The Road

[V.O. Alastor] 21

Mnemosyne. Really starting to piss me off. It’s one thing to go in pleasant with a knife behind your back, you gotta be prepared. It’s something else to make a deal in good faith with somebody you just five seconds ago called your friend and then fuck em over with a goddamn smile. I expected better from her, but she’s flashed her true colors a few times now. Liyongo, Hermes, me. She’ll do it to Pierpont too if she ain’t careful. Maybe to her own cabal, who fuckin knows. Even if she’s never talked to Caesar in her life, she’s dangerous all by herself. Buying Diamond affections with pandering so she can dick with people and going back on her agreements, she’s got no goddamn integrity and she’s taking a walk all over us. Never heard anybody spout cutesy bullshit more flagrantly in my life. ‘Admire the Silver Ladder’ my ass. Damn, if somebody went back on a deal with us like that while I was with the family she’d be dead by now, no questions asked. And I probably would’ve been the one to pull the trigger…ha.

We’ll see what happens when we hit Rome. For one thing, pretty sure I’m close to being able to open portals and hell if I intend to get on a plane ever again as long as I live. What does a Mastigos need with airplanes, come on. They’ll show up anyway, but it’s like M said. I’m the only mage the vampires’ll see, me and whoever I bring. Tough fuckin cookies, Mnemosyne.

So I tossed a clusterfuck pile of future history insanity into Flare’s head tonight. She took it okay. Dunno if she’s really absorbed it yet, though, it can take time to sort through a big mental dump like that when you’re not used to it. Probably should talk to her about it, her emotions were all over the fuckin map and we need her focused. Focused as she gets, anyway. I’d ask Artemis to do it but there’s a couple specific questions I got for her and it’s better they’re asked in private. Like why she’s still around, first of all, knowing what she knows about the Princeps. There’s a coupla reasons it could be and I need to know which one it is if I’m gonna figure her out.

…oh, yeah. Got kind of a surprise from Rhi the other night. Turns out Artemis was right about her having more of a reason than I thought. (Gave her the ‘I told you so,’ cuz why the fuck not, she deserved it.) Never thought it’d be that tough to figure out what to say to a girl, jesus christ. Weird to hear her call me Adrian, but it felt like it meant something, like she was trying to tell me she was serious. Might’ve been stupid to get into this with her but…I didn’t want to see her stop smiling, I guess. Not looking forward to the day I fuck it up and prove to her I’m exactly as much a part of the darkness as I’ve always been. Maybe I should take a look at all this in my Oneiros. Who knows, if I wake up a second time like my daimon wants, maybe that day won’t come.

Four days til the tournament. Going after Odoya’s people tomorrow, then up to Boston. Gonna need a plan to avoid getting shanked by a shitload of Seers…if they’re even up there at all. I’ll scry the site of the bombing before we get there, should be plenty of news footage to get an idea of the place, that shit was huge. Then…we’ll see what there is to see.

I don’t even know if I hope Vates was lying or not.

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[V.O. Alastor] 20

Jesus, Mary and fuckin Joseph, this place has gone to the damn dogs. M wasn’t screwin around when he said the hour was later than I thought. Don’t think even he thought it was this late. Mnemosyne just set the whole goddamn Consilium on fire and it’s the rest of us that’re gonna burn if this shit doesn’t get settled fast.

I keep thinking about what Memory Artemis said, in my future Oneiros, about her version of me being afraid of disunity. About having to tear everything down. It’s such a load of bullshit, I refuse to believe that’s the only way to make anything out of a couple hundred enfuckinlightened Awakened people. You’d think touching the Supernal every day of their miserable miraculous lives would teach them something. What do we gotta do, rip out every one of their souls until they get the memo? We get one chance on this stupid worthless planet to get it right and then we die and it’s all over. Or we ascend, I guess, but what good’s that doing the rest of these jokers?

I can feel my daimon hating what I’m considering right now. He thinks I’m a fuckin idiot and he’s probably right. He thinks giving M the Cipher’s gonna push me off the path to destiny or whatever the hell I’m supposed to be doing. Maybe he’s right about that too, I dunno. But if I can’t get to the point where what I think matters, if I can’t make a difference in the Ladder, then all of this is for nothing. M just keeps doing what he’s doing until Caesar kills him and we’re all in the shitstorm all over again. Something big has to change. And I need to be in a position to change it. And who knows, maybe M will actually listen to something I said once ever in his cocksucking scumbag life and use the Cipher to take a look at what Caesar’s doing on his fuckin lunch break.

God, the girls’ll never go for it, not in a million years. Not unless I can prove M’s innocence in Boston. If I can find hard proof he wasn’t involved, I can convince em. And convince myself besides, jesus christ. If he was involved, this whole game is over and done. But I need evidence either way. More than that, I just…need to know. Call it peace of mind if you want, or validation, whatever the fuck. I gotta know one way or the other. As soon as this Guardian job is done, it’s time to haul ass up there. Shouldn’t be too far from the training ground anyway, according to Hermes’ files. Would be better to have the girls there but if they’re busy I’ll have to go alone. Here’s hoping Mnemosyne doesn’t stall me to hell and back with Horus.

Any way you slice it, though, we’re gonna have to get the Cipher back no matter what. If Odoya thinks he can find it, that means other Seers know what he knows, we can’t leave it where it is too much longer. Even if we take him out a couple days from now and this isn’t a massive setup dick-over (which let’s face it, it probably is), they’d never trust this shit to just him. He’s got help, if nothing else, and he’s got superiors who I’m pretty sure are dangling him out on a hook to get eaten by sharks so they can bite us in the ass while our backs are turned. No way in hell is Odoya the only one with the lead here. I sure hope Hermes knows what the fuck he’s doing.

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[V.O. Alastor] 19

Y’know, if I start thinking about this shit too hard, I start wondering if me going to Mnemosyne to do business was part of how he became Princeps in the first place, like I’m just walking in my own fuckin footsteps all over again. But then I think, Adrian, you don’t know jack shit about Time yet, why don’t you just quit counting chicks before they hatch and die bloody deaths at the hands of destiny, and wait til you know what the hell you’re talking about.

So instead I’m over here quietly having a fuckin shameful heart attack over M’s message. For all his traditionalism and doing everything just the right way down to wiping his ass, he’s harder to predict than I expected. If it were me, I’d probably lie and say I knew something when I didn’t, scare the guy into talking. But if I try to call him on it, it’ll be obvious I got shit to hide. Not that he don’t know that already, but confirming it doesn’t do wonders for any cover story I might need later. Or my health, ha ha. And if he does actually know something I end up just looking like a jackass. I got Hermes to fall back on, but something tells me this is gonna be a fuckin mess no matter what. Jesus christ, this feels like getting called in by the don all over again. What are you, a spineless thug? Get it together, damn. What part of justifications are a bastion of the weak didn’t you get? What do you think your daimon’d say about all this, huh? …starting to get the feeling I could just ask him. Not that he’d tell me anything straight up, but what’s Awakening without cryptic bullshit to unravel?

Speaking of cryptic bullshit, why do I get the funny feeling Artemis is gonna stick her nose where it don’t belong worse than usual with this Rhi thing. Which is ridiculous since she’s the one ready to spread her legs at the drop of a fuckin hat. So why’s Rhi suddenly gotta have a better reason than having to look darkness in the face day after day and wanting something to take her mind off it? …still, maybe I ought to think about laying off next time. Girl’s gotta grow a backbone sometime, right? Goddammit, I just hate that look she gets whenever something fucked up happens, it’s not right. Makes me want to go tear apart whatever asshole’s responsible and make her forget the whole thing. …well, I could, but that’s no better, that’s what screwed everything over in that other timeline. She finally trusts you, dumbass. Don’t fuck it up, huh?

Oh yeah, it turns out that whole hostage thing was just a setup to whack us. Some prophecy Odoya gave his religious Sleeper nutjobs, must’ve dicked around with Time, saw an opportunity in a possibility and made it happen. Clever douchebag, I’ll give him that. Mnemosyne’d better be a good teacher, I gotta pick this up fast so it doesn’t happen again. At least the rookie proved she’s got some chops. And a mean streak. Here’s hoping that’s all it is and I won’t have to stop her doing something the whole cabal’ll regret. Don’t think she’s got her head screwed on too tight when it comes to control, not a great combination with fear and pointy fuckin objects. Still, she had enough of her shit together to keep us from blowing sky high, pretty sharp in a pinch. That’s something.

One thing we learned in all this is, Odoya’s desperate. Risking paradox, reporters and us taking prisoners just to get us out of the way. He wants the Cipher so bad he’s willing to expose his boys to do it. Tough to say we didn’t make the right choice, now. But it means Pierpont’s in a whole pile of shit if anybody finds out where that key is. Don’t think she’s got the mental defenses to keep em out, either, if they find her first. You sure as hell better think of something, Doorwarden.

Went to see Mnemosyne today. Pretty sure she knows who I am, Giovanni-wise, she likes to play the game but she ain’t too subtle about it. Which means taking her to Rome is just the icing on the cake, but since she knows I know, she probably thinks she’s got something to hold over me if she needs it. To be honest with you though, she doesn’t scare me too much. Not with that, anyway. Next to psychos like Vates and M who already know my name, almost seems like it barely matters. Anybody who decides to abuse it’s welcome to a good old-fashioned heap of pain. Now I think about it, though, it’d be nice if I could return the favor sometime. Know there’s a way to learn people’s names if I work at it. People don’t trust Mastigos for a reason, need to make it work for me. Meantime, the Bogeyman’ll be making people think they’re boned, which is the next best thing. Kinda funny how she keeps warning me about the Consilium, like I don’t already know. She’s either sincere about angling to recruit me, or she’s looking to sow some discord. Either way she can go to hell, but that doesn’t make her wrong about the Council. Guess we’ll see how our little sit-down goes.

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[V.O. Alastor] 18

I never did too well with rookies. Me and rookies, we got problems.

So this one time, one of the made guys goes to my Uncle Tony and says Tony, you owe me a favor, I want you to go tell your nephew he’s gonna take on my protégé for a while, teach him the ropes. Are you fuckin kidding me? Dump a new guy onto a hitter in the field? Kid had no talent, either, and I swear to God he almost got us landed facedown in a gutter at least once a week. Finally got rid of him when we were out on a job and he panicked and shot the wrong fuckin guy, so I curbed the stupid shitrag and gave him a good long, well-deserved beating. His pal didn’t take it so well and they called the whole thing off.

Anyway, the point is, this girl Hermes sent me’s gonna be trouble, I can tell. Goes by the name Flare, kind of a punk kid with a thing for hair dye and a sweet-ass set of wheels. As much as I wasn’t about to take on a watchdog, I’d almost’ve preferred that to this. There’s only so many reasons Hermes could’ve done this and I’m not too enamored of any of em. One is, she’s been a problem for the Order, what with their “trouble placing her” (code for either “incompetence,” “not subtle enough” or “she doesn’t fuckin follow orders”) and they’re pawning her off on us to either shape up or ship out, messily. One is, he thought somebody that obviously clueless wouldn’t raise any suspicions and he’s using the shit out of her as an unknowing mole, one he figured would get our guard down. And one is, his guess on why Odoya didn’t kill her was lip service, and what he wants is for us to figure out the real reason. Personally I wouldn’t put it past Paternoster to leave alive somebody they thought they could manipulate later. Almost gotta feel sorry for the kid, getting jerked around by everybody and God.

Truth is, I can’t be an exception, not if I want the cabal to live through the next month. The girls are gonna coddle her to hell and back, and all that’s gonna do is keep her firmly in the “needs to be babysat” zone. I’ll need to be the one to push her out the window and let her figure out how to catch herself. Kinda curious to see her in action, though, swords ain’t exactly common street fare. Wonder how good she is.

The other thing is, Artemis is gonna run her mouth eventually, and then we’ll have even bigger problems. The Guardians get their hands on the Road and M’s involvement in Boston, there’s no stopping them hanging it over our heads til fuckin Doomsday. So before that happens, I need to get into a position where I got some leverage. Could wait til M gets in touch about Rome and suck up like nobody’s business, I guess, but that don’t sit right with me. Nah, it’s Hermes I gotta focus on for now. We got a good thing goin here, rookie bullshit aside, maybe I can finagle more out of this. Not sure yet what I’ll do about M, but at least he’s legally obligated to stay the fuck out of my head. Won’t hold him off forever but it might be long enough. Long enough for us to find Vates, for me to get this destiny on the right track. Here’s hoping.

Besides, we do this right and get Odoya, M’s gonna look like a fuckin tool. And I respect the guy but damn does he deserve that. More than that…but I’m staying the hell away from Caesar and his plans. For now. Til I figure out how to live up to my own last piece of advice. Think we’re gonna need to take a quiet trip to Boston, for one thing. Which makes it time to ask Pierpont about working on Space again, because fuck airplanes and long car trips. I’d rather step into a Portal any day of the week.

One other thing. I noticed something weird about my dreams lately. And no, this ain’t about Rhi (mostly), so you can just shove it. What I noticed is, ever since that joyride through my future Oneiros, my daimon keeps showing up when I sleep. Sometimes he doesn’t even say nothin, just hangs around lurking or stalking people. Other times he’s got his usual cryptic bitching to do, about nothing in particular. He shows up even when I control my sleeping subconscious to work on other stuff. Next time maybe I’ll push his buttons until he gets pissed off, and then I can watch to see how he does that teleporting shit. (It’s not exactly training with another mage, but it lets my subconscious work through what I already sorta know, clarify it for me.) Sure would be useful tomorrow, huh?

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[V.O. Alastor] 17

These ignorant fucks. Thinking they got half an idea in their heads about Hell and what comes out of it. They’re looking into the fuckin Inferno, is what they’re doing, but they’re dressing it up in the same Sleeper trappings that feed Pandemonium and it’s pissing me off. It’s this kind of shit that perpetuates the Lie, you know? Symbolism has meaning, you dumbass freaks, and you’re polluting the Supernal with your false goddamn representation of Pandemonium’s driving forces. Actively pissing on the connection between us and the Iron Gauntlet. These people are a bunch of sick fucks with their heads screwed on wrong and I can’t fuckin wait to be the real devil that shows them the sheer magnitude of just how badly they have screwed the fuckin pooch. It’s enough to make a guy want to summon a literal demon and unleash it on these assholes. Oh, they wouldn’t die. They’d just learn their lesson the hardest way possible. And I’d laugh.

…tempting as hell. Ha. Literally. Ugh.

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[V.O. Alastor] 16

I think I’m starting to get why some Mastigos give in to the temptation to do shit like turn off pain or emotions, erase terrible memories. It’s a bitch, remembering this. What it was like. Worse than what my subconscious figured it’d be like. Not just being Asleep again, but…fuck. Not even caring enough to get out and do something about it. No, that’s not even right. I did care, I just…couldn’t…ugh. Never felt like that before in my life. Just…so empty. I could say ‘it sucks’ but I can’t do it nothing like enough justice, talking about it like this.

So why talk about it? Why remember it? Cause I realized something important, when my daimon came to get me and I figured out what was up. We get told by our mentors we’re special, we’re better, but we don’t really get it. Not til everything that’s just fuckin amazing about the Awakened soul smacks you in the face with how much of a god damn miracle we are. And you gotta figure, so many of us take it for granted after a while. You get used to being a willworker and you start using magic for stupid shit, you forget what it was like to Sleep. Well, I don’t think I’ll be forgetting anytime soon. If there’s Oracles out there listening…thanks, Ahriman.

It’s weird to think the Princeps might’ve done all of that not to change things himself but…to change me enough to change things. I bought his plan, and even now I buy that if he’d won he would’ve gone through with it, no question. But when you think about why he’d’ve lied about some of that shit…the only reason I can see is somewhere, some part of him was hoping I’d win. And he wanted to make damn sure that when I did, I’d be a different person than he was when he came back the first time. Only good way to change anything is put it through hell, after all. Showing me firsthand just how much of a douchebag monster I could be was a pretty fuckin useful way of convincing me, I’ll give him that. …wish the girls hadn’t had to see that, though. Dunno how much they’ll really think about it. Maybe they won’t. But maybe they will. Still, they came to get me, just like my daimon did. They could’ve done exactly what future Rhi suggested they do, and it would’ve been tough to blame them. …it’s kinda nice to know Artemis thinks enough of me to give up something important to help, even after all that. Don’t make her regret it, Adrian.

Speaking of regretting shit, I should never have followed them into that place without preparing first, jesus. The hell’s the matter with you, man? Deathwish or not, it’s a pretty fuckin stupid Doorwarden who doesn’t take five seconds to make sure he’s not gonna get himself shot trying to protect his cabal. Come on. Still, can’t complain too much. Nothing like coming a hair away from death five times in one day to make you feel like you earned living.

…oh yeah. This all reminds me. Public told the girls my name, so Artemis could scry me. So I guess I don’t have to worry about that when we go to Rome, anyway. Now all I gotta worry about is somebody digging through their heads. …I might’ve said I worry about the Guardians too, but you know, I’m not so sure I do. Rhi might’ve joined us as a watchdog, but the way she asked me if I trusted them kinda makes me think. Sure, she could’ve been playing me to get what she wanted. I dunno though. Should’ve been reading them, dammit. Guess I couldn’t exactly be expected to be at the top of my game after the fuckin Underworld.

Wonder if Artemis meant to give me all of that when she let me inside her head. Their names were in there too. Rafaela Vargas. Sarah Thompson. Should make it a hell of a lot easier for me to get hold of em from a distance, if nothing else. I might even have enough to go on to scry Vates, and while usually I’d keep a trump like that up my sleeve til we really needed it, what’s he gonna do – step up his defenses? Like he’s not already the most paranoid fuck on the planet, come on.

So what now? Jimenez is probably still alive since the Abyss hasn’t eaten downtown Dallas and the courthouse is in one piece. Missed my appointment with M but he hasn’t found me yet so I probably have a little time. Which is good because fuck if I got any idea yet what in the hell I’m gonna tell him. Don’t think I can block any of those memories for the meeting, either, there’s too many of them now. I’d be chopping my mind up into so many disjointed little pieces I’d come off as a goddamn lunatic, he’d know something was up and that’d be the end of that.

I’ll figure it out.

This is gonna be a really, really long. Fuckin. Drive.

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[V.O. Alastor] 15

You ever get that feeling, like you’re looking at a vase, and then suddenly you realize – no, you dumb fuck, it’s two faces? Now take that and multiply it by about a thousand, and you get what I feel like right now. Good thing I pulled off not giving my daimon the satisfaction of getting all googly-eyed over it. That amazing bastard would’ve never let me forget it.

Gotta hand it to the Princeps, that bullshit was clever. Clever ain’t gonna save him, but I can appreciate a good work of art as much as the next guy. Kind of scary how much being back in control makes me feel like I could take on the damn world. Fortunately, all I gotta take on is one man. Too bad my daimon keeps killing all the other things that’re supposed to be hanging around in my psyche, otherwise I could’ve had a goddamn army here. Ha ha.

Then again, all this is sort of really fuckin weird if you think about it. If this is his Oneiros, is it mine too? Does time even mean anything in the Astral, does it care that there’s two of me? Is my daimon the only one strong enough, or individual enough, to be around? Not exactly the kind of shit M covered in Astral Journeys 101, let me tell you.

My daimon was worried my body would be dead when we got out. Worries me, too, but more than that I can’t stop thinking about how soulless mages go out of their minds. No idea how much time’s been passing out there. If I’m not dead…jesus. I really need to get the fuck out of here, pronto. And hope the girls don’t find me before I do.

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[V.O. Alastor] 14

What do I even say?

Sitting here in my own room in twenty fuckin thirty-two, and not only am I trapped in here, but I can’t even see the wards keeping me in. Can’t sense anybody down on the street. Can’t try to contact Artemis or Rhiannon. Feels like…being claustrophobic, maybe, or something. No way to get out of my own head, it’s driving me nuts. Had to spend an hour in there with the punching bag just to feel normal for a while. That douchebag could be scrying me and I’d never know, not that it matters. The fuck am I gonna do, bust his TV? I’m sure he’ll be heartbroken.

Bet it hurt when we trashed his car though. Dammit, I can’t even feel good about that, that was a beautiful car.

Thank God I’m alone in here again, though, inside my mind. That fuckin wolf. At least it betrayed the Princeps enough to get the girls out of here, but I didn’t even get an apology out of that mutt. I guess it figured whatever I did to myself, I deserved it.

It’s weird how this place feels like mine, even though it’s not really. Guy’s got everything I’d put in a penthouse suite of my own if I had the money. Some of his shit’s even actually mine, he kept it all this time, like my ring. And my Colt, though he must’ve spiced it up at some point.

Pandemonium might be Hell, but at least it was my Hell. This is like…an impersonal, uncaring Hell that gives not a single shit about what I become or where I’m going. Well, fuck it. I may be cut off from my soul right now, but I’m still a goddamn Mastigos and this is just another test. Another Awakening. When you’re in control of nothing whatsoever is when you climb the tower of the Iron Gauntlet, so get off your ass and figure this out, Adrian. There’s gotta be something you can do.

If I stole my own soul, where would I put it? …inside myself, if I could swing it. Or in a hidden spatial pocket somewhere, if not. Which helps me not at all, unless I can somehow kill the bastard.

Most difficult hit of my life, huh? At least it’s one I’m giving myself. Seems important.

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[V.O. Alastor] 13

Ugh. Artemis ever casts this spell on me again, I will kill her. Mother fuck. The future doesn’t even have a single goddamn vending machine in it and the wolf’s over there giving me the evil eye because I ate all its bread. Yeah, I could probably turn off feeling hunger, but I’d just keel the fuck over later if I did. Not to mention all this life energy’s making me crazy. Come on, Adrian, suck it up. You can go twelve hours without jacking off, don’t let this Thyrsus bullshit make you lose control. Denying yourself what you want, remember?

Ffffff.

…the Princeps. I can’t fuckin believe I joined up with Caesar anyway, after all that. I can’t believe I’m running his psychic gestapo. And I can’t believe I killed Artemis over a deal with the goddamned Hollow. How fucked up is it that I’m more afraid of myself in this timeline than I am of the friggin antichrist? Guy’s gotta be a paranoid control freak, master mentalist and all-around murderous bastard. I know what I’m like when I’m not thinking straight, and it’s been twenty years. Man, who knows what happened. Maybe Caesar had something to hang over my head. Maybe he used magic, wouldn’t put it past him. Maybe he just had too many friends and not enough enemies.

Or maybe the me in this timeline didn’t let himself remember about Avalon until it was too late.

“A light in the dark, born to dead blood.” I ain’t been much of a light to anybody so far, that’s for damn sure. So what’s destiny getting at here? What the hell am I supposed to do? Second Awakening, okay, but why is it me, of all the people it could’ve been? Something tells me I need to talk to Dahhak and Medraut. Maybe once we get back we can take a little vacation to the far shores of the Astral, find out what the fuck’s going on out there. They say you can’t hide nothin from Dahhak, maybe that’s exactly what I need. Some asshole with the power of Pandemonium to scourge the everloving shit out of me until I can see right through into my own soul. I’d ask my daimon but he’d probably shove a hot poker the size of a telephone pole up the Statue of Liberty’s ass and call it a day.

No question about it, I’m gonna find Vates’ road. I have to. It’s supposed to be me, for whatever godforsaken reason, and it’s the only way I can see to stop all this from happening. Can’t put this into words right, but seeing inside him like that…fuck, I think I kinda know what Artemis felt like the day I showed her the sunrise. His dreaming, I can’t get it out of my mind. I mean, I probably could but that ain’t the point. I don’t want to. It’s like watching the sun rise all over again but it’s closer now, there’s no glass wall, no beast. Feels like…no, I was gonna say it feels like the kind of good you feel when you smash a guy’s head into the ground but it doesn’t. It’s a different kind of wanting and I couldn’t explain it to save my life. I need to find that road, for everybody’s sake. I need to lead the world to ascension. Does that make me a Knight too? Or am I just Vates’ little canary here? If he thinks I’m just gonna roll over and let him lead me around by the nose he’s got another thing coming. Gotta take control of this destiny of mine. Been handing Vates the keys for way too long.

Speaking of which, why the hell did he kidnap Mainyu and break into his shit? What did that get him, other than a pissed off Rhiannon and a more paranoid bunch of watchdogs? I don’t think he gives a shit what’s on those drives, it’s an act. Trying to keep up appearances that the Seers are after something, keep spreading fear, but what for? He must want M on edge, the Pentacle at war and jumping at shadows. Keeping everybody busy. Buying us time? Or maybe he just wants us to take the Seers out like he took out his gang, for the same reasons. Boy, if he’s trying to follow Medraut’s advice about ending the concept of killing, he’s not exactly making huge strides. But hey, neither am I. Ha ha ha. God dammit.

…one other thing. It wasn’t the Seers that destroyed Boston’s Pentacle. It…was the Mensarius. That lying two-timing self-absorbed fuck. I knew I couldn’t trust him, I knew he was a piece of work, I knew my instincts were right about the Cipher, but this? This? And for what, just to get at Romulus? There had to be better ways of doing that. So he wanted to stage a war with the Seers, why? Was this all about Vates? Wanted to run him to ground so he wouldn’t expose where he came from, who he really is? I guess he figured I’d find him and kill him without asking questions. And there was a time when I would’ve, too. Hell, I tried. Can’t tell the girls about this yet, I’d be as good as painting targets on em clear as day. Besides, I think Artemis might just have a heart attack right there, or put her knife through my skull or something. Need a plan first. But I got a feeling I’m gonna need their help.

I swear to God, if the two of them are using New York City as their own personal petty little playground of vengeance and spite, I’m gonna put a bullet through the both of their heads, chop the baby in half and call it a fuckin day. Nobody screws around with my city and gets away with it. The right people are gonna pay for all this shit and the rest of them are getting their asses on that road. I don’t care what it takes.

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Thamaturgic Notes 2

I feel like I am beginning to understand how weird things must be for masters of Time. I have a lot of free time right now, but not enough for Alastor to heal naturally. And we can not afford to waste mana. So I am going to try something weird.

My idea is to make him age faster. Just for a little while, so “healing naturally” just happens quicker. I need to be careful, though. I do not want to mess this up! If he has wrinkles after one use I will feel very guilty. He will probably just shrug and say it is the price paid for convenience.

But I do not plan to make a mistake.

I am beginning with the spell for bodily control. It is useful, but not very focused. I must push forward his whole cellular progress rate. He will probably be very hungry. Maybe the Wolf will be willing to help? I think he has calmed down a little. He was even playing a little with Alastor.

The Wolf is so much smarter than I realized. Also he is a little bossy. I wonder if he got that from me!

Maybe I should investigate the Time Arcanum at some point? Maybe I could get more use out of this spell with some ability to control actual time. Maybe I could even remove the drawbacks of this spell!

What should I call it? “Fast Metabolism” is boring. Maybe there’s a mythical figure who aged very quickly? Where is Google when I need it?

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