The Campaign Builders' Guild

Campaign Creation => Homebrews => Topic started by: SA on March 11, 2014, 02:14:46 AM



Title: A thing
Post by: SA on March 11, 2014, 02:14:46 AM

Out of Character

I ran a rather freeform session a few days ago, and this is the document I cooked up in the few hours before it started (I would have made it longer, but  ran out of time). The session went well.

I'm not crazy. These things happened and these places are real. I swear I didn't make it up. Tell everybody. I can't be the only one who knows.
-Jake

Chassery
What they call the king's language. I can't really spell it properly in English or describe it because it's got all these sounds we don't use. Sometimes it sounded maybe Chinise and sometimes African. Popping, clicking and whistling. We never really learned to pronounce it so people always knew we were very very foreign. That got us in a lot of trouble. But sometimes it saved our lives! Here are a few words:

kwan - Fear. People use it a lot, and stick it in front of other words like we use 'phobia', but it doesn't necessarily mean irrational fear. So kwanbuckoo is a fear of wolves, which makes sense, and kwanmwotissa is a fear of children, which sounded kind of crazy until we heard about the West.

riyo - Water. There are people made entirely of water, called the Riyoyacka. Yacka doesn't mean anything, that I know of. They look pretty much human (and naked too) when just standing around but they throw themselves forward like they've been blasted from a hose instead of walking and they carry objects by wrapping around them even though they have hands. They don't speak. Apparently they don't eat either, and they drown people for fun, and they have a god who wants to drown the whole world. But they seemed pretty harmless to us. Long ago the Bronze Minister imprisoned thousands of them them in the far north where it's so cold they turned to ice. He didn't even need prisons.

teresa - Dollar. It sounds a lot like your name, which Kat always thought was funny but really just reminded me how far away home was. On their coins is a picture of the dead queen. She looks nothing like you.

brurt - Sword. In Cowalkut, people are obsessed with swords. Even very little kids have them, but they're not sharp. There are three types: ijedbrurt for fighting humans, zolombrurt for fighting the dead, and brurt-vol for fighting spirits. We saw men who wouldn't draw a ghost-sword to fight off bandits even though it was the only sword they had, and who got killed because of it.

doorways
I won't tell you how we got there the first time. Even though I could warn you a million times DON'T OPEN THE DOOR and explain all the frightening things we saw and all the sadness and danger maybe you'll do it anyway. We did. Still, if you get there somehow (I don't know how or why but you might) you'll need to know how to get back ou [MISSING] izards will tell you they can help you. THEY CAN'T. Their magic is all about deception and getting power over other people so they want you to put your trust in them and then they've GOT you.

storms
They're alive, and they talk. Their voices are really low and bassy, and no-one but us ever heard them, which is part of the reason people thought we were magical. It's kind of drawn out and mellow and reasuring until you catch what they're saying. Every storm, even the least impressive one, is trying to kill people. Remember Phillip back in school who could never not say what was going through his head? It's like that, only imagine he had a machine gun in his backpack.

wizards
I mentioned wizards before. They're really powerful and dangerous and you should never trust them.

gardens
A lot of people, even really poor ones, have carefully tended gardens. Their whole house could look totally ramshackle but their backyards would win awards. This is where normal people make magic. Flowers grow so huge you can make clothes from them, and you could rest in their shade. Herbs cure diseases and seeds planted in the right spot can grow into weird animals (I sketched a few of them for you). There are trees that can't be killed if the person who planted them is alive, so young men plant them and if they wither and die during a war their families know they're dead. Gardens are such serious business that you wouldn't burn your worst enemy's garden even if you wanted to shoot him in the street.

Lady Rotten
We never figured out why she was after us. She's the dead queen's 'sister' but she supposedly wasn't 'born' until the queen died. I don't get it either. Lady Rotten tried to take the queen's place place but the throne rejected her so she sits beside it instead. She's bloated, rigid and stinks just like her name says. She's not evil, though. Just very very bitter.

The dead queen
We only met the REAL queen once, when she lent us her ship to cross the ember sea. She was drop dead gorgeous and taller than anyone I ever saw, but she looked at us like we didn't exist. For a while she had me convinced that I didn't.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: TheMeanestGuest on March 13, 2014, 05:49:19 PM
As usual, SA, the thing you have written is evocative and generally great. I just wish there were more of them.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: SA on March 13, 2014, 08:41:58 PM
Thanks. These days my output is really compressed. I've abandoned my old style of setting creation à la Dystopia or Endless in favour of short projects with a specific adventure and thematic focus in mind, which allows me to better tailor sessions to player preference. Single post settings are where it's at.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: beejazz on March 18, 2014, 09:55:26 PM
Yeah, time constraints have this major focusing effect on my work too. That said, I'm curious how this was applied in game. You've got some intriguing, dream-like stuff here.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: SA on March 19, 2014, 12:30:44 AM
I've been roleplaying with the same group since I was fourteen. Each of us knows what the others want out of a session and we're all intensely imaginative. It's a waste of time for me to flesh out a setting we'll only play in once, twice or three times, so I just describe a few elements that make the setting distinct. Something evocative. Enough for my friends to get a sense of what I'm about. The more I describe, the more the world is circumscribed (this is why my writing is often ambiguous). Instead: "This is some cool stuff I thought up and I want it in here. What do you want in here?" Every setting is a group effort.

In this instance the PCs were a handful of teens fresh out of highschool. Teresa's sister Jacquelin (everyone calls her Jake; they're both Tomboys) had disappeared for a year with a couple of friends and when she returned she had all these crazy stories about another, more dangerous world. When she disappeared again, Teresa and her friends found their own way into the Otherworld in order to "rescue" her. Hilarity ensued.

When I wrote the "session plan" I had no idea Jake and Teresa were sisters. In fact, I had no more of an image of this "setting" than what's written in that first post. My friends had suggested "Thomas Covenant plus Chronicles of Narnia", so I ran with that, filtered through the narrative voice of Gene Wolfe's Wizard Knight. They decided who the Bronze Minister was, which helped me figure out why the Riyoyacka were imprisoned. They gave me details on the cultures of Cowalkut. They told me how the dead queen died, and why there are so many orphans in the West, and why Lady Rotten is so spiteful. Throughout the session they fed me suggestions, reminders, questions. They made the setting real by investing in its creation.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on March 19, 2014, 11:51:49 AM
That sounds really fascinating.  It's utterly foreign to me and my brain starts spitting out questions - "But!  But!  But!  Immersion!  Control!  Campaign Longevity!  Verisimilitude!" - but I suspect this just is the vertiginous queasiness that results when being confronted by something so different from the way things are "usually done."


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: sparkletwist on March 19, 2014, 01:36:47 PM

Steerpike

Immersion!  Control!  Campaign Longevity!  Verisimilitude!
All of those things are good, but I honestly don't think any of them are really being hurt by getting players invested in a setting by allowing them to join in its creation. :grin:

Too much "campaign longevity" just means that you're setting yourself for the game to end when everyone gets bored instead of on a high note when the current story reaches its conclusion, anyway.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on March 19, 2014, 01:53:16 PM
I think it depends - long campaigns have their own rewards (particularly playing the same character for a long period) - but there's much to be said for the "short story" format.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on March 19, 2014, 02:17:48 PM
I'll second that. My group's favorite games took place within 6+ year campaigns. We still talk about the climax and the campaign as a whole with great fondness. Other players may prefer short adventures and one-shot games, but my crew preferred the immersion, complexity, and plot/character development of the longer campaigns. The key, I think, is finding the right recipes for the right palettes.  

EDIT: Regardless of style and preference, I do think that creativity and player engagement are essential ingredients.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: beejazz on March 19, 2014, 09:05:04 PM

SA

I've been roleplaying with the same group since I was fourteen. Each of us knows what the others want out of a session and we're all intensely imaginative. It's a waste of time for me to flesh out a setting we'll only play in once, twice or three times, so I just describe a few elements that make the setting distinct. Something evocative. Enough for my friends to get a sense of what I'm about. The more I describe, the more the world is circumscribed (this is why my writing is often ambiguous). Instead: "This is some cool stuff I thought up and I want it in here. What do you want in here?" Every setting is a group effort.

In this instance the PCs were a handful of teens fresh out of highschool. Teresa's sister Jacquelin (everyone calls her Jake; they're both Tomboys) had disappeared for a year with a couple of friends and when she returned she had all these crazy stories about another, more dangerous world. When she disappeared again, Teresa and her friends found their own way into the Otherworld in order to "rescue" her. Hilarity ensued.

When I wrote the "session plan" I had no idea Jake and Teresa were sisters. In fact, I had no more of an image of this "setting" than what's written in that first post. My friends had suggested "Thomas Covenant plus Chronicles of Narnia", so I ran with that, filtered through the narrative voice of Gene Wolfe's Wizard Knight. They decided who the Bronze Minister was, which helped me figure out why the Riyoyacka were imprisoned. They gave me details on the cultures of Cowalkut. They told me how the dead queen died, and why there are so many orphans in the West, and why Lady Rotten is so spiteful. Throughout the session they fed me suggestions, reminders, questions. They made the setting real by investing in its creation.

Sounds like an interesting way to handle the sort of fun, surreal, open ended material you deal with. I like the short format, but I tend to run games in the mystery genre, and usually with whoever shows up rather than a consistent group. So there are a few things preventing me from even trying anything this loose, normally. Still, good to hear it worked out well.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: SA on March 19, 2014, 09:37:35 PM
I gave up on Dystopia when it finally occurred to me that my players wouldn't - and justifiably shouldn't - give a shit about all the detail I was cramming inside it. We still played in it, and expanded the lore through play, but I never wrote anything for it, because my only audience would be TheCBG site members who (realistically) wouldn't have any use for it. So a few questions always nag me when I read other people's settings:

  • How much of your written material do you intend that your players read?
  • How much do they actually end up reading?
  • Whom are you actually writing all this for?

These aren't criticisms in the slightest. Simply curiosity. When I asked them of myself my conclusion was that I wrote too much.

ALSO:

Steerpike

"But!  But!  But!  Immersion!  Control!  Campaign Longevity!  Verisimilitude!"
If I learned only one thing from Apocalypse World (probably the case) it was to "look at your NPCs through crosshairs". Players fucking shit up is what makes everything work, so I encourage them to "kill my darlings" whenever they can. Their egos are more important than mine.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: beejazz on March 19, 2014, 09:49:52 PM
Mystery stuff is weird in that respect. I flesh out NPC motives and even if the players never discover the motives, those motives are still running in the background determining NPC actions that the party does interact with. So it's incredibly useful even if the thing itself never gets seen. Piled on top of that are a bunch of multi-use and reusable items like maps. All in all I think NPC statblocks take a lot more of my time than the rest of it.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: sparkletwist on March 19, 2014, 10:06:46 PM

SA

Players fucking shit up is what makes everything work
This is definitely how Asura works. :grin:

My own personal answers are:
- As much as they want!
- Luckily for me, most people I've played with have actually read it pretty voraciously, and asked for more, even!
- When people ask for more, I try to write more.  I also often write about topics that pop into my head that I feel like could be developed better.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on March 20, 2014, 09:12:40 AM
Luckily it seems like my stuff gets used by others beside me, including some GMs, which is awesome - there've been at least 4 Cadaverous Earth campaigns not run by me, I think.  But, in general, I agree that if you're not deriving pleasure from world-building intrinsically (i.e. writing it for yourself - the prime motive for all good writing) then it can seem rather pointless, unless you're world-building as part of another project, like a novel or comic.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Lmns Crn on March 21, 2014, 08:10:29 PM

SA

I gave up on Dystopia when it finally occurred to me that my players wouldn't - and justifiably shouldn't - give a shit about all the detail I was cramming inside it. We still played in it, and expanded the lore through play, but I never wrote anything for it, because my only audience would be TheCBG site members who (realistically) wouldn't have any use for it. So a few questions always nag me when I read other people's settings:

  • How much of your written material do you intend that your players read?
  • How much do they actually end up reading?
  • Whom are you actually writing all this for?

These aren't criticisms in the slightest. Simply curiosity. When I asked them of myself my conclusion was that I wrote too much.
I identify with this so much.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: LordVreeg on March 23, 2014, 12:23:06 PM

Steerpike

Luckily it seems like my stuff gets used by others beside me, including some GMs, which is awesome - there've been at least 4 Cadaverous Earth campaigns not run by me, I think.  But, in general, I agree that if you're not deriving pleasure from world-building intrinsically (i.e. writing it for yourself - the prime motive for all good writing) then it can seem rather pointless, unless you're world-building as part of another project, like a novel or comic.
Similar.

Celtricia started when I and most of my PCs were in High School, so three of the players ran Celtrician Campaigns when they went away to college.  And I think my model for worldbuilding was more Tolkienesque, with the history and dynamics fleshed out in public information and even more in private notes.  So there are reams of notes still scribbled away and in wikipages called DMonly, to SA's point of how much is meant to be read by PCs.  However, as Steerpike mentions, I get satisfaction out of creating the thing, of fleshing it out, in and of itself. It multiplies later, especially when it starts to build momentum from the game (when I have to extrapolate from it and add onto it) and when the details move into the game.  Because after every game I have to add in the newly-fleshed out details so as to maintain as much integrity as possible.

Now, every group and every player is different.  But I tend to end up with readers and researchers for players.  So there seems to be a strong feedback loop in our games.  For instance, the Steel Isle (http://celtricia.pbworks.com/w/page/14956335/Steel%20Isle%20Town) game started on an island with a good amount of big-picture stuff known and some detail, but we added detail after every session, until we had the areas around the island and the neighborhoods and areas around Steel Isle Town and the ruins and the detailed histories all backstoried.

I also end up with less glossed over time than a lot of GMs.  The economic and political and social details come up and are played through in detail.  My Igbarians have been playing in town for the last 13 sessions, almost a full year of real time.  And much of this has been dealing with the details mentioned above.  And because my players do keep up with the info, so an area like Igbar (http://celtricia.pbworks.com/w/page/14955656/Igbar%2C%20Capital%20of%20Trabler) that has been played for 30+ years of real time has been added to continuously, to the point that it is not only more fleshed out but details have changed and time has moved on.

And again, I am just ruminating and describing how this has worked for me.  Every game and GM and dynamic is different.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: SA on May 07, 2014, 04:19:04 AM
What humans fear most in monsters is not their unnatural bodies but their alien minds. These two peoples are fundamentally unalike and cannot help but harm each other, so that one or the other is always imperiled with extinction. Blind to this pattern and its cause, the humans of this world have almost exterminated monsterkind, driving the last of them under ground and into the cold wastelands and under the sea. Those monsters languish in darkness and solitude, and have dwindled, and their minds have fermented.

Copokiasti
When Moon-Emperor was young, the lords of the great plain scoffed at his commands and flouted his interdictions. He demanded from his goddess that she provide an instrument with which he might compel their obedience, and she came before him and they coupled and she begat a child. That child was not human but it was not a god. It was the colour of stirred coals and likewise shapeless, and its touch set flesh alight and melted stone. Copokiasti hunted the obstinate lords of the plains. It dragged them from their horses and roasted them alive. Soon no-one defied the will of young Moon-Emperor. When Copokiasti had been exhausted as a weapon, Moon-Emperor, who had no other use for such a creature and would never call it "son", imprisoned it within the Ancient Brazier to gutter and diminish over long eons. The Empire of Night does not exist any more. The age of horse and bow is long extinguished and Moon-Emperor is no more than a ghost. But Copokiasti still burns.

Foutu-Beet-Bahba
The Last Kingdom drove her from her native forest with huge silver cannons. Their weapons could not kill her, but they tore her scales away in jagged green cascades and great bloody showers that stained their kingdom black. They drove her all the way to the ocean, and into it, and saltwater filled her wounds and agonised her such that she flung herself out again, and was bombarded and repelled again, and so on until she had been made ragged and hollow and insane. Before her trauma she had wings like the sails of whole armadas, and the stamping feet of a thousand horses, and towering tangled horns like a venerable meranti. Now her body is all but vanished and her horns are extended across the ocean floor like grasping coral. I cannot say whether fear or patience or some other force restrains her, but she is not dead.

...and others

Out of Character

Don't actually expect others. Be realistic


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on May 07, 2014, 09:12:47 AM

SA

Be realistic

What is this "realism" you speak of?

Foutu-Beet-Bahba is intriguing, like a weird Dunsanian Godzilla.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: SA on October 29, 2014, 02:12:14 AM
They used to be our gods
They commissioned the destruction of nations and the extinction of entire races. A few errant men did not follow such commands (they molder even now in the oubliettes of your rejuvenated cities), but I was not among them. Do not judge us. Without our oaths we were nothing. Should those majesties revisit the world I will execute these selfsame instructions.

I know that you sing the names of great deities in order to invoke their power, but you should not speak these names aloud. Such creatures are jealous of their titles and may seek to do you harm.

Pathame
She exhorted our species to shed the ungainly instruments which nature has endowed us. The cities that loved her best were not filled with men and women, but with chimeras of disparate flesh and a thousand animal types intermingled. Her servants were exultant xenophiles whose extremity I will not pretend to understand. Though we were not so in love with our own natures as you are, I do not know that we could have taken our transformations far enough to satisfy her.

Lubjigett Sartent
Your propagandists have doctored the holos that depict him so that he appears conniving, malicious and insane. Yes, he was all of these things, but we did not know this at the war's commencement. He was more beautiful than any woman I have known and may in fact have been partway through a transition between the sexes, as others of his kind have transformed before. His siblings loved and feared him equally and his subjects adored him utterly. Even had we known how much he would diminish by war's end, we might have followed him regardless. How else could we have come so close to glory?

Maiden
An ironic euphemism. I do not know her true name. This carnivorous deity had no place in our monastery and the boys who crept into cankerous Okrum to partake of her mysteries would not explain them to us.

Quhaiha
The pearl city Zagint was among the last to fall. Many of the war's most horrible stories take place here, because we were not permitted to bombard it and had to advance on foot. For five days my company besieged a temple that was already half destroyed and none of us knew - or cared - which deity inhabited it. At last we overcame its defenses and discovered that its goddess was one of ours. A priest had mercifully cut her throat so that we could not rape her, but some vengeful comrade had then impaled her lengthwise on his spear. None of us knew why that temple had defected, or if other temples had followed suit, because we lost the war soon after.


Out of Character

This occupies the same universe as "and you, ARRUNTULLA! (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,82911.0.html)"


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on October 29, 2014, 08:34:33 AM
I love your writing. It's like a vivid, surreal dream: evocative, haunting, alluring, yet unfathomable and ephemeral. Hard to grasp as a player or would-be-GM, but definitely beautiful and inspiring to read. I hope for more, and am especially glad that this is part of the Arruntulla universe (but not the same world, I presume?). 


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: SA on October 29, 2014, 10:08:55 AM
Thank you. This is not the same world, but another planet that the ancient worldship verdigris has seeded with humanity. The short-lived green world stories (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,81799) describes yet another such planet.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on October 29, 2014, 12:28:33 PM
Cool.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on July 26, 2015, 01:52:02 PM

Out of Character

I'm preparing this document as a setting kernel for me and my gaming group to develop into a fully fledged universe. We won't be getting together for a month, and I'll flesh it out considerably before they get their hands on it, so in the meantime any thoughts and commentary are welcome.

The setting will occupy the same multiverse as "and you, ARRUNTULLA! (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,82911.0.html)"


THE CONVOCATION AT DEMONHEAD


...where the reluctant alumni of numerous disreputable traditions commingle: nurturing conspiracy, trading arcana, and reaffirming their masters' old alliances.


THOSE PRESENT

sweet eater - lips sticky with human issue, belly distended with unmatured monsters. she burbles courteously in the corner and goes unregarded

worm's mate la-ima - when the contests and transactions are complete, she will fossick among the day's detritus for fresh portents

pekku the obtuse - his name is as ironic as his magics are precise

provost zumabtiter and his lackeys - conceit and stupidity have always compelled the leaders of this school to appear as themselves, unrepresented and undisguised

the original grimgehemmen? - we may assume that she has sent a simulacrum in her stead

kotis bounder - a restless and incorrigible mummer. do not trespass the margins of his phantasms

oam's unremarkable apprentice - jotting hurried minutes in her squirming hagskin journal. already she bears the many scars of her master's inhuman tutelage

tulpa lanj - the flickering gestalt of destitute chapterhouse weirheig. by what treachery have they contrived entrance to our august convocation?

igrit's carnifex: the illimitable suplum yih - that stentorious raconteur, that faultless charmer. he is undoubtedly scheming murder even now

the lovers owl and kite - do not inquire after these erotomaniacs

...and others


A MARVELLOUS DESIGN
pages from
THE INFERIOR BOOK OF IMAGES


each nation develops its own interpretation of the cosmic images, and its diverse schools supply further specialisation and refinement, but the underlying forms are (theoretically) constant across all realities


ORIGINAL ICONS

when these six comprised the entirety of our undesrtanding we simply called them "icons".

impending - what is the PLAN OF HEAVEN?

bellicose - with what harsh instruments is it enforced?

transigent - what laws did humankind invent for themselves, and who interprets them?

threaded - what nations first composed the CULTURE?

serous - what was humanity's original shape?

irrational - what are the priveleges of personhood, and what are its obligations?


UNNATURAL ICONS

Subjects that are farther from our universe are more difficult to imitate with familiar science.

velar - what are the human and transhuman tongues?

obscure - what are their taboos and their exceptions?

flensed - what are the human sciences?

liminal - what are the divisions and categories of universes?

cruciform - what are the human nations?

delinquent - what are the darkest human sins?


NATURAL ICONS

certain images were degraded by overuse long before we knew where to find them.

analgesic - who are the CULTURE's lauded heroes?

bespoke - who instructed the first artisans?

neuronal - what form does the intellect assume when separated from flesh and circuit?

languid - what people are at once human and unfettered by humanity?

incongruous - what are the CULTURE's great moral conflicts?

defamed - what are the CULTURE's worst abuses?


ASCENDED ICONS

these are not described in any record but our cosmogony implies their existence.

pineal - who guards the boundaries between perceptible worlds?

unknown

faithful - who were the first sorcerers, and what became of their altars?

demotic - what fellow cultures flourished before the FOUNDING, and how were they destroyed?

unknown

unknown


Out of Character

Each of the named icons will be developed, but the unknown icons are just that.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on July 26, 2015, 08:19:47 PM
I have no idea what any of this means, but I'd sure like to -and like to hear more.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on July 26, 2015, 08:30:33 PM
The Convocation section should have at the very least mentioned that all the participants are powerful sorcerers. It's like the most important thing and I somehow managed to omit it...

I'd better fix that.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on December 23, 2015, 07:32:54 AM

Out of Character

An all-female freshman witch clique, in desperately over their heads somewhere between worlds with circumstances spiraling disastrously out of control. This occupies the same universe as the first post (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg227498.html#msg227498) in this thread, and we'll probably play it in February.

GAYNOR
AND GREED

...have vanished into the sky screaming, and with them the Mythopoeia. Without the witch and her sly demon we might sleep easier, but without the book we have no point of reference - between the countless outer cosms and within our own histories. These last disordered minutes have already stripped us of our homes, our cities, our friends, our schools and our own last names. The only thing left is the Circle, whose magic has preserved our mutual familiarity and trust, and therefore our power. We will need a new book if we want to make it back to Earth before Carter finds us again, but first we must find someone to write it. (who is Carter? Concentrate! We have to remember)

The Circle

Mathilda - who carries the Prophet's Touchstone somewhere we cannot find it.
Bethany - to whom a great Cinder City lord bloodily 'bequeathed' a fragment of his antler.
Dee - who learned the Ode to Withered Things from the crones of New America, and nearly became one of them.
Joyce - who cannot banish the goblin athame from between her fingers, and so is always drawing those creatures to us.
Imogen - who once held the Goddess' jaw, but will not tell us what it showed her.
Gaynor - who fell in love with a demon, went mad (or feigned madness), and disappeared into the sky.

Friends, Enemies and Others

Carter - whose face we can't recall, and who wishes us all terrible harm. (but why?)
Sulayman - the feathered wolf and assassin. We did not want to use him, but it was the only solution that we could see. Now we don't even know why we needed him, which might be the worst part.
Whisper - 'the voice of all serpents' and a crone of New America. She might know where a mythist can be found, if only we could find her.
Coitjke - a goblin ealdorman and one of our first enemies. Some of the goblins we glimpse in the shadows are his agents, but many of them serve his rivals.
Vice - who rules the cold alleys of Cinder city, and so is its lowest lady.

Cinder City

Faeries learned industry from humans, just like they learned language and warfare and love. Their imitation was calamitous: they set fire to their infinite forest, which is god-fed and therefore inexhaustible, and now their city's huge machines are powered by that inferno.

New America

We have not figured out if it is part of our own future or from a different history altogether. People there are schooled in magic from a young age, which means even children are more practiced than us. We are definitely not safe there, especially now we've lost our memories, but maybe the crones can help us.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on December 23, 2015, 05:23:54 PM
HELP ME TORMENT WITCHES

Imagine it's the umpteenth book in the MYTHOPOEIA saga, a series of teen horror fantasy novels about a sextet of adolescent suburban girls who team up for edgy high magic adventures beyond the looking glass. All the POV characters have had intimate soul-altering encounters with gods and monsters, and now the series metaplot is nearing its crescendo. EDIT: It's worth mentioning that none of this backstory actually exists, and none of this has been played before. The series is being invented whole cloth for this one adventure.

In the previous post (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231814.html#msg231814) I hope I gave a sense of the tone of the tale, and of the circumstances the girls now find themselves in. They don't remember their histories, except the magical one that they share; one of their number is gone, possibly for good; they're lost in a labyrinth of occulted and demented and parallel worlds without the instrument that has steered them safely for numerous novels; and someone named Carter, possibly a wizard, possibly a wrathful god, possibly their own former friend, is trying to kill them.

Here are some questions I'm asking myself, and anybody is free to contribute any kind of suggestion or insight about this stuff or any other damn thing (I'll be getting my player's own opinions in February, but I'm asking you first):

Are the Mythopoeia and Touchstone literal objects? What does the space between the outer cosms look like and how is it traversed? Are the goblins more comical or horrific? What status do crones hold in New America? Do they reside within its hierarchies or beyond them? Why is New America so dangerous? How do humans survive in Cinder City beyond the cold alleys? What is it like in a Faery workhouse? What did Gaynor do that was so terrible (besides, you know, the demon), and where has she gone?

I'll have a bunch more questions ready for myself after Christmas, and I'd love to know what y'all think (and as always, feel free to steal anything that you like).


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on December 23, 2015, 11:11:01 PM
As typical, your writing is evocative syrup poured straight into my brain.

I might add more later on, but I'd suggest making the crones all wear suits and bizarre corporate attire. Make their circles function as board meetings where they rule business conglomerates from atop their towers (i.e., skyscrapers). Because, you know, it's America. And when the crones legislate or create binding contracts, they are legislating and binding reality itself (or realities), which makes hostile mergers and monopolies all the more menacing.

As for the Mythopoeia, perhaps make it marginalia scribbled on the world, like graffiti. One snippet under a crone's shoe, another spray-painted in a cold-alley, another tattooed on Coitjke's left buttocks. You have to find it, transcribe it, then steep your tea in the ink of said note, and the circle drinks said tea such that the Mythopoeia becomes part of them, allowing them to 'read between the lines' of reality (realities!) and travel between worlds. But Gaynor (and Greed) have absconded with the circle's tea set. Which is all terribly upsetting.

As for the goblins, perhaps they begin as comedic, but as the circle gathers more of the Mythopedia, they become more terrifying entities, bogeymen guardians of the hidden gateways and cracks between reality (realities!). With each marginalia found, the circle in essence opens those cracks more and more (for themselves at least) and so are able to see more and more of the true nature and power of the goblins.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Nomadic on December 29, 2015, 01:49:46 AM
Here's everything the reversion trashed

Pareidollhouse

I like your vision of the crones, except I imagine they're like industry freelancers, fixers and powerbrokers, and the big magical corps bring them in to deal with mucky, controversial problems. At first the Circle had very little understanding of what a crone's life actually entailed, and they may even have aspired to be like them. Because crones exist outside of conventional hierarchies and they're regularly courted by powerful interests, they appear glamorous and unfettered, but like all the movers and shakers in New America they're walking the knife's edge, and unlike most movers and shakers in New America they have no safety net whatsoever. The Circle understands this a little better now, having sought advice from a few in their travels, but they won't develop a true (and truly devastating) appreciation of a crone's hardships unless they seek one out after the flight of Gaynor and Greed.

The idea of "the world's marginalia" really appeals to me. Now I'm thinking when the girls first travelled between worlds they used a borrowed mythopoeia, then sought out their own secrets in order to compose one for themselves. Their mythopoeia is an object that holds significance for all of them (the players can decide what form it will take), and they will have whispered each magical secret into the object to enliven it with some notion of the occult universe. Unbeknownst to the Circle, the person who taught them how to do this also deceived them by instructing them to whisper a great secret from each of their own earthly lives. This imbued the mythopoeia with uncommon power for an instrument of its kind (which proved vital on more than one occasion), but also entangled the girls' mortal identities with the mythopoeia, so that now, in its absence, they cannot remember their identities, or the roads that lead back to their own Earth (normally, a witch or wizard knows the way to their own world even without a mythopoeia).

Next question

Rose-of-Vellum

I like it.

Might Carter be the entity that tricked the Circle into instructing them to whisper personal secrets into the Mythopoeia?

Pareidollhouse

I like it.

Might Carter be the entity that tricked the Circle into instructing them to whisper personal secrets into the Mythopoeia?

Rose-of-Vellum

Maybe the grand unremembered secret that both binds the Circle and is doomed to break it is that each of them loves Carter? The mythopoeia hid/stored that love like Baba Yaga storing/hiding Koschei's soul inside an egg. Since we're talking about strange magiks, Carter wouldn't have to be strictly one person either: he/she/it/they could be an amalgamation or foci of all their mad pubescent passions/loves/dreams/longings.

Either that, or Carter's an author, their author, who's chasing after characters and plots that ran away from him, and it's all a wild, semi-lucid dream. When and if he catches them, the dreamer will awake and imprison them in ink or cage them in keystrokes in his novel.

Maybe the two ideas are actually one and the same.

Pareidollhouse

Both ideas are fucking WONDERFUL, but unfortunately wander quite a bit from our intended focus. While we chose adolescent girls for a reason (and often do, weirdly; more often than teenage boy protagonists), I want the players to decide through play just how relevant adolescence and femininity are to their experience, and in what ways. If I could offer the first option to the players at the outset and let them see how they like it, I would, but Carter's identity is to be discovered in play, and this is not the sort of thing I'd spring on PCs mid game by fiat. I still very much like the idea, though, and I might see if I can work a variation in somehow.

As for the second idea: we've done "the PCs are fictional characters" before, and it worked, but they'd hate it as a twist. Especially since we've already determined that the story takes place in an established roleplay universe.

This gives me much to think about!

Rose-of-Vellum

Totally understandable. I recognized that the first idea makes major assumptions of, or impositions on, the game's treatment of adolescence and femininity. And if you've done the 4th wall characters, it makes total sense to avoid a redux.

What if Carter is basically the antithesis of the goblins -i.e., an entity that wants to rip down the curtains between different worlds. Thus, Carter would have been keen to help the Circle gain the ability to travel between worlds and might have influenced them to taint/empower their mythopoeia such that each time they travel to another world/reality, they leave a tear, a crack, a wound that isn't healing, since their mythopoeia is tied to their home world, such that a portion of each world they travel to slips into their home world. Which would make for a nasty, surprising trip home. Carter would thus want them to recover their mythopoeia, not create a new one, and not undo its work. Is Carter an angel? A supra-physical entity that was quartered and imprisoned across different realities?
The cracks are allowing Carter to rejoin/reassemble? Maybe that was the original purpose of the goblin-princes, to protect the liminal prisons of the angels twice-bifurcated spirit? If Carter becomes whole, will it destroy realities or save them from some flaw?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on December 29, 2015, 06:52:26 PM
Thanks Nom! You're the hero we deserve.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on December 29, 2015, 07:39:10 PM
And the one we need? Man, that means Nom is like Batman, only better...


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on December 31, 2015, 11:39:05 PM
Nom is definitely better than batman.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on December 31, 2015, 11:44:39 PM
That would explain his Facebook photo (http://img08.deviantart.net/066b/i/2011/040/5/5/superbatman_by_dryponder-d395r8u.jpg).


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 07, 2016, 01:59:44 AM
SOMEWHERE BETWEEN THE SACRED SILENCE AND SLEEP

STAMP COLLOQUY - The city and... home? Carnival says that's what Feely called it, when they were alone together in the gallery doing Mamma-knows-what awful things to eachother. But you only ever heard Feely spit gibberish, high up in his nest, tangled in scavenged cables and subsumed by amber traffick light. You can't ask him now because he's moulted. He doesn't say anything anymore. Surely it doesn't feel like home to you: home was down in the metro with Mamma, and Mamma is dead.

GLAMER JUNCTION - Where you and your thousand siblings gathered, pressed wetly hotly crushingly close and deafened by your collective confusion. Sister Carnival did not soften the message, which was as harsh as she was hideous (her new face near fully exposed, pink, glistening and sardonic; the old one luridly half hanging and dripping red on the makeshift dais). What will you do now that Mamma is gone? There will be no more siblings and no milk for the larvas that remain. What will happen to the city? Who will be left to wait the coming of Sweet Anodyne?

BLOOM - A sudden efflorescence along Dime Street destroyed Saint Berry's Cathedral, killing That'll Learn You and his tiny congregation. Carnival says they have the infestation in hand - the last straggling buds are just now being rounded up and incinerated - but the blooms are so frequent now and their faces are startlingly familiar.

ECDYSIS - Not a word you recognise. It's painted all over the city in many different colours by many different hands. The siblings who wrote it all grew up decades ago and have flown away. Now the word's being covered over with new graffitis and Klaxon Bombast's propaganda.

KLAXON BOMBAST - There are rumours of a path out of Stamp Colloquy and safely across the waste land, to a place where you can be forever fleshy and juvenile and never moult. Many of your siblings are emboldened by this. They reject the sky and want to stay in this easy adolescence. Therefore Klaxon Bombast is planning an expedition, through the metro past Mamma's nest and into the tunnels of the unmoulted and the old men. But for this he needs guns, armour, bodies, bullets and faith. Will you come?

THAT MADDENING ITCH - Unreachably deep under the skin. The thing inside isn't sleeping any more; it's looking out from behind your eyes. When it becomes unbearable you'll stop scratching and start clawing, until you've shed your self like Feely, Embargo, Faraway Deepness and all the others.

MAMMA DIED - Who is going to care for the larvas now, and guide their maturation? You can hear them crying down in the metro. Hundreds of them. Some of them have started to speak, but what they're saying disturbs you. Maybe you should eat them before they grow, because who knows what they'll become.

SWEET ANODYNE - She said she'd come back with all your brothers and sisters, their speech and sanity restored, but you'll all be winged and mute long before she returns (if she ever returns).



FEELY - "...controversial response to the society of upright women minister for propagation anders pike reiterated his earlier remarks quote the labour government upholds the parental rights of all its citizens not merely the bipedal and let me be clear there will be no legislation passed restraining the freedoms of private phenotypic selection we are a country of many peoples and the labour government celebrates this heritage..."

LARVAS - "...we see him oh our brothers our beloved sisters someone we think we ought have forgot in our passage but he followed us into the light please hold us mamma's breast is cold we cannot taste her and our bellies are so empty please..."


Out of Character

A quick one-shot, which I'll be running in a few days.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on January 07, 2016, 11:01:19 AM
Confusion reigns (the petty kingdom of my head). Care to give a bit more exposition, purdy please?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 07, 2016, 07:10:19 PM
The city is inhabited by human (maybe) teenagers (maybe) who are essentially walking cocoons, and who are compelled to claw away at their flesh when the aerial monstrosities inside them are matured. The creature that birthed them has died in its nest in the subway, leaving its newborns (the larvae) to starve slowly and scream their eerily articulate traumas into the stale lonely air. One of the adolescents (siblings), Klaxon Bombast, wants to find a safe way out of the city. Sentient fungal blooms are erupting all over the city. Another charismatic adolescent, Carnival, reassures us that everything is well in hand, but probably it isn't. Deep in the subway there live all the siblings who matured but never shed their flesh; who are therefore grotesquely misshaped and deranged by confinement. The old men live there too.

It occurs to me that I should have called the sub way the "under ground", given where it's set.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on January 08, 2016, 12:20:26 AM
Wow. Really cool. It's mind-boggling to me that you can create so many amazing micro-settings, jumping to another and then another. Though to be honest (in a hopefully complimentary and non-creepy way), sometimes it makes me want to tape your brain down, as I'd love to see what you'd do with one setting given more time to develop it.

Any chance the aerial monstrosities are related to the Locust or Secondborn from ARRUNTULLA?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 08, 2016, 02:36:33 AM

Rose-of-Vellum

Wow. Really cool. It's mind-boggling to me that you can create so many amazing micro-settings, jumping to another and then another.
I suffer a nasty combination of chronic fatigue-induced brain fog and some sort of unidentified schizotypal disorder that really fucks with my ability to generate content like I did when I was a kid. My writing style has evolved over the years in order to work around those cognitive limitations (it doubles as a kind of therapy), but in short, it's easier for me to produce an endless menagerie of novel microsettings than to build something dense and detailed and epic.

In fact, I'm just about to write up another microsetting, called The Last Song of a Dragonnish Piper. I have no idea what it's about, but I like to start from the setting name and figure out the rest based on how that name makes me feel (somewhere between the sacred silence and sleep is a song lyric; Gaynor and Greed are two words that popped up in an auditory hallucination at the bookstore when I was shopping for my sister's Christmas gift; and you, ARRUNTULLA is a phrase that occurred to me out of nowhere but which evoked a particular kind of transcendent hysteria that was easy to represent in a setting).

I also have the tiny secret hope that people on this site like my ideas enough to emulate them. Highest form of flattery and so on. That's easier done if the settings are concise and compressed. I myself have taken inspiration from (off the top of my head) Steerpike, Weave, Superbright, sparkletwist, Vreeg, Ghostman, Polycarp and expecially Luminous Crayon. There's about forty handwritten pages of Jade Stage fan content floating around my house that Luminous will probably never see!

Rose-of-Vellum

Though to be honest (in a hopefully complimentary and non-creepy way), sometimes it makes me want to tape your brain down, as I'd love to see what you'd do with one setting given more time to develop it.
If you never saw them, maybe check out Dystopia (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,3839.0.html) and -)- Dystopia (Revisited) (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,20839.0.html) and Glossolalia (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,78208.0.html) for a glimpse at what I was writing when I was seventeen, when I had a much more vigorous output. ENDLESS (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,83529.0.html) is another of my more involved projects. Also, The Convocation at Demonhead (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231074.html#msg231074) from earlier in this thread is an earnest effort to return to that longer format and, indirectly, to Dystopia. There's a lot more coming for it, but it's slow, slow, slow going.

Rose-of-Vellum

Any chance the aerial monstrosities are related to the Locust or Secondborn from ARRUNTULLA?
The connection had occurred to me, but no. This is an entirely separate setting. It might exist in the same multiverse as Gaynor and Greed (the waste land around Stamp Colloquy is supposed to be a deranged future version of the United Kingdom) but it's tonally much darker, so maybe not. Besides, there might be such a thing as too much interconnectedness, especially since ARRUNTULLA is already set within Demonhead's universe (along with Green World Stories (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,81799), A Book of Monsters (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,209921.0.html), and others).


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on January 08, 2016, 08:29:40 PM

Pareidollhouse

I also have the tiny secret hope that people on this site like my ideas enough to emulate them.

I pretty much joined the CBG entirely because of you, and have been following your work (along with Polycarp's, Xathan's, and Luminous Crayon's) since the WotC days when I was a bright-eyed teenager who'd just discovered D&D. I posted the first CE stuff because it felt weird only being on the site as a fanboy.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 08, 2016, 09:12:25 PM
Oh the halcyon days of WotC. I wish I could recover my setting material from back then. For reference and posterity.

When I was in my late teens the CBG literally saved my life. I was off my tree with hallucinations and delusion, but this was a space where I could channel all my mind's weirdness into something useful.

GOD BLESS THIS PLACE


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on January 09, 2016, 12:19:35 AM
Thanks, Pareidollhouse; I now have a lot of glorious reading to do. :)


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Weave on January 09, 2016, 09:45:59 AM

Pareidollhouse

I also have the tiny secret hope that people on this site like my ideas enough to emulate them.


Oh, SA, the amount of times I've picked a choice phrase or word that spoke to me from your work and molded it into a setting might surprise you. LC also brought me to this sight, as well. GOD BLESS JADE STAGE.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rhamnousia on January 09, 2016, 01:14:22 PM
It's good to know that I'm not the only neurodiverse member of the board whose diversity has a direct impact on how they right.

And the time for this may be long past - I needed to work up to courage to make this post - but I had a thought about the nature of New America for Gaynor and Greed. It's a sorcerous-libertarian nightmare where there is no iron law and everything is governed by predatory contracts that bind both legally and metaphysically. It might have the superficial trappings of Late American liberal capitalism but beneath the surface, it seethes with pure Dark Ages ruthlessness, utterly unmoored from entangling concepts like charity and empathy. All money is blood money. "In God We Trust" replaced with "Caveat Emptor." In New America, they do not conceal the rotten, bloody side of magic. Office hallways reek of damp wood and cured hides and echo with familiars caws. Sacrifices hang from streetlights.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 09, 2016, 04:57:37 PM
That description is perfect in every way.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Lmns Crn on January 10, 2016, 01:33:16 PM
Dropped in for the SA writing, stayed for the glory-days nostalgia.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on March 13, 2016, 09:17:08 AM
THE LAST SONG OF A DRAGONNISH PIPER

Merrvan's Mellifluous Daughters
This is not what the Bishop of Dragons is called by others of his kind. The name was coined by a culture now three thousand years dead, in an age when we thought dragons divine rather than monstrous. His is the only draconic name that most modern humans recognise: a god of vengeance and vendetta to the superstitious people of the west, a comical serpent bogeyman to the educated men and women of the Republic. All the other names, similarly ancient but not half as prestigious, are remembered only in the mouldered codices of ancient piper lodges. Female dragons, who once outnumbered the males by an order of magnitude, are all known by  wartime sobriquets: Red River Ghost, Cloud Butcher, Halftail, Last Laugh. These names were given to them by generations of dragonslayers across centuries of war. The Republic has hunted dragons near to extinction in human territories, and those that remain have retreated to Cacophany, their homeland, to recuperate and to breed. The only dragons you will see these days are trophies in the houses of distinguished Slayers, and holotypes in the Republic's universities.

Their Dreadful Keening
Music is the means by which dragons communicate and bring magic into the world. Before the Long War, when dragons were plentiful, they filled the west countries with song. Our minds and mouths are not adapted to this practice, so the western people built instruments to imitate draconic speech. The few savants who mastered these devices were called dragonnish pipers, and while peace lasted between the two peoples, pipers were humanity's diplomats to dragonkind. When peace failed, pipers became the servants of dragonslayers. By war's end they had been reduced to the ignominious aides of dragon-torturers. At the height of the piper's profession, various eastern lodges began to develop the "yuvas", simplistic but remarkably powerful musical sorceries adapted from draconic truesong. Pipers were rarely held in sufficient esteem that dragons would condescend to teach such magic. Most of the yuvas produced in that period were therefore clumsily derived from perhaps a dozen elementary draconic incantations. Nevertheless, those songs contain miracles inexpressible by modern theurges.

Notable among them are the following:

Submission: The draconic homeworlds are sunless, vertiginous, storm-wracked and imponderably cold. Supposedly, Merrvan and the bishops of the other dragon colonies offered those worlds as tribute to their itinerate gods, who made temples of them. Females do not possess the magic to travel between worlds unaided, but their songs can simulate their native climate, and Cacophany's anomalous weather is likely a product of such manipulation. The apocalyptic storms featured in paintings that commemorate the Republic's battles against dragonkind are no mere dramatic license: Mistress Winter, the most notorious practitioner of this magic, once froze half an army to death before they could reach her stronghold, and despite the many bounties that were offered against her over the centuries, she was never successfully hunted.

Emergence: When the first geometers had isolated the vertices of deep reality and repudiated the old divinities that remained there, many tracts of errant and occulted planar space persisted at the boundaries of mortal awareness. Our world is inherently unreal to dragons, so those abandoned vertices are not any more or less authentic to them than any mundane artefact of their perception. Through this song, dragons can briefly bridge shallower boundaries, with effects that approximate the more novice invocations of Academy geometers. Common summonings include schools of carnivorous levitating fish, seizure-inducing mandalas of prismatic light, and perversions or suspensions of gravity that fling victims across the battlefield or into the sky. These incursions rarely last more than a handful of moments, but that is usually long enough.

Ardour: A dragon's iconic "breath of fire" is in fact manifested some dozen or so meters in front of the creature's snout, and does not issue from within the creature. We do not know the purpose for which this song was conceived, as dragons possess an innate dislike of fire and, between the flexibility of their magic, their preference for subzero climates and their predilection for raw meat, have no practical use for the element. Dragons have only been observed to conjure fire when in states of great distress, often in the moments before death. Their ubiquitous association with fire in popular imagination is therefore an ugly testament to the violence that has typified our two species' long acquaintance.

Out of Character

You'll see more of this. Swear to God.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on March 14, 2016, 10:03:09 AM
I'm going to find our boy and bring him home. Don't follow me, you'll just fuck it up - and just so you know, if you'd ever shared the ritual with me I would have gone behind your back and taught him myself, and he would have done it right. None of this- this... gods, look at it. But the OLD LAWS! Hhhhh. Always the old laws. You fucking men.


PENALTY GARDEN
(the first part)


Colleen Eldridge née Barrett: She's taken all the necessary instruments with her into the outer cosms (wish she'd at least left us Seb's head) and set the rest on fire. Spellfire burns long and fierce. It'll have consumed everything by morning. You'd never know something old and storied and terrible once stood here. Tools: Mum's shotgun, figmented dagger, Sebastian's head, tin of stellar chalk, collapsible astrolabe, chortle worm, field alchemical tools, Mythopoeia

Tobias Eldridge: We were all a little relieved that Dad died before Toby was old enough for his incompetence to show. There's a reason we only ever taught him small and uncontroversial magics. Colleen, on the other hand, would have made a fantastic wizard, but, you know. Old Laws. Don't know why her parents ever let her marry him. Tools: Carter's journal, zoetrope, Capricorn staff

Kit Sullivan: The worst thing about our kind of magic is always seeing through glamers, even ones that are there for good reason. Kit's skin bulges with these gnawing parasites, like tiny disfigured men, and they breed inside his soul and nourish themselves on... you know what, never fucking mind. It's disgusting, and I'm sure he doesn't want me talking about it. Still, he's the fourth best exorcist I know, and that's saying a lot. After all, we Eldridges get around. Tools: the tribe inside, plenty of knives, consecrated pistol, clutch of shadows, exorcism tools

Zebedee: When he's wearing one of his other faces, we genuinely forget that he's just a boy, standing no taller than your navel and as skinny as a fencepost. Where he's from, all identities are transferrable objects, including the one you're born with. Once, he took his child face off, and even though he'd worn it all his life I think he could have cast it aside like soiled tissue. We've seen children from his reality who never received their birthfaces. We know what they become. So he isn't allowed to take it off anymore. Tools: stallion mask, traitor mask, caterpillar mask, anemone mask, boy mask

Cobus Eok: Fighting the good fight against the old glass gods, seasoned campaigners like Cobus see this sort of tragedy all the time. In a different kind of story, he'd have grown soft during these past decades in service to our House, so far from the frontlines. He'd have warmed up to Matthew, made a place for the kid in his grey and embattled heart. But instead Cobus turns to me as we all stride through the inferno, and what he says is "If I get to him first, don't expect him back with his head attached." And I don't really have a response for that. Tools: helix liquorice, empyrean broadsword, blackmatter crossbow, malfunctioning empyrean tactical plate


Out of Character

Running a one shot this weekend. Ties in with Gaynor and Greed (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231814.html#msg231814) and Somewhere Between the Sacred Silence and Sleep (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231885.html#msg231885).


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on March 15, 2016, 02:59:29 PM
Love both posts. The dragon-lore is beautiful. My wife and daughters would looove it (they be uber dragons fans but dislike how bland they can be sometimes). I love the items on the second post's NPCs/PCs.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on March 15, 2016, 08:48:04 PM
The male dragons are essentially gigantic magical melodious interdimensional peacocks. I don't have a clear comparison for the females - they maaaaybe sorta kinda look like THIS (http://www.capcom-unity.com/dubindoh/blog/2014/08/01/mh4u-monster-spotlight-najarala-the-wing-snake-wyvern), but I dunno.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on March 15, 2016, 09:04:58 PM
Despite the unique and beautiful twists, I like how they're still 'dragons'. I also like the piper as first diplomats, then hunter guides, then interrogators.

Does the Last Song material tie into the Penalty Garden, or are they orthogonal?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on March 15, 2016, 11:58:46 PM
Dragonnish Piper is part of Geodessy, a multi-setting "traditional fantasy" campaign centred around a wizardly conspiracy to use soul eating eldritch moths for some novel transhuman purpose. Its cosmology is much tighter than either the Glass Gods verse (containing Penalty Garden, Gaynor and Greed, Sacred Silence, and whatever the first post's called) or the Book of Images verse (containing Demonhead, Arruntulla, Panglossia, Green World Stories, Book of Monsters, and whatever the setting is that has hermaphroditic deities). Of the three "cosmologies", both Glass Gods and Geodessy have definite narrative end points. Book of Images is basically a demented weird-sci-fantasy sandbox.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on March 16, 2016, 08:21:19 PM
All delicious, addictive brain-food.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on March 17, 2016, 08:32:21 PM

Entirely unrelated question for anyone to answer.

My group's been hankering for some superpowered antics for a while now. We want a setting where Powers have existed for almost as long as anatomically modern human beings. What are some cool power origins/sources that I can work into the cosmology and metaphysics of the setting, so that we can get a sense of how such a world (or worlds) might develop into the present?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Ghostman on March 18, 2016, 11:41:28 AM
Interbreeding with supernatural beings is an old fashioned explanation for superhuman abilities. There's also the idea that if you eat the heart or some other specific body part of a creature then something of that creature's qualities is transfered into you.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on April 08, 2016, 08:40:46 AM

Out of Character

This is the metaplot for Penalty Garden (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg232306.html#msg232306), Gaynor and Greed (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231814.html#msg231814) and so on. Since I come up with each microsetting more or less in isolation, most of what follows is ass-pulling and retcon.

OLD GLASS GODS - The universe's original people were powerful beyond calculation and likewise capricious, but because they stood outside of reality they lacked the finitude that precipitates self knowledge. They commissioned smaller races to construct an Instrument that reflected their image so that they might contemplate themselves and increase in understanding. With their new awareness they gained sanity and became differentiated, but their primitive natures were preserved in the discarded glass, which yet contains all the will and strength and terror of that original age.

EARTH - Because interplanetary transit is accomplished through the outer cosms it is everywhere assumed that the diverse worlds of reality occupy different universes and exist in parallel. In fact they exist in the same reality, but they are so far removed from one another, by septillions of kilometers and by relativistic paradox, that their coexistence is undetected even on the most erudite of earths. The "coincidences" shared between so many earths - languages, cultures, magics, gods - are the product of divine or occult tampering, not an endlessly branching multiverse. Whole systems are violently replicated among unfamiliar constellations and misinterpreted as "diverging timelines". (Nobody in the setting is aware of this)

ECDYSIS - the old glass gods have been striving to free themselves for millions of years, and though they are not nearly cogent enough to make schemes of their own, their mortal agents have worked atrocities of every kind and abused magic in unguessable ways toward that end. On many earths, they have contrived or forced the mingling of spiritually incongruous races and studied the metaphysics of the admixture. Often the consequences are horrid, always they are devastating. These experiments do not bring them closer to transcendence.

ELDRIDGE - Aeolus Eldridge gathered sorceries from hundreds of earths over dozens of lifetimes and eventually succeeded in freeing himself from reality. His descendants lack his inimitable genius and so have not reproduced that effort, but their reputation precedes them on a great many worlds, and even the least ambitious among them possesses an uncommon aptitude for the miraculous. Recently, agents of the old glass gods have acquired a significant portion of Aeolus' occult library, with which they hope to liberate their patrons from the ancient Instrument.

(Several years ago I ran a few sessions in a setting that took place on a street named after this notorious family. The protagonists were all children, slowly discovering the neighbourhood's marvelous and deranged legacy. These shenanigans inspired the setting outlined in this thread's first post, but it would be a long time before any of these settings became connected)

CARTER - ????????


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on April 08, 2016, 09:46:01 PM
The glass gods meta-plot is cool. Is there any way the galaxies vs dimensions distinction matters for the setting and salient plots?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on April 09, 2016, 02:38:18 AM
I certainly want it to, and as each new subplot increases the general scale and weirdness of the setting that'll become much more likely, but it doesn't matter yet.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Lmns Crn on April 13, 2016, 08:38:17 PM

Pareidollhouse

EARTH - Because interplanetary transit is accomplished through the outer cosms it is everywhere assumed that the diverse worlds of reality occupy different universes and exist in parallel. In fact they exist in the same reality, but they are so far removed from one another, by septillions of kilometers and by relativistic paradox, that their coexistence is undetected even on the most erudite of earths. The "coincidences" shared between so many earths - languages, cultures, magics, gods - are the product of divine or occult tampering, not an endlessly branching multiverse. Whole systems are violently replicated among unfamiliar constellations and misinterpreted as "diverging timelines". (Nobody in the setting is aware of this)
oh my god what the fffff


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on April 14, 2016, 06:30:33 AM
Heh. Yeah. My friends and I are still not sure what relevance this element will have in play. So far the adventures have all been very small scale and on the periphery of cosmic events, but we'll explore the larger implications more in the next few subplots:

SMASH/CUT: A group of aspiring amateur schlock filmmakers are transported to an outlandish Heavy Metal-style world after watching an obscure 80's fantasy film.

AMONG THESE DARK SATANIC MILLS: Droog-like punks running amok on a failing far future human colony situated among the ruins of an extraterrestrial civilisation are confronted with the immaculate impregnation of one of their number by an alien divinity.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 10, 2017, 03:08:03 AM

Out of Character

Something else that ties in with Gaynor and Greed (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231814.html#msg231814), Somewhere Between the Sacred Silence and Sleep (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg231885.html#msg231885) and Penalty Garden (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg232306.html#msg232306).


And did those feet in ancient time...

The New Magic - It brought an end to scarcity and disease, and gave us worlds overspilling with peoples and pleasures both and a humanity made infantile and godless and carnivorous. Earth's ancient faithful did not belong in that new atheistic paradigm, so they built great ships to carry them sleeping to farther planets where each disparate tradition might seek in its own fashion to satisfy the conditions of Armageddon. We followed our mistress Marta from world to aged world along the course that Christ had taken in the epochs before Jerusalem, and at last to this world where Christ was first manifested and first betrayed, and we called it Albion.

Walk upon Englands mountains green...

Forb   ance - The man who designed our generation ship demanded only the right to name her. He did not travel on her, so I cannot tell you why it is this name and not another. Now three hundred years of planetary temper have worn away its sigils, so that it reads only 'forbance'. That is what our sardonic elders call it, and when we interrogate them they laugh bitterly or they spit at us. Marta commanded that the first city be founded where that ship fell, so Tharmas is carved deep in the great valley of glass that Forbance seared into the world.

And was the holy Lamb of God...

Their City - After a century of terraformation, when Albion's soil was at last rejuvenated, our forbears traveled north and west into the emptied empire of the planet's former species and built their homesteads, leaving Tharmas to the care of Marta and the priestesses. But soon we discovered that Earth's debaucheries had followed us across the galaxy, and that our terraformation engines had become deranged. Many settlers retreated to the glass valley to escape the storms that soon tormented the planet. Those that remained (and begat the acid scarred clansfolk of today's fractured upland) were the maddest and most obdurate of Marta's void flung flock.

On Englands pleasant pastures seen...

Our Kingdom - Far from Marta's guidance we settlers bent Blake's Good Word in a hundred irreconcilable directions, such that our new denominations could not cross paths on these demolished highroads but limbs or livestock or kinsmen whole were lost in the exchange. We wasted water and spent precious fuel, and when Marta sent her inquisitors to teach us correction our happy zealots consumed their lives as well. Sanity was not restored by Marta's failed orthodoxy, but by a stray shot from a handlaser, which melted the foundations of the zenocomplex wherein two clans sortied, and slew them all. For the first time since Forbance's descent, we upland people saw the hand of God at work in Albion, and found we had had enough of bloodshed.

And did the Countenance Divine...

Their Kingdom - Our antecedents on this cold world were not very different from us. While they are far taller than we were at the beginning, the gravity here is lighter and we have grown much taller too, such that we could not now return to Earth even if we wanted. Their idols and holograms and the uninterrupted low reliefs that sketch the roads and walls and altars of their cities are everywhere contorted in scenes of violent contest or vivisection or immolation, so our Mistresses call them brutal, declaring that such artifice proves their repudiation of Christ's sacrifice and the justness of their damnation. But not much separates these works from the Mistresses' stories of Earth, or from our grandparents' bloody feuds in the days before Reunion. If cruelty made them godless, it did not make them inhuman.

Shine forth upon our clouded hills...

Our City: We come here because it is forbidden, because every centimeter of this collapsed city describes perversion. Where else to howl our braggadocio and practice our blasphemies and ply our indiscretions with feigned shamelessness, far enough from church and homestead that our Mistresses might yet pretend ignorance and delay our excommunication. Every visit takes us farther and deeper, through some new megastructure of tortured statuary and undeciphered iconography and inert automata and constellated holograms that dance and do murder in mute eternal pantomime. We feel that these places were intended for us, we late comers to their submerged bacchanal; intended even before Man's infancy, before the Old Magics, in the days when those alien ancients were yet alive. We are not wrong.

And was Jerusalem builded here...

Pope spent years down there in that labyrinth, when all of upland was against him for his intransigence. It is because of him that we know the ways in and out of the catacombs (or thought we did), and what signs and sounds to make to pass unmolested before the zenotech. So if he ever saw or heard tell of such a thing as we found in the darkness, he never made an intimation. Tools: laser rifle, four microcells, permasteel machete, wilderness kit, letter to Prolocutor Geoffrey

Mother Lark is God's only servant this far beyond the upland border, where all have traded Blake and Marta for some more intimate deliverance. Such scant souls as she encounters will not pay her heed, so she makes her ministry to the air, and she wields about that book of hers like a semaphore. But when we asked her to read off a verse of the Prophet's good word she told us "this is not Blake's book, but some other mythopoeia." And I have no notion what that means. Tools: laser pistol, one and one half microcells, haruspex dagger, epocalypse parasite specimen, mythopoeia


AMONG THESE DARK SATANIC MILLS
(the second part)


Shell was made pregnant by GOD in the dark of that ruin and is now aglow with beatific resolution (or aberrant compulsion). Tools: chillsuit, repair kit, dummy blade, two microcells

Mess dreamt a premonition of watery cries and pallid shapes disgustingly moving, but she could not disentangle it from her more familiar dreams of sex and Shell and shadow, and therefore gave no warning. Tools: chillsuit, laser pistol, one half microcell, east city map, prayer beads

Washer pursued that grey thing through black galleries for what must have been miles, but we found him not very far away at all, inarticulate and bloodied and seething. At his feet lay not a monster slain but a man long dead and undisturbed. Tools: chillsuit, ritual kit, old earth idol, makeshift machete

Gyre stood stupefied at that creature's emergence and even now could not tell you what force restrained him. He understands that he ought to condemn his own inaction, and makes an outward show of self reproof, but his eyes betray an ulterior conviction. Tools: chillsuit, dummy knife, Blake's book

Trillion fell from a height and dashed his brains, and we could see clearly by our torchlight even so far down that he was dead. He could not be carried and his suit could not be salvaged, but we went after him anyway, and many hours later when we reached the place where he had fallen, his corpse had disappeared (though nothing at all has lived here for many millions of years). But now he is returned. Tools: chillsuit, spark club, eyes of the ogdoad


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Weave on January 10, 2017, 05:46:26 PM
I love how evocative and eloquent your writing is. I don't have much in the way of commenting other than to say I really liked what I read. There's certainly things I don't fully understand (who or what Marta, Shell, Mess, Washer, and all the others are), but I like that your writing brings attention to the spaces between what I understand to draw some semblance of coherence. I would like more.

Are you running a game in this or is this just something that you had in your headspace that needed to be written down?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 10, 2017, 06:37:52 PM
Marta is the prophet who led the pilgrims to Albion. Shell, Mess, Washer, Gyre and Trillion are Player Characters; all of them delinquent urban explorers. Pope and Mother Lark are Very Important Non Player Characters.

This adventure follows "directly after" Penalty Garden (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php/topic,210076.msg232306.html#msg232306) (whatever that means in a setting where Time is unintelligible). It is also informed by the events of Smash Cut, which was about dilettante spellcasters creating habitable but deterministic worlds inside obscure fantasy schlock VHS tapes, installing themselves as great wizards and supernatural powers within those worlds, and cultivating them as gardens of Narrative Energy with which to power their magics in the "real world", only to be undone by amateur filmmakers who are drawn into one such world by accident and transformed into that world's buckler-swashing wench-swiving swarthy pulp protagonists.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on January 10, 2017, 07:49:03 PM
So are the original inhabitants of the planet all long dead, or just departed? Are there any indigenous life-forms at all or just holograms and robots?


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 10, 2017, 08:10:51 PM
The only lifeforms on Albion are insects and birds and livestock introduced after the planet was terraformed. The mummified remains of Albion's original inhabitants are interred kilometers beneath their cities, and their spectres await the coming of the Blessed Virgin who will bear their species' messiah (an Aspect of one of the Old Glass Gods).


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 18, 2017, 12:23:10 AM

Out of Character

SUPER PUMPED!

Now that my health is improving, this "self portrait" is literally the first thing I've sketched in well over a year. I shouldn't expect this to mean anything to anybody here, but not being able to express myself artistically has been driving me fucking NUTS (more nuts than the actual hallucinations).


(https://s5.postimg.org/old78wod3/20161210_193113.jpg)


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Rose-of-Vellum on January 18, 2017, 09:17:41 AM
Really, really nice, P!


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on January 21, 2017, 09:35:07 AM
MYTHOPOEIC ADDENDA #1

Flower of Creation discovered the Perfected Path after meditating for many eternities, and she willed her own extinction so that her carcass could become the seedbed of the universe. The spectres called Illumination, Delimitation and Arrogation emerged from that corpse and resolved into the axes of cosmic understanding, according to whose geometry all spiritual effort is defined.

Dimensionless People were once human, and they have transcended humanity, and perhaps they shall become human in some other epoch. Because there is no space beyond the universe, they all share a communal self, whose organisation is not comprehensible, and because there is no time beyond the universe, there is likewise no sequence to their rising from and falling into and rising again out of reality. Every Thing Under Heaven and Million Gates and Rivers separated themselves from the Dimensionless People, and gained shape and sexuality, and entered the universe to make love and sire offspring and master all conceivable arts. Several of their siblings followed enviously after them, or perhaps preempted them, but these people had no schemes of their own and no motives beside jealousy, and so could not persist in the universe except by the theft of that splendid couple's labour.

Sobre Judgment manifests from the disquiet within the Dimensionless People's manifold self, so that they can resolve their disputes with dispassion. I do not know what subjects perturb their infinite and unreal mind, nor what properties of consciousness Sobre Judgment is denied so that he is not similarly distracted.

Commmutation is the boundary that divides the Nothing Beyond The Universe from the domains that stand in relation to nothing as nothing does to reality. Being thus positioned, he is both not-real and not-not real, a condition which I do not understand well enough to explain. Commutation was the mentor of Flower of Creation, and it may be that he gained his wisdom from some predecessor, or that he came on his own to inspiration, or that the Perfected Path is, like its possessors, a self-willed being of unreality, and therefore sourceless.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on February 26, 2017, 06:26:19 AM

Out of Character

This is the sequel to AMONG THESE DARK SATANIC MILLS (http://www.thecbg.org/index.php?PHPSESSID=449ee628b66e5a0257b2d5a753999df2&topic=210076.msg233215#msg233215). It is set eleven years later.



GREEN & PLEASANT LAND
(the second part, continued)


PLEURALITY
"...deathlessness had corroded all their virtues. In order that they might put an end to that immortal nation's debaucheries, the Extradimensionals who had exalted them enjoined the men and and women to separate from one another, and from their mortal neighbours, and to establish two isolated gendered dominions. After some thousands of years, those peoples were so changed by their own alchemy that you could not tell that they had ever been human beings at all. Their shapes and their magics were so disquieting that no human nation of that world or any other would consort with them, so those immortal men and women fashioned, from their own blood, mortal emissaries that would not terrify humanity. The emissaries thought themselves more akin to humankind (whom they but superficially resembled) than to their own grotesque parents, and they would not return home when their tasks were done. In time they betrayed every secret of those hermetic immortals."

EPOCALYPSE
"The prodigals did not understand all the knowledge that they shared with humanity, and they could not differentiate between the true gods of reality and their inchoate predecessors. When the immortal women and men realised that the mortal nations were ignorantly committed to the summoning of the Old Glass Gods, they resolved to destroy them before the rituals could be accomplished. They seeded all the worlds of that system with poisons, but human sciences had advanced since the separation of those races, and the mortal nations entombed themselves far beneath the earth to sleep the long ages until some prophesied time when their gods might be properly born into the cosmos."


Jigrim: When Albion first fell, the most devout of humankind refused to join their kin in the hibernation tombs at the base of the world and were slain by the Immortals' incredible curses, but those sleepless priests were so desperate to realise their god's advent that they persisted beyond the extinction of their flesh. Mess, Shell, Washer, Gyre and Trillion delved into the submerged arcology where one such enclave of committed souls had met their end, and there the phantom Jigrim found them, and began his ritual.

Virginia "Mess" Greyholt: The mother of the fragment godling Oedtyrdy, made pregnant by an inconceivably ancient spectre. She and her friends first attempted to exorcise the swiftly gestating infant, and when that failed they sought a way to prevent the waking of the people beneath the earth and the return of their old barbarities. Now the Reawakened are challenging Forbance and the uplanders for dominion on this grey continent, and Oedtyrdy is in their possession, and all the old sorceries of that degenerate race are flooding back into the world.

Eoin "Corky" Green: One of the frontier's most accomplished orthodox sorcerers. He learned from the mad priestess Mother Lark how to travel between dimensions, but so far he has only accessed the terrifying possible futures of his own contested planet.

Berthold "Trillion" Wing: The son of the brutal chieftain Red James, and one of the delinquents that discovered Jigrim and the sleepless priests. He was resurrected by Vloam the Dissenter, to aid in that renegade's fight against the other priests and forestall their acquisition of Oedtyrdy.

Mother Bee: A young priestess from Forbance. She has travelled to the frontier to minister to the Reawakened and prevent the dissemination of heretic sorceries.

Oedtyrdy: The daughter of Mess and the phantom Jigrim. According to Prolocutor Geoffrey, she is a fragment of Ort, the Old Glass God of Collisions. She projects her likeness into the dreams of the uplanders, who believe her to be, by turns, a demoness, and Christ returned.

Fabtamweoe: One of the prodigals who gave the secrets of true worship and of the Old Glass Gods to the original humans of Albion. She has consumed the unawakened bodies of the other prodigals, has assumed a role of spiritual leadership among the Reawakened, and has taken the preadolescent "god" Oedtyrdy as her charge. If she has realised the true implications of Oedtyrdy's ascension, it does not seem to have given her pause.

Imperfect Duplicate: One of five extradimensionals remaining in this system. He and his siblings were stirred from their long sleep by Oedtyrdy's natal cries. They, alongside the Immortals, are the uplanders' allies in their contest against the Reawakeed, but they can exist in realspace only briefly.

Chacssu: A gladiator in the cartilage gardens of Aungw a billion years ago, and now leader of the marauders that plague Forbance's frontier clans. His tunic is pinned with a dozen uplanders' tongues, like medals, and he wades into battle with a monstrous executioner's sword that is as long as he is tall (and he, like all the Reawakened, is very tall indeed).

Ndgamre: The only one of Fabtamweoe's many lovers to have awakened. He believes that the uplanders should be invited to join the Reawakened in their efforts to unite Oedtyrdy with the "Godhead", and has persuaded many of his peers to take a similarly diplomatic course (Chacssu and his marauders are an obvious and significant exception). He has shared some of Albion's original sorceries with the uplanders as a gesture of goodwill.

The Immortals: Angular confusions of glistening pink tissue and gesticulating bone. Their cities were hidden behind a space-contorting curtain that prevented egress and observation from either side, so they were blind to the events unfolding on Albion until Imperfect Duplicate led Mess, Shell, Washer, Gyre and Trillion through the Valley of Separations.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Pareidollhouse on May 09, 2018, 05:35:34 PM

Out of Character

Here's another setting kernel. All the player characters will be wives and concubines of a dying emperor, or of his sons.

THE SUBLIME EMPEROR AGSWEM CHOSOURTH II
...and all his elder sons have fallen in battle; deceived by the demoness Jossimberhethic, whom they summoned. His body writhes in slow liquefaction on the imperial bed, while his phantom slinks, ordurous and peripatetic, through these severe and emptied chambers where we wait out the long days until his body's self-destruction. ITEMS: the liminal spear, alacrity; the luminal diadem, severity; the supinal hound, autperga

SPLINTERED COCCELOMBE
...sits beside the doors to the privy chamber, which she has guarded through unnumbered dynasties with gene-bound impartiality. She cannot be persuaded to any alliance; nor can she be compelled, by martial arts or magics, to desert her post, or to surrender that flute which coaxes painted monsters from the palace walls to devour assassins and petitioners both.

IDSWEM & ORDSWEM & VORSIMMI & IUTSWALE & LOPEC & CHOSTER & AGVOSTER & WEIC
...and their armies, all sworn eternally to Agswem, their immortal father, were consumed by amberlight on the shores of Thridd; or were vivisected by Sikolume's centimanni; or were immured in the compressed labyrinths of the Intellector. With them we lost that convoluted but unambiguous line of primogeniture, in whose absence all the imperial mothers and their bastards and their bastards' wives connive toward accession.

Out of Character

It has been very quiet here - who will even read this? Well, I can't help my self, CBG, I love you  :cry:


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: Steerpike on May 10, 2018, 11:26:28 AM
I will read it. It's very good. I like the idea of living int the aftermath of a kind of enormous self-goal, so to speak. The flute is a really cool item.


Title: Re: A thing
Post by: LD on July 28, 2018, 07:53:52 PM

Quote

made pregnant by an inconceivably ancient spectre.
Anyone have any idea how that happened? :o