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Found 10 results

  1. Brightness Kareana sat with her head between her hands, muttering quietly to herself. So few remained after the bloodshed of the recent nights, with the Radiants taking matters into their own hands, failing more often than not. Now there were three senior Radiants left besides her; a far cry from the twenty-four she had started with, and populated with at least one traitor. She figured that she would be dead already if more than one of them had been working with Odium, yet the clandestine murders at night continued, Kir stabbed in his sleep, so the scouting party was by no means free of evil influences. The Breakaway seemed to be shielded against Re-Shephir’s shadows, or at least they had not ventured into her domain yet, so one of Cadamum, Adi or Adhom Inem was still responsible for the murders. Kareana frowned. It would not be too difficult to kill all three. She had blackbane in her bag, and the Radiants were notorious tea drinkers. It would be a simple matter of slipping some into everyone’s portion, guaranteeing she was the only one left after the mess the scouting party had been. A few now-terrified scribes and mostly terrified soldiers remained, and they had the data Dalinar wanted. If she were able to expunge the remaining lackey of Odium and get Radiant reinforcements from properly vetted men, it would be a step in the right direction. Yet Adi and Cadamum were experienced Radiants, and Adhom Inem showed good potential; besides, she could hardly call herself honourable by avoiding a difficult decision by condemning the innocent with the guilty. And explaining what had happened to Dalinar would be...difficult. Approaching footsteps clicked on the stone tiles, and Kareana lifted her head in time to see Adi trotting towards her, the same furrowed look of concentration and anxiety on her brow which she had had since the expedition began. Of the three senior Radiants, she trusted Adi the most; she had admitted to leaving a long glyph message in the rock the night Gilglin was murdered, and judging by its length and location she had done little else at the time; besides, she had a general air of honesty about her. The grooves of thought in her forehead were plowed particularly deep, though, and Kareana’s caring instincts took over. “What’s the matter, child?” she asked, sidling up next to her and studying her face. She was distraught, and it came through in her speech, which became scattered and broken. “I just know—later today—I’ll have to choose between—Cadamum and Adhom for who’s going to die—and I could end up picking the wrong one and dooming the world. What if I got it wrong, Brightness? Would I be reviled for—for what I did? How can we get out of this mess?” Kareana took Adi’s shoulders in a firm grip, but trembled internally. She had been thinking of how she was going to approach the situation, but what about the near-child upon which she was allowing their fate to be hung? She was shortsighted, at times. But she could not be here. “Listen, Adi. Your decision today, be it right or wrong, will not cause anyone to despise you, and if it does, that’s a reflection on them and not you. The Almighty won’t let us doom the world, and he’ll watch over you no matter how you choose. We came up here knowing there would be risk, yes?” Adi nodded tearfully. “Well, we’ve had to take those risks, and you’ve already won your share of them. You took it when you helped condemn Merinira. Almighty willing, the risk will be equally in our favour tomorrow. But even if it isn’t, we’ll still take it. Strength before weakness, child.” That straightened her up. Drying her tears, Adi nodded at Kareana. “Well, thank you, Brightness,” she said, pausing awkwardly as Kareana inclined her head in acknowledgement. Her voice trailed off. “Well...I’m going to find the other two now, if you’ll excuse me.” “Of course,” Kareana said softly. Watching the child make a bumbling retreat, she suddenly smiled. It was high time she took her own advice. She had been a bystander in the fighting amongst her Radiants for too long. Starting now, that would change. Grabbing a conventional broadsword and latching it to her belt, and taking one of the half-Shards from her pack which Dalinar had set up, she tailed the girl at a distance. This time, she would ensure that the aftermath of a decision would be strictly under her control. On the forty-fourth floor, Adhom Inem glared over the fire at Cadamum. He knew the man had to be the final Sympathiser to Odium. The girl was too innocent to have been going around murdering people, especially given that she had spent the night carving a message into a rock wall—what self-respecting murderer did that? Yet the four Radiant squires with them made the question of dispatching the man a much trickier one. Cadamum would be expecting the Surge of Division, and Adhom doubted an arrow or knife would be quick enough to pierce his defences, based on watching him fight in the past. Adhom gritted his teeth. He had to find a way to get at him! Yet there seemed to be no chink in his armour, at least in a public setting like this one. Lunging over the fire would certainly be effective if the two were alone, but the squires could easily arrest his progress if they had to. And perhaps it was best that the squires were there, or he’d have been dead a long time ago. Cadamum certainly hadn’t backed away from murder before, and with so few of them left now... A pair of running footsteps sounded in the hallway. Cadamum pivoted to face the door, giving Adhom a clear view of his exposed back. Yet two of the squires were watching him with eyes that radiated warning. For the first time, he felt seriously discomfited. Were they also with Odium? Or was the paranoid atmosphere of Urithiru simply seeping into his bones? Either way, he had cause for concern. The pattering stopped, and Adi appeared in the doorway, looking more concerned than usual. Understandably so, of course; she did not have the clarity afforded to him by the situation. However, he had come prepared to convince her, and immediately began launching into his explanation. Cadamum’s hands were creeping towards an array of daggers at his belt, and so he made it as quick as possible, trying to look Adi in the eye while keeping the other eye trained on the traitor's hands. It wasn’t easy, and the skeptical glances from Adi made it even more difficult. As he pled that Cadamum had been unable to prove he had not murdered, she finally silenced his explanations with a wave of her hand. Adhom felt sick. Was he being left to die? “If you don’t believe me,” he shouted, feeling a sudden burst of passion, who do you trust? Him?” He jabbed in the direction of Cadamum’s back with his knife. Adi bit her lip, blood trickling down her cheek. Suddenly, she snapped too. “I don’t trust either of you!” she yelled, drawing her knives. “You two sort this out! I can’t...I’m not condemning either of you!” Adhom’s heart sank. Not the answer he needed to hear. For his part, Cadamum grinned. “Suit yourself,” he said, and released the dagger in his hand. Adi yelped, jumping out of the doorway into the main hall as the dagger whizzed past her head. The four squires stirred, but the two Adhom had noted earlier were far faster, sinking their blades into the others. They died almost silently, their screams cut off by the steel sliding into their lungs. Looking up, he saw both Cadamum and his squires facing him. He was a powerful Radiant, but not that powerful. He would simply have to see how many of Odium’s scum he could take with him. Whirling, he went for Cadamum’s head, Lashing himself to the opposite wall for additional unexpected momentum. The Ghostblood seemed taken aback, barely moving himself out of the way of the oncoming blade, and Adhom felt a hint of satisfaction as the edge of his sword skirted along the other man’s shoulder, drawing blood. The satisfaction was short-lived, however, as Cadamum’s own sword came with impressive speed at his own head. Too disoriented from the Lashing to effectively move, it hit true, and Adi’s quickly retreating figure was the only Loyal Radiant remaining in the expedition. Adi flew down the hallway as fast as her legs could carry her, away from whatever Cadamum and his men were doing in there. Adhom Inem was likely already dead, and she was the only one left who could warn Kareana and get her to stop their threat before it was too late. Internally, she berated herself for her stupidity. How difficult could it have been to just choose? But you had to go and choose the wrong person, and doom us all! Kareana would be furious when she heard what had happened. Or perhaps she’d be understanding. It could be hard to tell with that woman, at times, but right now she was the Radiants’ best hope. As she turned a corner, still sprinting doggedly, a silhouette jumped into her vision from behind the wall, and she screamed, awkwardly braking but still slamming into the mail-plated Kareana and falling to the paving-stones. The brightlady was taken aback, but maintained her footing, pulling Adi to her feet. “You gave me a fright there, child. What’s the matter?” Too exhausted to cry at the memory, Adi related her tale. Kareana’s lips tightened as she related the betrayal of the squires, and she sighed at Adhom’s death. “There was nothing you could have done by staying, Adi, though I wish things had gone otherwise. It’s too late to berate ourselves for our blunders at this point, and our best hope is isolating the squires and killing them, then dealing with Cadamum. Do you figure the three are still on the forty-fourth floor?” “Probably,” Adi replied, wiping the blood from where it had run down her cheek and turning down the passage where she had come from. “At least one would be, to watch for my return, probably. Though they probably think you’re still holed up in the Breakaway—I know I did, or I’d have had you help.” “That's not exactly excellent news,” Kareana said grimly, “but Ellira and Errdal can probably hold the Breakaway for now if they have to. If they don’t expect me, we can probably scatter them here. But I’ll need your help. You will be required here, Adi—I can’t watch my back for those shadows without you, and it’s high time you started striking at these false Radiants now that they’ve unmasked themselves.” Adi breathed deeply, allowing Kareana’s words to sink in. “Okay,” she said, and peered around the doorframe leading to the forty-fourth floor. Her breath caught in her throat. Motioning Kareana to also look, she took in what she observed. Led by one of the squires she had seen earlier, a regiment of about four dozen of the shadowed figures was forming, oily black spears and shields and swords coalescing from seemingly nothing. A marching beat shook the floor, led by the back rank of shadows, which seemed to be the ones responsible for the discordant drumming reaching her ears. It was an impressive force, given that two or three of these shadows could give a Radiant trouble, and there were few of them left anyway. Ordinary soldiers would be hopeless against such a force. The squire motioned, and the section pivoted, heading perpendicular to the doorway towards another point in the hall. Realisation flooded Adi with dread. “They’re heading for the lift system!” she hissed to Kareana, who only nodded grimly. “If they reach it, they’ll get the Breakaway, and cut off the Oathgate!” “Then we follow them!” Kareana replied, and pushed past Adi into the open chamber, producing her Shardblade. Bracing herself, Adi did the same, and charged after her mentor. She would make Cadamum pay for the deaths of her companions. Kareana charged out of the doorframe, swinging her Shardblade at the two nearest shadowed figures, who were taken aback. Their blades of shadow somehow managed to block Kareana’s initial wild strokes, but the neatly formed ranks collapsed, and consternation reigned in the chamber. Behind her, Adi had already speared a shadow with her Blade, and was fending off another with her dagger. She was awfully quick with it, and Kareana stopped worrying about her as she began having her own problems. Her Shardplate marking her as the greater threat, the shadows thronged around her, jabbing with spears and slashing with swords. Somehow, her Blade managed to intervene, chopping the weapons apart, and occasionally ending a shadowed form. Unlike what Errdal had reported, these units actually seemed to die, their essence in the Cognitive Realm disappearing entirely when she struck. Perhaps it was the cost of allowing the shadows to roam so freely far from Re-Shephir’s lair. Or perhaps it simply made them more dangerous—some of their weapons had blocked a Shardblade, after all. Setting to her task with renewed determination, Kareana struck out at the soldiers around her, not relying on the Blade’s destructive power as some did, but maintaining the forms she had been taught, and looking for the gaps in her enemy’s. A slice here, a thrust there, and the ranks began to collapse further, with perhaps half the shadows dead. Adi was making quick work of a group of three that came up behind her—was that Soulcasting the girl had used on that one shadow behind her? She was full of surprises, and good ones to boot. Cutting down two more figures in her way, Kareana renewed her charge, Adi in tow, aiming for the squire who led the group. They met halfway, blades clashing again, and Kareana left Adi to do most of the work with the shadows as Cadamum’s squire produced an aluminum sword. Easy to block a Shardblade with, and potentially deadly in the hands of a skilled user. Sparks flew as the blades met, and the remaining shadows surged, forcing Kareana back again. She gritted her teeth. How on Braize was she supposed to fight this many enemies at once conventionally? Adi was already desperately fending off a group of five shadows, which were wisely staying out of Blade range. That left her a dozen or so. There was nothing to be done, then, except use Surges. Breathing deeply from one of the two large gemstones she carried, she drew enough Stormlight for a low-powered Surge of Division, which pulsed out from her in a wave of heat and light. Adi gritted her teeth as her torso was burnt, but Kareana had no alternative. The shadows quaked as well, their forms loosening, and she wasted no time. Their cluster of attack was easy to hit with a Blade, and only one of the dozen escaped immolation. Kareana was pleased to see that none of Adi’s five were giving her trouble either. Grinning, she blocked the vengeful squire’s quick strike, twisting her Shardblade as she did so to cut off the vanguard of his sword. He back-pedalled, frantically attempting to escape the wheeling arc of light which Kareana’s blade had become, but he instead fell, tripping over an outcropping which a thousand years of crem buildup had magnified to many times its initial size. He stumbled forward, overbalancing, directly into Kareana’s thrust. Behind her, Adi swept the legs out from the final shadow, which crackled and dissipated into nothing. A sudden silence fell, broken only by the crackling of small fires that Kareana’s Surge had begun. That’s right, Adi’s injured! Kareana remembered, rushing over to the girl. “How badly were you burnt?” she asked, kneeling over her. “Not too badly,” she replied, “though I don’t know Progression, so you’ll have to take care of that.” Kareana winced. “I don’t exactly know it either,” she admitted, “so you’ll have to manage. Sorry.” The word felt odd in her mouth, especially to her subordinate, but it was also necessary—the girl had every right to be annoyed. “I had to scatter those things somehow so I could deal with the squire.” “It’s not an issue,” Adi replied. “Strength before weakness, as you say.” The ghost of a smile flickered across her face. “Come on, let’s use the lift to get back to the Breakaway. Walking off my injury will be best anyway, and I’m sure Errdal and Ellira want to know about this attack.” “Remind me again why we’re entering on this level?” Adi whispered, following Kareana off the lift onto the floor below the Breakaway. “If there’s a battle up there, we’d have heard it by now.” “I’m not worried about walking into a battle,” she retorted, “but walking into a battlefield where the shadows have already won. That’s a trap I’m not putting my leg in. I’d have obviously headed straight up if there was any commotion, because we’d need to help. But this situation calls for caution.” “D’you reckon anyone is left in the Breakaway that the shadows would care about?” Adi asked. While Errdal was a Shardbearer, and Ellira had shown herself to be eerily competent, neither were Radiant. And the Breakaway was a good distance away from the Oathgate platform, enough that there were entry points that were closer to the gates on the lift system. Of course, given how forces were amassing, Cadamum might have had enough of the shadowed warriors to destroy the Breakaway with one group and secure the Oathgate with another. Suddenly, Kareana’s concerns didn’t seem so far-fetched. She gulped. Was she going to have to fight those shadows again? Kareana had fallen silent beside her, and Adi turned to look at the woman. The same set and determined face as always looked out, the eyes iron with resolve. Yet her posture suggested only weariness. “Brightness, if you can’t make it through another one of these battles…” “No, child,” the reply came. “I will endure as many battles as I need to get everyone down to safety and warn Dalinar that Urithiru is inhabited by traitors and Odiumspren. Remember, we were placed on this mission because Brightlord Kholin thought us able to handle any potential dangers. That includes armies of ancient spren. Worry about your own health—you’ll need to if we get into another of these scrapes.” Adi nodded. “As you say, Brightness.” She glanced around the passageway, which was narrowing and starting to ascend. The familiar golden and blue strata here gave her hope—normally the Midnight Mother’s creations made those bleed to red or purple—but caution was still necessary. She squinting, casting her eyes into the distance, and to her surprise found a Shardblade-wielding figure already standing in the doorway. She nudged Kareana, who muttered assent. “I see him. Though I think that’s Errdal, judging by the stance.” As they drew closer, Adi saw with relief that it was indeed the Shardbearer who had accompanied Radler on that fatal expedition, in what seemed like so long ago. Had it really been less than a week? It seemed unthinkable that a party of traitors could wipe out their entire group that quickly. Though we certainly did enough of their work for them, she thought grimly, wincing at the memory of failed murders and executions. For his part, Errdal peered back, and Adi saw his knuckles tighten on his Blade, then loosen and dismiss the Shard when he saw them. “Kareana, Adi!” he exclaimed, smiling. “It is you two. I’d worried you were shadows coming up to attack us again.” Adi felt a spike of alarm, and Kareana’s eyebrow visibly rose. “Again?” they said, Kareana’s indignance mixing with Adi’s worry. “When?” demanded the other woman. “An hour or so ago, Brightness. After you and Adi left, they assaulted us, a group of maybe fifty—” “Four dozen,” Adi muttered. “—pouring through that gateway. The soldiers were shaken, and I was as well, but Ellira and I managed to rally them. They were harder to kill than in the chamber, I think, but the deaths seemed permanent.” “I felt the same, oddly enough. Casualties?” Kareana’s voice was certainly strained. “Five dead and seven wounded, mostly those caught unaware in the initial rush. A lot more are shocked, though, and barely survived the mental strain. Once we grouped up, they were easier to handle, though without my Shard and Ellira’s daggers…” His voice trailed off, and Kareana resumed. “Where is Ellira? Wasn’t she supporting you? I don’t fully trust that girl.” “I don’t either,” Errdal replied grimly, “but she’s had two chances to kill me in the middle of combat and hasn’t yet. I think she went—” Errdal’s next words were cut off as a resounding boom echoed throughout the chamber, then the marching beat of drums. Adi heard Kareana swear under her breath, and looked askance at the brightlady. Errdal wasted no time, however. “Get inside the Breakaway!” he yelled, shoving both women towards its entrance, and slamming the doors to the area behind him as the three sprinted through. Adi panted, her legs already exhausted, but Kareana pulled herself up. “We will hold this door,” she announced, raising her voice. “Every person not a Radiant, which should be everyone that was in this room five minutes ago, should exit immediately towards the Oathgate platform. That is an order. We will meet you there later. Am I clear?” Assent was murmured, scribes and soldiers making their way with various speeds towards the direction Kareana had indicated. A group of soldiers tried to approach Adi, clearly wanting to help despite knowing it was hopeless, but Kareana affixed them with an icy enough glare that they saluted, retreating back down the hall. Adi looked back at the door. The red and purple veins in the rock weren’t just spreading, they were creeping up the door, and approaching the handles. Drums shook her ears, and she winced, bracing herself against the onslaught that was to come. Darkness slowly suffocated the window slats, leaving only Kareana and Errdal’s Blades to cast thin rays of light about them. The chamber shuddered again, then lay still. Adi closed her eyes as the veins reached the handles, pulling on them with sudden force and strength. The doors flew open, and chaos began anew. The shadows always came first, Kareana decided as she watched the doors to the Breakaway physically crumble, and an army twice the size she and Adi had faced down earlier emerge from its depths. The squire here had evidently learned, and was in the far back, using his aluminum-coated blade to urge the thronging army into the Breakaway chamber. Plans of holding the doorway immediately evaporated upon the sudden onslaught of figures, and Kareana stood back-to-back with Adi and Errdal, almost unable to distinguish the oily figures from each other. Her Blade was again a wheel of light, albeit a slower one than last time, as there was no alternative to that fighting style even if it tired you quickly—whatever those shadows actually were, their weapons bit like real ones, and only by covering all of herself could she keep the hordes from simply crushing her. Behind her, Errdal did the same, though less defensively, and Adi continued awkwardly squished between the two of them, yet still picking off unwary shadows and deflecting stray blows which threatened to hit the Shardwielders. Kareana had to admit to herself, even as she again fought for her life, that she had two of the bravest companions she’d had the privilege of fighting with. Errdal fearlessly took the offensive with his Blade, striking at the shadows in the gaps between their weapons and shields, and forcing them into an awkward defensive, while Adi seemed to find it nothing to throw herself between a blade and one of her companions to save them. She had already blocked Kareana from being hit twice, and had managed with her spear-work and small manoeuvrability to avoid damage. Yet it was undeniable that they were losing. The second wave of shadows slammed in after the first, the disarmed and limbless replaced by fresher and stronger forces, if the concepts of strength and energy could be said to apply to the constructs. Some of these had what looked to be pikes, and were staying out of Shardblade range, forming into a ring around the encircled defenders, behind the sword-wielding constructs which still hacked away. Kareana winced, seeing what was about to happen seconds before it did, yet unable to use Division to prevent it without outright killing her companions in the process. That didn’t stop her from unleashing a concentrated storm on the figures in front of her, however, which crackled to pieces against the blast of fire and wind. Then the ring closed, the ordinary soldiers receding to make room for the charge, and Kareana saw several things happen at once. Most immediately, in front of her, were four pikemen with their spears levelled at her chest. Division would be too slow, and an ineffective blast was more of a risk to Adi than a help to her. So she rolled out, ducking beneath the long spears and swinging her Blade, watching in satisfaction as all four figures jerked and died. However, a mass of shadows immediately filled the space between her and Adi, leaving the girl stranded with Errdal as the rest of the ring closed. Horrified, she let her guard drop for a brief moment, feeling her Shardplate suddenly double in weight as it cracked underneath the weapons of the shadows, but Kareana had eyes only for Errdal, whose lack of Plate had cost him dearly in the assault. Though his Blade had cleft nearly a dozen of the figures as he died, only one needed to get through, and now he lay prone on the floor, gazing with sightless eyes at the ephemeral pike protruding through his chest. Adi, to her credit, was facing off well against the crowd of shadows, ignoring Errdal’s corpse and using her energy to frantically block the jabbing spears and blades of her enemies. She had only moments, though. Snapping out of her reverie, Kareana let her Shardplate, which felt only like lead, drop to the floor, cutting the straps with her dagger which she held in her safehand. Making wide sweeps with the Blade to clear room for herself, Kareana beckoned Adi over, and the child hurriedly disengaged from the group she was fending off. Kareana was pleased to see that the crowd of shadows had thinned, returning to perhaps slightly more than the fifty or so she had encountered earlier. However, combined with the squire, who was approaching the rapidly tiring women like a circling whitespine, she wondered if the two of them could take on such a force. Cutting down two more shadows with her Blade, and watching as Adi Soulcast four more into oblivion, Kareana resumed the grim battle, feeling her arms grow more tired with each stroke. Next to her, Adi was flagging as well. “Can’t give up—now,” she grunted, darting her sword into another figure, which collapsed. “Life before—death. We can’t—leave things as they are now—we can’t die yet.” Kareana laughed, feeling Adi’s confidence infuse her with a burst of fresh energy. Spinning, she caught another shadow’s weapon, sending it flying into a neighbour. “You speak well, Radiant. We will hold this yet.” She only wished she was as confident as she sounded. With the squire drawing ever closer to them, and the shadows continuing to die, it would be only a matter of time before the deciding move was made. Half a minute and five more dead shadows later, as both Adi and Kareana continued bleeding in multiple places, she was proven correct. The squire raised his arm, and the shadows all disengaged, retreating to behind him. Walking forward, he addressed Kareana. “You put up a brave resistance against the Lord Odium. Surrender now, and he may deign to spare your immaterial lives. We are always looking for new servants.” A humourless smile touched his lips. “Or you may die here, exhausted and overwhelmed. It is your choice.” Kareana spat at the ambassador's feet, and he recoiled, glaring at the brightlady. “Very well, then,” he responded. “Death it is.” Without warning, the shadows attacked with renewed vigour, pressing Kareana back against the wall of the enormous chamber. Adi stayed beside her, but she was having to contend with the human squire at the same time, who was far more skilled than the shadowed copycats. A resounding clamour could easily be heard every time the two clashed blades, the squire’s heavy overhand strokes forcing Adi to her knees, holding her sword above her in a desperate attempt to ward off the blows. Beside her, where Kareana’s Blade could not reach in time, a shadow stabbed, its spear entering Adi’s side and causing the girl to scream in pain. Fighting for her own life, Kareana could only watch as Adi’s sword fell from numb fingertips, and the squire’s blade swept in one last motion, cleaving the head of the last member of the expedition loyal to Dalinar. So I really am alone, then. Odium has already won. No. She would not—could not—accept that. She screamed in rage, unleashing a Surge of Division almost unconsciously—with no allies for her to hit, it worked wonderfully as intended, the squire hissing in pain and the shadows shuddering, as they had before. Kareana took the opportunity to lay about her with her Blade, and the very advantage of the compact group when assailing her now became a liability as strokes killed five at a time. The shadows that could quickly retreated, once more making a ring around the squire. There were a mere handful left, at least compared to the numbers she had faced down earlier, but her body was screaming in pain, particularly her arms. She was definitely too old to be carousing around fighting Odium’s spawn. But as Adi had said, there was no choice. It was in the First Ideal from the beginning. Life before death. Strength before weakness. So she did the only logical thing for any outnumbered and exhausted force to do: charge. The squire was unfazed, meeting her Shardblade with the aluminum-coated rapier he held. It had a strangely heavy weight to it, if that wasn’t simply her torpid arm speaking for her. The shadows seemed to stay back, refusing to engage with her. A duel, then. That’s the fairest odds I’ve been offered all day. The squire parried with a vengeance, his thin blade whipping around to strike at Kareana’s exposed sides. Off-balance, she tried to pivot away, but had slowed too much from sheer exhaustion, and she felt cold steel pierce her upper leg. Groaning but staying upright, she swung weakly at the man’s exposed head, but he ducked easily as he withdrew the Blade. One, two, powerful strokes, and Kareana felt her Blade drop, her fingers reverberating with the clash of the metals. Looking up at the Sympathiser, who was clearly relishing his victory, she felt her heart speed up as he drew back to plunge his sword into her. My heart is speeding up. It seemed like such an odd detail to latch onto when she was about to die, but it was somehow important. Ten heartbeats. My Blade... The sword moved forward, but Kareana was faster, a final burst of energy allowing her to roll beneath the thrusting blade and stand on the other side, summoning the Blade through the back of the squire. He fell without a word. Kareana hit the ground before the last shadow had completed its screech of death, skewered on the end of her Shardblade. She had never felt so utterly exhausted in her life. And yet I must keep going, she reminded herself. There's a whole room of non-Radiants waiting to be slaughtered if you don’t act! Overcoming the sluggishness of her brain, she tried to get up, and found that one of her legs felt like lead, and that the other was numb. Odd, that—there had been sharp pain there before. She looked down, and saw blood still oozing from it in a thin red trickle. Well, it was little wonder she was in no state to be moving around. Suddenly, she began laughing. There she was, the victor and only survivor of a great battle, and she could not lift a leg to help herself. Brightness Kareana, Captain Radiant, Shardwielder, warrior, force of nature, lay prone and useless. Heedless of Errdal and Adi’s corpses, she laughed, unable to process the ridiculousness of the situation, laughed until her sides began hurting and she was gasping for air. After a good minute, however, she began sobering up, her breaths coming more evenly and slowly than the shuddered gasps she had been taking. A sudden pain in her bad leg flared, then subsided. She looked down, and saw her wounds close, her dizziness subside, and fresh energy flow through her veins. Standing with ease yet with wonder, Kareana looked down into her pouch, and saw with horror that almost an entire gemstone had been drained. Well, apparently I lied to Adi when I said I didn’t have Progression. Though it only works on myself? Either way, this was probably the greatest gift she could have been given—perhaps there would be no Stormlight left after the first trip, and perhaps she would remain stuck at the top, but there would be no usage of the Oathgate if she was lying half-dead in the Breakaway. Thank you, Almighty, she prayed, and ran with renewed vigour for the doorway leading to the Oathgate platform, taking care to put the sack of gemstones behind her to avoid accidentally inhaling more Stormlight. With happiness, she noted that her assistants were already well ahead, as she was unable to see them, and she blessed the Almighty again for unthinking obedience. It wasn’t always ideal, but here it had saved many lives. Making the final turn into the Oathgate complex, she was greeted by two jumpy soldiers, who brandished their spears at her before studying her face. “Brightness!” one exclaimed, dropping his aggressive stance. “You’re here! Where did the others go?” “They’re dead,” said Kareana simply. That sobered the room up, and silence fell among the chatting scribes. “And we all will be soon, if we don’t use this opportunity to get away. Klavin!” “Brightness?” a young soldier asked, stepping forward. He was barely old enough to shave, Kareana mused, but he had a cool head about him, and she had observed him calming the troops earlier after the first attack. He’d hold them together for long enough, and had an ordered mind to remember what he was told. She began again. “You get a battlefield promotion to second-in-command, now that all my Radiants are dead. Lead this group after you arrive in the Shattered Plains to Dalinar’s tent immediately, and tell him that Urithiru has been overrun by the servants of Odium, led by a man named Cadamum. Brightlord Kholin and his forces are to avoid the city, particularly the thirty-eighth floor, until he has a trained, powerful and trustworthy group of Radiants to reclaim it. Within the scribes’ notes is everything we know about the city. I, Kareana, testify to this report and its accuracy, and am not giving this in person in order that I might defend the Oathgate from above. Do you have all that?” Klavin’s face was knitted in concentration. “Yes, Brightness,” he said hesitantly. “Repeat it back to me.” He did, and switched only two words. Kareana was impressed, correcting him and having him lead the dishevelled party onto the platform, Vamah’s sorry regiment forming a ring around the distraught scribes. It was unlikely to do much good if they were attacked, but it was better than nothing. As they filed up, one of the scribes tapped Kareana’s shoulderplate. “What about Ellira, Brightness?” she asked. Damnation alive, that girl! Kareana felt like screaming at someone, probably herself, but she kept her face straight, though her lips were drawn in a thin line. “She’ll have to find her way here, or help me hold the shadows back at the top. I’m not responsible for her wanderings. If she chose to disobey my commands, I can only assume suspicious motives. We’ll wait a bit, I suppose, but time is precious here, and I can only countenance so much delay.” “You will not need to tolerate much more, Brightness,” a voice came from behind her, and Kareana spun around. Ellira stood there, a smug expression on her face, and Kareana began to wonder if she had wanted the girl back after all. Indigo Weasel (Adhom Inem) was lynched! He was a Loyal Knight Radiant Worldhopper! Violet Axolotl (Adi) was killed! She was a Loyal Knight Radiant Worldhopper! Errdal was killed! He was a Loyal Shardbearer! You will discover the ultimate fates of Kareana, Ellira and Cadamum after El finishes her section of the writeup. After a few delays, AG6/AN7 is over, and Odium’s Sympathisers have triumphed yet again! Congratulations to Quartz Zebra, Ivory Dragonfly, Plum Rhinoceros, Scarlet Octopus, Saffron Iguana and Salmon Meerkat for engineering a narrow late-game victory. Please DO NOT log out of your anonymous accounts yet, or post with your regular ones in this thread (though you are free to, and are indeed encouraged to talk with your anon account). Identity will still be presumed to be anonymous as we vote for the annual dissemination of non-Sanderson passes. This year, the passes (of which there are three) should go to the individuals who exhibited a consistent dedication to and engagement with the game by, for instance, engaging people in PMs, being an active or frequent participant in the thread, using their CRs and sticking with RP, etc. Everyone who participated in the game (so yes, Toucan will get two votes from the original and the pinch-hitter) will submit a ranked list of five people in their GM PM who they believe to have best exhibited these qualities, or otherwise demonstrated a desire or ability to maintain and encourage thread activity. You have until 9:00 PM EDT on Saturday 25 January (so about three and a half days) to submit or modify this list. At the end of that time, El and I will use the STV (Single Transferable Vote) system to select the top three players, who will be awarded a pass to run a non-Sanderson game. Thanks to everyone for playing, and tolerating your slow GM as he constructs an overly long final scene. While I’ll give most of my final thoughts after voting has taken place, I’ll note quickly that the post count on this AG was lower, but I think each person was able to stay at least somewhat engaged over the course of the game, which was wonderful to see—outright inactivity was very low. And I loved all the RP, especially the people who took it beyond the first few cycles. Expect my next game to have some kind of minor reward built-in for that, as it was fun to read and then later kill you in a manner more befitting your character. Final playerlist to be posted with correct identities after voting is over. Some doc links for those who want them: Eliminator Doc (The Knights Errant) Spectator/Dead Doc (The Tranquiline Halls) Master Spreadsheet (forthcoming) Thanks again to everyone for playing and providing an awesome start to SE’s new year. We couldn’t do these games without you.
  2. Only two nobles left between him and completion of the mission. This could have been completed much earlier, if it weren’t for the unfortunate accidents that had befallen his compatriots. No matter, soon Alethkar would finally be under Ghostblood rule, though of course no active member would be sitting on the throne. Everyone involved in this debacle would disappear, never to be heard from again. One of the other nine Highprinces would be selected as the new king, potentially a Sadeas. Ularid had heard the Ghostbloods maintained ties to that family, though he didn’t pay a lot of attention to politics beyond his goal of ousting the Kholins. Such a shame he’d been forced to kill Brightness Dedja, who’d allegedly shared the same goal. She’d have made an excellent scapechull for the murder of the entire Kholin family. Perhaps he would be outed as the assassin and be hunted down by the new king at the Ghostbloods’s order. Ularid couldn’t bring himself to care. He didn’t want fame or power, and at his age, even life was nearly worthless. He just needed to survive long enough to see Alethkar freed from tyranny, and to do that he had to kill Brightlords Jumae III and Straw. Ularid was confident in his chances. His skills as an artifabrian had brought him to this point, but it was his talents as an orator that would allow him to finish off the remaining obstacles. Straw still opposed him, as expected. The straw man was a near perfect likeness of Gavilar the Butcher. Ularid could barely stand to look at him without feeling the urge to blow his cover and strike him down. Even knowing that this was not the same man who had ordered the annihilation of his city and the homes of anyone else who dared resist his senseless power grab, Ularid could not help but feel sickened by the effigy’s presence. Especially because, if Straw could be believed, Ularid would have been killed by that Grandbow-wielding assassin had Straw not intervened. Any gratitude he might have felt was drowned out by his sense of duty and his emergent need for vengeance. He would settle this today. Attaching his longsword and a newly cleaned short sword to his belt, Ularid walked into the warcamp to challenge Straw to a duel. Straw was waiting for him in the middle of the camp, clearly prepared for a challenge. Ularid was not afraid, he had survived a full Shardbearer duel only days previously and a being made out of Straw should prove no challenge, even if he was working with Jumae III. This battle would not be fought with Shards, but with clean honest steel. Straw agreed with the unspoken sentiment, drawing a common blade from the table in front of him. Somehow running towards him on legs lacking in muscles or bone, Straw swung his first blow at Ularid. This effigy was skilled, Ularid thought, though far from the level of swordsmanship the real Gavilar had attained. Ularid deflected the first blow with a counterstroke from his short sword and plunged the longer blade into his enemy’s left shoulder. This caused no apparent injury. No blood poured from the wound and Strawappeared not to feel pain. This wasn’t completely unexpected, but Ularid was still not totally prepared for the riposte that slammed into his simple steel plate, denting it. He staggered backwards, resolving to be more careful. He would have to destroy Straw utterly to be sure of killing him. As Ularid set his feet in preparation for his next attack, Brightlord Jumae III strolled out of his tent, bedecked in the elegant emerald Plate that had previously belonged to Tleir and carrying the graceful curved Blade that Tintallë had nearly murdered him with. Ularid shuddered a bit at the memory, but Jumae didn’t seem to be immediately hostile. Indeed, the full Shardbearer was pointing his weapon at Straw. The Blade sang through the air and cleaved Straw’s now insignificant weapon in twain. Continuing its arc, the Blade swang into Straw’s right arm and rebounded, leaving no mark in the straw. Ularid stared at the impact site, loosening his grip on his weapons. Surely this man couldn’t be wearing Plate under there, and even if he was, the Blade shouldn’t have reacted that way. Ularid knew firsthand that in a confrontation between Plate and Blade, the latter gave way first. Whatever force blocking the Blade hadn’t prevented his own steel sword, and so Ularid drove forward once more with both blades. Ularid tragically dies here. The die had been thrown, the bets had been placed, and the knife’s arc was nearing its completion. Failure was the result. Actions, and reactions, provocation followed by provocation. Blades dancing in the daylight, glinting in the sun. Mraize took a torch to the room, lighting the various records alight, before tossing it to the wall. There was a reason the Ghostbloods holed up in one of the few wooden sections of the war camps. All traces had to be destroyed. Executions, and swords at dawn. Nightly gambles, and daily mistakes. He slipped out of the building, even as the flames slithered through it, the tongues licking his feet as he left. A sacrifice had been made, a battalion for a single soldier. The fire made his eyes into ruby spheres, the stormlight of malice filling them. He climbed onto his horse, taking in the destruction as it spread through the marketplace. It would provide a cleanser of its own sort. A tragedy of a greater magnitude to distract from the multiple of smaller mistakes. A broad sword to cover a prinpick. Desperate times whispered of its necessity. He took his horse to a canter, avoiding the soldiers as they rushed to quench the flames. He was soon out of the warcamp, and onto the cold stone plains. He slipped a spanreed from his pouch, and turned it on. The connection made, he wrote four words, “Target Eliminated. Evacuating Location” He pulled his hood high, and slipped away. Amanuensis has been lynched! He was a Ghostblood Artifabrian with a pain knife, a half-Shard, a reverser, and a spanreed! Vote Count: Aman(1): Stink Straw(1): Straw The Nobles have won this game! Jumae III (STINK) has been crowned King of Alethkar and Straw was appointed Highprince. Master Spreadsheet The Ghostbloods The Victorious Dead Player List:
  3. Elend’s men had performed a near-unceasing vigil during the night, eyeing each of their neighbours with suspicion and keeping daggers underneath their pillows; another murder was anticipated. It was a tired and haggard force which therefore awoke the next day to the shocked realisation that the customary whittling of their number had not been effected; indeed, had not been attempted in the first place. Far from banishing the calls for collective action against a killer, however, such an occurrence only strengthened the resolve of the gutted inner circle which surrounded Elend Venture that one of their number should be held responsible for unmitigated treason against their leader, and the lack of a killing seemed to confirm the worst fears of a quieter group of advisors, which rose to protest the vocal role that Aname Plees had taken of late. What had before been seen as a necessary continuation of her influence in finding and subduing Vin had soured into suspicion that an elaborate ruse had been practised on them all. So it was that Ford Prefect, along with Snip and Abe, rose against Aname, seeking to quickly dispatch her before serious retaliation could be considered. However, as the day had grown long in the midst of the heated debate, the snowy owl with which Aname had a natural affinity woke from its long slumber in the dark recesses of the room, sensing the approach of night. Upon viewing danger to Aname, Heer Kilyal II sprang from his perch, alighting on Ford’s head and driving his claws into his skull. Abe sprinted towards Ford, attempting to rescue him or drive away the feathered ball of fluff which was beginning to crush Ford’s head in between its talons, but tripped and landed facefirst on the long, trailing carpet which spanned the length of the room, which Aname had kicked into his path hurriedly. Two coins fell from his pocket, landing on opposite sides, and Abe sensed...disappointment?...coming from the object. Meanwhile, Snip, standing nearby, reacted instinctively; his instincts as a Hazekiller, honed from decades of training, had him snatch a nearby spear and ram it through Aname as soon as the owl began attacking Ford. Spinning, he pointed the spear at the white-feathered creature, but it had already released Ford’s corpse, and appeared to be hopping around with a paper in its beak. Snip snatched it out of the dull bird’s mouth, and read it to the quieted room. “I, Jastes Lekal, hereby allow these four men: Ford Prefect, Senn Conrad III, ‘Zane the Mad,’ and Doma, to access any aid within Luthadel which they should require in the process of handing me the city. If you see this letter and obey me, keep silent at my command. I am coming soon.” Dropping the paper, he crumpled to the ground in front of Aname’s freshly killed corpse, in remorse and relief. The threat was over. Now to rebuild. Lumgol was lynched! She was a Elend’s Loyalist Tineye 2! Furamirionind was lynched! She was a Lekal’s Subordinate Rioter 2! Lum (2): Fura, Snip Fura (2): Coop, Lum All of Jastes Lekal’s men have been driven out of the city, and with Zane and Vin neutralised, Elend’s Loyalists have won the day. My apologies for a slightly rushed aftermath writeup. Joe is busy working on something very large; meanwhile, I’m in need of sleep, and the dead doc is distracting me. (Not that I’m complaining, it’s fun. ) A more complete writeup, along with a general reflection on how the game went, will be coming within the next few days. Until then, a few special thanks, and the doc links: First, to @Alvron for IMing, as well as @Elbereth who helped me make a few calls on balance and was generally wonderful to discuss the game with until real life prevented her from checking in as much. Both were fun spectators, and you can find our discussion here. Second, to my co-GM @A Joe in the Bush. His help was invaluable with writeups, and though work and busy-ness also took him out of the picture later in the game, he continued to pitch in where he could. He deserves all the upvotes you can find to give him. More importantly, however, he served as the Gatekeeper of the Dead, Kelsier, and the largest of the four secrets in the game. His role was mainly to be able to pass on short messages from the dead, and to troll and make people paranoid. He accomplished both wonderfully. You may access his realm, the realm of the dead, here. (Said realm also describes the final two secrets, Alv’s Carpet and Kelsier, for those interested.) Third, to the Mistborn. @_Stick_ and @Mailliw73 were both highly active and committed players, and though they were caught early, the silver-tongued speech of Maill and the ingenuity of Stick’s plans bought them a few extra turns. While they were ultimately unable to clinch victory, I thank them both for their dedication to the roles I gave them, and admire the guile they demonstrated in their use of actions, especially with Maill’s pet OreSeur. Here you may find their conversation. Fourth, to the Eliminators. As with the Mistborn, they were all active and driven, and made the most of their circumstances despite a few poor turns of fortune. Particularly, the work which @Steeldancer put into finding Zane, the stalling efforts of @Devotary of Spontaneity and @Rathmaskal which denied the Mistborn their victory, and the distancing and perseverance of @Furamirionind towards the end were a joy to watch unfold and brought the Subordinates to the cusp of victory. Their planning is every bit as good as the Mistborn’s, and I thank them for their consistent activity and dedication to the game, even when dead. Here is their doc. Finally, to the village, congratulations and thank you for playing. While I shan’t tag all of you, I ought to make note of @Araris Valerian for tolerating being the first person lynched (again...), @Elandera and @Lumgol for being active voices towards the end of the game after many of the more active villagers had died in the first few cycles, and @Cadmium Compounder and @Amanuensis for sticking with the game consistently despite IRL obligations cluttering up their time. To close off, I’d like to say that it’s my hope and pleasure as a GM to provide a fun game for all of you, and that it’s my wish that I followed through on that commitment here. Final Player List:
  4. The dwindling party huddled around a small cooking fire, rubbing their hands from the cold in silence. Behind them, the broken fortifications of earth announced the Blight’s presence here, its foul tendrils slowly creeping towards the camp the nine remaining men of the expedition had set up. Cookpots and other items previously carried in bundles on each man’s back were now hanging from the horses’ saddles, their riderless forms an ominous guard against the terrors that came with the setting of the sun. Strange creatures that Moiraine Sedai had testified came from a Forsaken, Aginor, who she believed was among them. Each man shivered at the thought. It was bad enough to contemplate the Forsaken loose to begin with, but the idea that they were within the camp itself was terrifying to the nine that remained—who could face a Forsaken in open combat? Or in any way, for that matter? And there was the matter of the Blight itself. How long before their entire camp—and the Eye with it—was breached? The Green Man’s fortifications were gone, and the Eye itself undefended. A gentle breeze stirred the half-rotted treetops and flared the fire to a sudden brightness. The flash of light clearly illuminated the face of one Brendan Vallerune. The gleeman had come along, ostensibly to be at the center of new stories being woven by the Pattern, but everybody in the camp knew his attachment to the boys from Emond’s Field. Seeing the morose looks they were casting at the ground, he stood up slowly. Procuring a knife from beneath his sleeve, he tossed it up, deftly catching it by the handle as it dropped. A second and third followed, the knives seemingly issuing from thin air, rather than whatever compartments the gleeman had beneath his patched cloak. As the fourth and fifth knives were added to the circle, their juggling motion enrapturing Rand and Mat, Vallerune suddenly pivoted. As quickly as they had entered the circle, all five knives spun out, heading straight for Nikel Fain. And stopped, a hair's breadth from his neck. The knives collided, but none fell to the ground. Or touched Fain, for that matter. Rand’s skin prickled, feeling an unknown power being used, and sudden intakes of breath were audible around the circle, hands flying to sword and dagger hilts. Mat clutched his ruby-hilted dagger from Shadar Logoth, looking ready to jump at any man who moved. For his part, Vallerune’s face was stark white, gazing at Fain in amazement. He forced out words, though. “That man...the sorcerer...whatever he is, he is Padan’s Fain son, and a he’s a Darkfriend just as his father!” Lars stood, facing Nikel. “Do you deny this charge, my fellow warrior?” Fain smiled. Drawing himself up to his full height, his eyes shone in the dull firelight, his hand going to his sword-hilt with a speed that shocked Rand. His voice was thick, slurred, but mocking all the same. “So, it seems one of you ragged lot has the capacity to think,” he sneered. “It is, however, far too late. I have come with the Blight to destroy this place—and all of you who dare defy the Great Lord of the Dark.” The fire blazed up, its flames reaching above the heads of the company. Through them raced five daggers, guided by flows of Air deftly woven. When the flames plummeted to mere glowing coals, plunging the open land into darkness, Brendan Vallerune was dead, five daggers embedded in him before he hit the hard turf. As Lars shouted something, and the sound of a drawn sword was heard, Rand was halfway up the steep hill, heading for the Eye. The last hope against whatever faced them now. The din of clashing swords behind him lent wings to his feet. Lars had no time to think. Upon hearing Fain’s pronouncement, his sword flew out of its sheath, and he jumped at the Darkfriend with the energy of desperation. Fain seemed surprised, and he was slow to react, pivoting towards Lars with the tip of his sword. Lars’ sword slid off the edge of Fain’s, but the Warrior’s momentum sent his bulk crashing into the other man. The two tumbled in a heap, swords useless as the pair rolled across the coals of the fire. Fain yelped, being crushed between Lars and heat, but managed to extricate himself, rising with startled and pained gasps. His coat was burnt from the flames, and his ribs were likely broken from Lars slamming into him, but he would live. Grimly, he set his feet, prepared to take the Warrior on. Why hadn’t “Miumpounder” channelled to interfere yet? He shook his head. He could not afford to let such thoughts distract him. He had defeated too many foes conventionally to begin relying on channellers now. Advancing with sword-tip forward, still coughing up blood—his ribs were definitely broken—Fain launched into a series of attacks, flowing from one form to the next. Unlike others, he had never bothered to set to memory all the stances and attacks the men of the Borderlands used. But he intuited his way through them. A slow, momentum-building series of slashes was met with quick thrusts from Fain, halting the assault bearing down on him. He countered with a sweep under Lars’ legs, which he parried before Fain could take his legs off, then a two-handed overhand blow that swept to the side at the last second, which Fain barely saw in time to block. Driven back in a circle, he quickly stabbed at Lars’ arm, drawing blood. Snarling, the man leapt forward again, a relentless assault that drove Fain back towards the fire, slowly but inexorably. Lars was clearly the superior swordsman, and Fain was bleeding in a dozen places where his sword had grazed him. The Warrior’s sword appeared to his eyes as a circling wheel of light, one he could only counter, not drive away. Thrust, parry, slash, one flowing into the next, and with a mesmerising fluidity Fain managed to ward them off. He could feel his limbs growing tired, though. It was time for a change in tactics. When Lars disengaged for a brief moment, a momentary pause that served only as an opportunity for him to regroup and execute a final attack, Fain flung himself backward, using every remaining scrap of energy to vault himself over the fire. Switching his sword to his right hand only, still exhausted but set with a grim determination to finish Lars, he re-engaged. The warrior’s two-handed stroke easily batted aside Fain’s sword, and rose again for a killing blow. However, Fain had not been idle. With his free left hand, he whipped his sheath out of his belt, connecting it with the side of Lars’ head. Falling, dazed, he never saw Fain’s sword dart, impaling the middle of his chest as his own sword dropped from numb fingers. He never saw anything again. Evelyn faced the shadow across from the fire. She had never imagined that the Aiel, who had sent her across the Dragonwall to seek out He Who Comes With the Dawn, would have placed her in a situation as horrid as this. She had found the Car’a’carn—along with Shadowrunners and Aes Sedai, of course—but she had no way of protecting him. Worse, those others who had been planted in “Emond’s Field,” the absurd name these wetlanders had given their hold in the forests and mountains, were apparently seeking to sabotage the efforts of the Car’a’carn to eliminate Shadowspawn, an offence Evelyn could not countenance. However, her place was not to directly interfere in affairs, having broken her spears and renounced her status as a Maiden years ago. As such, she chose to avoid confrontation. Sticking to the shadows and waiting to see the true countenance of the man across from her, his face cloaked in shadow, seemed a wiser course of action in an excursion in which everything else seemed to have gone wrong when direct action had been taken. Suppressing a wince as the fool gleeman arose, no doubt to perform one of his simple juggling tricks, Evelyn resigned herself to another night of speaking with the Shadowrunner across from her. She was befuddled; why was she not killed by the Shadow’s forces for knowing one of their number? She leaned over the fire, speaking softly to her unknown companion. “Why am I not finished yet?” she muttered, readying flows of Air to immobilise him with saidar. A wolfish grin spread across the man’s mouth, lit by the uneven light of the fire. “Because you posed no threat, even when we needed concealment. But the time for concealment is past. I am trusted, and you…you will be dead.” The fire suddenly roared, and the bulky man’s face was illumined: Miumpounder, the cobbler from Emond’s Field. A man she had suspected, but never thought—well, who ever did think their closest companions were Shadowrunners? As the gleeman’s daggers flew back towards him, guided by the hand of the man facing her, Evelyn no longer looked to see if Vallerune was dead. A male channeler, potentially a Forsaken, faced her. Her flows of Air became Spirit, and she slid a shield between Miumpounder and the One Power. Utter shock registered on his face for one brief, beautiful second. “Aiel wilder channellers?” he stammered, sounding more like a statement than a question, and then Evelyn felt her shield shattered as if a giant hammer had smashed into it. Recoiling from her shock, she screamed, without shame; for who could face the Forsaken alone? The Car’a’carn had wisely fled, but another figure seemed to draw near to her. Keisa—a Borderlander—had changed somehow. Was changing, into an enormous living tree, its leaves and branches enfolding Miumpounder, who was crushed within the viselike grip of the...Green Man? That was the wetlanders’ name for him, and he had somehow been Keisa the entire time? Evelyn shook her head in wonderment, but had little time to waste. The Forsaken—Aginor, judging by the twisted features—was trapped, and she would take advantage while she could. Scrabbling for her belt knife, she drew it, then froze at a snuffling behind her. One of Aginor’s immense, twisted creatures snarled at her with open teeth, and almost seemed to be...sniffing? The Forsaken gurgled, no doubt a command to attack, but the beast was still for the time being, unable to decipher his master’s instructions through the chokehold the Green Man maintained. Backing up slowly, as she would with a wolf or bear, Evelyn set her knife in its sheath in the ground. The Creature seemed to turn, looking away, and Aginor’s face became purple with fury, or perhaps simply lack of breath. His finger squirmed out from the mass of leaves, and pointed directly at Evelyn. A flash of light, and she frowned. Nothing seemed changed about her. She rubbed her hands, and started in surprise. They were...slick...with some sweet-smelling liquid, yellow in colour, that she realised now coated her entire skin. Honey? The Creature turned, its eyes suddenly intrigued, and sniffed the air. Evelyn froze. Slowly, excruciatingly so, the beast turned towards her. And lunged. The Green Man averted his eyes as the Wise Woman was consumed, turning them instead to Aginor, an ancient foe, who finally lay trapped within his arms. Slowly—the man’s entire channelling and physical efforts went towards resistance—he began to choke the Forsaken, his roots and shoots and vines forming an ever-contracting noose about his neck. Aginor squirmed helplessly, unable to halt Nature. The forces that held back the Blight would kill this agent of it. Triumphantly holding up his prisoner, like an offering to the Creator, the squirming of his prey an exhilaration, the Green Man did not notice a tickling sensation touch his ankle. He noticed, but did not take heed, when it enveloped his leg. He would not care about the Blight, which had crept up on his domain, until its Creepers had devoured him, setting Aginor down on a bed of rotted leaves as his throat began to work again, desperately gasping for air. The Green Man’s corpse was quickly devoured by the poisonous flora, a longstanding enemy killed at last, and the Blight swept over the remaining distance to the Eye. A bush in the corner seemed oddly resistant to the Blight, Creepers and tendrils dying as they approached it. Aginor had gone up to the Eye, but Shirley U. Jest, the final Friend of the Dark, went over to investigate it. Primarily responsible for allowing the Blight to overrun the Eye, Jest would not tolerate any outposts enduring the Shadow’s advance. Strolling through a carpet of rotted vegetation, Jest smiled mirthlessly when he saw the bush clearly. Joseph stood there, sandwiched within the bush’s central branches, frantically hacking away at the advancing Blight with his belt knife. Jest strolled up, and delivered a solid kick to Joseph’s hand, knocking the knife clean out. Leaving a terrified man to be torn apart by the poison of the Great Lord’s touch, he strolled away, seeking the Eye. All the Friends of the Dark would see the Dragon destroyed there, and eliminate their final obstacle in seizing the world for the Great Lord. Inside, flashes of light announced al’Thor’s presence, and Jest quickened his step. Nikel Fain did as well, beside him. Neither wished to miss the end of their last enemy. Rand gasped, out of breath, as he stumbled into the cavern of the Eye. Had he not already been winded, the sight would have taken his breath away, but as it was, he stood for a moment in numb admiration, gazing at the reservoir of saidin with wonderment. The crystals, though half-dimmed, still cast an eerie yet beautiful light in the shadowy cavern. Power-wrought, no doubt, yet that was not what drew his eye. The liquid within the well, clear yet seeming to swirl and mingle reflections, was the essence of the male half of the True Source. An immense source of power with the capacity to enable its channeller to achieve greatness—or to overwhelm and consume him. Moiraine had cautioned him that seizing saidin would not be easy, and that she could not teach him to use it. Well, she could not teach him to do anything now, and his friends were endangered, perhaps dead. The sounds of conflict and screaming had died down, leaving a dead silence that seemed to be filled with soft footsteps and rustling, damp leaves. With revulsion, Rand saw a man mount the hill, his face scarred and warped beyond mortal recognition, flanked by Nikel Fain and Shirley Jest. Desperately, unwillingly, gladly, for the first time in months, he formed the Flame and the Void. As his emotions burned away, the light filling the Void seemed to be stronger than usual. Rand hesitated one last time. He had never before consciously seized the Source, never tried to touch the tainted One Power that had driven the Dragon and his Hundred Companions raving mad. But, as he reminded himself, he had no choice in the matter. Reaching into the light, he discovered it was actually two lights; one, the saidin he knew, glory and life besides sickness and midden, and the second a new source, untainted and immense, yet not unending like the first. Yet it was clean. Desperately, he reached for it. And found his way blocked. On the far end of the cavern, Aginor smiled with triumph, his skin seeming to glow as he drew in the saidin, even as he used some to block Rand off from the Source. Secure in the Void, Rand scrabbled for tainted saidin, his mind floundering against the slick barrier which cut him off from the Source. Growling, he seized his sword, whipping it out of its sheath and lunging towards Aginor. Bright white fire, brighter than the sun, sprang from the Forsaken’s hands. Even as they averted their eyes, the purple afterimage still seared into the eyes of Jest and Fain, and the midnight sky became as day. The bar of white fire continued, stretched back through the Pattern even as it groaned with the thread of a ta’veren being burnt out further and further back. Still onwards it burnt, back, back. Gone was al’Thor in Caemlyn, Rand climbing a palace wall. Gone him in Shadar Logoth, Mordeth visited by two ta’veren and not three. Gone Emond’s Field at Bel Tine, gone his years as a sheepherder, all gone, until the saidin at the well was used up and Rand al’Thor was naught but a memory, and the Pattern groaned with the burning of his thread. The designs of the Wheel, of the Creator, were foiled. A new vessel would need to be chosen. Many leagues hence, a boy named Olver had his past rewritten, the ripples across the Pattern destroying even as they attempted to compensate for its central ta’veren being removed. A new vessel for Lews Therin Telamon has been selected. Yet the repercussions were great, and the Shadow triumphed even as the Blight burned away the Eye, ever closer to Shai’tan being unleashed on the world. Without a proper Dragon to face him. Aginor laughed from the Spine of the World, uncaring of his vision burned away by the brightness of his balefire, uncaring of anything save his future status as Nae’blis. Two other Darkfriends stood with him, exulting in their triumph, and only waiting their recognition from the Great Lord. The trio made its way away from the ruined Eye, picking through Creepers to report their triumph to the Pit of Doom in Shayol Ghul. And for once, no spikes would brush their heads descending. MR32 is over! Mark IV was attacked, but survived. However, as the Blight’s triumph was numerically certain, the forces of the Shadow have achieved both primary and secondary win conditions. My thoughts on this game can be found in TL;DR form in the spec doc, which is linked below, but I intend to make a very thorough post covering balance in a few days after the holiday craze at my house has subsided. Speaking of which, that’s why this aftermath took two Ages of the Wheel to get done. Sorry about that. I hope it was worth the wait. I’d like to thank all of you for playing, as I’m incredibly grateful to each of you that volunteered your time to try this crazy experiment of a game out. Docs: Outside of Time Servants of the Great Lord Warriors of Fal Dara Emond’s Fielders Moiraine’s Circle [master spreadsheet to come in a bit] Final Playerlist: 1. Steeldancer (Ookla the Positive) as Ookla the Positive, an orphan with a cheery outlook on life. Rand al’Thor, Moiraine’s Circle 2. randuir as Evelyn, an Aiel Wise Woman and well-wisherEmond’s Fielder 3. Karnatheon (Ookla the Ring) as Brendan Vallerune, a gleeman totally unrelated to Jeordwyn Moiraine’s Circle 4. Cadmium Compounder (Ookla the Duck) as Miumpounder, a cobbler with an abiding hatred of Altarans Aginor, Emond’s Fielder 5. xinoehp512 (Ookla the Phoenix) as Alkoo, a reclusive Ogier tucked away in encyclopaedias Roleless 6. Amanuensis as Nikel Fain, a man hell-bent on killing his father (totally normal)Hardy Fal Dara Warrior 7. Droughtbringer as Month-Long Drought, a prickly old noblewoman who only eats dried fruit Roleless 8. Rathmaskal as Jeordwyn Dormond, an Illianer gleeman who juggles knives through his enemies Lan Moiraine’s Circle 9. Devotary of Spontaneity (Ookla the Heretical) as Rhodin, a countercultural Aiel whose views are about to go mainstreamPerrin Aybara, Emond’s Fielder 10. Young Bard (Ookla the Unprepared) as Jancey, a reluctant soldier who signed up to obey his father’s will Warrior of Fal Dara 11. Mark IV as Lars, an inquisitive young nobleman Hardy Fal Dara Warrior 12. Snipexe (Ookla the Sceptical) as Exepins, a scribe who will eventually admit to the superiority of British spellings Hardy Fal Dara Warrior 13. Furamirionind as Keisa, a grizzled veteran of the Borderland Wars, with a scar on his forehead to show for it Green Man 14. Hemalurgic Headshot (Ookla of the East) as Skern Mundy, a man from the East with many skills Roleless 15. Ark1002 (Ookla the Dragon Reborn) as Shifting Shadows, a shifty, shadowy Wolfbrother Emond’s Fielder; Fal Dara Warrior 16. A Joe in the Bush as Joseph, a man who has mastered the art of squeezing into very small spaces in bushes Roleless 17. MetaTerminal (Ookla the Cited) as Elak Dehlin, a merchant with severe paranoia about the One Power Moiraine’s Circle 18. BrightnessRadiant as Fifi Balthamel 19. Mr Doctor as Antor Vadenfort, a Illianer Warder without an Aes Sedai Moiraine 20. Sart as Shirley U. Jest, a Cairhienen noblewoman who takes life far too seriously Agent of the Blight
  5. The Terris people were dwindling. Half the Synod had been slaughtered, between the Spiked killings and the justice meted out by poison at night, or a mob by day. Those that remained had retreated, seeking to manoeuvre their way into controlling the political influences of the Synod, fearful and distrustful of their own number. Initial confidence that ousting Valwyn had purified the Synod had dropped, and Citona Vinid, who had been helping Olaf administrate the legislative body, frantically defended herself against accusations from Ethin Hallil and Tee Mai, who were convinced that Vinid had unsavoury ties to Zihel. For his part, Olaf mainly sat back and watched the proceedings with a grim expression. Sitting and whispering with Marne, whose advice he valued above all the other members, Olaf assessed the men in front of him. He recognised the flaws in each, but upon a more thorough examination, he found himself agreeing with Marne about the people within the Synod. They were misguided, and made mistakes. They had been mistaken to oust Marne from his old position. They had been mistaken to entrust Olaf, a newcomer, with the survival of the last free Feruchemists in the Dominances. And their squabbling, now, was certainly not ideal. However, Olaf now felt, as he stood next to Marne, that the man had been right about his fellow Synod members; despite their infighting, each truly wanted what was best for the Terris, and as Olaf saw it, his confidence and belief in the Synod began to reform itself. These were, truly, the greatest men and women in the Terris community. Olaf simply had to unite them, and refocus them on those outside their council. As Olaf sat in thought, he saw Tee Mai on the edges of his vision, who was approaching Vinid, hand raised to strike at the Ferring. “That’s enough!” bellowed Olaf from the swivel chair atop the raised platform on which he sat. Tee Mai lowered his hand sheepishly, looking up at Olaf with guilt, yet a little bit of resentment, within his eyes. Resentment will not do, thought Olaf. Raising his voice, he addressed the small Synod. “Your bickering is tiring me,” he announced, “and sitting here arguing amongst ourselves will accomplish little. You are each leaders of this community, and are responsible for its survival; projecting an image of doubt and paranoia will not help the Terris, especially with our numbers as dangerously low as they are. You have each questioned the merits of your fellow Synod members a hundred times; is it not likely that they are merely exhausted and worn out, as each of us are, as opposed to being secret Infiltrators?” Olaf let the question hang in the air. Marne, however, spoke from beside him. “You have known each of the people in this room for your entire lives, with the exception of Olaf,” he told the Synod. “I would be inclined to trust them after that time. Perhaps there are Spiked in this chamber; however, it is far better to look elsewhere first, and give the Terris leadership in these chaotic times.” The three Synod members on the ground glanced at each other. Olaf could tell that relations had not been fully restored, not yet. But the three would help him and Marne to find the last Spiked, despite their mistrust. And right now, that was all Olaf cared about. Each of its members uncertain of what the day held, yet determined to face it, the Terris Synod emerged from their meeting-house in Tathingdwen for what would be the last time, a unified front presented to the body of Terris gathered below them. The body of Terris gathered below them had cornered Ehereman Tresni. The last Spiked attempted to defend himself against the accusations of a Stick, which was unhappy after the burning of the Tautological Society, but his pleas fell on deaf ears. The Terris had found out too much about him; his associations with Zihel and Valwyn had proven too strong to ignore. His only hope, now, was to convince the crowd that the Synod member Citona Vinid was guilty, and not he. That hope was dashed as the Synod walked down the steps from the meeting-house, almost marching as a single group. The message of unity was impossible to ignore, and from the looks of the members, they too were focused on destroying him. Tresni cursed the Lord Ruler, who had brought him to this barren northern wasteland to die. He cursed Olaf, for abandoning the entire mission, and Leidene, for ignoring it. He cursed the Spiked who had died before him, who had failed at their mission, leaving him to carry out the destruction of a sect of highly dangerous people on his own. Most of all, however, Tresni cursed himself. Cursed himself for his inability to kill Ethin Hallil the night before, with poison. Cursed himself for his failure to put his spying to good use when he had attempted to investigate the Steel squid. And cursed himself for cracking under the withering pressure of an examination by the remaining Terris. Tresni was not like the other Spiked sent in the mission. Valwyn worked in Pewter, making him the muscle of the group. HanTor was a sly talker, able to talk a crowd into almost anything. Zihel could potentially do anything, and had been made to counter Full Feruchemists. Of course, they had failed, too. Valwyn had been killed with strength, a sword passing through his neck; HanTor had not talked his way out of his death; and Zihel had ultimately been slaughtered by Marne. Tresni was made to be something else: a spy. Tin-enhanced senses allowing him to see the world around him, he was to gather information and use it to bring down the Synod. However, he, too, had now failed. As Olaf walked down the staircase, Tresni felt a deep resentment for the man build inside him. He had betrayed his fellows, worked to undermine the people with whom he had been sent, and had even talked his way into becoming the head of the organisation that was leading the efforts to find and kill the Lord Ruler’s chosen. Resentment steadily increased, fueling the fires of hatred. It was time to act. The startled Terris jumped aside as Tresni parted the crowd by laying about with the scabbard of his sword. Striding over to Olaf, the Windwhisperer slapped the man across the face with a metal gauntlet, who recoiled in surprise and pain. Recovering quickly, Olaf whipped the thin sword he carried out of its sheath, facing Tresni, who smiled. The challenge accepted, the remaining Terris hurriedly scrambled aside, creating a rough ring for the duel. Marne looked at Olaf, astonishment etched into every line of his face. Through persistent effort, the last Spiked had been cornered, and Olaf accepted a duel from him? Was the man insane, or did he have a death wish? He had seen Olaf fence, and while the man was certainly competent, Tresni had been Tathingdwen’s swordmaster for as long as he had been in the village, and was extremely skilled with the blade. Add to that the heightened senses and perceptions that Tin Feruchemy granted him… The duel began its course as a quick pattern of thrusts from Tresni that Olaf turned away with his blade, stepping aside to take a sweep at Tresni’s unprotected back. Anticipating this, Tresni pivoted, suddenly bringing his lightweight rapier down, whistling towards Olaf’s head. Clang! Olaf moved his sword into place just in time, parrying the attack and barely maintaining his footing. He stumbled and lowered his sword slightly, which was nicked from the impact. Tresni pressed his brief advantage, raining blows from every direction on his dazed opponent. Olaf parried them all, but he was at a nominal disadvantage, and had begun to tire, wilting under Tresni’s relentless assault. It was time to intervene here. Marne signaled to Ethin Hallil and Tee Mai, who nodded and drew their own swords, prepared to aid Olaf in his foolish endeavor. As they approached Olaf’s ragged form, however, the man snarled, lashing out with his rapier at the two men. “Leave Tresni to me!” he commanded, as the two frantically scurried away from his circling blade. Marne again shook his head at his friend’s stubbornness, watching Hallil and Mai retreat. It seemed as though Marne had only one course remaining: to intervene himself. Slipping between two of the Terris who were gazing at the match with intent eyes, Marne worked his way to the front of the small ring that had formed to act as a perimeter for the duel. The move perhaps took him five seconds, and those five seconds had clearly not gone well for Olaf. The enhanced physical senses of Tresni had clearly aided him, as the Windwhisperer seemed to see attacks before they even came. Viciously parrying an overhead slash from Olaf, which caused his arms to shake, Tresni quickly turned his blade and slammed the flat of it into Olaf’s face. Already kneeling, Olaf now collapsed completely onto the ground, the collective groans of the Terris rising from behind Marne to accompany Olaf’s fall. As Tresni raised his rapier one last time, grinning, Marne shuddered, fracturing himself into two parts. In a decision that took a split second, but had all the backing of a week of working with the man now lying prone and helpless, Marne tapped his steel instead of his pewter, rushing into the ring and throwing himself on top of Olaf. Straight into the path of the descending blade. Olaf’s face burned from the impact of a rapier. Crouched on the ground, he gingerly moved his right hand to his cheek, feeling the wet blood pooling there. Of all the ways he could have died, Olaf would not have thought that this would be it—a simple duel with a servant of the Lord Ruler in the most far-flung location in the Final Empire. Olaf cursed himself for his folly as Tresni’s blade ascended. He was no chivalrous knight of olden days, to fix the world with arranged duels and glorious feats of strength on the battlefield. He was an arsonist, a plotter, a man who specialised in the execution of unscrupulous deeds in the dark. And in a fair duel, there were no means with which to use those skills. As Tresni’s blade began to lower, Olaf only hoped that Marne could avenge his death. Little did he know the opposite would have to occur. Olaf saw Marne dart into the ring from the right, moving with the superhuman speed of a Steelrunner, and throw himself on top of Olaf. Olaf drew in a breath to scream at him for his idiocy, that he should be the one leading the Terris after this mess, when that air was driven from his lungs by the hard lump of one of Marne’s metalminds as the Full Feruchemist slammed into him, pinning him to the ground. Tresni’s sword completed its arc, slicing through Marne’s unprotected back. Olaf screamed as Tresni drew his sword away and Marne went limp, his friend’s death so sudden that he had not even been able to speak. Marne’s dead eyes gazed up at Olaf tenderly yet firmly, as if to say, You know what you must do. Olaf indeed did. Feeling the flames of fury feed his strength, Olaf snatched his rapier from the cobblestones, swinging it at Tresni with a powerful two-handed blow. The man parried, backpedaling and recovering swiftly with a thrust at Olaf’s side, which the Count was forced to block. Exchanging a series of quick blows with Tresni, Olaf came to the realisation that raw fury alone would not enable him to defeat such a skilled opponent. Tresni was too good a swordmaster to be bested by an untrained Count, especially an exhausted and wounded one. A new plan began to form in Olaf’s head, amidst his frantic attacks and desperate defenses. As Tresni made a slice at Olaf’s midsection, sword held in a two-handled grip, Olaf decided that now was the time to attempt his gambit. Dancing past the blade, Olaf switched his sword to his right hand alone, extending his body fully in a lengthened thrust. It was a terribly impractical move, leaving his left side completely defenceless. Tresni saw this, sidestepping Olaf’s thrust and returning it with one of his own, straight at Olaf’s arm. Prepared as he was for the impact, the pain of it made Olaf howl, the cold steel biting into his arm with the heat of a thousand fires. Twisting his arm, Olaf allowed the sword to pierce deeper into him despite every fibre of him telling him to let Tresni extract it, which the Spiked, seeing the trap that had been laid for him, was frantically attempting to do. Olaf clung on, gritting his teeth, and slammed his sword into Tresni’s undefended heart, even as the man yanked his sword out of Olaf’s arm with his last effort. As both collapsed onto the pavement, Olaf with pain and exhaustion, and Tresni with death, a ragged cheer went up from the Synod, which instantly subsided as the memory of Marne’s death and Olaf’s wounds hit them. As Olaf began to drift out of consciousness, the Synod members rushed forward, bathing Olaf’s head in cold water to keep him awake, and binding his wounds with the cloth available. The count’s fury began to return to him as he looked around Tathingdwen, with its pristine buildings and cheery storefronts, and remembered that corruption and rot had lived and thrived in those same buildings. He turned to Hallil. “How quickly can you give Marne a decent burial?” Hallil frowned. “Fairly quickly. Why? Is there something that needs to be done?” Olaf stood up, instantly feeling lightheaded. Tee Mai protested, attempting to sit him back down, but Olaf merely slapped his hand away, leaning on his rapier for support. “Yes. There is. The Spiked are gone, but this city is now vulnerable to the Lord Ruler. Moreover, it has sheltered evil for far too long. Gather enough supplies, find Leidene, and get every man in this city out of here.” “Where?” Hallil asked, with mounting trepidation. “Anywhere, as long as it’s sufficiently hidden from the Lord Ruler,” Olaf replied irritably. “Leidene can sort out the details, and you can send Citona with her. He’s the new Synod head, by the way. Regardless, once Marne is buried, we are razing this city.” Two hours later, with Marne buried and the Synod evacuated, Olaf stood outside his friend’s old house, where it had all begun. He had nearly burnt the structure down that time. Now, he would complete the job. Raising his lit torch, he ran its flames along the edge of the wooden structure, watching as they took hold and spread. Olaf felt a tear well in his eye as he thought of his friend, but he quickly blinked it away. He could not afford to be sentimental. Casting one last look at the burning building, he moved on to the next with renewed fury, setting it alight. And the next, and the next. With each flame kindled, Olaf felt a little more of his frustration and anger burn away, releasing it in a great show of fire. He continued his work ceaselessly, for hours, ignoring his dizziness and wounds, focusing on purging his anger. Soon, between his work and that of the Synod, all the main buildings of Tathingdwen were ablaze. The natural spread of the flames, which were fanned and buffeted by the light afternoon breeze, would soon consume the whole city. Signaling for the Synod to rejoin the other refugees, Olaf took the longer road, moving back towards Luthadel and Keep Ffnord. A letter slipped to Jest, who had joined up with the Synod in the general confusion, should be enough to ensure that Citona Vinid took ascendancy over the Synod, and that the Terris people would live to fight the Lord Ruler another day. As for his own part, Olaf could no longer be with the Synod. Passing down the lonely northern road, he spared a single glance back at the city, and its refugees, then slipped quietly away, his flight masked by the long shadows of a setting sun. For their part, the Terris only saw a lone, dark figure, weeping as he wheezed, walk away towards the Central Dominance, his tall and foreboding frame passing slowly into the distance. Marne’s death opened up some intriguing options for Leidene. As the killer of two Spiked infiltrators, including a Full Feruchemist, he had acquired quite a collection of spikes which were now left unguarded. Leidene currently only possessed two spikes: a bronze one through her ribcage and a pewter spike between her shoulder blades. If she gained ownership of Marne’s trove, she too could have most of the powers of a Full Feruchemist, though she would have to search elsewhere for spikes granting Feruchemical atium. That would be enough for now, she reassured herself, as she began to pile up her nonessential belongings in the middle of her house. Furniture, incriminating documents, the discarded bones of the Sparker HanTor had replaced, and all the corpses she had managed to collect. Setting the pyre alight, she smiled. Helping the Spiked infiltrate the city would soon prove to have been very profitable. Leidene stepped out of her burning home to find the remainder of Tathingdwen similarly engulfed in flames. Count Olaf venting his sorrow, she assumed. With displeasure, she noted that the fire had already reached Marne’s house. She hobbled as fast as she could towards the doomed dwelling, wishing Olaf had waited a little bit longer before putting on his pyromaniacal display. Arriving inside the circular house with the fire raging within, Leidene began rummaging through Marne’s trinkets. He had only killed Zihel the previous night, so surely the spikes would be somewhere obvious. No such luck. They weren’t on his desk, or his wardrobe, or underneath his bed. The blaze began to thoroughly lick the walls of the house, which groaned, and the interior temperature rose precipitously. Leidene ignored this; the compulsion to claim her prize was too strong. She would not leave while the spikes had yet to be found, even as the fire burned through the walls and began to consume the entire house. The decorative rug, courtesy of Valwyn, that covered the entire floor began to smoke as a burning ember landed on it. Soon, the rug was nothing but food for the inferno, and as the flames began to devour her, the pain broke through her spike-fueled desire. She screamed, tapping gold to heal herself as she made for an exit. It took almost her entire goldmind, but she was able to escape the conflagration before she could be reduced to a skeleton. The house was not so lucky. Leidene stared numbly at the wreckage. She had been so close, but Count Olaf’s rampant arson had cost her everything. Desperately, she stumbled towards the flaming wreckage. Deprived of fuel, the bonfire had moved on, leaving utter devastation in its wake. The rug had burned to a crisp, and the wood had been severely charred. Leidene began to brush aside the debris, vaguely hoping she would encounter the spikes now that the obstruction had been cleared away. To her surprise, she found something; the outline of a stone door previously hidden under the rug. She tried to open it, but it was much to heavy for an ordinary person to lift, especially one who could only put her weight on one leg. She was about to give up for a second time when she heard a voice calling her name. She turned to see Ethan Hallil, the SCUBA instructor and one of her fellow Synod members. “What do we do?” he cried out. “Count Olaf has gone mad!” “Gather the remaining villagers,” Leidene responded. “Have them head down the river towards Torinost, we’ll be safe from the Lord Ruler and his minions there while we build ourselves a new homeland. Before you go though, could you open this door for me?” “Door?” asked Ethan, confused. He walked closer to Leidene, and his gaze found the stone door. “Ah yes, hold on,” he said as he tapped pewter. With his enlarged muscles, he was able to wedge his fingers in the slit at the end of the door and throw it open. Underneath was a pit holding all thirteen spikes Marne had claimed for his own. “That’s good, now hurry! See to your people,” Leidene commanded. “Are you sure it’s safe to leave those spikes out there in the open?” Ethan inquired. “I’ll take care of it, just go. I’ll catch up with you soon,” Leidene replied, Soothing Ethan’s fear and suspicion. Ethan took off. Once he was no longer looking, Leidene gathered the thirteen spikes. Hurriedly, she impaled herself with the relevant ones, gaining new Feruchemical powers with each thrust. Iron, steel, tin, pewter, zinc, brass, copper, and bronze became hers to command, though most of those abilities would be useless without the corresponding metalminds and time spent storing. The two spikes making up the Kandra blessing, along with the duplicate spikes granting gold, zinc, and iron Feruchemy, went into her bag. Her task complete, Leidene moved on, trailing after Ethan’s retreating form. Xinoehp512 was lynched! He was a Spiked Tin Ferring (Windwhisperer)! Marne was killed! He was a Village Full Feruchemist, and was a member of the Synod! Count Olaf has withdrawn! He was an Arsonist, and a member of the Synod! Citona Vinid (phattemer) is now head of the Synod! Leidene has broken from the Lord Ruler, and is carving her own path! She was a Spiked Full Feruchemist! All Spiked are dead or fled! That means the village has won! Congratulations to the villagers, and well played to the Spiked. It was a pretty close game. I will have more thoughts coming later (likely about three essay’s worth) but for now I’d just like to thank everyone who signed up to play. This game wouldn’t have been so enjoyable to run without each of you involved. On that note, I’ll praise Devotary more effusively later, but she was an amazing co-GM, and a great help with all parts of the game. Finally, I’d like to apologise for the delay in the posting of this cycle, which as stated before was due to technical difficulties. Hopefully it didn’t affect anyone too adversely. Docs/Spreadsheets: The Lord Ruler’s Chosen The Terris Synod The Citizenry of Tathingdwen Final Player List: 1. Rathmaskal as Laksam, an ash sweeper from the Eastern streets Village Steel Ferring 2. Xinoehp512 as Ereheman Tresni, a man with his priorities backwards Spiked Tin Ferring 3. Steeldancer as Steel, the fastest sculpture of a squid wrought entirely in steel in all of Tathingdwen Village Brass Ferring 4. Randuir as Zihel, a worldhopper looking for his twin brother Spiked Full Feruchemist 5. I think I am here as Itiah VI, a missionary on a mission Village Steel Ferring 6. Bort as Tee Mai, a tailor specialising in offensive clothing: Village Bronze Ferring 7. Cadmium Compounder as Ethin Hallil, a cadmium Feruchemist and SCUBA diver: Village Pewter Ferring 8. _Stick_ as Stick, President of the Tathingdwen Tautological Society of Tautology: Village Brass Ferring 9. Jondesu as Remart, a man back from vacation armed with vaguely ominous statements: Village Bronze Ferring 10. Kidpen as HanTor, a lonely Kandra that’s definitely not Spiked, nope Spiked Zinc Ferring 11. Elandera as Era, an old woman who claims to have been alive before the reign of the Lord Ruler Village Pewter Ferring 12. Snipexe as Snip, a fabric cutter in the local quilt shop Village Iron Ferring 13. Worldhopper from Yolen as Tarin, a Sparker with a wonderful, awful idea Village Zinc Ferring 14. Alvron as Izzy Dedyet, who is not dead, feels happy, and thinks she'll go for a walk Village Full Feruchemist 15. Phatterner as Citona Vinid, a seemingly faithful follower of the Lord Ruler: Village Zinc Ferring 16. Ark1002 as Kardik, a Full Feruchemist: Village Iron Ferring 17. Araris Valerian as Valwyn, an honest rug merchant Spiked Pewter Ferring; Rug Merchant 18. Coop772 as Irion, a Full Feruchemist with hidden potential Village Copper Ferring 19. Sart, a stuttering Nameless Village Iron Ferring Synod Members: Bort, Cadmium Compounder, phattemer, Araris Valerian, Coop772, Alvron
  6. The snow and the ash from the nearby and aptly named Ashmount, Tyrian, fell together in a swirling mesh of black and white. It made it even more difficult to see anything at a distance. After only a 15 meters, everything just looked like static on a television screen. But the people of Tyrian Falls didn't need to be able to see to know what was out there. Every year, like the worst alarm clock in history, they knew that another band of Koloss was steadily trudging towards them. And they knew all about the Spiked hiding in their midst, attempting to sabotage their preparations. You'd think that they'd all just leave, but for some strange reason, it seemed that they couldn't; as if they were cursed by some evil, unseen hand. As the snow and ash fell and an impending sense of doom settled onto the shoulders of the fair people of Tyrian Falls, they all stopped whatever they were doing to stand and curse the sky together: "Leave us alone, Metacognition!" Guess what everyone? It's that time of the year again! Three cheers for our second year here on the illustrious 17th Shard and it's been a great year, if I do say so myself. Thank you all for being a part of it and for making these games as amazing as they've been. Our little sub-forum here wouldn't be the same without all of you. So you guys all know what's coming; it's time for our Anniversary Game! Unfortunately, the Admins didn't get back to us in time about the Anonymous Accounts at this point in time, so we're going to see if maybe this time, the village of Tyrian Falls can get a little redemption. If the Spiked wind up winning again, I'm officially calling this village cursed! But before we get to that, I'd like to give you maniacs some updates as to a few things we're changing for our next year here and also some things to look forward to too! First up, with as many people as we have playing anymore and how many awesome people who have stepped up to GM games for us, we're updating the schedule for how and when the games will begin. The new schedule is in effect as of now. So what is the new schedule and how does it differ from our last schedule? I'm glad you asked! Before, the way we staggered games looked something like this: -LG1, QF1 in the middle of LG1, MR1 after QF1 finishes and as LG1 ends. LG2 starts after LG1 ends and the cycle continues. I did a simple graphic for it (not to scale by any means) a long time back that I'll include here: But, with how the subforum has grown, this is what we'll be working with going forward: Instead of setting the MRs and QFs schedules to be based on the LGs, they operate independently. QF1 is followed by MR1, which is followed by QF2 and so on. On the other hand, the LGs would stagger. LG1 would start, run for 5 cycles (this is just a starting number and we will adjust it if that seems like it is too long or too short of a delay) and then LG2 would start and repeat ad infinitum. As I did above, I did a quick visual of what we're looking at: We feel that this will make it so that there's not as long of a wait before someone gets to run their game. Which means we could probably use some more QF GMs, so if anyone has any ideas, feel free to sign up! Due to how this schedule is set up, it means that we won't be able to avoid holidays as much, but I think that will be a minor problem. If you have any questions or comments on the new schedule, please feel free to contact either myself, Wilson, or Gamma! That's the major news. We're discussing on reformatting a few of the threads to use them more effectively and you guys should be on the look out for something we're calling the SEAcropolis in the near future too! I think you guys will like what we have in mind for the future. Now, onto our second Anniversary Game! I'll be posting all the rules and roles and stuff below. Sign ups will last until the evening Dec. 25th. That's right, my Christmas present to all of you is your roles and alignment! This also allows us to circumvent the worst of the holiday distractions as well and leaves us with only a small bump once New Years rolls around, so this is as accessible as we could make it. So without further adieu: AG2: The Return of the Koloss! Oh no! Koloss have begun advancing on your little town, Tyrian Falls! Since The Lord Ruler died, they seem to be acting with a mind of their own. Unfortunately for you, your town is a way point between Fadrex City and Luthadel. That means you have a stockpile of metals, but that's probably why they targeted you in the first place. On the other hand, you have a large collection of metals. You might be able to hold them off, but it seems like someone (or a conspiracy of someones) seems to be undermining your defenses. Somehow, before the Koloss arrive, you have to rid your town of these dissenters; those that are spiked. Until then, you won't be able to mount an effective defense for your town. If you fail, everyone dies, so you better not fail! Factions: Some people within the town have been hiding a few secrets; some of them are Mistings, so you have help in your battle versus the forces of Ruin. Although some of them may be spiked. Why can't anything be easy? Roles: We'll be starting on a Night round (sorry to whomever likely gets killed before they even really get a chance to play!) This is due to the fact that that was how it was before and I think it will give people a chance to establish some RP before the game actually starts (which always helps make the write ups better, IMO). Order of Actions for the Night will be: -Smoker -Seeker -Lurcher -Coinshot/Kills Days will be 48 hours long (ending roughly around 1 AM EST unless this schedule needs to change). Nights will be 24 hours long. No hints will be given in the write ups. Allegiance and Roles will be reveal upon death. That should be about everything! If I missed something that you would like clarified, please, let me know either via PM or here in thread and I'll do my best to answer any questions. Let the games begin and again, thank you all for another great year! Quick Links:
  7. Winter is ending, snow falling hard all around. The mountain passes have been covered in snow, keeping you all stuck in the Duladel trading outpost you visited late in the season. Hopefully the winter will be short, but now, a new pressure has arisen. Mai, a lonely trader, not one to talk much, was found outside the outpost, flayed and sacrificed. You know the signs, Followers of the Jeskeri Mysteries are stuck in the outpost with you, making their sacrifices daily. Snowed in, you have no chance but to find them and kill them before they kill you. All Traders: Must submit one vote through a PM to the GM(Mailliw73), once during every cycle hour period. These votes will be made public at the end of the period, and the most voted for player will be sent to die in the snow. You may vote however you wish in the thread, but the vote received in the PM will be your official vote. Anyone who does not either talk to the Outpost’s Owner(the GM), come to the community dinner meetings, or meet with other traders for two consecutive days will freeze in their rooms. Follower of the Mysteries: The followers of the Jeskeri Mysteries must each send one vote for sacrifice via PM to the GM (Mailliw73) per cycle in addition to their normal vote. The most voted for player, in this fashion, will be sacrificed for their own mysterious purpose. Priest of Jesker: The Priest of Jesker is a learned man, and can identify the sacrifice of the Jeskeri Mysteries, having tried to root them out in the past. The Priest may investigate one other player per day (by contacting the GM) to learn if they are a follower of the Mysteries or not. Jindoeese Soldier: The Jindoeese Soldier is trained in the art of ChayShan and can guard one player at night. Anyone who attacks the trader whom the Soldier is guarding will be fought off and the protected trader will not die. Rulo: The Rulo is the fool who managed to get himself stuck in a trading outpost he had no business being in. He’s a bit kayana, so every night he scrawls a message somewhere in the outpost, too bored to sleep. Seon Holder: The Seon Holder makes it so that anyone can send messages(PMs) to any other living players. As long as a Seon Holder is alive, there is no limit to PMs, except that the GM must be included in all of them. The game will start on Monday, November 23rd, at 3:30 MST. Cycles will be 24 hours long. Rollovers will be at 3:30 PM MST/10:30 PM GMT. Spec doc available upon request. The order of actions is as follows: Rulo Message Soldier Lynch Priest Sacrifice Quick Links:
  8. The Everstorm has come. Heralds and Voidbringers alike are returning. The Vengeance Pact has broken, shattered like the Plains themselves. Some Highprinces flee, returning to their princedoms, trying to prepare as best they can. Others rally to Dalinar’s call, fighting their way across the near impassable Plains to the Oathgate, and Urithiru. Your small group once belonged to Highprince Thanadal’s camp, but now you are searching desperately for the Oathgate, hoping against hope that you arrive before you succumb to the elements. Bound together by adversity, you would like to believe you can trust each other. Not all is as it seems, however. Trouble has been drawn to your expedition like rotspren to a wound. Bridges collapse, chulls die; your progress has been hindered left and right. And it’s beginning to seem as if it might not all be coincidence… Factions: Roles: Mechanics: Welcome to LG13! Sign-ups are starting now, and will end on July 13th, at 11:00 PM CDT. (This will also be the regular roll-over time.) Check back to this post fairly often; I'll try to keep an up-to-date player list, as well as rule clarifications and links to various write-ups. If anything comes up, or you've got any questions about the Fair Play Rules, (which you should probably go give a read, if you haven't already) the impartial mod for this game will be Little Wilson. Feel free to ask any questions you might have, and if you're interested in being part of the Spec Doc, just send me a PM. Player List: Sani (The Only Joe) - Lighteyes who once scribed for Dalinar Kholin. Justin (Peng the Just) - Former slave. Sheon Idris (Seonid) - Selish Worldhopper. Ableah Edr (Haelbarde) - Woefully without description. Another Selish Worldhopper, of a clan of Selish Worldhoppers. Etam (Metacognition) - Scout. Madon (Mailliw73) - Crem collector. Bartholomew the Blind (Bort) - midget barbomancer/Worldhopper. The Roszo (Renegade) - Herdazian who is determined to be more impressive than his glowing cousin. Adamir (Adamir) - Darkeyes who is convinced he's from another world. Seixa (phattemer) - Yet another Selish Worldhopper,* and once (pseudo-)Priest of Shu-Korath. Kip Sturm (Kipper) - Smart Alec Woefully without description. Ace (Macen) - Delusional man with a tiny hammer, believes that he's a Brightlord and a Radiant. Jain (Lightsworn Panda) - A panda. In a desolate wasteland. (Maybe he's Thanadal's exotic Shin pet?) Em C. Palah (Emerald101) - Emuli potter. (Needs Ace's hammer.) Citrona Vinid (Shallan) - Scadrian-Elantiran Worldhopper and noble who will not be questioned. Wannan (Herowannabe) - Darkeyed soldier. Alive, and assumed to be immortal, seeing how he isn't dead. Eradin (eramit) - Best darkeyed spearman in Thandal's army. Wol (Araris Valerian) - Old ardent who might know how to spell his own name. Findilti Findilt (idolevy) - Delusional man who thinks he's a Knight Radiant. Orlok (OrlokTsobodai) - Woefully without description. Plurn Burn (Feligon) - Engineer who is woefully ignorant of fabrials. Dow (dowanx) - Woefully without description. Eo (Spooky Eowyn) - Apparently Thaylen with fake eyebrows. May or may not be a Selish Worldhopper. Akirsefatafesrika (Bridge Boy) - Blasphemous pretend soldier. Smeagol (leiftinspace) - Obsessive midget Universehopper. Kazaaakplethkilik (Paranoid King) - Supposedly famous thief and Worldhopper. Alvonoha (Alvron) - Ardent, and owner of a strange cat. Catquisitor!?! Cla (Clanky) - Horneater who loves drinking contests. Torren (twelthrootoftwo) - Recalcitrant conscript, and spy for Roion. *Don't ask why there are so many Selish Worldhoppers, despite the danger involved in traversing the Selish and Rosharan Cognitive Realms. It's complicated. F.A.Q.s: 1. Why does Progression come last in the Order of Actions? Progression comes last in the Order of Actions because you are not meant to be able to use it to protect yourself, and I don't want people working around that. Additionally, as Progression is a healing power, it makes logical sense for it to occur after the kill has been made, so there is something to heal. 2. Will Division and the Eliminator Kill be distinguishable in the write-up? Are people saved by Progression revealed in the write-up? Yes they will. However, in the case of Progression, it is only made known that someone was saved from a kill, not who was saved. This holds true for players saved by Abrasion and Tension. (Progression will be distinguishable from kills blocked by Abrasion or Tension, though.) 3. Which actions will players be informed of if they are targeted by them? They will be informed of Division, the Diagramist Kill, Progression (if it saves them from a kill), Illumination, Transportation (if it successfully redirects an action) and Adhesion (if it successfully blocks an action, although this will be indistinguishable from action failure for other reasons). 4. Does someone with Transformation have to specify whether they are looking for a player's Alignment or Role? Yes, you will have to specify which you're looking for. If someone forgets to specify, I'll flip a coin to see which they get.
  9. Twas the night before Christmas and all through the forum. There were exasperated sighs and feelings of boredom! They hit the refresh button for what felt like the thousandth time, They were looking for something entertaining, something sublime! When to what should their wandering eyes should appear, But a game about treachery, death, mayhem, and fear! Huzzah! They exclaimed as their blood lust started rising. They clicked on it quickly, their characters they started devising. It was a Christmas miracle, this game showing up on the site. So Merry Christmas to all and to all a good fight! It's been almost a full year since I started the first game of Sanderson Elimination here on the 17th Shard and what a year it has been! 19 games already and so many new formats and new roles and new systems! You guys have truly made this unique from any other variation of Mafia/Werewolves out there! On top of that, for a game that encourages lies, manipulation, deceit and not just a little bit of blood lust, for the most part, you've all been very cordial and respectful towards each other. You are all truly gentleman killers! I want to thank each and every one of you for being a part of these games and for all the enjoyment I've gotten out of running and playing these games beside you. These games wouldn't exist without all of you and you're all amazing in my book! So, in light of it being our first year together, I thought it would be fun and interesting to go back to our very first game together and see how much has changed since then! To show how far everyone has come since those early, naive days. So here's to one full year of Sanderson Elimination! I hope you've all had as much fun as I have and here's to many more years to come! ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Oh no! Koloss have begun advancing on your little town, Tyrian Falls! Since The Lord Ruler died, they seem to be acting with a mind of their own. Unfortunately for you, your town is a way point between Fadrex City and Luthadel. That means you have a stockpile of metals, but that's probably why they targeted you in the first place. On the other hand, you have a large collection of metals! You might be able to hold them off, but it seems like someone (or a conspiracy of someones) seems to be undermining your defenses. Somehow, before the Koloss arrive, you have to rid your town of these dissenters; those that are spiked. Until then, you won't be able to mount an effective defense for your town. If you fail, everyone dies, so you better not fail! --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Some people within the town have been hiding a few secrets; some of them are Mistings, so you have help in your battle versus the forces of Ruin. Although some of them may be spiked. Why can't anything be easy? THUG: They can survive a single attack. If they are killed during a night or day cycle, they survive and this will be revealed in the write up. If they are attacked again, they die; finally. TINEYE: They are messengers and are capable of writing messages to the town while remaining anonymous. Each night, they can send a message to the Game Master. He will then post it within the write up at the end of the night. As long as the Tineye is alive, players can send Private Messages back and forth. Once he dies, he can no longer deliver messages, so no more PMs. SMOKER: The Smoker is undetectable and he can extend this power to one other person each night. If scanned by a Seeker, the smoker or the person encompassed within his coppercloud will show up as nothing. Alternatively, the Smoker can turn his coppercloud off. This would allow them to be scanned. In addition to being undetectable by the Seeker, the Smoker and his target are unaffected by emotional Allomancy. As long as the Smoker is using their coppercloud, the Soother and Rioter cannot change their votes. SEEKER: The Seeker can sense when someone is burning metals. In fact, he/she has gotten so good that they can tell whether someone is spiked or not! Once per night, the Seeker can target someone to learn their abilities and alignment. COINSHOT: The Coinshot does what they do best. They push metals around; specifically into other people's bodies. Once per night, the Coinshot can target a person for death. Unless otherwise disrupted, that person dies. LURCHER: Where the Coinshot pushes, the Lurcher pulls. Once per night the Lurcher can target someone and that person will be saved from death. SOOTHER: Their ability to dampen emotions puts them and the Rioter in a very special position. During any time during the day round (up until the round ends), they can negate one person's vote. The change will be anonymous, but since I will be posting voting results at the end of each day, those that are observant should be able to tell whose votes were changed. RIOTER: The Rioter works in a similar fashion as the Soother, except once during the day round they can change one person's vote. Using this power does nullify their own vote though. They are still capable of voting, but their vote will not be counted. The change itself will be anonymous, but since I will be posting voting results at the end of each day, those that are observant should be able to tell whose votes were changed. MISTBORN: The Mistborn have the abilities of all of the above, but will only be able to use one per cycle. At the beginning of every night, the Mistborn will be told which ability they have and it's the only ability they have until the next night. REGULAR VILLAGERS: You have no special powers, but you still get a vote every day. Who knows? Perhaps you were meant to be the one to save the town! Not all stories are about the strongest people in a group. SPIKED: Beyond possibly having one of the above roles, you can hear Ruin talking to you. He's told you who else in the town is spiked and together you're to keep the town from mounting a defense before the Koloss arrive. In return, you will be spared. Your goal is to kill one person per night until you outnumber the villagers. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I've made only the slightest of changes to account for our experience. There are no safe roles and depending on how many people decide to sign up, there might be more than one Mistborn! Everything else has stayed the same. We'll be starting on a Night round (sorry to whomever gets killed before they even really get a chance to play! This is due to the fact that that was how it was before and I think it will give people a chance to establish some RP before the game actually starts (which always helps make the write ups better, IMO). Order of Actions for the Night will be: -Smoker -Seeker -Lurcher -Coinshot/Kills Days will be 48 hours long (ending roughly around 1 AM EST unless this schedule needs to change). Nights will be 24 hours long. No hints will be given in the write ups. Allegiance and Roles will be reveal upon death. That should be about everything! If I missed something that you would like clarified, please, let me know either via PM or here in thread and I'll do my best to answer any questions! Sign ups should last for about a week from now, so we won't actually be starting until after Jan 1st, but soon after. Let the mayhem begin! Player List Lord Pifferdoo: Baron von Piffertiff the Third (The 1%) Village Soother The Only Joe: Joe (Metallurgist) Regular Villager Mailliw73: Maill (Cobbler) Village Tineye Dominic 1994: Dom (Retired Hazekiller) Regular Villager McKeeDee123: Melend Venture (Stranded Nobleman) Spiked Mistborn Eolhandras: Eoladdin (Town Lunatic) Village Mistborn Kasmir: Karnad (Courier) Regular Villager Little Wilson: Wilson (Town Messenger) Village Lurcher Winter Cloud: Cleo (Metallurgist Apprentice) Village Smoker Alvron: Vron (Alchemist) Village Soother JasonPeng: Peng (Crazy Old Man) Regular Villager Seonid: Senn Conrad (Minor Nobleman) Spiked Lurcher Lightsworn Panda: Jain (Traveler) Village Rioter Renegade: Rent (Lord of the Lands) Village Tineye Ashiok: Ashette Cett (Young Noblewoman) Regular Villager Newan: Newan (Wannabe Hero) Village Smoker Herowannabe: Herwynbe (Terris Steward) Village Coinshot Lord Claincy Ffnord: Clancy (Storyteller) Spiked Smoker Arasis Valerian: Aralis (Skeptical Elderly Grump) Village Seeker Dowanx: Ament (Tailor) Regular Villager Jasnah Damodred: Damon Shan (Worldhopper Who Hates Cookies) Village Thug OstrichofEvil: Lord Ostrich Maliscei Tekiel (Glass Merchant) Regular Villager A Smart Guy: Satrams (Nervous Bartender) Village Smoker Unodus: Odustren Kuethershud (Painter) Spiker Rioter Wyrmhero: Wyra (Female Smith Apprentice/Brawler) Village Thug Weiry Writer: Riew (Skaa Repairman) Spiked Smoker Macen: Larry (Balding Middle-Aged Man) Regular Villager Sarcomere: Recco (Pizza Flinging Foreigner) Village Soother
  10. Ah, Urteau; your home. Sure, things haven't been the same since the Lord Ruler died, but ever since Straff Venture went off to conquer Luthadel, your thieving crew has thrived. Where once you were just a no named crew, barely surviving in the Harrows, now people call you Kalling's Crew. Named after the ashmount nearest to the city, you've blanketed the town in crime sprees and cons. Recently, your leader, Modeft has called the crew together for a new job. He's calling it the heist of a life time and he may be right. It may cost all of you your lives if the Inquisitors catch wind of it.... The Roles Similar to the first game, there will be the 9 typical roles. Where this game is different is that there is only one evil role, The Inquisitor. THUG: They can survive a single attack. If they are killed during a night or day cycle, they survive and this will be revealed in the write up. If they are attacked again, they die… finally. TINEYE: They are messengers and are capable of writing messages to the town while remaining anonymous. Each night, they can send a message to the Game Master. He will then post it within the write up at the end of the night. As long as the Tineye is alive, players can send Private Messages back and forth. Once he dies, he can no longer deliver messages, so no more PMs. SMOKER: The Smoker is undetectable and he can extend this power to one other person each night. If scanned by a Seeker, the smoker or the person encompassed within his coppercloud will show up as nothing. Alternatively, the Smoker can turn his coppercloud off. This would allow them to be scanned. In addition to being undetectable by the Seeker, the Smoker and his target are unaffected by emotional Allomancy. As long as the Smoker is using their coppercloud, the Soother and Rioter cannot change their votes. SEEKER: The Seeker can sense when someone is burning metals. In fact, he/she has gotten so good that they can tell whether someone is spiked or not! Once per night, the Seeker can target someone to learn their abilities and alignment. COINSHOT: The Coinshot does what they do best. They push metals around; specifically into other people’s bodies. Once per night, the Coinshot can target a person for death. Unless otherwise disrupted, that person dies. LURCHER: Where the Coinshot pushes, the Lurcher pulls. Once per night the Lurcher can target someone and that person will be saved from death. SOOTHER: Their ability to dampen emotions puts them and the Rioter in a very special position. During any time during the day round (up until the round ends), they can negate one person’s vote. The change will be anonymous, but since I will be posting voting results at the end of each day, those that are observant should be able to tell whose votes were changed. RIOTER: The Rioter works in a similar fashion as the Soother, except once during the day round they can change one person’s vote. Using this power does nullify their own vote though. They are still capable of voting, but their vote will not be counted. The change itself will be anonymous, but since I will be posting voting results at the end of each day, those that are observant should be able to tell whose votes were changed. MISTBORN: There will only be one Mistborn. They have the abilities of all of the above, but will only be able to use one per cycle. At the beginning of every night, the Mistborn will be told which ability they have and it’s the only ability they have until the next night. UNSNAPPED: You are a Regular Villager, except you have a latent ability hiding inside of you. In the chance that a Misting is converted into a Spiked player, you'll finally recognize your true potential and snap into your allomantic powers. You will inherit the abilities of the converted allomancer, although there is a 25% chance of getting a different one. There is also a 10% chance that you will snap eventually anyways. Every night, the GM will roll to see if you snap. If you do, the power you get will be assigned randomly. REGULAR CREW MEMBER: You have no special powers, but you still get a vote every day. Who knows? Perhaps you were meant to be the one to save the town! Not all stories are about the strongest people in a group. INQUISITOR: Somehow, you've managed to hide amongst the crew. You must have a very good (and very large) pair of sunglasses. Like the Mistborn, there's only one of you, but whenever a Misting dies, you can convert a different player to your side with the role of the dead Misting. You can only do this with the freshly dead though, so the conversion must happen during the very next night turn. To aide you in quest, Ruin has granted you [X] number of special abilities. The number of these abilities will depend on how many players are in the game. To convert another player, you need a dead Misting and one of your Ruin granted abilities. Your target will have a 50% chance to gain the powers of the dead Misting and your Ruin granted power will be used up. The sacrificed power will then be revealed to everyone. If you give up your final Ruin power, you will die. You cannot convert the Mistborn. Cosmetic Roles These are additional roles that players can take on at their own discretion. They do not affect the game play in any way other than to modify how the player posts. If you come up with your own role, feel free to suggest it. There is no penalty for not using one. These are here for your enjoyment, not to be a deterrent. High Imperial - Wasing the wanting of speaking in High Imperial. You must use it at least somewhere in your posts. Note: you do not have to use it for every sentence and you still need to be mostly intelligible. Survivor Priest - Kelsier wasn't just a famous crew leader for you. Perhaps you were in Luthadel during the riots. Perhaps you saw him come back. Regardless, you're a believer and must make reference to the Survivor or the Survivor religion in each post. Drunk - You're never far from a bottle. Heck, sometimes you sleep with one curled in your hands. The reason you drown yourself in alcohol is your own, but within every post, you need to slur some of your words and/or appear to be drunk in some fashion. Cassanova - Good looks are such a curse; one you know all too well. While you didn't ask for it, to you, it's obvious that you are the best looking person ever and you won't let anyone forget it. In every post, you need to remind everyone of what a heartbreaker you are. The Jaist - Somehow, somewhere, you heard about Jaism and knew it to be perfect for you. Now that the Lord Ruler is gone, you've taken up the mantle of this lost religion and in Jaist fashion, you frequently mention your faith. You must end your posts with "Praise the Ja." And that's Game 2! Please state the name of your character (again, please keep it somewhat close to your username) and your role in the crew! I'd like to get around 25 players for this game, but we'll see how many sign up and I'll adjust accordingly. Once I have an idea of how many players I'll have, I may or may not give out the exact number of each role in the game. I will tell you if a role is absent from the game though. If you have any questions or comments, feel free to ask either here or in a PM! Let the Chaos begin! The Players 1. Gamma Fiend- Gamon (Casanova Spiked Soother 2. Bartbug - Barty Spiked (Madman) Tineye 3. Windrunner - Windrunner (Fall Guy) Thug 4. WeiryWriter - Weiry (Lookout) Lurcher 5. Awesomeness Summoned - Wes (pickpocket) Coinshot 6. 213 - Digits (Doctor) Regular Crew Member 7. Simmingly - Shimble Leice (Minor Noble) Coinshot 8. PorridgeBrick - Ridge (Rigger) Seeker 9. Alvron - Vron (Alchemist) Smoker 10. Serendipity - Seran (Reformed Assassin) Thug 11. Kurkistan - Kurki (Knife Guy/Jaist) Regular Crew Member 12. Aether - Aether (Priest of the Survivor) Thug 13. LoganMathewJohnson - Mathieu (Faux Noble) Regular Crew Member 14. AonarFaileas - Aonar (Ex Hazekiller) Spiked 15. Princess - Cessie (Noble Woman) Inquisitor 16. Herowannabe - Herwynbe (Ex Terris Steward) Tineye 17. Dyring - Dyring (Innkeeper Front) Lurcher 18. Edgedancer - Eddy (Bouncer) Regular Crew Member 19. Lord Claincy Ffnord - Ffnord (Stealth Expert) Regular Crew Member 20. Quiver - Lord Ollivier (Obligator) Spiked 21. Mailliw73 - Maxill (Young Recruit) Soother 22. Robot Aztec - Roban (Bartender) Regular Crew Member 23. Little Wilson - Wilson (Messenger) Spiked Coinshot 24. JasonPenguin - Peng (Orphan) Mistborn 25. Sivertongue - Shiv (Cutpurse) Lurcher 26. Leonardus - Lam (Body Sweeper) Regular Crew Member 27. Grayv - Grave (Twixt) Rioter 28. Luckcat - Lucy (Paranoid Urchin) Seeker 29. Aspren - Aspren (Supplies Manager) Smoker Quick Links: