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Journey to the Centre of Arcanum - CYOA

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by ironyuri, Oct 18, 2012.

  1. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    :hearnoevil:
     
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  2. snoek Augur

    snoek
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    Where's the weekend update you promised? :angrily shakes fist: [​IMG]
     
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  3. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    :necro:
     
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  4. Gondolin Arcane

    Gondolin
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    :mob:
     
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  5. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    :rage:
     
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  6. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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  7. ironyuri Guest

    ironyuri
    Chapter the First
    In which Elias Kleinmann is confronted with the reality of his situation.

    Part II.


    The storm rages unabated outside the cave. The Professor stands and holds aloft his crank flashlight, illuminating the cave into which you’ve all stumbled. “Are all of you quite alright? None the worse for wear, I hope?” He offers you a hand up, accepting it and coming to your feet, Brockenlid pats you on the shoulder (crouching awkwardly to do so), “How’s that for a maelstrom, eh Major Kleinmann? What do you think? Shall we explore further into this cavern or see out the storm and relocate here with the others when conditions are more favourable?”

    Soaked to the skin, with fat droplets still falling from your moustache, you are quite unsure what answer to give the Professor. Fishing a hip flask of brandy from your suede jacket, you take a swig which warms you. You are about to replace it in your pocket, when you remember the presence of the others, and reticent to do so, offer it to Brockenlid. Feeling energised by the burning sensation in your gut, you muster a response, “Well, Professor, I believe we should see out the storm here. It’s dry, if not the most comfortable location. In my considered regimental opinion, I do not believe we could safely navigate back to the camp in the darkness, light or no.”

    Miss Cochrane, wringing her skirts dry, chimes in, “I’m perfectly happy to sit here Professor Brockenlid! That storm was absolutely dreadful. Why don’t we get a fire going and dry off?”
    “Indeed,” Brockenlid mumbles benevolently, “you are quite right, however, we have not the materials for a fire. We must either disrobe thereby allowing our things to dry naturally, or suffer the unpleasantness with stoicism. I’m afraid I must opt for the latter in this case, Miss Cochrane.”


    Miss Cochrane balks at the thought, but nods her acceptance of the situation with a look of dismay.
    “Perhaps, Major Kleinmann, we might, as you would say in the regiment, ‘reconnoitre’ our immediate surroundings? I suggest we explore deeper into this passage, if for no other reason than to escape the abominable draft.”
    “As you wish, Brockenlid. I do, however, believe we should not stray too far from the opening of the cavern, or we may never find our way back out!”


    Yourself, the Professor, and your three companions set forth into the shadows that gather in the depths of the cavern. An’ar and Henderson give the hand-cranks of their flashlights a few good turns and soon the journey becomes much less hazardous. After some time, it is no longer possible to hear the thunder or the howling wind, and the passage seems to taper inwards. At intervals, An’ar or the Professor call a halt, and draw together in conference, An’ar discussing the geological characteristics of the tunnels with the Professor in excited tones. Miss Cochrane scribbles notes into a small pocketbook, which seems miraculously to have survived the drenching. Henderson, the accompanying private, drags his feet at the rear, looking fearful when not bored.
    “Regimental step, Henderson!” You snap, a futile attempt to remind him of his place and duty to the uniform.


    The narrowing passageway soon comes to a sudden end. Brockenlid and An’ar huddle together, investigating the scarred rockface. You crane your neck to see what it is they are so concerned with. The Professor becomes excited, his voice taking on a tone you’ve not heard before.
    “This is it, Ranulph! See these markings here,” He indicates what appear to be runic notches carved into the rockface, where it appears to have been fused together, “we’ve found it, I know it! Nothing other than a magickal force of enormous power could have fused this passage shut. The Mysterium Orbis itself purported to be the work of a long lost geomancer...” Brockenlid trails off, staring at the runic markings.


    An’ar, after some time, ventures his opinion, “Professor Brockenlid, I cannot, unfortunately, speak with confidence on this matter. I did not have the benefit of studying that tome as you did, however, I may be able to test your theory, sir.” He addresses all present now, ushering you all to stand back: “I propose to cast a magickal dispersal cantrip, if I have correctly determined the nature of this magickal seal, we shall gain access to this passage.”
    An’ar begins to mumble under his breath, making arcane motions with his hands just above the markings on the rock face. Standing well back, next to the Professor, you lean in and quietly remind him, “Brockenlid, we cannot make any descent without your equipment or our supplies, it would be better if we marked the passage somehow and returned to the camp as soon as...” You are cut short by a great flash of light and a thunderous crack which knocks you and the others to the floor.


    The unconscious body of An’ar lies several feet from the fused fissure in the rock, smoke trailing from his jacket. The Professor’s lips are moving, but whatever he is saying is drowned out by the ringing in your ears. Staggering to your feet, you motion to the mortified Henderson, who merely looks on in horror. Your diminutive size prevents you from assisting in carrying An’ar out, and thus it is the Professor and Ms. Cochrane who take his arms over their shoulders and hoist him up. You grab Henderson by the scruff of his collar and slap him across the face, bringing him to his senses.
    An’ar’s head lolls from side to side, and occasionally he emits a barely audible groan. Returning to the camp is the only option at the moment.

    *************
    [​IMG]
    The fury of the heavens has long since passed, but its damage is undeniable. As you reach the camp, you find a haggard Simeon Maug. He is bruised and grazed, his suede military coat ripped in several places. Pvt. Jenks is missing and Langfield sits, dejected, by the drenched ashes of a firepit. An’ar is placed on a cot inside the battered tent. To your horror, and that of the Professor and Ms. Cochrane, Maug explains the true extent of the storm’s wrath.
    “It were a terrible sight, Professor. Nothin’ we could do to help those poor souls. When that gale came in, the ship were still anchored just past the reefs—she listed to the side, dragging her anchor with her and crashed up against the rocks. We’ve been fishin’ out their bodies all morning. Jenks,” He grimaces, and spits in the fire pit, “poor bastard didn’t have a chance. He slipped as he was tryin’ to pull a survivor to shore, they both went under only to be spewed back out by a devilish wave, dashed against the rocks.”


    [​IMG]
    You slump to the ground, pulling out your hip flask and taking another long swig. There is now no return from this foul island, and any fleeting thought of a swift, glorious return to Tarant is now lost. It will be weeks before they get another ship out, if they can find a captain willing to brave the journey.

    The rest of the day is spent salvaging what supplies and equipment can be salvaged from crates smashed, or drenched by the storm. Langfield is distraught that much of the electrical equipment he had brought along is now little more than worthless scrap. The bodies that do wash ashore are brought to the plateau and burned, any identification that might be recovered, is noted that their next of kin might one day be informed. In a sombre mood, the party sets off back toward the cave just before dusk, Maug and Henderson carrying the still unconscious An’ar on a make-shift stretcher. You and Langfield have to take up the slack and act as pack-mules, carrying the bulk of equipment. You balk at the loss of dignity, but dare not make too great a deal of it given current circumstances.
    *************
    1ère Brumaire.

    Some four days have passed since the party made land on the island. An’ar has begun to recover from the magickal anomaly which left him unconscious, though at times his mind still seems to be addled. The cave has become the base of operations from which the Professor has undertaken a survey of the island, during which time, you and Ms. Cochrane have been his regular companions. As yet, he has found no other system of caverns, and no sign of any other runes. With time drawing on, and the possible threat of a rival expedition pressing him to action, the Professor finally comes to a decision, of which he informs you, as commander of the military attaché.
    “Major Kleinmann, this expedition cannot be delayed any longer. My dear collegue, An’ar, is now on the mend, but each day we postpone our rivals draw nearer and our supplies grow thinner. We must press on now, as we have little possibility of returning home. I propose, against my better judgement in this matter, to use a technological solution to a magickal problem—dynamite! Mr. Langfield has agreed to prepare a charge capable of opening a new fissure into the rock wall, without sufficient power to cause a complete collapse. As we speak, he is undertaking this task, once ready, we shall set off. I advise you to make ready what equipment you believe will be required.”
    “Brockenlid, I protest the notion of battering through the earth with explosives. While we may not be in a position to depart this accursed island, I do not wish to be buried upon it just yet!”
    “My dear Herr Kleinmann, I have inspected the geological structure of the passage myself and with Langfield’s knowledge of explosives we have devised a charge small enough to break down the magickally sealed barrier, leaving the passage intact. You must trust me, sir. Before we set off, you should inform the others of the plan and make ready whatever equipment you will have immediate need of. I feel we should station your man Henderson here, should a rescue party come for us, and in order to maintain the camp.”


    Unable to come up with further objections to the Professor’s plan, you can only nod your assent. You brief Maug and the remaining private, but are unable to find the whereabouts of Ms. Cochrane.

    DO YOU:
    1)Forget about Ms. Cochrane. You have to put your belongings in order. Organising your equipment, ammunition and provisions to maximum efficiency will make for a more comfortable descent.
    2)Track down the blasted woman! Where the hell could she have gotten off to anyway? She’s trekked across the island more than once already and at this time of day she rarely leaves her tent while she scribbles some sort of diary of the journey.
    3)Order Maug to track Ms. Cochrane down. That should give you time to put your affairs in order, and, while he’s gone, you might even get a chance to rummage through their own trunks. Who knows what you might find?



    Alternative (clichéd) soundtrack, if you find my main man Rachmaninov dull:

     
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  8. Gondolin Arcane

    Gondolin
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    Ah, so nagging you actually works. That's good to know. :smug:

    A tentative vote for 3.
     
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  9. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    I say 2.
    Maug is a damn good shot, and we have the other private.
    However, ours as a leader is the burden of responsibility.
    And we can't risk angering the others too much yet, as we may come to rely upon them yet.
     
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  10. Tigranes Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Tigranes
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    Serpent in the Staglands Torment: Tides of Numenera
    Only a buffoon of the first order would find Rachmaninov dull, sir.

    2 for now as I can't see as missing out on too much goings-on at the camp, and we should show some leadership in times of duress, before Kleinmann acts the fool even more when the dynamite goes horribly wrong.
     
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  11. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    I'm so incredibly happy this was updated!
     
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  12. Monty Arcane

    Monty
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    Very pleasantly surprised to see an update.

    We can't just ignore the fact that she's missing, who knows what she's up to. Perhaps the rival party has even arrived or she's leaving a message for them.

    Was thinking of 3 but if she is up to some nefarious activity then if Maug discovers it it potentially makes her beholden to him. The less power he gathers the better.

    So: 2
     
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  13. Stygian Lurker Scholar

    Stygian Lurker
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  14. oscar Tacticular Staff

    oscar
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    2, though getting our supplies in order sounds good as well.

    3
     
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  15. Kashmir Slippers Augur

    Kashmir Slippers
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    2. We are bound to show our true colors to the group eventually, so we might as well try to win as much favor now when it is easy.

    Also, I am really happy that this is updating again!
     
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  16. tuluse Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    tuluse
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    Serpent in the Staglands Divinity: Original Sin Project: Eternity Torment: Tides of Numenera Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    We must show leadership? Of course we must, we are an office after all. Showing leadership doesn't mean trapezing all across tarnation looking for every little girl that gets lost. One must keep their head. Carefully plan and think of the entire group. Maug, feebleminded though he is, is surely capable of finding one woman on this island. Leave the tasks that take high native intelligence to those who posses it.

    3.
     
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  17. Rumsfeld Scholar

    Rumsfeld
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    Good to see Ironyuri has returned from sabbatical.

    2
     
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  18. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    2, I say. Should be in our best interests not to put Ms. Cochrane and that bloody brute together.

    Also,
    :yeah:
     
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  19. Kalin Arcane Zionist Agent

    Kalin
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    Hear, hear!
     
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  20. Zorba the Hutt Arcane Weasel

    Zorba the Hutt
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    2, hunt the slag down.
     
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  21. the grim one Novice

    the grim one
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  22. Bohr Arcane

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  23. Major_Blackhart Codexia Lord Sodom Patron

    Major_Blackhart
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    UPDATEN!
     
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  24. Jester Arbiter

    Jester
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