Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Magic is Real.

We fly over oceans, hold the sum of all recorded knowledge in our hands, and speak with relatives halfway across the world without leaving our chairs. Magic isn't just flying on broomsticks or calling down fire from the Heavens. Magic is limited only by your Imagination, and your Will to make it manifest. There's a battle going on over the nature of Reality and Mankind itself. Pretend it isn't there, or get involved and forge the Future you envision.

Welcome to the Ascension War.

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RorytheRomulan
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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by RorytheRomulan » Sun Jul 19, 2020 11:27 pm

Geyser gives Ulrich a non-committal grunt for the pun, but nods.

He keeps his head down while everyone else manipulates the forces of the universe, breathing in and out, picturing the veil in his mind, willing it to become a wall. Each breath becomes longer than the last. One breath, he pictures drywall. two breaths, stone. Three breaths, volcanic rock. Four breaths...

His mental focus is interrupted by Jade Dragon when she takes Ulrich's advice literally. He looks up at her, startled by her shout. He looks at the museum beyond the burned curtains as the mages are engulfed in unnatural light, as the ground quakes, and a furious, pained scream echoes back.

/RAY./
Geyser stops and listens.
/Calm, Robertson is in control. Forget the bottom feeders. They should be thankful to draw breath for years to come - well... not all of them,/ it adds dubiously. /And stop crying. You're embarrassing yourself./

Face flushed, Geyser wipes his eyes and focuses on the Gauntlet again at 100%. He picks his pouch up to smell it again. Once more, his energy pulses, and he doubles his efforts on muting spiritual echoes and and effects on this spot.
Repeat last turn, but no Willpower. This seems to be wrapping up.

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Muskrat
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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by Muskrat » Mon Jul 20, 2020 8:20 pm

Pixel falls flat on her back from the blast of exotic energy. "Uh, was that good or bad?" she asks no one in particular.

She picks herself back up and says, "I sorta-kinda got a look at the entity responsible for this. They looked human. But it was like they were ... unstuck. They kept shifting back and forth between different locations. I dunno what that means."

She takes her smartphone out and says to the virtual entity manifesting on it, "Glimmer, do you have any ideas based on what I just saw?"
Familiar 3

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Hermit
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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by Hermit » Fri Jul 24, 2020 5:50 am

Galvanized by mounting successes in this contest of arcane wills, the volume of Dexter’s mantra seemed to reach a crescendo. The Inverted Tower within his minds eye pointed balefully down from the empty sky at its earthbound counterpart jutting defiantly up from the barren earth below, their struggle for supremacy enacted through an awesome exchange of voltaic discharges from innumerable sullen black and purple thunderheads hanging ominously between the two cyclopean spires. Both had sustained damage from their thunderous engagement, yet the one rising from the ground had clearly suffered greater structural damage, its integrity severely compromised to the point that a single well aimed bolt of lightning would likely render the hateful monolith into a pile of smoking rubble.

Believing to have spied just such a structural weak point, the Orphan poured what willpower he had left into what he hoped would prove to be the final stroke in mending the discordant breaches within the time stream caused by whatever this thing was and ward it from any further violations.

Repeating the same action as before, spending a point of Willpower to ensure a single success on the resultant Roll.
''At the center of your being you have the answer; you know who you are and you know what you want.'' - Lao-Tzu

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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by Karstil » Wed Jul 29, 2020 8:47 pm

Ulrich chatches Jade Dragon and lays her gently on the floor. He checks her pulse, weak, but regular. He calls for the one man, he knows can help her: "John, she needs you. And somebody get her Brother."
After that, he again turns his attention to Geyser and the Gauntlet. "Let's end this and slam that door in his face." The priest starts a new prayer. "In the name of the Father. Jesus Christ, his Son and the holy Spirit will the Border of this realm be reinforced and strengthened."
Work with Geyser to strengthen the Gauntlet, if possible with his own magic if not as aid others

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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by ManWithDoor » Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:57 am

Tears stream down Geyser's cheeks as his Avatar complains about them. The smell of incense fills his mind, extending it into the spiritual realms. He focuses on his breathing, controlling them, using them as a focus for building up the barrier between the mortal and supernatural worlds. Ulrich calls on Jon to take care of Jade Dragon while he joins in on the same Gauntlet project. Holding his Bible firmly in his hands, he calls upon his God to use his deific power to bar away the darkness.

Glimmer manifests in the Adept's sight, the digital being wringing her hands in worry. "This is outside my knowledge, it isn't a computer program or anything!" She reaches out a hand, yearning to be able to reach across the screen and place it on Pixel's cheek to offer comfort. "I can't say for certain, but I think it wasn't a 'they'. Dexter is the expert, but I think it phasing from one place to another means he isn't stuck in one location. But in time? Like we couldn't nail down its location because it was popping in and out of affecting us in time? Maybe?" She perks up slightly at a new thought. "But maybe we got enough of a reading that it could help figure out more about it in the future? Or track it or something?"

Khulai's vision of the Inverted Tower and its earthly counterpart battling for supremacy has its mirror in the Museum. Blasts of lightning and fire are crackling through the actual air, as awesome exchanges of voltaic discharge are exchanged in his mind's eye. As he focuses his latest assault on a point of greatest structural instability, he is struck in the back by one of the energetic breaches in reality, distracting him from being able to last a solid Temporal blow. The Romani Will-worker uses his formidable powers to hold together his Ritual, preventing it from unraveling.
Geyser: Spirit 2 (Gauntlet Thickening), TN 5 - 2,8,10 (10 explodes to an 8) = 3 Successes.

Ulrich: Spirit 2 (Gauntlet Thickening), TN (base 5 - 1 affinity - 1 Unique = 4 because that's the minimum) - 6,7,8 = 3 Successes.

Pixel: Familiar 3 (Consultation), TN 7 skill roll (Int 3 + Occult 0 = 3 dice) - 7,9,10 (10 explodes to a 9) = 4 Successes! Somehow. Damn, good luck.

Dexter: Time 2 (Counterspell), TN (base 5 - 1 affinity = 4) - 1,3,7 = 0 Successes. Not a Botch so the Ritual is still intact, it just didn't gain any strength this round.
The cracks in reality grow and lengthen as destructive energy enough to slice straight through steel buildings burns across to the near Umbra. The scream of pain and agony rises, and then the world seems to explode in fire and flame. The air that the disintegration beam flows into suddenly clears, and all present nearby can gaze straight across the Veil. A vaguely defined Being stands in its path, part of its body and face eaten away by Master Robertson's ritual. Its unknown purpose frustrated, it is forced to flee. But not before wreaking its revenge!

Reaching forth a hand while it is forced to retreat, time seems to stop. The Being's form attempts to haze and shift to co-exist in multiple locations at once, but whatever power it had spared for this task clearly fails as it coalesces back to its singular form and time resumes. As it grows smaller as it speedily travels away in the Umbra, a vortex forms and grows behind it, absorbing the energy of the offensive Ritual and spewing it in all directions, although it has now changed from a scarlet red to a darker blood color. Much of the altered destructive energy is redirected back at its originators, flooding through the cracks in reality that have not yet had a chance to heal and reform.

While clearly lessened near Master Robertson and the group of newcomers, they are not wholly spared from the conflagration. The flame burns not just flesh but assaults the mind as well. Visions of murderous monsters fill your vision to the exclusion of everything else. A gigantic creature the length of a skyscraper's height consumes the City in ravenous hunger. Smaller abominations come in a flood in its obscuring shadow. In the darkness details come in and out of comprehensibility. Squid-like tentacles, bare skeletons, chimeric mishmashes of different animals, steel rusting in the jaws of an insectoid, maddening clusters of eyes. All nightmares brought to life, assailing sanity while the body is likewise consumed by fire.

And just a seeming moment later it all ends. The Ritual, the sight of the Being, and its vengeance, all gone. In its place is the stark reality of an entire building aflame. Prone bodies are scattered across the entire room, some weakly moving, others ominously still. All of the Magi near Master Robertson and the newcomers are wounded, but none have been fully incapacitated by the backlash.
Revenge!
- Time Aspect: Reduced to 0 Successes by Dexter's extended action Ritual. Well done! Completely negated this part.
- Physical Aspect: Reduced nearby because of the strengthened Gauntlet in your area.
- Mental Aspect: Gauntlet reduction somewhat countered by the botched Mind protection roll. Pixel got the brunt of this one in the group.

Geyser: 4 Damage, so at Wounded (-2 to all non-magic rolls). Can walk, but cannot run.

Pixel: 6 Damage, Crippled (-5 to all non-magic rolls), any more damage and you'll be Incapacitated. Cannot walk, can only crawl (~1 yard per turn).

Dexter: 4 Damage, so at Wounded (-2 to all non-magic rolls). Can walk, but cannot run.

Ulrich: 2 Damage, so at Hurt (-1 to all non-magic rolls). No movement penalties.
- 'Burning Houses' PTSD triggered. Willpower roll, TN 7 - 4,8,8,9,10 (10 explodes to a 2) = 4 Successes! PTSD overcome, no negative consequences.
Rule Number 12: "A soft answer turneth away wrath. Once wrath is looking the other way, shoot it in the head."

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RorytheRomulan
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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by RorytheRomulan » Sat Aug 01, 2020 4:45 pm

When time resumes, Geyser wonders that the Thing had given him a heart attack, and that's all the thought he has time for before the suffering starts. Between the burning and the visions of some Lovecraftian overlord's return, he screams, seized and rooted by fear and as agents of pain and terror surround them--

It's over. Feeling as though he'd been in a steam room while someone cranked up the temperature to murder him, he stares at the space where the Thing had appeared and retreated through, trying to remember what it looked like but unable for the life of him to chase and capture the image in his mind. At least his face is dry again. in the space of 5 seconds, he finally notices bubbles floating up, breaking the feedback loop in his brain. A dolphin with a permanent smirk on its face swishes into view: Levy.
/See, it's as I said. The Enemy did some serious harm to you, however./ There's actual concern in its tone concentrated on the "Enemy" it speaks of, clearly the cosmic horror they just exorcised.
You saw it?
/Of course. I saw everything, land-dweller./ Levy pauses for a beat. /I can sense the pain. It's distracting to you. Make yourself well again./
Geyser looks around. He sees the other mages in the splash zone barely standing, others not standing at all. I'll walk it off. Some people look worse than I do.
Levy swishes his tail and drifts off. /Whatever. Follow your heart, Tiger./
_
Geyser rolls his eyes. He looks over to Jade Dragon. She's unconscious, but he's done enough for her. The other mages will see to her, most likely Utopians surely. He turns to the rest and decides to channel healing to everyone present.
"Wrapping up," he said, not realizing he really could have died still.

Life 3 (affinity): healing. Move Pixel up to Mauled. Per success after the first: same with Crippled NPCs, Yacatecuhtli and Robertson.
If no Crippled npcs: women first, minus Jade Dragon. If it's all Aggravated, well, it worked before, hopefully it will work this time as well?

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Muskrat
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Re: Chapter 1: __________ is Magic

Post by Muskrat » Mon Aug 03, 2020 6:07 pm

Pixel clutches her head, screams and falls to the floor, dropping her smartphone on the ground. She curls up in a fetal ball and weeps silently in pain.

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