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Monday, 13th October, 2003, 03:46 PM #61Originally Posted by mythago
i love this game
- EN World
- has no influence
- on adverts that
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Monday, 13th October, 2003, 04:03 PM #62
Gallant (Lvl 3)
Forget what this post said before, I just found my pics. Ooooh, interesting.
Last edited by Macbeth; Monday, 13th October, 2003 at 04:04 PM.
Be bloody, bold, and resolute! Laugh to scorn The pow'r of man, for none of woman born Shall harm Macbeth
Avatar by Sialia
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 04:12 PM #63
Congradulations Mythago!!! It's good to see an adventure win, we don't see them often in Ceramic DM. Good luck to you sir.
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 04:15 PM #64
A 1e title so awesome it's not in the book (Lvl 21)
Ma'am.Originally Posted by Taladas
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 04:30 PM #65
oops. Sorry about that
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 04:58 PM #66
No worries. Besides, I'm not sure we horrors from beyond space and time technically have gender.Originally Posted by Taladas
When God hands you a gift, he also hands you a whip; and the whip is intended for self-flagellation solely. (Truman Capote)
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 06:41 PM #67
class, class, class. we have only really had one problem in all of these. good folks...Originally Posted by Taladas
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 07:48 PM #68
Scout (Lvl 6)
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 07:57 PM #69
Gallant (Lvl 3)
I wanted to get mine done before I start studying for Midterms tonight, so here's what I got:
The young man, obviously out of place with his light features bound up in middle eastern garb, took a quick glance over the low wall separating us from the Venmon and turned back to me.
"Looks like they still have us pinned down. I guess we don't really have any choice but to wait them out." A flurry of bullets fly past his head as he drops back to the ground, and, as if to prove that nothing ever works out for me, not a single bullet hits him.
Just my luck. Not only am I pinned down by the South Pacific's equivalent of the mafia, but I can look forward to spending my time with Mister Super Spy himself, Richard Gavin. Only a bonafide Superpsy would expect an outfit that could have come from "Hammas 'R Us" to blend in IN THE SOUTH PACIFIC. Leave it to the CIA's 'best' to be the only person in the history of the planet to stand out more when in disguise. If there's anything this little chain of events has taught me, its that anybody audacious enough to call himself a Super Spy isn't much of a spy. You know, I really should have expected this from the beginning...
Never cross the mafia. Any mafia. Not the Italians, the Russians, the Chinese, not any of them. Especially not the Venmon. The venmon are, for lack of abetter title, the mafia of the South Pacific. They run just about everything down there. I assumed that since I had barely heard of them they couldn't be much trouble, so I broke my own rule, and crossed the mafia. It wasn't a blatant slap in the face, just a little business of the side. With the number of islands the Venmon control I thought they would take little notice if I took up hiding on Taku Rikiki, just until the heat wore off.
And that statement brings us to the inevitable question: what heat? To make a long story short, I crossed the Russian mafia first, by pulling a jewel heist in St. Petersburg without their permission. The heist went fairly well, until I learned what Napoleon and Hitler learned: never attack the Russians on their home turf. The Russians in America are nasty, but the Russians in Russia seem like they still have a grudge about that whole freeing the serfs shtick, and their willing to take out their aggression on just about anybody and anything. So, with a pack of gorilla-sized Russian men chasing me, I fled the country, and found my other problem: I'm not exactly welcome in any major country, or even any minor counties, for that matter. After the heist in the U.S., the murder in England, the drug deal in Canada, the smuggling in France, the shaving cream incident in Germany, and too many other run-ins with the law to mention, my list of countries to escape to had been narrowed down to a number of small South Pacific islands. I knew of the Venmon, and I knew that because of their ties to the Russians they wouldn't be exactly happy to see me, but I needed a place to lie low, so I broke my own rule an crossed the mafia.
Maybe it was my choice of villages that screwed me over in the end. Taku Rikiki, the island I had chosen as the least likely to attract the Venmon, had only one village, and when it comes down to it the village is really the entire island. Most of the buildings are thatched, with only a couple of modern buildings, a warehouse and a small fish processing plant, mixed in. In a community that small, word travels fast, so by the time I reached the end of the dock the village elder had come to see me.
"Welcome, sir, may I ask what brings you here?"
The old man really freaked me out. He had a dull grey... something... where his left eye should have been, and skin that showed this man had really lived. He had a bright yellow head band, probably some kind of honor bestowed on him.
"...Business, I have a...investor who is interested in the fish produced here, and so I've come to take a look." A total lie, but a believable one.
"Really? I would expect that we would have heard something about this."
"Well... it's a surprise visit, of course, if you knew I was coming I wouldn't get a real impression of what your factory is like."
"Ahhh, I see the wisdom in your choice. Fine, make yourself at home, there is a small cottage further inland that you can use. I hope your stay here is enjoyable."
And with that the old man turned around and left. I didn't like him already. Anybody who accepts a surprise inspection with that kind of grace knows something that I don't, putting me at a disadvantage. But I had no choice, the boatman had already left, and from the looks of the boats moored around the island I only had two choices of destinations in thee local boats: the fishing area, or the bottom of the ocean, and I'm no fisherman.
So I made my way to the hut the elder directed me to. It was a nice place, as thatched cottages go, and I made myself as "at home" as I could get without a TV, computer, or telephone. It wasn't nice, but it would work. I thought I had found myself a safe place to lie low, but no such luck.
The next day I set about getting acquainted with my new home, and came across a man who's ignorance knows no bounds, Richard Gavin. Actually, to be more accurate, Gavin found me. As I said before, word travels fast on Taku Rikiki, and I was awoken at the ungodly hour of 10:00 AM by a white man, obviously trying to be covert and failing miserably.
When he noticed I had woken up he let out a low whisper: "Look, I know this seems odd, but I need to know who you are and what your doing here."
I'm not a morning person, and the last time I heard the questions "who are you?" and "What are you doing here?" I was waking up naked with a headache and a hangover. After a few moments composing myself I gathered enough of my wits to realize that this man was far from inconspicuous. The standard dress in the South Pacific is quite minimal, with lots of bright colors. This man was straight out of the middle east. Several layers of draped cloth and a long bandana told me that this man was either trying to do his best to blend into a foreign area without any idea of how "foreign people" dress, or a complete idiot. Or Both.
"Well, hows about you explain who you are to me first. After all, I am the one waking up with no idea why there's a strange person in my bedroom."
At this point Gavin showed his true nature. Any real spy would give a false name. Gavin, on the other hand, has to take credit for everything, and therefore gives out his name to anybody with the intelligence to ask.
"Richard Gavin, CIA, Super Spy. I know your not from around here, and I need to know what you know."
"Right now all I know is that I just woke up to find a... wannabe muslim leaning over me. What’s with the outfit?"
"Standard issue. With this outfit I can blend into any terrorist organization."
"Did you think about the fact that generally your outfit would stand out compared to your typical South Pacific villager?"
"Of course not, every terrorist is the same, with this outfit I can blend in anywhere."
Of all the CIA agents in the world, I had to end up stuck on an island with one who seemed to have failed geography.
"Fine, whatever, keep your costume, why does the CIA have an operative on Taku Rikiki?"
"Oh. The Venmon. As in makes-the-Triads-look-like-a-bunch-of-friendly-kitties Venmon?"
"One in the same."
"As in connected-to-the-Russians Venmon?"
"On this island?"
"Oh, $%^&!" This was my worst fear. Despite my best efforts, the Venmon might find me. Which would mean that the Russians had found me. Which would mean I would be part of their personal anger management session. As a punching bag.
"Yeah, and that isn't the half of it. Their using this island to hold a stolen microchip. I've been sent here to find it, and I think you may have tipped them off."
"I tipped them off?!?! You’re the one wearing Osama bin Laden's donation to Good Will. Look, I don't exactly...get along with the Venmon. You think you could get me off this island?"
"Maybe. I'm supposed to get into the fish processing plant tonight, to find the chip. After that I should be able to get an airlift out."
"The nearest U.S. Air Base, of course."
"Well, that leaves us in a bit of a tricky situation. You see, I'm not exactly welcome on American soil."
"I'm sure we can work something out. Are you going to help me or not?"
I'll give Gavin this: deep down he was a nice guy. He didn't owe me anything, but he was willing to try to get me off the island. I was more then willing to accept.
"Fine. What Can I do?"
"Meet me outside of the processing plant at midnight, we'll figure it out from there."
And that’s how Gavin and I met. And, of course, since Gavin was involved, the hit the fan.
we had the full moon on our side. We could see fairly easily, and meeting outside of the plant was no problem. In fact, even getting in was easy. Within a half hour I found myself standing inside the fish processing plant and fighting off a strong urge to become a vegetarian.
The place was deserted. Gavin, to his credit, actually cased the joint first, and so he had a good idea of where to look. He led me upstairs to a small office. Of course, since this was Gavin, something had to go wrong: after a rather destructive search of the office, we cam up with nothing.
I was getting desperate. No chip meant no ride off the island, so I took to digging through a pile of trash with gusto, meaning I couldn't see the door, when Gavin spoke up:
"You can stop looking"
"You found it? Great, lets get..." Or at least I thought it was Gavin. I spun around, and found that Gavin was being strangled by a huge man I had seen around the island the previous day. Standing in front of the man choking Gavin was the Elder. He was holding an alligator, stroking it like a cat. His skin rolled like leather as his lips moved and he spoke.
"I said you could stop looking. The chip isn't there. In fact, I have it, and so I would appreciate it if you would kindly stop destroying my office. You won't find anything there. Now, as for you, Mister "Business man," and your CIA friend, you will be coming with me to visit some friends of mine."
When a member of the Venmon speaks of his 'friends' he rarely means his high school buddies, or the guys from the bar. More likely, he's talking about something deadly. I don't know why 'friend' and 'thing-that-kills-you' are so closely associated, but I really had no interest in finding out more on the subject.
In our case, the old man's 'friends' were sharks. I knew enough about Taku Rikiki (it pays to research your likely hideouts) to know that the fishing boat he loaded us onto was heading into shark infested waters. Gavin was barely conscious after a beating at the hands of the larger man, and both of us were tied up. The old man was still holding his tiny pet alligator, who was nibbling playfully on the old man's face.
"I can't tell you how happy this makes me. I was beginning to think that I would have to kill a cow for the sharks. I can't go around wasting cows. now can I? So your arrival was wonderfully fortuitous. Take them of the boat, Tommy."
Of course. The big guy's name was Tommy. It's a universal constant. Any underground crime organization has at least one Tommy. Usually with a rather colorful (and suggestive) last name that puts you in mind of bullets.
Tommy picked us up and dropped us into the water.
Your last thoughts are supposed to be dramatic. Maybe "I lived a good life" or "I wish I had told her I loved her" not like mine, which ran along the lines of "I hope they eat that CIA @$$ Gavin first." I started to black out from lack of oxygen just as the sharks began to swim into view.
Big sharks, the tiny fish scattering before them. Big sharks, with big teeth, big eyes, big fins, big knives ... knives? Sharks don't have knives. Gavin, bless his idiotic, incompetent soul, had managed to sneak in a knife. Just as I was about to give in to the darkness Gavin pushed me to the surface, just far enough away from the boat to avoid detection. Thank God, I was saved! I was here, bobbing in the... shark infested water. SO much for that relief.
Sharks have a single, obvious weakness. They stay in the water. This gave me a brilliant idea: if you're not in the water, you cant be attacked by sharks. Sure, now that I look back, it wasn't all that brilliant. But, if you had sharks swarming below you, would you think of it?
the only trouble was taking advantage of this weakness. The nearest rock was a good 20 ft. away. Luckily for Gavin, I thought better on my feet then he did:
"Can use you use that knife?"
"Of course, what do you think I just di..."
"No, not that way, I mean like fighting something. Something like those sharks below us."
"Maybe, but I can't be sure I'll win."
"That’s a chance I'm willing to take. Follow me to that rock, and the minute anything gets near you, stab it."
Maybe I should have been more clear with my instructions. If I had had time to think, I would have said "Stab any shark that comes near you." But I didn't have that kind of time, and so, with only an arm's reach to the rock, I felt a stabbing pain in my leg.
"I got one!" Gavin yelled.
"No, you didn't, you cretin, you got my leg!" Get onto the rock and pull me up."
Gavin wasn't totally inept, and he dragged me onto the rock. We spent the pre-dawn hours moving slowly from rock to rock, and by daybreak we had made it to shore. My leg had stopped bleeding, but I was still slow moving. I limped around the beach with Gavin's help until we came to his hut. He had obviously gotten the nice accommodations. He even had a lawn of sorts with a low wall around it.
Inside he dressed my wound and made a call to the Air Base. Finally, I might be out of this mess, the Air Base was sending a copter. Just as I thought I might be able to live through this, I heard the first gunshot. And the second, the third, the fourth, actually a whole clip worth. Bullets zipped through the side of the cottage, and, completely by instinct, both Gavin and I dropped to the floor. We were lucky: the shooters were far enough away that the wall around Gavin's lawn gave us cover. We crawled out of the house and examined the situation: we were surrounded, Venmon on every side.
And that brings us to the present. A present that has just become filled with lots of noise. What the $%^* could the Venmon have that would create that much noise?
Oh, ^&*^^%. The Venmon have just proved that they are no second string mafia: they just rolled out a huge stylized flamethrower in the shape of a Dragon.
And Gavin and I are sitting by a thatched roof cottage. If the Venmon fire their little Burninator at the thatched roof cottage, Gavin and I are dead. But how are they powering it. Lets see... must need lots of gas... do the houses have gas stoves?
"Gavin, does your hut have a gas stove?"
"Not exactly a time for a quick bite to eat, is it? They've got a flamethrower out there!"
"Just answer the question."
"Well, yeah, I do, but why?"
"If gas goes in, there must be a pipe out here. If we can cut the pipe, they loose pressure, and we get a chance to escape."
There it is. Gavin, lucky bastard that he is, is standing in front of the pipe.
"Think you can break it open?"
"I still have my knife, lets see..."
Come on... Come on... I know he's useless, but can't he at least do this?
And not a moment to soon. I think I just felt them start the flame thrower. Angry voices start calling over the wall in th native language.
Gavin might be able to understand them: "What are they saying?"
"It worked. The copter should be here any minute.
Indeed it did work. The copter arrived, a squad of marines took out the Venmon who had us pinned down, and made an interesting discovery: The old man did have the chip, but not anywhere we expected to find it. That odd, greyish eye? Turns out it was just a compartment for the chip. So now I've got my chance at returning to the U.S., the CIA, have the chip, and, with any luck, I'll never see Gavin again.
Be bloody, bold, and resolute! Laugh to scorn The pow'r of man, for none of woman born Shall harm Macbeth
Avatar by Sialia
Monday, 13th October, 2003, 09:04 PM #70
round one: cool hand luke vs. macbeth
Keeping up Morale, part 1
OOC: The setting is a large metropolitan port city, with a definite shady side too it. (like waterdeep?? Perhaps? The main character is an underboss for the Paisans, the ruling mafia like group in the city, and not necessarily in a dnd setting)
When a man that works for you dies, it’s always bad for business. When that person is killed specifically to send a message that someone very powerful has taken offense at something you did, let’s just say it causes problems on many levels. First, is purely financial. When a guy is taken out of action permanently, you give 5000 imperials to the widow, 10k if the guy had kids. Ouch. Second, you have to find a someone to replace him. Jergan wasn’t just your typical copper-piece a dozen street thug, so finding a replacement is no easy thing to do. Good second story men are impossible to find. Most of them don’t have long careers, thanks to the profusion of magical traps, and such that are now all the vogue with the upperclass. Jergan was old school, the consummate professional. He often claimed he could slip into your house, and steal your daughters virtue without waking her up. (of course some of the guys said this wasn’t because he was sneaky, but because of his…. Well… stature)
(insert sneak picture). Finally, and probably most crucially, is making sure your remaining employees don’t take the death to hard.
Understandably, seeing a co-worker go down is hard on guys. First, because it tells everyone several bad things. 1. Someone dislikes you enough to spend money on an assassin to take you out. 2. There are enough holes in your defense that someone can get to you, and 3. The person was able to find and hire an assassin good enough to exploit these weaknesses.
The way we learned of his death was especially troubling. It was Monday morning, so, of course, I was waiting for everyone to show up for the weekend review meeting. (the weekend being a time when most of our vice oriented businesses are booming.) All of my guys were in the room, (except Tunden, who was taking care of his sick mother) Except Jergal. That’s when my personal assistant/ front office girl/ bodyguard Jillian entered, with a large wooden box. I could tell from the look on her face that something was up. She plopped the box down on my desk, and handed me a small crowbar (she has a remarkable ability to always have whatever tool is needed handy. I have to look into how she does that.) Nervously picking up the crowbar, I quickly pried the top of the wooden crate. I was so taken aback by what I saw there that I jumped, spilling the crate onto the ground.(consider what it takes to startle a guy who has made his living as an assassin) The severed left arm in it rolled out, and came to rest near the feet of one of my guys. There was no mistaking who’s it was, the intwined snakes going up the forearm told all that it was my missing sneak thief. Nedwin made a small retching noise, and appeared quite green. He blurted out, “By the Gods, what happened, why would someone do that?” He was a good kid, showed great promise as a forger/info man, but was still a little squeamish.
Jillian, who always had the best eyes in the group, (one of the reasons she’s the highest paid office clerk in the city, well, that, and her ruthless proficiency with poisoned darts….) Spoke up. “Boss, there something in the hand.” I tried to open the hand up, but death stiffness had set in, making it impossible. Frustrated, I tossed the grisly remains at one of my more seasoned men. “Go in the other room, get whatever it is out. Try not to massacre the poor thing.”
With a wordless shrug, the brute walked into the other room. A few minutes, and several loud smacks later, he came back out. Thankfully, he had left the arm in the other room. He comes out, holding a small white object. “Tooth boss.” He said, as he put it on my desk. We all studied the object silently for a minute, before Nedwin broke the silence. “what the hell does that mean?” As I said earlier, good kid, needs to keep his mouth shut though. I caught a raised eyebrow from Jillian, and nodded to her to fill the boy in. “It’s a Sharks tooth, tells you how they killed him. Most likely hacked the arm off, tossed him into the bay, and let there finned friends do the dirty work. It makes resurrection a real pain, and makes it hard to find the skull so you can speak with him from beyond the grave.”
All sat silently for a long time, Finally, I dismissed many of them to go check on our daily operations. I kept my inner circle, Jillian, and my four lietenants. Four now that Jergan was gone. Eventually, we hammered out a plan. Obviously someone was sending us a message, the severed arm confirmed that. If they just wanted to kill him, there are far easier ways to do it. The problem is we had no idea WHAT they were trying to tell us, only that they were quite serious about the cryptic message. We broke the meeting 2 hours later, no closer to a solution, but quite a bit more depressed. Not a good way to start the week. We were all going to think about the situation, and play everything really close to the vest, work in pairs, constant check ints, etc, just to play it safe.
As of Wednesday, we had had no big events, operations seemed to be running smoothly, which caused me great discomfort. Nobody goes to that kind of effort to send a message and then just drops it. Late Wednesday afternoon, Jillian walked in, and pulled up a chair. She sat back, and threw her very long legs up on my desk, briefly revealing a glint of steel of something quite deadly nestled on her thigh. She often uses her looks to her advantage, but I had become (mostly) immune to the effect. It’s hard to see a lady as real attractive after you’ve seen them methodically torture someone for a few days. She started “Boss, seems to me, our real problem is we don’t have a CLUE why we received an arm special delivery. I’m pretty sure it’s someone outside the organization. I’ve been doing some research , and we need to get the head back, to take to a wizard to question. But there’s gotta be a few thousand sharks in the bay. Anyway, I’ve heard talk lately of a shaman man living in the lowlands outside of town. Supposedly, he can talk with animals, some rumors say even become them, if you believe that. Maybe he can use his affinity with nature to help us out.”
Honestly, I didn’t think much of her idea, yet three days later, after failing to come up with a better one, I found myself slogging through a swamp looking for this mythical Shaman. After several hours slogging through the swamp, and listening the whinings and grumblings of the “muscle” I’d brought along, (amazing how tough a guy can be in a street fight, but get a little mud, and a few bite bugs on him, and he whimpers) we finally reached a clearing. It would be hard to say that a human lived here. There was a small fire pit, and what could be called, if one was very generous, a lean to, but no other signs of human habitation. As we sat there, and swatted a myriad of bugs off of us, suddenly before us materialized a man from the bushes. I was very adept at stealth, and for the life of me could not figure out how he could walk quietly through the thick swamp growth. As he neared us, he stared at us with one good eye, the other one had a milky covering, that was obviously blind. He started to talk in an accent so thick it’s almost impossible to understand, “My friends told me you were coming. City people don’t like nature’s swamp. Usually my friends and I are left alone. City people do bad things, with this, he reaches into a bush, and pulls up an immature reptilian creature, missing one back leg and most of it’s tail. (insert crocodile pic)
He continued, “city folk hurt him when he was a hatchling. Why you here?”
I stepped forward, and in a few minutes managed to stammer out a version of the story (no reason to give him all the details) I don’t know if it was his milky eye, the way the reptile “kissed” the man, or the surroundings that so unnerved me, but my usual silken tongue had turned to burlap.
It was quite apparent that he was very unhappy with our presence, and none to convinced by our story. After I finished, he sat silently for long enough to make us all very uncomfortable, and notice once again the myriad of bugs crawling on us, looking for a nice juicy spot to bite. He suddenly sprang into action, “you ask for help, yet offer nothing. I thought of something You can do, city folks (he says with obvious disdain) and heads through the bush. We were hard pressed to keep up. He moved with such amazing ease through the swamp, and we were left floundering, flopping, and cursing in the mud as he cruised on. After 20 of the longest minutes of my life, we came to another patch of solid ground. There was a crude altar there built of sturdy wood. The top of which was charred, as were the branches of the overhanging trees. “Here for years was the skull of the fire god’s great war beast. (insert firehead pic)
It was worshipped by many, feared by all. It had great magic in it. Magic man from city come and steal it. Has many powerful magics. My friends could not stop him, they were held still like stone. I went into the city, (where he spits on the ground in disgust) but could not find him for his magics. You find the remains.”
At that point, I figured, what the hell? If I didn’t figure out who offed one of my guys, I was going to have big issues anyway. After agreeing, the shaman took off back into the swamp, expecting us to follow him. After an hours hard march, during which time, any non-mudcoated part of us was bitten by something, we came to where the swamp gave way to the bay. Sitting there was a crude boat, made from a huge hollowed out log. He nodded at us to board it, and, with great trepidation, we loaded up. He handed out paddles, and we attempted to navigate the boat. Our inexperience was comical, as we only managed to soak ourselves, and propel ourselves in a large circle. We finally made it out past the breakwater, and rolled gently on the waves. I could see the man behind me turning a nice green color, as the motion got to him. Suddenly one of the men shouted, “What the….” As the boat was bumped by something in the water. The shaman, looking quite disgusted with us, “you ask for the sharks, and I call them, now you complain?” In the next few minutes, dozens of sharks could be seen skimming just below the surface. (insert shark pic) My crew was uneasy to say the least, and one screamed like a stuck pig when the Shaman suddenly stood off, and jumped overboard! Rocking the boat violently. “crazy old man, he’s dead for sure now.” We sat there, not quite sure what to do for a while, when suddenly the water broke next to us, and the white of the man’s one good eye gleamed eerily in the moonlight. “Is this your friend?” As he tossed a head into the boat.
Now identifying a head after it’s been in the stomach of a shark for a week is neither easy, nor pleasant. Luckily, the large intricate earring was still attached.
Now I just have to figure out what to do with a smelly head, a skull stealing magic user, and a powerful yet unknown enemy.
sometimes nothing is a real cool hand