Day 68 - Day 72Where:
Everyone makes it back to the carnival after their adventure in hell. The Ringmaster makes a new lake to celebrate, apparently.Warnings:
A notable absence of torture.
|TO HELL AND BACK↴|
The rescuers and the liberated captives will emerge from the portal like bats out of hell. Much like their previous return, this arrival will be met with a flurry of medical activity as everyone gets their injuries seen to, particularly those that had been held prisoner within Morningstar's hell fortress. It will still be night when they arrive, and the rest of Day 68 will be clouded over completely, for the benefit of the new vampires as they get settled in. After the immediate panic is dealt with, the Ringmaster will disappear into the forest until the morning of Day 69. It will be raining off and on during her absence.
► RECOVERY: Unlike the last time, the Ringmaster will be supplying the carnival workers with some healing potions from her private hoard, given that most of the healers are already wounded or spent. Damage caused by iron poisoning will not be cured by healing magic or healing items though, unfortunately, and those who have spent a lot of time in contact with iron will take at least a week to fully recover. However, regular healing remedies like bandages and herbs may help speed things along if the patient is suited to them.
► A BRAND NEW LAKE: On the morning of Day 69, the Ringmaster will return the forest to announce that she's built a new lake into the carnival grounds, only a short trail's distance from the backyard. Unlike most of the forest, this area won't just lead you in circles when explored, meaning that it can actually be modified and developed as the workers see fit. The water is always clean and just the right temperature for swimming, though it gets a bit cooler the deeper you swim. At the far side of the lake, there is a warm, stone pathway leading up the side of the mountain, that will eventually take you to some bangin' hot springs. Brought to you mostly because the Ringmaster doesn't know how to say sorry with actual words. At least it gives you something to play with while you try to shake off the trauma.
► FRUITS OF VICTORY: On Day 70, all the workers who came to hell for the rescue mission will be given a gift from the Ringmaster. Each of them will receive a bright green, glowing seed, about the size of your thumbnail. She will tell you that, when planted, the seeds will swiftly grow into a small citrus tree, which will grow fruits with regenerative properties. More details about these plants will be written up in a separate post, but for now your characters can ogle them and decide if they are going to plant them or not.
► TAKE ME TO CHURCH: Staring on Day 71, the Ringmaster will be starting to work on removing the vampirism from those infected with it, which apparently involves a lot of... meditation? She will take the newbie vampires out into a shady area of the forest and encourage them to look inside themselves and attempt to separate themselves spiritually from their demonic beasts. How well you character masters her teachings over time will determine whether or not she is ultimately capable of stripping out your demon soul and returning you to life. Of course, not all demons are made equal, and some will be more difficult to separate than others...
- Tags:!event, amethyst, annabelle blishwick, ginko, greg universe, jamie hemeros, jimmy novak, john childermass, joker, koel babic, lambert, lapis lazuli, miko nakadai, noboru gongenzaka, papyrus, peridot, renzo shima, sans, sophie welman, susan, tallisibeth (scout)
Vampire prisoners and rescue squad.When:
Evening Day 67 - Day 68Where:
Vampire Hell What:
The rescuers go to hell. Top levels are in approximate chronological order.Warnings:
Violence, torture, tryhard demons who aren't very creative.
|RESCUE MISSION: HELL↴|
The air smolders as you travel through the star-shaped portal the Ringmaster has opened - the gateway to the hell dimension that has taken so many if you. Ahead, you can see the grand entrance to Morningstar's fortress, a single point of civilization in the center of a barren, lava drenched hellscape. Of course, you won't be entering from the front. That would be stupid.
The Ringmaster's plan is simply in explanation but far more difficult in execution. Her instructions are that she will attack the fortress directly, and that the rescue team is to enter inconspicuously and rescue who they can while she engages Morningstar. She has provided you with silver weapons - daggers, swords, and some projectiles - which you may or may not choose to use. Shedding a trail of orange and green embers, the Ringmaster will sprout her dark, feathery wings and take to the air, leaving the rescuers to contemplate their instructions now that they've arrived.
The fortress is large, and as such there are many potential side entrances to find. It will take some doing, but the group will be able to accomplish it. Meanwhile, many of the vampires within will be distracted by the Ringmaster's now very audible arrival, and don't seem to be expecting a secondary attack. The initiative is yours, and the captives are there to be found... but will you succeed?
► GATEKEEPING: For those who don't trust their mettle enough to travel all the way to hell, there is an important job to be done back at the carnival. The Ringmaster's obsidian daggers have opened a portal there, but while the rescuers enter that portal must be protected - both to keep it from collapsing and stranding everyone there, and to prevent anything demonic from escaping onto the carnival grounds and causing havoc. If you need to take it easy but still want to help, this is a good place to be. It's also a good place for nervous hand-wringing about whether any of your friends will make it back alive.
► PLAYPEN: The cavernous pits where the neonate vampires are dumped, in order to engage in a survival of the fittest style battle royale where only the strongest and most cunning will emerge. Those that were turned during the masquerade were dropped down here a couple days ago, and so someone needs to go collect them. Try not to get eaten by the hordes of other starving neonate vampires down there while you're at it. Maybe you could even try to save some of them, if any seem worth redemption.
► CAPTIVES: While the supervisors were initially all caged together in large cell surrounded with a moat of lava, it seems that most of them have now been moved elsewhere. Where they have ended up is a puzzle you'll have to solve quickly - there are plenty of vampire sentries about to try to get in your way, and some of the prisoners may already be significantly worse for wear. If anyone has any powers that help them find people, this would be the time to use them.
► MINIBOSSES: Unfortunately, the enemies here aren't only capable of damaging the body, but the mind, too. In these particular cases, that corruption of the mind has been used pointedly to Morningstar's advantage - two of the carnival's most dangerous members have now been turned against it. If you want to get out of here alive, you'll have to go through them. If you're really lucky, you'll get them out alive, too.
► BOSS FIGHT: Before the rescuers and the rescued can escape, Lord Morningstar will arrive to corner them, with an entourage of elders. Let's hope that she gloats long enough for something to turn the tables.
- Tags:!event, #ringmaster, @hell, hinawa, john childermass, joker, koel babic, lambert, lapis lazuli, papyrus, peridot, renzo shima, rin okumura, sans, steven universe, tallisibeth (scout), the psiioniic, zecora
The people who were captured or turned.When:
Very early Day 66 to Day 67Where:
Vampire Hell What:
Those that were captured by the vampires are brought back to one of their demonic home dimensions to be imprisoned or integrated into the pack. People can start moving over here as they resolve their threads at the masquerade.Warnings:
Horrible BS, most likely. Violence, sexuality, torture, etc.
|GOING TO HELL↴|
You don't get to see what the outside of the fortress looks like, since when you were brought here, it was either by portal or by a ritual summoning ring set up by the vampires. However, the realm is easy to get the gist of - it's about classically hell dimension as you can imagine. Lava runs throughout the fortress like water in Venice, and the architecture is smooth black and grey stone that puts a significant effort into looking imposing. Skulls, demons, suggestive nudity - it's all carved straight into the pillars, or provided via ornate tapestry. It's hot, too, though not as hot as it should realistically be while standing at the edge of a lava pool.
Prisoners and freshly turned vampires will end up separated - those that have been captured will be chained in iron and locked within a great stone cell within the center of a ring of lava (as pictured above), with only narrow bridges leading across it. Those that have been turned will be unceremoniously thrown into the living areas of the other neonate vampires - which turns out to be a cavernous pit of almost-rooms where a vast quantity of newly turned vampires have been left to sort themselves out.
► IMPRISONED: The supervisors (or other captives that have made themselves exceptions) will be bound with iron and left in a large cell kept separate from the rest of the prison. At first, they'll all be locked in there together - spread around the walls of the dungeon to be kept apart from each other, but able to communicate across the gap. As time goes on, they may be pulled away for "special treatment" - whatever cruel fate the vampires end up having in mind for them, whether that be interrogation, brainwashing, or simply aimless torment. Sometimes they'll be brought back, and other times they won't. How exactly they are bound is up to you, but at the very least each prisoner should have either a collar or shackles of iron, which will rob veteran characters of most of their powers. It will be extremely uncomfortable, too.
► FORSAKEN: The newly turned vampires will be introduced to their "hazing" almost immediately - that is, they'll be mixed in with the other neonates, apparently collected from at least three different words. Most of them appear human, however, so the looks of the new arrivals may set them apart - potential in ways that may cause them difficulties. These young vampires have been dumped into a series of caverns and left to live with each other, with animals or human victims occasionally tossed in for them to feed. There is not enough blood to go around, ultimately, and the human victims are highly preferred over the animals - these means there is constant and violent competition over who gets to feed. The ideal is for the neonates to thin their own ranks, allowing the strongest and most canny to survive long enough to be accepted into the rest of the clan. You'll want to stick together - after all, vampires can feed off of each other, as well.
► MORNINGSTAR: Apparently the demon in charge of this all is a creature that calls herself "Morningstar." You won't see her long if you see her at all - the only sight of her you see is a form within a black cultist's robe, with their face concealed in shadow. Beyond her, you can continue using adult or neonates vampire NPCS to torment your characters, or ask the mods for the presence of an elder, if needed.
Whatever scheme is going on here, it's clear you're just another pawn.
- Tags:!event, @hell, foster van denend, gongenzaka, hinawa, jamie hemeros, joker, koel babic, miko nakadai, mutou yuugi, peridot, sans, snake, sora
Peridot and Lapis, Peridot and YOU, Lapis Lazuli and YOU, or, you AND Peridot AND Lapis! Now featuring Pumpkin.What:
Peridot called in a favor from the Ringmaster and got her vegetable dog back! Also, Lapis brought home a gross skeleton and a weird sword, and you can see it outside their trailer.When:
The night the carnival leaves Atlantis and onWhere:
The supervisor's grove, and around the Carnival in generalA. CLOSED TO LAPIS
"Look on the bright side Lapis! We match now!"
This would be Peridot's attempt at reassuring her roommate that the changes which she has retained, following two weeks of being underwater, could be a whole lot worse. They are blessedly walking
(instead of swimming) back to their trailer in the supervisor's grove, and Peridot is pointing at her mouth and flashing a sharp-toothed grin. ( Read more... )
Anyone who wants to pick on Tamatoa.When:
Day 45 onward.Where:
In and around Tamatoa's lair.What:
People getting up into Tamatoa's grill for some reason or another. Anybody is welcome to participate, but please communicate with the mods first so that we can discuss how to set up the thread and what your characters are attempting. Tamatoa may attack people outside of his lair, too, but you'll need some kind of narrative hook to prevent him from just eating you if you want to engage him that way.Warnings:
Crab related violence.
Tamatoa lives in a giant clam shell, inside of a mysterious cave that lies about a half hour's swim away from the city. This is also where he keeps most of his loot - either stashed somewhere in the lair or (mostly) sitting on the back of his shell. He hangs out in this cave most of the time he isn't stomping around looking for sunken ships.
Tamatoa is gigantic. In fact, he's even a bit more gigantic than he appeared in the movie Moana - and those combating him will find that he also seems to be somewhat resistant to magical affects. A human is the relative size of a pen cap in his claws, and he could crush a normal person will trivial effort. He could also pretty easily toss them into his giant mouth - which he usually will, given the opportunity.
Facing Tamatoa could come with great reward, but with equally high risk.
The morning of D44 and onward.Where:
The ocean realm of Atlantis.What:
The carnival abruptly arrives at an underwater realm, and everyone is transfigured into merpeople just as suddenly.Warnings:
Body horror, I guess.
|THE CITY OF ATLANTIS↴|
The visit starts without much warning, but at least there is a full week of free time before performances start. In the meantime, your characters will be given ample opportunity to adjust their acts for an underwater audience, get used to their new fishy appendages, or just spend the whole time enjoying the sights and sounds of Atlantis city. King Triton will not be immediately seen, but it's possible to gain an audience with him if you get in contact with the ambassadors of the kingdom. Just, make sure that you're not wasting his time. He's a lot less patient with nonsense than the Ringmaster is.
► FISH FRIDAY: You fell asleep, whether or not that's something you usually do, and the next morning you wake up as one of the merfolk. A few last additions may grow in after you're awake, but for the most part everyone will have a method of swimming and a method of breathing underwater transfigured into them upon waking. Don't worry about your belongings - everything is waterproofed, and technology will work the same underwater as it does above it. That doesn't mean there won't be plenty to get used to, though.
► GREAT BLUE YONDER: The ocean realm where Atlantis resides is enormous, and the depths seem to be unending. Despite the fact that there doesn't seem to be any surface, sun glimmers all the way down to the ocean floor. Atlanteans use creatures like whales and dolphins as rides and beasts of burden, and they can be seen swimming in and out of the city as constantly as roadways filed with cars in earth civilization. Beyond that, there's everything you would expect to see on the ocean floor here - huge reefs of coral, both familiar and exotic, enormous ocean plants, deep ocean trenches, and all kinds of weird critters living in them. There are a mix of mythical and standard ocean creatures, and are likely a combined populations of many oceans worth of beings.
► THE ATLANTEAN MARKET: The Atlantean market (aka the "merket") is a long trench between rows of buildings in the middle of the city, lit with bio-luminescent plants and rocks, and filled with all kinds of weird mer stuff that you can buy. There are a great many individual booths, mostly with hand crafted wares and objects that have been salvaged from various sunken ships. The Ringmaster has already traded a large number of goods to the merfolk here, and has taken the profit to award each worker with 100 Atlantean Gold to spend as they please. One gold is worth roughly five USA dollars, for a comparison of how much that is. There is a top level set up below in which characters can make their purchases, and you can also handwave the purchase of random common, necessary items (food, drink, etc) at your convenience.
► TREASURE HUNTING: Right now, the only major salvage areas are a few left over sunken ships that have mostly been picked over by the merfolk. However, you are welcome to head over to them and explore, and see if fortune smiles on you when it comes to finding anything that hasn't been taken yet. The current options are three similar looking brigantine that all probably came from the same world. Merfolk do not seem to consider them to be anything extraordinary, though magical items and gold have allegedly been found within them. Whether or not anything is left, is the real question.
► LIMELIGHTING: Merfolk are curious and generally socially forward, as a species. This mean that they find the carnival's workers to be a fascinating novelty, and also are unafraid to make that fascination obvious. Given the opportunity, merfolk will demand your character's attention for bombardments of questions and for general socializing, especially if they are particularly unusual for some reason. Don't be surprised if you get invited to stay at total stranger's houses, or dragged off to a merfolk bar to surprise party with their friends. They'll let you say no, reluctantly, but they will also be pleased as punch to get up in your gill.
It's also possible to make some money, this way, if you're willing to do street performances, or are willing to sell your "skills" in a more private environment. Yes, there are opportunities to become a fish hooker if you are so inclined. Merfolk may also offer money to take you as arm candy to various public events, escort style. They don't consider this to be a particularly socially inappropriate thing to do, either.
You can ask general questions about this setting over on the event post. There are top levels below for buying Atlantean merch, and also for making dolla dolla, if your character is inclined to try.
- Tags:!event, @atlantis, amethyst, ginko, greg universe, hinawa, jimmy novak, john childermass, joker, jonathan strange, katsuki yuuri, lars, lauren, miko nakadai, mutou yuugi, papyrus, peridot, phichit chulanont, sans, steven universe, susan, terra, viktor nikiforov, yotsuba tamaki
The Ringmaster, all Supervisors, and any rule-breaker onlookers.When:
Twilight on D40Where:
The woods surrounding the grounds.What:
The Ringmaster found something threatening and has decided to share it with her supervisors.Warnings:
|CATCH A FALLING STAR↴|
The Ringmaster waits for all of the Supervisors to arrive before continuing onward. She doesn't say much about what they are doing as they wait for everyone to arrive, simply explaining that she has found something concerning that she needs to show them. Once everyone is together, she will lead the pack into the woods - with or without any snoops who may be trying to follow after, against her wishes.
The forest is far more accommodating to her than it is to anyone else who tries to navigate it. Instead of getting wound in circles by its path, and running into dead ends, it's as if the trees have moved themselves to intentionally create an easy path for her to follow. It's stretching into the twilight hours as they travel, and various phosphorescent flowers and pods have begun glowing among the leaves with the shift to night, faintly illuminating the way. The sun is low in the sky when they arrive at the spot, still present but swiftly fading as its light cuts through the trees in beams.
They reach an area that is not so much a clearing as it is a small space, tucked away between trunks and branches. In the center of that space lies a large, black mark, cut into the earth like a ritual sigil. The dirt and rock is blackened along its lines, and all plant-life within a few feet of its presence has died out completely. As the dark approaches, the black of the lines will seem to paradoxically glow, as if the void within it somehow creates a light of its own.
The Ringmaster kicks a few last leaves off of the mark - it seems that she's been clearing away mess from this spot already today, and indicates the digit with a snarl of disgust.
"I told you I was cursed!" she insists, putting her hands on her hips.
- Tags:!event, gongenzaka, john childermass, joker, jonathan strange, koel babic, peridot, sans, sherlock holmes, starscream, the psiioniic
EVERYONE! Especially Tamaki, Carly, and Childermass.When:
S1:D40 - the first day of the second performance week.Where:
The carnival, while the gateway to the Matrix is open.What:
Agents find the carnival. They don't like it. Neither does the Ringmaster.Warnings:
Body horror for some people, gun violence for others. Also, a pissed off Ringmaster.
The days following the kidnappings and attacks are tense. The performances go smoothly enough, but are delayed by those that have been bedridden or captured - only for the vanished workers to return a few days after the initial attacks. Bad things have been done to them, clearly, but the specifics are unclear, as is why they seem to have been released without a fight. Maybe the machines just had no further use for them, as unlikely as it seems.
Regular humans from the Matrix come and go. They experience the carnival, balk at the possible unreality of their lives, and then go home. What it accomplishes is ambiguous and perhaps unsatisfactory to some. All the while, the threat of something more ominous lurks.
The sensible thing to do in this situation would be to pack up and leave, but even if it is broached to the Ringmaster, she will be resistant. She spends much of the Off Week mulling over the idea, only casually recommending that people might want to stay out of the Matrix for the time being, but not enforcing it. When the next week rolls around, she makes the somewhat unpopular decision to declare that the carnival is opening its gates to the Matrix again. Workers are directed to prepare for another week of performances.
This turns out to be an irresponsible choice.
► AGENTS ATTACK: Mere hours after the carnival gates open, theoretical threats assertively make themselves a reality. It may not be entirely clear what happened to all observers, but the generalities appear something like this: the gates open and performances start, humans enslaved within the Matrix start to come in, just as before, and then... chaos breaks out. Suddenly Agents are there, something the Ringmaster had assured wouldn't happen. The numbers of Agents present seem to multiple within a short time period, but with some luck you may spot the original source - it's the three captures carnival workers, Tamaki, Carly, and Childermass.
► THE BUGGED: For Tamaki, Carly, and Childermass, this is sure to be an unpleasant experience. How much they experience or remember of this will vary, but what will essentially happen to them is that three Agents are going to use their implanted bodies in an attempt to import themselves into the carnival's reality - that is to say, they are going to try to upload themselves into their bodies through the implanted bugs, and overwrite them as they do with the Matrix natives. (For an example of how this usually, watch the helicopter be overwritten by an Agent about ten seconds into this clip.) This won't really work like how they intended, given that the carnival's reality is a mixture of code, magic, and matter at the moment.
How exactly this pans out with your character is up to you - you can have them completely turn into an middle aged white man with a gun (or a different middle aged white man if they already are one) but have the Agent's control falter after a short while, or they can only partially change and partially take over. Or, they can just try to possess your characters body for a while, with no physical changes. Motivation wise, the Agents are pretty simple. They discovered the anomaly of the carnival and wanted to know what the fuck was going on, but what happens after arriving isn't really what they were expecting. They will be attacking primarily out of reflex and out of a lack of better ideas. They are machines, programmed for a purpose, and will do their best to accomplish that - right now, that is eliminating a threat. The bugged characters can be saved by being taken down/knocked out/restrained enough that the Agents will make the jump into another nearby Matrix native.
From there, they will multiply, for a short time.
► KICKBANNED: After the Agents enter through the three bugged characters, more Agents will appear by overwritting some of the nearby Matrix natives. Overall we are talking about 6 Agents spread out around the carnival at any given moment, but if you kill or injure their host they will be able to jump to a new human and take them over. The attack will be short, but unpleasant. After about 15 minutes the Ringmaster will realize what is happening, and put a swift end to it. If any of the possessed characters haven't been knocked out/saved by then she will literally and figuratively rip the Agents out of them, returning them to normal.
After that she will tear apart the coding/consciousnesses of the remaining Agents and kick all of the remaining visitors out, slamming the gates behind them. She will be very pissed, and it will be scary to watch. Then, she will declare that they are packing their figurative bags and moving the fuck on, thank you very much.
OOC GUIDELINES: The carnage here should not get excessive, though people are welcome to get hurt if they want to. The fight will be short, and ultimately the Agents will be too confused to be super effective - however, it's more than enough to provoke the Ringmaster into being done with this shit. Any Agents killed will revert to the dead body of whatever human they were possessing. These bodies will also disappear when the Ringmaster kicks everyone out. If they jump from a live host, the host will be left with whatever injuries they sustained. The bugged characters will have to get their implants removed by the Doctor.
Overall, this isn't meant to be a total bloodbath, and the carnival workers will have a good shot at handling the Agents on their own turf. It's mostly the fact that they keep coming back that is the problem. Character's abilities function as normal inside the carnival, and they may possess a small portion of their One powers for the duration of the fight, too.
OOC questions can be directed to the original plot post. If you are one of the three possessed people and really don't want to do this plot, we can figure a way to minimalize it for you, but I'm hoping this is something the plot volunteers find exciting.
- Tags:!event, @the matrix, carly nagisa, ginko, greg universe, hinawa, jimmy novak, john childermass, joker, jonathan strange, koel babic, lapis lazuli, lars, mitsuki izumi, peridot, sans, sherlock holmes, sora, steven universe, susan, tanyuu karibusa, terra, the psiioniic, yotsuba tamaki
Steven, Greg, Peridot, Zecora, and OPEN.Where:
The Doctor's medical tent.When:
After the attempted agent kidnapping of him and Peridot.What:
Steven gets shot with a gun, and has to go to the doctor. It's upsetting.Warnings:
Gun wounds, the left overs of violence.( my only weakness )
Tamaki, Childermass, Carly, Susan, Peridot, and Sherlock. And AGENTS.Where:
Inside The Matrix.When:
The Agents have been watching your activities over the last week, and they’ve decided it’s time to act.Warnings:
Violence and most likely body horror.
The visitors have not be subtle in their intrusions, and for a time the Agents have held back, analysing the true effects of these new entities before deciding to make a move. But now, their patience has run out. The source of this infection must be found, and eliminated, or else the whole system could be dragged apart.
These aren’t just the rebelling humans. These are something else.
[OOC: Tamaki, Childermass, and Carly were selected from the danger raffle to be fully abducted by Agents. Susan, Peridot, and Sherlock will be attacked by Agents, but will escape when Resistance members intervene. Please make a top level below with your characters doing something in the Matrix that is relatively secluded from big crowds of people, as that is when the Agents would most likely strike.
You can bring other characters along if you like for the initial confrontations, though only the selected characters will actually be captured by Agents. Any injuries sustained in these fights will equally damage character’s real physical forms, no matter how damage resistant they may normally be. Unless they are bending the Matrix to use their powers or to alter it with One powers, they will be as vulnerable as a normal human.
Agents and Resistance members will be played by the mods in this log.]