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File 124882296940.jpg - (172.89KB, 426x600, malice9.jpg) [iqdb]
16989 No. 16989
[ ] "This warrior's witchly allies grow wary with questions, and great would be their aid in retrieving your stolen wand. They request audience with Laufey's son and the light of knowledge to cast aside this fog of war."


Carefully you weave the words in your mind, a mix of direct honesty to catch the interest of the Trickster God and the prospect of powerful allies to keep it.

"This warrior's witchly allies grow wary with questions, and great would be their aid in retrieving your stolen wand." You state, trying to keep your voice in a matter-of-fact tone. "They request audience with Laufey's son and the light of knowledge to cast aside this fog of war."

The fire flows into a new shape, the features of the Fire God now openly amused by your words.

"Why, Sigurd Daemonslayer, have you found allies with charm and wit to aid you in subtle schemes? Or have you learned Loki's lessons, tricked and twisted them to your will?" The trickster wonders, his flaming smile slightly unsettling.

"Fast work, mortal warrior, for only yesterday did you dismiss all such advice." He then adds, almost as an afterthought.

Thinly veiled is the accusation, and to ignore it would be unwise. He is sharp indeed, yet perhaps it is this cleverness that will cause him to agree to your request?

"Perhaps, Loki son of Laufey, I wish to settle my debts as swiftly as possible?" You coolly ask the Trickster God, for no wish do you have to stay in his debt for longer than necessary.

"Perhaps indeed." The son of giants cautiously replies, "Yet is it truly of your own will you come to me? You are different than before, this I see clearly."

"As I told you, Loki giant's child, there are others who would speak with you. For their sake I stand here." You reply, again keeping your calm. But what does he mean with different? Perhaps he is only playing tricks with your mind?

"You are, mortal warrior, that is clear. Yet the wise man follows only his own will if he can, thus Loki wonders; Is it for your benefit or for the benefit of your allies that you come here?" The God of Fire calmly demands, his flaming features inscrutable.

"No matter," Loki quickly continues before you can begin to answer, "For the path of Loki is not affected by such details."

"Loki, I have asked you already." You reply, now in a slightly more demanding voice, though you're careful not to stray into the realm of the insulting. "And if that path you walk is yours alone, I wish to know your answer."

"You are different, mortal warrior." Loki comments, now genuinely curious. "Perhaps more than you realize."

"But again, this is of little matter." The trickster concludes, "For if an audience is asked, it would be rude for Loki to refuse. Yet I wonder, how have you planned to let these allies of yours speak with me?"

Truth to be told, you had not thought of this detail at all, a fact that must be evident judging from the half-mocking smile that spreads across the features of the Scar-Lip.

"A fine scheme indeed." He dryly comments. "Yet worry not, for Loki has many means through which he may speak." The flaming one adds with a smile.

"First he can borrow your tongue, and as such act through his champion. Second, if your witches are worth to call allies, their spells surely can call Loki to your side. Third, if you wish it, the sorcery I wield can summon you all into this mindscape, where we may converse freely." He calmly lists the options, none of them truly palatable, yet none of them outright unthinkable either.

"Can I trust you, Loki Laufeyson?" You ask while carefully scrutinizing the reactions of the living flames.

"Of course not, mortal warrior." The Son of Giants answers in an amused voice, "A man can trust no one but himself, and not always that either." A wise warning, you must deem it, though cynical in the extreme.

"So I thought, Loki Sky-Walker, that little is to be trusted around you." Discourteous words, perhaps, but ones that have to be said.

"You wound me with your suspicions." Loki replies with a cunning smile, "Yet perhaps not as much as you wound yourself." He then adds, his voice almost... sad, perhaps? You cannot place the emotion exactly, and in any case it is soon gone.

As for more pressing matters, now you have the agreement of the trickster and a means to convey the words. Which one should you then choose?


[ ] Let the Son of Fárbauti speak with your tongue.

[ ] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.

[ ] Have the spells of the Scar-Lip summon your minds into this realm of shadows.

[ ] Ask the God of Fire to wait, for you must confer with your friends before choosing your path.

[ ] Trust the tricks of Loki you can not. Give up on this addle-headed idea.
Expand all images
>> No. 16998
I think this is a test, and that Loki wants to find out where our loyalties now lie. Here are my thoughts.

>>[ ] Let the Son of Fárbauti speak with your tongue.

This option indicates we will trust Loki with our bodies. If we pick this, he may not relinquish control of it when he's done speaking, or he may use siggy himself as a bargaining piece.

[X] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.

This one indicates... I'm not completely sure. I think it indicates that we trust in our companions. It may give Loki a good chance to analyze what they can do and the exact nature of their powers before they summon him. Since they do, in fact, qualify as worthy allies and they do, in fact, know what they are doing far better than we do, I suggest this as the actual choice.

>>[ ] Have the spells of the Scar-Lip summon your minds into this realm of shadows.

This option... May be foolish? It stands to reason that Loki holds far more power here than others. Asking him to summon everyone here may allow him to trap them. It may also be the best option as it puts everyone on even footing.

>>[ ] Ask the God of Fire to wait, for you must confer with your friends before choosing your path.

This one will probably make him think we're nothing but pawns of the magicians, and relinquish all remaining hope he has in us.I doubt he'll even re-appear the second time; this will lead to him simply using us as best as he can and throwing us away if possible at the end.

Also worth noting is that Loki, and the rest of the Norse Gods for that matter, may well be watching our every move. On one hand, if they can't they might want us to think that... But on the other Loki clearly knew when we were in danger and asked us not to fight Yuyuko. I personally think they have a good ability to watch us most of the time, though Youki may be interfering with that.

Thoughts would be appreciated.
>> No. 17000
Wikipedia:
>>As a consequence of his role in the death of the god Baldr, Loki is bound on top of three stones with the internal organs of his son Narfi (which are turned into iron) in three places.
>>Loki is further described as being bound this way until the onset of Ragnarök.

While I'm not sure as to what manner of summoning the witches intend to use, i wouldn't want to take the risk of accidentally freeing loki...
...asking him to spell them into some unknown realm seems like a bad idea as well, for who can say how long he can keep you all there?

so in effect, we're left with one option that puts only us in danger.

[X] Let the Son of Fárbauti speak with your tongue.
>> No. 17002
[x] You shall not be taken as tool or puppet in this exchange, neither to gods nor mages alike. Whatever the Trickster speaks you may interpret and relay to your brethren in kind. Your tongue and mind are your own, this realm is the witches', and Loki's will blows weakly between. What need is there in binding either?

Fuck you Loki, fuck you Marisa/Alice/Youki, we'll do this ourselves.
>> No. 17010
>>17002
[x] You shall not be taken as tool or puppet in this exchange, neither to gods nor mages alike. Whatever the Trickster speaks you may interpret and relay to your brethren in kind. Your tongue and mind are your own, this realm is the witches', and Loki's will blows weakly between. What need is there in binding either?

very well.
>> No. 17011
[x] You shall not be taken as tool or puppet in this exchange, neither to gods nor mages alike. Whatever the Trickster speaks you may interpret and relay to your brethren in kind. Your tongue and mind are your own, this realm is the witches', and Loki's will blows weakly between. What need is there in binding either?
>> No. 17019
[x] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.

Something about Doc's writein seems wrong to me, but I'm not sure what.
>> No. 17020
>>17019
Hey its not like I'm trying to sabotage you or anything. Well at least not directly.

I didn't like any of the options we had. Having Loki use Sigurd's tongue is something I do not want, as mentioned in the previous thread. Having the magicians summon Loki seems like a rather bad idea since he wants to break into Gensokyo anyways. Summoning minds to Loki's realm puts all the power in Loki's hands. Asking what the girls want doesn't matter since the previous options were bad and we'd be a wimp for doing so. And we can't straight up and quit or we look suspicious.
>> No. 17021
[x] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.

We have all these fancy magic circles set up for binding, so what could go wrong...
>> No. 17024
[x] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.

Agreed about the binding circles stuff. Besides, if Loki tries anything tricky we have Youki there to hopefully catchy him out and stop him.
>> No. 17025
>>17024

FFFFF

Catch*, 3:50 am etc
>> No. 17026
[B] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.
>> No. 17027
[x] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.

There's no easy way to this. It's best to trust our girls.
>> No. 17028
Fair enough. I guess we should trust the girls. Summoning Loki will certainly make things more interesting, and everyone loves interesting things.
>> No. 17030
>>17028

I agree. I am also slightly worried calling loki weak would be insulting and apt to cause problems. Rare is the situation where being rude to a god will benefit you.
>> No. 17031
[x] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.
>> No. 17038
[x] Ask the God of Fire to wait, for you must confer with your friends before choosing your path.

At the risk of seeming weak to Loki, or, worse yet, making him feel that we are out of his control, it might be prudent to consult allies who are experienced with magic, so as to fully understand the consequences of each choice.

Everything suggested in both >>16998 and >>17020 raise serious concerns. Our witch-friends may not be familiar with the sort of magic that Loki would use, but even then, we could come up with proper escapes and contingency plans, should Loki attempt a betrayal. Maybe, if summoned to Gensokyo, he could also be swiftly banished if he refuses to leave after the audience? Or maybe they could conjure just his visage? If he were to bring us to his realm, would we have a definite means of returning? If Loki were to possess us, would he have total control over Sigurd's body or consciousness?

>>This one will probably make him think we're nothing but pawns of the magicians, and relinquish all remaining hope he has in us. I doubt he'll even re-appear the second time; this will lead to him simply using us as best as he can and throwing us away if possible at the end.

JUSTASPLANNED.jpg. What's to stop him from doing that anyway?
...But Loki knows us. He knows better than anyone that we are bound by honor, and that we would not willingly be used as a tool unless obligated to in some way. He knows that we -will- attempt to retrieve the sword for him. If we ready ourselves to defend against being backstabbed for this one meeting, we would be avoiding a possible "early checkmate". However, as he has repeatedly reminded us, we're still playing into his hand. There's no reason for him to abandon us. Yet.

>>17002

I'm usually all for the "fuck you, I'll do it myself" options, but wasn't the main purpose of all this to allow everyone to talk to Loki directly, so as to avoid having to lie to or misinform our friends? We already know what Loki's ultimate intent is, but didn't reveal it ourselves because Youki was present.
>> No. 17042
Don't have time to write today, so I'll keep the vote open until sometime tomorrow.
>> No. 17043
>>17038
>>I'm usually all for the "fuck you, I'll do it myself" options, but wasn't the main purpose of all this to allow everyone to talk to Loki directly, so as to avoid having to lie to or misinform our friends? We already know what Loki's ultimate intent is, but didn't reveal it ourselves because Youki was present.

Yeah I later thought about that, and it really is the big reason why we are summoning anyways. If Loki wants to admit to his master plan, then Sigurd can just feign ignorance.
>> No. 17066
Calling the vote for summoning option and overall interesting times.

It's Loki time
>> No. 17067
File 124907058034.jpg - (8.65KB, 298x294, doomsdayclock.jpg) [iqdb]
17067
Good Heavens, just look at the time!
>> No. 17083
[ ] Ask the magicians to call the Sky-Walker to your side.


You swiftly dismiss the idea of lending your tongue to the trickster's service, for this risk would be too great.

Who knows how long he shall use it, or what he would say when you have no way to protest or correct the inevitable deceptions and uncomfortable truths that Laufey's son surely will reveal? And neither would you lightly allow Loki to summon you all into his realm of shadows. Who knows what he may attempt if he felt he had the advantage over you?

No, far better then if the magicians meet and speak to Loki in a place where they hold power, and as the dollmaker told the sorceresses have not been idle, but prepared mighty spells that surely would be able to ward them and you from any threachery.

Reasoning thus you meet the gaze of the God of Fire and speak.

"Then, O son of Laufey, shall I direct my fair friends to call the Fire-God to my side, with their spells shall your way be sped."

"Excellent, mortal warrior, this will make matters simpler." The Sky-Walker replies, his voice neutral. Even so, you could swear that a quick look of disappointment flashes over his fiery features. But no matter, your course is the best one of the options you have.

You concentrate and try to remember the real world again. The scene of fire and darkness fades, and you find yourself back with your fair friends. Only moments after this you feel cold sweat break out all over your body, and you feel slightly lightheaded from this effort.

"Ya allright there -ze?" The black-white witch wonders.

"Aye, that I am." You reply to the questioning witch. "And to the Trickster God have I spoken."

"What did he say?" The dollmaker then asks, her voice coloured by a hint of concern. Little Shanghai floats over to you and gives you a reassuring pat on the shoulder, a gesture that comforts you more than it really should.

"He would speak with you, if this is your wish, and of the ways this can be done the best would be for your spells and sorcerous skills to call him to our side." You answer the artisan of witchwood. "Yet again I would advise you caution, for the Trickster God is not one to be taken lightly."

"Can do, an' no problem -ze." Marisa confidently states, her grin wide and wicked. "We ain't going off half-cocked here y'know?"

"Aye, this I trust, O wise witch of wildling wood," You reply, answering the black-white's smile with one of your own, truly grateful for the presence of this indomitable woman. "Yet I counsel caution still." You add after a moment, though you suspect that this advice won't be heeded.

"Well, let us get this show on the road then." Alice commets, a determined look in her face. Little Shanghai, floating behind her shoulder, looks positively grim, or at least little Shanghai is trying her best to do so.

"This we shall, dear dollmaker, the trickster I shall call." You reply with a confident smile, for in truth are these magicians both mighty and reliable, and what then have you to fear?

"Good." Alice answers, then turns to her doll and gives a short command, causing the little one to float in between you and the sorcerous array. A faint glow surrounds Shanghai as she readies herself to protect you, a fact that evokes mixed feelings in your heart. In the end you decide to be grateful for this selfless action.

The dollmaker and the forest witch then begin a soft chant of strange syllables, apparently with no rhyme or pattern behind them. Yet even so, you hear a faint sound emanating from within the string of sound, a haunting echo that seems to linger in your mind.

The power conjured from this enchantment bleeds into the runes all around you, the array on the floor beginning to take on colour and light, a deep blue emanating from the lines and runes written all around you.

You close your eyes and concentrate on the one you shall summon. You see the flames in your mind's eye surrounded by the blue, you see the shadow flickering in the sorcerous colour, the same that can be found around Aegir's hall, the same that graces the night sky on the long summer nights.

And then you see the fiery red reach out and meet the deep blue, you see beyond the flame, beyond the shadow and glimpse the man, though it seems as if an eternal distance separates the two. And you see the light bridge the two, you see lightning crackle across the void and the thunder of Thor roar its deafening fury, a sharp crack echoing impossibly loud in your ears.

In the world shaped from Aurgelmir's flesh you open your eyes with a start and watch as the fires rise from the center of the sorcerous array. You see the fierce flame form a pillar reaching from floor to roof, and you see the long shadows cast by the light dance and dart around the room.

You see the pillar swirl and contract, and before your eyes the flame and shadow become a man.

(cont.)
>> No. 17084
With bright red eyes he regards the scene before him, the flame-haired one summoned by this spell. His clothes are fine, from the exquisitely patterned tunic to the long red cloak he has cast over his left shoulder, and on his right arm you see a ring of red gold glittering.

His face is handsome, marred only by the old scars covering his lips, lips that curl into a broad smile as he sees you and your companions. So the Trickster God greets you, so the Son of Laufey enters this realm of spell and saga.

"Called by cerulean spell stands one before you, he, who by champion's will, bridged the wall between worlds to answer aright the questions of skilled sorceresses." Loki speaks, his voice gregarious and warm.

"Loki Sky-Walker am I, Loki who is Odin's blood brother, and Loki who is faithful friend to Thor Thunderlord." He continues his flowery greeting with a courtly bow to the mages of the forest and the old master.

"Greetings to you." Alice sweetly replies. "I am Alice Margatroid, and this is my partner Marisa Kirisame." The dollmaker's manners seem friendly, but within her eyes you see a hint of danger glittering like a shard of ice hidden within the deep ocean, waiting only for the slightest mistake of the wave-steed's captain.

"Howdy." The black-white simply says while idly twirling her mini-hakkero in her hand, a gesture that provides little comfort to one who has seen its power.

"I greet you, O-Asura-dono." The old master softly says. "I am Youki Konpaku, a simple hermit." For a moment the gazes of the silver-maned swordmaster and the trickster of Asgard meet, and for a moment you can see a slight hesitation in the eyes of Loki, a sight new to you, and a sight swiftly gone.

"And greetings to you, Son of Fárbauti." You finally say, keeping your voice neutral, for even though you trust the power and spells of the mages of the forest, you have also seen the sorcery of the God of Fire and felt its strength. You are not at all sure that you like his sudden appearance, but for now you must hold your tongue, for little good would it do to offend a god of Asgard.

"Sigurd Daemonslayer, as promised I am here." The son of giants answers. "For what purpose have you called the God of Fire to your side?"

"We have a few questions, if you don't mind." Alice answers the Trickster God.

"Not at all, fair wizardess." Loki replies with a smile.

"What do you want?" Alice replies, her voice now carrying a definite edge of iron amid the sweetness.

"Long ago, I forged for myself a wand of power, Lävatein I called it." The trickster replies, his voice unwavering even when confronted by this veiled threat. "Stolen it was, and now I wish it returned to me."

"So why have someone else get it back -ze?" Marisa interjects. "Why don'cha do it yourself?"

"A wise man makes use of his servants and collects his debts, young witch. Do not do yourself that which another can do better."

"Irrational." The dollmaker calmly comments. "If you are as powerful and subtle as I have been led to believe, you should have a better chance if you were to act personally."

"I have the greatest confidence in Sigurd Daemonslayer, young wizardess, that he shall prevail I doubt not." Loki replies, his voice still as calm and unwavering as it ever was.

"From another point of view, it would appear possible that you simply attempt to use him as a sacrifice to test the powers of those guarding your stolen wand." The dollmaker answers just as calmly, the sound of steel barely audible in her words.

"Let no man say that Loki treats his servants with such cruelty." Laufey's Son replies in a slightly wounded voice.

"So why should we believe you -ze?" Marisa now chooses to wonder, her blunt words evoking another look of wounded feelings from the Sky-Walker.

"You have no reason beside my word, brave witch, if this is not enough, I can offer no more." The trickster answers with a small shrug of his shoulders.

"Then why shouldn't we kick your face in an' make sure ya aren't up to no good?" The forest witch asks with a wicked grin on her face.

"Surely you jest, bold witch, but if the question were a serious one I would reply thus; The Law of Odin." Loki deftly answers the forest witch.

"To invite a man into one's hall and to bear hand on him there is the foulest of deeds, is it not?" He then asks while glancing at you.

The truth of these words you cannot deny, for indeed only the lowest of men would resort to such tricks, even against the most hated of foemen. It appears as if the black-white witch has divined your thoughts, for a small look of disappointment flows over her features.

"And it is not Loki's fate to fall this day." The trickster then adds with an ironic smile.

For a long moment there is silence, then the black-white's lips twist into a wide grin.

"Hey, Loki, this ain't goin' nowhere is it?" Marisa then softly says, a devilish smile on he face. "So, ever heard of Danmaku?"

"I have not, young witch." The trickster replies with a smile, though his expression reveals a slight surprise at the bold words of the forest witch.

"Wizard's duel. Honourable stuff. We go at it until someone gives up -ze."

"Interesting." The Wizard of Lies replies, "You would dance spells with Loki Spell-Weaver, brave witch?"

"Right, an' if I win you gotta tell me everything I wanna know, an' no lying -ze." The black-white demands with a wide, confident smile.

"And if I should prevail?" The trickster god replies, almost eagerly, his own smile no less confident.

"Well, I guess I could help ya with findin' yer wand -ze."

(cont.)
>> No. 17085
"But how do we know you will uphold your end of the bargain even if you should lose, Loki?" Alice interjects before the Scar-Lip can answer. One look on the dollmaker's face reveals her annoyance, probably at the fact that this idea to honourably challenge the trickster did not occur to her before it did to the black-white witch.

"Some call Loki Lie-Smith, fair spellbinder, but he always keeps his oaths." The Son of Laufey deftly answers the daring dollmaker, evoking a sceptical look from her.

"Is this true Sigurd?" Alice asks you, her eyes not leaving the trickster for a moment.

Strange it is, but in the tale told of him, Loki is known to keep his promises even if it causes trouble or cost to him. Many times has he sworn oaths to save his life, as he did to great Thiazi of Thrymheim to bring fair Idun into his power, then to the Aesir and Odin to save the same goddess from the frost giant's grasp. Aye, even though he often swears them to save his own life, you should be able to trust Loki's oaths.

"Aye, this is true. Often does Loki trick gods and giants alike, but his oaths are kept to a fault." You reply.

"So what'cha say, fire boy -ze?" Marisa eagerly asks the God of Fire. "Ready to dance?"

"Ah, my brave witch, know you not, as the great thinker told, that the secret for harvesting from existence the greatest fruitfulness and greatest enjoyment is to live dangerously?" Loki tells with a laugh, a sound full of approving mirth. "And believe me, fair ones, Loki is a God who knows how to dance."

"Thus Loki would accept on one condition," The trickster then adds, "That all of you swear an oath upon your honour that no grudges will be kept, no matter who stands triumphant."

"Sounds good -ze." Marisa immediately replies. "Fair enough." The dollmaker adds. "It is not the Way to cling to grudges." The old master then answers.

A small request, it would seem. Yet there is something that prevents you from simply accepting. No, this oath should not be sworn lightly.


[ ] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.

[ ] Accept his demand. The opportunity to gain certain knowledge of Loki's plans is too great to pass up.

[ ] Refuse his demand. This gamble is foolish for none of you know the true power of Loki Sky-Walker, not safe for mortals is it to challenge the gods.

[ ] Refuse his demand. If anyone should battle the Trickster God for his knowledge, it shoud be you. You cannot allow your fair friends to shoulder the burden that you should bear.

[ ] Refuse his demand. You know not what spells would be traded in this duel, and no man could you forgive that did hurt the beloved black-white in battle, not even one of Asgard's gods.
>> No. 17086
[ ] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki. However, make sure it is absolutely clear that no-one is to be killed or critically injured.

If Marisa wins, we get free info. If she loses, she has to help us, which she was prettymuch going to do anyway. This seems like the best option.
>> No. 17091
[x] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki. Just ensure Loki abides by the spellcard rules.

Wait, does Sigurd even know of the spellcard rules? Anyway, make sure the rules are clear before the fight starts.
>> No. 17095
[x] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.
[X] Ask the women to explain the concept of danmaku to Loki beforehand, though. It is imperative that he knows the rules to abide by.

I doubt that Loki will kill or even maim Marisa. After all, if he does so, Sigurd will be down one ally, and so his chances may be less than they would have been with her. He may be an ass, but he's not stupid or pointlessly malevolent.

I have, however, changed the wording of the second write-in to conform better to what Sigurd knows. After all, I'm not quite sure if the concept of spell cards have been explained to him. Then again, it's been a while since I read the previous threads.
>> No. 17100
[x] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.
[x] Ask the women to explain the concept of danmaku to Loki beforehand, though. It is imperative that he knows the rules to abide by.
>> No. 17102
[X] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.
[x] Ask the women to explain the concept of danmaku to Loki beforehand, though. It is imperative that he knows the rules to abide by.
>> No. 17104
[x] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.
[X] Ask the women to explain the concept of danmaku to Loki beforehand, though. It is imperative that he knows the rules to abide by.

>>[X] Add that, should noble rules be broken and Laufey's son attempt to enact some clever scheme of his own during the duel, fair friends will have a hand in it as well.

I'm tempted to try to add that... But I believe firmly that Youki will step in if he tries anything funny, and that Youki will be able to restrain or stop him if need be. As much as it pains me to say this, Alice probably would have been a better choice than Marisa to fight him. I don't think Marisa has a chance, but if Alice opened the book she could probably fight on an even level with him. That said, at least this will be interesting... And there's nothing saying it can't turn into a friendly(ish) duel between those two afterward.
>> No. 17117
[x] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.
[x] Ask the women to explain the concept of danmaku to Loki beforehand, though. It is imperative that he knows the rules to abide by.
>> No. 17134
All right, calling the vote here.

Writing commences.
>> No. 17215
File 124942884550.jpg - (175.60KB, 800x700, marisa5.jpg) [iqdb]
17215
[ ] Accept his demand. You are confident in the strength of the black-white witch, surely she can prevail even against the tricks and spells of Loki.
[ ] Ask the women to explain the concept of danmaku to Loki beforehand, though. It is imperative that he knows the rules to abide by.


You think hard and fast, but no matter how you consider this situation, your thoughts return to one conclusion.

For standing tall before you is not a mere girl challenging the gods on high, this is black-white Marisa, she who has fought and prevailed against beings greater and stronger than even the terrible thurses of Jotunheim, she who is counted among the heroes of this concealed realm of spirits and sorcerers.

True is it that the trickster's strength stands among the greatest of men and gods, and true is it that his powers could even lay low the great Lady of Borders. Yet that stroke that felled the gap daemon was sudden and unexpected, an assassin's blade expertly aimed and timed. And did not the God of Fire flee the field after the deed was done? Even his powers, great as they are, are limited and possible to overcome, for many tales are there of Laufey's son being bested in feats of power and strength.

"Aye, Son of Laufey, no grudge shall I keep. Little reason there is for me to feel anger towards black-white witch as she is victorious." You finally say, evoking a look of slight surprise from the Son of Fárbauti.

"Truly, Sigurd Daemonslayer?" Loki asks, apparently a bit taken aback by this prediction. "Your words wound me."

"The strength of mighty Marisa you know not, son of Giants, and defeat you she can." You reply matter-of-factly. Glancing at Marisa you can see the black-white beaming as she hears your words of praise. The dollmaker, on the other hand, rolls her eyes at the forest witch's triumphant pose.

As for the Trickster God, he seems to take the odd scene in the stride.

"Ah, has Loki been blinded by brave beauty, the trickster tricked and trapped by her word, wit and wisdom?" He laments, voice tinged by an ironic tone.

"Flattery won't save ya from a spankin', fire boy -ze." Marisa cheerfully replies with a small wink.

"Let it not be said that Loki would leave a woman wanting, bold witch. " The trickster answers with an amused smile on his lips.

"Then let's get goin' -ze." Marisa replies. "Hell, since I'm such a nice gal, I'll give ya a lift."

True to her word the black-white witch makes a small gesture with her hand, causing the runes around the room to light up. The sorcerous array crackles with power for a moment, then you suddenly find yourself standing outside Alice's house. For a moment you feel a faint vertigo, then the world rearranges itself is you remember it.

"Truly Marisa, I wish you'd not use my hard work to show off like that." The dollmaker comments, her voice slightly annoyed. In reply the black-white winks coquettishly towards the dollmaker and flashes her a charming smile.

As usual the old master seems unruffled, simply keeping his eyes on Loki at all times. It is the trickster himself though that seems to react strangely, for the only emotion you can see in him is satisfaction. Why you know not, but the God of Fire seems almost blissful as he gazes out towards the forest surrounding you.

It is now that a thought occurs to you, for if this battle will be fought with danmaku, would it not be a form of fighting unknown to the trickster? Thus you should make sure that the girls explain how this duel should be waged and what rules they should abide by. Aye, when men meet in noble duel the challenger's duty it is to speak the conditions, this must the black-white witch do, lest her honour be forfeit in High One's eyes.

"One thing I must remind you of, O witch of wildling wood," You thus say, immediately catching Marisa's attention as well as that of the others assembled around you.

"The son of Laufey is of the north, as am I. As one who is to battle in honourable holmgang he must be made to know the rules of this duel, the ways of danmaku must you teach him, as high honour and Odin's law demand."

You calmly tell the brave witch, for it would be foolish indeed to tempt the ancient rules of honourable duel, especially when one of the parties involved is the blood brother of Odin himself.

"Yeah... was gonna do that -ze." Marisa replies after a moment's hesitation, then, with a hard look in her eyes she turns to the God of Fire and speaks.

"So listen up fire boy, I'm only going to tell ya this once, so y'better get it -ze." The black white witch says, her voice now far more commanding that you could have imagined. She then spends a long time instructing the Sky-Walker in strange rules and rituals as well as the use of the odd cards that seem to be a focus for the greater magics used by the wizards of this realm in their duels.

"She can be quite a dear when she shows that side." The dollmaker softly says to you as Marisa lectures Loki. You cannot help but agree, for the black-white witch's will seems to have cowed even the far-famed son of Fárbauti, though whether this is an act or not, you cannot say.
>> No. 17216
Finally, after a few minutes of haggling, the Trickster God and forest witch agree on a strange set of rules, apparently limiting this duel to three spellcards each, as well as no deadly force and establishing a limit of the area in which the duel must take place among other restictions you cannot understand.

Agreed in this manner the two combatants take to the sky, the black-white flying up on a broomstick she has procured from somewhere, the Sky-Walker deftly ascending upon invisible steps.

"So fire boy, b'fore we begin, what'cha think magic is all about -ze?" Marisa now asks the son of Laufey as the two face off high above.

"Power, is it not?" The son of Giants calmly replies as you strain your ears to hear their banter clearly.

"Hah, like how ya think." Marisa replies with a small chuckle. She twirls her hakkero in her hand for a moment, then she speaks again.

"Half right, fire boy. Magic is all about power and love -ze!" The black-white shouts out, her eyes shining with light as she extends her arm towards the son of Laufey. Her voice rises towards the heavens as she joyously invokes her first spellcard.

"Love Sign: 「Master Spark」"

The bright beam roars its fury as it scorches the air itself on its path towards the trickster. Loki reacts swiftly, leaping out of the way of the white ray of power. Not being one who would let go of her advantage, the black-white witch sweeps out her arm and sends a scattering mass of stars towards her foeman.

Not to be outdone, the God of Fire responds with a conjured swarm of small fireballs, but as the second ray of pure power emanates fom forest witch's hakkero it seems like even the arrogant Sky-Walker knows he cannot prevail by holding back. His voice rings out, his voice calls the magics learned from black Surtur himself and focuses them through the spellcard.

"Fire Rune: 「Muspelheim's Fury」"

The flames awaken and shoot forth. The spell itself has little pattern to it, only a sheer mass of fireballs flying at breakneck speed. Fortunately the spells of both combatants seem to dissipate as soon as they reach some invisible barrier around them. And fortunately Marisa seems to be able to handle the bright walls of flame bearing down on her.

"Interesting, is it not?" Alice asks of you, her voice betraying an intense fascination at the spectacle unfolding before your eyes. Little Shanghai has taken up her customary seat on your shoulder, and the doll excitedly points at some of the more spectacular sights blossoming into being high above, occasionally nudging your head to call your attention to some scene you had missed.

"Aye, artful Alice, one day this will make a fine song." You answer, for in truth this battle can only be described as epic.

As you watch intently, Marisa dives through the tiniest gap in a wall of flames and returns fire with her powerful beams of light. The Sky-Walker rides the winds around the storms of stars and deadly rays burning brighter than even his own flaming spell, even though the fires called by Loki are nearly filling the sky itself. After a long exchange there is a flash of light followed by a second as the spells themselves seem to dissolve.

Both Loki and Marisa disengage for the moment, now testing each other's focus and defences with small blasts of danmaku.

"Inconclusive so far." Alice grudgingly comments. "That Loki is a natural though, few rookies can fight Marisa to a standstill."

For your part you fear this may be true, yet no matter how great Laufey's son is among the sorcerers of the world, you still are confident that your black-white witch is better. High above she draws another card, and likewise does the Trickster God. You watch the new magic bloom forth, and so you remember it for the future.

You watch, and you see...


Option 1: Marisa:

[ ] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[ ] A thousand shining stars born by black-white's spell.

[ ] Beams of brightest brilliance spinning around the witch of wildwood.

[ ] Light ascending from the earth, fearsome fury unchained by storm-spell.

Option 2: Loki:

[ ] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.

[ ] Darkness given form by Sky-Walker's will, silent, seeking shadow.

[ ] Runes cast across the sky, spells of Odin wrought by blood-brother's hand.

[ ] Mirage of magic, that which is there hidden, that which is not, shown by Trickster God's will.

------------

Pick one from column A, and one from column B. Then we'll see how this duel progresses.
>> No. 17218
[X] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[X] Darkness given form by Sky-Walker's will, silent, seeking shadow.

I love showdowns.

KICK HIS ASS, MARISA!
>> No. 17219
[x] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[x] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.

Marisa's strength is in sheer power while Loki's is in trickery. We don't want him using something complicated or deceptive that might make Marisa confused and get hit - giving both sheer power, Marisa's in her element and Loki isn't.
>> No. 17221
[x] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[x] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.

"Love Sign: 「Dual Spark」"
>> No. 17227
[B] Beams of brightest brilliance spinning around the witch of wildwood.

[B] Darkness given form by Sky-Walker's will, silent, seeking shadow.
>> No. 17230
[z] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.
[e] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.
>> No. 17231
[x] Light ascending from the earth, fearsome fury unchained by storm-spell.
[x] Mirage of magic, that which is there hidden, that which is not, shown by Trickster God's will.

hmmmm
>> No. 17233
[JE] Beams of brightest brilliance spinning around the witch of wildwood.
[JE] Mirage of magic, that which is there hidden, that which is not, shown by Trickster God's will.

...because I dislike fights where the outcome is already decided. Let's see if he can disappear from this one.
>> No. 17234
[x] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[x] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.
>> No. 17236
[x] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[x] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.
>> No. 17237
[ze] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.
[ze] Mirage of magic, that which is there hidden, that which is not, shown by Trickster God's will.
>>17218
Seconded
>> No. 17238
>>17237
I don't think that she will win. Loki has something planned else he wouldn't be so confident and laid back.
>> No. 17241
>>17238
Eh, don't worry about it. In danmaku, power's all you need!
>> No. 17245
This is an unusual choice, because most of the crowd is obviously rooting for Marisa, and both sides have fairly well defined habits and traits. Because of this, it would be easy to choose options that play to the strengths of one, and the weaknesses of the other. It's almost like this choice is asking "who do you want to win?"

Fuck that shit.

[X] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.
[X] Mirage of magic, that which is there hidden, that which is not, shown by Trickster God's will.

Picking what each side would most likely choose as it's respective trump card; Marisa with Double Spark, and Loki with his trickery.
Assuming that Loki is actually trying, of course.
>> No. 17264
[X] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.
[X] Mirage of magic, that which is there hidden, that which is not, shown by Trickster God's will.
>> No. 17287
Well, Double Spark is winning quite handily, but there seems to be a tie between fire and trickery on Loki's end.

I'll wait until tomorrow morning for a tiebreaker, then I'll flip a coin or something.
>> No. 17308
[x] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[x] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.
>> No. 17309
Calling it for Maximum Fire option.

Interesting times, interesting times.
>> No. 17311
Lame...
>> No. 17312
>>17311

Let's not say that, this isn't over quite yet. After all, there is one reason why Norse gods should be really good at danmaku.

In any case, update:

---

[ ] Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.

[ ] Flames once again, fires stronger and purer summoned by Muspelheim's scion.


"There's nothin' as powerful as a young girl's loving heart -ze!" Marisa's clear voice shouts with power and panache colouring her very being. Truly she seems in her own element right now, a foeman before her and an admiring audience cheering her on. At the very least the least the first part is true, for while you feel yourself rooting for her, the dollmaker seems more intent on observing the Sky -Walker's spells.

"An' now I'll prove it;" The black-white one continues before bringing her hakkero to bear once more. "Loving Heart: 「Double Spark」"

The brilliant, blinding beam returns accompanied by its twin, the two incandescent blasts nearly catching the trickster, obviously unprepared for the redoubled fierceness of Marisa's attack.

"Power is yours, brave witch, yet you forget who I am." The trickster shouts back. his voice carrying a hint of wounded pride. "I was born in the burning halls of black Surtur, I am fire."

He raises his hand, and for a moment you can glimpse the visage of something enormous and black in the sky as Loki's voice calls the power granted to him by the blood of his great ancestor.

"World's End: 「Surtur's Flame」"

The sky is lit up by a pyre greater than any you have witnessed so far. Within the twisting sea of flames you can glimpse the God of Fire and hear his clear peals of laughter as he launches great globes of fire towards the black-white witch, the explosions created by these missiles nearly hitting her, were it not for her breakneck speed.

But as it is the forest witch manages to dodge even this manifestation, this shard of the fires that Muspelheim's lord will unleash on the final day. She spins around and launches another pair of bright beams that slice through the firestorm, nearly hitting the God of Fire lurking within the storm he has conjured.

Hoping for some insight into the magical part of this duel, you turn to the dollmaker who seems entirely absorbed in the duel above. So focused is she on the dance of flame and light that it takes a few seconds for you to catch her attention.

"Loki's spells are powerful but unfocused." The dollmaker tells you as she notices your questioning look. "But in pure magical strength Marisa is the greater, and she also is more experienced. I believe that she will win unless this god of yours has something planned."

"Aye, fair fortune for us if this proves to be true." You reply, for it would certainly ease your mind tremendously if Loki was forced to confess his plans to your fair friends.

And high above the battle continues, both combatants giving and recieving glancing blows in their bravery.

Yet it seems as if Marisa does have the upper hand, for as the spellcards end it is the Son of Giants who breathes heavily and winces in pain, though the black-white's dress and broom also do show marks of the fire's touch.

"What's wrong, fire boy? Feelin' under the weather?" Marisa gently asks of the Sky-Walker.

"In power you are the greater." The trickster grudgingly admits, and for a moment his voice even wavers. But this moment is swiftly gone, his confident mannerisms returning once more. Calmly he draws his final card out and then stops in mid-air.

"Yet in battle a man should not be without a trump card, is this not true?" Loki laughs, his voice truly joyful again as he arrogantly confronts the witch of wildling wood. "I had wished to keep this a secret, this gift from my blood-brother, yet that was not to be Loki's fate."

"Hah, that's it -ze!" Marisa shoots back, a wicked grin on her face, "I'm not gonna hold back anymore, so ya better have somethin' good up ya sleeve."

The Trickster God stands tall with his spell in hand, facing the full fury that your brave witch can bring to bear.

She draws her last card and unleashes...


[ ] The power held within a heart filled with love. The sweet, final annihilation.

[ ] The night sky bound into black-white witch's service. Starfall shooting a thousand times.

[ ] The wall of shining stardust. Spell-shield, living light lashing out.

[ ] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.
>> No. 17313
[X] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.
>> No. 17314
>>17313
Fury like a berserker's, mayhap? Regardless...

[X] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.

KICK HIS PASTY ASS, MARISA!
>> No. 17315
[X] The night sky bound into black-white witch's service. Starfall shooting a thousand times.
>> No. 17335
[x] The power held within a heart filled with love. The sweet, final annihilation.

>Revived light, love bound within true heart. Twice the feeling, twice the fury.
We started with love, we will end him with love.
>> No. 17342
[B] The power held within a heart filled with love. The sweet, final annihilation.
>> No. 17343
[x] The power held within a heart filled with love. The sweet, final annihilation.

Marisa=spark
>> No. 17344
I've always wanted to say this, but I have to praise you, Norseman. Besides the obvious joy of weaving a fine tale, I have to say I love your diction in writing. It's different than what I'm used to, but the way you use words and handle their placement is nothing short of fantastic. What prompted this is the last slew of choices, all of which just so literarily (not a real word) pleasing.

So, good sir, I'd like to tip my hat off to you.
>> No. 17345
[X] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.

Last word!
>> No. 17346
[X] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.

I'm actually the only one who's rooting for Loki, ain't I? But that's ok, I still think he will win.
>> No. 17348
>>17346
Of course he will win, it is Loki after all, everything he does is just as planned. He is way too quiet and nice.
>> No. 17349
[X] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.

Finish him, Marisa! With every ounce of your heart!
>> No. 17351
[ze] The night sky bound into black-white witch's service. Starfall shooting a thousand times.

He's probably getting used to Sparks.
>> No. 17429
>>17344

Thank you. It is nice to know that one's efforts are being appreciated.


And I think that Blazing Star wins this one. Writing commences.
>> No. 17430
>>17429

hooray!
>> No. 17449
File 125003274558.jpg - (572.54KB, 1000x1200, marisa10.jpg) [iqdb]
17449
[ ] The blazing wind of power. Courage-conjured comet, flaming, fierce fury.


Not one to fight defensively, the black-white witch suddenly shoots forward towards the Trickster God. And not one to miss an opportunity, the God of Fire conjures a group of flames in reply, sending the missiles towards the approaching witch.

"Let's rumble -ze; 「Blazing Star」!"

As she speaks the words of power the air itself seems to ignite, and what was once a girl swooping towards a hail of fire is now an earthbound comet, a star sweeping aside all the lesser flames daring to challenge the sorcerous radiance born from a stellar sphere.

Loki barely has time to dodge the blazing wind, the trickster scrambling aside as Marisa passes him by, a retreat with little dignity that leaves him off-balance. Thus he has avoided the comet itself, so you deem it, but the exploding stars cascading from the comet's wake, however, prove a less spectacular but perhaps more dangerous sight. It seems obvious that he can not escape the mass of missiles at this close range, and that this duel should be over soon, yet something within you still cautions, still insists that this battle is not at an end.

"Rune of Odin:" The trickster shouts as the mass of stars is about to impact, his voice tinged by a hint of desperation. "「The Fifth」"

And as the trickster commands, the missiles simply stop in mid-air. You hear a small gasp from the dollmaker beside you, and feel little Shanghai on your shoulder jump in surprise as the Sky-Walker calmly steps back while the scattered stars dissolve before your eyes, Laufey's Son turning to face the next approach of the black-white witch.

"What was that, Sigurd?" The dollmaker suddenly asks you, calling your attention away from the duel for the moment. You turn to Alice and see wonder and worry dancing in her eyes and over her features.

"The runes of Odin he has called, thus I deem his deed." You answer, for no other answer do you have.

The song of spells have you heard, and many have you met who claimed to know the secrets that Odin purchased with pain and death, but none have you seen who could call upon the powers of these greatest of spells with such ease as the Sky-Walker now has demonstrated.

The dollmaker seems slightly puzzled by this reply, and so you decide to tell her of Odin's sorcery.

"Aye, fair Alice, for in bygone age Allfather Runatýr ancient secrets found, the runes he knows, and them he taught to the Aesir." You speak as you raise your eyes back towards the heavens.

"A fifth rune I know: when I see, by foes shot,
speeding a shaft through the host,
flies it never so strongly I still can stay it,
if I get but a glimpse of its flight."

You softly say, reciting the ancient song of Odin speaking of these greatest of enchantments.

"I do not know exactly what he did," The dollmaker comments, her voice now more composed than before, "But that spell is more potent than most wizards could even hope of conjuring."

"In any case this is not good, Marisa is using up too much power, after this she certainly couldn't use another spellcard even if the rules allowed it." Alice then continues, her voice suddenly both annoyed and concerned.

"It appears as if the O-Asura knows some of the secrets of existence." The old master camly comments. "This spell is not simply of arcane or divine origin, but rather a manifestation of the principles of the universe themselves."

To this revelation you have no reply, partly because you do not fully understand it, and partly because your attention is distracted by the events happening high above, for even faced with enchantments of such potency, the black-white witch has chosen well her own spell, indeed you suspect that any other attack would have been defeated utterly by the runes that Loki commands.

However, the blazing sphere of stellar light itself is no missile to be halted by the power of the runes, and Marisa seems to learn swiftly from the changing circumstances. No longer able to rely on her scattered stars, the black-white witch now tries to smash straight into the trickster himself, yet even to one who moves at such breakneck speed Loki proves an elusive target.

Ducking and dodging the fierce charges of the forest witch, the God of Fire attempts to counterattack, but his efforts seem to be in vain as the pure power of Marisa's spell sweeps away the bolts of flame he conjures. So this strange dance continues with neither combatant able to harm the other until the mighty sorceries of Marisa finally run out of power. The black-white's comet fades, its light burned out leaving the black-white witch without her shell of sorcery.

Now it seems as if the tables are turned. The black-white witch is clearly exhausted by the grand spell she has woven, and though Loki also shows signs of fatigue, it is obvious that the forest witch is much worse for wear than the Trickster God. But before battle can be rejoined, the remaining spells woven by both wizards dissolve as the spell of Loki also uses up its allotted time.

"What now?" Loki shouts to the black-white witch. "Is our dance over already?"

"Ain't much fun just dukin' it out without flashy stuff anyway -ze." Marisa replies, her very voice wavering slightly from the exertion. "An' agreement is agreement, three cards an' no more."

In reply the Trickster God merely smiles and shrugs his shoulders, and along with the black-white witch he descends back to the earth.

"That was a damn good trick ya pulled though, gotta admit." Marisa comments while dusting herself off. "Gonna steal it from ya as soon as I can." She then adds with a mischievious smile as she rolls her shoulders and stretches out her arms above her head.

For a moment the Trickster God remains silent, but slowly and inevitably his scarred lips curl into a smile and a small chuckle escapes him in response to the black-white's words.

"Honourably have we tested each other's powers and taken the measures of our might, bold witch. And bold you truly are, for this reason I like you already." Loki says with a courtly bow. "And Loki must admit that your powers are great, but be warned, for the runes of Odin are not charms one learns without effort and sacrifice."

"Heh, you're a smooth guy." Marisa replies with a wide grin while wagging a finger in the general direction of Laufey's Son. "But now y'know just how strong I really am, so don'cha dare underestimate the great Marisa -ze."

"That I shall not, for only a few has Loki met whose power would match yours." The trickster replies with a smile and another bow. "And surely you can master the lore of runes if you will but pay their price."
>> No. 17450
File 125003305338.jpg - (63.33KB, 395x553, alice14.jpg) [iqdb]
17450
"Quite the spectacle." Alice dryly comments, cutting off the trickster's words. In your eyes the dollmaker seems strangely upset at this outcome, but perhaps there are reasons for this. For even if you have lost nothing at this venture, you have gained nothing either. Though in your heart this wasted opportunity weighs lightly against the fact that the black-white witch seems unharmed barring her apparent exhaustion.

"I had not expected a draw." The dollmaker coolly continues. "Though it seems as if you two managed to ejoy yourselves at the very least."

"For my part I did, wise wizardess, this realm's spell-sport is amusing indeed." Loki courteously replies, keeping his voice impeccably polite.

"Indeed. Though the outcome is unsatisfying, is it not?" Alice answers with a barbed question of her own.

"Perhaps for you, wizardess. Loki finds little to complain of."

"Let us be frank with each other then. I wish to know your true motives, and I shall do so one way or the other." The dollmaker then answers, her voice iron and her eyes ice as she drops all pretenses of politeness. You see Marisa's eyes widen at this uncharacteristic lack of elegance displayed by the dollmaker, and for your own part you're inclined to agree. Indeed, Alice now seems almost unearthly in your eyes.

"Why? Little reason do you have to wish so desperately for this knowledge, for how do the doings of Loki concern you." The trickster slyly replies.

"Indeed, only one here has a stake in knowing the will of Loki." He then adds while glancing at you.

"You do not share your motivations." Alice shoots back, her voice still hard though she seems slightly taken aback by Loki's observation. "Why should I?"

Loki merely smiles smugly in reply.

"As Marisa did not manage to beat them out of you, I suppose I shall have to find other ways." The dollmaker then states as little Shanghai leaves her perch upon your shoulder and takes up position at her mistress' side.

The air itself crackles as the same iron-bound tome you saw three days ago manifests in the dollmaker's hand. Silent it lies there, but you can feel the malevolence hanging in the air and the bound power clinging to those bound pages.

"Threats serve you ill, Alice Daemon's Child." The Sky-Walker calmly answers, his voice now also carrying a hint of hardness as he delivers this peculiar insult. Strangely enough Alice seems more surprised than offended as Loki Scar-Lip names her, though this may be caused by his refusal to be intimidated by the power suddenly displayed by the dollmaker.

"I have no intention of harming you, wizardess, nor would I battle you unless I am attacked." He then continues in a voice full of sweet reason, "And great would be the wrath and vengeance of Allfather Odin against one who would harm his blood brother. Wish you to bring down his ire upon you and your kin?"

"And finally, as I have said, this day Loki is not fated to fall." He offhandedly adds

To this Alice seems to have no answer. Her eyes dart towards you, perhaps searching for confirmation that the trickster is bluffing, yet this you cannot giver her. For truth it is that Loki has sworn that greatest of oaths with Odin himself, and never would a man leave the brother who has shared his blood without aid when it is needed.

"If so, I suppose I shall have to bargain." Alice finally says, her voice full of barely restrained anger as her tome of power fades away again.

"A wise decision, fair wizardess. I will tell you what you wish to know if you agree to perform a service for me."

The God of Fire replies with a smile on his lips. "However, to no other soul may you share that secret." He then adds, then turns his gaze towards you and the black-white witch.

"And for you all the terms are the same. What say you, mortals?" The trickster god asks, his voice and expression inscrutable.


[ ] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.

[ ] For your own part you must refuse for no wish do you have to owe Loki another oath, but let your friends choose what they will.

[ ] Agree to this demand, but counsel your friends against it. Another service is a small price for this

opportunity, but you shall pay it alone.

[ ] Take up the trickster on his offer, and let your friends choose whether they will or not.

[ ] Ask someone for advice (Specify)

[ ] A bargain you can strike with Loki, but before you wish to renegotiate the terms (Specify)
>> No. 17451
[B] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17453
[x] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17459
[X] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17462
[x] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17463
[x] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17464
[x] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17472
[x] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.
>> No. 17473
>>[ ] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.

But won't they follow us, regardless of whether they, themselves, are obligated to?
>> No. 17479
Calling vote, writing begins.
>> No. 17483
>>17451 >>17472

wat
>> No. 17484
File 125011851842.jpg - (278.02KB, 530x745, alice17.jpg) [iqdb]
17484
[ ] This is a bargain you cannot allow. You may be obliged to serve the trickster, but your fair friends shall not be drawn into his net.


For your own part the answer can only be to reject once again the honeyed words of the Trickster God, for no wish do you have to owe him another favour. And were this all that Loki offered, this matter would be of little importance.

But this is not how matters are, for not only you do his enticements concern. To allow your dear friends to fall into Loki's web is not something you can allow, they have already suffered and sacrificed too much for your sake, this you know in your heart.

"No, O Son of Laufey." You calmly and clearly state, your voice carrying an air of finality. "This bargain is not one that I can allow, for a burden I bear, this debt of mine, and never could I allow dearest friends to be bound as I am to the service of Loki."

The trickster himself seems genuinely surprised by your words, but it seems more like the disbelief felt over another man's foolish deed than any other kind. You also see the black-white witch give you a questioning look, obviously somewhat skeptical of your decision.

But it is the dollmaker who reacts with an intensity of emotion both uncharacteristic and almost frightening. In a blur she whirls towards you, her blue eyes glittering with icy fury, her face marked by a strangely inhuman expression.

"Sigurd..:" She sharply speaks, her voice hardened by anger. "Why won't you let me help you?"

This sudden outburst takes you aback, the hurt expression on the dear dollmaker's face driving a painful spike of emotion into your heart. Little Shanghai quickly floats over to her mistress and tries to calm the dollmaker, but the little puppet's efforts are clearly in vain.

"Don't you see I'm doing this for your sake? I'm your... your friend, am I not?" The dollmaker shouts at you, the anger and hurt feelings shining in her eyes. "Didn't it cross your mind that I might be willing to share your burden with you?"

"No matter, I'm going to help you whether you like it or not." The dollmaker swiftly concludes before you have the slightest opportunity to answer, then turns to the trickster and speaks.

"Loki, I will accept your offer."

Your heart and mind still race with a strange mix of thought and emotion as you hear these fateful words. All you know is that you must decide without delay what you shall say next, for much does ride on this decision.


[ ] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.

[ ] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood.
>> No. 17485
[JE] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.

Like seriously, now is not the time to be apologizing and taking back what you said. Save that for later. You'll only make yourself look like a capricious hypocrite in front of everyone, not to mention piss off the folks in the party who haven't gotten riled up yet. In other words, don't dig yourself a bigger hole than you're already stuck in.
>> No. 17487
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.
>> No. 17488
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.

Sorry Alice, but this isn't your fight.
>> No. 17489
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.
>> No. 17490
[ ] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood
>> No. 17494
[B] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.
>> No. 17495
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.
>> No. 17496
[X] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.

The best possible thing that a friend can do is to keep another one out of inescapable trouble. I'm sorry, Alice...!
>> No. 17523
>>17485
You should really consider not posting with your name.

Furthermore, beginning a sentence with "Like seriously" makes you look even worse.
>> No. 17526
>>17523
>>You should really consider not posting with your name.

Won't help. Still too obvious.
>> No. 17528
>>17523

Oh come on, what did he do now?
>> No. 17530
[X] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood.

It's one thing not to have your friends forced into it, but what if they choose to go with you regardless? That's a sign of a true friend and ally.

I know this is against the tide, but I feel this is the best option.
>> No. 17532
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.

No wishy-washy Sigurd. Stand your ground.
>> No. 17540
[X] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood.

Their lives are not yours to define. If she wants to follow you into hell... She would rather to that than let you drift away, beyond her power. This is devotion, this is her trying to tie herself to you. It falls into Loki's plot. Certainly. This, however, is her decision to make, not yours. Respect that.
>> No. 17542
>>17540

You've convinced me.

[X] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood.
>> No. 17545
[X] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood.

God damnit, i can't just disappoint her. We have to be sure that nothing ever happens to her. Top Priority: protect your friends.
>> No. 17546
[x] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood
>> No. 17548
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.
>> No. 17551
[x] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.
>> No. 17552
[X] Apologize to Alice. In truth it was wrong of you to presume that you could speak for your friends, and truly it was wrong to thus reject her willingness to aid you, a willingness you should have known and understood.
>> No. 17558
>>17473
>>17484

Called it~
>> No. 17564
I believe I shall call the vote here and commence writing.

We stay the course, now we must see where it leads.
>> No. 17574
Did it not happen to you guys that this last choice was only presented to us so that we could choose the option that would give us some much needed plot exposition?
>>17564

In before SAD END.
>> No. 17603
[ ] Stay your course. If your fair Alice knows this feeling, she must understand that the same one burns in your heart, the same passion to protect those dear to you from all evils that may come.


Can you truly allow this? Can you watch the proud puppetmaker, dear, admirable Alice shoulder this burden for your sake as she desires?

You should, this you know. You should, for all free men and women may choose their own paths in life, this gift granted by the breath of Bor's sons. You should, for her feelings flare fiercely, her will to protect her friends, to shield from harm the ones who are close to her. For as Odin spoke, to aid fair friends in times of trouble is the noblest of deeds, and to turn down such an offer would be seen as mad by most.

Yes, you should let her choose, you know this best of all, and this is why you cannot. For within burns a fire, no ember of emotion, but a heart holding Muspelheim's heat. No more could you let the dear dollmaker bind herself to Loki's scheme than you could choose to smother that raging realm of fire itself.

"Alice." You call out to the dear dollmaker while slowly walking up to her. If she has heard you, she shows no sign of acknowledging your voice or your presence.

"Alice, my fair, your feelings I know. Better than any other my heart understands." You calmly say, willpower straining to keep the emotion from cracking your voice as words are woven.

"Within, my heart burns with a passion pure. Within, my heart dreads only to see harm done to those I hold dear, desires only to protect fair friends from all that which can do them ill." The words reach out to her, words spun by a silver tongue now unexpectedly emotional as you struggle to convey the intensity of your feelings.

"Alice, this I feel, as do you." To this the dollmaker does not reply immediately, for surely she must also wrestle with the same emotions as you do, the resolve to protect no matter the consequences, and the frustration born out of this clash of wills.

"You stubborn idiot." Alice softly replies. She turns her head slightly, glancing up at you out of the corner of her eye as she speaks. "What did I ever do to deserve you?" Her question wonders as it escapes her lips, carried on a voice equally happy and sad, as she turns to face you once more.

"And what about my feelings then?" She asks, exasperation returning to her voice and expression. "What if your stubborn ideas would hurt me more than anything I might be forced to agree to?"

"What then, Sigurd?" She angrily demands, eyes flashing with barely contained frustration. "What would you do?"

"Curse my fortune." You calmly answer while meeting the gaze of those proud and unflinching eyes. "And protect you."

For a long moment Alice is silent, her expression both grateful and slightly pained as she watches you. For your part, this is a pain you share, for you already know how this must end.

"Thank you. But I can't back down." The dollmaker softly replies. Even little Shanghai seems truly sad as she floats in between you and her mistress. The doll gives you an apologetic bow as Alice's voice again reaches your ears, a few, simple words filled with regret.

"I'm sorry."

What then can you say? What can you do in this situation, this accursed moment where loyalty and friendship have twisted even the noblest of feelings and forced this confrontation?

"No need, brave wizardess." The voice of Loki interrupts your strange standoff, his words calm and soothing, their divine grace echoing in your ears.

Both you and the dear dollmaker turn your heads towards the God of Fire. Loki seems changed, no longer the amused avatar of wit and trickery, but now far more serious, far more... focused perhaps?

"Sigurd True-Heart, you have good friends." Laufey's son tells you, his voice unexpectedly kind, before turning his attention back to the dollmaker.

"And never would I have made it, had I known my offer would wound you so." The Son of Laufey softly says to the puppetmaker, his expression gentle and understanding. "For this, the Fire God, son of Fárbauti, shall apologize, and this courage, seen so rarely, he shall reward."

"Explain, if you would." The dollmaker calmly replies, all traces of her earlier emotion swept back beneath a cool expression and polite voice.

"No hidden strings need you fear, brave one, for I shall tell you what you wish to know without demand for recompense. All you must swear is to keep Loki's answers from the knowledge of others, for a secret freely shared is one no longer."

For a brief moment you do disbelieve your ears, but strange it is, for you do not seem to have heard him wrong. Glancing towards the dollmaker you can see pure relief on her features, though she does her best to hide it. Shanghai, for her part, bows deeply to the trickster who returns the gesture with an amused smile.

"I trust no objection will be raised?" Loki then asks while shooting a glance at you, and truly you cannot find one, for even though you suspect that the trickster still holds an ulterior motive for his actions, he also is your only way of escaping from your predicament.

"No, Son of Laufey." You answer him, evoking a small smile from the God of Fire.

"Then, brave wizardess, let us speak freely." Loki tells the dollmaker, then the trickster calmly strolls away towards her hall. Alice glances back at you, her gaze meeting yours for a moment, then she too walks away with Loki. You watch as she leaves, feeling a slight sting in your heart, for this memory you have gained is a bittersweet one.

"Hmph, he can tell her, can he?" Marisa grumbles, obviously less than amused by this. The black white then suddenly spins around to confront you, her broom whirling through the air and stopping scant inches away from your face.

"An' you can be real insensitive, y'know?" The black-white chides you, a look of slight disappointment marking her face. "Really, ya gotta trust Alice. She's real strong, y'know, 'specially when compared to a dummy like you!"

"But if you tell her I said that, y'ass is grass, ya get it?" Marisa then adds with a wide grin, dispelling some of your unease with that infectious mirth of hers.

You look over at the God of Fire and the dollmaker, the two of them apparently engaged in an animated discussion. The distance is too far for you to be able to overhear anything though. You note that the old master also follows the conversation with interest. The black-white on the other hand, seems somewhat bored by the waiting, unsuccessfully trying to stifle a yawn.

Perhaps then you should seek the advice and opinions of your companions, for you feel as if you could need it.


[ ] Speak with Marisa (Specify subject)

[ ] Speak with Youki (Specify subject)

[ ] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.
>> No. 17604
[ ] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.
>> No. 17605
[x] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.

Good thing we sticked to our guns, hesitation is for lesser men.
>> No. 17606
[ ] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.
>> No. 17608
[X] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.

Best to return to a cool and collected state as possible.
>> No. 17609
[X] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.
>> No. 17626
[B] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.
>> No. 17634
Calling the vote since it seems quite unanimous.
>> No. 17636
File 125054406352.jpg - (247.17KB, 620x814, alice9.jpg) [iqdb]
17636
Short one today. I would also like to commend Anon, who by either careful planning or sheer dumb luck have managed to expertly avoid every SAD END I had planned for (and I fully expected one at a certain point).

---

[ ] No, just wait instead. You need to calm down.

Or perhaps not. You still feel on edge, for not even the fiercest battle has brought such strain upon your mind and heart as this ill-fated confrontation. Little wisdom would there be in trying to reason or seek advice when faced by such an storm of emotion roaring within you.

Instead you wait. Deep breaths bring back a measure of calm, and the thundering heartbeat slows as serenity drives back the passion from your mind. In such silence and stillness, forced into being by iron will, do you spend a long while.

Before long both the trickster and the dear dollmaker return from their talk, Loki apparently as jovial as usual.

Alice, on the other hand, seems strange, almost confused you would deem her expression. The dollmaker skillfully avoids meeting your gaze though, so you cannot tell as accurately as you would wish to.

"So what'd he tell ya?" Marisa unashamedly wonders, even though the one whose secrets she tries to steal is right in front of her. And from his expression you can tell that even the swift mind of Loki is slightly taken aback by the black-white witch's straightforward tactics.

"I... cannot tell." Alice replies, her expression revealing a hint of annoyance. "Loki here was clever enough to invoke a wizard's contract."

"Huh, what was all that 'bout him not wantin' anything outta this then?" Marisa asks, eyeing the trickster with suspicious eyes.

"It was nothing of that sort." Alice immediately protests while little Shanghai nods vigorously in agreement.

"The spell simply ensures that Loki had to tell the truth, but also that I cannot reveal what he told me."

"So what good does that do then? Really Alice, y'can be such a dummy sometimes." The black-white witch grumbles in frustration, evoking a fiery gaze from the dollmaker. As if a floodgate has burst, Alice hisses back a sharp reply of her own, and again the two magicians start an epic bout of inarticulate bickering.

Wise enough not to be caught in the crossfire, Loki slips away from the forest mages and strolls over to your side, apparently with something else on his mind.

"Sigurd Daemonslayer, it appears as if Loki's business with your friends is concluded." The trickster calmly tells you, the gaze of his red eyes hawk-eyed in its intensity. Seeing no reason to disagree you simply nod in reply.

"As for you, I have a piece of advice and a message. Aye, that is, if you wish to hear them." Loki then continues, his voice calm and collected. It still manages to annoy you tremendously.

With an ember of frustration and anger again smouldering in your heart you turn your gaze towards the Scar-Lip. Briefly you contemplate punching the trickster in the face, but for the moment you decide against it, for ill would it be to dishonour fair Alice by raising your hand against her guest. Instead you calm down your mind and come to a decision.


[ ] Very well, you shall hear him out.

[ ] Little good would Loki's advice do you, you not need it. Let him relay this message, but no more.

[ ] You have better things to do that listen to Liefather's newest tricks. Aye, with the dear dollmaker do you now need to speak.
>> No. 17639
[x] Very well, you shall hear him out.
>> No. 17640
[x] Very well, you shall hear him out.
>> No. 17641
[JE] Very well, you shall hear him out.

Za forgone conclusion.
>> No. 17643
[X] Very well, you shall hear him out.

Why not it could come into handy, and to be honest the task he has in mind is hard enough.

Why? Remember who currently owns the wand? (Hints: Blonde Hair, Red Eyes, Insane, and she can easily turn most folks into a greasy smear WITHOUT said wand)
>> No. 17645
[X] Very well, you shall hear him out.

Loki's a dick, but I doubt he'd purposefully give his pawn misinformation.
>> No. 17647
[X] Very well, you shall hear him out.
>> No. 17649
[ ] Very well, you shall hear him out.
>> No. 17655
[X] Very well, you shall hear him out.
>> No. 17666
[X] Very well, you shall hear him out.
>> No. 17679
Site's back up, so I shall call the vote.

Writing commences.
>> No. 17683
Norseman, i hope you will find the way back here
>> No. 17689
I return. Good to be back (and to have the site back, obviously).

---

[ ] Very well, you shall hear him out.


Calm and collected should you strive to be. for anger often leads astray. Thus you force away the demands of emotion, no matter how tempting they are. No, when dealing with Laufey's Son a man must keep his wits sharper than his blade.

"Tell me this message then, O Son of Laufey, and give your advice." You answer the trickster, for little would you lose by hearing him out.

"Wise, mortal warrior. You learn well." Loki calmly replies. The trickster's eyes briefly glitter with something almost like satisfaction, then he raises his voice again and speaks.

"The message is to keep your faith, mortal warrior, for the gods of Asgard are with you. Though you see them not, they work to aid you, though you hear them not, your prayers will reach their ears." He makes a small pause to let his words sink in, a moment of revelation and a moment for reflection granted to you.

"And that is what Loki was obliged to say, though were I you, I would trust my own strength and skill more than the blessings of the gods." The voice of the Trickster God then cautions, his lips curled into a half-amused smile.

"Was that your advice, Loki Scar-Lip?" Your reply, questioning and wary, for while the aid of the gods is always welcome, it is strange to hear one of their number to counsel against relying on favour divine.

"No, Sigurd Daemonslayer, not the one I spoke of. That is advice on matters more personal." Loki says with a wide smile, ignoring your unspoken question altogether.

"As matters are now, Loki Laufeyson wishes you only well. Aye, in all things I would see you succeed." He swiftly continues, voice gregarious and expression jovial, though the hint hidden in his words is clear enough.

"Thus my advice is this." The trickster speaks, slowly his gaze sharpens along with his voice, a tinge of iron and ice hidden amid the fair-spoken treasures of his word-hoard.

"First trust these witches of yours and rely on their aid, likewise with all wou would aid you. Not power or skill nor the sorcery of gods can prevail in this realm, for even Loki Laufeyson met his match when strength alone settles matters." The Trickster God calmly tells you, though none of the steel leaves his words. "Aye, only the Thunderlord himself among all in Asgard would win wagers of that sort if the greatest in this realm are as powerful as I have seen."

"You should know this already, Sigurd Daemonslayer, for silver tongue and well-placed words are the surest ways through which you can prevail. By these, and by wit and cunning, by wisdom from tales of old and secrets stolen from this land's wizards and wisemen." Loki quietly continues his sobering advice, for while you knew the strength of this realm from before, you somehow did not suspect that it would rival and even eclipse the powers of Asgard's gods.

"But, Sigurd Daemonslayer, there are other ways." The Fire God's voice suddenly tells, a voice both a whisper and a roar, like the low rumble of the tides crashing. against stony shore This strange, echoing voice is matched by eyes where the light and flame of Muspelheim swirls, the tale told by Loki Laufey's son echoing through your mind itself.

"On high it opens, path to the greatest glory, path paved with blood and shadow. Beware, Daemonslayer, the key to glory's gate is death, that fate must you face to find power to prevail in spellbound realm." Loki's words tell, words and more than words, for the weave of Urd can you feel behind them.

"Mount the terrible steed, Sigurd Odin's chosen, ride in his wake." The tongue born of fire hisses as it sears the air itself with its touch, then it falls silent, the light in the trickster's eyes fades, and as if awakening from a long slumber, the Son of Laufey shakes his head and blinks his eyes a few times.

"Ah, in truth I should stop speaking like so." He tells with a shrug of his shoulders and a small chuckle, as if dismissing his own prophesy so easily.

"Stop?" You ask with a half-smile of your own. "Aye, surely it is strange when words of truth-telling spill from Loki's lips."

"Aye indeed, mortal, for seldom do men wish to hear the truth." The Trickster God deftly replies, his smile growing even wider. "Nor do gods take kindly to them, to their great loss. This someone should tell them one day."

The God of Fire then turns his head and observes the quarreling mages for a moment, his gaze skimming over the old master as he turns back. For a moment you can see an hint of unease on his features, then the trickster leans slightly closer to you, his eyes and expression now cautious.

"And as my final counsel, know that the old man is far more than he seems." Loki whispers to you, his voice strangely both crystal clear and nearly inaudible. "Be wary, for not even I know exactly what."

You ponder his words for a moment, for truly the old master is more than a mere mortal, but strange also that even one of Asgard's gods would not know who or what he truly is. But even for one of such cunning and one who is known to be master of deft deception you would deem it hard to feign this reaction Loki has displayed, this admission you are thus inclined to consider possible.

"Then there is only one matter, one connected to this message of mine." The trickster suddenly tells you, as if he had forgotten something. Reaching into his robe he produces a golden arm-ring, red and beautiful to the eye.

It glitters in the sunlight, a prize truly precious you would deem it, for few smiths could you name that could produce an item so fine.

"This gift will bring you fair fortune. Keep it." The God of Fire tells, his usual, amused mannerisms returning as if on command, as he holds out the ring towards you.

Again an offer from this trickster gives you pause. Can you trust this offer, can you accept this gift in good

faith? If his words are true, and it has to do with his message, would this not be a gift from the gods? But what if it is not?

[ ] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift.

[ ] Refuse. You cannot trust that the trickster is not offering the gold of Andvari.

[ ] Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust.
>> No. 17690
[x] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift.
>> No. 17691
>>17689
>>I return.

WOO! Thought we'd lost you there.

[x] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift.
>> No. 17692
[ze] Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust.

>I would trust my own strength and skill more than the blessings of the gods.

By the way, it's damn good to have you back, Norseman.
>> No. 17693
[X] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift.

It could come in handy on the task, and I doubt Loki would want to screw over his pawn before returning the wand.
>> No. 17694
[JE] Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust.

Well, would y'all rather have a situation where you can't take off the said ring once your usefulness has run out?
>> No. 17696
[X] Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust.
>> No. 17698
>I return. Good to be back (and to have the site back, obviously).

Rescue operation acomplished.
>Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust

Didn't Loki Himself say this at Hakugyokuro?

[ ] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift
>> No. 17711
[X] Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust.
>> No. 17713
[B] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift.
>> No. 17747
All right, calling the vote for accepting the offer.

Writing commences.
>> No. 17771
>>17698

>Refuse. No gifts or boons do you need, for only that which he has won with his own hands can a man truly trust

Yes he did.
Great going guys, you just contradicted yourself from earlier. Keep this up, and Yukari will kill us in no time.

Again.
>> No. 17774
File 125236670972.jpg - (61.62KB, 640x640, alice6.jpg) [iqdb]
17774
[ ] Accept it. Ill would it be to offer insult to ones on high, refusing god-given gift.


Always is a gift from the gods welcome, and ill would it be to refuse the aid from on high, for though gods can be fickle with their favour, their displeasure is always a surer thing. Keep your faith, so were you told only moments ago, and thus you reach out and take the ring from the trickster's hand.

It feels heavy in your hand, heavy with the solid, familiar weight of gold, as well as something else, something you cannot quite place. Perhaps this is what men in ages past called the weight of destiny? The feeling of this item is alike one you have felt before, this you know truly.

"Pyre-prize have you taken," Loki softly tells, his voice suddenly cool and harsh, his expression twisted into a

frown, as if he were recalling an ill memory of old.. "Aye, teasure that ring, for a great price it fetched, only one purchase of mine has yet claimed such a cost."

A fine gift indeed, if even Loki feels the price was high, this you must admit. Yet there is something in this tale that gives you cause for suspicion, or perhaps it is a faint recognition of a tale of old you feel at the edge of your mind, yet for the moment this eludes you. But for the moment this matter can wait, for another one calls your attention.

"Then, O Son of Giants, your business here is done?" You calmly ask the trickster, meeting the fire-red eyes of Laufey's son.

"Indeed, Sigurd Daemonslayer, that it is." He replies, eyes glittering with expectation.

Fire within, this you see in Laufey's Son, his flames fanned, flaming forth, flowing far. Yet no blaze of gods or giants can match the inferno rising from your heart this moment, Muspelheim unbound within your heart, bright like Surtur's sword, warm like Sol's gaze it is, song-smith's passion as he raises his voice and speaks.

"Then listen, son of Fárbauti, for once I shall tell you these words." You calmly say, for this fire of yours all men surely can see, this even one born of fire must know.

"Do as you will, Loki Laufey's son, yet know this. God or giant, son of Rig or Alfheim's child, none in nine worlds may harm sword-swift song-smith's fair friends." Your voice echoes as you tell this final warning to the Trickster God.

"Your wishes, your schemes and plots, be they what they may, but never shall they bring grief, harm or sorrow to his beloved ones. Never, or the fate promised by long dead seeress shall seem slight, serpent's sting swiftly sought succour." The voice born of passion tells, thundering sound though softly spoken.

"Very well, mortal warrior." He replies, smile long gone, laugh left lingering at long-left roadside. Now you see the jovial expression's reflection, the scion of Jötunheim hidden behind the wide-famed wit and lingering laugh, that cold, hard flame flickers in your sight this moment. Slowly he raises his hand in a calming gesture and speaks.

"This I tell you, Sigurd Daemonslayer, aye this I swear, for that you have earned, even though you forget your place; That no wish do I have to harm your friends. Little you tell that Loki did not know before, and already Loki did intend to do no harm to these you would call beloved." The hard and cool voice of Loki replies, though his words and voice are not unfriendly despite their rough edge.

"Then remember these words we have spoken." You answer, though his words calm you sightly, his sworn oath soothing your soul.

"I shall, mortal, of this you can have no doubt." Loki calmly replies, red eyes glittering with hidden fire. "As should you."

For a few moments man and god stand in silence, for little can you think of to say. Still you are unsure whether the trickster is friend, foe or both, but there is little doubt that he shall play a great part in your future fortunes.

Finally it is the God of Fire that breaks the silence accompanied by a shrug of his shoulders.

"If no other boon is sought, then Loki's time shall be spent in other ways." He tells with a smile, his voice warm again. "For many things still need doing, many other matters that call upon Loki's attention, as do your own affairs upon yours, Sigurd Daemonslayer."

To this you have nothing to reply, for while you suspect that the matters thet require Loki's attention are ones of mischief, he is right in that you have more pressing matters than the Liefather to deal with.

Thus you turn around and walk back towards your waiting companions. The old master still seems as calm as ever, yet as honoured in your mind as he is, you can spare little attention upon him.

It is the two magicians, and above all the artful dollmaker that fills your heart this moment. She stands alone, her back turned towards the cause of her present agitation. Likewise the black-white witch seems to be deliberately ignoring the dollmaker, though when she sees you, the forest witch is swift to spring to action, nearly leaping to meet you as you approach.

With a gesture she calls you to halt your stride, and curious about her wish, you comply. Marisa looks up at you, then her gaze darts to the dollmaker, who still is artfully ignoring all others. The black-white returns her eyes to your direction, looks up towards you while biting her lower lip, and thus a moment or two passes until she can find her words.

"Hey, you two make up right now, y'hear?" The black-white witch softly tells you. "An if ya make Alice cry, you'll answer to me, got it?" The forest witch then adds with a wink, only half playful.

"I wish to, O faithful Marisa." You simply reply, for nothing more can you answer, no wit-wise weave of words is yours to call upon in this moment. The black-white gives you a grateful smile and passes you by, walking off towards the hall of the dollmaker. Looking back you see the old master giving you an encouraging nod, then he likewise leaves, leaving you alone with the dear dollmaker, alone so you can speak freely and, you hope, mend this rift between you. Of the Trickster God you see no sign.

"Sigurd." She softly calls to you as you halt your stride, slowly she turns around and meets your gaze, her eyes clear and calm, yet cautious all the same.

"I'm sorry I snapped at you like that." She gently tells without a moment's hesitation. "I understand why you did what you did, and, well, to be honest I think I'd have done the same if I were you."

"Alice," you gently reply "To forgive is not for I, for it is not you who is at fault."

Indeed, you know it in your heart, that little right did you have to do what you did, unwise it was, against Allfather's law and an slight upon the dollmaker's honour to so refuse her heartfelt offer, even though your heart did not allow you any other course of action. But what is done is done, and no man can escape the consequences of his actions.

"Alice, dear dollmaker, I wished only to protect those I hold dear, this you know, no other path my heart gave me to follow." You calmly and carfully say, with willpower you keep the emotion from your voice. "Yet that path was not the noblest one, for on it this tale-weaver strayed from the way he wishes to take through his life."

"Your honour have I tarnished, your heart have I hurt. That blame is mine, and for this it is I who must beg for forgiveness." You then say, the words stinging you like serpents' etter, for true and terrible they are. The only thing now is to await the reply of the crafter of puppets.

"Oh gods, you utter, incorrigible fool. What am I going to do about you?" The dollmaker replies with a sigh and a small shake of her head, tough the tone of her voice is strangely grateful. "I'll forgive you this time, but don't you dare do anything like that again."

For a moment there is silence, calm and comfortable, a brief space for you to breathe easily. Little Shanghai floats over to you and hugs your arm, smiling warmly all the while, and after a moment the lips of her mistress also curl into a warm and kindly smile.

"Thank you, Sigurd." The dollmaker tells, her voice glad and grateful.

"For what?" You reply, both greatly relieved and slightly confused by her comment.

Alice doesn't reply immediately, her slight hesitation only serving to further feed your curiosity. When she finally speaks her voice is soft, though determination shines in her eyes.

"Because you treat me like a regular girl." The dollmaker replies. "I appreciate that. I really do."

"Is there a reason not to, then?" You wonder, for despite her being a witch, you still see no cause for why men would treat her other than any lady of grace and power.

"I am a Youkai." She replies after a moment's hesitation, her expression suddenly far sadder than you have seen so far. "And people have long memories."

"Alice, no matter what, this song-smith shall not stray from your side if you need him." You answer, voice strong and reassuring. "No danger too grave, no foe too foul, not wit-wise word or darkest deed should sunder us, this I wish."

The dollmaker's eyes widen slightly at your words, her melancholy expression fading into another, one you can read only barely. Wariness perhaps, or maybe simple hesitation, along with a hint of curiosity.

"I thought you might say something like that Sigurd." She answers, an enigmatic smile on her lips. "Now I have to know, why do you go so far for my sake? Please tell me."

Her request is plain, simple even. And likewise is your repy, indeed you already know it in your heart.


[ ] For the sake of duty.

[ ] For the sake of friendship.

[ ] For the sake of love.
>> No. 17775
[x] For the sake of duty to friendship.
>> No. 17776
[JE] For the sake of love.

Well, there's a lot of different forms of "love", though I admit Norsey's a bit of a sadistic sonuvagun throwing this card at the readership. Here goes nothin'.
>> No. 17777
[x] For the sake of friendship.
>> No. 17778
[x] For the sake of love.

13 Threads now, it is kind of time that we go a bit into the direction, plus alice is just too cute...
>> No. 17780
[X] For the sake of love.

Nothing wrong with loving your friends.
>> No. 17781
[B] For the sake of friendship.
>> No. 17782
"If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing."

[X] For the sake of love.

Why not?
>> No. 17783
[X] For the sake of love.
>> No. 17784
[x] For the sake of love.

1. I don't like Marisa just on principle (even if this one is all right).

2. I like Alice.

3. If there's a snowball's chance in hell of ever getting a harem route, I'm not really sure it will be helped by saying "I stick around you because I have to" or "I stick around because you're a good friend."

...Maybe that last, but I don't think so.

Either way, if we have to choose, I'd like an Alice, please.
>> No. 17786
[X] For the sake of love.

It just feels right.
>> No. 17790
>Either way, if we have to choose, I'd like an Alice, please.

I was thinking the same thing too. I would like if we could choose Yukari, but that is hard to get and Anon would need to want this too.
It is time that we choose a good wife, beside pillaging a Viking needs a good woman beside him.
>> No. 17792
[ ] For the sake of friendship.
>> No. 17800
[X] For the sake of love.

Yeah, it's about time for a route lock, isn't?
>> No. 17801
[ze] For the sake of friendship.
>> No. 17803
>>17801
That's my mark, you bastard.
>> No. 17806
>>17803
>>17801

Fight fight fight fight fight
>> No. 17811
I was going to call the vote here, but due to a few ales too many I'm not really in shape to write anything, so I'll let the vote run until tomorrow morning.

tl;dr: Writefag's well-known wastrel ways surely slow song-weave. What wrathful fate shall him befall?
>> No. 17817
>>17811
Mjöllnir pounding against your skull for the next day or so.
Best watch your consumption of alcohol next time.

And just so this post isn't completely useless:
[X]For the sake of love.
>> No. 17820
>>17817

"Less good than they say for the sons of men
is the drinking oft of ale:
for the more they drink, the less can they think
and keep a watch o'er their wits."

...well, t'was nothing that serious though.


And calling the vote here. Love it is.
>> No. 17821
>>17820
>And calling the vote here. Love it is.
I wonder what the outcome will be.
>> No. 17844
I'm having slight problems with this update. Please wait warmly until it's ready.
>> No. 17886
Is everything going okay?
>> No. 17887
File 125288835473.png - (270.29KB, 500x769, alice18.png) [iqdb]
17887
I should be done with it by tomorrow if all goes well.

Have some Alice as compensation for my tardiness.
>> No. 17890
>>17887

Is she holding her book? Cause if not...daaaaauuum.
>> No. 17906
File 125297616116.jpg - (114.78KB, 600x652, alice20.jpg) [iqdb]
17906
[ ] For the sake of love.


For what heart has not known the touch of this emotion? Always have you pushed this moment into the future, always have you had other matters to deal with, dance of blades and settling of debts, honour to uphold and riddles to solve. And perhaps also some doubt of your own, some confusion about your true feelings.

No more, for you now know where to find your precious thing.

"Dear Alice." You softly tell her, steeling yourself for this performance, for this is in truth one that deserves all your wit and skill. "Listen, I beg you, and know I speak true."

Calm and power carry your words, though softly spoken, clear and true to her ears.

"For duty is dread death faced,
Bold by battle-call's sound,
Spear is shook, shield is splintered,
So all men of honour fight, for the sake of duty."

The staves flow forth from your tongue, taking a life of their own as your feelings pour into the word-weave, your

voice slowly growing in intensity as you speak.

"For friendship is dark doom fair price,
Against mighty men and fate's cold hand,
When Helhalla's gate yawns open,
Noble men stand firm, for the sake of friendship."

You pick up the pace slightly, building up to the crescendo. Behind her shoulder, you can see little Shanghai giving you an vigorous thumbs-up and a wide smile, and thus encouraged you meet the gaze of the beautiful, blue eyes of Alice and in them you see expectation and a faint hint of hopefulness.

"For you, dear Alice, this and more,
Heart and honour gladly given, life and all my glory,
Fair price, more than fair, with joy would I it pay,"

"This," You whisper to her, and for all your bravery and confidence, the next words fill you with both dread and hope that you have seldom felt in your days. "Only for the sake of love."

As the final word leaves your lips, the dear dollmaker silently mouths it along with you. Slowly she then takes a step forward and wraps her arms around you, and likewise you embrace her tightly. A slight shiver runs through your body as you hold her in your arms, when you feel her warmth, see her beautiful smile and her eyes bright with joy.

"Sigurd." She speaks, a moment's hesitation before her next words then follows, a moment when her cheeks grow rosy red in a most becoming way. Swiftly gone is the hesitation, followed by words whispered by voice warm with desire.

"Kiss me."

Slowly and gently you lower your head towards hers, savouring this moment where her lips part, where her body trembles slightly in your arms and where her arms wrap around your neck as she stands up on tiptoe and meets your lips with hers.

Her tongue gently touches your own, like a jolt of lightning this sensation shoots through your entire body. You feel the sweet warmth of her mouth, your tongue brushes against strangely sharp teeth, and there is surprising strength in her arms as she pulls you closer to her.

You feel your own heart beating steadily like a great drum, your own mind filled with a calm bliss and you know that fair fortune is yours at last. So you and her spend several long moments before your lips part.

"That was wonderful." Your dear Alice tells you, her smile radiant as Sol's shining gaze in your eyes.

"For me as well, dear Alice." You reply, feeling better and more confident than you have in a long, long time. "For in not my love fair as the morning sun, and her kiss sweeter than honey?"

"Oh my." The dollmaker replies, her smile now slightly mischievious. "Yours are very good as well. Tempting, in fact."

And with those words she floats up slightly so that her face is level with yours, and again she brings her lips to yours and shares with you another passionate kiss.

Too soon the moment fades, only to be replaced with another, perhaps more pleasurable one. Without hesitation or forewarning, your dear Alice's voice reaches your ears.

"And I love you Sigurd. With all my heart."

"No words have I heard more pleasing than those, my love." You reply, your smile wide and your heart filled with a warm and wonderful feeling. The two of you share a long silence in each others' arms, enchanted by the simple pleasure of being so close to one you love.

"Sigurd." She finally says, then hesitates for a long moment. But finally she floats down and takes a step back, thus your pleasant embrace is ended.

"Much as I would like to continue, I'm afraid we have little time to waste." She tells you, voice determined and strong, yet a hint of annoyance is there as well. "I have to speak to you and the others about Loki."

Nothing good without bad, so have you heard men say. Thus you push away your disappointment, for still trickster's plot may bring harm to dear Alice, and for her sake any burden you bear will be light.

"Aye then, if wisdom so wishes." You reply with a small sigh, tongue spinning forth words from your memory.

"Though long is a day, long is a second, how can I wait through three?"

"If you believe you can keep me waiting that long, you are sorely mistaken." Alice answers with a cunning smile, then she takes your hand as you begin to make your way back to her hall. To her words you can find no reply, only the knowledge that you truly are a man who has found fortune at last.

The two of you enter the house of your dear dollmaker, and as soon as you step into the kitchen you see the black-white witch and the old master engaged in some strange boardgame. From her expression you believe Marisa is winning, though you cannot be sure.

"Heya you two." The black-white witch greets you as she notices you and Alice, a mischievious smile on her lips. "Y'took a long time, didn't ya? Somthin' happen?"

"Man, holding hands as well -ze?" Marisa suddenly wonders aloud. "Don't tell me you two are all lovey-dovey all of a sudden?" The forest witch adds with a sly smile.

Strangely Alice remains completely unruffled by Marisa's inquiry, instead answering in a complete deadpan. "If you don't want to hear the truth, I suppose I won't tell."

"Whaat? Really? Really-truly -ze?" After a moment's apparent disbelief Marisa seems genuinely unsure whether the dollmaker is pulling some elaborate joke or not, and in confusion the forest witch gives you a pleading look.

Out of the corner of your eye you can see a mischievious look on Alice's face, her smile cunning and slightly amused. You don't know if she was trying to call forth this reaction from the black-white, but the dollmaker seems to enjoy it nonetheless.

But in any case, you should decide what to do, as Marisa seems to grow more and more annoyed by the moment.


[ ] If she wonders, you shall answer. Simply tell her what happened.

[ ] What do you have to hide? Announce it true and clear, so that all in the nine worlds may hear what has passed.

[ ] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.
>> No. 17907
[x] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.

We should let Alice have her fun.

>>17890

Well she was never lacking in that area; not overly curvy but no way small.

This update gave me a warm fuzzy feeling.
>> No. 17908
[x] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.
>> No. 17909
[X] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.
>> No. 17911
[x] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.
>> No. 17912
SUPERB.jpg

[x] What do you have to hide? Announce it true and clear, so that all in the nine worlds may hear what has passed.
>> No. 17914
[x] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.
>> No. 17926
[ ] If she wonders, you shall answer. Simply tell her what happened.
Marisa loved us (him) so she may freak out if Alice keeps on teasin'
And we (he) needs Marisa now more than ever, both as a friend and as a partner.
>> No. 17927
[x] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.
>> No. 17931
>>17926

I recall Norseman saying in a earlier thread, MAlice is only possible if we manage to figure how what forms the unusual friendship they have.

I wonder if it's too late to start doing that or not.

How ironic that it's Marisa that's more of a tsundere than Alice (if you buy all that fanon crap)

I think if there's remotely anyone seeking a Yukari or Ran route, HLA's the place to go.

But to be honest just a nice Alice route end in this section would be a great boon.
>> No. 17947
>>17931
To be honest, I don't think it's too late. In fact, I believe that RIGHT NOW is the moment.

However... we have a good thing going on here with Alice and this story is so logical and its updates so consistent (compared to all others) that a nice, ARISU GOOD END is all I want for christmas. How about we don't take chances for once?
>> No. 17954
There are very few things in this tale that are too early or too late to do. In fact, I have several scenes planned that may occur at practically any point in the story (with slight alterations, of course).

And if you ask yourself, what do you actually know about Alice and Marisa in this story? I'd say that the surface is barely scratched as of now.


But in any case votes are tallied and I am writing.
>> No. 17955
>And if you ask yourself, what do you actually know about Alice and Marisa in this story? I'd say that the surface is barely scratched as of now.

Wait a minute, what else is there to need to know about them? What could they possible be hiding and we not know of?
Now you made me curious, but yes we need to focuse more on Alice after all. We kind of left that out in the past.
>> No. 17956
>>17955

He means stuff like the past between them, and why their dynamic is the way it is, he said earlier understanding this is the key to getting the MAlice end.

Remember that scene where Alice talked about vengence for her mother? (Hint: look up the plot for mystic sqare)

But failing that, we seem set on the track to an nice Alice end. (not over tsuntsun alice or pyscho Alice, but nice Alice; something that this board been needing for the longest time)

I think as far as Yukari or Ran end, I think that would have required Sigurd not to be such a vengeful guy.
>> No. 17957
>>17956
I had a dream the other night about this. We never attacked Ran-we just explained the situation over a cup of tea and asked her what she was going to do.
Of course, she decided to fight for her master. We convinced her to left out Chen due to her low expertise and we told Marisa not to jump in under any circumstances.
So, at dawn, like two true spaghetti western heroes, we walked 10 steps and start showering each other with danmaku. Well, she did at least. Our hero started to run like a little giLIKE A TRUE VIKING SO MANLY THAT MANNOSUKE SHIT HIS PANTS IN AWE.
In the end, thanks to some weird Deus Ex machina, we were able to beat her, we treated to her wounds and we reminded Ran of her promise: Should she meet defeat, she will not warn nor assist Yukari during our ambush.
It all ended up with a delicious good night kiss for Ran and more hair ruffle for Chen.
>> No. 17971
>>17957
>I had a dream the other night about this.

You're taking things too far.
>> No. 17973
>>17971

Wait till he starts lucid dreaming
>> No. 17985
[ ] Remain silent. Allow Alice to handle this situation.


Only a man both blind and addle-headed could fail to see how this will end, and no wise man would let himself be the center of a quarrel such as those that the black-white witch and dear dollmaker can create. And regardless, unwise would it be to boast overly, for surely this truth is not only yours to share no matter how much you would wish to tell the nine worlds themselves and all in them of your joy.

Instead you remain silent, a glance towards Alice confirming that the dollmaker seems more than happy to take the lead in this matter. Gently she lets go off your hand and walks over to the table, taking the seat opposite to the black-white. Following her lead you join the others at the table, taking up a position between your dear Alice and the old master, who still seems pondering the game he was playing with the black-white witch.

"Truly Marisa, if you want to know that badly, you only have to ask." Alice tells, a small smile on her features as she leans slightly forward towards the bewildered black-white. "Politely, mind you."

"Whaat?" The forest witch again exclaims, her annoyment slowly fading, replaced by a slightly surprised look.

"You're serious, aren't you -ze?" Marisa asks, her expression still slowly changing as she begins to accept the idea. It is not long before an impish grin is plastered across her face.

"Hah, wouldja look at that -ze?" The black-white witch merrily laughs, then gives you a quick wink. "You're one smooth bastard, ain'cha Sigurd? Makin' that shut-in ice queen fall for ya in what, four days? That's somethin' alright."

"What did you say?" Alice slowly and softly asks, her voice cold as Niefelheim's winds and features frozen into a grim mask.

"What ya heard, doll girl." Marisa answers with a wide grin on her features. She meets the dollmaker's icy gaze without flinching.

"I mean, can't a girl complement someone?" Marisa innocently wonders. "After all, it's the fastest time I've ever seen anybody seduce you -ze."

"SHUT UP!" The puppetmaker yells, her anger suddenly breaking through her icy facade. With eyes shining bright the dollmaker slams her hands down on the table, a withering look boring into the black-white witch.

"Ya started it -ze." Marisa calmly replies, leaning back in her chair and meeting the gaze of the dollmaker.

Truly, this is a strange feeling for you. Little wish do you have to watch this quarrel, for ill is it when friend is turned against friend, and even less do you wish to see your dear Alice angered. But still a part of you wishes to remain silent and listen, for the black-white witch's words create a strange curiosity within you. Who else has the forest witch seen seduce Alice, you wonder?

But in the end, before this situation can escalate further, an unexpected source defuses it. There is a sharp clack as a wooden playing piece hits the board, shifting the attentions of all towards the source of the sound.

"Checkmate." The old master simply says, evoking a curious look from Alice and a shocked one from the forest witch. Marisa looks down on the board and her surprise quickly is replaced by astonishment.

"Eh? How'd ya do that -ze?"

"The Way is not to know what pieces you should move, my Lady Kirisame, it is to know what pieces to keep unmoved." The old one gently replies. Watching him speak is truly calming, almost strangely so, for few men can so easily calm quarreling hearts with words and wisdom alone.

"Any move you make on the board shall naturally produce a result that is known to you, but how can you know what result it shall produce in your opponent? What piece shall he move next, and what piece are you then forced to move?"

With these words the old master falls silent, his very presence filling the void left by absence of sound, strangely peaceful and strangely serene.

"Friend shoud not fight friend." You softly state, your words filled with conviction. Somehow you feel inspired, somehow you feel calmer and more focused than before.

"True it is that my heart holds love for dear Alice." You tell the black-white witch, evoking a blush from the dollmaker, and a curious look from the forest witch herself. "This is why I would see this quarrel ended. As noble ones in Odin's sight, shall we not put this matter behind us?"

"Right..." Marisa mumbles, then she half-timidly turns to the dollmaker and mutters a few words. "Er, sorry -ze."

"Ah, yes. I'm sorry too." Alice answers, her face slightly flushed, but also relieved. Seeing her like this evokes a truly happy feeling in your heart.

"In any case, I have to tell you all something." The dollmaker continues, determination returning to her voice.

"As you know I spoke with Loki earlier, for the purpose of ascertaining his plans. I do not think I can speak directly of his motives, but I should be able to answer some questions about him."

"What didja agree on?" The black-white witch wonders, her expression suddenly shrewd and calculating.

"I cannot speak of Loki's plans for the future, or of anything relating to the other gods he associates with..." Alice makes a small pause, apparently thinking of something. "Aesir I believe he called them. Furthermore, I cannot write down or speak the exact phrases he uttered during our conversation, but in exchange the spell made it impossible for him to lie."

This revelation evokes a sour expression from Marisa. The black-white sighs slightly and shakes her head.

"Sounds kinda waterproof. Hafta think about this one, maybe we'll find a loophole -ze?"

"Perhaps. But in the meantime, as Sigurd knows Loki the best, I believe he should ask me what he wants to know."

Alice tells you with a gentle smile. "I hope it will be of use to you, my dear."

You ponder this opportunity, for truly it should be taken. Your love has bravely brought it to you, and to waste it would be ill indeed. Knowing what you know, how should you phrase your question?


[ ] Write-in only
>> No. 17988
The logical step now would be to pile up questions that grant us some info but doesn´t break his rules.

Sorry, but the best I can come up with are some questions that speak of his past-the rules stop Alice from talking of only his future plans. If they just happen to be the same as his present schemes, too bad.

"He lied or hide something from me BEFORE your conversation?"
"Which were his plans before your conversation?"
>> No. 17990
A possible suggestion: "What does he know of Gensokyo?"

It's a neutral question, and it's a good idea to see what he knows.
>> No. 18005
I am generally bad at write ins, going to wait for someone to make a glorious write in
>> No. 18019
Well, there are no hard limit on the amount of questions you can ask. Whether you get an answer or not is another matter.

And besides, one answer can give cause to further questions, can it not? It doesn't have to be the write-in of the gods to provide some useful information, or at least a path to useful information.
>> No. 18025
>>18019
Heh, I don't remember any other time when an update was delayed due to the lack of imagination of the readers. Feels bad man.
>> No. 18026
>>18025

Sorry... well I'm going to try against my better judgement.

[x] What does Loki know of Gensokyo? (Finding out what he does know would be helpful and it's a neutral question)
[x] Did he say anything about my sword? (He might have mentioned it to Alice, and curious about what he might have said about a weapon that might be brought to bear against him)
[x] Did he say how such weapons were lost or stolen? (Just to find out how gods' weapons end up in the hands of two vampire sisters)


This is what i can come up with.
>> No. 18029
>>18026

Hm, I guess this wins by default. Still a bit odd that nobody thought of any other questions.

Anyway, writing now.
>> No. 18030
[ ] What does Loki know of Gensokyo?
[ ] Did he say anything about my sword?
[ ] Did he say how such weapons were lost or stolen?


For a moment or two you ponder what to say. Is there some loophole or trick you could use to avoid these rules? Would one as wily as Loki truly leave such a weakness in this agreement? This you doubt.

"Perhaps then we should not dwell on his goals, if that knowedge is sheltered behind spell-veil." You conclude, for other ways there must be to solve this puzzle.

"What then, my mind wonders, does Loki Laufeyson know of Gensokyo?" You ask, for this would be a good place to begin untangling the riddle that is the Trickster God's mind.

"Very little." Alice replies. "I did not ask him this specific question, but from what I could gather he believes this to be a country or realm of magicians. While somewhat accurate, this is not the entire truth, and I did not dispel this notion for him. "

"What then is the truth of this matter?" You wonder aloud, for well would you do to know what powers there are in this realm unknown to the trickster.

"There are other powers than magic alone. Faith also grants power in Gensokyo." Alice answers you, "As do innate abilities, such as the physical strength of the Oni or the supernatural powers of Vampires."

"I have heard of this faith." You answer, for did not the old master tell you something similar? "Yet perhaps Loki has not, for never have I heard tales of the Aesir relying upon faith. This is not the way of the north."

"That does seem reasonable." The dollmaker replies, thoughtful in voice and countenance. "Other gods have sought entry into Gensokyo before, but unlike them Loki showed no sign of interest in the gathering of faith."

"So it may be, though of powers possessed by blood the trickster knows well. He is of Jötun-blood, and great is the strength of giants." You calmly reply. For now it seems as if this faith they speak of is the only power that could catch the trickster unaware. This is something to remember.

"Don't reckon that'd help him much -ze." The black-white witch pipes in. "Might know that a little girl ain't always just a little girl, but he won't know what Oni or the Scarlets are before they hit 'im, can he?"

"I wonder." Alice replies to the grinning witch, "He has been quite cautious so far, hasn't he?"

"In fact, I wonder about that man." The dollmaker continues, her voice and expression . "It's strange, but I can understand him somewhat. He is not necessarily malevolent. He certainly may be dangerous, but he did not seem to seek to harm others for its own sake."

"Is that so -ze?" The black-white witch suddenly seems thoughtful as she speaks, "So he might not be all bad then?"

"Perhaps he is not," You concur, "For Laufey's Son has often done deeds both ill and good, though the tricks of his are seldom welcome."

Perhaps not indeed,though your own words they were, you cannot trust them fully. Somehow you feel that there is something behind Loki's actions, something greater perhaps, or some goal other than the one you have heard him reveal.

"Then I would know if Laufey's Son spoke of my blade?" You ask, for little reason is there to linger on the previous subject. Rather you would well wish to know if your own blade was spoken of, for surely he would mention it if it held power to help or harm him.

"Your sword? No, not that I can recall." Alice answers you after a moment's thought. "He only spoke of two weapons as far as I know."

"Which ones, dear Alice, can you answer this?" You immediately ask, for while you feel you know the identity of one blade already, the name and tale of the second are unknown to you.

The dollmaker opens her mouth to answer you, yet no sound is heard. A slight look of surprise flashes over her features, swiftly gone and replaced by a slightly annoyed expression.

"No. It seems I cannot." Alice concludes. "I'm sorry."

"If you cannot, then are they not arms of the Aesir?" You wonder aloud, for this seems sound in light of Loki's conditions. "Else they are vital to his plans, and what blades but far-famed ones forged in Nidavellir's bosom could be of interest to one such as Laufey's son?"

"Yeah, that sounds right -ze." Marisa answers you, a wide grin spreading on her features. "Yer pretty sharp sometimes."

Emboldened by this support, you decide to continue this train of thought.

"Did he then speak of how those arms were lost? Were they stolen, or were they bought, perhaps found by strange chance or given by hooded wanderer?"

"I cannot say." Alice replies with an apologetic look. You feel slightly bad as you watch her, for ill is it if she feels guilt for something outside her own control.

"Do not blame yourself, my dear Alice," You gently answer, "If fault there is, it is mine for asking ill questions."

The dollmaker shows you grateful smile in reply, mirrored by little Shanghai who floats over and gives you a small hug.

"Anyway, any of this ring any bells -ze?" The forest witch suddenly wonders while she rolls her eyes at this display of affection. "Otherwise ya should ask doll girl more questions. We ain't got much to go on here -ze."

True she speaks, witch of wildling wood, for while you have found some grains of truth, you are far from satisfied with these meager scraps of knowledge.


[ ] Ask further questions (specify)
[ ] Ask the others what they think of what you have learned.
[ ] You feel as if you have found as much knowledge as yo ucan already. No more questions do you have.

---

Regarding this question session, you should feel free to ask anything. The world won't end because you ask the wrong questions, so fire away. You might even stumble upon something vital.
>> No. 18034
Alright this is what I've got. Of course, it needs to be 'translated' to viking but what the hey.
Also, since this time we're just asking questions, all relevant inquiries should be added, instead of voting for just one post. The more the merrier, no?

-Did he (for the Trickster) said anything about Youki? - He seemed to believe that he was hiding something.
-Did he said anything about Youmu? - Since the legendary lances of the scarlet sisters are out, her youkai-forged swords might be what he was looking for. Kind of a long shot though, but I don't know any other weapons.
-Did he mentioned the Youkai Demon of Gaps or the Shrine Maiden of Paradise? - Being the two most powerful entities in this realm, they may be relevant... yeah, I'm shooting at the moon here as well.
-Did he mentioned Gensokyo's current gods? - Probably no good, but we have to try. After all, the only thing we know about his objective is that he wants to use the faith to take over Gensokyo's current gods and religions.
-Why is Shanghai so adorable? - Well, she is. Also, mood breaker.
-Why the 'Dollmaker of Bucarest?' Do they have a doll fetish there or something?
-Can you think of any questions Marisa?
-Can you think of any questions Youki?

Of course, if Alice states that she can't answer a question, then that means that the topic was relevant to his plans and should be remembered. Like that VN said, "We can't shoot a single arrow and expect it to hit the target, we have to fire a barrage" Each answer, whatever it may be, drives us closer to the truth.
>> No. 18037
>>18034

He doesn't know much about the current gods at all; just Yukari. The last post explained that faith is something that he overlooked. Perhaps he might have overlooked Reimu's role in things.

But the rest of the questions sound rather nice.
>> No. 18041
[x] >>18034

put a [x] before it, form the sentences in your mind and it is good to go.
>> No. 18047
[ ℤℯ] >>18034
>> No. 18050
[x] >>18034

But there were answered already (Loki doesn't know much of anything about Gensokyo)
>>Did he mentioned the Youkai Demon of Gaps or the Shrine Maiden of Paradise? - Being the two most powerful entities in this realm, they may be relevant... yeah, I'm shooting at the moon here as well.
>>Did he mentioned Gensokyo's current gods? - Probably no good, but we have to try. After all, the only thing we know about his objective is that he wants to use the faith to take over Gensokyo's current gods and religions.
>> No. 18052
>>18050
So, that post, minus those two?
Sounds good to me.
>> No. 18103
[ x] >>18034
>> No. 18112
Right, calling the vote and commencing writing.
>> No. 18125
File 125377045456.jpg - (222.76KB, 715x704, 001-jh881223_phpressss.jpg) [iqdb]
18125
>>18112
Yay!
>> No. 18137
This update resists me something fierce. Should be finished tomorrow though.
>> No. 18156
This is apparently a bad week for inspiration.

In order to produce an update that's not shit, an additional day may be required.
>> No. 18199
File 125409634822.jpg - (452.93KB, 1050x900, alice25.jpg) [iqdb]
18199
Right, this took a bit longer than expected. Sorry about that.

I also took the executive privilege of removing the question about Youmu due to excessive use of metaknowledge. As far as Sigurd knows, her swords are mundane and thus I could find no plausible reason for our hero to ask this question. Wouldn't have led to anything anyway, so nothing of value was lost.

---

[ ] Did Loki say anything about Youki?
[ ] Did Loki mention the Youkai Demon of Gaps or the Shrine Maiden of Paradise?
[ ] Did Loki mention Gensokyo's current gods?
[ ] Why is Shanghai so adorable?
[ ] Ask Marisa and Youki if they have questions.


But what threads should you tug next to untangle this knot? Perhaps you are again searching in the wrong place, for if you wish to grasp the mind of Laufey's Son, should you not focus on those he may or may not know of in this realm? His plans may become clearer if you were to ask who he has spoken of to the dear dollmaker and compare this lore with your own knowledge, for ever do schemes like Loki's rely upon others to come to their fulfilment.

"Did he share any thought about old master Youki?" You wonder, for the trickster's earlier words still are fresth in your memory. "For to this song-smith, sly-god seemed shaken, aye, almost anxious when he spoke of him."

"No. Though now when you mention it, I get the feeling that he avoided the subject." Alice replies, her look thoughtful though slightly grim as well. You share her feelings, for never is is pleasant to realize how Loki has twisted and tangled words and wit to his own ends, this you well know.

Your gaze turns to the old master, yet he seems as serene as always. After all eyes around the table have watched him for a few long seconds it becomes apparent that he has nothing he wishes to tell at the moment.

Another track would perhaps be better then. You have wondered for a time why Loki wished to aid you in the slaying of the Lady of Borders, whether the trickster tried to shatter star-spanning spellwall or not. To bring clarity into this matter you speak, for now you can find knowledge true.

"Then what of the Daemon of Gaps or the Divine Maiden of this land? Did the trickster mention either?"

"Only Yukari. He does not seem to know about Reimu at all." Alice tells. "And he does not seem to understand the true significance of Yukari either, only that she is very powerful and that she is hard to kill. But it seems that he has some kind of history with her, either directly or indirectly."

"Thus he did not know what the slaying of the daemon of borders would do." You conclude, for now you know enough to rule out this possibility that has haunted you for a time. "And then we know his goal was not to destroy this realm through that deed."

Though if he wishes not to destroy it, does it not make the other goal he revealed more likely, the great war between Asgard and Gensokyo thet the trickster claimed was coming? Knowledge thus brings you tidings ill.

"And as he knows little of this realm he did not mention the gods of Gensokyo?" You ask, mostly to confirm this fact, for little doubt so you have what the answer will be.

"No." Alice simply answers. "He made no mention of them."

You nod in reply, her words containing no surprise. Your mind wanders for a while, for there still is something to be found among these meager facts. Loki seeks his wand of wounding, this you know, yet perhaps another weapon as well, one still unknown to you.

And why does he seek it? To gain greater power, and thus to aid him in bringing war unto Gensokyo, war so that the Aesir can claim this land? If he knows this only as a land of beasts and sorcerers this would be likely, but if he does not know there are gods here, aye, if he knows so little of this land, would not this plan be truly foolhardy? Would truly Odin, Lord of War and Wisdom, do battle against foes he knew nothing about?

Indeed, this is only one of the lingering questions that this tangled realm and the Fire-God creates in your mind.

Many you have, serious and trivial yet few answers. You watch the thoughtful expressions of the black-white witch and the dear dollmaker, but it seems that they have as little luck in their ponderings as you. Of all around the table only the old master seems serene, aye, even little Shanghai's brow is furrowed in thought as the doll tries to ponder this mystery.

"Why is Shanghai so adorable?" You wonder, only half-realizing that you say this aloud until a few moments after the words have left your lips.

"S-Sigurd, why would you ask something like that?" Alice answers, blushing slightly while she speaks. The little doll herself seems positively scandalised, her face flushed deep red as she tries to avoid your gaze.

"I... well, it's a bit complicated. I mean, why she acts like she does, not... that other thing." Alice then mumbles, "It's not something I usually talk about."

"Jeez, tell 'im how it is already -ze." Marisa interjects while giving both you and Alice a strange look. "Or maybe we should get back on track?"

While you do feel curious, you also feel quite foolish for asking such a strange and unrelated question. Perhaps you should indeed get back on track?

"No, it won't take a long time and I believe I should tell you, dear Sigurd." Alice sharply says, halting your imminent apology for wasting precious time. But even though she tries to sound determined, the hesitation is there in her voice.

"Shanghai is unlike all my other dolls. She is linked to and animated by my lifeforce, and thus a repository for the animus of the transcendent nature I possess." Alice then tells, though little can you glean from her words.

"What she means is that Alice pours a lot of her Youkai into that doll when she's not usin' it herself -ze." Marisa

interrupts with an explanation you come closer to comprehending. "An' that's why it reflects a bit of Alice's emotions when she's tryin' not to show 'em. There, can we get back on track?"

"Yes, I think that's quite enough." Alice snaps back. For some reason this upstaging has managed to annoy her even more than the black-white usually manages to accomplish.

"Aye, it was nothing serious, merely the mistake made by my tongue." You reply, for little wish do you have to upset your dear Alice further, for if it were truly important she would surely tell you more herself one day.

Though even so, you must admit that this knowledge has made you curious indeed.

"I can not think of other questions for now, but ever is one mind less sharp than three. Black-white Marisa, wise Youki, I ask you if you have questions or thoughts I have not found?" You then tell, banishing your earlier thoughts from your mind. Your own wits seem to be at their end, and no shame is there in seeking the advice of others.

"Hm, well, I dunno really -ze." Marisa says, her voice slightly unsure and hesitant. "Maybe we should just assume that Loki's up to no good, an' let Reimu sort him out -ze?"

"The O-Asura-dono you call Loki is not what he seems." The old master simply and suddenly comments, taking an long sip from his cup after these words.

"What'cha mean -ze?" Marisa wonders, then her grin returns even wider than before. "I knew he was hidin' somethin'. Maybe he's really a good guy then?"

"Perhaps he is not what he seems, but if we do not know what way, does this knowledge do us any good?" Alice tells, her voice growing slightly more animated. "What if we are overthinking this matter?"

"Nah, don't think so." Marisa replies. "Hafta think long an' good 'bout stuff before goin' off all half-cocked -ze."

"Would you like some more tea?" The old master gently but suddenly asks of the black-white witch.

"Huh? Well, why not?" Marisa replies, apparently slightly confused by this question.

The old one does not reply with words, rather he picks up the pot and begins to pour tea into the cup of Marisa. It fills, then spills over the edge and down onto the saucer.

"Hey hey, I get it already." The black-white yells as the liquid almost starts to run down onto the table. "Ya don't hafta drench the table."

"Why not?" Youki calmly replies, though he does halt his pouring of the tea before the saucer is full.

"Cause ya're gonna tell me to empty my cup, ain't ya?" The forest witch answers with a confident, almost arrogant grin, "So that I can take in yer wisdom an' all."

"Or to bring a larger cup." The old one answers with a small smile flickering over his features.

To this the black-white has no reply, merely a surprised look followed by an almost admiring one.

"I tell you this Loki is not what he seems. Is he not Asura, is he not evil, is he not lying? All these questions are born in your minds when I make this claim." The old master calmly explains, his voice now strangely soft and powerful.

"All these conceptions of the one I call Loki are shaped by your minds. Experience becomes memory, and from that is born expectation. If I tell you he is not what he seems, am I not forcing you to challenge all of these?"

It is strange, but Youki's question strikes a chord somewhere within you. Much of what Loki has said and done seems strange somehow. Is he what you have expected? Is he what you have remembered from the tales of old, and have you experienced the same character as your memory described?

"Thus you wonder about his motives and his plans, about character and whether the mask he shows is the face" The old master continues, his voice now filled with almost supernatural calm.

"But is there not one conception that you have not challenged?" The old master softly says, his eyes sharp and glittering like the finest steel. "Is this Loki acting of his own will?"

To this thought you find no immediate answer. Instead you and a similarly confused foest witch turn to the dollmaker, hoping that she might have heard this matter from the trickster himself.

"I... don't know." The dollmaker says, her voice and expression still slightly stunned. "I didn't think of asking."

For a moment you ponder this, drawing upon all your memories of Laufey's son, all the lore from song and saga, every legend and tale told of him. Is his presence and actions here truly of his own will, or is there someone else hidden behind his actions?


[ ] Surely he is, for who could force Laufey's Son into servitude?
[ ] The hand of another do you sense behind this. Surely it is... (Specify)
[ ] You do not know, and unwise would it be to speculate in such a matter.

---

In case you didn't figure it out already this is another potentially game-changing point, so I would advise against picking one of the two topmost options unless you're sure you've got a solid reason for your vote.
>> No. 18201
Hmmm, going to wait if someone can come up with a write in, else i will just vote for what i have in mind.
>> No. 18202
>I also took the executive privilege of removing the question about Youmu due to excessive use of metaknowledge.

This is a good decision and you should feel good for making it.
>> No. 18205
[x] You do not know, and unwise would it be to speculate in such a matter.

I'm going with this because it's hard to tell what's going on... and what in earth could bend Loki to its will? Since while Loki is under Odin, it's not anything really absolute.

But as far as the story goes, I'll play it safe.
>> No. 18208
It is ironic that when I have time to write, there is a lack of votes, and when votes are plentiful I have other stuff to do.

Maybe I've brought this upon myself though? Am I perhaps being too obscure?

Time will tell, I guess.
>> No. 18209
>>18208
[ ] You do not know, and unwise would it be to speculate in such a matter.

Lately there is just a lack of votes in your story. I don't know why, but it is sad.
>> No. 18211
>>18208

Lately the votes are too difficult/important, and since I have no clue as to what to vote for I abstain rather than voting for an eventual bad end.
>> No. 18212
>>18208

It's hard to vote on important decisions. We don't want to lock ourselves into a SAD/BAD end.
>> No. 18213
>>18212

I think only the top two options are risky the third seems to be the safest choice.
>> No. 18214
Well, I can reveal that there will be no locked-in and railroaded SNOWFIELD END to this tale no matter how you vote. All BAD/SAD ends are direct and immediate consequences of a specific choice you make.

Of course voting for an incorrect option will have ill consequences, for such is the way of life, but nothing gamebreaking.

And I'd like to give a hint somewhere about here, but unfortunately any tips would give everything away. So for the sake of suspense I don't, except for the universal ones of knowing your norse mythology and looking up earlier stuff. The answer is within the word-weave, as it always is.
>> No. 18215
I'm gonna choose one of the first options, but It'll take time to re-read the 13th threads.
You should use the time to write some general stuff or simply take it easy.
>> No. 18223
Well, since it was requested and all, I guess I'll wait for a day or so in case someone is still composing some sort of epic write-in.
>> No. 18235
Hm, what aboiut Odin and the sign we've had of his presence in Gensokyo? The crows, the dreams...what if Loki is just preparing things for his arrival?
>> No. 18239
Well, people vote please. Even if you are afraid something might happen, at least let your choice be heard instead of doing nothing.
Or just create a write in, even if it is not that good, just voice your opinion.
>> No. 18241
[X] The hand of another do you sense behind this. Surely it is the allfather, the one eyed god, Odin.
voting for the sake of voting.
>> No. 18243
>>18235
Still sticking with the "Do not speculate option" since even if Loki was serving Odin, he couldn't bend Loki to his will THAT perfectly.
>> No. 18244
[x] You do not know, and unwise would it be to speculate in such a matter.
>> No. 18245
>>18243

There sill is the question of how did Loki obtain a powerful sorery that only Odin can use. But then again, Odin himself said he won't run from Ragnarok.

[ ] Surely he is, for who could force Laufey's Son into servitude?
>> No. 18248
File 125428529088.jpg - (17.64KB, 192x144, lavatein.jpg) [iqdb]
18248
>>18235
Odin? come now, don't be silly. It can't possibly be the man who our hero believes in the most and therefore, the strongest Nordic god on a realm where faith equals power.

Besides, it's not like there's anything that indicates his presence. Y'know, besides those two ravens, Huginn and Muninn, whom, along with the spear, are the most notorious symbols of the allfather. I did wonder why such a clear sign was given to a single warrior back then...
In one of the older tales, both Loki and Odin where the same person. Although they aren't, the influence that the latter has on the first is undeniable.

Now now, all criminals need a motive, what would be his?
>"And high above, high in the halls of the noble slain, many brave warriors joined the feast of the fallen. There in Valhalla, the High Lord Odin sips his mead from a golden goblet, his one eye glittering with satisfaction"

What would be the logical result of a vengeance-driven Viking? Why was he given the power of mindless rage? Why does he need to use willforce everytime he wants to do something besides destruction and murder? What is he sent to wage war against one of the most powerful beings of Gensokyo, Scarlet Flandre? What would be the result of the disappearance of Gensokyo's barrier?

Conflict.

And what's the result of conflict? Death.Why would the allfather need that?
>"As men fear the twilight of their years, so gods fear the twilight of eons--yea, the inexorable fate of all things. Ragnarok."
>(...) "And so is Odin's fear revealed, fate fixed for all time. Thus is great god's doom fortold, by Urd's weave fulfilled. Fettered is Asgard's lord, in ending without escape." Vidur's voice drops to an almost inaudible whisper as he speaks, his earlier passion slowly fading as the tale turns grimmer and grimmer. Fate inescapable, doom assured, death unyielding.
Nordic gods were human-like. And what's more human than the wish to escape our own destiny? It is written that, no matter how many Norsemen he recruit, he'll be defeated. Then what about recruiting people from somewhere else? It might be a stupid idea but 'recruiting' mages with terrible powers like stopping time, changing history or controlling DESTINY seems like a good idea to me. How many gods could Yuka slain before her inevitable death?

That was just a dream? Odin is not present in Gensokyo?
>Naturally, the first question that flowers from your mind's soil is whether your dream was something more. Your instinct tells you that is must be, for few of your dreams have ever been so vivid, and in none of them did you meet the one-eyed god. And did not the old one tell you that your dreams were shielded from harm and intrusion? From what you have seen of his power and of the magic of Gensokyo, only the most subtle or the most powerful beings could avoid or defeat the enchantments that Youki could invoke. In this realm, where spirits and demons walk, and where men wield the power of sorcery as if born to it, surely only the most cunning wizard, one who wields the greatest magic and power could have succeded. And who could this be, but the god of Runes himself, one-eyed Odin?

At first, when our MC thought that Alice reminded him of someone, I immediately thought of Freyja: same golden hair, same blue eyes... wait, she receives half of the warriors' souls for Ragnarok, she must be the one! Wait, who receives the other half? Odin.

Who was that presence on the border?
>The presence slowly circles around the barrier, occasionally slowing down before resuming its regular pace. Perhaps it is searching for weaknesses? It completes a circuit before it finally stops and remains unmoving. For how long you canot say, for time requires a point of reference, and A vision, showing you many things in the blink of an eye. Serenity. Emptiness. A man seated beneath a beautiful tree, emanating inner strength. The power of emptiness.
A man seated beneath a beautiful tree?
>"In Norse mythology, Yggdrasil (from Old Norse Yggdrasill IPA: [ˈyɡːˌdrasilː]; generally considered to mean "Ygg's (Odin's) horse") is the world tree..."


I could go on, but I think you get the idea. It still is a terribly flawed theory, with so many weak points that even Kannon=Shannon starts to sound plausible in comparison. But it's what I believe in.
Sure, we screwed up when we thought Yukari was behind our powers, but that shouldn't stop us from keep trying. Norseman's story is rich and interesting for a CYOA and even if I'm wrong (which I'm probably am) I kinda enjoyed this little research.

[X] The hand of another do you sense behind this. Surely it is the allfather, the one eyed god, Odin.
>> No. 18249
>>18248
I am convinced

[X] The hand of another do you sense behind this. Surely it is the allfather, the one eyed god, Odin.
>> No. 18250
>>18248
It is reasonable to think that Odin sent him in a hunt for Lavatein because he knew that we'd also obtain his spear, Gungnir, in the process?
>Never would any spirit or giant from the north willingly face Odin, not even Loki shape-changer would take Allfather's visage for his own.
>> No. 18251
>>18209
changing to
[X] The hand of another do you sense behind this. Surely it is the allfather, the one eyed god, Odin.
>> No. 18256
All right, calling the vote for pointing the accusing finger at Odin himself.

Writing shall commence sometime soon-ish.
>> No. 18259
Hopefully it was the right choice.
>> No. 18260
>>18250

Perhaps but it could be Loki's trickery at work... since for all we know he might want to acquire both weapons for himself. (For all we know he might be resposible)

Well let's see how things go then... I wonder how long Sigurd would maintain his faith in things in the face of upcoming events, since this will most certainly mean that Odin will become the enemy, and we might actually side with other parties, perhaps causing Ragnarok itself!

That or I read too much into Norseman's hints of things being "Gamechanging" and it's just a overreaction.
>> No. 18263
>>18256
This is what I get for not voting.

Well, hope we're right about this.
>> No. 18264
>>18260
That'd be just as crazy as that other thread were, due to selecting the option 'all living things should defend their freedom' we caused the Scarlet myst incident.

That said, Odin as the culprit? Mindfuck.
>> No. 18266
>>18263

Of course, you should always vote even when it's futile, since a good explanation can change the tide.

>>18264

I hope it's an accurate statement since I don't think falsely accusing him would be a great idea.
>> No. 18277
>>18264

What other thread?
>> No. 18295
File 125443130072.jpg - (97.54KB, 516x800, odin9.jpg) [iqdb]
18295
[ ] The hand of another do you sense behind this. Surely it is the allfather, the one eyed god, Odin


You close your eyes and think. Pondering this thought you slowly begin to remember much that you have experienced so far. Laufey's son is wilful and wily, one that no man can bind to his will, and among all the gods of Asgard only two have his respect and obedience.

Yet the power that the Thunderlord holds over Laufey's son is a temporary thing, the fear of skull-smashing Mjölnir serving to keep the trickster in line. No, it is the other god who has sent Loki on many a quest and mission, and even when great Thiazi had stolen Idun's golden apples, even when aged and enfeebled, this terrible lord could count on Loki's services.

And you remember the great ravens, the divine dreams and the favour you have found. Who else could send wily Loki to this realm? Who else could see his champion even through the great spell-wall? Did not Loki himself tell you that his scheme was the same as the one of the High One? Was this the truth, or half-truth perhaps?

But still there is one thing that could be used to certainly know this secret's answer. You reach into your pocket where you had stashed it and withdraw the beautiful arm-ring that Laufey's son presented to you. Reverently you lower it to the table, taking the utmost care with this artifact. Keep your faith, he had said. An ironic message indeed had you thought. yet perhaps not so strange after all.

"Whoa -ze!" Marisa exclaims, intently watching and scrutinizing this golden treasure.

"Where'd ya get that?" She wonders, excitement entering her voice. "You can just feel the magic in it, that's some powerful stuff alright."

"It was given to me by Loki Laufeyson." You calmly reply, "Yet he told me it was a gift from another. Pyre-prize he called it, and claimed that no other thing had fetched such a price for him."

These words seem to evoke wonder and surprise in the forest-mages. Only the old master is unruffled, almost as if he had expected this.

You pick up the ring and hold it aloft, you watch the craftmanship of Brokk and Eitri, those hammer-forgers of old.

You watch it, and you know the price Loki had to pay, his scarred lips a mark of it to this day. You see the glitter in the gold, a reflection of the red flames rising from Balder's pyre. You watch this ring and you know its name.

"Draupnir." Your softest voice calls out, that name of lore anf legend, and you know the answer to this riddle.

"One stands behind Loki Laufeyson, aye, the only one who could bend that crafty god to his will. The Allfather, one-eyed Odin." You tell your companions. "This ring you see one of High One's treasures, Draupnir named, gold-dripper forged in Nidavellir's halls."

"Like a crafty kitsune the question adapts another form." The old master serenly concludes in response t oyour words. "Who is Odin, and what does he wish?"

You think for a moment, pondering this second question. But in the end, it is better to answer directly. No blasphemy is there in telling them of the High One.

"Odin, the High One, Allfather of Asgard, is the highest of northern gods." You reply, "Lord of War, Victory, Wisdom, Poetry, Magic and Death he is, son of Bor and shaper of Midgard and mortal men."

"Sure sounds like an important guy -ze." Marisa comments, a slight look of wonder on her features.

"Indeed. I now understand why you put such an emphasis on this Odin." Alice says, and she as well seems a bit impressed.

"This is so, my fair." You answer her, then turn back to the old master. "And what Odin wishes, old master I know as well." You tell him, sparking a slight hint of curiosity in his eyes.

"Foretold his fate is, for one-eyed Odin and the Aesir shall fall one day." You tell, voice calling out as this performance begins. "That final battle shall see the end of gods, that day of Ragnarok when giant and beast march on high Asgard and Surtur's flames scorch the world tree."

"Sounds kinda harsh -ze." Marisa comments, though you can see a hint of interest in her voice. "So what'cha gonna do then, if this Odin guy is so important?" The black-white witch wryly wonders.

You smile widely in reply, for this answer you have known since you were a young child.

"I plan to be there, O mighty Marisa, and test my mettle against the great lords among Jötunkind." You voice tells all around you. "For the valiant dead shall spend their days in Odin's hall to practise for that final battle."

For this statement you get an admiring and excited look from Marisa, accompanied by a wide grin and a whispered "Awesome -ze."

From Alice, strangely enough, you recieve a warm, almost supporting smile. Her eyes glitter with near-mischievious light as she meets your gaze.

"What an interesting future we shall have together." She softly says, and to this statement you can do nothing but smile widely in return.

"And what then does Odin wish to accomplish in Gensokyo?" Youki again asks, steering the conversation back on track.

"I believe he wishes to change the course of that final fate." You reply to the old master, for no other reason can you see for the Allfather's interest in this realm.

"And how does he plan to accomplish this?" He again asks. The answer to this question is something you are less sure of, indeed, if you knew not better you could swear that the old master's eyes contain something almost threatening.

In any case, this reply requres thought as well. Aye, a long pondering would be wise.

[ ] Certainly it is because... (specify)
[ ] You believe you know why... (specify)
[ ] No certainly, not even a plausible answer do you have. Thus you shall not speculate.

---

All right, this should be the last leg of write-in hell. Though I had not expected this to be so dramatic, rather I thought that write-ins would allow for more creative freedom. In any case, you're doing well so far.

And again, give this vote some thought. And remember your oaths.
>> No. 18296
>>18295
Give us a few days.
>> No. 18297
>>18296
Seconded. Another though one.
Although my suspicions lie on either

A-Using Gungnir's and Remilia's power to alter fate.
B-Using the souls of Gensokyans to increase his forces... although you can't bring to Valhalla the unwilling, now can you...?
>> No. 18298
>>18295

Well we're trying, we're not the same grade of write in wizards are you are, especially in stuff like that.

We'll try to but I think we might need to remind each other.

But we will need time for this, that's for sure.

My personal suspicions?

I think the task of the weapons could either be Loki's planning or Odin's desire to have his weapon back.

Things Odin could use here asides from the shelter:

The souls floating around in the netherworld.
Keine's history changing powers (But I don't think he really knows of that)

Just some suggestions for now.

But Norseman, you really do make us think
>> No. 18304
>>18298

>>But Norseman, you really do make us think

Then my evil scheme is proceeding perfectly.

But still, you're doing well so far. Though if you can't come up with anything plausible, there's no shame in saying that you don't know for sure.

As a hint, the thinking here should primarily be focused on possible consequences.
>> No. 18305
>>18304
>the thinking here should primarily be focused on possible consequences.
>And remember your oaths.
>if you knew not better you could swear that the old master's eyes contain something almost threatening.

Yeah, we need to be careful with Youki now, as he may become an enemy if we ally with Odin (which I'm aiming for). Also, did we ever promise Yukari anything? We also have Loki's weapon to recover too.
>> No. 18306
>>18304

The future events? I think the time has come for Sigurd to choose where his loyality lies... will he go with Odin and ultimately betray the friends he's made? Will he rebel against Odin, showing he's come to like this place? Or Will he decide to instead choose the Third Option: Trying to broker peace between the two sides?

I admit the last one is a long shot if Odin is aiming to exploit Gensokyo's resources.

But again this might lead Sigurd in completely new directions, since depending on his path he may end up with unexpected allies. Since again if Sigurd chooses to go against Odin in the name of Gensokyo, Loki might use this as his chance to change the scales of power.

In short, I suspect by the last write in (and Sigurd's faith) Odin's come into play and as of the moment we try to figure out his intentions or not speak at all choosing the safe option.

>>18305

Not sure about any promises to Yukari, but we do have that task... How that'd affect the future is anyone's guest. We will be most likely attacking the SDM to get those weapons (it's not likely that either sister would give up their weapon without a fight) And this might put us on even more of a shit list with Reimu and Yukari, even if our intention is Gensokyo's interest.
>> No. 18307
It's obviously related to both spears, but it also has something to with the MC... Yukari said that if we remained as we are we'd destroy Gensokyo.
>"If you remain in Gensokyo as you are right now, you will destroy it. I know you won't believe me, but you don't know what your gods are planning. I do."
Youki himself agreed and could only be persuaded to not attack us by making the oath we made... It's pretty obvious that along the two spears and Remilia's power, Odin wants us to provoke conflict into Gensokyo... all while giving him a free ride into this realm, thanks to our enormous faith.
>"It is your faith that is the danger. It is a bridge for all of your gods and devils. For them your soul is an inferno of power, even though you may not realize it yourself. Power enough for the old trickster to fulfil his last, great scheme."
It's time to stop being a tool and forsake Odin. Sure, it'll be a hard choice for our Nordic Hero, but it's either that or destroying the two people he loves alongside this wonderland. Besides, our bard already made his choice long ago:
>She would send you back? She would let you return to your homeland? Once you would have welcomed this, even felt gratitude towards the demon living between borders. Once.
>Even before you have asked yourself the question you know that you cannot accept this. You have made friends. You have made enemies. You have walked this land of legend and experienced adventure and danger like no other. And how much more could you not experience in Gensokyo? How many daring adventures? How many noble battles? How many cherished memories might wait for you in the land of sorcery and wonder?

Time to put your money where your mouth is, Sigurd.
>> No. 18316
>>18307

Yukari's remark hints at Loki's own plans as well...

It's very easy to imagine Loki going along with Odin's grand plan for the moment, then changing sides at the right time.

Not sure of if Odin knows of Remilia's power or how to get it since the most likely result of getting her spear is through her cold dead hands.

But the weapons and Sigurd's massive faith in the gods in addition to the shelter Gensokyo promises makes for a lot of things to aim for. Wonder if Odin went into Gensokyo and such how Loki'd be considered, since his trickery is a big part of Ragnarok.
>> No. 18322
File 125451895020.jpg - (152.67KB, 800x582, Odin_og_Völven_by_Frølich.jpg) [iqdb]
18322
I have to say Norseman, this Loki seems a pretty cool guy and I don't like to distrust him but... Christianity or not, he IS the god of deceit.
Loki would not bring destruction to Gensokyo without a good reason though...

"Think think think , forget about Loki's lies, what did Yukari said back then? I was on her element, defenseless and on the verge of defeat (verge which we crossed twice, if I remember correctly, so no 'misinformation because I knew you'd escape either'), she had no reason to lie..."
>"However you are also a vessel for strange gods, willing or not"
>"No, there are no gods INSIDE you"
>"Killing you wouldn't help. Rather the opposite"
>"If you remain in Gensokyo as you are right now, you will destroy it"
Vessel... in Gensokyo. The wonderland where faith takes form... faith...

[ ] You believe you know why... because you remembered Yukari's words.
[ ] By using faith, mine, as a trojan horse to enter this realm and by using my debt to the Trickster to obtain the Scarlet Sister's spears.
[ ] Why would he need those spears...? Wait, what did Marisa said back when you where planning the assault on the Demon's village? The power of Remilia scarlet was...to alter fate?

Although is possible that he's also seeking to capture all souls in this realm to increase his army, Sigurd can't possibly know of Hakugyokuro, the Sanzu River or that the Yamas' judging grounds are around the corner, so let's just not mention that.
>> No. 18329
>"And how does he plan to accomplish this?"
>how
>[ ] Certainly it is because
>because
>[ ] You believe you know why
>why

wut?
>> No. 18331
>>18329

I beleive this is an example of what we commonly call 'posting when tired', and the errors that often follow along with it.

In any case, option 1 should be something along the lines of 'I know it's by doing X, and I'm certain about it' and option 2 'It could be by doing X, but I'm not sure'.
>> No. 18334
Well, we somehow need a write in or vote now.
>> No. 18335
>>18334
Isn't >>18322 a vote?
Not a good one, but still.
>> No. 18337
Again, if you don't know there's no shame in voting for that option.

Anyway, I guess I'll call the vote sometime tomorrow. Until then I'm off to sleep.
>> No. 18338
[ ] You believe you know why... because you remembered Yukari's words.
[ ] By using faith, mine, as a trojan horse to enter this realm and by using my debt to the Trickster to obtain the Scarlet Sister's spears.
[ ] Not to mention what he could discover once he's here. In this land of fantasy, there's powers beyond what even the gods know, such as She that holds Gungnir, her power was to manipuate fate, am I correct?

Sigurd would know why he'd want his spear back.
>> No. 18343
[x]>>18338
That is a good rewrite of a decent write in. Good enough to gain my vote, at least.
>> No. 18360
[x]>>18338

okay.
>> No. 18370
Technically, Remilia's ownership of Gungnir still is metaknowledge. But we shall rework this write-in slightly and preserve its spirit, as that is quite usable.

Anyway, writing is commencing.
>> No. 18394
Update is swelling in size quite rapidly. This will take some time.
>> No. 18395
>>18394
We'll be waiting. And by 'we' I mean myself and dozen readers that watch this thread daily.
Those last two votes were necessary and interesting, but I'm sure that a lot of people are looking forward for more mundane votes (P/E: 'Which one of the puppeteer's holes should be defiled first')
>> No. 18396
File 125476231385.jpg - (459.53KB, 800x600, d86feef31bb1373e59602201a2cfc572.jpg) [iqdb]
18396
>>18395
>'Which doll, Shanghai or Hourai, should be defiled first'
>> No. 18398
>>18396

He is not Shirou!

Also I think it's a time for seriousness, not jokes or perversion.

And Sigurd is not that kind of song-bard. He's on the quest and pure love to do that too much. And that'd excluding his mega-vengeance streak.
>> No. 18407
>>18398
Joking!
With 'mundane choices' I meant 'choices without long-range repercussions, where failing or winning have immediate results, and write-ins aren't an obligation'
>> No. 18438
File 125500187548.jpg - (450.18KB, 600x727, f8aee90b9b0292e158d80225b2125e14.jpg) [iqdb]
18438
>Update is swelling in size quite rapidly. This will take some time.

Jesus, i can hardly wait. Trying to be patient here, but i fail.
>> No. 18440
File 125504150718.jpg - (135.50KB, 500x500, alice26.jpg) [iqdb]
18440
As some of you surely have noticed, I am having problems with this update. But I am working on it, believe you me, and it should be finished tomorrow.

Have some Alice as compensation.
>> No. 18453
[ ] You believe you know how... because you remembered Yukari's words.
[ ] By using faith, your own, as a vessel to enter this realm and by using your debt to the Trickster to obtain the Scarlet Sister's blade.
[ ] Not to mention what the trickster could discover once he's here. Perhaps these devils hold some other significance, for why would Odin seek something that would profit only Laufey's Son?


Perhaps you do know how old Odin has planned to avoid this final twilight. Or at the very least you believe you know part of the truth.

Did not the wily Lady of all borders tell you, when the two of you met within the void, that your gods pursued some

plan, and that this would end with destruction? Did she mean the shattering of this realm's spell-wall, or its conquest? Or maybe war and death brought to this land?

You know little of the truth of these possibilities, only that there is something missing from this explanation, for somehow it does not fit with what you know. Yet the memory of her warning has given you a start, and the memory of Loki's words within the garden of ghosts directs your thoughts towards certain conclusions.

"My mind, how much it may ponder, conjures only half-formed tale. Yet some things I know." You calmly reply to the old master, for tangled in truth is this thread of speculation, one that you yourself do not know where will end.

Be it to doom or be it to glory, this path is one you will walk down.

"Faith is a bridge, so have I been told, and if true then Odin's plan was to use mine to send wily Loki stealing

through the spell-wall. This was the first step of his scheme." You state, for this much must be true. Too many wise ones have told you this for it to be false.

"And Loki Laufey's Son came to my aid, lent his power to mortal song-smith. In return he asked for aid in recovering Lävatein, his famed wounding-wand."

"An' that's where stuff gets weird -ze." Marisa interjects, her expression both wily and thoughtful. "I even offered to help 'im find that stick, but he didn't seem to care much 'bout anything like that."

"Indeed, O witch of wildling wood. If Loki sought only his frost-forged blade, why has he not pursued this goal with all his might?" This you wonder, for as it was asked when fire-god was summoned, why would he not aid his own power to the venture if this was his only goal?

"Why would the wise and wily son of Laufey not, when granted passage into Gensokyo, demand his due and accompany this song-smith to his stated goal? True it is, ever true, that two fight better than one, and how could the power of Scarlet Sisters be matched by mortal man?"

"Yes, he obviously has something else in mind." Alice concludes, evoking an agreeing nod from the black-white witch.

You draw a deep breath and ponder your next words for a few moments.

"Thus we suspect hidden hand of Odin Gallows-God behind Loki's action. Ragnarok is ever on High One's mind, for what man would not strive against his doom?" You again pick up the golden ring and watch its enchanting glitter.

"And who else but Asgard's lord could send such a gift as dwarf-forged Draupnir?"

Slowly you shake your head in reply to your own question. "No, Allfather Odin's is this scheme. By using Loki's deeds in this land is how High One seeks to avoid Asgard's twilight. Aye, my own actions as well, I suspect."

But as you speak these words, something seems wrong. For how exactly will the quest Loki gave you help the Allfather avoid his final battle?

"Yet is there any profit for Asgard's lord if Loki found his wand?" You calmly wonder, a new thought now occurring

to you. "And if true it is, as fair Alice told, that Loki's knowledge of this land is slight, how could he know that his wand of power would be found within?"

"That does seem strange." Alice comments, frowning slightly. "The sisters are originally outsiders, though. They must have had some dealings with your gods before they arrived in Gensokyo."

"Indeed, for how else could far-famed Lävatein fall into their hands?" You reply, feeling as if you have stumbled onto something. For if neither Loki nor Odin know much about this realm, then must their plans not pivot around those they have met before and know of?

"The second weapon you spoke of, fair Alice, has it to do with these scarlet sisters?" You ask the dear dollmaker, now more confident than in a long time.

"I cannot say." She replies, a small smile flickering over her lips. You return it, for the flaw in Loki's condition becomes more and more apparent.

"Marisa, know you of any blade owned by the Scarlet Devil? Any arms of tale and legend held by her?" You now ask of the forest witch, voice and mind both eager, for this mystery is unraveling at last.

"Well, dunno. Sakuya has got her knives, but I dunno if they're anythin' special, and Remi's got her Gungnir. Maybe's that he's lookin for?" Marisa muses while scratching her head.

"You spoke the name Gungnir?" You ask of the black-white witch, your voice now very soft and cold sweat forming on your brow.

"Yeah. That's a big old spear Remilia lugs around." The forest witch replies, giving you a strange look. "Don't tell me it's really somethin' important -ze?"

"Forged by Ivaldi's sons, those famed smiths of old, named Gungnir it was, the spear of Allfather Odin." You answer her, feeling the blood drain from your face. How is this possible, how can it be? Who could wield Odin's spear, and who could have stolen it from Asgard's lord.

"Yet for one to wield the lance crafted in Nidavellir's famed forges, that war-bringer of old, who is not High One himself is unthinkable." You continue, feeling your heartbeat pounding in your ears as the enormity of this truth begins to sink in.

"And so a motive emerges." The old master tells, his voice now warm and kindly. "Like Indra's net, all things bound within this web are connected."

The old one's words ring true in your ears, for surely, if his spear was stolen, Odin would spare no effort in recovering what is his.

"Yet, if this is Allfather's will," You wonder, mind now flowing in another direction entirely. "Why did Loki Laufeyson not tell me this?"

"Indeed, if this is Odin's will behind Trickster God's actions, why would not Allfather on high command this song-smith to find the lance of legend? Why would Loki mention only his own blade?" The more you think about this, the more you feel that something else is amiss. For if it was Odin's will that the trickster served there is little reason behind his actions. And whatever he may be, Loki is no fool.

"Yet there may be a reason." You whisper, for understanding suddenly stares you in the face. Simple in truth, too simple perhaps, so obvious that you overlooked it?

"Many times has Laufey's Son spoken to me, and ever were his words strange. Trust not in faith and gods, but rely on your own power he told, and hidden he kept knowledge Odin's lost spear." You state, recalling this advice that seemed strange once, but now is clear as crystal.

"Laufey's Son acts strangely, so it may seem, but not if he wishes to hinder Odin's scheme."

"There are two men steering the chariot." Youki answers you, his voice approving and warm. "Two captains holding the tiller, two generals directing the army. This provides an opportunity."

"Aye, old master." You reply, suddenly wondering how much of this the old one already knew. His serene expression and calm eyes give no hint of the answer, and unbidden does the trickster's warning return to your mind. This old man is more than he seems, this you now clearly see.

"That the trickster would follow Allfather's command was a hasty conclusion." You admit, for now the pieces finally fall into place. "For he plays his own game, seeks his own goal, and this seems not to be the same as Warfather's will."

"Two goals huh?" Marisa wonders, a wide grin on her face. "Sounds like time for divide an' conquer -ze."

"Perhaps so, O black-white witch, for never were there a blade as perilous as wisely wielded word, no trap as deadly as hidden knowledge." You tell, not without satisfaction, for finally have you found a weapon to use against the God of Fire. If necessary, you quickly add, for if Loki himself seeks something else in this land you should strive to know what it is before acting against his scheme. Or perhaps, you now realize, you do not have to?

"Fair Alice," You say, turning to the dear dollmaker, "Does Loki's spell of silence prevent you from giving advice how to counter his plots and schemes?"

"I was hoping you would ask that." Alice answers you, her eyes glittering with barely suppressed satisfaction. "No, it does not."

"And thus, knowing what we know, you can guide our path when we deal with the trickster." You say with a wide smile, another weight falling from your heart.

"The Way is not perfect knowledge of all things," The old master comments while sipping his tea. "The Way is to know the limits of your own knowledge, and to overcome them with aid from others."

Now granted knowledge, not by inspiration divine or sorcerous spell, but by cold reason, you feel armed to tackle all schemes and plots. Hope, that highest of emotions, is yours once again, hope and confidence, courage and honour your path once again. With your spirit soaring you draw a deep breath and address your fair friends.

"Know that my oath binds me still. Loki's wand of wounding I shall seek, for honour demands no less, but never shall I allow any harm to come to those I hold dear." You tell them, words true and strong, for better to die dishonoured and shamed than to abandon your companions.

"Yet all noble men must heed the will of the Allfather, and ill would I break this bond between Asgard's lord and his mortal champions." You continue, for truly this dilemma tears your heart in twain. "And still we know not all about his will, how then to make a decision?"

"Well, isn't it simple -ze?" The black-white witch wonders. "Why don'cha contact him? We could probably help out too, if ya can't do it alone."

Her advice seems sound, yet you balk slightly at the idea. Is it for mortal men to call upon High One, to seek him to answer for suspicions you may hold? And did not the summoning of Loki end less than satisfactory? But still this is an idea worth considering.


[ ] Her advice is sound. You shall call upon Allfather Odin to hear his words and will.
[ ] No, for too dangerous has the summoning of one god been.
[ ] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.

---

Right, we're out of write-in hell. Don't know why this took me so long to write, but it did. Apologies for this.
>> No. 18454
[X] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[X] If needed tell them about Odin in detail.

I would rather not try to summon Odin, but we do need more wisdom regarding this whole mess. Asking Alice and Youki, and informing them about Odin in general, should give an educated guess as to whether the risk is worth it.

>>out of write-in hell

Even if I did a small write-in now:
Hooray.jpg
>> No. 18455
[X] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[X] If needed tell them about Odin in detail.
>> No. 18460
[x] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[x] If needed tell them about Odin in detail.
>> No. 18462
[0] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[1] If needed tell them about Odin in detail.
>> No. 18464
[X] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[X] If needed tell them about Odin in detail.
>> No. 18466
[X] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[X] If needed tell them about Odin in detail.

And there's bigger risks in trying to summon a god that hasn't popped up here in some form.
>> No. 18468
"YO! Odin, my nigga, how's it goin'? Yeah,yeah, me? Doing stuff and shit. Fine fine yeah. Yo, are ya plannin' some war n' shit over Gensokyo? 'cause that'd be bad, y'know? Nasty stuff"

Yeah, not gonna happen. Odin's just too dangerous.
Which, of course, means that we have no way to corroborate this theory that has popped up. Are we heading into a trap?
>> No. 18470
Next update should be in a new thread, we're past the auto-sage limit.
>> No. 18471
[ℤ] Ask Alice and Youki what they think of this plan.
[ℯ] If needed, tell them about Odin in detail.

I think either way, we're still going with "No" in the end, but let's see.

Sudden ADHD thought: Hey, do we get to sleep with Alice, now? In a literal sense. Sex too, I guess, but I was asking about the actual sleeping arrangements.

Unless we have to date her first.

...How exactly do Vikings go courting, anyway? Any son of the north can go nab himself a foreign girl for some good hearty rape while sacking a town, I assume, but how's it go back at home? Dinner and a pillage? Singing tales of her beauty? I don't know if they have the whole no-sex-until-the-third-date thing, after all.

I look forward to this possibly awkward night.
>> No. 18472
>>18468
I fucking laughed.
>> No. 18473
>>18471

Considering the fact that Reimu's on the hunt, any sort of outing would have to be postponed.

We may love her, but we hardly know anything about her. I'd stick to getting to know her better before doing it with her.

And who knows? Maybe she'll spring for a special dinner for us.
>> No. 18474
Alice and Marisa are the Ying & Yang: oppossites atracted by the most powerful of the magnetic forces.
Marisa is a countrygirl: An impulsive, bad mouthed, easygoing friendly brat with a loving heart.
Alice is city-sect: A calm, collected and methodic girl, loyal to friends, brutal to enemies, with a kind and loving soul.

To win both hearts, our hero must become nothingness: the alpha and the omega. A ruthless viking with a golden heart. A cult bard with a fiery soul. An extraordinary norseman with a loving mind.
>> No. 18475
>>18471

Interesting point but I doubt Alice is one of those types of girls.

>>18474

I believe the matter of their common past is a hint that Norseman gave us.
>> No. 18478
>>18471

>>How exactly do Vikings go courting, anyway? Any son of the north can go nab himself a foreign girl for some good hearty rape while sacking a town, I assume, but how's it go back at home? Dinner and a pillage? Singing tales of her beauty? I don't know if they have the whole no-sex-until-the-third-date thing, after all.

Arranged marriage was the norm, so the surest way to get a girl you liked would be to convince her father that he should consent to the marriage. Otherwise, might pretty much made right, so eloping or a good old-fashioned kidnapping were alternatives, provided that you could get away with it.


Anyway, I'm writing now but I won't be able to finish today. New thread should therefore be up sometime tomorrow.
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