Thursday, July 29, 2021

Story Post: Drol’s First Expedition

As the moon rose over Zahndorf, a hooded figure rode its horse at a flat gallop towards the Cathedral. Father Bartlemas had been awakened and was stationed at the door; his hand shook as he grasped the silver crucifix tightly in his hand. The stranger dismounted and strode purposefully up the steps, but Bartlemas tried to stand in its way; “Why are you here”, he cried, but the hooded figure barely broke its stride on the marble, only tilted up its head to reveal a slight smile made of razor-sharp incisors. “Demon, this is a place of God,” stammered the cleric, taking a fearful half-step back, but as he did so he felt a hand at his back - for suddenly, the stranger wasn’t on the steps any more, it was behind him, its cool hand on the back of his head, peeling back the hair on his scalp to reveal the tattoo that the demon has placed upon his skin. “Ah,” said the stranger in a neutral, emotionless voice, “Well, since you asked… I’m here to kill Dracula.”

Moments later, the body of the priest was cooling on the marble of his own defiled Cathedral, and the traveller was moving intently towards the cellar, the other clerics all now keen to make themselves scarce. At the entrance to the cellar it found a chest with a family crest emblazoned on it in red and blue - “The von Nestors”, said the stranger, before muttering an incantation and carefully opening it. Inside it found a Depleted Ring of Warding, which it pocketed, before heading down.

The Crypt Entrance was a dazzling display of purloined religious icons, many of which had been defiled. The stranger threw back its hood, to reveal an ageless, androgynous face framed by straight black hair, and the distinctive long teeth of a vampire: Drol Eripmav. Drol surveyed the scene and found evidence of footprints: at least two sets, human, and others besides, heading in all four directions. But the south and west exits had been barricaded, and the footprints had been east recently, so it headed north.

To the north it found itsself in a weirdly featureless room whose floor was streaked with blood. It immediately spotted a Vampire Lord’s sigil; it pressed the ring against it, dispelling its magic, just before a swarm of small hockey-puck like creatures with razor-sharp mandibles sprung out of the walls, gathering around it and slicing deep into its flesh, causing a Grievous Injury and damaging its now-empty item pouch. Swearing, it leapt away with superhuman speed, to a ledge containing an average chest; it opened it to fid a Roc’s Feather and then made a hasty retreat north. A glyph owned by the Vampire Lords lemonfanta, Jumble and Clucky responded to the violence.

Here it found itself in the midst of a recent rockfall. Large chunks of masonry were still falling, but Drol was more agile than that; it easily sidestepped the worst of the wreckage, but still tripped over some light scree, taking a Light Wound.

He passed through the Blinding Cave, a chamber of burnished light, and then down into the Nullith, in which it found and slaughtered a Statue of a Distorted Idol. It headed west from there, looking with a blank lack of surprised at a blood-splattered chicken coop, before an enchantment in the room activated and forced it back into the Nullith. From there it headed South.

He crossed over a rickety bridge, slipping and incurring a Light Wound as it did so. “Death by a thousand cuts,” it muttered, failing to notice an average chest on an outcropping as it made its exit.

The bridge took it south, to the Cliff Edge, where it paused and admired the vista of the Zahn as is weaved through the rock beneath it. Then another small rock separated from the overhang above and struck it on the shoulder. “It’s almost like you don’t want me here,” it said dryly as it tended to its Light Wound. It spotted a door leading back into the crypt to the east, and took it.

The Entrance Vestibule was diminished by the presence within it of a huge-hulking beast, whose elephantine tusks were pocked with shards of masonry. A stair muncher! Drol knew that it was not strong enough to face this adversary head on - but wait. There was an average chest tucked into the recess where a statue of a young woman had once stood; silently, Drol slipped into the shadow and kicked it open, finding a Holy Tincture. It grimaced, but swilled it down; the blessed drink burned on the way down, but it still filled it with vitality. “Now,” it said, holding out a hand and issuing a psychic command to its weapon, a razor-thin ivory blade that, of its own volition, sprung from its scabbard and whistled into the air, curving and flowing before - with a sickening jolt - slamming itself right into the eye of the Stair Muncher, killing it instantly. Drol took a moment to acknowledge the gigantic beast before continuing to the east.

The next room was a well made of a shattered spiral staircase, in the centre of which was a deep pool of blood. In the middle of that pool, Drol could see a figure, bathing - a humanoid figure, with long blonde hair and a flowing moustache. The figure heard Drol enter and turned to face it, and suddenly Drol found itself - the first person in centuries - looking into the face of Dracula. No words were exchanged before combat was met, but the young wanderer was no match for the feared conqueror of the steppes; after a few moments in which it took three Light Wounds from its own weapon, Drol hissed and leapt for the east exit. Dracula did not pursue it, but if found itself immediately in a dead end - so had no choice but to go back and incur three more Light Wounds. It limped away into the Entrance Vestibule and then made good its escape.

Remembering the crest of von Nestor that it had seen, it decided to seek out the local chapter of that storied family and seek assistance.

Vampire Lord - Puissance - Influence
Brendan - 1 - 0
Chiiika - 2 - 3
Clucky - 4 - 15
Jumble - 3 - 9
Kevan - 2 - 4
lemonfanta - 2 - 9
Raven1207 - 1 - 0

Comments

ais523:

30-07-2021 21:07:17 UTC

Could an admin please unidle me?

Josh: he/they

30-07-2021 21:11:11 UTC

You were rendered idle at 16:08 on 27 July, which is less than the 4 days required by the rule Idle Vampire Lords.

Of course, that rule measures from the time of the request, but as the request was made privately I can’t verify it.

I’ll therefore either enact this tomorrow at or after 16:08, or let Brendan carry it out at the appropriate time.

Josh: he/they

30-07-2021 21:21:21 UTC

Although technically Brendan could not have made you idle, as you didn’t “ask to become Idle in an entry or comment”. So arguably you should have been active for the past four days anyway.

Josh: he/they

30-07-2021 21:23:36 UTC

Proposal: Betterment of the Ruleset, one Proposal at a Time #Replacement_Edition [Appendix] was therefore illegally failed, and thus hasn’t been open for voting for the requisite amount of time to be legally failed, either.

That all sounds very complicated! I’m going to bed.

ais523:

30-07-2021 21:29:55 UTC

The idle request was made on the blog, as required: https://blognomic.com/archive/an_offer#comments

ais523:

30-07-2021 21:30:30 UTC

(And yes, the unidle request was over 4 days after the idle request.)

Kevan: City he/him

30-07-2021 21:31:20 UTC

I’ve unidled Ais523, quorum remains 5.

Josh: he/they

30-07-2021 21:35:32 UTC

Ah; missed it. Good.