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Tea Party with Death at Dawn
((Alice Baker continued from Can You Hear Me Calling Out?))

Somehow, she kept coming back here. And every time was worse than the last.

Alice had awoken before the now-familiar buzz of announcements, and now found she was unable to sleep. She was having trouble falling asleep too, but that was for quite different reasons. Anxious fear about what might happen while she slept, the unnerving notion of simply never waking up again, kept her from resting.

When she did rest, however, she'd had a disturbing dream about being inside a glass jar, climbing out and discovering herself in some sort of woodshop. She'd miraculously grown to full size as she walked through the room, which was full of various tools on the walls. She'd gone through a door, but on the other size was a large, pink mass of fleshy substance in a vaguely human shape, seated at a table with its head an array of tentacles slowly squirming across the surface.

The horrible thing had sudden moved, and startled Alice awake with such force that she bolted upright from the bench she slept on, much like she had under the pews almost a week ago inside the church she lay outside. A strange, circular turn of events.

She'd sat awake on the stone bench for some time, staring with a disturbed fascination at the nearby body. The church had been their chosen sleeping location, but now Alice sat in the garden outside, looking at the corpse of Rene Wolfe.

It was a puzzle to Alice, in a demented way; The corpse was difficult to identify, and had red, swollen skin around her arm, but was clearly dead from a gunshot wound to the head. What had happened here? Had she been wounded, committed suicide to escape the pain of a slow death? Was she bitten by a snake, and shot post-mortem for reasons she couldn't fathom?

This was what death had become to Alice Baker. A simple cause and effect. These people she knew, in varying degrees, had to be prioritized to keep herself from despairing. If people had to die, she selfishly thought, let them be people I don't know or don't care for. Don't let them be Sandra, or Bryony, or me or-

Unaware of her surroundings, Alice continued to stare. She didn't want to die. But she was inevitably doomed, barring a heroic intervention or an unfathomable amount of luck. How could she reconcile these two things without going mad?

She didn't know. So she stared at the body and tried to figure out who she was despite the bullet wound and blood.

Can You Hear Me Calling Out?
-then Sandra appeared behind her and spoke. Perhaps a little brusque, but a necessary trait in these circumstances.

"Okay, uh, sorry. Thanks. Sorry." Alice stuttered out her words, still startled by the appearance of the corpse.

They kept walking. In the back of her mind, Alice knew that this wasn't going to be the last time she saw a corpse. And, a part of her whispered malevolently, eventually she'd be one herself.

She didn't know how to think about that anymore.

((Alice Baker continued in Tea Party with Death at Dawn))

SOTF MTG Cardsmith
Dot, represented by Dorothy Gale.
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And just for fun:
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SOTF MTG Cardsmith
Here you are!

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Dave Russell:
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SOTF MTG Cardsmith
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Here's Selesnya Rene!

SOTF MTG Cardsmith
So I found http://mtgcardsmith.com/ which is a cool site that lets you make custom cards for Magic: The Gathering. I thought it'd be fun to make SOTF characters into Magic cards, so I've been doing just that. Here's my V6 characters:

Spoiler: click to toggle


I also thought it'd be fun to make cards for people, if they wanted. You can even make planeswalkers (which would be good for handlers) and spells (such as this one):

Spoiler: click to toggle


Based on Asymptote.

So if anyone wants me or another willing party to make a card based on them, a character of theirs or another part of SOTF, post here!

V6 Alignment Thread - Slightly Before The Halfway Point Is Still Basically The Halfway Point Edition
Lawful Good:
Ben Fields

Neutral Good:
Noah Whitley

Chaotic Good:
Fiyori Senay

Lawful Neutral:
Scout Pfeffer

True Neutral:
Jeremy Frasier

Chaotic Neutral:
Alvaro Vacanti

Lawful Evil:
Alex Tarquin

Neutral Evil:
Kimiko Kao

Chaotic Evil:
Isabel Ramirez

Another Disappointment of Many
Rene kept talking for a little bit, but Blair watched her fading. She held her breath, desperate to say something, but her throat was tight with fear.

Then it happened. Rene laid down and closed her eyes. Blair's breathing was the only sound she could hear, that and the wind, and for a moment she thought Rene had just up and died right in front of her, leaving the whole thing out of Blair's hands. But no, she could see Rene's chest bobbing up and down, slowly and faintly. "Rene?" She said, softly. No answer.

She stood up. She gathered the remains of Rene's food and water, and meticulously packed it into her own bag. She had a fair bit of food and water remaining now. Blair also gathered the medical supplies and the small cartridge of unused ammo. She left Rene the map and compass, though. Small comfort.

She slung her now somewhat heavier bag over her shoulder, and turned to look at Rene's unconscious form. She switched the safety off with her thumb, fumbling the gun slightly in the process. She could leave, she considered. Let nature take its course. Keep her hands clean.

She took a knee next to her companion, feeling like she was wrapped in a corset that was strangling her, and pointed the firearm to Rene's head.

A loud crack of thunder echoed through the gardens. Then, a soft click as Blair set the safety back on, and then silence.

It only took a minute or so before the sound of sobbing was heard. After about ten minutes, it returned to silence as Blair left the garden.

((Blair Moore continued in I Will Not Bow))

Another Disappointment of Many
With the swelling, muscle spasms, and the clear discomfort on Rene's face, Blair felt helpless. The best case scenario seemed like a rapidly diminishing possibility. She felt the metal of the gun, warmed by the heat of her hand, and squeezed it tightly, making sure not to touch the safety or the trigger.

"I'm okay...I guess." The pause was punctuated by a deep sigh. She looked at Rene again, before turning her head away to break down in a flurry of coughs. She'd been feeling somewhat better lately, and possibly the cool weather was helping, though rain sucked for her sinuses. At least she wasn't dying of natural causes.

That just made her grimace. She looked back at Rene afterwards. "I'm sorry."

Another Disappointment of Many
((Timeskip approved by Aura))

Time passed. Blair couldn't guess exactly how long, but it was probably around an hour or two.

It was hard for her, and probably worse for Rene. They sat around, making small talk, never really discussing much of anything. Watching Rene's condition deteriorate was incredibly stressful, and in the back of Blair's mind the question remained; could she do it?

The 'tagline' for SOTF only partly applied here; 'best friend' wasn't the word she'd use to describe Rene, not really. On the island, though, Rene was the person she'd been with the most, even more than Noah. They weren't friends before, but this whole situation changed that.

How ironic. A game made to destroy relationships could also forge new ones.

"How are you holding up?" Blair looked up from the seat she'd taken on a nearby bench. She was increasingly wary about the soil; given the spider that had caused all this, suffering the same fate would be incredibly unfortunate and also total bullshit. Rene didn't look so good, and Blair instinctively looked down at the Smith and Wesson she clutched at her side.

Another Disappointment of Many
Blair nodded. With nothing else in mind, this was what had to be done.

"I didn't either. But..." She looked down at the ground. "I guess I should say now, just in case, y'know...I guess it was fun. Not the island part, but..." She looked up at Rene. Forced a smile.

"I'm glad you found me and Noah, and stuck with us. You helped a lot. Thanks."

Another Disappointment of Many
"...If you want."

Truth be told, Blair hadn't even considered that. Selfishness could certainly have been a motive in this situation. She got a gun, a bag of supplies to make up for her dwindling food and water, and, of course, a kill to ensure her release should she be the final survivor.

But it hadn't really come up until Rene said it. Blair wondered if that spoke of her virtue, or her idiocy. Was it more important to be pragmatic, take advantage of the situation? Or be the right person, even if it made your life potentially shorter.

Well, gee, that was the whole point, now wasn't it? She hit it on the nose there, really. Survival or morality, what do you pick? What did she pick? Well?

Blair looked at Rene, solemn in expression. "Do we need like a signal? Like, a 'do it' sort of thing?" The gun was limp in her hand, arm hanging at her side. She didn't need it yet.

Another Disappointment of Many
Truth be told, Blair hadn't seen much of Rene's Smith and Wesson. She'd been aware it existed, of course, but it never seemed to come up. In a way, Blair was glad; it gave their time together a little bit of brevity. Only once had Blair felt truly in danger, and even then this pistol hadn't been taken from its bag.

She visibly took a sharp breath as Rene presented her assigned weapon. The implication was all too clear; a quick death rather than a slow one, a single shot instead of slow decay from venom. She considered asking Rene to do it herself, but chose not to; for one, it might prove impossible if the poison got too advanced, and for another, it seemed unfair. To force someone to commit suicide because you were unwilling to help them in that dark task.

She took the gun into her hand, and examined it. She knew how guns worked, at least on principle; it needed to be loaded, taken off of safety, and the trigger would be pulled. The firearm was heavy for its size, fitting for the task at hand. Blair couldn't help but find it curiously apt. Then again, it was made of metal, so of course it was heavy.

She looked Rene in the eye, and put her free hand on Rene's shoulder, comforting as much as she could. Blair nodded, slowly.

"Okay."

Another Disappointment of Many
The bite looked like it was only getting worse, and Blair had no idea how to respond to it. This situation would've been laughable if it wasn't terrifying; all the fear of other humans, and a spider was the deadliest thing she'd encountered in 6 days.

Well, Nancy too. But Nancy hadn't actually killed any of them. The spider might very well do so.

Blair looked Rene in the eye. The other girl seemed just as scared, if not more so. Obviously, given she was the one with venom inside her. Blair took a deep breath.

"What do you want to do?" She said, in a small voice.

Another Disappointment of Many
Oh man, oh man, this was bad.

"You said you don't have an antivenom, right?" Blair knew people could survive venomous encounters without the antidote, as long as they received some form of supportive care...which they were lacking, being on a deserted island.

"What can we do?" Blair asked in a small voice. She wasn't used to feeling helpless, but this wasn't something she'd been prepared to cope with. Murder, sure, but the slow death of a spider bite like Rene was implying? How could she just sit here and watch her friend die like that?

Friend. At home, she'd probably never call Rene Wolfe a friend, but here, Rene had been a supportive person and a helpful companion. Blair was glad to have her around. But now...

Another Disappointment of Many
Shit.

Blair was floored. "Shit, what." She looked down at the ground. The spider was scuttling away at high speed. She had no idea how there could be a tarantula here of that size without her having noticed, but then again, she had other things on her mind. Blair considered stomping it.

"Well, is it bad, like..." Blair trailed off. No. Being a downer here wouldn't help.

"Are you going to be okay? I mean, tarantulas aren't that venomous, right?" She forced a smile, and it came across as awkwardly as it felt. "It's fine, right?"

Right?

Chronicles of Darkness: Interest Check!
Hi handlers. In the past, it's proven a challenge to get various tabletop games with player bases derived from SOTF people in the past (as far as I know, only two games have proven successful), but I'd like to rectify this by introducing my own attempt at a campaign, using a system that very much appeals to me, Chronicles of Darkness.

For those unfamiliar, Chronicles of Darkness is, of course, a tabletop RPG system. It is set in the modern world, with the catch that the legendary creatures of the night - vampires, werewolves, fae, magicians, ghosts, cryptids and the like - all roam the world and interact with the unknowing humans on a daily basis, but under the cover of mystery and night they prowl, working towards their own goals. The trick? You can be one of those creatures. It's supernatural horror/modern fantasy, and a lot of fun.

The system itself is called the Storytelling System, and it uses d10s, or 10-sided dice, to determine successes; the more 7s or higher you roll, the more successful you are. Thus, all of your stats determine how many dice you get to add to each roll. For example, if you have a Strength of 4 and an Brawl of 4 and you make a Brawl attack (i.e. punching someone) you roll 8 dice. It's fairly straightforward.

I'm looking for 3-6 people to play in a campaign with me running the game as DM. Ideally, interested players should be at least somewhat experienced with tabletop RPGs in general, if not this system in particular. The easiest times for met to run are Tuesdays, every other Thursday, Friday and the weekend, so consider that factor for whether you can participate.

Other notes:
-This will probably be run using Roll20, which is a site that lets you run tabletop games fairly effectively. You'll need an account there before we play. You'll also need a Discord account.
-I'll be able to provide most of the stuff you need to actually build a character and learn the rules, i.e. sourcebooks. If you already have them, though, excellent!
-The templates (or creature types) will be Vampires, Werewolves, Changelings, Geists and Mages, with others or custom types to be considered based on interest given.

Interested Parties:
-Espi (DM)
-Empress Plush
-Skraal
-Cicada
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-
-

Finally, feel free to ask questions in this thread or in Discord if you have any concerns.

So, who's in?

Another Disappointment of Many
Speaking with Johnny seemed fruitless. He was one of those loud, trashy people, or at least he struck Blair as such, but apparently whatever horrible things he'd experienced had taken a toll. Not that she could blame him; it was a pretty traumatic situation to find yourself in.

Still, that didn't mean Blair could make small talk with him easily now that he was all sad and mopey. "Hey, we're kinda not too keen on visitors, so if you-"

Rene made a noise, and Blair's head whipped to look at the other girl. She saw something large and brightly colored in the grass near her, and for a moment Blair thought it was a snake and suppressed a scream. Luckily, it was only a gigantic spider, so she wasn't as embarrassed when she did scream.

"Jesus Christ!" She gasped, voice trembling as she coughed once. Clearing her throat, Blair moved over to Rene, who was sitting morosely at her bag. "Hey, did you see that thing?" Then she saw the tiny speck of blood on Rene's palm.

"Shit, are you okay? It didn't-" she didn't want to finish that sentence.

Another Disappointment of Many
Blair was tempted to groan when she saw Johnny. He was one of those nobodies with no ambition or ability to get out of Kingman. The kind of person who didn't care about the world or the beauty or adventure that could be found outside of a shitty desert town.

She initially suppressed the groan, actually. It then occurred to her that she didn't have to care about social niceties, not that she was the most affable person to begin with but had she been nice to Caedyn or Alan or Wade when he first showed up?

"Ugh. What do you want?" She said with an exasperated tone, rolling her head back in annoyance. Johnny was a complete joke, and the fact that he'd outlasted so many people was kind of depressing. Then again, the dying girl had as well, so maybe she shouldn't be judging.

Wait, she didn't care. Judging away.

Can You Hear Me Calling Out?
((Alice Baker continued from A Moth of Peace))

The cliffs were beautiful that afternoon, save for the corpse of a girl lying on the grass in a puddle of blood.

Alice had walked slightly ahead of the group to keep an eye out, but found herself winded at an inopportune time. Her breath was further stolen by the discovery of Bernadette Thomas' dead body. She couldn't help stare at her...or uh, it? She was dead, but it was a body.

Alice was stopped in place, staring silently at the body. She'd seen a murder before, of course, by one Caedyn Miller, but this half-decayed corpse was somehow cripplingly horrible. She couldn't move, could barely breathe, and she felt like any second-