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New Avalon Archive: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=New%20Avalon
Colors' Sheet: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1gq9ZEFrwnYjQpSeuMg1a_7UepedMrQUSEwbrHWntFCo/edit?usp=sharing
Previous Thread: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/1692740/

You are Colors Eriksdotter, the Warlock Knight, and you have gathered your compatriots to plan your infiltration of what's likely a safehouse of the Bloody Wing. At least everyone looks awake and alert, even if you're all nursing various degrees of coffee and breakfast. Vickie huddles away from the thin sunlight that manages to stream through both the morning mist and the Willow's windows, curled up off her seat like a sickle blade. Bits of her breakfast sandwich vanish when you aren't looking, presumably into her mouth.
>>
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>>1718417
"I've decided to follow Erin's advice," you tell them. "Carrol House fits too much data, and while the kids hiding in the school is worrisome, they're not...in trouble...out there. Not at the moment, anyway. We go in, find the gate, infiltrate it, and then move from there."

"Should we get eyes on the school?" Vickie asks.

"I can get three Lost on it any time," the Rook offers. You nod to him, and he takes out his phone to start texting. "I assume we are not there to shut them down."

"Not today," you say, with a shrug. "...I'm not awake enough to get into the ethics of running a Changeling brothel."

"I don't like that most of their guys and gals are fresh arrivals," Vickie opines. You blink and a bit of her sandwich is just fucking gone; the Darkling gives you a playful wink before going back to her grim musings like nothing happened. "Whoever's in charge of that shit needs a serious boot planted in their fuckin' rectum."

"Amen," Forum agrees. "We going to break in the back again? They threw the Rook and I the fuck out last time."

"Same trick twice?" the Rook rasps, openly doubtful.

> Walk in the front door. You don't need to complicate this any further than it already is.
> Break in another entrance. Same trick twice, sure, but who knows where the eyes of the Wing are.
> What about the roof?
> Split the team. You and Vickie will pose as customers, then let the Rook and Forum in from inside.
> Write-in?
>>
And now I pass the fuck out. I'll update before work tomorrow. Peace y'all.
>>
>>1718448
> Write-in?

Get that Stripper chick to go in with us, then we let Rook and Vicky in while Forum waits outside with backup in case we need dynamic entry rescue.

Get some radios and some sort of magical communication.
>>
>>1718448
Ooh ccan we also get those protestors to maybe come raise a ruckus after we get in? As a distraction? Forum could leak some stuff online yeah?
>>
>>1718448
> Split the team. You and Vickie will pose as customers, then let the Rook and Forum in from inside.
> What about the roof?
What about it indeed, can they go through while we go from the front?
>>
>>1718542
I dunno why. I just have a hard time seeing Forum the big troll as being sneaky.
>>
>>1718448
>Split the team. You and Vickie will pose as customers, then let the Rook and Forum in from inside.
>What about the roof? (Rook and Forum)

Fucking Darklings, how do they eat!?

>>1718544
They snuck in pretty well last time, though that way has probably been reinforced.
>>
I'm alive. Mostly. Gonna call and write here at 10:40 AM EST.
>>
And called, writing.
>>
>>1718448
>> Walk in the front door. You don't need to complicate this any further than it already is.

Ham Knight!
But more seriously, it's a show of authority and presence; which we'll want to keep when we tell them to knock off wth they're doing, because if they won't listen to us then the larger Courts get involved.
>>
>>1718821
dam, missed cutoff
>>
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>>1718448
The Rook has a good point, but you have another idea. "Can you and Forum reach the roof?" you ask. The Wizened blinks, then frowns. He touches his pinned-up sleeve with a distant expression.

"Yes," he says, after a moment. "But roof access may be locked as well. It's a hotel, so perhaps not. It may even be a display of some kind, considering -" he stops, rumbling wetly in his throat, "considering Carrol House's theme."

"All of that is probably fine, this early in the morning," Vickie comments. "Literally no one is awake and doing shit right now. Not even tourists, they'll be after breakfast and all that."

"Good," you say with a nod. "Vickie and I will check in, posing as customers, and let you two in from the roof." Vickie groans, and you look over at - where the fuck did half her sandwich go it's been four seconds - her. "Is there a problem?"

"No," the Darkling complains. "It's all good."

"...Vickie, words are supposed to mean things," you say slowly.

"We're all good, Fearless Leader, I've got it handled," Vickie emphasizes. You search her face for a moment, turn your head to the Rook, and then snap right back. You catch the Darkling girl with a good-sized chunk of sandwich speared on the end of a thin stiletto knife, moving to her mouth at high speeds. She freezes before she can swallow it practically whole, staring at you with her mouth open.

"What the fuck," Forum says flatly, before he gets up from the table. "We ready to move out?"

"Give me twenty minutes to finish arrangements for the school," the Rook rasps. "Rendezvous at quarter to eleven?"

"Works for me," you agree. Vickie scarfs the rest of her plate, wipes her fingertips with her napkin, and gets up as well. The four of you set bills and coins on the table (Vickie closely inspects her coinage, saving aside the state quarters and squirreling them back into her pocket to be replaced by other change) for your meals and coffee, and then you leave the Willow.

Vickie winces when the two of you cross into what passes for daylight in this mist. The fog is thinning as the day heats up quickly, and your compatriot huddles into her jacket, as though she can crouch away from the brightness.

"So...we seem not fine," you say after a few blocks.

"Oh my God. Colors. Please. Drop it, I'm trying to be nice here."

"So am I!" you protest, bewildered.

Vickie stops and drags you into an alley by the coat sleeve. She's stronger than she looks, though not as strong as you, at a bet. Still, if she wants some privacy...

"You really wanna do this?" Vickie demands. "Last warning."

"Have I done something wrong?"

"No! Which is why I'm just going with it but holy shit Colors not all of us are thirsty enough to fuck Pixie Chasers and I don't really feel like getting a rep as the sort of gal who goes to a fucking whorehouse." Vickie shrugs out of her jacket and tosses it on the sealed lid of a trash can. "Stand between me and the street, wouldja?"
>>
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>>1718847
You block the sightline between the street and Vickie, though it's kinda hard; even with the perpetual stoop so common to Darklings, she's a hair over six feet tall. The reason for her request becomes evident after a moment when she pulls her shirt off, leaving just an off-white bra and your slack-jawed expression of confusion.

No, your Mantle that acts up around your Court's emotion is scattering petals everywhere.

"But," you rally, while Vickie turns her shirt inside-out to reveal that it reverses into a Slayer tee, "Forum and the Rook went in there! I mean, they got thrown out, but -"

"But they're guys, Fearless Leader, it's different," Vickie says with an annoyed shrug. She catches your heroic effort to remember the elevation of her eyes and sticks her tongue out at you before getting back into her shirt. "Don't go too far, pants are going too. Lemme..." She holds her phone up and snaps a selfie, then examines the picture with a critical eye. "Shit, it's not even a Summer thing, Colors, I don't think Arthur gives a rat's ass, I just have standards."

"...I'm pretty sure that first part is sexist and the second part is rude," you mutter, having entirely lost control of this conversation.

"Yeah, nah. I'm not gonna argue the ethics of prostitution on anything less than an entire bottle of tequila. Hey, club bunny or wannabe street punk?"

"Do club bunnies listen to metal?" you ask.

"Good point, on it." Vickie takes the things out of her pants pockets, sets them down, and flashes a knife out of depths of her jacket with a casual motion. She scrapes and slices with quick, clipped motions that steadily transform her black jeans into faded, battered things with worn-through knees. "...Sorry about the standards thing. I know Spring gets, y'know...there's that whole lust-crazed-rabble stereotype and I didn't mean it like that. But goddamn, like, Pixie Chasers? That's some hardcore thirst problems, Colors."

You sigh, because she's right, but you don't say it out loud, because you still have your pride. Vickie steps back into her jeans, pulls her belt tight, and slices down the outer seams of her jacket. You watch in fascination as she opens it up like a book, revealing denim on the inside, reverses the garment, and starts sewing back up into a fucking black jean jacket.

"What the hell," you say, at last.

"...It's a Darkling thing," Vickie answers, uncomfortably. "Just roll with it, okay? This can be another one of those tequila things. I'll owe you a night out drinking sometime."

"I might take you up on that," you warn.

"Colors, I know you're an Elemental, I do, I know it in my heart, but after accusing you of being so thirsty you could out-drink Thor I got fucking undressed in front of you. Means either I trust your honor or I'm a fuckin' moron. Take a guess."

"Honor?"

"Jesus Christ that did not need a question mark."
>>
>>1718862
I like this image and Vickie a lot more than I probably should.
>>
>>1718862
Vickie bites off her thread, ties it, and squirrels her things back into her pockets. She runs her fingers through the shadows that drip and writhe through her hair and pulls, dragging a layer of darkness down over her face that spreads across her skin and settles into bands of black-and-grey that give her the look of a dead woman. She looks at you with a new face, one sharper, more angular than her usual one, with flat grey eyes and a mane of grey hair.

"You look completely different," you tell her. Vickie snaps a second selfie, examines it, then nods.

"Let's do this then. Call me Alyssa for this little exercise."

Your first preview of Carrol House is a billboard packed with entirely too much bright color and exclamation marks, inviting people to enter the world of Alice in Wonderland at Carrol House. The actual building is somehow worse. It's like someone took their vague memory of the animated film and decided to splash it on the walls of a perfectly serviceable building. It might meet New Avalon's strict architectural standards, but Carrol House is a sin against the fine art of painting, as well as the human eye and possibly the various gods of love and beauty. It doesn't have a parking lot, but there's a convenient garage nearby, so that's probably that. You catch a flash of light from a neighboring building and look up; the Rook and Forum nod at you from the roof. Good, they're in position.

The desk clerk is human, amazingly enough, a tall young man bored enough with his morning that you catch a whiff of excited Glamour off of him just at the door opening. "Welcome to Carrol House. May I serve you?"

> Check in and go immediately up to the roof
> Get your room key and head to the bar. The Rook and Forum can't go there and you might learn something
> Pump the clerk for information (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at +3)
> Write-in?
>>
>>1718894
>> Pump the clerk for information (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at +3)
>>
I almost didn't finish that update. Now I go to work; votes, obviously, remain open.

Remember: failures have consequences.

Questions, comments, discussion, feedback, and criticisms remain welcome and appreciated.

Thank you all for reading and participating!
>>
>>1718894
>Write-in?
>Have Alyssa meet up with The Rook and Forum, while Colors 'gets some drinks' at the bar and maybe a little information.
>>
>>1718867
Oh? Do tell.
>>
>>1718919
supporting
>>
>>1718930
Kinda shallow reasoning... I think the style on the image is amazing and Vickie trusted us enough to get semi naked in front of us. I don't think most Darklings would go for that, which I'm mostly basing off of how Jesse acted and how considerate Moira was of the fact.
>>
Gonna be home nearabouts midnight EST. Votes remain open, as does Q&A
>>
>>1718894
> Pump the clerk for information (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at +3)
Always interrogate the front desk
>>
>>1718894
> Check in and go immediately up to the roof
>>
>>1718919
>This
>>
>>1718862
> "Colors, I know you're an Elemental, I do, I know it in my heart, but after accusing you of being so thirsty you could out-drink Thor I got fucking undressed in front of you. Means either I trust your honor or I'm a fuckin' moron. Take a guess."
> "Honor?"
> "Jesus Christ that did not need a question mark."

Vickie is the best.
>>
Finally home. Went to see a movie, had a great time. Now I'm calling and writing, and as far as I can tell we have >>1718919 as our winner.

Thank you for your patience.
>>
>>1718894
You look around the front room and are gripped by an old, familiar rage you identify as 'the urge to burn this building to the ground with its architects inside it'. The decorations hit the eye in jagged edges of color, and some asshole mixed real plants in with the fake 'Wonderland' ones, making both look out of place at the same time. Gaudy glass colors the dead florescent lights, making the room hurt your eyes even more where it goes pouring into the natural shadows.

The clerk is staring at you. The fuck does he want - oh right, you're a customer.

"We'd like a room," you tell him. "I'm told you accept walk-ins?"

"Only by the hour," the clerk says carefully, his voice lowering in case someone hears him.

"That's -"

"Three hours," Vickie - sorry, Alyssa - cuts in. "And leave the mint in the bathroom because damn does pearl diving do a number on your breath."

It is a heroic effort of self-control not to join the clerk in sputtering in shock.

In the end you split the bill (note to self: refresh petty cash). "Alyssa, can you, ah. Freshen up, while I check out the bar?" you propose.

"You'll need an ID," the clerk warns. You assure him that you have one and head towards the bar while Alyssa goes upstairs. You get a text saying she'll check the upper floors with the Rook and Forum while you do what you're doing.

You brush petals and raindrops from your shoulder, and brief flashes of rather specific imagery out of your mind. This place is getting to you, and it's not like you were all that far from the frame of mind where visiting a brothel starts to sound like a good idea.

Slipping into the bar reveals where the budget for interior design went. Where reception is gaudy and glaring, the bar and lounge has a smooth, almost psychadelic air made from blending stripes of color. Bright hookahs sit at each of the tables, which are held up by sculpted caterpillars. The dessert menu above the bar is playfully labeled 'Eat Me', while the cocktail menu, with every drink named for Carrol characters, says 'Drink Me'.

There are a lot of working girls here, and they're all Changelings. Most of them are new arrivals, people who have come crawling, running, or screaming out of the Hedge in the chaotic months since the Mask dropped. More than a few are Fairest, who nervously chat up the diners and seem uncomfortable with being put on display, but there are Beasts, Darklings, Elementals, and even an Ogre and a Wizened, the former a bronze, genie-like beauty and the latter dressed clashingly in a mechanic's outfit that you're decently certain is completely useless for actual mechanical work.

And the Sage Escort is here, looking pissed. Freya fucking preserve.
>>
>>1722969
Her name is Cherry, though sometimes she says 'Sakura' to people who expect a Japanese name from a fox-like Beast, and she holds no small esteem in Spring. Cherry's mission in life is, in her own words, to break down the barriers of sexuality and encourage people to be comfortable in themselves. Her title, Sage Escort, technically harkens back to the ancient days of Spring when the study of sexual desire was a formal position. Today, you are given to understand, it is sought or claimed by those looking to break down the often-conservative views of the Lost on love and lust.

On ordinary days you've been happy to stick with your odd blend of curiosity, lust, and nervousness when it comes to Cherry, but today the seductive kitsune is on the warpath. She chats with one of the Fairest girls in low tones, passion coming through in her body language, and you sidle close enough to make out her words.

"- is a sacrilege," Cherry says, sotto voce. "The support this place offers is available freely to all citizens of the Freehold. You're clearly uncomfortable, and no wonder, with them parading you about like -"

"Please," the girl pleads, terror in her tone. "Please, just...just stop. I. I'm working. I'm working, not, not parading..."

"I'm so sorry," Cherry murmurs, her voice dipping sympathetically. "That was insensitive. If you could just tell me who you're sworn to...?"

"I can't," the Fairest girl says, and then she leaves. Her skin swims like paint and then resettles as she reaches the other side of the room, resolving into pontillistic points.

"You," Cherry says. She's spotted you, and her eyes narrow in rage. She crosses the room and gets in your face, her voice a narrow hiss full of fury. "Was oathbreaking not enough? You have to patronize this, this mockery? These girls have been tricked and abused, Warlock Knight. What do you have to say for yourself?"

> Stick to your cover (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
> Put her on the phone with Ramona (???)
> Tell her the straight truth (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
> Write-in?
>>
>>1722983
>Tell her the straight truth (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
>Spend 1 glamour just to be on the safer side we'll have 4 left I believe?
>Write-in?
>If we succeed, make sure no one is eavesdropping and make sure she keeps up the attitude, there is probably someone around keeping an eye out because she's causing a commotion. Shouldn't be too hard for her since she doesn't seem to like us a whole lot as is.
>>
>>1722983
> Write-in?

Tell her we're currently working here. Technically true.

Then lead into

> Tell her the straight truth (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
>>
>>1722983
>> Stick to your cover (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3

Best to not blow it. After all we don't really know who Cherry might be working for
>>
I am definitely not going to be able to update before work. As usual I'm open for Q&A by phone. I can't promise an answer to all questions, but you can't win if you don't play, folks.
>>
>>1722983
>> Stick to your cover (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
>>
>>1722983
> Tell her the straight truth (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
>>
>>1722983
> Write-in
> "I have a very good reason for being here, Sage Escort, and it does not involve sex. If you wish to discuss the issue later, at the Willow perhaps, I will gladly do so. But please, for now, allow me to do my job."
> Roll to Persuade.
>>
> Tell her the straight truth (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
>>
I'm getting that short story itch in me. Do you want to see:

> Zippo Morris (The Fireworks Show)
> Moira of Winter (Bury Your Darlings)
> Agent James Nichols (Semper Fi)
>>
>>1722983
> Tell her the straight truth (Persuasion against difficulty 9; you roll at a total of +3)
>>
>>1724861
> Zippo Morris (The Fireworks Show)
>>
>>1724861
> Agent James Nichols (Semper Fi)
>>
>>1724861
> Agent James Nichols (Semper Fi)
>>
>>1724861
>> Zippo Morris (The Fireworks Show)
>>
>>1724861
> Moira of Winter (Bury Your Darlings)
>>
> Zippo Morris (The Fireworks Show)
>>
>>1724861
> Moira of Winter (Bury Your Darlings)
>>
>>1724861
> Moira of Winter (Bury Your Darlings)
>>
>>1725972
Whoops, forgot I had already voted. Strike this one.
>>
>>1725232
>>1725972
>>1725976
Incidentally folks, meet my roommate. She's on my wi-fi, which...may create difficulties, now that I think about it.
>>
>>1724861
> Agent James Nichols (Semper Fi)
>>
>>1725993
Nah it's fine since you have a trip.

Oooh but we could grill her for minutia about your life.
>>
Update vote called for straight truth. Roll me 1d10+3.

You gain your Virtue bonus; you have chosen to potentially risk your mission to uphold the Asatru ideals of honor and truth.
>>
Rolled 5 + 3 (1d10 + 3)

>>1726595
>>
Rolled 9 + 3 (1d10 + 3)

>>1726595
>>
>>1726607
5+3=8; Success at Consequence. Writing.

Votes are still open on the short story option until 1:30 AM EST.
>>
>>1726611
I just want to swear on our name that we are at work.

Just so she stutters mentally for a moment at talking shit to us, then thinking that we're one of the taken advantage of girls.

Look all sad and hurt while saying it.

Then clarifying that we're here in part to shut the place down.

I don't see why she would be upset with that.
>>
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>>1722983
"I am not here to patronize this place," you hiss in equally low tones. "I am here on the will and order of the reigning monarch and the royalty of the four Courts."

The words 'a likely story' almost visibly leap to Cherry's tongue; you can taste the wrath sparking and leaping off of the Beast, whose ears flatten against her head, whose hair bristles like the fur it isn't, but prior experience clashes the Sage Escort's gears and keeps her quiet long enough for you to continue.

Elementals are, for good reason, not known as consummate liars. And you are not the only person in this conversation rumored to have access to royalty.

"One person from each Court has been assigned to investigate a rash of missing teens, Cherry. I am not here to take advantage of these girls. They are wholly irrelevant to my mission, unless any of them are the missing mortals. I came down here to try and ply people for information, but you've gone and ruined that."

"Don't you go accusing me of interfering in Crown business as if you'd gone an announced yourself," Cherry snaps, her voice still soft enough not to carry, yet full of rage. You've seen Fancy do the same thing - she says it's a musician's trick. "I don't know where you get the gall."

"I didn't mean -"

"Save it," Cherry interrupts. "Are you going to interfere with my work here?"

"Not purposefully," you tell her. "Possibly by indirect action or unintentional action. Those we're hunting are lairing here."

"Fair," the fox-woman concedes. "...How may I assist the Crown?"

"I don't suppose you know if this place has a basement?"

"I do, and it does not," Cherry confirms. "The water table is high around here. They couldn't dig without drowning the entire first floor, which I rather imagine would both spoil the effect and make the Walrus And Carpenter display on the second a little redundant.

"Is this a hotel or a tourist trap?" you ask, blinking.

"It is an ongoing error of design and business choices sustained in its unholy life by the vicissitudes of fate and a hunger for magic," Cherry says flatly. "Now, if there is nothing else, I need to get back to work and I do not need you here for that."

You open your mouth to protest that you hadn't meant it like that, and then you close it instead. Now is not the time. There might not be a time for awhile.

You have gained a RIVAL.

"Are there men that work with the girls?" you ask, in a sigh. "I probably don't need to know it professionally, but...I would like to know."

"Some," Cherry admits. "The demand is smaller, their tasks...different. The girls are plucked up, used, and placed back in their seats, to drink or to cry in private, but the women that come looking for a touch of magic want to be swept off of their feet. Of necessity, it means greater freedom for the working boys, but they are still slaves to tainted pledges."
>>
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>>1726725
You nod and head back out of the bar, drinks un-bought. No basement, huh? It would have been an easy and obvious place to put a Gate. Too public a spot means getting caught coming and going. Too private of one means getting caught sneaking in and out.

One of the rooms, perhaps?

You find Alyssa, the Rook, and Forum lounging near the roof access. The troll looks up when you arrive and immediately starts talking.

"Are they seriously serving alcohol this early?"

"Yeah," you confirm. "Is that - shit, that's illegal, isn't it? I'd forgotten."

"How Spring of you," Alyssa drawls, with a familiar crooked smile. "That's not the only weird shit. They have girls down there this early?"

"Mmhm," you agree. "...I'm not experienced with brothels."

Vickie looks at the Rook while Forum desperately tries to signal to her to look anywhere but at the Rook.

"I have loved one woman in my life who did not birth me, and I will tolerate your insult to her memory this one time," the Rook rasps. Alyssa nods, solemnly, and looks towards you instead. You hold your hands up.

"Pixie Chasers live in bars," you say by way of explanation, and everyone sighs.

"This place should be burnt to the ground," the Rook growls. "And replaced with something so banal and horrific that no one will ever have congress here again." The Wizened coughs into his sleeve.

"There's no basement here, so the Gate can't be there. I don't suppose you can be more specific, Rook?" you prompt, hopefully.

"Not...exactly," he says carefully. "I could make an extraordinary guess, perhaps, but trading luck for fate is rarely a safe proposition. I would prefer to avoid it. But I may be able to...no..."

"Could just strongarm the owner," Alyssa suggests. "Anyone with ideas this shitty is living here. I've seen Hotel Hell."

"Didn't that show crash and burn after less than a season?" Forum asks. "And why is a Deputy of the Summer Court taking her cues from TV?"

"Art imitates life, okay," Alyssa says haughtily. She takes a sniff, then another, deeper one. "Hrm. Colors, did the girls downstairs seem...happy...to you?"

"Not even a little," you murmur.

"I can smell it." Vickie sniffs again and starts to walk, wandering vaguely down the hall towards the stairs. The carpet here has been made to look like brightly-colored grass.

Wait, that's not carpet. It's fucking astroturf. The fuck?

Vickie beckons, and you step in closer. "Yes, V-Alyssa?"

"I'm six floors up and I can smell the reek of horror and sorrow from up here," the Darkling girl tells you. "I can taste twisted words. We've got a spare couple of minutes. I want to track down the other end of those pledges and open throats until they're done. The girls get out, true to their words, and we can sweep 'em into the Freehold proper where they can get some actual help."

"What - we're on a mission," you tell her.
>>
>>1726792
"Defending the weak is our mission," she says with fierce conviction. "...And you can task the Rook and Forum with finding the Gate. The bastard has to be close. We kill him, drop the body in the Hedge, I'll take the heat from Arthur. I just. I need you with me on this, okay? You want them to end up oathbreakers like you or what? It's gotta be a Lost, one of us, preying on our youngbloods."

There's the crack-boom of thunder off of Vickie's Mantle, and the sound of lashing rain in a banshee gale.

"You in?" the Darkling asks, her eyes on yours with a hopeful look.

> I'm in
> No, Vickie. We can't do this now, or maybe ever
>>
>>1726798
> I'm in
Slay the villain to save the girl(s). Sounds good to me.
>>
>>1726798
>I'm in
>But keep in mind there's also Cherry below
>Also let's try to keep this on the down low, unless the mortals get the bad whiff of this debacle
>>
>>1726857
supporting
>>
And now I crawl into bed and die. Don't have a day off until Thursday.
>>
>>1726857
>This sounds good
>>
>>1726798
> I'm in
> also: >>1726857

This is a wrong that absolutely MUST be set right, these girls went from one hell into another and need a knight.
>>
> I'm in
> Just make sure you get the right person

Hey, Colors just had a dream where she told herself that she needed to be able to scream "Halt, villain!" at evildoers. Colors sorta needs something like this, but she needs to be careful about turning this into a bloodbath.
>>
>>1726798
> I'm in

HALT, FOUL VILLAIN, AND FACE ME.
>>
>>1726857
>>1726798
Also yeah let's get Cherry in on this.
>>
I don't think we have to involve Cherry unless it gets really dangerous, if we manage to kill the exploiter and the pledges fade she'll know.
>>
Called, writing.
>>
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>>1726798
You are quiet, for a moment, but the hammer on your necklace seems almost heavier now. You touch it with your thumb, running over the runes carved into the steel of it.

"I'm in," you murmur. "Let me explain things to the Rook and Forum. I doubt there will be objections, but they may have some advice."

"This isn't my first rodeo," the Darkling says, scowling. "...But okay, alright."

The men are waiting politely. You head over to them while Vickie pats herself down and double-checks her weapons. "Vickie and I are going to attend to some other business while we're here," you tell them. "It might get loud, and it will definitely get ugly. We're freeing the Changelings trapped here."

"You sure that's in our scope?" Forum asks.

"Doesn't matter, she's doing it," the Rook says in a low voice. His one-eyed gaze is understanding. "Second floor, room at the end of the hall is the manager's office. Who knows if they're in, but Vickie knows her way around a computer. May your gods keep you."

You blink. "Thank you. I didn't know you were a man of faith."

You get a one-armed shrug. "I'm not. We'll text you when we find the gate."

Vickie nods when you tell her that the two of you should try the second floor first. Hotel staff are doing their usual early-morning things - vacuuming the halls (why the fuck is this astroturf?), slipping into rooms for housekeeping, and otherwise attending to the dubious hospitality of the place. You pass a room where gentle sobbing floats through the door; a female voice sharply says that if she wanted tears, she'd pay for them.

Vickie rakes a blade down the door as you pass, fast enough that her arm is just a blur. Two voices scream in absolute terror, and you catch a hot shard of fear for yourself to keep.

You gain 1 GLAMOUR..

"Bitch," the Darkling mutters. She tugs at her hair with an irritated motion, pulling at the goblin seeming she's wearing. The skin peels away, revealing her own face under it, and as she rips down her skin splits and drops onto the fake grass.

She hasn't put her knife away.

"Vickie," you say significantly. She looks at you, then looks down at her hand. The knife vanishes into her jacket, and the two of you head down the stairs.

"You seem, um. Unusually angry about this?" you suggest. "Like. Not unusually, this is fucked up, but as if it's personal."

"It is," Vickie growls. She vaults the side of the stairs and lands the next floor down. Steel-toed boots hit concrete with a sound like an alarm bell. "...You noticed the name thing. Go on, ask."

You take a deep breath. "You related to Rachael Reeds at all?"
>>
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>>1727613
"Oh boy, someone asked. Yes! That's Mom, and I spent my first four years back suckered into a pledge that made me her fucking slave. Mommy knew best, you know? One of these days I'm gonna auction off her kidney for that shit, God as my fuckin' witness. One of these days. And in the meantime, I'm not tolerating this tainted pledge bullshit. Not now, not ever."

"Why did she do that?" you ask. Vickie hesitates on the steps, which gives you enough time to catch up. "...Vickie, I just want to understand."

"She's crazy," Vickie murmurs. "Honest-to-god batshit fucking loco. My whole family got taken, you know that? Me. Mom. Dad. They took the dog, even my fish. They took my brother, my sister, the foster kid staying with us. And just me and Rachael ever came back."

She lets out a long breath. "And it was my fault. We got taken, we got split up, we got auctioned off, and it was my fault. So maybe Mom going nuts and deciding it's easier to be a demigod than a person is on me too, but that doesn't change what happened, and I'm gonna hurt her for it like she hurt me, because I'm never gonna get justice for it, or closure, or satisfaction. If a pound of flesh is what I can get, it's what I'll take."

You reach your hand out, hesitantly, and touch her shoulder.

"Don't," Vickie warns. "Just don't. If I wanted to hear it's not my fault, that life goes on, that I can let it go, I'd be Spring, and not Summer. Okay? There's nothing for you to say here, not if you wanna be friends."

"I understand," you agree. "Do you need a minute?"

"No. I'm good."

The second floor is rather more full of mysteriously regular thumping noises and various flavors of showering and/or moaning (why are the walls this thin?), though now that you think about it you can sorta see why you'd want to sell those rooms first.

Unfortunately, the room marked for management is also in the group of those that is emanating mysterious thumping and moaning.

"You have got to be kidding me," Vickie sighs. "And it's a key lock. An actual key lock. Fucking Red Roof Inn has card locks, come the fuck on. One second." The Darkling gets out a set of lockpicks from her front pocket and kneels down to get to work.

When she slides the metal picks in she gets hit with a jolt of electricity that seizes up her muscles, keeping her death gripped on the lock while her hair stands straight out and she spasms in agony. You get a grip on her shoulder and haul her bodily away from the lock, breaking the circuit. Vickie's skin smokes.

"I," she croaks, "am going to kill so many people today."

> Kick the door in. Screw subtlety
> You have roof access. This room has a window. One and one is...
> Use Control Glass to make Vickie nonconductive picks (3 Glamour)
> Write-in?
>>
>>1727641
>> You have roof access. This room has a window. One and one is...
>We kick the door in while Vic uses the window.

>>1726792
>Wait, that's not carpet. It's fucking astroturf. The fuck?
>>1727613
>why the fuck is this astroturf?
So that you wouldn't notice it chancing to hedge-grass...>>1727641
>why are the walls this thin?
So that the customers would not hear the strugling of those taken through here...
>>
>>1727641
>> You have roof access. This room has a window. One and one is...
It might not be the best option for our part, but being subtle - at least for a while longer - should make the part of Forum and the Rook easier. And since that is, after all, the primary, we shouldn't do anything to compromise it.

Alternatively we could knock and bust in when they open, but that's got to many unkowns for my taste.
>>
>>1727641
>You have roof access. This room has a window. One and one is...

>>1727653
Your logic is sound and it just makes me sooo much more fucking angry.
>>
>>1727641
Wait, you'd think someone would notice the attempted electrocution... ah well.

>You have roof access. This room has a window. One and one is...
>>
>>1727674
>Wait, you'd think someone would notice the attempted electrocution... ah well.
Eh, people getting electrocuted isn't that loud, especially considering the "background noise".

And an alarm (or the detection, at least) should be somewhat difficult to realise, since the human body doesn't offer that much resistance. And the current goind through Vickie can't have been that high, because that shit gets deadly fast.
>>
>"You get a grip on her shoulder and haul her bodily away from the lock"
I was always told never to grab a person getting electrocuted, but to literally kick them off the thing that is doing it, was this an oversight, have I been lied to, or is colors naturally nonconducting due to being mostly glass?
>>
>>1727709
I'm gonna place most of my own chips on 'oversight' because the beginning and end of my thought process was 'the shortest ground is still through the victim, right? Oughta be fine'.

My bad, man.
>>
>>1727744
It's alright, Changelings, how do they work?!
>>
>>1727709
Would clothing work as an insulator?
>>
>>1727754
Very likely not, don't quote me on that though.
>>
>>1727754
>>1727757
It's kinda inbetween. Copper, as a conductor, is in magnitudes of 10^-2 Ohm*cm, glass and other insulators are around 10^15 to 10^22. Most types of leather and fabric I found seem to be around 10^6, and as such are more less in the same area as flesh and similar.

Presumably you wouldn't have complete direct contact between your cloting and your skin, and a smaller contact are leads to a larger resistance, so it might/should be better than bare skin.
>>
>> You have roof access. This room has a window. One and one is...
>>
>>1727641
> Use Control Glass to make Vickie nonconductive picks (3 Glamour)
The roof is the sixth floor apparently. The room we need to get into is on the second. I don't know how easy it's going to be to get in through a window down four floors.

The window might have its own problems, while I doubt the door has a second.

Also, no matter how we get in, there's the issue that both whoever is running this operation and the people "working" here are going to be changelings, and it might not be obvious who is the bad guy when we bust in. Maybe we can trust Vickie's sense of smell?
>>
>>1727641
> Kick the door in. Screw subtlety

They'll never expect it.
>>
>>1727641
>> Use Control Glass to make Vickie nonconductive picks (3 Glamour)
>>
so question, was the electric anti-lockpicking device magic or did someone rig a car battery to the door?
>>
>>1727641
> Kick the door in. Screw subtlety
If we go in through the roof, they might run out the door. If we leave Vickie outside to watch the door, we'll be trapped alone with them.
>>
>>1727641
>Kick the door in. Screw subtlety
>>
>>1727641
> Kick the door in. Screw subtlety

We have the powah! Besides I'd rather use our glamour for fucking people up.
>>
We have a somewhat rough tie between Roof Access and Kick The Door because of this vote >>1727653

So I'ma break it on the side of Roof Access. Thank y'all for your patience.
>>
>>1729782
Boooooooooooooooopthbthbthbt

Honestly, now that I think about it, with the thin walls and such why are we even bothering with the door instead of going full kool-aid man.
>>
>>1729786
I wish I could art, I have this lovely mental image of Colors just busting through the wall yelling "FORSOOTH!".
>>
>>1729902
>>1729786
One is a crazy person made of glass and full of red liquid who busts through walls at inappropriate times while shouting.
The other is the kool-aid man.
>>
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>>1727641
You help Vickie up. She leans against the wall, bent like a kama at the waist, and sucks in heaving breaths while she takes stock of her situation.

"Dumbass," she says at last. "If you're gonna break the law with stupid door traps you oughta go all the way and kill the guy. They still fucking in there?"

You put your ear to the door. There's definitely still Mysterious Sounds from within.

"At least no one's crying?" you offer. "Are you going to be okay?"

"I've had worse, I can walk it off. We still need in there, though."

"Fire escape?"

"Fire escape."

The two of you go all the way back up the stairs. Vickie forces her hair back down; the Darkling does a good 'I have work to do now' face but you can tell that jolt did a number on her.

Whatever else they do (and they do a lot of awful shit), New Avalon's architectural codes mean the city's fire escapes are present and in good repair or the terrible wrath of the municipal government will fall upon the head of the offender like the hammer of Thor. The two of you make your way back down, taking care not to clatter or creak too hard. You go first in case, not to put too fine a point on it, Vickie falls, but you have confidence. Changelings are often tough people, and Darklings can be some of the toughest.

You stop up short at the bottom, because you honestly cannot believe what you're seeing. Vickie bumps into you, manages not to yell or cry out, and looks to see what's got you staring like a country rube.

"Is...is she doing spreadsheets while she rides his dick?" Vickie says at last, in naked disbelief.

"I noticed him making a sandwich first," you admit.

"He's - holy God he is."

There are two Lost in the small manager's office - an Ogre in a sharp-cut suit that you recognize as Knuckles Morrow, a new recruit in Summer. The young woman currently treating his cock as a distant fourth in her list of personal priorities (not that it seems to be high on his since Knuckles is spreading peanut butter on some bread) is one of the new arrivals, a Fairest woman whose hair is the night sky. She goes by Virgo, funnily enough, and has been flirting with Spring since her arrival.

"Is this what married sex is like?" Vickie asks.

"How the fuck am I supposed to know?" You check the window, which opens smoothly. You and Vickie slip in, just ahead of the breeze that will tell the two lovers (?) that they are in danger. Bifrost clears its sheath to point at Knuckles while Vickie arrests Virgo with a knife beneath her chin and a second one that rests, tip-first, against the space between her ribs.

"One of you is responsible for this house of horrors," Vickie says in a low voice. "Which one?"

"Her," Knuckles says immediately.

"Him!" Virgo accuses, her eyes wide. Little clocks tick the time away where her pupils ought to be.
>>
>>1729970
> Kill them both
> Kill Knuckles
> Kill Virgo
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
> Let Vickie pass judgement.
> Write-in?
>>
>>1729972
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
>>
>>1729972
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)

Is Knuckles a new arrival too, as in a recent escapee, or just a new recruit to the local summer court in New Avalon? How long he's been back in the mortal world might be a good indicator of how likely he is to be the one in charge of this shitshow. He might be a boss screwing one of his "employees" (certainly wouldn't be the first), or they might be in this together.
>>
>>1729972
> Let Vickie pass judgement.
>>
>>1729970
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
If we're gonna go full cowboy cop/vigilante, the least we can do is not kill the innocent (though I doubt any one of them is actually innocent)
>>
>Use Cupid's Eye
>>
>>1729902
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
>>
>>1729970
We can pass oaths of service at sword point, yes?

Or pin someone down with our sword. That wouldn't be fatal right away yeah?
>>
>>1729972
Are changelings tough enough they'll survive if we disarm them in the most literal sense of the term? I don't think we should leave either of these two functionally mobile, even if we don't kill them immediately.
>>
>>1729972
>Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)

The most important thing here is to find out who has all the pledges, and fucking murder them in the face.
>>
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
>>
>>1729972
>> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
>>
>>1729972
> Write-in?

Start by separating them then getting them to turn evidence on each other for leniency.
>>
>>1730288
Depends on the Changeling. They do die when you kill them, but many, perhaps most, have adapted to inhuman horror and suffering. They're a bit hard to put out of the fight.

That said, getting de-limbed is a bitch.
>>
>>1729997
He's new-ish. He arrived a little before Colors did, and flirted with several Courts while he was making decisions about his life (as is normal for new arrivals). Colors was in New Avalon and sworn to Spring by the time he finally asked to be initiated into Summer. Knuckles appears to be his actual name or at least a close approximation thereof - his fetch, still extant, runs Knuckles' Used Car Dealership.

>>1730233
If they swear it, you can hold them to it. Swordpoint oaths and unintended oaths are a danger of being or dealing with the Lost.

I will not be able to update before work. Thead's open for Q&A, and votes, obviously, remain open.
>>
>>1730463
Wait. If oaths under duress are valid then I'm down for forcing those out of them.

They're really fucking bad to break, no?
>>
So I realized something about this place.

It's not a brothel - I mean, it is, but it's not, really.

It's a Glamour farm. Question is, for who?
>>
>>1729972
>> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)

Yeah, a proper Knight isn't going to just burst in and murder the people: she's going to find out how to make the killing she has to do do the most good.
>>
>>1730627
Depends on what you swear on, and with what sanctions. "Or may God strike me dead," is a dangerous phrase.

>>1730775
Ahh, now we're cooking with gas!
>>
>>1730817
>"Or may God strike me dead," is a dangerous phrase.
Would fit Colors, slightly edited to take into account her faith tough, if she wants to get really serious with an oath, was something similar part of her pledge to Spring?
>>
>>1730817
Okay, so this whole hotel is pretty much perfectly suited for the militia's operation. They have a hotel designed so that you don't notice anything until its too late, not the grass under your feet or the screams of other victims. It also provides them with easy access to the hedge and presumably a hollow on the other side of that gate. And on top of that, it provides them with a steady stream of glamour to fuel their operations.

At least some of that is probably modifications, which means that these people are fairly well prepared and fortified. I know Erin thought these people were amateurs, but this doesn't feel like an amateur operation at all. This seems like it's fairly well planned and supported.

We should kill these two an hurry up to catch up with Forum and Rook. There's a good chance they're going to need our help. Like, right the fuck now.
>>
>>1730817
>>1730849
It's so perfectly appropriate for Color's knightly theme. I'm gonna vote now that if we grab any guilty parties and decide not to promptly turn them into blood pudding, we force them to take an oath using that phrase (or a faith-specific equivalent.)

...In the case of differing faiths, whose faith is more effective in enforcing such a sanction? That of the one who swears the oath, or the one who demanded the oath be sworn?

>>1730397
>That said, getting de-limbed is a bitch.
So it's not completely insane, and actually has some potential? That could be handy.
>>
>>1729972
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty)
>>
>>1729972
> Use Cupid's Eye to see if you can get more information by ransacking what each desires out of the place (1 Glamour each, unknown difficulty).
>>
>>1731448
Neither, really. Death is a potential Sanction, a penalty for violating a pledge, but no matter how you phrase it, the power of the Wyrd is what rewards the faithful and punishes the warlock.

Oaths invested in faith are some of the few that True Fae cannot make. Faith is the mark of mortalkind. Much like how an oath on one's name is bound up in one's honor, an oath sworn in the name of your faith (be it in Jesus, Thor, Anansi, or even just Love) is bound up in that faith. To break such an oath, to the Wyrd, is to confirm that your faith is as worthless to you as your word, and to mark yourself as being like the Strangers. Those who dishonor their faith suffer a fae madness in addition to the agreed-also Sanctions.

As for slicing limbs off, keep in mind that even if they survive the shock, they're gonna bleed to death. The Rook is alive because Rachael Reeds kept him alive, not because of supernatural fortitude. The Lost are tough, not immortal. They die like men.

Mostly.
>>
Alright, that's a pretty handy win for Cupid's Eye. Roll me 1d10+4, four times. Best of first two go to Knuckles, best of the second two go to Virgo.
>>
>>1731806
Oh, and you spend 2 Glamour. Marking on the sheet now. Remember that up to once per month you can hold Ramona to your Knight's Oath to get 4 Glamour from her.
>>
Rolled 6 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1731806
>>
>>1731806
>>
I just realized, I've never actually rolled dice, and thus have no clue how to
>>
Rolled 7 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1731806
>>
>>1731915
>>1731933
You roll dice by putting dice+XdY+Z in the Options field, such as dice+1d10+4
>>
>>1731933
Type "dice+_d_" in the options bar.
>>
Rolled 1 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1731806
>>
Rolled 7 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1731806
Gonna go again
>>
> 11 on both

Welp. Writing.
>>
>>1732112
hopefully eleven is enough
>>
>>1729970
You sigh. "Knuckles, I think you might know how this sort of thing goes. I'm going to move my blade now, but if you so much as twitch the wrong way, Vickie's going to open Virgo up, then you. I promise you, you are not faster than she is."

The Ogre nods his understanding, his eyes steady and clear. There's a certain beat-down, bruised quality to Knuckles that never quite leaves him; today there's a bruise around his eye in the shape of the Eye of Horus, paired with lacy scars that ring his neck in Aramaic, but they change every day, never the same scars and wounds twice.

You lower Bifrost. Virgo opens her mouth to say something stupid and gets cut off with a sound of agony; Vickie's stabbed her, just a little, letting out a thick trickle of red blood that releases tiny motes of starlight.

"She don't know how this goes," Knuckles adds. "But she's a quick learner, like. You wanna tell me what this's all about?"

"Tainted oaths, and a daughter's revenge," you tell him, with a small shrug. You touch his temple with your fingertips, barely brushing past his hair to put your hot glass against his warm flesh, and call on your bargain with the Fleeting Spring.

Give me his desires of and in and for the Carrol House you ask, as you offer up a shard of the fear Vickie was kind enough to grasp for you earlier.

Lust and fear. A timeless combination Spring purrs. Your Wyrd wrestles with Knuckles', but his Ogrish nature makes him susceptible to this kind of sorcery, a fact you knew well before you picked him as your first target. What you get are not quite thoughts, and not quite feelings, and not exactly wishes, but some stepchild of all of them - the desires of Knuckles Morrow that flow in and through the Carrol House. Unsurprisingly you can feel his lust for several of the girls you saw, but more shocking is that he wishes they were happier so he wouldn't feel so bad about being attracted to them.

And he wishes he could leave more often. And he wishes Virgo wouldn't be so mean to the girls all the time. And he wishes he knew who those sketchy bastards Virgo talks to all the time were, or where they go, or why they never seem to care about the girls, and -

A stream of and sheets past you, painting a picture of a better Caroll House, a fantasy place where everyone in signed up on purpose and Knuckles can run security with a clean conscience.

"You wanna save me some time?" you ask Virgo. The Fairest spits in your face. "Knuckles, you wanna get her off of your lap and get some pants on?"

"I got obligations, Warlock Knight," he warns. The scars 'round his neck ooze black blood that smells faintly of rot. "You and me, we're gonna have a problem here, you know that right?"

"Just do it. You'll definitely fail your oath to protect her if you don't."
>>
>>1732120
We may end up disappointed anyway. These chucklefucks probably aren't the ones running this operation, the setup's too good for a pair of newbies. I'm thinking they're middle management, and that their desires are petty as fuck.
>>
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>>1732213
That feel when I forgot to close my italics. That'll teach me to pay the fuck attention.

"...Yeah, true that." The Ogre sets his half-made sandwich down on the desk (Virgo fumes at it, her hair shifting until you can see Scorpio in it) before delicately picking up the Fairest and setting her down near you. Vickie keeps a knife pressed against Virgo's kidney.

You drop the blinds over the window. This isn't your first rodeo either, and it reminds you, uncomfortably, of Philly.

You touch Virgo's temple and offer up a gleaming shard of lust from one of Fancy's shows earlier in the week, gleaned from a crowd of awed and aroused viewers there to ogle and also to stare.

Her too you ask Fleeting Spring. Same deal.

But of course Spring answers.

Virgo's only desire about the men and women in her service is that she could have more of them. More, more - more money, more Glamour, more influence. Her fantasies build a palatial Carrol House from which she reigns as the Emerald Monarch, with slaves to attend to her every need. You catch a fleeting image of a man, tall and elegant, who shines in all the riotous colors of the rainbow and serves Virgo with passionate fervor, and then it is gone, overwhelmed by Virgo's Wyrd and her will.

"You hold the pledges," you tell her.

"And there's nothing you can hrrrk..."

Vickie has stabbed her. By the time your brain registers that fact and reports it to you, Vickie has stabbed her four more times, shredding the Fairest's kidneys. The Darkling turns Virgo with a rough motion and buries her stiletto in the woman's skull, her Mantle lashing rain and thunder around her that soaks into the floor and crackles over her clothing.

"You soulless fucking cunt," Vickie murmurs, as Virgo hits her knees, then the floor. "I hope you rot in Hell."

Knuckles stares in naked disbelief. You look at him and take pity. "Was your oath only to her?"

"You killed her like you was blowin' out a fuckin' candle," Knuckles whispers. "Why the fuck?"

> Try to calm him [Persuasion against difficulty 11; you may spend for Flickering Acumen]
> Try to intimidate him [Persuasion against difficulty 11; you may spend for Flickering Acumen, and you roll 2 dice]
> Kill him too. Rationalizations or not, he was part of this
> Try to take Knuckles in alive. Arthur needs to know about this.
> Write-in?
>>
>>1732252
> Try to calm him [Persuasion against difficulty 11; you may spend for Flickering Acumen]
> Try to take Knuckles in alive. Arthur needs to know about this.
>>
>>1732252
> Try to intimidate him [Persuasion against difficulty 11; you may spend for Flickering Acumen, and you roll 2 dice]
We're the ones with the blades here.

On the other hand, we could be the good cop again. Vickie certainly has the part of "pissed as fuck knife-nut who would kill you in a blink" down. Maybe we can explain it to him with something like "my friend here can smell how miserable the people here are, and she wants to get rid of the source. But if you cooperate, you won't be a part of that, so she won't have to kill you too."
>>
>>1732252
> Try to calm him [Persuasion against difficulty 11; you may spend for Flickering Acumen]
>>
>>1732252
>Try to calm him [Blow our virtue bonus on this. A knight that tempers their justice with vengence too far will find it a brittle thing, apt to break]
>>
>>1732317
Oh! Right -

If you're looking to use your virtue bonus on a given roll, include it in your vote.

Thank you for both doing this and reminding me, anon.

I should probably put these reminders on her sheet.
>>
>>1732252
>> Try to take Knuckles in alive. Arthur needs to know about this.

>> Write-in?
... but first, try and leverage his desire to protect the girls who've just been freed of their oaths. This'll be a madhouse soon enough, and he wants a decent enough thing to use that for the moment.
>>
>>1732317
Supporting

And also
>try to take Knuckles in alive
He's a hedonistic idiot but he knows what his flaws are and regrets not doing his best to protect others. He has potential to be something better, and Arthur should know that.
>>
>>1732317
>This sounds good
>>
Called. We're trying to calm him down. Roll me 1d10+7 (Virtue bonus spent, Vickie is here to help)
>>
Rolled 10 + 7 (1d10 + 7)

>>1732408
>>
>>1732448
Well, that went better than expected.
>>
>>1732448
Woo, nicely done!
>>
>>1732448
I'm not sure, but I think we might have passed
>>
>>1732448
10+7=17; Critical Success, Overkill
>>
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>>1732252
Blood spreads over the floor, matting the astroturf carpeting. Vickie flashes out pair of knives to replace the three in the corpse - short, curved things more like scalpels than anything else, whose flat beige color suggest ceramic blades more than anything else.

"Put them away, Vickie," you tell her. "We're not here for him. Knuckles, she was the one keeping the girls enslaved. You know that, don't you?"

Knuckles nods, after a moment. He's shaking, but as a rule Ogres, especially Summer Court Ogres, get mad instead of scared, and his titular knuckles are white from how hard his fists are clenched.

"Knuckles, the girls are free of their oaths," you continue, softly. "They are scared, and desperate. If they scatter into the morning mist, they'll get themselves hurt. They know you. Do they trust you?"

"Should they?" Vickie accuses, sharply.

"I ain't ever laid a hand on one o' those girls!" Knuckles bellows. "Not once! Not the boys neither, I'm the security for crissakes. I keep 'em safe! Y'hear me? Safe!"

Vickie nods, after just a moment, and her knives vanish into the depths of her jacket. She pulls her three other blades from Virgo's body and wipes them on the Fairest's blouse before they, too, vanish.

"You didn't haveta go and kill her like that," Knuckles reiterates, more softly.

"I really did, Knuckles," Vickie says with a small sigh. "...Figured it'd feel better, but it never does, does it? Knuckles, lemme tell you something. Those girls are gonna be mad as hell their entire lives, over this. The boys too. And you get to either be the grim reminder of the time they become slaves to someone else again, or the hero that helped save them." She knocks on the space under the desk and opens a small gate to the Hedge there, through which she drags Virgo's corpse. She dumps the body onto the path and folds her arms to wait for the gate to close on its own.

When it snaps shut, she steps aside and gestures for you. You slice the desk in half with a clean cut, destroying the portal in which the gate exists. You look at the Ogre and put a hand on his shoulder.

"They need you now, Knuckles. Close up the hotel. Escort the guests out. Let them know the score and get 'em to the Juniper Building. Vickie and I will be along soon to talk to Arthur about what happened, and why, but right now we need you to run security. Can you do that for us?"

"Yeah," he says at last. "I guess I can. I'll start downstairs, get the staff on board. What's gonna happen to this place?"

"I dunno," you admit. "Presumably there's a mortal owner in here somewhere."

"On paper," Knuckles says. "Virgo really owned it. Records're in that safe there, her ledgers. She stars her 'i's, y'know? Starred, I guess."

You let out a low whistle. "We'll handle it later. That's going to have to be Arthur's call. Knuckles...where did she meet the skeezy bastards?"
>>
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>>1732614
Knuckles lumbers to the door instead of answering right away. He flips a switch on the wall and opens the door, holding it for you and Vickie. The two of you slip through and watch as he shuts the door and locks it.

"There's two groups of 'em," the Ogre says, with the air of a man who's made a decision. "There's the ones here, who stays on the down-low, like. They got a Hollow in the cleaning cabinet of the Red Queen display on the fourth floor, which'll open for yas if you turn the knob left and the key right at the same time. Here." He takes a key off his ring and offers it to you. "Seen her go in and out, of a time or three. But there's another set. Her boyfriend."

"Her what," Vickie says flatly.

"She's all moon-eyed...was all moon-eyed...over this guy," Knuckles explains. "All bright and rainbow colored, like you, but he wore it, you know? Rainbow hair, rainbow clothes, big peacock strut to the guy. From outta town. She comes back one day, mad as hell, and says to me that the minute she can get outta feeding these other guys Glamour she's gonna bomb the hell outta their Hollow for kickin' her boy out. That they don't understand what a vision he's got. And then things got a bit fuzzy 'cause she wanted me to choke her an' I don't really get in for that so it all turned into a bit of a screamin' affair, y'know?"

"I am torn between my need to know more and my need to preserve my limited will to live," Vickie says, after a long moment. "Get to work, Knuckles. We've got things to do too."

The moment he's out of the hallway, Vickie sags against the wall. She sinks to the floor and puts her head in her hands.

"Vick?" you ask, concerned. She pulls her hand down and stares at the drying blood on it.

"I'm a complete bitch, aren't I?" she whispers, almost to herself. "...I said I'm not gonna let you take the heat. I meant it. Let me run herd with Arthur. You don't - you're...look. You've had a rough go of it, okay? Don't go down with me."

"Why would you be going down?" you ask, carefully.

"I just murdered someone on your say-so without so much as a trial or a real investigation, Colors. Fuck you think I am, a mortal cop? I'm out on my ass for this. Badge gone."

> ...Would you do it again?
> I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur
> You did the right thing
> Now's not the time, Vick
> Write-in?
>>
>>1732635
> I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur
We should stand by best girl.
>>
>>1732635
> I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur.

> What you did wasn't right. But it wasn't wrong either. You saved people today. Maybe we could have saved one more, and that's on you, but it doesn't mean no good came out of what you did.
>>
>>1732635
>I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur
>supporting: >>1732730
>Write-in?
>"Remember this feeling."

Because this is exactly what she wants to do to Rachael, and she needs to reflect on that, this time some good came of it, but I really don't see her succeeding against her mother.
>>
I have been Comcasted to fuck and back, and will not be able to update before work. Votes, as you might imagine, remain open.

Questions, comments, discussion, feedback, and criticisms remain welcome and appreciated.

Thank you all for reading and participating!
>>
>>1732635
>> I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur.
>> What you did wasn't right. But it wasn't wrong either. You saved people today. Maybe we could have saved one more, and that's on you, but it doesn't mean no good came out of what you did.
>>"Remember this feeling."
>>
If Vickie /is/ kicked from Summer, I'm fully in support of offering her a place in Spring and our assistance.
>>
>>1733432
She's more likely to be stripped of her rank/job than kicked from the Court. Hence her reference to a 'badge'.
>>
>>1733452
Does that entail a lot of shame and disdain?
>>
>>1733453
Probably, and it's a mark on Arthur's judgement too. It's his new system, after all, and not without its detractors.
>>
>>1733432
I think we might want to take the heat ourselves.

Ramona doesn't have Arthur's problem of being relatively new and needing to defend her rule against detractors, so she wouldn't need to make examples of people as much. Consider the other people high up in the Spring Court. I don't think Natalie is going to have much of a problem with killing Virgo. Cherry is likewise probably not going to object, considering that she probably wanted to do it too.

Colors is the one in charge of this mission, and Virgo is dead because Colors approved of this detour. Yes, Vickie was the one who actually did the deed, but it was under Colors' command and with her approval. Given the somewhat more militant nature of the summer court, I think they would probably accept the superior taking responsibility for the actions of a subordinate.

Also, Colors is the Warlock Knight, her name is already mud. Hell, this might actually be a step up in the eyes of some people in spring who would be more interested in the fact that Carrol's House got shut down than anything else. Sort of like "Yeah, you're oathbreaking scum, but I guess you're useful for at least something. Let the filth do the dirty work."
>>
>>1733602
Vickie also showed great restraint despite nearly boiling over with rage, she waited until we had 100% surety of who held the pledges and even then, she snapped as Virgo was in the process of saying what everyone can agree on would have been "And there's nothing you can do about it." like the greedy uncaring cunt she was.

We don't know the exact details of when she was taken, just that Rachael made the start of her new life a follow up hell from the one they just escaped from.
>>
>>1733261
supporting
>>
>>1732635
> I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur
>>
>>1732730
>>1733261
Supporting.
>>
>>1732635
>> I supported you. I'll be there with Arthur

The Buck Stops Here. We're leader of the group, and that means we take responsibility, at the very least for stuff that we're there for and kinda-sorta authorized.

More than that, we're a Knight. That means we're here to protect people who need protecting—and that's as much about Vickie as it is about the former slaves of Carroll House.

(PS. Vox, Lewis Carroll's name has 2 "l"s at the end, not 1...)
>>
Called, writing.

That's a shockingly unanimous vote.
>>
>>1736065
I wouldn't call it shocking. Vickie is best girl.
>>
>>1732635
You offer your hand out to Vickie. The Darkling looks at her own before she wipes the blood on her pants and accepts the help up. She feels surprisingly light.

"I supported you in this, Vickie," you tell her solemnly. "I will be there to support you before Arthur. But...remember this feeling. I don't know your faith, but in mine kinslaying is one of the worst things you can possibly do, and I would not encourage you down that path. Whatever else Rachael Reeds is or isn't, she's still your mother."

"...I'm gonna file religion under the tequila thing later," Vickie says with a guilty, relieved grin. "But thanks, Colors. For havin' my back."

"You have a lot of tequila topics," you point out.

"You must not know many Darklings. I'm downright fucking gregarious compared to most of my cousins. Hey...why'd you spare Knuckles?"

You rub your wrist unconsciously; there, just before your palm starts, is a mess of glass that slagged and re-set, erasing any - as a random, nonspecific example - marks of allegiance you may have had there once.

"I got a look at his desires and they seemed...better than this," you say at last. "We should move."

"Mm, yeah. I'll file that one under tequila too, then."

You text [4th floor, Red Queen Display] to the other two and get a confirmation from Forum. Then the two of you are moving again. You catch Vickie scrubbing her hands with disposable wipes, which she then puts in her mouth gods in Asgard why with a visible wince and shudder.

"How are you not dead," you say flatly.

"I've digested worse. And this way leaves less evidence."

The hotel isn't exactly in chaos, but you can taste tension and burgeoning violence in the air. You pass Knuckles and some of the girls hauling a client out of a room; they push his clothes into his hands, at which point the Ogre hands him a wad of bills and points meaningfully towards the stairwell.

The Red Queen display is as awful as you might wish for. You recognize the scene it's attempting to portray, in which Alice chases the Red Queen on twisting paths that keep the Queen just ahead of Alice. And they've clearly made a token attempt to create the effect with motorized pathways. The Rook rides one with his hand in his pocket, glaring grim fucking death at Forum while the Troll doubles over laughing.

"He's just, look at him, he's like a tiny hate statue," Forum gestures helplessly. "He hasn't moved for like eighty seconds, he doesn't even blink!"

"Forum, why are you antagonizing the man who would be King in Autumn?" Vickie asks, pointedly.

"I lost my will to live?" Forum offers, with a shrug.

You can see the door you're after. Now you've got some decisions to make.

> Go shock and awe (Athletics at difficulty 10)
> Announce yourselves and attempt to parley
> Open the door just enough for Vickie to get the scent, then approach it from another Gate in the Hedge
> Write-in?
>>
>>1736383
You've said this a couple of times now, I don't suppose I could persuade you to expand on it?

Also I'ma pass the fuck out now. See y'all tomorrow; votes remain open.
>>
>>1736583
A few reasons, mainly that I think she's funny and I find her sass-blasting endearing. She plays off of Colors very well, both in a light-hearted way (poking at Colors' more sexual side, for example) and in a more serious way (the brief argument regarding Fancy, her desire to kill Virgo and what that did and didn't make her feel, etc.). She's sort of a lively rogue who doesn't hold back, and that works well with Colors, who acts like a more upstanding knight but has her deviancy very poorly hidden just under the surface.
>>
>>1736581
Oh, and since I should probably vote too
> Open the door just enough for Vickie to get the scent, then approach it from another Gate in the Hedge
>>
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>>1736581
Jesus why such a high athletics roll. Did we knock first and they're expecting us?

> Gotta roll 7+ on one roll

Fuck it, let's go for it anyways. We have anyone that wants to help us out for some fun times and revenge? Or do we have any flashbangs etc?

> Go shock and awe with whore backup
>>
>>1736581
>Go shock and awe (Athletics at difficulty 10)
>>
>>1736581
So, Vox: If we can just open the door for Vickie to get the scent without a roll, what's the athletics roll for? The door can't be locked, and I assume it doesn't concern moving in, since you've told us nothing about the room or it's layout.
>>
>>1736810
> Like opening the door wouldn't tip them off in that case

I mean, if you're going to open the door then you might as well smash it down. Not like they're going to be all like "Hey, shits going down outside and somebody was peeking in. Let's just carry on, situation normal".

Unless we plan to follow these dudes back to whoever is in turn behind THEM.

Through the Wild.

No thanks.
>>
>>1736581
>Go shock and awe (Athletics at difficulty 10)
After some thinking and >>1736814
I change my vote.
>>
>>1736581
> Go shock and awe (Athletics at difficulty 10)
"Hands up, criminals! We're agents of the Crown, don't be a fool!"
Or alternatively:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OCsMKypvmB0
>>
>>1736812
There's a difference between quietly opening the door (on the reasonable guess that they're not staring at the opening at all times) so Vickie can inhale deeply vs. opening the door and immediately rushing the place based on the theory that you can move faster than their defenses and wards.
>>
>>1737220
"defenses and wards" meaning magic/wyrd stuff?
Hadn't thought of that. Thanks for the clarification.
>>
Alright folks, let's start this party.

Gimmie 1d10+3, twice.
>>
Rolled 10 + 3 (1d20 + 3)

>>1737393
>>
Rolled 9 + 3 (1d10 + 3)

>>1737397
wring dice, fuck me sideways
>>1737393
>>
>>1737401
aaaand double up, spelling error there
>>
Rolled 9 + 3 (1d10 + 3)

>>1737393
>>
> Double nines
This pleases me.

9+3 = 12; Success with Style. Writing.
>>
>>1737393
>>1737401
>>1737445
> double 12s
Hopefully this time we can smash our way in shouting FORSOOTH.
>>
>>1737449
[Intensely knighting]
>>
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>>1736581
You motion for the Rook; he steps off the moving path and takes his hand out of his pocket. You hand the key to the closet over to Forum. "Turn the key right and the knob left at the same time, on my signal," you tell him. "We're gonna go in hot."

"Nice," Vickie says with a wide grin. Forum nods and gets ready at the door while Vickie and the Rook hang back. You draw Bifrost and keep it ready in your left hand while you hold your other up with three fingers.

Two.

One.

Go!

Forum twists the key and knob and wrenches the door open, spilling candle-light and a thin haze of smoke from fireplaces into the hallways. You dash in and hop over the thin gleam of a tripwire, turning as you go.

Bifrost cuts the shotgun pointing at the doorway in half, cleaving through the double barrel and spilling buckshot all over the floor.

You turn and keep moving, sweeping past the three hung-up coats and the low shelf upon which are four sets of boots. A cloakroom, then.

You kick the lock of the door on the other side of the room, which trickles smoke through its frame. Wood splinters as the door flies open; you duck beneath the gout of smoke released and rise, uppercutting at the man-shaped thing startling towards the door in the haze. Bone breaks, and you feel the glass of your knuckles flex and crack, but at the end of the blur of motion you've laid Sam the Sliced out on the floor, and out fucking cold.

His friends include a tall Stonebones Ogre hefting her shotgun with professional disdain, a bent-back Wizened pulling a blade from his broom, and a rangy Beast with the look of a jackal, currently diving for a pair of cages in which are wolves with obsidian fur.

The room is long and low, like a feast hall, with a great flame in the center and candles that float through the air. They roar to furious life as the battle joins, turning the place into a smoke-strewn sweathouse.

"Yield, evildoers!" you demand. The Stonebones levels her shotgun, and you dive aside just in time for the wall behind you to become a mess of elf-shot. Trees start to grow where the rounds hit.

Oh it's fucking on now.

> Go for the Wizened [Melee vs. difficulty 11]
> Use Call Glass to suck in the hotel windows from outside into the fight [4 Glamour]
> Use Goblin's Malignance to turn one on another [2 Glamour, pick a target and a victim; Wyrd against difficulty ???, anger the Summer Court]
> Stop the Beast [Opposed Athletics]
> Write-in?
>>
>>1737844
> Use Call Glass to suck in the hotel windows from outside into the fight [4 Glamour]
>>
>>1737844
> > Use Call Glass to suck in the hotel windows from outside into the fight [4 Glamour]
> Send Vickie after the Beast, Forum tags the Wizened, and Rook gives the Ogre a lesson in pain.
> Make sure to double-tap Sam, either finishing him off or keeping him unconscious for capture and trial before the Courts.

Am I right in believing that those are Briarwolves, or are they simply animals who have been changed by the Hedge? Because if so, we can possibly just release them back into the Hedge. Or if they've been harmed/abused, put them out of their misery, and loot the remains for magical stuff.
>>
>>1737844
> Use Call Glass to suck in the hotel Windows from the outside into the fight [4 Glamour]
>>
> Go for the Wizened [Melee vs. difficulty 11]

Using Call Glass is going to utterly empty out our Glamour. Melee is actually a reasonable option, because we have our base +3, the +1 specialization from multiple enemies, and the +1 from using Bifrost for a grant total of +5.

Also, since we haven't seem to put it up...
> Activate Armor of Glass's Fury via it's catch

Say, Vox, have you been keeping an eye on the second edition of Changeling: the Lost? They've been releasing teasers of mechanics and it looks neat.
>>
>>1736581
>>1733452
Quick question. A boon is supposed to be delivered to each member of the crew once they figure out and stop the teenage kidnappings right? Would it be possible for Vickie and colors to use that boon to at least mitigate the punishment they would receive for what is effectively an extra-judicial execution?
>>
>>1737844
>> Stop the Beast [Opposed Athletics]
>>
>>1737962
You can roll me Occult (1d10+1 twice) and we'll see if you know what you're looking at off the top of your head or not.

>>1738088
Not too much of an eye, no. Additionally, Bifrost doesn't give you another +1 - it gives you another die, so that on Melee rolls with it you roll 3d10 rather than just 2.

>>1738110
That depends on if you think it is within Misery Monroe's power to force King Arthur to do what you want.
>>
Rolled 8 + 1 (1d10 + 1)

>>1738128
Hey, why not?

Is it possible to tame or befriend any non-intelligent critters native to the Hedge? I'm currently reading up in the White Wolf Wiki, but I figured I'd ask anyway just to get your personal spin on it.
>>
>>1738128
Also, in the situation of the team being under the command of all four monarchs (though bound by Misery's oath), wouldn't it be up to all four of them to lay judgement? Or does the Big Man In Charge hat still currently belong to Arthur?
>>
>>1737844
Wait a second..
> ..a rangy Beast with the look of a jackal, currently diving for a pair of cages in which are wolves with obsidian fur.

Obsidian is volcanic glass. If these things are part-Fae creatures like the Changelings are, would Colors powers over glass also effect them? If they are successfully released by the jackal dude, Colors might be the best one to fight or calm the wolves, if I'm thinking right.
>>
Rolled 9 + 1 (1d10 + 1)

>>1738128
>>
>>1738178
Monroe promised the favor. He was rather explicit about it.

>>1738188
...Here I meant in terms of coloration. That was my bad.

>>1738172
Yes! There's even a Merit for it in the base game.
>>
>>1738088
Also I'll back >>1737844
This if we're moving ahead.
>>
>>1738216
Eh, its cool. Something to keep in mind for later though, if we run into any Fae or critters made of glass like Colors later.
>>
>>1738188
Might as well let the beast let them out of their cages for us then while we shank this wizened dude.
>>
>>1738211
Excellent.

These are Shadow Wolves, which are blessedly outside of their ideal environment. These vicious bastards kill for pleasure and hunt in packs, favoring darkness and terror as their primary weapons. The bright lights of this room will weaken them. Normally you only see them in groups as small as three - whatever these militia men did to capture two, it must have been a hell of a fight.
>>
>>1738234
So. . . Can we manipulate their glass fur to freeze them in place? 3 glamour which we currently have.
>>
>>1738234
Oh yeah, let's definitely not let them out of that cage. And if they're that cruel, maybe we can just kill the bastards and turn the pelts/bones into nifty stealth gear for Vickie.

I'll leave such decisions to a vote, obviously. Killing someone trapped in a cage, regardless of nature, is a very not nice thing to be doing, and some of our group might not support such a thing. Hell, Vickie might like dogs...

SKOLL AND HATI RETURN!
>>
>>1738253
See >>1738216. Their fur is not glass, just absurdly black.
>>
>>1738253
>>1738216
Sorry I'm exhausted and missed the colouration clarification.

Still think we should melee the wizened.

Get Vicky to stop the Beast.

Forum and The Rook can pin down Trolly McShotgun while that's happening.
>>
>>1738273
Capturing these guys alive might actually be for the best. They can possibly give us more info on the Rainbow dude.

Also, >>1738234
I just read their page on the wiki, and these guys are HUGE assholes, even for fae critters.
>>
>>1738273
Supporting. Lock down their mage with our warrior so that can't do sneaky stuff, play type vs type.
>>
>>1738088
>This
>>
Aight, we appear to be three and three on melee vs. Call Glass. I'll give this until 11:45 EST to break the tie, then I'm gonna go for it.
>>
>>1738762
Or someone voted while I was posting.

CALLED.

Roll me 1d10+4 three times.
>>
Rolled 3 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1738763
>>
Rolled 1 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1738763
>>
Rolled 1 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1738763
>>
Rolled 2 + 4 (1d10 + 4)

>>1738763
I think I can I think I can...
>>
>>1738796
>>1738799
>>1738813
>>1738857
....What the fuck?

That's just not fair. Like, at all. Horry shiet mang.
>>
Well.

This is gonna hurt.

3+4=7; Failure.

Writing.
>>
>>1738877
So, uh, who agrees to activate that one ability to add on 4 more health next turn?
>>
>>1738886
Sounds like it could be a good idea
>>
>>1738890
Wait a minute, where's that? I can't find it in the char sheet
>>
>>1738894
Very top, in our seeming
>>
>>1738902
Oh yeah, Elemental Resilience
I is blind and stupid
>>
What the hell, I go away for a few hours and this happens.

It's like you people didn't remember to sacrifice a goat to the dice gods.
>>
Okay, I gotta write this in the morning. I'm very sorry. VOTES REMAIN CALLED
>>
>>1738864
Just saying.

We should look into getting some flashbangs and such.

But yeah it isn't fair, and that's okay.
>>
>>1739081
It's okay. This sort of failure is good for players.

The best plans are the ones that let you survive when they fail.

We still outnumber them 4 - 3 so one of our bros can cover for us a bit.
>>
Hokay. Sorry about last night and in turn today because I'm going to work in 20 minutes and there is no way I'm gonna update now. Thread is open for Q&A, which I am actively encouraging.

You have to remember, I've played this setting for years on years on years to the point where I can no longer easily distinguish between common knowledge and obscure lore. Your questions are welcomed specifically so I can try and impart more of this information to you without trying to orbital drop a Changeling 101 lecture.

Other comments, discussion, feedback, and criticisms remain, of course, welcome and appreciated.

Thank you all for reading and participating!
>>
Well, we can surmise, wiki, and extrapolate some of the more common terms you've been slinging around. But how about a more involved explanation about hollows, hedge fruit, and hedgespun items?
>>
>>1739864
Oooo~. This might take a few posts since I'm a phone at work, but here goes.

To speak broadly, a Hollow is a part of the Hedge which has been cleared for the use of one or more beings, but which is not a path. They range from literal closets to treetop cities or even roving mechanical fortresses. In the most technical of senses, one might consider the Thorn-Towns and Goblin Markets formed and populated by the natives of the Hedge to be Hollows - they meet all the technical requirements - but the term is almost solely used to refer to those made by and for Changelings and/or the Gentry.

Hollows offer a lot of advantages. In them, a Changeling might have a home or bolt-hole, luxurious magical amenities made possible by the Hedge, a fortress, a storage facility, places to work on magical objects and research, private gardens, freedom from mortal concerns, or even fast travel through the mortal world via keyed doors. They tend to be highly personal, shaped as they are by the psychoactive nature of the Hedge, by the Wyrd of those who make and claim them, and by the preferences, hobbies, and fears of their creators.

It is not uncommon to see Hollows made and maintained for an entire Motley rather than one Lost, for a variety of reasons including sharing the workload. Courts or entire Freeholds will also maintain them, ranging from the Winter Cottages used as bolt-holes to Grand Freehold Commons used for events or dwelling places.

Because many Lost struggle with poverty or even homelessness, a Hollow can provide a much-needed touch of luxury, safety, and control that is absent from their lives, but this is also a seductive danger. Too many tales are told of reclusive Hedge-dwelling Lost dragged from Hollows they thought safe - or ones who vanish without a trace, with their things packed up neatly and no sign of a struggle. The survivors of St. Louis lost their entire Freehold to such an event, to which they still have no answers.
>>
>>1739674
That's okay Vox. We like orbital bombardments. SPECIFICALLY ON ARCADIAN FUCKTARDS! HUMANITY FTW!!

>>1740144
Ouch. Sounds like St. Louis might have either been infiltrated by loyalists, or they might have become too much like the Hobs and other Fae, and abandoned the human world.

Does time move the same way in the Hedge as it does in the mortal world? Because I imagine that a very bookish or occult-obsessed scholar, or even an entire guild of like-minded researchers, could set up a Hollow where time moves like molasses, allowing them to rest and work for weeks in their private college while only a couple days may pass in the real world.

Also, I've been reading a bit of the wiki, and I saw the Banished; those True Fae who have been exiled from Arcadia or left of their own free will, all because they had become too much like humans. But, specifically, my question was whether there have ever been True Fae who could be called an 'ally' to the Courts.
>>
>>1739864
And part two, Hedgespun!

'Hedgespun' is anything made primarily of materials gleaned from the Hedge or forged together through the impossible qualities of the Hedge. The most common are raiments and armor - gowns of woven snowflakes, a basilisk-hide bodysuit, Colors' own twilight mail - but there are such things as Hedgespun weaponry and automotons. Once upon a time, these objects were protected by the Mask, but no longer. They're still a symbol of status and prowess in Changeling society, and most Lost would not be caught dead without at least one article of Hedgespun at a formal event.

Mechanically, they are little different from Tokens, though they do tend to be flashier and more distinctive.
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>>1739864
And part three!

Hedge Fruits are, simply put, fruits and vegetables that grow in the Hedge. Many, though not all, exhibit beneficial or baneful magical properties. All have unusual and otherworldly flavors and textures. Hedge fruits were also once protected by the Mask, but no longer. Unfortunately, it appears to remain true that mortals cannot benefit or suffer from their magical effects.

Curiously, there are several varieties of fruits and vegetables that provide healing or Glamour, with local varieties often being cultivated and traded by various Lost. There is a strong canning/preserving subculture in New Avalon, which helps the fruit last longer and sometimes can be used to creatively combine them.

If it can move, think, or otherwise behave on its own, it's a hobgoblin or Hedge Beast, even though it's a plant.
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>>1740508
Time can be odd between the Hedge and Earth, which is another advantage of a keyed Hollow. Things might slow down or speed up, distorting time for weeks in either direction. Tales circulate of Lost who, as mortals, caught sight of someone wearing their own face, pursued that person into the Hedge, only to be captured and witness the creation of the Fetch that lured them in. Hollows are usually more stable, and staying closer to the mortal world keeps you closer to mortal time. The strange and mighty Contracts of Hours can let you cheat the clock as well.

More on the rest later.
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>>1740508
> But, specifically, my question was whether there have ever been True Fae who could be called an 'ally' to the Courts.

No, though the optics on this aren't necessarily what one might think. There's a section in, I wanna say Autumn Nightmares, about if it's possible to feel sympathy for the Fae or even love one.

And the thing is, sure. You can, but They cannot, and that's kinda the problem. A Changeling takes a lover from amongst the Banished. She loves the Fae, and the Fae thinks it loves her, but it's doomed before it can live. The Fae have no empathy, no ability to relate to another being's pain or pleasure. To honestly have love, friendships, or even allies as we'd understand them they would require those things which they do not have and cannot have and will never have. At some point, the Changeling makes a careless mistake, or does something arcane that offends her lover, and she is slain or stolen, and that is that.

It is true that sometimes, cunning and deadly Banished infiltrate Changeling society or use the free Lost as pawns, but they play a game as dangerous to them as their victims when the Others roll those dice. They can never truly hide for long.

Writing.
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>>1737844
You take it all in, then start calling orders.

"Vickie, dogs! Forum, Rook, lock down the Ogre!"

"Freeholders," the Stonebones spits. You dash towards her Wizened ally, zagging to put the fire between you and her shotgun. The ploy works; she snarls and aims past you, taking a shot at Vickie, but your Darkling ally (friend? You distantly realize, in one of those odd thank-you-for-the-irrelevant-information moments that brains provide, that she has told you two stories about what happened to her family) drops into a slide tackle that scythes the jackal-eared Beast to the ground. Vickie's knife flashes high, and then the two of them are rolling across the floor in a mass of claws, blades, and curses.

Your own foe awaits.

The bent old Wizened sways away from your opening slash, moving with surprising agility for someone who looks like he just got up from being petrified in fucking amber. He gives ground in small steps, staying inches away from Bifrost. His bark-brown eyes never waver from yours.

You draw back to change tactics, and that's when he strikes. The old man lashes out with the thin shortsword in his hand, slashing high. You parry cleanly, only to feel a cold pain against your ribs. You pull back, bleeding from the torso beneath a new-made chink in your mail, and see the glint of steel in the bristles of the broom he's just stabbed you with.

You suffer 3 damage. Your armor reduces it to 1

"Go home, youngblood," the old Wizened tells you in a tired voice. "I have no quarrel with you."

"Yield," you demand. The wound is shallow - you can still fight. "You can expect fair and honorable treatment from me and mine if you throw down your weapons and yield."

The old man sighs and settles his stance, with the broom leveled at you and his blade at the ready. "Youngbloods," he mutters. "Come and claim me if you want me, Warlock Knight."

Great. They've heard of you too. Fucking. Gods.

Forum is dancing a deadly dance with the shotgun-wielding Stonebones. You catch Forum taking the butt of the gun into his chest before he gets kicked into the bonfire. The Troll screams and staggers away, shedding his flaming jacket before he flings it right at his enemy. A cold-hearted blast shreds the garment and flecks Forum's upflung arms with bleeding wounds that sprout thirsty saplings, red with his blood.

You can't attend to him. The old Wizened holds his stance, and the two of you circle warily, eyes on each other's. You're taller, and your blade is longer, both of which ought to be advantages, but there's something cold and ancient in the old man's eyes, and it tempers your valor with discretion. He easily parries a testing chop and forces you back away from his stabbing spear, the tip still concealed amongst his broom bristles.
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>>1742515
You feel the air pressure change. The gate to the hotel has snapped shut, meaning anyone who wants out will have to open it back up from this side - and also that no one out there can hear you anymore. You step in, slashing his spear down, levering your blade to slam the pommel into his face.

The old Wizened moves like a sighing breeze, tipping away from your attack with a tired disdain. His shortsword rakes across your thigh, making your knee buckle, and you catch the haft of his spear across your face.

You suffer 2 damage. You gain GOBSMACKED.

You roll away from his follow-up and get some distance by kicking scattered coals at the old Woodwalker. Once again the two of you stand at a distance, circling in a cautious dance.

You hear the roar of the flame and the boom of the shotgun over the feral sounds of Vickie and her prey, but now you're not taking your eyes off of the old man.

"Go home, youngblood," he repeats, softly. Those bark-brown eyes fill with a mossy green that streaks through them like veins.

> Try to get around him (Athletics vs. his Melee; you roll at +3 and may spend for Flickering Acumen)
> Use Goblin's Malignance to redirect the rage of the Stonebones on him (Wyrd vs. difficulty 9. 1 Glamour, anger the Summer Court)
> Take a more defensive stance (Gain WARY, Melee vs. Difficulty 11)
> Overwhelm him (Gain GLORY, Melee vs. Difficulty 11)
> Write-in?

AND

> Expend 1 Glamour to active Elemental Resilience
> Do not

CURRENT STATUS
Health: 5/8 (-1)
Current Glamour: 4/13
RESTED (+0), GOBSMACKED (-1 to Melee, Perception, and Athletics rolls)

Sheet: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1gq9ZEFrwnYjQpSeuMg1a_7UepedMrQUSEwbrHWntFCo/edit
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>>1742576
>Overwhelm him
and
>Expend 1 Glamour to activate Elemental Resilience

Go big or go home
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And now I pass out. Votes, obviously, remain open.

Questions, comments, discussion, feedback, and criticisms remain welcome and appreciated.

Thank you all for reading and participating!
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>>1742576
We would have to roll a 9 or 10 to succeed on the latter two options, so probably not a good idea.

> Use Goblin's Malignance to redirect the rage of the Stonebones on him (Wyrd vs. difficulty 9. 1 Glamour, anger the Summer Court)
Might help take two of them out of the fight, letting us gang up on the remainder.
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>>1742576
This:
>>1742600
>Overwhelm him
>Expend 1 Glamour to activate Elemental Resilience
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>>1742629
But you can manipulate your odds too. Resilience cleans up the wound penalty (for now...), and those statuses will influence the rolls or their outcomes.
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>>1742641
At best that only evens up the odds while still only hitting one of the enemies. We have a similar chance of success on something that will hinder both the wizened and the stonebones. That will help more in the larger fight and maybe avoid losses. This isn't just a collection of duels, we can and should try to help the rest of our team.
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>>1742641
Also, Vox, the status is in the doc twice
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Rolled 5 (1d10)

>>1742576
> Overwhelm him (Gain GLORY, Melee vs. Difficulty 11)
> Expend 1 Glamour to active Elemental Resilience
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>>1742576
> Overwhelm him (Gain GLORY, Melee vs. Difficulty 11)
> Expend 1 Glamour to activate Elemental Resilience.
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>>1742576
>> Take a more defensive stance (Gain WARY, Melee vs. Difficulty 11)
>> Expend 1 Glamour to active Elemental Resilience

Not going for Glory; this guy is a bag of tricks and will punish any opening we leave - and who knows with what? Wizened are tricky. Just because we're tough doesn't mean we should invite him to hit us with his best shot, because it may be against type aqnd not seomthing we can handle.
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>>1742759
Fixed.

You expend 1 Glamour and gain Elemental Resilience. You gain GLORY (+3 on Melee checks made to attack, -2 on defensive checks).

Roll me 1d10+6 3 times.
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Rolled 6 + 6 (1d10 + 6)

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Rolled 3 (1d10)

>>1743364
>>
Rolled 8 + 6 (1d10 + 6)

>>1743364
I forgot how to roll, been a while.
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8+6=14; Success!

Writing.
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>>1742576
Your foe is expecting you to play this game his way, where he can beat you with experience. You know about the advantages of age and treachery, but youth can beat it in the short run, if you don't let him drag it out. So you won't.

"Freya!" you roar, as you snap forward with a two-handed slash fit to cleave the Wizened's arm from his shoulder. He parries with surprising strength, but that's fine - you plant your boot in his chest and feel the flex of bone pushed past its limit. He goes sailing back into the wooden wall, scattering floating candles and shards of amber.

You deal 2 damage.

You catch the Stonebones aiming at you as you rush to keep the pressure on, but before she can fire her gun withers, rusting in a phantom breeze that peels it in strips and turns the wood of its stock into rotting sludge in her hands. She curses, throwing her weapon away, as the candles in the room gutter and shiver in a phantom breeze.

The Rook has joined the fray, and his Wyrd ripples out before him, taking the blazing longhouse and transforming it. Cobwebs sprout from the rafters, laced with fiber optics and dripping with heavy quarters and tickets, and the breeze that blows through the place is thick with the scent of sweat and flame, and the rattle-ring of coins in machines.

"You will all suffer," the Rook promises. He clenches his fist, candle-light and leaves swirling from his Mantle in a rising whirlwind, and the Stonebones lets out a choking, gasping sound.

It's the opening you need. The Woodwalker starts towards his ally, taking a fruit from inside his jacket, only to be arrested by your attack. His desperate parry ends with his spear snapped in half beneath Bifrost's blade, and he takes a sucker punch across the jaw for his trouble.

You deal 2 damage. Your enemy gains GOBSMACKED.

Down to just his shortsword, the old man gives ground before your furious assault. You can see his arm shake with every deflecting parry, see him trying to calculate his angles out while the Stonebones sinks to her knees, coughing and gasping, her voice increasingly dry and hoarse as she fails to form words.

You feint high and slash low, ripping a line across the Woodwalker's shins that bites into the bone. He lets out a strangled sound of pain and hits his knees, barely managing to parry your followup slash.

The Ogre passes out, hand outstretched towards the Rook, begging for mercy she can't find in his flat, television screen eye.

"We yield!" the old man calls, throwing down his blade. "We yield!"

> Call off your allies
> Finish the job
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>>1743422
> Call off your allies
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>>1743425
supporting, but make it an immediate Oath of nonagression and nonescape from them for 10 minutes before you yield.
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>>1743426
Shortest duration is a day & a night, but noted.
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>>1743429
Ah, that then. Was thinking 'short enough to be an easy clinch w/o being a long term decision.'
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>>1743422
>Call off your allies

Worried about Forum and Vickie.
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>>1743422
>> Call off your allies
it's the knightly thing to do
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> Call off your allies
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>>1743422
> Call off your allies
This isn't quite over yet, we still haven't found their rainbow peacock leader. Make them swear on their names: they won't die if they break their word, but they might come to wish it did.
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>>1743422
> Call off your allies
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>>1743422
> Call off your allies, push for a pact of compliance and surrender

So... How does elemental resilience work with sustained damage? We had 8 health, took 3, gained four which made us 9/12. When it wears off, are we 5/8 again or do we heal from it and be 8/8? If we were 4/12 and it wears off, would we die?
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>>1743422
>> Call off your allies, push for a pact of compliance and surrender
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>>1743675
Damage you sustain is still sustained. With enough Glamour it could be the difference between life and death, offering enough time to get to a doctor or to healing fruits or Contracts, but you do have to be careful to not let it lapse and then inconveniently pass out or die, yes.

Called, writing new thread. This one's buried pretty deep.
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>>1744496
Speaking of fruits, we should definitely tear this place apart for any useful loot, especially healing fruits for Forum and potentially Vickie, depending on how nasty any of those hits from the Beast were. We also want to make sure that any of our new prisoners injuries were lethal, like making sure the old Wizened's broken ribs didn't puncture a lung.
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NEW THREAD

>>1744605
>>1744605
>>1744605
>>1744605




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