Oct 29, 2020 3:57 AM
elesse is the summoned hero
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"...Where are you from?"

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"A planet called Coruscant."

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" - A planet?"

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"A world, generally spherical, which orbits in space around a sun."

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"Haven't heard of that."

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"This world seems to be at a low level of technological development, so that is not entirely surprising. Of course, it may also be that this universe subscribes to a different philosophy of organization."

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"You think you're from another universe?" He doesn't sound very surprised or disbelieving, just thoughtful.

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"I am reasonably certain that I am, yes. This will not be the first one I have come across, though usually arrivals are not so... flashy."

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"I've heard of that... Or, like, myths. Though everyone in the stories is like a kid or teenager..."

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"The myth's that the world pulls people into it who're destined to be a great hero or villain - usually alternating, I think? And I've heard there's someone claiming to be a Great Villain around... But - that's a myth."

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"Myths are often attempts at explaining natural phenomena in a comprehensible fashion."

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"I guess? But I haven't ever heard of anyone over sixteen appearing..."

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"Perhaps I am a special case."

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Smile. "That'd be interesting. I don't really know enough to do a full - explanation of everything? But the person we're rescuing might, the spell said she was a princess..."

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"Let's not keep her waiting, then."

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He nods. "I was thinking just walk in, trying to get a ride would be faster but might be conspicuous..."

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"Some initial reconnaissance would be wise."

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"Hm, yeah. Just watching the castle?"

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"Observing the castle, cataloging defenses, entries, exits, guard personnel. Perhaps also speaking with the locals to see if they have relevant information about the inhabitants of the castle or quirks of the local terrain."

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"There's a town that supports it, and a bunch of surrounding farmland. We could ask questions on our way there?"

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"That sounds like a plan."

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"Main road's over this way, then..." He cuts to the left at the next fork in the path, following the larger of the dirt roads. It eventually meets a dirt and mud road, wagon wheel marks pressed deep into it, winding along a river through land cleared for agriculture. Since they're talking to people anyways, Luka gets them a ride with some merchants going downriver to the big capital town - it'll be a lot faster, and the merchants are inclined to gossip. Luka says he's a farm boy, but the farm's not had much space for him, so he's seeking employment in the city, and his friend is a traveler.

(No one, at any point, introduces themself by - or uses - names.)

The planet seems thoroughly primitive, though from the merchants' talk this particular land, so far from the old Empire, is a lackluster backwater. Still, that means it's pretty far from The Villain, so it all balances out.

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Elesse also does not use her own name. She draws the merchants out in conversation about the region, patterns of trade, local polities and politicians, history...

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Well, the Villain has been laying low the last, oh, twenty years. People're still scared of her, though, even if things are now finally starting to recover from when she overthrew the last Hero. There's a lot of speculation about that, what she could be planning, what she's up to, but no real firm conclusions - of course, her main stomping grounds are also a bit farther from here, but the echoes still get felt whenever a war starts up.

Small time trade is mostly along the rivers, and is mostly short distance (there's a lot of grain flowing into the cities). Many of the Great retire to become merchants, though, so sometimes you get lucky and there's a portal or a teleport on offer - they're pricey but not as pricey as a ship.

One merchant's heard about a new tomb growing, too, that's been causing problems on some routes - some Great went and died on a major river (there's a silent 'the idiot'). They're hoping to entice someone to go beat it back a little, even if taking it out entirely is unlikely.

This region's not known for much. Exports high value wood, mostly.

The merchants generally don't like the local rulers, but are polite about expressing that - and the local rulers are disproportionately likely to have proper Names (there's a subtle quality to the one actually mentioned, a way it rings, something Luka's name never does). (Many of the Great also retire into conquest or politics). The top of the local little pile of lords is Taurna, a cruel man by anyone's measure, prone to raising taxes for petty reasons. No one really likes him, but he's been hard to unseat.

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