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AoM
13th of August, 2010, 21:40
We consult the oracle:

An Unquiet Past

The father of a child possessed by a voracious spirit.

The convocation of a ruins' ghouls, gaunts, and wisps.

An unsavory treasure seeker, with an honest map.

A slow moving caravan with many wagons and travelers.

Sample Characters (You may take one of these, or create your own so long as it is in line with the Oracle's words.)

The father of the possessed child

The possessed child

The voracious spirit

The summoner at the ruins

A ghoul, gaunt, or wisp.

The unsavory treasure-seeker.

The honest map (if it happens to be a person).

The caravan leader.

A caravan guard.

A member of the caravan.

Croaker
13th of August, 2010, 22:26
Is the voracious spirit the same one that's inhabiting Raziel?

I'll take the summoner at the ruins.

Darius
13th of August, 2010, 23:33
I'll take the voracious spirit.

AoM
14th of August, 2010, 00:42
It (the spirit) can be the same spirit if Darius wants it to be.

Explosive Cheese
14th of August, 2010, 07:37
I'll be a wisp.

Croaker
14th of August, 2010, 07:44
Ooh, ooh, I think the summoner is the treasure hunter. He's summoning the dead to guide him through the ruins of a necropolis!

Explosive Cheese
14th of August, 2010, 08:40
Cool. I'm one of his summons then.

Croaker
14th of August, 2010, 09:16
And I think he may be a younger Akihiqar, or at least of the same order of artifact-hunting priests as Akihiqar is from.

If it is Akihiqar, then he gets Sympathy at significance 2 (and I will make it Potent).

TagalongDT
14th of August, 2010, 11:32
I'll be the Honest Map. That sounds...interesting to say the least.

AoM
14th of August, 2010, 11:57
Okay so we have the Voracious Spirit that is possessing a boy. Why have you possessed this boy? To what purpose?

We have an unsavory treasure seeker who has summoned ghouls and ghasts and wisps at a ruins to help him. He might be a younger Akihiqar, though I'd like an explanation why a younger Akihiqar would have stronger skills in Sympathy?

One of those is a wisp with strong interests in the events going on. It has been summoned, but just how bound to the summons is it? What exactly IS a wisp, according to Cheese?

Tag is the Treasure Seeker's Honest Map. Just what ARE you?

******

I will start fleshing out the other NPCs.

Explosive Cheese
14th of August, 2010, 14:23
Maybe wisps are the spirits of very old trees, trees old enough to attain some kind of soul, which have died, especially in a violent way (such as being cut down for wood). This leaves them resentful of the world that murdered them, and thus bound to it. Normally their minds are not things humans can comprehend, being tree spirits, but when a human summons them through magic, the link to the summoner imparts to them a more human mindset. This allows them to fulfil their duties as a summoned spirit. (Feel free to offer improvements or changes, this is just off the top of my head)

This particular wisp is very tightly bound to the summons. Either by accident or design, the treasure hunter invoked a tight connection to the wisp he summoned, allowing the wisp to think almost as a human, and to be able to translate it's more tree-like thoughts and emotions to human terms, but leaving him very tightly bound to the treasure hunter. The wisp must remain close at all times, and has not the strength to escape (the summons acts as a spiritual tether, and this tether is quite short, and very hard to break). Should the treasure hunter release the summons, the wisp may go back to haunting its tree. In addition, should the wisp ever resolve its anger and resentment at having been felled as a tree, the wisp shall no longer be bound to the material plane, or the treasure hunter.

I'm not sure yet about who this particular wisp is, but I have a feeling its interests will have to do with resolving its resentment so that it may free itself, and in the more immediate future, with escaping its summons (perhaps by tricking the treasure hunter into releasing it).

Croaker, is it possible that as part of the ritual to summon this wisp, you created it in the first place by felling its tree? This could create some useful tensions between our characters. Just an idea I had. You could have just summoned one of the resident wisps as well, though I doubt they're very common. This is all presupposing that we as a group agree on my definition of wisps.

I will work on my character sheet shortly.

AoM
14th of August, 2010, 16:38
Croaker could you or Tag describe what the treasure is that you are seeking?

AoM
14th of August, 2010, 16:55
NPCs for Chapter 2 are up in the Rogues Gallery, I will copy their names into this post. More NPCs may be made up as we go along, as well as more particular strengths. Also, the few that I have created have yet to be defined.

****

Naszir Ur-Nagha, Father of the Possessed, Piyar Caravan Leader

Mehka Eil, the Brute (a ghoul)

Zahir Rahm, King of Bones, (a ghoul)

Manishtusu, Keeper of the Alim Drati and Preserver of the Most Holy (a guant)

Taham Ur-Drodi, Herald of the Piyar Chieftain of the Red Hills

Omid, Piyar Guard

Hani'ata, a crone traveling with the caravan

Kimya, a slave to the crone.

*****

I am defining Ghouls as humans who feed on the dead, worshipers of an ancient god, and who through their unusual practice have become warped creatures of undeath - trapped between the realm of the living and the dead, their bodies outliving their souls, such that any ghoul that has lived beyond its normal human longevity is left as a mad and hungry creature driven mostly by primitive instincts.

I am defining Guants as the spirits of the truly dead who have, through warped magics, been instilled back into their corpses. They are intelligent, and they view the ghouls as their servants - a lesser caste that should serve their needs. Some of them are quite powerful, especially their leader, who guards a most important treasure.

Wisps are going to be defined mainly upon what Cheese decides that they are, since he chose to be one. I will work out exactly what a wisp's general motivations are once I know more what Cheese decides.

The Caravan is slow moving because it is composed of a great many migrating people, the Piyar, who are relocating to the South to avoid the wrath of a great war in their homelands. They ride upon the Lamaxa, giant crawling insects, similar in form to a caterpillar, only capable of growing to gargantuan sizes. The Lamaxa are quite intelligent beasts, similar to the mental capacity of a dolphin. They emit a chittering that the Piyar believe is a basic form of communication. Some so-called Lamaxa Whisperers amongst the Piyar are widely sought after for their ability to mimic these sounds and train the beasts to carry large burdens for the nomadic Piyar people.

Darius
15th of August, 2010, 02:30
Why guant instead of gaunt?

Bashabael is a spirt of death and hunger, who in times past was worshipped as a minor god himself. He has managed to possess the son of Naszir Ur-Nagha when the child was playing with the relic that Bashabael had been bound in centuries ago. The child's will was weak enough that even in a reduced state Bashabael was able to displace the child's will, replacing it with his own.

Bashabael's particular strength is Consume.

Consume
This is the ability to force the possessed to devour all in its path, even those things that that normally would not be affected in the material world. The possessed person's mouth opens wider that seemingly possible, turning into a great fanged maw.


It requires that you be able to attack another.
It must be used With Violence. For NPCs it's good for Action.
Significance 1. It's Far-Reaching in that it can affect both corporeal and spiritual matter.
It's die is a d8.

AoM
15th of August, 2010, 02:40
yeah, gaunts. I'll fix that. Must've mispelled it somewhere along the line and didn't think to fix it.

And Bashabael sounds good.

Explosive Cheese
15th of August, 2010, 02:52
Darius, I believe that the significance of Consume should be Far-Reaching, rather than Broad. Broad means access to another dice form; Far-Reaching means access to more in-game areas.

Edit: Also, a question on significance - since multiple characters can sometimes take the same particular strength (for instance, multiple spirits taking Spirit or Consume), is the Significance of a Particular Strength tied to a character or the strength itself? That is, if Darius wants to take Consume as Broad/Far-reaching for Bashabael, and then a later spirit wants to take Consume, will they be able to pick a different Significance?

Croaker
15th of August, 2010, 04:43
Cheese: Far-reaching means that it can affect more than it logically should. For instance, Darius can consume spirit-flesh. That's far-reaching.

Also, Significance can be tied to the Strength or the character, whatever makes logical sense. If it's a magical artifact that's Unique, Broad, and Potent, if someone takes the artifact through play somehow (the other character loses it and during the next chapter another player opts to take it), then they probably get the significance. If a form of magic is actually just a spirit that possesses you and allows you to use some of it's power, then significance increases could logically be tied to either the spirit increasing in power or the character learning to control the power of the spirit more effectively.

AoM: I'm not sure about the Sympathy increase. Maybe younger people are better at it. Maybe Akihiqar had an accident that stripped him of his power to Summon and his Sympathy by the time Chapter 1 was happening. Either way, I'm not sure I get to increase its Significance because Akihiqar wasn't a PC character in the last chapter, but I sent Vx an email asking him about it, so we'll see.

As for the treasure, it's an orb that lets the user control spirits. Obviously a Big Fucking Deal considering our cosmology. Maybe not God-spirits... but maybe God-spirits indeed!

AoM
15th of August, 2010, 09:36
I don't think that the rules allow for it because Akihiqar was not a PC last chapter (which didn't finish anyway, so we really shouldn't rely on it for affecting this chapter)

AND I want all PCs at the same level, so keep it at significance 1.

AoM
15th of August, 2010, 09:39
Darius: Cheese is right, if you want to have consume affect things that are not normally part of the material world, then you will need to take Far Reaching as the form - since that is specifically what that form does. (If I let things stand as is, I would be giving you that form for free, and I want significance 1.)

AoM
15th of August, 2010, 09:49
Okay Croaker and Tag, go ahead and get your characters and stats up, so I can approve them and we can enter into the Best Interest Round Robin.

Croaker
15th of August, 2010, 17:24
Did I not get my stats up??

Also, we shouldn't let the fact that the previous chapter ended abruptly affect anything: in the tabletop face-to-face game, chapters are only ever one session long. If you run out of time, the chapter is over.

TagalongDT
15th of August, 2010, 17:45
Sorry, been out of it for awhile (if you guys couldn't tell). I figured the honest map is a reluctant prophet. She has visions/dreams and must play her part in completing them. I figure she was hired by Croaker's character, given she's had visions of the treasure he seeks.

And yes, we should probably try to at least wrap up the previous chapter what like...a cliff hanger or something.

AoM
15th of August, 2010, 19:51
I am curious as to how we might be able to get back to the chapter 1 characters.

But, I'm going to plow through this so that we can get back to playing - which is the important bit.

Okay, so I think we'll start with the best interest round robin. Anyone can come in and claim a best interest, after everyone has claimed a best interest, I will have the NPCs give theirs.

TagalongDT
16th of August, 2010, 08:41
Assuming this takes place in the past (which, given the oracle title I think is a safe assumption) then we do have two characters that were known to be running around outside of Waystone before chapter 1 occurred (Sawrina and Layhiri). Though given they didn't know each other we can only have one or the other (or we can ret con, that's also an option, Layhiri or Sawrini could have change enough they didn't recognize each other, Sawrini could have jsut ignored Layhiri, or Layhiri could have her own reasons for pretending to not know the Shelder, etc.).

Or, we could have the events that we're playing through in chapter 2 someone directly cause the events in chapter 1 (off the top of my head, this cast of characters could be the ones that woke up the demiurge.)

Just idle thinking mind, something to bear in mind as we write.

AoM
16th of August, 2010, 09:06
BEST INTEREST ROUND ROBIN:

Naszir Ur-Nagha, Father of the Possessed, Piyar Caravan Leader

--I must exorcise and destroy the spirit possessing my son.

Mehka Eil, the Brute (a ghoul)

--Eat the heart of the interloper who has summoned me.

--Become Bashabael's vessel, merging his spirit with my own ensorcelled soul, that we might again attain godhood and break the shackles of our oppressors.

Zahir Rahm, King of Bones, (a ghoul)

--Find the woman who is sharing my visions and make her into a ghoul.

--Destroy the sacred orb, so that the prophecy can be fulfilled.

Manishtusu, Keeper of the Alim Drati and Preserver of the Most Holy (a gaunt)

-- Protect the sacred orb of the Alim Drati, and kill all who would defile the ruins of the temple.

Taham Ur-Drodi, Herald of the Piyar Chieftain of the Red Hills

-- Construct a safe and warded road through these haunted woods to the hill lands on the other side.

Omid, Piyar Guard

-- Bind the spirit Bashabael within a new relic, as my true masters wish.

Hani'ata, a crone traveling with the caravan

-- Drain the alluring essence of a powerful wisp, so that I may become young again.

Kimya, slave to Hani'ata

-- Return to her true master so that the prophecy can be averted.

-- Convince my one-time lover Sslissol to lure Zasalumi to her death. In return I shall give the Wisp what it seeks.

AoM
16th of August, 2010, 09:10
re Tag: This story may take place before any of the chapter 1 characters were born, or it may have happened a week before the siege, only in a different part of the world. We don't know yet.

But yes, I have considered that there can and should be a connection somehow. But I am happy to wait and discover it through play.

TagalongDT
16th of August, 2010, 09:20
Oh I know. I'm just throwing ideas into the pot to get the ball rolling.

Darius
16th of August, 2010, 23:48
Best interest 1:

Consume a powerful sorceror so that I may add his power to my own.

Croaker
17th of August, 2010, 03:16
Best interest 1:

Obtain the sacred orb and keep it safe from harm.

AoM
17th of August, 2010, 19:28
Argh, I think I did this slightly wrong. I was supposed to start with just one NPC's interests and then go back and forth with the PCs. Oh well, we'll just plow forward. Cheese and Tag, if you can get your Best Interests stated within the next 12-14 hours, then I'll respond to them, otherwise I'll just have a few more best interests be shown to reflect Darius and Croaker's first best interests.

TagalongDT
18th of August, 2010, 10:38
Best interest 1: Lead this group to the end of the prophecy.

Also, does that mean you're going to post just 3 or 4 best interests at once?

AoM
18th of August, 2010, 11:22
I will do two right now. It's already gotten a bit haphazard. Remember, I joined the first chapter a bit late, after the round robin had pretty much been settled, so I didn't actually see how the process was done.

Also, Tag, what is the "group" that you refer to in your best interest.

---------------------
Okay my updates were this:

Kimya, slave of the crone.

It's in her best interest to return to her true master so that the prophecy can be averted.

Zahir Rahm, King of Bones, a ghoul.

It's in his best interest to destroy the orb, so that the prophecy can be fulfilled.

--------------------

Since Darius' best interest is turned more towards a player rather than an NPC (though maybe not, who knows), I'm not responding with an interfering best interest at this point.

TagalongDT
18th of August, 2010, 16:45
The group is either the caravan that everyone is traveling in, or a completely different group of people opposing the party. Whatever is more fun.

AoM
18th of August, 2010, 17:13
Ah, I wasn't sure that everyone was traveling with the caravan. The voracious Spirit is, but only because he is inhabiting a Piyar boy. The Summoner and Visionary might well be, but are they of these people? or are they simply tagging along? Or were they already here when the caravan came through? And the Wisp? Isn't it tied to the woods where the ruins are?

Explosive Cheese
19th of August, 2010, 10:40
Sorry I couldn't get to this earlier, I was away on a camping trip. I left a note in my sig, but I didn't mention the fact in every game I'm in...

Best Interest 1: Escape the summons I am under.

I think Sslissol is tied to both the woods where the ruins are, and currently also to the Summoner (else my best interest makes no sense). This would seem to imply that the Kadashman-Enlil and Zasalumi at least are also in the woods. If this goes against your guys' needs, I'll start the game with Sslissol not bound to the summoner, and change my best interest.

A question: Does Sslissol have any knowledge that someone is looking to consume it?

AoM
19th of August, 2010, 17:06
Cheese, there's no reason for Sslissol to know of the crone's desire, but if you deem that there is a reason for it to know of her, then I'll run with it.

Croaker
20th of August, 2010, 06:50
Does it make sense for me to have bound and summoned a wisp? You're not really undead, so what were you doing in the ruins at the time?

I have no problem with it, it just seems like kind of a stretch.

Explosive Cheese
20th of August, 2010, 07:41
I'm a very old wisp from the woods that encompasses the ruins. I may have important information about the surrounding area and/or the ruins itself, so you summoned and bound me to help you find the orb? Those were my thoughts, I guess. Does that make some kind of sense?

AoM
20th of August, 2010, 12:31
The oracle only states that there is a convocation of ghouls, gaunts, and wisps. It doesn't say that the reason they all gather is because of one source.

Furthermore, it is wrong to assume that just because Croaker's PC has summoned some of them that he exerts control over any or all of them. (Perhaps as he is an experienced summoner he will know of some way to protect himself, but summoning should be an art of bargaining as well.)

AoM
20th of August, 2010, 12:34
However, if Cheese really wants his Wisp to be bound to the summoner and working for an escape, there's no reason not to have that be the case. Just confirm what you want Cheese, and we'll continue.

Explosive Cheese
20th of August, 2010, 12:59
I like the idea of Sslissol being bound, as long as Croaker is cool with it.

Croaker
21st of August, 2010, 13:28
I figured there would be some bargaining; I used bound and summoned somewhat idiomatically. It's not too much of a stretch to assume binding and summoning are aspects of the same art, so that's what I did.

Since Cheese has no problem being bound, I vote to include binding as part of the summoning paradigm. I wouldn't have summoned more than I could bind. The definition of bound could be flexible, though--maybe it just means they won't be capable of harming me or leaving my circle of influence. They can bargain for release by performing my requests. Any failure on their part breaks the bargain and harms them in some way.

Explosive Cheese
21st of August, 2010, 17:20
Works for me. :)

AoM
1st of September, 2010, 06:26
So, here are the new Best Interests! I've decided to add a bit more flavor to our spirit PCs through NPC intrigue. Please give me your second best interests. I will be working on getting NPC particular strengths covered in the next couple days. Then a first post after that (there'll be a new thread for the official Chapter 2. Hope it doesn't get too confusing with this thread also being named chapter 2, even though it should have been something like Unquiet Past Oracle.)


Mehka Eil, the Brute (a ghoul)

--Become Bashabael's vessel, merging his spirit with my own ensorcelled soul, that we might again attain godhood and break the shackles of our oppressors.

Omid, Piyar Guard

-- Bind the spirit Bashabael within a new relic, as my true masters wish.

Kimya, slave to Hani'ata

-- Convince my one-time lover Sslissol to lure Zasalumi to her death. In return I shall give the Wisp what it seeks.

Explosive Cheese
1st of September, 2010, 07:14
Well then... That's an interesting angle for Sslissol... Is Kimya a Spirit of some kind as well?

A question about the lore of our world, as it impacts what my second best interest will be: Does obtaining enough belief allow a wisp to either attain godhood or pass over (perhaps existing as a Wisp is a tormenting experience)?

If it is possible to attain godhood/pass over, that will be my second best interest. Otherwise, it will be to rekindle my relationship with Kimya.

Btw, as moderators, I think we can change the title of this thread. Should I do that?

AoM
1st of September, 2010, 07:24
I reserve the right to keep Kimya's true identity a secret for now. Suffice it to say, she's much more than a mere slave to some old crone, but currently she appears to be human for all intents and purposes.

As far as our lore. Currently we've determined that Spirits can obtain godhood with enough direct belief and worship, and we've also determined that Wisps are a type of spirit. So technically, it should be possible for Sslissol to obtain godhood. But whether it is within your means is another matter. If such was Sslissol's goal, it would seem that Kimya is a key to achieving that.

Explosive Cheese
1st of September, 2010, 07:38
Okay, then Best Interest #2 is to attain godhood. Yes, I know it's way out there, Sslissol just being an ancient wisp from a Ruins in a forest, but I think that many spirits have it as unconscious goal. Sslissol just makes it a conscious and determined effort. It probably won't happen, but I'll sure try.

Edit: This thread's title is now Oracle 2: Unquiet Past, in order to avoid the confusion AoM was talking about. If this bugs you, you can change it back.

AoM
1st of September, 2010, 08:10
Sounds good Cheese, and thanks for the thread rename. How did you manage that? I couldn't find the tab that let me change it.

Explosive Cheese
1st of September, 2010, 08:17
In thread tools, in the top right corner of the thread. Click it, and you get all kinds of options, including thread manipulation if you're a moderator.

Darius
2nd of September, 2010, 06:36
Bashabael's best interest #2:

Break the mind and spirit of the caravan leader whose shild I possess, making him worship me.

Croaker
3rd of September, 2010, 05:18
Best interest 2:

Ensorcell Bashabael under the power of the Orb, to test its power in binding God-spirits.

TagalongDT
12th of September, 2010, 16:36
Best interest #2: Destroy the orb, or at least hide it away forever.

Darius
14th of September, 2010, 00:24
Is there a reason why Bashabael's strength isn't listed under Strengths? Should I just edit it in myself?

AoM
14th of September, 2010, 04:08
Not all the strengths are listed there. In fact, I'm not certain that we've ironed out all of them quite yet, but I'll list it for you.

AoM
14th of September, 2010, 04:33
Okay, Consume, Warding, and Devil-Bone Casting have been added to the Particular Strengths list.

Summoning, Visions, and Lure will be added later. If you guys could add your Particular Strength definitions to your character sheets, I'll just copy and paste them on to my list.

The first post is up, feel free to play on it. Bashabael has just been released, and Kadashman-Enlil has just summoned and bound a host of ghouls, gaunts and wisps, including Sslissol. Zasalumi is standing by the summoner, as are two Piyar named Imar and Mahid.

Sslissol had just thought he'd seen a familiar face, whom we know OOC-wise is Kimya, his former lover. She may or may not be physically present.

Ulgath is for now completely under Bashabael's control. In time, he may develop free will and will then be able to take command of the Possessed ability, but until that time, Bashabael is free to treat the boy's body as his own. (Note Darius that you do not have access to the Possessed particular strength, that is only available to Ulgath when and if he regains control of his body.

Kadashman-Enlil knows that he is getting close to the orb's resting place. The final marker is entombed beneath the stones of a buried temple whose entrance is just ahead of them. (The gem that Ulgath touched was the handle to the door, guaranteeing that the first to desecrate this tomb would have unleashed a spirit unto themselves.) Kadashman-Enlil will be wary of the trap, but Zasalumi, using her Visions, should be able to see that the trap has already been sprung - and she may use that knowledge accordingly.

Once the final marker has been found, Kadashman-Enlil will know the location of the Grand Zigguraut, the fabled resting place of the Sacred Orb of the Alim Drati - and he will know of the ways to avoid the many traps and perils that would beset him along the journey.