Jul 05, 2020 6:41 AM
belmarniss lands on minus
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Belmarniss kind of hates investors throwing her together with total randos who make racist remarks at her but she hates not making progress more. So here she is in this level-mismatched band of half a dozen, looting this town that got routed by wacky cultists last year, picking off the occasional ghoul, weighing whether it's worth pooling her swag with the party fairly when she's pretty sure they hope to cut her out, venturing into a hallway with some kind of high-budget teleport trap -

- uh.

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She's in a graveyard, rows of tombstones interrupted here and there by trees and ornamental shrubs and the occasional crypt, all illuminated by the silver light of a slightly unfamiliar moon.

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There's a human, or something resembling a human, leaning against a nearby crypt sipping steaming liquid from a ceramic mug.

"Don't see that every day," he remarks. "Hello."

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"...Tongues. Come again?"

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"Hello. Welcome to Sunnydale. You appeared mysteriously out of thin air, which is at least mildly unusual. D'you have business here or is it just one of those days?"

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"...one of those days. This translation spell will last only about an hour. Where is Sunnydale?"

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"In California which is among the United States of America which together take up much of the continent of North America which is on the planet Earth. You might like to look for a better translation spell, if as implied yours isn't freely repeatable."

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"I can't cast it again today but I'll be able to tomorrow. I'm from a planet called Golarion."

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"Never heard of it. What manner of creature are you?"

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"Drow. We're a kind of elf. You look like a human."

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"Used to be one. Currently a vampire. Elves, that's interesting, I'm not sure I've run across anyone calling themselves an elf before."

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She was already pretty tense; it doesn't get that much worse when he says he's a vampire. "We're not from Golarion originally but the place we are from isn't called Earth, so. What do I need to know to find a place to sleep, food to eat - what humans eat is fine for me - that sorta thing?"

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"That depends. As far as accommodations, I believe it's traditional for newcomers in your genre to kill a few locals and move into their crypt or mansion or abandoned factory or corner of sewer, but if you're not thrilled about that option there are others. You'd have an easier time of it if you weren't so very obviously not human; for murky historical reasons, mainstream human society on Earth is completely unaware of the existence of demons, vampires, magic, other worlds, or anything else of the sort, and people will wonder why you're so very dedicated to your purple elf costume."

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"I can do a magic disguise tomorrow. What is there to kill that lives in mansions, I'm slightly picky. About the killing more than the mansion, I'll take other accommodations if necessary."

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"Vampires, mostly. Sometimes demons of other varieties. And I couldn't swear to the availability of mansions in particular—no, excuse me, that's a lie, I know exactly where to find a mansion that definitely isn't inhabited by humans but I have no idea what if anything is living there instead. And it's a bit out of the way. Very pretty, though. What are your criteria for acceptable prey?"

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"It's complicated. As a quick and dirty pass something likelier than it to be friendly to me has to be better off with it dead."

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"In that case you will likely be delighted to slaughter every vampire in your path," says the vampire, with mild ironic amusement. "Most of the demons, too. Unless you anticipate developing a seething enmity with every human you meet, but there's seven billion of the buggers so you'd have to be the most deeply off-putting person imaginable and I've found you tolerable so far."

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"You're a vampire, you said."

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"I am! And there are certainly some humans who would have been better off if I'd died before I met them. Can't say I recommend trying to kill me over it, but luckily for you, as vampires go I'm unusually responsive to nonviolent persuasion."

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"I'm not into killing people just because they're chaotic evil if they'll, like, have normal conversations, yeah."

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"Because they're what?"

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"Chaotic evil. Like, most drow ping that way, so killing people just for being chaotic evil is the sort of thing that gets adventuring parties going caving and decimating civilizations carelessly."

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"You may have to explain a few underlying assumptions here. Assume for expediency's sake that I have never heard someone described as chaotic evil before and don't know what the classification means or how it is traditionally measured."

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"...huh. Uh, there are two axes of what is called alignment, 'good' versus 'evil' and 'lawful' versus 'chaotic', which are related but not identical to the independently interesting concepts of the same names. Alignnment in the technical sense determines afterlife for most people on Golarion most of the time. It can be detected with magic, when the person you're checking is powerful enough to have an aura, but I'm the wrong kinda magic."

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"Fascinating! I do very much suspect I'm neither good nor lawful but I don't know how much of a middle ground the system provides for and I'm not sure where exactly it draws its lines."

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"Neutral's an option for both and neutral on both is what most random people who aren't accomplishing much of anything read to magic, but afterlife sorting's more sensititve than that. Anyway, even if you're chaotic evil I do not plan to attack you right now. I would however take it amiss if you went and ate somebody."

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