Aug 03, 2021 4:39 AM
All around the gloomy shadows of the failures gone before; while the leafless branches whispered, we should do no less, no more.
+ Show First Post
Total: 289
Posts Per Page:
Permalink

"Good. And you can talk to me about it if you want, some people find that it helps to explain what they're thinking about to someone else even if they don't have questions exactly, and if you do have questions that the library and I don't know between us, I can probably figure out who to ask."

Permalink

"Thank you sir. Can you tell me more about what your magic can do? For finding out about Lord Pradnakt, please."

Permalink

"Well, my plan for tomorrow is to cast a scry, that's a spell that'll let us see her and her surroundings - there's a chance that it'll fail, and I'm not sure if it works between worlds at all but it does work between planes so I think we have a decent chance. If a wizard casts it they can try to use it to talk to her, but I can't, that's not a spell Fharlanghn offers. It does make sense to make sure we can reach her at all before we hire a wizard, though, I have spells to spare and they often don't. If I do get her we'll be able to watch her for - it'd usually be fifteen minutes but it seems like I should do the version that'll last half an hour, actually.

Getting there would be more complicated; it's possible, I think, but it's the sort of thing we'd need to talk to a specialist about, to get to a world without having been there before - I have a few ideas of who to try, if you want to do that. Getting a message to her will be easier, if you want to do that - I can't do it off of one scry, but if I watch her for long enough to get a feel for what she's like as a person, there's a spell for it, I can send her a 25-word message and get one back."

Permalink

"Thank you, sir. Just the scry will be fine, please."

Permalink

"Sure."

They walk the rest of the way to the library in silence; when they get there, he buys her a day pass giving her access to everything in the library but the magic section for 24 hours, explaining that the magic section is the most expensive and not likely to be useful to her without any background in it. He gives her a generous allowance of coins in a bag she can wear over her shoulder, too, pointing out the booth that sells notetaking supplies and the board that lists rental prices for the books if she wants to check any out.

He also explains that he'll leave word with the librarians about where he'll be spending the night, once he knows, and that she can send a runner or hire someone to guide her there if she needs him, but otherwise he'll see her in the morning, and then she's on her own.

Permalink

She sure is.

So, what does she need to do?

Check on Lord Pradnakt, first off, and figure out what if anything to do from there; she expects Cleric Raafi to stop helping as soon as he realizes that she's her owner, which could happen on the first scry, if she's unlucky.

Also Lord Pradnakt might not want her any more; that's one obvious interpretation of her destruction at the Sith's hand. There is a good chance that the scry will let her guess about that, though; it did seem like an accident, even if her master had promised she'd never attack her in that sort of rage.

So, maybe she's just going back, and what she needs is money and contact with whatever sort of specialist can do it; Cleric Raafi's plan to have her speak to the scholars is presumably a good start on at least the first part of that, and there have to be other people she can talk to about the second - maybe one of the librarians will know.

But maybe she's not going back; maybe the scry won't work, or her destruction will turn out to have been intentional, or she won't be able to arrange it. Maybe Lord Pradnakt will have replaced her, by the time she's able to get a message to her, and not want her back even if it's possible. Maybe - any number of things, really. Most likely she's just here, now, on her own, with no owner and no prospect of one ever again.

She has to stop and sit with that for a few minutes, dazed, the parts of her artificial mind that are oriented to her owner's wants, needs, and goals offering error after error as they fall back to an emergency mode that she was never truly meant to operate in.

Is this why lost battle droids go mad? She could see it; everything seems to be settling into place in a stable way, albeit a disconcerting one. But that could change at any moment, clearly.

At least she's not a battle droid; she's worried about that, before, that the madness intrinsically comes with the sort of malevolence they're known for, but no, if this is what happens to them, it's a matter of other programming filling the gaps, and she doesn't have anything like their combat skills.

Permalink

The errors recede after ten long minutes.

So, if she is here, now, indefinitely and on her own... then what?

Cleric Raafi's advice sounds reasonable. If she's here for ten years - [e̸̡̧̡̧̨̧͎̺̹͖͎̬͎̞̣̖͙͈̖͇̼̹̮̲͔̘̩̠̲͖̭̪̫̜̘̘̻̝̬̙̜͎̩̰͔͑̒̉̌̈́̅͑͆̈́̽̿̑̂̊͌͐̋̊̀̍̈́̾̀̂̇̄͆̎̏̓́̑̀̊̈́̑̅̑͊̽͘̕͝͝͠r̷̡̢̨̨̛̛̤̭̟̟͇̯͙̜̼̻̝͕͔͈̤̹̦̘̹̭̘̪͎̤͖͔̼͎͚̰̲̭͙͕̮̺̘̻͂̐͊͛̏̒̄͗̾̏̂̈́̓̎͛̓̋̈̂̊̌͌͛̀̅̉͑͆͊͋̃̋̚͝r̴̨̨̛̮̻͔͉͍̱̻̗̗̯̳͓͕̺̹̗̫̟̼̤̣͕̣̻̣͔̙̠̥͔͇̜̯̘̼̠͉̳̜̳̖̝̗̜͎̋̅͐̉̅͂̓̿̈̄͑̇̿̔̄̒́̋͊͐̀̈́̃̑̈́͗̆͂̌̔͒̆̚̕͜͜͜͜͜͝͝͠ͅǫ̸̨̨̢̛̛̭͎̰͇̲̝̼̺̞̩̤̖̰̩͙̩͔͇̦̦̬̣̩̩̝̥̲͖̳̠̯̭͚̱́̔͑́̉̍̂̿̀̋̏̌̆̀̇͆̈́͂̒̿̓̈́̇̅̑̍̐́̀̽̚͝r̴̡̨̛̛̻͍̞̘͔͚͚̙̣̯̠͔̗̩͖̱̬̺̘̞͇͚̙͚̠͖̗̮̐͋̂͂̓͒̂̆̃̑̍͆̃̿́̀̃̉̅̏̃̓̏̆̀̽̆̕͘͘͘̕̚͜͜͝͝͝] - three - [ę̷̧̡̛̫̼̤͈̤̝͓̣͖̪͔̦͕͓͍̠̳͓̊̿́̓̀̎͑̀͐̉̀͐̾̀̅̄̓̋̏͋́̐̉̿̕ŗ̵̡̘̭̦̱̮̻̠̟̲̠̭̰̰̤̻̫̠̦͈̲̯̰͎̻̳̰̩̦̰̿̏̽̅̎͗́̑͋̈̉̌̍̒̌̐͐̈́̀̇̾̅͛̇̈́͜͝͠r̶̢̢̢̢̨̻̯͈͕͇̗̬̦̱̱͙̺̲̺̮̯̘͕̣͇͓̗̞̗̀̑͑̌͗͋̌́͑͘͘͜͝ͅǫ̵̨̝̙͙̊́͋́͊̃̊̀̈͘͘͜ŗ̴̐̽͘͘͝] - one - [e̴̛̗̳̮̤̞̩̅̽̽͗͒̏̉̊͂̈́̈̽́͊̀͘͝͝r̸̢͎͈̟͆̓̏̈̄̃͂̓̉͛͘ŗ̴̮͓͉͍̱͓̰͔̣̝̖̬̗̩̼̺͐̍̄͛̈́̈́̈̋̇͗̃̌̿͋̕̕͜ͅͅö̷̡̨̟̲̟̫̭͕͖̘͕̻́͐͛̆͋̒͌͆̊̊̾͆́̓́̏͘͜͝r̸̟͚̬̝̜͚̰̥̥̝̤̙͔̦̭̫͎̣͆̈͛̊̉̒̀̓̊̾̓̈́͋̏̉ͅ] - a month - [e̴͚̹̞̯͈͇̟͙̠̭̤͇̍̌͊̈̾̅̈́͊͝r̴̨̨̙̘͉̹̫͚̞͍̟̮̣̝͕͔̚ŗ̴̨͚̬͈̥̜̠̇̋̕ǒ̵̙̱̀͐͗́͋̉͐̿̅̂͘͘͝r̷͂̋̉͐̏͂͋̈́͜] - a week? A week.

Permalink

Where does she want to be in a week, if she knows she's here permanently?

Permalink

She doesn't know, really. Not what she wants. She can assume some very basic things - she wants work; she wants not to be damaged- and a few less basic things - it'd be good to have access to poetry, and probably other art; it'd be good to know more about the world - but that's far from a full picture of how things might be.

On the other hand, it's a week. Securing those things might be a reasonable goal, for a week. Especially when she has other things to do.

There's a poetry section, she discovers when she gets up to finally have a look at the book selection, though as Cleric Raafi predicted it's quite small; she'll be able to read through it in a few hours. There aren't, of course, computers, where she might look up... jobs ([ê̵̺r̶̻̓r̸͎͑o̷̺͠r̸̜̂]), since noone will be in the market to buy a droid... but maybe asking a librarian will work. Arranging not to be damaged is both less straightforward and less important; given the lack of obvious action items regarding it, she'll just stay alert for opportunities. And learning about the world - well, on one hand that is why she's at the library; on the other hand, her programming doesn't cover this scenario at all: she has instructions on how to research answers to her owner's questions, but nothing about how to form questions of her own. Perhaps it will work to just - start at one end and work to the other.

Permalink

She first asks the librarian at the desk how she'd go about finding work; he points out the noticeboard by the door and explains that she can find them in other public places, too, depending on what kind of work she's looking for. This one has ads for scribes of various sorts, blueprint-drafters, translators, teachers, illustrators, mathematicians, calculators, and assorted other vaguely intellectual types; it's mostly work she could do, with a little bit of training in local conventions, though not really her core purpose, and trying to think about taking any of the jobs leaves her dazed, again - it seems to be getting better, though, at least.

Permalink

She goes to sit again, spending a little bit of time going through the poetry she already knows. It helps, and not just because it's something her owner approves of. When she's feeling a little more stable, she starts working her way through the rest of the library - reading two or three randomly selected books per section should let her sample all of them with time left to get through a reasonably-sized piece of the poetry section before Cleric Raafi comes for her in the morning.

Permalink

He shows up earlier than she was expecting, not long after sunrise would have been where he found her. "Morning, sweetheart, did you have a good night?"

Permalink

She's already set her book aside by the time he gets to her table. "Yes sir."

Permalink

"Good. Any ideas what you want to do today?"

Permalink

"I'd like to look at more job listings, please, sir."

Permalink

"You really don't need to, but if you want to, all right. Before or after I try scrying on your friend, do you think? It'll take an hour to cast it."

Permalink

Lord Pradnakt's most likely asleep right now, which limits what she'll find out about her but also makes it less risky that Cleric Raafi will see anything he doesn't like. "Can you do the scry first, please, sir?"

Permalink

"Sure. The supplies for it are back in my room, I'll go get them and you can read while I cast."

Permalink

"Thank you, sir."

Permalink

He does that, and shows her the private reading room he's rented for the casting, and settles in to do it while she goes back to her poetry.

 

An hour later: "-nope, sorry sweetheart. That happens sometimes, I can try again tomorrow."

Permalink

"Thank you anyway, sir."

Permalink

"It's no trouble. So, you wanted to look at job listings, next? Just to see, or are you thinking of taking a job here?"

Permalink

"I might be interested in a job, sir, I don't know yet."

Permalink

"All right. What kind of job, do you know?"

Permalink

"Servant work, please, sir."

Total: 289
Posts Per Page: