On the Shoulders of Giants
Uda's Diary Pt 4
Been about a month and boy have we been busy- Delun got back from Dragon King Rock and has been training his New Palanquin Army with all the fancy tactics he learned over there. I’ve been touring the other cities and opening them up to a future alliance. Been good to go out and meet people- the folks in Y’danna are a wierd lot, just super laid back about everything. Not sure I’ve really got a grip on how they tick, but they seem friendly enough. Over in Volivat they’re a bit more at my speed; they’re totally into the wonders of the past ages, so it should be an easy sell to get them on board with the glorious new world we’re gonna make. Apparently they do some wierd thing where they make people with a whole fistful of different parents pitching in so that the kids are really strong/smart/whatever. Growing up with the circus was like having a dozen different parents, so it seem like a pretty sensible idea to me. Looking forward to having a dance with some of these super-peeps so I can show them how much further the sun’s light can take them.
Saw a light in the northwest this morning. Blossom says its coming from a fire in the forest- must be a heck of a blaze to light our horizon so worth checking out. Delun is a bit grumpy about getting pulled into another tangle, but I think he knows it’s for the best really.
Looks like the Tepet legion had a heck of a fight with the beastfolk and now they’re blasting a permanent path right through the forest. Blossom says it’s some sort of clever alchemy thing that turns wood straight into fire. Sounds like the sort of thing that could go pretty wrong to me, but I guess the realm savants know what they’re about. The legion itself seems to have hared off in good order (according to Delun anyhow- it’s all just blood and bootprints to me) but looks like their war-armour got dragged off into the forest by that Ma-Ha-Suchi character. We’re gonna take a closer look.
Okay, so that guy was a) mega gross to look at b) totally nutso and c) a jerk. He was still stomping on the ‘strider when we showed up, but it was setting itself on fire to stop him finishing it off. Not the worse plan in the world, I guess. Anyhow we rocked up all friendly and let him know the score, and he was all like ’people can only get stronger through suffering’ and ‘nice city you got there, muhahaha’. Anyhow suffice to say that even Delun wasn’t in the mood to put up with that kind of dangerous crazy so we kicked his ass. Monster man was pretty tough, but fighting the giant robot suit must have taken it out of him a bit, cause he didn’t have enough puff to break through Delun’s defense and once Blossom stuck a few arrows in the baddy’s back, he did the whippy blade thing and shredded the guy. Finished him off with the old neck snap; this is kinda gross-weird but man the noise it makes is super satisfying. Don’t judge me!
Had a chat with General Old Tepet and she was thankful for the save, in that kinda pulling teeth way that the dragonbloods always seem to have when we’re nice to them. Anyhow we’ve invited her and her folks to the party at calibration and she said that the house would be sure to send some people along. Fingers crossed they’re not just assassins or they’re going to be super embarassed when we crush them in front of all the region’s dignataries. Anyhow best get back to work- got so much party planning to do! Sports, dancing, a tournament, cookery contests; the whole shebang!
Can’t write much now, too much to organise. Calibration is almost upon us and the first ships from our visitors are showing up. Ydanna has sent some old mystic who seems like they’re going to snooze through the whole thing, but Volivat seems a lot more promising: one of their ten-parent guys has come over and the dude is swole as hell. Looking forward to getting to know him a bit better but right now he’s off pestering Delun about the tournament details.
The dragon bloods have shown up now too. General Grumpy Tepet and a couple of the nobles from Kandathar. Apparently the delegation from their rivals fell sick before the trip, so at least we’re dealing with people who get things done. Momma dragon seems a bit prissy but I think we’ll be able to work on her daughter whilst she’s here. Anyway on with the show!
Oookay, had to do a bit of improvisation there when the Supreme Sorceror rocked up on one of the Titans. Man that thing looks sweet now, gold armour everywhere. Gem eyes. The whole shebang. Anyhow, managed to make sure she added to our thunder instead of stealing it so I think we’re all good (well except General Tepet who looks like she want to barf).
Sorcy is actually pretty fun when she lets her hair down. I guess it must be tough to meet folks when you’ve got an Empire to run. Anyhow I’m super glad we sent the invites; she’s having a ball and I just watched the Most Favoured get schooled at arm wrestling by Mister Ten-Dads. I’m definitely getting that guy over a table before he leaves. (Apparently he wants some sort of marriage thing sorted out too for an alliance…will have to get to know the guy a bit better.)
Okay, apparently we’re getting a divine visitation too. Blossom’s Shadow says that its bud Five Days Darkness is showing up. He’s like the Unconquered Sun’s Shadow and the god of Calibration, which sounds respectable but apparently he can’t get the Sun’s light on him which makes him sort of dodgy; all seems a bit complicated, I’ll save judgement for when I meet him.
So FDD makes a splashy entrance, says that Solars rule (fuck yeah!) and then dumps us into so sort of shadow realm…not exactly what I had in mind but could make for an interesting evening.
Long story short: Eff Diddy is horrible at running parties. There were folks dancing to demon-music until they turned into shadow beings. Naturally I danced them back to their senses. Next up was the drinking room, except that the booze made you forget everything so it was full of mindless husk-people. Urgh. I did my best to keep all our guests out of trouble so they all sat down and didn’t go too crazy on the drink.
Blossom apparently went to some sort of ‘reflection’ chamber and fell into a dragon or something? She wasn’t entirely clear but apparently it was very bad and she looked kind of scared about the whole thing.
Tracked down FDD in the feasting room and managed to convince him that he needed better experience at throwing parties before hauling people off to his spooky shadow realm. Apparently he used to have an old solar living here but the guy popped his clogs and he didn’t even notice. Dude is kind of an idiot to be honest.
With FDD on board Blossom and the Supreme Sorceror got us out of there and now we’re back to partying proper in New Palanquin. Thanks to their drinking I don’t think many of the guests even noticed or remembered what happened; probably for the best. Anyhow Five Days Darkness is gonna stick around and help judging contests for the holiday, and I’ve had Reed write him up some documentation so the folks in heaven know he’s got some backing as God of Calibration. He really needs some sensible friends so it’d be good to get him properly situated in Heaven.
Blossom wants us to hunt down whatever slippery fellow it was that evaded her in the Ebon Dragon’s room. Apparently she’s got his scent so as soon as we’re ready we’re all gonna try and track them down before they get up to mischief. I’ve asked the Supreme Sorceror to help out and she seems interested in learning what flavour of bad guy we’re dealing with here.
It’s been a fair old trek around the tree but it seems like the villain has found their way down to the circus. Sorcey and I are gonna check in with Babi and make sure everything’s alright and the others are going to circle the place and see if they can spot him.
Sorcey has suggested that we might be able to get them to reveal themselves by making them react differently to everyone else. Gonna hit the the stage and get the crowd pumped- anyone who doesn’t jump up and wanna improve themselves is probably a wrong ’un.
Okay, shit has got wierd. Blossom tried to kill the baddy but then Delun protected him. He just seems like some old guy but Bloss was pretty set on finishing him off. Took the opportunity to point out to her that if we’re gonna be offing people for being yozi-tainted then there ought to be someone else on her list too. She then went off the deep end and told Delun she was going to go burn down our orphanage. Not cool. Anyhow I got the crowd out of there and made sure to minimise the damage of their Chosen squabbling, and it seems like the bad guy got out during the rush.
Don’t think that anyone’s feeling too happy right now. Fingers crossed we’ll have a better day tomorrow.
Today has been better! The fighting tourney’s been fun to watch; the mortal matches showed some good talent and then we got on with the big leagues. Most Favoured took out Dame Crimson (messily) and then our own Kauri managed a hometown win against the Volivat champ by having the city half eat him. I’ve offered to arm wrestle him later so he can try a match of straight up strength.
Then Delun got to fight a mystery challenger…who turned out to be Octavian! The Quarter Prince put up a pretty good fight and his shout looks like it hurt a bit more than just our ears, but in the end he was no match for the Dawn. Booyah!
The last fight saw Shark-Faced Rava reduced to a weeping mess by a few whispered words from some martial artist pretty-boy. Not a pretty sight or a satisfying fight; may have to do something about that if he keeps it up.
I’m having my people keep an eye on this mystery woman in a fancy dress. She seems awfully knowledgeable about demons and watching her now in the cookery contest, it doesn’t seem likely that she’s a mortal sorceror- she’s giving the Lady from Kamthahar a run for her money. FDD didn’t even leave a drop of her Eastern Soup to go around.
Haven’t caught her up to any funny business yet, but better safe than sorry with a couple of yozi-corrupted on the loose.
Cookery contest wrapped up with the Lady Ophis taking the top prize, but not without having to really fight for it, thanks to the efforts of Mystery Chef. To be honest I’m not sure how it would have swung if Kasim wasn’t whispering in FDD’s ear, but I suspect our merchant prince has his eye more on trade relations than who brewed the meanest hooch.
Afterwards I tried to pin down Mystery Chef for a good long chat, but she just kinda vanished from right in front of me. Definitely up to no good.
OH FFS BLOSSOM! Apparently our Night Caste thought it was a great idea to invite a bunch of Sidereals to come in with a blank slate to deal with any threats they found in our city. And now she’s given permission apparently it’s going to be a hell of a problem to kick them back out again. I’ve send Maki off to Heaven to cancel their invitation but in the meantime we’ve got five assassins roaming around, looking for trouble. Great.
And now someone’s unleashed demons on our tree and they’ve already eaten a big old bite out of the trunk. Not sure whether it’s an attack itself or just a distraction tog get us out of the way, cause it sounds like things are kicking off on the top of the disk. I’m gonna stop the city falling over whilst the others go check it out. Gave them an alley oop and it was kinda satisfying to watch them go flying. Fingers crossed they manage to glide down to where they need to be.
Nox got here with his kiddies pretty sharpish and as soon as the tree was looking shipshape again I hauled arse up the trunk to catch up with the others. By the gold glow spillling over the edge I could tell Delun was putting up a fight and when I got their he was facing down all five of the star-chosen. Couple of archers, pretty boy, that mouthy war lady and some bum with a magic floaty disc thingy. Anyhow once I showed up they realised they’d better not mess, and lowered arms. It was only then that they realised that their target had slunk off. Apparently the infernal has disguised itself as Ophis Gesa…or they just tried to job our guest. In any case they ran off to try to hunt her down after I gave them a bit of a scolding.
Got back to the palace and talked with Kauri and she found out that their were two Gesa’s in the city. One on the disc and one down in the dock waters. Can’t have a guest drowning so I dove down there and hauled out the stone prison that she’d been locked in. Got her back to her mum and calmed the guests down, but now it looks like Delun or I will have to provide permanent security which is a bit of a drag. Sadly it seems that the baddy has now shifted to another form, so tracking him down isn’t going to be easy.
New day and chatted with Soupy over breakfast- she says that it might be possible to screw over the demon-chosen by putting some sort of circle around his boss, the Ebon Dragon. Anyhow we’re going to ask FDD to let us back into his place whilst the boat races are going on and see if she can’t work some mystic mojo on the wrong ’uns.
FDD and Delun are looking after the races (and keeping an eye out for our guests getting into trouble again) but he’s agreed to let us go ahead with the ritual. Wandered back to the meditation room and am trying not to look at the wierd black evil portal-thingy. Hopefully we can get this magic done pretty sharpish: Soupy is just cracking on with it now and I’m sure we’ll have this Dragon eating out of our hands in no time!
Well that went a wee bit wrong. Seems like Soupy’s circle didn’t really do the job at holding the dragon and moments later we were up to our armpits in scales and black goop. I got completely covered, so gross. Anyway we managed to beat it up in the end and drove it out of FDD’s house.
When we got back to the city it turns out that a massive tentacle had popped out of FDD’s back and started wrecking the place. Luckily Delun and Blossom were close enough to intervene and stop things from getting really messy. FDD was a bit the worse for wear, but now he’s all sparkly and shimmery instead of pitch black so I think that’s a definite good sign.
The Kings were a bit nervous that after such an eventful morning maybe we ought to reschedule their reveal, but I persuaded them not to worry and we’ve gone ahead with the ceremony. I’m looking forward to showing off them and their sport to the crowd- give them something to chew on besides our recent troubles. Apparently the siddies have done something to make the yozi-chosen stick out in the crowd so hopefully we’ll finally be able to off him too.
So a whole bunch of fireworks went off and Blossom and Delun went to hunt down the bad-guy. Seems like he did his shapeshifting thing again and managed to look like Blossom which was a bit awkward when Delun came around the corner and got the wrong end of the stick. Luckily I was watching through Blackbeak so I made sure the crowd weren’t paying attention to anything embarrassing. Then Blossom did that Eyebeam thingy that Soupy used before and that lit him up real good. Delun didn’t give him a second chance to sneak away and Blackbeak dived down to finish him off.
With that sorted we were able to wrap up the unveiling ceremony without any more problems and got on with showing off the new game the Kings have had folks practicing. Looks pretty fun, I’ll have to give it a go myself sometime.
That evening we had a little party with the top nobs. I spend most of it chatting with Soupy, but kept my eye on everyone else. I think good relations with Volivat should be a done deal if Jet is a fair indicator of his people. Ydanna might be a harder sell- the mystic they sent didn’t seem to want anything except to go home. The dragonbloods are gonna be more of an issue. Blossom seems to have taken Gesa under her wing (Oh dear!) and her mum doesn’t seem to want much to do with us except that they’re worried now that the path to the realm is being opened up. Will have to see if there’s anything more we can do before the celebration wraps up.
Morning brought the next martial arts rounds and disappointingly Kauri got taken out by the blue masked pretty-boy. Will have to count on Delun to wipe out the Most Favoured and then take him down.
Session 46 & 47
Wow that was a good fight! Delun and Hunter went all out against each other and drenched the stands in blood, goo and tentacle bits. Our man won in the end of course and now Saucy is stuck doing a big favour for Blossom; that’s what happens when you bet against the home team!
Apparently the pair of them fought so hard that it broke something, cause their light is still floating around the place- gold and silvery threads just kind of drifting through the air. It looks super sweet. Saucy says that all the essence use has turned the place into a demense and people might get wierdified if we don’t control it somehow. I think the boffins are going to cook up a magic building to make the place safe and give it cool powers.
So next up it’s Delun vs Pretty-face Poserguy. Straight out the gate Pretty-face is doing more talking than fighting and just letting his magic ribbon do all the hard work. It’s pretty obvious after the last match that Delun is half arsing it, he’s barely trying let alone cutting loose. Maybe Pretty-face told him that all the glowing earlier blinded an orphan in the crowd or something; Delun’s kinda dumb that way. Anyhow I pitch in to give some encouragement from the stands and remind everyone who they should be cheering for and who’s a manipulative sleazy scumbag.
FDD tells me to lay it off, cause apparently I’m influencing the match, but screw that- I’m not gonna let our Champ get torn up because he’s too smitten with Smugface to gjve it his all.
Fortunately, before I’m forced to get into it with the judge, Delun finally catches the scoundrel off balance and splats him like a bug. Ahh, so satisfying.
Any way Blossom scoops up her bed-buddy and hightails it back to her hideyhole, whilst the rest of us give Delun the applause he deserves. Eff Diddy shows himself a class act and pulls out a special prize, a bad ass flying golden boat that he had off some star chosen. It looks freaking awesome and apparently it just needs one of those magic stones to get it working. Fingers crossed when we get the arena built here it’ll crystallise us something a bit bit shinier than Ash’s weird hairy rock.
That evening we all (well save for the old boring folk) ditched the gala and cut loose at one of the dance parties in the Roots. Delun is starting to move like he might have a clue what he’s doing, he’s got a rocking bod, so maybe I should give him some proper dance lessons some time. Blossom is still a disaster, but at least she’s enjoying herself, and better to have her here murdering a mambo than some poor sod in a back alley. It was good to spend a bit of time with them without anything bad happening, things have been a little tense recently and they been giving me some funny looks.
So that’s Calibration wrapped up then. The last day was pretty quiet, just the usual street parties, religious observances and parades. No explosions! Anyhow Delun and I spent most of the day schmoozing the VIPs and making sure that everyone is going away happy(ish).
Here’s the run down as I understand it:
- House Tepet are going to stay out of our way and we’re not going to look for trouble with them. They might be trade partners in the future. Tepet Hera and I assume Nelly are going to hang around to be their local pointmen.
- Kamthahar aren’t too keen on us, but stand to benefit from being the hub of trade between us and the realm. At some point we’ll need to do something about their silly believe in their own divinity.
- Ydanna are willing to be partners in our Golden Sea alliance so long as they don’t have to get off their behinds and actually do anything. They grow a lot of food at least, so that’s something.
- Ysyr are on board with the alliance. Saucy is staying here a while to sort out this manse project for Blossom, she’s sent Hunter home with instructions on how to keep things working properly. They’re gonna provide sorcerors where needed.
- Volivat have agreed to provide our armed forces. In exchange Delun had a talk with his sister and they’ve agreed she’s gonna go over there and be presented with suitors. Meixia was a bit taken aback by the whole thing, but I’m sure she’ll be alright- they’ve lots of first age stuff for her to explore and she won’t have to marry some braindead uggo (unless she wants to, I guess).
There’s a wierd kind of pull near the gate in the centre of the city disk, apparently Delun and I are the only ones who can feel it. We’re going to check it our with Saucy- hopefully it’s nothing too bad….
Oookay, so apparently someone has created us a kind of embassy building in a shabby part of hell. The demons aren’t allowed in because it counts of being part of Creation, but it’s dangerous to go outside because there’s some deadly wind Yozi that breezes through every so often and murderises anyone in the streets. I guess the demons make it dangerous too, come to think of it. Anyhow I guess it’ll be useful if we decide to invade Malfeas one day, and haven’t spotted any obvious drawbacks to it being there. Yet.
We have a problem. When the sun came back out that wierd part of the sky stayed all dark and manky, and now the children being born in the region (and maybe further!) are all pale and ghosty. We’ve told Maki that Heaven needs to get on the job, so he’s off hobnobbing with the starchosen, meanwhile we’re thinking about getting Delun’s flying ship up and running so we can go up and have a proper look ourselves. According to Jet there’s an abandoned manse on an Isle of Winds near Volivat- we might be able to get one of those magical superstones there with any luck.