Post by Tessa Rothaldi on Nov 16, 2014 5:14:50 GMT -8
I'd like my character to go by the name Tessa Rothaldi in the human world, so when you change the name on this character thread, it might be better to go by that. I was also wondering: For the drawback Hedonistic, what constitutes pleasure/entertainment? Would practicing her music count if she genuinely enjoys it? Or sleeping in? I just wonder how hard the requirements will be to meet, because I'm also considering Paranoid to reflect how she views the human world.
Since Kitsune and 'Eastern' humans don't live in this part of the world. Part of your backstory would need to include why you are here. I have one idea, and Paranoid could fit well with that. The 'Eastern' part of the world is far south, across the sea. Between here and there are a chain of islands usually called the Reaver Isles. On those islands are rough, barely civilized humans who like to raid coastlines pillaging and taking slaves. Perhaps you, or your family was once taken in a raid. From there you were sold to a human noble in this part of the world. Slavery is illegal here, so he kept his slaves secret. You escaped, possibly killing somebody on your way out. Since then you fear that your former master would hunt you down, so you live under a false name, and change your appearance regularly.
Just an idea. If you had another idea for why you are here, let me know. Would your character have any connection to other PCs? I also have an idea that could involve Surallel if you want.
If you want to keep Hedonistic. I think playing your own music would not be as pleasurable, so instead of needing an hour, you would need to play for two. Unless, you play in front of a crowd who pays you, in which case you only need an hour.
Post by Tessa Rothaldi on Nov 16, 2014 12:36:27 GMT -8
I like that idea. Since I wasn't sure how the world was set up I really hadn't created a good back story yet. The only problem I have with that scenario is figuring out what profession to take. If she was taken too young she might not have one yet. I was thinking, and you can tell me if this is too much, that maybe she was some sort of spy-in-training for a noble house in her homeland. She was investigating another noble house's connection to the slave trade and got grabbed. She learned bardic skills as part of her training to give her an in to noble households.
Profession Chef, gives you an extra skillset for infiltration. Maid/Butler for the same reason. Anything in the domestic service could be useful for someone trying to infiltrate noble houses, as nobles generally don't do their own cooking or cleaning. Prostitute (or courtesan) for a Mata Hari kinda thing. Merchant could be good cover, they often travel around (usually armed) and people don't think twice. Merchants who deal in rare items (like distant trade goods or antiques) might even be a welcomed guest.
For generations, your family worked, as slaves, for the Otomo Family. Most Kitsune live as slaves in the south. About 75 years ago, Daimyo Otomo Shingen took the radical step of freeing all his slaves. Since then the Otomo have been outspoken opponents of slavery, one of the only noble families to do so. The Akiyama are held in high regard by the Otomo, the former slaves now occupy places of honor within the household. Your father served as chief steward, and your mother designed and tended the vast gardens in the palatial Otomo estate. The current head of the Otomo family, is Daimyo Iasu. As a child, you served at his table, listening in on every meeting he had, learning the faces of those he ate with. It was Otomo Iasu who first saw your potential, as an invaluable spy. He taught you how to blend in, to be unnoticed, and to keep your ears open. You would play for other nobles while they ate, but you would also listen to their conversations, and report back what you heard.
This morning, you woke up to find the household in a frenzy. The house servants were running around, yelling at each other, everyone seemed frantic. You were soon able to gleam that Master Otomo had some unexpected visitors. Presuming you would be asked to play something for the visitors, you joined in the madness of the house, getting dressed and gathering your instruments. Sure enough, Master Otomo found you and asked you to sit in on the meeting. In Otomo's study, you take a seat in the corner, behind his desk. Within a few minutes 3 strangers are lead into the room. You have never seen their like before. They were obviously human, but their faces, and hair were unlike any humans you had ever seen. You reasoned, that they must be from the far north. Their leader was blonde woman, beautiful perhaps according to Northern Human standards. Her companions were men, less attractive, and they did not seem as well armed, another fact you found odd. In the South it is considered rude to enter someone's home carrying weapons, yet two of these foreigners had long blades on their hips. Master Otomo had been teaching you how to speak the language of the northerners, and this meeting caused you to regret not paying better attention during the lessons. The foreigners and Master Otomo spoke only in the foreign language, you understood about 1 word in 3. You did get the impression that they were asking the Daimyo for something, something important. After the visitors left, you and your master sat silently for quite a while, him deep in thought, you afraid to disturb him.
After several minutes, he looks at you. I do not suppose you were understood that? Before waiting for you to answer he continues. These Northerners have slave problem. They claim that two noble families in the north had a dispute, it turned violent, and in a rare twist, one family tried to sell the heir of the other into slavery. The boy was on a ship bound for Magashi before the King's men found him. The King's elite guards now think there is a secret network that is moving slaves between here and there........
He will continue speaking, but I will pause here to give you the opportunity to respond. If you don't have anything to say and your character will just sit there listening, please respond with that so I know you have read this.
I do not doubt the existence of this network. Northerners are greedy, and the noble families here are little better. The Northerners say slavers base of operations is in the ruins of Okonan, I told them they were wrong, but that woman was too bullheaded to listen. You know, that Okonan was once the capital of a vast empire on the southern continent, it was destroyed by some unknown means during a civil war that destroyed that empire. Nobody goes to Okonan for fear of the ghosts and evil forces said to dwell there. Further, she all but demanded my help in gathering information on which families were involved. Arrogant bastards! The outburst startles you. Master Otomo is usually very calm. After few moments, his demeanor is more relaxed and he continues. Here is what we shall do. There is only one person who could be involved in such a scheme. Kawa Toko. You know that Kawa Toko is the matriach of powerful family. She makes a fortune trading good between North and South. She is one of the few merchants with ships large enough to make the journey, and pays off enough of the Reavers to allow her ships to sail unraided. If we presume they aren't based in Okonan, they must have a base somewhere. I want you to pay a visit to Kawa Toko. She has always enjoyed your music. You should leave tonight. By tomorrow night, I will have have two of my ninjas in position, you get them inside her home, they will find the records we need. With luck, we can take out her operation with foreign aid.
Unless you have anything to add, the next phase will be your infiltration of House Kawa
Post by Tessa Rothaldi on Nov 18, 2014 10:55:39 GMT -8
My lord, perhaps a gift of my services will appear less suspicious if there is some reason we should seek to curry favor with her. Is there any reason we would do so? The most convincing lies have a grain of truth, after all.
I try to recall any reasons that my lord would seek out her aid. A troublesome neighbor, trade alliances, etc.
Perhaps you are right. We could use the foreigners, or the threat of them, to appear as friends. My attitude toward the Northerners, especially arrogant and presumptuous Northerners, is well known she may not think twice. She has her spies, and it is possible she knows about my visitors. If she is guilty of the crimes they claim, she would likely be able to reason out their purpose here. You will go to her. With a letter from me, I will tell her that i need to speak with her as soon as possible, but I had an unavoidable engagement, and can only meet her tomorrow night. As an apology and token of good faith, I will gift her two nights of performance from you. We can move forward with our plans, without the appearance of being foreign pawns. In fact, quite the opposite. Yours is a brilliant idea. Now, let us go. We have many preparations to make.
You make your preparations, gather your gear. Master Otomo gives you his sealed letter, and wishes you good luck. You travel most of the day, arriving at the Kawa estate before the evening meal. You present yourself and the letter to Mistress Kawa's steward. He looks at your suspiciously. Then turns to one of the other servants and tells him to make up some guest quarters. Your room is small, sparsely furnished. The door has lock, but remains unlocked. The evening continues as you planned. You play for Mistress Kawa and her household after their meal. She says nothing to, but her steward relays messages of gratitude for the performance and her desire to meet with your master. She seemed unmoved by your performance, the only one. You think she may have been too distracted to enjoy the music. The specific distraction, you can't tell for certain. Whenever you have an opportunity, you inspect the grounds of the house, in particular, the eastern sections. There is a large pear orchard to the east, and that will be the most lively ingress point for Otomo's agents. That task should not be too hard, it is one you have done successfully a dozen times before. Despite your preparations, you do have some anxiety, more than on most missions.
You push your anxieties aside. As the next day passes, you offer to play for Mistress Kawa, your offer is declined, but it does give you an opportunity to wander the grounds a bit. You continue to try and gauge the servants and guards, but nothing seems out of the ordinary. As evening approaches, a servant approaches. Master Otomo Iasu has arrived, Mistress Kawa requests your services during their meeting. The request is not odd, you have played music during secret meetings before, usually to hamper any potential eavesdroppers. The meeting goes well, you think. Mistress Kawa seemed to be put at ease, Master Otomo promised to give her whatever support she needed, as well as reiterate his own antipathy toward foreign interference. The meeting turns from business to social, as the two nobles discuss their latest art acquisitions, some noble gossip and the like.
You request to be excused, as it is obvious that your distractions are no longer needed. As you make your way back to your room, you turn toward the eastern wing of the house. You glance out toward the pear orchard, and see two torches planted in the ground on the near edge of the orchard. Confused, you strain your eyes a bit to see, and a mild panic sets in when you realize the torches are lighting up two figures, dressed in black, hanging from pear trees. A thousand thoughts shout at once in your mind, with two shouting loudest, 'Get out' and 'Warn Otomo'. You begin to walk away from the windows, quickly but careful not to draw attention, there is a chance they haven't made you yet.
She... will do nicely. She won't fully compensate me for your fuck up however. The male voice comes from behind you. You turn quickly and see Kawa Toko and a man standing in the hall. The man is handsome, save for his skin, which appears dull colored and ashen. His clothes and accent mark him as a northerner. There is a look in his eye, perhaps it is hunger or lust, you cannot quite tell. You subtly try to reach a secret pocket in your sleeve, they searched you for weapons but you were able to smuggle in a few smoke pellets. Before you can draw a pellet, the man waves his hand and you are overcome by fatigue, your head swims and it become impossible to focus. The last sight you see is the man, with a slight smile on his face, as you drift off to sleep.
You wake up. Your hands are bound with some sort of cloth bag. There is a gag loosely tied across your mouth. The binding are not comfortable, but you know they could be worse. It is clear their main function is to prevent spellcasting, not escape. You do seem to be bound in a cage, wooden slats prevent you from standing, or stretching your legs completely. The room is dark, and you wait a minute for your eyes to adjust (you think absently about how horrible humans have it, they would need to wait at least 2 minutes for their eyes to adjust). You also notice that the room seems to be swaying rhythmically, and there is the unmistakable smell of salt water. The salt water is difficult to pick up, as your sense of smell is also bombarded by the stench of a dungeon. Sweat, urine, stale food and misery are all smells you know well. Once your eyes adjust, you confirm what your nose already discovered. You are in a slave hold, and on a ship apparently. You see rows and rows of other cages, each with a single inhabitant. Most are human, but there are a few Kitsune and Ratfolk, as well as a few races you have never seen before. As the last vestiges of sleep are blinked from your eyes, your thoughts turn to escape.
Couple things I wanna be clear on, regarding what your character knows. 1) the Sleep spell requires a full round to cast, as does Deep Slumber. 2) Spellcraft: ZKf8eyF91-20+8= 9. Tessa is not able to identify what spell was used to put her to sleep. Either the spell has a long duration, or multiple castings were used to keep you asleep.1-20