Difference between revisions of "Dream Sequence"

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|date=The run begins at night, shortly after the conclusion of the previous run.
 
|date=The run begins at night, shortly after the conclusion of the previous run.
 
|location=The run takes place in a number of implausible locations in the World of Dreams.
 
|location=The run takes place in a number of implausible locations in the World of Dreams.
|runlinks=[[Recondite Tributaries|Previous Run]]
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|runlinks=[[Recondite Tributaries|Previous Run]] [[Fox in Socks|Next Run]]
 
}}
 
}}
 
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===The Gambler===
 
===The Gambler===
  
Cai Wen finds himself in a dusty saloon, with a piano playing a tinkling melody in the background.  He is briefly puzzled by the odd instrument, but quickly distracted again by the girl on his arm, who bats her long eyelashes at him and complains that he's not paying any attention to her.  Cai Wen says as soon as Old Lady Kibo arrives and he can conclude his business with her, he'll be free for the evening.  However, Old Lady Kibo is nowhere to be seen, so the girl pouts prettily.  Cai Wen buys another drink from the bartender, noting that all he seems to have in his pockets are strange round coins with no holes, and even odder pieces of paper, but the bartender seems willing to take them.  However, he's out of whiskey - it was due to arrive here in Gila-Monster Gulch on the stagecoach this morning, but the stagecoach is late.  Cai Wen, familiar with the name "Kibo", asks if Yoshi is around?  The bartender says Governor Yoshi isn't in town.   Nor is Eight-Legged Slick, another important politician, likely to be the Mayor soon.
+
Cai Wen finds himself in a dusty saloon, with a piano playing a tinkling melody in the background.  He is briefly puzzled by the odd instrument, but quickly distracted again by the girl on his arm, who bats her long eyelashes at him and complains that he's not paying any attention to her.  Cai Wen says as soon as Old Lady Kibo arrives and he can conclude his business with her, he'll be free for the evening.  However, Old Lady Kibo is nowhere to be seen, so the girl pouts prettily.  Cai Wen buys another drink from the bartender, noting that all he seems to have in his pockets are strange round coins with no holes, and even odder pieces of paper, but the bartender seems willing to take them.  However, he's out of whiskey - it was due to arrive here in Gila-Monster Gulch on the stagecoach this morning, but the stagecoach is late.  Cai Wen, familiar with the name "Kibo", asks if Yoshi is around?  The bartender says Governor Yoshi isn't in town. Neither is Eight-Legged Slick, another important politician likely to be the Mayor soon.
  
 
Cai Wen asks his moll if there's any sort of gambling going on - she says there's poker in the back room, but Cai Wen is pretty sure he's supposed to meet Old Lady Kibo out here in the front.  Still, she's nowhere to be seen, so he decides to take a look around the town.  It's not large, and beyond the few buildings is a sparse-looking countryside, with odd plants that look like pitchforks and bushes that seem to roll around.  It all seems pretty implausible, so Cai Wen figures he's probably dreaming.  Other than the saloon, there's a hotel, a sheriff's office, a stable, and a blacksmith but no sign of any stagecoach, whatever that is.
 
Cai Wen asks his moll if there's any sort of gambling going on - she says there's poker in the back room, but Cai Wen is pretty sure he's supposed to meet Old Lady Kibo out here in the front.  Still, she's nowhere to be seen, so he decides to take a look around the town.  It's not large, and beyond the few buildings is a sparse-looking countryside, with odd plants that look like pitchforks and bushes that seem to roll around.  It all seems pretty implausible, so Cai Wen figures he's probably dreaming.  Other than the saloon, there's a hotel, a sheriff's office, a stable, and a blacksmith but no sign of any stagecoach, whatever that is.
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Cai Wen heads to the stable, and asks for more details about the stagecoach.  It should have gotten in at 11 am, after passing through Ambush Gulch at 10 am and Stillville at 10:30.  That would have given its passengers plenty of time to meet the 2pm train, known as Old Reliable, which stops at the other end of town.  It's about 12:30 now.
 
Cai Wen heads to the stable, and asks for more details about the stagecoach.  It should have gotten in at 11 am, after passing through Ambush Gulch at 10 am and Stillville at 10:30.  That would have given its passengers plenty of time to meet the 2pm train, known as Old Reliable, which stops at the other end of town.  It's about 12:30 now.
  
Cai Wen rents a horse (the guy seems happy to take his odd coins), and heads out to Stillville the previous stagecoach stop, and discovers a bunch of people, impatient to meet the stagecoach which hasn't yet arrived.  Sighing, Cai Wen proceeds on to Ambush Gulch.  Sure enough, at the height of the ambush gradient, there's a stagecoach tipped over, and an unhappy looking driver.  Cai Wen remarks loudly that Here He Is To Be Ambushed and Wouldn't It Be A Shame If Anyone Leapt Out At Him, but actually, it turns out that the ambush has already been sprung, upon the stagecoach, and it isn't still waiting around to ambush Cai Wen.  The stagecoach driver says that the bandits took Old Lady Kibo away with them.
+
Cai Wen rents a horse (the guy seems happy to take his odd coins), and heads out to Stillville, the previous stagecoach stop, and discovers a bunch of people, impatient to meet the stagecoach which hasn't yet arrived.  Sighing, Cai Wen proceeds on to Ambush Gulch.  Sure enough, at the height of the ambush gradient, there's a stagecoach tipped over, and an unhappy looking driver.  Cai Wen remarks loudly that Here He Is To Be Ambushed and Wouldn't It Be A Shame If Anyone Leapt Out At Him, but actually, it turns out that the ambush has already been sprung, upon the stagecoach, and it isn't still waiting around to ambush Cai Wen.  The stagecoach driver says that the bandits took Old Lady Kibo away with them.
  
 
Cai Wen heads back to Stillville, where he recruits the guys there into a posse (though his moll has to help him with the word), and they head out on the trail of the bandits.  The trail circles around town to reach the railroad tracks, where a villainous man in black is tying Old Lady Kibo to the tracks, as the locomotive Old Reliable steams in.  The posse and the bandits fight, leaving Cai Wen to deal with the moustache-twirling villain - he manages to convince the villain to gloat over his plans to eliminate Old Lady Kibo, and then as the locomotive bears down, Cai Wen (who has no skill with ropes and knots) finds a stick of dynamite, and lights it, threatening to blow himself and the villain up together if he doesn't untie his victim.  His bluff is successful, and the villain unties her, grumbling.
 
Cai Wen heads back to Stillville, where he recruits the guys there into a posse (though his moll has to help him with the word), and they head out on the trail of the bandits.  The trail circles around town to reach the railroad tracks, where a villainous man in black is tying Old Lady Kibo to the tracks, as the locomotive Old Reliable steams in.  The posse and the bandits fight, leaving Cai Wen to deal with the moustache-twirling villain - he manages to convince the villain to gloat over his plans to eliminate Old Lady Kibo, and then as the locomotive bears down, Cai Wen (who has no skill with ropes and knots) finds a stick of dynamite, and lights it, threatening to blow himself and the villain up together if he doesn't untie his victim.  His bluff is successful, and the villain unties her, grumbling.
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The boat passes through the remnants of the mine field, to a sunken cave - the boat itself isn't able to fit in, so Shen-Ji changes into his scuba gear and tells the boat to wait for him.  He swims through the passage, and is quickly beset by Sharks with Laser Beams on their Heads.  As the sharks close in on him, he quickly analyzes the frequency of the laser, and scouts out a rock at the bottom of the passage which has the right refractive ability to affect the laser, and bounces the one shark's laser at the other, disabling it.  He then manages to lasso one of the disabled sharks with the rope from his spear gun and rides it, rodeo-style, into the hidden lair.
 
The boat passes through the remnants of the mine field, to a sunken cave - the boat itself isn't able to fit in, so Shen-Ji changes into his scuba gear and tells the boat to wait for him.  He swims through the passage, and is quickly beset by Sharks with Laser Beams on their Heads.  As the sharks close in on him, he quickly analyzes the frequency of the laser, and scouts out a rock at the bottom of the passage which has the right refractive ability to affect the laser, and bounces the one shark's laser at the other, disabling it.  He then manages to lasso one of the disabled sharks with the rope from his spear gun and rides it, rodeo-style, into the hidden lair.
  
Ditching the shark, Agent Shen-Ji climbs out of the water, and heads down a hallway towards a larger dome.  He can hear some gloating (and muffled unhappy noises) coming from the space beyond, as well as a loud and ominous Humming sound. He pretends to be delivering pizza to the thugs guarding the door and after they open the door, shoots the first two with his spear hun.  When the rest of the thugs come after him, he activates the local defense mechanisms, causing walls of iron to cut off the guards.  Climbing into the drop ceiling, Agent Shen-Ji proceeds into the dome where he sees Ambassador Kibo tied to a table with a huge laser about to cut him in half.    Shen-Ji runs to the control panel where there are two large buttons, one labeled "Off" and one labeled "Self-Destruct - Do not press."  Agent Shen-Ji stabs at the second button causing Doctor Arachnoid to shout, "Fool!  You'll kill us all!"  Then, Shen-Ji pulls the gag off of Ambassador Kibo, who tells him to get Dr. Arachnoid's monocle before they leave, as it must be delivered to Prime Minister Yoshi.  
+
Ditching the shark, Agent Shen-Ji climbs out of the water, and heads down a hallway towards a larger dome.  He can hear some gloating (and muffled unhappy noises) coming from the space beyond, as well as a loud and ominous Humming sound. He pretends to be delivering pizza to the thugs guarding the door and after they open the door, shoots the first two with his spear gun.  When the rest of the thugs come after him, he activates the local defense mechanisms, causing walls of iron to cut off the guards.  Climbing into the drop ceiling, Agent Shen-Ji proceeds into the dome where he sees Ambassador Kibo tied to a table with a huge laser about to cut him in half.    Shen-Ji runs to the control panel where there are two large buttons, one labeled "Off" and one labeled "Self-Destruct - Do not press."  Agent Shen-Ji stabs at the second button causing Doctor Arachnoid to shout, "Fool!  You'll kill us all!"  Then, Shen-Ji pulls the gag off of Ambassador Kibo, who tells him to get Dr. Arachnoid's monocle before they leave, as it must be delivered to Prime Minister Yoshi.  
  
 
Agent Shen-Ji unties Kibo and then closes on the evil Doctor Arachnoid.  Arachnoid heads for the escape chute, but Shen-Ji convinces him to gloat a bit before he departs.  This gives Shen-Ji a chance to grab the villain's monocle.  The doctor, seeing that all is lost, hops into the escape chute and rockets away leaving Kibo and Shen-Ji to their doom.  
 
Agent Shen-Ji unties Kibo and then closes on the evil Doctor Arachnoid.  Arachnoid heads for the escape chute, but Shen-Ji convinces him to gloat a bit before he departs.  This gives Shen-Ji a chance to grab the villain's monocle.  The doctor, seeing that all is lost, hops into the escape chute and rockets away leaving Kibo and Shen-Ji to their doom.  
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===The Hero===
 
===The Hero===
  
Off in the distance, Hiro hears singing: "Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to work we go," and heads in that direction.  He finds the [[Travelling_with_the_Butterfly_Prince:_Part_II#Barn_Raising|seven Tsien daughters]], though shorter than he remembers them, and now sporting odd little beards, cutting wood and arguing about whose turn it is to use the axe.    They are apparently chopping wood, as part of their construction project to build a Royal Palace for Princess Kibo.  Hiro finds it a little too disconcerting to flirt with them when they have beards on, so he heads off in the direction they indicate the Royal Palace as being in.
+
Off in the distance, Hiro hears singing: "Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to work we go," and heads in that direction.  He finds the [[Travelling_with_the_Butterfly_Prince:_Part_II#Barn_Raising|seven Tsien daughters]], though shorter than he remembers them, and now sporting odd little beards, cutting wood and arguing about whose turn it is to use the axe.    They are apparently chopping wood as part of their construction project to build a Royal Palace for Princess Kibo.  Hiro finds it a little too disconcerting to flirt with them when they have beards on, so he heads off in the direction they indicate the Royal Palace as being in.
  
 
He gets to a half-constructed wooden building, with a sign: "Royal Palace, Under Construction".  Lying in the middle of the floor is Princess Kibo, holding an apple with a single bite taken out of it.  Hiro is pretty sure that Kibo is behind this whole dream thing, so he shakes Princess Kibo for a while, telling the yumekui to wake up and take charge of the situation, but it doesn't seem to work.  Somewhat confused, Hiro heads back to the seven dwarfettes, and asks if Princess Kibo is supposed to be lying on the ground like that.  No, no, she is not.  Everyone runs back, but the girls are no more able to wake Princess Kibo up than Hiro was.  
 
He gets to a half-constructed wooden building, with a sign: "Royal Palace, Under Construction".  Lying in the middle of the floor is Princess Kibo, holding an apple with a single bite taken out of it.  Hiro is pretty sure that Kibo is behind this whole dream thing, so he shakes Princess Kibo for a while, telling the yumekui to wake up and take charge of the situation, but it doesn't seem to work.  Somewhat confused, Hiro heads back to the seven dwarfettes, and asks if Princess Kibo is supposed to be lying on the ground like that.  No, no, she is not.  Everyone runs back, but the girls are no more able to wake Princess Kibo up than Hiro was.  
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When the party reaches the castle, the drawbridge is up.  There's a guard up in a parapet - Hiro shouts up to him, asking to be let in.  The guard says he isn't supposed to let any heroes in.  Hiro claims that he's certainly not a hero - he doesn't do anything heroic at all.  Nope, not him.  With a bit of fast talk, he convinces the guard that it's okay to lower the drawbridge, and heads in - only to discover a maze of twisty passages.
 
When the party reaches the castle, the drawbridge is up.  There's a guard up in a parapet - Hiro shouts up to him, asking to be let in.  The guard says he isn't supposed to let any heroes in.  Hiro claims that he's certainly not a hero - he doesn't do anything heroic at all.  Nope, not him.  With a bit of fast talk, he convinces the guard that it's okay to lower the drawbridge, and heads in - only to discover a maze of twisty passages.
  
This seems overly complicated, so Hiro looks around for a way to get up to where the guard is.  The guard mentions that there is a staff only access door, but it's not for non-staff, and it certainly not for heroes.  Hiro protests that he is still not a hero, and again fast talks the poor guard into letting him through the door, avoiding the death maze entirely.
+
This seems overly complicated, so Hiro looks around for a way to get up to where the guard is.  The guard mentions that there is a staff only access door, but it's not for non-staff, and it is certainly not for heroes.  Hiro protests that he is still not a hero, and again fast talks the poor guard into letting him through the door, avoiding the death maze entirely.
  
 
Then, they head down the hallway marked Authorized Personnel Only, to the Throne room. The queen arrives.  She's carrying the crown, but wearing a pointy black witch's hat.  
 
Then, they head down the hallway marked Authorized Personnel Only, to the Throne room. The queen arrives.  She's carrying the crown, but wearing a pointy black witch's hat.  
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{{Q|Don't make me huff and puff this door down!  I didn't have to use it on the drawbridge, so I can totally blow this door in now!"}}
 
{{Q|Don't make me huff and puff this door down!  I didn't have to use it on the drawbridge, so I can totally blow this door in now!"}}
  
Hiro glares the wolf into admitting that okay, he tried to get the kids to visit in his guest oven, before they locked him out.  The kids say they were sent over to get a cup of sugar.  Hiro thinks this shows rather poor judgement on the part of their mother, but they protest - that's not their mother, it's their evil stepmother.  Well, that makes some more sense.  Still, it seems like sending them home isn't the right idea.  Hiro brings them back to the dwarfettes, and tells them they can be apprentice carpenters.  They give the dwarfettes their bread in trade, sealing the deal.  The dwarfettes as pleased, as a nice loaf a bread should come in handy if they ever encounter any death mazes...
+
Hiro glares the wolf into admitting that okay, he tried to get the kids to visit in his guest oven, before they locked him out.  The kids say they were sent over to get a cup of sugar.  Hiro thinks this shows rather poor judgement on the part of their mother, but they protest - that's not their mother, it's their evil stepmother.  Well, that makes some more sense.  Still, it seems like sending them home isn't the right idea.  Hiro brings them back to the dwarfettes, and tells them they can be apprentice carpenters.  They give the dwarfettes their bread in trade, sealing the deal.  The dwarfettes are pleased, as a nice loaf of bread should come in handy if they ever encounter any death mazes...
  
 
===The Refugee ===
 
===The Refugee ===
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Then, they reach the mountain pass into the White Mountains, guarded by another two octopods.  Yoshi pulls his third useful item out of his bag - a loud bullhorn, which he uses to trigger an avalanche, bringing down a pile of snow onto the octopods.  After that, they can climb over and reach Professor Kibo's laboratory.    Professor Kibo says that more octopods are coming - Yoshi needs to find the octopod controller device to stop them all.  He gives Yoshi a pinging locator device, and sends him out again to find it.
 
Then, they reach the mountain pass into the White Mountains, guarded by another two octopods.  Yoshi pulls his third useful item out of his bag - a loud bullhorn, which he uses to trigger an avalanche, bringing down a pile of snow onto the octopods.  After that, they can climb over and reach Professor Kibo's laboratory.    Professor Kibo says that more octopods are coming - Yoshi needs to find the octopod controller device to stop them all.  He gives Yoshi a pinging locator device, and sends him out again to find it.
  
Evading octopods along the way, Yoshi find a strange metal tent that the octopod controller locator is pointing too.  Inside is a single figure holding a strange device.  Yoshi sneaks up on the being (Mister Arachnus) holding the control device - the guy is basically man-shaped, but looks more like something with extra legs wearing a rubber human costume.  Yoshi is out of useful items - but he still has a bag!  He pops the bag over Mister Arachnus's head, and grapples with him, and ends up pulling off his rubber human mask revealing a spider underneath.  Mister Arachnus gloats that he can still succeed as long as he has - and then Yoshi grabs the remote controller, and escapes back to the lab, sending the octopods stomping off to drown in the river with the controller.
+
Evading octopods along the way, Yoshi find a strange metal tent that the octopod controller locator is pointing to.  Inside is a single figure holding a strange device.  Yoshi sneaks up on the being (Mister Arachnus) holding the control device - the guy is basically man-shaped, but looks more like something with extra legs wearing a rubber human costume.  Yoshi is out of useful items - but he still has a bag!  He pops the bag over Mister Arachnus's head, and grapples with him, and ends up pulling off his rubber human mask revealing a spider underneath.  Mister Arachnus gloats that he can still succeed as long as he has - and then Yoshi grabs the remote controller, and escapes back to the lab, using the controller to send the octopods stomping off to drown in the river.
  
 
At this point, Yoshi is drawn into the dreams of the others, and they give him their loot - the moustache, the monocle, and the pointy hat, which he puts in his bag with his remote controller.    After this digression, Kibo briefs him.
 
At this point, Yoshi is drawn into the dreams of the others, and they give him their loot - the moustache, the monocle, and the pointy hat, which he puts in his bag with his remote controller.    After this digression, Kibo briefs him.
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After the [[A_Note_for_You#Loose_Ends_and_Talking_Fish|incident with the talking fish]], Kibo has come somewhat to the attention of the Great Spider Spirit.  The Spider probably prefers to not act directly into the realms of dreams, lest the other Great Spirits start doing so too, but he has been ''leaning'' on the dreamworld, so that the default plots and settings tend to be strongly tilted against Kibo.  This will likely continue, and the only way to really stop it is to convince the stuff that dreams are made of, that Kibo has ''already'' been dealt with.
 
After the [[A_Note_for_You#Loose_Ends_and_Talking_Fish|incident with the talking fish]], Kibo has come somewhat to the attention of the Great Spider Spirit.  The Spider probably prefers to not act directly into the realms of dreams, lest the other Great Spirits start doing so too, but he has been ''leaning'' on the dreamworld, so that the default plots and settings tend to be strongly tilted against Kibo.  This will likely continue, and the only way to really stop it is to convince the stuff that dreams are made of, that Kibo has ''already'' been dealt with.
  
===The Conclusion===
+
===Once More Unto the Dream===
 +
Once everyone has awoken in the morning, Yoshi explains to the others that they need to use the various implements they have acquired, in some sort of plan to make it clear to the World of Dreams and/or the Spider, that Kibo has been “dealt with”.  On the plus side, there are fabulous disguises!  They might have to return to all the previous genres; Yoshi is not sure.
 +
 
 +
The group brainstorms possibilities.  Cai Wen explains about the “train” things he saw running on rails - maybe they could trick the train into plummeting off of a cliff?  Trains are apparently not very smart.  Shen-Ji suggests that the cliff could send the train into a river valley, and the river could be FILLED WITH SHARKS.  Maybe they could destroy a bridge using the mechanical octopods.  Hiro is a bit at a loss how to contribute - his dream was very foody.  Maybe there should be a picnic?
 +
 
 +
On the other hand, in those four genres the group has already visited, Kibo was saved - the new dream will probably have to be something different.  The trick will be to get them all into the same dream.  Perhaps they should pick a place to meet while dreaming - a theater?  All four costume pieces could be part of a theater.  Or maybe a romance genre - the Garden of Harmonious Contemplation, looking for Kibo!  Hiro notes that Princess Kibo was kind of weird as an object of romantic affection in his dream.  Oh, wait, this is a ‘’tragic’’ love affair with Kibo - perhaps she has to kill herself to keep them from fighting. 
 +
 
 +
Actually, isn’t the [[Temple of the Eternal Dream]] somewhat nearby?  The group makes a quick trip to the Tanzhe plain, and Shen-Ji introduces the monks to Yoshi.  Master Bao is rather suspiciuos of yumekuis, but says that what they will need to reach is a place of ‘’access’’, so that they can reach the place where Kibo is.    And, he will let them use the dreamwalking biers.
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|As you lie upon the biers, think of being very heavy, or very light - all together, not both or mixed.|Master Bao}}
 +
 
 +
Yoshi suggests that everyone think of light, and they all float - up and up and up into darkness.
 +
 
 +
===Spacewalk===
 +
Then, they are all floating in darkness, but feeling constricted and wearing heavy suits.  Cai Wen and Hiro remember to hold onto their tethers - Shen-Ji and Yoshi, on the other hand, are beginning to float away.  Off through the distance is a huge metal building, all alone in the night, with a name on the side: Babylon 8. 
 +
 
 +
Hiro launches himself at Yoshi's dropped rope, and manages to throw it to Yoshi, who tangles it around his leg.  Shen-Ji finds his suit thrusters, and heads over to Cai Wen.  Once all together, they manage to reel themselves in on their tethers, to an "airlock".  Whatever that is.  Then, a strange voice sounds in their heads, prefaced with a "kchh" noise. 
 +
 
 +
{{Q|*kchh*.  Maintenance team, what's your status?}}
 +
{{QQ|*kchh* We're all done.  You can open the door and let us in.|Hiro}}
 +
 
 +
The door in the side of the metal building opens, and they go into what appears to be a very small, empty room.  Happily, they figure out how to work the controls, and shut the first door before opening the second. 
 +
 
 +
Once they emerge into the hallway, there is a tentacle-faced creature, making confusing noises at them.  Cai Wen says the thing he expects to hear, which is that they have finished the repairs. 
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|Did we actually repair anything?|Yoshi}}
 +
{{QQ|Maybe we did that before we showed up.|Hiro}}
 +
{{Q|I '''hope''' so.}}
 +
 
 +
As the group starts to take off their big suits, they find that they have Earthforce/Babylon 8 uniforms on underneath.  With no immediate direction, they follow a sign to the "Zocalo", which seems to be a tavern with strange demons in it, like the [[Night of Gates]] party.  Cai Wen immediately gravitates towards a group of people playing something called "dabo". 
 +
 
 +
There's no obvious sign of Kibo, but upon more thorough investigation, the party comes across a sign warning the denizens of the zocalo that there should be no partying after 8pm, signed by the Babylon 8 Advisory Committee, including Captain Sinclair, Ambassador Mollari, and Ambassador Kibo.   
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|Ah, Ambassador Kibo is '''your''' genre|Yoshi to Shen-Ji}}
 +
 
 +
Shen-Ji tries to figure out where the important people are, and follows the High Society gradient to another area of the station.  Guards attempt to block them, but Hiro convinces them that there's maintenance work that needs doing.    Shen-Ji finds a schematic map that indicates that ambassadorial quarters are on "Level 2", and with a lucky Tao roll, Hiro talks the turbolift into taking them there. 
 +
 
 +
Once they arrive, they're quickly intercepted - they're late!  They're handed trays with food, to pass out to the five beings (people and demons?) sitting at the table arguing.
 +
 
 +
One of the ambassadors is arguing that there should be a complete trade embargo against the Vorlon Empire.  Another ambassador protests - they don't trade with us to begin with.  Well, exactly!  Maybe they should kick him out of the council altogether!  No, they should wait until the ambassador shows up, to discuss it.  Well, it's not like he'll be on '''time'''.  The argument continues as the dreamers circulate, acting as servants, and eying the empty ambassador's seat.  In general, the humans seem to think that calling for an embargo is inappropriate, but the demons think the Vorlons are trouble and should be expelled.
 +
 
 +
Hiro decides it's time to be proactive, manages to pass out all his drinks, and heads out to "get more drinks".  He finds a sign to the ambassadorial wing, and heads in that direction.  There is another airlock at the entrance to Ambassdor Kibo's quarters, which is somewhat disconcerting, but there aren't any big suits there, just a breathing mask.  Hiro puts it on, and goes in. 
 +
 
 +
Inside, there is a creature in a large black suit, with an armored section for a Kibo-like snout.
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|YOU ARE TOO SOON.|Ambassador Kibo}}
 +
{{QQ|Okay... I thought maybe we should plan or something.|Hiro}}
 +
{{Q|WHO ARE YOU?}}
 +
{{Q|I'm Hiro!}}
 +
 
 +
Back in the council chamber, the demons have forced a vote, and they outnumber the humans, so Ambassador Kibo is de-ambassadored.  The eight demon-aides chuckle, and go off into the corner.  One speaks into a device from his belt: "He's not protected any more.  Go to his quarters and kill him."
 +
 
 +
In his quarters, Kibo seems to sense that something is up.
 +
 
 +
{{Q|SOON.  IT IS THE HOUR OF SCAMPERING.}}
 +
{{Q|Okay... where should we scamper to?  We need the big suits to go outside.}}
 +
 
 +
The rest of the group dashes towards the ambassadorial quarters, and spots a group of giant black spiky spider-creatures going into the airlock.    They remember that they can tell Hiro, by prefacing what they say with "Kchh". 
 +
 
 +
Hiro suggests that Kibo fake his death, while Yoshi uses the remote octopod controller to set the "octopods" to "slow".  Inside, the now very slow spiders phase through the wall, menacing Hiro and Ambassador Kibo very very slowly.
 +
 
 +
Yoshi puts the moustache on over his mask, and pushes the joystick on the spider controller to send them sideways.    He claims to the spiders that they will take care of Ambassador Kibo, taking him "to our lair to slowly digest him!"  As Yoshi is not very good at lying, he is utterly unconvincing, and the spiders start closing in on Yoshi while his octopod controller starts to overheat.    Cai Wen steps in, declaring that they will blow him up with the dynamite instead.  He lights it, and holds it to the wall, hoping that it's an outside bulkhead.  The spiders flee, as does the group, leaving the dynamite to go off in an earth-shattering Kaboom.
 +
 
 +
Emergency alarms go off, and Kibo is shuffled into a maintenance closet (after some failed attempts to disguise him with a hat, or fit him in Yoshi's bag).  In the maintenance closet, they cobble together a bigger disguise with broom handles, sponges, and mop-tentacles, creating a very fashionable shambling-mound demon that doesn't look much like Ambassador Kibo.
 +
 
 +
When Maintenance (the real ones) show up, Hiro says that there's been an explosion in ambassador Kibo's quarters.  Maintenance discovers that the airlock won't cycle which means it's bad.  That sounds reasonably convincing.
 +
 
 +
Hiro, wearing the witch's hat, goes to check in with the eight demon-aides: "Report back.  It is done."  The other ambassadors are concerned.
 +
 
 +
{{Q|We're going to need a repair crew.}}
 +
{{Q|'''Another''' repair crew?  We just got done sending one outside to fix the reactor leak...}}
 +
 
 +
And then, the world explodes.
 +
 
 +
===Fall of the Alamo===
 +
The four dreamers fall, and fall, and fall, and finally plummet into the sun-baked dust.  Off in the distance through the desert is a large stone building.
 +
 
 +
Cai Wen and Hiro are wearing denim jeans and leather vests.  Cai Wen has a cowboy hat, while  Hiro still has the witch hat.  The other two find themselves still in their B8 uniforms.
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|My fashion sense is tingling.|Yoshi}}
 +
 
 +
The group proceeds to the walls of the building, and waves to get in.
 +
 
 +
{{Q|Who goes there?}}
 +
{{QQ|Who the hell are you to ask me that?|Cai Wen}}
 +
{{Q|Captain, we got some more volunteers.}}
 +
 
 +
The group is let in - the embattled defenders could use “a couple more guns”.  The captain wants to know how they learned about their plight; Hiro says that they are Wandering Heroes.  Well, in that case, they probably want to talk to Kibo Crockett.  He’s a wandering hero too. 
 +
 
 +
Kibo Crockett briefs the group in more detail - Octo Anna’s forces are surrounding the fortress, and soon they’re going to storm the walls and kill everyone. 
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|You know we’re here for you?|Hiro}}
 +
{{QQ|Yup, ssh!|Kibo}}
 +
 
 +
After briefly trying to figure out how to save the Alamo, the group remembers that no, they’re supposed to make sure Kibo “dies”, and plot a death scene. 
 +
 
 +
Yoshi fills his useful bag with wine, and some jelly from Hiro’s jelly sandwiches are added, to make some semi-plausible blood to spurt.  Shen-Ji puts on the monocle to impersonate a doctor, and Yoshi puts on the moustache, to make him look like a general assassin-type villain on the side of Octo Anna.
 +
 
 +
Cai Wen plays with the octopod controller, once he realizes that the soldiers on the outside are more like eight-legged creatures than people on horses, and finds himself playing breakout against the wall, deciding where to protect and where to chip away.
 +
 
 +
Yoshi, summoning his Danger Chef reserves, “stabs” Kibo, causing jelly-wine to spurt dramatically.  Again, his heart isn’t really in the deception, but the dramatic spurting is good. 
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|Kibo Crockett is dead!|Hiro}}
 +
{{QQ|Noooooo!  He’s dead, Jim.|Shen-Ji (As it turns out, Jim Bowie is right nearby.)}}
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|I apprehend the criminal.|Hiro}}
 +
{{QQ|Good, because I don’t want to stand here awkwardly any more.|Yoshi}}
 +
 
 +
Once Yoshi is apprehended, the next steps are a little unclear - which team is Hiro supposed to be on?
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|You were in disguise - you were actually apprehending me to ‘’’evil’’’ safety.|Yoshi}}
 +
{{QQ|Yeah, Someone needs to take over the diabolical laughter, because you’re really bad at that.|Hiro}}
 +
 
 +
Cai Wen manages to drive the octo-soldier forces around, exterminating everyone except the disguised PCs and Kibo Crockett, who is already “dead”, leaving a fortress full of dream-corpse strewn dramatically around. 
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|Job well done.  Who wants sandwiches?|Yoshi}}
 +
 
 +
They have a picnic in the wreckage of the Alamo. 
 +
 
 +
{{QQ|Why haven’t we left yet?|Hiro}}
 +
{{QQ|Oh, did you want to go?  Here are some horses.  Sunset is that way. |Kibo}}
 +
 
 +
The party quickly rides off into the sunset, and wakes up on the biers. 
 +
 
 +
Master Bao asks if they found their journey enlightening, but they are not sure.  Did they win?  Why were there just two genres?  They’re a little confused.    Yoshi also wants to pass a last message along to Kibo, which Master Bao says he will make sure the yumekui receives:
 +
 
 +
{{Q|You’ve shown a lot of initiative and self-direction and changed a lot.  If you continue on this path of redemption, you’ll become something other than what you started as.  If you’ve reached such a point, then that could assist you in the difficulty you are currently facing. }}
  
 
===Puttering===
 
===Puttering===
Line 97: Line 223:
 
* Lijuan and possibly Anto visit the [[Hand of the Wind]] monastery.  (Master Zhou and Xiao Fa are probably still there).  
 
* Lijuan and possibly Anto visit the [[Hand of the Wind]] monastery.  (Master Zhou and Xiao Fa are probably still there).  
 
* Cai Wen, Xiao Fa, and Min Feng visit the Third Spire in the City of Spires.
 
* Cai Wen, Xiao Fa, and Min Feng visit the Third Spire in the City of Spires.
 
+
* Takanata chats with the [[Five Fists of Fury]], and separately with Duke Lan.
 
[[Category:Book Two Logs]]
 
[[Category:Book Two Logs]]

Latest revision as of 10:34, 7 December 2012

"Now I do not know whether I was then a man dreaming I was a butterfly, or whether I am now a butterfly, dreaming I am a man." The run begins at night, shortly after the conclusion of the previous run.

The run takes place in a number of implausible locations in the World of Dreams.

Previous Run Next Run


Contents

The Gambler

Cai Wen finds himself in a dusty saloon, with a piano playing a tinkling melody in the background. He is briefly puzzled by the odd instrument, but quickly distracted again by the girl on his arm, who bats her long eyelashes at him and complains that he's not paying any attention to her. Cai Wen says as soon as Old Lady Kibo arrives and he can conclude his business with her, he'll be free for the evening. However, Old Lady Kibo is nowhere to be seen, so the girl pouts prettily. Cai Wen buys another drink from the bartender, noting that all he seems to have in his pockets are strange round coins with no holes, and even odder pieces of paper, but the bartender seems willing to take them. However, he's out of whiskey - it was due to arrive here in Gila-Monster Gulch on the stagecoach this morning, but the stagecoach is late. Cai Wen, familiar with the name "Kibo", asks if Yoshi is around? The bartender says Governor Yoshi isn't in town. Neither is Eight-Legged Slick, another important politician likely to be the Mayor soon.

Cai Wen asks his moll if there's any sort of gambling going on - she says there's poker in the back room, but Cai Wen is pretty sure he's supposed to meet Old Lady Kibo out here in the front. Still, she's nowhere to be seen, so he decides to take a look around the town. It's not large, and beyond the few buildings is a sparse-looking countryside, with odd plants that look like pitchforks and bushes that seem to roll around. It all seems pretty implausible, so Cai Wen figures he's probably dreaming. Other than the saloon, there's a hotel, a sheriff's office, a stable, and a blacksmith but no sign of any stagecoach, whatever that is.

Cai Wen goes into the hotel and asks about getting a room. He learns that Old Lady Kibo has a reservation, and Eight-Legged Slick has a room. Cai Wen rents a room, and goes upstairs, where his moll deals with the lock on Eight-Legged Slick's door and lets him into the room. On a desk, he finds two pieces of paper with lots of places and times listed on them--apparently schedules for the stagecoach and something else called a "train". One of the stagecoach stops and one of the train stops are circled.

Cai Wen heads to the stable, and asks for more details about the stagecoach. It should have gotten in at 11 am, after passing through Ambush Gulch at 10 am and Stillville at 10:30. That would have given its passengers plenty of time to meet the 2pm train, known as Old Reliable, which stops at the other end of town. It's about 12:30 now.

Cai Wen rents a horse (the guy seems happy to take his odd coins), and heads out to Stillville, the previous stagecoach stop, and discovers a bunch of people, impatient to meet the stagecoach which hasn't yet arrived. Sighing, Cai Wen proceeds on to Ambush Gulch. Sure enough, at the height of the ambush gradient, there's a stagecoach tipped over, and an unhappy looking driver. Cai Wen remarks loudly that Here He Is To Be Ambushed and Wouldn't It Be A Shame If Anyone Leapt Out At Him, but actually, it turns out that the ambush has already been sprung, upon the stagecoach, and it isn't still waiting around to ambush Cai Wen. The stagecoach driver says that the bandits took Old Lady Kibo away with them.

Cai Wen heads back to Stillville, where he recruits the guys there into a posse (though his moll has to help him with the word), and they head out on the trail of the bandits. The trail circles around town to reach the railroad tracks, where a villainous man in black is tying Old Lady Kibo to the tracks, as the locomotive Old Reliable steams in. The posse and the bandits fight, leaving Cai Wen to deal with the moustache-twirling villain - he manages to convince the villain to gloat over his plans to eliminate Old Lady Kibo, and then as the locomotive bears down, Cai Wen (who has no skill with ropes and knots) finds a stick of dynamite, and lights it, threatening to blow himself and the villain up together if he doesn't untie his victim. His bluff is successful, and the villain unties her, grumbling.

Old Lady Kibo escapes from the rails just before the train passes, and pulls the villain's moustache off, revealing him to be none other than Eight-Legged Slick. She gives the moustache to Cai Wen, telling him "Give this to Governor Yoshi!" before everything goes somewhat cloudy.

The Agent

Shen-Ji hears the doorbell ring, and answers the door to discover a man in uniform, with a clipboard. He has two packages to deliver - "Sign here, please." Shen-Ji confirms that there are, in fact, two packages for him, before signing. The first package has a strange box inside, which when a button is pressed, starts talking.

"Agent Shen-Ji. Your mission, if you choose to accept it - well, actually, you should just accept it, no goofing off this time and saying you don't accept the mission, that's a bad idea. So let's just say your mission, when you accept it, is to rescue Ambassador Kibo from the underwater lair of Dr. Arachnoid. This message will self-destruct in five seconds. Five... four... three... two... one..."

At this point, Shen-Ji tosses the box up into the air where it explodes.

He then opens the next box. It contains a lot of equipment, from scuba gear to a spear gun to a waterproof tuxedo. He kits himself out and heads to the waterfront. There are two boat companies operating out of the waterfront - Local and Knowledgeable Sea Guides, and Babes in Bikinis. Agent Shen-Ji hires a cruise from the latter company, and the boat heads out somewhat randomly vaguely in the direction of Dr. Arachnoid's underwater lair. It soon blunders into a section of ocean studded with mines, but Shen-Ji is able to use a magnetic projector (that is, his Manipulate Metal shtick) to send a small wrench out to bang one of the mines into another. It explodes, setting off a chain reaction of explosions, clearing enough of the mine field that the boat can proceed through.

The boat passes through the remnants of the mine field, to a sunken cave - the boat itself isn't able to fit in, so Shen-Ji changes into his scuba gear and tells the boat to wait for him. He swims through the passage, and is quickly beset by Sharks with Laser Beams on their Heads. As the sharks close in on him, he quickly analyzes the frequency of the laser, and scouts out a rock at the bottom of the passage which has the right refractive ability to affect the laser, and bounces the one shark's laser at the other, disabling it. He then manages to lasso one of the disabled sharks with the rope from his spear gun and rides it, rodeo-style, into the hidden lair.

Ditching the shark, Agent Shen-Ji climbs out of the water, and heads down a hallway towards a larger dome. He can hear some gloating (and muffled unhappy noises) coming from the space beyond, as well as a loud and ominous Humming sound. He pretends to be delivering pizza to the thugs guarding the door and after they open the door, shoots the first two with his spear gun. When the rest of the thugs come after him, he activates the local defense mechanisms, causing walls of iron to cut off the guards. Climbing into the drop ceiling, Agent Shen-Ji proceeds into the dome where he sees Ambassador Kibo tied to a table with a huge laser about to cut him in half. Shen-Ji runs to the control panel where there are two large buttons, one labeled "Off" and one labeled "Self-Destruct - Do not press." Agent Shen-Ji stabs at the second button causing Doctor Arachnoid to shout, "Fool! You'll kill us all!" Then, Shen-Ji pulls the gag off of Ambassador Kibo, who tells him to get Dr. Arachnoid's monocle before they leave, as it must be delivered to Prime Minister Yoshi.

Agent Shen-Ji unties Kibo and then closes on the evil Doctor Arachnoid. Arachnoid heads for the escape chute, but Shen-Ji convinces him to gloat a bit before he departs. This gives Shen-Ji a chance to grab the villain's monocle. The doctor, seeing that all is lost, hops into the escape chute and rockets away leaving Kibo and Shen-Ji to their doom.

Luckily, Shen-Ji pocketed the Shark Controller when searching the thugs he disabled, so he summons a pair of shark to swim them out through the underwater passage. They manage to escape just at the lair explodes and find themselves washed up on a beach. The very same beach where Shen-Ji's boat landed. Shen-Ji and Ambassador Kibo join the beach party in progress.

The Hero

Off in the distance, Hiro hears singing: "Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to work we go," and heads in that direction. He finds the seven Tsien daughters, though shorter than he remembers them, and now sporting odd little beards, cutting wood and arguing about whose turn it is to use the axe. They are apparently chopping wood as part of their construction project to build a Royal Palace for Princess Kibo. Hiro finds it a little too disconcerting to flirt with them when they have beards on, so he heads off in the direction they indicate the Royal Palace as being in.

He gets to a half-constructed wooden building, with a sign: "Royal Palace, Under Construction". Lying in the middle of the floor is Princess Kibo, holding an apple with a single bite taken out of it. Hiro is pretty sure that Kibo is behind this whole dream thing, so he shakes Princess Kibo for a while, telling the yumekui to wake up and take charge of the situation, but it doesn't seem to work. Somewhat confused, Hiro heads back to the seven dwarfettes, and asks if Princess Kibo is supposed to be lying on the ground like that. No, no, she is not. Everyone runs back, but the girls are no more able to wake Princess Kibo up than Hiro was.

Somehow it is decided that Hiro should go to the castle of Queen Arachnea, and see if he can't get an antidote. The girls pack Useful Items for Hiro - sandwiches, a stout bow, a katana, and four other unspecified useful things. And, also, the dwarfettes suggest that Hiro bring a pail of water from the well in back. He goes to draw the water from the well, and notes a shiny gold coin sitting on the edge of the well. Leaving it there, he lowers the bucket, draws up a pailful of water - and then the rope breaks, leaving him with a bucket of water. Hmm. He decides that a bucket is a little impractical for adventuring with, and pours the water into a canteen, declaring that to be another of the Useful Items.

Then, Hiro heads off along the path towards Queen Arachnea's castle. Out of the shadows of the woods along the path emerges an elderly woman with great big eyes and teeth. The old woman invites Hiro down to her house for lunch. Hiro, quickly determining that this old woman is some sort of wolf demon in disguise, tricks him into agreeing that since his disguise has been seen through, he is already defeated. Hiro declares that since the wolf has been defeated, he must come along with Hiro to Queen Arachnea's castle to get a heart to eat up the Queen. The wolf complains that Queen Arachnea is very dry and bony, but Hiro says he'll get her wet first.

Next, two children wander out of the woods. They are apparently lost, despite having taken a loaf of bread with them to help them find their way back home. The wolf tries to get them to come back and taste his gingerbread house, but Hiro will have none of that - the children should definitely not go inside gingerbread houses unless explicit terms are quite clearly specified beforehand. Hiro says they can come with him until he can sort out where they belong.

When the party reaches the castle, the drawbridge is up. There's a guard up in a parapet - Hiro shouts up to him, asking to be let in. The guard says he isn't supposed to let any heroes in. Hiro claims that he's certainly not a hero - he doesn't do anything heroic at all. Nope, not him. With a bit of fast talk, he convinces the guard that it's okay to lower the drawbridge, and heads in - only to discover a maze of twisty passages.

This seems overly complicated, so Hiro looks around for a way to get up to where the guard is. The guard mentions that there is a staff only access door, but it's not for non-staff, and it is certainly not for heroes. Hiro protests that he is still not a hero, and again fast talks the poor guard into letting him through the door, avoiding the death maze entirely.

Then, they head down the hallway marked Authorized Personnel Only, to the Throne room. The queen arrives. She's carrying the crown, but wearing a pointy black witch's hat.

Hiro claims to be a poison salesman, reassuring the Queen that he's not a hero - would a hero use poison? He admits that there was an Unfortunate Incident in a recent village, in which he was forced to drink some of his own antidotes, so he's come here in the hopes that he can get some replacements from the Queen. She's somewhat suspicious - that sounds like the sort of thing a hero would want - but Hiro assures her that he's here to barter for an antidote (unheroic and mercenary) rather than fight her (heroic). Well, that seems plausible. Hiro says he's got some Water of Youth and Immortality that he's willing to trade.

Queen Arachnea asks which poison Hiro needs the antidote for, throwing him for a loop - he doesn't know! It was a poisoned apple, but that might give it away, and surely it's not just "apple poison." Hiro improvises - he's not sure what the official name for it is, his family always just used nicknames, but - it's the poison that makes you fall into a deep sleep. The Queen is briefly suspicious again, but Hiro is very charming and anti-heroic, so she identifies it as, in fact, "apple poison". Hiro gives her the canteen of water, and the Queen tells him that the only antidote to apple poison is the kiss of a hero. Hiro allows as that's kind of a trick, since she's not trading it to him, but that's his fault for not being more specific in the trade.

She drinks the water, and then makes a dismayed face - this is wishing well water! Noooo! She starts melting and the the wolf promptly gobbles her up, leaving only her hat, which Hiro takes as loot.

Off the group heads, back to the Royal Palace - now nearly completed ("Royal Palace: Opening Soon") where Hiro kisses Princess Kibo. She wakes up, flutters her eyelashes, and tells him to "make sure to give the hat to King Yoshi."

Hiro decides there are more errands that need doing first, so he asks the dwarfettes if they know where the kids live. They do, in fact, know where the bakery is, and give the kids directions. The two kids head off, waving, and the wolf also goes home.

Later, Hiro decides to drop by the bakery himself, but the baker's wife tells him that the kids have been sent to get a cup of sugar from the neighbor. Hiro heads in that direction, only to discover the neighbor lives in the gingerbread house and is the wolf-demon. Strangely, the wolf has been locked out of his house, and is beginning to get angry:

"Don't make me huff and puff this door down! I didn't have to use it on the drawbridge, so I can totally blow this door in now!""

Hiro glares the wolf into admitting that okay, he tried to get the kids to visit in his guest oven, before they locked him out. The kids say they were sent over to get a cup of sugar. Hiro thinks this shows rather poor judgement on the part of their mother, but they protest - that's not their mother, it's their evil stepmother. Well, that makes some more sense. Still, it seems like sending them home isn't the right idea. Hiro brings them back to the dwarfettes, and tells them they can be apprentice carpenters. They give the dwarfettes their bread in trade, sealing the deal. The dwarfettes are pleased, as a nice loaf of bread should come in handy if they ever encounter any death mazes...

The Refugee

Yoshi finds himself hiding behind a bush with another man, listening to ominous sounds off in the distance - a muted clanking. Off on the horizon, huge metal eight-legged shapes march forward, snatching people up and flinging them about. The octopods are everywhere - the other man tells him that they have to get to the White Mountains, to talk to Professor Kibo. It's on the other side of the Blue River and the boundary forest, so it'll be a bit of a trek.

After the octopods go by, the pair starts creeping forward. Yoshi finds he has a bag of Three Useful Items - the first one proves to be an inflatable life raft, possibly of use in crossing the Blue River. Unfortunately, there are several octopods standing on the only bridge across the river, and when the raft begins to inflate, their attention is quickly drawn. Yoshi launches the raft downstream with no one in it, and the octopods pursue it, leaving the two to cross the bridge in the distraction.

Similarly, the pair manages to get through the boundary forest by using another useful item from the bag to distract the octopods patrolling the area.

Then, they reach the mountain pass into the White Mountains, guarded by another two octopods. Yoshi pulls his third useful item out of his bag - a loud bullhorn, which he uses to trigger an avalanche, bringing down a pile of snow onto the octopods. After that, they can climb over and reach Professor Kibo's laboratory. Professor Kibo says that more octopods are coming - Yoshi needs to find the octopod controller device to stop them all. He gives Yoshi a pinging locator device, and sends him out again to find it.

Evading octopods along the way, Yoshi find a strange metal tent that the octopod controller locator is pointing to. Inside is a single figure holding a strange device. Yoshi sneaks up on the being (Mister Arachnus) holding the control device - the guy is basically man-shaped, but looks more like something with extra legs wearing a rubber human costume. Yoshi is out of useful items - but he still has a bag! He pops the bag over Mister Arachnus's head, and grapples with him, and ends up pulling off his rubber human mask revealing a spider underneath. Mister Arachnus gloats that he can still succeed as long as he has - and then Yoshi grabs the remote controller, and escapes back to the lab, using the controller to send the octopods stomping off to drown in the river.

At this point, Yoshi is drawn into the dreams of the others, and they give him their loot - the moustache, the monocle, and the pointy hat, which he puts in his bag with his remote controller. After this digression, Kibo briefs him.

After the incident with the talking fish, Kibo has come somewhat to the attention of the Great Spider Spirit. The Spider probably prefers to not act directly into the realms of dreams, lest the other Great Spirits start doing so too, but he has been leaning on the dreamworld, so that the default plots and settings tend to be strongly tilted against Kibo. This will likely continue, and the only way to really stop it is to convince the stuff that dreams are made of, that Kibo has already been dealt with.

Once More Unto the Dream

Once everyone has awoken in the morning, Yoshi explains to the others that they need to use the various implements they have acquired, in some sort of plan to make it clear to the World of Dreams and/or the Spider, that Kibo has been “dealt with”. On the plus side, there are fabulous disguises! They might have to return to all the previous genres; Yoshi is not sure.

The group brainstorms possibilities. Cai Wen explains about the “train” things he saw running on rails - maybe they could trick the train into plummeting off of a cliff? Trains are apparently not very smart. Shen-Ji suggests that the cliff could send the train into a river valley, and the river could be FILLED WITH SHARKS. Maybe they could destroy a bridge using the mechanical octopods. Hiro is a bit at a loss how to contribute - his dream was very foody. Maybe there should be a picnic?

On the other hand, in those four genres the group has already visited, Kibo was saved - the new dream will probably have to be something different. The trick will be to get them all into the same dream. Perhaps they should pick a place to meet while dreaming - a theater? All four costume pieces could be part of a theater. Or maybe a romance genre - the Garden of Harmonious Contemplation, looking for Kibo! Hiro notes that Princess Kibo was kind of weird as an object of romantic affection in his dream. Oh, wait, this is a ‘’tragic’’ love affair with Kibo - perhaps she has to kill herself to keep them from fighting.

Actually, isn’t the Temple of the Eternal Dream somewhat nearby? The group makes a quick trip to the Tanzhe plain, and Shen-Ji introduces the monks to Yoshi. Master Bao is rather suspiciuos of yumekuis, but says that what they will need to reach is a place of ‘’access’’, so that they can reach the place where Kibo is. And, he will let them use the dreamwalking biers.

"As you lie upon the biers, think of being very heavy, or very light - all together, not both or mixed." -Master Bao

Yoshi suggests that everyone think of light, and they all float - up and up and up into darkness.

Spacewalk

Then, they are all floating in darkness, but feeling constricted and wearing heavy suits. Cai Wen and Hiro remember to hold onto their tethers - Shen-Ji and Yoshi, on the other hand, are beginning to float away. Off through the distance is a huge metal building, all alone in the night, with a name on the side: Babylon 8.

Hiro launches himself at Yoshi's dropped rope, and manages to throw it to Yoshi, who tangles it around his leg. Shen-Ji finds his suit thrusters, and heads over to Cai Wen. Once all together, they manage to reel themselves in on their tethers, to an "airlock". Whatever that is. Then, a strange voice sounds in their heads, prefaced with a "kchh" noise.

"*kchh*. Maintenance team, what's your status?"
"*kchh* We're all done. You can open the door and let us in." -Hiro

The door in the side of the metal building opens, and they go into what appears to be a very small, empty room. Happily, they figure out how to work the controls, and shut the first door before opening the second.

Once they emerge into the hallway, there is a tentacle-faced creature, making confusing noises at them. Cai Wen says the thing he expects to hear, which is that they have finished the repairs.

"Did we actually repair anything?" -Yoshi
"Maybe we did that before we showed up." -Hiro
"I hope so."

As the group starts to take off their big suits, they find that they have Earthforce/Babylon 8 uniforms on underneath. With no immediate direction, they follow a sign to the "Zocalo", which seems to be a tavern with strange demons in it, like the Night of Gates party. Cai Wen immediately gravitates towards a group of people playing something called "dabo".

There's no obvious sign of Kibo, but upon more thorough investigation, the party comes across a sign warning the denizens of the zocalo that there should be no partying after 8pm, signed by the Babylon 8 Advisory Committee, including Captain Sinclair, Ambassador Mollari, and Ambassador Kibo.

"Ah, Ambassador Kibo is your genre" -Yoshi to Shen-Ji

Shen-Ji tries to figure out where the important people are, and follows the High Society gradient to another area of the station. Guards attempt to block them, but Hiro convinces them that there's maintenance work that needs doing. Shen-Ji finds a schematic map that indicates that ambassadorial quarters are on "Level 2", and with a lucky Tao roll, Hiro talks the turbolift into taking them there.

Once they arrive, they're quickly intercepted - they're late! They're handed trays with food, to pass out to the five beings (people and demons?) sitting at the table arguing.

One of the ambassadors is arguing that there should be a complete trade embargo against the Vorlon Empire. Another ambassador protests - they don't trade with us to begin with. Well, exactly! Maybe they should kick him out of the council altogether! No, they should wait until the ambassador shows up, to discuss it. Well, it's not like he'll be on time. The argument continues as the dreamers circulate, acting as servants, and eying the empty ambassador's seat. In general, the humans seem to think that calling for an embargo is inappropriate, but the demons think the Vorlons are trouble and should be expelled.

Hiro decides it's time to be proactive, manages to pass out all his drinks, and heads out to "get more drinks". He finds a sign to the ambassadorial wing, and heads in that direction. There is another airlock at the entrance to Ambassdor Kibo's quarters, which is somewhat disconcerting, but there aren't any big suits there, just a breathing mask. Hiro puts it on, and goes in.

Inside, there is a creature in a large black suit, with an armored section for a Kibo-like snout.

"YOU ARE TOO SOON." -Ambassador Kibo
"Okay... I thought maybe we should plan or something." -Hiro
"WHO ARE YOU?"
"I'm Hiro!"

Back in the council chamber, the demons have forced a vote, and they outnumber the humans, so Ambassador Kibo is de-ambassadored. The eight demon-aides chuckle, and go off into the corner. One speaks into a device from his belt: "He's not protected any more. Go to his quarters and kill him."

In his quarters, Kibo seems to sense that something is up.

"SOON. IT IS THE HOUR OF SCAMPERING."
"Okay... where should we scamper to? We need the big suits to go outside."

The rest of the group dashes towards the ambassadorial quarters, and spots a group of giant black spiky spider-creatures going into the airlock. They remember that they can tell Hiro, by prefacing what they say with "Kchh".

Hiro suggests that Kibo fake his death, while Yoshi uses the remote octopod controller to set the "octopods" to "slow". Inside, the now very slow spiders phase through the wall, menacing Hiro and Ambassador Kibo very very slowly.

Yoshi puts the moustache on over his mask, and pushes the joystick on the spider controller to send them sideways. He claims to the spiders that they will take care of Ambassador Kibo, taking him "to our lair to slowly digest him!" As Yoshi is not very good at lying, he is utterly unconvincing, and the spiders start closing in on Yoshi while his octopod controller starts to overheat. Cai Wen steps in, declaring that they will blow him up with the dynamite instead. He lights it, and holds it to the wall, hoping that it's an outside bulkhead. The spiders flee, as does the group, leaving the dynamite to go off in an earth-shattering Kaboom.

Emergency alarms go off, and Kibo is shuffled into a maintenance closet (after some failed attempts to disguise him with a hat, or fit him in Yoshi's bag). In the maintenance closet, they cobble together a bigger disguise with broom handles, sponges, and mop-tentacles, creating a very fashionable shambling-mound demon that doesn't look much like Ambassador Kibo.

When Maintenance (the real ones) show up, Hiro says that there's been an explosion in ambassador Kibo's quarters. Maintenance discovers that the airlock won't cycle which means it's bad. That sounds reasonably convincing.

Hiro, wearing the witch's hat, goes to check in with the eight demon-aides: "Report back. It is done." The other ambassadors are concerned.

"We're going to need a repair crew."
"Another repair crew? We just got done sending one outside to fix the reactor leak..."

And then, the world explodes.

Fall of the Alamo

The four dreamers fall, and fall, and fall, and finally plummet into the sun-baked dust. Off in the distance through the desert is a large stone building.

Cai Wen and Hiro are wearing denim jeans and leather vests. Cai Wen has a cowboy hat, while Hiro still has the witch hat. The other two find themselves still in their B8 uniforms.

"My fashion sense is tingling." -Yoshi

The group proceeds to the walls of the building, and waves to get in.

"Who goes there?"
"Who the hell are you to ask me that?" -Cai Wen
"Captain, we got some more volunteers."

The group is let in - the embattled defenders could use “a couple more guns”. The captain wants to know how they learned about their plight; Hiro says that they are Wandering Heroes. Well, in that case, they probably want to talk to Kibo Crockett. He’s a wandering hero too.

Kibo Crockett briefs the group in more detail - Octo Anna’s forces are surrounding the fortress, and soon they’re going to storm the walls and kill everyone.

"You know we’re here for you?" -Hiro
"Yup, ssh!" -Kibo

After briefly trying to figure out how to save the Alamo, the group remembers that no, they’re supposed to make sure Kibo “dies”, and plot a death scene.

Yoshi fills his useful bag with wine, and some jelly from Hiro’s jelly sandwiches are added, to make some semi-plausible blood to spurt. Shen-Ji puts on the monocle to impersonate a doctor, and Yoshi puts on the moustache, to make him look like a general assassin-type villain on the side of Octo Anna.

Cai Wen plays with the octopod controller, once he realizes that the soldiers on the outside are more like eight-legged creatures than people on horses, and finds himself playing breakout against the wall, deciding where to protect and where to chip away.

Yoshi, summoning his Danger Chef reserves, “stabs” Kibo, causing jelly-wine to spurt dramatically. Again, his heart isn’t really in the deception, but the dramatic spurting is good.

"Kibo Crockett is dead!" -Hiro
"Noooooo! He’s dead, Jim." -Shen-Ji (As it turns out, Jim Bowie is right nearby.)
"I apprehend the criminal." -Hiro
"Good, because I don’t want to stand here awkwardly any more." -Yoshi

Once Yoshi is apprehended, the next steps are a little unclear - which team is Hiro supposed to be on?

"You were in disguise - you were actually apprehending me to ‘’’evil’’’ safety." -Yoshi
"Yeah, Someone needs to take over the diabolical laughter, because you’re really bad at that." -Hiro

Cai Wen manages to drive the octo-soldier forces around, exterminating everyone except the disguised PCs and Kibo Crockett, who is already “dead”, leaving a fortress full of dream-corpse strewn dramatically around.

"Job well done. Who wants sandwiches?" -Yoshi

They have a picnic in the wreckage of the Alamo.

"Why haven’t we left yet?" -Hiro
"Oh, did you want to go? Here are some horses. Sunset is that way. " -Kibo

The party quickly rides off into the sunset, and wakes up on the biers.

Master Bao asks if they found their journey enlightening, but they are not sure. Did they win? Why were there just two genres? They’re a little confused. Yoshi also wants to pass a last message along to Kibo, which Master Bao says he will make sure the yumekui receives:

"You’ve shown a lot of initiative and self-direction and changed a lot. If you continue on this path of redemption, you’ll become something other than what you started as. If you’ve reached such a point, then that could assist you in the difficulty you are currently facing. "

Puttering

  • Cai Wen visits the Song family estates.
  • Lijuan and possibly Anto visit the Hand of the Wind monastery. (Master Zhou and Xiao Fa are probably still there).
  • Cai Wen, Xiao Fa, and Min Feng visit the Third Spire in the City of Spires.
  • Takanata chats with the Five Fists of Fury, and separately with Duke Lan.