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“As a society, we simply can not tolerate the use of H2O. Let’s make this very clear, the substance is not a soft drug, and it endangers the basic functioning of our civilization every day.” “May

(authors note: sorry for the slow start, sometimes it will take a few days, but I will surely continue this)   You put on your coat and decide to take a walk towards the community center. It’s

You decide to wait this one out; it’s obvious that you’re not allowed back there, and you do not want to anger your parole officer. A few minutes later, you finally hear her voice, and because of the

You decide to wait this one out; it’s obvious that you’re not allowed back there, and you do not want to anger your parole officer. A few minutes later, you finally hear her voice, and because of the open door, you can overhear parts of a heated conversation in the hallway.

 

“… no, what you are asking her to do is illegal !”, you hear Trudy shout.

“What I’m asking her to do is to perform a service to the community - community service! Come on woman, that’s the whole point, that is your job!”, argues an unknown male voice.

“No, my job is to guide her to the right path again, not to make her do immoral things!”

“Calm down, Trudy,” another male voice chimes in, “I command you to back in with miss Reina and follow police orders, and that’s final!”

“I took this job because I believe I can help people, but this… I can’t do this. If that’s what you want, find someone else to do it, I’ll go back in and tell her to come back tomorrow.”

 

Trudy marches in, visibly upset, stares at the open door and seems to realize you might have overheard parts of the classified conversation. “Who left this door open…”, she mutters, and turns back to you. “Good, you’re still here.” (law enforcement trust level +1) 

“There seems to be some issue with the paperwork…”, your parole officer says with a straight face, and she hands you over the application papers of the rehabilitation clinic. “You should come back tomorrow, we will have this solved by then. I’m off duty then, but another officer will help you.”

Without further explanation, she ushers you outside, and suddenly, you are back on the streets.

 

Before you even start your walk towards the alley to meet with Freyja, a woman wearing a pink tracksuit violently runs into you. You fall on your buttocks and you drop your papers onto the pavement. Without even excusing herself, your attacker runs further down the street. You curse her and pick up your papers again, and then notice that there’s a note attached to them that wasn’t there before; the woman wearing the tracksuit must have slipped it in. You read the yellow piece of paper which says:

 

“Medusa, show me I can trust you again. Whenever I do, you'll receive my new phone number.  Love, Hera.”

 

So that’s why she didn’t pick up her phone earlier! It makes sense, though; it wouldn’t be the first time that an H2O convict would make a deal with the police in exchange for sentence reduction. So you had to earn her trust again, but how? How would you be able to do that, without being able to contact her? In the distance, you still see the woman in the pink tracksuit running away. She’s no doubt from Hera’s clan; you could chase her and try to get some information out of her. But at the same time, Freyja was waiting for you in the alley. Again, you are in conflict with yourself.

 

A. Chase the woman in the pink tracksuit down the streets so you can get more information about Hera.

B. Hurry towards the alley where you agreed to meet with Freyja.

 

current H2O scene trust level: 3/10

current law enforcement trust level: 5/10

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You check the time on your phone and see that you are already five minutes late, and you realize that the woman in the pink tracksuit is already so far away that it’s improbable that you will catch her. You hurry towards the alleyway where you met Freyja, hoping she’s still there.

 

Out of breath from running as fast as you could, you arrive there, and smile as you see Freyja standing at the back of the alley, holding a bottle in her hands. She is now wearing a blue winter coat, which is more appropriate for the season compared than the blazer she was wearing before.

“Th… th… thanks for… waiting for me, I got… held up somewhere, sorry…

Your new friend shrugs and shows the bottle to you. “Well, the important thing is that you came, right? So, I’m willing to sell you my H2O for…”

 

Suddenly, a blue light flashes into the alley.

“Police! Hands behind your back, and slowly approach the street!”

Fuck… You could not believe that this was truly happening… only a day after your release from jail. It couldn’t be a coincidence; they must have followed you from the community center, and you hurried here so fast that you hadn’t checked for followers… Standing in an alley wasn’t a crime, of course. But the possession of H2O was, and the evidence was right in Freyja’s hand. If only there was a way to get rid of the H2O…

 

You worry about yourself, but also about Freyja; after all, it was your fault that got her into this sticky situation. You want to help her out, but you also don’t want to return to jail yourself. You don’t see the police officer yet, which means that they can’t see you either. You have a few seconds to decide what you are going to do before the police enter the alley…

 

A. Free suggestion this time, you can suggest anything (I will adjust trust levels as I see fit compared to the suggestion).

B. In case you don’t want to come up with your own suggestions, I’ve prepared some possibilities;
B1. You snitch on Freyja; you quickly run towards the police and tell them you caught an H2O user (law enforcement trust level +2, H2O scene trust level -3)
B2. You tell Freyja to quickly drink the H2O to get rid of the evidence (law enforcement trust level +1, H2O scene trust level -2)
B3. You snatch the bottle out of Freyja’s hand, and quickly drink the H2O to get rid of the evidence (law enforcement trust level -2, H2O scene trust level +1)

current H2O scene trust level: 3/10
current law enforcement trust level: 5/10

- - - 

Another question. (You don’t have to answer this question, but you can if you want to)
I recently introduced the H2O and law enforcement trust level meters, and in a later post I also added the impact score of each choice. But now I’m starting to worry that by adding the impact score, this interactive game is starting to become just a mathematical numbers game. What do you think? From a scale to unpredictable to predictable, what do you think is the best format?

- Ditch the trust level meter, ditch the impact score
- Keep the trust level meter, but ditch the impact score
- Keep both

And one last note: I’m going away for 10 days, so don’t expect the next update very soon.


 

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  • 2 weeks later...

B3

If you're worried about it being too much of a numbers game, just ditch the impact score with all the options you give. That way we have to think for ourselves what would impact it best and you can then reveal the impact based on what happens in the next chapter? Like only giving -2 law enforcement trust when that gets relevant from the text. That way you can keep surprising us about what's gonna happen. And also maybe saves you from having to balance the options so we don't all choose the "optimal" thing. So your second option seems like a good one to me.

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