24th Jan 2020, 9:29 PM
Return to the library to talk with Cici

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Return to the library to talk with Cici
You decide to go fill Cici in on what she missed.

That there is a cat at her place of work only factors into the decision a little bit.

You head out, locking the door behind you. The bus doesn't arrive immediately, but it's still a pretty short wait.

"Feeling better?," the bus asks.

"Sort of," you reply as you take your usual seat. "I think I'm mostly running on spite at this point."

"Where would you like to go, Plaire?"

"The library," you say to one of the screens. "We couldn't tell Cici much last night--not with Mondol's big brother bit going on. I need to--"

don't say debrief her

"--Give her the... deets."

Not better.

As the bus rolls out, you take a swing at making idle conversation.

"I'm... kind of surprised how few people take the bus around here."

"I'm a little busier on the other side of town," the bus replies. "Data suggests that not many can afford Chariot MT services in your neighborhood."

"Oh. ...I guess that makes sense."

Your parents paid for your pass, so you never really found out how much they are. It's... probably more expensive than a normal bus would be, especially if Chariot MT is testing out sophisticated AIs.

...You haven't seen any non-Chariot buses in Ninelives, either, now that you think about it.


After a little while, the bus arrives at the library.

"Thank you," you tell the bus as you step off.

"Plaire!," exclaims Cici. "How's it going?"

"Hey," you reply. "There's no like... surveillance here, right?"

"At this library?," Cici asks with a grin. "Please. Cameras cost money."

While petting Meatloaf, you explain the whole situation--the dreams, the visit with the mayor, and that there's people online that know... something. You also tell her what you realized last night--that the dungeon is tailoring itself to your memories, creating manifestations of your time in Addersfield.

"Wow!," Cici finally says. "That's crazy. Well, if you need a place to stay my couch is always free. I'm sure Bebe won't mind, that's a lot to go through."

You smile a little. "Thanks. I think... I think I can't avoid it forever, though. I need to know what's going on--if Mayor Parsons or Mondol or somebody gets a hold of the house and it turns out to be a doomsday weapon I'll feel like shit. And then probably die, because doomsday weapon. I'm gonna get all the answers I can outside the dungeon, but... there's some things I think I'm going to have to figure out myself. Now that I know it won't follow me outside, I need to find out what'll happen if multiple people sleep in the house."

"...And you're sure about this?," Cici asks.

You stare at her for a moment, at a slight loss.

She continues. "Like--I getcha. This is big and you can't trust anybody else to deal with it, I feel that. ...But you don't know what this thing is either, and you uh...

you still got a lot of life to live."

"I fucking don't though," you blurt out. "I'm broke, I've cut myself off from my family, you and Kate and maybe the bus are the only friends I have, the environment's going to shit and my house is full of demons. By this time next year we're all going to be putting Mondol in front of our names. I... I can do this. I can do this. It's not like it's prying me away from doing anything else with my life."

"So that's what it is?," Cici asks. "You're tryin' to be a hero now. You're still young, Plaire. You got time! You don't need to take the whole world on your shoulders today, there's gotta be somebody else out there that knows what they're doing."

"I don't think there is," you reply quietly. "Nobody I can reach and nobody I can trust. Assuming every owner of the house before me wasn't also a broke idiot twenty-something, people with their shit way more together than me have failed to deal with this house already. ...Including the mayor, who might be like a hundred years old. If there was a hotline I could just call about this shit I feel like someone would have found it by now."

"That don't mean it's gotta be you, though," Cici says. "Or that you gotta walk back into that deathtrap. There's gotta be... I dunno, drugs that make you stop dreaming or a way to turn it off. Just... live your life and do some couch surfing, you don't have to be so gung-ho about this."

"I can't keep running from my own house." You pause, still turning it over in your mind. "I'm sick of running. I'm done running."

"You were running yesterday," Cici points out.

"I'm done running from anything but cops," you huff. "I might not even do that next time. I'm just... I'm just gonna go out swinging. Biting as many legs and punching as many dicks as I can on my way down."

Cici chuckles, shaking her head. "You're stubborn as hell, Plaire."

"So is that a no to doing a sleepover experiment at the spooky house?," you ask.

"If your dumb ass is going back in there then I'm comin' with you," she replies. "You're sure as heck not doing this thing by yourself."

"What about all that live your life bullshit?," you ask, trying not to laugh at how abruptly Cici swung around to agreeing. "You realize you could also die, right?"

"Uhhh yeah, everybody dies."

You break, and laugh. Just a little. "True, but not everybody dies violently and tonight."

Cici taps the side of her head. Specifically, at her eyepatch. "Plaire. Do you see this? I worked the rest of my shift after this happened. I'm not scared of your dungeon."

God damn.

She continues. "They didn't pop me out with a 401k and a retirement plan. I'm a custom. You know how it is."

You smile a little weakly. "You're not just a custom to me, though. You're Cici. ...And my friend."

"Yeah," she says, "and that's why I'm going in with you. If I can't talk you out of it we're just both gonna have to fight demons, and I know I'm not great at talking. I'm warning you now, though: if it turns out we're actually fighting demons I will pick you up and I will carry your ass right back to the real world. If they start droppin' names like Metatron and Samael we're calling it early."

"...I think Metatron was an angel."

"I don't care," Cici says as she throws her hands up. "It's above our paygrade. I'm not happy about it but I'll help you fight your nightmares. Or my nightmares, or whoever's nightmares but that's it. No ghosts, no demons, I'm not even puttin' up with vampires. If there's really some end of the world business going on in that house we're calling an adult."

"...But we're adults."

Cici gives you a look.

"Kate's an adult," you suggest.

The look she's giving you strengthens. "Look me in the eye and tell me we're adults. Look me in my good eye and tell me we're adults fit to be dealing with a doomsday house."

It's really hard not to grin. "We are... legally recognized as adults."

Cici shakes her head. "You were lookin' at the eyepatch. Downright shameful."

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24th Jan 2020, 10:01 PM
We have such good friends ;w;

Alright, next step is to contact Kate. We need meds, and also I'm sure Kate wants to be with us for gathering our party. She'd never let us live it down if we took Cici into the hell dungeon but not her! So, let's ask Cici to help us get in touch with her. Then we can scheme with Kate about getting meds and also about figuring out our creepy demon house.
24th Jan 2020, 10:04 PM
+1 also see if someone can go with us to the back room I want to at least say we went there before we hope back into the dungeon
25th Jan 2020, 6:37 AM
+1, also we should let them know whatever they have on them comes into the dream, and it will probably be the manifestation of their greatest fears. So if they have any idea of what they want to bring, they should, uh, do that.
25th Jan 2020, 7:25 AM
+1, going to the back room first sounds like a good idea.
25th Jan 2020, 2:08 PM
+1 and don't forget to get some crowbars. ... That said if we're having a sleep over Plaire should play a game with party mechanics before bed.
a J-RPG or just an RPG. Best to hedge our bets like that.
28th Jan 2020, 4:14 PM
But also I think we should pick up some cheap toy weapon. Like a lazer or something. We dont know If items in the dream work how we IMAGINE them to work
28th Jan 2020, 4:14 PM
But also I think we should pick up some cheap toy weapon. Like a lazer or something. We dont know If items in the dream work how we IMAGINE them to work
24th Jan 2020, 10:05 PM
God flippin' bless.

Also, not gonna lie, I'm only gonna start getting concerned by demonic bullshit once Beelzebub and Belial come into play. More importantly, ah... I don't think most adults in general are fit to be dealing with doom houses in the first place, but that's neither nor there.

My blathering aside, I agree with contacting Kate next. Certainly seems like it'd be best to do that as our next step.
24th Jan 2020, 10:16 PM
the adults equiped to deal with Doom Houses are the ones that just don't give F*** anymore cause they can do whatever is necessary to put them down
24th Jan 2020, 10:45 PM
"It's not like it's prying me away from doing anything else with my life."

Can anybody else identify with this? More than one person has said in these comments that they contend with anxiety issues like Plaire does, and I would include myself among them(I prefer calling it complex PTSD). Ever felt like there's nothing else to do but pursue one particular mission that will make your life worthwhile because everything else has been denied to you?
24th Jan 2020, 11:08 PM
I think I've felt that yeah.
24th Jan 2020, 11:09 PM
Honestly, I keep finding myself *wishing* that I had one single mission to pursue, because there's simply so much to do and I can't figure out what needs prioritizing. So I can empathize with Plaire's feelings about finding a mission-- it seems like it would be oddly comforting XD
24th Jan 2020, 11:07 PM
Maybe, at some point if it's not too personal, we ask her about anything in her past she worries might appear in the dungeon if she's there? Kind of hard to predict. But if we go in with at least some idea, Plaire might be in a better position to save Cici if it comes down to it.
24th Jan 2020, 11:32 PM
+1 don't want any Spider monsters creeping up and Cici freezing up on us out of nowhere
25th Jan 2020, 7:47 AM
Having added players bring more demons... yes, we need to discuss.
26th Jan 2020, 1:42 PM
+1. The more we can mentally prep for, the better.
24th Jan 2020, 11:53 PM
Do make note to Cici (and possibly Kate) that we have the one bed and zero furniture. If they want to go on the house's nightmare ride, they'll need to bring a sleeping bag.
On that note, also don't forget to mention that keeping some items in your day-clothes will carry over to the dungeon.

ALSO, and very importantly, they likely need to play a game. Unfortunately we haven't nearly tested the nightmare dungeon's mechanics enough to give them solid suggestion. We don't even know if we're going to start off where we left off or be reset to the beginning; OR if we're going to be reset to the beginning BECAUSE there will be multiple people this time.

All that aside, we also need to do something with the rest of the day. There's checking in with Kate, checking in with Maria, checking out The Back Room, and all our various research and purchase projects to consider.
25th Jan 2020, 6:43 AM
+1 to all of this. I think the back room is probably too much for today, and we also don't want to go there with Cici, but we do need to play games. We only have one computer, so we'll need to switch out. Mustachio seems good for Kate and Plaire, and maybe Captemon for Cici? I think she'd find Crush Souls frustrating.
25th Jan 2020, 3:39 AM
lil Joshu
Look her in the good eye,
"The Mayor is a machevalian vampire who is probably just looking out for self interest.
Mondol is just a greey corporation looking out for self intereset.
The cops are lazy arses who will screw people's lives over if it makes their own easier, meaning they're just looking out for self interest.
Government is filled with self-serving beauracrats who are just in it for the money, just looking out for self interest.
Being an adult means not only looking out for yourself, but looking out for others as a responsible member of the community.
We're the only adults we know, and it's time for adults to handle this, because kids like Mondol, government, Ms. Vampire, etc. will only screw it up."
25th Jan 2020, 7:44 AM
Explains the anxiety having that worldview. Look in the good eye saying this.
25th Jan 2020, 7:07 AM
I agree with getting in touch with Kate to ask her for the meds and if she wants to join out party. Then head to the Back Room for games. We also need to buy weapons and basic items, but I'm not sure where. We're broke so buying guns is probably not an option (and I don't know if there is a way to get one, legally or not), so maybe we can get a crowbar or some other heavy tool…? About the basic items, I was thinking about first-aid supplies, some rope and a knife (if someone has other ideas feel free to write them).
25th Jan 2020, 7:23 AM
maybe a baseball bat? it has the least amount of danger if we're sleeping with it and is probably the best weapon for the least amount of money.

also sleeping bags and blankets for Kate and Cici.
25th Jan 2020, 7:52 AM
The clothes we were in with the potato were not the clothes we were sleeping in but the cloths we were gaming in before bed.

Since we will be recording and videoing gameplay because it is our employment, means of financial gain. We need to take some care of appearance and make jokes or keep accessories offscreen until wrapping them in our dayclothing while changing into pj's, and it may not bring them.

The pocket potato came, but the other potato in the hamper did not. Our cloths were in the hamper.

We equipped potato, then changed and went to bed.

Potato was confirmen in the hamper not the bed.
25th Jan 2020, 7:41 AM
Tell Cici about how things carried most of the day transfer over. Key, ID, potato...

Skills and powerups, so we are going to play some video games.

A concern, in my experience on platforming games, the ability of the weakest player has more impact on playability than the ability of the strongest player. The more players the more difficult the game as you need to stay together, with movement, friendly fire (or trampolining off allies) and movement over and through obstacles dropping down to similar to the weakest player. This might be a good video.

We will be recording the gameplay and webcamming ourselves because that is how we make money.

Invite Kate too?
25th Jan 2020, 10:08 AM
What if Cici and Kate start in the dream Alcazar in separate locked cells like how Plaire started in a cell? They need to prepare for that and get a weapon ASAP after getting out. One of the torches might be easiest I remember Plaire lighting a bone monster on fire to death with one.
25th Jan 2020, 12:38 PM
My prediction is that if multiple people sleep in the nightmare house simultaneously they'll just end up in their own separate, unrelated dreams. Previous owners had dreams completely unlike Plaire's, such as being strapped to a conveyor belt. Each person's dream will likely be a reflection of their own personal psyche.
25th Jan 2020, 12:55 PM
A reasonable hypothesis and why a multiplayer experiment is valid.
25th Jan 2020, 5:37 PM
True, yes, it's worth finding out for sure.
25th Jan 2020, 11:18 AM
Anyone in town know a practicing exorcist? Unlikely but worth a shot. Bring bandages!
25th Jan 2020, 11:21 AM
25th Jan 2020, 12:00 PM
Gohan: "I need an adult?"
Vegeta: "I am an adult."
25th Jan 2020, 4:14 PM
Should we check out any library books before we leave? What if reading library books is what gives Cici dream powers not video games?

Or maybe a book about calisthenics to exercise at home or ask Cici about calisthenics now or later.

Edit: Maybe Kate gets dream powers from music. So get some sheet music from the library or Kate herself.
25th Jan 2020, 4:27 PM
+1 to asking Cici about calisthenics and getting a book about them
26th Jan 2020, 1:48 PM
+1 to anticipating that different people will have different ways of bringing powers into the nightmare.

If time allows, perhaps Cici and Kate can do both. Play a computer game, and then read a book/sheet music respectively.
25th Jan 2020, 4:59 PM
You're still doing great work.

We gotta get all our friends into playing video games!
26th Jan 2020, 2:03 PM
It may seem trivial, but if Cici (and possibly Kate) are joining Plaire, then that means a lot more pockets to carry things in! I suggest a mixture of potential weapons/tools and regular household items. Plaire's key ended up having a use after all. The choice of items would be up to them though, but there's no harm in suggestions.

Also, I'm not sure when we'll meet the mayor again, but here's something to bear in mind. We may not want to relinquish ownership of the house to her, but there may still be room for smaller negotiations. Info from our experiments in exchange for whatever info we desire from the mayor.
26th Jan 2020, 11:49 PM
You make a good point. I bet one of them would also have a small toolkit we could bring-- things like hammers and screwdrivers could come in handy.
27th Jan 2020, 6:35 PM
update's gonna run a bit late, it's been a day
27th Jan 2020, 10:47 PM
28th Jan 2020, 1:16 PM
Consider attending an impromptu rock concert in a garage around your neighbourhood.
I've heard they're great for that kind of situation.