Thursday, January 16, 2014

Bujilli: Episode 75

Previously...
The group has split-up. Sharisse and Gudrun have gone downstairs to deal with the MirrorBorn. Bujilli, Gnosiomandus and Leeja are using the new route formed by Bujilli's spell-tinkering to by-pass what was surely a trapped door. Now they go forth to confront the Master Oneirist Sprague...


Shattering glass. Screams. It sounded like the two young women were keeping themselves busy downstairs. Bujilli grinned. Those two had really come into their own. He was thankful for their friendship. It all could have gone so very, very differently. Choices and repercussions. Just like his old Uncle used to yell at him before a beating. He survived all that. And better. Much better. He'd learned the lesson and gone well beyond anything his Uncle could envision or imagine. Then he smelled the vomit. Yeah. Maybe he'd learned a lot, grown a lot, but he still had a long way to go. That's pretty much why he was here.

"You ready for this?" Gnosiomandus rolled his shoulders. Adjusted his grip on the fighting-wand. Glanced at Leeja.

She smiled. He shivered. Bujilli almost laughed.

"As ready as I'm going to be." he shifted the hand-axe into a more comfortable grip. It might have been Stril's a long time ago. It was his weapon now. And speaking of weapons. ///Machine?/// Bujilli tried to internalize his communication with the Counsel etched into his bones.

Active

///Good. Keep an eye on things for me. Especially those things that I can't see so well myself. Let me know if you spot anything I ought to know about.///

Engaged

Bujilli took a deep breath. Nodded. Stepped forward into the breach his spell had made in the wall. Gestured to Gnosiomandus to bring up the rear. Looked to Leeja, motioned for her to let him go first. she nodded, grudgingly. Then he broke into a run. The By-pass twisted upwards and to the left, then the right, zig-zagging at random for what felt like close to a mile. Bujilli slowed down to a trot. Leeja was keeping up with him easily. They waited for Gnosiomandus to catch-up before going any faster again.

The By-pass wound around, past, over, under and back again, again and again until finally they could see a
deep purple gloom filling the air ahead. At first it had the look of a curtain of mist at the foot of a waterfall. As they drew closer it took on a thicker, heavier appearance. Gelatinous purple light.

It was sluggishly beginning to seep downwards into the breach-path created by Bujilli's spell.

///Machine?///

Analyzing...

"Analyze faster damn it!" Bujilli hissed. Stopped. Watched the purple stuff.

"What?" Leeja touched his shoulder.

"I'm fine. The machine-spirit is figuring out what this stuff up ahead might be."

"Oh." She looked back at Gnosiomandus; "We should probably let him get caught-up with us again anyhow."

Terminus-Point of Breach-Path Saturated by Stratified Oneiroplasm

"That purply-stuff up ahead is some sort of dreamstuff."

"Wonderful."

"What did you expect?" Gnosiomandus kept going. Leaving them behind for a change; "It's the stuff that dreams are made of--Sprague's a Master Oneirist. I expected him to be prepared for our little home invasion. I would have been disappointed if he hadn't been..."

"So what do we do now?" Bujilli jogged up beside Gnosiomandus.

"Depends."

"On what?"

"What do you want to do?"

"You're not much of a mentor."

"You're not much of a student," Gnosiomandus laughed; "You haven't even officially attended a single class and you've already picked a fight with one of the senior instructors, not to mention all that business with Hedrard and Mistress Eberhard..."

"I did what I thought was the right thing..."

"No doubt. Then there's Sharisse. And Gudrun. And Leeja, of course...and Unfred..."

"Funny time to start criticizing my decisions--"

"No criticism intended. I'm telling you that you do just fine making your own decisions. I'm not interested in meddling. I'm here to help out as need-be. You're the one who should keep on making the decisions."

"So you approve?"

"Who cares? You don't need my approval, nor anyone else's, at least not until Finals."

"Fine. This stuff, this Oneiroplasm up ahead; I've run into something like this back under Zormur's Palace. I'm going to cast Oneiric Bubble and you both stay close behind me. It should let us move through this dreamstuff a little easier."

He cast the spell effortlessly. It was becoming extremely familiar to him. He'd used it so many times. It was comfortable.

The spell formed a glistening, translucent sphere around all three of them. It rolled forward as they moved. their footsteps echoed strangely inside the bubble.

They moved up to the bleeding edge of the purplish-matter. Bujilli pushed the bubble forward. The Oneiroplasm parted sloppily before the bubble's scintillating outer-surface. He pushed harder. Stepped forward. Kept moving.

The dreamstuff wriggled, squished, gulped, but couldn't--or didn't--restrict their movement.

They entered a boudoir. The walls were hung in black velvet. The bed was huge, carved from exotic woods and luxuriously covered with expensive linens. Very classy. Tasteful. Just as Bujilli had expected. Just like the man asleep on the bed.

"Sprague." Bujilli pushed closer. The Master Oneirist was asleep. His face was anything but peaceful. He was caught in the middle of a silent scream. Trapped. Imprisoned.

The purple Oneiroplasm hardened. Darkened.

Bujilli reached out. Touched the inner surface of the Bubble. He caught flickering impressions of things flashing through the Oneiroplasm. Someone walled-up in a dark and dismal basement. A young girl chained-up inside an attic closet. A boy, his face horribly acid-eaten, bound to his rickety too-small crib with barbed wire. One after another. Dozens. All Dreamers. All prisoners.

Whomever did this was drawing upon the collective nightmares of dozens of prisoners.

The Oneiroplasm darkened. Quivered violently. Bujilli looked out at the room once more, before it got too much darker. There. A mirror. He grabbed Gnosiomandus by the shoulder and pointed.

"Scheiss! That mirror is undraped."

"And how is that significant?" Bujilli started considering his repertoire of spells.

"All mirrors are covered in Wermspittle. It's not just one of the oldest laws, it's a matter of survival. Things come through mirrors..." Leeja stopped in mid explanation. Looked to Gnosiomandus. Closed her eyes. Unsheathed her stilletto.

"Part of what drew the founders of the Academy to this place, all those Adjacent Worlds, especially all the Dead Worlds surrounding Wermspittle, also has some sort of effect on mirrors--"

"These Mirrorborn you said were downstairs?"

"Yes. Warped replicas, simulacras, doubles. There's a whole weird ecology of inverse and perverse things that gain access to this place through mirrors. Not all of them, but enough to make the things dangerous, hence the law."

"So then..."

Gnosiomandus stared down at Sprague's nightmare-trapped form.

"Whomever it was that you've been dealing with...it wasn't Sprague..."

Someone clapped their hands in appreciation. They stood near the door to the boudoir. Golden light streamed in from the room beyond. There was a lovely roaring blaze going in the fireplace. It was fed by scores of old manuscripts, books, portfolios.

"You might say that I'm his replacement. At the risk of sounding immodest, I like to think that I'm something of an improvement." Not-Sprague bowed sarcastically. Blew Leeja a rakish kiss. Smiled devilishly. Gestured.

Warning

The Oneiroplasm went black...


What spell was Bujilli considering when things went black? 

Counsel can only respond to threats/observations based on Bujilli's initiative...so in this case, with his lower roll, it wasn't nearly as effective as he might have liked.

The Oneiroplasm has thickened, reducing everyone's Movement to half the normal rate. Visibility is limited to 5' or less. They can hear nothing outside the Oneiric Bubble at this time, only the echoes of their own footsteps.

There is plenty of air, the Bubble is air-permeable by default.

Bujilli, Leeja and Gnosiomandus all three need to roll a Save versus Spells. See p. 55 of Labyrinth Lord for the Tables. Bujilli and Leeja both need to roll an 8 or higher on a D20. I'll roll for Gnosiomandus and post the result in the Comments.

Whatever happens next, we could use a few Initiative rolls for (1) Bujilli (2) Leeja, (3) Gnosiomandus, and if anyone cares to make one more for (4) Not-Sprague, and (5) Whomever Else Might Be Involved, that would be much appreciated.

Anyone/anything readers don't roll for, I will. As per usual.



Bujilli receives a +1 bonus to his Initiative, Leeja gets a +2 bonus. Gnosiomandus gets a -1 penalty for being distracted. The girls both receive +1 bonuses due to their DEX. (as per P. 50, Labyrinth Lord.)


As usual, anything readers don't roll for, I will roll.
  • We could use 3-4 D20 rolls,
  • 1 or 2 D100/D% rolls,
  • 3d4, just because...
What happens next is up to you, the readers.

You Decide!

Previous                                Next

Series Indexes
One | Two | Three | Four | Five | Six


About Bujilli (What is This?) | Who is Bujilli? | How to Play

Bujilli's Spells | Little Brown Journals | Loot Tally | House Rules

Episode Guides
Series One (Episodes 1-19)
Series Two (Episode 20-36)
Series Three (Episodes 37-49)
Series Four (Episodes 50-68)
Series Five (Episodes 69-99)
Series Six(Episodes 100-ongoing)

Labyrinth Lord   |   Advanced Edition Companion

10 comments:

  1. Using the dice widget in the side-bar, I rolled a '7' for Gnosiomandus' Save, which means he manages to resist the echoing nightmares caught-up within the Oneiroplasmic Mass filling Sprague's boudoir. So, there's some good news...

    ReplyDelete
  2. I rolled Saves with the widget in the sidebar and got 14 for Bujilli and 20 for Leeja.

    I'm on the edge of my seat again wanting to read what happens in the next episode!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Okay! thanks for rolling the Saves. I've made a note and will adjust things accordingly.

      Delete
  3. 3d4 = 6
    1d100 = 43

    Per the widget.

    If this area is oneiricly charged, would a zone of normality be useful? That may decrease the potential mutability of the area to dream manipulation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for those rolls. You raise a very good point re: Zone of Normality. Bujilli could easily modify this spell to address the mutability of the immediate surroundings, so yes, this might prove very useful...

      Delete
  4. Second attempt at commenting. I'm late to the party, but have reading through the archives and enjoying it.

    I made some initiative rolls:
    Bujilli 2+1 for a total of 3
    Gnosiomandus 2-1 for a total of 1
    Leeja 5+2 for a total of 7

    As for a course of action, is it possible to move as a group, within the relative safety of the Oneiric Bubble, to Sprague's bed? Could Bujilli wake him or spirit him away?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. First off, Welcome to the party! No one is really late to this game, as it keeps on going, especially now that we have the computer back from the shop. We expect Bujilli to continue for a while, as long as people show an interest. We're editing the earlier installments into a set of eBooks, and there will be some more indexes, etc. shortly. We'll be updating the links, fixing a few more things in the earlier episodes as well. So all in all, this is a good time to join in!

      Secondly, we've had some trouble with the comments, and are trying a different setting now. We've also had some weirdness with the 'Contact Us' page, so we're considering just posting an email address on the blog and letting readers contact us directly.

      Enough of that.

      Thanks for the Initiative rolls. I've noted these and will use them for the next episode.

      RE: Move as a group--Yes. This will be no problem. Moving away from the bed will be more difficult as the Oneiroplasm hardens and darkens. As to waking Sprague up, that will require breaking or unravelling the spell(s) currently confining him to the bed. Removing Sprague's body would be an option...but it would not necessarily remove him from the spell(s), and doing so might prove more problematic that addressing the spell(s) first. Good question!

      Delete
  5. I like BaronOpal's suggestion to use Zone of Normality and otiredbeacon's suggestion to move toward Sprague and would like to combine them. If they can get close enough to Sprague he could be included in the area of effect for Zone of Normality, hopefully giving him a chance to lessen or break the control of the not-Sprague.

    If Leeja could cast Pale Shelter that might help as well, especially if any Saves need to be re-rolled.

    Bujilli needs to know who they're dealing with. Can Counsel provide any details about not-Sprague (species, point of origin, physically present or projection, etc.)? Does Gnosiomandus recognize him / it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Moving toward Sprague on-the-bed, then using Zone of Normality to lessen or attempt to break the spell(s) influencing Sprague sounds like a good synthesis of all three commenters' ideas.

      Delete
    2. Leeja could cast Pale Shelter. Sometimes it helps to re-roll those Saves. That is a good idea.

      RE: Counsel, remember that Counsel needs access to databases that are not necessarily present in Wermspittle, or at least not as easily/readily accessed as they might be elsewhere. Counsel is a conscious machine imprinted upon Bujilli's bones. Some would call it an AI, others a spirit, whatever. It has limitations based upon whomever it is bound to, and it draws upon the knowledge-base of its host as much as anything else, and it presents things in a manner deemed most appropriate to the host. That said, Counsel has a base chance to have some relevant data handy, perhaps something akin to a Thief's 'Read Scrolls,' or a Bard's 'Lore' ability. I'll post the details for Counsel before next week, but for now I'll roll for things and see what Counsel can ascertain about Not-Sprague.

      RE: Gnosiomandus is all too familiar with Simulacra, Mirrorborn, Dobblekin, and other such things; they are a thriving aspect of the Unnatural Philosophies and Sciences with which he is personally concerned. If he doesn't immediately identify the nature of the Not-sprague, it won't be for lack of background or ability, but rather some other, outside interference...

      Delete

Thanks for your comment. We value your feedback and appreciate your support of our efforts.

ShareThis