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Oscar

F22/PP The Fresh King of Floor 22 <<King of Lakes>>

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<<King of Lakes>>

That whole Sundered Spire mess well behind them and Oscar stuck with the Fishing skill for the fourth time in his career on Aincrad, he decided to actually do something with it. Not only that, but he felt the need to rope Freyd in as well. Dude was wound so tight it was a wonder he didn't snap in half before they even had the opportunity to attempt to fight that dragon. But, all's well that ends well. And now Oscar was ready for a spot of fishin'. After downing a few buffs and taking care of his preparations, Oscar headed on up to Floor 22. Once there, he looked around. Tanabata had come and gone and there was nary a sight to behold. Somehow, the gaping chasm torn into the earth by Sundered Spire had been more or less healed. And by "somehow" Oscar, of course, meant Cardinal fuckery. So much the better. He didn't know how he'd get this quest done if there was no Lake of Reflections to fish in. He opened his menu and shot off a message.

Quote

Hey @Freyd - The Whisper in Shadows
Quest. Floor 22. You in?

 

 

Spoiler

Oscar - Lvl 68
1390 HP
136 Energy
5 Accuracy (+1 Mod, +2 Gear +2 Buff)
3 Evasion (+1 Mod, +2 Gear)
23 Base Damage - (1 Base +7 Skill +1 Ferocity +9 Familiar +1 Athletics +1 Totem +3 Potion)
106 Mitigation 
12 Fallen
2 Burn


Equipment
Tesseleth’s Fury [Tier 3 Demonic Two-Handed Battleaxe] | Fallen, Fallen, Burn, Burn
Tactical Outfitting Mk.III [Tier 3 Demonic Light Armor] | Vampiric (Defensive), Para Immune, Rec, Rec
Mythril Greaves [Tier 3 Perfect Heavy Armor] |  +81 MIT
Gloves of Caerus [Tier 1 Perfect Light Armor] | +3 Loot Die
Ivory Gold Leaf Ring [Tier 1 Demonic Trinket] | ACC, ACC, EVA, EVA

Familiar
Leeroy & Jenkins - Familiar: +9 DMG


Battle Ready Inventory
Teleportation Crystal
Empty Inventory Slot |
Empty Inventory Slot |
Empty Inventory Slot |
Empty Inventory Slot |
Empty Inventory Slot |

Buffs
Well-Rested: -1 energy cost for the first three expenditures of each combat.
Filling: Increase the effectiveness of a single food item consumed in a thread by +1 slot.
Relaxed: Increases out of combat HP regen by (5 * Tier HP) and decreases full energy regen to 2 Out of Combat Posts.
Skylight: Expertise - Rank 5 Searching
Squeaky Clean: The first time you would suffer DoT damage in a thread, reduce damage taken from DoT each turn by 25%

Skills
2HBA - Rank 5: +8 Damage
Light Armor - Rank 5: +25 Damage Mitigation
Battle Healing - Rank 5: Recover 5% of Max HP every round while in combat
Searching - Rank 5: +5 LD, +5 Stealth Detection
Concentration: +1 to your BD (3 turn cooldown)
Survival: Heal 15*Tier HP when out of battle
Parry: 2-turn CD, 5 EN Half damage of next attack and remove Stun/Paralysis effects
First Aid: Rank 3: Restore 12% of target’s max health [Cost: 4% of healing done]
Fishing - Use a Post Action to attempt to Fish, results determined by CD roll.

Skill Mods
Ferocity: +1 Base Damage
Athletics: +1 Base Damage, Max HP by 10*tier
Precision: +1 ACC
Justified Riposte:  Successful Parries Stun Opponent, 3 Turn CD
Finesse Rank 3: -3 EN on 2HBA Sword Arts
Sprint & Acrobatics: +1 EVA

Kumatetsu Statue Activated | +1 DMG
Azrael's Sports Drink Consumed | +3 DMG
Focused Dog Consumed | +2 ACC

Ultra Lucky Hot Dog Consumed | +3 LD -> +4 LD from Filling Buff

 

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Weren't things supposed to calm down after the big blow-up and the Cratered Lake thing?  It certainly hadn't turned out that way.  All this business with Mari... oy... that was a tougher nut than he'd ever anticipated, and the final results were still uncertain.  Firm Anima had a crop of new recruits that still needed training, though they'd earned their stripes against the Trebuchet in the event and should be proud of themselves for it.  At least that business with the wayward gemini finally seemed resolved.  Janitor indeed.

Freyd just happened to be sitting on the edge of the pier in Coral, lazily draping his feet over the sides.  It was a rare and welcome break, though it surely couldn't last. The sight of the restored Lake of Reflections was soothing - a symbol of restorative hope.  He sipped the last of his coffee, his trademark cowl hanging over his shoulders for a change.  The thing had practically become a badge of office.  If he turned it down, it was like he didn't have to perform for a few minutes.  A ping in his message made him roll his eyes.  Couldn't the HUD see where his cowl was!?  After resisting defiantly for about 5 seconds, he opened up the UI and was pleasantly surprised to see a message from Oscar that didn't obviously involved world-shattering doom and damnation.

Wait... floor 22?  He looked up to see the giant standing at the boat docks about a hundred feet away.

"Dude!" He yelled.  "I'm in!"

 

Freyd consumes:  Titan's Strength (DMG 3) [160770-3]  |  Red Velvet Meringue (EVA 2) [165669]

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1130/1130 | EN:110/110 | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22

Spoiler

Name: Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows
Level: 55
HP: 1130/1130
EN: 110/110

Stats:
Damage: 19 + 3
Mitigation: 79
Evasion: 2 + 2
Accuracy: 4
BH:22
KEEN:1
HLY:6
BLD:36

Equipped Gear:
Weapon: Grief's Harbinger (T3-2HSS, ACC 1, HOLY 1, BLD 1)
Armor: Skirmisher's Garb [T3 LA, MIT 2, EVA 1]
Misc: Assassin's Cowl (T2-Trinket, ACC 2, KEEN 1)

Skills:
2H Straight Sword [Rank 5]
Light Armor [Rank 5]
Searching [Rank 3]
Battle Healing [Rank 3]
Parry [Obtained]

Extra Skills:
Disguise
Familiar Mastery: Fighter 3
Survival
Meditation

Mods:
Precision
Finesse - Rank 3
LA Athletics
Ferocity
LA Sprint and Acrobatics

Battle Ready Inventory:
Starter Healing Potion (50 hp)*3
Teleport Crystals*2

Housing Buffs:
Rested: -1 energy cost for the first two expenditures of each combat
Clean: The first time you would suffer DoT damage in a thread, reduce damage taken from DoT each turn by 20% (rounded down)
Hard Working: +2 EXP per crafting attempt and +1 crafting attempt per day
Filling: Increase the effectiveness of a single food item consumed in a thread by +1 T1 slot.
Item Stash: +1 Battle Ready Inventory Slot
Relaxed: Increases out of combat HP regen by (5 * Tier HP) and decreases full energy regen to 2 Out of Combat Posts.
Col Stash: +5% bonus col from monster kills and treasure chests
Multipurpose: Gain +1 to LD, Stealth Rating, Stealth Detection, or Prosperity to one post in a thread. Can be applied after a roll

Guild Hall Buffs:
Lucrative: Reduce LD needed for Salvage by 5 (10+ for Alchemist crystals, 6+ for everything else). +2 EXP per craft. Rank 9 crafters receive +1 crafting attempt per day. Rank 10 crafters receive +2 crafting attempts per day.
Col Deposit: +5% bonus col from last-hit monster kills and +10% bonus col from treasure chests.

Scents of the Wild: n/a

Wedding Ring: n/a

 

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Freyd was already here! Oscar threw up a hand, waving it back and forth. "Sweet!" Oscar bellowed. "I'm gonna go find the quest guy!" It wasn't as if he needed to look very far. He was on the docks. In fact, he was already standing right next to the NPC that handed out the quest. An interesting turn of events to be sure. Oscar tapped the dude on the head, hoping that - like with the quest givers during the Tanabata event - he would be able to skip that pesky dialogue and get onto that sweet, sweet quest action. As he had expected, any introductory exposition was completely bypassed and his hud lit up with an arrow pointing towards a mountain off in the distance. His quest tracker updated with the phrase Capture a Red Salamander. Weird because Oscar was certain he was supposed to be catching a fish. Perhaps the salamander would merely serve as bait. Either way, apparently they needed to go on a bit of a hike before they could even think about getting their underwater quarry out of the water. "Hey! He's right here! We gotta go to that mountain!" Oscar yelled. It would be real awkward if Freyd was actually right next to him when he did.

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Someone was, indeed standing right next to Oscar, but it couldn't possibly have been Freyd.  The individual was wearing an oversized beige bucket hat, a pair of opaque black shades and a red hawaiian shirt with a white flower pattern. Everything beyond that was spooky black leather and stealth-stuff.  Ecstatic cries could be heard from a vanity clothing and accessory merchant about twenty feet beyond, having likely made his first sale in ages, if not ever.

"Salamander?  Shit.  I thought this was a fishing quest?  I was really just hoping to kick back and take it easy for a bit."  It was definitely Freyd, though Oscar could never have imagined the man dressed this way in a thousand years.  It was as if someone had taken Giligan, Raoul Duke, Rango and Hawkeye Pierce, mixed them up in a blender, then splashed the resulting mush all over the man.  It really didn't suit him, yet seemed absolutely perfect at the same time.

Just to finish the ensemble, he lifted a frothy pinkish drink in a frosted glass and rimmed with something that looked like it was pretending to be coconut.  He sipped away his passing frustration with a noisy slurp, artfully dodging the little paper umbrella that kept trying to spear him.

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Upon seeing Freyd's ridiculous attire, Oscar only had one thought running through his head:

Oh this fuck is challenging me?

Oscar sauntered over to the rejoicing vendor and opened the shop. Much to his delight, the shopowner had exactly what he was looking for. After finishing his transaction and working through menu, a bright flash of light obfuscated Oscar's form. His suit was replaced with an all khaki ensemble. His aviators disappeared. Oscar messed up his usually immaculately-tended hair. Then, he turned around, placing both hands on his hips as he puffed out his chest with pride. "Oi mate! That there is just the bait for the King o' Lakes. He's a roight elusive buggah. Gotta find 'im 'is fav'rite snack mate. Then we can poke 'im with a stick!"

The most disturbing thing about this whole transformation? His Australian accent was spot-on.

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"Oh," Freyd replied, watching Oscar alter his attire, his eyebrows arching in surprise.  "Were we supposed to wear costumes?  These really are just my fishing clothes."  Despite the absurdity, Freyd appeared to be quite sincere.  If Oscar was going to play games, he'd mess with him in every way possible.  There was also no way that he could possibly match that accent.

"So... mountain?  Bait?  How the hell do you catch salamanders, anyway?"  He scratched at his cap, but Oscar wondered if he was somehow trying to pull up his missing cowl.

"We riding mud slugs to the far side, or launching ourselves on the remnants of the... trebuchet."  His eyes scanned over the edge of the crater as the gears in his mind spun at warp speed at the possibilities. A great and terrible smile spread across his face.  Turning and looking up at Oscar, he was sizing up whether the big man might potentially fly.

"You feeling at all... ballistic?"

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"Look man," Oscar said in his normal tone. "We just finished having an all-out brawl with sentient mobs. If I wanna dress up like the Crocodile Hunter and blow off some steam, let a man have his fun." Oscar pulled out his shades and popped them onto his face. "Although you might have a point about the accent. Probably gonna get a little old. I'm assuming this is just some quest padding. Wouldn't be much of a challenge if you didn't have all these hoops to jump through. Best just get it over with." Of course,  the concept of "travel posts" not even being remotely laid out would make the entire quest much easier than was probably intended. What is "travel?" Does "travel" include any preceding dialogue? Does one need only take a step in a specific direction? If so, Oscar took a step towards the mountain.

Stop! Salamander Time.
 

Spoiler

Searching for Red Salamander
ID: 168390 LD: 4 +5 (Searching) + 4 (Food) = 13
Red Salamander Found!

 

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"So... yeah... mountain."  Freyd pointed up at the big hunk of digital rock pretending to loom over them.  Of course, it was, but also was not.  It was weird.  He stopped thinking about it.

"I still think it would have been more fun to use one of those leftover catapult to launch ourselves here, but your plan was better."  It was a clear and deliberate jab and reference to their shared experiences on floor nine.  Freyd had appreciated some of Oscar's points, at the time, and put them to good use since - especially against Skalaugh.  As much of an aloof, dismissive goof as the big man could be, there was clearly a hypercharged and probably cocaine-addicted hamster at the wheel, keeping him connected with the world.  It was nice that he pretended not to care.  And it matched so well with his own efforts to pretend that he did.

"What was that travel-babble you were going on about?" He grimaced as something was tickling the pocket of his glaringly red shirt.  Pulling out a tiny red lizard, he couldn't realize its colour because the dark tint on his glasses, or that it was precisely the sort of salamander they were looking for.  Oscar could only watch in dismay as the tiny bait-to-be went sailing backwards in the most awkward, flailing arc possible, only to vanish into some inconveniently located crevice of infinite depth.

"What?!" Freyd said, looking confused at his companion's expression.  "What's the look for?"

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"You're the worst sometimes, you know that?" Oscar let out an exasperated sigh. Perhaps the joke had run its course. A flick of his hand, followed shortly by some deft button presses. A flash of light and an immaculately-tailored suit appeared upon the form of an utterly-defeated Oscar. There was nothing to do except find another Salamander. Somehow Freyd swatting away the first one had taken enough wind out of Oscar's sails for him to actually take this quest somewhat seriously. His focused gaze fell upon the stones before them, piercing deep into the cracks and crevices. It took him a moment, but he saw a flash of red and a flicker of moment. Another Salamander scurried out into the sun, darting over the surface of the rock in an attempt to move to a different den while not being caught. "Freyd! There! Don't throw this one away!"

Spoiler

ID: 168550 Searching for Red Salamander
LD: 5+9 = 14 Salamander Found!

 

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This wasn't like Oscar.  He was the self-appointed king of nonsense, in Freyd's mind at least.  For him to give up so easily on such a contest was inconsistent with his character.  Something was bothering him.  Freyd also hardly knew the man, but he made a point of knowing how to read people.  There was a casual ennui about him that was meant to be concealed behind a veneer of ridicule and absurdity, which he had just dropped.  The doe-eyed look of innocence faded as Freyd's facade did the same.  It was time to get back to business.  His bucket hat and glasses disappeared in an instant, replaced by his trademark black cloth cowl.  His Hawaiian shirt, meanwhile, was only unequipped and re-appeared his hands a moment later.  Freyd deliberately spilled the last of his drink on it and tossed the glass high into the air, as if expecting it to vanish.

He knew full well that Oscar was watching his little show, wondering where things were going next.   Quickly wrapping the soaked clothing around both hands, he spared a moment to give his companion a quick 'trust me' wink.

That's when the glass landed two feet behind the lizard.  The thing nearly died of fright leaping into the air like a cat towards the ceiling at the sudden and startling noise, landing straight into the waiting wetted cloth.  Freyd had it wrapped neatly into a bundle an second later.

"The red salamanders around here run extra hot - enough to singe their way though dry cloth in a matter of seconds.  This," he nodded to the dripping improvised bag in his hands, "should give us a few minutes instead.  Come on.  Let's go beat up a fish.   You look like you could use it."

Spoiler

ID 168556 CD = 6.  Salamander caught.

 

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A gnawing feeling of dread. Not exactly atypical of someone suffering from depression and anxiety. Usually - despite everything piled onto him - he was able to shove it all down and move forward. He'd like to say that he was still a little rattled from Sundered Spire. While it hadn't exactly been surprising to him given the sophistication of the system governing the game that they were in, it was definitely a jarring experience. Not so jarring as to cause his gut to clench like this though. Best as he could tell though, there wasn't anything looming on the horizon that should have given him any reason to worry. Beyond the normal organization of Player-Killers gunning for him. He was snapped out of his reverie when Freyd dropped the bundle containing the Salamander in his hands. Right, the quest. 

It was fairly evident that Oscar was elsewhere. His attempts to joke his cares away had triggered something of a blowback effect. Now all the things he had refused to deal with or shoved away with multiple layers of jokes and witty banter were bubbling to the surface all at once. Where was alcohol when you needed it? Not gonna find the solution at the bottom of a bottle. He wanted to laugh. At least he still had his priorities straight. Insofar as his inner monologue wasn't directing him off a cliff yet. Oscar and Freyd returned to the lake in relative silence. Oscar attempted to bait his hook with the Salamander, only to have his hand assaulted with an intense burning sensation the moment it tried. The Salamander leaped into the air, heading directly for Freyd. "Heads up! Don't let it get away!"

Spoiler

ID: 168802 LD1, Fail.

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Freyd whirled at the sound of Oscar's warning, barely having one leg in the boat yet.  Hold the mooring rope in his hands, he had barely untied them from the dock and was ill-positioned to react.  A wild flail from his arm knocked the salamander flying towards open water and well above even Oscar's impressive height.  The boat, meanwhile, drifted from the dock and Freyd's eyes widened in alarm as his legs splayed ever-further apart. 

Bloop. 

There went their bait.  Oscar's hand raised to his forehead, as if the incident had spontaneously spawned a massive migraine.  But neither one of them had time to say anything before a massive aquatic beast broke the surface behind them, its incredible and unwieldly bulk rocking the boat with its wake and giving Freyd the momentary reprieve he needed. Pushing off the dock before he did the complete splits, he propelled them towards the King of Lakes and took a running leap from the front rail driving his blade deep into the slimy thing's flesh to gain some temporary purchase.

 

Spoiler

ID: 168803 LD 15, Success.  King of Lakes found.  (Quest specifies that attack can occur in same round)

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1130/1130 | EN:101/110 (-9) | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22

Oscar | HP1390/1390 | EN: 136/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Galaxy Destroyer (x13): 13 EN - (Rested, Finesse 3) = 9 EN

ID 168804, BD: 6+4 = 10 (hit).  Freyd deals (13*22 = 286 - 20 = 266) damage to King of Lakes

[1,0] The King of Lakes | HP: 934/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20 (1200 - 266)

<<Body Slam>> On an MD of 9, the boss will jump high into the air and crash down in the center of the players, sending out a shock-wave dealing 120 AoE damage. 

<<Dive>> On an MD of 10, the King of Lakes will take the player with the highest hate in its teeth and drag it back into the lake. The player will take 150 unmitigatable damage and need to swim back to the shore, missing their next attack.

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Well that had certainly been some potent bait. If Oscar had known all he needed to do was plop the salamander into the water, he wouldn't have just chucked it as far as he could into the lake and rowed out to get the jump on the fish as quickly as possible. Although perhaps "fish" was the wrong word to use. Abomination? Probably. Abhorrent creature spawned by the depths of Hell to sow fear upon the mortal wretches? Definitely. Ugly mother fucker? You bet your ass. The man looked like Burt Reynolds crossed with a frog. That's what this had to be. Some sort of frog? No way in Hell this could possibly be construed as a fish.

Of course, Oscar was getting caught up in the irrelevancies. It being ugly could be discussed later. Right now, Freyd had them moving out to open water with a giant aquatic creature flailing at the front of the boat. Why he thought fighting a frog-thing in its element was a good idea, Oscar would never know. They would, however, need to deal with this thing quickly before they wound up sinking the boat. Tesseleth's Fury was in his hand. He used the flat of the blade like a giant spatula, sliding it under the flailing King and flicking him into the air with all of his might. The sudden upwards lurch would pry Freyd's blade free of the beast and send the smaller man flying back into the boat.

The King soar upward, the nubs it considered limbs flailing wildly. Then it came back down. Oscar took a batter's stance with Tessleth's Fury, focused eyes tracking the descent of the creature. At the precise moment before it was about to slam into the boat and send both he and Freyd to Davy Jones' Locker, Oscar swung hard. The King was blasted back towards shore with enough force to break the sound barrier. The sonic boom caused the boat to rock to and 'fro, waves churning outward from their location. The King crashed into shore. Oscar's aim had been slightly off. He wanted to land it on the docks so he and Freyd wouldn't need to walk as far to turn the quest in. Alas, it had careened off to the right, slamming into the beachead and carving a deep rut into the sand.

Oscar turned to look at Freyd, a slight look of annoyance on his face as he picked up the oars and began to row back to shore. "Now why are you trying to fight that thing in the water?"

Spoiler

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1130/1130 | EN:101/110 (-9) | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22
Oscar | HP: 1390/1390 | EN: 124/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Explode Catapult [x14] -12 EN [Finesse, Rested]

[1,1] The King of Lakes | HP: 631/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20 | ID: 168817 | BD: 3+5, Deal 302 DMG  | MD: 3-3, Miss

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Freyd blinked the water out of his eyes even as the scent of the fish-thing's slime clung to the inside of his nostrils.  How could anything not dead actually smell that bad?

"Because it was preferable to the very real concept of my ball sack being invite to travel as far as possible in two very opposite directions.  Pain suppression or not, no man wants to even consider the prospect."  He looked over the tiny ship's prow, then at the fish-spawned crater, then at Oscar's towering, scowling form.  The math worked itself out instantaneously in his head.  "Video game, right?"  Jumping into the air as high as he could, he came down with both feet on the very forward tip of their boat, launching his companion into the air towards the beach.  The boat sank deep into a sudden void in the water, then leapt upward driving Freyd into the air as well.  

The King of Lakes was still wobbling out of its self-made impact crater just in time to see some crazed maniac come sailing through the air and plunge his sword into its bulbous head.

 

Spoiler

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1130/1130 | EN:92/110  | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22
Oscar | HP: 1390/1390 | EN: 120/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Galaxy Destroyer (x13): 13 EN - (Rested, Finesse 3) = 9 EN

ID 168818, BD: 3+4 = 7 (hit).  Freyd deals (13*22 = 286 - 20 = 266) damage to King of Lakes

[2,1] The King of Lakes | HP: 365/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20 (631 - 266)

 

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"You fucker!" Oscar yelled as he was launched skyward. The wind whipped past his face as he sailed through the air in a high arc. From his bird's-eye view, Oscar saw Freyd blitz across the water like a fish-seeking missile and sink his blade deep into the King's head. If this was real life, the King would be dead after a blow like that. But if this were the real world and something like that came flying out of the water, Oscar would've made peace with his God and accepted the fact that whatever entity oversees the waters had been mortally offended by something he'd done. Oscar came crashing face first down on the beach just in time to see the King wrap his little arm nubs around Freyd and jump into the water. Oscar would have probably been more concerned if not for the fact that he'd quite literally applied sandpaper to - arguably - his best asset. Scratch that. Second best. If you know what I'm sayin'.

Spoiler

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1130/1130 | EN:92/110  | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22
Oscar | HP: 1390/1390 | EN: 120/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Explode Catapult[x14] -1 EN [Finesse, Rested]

[2,1] The King of Lakes | HP: 365/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20  | ID: 168819 | BD: 1, Miss | MD: 10, Dive used. Freyd takes 150 UNMIT DMG and loses his next turn.

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Suddenly face to eye with the world's most gratuitous guppy, Frey was forced to reconsider the wisdom of his plan.  How the hell had something so large.. and wrong... even managed to launch the two of them into the water like that.  Getting free wasn't exactly that hard.  He just poked it in the aforementioned eye, then swam lightward as fast as he could.  Fortunately, he'd had the foresight to leave their boat just about where he needed it.  Unfortunately, the Meg/Jaws wannabe was right below him, angry, ugly, and disinclined to play fair.

"Alright, Oscar," he said to himself, from beneath a water-soaked cowl that clung to his head like a cheap hooker.  "Now what?"

All around his dinky, busted boat, a great black shadow swelled as the King of Lakes breached the surface and did to Freyd exactly what Oscar had done to it.  The aerial acrobatics may be been reaching a point of excess.

Spoiler

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1002/1130 | EN:93/110  | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22
Oscar | HP: 1390/1390 | EN: 119/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Action lost.  Freyd recovers 22 hp from battle healing. +1 EN from turn recovery.

[2,1] The King of Lakes | HP: 365/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20  

 

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Oscar finally extracted what was left of his face from the sand. Thankful that he hadn't ground his real face into hamburger, Oscar turned his attention back towards the water. Freyd was clinging to the remnants of their boat while the King was circling him. This was why you didn't fight a mass of teeth and hate in its element. There was no way Oscar was going to clear that distance quickly enough to help out. But, perhaps he didn't need to. He scanned his immediate vicinity. As he did, two objects landed to his left and right in quick succession. The oar. Perfect.

Oscar picked one up and took aim. Tesseleth's Fury began to glow as he charged his Sword Art. All Oscar needed to do was wait for the perfect opportunity. He held it like a javelin, watching the King stalk what - by rights - should have been easy prey. The surface of the water broke. The King was airborne. The glow transferred from Tesseleth's Fury into the oar. And then, Oscar launched it. The oar traveled low to the surface, the wind sheer pushing the water away as it closed it on its target. Just like The Meg, the King suddenly had its eye punctured with the oar. The sudden application of force to its face sending it flailing towards Freyd who would hopefully be ready for the final blow.

Spoiler

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1002/1130 | EN:93/110  | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22
Oscar | HP: 1390/1390 | EN: 119/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Explode Catapult[x14] -12 EN [Finesse, Rested] 

[2,3] The King of Lakes | HP: 35/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20 | ID: 168853 | BD: 10, Deal 330 DMG | MD: 1, Miss

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The torpedo-thing, whatever it was, had come from the direction of the shore, and it's timing and place couldn't have been much better.  It had to have been Oscar.  The man's flare didn't disappoint.  The great... what was it, beige... thing before him twitched feebly as it rolled onto its side.  Much of the exposed portion had been destroyed by something that looked it might have been their oak.

Huh.

"Thanks, bud.  I'll be needing that."  Freyd reached over and removed the wooden paddle, which had somehow survived Oscar's use of it with his super-charged attack.  Calculating once more, he grabbed what was left of the boat's gunnels with one hand and reached back to poke the well-battered fish behind him.  It burst into an explosion of light an instant later, popping like a punctured puffer fish and giving him enough momentum to cruise to shore like Jack Sparrow into Port Royal on little more than a projecting mast.  

Stepping gingerly onto the pier, he casually strolled over to find Oscar still peeling shells out of his face.

"Well.  That wasn't so bad, was it?"

Spoiler

Freyd, The Whisper in Shadows | HP:1024/1130 | EN:84/110  | DMG:22 | MIT:79 | EVA:4 | ACC:4 | KEEN:1 | HLY:6 | BLD:36 | BH:22
Oscar | HP: 1390/1390 | EN: 119/136 | DMG 23 | MIT: 106 | EVA: 3 | ACC: 5 | FLN: 12 | BRN(2): 36

Galaxy Destroyer (x13): 13 EN - (Finesse 3, Turn Recovery) = 9 EN

ID 168854, BD: 4+4 = 8 (hit).  Freyd deals (13*22 = 286 - 20 = 266) damage to King of Lakes

[3,3] The King of Lakes | HP: 0/1200 | DMG: 125 | MIT 20 (35 - 266)

Freyd recovers 22 hp from battle healing.

 

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By the time Freyd had made it back to the pier, Oscar had already made the walk back. All things considered, he couldn't really bring himself to be too angry. After all, he wasn't the one who had taken an involuntary dunk into the lake. His hands shoved into his pockets, Oscar watched as Freyd glided onto the pier. It reminded him of a movie he'd seen years ago but he couldn't place it. Either way, they had the quest boss down and could finally be done with this nonsense. So much the better because Oscar had another fish quest to do. In response to Freyd's question, Oscar nodded and then cocked and eyebrow. He opened his menu, scrolling through and highlighting one of the items within. He turned the menu to show Freyd the details of another quest he'd yet to clear. "Lurker?" A simple question. One of them was already soaked. They couldn't get into much more trouble at this point.

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Freyd grimaced, squinting suspiciously.

"What are you implying?  Oh!  You mean the fish.  Yeah, I could do that.  It's still on my list."  He pulled off his soaking mop-of-a-cowl, looking strangely like he was trying to peel a vacuum cleaner off his head.  Freyd's seriousness and sudden change of tone caught Oscar off guard.  "That was some catch you may with Haine, by the way, during the fight again Skalaugh.  Thanks for that.  I appreciate that you were looking out for a friend of mine.  And, if you don't mind my saying, you don't quite seem to be your usual chipper self of late.  Did something happen?"  Freyd knew he was prying, but had gotten a good read on this companion during their forays on floor nine.  Something wasn't right, and he meant to find out why.

As the two men walked back towards the teleportation portal, the last vestiges of their boat creaked and sank below the waves.

 

Thread Rewards:

All players receive:

5 SP (1 page, +3 quest, +1 event)

200 col

1x Filet of King (T3 Perfect Meal - OH +135 HP)

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