himself and ascend in the process. In doing so, he would become a force “for humanity”. We obviously had serious reservations about this process, but the other options were simply not good either. The Wizards wanted to drain Maka of her energy and would allow the world to become ground zero to speak. The Dollmaker wishes for Maka to return. Of the others, we could build a pump to force back the Void and then hoping that Gelt would be able to save us if all else failed.

After talking about this a great deal, we put things to a vote and decided against the Builder in favor of the pump. Gods help us if we are wrong in that decision.

A Short History of Two Kalbs, A Bard, and a Concerned Prostitute: Part 52

The issue with winning in a duel is that there are rules. And rules are meant to be a gigantic pain without a proper lawyer. Makka’s Avatar was slowly making her way towards us as it finally dawned that we had not yet won. The dragon wasn’t dead and Byron hadn’t won. After much debate with the official, we reframed the battle as one to be done in the Astral. The Girl opened a temporary gate (thank goodness) before we went through.

Rules are a strange thing. When broken so consistently, it becomes a rule in and of itself. I watched Byron and then Leo disappear into a hole dug in the ground. Visualizing it ourselves, the rest of us followed. A new arena was being arranged and I couldn’t help but feel that this was a silly dream. What are we doing here? Then Cinnamon appeared and I felt myself give a sigh of relief. Cinnamon! I gazed at the tower and wondered…

Insatiable Hunger

Why did I come here? I don’t belong with these people, fighting this fight. I’m useless. Sure, I sing a good song, play a good tune, and can help make people feel a little better, a little wiser, a little less afraid, but really I’m freaking useless! Hell, when I didn’t know what else to do, I ran! I never even thought to check on Lady C. Maybe if I had done so instead of running, she we could have had a chance. She’s fighting. She doesn’t even know time is passing. But her body wont last, I know! Dammit! Fuck this! We can’t even kill the 99.9% dead dragon, and one of ours is in the damn tree, and I don’t even know what else can go wrong. Oh, right, little girl. Ugh. Coward. That’s what I am. And weak. I couldn’t stave off the hunger. I remember eating… oh gross! I’m going to go puke now.

In which I get and then lose an incredibly bad Idea
or, a day like any other?

So, I suddenly got the idea that it might be a good idea to follow up on the divine destruction zone in the Lady Zeitghast’s manor, just before we go into Averton. This of course sparked a huge argument with everyone, except strangely Varus. This probably should have been a clue that this was a bad idea, but I get these enthusiasms sometimes, you know.

In any case we managed to talk our way back into the Lady’s manor, and even to the edge of the zone when I had a realization. Firstly that this was really a bad Idea, and secondly that this would work on anything with a divine connection. Like big flashy crystal trees that wizards made. So, that’s something at least. now we know what to do with them if we can move them in a completely non practical manner through the city…

The battle with the eater
or, I'm a dwagon!

We made our way to the market square, as agreed to in the terms of the agreement. As the appointed hour approached it was revealed to us who the eater’s second was: The Dollmaker. How fun. Also, it turns out that the eater is a dragon. a very pestilent dragon. that is somehow fused with the wizards’ tree. We managed to fight the dragon bravely, and then I called upon the powers that be to even up the odds, and I’m now a dragon, admittedly a small one. We have got the eater down to its very last, but it is being sustained by the tree somehow. which is unfortunately allowed by the terms of the contest. Now it seems we must contend with the second….

A Short History of Two Kalbs, A Bard, and a Concerned Prostitute: Part 51

It was a Dragon. A scaborous thing covered in swarms of creatures that tangle and disentangled from it’s hide. Worse still was the tree it dragged from below. We were buffeted by it’s roar as we hurriedly tried to get in position. I didn’t stop summoning as many creatures as I could. Boars and lantern archons danced everywhere.

We felt the first wave of it’s breath hit us and we could feel something inside us begin to pop out like a spider crawling. It was horrible and we were out of our league. Only the sheer number of us and our connection to the Gods kept us pushing. Each time it fed on us, the wounds we dealt were reversed and it was quickly becoming apparent that we were past approaching a precipice. I ran forward as Byron chewed on a stick and laid my hands on the Dragon, forcing a Curse to redirect it’s hunger to protect us.

I screamed as I felt something so intrinsic to me get torn away as I collapsed on the ground. The dragon fell as well and I staggered up, dragging my way to Lacy C, who had begun vomiting blood. Some kind of condition was eating away at her and I used what knowledge of alchemy I could to pick the right vials to push her away from death’s edge. I was utterly exhausted. Byron was a Gold Dragon. Where was Cinnamon?

That’s when I heard Her stand up and I turned to see her clap slowly from the balcony. I drew what reserves of power I had left here as I waited for Makka’s Avatar to make her move.


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