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Old May 13, 2019, 09:12 PM   #16
Moss Oktra'rek
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Moss' attention was too focused on Demetria and the silks above to notice that the two fire dancers had followed his instructions to ready a table on the stage. Instead, he was hauling himself up the silk as the performer clung to it, and his arms were burning from the effort.

And then, just to complicate things, the fabric began to feel the effects of their combined weight.

He was, after all, a former soldier, both taller and heavier than the lithe performer who made a living from hanging from the material. Their time had always been limited by Moss' endurance and Demetria's pain threshold; it was only fair that the silk, too, would only be willing to put up a fight for so long.

"Feth!"

There was no time to discuss what was happening. He simply had to react. A little less conversation; a little more action.

Moving almost on instinct alone, Moss reached out for the other silk and, grabbing hold of it, transferred his weight across. With Demetria clinging to the first silk, but her ankle tangled in the other, he couldn't afford to have it tear and let her fall headfirst. And so he worked quickly, clambering around the woman's leg until his grip was above her ankle. Quickly twisting the silk around his wrist to give him a better chance of not falling himself, he used the other hand to grab hold of the dagger that sat at his waist.

"Brace yourself," he called out to the Secyclionian, and then to whoever might be below: "Get ready to catch her!"

Then, gritting his teeth, he brought the dagger's blade to the silk, below his grip but above Demetria's ankle, and he sawed furiously at it until it gave way. He hoped that the momentum and weight shift would not cause the performer to fall, and that she could climb down herself, but at least she wouldn't be upside down if the material tore.

And then he'd have to figure out a way to get down without doing some serious damage to himself.
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Old May 16, 2019, 10:26 AM   #17
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Demetria did her best to adjust her hold as Moss changed his grasp to the opposite silk. She looked up at where the fabric was tied to a rafter beam, and where - just at the edge of a wooden corner - it had begun, ever so slightly, to fray. Gritting her teeth against the pain in her strained back, she hoisted herself up just a little more to brace herself for what was to come.

Silk was a tough fabric, but even it couldn't stand up to a sharp blade. It took only a few seconds for Moss's dagger to work its way through the spot above where Demetria's leg was tangled. Several things happened in quick succession:

One tangled silk was cut away, and Demetria's tangled leg and lower body dropped from its elevated trap.

The shift of weight proved too much for the other silk, which gave another wrenching sound from above, swinging wildly and finally gave way.

Demetria swung back like a pendulum with the damaged silk before it tore and she plummeted downwards, the two beautiful silvery sheets billowing out above her - one still tied around her ankle, the other from her grasping hands. The swinging motion meant that she was headed for the ground not where Jiang and Thao stood with the table, but for the back of the stage where the diminuitive ringmaster stood gaping and totally unprepared for this turn of events.

The blue-eyed half elf muttered something like, "Oh, right. Thaumaturgy." Something like a wave of static emanated from her lithe, tensed form before she leapt several feet in the air, Empowered, from her vantage point, and before the audience could do more than a sharp intake of breath, she was touching back down to the wooden floor with Demetria held neatly in her arms. If anyone blinked, they might have missed it.

A confused mass of the other performers descended upon them, helping to lay the injured performer down and fold one of the soft silks under her head for cushioning, as Healing Light flowed from Bladewyn's hands to her twisted back and leg.

Now the rest of the performers were staring back up at Moss, who was dangling from a couple of inches of a single silk rope. Jiang still stood directly beneath him, staring up. "I have an idea," he said, and muttered to Thao.

The other Katta pulled a few of the sturdier-looking audience members from their seats to stand around the table, holding it steady. Then, using his brother's cupped paws as a step, Thao was boosted upward and stepped onto Jiang's shoulders. Katta standing upon Katta standing upon the table, they made up all but a few feet of the distance between Thao's own shoulders and Moss's heels.

"What do you think, my friend?" Thao asked, reaching up both strong, furry arms to Moss. His outreached paws would just brush the bottom of Moss's boots. "Shall we give it a try?"
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Old May 18, 2019, 09:11 AM   #18
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Only a handful of rushed and panicked moments after settling down for a tankard of ale, Moss was hanging from a silken thread as the rafters of the tavern staring down at him, daring him to let go. The brightening had been spent on repairing his small hovel - he had not been restful before crossing the threshold of the establishment.

And, as Demetria's form swung - then slipped - beneath him and he was left clinging to what little was left of the material, a terrifyingly short pair of inches the only leeway between him hanging on and tumbling towards a painful fall, his arms, shoulders, and back reminded him of the work he'd put them through for several of the previous candlemarks.

In the instants that followed, after the Secyclionian had made a more graceful descent than anyone might have predicted, Moss had a flashback. Or, rather, a flashback of a flashback. The smell of his own fear filled his nostrils as he remembered that fall...

It was Thao's words that brought his attention back, and he only then realised he had closed his eyes, for they stung with sweat, but he forced himself to look down at the katta. His answer came, not in the form of a nod or a spoken word, but by an act of faith, as he held his breath and let go, the tiny distance between his boots and the acrobat's strong grip seeming like a mile, his legs braced to bend and his body crouch for balance the instant they made contact with something solid.

He just hoped it was the katta's hands and not the stage far below.
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Old May 27, 2019, 06:26 PM   #19
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"Sometimes it's easier if you don't look down," Thao offered, his own voice strained as he kept his balance atop his brother's shoulders. It was easier said than done, for Moss wanted to make sure he was pretty well aligned with the closest solid item before letting go of the silks, right?

3... 2... 1... and...

Thao bent his elbows and took in a quick breath to brace himself as Moss let himself fall those few perilous inches. The paws katta's hands were huge and soft, and landing on them felt sort of like hopping onto a patch of wet earth. Earth that was swaying back and forth a bit as both brothers below him struggled to maintain their balance with his additional weight.

From between gritted teeth, Thao puffed: "Now, my friend... I will lower you... and you can step onto my shoulders." Not delaying any longer than was necessary, he would bend his elbows, lowering Moss incrementally until his upturned palms bearing Moss' feet were just about level with his shoulders. The katta was very sturdily built, but his limbs trembled violently with the effort of holding Moss aloft.

Two more steps closer to freedom. He had better hop to it!
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Old May 29, 2019, 06:58 AM   #20
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Moss' legs wobbled slightly when they first stepped onto Thao's paws, but he quickly followed the katta's advice and looked ahead, rather than down. As tempting as it was to peer at the hard wooden surface of the stage, he realised that doing so would make their impromptu human katta ladder even more top-heavy than it already was with him at its summit, and the last thing he needed was a face full of splinters. His arms instinctively rose outwards in an attempt to steady himself, and by the time he was brought teasingly close to Thao's shoulders, he had managed to gain some semblance of balance.

Beneath him, he could sense Thao straining, and as the katta began to strain, Moss tugged on arcane threads, feeling a portion of vis leaving him as he wove them around the performer's arms as he sought to Strengthen his efforts.

Moss forced himself to block out everything else that was going on around him: the sweat tickling its way down his back; the sounds of an awed and terrified audience; every little unstable shift of the Thao's paws.

Then, just as tentatively as before, he made the next step, onto the katta's shoulders. There was less space for his boots than the creature's paws, but - he hoped - it would make him a much more manageable weight to bear.
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Old June 9, 2019, 08:06 PM   #21
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The Strengthening spell lent Thao some power as he supported Moss's weight on the upturned paws of his hands, and then his shoulders. The katta released a deep breath as the man's weight shifted successfully.

"So, my friend," said Thao, still managing to sound cheerful under the strain, "You can clamber down my shoulders and waist, and then Jiang's. Or you can display your hidden knowledge of Zinn'Sunnese acrobatic technique and do a spinning tuck jump from on high." He chuckled at his own joke.

"Just, decide soon, please," Jiang grunted from further down.

What was it to be?

oocsorry bout the delay!
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Old June 10, 2019, 05:05 PM   #22
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Moss was, for all intents and purposes, not far from teetering at a height of one table and two kattas, but he still managed a rather nervous snort at Thao's jest. It was clear that no amount of spellcasting could keep him aloft indefinitely, and the pair were presumably used to carrying each other, but the human was a surplus load.

He said nothing, but responded by carefully bending his legs, arms still outstretched until he had lowered his body enough that he could reach down and touch Thao's shoulders with the tips of fingers that still felt the burn of silk. Cautiously, he transferred his weight from boot to hand, allowing his foot to lower further, seeking purchase on the katta's hip, and then repeating the process on the other side.

As he moved, Moss looked down at the audience members who were holding the table steady, grateful that they were becoming closer by every painfully slow moment.

He blinked his eyes to fight off the sweat, and shook his head to cause a few droplets to flee his person, but not pausing his descent, his boots seeking out Jiang's shoulders - for it was clear that the katta would only be able to hold onto him and Thao for a short time longer.
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Old July 12, 2019, 08:58 PM   #23
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Thao reigned in his jokes as Moss focused on climbing down his back. The katta's muscled hips provided a stable resting place for the human's booted feet.

Jiang grunted but bore the impact of a second pair of feet as gracefully as he could. Above him, Thao held himself as still as he could to allow Moss to use his legs for balance if he needed. The blue-clad katta was shaking slightly with the combined effort of keeping balanced on his brother's shoulders as well as staying upright so that Moss could clamber down his hip, but he breathed deeply to maintain his position.

"Nearly there, my lad," said one of the volunteers around the edge of the table. "Steady now."

All that was left to do was find purchase on Jiang's shoulders, then scramble or jump down one more katta-length to the table and then the ground.
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Old July 13, 2019, 05:21 AM   #24
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Moss was silently grateful for Thao's decision to keep humour to a minimum. The last thing he needed was to be distracted and lose his balance. If he was to tumble, there was every chance that he would take both kattas down with him.

The human was grateful to find the shoulders of Jiang, and he kept moving, knowing instinctively that to pause would probably be his literal downfall. Indeed, maintaining his momentum intuitively seemed the best course of action.

And so he continued, climbing down the katta brothers as if they were a ladder, his feet seeking out Jiang's shoulders and hips as his hands clung to Thao's leggings and ankles.

Assuming he was able to reach the lower acrobat's hips, he would then jump down to the table - not by pushing away with his feet, lest he topple Jiang and his brother over, but simply by stepping back, letting go, and allowing gravity to take care of the rest.

If he was to successfully land on the table, he would plant his feet for balance and hold onto Jiang to help stabilise him, before reaching up to help guide Thao down, just in case the higher katta needed it.
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Old September 11, 2019, 05:23 AM   #25
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Ladders made of people were hardly regulation. They were soft, some of the handle holds were slippers and they didn't remain still despite the best of discipline one had.

The table itself was also bearing the weight of this ladder and there came a most disconcerting crack and a wobble followed by a crunch. A table leg had buckled. The Katta had moved quickly in a display of shrewed thinking but this greatly shifted the balance. As Moss held on he could feel the ladder slip beneath his arms threatening to throw him from a height in 'uncontrolled' descent with the very real probability of landing wrong on the ground or atop a flailing Latta whose claws may catch his flesh.

Moss had only a split second to think about what to do as he balanced precariously on That's hips as the ladder began to topple and the table threatened to break further. Moss needed quickly to think about how best to land and whether he could leverage anything nearby to assist in this effect.

The table beneath him was broken and unstable but it would mean falling from less height than to land on the stage itself. The crowd had gathered close to where the action was with the spectacle drawing them near despite calls for them to keep their distance. They were close enough to not be out of harm's way from falling or leaping folk from above. The volunteers were closer and in more danger still. The gasps of the crowd with the crunch made their presence keenly known to Moss as he dangled from an unbalanced cat. Thai and Jiang were in no position to offer advice as they fought a losing battle of balance against gravity.

Above Moss's head and to the side was the silk rope he had dangled from previously. That would return Moss to the previous predicament hanging from a height.

Then again Thao's joked suggestion regarding the spinning tuck jump remained an option....
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Old September 13, 2019, 03:00 PM   #26
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Every muscle in Moss' body tensed as soon as he heard the crack of the table below.

That wasn't to say he had been relaxed prior to that, of course, for the risk of falling was ever present, but there had been a sense that they were past the worst of the descent. But the buckling of the table leg proved otherwise, and the human only had an instant to react.

It was clear that he had to leave the ladder of people, and quickly. He was probably the heaviest person upon it - and certainly heavier than either Jiang or Thao - so the best chance of avoiding a pile of broken bodies was for him to remove his own weight.

Even as his mind rushed for a solution, he was already drawing on the arcane threads that he hoped might aid his descent. They were wrapping around his mind as he reached out for the silk, knowing the material wouldn't hold him forever, but his grip was not too tight; he sought to slide down rather than cling desperately to it.

Even so, he doubted the silk would hold for long, but he was hopeful that it might enable him to control his descent long enough for his Balance spell to take hold, so that he might be able to land safely on the stage below.
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Old Today, 05:04 AM   #27
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Did Moss have enough time to benefit from an attempt to mentally bolster the mind's efforts at balance? Simply put: no. It was neither the most ideal situation for spellcasting nor a situation allowing the time to master the weave. Perhaps it might help afterwards?

With enough strength to grip the silk he let it slip as he released his hold from the two Katta. Having released.himself the two Katta were able to apply their own natural feline grace to fall from the table without breaking any bones. Any adages about cats always landing on their feet was proven wrong as they sprawled over the stage as the table itself toppled over with two of its legs now broken.

Though Moss could not rely upon the spell alone, whether it was working or not, to solve the issue he now dangled from the end of the silk rope with a similar problem as presented itself on the table. The material was fraying and would give way eventually. Apparently the silk was old and though the original acrobat's weight was sustainable on this silk the weight of the amnesiac was enough to pull into question the suitability of the silk rope to the job at hand.

Dangling from the silk Moss noted that he had again more options. A direct drop below was possible but at the least it would jar his legs. The rope itself though precarious felt as though it had a little bit of durability left. Nearby there was a trampoline set at the back of the stage which had escaped anyone's attention. It would have been perfect moments before yet apparently among the entertainers quick thinking was a little lacking. Still it was close... Perhaps close enough?

Aside from this there was always the crowd. Flesh was softer than hard flooring.
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