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[LP CYOA] Epic

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by treave, Jun 23, 2012.

  1. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    I pretty much agree with Baltika9 completely. The blade is sentient and it takes control of its wielder when unsheathed. It's probably fair to speculate that Ean would be the only one able to handle it with a good degree of control. I am banking on Dio's sheer ballsiness and flair for improvisation being able to pull us through.*

    As for theories regarding Fenrir's words, this all goes back to the madman:

    It has been the madman's goal since Day 1 to tear down the Empire. Fenrir has told us that he already knew the truth of everything before he even developed his powers. Then he told us that the first batch of Watchers to volunteer for surgery to "become Ean" went insane. When you combine this with the fact that the madman knew about everything related to Ean even before developing his powers, this strongly indicates that he was one of those Watchers that were the first to volunteer. This would explain both his insanity and his indepth knowledge about what's really going on.

    But what has he planned? I believe that the madman anticipated and was prepared for both Ban returning the sword to the Empire and for a slaughter at Euphraxes. I think he tried to engineer some sort of massive rampage with the aid of the sword so that he could take the mantle of Ean, though I am not sure how. In any case, for whatever reason, telling Ban how to awaken the blade serves the madman's interests. Any ideas, guys - Storyfag Tigranes, maybe? He is counting on Ban to go on a massive rampage, which is why we should not let him do it.

    As for the madman himself, he's long gone: I think that after showing Ban how to awaken the blade, he's headed off to Iceland. This dude here:

    I'm almost certain now that this was either a decoy or a nobody. The madman got the fuck out of dodge after "awakening" Anbar-Shi. In any case, I believe that awakening the sword is crucial to his plans of usurping Ean's body.

    * I wasn't a big fan of Dio at first, particularly after Thania's death, but he has really grown on me. The dude is every bit as courageous as Ean, if not more so - the man has no skill in battle yet he's willing to go toe-to-toe against forces much more powerful than he is.

    B
     
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  2. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Exactly. And if we, by some miracle, finish this chapter the way we want to finish it (getting back the pure Ean), I propose that we save Dio's genetic material to later make a Space Marine legion out of him.

    :rpgcodex: Like we should have done with Gudersu.

    Edit: although, being a complete villain was rather fun, in it's own way, and I would have carried on with it, were it not for the fact that we've more important shit to do as Ean.
     
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  3. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Codex 2012
    Chapter 7.22: The Cursed Sword

    Grabbing a musket from a fallen soldier, you kneel and take aim. You had been trained – briefly – to handle one back in the academy, and you knew at least enough not to have the weapon explode in your face. You pull the trigger. The musket spits fire loudly… and the bullet thuds right into the wooden gates, leaving behind a small splinter. Ban turns around at a measured pace, his bloody face widened in a demonic grin. That caught his attention.

    He sprints at you, almost as fast as a horse. You stumble backwards and hurl the musket at him. It bounces harmlessly off his chest. He is almost upon you when you drag up a shield to cover yourself. The sword he wielded smashed against it – you could feel the metal straining, buckling under the force of his blow. A jolt ran through your arm. Instinctively, you roll to your left, dodging the next strike. He was upon you again, faster and quicker than any man you had ever seen. All you could do was parry wildly with the shield. You could feel invisible fingers attempting to wind around your limbs and body, but you manage to break their grip frantically. Though Ban’s powers were stronger, you could still fend them off if you applied your own telekinesis right before they struck.

    Ban howls in rage as you continue to evade him. Angered, he takes a hasty step forward. His foot catches in the guts of one of his victims and he stumbles. You take your chance. Charging forward, you swing the shield with all your might, catching Ban’s temple with the hard steel edge. It was a blow that would have crushed the skull of any man. The noise of cracking bone resounded across the plains as the shield embeds itself in Ban’s skull. Then, his hand closes around your shield arm. That grin was back on his face, his blood-stained teeth exposed in all their glory. Was it a feint that you fell for? Ban’s grip tightens, forcing you to loosen your hold on the shield in pain, and before you know it, the world is a blur. You watch the murky grey sky move above you as you are hurled back. Somehow, you manage to land on your feet, your boots skidding in the mud.

    Then, an excruciating, stinging pain fills your chest. Ban had closed the distance in the blink of an eye. His twisted, dented mug was smiling crazily in front of you, his eyes sparkling with bloodlust. The accursed sword had been driven through your chest. You scream from the pain, but only an audible croak escapes your lips, the rest of the desperate sound tearing through your vocal cords at a pitch too high to hear. The pain only heightens as you could feel threads digging through your body from where the sword had entered, spreading everywhere and writhing under your skin. In the haze of agony, you were brought closer to the dark sentience behind the blade than ever. The threads made their way into your brain, probing, searching… draining. And then, a quiver of hungry excitement shuddered through the sword’s thoughts, if you could call it that. Connected this way, you knew what it had found.

    The location of the First Emperor.

    If it could think, it could be reasoned with. This could be your only chance. “You want to get there, don’t you?”

    A feminine, gentle voice came in return. “It’s a meal I have desired for ages.” If it was the voice of the sword, it sounded nothing like what you were expecting, and it sounded pleased.

    “How would you get there?”

    “I will ask this host to bring me there.”

    “Ask? You have driven him mad. Go ahead, ask him right now.”

    There was a brief moment of silence before the voice returned, slightly annoyed. “He does not respond. He answers only to my hunger. Why?”

    You don’t know why, but you continue communicating all the same. “I can bring you there.”

    “Ah… to have him as a feast. Ean. Ean.” The sword was near blissful at the thought of devouring the Emperor. “You can bring me there?”

    “I can, but I cannot do it if you have eaten me, no?”

    “But you are such a tasty morsel…”

    “Then the feast of the Emperor will be so much more delicious for your hunger. Don’t you find that having something after a long period of abstinence is all the more… exciting?”

    “Yes, yes… you are right,” breathes the voice heavily. “I will not eat you now. Bring me to Ean. Bring me to him.”

    The pain subsided as the sword’s presence began to disengage from your mind. It was happy, and had restrained itself from feeding upon you, and in that instant you had realized that it was wide open. You seize the presence mentally, attempting to impose your will upon it.

    “We had a promise!” it shrieks.

    “This is the only way I will be able to get you to your feast, dear sword. You would turn me into a mindless avatar of your hunger otherwise. Like him.”
    The sword rages against your attempt to subdue it, and a vast darkness overwhelms your mind. A deep, primordial hunger permeated your very being as it did so, attempting to strip away all that you knew and remembered. It drowned you with its arguments, telling you that you were an insignificant flea in an insignificant world, and submission was your only chance at survival.

    Still, it was not enough to break you.

    You are Diogenes Camna. You would be a poor excuse for a man if you let such toys manipulate your reason for existence. You can sacrifice anything at all to get ahead because you knew the universe was your plaything and nothing else mattered as long as you won. Your ego would not be defeated by some two-bit cursed sword the royal family dredged out from some vault.

    “No… I don’t think so. You are mine.” You force the sentience of the blade under your control with a harsh effort. Soon it recognizes your logic and ceases to resist, acknowledging your will for now.

    “But we have a promise… keep it…” muttered the sword as it faded away.

    Your eyes snap open. The sword itself was still stuck in your chest, but Ban was no longer wielding it. He was slumped on the ground in front of you. As you watch, amazed, the sword melts into your body, sealing the wound. You sense that you could call it whenever you wish. You kneel down and check on Ban. His eyes were wide open and he was unmoving, but he was alive. You get no response from him when you shake him. If you were lucky, he would stay that way for good.

    ***

    When all was said and done, the survivors at Euphraxes numbered about 10,000 men. Garsu never returned from his scouting of Odessa, and you learn that he had fled right back to Ankida with many tales of your incompetence. The tribes of Rus had scattered again, the Madman no longer holding any influence with them after the disastrous siege. They would not trouble the Empire for some time.

    Across the borders, however, things have taken a turn for the worse. The royal family of Skane had been murdered by Jannik’s cult; Prince Dagrun had then reappeared to ‘defeat’ Jannik, gaining his allegiance, and crowned himself Boy-Emperor of the Shinar. All of Skane now bowed to him, and he had set his designs on Ankida itself.
    Britannia and Gallia had declared independence under the influence of the Martyrs, seceding from the Empire. The kings of Britannia and Gallia had not raised arms, but vowed to respond to any attempts to bring them back into the Imperial embrace by force.

    Down south, the plague of the walking dead had begun to spread beyond Imperial efforts to control. Egypt had been hit particularly hard, with reports of attacks coming all along the Nile.

    ***

    A. You return to Ankida to depose of the Imperial family and take the throne. With the eyewitness accounts of your actions and the mysterious sword, you could definitely succeed.

    B. You return to Ankida as a hero, not a conqueror. You will serve the Imperial family and continue their reign, but of course, in the end you would be ruler in all but name.

    C. The greatest threat to your plans would be the awakening of the Emperor. You travel to New Athens to make good on your promise to the sword - surely getting rid of Ean now would be the wisest decision you could make.
     
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  4. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    :bravo::hero:

    As for the choices, fuck. Fuckity fuck fuck. I told you that Aodh was stirring some shit up in the west and it is goddamn miracle that we stopped the Madman(really, the only other person I'd expect something like this from is Ean).

    Let's go to Iceland and flipflop on our promise.
    C.

    treave, you deus-ex'd us again, didn't you?

    Edit:
    Wait a second... Pahnrath, is that you?
     
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  5. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Very serious question: how much more updates do we have? I simply wish to know our room for maneuver.

    And possibly whether or not A and/or B equal chapter end.
     
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  6. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    I'm all ears and if you have a plan, by all means, do tell.
     
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  7. GreyViper Erudite

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    Tempted to go C, just not sure we have tied all the loose ends. Id like to know if the are more artifacts, tomes or lore to be gained that would hasten the return of Ean. Oh and what a cliffhanger it would be if Dio would be set up as Eans nemesis.
    Also can we now regrow our second eye back?
    Oh yeah if we do go B route, 1st to taste the blade will be Garsu.
     
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  8. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Actually it is easy to wake Ean up. You don't even need the sword. Getting to where you can wake him up is was the tricky part.
     
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  9. GreyViper Erudite

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    So let me get this straight, in case of MadMan he was just building up his powerbase/army to reach Eans resting place?
    I just thought who ever went to awaken Ean would need more then just his location.
     
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  10. treave Arcane Patron

    treave
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    Who says he wanted to reach that place? Fenrir only revealed that the Madman believed he would awaken should he reach Ean... not that he had any desire to. :troll:

    Everyone else seems to want to. :shrug:
     
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  11. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    So, it's a choice between "bandwagon" and "EDGA-Y!", huh?
    Personally, this is one of those few instances where I couldn't care less about staying in-character. As fun as Dio is, and as much as he tickles all of my Tzeentch fanboy senses, we can't afford his shit and we need Ean back, NOW. The Empire is falling, already fell actually, apart and the only one who stands even a lick of a chance of salvaging this crap is the #1, Big E himself.

    However, for all you LARPers out there, think of it this way: Dio is not stupid and would know that he, by himself, would only rule a quarter of the "Empire", fighting against innumerable opponents from both without and within(really, the royal family, for one, will surely conspire to at least marginalize him and dispose of him in the end:remember, they have a shitton of Watchers on their side), with a severely depleted military force. And what's to say Tamur or the Concordiat will not seize this opportunity to grill him from the other direction?
    For him, Ean would be a means to an end, a very effective means to a very grand end, since we already witnessed his "Will to Power," and established that he is "an pretty cool guy, subdues eldtrich abominations and doesn't afraid of anything."

    As good an explanation as any, but I would really like for him to eventually disappear into Olympus and go full-on Tzeentch: Giant Spheres v Diogenes Camna's giant spheres, Battle of the Millenium!

    Edit:
    I disagree, rather strongly.
     
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  12. GreyViper Erudite

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    To be honest Ean does not need to lead mankind, thats what other pawns are for. All he has to be is the top dog, beating all the challengers and set the course for the mankind to follow. Ofcourse you can count on extra dimensional shenanigans to turn all the plans upside down.
     
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  13. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Considering that I was at the forefront of `99% of them, no. No, you do not.
    However, that's what awesome about Ean and why he should lead mankind: face it, he's shaping up to be the GEoM of Warhammer 40k fame. His stupid, emotional and idealistic shit represents the soul of mankind. Yes, he can be a hard bastard, manipulative, guileful and cruel, when he must. But on the whole, he is a good person that genuinely cares for humanity(hell, he's more human than most humans, without actually being human) and even somewhat for the Gieloth, at least those of them that are willing to work with him and humanity. Not to mention he is a strong personality that wins genuine loyalty from his people and even enemies(see Sek and Edem).

    That is why I want him back: he is both the BRO this dimension needs and the BRO it deserves.

    Edit:
    Trust me, if not for these shenanigans with the Masters being able to nuke our test world if it "doesn't meet the bottom lines" and space squids fucking around with the planet and the Empire falling apart, I'd be jumping over. A pity treave can't/won't give us an opportunity to split between characters. We certainly have enough people and this setting certainly has enough lore to accommodate.
     
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  14. oscar Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

    oscar
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    I'll have to think about this one.
     
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  15. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    [​IMG]I FEEL THE WARP OVERTAKING ME!!!
    To play the hero or the potential Tzeentch? Why must this be so difficult?

    On a much more serious note (and without going in to the debate of idealism vs cynicism, which is better and why?. Unless you really want to(I do)), neither does Dio: he is a maimed, bi-polar, sociopathic cunt. His power is way less that of Ean, so he stands even less of a chance. His knowledge of the entities and plots outside the mundane are non-existent. Anbar'Shi is an unreliable "ally" at best. If we are to seize power as Dio right now, it will be a catastrophe waiting to happen: we already showed ourselves that Kodex Kannot into Konspiracies (see: Watchers, Aodh, RK-47 and the Imperial family, Madman, Joan, Dagrun). The only way to succeed as Dio, I think, is to go to Iceland and feed Ean to Anbar'Shi and absorb, at the very least, his memories.

    Of course, my answer to that is a firm "fuck that!", but if Dio is the person you want to win this, then that is the course of action that will most likely lead to success.
     
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  16. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    Well, the Shin'Ar Empire lasted for three thousand years and it took the Kodex to break it(if we hadn't chosen to come back to Earth, everything would have been fine and dandy: which is the crux of the matter, it is not the characters who fuck up. It's us. And it's not the characters who succeed: again, it's us.), so I wouldn't call Ean's legacy "something the wind can break," exactly. Also, you are ignoring the fact that Ean can be awakened by someone else, as there are a hundred total "children" of his, and that would be to our detriment.

    And as for "silly rabbit, heroes are so quaint": everyone says that. And then one shows up and they change their tune. Again, the power of success and failure is in our hands.
     
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  17. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    We also know that Ean is Anbar'Shi, and vice-versa, simply divided into two separate psyches. He can also tame/subdue it and regenerate it from his body, so I would not be surprised if he could actually track it, however that last part is speculation.

    Indeed it was. What I'm saying is that it was us that lead him to triumphs and failures.
     
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  18. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    I do see the point you are trying to make. However, our success-to-failure ratio will not change by switching characters (just look at this chapter, for instance, and all the crazy, stupid and harmful shit Dio has done, not to mention him having zero impact on the secession crisis: we are just as capable of fucking up Dio as we are Ean), it will change by us actually succeeding more, with any character. Ean has his strengths and perks Dio doesn't have and vice-versa.

    However, if I understood this correctly
    your plan is to ride Dio for all he's worth and then dump him when we're ready for the "next phase?"

    Neither do I. The stars, they're a-callin'.
     
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  19. Baltika9 Arcane

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    Hmm... While certainly attractive, what with keeping Ean a secret/more political bastardry/goddamn Tzeentch, it seems to me that this plan is much more risky and difficult for no good reason: what can Dio, a mere child in comparison to Ean, do that the other can't? Even when wee take away their powers, Ean has centuries of warfare, political and social experience and millenia of mental discipline(so no mind rapes by Shulgi/Fenrir/RK/Anbar'Shi/Concordiat cronies). Ean can read minds farther and better than Dio can, he is a stronger personality and has a bigger legend behind him. Not to mention that if we come across one of our old bros, we will be in a much higher position of advantage, once we get over the whole "Jesus Christ you're a retard" stage.
    The :troll: here would be if all those skin grafts de-powered him to Dio's level (...they did, didn't they?)

    So, in conclusion, it is an attractive idea, certainly, as it allows us to preserve some secrecy as to Ean's presence, perhaps get another timeskip and simply a more conflict-laden storyline; but in the end not enough to justify the risk and myriad of pitfalls we will come across, that won't happen if we play as Ean. At least, that's my view for now. I'll ponder it for a bit more.
     
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  20. Azira Arcane Patron

    Azira
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    I agree with Baltika9 and disagree with root. I want Ean back. For the reasons Baltika9 have listed.

    As to which option will actually lead to that outcome, well. I'm not sure.

    But still, even if we don't get Ean back, I'll be here for the ride all the same. :salute:
     
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  21. Kipeci Magister

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    Diogenes is certainly not doing any better than Ean did. Ean forged an empire that lasted for thousands of years and laid the groundwork for pretty much everything we have; Diogenes screws up at every turn because the Codex cannot into intrigue, while he's not that good at much else. Is there a single thing we've attempted with Dio that hasn't turned out disastrously aside from managing to get out of said self-inflicted disasters?
     
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  22. Tigranes Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    What matters is not Ean's personality, but his power and his reputation - because in the end we control him.

    How easy do you think it will be for Dio to become the Emperor and make sure all the pieces stay together, to defeat Dagrun/Jannik, etc - compared to what happens when Ean Returns? Our immediate options will be superior because Ean is a lot more powerful, and in the long run I want this to be Ean's story for the stars.

    What I don't know is if C will actually get us there effectively. Has the Anbar-shi absorption healed all our wounds? I suppose we don't know yet exactly what changes it has entailed for us, or increase in powers?
     
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  23. Baltika9 Arcane

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    Azira, Tigranes: I'm pretty sure that C gets us to Iceland. The only thing I'm not sure about is whether or not the garrison comes with us or if we'll be able to break our "promise" to Anbar'Shi.
     
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  24. Esquilax Arcane

    Esquilax
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    I think that root is being a little too harsh on Ean's character. Yes, he has made choices based on emotion/honor before, but many of the poor choices we made had nothing to do with honor, they were just stupid choices. Look back at the rift-jumping debacle; it was completely obvious that jumping into a rift without any support whatsoever was a terrible idea, but people were unwilling to gamble on using the last piece of Vajra. On a related note, I don't think it's a surprise that after that event, the voters have been far more comfortable with taking risks (i.e. right now, back in Skane where we met Fenrir) - that's really been the key difference in my opinion. It's important to keep in mind that Dio's own lust for power has put us in some very shitty situations as well, so things aren't so clear cut.

    Now, I'm not saying that Ean should remain the idealistic, death before dishonor young man that he was serving under King Sargon and later in Egypt, but I am saying that you aren't giving him enough credit. Ean's honorable tendencies did fuck him over during the Theseus chapter, but it's important to note that we ended up being put in a difficult position because we wanted the easy way out - we manipulated Minos' daughters instead of using Aphrodite's love potion against Minos himself. And I'd also like to reiterate that the foolish choice at the end of Chapter 6 was more the result of short-sightedness and voter stupidity rather than Ean's character flaws. Really, it's all up to us.

    Also, I never found Ean self-righteous at all. He was just a guy trying to do the right thing, always was, and he was never a hypocrite. Yes, he had the Gieloth hunger/corruption, but he fought it at every turn, and when push came to shove, he chose several millenia of torment over giving in to the hunger. I like Dio, but Ean will always be #1 to me.

    As for this choice, there are a few things to note:

    I don't think that this is the last we've seen of Anbar-Shi. I think it's down, but not out.


    The sword has melted within us. So if Dio touches the sleeping Emperor, will it be the Emperor regaining his own form, or will it be Anbar-Shi feasting on Ean? This is questionable, and somehow I doubt that Ean will just come back if we run off to Iceland. I think that the sword still has one ace left up its sleeve.

    It's very important to remember that Dio's lust for power can be just as much of a detriment as Ean's compassion and desire to do the right thing whenever he can. I see shades of Sebastian LaCroix in this situation. I don't think it's going to be as simple as opening the sarcophagus and achieving our full power. I think that going to Iceland might simply result in the sword devouring Ean.
     
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  25. Baltika9 Arcane

    Baltika9
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    :love::codexisfor:

    The concern is valid, of course, but I doubt Ean's psyche(and what a psyche it is) will go down without a fight. Besides which, the sword needs to be impaled into someone to feast on them. We can simply do this the smart way and summon the sword, put it on the side, say ten meters away from us, and then touch Ean.
     
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