Naga, the Referee: Steve Powers
Suhuy: Danny Hardesty
Witchboy: me (Harvey Smith)
<Naga> ok, let’s role-play.<Naga> you are in an inn…
<suhuy> d&d? i have heard this is satanic.
<suhuy> is this where i kill artie and jerry?
<witchboy> describe the inn.
<Naga> i can’t type fast, so be patient…
<Naga> a small, basement place–dirt walls and floor.
<suhuy> any patrons?
<Naga> dirty, rough tables, and a smell of decaying trash.
<Naga> yes–three soldiers.
<Naga> one of them is wandering back and forth accross the floor,
<Naga> singing old war songs.
<Naga> the others are playing dice.
<suhuy> well, witchboy, should we have a drink
* suhuy checks his pouch for money.
<witchboy> excellent notion.
* witchboy wraps his cloak about him and steps to bar.
<suhuy> u lead, i’ll follow.
<Naga> a terrified serving girl brings a platter of roasted meat and bitter ale.
<Naga> the grizzled bartender picks his nose and stares dumbly.
<suhuy> L or Z, witchboy?
* witchboy says, “Hello, girl…”
<Naga> the singing soldier stops singing.
<Naga> he is looking at witchboy.
* suhuy orders drink for himself and companion.
<Naga> “she is my girl…”
* suhuy fingers the dagger at side.
* witchboy nods. “I understand.”
* witchboy steps closer to the bar, ignoring the soldier.
<Naga> the bartender stoops below the bar and brings up an old bottle with a wax stopper. “7 soverigns, mate.”
* suhuy pays the man.
<witchboy> “Thanks…next time I will foot the bill.”
<suhuy> what about glasses?
<witchboy> “A table?”
<Naga> the bartender stashes the coins into a deep pocket.
<suhuy> as u wish…
* witchboy finds a deserted table and sits down, brushing the seat clean first.
<witchboy> “Join me here?”
* suhuy follows.
<Naga> “Share the bottle, it is a tradition around here. You should never drink with someone who you wouldn’t share a bottle with.”
* witchboy whispers “This is a dank, foul place.”
<Naga> The singing soldier picks up with a randy marching song.
<suhuy> the local are a bright lot also.
* suhuy drinks.
<Naga> the dice game comes to a sudden halt.
* suhuy offers the bottle to witchboy.
<witchboy> “They are clean people too.”
<Naga> “You cheating bastard!” roars through the room, and the soldiers stand up.
* witchboy stands.
<Naga> the bartender ducks.
<Naga> the serving girl scampers for the bar.
* suhuy places his dagger in lap.
<Naga> a sudden burst of wind blows the front door open…
<Naga> it is high up on a flight of stairs leading to the street level.
* witchboy slips his hand under his cloak, gripping the hilt of his
<Naga> so you only see the boots of someone who has stepped onto the top step.
<Naga> as the figure descends the stairs, you see a short, muscular man with close cropped black hair.
* witchboy glances for a window onto the street…
<Naga> not a soldier.
<Naga> no windows.
* suhuy looks at the soldiers.
<Naga> the lanterns flicker when the man steps into the room.
* suhuy looks at the girl.
* suhuy looks at the bartender.
<Naga> She gathers he skirts and prepares to greet the newcomer.
<Naga> “I need help,” he says to the room in general.
<witchboy> what are the soldiers doing?
<suhuy> does he appear hurt?
<Naga> the singing soldier says “we are off duty,” although the man did not appear to be speaking directly to them.
<Naga> he does not appear injured.
<Naga> his description…
<Naga> a loose, dirty tunic, tied around the waist with a length of rope. pants striped in yellow and violet. a violet headband stained with sweat.
<Naga> He has a longsword strapped to his back.
<witchboy> “Perhaps we can aid you…”
* suhuy rises and stands beside witchboy.
<Naga> “I am lost, and there is someone out there who wants to kill me…”
* suhuy “Who and why?
<Naga> the who is my father, the why is because I have gone against his wishes.
* witchboy chuckles.
* suhuy asks, “How so?”
<Naga> one of the gambling soldiers looks up with dark eyes, almost trancelike…
<Naga> “I know your father. I have spoken with him many times.”
<Naga> He snaps to reality and seems disturbed.
<Naga> the newcomer answers…
<Naga> “most of you here have spoken with my father from time to time”
<witchboy> “Who is your father?”
* witchboy steps closer.
<Naga> “he is known by many names to many people.”
* suhuy grips his dagger tighter.
<Naga> and he is outside this wretched building
<Naga> waiting for someone to invite him in.
<witchboy> “Suddnely this sounds rather ominous…”
* witchboy looks at Suhuy.
<Naga> the newcomer sits down.
* suhuy looks at witchboy.
* suhuy “Why don’t you invite him in and we can settle this…
<witchboy> “Might we join you?”
<Naga> the wind outside has died down to complete silence.
<Naga> “sit with me.”
* suhuy sits.
<Naga> “believe me, you do not want him in here.”
* suhuy “why, i don’t understand?”
* witchboy sits.
<Naga> If you have ever had a terrible dream, a horrifying and suffocating nightmare, you know what the relief of waking is like?”
<witchboy> “Many nights.”
<witchboy> “Too many…”
<Naga> “with him you will not awaken.”
<Naga> The singing soldier has gone quiet.
* suhuy scans the room
<Naga> He says “that’s a night for me lads. see you in the barracks in the morning.”
<Naga> the dice players nod to him.
<witchboy> Is there a window that gives out onto the street at all?
<witchboy> A peep hole in the door?
<Naga> The bartender starts to call to him as he leaves, but he cuts him off. “put it on my tab, Olson”
<Naga> The entire room is below ground level.
* suhuy asks, “What were your father’s wishes?”
<Naga> you cannot even see out the open door from within the room.
<Naga> “My fathers desire is for me to take up his work, but I do not have the desire for it.”
<witchboy> “Could your father not find someone else?”
<suhuy> “what is his work?”
<Naga> he looks balefully at the singing soldier as he leaves.
<Naga> “He is responsible for destroying peoples lives.”
<Naga> He is very good at it.”
<suhuy> “in what manner?”
<suhuy> “do you mean killing?”
<Naga> “he finds those with promise or talent, and twists them to misuse it.”
<Naga> “they in turn twist others.”
* witchboy takes a swig. “Hmm…”
<Naga> “sometimes. he is very good at knowing what drives people.”
<Naga> from just outside the door there is a sound of struggle…
<Naga> …the scraping of boots and a bumping on the wall.
* suhuy rises and approaches staircase.
<Naga> no screams or grunts.
<Naga> then breaking bones and silence.
* witchboy stands.
* suhuy looks back at table.
* suhuy goes to door.
<Naga> from the base of the stairs you can see up to the door, and you see…
* witchboy whispers “Is your father violent?”
<Naga> the door open a tiny bit, and someting like dark clouds whirling around.
<Naga> “Yes, when he is angry he can be very violent.”
* suhuy backs away.
<Naga> The singing soldier’s helm bounces down the stairs and lands at the bottom, the head is still inside.
* suhuy looks at the doorway.
<Naga> outside, a hollow, moaning renditin of the singing soldier’s song begins.
* suhuy has his dagger out.
<witchboy> “Oh my god…”
<Naga> sung by many voices at once.
* suhuy “what in the name of god?”
* witchboy draws his mother’s sword, a blade of polished copper.
<witchboy> A green gem flashes from the pommel.
<Naga> the barmaid passes out straight away when she sees the head, not even a scream.
* suhuy eyes the green gem.
<Naga> the newcomer seems nonplussed.
* suhuy eyes the other soldiers ready to give way.
* witchboy mounts the stairs.
<Naga> Outside the singing builds in pitch…
* witchboy turns back to the room. “How should I approach him?”
<Naga> and in the verse where a maiden is deflowered, witchboy’s name is put in its place.
<witchboy> “Your father, that is…”
<witchboy> “I have some experience with spirits and Things. And some with the Dead…”
* suhuy “he wants to deflower you?”
* witchboy frowns. “Much too late for that.”
<Naga> “he will probably kill anyone who goes through that door, but once his temper is down he will be easier to talk to.”
* suhuy looks serious.
<witchboy> “Hmm… Perhaps discretion is the way, then.”
* suhuy “why kill the soldier?”
* witchboy returns to the table.
* suhuy still eyes the other soldiers.
<Naga> One of the gambling soldiers walks over to the table.
<Naga> “If you are what he wants. I say we throw you out to him! He has no quarrel with us!
* witchboy pushes his sword down into the scabbard and pulls his cloak tightly about him again.
<witchboy> (to whom does he speak?)
<Naga> the newcomer.
* suhuy readies himself to throw the dagger if necessary.
<Naga> **brb – phone call**
<witchboy> “Okay, let’s get in character.”
<Naga> the newcomer looks at the soldier, and a very subtle transformation begins.
<Naga> his eyes seem to grow darker…
* witchboy raises his brows.
<suhuy> who transforms?
<Naga> his chin longer…
<Naga> his cheeks rise a slight bit
<witchboy> (the soldier?)
<Naga> the newcomer.
* witchboy stands and takes on a serious expression.
<Naga> the soldier balks. what he sees is aparently different than what you are seeing.
* suhuy “what the hell?”
<Naga> they stare at each other for a moment, and the soldier backs away.
<witchboy> “What is this?”
<witchboy> “Going to meet your father head on?”
<Naga> “it must be really hot on here,” he says. “I am starting to see things. Cheap grog…”
* witchboy seems less disturbed by the occurrence than he should be.
<Naga> The newcomer relaxes and its as if nothing changed.
* suhuy “what the hell are you?”
<Naga> “I am Lochlan.”
* witchboy nods. “Lochlan, I am called Witchboy, though I have had many names…”
* suhuy “What do you want?”
* witchboy takes a drink.
<Naga> “hello, witchboy. My father has never told me anything about you. I don’t think you have ever known him. Or he fears you.”
<witchboy> “I doubt I am feared by anyone such as he…”
* suhuy listens intently.
<Naga> I can see that you are allied, perhaps unknowingly, with my fathers enemies.”
* suhuy “I have angered him?”
<Naga> “and you,” he looks at suhuy, “what is your name?”
<Naga> “I am the only one who has angered him.”
<witchboy> “Hmm…I have some alliance with spirits, as I have said. But this is a minor thing.”
* suhuy “i am suhuy, a rim lord in a land of chaos.
<witchboy> “You father seems far beyond my scope…judging from this event.”
<Naga> some hot coals drop from the chimney into the ashes of the fire.
<Naga> they appear to be flaming bones.
<witchboy> “Haha! I must see your father with my own eyes…”
* witchboy stands, takes a last drink and wipes his hands on his cloak.
<witchboy> “I would speak with him…”
* suhuy “your father is a persistent one.”
<Naga> “you have seen him. When you see the acts commited in war…
<Naga> when you see a father beat his child to death…
* suhuy ” what name does he answer to?”
<witchboy> “He seemed real enough tonight…just outside out door.”
<witchboy> “Yet you speak abstractly.”
<Naga> he answers to your own name, if you intend to call him. he will come.
<Naga> you must really want to see him.
* suhuy says, “then shall we call him forth,” to witchboy
<witchboy> “Let’s step outside…”
<Naga> That soldier died because he had given a part of himself to my father, and father took what what his.
* suhuy rises and heads for the door.
* witchboy follows.
<Naga> when you look up at the door, it is blowing back and forth in a gentle breeze.
<Naga> nothing but blackness beyond,
<Naga> and the stairs are slippery with blood.
<witchboy> I mount the stair carefully.
* suhuy carefully proceeds.
<Naga> when you reach the top, a warm fetid breeze greets you.
<witchboy> I step out into the night air.
<Naga> the darkness outside it absolute, but your other senses scream that the bar is now in a different place.
* suhuy draws his sword and transfers his dagger to his left hand.
* suhuy steps out also.
<Naga> Wandering suddenly from the darkness is a young girl, apparently blind, carring a bundle of cloth.
<witchboy> “We have been relocated somehow.”
* suhuy “do you need help lady?”
<Naga> She carries the bundle close to her chest and speaks gently to it.
<Naga> …baby talk.
* suhuy approaches.
<Naga> around the baby are tendrils of black mist, but they do not touch it.
* suhuy “you should not be out it is not safe lady.”
<witchboy> “An odd childe.”
<Naga> she stops and turns to face suhuy.
* suhuy looks.
<Naga> in the bundle is a tiny infant. blue and bloated.
<suhuy> is it alive?
<Naga> “my baby has been quiet for some time. can you tell me if he is all right?”
<Naga> it does not seem to be.
* witchboy turns away, looking into the night.
* suhuy “lady, are you daft the child is dead!”
<Naga> she seems stunned.
<Naga> the infant open yellow eyes and looks at both of you.
* suhuy “where are you going ma’am?”
<Naga> “you wanted to see me?” it asks.
* suhuy “shit.”
* suhuy leaps back stunned.
<Naga> the young woman begins sobbing.
<witchboy> “Your son does not want to drink from this cup…”
<witchboy> “He asks that you take it away.”
* suhuy stands speechless.
<Naga> “you are also my son.”
<Naga> “you are both my children.”
<suhuy> to whom does he speak?
<suhuy> never mind.
* suhuy “are you the father?”
<Naga> The girl cradles the infant, and begins singing to it in a broken voice.
<Naga> “yes, I am the one you came here to see.”
<witchboy> “Perhaps, but I was referring to Lochlan…” I grit my teeth at the singing sounds.
<Naga> I can disown Lochlan, if one of you would like to take his birthright.”
* suhuy “no, i dont think that will work either.”
<Naga> He opens the girls blouse and begins to suckle.
<witchboy> “My freedom is all I have, lord.”
<Naga> she groans in ecstasy.
<Naga> “you suhuy, do you have ambition?”
* suhuy “do not all men?”
<Naga> Kill Lochlan, and I will give you limitless power.
* witchboy smirks.
<witchboy> “I have heard this offer before.”
<Naga> he begins to climb up his “mothers” blouse, toward her throat.
* suhuy “and what chains will this power leave me with?”
* suhuy looks at witchboy for help.
<Naga> “none, my son.”
<Naga> “you hesitate…”
<witchboy> “Not surprisingly.”
* suhuy “why would i do this thing when he has done me no wrong?”
* suhuy “my ambitions are not that strong.”
<Naga> How do you know he has done you no wrong?
<witchboy> “You would kill your son for exerting his independence?”
<witchboy> “Is your worldview so ironclad?”
<Naga> Inside the bar behind you, you hear screams of pain and crashing blows.
* suhuy says, “to my knowledge he has done me no wrong…if you no otherwise then give me proof.”
<Naga> the twisted infant smiles.
* suhuy turns toward bar.
* witchboy looks toward the bar door.
<Naga> the sounds of struggle die down and all is silent again. except for the weeping mother.
<witchboy> I dash back into the bar.
* suhuy follows.
<witchboy> I survey the bar from the head of the stair.
<Naga> the soldiers and Olson lay amid a pool of their own brains and blood.
<suhuy> what of the girl?
<witchboy> “What has happened?” I shout.
<Naga> Lochlan is crouched in the corner, and the serving girl is nearing him with a wicked sword clenched in her fists.
<Naga> She is splattered with blood.
<witchboy> “Lochlan, is this your father’s doing?”
<Naga> They are transfixed on each other, and do not reply.
* suhuy hurls the dagger at him.
<witchboy> “Perhaps the girl is possessed?!”
<Naga> the dagger strikes home, and locklan tumbles forward.
<witchboy> I interpose myself between his fallen body and the girl.
<Naga> yes, but the moment he hits the ground, you see that it is the serving girl…
<Naga> and the girl is Lochlan.
<Naga> …still holding the wicked longsword.
<witchboy> I ask slowly, “You have slain them all?”
* suhuy “what the hell?!”
<Naga> He does not answer, he just turns a balefull gaze toward you.
<witchboy> I whisper, “I accept your offer,” and draw my mother’s copper-bladed sword.
* suhuy approaches to retrieve the dagger.
<naga> (privately, to witchboy) a surge of power comes into your arms.
<witchboy> I strike at Lochlan with great rage.
<Naga> Lochlan attempts to parry the blow, and is partialy succesfull, but he is still driven back to the wall.
<Naga> suhuy has recovered the dagger.
<Naga> Outside an infant laughs.
<witchboy> I sweep high with the blade, cutting at his face.
* suhuy looks for an opening to throw dagger.
<Naga> Lochlan’s blade is flung away with the force of the blow. The dagger flies in and imbeds itself deep in his chest, and Witchboy’s copper blade cleaves the face fom chin to cheek…
<Naga> He drops to his knees, face a ruined mass, coughing blood.
* witchboy strikes for a decapitating blow.
* suhuy “die fiend!”
<Naga> the head rolls away.
* suhuy approaches the bar for a flamable liquid.
<witchboy> I seize the head by the hair and carry it toward the door.
<Naga> there are many bottles of brandy behind the bar.
* suhuy pours liquid on the body and set it a fire with coals from the fire.
<Naga> There is a burst of flame, and the body burns unnaturally bright.
<witchboy> I walk up the steps.
* suhuy follows witchboy.
<Naga> at the top, the bundle lays in the mud, and the woman stands mutely, drained.
<witchboy> I toss the head to the ground.
<Naga> (privately, to witchboy) “She is yours, my son. do with her what you will.”
* suhuy “lord we have done as you requested…”
<witchboy> “I want her not.”
<Naga> the fetid breeze begins to fade.
<Naga> a dim awareness of the city that was there before begins to return.
* suhuy approaches the bundle.
<witchboy> “I wonder where we were…”
<witchboy> “I am sure I will never know.”
<Naga> The youn girl wanders away, crying.
<witchboy> “Death and butchery, the world over.”
<Naga> The bundle contains nothing but rags.
* suhuy stands confused.
* witchboy turns to watch the tavern burn.
* suhuy looks for city guards.
<Naga> As the sun rises, watchmen rush toward the burning building.
* suhuy “i suggest we leave.”
* (privately, to naga) witchboy begins an incantation that will snap him back to the room atop his tower.
<Naga> witchboy’s lips move silently for a second…
<Naga> and then he is gone.
*** witchboy sets mode: -o witchboy
* suhuy clears out of the area.