Kyeo doesn't remember enough of the fight to know what happened, and his head is killing him, but when he checks he still has his sidearm and also now he's apparently crashlanded on a planet with absolutely awful-looking hostile fauna, wow, and that one's coming his way much too fast and he draws and shoots.
"Those families'll usually put up with a cleric too. Or a sorcerer, we have more of those too. And then you'll have more talented grandchildren, goes the theory." Shrug.
"It seems like it would be grandchild-maximizing to not kill any of your children. Are...reproductive opportunities very limited?"
"Food is. We mostly eat mushrooms. I think drow are so violent mostly so that if a farm that feeds twenty fails forty people can be stew over it the next morning."
"I guess that makes sense. Well, I would rather live in a lawful society even if I level slower because I can have more goals that aren't about avoiding getting murdered, or murdering people, and that's worth more to me than levelling faster, but I can see why you'd take the other side of that trade."
"I'm not particularly pro-chaos, that's just what I grew up with. Why do you like... having goals?"
"I don't know how to answer that. I can't see the whole world, or the large effects of anything, but I can - contextualize my tiny bits of things and think about how they could go better and then do that and it's motivating."
"I'm just trying to imagine formulating goals when I believed the ultimate point of everything was to drop them whenever this was convenient to another entity who declined to list his high-level priorities besides the part where he's keen on subjugating folks."
"It's not very hard. I think 'I'd like a headband' and then I save up for one."
"Slaves have goals."
"Slaves usually don't have a goal 'turn into a member of a slave species and stay that way forever'."
"The goal is more like 'given that that is going to happen, land on your feet'."
"I don't know why you think Asmodeus was disposed to hand out accurate propaganda on that."
"I would expect it to be to his advantage for people who are trying to make themselves useful in Hell to know how to do that, and also I've talked to devils, I've talked to people who've been to the great market in Dis, I know how Hell works and I know there is a place in it for the skills I wanted to have and the things I wanted to do."
"No, I mean on it being inevitable."
"Oh. He might lie about that. But we seem to all agree that I am Evil and that almost everyone in Cheliax is even if it's very mysterious why."
"Yeah but you're reasoning a little circularly, I think? You're evil for mysterious reasons, you can probably still Atone in the right headspace, only you seem impaired in getting in the right headspace in part because of your psychological architecture all built around it being inevitable, only why bother, because you're already evil for mysterious reasons."
" - that's fair. I think I can probably work out how to go to Axis if I want to. I might want to. It does sound comfy. I expect Asmodeus to conquer everything eventually. Using only facts about the world that the paladins and I both agree on, He is one of the strongest gods and probably the strongest goal-oriented one, the other gods wanted to stop Him from taking Cheliax but couldn't, and He's considerably stronger now that He has it."
"Fazil's been to Axis and talks it up real good for a guy aimed at Heaven, if that would help, I don't know if it does. You said a while ago there was a case to be made for not fucking with Axis, or something, didn't you, that seemed specific to Axis but that's where you'd aim, sounds like. It might be that the other gods could have stopped him but only at costs or risks they considered too much? Especially risks, this was shortly after Foresight got wrecked and they may have had lots of ideas that would or would not have worked but they couldn't tell and were regrouping, acting conservatively to consolidate what they had instead of gambling, again, right after Aroden lost on his sure thing."
"Maybe. But you don't see them taking those risks today, either.
- I guess you do see Iomedae personally authorizing my kidnapping and - whatever plan there is, there's some plan -"
"I haven't been looped in on one but that could be, like, anti-chaos precautions, or racism, or whatever."
"I think paladins only work with paladins. It was a big to-do to bring Fazil, who is also lawful good, in."
"Yeah, I'm surprised Hagan and I were allowed in, even if Mahdi got a pass due to being theoretically willing to marry you. We're very reliable people for agents of chaos though."
"Why - did people propose the marriage - if not because that is the cover Good people need when they want to rape people."
"Uh, the decisionmakers are all Lawful and do not want to illegally hold you under geases, and the nice way they have of legally holding you captive is marrying you and the mean way is declaring you a slave but the second thing is a no go for paladins but they don't have a policy about culturally questionable marriages. And now they're figuring out some hacky thing that satisfies their consciences. If I had somehow as a solo operation or with just Hagan acquired custody of you under the same strategic conditions otherwise, I'd - well, I can't cast a geas, Mahdi doesn't outlevel me but he does outcircle me, but supposing I had a Staff of Geas that recharged off cantrips and bits of string. I'd skip the hacky legal rigmarole and the consultation of policy and just be like 'well we have here somebody who cannot walk free lest she supply intelligence to her dread master but she wants to churn out items, let's get a storefront in Absalom and not get bogged down in labels'."