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Author Topic: More Backroom Dealings  (Read 12051 times)

Drakilian

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More Backroom Dealings
« on: July 11, 2016, 03:14:00 pm »

8th of August, 1202; 2:44am
Along the canal, near the Island of San Michele
The Domain of Narses
Prince of Venice


Anton and Steeple walked along the canal as lovers might, to better disguise their predatory nature. After the inconsequential small talk and courtesies have been exchanged, the two get to more serious matters, leaning over the rails of a bridge arching over the canal as the occasional gondola passes under them.
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #1 on: July 11, 2016, 05:05:21 pm »

'I know I'm of the lighter build,' Steeple complained to Prince Maurice, 'but why do I always have to be the frump?'

Then to Anton he says, "this looks like a fair enough spot, unless you know one better."

"I don't see how darkness, while it blinds the eyes, would blind the ears as well, but I certainly look forward to being enlightened on the matter."
« Last Edit: July 11, 2016, 05:09:15 pm by BerkaZerka »
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2016, 06:27:08 pm »

Anton grins.
"What we, the Lasombra summon, is not simple darkness, Steeple. It is...primordial, beyond mortal concepts." Anton explains, as he draws upon the abyss.

"We do not play with shadows, Malkavian. We manipulate that from which all our power originates. Perhaps one day you shall see it. It is... magnificent."

He proceeds to shape the darkness around the two, so that they can still speak to each other.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2016, 07:11:38 pm »

Anton succeeds in creating a formless shroud that envelops the two, leaving them both in absolute darkness.

Steeple is made extremely uncomfortable, as every alarm bell he has starts screaming - he can't feel anything outside of this globule of abyssal shadow, he can feel the hunger behind this almost sentient darkness and its desire for him.

"Oh now, well, this isn't exactly pleasant," says Maurice.
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2016, 09:23:25 pm »

"This is not the absence of light," Steeple says in awe, "It is the living embodiment of the opposite."

"And I do believe it wishes to sup on my marrow... or worse."

The darkness was unnerving, but Steeple's will was iron.

'At least it doesn't reek like the innards of that nasty Vozhd!' he thinks to his Prince.

Then turning to Anton - or really, just turning to where he imagines Anton would be - he begins, "What do the Lasombra think of the Tremere? And more importantly, what do you think of them?"
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2016, 10:12:11 pm »

"You should get used to it's feeling, Steeple. It is where we shall all return to, once our purpose is completed." Anton states.

"As for the usurpers, the Lasombra are mixed. We are not a unified clan, Steepe. I care not for the Tzmisce or for them, Steeple. What does Lord Radu require?"
« Last Edit: July 11, 2016, 10:13:43 pm by Aman »
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2016, 12:14:10 pm »

"Lord Radu supports the direct assault, as I voiced on his behalf at the convene; though he will happily settle for the Egypt gambit as well. Either option serves his purpose."

"He wants the war, to distract everyone's attention from the Transylvanian region, to set his clan fully against the Tremere and wipe them out, while nobody is looking."

"I'm all for this conflict myself - both the human war against the defilers of Jerusalem - and a show down between the Tremere and the TeetZees."

"Radu is powerful, but Tremere has been building immense power in anticipation of this attack."

"It should be an epic conflict, with mass loss on both sides! It could very well present opportunity for another Clan to step in and clean up the mess afterwards."
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2016, 12:55:48 pm »

Anton nods.
"I was wondering why Radu would have cared for this crusade. He did not seem the religious type." Anton says.

"I suspect that is the Venture's goal then, as the Black Cross has recently been attempting to gain control over my domain."

"Do you intend to stake a claim?"
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2016, 02:03:31 pm »

"Me? No, I'm not that big a thinker," Steeple answers simply, "though I wouldn't mind using the opportunity to strike down that rotten Sanchez!"

"Err... Mitru the False Saint (or something), I believe you call him. Though it's not surprising that hardly anyone else knows his true name."

"At any rate, I wish to taste of his heart's blood."

"As you well know, one must be careful who one brings into themselves in such a way; and I have considered this for some time."

"It is why I am not yet as close to Caine as you, Kiril, Heldric, and pretty much everyone else in the Convene. For something so taboo as diablerie, everyone is sure up to their necks in it, haha!"

"For now though, I am ready to help you strengthen your position here, in any way you see fit - as long as it doesn't directly screw over our good friend Heldric."

"In exchange, I would hope that you would consider aiding me against Sanchez, when the time is right."
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2016, 02:07:41 pm »

It will come as much of a shock to Anton that Kiril has commited diablerie - he had no idea his brother had engaged in such activities.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2016, 03:57:20 pm »

"Kiril has committed dialblerie?" Anton asks, shocked. He didnt think Kiril had it in him. Such a thing seemed mych too dark for the nobleman. It must run in the blood then.

"As I said before, I would be glad to assist in eliminating the false saint. He acts in place of the good lord, and draws his flock away. If you wish to drink of his blood, so be it. I would gladly take assistance in strengthening my hold."

"What shall you do if Radu falls in this fight against the Tremere?"
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2016, 05:22:29 pm »

"Should Tihuta Pass become available, I will stake a claim to it myself. I am sure that if I had the right backing, the others would come to accept me as Prince there."

"I am after all, the only Kindred in the area right now - and have already established an uncontested rule over it."

"Plus, I must admit, it has grown on me over the years. I would be loath to give it up."
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2016, 06:05:38 pm »

"The Tihuta Pass is in a very strategic place. Should you hold onto it, it will certainly serve you well, yes." Anton says.

"Steeple, should we align ourselves, know that I have hope to bring the Church into this land properly. This place is filled with pagans and worship of ancient demons. I wish to slay Mitru for a reason. I would not tolerate a Malkavian attempting to play prophet, yes?"
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #13 on: July 13, 2016, 11:08:45 am »

"A prophet of what? Pray tell?" Steeple asks, wondering what Anton was thinking, "But no; I haven't the ambition or even an idea of how to lead a following of any kind."

"I am strictly middle-management, as it were."

"And if I am to end up in abyssal nothingness such as this anyway, I might as well follow the lead of someone  well-accustomed to it already."

"(That's you BTW.)"

"Bring this supernal insight of yours to the land, in whatever form you think fitting. After all, proper 'Order' brings peace."
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2016, 12:10:57 pm »

"My kind of Order brings God, Steeple." Anton states, "But yes, that would certainly be agreeable."

"Killing Mitru would certainly upset whoever backs his hold. Do you know anything about the false saint?"
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #15 on: July 13, 2016, 01:41:31 pm »

"Only what we learned from Tybalt; and that he is Childe of Arnulf I believe."
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #16 on: July 13, 2016, 04:14:42 pm »

Anton nods.
"Ask around. I believe the Gangrel who was with us before was the childer of Arnulf. When you know more about the target, I will gladly accompany you to remove the threat."
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #17 on: July 13, 2016, 05:05:58 pm »

"Excellent!" Steeple replies.

"So, shall we head back then?"
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #18 on: July 13, 2016, 05:11:34 pm »

"Certainly." Anton says, dispersing the shadows.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #19 on: July 13, 2016, 06:16:54 pm »

It's right around then that Steeple senses (feeling the coming impact rather than hearing or seeing it), Maximus swooping in, slamming into Anton with enough force to break his collarbone, lifting the Lasombra out of the air and stunning him so completely that he finds himself unable to react before the massive stone monster holding him drops him from a height of nearly 50 feet back down into the water.

"Well, that was unexpected", Maurice says.

---

Anton lands with a violent splash near a passing gondola, nearly overturning the thing in his wake. He feels strangely numb, though he feels a slow fire begin to spread from his chest where a good part of his body has been shattered. The dull sound of the water invokes the peace he found in the abyss. He feels wildly disoriented, though he feels himself calming down quickly, not being entirely sure what just happened other that that it hurt, but reasserting control over his senses.

A swordsman must be perceptive, Gabor chides.

---

Maximus settles down heavily next to Steepleton, where he takes a knee.

"I'm sorry master, I would have attacked earlier if I knew he would cover you with those horrifying shadows! I only waited so long because I did not want to accidentally strike you."
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #20 on: July 13, 2016, 06:27:23 pm »

"You sound like Basilio." Anton says, summoning tendrils onto his shadows, and then healing himself. He gets out of the water, drawing his blade.

"Is it an Assasmite? Didn't feel like one." He wonders.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #21 on: July 13, 2016, 06:32:57 pm »

"You sound like Basilio." Anton says, summoning tendrils onto his shadows, and then healing himself. He gets out of the water, drawing his blade.

"Is it an Assasmite? Didn't feel like one." He wonders.

As Anton swims upwards he feels a score of strong hands grab hold of him and start to haul him onboard - he realizes it's the Gondola he almost overturned.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #22 on: July 13, 2016, 06:50:51 pm »

Anton dispels his tendrils, knowing that breaking the sixth law would be bad, and lets himself be dragged upward.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #23 on: July 13, 2016, 06:56:56 pm »

Anton looks around himself, identifying his rescuers.

At the poll was a man draped in a thick brown robe. With the full moon overhead Anton could clearly see that the robes were old and worn nearly threadbare. What startled him and forced his  attention was that as the man raised the poll his sleeve fell back revealing an arm the color of butter. It was unnaturally smooth and looked to be somehow both stretched and too small at the same time. There were no joints at the wrist or the long fingers, they simply bent as wet pasta might; putting into his mind a child's arm when it was still just a baby. A moment later he realized that the arm had the look of a pustule just about to pop from infection. At the end of each pudgy, distressed finger was a too-long jagged nail of a gray-green hue; when Steeple sees it from the bridge he almost wretches.

The thing’s other hand came up to put the sleeve right and it turned its head to look for witnesses to the scene.

When it turned its baleful eye to Steeple he sees a jaundiced eye with an iris the color of a livid blood-blister set into eye sockets that were sunken into a face that seemed to be on the verge of popping from the pressure beneath the skin. Its thin lips were puffy and looked to be torn, a single thin tusk piercing it from below.

For a second, he captures Anton and Steeple's attention both, and then both of the vampires feel their gazes sliding around to the others on the Gondola - for the leper was not alone, oh no, he was simply the least monstrous...

His compatriots sat, hissing with what Anton presumed to be laughter… or pain.

One’s face was nothing but a proboscis and a pair of eyes, its bruised color flesh looking to be little more than cracked parchment. Another was toothless; it’s left eye three times the size of its right; its head bald but for a few wisps of greenish hair, it’s nose was pushed back into its face as if crushed by something with extreme force. The only two teeth in its mouth were two great tusks that tore through its lips, leaving them ragged and loose around a gaping hole of a mouth. The last had eyes that sat far too low on its head, near its mouth. Its nose and mouth were mashed together into a hideous gash of blackish bare meat that reached from the crown of his head to its warped bifurcated chin. Its ‘mouth’ was a four pointed star filled with dozens of teeth. The three seemed to be enjoying themselves.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #24 on: July 13, 2016, 07:48:44 pm »

Anton frowns, unnerved from the spectacle.

"Uh, Thank you for the assistance." He says, looking around for the assassin.
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #25 on: July 13, 2016, 10:25:37 pm »

"Anton! Sorry about that!" Steeple calls down, "My bad!"

He chides Maximus loudly for his rash actions - "No Maximus! Bad! We do not attack friends!" But then whispers to the Gargoyle afterwards - "Very impressive all the same my faithful son! I forgive your error."

"Now just hope Prince Anton will..."

Looing at the collection of ugly down on the gondola, Steeple cannot help but remark - "Oh my! Gutka would be proud!"

« Last Edit: July 13, 2016, 10:36:05 pm by BerkaZerka »
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #26 on: July 14, 2016, 01:53:46 pm »

"Do not speak of it," the poleman says, his voice coming out as a raspy whisper.

"Get off," he pushes them closer to the edge, where Anton can disembark.

Anton hears a leathery flap as something veers off into the night. Activating his night sight, he sees a huge deformed stone man with wings flying away from Steeple - a Tremere Gargoyle?

---

"Friends? Friends would not envelop you in dangerous shadows! Ah, but he recovers, I shall prepare for another pass!"

Maximus flings himself into the air, catching his heavy body with his wings and propelling himself upwards into the air.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #27 on: July 14, 2016, 02:05:28 pm »

Anton disembarks, summoning darkness to cover him, and nightshades to distract the assassin. What did he do to piss off the Tremere now?
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #28 on: July 14, 2016, 02:25:56 pm »

"Gah! Maximus! No! No fighting in the city!" Steeple yells, shaking a fist into the air.

He then Teleports near Anton and tries to wave the stubborn Gargoyle off.

"Try not to hurt him too badly Anton," Steeple asks over his shoulder. "He's not Tremere - he's my apparently overprotective son!"

"He thinks you were attacking me - the thickskulled fool!"
« Last Edit: July 14, 2016, 02:27:55 pm by BerkaZerka »
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #29 on: July 16, 2016, 12:31:24 am »

As Anton watches, his night sight allowing him to keep track of the otherwise impressively silent gargoyle, the massive thing abruptly swerves midair and then up into a passing cloudbank, out of sight.

Training his eyes on the sky he searches for Steeple's "son". How the hell could something so big and heavy move like that anyway?

A lesson to be learned in his movements. Subtelty, Anton, is an invaluable skill.

Out of the corner of his eye Anton catches a flash, and sees the wisps of a broken cloud - and then Maximus, hurtling towards him at terrifying speeds. Seeing him come down, Anton gains the impression that the gargoyle has absolutely no intention of stopping, and indeed, plans on destroying the whole boat. Even as he realizes this, the time to act grows vanishingly small...
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #30 on: July 16, 2016, 02:53:15 pm »

Using Quicken Sight, Steeple spots Maximus in his dive. "Great Scott! This is going to hurt!"

"Everyone off the boat!!!"

Steeple makes a dive for it...
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #31 on: July 16, 2016, 10:00:16 pm »

Ugh.

Anton jumps into the water, following steeple. This is getting ridiculous.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #32 on: July 16, 2016, 11:25:27 pm »

Just as it looks as if the lepers are about to have their boat destroyed, Maximus spreads his wings mid-dive, coming to as sudden a stop as a several thousand pound stone monster can come to by flapping its wings. The resulting blast of air is enough to violently push back the boat and noticeably lower the water level around Anton and Steeple, before it closes back over the two, sending large waves down the canal. Maximus hovers over the canal then, and he calls down.

"Master, the humans throw their waste into these canals, why would you jump into it? This is undignified! Or do you attempt to disguise your scent from the Dark One, as he tries to disguise his scent from me?"
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #33 on: July 16, 2016, 11:42:04 pm »

Knowing that this just won't stop unless he crumples the gargoyle, Anton pulls his nightshades to form another Anton off the canal. Once the gargoyle charges, he'll summon tentacles to grasp him
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #34 on: July 16, 2016, 11:44:44 pm »

"Master, why is he summoning shadows that look like him? Does he think I can't see him clearly right there, neck deep in the waste of humans with you?"
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #35 on: July 17, 2016, 12:20:53 am »

Having distracted the gargoyle with the seemingly random illusion, Anton summons dark steel to grapple him
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #36 on: July 17, 2016, 01:21:22 pm »

Steeple spits out a mouthful of sewage like a chunky brown fountain and tries another tactic to diffuse the situation with Maximus - "GLUB GLUB GLUB! I'M DROWNING! HELP ME MY SON! GLUB GLUB GLUB!"
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #37 on: July 24, 2016, 03:15:28 pm »

"But master, you do not need to brea-" Maximus' statement of the obvious is suddenly interrupted by Anton summoning 4 dark tendrils from within the folds of the gargoyle's wings, wrapping around his wings and constricting them to his body. The gargoyle struggles violently as soon as the tendrils apparate, seemingly in an attempt to get himself clear of the dark water, but he fails to clear it and instead strikes the wall of the canal, breaking a few chunks off before sinking into the water like, well, like a stone.

For a moment Anton revels in his victory, however it is shortlived - for he could never have seen the little dark furry blur that leaped from Maximus before he struck the water, not until the thing had already landed on his face, filling his nose with the pungent smell of damp rat fur. Minimus Ferrum sinks its teeth into Anton right eyebrow and tears it off while squeaking triumphantly.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #38 on: July 24, 2016, 03:25:55 pm »

Anton planned on torporing the Gargoyle, adding more tendrils and more tendrils to make sure the Gargoyle (and Steeple by extension) learnt it's farking lesson. But now it's a farking tiny rat. Cursing out, Anton grips his missing eyebrow, and releases his dark shadows to envelop the area.
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #39 on: July 24, 2016, 05:24:38 pm »

"Oh for crying out loud!" Steeple fumes, Teleporting to the side of the canal - wondering how on earth he's going to clean his clothes after all this.

"Hmm... Animate The Unmoving?" He asks, trying to move the muck and filth water off himself with blood magic.
« Last Edit: July 24, 2016, 05:27:03 pm by BerkaZerka »
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #40 on: July 24, 2016, 09:35:20 pm »

Little Minimus leaps from Anton's face onto Steeple's shoulder, just as the Tremere teleports himself out of the muck.

Darkness fills the filthy water but Anton's little quarry is already gone.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #41 on: July 24, 2016, 10:42:46 pm »

Once the rat is gone, Anton retracts his shrouds to close around him.
"Steeple, do you think you can calm down your gargoyle, or will I have to torpor the beast?" Anton asks
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #42 on: July 24, 2016, 10:53:06 pm »

"Oh, the impertinent whelp is not listening to me; And I shall have the most stern talking with him later," Steeple replies with a hint of irritation in his voice, "but for now, he needs to be taught a lesson."
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #43 on: July 24, 2016, 10:55:20 pm »

Anton lets the tendrils squish the gargoyle.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #44 on: July 24, 2016, 10:59:43 pm »

While Anton cannot see the tendrils, or Maximus through the pitch black (or in his case, cloudy white) water, he sends the command to his tendrils, assuming they are still there.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #45 on: July 24, 2016, 11:08:05 pm »

Anton shrugs
"Come Steeple. I fear our talk has now another topic."
He then attempts to leave the water, recloaking himself. Farking Gargoyle.
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #46 on: July 25, 2016, 10:52:54 am »

"Careful Anton," Steeple warns, scanning the water, "This is usually the part where they spring out least expected..."

"Another topic?" He then adds with a raised eyebrow.
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Drakilian

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #47 on: July 25, 2016, 02:03:56 pm »

There is hardly a ripple in the water to indicate the gargoyle's passing.

The lepers have vanished in a disturbingly unnoticeable escape from the gargoyle's little attack.

Anton gets out of the water unhindered.
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Not Aman

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #48 on: July 25, 2016, 02:17:13 pm »

Seeing nothing comes out from the deep to eat Anton, he nods, cloaking the two.
"Yes, another topic Steeple. Since when did you ingratiate yourself with the tremere?"
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BerkaZerka

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Re: More Backroom Dealings
« Reply #49 on: July 25, 2016, 06:17:52 pm »

"Ah, well then," Steeple answers slowly, "I really don't see how that matters, aside from the current little misunderstanding with my childe."

"After all, you already mentioned you have no fondness for them."

"I'll just say that they too (like the Lasambra) are not fully unified; and if one can prove be of use to one side or the other, their rewards are as grand as their vengeance upon those who usurp their secrets."

"And I have been quite the little usurper of late, hehehe."

Steeple sweeps his arm over to where the canal should be, could he see it - "I got my own Gargoyle Anton! Pretty cool, right?" ;D
« Last Edit: July 25, 2016, 06:20:04 pm by BerkaZerka »
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