Eagle Time

Full Version: The Ballad of Adler Young, Canto 2.5
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>Angela: Oh - Em - GEE!!!!!!1!!1! Did you see that? The way Sam threw that rock. All you did was make a few lewd hand gestures and already they're fighting over you. Things are moving so fast. Become so overwhelmed with conflicting romantic feelings that you start convulsing and foaming at the mouth.
>Ixies: She's doing the thing again! Quickly gather Angela up and take her somewhere she can cool off. Wonder why this keeps happening.
>Sam: End your demonstration with a big, dramatic flourish. Those drama lessons in school finally paid off.
>Adler: Be awed to the point of slack-jawed speechlessness.
>Typantronn: . . . "So, anyone want to bet that-"
>Adler: "Don't you dare!"
>Adler: While impressive Sam's trick reveals to your dismay that he's not wearing any underwear.
>Sam: Awkward, laundry day is.
>Angela noises: Be heard from offscreen.
>Training montage: Begin.
Adler: You can do it Adler you are the best, no one is ever gonna keep you down!
Sam: He is getting......better? Keep up the the exercises. 
Adler: You are covered in bruises by the end of the training, these are your battle scars! Wear them with pride!
Sam: Become really, really embarrassed being near Adler, he's just plain terrible. Most of his bruises came from the fact he kept doing the exercises wrong.
(Laughter) From somewhere deep in the forest, erupt.
(Hudalaleigh) Be heard in the land.
(HM King Adler II) Be startled by the voice, which is familiar and yet not familiar.
(Adoyret Sam) Be startled by the voice, which is familiar and yet not familiar.
(Arrows) Start behaving in strange ways.
SpoilerShow

Quote:>Angela: Oh - Em - GEE!!!!!!1!!1! Did you see that? The way Sam threw that rock. All you did was make a few lewd hand gestures and already they're fighting over you. Things are moving so fast. Become so overwhelmed with conflicting romantic feelings that you start convulsing and foaming at the mouth.
>Ixies: She's doing the thing again! Quickly gather Angela up and take her somewhere she can cool off. Wonder why this keeps happening.

1002froth.gif

"ZOMG!!!1!!1!!!!" Angela squealed. "Did U C teh way Sam thru that rock? There already fighting over meeeee, its all happening to fast!!"

She began convulsing strangely and foaming at the mouth as a few other Ixies flew up, exclaiming "not again" and "time for thee to lie down."

"AHEM," Sam coughed to get my attention as the Ixies escorted their quivering comrade back to the grassy top of the dolmen. "A final onslaught, hit me with. As many arrows as you can."

Once again I raised my bow and let fly a stream of arrows as rapidly as I could.

Quote:>Sam: End your demonstration with a big, dramatic flourish.
>Adler: While impressive Sam's trick reveals to your dismay that he's not wearing any underwear.
>Angela noises: Be heard from offscreen.

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Sam flipped over in mid-air and deflected all of the arrows with an incredible flying spinning kick.

"Dude," I said, quoting my late brother as I turned away from the spectacle. "Haven't you ever heard of underwear?"

"Too restricting it is," Sam remarked as he landed on the ground. "Stop wearing it, I recommend you to as well."

"EEEEE," Angela squealed loudly from the dolmen.

"So .. now that the power of Lengra-Cha Vulpitanian Style you have witnessed, ready to begin your training in earnest now are you?" Sam asked.

"Sure," I said optimistically. "Let's do this!"

Quote:>Training montage: Begin.
Adler: You can do it Adler you are the best, no one is ever gonna keep you down!
Adler: You are covered in bruises by the end of the training, these are your battle scars! Wear them with pride!
Sam: Become really, really embarrassed being near Adler, he's just plain terrible. Most of his bruises came from the fact he kept doing the exercises wrong.

1002train.gif

He showed me a basic punching and kicking routine and told me to repeat it as many times as I could. I made up a little song to help me keep in a rhythm..

You're an elf, oh yeahh ... no wicked curse will ever keep you down!
You're an elf, oh yeahh ... soon your enemies will hit the ground!


"No singing," Sam snapped as he bapped me with his staff. "Attack to a choreographed beat, your enemies will not. Like this sweep your leg. No, like this. Continue."

I trained furiously until Sam told me to stop. I was bruised, sore and completely winded.

"Whew!" I wheezed as I stretched and rubbed my muscles. "I ache all over! That was a grueling afternoon, but I feel like I've made some progress."

"Only half an hour that was," Sam sighed. "From hitting yourself, most of those bruises are, and from moving wrong your soreness comes. Stop you I had to, before seriously hurt yourself you did. Someone so inept, never seen have I. Harder than I expected, this is going to be."

Quote:(Laughter) From somewhere deep in the forest, erupt.
(Hudalaleigh) Be heard in the land.
(HM King Adler II) Be startled by the voice, which is familiar and yet not familiar.
(Adoyret Sam) Be startled by the voice, which is familiar and yet not familiar.

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Before I could be too crestfallen at the Adoyret's low assessment of me, my thoughts were interrupted by a gale of laughter and a loud "HUDALALEIGH!" from somewhere deep in the forest.

"Did you hear that?" I asked, as the last drawn-out cackle reverberated among the tree trunks. "It sounded eerie .. strange .. and yet somehow familiar.."

"Saint Reynard's traditional call it is," Sam murmured suspiciously.
>Strangely familiar stranger wearing a fake moustache: Hoo boyo you've gotten yourself in quite a pickle!
>Sam: Recognize your old partying/sinning buddy, use his appearance for didactic purposes.
>Adler and Sam: Look in the direction of the noise. Who or what is that?
>Estvan: Sneak up behind them. "Hey, what'cha looking at?"
>One tree to another: "Should we really be letting all these people come and go as they please?" "It's fine, we were only told to keep Adler here."
>Estvan: Right, now that the preliminary japes are out of the way, punch Adler so hard he's knocked off his feet. What in the netherhells was he thinking?! How did he manage to screw up so badly? He got two armies and an entire city killed in the most unseelie way imaginable. Does he even have the slightest idea of the sheer magnitude of what he's done?
>Sam: Restrain Estvan to keep him from pummeling your pupil to a pulp.
>Addler: You are so done with this.

>In a fit of 'I am so done with this crap' anger driven trance you actualy block Estvan blows and send him packing.
>Seriously it's almost as if everytime you start having even a hint of control over the situation some mysterious forces just made them spiral out of control.
>Wonder if when Fuma gave you the gift of luck, you shuldnt have enquired if it was going be *good* luck

(Really, let's be fair here: As much as we like to joke about Adler naiveté, incompetence and nicompoopery, and he certainely does have his fair share of those (nevermind the fact that it from our suggestions for now); rereading the narrative, what *really* screwed up him at the worst moment over and over do tend to be elements pretty beyond his control more often than not. Especialy uncontrolled timeskips really.

I mean Addler is hand of the king's hand. He's scheming to retake control of the situation, disinguis fireind or foes, genraly become good at his job... whoops,he goes through a crack, now twenty years have passed, the kingdom is in worse state than ever due to crack appearing (... a plot point that is till dangling and waiting to be resolved btw, just sayin'), the economy is in the crappers, his dear brother is under the twin influences of the Vulipitian and the Queen and he's lost pretty much all credibility and inititative at this point.

Addler is about to irect the battle for the throne, Estmere is already dead but at least he's got a chnace to take the trhone while avoiding the horrible scourge that'd be the plague o' battle he decided not to use anyway ... nope he wakes up from battle trance, the plague of battle was released anyway and he's getting cursed to stay in that ruined city without having any control of it. (It's not technically a timeskippbut given it involves the character loosing all control, perception or agency for a period of time, it kind of is narrtivlay speaking)

Addler is at a pretty low point already, he's lost about everything but hey at least he's got a few lowfolk and the ixies willign to work for him. he's got a plan to use one enemy against another, he might just turn things around or at least buy himself some time.... but nope ! He steps through faerie the portal, one year time skip, The battle is already over, his would be minion nderstnadably gave up on him, all his plans are now good for nothing, and he's back to square minus one.

Let's be honnest, Adller kind of earned his freaked out desesperate laughter here.

Which sorts of bring me to a second point here.

So folks, not to say but in order for some plot or at least charater develloepment to happen once in a while it might be a good idea if we could sometime, jsut sometime, agree to set aside the obvious jokes, slapstick abd focussing on the peanut gallery suggestions to privilieging moving on with things a bit. Just sayin'.)
I have to agree with smuchmuch here. I liked the earlier part of Ballad and its courtly intrigue where it felt like we were an active participant in the events, but recently Adler has turned into a side character in his own story. I've suggested before that he should start acting more seriously, and it feels frustrating to rebuild only to get returned to square one by powers beyond his control. I know that the Ballad is prequel to another work, and it makes me wonder if there's much story left to be told here?
Well, from what I rememeber in Xandar sage, being stuck alone in a dead city by a curse was were he needed to get untill


spoiler from Xandar saga and by extension the balladShow

an event which does happen a few centuries down the line later in universe.



The way said event played out in there implies he'll get some lowfolk minions to work for him one way or another (I really though Ethel and Percy would be the start of that hence why the one year timeskipp and thir desrtion kinda took me by surprise here), that he'll become more in control, that queen Edessae has ben dealth with or deposed in some (at least symbolic) way.



So that's not entirely surprising he would be set back to that point, and I understand a few more setbacks and timeskips will happen (since we have a couple of centuries in universe to kill) an that's fine, narratively... it's just that now that's he's there and it feels like the balad has mostmly reached the point it needed to get at, may I humbly suggest those skips and turns may happen in a way that don't feel like they undermine the character progress and agency as much ?



And seeing as this is a collaborative forum adventure and our author is making a (commendable) effort to stick tot he spirirt of such adventures, not to bypass ugeestions and use them as the bases of the narrative, I ask my fellow players if they would cnsider that maybe sometime we tried to coordinate rather than suggest at cross purpose. ot allt he time, japes and misunderstanding are all great and good fun but jsut once in a while, to achieve some mesure of narrative progress.
(New Figure) Emerge from Forest
(New Figure) Pose!
(New Figure) Reveal, with Crystal Clear Prose ® why Adler should get on with it.
(New Figure) Promise Reward ® with Eyebrow-Wiggle ® if Adler buckles down.
(Sam) Grudgingly admit the New Figure has a point.
(Adler) Be Inspired ®
(Montage) Take Place.

Quote:>Adler and Sam: Look in the direction of the noise. Who or what is that?
>Estvan: Sneak up behind them. "Hey, what'cha looking at?"
New Figure) Emerge from Forest
>Sam: Recognize your old partying/sinning buddy

"From that direction it came," Sam muttered, nodding his head toward a muffled cackle and a rustling of underbrush.

We both stared intently in the direction of the sound, but it went silent.

1009whatlook.gif

"Sure an' what is it yer lookin' at so intently, lads?" a scoundrelly voice asked right behind us.

I jumped, but Sam merely turned and said, "Estvan Silverbrush." Was there a hint of nervousness in his voice? "A long time it has been."

"Sam O'Yamm," Estvan replied. "Sure an' it's the Adoyret ye are now, is it? So ye returned to the monastery an' continued yer studies in spoite of all me sage advoice."

Quote:>One tree to another: "Should we really be letting all these people come and go as they please?"
>Estvan: Right, now that the preliminary japes are out of the way, punch Adler so hard he's knocked off his feet. What in the netherhells was he thinking?! How did he manage to screw up so badly? He got two armies and an entire city killed in the most unseelie way imaginable. Does he even have the slightest idea of the sheer magnitude of what he's done?
(New Figure) Reveal, with Crystal Clear Prose ® why Adler should get on with it.

"Where have you been?" I asked, with no slight degree of perturbation.

"Begorrah, me boyo, sure an that's an interestin' question," Estvan replied with a smirk. "One which oi could just as easily be askin' yerself - except it's knowin' oi am, with a fair degree o' certainty, that it's roight here ye've been fer almost the whole toime. And not easy fer me to get here either, at all at all. Sure an it seemed loike the forest itself was tryin' to prevent access."

"You won't tell anybody, will you?" the trees rustled plaintively. "We're supposed to be keeping Adler isolated, but both of you foxes were too sneaky."

"Oho, so it's sneaky oi am, is it?" Estvan chuckled. "Loike a Vulpitanian, ye moight say?"

1009blatherskyte.gif

Suddenly he whirled around and clocked me upside the head with his shillelagh. I fell down, both hurt and surprised in equal amounts.

"Ye asked where oi was, ye blatherskyte," Estvan snarled. "Well it's the devil knows how long oi was trapped in a tree BY ME OWN DAUGHTER, and who is it moight've put her up to that, oi wonder?"

He gave me fierce kick in the ribs and kept talking.

"Well, blessin's o' Fuma, fer darlin' Sofie's trap to work, she had to be in there with me. Oi bored the poor lass out o' her skull with daft stories til foinally she could take no more, an' in order to escape she had to release the both of us. Pooked roight off, she did, without even a by-the-bye. Sure an it's worried oi was about the course o' the battle, consarned oi was fer me friend an' protege .."

He kicked me again.

"Oh how oi fretted, me boyo! 'Oi do hope Adler's all roight,' oi said to meself as oi hurried on to Albric Tor, only to foind it poisoned in a green fog o' death .. two armies and a city full o' innocent elves, killed in the most Unseelie manner imaginable .. King Estmere murthered on his throne .. all Faerie in a shambles .. Gaps everywhere .. elves adrift, cut off from home an' from one another .. the Duchess loose .. me lovely woife an' son lost Fuma knows where, maybe aloive an maybe not .. an' all o' this the work o' ONE WHITE FURRED MONSTER! Sure an oi've always trusted the Lady, but sure an she made a mistake with you! A mistake oi'll quickly correct!"

He raised his shillelagh for a crushing blow, and as it came whistling toward me, I wriggled aside. I grabbed the end of the stick as it struck the ground. Before Estvan could react, I yanked his shillelagh away from him, spun around, and whacked him hard right in the knee. He went down with a yelp, and I sprang to my feet.

Quote:>In a fit of 'I am so done with this crap' anger driven trance you actualy block Estvan blows and send him packing.

1009turnabout.gif

I grabbed the Mephitist amulet on his chest and lifted him up by it.

"YOU LEFT WHEN I NEEDED YOU!" I bellowed, thumping him awkwardly in the ribs with the shilleleagh. "THE BATTLE BEGAN SOONER THAN EXPECTED, AND MY TRUSTED ADVISER WAS NOWHERE TO BE FOUND!" (thump thwack) "I DIDN'T KILL ESTMERE! HE WAS ALREADY DEAD! EDESSA KNOWS WHAT HAPPENED, BUT SHE TRAPPED ME HERE AND SPREAD A FALSE RUMOR!" (whack smack) "THE PLAGUE OF BATTLES WAS AN ACCIDENT! I DIDN'T MEAN TO USE IT, BUT THE DUCHESS AND THE VULPITANIANS SET ME UP! AND YOU WEREN'T THERE TO PREVENT IT!" (whump thud) "NOW I'M TRAPPED HERE WITH NO FOOD AND NO CONTACT BUT SAM AND A COUPLE OF LOWFOLK I KEEP LOSING DUE TO TIME SKIPS, AND NO WAY TO CLEAR MY NAME!"

"STOP LAD, STOP!" Estvan shrieked in what seemed to be genuine terror. "Sure an ye've broken me kneecap an' cracked me ribs, an it's ENOUGH! Oi yield! OI YIELD!! Ye'll not beat an old elf to death with his own shillelagh, not if ye claim to be Seelie at all, at all! Please, Adler, have mercy!"

Suddenly I was appalled by the fear in the old tod's eyes, and I dropped him with a shudder.

"Boi the Lady," Estvan groaned as he lay in the grass and clutched his knee. "What is it ye've been teachin' the lad, Sam, ye spalpeen?"
>Sam: You've been teaching Adler how to not be useless in a fight. Why has this not been done before now?
>Sam: It's clear that Adler and Estvan are not happy to see each other. Become a mediator and get them both to calmly explain their respective stories.
>Adler: You're getting real tired of having to repeat this over and over, but fine, story time. Also, be completely shocked at a number of ground breaking revelations Estvan provides.
>Estvan: Be genuinely shocked at what Adler tells you and genuinely upset that all this was going on and you were not aware of it.
>Ixies: Add in information about the part your predecessors played in those events.
(Estvan) Cure yourself in the Long Ago-fashion: spit on it, rub some dirt on it, and walk it off
(HM King Adler) Be still in something of an Irenaeus-type rage.
(HM King Adler) Make some snap, Irenaeus-type decisions as to how to proceed.
(Ixies) Be Baffled and Confused ®
(Ixies) Follow a stream of orders from HM King Adler that are slightly contradictory and confusing
(Sam) Watch all of this with an Inscrutable Expression ®
(Sam) Also take some satisfaction in Estvan getting a food container of Brush-Beat ® opened on him
(Estvan) Manage to get your walking-stick back very subtly.
(Estvan) Recover from the food container of Brush-Beat ® being opened on you surprisingly quickly.
(Bessie) Bzzzzzzzz at the Ixies

Quote:>Sam: You've been teaching Adler how to not be useless in a fight. Why has this not been done before now?
(Sam) Also take some satisfaction in Estvan getting a food container of Brush-Beat ® opened on him

1016teaching.gif

"Not to be useless in a fight I have taught him," Sam explained. "Why before now this was done not, I seriously wonder."

"Sure an' it moight be because scions o' Irenaeus are dangerous enough already!"

"Your ass handed to you, you got," Sam observed with a chuckle. "See the day I thought I would never."

"We'll just add that to the list o' his croimes," Estvan sulked.

"You attacked me, old man," I snapped. "Without warning and for no reason! You jolly well earned your trouncing and I'll gladly give you another if you want it."

Quote:>Sam: It's clear that Adler and Estvan are not happy to see each other. Become a mediator and get them both to calmly explain their respective stories.
>Adler: You're getting real tired of having to repeat this over and over, but fine, story time.
>Estvan: Be genuinely shocked at what Adler tells you and genuinely upset that all this was going on and you were not aware of it.

"Gentlemen, please," Sam sighed, holding up his hand. "Sure I am that just a big misunderstanding this all is. Adler, on the details that during his magickal imprisonment Estvan missed, fill him in."

"Sure an' how d'ye know about moy imprisonment?" Estvan asked suspiciously.

"Many things I know," Sam replied mysteriously. "Ham, all is. Plus, mentioned it a few minutes ago you did."

"I'm not divulging anything until Estvan tells me where he's been all this time," I insisted.

"Foine," Estvan sighed. "As oi recall, twas roight afther that naked buck showed up an' ye all got twitterpated on the funny poipeweed he was smokin. Me lovely daughter Sofie appeared an' lured me away with the call o' daughterly bondin. Sure an' no father's heart can resist that call, bedad! Oi dandled the lass on me knee an' proceeded to tell her stories. O, but she was good! She listened with such rapt attention oi was completely bewitched, an' scarcely noticed the trap closin' about me. WHAM! We were in a stasis spell insoide a tree trunk. One o' the classics from the Long Ago! Sure an' it brings a tear o' proide to me oye to think me wee Sofie could pull off such a magick as that. Oi wonder if she had help.."

"You're rambling," I interrupted, tapping the shillelagh meaningfully against the palm of my hand.

"If oi'm to be afther tellin' o' this story, then begorrah, oi'll tell it in me own way. But ach, oi see yer impatient, so let me see .. oi think oi already told ye how oi cunningly bored the lass beyond her ability to tolerate."

"Are you sure that was deliberate?" I quipped.

"Sure an' if ye want the story told quick, ye'll not be breakin' in with the impertinent interruptions, at all at all. Where was oi? Ah yes. Afther oi escaped from the spell, oi had trouble foindin' me bearings on account o' Faerie itself bein .. BROKEN, afther a manner o' speakin. Oi was in a patch o' woods all hemmed about boy Gaps. Foinally oi came across a few miserable elves huddled in a toiny shack, an' the tale they told me .. well, if they hadn't been elves oi wouldn't have believed it. They said you'd unleashed a Plague o' Battles an' murthered everyone in Albric Tor, an' would've killed every elf livin' if the Queen hadn't used her last scrap o' power to trap ye there. Well, oi did some quick calculations and risked a pook to the top o' the city wall, for oi had to see with me own oyes. Oi figured if the story were false, if oi missed the wall an' fell in the field, twould do me no harm .. but if the tale were true oi'd not want to live anyhow. So oi pooked, an' oi saw, lad. OI SAW."

"I was tricked," I insisted. "I never meant to use the Plague of Battles, but in Ixie showed up right as I went into a battle trance.."

"Trance or no, ye still did it," Estvan glowered. "Sure an yer not Seelie, lad, at all at all. Oi don't know where Yolanda an' Boris are, but if it's killed them ye have, then oi shall never ever forgive ye."

"That they are alive, a feeling I have," Sam remarked. "Ham, all is."

"At that point oi think oi went a wee bit daft," Estvan continued, with a suspicious glare at Sam. "Oi pooked roight into the Gap an' fell through to the lowfolk realm, where oi wandered for who knows how long, til oi almost ran into the blasted Duchess o' Daisies an' her entourage! Begorrah but oi'd have been in for it if they'd caught me! Fortunately they seemed distracted, clearly on the retreat from somethin, so oi was able to hoide til they passed. 'Well Estvan,' oi said to meself, 'the Duchess is loose, an' that's bad. But she's runnin' from somethin' an' that's worse.' Oi recalled that the back door to one o' the Albric Tor scroyin' towers was off this way, so oi figured to sneak up behoind ye an' make ye pay fer yer sins in the Long Ago tradition. But oi found it hard goin' since the forest has been set to guard ye most strictly. Anyway, oi got through, an' here we are."

"Your story now relate," Sam urged me.

"Okay .. well .. after you left, I decided to try to sneak into Albric Tor and parley with Estmere. The Vulpitanians, you see, had dome some sort of history-altering spell that completely deprived Estmere of his elfliness, so he could no longer be king. I thought maybe if I could explain the situation, he could abdicate peacefully and live out a normal lowfolk life span in ease and comfort. Nobody would have to get hurt! So I disguised myself as SALV Fauxfox and infiltrated the city .. but there was a Pie Fight Valkyrie convention going on, and I got distracted."

"Sure an' some of those lasses to great justice to the Valkyrie uniform," Estvan chuckled. "Was Valerie there her own self?"

"I don't know. There was going to be a winner's banquet which I think she was supposed to attend, but I don't remember seeing her at the competition stage."

"More's the pity. Sure an' she was .. or is .. a memorable femme."

"She is," Sam piped up. "Ham, all is. Your story, continue."

"I finally got away from the convention and made my way to the Hall of Ancestors after an Ixie told me Estmere was there. More Ixies met me there and tried to prevent me from entering the Coronation Chamber, but I went in anyway and saw Estmere's corpse sitting in the throne .. gruesomely proving the legend that it will blast any unworthy person who dares to sit in it!"

"Sure an' oi could have told ye that was true," Estvan remarked wryly.

1016reflect.gif

"It was an Ixie who told me where Estmere was .." I mused, as something slowly began to dawn on me. "Ixies were there at the throne .. they told me Queen Edessa had just been there .. an Ixie showed up during the battle and urged me to use the weapon the Duchess had given me .. Ixies prevented me from leaping to my death when I saw what I had done .. at every turn, there have been Ixies! TELL ME WHAT YOU'VE BEEN UP TO!!" I yelled at the Ixies on top of the dolmen.

Quote:>Ixies: Add in information about the part your predecessors played in those events.

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"Weeellll, Sire, tis hard to say exactly who was where and did what when," Typantronn explained with an embarrassed shrug. "We all look so much alike, tis nigh impossible to tell us apart. It seemeth that we were accepting work from all parties. Some of us were spying on thee for the Queen, others spying on thee for the Vulpitanians. All of us were guarding as well as guiding thee in accordance with the aims of The Sisterhood, except where such aims jeopardized thy safety or virility ..."

"HOW COULD YOU DO THAT?" I screeched in exasperation.

"Sugar is one netherhells of a drug, sire," Typantronn admitted. "But we've mended our ways and shall henceforth serve only thee."

"Glazed ham, all is," Sam intoned mystically.

Quote:(Estvan) Manage to get your walking-stick back very subtly.

1016badknee.gif

"Well, lad, oi'm willin' to admit that maybe ye've been a bit of a victim o' circumstance," Estvan sighed from where he sat on the grass, rubbing his knee. "Now if you'll just be givin' me back me shillelagh, we'll let boygones be boygones."

"I'm not giving this back just for you to hit me again with it," I scowled, clutching the stick tighter.

"Come on, boyo, sure an' ye've grievously injured me! Begorrah, oi may be crippled fer loife, an' oi need me shillelagh to stand up!"

"You haven't said you won't hit me," I noted, turning to hold the shillelagh farther away from him.

"DAMN IT LAD, OI NEED ME STICK," Estvan gekkered angrily.
>Adler: Make it absolutely clear that you are not giving him his shillelagh back until he says out loud that he won't hit you with it. Actually, that he won't hit you period.
>Estvan: Glare at Adler and fume for a while, then finally relent. You're more hurt than he is and another round would not end well for you anyway.
>Estvan: You're willing to believe that Adler was just a patsy in all this and did not intend the pain, death, and destruction he caused, but that being said, he was still at the heart of it and it was his hands that caused it and his hands the blood is on, one way or another there will be a reckoning for that. Even if it's only from Fuma herself. So, what now? Before you are willing to even stand on the same continent as Adler, you demand to know, what is he going to do to FIX THIS?
>Adler: Finally you can show off that you aren't an incompetent buffoon! Estvan mentioned that he saw the Duchess and her cronies fleeing something? It was Bonsai and his tree army. A tree army that you tricked into attacking the Duchess and dismantling her interests.
>Estvan: *look around at the tree army imprisoning Adler* "And how did that work out for you?"
>Adler: Point out it was going fine (at least it was under control) untill you suffered a random portal time lapse.
>You really need to find a way to deal with those or at least account for them in the future. Any suggestions would be welcome
>Speaking of... how exactly is the whole 'tears in the fabric of faerie' thing evolving ?
Sam: Start brewing some tea, ham flavored green tea. Offer cups to both Adler and Estvan.
Adler: Wretch when you taste the tea.
Estvan: Drink it dislike it, but you're thirsty so suck it up and down it.
Sam: Begin explaining to the two that they have both made mistakes, but now is the time to focus on the current goal of destroying their mutual foes.
(Estvan) Offer to teach Adler the principles of Dynamic Tension.
(Adler) Ponder: do you want to be a 98-pound weakling?
(Estvan) Quietly try to take your stick back.
(Adler) Play keep-away from Estvan with a soupcon of cruelty.
(Estvan) Grow a bit more flustered without your stick.
(Sam) Deduce just why Estvan is so desperate to get his stick back.
(Sam) See Signs as to what happens if Estvan doesn't get it back.
(Adler) Feel the stirrings of Power and Cruelty as you watch Estvan's condition.

Quote:>Adler: Make it absolutely clear that you are not giving him his shillelagh back until he says out loud that he won't hit you with it. Actually, that he won't hit you period.
(Estvan) Offer to teach Adler the principles of Dynamic Tension.
(Adler) Play keep-away from Estvan with a soupcon of cruelty.
(Estvan) Grow a bit more flustered without your stick.

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"Well, if that's going to be your attitude then I'm not giving it back," I sneered.

"Sure an oi'm sorry, boyo," Estvan whimpered. "But oi NEED me stick. Please give it back."

"It's a nice stick," I mused. "I'm starting to like it. I think I might just keep it for myself."

"NO! Ye can't do that at all, at all," Estvan gekkered feebly. "Please oh please boyo, give it back. Oi'll waste away an doie without it. Come on now, sure an if ye give it back oi'll teach ye the Saint Reynard Course o' Dynamic Japes!"

"Self defense, already I am teaching him," Sam interjected.

"The Saint Reynard Course is boy no means self-defense," Estvan protested. "But sure it's cram packed with all the voital skills an elf o' distinction would need! Are ye toired o' lettin' lowfolk boss ye around? Oi can show ye -"

"If you want your shillelagh back, you have to promise not to hit me," I demanded.

"Sure lad, sure, oi won't hit ye," Estvan groveled. "Just give me back me wee shillelagh."

"You have to SWEAR it," I insisted.

Quote:>Estvan: Glare at Adler and fume for a while, then finally relent. You're more hurt than he is and another round would not end well for you

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"Oi just told ye oi wouldn't hit ye," Estvan growled, giving me a dark look. "Elves do not loye, boyo, or would ye be afther doubtin' me word?"

"You have to SWEAR that you won't hit me or otherwise harm me," I persisted. "Or you'll never touch this stick again."

"Swearin o' the oaths is un-elfly," he protested.

"Guess I just got me a fine new shillelagh then," I scoffed.

He glared at me for a long, uncomfortable minute. I could see anger and resentment in his eyes .. and behind them, something else .. pain? Fear?? I had never noticed how OLD Estvan was. I guess I had never really looked that closely at him before. The realization began to disturb me, a little. I crossed my arms and turned away, trying to play it cool.

"Foine," Estvan sighed. "You win. Oi swear before Fuma, by oak an' by thorn, that oi won't harm a hair on yer head -"

"That you won't harm ME in any way," I corrected.

"That oi won't harm ye in any way," he concluded with an even darker glower. "Are ye satisfoid?"

"That's binding," I said, as I handed Estvan's shillelagh back to him.

As soon as he touched it, his eyes brightened and his ears perked up. He grasped it with both hands and hauled himself to his feet.

"Everything that's happened," I said, cautiously. "It wasn't my fault."

Quote:>Estvan: You're willing to believe that Adler ... did not intend the pain, death, and destruction he caused, but ... it was his hands that caused it and his hands the blood is on, one way or another there will be a reckoning for that ... demand to know, what is he going to do to FIX THIS?
>Adler: Estvan mentioned that he saw the Duchess and her cronies fleeing something? It was Bonsai and his tree army. A tree army that you tricked into attacking the Duchess and dismantling her interests.
>Estvan: *look around at the tree army imprisoning Adler* "And how did that work out for you?"

"Sure, oi'm willin to believe twas all just a horrible accident," he shrugged wryly. "But me next question is, what is it yer plannin' to DO about it? How is it yer gonna make amends, boyo?"

"I haven't been idle since the disaster at Albric Tor," I stated proudly. "Remember how you saw the Duchess fleeing in such a panic that she didn't even notice you? Well, that was entirely due to my efforts. You see, what she was running from was a Shrub army which was coming for me, but I tricked them into attacking her and disrupting her operations in Percysthorpe."

"Sure an' would that be the same verdant army that surrounds yer prison roight now?" Estvan quipped, looking around. "A fleein' Duchess isn't exactly a defeated Duchess. Meanwhoile you, me lad, are trapped. Oi can't say as that's a foine job at all, at all."

Quote:>Adler: Point out it was going fine (at least it was under control) untill you suffered a random portal time lapse.
>You really need to find a way to deal with those or at least account for them in the future. Any suggestions would be welcome

"Look," I sighed. "Things were going well. I had some lowfolk lackeys and an almost foolproof strategy, but it all fell apart when I nipped back to Faerie to make some explosives, and experienced a teporal discrepancy which had me returning here a year after the battle was over! If I had been here to supervise, things would have gone a lot better! But as it was, no sooner had I turned around than my minions had gotten married and the forest had surrounded me! These time jumps are a problem! Is there any way to avoid them?"

"Sure, boyo," Estvan explained. "Just don't travel between worlds an' ye'll have no problem with 'em at all, at all."

I looked crestfallen at him while he snickered. "Seriously?"

"Aye, that's the foolproof method," he chuckled. "Sure there's another way, but it involves a bit o' math, an oi never had a head fer figures. An oye fer figures, sure, but that's an entoirely different subject." he added with a wink. "If ye must travel twixt worlds, it helps if ye Pook rather than usin' the Gates."

Quote:Sam: Start brewing some tea, ham flavored green tea. Offer cups to both Adler and Estvan.
Adler: Wretch when you taste the tea.
Estvan: Drink it dislike it, but you're thirsty so suck it up and down it.
Sam: Begin explaining to the two that they have both made mistakes, but now is the time to focus on the current goal of destroying their mutual foes.

"Gentlemen," Sam interrupted as he held two steaming cups of tea out to Estvan and myself. "Glad to see I am that your disagreement you can overcome. Some tea, please have. Mend your wounds, it will."

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I sipped the tea and almost gagged. "UGH! What is this?"

"Ham, all is," Sam intoned mystically.

"Soup, is what oi would have called it," Estvan opined as he savored the brew's salty, meaty taste.

"Drink up," Sam insisted. "All better, your boo-boos it will make. When healed you are, then time it will be to move past your past mistakes, and upon defeating your mutual enemies, your efforts focus."

"Have we a mutual enemy?" Estvan mused aloud.

"The Duchess, maybe," I suggested. "You seem to have an old grudge with her, and she's the one who gave me the Plague of Battles in the first place."

"Aye, but twasn't the Duchess that put me sweet Sofie up to the task o' trappin her dear old Papa in a tree at all, at all," Estvan muttered with a scowl.

"And it wasn't the Duchess who actually showed up to distract me and make me toss the vial of Plague onto the battlefield," I said, with a glare at my Ixies.

"It wasn't the Duchess who paid most of our contracts," Typantronn explained nervously. "The majority of our work at that time was from ..."

1023uhoh.gif

"VULPITANIANS," we all declared simultaneously.

"Enemies did I say?" Sam waffled. "Goals I meant! On achieving your mutual goals, time it is to focus!"
>Sam: Would they believe that you put poison in their tea and can't beat you up if they want the antidote? Sodium monoglutamate is bad for you after all, so it's a "sort of" poison.

You know, we've been told that the Duchess is a bad person but onscreen she hasn't done anything that objectionable. She schemes but so do everyone, so is there more to it?
I've been a dedicated reader even if I don't post. So.. four?
(10-24-2019, 07:56 PM)tronn Wrote: [ -> ]You know, we've been told that the Duchess is a bad person but onscreen she hasn't done anything that objectionable. She schemes but so do everyone, so is there more to it?

Estvan knows stories about the Duchess from way back! Now would be (ahem) a perfect time for you guys to suggest a few blood-curdling anecdotes for him to relate.

hint hint
(Estvan) Pull a stack of TALES OF THE DUCHESS scrolls from your Elfintory.
(Estvan) Show the scroll regarding SLAVERY! (Scantily clad femmefur in chains being WHIPPED!)
(Estvan) Show the scroll regarding CANNIBALISM! (Femmefur recoiling from a sinister pot BOILING OVER)
(Estvan) Show the scroll regarding THE BEVERAGE THAT KILLS! (Persoc-Itoome bottle in a SKELETAL PAW)
(Estvan) Show the scroll regarding COUSIN...KISSIN'! (Scantily clad femmefur flinching from RANDY COUSIN)
(Estvan) Note that the scrolls were banned in the Empire, in spite of their educational content.
(Estvan) Also observe that the Docent made an effective "host."
>Adler: Suggest a few blood-curdling anecdotes for Estvan to relate.
>Adler: Ask to loan these educational scrolls so you can later peruse them in private, more closely and in detail.