Previous threads: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Devil%20Summoner%20London%20Quest
Character sheet: http://pastebin.com/4keHKgX4
You've been through a lot.
Not just recently, over the past weeks say, but all your life. Even from as early as you can remember, you were haunted by nightmares, memories from the end of a life you once lived. They were always a part of your life, a constant companion, until you were able to learn their true source – and by that point, you had other things to worry about. Combat and strife, horror and indecision, all those and more have haunted your steps ever since you first entered this inhuman world.
And now, perhaps, you will have the chance to move beyond it all, to reach some higher state as one of the three gods of these worlds. It's a position you've earned, but not one you can bring yourself to quite comprehend. But then, as you look around this white void at the other two girls that might become your partners in godhood, perhaps it's time to get used to the idea.
Either get used to it now, or get thrown into the deep end – but when have you ever had the chance to take things slowly?
“Mia,” Amelia says, her voice finally rising above a strained rasp. She rubs her eyes, pushes strings of lank hair away from her face and finally drops her gaze to the egg – the gathered forms of the divine fragments – you hold in your hands. “I'm... what you've been through, what you've both been through...”
“This is not the time for complaints, yes?” Petra declares, lurching over and putting a protective hand on your shoulder. Her face is crusted with dried blood, her nose twisted cruelly to the side by some unknown injury. Was Nyarlathotep fighting her as well, in whatever closed off space she had been banished to, or was there some other cause for her wounds?
“I know you've got a lot of questions,” Amelia begins carefully, a far cry from that mocking imitation that Nyarlathotep had cloaked himself in, “And I'll answer them as best I can, no matter how long it takes. What we're about to do is a serious matter – the most serious, in fact – and you can't walk into it with your eyes shut. If you have any doubts, either of you, this is the time to get them out in the open.”
Questions... Well, you can't deny that your mind is whirling with them right now, but you hold your silence and nod for Amelia to continue.
“And if either of you wants to walk away,” Amelia smiles, taking your silence as encouragement, “I won't blame you, or hold it against you. On the other hand, Mia, you're the one holding the divine power...” her smile turns rueful here, tempered with a note of vague humour, “So if you're going to tell me to go to hell, there's not much I can do about it.”
Very... honest. Swallowing hard, you prepare yourself to speak.
>What happened to both of you?
>What's it going to be like, becoming god?
>You're really prepared to share this power between us?
>I'm ready to make my decision
It was to let humanity stand on its own, to choose its own path without the manipulations of demons. We would just keep watch over it, intervening only if demons try to intervene. And maybe if things get really dire, but thats a decision they'll make as a group.
Pretty sure Mia knew that since she was talking to Nyarly about it.
I just feel that Amelia had more of a personal stake in it when she proclaimed her views and beliefs on Humanity, whereas Mia never really had time beyond "this guy is bad news, for a lot of reasons". I don't know if she ever picked a particular one to feel strongly about.
Very true, she was mostly worried about damage control. I do think she agreed with Amelia's view though, else she would have brought it up during the meetings. Girl speaks her mind.
Thinking about all this, becoming god – or something like it – is too much right now, you'd rather focus on the simple questions first. Namely – what the hell happened to both of them? They look rough, and that's coming from someone covered in a layer of filthy blood.
“It's a long story,” Amelia sighs, staring up into the “sky” above her, “I guess I fell into another one of his traps. When my time in the demon world was up, I came back here – literally here. I don't know how he did it, some little trace of power he kept hidden so he could catch me out, but Nyarlathotep was able to trap me here and cut me off. I could see everything that happened, but I couldn't do anything about it. I was... I was worried!”
Then it had been a trap from the start, you muse, and nothing you could have done would have prevented it. Almost comforting, in some perverse way. What happened, then, to Petra?
“Nothing so dramatic, yes?” the redhead forces a laugh, “You ran ahead through the fog gate, and I followed. When I got there, it was solid – like a wall of glass. I might have, ah, ran right into it. All I could do was watch as you fought him...”
Grimacing at the thought of such helplessness, you let a slow breath hiss out through your clenched teeth. If Nyarlathotep wasn't already dead, you'd kill him for that. Shaking your head – no point in wasting even a single moment on thinking about that monster now – you ask the first question that springs to mind. Will it hurt, you ask, becoming god?
“It's... certainly something you'll notice,” Amelia admits, “It's like getting into an elevator and launching yourself up into the sky. Dizzying, but... a little exhilarating at the same time. It won't hurt, but you might need a moment afterwards. To adjust, you know?”
Nodding solemnly, you decide to voice one of your biggest doubts. Now that you're standing at the end, what was the point of it all? Peace and progress? Some loftier goal, or simply protecting mankind? Just what were you fighting to achieve?
“Only you can answer that,” Amelia says slowly, “I fought to win mankind's future back from tyrannical overlords and scheming manipulators. Or maybe it was just spite that drove me, rage against a universe that only ever tried to use me and throw me away at the end of it all. Either way, I'm in this to protect the future – for everyone.”
“I was in this for the fight, nothing more,” Petra adds slowly, “At least, I thought that way at first, yes? But now, I know that I'm fighting for the people I... care about. The people that are important to me, yes? If that means making a better world, so be it.”
Both good reasons, you think with a smile, and ones worth fighting for. Maybe all this was ever about was protecting Marco – first rescuing him, and then winning back the world. Now though, a higher purpose awaits you, a purpose that you've decided on. Letting the egg drop back into your pocket, you step closer to Amelia and hug her tightly, the smell of worn leather reaching you as you hold yourself close to her. She accepts the embrace awkwardly, patting you softly on the back. You repeat the process with Petra – the redhead taking the gesture with greater ease – and then step back. It's time, you announce.
>Hand the egg over to Amelia
>Keep it for yourself – alone
>Share the power between the three of you
You're going to share it, you tell the other two, between the three of you. After all, it's been a team effort getting here – you wouldn't have the heart to snatch it away from them at the last minute.
“Glad to hear it,” Amelia says, the light humour in her voice not quite enough to hide the tremor of relief. Even now, after everything that has happened, she couldn't quite dispel that last trace of doubt and fear. Although, you have to admit, after everything that has happened, you might very well feel the same way. “I'm ready when you are,” she adds, toughening up her voice.
“Ready,” Petra confirms, a faint note of wonder beneath her forced nonchalance, “Ah, but how do we... do this?”
“Actually,” Amelia pauses, “I'm not sure.”
Following some nameless instinct, you take the divine egg and hold it out in the palm of your hand. As the three of you watch, it lifts into the air and grows, expanding until you could all comfortably lay your hands upon it without touching each other. Still obeying the silent guiding voice within you – a wordless compulsion that has swept the other two up as well – you touch the egg gently. It feels so fragile, as if the slightest pressure would shatter it like glass. On three, you murmur to the others. No, you realise later, you didn't speak aloud – your thoughts reached them without ever needing speech. Likewise, their surface thoughts drift your way as your minds brush together.
Counting down slowly, you feel your body tense up. At the count of three, you all press forwards into the egg, causing it to vanish in a shimmering mist. Shuddering and trembling with sudden force, the white void around you begins to dim. Then you feel it, like something has grabbed you and hurled you upwards, into the unknown sky – just as Amelia warned you.
You wake up, an unknown length of time later, at home. It seems perfectly natural at first – it was all a crazy fever dream, of course – and then you pause to take in your surroundings properly. You're really... at home, sitting in the darkened living room at the same table you always sit at. No, it's not the same table, and this isn't your home – but it's a fantastically similar reconstruction. This table is the biggest difference, round rather than a long rectangle. Sitting with you, looking around in equal wonder, are the other two.
Then, you murmur, this is...
“I wouldn't call it Heaven,” Amelia says, “But it's a decent word for it. This is the home of the gods. The décor has changed since I was here last, but it all seems very familiar. Bigger though – I suppose that's to be expected, if we'll be sharing it between the three of us.”
Swallowing your questions, you look down at the centre of the table, and the black mirror embedded there. A screen, you remind yourself, for looking down upon the world. Reaching out, you touch it with your fingertip, spreading ripples across the surface. A picture forms, then, of the demon world. Still buried under snow, you notice, and looking rather bleak. You'll need to sort that at some point.
Saying that feels weird, as if you can just click your fingers and do it. Maybe you can.
“So...” Petra murmurs, looking around at the room she has found herself in, “We are to... get to work, yes?”
“When you feel ready for it,” Amelia tells you both, “There's no need to jump in at the deep end right away. There are a few errands to run first, I believe.”
>Wait, why are we in my house?
>What errands are these?
>First things first, we need to fix the demon world
Wait, you say, you're still playing catch-up here. Why, exactly, are you all in your house?
“This place is... patterned after our perceptions of somewhere good and safe,” Amelia explains carefully, “In other words, it's our “happy place”, if you see what I mean. I'm a little surprised actually – I was expecting something thrown together from the desires of three different people. The fact that our thoughts overlapped to such a degree is really quite remarkable.”
Maybe it's not so surprising. After all, the times you spent together in your house as a group – as a family, almost – were almost entirely positive. Even in the difficult times, it felt like a safe place, a sanctuary almost. It stands to reason that you'd all come to the same conclusion.
“Better than my apartment, yes?” Petra jokes, her voice faint and strained. It's an off-hand comment, with most of the redhead's attention devoted to her right hand. A thing of flesh and blood again, she flexes the fingers and examines it from every angle – examining with with two human eyes. Gods, it seems, are not so easily maimed. You could probably wish away the scar across your nose if you wanted, but... well, you kind of like it. It's a good way to tell you apart from Amelia, at least.
Tearing your eyes away from the sight of Petra meticulously examining her fingers, you ask Amelia about those “errands” she mentioned. Surely fixing the damage Nyarlathotep caused is your first priority?
“Fixing the demon world is important,” Amelia agrees, “That needs to be the first things we do. Just to stop everyone from freezing to death, at least. Once that's done, we'll need to restore the human world again. Once both worlds are separate though, that's a pretty final decision. Hence, errands. Not everyone might want to return to the human world.”
She's talking about Cassandra, you suggest, isn't she?
“Not just her, but you're correct,” Amelia taps a finger on the window set into the table, zooming in on the Hellfire Club, “You might want to chat with everyone and see what they think, what they're planning on doing. If there's any other business you have in the demon world, now is probably the best time for it. You can visit again later, of course – we all can – but we might as well strike while the iron is hot. It's your call though, you're probably better off dealing with these people than I am.”
Looking down upon your friends, sitting tensely and waiting for some sign - any indication of your success or failure – you realise that Amelia is right. Cautiously opening your mind, obeying some unknown grasp of your new power, you feel out their surface thoughts. It's a curious sensation, as if things that had previously gone unknown to you were now written, plain to see, across them. With the guilty demeanour of a voyeur, you glimpse into secrets and unspoken thoughts, learning more about them than ever-
Wait. Since when was Elliot a GIRL?
“I wondered how long that would take,” Amelia says, hiding a laugh behind one hand, “Another thing you might want to discuss with, ah, them. Now, not to change the subject or anything, but I think we can relight the demon world's bonfires from here. Do you want to pop down at see how things look down there?”
Just... pop down? She makes it sound like stepping from one side of the room to the other.
“There's the door,” Amelia tells you, pointing towards something that is definitely a door, “Just picture where you want to appear and step through it.”
Huh. You should have known it would be that simple.
>Alright. I'll be off then
>I've got a few questions before I leave (write in)
>Alright. I'll be off then
"Though you might want to pop down their too and touch base with them. Just a thanks maybe, since they made this possible just as much as me and Petra did."
>Wait. Since when was Elliot a GIRL?
"How did I not pick up on that? She hides it so well. Yet some things do make a bit more sense now that I think about it."
Meanwhile Petra is probably like: 'Huh, I guess Leon isn't gay.'
>Alright. I'll be off then
Well... alright then, you announce as you get up and move over to the glowing doorway, you'll be off then. But, you add, Amelia should definitely stop by sometimes to say hello to everyone. They were just as responsible for this victory as you and Petra were – they deserve her thanks as well. Besides, you say with a smile, she really shouldn't isolate herself again. It's not healthy.
“I guess you're right,” Amelia returns your smile with a crooked one of her own, “See, that's why I wanted someone like you, to keep me honest.”
Nodding to yourself, you hold the image of the Hellfire Club in your mind and step through the doorway. There is a brief moment of disorientation – one thing you've not missed about travelling between words – before you find yourself standing in the cold air. Breathing out a great cloud of white mist, you look at the demon world around you. It all looks quite frozen.
“Ah, you can hear me, yes?” Petra's voice echoes in your ear, “She says this should be simple, just talk as normal.”
You can hear her, you reply, what was it?
“So, Ellie, yes?” Petra chuckles, “And I was thinking Leon was gay!”
She hid it pretty well, you admit graciously, but now you're wondering how you never-
Wait, Ellie and Leon? Does she mean that those two were...
“Ah, but we are getting distracted, yes?” Petra clears her throat, the sound coming through as clearly as if she was standing next to you, “Watch this.” There is a pause, and then a faint rumble – as though a giant had clicked their fingers. In the instant that follows, great blazing pyres burst into life atop every skyscraper you can see, burning away like cheerful candles. “Ah, it worked!” Petra declares, sounding just as surprised as anyone.
Was that really in doubt?
“Well, you know,” you have the mental image of Petra shrugging here, “I am not used to playing god, yes? These things still come as a surprise to me. Ah, but you have a guest. We will talk later, yes? Just think at me when you feel the need – the message will get through, somehow.”
A guest, you ask the sudden void, who?
“Me, I suppose,” the voice, quietly amused, says from behind you. Apparently, you spoke that last part aloud. Turning, you see Cassandra looking at you with curious eyes. “You still look human,” she remarks as she prowls around you, examining you from all angles, “But that's what I expected, really. Still wearing that scar – it suits you, I suppose – and looking as young as ever. Do you think you can change that whenever you like? Uh, don't try that right now though – that would be pretty weird to see.”
Cassandra, you reply calmly, it's good to see her again. Reaching out with a curious thought, you brush against her mind. There's no particular hostility in her mind, but there's a great deal of uncertainty – probably more than she realises. That's the kind of lingering doubt, you think to yourself, that caused her to change sides so easily. Could it be fixed, you wonder to yourself, amputated at the source to grant her a new confidence? Probably, and it wouldn't be too-
Bad road to start down, you tell yourself with a sudden flash of guilt. Shaking those thoughts away, you meet Cassandra's gaze and force a smile. You were hoping to speak with her, actually.
“Really?” Cassandra touches her forehead slightly, as if chasing away some phantom ache, “Go on then.”
>Are you planning on staying in the demon world?
>Are the others all inside?
>Do you think you can change that whenever you like? Uh, don't try that right now though – that would be pretty weird to see.
"It would. I figure I'll just have it so I age normally til I want to turn it off I guess."
>Are you planning on staying in the demon world?
>Are the others all inside?
>>Are you planning on staying in the demon world?
>>Are the others all inside?
Whatever decision she makes we should tell her to believe in herself. It's not much but it would be a nice gesture.
First off, you ask if the others are all inside. It would certainly be convenient, having everyone in the same place. And really, when the weather had been so bad, where else would they be?
“Yes, everyone's...” Cassandra begins, before pausing, “No, uh, that's not quite right. Joseph went out for a bit, for a walk he said. I think he was worried about you, and being stuck up inside with everyone else was just making it worse. It's strange though – he left his phone behind, said he needed the time alone. I don't think you'll have much trouble finding him though – you've probably got some kind of magic mirror you can use, right?”
Surprisingly accurate actually, you reply, but that was just a passing question – the real matter was a little more important than that. What you were really wondering, you explain, was if she was planning on staying in the demon world. You knew she wanted to help the forces of Law, and Gabriel with them, but is she really going to stay here forever?
“I think I am,” Cassandra says slowly, cautiously speaking her mind, “It sounds perverse, I know, but this place feels like my home now. I've got something here, a purpose beyond anything I had back in the human world. I mean, I don't want to sound like some gloomy misanthrope or anything – the human world is a fine place – but it's just not... right for me. Not any more.”
You can understand that. As long as she's certain that that's what she wants, you tell her, she should go for it. Just, you add, she should believe in herself and her cause, even when things get rough. If anything, the rough parts are when she'll be needed the most.
“Thanks, Mia,” Cassandra murmurs after a pause, smiling graciously, “Here's hoping for a long and beneficial relationship, then.”
Here's hoping, you agree. Now, you've got places to be...
>Track down Joseph
>Head inside and talk with someone else (Who?)
You'd better track down Joseph, you decide, before he gets himself in any trouble. Honestly, wandering off without his phone, what was he thinking? Like Cassandra said, though, you can probably find him easily enough. All you need to do is...
Closing your eyes, you find yourself back in your house. Amelia is peering intently down into the window, while Petra is lurking off in the distance, trailing the fingers of her right hand across one of the numerous bookshelves decorating the room. She shows no sign of reading any of the books, merely enjoying the sensation of the leather bindings against her bare skin. Startled, you open your eyes again and return suddenly to the demon world. Was that... was your mind split there, divided up into two places at once? You notice Cassandra looking at you funnily and wave her off with a weak smile.
Once more, as you close your eyes, you return to the house. This time, Amelia is looking at you with a crooked smile. “Strange, isn't it?” she asks, “You get used to it eventually. Anyway, I found Joseph – he's taking a little stroll, see?”
Leaning across the table, you look down into the window and see him striding through the snow. You recognise that place – he must be close to the cathedral, his old prison. As the window of perception draws further back, you spy a pair of armoured angels sitting atop the nearby roofs, keeping a watchful eye on their charge. At least he's not unguarded, you decide. Thinking briefly to yourself – he might not want to be disturbed – you close your eyes. In the demon world, you open them again to find yourself standing outside the cathedral, with Joseph looking on in confusion.
“How...” he begins.
You're kind of wondering that yourself, you admit.
“I... suppose you won,” he says slowly, frowning as he tries to put his thoughts in order, “I mean, you wouldn't be here if you lost, would you?”
And he shouldn't be here, you scold him playfully, without his phone. Sure, he's got his escorts, but they're hardly infallible.
“Escorts?” frowning again, this time in confusion, Joseph looks up and follows your pointing finger to the rooftops above. When he spots the angels, a heavy sigh escapes him. “I shouldn't be surprised, really. It's just like her to make sure I wasn't in any danger. She's... sweet like that, I suppose. I think that's why I've-”
Gabriel, you mutter to yourself, he's talking about Gabriel, right? And he's thinking about... Your eyes grow wide as the reason surfaces in his mind, carried into yours by a sudden flash of divine insight. He's fallen for her, you ask, hasn't he?
“Ah,” Joseph says flatly, looking around as if hoping for a sudden distraction – a horde of devils, perhaps, “Well, uh, yes. When you put it like that, yes. I know, I know, it's a fool's delusion – she'd never settle for someone like me. There's the age difference, for once thing. I mean, I don't mind something like that, but...”
He seems more focussed on the age difference than the fact that she's an angel. Something about that strikes you as... off. Nevertheless, you shake your head and wonder about the situation. His feelings are sincere – from what you can sense in his immediate thoughts, at least – but he's so reluctant that they'd never see the light of day.
“It's all irrelevant, anyway,” Joseph says breezily, “I'll be returning to the human world soon enough, after all... right?”
>Not if you don't want to
>You should tell Gabriel how you feel. I think she'd approve
>I think you should stay here. Law could use someone like you
>Not if you don't want to
>You should tell Gabriel how you feel. I think she'd approve
"Listen Joseph, I may not know much about this kind of thing, but we've both seen these kind of relationships work. Cass and Cu Chulainn, Titania and Carnby. If you love her and she feels the same way you should stay with her. You mentioned earlier you didn't have a place in Law. That's fine you don't need to have one, but you do have a place at her side just as Joseph you know?"
Speaking of healing, I wonder if Gabby is open to the idea of us restoring divinity to her. Problem is it wouldn't be the same YHVH divinity and I don't know if she'd be for that.
Not if he doesn't want to, you state calmly as you watch his reaction. It's hard to describe – half a slump of relief, and half a shudder of dread. One of the last excuses he was relying on, you think, has just been demolished before his very eyes. Sighing, you decide to give him a good talking to and see how that changes his attitude. He doesn't have to leave, you tell him, but he should at least tell Gabriel how he feels before making up his mind.
“You're assuming I know how I feel,” he sighs, “It's not an easy thing to put into words, you know? Or maybe you don't know, wasn't Amelia fond of talking about how she wasn't infallible?”
You're pretty sure she'd approve, you point out, so he should give it a shot. And, you remind him, you've seen this kind of relationship work before – Carnby and Titania seemed to make a good couple, and they came from very different backgrounds. Listen, you continue as Joseph remains silent, if he loves her and she accepts his feelings, he should stay with her. He mentioned earlier that he wasn't sure if he had a place in the new Law – you can't decide that for him, but maybe he doesn't need one. But maybe, you suggest, he has a place by Gabriel's side, just as himself. Think about it, at least.
“You're right,” Joseph says slowly, before nodding with a sudden burst of resolve, “Yes, you're right! I can tell her, and if she doesn't... if that happens, I can always return to the human world.”
That seems like running away from the issue, you think privately, but if the promise of escape is what it takes...
“Just, ah, give me some time to think of how to word this,” he asks with an attempt at a smile, “If I've not thought of anything by the time I've made it back, I'll just... blurt it out like an idiot.”
That'll do, you tell him with an exasperated smile, but you'll hold him to that. After all, you could always slip a little word in Gabriel's ear...
“I was wrong,” Joseph laughs, “You're not god at all, you're a devil!”
You were kidding, you promise him, you wouldn't do something like that on a whim. If he forced your hand, though...
“Alright, fine, I get your point,” shaking his head in mock despair, Joseph gives you a grudging smile, “Like I said, just give me the time to walk back to the club. I'll be ready by then... one way or another.”
It's the best you're going to get, you decide. Besides – you can't spend all day harassing Joseph, you've got other people to talk with, other plans to make. You just need to figure out where to start...
>Elliot – or whatever their real name is
You'll have a quick word with Elliot, you decide, or whatever they're calling themselves these days. Frankly, you can't imagine what they'd choose to do – stay here, in the demon world, or return to the human one? You'll make sure to ask them about it when you-
“Bloody hell!” Elliot cries as you appear in front of them, “I... what... Mia dear, you scared the life out of me!”
You're never going to get used to that. Apologising to Elliot as they pull out a handkerchief and mop up some spilled wine, you take a moment to examine their face carefully. At the same time, you tentatively probe at the boundaries of their mind, searching out a name. It's strange – the disguised girl has a mind like a fortress, utterly closed off and private.
“Have I got something on my face?” Elliot asks, “Because you seem to be studying me with rather intense eyes. I know I'm a handsome devil, but you're far too young to be...” They trail off, frowning delicately, “I suppose you've guessed then, am I correct?”
With that admission, the barred gate of her mind eases open slightly, and you take a quick glimpse within, just enough to read off a name. That's right, you tell her with a smile, Ellie.
Sighing, Ellie takes off her glasses and runs a hand through her severely cut hair, messing it up and causing a few errant locks to fall across her brow. It's a small change, but one that seems to change her face completely. Her voice, as well, is different when she speaks up – softer, without the stiff formality that she used as a shield. “I won't apologise for deceiving you,” she says quietly, “But I won't pretend to have some high and mighty reason for it. It's just... what I do. Anyway, can we move on? You're here for a reason, I'm sure.”
>No, wait, you're definitely a girl?
>Have you decided if you want to stay or not?
>So... you and Leon?
"What did you say once?"
>Imitate Elliot's voice
"I suppose some girls might find the “rough and rugged” types to be quite charming. And, I suppose, that accent could gather quite a few fans."
So, you begin with a teasing smile, her and Leon?
“Yes, what about us?” Ellie asks, weaving her slender fingers together and resting her chin on them, leaning in close to you, “Oh my, are you curious? I'm sure he'd be only too happy to tell you all the intimate details if you're THAT desperate to know. Personally, I prefer to keep my secrets – but I'm sure you've realised that by now. Is that really all you came here to ask me about? I mean, really?”
She's really getting worked up about this. Flustered, almost.
“Well?” Ellie snaps, “So what if I am?”
Clearing your throat, you drop your voice a little lower in imitation of Ellie's “masculine” voice. Some girls might find the “rough and rugged” types to be quite charming, you quote, and that accent could gather quite a few fans. Sitting back, you grin and watch as a slow flush climbs all the way to Ellie's ears. That's what she said once, you ask, isn't it?
“If you're god,” Ellie says with a great and wounded dignity, “I believe I've just discovered atheism.” Allowing the silence to draw out a moment longer, Ellie finally allows a warm smile to soften her features. “I wasn't lying though,” she admits with a coy look, “He really is quite handsome. I won't claim that it's true love or anything, but we like each other and he knows how to... well, anyway. Now that we're finished with our “Let's bully Ellie” session, can we talk about the important things?”
Fine, you sigh, has she made a decision about staying in the demon world or returning to the human world yet? There isn't much time left to make a decision, so you'll have to press her for an answer.
“I've made a decision,” Ellie nods.
Good, you reply with a smile, so what's her-
“I'm going to toss a coin,” the suited girl tells you in a serious voice.
Diarahan? I never thought a chaosfag like him would be that gentle.
Unfortunately, I work in 20 minutes, so this is where I must sign off. Thanks for the run, Moloch. It's been a hell of a ride.
>Leon knows all kinds of healing magic!
Learned it from his 'time' with Leanan Sidhe. Had to in fact.
“Oh yes, I'm deadly serious,” Ellie assures you, “Chance has brought me this far, so why not trust it a little further? Besides, it's really not a decision I was able to make – there isn't much swaying me one way or the other, and I feel like I could make something of myself which ever side of the fence I end up on. Here, I can always find some way of making myself useful – perhaps that witch friend of yours could use an assistant. If I go back to the human world, well, I'll just get a job.”
She pronounces that last word, you notice, with a certain disdain.
“Anyway,” Ellie pulls a gold coin, a bit of fairy treasure, from a pocket and shows it to you. On one side, a picture of Titania's face looks back at you. “Heads, I stay here. Tails...” Ellie turns the coin over to reveal another picture of Titania's face. “Good lord,” the girl sighs, “That woman has an ego the size of...”
Here, you say as you conjure a coin out of thin air, use this. It's a good, honest coin – a silver ten pence piece, just like the “lucky” coin she gave you once.
“Much obliged,” Ellie grins, taking the coin and walking it across her knuckles, “Heads I stay, tails I go. Here we go...” She flips it, sending the flash of silver flying into the air. As it begins to fall, Ellie snatches it out of the air and slaps it down on the table, covering it with her hand. Closing her eyes tightly, she pushes it across to you and lifts her hand.
Heads. The coin reads heads – she stays.
“Be a dear,” Ellie tells you, still keeping her eyes closed, “and call it, won't you?”
It's heads, you say, the words falling like a cold marble from your lips.
“Isn't it just?” Ellie murmurs, opening one eye to peer down at the coin, “Looks like I've made my choice. You think I'm a fool, don't you?”
Well, you admit, she could have picked a more responsible way of reaching a decision, but...
Before you can say anything more, though, you're interrupted by the clatter of a tray being dumped on the table between you – a tray weighed down with drinks. Wine – for Ellie, you assume – and a pitcher of some dark beer. Relieved of his burden, Leon sits down heavily at the table. “Got a round in,” he grunts, “Next one is one you, got it? I ain't payin' for you to-”
“Leon,” Ellie says softly, “She knows.”
“Uh?” Leon looks around at you, as if he hadn't realised you were there before now. There is a moment of silence as he squints at you – the stress of waiting having driven him to drink, apparently – before he shrugs. “It's about fuckin' time,” he says eventually, “All that sneakin' about was gettin' on my fuckin' nerves. No really my style, aye?”
So, you say awkwardly, you've heard that Ellie has decided to stay here, in the demon world. That's... definitely a thing. A thing that has just happened.
“Aye?” Leon slops a measure of beer into a glass and drinks deeply, “Suppose the weather here ain't quite as shite as it is outside, specially if you're hangin' out with your fairy friends. No change there, right?” Chuckling at his own joke, Leon punches Ellie lightly on the arm, causing the girl to wince. For such a different pair, they do have a certain... charm together.
“Leon,” Ellie says patiently, “I think she was asking what you were planning on doing.”
Right, you confirm, you've been asking around, and...
“Uh,” Leon grunts, looking down into his beer, “Stay, I guess.”
>Just like that?
>You need to think about this. I'll come back later
>Okay... I guess
Just like that, you ask, on a whim?
“Aye,” Leon sounds briefly confused, before nodding and repeating himself in a more decisive voice, “Aye, I mean, it ain't so bad here. Got it all worked out, see? I'm gonna get a big fuckin' sword, and I'm gonna be a knight. Lassies love knights, fairies love knights – so I'm gonna be a big fuckin' winner!”
“You're a fool,” Ellie murmurs, “The biggest fool I have ever met – and I've met, let me tell you, some spectacularly foolish fools.” Even as she says this, though, a smile creases her lips.
“All this fightin' shite,” Leon whispers, leaning in to grace you with his beer scented wisdom, “It's just fuckin' luck – and I've got luck on my side, right? Way I see it, nothin' is gonna go wrong!”
“Okay there,” Ellie sighs, pulling Leon back before the drunken Scot can slide completely off his seat, “You've had enough, I'm cutting you off before someone ends up with a broken nose again. Any last words, Mia, for Sir Leon of McGregor here?”
You will admit, you begin, that he seemed pretty happy in the kingdom after taking down the fortress. All those parties certainly suit him, and Ellie seems to have a few fans there as well. It's not the worst decision he could make. If he needs more time, though, you'll always be ready in case he changes his mind.
“You're a good one,” Leon mutters to you, “Fuckin' right. You gotta go though – go and find your dad. He's a good one and all, and you gotta look after him. Good dads ain't common these days, and I never...” the rest of his sentence merges together into a single mumble as he dozes off, slumping down against Ellie's supporting arm.
Good grief, you murmur, how strong was that beer?
“Hmm,” Ellie leans in, sniffing it and wincing, “Oni grade, I'd guess.”
As Ellie gives you one last apologetic look, she rises and half carries Leon away. In the silence that follows, you consider Leon's parting advice. You've still got Marco to talk to, even if you're pretty sure you know what he's going to say. It should be easy to find him, at least, with your new powers. Closing your eyes for a moment – neither Amelia nor Petra are anywhere to be seen in the brief glimpse you get – you open them to find yourself standing in an anonymous room. Marco is sitting with a heavy book in his lap, smiling curiously at you.
“This is certainly new,” he decides, slipping a bookmark into his tome and setting it aside, “Divine power, I suppose? It must make things a lot easier for you.”
It does, you agree, but you're still working out the little details. Sometimes you end up... well, that's not what you're here to talk about. You came to ask-
“I've already made up my mind,” Marco tells you gently, “I'm going back to the human world. Staying is all well and good for you young people, but I've got responsibilities back home. Besides, I'm not up for this adventuring thing. I'll be happy with a quiet life, assuming you remember to stop by every so often.”
It's as you suspected – and, honestly, something you're glad to hear. You'd be watching Marco every minute of the day if he stayed, keeping an eye out for even the slightest danger. Nodding, you promise to visit him as often as you can. Considering you've got the other two keeping an eye on things, it should be pretty often.
“I'm glad,” Marco nods, “And I know the world is in good hands – I'm very proud of you.”
>I couldn't have done it without you
>You're not even tempted to stay a little?
>I couldn't have done it without you
I'm tempted to ask him if he wants a job as the Goddess's Arcane-Tech Researcher/Scientist, but now isn't probably a good time. Maybe after everything is settled with the worlds separated again.
And yes hug our dad.
You couldn't have done it without him, you admit, you wouldn't even have made it the first day if you'd been alone. The thought of being reuniting with him – or rather, the fear of losing him...
“Hey,” Marco says lightly, trying to salvage the mood before it can die completely, “You're stronger than you think. I believe...” Stopping himself, Marco stands and puts a fatherly hand on your shoulder. “No, I know that you would have made it this far, even without me. You've got a...”
Again, he stops himself. What he doesn't say, though, he thinks. The words - “You've got a good heart” - are as clear as day in your mind, and you can't help but laugh aloud as you hug him tightly, burying your face in the sensible sweater he wears. You almost wish there was something else to say here – some assurance you could make, some promise to live up to his expectations – but you hold back. This time should be savoured, treasured, and babbling on would only spoil things.
Softly, gently, Marco prises you away from him and kneels down, looking you in the eye. “No matter what,” he tells you, “I'm glad that things worked out this way. Things haven't perfect, I'll admit that, but we made do, didn't we? And, well, we both made it through – even if you had to do... things nobody your age should have to do.”
Now who's being gloomy, you murmur, and Marco laughs. As he's rising, you feel a faint tingle on the back of your neck – Joseph, some instinct tells you, returned at last from his walk. You've got to go, you tell Marco, and maybe the next time you see him you'll bring Alice along?
“That would be...” Marco forces a brave smile, “Nice? That would be nice, yes.”
A joke, you promise him with a wink as you vanish from the room.
You appear at a discrete distance this time, lurking in the shadows as Joseph enters the Hellfire Club. Squaring his shoulders and taking a deep breath, he marches towards the bar and speaks softly to Mister Red. Nodding, the hulking bartender passes across a phone, reaching across to give Joseph an encouraging pat on the shoulder. So, he's really going to do it, huh?
As you watch, Joseph plays with his phone for a moment – Mister Red retreating to a polite distance – before pressing a bit of the screen. Appearing in a flash of white light, Gabriel takes form on the barstool beside him. She looks... concerned, but that concern is tempered with good humoured exasperation. She knows, you realise with a start, she knows exactly what Joseph is going to say to her!
...Unless he comes out with something completely stupid, you mean, but that's not the point.
Joseph clears his throat, the noise reaching you from your hiding place, and takes a deep breath to begin. His first word, a tentative pronunciation of Gabriel's name, is the only thing he can get out before the club door bangs open and an explosive bundle of energy hurries in, flopping herself down onto a table and crossing her slender legs.
“Oh, don't mind me!” Lucy announces with a certain vindictive pleasure, “Continue with your miserable lives, peasants!”
Wow, you think to yourself as Joseph – apparently – dies inside, rude. At least you were eavesdropping privately. As both you and Lucy watch the unfolding disaster – you, from your hiding spot and Lucy eating peanuts from a bowl – Joseph takes the plunge and begins speaking. Whispering, really – you can't hear a word of it. Maybe that's for the best. They talk privately, nearly silent, for a few moments before Gabriel laughs aloud, a clear and beautiful laugh utterly free from spite.
As Lucy munches on peanuts, Joseph and Gabriel practically fall into each other's arms, laughing with shared delight. A good result, you decide with a smile, exactly the kind of thing they both needed. Lucy yawns, disappointed, at the sight, but she can't quite keep a slight smile from her own face. Turning to glance your way – you might be hidden from Joseph, but not the girlish devil – Lucy winks and her voice suddenly rings out in your mind.
“Watch this,” she urges, “The best bit is about to begin.”
Best bit, you wonder, and then IT happens. Gabriel cries out in sudden pain, reeling away from Joseph and clapping her hands to her eyes. She screams again, staggering back and crashing into a table, bringing the whole lot tumbling down. Lying there, in the middle of the floor, she becomes silent.
“No!” Joseph cries out in despair, whirling around and pointing an accusing finger at Lucy, “You! What did you do?”
“Me?” Lucy giggles, “Not a thing. This is all out of MY hands. Just watch, boy, and learn.”
Slowly, like a crudely made puppet, Gabriel rises and drops her hands away from her face. Her eyes, you notice, blaze with gold light. “The veil has lifted,” she intones, in a deep and masculine voice, “I gaze once more upon this world – and I dislike what I have found.”
That's not Gabriel, you assure Joseph as you show yourself, that's not her speaking. Stopping before the hijacked Archangel, you meet that golden gaze and speak.
>Who are you?
>Release her, right now!
>You want to talk, don't you? Then we'll talk
>You want to talk, don't you? Then let's talk.
"You too Lucy, figure you're gonna want to say your piece as well."
Also backing >>45380218 for calling Petra and Amelia. we PROBABLY can take them if it's 3v2 though I wouldn't want to.
I'm trying real hard to find a tag partner for YHVH but I can't find one...
>yfw you can't do a Teddy Long as a final boss fight.
>yfw you can't litteraly pull Teddy Long to be the Tag partner.
Who, you ask with as much composure as you can scrape together, are you talking to?
“I am He who man has called the Great Will, YHVH and God,” the unseen voice rumbles, “I am the Ancient of Days, He who creates the Word and the Law – that which has been defiled and despoiled by heathens and pagans.”
Alright, you nod, that's a start. Closing your eyes for a moment – Amelia and Petra are gathered around the window, watching carefully – you call out to them. You're going to need their help pretty damn sure, you reckon. They both nod, Petra flashing you a reassuring grin. Opening your eyes again, you return your gaze to Gabriel. He wants to talk, right? So talk – what's not to like about this world? Things are getting better, people are getting happier. And Lucy, you add as you turn to the unusually serious looking girl, she should stay as well. This might involve her.
“Talk,” Gabriel thunders at you, “No, I am not He who talks – this is no debate. This is a warning. Purge thyself of all false idols, heathen priests and godless traitors, or I shall destroy thee. Else, meet Me with your strength as we shall see who is victorious, who shall inherit the mantle of Law. I wait in the North – come, child of man, and meet thy end!”
Then it's over, the colour bleeding from Gabriel's eyes. She gasps, slumping forwards and steadying herself. “I thought this day might come,” she rasps, “He has returned. Weakened, perhaps, but still a force to be reckoned with. He will destroy us all, unless we return to His ways. I don't... perhaps we don't have a choice...”
>We've got a choice. We'll take Him out
>This decision lies with Law. Will you stand up for what you've built?
>Lucy, I'm sure you're eager to say something
>This decision lies with Law. Will you stand up for what you've built?
"Remember what Joseph said, you always have a choice. You have our full support and we will assist in every way we can."
>Lucy, I'm sure you're eager to say something
>This decision lies with Law.
I don't really think we see ourselves as Gods - we're human. We don't impose our will on anyone, we just...make sure shit doesn't get beyond what we can control.
We will do our own thing, and if He wants a war, we will beat him back. If Lucy wants a war, we will beat her back. But we're not interested in conquest, nor your petty bullshit.
There's always a choice, you say quietly, before meeting Gabriel's eye. She has a choice as well – is she going to let Him take away everything that she's built? The final decision lies with the forces of Law, but you'll support her in any way you can.
“I appreciate that,” Gabriel says graciously, her voice still weak with fatigue, “I... do not wish to submit once again. Perhaps, once, I would have returned to His side, but not now – not now that I have something to protect. I will fight as best as I can, I swear it.”
Then you'll fight as well, you say firmly, you'll take Him out. You weren't going to provoke a fight, but you won't back down from one either. If He wants a war – if anyone wants a war, you add with a pointed glance at Lucy – you'll give Him one. Then, finally, you turn to look at the girl properly. She was tapping one finger on the table, eagerly waiting her turn. Fine, you snap, you're sure she has something important to say – so you'll hear it.
“Right. Shut up you lot, this is Lucifer time,” the girl declares. “You, boy,” she points at Joseph, “Forget it, you put one foot on that battlefield and you'll die. I mean it, He'll just fucking kill you with a glance.”
Wait, you pause, really?
“Really,” Lucy nods, “He can DO that, you know. He smells weakness, and you're dead. You need a certain... divine power to survive even getting near Him.” She shrugs a moment later, “I mean, your demons won't be as lucky, but hey, that's life! By my guess, he'll only be able to kill one at a time. Anyway, best of luck!”
Hell, this isn't going to be easy, is it?
“Nope,” Lucy informs you cheerfully, “C'mon, you're killing God, what did you expect?”
Sighing, you take your phone out to check your demons. They'd better be ready for-
It's dead. A dead slab of useless plastic.
>I'm gonna kill God because he's in my way!
“Oh, that,” Lucy giggles, “Didn't you know? Gods can't summon demons – there's, like, a law against it. Just a normal law, not a Law law, so you can't even break it. I guess you'll just have to ask them nicely and hope they feel like helping!”
This just gets better and better. Tentatively, you reach out with your mind, chasing down the phantom traces of what were once your demons. You feel them out there, in the indescribable ocean of data that makes up their world and, one by one, they respond to your pleas. Nadja answers without delay, pledging herself to your cause. Succubus replies with a husky laugh, agreeing as Kin-Ki raises his voice in your favour. Parvati and Cernunnos, their voices gentle and rough, swear to fight in your name. Mizuchi, always a generous god, rises to defend his worshipper. Minotaur – Marco, in all but name – doesn't even take a second to reply, swearing to defend you with his life.
“Miss popularity,” Lucy whistles, grinning at you, “Why, you might actually win this. I'm rooting for you, of course – the big guy could do with someone taking you down a peg.”
She shouldn't push her luck, you add politely, in case she ends up next on the list.
>Well, I'd better go and... kill God, I guess
>Gabriel, you could come along if you like
>I'm sorry, but I've changed my mind. This is too much for me
>Well.. I'd better go kill god.
No Gabriel. If she dies, we lose hold of light law. He may even try to puppet her. This is diety versus diety rumble to the death. Ohhh if only Nyarthy would come in to help us kill god for shits and giggles.
>mfw I finally catch up and it's the last thread.
>Well, I'd better go and... kill God, I guess
>Gabriel, you could come along if you like
Gabriel, you say carefully, she could come along if she likes. You can't be absolutely certain that He wouldn't be able to control her, or at least exert some influence over her, but you'd welcome the help. That said, she'd need to leave Joseph's service for a while...
“I'll allow it,” Joseph says quietly, “I'll release you from my service, if it will help – just give the word.”
Gabriel closes her eyes and takes a breath, before opening them once more. For a moment, you fear the return of that gold light, but her eyes are the same as always, cool and calm. She nods once, decisively, and lets out the held breath. “I will resist Him as best I can,” she promises you, “But it could be that I won't be able to fight as effectively as I would normally. If this is acceptable, I would be happy to accompany you.”
Acceptable, you agree. Now than, you say to yourself, you'd better go and get this over with. Joseph wishes you good luck one last time as you're leaving – Lucy gives you a poisonous wave – and you walk from the club. Outside, Amelia and Petra are waiting for you. You give them a cautious smile as you join them, one that the other two return with varying degrees of enthusiasm. This is kind of a big deal, you begin, isn't it?
“The biggest,” Amelia agrees, “But I've got to admit, I was a little disappointed I never got a chance to take a swing at Him. I guess I finally got my chance, huh?”
The smell of brimstone fills the air as a great devil takes shape beside Amelia, an armoured figure that you immediately recognise as Eligor. “We must hurry,” the knight rumbles, his voice as hard as granite, “The great enemy awaits us.”
That he does.
Together, as a ragtag team of demons and misfits, you head North. The further you go, the brighter the sky gets. It might be bright, bursting with sunlight, but the cold remains absolute – the snow underfoot, frozen hard. Crunching onwards, you begin to hear a heavenly chant – bodiless voices raised in praise of their tyrant, and pledging damnation upon you and your allies. A menacing soundtrack to your journey, but one that feels appropriate somehow.
Drawing closer, you finally see it – the Ancient of Days. Not a human form at all, but a clanking machine crafted from the same metal as Metatron's gilded armour. Resplendent, glorious and utterly terrifying, you can barely move for the fear of God that strikes you. Then, at your brow, Maya's black mask grows hot and the sensation passes. What you see, then, as the illusion is banished is... less than you first thought. It's rusted and corroded, leaking steam at various points.
For a God without faith, not everything is going to plan. It's... weakened. Desperate, almost – but still dangerous enough. This isn't going to be easy, no matter how degraded it might be.
>Please choose your demons. Each character can summon 2, and Gabriel will fight on her own
>Gabriel can also be ordered, and assigned to healing duty
>Characters can fight, but it's a great risk
Mia - Nadja - Cern
Amelia - Eligor - Gurr
Petra - Dullahan - Vivian
Gabriel on medic duty.
If it is still and option have Mia Debilitate and Luster Candy.
Characters hold off for now.
Rolled 57, 132, 3, 9, 44, 37 = 282 (6d150)
Staring at the corroded behemoth before you, that monster of God, you grit your teeth and throw your scarf out into the wind. You don't care if it looks silly, edgy or whatever – it finally feels appropriate, right for the occasion. Clenching your fists, dimly aware of what terrible devil's hide was used to craft those gloves, you activate their magic and call out to your demons. Without recourse to your a phone or device, you call them, raising your voice to summon them.
Nadja, your very first companion, and Cernunnos answer your call. Eligor, already by Amelia's side, is joined by a rotting, winged creature. Gurr, some voice in the back of your mind whispers. Petra calls to Dullahan, the armoured figure matching her boastful pose, while Vivian rises up on a cushion of chill water.
“Bring your weak unto me!” the Ancient of Days roars, “Let them be dashed across the rocks, let them be burned as sacrifice! I will break them!”
“I will not crack,” Amelia says softly, almost to herself.
>Please roll 6D120, for Nadja, Cernunnos, Eligor, Gurr, Dullahan and Vivian. I'll take the highest of the first three!
>Also a 6D10 dodge roll, aiming to beat 8.
Rolled 57, 49, 111, 85, 50, 36 = 388 (6d120)
Rolled 114, 15, 43, 31, 36, 79 = 318 (6d120)
First of two...
>“I will not crack,” Amelia says softly, almost to herself.
As the Ancient of Days grinds into life, gears turning and rusted metal shrieking into motion, Nadja thrusts her hands out and yells. It's a wordless cry of triumph, of exhilaration and the thrill of battle. Joy, even, at the act of fighting the ultimate enemy. Bones rattle as her necklace glows a brilliant white, lancing out a beam of lashing lightning that scours the Ancient of Days, sparks flashing and exploding from the old metal.
Matching the fairy child's shout, Cernunnos beats his chest and howls, even as a terrible light forms above his head. The singing, that awful singing, grows to a peak as the horned god hurls himself to the side, a great explosion tearing apart the ground that he once stood on. A good dodge, but it took all his effort to do so. While the Ancient's attention is focussed on the pagan god, Eligor lowers his lance and charges. The hell-forged weapon strikes one of the low orbs hanging from the Ancient and punctures it, tearing open a terrible exit wound and spilling forth cogs, pieces of shattered machinery.
Gurr, that leprous beast, shrieks and attacks from above, snatching one of the trumpets from the Ancient's grasp and crushing it like cheap tin. The discordant wail fades a little, to your great relief. Compared with this savage, chaotic attack, Dullahan's strike looks unimpressive, but it's a blow nonetheless, tearing into the open wound. Vivian strikes last of all, coating the Ancient in a skin of crackling frost.
A strong start, you think to yourself with glee.
“Weak,” the Ancient intones, one hideous face turning to stare at Dullahan. There is a sudden crack of blinding power, and the armoured demon is just... gone.
“Cheating!” Petra shouts, as she calls up her next demon.
>Summon what demon?
Rolled 74, 25, 47, 89, 4, 26 = 265 (6d150)
>That's right actually!
>In that case, please roll 6D120, for Nadja, Cernunnos, Eligor, Gurr, Berserker and Vivian. Best of the first three, again
>And a 6D10 dodge roll, still aiming to beat 8
>Just her own, for now.
Got to wonder if Nadja is immune to that effect since she took in that divine energy. Either way, this fight is going to be hairy. Berserker may be the best option if she can only draw her own.
Rolled 85, 23, 34, 30, 10, 26 = 208 (6d120)
Rolled 3, 10, 4, 5, 1, 3 = 26 (6d10)
One more God rejected?
Not just rejected.
Slain by us, for we are much superior in terms of strength and intellect!
Rolled 45, 121, 135, 46, 17, 92 = 456 (6d150)
Keep it up, you snarl to Nadja as the little fairy calls greater power into her jangling bone necklace. As you're cheering her on, she punches the ground, sending a ripple of lighting through the earth. Snow melts in hissing trails as the power snakes through the ground, lashing up like grasping tentacles once it reaches the Ancient. Metal glows white hot as the lightning grasps it, seams bursting and exploding. Heedless of the hot metal, Cernunnos grasps one of those rent seams and pulls, tearing the flap wider still and spewing forth thick oil.
Wheeling around his hellish steed, Eligor kicks into a charge and plunges his lance into a new target, ripping metal apart like paper. This time, his lance catches the central orb and cuts a slim line through it, spilling out holy water. Gurr swoops, but a white beam of almighty power catches it in mid air and slices it in half, shedding filthy blood onto the snow.
As Amelia curses, a familiar white bird swooping down to replace Gurr, Berserker charges across the open ground and swings his crude blade. With a crash of metal, it strikes one of the cherub idols attached to the Ancient's body, shearing the whole thing off. Vivian pauses a moment before choosing her moment to strike, freezing that trickle of holy water into glittering crystal. It doesn't seem to damage the thing, but that orb looks vulnerable – easily shattered by a precise blow.
>Please roll 6D120, for Nadja, Cernunnos, Eligor, Hresvelgr, Berserker and Vivian. I'll take the highest of the first three!
>And a 6D10 dodge roll, aiming to beat 8. Just one roll for this one!
Rolled 95, 44, 35, 47, 63, 35 = 319 (6d120)
I'm sorry for cockblocking that.
95, 67, 89, 80, 80, 65
Eligor, Cern, and Vivian all get it.
We are going to need reinforcements for Amelia and Petra soon. In retrospect we should have asked the rest of the gang to release their demons for us.
Nah just one chance. Its largely insurance.
An uneasy feeling blossoms at the base of your spine as Eligor charges once more. It's too early, you murmur, the Ancient isn't off guard yet. This murmur raises to a shout as a blinding beam rips out of one of the Ancient's trumpets, stitching a wavering line across the ground that follows Eligor's charge. The knight sees this at the same time you do and tries to wrench around his horse, but it's too late. The ground explodes under him, throwing him off his horse and casting him to the blasted earth. Fire washes over his armour as he laughs – laughs! - and loses cohesion. Death in battle, it seems, is no tragic fate.
An errant part of that explosion also clips Cernunnos, knocking the hunter god down and turning his arm to smoking ash. Growling with rage and pain, he rises from the snow and seizes his spear – somehow intact – in his left arm. Wounded, but not dead yet. The divine laser finally ends its terrible journey by sweeping across Vivian, bisecting the graceful demon in an instant. Not good, not at all good.
“Mia!” Petra shouts, “We need to share, yes?”
Right, you reply. Shuddering slightly, you feel a kind of groping inside your mind as Petra and Amelia dip into the power you share – a feat only possible, you realise, because of the link between you. Ignoring it as best you can, you urge Nadja on. Whooping and cheering, she lashes out with a whip of lightning, blackening the metal it touches and causing the Ancient to lurch down, brushing into the snow. Hresvelgr swoops down from the other side, talons raking into the Ancient and lifting it partially up into the air. Exposing it, you realise, to Berserker's deadly blade.
>Amelia and Petra can now draw from Mia's pool of demons.
>Cernunnos will make his next attack at -30
A single swing is all it takes to shatter that great frozen orb beneath the Ancient of Days, blasting it apart in a shower of broken glass and ice crystals. At that blow, a great wail of dissonant sound erupts from the Ancient and it seems to... wilt. Something has changed, you realise, with that decisive blow. It might have torn through your team, but you're pushing it back. You're beating it!
Too early to lower your guard, you remind yourself, and you've not got an unlimited supply of demons. Better to rearrange your party now, while the Ancient of Days is recovering from the blow you struck. You've got a window to heal, as well, if need be.
>What are your next moves?
Rolled 6, 138, 98, 30, 15, 5 = 292 (6d150)
The squirming in your mind grows worse for a moment as Petra and Amelia draw upon the demons waiting your command. Laughing with a kind of disbelief – tempered with nostalgia – Amelia calls up Minotaur, slapping the hulking brute on the arm in a friendly way. Petra summons Mizuchi, the glittering snake spewing forth a thick cloud of smog that shrouds the Ancient of Days and dulls its senses.
Good. At least you'll be able to dodge a little easier now. Cernunnos falls back, limping and dragging his feet slightly, and allows Gabriel to lay her hands upon him. With a glow of white light, his arm rebuilds itself from the bone, flesh springing into existence before your very eyes. Kind of gross to look at, but you're glad to see him back in the fight. Before the wound can be completely healed, Cernunnos has grasped his spear once more and charges into the fray.
Gabriel, retreating to the sidelines, sighs.
>Please roll 6D120, for Nadja, Cernunnos, Minotaur, Hresvelgr, Mizuchi and Berserker. I'll take the highest of the first three, but Cernunnos will be at -10 for this!
>Also a 6D10 dodge roll, aiming to beat 7 this time.
Whelp, it was a nice ride while it lasted.
Slicing through the fog like a hot knife through butter, that terrible white laser flashes out and draws a blackened line across Cernunnos' chest. Stopping in the middle of his charge, a gasp of evaporated blood puffing out from beneath that mask of bone, Cernunnos folds to the side and collapses, his physical form unravelling with each passing second. Come on, you hiss as Nadja gathers her power, come on!
She doesn't disappoint. Throwing out another whip of lightning, she tests her divinity against that of the Ancient of Days. That older, pagan power wins out as she shears away a great cherub idol, casting it down and shattering it upon the ground. Mizuchi is the next one to strike, turning the vaporous cloud into a deathly freeze in an instant. Chilling the metal to a brittle finish, the Ancient is helpless against Berserker's heavy strikes, blow after blow deforming the godly machine. The violence only intensifies as Hresvelgr descends, seizing the great golden arch atop the Ancient and tearing, lifting it up and almost flipping the thing over.
Minotaur, stomping close, is the one to flip it completely. Grunting, his muscles burning with strength, he lifts the Ancient up and flings it, charging into the flying machine and pounding it with repeated blows. Finally exposed, you see a flash of something gold. Behind a shield of wings – soon torn aside by Minotaur's furious attack – a simple gold cross rests. As he reaches out to shatter it, Minotaur rears back with a shout of pain.
“I cannot!” he bellows, “I can't touch it!”
That's it's heart, you realise with a flash of intuition, that's how to kill the thing. But if he can't even touch it...
>Please choose a course of action
Clenching your fists, you ask Petra for your pistol. If your demons can't get close to it, you'll shoot it from afar. If that doesn't work, you'll... you'll...
Well, you'll think of something.
The cold metal of the gun weighs down your hand as Petra turns the weapon over, a reassuring weight that you've come to miss, even in the short time she possessed the weapon. Twisting the barrel until all the feathers have been retracted, you approach the upended deity and point the pistol at it, aiming for the centre of that golden cross. The breath catches in your throat as you pull the trigger, sending a single bullet plunging into the heart. It shatters in an instant, the broken shards blackening and corroding as they scatter. It's a wave of corrosion that is soon mirrored by the Ancient of Days itself, the entire metal frame crumbling as it dies.
Jackpot, you murmur as you lower the gun, a wisp of smoke curling up from the barrel.
“That's it, yes?” Petra asks slowly, approaching to stand by your side.
That's it, you repeat, following some unspoken certainty. You've been put to the test, and the old Laws have broken first. The mantle of leadership lies in Gabriel's hands now – and you're confident she can live up to that opportunity.
“Please,” Gabriel whispers, her face pale and drawn, “Let us return. I have grown tired, and I need to rest. Fighting off His influences was harder than I expected – it was all I could do to avoid attacking you.”
“Gabriel's right,” Amelia says slowly, “Let's all go home. I mean it – home. We've got to separate the worlds again, and then...”
“And then we'll be finished here,” Amelia shrugs, “The end. Game over. That's all folks.”
Not yet, you reply, you've got your goodbyes to say first.
When Gabriel arrives at the Hellfire Club, she is met with a cheerful reception. Joseph hurries to take her in a warm embrace, supporting her as she wilts into his arms – a situation he looks, overall, quite happy with. Cassandra lingers by the sidelines, watching them with a hint of approval in her eyes, and a now-familiar crooked smile upon her lips. You never quite liked that smile, you realise suddenly, or the cynicism it suggested.
The three disciples of Law speak quietly amongst themselves for a moment before Gabriel allows Joseph to help her away. Cassandra then approaches you, her gaze switching between the three of you.
“I suppose congratulations are in order,” she says, “There's still work to be done here, of course, but at least we won't need to be looking over our shoulders all the time. Gabriel will recover soon, I believe. You'll have to come visit us soon,” she smiles – a natural, almost shy smile – and offers Amelia her hand, “Come and see the good we're doing.”
“I'll do that,” Amelia promises solemnly, “And... thank you. For everything you've done, and everything you'll go on to do. Thank you.”
“You're welcome,” Cassandra's expression darkens slightly, “But... you're not sticking around very long, are you?”
“Can't. We've left the world unguarded for long enough,” a trace of humour enters Amelia's voice, “Something bad could happen, you know?”
Come on, you protest, what's the worst that could happen? Nadja goes nuts and takes over the world? You all share a laugh at that notion, before the laughter grows nervous and dies off. Maybe, you suggest, maybe you should get back to work...
“Perhaps you are right,” Petra nods. Together, after one last round of goodbyes – and a reminder to visit often - you leave the Hellfire Club together.
“So,” Amelia says as you appear within your new home, “Let's get to work...”
>Nadja goes nuts and takes over the world?
You just had to say that, huh.
Your name is Marco Vespucci, and you've just woken up in your bed at home. Where else, after all, would you wake up? You remember everything, but the memories are... comforting, robbed of their threat and fear. In fact, the overwhelming emotion is one of comfort – safety, knowing that you are being watched over by the one person in the world that you trust above all others. With that thought in mind, you settle back down in bed and smile. You've earned a long lie today.
Your name is Cassandra Einhart, and you've got a busy day ahead of you. A busy life, in fact. You remember the mocking wink Lucy threw your way as she sauntered from the Hellfire Club, a reminder that she'll be challenging you soon enough. You'll worry about that when it happens though – you've got things to organise. A devilish club, after all, is no place for God's chosen servants.
Your name is Ellie Cosgrove, and you've finally found a reason to stay honest. Mostly honest, at least. Sitting up in bed, admiring your slender body for the first time in what seems like years, you wonder how much it would cost to tailor some new shirts – ones that don't hide your body. The soft snoring from beside you is a comfort, and the man that makes those noises an even greater one.
Your name is Leon McGregor, and you're having pleasant dreams. No more visions of violence, thoughts of wrath or rage. Instead, you can think of the friends you've made – the lover you've taken. It's not much, but it's the most you've ever had – all you've ever wanted. The future is a blank, an unknown, and that's okay with you. You're going to be okay.
Your name is Joseph Johanssonn, and you're the luckiest man in both worlds. You sit, feeling sleep nagging at your mind, and watch as Gabriel's chest rises and falls with her steady breathing. You don't know what you believe in any more, but that's okay – as long as you're by her side.
All these lives, lived within worlds kept under careful, cautious guard.
>This has been Devil Summoner: London and Devil Summoner: New Cycle Quest. I hope everyone enjoyed it, and I'd like to thank everyone who contributed to these threads. I've had a lot of fun writing this, and I look forwards to producing more material in the future!
>I'll stick around for a while, as well, in case of any questions or comments. Thanks again for everyone and everything!
What was the last words of London quest? (Omitting the sequel bait epilogue)
>This is your world. A world where everyone gets a happy ending.
Hah, it took awhile but Amelia's vision finally came true.
Thanks for the fantastic quests over this half a year Moloch. It's been a lot of fun.
Did Amelia and Petra have their talk? If so, what happened?
I wasn't here for the first cycle, but I was here for the second. Fun note: the 1st cycle was the 2nd quest I've ever read. So I'm really excited for what you got next coming up. Three cheers for Moloch!
Gabriel was a little too tired for anything like that, but it's all early days yet! Her wings are something that fell through the cracks a little, actually, as I never got round to raising the issue. However, with the Great Will undone, his curse will also fade with time. Her wounds will heal, in the short term, and anything could happen in the future!
Thank you, I'm very happy about how this whole thing turned out!
>Did Amelia and Petra have their talk? If so, what happened?
They had A talk - nothing conclusive, but nothing particularly bad. Their final decision is going to be left deliberately vague!
I'm quite excited about what's coming. Watch this space!
>Their final decision is going to be left deliberately vague!
Ha, alright then.
How's Lucifer doing? Like going against YHVH was his main thing. Now that his arch nemesis is dead is he just going to skirmish with Gabby's Law just cause?
Did the demons who fought for us freely that died perma die or will they be back? Will they remember what happened? I assume that despite kicking in YHVH's face Eligor lost his spot in Hell.
Let's just say I'm leaving it up to personal interpretation!
Lucifer is pretty cheerful about what happened, and what lies ahead. Their main reason for being is to oppose Law, so they're going to continue doing that for the foreseeable future. Until they get a better reason, in other words!
They will reform, with their memories intact, but it'll take a lot longer than if they were in our party. Eligor isn't really high ranking in Hell any more, but he's seen as a pretty big deal by pretty much everyone - angel and devil!
Thanks for the ride, Moloch. Looking forward to whatever you come up with next.
Overall, the three enjoy their life. Being able to talk among themselves and visit both the demon and human worlds does wonders for their mood. In time, they generally sort into shifts and various jobs, handling the various tasks that Amelia, on her own, would have done without really thinking about.
Petra, for example, takes an interest in recording the history of the world, while Mia keeps Amelia honest. Amelia herself even visits the fairy kingdom on occasion!
Thanks for reading along. I've got my next project coming really quite soon!
>A devilish club, after all, is no place for God's chosen servants.
Cass I hate to break it you, but we just killed Him like 10 minutes ago. And He didn't exactly choose you either. You guys are less God's servants and more a faction of good and understanding.
I like to keep busy. I actually started collecting art assets, taking notes and working out plot seeds a few weeks ago. Got a few things to finish up though.
Cass has a few funny ideas about things. She sees Law as the "true" servants of God - the God she thinks should exist, or once existed. Not exactly orthodox, but it's not caused a religious schism yet!
None yet, but Titania is looking a little wider than we last saw her!
>Occurs several years EARLIER
>Elder Gods messing everything up and sharing forbidden knowledge
>Marco, Carnby, and Amelia's Mom as early 20's and painfully weird memories.
>They summon personas.
Marco's is Marcotaur.
>Amelia and Mia feel REALLY awkward ordering them around to do ANYTHING, and the main party has to beg them for stuff to do
I'm worried by how tempting this idea is.
She made sure the message got out. I wouldn't say the whole demon world was holding their breath - not everyone quite realized how serious the situation was - but there were a lot of interested, and worried, demons out there!
She didn't really "evolve" into a new demon. She gained more power, and took on a slightly more mature look - less childish, in other words - but she remained an Undine type demon. At least, that's the closest thing she could be categorised as.
>She calls me by my name, and that SHOULD be perfectly normal. So why does it feel like there's so much weight behind it when she does?
>Why is Minotaur sniggering?
Elder Gods are acting due to the empty slot left by Nyarly. They plot to fill it with an altered Nadja
>Both Carby and Marco are tempted to make summoning programs to get past the 1 demon limit, but are at odds on what to use it for afterwards
>DSP is made, and
angelic faestart appearing here and there
Honestly? I'm not ruling it out. I'd need to thrash out some ideas for events and an overarching plot, as well as work on the various Persona equivalents, but it IS something I'd like to try. The main problem is deciding when to do it - I feel like it might not work if I waited too long, but there are other ideas I'd like to get through first.
Then again, everything is archived, so catching up isn't impossible. Watch this space!
Interesting ideas - noted for potential future use!
>Occurs far in the future where the world is about experience its natural end.
>Goddesses gather a task force of soldiers and other persons of interest to prepare them for the World of Transition.
>Equip them with Demonica's, improved Demon Summoning Apps and brief them on what to expect weeks before the world ends.
>People wonder why this one Goddess is wearing a leather jacket that went out of style hundreds of years ago. >Soldiers secretly argue over which Goddess they'd waifu
>Properly trained, organized, and briefed humans 'beat' the World of Transition within a day or so.
>Final boss is actually
Lucy, with a mocking version of a persona: Satan. Then, because Lucy knows they already beat Great Will, he/she brings backup: Alice, the REAL one.
There was a good amount of Persona 2 in these couple of quests. What with Nyarly and the two worlds in where people remember their past lives.
Amelia's Innocent Sins but thankfully avoided the Eternal Punishment.
Well, Lucy has avoided most of the trouble these past two times, it would serve them right to get a good kicking!
That almost seems like cheating, or starting a new game plus. Too easy!
I did take a certain amount of inspiration from Persona 2, even if I've never had the chance to finish the duology. If I was going to delve deeper into the Persons style, I'd like to explore Persona 1 a little more. It would probably be set in a university though, with the characters as students. I'd probably steer clear of the social link stuff though - I'm not sure how best to use it!
>That almost seems like cheating, or starting a new game plus. Too easy!
I know, but you know Mia, Amelia, and Petra would totally do that given any preparation time. They are smart girls.
Hell I bet the three will already have a perfected DSP that comes a long with a Repository with most demon's strengths and weaknesses within a century or so, specially if they have Carnby's help.
They make it and have it in storage in case they have to arm humans for something.
>One shot quest where you gun down demons with your magic AR and power armour
Could be pretty funny, actually!
I wouldn't be too surprised if they started feeding Marco information, or passing messages between him and Carnby at the first sign of trouble, just in case things got serious. Every advantage helps!
>Could be pretty funny, actually!
>Squad walks past Hyde Park.
>Voice from the DSP chimes in.
>"And to your right you have the Fairy Kingdom! You are off duty and need a drink please stop by. Also say hi to Master Carnby, the one who made this unit."
>Drinking in the fairy kingdom
But they'd never manage to leave! You'd end up getting drunk and waking up naked, with a swarm of Pixies taking your power armour for a walk.
The Hangover: Devil Summoner Edition?
Lord help them if Scathach or Morrigan was in the mood, they'd have trouble walking.
Of course there's the hellfire club to go through AND whatever bar Cass is setting up for competition.
>whatever bar Cass is setting up for competition.
I can see it.
>The Hangover: Devil Summoner Edition?
Try to recover all your gear from the mischievous Pixies before your squad moves out to take Cornerstone Bravo.
>Soldiers secretly argue over which Goddess they'd waifu
I could totally see that.
>"Redheads are the best man."
>"Mia is the only one that's approachable of the three. And that scar..."
>"Mate, how do you not like that scowl. Cute as fuck."
>Wake up with Lucifer smoking a cig beside you
I'd ask how terrible your soldiers would have to be for a mob of Pixies to be more efficient, but the rest of this conversation thread is giving me a fair amount of insight!
She's a god, not your waifu!
Forneus. When will he learn?
I suppose you could argue that any waifu is a goddess, if you pray hard enough. I could imagine Mia or Amelia getting a little freaked out though!
Moloch, in six and a half months you've taken us on a wild ride through demons, magic, tactics, betrayal, and everything that goes along with taking things into your own hands and telling anyone who doesn't like it to fuck off.
You were just a no-name QM who through a complete knowledge of your subject matter, solid writing style, and knack for the right joke at the right time has made this something I look forward to every day.
I've had the idea for starting a quest for a long time, and seeing you make this happen has prompted me to put the work into pushing ahead to make it happen.
I really must thank you for your kind words, and I hope your own quest goes off as well as this one has. Is it one running already or are you working towards it?
I just hope things don't get into "kill your friends" territory!
>Not getting to take part in the pit fights
Well, I wish you the best of luck. I never set out expecting to influence anyone, so I hope it works out for you!
Thanks for sticking around, I should probably also leave. It's 2AM here!
Check back on Sunday, when I hope to have the first thread of Sleeping Gods Quest up!
Had to duck out a bit at the end due to some stuff happening on my end, but I just wanted to sign in one last time to give my own regards.
Thank you for inspiring me to start Task Force 666.
Thank you for keeping me entertained for the last month.
Thank you for being an awesome storyteller.
That's all I have to say right now, so I guess I'll see you next time, whenever that happens. Take it easy.
>I'm not much of a morning person!
That's funny cause you made me one to catch your quest. You start at 6:30 am over here on the Murrican Weat Coast. That's a good thing though, my sleep schedule is alot better.
I've got an anime convention to head to early tomorrow morning...but maybe I can do something quick. Nothing too action-heavy, mind you, but just to resolve the conflict and fighting from the last session.
Glorious Petra Master Race
I was a big Amelia fan back in London. Still am just that she is more 'attractive' when she is actually out in the field doing stuff. It was nice to see her back in action this thread.
Petra though took the overall spot for me over both Quests.