Knoblitch


Conversation 1: 11/28/16
Me: “Conductor Knoblitch. I’m here to discuss the … attempted break in yesterday”
Knob: “Do you have an explanation on what happened?” he responds with, through Shansley.
Me: “There was an encounter with another divine. We believe he tested the defenses yesterday after our confrontation before combusting into flames. Before the host combusted into flames I mean”
Knob: “How did it find this place?”
Me: “We’re still unsure. We were hoping to fortify the libraries defenses from further entry”
Knob: “How do you intend to do that?”
Me: “We were hoping your side had some ideas”
Knob: “We do. And we are already making some defenses. Ratman is offering to give you similar defenses if you accept being our vassal.”
Me: “Vassal?”
Knob: “Subordinate to our religious authority in the library. An ally, but one under our protection. You remain sovereign but in dire situations we may give you directives to protect our mutual interests.”
Me: “So if a conflict were to arise between Ovid and the Lady I would be forced to choose Ovid. That’s what you mean”
Knob: “No. You just can’t choose against Ovid. You cannot betray us, and we legally cannot betray you. It is an alliance, but as you will be relying on our defenses, we have more authority during war. If we need your help for a mutual protection, you cannot suddenly say ‘no, we are not interested in helping.’”
Me: “And I assume this also relates to Ovid expanding his domain in the library?”
Knob: “We cannot respond to invaders while waiting for your consent to fight on your side of anything. We must ally, and as we are far more populous, Ratman believes we deserve more control of the library.”
Me: “A decision that was made without our consent. How many of these will we be expecting?”
Knob: “When we destroyed the betrayer rats and saved the lost library? Our epic ascent to the surface to save man from themselves? Which of these do you argue was unjust?”
Me: “Cleaning up your betrayers is not a favor!”
Knob: “I’m sorry you see it that way. It was the betrayal of the men sent from the surface who corrupted my kin. If you wish for war instead of peace, say so.”
Me: “We desire no such thing but you are taking from the Lady and expecting us to not take offense”
Knob: He stops talking. “Alright. Then what is your proposal, if not a fair alliance?”
Me: “I’m an ambassador. I can make no such proposals on my own”
Knob: “Then perhaps I misunderstand why you are here. Did you come to discuss ways of defense?”
Me: “I’m here to ask for your proposal and find out why actions were made without asking. I will transfer them to the Lady and you will have our response shortly”
Knob: “Actions were taken because actions were not being taken and we desire not being destroyed by the mess you surfaces have made.”
Me: “If that is the will of Ovid I will transfer that sentiment”
Knob: He seems to break trance for a moment “Don’t take this personally. Ratman is trying to understand but it isn’t easy for him to really connect with the way you people speak.”
Me: “I’m aware and I understand his intentions but his manners… are not quite up to par. Why do you not handle diplomacy if you know he will have trouble understanding?”
Knob: He shrugs. “We are new at this.”
Me: “… That’s fair. So are we. I will deliver this message. Please send my apologies for speaking out of line. I am but a mere servant”

Conversation 2: 12/1/16
Note: Shadles is present and translates for Knoblitch
Marcus: “You came to defend us… why?”
Me: “Our Lady is an ally of the Ratman. We came to honor that alliance.” He turns to Knob, “Do you know what has become of the moon?”
Knob: “Close the door behind you, will you? Ratman has… disconnected from Ovid. We know not where he is or what he is doing. We are… scared. Vulnerable. Weakened without his leadership”
Me: “First. Is Ratman a construct or a man. The answer might change my theory of what’s going on. I need to know”
Knob: “Ratman is both. He is both living and non-living.”
Me: “You know where the Ratman was residing. I think someone … disabled for lack of a better term all magic in that area. I think Ratman might have been caught up in that magic. And then he and the place he was in was stolen by whoever was responsible for the moon’s disappearance. That is our current theory.”
Knob: “Yes… the moon is where they were. Its a secret long forgotten from Man, that the Gods live in the place where they can watch over us. And now it is gone. And that means the home of the gods… is gone.”
Me: “It is not gone. Just sealed.. We must find a way back in once the city is secured. Do you need anything before we go?”
Knob: “Yes… we need to know if what the city needs now is a takeover by our armies… or should we stay out of human affairs until the moon returns?”
Me: “… We are servants. We can not make that call. Defend yourselves till the morning. Demons though. No one is gonna complain if you go kill those damn bastards”
Knob: “Its more than demons… do you not know?”
Me: “What else is there?”
Knob: “The Temple district. Two of our armies are engaged with them. They have declared war on all surface rats.”
Me: “I did not know that. I don’t think the lady can send forces tonight. I’m sorry. I can say I don’t think anyone would object if you took over the temple if they declared war on you though. Well. Some would object. I wouldn’t though. I say that as a person, not a servant”
Marcus: “We will fight off the invaders and only take what land we need to protect from Temple incursion.” The ambassador says flatly. “In the name of Ratman. Knob, send out the message.”
Me: “I wish you luck. May the Lady guide you to safety”

Conversation 3: 12/28/16 – Log
Ambassador: “Hello, friend of the ratkind!”
Me: “Good evening. I hope everything is well?”
Ambassador: “Not well. There has been a great deal of confusion and unrest among the rats since the Dark Night.”
Me: “Understandable. Are you still at war with both the temple district and the demons?”
Ambassador: “No. Whatever it was the Temple intended to do, I fear it was already done. They have publicly denied attacking us.”
Me: “… That is odd… how are you going to respond?”
Ambassador: “We have an army and no leadership. We do not need two fights. You are here with the Weather Society. Have you come to give side?”
Me: “Unfortunately no. I have some questions and some plans I would like to get your opinion on”
Ambassador: “In what context? As an ambassador to the sewers?”
Me: “Yes”
Ambassador: “Lay out your idea.”
Me: “As you might know the Mids is at war with the Temple currently. However it seems that for now we are … in a more of a defensive war and the citizens are getting caught in the crossfire. In response some parts of the weather are trying to get a neutral zone established in the mids for the citizens to evacuate to. This neutral zone would disallow all troop movements within the zone. Do you think the Sewer District would be opposed to such a deal until the conflict has ended?”
Ambassador: “Who will guard it and who is allowed in?”
Me: “In theory any citizen not established with one of the districts governments. As for who will guard it, that is still being negotiated. I was actually curious if the sewer district would be interested. There would be some stipulations but if the surface saw you as peacekeepers it might lessen some of their… more misguided ideas”
Ambassador: “Look. Do you personally want this project to go through? As a favor?”
DM: You know that the Ambassador seems to owe you a favor for the Moonless Night and is willing to help to consider this even.
Me: “If I can get this approved by the weather then yes. I would consider this a big help if you could help get this idea passed”
Ambassador: “The Weather Society owes us. They are aware of this. If you swear never to take up arms against us on that soil, we can push a small area through to test the idea. It should border us. How much area do you imagine? I should ask before I commit.”
DM: It is discussed and an area approximately 1/3 of the current mids. The Sewer district will provide forces to police unless the Temple back stabs them again.
Me: “Well I can’t guarantee that as a member of the Mids. Hopefully they won’t be able to”
Ambassador: “Ah. You work for the Weather, do you not? They recently took on a captive who was meant as a diplomat to our embassy here. A man named Funeralis.”
Me: “I can deliver your request but I don’t have the authority to free him”
Ambassador: “I know. I just want you to put word. Thats all I ask.”
Me: “Will do. On to the next topic. What do you know of druff?”
Ambassador: “We do not support the manufacture or use of Druff. We sell the base materials for legitimate alchemical use only.” He says flatly. “I can’t be held responsible for the disgusting behavior of non-rats.”
Me: “So you’re saying any drugs made with your chemicals was done by surface folks and not condemned by the sewer district correct?”
Ambassador: “Correct. We don’t sell you this… Druff… and whats its made of… ugh.”
Me: “Are you aware of what it is made of and it’s reactions when consumed by humanoids?”
Ambassador: “I know it is made out of… certain waste materials produced by our fur.”
Me: “…what”
Ambassador: “Well, the fur of the rats below. Its a combination of fur and rat skin, and assumedly sewer fumes. Its not my area of expertise.”
Me: “I see. That’s good to hear. We would like to avoid any incident when we crack down on those distributing to our soldiers”
Ambassador: “I assume you will find some degenerate rat at the end of it. Let me know what you find, and we will deal with our own.”
Me: “We will try. I believe that concludes all my business here as a member of the Weather Society. Can you direct me to Conductor Knoblitch please”
Ambassador: “Sure, Knoblitch. He is here and everything.”

DM: You go to Knoblitch’s communication room. Shadles enters soon after with a wound on his head.

Me: “Good evening Conductor”
Knob: “Evening. Keeping the peace?”
Me: “Trying to. Any word on Ratman or the library?”
Knob: “Nothing from below. Ovid has quickly reorganized, but already certain factions are starting to form. Without our central figure, we are becoming more feral, it seems… much like you and yours. How are you fairing?”
Me: “Slightly better. We were able to get the Lady out in time. As allies I was hoping to better define certain terms, and as your leader stated, trade information”
Knob: “Yes… well… obviously we have no new information regarding the moon. Have you found anything in the way of culprits who may have disconnected Ovid?”
Me: “Suspects. Yes. Proof? No”
Knob: “Share what you have.”
Me: “I will give you their names. However the Ratman’s precedent states that info must be bartered for. The first suspect is a group called the ‘Friend of Man’ and they are the most likely culprit. The second suspect is a man named ‘Lucky Dogan’ who I think is another divine.”
DM: The conductor is aware of both names.
Knob: “We know the Friends of Man share timing with the event very closely, although their connection with the Temple and the various tall structures around the City… are not as clear. What do you have? We can share what we know. Well… all I can speak for is Ovid outside of the Ratman. I shouldn’t say we until he returns.”
Me: “I actually want to know everything you know about the library. Your side has greater knowledge of how it works. You agree to show us what you know and I’ll tell you everything I know about the Friends of Man”
Knob: “I don’t have anything I can show you. Ovid isn’t contained in text, its a series of joint memories. I have to ask the community to produce memories for me to experience.”
Me: “Do you think they would let you?”
Knob: “Show you how they did what, exactly?”
Me: “You’ve expanded your domain, seem to be able to enter the place physically without him drawing each one of you in. You can read the books. You said you know how to improve defenses.”
Knob: “Ah. I can answer at least one of those questions. After he discovered the abandoned library (which, we later learned, was not abandoned), he gave many of us a… blessing, or gift. A sort of magical gift, while we cataloged the extent of it. Truthfully it was over a week before any rats discovered the section you had occupied… we were quite shocked.”
Me: “So the gift allows you to read the books?”
Knob: “The gift allowed us to find the passages to the Library. So we could freely pass between. The passages that are now, entirely gone.”
Me: “Okay. Well you answered a question I had. My turn. The Friends of Man are actually from another plane of existence. They’re working on a portal to our world”
Knob: “How is that possible?”
Me: “How is what possible?”
Knob: “Ah. Well… it was bound to happen. The planes are infinite and varied, and they move to a rhythm beyond our comprehension. It was bound to happen that along the way one found hold on our little escapee.”
Me: “True”
Knob: “I do find it worrisome that what pops out from an infinite and varied plane resembles one of our little city… I worry deeply what that means. Is it a portal from them to us, us to them, or both? The technology of our ‘holes’ was not sophisticated enough magically to do both… The one they are building. You mentioned this earlier.”
Me: “I will not reveal more until a bargain has been made or more information revealed”
Knob: “You asked for what we had on the Moon. Do you not feel information about the Friends of Man, as we agreed upon, is fair?”
Me: “You answered one question of several.”
Knob: “Alright. I can’t give you more.”
Me: “Can you … communicate and get the info? I’m sorry I don’t know the specifics of how it works”
Knob: “Well, ordinarily we would ask the Ratman. I can communicate with the community as now, but it will be sporadic without him… let me ask. The defenses were intricate scrimshaw work to create a powerful magical shield… of the school of abjuration. Our grand viziers still have the plans.”
Me: “If the plans can be delivered then I will share more”
Knob: “Whoa, that isn’t the agreement. You wanted information. We shared it. Now you are asking for actual magical artifacts.”
Me: “The plans are magical?”
Knob: “The plans are magical. Yes.”
Me: “My apologizes. I didn’t know that. I assumed they were drawings”
Knob: “What else do you need from us, diplomat?”
Me: “If bartering is over then that just leaves us with a few other tasks”
Knob: “And those are?”
Me: “So. Since we are allies the hope and we’re relatively new to the game, we were hoping you could share with us your policy on handling agents of other divines”
Knob: “There isn’t a policy. We are improvising. So far diplomacy has worked half the time.”
Me: “And the other half?”
Knob: “It hasn’t. Fighting and uncertainty. Perhaps many divine are better than none? I cannot say.”
Me: “Well it seems this man was subjected without his consent so we’re going to free him. Or at least try”
Knob: “Whom?”
Me: “Does it matter?”
Knob: “If you want advice, I have to know enough to give it.”
Me: “A member of the Weather Society. Goes by Richard”
Knob: “Good luck, warrior.”
Me: “Goodbye Conductor”

Conversation 4: 5/24/17 – Log
Me: I guess I’ll start by thanking them for their assistance last night and asking how they are dealing with the Senation takeover.
Knob: “We received a request to meet with the new Senation holdings in the Mids, but we declined. Not because we aren’t interested in relations. We are having some internal strife, and that takes priority.”
Me: “Conductor you NEED to get your people to listen. There is a FAR greater threat than anything you know of. Unless Ratman has reappeared?”
Knob: He shakes his head. “And without him, we are falling apart.”
Me: “That’s what I’m saying. I think I know where the moon is. And it’s not in good hands. And if he has the moon. He has Ratman. This is the same man who attacked your tower and used chemicals to enslave your people. He now has the moon and is claiming to control the power of ‘conduits’. Do you realize how bad that might be? If he can control Ratman, then your loyalty will FORCE you to serve him. All of you”
Knob: Knoblitch’s ears twitch. “Do you have proof of this?”
Me: Pearce irritably taps his foot. “I… I don’t. I’ve just … seen it. In my dreams. I think I saw among his possessions but it was teleported away before I could inspect it”
Knob: “In your… dreams.” He says flatly. “Have your dreams proven correct before? Do you have prophetic dreams? Look, why don’t we just send scouts out to confirm what you are saying. Where does this person live?”
Me: “He’s a Lich now. Ingred can back the story. The tower is guarded by a bunch of children he’s raised to be his personal spell caster army. When he brings the moon there it will turn red and we will have lost the library to his control”
Knob: “Where is the moon now?”
Me: “If I knew WHERE it was I would go get it. That’s why I’m asking you to help me look. He has bases all around the city but it has to be somewhere. We should first clear out the spire and look for hints there”
Knob: “I will have people search. What do you want us to do with the ‘children spellcasters’? I assume they aren’t ratfolk…”
Me: “They are not. We should try to knock them out. They have done nothing wrong. If you agree to help clear them out, and agree to not infect any of them I will see about getting you a transport to the tower”
Knob: “This sounds like it will have heavy casualties if it goes wrong.”
Me: “If I’m right and we don’t do anything you will all be enslaved to a madman. Did you see what happened to those he got a hold of in the Docks? He also knows about your machine if you think you can escape him”
Knob: Knoblitch cringes. “Well, then it sounds like our paws have been put forward on this. Alright. When?”
Me: “Two days from now. Until then we should both be scouting for his bases. He goes by ‘Harrison’ and ‘Zane’. Probably has other aliases though”
Knob: Knoblitch says he will have a quorum on whether to invade, and will know tomorrow. He also suggests he will send out scouts to search for bases regardless.
Me: “Conductor. If I gave you an item that is connected to the library do you think your portal machine could be re-calibrated to opening a portal there?”
Knob: Knoblitch hesitates. “The specifics of how the device works are not known to any one rat…. we keep some knowledge fractured to protect it. Ovid would have led that decision, not us… and I fear to so go against Ovid’s vision.”
Me: “To clarify. You don’t want your own people to know how a machine works? Or you don’t want us learning”
Knob: “… some things should not be known. Only the one you call Ratman truly understood the technology, and he directs…. directed, I guess… that knowledge. I could collect it, but it would be a dangerous, almost treacherous act. Many would know it isn’t what Ratman intended.”
Me: “Did Ratman also intend to be captured? …. there is one way to make sure no one living rat learned of how to man the machine. If sacrifices are willing to be made”
Knob: “Some ratfolk are calling it a test of faith. Others are leaving. Pearce, Ovid is breaking down, and what you are asking of me may be part of its burial.”
Me: “If it is breaking down already isn’t this the appropriate time for a gamble?”
Knob: “I will collect the information. It needs to be done.”
Me: “…. there is one way to make sure no one living rat learned of how to man the machine. If sacrifices are willing to be made”
Knob: “… Pearce, I should clarify something about this machine. Even if we were to get it to work, it would be temporary. And it would very likely be one way. The key to permanency only Ratman knew.”
Me: “How temporary?”
Knob: “It hasn’t been tested. Ever. We had, until recently, no sending stone.”
Me: “How did you manage to get a hold of one now that the Friends of Man are after them?”
Knob: “As friendly as you are, I do not believe that is pertinent to this conversation. Revealing the secrets of Ovid and its movements should not be done casually.”
DM: You hear the ambassador talking downstairs and you hear the word “Richard”.
Me: “Okay. Well regardless of whether we invade Harrison’s bases or we go through the portal it seems we will need to prepare troops. The portal is a succeed or die mission apparently. Let me know by courier when you and your group reach a consensus on what you plan on doing. I will need to know by tomorrow afternoon if you choose the bases over the portal if I’m to try to get transport”

Knoblitch

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