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SOTF-TV Mafia: Game Thread
VOTE SUMMARY:
Slamexo: 2 (The Sickness, JamesRenard)

10 alive means 6 for a lynch. A smidge under two days left in the phase.

Monochromatic Living
Ethan stated that he would ask Stacy out next time he saw her. It was enough to get Emily to smile. She really hoped Stacy didn't turn him down. Okay, yeah, Stacy was probably not the perfect date in a few ways, but Ethan was happy about the idea of going to Prom with her. That was what really mattered.

Ethan congratulated Emily on her date, and she beamed at him.

"Thanks," she said. "Miles is cool. I'm sure we'll have so much fun."

It was still hard to fully wrap her head around everything that had transpired. Life was just so much better than it had been a few minutes ago.

"I hope Stacy says yes, and I hope you guys have a great time too," Emily said.

Head Up, Heels Down
The remainder of the lesson went very well. Lydia felt pretty good about her performance, and there were no more scares. True, she got tired after a time, but that was okay. It had been a good day. She felt like she had accomplished something important, even if all she'd really done had been avoiding screwing up too badly. She beamed at Rory as he called her to the center of the ring.

The conversation was pretty good. Rory always came off as interested in her feelings about the lesson. It made Lydia feel like her input really mattered, like she had control over the direction of her learning. She was more than content to leave the incident out of the conversation. There was no need to upset Rory again, not when everything had worked out.

They got Jay untacked together. Lydia was about to say goodbye to Jay and Rory for the day, when Rory suggested giving the horse some time hand-grazing.

"I've got time," Lydia said, smiling. "Jay's been really good. I'd love to."

Lessons always ended too quickly, and Lydia was eager to cling to her time having fun for just a bit longer. Her dad wouldn't mind. He was just happy that she was so involved in something.

The Party Was Over Then, Too
"Sounds good," Steven said, getting the rest of his stuff packed, then heaving his backpack onto his shoulder. "And we can avoid any implications of crankiness."

With that done, he turned and headed out of the library, giving Mrs. Garvey a nod on his way. He hoped he'd get a good interview out of this. It seemed likely. Juliana was a nice, interesting girl. He was sure she'd have a lot to say. Then, it would be up to him to spin it into something worth reading.

((Steven Salazar continued in After the Battle))

It Was Just A Drink
The whole thing seemed like it'd traumatized Miriam. She'd gotten splashed a bit too, and now she was apologizing to Adam, acting like she had something to feel guilty about. That didn't sit so well with him. After all, she'd been apologizing to Miles, too, and Adam didn't want to feel like Miles, not for any reason. It was a struggle to stay cool here. It was probably for the best that Miles had left. Adam really didn't need to get busted for being involved in any fights.

"Hey," he said, trying to make his voice kind and encouraging. He was a little out of practice. His sisters didn't need much comforting these days. Still, it was pretty easy to slip back into the mode of interaction he'd used with them when they were all younger, "don't worry about it. It's not your fault. I mean, you're not the asshole who decided we needed to get soaked."

He took a deep breath and ran his fingers through his hair, adjusting it a little bit, moving it back into place. Good thing his jacket was waterproofed. Really, this wasn't anything to worry about. He lived in Seattle. Getting a bit wet wouldn't make him melt. He fantasized for the briefest moment about splashing Miles and getting a nice Wizard of Oz reaction out of him, but didn't let himself get carried away. He was, after all, still talking with Miriam.

"You can't take responsibility for anyone else, you know? I mean, I know I make enough mistakes for myself. I'd never stop apologizing if I worried about all the stuff everyone else does."

Magic Man
"Hey, Paris," Adam replied to the other boy's greeting, offering a little nod. Saying that reminded him that he'd always thought Paris was a pretty funny name. Sure, there were some kids with weirder names at Aurora, but Adam couldn't think of any others that had such strong connotations with specific things. Okay, sure, technically he was pretty sure Paris was a name for people if one went way back to the Odyssey or whatever, but for Adam it would always mean cheese, wine, mimes, and the Eiffel Tower.

Paris had offered to play and let Rosemary sing. He hoped she was good. She wanted him to play something by the Stones, so that was a decent sign. Yeah, there were bands that rocked harder, but the Stones were a classic, kinda like the Beethoven of Rock.

Then Veronica turned to Adam and warned him that things were gonna get kind of noisy. She sounded really snippy and passive aggressive, and that rubbed Adam wrong. People who hated music tended to also hate puppies, rainbows, love, and all of mankind. Adam didn't want to antagonize anyone, but he also wasn't about to let someone rain on everyone else's parade.

"I don't like noise," Adam said, "I love it. Guitar's art, you know."

He mimicked strumming for a second, the speed of his movements suggesting something pretty quick-paced, probably amplified and accompanied by screaming.

Then, because he just couldn't leave well enough alone, he called to the musicians, "If you know anything by the Stones, how 'bout 'Get Off of My Cloud'?"

Veronica probably wouldn't have any idea of the significance of Adam's request, at least, that was his hope. It was just a little private joke for the people here who didn't want to grind fun and happiness into a paste and wash them down the drain.

SOTF-TV Mafia: Game Thread
VOTE SUMMARY:
Slamexo: 2 (The Sickness, JamesRenard)

10 alive means 6 for a lynch. A bit under three days left in the phase.

The General SOTF Discussion Thread
Wow, I meant to reply to this weeks ago.

Nice people can be really, really tough. While I agree entirely with Kami in many cases, to be honest, perfect angels bother me just as much as random sadists do. Often, I feel like there's a need to make "heroic" or "good" characters always make the best choices in a given situation. It's really rare that we see characters who are generally sympathetic acting like horrible jerks. It's rare we even see them snapping at people. I'm not quite sure why that is; perhaps people worry that it could come across as out of character or could make the reader loose sympathy for the character? Either way, I get bored/loose sympathy for characters who show no faults just as much as I do with those who are nice only in their profiles.

I think the key is to understand a character's psyche. A nice character will still have things that set them off, and what those things are will vary from character to character. It's key that we understand why a nice character is suddenly being not so nice.

I tend to like reading well-written nice people. I get super fed up with "nice" characters who display the flaws I mentioned, though.

On "heroes": I think one of the biggest changes in SOTF's culture has to do with them. Back in V1-2, it seemed like the heroes were all very action-focused characters. Quite often, a large part of their appeal came from the fact that they fought (and usually killed) villains. This was even true through a lot of V3. In V4, though, that style of hero fell by the wayside. I can't think of any character in V4 with over three kills I'd really refer to as anything close to a hero. In fact, there's less of a need for a character to have kills to be taken seriously (well, players unfortunately still seem to have a bit of equated quality and quantity, even though often their reception indicates that that may not be such a good barometer).

In fact... does anyone think V4 even had any heroes, or do you all agree with Ivan in Endgame, when he said, "There are no heroes on this island."? I definitely think there were fewer characters I'd qualify as truly heroic in V4. I'll need to think to see if I can come up with anyone who fits the role in a traditional way.

Lucas Goodridge
This character has been abandoned at the handler's request. It is eligible for re-submission at any time, pending edits requested by the staff.

If you ain't gettin' drunk, get the fu-
Susan saw Mallory over at the ping pong table. It looked like everyone was playing beer pong, which struck her as an odd way to open a party. Usually, that stuff came when everyone was already a bit trashed. She was especially surprised to see Claire over by the table. The girl seemed like she'd probably be a lightweight. Well, whatever. Susan wasn't her keeper. Claire could take care of herself, and the girl seemed even less likely to go get knocked up or something than to get falling-over drunk.

The host, Joey, gave out a nice enthusiastic affirmation that Susan did indeed have the right place for a party. She beamed at him and flashed him a thumbs-up, before making her way to the snack table and depositing her contributions. She then snapped loose a can of O'Doul's, popping the top and taking a nice drag of the foamy liquid. The bitterness was very pleasant on her tongue.

Meanwhile, Travis had wandered over to Joey, and was asking something. Susan got close enough to hear that he was asking if he could smoke inside. Normally, etiquette would have dictated that Susan not chime in. After all, she wasn't the hostess tonight. She didn't exactly have faith in Joey to make the right call, though. He seemed like a cool, laid-back kind of guy, which made him perfect for most parts of the host's job. She didn't really expect him to say no very easily, however. He'd probably want to please his buddy, and that wouldn't be good at all.

"You should probably at least smoke away from everyone else," Susan said, hoping the boys wouldn't mind her interjection. "Smoke can really mess up people with asthma, and if someone passed out, we'd probably get cops here along with the ambulance, and nobody wants that."

Of course, Susan's motivations were not entirely due to concern for her classmates or the party. She didn't really care for the odor of smoke. Cigarettes were the worst, but pot and incense also got to her after a while. If she could catch a break from them tonight, she was pretty sure she'd have a much better time.

Taking a moment, she tipped her can back and drained it in a few smooth swallows. It was a skill that had taken some time to acquire, and she'd spit up ginger ale on herself more often than she cared to remember, but she was pretty sure it looked cool now. She wiped a bit of foam from her lip, then glanced back at the table, all ready to go and grab seconds.

After Practice
Susan laughed along with the other girls. She didn't worry too much about Iselle's driving. It wasn't like they'd ever been in a crash yet. Besides, she trusted her friends to keep her safe, and it wasn't like she felt like driving herself. She'd hitched a ride to practice with her mom, who was fine with her getting lifts home from the other girls. Susan had assured her that they were all safe, cautious drivers, and unless her mother saw something to the contrary, there would be no problems.

Iselle took a chair at the end of the table, and Kathryn sat across from Susan. Alda was next in, sitting beside Kathryn. She offered to pay up on their bet. Susan hadn't technically asked for anything in return for her win, just offering to pay if she lost, but she wasn't about to turn down a free drink. She told herself that declining would offend Alda's competitive nature. Really, she had no choice but to accept the Coke.

"You bet," she said. Then, because she actually didn't feel great about freeloading when she had a decent amount of money on hand, she added, "Anyone up for some appetizers?"

Susan was pretty hungry. She'd gotten a good workout in the cages, and she hadn't had a lot to eat earlier in the day, so a restaurant was the best place to be.

Then, something Andi said fully registered.

"Wait a second," Susan said, "Katie bailed? Why does nobody ever tell me anything?"

She put on a fake pout for a second, then laughed and said, "You can sit next to me if you want, Iselle. I mean, if you like B.O. fumes. I figure you captains must find 'em appetizing, with how you work us poor, lowly grunts."

Lucas Goodridge
Hey, Castiel! Sorry this took so terribly long; I had an exciting time with work this week.

Lucas' profile is looking better when it comes to amount of detail, but he still needs some work.

What is unusual about Lucas' appearance? Which hair color is natural to him, and why did he dye it? Why is his nose curved, if it used to be straight?

I'm having some troubles with Lucas having a blank stare, especially since it's for the specific purpose of disconcerting others. Why does he display this behavior? How does this affect him in normal high school life? How has he learned to hide his emotions so well? Why is this important to him?

Tattoos for those under eighteen are highly restricted and in most cases illegal in Washington State. They are also extremely expensive and take a long time to heal from. If Lucas is to have a tattoo, I'm going to need a lot of detail about how he got it (in terms of wrangling permission/taking a trip somewhere where it's legal and also of affording it; a full-back tattoo in color is probably upwards of a thousand dollars). Similarly, a knife scar is raising some serious warning bells for me.

Having a leg brace for a whole year that does not restrict movement strikes me as very unlikely. Any injuries need to be really extensively researched and described in the profile.

I am confused by your description of Lucas' birth and the animosity resulting from it. Why was artificial insemination required? Why did it cause tension? How did it affect Lucas' early life, specifically? Who made him less welcome at family gatherings?

You state that Lucas was teased for his hair. Why did he decide to wear it in an unconventional style? Why did he not react to taunting? How did he feel about being made fun of over it?

"College" is a term which is not applicable in the US until post-secondary education. Elementary school is grades K-5, middle school is 6-8, and high school is 9-12. It'd make things way easier if you could use that terminology, please.

What about history interested Lucas? Did he enjoy all aspects of it, or just the specific niche relating to the crusades? What about them captured his attention?

I'm having serious issues with Lucas getting assaulted. None of what you described would prevent someone from being prosecuted. The specifics of the attack are also bizarre. Why would someone get so close to murder simply to steal a wallet and a cell phone? Why not take the car while at it? What was the involvement of the police afterwards?

Similarly, Lucas' rage and attacking of police officers makes no sense. To be completely honest, the entire plot line involving the mugging and fallout thereof is massively over the top. I'd like it to either be scrapped or be made into something much more grounded and realistic, which will probably involve a lot of research on police procedures.

I also do not understand Lucas being transferred to Seattle. Staying far away from one's parents can be a very expensive proposition. Come to think of it, I'd like to know a lot more about Lucas' family. What do his parents do for work? Does he have any extended family? How is his relationship with his family? Specialized doctors are not so rare that he'd have to move literally across the country to see one.

Acting like Batman characters is evidence of serious psychological trauma, and, in conjunction with Lucas' experiences with violence, would undoubtedly get him into some serious psychological treatment. Once again, it's a bit over the top as well.

If Lucas missed a year of school, he would be more like 18 or 19, not 17. Also, there's no way police would ever separate a minor from his parents as part of a sentence, unless his parents were abusive or he was in a juvenile detention center. If anything, his parents would have to be more involved in his life.

Getting in tons of physical fights would get Lucas suspended and/or expelled. Attacking someone with what amounts to a piece of medical equipment keeping your knee together also sounds like a really bad idea.

Basically, Lucas is currently cranked up to eleven in terms of weirdness intensity. I'd like him down around a three. What we're looking for is grounded, realistic characters, people you might meet walking down the halls of a normal high school. I strongly recommend you check out the profiles I linked in my last post for an example of that.

What I want to know is all the normal stuff about Lucas. I want to know what kind of kid he is, what he likes doing, who his friends are. I also want him to be a kid with normal stuff about him. I'd like the unrealistic, over the top stuff gone, and more focus on the stuff that makes Lucas a realistic high schooler.

Post when you've got Lucas edited, and we'll give him another look. Thanks!

SOTF-TV Mafia: Game Thread
So, I can't count, it turns out (actually, I just updated my notes before the night phase and forgot to change the number of living folks afterwards). Anyways, since I'm correcting that, I'll add this, too:

VOTE SUMMARY:
Slamexo: 1 (The Sickness)

10 alive means 6 for a lynch.

SOTF-TV Mafia: Game Thread
The night was quiet. Katherine "Kathy" Clements was away from most of the others, writing in her diary. It was a small comfort for her in these troubled times. She hoped that a record of her thoughts might at least survive this game, since she strongly suspected that she would not.

She was just wrapping up her entry for the night, ready to head back towards where she thought the others were, when a very bulky shadow fell over her.

"Huh?" Kathy said, looking up. Above her loomed a huge figure, inexplicably dressed in a priest's robes.

"Do you wish to be saved?" thundered the strange boy.

"S-saved?" Kathy stammered. "Who are you?"

"I am Harold Finston Smythe," Harold said. "I have been sent to release those taken by this evil game, to bring them to peace. If you wish to be saved, come, embrace me in a hug!"

By this time, Kathy had pretty well figured out that Harold was completely insane. This would be tricky to handle. She suspected he would turn violent at a moment's notice. She was shaking, shivering, but she was smart. Surely she could work her way out of this.

"I, uh, I'd love to be saved," Kathy lied, "but just let me go get my friends first. I'm sure they'd want to be saved too."

Harold smiled and nodded.

"Of course, my daughter," he said.

With a sigh of relief, Kathy turned and began to make her way away from the boy, fully intending to never return. She'd barely taken three steps, though, when something slammed into her, knocking her flat. She tried to scream, but felt hands closing around her throat. She tried to struggle, but it was too much, and soon the world faded to black.

"Don't worry," Harold said, standing up and dusting off his robes. "I'll make sure your friends are saved too. I've got enough salvation for everyone."






DECEASED:
Will, ORA5: Katherine "Kathy" Clements (Townie)

11 alive means 6 for a lynch. The day phase ends on Tuesday, July 3 at 4:00 GMT.

Also, here's the promised fluff for last phase. It has been edited in there as well, but I'm putting it here so folks catch it if they're interested:

Yesterday's Fluff:

SOTF-TV Mafia: Game Thread
A bit over ten hours for night actions.

Introduction Thread
Hi, Mage! Welcome to SOTF. Feel free to drop me (or any other mod) a PM if you need any help. We hope you enjoy it here. :)

Melanie Marsh
This character biography has had no alterations for more than two weeks and has been put in the abandoned characters forum. This profile is eligible for resubmission by the handler upon alterations requested from the staff.

SOTF-TV Mafia: Game Thread
END OF PHASE VOTE SUMMARY:
Dr. Roy: 7 (karsk, Will, JamesRenard, penguin_alien, KamiKaze, Whirlpool531, Slamexo)

12 alive means 7 for a lynch.

Finally, the students had a solid lead. The guy had come out and admitted it in the face of his accusers, laughing all the way. He'd always had a way with theatrical evil. That's how he'd been playing the whole game.

Of course, he wasn't one to go down easily. It required the combined might of the remaining students to pull him down, as well as several shots to finish him off, since it turned out he was lugging around a stolen bulletproof vest along with his amassed arsenal of weaponry.

At the end, though, the students knew one thing.

They had chosen correctly for a change. One of the biggest menaces to their safety was gone.

DECEASED:
Dr. Roy, ORA1: Vincent Sullivan (Mafia "Hitman")

The night phase lasts until 4:00 GMT on Thursday, June 28. Remember that you must PM me if you have a night action, even if you're choosing to do nothing. I'll get fluff up with next phase's fluff.

Introduction Thread
Hiya, Eve! Yep, what MK said is right. You can submit characters right here. Pregame's still got at least a couple more months left to it, by my reckoning.*

I highly recommend reading over a few past characters if you want to see some interesting styles/get an idea how people write here. I'll happily drop you (or anyone else) a recommendation list if you want. Just send me a PM.

Anyways, yeah, welcome to SOTF! Let me know if there's any way I can be of assistance. :)

*No guarantees, though. I've learned not to give exact time promises after V4's start.

Pregame Timeline/Schedule Idea?
I agree. I'd be totally up for doing that in future pregames.

The one concern I have is that it could make it hard for new handlers to get a chance to RP in older events. That said, perhaps we could allow older/"expired" times to be posted in in the memories forum. That'd remove all downsides except staff work, and I think we could handle that.