< A Nice Awakening, and a Ziggurat | Ex Pulplogs | Lying Is Bad For The Soul >

Storyteller When noon arrives Xar and Myrrh have finished their work on the talismans and the transaction goes off without a hitch. Now the Circle has enough money on hand to take care of themselves, very well in fact, for their stay and probably their stop in a city as well. The profits from this will last them a while. The question is, of course, what to do now?

Storyteller Carmine and Corve, after their happy time last night, were able to scout the Ziggurat's grounds and a get a feel for the security in place around the structure. And there are still two days before the time Grandmother Bright indicated they should be in the Ziggurat.

Xar'Rex looks at Carmine and Corve, sniffs the air a little, and nods, satisfied.

Myrrh gives Xar a look. "Anyway we should be very well taken care of for awhile...assuming we aren't going to be fined for any more crimes."

Corve looks at Xar with a raised brow, even as he pushes the shells into Judging Thunder, listening for the distinctive 'click' of them getting into place. He'd ask, but he's not all that anxious to know the answer, frankly. The selling of the talismans had gone well, and now they had some money. He smiles at Myrrh. "I guess we shouldn't get caught if we comit any," he says.

Xar'Rex "Fines are bad." he says solemnly.

Carmine "Almost as bad as prison."

Myrrh "Yes almost as bad. Altough i'd say having no money in a far off land would be worse. Atleast in prison they feed you..."

Corve nods. "Almost," he says. "In any case, like I was saying... the ziggurat is a political fort. We're probably not going to be getting anywhere legally, so screw that... unless any of you want to try to get permission from some high priest of whatever the religion down here is..?" It's mostly a rhetorical question, though he's never really sure what his friends will answer when he asks questions like that.

Myrrh "Xar? I'm not too well versed in the south."

Xar'Rex "What is the question?"

Corve blinks. "I just want to know if you guys want to give legality another try, or just sneak in and raise hell."

Carmine "Where did we have to be in the ziggurat anyway? And for how long?"

Corve shakes his head. "Grandmother Bright wasn't very detailed in her instructions. She simply said 'arrive to the city within nine days, and on the tenth, go to the ziggurat.' So... perhaps then it'll be open to the public? I doubt it, thoguh."

Xar'Rex "On the tenth day, until something happens. I do not want to be imprisoned again. It is...boring. But the thing they worship in the Ziggurat," he lowers his voice, "is not a god... but the City God is Rivoshi the Tortoise Woman. She might know."

Myrrh "Maybe we can ask her. We have the time to do some research on the matter before we start breaking into government offices..."

Xar'Rex "How did your mission go last night?" he cocks his head to one side.

Corve scratches his jaw for a moment and then locks his rifle after loading it, and proceeds to load his six-shooters calmly. "Yeah, that might be the best idea. We go to Rivoshi and try to find some information about the thing in the ziggurat. We use the information (if any) to our best advantage when the time comes to crash the party." He locks the second six-shooter and holsters them both. "That okay with everyo--"

Corve looks at Xar and then at Carmine, then back at Xar. "We went this morning. Thre's three entrances--two heavily guarded, and the servants' one that isn't. They don't let 'outsiders' in without permission... and getting permission seems like it's going to be a bureaucratic mess."

Xar'Rex "How are the servants picked?"

Corve shakes his head. "Didn't have time to find out, we had to head back. But we weren't going to be getting information there, the chief guard (at least from the looks of it) was pretty adamant about being a fucking prick." He unsheathes his machete and starts to clean it, making sure it's still as sharp as ever.

Xar'Rex blinks at the terminology. "A what?"

Corve looks at Xar, raising an eyebrow. "A really annoying idiot."

Xar'Rex "What does that have to do with...fucking...prick?"

Corve swallows a little and shrugs. "It's just an expression, Xar. Humans have weird linguistic issues, you should know that by now."

Xar'Rex 's feathers droop a little, and he grunts. "You are a strange people."

Corve nods a little and sighs. "Tell me about it..."

Myrrh "Well where can we find this Tortise Woman?"

Corve sheathes the machete again and looks at the other three beings in the room with him. "So, we can all sit here and ponder the eldritch languages and colloquialisms, or we can get moving..." he nods to Myrrh. "...yeah, where can we find her, Xar? Does your soulmate know?"

Xar'Rex gets a far off look for a moment, then nods, "She too lives in the Ziggurat, humans, but if you prepare her a fine offering, she may deign to join you in your place of prayer." he looks around with disdain, "so long as it is not a place such as this, which is unworthy of her presence."

Myrrh "Well what would be worthy of her presence?"

Corve snorts. "I'm guessing tortoises..?"

Xar'Rex laughs, "You will have to figure that out for yourselves." and is gone.

Carmine "...somewhere with less tacky decoration?"

Corve grins at Carmine. "That might be smart. Grandmother Bright didn't seem all that pleased last time."

Myrrh "Hmm...well let's go looking for a nice spot. I'm sure Xar and I can come up with a nice sacrifice."

Xar'Rex nods, "We will. Maybe a place where the tortoises live?"

Carmine "Maybe a park? with a toroise pond? Or one of her temples?"

Corve "Tortoise pond sounds good. Let's go find one."

Xar'Rex "Hmmm, did you see one when you were exploring?"

Carmine "Oh... there was that park on the way to the market place."

Corve nods. "In the middle of the city. Might be a bit blunt to summon her there, but it's not like we haven't done it before."

Xar'Rex "Oh, market place, we should go there. We need something for the Goddess."

Corve "Let's go, we'll cross to the garden through the market place and pick something up."

Xar'Rex nods, and begins to consult with Myrrh on an appropriate gift, as they walk.

Corve gets up, picking his things up and putting on his suncoat with the less shiny side outwards, so he attracts less attention... although with Xar and Carmine it might be a moot point.

Xar'Rex "When you help us buy things to make a gift with, then we will go back to the hotel, and you can talk, see if the servants will say anything?"

Corve nods to Xar. "Sounds like a good idea."

Storyteller The Circle gathers what they need, Xar and Myrrh burning through a considerable portion of their earnings, and returns to their hotel room where they begin the construction of a spice-storing music box in the shape of a large tortoise. Surely this will impress the goddess!!

Corve decides it's best to accompany Myrrh and Xar throughout the entire endeavour, and to attempt talking to the servants later if they feel they don't have enough information once they've spoken with Rivoshi.

Xar'Rex informs Corve how long it will take

Corve decides to go talk to the servants with Carmine, then!

Carmine walks with him, leaving her sword in the care of Myrrh and Xar

Storyteller Corve's keen investigator eye is able to locate a likely-looking woman leaving the servant's gate of the Ziggurat later that night. Dressed in formal livery she is probably a higher-level servant with her own home in the city. But she looks righteously angry, glancing back over her shoulder and muttering nasty things.

Corve leans over to Carmine and smiles. "Put on your pleasant face for this one," he mutters, and then takes her hand, walking directly towards the woman from slightly to the side. "Umm... excuse me miss, I was wondering if I could borrow a minute of your time?" His voice is pleasent and friendly, trying to calm her down just with his presence.

Carmine smiles pleasantly at the woman

Xar'Rex takes a few moments to make a little tortoise charm for each of them, and a little old lady charm

Angry Lady "What do *you* want? I've had a bad day!"

Corve blinks and looks at her, still smiling. He doesn't seem at all taken aback by her angry words, and just moves his hand a little to emphasize his point. "Terribly sorry about your bad day... I wouldn't want to trouble you, really, but this *is* a delicate and important matter. It'd be rude of us to just ask and run though... can we buy you a drink in exchange for you perhaps answering some questions?"

Angry Lady glowers at you, but considers the drink. "It had better be a really good drink."

Corve smiles. "Well, we're not exactly natives, so you'll have to lead the way to the nearest bar."

Angry Lady "How about you just give me the money and I'll get it myself. What do you want anyway? It's late."

Angry Lady holds out her hand for the money.

Corve doesn't reach for the money. He's not /stupid/ for Sun's sake. "Actually, we just wanted to ask you what the inside of the ziggurat was like. We're interested in the internal architecture of the place, but the bureaucracy is just so damn slow that by the time we gain access it'll be too late for the information to do us any good." He sticks his hand in his pocket, and paper shifts around, as if he's holding the money.

Xar'Rex crafts greatly!

Angry Lady "Is that all? It's very nice inside except for the horny dimwits that guard the place. Anything else before I get my money?"

Corve smiles. "Well, we were kind of hoping you'd tell us what goes on. It's especially important for an artchitect to understand the purpose of a place when designing it. Who will live there, what they will be doing... and it bring 'very nice' doesn't provide a lot of details, miss." He's still pleasant, never raising his voice or acting aggressively.

Carmine "Please?" she smiles encouragingly at the woman

Angry Lady sighs. "It's a bunch of offices and worship rooms and then..well you don't need to know about anything else. Offices and small temples. And the big temples, of course. Nothing else."

Carmine "Temples to what?"

Angry Lady "The important gods, of course. Weather gods, harvest gods, Lady Rivoshi, trade gods. All the ones we have to pray to to get things done."

Corve "Actually, that's exactly the point, miss. We need the 'anything else' as well. I heard there was another entity you worshipped here... aside from Lady Rivoshi and the other gods..." he says, trying to reel her in.

Angry Lady closes her face. "You heard wrong. We're not heretics. Now you give me that money for my drink and be gone!"

Corve looks at her and raises a brow, still smiling. "You know, we've been nothing but cordial... and I never said you were a heretic. I'd just like a little information, and I'm willing to pay for it once I have it... so you can either help us, or not. But that's up to you." He raises a brow, and smiles, as if, somewhere in his mind, he knows somerthing she doesn't... and it's really important for her well being.

Corve ponders for a moment, realizing he's probably not really being very logical about this, and sighs. He takes out the money and holds it out for her to take. "Here."

Carmine "Look... " she smiles in a cocilatory manner, her smile brightening the air "We don't want to ...we're not going to judge you heretic. We just want to know." she puts an arm on the woman's

Angry Lady takes the money hurridly, counting it and then stashing it away. "Well I don't know what you're talking about. We just worship the gods, thats all. Why are you so interested in the Ziggurat?"

Corve sighs. "Man, this lying thing's not my forte. Alright, look--honestly? We have a meeting to attend to, but unfortunately, the people that organized it forgot to tell us that we weren't going to be allowed inside unless we had special permission. So we need to get inside... and we want to know something about what we're going in to. I mean, you have to admit, it's pretty imposing!" He waves a hand at the ziggurat.

Angry Lady "Well that person is very stupid since outsiders aren't allowed inside. That's why you're "outsiders". You stay "outside"."

Carmine "Someone said it might ...I lost my memories ... but someone said something we might meet inside the ziggurat would help..."

Corve nods adjudicantly at Carmine's coment, hoping the woman might have some sympathy for this side of their plight.

Angry Lady looks around. "Well, since you're carrying around that type of weapon" she eyes Corve's guns "Maybe there's something we can do, since you're already trying to be criminals."

Sneaky Lady "But if you want my help, you better be quiet about it! And we have to talk somewhere private."

Corve smiles a little, looking around. "Quiet's what I do... where to?"

Carmine "Well, if you know somewhere...?"

Sneaky Lady guides the two of you into a small, smelly, stinky tavern with drunken and, frankly, ugly dancing girls and lots of traders. She takes a seat in the back of the badly-lit room and orders an expensive, horrid-looking drink.

Corve follows the woman, not at all taken aback by the place... except the really ugly women, but he barely seems to notice them, really. He unlocks his rifle and slides it onto his lap after sitting down next to Carmine.

Sneaky Lady "No one important comes here, so we should be alright to talk. Now, you serious about getting inside the Ziggurat?"

Carmine "Very."

Sneaky Lady "And if you do get inside you won't destroy it or anything or hurt anyone important or do anything that might get me in trouble?"

Corve smiles. "We'll make our best effort not to cause a ruckus, but if something goes out of line, I can guarantee you you won't be taking any falls for us. We don't even know your name."

Sneaky Lady "Well there is that."

Sneaky Lady "Now I can help you get inside, I'll just claim I hired you to help with the big feast in a few days. But if I do that, I want you to do something first."

Carmine "...how many days?"

Sneaky Lady "It's on the day of the New Moon, two days from now. But that doesn't matter."

Carmine "...I'm just curious...what's the feast for?"

Corve bites back a smile.

Sneaky Lady "It's to honor one of the gods, of course. There's a big ritual feast every new moon."

Sneaky Lady "But if you want me to let you in, you have to take care of a problem I've been having recently. Guard Sergeant Grodul."

Carmine "What's he look like?"

Sneaky Lady "He's about six feet tall, big brown beard with a red stripe in it near his left ear. One eye is green and the other is brown. His guardsman's hat has a blue feather in it."

Sneaky Lady "I'll show him to you."

Corve "What do you need us to do?"

Sneaky Lady "I really don't care, so long as he no longer comes to work."

Corve nods slowly, trying to come up with a plan. Wouldn't be too hard to get on a rooftop and snipe his kneecap to shreds on his way home from work...

Sneaky Lady "We have a deal?"

Corve leans over to Carmine, whispering in her ear below the din of the tavern.


Corve "I wonder if we should tell her there's two more people with us, and that one of them is a Dragon King..."

Carmine "We should mention Xar...unless the goddess can get him in..."

Corve "We have to strike the deal now, though..."

Carmine "Not that many like him though..."

Corve "I know... we'd better warn her of at least the *possibility.*"

Carmine "Yeah."


Corve looks back at the lady after a moment, and smiles at her. "There's one thing that you might want to know. There's four of us. And while one of the others looks normal... umm... the fourth is a Dragon King. Now, we're trying to find another way for him to get in, so hopefully it won't come to this, but do you think you could provide passage for all of us?"

Sneaky Lady blinks. "Well I don't know about that. I don't normally hire Dragon-Kings as servants. In fact, I don't think that's allowed...or something.."

Corve sighs a little. "I'll tell you what... we'll take care of the guard for you. Seems like he's a creep anyway... you find out if you can get all of us in, and we'll meet her tomorrow at the same time. If you can't, we'll go from there. Deal?"

Sneaky Lady nods. "Alright. I'm going to finish my drink now, but you can leave. Just make sure he doesn't bother me any more."

Corve smiles. "Alright... here. Tomorrow. At this time." And then he stands up, hiding Judging Thunder under his coat and waiting at the door for Carmine.

Carmine stands and walks over to him and out into the streets again

Corve sighs as he looks at her, raising a brow. "That was somewhat productive. I wonder what got her so nervous at first..."

Carmine "Yeah..."

Corve shrugs. "We'll find out, I guess. Come on, let's go back to the hotel and find out how the boys are doing."

Storyteller The Circle is reunited!

Xar'Rex rejoices!

Corve slides into the hotel room and closes the door after Carmine, sighing. "Hey you two... how's it going on this end?"

Myrrh "I just wish we had more time is all! I think I could get this little guy dancing and singing...maybe even do stuff!"

Myrrh "Oh, hi Corve! Going well"

Corve "Hey... yeah? We have some good news, too."

Xar'Rex "What news?"

Corve smiles as he sits down, stretching his back and dropping Judging Thunder on the bed, and sliding his suncoat off. "We got passage into the ziggurat for the day we need to be there. Happens to be a feast then, we'll be entering with the servants. However, we're not sure if we can get Xar in... the woman isn't sure they even hire Dragon Kings.

Xar'Rex sighs, "And not one like me."

Corve scowls. "Yeah. But she's going to check it out. It's alright, Xar... we'll find another way in for you."

Carmine looks comfortingly at Xar

Xar'Rex withdraws from the rest, and walks over to the corner of the room

Corve leans back in his place and scratches his jaw a little, looking at the Dragon King... sighing. He pushes himself up and walks towards him, looking up, up, up. "Hey. You."

Xar'Rex grunts, and continues his contemplation of the wall

Corve rolls his eyes. "Don't grunt at me. I could grunt much better than you if I had that big a throat. It's not fair when you know you have the advantage, I can't even compete."

Xar'Rex snorts.

Xar'Rex "Leave me be. I will stay here."

Corve "Why?"

Xar'Rex "I am not allowed. It is a place for humans, not me."

Carmine "Xar ... we need you. The debt Grandma Bright offered was to you. Whatever it is might not even acknowledge us.."

Xar'Rex "You do not need me."

Corve raises a brow. "So what? We're not in Brume. I'm not going to tell you what you can and can't do. You're Xar'Rex. Artificer of crystal, glass, and other spectacular things! You're a DRAGON KING. I don't care if you have wings... hell, I don't care if you have a goatee! You're a Dragon. King. And your race was giving the title for a reason. So buck up. Who gives a shit what they think? You have a place with us..."

Xar'Rex turns, and growls, "With you, yes. But not with my kind, and not here."

Corve shrugs. "How do you think we feel? I walk down the street with my weapon and I get stared at... I can't use my Sun Given abilities in public or I get stabbed and shot at... we're all in the same predicament, Xar. Solars and Dragon King... we need you."

Xar'Rex "You are not the only one! You have us. You have her." he gestures at Carmine.

Corve looks at the Dragon King, unfazed. "And? You have us. Carmine can't remember her past... so she's even worse off than me... we're trying to help each other, Xar. You should rest easy knowing that you're doing something for people that don't even know you... you're being a decent being... doesn't matter what you look like or what they think."

Xar'Rex looks unconvinced

Myrrh "Yeah, just think of the statuary they'll make of you once we save everyone!"

Myrrh "Maybe even name a park after you."

Xar'Rex "Heh. Maybe I will disguise myself as one of you, and everyone will believe me."

Corve tilts his head. "You can do that?"

Xar'Rex "No." he says flatly.

Corve grins. "Good. We don't need a human Xar. Besides... what fun would all this be without people being scared of the big bad Dragon?"

Corve "Do you *really* care what these idiots think? 'Cause I don't..."

Xar'Rex "I ... can disguise myself, maybe as a statue."

Corve tilts his head. "A statue? I guess I'll talk to the woman about it. Even so, we should speak with Rivoshi. And Xar? Try to ignore the idiots of the world, or you're going to spend your life in corners."

Xar'Rex wraps his wings around himself like a cloak, "Thank you." He doesn't look happy, but he's not quite as frustrated as he was a bit ago.

Corve shrugs. "Friends will be friends..." he says, walking back to the bed and sitting down. "So... when are we going to be ready to go talk to Rivoshi?"

Carmine "Yes, what have you been making?"

Myrrh "Oh, right! Well, care to do the honors Xar?"

Xar'Rex "Go ahead, I did only the glass of these."

Myrrh "Oh, alright." Goes over to the second room and comes back with a silk covered object, he sets it down on the table and pulls the cloth away revealing a tortise made from a color shifting glass. It's covered with hinges and compartments. "It's a music box and spice carrier!" Opens one of the compartments and music begins to play. "I was going to try and make it an automaton but I figured we didn't have the time..."

Corve gapes a little, tilting his head and looking at the colors. "Oh... damn... can I get one of those when we get home? I keep losing my pepper..." he says. "I think that's going to do very, very nicely," he adds. "Any god who doesn't like *that* needs a serious readjustment of Essence."

Myrrh "We managed a different song for each compartment depending on the spice inside! Xar came up with a wonderful essence pattern..."

Carmine "...It's beautiful..espeically the way the glass shimmers.."

Xar'Rex "She will like it, we think."

Corve nods. "It's too bad we're all banned from Chiaroscuro... I bet these would sell real well there."

Xar'Rex "Maybe, in a year or two."

Myrrh "Yeah I still haven't worked out how to get it to make toast..."

Corve grins at Xar. "That's the spirit. Alright, so tomorrow we go and see the goddess, and then Carmine and I meet with this woman..."

Myrrh "I mean why have it hold cinamon if it can't make toast..."

Myrrh nods.

Xar'Rex "We came up with the plan for the toast, but did not have time to make it so."

Xar'Rex points one massive claw at a diagram

Corve peeks at the diagram and doesn't get it, but nods. "Well, I suggest we get some rest, then. Tomorrow will be a hectic day, and we need our heads clear."

Xar'Rex nods and retreats to his bed. Alone.

< A Nice Awakening, and a Ziggurat | Ex Pulplogs | Lying Is Bad For The Soul >