>You are a young man named Lloyd from the frozen Northern mountains of Tordo, on the continent of Teege. After a youth spent learning magic, you and your girlfriend spent some time as bandits after your home was destroyed, but have recently taken a chance to escape that life into a legit one... As sellswords, admittedly, but it's better than nothing. When the situation calls for it, however, you might take on the POV of a character somewhere else for a thread.
>Your exact goal will change from thread to thread, most likely involving some job or another you've been sent on.
>The questmasters are Octoling (myself), and Grandflaw. There's no particular rhyme or reason to who posts when, and sometimes one of us might not appear all.
>Character Death is always a possibility and sometimes an inevitability (this is Fire Emblem after all), but your actions can very easily influence who lives and who dies.
>Voting periods will last an average of ten to fifteen minutes, but this may be increased, decreased, or generally changed at any given moment based on voter turnout.
>The previous threads are archived on suptg. A link to the most recent (coupled with summary and a handy list of names) is pasted http://pastebin.com/ns6J6anJ
>Our update twitter is https://twitter.com/qmgrandflocto and you can shoot us questions at http://ask.fm/qmgrandflocto
>An up-to-date link to all threads currently archived, both for this quest and its precursor: http://pastebin.com/Q77ts75m
A couple hours after Ansi and Asra's little disagreement about how (or even IF) to deal with the possibility of Calof's compromised status.
Ansi feels that he should just knock him out, search him for mind control (or destroy him if he turns out Wampyric. He doubts that's what it is, even if he's being controlled, but... It's a possibility), get rid of it if he can identify it.
Asra, meanwhile, would prefer to prevent more unnecessary infighting, especially since Ansi's basis for suspicion is simply that the normally-reserved and agreeable Calof acted horribly heated and paranoid.
Ultimately, they parted ways after nobody stepped into their fight, so naturally it's escalating now.
"Look, Lloyd, it's for Calof's own good. I'm certain Asra's gonna pull some stupid reverse-assassin bullshit and let him sabotage us if it turns out he's mind controlled," Ansi says, officially stopping you from just outright ignoring the situation. "Probably already warned him and everything..."
Asra, later, implores you, "Ansi is... Going too far with distrust now. I am tired of distrust and accusations of betrayal. People respect you, Lloyd. You can prevent this."
You wanted to stay out of this bullshit, and meanwhile Irene is off talking to General Yancy about the threat of Monique that you know to expect. So no sagely advice from your favorite witch.
>A. Keep staying out of this. Your involvement wouldn't help anything.
>B. Side with Ansi
>C. Side with Asra
Rolled 1 (1d2)
Shit, already had most of the post done before this second one showed for me. Regardless, this seems like something worth rolling over, unless guy #2 has no objections.
Y'know what? At the very least, you'll be able to get this whole episode out of the way with minimal risk of death. You know Ansi is... Not always so subtle, and his new hat is a representation of that.
For a very brief time, you break out your Flux tome, burying it in a pile of study materials and "happening" by Calof long before Ansi is apparently planning his own assault.
"Hey, Lloyd. Sorry about earlier," he says as he walks past. "Things get... Pretty heated around here, you know?"
You turn to face him once more and notice Asra ducking behind a wall. This is going to be harder than you thought, so there goes striking early.
"Yeah, I gotcha. I mean, you didn't really get a chance to be in the heated walkout the other week."
Calof chuckles and flies off, leaving you and Asra alone.
"...know you're there," you say, drawing her out.
"...that is an. Assortment of books," Asra says neutrally.
>A. It sure is. (Leave)
>B. Just bringing some stuff to Irene's magic labs
>C. Tell her not to follow you like that
>D. Write-in response
You groan. "Look... Don't follow me like that, alright?"
"Apologies. I was... Awaiting your answer is all."
"Await it in a more polite manner, then, would you?" You ask, exasperatedly.
"Will do," Asra says. "My apologies."
With how she acts, you sometimes forget that this woman's gotta be about twice your age.
A life of seclusion does that, you guess.
Anyway, she less-stealthily follows you to Irene's magic study, where you drop every bit of material you were carrying around.
"There... Any particular reason you're still following me?" You ask.
"Have you decided on your answer?" She asks.
>A. Tell her the truth
>B. You'll help her (lie)
>C. You'll help her (genuine change of heart)
>D. Try to explain that this is best for Calof; your involvement is for his safety
>E. Write-in response
>F. Not sure yet (lie)
You sigh. "You know what... I was leaning towards helping Ansi out, to be honest..."
Asra looks at you with her same neutral expression, yet somehow piercingly.
"Hey, let me finish. See, I've... Reconsidered. And now I wanted to help you keep Calof out of the line of fire. We really don't have reason to doubt the guy."
You feel as though you faintly detect a smile on her lips for a moment. "You are... A trustworthy person."
You smile back before asking, "alright, now... How much support does your standpoint have?"
"None whatsoever... Besides myself and you."
Your face faults, and you sigh once more. "So we've... Got our work cut out for us guarding Calof."
Asra's eyes widen very slightly. "Then maybe we shouldn't be-"
"Got him! Alright, now, someone fetch Lloyd so we can both search for mind control!"
Une answers the call, approaching the magic labs. "If you two are done sniffing the boss' lab equipment, we need the spirit charmer."
>A. Go without a word
>B. What the hell did they do?
>D. Apologize to Asra for messing it up
>E. Act like this was your plan all along
>F. Write-in response
"Uh... Sorry," you say to Asra (she doesn't respond, simply hurrying out towards the noise). You glare at Une. "The hell did you do?"
"Relax. Ansi knocked him out and immediately healed him. We know he's not a vampyre anyway."
"Okay, so it's not..." Ansi is kneeling and waving his hands over Calof's unconscious form. He shakes his head. "But they could still just... Ah, yeah, here we go."
"Here what goes?" You ask, more curious than mad at this point.
"See, Lupus was using a mind control spell he'd cooked up himself. Now that he's dead AND we can counter anyone who was previously brainwashed by the old one, they've moved into better-polished spells. Downside to this is that the fixes for these ones are more widely-known."
"...right." Thoroughly convinced that you and Asra were wrong, you join Ansi in kneeling. "If they're using more commonly-fixable mind controls now, check for redundancy. Mind control can stack if two sets of orders aren't mutually exclusive."
After that, several moments of tense silence follow as you and Ansi undo two or three layers of "known" mind control spells. Some more twice-overs after that, and you both call it a day.
"Distracting Asra like that..." Ansi says. "Not a bad tactic."
>A. Don't confirm or deny it
>B. It wasn't on purpose
>C. You'd meant to help her
>D. Yeah you totally meant to do that
>E. Write-in response
You and Asra admit to your mistakes, and you tell Ansi you were actually meaning to keep Ansi from actually killing him. Ansi glares with needless intensity.
A few minutes later, Calof awakens and mentions that, last he remembered before being certain the mind control had kicked in (between all the different spells, the past couple weeks have been a bit of a haze), shortly after he'd had some drinks with Marrius' grandfather Durvan and a few famous mercenaries, he headed to his inn of choice before being jumped by a housecat.
Une makes a quip about them chasing birds, about which Calof is not amused.
From what he remembers, his orders were to sow distrust in Marrius' Group if it looked like Irene wasn't going to rejoin her mentor's faction's efforts, and act as a second set of eyes in the sky if she was.
>A. Make fun of Calof for losing to a cat
>B. Spend time with someone before the "fun" begins (specify. Any named character known to be in Elza Oasis will be fine)
>C. Skip ahead
>D. Write-in response
Gotta go eat for a bit.
>B. Spend time with someone before the "fun" begins
He is probably the closest thing to a friend we have now, besides Irene (which is more teacher/student), and we haven't seen him in awhile.
You end up spending time with Ansi, and by extension Une, though briefly hitting it off with some admittedly-pretty girl leaves her to determine that she'd rather spend her time on subjects less... Male.
"And here I thought she wanted to hang out with us," Ansi says with a bitter tone. "Nice seeing you for the first time in weeks too, buddy!"
"Kiss my ass, Ansi!" Une calls back in a surprisingly neutral tone for a shout.
You ask if he and Une are even really all that friendly. Never got that vibe yourself.
"I mean we give each other shit, could definitely do without, but... You don't really forget years of partnership." He looks up at the lowering late-afternoon sun a moment before pulling the brim of his hat down. "I get it, though. If Jolie were here, I'd tell you both to fuck off. But she's off in Rakche's betraying asshole court of queen go-fuck-yourself!"
You need to spend the next several moments calming him down before he says, "I'm gonna go buy some tomes. All I have is this worn-out Light book that botanist gave me."
>A. Leave him to it
>B. Accompany him
>C. Say something (specify)
You and Ansi head to what's become your magic vendor of choice, the one belonging to an unusually friendly Anna.
"Hello, again, Lloyd~," she says. You didn't realize you were on a first name basis. Anyway, Anna turns towards Ansi, "and your friend here... May I say he has fantastic choice in hat! Why, he reminds me of some really valorous bounty hunter... The thought of his noble soul makes me want to offer you a discount, sir!"
"Thanks, I killed him." Ansi says. You cringe.
"Well, then..." Anna closes her eyes and smiles, somewhat sheepishly. "I... May need to... Lessen the style discount?"
Ansi stares wordlessly at her selection from a distance.
Meanwhile, Anna beckons you closer, whispering in her usual friendly tone, "tell me, Lloyd, should I have an eye on your friend here?"
>A. She just caught him in a bad mood
>B. He's a bit unstable
>C. You'll protect her if it comes to that~
>D. He recently broke out of prison in another country!
>E. He's a big joker
>F. Write-in response
"He has an... Odd sense of humor, is all. He's actually worked alongside Clint a couple times, assuming that's who you mean." Both of these statements are true, and they misleadingly imply things about whether Ansi actually killed Clint.
"Oh, that's a relief... How is Clint, though?" Anna asks.
"We only met briefly once a few months back, and he was doing fine then." You're good at not quite lying.
Anna has no real reason to doubt your word on this. "It should be another... Five days before your staff is here. Of course, if there's... Anything else you'd like in the meantime, I should be able to set you up~."
>A. Might as well look at her wares
>B. Write-in response
>C. You're good for the moment
>D. Be silent
"Eh, it's worth a look."
"Excellent. Just let me know if you see anything you like~."
You currently have 34,260 gold.
Only things really standing out to you are staves. Due to the influence of the spirits, your staff rank has already increased from what it was before.
(select all that apply)
>A. Rescue (doesn't work at as long ranges as warp staves, but at medium-to-short ranges can pull a target close to the user) 5,000 gold
>B. Berserk (if it affects a target, they will uncontrollably attack anything nearby until it wears off) 2,000 gold
>C. Something else? (specify and MAYBE you'll get whatever it is)
>D. On second thought, you're good
You end up dropping 7,000 gold, putting you down to 27,360 in an instant for the set of support staves.
"Will that be all?" She asks with the wink-and-grin that all Annas seem to have inherited.
"I'm good, thanks."
"Now if you're done hitting on Lloyd," Ansi says with disdain, "I have some things to spend money on."
"Oh, of course! Sorry for the delay, sir!"
After that, Ansi is quickly rung up. Light tomes, staves, pretty much what you'd expect. Then he pretty much drags you out of there.
As you walk towards headquarters from the shop, he says with a serious expression, "good on you for not giving in. She was just trying to woo you into tossing a bunch of money her family's way."
>A. How does he know
>B. You doubt that
>C. You didn't need a rescue
>D. Thank him. You were a bit bothered
>E. Write-in response
"How do you know?"
Ansi scoffs. "It's a city of merchants. One's getting too friendly with a customer, there's gotta be a catch."
"That's a... Fair enough assumption."
Ansi nods. "And most of Anna's family, they're masters of acting cute to boost sales."
"That... Seems a bit closed-minded."
"That's what all people from the boonies say..." Again, he gives you a serious expression. "Back when we were starting out, Une was literally screwed out of a lot of gold's worth of gifts by one of that family. Trust me on this, they in particular are bad news. Don't entertain bull for shit that they say that's beyond strictly business."
>A. You'll be careful
>B. You'll be careful (sarcastic)
>C. Go back to spite him
>D. You're not on the lookout anyway!
>E. Whatever. Can we get back to headquarters now
>F. Respectfully disagree
>G. Write-in response
"Look, I'm not even interested in entertaining anyone's advances. I'm just saying you're being a bit of a dick right now."
"Oh, so you still think you've got a shot with Leigh."
"Yes! Don't be condescending!"
Ansi looks... Genuinely offended. "Condescending? Of course not! That's the most inspiring shit I've heard since I got back! True love conquers all!"
Right. Ansi does have a romantic side to him, you often forget. "Sorry, it's just... A lot of people would say I'm being too optimistic if I admitted to that."
Ansi pats your back. "Not a fucking chance, man. Sure, Leigh's still making herself be pissed at you and Irene, and she's half a continent away, but I never once heard her say she considered you over! So this is all the more goddamn reason to put an end to all this bullshit!" Ansi's getting excited again.
>A. Get pumped!
>B. Don't get pumped.
>C. Tell Ansi to chill
>D. Write-in response
You don't get nearly as excited as Ansi. How could you?
That being said, you can't help but smile a lot and generally be at least a BIT excited.
As the sun begins to set, you're in a very good mood, even as you swear you see Heim authorities hiding all over the damn place. In fact, your mood is raised even higher, realizing that soon enough, your Wampyr will strike.
Lyeim and Irene are watching over the hand-box when you and Ansi enter.
"That's... A rescue staff, isn't it?" Irene asks as Lyeim and Ansi talk about whatever.
>A. Yeah, what about it
>C. She want it?
>D. You have an idea... (specify)
>E. Write-in response
"Why, did you want this for anything?"
"No, but... Perhaps, if she's within its range, we could use it to immediately summon Monica, and..."
The box slams into Lyeim with a loud thud before breaking on the hard floor.
Worn down to bone at the tips, the hand has also ripped through the inner box and broken its bindings, immediately grasping Lyeim's upper-chest and restoring itself to full on his flesh. Nobody wants to strike when it's attached to Lyeim, and before it kills him it wisely leaps away and scuttles deeper into the headquarters.
"Oh, no..." Irene mutters.
"Shit..!" Ansi says. "It's been breaking through that the whole time?!"
>A. Immediately give chase!
>B. Help Lyeim first
>C. Write-in response
"Don't lose sight of it!" You exclaim while tending to Lyeim.
"Everyone who can't use magic," Irene calls, "please immediately vacate headquarters! Watch all exits for a disembodied, crawling hand!"
Gonzo and Calof end up leading Lyeim out in your stead, while Sheena and Une man the doors. Asra refuses to back down, however, leaving her, Ansi, you, and Irene in the building.
You figure you need to find and destroy this thing before it can reunite with Monica now. Its usage as a hostage has just... Significantly waned.
>To be continued next thread
Thanks for playing, as always. Update twitter and ask.fm are qmgrandflocto, and I'll be around in-thread to chat for awhile.
Are the potential romancing prompts bothersome at all? I figured that it wouldn't be realistic/might seem railroadey just to never feature any chances to forego repairing things with Leigh in lieu of someone else, but also don't want to seem like I'm pushing people to choose not-her.
Thanks for running.
Romance prompts don't bug me that much, but it'd be pretty weird for one of them to win given how Lloyd's been treating the possibility of getting back with Leigh.
Yeah, I don't expect you guys to jump at any of the opportunities given at this point. Just feels right to offer them anyway with certain characters in case I'm surprised.
Certainly glad nobody's shooting for a harem ending.