>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/c99gXzkN
>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
So now you have a disembodied hand of unknown intelligence running around the lower floors of headquarters. You presume that its owner is close by, and it can still drain people through fingers.
You're not sure if Monique can actively tell what her hand is up to, but after it physically broke out of three layers of being locked up while weakened down to bone in some areas, you, Irene, and Ansi have decided that your absolute safest bet is to destroy the damn thing.
"Lady Monica is very likely somewhere in Elza Oasis," Irene explains. "There was an... Incident many years ago, when I was very young and first started studying under Mage General Corneria. War had just broken out with the Deadlord Simia, cut off part of an assassin's finger and made someone carry it in, so the barrier 'allowed' him into the city unknowingly... Actually made it to her in the Tower of Longevity." When you ask how that one ended, she responds, "he'd loaded up on Pure Waters just to resist her magic... But you know, she's actually skilled with a sword as well."
>A. That's pretty impressive
>B. Now's not the time for anecdotes
>C. And they never fixed that?!
>D. Write-in response
(sorry it took so long to post. Laptop was a freezy shit right as I finished it up)
"That's, uh... Pretty impressive."
Irene nods. "Yes, General Corneria was a great leader. It... Was barely year since the fall of Dain's empire, another war for a stupid reason had just begun, and already she'd taken a child under her wing."
If you remember the dates you read correctly, you were... An infant at the oldest when the war with Simia started. You briefly wonder how old Irene is if she was old enough a child to be under the Mage General's wing at that time, or even what age you had to be TO study under Corneria...
You don't ask, of course. You never ask a lady something like that.
That being said, thinking about age makes you realize something else disturbing. "Th-they still haven't taken out such an obvious oversight in over two decades?! Dead skin falls off of people constantly!"
"They became much more stringent about searching people for awhile and simply never disclosed how the assassin got into the city..."
"So... How fired is the official who let Lyeim and I in with Monica's hand?" Ansi asks, finally entering the conversation.
"As of when I spoke to General Yancy... Very," Irene answers. "I figure it'll be harder to just waltz into the city after this incident. Hope none of you were invested in the smuggling industry."
>A. This barrier kinda sucks
>B. Can we focus on hand-hunting
>C. Hopefully that'll be enough
>D. Smuggling industry?!
>E. Write-in response
"Think that'll be enough to curb the rare inventive soul who might try that again?"
Ansi butts in again, "alright, we've been talking about this long enough. Let's talk about something relevant if we're gonna keep shooting the shit!"
"Like?" Irene asks.
"Calof got his ass handed to him by a cat, if you didn't hear the details, before he got mind controlled. Like... A literal ordinary housecat."
"Did he describe the cat at all?" Irene asks.
"No, none," you answer. "Why, do you... Think you know who it might be?"
"It's a stretch," Irene says, "but... Esmer had a cat. He should have died of old age a very long time ago, though..."
"How old're we talking?" Ansi asks.
"Gerald was alive during the war with the Dain Empire, and by the time I actually met Esmer... He was a very old kitty."
"Never heard of a cat beating a trained merc, though," Ansi says, "maybe this one's special."
"Ask Calof after this?" You say.
"Mm." Irene nods.
Alright, no luck yet. You think you heard scuttling a couple times, but it's eluded the three of you so far.
>A. Split up!
>B. Split up 2-1 (specify who's the one)
>C. Just keep looking as a group
"Alright, we've all got powerful magic and working senses... No reason not to split up," you suggest.
Ansi and Irene agree, the former also summoning up a single Arch Mogall. "This thing's not as smart as us, but I think it'll have a bit of an edge over the hand. Don't fuck around with it, alright? Just let it do whatever it does."
Irene nods, not questioning why Ansi emphasized this. You still don't know if this Wampyr hand can hear and all, but you're certain it can see weirdly well for a damned hand.
That being said, it reminds you of that one Arch Mogall Ansi summoned up and took awhile to get rid of when he first tried to impress Jolie. You know, the one you pretty much told Yone you were more concerned about than him when it got un-summoned because of your prank on him.
>A. Pet the eyeball monster
>B. Head off towards your room
>C. Search Leigh's room for the hand
>D. Check out the dining area
>E. Search the foyer?
>F. Write-in response
"Alright," you say, "guess I'll go check out some of the... Recently-emptied rooms," you say. That being said, you are quite fond of Mogalls...
You reach your hand out to pet the eyeball monster.
Ansi screams, "Lloyd, what the fuck?!" upon noticing your actions, but he is too late to stop you, instead opting to leap back as your fingers brush against the monster...
And the damn thing literally blows up in all of your faces.
Ansi backed away quickly enough to only briefly be stunned, but you and Irene slam against opposite walls, burnt and hurting a lot.
"Y-you fucking dumbass! What part of 'leave the Mogall alone' don't you understand?! I set the damn thing to blow soon as someone touched it, figuring that the hand would want a free drink!"
"I-it's..." Irene cringes. "Lloyd, that was very foolish, but now isn't the..."
Ansi, already healing Irene, suddenly shoves her back as he notices the hand approaching. "Well, since you two are hurt, I'm gonna need to deal with this so we're not all completely fucked!"
He opens a Shine tome and starts walking towards the scuttling fingers.
>A. Try to stand up
>B. Try to get away
>C. Heal Irene
>D. Say something (specify)
>E. Write-in response
Alright, alright... You feel around for your Physic staff... There it is! Weakly waving it around in Irene's general direction, she's quick to her feet after this+Ansi's incomplete healing process.
That being said, the burnt and damaged staff crumbles apart after its very first use. There goes... However much gold that was.
Oh, hey, that is... A good amount of blood on your hands. Like, literal blood and burns and the like... These robes are ruined, but the Spirit Charmer's mark on your left arm seems completely unmarred.
Irene hurries over towards you, helping you up. "Gods, Lloyd, you're bleeding a lot..." She hands you something you can vaguely make out as a vulnerary, helping steady your hand so you can down it. Your vision clears up a bit, and you don't feel like you're literally dying. "It's... Not much, but we weren't expecting this to begin with. Gods, why did you do that?"
>A. Ansi should've been more specific!
>C. Say nothing
>D. Insist Irene help Ansi over you
>E. Write-in response
"Look Ansi should've been..." You clutch your head. "No... I messed up there. I'm sorry."
Irene sighs. "I can't stay cross with you... Ansi might have it out for you for a few days, though. Don't expect to hear the end of this."
"I'll deserve it," you say in a pained but good-natured way.
"We keep our better healing items in this storage room," Irene explains as she leads you in there and sits you down, the two of you occasionally hearing Ansi swearing or noticing bright flashes from the halls.
Finding an elixir in seconds, she hands it to you. You down it and feel immediately, immensely better, but... Still somewhat sore. Healing items work a bit differently from healing magic. You don't know the details, and the differences rarely matter, but...
"Sounds like he's having trouble connecting any hits," she remarks.
>A. Get back out there
>B. Keep resting here
>C. Ask Irene to go help him
>D. Write-in response
"Wouldn't be a sellsword if I couldn't tolerate a bit of soreness," you say, getting up slowly. "Come on, let's hurry back and help Ansi."
Irene looks concerned for a moment before agreeing.
From there, the two of you waste no time hurrying towards the site of the fight.
Irene hurries with dropping dark magic alongside Ansi's light.
>A. Make it three attackers!
>B. Try to let it get you. Make an easy target for Irene and Ansi.
>C. Your Rescue staff is unscathed...
>D. Provide commentary on what everyone else is doing
>E. Write-in action
"And it looks like... Ansi is trying again with the Light, while Irene's own magic is being broken out! Even still, they keep missing this speedy hand!"
"Did you hit your head too hard or something?" Ansi asks.
Embarrassed, you immediately stop what you're doing. "A-anyway, aim close to me when I say when!" You say, showing off your Rescue staff. "Irene gave me an idea earlier that I'm only going to modify slightly!"
The hand tries to charge you, but keeps being dissuaded by Ansi and Irene as you try to lock onto it.
The nature of Rescue staves makes it much easier to lock onto a target than most offensive magic, and as soon as the hand begins to glow, you exclaim "now!"
The hand teleports a few meters away from where it previously was, right into the center of some very unpleasant magic.
Bits of fingers burst apart and splatter against walls, one of which starts desperately, slowly crawling towards Ansi before Irene simply stomps on it.
>A. Catch your breath
>B. Leave headquarters. Now for the hand's owner
>C. Ask if this makes up for blowing you all up
>D. Write-in response
You breathe deeply, relaxing. "Good work, team!"
"Would've pulled it off way easier if you didn't blow up my brilliant scheme," Ansi remarks.
"At least we still succeeded," Irene says.
"Not without extra bruises. Still, though, keep that Rescue staff in good condition. Those are REALLY hard to come by."
"Noted," you say.
Later that evening, everyone's getting around to a rather-late dinner, the dining area's doors slam open.
Monique, looking uncharacteristically furious, ferocious, and somewhat withered, asks, "where have you put it?!"
Needless to say, everyone is silenced by the unexpected interruption, a bit speechless as she handlessly approaches Ansi.
"Thought for sure magical officers would get her," Calof says, fishing out some gold and handing it to Une.
"Put what?" Ansi asks as she storms closer. Behind Monica, you see Asra sneaking. Lyeim, sitting nearby Ansi, snickers.
"My hand! I know you two took it!" She points her arm-stubs (loosely-wrapped) at them both, barking out her words.
>A. Her hand fought valiantly!
>B. Stay silent
>C. Attack Monique yourself
>E. Write-in response
"Y-you'll be honored to know that..." You laugh a bit, "that your hand fought valiantly, died like a true hero!"
"Wh-what? You... Destroyed it?" She falls to her knees. "After... After all of this..." Tears well up in her pale eyes, before suddenly her expression steels. "No. I deserve all of this. For nearly killing Queen Eva's son, for failing in every task put out for me, for being lost in the mountains to begin with... Ymira has a fool of a servant."
"So the Chameleon's the one who put you up to this," Ansi says in a questioning manner.
"No," she says, shaking her head. "I doubt she even knows that I've left Tordo."
Ansi nods. "How interesting. Feel like elaborating a bit more? Not like you're going anywhere."
"What do you mean I'm-" Monique is interrupted by her own legs being blown off by light magic and themselves promptly vaporized.
No one ate dinner that night.
>A. That was a bit excessive
>B. Could this have waited til after dinner
>C. Yeah, it was best not to let her get away
>D. Write-in response
"That was... A bit much. I mean, I get it and I agree, but a bit much."
Monique closes her eyes as she lays against the floor, propping her head up with her forearms. "So this is it, then. All of my life has led up to laying on a floor. I... I'm told I was a knight, before I forgot. A good one, serving the king of Neir's sister. That I vanished searching for my own sister's lover."
"Uh, should we go get some magical officials to-"
Monique snaps at Lyeim's comment, "do not interrupt me!" He seems intimidated. Monica continues. "As I am now, I can't see any way to continue following my orders. Do what you will, and I will cooperate."
"So... That's a yes on my question?" Lyeim asks.
Some big and strong mages are brought in to carry her away after this.
>A. Glad that's over
>B. Almost feel bad for her
>C. Good riddance
>D. Write-in response
Yeah, she's... Been through a lot, that woman. You have to feel bad for her.
That being said, you're also really glad this part is over.
A few days later, the Mage General calls you and Irene to meet with him.
"Was a shame that someone as strong-willed as Lady Monica was turned into a pawn," General Yancy notes to your agreement. "Hearing what I have about Queen Eva herself is also... Somewhat disturbing. From what we know from both Irene here and Monica, however, this... Shadowy alliance has been formed by former supporters of prince Lars' own uprising. Princess Paula, his younger sister, and former Wulf Company member Esmer seem to at least have utmost positions of power. Queen Eva, the changeling Ymira, and the Wulf Company are certainly also involved, and if the late Lupus is any sign, the necromancer Bolse is at least worth investigating as well. And, uh... Esmer's cat, Gerald, is said to be very spry for a housecat in his thirties, assuming the cat in Ulir was him. They want various weapons of nations and regions throughout the continent, for reasons we can still only speculate about."
>A. Ask for a recap on (specify who/what)
>B. So what do we do
>C. Write-in response
>D. Be silent
Since that "weapons from various places" was a bit vaguer than intended to sound, he meant like the Galeforce Axe, Devadn Lance, Cymbeline Tome, Ronan Bow, Staff of Katri... I forget what Dain's lance was called, if I ever named it.
"If you're done repeating yourself, sir," you say, "we would like to know what you want with Marrius' Group."
"Well, beyond confirming everything Irene knows with her..." Yancy's glasses shine with reflected light. "I do have a task for your company. See, naturally Paula, Bolse, Ymira... All in hiding. I haven't a clue where the latter is, but we have reason to believe that both of the former are hiding in areas with high rates of random undead attacks."
"So... Tarvos Valley and literally anywhere in Tordo?" Irene asks.
"Precisely," Yancy says. "Though for Tordo, there is one place in particular I would recommend checking out."
"Go on, then, recommend it," you say.
"There are rumors of an... Outrealm Gate off the Northern coast of the mountainous nation."
"Wait, you mean..?"
General Yancy nods. "That's right, Irene: where the exploration party with Ellen was headed when they vanished. The place is a hotbed of undead activity, so I would absolutely be careful whichever one, or both, you went to."
Irene looks to you as though uncertain which way to handle this.
>A. Split the company up and tackle both
>B. Go to Tarvos Valley first
>C. Go to the Outrealm Gate first
>D. Try to convince Irene not to do either
"Looks like we might be able to study an Outrealm Gate up close," you say to Irene.
"Enchant me something nice and warm, would you?" She responds. You tell her to find some things she likes to wear and you'll make it happen.
"How's a rumor like that get started anyway?" You ask.
"Ellen told herself, effectively."
Yancy clears his throat. "Right, that... Wasn't entirely clear. Pretty much, a Deadlord by the name of Anguilla was created from the body of a counterpart of Ellen's. They fought each other in the final battle in Gravern Keep." He adjusts his glasses and grins a bit. "During which, if I may add, when I was captured alongside the Great Miles company, I held my own against the Deadlord Gallus for quite awhile with very much inferior armaments, pun not intended."
So you guess it's back to the mountains of Tordo once more.
At least this time you can warp there and back, once everything and everyone's ready.
>to be continued next thread
And here I was worried I wouldn't be sure where to continue the plot, get us from point A to point C. Wish I could've done Monica better, but focusing on her unless I think of some role for her to have would be distracting at this point.
Thanks for playing. As always, update twitter/ask.fm are qmgrandflocto, and I'll be around in-thread to chat for awhile.