Friday, March 22, 2013

The Riddle of Blood e08 : Houses of the Blooded

The Riddle of Blood
Episode Eight
"The Serpent"

Winter continued its harsh and terrible toll upon the Ven.  The eight episode of The Riddle of Blood introduced a new character:  Kyocera Jalan, the estranged brother of the late Kithranus Yvarai, Blooded of the Serpent, who has been living in the frontier lands even before the trip to The New Land (which happened in Episode Five, "The Wilderness").

Kyocera Jalan, Gaius Mwrr, and Quan Wei Yvarai all wore disguises as they snuck into another's Region to watch what was called a play by the Veth.  Each one disguised their appearance as to not be seen among the Veth as they viewed the performance which was called, "The Life and Affairs of Kithranus Yvarai."  The play was a parody, with many of the dramatic moments of the Fox' life exaggerated for added humor, such as having Sapphire, Scarlet and Gold as his women.  Kyocera watched with great interest, but soon noticed a pair of far too beautiful boots worn by a cloaked man in the opposite balcony.   Quan Wei found herself speaking with some Veth who mistook her as a new Maid of the Ven lord of the land.  They opened up to her about how the Ven are careless and blind to the Veth's needs and how even the kind Quan Wei is unawares of the real reason behind the revolution in her lands.  When Quan Wei prodded for info, she discovers the Veth blame her husband, Yao Lin, was known for his cruelty towards the servants!   Gaius, unawares that his boots caught attention, made to leave the play after having seen enough.

Gauis would find a fourth Ven exciting the theater.  As the Ven motioned outside the theater, and a carriage drew up to receive her, Gaius slipped around the back of the carriage to appear as if he had arrived from away from the theater.  Dropping his black cloak, he walked up to the carriage's window and saw none other than the Dutchess of the Box herself and the late Kithranus'mother-in-law, Madelyn Yvarai.  The Duchess notes his presence and was about to invite him inside when Kyocera calls out for Gauis and instead sees his late-brother's mother-in-law.  She ushers him away and has Gauis sit with her in the carriage, then motions outside for her Vassals to act.   Gaius, uncertain how to act, plays it cool and pretends not to know why she is here.

Quan Wei realizes there is danger in staying and earnestly leaves the theater.  Kyocera walks after her, and both duck into a nearby alleyway upon hearing the sound of marching feet.    Gauis realizes Madelyn had called for her Secret Army, which then surrounds the theater, and massacres everyone inside.  "We were having wine," Madelyn tells Gaius without a moment's hesitation, "All afternoon."  Gaius realizes she had just secured an alibi of her whereabouts, but decides to play his own card.  "Yes,  and I appreciate the support you will give my patron, Ti'Anne Burghe in her bid to be in the Senate."  Madelyn is trapped, for her dislike for the Elk was quite clear.  But she relents.

Kyocera and Quan Wei find an archway to duck under in the alley way, and when the screams begin, both wonder what exactly is coming to pass.  Then it rains.  Blood.  And the streets are painted red.  Kyocera realizes the Duchess had every single veth present in the theater killed for insulting his brother's memory.  And Quan Wei hurriedly makes her way home, wishing she never came to visit the holding that was once part of the late Kithranus' Province, The Red Throne.

The three continue their tales in their own Provinces.

Kyocera finds a woman trapped under a toppled carriage on one of the paths leading to his Castle.  When he helps the woman to her feet, she introduces herself as Ming Tal, Blooded of the Wolf and Baroness of Shu.  She is the sister of Quan Wei Yvarai.  Ming mentions being attacked by a massive spider-like Ork which ate her horses and pinned her to the ground.  Soon the two encounter the said monstrosity once more, and Kyocera realizes the Ork is one of the creatures that have befriended him and serve his Province.  Not wanting to reveal such an un-Ven practice, he allows the Ork to be slain, and has Ming welcomed to his castle.  A strange hint of seduction seems to stand, but it is uncertain what her true motives are, only that she is seeking someone who had settled in the frontier.  In the other room, Kyocera meets with his Ork Talker, however, and learns that one of the Ork Maidens is seeking a Ven mate to further the tribe.  Culture dictates the Ork women rape a Ven male, preferably the best swordsman in the land, and misunderstanding some of the translations, Kyocera directs the maiden to seek out Reidon Yvarai.. unawares he had just seemingly sent an Ork to kidnap a Ven noble in another Province.

While at Wushu Castle, Quan Wei confronts her husband about the news.  He, however, does not take the confrontation well, and feels insulted she would trust the Veth over his own words.  He explains his actions are cruel to promote her own actions as that of kindness, winning the hearts of the people.  When she prods on the riots and why they began, her own servants finally confess that the riots are more due to the rumors of her being "possessed by the Dara".  Confused, she asks what they know of it and as it turns out, among the Veth the Dara is the embodiment of the Bogeyman.    It is a supernatural monster that comes to steal the undisciplined Veth children, and exists solely to destroy everything that their masters, the Ven, have created. Bothered, Quan Wei tries to ask her husband to trust her, then makes arrangements to leave while he is sleeping.  Her destination has yet to be revealed.

And finally Gaius Mwrr was dropped off at the borders of the Province of Box, to see his carriage already waiting there.  One of the Vashna is there, waiting for him, and informs him that his brother is being punished for breaking the code of silence.  While he was pardoned of his wrong accusations of being a Sorcerer, an error that the late-Kithranus Yvarai caused, he was then punished for contacting a family member.   When questioned on who reported it to the Senate, the truth reveals it to be Ti'Ann Burge herself.   Gauis arrives at his own castle to find Ti'Ann Burghe already there, and she readily admits to having reported it, not realizing the Vashna was Gaius' brother.  She promises to help, but admits she came to see him for an important reason, but the reason has yet to be revealed.


It was then I sprung a meta moment on my players.
But more on that once the eight episode of Lacuna : Recruitment is uploaded.

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