Transcript: 8) Dangerous Dealings

Wahey!!! Thanks to the incredible hard work done by Jenny, the 8th episode of The Mortal Path has been wrangled and transcribed! What a feat! Thank you, Jenny! We’re so grateful for the hard work you’ve put in to write this transcript, and we’re so excited to be able to share this work with you all. And of course, thank you hugely to Orion for the editing! He is truly an incredible guy, and we’re so grateful to have him overseeing this.

While Orion plans to transcribe more episodes, transcription is a time consuming and difficult task, and this is a passion project of his. We’ll be updating the site with new transcriptions as they come, and will be keeping you all updated on Twitter. If anyone is interested in helping Orion write these transcripts, please email us at themortalpath@gmail.com so we can put you in touch!

So, with another HUGE thank you to Jenny and Orion, we are so pleased to present here:

Episode 8: Dangerous Dealings

https://www.podbean.com/site/EpisodeDownload/PB8D31DDXRY24

 

Created by Yubi, Gary, Kitty and ed.

 

Transcribed by Jenny and edited by Orion. Any corrections to suggest to this transcription should be sent to themortalpath@gmail.com with ‘Transcript Error’ in the subject line.

 

Timestamps written are approximate rather than exact, so as to avoid breaking up the flow of the dialogue.

 

ed as Taro: Previously on The Mortal Path…

 

[clips from previous episode with a fast, urgent battle theme beneath them all]

 

Yubi: Nerium, you have ten foot of darkvision.

 

Yubi: These streets are covered in signs and Taro, you looking around, you don’t know how you can read it, and yet there they are.

Ed: Huh.

 

Yubi: You see out of the corner of your eye in the mirror three of you walking along this alleyway.

Gary: Oh, not again.

Yubi: And the one with the blue fingers and the blue spot on her lips, puts her hand in front of your eyes on the reflection. And the other one with the red fingers, who’s much more real-looking. This cloak made of shadows seems to spring from nowhere. And she reaches up and she drops it on your shoulders…

 

Yubi: And Findex whips around and lets out this kind of “ehrh?” noise.

ed as Taro: Hehrh? Ehrh?

 

ed as Taro: Aww, I do kind of want to give it back- Nerium, Nerium, can I give him his sword back?

Kitty as Nerium: Why are you asking me?

Gary as Natalia: Let’s not give him his sword back, he stabbed Nerium!

 

ed as Taro: Look, you’re a tough chap; I think you’ll be alright if you just take a rest.

Yubi as Findex: I am pretty strong, I think. 

 

Kitty as Nerium: I can help you get some of the little bits of shards of glass out? I’ve got a hanky here – I can mop you up a bit?

 

ed as Taro: Hey Nat, I think it’s magic.

Gary as Natalia: I agree.

ed as Taro: Alright, dunk it! Dunk it!

Gary as Natalia: Okay, yes.

Gary: I dunk the candle.

Yubi: You put it under the water and the flame doesn’t go out.

 

Kitty: I come to the door and I say,

Kitty as Nerium: Have you found anything?

ed as Taro: We found some matches!

Kitty as Nerium: Well that’s good!

Gary as Natalia: And a candle.

Kitty as Nerium: What, one candle? Well, I suppose it could be useful…

Gary as Natalia: Well-

ed as Taro: Well, we did find [in unison with Gary] four candles. Yeah.

 

Gary as Natalia: Ah, um… Well, I’ve got to say, I do quite like this dress, now.

Kitty as Nerium: What, seriously? I mean, it’s very much your colour, it’s lovely; I’m just concerned about practicality.

ed as Taro: You can put some pockets in it, right?

Kitty as Nerium: Oh yeah, totally.

Gary as Natalia: Oh yes. Oh please.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Oh my God, it’s a magic cloak! It floats!

ed as Taro: … Yes! This is a very magical cloak, as I have ascertained by holding it.

 

Kitty: I mean… I might just go,

Kitty as Nerium: Oh, thank you very much!

Kitty: And climb on his back.

 

ed: I think whenever he grabs Taro’s arm, Taro does his best to flex it a little bit.

 

Gary: As soon as I get to a suitable point, I’m just breaking open this book and having a little peruse.

 

[The Mortal Path’s theme tune (by Rachel Graff) begins properly. It fades into the Fallen City tune, which has an eerie, creepy quality. It is primarily a lone stringed instrument slowly plucked to give the effect of abandoned, dripping water.]

 

Yubi: Nerium and Taro, please make me constitution saving throws.

ed: Okay.

Kitty: I mean, do I get advantage, because I’m being carried?

Yubi: Oh, yeah, you’re being carried! Taro, just Taro. [Kitty cackles] Make me a constitution saving throw.

ed: 18, baby!

Yubi: 18, okay!

ed: Hell yeah.

Kitty: All the flexing.

 

Yubi: Weirdly, the flexing is sort of helping you. It’s either that, or the flexing has alerted Findex to how little there is, and how much more he might actually need to be helping. But you’re keeping up okay, and after maybe about ten, fifteen minutes, you guys get within 20 foot of where Natalia is sitting reading her book. As both of you glance up to look at her, you both notice that she is reading her book. But it’s not so much the reading of the book that catches your attention, it’s the fact that her eyes have what look like golden letters running across the iris as she’s reading.

 

Kitty: Ooooh.

ed: Are they letters I recognise?

Yubi: Make me a perception check.

ed: Alright.

Gary: This would be some damn fine eyesight.

Kitty: From 20 feet away.

ed: I got a 17 on that one, so I am rocking the rolls.

Yubi: You’re doing very good today, actually. It looks like the language in the city that you can read, but it’s sort of mirrored and very small. Its just enough that you can recognise what script it is.

 

ed as Taro: Here, uh, Nat — there’s something not quite right about your old eyes.

Gary as Natalia: I mean, that’s rather rude, but, okay. What do you mean?

ed as Taro: I mean— Nerium, are you seeing this too? It’s not just me, right?

Kitty as Nerium: Well, that would depend on exactly what you’re seeing, Mr. Taro. What are you seeing?

ed as Taro: I might be seeing some glyphs.

Kitty as Nerium: Little gold letters running across her eyes?

ed as Taro: Yeah, yeah, okay. Good, good.

Gary as Natalia: Wait, what?!

Yubi: Natalia, the minute that you break your gaze from the book and you look down at them, those letters disappear. And her eyes are as normal again.

 

Kitty: Oh, okay. I’m going to say, 

Kitty as Nerium: Is it a good book?

Gary as Natalia: Oh it’s a thrilling story.

Kitty as Nerium: Yeah?

Gary as Natalia: Yeah. Do you have a mirror?

Kitty as Nerium: I do, actually, yeah. Give us a—

Gary as Natalia: Okay. If you—

Kitty as Nerium: Giddy up, Findus!

ed: “Findus”, jesus christ! [Gary and Kitty laugh]

Yubi: So, he absolutely needs to make a constitution saving throw.

ed: He’s a real horse of a lizardman.

 

[~ 5 minutes in]

 

Yubi: Okay. He gets to that platform, and instead of sitting, or standing normally, he just lies face down on the platform and he’s breathing very heavily and just taking a bit of a rest there for a moment. 

ed: Awww. Baby.

Yubi: He looks exhausted.

ed: Baby boy.

Kitty: With this roll for acrobatics, I just got a 20, so I spring lightly from his back and alight delicately on the platform beside Nat. [Gary laughs]

Yubi: Full of energy, full of joy and glee. Yeah.

Gary: I just lean down and whisper to him,

Gary as Natalia: Penance. [the cast wheeze-laughing]

Kitty: Oomph, fucking hell! Memo to me, don’t ever cross Gary.

ed: This is grim. This is just too cruel. Awful words. [Gary and Kitty laugh]

Yubi: He shoots you the most baleful look but he does not reply. He looks like he knows.

 

Kitty: I’m gonna dig my — the mirror, that comes with my thieves tools, it’s a little mirror on a stick, and I’m gonna pass that to Nat and say,

Kitty as Nerium: I think it only does it when you’re reading. 

Kitty: And can I look at the book and see that it’s got — what language it’s written in?

Yubi: Make me an intelligence check to try and work out the language, if you’re trying to work out what language it is.

Kitty: I mean, that would be that thing where you can’t tell the difference between Chinese and Japanese when you see it written down and it’s not your language, and given that I got a 6, I have no idea what that is.

Yubi: You’ve got no idea what that is. It doesn’t look like anything you’ve actually really seen before.

 

Gary: Wait, can you not tell—? Nevermind.

Kitty: If it’s the first time you’ve seen it… I’ve never seen Infernal written down before.

Gary: Oh true, okay. I can tell it’s not a normal language, it’s not Common, or is that—?

Yubi: Yeah, because you had that thing where you slowly gained the ability to read it fluently.

Gary: Okay, so I’m gonna read and start angling this mirror.

Yubi: It takes you a couple of tries to get the angle right, but you can see that as you’re reading the book, out of the corner of your eye, those same letters are reflected going across as quickly as you’re reading and mirrored.

 

Gary as Natalia: Okay, that’s a little strange. It’s quite cool, though.

ed as Taro: I mean, it could just be that your eyes just got really shiny.

Gary as Natalia: Yeah…

Kitty as Nerium: Didn’t you have a funny thing happen with your eyes before, when you were allergic to the makeup?

Gary as Natalia: I did. Maybe it’s magic, maybe—

ed as Taro: That’s some kind of allergy.

Kitty as Nerium: That’s a hell of an allergy, yeah.

ed as Taro: I think you should see a doctor about that. Ideally.

Kitty as Nerium: I don’t think it seems like it wants curing.

Gary as Natalia: Oh no, I quite like it, to be honest.

 

Kitty: Is Findex still lying there going… [pants exaggeratedly]

Yubi: [pants exaggeratedly] He’s absolutely lying there. But when you all look over to him, he pushes himself up onto his feet again. And you guys are about three quarters of the way up. And he looks at you, Nerium, and then he half bends down so you can climb back up.

Gary as Natalia: Ah, excellent. Chop chop.

Kitty: I am gonna tap Nat on the arm and say,

Kitty as Nerium: Nat, just a thought, we probably don’t want him dead. He needs to actually take us to the commander. So, I don’t suppose you fancy giving me a lift, do you?

Gary as Natalia: Ah… fine, come on.

Kitty: Eyy!

Gary as Natalia: Hop on.

 

Yubi: Make me a strength check, or athletics if that’s better.

Gary: I’m not proficient so they are the same. Ooh, that’s an 18!

Kitty: Nice.

Yubi: Nerium’s light, it’s no problem and you start again scaling the wall with the book in your dress and a halfling on your back.

Kitty: What does Findex think, seeing this?

Yubi: It’s kind of hard to judge emotions on the face of a big lizard that you’ve only known at this point for about half an hour to forty minutes, but it’s just bliss and relief.

ed: To me it feels like we’ve known him for like… three weeks, four weeks. [Gary and Kitty laugh]

Yubi: He is already part of our family to us, I know, but in canon, Findex is still a new…

ed: A new friend.

Yubi: So to speak.

 

Gary: As I’m scaling up, I say…

ed: Jesus christ Gary, jesus christ!

Gary: What? [Kitty laughs]

ed: You can’t help yourself, can you? [Yubi laughs] I’m mad.

Yubi: She beat you, she beat you to him!

ed: Taro also climbs the wall.

Yubi, while they and Kitty are still laughing: Roll me an athletics check.

ed: Okay, I’ll roll an athletics on just… oh, that’s my bad… No. 12. 12 athletics.

Yubi: Okay! That’s much better than last time.

ed: It was, yes.

 

Yubi, still laughing: As you— sorry, Natalia, you were gonna say something, though.

Gary: Yeah, I say,

Gary as Natalia: It’s been a while since I— [Kitty and Yubi laugh]

Kitty: Sorry.

ed: Are you alright over there? Are you okay? Are you good? You good over there?

Kitty, wheezing with laughter: I’m great. It’s fine.

 

[~10 minutes in]

 

Gary as Natalia: It’s been a while since I carried a woman on my back, but last time it proved very useful.

Kitty as Nerium: That sounds like an intriguing story, do you want to tell us a bit more?

Gary as Natalia: Oh, I was helping her escape from some bad people.

Kitty as Nerium: Ooh, that’s very noble of you, Nat.

Gary as Natalia: Well, I was getting paid a rather large sum of money.

Kitty as Nerium: Were you indeed? And what happened to her afterwards?

Gary as Natalia: Oh, she disappeared to the other side of the world and I never saw her again.

Kitty as Nerium: Oh… okay.

Gary as Natalia: I think she’s fine. I got paid.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Well, okay, I’m sure she’s fine. So, is that what you used to do for a living then, Nat?

Gary as Natalia: Oh, I do all sorts.

Kitty as Nerium: But, you know, rescuing damsels.

Gary as Natalia: Uh… If that is what is required.

Kitty as Nerium: What else is in your portfolio then? Things that you might be able to do if they were required?

 

ed: This is my favourite job interview. 

Kitty: No! I’m just curious! I’ve not met any of the—

ed: “What do you think you can bring to the party?”

Kitty: Fuck off, ed. [laughs]

Gary as Natalia: I’ve got quite a few transferable skills. [Kitty laughs]

Kitty: “Would you say you work well as part of a team? What’s your greatest failure?”

Gary as Natalia: “I’m typically more of an independent character.”

 

ed: Oh boy. Taro, by the way, is on his grind on this climb, he’s focused, he’s taking it seriously. He’s not fucking around having a chat. He’s on it. He’s up, he’s going.

Gary: Nat can have a chat because this is easy.

Yubi: Speaking of easy and not easy, Findex is a-struggling and he is starting to lag behind Taro as you climb.

ed: Taro doubles back to help.

Gary: Aww.

 

Yubi: Awww, okay. How are you helping?

ed: I don’t know, with… [groans] It’s hard isn’t it? I think he’s just there for moral support, I guess. 

Yubi, holding back laughter: What do you say for moral support?

Gary: [Findex noise]

ed: I think Taro just… [Yubi and ed laugh]

ed: I really didn’t think this through. How the hell do you help someone climb a slope? 

Gary: Sing to him.

ed: Oh, okay. Okay. So I think Taro sidles up and he’s like, 

ed as Taro: Well, look, come on. You can do this. The real cliff you have to face is the one inside yourself. [someone slow-clapping]

Yubi, laughing: Okay. He looks over to you at that. Are you using your inspiration for the first time?

ed: Hell yeah, let’s do it!

 

Yubi: Okay, he looks over to you. There is a movement of just complete confusion on his face before you feel again, that tug of magic and it’s very much like the one that you used in the abandoned house. That same warm, almost transference of magic. And he kind of smiles and he brightens up a little bit. And he nods, and he goes, 

Yubi as Findex: Thanks. That’s kind of motivational, actually.

Yubi: And he climbs two times— 

Kitty: Wheee!

Yubi: Not two times, two numbers better.

ed: Ah, yes. Two numbers.

Yubi: Two numbers, from a four to a six. He is now climbing a little bit more. A little bit better. After about I think another — for Nat another five minutes, for you and Findex probably another 15 to 20, you all get to the top of this building.

 

Gary: I’d just like to say: good work, Taro, giving a warm tug to the easy lizardman.

ed: Hey.

Yubi: Wow, wow.

Gary: That’s all I want. I’m not gonna do any more. I know we’re not a fan of the horn, apparently.

Kitty: I mean—

ed: This is a horn free zone, we’re all pure here. Thank you for tuning in. I will never fuck. I will never fuck. Never ever.

Yubi: Okay. Oh boy.

Kitty: Where were we? Where were we?

 

[Various noises and groans from the cast]

 

Yubi: Okay, you guys all make it to the top of this building. And you are in this second layer of this city, of the wedding cake, of the Minas Tirith kind of half dropped on the side wedding cake. Yes, you are on the layer above. And again, there seems to be this layer that goes on top of that. But you can see from the edges where sunlight is coming in. And again, there are more holes in what looks like the stone rock ceiling where other bits have crumbled in and fallen in. And you can see, in the distance, another building that slants up that you reckon is probably the one to climb to get to the next layer. The one thing that you do notice as you find your feet is that the slope on this one is much more gentle except for about maybe 400, 500 feet forward, where it breaks really sharply into this cliff edge and most of the building crumbled really sharply down into [mis-speaking] these next layer. [laughing and mocking self] Theese next layer. [all laugh loudly]

 

Yubi: That is all crumbled down into this next layer. And Findex stands up and he looks again, just utterly relieved to be not climbing. And he turns around, and you can see this part of the city behind you actually looks pretty intact. And he points and he goes,

Yubi as Findex: That’s where we’re heading, along there.

 

[~15 minutes in]

 

Kitty as Nerium: With the big hole.

Yubi as Findex: No, the other way.

Kitty: Oh, so the cliff doesn’t drop down, it goes up.

Yubi: No, the cliff drops down on one end of the layer. He’s leading you the other way. It’s an almost flat path. And he starts to lead you back towards this area that is pretty much intact. And as he does, he turns back to you and he says,

Yubi as Findex: This part here is where we’ve managed to secure. It’s one of the easier ones to get to. I’ve only been here three times. So it’s still, you know, I don’t know it very well.

Kitty as Nerium: Wait, you’re not going to get lost, are you?

Yubi as Findex: No, they showed me the map. I know where I’m going.

 

Kitty: Um, insight check?

Yubi: Yeah, absolutely, go for it.

Gary as Natalia: Very easy to get to.

Kitty: I rolled a one, but I’m a halfling, so it’s okay. Oh, 20! He best fucking know where he’s going.

Gary: Ooooh!

Yubi: He is telling the truth, like somebody who is 99.9% sure that he’s not going to get lost. But now the doubt is in his mind. And he’s kind of second guessing himself a little bit.

Kitty: Well, no, no, don’t fucking blame me.

ed: Wow, thanks. Thanks for that one. I think this one’s all on you. This is your doing.

 

Yubi: He turns to you, Natalia, and he says,

Yubi as Findex: I mean, in comparison to the rest of the city. This is the easiest path to get to here.

Gary as Natalia: I see.

ed as Taro: Well, I think you’ve— I believe in you, Findex. I think you’ve got this.

Yubi as Findex, surprised: Thank you. 

ed as Taro: Lead on.

Yubi as Findex: I appreciate it. There’s one place I know that has our store room. If you promise not to tell the commander, I’ll take you there real quick.

Kitty as Nerium: Oh, that would be very kind and very much appreciated, sir.

Yubi as Findex: I need a drink.

Kitty as Nerium: Don’t we all.

 

Yubi: He leads you right back towards a bit of the city that is destroyed, but still next to the big section that’s mostly intact, and he leads you into this building that looks like it’s been barricaded. So while most of the buildings look unintentionally destroyed, this one looks like it’s been built back up. There’s definite signs of rubble having been moved to barricade doors and windows. And he leads you around the back and into this room and you can see that there are indeed boxes and crates and jugs of what look like water or some sort of clear liquid stacked up along the sides, and clear signs of activity and movement. He goes right over and he picks up a jug that’s already been opened, clearly, and just starts downing whatever is inside.

 

ed: All right, Taro’s gonna get his chug on, let’s get some some drink – of something. I don’t know.

Kitty: Can I do an investigation check before I start drinking what might be vodka?

ed: I would like to note Taro does not do an investigation check. He goes for it.

Yubi: Okay, Taro goes for the bottle next to the one that Findex just picked up, cracks it open, and begins drinking. On your investigation check, was that a 20 or a 2? Nat 20! Nerium? It’s water.

Kitty: I’m pretty sure I know the stream this came from.

Yubi: Um, well… Well…

Kitty: Having never been to this place before. No, okay, fine.

ed: This is definitely how water works. Yeah.

Kitty: It’s delicious and refreshing.

 

Yubi: The minute that Findex opens the bottle, the lack of any smell of alcohol – a smell that you are very used to, especially in varying degrees of quality? – it’s definitely not alcoholic. It just seems to be water. But with your nat 20 investigation in this room, you can also see that these crates are clearly food crate things that have been bundled up. They’ve all been opened before, clearly, and then re-tied and re-kept.

Kitty: Is there anything that looks like it is preserved. Something that would make good trail rations?

Yubi: Yeah, it looks like the top box has been opened just a little bit and you can see that there’s maybe some sort of dried meat in there.

Kitty: Excellent. I would like to grab a bit of that, and to be honest, I will stuff it in my pocket because I don’t have a bag. But I would also like to see if there’s anything like, I don’t know, fruit.

Yubi: It all seems to be either things that don’t go off quickly, or contained like water in jugs.

Kitty: Okay, cool. Well, I will chow down on a chunk of jerky in between drinking an entire jug of water.

ed: Has Taro noticed this? 

Yubi: That it’s water? 

ed: No, Nerium stealing stuff.

Yubi: Yeah, it’s quite a small room, Nerium has just shoved her arm into a box and—

Kitty: I mean! He brought us here food!

 

Yubi: Yeah, you’re just chowing down. It does not taste like any jerky you’ve ever had before, but it’s very nice. 

Kitty: I’m sure it’s fine.

ed: It’s dick meat. [Yubi laughs] I don’t know what I’m doing. [sighs] Stop…

Gary: Another quality line from the cock doctor.

Yubi: The instant look of regret on your face, ed, as you said that. There was joy and then instant regret when it’s too late.

ed: It’s one of those things where like, the linearity of my thought process didn’t quite pan out, because I knew it was bad before I said it. I was like: you know what’ll be a funny thing to say, if I just say ‘It’s dick meat.’ And then I thought about it for a second. I was like, ‘That’s not funny at all. It’s not a funny gag. It’s not a funny joke.’ And I said it anyway.

Gary: That’s why they call it jerky.

Yubi: It’s you Gary. It’s you. You-…

 

[~20 minutes in]

 

Kitty: I would like to say at this point that I saw those footprints in the sand, and none of them were small people. So I’m not worried, I’m eating this shit. Whatever kind of meat it is, it’s not halfling.

ed: Oh, is that just it? Like, it doesn’t matter what it’s from, as long as it’s not halfing, you’re fucking good.

Kitty as Nerium: I’m. Hungry.

Yubi: Yeah, you watch as Taro starts drinking from those jugs. Nerium just starts shoving jerky in her mouth.

Kitty as Nerium: Excuse me, I’m a lady.

Yubi: Okay, elegantly shoving jerky in her mouth.

ed: Taro also starts shoving meat in his mouth.

Yubi: Right?

Gary: Natalia will also eat and drink.

 

Yubi: Okay, you guys take five minutes. You feel much, much better after eating and drinking. You were probably getting towards the edge of dehydrated. You feel kind of more tired at this point. The time that you’ve spent being awake is starting to catch up with you. And that threat of no longer being killed by the lizardman and not climbing a 400-whatever foot building – the adrenaline’s worn off to a degree. After a moment Findex screws the top back on the jugs that still have things in them, and awkwardly puts the lid back on and tries to make it look like no one’s gone into it, and nods his head and goes,

Yubi as Findex: Please, don’t tell the commander. Really not supposed to do that.

ed as Taro: No worries, pal. No worries.

Yubi as Findex: Thank you. It all has to go back to the Queen, so, it’s kind of stealing.

Kitty as Nerium: Oh, well, glad you made that clear beforehand.

Yubi: He gives you a slightly sheepish look, and then he leads you out of the building.

ed as Taro: Don’t worry, bub, we’ve all committed a few thefts here and there before, right?

Gary as Natalia: Mhmm.

Kitty: I’m saying nothing. Suddenly my shoes are really interesting.

Yubi: He glances back at you, and he goes, 

Yubi as Findex: I wouldn’t say that, if I were you. I’d keep that one to yourself. Maybe. Anyway, it’s sort of just this way.

 

Yubi:And then he takes you down an alleyway, does very clearly a U-turn towards the end of it, goes back down another alleyway. And you see this building that looks like it was once quite a fancy house, maybe. Again, it’s all been boarded up. This one you can see has a single light flickering in one of the far windows. He nods his head and he points and he goes,

 

Yubi as Findex: This is where the commander is. Follow me. Can I— can I have my sword back?

ed: Ehhhhmmm… I do want to give him his sword back. No. Taro wouldn’t give him his sword back. Taro keeps the sword.

Gary: Character development in seconds, from ed.

Yubi: He looks a little bit defeated, and he goes,

Yubi as Findex: If the commander asks, can you tell them that I gave you the sword?

ed: Is that less embarrassing?

Yubi as Findex: I don’t know.

Gary as Natalia: You’re asking us to lie a lot for you.

 

ed as Taro: I will say, what is your story here? Because either way, this looks a bit embarrassing, right?

Yubi as Findex: Ah, I found you, thought you were rebels, apprehended you, and have now brought you to see my commander for further processing..?

ed as Taro: So you apprehended us, right? But we all have weapons. And there are three of us. And you’ve done no kind of—

Kitty as Nerium: Yeah, but Taro. We have followed him, and we are all friends now. We understand that we’re all on the same side.

ed as Taro: Then why is there—? But yeah, it doesn’t look like he’s apprehended us, is what I’m saying.

Yubi as Findex: That’s why I wanted the sword back.

 

ed as Taro: It still doesn’t look like you’ve apprehended us, unless somehow everybody else gets less armed.

Gary as Natalia: Nope.

Kitty: I hold up my hands that are empty, because my daggers are in my pockets, and go,

Kitty as Nerium: Who’s armed?

Gary: I hold up my sword.

ed as Taro: But I will point out that at any time, any of us could have just run away, right? This story doesn’t hold up to any kind of scrutiny.

Yubi: He looks for a minute, completely lost. And then he nods and he goes,

 

Yubi as Findex: Okay, new plan. I met you— no, I’m not allowed to leave the city.

ed as Taro: Here’s the deal. What happened was, we got the jump on you.

Yubi as Findex: [Pained noise]

ed as Taro: And now we asked you to take us to your leader.

Yubi as Findex: [More pained noises]

ed as Taro: How’s that sound?

Yubi as Findex: I don’t have anything better but I think I’m going to be in big trouble.

Gary as Natalia: I’d go with that. That’s the most rational thing I think Taro’s ever said.

Yubi as Findex: He said a very nice motivational thing on the fifth gate, before.

ed: That’s right. Everybody should listen to me and believe everything I say. Now, let’s go in. Remember, you’re our prisoner. [Gary and Yubi laugh]

 

[~25 minutes in]

 

Yubi: Make me a persuasion roll, please.

ed: Why can’t I roll good ever? It’s a seven.

Yubi, laughing: A seven.

ed: Okay, so, so, so… [stuttering with anger] fucking, this dice, it always rolls…. I don’t know. I always roll bad on the things I have good points in, which I wanna do, right? Like I skilled my guy for doing talking and shit. Whenever I roll one of those rolls, I just get, like [putting on a weird voice] garbage numbers, like… none. [Yubi and Gary laugh] And then it’s like, “Oh, now let me climb a wall,” and it’s like, “Oh, okay, the tiny crap man climbs a wall, he gets 19.” I don’t know. I just…

Kitty: One day, ed, one day you will correctly identify a magical item. 

ed: It’s a mockery. I’m being mocked.

Yubi: I’ll send you another dice, ed, it’s fine.

 

Yubi: As you say that, Findex absolutely gives you a side eye, and he goes,

Yubi as Findex: Ehm, maybe we don’t say that one, in so many words.

ed as Taro: Here, Nat, could you tell Findex that he’s our prisoner?

Gary as Natalia: Findex. [Findex gargles in fear] Sweet little Findex. You’re our prisoner, right?

Yubi: He towers almost a foot over you and looks terrified.

Gary: I stroke his face.

Kitty: That’s such a power move, I love it.

ed: Will you stop doing that to people? It’s really uncomfortable.

Yubi: He gives a small tremble.

Gary: You’re our prisoner, right, aren’t you, Findex?

Yubi: Roll me intimidation.

Gary: 12.

Kitty: Fucking—.

Yubi: I think with the prior history the DC was probably a 10 for that one. So he nods and he goes,

 

Yubi as Findex: All right. Fine. I hope they don’t send me to the Blood Sands. Come on.

Kitty: To the what? The Blood Sands?

Yubi: He takes half a step into the building and then he pauses, and he looks back and he goes,

Yubi as Findex: You haven’t … you haven’t heard of even the Blood Sands?

Kitty as Nerium: No. Do you know what, I think actually before we go in there I’d quite like to know what the Blood Sands are.

Yubi as Findex: The Blood Sands are where the city’s finest warriors are forged. It’s a fighting arena of sorts. It’s a fight to the death. To join the Queen’s guard you have to pass a round in the Blood Sands, and I passed mine… barely.

Kitty as Nerium: Wow.

Kitty: I would like to very obviously look him up and down, and go,

Kitty as Nerium, patronisingly: Well done.

Yubi: As you look him up and down, he half turns and he pulls one of his shoulder pauldrons aside and you can see there is a really deep, thick scar that goes — it looks like it was really bad hit that almost maybe took off the arm — and he shows you and he goes,

Yubi as Findex: Barely.

Kitty: Well, goodness. Off we go, then.

 

ed: 50 GP: Blood in the Sand.

Yubi: He, uh — what? [laughing and trying to continue]

ed: Sorry, you don’t get my reference to the obscure — it’s not even obscure, right? But there was a 50 Cent game for the PS2 called… oh, it doesn’t matter, move on. Move on.

Kitty: That’s not obscure?

ed: Someone out there is — it’s not obscure. Everybody knows about it. It’s just an acknowledgement that the 50 Cent game “Blood in the Sand” exists.

Yubi: It’s a shout out.

Gary: I understand. You’re paying props to your boy 50 Cent. [Yubi and Kitty laugh]

ed: Why is that something to laugh about? Why is that a point of humour for you? There’s nothing funny here.

Yubi: Oh, god. Okay. Whoo.

 

Yubi: He leads you into this very beautiful house that is really intact, actually. Although all the furniture seems to be cleared out as he leads you through this hallway and then takes a right into this corridor that leads towards what is clearly a room with an open door at the end. There’s candlelight coming from it, although you can’t quite see in – although all of you can hear that there are at least two people talking in that room.

ed:  Ooh, have we got a picture to look at?

Yubi: You’ve got a whole picture!

ed: Oh, boyo.

Yubi: I will concede that right now that picture is very confusing.

ed: You’re right, it is! [Gary laughs]

Yubi: I’m going to very quickly explain it for you. Nerium, you are the—

Yubi and Kitty: Green one.

Yubi: Taro, you are the purple one, and Nat, you are the red one, and the beige dragon is Findex.

Kitty: Ooh, Taro, I like your frock.

ed: It’s good, isn’t it?

 

Yubi: I just … I went for color rather than accuracy. As you guys approach the room, you can hear two people talking and as Findex steps in and opens the door wider so you can see, all three of you see a humanoid creature with its back to you that looks maybe human, or maybe elven; another one of the lizard creatures that Findex is; and then, kneeling on the floor, bound, is another lizard creature that looks in a really, really bad state.

Kitty: Is that the dead polar bear? [everyone laughing]

Yubi, laughing: That is the dead polar bear.

Kitty: Okay, just clarifying that.

ed: Oh, man.

Yubi: Listen, I put this one together when I had the flu, okay.

Kitty: Two weeks ago. But it doesn’t need changing.

Yubi: Nope.

Gary: Can we screenshot this and post it to the Tumblr?

Yubi: I will post it to the Twitter and the Tumblr of my very good attempt at making a map on this one.

ed: You can do it whenever because there’s no spoilers, because it’s fucking incomprehensible. [Yubi and Kitty laugh]

Yubi: I’m gonna post it with that quote.

 

[~30 minutes in]

 

ed: Okay, so we’re here in the cave. Okay. And we’re just about to—

Kitty: No, it’s a candlelit room. [Yubi laughing]

ed: Okay, yep.

Gary: Findex is in there. Door’s open.

Yubi: Door’s open. A tall humanoid figure – maybe elven, maybe human – with its back to you, very fancy leather armor, a flowing cape or cloak. You can see two swords strapped to either side. And another of the lizard-like creatures – this one darker orange, and in much better leather armor, holding a spear – and then the one that is bound and kneeling doesn’t have any armor or anything particularly, and is looking pretty beaten up. And as you step in, Findex kind of awkwardly knocks on the door and goes,

 

Yubi as Findex: Commander, I returned with people.

ed as Taro, stage-whispering: Nat, Nat!

Gary as Natalia: Greetings, assholes.

Kitty: [pained] Oooooh.

ed: Shit.

Yubi: Do you say that?

Kitty: I would like to use my action to attempt to hide behind Taro.

Yubi: Okay.

Gary as Natalia: Now, are any of the rest of you going to try and stab us in the back with no warning?

Yubi: Make me a stealth check, Nerium? Oh no, you can just mechanically hide behind someone, right?

Kitty: I can attempt to hide. It says attempt.

Yubi: Yeah, make me a stealth check.

Kitty: 12.

Yubi: You duck behind Natalia, and get out of the way. Findex freezes, and you can see everything in him go,

Yubi as Findex: Oh boy.

Yubi: And the humanoid figure slowly turns around. And indeed, it is a half elf with this long red plait of hair. And he turns and he looks at the both of you and slowly looks over to Findex and you can see him taking in the wounds on his face, and the fact that one of you is holding his sword. And he very slowly draws both of his swords.

 

[The drums start up to signal the intermission music at 32 minutes in]

 

Yubi: Hi, everyone – it’s me, Yubi, your sweet, sweet DM. Welcome to the show— or, halfway through the show. The first thing I want to talk about this week is our winner of our giveaway. The rules were to complete a piece of media that could be anything (and let us know that you’ve done it) about The Mortal Path. And our winner is [drumroll noises] Krondarling on Tumblr who made three [TW for non-explicit blood image] incredible playlists. Just such good music for all three of them. I found some of my new favorite songs. I think they fit amazingly. Just was so awesome. Well done. And thank you so, so much. We had so many amazing entries. It was really hard to pick just one for the winner. Please get in contact with us, we’ll pass you on to Settling Geek, our amazing amazing people who gave us — donated — a set of dice for this giveaway. Thank you again so much for that, you have to go and check out their wares on Twitter, s-e-t-t-l-i-n-g-g-e-e-k. It’s not just dice stuff they have, they have all sorts of awesome, awesome stuff. We are going to be showcasing each entry on our Twitter, regardless as to whether or not they were the winning entries or not, to show everyone the awesome stuff that people did for us, seeing as we received most of our entries on Tumblr.

 

I’d also like to say thank you to Dice Bard who sponsored our first giveaway with an awesome set of dice — again, you’ve got to go check out their stuff. They leave you really funny little rhymes and poems. It’s just so much fun to like, interact with them. They are awesome.

 

I’d also like to say thank you, of course to Rachel Graff, our composer who wrote the theme song, and who also wrote the track that plays in the Fallen City. If you like that track, you can also buy it. Rachel released an album called Sketching the Rain on her Bandcamp. You can find it if you Google rachelgraff.com. That’s her website, there are links to her Bandcamp, you can pay as much or as little as you like. She just married her wife and they’re going on their honeymoon so any extra cash would really really help them out. I would so recommend getting it, the whole album is just amazing, and so full of inspiration for settings. I actually conjured the Fallen City while listening to “Shuttle,” which is the track in the Sketching the Rain album that is used.

 

You can also just tweet at us if you use the hashtag #TheMortalPath (all one word). We always check, we love to hear from people. If you enjoyed something in the episode, if something made you laugh, anything, we’d love to hear from you. Let us know, we are so happy to talk back to you. We all have individual Twitters as well – you can find all of us on our main Twitter @TheMortalPath. Yeah, we just love to hear from you.

 

[~35 minutes in]

 

You can also message us on Tumblr, you can tag us – make sure you @ us so we can see, you know, that you’re talking to us, we can see what you guys are saying. Because like I said, we’d love to hear from you. It really brightens our day to know that you guys are enjoying it. And it really also helps to know what you guys are enjoying. You know, like, it’s really fun.

 

If you have a moment and you feel like it, we’d also be so grateful for any iTunes reviews. iTunes really calibrates based on numbers. So it would really help us out if you could pop over, give us a five star rating, leave us a little comment, we read all of them, we absolutely love them. We’re going to start picking names also from the Twitter feeds. If you tweet about us, under the hashtag #TheMortalPath, we might use your name in the show. Again, just no promises that it’s A) going to be used, or that B) it’s going to be used correctly, because my players… are my players. Sooooo… But, you’re in with a chance, it would be really fun to be immortalized as an NPC. We would really appreciate just any iTunes reviews, like I said, it really helps us find new listeners. I’m gonna let you guys get back to the show. That’s all from me this week, thank you very much. I love you all. Goodbye. Kind of. You’re going to hear me again in a second.

 

[the intermission music signals the end of the intermission – the standard upbeat drums underneath the techno-y panflute. Under the dialogue, the same track from before plays, with the unsettling and quiet, dissonant plucked notes and the rustling wind]

 

Gary as Natalia: Now, now. Simmer down. This will go a lot easier if you just explain the situation, and we don’t have to kill one of you.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh – they have a masculine and clear, pointed voice with received pronunciation to sound self-confident and a bit condescending: I rather think it’s you who should explain what you’re doing here. Are you from— Findex? Did you bring them from down below?

Yubi, after a moment of silence: Findex just is frozen, and he just kind of like… I forgot I was Findex. [Everyone laughs, someone claps]

Kitty: That’s beautiful.

Yubi: Ah, group scenes!

ed: Very good. That’s excellent, well done.

Kitty: So immersive, I love it.

ed: You were just stood there and I was like, “Oh, is this us, now?”

Gary: [deep voice] “I’m Findex.”

ed: No, I’m Findex.

Kitty: I’m Findex!

Yubi in Findex’s voice, indignantly: No, I’m Findex.

 

Yubi: Right, Findex glances over to you guys. And he goes,

Yubi as Findex: I came across them on the ground level, on level four. And they captured me. I don’t know where they’re from, they said that they just appeared here.

Yubi: And the other one steps forward and holds out her spear at you.

Gary as Natalia: You’re all very aggressive people. Honestly.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: This is a dangerous city, and you’ve just appeared holding one of my men captive.

Kitty: I’ll just stick my head out from behind Nat and go,

Kitty as Nerium in a high-pitched voice: You can have him back!

Gary as Natalia: Yes, please.

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Oh, there are three of you. Are you a family of some sort?

Yubi: He’s trying to peer around to look at the very small person that just appeared.

Gary as Natalia: We are a travelling trio who have been somewhat displaced by unknown means.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Right. And are you telling me that you are not from this city?

Gary as Natalia: No, we are not from this city.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Are you from Tenbren?

Gary as Natalia: No. What is Tenbren?

Yubi: He looks over to Findex again, and Findex gives this little shrug, like,

Yubi as Findex: I’ve been dealing with this all day.

Yubi: And then he looks back at you and he goes,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Tenbren, the only city around?

Gary as Natalia: Nope, never heard of it.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: How did you get here, exactly?

Gary as Natalia: Magic. Don’t really know. Was at a party, and then suddenly some weird ice dragon roared, I think. And we woke up here.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Ooh, is that how it happened to you? That’s really interesting— I didn’t bother to ask. There was a dragon and it roared at you?

Gary as Natalia: Oh yes, it did. It was very strange.

Kitty as Nerium: Oh. I wonder if that was the trigger for you. Mine was really horrible. I’ll tell you about it later.

Gary as Natalia: Oh, please do.

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Findex. Did you find them in the city?

Yubi as Findex: Yes.

Yubi: He gives a slow nod and he takes a half-step back. You can see that the lizard creature on the floor is looking equally perturbed by this whole thing, and the one holding the spear is is looking slightly more agitated. And the commander nods his head and he goes,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Well, that’s very interesting. Why don’t you come in, and perhaps we better all put away our weapons and have a chat.

 

ed as Taro in a broad, fake American (vaguely Texan) accent: Well, I ain’t gonna put away my weapon. [Gary and Kitty laugh, someone clapping]

Kitty: There it is!

Yubi: Oh, glory days. Oh, glory days! This is very good. We’ve got some very good voices.

Kitty: This bus is a covered wagon.

Gary: I do a double take.

Yubi: Okay, okay. No, that’s a nat one. He is not looking at that.

ed: Man, I’m glad. My cover remains good.

Yubi: He slowly nods his head and he goes,

 

[~40 minutes in]

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I understand that you might be feeling a little… on edge. I think we all are right now. You clearly have bested one of my men. [As an aside] We will talk about that later.

Kitty: I want to know what Findex looks like at the point where Taro opens his mouth and starts channeling John Wayne.

Yubi: Findex is staring at Taro with slightly open-mouthed shock, I think with that roll, and is not doing a good job. But the minute that the commander mentions that, he snaps back to attention and goes back to looking vaguely terrified. And the commander gestures to the side of the room – and you can see some of the furniture has been stacked up in that corner, and there are a couple of chairs placed about, and he says,

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Why don’t you have a seat and we can talk about this? I’m certainly very curious.

Gary as Natalia: Very well, let’s all have a nice little chat.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I think we’re about done with this one, don’t you think?

Yubi: And he turns to the—

ed: The lizard wizard.

Yubi: The wizard lizard. So, he turns to the other lizard who’s holding the spear, she gives a nod. And then with incredible speed, she turns and she brings the spear down right through the one who is kneeling against the wall. And that one just kind of goes [gargling noise] and slowly collapses and is definitely no longer alive on the floor.

Kitty: Ohhh dear.

Gary: Huh.

ed: Damn.

Yubi: And then she takes a step back and kind of puts the spear at ease, but she’s not let go of it totally.

Kitty: Can I put my right hand in my pocket so that it’s on the handle of my dagger?

Yubi: Yes.

 

Gary as Natalia: What are you doing here?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: We are here under Queen Euseevius’s orders to wipe out the rebel factions. What are you doing here? This is good. Let’s trade questions for questions. Clearly you have many, and so do I.

Yubo: He takes a seat and he puts his swords away but he’s still very much has his hands ready to draw. And then he gestures for you to sit. Findex goes half to sit and then he shoots him the dirtiest and sharpest look and Findex immediately stops and goes back to stand near the other lizard, vaguely at attention.

Kitty, quietly: Oh, Findex.

Gary: I’ll sheathe my sword and sit opposite him.

Kitty: I’d like to sit as close to Nat as possible.

 

ed: I think Taro is going to stand to one side with his sword out, kind of looking… cool. [Everyone laughs]

Yubi: Okay, are you standing on the same side as Findex and the other lizard creature?

ed: I want to be on the other side of Nat, but a bit behind. I’m relaxed, but ready.

Yubi: Okay, you’re trying to give off a relaxed, but ready vibe.

ed: Yeah, yeah.

Yubi: Make a performance check. [Gary laughs]

ed: All right. I’m not a superstitious person, but I will use my other d20. 17.

Yubi: Oh! See? Okay. Taro leans against the wall and looks both relaxed and ready.

Gary: Would you say he’s three hunna like the Romans?

Yubi: Yes, Taro is three hunna like the Romans.

ed: Can we—?

Kitty: Oh, is that a 50 Cent reference?

ed: No, it’s not 50 Cent!

Gary: He’s Cool, Calm and Collected.

Kitty: I’m lost.

ed: Oh my god.

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: What are you doing here?

Gary as Natalia: Well, at present we are just trying to survive, figure out what’s going on, and hopefully return back home.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: And where would that be?

Gary as Natalia: I believe it’s my turn. These rebels. I take it that was one of them and you’re rooting them out of the city. What’s their agenda?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: As far as we understand it, they have not taken kindly to the queen’s ruling and would like to see things return to before she took power. Of course, that will never happen. And it is our job to make sure that it doesn’t. Where are you from? If not from here, or Tenbren?

Gary as Natalia: I am from Sindarian.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I’ve never heard of that.

Kitty as Nerium: Well that makes us even, because we’ve never heard of Tenbren.

 

Gary as Natalia: We are from Alfallen.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I’ve never heard of that, either.

Gary as Natalia: Hmm.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Is it a city?

Gary as Natalia: It’s a planet.

Kitty as Nerium: It’s a whole world.

Yubi: He draws back a little bit at that. Make me persuasion roles with advantage. You can all do it, and then I’ll—

ed: Do I have to, given I’ve said nothing?

Yubi: No, actually, ed you don’t get to join in.

ed: I persuade with my body.

Gary: 21.

Kitty: 22.

 

Yubi: He pulls back a little bit and he has this look of disbelief that quite quickly goes into something almost approaching glee. And as you say that, Findex takes a little half step forward and goes,

Yubi as Findex: They are— they are magic, sir, all of them.

Yubi: And he looks over and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Quiet. I was not speaking to you.

Yubi: And then he looks back with renewed interest. And he goes,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Magic, all of you, is that so?

ed as American Taro: Well, there might be a little bit of magic in these here hands. [Gary laughs]

Yubi: [Muffled] It’s so good. Oh, it’s so good.

 

[~45 minutes in]

 

Yubi: He looks he looks over to you and he goes,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Well, that is fascinating. I would very much enjoy a non-threatening demonstration.

Gary as Natalia: In a minute. You mentioned that the rebels aren’t happy with the queen’s rulings. What do you mean by that?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Well, they’d like it to go back to the old ways. But Queen Euseevius was forged in the Blood Sands herself, and really, I couldn’t think of a better ruler for the city, even before she became queen.

Gary as Natalia: Could you elaborate? That’s very vague. [ed laughs]

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I suppose if you’re not from here, it would be. Queen Eusevius started out as a fighter in the Blood Sands — it’s what we call our… arena, of sorts. She climbed her way up through the ranks, married the Crown Prince. And then when the king died, of course, they were in power. Unfortunately, our dear king…

ed: It’s King Choxxus Boxxus Joxxus Coxxus… Doxxus! [Kitty laughs]

Yubi: No it’s not.

ed: Do not dox us. [Gary laughs] I may have said that – it was not an instruction.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Unfortunately, Crown Prince Koviak, after he became king, there was a report of something in the Firemouth and well, the queen and him went to go and see what was happening. And he didn’t return. Very sad, but well… it is what it is.

Kitty as Nerium: You don’t sound very sad.

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh, not addressing that: I believe it’s my turn. How did you find yourselves in this city? And how exactly did you best one of my guards?

Gary as Natalia: We appeared next to the mechanical… boombox. [Kitty snorting with laughter] Um… it’s a bit further out. It was making announcements.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Further out from the Fallen City?

Gary as Natalia: Yes. And then we walked over here, because we sought to find shelter.

Yubi: He reaches into his cloak and pulls out a couple of sheets of paper. And as he’s turning them over, you can see that they are maps. And he pulls one out. And he’s looking at it and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Roughly how long did it take you to get to the Fallen City?

Gary as Natalia: You know, I didn’t listen to that episode this week. I couldn’t be certain.

ed as American Taro: I can’t say I was keeping track.

Kitty as Nerium: It took about an hour.

 

Yubi: He looks up at you. And he puts his finger somewhere on the map, and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: You saw the Firemouth? The volcano, the mountain?

ed as American Taro: Well, it’d be hard to miss.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: And it was— was it on your right or on your left as you approach the city?

Gary as Natalia: It was on the left.

Yubi: He again puts his finger back on the map. And he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: So, you appeared in the middle of the stretch? I haven’t heard of anything electronic out there. I’ve traversed it many times. It’s the main route from here back to Tenbren.

Kitty as Nerium: It apologised for any inconvenience.

Gary as Natalia: Mhmm.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: That was polite of it.

Kitty as Nerium: Well, I mean, it’s probably about the nicest thing that’s happened to us in the last 24 hours. So yeah.

 

Gary as Natalia: Yes. In response to the other part of your question, and politeness. Your chap here, Windex or whatever his name is, attacked my friend. Stabbed her in the back.

Kitty: Yeah! Yeah, I’d like to turn around and I’ll show where there’s a big bleeding wound that’s not remotely healed, and is still actually quite painful.

Gary as Natalia: And to be honest, we took a bit of umbrage to that and put him in his place.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Clearly. I can see that. You said you had magic at your disposal. I would still be very interested to see that.

ed as American Taro: Well, you best hope you don’t have to.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: You couldn’t give me just a little demonstration? So I know that it’s not just rumors?

Kitty as Nerium: You don’t believe your own guard, then?

Yubi: He looks over at Findex and he looks back at you and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Maybe it’s time for him to find another job. If he can’t stand up to three people appearing in the middle of the city.

Gary as Natalia: [Sighs] Fine.

 

Gary: I click my fingers and a horse appears. A small horse.

Yubi: A small horse.

Kitty: A five foot cubed horse.

ed: A small horse. A little baby horse.

Yubi: A little horse appears – and him and the lizard creature that is standing in the corner of the room both push backwards in surprise. And he nods his head and he goes,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: And you all have this gift?

ed as American Taro: Yes [it sounds more like yay-us in his thick pretend American accent]

Yubi: Make me a deception check, please.

Gary: [laughs, immitating ed] Yayus. [Everybody imitating ed]

ed in a more pronounced, jokey bad Texan accent: Well, come on down to my discount car sales… warehouse. We’ve got all your Cadillacs… and… [accent migrates] combine harvesters? [Everybody cackles, ed coughing with laughter]

 

ed: I’m rolling a deception check with my fucking adult brain which I have grown over twenty years of life. More than twenty. I had a brain when I was a baby too. [Everybody is losing it] Time to roll deception! Okay! [ed groans] I rolled an eight. Ha ha!

Kitty: Do you not have a deception modifier, though?

 

[~50 minutes in]

 

ed: Yeah, it’s five.

Kitty: Oh, Jesus, okay. Our bard is so charismatic, you guys.

Gary: He’s a character.

ed: Here’s the thing, right, I actually am. I actually am VERY charismatic because I put all my points into charisma. Apparently, my hands have like no points for rolling these… off-spheres.

Yubi: [Laughing, sounding close to tears] Oh my god, okay.

ed: Let’s continue with the game that we’re here to play. I’m sorry, I might have hit levels there because I got agitated.

Yubi: It’s okay.

ed: There might be some light clipping.

 

Yubi: I can fix any sound issues, as long as I get to keep the words said. So, he narrows his eyes at you, and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I would prefer a demonstration from all of you if possible. Although, that was very impressive.

Gary as Natalia: Come on, Nerium.

Gary: And I make my horse disappear.

Kitty: I look at Nat, and then I hold out my right hand and I go [clicks fingers] click my fingers, exactly like Nat did.

Gary: A goat appears.

 

Yubi: Make me a sleight of hand check to see if you can cast without him noticing that you are casting it.

ed: That’s some sneaky shit.

Gary: Ah, that’s a 23.

Kitty: Wow, fuck!

ed: Oh, well, owned.

Kitty: I was so hoping someone would do that. Thank you, so much.

Yubi: Very good. He looks again suitably impressed. And he turns his eyes to you, Taro.

Kitty: Can I just look longingly at that goat? Because I want to be able to do that.

Yubi: Yeah.

Kitty: Not longingly at the goat in any kind of… [Kitty stutters, everybody laughs] Oh, Jesus.

Yubi: Wait, I’m going to see if he notices you looking longingly at the goat. No, it’s a nine.

Kitty: Nein.

 

ed: So… the dead body thing is still in the room, right?

Gary, laughing: Oh no.

Yubi: Yes.

ed: I’m gonna cast that spell I cast before by accident. But on purpose.

Yubi: Okay. Alrighty.

Gary: Which one? You’ve cast a lot of spells by accident.

ed: Oh, yeah, you’re right. The one which I accidentally cast to lift up the cloak? 

Kitty, gasping: Beautiful. [quickly claps]

ed: I believe it’s known as Unseen Servant.

Yubi: Actually, you still have that with you. That little dude’s been following you for the last hour. He’s still there.

ed: For real?

Yubi: Yep. You just haven’t asked him to do anything, so he’s just invisibly following you.

 

ed: I’m gonna make him pick up the body and make it float towards our big buddy, the new guy. The commander.

Yubi: You turn your concentration back to this almost extension of magic that you remember is still there. You go, “Oh, yeah, that thing is still kind of… here, somewhere.” And you think about it really hard… and nothing happens.

ed: Well, I think Taro turns to face the commander, and he says,

ed as American Taro: Well, how about we pick up your friend over there?

ed: And points to the body.

Yubi: Okay. He looks at you, and he looks over at the body of the lizard creature on the floor, as one of its arms suddenly gets hoisted up and then the other one gets hoisted up in the air. And then it rises in this really horrifically off-putting way until it’s floating in a “U” shape, as if someone’s carrying it, and then it starts to really slowly, jerkily make its way towards you with all of its limbs flopping as it does. And the commander stands up and he reaches for his weapon and the lizard creature with the spear immediately gets ready again. And he goes,

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh, nervously: Ha, I think that’s probably a fine demonstration enough.

ed as American Taro: And drop.

Yubi: It hits the ground and sprawls.

ed as American Taro: Well, I trust you don’t need any more demonstration than that?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: No, I think that’s fine. You’ve certainly all proven yourselves. I have a couple more questions. Namely, well, your names? Who are you?

Kitty as Nerium: Hang on, isn’t our turn again, then?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Yes, I believe so.

Kitty: Nat, Nat, what do we ask him next?

Gary: [Laughs] I’m thinking about that.

 

Kitty: I’m really worried that he looked gleeful on discovering that we might be from another planet. Gleeful is not on my list of good responses to that.

Gary as Natalia: Talk to me about this city. Your man there mentioned it fell out of the sky, and there are creatures underneath. Do those creatures seem like us? Did they come from Alfallen?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: This is a difficult question. Not many have the authority to go below the city. I’ve been a couple of times.

Yubi: He glances over towards Findex and the other lizard creature, and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Of course, nothing is to leave this room.

Yubi: And they both nod and he turns back to you and he says,

 

[~55 minutes in]

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: We tell people that there are creatures beneath the city. That’s not strictly true. There are things beneath the city that are dangerous— creatures is not always the right word. We don’t have reports that are consistent of what they are or what they might be. People report different things in different places. This is part of why Queen Euseevius has tasked us with keeping it under lockdown. And also part and parcel why the rebel forces feel this is such a good place to hide. Not many people come here. It is forbidden, after all.

Kitty as Nerium: Ahhh, are they demons? Are they devils?

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I believe it’s my turn. Your names?

Kitty as Nerium: Merry Burrows.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Merry Burrows.

Gary as Natalia: They call him… The Puppet Master.

ed, indignantly: Can you not? [Everybody laughs] I have to go along with that now, don’t I?

Kitty: Yes, and.

Yubi: He looks over and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: A fitting nickname, for sure. I assume you weren’t born The Puppet Master.

ed as American Taro: The name’s… Tarohassee. [Gary laughs, bangs table]

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Taro Hassee. I see. And you are?

Gary as Natalia: They call me Natalia.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Natalia? Is that all?

Gary as Natalia: All you need to know.

Yubi: He kind of gives a little look, like, “fair enough, okay.”

 

ed: Sorry, did you think Tarohassee was two words?

Yubi: Yes.

ed: Wow, okay.

Kitty: I didn’t.

Yubi: Well, he has assumed that it is Taro *space* Hassee.

ed: That’s on him. Incompetent.

Yubi: [Laughs] Okay.

 

Yubi: He turns back to you. I’m just gonna call you Nerium. But they’ll call you Merry in character if we’re lucky. 

ed: God, It’s really hard having a character that has like two names.

Yubi: Yeah, it’s really hard doing that. Also multiple voices in an episode, that’s also hard. So he turns to you. And he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Some have reported what they might call demons, or devils. Although we haven’t, as I said, had any reports that really correlate with each other. We do know that there are things beneath the city – we’ve managed to recover certain maps and information. We can’t read the language, although we’ve been working towards deciphering parts. We’ve managed to locate and secure some very wonderful things from the city. Although there are areas of great danger as well.

 

Gary as Natalia: I think we may be able to continue this give and take a bit further. If I could help decipher this unknown tongue, would I… would we be able to convince you to part with one or two of these wonderful items?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: The items unfortunately are all under the command of Queen Euseevius. Any treasure we find here must be immediately taken to her. However, I was already planning on taking you to my captain, and he reports directly to the queen. Your story to me seems incredible, but stranger things have happened in the Fallen City for sure — I’ve seen a few myself. If you were wanting to aid us in our securing of the Fallen City and our hunt for treasure, you mentioned that you wanted to go back home, is that correct?

Kitty as Nerium: Yes.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: To… what was your planet called?

Kitty as Nerium: Alfallen.

 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Alfallen, that’s it. There is a wizard and advisor to the queen, the single most powerful person I have ever had the fortune of meeting. He’s due back in a couple of months. He doesn’t generally take audiences with anyone other than the queen, but if you were to have something to convince him that his time is worth being spent on you, you might be able to open a dialogue. If anyone can send you to another planet, it’s probably him.

Kitty as Nerium: If we’re still on this one by the time he comes back.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Do you have ways of leaving?

Kitty as Nerium: Umm…

Gary as Natalia: We didn’t come here by choice.

Kitty as Nerium: Yes.

Gary as Natalia: But if this wonderful chap can take us back, that would be very good.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: It’s only a hunch I have… as I said, I only met him once when I recovered an item from beneath the city. But if anyone can, it would be him. And I think finding three very powerful magic persons who have appeared in the city is certainly… Well, it’ll have put us in good standing to have brought you back safe and sound. To a degree. My apologies for my soldier’s earlier recklessness, he probably mistook you for rebels.

 

Kitty as Nerium: On the subject of being safe and sound. Since we now appear to have come to somewhat of an accord, we’ve actually had quite a hard day. Is there any chance that we might be able to rest up before we continue further… um, talking?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: I would not recommend resting up in the Fallen City.

Kitty as Nerium: [On the verge of tears] I don’t care where I go. I’m so tired.

Yubi: He gives a little laugh, but there’s this little calculating look in his eye when you say that as he as he looks at you.

 

[~60 minutes in]

 

Kitty: Shit, sorry, guys.

Yubi: He turns to the other lizard with the spear, and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Sevren? What time is it?

Yubi: She looks around and then she goes,

Yubi as Sevren: About eight.

Yubi: He nods, and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Well, we are due back at Tenbren. Please, won’t you come with us? I will take you as guests to my captain. There you will be given anything you need. We do have to cross the stretch, if you are able, although you will have us with you for your protection, of course. 

Gary as Natalia: Why would we need protection?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: It’s a dangerous journey between the Fallen City and Tenbren.

Gary as Natalia: What exactly is the danger?

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Mostly snakes.

 

Kitty: I mean… I’m going to look around the room, at the other inhabitants of the room, [Gary and ed laugh] and then I’m going to say god damn nothing.

Gary as Natalia: Let me… let us confer privately. Just one minute.

Gary: And I want to usher everyone out.

Yubi: Taro and Nerium?

Gary: Yeah.

Yubi: Okay. As you stand up, he stands up as well, and he goes, 

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Quite understandable. I have some things to talk about too, to my men.

Yubi: And he turns straight to Findex.

 

ed as American Taro: Hold on a minute.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Yes? 

ed as American Taro: We might have ended up in a small predicament, your lady. 

ed: He says, pointing, nodding towards Nat.

ed as American Taro: We’ve lost most of our combat force on the trip over here. Might we ask, what’s going to happen to your man Findex over here?

Gary as Natalia: Mhmm.

ed: That was to… Commando Rex.

 

Yubi: [Gary laughs] Not his name, at all.

ed: [Laughs] I… didn’t know at all what his name was.

Kitty: Commando Rex, though… I like that.

Gary: That’s a better name.

Yubi: I’ve got a very good name! [Mimes crying] Please let me use my names, that I wrote specially!

 

Yubi: He gives you a small smile, and he puts his hand on Findex’s shoulder, and he smiles and he says,

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Well, whatever doesn’t kill you in the Blood Sands only makes you stronger. Isn’t that right?

Kitty: Ooh. Oooh, sorry!

ed as American Taro: Well, perhaps I might propose that if we’re maybe helping you with some of your translation work, we might be taking him along as a bodyguard.

Yubi as Commander Gehesh: Oh, Findex will be returning to the city with us. We wouldn’t leave him here in the Fallen City. But, well – once there, it’s probably time for another round of training. Don’t you think, Findex?

Yubi: Findex does not say anything. He just looks terrified.

ed as American Taro: Well, we’ll see. Now, come along, my lady, we’ve got things to discuss.

 

Yubi: You guys head out the room. There are several rooms in this house. Do you guys just go to the other end of the building and go in a room?

Gary: Yeah.

Yubi: Okay.

Kitty as Nerium: Well, we’re proper fucked now, aren’t we?

ed as Taro: Are we?

ed: Can I just check that we’ve got a closed door, or something. So I can use my—

Yubi: Yeah, you close the door, and you speak quietly.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Well, we’re not even on Alfallen. We don’t know where we are. Personal theory, I think we’re in hell. I don’t know how we get back from here. We’re surrounded by six foot tall lizard people, and apparently there are dangerous things under the city.

Gary as Natalia: Well, I’m not sure that… hm. I’d rather like to explore under the city, maybe find something. They mentioned magical items that could possibly take us back or explain. I don’t particularly want to march into the lizard’s den.

ed as Taro: I have to say it seems like we might be in some danger of getting enraptured with the politics of this place. And maybe that wouldn’t be the worst thing in the world.

Kitty as Nerium: I mean, we don’t know how long we’re going to even be here. There is every possibility that we’re going to get zapped out in the next two days.

ed as Taro: But there’s also every possibility that we’re going to be here for the rest of our lives.

Kitty as Nerium: Oh, god.

ed as Taro: And hopefully, that’ll be longer rather than sooner.

 

Kitty as Nerium: I actually-… On the basis that I-… Well, things can’t really get that much worse.

Gary as Natalia: Don’t say that!

Kitty as Nerium: Hold on, Nat.

Kitty as Nerium: In terms of what we have with us, and what’s relying on us. And you know, we’ve got no way of saving ourselves. So, I don’t see any problem with plunging deeper under the city and finding something. You know, we can take risks now.

ed as Taro: [Bewildered] What? Sorry, what? Risks? What?

Kitty as Nerium: Well… [Gary laughs]

ed as Taro: Where did you come from? Are you? Has somebody infiltrated our—? Nerium,

Kitty as Nerium: Yeah? Merry, Merry.

ed as Taro: Oh, Merry, Merry. How did we meet?

Kitty as Nerium: Well, you did a little thunderwave, and knocked Nat out.

ed as Taro: Alright, that seems alright. Just a bit worried there, you didn’t seem yourself.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Look, I know, I’m not… The thing is, there’s no reason not to at the moment.

ed as Taro: What, other than the whole dying thing?

Kitty as Nerium: Well, I don’t actually trust these people, and this queen, and the Blood Sands, and the rest of it to keep us alive anyway.

Gary as Natalia: They don’t sound like nice people.

Kitty as Nerium: Exactly, they do not.

 

[~65 minutes in]

 

Gary as Natalia: We might be able to use our abilities to secure ourselves some position here, or at least bargain. But I think it’s a big risk. And I know exploring under the city is probably also a big risk. 

ed as Taro: I will say that so far nobody is trying to stop us going to this other place. But, these people are sort of here trying to stop people going down below the city, and they are sort of aware of us now.

Kitty as Nerium: Does that mean we should go under the city? Or we shouldn’t?

ed as Taro: I would say, ‘don’t do the thing what the people with the swords and the teeth say not to do.’

Kitty as Nerium: See, I would say that’s exactly what we ought to do. ‘Cause fuck ’em.

 

Gary as Natalia: The stuff we’re stealing down there— I mean, which we could utilize for our journey home.

Kitty as Nerium: If you’ve got a way for us to get out of here and under the city, Nat, or if we can come up with one, then I’m not particularly minded to follow these knobs to see their queen, because I don’t see why we… we’ve got nothing to lose, really, if we can get down there. See what there is for pickings.

Gary as Natalia: Well… there is one way that our presence could be not filtered out to the greater community.

Kitty as Nerium: What, disguises?

Gary as Natalia: No…

Kitty as Nerium: Go on.

Gary as Natalia: Well if we were to… silence them.

Kitty as Nerium, flippantly: Oh, what, kill them all?

Gary as Natalia: Uh, yes.

ed as Taro: [Sucks in a deep breath] Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

 

Kitty as Nerium: That feels very immediately risky because if he’s a commander, then I know Findex said that there was Gehesh and Sevren, and Sevren’s in there.

Gary as Natalia: I mean, Findex isn’t—

Kitty as Nerium: How many others might there be?

Gary as Natalia: I thought they said there was only three.

ed as Taro: Oh, he did say they were a detachment, didn’t he? And it wouldn’t be strange if some people were to go missing in this dangerous place.

Kitty as Nerium: One of them is the commander.

Gary as Natalia: But he does not have the element of surprise.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Let me just get this straight. We’re talking about going back in that room. These people have just offered us shelter and possible compromise, but we might just kill them all anyway.

Gary as Natalia: I’m just floating the idea.

Kitty as Nerium: Yeah, no – and you know what? I’m entertaining it.

ed as Taro: I will say that the number advantage is probably in our favor, ’cause I reckon, in a pinch, probably Windex would rather hang out with us than go down in the—

Gary as Natalia: That’s a very good point.

ed as Taro: —the Blood Hall, or whatever it’s called.

Kitty as Nerium: That is a very good point! Ooh.

 

ed as Taro: Alright, Nat, I think you’ve sold me. But what’s what’s the plan?

Kitty as Nerium: Alright, alright. So.

ed as Taro: Alright. Thinking about it, one of us might have a reasonably effective close range weapon that might catch you by surprise.

Gary as Natalia: Uh huh.

ed as Taro: What I’m suggesting is that perhaps I might walk into the room and sort of… do my thing.

Gary as Natalia: Ooh.

ed as Taro: And then… You might follow it up.

Gary as Natalia: I think that’s a very good idea.

ed as Taro: How about this: I’ll go out there and say that we’ve agreed, and I’ll go shake their hands.

Gary as Natalia: Yes. We will be right behind you. Well, not right behind you. But, as soon as it happens.

 

Kitty as Nerium: Which one are we going for first, which do we think is the bigger threat? Can I make a suggestion. If we’re doing this, then… the commander is the one who orders people around, isn’t he? He’s the one who’s in charge, he’s the one who’s going to be dragging us off if he gets to do it. We kill him first.

Gary as Natalia: The head of the snake.

Kitty as Nerium: As it were. And then… I think we can convince Findex, but maybe that means we can give his colleague a chance. Colleague? It’s not fucking colleague. It’s a fucking… brother in arms, I don’t know what you call them. Jesus Christ.

 

[the ending theme starts up under the dialogue, starting with the lone violin].

 

Gary as Natalia: Comrade? 

Kitty as Nerium: Comrade! Thank you. That’s the word I was after, comrade.

ed as Taro: I’m with you on this one. I’m not sure they’ve got much loyalty.

Kitty as Nerium: No, two friends is better than one and I don’t think we could persuade the Commander but we could-

Gary as Natalia: We could build our own private army.

Kitty as Nerium: [Sounds alarmed] Well, mmm! Okay, baby steps, baby steps. But yeah, if we take out the commander, and then see if we can’t talk to Sevren.

 

[the urgent drumming of the ending theme starts up under the dialogue]

 

ed as Taro: Alright, I think let’s do it. We’ve been in here a while. So I think we should just go do it.

Kitty as Nerium: Okay!

ed as Taro: Come out when you hear the signal. And trust me, you’ll hear it.

 

[The ending theme continues to play until the end of the episode.] 

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