Jul 21, 2018 9:08 PM
The Worst Kind of Surprise Party
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"Yeah. I suppose I could try scavenging from what's left of his little cult."

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"I'm not quite clear on what you need. People, obviously, but not which part. Brains? Bone? Blood? Souls? Force energy? Does it kill whoever you take it from?"

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"Blood. Judging from the number of bite marks on some of those people, it's not necessarily fatal."

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Revan eyes said bite marks. "If scavenging doesn't work, I can feed you. Maybe not comfortably right now, I was just stabbed, but I can heal. It'll be fine."

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"How generous of you. Thanks."

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"Yep. We summonees of the murder cult should stick together."

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"Agreed."

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Revan smiles at him, again.

"I," he says lightly, "am going to pillage while you scavenge. Let me know if scavenging doesn't work."
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"Will do."

Off he goes to drink the blood of dismembered cultists!

This involves his teeth lengthening into fangs, which is reasonable, and his eyes turning yellow and his forehead acquiring a hard ridged scowl, which seems unnecessary.
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Yep, that's a bit unnecessary. But he's seen weirder things. He can't remember most of them, but he's definitely seen weirder things somewhere. He's not judgy.

Off he goes to pillage for information on how their summoning thing works. And just for general stuff and information.
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There isn't a whole lot of information around. One exit from the throne room leads to a large, luxuriously appointed bedroom with several full bookshelves, but the books are mostly not about vampires or summoning rituals or whatever the hell that trick was with the candles and the black fire. In fact most of them seem to be fiction.

Also, neither the throne room nor the bedroom has any windows. The bedroom does have electric lighting controlled by a simple mechanical switch in the wall.

The lack of windows is explained when the other exit from the throne room leads to a stairwell that takes him up to the aboveground portion of this bizarre quasi-castle. There's a dormitory there that seems to have housed the cultists, and more simple electric lighting. Very low-tech, this place. All the doors operate mechanically, no automatic opening, no powered movement, just hinges and a handle. There are a few windows on the ground level; outside, it's a clear night, with one large and quite beautiful moon in the sky amid a totally unrecognizable configuration of stars.

Meanwhile, Mark is discovering that dismembered cultist blood seems to pass muster with his new vampire appetite. He experiments with deploying and retracting the fangs-and-forehead-ridges ensemble. It seems to be very definitely a package deal, more's the pity.
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This is very low-tech. The lights aren't a surprise. He's seen lights before. Doors that open by hand and not in a bizarre complicated fashion, though? He's sort of delighted by the novelty. He takes a few minutes to familiarize himself with how these sorts of simple mechanical doors work. Easy to break into, of course, you can just take out the hinges with a blaster and you're in, and it's impossible to open or lock them remotely. He's seen some things like them before, but it's more high tech than he's used to for a mechanical door. Usually it's hand-crafted wicker-nonsense or high-tech blast doors, no in between stage. It's interesting. Also fun to mess with.

(He only giggles a little when playing with the door.)

Revan takes some time to sort fiction from nonfiction. It's - uh, a challenge. Especially when one doesn't actually know the history of the planet. He copes, anyway, and digs up what seems to be a history book on something called the 'American Civil War.' He verifies that it's nonfiction by skimming it; it's too dry and technical for fiction, and there are various citations in the back. He's almost entirely sure that it's nonfiction.

He's going to get Mark to check it anyway. It's not like Revan's familiar with Earth history. He heads back down to the summoning location, book in tow.

"I haven't found any information on, er, this. Or vampires. And most of the books I've found seem to be fiction." He hefts his discovered book. "This was about the only book I could reliably identify as nonfiction."
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"Hm," says Mark. "Let me have a look."

He only has to glance at the title. "Yeah, pre-Jump Earth, all right. I recognize the historical event in question. Let's have a look at the publication year." He opens the book. "1998. Which puts us somewhere between 2010 and 2030, I'd say, judging by the quality and condition of the paper. Paper books show their age pretty reliably, some of them. If this Earth's future is congruent with my past, interstellar travel will not be invented for another couple of centuries."
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"Poor souls. May the Force be with you, brave galactically isolated warriors," says Revan.

He visibly brightens upon Mark's analysis. He correctly found a book that was nonfiction, and correctly guessed that Mark could figure out more from it than he could. It's the little victories, really.
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Mark grins.

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"Well, by rights of conquest the too-tactically-pathetic-to-accurately-be-called-a-castle's ours. But I don't know about you, I don't want to stay in the murder cult base. I think once we're done we should find somewhere else. I might have missed something in my pillaging, though - you are welcome to check for anything."

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"Yeah, I'll take a look around."

He pokes his head into the bedroom, then comes out looking thoughtful.

"Is it just me, or does the lack of windows really not fit with this man's image?"
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"It's not just you," agrees Revan. "The entire place is built for - well, to look innocuous on the outside, and then for his minions to treat him like a god on the inside. It isn't very practical, but it's not impractical in the way I would normally expect. Where's the opulent room at the top of the tower that overlooks everything? The dramatic balcony and the stained glass windows? He didn't seem to me like a man that lacked the ordinary tasteless style from these sorts of people. You saw the fur robe. He had a sense of the theatrics. I wonder why the design choice. I feel like I'm missing something..."

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"Vampire-related reasons would be my first guess, which makes me reluctant to go upstairs. But I don't intend to stay in the murder cult's windowless basement for the rest of my immortal unlife... Some legends have it that vampires react badly to sunlight; that might be it."

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"Possibly. It's night. If it's sunlight you should be all right, unless reflected moonlight counts enough."

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"Well, there's one way to find out."

Up the stairs he goes!

He does not explode in the moonlight.
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"Oh good, you didn't explode," says Revan sincerely.

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"I am glad I didn't explode. So, moonlight's safe. Sunlight is still an unknown."

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"Yeah. And we should find a spot for you to stay in case sunlight turns out to be deadly. Mm. Here's better than nothing but it still screams 'This will end badly' to me."

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"Does it?"

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