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Screen Shots & Obituaries / Re: Iseabail Cawdor, alias Ailis
« on: September 26, 2020, 01:53:05 AM »
I love you all.

I've now updated the original post with a bunch of screenshots, enjoy.

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Screen Shots & Obituaries / Iseabail Cawdor, alias Ailis
« on: September 25, 2020, 01:59:06 AM »

That is it for Iseabail. I may revisit this thread in the future to post screenshots, when I figure out which ones are non-spoilery. Big thanks to the players and DMs who interacted with me, you know who you are.

[MOOD MUSIC] Some screens:

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Thank you for watching.
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Bonus screen
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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 24, 2020, 09:05:00 PM »
But the day came when she could turn her back no longer. To the court of her lord there came a man, ragged and pale. He was the reeve of the realm of her birth, and he wept when he saw her. For at last his search was complete, now that he had found the missing scion. On his knees he begged her, poured out his soul, beseeched her to return to her native land, to end the quarrel between uncle and grandfather, to finish the war, to restore the peace, to put the castle in order.

She would not hear it. She pulled her sleeve away from the man's imploring hand, dismissed him from the court, went into the walled garden to fill her lungs and clear her troubled mind. She closed her eyes, but she could still see his weeping face. She told the harpist to fill her ears with music, but his broken voice still echoed in her head.

So she left the court and went to visit her friend in the town. Her friend listened to her, and then asked: "You are a knight now, aren't you?" Yes, she was. "And you know what it means to be a knight, don't you?" Yes, she did. "There are many of us," her friend told her, "who watch you. There are many of us who delight in your destiny. You are what we cannot be. You are the woman I never became. I will never be a knight, but you are."

She knew then what she must do. So she asked her lord's blessing to leave, and he granted her nine thousand men, of whom three thousand were still alive upon her thirty-second birthday.

The night before, the castle's garrison had made a final, desperate sally, attempting to surprise the camp of investment, but they had failed, and their captains surrendered. The war was over. Shortly after dawn, the castle's drawbridge was lowered. Palm-wreathed, she entered.

The castle was empty save for its servants. She found no living relative, no lord or lady. She searched the castle fruitlessly. At last, she went up into the tower where once she had dwelt.

Sitting by the window, she found a girl, ten years of age at most. She seemed familiar, but when she turned, she saw that she was wearing a mask of silver, and could not recognize her.

"What is your name?" she asked the girl. "Hilre", the girl answered. Through the mask, her eyes shone with fear.

"That's my name too. Perhaps you were named after me?"

"No. You stole my name. You are a peasant and a pretender. They told me everything."

"Let me see your face." Seized by a sudden instinct to remove the girl's mask, she approached her. But as soon as she reached out, the girl, in terror, scrambled into the window, leapt from it, and plummeted into the moat below.

From the window, she ordered her men to search for the girl, dead or alive.

But they could not find her.




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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 24, 2020, 08:05:01 PM »
At dawn, she stood on a promontory, looking down into the valley, and upon the castle, hulking over the bank of the river, that dominated it. Banners smattered in the air above and behind her, held aloft by men with iron minds and golden hearts, men who would have killed and died for her, and who for the past innumerable days had done just that.

The sun was rising upon her thirty-second birthday, and when it had set again, it would be twenty-two years to the night on which she had left the same castle she now gazed upon.

Long had she turned her back on the ghosts of her past, turned a deaf ear to their haunting cries. For years her dreams had been plagued by faceless men, hunting her through the woods and across the hills at twilight, reaching out with long hands and black fingers, seeking to retrieve her, to return her to the castle, to put her back in her tower. But her worst nightmares were about a single solitary figure: the woman whose death, they say, she had caused.

This woman, her heart already swaddled in widow's black, driven mad with grief at the disappearance of her only child and heir, had climbed one day to the top of the castle, and thrown herself off the battlements, into the moat below, and drowned. Her sudden death, in turn, had thrown the castle, and the land over which the castle ruled, into chaos. The lady's father, and the late lord's brother, in time fell at each other's throats, their respective armies tormenting the valley and the mountain villages around it, vying for the lost crown.

Suffering like a blight spread over the land, and those whose misfortune it was to live in it lamented their fate, bemoaned the curse which had seemed to begin with the disappearance of the child and now was blooming into the ruin of the realm.

For years she had looked away, dismissed those who spoke of her native land. She wanted to devote herself to her future, to her new home, to the lord who had become like a father to her.




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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 24, 2020, 06:01:18 PM »
The more she spoke, the more tired I became. Hours seemed to pass in minutes. Fatigue overtook me, so finally I excused myself, and withdrew to my room. I put the light out and went to sleep.

When I woke up, I walked into the common room half dreading to see the woman greeting me. I'd slept uneasily and had no patience for more talking. Her voice was still ringing in my ears. But I did not see her at breakfast, or anywhere. I became curious. Had she left in the night? I looked around. I thought to ask the inn-keeper, but thought better of it. After all, what business was it of mine?

But as I went back to my room to fetch my things for the journey, suddenly, there she was. In the mirror, looking back at me.

Her face. Her eyes. The same tense, nervous energy.

I looked about the room, confused, as though in the moments after waking from a dream.

My eyes seized upon my notebook, lying open on the nightstand, a quill standing next to it in an empty inkwell.

I took it and read with a curious sensation the words upon the page:

"I was dusty from the road. My bones were aching. I couldn't remember the last time I had been so worn out ..."




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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 23, 2020, 05:55:24 PM »
I was dusty from the road. My bones were aching. I couldn't remember the last time I had been so worn out. Getting inside, getting to sit down and rest was a blessing.

I kept to myself. Most others in the innhouse seemed to be in groups. There was one other person who was solitary, however: a woman, about my age. She was having supper alone. After an hour or two, we got to talking. There was an energy about her. She said she was an actress. She said she was traveling with her fiancée but that he had gone ahead of her after they had quarrelled. He would be halfway to the next big town by now, taking care of some business in time for her to catch up.

She told me they had met during one of her performances. He had been spellbound by her, she said. She was everything he had ever wanted. I didn't ask about any of this, but she told me anyway. She told me about the village she came from. She told me about her aunt, who had been thought a witch by the locals. She told me about her first performances with a traveling troupe.

She kept talking until my head was filled with images of her life. They crowded out the images of my own. They crowded out my own thoughts. They crowded out my own memories.



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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 23, 2020, 12:30:13 AM »
Once upon a time, there was a girl who lived in a castle.

In this castle, she had everything a girl could ever want. So her servants told her.

And yet she always felt as though something was missing.

She would spend long hours looking out the window from her tower. Her servants would chide her, admonishing her to spend more of her attention to the people and matters within the castle.

But the more attention she paid to them, the more she realized how strange they were to her, and she to them. How little she knew of them, and they of her.

Her mind would return to the window and what lay beyond it. The world out there was alien. Yet she was certain, and from whence this certainty came she knew not, that there were people out there. That they were waiting for her. And that they would be more familiar to her than those in the castle ever could.

So one day, she left.




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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 22, 2020, 01:21:24 AM »
She was uncognizant of the hostility between her father and the man who would become her Master. But eventually, realization became inescapable, as the knowledge of his tutelage became what finally killed that which had been already dying. To her father, it was a matter of pain, bitterness, perhaps even betrayal. But he was too proud to speak of it. And the girl was too disciplined to ask either man about it, even as the hidden truth of the grudge between them became the defining element of her youth.

How had they known each other? Since when? And what had sparked their enmity? She could never guess, and she would never find out.

Instead, she focused on her studies. There was silence, and a calm so profound that time seemed to yield before it. The dark waves of the sea fell upon the dark stone of the rocky shore. Candles replaced daylight. Daylight replaced candles. Sometimes, a raven came to watch her from the tree outside the window.




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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 22, 2020, 01:02:32 AM »
She finds herself in a cage of blades, sharpened and polished by her own doing, her reflection staring back at her from every bar of naked steel.

She finds herself unable to escape the doom that seemed to belong only to others. But as they died, so she must die too.



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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 22, 2020, 01:02:05 AM »
The silences between them grew longer and longer. In the end they recognized they had nothing more to say to each other or, if they did, they did not know how to.

The girl would leave, get in her boat, row across the dark waters to the little island where her Master, and he alone, lived. The first time he saw her, he was surprised. Though she didn't realize it then, he immediately recognized her as the daughter of his old antagonist. But he made no comment of it.




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Journals and Musings / Re: A diary
« on: September 22, 2020, 01:01:54 AM »
Name: Hilre Winespill
Age: ? <10
Condition: Mute.
Possessions: A doll. Buttons for eyes. One button missing.

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Correspondence / Re: A letter for Allis weaver
« on: September 18, 2020, 09:55:09 PM »
Yashan,

You fool. You are the one who failed me. You told me that you agreed with me, and that you would explain to Thensbane and Gabrielle, that I am not to blame for the choice that Galdera made of her own free will. You called their attitude idiotic. Yet a mere day later, Thensbane and Gabrielle, like cowards, assaulted me in a stairwell without warning, trying to stab me to death.

Not only was this dishonorable, it was also foolish, as they did so in plain sight of my employer at the Vault, Arek Vlasi. It was he who stopped their attack, and it was he, not I, who decided to take Gabrielle hostage after the two had been subdued. He did so, with the intention of releasing her unharmed, in exchange for the promise that the Vale stop hunting for his head because of long-forgotten grudges.

I am guilty of nothing except having been randomly attacked by your fellow retainers. You failed to talk sense into them, Yashan. Do not put your failure on me. Do not put Thensbane's and Gabrielle's foolish, hateful violence on me. Do not put Arek Vlasi's actions on me. Instead, you should thank me, and so should they, for not taking Thensbane's life the way she tried to take mine. I could have after she was taken down, but I did not.

I am sick and tired of being blamed for things I did not do, slandered by fools who are merely looking for a scapegoat. I am not responsible for what happened to Ring 99, nor am I responsible for what happened to the Weavers, nor am I responsible for Galdera's own free actions. Enough!

Do whatever you like. Serve the twisted Velstra family if that is your desire. Serve the sick, sadistic murderer Ruul, who has done more to bring the Nothing into this City than anyone else.

But do not for a second think that you are in a position to judge me. The only thing I am guilty of is having been loyal to Valentina to the end, and of having killed a worshiper of the Nothing, who had murdered my friend, and was going to murder many others. And I will not apologize for it.


         Ailis

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Correspondence / [Identical letters to Etzio and to Archivist Winneseph.]
« on: September 15, 2020, 09:57:15 PM »
Mr. Jackdaw,

Since you have requested an account of what transpired recently, here is the truth, divorced from the distortions of those with political stakes, sputtering red-faced with pretended outrage, or with only limited glimpses of what occurred who have lately chimed in.

Detective Cole Wakefield was a good man. He never harmed anyone. He helped as many as he could. He, more than most and earlier than most, realized the momentous threat the Nothing poses to this City, and the time he did not spend helping others, he spent in researching this force of darkness. I was one of those assisting his research, and I knew, as he himself said on many occasions, that it was a matter of time before the Nothing would try to silence him, because he had learned too much.

Much to mine and many others' sorrow, that day recently came, when a man unknown, unaccomplished and undistinguished in this City, without any personal history or knowledge of Mr. Wakefield -- a man whose only calling in life was to willingly serve the very Nothing that threatens to doom us all -- this blackguard ambushed Wakefield, snatched him off the street, and took him deep into the Drips of the City. There, he sacrificed Mr. Wakefield to the Nothing itself. Far away from his friends and loved ones, without the opportunity to say farewell, without the opportunity for mercy, without even the dignity of having his life ended by a man he actually knew. This was a heinous crime. And while many seemed to shrug their shoulders at this crime, I could not.

When I saw the Champion smugly standing in the King's Commons, far away from the shield of the laws behind which he was accustomed to hiding, I decided to take him down and make him explain where he had taken Wakefield and what he had done to him. (This he later did answer, under interrogation.) I could not have done it without the leal bravery of Isabela Galdera, servant of my patroness, Lady Valentina Velstra. The men of Glitt were also helpful, recognizing the evil that was embodied in the Champion.

We took him -- Galdera and I, and the two men of Glitt, Lochlan and Dorian -- to Webber's Wonders to interrogate him. The madman freely confessed to taking Wakefield's life, and he boasted -- as he had done publicly, less than an hour before -- of the "thousand thousand" souls he was going to take in the same manner as he had taken Wakefield. In the words of Raventree, who was present, the madman was unredeemable. He was dangerous, and every breath he drew was an offense to justice. I decided to end his life there and then, even though I knew, as the Archive had indeed warned, that it would anger the Nothing. I correctly surmised that this anger, and the danger that attended it, would chiefly fall upon myself and Galdera. I committed this act of justice because I believe that justice cannot allow itself to stay its hand in the face of the threat of evil. Threats of evil must be met with courage, not cowardice or collaboration. I believe the City would benefit from seeing that justice can and should be done, even in the face of terrible darkness.

Shortly afterwards, the Nothing, outraged at this justice, snatched myself and Galdera away to a place many hundreds of Rings from here. There, it demanded that a new Champion be selected -- if it didn't get what it wanted, it would destroy the City and every living thing within it. Galdera, then, realizing that her destiny as a knight was to save the City, and recognizing that this was the opportunity to do so, took it upon herself to serve as the new Champion. She drank, freely and with courage in her heart, from the Chalice of Darkness, sealing the pact that would save us.

After that, the Nothing dismissed us as one dismisses a summoned creature, and we found ourselves back in Ring 99. The Glittsman Dorian, seemingly now fearful of the fabricated outrage being stirred up by the Weavers' enemies, roughly threw me at the feet of the Royal Archive to answer for my actions. The Royal Archivist himself, however, said that no action was to be taken against me, and that the matter was closed. To the contrary, the entire debacle had merely strengthened the King's authority, by proving that Trystan Moonspear is desperate to follow the rules of the Tournament -- implicitly submitting to the King's authority, and illustrating all the more the importance of that ancient institution. In this sense, far from any crime, by revealing this I had done the Kingdom a service.

I afterwards learned that brutal madmen had burned children alive in Ticker Square, seizing upon the opportunity to rile the mobs, bribe the gormless Blackjacks, and destroy a faction that they were eager to see gone from the Ring. How anyone with a straight face can overlook this barbaric massacre, but reproach me for bringing justice to a Nothing-worshiping murderer, is rather fascinating.

Let the history of this matter be written truly and known to all, instead of allowing printed lies, misprisions and opportunistic slanders carry the day.


Sincerely,
                   Ailis Weaver

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Off-topic Discussion / Re: EFU:CoR Leaving/Returning Posts
« on: September 13, 2020, 11:59:01 PM »
I'll be taking an extended break from EfU for some time.  Me and my wife had a child a lot earlier than she was scheduled to arrive, so there's no time for EfU at the moment :)
Congrats!

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Screen Shots & Obituaries / Re: Detective Wakefield
« on: September 13, 2020, 02:53:30 AM »
Everything Wanch said. A great PC and played with such style, and consideration for other players.

Particularly glad we got to share that YMD murder mystery experience. I am still blown away by it and it was a fun, unusual and interesting RP experience to share with another player the way we did.

Love ya!

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