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Charm Learning Shard (Worm/Exalted)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Daniel Snuts, Apr 24, 2022.

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  1. Zxzx24

    Zxzx24 Not too sore, are you?

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    Hm. Is that how Limit Break works in 2e? I'm only familiar with 3e.
     
  2. Whenever Possible

    Whenever Possible Versed in the lewd.

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    I mean, the Usurpation happened for a reason...
     
  3. Logos01

    Logos01 I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Part of it is more lore/narrative than mechanic. It's supposed to get permanently worse the longer you're Exalted, or the more you do things that trigger it. Like saying you do something so screwed up the ST adds a permanent point of Limit.
     
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  4. Dakkah

    Dakkah Making the rounds.

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    I think this is the first time that Taylor actually wants to turn into a murderous blender squid.
     
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  5. Rerororororororororo

    Rerororororororororo I love dogfighting

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    • Rule 1 warning. We will not tolerate you shaming 'meat-eaters' by saying they should find a criminal activity morally right.
    That dog fighting is morally right is the only consistent opinion to have as a meat-eater. If it's okay to eat animals then you have to acknowledge that they have no moral worth since it's easy to become vegan. Downstream from saying that animals have no moral worth is that it's okay to have dogfights. You can still think it's wrong because it fosters a sadistic mentality but it isn't absolutely wrong like rape or murder.
     
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  6. Mentos

    Mentos 吸血鬼

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    Well, I figured her opinions on dog fighting would be one of "oh no how could you make Mr Fluffybutt fight", "Get in there Bubbles, fuck em up, show em who's king of the ring!", and "power use not detected bored now."
     
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  7. Zxzx24

    Zxzx24 Not too sore, are you?

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    This is a good example of delusion and bad faith arguing.

    To draw another parallel. Killing someone, or making them fight someone else to death in an arena.

    Or euthanizing an animal quickly and cleanly, or making them fight to the death, be crippled, etc, etc...

    The conditions of the agricultural industry are bad, but here you can see it being drawn directly.

    "Just because bad things happen that makes bad things okay because moral consistency!"

    Foolishly ignoring that they pointed out that those things arent acceptable.

    Its horrific and should be opposed and scorned. Which it is.

    Using corporations as a moral dipstick for the average person on the street is just... delusional. Malicious. Laughable. Downright crazy even.
     
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  8. Earth-Destroyer

    Earth-Destroyer Versed in the lewd.

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    Sadly Corporations are in fact legally people.

    And I must say I do love seeing Taylor being portrayed properly, in her original psychopathic self.
     
  9. Rerororororororororo

    Rerororororororororo I love dogfighting

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    I don't think you understood my point. You're getting too caught up on the industry part. It doesn't matter if you kill an animal in the most humane possible manner, you're still killing them. The hypocrisy is that people are outraged when people do one bad thing to animals (like dog fighting) but completely fine with another bad act (killing them). The point is that being can't selectively have moral worth. Either everything is okay or nothing is, there's no ambiguity.
     
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  10. goricnac

    goricnac I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    The day the meat industry starts killing animals by having them brutally murder each other you will have a point. There are shades of grey dude, dont fall for moral absolutism, its garbage.
     
  11. Alucard 109

    Alucard 109 Not too sore, are you?

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    On the other hand, intent matters. There is a world of difference between killing something because you need to eat, and because you enjoy it's suffering. It's like stabbing someone because you're starving and need their wallet, vs stabbing someone because you like stabbing people
     
  12. R.A.G.

    R.A.G. Well worn.

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    boooo, either have her consistently ice-cold or less :V

    I was fully expecting her to fuck over Rachel, having her cling to some intimacies (besides her dad) for power, but not others is disappointing
     
  13. jeko

    jeko Getting some practice in, huh?

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    I no longer believe in Taylor's ability to extract herself from the empire.

    If she leaves, it will require a catalyst. Maybe Danny or Lisa getting killed? There isn't really anyone else she cares about.

    Or maybe Leviathan will smash them to pieces and there won't be an empire anymore?

    How many more powers does she want from them? If she wants to get the full house, she'll be there for a long time and she's already sinking fast.

    Unrelated, I'm surprised Kaiser is ok not knowing her identity.
     
  14. Zxzx24

    Zxzx24 Not too sore, are you?

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    Me too. I am admittedly disappointed at the lack of grimdark.

    I am well past the point of hoping someone feeds Taylor her own spine. Everything's just... worked out and gone perfectly for her. Its annoying.

    "Either everything is okay or nothing is, there's no ambiguity."

    This is a real human being folks. Keep that in mind.

    You can see how propaganda and fallacious arguments like the ones in this story twist peoples heads around in real time.
     
  15. Rerororororororororo

    Rerororororororororo I love dogfighting

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    I will reiterate "The point is that being can't selectively have moral worth.". If you're going to respond then you have to explain to me why you can arbitrarily apply morality to fit your needs. Either animals have moral worth or they don't, make up your mind.
     
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  16. Zxzx24

    Zxzx24 Not too sore, are you?

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    I'm using you as an example of a how this kind of thing messes with people. Not engaging with your argument.
     
  17. Edifier

    Edifier Trusted within thoughts.

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    Shoulda sacraficed Rachel to get a dogboy.
     
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  18. Stanley_Jeb

    Stanley_Jeb I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    The funny thing is that, in a very real sense, they just gave the Exaltations the same flaw Primordials had as well: Being unable to go against your/the Exaltations true nature as a backstabbing pile of hubris.
     
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  19. DigBickBaddy

    DigBickBaddy Getting out there.

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    As a point of discussion for Taylor's slippery morals she is spending significant (if not her only) time spent meaningfully socialising with active Nazis. You do become (similar to) the people you interact with most often (without time/effort spent counteracting that influence).
     
  20. Akuma-Heika

    Akuma-Heika The Devil Exists Within

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    Maybe use Magical Martial Arts or MMA for short instead, considering SMA is also the shorthand for Sidereal Martial Arts?

    Funnily enough, Lords of Creation provided the route that might allow a Dragonblood to learn SMA (with likely the same restriction of a Lunar Akuma [they can learn SMA if they favored martial arts, becoming an artifical Demon of the Third Circle gives them enough metaphysical status as long as they have the innate connection/talent for it]). A Charm that allows the Exalt to gain a new element perfectly merged with their being. All Aspect Abilities lose the surcharge to use them for said element, I believe it comes with life expansion as well. No one had successfully learned the Charm 4x to gain all elements, but the lore in the Charm implied that doing so might push the Dragonblood into a Celestial Exalt status; maybe something similar to the Alchemicals, a detached Exalt of a Primordial (in this case Gaia) rather than 3rd Circle Devas. Only canon Dragonblood to have done so is the Scarlet Empress after becoming the Queen of Hell, wife of the Ebon Dragon, and she is an Akuma at that point.

    If that method works, then learning all the of CMA Dragon Styles likely would as well...at least if their Enlightenment gets high enough
     
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  21. Zxzx24

    Zxzx24 Not too sore, are you?

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    I dont really like the arbitrary martial arts restrictions.

    Some people were given power sure, but why not try and reach higher and higher?

    Use strength dedication luck and talent to achieve things once considered impossible.

    Isnt that the central essence of playing Exalted? To go beyond?
     
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  22. Silvercrystal

    Silvercrystal That’s no Moon, It’s a Moderator! Moderator

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    Ok I’m just going to lock this until us mods have a chance to go through this and sort out wtf is going on, and if any action is needed!!!
     
  23. Megaolix

    Megaolix Moderator

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    Thread reopened.

    Reroro was hit for Rule 1. As a reminder, dog fighting is a criminal activity. Now, I know it was pretty much one guy, but let's get back on topic about the story.
     
  24. Rerororororororororo

    Rerororororororororo I love dogfighting

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    Bro you guys literally have bestiality and loli stories on here. Maybe I was being a smartass but you don't have to feign moral outrage about "criminal activity".
    PS
    Don't ban me, this is my last potshot
     
  25. Megaolix

    Megaolix Moderator

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    Fiction is fiction and we would absolutely ban anyone bringing RL stuff of that. Also, I'm pretty sure you cannot compare dog fighting to fetishes.

    Also, if you want to protest, appeal properly. Otherwise, drop it.
     
  26. Threadmarks: L.17
    Daniel Snuts

    Daniel Snuts Know what you're doing yet?

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    You're going to need another look at the schedule. Even if you could remember the whole thing, it will have changed as capes are shifted around to protect the remaining assets.

    Throwing another tantrum would be far too suspicious, if it would even work. No, you should never enter the ops center again. "Who, me? I don't even know the details you're accusing me of having leaked."

    You have Fenrir dematerialize a stack of notebooks and some pens. He can just walk right through the walls to get a look at the relevant whiteboards. He can't read, but he should be able to just copy things down symbol by meaningless symbol.

    The day passes uneventfully, except that Lisa texts you demanding to meet up. She probably looked sideways at Rachel and wants to complain at you about some aspect of your plan. Fine, whatever. You'll indulge her tomorrow. Today is Wednesday, and Wednesdays are Faultline-days.

    ---

    There's another person in the Faultline's office when you arrive. A young boy, wearing the white domino of the incognito parahuman. You look him over appraisingly, pretending that you don't already know who he is.

    "You were right," Faultline tells you. "The PRT database was free advertising. This is your first new client." She doesn't perform further introductions, testing you - or more likely, trusting in your abilities and letting you show off.

    "Kid Win, I presume. Quicksilver, at your service."

    "H-how did you know?" he sputters.

    "Please. A handsome young man with a brain full of Tinker ideas? Who else could it be?"

    "I could have been Gallant!"

    What? Oh right, Gallant does pretend to be a Tinker, with that fancy armor of his. Always Be Sandbagging, the first rule of capedom. You had forgotten all about that little detail, it's been so long since you learned the truth.

    "If I believed that, you'd be well advised to turn around and leave rather than retain my services. I have seen Gallant in action."

    "Oh."

    Hang on, it just occurred to you that only Tinkers can maintain tinkertech, and that 'Tinker-hours' is thus one of the most valuable commodities on the planet. Gallant must be paying through the nose to keep that suit running. That silver spoon sure is tasty, huh?

    "So, what can I do for you?" Like you didn't already know that too.

    "I, uh..." He blushes beneath his mask. "I haven't been able to figure out my Tinker specialty. Uh, all Tinkers have-"

    You cut him off with a wave of your hand. "Yes, yes. That should be easy enough. Invent me something."

    "What?"

    "A laser gun? A better mouse trap? Figure out how to build it. I'll watch."

    "Uh, okay. May I?" He gestures towards the desk. Faultline provides him with paper and pencil.

    You watch him sketch for ten minutes or so, which is how long you can be bothered to keep up the charade.

    "Got it."

    "What?" "Excuse me?" Faultline and Kid Win are equally surprised.

    "I figured out your specialty. You can stop now."

    "Oh." Kid Win looks back and forth between you and his half-finished blueprint several times before finally deciding to focus on you. "Uh, how much do you charge? I have a couple of hundred saved up..."

    "I offered her fourteen thousand dollars for her assistance," Faultline interjects. That's mostly true. A few caveats here and there.

    "Oh." His shoulders slump. "I could... build you something?"

    "And maintain it?" Faultline demands. Her objection is invalid: You're a Tinker. In fact you are, among other things, this Tinker. There is no way you couldn't maintain something he built. You don't mention this, of course. Even if you didn't have an identity to protect, Faultline is having too much fun playing 'bad cop' for you to step in and ruin it for her.

    "Maybe? Uh, what if I build you something and promise to maintain it for a year?"

    "I want the PRT parahuman database," you say. He stares at you, speechless. "You can scrub the personal details, I'm not looking to break the rules. I just want cape names, locations, ratings, power analysis."

    "I don't have access to that! I mean, I do, but only to read. Not to copy! Also I wouldn't do that. That's classified information!"

    The order of his objections is quite telling. You give him a fond smile, and lean down to whisper in his ear, a single word.

    "Modularity."

    Watching his face as he figures out what you just said is a treat, even with the mask. Confusion, shock, joy. And finally resignation, as he realizes what he now owes you. Sorcerer's sight shows the Loyalty settling into place, sealing the deal. Oh, Loyalty can be resisted, you've seen it happen. Were he a truly virtuous man, it would not corrupt him. But this is a hero you're talking about.

    "Come back when you have the goods," you tell him. He flees.

    "I expected you to want to study him," Faultline says.

    "Please. A Tinker power so weak it couldn't even communicate its own specialty to the host brain? I'd much rather have a list of more interesting targets."

    "Did you really figure it so quickly? It took you several days with me."

    You shrug. "The specialty is the single most salient aspect of a Tinker power. You asked whether it was possible for your television to get cable. He asked me what color the plastic was." This is all true. It is! Sure you already knew his specialty, and it took you something closer to an hour to figure it out initially. That's still incredibly quick by power standards.

    "So, Gallant isn't a Tinker?" Faultline asks after a moment of contemplation.

    You tap a finger to your lips, considering. "I should probably charge you for that answer?"

    "I did just let you use my office for a business meeting."

    "Touché. He's a Blaster in a fancy suit."

    "Must be pretty expensive to keep up the charade. Unless the suit isn't real tinkertech either?"

    "Couldn't tell you." It isn't so much that you're sandbagging your ability to spot tinkertech, as the fact that you've never actually seen Gallant in action. The reported capabilities sure point towards it being tinkertech, but you wouldn't want to accidentally deceive.

    ---

    Having Fenrir take notes didn't work out too well, you reflect as you page through a semitransparent notebook with a mind-hand. You can't read any of it. It was a good effort, you assure him. He's a good dog. You're not upset. But his handwriting suffers too much from, you know, not having hands. And being illiterate, he has no idea what characteristics are most important to preserve for any given letter.

    The way everything is soaked with immaterial drool and sticking together doesn't exactly help. Several pages were completely obliterated when he accidentally bit through the pen and doused them in ink. You're pretty sure he lost his place a couple of times and skipped or repeated certain sections as well. Oh, he bit through more than one pen.

    You'll figure this out tomorrow. "Come to bed," you tell Fenrir. He materializes, leaving the immaterial ink that was coating his face behind. It splashes to the floor, leaving an invisible stain. You should probably do something about that. It could give you away... if another cape capable of seeing into the spirit realm showed up in town... and decided to break into your basement for no reason.

    Whatever, it's hardly more incriminating than being followed around by a giant wolf, and it's not as if you're going to stop doing that. You are, you realize, making the same tradeoff analysis as every gangbanger with an unlicensed firearm in his waistband: The safety provided by this form of 'concealed carry' is well worth the minuscule risk of being hassled by law enforcement.

    ---

    Your next idea for turning Dog Burglar into a spy turns out much better. Before going to school you tinker up a simple cellphone holder, with a handle to let him grasp it in his mouth and a lever that presses the camera button whenever he bites down. He's done by lunchtime, materializing in an unoccupied bathroom to hand you a phone full of pictures of maps and whiteboards. And various other things he found interesting on the way, like buildings and trees and fire hydrants and random patches of pavement and the sky. Good thing your phone is an expensive model with plenty of memory.

    You completely blow off your responsibilities (to stalk Glory Girl at every opportunity) and instead shower him with praise and belly rubs. He has to dematerialize again when someone else enters the bathroom, but little things like that don't stop you anymore, and you resume as soon as they're gone. With mind hands!

    ---

    Waiting for Lisa at the cafe after school, you while away the time texting with Alec.

    > Hey. Can you do me a favor?

    < not if i have to get up from the couch

    < is the favor dick pics? because then yes

    > Yes

    < wait, srsly?

    > I'm meeting with Lisa, you know she's going to do her mind reading act. I'm going to booby trap my brain with your junk.

    < does that even work?

    > We'll find out, won't we?

    < yes!

    < sec, getting hard

    < [DSC000023.JPG]

    "What the hell, Alec!?"

    "You know how it is. One of my many admirers had a sexual emergency and desperately needed to see my dick."

    "I didn't need to see that! Go to your room, or the bathroom or something!"

    "Eh, effort."

    Oh, there's Lisa. You take one last look at the payload before putting your phone away.

    "Hey."

    "Hey." She looks at your smug expression with narrowed eyes, and lets her power loose.

    It's not working. She can tell that you want her to figure something out, but there's not enough to go on. You hold up your hands, your palms a certain distance apart.

    "Goddammit, Taylor!" That did it. Your smug smirk grows into a full-fledged shit-eating grin as a bunch of ancillary details cascade into her brain. "Why!?"

    You just shrug as a particularly juicy detail causes her to flinch. Now you both know exactly how sad Alec would have been if he'd lost that hand.

    "You don't even have anything you want to hide from me!"

    "Not this time. But if I instill good habits early..."

    "Fuck you."

    "You're the one who wanted this meeting. For no reason. Everything's fine. Tell Rachel Friday between noon and 2 pm, at the corner of 12th and Brassmaker street."

    Lisa gives you the stinkeye and tries to look beyond the elephant in the room (alright, calling it an elephant may be flattering Alec a bit too much). Still getting abused by Hookwolf. Still doesn't consider it a problem. Thinks she deserves it. Doesn't consider it worth hiding. You roll your eyes at her. Smug. Got a new power recently.

    "Don't strain yourself. Cricket taught me kung fu, but not the way she thinks."

    "Are you going to stop-"

    "Othala."

    She sighs. You'd think she was your mom or something. Damn, now you've gone and made yourself sad, thinking about your mom. Great job, Lisa. Way to ruin the mood.

    ---

    She was wrong, anyway. You're not getting abused by Hookwolf anymore. Apparently. He barely even looks at you, instead handing you off to an unpowered instructor. It's probably meant to be an insult - as a cape you're technically entitled to the attention of other capes - but you don't mind. You cheerfully settle in for a new era of still not learning what you're supposed to learn, but staring at Othala instead.

    From overheard snatches of conversation you gather that the new policy came about because Othala threw a giant fit over your treatment last time and threatened to walk out. You make sure to thank her the next time you hobble over for regeneration.

    You also gather that being assigned as your instructor is now a punishment for poor performance. That's definitely an insult, but again you don't mind. You could drop into mantis form at any time and wow everyone with your sudden improvement. You know, if you wanted to completely blow your cover - no one here is even teaching mantis style. As it is, you're not even tempted. The retarded girl you play here is just another role, like the closeted stalker you play during school hours.

    Unlike certain other people you could name, you can enjoy the feeling of knowing something other people don't without having to walk over and rub it in their face.
     
  27. R.A.G.

    R.A.G. Well worn.

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    Except Alec's dick, that you will :V
     
  28. One-who-reads

    One-who-reads Illuminatus

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    After the meeting with Lisa, I pulled out my phone to text Alec again.
    <guess what =]
    >no way...
    <yep! Mission accomplished!
    >HA! Now Rachel is the only one who hasnt seen my dick!

    So Grue has seen Alec's dick. Huh.

    It took me over an hour to get thoughts of Grue/Regent Yaoi Slash out of my head.
     
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  29. eeda

    eeda Not too sore, are you?

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    Is a shame there are no replicants in the Bay, i love to see what Taylor sheaninegans go to with her and her clones goin from place to place.
     
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  30. Zxzx24

    Zxzx24 Not too sore, are you?

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    :V Huh wonder what thats like?
     
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