Part 80: Fake Update Special: Factions, Dustmen edition!Well, it turns out I've jumped the gun a little in my game, and I decided to get Ignus before Grace really settled into the group. So to fix that, I'm re-playing from one of my slightly older saves and redoing a few quests. While that's happening, I decided to add in a little filler. So without further ado, I present:
Fake Update Special: Factions, Dustmen edition!
You see a heavy-set man with dark skin and grim features. He is dressed in Dustman robes and is regarding you with a stony gaze.
Wait, 'heavy-set?' We have a Dustman fatty on our hands?
I think he's just big-boned.
Hey, I'm just sayin'. If he's trying to 'forsake the passions of this illusion of life' he could start by cutting back on the Death-By-Chocolate fudge cake. It's a counterproductive misnomer, there.
I should remind you that I'm the one holding the mouse. Now cut the snark and get on with it before I send you off to a chick who can make your guts turn into blood pudding.
The delicious British kind?
I don't think that the word 'delicious' can be applied to anything British.
"You have the look of one lost." The man's voice is like stone settling. "Did the wind send you, or are you here with purpose?"
"Who are you?"
"I am Emoric, Factotum and Initiate of the Fourth Circle."
"Is this your bar?"
"If you measure ownership in copper, this is not my establishment. If you measure ownership in spirit, it is mine." He pauses, as if trying to emphasize a point. "The Dustmen here are my students. They are under my protection."
"I would like to join the Dustmen faction."
"If you desire to join the Dustman faction, I will hear your request."
But- but- there are such cooler dialogue choices here! Look, I can 'Infiltrate the Dustmen for the Anarchists' or bluff my way through if I'm already a member of another faction! That's AWESOME!
Look, I'm about to run off for a nice pho dinner soon and I want to squeeze this update in ASAP.
You lazy bastard.
Strike two. And besides, if you really wanted to explore those options you could just buy a used Planescape: Torment/Soulbringer combo pack off of Amazon.
Two games in one, two classics for only 39.99!!!
Well, one classic and a piece of unplayable shit, more like it. You'll just end up throwing Soulbringer away.
Holy shit it looks like a new copy of me costs 189$!!!!!
Bet you wish you'd bought it off of Steam now while you had the chance, huh?
"You have misjudged me. I have no *desire* to join the Dustman faction. I merely believe what the Dustmen believe."
"Very well. Do you know our philosophy?"
"The goal of all Dustmen is to reach the True Death, oblivion. This 'life' that many cling to with their emotions and passions is a false one. As long as one clings to it, one will continually be reborn into it. One must divest themselves of emotion to escape this cycle."
"Do you believe it?"
"Then it shall be tested. Speak with Initiate Norochj. He is here in the bar. Return when you have done what he has asked of you."
"Very well. I will go speak with him now."
To make things short, there are three quests I gotta do to join the Dustmen:
1. Talk to Awaiting-Death and convince him not to kill himself. Emoric will ask if he's a true Dustman.
2. Talk to Sere the Skeptic at the bar, see why she's no longer all Dustman-ey. Emoric will ask if she's a true Dustman.
3. Find out what Soego's up to.
Since I already did all this junk, getting in is a breeze.
"Very well. You found him." Emoric doesn't react to your answer other than give a slight nod. "You have done all the tasks that I have asked of you. I will make you a Dustman, an Initiate of the Fifth Circle. Do you still wish to be a member of the faction?"
"Your initiation requires a promise."
"You must promise to serve the Dustmen. You must promise that you have left Life behind. You must promise that your goal is to reach the True Death."
"Again: Do you believe the tenets of the Dustmen?"
"I shall act as your witness. Make the promise."
Make Vow: "I promise to serve the Dustmen. I have left Life behind. I seek only the True Death."
"You are now numbered among the Dead. There are things I must tell you."
"The walking dead dwell among the Dustmen. Work with the Dustmen. Yet at other times, they have been the enemies of the living."
"That has not escaped my notice."
"The Dustmen have a truce with all the Dead. This truce is known as the *Dead Truce.* The dead shall never harm a Dustman as long as we uphold it." As Emoric intones these words, you suddenly feel a strange crawling sensation in the back of your skull... it has something to do with the Dead Truce, but you can't recall what it is.
"Furthermore, there exist magics that prolong life or interfere with death. Such magics are an anathema to our faction. They rarely work on members of our faction. Nothing must attempt to interfere with your passage to the True Death. Do you understand?"
Wow look at all this awesome swag! This earring kicks ass!!!
Yeah too bad you won't be able to use it. All we're doing here is picking up some XP behind the scenes and nabbing a spell or two.
Wait... why the hell do they have a magic item that can Raise Dead if they're so bent on dying?
Because they're idiots.
"What if it's... difficult... for the person in question to die?"
"The nature of your question is unclear, Initiate."
Truth: "I think I'm immortal."
As you are about to speak, you feel a prickling sensation along the back of your skull. You have a feeling that mentioning your 'condition' to Emoric might be a bad thing to do. He is still staring at you, waiting for you to speak.
"What if the Dustman in question was immortal?"
"Then they would not be a Dustman. Their belief in immortality would trap the Initiate in this life, and they would never reach the True Death." Emoric falls silent for a moment. "What prompts such a question, Initiate?"
"Their *belief* would trap them? How?"
"Immortality is a choice. Belief, whether one's own or another's, affects the flesh. One is immortal when one does not *want* to give up life."
"But then, by your argument, death is also a choice. Why do people die in the first place?"
"Death is also a choice. But unlike immortality, there are many that believe in death. Their belief permits us to die." Emoric falls silent for a moment. "We are not meant to live forever, Initiate. In our minds, we know this to be true."
"So... why would someone remain trapped in this false existence?"
"To reach the True Death, one must divest themselves of all passions and any ties to this false existence. These things act as an anchor on the spirit. Many creatures, such as ghosts or other restless spirits, are confined to this false existence because of unfulfilled passions."
Truth: "I think I'm immortal."
"What prompts you to say such a thing, Initiate?"
"I cannot seem to die. I can be wounded and recover quickly."
Emoric stares at you. "Show me, Initiate."
You make a small cut, and the wound heals almost immediately. Emoric stares at the wound as it heals, is silent for a moment, then turns his gaze back to you.
"Something about your nature resists the True Death. You are no longer a Dustman. You must leave."
FINE. You can take your half-baked blend of Nihilism and Buddhist philosophy and shove it up your powdery, dry zombie recta. t^_^t
Sweet! It looks like that burst of honesty has caused our alignment to change to Lawful Good! We can finally use that Tear of Salieru-Dei I had been hoarding to boost your Con!
Huzzah. 11 con. Too bad you don't get any HP bonuses until 15.
Okay, now it's time for me to go off to dinner.
Yeah well not before I give you some of this, too! t^_^t
OH JESUS FUCK IT HURTS ARGHGHGHGHGHLLLLLL
Tune in next week when the Nameless One runs with scissors!