Pie 22 2

<robertvance> is this everyone for tonight?

<ADamiani|2> Yo

<RandBrittain> Did Elliott say he could not appear?

<robertvance> Elliott is going to the Doctor Who premiere because he's a jerk.

<RandBrittain> He will probably be eaten by a dalek.

<RandBrittain> But anyway, I will do my best tonight!

<RandBrittain> If I am carried away by an angry yogurt culture, or possibly a customer, you will hopefully be patient!

<Holden> brb

<Sid> Hmm, anyone have suggestions for a Nobilis playlist?

<Hollyhock God> Depends on which god you have in mind!

<Hollyhock God> …I kind of want to see someone compose themes for Entropy I and Entropy II.

<Pascale> "Call Me Maybe?"

<Pascale> *destroys everything it touches*

<Hollyhock God> We need to recruit some amazing musicians.

<Hollyhock God> But let's see, was there any lingering business from last week?

<Hollyhock God> Nobody has any Wounds still, I don't think. Jane took a few but I think she'd be better by now.

<Hollyhock God> And nobody brought out a Word to my recollection.

<Hollyhock God> Although I guess you do have some wrecked plantation house to repair.

<Hollyhock God> But yeah, we can begin afresh.

<Pascale> "Do we have, like, a budget for this, or something?"

<Hollyhock God> Anyway… in the traditional course of Noble events, tonight's events begin with a party invitation in the mail.

<Hollyhock God> Unlike many of the invites you get, this one is hand-drawn in colored pencil.

<Sid> Who's it from?

<Hollyhock God> It's signed by the Viscountess of Strategy, Molly Lee Brown.




<Hollyhock God> There's a little drawing of Molly herself with a watermelon and a rocket launcher.

<Jane> (repairs character sheet) I get back all MP right?

<Hollyhock God> That's so.

<Pascale> Yeah, new story.

<Sid> This invitation is adorable. Clearly Molly is the most dangerous frenemy we will ever meet.

<Hollyhock God> You know Molly a bit. She is famous both for her cookies and for her mastery of all the arts of war.

<Jane> "I do like games. Also watermelon."

<Jane> "And occasionally small arms fire."

<Pascale> "What, seriously?"

<Pascale> "Nobles do summer barbecue?"

<Sid> "Barbecue is delicious!"

<Sid> "Why wouldn't we want to do that?"

<Jane> "What kind of horrible nightmare world doesn't do summer barbecue?"

<Hollyhock God> I thought you liked horrible nightmare worlds.

<Jane> Oh yeah. Ours.

<Hollyhock God> Does it have barbecue?

<Jane> I think it mostly has vampires and bone-gnawing bridge trolls.

<Jane> The trolls might have barbecue.

<Pascale> The vampires barbecue in the daylight.

<Pascale> Pascale shrugs "I suppose I just kind of assumed there'd be…. I don't know, more waltzes on dying stars at the end of time, less potatoe salad."

<Sid> "Cosmic grandeur is nice and all, but at the end of the day, you've got to get something in your belly."

<Sid> "Well. Unless you don't. But even then, it's nice."

<Hollyhock God> It's also hard to top.

<Jane> "Well, it might be barbecue on dying stars at the end of time. Where's it say the meet-up's at?"

<Sid> "So..what should we bring?"

<Hollyhock God> I mean, it's within your power to have the dance on the dying stars, but then you have to come up with something for the next month.

<Hollyhock God> Something for barbeque! But fancy.

<Sid> "Frakenstein ribs?"

<Hollyhock God> Maybe a watermelon that was watered with the blood of God himself?

<Hollyhock God> Although the blood of God is nothing but trouble.

<Hollyhock God> Goddamn talking chairs.

<Hollyhock God> Or something. It's pretty casual, although that doesn't mean you shouldn't prepare something impressive for the potluck.

Jane frowns, realizing nothing she can really do is very summer-appropriate. Also, that she doesn't know how to cook sans miracles.

Hollyhock God wonders vaguely how long people want to spend on preparing impressive watermelons and figuring out what to wear.

Jane snaps her fingers. "I've got it. We bring the world's best secret recipe barbecue sauce."

<Pascale> "And odds are they're expecting us to bring sweets…."

<Sid> Where's our chancel located relative to the real world?

<Hollyhock God> Louisiana!

<Sid> All right, then. Sid's bringing gumbo.

<Hollyhock God> You'll be headed to Fort Worth, which is the location of Locus Catelleya.

<Hollyhock God> I feel like Sid's decay powers could be harnessed somehow in the field of cheeses.

<Hollyhock God> But whatever.

<Hollyhock God> Is anybody going to wear anything worth the mentioning?

<Jane> ((Vance doesn't know what our chancel is even named, does he?))

<Hollyhock God> It's Locus Caviel, and it's basically Castlevania: Mardi Gras edition.

<Pascale> (Locus Bowie?)

<Jane> Is it generally considered more appropriate to go situation-appropriate or to flaunt your Noble-ness?

<Sid> Sid is wearing a favorite seersucker suit that he plucked out of a graffiti mural a little while back.

<Hollyhock God> Hard to say!

<Hollyhock God> I mean, you should probably wear picnic clothes, but if you want to wear a pumpkin bikini made entirely out of phoenix cloth, you might be able to carry it off.

Jane is going to go with the best approximation of "summer dress" she can rummage out of the chancel. Which is probably going to come off at least 0.3 on the Elvira scale anyway, because yeah, Locus Caviel.

<Hollyhock God> It's all totally contextual whether you want to lean on a literal candy cane or look like a basically normal person who just happens to be the god of sugary things.

<Pascale> Pascale has her Zelda T ("It's a Secret to Everyone") + Jeans

<Jane> ((Pascale is the best goddamn character ever lol))

<Pascale> (heh!)

<Hollyhock God> I recall my first campaign where the Power of Fire decided to come to a very costume ball in a Statue of Liberty outfit she bought at a costume shop.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, off to Fort Worth!

<Hollyhock God> In the ghastlymobile or something.

<Pascale> The, er, bat-mobile?

<Hollyhock God> Locus Catteleya looks like a very normal suburban household from the outside, with a minivan and everything.

<Sid> Sid recoils a little from the middle-classiness of it all, but is generally okay with these surroundings!

<Jane> (I am thinking I may need to reconsider the motorcycle thing after this session as it hasn't really come up yet and the group seems to need more reliable transportation than piling onto the back of a bike like a circus act)

<Hollyhock God> This is pretty much because that's exactly what it was before Catteleya poked a tendril up into Molly's basement and made the place into a Chancel.

<Pascale> "No, seriously, they live here? Without…. I dunno, random Simon Belmont attacks and everything? Is that an option?"

<Sid> "Simon Belmont attacks, neighborhood kids up to no good. Baaasically the same thing."

<Sid> "Except for the whips and the draculas and stuff."

<Hollyhock God> Molly greets you at the front door and ushers you in. She has just made cookies.

<Hollyhock God> It appears to be impossible to arrive at a time when Molly has not just finished cookies.
Jane is okay with this as a universal constant.

<Hollyhock God> Yeah, it's amazing that people raid you guys and not here.

<Sid> Sid presents Molly with a big bowl of seafood gumbo, which has been miraculously stripped of any qualities of tastelessness or griminess with a Lesser Sacrifice. While she deals with the bowl, he pockets a cookie.

<Jane> Seriously, all we have is draculas all the time.

<Hollyhock God> Molly disagrees. "Draculas is cute. With proper training."

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, she leads you into the basement, past her collection of cookie molds. And then past her collection of war games.

<Hollyhock God> And then past her collection of actual war memorabilia.

<Pascale> "Yes, but Sid, we live on the bad side of town. We also have neighborhood kids up to no good! My room was /vandalized/! There was graffiti and everythi—oh. We're here."

<Hollyhock God> And then past her collection of extremely modern and deadly-looking weaponry. Is that a suitcase nuke? You hope not.

<Jane> Is there a tank?

<Hollyhock God> And then back up another flight of stairs into Locus Catteleya.

<Hollyhock God> The tank has a cookie painted on the side.

<Jane> That is true dedication.

<Sid> "So, Molly, how long have you lived here?" Sid asks, nervously eyeing the assorted arguments.

<Jane> So what's Locus Catteleya like?

<Hollyhock God> "Oh, thirty years now," she says. She looks to be exactly thirty; quite round and pink-faced.

<Hollyhock God> It looks like somebody took the most beautiful country on Cneph's green Earth and laced it liberally with military base.

<Hollyhock God> And, on this particular occasion, with picnic tables!

<Pascale> Pascale pokes at stuff, which probably clutters down or goes off or something and makes her eeep! before continuing with forced nonchalance.

<Hollyhock God> Molly has set a bunch of them up on top of the closed doors of an underground silo.

<Hollyhock God> Which is where you find the other guests, conveniently arranged in front of the potato chips.

<Pascale> "Sooo…. are we the first to arrive? How many people are coming?"
Jane breathes deep. "I love the smell of barbecue and/or napalm in the morning."

<Hollyhock God> Molly considers this. "I bet we could spruce up the napalm with a bit of BBQ. Do yah think it would help?"

<Jane> Actually this is the first summer barbecue she can recall being invited to. But it does smell pretty good. Well, the barbecue. Not so much the napalm.

<Sid> Sid goes in for socializing/chips, and begins introducing himself to the assembled guests.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, we'll do introductions in line.

<Hollyhock God> At one end, you find Molly's Siblings, Paolo Monteverdi and Canaan Reyes. They're both young men about Pascale's age.

<Hollyhock God> Paolo, the Power of Wisdom, is wearing a seersucker suit of his own and smiling. Canaan, the Power of Lightning, is wearing a T-shirt and jeans and looks uncomfortable.

<Pascale> So, painfully young.

<Sid> Being a Power and growing up. It's hard.

<Pascale> (Another Lightning? Heh!)

<Hollyhock God> There's a general buzz in the air that encourages the belief that you might as well keep safely out of his personal space.

<Pascale> "Yo—" ….wait, let's well keep safely out of his personal space. Get a hotdog. Yes. And chips.

<Hollyhock God> At the next table, you are introduced to the Powers of Fruits and Vegetables, Gracie Woodrow and Isaiah Hemingway.

<Hollyhock God> You already know their Sister, Idrina Constantapopulos, the Power of the Harvest, who introduces them.

<Hollyhock God> They are all disgustingly healthy. You think your teeth may have just flossed themselves, but they're pleasant enough.

<Hollyhock God> Isaiah is a freckly fellow who's trying to look like he isn't seven feet tall, which he is.
Jane smiles as she greets Idrina, growing increasingly aware that so far she and Sid seem to be the only particularly "dark" Estates present. It feels a bit incongruous.

<Sid> Sid sidles up to Canaan, poking juuust into his personal space. It's supposed to be friendly, but it's mostly just an instinctive rebellion against the spooky stay-away-from-me aura that hangs over him.

<Hollyhock God> Down the way, you see your old friend Painter Hammond with someone that you recognize as the Power of Curses, who you don't know.

<Pascale> (Oh. Wow. This isn't the right episode, but Pascale totally needs to have to try to show she can totally count as 'dark'.)

<Hollyhock God> Sid feels a sudden and rather shocking emotion welling up in him as he gets within Canaan's arm's length. Your heart cracks open for a moment and you find yourself looking at the guy from a perspective of complete emotional rawness.

<Jane> (Painter Hammond, Painter Hammond…)

<Jane> (compiling an NPC list for his own reference)

<Hollyhock God> You get the picture of somebody who is both intensely lonely but who feels unable to interact with others appropriately for some reason. It's a sad and touching picture and it's not something you feel comfortable seeing in a new acquaintance.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, you find yourself developing a strong opinion of him, whatever it is.

<Hollyhock God> Unless you want to put some Strike into not doing so?

<Sid> Sid procures a pair of beers from a nearby cooler and passes one to the Power of Lightning, a gesture straddling the line between sympathy and utter infatuation.

Jane notices Sid's weird moonfaced behavior, and gently snags him by the back of his coat and drags him on down the line to continue meeting the other guests.

<Hollyhock God> This is difficult because Canaan has instinctively backflipped over a bench.

<Hollyhock God> He tries hard to make it look like he meant to do that.

<Hollyhock God> This does not succeed.

<Hollyhock God> Molly is forced to perform a miracle of hostessing and suddenly smash a watermelon with a ten-pound mallet.

<Pascale> "oooooh, kay then." Pascale goes looking for Condiments

<Hollyhock God> Everyone suddenly finds themselves holding a piece of watermelon!

<Hollyhock God> For the record, Painter is Autumn. I made a list on the wiki!

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, you're introduced to Fruits and Vegetables. Gracie is gently shifting the colors of her watermelon as she tosses it from hand to hand.

<Pascale> Pascale shrugs, accepts it, and bites in, finding a place to take a seat and figure out what all this is actually about….

<Hollyhock God> "Do you think blue melons would be popular?" she asks.

<Hollyhock God> "Nope," her brother interjects.

<Pascale> "Well, the whole square-melons thing worked out?"

<Jane> "The green and red is kind of a classic," Jane opines, partaking. She looks around for salt.

<Hollyhock God> The salt is in the first place you look!

<Sid> Sid mopes out of Jane's grip, and glumly eats a slice of watermelon, gnawing it down to the rind. "Blue on the inside, or the outside?"

<Hollyhock God> "Maybe… blue on the outside, purple inside?" She demonstrates.

<Hollyhock God> "No…. that feels like a fruit roll-up or something."

Jane pauses in the middle of salting her watermelon. "It looks a bit indecent," she adds.

<Sid> "What if you, like, took a watermelon, but scooped all the inside parts out and replaced them with watermelon slushie?"

<Sid> Sid, as a child, did not eat his fruits of vegetables.

<Hollyhock God> Gracie considers this.

<Hollyhock God> She waves a hand around vaguely and produces a slushie-melon.

<Hollyhock God> She locks down at it uncertainly.

<Hollyhock God> "Nope," says Isaiah, grinning.

<Hollyhock God> Nevertheless it looks delicious to Sid.

<Jane> "You would need some kind of straw capable of piercing a watermelon," Jane muses.

<Pascale> "Or fangs?"

<Hollyhock God> Molly produces said straw from her apron and hands it to you.

<Hollyhock God> "Weapons-grade straw," she says. "Got it in China."

Jane passes the straw to Sid.

Jane also contemplates melonpires, but trying to create one in the middle of a summer barbecue seems inappropriate.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, as Sid impales his slushie-melon and devours it with all evident enjoyment… I'm not exactly sure how drinking it works, really… the last guest arrives.

<Hollyhock God> He apologizes for being late, but he claims that since it's late Summer, Summer must be late.

<Pascale> OK. So. We generally goof around and barbecue for a while, questioning the wisdom of wisdom's suit, eating food, that sort of thing.

<Hollyhock God> Hey, Sid wore the first suit!

<Sid> Yes, but mine's basically body-painted on. Totally different!

Jane waits for an opportunity to get Molly alone for a moment when she's not hostessing actively.

<Sid> (AFK for a sec)

<Jane> also Sid that is horrifying

<Hollyhock God> Oh, woe, that the first thing I write Wisdom as doing is terrific folly!

<Hollyhock God> Let us assume that Jane succeeds.

<Jane> "So, Mol, we've got a bit of a problem I was hoping you could give a bit of advice on."

<Hollyhock God> "Oh?" Molly pauses for a moment.

<Jane> "We may have saved Christmas from a concerted Excrucian attack by convincing the Excrucians in question that it would be more fun to attack us instead."

<Jane> "We could use some strategic advice."

<Hollyhock God> "It's amazing how often that one works," Molly agrees. Her housewifeness abates for a bit, replaced by the cool knowingness of the queen of all battles, now that it's clear that she's being addressed in that capacity.

<Hollyhock God> But first, I am going across the street to order a pizza.

<Jane> that is unquestionably the best decision

<Sid> backsies

<Jane> wb

<Pascale> WB

<Hollyhock God> Okay!

<Hollyhock God> The thought of future pizza now sustains me.

<Hollyhock God> "The first thing," says Molly, "is to look at Chancel security. There's also Estate security, but you can't really secure an entire Estate, except maybe if you're Paranoia."

<Hollyhock God> "I mean, take a look at your place. Draculas and wolfmens is all nice and all, but without direction, what good are they really doing you?

<Jane> "Well, we have a chancel full of monsters, but they didn't seem to do much good last time."
Jane frowns. "Monster neighborhood watch groups and guard patrols?"

<Hollyhock God> "I mean, just consider how many men I could get into your inner city before your fellas could even wrench themselves out of your coffins."

<Hollyhock God> Molly quotes some figures that makes it clear that she's uncomfortably familiar with the layout of your Chancel and your exact monster manpower.

<Pascale> I so need to start shrouding some of these things in secrecy….

<Hollyhock God> "Place is generally lacking in organization. A watch group is good. Being able to direct the entire effort mentally is better."

<Hollyhock God> you see even the NPCs are lecturing Holden about Treasure now

<Jane> "That sounds useful, but it's really taxing," Jane admits.

<Sid> "We've got Montezuma's Revenge, or whatever his name is. He could probably do something ghosty to protect the place."

<Pascale> "Toltecatl," Pascale corrects, offhandedly.

<Hollyhock God> "Not advisable," Molly responds off-handedly. Berserker. Unreliable."

<Hollyhock God> "Have yah tried pretending to be a dracula for a year? That's what I did. Not a dracula, I mean, but one of my own guys."

<Sid> Sid mentally adds "Jane" to the list of draculas in the chancel. It's a pretty big list!

<Jane> "The taste of blood puts me off. Also, I don't think they're going to give us a year to prepare."

<Sid> "Couldn't you just let one of the draculas bite you?"

Jane considers. "This may call for cheating."

<Sid> "Or werewolves, or ghouls, or whatever. Do Frankensteins bite?"

<Jane> "They do, it just doesn't do anything except hurt."

Jane considers the vampire proposal again. "Cooking in the sun seems like a really major downside for a learning experience." She remembers the trip to the North Pole not too long ago.

<Hollyhock God> "Well, if you don't wanna spend a year with the draculas in the mist, you could at least train 'em in military manuevers. Can't have too many rocket launchers."

<Hollyhock God> 'Speaking of, almost time for party games! I was thinking King of the Hill."

<Sid> "Uh oh."

<Hollyhock God> "Aw, don't be a big baby. You can take a rocket to the chest in the name of a good time."

<Pascale> Pascale may be sitting at the top of the hill already.

<Pascale> "I preemptoraly declare victory!"

<Pascale> "Next game?"

Jane offers up a smile. "Yay, games." Not quite the secret Excrucian-smiting insight she was hoping for. She wonders if there's an easier way to coordinate her monstes than dedicating half her concentration to actively controlling the things.

<Hollyhock God> The secret is to write paragraphs in between games about how awesome your Chancel is.

<Sid> "Pascale, don't piss off the lovely woman who baked us cookies and has a nuclear silo. It's rude."

<Pascale> (We can do that?)

<Pascale> "It's the point of the exercise, Sid."

<Hollyhock God> Then later when you get invaded you can bring up the existence of the booby-trapped chute leading into the shark tank and have it sound more realistic.

<Pascale> (But…. otherwise, it's a secret.)

Hollyhock God considers having Molly blow Pascale off the hill with a well-placed landmine, but that would have been a secret.

<Sid> "Sooo…when does the game start?" asks Sid. "Don'tsayrightnowdon'tsayrightnow—"

<Pascale> "You win with your heroic motif, I win with mine."

<Hollyhock God> "Anyway, the rules are simple as pie. Whoever controls the hill when everybody else has given up wins."

<Hollyhock God> "It can be you five versus… let's see, me, Canaan, Gracie, Isaiah, and Kip. I predict that will be the most fun, eh?"

<Jane> Wait, five?

<Sid> I think we're just three.

<Hollyhock God> Kip appears to be the late-arriving Summer, who strolled in just before pizza in shorts and sandals and not much else. He did not bring a surfboard but you can sense its presence… oh, right, there's only four tonight.

<Pascale> Pascale nods knowingly.

<Sid> Unless Parts and Sweets are here in spirit.

<Hollyhock God> And Parts is AFK forever!

<Jane> I think there's only three, I don't think Parts is actually here.

<Sid> He is, of course, the missing piece of our group.

<Hollyhock God> Fine, you guys versus Summer, Vegetables, and Strategy.

Hollyhock God picks basically at random.

<Hollyhock God> Molly offers you your choice of oversized weaponry.

<Pascale> "You know we're not all immune to bullets, right?"

<Jane> Jane, of course, goes with the oversized scythe, then leaps to the top of the hill next to Pascale in a single bound. (Aspect 4 for that kind of a jump? 2 AMP. I have plenty to burn.)

<Hollyhock God> "There's only one way to learn immunity to bullets—the hard way!"

<Pascale> "…. yeah. this is sooooooo totally the wise thing to do."

<Hollyhock God> "Agreed," says Paolo, elsewhere. He is used to being ignored.

<Jane> (which one was Veggies again?)

<Sid> Sid spies a vintage tommygun in the weapons pile, and takes it with a wicked grin. It's not him smiling, but the Bad Side of Town, the streets where crime and violence stalk like lean, feral dogs. And in this case, crime and violence have a face, and a name writ large in urban legend: Al Capone. Sid slips the gangster over himself like a suit, and slides a comfortable finger over the trigger of his machine gun.

<Sid> (Lesser Emulation)

<Jane> :D

<Hollyhock God> Vegetables is Isaiah, the tall guy with the monosyllables.

<Jane> righto

<Hollyhock God> What does wearing a gangster mean, anyway?

<Hollyhock God> What Affliction do you think that would result in?

<Sid> "I'm endowed with the criminal skills and persona of the legendary gangster Al Capone?"

<Pascale> Pascale establishes the existence of a secret weapon

<Jane> is Sid up here with us?

<Jane> 'cuz I'm about to raise up a haunted castle on top of the hill and he probably wants to be inside it when that happens.

<Pascale> Of the opposition, who's in their home chancel?

<Sid> Sid's going to stroll on up a bit more leisurely—oh, wait, better run up there quick.

<Hollyhock God> None of them actually.

<Sid> Aspect 2 super-jogging

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, I'm not sure that an Emulation of the Bad Side of Town actually gets you there.

<Sid> Would an Enchantment do it? I've got "shrouded in crime, violence, and urban legend" in the estate properties.

<Hollyhock God> A Lesser Emulation of Farms won't give you udders.

<Hollyhock God> Hm, you could definitely go from "shrouded in violence."

<Sid> Could I just assume a generalized shroud of ultra-violence that's vaguely Al Capone-shaped?

<Hollyhock God> Okay.

<Hollyhock God> Anyway, you take your places atop the hill.

<Hollyhock God> Any last words?

<Sid> "Let's get 'em, boys."

<Pascale> 'Boys?'

<Jane> "Boys?"

<Sid> "Ya know what I mean!"

<Jane> (Poor Sid)

<Jane> Jane claps her hands above her head, then easily catches her oversized scythe before it falls over and impales Sid. (yay Aspect 2) A big, spooky, haunted castle rises up atop the hill.

<Hollyhock God> Lesser or Greater?

<Jane> Lesser. It's just a castle on a hill, not like I'm shrouding the whole world in gothic masonry.

<Jane> oh wait

<Jane> before that

<Jane> Before doing so, Jane erupts in an aura of orange-black power, streaked with ghostly faces. (4 TMP to bring up Divine Mantle.)

<Hollyhock God> Oh, my, what a big… castle! (lightning)

<Sid> What're the other guys up to?

<Hollyhock God> Molly is summoning her army.

<Hollyhock God> Meanwhile, the pizza comes.

<Pascale> (OK, so, thematically, how all-in should we be going here?)

<Sid> (We should probably scale our efforts to theirs)

<Sid> (Killing anyone would probably be poor form)

<Jane> not a problem for me :D

Jane wanders up to a rampart, back-lit by lightning, and stares down at the massing army.

<Pascale> (Experience says otherwise!)

<Pascale> (But, in terms of resource expenditure, et al?

<Jane> "You know, that would be less intimidating, and also slightly less likely to shoot us, if it were an army of trick-or-treaters. Don't you think?"

<Sid> "S'long as they don't get no egg on my suit, I'll be fine."

<Pascale> (Gah. Keyboard keeps lagging for some reason)

<Sid> (Most of my combat stuff is in the 0mp range before strike, sooo)

<Jane> (Gonna wait for the HG to return with pizza before I start burning through PMP like a drunken sailor. I wants me some Destiny dammit.)

<Pascale> (And you figure this will help you get Struggle?)

<Hollyhock God> The army masses, little green men as far as your eyes can see.

<Jane> (shit if I know, this game's XP system is a baroque mystery to me)

<Jane> fds;hdsgh she summoned little green army men?

<Sid> hahaha

<Jane> that is awesome

<Pascale> (XP works like this: )

<Hollyhock God> They come to conquer the wicked lady of the castle, who rudely tries to beat the hostess at a party game.

<Pascale> (There is no XP.)

<Pascale> (But if you want to DO something, you state a goal, and you do it.)

<Jane> (I am trying to increase my facility with Persona miracles.)

<Sid> "Eat lead, Toy Story!" Capone!Sid washes the army men down with a lazy spray of machine gun fire from the ramparts.

<Pascale> (Right. I guess 'exhaust yourself trying Persona stuff' might be a trivial victory for that?)

<Hollyhock God> Meanwhile, the other Powers cluster around Kip, who lights up like the summer sun as he raises power.

<Hollyhock God> He could be putting up the Mantle himself.

Jane would normally summon up a counter-army of monsters, but today seems like a good time to try flexing a different set of muscles. She waves her scythe over the advancing legion, transforming them into an army of little green trick-or-treaters. (4 PMP)

<Hollyhock God> Okay, Jane raises the castle, Molly summons her army, Sid shoots things, Kip raises the mantle….

<Hollyhock God> Hold on, everybody, we need to go one at a time.

<Hollyhock God> Everybody declares an action, and I rule on what happens.

<Hollyhock God> Otherwise, chaos.

<Hollyhock God> Not the fun party chaos, confusing chaos.

<Hollyhock God> What's Pascale's action?

<Jane> I thought randomly shouting crazy shit over one another was half the fun of Nobilis!

<Pascale> Dunno yet.

<Pascale> I suppose I could quite mundanely hand out sweets to the trick-or-treeters before we are overwhelmed?

<Jane> Do we have any treats in the castle? Wouldn't having treats just encourage them to mob us?

<Hollyhock God> Technically they aren't trick-or-treaters until Jane's action resolves.

<Pascale> If we don't, they'll just trick us.

<Hollyhock God> Although if Jane says she created the castle with sweets she's probably right.

<Pascale> Can we please move on? Shouldn't we all be, you know, shouting actions? Declare a flurry or something?

<Sid> Sid's just going to shoot the army army men as a mundane action, with whatever benefits his Emulation gives him.

<Jane> well yeah the castle's probably stocked with Halloween stuff, including candy, decorations, and ghosts—it being haunted and all

<Hollyhock God> Sorry, am slow because yogurting.

<Jane> also being generally creepy since I can toss that on gratis with the lesser creation

<Hollyhock God> Shop has gotten busy

<Pascale> Pascale doesn't generally do things like pulling castles out of the ground, and making armies; she's more about running around scared and apparently overwhelmed, and then winning because she knows one crucial detail you don't.

<Jane> :D

<Pascale> Which is, of course, hard to do in an arbitrary contest to hold the highest point in the chancel.

<Sid> Divinations to figure out their secret plans?

<Pascale> Sure, why not?

<Hollyhock God> Okay, let's resolve, then.

<Hollyhock God> The army men become trick-or-treat army men with pumpkin buckets.

<Hollyhock God> Sid sprays them with gunfire.

<Hollyhock God> They catch the gunfire in their buckets and eat it. Was that something Isaiah did?

<Hollyhock God> Pascale determines that Molly's current plan is to melt your castle away in the heat of the summer sun and swarming you in her army mean.

<Jane> man, what kind of trick-or-treaters dig veggies?

<Sid> All of them, when it's candy corn.

<Jane> bastardry

<Jane> Is Pascale sharing the news? :o

<Pascale> "Uh, Jaaaaane….. how sun-proof is this castle?"

<Pascale> "You didn't make it out of, like, vampire, or anything, did you?"

<Jane> "No… well I guess it depends on how much sun we're talking about."

<Pascale> "You may want to get started on the preservation…."

<Pascale> "Molly?"

<Jane> "Yeah. You two hold 'em off for a few seconds."

<Pascale> Pascale sticks her head out the turret.

<Sid> (Do we get new actions now?)

<Pascale> "So as I understand it, what are the rules of this here contest?"

<Pascale> "Hold the highest point in the chancel when we say stop, or what?"
Jane raises her hands again, then pauses, waiting to hear Molly's answer with her ridiculously good Aspect 2 hearing.

<Hollyhock God> Okay, new turn.

<Hollyhock God> It's mostly until somebody decides it's not worth continuing.

<Hollyhock God> As a party game the rules are a bit vague.

<Jane> Okay then. We get to act again?

<Hollyhock God> Yeah, you can declare new actions.

<Jane> Cool. Going to be hard to melt the castle with no sun.

<Pascale> Yes, but that's not the point is it? I'm provoking a reply.

<Jane> (waits for answer)

<Hollyhock God> Fine, you get a text message: Hold the hill until the attackers surrender/decide to go inside for pie.

Hollyhock God doesn't know why he thinks texting is less silly than yelling.

Jane pushes the sun down over the horizon and brings up a bright, full moon inside the Chancel to replace it, veiling the sky with dark, spooky clouds at the same time. (4 DMP for a Diff 8 Greater Creation, Summoning or Animation)

<Hollyhock God> Okay, so you've spent 4 TMP and 4 DMP so far?

<Sid> Sid tosses away his machine gun, and with it, the legend-guise of Capone. Instead, he lays hands on the ramparts of the wall, getting a feel for the solid structure of it, working out the place-ness of it. With a little less effort than it takes to blink, he sends whorls of graffiti spreading from his fingertips, looping along the walls to form protective glyphs and spells of warding. (Lesser Enchantment to make the castle a place the army

<Sid> men shouldn't go, cranked up to level 5 for free)

<Jane> 2 AMP (for the big leap earlier), 4 DMP, 4 PMP (for the trick or treatsformations), and 4 TMP (for the Divine Mantle)

<Hollyhock God> Ah, okay. Pascale?

<Pascale> What?

<Pascale> I continue to hand out candy.

<Pascale> We hold the hill.

<Hollyhock God> Okay…

<Hollyhock God> Let me see.

<Hollyhock God> Molly commands her soldiers to advance, yelling "Push 'em off the hill!"

<Hollyhock God> Kip lights up like a second sun, beginning to approach a luminosity that hurts to look at.

<Hollyhock God> Isaiah attempts to turn the castle into a potato.
Hollyhock God considers how this resolves.

<Jane> is the castle's castle-ness protected by my Divine Mantle still?

<Pascale> Are you sustaining the miracle?

<Pascale> (in which case Sid it can be ignored by Persona)

<Pascale> Or is it now a perfectly normal castle?

<Jane> I think it's a perfectly normal haunted castle. Would that mean it's now a haunted, forbidden potato?

<Pascale> It's about to be a haunted, forbidden baked potato.

<Sid> Is it still a castle-sized potato, or does it shrink down?

<Jane> can I interject a Preservation to protect it?

<Pascale> As your action for the flurry, yeah.

<Jane> Would that interfere with my sky-veiling?

<Sid> I think so

<Pascale> Believe so. You'd have to ditch any MP spent on veiling the sky, but you could preserve the castle from both attacks, negating their actions.

<Jane> OK, I think I'm gonna do that then. Besides, making it spooky full moon night kinda harshes the summer party vibe anyway.

<Pascale> OK. What kind of preservation are you doing, lesser or greater?

<Pascale> Lesser is 1 MP, so miracle 5 + 4 for your Mantle for a total edge of 9

<Pascale> Will either of their miracles beat that?

<Jane> I'll just spent 2 DMP then on a sustained Greater Preservation to both sustain the castle's haunted-castle-ness and make the castle impregnable by means of being too spooky to approach (but a fun kind of spooky so as not to ruin the party with nightmarish terror).

<Jane> that means I'm down a full 6 DMP for the turn?

<Hollyhock God> Yes.

<Pascale> I *think* so. Rand can confirm. But I don't think Nobilis 3 *does* turns as such…. it's just a flurry. In a flurry, we can all change our actions and it all resolves at once. The catch being that the MP spent stay spent?

<Jane> Aspect: 2 (6/8 MP)

<Hollyhock God> But you can sustain it to protect against baking, so there's that.

<Jane> Domain: 4 (2/8 MP)

<Jane> Persona: 1 (4/8 MP)

<Jane> Treasure: 0 (4/8 MP)

<Jane> that is where I am now then lol

<Pascale> And potatoing.

<Hollyhock God> Okay, Jane abandons darkening the sky to protect the castle, which is not potatoed, but instead is forbidden.

<Jane> Diff 6 miracle + 4 Miraculous Edge means it's effectively a diff 10 miracle? Hm

<Jane> yeah man that castle is like double-forbidden now

<Sid> ain't nobody gettin' in

<Jane> also of note my MP stockpile is goddamn ridiculous.

<Hollyhock God> Molly's armies begin to move forward with their menacing buckets, but for the moment they're blocked by the walls.

<Hollyhock God> Kip's summery light threatens to melt the walls as yet, but Jane's halloweeny forbiddenance currently protects you up on the battlements from feeling it.

<Hollyhock God> Next actions?

<Sid> Hmm. This isn't working. Is "the sense of fun that the other side is getting out of this game" a valid target for enchantments?

<Pascale> Wait, what about Sid's mircale?

<Pascale> To make this a place thie other guys shouldn't go?

<Sid> Mine's just kinda stacked on top of the preservation, I guess. I think I'm going to abandon it.

<Pascale> Well it could kill off their army. But OK.

<Jane> How the hell strong is his light to be having an effect through my Greater Preservation? O_o

<Pascale> Your preservation didn't negate the sun, you just protect our castle.

<Hollyhock God> Yeah, it's still happening.

<Pascale> Where possible conflicting miracles stay 'true'

<Jane> yeah, from being melted like a candle

<Hollyhock God> He's sustaining.

<Jane> if it's melting, it's not really a castle

<Hollyhock God> It isn't melting.

<Pascale> Right. So he's *still trying* to melt it

<Hollyhock God> But it will if you drop your preservation.

<Pascale> But you're holding it up.

<Jane> ah

<Jane> so he's just kind of playing chicken with miracle sustainment, then

<Pascale> And running you out of actions; you can only do two things at cone.

<Pascale> once

<Sid> Rand, can I zap their fun with an Enchantment?

<Hollyhock God> Yes.

<Hollyhock God> Although the manners of that is questionable.

<Jane> Yeah, but by the same token, -he- can only do two things at once too.

<Pascale> Zap their desire to continue?

<Pascale> Jane: Yes.

<Sid> Yeah. Sid's manners never really were the best.

<Jane> (Also I think you'd be fighting my miracle if you went after the fun of the ones near the walls—the waves of terror this thing is throwing off are fun-terror, like a haunted house at an amusement park)

<Jane> (Halloween: All in good fun.)

<Hollyhock God> He really only needs to send the three Powers inside for pie.

<Sid> Sid takes a deep breath, and breathes the psychic equivalent of Los Angeles smog on a bad day over the battlefield, sooting up any fun that might be being had over there.

<Hollyhock God> It's the North Wind and the Sun strategy. Only in reverse.

<Jane> Meanwhile, I think I am going to do something about Kip

<Jane> leaving Pascale to handle any troubleshooting that may be necessary

<Pascale> Would it be more entertaining if I were more active?

<Jane> Lesser Creation + Lesser Preservation: Skeletal hands burst up from the ground beneath Kip and start dragging his shiny ass down into the earth with amazing strength. (Not sustaining this, so they'll just be regular dragging skeletal arms next turn)

<Pascale> Because I think we've got it covered for now.

<Jane> (Naw just continue being Pascale-ish)

<Jane> (it's just, you know, I'm fully tied up now, so if they start raining squash on us you're the only one who can do anything about it)

<Hollyhock God> Hm.

<Pascale> (Sure!)

<Hollyhock God> "Retreat!" cries Molly on her bullhorn. "Return to base for emergency pie!"

<Jane> (I'm assuming he's not bright enough to keep shining right through the ground)

<Hollyhock God> The army men begin a full march back to barracks, with your opponents in the lead.

<Jane> "Woo!" Jane releases her various miracles, presumably leaving Kip only dragged into the ground up to the knees or so, and holds one up for Sid.


<Pascale> Pascale enjoys some watermelon.

<Jane> ^5

<Sid> High five, celestial bros.

<Sid> Now let's go see what Canaan's up to.

<Pascale> "Man. Sid plays *to win*."

<Sid> "I was just saving Molly the embarrassment!"

<Jane> "Hey!" Jane frowns over the parapet. "Man, Sid, you just won us out of pie. But… I guess we maybe learned something about defense today."

<Sid> "Was it 'the best defense is Halloween?'"

<Hollyhock God> In the end, Molly saved you a slice of pie after all.

<Hollyhock God> It tastes like broccoli.

<Jane> d'auugghh

<Sid> We have been outwitted. ;_;

<Jane> Veggie revenge in the end :(

<Pascale> "Hey, uh…."

<Pascale> "Sorry I didn't seem too useful before, but… um…"

<Pascale> "Can I make it up to you with the pie I secreted earlier?

<Jane> Pascale = Team MVP

<Jane> I guess I should go see if Molly wants to keep the castle or if I ought to demolish it. Maybe a haunted castle would be useful for training maneuvers?

<Pascale> And Pascale produces The Good Stuff from a cooler hidden under her chair.

<Hollyhock God> Molly will buy the castle off you for six trays of baked goods.

<Pascale> Vegetarian, naturally.

<Hollyhock God> Hm, as conflicts go, that wasn't terrible.

<Sid> Sid is a creeper and goes to stalk Canaan some more, plate of pie in hand. It's not that there's a sexual attraction there—not mostly, at least. It's his Estate that finds him so interesting. Whatever glimpse of fragile, damaged beauty he saw in Canaan, the Bad Side of Town likes it.

<Hollyhock God> I think Holden's huge MP pool is turning out to be really good but not completely broken.

<Jane> Sold!

<Jane> I blew most of my DMP on a derp, but still had enough left to work with… I think the big thing is that my huge useless Treasure pool makes it really easy for me to wind up Divine Mantle whenever I want

<Pascale> Yeah. It's intentional.

<Hollyhock God> Meanwhile, Canaan proves possible to talk to when you can get a moment with him, but in general that interaction deserves more attention than I can spare right now.

<Hollyhock God> Speaking of what I can spare, can someone else put the log up tonight?

<Hollyhock God> I'm on the tablet.

<Pascale> "You believe those two?" Pascale grins at Canaan and Sid, turning to Paolo.

<Pascale> "… so why do you think Molly actually arranged all this?"

<Jane> god help us all if I ever manage to push Domain up to 5 and can dump all that into Divine Mantle, because I don't really see a situation where I ever turn that thing on at anything less than full power

<Sid> (I think I can get the log)

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