• Mature • Ignore the Man Behind the Curtain!

26th of Cylus 720

Most shops, parlors, workshops, and other businesses are found here, as well as the homes of those wealthy who are not of royal title. Guilds bleed the citizens dry of coin through taxes and fees. Trade is limited in Quacia, and supplies can be expensive.
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Zunylanih
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Joined: Fri Sep 27, 2019 10:06 pm
Race: Yludih
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Ignore the Man Behind the Curtain!




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"Dialogue"


26th of Cylus 720


The streets of the Gleam were well named. Everything was so... shiny and new. Like a brand new puppet unwrapped from its boxing, the epoxy finish still evident and unmarried by use. Underneath it all, of course, Keque was well aware of the rot that pervaded the city at all corners. Yet for all that, it made his job there all the more necessary. He was there to cheer people up! And cheer people up he would.

It was, of course, highly inadvisable to walk the streets of the Gleam in clothing such as he kept in his hovel in the Shanty. He'd recently purchased a new fine outfit of motley to wear over his padded gambeson and armor. The motley was purposefully woven several sizes larger, so it could fit over his armor. Even the Gleam wasn't entirely the safest place, and there were those stretches of time during which he walked through the Shanty, where he'd be beaten half to death for even daring to wear such finery. Sometimes the best defense was to show that you had nothing worth taking.

He waited until he was on the outskirts of the Gleam, and then ducked behind a darkened alleyway, to throw his motley over his armor. It was still rather bright out. He might get away with silks in the Shanty after dark but during broad daylight?

Whatever the case was in the Shanty, he was in the Gleam now, and a certain level of decorum and class was required in order to thrive as a performer. He crept back out of the other end of the alleyway, and into the Gleam. There on those cobbled streets, he made his way between well-appointed stores and workshops. He followed the same path to his destination as every day he was at work. There, he took up a position at the street corner and unloaded his satchel. He opened it up and revealed the several dolls within. A King, a priest, a princess, two serfs, a cook. All that was necessary to tell a story of frightful humor.

The stall was small, but he'd set it up days before. Thankfully, the guild thugs hadn't visited it like they had the previous nights. Perhaps they had yet to find the jester's new performance location. But it was only a matter of time before he'd find it smashed to pieces in the middle of the street one morning. It was the way of things when your property didn't bear the seal of the Guilds.

Still dressed in his motley, he crept behind the curtain of his stall and drew it around him to hide his presence, as well as that of his crosses that he held over his marionettes. He chose to attach the crosses first to the priest as was his habit. He'd present the opening crawl in the form of a monologue, to grab the attention of passersby.

Keque cleared his throat, and then went on to begin his performance. The priest strode from behind the curtains and began laying out his little bit of religiousizing.

The priest gave a droning speech, on the Wounded god and this and that. The content wasn't important, and anyway, Keque was improvising for the most part. "The Wounded God requires blood! Blood of Martyrs, blood of you and me! Come to the chapel, and spill thy blood oh Heaps!"

Enter stage right, a pair of finger puppets, dressed in rags. These were the Heaps he spoke of. "Oh, but we must be going to..."

"To market!" Chimed the other. Pushing the other along.

A few children gathered around the stall at this point, and were watching with rapt interest as Keque played with his dolls. "Yes, to market for... a spot of bloodwine, we are trading our mutton!"

Keque cracked up behind the stall at the word 'mutton'. Good lord fleshies had such funny words for their foodstuffs! To conceal the break in character, he had the serfs shake in laughter.

But the priest, meanwhile, was not amused. He tilted the finger puppet over, it's satin robe spilling out over the stage and revealing a part of Keque's wrist. "You are Heaps, to bleed is thy duty to the Wounded God! So bleed peasants!" The priest went behind the stage for a moment, breaking the immersion of the onlookers for just a moment. But they were mostly children, and their bored parents. The children had low standards when it came to the virtuosity of a performance. Presently, the priest came back, with a large looking cleaver that was supposed to represent an executioner's axe. "Peasants must bleed for the Wounded God, he's thirsty!" So saying, the priest struck off the detachable heads of the serfs. Much to the delight of most of the children. Some of them cried, however, but most of them seemed to enjoy the bit of violence on display. A squirt of cherry juice exited the detachable beads that served as the serf's heads, simulating blood.

The play was over soon, and Keque ran out of ideas and improvisational energy. He stored the puppets in their containers, and stepped out from the stall in his Keque guise. There, he rattled a tin cup, begging for some nels from the parents.

Some of the children tugged at their parents coattails, "Oh please, give him more! We want to see him chop off more dolly heads!" Keque's mouth twisted at that. DId they not appreciate his fine art?! Were they only after gratuitous violence?!

What philistines, what vile and debauched... "Thank you!" He said as the parents began pouring nels into his tin cup. One after the other, they dipped into their pockets to get coppers, silvers, and even an odd gold.

Such a bounty! He should play with dolls more often...

He had a few more encore performances for the benefit of the children, keeping them occupied while the Parent(s) of each child went about their business in the good old lair. By the time they came to gather their children, Keque's fingers were beginning to ache from all the motions he made with those finger puppets. But he must suffer for his art!



word count: 1057
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Zunylanih
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Race: Yludih
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Re: Ignore the Man Behind the Curtain!





About a break afterward, he managed to pack up his stall, and placed it upon the back of his donkey. The donkey he led through the streets, his purse rattling all the way as he walked, with well-earned nels. He was looking for Jovita, who would be turning out at the Red Lights of the Lust's Fallacy. He wanted to see how she'd done. They'd talked about... well mostly she'd talked about, moving into a flophouse of their own, or even purchasing one after pooling their nels together. They could become land lords... The dream was a sweet one, to make money with minimal work, just laying up a quintet of bums in a flophouse and waiting for it to collapse into the Shanty, pocketing the well-earned nel and laughing all the way to the whorehouses and ambrosia dens.

He found her by the corner, a few blocks from the Lust's fallacy. She smiled slyly when she saw him. He returned the gesture, but knew well enough that she would be holding out on him. He leaned into a friendly embrace with the harlot, and whispered into her ear, "Well, you look to have made out with some fat nel..." He winked at her, and slapped her rear, at which she squealed in surprised delight. She pushed him away playfully. Then with the other hand produced a pouch full of silver nels. Keque quirked an eyebrow. "That's all?"

Jovita sighed, and leaned into her left leg as she took a defensive posture, "Aye Darling. Nothing but cheapskates tonight..."

Keque looked at her blankly a moment, and then sighed. "My dear, if I'm to be your man, your pimp, you really need... LEARN TO LIE BETTER, BOCETA!" And he slapped her, hard enough to send her sprawling to the ground.

He glowered over her, for a few moments. She looked shocked, as ever, but soon rolled her eyes, and reached into her cleavage to retrieve the golden nel. She handed it up to him. He took it in hand, and smiled at the shine, biting into it to make sure of its purity. "I..." He beheld her on the ground, and feigned remorse, "You really shouldn't make me do that, I care about you Jovita, you know. I don't want to have to hit you. Now lets get some food in you. You must be hungry!"

So saying, the Clown Pimp and his Harlot trotted off to make what they could of the rest of the night.
word count: 427
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Doran
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Re: Ignore the Man Behind the Curtain!

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Zunylanih:

Knowledge:
Acting: x2
Storytelling: x2
Unarmed Combat: x2

Loot: -
Lost: -
Wealth: -
Injuries: -
Renown: 10, for a public performance.
Magic XP: -
Skill Review: Appropriate to level.
Points: 10
- - -
Comments: This is probably the first Zuny thread that I read. I am impressed by how different he is from your other PCs. You’ve managed to give him his own unique voice. You write a Sesser-marked performer very well!

I found his puppet theatre quite entertaining, and I like that you incorporated his being an Yludih into the thread (his thoughts about fleshies and their foodstuffs, for example).

When the children told their parents that they wanted to see Zuny chop off more dolly heads, I couldn’t help but laugh. Such bloodthirsty children! It seems as if they really do not care about the finer points of art!

The scene with Jovita was unexpected. A clown/performer who is also a pimp is quite a unique character concept!

Enjoy your rewards!

word count: 162

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Ring of Reversal
Ring of Immunity
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