The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
it's some MORE belief
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
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It's a......

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...lighter?
What's something like THIS doing in Realm? At the bottom of the ocean, no less?


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After all, what would anyone need to light down here?
It's not like there are cigarettes in Realm or anything-


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it
works
underwater
?


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wait, isn't that... what happened?

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it seems so clear when you look into the flame

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But it's not. You know that didn't happen, because you went back. You saw for yourself, your house was still standing.

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So now this just begs the question, how did you-
"Alex! I think I got 'em all, are there any in that cave? If there aren't let's go!"
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
>Show mermaid the lighter!
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
HIDE IT AND ACT LIKE NOTHING HAPPENED
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
EAT THE LIGHTER
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Do a quick look for souls and other cool treasures, if you don't see anything just head out.
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
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You scan the cave, looking for any treasures that may pop out at you, but no luck. You head back to the entrance of the cave, quickly hiding the lighter beneath your fins before Mermaid can see.

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"So there's nothin' in there we want?"
Well, there's nothing in there that *I* want. All the treasure looks too heavy to carry with us on our mission, anyhow.
"Yeah, that's true. Might be a good idea to take a few coins with us, though, so I think I'll scoop some up into a pouch and then we can go."
Fair enough.


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With that, the two of you leave the cave, its pleasant light becoming more unnerving without its occupant.
The rippling glow of the pearls dwindles behind you, and the dark of the tunnels pulls you back into its comforting embrace.


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Hey, Mermaid.
"What's up, Alex?"
How many of these souls do you think will remember who they used to be?
"... I have no idea. I hadn't thought about that."
Well, I just realized, some of these might be important people where I'm from. If they remember who they were, that could really be critical to issues on Earth, perhaps even in Realm.
"Huhhhhh... I dunno about that. I guess it's possible. We're not worrying about that, though, right now we're just worrying about saving these souls in the first place."


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Eventually, the dim glow of the pearls of Urchin's Dock come into view, a much too welcome sight after the last few things you had to witness. As you approach the edge of town, Mermaid clears her throat.
"So, since we have defeated Dragon, that whole area is basically free to the town, now."
...Okay?
"Not only does that mean people here with scavenging licenses can now go raid that cave for the treasure we left behind, but also, it's now possible for the residents of this town to make plans to expand the town to that cave."
Uh huh...
"Basically, what I'm saying is, we're gonna go drop off our stuff at my apartment for a moment and go meet up with the mayor. Gotta tell her that cave is officially Dragon-free, now. She'll probably even reward us!"


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OH MAN THIS IS REALLY BORING

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You can't even remember what happened in the Town Hall. Mermaid dragged you in because you defeated Dragon so you have legal involvement but Mermaid just handled everything anyway and- ow.
Well, now you're in Mermaids apartment. It's cozy, but a little barren. It kind of shows that she doesn't stay here often.

"So, we're about ready to set off to our next destination."
And where would that be, Mermaid?
"Another town, called Nori Island. It's a few hours swim away from Urchins Dock, though, it's above the sea level. It also happens to be in the middle of nowhere, so I'd really prefer we start going there after we've gotten some rest."
Oh...
"Yeah, so we should probably wrap up any business we have here before we leave. Maybe get some supplies or something. Can you think of anything we better do before we leave this place?"
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
No, nothing. But will you be able to travel around Nori Island easily when you get there? Above sea level sounds kinda like land.
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Nah, but try talking to the souls while you travel. It's a ways away, right? See if you can get any kind of useful response or if all they'll do is swim about on their own.
~◕ w◕~
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Forget everything, just go to sleep.
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
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No... you're way too tired... We still have jars and stuff to catch the souls in, and we still have food to last us for another week, at most...
"Yeah... Arright then. Let's just get some sleep."



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demon


our sister


come back to us


mother misses you very much



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Well, there's really not much of a reason to stick around here. You begin your trek to Nori Island.


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So, Mermaid. We still don't have a map.
"Nope. Don't worry, there's a way to find this place. Hold tight for a moment."



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Mermaid makes her way to a patch of seaweed, reaches down and plucks a piece from the gritty seabed. She holds it up, and lets go. A moment passes, as she watches the seaweed float away from her, before clearing her throat.
"There. That's the direction we're going. Just take that piece of seaweed with you, and if you feel unsure about our direction, let the seaweed show you the way."
You take the seaweed, and stash it under your fin. It's strange... it seems the seaweed doesn't float along the same path as the tides...



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Thus the two of you set off for Nori Island, staying close to the surface, but never above it. The sea remains desolate, though flecked with aquatic plant life...

There's no one else out here?
No homes in this uncharted territory?
Is it simply the fact that no one dares to live a life so detached that one would only ever meet wayward travelers, or is there something more? Surely making a map of even the route from the sea to Urchins Dock, and from there to Nori Island and back would not be an impossible task...

On second thought, it may just be the fact that there are not even any fish to be found in these seas. One would have to subsist entirely on kelp if one were to inhabit this endless, churning ocean.



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It takes a long while, and your muscles ache from how long you've had to swim, but...
"Ah... 'ey, Alex, you see that? We're almost there."
Mermaid chuckles, her voice tinged with a dulled excitement.
"C'mon, let's go up to the surface and get a good look at the place."



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Sure enough, you've made it to the island-
but you can't tell if you're impressed or not.

It seems a tree once had ambitions of sailing,
So it took to the sea with a boat of hollowed coral.

Along the way, it grew, and as it did, so did its boat.
Birds of all kinds saw to live with the tree on its boat,
adding to the base with twigs and mud originally meant for nests.

Eventually, as the island made its way across the sea,
it ran afoul of a forest of seaweed.
The boat was covered in layer upon layer of slithery plant life,
anchored firmly to the seafloor that lay below,
and the tree withered away, trapped on the grave it had sailed on.

Everything here is just various shades of grey, including the sky and sea.
The smell of salt and rotting plant matter permeates the area.
Despite that, it's strangely comforting to be here.

You made it to Nori Island.
Now, what's the plan?
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Well, it was Mermaid's idea to come here. Somehow it slipped your mind to ask her why until now, so you probably want to do that?
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Visit every single house~ :D
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Aaaaa I finally caught up with A Different Realm and this despite apparently having read them before??? Your art is wonderful and this is a really enjoyable adventure

You're probably gonna have to visit either the fishers who were running into lost souls or the shopkeeps that they might have sold them to, so I guess go to those places first.
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
I liked the latest update; the way you wrote about nori island reminded me of the way gentrigger wrote/writes about songs we sing/eskero and that made me think how you two could make a good tag team in a collaboration

>go out on a limb. bark up the wrong tree. leaf
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Does anyone still live here? Or, uh, exist here, if "living" doesn't quite apply?
~◕ w◕~
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
no, they're all deceaseduous
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
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Oh man... it's gonna take a little bit to get used to moving out of water again... actually, why are we here? Aren't all the lost souls underwater?
"Yeah, but 'underwater' is huge, Alex. The people of this town search these seas, so if anyone's found anything, that means we have a starting point."



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Alright, where are we starting?
"Well, I think we should go ahead and start with the worst place for there to be something we want- Harpies Roost. The place is a little bit, uh... exclusive."



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"can i help you"


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"Yes, can you tell us about that little glowy thing you've got under the case, there? And, make it quick, please, we'd rather know before the afternoon rush."
The bartender snorts.
"seagull got it. was out fishing, two horizons north."
Mermaid grimaces. "Were there any more, out there? Did she say?"



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"DID I SAY, WHAT?"


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"I REALLY HOPE YOU AIN'T FORGOTTEN HOW MUCH WE DON'T LIKE OUTSIDERS TRYIN TO EDGE IN ON OUR BUSINESS.
THE WATERS 'ROUND HERE ARE FOR RESIDENTS OF NORI ISLE TA FISH IN, ONLY!"
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Tell them of the importance of your mission- it effects everyone, including YOU!
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Yeah, that's fine, we respect that, it's not fish we're after.

If they'd respect an authority like Heaven, say he sent you out here to find souls. Just... don't do that if they're not the type to show Heaven much deference.
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Tell them that thing's not a fish, it's a pollutant and you're trying to clean it up.
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RE: The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea
Threaten with extreme violence
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