The curse of the eastern isle

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Ayla and Yuka!

(Addilyn and Yunoko for the uninitiated~)

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Update: The story is going on a temporary break. I've lost a bit of fire for this at the moment and there's a few things that need solving. We should be back in business soon.

Also, due to two outside votes, We have a three way tie between Lucina, Addilyn, and Margo.

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It is done! So this is the last chapter for the intro and after an hour to myself I intend to start working on the next one. I have the plans ready and some fuckin' motivation so stay tuned. And a special thank you to everybody who has taken part so far. It has been a good long while since I did writing and it feels good to know there are people out there enjoying it enough to participate with each passing chapter.

 

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Lucina, the white haired fighter, a girl whose knowledge and experiences may very well surpass your own, a strong competent companion to stand by your side against the unknown. Seeing that sword resting by her side, her strong and commanding demeanour wrapped up in a set of sturdy armour. You know she is the right choice.

 Your eyes move over to the young bard playing her violin. You’re still unsure what to make of the fiery haired girl. She stands out among the group, an outcast bred from a lack of experience made evident from her appearance alone. You notice however, something special about the bow sitting by her side; that it is no simple bow, the ornate markings, the black wood it is carved from; that’s an arcane bow. Perhaps there is more to that girl than meets the eye. Besides, between her, a mechanical engineer, a drunk with little dignity, and a mage keeping herself clandestine, the caravarni girl with the magical bow is the best of the bunch.   

As the barmaid makes her rounds, you beckon her over and request both Addilyn and Lucina to join you at your table. The barmaid nods and sets off with her orders. You relax for a moment. “Soon…” You say to yourself. A strange feeling of both fear and excitement stirs within you, terror and exhilaration. It is a strange conflict of emotions, one saved for moments like this when you are forced to question if this is your last contract, fear stemming from the cold eyes of death stalking you, waiting for the moment that the unknown takes you, but that is also where the excitement is, to stare death in the face and to reject it with a sword in your hand and the strength to overcome anything...is a feeling unmatched.

   The gentle sound of music fades as you watch the barmaid talk to Addilyn. The girl listens, replies to the barmaid, and heads toward you. The same for Lucina, who sits down her flagon, grabs her sword, and approaches the table. You sit silently as both girls get comfortable. “I wished to speak to you two. My name is Franziska and I wish to propose something. An alliance. I know you are both heading for Oldengrad and I hope you’d be willing to accompany me. It’s a dangerous place and we stand to gain more as a group than we do on our own.” You explain a little about yourself to the girls, telling them about your history, your training, and your own reasons for seeking out the mysteries of Oldengrad, to conquer what may be the greatest evil gripping this earth. Addilyn seems the most taken by your story, her eyes seem to sparkle and the look of joy on her face is unmatched as you speak of your years with the Selkava and the battles you have fought against the evils of the land.

   When you finish, there’s a moment of silence as you give the girls time to think. “You’re a woman of great experience.” Lucina speaks first. “I thought you were a capable warrior, ever since I saw that almanac dangling from your belt. A sword of the Selkava would make a fine ally. I accept.” Lucina offers her hand to you, which you shake with enthusiasm.

   Addilyn speaks after. “I’m also in! I’ve always wanted to fight alongside a Selkava! I don’t think I’ve met a person with a history like yours!” Addilyn smiles and also offers her hand.

   “That’s what I wanted to hear.” You smile. That was easier than expected. “If possible, I’d like to be off to Oldengrad by the end of the day. But I still need to arrange transport.”

   “You want to us leave today?” Addilyn asks.

   “Better we do this today while we can. We’ll have time to talk later."

   “Agreed.” Lucina adds.

   “Then we should prepare now.” You begin. “Addilyn, you can head down to the port and ask about the Natalya. If we’re lucky, we can depart before the sun sets.”

   “Okay! I’ll pack up what I need and head down for the port. There’s a boat in the harbour that is known to take people to Oldengrad! I heard about it in a tavern when I was travelling! It’s called the Natalya!”

   “Excellent. If Lucina doesn’t mind, I have to pick something up from the blacksmith and pay a visit to that caravan in the centre of town. I could use the company.” You keep your distrust of gypsies hidden from Addilyn. You doubt a caravarni would want to hear about your suspicions of them anyway.

 

   You depart the tavern with Lucina in your company and make the journey back to Vasili’s blacksmith. As you enter back out into the cold, you notice a large boat docked in the port. You try to remember if that was docked there earlier, but you fail to recall. Addilyn is making her way down toward the port, her satchel and violin hanging from her back. Now to get your sword, pay a visit to the gypsies with Lucina by your side and then at long last, begin your voyage.

   “Well look at you two!” Vasili, hard at work on a sword, greets you. “Nothing better than dying in company, right? I kid, I kid. You’re here for your sword?” Vasili stops on the current sword, reaches down by his side, and pulls up a silver sword. Your silver sword, as good as new. It had been a long while since your blade had looked like this. Your eyes cannot stray from the glow of the gleaming silver, it’s as if holy light radiates from within the silver. “It’s not moon silver, but even the simplest silver casts the brightest glow.” The Blacksmith says with a smile, obviously impressed with his own handiwork.

   You take the sword in your hand. It feels new, stronger, better...like you’re holding a new blade. You give it a few practice swings. “I can’t thank you enough, Vasili.”

   “You can thank me by slaying whatever the hell is on Oldengrad...and gold...Did we agree on a price? We didn’t? Let’s say...50 gold? And 40 for the pistol. I’m even throwing in some ammunition. Nothing fancy like silver or fire, just some regular standard bullets."

   “It’s a fair price.” You agree. In fact, it’s better than fair. I guess he was just happy to be working on something that wasn’t a woodcutter's axe or cheap swords. You take 90 gold from your pocket and place it beside the blacksmith.

   “So this is finally it, Lucina? I would’ve thought you’d be heading off to the island alone.”

   “I won’t pass up a sword of the Selkava by my side.”

   “Hmm...well, I have faith in you. By the way, you never told me your name.”

   You sheath the sword and place it on your back. “Franziska.”

   “Well, Franziska, best of luck to both of you.”

   You wave a final goodbye to Vasili and head back down to the gates. The last thing on your list was a visit to the gypsies. A plan that vanishes as you see that the caravan is no longer present. You ask a nearby fishwife about where the caravan went. “Gone. Packed up their charms and trinkets and set off back down the Eserith road.”

   You frown, thank the lady, and head of toward the port instead. You can only hope you will get a chance to find somebody on Oldengrad who can assist you with some alchemy ingredients, but for the moment you will have to do without.

 

   You walk along past a group of fishermen, wading through the strong stink of fish and the salty tinge of the sea air. You find Addilyn near the large ship you noticed. She takes notice of both of you and runs, clearly with good news on her tongue. “Great news guys! The Captain of the Natalya said he’d ferry us to Oldengrad!”

   “That was easier than expected…”

   “He said all we have to do is pull our own weight aboard the ship!”

   A common trade and a welcomed one. Your own wealth had depleted in the short time you were present in Dzarapor. Vasili’s services taking up a good chunk while your meal in the Black Bortski also did a small amount of damage. You’re no stranger to the trade of services though, if you want to travel the world you need to be willing to pull your own weight.

 

   However, before heading up onto the Natalya, you receive a surprise visit by a certain engineer. Margo comes up to you, her small frame made bigger by the presence of a pointy tipped witches hat. Her companion stands beside her, satchels in her hands and a large, heavy looking rifle slung over her shoulders.

   “I wish to come with you. I had intended to ask Addilyn and Lucina myself for their company to Oldengrad. They are, after all, the most reliable. But now I’m left with two choices: I either ask that drunk rambling imbecile and shady magus of the arcanum...or I come forth and offer my services to you. Since I stand before you it’s obvious I picked the latter.” The girls pitch isn’t very enthusiastic and you find it hard to take her seriously with her face covered by the tip of her hat, but you were not about to turn down an offered hand.

   “If you come with us, you’ve gotta pull your own weight on the ship.”

   Margo nods, beckons her companion to follow her and doesn’t say another word as she boards the ship. You follow behind, stepping up the ramp and walking onto the deck of the ship.

 

    This is it, the moment is finally here. After a long and harrowing journey across the country, you’re finally ready. You take a final look at Dzarapor, gazing at the small town by the sea. You are joined by Lucina and Addilyn, who also take a moment to say goodbye to the last piece of civilisation that any of you would see for a while.

   “So...next stop: Oldengrad.” Addilyn says with a nervous chuckle.

   “The cursed island of the east.” Lucina adds. “There’s no telling what we’ll find there.”

   “I guess we’ll find out soon enough.” You look out towards the horizon, unsettled by the thoughts of what lies beyond. “But for now...it's just a matter of waiting."

  Soon the gentle blue skies of the day turn to the blood red colours of the night. The red moon hangs high over the ship. It is a matter of time...soon...Oldengrad...and the mysteries behind the curse of the eastern isle will reveal themselves to you. Many have tried, many have fallen, but perhaps in the company of your new companions, at long last, Oldengrad can be free. Time will reveal everything to you...for now, you must be patient.

 

End of Prologue

 

 

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The last improvised chapter I need to do! Yay! I'm gonna up my pace after this since I'm now starting from the original point, but for now let the next chapter commence!

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Introduction

   

   The red moon watches overhead, marking the zenith of the twilight hours as it tints the black skies with the eerie glow of blood. You sit in the cozy confines of your cabin, with nothing more than the faint pale glow of a lantern to stave off the darkness of the shadows. It is not much, but for the next few days, this small room within the bowels of the Natalya is your home.

 

   It had been a tiring first few days on the vessel. You were expected to pull your own weight, to pay off the fees of your passage through manual labour. Hours spent below deck, shoveling load after load of coal into the roaring furnace. The time with your companions was not spent socially, but for the time you did spend, whether it was locking blades against Lucina to keep your body and mind ready for combat, or familiarizing yourself with the estranged feeling of a firearm in your hand under the watchful eye of Margo, you feel a bond form between you. With each clash of steel, with each target you fall at ten paces, your trust among these “strangers” grew stronger.

 

   It is the final night of your voyage on the Natalya, though you feel your body worn and spirit battered from a long week of work, the company of your newfound allies as you share a bottle of cider and reminisce of moments past is more than enough to soothe your aches and pains, a brief respite from the path ahead. You sit, wrapped up in the warmth of your blanket, enjoying the tales that Lucina and Addilyn have to tell about fragments of their history. Margo sadly, took no interest in sharing among you. The girl had taken to her bed an hour earlier, just before the rest of you had returned. By her side lies A267, sleeping with a smile as she shares the bed with her master.

 

   Addilyn goes first, sharing her motivations for adventuring over a story. A young girl of the Caravarni, the nomadic wanderers of the world, their reputation for kindness tainted by the foul poison of rumour and speculation. Behind the doors of taverns, in the cities behind stone walls, everybody spoke of the Caravarni, vile exiles, anomalies of the human world, black magic coursed through their veins, their only desires to sow havoc and suffering on the world. Addilyn had hoped to change that, to bring hope to the hearts of those she called family. The deeds, no matter how miniscule in scale, were done in their name, so that the naive and uneducated locals of the lands could see the light that shines behind the barrier of tainted words and lies. Oldengrad was to be her magnum opus. “If I...we...can save that island and the world learns a girl of the Caravarni did her part in ridding Oldengrad of an unknown evil...then maybe my family will be able to live normal lives, unbound by slander. No longer will we need to keep to the forests, no longer will we feel like outcasts and exiles among our fellow man. I want the Caravarni to be seen as the good folk they once were...and still are.”

 

   Lucina shares tales from a similar vine to your own; of the audacious monster hunter who pits her silver against the abominations that prowl the lands, preying on the weak and the innocent. Though what she shares is nothing new, they are threads of your own past seen through the eyes of another. Though she was unwilling to speak about anything prior to her time with the Selkava. “There’s not much to say before…” She said with a stutter when Addilyn tried to pry. It made you question why she was so shy about speaking about it, but you had no intention of prying yourself and took her words at face value.

   

   “Come on, Franziska! It’s your turn now!” Addilyn yells, almost pleading for you to share your own history. The girl craves stories, like many young adventurers, she seems to thrive on the fables and follies of those who have journeyed the path for a greater length of time. “We want to hear about your time in the Selkava! What was it like?”

   Before you can start, there is a faint mumbling and a creek beside you. Margo sits at the foot of her bed, a weary expression on her face as she stares at you for a moment. She looks back to the girl she shares her bed with. “A267? A267? Wake up…” She mutters, tugging at the shoulder of the android.

   The android awakens, smiling at the sight of her small compatriot. “Mother? Are you okay? You didn’t have a bad dream again, did you?”

   “I’m fine. I need you to accompany me...to the lavatory…” Even in the red tinted darkness of the night, you see Margo’s pale cheeks fill with colour as she announces that. She hops down from the bed, puts on her boots and leaves the cabin, holding the hand of A267 as she vanishes into the dark corridors.

   “So Franziska?” Addilyn asks again. “We wanna hear your story!”

   “You underwent the trial of Kavaan, did you not?” Lucina inquires. “I think we’d both love to hear about that. It is rare when an outsider is given such an opportunity.”

   “I suppose I could share...if you want to hear it?” Addilyn is forced to quell her excitement, nodding frantically. “Okay then.” You begin by explaining the story of Kavaan: The exiled demon who sought revenge on the underworld for stripping him of his power. When the gods cast aside humanity for their greed and transgressions and allowed the underworld into the human realm, Kavaan used this great event to his advantage, reaching out to the forsaken humans and offering them his power in exchange for their service. While many orders and banners tried to retain some faithfulness to the gods that had abandoned them, the Selkava were willing to accept the demons offer, understanding truly that only the power of a great demon could match another. Kavaan’s gift was rarely given to an outsider, it was a ritual often reserved for those born into the Selkava, those who would dedicate an entire life to falling the creatures of the underworld. “I was a rare one. The overseers saw great potential in me, enough to believe I was worthy of undertaking the trials. I was taken to a chamber beneath the guild hall, where I was made to drink from a font containing the blood of the demon himself.” That day still lingers in your mind, the drab stone walls of the chamber, the carving of Kavaan that stood atop the font, it’s eyes glowing, the disgusting stomach-turning taste of the blood as you drank...you could still taste it on the tip of your tongue. “A voice called out as consciousness faded from me. “You serve me now.” It said.” You explained the days that followed, the pain you felt as your blood boiled with the power of a demon, the strange and nearly mind-shattering dreams that clawed away at your psyche, but the reward far outshines the suffering. Because of it, you now wielded a power far beyond your own strengths, the power to warp and twist your own blood and life force into powerful tools during combat.

   The girls sit silently, even Margo who had returned from dealing with her bladder a short while ago was somewhat intrigued by the tale you told. It was not everyday you shared this story, but it was not something you kept hidden. After your own story, you decide to call it a night. You leave Addilyn and Lucina to talk between themselves, lying on your bed and letting the calm sounds of the ship’s engine lull you to sleep.

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Relationships

A party that shares a strong bond are more likely to survive the trials ahead. Each decision you make, every action you perform will alter their opinion of you...and not always for the better. As this story progresses and each challenge is overcome, tabs will be kept on the influence your actions have had over your party members, both good and bad.

 

Green: Your choices have had a positive influence on this party member. Your relationship is now stronger and their opinion of you is higher.

 

Yellow: Your choice has had no influence on this party member.

 

Red: Your choices have had a negative influence on this party member. They will trust you less and continued negative actions may cause them to turn against you.

 

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Lucina Lestant: Allies

The brief time you’ve spent sparring with one another has only helped to forge a warrior's bond between you. You are both capable warriors, and as a woman of honour, Lucina stands by your side.

 

Addilyn Tsereteli: Allies

Though you still fear the girls inexperience as a handicap, her ambitions of improvement cannot be faulted. You see something of an apprentice in Young Addilyn, an idea she seems quite drawn to. The girl enjoys your company and in turn you enjoy hers.

 

Margo Sortirov: Allies

She is quiet, keeps to herself, and relies more on her mechanical companion but you sense a good person in Margo. She has been more than willing to aid you, mentoring you on the proper techniques and intricacies of firearms. It is a bond that pales in comparison to the others, but it is there. Perhaps with time, she will open herself more to you.

 

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There are no choices to make

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Your final day showed no difference in routine from the others. You woke up in the morning, ate breakfast in the mess hall with Lucina and then set about shoveling your final handfuls of coal into the furnace. You had finished about noon and weary from your tiresome morning of labour, returned to your quarters for a final few hours of sleep before reaching Oldengrad.

 

   A gentle sound of tapping and tinkering wakes you from your nap. You turn onto your side, your eyes heavy with sleep. It takes a moment for you to adjust to the bleak lighting in your cabin. It is late afternoon, a light shade of red hides behind the white sky. Once your fatigue subsides and you are once again familiar with the gloomy compartment, you notice Margo sitting on the bunk opposite, taking apart a musket almost twice her size.

   “Margo?” You ask with a groan. “The captain put you to work today?”

   “He did. He tasked me with cleaning and sorting out the armoury.” Margo grabs a double-barreled pistol from her side, snaps down the barrel and inspects the insides.

   “Then why are you still here?”

   “Because A267 is doing it for me. Once I found these old worn out armaments on the shelves, I decided to take a look for myself.” You hear her mumbling something before setting the pistol down by her side and reaching for another. “If you’re looking for Lucina, she’s up on the deck practicing, and Addilyn is in the upper crew quarters.”

   “Do we know how long before we reach Oldengrad?”

   “An hour at most. The captain is preparing the boat for us. He’ll send for us once it’s ready.”

 

   You rise from the bed, feeling a slight pressure in your bladder. You had been asleep for a while and you’d only paid your morning visit to the head to relieve the cider from your bladder before a busy day had pulled you down to the engine room and your withering fatigue had dragged you back to your bed. There is an hour to spare, you had hoped to have one final sparring session before you’d leave, something you did often with Lucina, but this morning, Addilyn had asked if you’d be willing to practice with her, like the young apprentice, she wanted to learn all she could from a seasoned fighter.

 

Make your choice

 

>Go and find Lucina on the deck

 

>Go and find Addilyn in the crew quarters

 

>Pay a visit to the head and relieve yourself


>Other

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Just a note from me: Once we hit the island, I will be keeping an eye on bowels alongside bladder, though I am leaning towards keeping it hidden as a spoiler. I will also put a proper inventory and character tabs on each chapter once we arrive on Oldengrad.

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Go to Addilyn.  She asked us specificly and probably needs the practice.  

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Go to Addilyn.
And the story continues very good, I liked both chapteres a lot. Thank you!

Edited by wedgeantilles

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At the moment I am at the point of trying to find a perfect balance between simple and overly descriptive, so any feedback regarding my use of adjectives is appreciated.

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“Addilyn has been asking me about practice. I suppose it would good for her to get in some proper training.” You note to yourself, knowing Margo takes no interest.

   You grab your overcoat and shortsword from the foot of your bed. On your way out, you stop to examine yourself in the mirror by the door. You wish to at least look somewhat presentable when you show yourself. You look into the mirror taking notice of the difference in your face, the arduous journey across the land, the nights out in the cold, and your days beneath deck have played havoc on your vanity, only after your final day did you realize just how much it had affected you. You lean in closer, frowning at the sight of your beautiful complexion lost behind a jaded face. You were never a girl of outstanding beauty, but your good looks turned the heads of a few strays on your travels, long and lustrous ruby hair, emerald eyes, sharp and focussed like the eyes of a hawk, and an honest yet illusive face.  

   You depart your cabin and make your way up to find Addilyn, passing the head and deciding to make the most of your final hour. Your bladder could wait a little longer.

 

   You walk out onto the deck, enjoying the feeling of the brisk evening air against your face. Your eyes are drawn to an island looming in the distance, set beside a backdrop of the tainted dusk sky, it sends a shudder of trepidation down your spine; Oldengrad. It is within your reach, a mere two hours away. You stare as if the island returns your gaze, viewing it as more of a malevolent presence than a hunk of stone at sea, plotting, thinking, waiting for its latest victims. Beside you, unaware of your presence, stand two crewmen, a young but corpulent crewman accompanied by a balding man of elder age. “There she is, Oldengrad.” The young man converses with his compatriot.

   “Aye...I swear it gets more ominous with each passing day. What kind of people would dare travel to such a place?”

   “The foolish kind, they tell tales of the people who vanished there, yet people still come here. Speaking of fools, how long do you give those idiots we picked up in Dzarapor when they reach Oldengrad?”

   The eldest man leans forward, pondering the question for a moment. “I give the white haired lass and the Selkava girl ten minutes, if they’re lucky whatever is on that island will welcome a good pair of tits. That little fat, four-eyed bortski is only good for one thing: sustenance, for when they have no food left. And that gypsy musician? I give her ten seconds, let’s see her talent with a violin keep the demons and thralls from tearing her apart.” The crewman share a cruel laugh. You have heard enough, you walk on, clenching your fist at the mockeries, letting it slide though a part of you wished to let the men know the folly of their banterous nature, but you will rise above it as you have before. Your mind was currently occupied with more important matters than the casual conversation of foul-mouthed sailors. You walk along the deck, your eyes still locked on Oldengrad as you make your way towards the upper-levels of the ship and towards the crew quarters.

 

   Above deck, all is quiet, most of the crew are still hard at work, toiling to keep the ship moving through these waters. Once the evening settles in, these narrow corridors would come to life with the sounds of merriment and festivity as the tired crew of the Natalya drown their aches and pains with strong drink and good company. During the day, Addilyn spent her hours up here, working the small bar in the lounge as a means of paying her way on this voyage. Her kind demeanour and musical talent made her a great fit for working among people. A song fills the air, a song of melancholy and saddness that pierces your heart. The melody of the violin calls out to you, entrancing you like a sailor to the lonesome song of a siren. It is music unmatched by anything you have heard before. You follow the tantalizing tune, down the hallways of the upper deck before finally reaching its source. Your eyes widen as you witness the architect of this astounding composition sat before a huddled group of elderly crewmen. It is Addilyn, lost in the rhythm as she gracefully guides the bow along the strings of her violin, her heart and emotions being poured into each note. You stand, astounded, it had never dawned on you that the girl was such a master of her craft. You had the pleasure of hearing her music back in Dzarapor, though her idle practice in the Black Bortski was inferior, a novice moment in comparison to the masterpiece being played before you. Finally, with a powerful finale, the performance reaches its climax.

 

   Addilyn rises from her stool, giving her audience a grateful bow. The crewman, clearly moved by the music, applaud the young bard, a notion that seems to pull you in as you share in their appreciation.

   “Ah! Franziska!” Addilyn greets you with a smile. “I thought you’d be practicing with Lucina.”

   “I think Lucina will be fine. I know you’ve been wanting to practice, and we still have a bit of time before we depart.

   Glee glimmers in the girls eyes. “I was worried you’d forgotten I asked. I haven’t had much of a chance to practice!”She shoulders the violin and grabs the rapier dangling from her belt. “I’m like Zavvia Toretsky, the great dueller of the Eserith fighters guild!”

   “Well come on then, we don’t have much time.” You lead Addilyn out to the back of the ship, to a small place that had served as yours and Lucina’s private place. Here, you would be able to train without much hindrance. Sadly, Lucina is not present. “Shame, Lucina must’ve finished for the day.” You note.

   Addilyn draws her rapier and holds it out. “I am but your noble apprentice!” She announces with a proud, storyteller-esque voice. “I hope to learn much under your command, my mentor!”

 

You stand, a mentor to your eager apprentice, what do you wish to practice?

 

Offensive Duelling (Rapier)

  • The blade that strikes first is usually the one that claims victory. Run Addilyn through some practices to make her lighter on her feet.

 

Defensive Duelling (Rapier)

  • With keen reflexes and a strong mind, your movement is as great as any shield. Run Addilyn through some practices and techniques about keeping the enemy at blades length.

   

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Offensive, because defense is for pansies!

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A short chapter, but the serious stuff is here now! Both action and omorashi-wise! A big thank you to the people who've supported the first two chapters, I seriously had my doubts about this at first, but I'm glad that I'm proving a point to myself.

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With a faint laugh at Addilyn’s charming and naive demeanour, you get to work running her through some simple practices. Nothing fancy, nothing straining, a simple test of her agility and movement, having her dodge and weave the air while continuously striking forward with the rapier. Her movements are somewhat stiff, but quickly she seems to improve under your watch.

   “Ease up! Don’t let your feet stop! Keep a firm grip on the hilt!” You keep a close eye on every action she makes, waiting for smallest mistake so you can correct it. “Don’t give them a chance to strike! Keep thrusting! Weave, stride, strike, repeat!” You pace back and forth, arms crossed, and a stern expression.

   As the hour passes, Addilyn’s strides become quicker, her movement becomes more fluid and calm, she keeps up the offensive, striking forward. You can hear her talking to herself in Serkainian. “Weave, stride, strike, repeat.” She times her actions with her words. “Weave, stride, strike, repeat.”

   “Keep it up, Addilyn! Ten more times!” You order her.

   “I am Zaavia Toretsky, dueler of the fighters guild!” She says on her first strike. “I am Maxim Dos Santo, fighter of the people!” She says on her third strike, her moves becoming more confident. “I am Azuka Sazuchi, defender of the fallen king!” She yells on her seventh strike. You realize is she listing off a name of heroes as practices. “I AM ADDILYN TSERETELI, SAVIOUR OF OLDENGRAD!” She roars proudly on her final strike, twirling the rapier and sheathing it before giving a composed bow. “So how was that?”

   Just like with her music, you feel compelled to clap. “A little flashy, but your form and technique are good.”

   “Yeah, sorry about that.” She smiles and shrugs. “I...ehh...have a habit of getting carried away. But was that good enough?”

   “I thought it was.” A voice speaks behind you. You turn and see A267, clapping her hands and smiling. “That was really good, Addilyn! It was like watching a hero!”

   “Thanks, Andy!” She bows again. Lucina and Addilyn had made a habit of calling Margo’s compatriot “Andy” instead of A267.

   “A267, how long have you been there?” You inquire.

   “A few minutes. I came up to tell you that Mother said she’d like to speak you, Franziska, but I got distracted watching Addilyn. I’m packing up our stuff now and we’ll be ready to leave soon.” A267 walks off toward the front of the boat, two large sacks hanging from her shoulder.

   “I guess I should go talk to Margo. Are you coming, Addilyn?”

   Her face flushes red. “If you don’t mind, I really need to visit the privy. I, kind of, lost track when we were training.” She tries to slyly disguise her desperation by crossing her legs, but it’s still obvious. “I’ll catch up with you guys, okay?” She backs off slowly, her slow pace quickly becoming an awkward jog. You can’t help but find her awkwardness and politeness quite...cute. With training over, you head to the cabin.  

 

   You make your way back to your quarters. Lucina is present, filling her satchel with a few provisions she acquired from the crew: a small sack of food, a flask, and some vials of blade oil, once she has everything packed up, she departs and makes her way up to the deck, giving you a firm nod of her head on the way past. Margo is working on her rivet gun, tinkering with the insides while A267 is packing up various supplies from under both yours and Margo’s bed.

   “Is everything ready?” You ask Margo.

   She returns a nod. “A267 has loaded our supplies onto the boat. I spoke to the captain, he’s letting us use one of the recovery vessels. It’ll take us to Oldengrad and then be pulled back to the Natalya, meaning…”

   “That once we’re there, we have no way off the island.”

   Margo nods again. “Not that it matters, since it is said most freighters or large boats that reached the port were said to have never been seen again, it would most likely be the same for the Natalya. Anyway, let’s get up there. We need to get there before it’s late.”

   

   You prepare to make your way toward the boat. On your way out of the room, Margo stops you, placing a hand before you. She reaches beneath her cloak and pulls out a pistol. Your pistol. “I almost forgot, I found some parts compatible with the model Vasili sold you, so I made some alterations.” Instead of snapping down the barrel like the pistol was originally designed, Margo yanks the barrel forward. The firearm clicks, and two empty casings eject from the opening in the rear of the barrel.  “Dual-barrel, designed to automatically eject the casings.”

   You take the pistol and examine it for yourself. “You took apart some of the pistols you found?”

   “Just one...or two. I needed the parts to make the new barrel. I’ve wanted to test out a new prototype for a while. All I needed was a pistol frame and some magnets.” She grabs your hand and brings the pistol down to her level. “It’s a less reliable design than a simple break action but a lot more convenient. When the barrel is pulled forward, a spring ejects both bullets...regardless of whether they’ve been fired, so think twice before firing one and reloading. When you’ve reloaded, simply just…” She demonstrates by loading a bullet into the chamber and pressing the trigger, causing the barrel of the gun to snap back into place. “It’s my own design.”

   “Thank you, Margo. It’s appreciated.” You holster the pistol in your belt.

   

   Back outside, the dark evening has finally set in. Oldengrad is now but a silhouette looming in the distance, concealed by a veil of night. A small boat is being prepared by some crewmates, a recovery vessel commonly used to recover cargo lost at sea. That was your way onto the island. The boat would take you to shore, and then be returned to the Natalya. Once you set foot on Oldengrad...there was no returning. You take a deep breath, settling a wave a fear. You approach the boat with Margo. Lucina, Addilyn, who must’ve made her way here after her emergency run to the privy, and A267 are already aboard, making a few final checks over their supplies.

   “A267, did you make sure to bring everything?” Margo asks her android compatriot.

   A267 drops the satchel she is checking and moves to the side of the boat. She picks up Margo, holding her like a child holds her favourite toy, and lifts her into the boat. “Everything is accounted for, mother.” The Android salutes before sitting Margo on her knee. She seems unbothered by the idea of her compatriot treating her like a newborn baby. Margo sits on the androids knee, removes her tall pointed hat, revealing her black hair tied up in pigtails. She turns to her side, puts her head against A267’s stomach and nods off to sleep.

  

   As you climb into the boat, your uneasiness persists, a fear which hangs in the back of your mind being pushed to the forefront of your thoughts. You take a seat and try to ignore the feeling, keeping a strong face in company. Addilyn sits beside you, she breathes heavily, her eyes refusing to look away from her own feet. “Addilyn, are you okay?” You ask, sensing a similar feeling of fear in her.

   “Hmm?” Addilyn replies, her eyes still staring down, “yeah...it’s just...I’ve heard so many stories about this place in the recent weeks...it’s a little scary, that’s all.”

   “Keep a strong head, Addilyn,” You say, “Remember why you’re doing this.”

   “Right...if we do this...they can have somebody to look up to…” Saying that aloud seems to put a smile on her face, but the fear is still there, poorly hidden behind it.

   Lucina sits her sword and satchel down by her side and settles into her seat. “According to the Captain, we’ll be dropped off at Portar, a mining town on the western coast of the island. Once we arrive there, we can plan our next course of action.”

   Addilyn leans back and crosses her arms. “Do you guys mind if I get some sleep?”

   “Not at all, Addilyn. Get some shuteye.” You look over to Lucina. “What about you?”

   “I wouldn’t mind an hour or two, but don’t you need somebody to keep lookout with you?”

   You snap your finger, a blood red aura emanates from the palm of your hand. “If I detect something out of the ordinary, I’ll wake you up.” It had been a while since you had used the demon gaze, the power that sought out the presence of other beings that share your blood magic, it could sometimes be an ability that was taxing on your strength, but it’s reliability  was unmatched by even the most powerful magical sensors. “I’ll keep watch for us.”

   Neither Addilyn or Lucina think twice before drifting off to sleep. You are envious of how easy sleep comes to them at a time like this. You feel awake, focussed...and fearful. Amidst the fear your mind wanders to the feeling in your bladder. You had given it no mind for the final hour and it still wasn’t enough to distract you. If it became too much for you to handle, it would simply be a matter of unbuckling your trousers, hovering your backside over the side and emptying yourself into the sea. Not a desirable choice by any means...but sometimes you don’t get to be picky, you've certainly gone in worse places in the past.

A mechanical whirr begins buzzing beside you. You feel the boat being lowered into the water. The vessel lands with a gentle splash and you hear a gentle rumble as the recovery vessels engine comes to life. It is a night of bitter cold winds and gentle seas. You pull your overcoat around yourself to try and warm yourself up. “What I wouldn’t give for a cup of that wine, right now.” You mutter to yourself, the thought of that warm, sweet spiced wine back in Dzarapor hangs on the tip of your tongue, just thinking of the way it warmed your cold bones was enough to keep you warm at this moment. For now, you look out toward Oldengrad, grasping the hilt of your silver sword. It was going to be at least a few hours before the boat landed on the shore and you have only yourself for company. You sit quietly, steeling yourself for the trials ahead.

 

End of Chapter I

 

Upgrade Acquired: Double barreled pistol: With some minor adjustments, Margo has converted the single barrel Vasili sold you into a double barrel. She has also used a prototype of her own design to automatically eject the bullets when the barrel is pulled forward.

 

Addilyn Tsereteli is now an offensive dueler (Rapier only): After your practice with Addilyn, she is now more confident with striking and moving during combat. In close quarters combat, Addilyn will now be more competent fighting more aggressively.

 

 

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Additional note: From this point onward, each part of the story will begin with all the stats: so just a recap of what we’re keeping track of.

 

Bladder

 

Bowel (This will probably be hidden behind a spoiler tag.)

 

Health

 

Mental State

 

Illnesses, afflictions, diseases

 

Relationships

 

Inventory

Edited by JustCallum

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Posted (edited)

This took some time, but tada! There might be a slight break after this while I try and find myself a writing sweet spot, because I still feel like I'm doing a mediocre job in some regards, something I intend to fix.

As usual, somethings look wrong or needs improvement, make sure to point it out. Still trying to find my writing groove here.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

After a long and quiet journey, which had felt longer thanks to the fullness of your bladder. You finally approach the island of Oldengrad. A thick fog has formed on the sea, making navigation impossible for the final stretch, though after awhile, the fog subsides and you can begin to see the mining town of Portar. From a distance, and thinly concealed by the remains of the ghastly fog, the town appears mundane. You spy a small harbour, where a frigate of fair size sits at dock, surrounded by smaller vessels. Beside the harbour stands a lighthouse, it’s torch extinguished, leaving the lone structure and the sea around it in darkness. The homes and buildings around the town are hidden in the night, a few dark rooftops are visible, though nothing more. Finally, your eyes look up to the hills that sit on both sides of the town, looming overhead, stands two large excavators, their dominate stature reigning over the mining town, almost casting it in their shadows. It is a simple sight, save for the darkness, something that makes you ponder if the town is even inhabited. There are no lanterns in the dock, no faint flickers of candlelight in the distant windows, no signs of any distinguishable presence. You begin to wonder just how much truth there may be to the tales told in the taverns on your travels.

 

   Your boat drifts toward the harbour, the clinking of the recovery chain rattling behind. You rouse your party from their slumber, informing them of your arrival in Portar. The party shakes off their weathered eyes and groggy stares. Lucina takes one final check through her satchel, Addilyn tests her bow, taking aim and pulling back the string before letting it fire, Margo does not budge from the knee of her android, the girl yawns with a slight grimace adorning her face before she picks up her hat. The party seems ready, if not a touch weary, the allies you made in Dzarapor, now ready to stand by your side against the unknown.

 

   Finally, at long last, your voyage nears its end. The boat passes the lighthouse and with your entrance into the town, the details of the its darkness become apparent. A faint smell of burning hangs in the air coupled with a foul stench familiar to you: burning flesh. Along the side of the lighthouse, a desperate message is scrawled out, carved into the brick, “HELP US” It pleads, you can sense the fear and panic etched out in those words, you place a strong grip on your sword hoping you aren’t too late to heed the call. Uneasiness and concern settle within you, the mysteries of this island the culprits of your worry. You have no clue what has happened here, no idea why the stink of burning flesh corrupts the air or why people are so desperate to take in any soul brave enough to look upon their etched out cries for help. It is worse as you arrive in the harbour, seeing the tattered sails of the boats, also bearing the calls of help, painted along the white sails in crimson. You begin to think that this town is in fact empty...or at the very least...there are a few unfortunate souls alive.

 

   The moment the boat stops against the harbour, you take no second thought about climbing out. When you stand, you feel the weight of your bladder, a painful sense of fullness causing you great discomfort. You curse quietly, knowing there isn’t a more inopportune time to break away and relieve yourself, but your urge to open the floodgates is almost too much to bear. You grit your teeth, clench your hands and push onwards, putting your desire to drop your trousers and let go in front of your party members to the back of your mind.

   “I’ll go scout the waterfront while you get our things off the boat.” You announce to everybody. “I don’t have a good feeling about this place.”

   “Hold on,” Lucina calls you back, “take this with you, and don’t stray out of reach. We have no idea what in the hell's has happened here.” She rummages to the bottom of her satchel and pulls out a brass lantern. “Don’t burn all the oil. We’re gonna need it.” She hands you the lantern. “Addilyn, Andy, help me unload the boat.”

   “Her name isn’t-”

   “That isn’t important right now, Margo.”

   Margo sighs and puts on her hat. “I am going with Franziska. A267, make sure to assemble your rifle once it’s off the boat.”

   The android salutes. “Aye aye mother!” She says with an odd level of enthusiasm.

   Margo grabs her own rifle and orders A267 to lift her out of the boat, a command the android obeys. She accompanies you up the stairs and onto the waterfront. With Margo in your presence you are forced to contain your bladder on the force of will alone. It wouldn’t make you look acceptable with a hand pushed against your urethra. You walk somewhat stiffly, trying to keep your thighs pushed together without making any signs of your need obvious. But you notice an odd motion in Margo’s step as you climb the stairs to the waterfront, she also seems to have a somewhat stiff spring in her step as well as a pained frown slightly visible beneath the rim of her hat. “Margo? You’re not hurt, are you?”

   “I’m fine…” The engineer doesn’t even look at you. “Let’s just find a place to seek refuge for the moment. This place makes my skin crawl.” You see that flash of red on her cheeks, similar to the night on the Natalya. Could it be that Margo was in a similar predicament to yourself, a dire need to relieve herself but restricted by her refusal to go alone? No doubt her small frame denied her a strong bladder. She had been asleep for a few hours and you did notice she didn't stop to use the head herself before departing on the recovery boat.

   “Margo, are you sure you’re okay?”

   “I said I’m fine.” She croaks.

   Up on the waterfront, it is another sight to behold, a row of small shops overlooking the harbour, their windows and walls barricaded and battered with unknown intent. The ground is stained with the dark taint of blood, both freshly drawn as if spilled recently, and dried to the stone. Along the rooftops and storefronts, you notice a number of gun placements.

   “They’re automated.” Margo points up at them. “That wire…” Her finger leads a copper wire running along the rooftop and the ground. “It must lead to a generator.” Her finger traces the wire, you watch as Margo turns and points up towards the lighthouse. “That would explain why the lighthouse is inactive; They’ve used the generator to connect the gun placements.” She walks off, towards one of the placements. “It’s a simple turret.” She examines one of the placements closely, just barely able to look due to her height. “But it could be possible there are people alive in-” Margo stops, a grimace runs across her face before she continues. “Let’s just find a place to take refuge, I’ll explain there.”

   You sigh. “I’m sure we should be able to sort ourselves out in one of these places.”

 

   Margo appears to also be standing on her last legs, her poor bladder struggling to hold back any longer, a fate you have also fallen victim to. You wonder if taking refuge while you plan a next course of action would be wiser than just standing out in the streets, uncertain of what has transpired in the town. If fortune favoured you, perhaps one of these stores would have a lavatory for you to use, but given the condition of the destroyed storefronts and lack of lighting, you wouldn’t be surprised if nothing worked in this town any longer. Should you fear your search would be in vain, you notice an alleyway between two of the former stores. With the lantern and a blade by your side, you may be able to find a small amount of privacy and allow your bladder to empty out onto the stone. It may also be worth using your demon’s gaze to sense anything around you, it was an idea you had considered, but feared as pushing your mind and body in order to use it may be more than your bladder could handle.

 

What do you wish to do?

 

>Take refuge in one of the nearby buildings

 

>Relieve yourself in the alleyway (Bladder: Desperate)

 

>Wait for the rest of your party

 

>Another option


>Support: Use Demon’s Gaze to scout the area

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Franziska Audenveil

Status: Healthy

Mental State: Concerned

 

Class: Monster Hunter

Bladder Capacity: Medium

Mental Strength: High

 

Abilities

Defensive: Blood barrier: You call upon your blood magic, sacrificing your own life force to create a magical barrier to protect yourself and your allies.

 

 

Offensive: Blood chain: You call upon your blood magic, using your own blood and magic to form a magical chain that pulls in enemies.

 

 

Support: Demon Gaze: You call upon your blood magic, seeking out the presence of any being that possesses blood magic.

 

 

Passive: Monster Specialist: You can identify most types of demons, aberrations or horrors and the means to deal with them. You can also craft special bombs and potions to aid in combat. In addition your experience with dark forces makes you more resistant to stress or mental breakdowns.

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Inventory

 

Silver Shortsword: Your trusty blade, restored by Vasili the blacksmith, this sword will work well against the unholy or undead.

 

Double barreled pistol: A pistol purchased from Vasili. After Margo Sortirov got her hands on it, she was able to make some adjustments. The gun automatically ejects the shells when reloading, allowing for a faster reload.

 

Canteen: A canteen with the insignia of the Selkava. It is currently full.

 

Hunters Apparel: A simple tattered set of armour, including an overcoat, leather gauntlets and a leather pauldron. It’s light and keeps you warm on the cold eastern nights.

 

Selkava Almanac: A valuable and powerful tool for any monster hunter. This book houses centuries of knowledge on the history and key points of many monsters, including their strengths and weaknesses.

 

Demon Blood: A multi-purpose fluid, harvested from your latest kill. When consumed Demons blood allows you to use one extra ability. Alternatively, it can be applied to a sword to deal more damage against humans. You have also learned of a blacksmith on the island who may be able to fuse your silver sword with this blood, if he is found.

Edited by JustCallum

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Take refuge in one of the buildings and maybe pee into something there.  

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Let's find somewhere to pee, away from Margo for decency's sake.

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The situation is unclear, we have entered an possibly hostile area - we shouldn't spread out far and we should be ready if we run in any danger. And we aren't ready with a bursting bladder.
Margo is a women like we are and she probably needs to pee too.
Nothing to be embarassed about.
Just take a few steps in an alley and pee there.

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Aaw, Margo needs to pee too. How cute.

I'd say we hold until she wets herself, then we can wet ourself too just so we can be a comfort for her.

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