Geometric Archipelago:Gangs of Octagon Island/Chapter 03
Chapter Three: Gathering Info and the Temple of Not Quite Doom
<Interstate-5> ---BEGIN GAME---
<Interstate-5> The three of you leave the police station in the heat of the day.
<Kanzel> "Man, I could use some sea-salt ice cream.."
<Capn_Ascii> "Ugh, I hate that stuff. It makes you all whiny and introspective."
<Capn_Ascii> "Fine, have some if you want. Jus keep it and those ugly black coats away from me." Ascii goes to try and hit up a random pedestrian for a conversation.
<Interstate-5> You notice several people walking about. If you wanted to find a person fitting whatever description, you could.
<Interstate-5> Or, you can just walk up and get a random person. Which... despite all the people, you can't seem to find anyone!
<Interstate-5> Okay, okay, no, you find someone :P
<Interstate-5> You find an ordinary-looking man in a business suit. He takes a look at you. "Yeah, what do you want?"
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii takes off his helmet, smoothes out his helmet-hair, and tries his best to look personable. "Sir, would you mind answering a few questions? We're...uh, graduate students, and we're doing a study on the effects of gang activity on the general populace."
<Interstate-5> The man sighs. "Sure, shoot, I got about fifteen minutes before I gotta get back to the office."
<Capn_Ascii> "What can you tell us about the gang activity here in town? In general, I mean."
<Interstate-5> "I know enough to stay as far away from all of the gangs as possible. That's why my commute goes between the Inn and the... other building, across the Commercial Square, and into the Residential District, where I live. I'm only over here because of the burger joint," the man points at the establishment in question. "Hawkeye's Burgers"
<Capn_Ascii> "Oooh." Ascii licks his lips at the sign. "Hmm, have to, uh, canvas that place later. Have there been any specific problems with the gangs, or just general mayhem?"
<Interstate-5> "Right now, it's the worst in the southern end of the city. The Green Team has been getting considerably more agressive over the past couple of weeks, putting the squeeze on the other territories, and even squeezing into the neutral center quite often! And the police refuse to do anything about it! Some malarkey about 'honor of the system' or something. Fortunately Circle Industries has a sufficiently strong and neutral security force in their offices here to avoid the pressure."
<Capn_Ascii> "Circle Industries? You work for them, I take it?"
<Interstate-5> "Indeed. Circle Industries is a trans-archipelago organization, and the largest corporation throughout the GA. They have some sort of presence in every major city."
<Interstate-5> "I work in the marketing department here."
<Capn_Ascii> "What do they make, anyway?"
<Interstate-5> "Anything and everything! Like, for instance, almost all of the swords sold here in Moondale will have the Circle Industries logo on them! Similarly, many of the finest simple magic items will also be a product of Circle Industries!"
<Capn_Ascii> "Really? Neat. So, uh, back to the topic at hand. Have you heard anything about what the gangs might be looking for as far as recruits go?"
<Interstate-5> The man shrugs. "I try not to find that stuff out."
<Capn_Ascii> "Alright. Well, thanks for your help."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii goes looking for someone else to pester.
<Interstate-5> You "accidentally" bump into someone you briefly met a couple of days ago -- Sister Lindsey, from that huge Temple, right over there! You don't really remember too much about that meeting though. You were just passing through, and met quite a few people. It's actually a bit surprising you even remember her name. However, you do think she's too good for a place like that. If you get my drift.
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii blinks, combs his hair, straightens his goatee, and flashes his best 'charming rogue' smile. "Well, hell-O there."
<Interstate-5> Lindsey turns and looks at you. "Oh, *you* again. Before you act like an idiot *again*, my eyes are up *here*."
<Interstate-5> She points at them, then glares pointedly at you. "Okay, what did you want?"
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii doesn't let his grin falter in the slightest. "Actually, my friends and I were looking for information. Can you tell us anything about the gangs here in town? I imagine the folks at the temple have to deal with their shenanigans at least some of the time."
<Interstate-5> "There are those in the temple who get involved in such things, yes. Those that have healing capabilities, and those that care. Which generally does not include me. That said, yes, the gangs tend to fight each other a lot, and it's a major annoyance to many who live here. I'm not sure exactly what you're asking, however."
<Capn_Ascii> "Hmm. Well, we're just curious; we're trying to dig up some info on their goings-on around town. You say that some of the other temple folks have dealt with them before?"
<Interstate-5> "Yeah, the ones that worship 'good' deities, or whatever excuses they like to use for worshipping weakness. You can probably find a few of them in the temple right now."
<Capn_Ascii> "Perfect. I'll let you get back to your...whatever it was you were doing."
<Interstate-5> "You do that."
<Interstate-5> Lindsey walks off, leaving an air of malevolence behind.
<Brellius> "Well, she seemed nice."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii mutters under his breath. "Bitch. Great rack, though."
<Capn_Ascii> "She says we might try asking at the temple. What time is it?"
<Interstate-5> According to solar readings, it's about an hour or so after noon.
<Capn_Ascii> "Alright, guys, we've still got a lot of time to kill. Let's hit the temple."
<Capn_Ascii> "Let's roll!" He leads the way, assuming Kanzel has gotten the ice cream by now.
Kanzel nibbles on it.
<Brellius> "Wouldn't it be easier to walk?"
<Capn_Ascii> "You know what I mean."
<Interstate-5> Eventually, you find yourself on the grounds of the Temple. It's a huge pyramid-shaped thing.
<Interstate-5> You notice people of all faiths walking around and in the thing. It looks like there are several entrances, depending if you want to be with a specific deity's followers, if that one that has enough active followers here. Or, the main entrance.
Capn_Ascii heads for the main entrance. No sense taking sides just yet.
<Interstate-5> Not even your own? Oh, that's right, you worship a traveler god that wouldn't keep a bunch in one place. :P
<Interstate-5> You go in the main entrance, down a short corridor, and find yourself in the Great Hall. A bunch of people are milling around. There seems to be lots of smaller doors leading to various locales, as well as three more main hallways leading in each other direction. One of those perpetual motion pendulums is swinging in the middle of this hall, and you notice there are a lot of benches in the
<Capn_Ascii> "Oooooh." Ascii is briefly hypnotized by the swinging pendulum.
<Capn_Ascii> He then starts looking for someone to help with his incessant questioning.
<Interstate-5> Here in this multi-faith Temple, there are so many people all over the place, and they wear their deity on their sleeves. Kinda. Well, you can tell. It shouldn't be too hard to find someone random from any particular major deity. Or, you could go down the hall to your right, which, as you recall, is the Temple's recordkeeping office. The sign labeled "RECORDKEEPING OFFICE" helps jog your memory.
<Interstate-5> You spot an elderly cleric of Pelor sitting on a bench, rather alone. You walk up to him.
<Capn_Ascii> "Hey there. You know, I used to be a cleric of Pelor myself. How's the sunshine treating you?"
<Interstate-5> "Very well, thank you. I turned eighty just a few weeks ago. And if I may ask, what caused you to leave His path?"
<Capn_Ascii> ".....uh." Ascii clears his throat, and quickly tries to change the subject. "It's a long story, and...say, how are you guys riding out the gang wars? Have they been intruding much into your duties around here?"
<Interstate-5> "For the most part, sonny, they've *been* the duties around here. They constantly go after each other so much, that we do the best we can to patch them up. Like, only yesterday I was out there dealing with the aftermath of a battle between Green Team and Yellow Union members. The Yellow Union won't be able to hold their lines much longer, despite our best efforts to patch them up."
<Capn_Ascii> "Really? Why's that?"
<Interstate-5> "Hyperagression. Green Team's apparently decided it's no longer satisfied with the status quo... plus..." the old man looks around and drops his voice "I hear they've even started to buy off people here in the Temple. Well, not 'hear' so much as... suspect. I know what an Inflict spell wound looks like when I see one."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii frowns, and whispers. "You mean, someone's paying the healers here to *un*heal people?"
<Interstate-5> "Well, there are plenty of worshippers of such deities that would be in favor of such things here, so that wouldn't be that hard. But yeah... Inflict can be used as a fighting spell. They basically are. That's been one way the balance of power's been altered, though it itself doesn't explain it... I hear Green Team had some shakeup internally, but I didn't pay much attention myself."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yeah, we've got a good idea what that's all about. I don't suppose you've heard anything while hanging around those guys that might prove useful against them?"
<Interstate-5> "Against them? They have a license to practice their religion... it may be distasteful to us, but we don't want our religion suppressed any more than they want theirs... it's just a can of words... I mean, worms... I'd be hesitant to start us on that path... Better to just handle them internally, and beat their faces in when you meet them on the streets."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii grins. "That works. Although I was actually talking about the gangs. Any juicy rumors?"
<Interstate-5> "Oh, uh, not really. I'm usually too busy healing to be listening. Sorry."
<Capn_Ascii> "Ah. Is there anyone here in the temple who might know something more? And who's in charge here anyway?":
<Interstate-5> "This is all contracted space. Some rich executive guy technically owns the place, we rent space and he doesn't ask questions. If he's here, you can find him in recordkeeping. As far as who might know something more... as I said, in general, we tend to focus on healing, not gossip. If you can get one of the evil clerics to talk... then maybe you can find something out, since they'd know. But
<Interstate-5> good luck with that."
<Capn_Ascii> "Yeah, tell me about it. Well, see you around, and good luck with the faith."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii heads for Recordkeeping. And drags his unusually quiet party members with him.
Brellius silently tags along
<Interstate-5> Arriving in Recordkeeping, you see.... what looks to be endless shelves of files. They go far back enough to where you can't see the far wall. Also, there's a desk in front of you. It's an ordinary office-like desk. Lamp, paper, pen, in box, out box. A sign on the desk says "OUT TO LUNCH."
<Capn_Ascii> "Damn. ...hmm..."
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii walks over and takes a look at the shelves, to see how hard it would be to find specific files.
<Interstate-5> As Ascii tries to get past the desk, he finds himself bouncing against a sort of invisible wall. "Unauthorized presence detected" a disembodied voice declares.
<Capn_Ascii> "Ow! Hey!"
<Capn_Ascii> "The hell is this?" He reaches up and pokes at the air in front of him.
<Interstate-5> It appears to be a springy wall... or shield of some kind. Clearly, it's designed to prevent ignoramuses like yourself from messing up these delicate files. :P
<Interstate-5> After a minute or so, Ascii and Kanzel hear footsteps.
<Capn_Ascii> "Uh oh." Ascii backs up and tries to act like he wasn't messing with anything.
<Interstate-5> Eventually, a teenage kid dressed entirely in silver walks up to you. "Uh... sorry for being out. Welcome to Temple Recordkeeping, can I help you?" He uses a glove on his hand to punch the shield in front of you, and you notice it shimmers a bit, then fades. "If any of you triggered the shield, nothing to worry about, I put that there so people don't mess up my records."
<Capn_Ascii> "No problem. My friends here kept poking at it...I told them to stop, but they wouldn't listen." He shakes his head disapprovingly. "Ah, well. We were hoping you could help us find some info on the various gangs that operate here in the city?"
<Interstate-5> "Uh, I just run this Temple, I try to stay out of gang wars. The only way I'd have any records on that stuff is if anyone from any gangs has died here as a 'failure to heal'. We just keep track of who uses the spaces and who they're associated with. And also, of course, payments."
<Capn_Ascii> "Ah, that's right, you're the guy who owns the building. Why do you rent to so many different faiths, especially when some of them...ah, fail to get along at times?"
<Interstate-5> "Technically, I don't own the building, that'd be Sis. She just doesn't like religion in general, but she inherited the space, and building codes wouldn't let us turn it into anything else, so... well, as long as the rent keeps flowing to her, everything's fine." The kid frowns. "That said, everyone *thinks* I own this place. Eh, I might as well own it."
<Interstate-5> "And this is the only temple allowed in the city, so the faiths either abide by the rules, or they find a 500% increase in their rent. Cumulative."
<Capn_Ascii> "Heh heh. Monopolies."
<Capn_Ascii> "Who's your sister?"
<Interstate-5> The kid looks around. "Uh... what record were you looking for, again?"
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii blinks. "The one that tells us who your sister is. Why are you dodging the question?"
<Interstate-5> "Because I'm not sure as to your motives with such a question, frankly... on the other hand, if I don't tell you, you'll just storm off and get the record from the police station... can you at least... not spread the connection around a lot, please?"
<Capn_Ascii> Ascii shrugs. "I was just curious. Didn't mean to step on any toes. And sure, we're discrete. Or is that discreet?" He scratches his head.
<Brellius> "Both, perhaps."
<Interstate-5> "Right, well... my sister is... Madeline Rose. I'm Brian Rose, by the way. But even that... people just call me Brian, usually."
Kanzel looks at Ascii, hoping he knows what that means.
<Capn_Ascii> "Really? You're related to her?"
<Interstate-5> Brian nods. "And I'm never sure whether to be proud of her or disgusted with her. I just send her the money that I'm obligated to as the profits from this, and avoid her in general."
Kanzel looks at Brian and back at Ascii
<Interstate-5> ---END SESSION---