Seken

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.

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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.

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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.

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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…

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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.

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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…

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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….

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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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A Short History of Two Kalbs, A Bard, and a Concerned Prostitute: Part 50

We argued for most of the day. Over the next best course of action and over Leo’s new bloodthirstiness. I hated being here, in this terrible place where the only things that seemed to grow here is bloodshed and death. We departed at night and traveled in stealth to the market square. We somehow managed to make it work before we encountered The Strategist again with a proverbial gauntlet thrown. We had some time to decide on Byron’s duel with the Eater and Gelt watching on.

We finally agreed to the terms of the duel with both sides equipped as best they could encounter. We also managed to squeeze in safe passage until the next day so we could actually fight this battle. Also the Exiled King was to be our second, which is passing strange. We counted the hours until dawn, casting every preparation spell we could and every divination I was able to muster.

When we arrived at the square, I saw the Little Girl standing on the balcony, smiling at us. We felt the ground tremble. The duel between the God’s chosen has begun.

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A Short History of Two Kalbs, A Bard, and a Concerned Prostitute: Part 49

Our faded map was the only guide we had as we traveled towards the Eaters territory. It became more and more evident that we were out of our league. We’ve probably known this for days honestly. We planned on avoiding the vampires as we traveled northeast, heading towards the gnoll who we suspected was the Strategist.

However, we were being trailed by humanoid gangers trailing us into a square. We spotted the trap laid for us- a spellcaster and a group of enslaved humanoids. I shivered at the thought of more violence, but things were answered for us when we had to proceed further. The battle was chaotic. People running everywhere while I tried to keep as many from fighting and killing. I think Cinnamon and the others ran south after the leader while I saw Leo slaughter an old man.

There would be words later, but we managed to drive away the crowd here. We traveled a little before we spotted the lieutenant on the wallside. I tried to cast my spell, but it failed dramatically as she managed to cause it to reverberate back. People talked a while with the enemy while I desperately tried to figure out a way out of this new trap. When it seemed like we had come to an impasse, I projected my energy to stay the hands of as many as I could. The others somehow managed to push her back and we retreated south.

We managed to find Cinnamon again after tracking her down and we holed up for the night.

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