Monday, December 30, 2013

52- Pretty Pretty Pulp Adventurer

Dane: [GM] Felicity Johnson's body drops to the floor with a wet thud. Her head is mostly gone. Erm... good job guys.
Kyle: [OOC] I'm really starting to think it's true...
Ian: [OOC] That we need to be more careful around NPCs?
Kyle: [OOC] That we can't end a conversation  without someone dead.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali sits up and dusts off her dress. "Well I think we ought to be moving everyone. This isn't like the country. We can't just murder whomever we please."
Joe: [OOC] Wait, Kali's been wearing a dress this whole time?
Soo: [OOC] I don't know, I figured that would be the only thing appropriate. Like a simple, Edwardian day-to-day one. Nothing fancy. She usually wears a simple forest green dress with a white blouse. I could have sworn I've mentioned it before. 
Joe: [OOC] Somehow I feel like that should have factored into some action scenes.
Soo: [OOC] It's not like she's jogging in heels...
Joe: [OOC] I feel kind of betrayed. My mental image of this group was a gaggle of roughneck tomb raiders. Now I have to modify all my mental images for some kind of pretty pretty pulp adventurer.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey hops up. "Right. Nah which way out?"
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari looks around. "Let's hope there's a back exit."
Dane: [GM] There's a door in the kitchen out into a small backyard. The fence back there could be hopped.
Joe: [GR-210] "Last one out hangs for murder! Wee!" GR scoots for the door.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "Can they even hang a robot head for murder?"
Ian: [Mari Shasho] "If the police find my dream journal, they'll find at least 100 ways of ending GR-210's life." Mari runs out the back door and goes to hike the fence.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey turns as they leave and pulls out his revolver. "Wait a secon'." He takes the gun and fires shots through the panes of the window Felicity got sniped through. He then turns to run away.
Joe: [OOC] Needless violence, I love it! Although if you were really trying to win my heart, you'd have mutilated the body instead.
Kyle: [OOC] It's not needless. Your stupid maid-sniper needs to get away too and one hole in the window would help the cops figure out the angle of attack. I blew out the window to make the crime scene less clear.
Ian: [OOC] Oh, smart. Hey I got an idea that'll help too.
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari turns as they leave and flings a firebolt back into the house.
Ian: [OOC] Firebolt at level 2 Dane.
Dane: [GM] Going to forego an attack roll seeing as you're aiming for a building.
Dane: [GM] The building quickly bursts into flames as the fireball streaks in and ignites just about everything.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali hikes the fence and runs for it.
Joe: [OOC] I demand a penalty on that roll for being in a dress AND having one arm.
Dane: [GM] I'm going to impose one for being single-armed, but I'm ignoring Kali being in a dress purely because Joe asked for it. She made it anyhow with a very high roll.
Ian: [OOC] A one-armed woman in a dress hiking a fence in one move, she must have biceps like a tank.
Soo: [OOC] It's the lack of points in physical attributes. She's like a bag of dried leaves.
Dane: [GM] A loud explosion can be heard behind guys as you work at getting over the fence. A huge shockwave of hot air (coupled with all you idiots being on a fence) causes the fence to fall over. Behind you, the sky is lit up with orange as Mari's fire has spread to adjacent townhouses. The whole block is aflame.
Ian: [OOC] Why must I destroy everything I touch!?
Soo: [OOC] Because you touch everything with fire, love. We do need to discuss your definition of 'helping' too.
Joe: [OOC] Dane, is there ANY fence left standing?
Dane: [GM] I'm inclined to say yes purely to keep you moving.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 runs headlong at the upright fence and tries to smash through it.
Dane: [GM] GR-210 pointlessly smashes through the splintery wood of the fence.
Joe: [GR-210] "OH YEAH!"
Dane: [GM] *sigh* Done now?
Joe: [OOC] Very much so, thank you.

Friday, December 27, 2013

51- Get Protected

Dane: [GM] She seems to buy Kali's lie and tips her head a bit. "So you believe my husband faked being kidnapped to slip away on some sort of expedition? If so, then who demanded the ransom money?"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali nods. 
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "We're thinkin' meh'be the folks who turned on 'im also got greedy and tried tah pull a profit on the whole ruse."
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 skitters around to the middle of the talking people. "Wife of murdered person, may I investigate his personal belongings? There may be vital evidence related to how your husband is dead and never coming back again because he was brutally murdered."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari winces. "Our apologies for him ma'am. He's got a defective personality circuit and it's causing him some issues. He means well but he's having issues being tactful until we can replace it."
Ian: [OOC] Do I have to roll for that lie?
Dane: [GM] I'm fairly sure being played by Joe is, in fact, a disorder so I'm going to just accept it.
Joe: [OOC] Hooray! I'm not just a player, I'm a condition. Let's have a walkathon!
Kyle: [OOC] Every year, thousands of gaming groups are infected with Joe. There are no early symptoms, there is no cure. Get educated, get the facts, get protected.
Ian: [OOC] "Are you sure this group doesn't have Joes?" "Nah baby, that's just a rash. Now come and make an attack roll."
Dane: [GM] Felicity Johnson nods weakly and points GR-210 upstairs. 
Joe: [GR-210] GR rushes upstairs with glee. "I'm on a secret mission!"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "You have no idea how happy I am you let him go someplace else ma'am."
Dane: [GM] Dillon Johnson has a personal study on the second floor of his town house. Well, HAD, but you get the idea. The room is small but densely packed with books and small artifacts mostly related to northern ancient cultures. More than a few of them look familiar to things you saw back in that tomb/temple.
Joe: [OOC] Alright time for some Tomb (related item) Raider work. I roll to search the hell out of this place.
Dane: [GM] The room has many items that might be of use, but one stands out to you: a journal in which numerous details related to the temple near Colton are discussed. It seems Mr. Johnson was of the belief that the tomb complex contained untold riches. Curiously it also lists his wife as part of the plot.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 quickly bites down on the journal to carry it downstairs. He skitters to the group and spits it out.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "What is that you got there GR?"
Ian: [Mari Shasho] "It looks like a journal or something, let's take a look." Mari reaches for it.
Dane: [GM] Just as you reach for the journal a crack of lightening zaps near Mari's hand. You look up and Felicity Johnson has struck a fighting stance, her hand crackling with magical electricity. "Enough of this!" she yells angrily. "I'm a mage and this study is my consecrated channeling space. Just surrender and I'll end you quickly and cleanly!"
Soo: [OOC] A whatnow?
Ian: [OOC] Oh well, mages like me and this chick can have a single 'consecrated channeling space' basically a place arranged so all the magic channeling properties in it are uniquely suited to that mage (all spellcasters channel magic a wee bit different, you see). In short, in this tiny space, she's WAY more powerful than us.
Soo: [OOC] So running time?
Kyle: [OOC] Given the initiative bonus she's going to get, it'll probably just mean dying facing the wrong way. Nah Soo, you really REALLY don't want to mess with a mage in their space. We're going to just need to clobber her and hope we all have working organs at the end.
Joe: [OOC] Or I could say three simple words in character.
Kyle: [OOC] Those being?
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 turns on his eye-mounted flashlights and begins to hop around violently. "TAKE. THE. SHOT."
Dane: [Danielle] Danielle sees GR's signal and settles into her sniping posture. "If my master wishes you to die, you are already dead..." she mutters as she pulls the trigger.
Dane: [GM] A large caliber bullet rips through the window, loudly shattering it as the crack of gunpowder echos through the night. Felicity Johnson's head explodes in a massive burst of gore and brain matter.
Soo: [OOC] I think Dane is having too much fun playing Joe's NPC maid/sniper.
Dane: [GM] If I'm stuck playing her, I'm at least going to enjoy GM's privilege on the description.
Kyle: [OOC] Why must every NPC we meet die?!
Joe: [OOC] Ooh! I know!
Kyle: [OOC] Besides because of you.

Monday, December 23, 2013

50- I Commend My d20

Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali slaps herself in the face so hard, it might warrant an attack roll. "Why exactly do I work with you?"
Dane: [GM] Felicity Johnson gasps and covers her mouth with her hand. She's clearly shocked, but GR-210's incredibly, INCREDIBLY crass delivery seems to have stunned her into a sort of lull. After a moment she calms down. "I... I suspected this. Do you know how he died? Please tell me."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey tips his hat sort of respectfully. "It appears he was in league with some sort of expedition going off to the mountains near Colton, a mining town out in the provinces. They found some kind of ancient temple. He seemed to have been shot. We don't know if he was betrayed, or if he betrayed them."
Ian: [OOC] I appreciate that you forgot your accent that time.
Kyle: [OOC] How do you notice that before me?
Joe: [OOC] To be fair, that would have been an unreadable mess with a text-based southern drawl.
Dane: [GM] Back, had to make some rolls. As Felicity puts her hand up, Mari notices something shiny on her wrist.
Joe: [OOC] LOOT.
Soo: [OOC] *Gets a spray bottle full of water* I'll spritz you!
Joe: [OOC] HISS!
Soo: [OOC] Back! Back little troll!
Ian: [OOC] To be fair, it's not loot if the person is alive. Then it's just stealing.
Joe: [OOC] Good point. Kyle get your gun out, Ian hold her down.
Soo: [OOC] BACK! *spritz*
Ian: [Mari Sasho] Mari looks at the shiny thing, but tries not to look obvious about it.
Dane: [GM] The shiny object is a silver bracelet on a fine chain around her wrist. Much more significantly, it has a charm on it that looks exactly like that pendant Kali found on the shop owner you guys shot back in Colton.
Kyle: [OOC] To be fair, 'shot' makes it sound like murder. It was more 'slaying' because he was evil.
Soo: [OOC] I didn't think we established he was evil, just that he wanted to kill us for unspecified reasons.
Ian: [OOC] We're the protagonists. Anything that opposes us is inherently evil because the world revolves around us. We're good because we establish the definition of good.
Soo: [OOC] I think you're confusing narrative focus with morality.
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari elbows Kali and shows her the bracelet with a point of her finger.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali looks over and notices it. "Miss, I know this may seem oddly unrelated but I assure you it is: is there any significance to that bracelet you're wearing?"
Dane: [GM] Felicity sniffles. "It was a gift from my husband before he left. He said it was a northlander good luck charm. He had taken the hobby of researching ancient cultures. Why do you ask?"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "Oh well we found several charms like it while up in Colton. If it's a common thing in the northern provinces then I suppose it wasn't much of a lead."
Soo: [OOC] To lie to her.
Kyle: [OOC] Why exactly are we lying to her?
Soo: [OOC] I doubt this would have come up if it wasn't part of the plot. Specifically, Dane wouldn't have made secret rolls to see if we noticed it if it wasn't relevant. Now honesty is nice and all, but I figure until we know more about this lady and her part in all of this, we ought to keep our cards close to the vest, you know?
Dane: [GM] Dammit, you too Soo?
Ian: [OOC] Wow, try saying that three-times fast.
Soo: [OOC] What do you mean Dane?
Dane: [GM] Trying to metagame based on my actions. I thought you were the only one pure enough. Innocent enough.
Soo: [OOC] Isn't that how you play tabletop games though? It's all about reading and predicting the GM isn't it?
Dane: [GM] *sigh* 
Joe: [OOC] Isn't it cute guys? We managed to actually corrupt a new player's entire concept of gaming! I'm so proud of us.
Ian: [OOC] Well now I just feel dirty.
Kyle: [OOC] Yeah, but Joe being proud is kind of like if Hitler walked by and said "nice hat". It's not really related to anything, but you'd probably be overwhelmed with a sense of wrongness.
Soo: [OOC] Ian? Can you come over and we can go work at a soup kitchen for a couple days or something? I feel inherently evil and need to balance it out.
Ian: [OOC] Holy men used to go out and do penance to purify themselves by fasting and meditating in the desert. I'm not quite sure what the nerd equivalent would be.
Soo: [OOC] Discussing prime-time television and professional sports?
Kyle: [OOC] I don't know Soo, I feel like that's a stereotype.
Soo: [OOC] And it won't be hockey, Kyle.

Friday, December 20, 2013

49- Point and Dick Interface

Joe: [OOC] Okay, plan time. I've been doing some light biology reading and I think if I can get GR-210's robo-spider legs to puncture both of her lungs at the same time, we can kill her before she screams.
Kyle: [OOC] What kind of biology reading is that?!
Joe: [OOC] I'm not sure. Is First Blood a biology book?
Ian: [OOC] I don't think that's even in First Blood.
Kyle: [OOC] Wouldn't the air escaping the lungs make a noise?
Joe: [OOC] Yeah but it's the vocal chords that do the modulate it. It'd just be kind of a wet popping I'd think.
Ian: [OOC] Christopher Lee probably would know. I think he killed like a 100 Nazis.
Joe: [OOC] I think I've got him on speed-dial after that pub crawl a few years back...
Soo: [OOC] Dane, the men are lost in Rambo fantasies. I'm going to try and calm the woman down.
Dane: [GM] Okay then. Just do whatever then give me a roll. I'm assuming this is diplomatic.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali puts her hand up reassuringly. "I'm not armed ma'am. We didn't know Mr. Johnson lived with anyone. We're investigators."
Dane: [GM] The woman calms down a little, presumably because you didn't kill her immediately in some convoluted fashion. "I... I well yes. I'm his wife, Felicity Johnson."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "The case took an unexpected turn and we needed to do some investigating into Mr. Johnson's personal life. We thought we'd have to get in covertly. Is there a chance we can speak briefly? It's very important."
Joe: [OOC] I was kind of hoping her name would be something I could work into the 'Food-Genitals' mechanic like how I was calling Dill Johnson "Pickle Penis". Like, I dunno, Cucumber Spamwich.
Ian: [OOC] That was a stretch of a joke the first time. It hasn't exactly improved.
Kyle: [OOC] You call it a Spamwich?
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari nods. "Everyone be respectful, this just went from investigating to an interview."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey nods. "Weapon's fer mah per'tection ma'am. No threat meant."
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 believes in the saying "if you can't say something non-threatening, don't say anything at all."
Dane: [GM] Felicity Johnson goes back to her room briefly and returns with a robe on and walks down the stairs. "To whom to I have the um... pleasure of meeting?"
Kyle: [OOC] Guessing Soo's roll was a pass but not a big one. Play it cool. Think very un-Joe thoughts.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali holds out her hand and offers to shake. "Miss Kalinara d'Vostog. I'm a private investigator by trade. These are my associates."
Ian: [OOC] I kinda forgot Kali HAD a full name.
Joe: [OOC] Need to update your Ian/Soo fanfics now?
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey tips his hat. "Mr. Hunt. I'm the muscle I suppose."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari bows in the fashion of her homeland. "Mari Shasho, magical assistance."
Kyle: [OOC] That's one way to say 'lights people on fire'.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 skitters about. "I'm just here to keep things sexy!"
Dane: [GM] Felicity sits down in the study. "Oh, Lady d'Vostog. I had heard in the rumors you indulged in detective work but I never thought I'd get to meet you. Oh this will make a lovely story I suppose. But I suppose I'm just trying to be cheerful despite myself. What turn in my husband's case brought you here?"
Dane: [GM] Remember Soo, you have a huge amount of status traits and resources. It's normally a perk but in your own home city it's going to be hard to be unnoticed.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali puts her hand on Felicity's. "This is going to be hard to say..."
Joe: [GR-210] "Interacting with organics is my prime directive. Allow me. Ma'am, knock knock."
Ian: [OOC] I'm about to feel very bad for a fictional character and very angry at a real one."
Dane: [GM] Felicity looks very confused, her mind clearly racing with the signals she's getting from the group. "Um... who is there?"
Joe: [GR-210] "Not Dillon Johnson ever again. Unless someone who was shot, murdered and had his corpse eaten by giant bugs could knock on doors."
Ian: [OOC] How is THAT 'interfacing with organics'?
Joe: [OOC] Well, usually GR-210 interfaces with them by murdering them. His ability to talk to them is limited to being mean. Point and dick interface.
Kyle: [OOC] I think I just lost my soul from reading that.
Soo: [OOC] Is that what that odd, sucking feeling is?

Ian: [OOC] Maybe we should have just had Christopher Lee kill her. This might be more cruel.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

48- Pixie Dust and Elf Entrails

Dane: [GM] Okay, you made quite a racket going out that window.
Joe: [OOC] Oh come on, I don't get to roll to be sneaky?
Dane: [GM] You jumped... out of a window... yelling at the top of your robo-lungs. NO.
Soo: [OOC] Is 'robo-lungs' the medical term?
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey runs up to the door of the house and unlocks it, bolting inside.
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari runs after him!
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali chases everyone else. "Care to explain why we just got our cover blown and we're proceeding with this?
Soo: [OOC] I'm assuming my character is as confused by this as I am.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "The foot-high ninja jus' made a racket out there. Better we ain't on the street."
Joe: [GR-210] GR skitters around towards the door and goes inside.
Kyle: [OOC] Dane can I try to lock him out?
Dane: [GM] Hmm, I'm not how to handle that, so why don't we make it opposed speed rolls.
Dane: [GM] Bailey almost manages to slam the door closed before GR-210 can get in.
Joe: [OOC] Try to cut me out? Son of a Mac user!
Soo: [OOC] Hey! I use a Mac.
Joe: [OOC] And I forgive you because I'm willing to look past your flaws.
Ian: [OOC] I dunno yall, Linux or leave is my outlook.
Kyle: [OOC] We are not having this kind of conversation (I think it will go on long enough for one of Danes few remaining undamaged blood vessels to rupture with rage).
Soo: [OOC] Out of curiosity, what do you run  Kyle?
Kyle: [OOC] A magical box powered by pixie dust and elf entrails that shows me Netflix if I massage its clicky-bits the right way.
Soo: [OOC] I think I heard that from my apartment.
Ian: [OOC] Dane is out of town on business.
Soo: [OOC] And I think I still heard it.
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari looks around the entryway and pokes her head into the nearest doorjamb.
Ian: [OOC] *Quietly hugs Dane till he calms down*
Soo: [OOC] *Joins in*
Dane: [GM] The house is small but nicely decorated. Contemporary fashion in that classic Victorian-style green seems to be the trend. The room Mari is looking into is a small dining room with a nice wooden table.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey cracks his back. "Well I think we ain' got long tah look 'round before the copper show, so les' make this quick."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali nods and heads up the stairs. "I've got the bedroom covered. Someone find a study or something.
Joe: [OOC] Wasn't that traditional Victorian green coloring made with arsenic? I remember reading that somewhere.
Kyle: [OOC] I think we can resist licking the walls for a moment.
Ian: [OOC] Really? I do like to chew the scenery.
Kyle: [OOC] I'm going to ignore that pun because I don't want to kill you.
Soo: [OOC] I liked it actually. Definitely among my top five jokes regarding slow, horrible death by arsenic poisoning.
Joe: [OOC] Just saying, when the police show up, you can lure them inside and light the place up. No survivors.
Kyle: [OOC] Except for the robot that doesn't need to breathe.
Joe: [OOC] A failure to prepare on your part, not mine.
Dane: [GM] For the record I'm going to enjoy this.
Dane: [GM] As Kali walks up the stairs, a woman in her mid-thirties in a nightgown stands at the top of the stairs weilding a candlestick defensively. "Who the hell are you?!" She yells.
Soo: [OOC] Um guys... did we ever check to see if Dillon Johnson was married?
Ian: [OOC] Well this just got awkward.
Joe: [OOC] Talk about it Ian. I put on my burglarizin' music. My home invasion/murder soundtrack is a whole different playlist.
Soo: [OOC] Should we bother learning this woman's name or is she going to just be another corpse soon?

Monday, December 16, 2013

47- The Weather in Hell

Dane: [GM] Do you guys want to do anything before we move on to tonight?
Joe: [OOC] I need to go buy a sniper rifle, can I just assume it's handled?
Dane: [GM] I know I'm going to regret asking this, but why?
Joe: [OOC] Danielle needs a weapon and I put a lot of points towards sniping-related traits. 
Soo: [OOC] I thought she was a maid who specialized in polishing robots.
Joe: [OOC] She is, but the closest the game will come to letting me represent that was the Profession (Maid) and Repair skills. That left a lot of points open so I figured I'd make her into a sniper.
Kyle: [OOC] Which makes perfect sense.
Joe: [OOC] Exactly Kyle, I don't know why people have to be so critical of good roleplay.
Kyle: [OOC] Dear god, even sarcastically agreeing with Joe makes me feel unclean.
Dane: [GM] Well there really isn't any gun control laws to speak of in the Imperia, so if Kali's paying I guess that's fine. 
Soo: [OOC] If Kali doesn't then he'll start doing something horrible, illegal and probably-involving-orphans to get it, so yeah sure, she'll pay.
Joe: [OOC] Isn't the world so much easier when we all just realize how these things work?
Ian: [OOC] In the sense that one of the upsides to living in hell is knowing the weather will be consistently hot...
Dane: [GM] Anyone else?
Dane: [GM] Okay good. Night falls and it's about midnight before you know it. The streets are illuminated with oil lamps that cast weak shadows among their lightly flickering areas. Dillon Johnson's house is a smaller townhouse not far from Kali's. It's nice, but only two stories.
Kyle: [OOC] The peasant.
Soo: [OOC] Honey, you're character is sleeping on my couch in a trenchcoat.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 skitters about on the ground. "Danielle, go scope out a good place to shoot from; try the roof of one of the houses on the opposite side of the street. I need full coverage on the front side of the house."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali crosses her... well crosses her one arm, and stares at GR. "What the heck are you planning."
Joe: [GR-210] "If the police show up, I want Danielle to be able to lay down some covering fire."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] "Isn't having her get onto the roof of a residential building and setting up a sniper's nest somewhat more illegal than breaking and entering?"
Dane: [Danielle] Danielle runs her hands along her sniper rifle. "Their lives will end with but a whisper from you, my master." She then slips off to go climb a fire escape.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "If she's gonna kill us all, I'm shootin' mah'self first."
Ian: [OOC] With your luck with rolls, you'll probably miss.
Kyle: [OOC] Fair point. Can I borrow that shotgun?
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari puts her hands on her hips. "Well, now that we have a much better reason to not be out in the open, how are we getting into this house?"
Joe: [GR-210] "Oh! Ooh! Ooh! I have an idea."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "Dare I ask?"
Joe: [GR-210] "Well, I'm pretty small. Why don't you just toss me down the coal chute? Then I'll skitter upstairs and open the door."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "And if the door to the basement is closed?"
Joe: [GR-210] "I'll have Danielle snipe the door open from her vantage point."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari tilts her head. "I don't think that's possible."
Joe: [OOC] I think you people fail to realize how many points I invested in her sniping.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali thinks briefly. "Let's try it. At worst we lose GR-210 forever in someone's basement and I think we can live with that."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey picks up the robot head and walks over to the coal chute. "I've often fantasized 'bout tossin' you inta' a furnace. This'll be relaxin'." He drops GR-210 down the coal chute.
Dane: [GM] GR-210 bounces noisily along the coal chute and hits the bottom, landing in a bin. All the bouncing made a racket but on the upside you slowed enough to not really take damage.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 skitters up the stairs and heads for the front door.
Dane: [GM] You have no issues getting to the front door, but the problem occurs to you that you really don't have hands of any description to open the door.
Joe: [OOC] What? You didn't say this wouldn't work!
Dane: [GM] I'm the GM, not the bad idea police. You should have thought of that your little spidery legs probably lack the motor skills to turn a brass door knob.
Joe: [OOC] Grr fine. Okay is there anything around like maybe a key?
Dane: [GM] There's a key on the counter by the door.
Joe: [OOC] I think I have an idea...
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 takes the key into his mouth and skitters over to the window.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey walks over to the window. "Well, watcha' know, the little guy found a key. Now toss it through the mail slot."
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 springs violently into the window, crashing through it to the outside while yelling "SNEAKING!" at the top of his robo-lungs.
Soo: [OOC] Oh for the love of toast...
Joe: [OOC] Dane I'm rolling for stealthing that.
Dane: [GM] You just threw yourself through a window pane yelling loudly.
Joe: [OOC] Okay fine, with a penalty.

Friday, December 13, 2013

46- Schrodinger's NPC

Soo: [Kali dVostog] "Okay everyone, just put your stuff down and make some lunch. I think we have some investigating to do tonight!"
Joe: [GR-210] GR skitters about excitedly. "And by investigating you mean breaking and entering?"
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey sighs. "GR, it's possible to learn things about someone by means other than breaking into their home."
Joe: [GR-210] "Learn lame things maybe. Juicy stuff always requires a pry-bar and some felonies to get to."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali shakes her head. "Actually I was thinking of just asking around with people who knew him."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari chimes in. "About that, actually. Nobody knows Dillon Johnson is dead except for us. Everyone else who knows him just thinks he was kidnapped."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "Hmm, I didn't think about that. Honesty is usually the best policy."
Joe: [GR-210] "I am sorry Mrs. Johnson, but your son was shot by thugs then probably eaten by giant bugs which are possibly eating their way through northern towns as we speak. Just wanted to let you know."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] "That does kind of remind me: how are we handling this whole extra-dimensional insect thing anyhow? Shouldn't we tell someone?"
Soo: [OOC] Yeah, we probably should have thought of that. Ideas?
Kyle: [OOC] I'm going to ballpark that if we tell someone in power, they're going to assume we're nuts.
Ian: [OOC] I dunno, there's a whole frozen dead town backing us up on this.
Kyle: [OOC] Point.
Dane: [GM] Actually, people know the town was destroyed, and that something non-human did it, but they don't know the specifics. You guys got on a train there, you didn't think anyone else asked around?
Kyle: [OOC] I tend to forget that something can possibly happen in an RPG when we aren't doing it.
Joe: [OOC] I'm of the belief that NPCs don't actually exist when we aren't looking at them.
Soo: [OOC] So what, Schrodinger's NPC?
Joe: [OOC] Nah, more like an infant's understanding of object permanence. If an NPC were in a box we'd know it'd always be dead because I would have killed it.
Dane: [Danielle] "The policemen were very nice at the train... Of all the people we've met who will eventually die and be forgotten by the unending march of time, I liked them the most." Danielle wanders off muttering something about dust.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 hops up and down on the kitchen table. "Look guys, we all know the truth of the matter: any number of means could get us information but only one of them is fun. Let's go rob his house already!"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "Even if we're breaking in, we're not going to steal anything. We're adventurers, not criminals."
Joe: [GR-210] "Enters places they shouldn't be, kills things, takes things, profits. Am I describing an adventurer or a criminal?"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali sighs. "I'm rapidly wondering why I chose to work with this crowd..."
Joe: [OOC] There's only a couple of roles you can really fill as a woman in a steampunk pulp adventure Soo and with your current lack of symettry I doubt you're going to play the femme fatale.
Soo: [OOC] There's no rule in the rulebook that says my lack of an arm effects my ability to seduce people... which seems kind of like an oversight error to me.
Ian: [OOC] You could be a mad scientist.
Soo: [OOC] Nah, dramatic gestures while mocking the natural order of the universe kinda lose something when done one handed.
Joe: [OOC] Like so many other things I do every day...
Kyle: [OOC] Explain that statement and I will end you.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

45- Talking to Knives

Dane: [GM] Okay so before you guys arrive, can I just get the gist of what you spent your points on? I figure the trip counts as downtime.
Soo: [OOC] I started taking magic skills. I could only afford one spell since the basic training costs so much so I took Dispel, tier one. Figure if we have a wizard, eventually we'll deal with some ourselves.
Ian: [OOC] I just upgraded my fire spells and took another point in longarms proficiency to make me more shooty.
Joe: [OOC] I used my points on Danielle, but my leftover ones I spent getting some Sneak. We don't have any stealth and I'm a tiny head. Seemed like a natural fit. The bonuses I rack up on size alone push me into ninja territory.
Kyle: [OOC] I put some more points into my diplomatic skills, since we seem to be ending all our conversations with death or explosions.
Joe: [OOC] Hey death is nature's period mark. Explosions are its exclamation points.
Dane: [GM] In order of responder: good thinking, why break what's not broken, the thought of what you'll use sneaking for is terrifying to me, and somehow I don't think that will change much.
Kyle: [OOC] I can dream, can't I?
Joe: [OOC] I have a dream. A dream where NPCs will not be judged by the nature of their role in the plot but by the content of their circulatory systems. But ooh I'm talking about sneaking plans now aren't I?
Dane:[OOC] The train pulls into the station at Imperian City. The cityscape in it's dense, winding form stretches out before you in all directions. The tall buildings in their myriad styles nearly blot out what little sun the smoke and coal-burning furnaces don't already cover. The streets churn with a complex array of people from all sorts of places and walks of life. Posters baring the likeness of the Empress beseech military age men and women to enlist along every wall, remnants from the last war.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali hops off the train and sucks in the heavy air. "Ah, it's good to be home. Warm showers, restaurants, little bars with piano players."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey saunters off the train. "Smoke! Bar fights! Bigger bar fights!"
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari picks up her bag and looks around. "Lots of people."
Ian: [OOC] Mari's never been to a big city before. She's from the eastern hill-lands.
Joe: [OOC] That's how you say bumpkin in RPG-speak.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 sits in Danielle's arms and hops around a bit. "Victims! Victims! Victims!"
Dane: [Danielle] Danielle holds onto GR and looks off wearily into the crowds. "Lives beginning, lives ending. Monuments to the present built up on the ashes of the past. Blood and sweat greasing the gears of a progress towards nothing but eventual oblivion."
Soo: [OOC] That still hasn't stopped being creepy.
Kyle: [OOC] Kinda makes sense. Anyone who would have to spend a lot of time with GR-210 would probably start thinking about horrible things a lot.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali walks down the station platform and hails a car (there's cars in this right?). "We'll go to my townhouse and get our things settled in."
Dane: [GM] A motorcar picks the group up and takes you all to Kali's townhouse in the nicer, more open part of the city.
Joe: [OOC] Just railroading me along like that? Maybe I wanted to do... things... at the train station.
Dane: [GM] Soo, feel free to describe your place.
Soo: [OOC] Kali's townhouse is a pleasant brownstone on a tree-lined street. It has three floors and is surprisingly plainly furnished for the house of someone as wealthy as her. That being said, it hardly has any discomforts and it seems like the furnishings were chosen based on how pleasant they were to use rather than how nice they look. The basement has furnished workshop and there's a small cozy study on the second floor. There's two bedrooms: one for Kali and one formerly used by her butler before he tragically died at GR-210's hands. The kitchen is furnished with polished brass accents and a nice tile floor.
Ian: [OOC] Nice place.
Joe: [OOC] Soo has a basement apartment. She's one of those people who glues home decor magazines into a scrapbook though.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "I only have two bedrooms so we'll have to make this work somehow. Mari can sleep with me in my room and I guess the other will be for Bailey and GR-210."
Joe: [GR-210] "What about my new life-companion?"
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "Couch is fine with me if it ain't no issue ma'am. I'd rather give a whole room ta' a robot 'ead than let 'im talk to me all night."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali nods. "I'll get a cot for Danielle, she can have the basement room. We'll keep GR-210 in the coal bin."
Soo: [OOC] I am NOT letting Dane's creepy-ass maid sleep someplace where I can't lock her. I intend to be able to sleep.
Dane: [GM] Firsly, it's Joe's creepy-ass maid that I'm forced to RP. Second, at the worst she'll just walk around the kitchen all night talking to knives.
Ian: [OOC] Soo, get a big padlock when you get that cot.
Joe: [OOC] I look forward to the rousing pillow-talk Ian and Soo will get into. Are you going to do each other's hair, or just compare your boobs all night?
Kyle: [OOC] I don't think that's what two women do when left alone in a bedroom, at least not most of the time.
Joe: [OOC] Are you kidding? Me and my wife compare every night.
Ian: [OOC] Can your soul be blind? I think mine is.
Joe: [OOC] It's not really about size so much as how it works with your body type.

Monday, December 9, 2013

44- Big-Titted Dolphin Women from Mars

Soo: [OOC] So then, train home?
Kyle: [OOC] Yep.
Ian: [OOC] I'm about done with here.
Joe: [OOC] I'm all for leaving.
Dane: [GM] Okay, I'll just kind of skip to the train, in case anyone was expecting intense ticket-buying action.
Joe: [OOC] Hey hey wait! We don't know how Danielle feels about this.
Dane: [GM] Danielle is a fictional character that has no bearing on the OOC discussions of the group.
Joe: [OOC] Assuming my maid doesn't have OOC thoughts is a very racist conceit.
Ian: [OOC] No, assuming your NPC HAS OOC thoughts is a very schizophrenic conceit.
Joe: [OOC] Fine, fine. I talked to Danielle and she said she's fine with it. Then she said something kind of creeping. What's a fork-job exactly?
Soo: [OOC] Dane, I know this is a bit of a role reversal, but please move the plot now.
Dane: [GM] The train pulls away from the station platform and you find yourselves finally leaving Colton (or at least what's left of it) and heading back to the capital at Imperian City. 
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 sits up on Danielle's shoulder and looks out the window. "Farewell Colton, my only regret is that you burned by a hand that wasn't mind."
Dane: [Danielle] Danielle looks down at her hands with empty eyes. "Dust in the wind. Everything."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali sips her coffee quietly, enjoying the comforts of the heated car after all that time in the snow. "Ignoring the lack of sensitivity for the dead, you don't even have hands GR."
Joe: [GR-210] "You're one to talk on the subject."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari flops down next to Kali to put someone between the two of them. "I hope the next part of this little expedition proves slightly less... negative."
Kyle: [OOC] Ian's kind of got a point. The guy we came here to find is dead. Kali lost an arm, GR-210 lost almost all of his body, Mari became legally a slave and Bailey had a conga-line of amusing injuries inflicted on him. I'd say this wasn't exactly an adventure to write home about.
Joe: [OOC] Well, I got a maid and Ian got a shotgun.
Soo: [OOC] Oh yes, a very disturbing NPC and a gun that I could buy 600 a week of at my character's income. Truly this offsets Kali's ability to use a typewriter quickly ever again.
Ian: [OOC] I almost forgot Mari is Kali's servant at this point. Kali's not very good at acting like a snobby upper-class lady.
Soo: [OOC] Well it's just an act for the statistical bonuses remember? Kali's too nice to actually make a big deal of it.
Dane: [GM] Speaking of lackies, Soo, you never got a replacement for that butler Joe killed. Normally it'd be replaced with another NPC but since it happened so early in the campaign, if you'd like to trade in the points for something else, I'm fine with that.
Joe: [OOC] Ooh! Get another one. Preferrably some kind of catgirl nurse so our NPCs can have fights for our affection. It'll be just like that fanfiction I wrote.
Soo: [OOC] I think I'm hearing strong arguments towards re-purposing the points.
Ian: [OOC] What the heck is that a fanfiction of?
Joe: [OOC] This group. I'll leave who was dressed up like a catgirl nurse to your imagination.
Kyle: [OOC] You had to ask.
Soo: [OOC] Well I don't want to take something that would appear out of nowhere and ruin the sense of immerision, so why don't I put it into Holdings and send you a list of stuff that I'm adding to Kali's townhouse back in the capital. We haven't been there yet so no one will notice.
Joe: [OOC] There's the great scene where Ian finally grows a pair and asks Soo by way of epic guitar solo, but then big-titted dolphin women from Mars snatch her away.
Soo: [OOC] Ideally some sort of psychiatrist's office, Dane. Can I get one of those?

Friday, December 6, 2013

43- Infinite and Unknowable

Dane: [GM] Can you guys like, do something. I'm really not comfortable RPing this very much.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali sucks up some breath and nods to herself. "Well, we have to do something. Those insects just wrecked a whole town!"
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey nods. "An' I agree with that miss. But what exactly can we do?"
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari looks around a bit. "I kind of think this is one of those things we'll need help with. I mean, giant bugs aren't exactly normal."
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 wiggles in Danielle's arms. "I see no reason to do anything, actually. We came here to find Dillon Johnson. We did. Granted he's less alive than before, but technically we succeeded."
Soo: [Kali dVostog] "Actually, GR's attempt at cowardice gives me an idea."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari nods and smiles. "All ears ma'am!"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali starts to gesture and talk, half her gestures missing since she's still not used to being one-armed. "So Johnson was here for some kind of expedition to that tomb. We should look into what he knew about it. Maybe go back to Imperian City and dig into Johnson's past a bit."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "But I thought he was kidnapped? Or have we worked around that now?"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali waves her finger. "I think that we were on to something when we thought he wasn't kidnapped. He was killed by a shotgun, not a bug so maybe he got betrayed by his co-conspirators. Johnson was wealthy, so it's possible he was duped into being the financial backer for the project."
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari scratches her head. "So a wealthy businessman gets involved with... something and then that group betrays him and accidentally unleashes a hoard of giant bugs that wipe out cities?"
Soo: [OOC] I think I'm on a logic roll!
Joe: [OOC] Dane's quiet while plot is being discussed, which usually means you're so dead on he's rapidly trying to change it so you're not right.
Dane: [GM] I am not!
Joe: [OOC] And he's denying it which means you're so correct he can't figure out how to mask it.
Soo: [OOC] Wouldn't being on track be a good thing?
Kyle: [OOC] RPG players are dangerous animals Soo. If we get too much momentum, we're exceedingly lethal. A GM relies on the group being mildly confused to keep control over them.
Ian: [OOC] That makes people who run tabletop games sound kind of evil Kyle.
Dane: [GM] Wait, we aren't?
Soo: [OOC] I didn't think so.
Dane: [GM] We're not so much evil, really, as we are omnipotent beings. This tends to manifest either as a sort of malicious indifference or as an urge to act as the group's guardian angel and save them from risky events.
Soo: [OOC] Which are you?
Joe: [OOC] Did you see any deus ex machina keeping Kali's arm attached?
Dane: [GM] Like I said, I'm not evil, just indifferent. 
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey cracks his back. "Well I think the missus is on'ta somethin'. Les' git back to Imperian City an' look in'tah Mr. Johnson's background."
Joe: [OOC] OOOH! Does that mean what I think it means?
Kyle: [OOC] Sigh, yes Joe. We're going to break in to someone's house in a crowded city.
Joe: [OOC] Can we burgle? I want to burgle me some burgle-ables!
Ian: [OOC] Sure.
Soo: [OOC] Why is breaking into someone's house so exciting?
Joe: [OOC] First you get to bypass security and whatnot. Then you get to steal stuff. Then, if you're super-lucky, someone calls the cops and we get to have an epic shoot-out or police chase!
Ian: [OOC] And that's a good thing?
Joe: [OOC] Is if you're me. Dane may be some cosmic, unknowable being, but I'm a beautifully simple collection of violent urges. He's a book of infinite volumes, I'm a pamphlet full of crime-scene photos and pornography.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

42- Something Very Wrong

Dane: [GM] Okay, so you get back to town and... well eesh. Even in the short time you've been gone since Bugocoplypse Now happened the bugs have shown up, eaten the heck out of everything and buggered (heh) off. The town is mostly either on fire, a wreck or just strewn with a dandy number of corpses. There are some dead bugs but mostly people just got eaten and killed.
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari walks around the edge of town, waving that dandy shotgun about just in case there's any more insects.
Joe: [GR-210] GR-210 skitters about on the ground poking every body and giggling like a robotic head of a schoolgirl.
Kyle: [OOC] That's an utterly horrifying image.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali walks along, having tied what's left of her sleeve off over her missing arm. "Something tells me that that whole issue between the mining company and the union just resolved itself rather hastily."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey nods and pulls his bandanna over his face to avoid the smell. "Yep."
Soo: [OOC] What ever did happen with all that? I felt like that was getting set up as a plot point.
Dane: [GM] A good GM can't rely on the party following the plot exactly as planned so I seed side possibilities out so that no matter what you guys do, it always seems intentional on my part.
Ian: [OOC] So kind of a more elaborate and better done kind of railroading?
Dane: [GM] Nah, it's less of a railroad and more a complex series of train stations. You get sent to different ones by getting on different trains, but once you're there I get the chance to poke you back to the right path by making another train show up.
Joe: [OOC] Hey Dane, when is my maid showing up?
Dane: [GM] Or sometimes you get stabbed by a drifter while waiting on the platform...
Dane: [GM] Can't you at least change the description Joe?
Joe: [OOC] Nope, I consider every detail I messaged you to be utterly crucial.
Dane: [GM] Among the wreckage of a nearby building, a woman in a maid uniform is milling about aimlessly, as if her very existence was an affront to the cosmic order of the universe. She has wavy red hair and green eyes.
Soo: [OOC] Why is that so painful for Dane?
Ian: [OOC] Dane has wavy red hair and green eyes.
Soo: [OOC] Oh... I see where this is going and it's horrible.
Joe: [OOC] He was originally going to change my description, then he needed me to cover a shift for him at the comic shop we work at. I used that as leverage.
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali puts her hand on her hip and tilts her head. "That's kind of an odd thing to see in the middle of all this, wouldn't you say?"
Ian: [Mari Shasho] Mari slings her shotgun back. "Maybe she works at the company office and she's got some kind of trauma-induced disorder."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "Maybe we oughta sit'er down before she gits 'urt."
Dane: [GM] Ooh, I kinda like that. Adds depth.
Joe: [OOC] I didn't agree to that.
Dane: [GM] You coerced me into her name and appearance. Personality was left blank.
Joe: [OOC] Only losers fill out the whole character sheet. That stuff is just fluff!
Dane: [GM] Oh this will be delightful.
Joe: [GR-210] "You there! Woman! Are you the one the service sent?"
Soo: [Kali dVostog] Kali looks down at GR. "Did you have something to do with this?"
Joe: [GR-210] "I simply had a hireling service bring over someone to help me in my newly limited state. Purely needed really. She'll be carrying me and polishing me from now on."
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] "A profesh'nal robot 'ead carrier and polish'er... dressed as a maid. That's kind'a an odd profession..."
Joe: [GR-210] "YOUR FACE IS AN ODD PROFESSION! You there! I require an immediate polish!"
Dane: [Danielle the Maid] The woman walks over, her expression distant and empty. She picks up GR-210 and begins to polish him with a sort of disconnected, creepy lack of interest. "My name is Daninelle, I'm from the robot polishing company. I will take care of you from now on sir..." She barely moves besides her hands cleaning GR-210. "The train I was riding up here was attacked at the station by those insects. I almost died but I survived by realizing that if I did, you wouldn't be served..."
Ian: [OOC] Well I'm horrifically disturbed by all this.
Soo: [OOC] Wow, Dane is kind of upstaging all of us.
Kyle: [Bailey Hunt] Bailey walks towards Danielle and offers to take GR from her. "Miss, ya look like ya have a little bit'a crazy in ya. May'be I should let ya rest a bit."
Dane: [Danielle the Maid] Danielle jerks back, squeezing GR-210 to her. "No! I only take orders from Mr. GR-210. Isn't that right sir?" She looks down at GR-210 with bizzarely empty yet fixated eyes.
Joe: [OOC] You've turned my moment of glory into something very wrong Dane... bravo sir, bravo.

Monday, December 2, 2013

41- What Downtime?

Dane: [GM] Should I just hustle the plot along till you guys get back to town?
Kyle: [OOC] Yeah, I guess. 
Joe: [OOC] I was really planning on RPing every turn from here to there. I wanted to see how many ways Dane could phrase 'there's snow' but I guess I'll just be agreeable.
Soo:  [OOC] Yeah I'm fine with that.
Ian: [OOC] To town! Or what's left of it!
Dane: [GM] Oh yeah, by the by, feel free to check on your UIs. I gave you some build points for hitting this point in this adventure. Soo, you get a couple more to make up for losing a limb.
Joe: [OOC] BS! I lost a whole body and I didn't get any balance points.
Dane: [GM] You A) lost your body by way of gross incompetence and B) are a robot and therefore it's not really too much for you to replace.
Soo: [OOC] You don't really need to give me points to balance it out Dane. I figure I'll just buy a robot arm or something later on.
Kyle: [OOC] This game doesn't have robot arms. That'd be silly.
Soo: [OOC] Wait, this game has fully functional robots but no robotic limbs?
Ian: [OOC] Well yeah. I mean if you want to be technical, giving a robot a crude (and in Joe's case, obscene) semblance of intelligence is a lot simpler than building a functional cybernetic-organic user interface.
Soo: [OOC] So a game with wizards and robots decides to draw the line THERE?
Joe: [OOC] Yep, it draws the line right at the bottom of your former left arm.
Soo: [OOC] Grr, fine. Gimme the damn points.
Kyle: [OOC] So, what's everyone spending their points on?
Ian: [OOC] I'm thinking I'm just going to sink it into some more magic. Maybe spread out Mari's credentials beyond her doctorate in burning shit to death.
Soo: [OOC] Maybe I should invest in a little magic. Might balance out my new-found inability to easily use ladders.
Ian: [OOC] Ooh that could be cool. We could say that Kali and Mari have been studying together in their downtime.
Soo: [OOC] What downtime? I'm fairly sure we've accounted for virtually every minute of everyone's day since this adventure started. I don't know, it just seems odd to learn a skill that I assume is something of a lifetime endeavor passively by knowing a wizard for a couple days.
Kyle: [OOC] Nah, downtime is just a giant convenience players use to justify all sorts of crap that happens off-screen. 
Dane: [GM] Yeah! Screw logical progression of time! In fact, let's just make the game into a bloody distortion of the fabric of space-time! Hooray, now all events occur at the same time. My job is so easy!
Ian: [OOC] Kyle, you know pointing out willful disregard for the plot makes Dane jittery.
Kyle: [OOC] Well anyhow, I'm going to specialize a bit and improve my gunfighting. We seem to end every conversation with gunfire anyhow.
Joe: [OOC] I've grown weary of having to come up with ways to describe skittering about on robot spider legs, so I'm going to invest in a follower to carry GR-210 around.
Soo: [OOC] Didn't I have a follower? Oh right, Archibald the butler. The one Joe murdered.
Joe: [OOC] No, I didn't. GR-210 murdered him for betraying us.
Ian: [OOC] Let's not indulge Joe on this.
Kyle: [OOC] Can a robot even have followers? Seems kind of odd.
Joe: [OOC] The rules don't say that I'm prohibited form having a follower and I technically meet the modest requirements. Can I Dane?
Dane: [GM] Yep, you can.
Joe: [OOC] Sweet. When we get back to town, we'll meet my new follower: a combination French maid and robot-polisher named Danielle.
Soo: [OOC] I don't think it's so bad. I mean, it's just one more thing Joe's saying for us to ignore.
Kyle: [OOC] Followers are RPed by the GM, Soo.
Joe: [OOC] Allow me to upload an illustration...
Ian: [OOC] NO!