15th Jun 2020, 10:50 PM
Dare to enter magical realm

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Dare to enter magical realm
You remove your helmet and lean in to smell the yellow liquid.

It smells... like an old barrel. You can't really make out the scent of the contents over the smell of aged wood. It's almost... fruity? Maybe?

You dip the end of your polearm into the open barrel, then take it out.

Nothing spectacular seems to happen.

The yellow stuff has the viscosity of, like... water. Or a juice, or a soda or something. Combined with the scent, you're really leaning toward fruit juice--but the only yellow fruits you can remember off the top of your head are bananas and lemons, and this smells like neither. ...Also too thick and too dark to be lemon juice. ...Probably. You've never seen a barrel full of lemon juice.

You grab a torch from out in the hall and expose it to the mystery juice. Nothing. It puts the fire out. Not combustible or flammable at all.

You dip a finger in.

It doesn't burn or corrode or melt your finger off. It's just... lukewarm yellow.


You take a deep breath.


Cici seems to anticipate where this is going. "Plaire, do not--"

"I have to know what it does. These barrels have been pissing me off since night one." You scoop up two handfuls of the yellow chemical.

"Plaire, no!"

"Plaire yes." You drink deep of the yellow.


It tastes...

a bit like grape juice...?

Wait, it's wine. You're in a church (/prison/dungeon). It's communion wine.

Why is it yellow, though...?


As soon as you swallow, you discover that it is not just wine.


The sensation is immediate--a sort of sour burning that only grows stronger and more nauseating as it spreads, feeling like it's tearing its way out of your stomach and into your... nervous system? Like a circuit system of needles forcing their way up your chest and down your arms and into your legs. By the time the horrid, burning body-wide discomfort hits your face, you've stumbled out into the hall and are struggling not to throw up.

"I told you!," Cici yells, trying to keep your hair out of your face with her limited bird extremities. "Are you alright?! Don't die on me, Plaire!"


Eventually, the pain passes, though it takes a little longer for the dizziness and nausea to wear off.


...And to your absolute horror,

your mana feels completely replenished.

"God... dammit," you mutter. "I was right. Th... uggghhhh. The yellow shit works like a mana potion."

"So you have to drink THAT if you don't wanna fade out?!"

You nod. "Unfortunately yeah, it looks that way. I don't... recommend it. ...Wait. Do you feel drained at all? I don't know if you've been in here enough to feel the difference in mana, or if accomplices even have mana--"

"I feel a little... lighter?," Cici confirms. "But I dunno if I could drink if I wanted to. I'm... not real sure I have a mouth in here. I think I still got a lot left in the tank, though!"

You head back into the barrel room to retrieve your polearm, and you put your helmet back on. "Your arrows might not cost much mana. Maybe accomplices get more mana than... uh... whatever my role is. Leader? Abettor? ...Facilitator?"

"The word accomplice suggests you're doin' crimes," Cici points out. "Kingpin? Mastermind?"

You have a small chuckle to yourself. "I only learned the official term was accomplice because I fucked up. ...I guess I need to prompt another error to tell me what the hell I am."


You watch Cici easily pick up the toolbox, and the two of you head back out into the hall. You're still thinking about the fact that she can carry that weight at all--it's a lot for you, even in here, which means the strength of her small egg form has to be at least up with yours, if not equal to her real life waking strength.

The difference might not matter--or it could absolutely matter. Kate swore she could kick some of these doors in if she only had her regular leg strength--but it's possible that she does, and just didn't realize it.

"...Cici." You stop. She puts the toolbox down.

You try to think of a better way to phrase it, but failing that you just spit it out. "Can you lift me?"


The problem actually ends up being one of logistics. Cici can get one foot on each of your shoulders, but has difficulty finding a place to grip with the middle foot, and there's no easy place on your fightball pads to hold onto; she's better equipped to rip your armor off than she is to lift you up. Trying to lift you by the head is a terrible idea, as is sinking her talons into your lower back.

You finally figure out that, if she grabs onto your forearm from the right angle she can get all three feet holding you without shredding you to pieces. Lifting you into the air by one arm proves doable, but also not especially comfortable for either party.

Conclusion?

"If I'm NOT as strong as I am when I'm NOT an egg," Cici begins, "then the difference is so small I can't tell. I'm a pretty dang strong egg, I just don't have the same leverage because... egg!"

You nod, and smile. Yes. Because egg.

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15th Jun 2020, 11:06 PM
Huh. Maybe we can make some kind of harness IRL. Getting to sleep wearing it might be hard tho.
15th Jun 2020, 11:10 PM
BJBlack
Oh, god. The title is a reference to that meme.

Wait, is our good author saying he's into that?

Oh well. I was opposed, so I didn't enable this travesty.
16th Jun 2020, 4:26 AM
+1. Need to keep this in mind for the future. Of course, there's a chance that the potion might... denature or something if it's outside the barrel for too long, but let's not discount our Cicis before they hatch.
16th Jun 2020, 11:29 PM
I expect any future bridge trolls may graciously let us pass.
17th Jun 2020, 12:13 AM
Good old Gunshow. XD
15th Jun 2020, 11:13 PM
Snervalton
We need to bring a thermos or some jars or a flask into the dream tomorrow night to carry some of that replenishing juice around. Now that we know we have a limited number of lives/tries to accomplish whatever it is we're supposed to accomplish we need to get the most out of every night.
15th Jun 2020, 11:16 PM
Snervalton
I vote we try to make it down the rushing river next. Try floating along in an empty barrel or on a door, that will leave both our arms free to fight or do whatever else if enemies or obstacles appear. Cici can rescue us by carrying us by one arm if we end up in the drink.
16th Jun 2020, 6:22 AM
pkrankow
Cracked door is still there...
16th Jun 2020, 6:37 AM
Snervalton
We have a screwdriver in the toolbox, we can use that to remove a whole, unbroken door.
15th Jun 2020, 11:18 PM
my conclusion is . . .Cici needs to hatch.
15th Jun 2020, 11:32 PM
Portal In Time
I think that now that we've got full mana, we should head over to the Dad Wall Fight. The sooner we get finished with him, the sooner we can get to exploring the rest of the dungeon without the idea of fighting him looming over us. We've made good progress tonight, and I don't see what else we could learn now without risking our lives surfing the sewers - something that can definitely wait a while.
16th Jun 2020, 6:36 AM
Snervalton
-1 to facing the wall boss tonight, we're not properly equipped. The Crush Souls dodge-roll powers would be best suited to avoid that boss's electrical blasts. If we end up dying fighting the boss tonight then the next time we face it we'll have to face a nega-Plaire with a polearm, body armor and fireball powers at the same time.
16th Jun 2020, 7:53 AM
Hari_Seldon
EDIT: first look at the cracked door then Fight Father Warden

+1 the DigDug powers might make Plaire immune to the electrical blasts, so Plaire can try to kill Father Warden
16th Jun 2020, 5:35 PM
Limrix
I think we're in a fine spot to fight the boss, but I'd rather do other stuff like the old door and the sewer before committing to that.
16th Jun 2020, 1:28 PM
Tep
+1 to boss fight. We're full, possibly have explosion resistance, fireballs, armour, and Cici. Let's psyche ourselves up and do this thing.
16th Jun 2020, 12:43 AM
Next time we need to bring along some other things like a bottle of water and what not. Got to be some way of making the mana potion not straight up gut wrenching. Diluting it with water, heating it, cooling it, adding sugar, mixing it with mashed potato, whatever.
16th Jun 2020, 1:11 AM
Frission
YISSSSSSS *u* Plaire, I are proud of yuu. Yuu is big stronk brave girl! Good jorb! <3 *hug*
16th Jun 2020, 1:36 AM
Now to get to the boss fight. Even better now that we are topped off on mana, so we can throw fireballs at the face.
16th Jun 2020, 1:43 AM
PsychoSoldier
Definitely a good idea to bring some lidded containers with you into the next dream. If just a couple handfuls is enough to fully replenish your mana (or at least, more than enough to replenish the decent amount you've lost from casting fireballs) then something like a mason jar or reusable water bottle should able to hold a good few doses. If you wanna get all cute with it, you could see if the Dumb Nerd Store is selling, like, corked potion flasks.
16th Jun 2020, 4:28 AM
+1. This dream runs on video game logic. There's a good chance that the potion might turn into water, or a poison, or just vanish if it's not contained in a Thematically Appropriate Vessel.
16th Jun 2020, 6:20 AM
pkrankow
+1 to bringing a few bottles.
16th Jun 2020, 1:30 PM
Tep
+1, but that's a later problem.
16th Jun 2020, 9:03 AM
Limrix
Mana potions give us a way to not die to running out of time, this is a huge find. I'd like to check what's in behind the broken door, we can use the toolbox to get it off, and have a good chance of putting it back on if we have to. This could be related to how the dream got warped in the first place, so we should be on our guard.

I would be fine with going down the river path if we can ride on Cici's back, and she can fly. I still want to have a way to turn around if need be, plus we should be able to shoot lasers and fireballs from that setup, so we're not totally helpless.
16th Jun 2020, 9:25 AM
So we need bottles for the next run. also stickers or something i am not sure if items we bring in and leave behind will reset. Also if we want to hatch cici we would likely need to play the demon trainer game or need an item maybe a boss drop. These are notes for later we may want to fight the boss and bring a torch the witch burning picture might have been a clue to father warden having fire vulnerability.
16th Jun 2020, 1:15 PM
Hari_Seldon
Now that Plaire can refill her mana, she should try to dig a little to see if she has that DigDug power. So she knows if she has that before attacking Father Warden.
16th Jun 2020, 1:51 PM
well we know what to bring next time. a Canteen to hold some of the mana potions. metal or plastic would be the best so it won't break and I say canteen because most are built to easy to carry while moving. you know like for hunting or for soldiers I guess a flask for like booze may work but it would be small
16th Jun 2020, 5:39 PM
I wonder if it's a health potion as well as mana, or just mana. Well, we can check after the boss fight.
16th Jun 2020, 7:44 PM
well we can't get the sword its in a chest. a locked chest
16th Jun 2020, 5:49 PM
Hari_Seldon
I wonder if Plaire should try to get the Whole-Ass sword or if the makeshift polearm is good enough.
16th Jun 2020, 9:24 PM
Snervalton
I dunno, getting back to the chest means going through a hallway that she used the whole-ass sword to get through(used it to kill a right-to-know). Also, we already used our house key tonight and the chest containing the whole-ass sword may have reset and be locked again.