You stay very still in your hiding place, frozen in terror. Your heart pounds so loudly in your chest that you wouldn’t be surprised if they can hear it in the hallway. You try to think of a way out of your situation. Creation. You have to head towards the Gates in the Downtown Plaza. You have to get out of Yu-Shan and head to Creation.
“Svante?” the stranger calls. When you hear his voice this time, you realize suddenly that this man isn’t a stranger at all. It is one of your tutors, Akachi. You hear the sound of someone pulling a chair towards the wall. They know you are in the air ducts! You crawl away from Akachi and the Owl and towards the outside.
No, boy. You hear the Owl’s voice in your head. Head back towards the bathroom. Stay out of reach when you near the vent. Having no other real choice, you awkwardly begin to turn to head towards the bathroom, when the vent grate squeaks. Akachi pops his head into the vent.
“Maidens, how can you still fit in here?” Akachi takes a moment to untangle one of his dreadlocks that had got caught on the hinge of the vent. “Svante, let’s get out of here. We are going on a little trip. Won’t that be fun?” You stop at the sound of his voice. You like Akachi. Out of all of your teachers, he is your favorite. You remember that one time that you went swimming with dolphins in the Western Sea. You remember his showing you the great trees of the East. Other memories of all the fun times you had with Akachi flood your mind.
Be strong, boy, the owl says in your head. Turning away from Akachi was one of the most difficult things you have ever done. You begin to head back towards the bathroom.
Good. Lead him to the bathroom. I’ll take care of the rest.
“Svante! Where are you going?”
“He’s heading towards the bathroom! We can catch him there!” the Owl proclaims.
When you near the bathroom vent, you stop just out of arm’s reach. Your will wavers. Why would Akachi do anything to hurt you? He doesn’t seem to be the type to drag you out into the Wyld.
“Ah, he stopping. Svante, why don’t you come out of the vents and we can talk.” Akachi walks into the bathroom and then the bathroom door slams shut.
“Keeper? What are you doing!?” You hear the bathroom door handle jiggle.
“Svante, come out though the vent in the classroom,” The owl instructs you calmly. You cautiously open the vent and find the owl waiting for you. Your classmates stare at you in shock. You are very confused about what just happened.
The owl smoothes out his feathers and explains. “I am the Keeper of the Locks, god of all that has been locked away. And Akachi’s very existence is a rather large secret that is now locked away in the bathroom. “
“What? Keeper, let me out of here!” Akachi begins to bang on the door.
You are still very confused. Why is the Owl helping you?
The owl sighs and says “You’ll understand when you are older. Though that moment of clarity might be coming sooner than you think.”
“I’ll tell Nara-O…” Akachi threatens.
“Go ahead and tell Nara-O. I’d sure he would be greatly entertained by the story of how four thousand year old Exalt managed to get himself locked into a bathroom.”
Akachi begins to kick the bathroom door down. Both you and the owl jump, as the door slams against its frame. “I always forget how strong he is,” the owl mumbles.
“Now go, boy! I can’t hold him here for long,” the owl says, as the door slams again. You gather up your book bag and begin to head out of the classroom. Your classmates are whispering again about you, but you ignore them.
“Keeper! You are really straining the bonds of our friendship right now.”
“Oh, hush you! I’m not going to keep you in there for long. Though you haven’t paid me back the Ambrosia you owe me yet…” The owl sits back down at his desk. “Now, where were we, class? Oh yes, the Order-Conferring Trade Pattern….”
It is dark out now. Luna has raised high in the sky and lights up the streets of downtown Yu-Shan. You head towards the plaza where the Gates of the Blessed Isle are located. As usual, three Celestial Lions are guarding each of the gates.
You’ll need to find a way past them to enter.
What do you do?
- Wait for a large group to show up and sneak in with them
- Try to casually walk by the lions and bluff your way through the gate.
- Cause a distraction and sneak by while the lions are busy.
- Maybe Svante has a better idea?
Svante wins! Our boy is from the north! As you can tell, I’ll be using the other names chosen for NPCs.
You feel impatient to be on your way. Though it is night in Yu-Shan, you know that the Games of Divinity control what satellites light up the sky rather than the time of day. It is currently early afternoon in Creation. There is a lot of traffic going in and out of the Gates. Mostly groups of one or two gods, but there are traders with goods going in and out of Yu-Shan.
OOC: I had some doubts about the last scene actually. I thought about changing the Exalt’s age, but I decided to go with my original plan for the NPC and see what happens. I already had in the back of my mind that Akachi and the Owl had a pretty good friendship. If it was a fair fight, the Owl would have lost. However, the Owl is not without a bit of power himself, so he was able to take advantage of Akachi’s trust and lock him in the bathroom. Also, I think it would be rather dull for a four thousand year old exalt to be infallible. I just hope I didn’t make Akachi seem too incompetent.