April 8th, the year 751 BC (continued)
Kraj wanted time to rest. Had to go. I love a silken sheeted bed but I’m missing fresh air. He at least wanted to collect some weapons. I couldn’t tell him that was a bad idea. There were daggers he grabbed and a longsword. Fine now we can go. In hindsight we probably should have, but I think we were all hoping we could just get out of there.
I don’t know exactly what we were expecting but it probably wasn’t a gust of wind, slamming the door and blowing out some of the torches. Kraj was immediately worried, staying to our back. He spooks easy so I try to coax him along like I would any frantic-eyed pony..
The first door to our right and it’s locked. I open it with a little work. Inside are set pieces, making me immediately swear. Lemot is truly behind it all. I’ll slap him yet. Heading inside we find the pieces are very large. We search and find mechanical dogs or wolves.
I can barely touch the one that charged me. Kraj kills it but not before it bit me twice. Esera is fighting two. Arden quickly got out of the room but I was trapped. I head away and in and find another door. I unlock it. By then Esera’s probably been hurt, but Kraj helped her kill the last of them. What’s more, I decide to let Esera heal me.
I ask for my privacy considering it bit my leg and I’ll have to hike up my robe. Kraj tied to take a peak but we wait. As soon as Esera touched me though, she had a fit. Girl’s behavior is starting to trouble me, but she still tends the wound. I thank her for my privacy… She wears it on her face.
They’re going into that room, I tell them I’m adjusting my dress. I… hear a sound… Out in the hallway, so I investigate finding another hall to the left. I go further and find a door that’s not locked. Inside is the farm house set. Damn Lemot. If the rest of the theater is behind one of these pieces we can get out!
But walking in, I can’t find the door. I recall now how confused I got. What was going on? I go outside and I only grow more anxious. I know now as I write this they were too busy collecting things from behind that iron door. Platinum of all things! Arden has a nice collection of things.
I decide to go through my book and read. It helps me remember how crazy this is, it’s not real. I trust myself more than my perceptions. Illusions! All of it, illusions! Lemot, you hack. Come on out and talk to me! The corn seems a fair place to hide so that’s where I go. I’m not going to get caught. I won’t let him kill me. I’m not crazy.
…this place is horrendous. The fresh air makes me sick. No alley to dart down, no shadows to cling to. There’s only that wretched moon and its light. Damn this place, a false farm and all the trickery of a great con man. I know trickery and it will take more than this to trick me…
Slinking out, I can’t see any sign of anyone. False corn, false house… If I can get across the river, it’ll be easy to get away. It will hide my foot prints long enough to get away and back to the city. I long for the sewers of Pont-a-Museau, the smell never changes and they never see you coming. Perhaps Mortigny first, check on the boys…
Traveling down this dirt path, it looks well worn. If I come upon anyone maybe I can make a quick profit. Ah but they’ll probably run from this. I’ll play the ne’er-do-well of the woodland. Yes…
The moon calls and I can’t stand still. I’m drawn. Maybe I can break this façade and be on my way. I howl and jeer and howl again, but nothing. This is a trap doubly infuriating for I know I’m in it. The field ahead is striking, but bright. I go to call for Lemot but then… As much as I’d like to stab him in the back or right between the eyes, I am going to bring the house down on us…
I call out I’m looking for the wife. I can lie. Isn’t that what acting is? I’m no thespian but any con is acting. Slipping into the corn, I wait for the feet I hear to show themselves. They’re trapped in it, that lousy bunch of hypocrites. Self-righteous Esera is some broad. Arrogant Arden is the Sheriff. Cantankerous Kraj is the husband. Which means…
…Fuck You Lemot…
Well I found my way through the corn. Years in the grains of Nova Vassa makes it hard to get lost. I’m going to play along so we can get out of here. Out steps the doting wife, checking on the field for my baby. Kraj wants a kiss, Esera is my sister, and Arden’s a hard ass. Why, color me surprised.
We go back to the house. I pretend to want tea. I even call out a mock to Lemot, falling over the box as I carry wood to the stove. I hope he was amused. I certainly was… This play is just terrible and more the hoax than any Dementlese production. We call in everyone for tea. I try to convince my brother, Arden. I think it has worked. He and Esera leave, but when I go to pick up the box.
Evil duplicates that want our stuff. I don’t know who this weird boy is but he comes at me. Kraj falls quickly. This thing has me up against a wall, even after I tried to rouse Kraj. It says it wants its memories back. What? Ridiculous! What insanity is Lemot trying to deliver on us now? Every strike makes me forget more, but I try to reason with it.
I fall and by the time I wake up I’m strapped against a table, my linen duplicated bleeding slightly next to me. Some disfigured person is up in a throne with two massive farmhand-like goons beside him. His name is Frederick and he made us. Oh this is just absolutely horrible.
Little did I know Esera struggled to survive hers. She was furious, actually yelling and impertinent to clearly our more powerful enemy. Honestly, what is wrong with this child? Some fowls just need a good tumble before they smarten up. I try to reason with her and in comes Lemot. Lemot’s the original and best? That’s curious.
I want to know who of me is original. Frederick, trapped here, claims it doesn’t matter, but it must. I get down and warn him not to overreact. He does start to, how funny. I cut myself and I do bleed but when Esera is talking to Lemot he reveals the original is the one in linen. Yet Frederick wants me to believe we were duplicates before the farm scene? Lemot says we needed to prove ourselves?
This doesn’t make sense at all. I’d love to speak with the only other reasonable head about it, but Arden’s mind is clearly broken. He snapped and so there’s angry, eager to leave Kraj and angry, eager to die Esera. I’m going to try and talk everyone down, be cooperative and hope we can get some information and survive to leave. We may not even be in a Port-a-Lucine anymore! Kraj just seems eager to see his dogs.
Honestly? I mean I know they are loyal, sheep dogs are wonderful, but aren’t you the least bit curious? The theater didn’t go up or down but away and back and moves around the Core. Well that sounds like terrible magic to me, though honestly I’m not convinced it’s Frederick pulling the strings.
Kraj mentioned DG, whom I had come to believe just a trap or trick to get us to the theater. Frederick had no idea whom that way. I played it off like someone that attended. Lemot never denied it though. Oh I should mention presumably every other person at the theater died. This has happened for many years. It’s disgusting. I’m going to do all I can to ruin Lemot.
Arden isn’t snapping back. Frederick thinks he’s fully broken from the memory transfer… Disturbing. He confirms he uses some necromancy. This is just rotten to the core. No wonder Kraj hates wizards. I try to get to Arden but Esera’s too busy screaming in our ears. I have all my things. Kraj comes down. I let Esera down and then check on Arden. He has his guns, his spell book, and a lot of money and other things…
But I close up his bag, which was rather curiously large, and leave him be. I’m more concerned that he wakes up. I know. I could have just tried to leave but now, I can’t. This is bigger than anything I’ve come across. The real trouble will be getting anyone to believe us. As Frederick said, we’re supposed to try and fit in. He’s going to check on us. I wonder how many of his things are running around.
Honestly, I’m wondering more if this isn’t Lemot putting us in another play. This all could be a sham with an attempt to make us eager to accept we’re alive and leave so we don’t cause him further trouble. He confirmed he died before and that his body is lying around there. Does that mean if something bad happens we can be remade there?
This is something I’ll have to investigate further and carefully. They claimed to have done this for years. It appears they did. The things we took seem real. Maybe I can find proof around the Core of it? I’m sure I can convince Esera to help me. I may have to rouse Kraj’s anger to fight back. Arden, well, we’ll be lucky if he wakes up. I’m worried about what they did to all of us, but especially him.
We accept to leave and I help lead Arden out. It’s in the woods, some simple clearing with a little path through the saplings and larger trees. We look back and it’s gone, just some old stone arch and the remnants of a foundation. Kraj is thrilled. His cart came alone with us.
Cue the weapon show.