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Myth: A New Age CYOA

Discussion in 'Choose Your Own Adventure Land' started by Fangshi, Jan 15, 2014.

  1. Nevill Arcane

    Nevill
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    Let me make one last attempt to make a case for why talking to the Goddess might be a decent idea.

    Now that her plan with the spearhead have failed, the only way for her to use the artefact for the intended purpose (which, I assume, would be killing the necromancer girl along with her offspring) is by our own hands. If anyone knows how to activate the spear, she does, and it might shave off a good chunk of time Jan needs to spend on researching the item.

    Similarly, since she is in command of about half of the dwarven army by virtue of House Berg, there is potential for coordinating our actions so that we would still find the army standing when we get there.

    Naturally, there is always a possibility (more like a certainity) of treachery when dealing with her, but if we are smart about what we hear and what we say, and don't take everything she says at face value, I think we might end up better off than if we dive into this mess blindly.

    If she considers dealing with us, she'll want to use us to get rid of the Watcher's agents for her and get killed in the process. We might exploit that desire of hers.
     
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  2. Kz3r0 Arcane

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    The spearhead can be used against her as well, I doubt she will be so nice to reveal its proper use to us.
     
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  3. Nevill Arcane

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    Assuming we will ever go to her plane. She is not actually here, though she wants in. Going to her place of power is more risky for us than it is for her. We are just two somewhat talented mortals while she is a god.

    I doubt we will be killing any gods in the nearest hundred years. The caliber is too different.

    The secrets of the spearhead will be ours all the same, time is the only issue. And since the necromancer is the only one who is within our reach... I think it it not too foolish to account for the possibility of sharing the knowledge.
     
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  4. Kz3r0 Arcane

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    A scheming, treacheous, ages old dark entity tends to be quite prudent and to plan in advance.
    Besides, the spearhead will give us a deadly weapon against her, us her very mortal enemies, while losing the dwarven kingdom to the Watcher could be bad not even come close to the alternative.
    And he knows perfectly well that we will fight the Watcher no matter what, in fact this is the ideal set up for her, two of her worst enemies battling each others, why she would give us an edge that can be used against her as well?
     
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  5. Nevill Arcane

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    Because that edge can not be used against her any time soon and she plans to kill us once we are no longer useful?

    Because she does nor have this edge anymore, and once we fail, she will fail, too?

    It is like you said. The situation where we and the Watcher would kill each other is ideal to her, but we are definitely weaker. Therefore, it might be in her interests to even the odds so that both sides take heavy casualties.

    There are reasons why it might work. Depends on her motivations, really.

    I don't see the downside in trying, at the very least.
     
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  6. Kz3r0 Arcane

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    What every mortal thought when dealing with demons.
    By the way I have a better proposal, let's combine an encounter with Morpheus and she-who-wait, ask them how to use the spearhead, they were there too remember, and the extoll an oath from her, in exchange for her help against the murderous sister we will help to instate her on the throne of the spider realm.
     
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  7. Nevill Arcane

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    Wasn't she the one who asked Morpheus to spare her sister? If she wanted to rule, why would she not allow to kill the Goddess then?

    Yes, it is on my to do list to visit She-Who-Waits, too, but one meeting is not a substitute for the other.

    Even if we do not succeed in gaining any useful intel concerning the situation in the south, there is always merit in knowing your enemy. What are her weaknesses, what are her strong points? Even our illiterate maul knows how important those are:
    Is she vain? Is she proud? Is she prone to fits of anger? Does she have a breast size complex? We know too little about her.

    We ourselves have learned the importance of finding out about your enemies. In our very first fight with the Thin White Mage we chose to employ mental spells as it was our most practiced school of magic, and nearly paid for it with our lives because trying to appeal to his emotions and desires was futile. We did not make the same mistake twice after we learned what makes him tick - instead, we appealed to his pride and curiosity, and tried to trap him with a promise of our capture. Time will tell if it was effective or not.

    There is another precedent that is a part of Myth lore. Connacht, the Great Hero of the Wind Age, who slew the previous Leveller and drove the Myrkridia to extinction, was later reincarnated as Balor and laid waste to the Empire of Cath Bruig. He kept many of the traits he had when he was human, though, and a passionate hatred for everything connected to the Myrkridia was one of them. Alric, knowing this, procured a battle standard of the beasts from the Tain where they were exiled, and during their final confrontation he taunted Balor about teaching him a lesson in humility, raising the standard. Enraged, Balor came to challenge Alric in person, whereupon he was trapped and immobilized with the help of the Eblis Stone, and then hacked to pieces by the remains of the Legion.

    None of this could have happened, had Alric not exploited the quirks in his adversary's character.

    Of course, this goes both ways. For every thing we learn about the Goddess, we reveal something about ourselves. But she has thousands of eyes and ears to spy for her. We only have our own. I find such a trade acceptable.

    Knowledge is power.
     
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  8. Fangshi Arcane

    Fangshi
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    At the moment 1.D and 2.Biii are in the lead while question 3 (four votes for A and four votes for B) and question 4 (three votes for Ai and three votes for B) are both currently tied.

    When the ties are resolved I will close the vote.
     
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  9. Azira Arcane Patron

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    Alright.
    3B
    4Aii>B
     
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  10. Azira Arcane Patron

    Azira
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    :troll:
     
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  11. Nevill Arcane

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    Hmmm... Should I vote for 4Aii>Ai to make it extra :troll:?
     
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  12. Fangshi Arcane

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    So by my count that should solve things.

    Your winning options are as follows:

    1.D You will have Wenzel summoned in the morning.

    2.Biii You will have a special dream created for Hallr where his friends are still alive and well.

    3.B You will not tell him that Janine and his subordinates are dead

    4.B You will not meet with the Spider Goddess at this time.

    The update will either be up some time in the next twelve hours or if I do not have time it will be up in thirty to thirty six hours.

    On another note the Nanshe interlude is also largely done though it could do with a bit more editing, it will go live when (if?) this arc ends (when you leave the city).
     
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  13. Absinthe Prophet

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    Fangshi, since the update isn't out yet, if it's not too late, can we change the request from Morpheus so that he frees Melete instead of giving us Hallr's information?
     
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  14. Nevill Arcane

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  15. Absinthe Prophet

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    I have another question though. Can Morpheus inform us how to get on Icelos's good side?

    I'm rather interested in shapeshifting and primal magics like the Warrior's Mask and I wouldn't mind making friends with Icelos. The wolf trip was interesting.

    I presume we'd have to get much stronger and develop more of a martial bent first, is that right?
     
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  16. Fangshi Arcane

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    He can introduce you to his brother(s) if you would like.

    He says they are a bit dangerous though (and that is coming from Morpheus who is himself quite predatory) he will not be able to watch your dreams at all times so once they are aware of your presence it is likely that they might show up from time to time.

    Well learning how to shapechange in your dreams is not that difficult and is mostly a question of will. Morpheus could probably show you the basics and Icelos could show you several tricks that few others know. This is different from shapeshifting in the physical world however, the Dreaming Princes will not be much help in that regard. To learn how to 'properly' shapeshift, like Soulblighter could, you will need to figure out the spells he used (likely a Dream) and that knowledge has been 'lost to the world'.

    Downside of that is that it likely will be difficult to do. Upside of that is that you are not likely to fight shapeshifters all that often and if you do figure it out you will be one of only a few (perhaps the only one) that can do so.

    You can not be sure what sorts of skills are needed to shapeshift though it is likely that high physical stats would make things easier.


    Anyway the update is still making slow but persistent progress. I lost the time I had set aside to finish it so I just need to clear a bit of time to actually work on it. I can not give a good estimation at the moment but I hope to have it out before the weekend.
     
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  17. Nevill Arcane

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    I've been thinking our financial situation over.

    How many of his own funds Mayer has left? Does he take a cut from our profits? What is his interest in having a partnership with us?

    In 'The Cost of Doing Business' it was mentioned that he has about 300 WPs available for a loan under 15% monthly interest rate.

    And it was mentioned that we can delay payments if need be:
    What I have in mind is a business proposal for him.

    - Have Mayer loan us his funds to pay back a part of the loan we owe to Goldsmiths before the end of first month.
    - Have him agree to charge his interest at a flat rate, and not demand it before we pay off our debt to Goldsmiths. Since we are partners, and he is in charge of most of our financial operations, our money are essentially his money.
    - On our part, we will promise that our income will be dedicated to paying the Goldsmiths off ASAP. It is for our own benefit, too.
    - After we pay the Goldsmiths, we will repay our debt to Mayer, starting with the interest that was accumulated during this time.

    A bit of good old math to demonstrate my point.

    We now have about 260 WPs of raw monthly income after paying off all the expenses. We currently have to pay 200 WPs to Goldsmiths monthly as per the interest rate. Let's assume our income and expenses will stay constant through the year.

    If Mayer pays off 300 WPs worth of our debt, and delays the payment, we can reduce our loan to 700 WPs, making the monthly interest rate drop to 140 WPs. After paying it and paying 100 WPs on top of that, we may reduce our debt to Goldsmiths to 600 WPs at the end of the first month.

    Our debt to Mayer would be 300 WPs and 45 WPs worth of interest.

    At the end of the second month, we can reduce our debt to Goldsmiths to 450 WPs (and the interest rate to 90 WPs). At the end of the third month it is going to shrink to 280 and ~60 WPs respectively. At the end of the forth, a mere 80 WPs.

    In five months, we will be done with it completely.

    Meanwhile, we would owe Mayer 300 WPs + 45*5 = 525 WPs, which we would be able to pay in two more months.

    What is in it for us? Well, we will pay less interest and will get a chance to be done with this rather dangerous business in half a year and finally start making money.
    What is in it for Mayer? We might pay less interest, but we will pay it to him instead of some other banker. We are in this business together, so the less money we owe to others, the better.

    Would such a deal be acceptable to him?
     
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  18. archaen Arbiter Patron

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    I basically wanted us to do this when we first took out the loans.
     
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  19. Fangshi Arcane

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    He would likely have a few conditions if he were to lend out money in that way since he would have no real protection if you die before paying off his loan. If you can provide him with some sort of guarantee that he will get the money back then he could probably be convinced to lend you the sum.

    Also if you want him to charge interest at a flat rate you would have to promise him a favour to be collected at a time of his choosing.
     
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  20. Nevill Arcane

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    Which is why I asked what does our partnership entail.

    When we made Gareth our partner, we have made him third-in-command. I thought that by making Mayer a partner we have made him into one of us, or rather into someone who has a stake in all of our enterprizes.

    What happens with our assets after we die? Don't they belong to the Lost to do as they see fit, meaning that our ownership does not end with our death. They will sitill continue to exist even after we die and they still continue to make money that would go first towards paying off the debt, and then towards the needs of our circle.

    What kind of guarantee does he need?

    If they do not belong to the Lost, but strictly to Derryth and Thais, well, there are wills for that. Give the rights of ownership to Gareth and Brigit in case of our death and let Mayer keep his position of our accountant. Would that not be possible?

    Why was he ready to loan us that kind of money in 'The Cost of Doing Business'? What guarantees he had then?

    Haha, nice try. I would agree to it, though, but I would add a condition that if we find his favor too bothersome, we reserve the right to pay the difference in cash. A quick count provides these numbers:

    Flat rate, 5 months: 300 WPs + 300*0.15*5 WPs = 525 WPs
    Exponential rate, 5 months: 300 WPs *(1.15)^5 = 600 WPs

    As long as we can bow out of his favor for ~75 WPs (or whatever the difference is at a moment of request), I will consider the deal acceptable. Just so that he does not try to demand something outrageous, which, knowing his ruthless nature, he might.
     
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  21. Fangshi Arcane

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    Sort of, they occupy the same sort of formal 'rank' within your broader organization but they are two very different people with different concerns and expectations. Gareth, like most of the people that spent all that time under Muirthemne, views the Lost as a sort of extended family or circle of friends. Mayer does not.

    Well you have not stipulated anything so it would largely depend on how you die and who is left to manage things. There is a good chance Mayer would be able to rescue most of your assets though he would be well within the law to keep them all for himself if he wanted.

    If you would like to draw up a formal will feel free to brainstorm and propose something.

    Yes and no. The Lost as a single legal entity does not exist. Currently there is Gareth's mercenary company, your Circle under Muirthemne and a dwarven trading company formed by Mayer and they are all using the same name but G&B are not listed as owners/officers in the Kingdom. If D&T die then legally the assets you have would likely go to Mayer. In his mind (and indeed the minds of most dwarves) that would not cover the debt you owe him. Your loan from him would be a private one much like your loan from the Goldsmiths. The debt would actually go to Biliku and Uttu as your closest 'kin', the kids would be expected to pay it off somehow. Mayer could help them but he would be under no obligation to do so.

    Well, you could draw up a promissory note to cover the 300WPs from your reserves in Muirthemne, he might take that though it would take a bit of persuading. Or you could give him something that is worth the 300WPs to hold until you can repay him (for example the half of the Halcyon Stone you own).

    Really he just wants something to reassure him that he will not be out the 300WPs if something happens to you, if you can come up with something sufficiently important/of sufficient worth then it will go a long way towards convincing him.

    It should be possible though the dwarves would want Gareth and Brigit to witness and sign the documents.

    Well, you had just crushed Eberhardt and it seemed worth the risk to back your rise to power with his own resources. Then Blackrock happened and now you are planning on heading into a warzone. Giving you money now is a riskier proposition (or at least it appears that way to the banker).

    He is willing to accept that modification to his request.
     
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  22. Nevill Arcane

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    Sorry, I do not get that part. The way you describe our relationship with him, he gets most or all of the assets in the case of our death, and none of the responsibilities, as the debt gets dumped on Biliku and Uttu. That's not how a partnership works. The partners are supposed to share both the benefits and the risks.

    The scenario where one partner legally 'owns' the debt and the other legally 'owns' everything bought from the money that came from that debt should not be possible with anyone who is not completely stupid. The debt and the assets bought from it can't be divided between the parties. Either the debt goes to Biliku and Uttu along with the status of Mayer's partners and the income that would help them repay it, or the assets go to Mayer along with the obligations to pay that debt.

    What would stop Mayer from hiring an elite mercenary team to eliminate his 'partners' if he does not have to deal with what comes afterwards and can have all our enterprises to himself for free? That is not a loophole that I think Derryth and Thais would overlook. Hell, I don't think that's a loophole that the Goldsmiths would overlook, either. Would the bankers let us transfer legal rights to the land and enterprises to someone else and go 'lol, sorry, we are broke' when we die?

    That's why Thais had to flee after her father went bankrupt, right? Whoever gets the inheritance, gets the responsibilities. If Mayer holds legal rights to our property after our deaths, he should also hold the corresponding responsibilities.

    And if Mayer is to be expected to pay off the debt from the finances he gets out of our assets after our deaths, then what difference does it make if he has guarantees of us returning his new loan if that loan goes to settle the debt anyway? He will have to pay the debt regardless, no?

    An example of what I mean. Mayer has 300 WPs in reserves. Our debt is 1000 WPs. If we take a loan from him and use it to repay the debt, our debt shrinks to 700 WPs. If we die the next day, he would be expected to pay it using the investments he made with our money.
    If he does not give us a loan, and we die tomorrow, he gets saddled with a 1000 WPs debt and now has to pay 300 WPs out of his reserves to get it under control. Same deal.
    If we don't die, he gets to profit from the interest.

    Now, if we were to take that loan for private purposes, leaving him with 1000 WPs worth of debt and no reserves to pay it, that would have been troublesome for him. But that's not what we are proposing.

    Does what I am saying make sense?

    That's not to say we can't offer him guarantees, I am just trying to make a point why it should not matter too much in this case.

    That brings me to the previous question. What kind of partnership do we have with him? Is he taking a cut from our income? Or does he have a say of how we spend our money? What are we expected to do if there is a disagreement on how to use it?

    I imagine that relates to the actual transfer of ownership, and not to the will itself?

    The will usually does not require the presence of the party that is supposed to inherit stuff.
     
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  23. Fangshi Arcane

    Fangshi
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    Sorry if I caused any misunderstandings, I was working on a couple different things at the same time and looking back over it what I wrote is not that clear (for example I should not have used the word 'legally' in my post when all that I meant was that it would begin a legal process that is likely to see Mayer acquire most of your assets).

    I will endeavor to clarify.

    You are in fact in a partnership with Mayer, he manages the money, he deals with the little matters (and a lot of the big ones), and he essentially runs the entire enterprise while D&T give him broad direction from time to time. The 1000WPs debt and all of your properties are tied to the company he is managing in your name. Legally though he is your employee, he pays himself with a portion of the wealth he acquires in your name(s) (roughly 5%) which he writes off as consulting fees and assorted contracting fees. (He has made a healthy sum thus far.) He does not take a cut of the income from your properties (at least not yet). Where an actual dwarven 'partner' is required for you to seize and hold assets he makes use of one of many fake identities he has set up over the years. There is nothing on paper that ties him to you as your formal partner (it was simply the cost of doing business with him and a result of his headstrong nature). Many that hold real power in the city are aware of your partnership but that is not a direct concern to him most of the time. There are exceptions though, his run in with a minor House while you were gone for example.

    Now, should you die a great many things might happen but dwarven law states that all assets and debts on your names should fall to your next of kin. Most of the dwarves are under the mistaken belief that the two of you (or at least one of you) are related to the girls somehow (cousins, sisters, whatever). As a result your assets and debt should go to them. They could always refuse, citing the fact that you are not actually a relative, should they so choose.

    If Mayer chooses to help them then they might be able to manage but without help it is unlikely they could. If the business fails then Mayer, as your employee, can walk away without any obligations under the law and without much of a hit to his reputation. The debts of the company would fall to the girls and to Mayer's fake personas. The assets of the company would then be seized and Mayer, if he is as good as he says he is, likely has plans in place to seize up those assets as they become available should such a course of action be deemed beneficial to his interests.

    So:

    Your assets -----> the girls (?) -----> bankruptcy -----various underhanded dealings----> Mayer's assets

    Your debt --------> the girls (?) -------> bankruptcy ---->a 'wild goose chase' as the Goldsmiths try to find people that do not exist

    If you die there is a decent chance (in Derryth's estimation, of course) that your assets will wind up with Mayer. Of course all of this assumes that Mayer would not do the 'right thing' and help your successors properly manage the company. If you believe he would do the right thing then there is little to worry about.

    Well, you can only speculate on his motives since you do not have access to his thoughts but this is what Derryth thinks:

    Why would he try?

    If you continue to succeed like you have then he stands to gain by remaining your ally and partner.

    Alternatively if you fall then he is not exposed to, too much risk, though there are now a couple Great Houses that would not mind seeing him fall (nothing he has not dealt with before though).

    If he tries to kill/betray you then what would happen?

    If he wins he removes a threat to his enemies, not a particularly bright idea. If he loses, he loses everything. You have already gone up against Fallen Lords, Great Houses and the best mercenaries in the Kingdom and you are not dead.

    So it might be fair to reason that his odds would not be that good and as long as it makes more sense to help you (or at least not harm you) there is little incentive for him to try anything.

    Also, acquiring your assets would not be free.

    Finally he may just like the two of you, stranger things have happened. ;)

    That is correct, they would generally not agree to that. Though you/your successors would be sent to a debtor's prison if you tried something like that, they would not just let it go.

    Correct, by Imperial law she inherited all of his debt and assets. It is important to note though that humans tend to be more forgiving of debt in certain situations. Given the suicide of her father many of the creditors forgave the debts owed to them as Thaïs' father did the honourable thing expected of him. Of those that did not, most of them were dwarfs or represented parties operating out of the Kingdom. For a dwarf, debts are very serious business and can haunt families and Houses for generations.

    No, he has largely shielded himself from risk, or at least legal risk. One of your creditors could always send assassins after him. It would not be the first time.

    Yes, but all of that assumes he does not have other plans for the money. Plans that could make him far more than the interest you are proposing. The very fact that he is open to giving you the money instead should tell you something about the dwarf, even if he wants a guarantee.

    If I had to choose a word for what you have with Mayer I would pick 'understanding'. You have an 'understanding' with him whereby you all propose to profit as much as is decent from the situations that present themselves in the Kingdom. This involves a fair amount of give and take, he gives you information and offers his services where needed and in exchange he expands his own holdings, wealth and influence by taking advantage of the disruptions you have caused.

    Legally he is just your employee. Privately he is your partner.

    He finds ways to pay himself but he does not take funds produced directly by your assets. Most of what he gets paid come in the form of assorted fees.

    He has a say in how you spend your money only in so far as you let him or encourage him to do so. You give him the broad strategy which he attempts to follow but he often makes modifications as he sees fit.

    It is your money at the end of the day, if you do not want him to have access to it (should there be any disagreements) you can try to cut him off.

    He was by far the most competent of the options available to you but he is also the most secretive, head strong and opinionated, that is simply the trade off.

    That is correct.
     
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  24. Nevill Arcane

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    We definitely need to insert someone more capable like Gareth and Brigit in-between. :lol:

    Huh, are the girls even legally capable of managing the assets in our case? Aren't they too young? We can introduce Gareth as their guardian, which is also true to an extent.

    Seeing how he has funds to repay the debt and might have a use for massive income we are getting, it looks like a plan that all parties might agree to.

    We will also ensure the continuation of the business in case of our demise, and that is what troubles Mayer among other things, is it not?

    I don't know. 300 WPs is a lot, but it gets him 15% monthly while the most he could procure for us was ~30%.

    Meanwhile, we have 1000WPs invested in our enterprise, which is a much larger sum, that makes him money, too. The better is the state of our assets, the less money the greedy bankers get, the more we can invest further and the more money he will make.

    He might make a profit for himself out of those 300 WPs, but potentially he stands to gain even more from our partnership, provided that we are successful.

    Alright, so what would be involved in getting Gareth and Brigit on board? What legal documents need to be signed? What would be required from us to try and convince Mayer to trust us with additional funds provided that Gareth will pay them back?
     
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  25. Kz3r0 Arcane

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    Fangshi How about Miosguinn's cube, if his wife is really a revenant he could fins that extremely valuable.
     
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