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Author Topic: Demongate: Wrapping up the Loose Ends.  (Read 680529 times)

Spear

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #600 on: April 14, 2014, 06:57:28 pm »

Jim-


     Ive been in demongate for about a week now, and ive realized behind the bustling and strong exterior of the fortress there is something else going on, im not sure what, I heard some strange noises come from some of the hallways, most others seem to not notice.. The paranoia here is disturbing, a few dwarfs were easily startled when I came from behind and just tapped their shoulder for directions, one I could swear was about to kill me with her war hammer..

     Many are quick to judge due to my age, and lack of experience, but I find it funny that once I talk they tend to stop in their tracks, my family raised me to act like a noble, then wondered why I hated working in the farms.. one place that I can relax though is the dinning room, and no one seems to care much for the good drinks, or the well cooked meals.. more for me I suppose..

I spend most of my time trying to fully understand this place, and find somewhere I can take charge and make a difference here.
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Gnorm

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #601 on: April 14, 2014, 08:33:25 pm »

Corley worked vigorously at his pen, writing in the enormous book with ferocity. He was completely aborbed in his writing, in putting to paper the secrets and the horrors that he had kept with him for so long. The movement of his cigarette-holder in his mouth shook ash onto his desk, awakening him from his trancelike state. He deposited his cigarette into a tray and put the holder in the drawer; he would be more easily recognized with it.

He heard a knock on his door, followed by a sweet female voice requesting entry. He could recognize it as Gnora's, for she had performed many tasks for him by this point. He called for her to enter, and the door was opened. She was carrying a wooden bucket in front of her waist in two hands. Corley turned to face her, leaving his tome open on his desk, and knew instantly what was kept in the bucket.

"I assume that you have my lye in that bucket," he said.

"Yes sir, Mister Joyce!" she said with a sense of satisfaction. Corley noticed that she had begun to glance at the open page of the book. As is true for many dwarves, Gnora had a basic knowledge of how to read, though it came slow to her. Corley watched as she began to silently mouth words to herself: ". . . the great monster . . . Fractalman . . . origin and purpose . . . still a total mystery. . . ."

"Is there something on your mind, my dear?" Corley interrupted.

"Sorry?—Oh! nothing Mister Joyce."

"Good, though I'm afraid that there is a change of plans regarding the lye: I no longer need it for myself."

"You don't?" Gnora questioned.

"No I do not," answered Corley.

Gnora began to walk out of the chamber, taking the bucket with her. He, Corley, quickly strode up to the door and shut it right in front of his face. She lost her balance for a moment, and had to struggle to keep from dumping the lye all over her body. She began to scream angrily at him for performing such a stunt, but something about the situation clouded Corley's hearing. Here he was, in a dark room with the young dwarf, incredibly thirsty. How long had it been since his last drink? Would anyone miss the girl? Probably, he reasoned; now was not the time.

"Gnora," he managed to say, "I fear that Tarmid has terrible plans for your farm."

"That can't be possible!" cried Gnora, "Tarmid's my friend. He'd tell me if he was going to do anything with it."

"There are many things he doesn't tell his "friend." In fact, there are things that he'd never tell you about his entire Order. For example, did you know that he has personally tortured the resident vampire several times over."

"You're lying!" cried Gnora. Corley raised his palm as if to slap her, and she quickly calmed down. The lower-class was practically programmed to fear retribution from the upper-crust.

"Everything I have said is true, and there are many more things that I will spare you the horror of knowing. But I have something for you to do with that lye: I want you to find Tarmid, and splash it in his face."

"Mister Joyce!" she gasped. Corley began to light his pipe nonchalantly; he expressed little concern over Gnora's discomfort.

"It would be most preferible to splash him whilst he's taking a bath, so that the lye will react."

"He'll be blinded! or worse!"

"For a good cause!" said Corley with sudden anger, "What price are you willing to pay to save your farm? To save your lifestyle? Your people? Your fortress? Tarmid is dangerous and seditious, and he needs to be eliminated. Now, I ask you: are you willing to do this!"

Gnora forced open the door and ran out of the room, crying with fright. Corley noticed, with a grin, that she had taken the bucket with her.
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And we were this close to yet another victim of Gnorm, the Overseer Killer.

danmanthedog

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #602 on: April 14, 2014, 09:06:22 pm »

"What to do about that animal spell?" *Suddenly a crying dwarf holding a bucket come zooming past* What in earthen gods name was that ab.... WAIT that was Gnora, Oh no something must have happen I have to *Hack Hack HACK* what happened!
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MDFification

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #603 on: April 14, 2014, 09:22:13 pm »

Everyone is crazy except Vlad: The Musical
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Gnorm

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #604 on: April 14, 2014, 09:24:59 pm »

Everyone is crazy except Vlad: The Musical
Make this!
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Rhaken

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #605 on: April 14, 2014, 09:43:01 pm »

Everyone is crazy except Vlad: The Musical

I nominate this for the quotes list.

Now back to writing.
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Of course, he may have simply crushed the forgotten beasts with his massive testicles.

Forget a spouse, he needs a full time gonad wrangler.

Gnorm

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #606 on: April 14, 2014, 09:44:28 pm »

Everyone is crazy except Vlad: The Musical

I nominate this for the quotes list.

Now back to writing.
When is the next update?
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jrrocks05

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #607 on: April 14, 2014, 09:45:46 pm »

Hey Thanatos is sane or is he? I mean it's not like I am a mentally insane bloodkin hating maniac. I'm n(sob sob sob) die bloodkin dieeeeee( the musical
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We fear not to walk in the valley of death for we are the baddest most vicious unforgiving motherf---en dwarves in this valley

MDFification

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #608 on: April 14, 2014, 09:47:32 pm »

Hey Thanatos is sane or is he? I mean it's not like I am a mentally insane bloodkin hating maniac. I'm n(sob sob sob) die bloodkin dieeeeee( the musical

I filed Thanatos under "obsessed with ultra-violent revenge".

Also I look forward to Tarmid seeing the bucket full of lye thing comming and just verbally pimp-slapping Gnora so hard she winds up at 'evening prayers'.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2014, 09:49:54 pm by MDFification »
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Rhaken

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #609 on: April 14, 2014, 09:51:31 pm »

Everyone is crazy except Vlad: The Musical

I nominate this for the quotes list.

Now back to writing.
When is the next update?

Probably within an hour. Don't put money on it though. I'm getting burned out.

Also, I just checked Legends mode out of curiosity. Thanatos is a widower. His wife died in 614, killed by a minotaur.
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Of course, he may have simply crushed the forgotten beasts with his massive testicles.

Forget a spouse, he needs a full time gonad wrangler.

Gnorm

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #610 on: April 14, 2014, 09:57:26 pm »

Hey Thanatos is sane or is he? I mean it's not like I am a mentally insane bloodkin hating maniac. I'm n(sob sob sob) die bloodkin dieeeeee( the musical

I filed Thanatos under "obsessed with ultra-violent revenge".

Also I look forward to Tarmid seeing the bucket full of lye thing comming and just verbally pimp-slapping Gnora so hard she winds up at 'evening prayers'.
Tarmid just seems like the kind of dwarf that would be the master of the "verbal pimp-slap."
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CaptainArchmage

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #611 on: April 14, 2014, 10:12:33 pm »

Alright, has my dwarf arrived in Demongate yet? This place seems to be hiding some....... disturbing secrets.
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Rhaken

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #612 on: April 14, 2014, 10:15:57 pm »

Alright, has my dwarf arrived in Demongate yet? This place seems to be hiding some....... disturbing secrets.

Arrived last year, worked, died already. Goblin ambush. He managed to shoot one in the throat before his own lungs got crushed.

Might wanna get yourself a new dwarf there. :-\
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Of course, he may have simply crushed the forgotten beasts with his massive testicles.

Forget a spouse, he needs a full time gonad wrangler.

CaptainArchmage

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Re: Demongate: Battling Blood
« Reply #613 on: April 14, 2014, 10:31:40 pm »

Alright, has my dwarf arrived in Demongate yet? This place seems to be hiding some....... disturbing secrets.

Arrived last year, worked, died already. Goblin ambush. He managed to shoot one in the throat before his own lungs got crushed.

Might wanna get yourself a new dwarf there. :-\

Damnit. I need to re-use the backstory somehow, scouting dwarves or body doubles. More mentally-unstable dwarves would really help. Did this even get covered or was it just “in other news” thanks to everything that happened?

If this is the kind of fortress where dwarves getting crushed is “in other news”, that’s pretty bad.

Edit: I checked. It was Uvash, right? I don’t think the incident has been reported on, but I get he was a siege engineer.

Damnit, if nitwits actually start claiming to be “wizards” our cover’s going to be blown!

Edit2: Is the mayor claimed? Do we even have a mayor at the moment?
« Last Edit: April 14, 2014, 10:40:50 pm by CaptainArchmage »
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Rhaken

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Re: Demongate: There Are No Heroes
« Reply #614 on: April 14, 2014, 11:51:59 pm »

Weeks had gone by since the hydra Ak Mutulu attacked Demongate, and things were slowly turning back to a state of relative peace and quiet. Vlad's Vultures were once again occupying their spare time with card games and hooch. Kadol avoided any such distractions in favor of training to fight with shield and sword both in his one remaining hand. It demanded awkward movement at first, but by the time he was used to it he was sparring with the best of them and giving them a run for their money.

Thane's squaddies still showed up at the barracks every once in a while for basic drills, though Thane's own attendance record during these drills was less than stellar. When she did show up, she was, in Vlad's own professional opinion, halfway to passed-out drunk. She paid little attention to instructions and outright refused to spar. The Knights, meanwhile, trained for upwards of eight hours a day, stopping only to eat or to study with Brenzen or Tarmid, when the scribe was available.

In the hours before dawn, as most dwarves slept, a scout rang the alarm. Goblins had been spotted in the fields, hiding in the tall grasses, perfectly concealed until a wandering horse bumped into the group and ran off terrified. The goblins rose then, giving chase to the horse. The wild stallion had inadvertently bought time for Demongate's armed forces to scramble out of bed and form up. By the time the goblins had turned their attention to the barracks entrance, Brenzen's knights had formed up, along with most of the Vultures. Vlad himself was curiously absent.

The goblins approached the trap funnel. A first volley from the towers injured many, and the traps outright slew half of them. The Knights and Vultures moved in to mop up the injured. The entire goblin squad died before they could even swing their weapons.

Another alarm. Another squad of goblins, spotted by the hills. An overeager Vulture sprinted toward them, a foolish action that would have provoked disciplinary measures from Vlad if he had seen it. The remaining soldiers called him back, but he acted deaf. They saw no choice but to go after him and try to keep the glory-seeking idiot alive.

The marksdwarves moved to the other tower. Tarmid had comissioned a second tower across from the first, to ensure that covering fire could come from either direction. They managed to get into position and fire after the infantry had engaged the goblins. Though many of them carried iron swords, they were unable to cut through the finely-shaped bismuth bronze armor of Demongate's forces. The enemy fell under a hail of blows and bolts, the dwarves escaping the skirmish with nothing more than a few nicks and bruises.

They headed back inside to resume their rest. Only to be disturbed again, at the crack of dawn, by yet another alarm.

The humans had come to trade. And with them came another ambush. Vlad's grumpy Vultures made for their weapons and prepared to march out. Brenzen's Knights were already in armor. Kadol was beginning to suspect they slept in it.

Three of the goblin spearmen were down by the time the dwarves arrived, though one of the human caravan guards had a gaping hole in his leg for his troubles. Joining forces, the dwarves and humans routed the enemy in moments, then stayed around until the wagons had made it to the depot. The longshanks saluted, then followed their charges inside. The bridge closed behind them minutes afterwards, and Demongate's soldiers headed back inside, ready to take wagers on how many merchants the Fractal Dwarf would manage to confuse before closing the deal.

It was later that day that a hunter found the body. A dwarf who had called himself Captain, slain the previous night during a hunting trip, chest caved inwards, three limbs broken. Nearby, a goblin lay in the grass, lifeless, a bolt jutting from her throat.




Dantheman was in Tarmid's office, asking for materials for some spell of his again. Tarmid listened to every word, his expression carefully neutral the whole time. When the hunter was finished, Tarmid rose from his seat, walked in front of him. His normally soft cobalt eyes hardened into knives, though his face remained impassive.

"Listen here, Dan," the scribe said in an even tone, "I thought I made it clear last time that your talk of magic is not welcome here. Regardless of how 'harmless' it may or may not be, I must remind you - again - that magic, or thaumaturgy, is illegal throughout the dwarven realms -" pause for effect- "And punishable by death.

"Now, regardless of my opinion on the subject, I am a Scribe of St. Zane, sworn to, among numerous other things, to uphold the law. This includes reporting any crimes I witness, or mandating the arrest myself if it is in my power to do so. Do you understand what I'm getting at here?"

Tarmid sighed, sensing incomprehension. Dantheman was no idiot, but he wasn't the most attentive of dwarves either. The hunter would be more discreet if he understood the consequences of his babbling.

"I'll be blunt then." Tarmid put on a deep scowl, shifted to a booming voice of command. "If you ever mention your magic again, or try to 'procure materials', or act suspicious on my watch again-" another pause for effect- "I am placing you under arrest for conspiracy and suspicion of thaumaturgy. Which, if you are indeed innocent of, you will not mention again. Do I make myself clear?"

Dantheman seemed to shrink before the scribe, though Tarmid could tell this dwarf was thinking of ways to continue whatever he did in secret. Perhaps even a bit of spite towards Tarmid. "Look, this is not personal. But it will be necessary if you keep this up. Your behavior upsets the other dwarves. If I have to fling you in a cell to keep them from forming an angry mob to hunt you down, so be it."

Once that matter was settled, The scribe escorted Dantheman outside and returned to his desk. He was making progress with the Steelhold documents, though no mention of a Joyce yet. The vampire situation was moving forward as well, though not as quick as he would like. Tarmid decided to take a short break to sate his curiosity on the matter of St. Rhaken's bridge defense system. He retrieved his copy of Recovered Correspondence of Steelhold from its shelf, set it down on his desk. Before he could begin to read, another knock on his office door.

An overseer's work is never done.


"Who is it?"

"It's Gnora," said the farm-girl through the door. She sounded nervous. "Can I come in?"

"Certainly, Gnora. One moment."

Tarmid opened the door. Gnora had a bucket in hand. The powerful odor of lye entered his nostrils. Before he could motion her inside, Gnora pulled the bucket back.

Tarmid slammed the door in her face.

A yelp of pain, followed by the bucket crashing to the stone floor. Tarmid opened the door again to find Gnora sitting on her rear, a puddle of lye beside her on the floor. Luckily, none of it had touched her skin directly. Her clothes would be ruined though.

Tarmid sighed, pulled the farmgirl to her feet.
"Gnora. What in Armok's name are you doing?"

"I'm sorry, Tarmid," she said, groggy and almost sobbing. "But Joyce said you were going to destroy the farm-"

"And you believed him?"

"H-he said I had to stop you, throw lye in your face to keep you from doing it..."

The scribe frowned, pulled her into his office. He sat her down on the same chair where Dantheman had sat minutes before, preparing to scold her like one of his students. "Gnora, think for a second. Why in the world would I want to destroy our source of food and drink?"

"But..." She was tearing up. Tarmid had seen many students do the same when caught red-handed. Unlike his students, however, Gnora wasn't faking it for sympathy.

"But?"

"But Joyce said you lied to me. And that you tortured that vampire that got arrested."

Tarmid sighed again. "Very well. First of all, I suggest you get out of those clothes before the lye gets to your skin." He moved to an armor stand in the corner of the office, took out a spare, midnight-blue robe with well-worn elbows and handed it to Gnora. He turned around out of respect, but between her and the door, and out of arm's reach. If she tried anything, she would be the first to see Tarmid's knife training in action. Though he suspected that Gnora wouldn't try anything stupid at this point.

Once she was dressed in a robe one size too large for her, Tarmid resumed the conversation.


"First of all, I did not lie to you. I have no reason whatsoever to destroy the farms, and I am frankly shocked you would suggest that. It makes no sense, and you know me better than that. The fact that you would go through with this at the request of some foreign noble baffles me. Don't you find it at least a little odd that Joyce would ask for this out of nowhere?"

Gnora seemed to have recovered her lucidity, and she listened to Tarmid's every word before replying.

"Well, he does act a little strange sometimes. He was writing something or other about the broker when I went to see him. But I think he means well."

"He means well in trying to harm the dwarf who is currently overseeing Demongate?"

Gnora's shoulders slumped.

"Look, Gnora," Tarmid said, gently patting her arm, "I know you only want what's best for everyone. But doing what is right is thinking about your every action. Did Joyce offer any conclusive proof that I deserve a bucketful of lye in the face?"

"No," she answered, shrinking inwards.

"Did you find any such proof yourself?"

"No."

"Then why did you do what he said?"

"I don't know," she said, apologetic.

Tarmid sighed. "See the problem here?"

"I'm sorry, Tarmid," Gnora muttered.

"Apology accepted. Now, help me clean up the lye."

Sometime later, when the puddle of lye was vanquished from the corridor, Gnora turned to Tarmid, a questing look on her face.

"Did you really torture that vampire?"

Tarmid sensed a trap, but took the bait anyway. Maybe this was an opportunity to make Gnora understand.

"Yes."

She gasped in surprise, retreated a step away, as if Tarmid was unclean. "Why would you do that? I thought you were a good person!"

"That is not for me to decide," Tarmid answered, not exactly eager to debate morality with her. "You pose a good question though. Why do you think I did it?"

Gnora paused to think. "You hate vampires," she offered.

"Incorrect. I don't exactly like them, but I have no irrational urge to see them all dead."

Gnora hummed in assent, went back to her mental drawing board. "Your higher-ups ordered you to do it?"

"Close, but not quite," Tarmid stated. "I have orders to capture and interrogate, but not necessarily torture."

"Then why did you do it?" Gnora grimaced.

"Think about what I said before. About considering your every action." Tarmid used his practiced professor's voice, as if explaining to a struggling student. "What reason could I have for considering torture the best course of action?"

Gnora took a minute to run the options through her head. Many scenarios came to mind, though some were too outlandish to consider. Then, just like that, she had the answer. Any sense of accomplishment at being correct vanished before she could enjoy it. Her gaze turned to the floor.

"Because a creature that is centuries old will lie about anything if it doesn't somehow feel threatened."

Tarmid gave her a sad smile. "I'm afraid you are correct, Gnora."



Hours later, eyes beginning to sting, Tarmid turned yet another page in the book of correspondence. It was an ancient copy, made years before the invention of back indexing, so the scribe had to dig through the letters manually. He let out the occasional mumble and grumble about nobles and their ludicrous gossiping about a fortress half a continent away.

At long last, he found the one he was looking for. A letter addressed to nobody in particular, describing the architecture and defensive systems of Steelhold in the year 260 Old Era. It did indeed mention trapped archways over the entrance, which a previous letter from a different nobleman had mentioned some three or four years earlier, which coincided with St. Rhaken's supposed stewardship of the ancient fortress.

Satisfied, he moved to close the book, but something caught his eye. At the bottom of the page was the name of the letter's writer. It made Tarmid's blood turn to ice in his veins.

James Joyce, Esq.
Logged
Of course, he may have simply crushed the forgotten beasts with his massive testicles.

Forget a spouse, he needs a full time gonad wrangler.
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