Thursday, June 12, 2014

Bujilli: Episode 93

Previously...
While wandering through the Farm Market, Bujilli becomes aware that Lemuel needs his help urgently...

Leeja and Mishka find themselves confronted by a small band of Voormis...


The he felt it. Lemuel. The connection they shared was too deep to deny. Lemuel* was in trouble. The boy needed help.

Bujilli stood off to the side of a gaudily-painted wagon of radishes and considered what he should do. He could feel Lemuel's distress through their connection. A psychic bond had been established between the two of them when Bujilli had salvaged the young boy from the ravages of the vile transformation brought on by his abuse of Hard Candy, an insidious treat concocted from the White Powder. Lemuel had nearly dissolved into a Loathsome Mass, but Bujilli had intervened, had risked his own life and well-being to pull the boy back from the brink of dissolution.

When he had left Hedrard's workspace, she was about to stitch together some wermskin to help stabilize Lemuel's physical form, which now mostly consisted of glistening gelatinous goo. The last time Bujilli had seen Lemuel**, the boy was carrying the unconscious body of Master Sprague back to Hedrard's workspace. There had not been time to do much more than nod to one another, as very important things were going on all around them at the time.

Bujilli looked around his surroundings. He knew he was close to finding the answer, the missing piece of the puzzle that was Wermspittle...but it might as well be locked away in the heart of the moon for all the good it would do to stand around here in the cool spring rain hoping to spot some clue that would help him unravel things once and for all. Watching the farm children with their rickety one-way carts and make-shift stalls. Seeing the peddlers with their mushrooms, roots, and herbs. Hearing the calls and cries of the various mongers and merchants. The smells. The colors. The textures and racket, movement and motion; he knew he was close to the truth. Painfully close.

If he could just see what he was missing...

"Excuse me young sir." An old crone clutched Bujilli's shoulder to steady herself after bumping into him.

"Your pardon. I was lost in my thoughts..."

"Yes. You were." She cackled softly. Her hands whipped out. seized his forearm and slapped something hard and cold into the palm of his left hand. Then she continued on her way. He looked down at his hand. A thimble. Silver. Blood was welling up from his hand where he held the thing.

He looked up. The crone was lost in the milling crowd.

He looked at the thimble. It was engraved in Aklo, Franzik and Etrurian. The sides were all spirally. It wasn't really silver, more like silver-plated yellow metal. It was much heavier than he would have expected.

The blood on his hand receded like the tide going out on a beach. It was being absorbed into the thimble.

"AH! such a find! I offer you three goats and a chicken for it!" A fox-tailed goblin tugged on his arm, eagerly trying to get a better look at the thimble.

"Thief! She would steal your trinket for next to nothing. I offer you my dolly--it's eternal servitude will be yours if you but grant me ownership of yon bauble." A serpent-tongued goblin leered meaningfully at him from beneath her grimy bonnet. She was clutching a dirty and beat-up looking rag doll. A doll that had miscellaneous blades, nails and screws stitched, sewn and taped into its pudgy little fists.

"Boys don't like dolls you stupid little slut. Here; I'll give you six packets of seeds, three golden keys, a ticket to Madame Ishwalla's Dubious Boudoir, and this ring that I cut off of the very hand of Yaximillian Vargoom Himself after the battle of Karlogne. what do you say?" This goblin wore antique chain-mail that hung loosely on their too-long and stick-thin limbs. He had a fuzzy green face covered in warts and scars, with six or seven ear-rings stuck into each ear apparently at random and he was proffering a grotesquely over-sculpted and bejeweled ring that he could not believe anyone would ever willingly wear.

Bujilli closed his fingers over the thimble. He didn't have the thing for even a minute before the offers started rolling in...he wondered why...



Lemuel first appeared in Episode 21, fought with Bujilli in Episode 22, collapsed in the throes of a hideous transformation brought on by abuse of Hard Candy in Episode 23, was lent a helping hand by Bujilli in Episode 24, became something of a 'blood-brother' to Bujilli in Episode 25. We've seen Lemuel off and on since then. He seems to have made some significant progress in becoming more human and less a shapeless, loathsome mass of corruption.
** We last saw Lemuel in Episode 81.

Meanwhile...


Muishka pulled out her mother's pepperbox pistol and a wickedly serrated and wavy-bladed gutting knife. She was a Wanderer--they bought and sold luck, but rarely indulged in it themselves.

Leeja watched as the elevator continued downwards...maybe they could slip past unnoticed...the elevator didn't make that much noise...

One of the shaggy folk barked and pointed to the descending cage.

"Damn dog-mounting Voormis." Mishka cursed.

The elevator continued downward...maybe it would keep going. Leeja wasn't thrilled at the prospect of fighting a small band of these dog-snouted, hook-clawed little people. She was all but certain that they probably had friends near-by.

Mishka froze in mid curse.

Leeja extended her claws. Her hair lashed about like a cat's angry tail.

The machine stopped. The elevator door was ajar. The Voormis readied their spears and pruning hooks for a charge. Leeja rushed them instead. She dragged her claws through the shoulders and across the arms of the shaggy creatures, wounding as many as possible as quickly as possible. Once through their ranks she turned and snarled. Her gold-green eyes smoldered in the dim half-light of the landing. All six of the creatures were bloodied. One had dropped his weapon. Two were wide-eyed and looked ready to make a break for it. She charged right at those two, trilling her voice in a bloodcurdling sing-song ululation that would make a Mucoid squirm in fear.

The Voormis broke ranks. Three of them turned and ran. BANG! Mishka's pepperbox pistol discharged with a greenish flash.

One of the Voormis tried to assist its fellow back to its feet, the last one turned to face the thing in the shadows that Mishka had fired upon.

A bear.

"I am so glad that you missed." The bear squinted at them through a dusty monocle...


Bujilli seems to have been handed something special with this thimble; something special enough that three goblins have already made him offers for the thing. Should he accept one of those offers? (If so, which one?) Or should he see if he can get a better offer from a more reliable source? Or should he hang on to the thimble and get out of there before things turn ugly? (When goblins are involved, it's already well on the way to turning ugly...) He was about to decide whether to head back to the Academy, or to re-connect with Leeja, so we'll attend to that next Episode. Using a spell like Clairvoyance in the middle of a crowded market might not go over so well, so he needs to get going either way...

Leeja and Mishka have now seen the Middle Sized Bear. The Voormis are more scared of Leeja than the bear, now. 

Initiative: Roll 1d6 each for (1) Leeja, (2) Mishka, (3) The Middle Sized Bear, (4)The brave last Voormis standing, and (5) the rest of the Voormis.

Reaction: Now we need a Reaction roll for the Middle sized bear. Roll 2d6, and check the result against the Monster Reaction Table on p. 52 of Labyrinth Lord.

As always, if you have questions or suggestions let me know in the comments, or via email.

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

6 comments:

  1. Bujilli needs to hold on to that thing until he can get someone to tell him what it is.

    Initiate-wise, I got 3, 4, 4, 6, 3. Reaction roll was an 8.

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    1. One vote for discretion before avarice. Okay!
      Thanks for the die-rolls; I'll put them to good use.

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  2. I agree with Trey, don't sell or trade the thimble until more is known. Bujilli can read Aklo and Etrurian (per his character sheet). What does the thimble say, and does it say different things in the different languages? He also needs to get out of this spot and away from the goblins. Can Counsel map him a clear route in the direction of the Academy, based on where he's gone so far? Bujilli may also need to complete the Oneiric Bubble casting he started in Episode 92 ("A brief visualization of the first steps in the Oneiric Bubble spell kept the goblins from hassling him, though they did make rude gestures and one of them cast aspersion on his parentage in poorly inflected Etrurian. The goggle-eyed goblin went pale and ran away once he realized that Bujilli could understand Etrurian.") in order to move past the goblins now that he has more of their attention.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Okay. Yes, Bujilli can indeed read Etrurian and Aklo, I also have to add 1 or 2 more languages to the list on his sheet according to an old note I just found. We'll deal with the thimble in the next episode. Getting out of the busy, crowded market makes sense. Getting away from the pesky goblins makes more sense. Counsel can show him a map that leads back through territory he has already crossed. Oneiric Bubble would drive off the goblins, but would be inconvenient in the middle of the market--unless he wants to start something more involved like a spellcasting showdown. It will attract attention. Loads of it. Using the threat of the spell is all it takes to curtail a goblin's palavering, unless they are dead-set on getting their way, then it won't be enough to drive them off. A simple insult in Etrurian might do the trick, with a good CHAR Check on Bujilli's part. Or he could try to bluff them. Now that the goblins know that he speaks Etrurian, they are a bit leery of this hairy little guy...so it might work pretty well.

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  3. No one is tempted by that last goblin's offer? No one else wants to read the Bujili's adventure in the Dubious Boudoir? Ah well. Even if I'd prefer to see him trade the thimble away. I do agree, I'd like to know *what* exactly he's offering first.

    And I must be in a contrary mood. Since to me it would be a shame for Bujili to quit the market when neither he nor I am any the wiser as to why his gut lead him there? If he does leave I'm of the opinion it should be in haste to Lemuel's rescue and not to the Academy

    As for Leeja, if I'm reading Trey's initiative rolls right, it's the bravest Voormis that will go first. But depending on how the rest of the order shakes out, I'd vote for parlay with the bear! If a monocle isn't still some proof of civility, then I've no hope of ever learning how to navigate Wermspittle. Looking forward to tomorrow.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. First, thank you for the great comment. It's raining, I just got my coffee, and that was the first thing I read this morning. Apparently the offer of goats wasn't enough to tempt Bujilli, nor the prospect of delving into the libidinous mysteries of of the Dubious Boudoir. The thimble has been retained. For now. Today, in episode 94, we will learn more about the thimble and why it was handed to Bujilli in the middle of the Farm Market. The Seamstresses are making themselves known to Bujilli, and that opens a few doors he might not have realized were there all along.

      I agree; it would be a shame to leave the Market before Bujilli finds what he is looking for...unless he is now holding something that leads him to what he's after? Hmmm...and then there is the suspicious timing of Lemuel's peril--right at the moment Bujilli was about to make a Big Discovery. That stinks of divination, remote viewing, skrying, clairvoyance, or some sort of meddling...

      Lemuel is at the Academy, so you get both for one low price this time out. Of course he is not in a section of the main building that we've seen before, so that might count for something.

      As for Leeja, you are correct. The bravest Voormis will be the ones to go first. Of course they know about the Middle Sized Bear and that has some measure of influence on their actions/response. The Bear is very civilized, quite civil, speaks several languages (including Franzik, Pruztian, and Etrurian/Ylgrian) and has been known to consult with lesser mammals for a modest fee...

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