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[LP CYOA] 傳

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by treave, Aug 29, 2013.

  1. Kipeci Arcane

    Kipeci
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    Flopped to B.
     
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  2. Grimgravy Augur Patron

    Grimgravy
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    Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire
  3. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Going with Tigranes' idea, but retaining my skill choices, i.e. II,III, and A.
    And for the hell of it, can we participate as Kung Pa'o Qik'un? :troll:
     
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  4. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Codex 2012
    Kipeci - I, IV / B
    Smashing Axe - I, II / A
    ScubaV - II, IV / B
    TOME - I, III / B
    XenomorphII - II, III / A
    Zero Credibility - I, II / B
    Kashmir Slippers - I, IV / B
    Baltika9 - I, IV / B
    Azira - I, IV / B
    Jester - I, II / B
    Tigranes - I, IV / A
    Nevill - I, IV / A
    Bloodshifter - II, IV / A
    Ifeex - I, II / A
    Stygian Lurker - I, IV / B
    Esquilax - I, IV / A
    Grimgravy - II / B
    ERYFKRAD - II, III / A

    ***

    Current tally:

    I - 12
    II - 9
    III - 4
    IV - 10

    A - 8
    B - 10
     
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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 Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    You're counting me twice, treave. Please put II, III, A.
     
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  6. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    When do the votes close? I can flop to II from IV to help resolve the tie.
     
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  7. Tigranes Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    Tigranes
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    So close. :( Hoping ScubaV or someone checks in before votes close, I think all the good arguments have already been made for both sides.
     
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  8. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Codex 2012
    TOME's contingency flop will put II tied with IV. I'll check back in 2 or 3 hours and decide what to do then.
     
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  9. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    I'll be locking the second choice at B first to prepare the update while you guys figure out whether you prefer sleight-of-hand or drinking.
     
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  10. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Codex 2012
    Luoyang City

    Luoyang is one of the largest cities in the lands ruled by the great Tang, and has been a capital for the countless dynasties that preceded it. You had been here only once or twice before – along with Chang’an, Hangzhou and Yangzhou, it was one of the few cities that could boast of more than a million citizens living within and around its walls.

    You arrive by boat, travelling along the Grand Canal, the great project of the Sui Dynasty that linked Chang’an to Beijing in the northeast and also flowed down south, connecting to Yangzhou and Hangzhou. The city appears to be in a lively mood due to the upcoming tournament. Pugilists from all over the land throng the streets, publicly carrying weapons without fear. The city’s guard are an insignificant presence. They could not be counted upon to keep the peace; order was maintained by the mere word of the Eight Sects, such was their influence.

    And all this, in the second largest capital of the Empire.

    The classics had taught you that order was established by mandate from Heaven, and that the Emperor of the day was the only figure in the entire world that has received that mandate. Although the Eight Sects paid homage to His Imperial Majesty’s rule, you get the feeling that it may not be more than lip service. You begin to understand why Shun had been concerned about the pugilists. Though, to be fair, from your observations thus far the government has been rather ineffectual in establishing any semblance of order far from the cities – the central officials only cared if taxes were paid and grain was collected. At least the orthodox sects protected the communities close to them from bandits and other miscreants.

    You are not here today to write a political treatise, however.

    “Hello, dear innkeeper,” you bow slightly obsequiously. “Would you have a room available? I have been asking all along the street and it seems that I just haven’t had any luck.” Due to the tournament, every single inn in the city appears to be packed full of visitors. You had visited nearly twenty six establishments, and none of them had any room for you.

    “Sorry, son,” smiles the proprietor. “No luck for you here either. I don’t think you’ll be finding any rooms at this time of the month, not with the competition about to start.”

    You give him a polite nod and back out of the inn. If you had arrived earlier things could be different, but that unfortunate caravan accident had been a source of major delay. You just might have to spend the nights in some back street somewhere, where the vagrants and beggars slept. Alternatively you could look for cheaper lodgings near the brothels, where the uptight orthodox sects may be less keen to travel. As you head down the street, trying to keep an eye out for any inn around, you spot a group of young nuns coming towards you, dressed in the costume of Emei. The heavens just won’t give you a break.

    The preachy nun is with them. There is also another girl, with long hair unlike the nuns, looking as striking as her sister now that she’s been forced to clean up. And to think you had just parted ways two weeks ago.

    You dart into the nearest alley, almost tripping over a drunk beggar as you do so. With a quick word of apology, you wait within the shadows as Cao’er and Yifang pass by. Cao’er, at least, seems to be looking around for something - or someone – as her eyes keep darting around shyly as if hoping for some rendezvous of destiny. You did tell the Abbess that you might be here before you left the girl.

    You shrink back even more, knowing how good her eyesight is. Then, you hear someone behind you whisper in a sultry, low voice, “Master Xu.”

    You whip around instinctively, prepared to strike. How could you not have noticed her presence?

    A pretty girl dressed in a Miao outfit backs away with her hands put up, smiling sweetly. “Ah, I knew it was you. It has been a long time.”

    The heavens truly won’t give you a break. Running away from her would just make things worse.

    “Do I know you, miss?” You force a grin onto your face as you confront Chi Qilin yet again. Her hair is tied innocently into two braids this time around, doing nothing to offset her mischievous eyes.

    “Ah, that is how it is!” she giggles, her bracelets tinkling. “I’m sorry, I must have gotten the wrong person. I thought you were an old friend of mine. He was a rather memorable person.”

    “This old friend of yours must be a rather dashing fellow, if you are in the habit of sneaking up on him like a lover.”

    “Oh, he is dashing, all right. Probably dashed his head against the wall as a child.”

    “A blockhead like that would never in his life gain fellowship of an esteemed scholars’ institution. What a pity, don’t you think?”

    She laughs. “I agree. My old friend is definitely a blockhead. You do not appear to be one, so you cannot be him. So, how do I address you then, the one who seems to look like an old friend of mine, but is actually a stranger?”

    “I am Guan Shide, son of the merchant Guan Meng, recently come from Chang’an. It is a pleasure to meet you. How may I have the honour of addressing you?”

    “Oh, you may call me Mistress Chi, merchant’s son. I presume you are here to participate in the tournament?”

    “Perhaps. My father managed to procure an invite for me, and he thought it would do me some good to experience this event. What is your story, Mistress Chi?”

    “The same, actually. My father decided this would be a good test of my abilities since I disappointed him in a previous test,” she shrugs. “So, I’ve actually been following you from inn to inn for a while now. Having trouble finding a place to stay?”

    It seems that though you know a lot about hiding and sneaking in the wilderness, being able to detect someone tracking you in a crowded city is another matter. You will have to improve on that aspect starting from today – it would be good to take advantage of Luoyang’s crowdedness.

    “Yes, there does not seem to be many places left,” you reply.

    “Coincidentally, I have a spare room. My uncle was to come with me, but urgent matters of business dictated that he give this tournament a miss at the last minute. It is already paid for and the stupid innkeeper said he would take the room back but not refund it, so I decided to leave it as it is.”

    She smiles slyly. “You definitely wouldn’t be interested in that room, I’m sure.”

    “Of course. There is no such thing as a free lunch,” you say.

    “My family’s first motto is, ‘profit determines allies’. We don’t do anything for free, and everyone knows it. Money will do fine.” She peers at you. “You are a rich merchant’s son, are you not?” You have made some money on your way here from dispensing herbs and selling cheap medicines, so you were not exactly impoverished.

    “I would prefer searching on my own for a little while longer, Mistress Chi,” you say. You would like to stay away from her if you could. Who knows what manner of snakes she has hidden in the room as a pleasant surprise for you? Though truth be told, snake gall bladders have proven to be good for your inner strength, and you are running low on stock…

    “Suit yourself. I’m at the Tanxiang Inn. You’ll know where to find me,” she smiles.

    ***

    After your unfortunate encounter with Chi Qilin, you proceed to the red lantern district. While searching for a place to stay, you pass by a group of extremely confused and uncomfortable young Shaolin monks who seem to have wandered in and gotten lost in the maze of narrow streets and waving courtesans.

    A. You help them find a way out. Their predicament might be funny, but you are not without sympathy.

    B. You ignore them. You do not want to interact with anyone more than is necessary.

    ***

    In the end, even the cheap inns near the brothels are full. It looks like your options are between the street, or seeking out Chi Qilin.

    A. You stay in the street, bunking down with the homeless. You are sure to begin to stink, but you would prefer to tough it out on your own, and it still affords you some measure of anonymity. It should not be harsher than living in the jungle. On the downside, your attempted disguise as a merchant’s son would have to be changed to a wandering vagrant boy while hoping no one in the city recognizes you asking after inns. No son of a merchant would slum with the homeless.

    B. You rent the room from Chi Qilin. She definitely knows who you are, and it might be more pragmatic to work with her on this where you can keep an eye on her, rather than allow her to cook up tricks behind your back. She is no orthodox pugilist, that much you are sure from the way she does not declare her affiliation like any good orthodox disciple would do. Besides, you might be able to pick up some tips from her about sneaking around a city.
     
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  11. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    AB, Liable to flop to AA though.
     
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  12. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    AB.

    Lady Ji seemed to imply that there was some kind of fate that ties us and Qilin. I tend to believe her with these things. I can only hope that the said fate won't pit us against each other, though we might have missed the train to befriend the girl when we went with the Southern Maniac.

    We came anonimously to maximize our chances at interaction. So interact we will, making acquaintances among orthodox and unorthodox types alike.

    I an also concerned with how Qilin got her hands on the Emei outfit.
     
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  13. m4davis Scholar

    m4davis
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  14. Jester Arbiter

    Jester
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  15. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    Also known as, "trying to have your cake and eat it too."

    Let's not lose sight of the bigger picture here. We use our anonymous identity so that we can fly under the radar and figure out what flaws we can exploit among the students of the Eight Sects, both physical and psychological. We aren't as concerned with making unorthodox contacts, we're concerned with making orthodox contacts so that we can succeed in Zhang's challenge. Making friends is useful, but it's useful only insofar as it allows us to achieve victory. So if we're trying to acquaint ourselves with a few Shaolin types, living with Tulu Huodu's niece isn't the best way of going about it.

    Oh, and I would expect the price that Chi Qilin's father sets to be something more than simply money. His brother is one of the Five Greats, so I am fairly certain that this is a man who values knowledge more than he does gold. Chi Qilin was right there when we brazenly walked up to the Southern Maniac, and staying with her risks her discovering why we're hiding our identity.

    The obvious answer here is AA. Make a few Shaolin contacts, ignore the unorthodox world for the brief time that we're here. Don't try to do a million things at once, and don't accept a free lunch.
     
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  16. Smashing Axe Arcane Patron

    Smashing Axe
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    Divinity: Original Sin
  17. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    Bandwagoning rears its ugly head. We're here to infiltrate the orthodox sects, Chil Qilin isn't our concern. Plus, there are some perks to being a street rat:

    We've just had a couple of close encounters right now. Knowing the streets means we know what places to avoid so we don't end up running into someone who knows our face.

    This way, we're also more likely to come in contact with a Beggar or two. This is important: the beggars aren't competing, but they are placing bets on the fighters in the tournament. If there's anybody who can give a decent "who's who" of potential champions, it's them. Fuck the offer to stay at the inn, we'll get a lot more from the streets.
     
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  18. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    If that doen't satisfy the definition of interaction with the unorthodox world, I don't know what does.

    In any case, ignoring the invitation would be unwise.

    Edit: Ouch. You have changed the vote. Forget what I said then.
     
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  19. ERYFKRAD Barbarian Patron

    ERYFKRAD
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    Serpent in the Staglands Shadorwun: Hong Kong Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire Pathfinder: Kingmaker
    Esquilax, think going street might affect our "cover" and such? That's what concerns me about AA now.
     
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  20. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    Making friends is nice, but there is also such a thing as avoiding making enemies. Now that Chi Qilin knows our identity and knows that we are hiding it for some reason, why don't we try and understand what she wants from us, so that she doesn't blow our cover later, be it on purpose or not?

    She is one of the few who definitely knows we are the apprentice of the Maniac. That information might hurt us, badly, since we decided to go about our business in secrecy. If she doesn't mean us harm, let's take her offer. If she does, let's keep her close and try to guess what her game is.

    Funny you should mention that.
    So... how does living with the Emei nun sound, then? Because that is how Qilin disguises herself.
     
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  21. Zero Credibility Arcane

    Zero Credibility
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    Going with AB.

    1A because why not make some friends in the orthodox world? That is one of the reasons we are here for.

    2B because I feel that living on the streets would jeopardize our cover story to an unacceptable degree. Our current cover story is solid, and the girl already knows who we are anyway. Sure, she might be planing something, but she can blow our cover just as easily whether we are staying on the streets or in the inn.
     
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  22. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    Yes, changing our story on the fly has its problems. We've run through dozens of inns using our "merchant boy" cover story, so if we decide to walk into an inn with a few friends of ours for a quick drink, the innkeeper might notice that we look very familiar. Besides, there are plenty of ways that we can try to hide it: Jing is clever enough to think on his feet, plus excuses are a lot easier to come by in a situation like this than they would be if we accept Chi Qilin's offer. "Sorry guys, I walked in there once and the innkeeper accused me of stealing. They just don't let street kids in the inns around here."

    One thing that we can take advantage of is the fact that the Shaolin monks have been living in a monastery most of their lives, so they're probably somewhat gullible. However, trying to make various excuses while living with Chi Qilin is going to be a lot harder to maintain.

    My problem is that I think the double life in which we are living under Tulu Huodu's roof while trying to make friends with Shaolin monks is more difficult to reconcile than the double life where we're a charming street rat who tries to avoid inns.

    Surely Jing can rebuff Chi Qilin's offer diplomatically. She respected his courage in approaching the Southern Maniac and he did help her at Luoying Manor when she asked him to come with her on that little mission, so they're at least on somewhat good terms. Turning her down shouldn't be too much trouble.

    Like I said, I just think that trying to infiltrate orthodox sects while living with Chi Qilin is a recipe for trouble.
     
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  23. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    Surely he can turn her down. Then we lose sight of one person who can blow our cover with a single word. We don't know what her goals are, and whether they can be reconsiled with ours. It would be a pity if we unwittingly would end up in her way, alienating her (which I would have wanted to avoid at all costs even if she couldn't harm us) and ending our legend prematurely.

    Well, you are a merchant. You've found out that the room was empty and the owner isn't coming back any time soon, so you have bought off the innkeeper. The only one who can call you out on it is Qilin herself, and if she is willing to do so, you have bigger worries on your mind.
     
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  24. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    I think you may have misread it. I checked to see, and we ran into Chi Qilin after avoiding the nuns:

    She's dressed in Miao clothing, not as a nun.

    First off, we're here to win by next year. I think that making friends among the orthodox sects is our ticket to winning, which is why I'm voting for it, but I'm not placing friends and contacts above the big picture.

    The girl knows who we are, but she doesn't really know why we're coming in under an assumed name. Yes, she saw us talking to the Maniac, but I'm quite certain she doesn't know that Xu Jing is Master Zhang's apprentice. It's important to remember that while she did see us conversing with him, she isn't a fellow of the Manor and so she doesn't know what we've been up to since we became a fellow. treave, Jing isn't aware that we're Zhang's apprentice, correct? I don't see why this would be something that she would know.
     
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  25. Zero Credibility Arcane

    Zero Credibility
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    She could have learned it easily enough from Yao or (more probably) Cao'er. She does seems to have some contact with them, and I could see here coming to them to ask about our abrupt disappearance.
     
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