A Knight of Shreds and Patches
Transcript: Season 2 Episode 9: Cool Wizard Stuff
Updated: Jan 26
A Knight of Shreds and Patches Transcript
Season 2 Episode 9: Cool Wizard Stuff
Transcript by Cameron Robertson
[hurdy gurdy music begins]
Nick: Welcome, listeners, to A Knight of Shreds and Patches. An immersive actual play podcast. This episode features the talents of –
Penn: Penn Van Batavia as Marathon Messenger.
Kit: Kit Adames as Birdie Foundling.
Cameron: Cameron Robertson as Emma Blackwood.
Sydney: Sydney Whittington as Cassidy Shard.
Alli: Alli Nesbit as Renn Dare.
Kira: Kira Nesbit as Ciphera Vex.
Nick: Nick Robertson as GM and Narrator.
Sydney: Hello listeners, this is your editor, Sydney, with today’s messages:
As you should have just heard, we’ve got a couple new voices to listen to! Alli and Kira Nesbit, of the duet actual play podcast “RPG for You and Me” are joining us as guests for the next couple of episodes, so make sure you stick around for the credits to hear all the fun and exciting things they’re involved in, and where to find them.
Thanks to Jennie, our most wonderful new Patron! We’re so glad you chose to help support us. Backing our Patreon gives you access to bonus episodes, campfire conversations, and other fun rewards. And if you back in the next two minutes (or any time after this point, we’re really not into the whole high pressure sales tactics thing), you’ll get access to the first of a new bonus arc, featuring Kit as GM over a game of Blades in the Dark, a different tabletop role-playing game about a crew of daring scoundrels seeking their fortunes, set about 15 years before the current main show on the roaming city of Sasnak Traveling, and starring a new set of fresh-faced characters.
And with that, we wrap up today’s announcements and head into Season 2, Episode 9: Cool Wizard Stuff. And so...
Join us, for now our tale to yours attaches
To carry hope: a Knight of Shreds and Patches.
[hurdy gurdy music ends]
[robotic powerup noise begins]
Distorted Robotic Voice: Power restored. Systems online. Reconfiguring audio connection.
[robotic powerup noise fades to radio frequency static]
Penn (as Marathon): Last time on a Knight of Shreds and Patches, we started following my great treasure airship signal southwest we bumped into a moose, Birdie and I stole some stuff, I healed from some injuries, I reinjured some injuries, Cassidy and I triangulated a little bit more specific location for this treasure and uh then Moon River started to play over the radio which didn’t seem important to me, seemed important to the Patina I guess?
Nick: It's the morning after you heard the siren call of the song Moon River over a local radio wave. You've been traveling Southwest for some weeks, but now you have a direct heading. Using a combination of Marathon's radio knowledge and Cassidy's map skills, you're able to quickly triangulate the source of the signal and head that direction. You don't know what is needed, but it's difficult to ignore a call, especially because you know it's directed at you, the Patina. And we open in the rig as the four of you head in the direction of this mysterious song.
Cameron: Emma is probably driving and Cassidy is navigating.
Sydney: Cassidy is sitting in the passenger seat with maps up on the dash drumming her fingers slightly impatiently, like this is maybe a distraction or maybe not her favorite thing, but she also doesn't have a good argument for why not.
Penn: Marathon is getting to enjoy Birdie's company as backseat buddies, and is looking a little bit more comfortable and a little less strained, a lot less wincing than before. And then Marathon and Birdie are practicing a very cool elaborate thief friend handshake.
Kit (as Birdie): So it's over under, than snap, high five.
Penn (as Marathon): Mhmm. Into the hand fist.
Kit (as Birdie): Yes yes yes. Mhm.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay, here, let's practice what we got so far. Over under,
Kit (as Birdie): Okay.
Penn (as Marathon): - snap, high five, hand fist. And then corner round. Add in a haka bow. Okay you remember the haka bow?
Kit (as Birdie): [very convincing...] Ah, yes.
Kit: She doesn't.
Kit (as Birdie): Yes.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay. Okay, so just like this.
Penn: [laughing] And Marathon does something that looks a little impossible with her fingers. Had they maybe not been broken so many times it would have been possible.
Kit: Birdie tries to mimic that as best as she can while watching Marathon.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay, okay.
Kit (as Birdie): Like that?
Penn (as Marathon): Yep. And what's our finish? We gotta come up with the finish, the flourish? What's the boom? What's the what's the toodaloo, the [thinking noise] we have to have our own, you know.
Kit (as Birdie): Mhmm the flourish, the big finale.
Cameron (as Emma): Um, do a spin.
Penn (as Marathon): Well we can't spin in the car.
Cameron (as Emma): Get creative.
Kit (as Birdie): [small laugh] We could do one of those, like uh, back to back pose with like,
Penn (as Marathon): [gasp]
Kit (as Birdie): - you know, like, one of our feet is up and touching the sole of the other one's feet or like we're posing back to back and our arms are folded or something like that.
Penn (as Marathon): Yes.
Kit (as Birdie): So we can have like a standing version and a car version.
Penn (as Marathon): Mmmm. Mhmm. Mhmm. And we have a little mini one
Kit (as Birdie): Mhm.
Penn (as Marathon): so we can finish with our fingers in the car, but then when we're outside, [everyone else starts laughing] we back to back. [laugh] Okay, okay. So funny. Yeah, well, but uh this is gonna be pretty cool handshake, Birdie.
Kit (as Birdie): Yeah.
Penn (as Marathon): I haven't had a cool team handshake since the team, so this is a big privilege.
Kit (as Birdie): I know. I'm very excited to be able to show it off whenever we go new places and meet new people.
Penn (as Marathon): [slightly quieter] and steal new things. [snicker]
Sydney (as Cassidy): Are you going to be trying to do this fancy handshake with other people? Or are you going to do it to each other in front of these other people to show off?
Kit (as Birdie): To intimidate them.
Penn (as Marathon): Obviously. Yeah,
Sydney (as Cassidy): Ah.
Penn (as Marathon): it's to show up. What are you talk- other people aren't, I can't expect other people to know the handshake. We've practiced it.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Yeah. You're practicing a handshake to use on new people.
Penn (as Marathon): Yes.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Not with the new people.
Kit (as Birdie): Yeah.
Penn (as Marathon): To flex on new people. Yeah.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Cool.
Kit (as Birdie): Yeah, show how cool and how friendly we are.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Uh huh.
Kit (as Birdie): Yeah.
Sydney: Cassidy looks skeptically back to her maps.
Penn (as Marathon): [on an exhale] Whoo.
Kit (as Birdie): Cassidy do you want to join?
Penn (as Marathon): Yeah, we could do -
Kit (as Birdie): Maybe you and Marathon can have a handshake.
Penn (as Marathon): [awkward laughing] Yeah uh-
Kit (as Birdie): [giggle]
Sydney (as Cassidy): Well, I think right now we're off on a quest to go answer a great summons from our friends in the Advantia.
Penn (as Marathon): Yeah~! I haven't seen Advantia in so long.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Oh~, I could have gone longer.
Penn (as Marathon): What? Come on you guys! I don't understand what you guys got all this beef about. They got - they really helped us out in Tree All, I've got a lot of acquaintances. A lot of people helped with the radio station up there.
Kit (as Birdie): Mmm. I don't know I think they're all - I don't know.
Penn (as Marathon): What? What's your beef, Birdie?
Kit (as Birdie): Well, I've only met like a couple of them, but they said that people from Sasnak are weird and whatever. And also my my guardian Zan didn't like them so.
Penn (as Marathon): Mm. Well.
Sydney (as Cassidy): I agree with Zan.
Kit (as Birdie): See? Yeah.
Penn (as Marathon): Well, I also think people from Sasnak are weird, but in a cool way.
Penn: And Marathon finger guns Birdie and then tries to initiate the handshake.
Kit: Birdie narrows her eyes slightly and then of course goes along with the handshake. She loves it.
[handshake clapping noises]
Sydney (as Cassidy): Emma - You sure this this errand is going to be useful?
Cameron (as Emma): Umm. Sure?
Sydney (as Cassidy): I don't really like being summoned. I mean, I guess it's gonna pay well, probably.
Cameron (as Emma): I will say it does make us feel kind of important.
Sydney (as Cassidy): I guess.
Penn (as Marathon): Yeah. Hey, how far or the way out of the way is this again?
Sydney (as Cassidy): I mean it probably only adds like a day or two, it's in the roughly the same direction.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay.
Sydney (as Cassidy): In theory this, whatever they are calling for us for, will pay well enough that it's worth it.
Penn (as Marathon): Neat, neat. Cool.
Sydney (as Cassidy): And since we've made our independence clause in our contract, we can do this while you hang around.
Penn (as Marathon): Wait, do you work for the Advantia?
Cameron (as Emma): No~.
Kit (as Birdie): Wait do we?
Sydney (as Cassidy): No.
Kit (as Birdie): Okay.
Sydney (as Cassidy): This job might be.
Cameron (as Emma): Mmm.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay.
Sydney (as Cassidy): If that counts.
Penn (as Marathon): Now, I was wondering, if I, you know, could I help out and slash would I be able to get a cut if I help out or anything?
Sydney (as Cassidy): I mean, it depends on what the job is, I guess.
Penn (as Marathon): That's fair.
Sydney (as Cassidy): You're here. So
Penn (as Marathon): Y'all aren't like doing complicated mechanized little things are ya?
Cameron (as Emma): You know I couldn't tell from the song what skill set would be needed necessarily.
Penn (as Marathon): I see. I see.
Cameron (as Emma): But from what I've seen, the few members of the Advantia I've met have all been wildly different from each other. So they just seem kind of strange overall, and I don't know what to expect and I have no idea what skill set whoever summoning us might have.
Penn (as Marathon): I don't know Scott was fairly normal.
Sydney (as Cassidy): I'm hoping for the less mystical ones this time. So it's possible - there are cool ones.
Cameron (as Emma): So we'll see when we get there what the job is.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Yeah, I guess it doesn't hurt to like hear it.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay.
Cameron (as Emma): Yeah. We can always say no once we get there and leave.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Yeah.
Cameron (as Emma): Do you want me to drive faster, Cassidy? Why are you tapping your fingers so much?
Sydney (as Cassidy): Yes.
Cameron (as Emma): Okay.
Sydney (as Cassidy): I would love for you to drive faster.
Cameron (as Emma): Okay.
Cameron: Emma speeds up.
Sydney (as Cassidy): I'm just tired of sitting here contemplating this decision.
Nick: We get a shot outside the rig as the large tires throw up a rooster tail of gravel and mud as the rig accelerates into the distance. The drive takes some hours to get into range of this radio projection where you're hearing the song. We cut away to two shadowy figures as a proximity alert begins to sound on their sensors.
Alli: [Be-beep be-beep]
Kira (as Ciphera): Oh, hey, it's time. It's going off.
Alli (as Renn): Already?
Kira (as Ciphera): Yeah, get moving.
Alli (as Renn): Thought we'd have another day. Vacation's over I guess.
Kira (as Ciphera): Have we started? We're on vacation?
Alli (as Renn): Weren't we?
Kira (as Ciphera): Just get your things.
Alli (as Renn): All right. Saddle up.
Nick: And the next thing that we see - the rig has been driving through stands of evergreens for the last couple of hours. The elevation has gone from rolling hills to winding ravines and you all are able to pick your way in the truck to where you find this radio transmitter. It looks like it's been set up in a clearing near the base of some low cliffs and as you park on the edge of the trees, you can see an antenna with a blinking red light that appears to have been set up in a patch of open ground so that the signal can be sent skyward.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Well I suppose this is it then. Looks very, uh - civilized? All this wilderness and no people around.
Penn (as Marathon): Yeah it's beautiful. Oh my gosh.
Kit: Birdie is immediately looking up and seeing if anyone is hiding in the trees or going to like come and try and sneak up on them.
Nick: Would you be hiding yourselves?
Kira: Yes. Ciphera is definitely hiding nearby in the trees if they were able to arrive there before these individuals.
Alli: Renn is not. Renn is a dark silhouette, because I assume it's pretty sunny up on top of this cliff, on the back of what appears to be an overlarge motorcycle until you see a tail lash.
Nick: So Birdie, you see the silhouette of what appears to be someone up on top of one of these cliffs observing with some sort of mechanical contraption.
Kit (as Birdie): [yelling] Hey!
Cameron: Emma steps down out of the driver's seat and picks up her great sword.
Kit: Birdie was sticking her head out the window and so she opens the door and gets out after she yells the hey, and tries to look as presentable as possible and intimidating.
Sydney: Cassidy has her bow very quickly in the harness that her back.
Penn: [laughing] Marathon has seen everybody pull out their weapons, and has decided to stay in the car.
Nick: So Birdie has pointed out there's someone up on the cliff, she's shouted for their attention.
Sydney: Cassidy checks everywhere but the cliff. There's a lot of forest but just as a habit because someone on the cliff is obvious and is also potentially a good ambush technique.
Nick: Let's do an opposed role for Perception against the Stealth role of the person you're trying to look for, but you have three additional black die because she has had quite a bit of time to get settled in and build a hide.
Kira: My Stealth is one green and two yellow.
Nick: So that's two reds and a purple and three blacks.
Sydney: So yeah, my end pool is two yellows and a green from my skills, plus three blacks, plus two reds and a purple from this other characters skills.
Sydney: That is two successes and five threats.
Nick: Oh. With that amount of threats because of this other person's skills, you know that there's a person somewhere, but they are very mobile and you are very distracted trying to figure out how as essentially, these two people get to make the first move as you all are assessing your situation.
Sydney: Cassidy is watching in the trees for like weirdly bending branches or anything and she is pretty sure there is someone but the cognitive load of trying to watch all of the trees around the edge of a clearing means that she is just lost in this task, as the other ones are getting out of the rig and doing normal walking out things, yelling at people up on cliffs.
Penn (as Marathon): Is there anybody out there? Do you see anything, Cassidy?
Sydney (as Cassidy): There's at least another person out here besides that one.
Kit (as Birdie): Where?
Nick: As you point towards the figure on the cliff, they are no longer there. They have vanished from where they were silhouetted by the sun.
Kit: Birdie looked to look at Cassidy when Cassidy was speaking and turned back and is like
Kit (as Birdie): Ahh!
Cameron: Emma's not paying attention. She's stretching.
Kit (as Birdie): Does anyone else think this is weird? This is, this is weird.
Cameron (as Emma): What's weird?
Kit (as Birdie): Oh come on!
Cameron (as Emma): What?
Alli: In the days of downtime they've had to prepare for this arrival, they've outfitted the clearing with surround sound speakers and though the figure on the top of the cliff is currently gone, you can hear their voice ring out and it just says
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] I don't think it's too weird at all. We're just trying to vet and appropriately assess threats before you come closer to our camp. Cause ooh boy did you set off our sensors.
Penn (as Marathon): [freaking out] This is scary Advantia. This is not nice, Advantia.
Kit (as Birdie): See! All Advantia is scary Adventia.
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] I don't think that's accurate.
Cameron (as Emma): I don't think that's not the case.
Sydney (as Cassidy): You're hiding in the rig at least. Maybe [laugh] just duck your head back inside the window and they might not be able to hit you.
Penn (as Marathon): [scared] Okay.
Cameron: Marathon slowly rolls up the window. [laughing]
Kira: So Ciphera's ultimate goal here is if they get out of the rig or if they're in there, I think she wants to try to sneak up behind the rig and get on top of it just for the theatrics and first impressions. But while the voice is booming over the speakers in the lull, I think there are a series of four distinct metal pangs like metal on metal that ring out from somewhere in that copes of trees, which you would know to be the number of individuals that are here that are not us.
Nick: You don't have to roll to get into a position to end up on top of the truck because it's not like you are trying to get advantage in impending combat.
Sydney: Cassidy hears these pangs and points 1 2 3 4 5 and the last one is on the rig and she turns and spins.
Penn (as Marathon): There's somebody on top of the car! There's somebody on top of the car! Um Cassidy! Uh Birdie, Emma!
Nick: And as you all turn to look at the top of the rig there is indeed a person who is materialized there.
Kira: So as you turn around and look at the rig, there's a shimmering of light on top of it and you can see that just the air is displaced, probably a familiar active camouflage equivalent technology. As the person comes into focus, they are in a squatting posture with a long staff across their knees. They're wearing a poncho drape that hangs down and covers most of their body and that's what is shifting in color. They have a black balaclava and scarf that is bunched up around their shoulders. You can see dirty blonde hair that is bound into a long braid that drapes over their shoulder and gets lost in the balaclava and faintly you can see a line of multicolored feathers that are braided into the hair. And they're just perched there watching you.
Penn (as Marathon): Is somebody going to do something? Are they gonna, are they going to kill-kill me? Or -
Kira (as Ciphera): Are you here answering the summons?
Sydney (as Cassidy): Are you guys the ones playing Moon River?
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] Yeah. How did y'all like that song?
Alli: Comes the voice over the speakers again.
Kira (as Ciphera): I hear it's a classic.
Cameron (as Emma): It gets a little repetitive.
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] You didn't have to listen to it the whole time.
Sydney (as Cassidy): We had to figure out where you were.
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] Eh spot checks. Triangulation.
Sydney: Cassidy is still squinting at the other spots in the trees trying to see if she can locate those other people.
Kira (as Ciphera): Don't worry. You're not in danger if you are who you say you are.
Kit (as Birdie): Mhm.
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] And you are who you say you are, right?
Kit (as Birdie): [Birdie, Emma, and Cassidy all overlapping] We've never introduced ourselves.
Sydney (as Cassidy): [Birdie, Emma, and Cassidy all overlapping] I'm not sure we've said who we are.
Cameron (as Emma): [Birdie, Emma, and Cassidy all overlapping] I don't think we've said who we are, [just Emma continues on] but yes, we did come because Moon River was played.
Alli (as Renn): [over speakers] Good enough for us.
Alli: And through the trees comes clomping, a combination tractor, velociraptor. It's probably in length about a clydesdale. It has a face like the plow on the front of a train, but also with a little headlamp, you know, for good visibility. Its torso to the ground kind of has a tiller, almost like on a tractor for messing up agriculture fields, but it doesn't seem like there's anything hooked up to the back where it looks like maybe there should be something hooked up on the thighs, but there's just a big saddle and a very amiable looking lady on the back.
Sydney: Is it organic or metal?
Alli: Oh, it's very metal. It actually has some of those exhausts on tractors that are just those straight pipes that just plume, it has those and it doesn't look like it's great for the environment. But you know, it's a work in progress.
Nick: And your eyes are immediately drawn to this strange piece of wild tech, but secondarily, you can't help but take in the rider who appears to be the partner of the figure that is standing on top of the rig.
Alli: They see a shorter woman - she's about 5'2". She's got a heart shaped face and sepia skin, very hawkish nose, it looks like it's probably been broken at least once. Dark brown hair, it's fluffed up into a nice little headband with a long ponytail, as she has such thick glasses that they require action straps - it's got the strap the whole way around the back that magnifies her eyes like you would not believe but they're super round, so it kind of gives her a slightly owlish appearance. She's not dressed for combat though, she has a pink cotton button down shirt rolled up to like her biceps, what appear to be mom jorts. She has a big floppy sun hat, like you'd see on a beach or for gardening maybe, but also very notably, her left leg has a prosthetic from about the mid thigh down and some burn scars on the exposed skin, but she looks pleased as punch to see you guys.
Nick: So Renn and Ciphera, you take in this group that you were given the job to summon and negotiate with. What do they see when they look at the members of the Patina?
Cameron: Emma is standing there quite relaxed. She has her great sword held up and leaning against one shoulder and as soon as the Velociraptor tractor came into the clearing, her eyes locked on it and have not moved since. She has approaching shoulder length hair, it's like mid-neck, long enough that it's slightly in her face and is wearing a big, bulky poofy rust orange sweater and cargo pants and big chonky black boots. She's about 5'8" and looks to be mid 20s-ish. Light brown hair, brown eyes that are still fixated on this magnificent machine.
Kit: Birdie is a young woman that looks to be in her mid to early 20s. She has rust reddish brown colored hair that's pulled back right now into some scruffy braids. The most notable thing about her right now I guess is that she's holding a hockey stick wrapped in barbed wire at specifically Ciphera because she feels the most threatened by them. So other major bullet points about her, she's got a big backpack on that she keeps on her at all times, it says has little patches on it that says 'keep out', 'danger', all that kind of stuff. She's got a hodgepodge of different clothes that kind of looks like she picked them up as the years went on and she's got a big gnarly scar up the right side of her face.
Penn: Marathon stumbles out of the car door and onto the ground and is scrambling, looking up at the person on top of the car and then freezing with wide eyes as she looks at the Velocitractor. Marathon has a lot of piercings and very stringy greasy mullet going on right now that's a fiery orange with shaved sides and she's got pale skin that's definitely marked with bruises and cuts - cuts that are mostly healing but that look like they were bad and are healing up. She's got a radio uniform on, actually, that is currently getting much dustier on the ground as she panics over the two ambushers basically.
Sydney: And then Cassidy - Ciphera you realize somehow she saw you, this figure. She also is definitely - thinks she seen all of your decoys, but she saw you through your invisible cape. She's around 5'5" or 5'6", she's got brown kind of coppery hair done up in a crown braid with a couple of fresh flowers woven through it. She's got a brown canvas jacket that's unzipped to show a black of tank top underneath. She's got flexible work pants, leather work boots, and she has a compound bow with an arrow knocked but not pulled back, but very alert and watching the two of them and their imaginary friends.
Kira: As the group arranges outside of the rig, the individual on top of the truck pushes themselves to their feet. They make a snapping motion with the staff that they're holding and a small foothold pops out of the bottom and they stand up on it sort of like a sideways pogo stick, and then there's a small concussion and sort of a wub in the air and it propels her upwards in a forward arc that lands her between them and the Velocitractor. And she lands with as much pageantry as she can reasonably manage before straightening back up and shaking the staff again, and she pulls down the balaclava and shakes it out a little bit and frees her braid from the trapping.
Up close you can tell that she has sort of perpetually ruddy skin, it's definitely of a lighter shade, but her cheeks are consistently flushed and she has a smattering of dusky freckles across her nose. She is missing her left ear completely. In its place, there is sort of a metal fin, like a fish fin, that is curved into a partial radar dish that seems to be articulating itself as she moves. She's gripping her staff in her left hand which is missing three fingers - her pointer, her middle, and her pinky - and it has a metallic fastening on the wrist that leads into this metal latticework that goes over the back of her hand and ends in middle fingers that seem to be anchored to the knuckles with these small silver discs. And she has some burns along the left side of her face that makes some waxy skin. She's got a strong jaw, and she has two dark tattoos that follow the cheekbones underneath her eyes. They're sort of like less angled checkmarks, more rounded checkmarks that go out from beneath her eyes. She's wearing a pair of baggy dark culottes and some worn gray running shoes that have an orange symbol identical to the one that she has tattooed under her eyes.
Sydney (as Cassidy): You better not have dented our truck.
Kira (as Ciphera): Don't worry, the concussion is contained.
Penn (as Marathon): Wha-
Sydney (as Cassidy): Are you going to tell your friends to come out?
Kira: She smiles a little bit at that and cants head and says
Kira (as Ciphera): There's no one else here. Just us.
Alli (as Renn): Just us.
Sydney: Cassidy looks very suspicious.
Penn (as Marathon): What's going on here? Can somebody please tell me?
Penn: Marathon is dusting herself off as she's standing up.
Penn (as Marathon): I I I [ several seconds of stumbling while unable to start sentence] [pause] This is like - where you're not gonna like - Is this like a, like a fight? Are we like fighting? Is that what's going to happen?
Alli (as Renn): [overlapping with Emma] What?
Cameron (as Emma): [overlapping with Renn] No.
Alli (as Renn): No~.
Kira (as Ciphera): If we were fighting I wouldn't have jumped down in front of you.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay.
Alli (as Renn): I mean, it would have been very dramatic and pretty cool. But no, that's not what we're doing right now.
Kira (as Ciphera): You look scrappy enough. I mean, somebody beat you up already.
Penn (as Marathon): Yeah, well, you should see the other the other gal, so
Cameron (as Emma): Yeah, she looks great.
Cameron: Emma says completely straight faced.
Alli: [laugh] Renn laughs from the back of the Velocitractor.
Sydney: Cassidy can't hide a smile.
Kira: She inclines her head forward with a side long smirk to concede the point.
Alli (as Renn): Listen, we're just here to, you know, vet potential folks that should not have come to this clearing and it seems like you're probably who we were looking for and who we were somewhat expecting.
Kira (as Ciphera): Can you give us any kind of confirmation that you're probably who we’re expecting?
Cameron (as Emma): Uh. You're Advantia and we heard Moon River? [laughing] What type of information are you looking for?
Alli (as Renn): How did how did y'all get a whole song just for you? Who do you know?
Kira (as Ciphera): Pretty high profile to be this far out.
Kira: She raises her chin a little quasi imperious as she leans heavily on her staff.
Sydney (as Cassidy): If you're the ones that summoned us, you should know.
Cameron (as Emma): It was this lady named Susan. [just over it]
Sydney: Cassidy throws a sharp glance at Emma.
Cameron: Emma is still standing looking very relaxed with her zweihander and just is like shrugging.
Penn (as Marathon): Somebody who knows what's going on. Thank you, Emma.
Alli (as Renn): [the most sarcasm you've ever heard] Good. I love Susan. She's my favorite superior. Gosh, I'm glad she's sending people to us. It's fine.
Kira: The one with the staff is looking at the rest of the group and her eyes are slightly wider and she's just shaking her head ever so slightly.
Penn (as Marathon): Who-who is Susan?
Cameron (as Emma): Some Advantia lady at the Eagle Hill compound.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay, cool.
Cameron (as Emma): That's that's what I got.
Alli (as Renn): [once more dripping with sarcasm] Is that how she's pitching herself these days? Oh, good for her. [sigh] All right, I got my wand here. Let's go do wizard stuff.
Alli: She hops off of the back.
Sydney: Cassidy sighs audibly.
Penn (as Marathon): Hell yeah! I haven't seen some. Scott never did any cool wizard stuff.
Kit (as Birdie): What is cool wizard stuff?
Kira (as Ciphera): Who's Scott?
Penn (as Marathon): Who is Scott? Oh, Scott. Sorry. Scott was uh, he was our Advantia member up at Tree All Mountain. He helped us out a lot. So mostly just kind of techy things. Yeah.
Alli (as Renn): All right. Cool.
Penn (as Marathon): He wasn't, you know, he did some cool harmonica solos, I guess? Had his own little show on MTR Late Night.
Alli (as Renn): It'd have to be late night for a harmonica to get aired, huh?
Alli: [laughing] She says she gets off of her Velocitractor.
Penn (as Marathon): Not as late as you would expect.
Alli (as Renn): Oh, that's troubling.
Kira (as Ciphera): Well, I guess we should take them back to the campsite.
Alli (as Renn): Yeah, might as well. All right. Come on. You know, Susan, so then everything's obviously fine.
Cameron (as Emma): I don't know if I'd say we know Susan. We met her once.
Alli (as Renn): You know her name. That's enough.
Cameron (as Emma): Op all right.
Alli (as Renn): Believe me.
Kira (as Ciphera): I like your sword, by the way. It's very large.
Cameron (as Emma): Thank you. It's new.
Kira (as Ciphera): Doesn't look new.
Cameron (as Emma): Well, it's new to me.
Kira (as Ciphera): Ah.
Cameron (as Emma): It's probably older than I am, though.
Kira: She looks a little sideways at Birdie and cants her head back and forth a little bit.
Kira (as Ciphera): That's a nice stick, but I like mine better.
Kit (as Birdie): Well, I like mine better, so.
Alli (as Renn): Do you curl?
Kit (as Birdie): Sor- no um - Like the sport? Uh no I mostly just hit people with this.
Alli (as Renn): I guess you need a broom for that other one.
Kit (as Birdie): Yeah.
Alli (as Renn): Nevermind. All right, giddy up.
Nick: So you see these two mysterious agents, who apparently know Susan, ride their Velocitractor into the woods. You're able to hop into the rig and luckily the trees are far enough apart that you're able to pick your way through and back to their camp. What all do they see as they pull to a stop at your campsite?
Alli: There are lots of work tables strewn out in the sun. There's a pretty sizable divot dug for a firepit but there's also a fold out camper that when you look at it, your eyes kind of feel like it's a trick at first, because it just looks like mirrors. A door and then mirrors around it. And one of the panels on it starts to spark as you arrive and she jumps off of her mount and goes and just bangs at once with her fist and it becomes a mirror again. She's like,
Alli (as Renn): I gotta get I gotta get those replacement parts next time we're in town. This is this is out of hand.
Kira (as Ciphera): I'll scavenge something as soon as I can find it. Not everything's easy to find. Sort of high tech.
Alli (as Renn): We got to upcycle. Upcycle.
Kira (as Ciphera): I don't think you will be to scrap Servo here.
Alli (as Renn): I do not want you to scrap Servo. I love him.
Nick: Servo gives a sound like a friendly gurgle mixed with a misfiring diesel engine and a little burp of smoke comes out of the back.
Alli: She goes over to pet his faces and is like
Alli (as Renn): You're so good.
Nick: It either nuzzles against you or a gear slips in its neck servos - it's hard to tell.
Alli: She pets his mane of feathers. They look like vulture feathers that they've just scavenged and made into a little nice hairstyle. A little mane for him.
Kira: The woman with the staff turns around to the other four as they're approaching and seeing this exchange and rolls her eyes a little bit but has a smile.
Kira (as Ciphera): So um. Welcome. If you could just kind of leave everything where it is that'd be nice.
Alli (as Renn): It's my process.
Kira (as Ciphera): Yeah, it's her process. Um names? All around names?
Alli (as Renn): Oh, shoot, I forgot again.
Sydney: Cassidy stands in the back with their arms crossed and waits for someone else to answer first.
Penn (as Marathon): Uh [clears throat several times] I'm Marathon Messenger. You may have heard of me. MTR 1153 Going the Distance or, you know, more popularly my ice derby days. Ice derby MVP. Ice derby team captain. You know how it goes?
Alli (as Renn): Not curling though?
Penn (as Marathon): No, not not curling.
Alli (as Renn): That's the only sport I keep track of. But it sounds really cool.
Penn (as Marathon): But you've heard you've heard you've heard me right? Yeah?
Alli: Could I roll to see?
Nick: Sure. That's probably Classical Knowledge.
Cameron: What's the difficulty to have heard of Marathon before?
Nick: The difficulty to have heard of Marathon - have you all ever spent time in Tree All Mountain within the last five years?
Alli: We probably breezed in and out of there -
Kira: I definitely have.
Alli: - to resupply.Yeah.
Kira: I've definitely been in that area in the last five years. So I think I certainly would know who Marathon is.
Nick: Yeah. Uh.
Kira: Probably more from ice derby than the radio.
Nick: And I was thinking Renn is probably more likely heard about it from the radio than ice derby, so let's say average difficulty.
Cameron: Five advantages.
Nick: So you failed, but five advantages means you don't know who Marathon is, but you know about some interesting things related to Marathon. So
Alli: Like scandals?
Nick: Yeah, let's say the only thing that you know about Marathon is some of the scandal that got her kicked out of ice derby in the first place.
Kira: Is it okay if Ciphera knows who Marathon is?
Nick: Yeah, yeah, absolutely. I think Ciphera, you probably also just know in general more about Marathon. I feel like Renn only knows the drama part.
Kira: Ciphera has been leaning on her staff and she pulls it up and points it in Marathon's direction, not threateningly, just gesticulating and she says with some furrowed eyebrows,
Kira (as Ciphera): Marathon. I know that name. You were ice derby you said, right?
Penn (as Marathon): [as excited as a kid on Christmas morning] Yeah! Yeah, I was. [clears throat and regains control] I was so
Kira (as Ciphera): Oh, I mean, no wonder you're scrappy. What are you doing all the way out here?
Penn (as Marathon): Oh, you know, I'm uh wandering with these roguish cool adventures here. [clears throat] We're off um,
Penn: Marathon looks a little bit towards the group.
Penn (as Marathon): We're treasure huntin but we're taking a little break. We're taking a little break for uh, well, I think Miss Cassidy has the run of things here, but just so you know, there is a pretty cool name attached to this whole project. Uh what - Yeah, yeah, yeah. Your name, Madame?
Kira: She lets the staff fall and she flicks her wrist and you now see for the first time the staff is actually in three different sections that also have these little silver discs, splitting it apart. And she flicks her wrist twice, and it swings back on an axis and clacks into one piece that she's just holding by a little handle sort of like a mini briefcase, almost. And when it swings around, it's not connected by anything, so the pieces swing out into open air on a fixed access point before snapping back together. And she taps her chest with it and she says
Kira (as Ciphera): Ciphera. Uh Ciphera Vex. Probably haven't heard of me. I'd be a little more upset if you had, to be honest. But I know a little something about treasure hunting, if you want to use that term.
Penn (as Marathon): Well, Ms. Vex, that's very cool hand. You know I'd check it out later. If you have time. I'm sure Emma'd like check it out later for different reasons, but um I think I'll-I'll I'll
Penn: Marathon looks carefully realizing that she's started a regular conversation. She's like,
Penn (as Marathon): I'll talk to you later, but I think Miss Cassidy here has probably more expertise in this situation.
Penn: And she steps, angles herself so that Cassidy has to talk next.
Sydney: Cassidy is chewing on her lip a little bit at hearing her name be told and so much information be [laughing] shared immediately but in theory, these are also the people we were sent to meet and making friends is probably good. It's just it's good that someone else is doing it. And Cassidy goes
Sydney (as Cassidy): Well as Marathon said I'm Cassidy. I guess I'm in charge. This is the Patina. We're mercenary people who do stuff that apparently the Advantia want.
Alli (as Renn): That's good to hear.
Kira (as Ciphera): Okay, just Cassidy. So it's just the four of you then that's your whole mercenary team?
Sydney (as Cassidy): Actually, only three of us. Marathon's a passenger.
Penn: Marathon gives a click and a finger guns.
Kira (as Ciphera): Hmm.
Alli (as Renn): Are you on your way to a new league? Or
Penn (as Marathon): We're treasure huntin.
Alli (as Renn): Okay.
Penn (as Marathon): New new, uh new era of the Messenger life so,
Alli (as Renn): Good for yo- everybody, you know, we deserve to be able to iterate, don't we? Something I like to think.
Penn (as Marathon): You know, I believe in second chances.
Kira: Ciphera purses her lips and squints so her emerald green eyes are just poking out a little bit as she looks from Cassidy to Marathon but doesn't say anything, and then shifts her gaze to Birdie and Emma.
Cameron: [laughing] We've been standing quietly while Marathon keeps talking after everyone else finishes talking. So we're like we're gonna - ope no okay - eh oh - mm.
Kira (as Ciphera): So Marathon is for the words too right?
Penn (as Marathon): [low laugh] Well well [clears throat] uh.
Kit: Birdie has been staring at Ciphera's stick the whole time and is just like god that's so cool. But doesn't actually she tries not to let it on that she thinks that it's the coolest thing she's ever seen. And she's like,
Kit (as Birdie): I'm, um. I'm Birdie.
Cameron: Emma gives a little wave.
Cameron (as Emma): And I am Emma.
Kira: She nods to all this and folds her arms over her chest, holding her collapsed staff and then turns to her associate with a concerned expression.
Alli: She looks back and assumes that concern expression is about something she's done and then remembers,
Alli (as Renn): I didn't actually introduce myself. I forgot again. My name is Renn. Renn Dare. Uh agent. Wizard. Mostly recluse. What can you do for us is what I want to know?
Cameron (as Emma): What do you need us to do?
Alli (as Renn): I'm so glad you asked.
Cameron (as Emma): Y'all summoned us so...
Sydney: Cassidy has eyebrows furrowed from behind Emma.
Nick: The Advantia agents herd the members of the Patina to somewhere more comfortable where they can sit and talk in detail.
Kira: So we find the group gathered around this large fold out table and a hodgepodge of different chairs, traditional camp chairs with very tattered cloth hanging off of it, barely hanging together, a few metal folding chairs,
Alli: One chair's just a stump.
Kira (as Ciphera): The stump is mine. I pulled that over, so I'm going to sit on it. Um.
Sydney (as Cassidy): The stump is a good choice.
Kira: We see Ciphera sitting on the stump and as everybody is talking, she is just casually playing with the staff waving it through the air. And occasionally one of the parts disconnects and swings around on one of those axes before snapping back to it. Holding one in each hand with the middle section bobbling between it almost like devil sticks. Just very idly as you guys are all sitting around talking.
Kira (as Ciphera): So what we need is, I guess, force and I'm - to be frank, I'm a little concerned that, well, there's only three of you.
Alli (as Renn): Four kinda.
Kira (as Ciphera): Well, they said three, so I'm going to take them at their word.
Alli (as Renn): I count bodies not intention.
Kira (as Ciphera): Okay, well, I count what they tell us.
Cameron (as Emma): We'll say three and a half.
Kira (as Ciphera): Okay, so -
Penn (as Marathon): [slightly under breath] I'm a full god damn person.
Cameron (as Emma): I'm just saying it's undecided on whether or not you're helping us at this point Marathon, so like, you're kind of there but not.
Penn (as Marathon): Okay. Sounds good. Thank you. Appreciate it.
Kira (as Ciphera): So, you have a sword. You have a bow.
Cameron (as Emma): Mhm.
Kira (as Ciphera): You have a sharp stick. How do you handle combat? I mean, that doesn't really seem like a lot.
Sydney (as Cassidy): What kind of combat?
Kira (as Ciphera): The heavy, dangerous, kind,
Alli (as Renn): Violent. Visceral.
Kira (as Ciphera): Against heavy tech.
Cameron: Emma points back at the rig and there's a giant exosuit hanging on the side of it.
Sydney (as Cassidy): And we've got firearms.
Kira (as Ciphera): [unsure] Mm.
Alli (as Renn): That's one suit and a couple of guns and a hockey stick. Which is - do you want me to fix that up for you? I can do something maybe...
Kira: Ciphera looks over at Renn maybe a little possessively clutching her own stick a little closer.
Alli (as Renn): I just touched yours up. It's fine.
Kit (as Birdie): Wait, like you would do that?
Alli (as Renn): Yeah. That's literally my job to improve other people's lives and you kind - I don't want you to die on a job we send you to do.
Kira (as Ciphera): [bit defeated] She's very talented.
Alli (as Renn): Thank you.
Kit (as Birdie): Mmm.
Kira (as Ciphera): Yeah. Just, you know, don't give her this, maybe.
Alli (as Renn): I'm not gonna do that - it's a hockey stick. I'm gonna do some- I'm gonna do something else it'll be different.
Kira (as Ciphera): All right.
Alli (as Renn): Cool and different.
Kira (as Ciphera): All right. Fine.
Kit (as Birdie): I like cool and different.
Alli: Renn walks over with a pitcher of ice water, which it is odd that they would have ice out here. Some glasses - she doesn't just bring a pitcher.
Sydney (as Cassidy): So improving people's lives is your mission?
Alli (as Renn): Well mine personally, it's a creed I like to stick to.
Kit (as Birdie): [more positive than before] Hmm.
Cameron (as Emma): So back to the force thing, what exactly are y'all sending us up against that you're concerned?
Kira (as Ciphera): Um okay. So there's a nearby town with an Advantia outpost, I guess you could call it, sort of a center, a base. And, you know, it's had a lot of issues with bandits in the area for a while, but it kind of recently stopped sending signals. And I went and poked around a little bit and there's - well, I guess you could call it a warlord with his cronies that moved into the town outside. It's called Iota, it's very tiny and well, I guess it's like a siege but they have a lot of tech and I'm - I can fight but I can't fight big tech like that and we're only two people.
Alli (as Renn): Servo's not a fighter. He's a lover.
Kira (as Ciphera): He's a lover. Yeah.
Kit (as Birdie): He is pretty cute.
Kira (as Ciphera): Yeah, he is!
Alli (as Renn): He's- tou want to pet him?
Kit (as Birdie): I can pet him?
Alli (as Renn): Course. He's the best boy.
Kit (as Birdie): [quietly] Okay, I like these people, never mind.
Kit: She does get up and go start to pet Servo.
Alli (as Renn): Watch the tiller.
Nick: Birdie petting this kind of feels like petting a lawn mower. It's metal. There's a shell. It doesn't appear to react. You get farm equipment feeling - this would be like if you pet the rig. You do not discern a soul. And yet,
Kit (as Birdie): I know he appreciates it.
Alli (as Renn): Oh, he does. He told me.
Sydney (as Cassidy): So you can talk to tech?
Alli (as Renn): Blimey, I just like guessed.
Kira (as Ciphera): It's more of an infer type of thing, you know?
Alli (as Renn): Yeah.
Sydney (as Cassidy): Ah.
Nick: A large panel falls open on the front of Servo and looks kind of like a mouth but it's in the chest and there's grinding gears in there.
Kira (as Ciphera): Oh, he's smiling.
Alli (as Renn): He loves that.
Nick: Renn, that is the low fuel indicator.
Alli (as Renn): He loves it, don't worry. [laughing]
Kit (as Birdie): Aw~.
Alli: She goes over and grabs his coal trough, or rather leads him to it because she can't lift that.
Cameron: Emma is trying so hard to stay on task and not get distracted by this magical tractor and is struggling, but is just trying to continue looking at Ciphera and not pay attention to the tractor.
Nick: Emma you can't help but wonder how it recognizes fuel is nearby as it crouches down and begins to vacuum up coal from an open trough.
Cameron (as Emma): [mechanical fangirl moment possibly said aloud] Ah! It's so cool! [back to serious and definitely out loud] So warlord taking over town?
Kira (as Ciphera): I mean, yeah.
Alli (as Renn): Mhm.
Kira (as Ciphera): It's an Advantia outpost so there's a lot of valuable stuff there. Hopefully, still people I couldn't really verify that, but I got in. I took a little look around - the towns people are understandably freaked out, but it's just a tall order for us. So it kind of seems like it's a tall order for you and I don't I really don't mean offense by that, but they have some heavy tech.
Sydney (as Cassidy): And access to more it sounds like.