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 Chapter 4: The Path Ahead

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PostSubject: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Tue May 17, 2016 1:05 am

Chapter 4: The Path Ahead

City State of Romoa, Redhold
The Ruined Village


Redhold's gates were closed by the time Marlow got to them, forcing him to spend the night outside the city walls in one of the few mostly-intact buildings remaining. Wild animals roamed the ruined land, Carrion birds picking at corpses. They were making so much noise it was impossible for anyone nearby to remain asleep. One near Marlow plucked out an eye from a dead baby girl and showed it off to him before flying away with its prize. 

Small fires dotted the landscape, a testament to how hot their creators made them. As dawn had come and passed, the people of Redhold returned to what they had been doing for the last several days: looking for possible survivors and reclaiming lost property.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Tue May 17, 2016 1:33 am

Marlow wished with all his heart to get some decent shut-eye, but the noises of animals feasting on the dead were too close and too many. A bird that looked black in the dark pecked at the body of an infant, carelessly lifting away a human eyeball to eat from a distance. Marlow shuddered and wrapped himself tighter with his blanket and newspapers.

No matter how he tried to sleep, the sounds of birds wings to and from the corpse near him kept stirring him from dreams, and at last he gave up trying, lit a fire, roasted some of the herd beast meat he had harvested on the way to the thief's burrow, and ate. He let his small campfire warm him and took extra precaution to keep it carefully contained.

When the city opened its gates once more, Marlow heard, gathered his things, and wandered in. He got some laughs and jeers at the guards on his way to the inn. The inn keeper wasn't happy about lending out a room during daylight to a raccoon-eyed hoodlum like Marlow, but he lent out the room with the most nonexistant roof, and the rest of Marlow's day passed in a series of Z's (zzz). When he woke, he refilled his potions, paid his rent, and sat down outside the inn to watch the bustle and eat some of his food portions he'd gotten from the relief effort.

The bread had begun to mold, so he tore it off and attempted to feed the sparrows. The bigger birds were stuffed and sleeping from human meat and had no interest in mere morsels. As he chewed, he thought. He thought about his distant cousin. He thought about his quest for money. The thief. The bear. The probably-rich patron who'd offered it. The guards. The city. The dead.

TL;DR: Sleeps, refills potions, eats, and ponders.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 12:40 am

Chapter 4: The Path Ahead

City State of Romoa, Redhold
The Ruined Village

Marlow had once again slept in the inn, although contrary to what he thought, it wasn't free as the innkeeper had pickpocketed the last 10 Gil he had for payment. Alvar's referral could only get one so far.

*Marlow lost 10 Gil*

There wasn't anything to be seen on the quest board, as like the day before the only quest available was for the stolen sword, although how far gone the thief was now was unknown.

As Marlow was eating, one of the villagers nearby sighed heavily and wondered out loud, "I wonder what happened to my old pendant? It was enchanted so it should have survived the attack but I don't know where it is after all the chaos. I know it was slightly gaudy, but it was my mother's."

*Moderater Challenge: This is a quest for an accessory, you are to look through the ruined village outside for the missing item. Be warned, multiple rolls of a dice in a single thread will result in the item losing half its lvl and failing a challenge roll will result in it losing 3 levels per failure. You need to succeed 4 times to win the challenge.*
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 12:53 am

Marlow's ears perked up like a dog's at the mention of 'treat'. His attention was completely focused on the villager as he told his tale of the lost accessory and Marlow's head danced with visions of riches and sugar plums.

"Before the attack, where was it last?", Marlow asked, hoping for some information.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 12:53 am

The member 'Overly Shedding Chocobo' has done the following action : FFMSL Dice


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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 12:54 am

The villager pondered the question in consideration. "At my house! Oh, this is a good idea. I remember that I had taken it off..."

"Where is your house now?", Marlow asked, hoping for more information. There were tons of rubble piles and it would take months to pick through them all.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 12:54 am

The member 'Overly Shedding Chocobo' has done the following action : FFMSL Dice


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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 12:56 am

*Mod note: You actually have to go to the village, asking questions to work through the challenge is not what was asked. 1 additional challenge roll has been added as a result.* 
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:10 am

Oh.

----

"Where is your house?"

"In the village, weren't you listening?", the villager looked peeved even though he hadn't mentioned it.

The villager led Marlow through the labrynth of streets and out of the hold by a side-gate wide barely wide enough for a man.

"A sheep gate.", the villager noticed and explained. The walk away from the hold was pleasant and breezy, the weather mild enough to forget all about the destruction and stench of bodies. The path was well-trod and eventually they arrived at a stretch of houses nestled into a backdrop of rolling green hills, flowers, and grazing livestock. Except the fields were smolders, the flowers ash, and the livestock rare-done carcasses.

They passed through skeletons of houses, rubble piles, rubbish piles, refuse, and lives once lived. "There was an oak tree on my street.", he smiled with memories, but went silent as they passed a black column of charcoal that was once the tree. The man stopped by his house and Marlow began to examine the pile, trying to determine which room was which.

"You're not going to be able to find it just looking like that, I already tried that.", the villager folded his arms.

Marlow began to pick through a particular spot his eye was interested in, but he had to move a heavy support beam out of the way.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:10 am

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:13 am

Marlow exerted himself and moved the beam, but not without getting splinters into his blackened palms. It creaked and shifted the rocks around, creating a small dust-cloud.

He coughed paused to pluck a few prominent ones out, and then went back to looking. First, he looked through  a small pile, and then he began to pick from the larger pile he was interested in and discard the rocks into the small pile he'd looked through just in case.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:13 am

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:16 am

He spotted a metal gleam and began to focus on the area. He found the remains of a wooden furnishing and a metal chain of some sort. It looked worthless to him, so he set it aside and kept looking. Slowly, he peeled rocks off one by one from the large to the small pile, sometimes having to use all of his chest and back, sometimes chucking rocks one by one.

He spotted something else and began to focus on that area, starting at the top and working away a side in hopes to reveal the thing.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:16 am

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:19 am

As he worked at the pile, he though it was a chain of some sort, but not a jewelry kind. As he'd gotten tired and sweaty, he slipped as he grabbed a rock, causing a small shift in the rubble he dug through and re-burying it. He cursed, wiped his brow, and began to go through a smaller pile at the base of the larger one.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:19 am

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:22 am

When he reached the bottom, he found something furry. He plucked it and held it up. A charred rat carcass. He tossed that.

The villager didn't look amused and wandered away. He had plenty of other matters to attend to, like what to do with his life now.

Marlow went back to digging through the larger pile, finishing the area with the large chain that apparently was once some sort of wall or light fixture but had melted. He sorted through pieces of wood and crumpled fabrics that were now at their disintegration point.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:22 am

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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:24 am

He finished the large pile. Hours had gone by now and his fingers ached. His face felt chalky and he bet that he looked like a monster from all the itching and touching he'd done absent-mindedly while working. His own sweat made him sticky.

To make matters worse, his discard pile had grown so large it had begun to mingle with another pile. There was little elsewhere to put such a pile and he almost wished he'd just left everything alone.

He began to search through the edges of his discard pile that had mingled with non-discard piles because he'd been so eager and careless.
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PostSubject: Re: Chapter 4: The Path Ahead   Wed May 18, 2016 1:24 am

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Chapter 4: The Path Ahead
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