It was rainy day in this village of a monster friendly state. As such the vast majority of it's residence were comfortably inside. Inside the town square however a bluish portal opened and from it came Doom. With a handy Monster Girl
"Alright looks like I'm here, lets check this place out." He said to himself. Taking a moment to place the book within the confines of his backpack Doom zipped it up, and took a single step before slipping and hitting his head on a stone. Though no injury was sustained outside of making the clothes wetter. Doom gave a stoic sigh "Great, starting this off right." Doom got up soaked and started scanning the area. "Alright looks like this place is big enough for an Inn guess I'll go there." With that Doom began searching for an Inn, what happens next?
The woman examined the gold coin for a few moments before shrugging and putting it into a pouch. Gold was gold whether it was the right currency or not. "You get your choice of one drink, one main, and a side of bread. The tables have menus, just make yourself comfortable and someone will take your order and give you your room number."
"Al...right?" She mumbled to herself as he did the odd gesture. The menu was very basic, drinks were either water, some kind of alcohol or blended fruit juice. As for a main, there were things such as vegetable stew, mutton, roasted chicken, and other meal options. Soon a younger, redheaded girl approached the table.
"Hello sir, what will you be having today!" She said with a smile.
(Another question, are we going with only MGE monsters or can we have both them and actual monsters?)
The redhead nodded, wrote the order down and looked back up. "Your room numbers five." And with that, she leaves to go put his order in. As for the man dressed in desert type clothing a brunette waitress approached.
The waitress took the payment and left Samir to make conversation with Doom and to also put in the order. There were also other figures about the place... Though it was up to them if they wanted to interact with them.
"Well for one if I told you I was in a separate realm entirely less then an hour ago. You may not believe me, but I assure you it's the truth." Then he continued "Regardless I know only what I read and am an adventurer at heart. It's my goal to explore this world's most treacherous peaks and foul depths."
The female adventurer would look towards where the music was coming from as the man was giving their order. After talking with the waitress he'd get her attention and start talking, laying out some papers on the table as the waitress returned with one tea and coffee.
As he followed them to the market he could see they were clearly getting prepped for traveling the desert. It was also quite crowded in the market, it was a fine day to go shopping after all. Slowly the two started to gain distance from Samir.
Samir: Damn it.......(has managed to keep track of everything they have gathered so far).......hmmmm, if they are getting ready for desert travel then I have an idea of where they will probably go next. They need something that they do not yet have and there is only one store in this area that sells it. (takes an alternate route)
Berlin and Samir would start heading through the part of town where more noble men and women lived, many more guards there... And then he heard a familiar voice. "So you are following us..." David spoke as he walked behind Samir. "Seems like your one of those unsavory types you spoke of, aye?"
Samir: Not at all, I simply find what you are doing fascinating. Singing only of one's own lone travels grows boring after a while you see. Yes, I seek to forge my own stories, but I enjoy witnessing the stories of those around me as well. Sometimes they intertwine to create an epics beyond compare.
Samir: Oh that is simply not going to happen. You see it is not possible for you to deny me what I desire for even if you reject me I will still get something fascinating out of you. If you lose your temper and begin combat with me I will write a verse about it, if you have the guards chase me out of town I will write a verse about it. Face it, you and your zan are interesting people who are simply fated to be a part of interesting things. Also, as a man who grew up in desert environments I notice that your desert survival plan has a few errors.
"I never said I was going to stop you from writing or getting what you desire. I just said to stop stalking us... And what errors? So far it seems like we've been covering all of our bases pretty well..."
Samir: Do not be mistaken, you two are doing a fantastic job for people not native to such environments but there are some things you glossed over. It happens to the best of adventurers. (proceeds to go through their provisions and list off a few simple but potentially deadly oversights in their survival setup........he even comments on the route they planned to take..........just how closely has this guy been watching them?)
"Most of the things you mentioned we already have. Though I'll admit, didn't think of accidentally falling pry to a Pharaoh... Of course, we just need to stay away from pyramids." He then let out a sigh. "Berlin is one smart lady and a willpower to match. She's got all our bases covered... I hope... Alright, enough chitchat, you want in on whatever we're doing. Right?"
"Ain't that simple as to just let you come along. Gotta make the cut, or at least with Berlin. To be honest, we've been needing more people on our team. Got competitors to say... And hell, just me, her and the world? That's bound to end badly if we don't have anyone else watching our backs, catching what I'm saying. Personally, I got the feeling your trustworthy. Got that sort of talent to read people. Berlin, on the other hand, you're going to need to meet her demands and please understand, it's only been me and her up to this point."
Berlin would have been waiting at the fountain in towns square with David. "Yes, and what business do you have with us?" She looked a bit annoyed, probably from David trying to convince her that they need a bigger team.
Samir: The abilities I have that you will find the most useful are my skills in alchemy and my ability to control soundwaves. I also have a degree in psychology but I doubt that part piques your interest. Anyway, tell me a bit about yourself.
Berlin looked over at David who shrugged and back to Samir. "You can learn more about me if I decide you're eligible to join our team. Whats the most advance potion you've made and where did you get your degree in psychology? I'm assuming it's the same place you learned to do alchemy..."
Samir: I studied Alchemy under Berg'inyon Do'Urden of the Underdark and the most advanced solution I ever made was a serum of reversal. I learned psychology in the Thayan School of Illusion. All students of illusion in Thay are required to learn about the mind itself before learning how to manipulate it.
Samir: I did not obtain complete certification in Illusion, that does not mean that I know nothing. As for my skill with soundwaves.......here is a small demonstration......(plucks a cord on his instrument and sends a shockwave up to a nearby bell tower that hits the bell but instead of hearing the loud noise they should they hear nothing.)
She looked up at the bell and back to Samir. "Well, you should have initially said you knew some... And what did you do?" As for the bell... Since they couldn't see the soundwave he sent out nor hear the bell it looked like he simply plucked a cord on his instrument and nothing else.
Samir: I can control sound waves. I can mess with their amplitude, frequency, and such, I can refract them and focus them, etc. And in a way that is impossible to describe to someone that is not experiencing it themselves.......I can "see" them.......for lack of a superior word. This command of sound is my primary weapon.
Samir: Alchemical explosives, poison gasses, and such are also possible weapons for me if the need arises. As for how big my cut will be, I do not care. I am just here for the memories. Give me as much as you feel like, it is not going to stress me out.
"Alright, we can walk and talk then. Let's go." Berlin said and started in a direction towards the desert. David decided to introduce himself first. "Well, the names David Strange. Born and raised in Oxford. Left home at 19 to become a treasure hunter and see the world." He said with a nod. Berlin than started.
"As for me, I had an interest in ancient civilizations and artifacts. I went to the college of Winterfold to become an archaeologist and pasted with flying colors... But... There was something missing to the job. Sure, I got to explore ancient cities and got my hands on remarkable artifacts... But the area was cleared out of any danger by the royal guard. I guess to say there was no thrill... And so I decided to become a treasure hunter."
Samir: Fascinating, As for me......Well, there isnt much more to say than what I have told you. I left my home in the desert a while back and I have been travelling ever since. I have been a few places. The Underdark was one of my favorites. So many stories to weave in that place. Just don't take any of your mamono friends down there as the fearzress will kill them very quickly.
"See Berlin, we didn't think to pick this up." Berlin simply rolled her eyes.
"Mamono is one of my least concerns-"
"Doesn't make them any less a threat." David countered. Berlin sighed.
"I guess... So far our threats Mamono wise are Apophis's, Ghouls, Sandworms, Mummys, and Girtabilius. Then there's the searing hot temperatures in the daytime and freezing night time. Oh, and the various dangerous reptiles, spiders, and scorpions... And bandits... And competitors..."
"Alright, well The Atlas is said to be a living extradimensional dungeon that constantly changes shape, creates beings within itself and at the end of it, it is said that a great treasure is being held that is unique to each visitor that survives getting there and then the winner will wake up in the middle of a giant crater with the treasure he or she has chosen, the dungeon now nowhere in sight. Only one book has ever been found that recorded the endeavor of one adventurer named Elis Woo that entered Atlas and survived. That happened about 300,000 years ago. His body and chosen treasure were never recovered for... Ominous reasons. In his book, he spoke of five artifacts that formed a map to The Atlas and that's what we're looking for right now, the artifacts. How I found the artifacts locations... Or I hope is that I went to the temple that Elis lived in and explored his room, searching every nook and cranny until I finally found a secret staircase that led to a large room and on one of the walls he painted a large map with each location of the artifacts. We're right now going after Epsilon which he says is the easiest of the five."
Samir: Oh I know.......but still, there is no denying that you two are dear to one another. You said she helped keep you in check and steer you in the right direction did you not? Well, that is just what zan do. Where would you honestly be if you were not at each other's side? (carefree smile)
"Actually Berlin, right now you would likely be a skeleton in a dungeon somewhere." Said Samir in his usual carefree tone. "Although begrudgingly, you swallowed your pride and acknowledged that you needed a third party member. How long then do you think you would have lasted if you did not even have your second to watch your back in the trials before this one?" He said motioning to David. "Most certainly you have encountered at least one situation before where death had its fingers on you but David intervened before it could take you away."
Soon night befell the group as they reached the desert. The temperature was chilly so the first thing done was creating a fire. Once done with that, David would start putting the tents up while Berlin got to work on some food.
Samir appears to spraying the tents with something.
After everything is set up they all sit down with their food and Samir as he said he might begins to play them a song. He sings a tale about his experiences in a massive forest he once travelled through. As he sings they notice the world around them appearing to change and soon they are in the forest. They can see the towering trees, they can smell the earth and wildflowers, they can hear the chirps of birds, and they can even feel the grass beneath them.
"Isn't this something, Berlin?" David said as he admired the scenery around them. Berlin though didn't look amused.
"He's going to attract attention to our location..." David would let out a sigh as he ate his bread. For their meal, tonight was bread and thrown together stew by Berlin which... Actually didn't taste that bad for what they had.
"Always gotta be a Debbie Downer?" Berlin would just roll her eyes.
"A little fire is more obvious than some giant trees that appeared out of nowhere. Got it." She said as she stood up. "I'm going to bed, one of you two decide who to take first shift watching camp. Also... What did you spray on our tents?"
"Alright. Well moving onto matters of our trip, it should be a few days before the artifact area. Hopefully, we find something like an oasis on the way. Be nice to refill our water if we can't reach Knox before running out."
"We will see." replies Samir as he softly strums his instrument. The sound of it is rather relaxing. The gentle and soothing music is heard by the sleeping Berlin as it causes her to dream; of what only she knows.
After he falls asleep an ignis appears from the bonfire that she was hiding in. "Peace traveler, I just want to hear your melody more closely.......Sounds so sweet seldom are heard out here." She says hoping to stay any potential attack.
"Just stay away from the tents.....trust me." says Samir with a chuckle.
"Relax, I did not intend to bother anyone......just keep playing please....."
The night would pass by quietly. If Samir requested to switch with David he would have obliged and stayed up the rest of the night. In the morning Berlin got to work putting out the fire and David was putting away the tents.
"Yup, another day of traveling." David said as he slipped on his back and gave Berlin hers. "Also, how far is Knox, Berlin?"
"It's about three or four day trip from here. We should have enough water and more than enough food to make it, refill, and take care of whatever that needs to be done." She said and started West, David falling behind.
"Well..." David said as he glanced at Berlin. "Do you wanna explain or should I?"
"I'll start. I was in the mountains looking for an item legend to be the crown of the Dragon King, Fanfir. I made it to the mouth of the ruins but was knocked out from behind and woke about later tied up. Apparently, unknown to me I was being followed by competitors and up until that point thought I was the only one after the treasure. Two were left to guard me while the rest went in search and the two were discussing what to do me. Let's just say that they had... Unsavory intentions." She then cleared her throat. "I was bound by rope and was able to reach one of my knives that I hid in my boot and planned to run for it until some sort of magical shot came from the surrounding woods and killed one guard and the other didn't have time to react before another shot killed him. That's when I met David." David then took a turn to talk.
"Before that whole thing, I was drinking at a bar trying to find my next big score when I hard one of those bandit type characters talking about how the company he was working for hit it big time and I found my next big score. He talked about how a woman was sticking her nose where she shouldn't and that she'll do all the work, leading them right to it. Catching my attention I followed the guy until he was alone and made him talk. From there I pretty much tailed Berlin and the other bandits." Berlin then spoke up.
"After taking out the guards he was deciding what to do with me. He ended up untieing and then started into towards the ruins entrance which I then questioned if he had a death wish since there was about ten of them and one of him in which he responded 'I came all the way out here and like hell I'm leaving empty handed. Plus, I'm not one to shy away just because things got rough.' and disappeared into the depths. I'll admit, I was a bit inspired by his words. I mean, part of the reason I became a treasure hunter was for the thrill and I proceeded after him."
"And so we charged into the ruin, luckily the traps already by the bandits." David said. "About four dead in total. Berlin was some ways behind me since I had a head start into the ruins, didn't even know she decide was following behind. Soon I made it to the main chamber where gold coins covered the floor and at the far end of the wall a skeleton sat upon a diamond-encrusted throne and on his head was the crown. Before they could get too close to it I ran in and held up my rifle, telling everyone to stay where they are. One attempted to draw his sword in which I blasted his head. Now, my rifle can only fire once before needing to be reloaded but they didn't know that. All they knew is that it could kill really fast. This was before rifles went into mass production. Anyways, back to the story. I held them at gunpoint trying to figure out where to take this situation until I heard footsteps running up behind me. Thinking it was another bandit I quickly turned around to defend myself only to see Berlin and while I was distracted was tackled by one of the bigger bandits into a pile of gold. I struggled with him for a few him for a few moments before he stabbed by side with a knife. Luckily I was able to get my hand on a nearby goblet and smash his head in a couple of times though I twisted my ankle..." He then let out a sigh.
"While he and the bandit struggled I picked up his rifle and tried using it... But I didn't know how to reload." She sighed and rubbed the back of her head a bit. "One of the bandits then decided to take the crown which activated another trap. Part of the ceiling came down on him and three others, crushing them. The whole ruin was collapsing. I was about to run out of there before noticing David struggling to lift the body off of himself. Deciding I owed him I helped move the body off of him and helped him out of ruins before it all came crashing down. I then patched him up and once again helped him to get to town. Feeling defeated and emptied handed me and him sat down at a table. While I was contemplating all my life decisions he reached into his pockets and pulled out two hand full of gold coins and made me an offer." And finally, David took his turn to finish the story.
"And I quote, 'Your smart, you figured out everything that led up to that treasure but you can't fight but I can. I don't know how to research and know exactly where treasure will be but I can kick ass and be slick if needed. So what do you say, partner? You scratch my back and I scratch yours?' and offered a handshake. Of course, Berlin was reluctant at first but eventually, I was able to wear her down." He said with a laugh.
Samir smiles as he notices Berlin's brief daydream.....his hunch about the two appearing to slowly but surely prove itself accurate.
"Oh where do I start? Says Samir to David. "I suppose I'll begin with a peculiar arcanist I met once who could create objects made out of pure energy by focusing his willpower. He was a pleasant but eccentric man......absolutely obsessed with the color green. He said it represented willpower."
"Then there was this adventuring party I encountered on the road one day. They were a motley group consisting of a human, a dwarf, an elf, and two little halflings. The finer details of their goal I was unfortunately unable catch ......something about throwing a cursed ring into a volcano or something along those lines."
"Well, let's see... There was one really muscular guy with a scar over one of his eyes. The man was missing one of his arms but even so, he used a large broadsword like it was nothing. Really skilled with it, lucky he wasn't going after us." David said.
"There was also that tanned woman with the wooden mask. She had tattoos depicting the dark arts going up her legs and arms. Her mask also resembled an Oni from before the current Demon Lord. She was fascinating to talk to..." Berlin said.
"Oh yeah, her. There was something... Off-putting about her."
"Not sure... Just something was wrong." David said and scratched the back of his head with a bit of a puzzled look.
David and Berlin stopped and looked at Samir. "Uh... Something wrong?" Though Berlin was quicker to put things together, quickly looking at David and Samir, not knowing whether to back away or to stay in place.
"I blasted a sauce talking Hellhound into a river when I was a teenager." said Samir with a smile on his face "I do not know if she ever escaped the current but if she did her pride was certainly damaged."
"She is probably still looking for me as we speak......assuming she didn't drown of course. Honestly, if she is still alive and still determined enough to track me down after all this time then I might consider just accepting her."
"Yeah, but I'd put Hellhounds a step above Jinkos personally," David said with a shrug. The rest of the day would go by smoothly without interruption. The group would make camp and have fish and rice for their dinner. Berlin and David would be sat around the fire, eating.
"Well, I hope she gets some rest. Perhaps I will play a gentle melody for her. I am unsure if it actually helped her last night but if nothing else it didnt cause her to wake and throw a rock at my head." He says as he begins to gently strum his instrument.
"Well, to keep from droning on too long I'll give you the abridged version. We were engaged, and she wanted to stop travelling after we were married and settle down but I at the time was frightened by the idea of being anchored to one place......so long story short I fled unannounced on the day of our wedding, leaving her to wait at the altar for a groom that would never arrive.....
"...That be nice." He said with a deep sigh. "Wish I could have had some closure." Stared up at the sky for a few moments. "Whenever you meet someone you take a liking to and they do the same, you get an image of your future together. Adventures, growing old, having children then have a comfortable and wealthy life..." He then reached up to the stars as if that life was just in arms reach. "But then..." His hand fell to his side. "It's torn away from you by the greed of others, leaving only bruises, cuts, and tears..."
"In love with a girl from a small town. Looked like a butterfly but stung like a bee. I was in love. So I stuck around town to woo her and I think it was working... I think. I talked into taking a stroll along a path that led up to a nice place on a cliff where you can view the sunset. After getting there I went to go get a gift that I hid behind a tree to give to her. A couple minutes after I heard her scream and I came running to see her struggling against some scumbag. Probably was trying to rob her. I yelled out, he looked, and... And he just shoves her. Shoves her right down the cliff and runs. I ran down so quickly that I thought my heart would stop and my lungs would burst. She lived... But she landed square on a big ass rock. Broke her spine and now she's permanently in a wheelchair. Adventuring was out of the question... But she was different after that. She couldn't look me in the eyes anymore... Or maybe I was the one that couldn't look her in the eyes. I still don't know. In the end, I left. " He then reached into his shirt and pulled out a gold necklace with a nicely cut emerald, probably the gift he was going to give her. "Honestly, I blame myself. If I just didn't push the idea of the walk..." He then put the necklance back. "One thing for sure, I don't think I'm cut-out for love. Though I can say one thing positive, I found that bandit..."
"You let your insecurities get in the way of love and you don't look so bad." He snapped but reeled it back. "Sorry... That was uncalled for." His face was then filled with remorse. "Maybe... If I found someone just right then maybe... But for now, the thought of love is sour. Hey... You should get some sleep. I'd like some time alone now... Please."
David assumed the person in plain sight was Berlin. He thought for a few moments about it before shrugging it off. In his mind, it would never work. He couldn't remember a single time he and Berlin shared an even somewhat romantic moment.
"I also went to another place that I am not certain was even apart of this universe. I arrived, walked around a bit, chatted with some very colorful people, snorted some green powder with a fellow called the 'Duke of Mania', and then......well....I dont remember much after that.....in fact I cant say I rightly remember what the place was called......I know it had the word 'shivering' in its name." Says Samir while rubbing his chin. "I also vaguely remember a 'prince of madness' and something about cheese....."
Although she doesnt say anything Samir has a pretty good idea of what Berlin thinks of him. She has no respect for him, and likely neither does David.....hell, no one really does....not even him half the time.
"Yeah, I guess it is." Berlin said as she looked around. "So how about we split up to find our needed supplies? I take part of the list, David takes a piece and you take a piece, Samir. It'll let us scout out the city and cover ground faster." Berlin said as she took a piece of paper out.
"Sounds good but Samir, wanna come with one of us? You don't mind, Berlin, right?" David asked.
"While it is less efficient, I guess that's fine."
Berlin would hold a clutch fist. "Why that little...!" She said audibly before sprinting off after her and into the alley. "STOP YOU, DIRTY THIEF!" She yelled after with the fury of a thousand angry Berlins. That girl should probably run faster... She could swear that Berlin's eyes were on fire with rage... Not literally, metaphorically.
(Well my characters are treasure hunters looking for a dungeon called the Atlas. My characters are Berlin and David which you might be able to find the images of them if you scroll to the top and look for links scrolling down. Currently they're in a desert city where a thief girl stole money from Berlin. Praise's charavter is Samir.)
David would give a shrug. "Oh well, we'll just have to figure out something." And walked off somewhere.
"I thought she was just some lost girl!" Berlin fumed on, not bothering to follow David.
Nefertiti would walk into the Desert city. Her main task right now was to find work and somewhere to rest, rest being top of her list. She came to an inn and walked inside, the patrons were simply drinking and laughing together. There weren't many Desert region Mamono besides a Khepri waitress and an Anubis bartender. Nefertiti sat down at the bar, her pet snake Naga slithered around her beautiful body, caressing her. "Excuse me, ma'am. What drinks do you serve here?" she'd ask, as the Anubis walked over. "Well, we've always got water on deck, but... If you're looking for something stronger. We've also got beer, white wine, and some cactus fruit drink" the Anubis would respond, wiping down the counter. Nefertiti would give it a quick thought before speaking again, "I'll take a cactus fruit drink." The Anubis would walk to the shelf behind her and pour some form of clear alcohol, and squeezed some cactus fruit juice into it before serving it to Nefertiti, "That'll be 4 gold coins, please" she'd say holding out her paw. Naga would poke her head in Nefertiti's coin purse and drop the gold coins in the Anubis' paw. Nefertiti simply exchanged drinking between herself and Naga, as they relaxed.