• Quest Friends!

Ep. 18: Tales from Fasten

Updated: Apr 29, 2019

For our heroes, even a day off is full of adventure.

Listen as they:

FLAUNT questionable virtues!

SHARPEN their voices!

AUDITION for an escape!

TRANSCRIPT (Downloadable Version):

Previously, on Quest Friends…

[Opening theme, “Friends” by Miracle of Sound, begins.]

Kyle (as Passerby)

Oh boy! I’m sure excited to meet the queen and give her this gift that I got for her.

Kyle

And it’s a macaroni drawing that says “I love you, <3 Barry.”

Hallie (as Hopper)

Are you asking the queen for medicine?

Tom (as Xoc)

What sort of medicine does she need?

Kyle (as “Hairy” Jerry)

I don’t know, she got down with this weird sickness. It was like she got bitten by a spider or something.

Tom

Xoc will turn back to the guy and say:

Tom (as Xoc)

I swear to you, on my honor as a wizard, that if you assist us in getting inside the palace, we will find medicine for your daughter.

Kyle

You realize, Misha, you don’t remember anything.

Ari

It happened again! No!

Kyle

What is everyone else doing?

Tom

So while that banter was happening, Xoc just went down, with one last telepathic message to Misha saying:

Tom (as Xoc, telepathically to Misha)

It’s okay, Misha Jarvis, I’m not going to die here. I’m gonna come back for you.

Kyle (as Gendarme Soldier)

Everyone else thought you were still on the outside, but I saw you with my own two eyes! I knew you were clever enough to get inside of here!

[Opening theme intensifies, transitioning into quick, uplifting piano music.]

Kyle

The sun rises the same in Fasten. Every day, it gently rests its warm beams over each wooden slat of each hand-built house, and the town’s folk slowly rise from the full embrace of their woolen sheets to the comforting prospect of another day, same as the last, and same as the next. Some might find the consistency stilting, but the townsfolk of Fasten know that in a world where one week can change entire landscapes, it’s important to preserve spaces outside of time. And as this sleepy town slowly awakes, so too do four weary adventurers, each with their own story to tell.

[Piano music fades.]

Kyle

So it’s later in the day when Xoc originally woke up from that whole experience in Charmonde. You were able to talk a little bit to Mako, but he made it pretty clear that it was important that everyone took a day to rest and relax while he got everything kind of fixed and was able to meet with you. So Mako says he’s going to meet with you tomorrow but has made a very big importance that everyone takes the day to explore the town of Fasten, which is this adorable, tiny little town a couple hours away from Charmonde if you’re going by water-powered landboat. So everybody is gonna to have their own little moment of time to explain kind of what they’re doing over the course of this day, and we’re going to start with Xoc, who is actually the same as Jacques! I just am finally pronouncing his name right, after two entire arcs!

Tom

It’s fine. Xoc would never correct someone on how to pronounce his name.

Emily

Oh no!

Tom

Quick question: Should we describe our mechanical level-ups first before we get into the story time, or?

Kyle

Yeah! And I mentioned a couple of episodes ago that I was getting rid of the typical leveling up, and we were going to level up at the end of each arc.

[Ponderous elevator music begins as Kyle goes into explaining how leveling up works in Quest Friends.]

Kyle

So we have done two arcs, which means we are leveling up from tier one to tier three. That gives us a whole bunch of goodies to play with! But for simplicity’s sake, we’re gonna focus on two things: We’re gonna focus on skills, which are basically things that make any sort of task easier. And then there are also abilities, which are special things that people can do that just other people just flat out can’t. Like I can try my hardest to lift something. I can’t even try to shoot laser beams from my eyes. I mean, I have, but it hasn’t had any sort of result, while at least lifting something has had minimal effect.

Tom

[Laughter.]

Ari

That’s disappointing, Kyle.

Kyle

I know, it’s so sad. Although actually it was Cyclops, like—I mean, he wears pretty cool shades, so I’d be cool wearing those shades all the time. [Awkward laughter.] Anyway, Tom, how did you level up?

Tom

Well, because I was on top of things and leveling up the whole time, I was actually mostly to tier three before we decided to make our switch.

Hallie

Boo!

Tom

So my level up is not as dramatic as some others. But Xoc has a couple of new things. Uh, the rest of the party would have noticed, as they traveled with Xoc, but any time he got some free time, he’s off on his own doing some minor magic tricks. Like playing around with cards, trying to like get coins out from behind his own ear. That sort of thing. Not the sort of magic necessarily that Nanos do, but he’s been very interested in sleight of hand and magic tricks. And if ever asked about that, he would just say that, you know, as a great wizard, he wants to cultivate and understand all forms of magic. So Xoc is now specialized in sleight of hand, because this is what I did for my last two level ups, just focused on getting this skill up. And this level up, I took the ability countermeasures, which I will describe in character, later on. Don’t worry about it.

[5:31]

Kyle

This will kind of get into the story. So Xoc, you no longer have the spiders!

Tom

Wooo.

Kyle

When you woke up, after getting that beautiful hugging moment with all your friends, you realized that you were able to, for the first time in like a week, think clearly. And I don’t know if you tested it at all or if there’s anything you did to try to be like, am I still getting the visions? Can I do esoteries easier? Is there spider in me? Was there anything you did to check for that?

Tom

Uhh. So I would guess that Xoc would feel the difference, right? And knowing what they went there to do, and what he just went through, I think he can put two and two together. But if he spoke with Mako at all, like in the immediate aftermath, he probably would have asked if there were any lingering effects, if there were still spiders in there, that sort of thing.

Kyle

Mako wouldn’t have gone into detail, but he would have told you that he was able to basically get most of it out.

Tom

Okay.

Kyle

The important mechanical thing is that you can actually—you don’t get a penalty for doing intelligence things anymore.

Tom

Oh!

Kyle

So you’re no longer useless!

Tom

Oh!

Kyle

So with this new kind of swing in your step, what are you doing for you day off?

Tom

After getting the news that Mako wanted them to take a day off, Xoc might have seemed a little huffy. It’s hard to say, because he still isn’t very good at expressing his emotions. But the party might have noticed he felt a little off, and he decided to go off into the marketplace. And he is going to try to hunt down a merchant who deals in microchips or other spare parts.

Kyle

You’ve been going from stall to stall: Amy’s Aneen Accessories, Jacques’ Mustache Emporium—

Tom

Get the fuck out!

Kyle

And you’re currently at Harold Houdano’s House of Escapes, [Laughter.] which has a whole manner of escape things, nothing nearly as impressive as how this stall has escaped the definition of house, because it’s really just kind of like a cardboard box. There’s not really much to it. But you’re pretty desperate at this point. So you’re standing there and you’ve been talking to this guy a little bit. How has this negotiation been going with Harold Houdano?

Tom

Oh, Xoc is looking for something fairlyspecific. He’s definitely received an upgrade to his offensive power, and he has a lot of different abilities. But he’s very concerned about protecting himself and the rest of the party. So Xoc wants to improve those defensive capabilities. So he’s looking for the sort of chip that could give him, you know, a command signal. The sort of thing that would make anything connected to the Datasphere or nanites or any such effect shut down or cancel out.

Kyle

You’ve been talking to this guy. He’s been pulling out a whole variety of definitions of chips. One of which seems to be just a piece of cardboard that he kind of magic markered a chip drawing on. You haven’t had a whole lot of success trying to get things from this guy. But you’ve kept on negotiating and eventually, after awhile, you see Loell, that boy who was in the room when you woke up, kind of lean against it and turn to you and just say:

Kyle (as Loell)

Listen, man, I told ya: The chip thing is right over there.

Kyle

And he points over to Cherry’s Chip Stand, which sells a whole variety of potato chips.

Tom

Xoc gives him a clearly frustrated side-eye and doesn’t say anything to him at first.

Kyle (as Loell)

Listen, man, if you’re not going to tell me anything, I can’t help ya find the chip ya want. I don’t even know what—your name is Xoc, right? That’s what people seem to call you?

Tom

Xoc steps away from the stall he’s at, and without really looking back at Loell just says:

Tom (as Xoc)

[Blandly.] Yeah. That’s my name. Why are you here?

Kyle (as Loell)

See? Xoc! Now we have a start. We’re going somewhere, buddy. And I said, I am here to help you find a chip. So what are you looking for?

Tom

Xoc lowers his hood, opens the hatch in the side of his head, and points to the interface there and says:

Tom (as Xoc)

I would have thought you would know by now, you know? All things considered.

Kyle (as Loell)

That is disgusting! But it does explain a lot.

Tom

He shuts it, pulls the hood back up.

Tom (as Xoc)

It’s just my spellbook, you know? Think of it like that.

Kyle

And as you keep walking, you suddenly find yourself by this big shed that has a lot of hammering and whirring sounds from within it, and as you turn over to look at it you see Loell standing in the doorway and he looks back at you and says:

Kyle (as Loell)

Hey, there’s a whole lot of metal in here. I mean, that’s what chips are made out of, right?

Tom

Xoc enters the building.

Kyle

Yeah, so you enter the building and you do see a whole bunch of stuff in it. It seems like a big shed, there are a couple of things being worked on, a couple of inventions, suits, some numenera that seems to be modified. And in the center of it, working on a fairly hefty vehicle, is a pretty pretty and pretty buff woman with a bit of a handlebar who turns over to you and says:

Kyle (as Woman)

Hey! How can I help you?

[10:25]

Kyle

I sound like Mako! I’m going to change my voice. Just give me a second to think about it. You can talk to me while I figure out what my new voice is.

Tom

I apparently need to figure out Xoc’s voice, too. I feel like I’m doing it wrong.

Kyle

We’re having a weird day here today. Sometimes the Datasphere just like, you know, it kind of Freaky Fridays our voices.

Tom

Uh, Xoc, reminded as if by divine intervention, closes his eyes, sits down on the ground, and contacts the Datasphere with my connection power.

[The Datasphere chimes into existence.]

Kyle (as Datasphere)

Hey Xoc, long time no see, buddy. We were scared for a moment. We couldn’t even contact you. Oh hey, you made a friend!

Kyle

And Loell who is kind of in the corner turns back to you and waves.

Kyle (as Datasphere)

It’s nice to see you’re finally gettin’ to know people for once, Xoc.

Tom

Xoc doesn’t say anything for a moment.

Kyle (as Datasphere)

What can I help you with? Or are you just here to talk to us for once? Because it has been awhile.

Tom (as Xoc)

I’m looking for a specific part, a control chip. Where can I find it in town.

Kyle (as Datasphere)

Hmm…

Kyle

You can feel the spirit almost leave you for a second and kind of leave through the door as if a gust of wind. And then it comes back and says:

Kyle (as Datasphere)

Well I mean there was a chip stand outside.

Kyle

And Loell pipes in:

Kyle (as Loell)

That’s what I said!

Kyle (as Datasphere)

It sounds like you’re not looking to eat anything. Hmm.

Kyle

You hear them hum to themselves as they kind of move around the space, and finally they come back and say:

Kyle (as Datasphere)

Well, it seems like the kind of chip you’re looking for seems to be what’s on that nice lady over there’s belt.

Kyle

And you can see that this woman has this power drill with a slot at the bottom where she can slip out chips. And she has this whole belt, kind of like Batman’s utility belt, where she’s able to flip out chips for different purposes, as the head of the screwdriver thing kind of changes shape to whatever she’s trying to fit it for.

Tom (as Xoc)

Oh, well that was easy.

Tom

And Xoc will pop back up, speaking to the woman who has presumably just been standing there this whole time as Xoc sits on the floor of the warehouse and says:

Tom (as Xoc)

I need that, please.

Tom

And he’ll point at the specific chip.

Kyle

She’s going to look down and look up.

Kyle (as Woman)

[Uncertainly.] I just want to make something clear, you’re not like, doing a stick-up or something right now, are you?

Tom (as Xoc)

No, I have money.

Tom

[Whispers.] Do I have money?

Kyle

[Laughter.] In fact, Loell pipes in and he says:

Kyle (as Loell)

Do you have money? Or are we doing a stick-up? I need to know. I can’t be involved in a stick-up, Xoc.

Tom (as Xoc)

[Uncertainly.] Uh, I have money.

Tom

And he fishes out four shins.

Tom (as Xoc)

I can also work for it. I work sometimes.

Kyle (as Woman)

Alright, alright. Well, what can you do?

Tom (as Xoc)

Do you need anything cut? Like some really thick metal?

Kyle (as Woman)

Well, yeah, actually I do.

Kyle

And she goes back to the back of the vehicle and she kind of shows you some things that need to get cut and need to get taken care of.

Tom (as Xoc)

Alright.

Kyle

And so we’re going to flash forward to a few hours later. This woman, Lorellia, has been just super helpful. It looks like she seems to be the town mechanic. So she’s been helping you out, and especially once she found out that you were a part of the party that brought in Mako to help heal Jerry’s daughter, Rosemary, she’s more than happy to give you that chip. And so now we’re at the end of the day as you’re leaving, and Loell just says:

Kyle (as Loell)

Huh. Nothing like a day of hard labor to get a … chip for your brain.

Tom (as Xoc)

Well that was only just the start, you realize.

Tom

And Xoc sits down outside in the ground, opens up the hatch again, and sets up a mirror just so he can see more clearly the slot where he plugs it in. And then Loell would see him start tinkering with the glove. Xoc’s left hand is the one that has the glove for cutting light on it. But he starts building a second glove for his right hand, with little mechanical bits that go over the knuckles in the fingers, almost up to the tips, and then stretch back into the glove by the wrist. And after a few minutes of piecing this together he holds it up, shuts the hatch in his head, and starts flexing his fingers in the air, and a sort of holographic light display appears in front of it and can be moved around a little bit. And then Xoc nods and says:

Tom (as Xoc)

With this, I can shut down just about anything. As long as it’s numenera, anyway. I can deflect attacks, I can turn things off. I have to be touching it in order to use it, but this will work.

Tom

And then, Xoc will stand up again, face Loell, and say:

[Light piano music begins.]

Tom (as Xoc)

You’ve been here all day and you still haven’t answered my question: Why are you here, what do you want with me, why are you in my head?

[15:00]

[Piano music continues, then fades.]

Kyle

Alright, Hop. So now it is your day.

Hallie

Uh, should I do my level-up stuff?

Kyle

Yeah! What are your new skills and abilities?

Hallie

Well my new skills—well this isn’t a new skill, but my parkour skill, I am now specialized in. So parkour all day every day. And then I also gave myself skills in perception and stealth.

Kyle

Okay.

Hallie

Um, and then my abilities, I gave myself “experienced adventurer”. I definitely know what that does off the top of my head, and I definitely typed it in my thing. [Strange sound over mic.] Ow! Oh, I found it. When I use a non-combat skill successfully, if I did not roll a natural 19 or 20, I can apply a level of effort after the roll to get a minor special effect.

Kyle

Yeah, so if you climb something and you succeed, you can put an effort to succeed a little better than usual.

Hallie

To succeed like, real good, because I’m an experienced adventurer.

Kyle

Not real good, because it’s not a major effect, it’s pretty good.

Hallie

Pretty good.

Kyle

Hop’s pretty pretty and he succeeds pretty good.

Hallie

[Laughter.] Yes. And then my other thing, I now have mind-reading abilities.

Emily and Tom

Ooooh!

Hallie

Which we flavored as the influence of the pin, because I’ve had it on me for so long.

Emily

Ah, that’s a good idea!

Hallie

Because Hop doesn’t have any magic abilities, but the pin lets him tell what people are thinking with his excellent observation skills, and we’re flavoring it: I get three questions, two yes or no, one open-ended, right?

Kyle

Yeah, so the way I have it written down on your character sheet is, “by analyzing their mannerisms, you can interpret the inner thoughts and feelings of a target. You can ask the GM three questions about what the target is thinking. Two must be yes or no, but the third can be open-ended.” And it’s not like you have to ask two yes or no and then one open-ended. You could start with an open-ended question and ask two yes or no.

Hallie

So that’s what Hop’s got going on.

Kyle

So that’s what he’s got going on skill-wise.

Hallie

Skill-wise.

Kyle

But what’s he got going on life-wise? What’s he doing in this day in this town?

Hallie

Well life-wise, I think he was the only one wearing his normal clothes throughout this whole sewer adventure. And he likes his clothes, so he’s going to go get them properly cleaned at the dry cleaners today. They needed professional cleaning.

Kyle

You go into the dry cleaners, which is this pretty small establishment, kind of off the main road. And as you enter, you see this large, hairy man who turns over to you and says:

Kyle (as large, hairy man)

[Excitedly.] Oh! Mr. Scotch! Thank--

Kyle

--Why does everyone sound like Mako?

Hallie

Because his voice is the best, obviously!

Kyle

Uh, fuck it, okay. He’s like:

Kyle (as large, hairy man)

Hey, mister—

Kyle

And now I sound like a little boy! In fact, yes, you’re gonna see a little boy—

All

[Laughter.]

Kyle

You’re gonna see a man, a large, hairy man in the back who’s been working on dry cleaning, and you’re going to see a little boy turn around who’s been drawing with a pencil that shoots out pieces of macaroni, and he’s gonna say:

Kyle (as little boy)

Well hello, Mr. Scotch! It’s super nice to meet you again! Thanks for saving my sister!

Hallie (as Hopper)

Oh hey, Barry. Yeah, nice to see you.

Kyle (as Barry)

Well hi! I’m in charge of taking orders today. Can I help you?

Hallie (as Hopper)

Oh, um.

Hallie

Well, so he would have changed into like what his other clothes are in his explorer’s pack.

Kyle

Alright, what are his other clothes?

Hallie

I don’t know, they’re the same, well like, it’s just another like button up shirt. He’s only got the one jacket and hat and stuff, but he has like extra button ups and khaki pants or whatever in his—

Kyle

Can I as the GM flavor that the reason you don’t wear it normally is that there’s a little tag on the side that says “Cool Kids Come From Qi?”

Hallie

[Laughter.] No! Why would I have that?

Kyle

Because it’s something you just got on your adventures.

Hallie

He just picked it up. He only cares about the one good set of clothes he has. He tries to wear that most often, which is why he’s going to get them nicely cleaned today. He’s wearing his stupid extra clothes that he doesn’t like that is like a tourist shirt that [Laughter.] he bought from Qi, and he’s going to hold out his normal clothes he’s holding like:

Hallie (as Hopper)

Well, they got kind of dirty after our whole debacle there, so uh, can I have these cleaned today?

Kyle (as Barry)

Oh! Of course! Do you have money?

Hallie (as Hopper)

I do. How much would it cost? I have 13 shins.

Kyle (as Barry)

Oh, that’s too much money.

Hallie (as Hopper)

[Uncertain.] How about, um, 10 shins?

Kyle (as Barry)

Uhh…

Hallie (as Hopper)

[Voice gaining in confidence with each suggestion.] Eight shins? Five shins? Two shins?

Kyle

He just gets a tap on his—he gets a tap from his dad, who kind of just motions and gives him two fingers up, and he’s like:

Kyle (as Barry)

[Confidently.] Two shins!

Hallie (as Hopper)

Alright, two shins!

Hallie

And I will hand them to the kid.

Kyle (as Barry)

Thank you! Can I have your clothes, please, for dry cleaning?

Hallie (as Hopper)

Yes you may.

Hallie

And then I’ll hand them to him.

Kyle (as Barry)

Okay!

Kyle

And he kind of slumps over all these clothes, and like the hat I think just kind of fell on his head and is like covering everything except for his mouth. And he gets off of the stool that he was on and he starts kind of waddling to the back. And as he does that, the door opens and you see a frowning man, although this time it’s more awkward and anxious than angry, with a large mustache walk up to you and say:

[20:19]

Kyle (as Don)

Mr. Scotch?

Hallie (as Hopper)

Uh, yes? How can I help you?

Kyle (as Don)

[Speaking very slowly.] Uh, so back in Charmonde, you said you would write me a letter of recommendation?

Hallie

Oh, this is Don?

Kyle

Yeah.

Hallie

Okay, well I would recognize Don, so I would change that to:

Hallie (as Hopper)

What can I do for you, Don?

Kyle

Okay, and then he says what he says.

Hallie (as Hopper)

Okay. Uh, yeah. That still holds. When do you want it by?

Kyle (as Don)

Uh, well, I’m applyin’ for a job in five minutes.

All

[Laughter.]

Hallie (as Hopper)

Why didn’t you give me a warning?!

Kyle (as Don)

Um, well, I was busy applying!

Hallie (as Hopper)

God! Uh, okay. Um, can I say I have like a notebook?

Kyle

No.

Hallie

No?

Kyle

I’m going to say you left your notebook at home—

Hallie

Oh my God.

Kyle

Because you were carrying all the clothes.

Hallie

Um, okay. Uh—

Kyle

If you want, I can make it a GM Intrusion, but no, you don’t have a notebook.

Hallie

I don’t have a notebook. Uh, can I turn to Barry’s dad? Is he still in the background? And ask how long it will take for my clothes to be cleaned?

Kyle

You just hear the whirring and washing of the—well, it’s a dry cleaner’s. You hear whatever sounds happen at a dry cleaner’s. And it’s kind of overwhelming whatever you’re yelling.

Hallie

Coat hangers squeaking by on poles. That’s what I think they sound like.

Kyle

Yeah, just a bunch of squeaking coat hangers. In fact, one of the hangers you could swear is just staring at you and going squeak, squeak, squeak, squeak.

Hallie (as Hopper)

Alright. Well, um, I’m sure this will take like an hour or so. Would it help if I went with you?

Kyle (as Don)

Uh, if you would be willing to.

Hallie (as Hopper)

Well I don’t have time to write you a letter. I didn’t know you had an interview in five minutes.

Kyle

Okay, I guess we’re gonna have an interview!

Hallie

Well, what did you need? I don’t—I didn’t—

Kyle

Um, yeah, so you flash forward and you are at the interview for kind of a caravan near the outside of town that seems to be kind of going from place to place and needs someone to help them move things and provide a little bit of support. Some of the job requirements, as Don says, is the ability to stay standing for 72 hours straight, which he claims is about like half of what he’s used to. So yeah, you’re going to walk up and you’re going to see this lady, she’s going to turn around and say:

Kyle (as Lady)

Oh, Don, it’s a pleasure to see you today. Here for the job application?

Kyle (as Don)

Yes I am, and this is my letter of recommendation, uh, Hopper Scotch.

Kyle (as lady)

Oh, I didn’t know letters looked like people now.

Hallie (as Hopper)

[Nervous laughter.] Hi, uh, this is so, uh, I didn’t know he had an interview today, so I didn’t have time to write a proper letter. So I thought I’d come by and just offer my recommendation in person.

Kyle (as lady)

Okay, so what can you tell me about Don’s ability to do heavy labor, starting with all of his positions over the last seven years?

[Dramatic music begins.]

Hallie (as Hopper)

Um, I haven’t known Don for very long, but for the short time that I have known him, he has lifted many a heavy object, and well.

Kyle (as lady)

Such as what?

Hallie (as Hopper)

Uhh—

Hallie

[Laughter.] can I roll a memory roll to see if I can remember literally any time I’ve actually seen him?

Kyle

This is a roll-less session.

Hallie

Fine. Um—

Hallie (as Hopper)

He lifted a big rock, once.

Hallie

Hopper is just lying now.

Kyle (as lady, unimpressed)

Oh, a big rock, you say? How big was it?

Hallie (as Hopper)

Bigger than most rocks.

Kyle (as lady)

Oh, I’ve seen some pretty big rocks.

Kyle

And Don’s going to lean over to you and say:

Kyle (as Don)

What are you doing? I don’t like to lie. I don’t like rocks, they’re coarse and hurt my hands and they’re all pointy. They have a million stabs in them.

Hallie

They get everywhere!

Hallie (as Hopper)

Um, he lifted a grown woman once, who was unconscious--

[The dramatic music comes to a sudden halt.]

--and unconscious people are usually heavier than conscious people.

[Silence.]

Kyle

There is a long, long pause.

Hallie (as Hopper)

[Desperately.] Well, well it wasn’t weird! It was like—we were getting her out of a dangerous situation! It wasn’t weird!

Kyle

And you can see a tumbleweed just slowly go by all of your feet. And the woman looks back and says:

Kyle (as lady)

Hmm. That seems like a pretty good reason to hire somebody. But how can you prove that you can do it?

Hallie (as Hopper)

I can’t prove anything for Don, I’m just his reference. I’m just here to tell you he’s a really hard worker, he’s good at what he does, he’s got a lot of stamina, I think he’d be a good hire.

Kyle (as lady)

[Interrupting him.] Mr. Scotch, have you lifted individuals in the past? Are you a good frame of reference of how impressive it is to lift up an individual, conscious or unconscious?

Hallie (as Hopper)

Well, five minutes before Don did it, I tried to lift this unconscious individual, and I needed help. But Don did it.

Kyle (as lady)

Alright, Mr. Scotch. I will give Don the job, under one condition.

Hallie (as Hopper)

Oh.

Kyle

And she climbs on top of the caravan and turns her back to you, and you just hear her say:

Kyle (as lady)

Catch me!

[Piano music begins.]

Hallie

Me? Why me? Why me?

Kyle

I think that’s going to be the end of our session with Don.

[Piano music continues.]

[25:27]

Kyle

Hi, welcome to the announcement break for episode 18 of Quest Friends, the podcast you are currently listening to. My name is Kyle, I am the GM of the game and the announcer of the announcement break. As always, our intro and outro song are “Friends” and “Hitoshio,” both by Miracle of Sound. And announcement-wise, I’ve got two things for you! The first is that we have an official, actual website. It has your typical kind of stuff: Cast and character bios, a link to all of our episodes. It also has links to all our social media accounts, because we’ve got a lot more of those now. Specifically we have a Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, YouTube, and Instagram. The website also features some fun bonus features, such as character sheets, an artwork gallery, and my personal favorite, a section called “The Story So Far,” which contains about a two to four sentence summary of each individual episode. So if you’d like to get caught up on the plot so far but you don’t really want to go back to the older episodes and just want to start listening now, that part of the website will be really helpful to look at. Again, that website is questfriendspodcast.com. The other announcement is that our next episode is gonna start the next arc of our story. And if you want a little sample of what might be happening during that arc, we have a little promo teaser that will be premiering at the end of this episode. So just listen to the end of the music, and then the promo will start playing. Besides that, that’s all I’ve got. My only call to action is to check out the website and/or check out the promo. And of course, tune in with us for our next episode on Monday, July 9. I’ll see you then.

[Piano theme resumes, then fades.]

Kyle

We’re on to Elee now. Elee’s day. So Elee, tell me about your upgrades.

Emily (as Elee)

I mean, first of all, do I sound enough like a normal person or do we need to play it that Elee is sick? Do I sound like normal?

Kyle

I think you’re fine.

Emily

Okay.

Tom

You’re fine. I wouldn’t have known.

Emily

[Coughs.]

Tom

Now I know, because you coughed, but—

Hallie

Way to ruin the illusion, Emily.

Emily

[Fakes vomiting noise.] So, as far as my level up, I may have accidentally leveled my focus up to tier three at Penny In Pocket without realizing it, because in the focus fuses flesh and steel, you can incorporate a weapon into your body. I did that, not realizing that it was a tier-three level up. So we kind of played fast and loose with what we leveled up. We did some skills. So I have “lifting heavy objects”.

Tom

[Hysterical laughter.]

Hallie

Why don’t they just hire you?

Emily

[Hysterical Laughter.] Okay, anyway, I also am now trained in might defense. And the most important level up, I am trained in babysitting.

Tom

What? This is—I feel like this is a very personal attack on certain members of this party.

Emily

Also as far as my weapons we upgraded, you know how like a taser has those wires and you shoot it out and they’re connected to the wires?

Tom

Yeah. Yeah, I was nodding, but I realize my camera is off.

Kyle

Oops.

Emily

[Laughter.] So my Wolverine fist, I can now shoot out the lil’ weapons and then draw them back in with wires.

Kyle

Yeah, essentially we had decided that during this break period, Elee will have pulled out the claws and then basically used just chicken wire to attach them to her hands, so now she can use them short or shoot them out as a ranged weapon. I am going to say that the ranged weapon is worth four just because part of the reason the claws were so powerful is they supplemented your punch.

Emily

Yeah, which makes total sense. And I gained “inner defense”, which is trained in resistance to efforts to discern feelings, beliefs, or plans. Also resisting torture, telepathic intrusion, and mind control.

Kyle

So essentially anyone tries to mess with her brain, they’re going to have a bad time.

Emily

Elee will just think about all the times she’s pounded metal directly into her flesh.

Kyle

Okay, and with that cheery thing, let’s get on the subject of the babysitting skill!

Emily

Well, I also—do we need to go—do we need to play through this weird healing process, or can I just heal myself?

Kyle

You can just heal yourself. So one of the things is that healing is a bit weird for Misha and Elee, and each of them have their own little modifications. So for Elee we have decided instead of doing what we normally do, she’s just going to lose her first recovery roll of each day, just because that’s easier than kind of what they have in the rulebook. Alright, so Elee, this is your day off, what are you doing?

[30:21]

Emily

Well, I was kind of hoping to invite Mauve for a walk, because with all of this using my fists as heavy weapons, I may have dulled the blades a little bit—probably not, but like, getting your hand blades sharpened is a really good bonding activity for older women. So I’d like to invite Mauve out to go get my claws sharpened.

Kyle

Okay. So you are outside of the metalcure station,

All

[Laughter.]

Kyle

And you’re just kind of sitting on the bench, and Mauve, after a bit of an awkward silence, is going to turn over and say:

Kyle (as Mauve)

Alright, I’m going to be honest, I’m not quite sure why you invited me to get my claws sharpened. I don’t have claws.

Emily (as Elee)

[Speaking slowly and deliberately with great effort.] Well, so I tend to be a very forward person with what I’m thinking, so I’m just going to lay it out there. I’m here to get my claws sharpened, and try to bond with you. Because we are both older women who are badass, and I feel like it would be beneficial to be allies.

Kyle (as Mauve)

Well, I appreciate the compliment.

Kyle

She raises her hand, and you can see, jutting out of it, is the end of her rapier, kind of jutting out of her sleeve. And she says:

Kyle (as Mauve)

Do you think if I keep it underneath my sleeve, they’ll think it’s part of my hand and I can get it sharpened?

All

[Laughter.]

Emily (as Elee)

I mean, it’s worth a try. And if not, we can always just look really scary and they’ll do it anyway.

All

[More laughter.]

Kyle (as Mauve)

Well, I suppose so. I don’t know what you’re going on about us not being allies though, you helped me save my husband. Not just anybody would do that.

Emily (as Elee)

Well, I mean, you helped save those...allies I’ve been traveling with.

All

[Pained noises and laughter.]

Kyle (as Mauve)

You know, some day you’re going to have to admit when friends are friends.

Emily (as Elee)

Those friends have gotten themselves into a lot of trouble. I want friends that are going to stick around, and I don’t know if these ones will.

Tom and Hallie

[Pained sighing and groans.]

Kyle

She’s going to turn over to you and look back and says:

Kyle (as Mauve)

I know, I’m planning on talking to ‘em, but his heart was in the right place when he ran off without you.

Tom

[Pained sighing.]

Kyle (as Mauve)

It’s hard to remember that sometimes.

Emily (as Elee)

I can punch anything that comes at them, if I’m there.

Kyle (as Mauve)

Well, then I guess the important thing to do is to be there. And if you leave ‘em, well that’s the farthest from there you can get.

Emily (as Elee)

Don’t I know it.

Kyle

And you sit there for a little bit, and suddenly you hear a woman screaming:

Kyle (as woman, screaming)

My baby! My baby!

Kyle

And then she runs up to you:

Kyle (as woman)

I need someone to watch my baby!

[Whimsical, staccato music begins.]

Emily (as Elee)

Calm down, lady! I thought an aneen was carrying your baby off! Chill!

Tom

[Laughter.]

Kyle (as woman)

No! That filthy aneen ex-husband of mine tried to, but I got child rights!

Hallie

Child rights!

Emily (as Elee)

Congratulations?

Kyle (as woman)

But now I need my metalcure done, and I need someone to watch my baby!

Emily (as Elee)

Ooh, you’re getting a metalcure, too?

Kyle (as woman)

Yes! It’s for the knives in my throat! That’s why I sound like this!

Emily (as Elee)

[Laughter.] Are those very useful?

Kyle (as woman)

Absolutely not! But I can’t eat that much with my teeth, so it helps cut up the food!

Tom

[Laughter.] What the fuck, Kyle?

Emily

[Laughter.] I’m sorry, just give me a minute.

Kyle (as woman)

Will you watch my baby?

[Whimsical music fades.]

Tom

Kyle, Kyle, you saw a sincere moment and thought, no, I’m going to make it weird again.

Hallie

[Laughter.] “I’ve got to ruin it.”

Tom

Oh my God.

Emily

[Laughter.] Okay. Okay you guys, I’m okay.

Emily (as Elee)

Well, I guess I can’t leave a fellow metal-body in need. I could watch it for a minute.

Kyle

As you say that, you just see a trail of dust, as the woman had already run in, and you just hear a brief voice say:

Kyle (as woman)

Why thank you!

Emily

Where’s the baby?

Kyle

Oh, the baby is in the carriage right in front of you.

Emily

Oh, okay.

Kyle

And it is sickeningly adorable. It’s just like, it’s sitting there and it’s all squishy, and it’s like, it looks like a little old man, you know like how the really cute babies just look like really old, grumpy men? And it’s just like:

Kyle (as baby, but sounding like an old, grumpy man)

Wehh!

[35:10]

Emily

Elee puts on the toughest face she can, because she’s tough.

Kyle

Yeah, the baby stares at you stone-faced for a second, and then just starts crying.

Emily (as Elee)

Shit! What do I do?

Kyle (as Mauve)

How--I don’t know!

Emily (as Elee)

Mauve, fix it!

Kyle (as Mauve)

I don’t know, the oldest kid I work with is Everett!

Emily (as Elee)

He’s like a baby!

Kyle (as Mauve)

Yeah, well, I don’t know, can we give him a hat? That’s what I do when Everett gets upset!

All

[Laughter.]

Kyle

How are you going to take care of this baby? You’ve got this skill in babysitting—you’re gonna fucking earn it.

Emily

[Laughter.] I’m going to take out my claws very, like turn around, not facing the baby, just so there’s no chance, and take out my claws and then turn around and hold them up, like hold them up in the air and move my hand back and forth so that the sun shines on them, and they sparkle.

Kyle

The baby stops crying for a little bit and is like:

Kyle (as baby)

Ohhhh…

Kyle

And then starts crying again.

Emily

Okay, that’s probably actually for the best, because like, if it reached for it.

Kyle

Do you want me to go back and have it reach for it instead?

Emily

No!

Kyle

Yeah, no, it starts crying…

Emily

No! We already—no, you don’t let us re-do rolls, I am not going to let you go and make this terrible.

Kyle

Uh, you go, well no, but when you retract your claws it cries harder.

Emily

I’m going to lean down, like kind of kneel on the ground so my head is about level with the baby, and I’m going to move my head back and forth and let all the things on my hat kind of jingle.

Kyle (as baby, awed)

Ohhh!

Kyle

And it seems to be getting better, but it looks like he could cry any second.

Emily

Oh, I—I want to take on of the pearl strings off and wave it in front of the baby like, oh, look at this. Then I’m going to hum:

Emily (as Elee)

[Hums a tune.]

Kyle

And as you hum this tune, the baby slowly starts to calm down and starts to actually fall asleep.

Emily (as Elee)

[Continues to hum.]

Kyle

And it’s a little bit later, and the woman has come back and she’s gotten her baby. The second she started talking, the baby actually remained quiet, because it’s used to her horrible, knife-filled throat.

Emily

[Laughter.] Before the baby leaves, I want to pluck one of the silk flowers off my hat and give it to the baby.

Kyle

The baby starts holding on to it, and then puts it in its mouth. It doesn’t swallow it, but it just goes:

Kyle (as baby)

[Makes nomming noises.]

Kyle

As babies are want to do with anything they are given.

Emily

Elee is going to look at it for a second, like should I stop this? It’s really dirty. But then she’ll think about it like, babies put everything in their mouth. It’s going to be fine.

Kyle

As you do that, as you leave, Mauve is going to turn over and say:

Kyle (as Mauve)

Well, you’re a real natural at this, aren’tcha?

Emily (as Elee)

I—that’s the first time I guess I’ve thought about it like that. Generally I think about the opposite.

Kyle (as Mauve)

Sometimes we’re the people who have the toughest time seein’ our own skills.

Emily

Elee clears her throat—[Clears throat.]—and says:

Emily (as Elee)

You know what? But speaking of songs, have you heard that kazoo?

Kyle (as Mauve)

Mm.

Emily (as Elee)

Have you?

Kyle (as Mauve)

That’s—huh. I’ve got to say, I can’t help but chuckle a little bit. I didn’t say anything about a song.

[Piano music plays, then fades.]

Kyle

Let’s do our final episode of the day. So Misha, before we get into everything, describe your new skills and abilities that you’ve gotten.

Ari

Alright. So I have a new kazoo song.

Tom

Oh!

Ari

Yeah, I got a new kazoo song, and I am going to say that Misha just has been kind of trying to learn new songs after the one that they knew didn’t really work as much for Xoc that one time. So I have this “aggression” skill where basically it’s this really annoying tune that if I play it, I just basically make them really primitive and angry and aggressive and stuff like that. And it mechanically just has an asset on my base attack rolls and stuff, but it’s just a thing that really annoys them and helps people fight better. So that’s a thing. Another thing that I have is shock to the system. So that one, it’s basically Misha floods the mind of a target with disturbing images and ideas and makes them unconscious or at least not able to function for two rounds on battle. And the way that I am going to flavor that is that Misha just hasn’t been in the best of places recently, especially since they got their memories back a second time. And so basically it’s where they just get too stressed and they just like project it to whoever is next to them, which is kind of a problem.

[40:39]

Kyle

Yeah, and the one thing to know about that for other players is that if that person gets damaged, the effect ends. So it’s kind of like if you have a bad dream and somebody pinches you, you wake up. So if someone gets hit during shock to the system, they get conscious and are probably more upset than they were before Misha knocked them out.

Ari

Yes, and another ability that I got is “fling.” So I am able to choose a creature or object that is my size or smaller, and, when in short range, I can violently launch it in a short distance. So I am just going to say that Misha doing the thing with Elee last session kind of, eh, it’s not the only time that they have done it or they did it and then they actually liked doing it so they have been practicing doing it with Elee for practice purposes. And so I want to potentially, specifically do it mostly with Elee, so as a kind of dual attack where I just choose her and toss her to enemies for major damage, since she’s so heavy.

Emily

[Laughter.] I’m so happy!

Ari

Yes. What other thing that I have that I didn’t have? Um, their connection to the Datasphere has gotten stronger. After they were able to regain the access to the Datasphere, after it being so close, it came back but it came back kind of with a punch, so I have that Datasphere update where basically at the beginning of one day I can receive a rush of images specifically for one specific thing on the Datasphere, and I can receive—I can become trained on a specific task each day, just for that one day, basically by receiving images of stuff from there.

Kyle

Yeah, and that will be—something I should explain about day mechanics is that if we go over the course of multiple days within a session, which for us every session is approximately every two episodes—if we go over multiple days, than Misha can update every day, otherwise once per session Ari will be able to use this ability. And to distinguish it a little bit from Hallie’s flex ability, which is basically the same thing, Hallie’s gonna choose hers at the beginning of each session, and Ari will be able to use this ability basically whenever she wants, but only once, and only for the remainder of that scene. Because, like for example our last arc took place over one day, and I don’t want Ari to—

Ari

Oh yeah.

Kyle

I don’t want people to have one-day abilities that they only get to use once every half a year.

Ari

Yeah, and that’s actually how I have been taking the one that I had before, like my Google thing. I have like, at the beginning of each session, or every session, have done it rather than every day. And then I’m trained in throwing, that’s tied to the thing that I have with Elee, and then I’m trained in a thing called master of disguise, because you know, they really like disguise themselves as something. They’re still impaired in persuasion, so even though they could disguise themselves as something that they’re not, that doesn’t mean that they can convince people if they are asked what specifically they are. So it’s kind of an interesting combination.

Kyle

Misha can easily convince people that they’re somebody, but then they’re fucked beyond that.

All

[Laughter.]

Ari

Yeah, basically.

Kyle

One last ability we have is overload device, which is basically using the Datasphere to deactivate a device. And we can go into more detail about that I guess when we use it.

Ari

Um, so yeah, so none of the things that I have necessarily require Misha to go out into town and get them. I mean, they are definitely not in a good place right now, and that’s a thing. But I assume that most of the day has gone by having their memories slowly come back after this arc, and all the implications that come with it.

Kyle

Yeah, let’s get into that. So as Ari said, all of Misha’s memories have come back, and they’ve come back kind of slowly. And one of the things that should be noted is that it’s not like Misha’s new memories have been overwritten. It’s not like, oh, you know, they have more memories about Elee being named Elee and not Elee, but Misha has both of those memories, and it will be up to Ari to figure out how they—

Ari

Yeah, so that’s why they’re kind of not in the best of places. It’s because they still have conflicting information and they have to figure out how to deal with that, so that’s a thing.

Kyle

Okay. So we’re at the end of the day, the sun is kind of setting, because you said you spent most of the day just kind of catatonic, right?

Ari

Yeah, I mean, while they were not necessarily catatonic, they were fiddling with their kazoo and such. But not really responsive. They were just like, practicing some songs and stuff.

Kyle

Getting out that aggression in that new, new tune which I am so excited to hear.

Ari

[Laughter.]

Kyle

Okay, so we’re near the end of the day, the sun is setting, and you’ve been doing that all day. So you’ve been sitting around most of the time, you’ve noticed, you know, people coming and going from the cabin that you were allowed to stay in. You know some of the other party members as they’ve gone about their day. You saw once at one point a bunch of kids go to see some kid band or something. You know, a band that performs.

Ari

Kidz Bop.

[45:20]

Kyle

For kiddos. And then they’ve come back. That seems to end, you know, pretty close to the end of the day. And then people are going in and out about their jobs.

Ari

Okay. By the time the kids come back, Misha has kind of come to a decision. And then what they’re going to do is first they’re going to grab, they’re going to look for a piece of paper or something that they can write something on, which I assume there will be something in the cabin somewhere.

Kyle

Yeah, there will be something on it.

Ari

Alright. So Misha is going to take the paper, write something down on it, and is going to put it in Xoc’s bed and take their scarf and put it also there, and then they’re going to just grab some stuff, their bat and all of that, and then they’re going to go out of the room and look for the kids that were outside, in the plaza.

Kyle

And they’re chattering around, they’re being like:

Kyle (as gaggle of kids)

Oh my God, that was so cool! I loved that! that was the best part of my tiny little time on this planet! There’s nothing better than Barry’s Baritone Band!

Ari

Um, so Misha’s gonna approach the kids and still going to be semi-serious, and then they’re going to be like:

Ari (as Misha)

Oh, salutations, young humans. My name is—

Ari

And they’re going to introduce themselves as they always do.

Ari (as Misha)

I could not help but overhear you talking about a spectacle that you attended. And I hear something about a band. Can you elaborate on it? I have been listening to you talk about it for awhile, but I had just decided to come and inquire about it.

Kyle

They all kind of circle around you in kind of a mini wave, just push you towards the band. This mob is just rushing towards it, and they’re like:

Kyle (as kids)

Mr. Barry! Mr. Barry!

Kyle

And you see this guy who is like, who is in a suit and looks middle-aged, and he’s like:

Kyle (as Barry)

Well actually, kids, my name is Barney.

Kyle (as Barney)

How can I help you today?

Ari (as Misha)

Oh, salutations mister—I believe your nomenclature is Barry the Baritone? My nomenclature is—

Ari

And then Misha is going to introduce themselves as they do. And then they’re going to be like:

Ari (as Misha)

Oh, I could not help but overhear that you are part of a band, and these young humans seem to be highly interested in your abilities. May I ask if you reside in this town, or what type of band do you form a part of?

Kyle (as Barney)

Well, we are Barney Baritone Band. So it’s me—I play the violin—and then we’ve got—and then we’ve got everyone else! Then we’ve got Emmy over there, who does the drums, and Jeffrey, who does some pretty cool guitar stuff. We don’t have our baritone player anymore, but we’re good ol’ family fun for all kids to enjoy! Are your parents here?

Ari

[Laughter.] Misha is going to first introduce themselves to the rest of the band, one by one, with her whole name. And then they’re going to look at Barney and they’re going to be like:

Ari (as Misha)

Oh, my apologies, no. I do not have a recollection of who my parents or creators are, but this is besides the point.

Kyle

In fact, you get a little upset at the word parents. Something inside you just gets upset when you hear that.

Ari

Okay. So, okay, so when they hear that, they’re just—they’re going to look a little bit taken aback, and then they re going to say:

Ari (as Misha)

[Slowly at first.] I do not have parental figures. Please refrain from inquiring this question again, Mr. Barney the Baritone. My uh--

Kyle (as Barney)

Just Barney is okay.

Ari

And they’re going to look very straight at him when they say that.

Ari (as Misha)

However, does your band always remain in this town to brighten the lives of these young humans?

Kyle (as Barney)

Oh no, we go all throughout Navarene. I mean, these are dark times, with the war between Charmonde and Qi brewing? Kids around this country need all the happy and joyful music they can get.

Ari (as Misha)

Well, uh, I have been practicing my own instrumental material.

Ari

And then they’re going to show the kazoo to Barney.

Ari (as Misha)

I suppose what I am trying to convey is that I want to do different things from my past, and I believe that I have an instrument that I can procure and be part of a band, therefore I was wondering if you had an extra space for your group of humans for me to participate in.

Kyle (as Barney)

Oh, a new band member? What do you play?

[50:09]

Ari

They are going to show the kazoo and say:

Ari (as Misha)

Well, you see, I was told that this instrument was rare, and that it was able to have magical properties on humans. I have started to believe that this may not be the case, but I am still skilled on it.

Kyle

He’s going to look at that and say:

Kyle (as Barney)

Oh, I think my nephew has one of those! Emmy, do you think we have space for another member?

Kyle

And Emmy just shakes her head and gives him a big thumbs down.

Kyle (as Barney)

Yeah, no, I think we absolutely have space, although we are going to have to have a little bit of an audition, heh heh. Do you have anything you can play on it?

Ari (as Misha)

Oh, certainly. I have—

Ari

And then they are going to think first of the two songs that they have played previously, and then they’re going to be like:

Ari (as Misha)

I actually have been practicing on a new song.

Kyle (as Barney, with baited breath)

Go ahead…

Ari (as Misha)

Okay…

[Misha plays their kazoo. Its music is startling and abrasive. It is also “Africa” by Toto.]

Ari

[Laughter.] That’s what they’re going to play, and they’re going to be like:

Ari (as Misha)

I have—I practiced that previously for somebody else, but I want to use it in my audition.

Emily

Oh noooo.

Kyle

So after that playing, there’s a little bit of a silence, and Barney turns over to Emmy, who is giving him this, like, shrugging her shoulders and with a big frown like, what the fuck, why are we still humoring this person? And he turns over to you and says:

Kyle (as Barney)

Yeah, you’re in!

[Piano music plays, then fades.]

Kyle

And with that, we are not ending the episode. Instead, we’re going to turn over back to Xoc.

Tom

Okay!

Kyle

Who, uh, has at the end of kind of his day…

Tom

Who is fine.

Kyle

And Xoc, you open the door to kind of the chambers you got, and Loell is rambling, and he’s saying things like:

Kyle (as Loell)

I’ve got to admit, as gross as the brain thing is—and it’s really gross—that is really neat. You’re going to have to teach me more about that some time.

Kyle

And suddenly, your face gets covered, and it feels as if someone is trying to smother you with a cloth-y pillow. And eventually the cloth goes down so you can see through your eyes. And you see that this purple scarf has wrapped itself around you and is holding this note in front of your face. And Ari, what does the note say:

Ari

Mm.

Tom

What the fuck?

Ari

Sorry, uh, the note says:

[Somber music begins.]

Ari (as Misha)

Here is the best part of me. I hope you remember me for that.

Tom

[Stunned breathing.]

Emily

Noo!

Hallie

What is this episode?

Tom

I want, for the record, for our viewers, to know that I was already, like, softly crying on mute when Misha played Africa, which was going to be our song. Oh.

Hallie

[Laughter.]

Ari

Look! Look, it’s still our song, okay?

Tom

Oh, it’s fine. Oh, it’s fine. Everything is fine.

Ari

I’m sorry, I panicked!

Tom

Oh, God, alright. Mm, compose myself. Uh, Xoc is going to immediately turn to run out the door and say to the scarf:

Tom (as Xoc)

Take me to them!

Ari

[Laughter.] To the scarf!

Kyle

Yeah, and the scarf kind of just pulls at your neck.

[Hopeful music begins.]

Tom

Xoc is running and cursing himself for wasting his Datasphere question now when he needs it most.

Kyle

And Misha, you’re packing all your stuff onto the back of the aneen, which the band uses to kind of carry their gear.

Emily

Misha, no!

Kyle

And as you’re about to get on, you can turn over and you see this scarf just fluttering as a 19-year-old boy just chases, trying to keep up with it, occasionally like tripping and having to hop to catch up.

Tom

Uh, Xoc is going to run up, shouting:

[Hopeful music fades.]

Tom (as Xoc)

Misha Jarvis!

Ari

They’re just going to turn and narrow their eyes and say:

Ari (as Misha)

Xo-Xoc?

Kyle (as Xoc)

Misha, what, I, what—are you leaving?

Ari (as Misha)

Xoc, I do apologize, as this is not something that has to do with you, or with Elee Buh, or with Simon Simon Simon Scotch at all. All of you are great companions. But I just—I have done things that could put all of you in danger, and I do not want to risk this happening. Therefore, I am trying to step away from it before it happens again.

[55:10]

Tom (as Xoc)

But we’re all in danger, all the time.

Ari (as Misha)

I am aware of it, but it’s different. It’s different being in danger from an external danger than being in danger because it’s a danger that we cause. And this is something that I can cause, and that I can generate danger to all of you, therefore it is better for me to step away because of that. You see, I remembered things while you almost went off to die, and I am afraid that I might be the one that causes it later.

Ari

And then they’re going to kind of look away a little bit.

Tom

Xoc hangs his head slightly at the mention of him going off to die, but then looks up with a new determination and says:

Tom (as Xoc)

We’ve all done terrible things. Well, ma-maybe not Hopper Scotch.

Ari

[Laughter.]

Tom (as Xoc)

But we’ve all done bad things. It’s okay. Please, you don’t have to worry about me! I can be safe. I trust you!

Ari (as Misha)

But you see I do not trust me, and being—playing things, being on this band is less dangerous than being around somebody that I care about, you see? Xoc, I—I removed someone’s life.

Ari

And their voice is kind of going to trail off as they say that, and they’re going to be like:

Ari (as Misha)

And I didn’t know that I was doing it. I may have even enjoyed it. I am not entirely sure. My recollections are still not as great, but—

Tom (as Xoc)

We can work through it. I’m not afraid. If you did something while you weren’t you, we can find a way to protect against that.

Ari (as Misha)

It could have been Elle Buh, but if it was her, what if it was Scotch? What if it was…you?

Tom

Xoc is going to pause for a moment, considering that, and then just sort of—can I retcon something briefly? Can I say that up until now, this has been happening mentally, this conversation?

Ari

Mm, yeah! No, definitely. That’s what I thought, too. [Laughter.]

Tom

Okay. Okay.

Ari

I wouldn’t have said just like, in the middle of the street, no.

Tom

Then Xoc shouts out loud:

Tom (as Xoc, shouting)

I don’t care! I don’t want to be alone again!

[Somber, electronic music begins.]

Tom (as Xoc)

It happened before. I—people have hurt me before, but it’s okay. I trust you. I can’t go back to the way things were. Please, please don’t go. We’ll fix it, somehow. Well, okay, maybe we won’t fix it, but we’ll find a way to make it through it.

Ari

Misha’s going to stare at Xoc for a really, really long moment, and then they are just going to hug, to go into a hug.

Tom

Xoc returns the fuck out of that hug.

Emily

[Laughter.]

[Somber music fades.]

Kyle

And so you have that hug, and you tell Barney that you’re not going to be part of his band anymore. He’s used to it by this point, honestly. Then you walk back to your cabin, and back in your cabin you see Hopper Scotch nursing a surprisingly hefty amount of bruises on his shoulders, while Elee sits in the corner humming to herself and looking at a random piece of memorabilia that she had pulled from her hat.

[Closing theme begins.]

Kyle

And you look around at your friends, at the people you’ve gone through a lot with, and you’re going to go through a hell of a lot more with. And after awhile, you all slowly one by one head to sleep, rested and ready for your next adventure.

[Closing theme intensifies, then fades.]

Kyle

Quest Friends Theater Presents:

[Trumpet fanfare blares out.]

Kyle

Don’t Be Like Dunshire, a Children’s Poem. Written and performed by Lorraine Stiles.

[Whimsical music begins.]

Kyle (as Lorraine Stiles)

Deep in the Steadfast lies a town made of glass,

With a people so fragile they deserve a hard pass.

Sure it looks nice and shiny, with cute girls and cute boys,

Who stand straight to attention with adorable poise.

But it’s all a façade, a most terrible ruse.

No, don’t be like Dunshire, if you’re able to choose.

Don’t be like Dunshire and tell secrets and lies,

And hide your hard feelings behind fake, plastic smiles.

Don’t be like Dunshire and waste all your time

On silly sideshows that don’t earn a dime.

Don’t be like Dunshire and hide all alone

As if the whole world were some deadly death zone.

No, don’t be like Dunshire. Don’t be like Dumpshire.

Don’t be like Dunshire. It deserves utmost ire.

Now that being said, it isn’t all bad:

Even Dunshire has some joys to be had.

And like a sweet bunny rabbit, but 10 times more smart,

He’ll hop, hop, hop, hop, his way into your heart.

But oh, no, oh woe! One day he’ll fail too,

And leave you all bored with nothing to do.

But don’t be like Dunshire, give him a fresh chance

To pull up those bootstraps and join one last dance.

He might not deserve it, you might want to stray,

But you’re his best friend and you can’t go away.

So instead let him know though not where or when

No fear, Hopper Scotch, I’ll see you again.

Kyle

Quest Friends Chapter Three: Questionable Measures, will be premiering on Monday, July 9. You can subscribe for updates on future episodes at questfriendspodcast.com, or under Quest Friends on your favorite podcasting app. Be sure to sign up so you can receive the latest episodes as soon as they are released. After all, you don’t want to keep her waiting.

[Episode ends - 1:01:55.]

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Numenera and its logo are trademarks of Monte Cook Games, LLC in the U.S.A. and other countries. All Monte Cook Games characters and character names, and the distinctive likenesses thereof, are trademarks of Monte Cook Games, LLC. Content derived from Monte Cook Games publications is © 2013-2017 Monte Cook Games, LLC. Read the full disclaimer here.​

Intro/Outro music by MiracleOfSound

Intro: "Friends" (YouTube, Bandcamp)

Outro: "Hitoshio" (YouTube, Bandcamp)