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File 152412786233.png - (16.80KB , 600x400 , dungeoneer_ch5.png )
879486 No. 879486 ID: e56bf6

So soon?!

Where are these people coming from and how are they finding my dungeon?

http://www.tgchan.org/wiki/Dungeoneer
559 posts omitted. Last 50 shown. Expand all images
>>
No. 918023 ID: 0163cc

Ok so the fact you just got cursed is bad, but this interaction actually has enormous potential for traps. You have tons of the orange goo and a lot of raw mana, so you could set up a bunch of simple mechanisms to mix them together when an adventurer does a certain thing and bam! Curse trap.
>>
No. 918025 ID: 13110b

>>918023
Also, we happen to a have a resident curse eating slime.
>>
No. 918051 ID: 017879

>>917807
Curse of mowhawk. Deem is cursed to have a mowhawk.
>>
No. 918053 ID: 40df11
File 154771792679.png - (39.36KB , 600x750 , clothing_damage_rpdeem.png )
918053

...

This was a new dress.

>Ok so the fact you just got cursed is bad, but this interaction actually has enormous potential for traps. You have tons of the orange goo and a lot of raw mana, so you could set up a bunch of simple mechanisms to mix them together when an adventurer does a certain thing and bam! Curse trap.
No, it's too unreliable. I don't know if it'll turn them pink or turn their bones to glass. I need something I know will create an appropriate level threat. The harm to the invader, the difficulty in dissolving it, the malice...

It's odd, I snake my senses through my golem body to see if I can find out anything about that melange of curses I inadvertently unleashed. I don't feel anything directly harmful. Nothing to steal my breath or wither my flesh. That's unlikely. And will make things difficult. I start absent-mindedly picking at my waist tie to remove the contaminated clothing.

>Also, we happen to a have a resident curse eating slime.
Alkaline resists curses and breaks them down easily but that doesn't make her immune to them. If I want her to swallow curses I need to afflict her with them first. Maybe I've been too soft, maybe I should use something with real strength on her. I enjoy her happy nature too much, I think.

>Also, if raw mana restores the goo... Maybe a little would beef up our orange slime?
It's destroyed some of the things I've used it on. Perhaps something more constricted, something mildly related to curse magic like the imp flesh to see if that strengthens the slime.

"We're not going to expose anything else left over from that nightmare to raw mana." I slowly say.
>>
No. 918054 ID: 40df11
File 154771799127.png - (29.30KB , 600x750 , feeling_snek.png )
918054

I look over my shoulder. "Merud, are you alright? You didn't breathe in any fumes or anything?"

"I, I don't think so." Merud says. "Deem, your hair!"

Twisting into snakey shapes. I see it now, playing in the back of my head thoughts of medusae I've seen, a compulsion to be take on that shape. It wavers, it seems it might be a passing fad. What about dragons? No, maybe not dragons.

"I've been cursed." I tell him. "You might have been too." I sigh. "Let me look at you." I use the scan lens to assist me, as it's the only tool I have. I check his pulse, look in his eyes, check his throat. "They're tricky things, curses. Effective ones hide in the dark, hooking their barbs into hidden places. The afflicted doesn't want to see them. And ones that don't cause any direct harm to their victim are harder to fight off, they don't provoke a reaction."

I pat him on the back. "Either you're unaffected or it's too subtle for me to see. If you feel any strange compulsions to do anything, don't do them. Unless you think it'd be worse if you don't do them." I notice his unimpressed look. "You have to play things by ear with curses. You're going to need a chaperone for a few days."

He looks like he wants to object.

"I do too!" I nudge my serpentine hair as I turn to address at the others. "This seems harmless enough, it might even be good golemetry practice. But I don't know if that's the only thing affecting me. We're under-equipped to do anything about it. I might not even be able to recognise if I am acting under the effects of a curse. I'm very resistant to these things. This might have been the only thing that got through. But until I erode or expel it, we'd better be careful."

I swallow nervously. This is the hard part. "I'm going to put a seal on myself so I can't use some of the dungeon's magic without a token held by another."

Who should I give that to?
>>
No. 918057 ID: 9caba2

>>918054
If you're going to give a token to your staff, you might as well give it to Stargazer. I'm sure she'll find somewhere to store it safely.
>>
No. 918058 ID: 465a14

>>918054
Moriko.
>>
No. 918060 ID: a11364

>>918054
merud.
or if that's a bad idea because he might be cursed too, then moriko.
>>
No. 918062 ID: 10c408

Give it to Hin. Out of everyone here, she's neither squishy (Reisarf), possibly cursed (Merud) or in some pretty hefty denial about herself (moriko).
>>
No. 918063 ID: 080aaf

>>918054
Moriko would be hard-pressed to say no. Give it to Reisarf. He's easygoing, but will stop you when it counts.
>>
No. 918064 ID: 977456

Well, Moriko IS your primary guardian, and she IS skilled at discerning magic.
Stargazer and Reisarf ought have the better senses, but one has distinctly alien thought processes, and the other doesn't speak.
Merud is contaminated and Hin has a newly readied forge to break in, while the monsters seem prone to obedience. That said, Moriko might be reluctant to oppose you directly, you might need to confront her about the full threat of an unstable Deem.
>>
No. 918069 ID: 0c3c2c

>>918054
Hmmmm... Moriko has her own issues to deal with and an additional stressor might make her life worse right now. Hin is busy with her work and still not quite recovered from her illnesses. Reisarf is young and inexperienced.

Clearly we should give it to our oldest and most trusted minion, Chakarchelou
>>
No. 918071 ID: ad51b8

honestly I say either go with Moriko or Reisarf.
Moriko would probably like that you're putting so much trust into her and Reisarf is carrying the least amount of emotional baggage with him right now so you know that his head is clear.

Would suggest Hin but after that debacle with her and your core I don't really feel ready enough to trust her with something like this

Alkaline is a no go because I don't think she's mature enough to handle something like this yet

Merud may also be cursed so it would kinda defeat the purpose I feel

and while Chakarchelou would be an amusing choice to be sure but he can't be the one you pick for obvious reasons.
>>
No. 918076 ID: 017879

>>918054
I'd say Hin. The same meddling do-gooding attitude that led her to lifting your core before is exactly what we need here. Someone willing to override any strange impulses you may be under the effect of and not realize.

Merud may be compromised by stealth curses, Moriko is maybe too loyal that it would be a distressing duty for her if you start demanding it back out of some impulse, and Reisarf should be busy supervising Merud.

See, the two best chaperones, by merit of their observational prowess, are Moriko and Reisarf. Patrolling with Moriko sounds like a welcome distraction from your self-sealed state to me. It'll get you out of the cave and doing something useful that doesn't rely on, and remind you of, dungeon magic.

Also, are you sure your curse isn't too "real"? What if you've made Merud rock hard somewhere and he's hiding it from you? Seriously consider a full examination.
>>
No. 918077 ID: bddb0f

Oof. Shame about the dress. You should definitely get some kind of 'work clothes' that you can use on the regular, instead of your finest finery.

... man, I wonder how all of these curses came to be in the first place. A byproduct of your state? Something the Hag did? Also - now that we know what it is - anything in particular we could do with all of this hazardous waste? Feed it to Alkaline for training/disposal purposes?

We should probably not touch the worst slime with raw mana. Goodness knows what it is actually originally composed of. A sentient curse?

>>918076

Give it to Moriko. She's capable, always was, and should still be. I don't think her issue makes her less trustworthy - just a little less efficient.

Maybe this is a good opportunity for all of you - you, Moriko and Merud - to test out the meditation chamber? If the curse forces you to act or think in a certain way, trying to sit still and think of nothing may rather clearly delineate what its nature is.

Although... if nothing bad happens immediately, you should probably try to wrap up the experiments first, while you have everyone gathered.

Hmm... another thought. You've got a clay body, and this curse was some manner of contaminant. Could the curse be soaking in slowly? Could, say, Alkaline hug you and soak out some of the material? Or at least salvage your clothes.

>snake hair

Be cute and cozy up to snuggle things.
>>
No. 918078 ID: 158da5

Loyalty means that you can order Moriko to ignore later orders, and she's not going to just forget the initial order. So just make the order clear that she's to use her best judgement about the token, to compare anything Deem says to pre-curse Deem, and to reflexively second guess Deem.
>>
No. 918079 ID: 575ec0

Give it to stargazer. The Noodle is good people.
>>
No. 918080 ID: 7814f0

>>918071
I can't believe it took me this long to notice that "Reisarf" is "Frasier" backwards.
>>
No. 918086 ID: b1b4f3

>>918054
Merud is disqualified since he could be cursed too. Moriko is dealing with some after-effects still so I wouldn't give it to her. Stargazer is probably the best choice since she was instrumental in bringing you out of the nightmare, and is very observant. She should be able to tell if you're not well.
>>
No. 918099 ID: 2202fb

Stargazer and Reisarf.

They totally dont have a hidden agenda (i highly doubt they are a evil tho) and are going to exploit this for the good of everyone to Deem's chagrin, or anything. Definitely not.
>>
No. 918133 ID: 99ed9b

It's pretty obvious it should be Moriko. Why wouldn't you give your defender the responsibility of overseeing you while vulnerable.

Can't give it to Merud, Resiarf isn't the right person for this job, Stargazer probably isn't really an option, though Hin might also be a valid option if Moriko couldn't.
>>
No. 918136 ID: afdebc

>Who should I give that to?
Moriko. Let her feel like she's protecting you, and reinforce that you trust her. It'll be good for her, especially with what else she has going on.
>>
No. 918137 ID: 977456

If you don't know if the curse is affecting your decisions, then you can't be trusted to decide who should protect you from the curse. Tell your uncursed denizens to decide who is on monitor duty.
>>
No. 918142 ID: a11364

not stargazer please. she's not exactly the rule abiding type. she's loyal to none but reisarf.

>>918080
i will never be able to look at his name the same way again.
>>
No. 918143 ID: 498ed0

I still stand by this curse interaction being useful. Maybe not for adventurers, but it could make a weapon against monsters that wander in. Or maybe you could control what kind of curse is produced by using Belphe to mix them. Curse potions.
>>
No. 918152 ID: 10c408

You know, it just occurred to me.. Is it possible that all of the orange goo laying around is simply night hag blood and/or guts? We wounded it pretty heavily and the goo is both everywhere and an apparently heavily cursed substance.
>>
No. 918161 ID: 094652

Use a dice roll to determine the rotation order.
>>
No. 918208 ID: 2007b6

Give the token to Hin. She's the only individual you know of who has absolutely proven her willingness and ability to work behind your back and against your explicit orders, even to the point of temporarily cutting off your powers and arguing with or fighting your other servants, just to check important facts independently when she thinks you're being too sneaky, or taking unreasonable risks. You didn't think that would be an asset, but now it is! Congratulations.
>>
No. 918212 ID: 977456

Moriko has some very good sensory abilities, especially towards creatures of The Earth Pulse. Someone who relies upon a power-source larger than their own head to fight doesn't strike me as a great personage.
Did Moriko keep Deem's "I am actually the dungeon" secret since their duel and still hasn't told anyone? You might want to ask her about that before entrusting her with a curse that might randomly change what people hear when you talk.
>>
No. 918244 ID: 891c9f

>>918212
That hasn't been a secret since the Hin-heart incident.
>>
No. 918246 ID: 977456

>>918244
It still reflects upon Moriko's willingness to resist Deem.
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No. 918255 ID: 40df11
File 154787048751.png - (22.00KB , 800x550 , clothing_construction.png )
918255

>If you don't know if the curse is affecting your decisions, then you can't be trusted to decide who should protect you from the curse. Tell your uncursed denizens to decide who is on monitor duty.
...

I think they'd say something if I was making an obvious bad decision.

>Oof. Shame about the dress. You should definitely get some kind of 'work clothes' that you can use on the regular, instead of your finest finery.
Well it was meant to be temporary anyway, I suppose. And the other piece of fabric is fine. I should be able to improvise something out of odds and ends.

>See, the two best chaperones, by merit of their observational prowess, are Moriko and Reisarf. Patrolling with Moriko sounds like a welcome distraction from your self-sealed state to me. It'll get you out of the cave and doing something useful that doesn't rely on, and remind you of, dungeon magic.

>Stargazer and Reisarf ought have the better senses, but one has distinctly alien thought processes, and the other doesn't speak.
"Communicating with them is difficult at the best of times..." That's a good point. It will have to be Moriko.

>Merud is contaminated and Hin has a newly readied forge to break in, while the monsters seem prone to obedience. That said, Moriko might be reluctant to oppose you directly, you might need to confront her about the full threat of an unstable Deem.
She's experienced it already. "That nightmare was bad enough." This curse isn't in the same category as that, but I did have that dawn conversation with her about this exact thing.

"Is everything OK, Deem?" Hin asks.

"Just thinking." I say. "I'll have to give the token to Moriko, I think."

"No objections here!" Hin says.

Moriko nods solemnly. "Please excuse me then, I need to prepare myself for this responsibility." she walks out into Hin's forge and then up towards the Meditation Room.

>Maybe this is a good opportunity for all of you - you, Moriko and Merud - to test out the meditation chamber? If the curse forces you to act or think in a certain way, trying to sit still and think of nothing may rather clearly delineate what its nature is.
Hmm, perhaps. I'll need to think of some light activities for everyone while I work through this curse anyway.
>>
No. 918256 ID: 40df11
File 154787056157.png - (24.57KB , 600x750 , slime_hugs_aka_slhugs.png )
918256

>You've got a clay body, and this curse was some manner of contaminant. Could the curse be soaking in slowly? Could, say, Alkaline hug you and soak out some of the material? Or at least salvage your clothes.
The curse has already expended it's power, but I'm going to allow this anyway.

>... man, I wonder how all of these curses came to be in the first place. A byproduct of your state? Something the Hag did? Also - now that we know what it is - anything in particular we could do with all of this hazardous waste? Feed it to Alkaline for training/disposal purposes?
I was cursed and then my dungeon was completely sealed to let it curdle while the earth-pulse was running wild. That's a breeding ground for curses.

>You know, it just occurred to me.. Is it possible that all of the orange goo laying around is simply night hag blood and/or guts? We wounded it pretty heavily and the goo is both everywhere and an apparently heavily cursed substance.
"Unless it was secretly a whale or elephant that much blood wouldn't have fit in its body." It's harmless in its natural state. I've been eating it for the past week.

Alkaline's clinging to me so tightly. I think she's thinking back to the night hag too.

I twist a bit, rocking her side to side. "Now now, silly slime, not so tight. I'm not going anywhere."

I pat her on the back and soothe her for a little while. "Now your slimes must be getting hungry, so why don't you go with Hin and get something for them?"

I look over at my blacksmith. "Hin, could you try giving the orange slime some of the imp meat? Seeing what we've learned, that might be good for it."

>Alkaline is a no go because I don't think she's mature enough to handle something like this yet
She's still a child.

>Clearly we should give it to our oldest and most trusted minion, Chakarchelou.
He'd probably get too demanding with chin scratches in exchange for doing anything.
>>
No. 918257 ID: 40df11
File 154787072391.png - (32.95KB , 600x750 , it_might_have_turned_you_into_a_frog_instead.png )
918257

>Also, are you sure your curse isn't too "real"? What if you've made Merud rock hard somewhere and he's hiding it from you? Seriously consider a full examination.
I would have known that something was up if he was having any trouble with his circulation.

>I still stand by this curse interaction being useful. Maybe not for adventurers, but it could make a weapon against monsters that wander in. Or maybe you could control what kind of curse is produced by using Belphe to mix them. Curse potions.
That is a good point, actually. Perhaps it does merit some further investigation.

But first Merud is looking a little stressed, so I sit next to him for a chat.

"How are you so calm, Deem?" he says to me. He shifts uncomfortably in his seat. "You don't know what's wrong, you don't know what might be messing with your head..."

"Because I've been here before, Merud." I tell him. "That's all experience really is. I've been in a lot of new and uncomfortable situations of late, but with this I know where I stand. Don't worry about yourself either. A curse is something that's imposed on someone, a thorny thing that grips onto them with its barbs. The harm it inflicts is something you'd use to diagnose and remove it. Your spirit will fight it off too. But this one is weak in that respect and it wasn't crafted, so it might have have persistence but it can't be that strong."

"So what we'll see for any mental curses is a twisting of impulses, not absolute restrictions and mazes in the mind. With a normal curse there's almost always a way around or through. Very few have the will or desire to make something perfect and enduring. The cost is simply too high. That's why you should be wary of a dying curse, or something spiteful and cornered like that night hag - it had wound up and readied that nightmare knowing it would die if it wasn't able to overpower the next person who stumbled on it."

I frown. "This has gotten more morbid that I intended." I pat him on the back. "For your case you'll be fine. Just take care of yourself and remember the most dangerous thing you can do is abdicating responsibility for your actions and blaming it on a curse."

Merud's a little strange. He seems to have led a sheltered life. He's never spoken about his family or his upbringing but he does occasionally refer to have having studied in various cities, which suggests wealth. Maybe I should ask him about it but I do need ot get this token finished before anything goes wrong.

I stand up and rub my hands together. "Anyway we need to finish up these raw mana experiments before it gets too late. Can you and Reisarf make sure we're ready to get started again?"

Merud perks up a little. "We're still doing them?"

"The known provenance of our other items means it's extremely unlikely any of them will explode into curses. But first I have to see Moriko."
>>
No. 918258 ID: 40df11
File 154787074941.png - (17.73KB , 800x600 , moriko_handover.png )
918258

>Moriko. Let her feel like she's protecting you, and reinforce that you trust her. It'll be good for her, especially with what else she has going on.
>She's capable, always was, and should still be. I don't think her issue makes her less trustworthy - just a little less efficient.
I have the token ready and Moriko's waiting for me in the Meditation Room. How should I approach this? To impress on her that this is essentially a piece of my Heart I'm giving her and it is not something I would do lightly. To tell her that I trust her, that I don't care about her demon blood and that I need to steal her old skirt?
>>
No. 918259 ID: 465a14

Kiss her. Actions carry far more meaning than words, it'll be much more efficient than talking.
>>
No. 918260 ID: 080aaf

Tell her you'd like to make a trade: a piece of your Heart for a piece of her clothes.
>>
No. 918262 ID: 891c9f

>>918257
>Can you
Apparently your curse includes randomly cutting off your dialogue.

>>918259
Don't do that to Moriko, she doesn't deserve to be confused like that again. Remember the nightmare?
>>
No. 918265 ID: c0641d

Let's not interrupt her meditation... hard. Make a small sound, just to let her know we're here, and let her broach the conversation at her own pace. Do make sure she understands that we're entrusting a part of ourselves to her.

> And that I need to steal her skirt.

Welp, there's symptom numero uno. Definitely also inform her that you've already identified a potential kleptomania curse, so if we end up stealing something of hers, she shouldn't expect it back until after the curse is lifted unless she wants to have a go at stealing it back herself.
>>
No. 918266 ID: ad51b8

I'd suggest sitting next to her and meditating yourself until she acknowledges you. Might take a moment but when she does address you, you should start by thanking her for agreeing to do this for you as she is holding a piece of your very being. Maybe explain a little about what exactly she is holding on to and throw in a few hints that you know about her demon heritage and don't really mind. Like saying something along the lines of "the some of it's parts doesn't define what the whole decides to be".

At any point though if she starts to get uncomfortable or you fear the topic is veering off into dangerous territory, or if you feel that the conversation is start to wrap itself up, ask her if you could ask her for a favor and then ask if you could borrow one of her old skirts. Should be a good enough topic change to try and defuse a awkward situation or a misunderstanding if the "I trust you" talk starts getting too bumpy.
>>
No. 918270 ID: b1b4f3

>>918258
Well I mean it's like the same thing you did near the start, when you gave her your heart to bring into the dungeon. It's not that new to her.
Do comment that the flower is nice, it matches her eyes. And also demon blood!
>>
No. 918271 ID: daffb0

Careful not to think anything you wouldn't want to accidentally say, Deem. Aside from that, though, (mostly) honesty is probably the best policy. Aside from the demon blood thing, I think you can just say everything you just thought to her directly!
>>
No. 918283 ID: 0c3c2c

>>918258
Impressing the facts on her is important. Her ancestry is-

Oh bugger. Deem, remember how Moriko reacted when you animated her hair. Your hair is now permanently animate.
>>
No. 918286 ID: b1b4f3

>>918283
She's already seen it.
>>
No. 918293 ID: 158da5

>>918258
The latter. It's direct, and useful in multiple ways.
>>
No. 918294 ID: 1774cd

>>918258
I think the fact that she immediately went to meditate to prepare herself shows that she's aware of the weight of your actions. Don't overexplain. Just thank her. Also, be blunt about the rest of the things. Perhaps ask what about her demonic ancestry worries her so much?
>>
No. 918296 ID: a11364

>>918258
>that I don't care about her demon blood
didn't we say we'll let her come to us on her own?
you should tell her you care and you're worried about her. maybe remind her you're still here for her and that you're inherently nonjudgmental so unless it's skypower-related there's not much that can make you think less of her.

do tell her you're trusting her with your heart, though.
>>
No. 918305 ID: 10c408

Patiently wait for Moriko to finish meditating. Then thank her for agreeing to this and for goodness sake don't bring up her demon blood.

Do explain that since you are under the effect of potentially multiple and unknown curses, anything you say or do should be taken with a giant grain of salt.
>>
No. 918335 ID: 2007b6

First, tie up your snakes behind your head somehow. A stone O-ring, like a napkin holder, maybe. Then sit down and poke at the earth-pulse as gently as you can, just enough to catch her attention.

As for the explanation, keep it simple. "There was a lab accident involving unformed curses. If my judgement becomes dangerously impaired, use this token to seal away my powers until a cure can be arranged."
>>
No. 918337 ID: 10c408

>>918335
The stone hair tie is a good idea, but Moriko already knows the gist of what happened since she was present for it before moving to the meditation chamber. I'm also pretty sure that the sealing magic token isn't Deem's personal kryptonite, more of a small object that Deem has to be holding in order to use some of her power that would otherwise be locked because she doesn't have it in her possession.
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