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Vapourware [LP CYOA] Night of the Hummingbird

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by treave, Feb 5, 2017.

  1. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Codex 2012
    Night of the Hummingbird

    Ankida. The greatest and oldest city on the continent, the center of the once burgeoning Shinar Empire. Many have dubbed the Empire the Sick Man of the Old World and dismissed it as a failing government clinging onto outdated monarchy through sheer pride, nostalgia and no little stubbornness. Still, even with the Empire’s strength sapped by years of war and the changing winds of history, the brilliance of Ankida itself remains undiminished. It is still a metropolis that many poets have titled the Jewel of the World in countless poems and songs. It is, still, the cradle of minds and egos that have gone on to do great things, as it has been for millennia. No matter how many Emperors have ruled it, no matter the philosophies of the land it stands on, no matter how many young, upstart nations stake their claim to importance, Ankida is still the pivot on which the world turns.

    And on this night, in the mansion of the most influential noble of the Empire, amidst the howling gales of republicanism that are storming the continent, the world is about to revolve once more around this ancient city…

    Tonight would go down in history as the Night of the Hummingbird.

    For as an old Shinari verse goes, the hummingbird drinks nectar by day, and blood by night.

    ***

    Table of Contents:

    Chapter 1: Inanna Lumen
    Honey and Chocolate Biscuit Rolls
    A Small Disturbance
    A Chance Encounter
    Who Watches the Fire
    Ending 1: The Coup of 3470 A.C.
     
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2017
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  2. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Character Selection I:

    A. Lady Orlessa Ramsesphilios (52) - Spouse of Lord Ramsesphilios. Noted philanthropist, social butterfly and avid gardener. Her reach amongst the ladies of high society is said to rival that of her husband’s own amongst the Council of Nobles. Organizer of tonight’s banquet.

    B. Natia Ramsesphilios (18) – Sole daughter of House Ramsesphilios. A young woman who knows her family’s influence and is not afraid to use it. Tonight’s banquet serves as her debut into high society.

    C. Vitruvius Camna (23) - Scion of House Camna, a militaristic family of nobles that has seen better days. Having recently graduated summa cum laude from the Imperial Academy, he is keen to prove his worth. He has become famous as one of the advocates against the spread of republicanism in the Empire.

    D. Ambassador Zhang (46) - The Higashi ambassador. Descended from a long line of Concordiat diplomats and fluent in seven languages, he has been stationed in Ankida for more than a decade. His tenure has gained him many allies amongst the Ankidans due to his gregarious nature.

    E. Eannos Lumen (23) - A manservant of the Ramsesphilios family. Inanna’s brother. Was once a cadet in the Imperial Academy’s military wing, but dropped out due to personal circumstances. A brooding young man that still maintains contact with certain more radical elements of the military.

    F. Inanna Lumen (18) - A maid of the Ramsesphilios family. Eannos’s younger sister. Unaware of her brother’s activities. A kind and gentle girl that is the apple of Lady Orlessa’s eye, even above her own daughter.

    G. Wulfric Wendelltyr (25) - A young inventor from the Skane Republic. Under patronage from Lady Orlessa, he has taken up residence in Ankida. Invited by his patron to demonstrate his recent invention: a steam-powered stage play. His neuroticism and nervousness makes him a poor fit for a banquet, however.

    H. Nameless (20s?) - A young man with neither clothes nor memory to his belonging. He finds himself sitting on the walls of the mansion grounds with no idea whatsoever as to how he got there.

    ***

    Each character can only be selected once, and their chapters constitute a self-contained arc regarding the events of one night. The sequence of character selection may affect the plot.
     
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  3. Kipeci Magister

    Kipeci
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    Alright, great! I think that what I said in the other topic still ought to stand, so I'll just quote myself there.

    D is therefore my vote. Wondering if he has a distant connection to any other Zhang we've known... I've forgotten if China got eaten by the Gieloth before or after the Tang dynasty in this, so I have some reading to do.
     
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  4. Absinthe Erudite

    Absinthe
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    I think the question is what kind of endgame we're pursuing. Here are the ideas I can think of: imperialist, republican, theocrat?, anarchist (should probably pick Eannos then Inanna? or maybe Zhang if we want to try this), and fiddling while ankida burns (burn it all).
     
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  5. Azira Arcane Patron

    Azira
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    D
     
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  6. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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  7. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    Awesome! These are all interesting characters and the mystery of H is appealing, but I'm kinda looking for something a bit different.

    I definitely don't want to play another brainiac, I'm getting kind of sick of academic type characters that we've seen a lot of in other CYOA's lately.

    For some reason, Inanna intrigues me. She's completely in the dark, naive, and totally harmless, but she has a powerful ally in the Lady of the house and likely a very dangerous and jealous enemy in the Lady's daughter, who's also a hell of a lot savvier. Plus, we have the novelty of treave writing as a womyn for the first time.

    Let's go as Cinderella for this banquet.

    F
     
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  8. Grimgravy Augur Patron

    Grimgravy
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    Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire
    F>D These seem the good starting points to get information we can use in the later chapters. We should definitely do Lady Orlessa Ramsesphilios after Wulfric Wendelltyr. Her frantically flailing around after he blows up her party sounds delicious.
     
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  9. Storyfag Arcane

    Storyfag
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    D
     
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  10. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

    The Brazilian Slaughter
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    C


    Vitrivius Camna is where it is. Fight republicanism, prove our worth. Let's also go for getting a cute lady, some wine and a lot of food to bring home for later.
     
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  11. hello friend Arcane

    hello friend
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    I'm on an actual spaceship. No joke.
    F
     
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  12. oscar Tacticular Staff

    oscar
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    E. Time to go revolutionary on these bitches.
     
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  13. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    There's two ways I'm considering of carrying this CYOA out, and one is more meta-gamey than the other. Regardless of which I ultimately decide on, I'll arrange things so that the first character choice won't lock you guys down into anything. There'll be plenty of options to influence the ending afterwards.

    Current tally:

    A - 0
    B - 0
    C - 1
    D - 4
    E - 1
    F - 3
    H - 1

    I'll close the votes in about 12 hours and proceed to update then.
     
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  14. lightbane Arcane

    lightbane
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    Treave is back!

    F.

    Let's see how (poorly) can the Codex play as a womyn.
     
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  15. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    Alright. Let's give it a try.

    F.

    Though her brother would be interesting too.
     
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  16. Nahel Arcane

    Nahel
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    This. C is the way to go.
     
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  17. MoistCloister Savant

    MoistCloister
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  18. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Fine, flopping to F to feed the lamb to the wolves first.
     
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  19. Kipeci Magister

    Kipeci
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    I kind of wish we had a better idea of what was going on so that we could panic more about her cheerfully approaching murderers while it happens, but sharing her happy ignorance won't be so bad, either.
     
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  20. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    F it is, then.
     
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  21. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Honey and Chocolate Biscuit Rolls

    The low roar of conversation was audible from the other side of the panelled doors that led to the banquet hall. Inanna Lumen took a deep breath as she pushed them open – gently and slowly, to avoid drawing any attention to her – and entered.

    Inside, the noise grew. Mixed in with the talk of men and women dressed in fineries were the strains of music from the small stage. She glanced up at where the musicians were, and at the strange mechanical contraption behind them. It had been covered with a large piece of white cloth so she could not make out any details, but she had seen the manservants assisting in transporting it onto the stage just this morning. A strange man, hair wild and clothes slightly askew, had been instructing them in a strange, loud whisper.

    Well, that was not any of her concern at the moment. Keeping her back straight, like a proper servant of House Ramsesphilios should, Inanna made her way along the sides of the wall, carefully skirting away from too much contact with the guests. It was a practiced movement of servitude, one the nobles of Ankida were coached not to notice from their formative years, and she had become fairly proficient at it over the past five years.

    As she moved along, she caught snippets of conversation; mostly gossip about the latest scandals and the state of the country and the state of the continent, and she paid them no mind. It was not her job to be concerned with this. Her brother had always told her that ignorance was safety, that if she knew nothing, no one would think anything of her.

    “A rude thing to say”, she had thought at the time. As a child she would have rejected the notion entirely, captivated as she was by the stories of the Octopus Witch that at times fought the Founding Emperor and yet at other times was his ally, and her childish dreams to become such a hero.

    But as she grew, and life made its nature known, she came to understand her own status. She was not even going to be some influential nobleman’s wife, let alone a powerful sorceress. She was a maid and the most she would ever experience with regards to flirtations with the nobility were forceful propositions for dalliances. Not that she had accepted any, nor had she had to reject any for a few years now. Lady Orlessa Ramsesphilios was quite well-regarded within both her social circles and that of her husband’s, and that meant that when Inanna’s position as a favoured servant was made known, such propositions ceased.

    Of course, that came with other troubles in itself, but…

    Her feet stopped, and she curtseyed to a middle-aged woman dressed in a blue and white frock, the official colours of the House. Her hair was tied in a bun and she seemed stern, like a schoolmistress would be. The woman looked at her with a slight, downward curl of the lip.

    “You are late,” came the reproachful greeting.

    Inanna apologized. “I’m sorry, Head Maid. I had a brief relapse.” Her constitution was not the most remarkable of things, and from time to time she would get a shortness of breath. It was something that she was born with, and no amount of medical attention had ever managed to cure it.

    The head maid sighed. “Well, you have never had the most convenient timing with those. No matter. It’s time to get to work. With Maltissa and Rupert on sick leave, we are short on hands for this banquet. Help Lucia in bringing around the appetizers. Did you hear that, Lucia— Oh, for Ean’s sake, Lucia, stop flirting with the guard!”

    The head maid kept her voice controlled and low even when berating the maid that had been chatting happily with a young guard by the window. Still, it was enough to get the other girl to stop, and she whispered something in the guard’s ear before primly walking back to Inanna and the head maid.

    “Aye, mam,” she bowed, offering no justifications for her dereliction of duty. She winked at Inanna and smiled, while the head maid grumbled about problem children and suitable punishments. Inanna smiled back wanly. She was used to this scene, and similarly, Lucia too must have been used to whatever may come. A bright girl from Etruria about Inanna’s own age, she was an existence that Inanna could only compare to the wind. Free, uncontrollable, uncatchable. It seems that Lucia hailed from a family of merchants that House Ramsesphilios owed a favour to, and so she had been sent here for education in both knowledge and manners, though the latter does not seem to be working out as her parents wished. Still, her background meant that the head maid would not be able to kick Lucia out of the house even if she wanted to.

    Energetically, Lucia took up two plates of appetizers from the banquet table – one had lightly fried prawns, and the other thin chocolate biscuit rolls drizzled with honey. She made a show of looking at one plate, then the other, before finally shoving the plate of biscuits at Inanna.

    “This one should suit you better,” grinned Lucia.

    “I… don’t get it,” mumbled Inanna in return, although she did take the plate offered.

    “Well, it’s— “

    A short, sharp cough from the head maid interrupted them. The meaning was clear – get to work.

    Giggling, Lucia headed out into the center of the hall, navigating the crowd with practiced ease. Inanna took a couple of deep breaths again, and looked around. First, she would head for…

    ***

    A. A dashing young man, dressed in military uniform. She recognized him as one of her brother’s classmates from his Academy days – Vitruvius Camna. They had not seen each other for a year or so now, but she had always found him pleasant to speak to. He was surrounded by a mix of highborn young men and women.

    B. Lord and Lady Ramsesphilios, who were surrounded by no small number of guests and still successfully holding court. There seem to be some really important people with them – Inanna did not know who they were, but from their clothes and the way others treated them, they were clearly more important than the usual guests the mansion had.

    C. A bearded giant of a man, gulping down alcohol unceasingly. His black hair and features marked him as being from the East, and Inanna vaguely remembered him as a diplomat of some sort. He was boisterously talking to some people in military uniform.

    D. A slim young man with an eye-patch, who appeared to hail from the same lands as the Eastern diplomat. He was quietly moving from table to table, seemingly concerned only with eating as much of the food as possible.

    E. The strange young man she had seen yesterday, hunched in a corner of the hall all by himself and polishing his glasses. He did not seem comfortable with the banquet, and Inanna could slightly empathize with him.
     
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  22. Lambchop19 Arcane Zionist Agent Literally Hitler Batshit Crazy

    Lambchop19
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  23. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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