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About desolate

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  • Birthday 12/09/1988

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  1. I, Henrietta

    It worked? It worked! Of course it worked. Noel fetched a plaid handkerchief from his back pocket and dabbed away the perspiration that had gathered on his face. Nothing quite like a successful binding rite to herald his return to society. And no moralising? Why, he liked his companions better already! Or maybe they thought it was still Andes. It was all the same to him. "Honored child of Gaia." Noel nudged the severed hand out of sight with his foot, but kept the thorn in his arm as a precaution; he could feel the small wound throb. "Answer our questions and I will have your anchor to this world transplanted to a garden of your choice to live and thrive, and you will be free to... do you. For a lot longer than if we leave you here." No concerned was spared for the man that was. Kidnapper at best, terrorist at worst; Andes could stay possessed. He glanced at Sabiya. Her questions about covered what he wanted to know, except for a few small pieces. "What are the kidnappers' plans for the girl? If they're going to ransom her, I would rather go to the bank than give chase." Noel glanced at Tancred and lingered on his reloaded firearm. "Is anyone currently still inside the Foundation a part of the kidnapping?"
  2. New Challenger Approaches

    Nothing wrong with doing it in RP. Look forward to seeing you around the site!
  3. Newbie Needing Help

    Hi HiddenSecrets. Hope you slept well. If Velinquish's super cool reply left any unanswered questions, please let us know!
  4. All, I have made the announcements forum read-only. The purpose of this forum is primarily for us to deliver information about site updates to the community at large. While I appreciate the bug reports and feedback we've received to date, there are more productive channels for both bug reports (Help, private messages) and feedback (Free Chat topics, private messages). Please continue to use those channels. Regards, Damon
  5. I, Henrietta

    A gun shot, a motorcycle roaring into existence, a cage of thorns—it was too much for him to follow, even had he not arrived behind everyone else. Noel nearly walked into Tancred as the man skillfully dodged what would have spelled certain doom had their roles been reversed, murmuring a soft, "Very impressive, pardon me." before he continued on his way around the hastily conjured bramble patch, never picking up the pace or matching the others' determined alacrity. After assessing the expansive garage from a more insightful angle, Noel took inventory: vehicles with no destination, various objects of dubious usefulness, a severed hand, a wand, a broken man who he feared an impatient Sabiya might beat to death for all her subtlety of a berserk hippo, and yeah, he should address that now before it was too late. "Do you all mind letting the poor man live for the next few minutes? Thank you," he said and collected the hand and wand, fire extinguisher since abandoned. Using the box cutter, he removed thorns from the outside of the magically summoned cage, silently stuck one in his arm—the same arm Andes was missing a hand from—and stuck one in the severed hand, leaving one left over. A dim red light connected the two thorns, but not the third. Noel plucked a leaf from the branch and ate it, leaving one left over. A dim red light connected him to the wand, and to the living cage close by. Properly aligned to him, the wand functioned as an antenna for nature spirits. Given the thorns along with the pain he channeled, it was likely not going to be a nude thicket of sexy dryadesses, or preferably dryadudes, but it was best not the let the mind wander lest one wanted to contaminate the conjuration. Its mana was siphoned into partitions—the thorns rooted the physicality of the spell into its pre-existing form, the cage growing larger as the remaining charges were expended, leaving Noel to tend to the abstract elements without fear of concrete blow-back, such as vines erupting from his stomach; consuming the leaf allowed the spell to treat him as part of the wand, safe and sound like any similar spell-casting apparatus. "Gaia," Noel entreated. "Man creates Life with callous disregard for Her prosperity. He breaks the cycle of Wyld and Wyrm, as though He were Weaver Herself. Such arrogance demands recompense. Life is not a means to another's end." He snapped the wand in a violent crimson flash. Burning halves found themselves splintered against opposite walls. "I say let He who fashions Himself Master become the Means, and the Means become the Master!" Noel flicked the last thorn. Real space hardly mattered when the Laws were truly satisfied. Regardless of distance, the thorn, the spell, would find the hand's owner and pierce him, and so with it, the vengeful spirits of nature he called out to would likewise penetrate Andes, but not his body, no, that was merely the vessel Gaia gave him—what required penance was deeper, as far down as Humanity went before losing itself to darkness. It couldn't have been pleasant. Noel dropped the hand to sever the connection, rather preferring not to have his psyche violated by the possession event's aftershocks. At least Andes wouldn't die before he could explain himself. Not until the bramble cage, now thrice as large, expended its full duration, an expiration date the spirit would want to cooperate in increasing. Not that Andes would be the one doing the explaining, not really. Not that Noel was any better than the Menace, a voice in the corner of his mind whispered.
  6. Hell's Gate [civil war]

    Since I'm currently indisposed and hurrican't post, on top of it not being my turn, if it helps obviate any reason for the party to linger since following a bunch of foam isn't an immediately obvious solution to their current problem, some minor autoing of Noel might be appropriate, such as him pointing out his "minions" have a lead.
  7. OOC: Grey Gateway

    I may not be able to post for a while. Post hurricane impact and all.
  8. AFV - I am Quitting and Why

    If you're going to quit, then quit. Creating a spectacle under the pretense of leaving and taking potshots on your way out the door is in poor taste. Either go now that you've said your goodbyes, or admit you can't leave us alone and go back to roleplaying. But if you're lured back to the website by the thrill of impugning others' reputations through hearsay and gossip as demonstrated here, please don't bother. Best regards.
  9. I, Henrietta

    Explosions ahead ruined his hypothesis that the bombs were in the posterior direction. Thankfully, he was nowhere near Sabiya, nor Tancred, neither of whom had shown any sign of waiting for him to catch up. At the first boom, he stopped, but didn't duck for cover; if there was any overpressure, he was dead anyway. Only dust and heat hit him, causing his skin to flush and making him wish he brought eye drops. It didn't seem like any of them were on fire, so he wasn't in any rush to go spray them with his fire extinguisher. Instead, he called out, "Hello? Everyone alive?" There was pause enough in their advance that now he could catch up. "Hi. Noel again," he greeted. "I have no idea who any of you are, but could you please not blow up? My family has a reputation to uphold." He could see the headlines now: TRASIMENE LETS RESCUERS DIE ON MISSION—COINCIDENCE? If neither of them were good to go, there wasn't much he could do about it... mostly because he didn't want to. Summon a spirit of life? Here? In the demesne of artificiality? In a vacuum of the natural order? It would take him all night, and he wasn't willing to pay the price of contact either. Tancred, at least, seemed able to go on. And on they went. To a hole in the wall. There was no way it was an exploding trap. Or the glimmering little whatsit to their left. "I don't know about anyone else; I'm not rushing through there." First, Noel sprayed the hole and covered it in foam. From maximum range, of course. Then, he sprayed the glimmering bit with foam. "Gaia compels—flee the Wyrm," he muttered. Any explosive magic, flammable material, or anything within the opposing elements' purview moved, shunted away. In fact, clumps of weakly spiritually-active, slug-like foam would chase after it. Were there nothing, Noel investigated the shiny...
  10. Hell's Gate [civil war]

    I will shoot for Friday. It's a rough week.
  11. The Grey Gateway [Taen & Yh'mi Worldrift Event, Part 1]

    Previously... Viorica found a relatively safe spot to place a brass brazier, into which went charcoal, several herbs, and lighted incense. She spent roughly an hour murmuring the spidery words of some foreign language, occasionally gesturing and re-positioning, until the small flame went out. A portion of her aura, invisible as all auras tended to be, agglomerated into tiny motes of light that condensed and—poof!—where there had been light, there was now owl. After the Find Familiar ritual succeeded, she dumped the brazier (along with her respect for nature), packed it up with the rest of her belongings and moved out. A wordless command had the owl familiar flying within 100 feet of her, a quick mental message away from alerting her to any danger—which she avoided when could, and Ray of Frosted when she couldn't, until she and her plus one arrived fashionably late enough to hear Ezekiel suggest they leave her behind. "Best case scenario. Viorica Beroul has arrived." She curtsied; the owl perched and hooted. Based on what she was saw, she was either overdressed (One of them isn't wearing skin...), or under-dressed (I should buy armor...). Dark brown traveling leathers, or the hobo-tier gear of newbie adventurers, would never accomplish a grand first impression and, in her opinion, only made her look 10 lbs heavier. Ultimately, Patricia caught most of her attention. "Who are we praying to? Is God up there?" Viorica pointed at the silver portal.
  12. I, Henrietta

    Now the lights came on. Very helpful. Noel preserved battery power by putting the crystal back to sleep, and reattached the key-ring to a belt loop. Henrietta's attempt to illuminate the situation made it worse. He had no idea what a "logic bomb" was, or that those two words even went together. From his perspective, it sounded like they had a traditional bomb of the exploding variety. Terrorists were a lot more lethal than thieves. It didn't seem like Sabiya and Tancred—his two unknown "followers," as it were—cared about being blown to bits. Both of them ran off ahead, promptly ignoring Yuan. Noel didn't go anywhere. "Hi You-anne. Is that how it's pronounced? My name is Noel." He pointed after Sabiya and Tancred. "Is that east, or are they guessing?" Noel hadn't seen anyone pull out a compass, or look around much at all. He squinted through the yellow haze to read the signage on both exits. From what he could tell, one went in and one went out. It didn't make sense for terrorists to go back in to the Monroe Foundation. Towards, you know, the bomb. "I'll catch up," he said to no one in particular. After he found and acquired the nearest fire extinguisher and a box cutter for good measure, Noel headed toward the out-leading hallway where everyone else had gone, assuming that was in fact the mysterious east. Since no one had exploded yet, he wasn't concerned with scary things like tripwires. It might have been because it was a bonus of being last or next-to-last, or because the bomb he was imagining was a remote-controlled one. Briefly, he considered if he had improved enough over the past year to convince a bomb to not explode. What could a bomb possibly want? There were abandoning buildings in need of a good demolishing all over Hell's Gate. Why settle for blowing up the dinky Monroe Foundation? He supposed being known as the spirit that exploded a national treasure might be hard to compete with sheer volume, but explosions weren't known for their intelligence. It wouldn't like the fire extinguisher. Ritual sacrifice? What would his "companions" think of that? Noel remembered his last companions' faces when he summoned those octopuses—if that's what they could be called. Instead of doing anything productive during his time catching up, he thought up a plausible contract, and a palatable way to seal the deal, for the spirit of a bomb that didn't actually exist, all because Henrietta wanted to sound smart.
  13. I, Henrietta

    He should known that it was his feathers that were going to get ruffled. His cool exterior cracked when Henrietta said second in line. Noel thought he had already coped with his older brother's death, but her words were an unintentional object lesson in grief that felt like a punch in the gut, and it showed in his strained smile. At least no one could see his fists clench under the cloak. Despite her flippancy, Noel appreciated the answer that followed, and he had a hard time staying angry at a young woman whose laughter would turn away any suitors who might have otherwise overlooked that tree-bark she called a face. Maybe later he could chat someone at the Foundation up about those flawless bindings for his studies on possession. He sank into the middle of the group as they toured onward, dragging his feet all the way into the dome. Victory. A premature name and a worrying concept. Noel couldn't deny that it was remarkable, nor that the Gaian Orthodoxy was right to err on the side of caution. Henrietta seemed to have many of the qualities his mother ascribed to the Monroe line, like an emphasis on progress to the exclusion of morals; and he, for one, did not want a Monroe plugged into the preeminent source of modern knowledge. No doubt she had a litany of justifications and rebuttals prepared, until the lights went out on her chance. When the tourists dropped, Noel wasn't happy about becoming a makeshift bed. It began with someone grabbing him in a vain attempt to regain balance, then another actually falling on him, and before Noel knew what was happening, he was on the cold, hard floor under a few sleepy-heads. He let out an, "Ow!" when a security guard stepped on him on the way to Henrietta. Once the initial danger evaporated, Noel squirmed out from under his temporary bunk-mates and rose up in as dignified a manner as possible—hard to do when he had to turn his head away and pull someone else's hair out of his mouth. Noel was trapped. He was obviously a prime suspect. Corporate espionage, kidnapping, and several counts of assault with a controlled substance... not to mention the last "kidnapping" he was involved in had opened his eyes to far more than he was prepared to know. Just the thought of it hitched his breath. The only comfort was there was an out. If he helped Henrietta, then his name was cleared, the lawyers and public relations weren't needed, and the only consequence was knowing whether this was the same. House Trasimene and the Monroe Foundation could settle debts over the rescue attempt later. Time to act. Who knew when the finger-pointing would start? At the hole, Noel pulled out a key-ring, on which there was only one item of note besides keys: a small crystal ball that hung from its own chain and lit up after a thumb-press. A page from the text Magical Malpractice projected from the device, blurry and tinted by the yellow warning lights. He clipped the key-ring to his clasp, and stroked the crystal ball between his thumb and index finger to rotate the angle of projection, and illuminated metal bars across the ceiling of the room below. Since he couldn't see it, the floor wasn't close enough for him to jump. Noel glanced at Henrietta, sat down at the edge of the hole to scoot down onto the nearest bar, and muttered, "Just a glorified jungle gym." His descent, however, was not glorious; he inched across the bars, found a pipe or duct of some kind to crawl on, rolled off onto a pile of boxes at the top of a shelf, and climbed down to the factory floor at long last, knocking over all sorts of things, some fragile. Once he was down there, he unhooked the key-ring and checked his immediate surroundings with the projected image.
  14. I, Henrietta

    Noel wanted Henrietta to know who he was. He was dressed in a garish red cloak that had caused him to be thoroughly searched before the tour. A three-pronged piece of silver clasped his cloak; it resembled the pincers and tail of a scorpion, a symbol of the shamans at House Trasimene. The Monroe Foundation was an economic rival, and he wanted to get to know one of their competitors. Fetishes had already been phased out of several markets due to advances in engineering, advances Trasimene lobbyists usually opposed. Their feud was older than he was; Noel had grown up hearing his mother's rants about Useless Eustace, the Monroe prodigy of the previous generation. He wondered what she called Henrietta... More like a Comedietta, he imagined her saying. Golems were particularly problematic to him. A construct created in the image of man to perform man's work—or to usurp it. Given the Law of Parallel Symbolism, how long would it be before like produced like? There had already been one such incident. Nevertheless, opposing golems on a legislative level was futile. Golems were rooted in Gaian tradition, and propaganda that questioned one's faith tended to be an effective tool for the ambitious and industrious. Granted, the propagandists were on both sides. Golems were easier to possess than laborers, especially the rudimentary ones. You wouldn't want to give a merciless undead creature an avenue of slaughter to destroy your poor children's future, would you? Omitted from marketing materials: undead creatures don't want to be golems. When he inherited the family assets, Noel questioned whether he had the stomach for such an intense level of advertising and competition. During the presentation, Noel stood up front in center and stared at Henrietta. After he had talked himself into leaving the house for the first time in a year, he had practiced not blinking just for this occasion. Now he wanted to see his return on investment in awkward... but the more he stared, the more he wanted to offer her some lotion. Whenever it seemed like their sight lines crossed, he smiled. For the most part, it was authentic. There was a certain amount of sense to what Henrietta said; as far as he could tell, the Monroe Foundation was genuine in its desire to spread prosperity. A teaching initiative—government contracts aside—was a compassionate use of resources, even if he thought what the people needed were role models and not literal models built in a Monroe basement. Before they reached the climax of their learned journey, it was question time. Noel flung his right hand up in the air. "Hi Henrietta. What model of golem was used in the Biazo Incident?" he asked. The Biazo Incident was a tragic event that happened a handful of years ago; it involved binding people, who had been killed in a disaster, to golems in an attempt to save them. Noel didn't consider it a mark against them like some might, but it wasn't exactly a tactful question to pose in mixed company. Tactics over tact, he could practically hear his mother's approval.