Comic 192 - Suggest a cure

28th Jul 2018, 3:40 PM in High Roads, Low Roads, Threeroads
Average Rating: 5 (2 votes) Rate this comic
Suggest a cure
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Author Notes:

Morgenstern 28th Jul 2018, 3:40 PM edit delete
You tell the pirates that you're probably going to head farther in. You don't make any promises about the serpent, though you're normally uh...

pretty good at handling snakes, you say as suggestively as possible.

Any tips would be appreciated, though.

"Snake is big," mutters Sheila.

"Aye, fuckin' massive it is," agrees Mangobeard.

Is... that it? No status effects? No lightning breath? No telekinesis or anything?

"If it's got any o' that," Hemingway replies, "we din't bloody well get a chance to see it."

Mangobeard nods. "Aye, shook the cave it did. I ain't th' smartest cap'n alive, but I know when it be time to take me leave. Not even sure how it got in here, truth bein' told."

"Swam up from beneath, in all likelihood," Hemingway suggests. "Prob'ly stuck now. S'a lot faster than you'd think, for its size."

You give them a bottle of rum for the trouble, and mention a story you heard--that the kiss of a lovely maiden can maybe cure someone of being frogged.

You waggle your eyebrows, subtly, at Sheila.

"Well," Mangobeard shrugs, "I don't be thinkin' we know any lovely maidens per se--"

Hemingway gives a restrained chuckle, and Sheila gives them both a look. "Want me to try?," she asks them, before quickly adding "Or not?"

"May as well," Hemingway responds. "Sounds a bit like an old wives' tale, though."

Sheila picks up the frog, and gives it a kiss before setting it back down.

There's a long pause. Mangobeard is JUST about to say something when--

there's a puff of smoke

and as it clears, what remains is not a frog at all, but...

a monkey.


You begin to voice your confusion about why Bexley is a monkey.

Hemingway smirks. "Because 'is parents were monkeys, if I had to guess."

"Yarr, that just be what he be," Mangobeard confirms. "Bexley's Hemingway's familiar." The captain uncorks the rum and takes a swig before adding, "Scrappy little bastard in 'is own right, though."


Crazy Eights 28th Jul 2018, 4:18 PM edit delete reply
Monkey was unexpected.
MakePeaceAndLove 29th Jul 2018, 1:19 AM edit delete reply
Agreed, although a familiar explains why they're traveling in a group of 3+1. It all makes sense again.
YetiOlwen 29th Jul 2018, 5:25 AM edit delete reply
I feel much better about these pirates as they follow the goddess will after all. Things were getting pretty weird for a moment there... Now our party of some sentient royal ooze, a goblin driven mech crab, and the apparently identical twin of a world infamous panty thief can get down to the business of fighting a giant monster inside a tiny cave.

A normal day, Just as the gods intended.
Crazy Eights 28th Jul 2018, 4:22 PM edit delete reply
Maybe we can obtain a shrinking potion through ingredients or a shop and make the figt easier? Maybe see if emmy can sneak close enough to the snake and maybe determine if we should pull back for now. As stated before, having no real healer could really hurt us.
Devus 28th Jul 2018, 5:42 PM edit delete reply
We already have a shrinking potion.
GuyIncognito 28th Jul 2018, 7:39 PM edit delete reply
Don't you dare use that shrinking potion. It's for us to go seduce a fairy.
ZincFingers 28th Jul 2018, 9:47 PM edit delete reply
Maybe we can get another shrinking potion from somewhere? Save the one we have for the fairies.

Speaking of potions saved for a purpose: we still have the stamina potion we purchased to use with Valley.
MakePeaceAndLove 29th Jul 2018, 1:19 AM edit delete reply
-1 to using the shrinking potion. I actually think we can defeat that serpent without it.
GS 28th Jul 2018, 4:38 PM edit delete reply
Aak what kind of caster Hemingway is.

And apologize to Sheila.
ZincFingers 29th Jul 2018, 6:04 AM edit delete reply
A thought on Sheila.
Emerald cured Inzo, she is also a king.
Sheila cured Bexley, is it possible she is royalty of some sort?
Professor Cupcake 29th Jul 2018, 8:59 PM edit delete reply
Professor Cupcake
At this point, I'm not about to assume anything like that. For all we know, they turn back when anybody kisses them.
G. Sansa 28th Jul 2018, 4:42 PM edit delete reply
Oh, I'm a mage too — what's your specialty?

Also, I'm wondering how we get the crab in to where the serpent is. I mean, it could come in via water, but not unless we know it's not going to get caught unexpectedly by the serpent. Or try to get in the same way we do, but looks too tight a fit. Anybody have any ideas? We are not going to try to face this monster with just two party members, especially since Emmy's best attack is already known not to work on huge opponents.

Basically, one way or the other, I think we're gonna have to send Emmy ahead to scout. Which means it's time to introduce the party to the pirates.
YetiOlwen 28th Jul 2018, 4:45 PM edit delete reply
Don't think that the serpent is coming next. After all "an' monsters show up around our secret stash" so I suspect that we have another room of encounters before the snake. Unless dirty pants and extra weapons are the stash
ZincFingers 28th Jul 2018, 9:50 PM edit delete reply
Good spot that, there probably are some more rooms to go before the serpent fight... unless the serpent comes to us.
YetiOlwen 29th Jul 2018, 5:33 AM edit delete reply
I mean realistically if there was a monstrously sized monster thrashing around causing all sorts of noise and property damage would you just walk one room over and go "Arr now we be safe from the beast"
ZincFingers 29th Jul 2018, 6:07 AM edit delete reply
Yeah, that makes sense.
Unless the door between this room and the next is a loading zone, but so far I don’t think the cave has been big enough to justify one this early on.
Professor Cupcake 29th Jul 2018, 9:01 PM edit delete reply
Professor Cupcake
I suspect that "secret stash" is more just a subtle attempt at appealing to our greed.

... it also occurs to me it could be a secret 'stache, instead. :P
Guest 28th Jul 2018, 5:03 PM edit delete reply
Might be a bit of a waste but we could give the crown to the Bexley to make a monking and he could help fight the serpent. We could maybe try and strike a deal with them to work for us first as it's a pretty rare item. A mage with a monking familiar would be a pretty good ally.
YetiOlwen 28th Jul 2018, 5:14 PM edit delete reply
I like the idea, but we should only consider it if he joins us permanently. We could invite them to join, but I doubt they would right now. I do like the idea suggested last page of offering to have at least one of them temporarily join us for the fight if they wish.
RicardtheDragoon 28th Jul 2018, 6:55 PM edit delete reply
That's an application that hasn't been considered yet, but it's probably better to apply to Lagrand's future Mandragora familiar. At least, that's what I'm hoping Morgenstern is foreshadowing. Even if the Mandragora doesn't get the crown, it will likely be a familiar for Lagrand regardless.
GS 28th Jul 2018, 5:17 PM edit delete reply
I'm not really keen on giving a bunch of sea-faring brigands access to their own Monking... 0_0
Some Random Guy 28th Jul 2018, 9:06 PM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
At least the Crown only works once, so if they steal it, they can only utilize it in a time of need or right away.
Winged Crusade 28th Jul 2018, 10:42 PM edit delete reply
Winged Crusade
I thought it was a /permanent/ one time use thing?
HereToHelp 28th Jul 2018, 11:38 PM edit delete reply
If we're gonna give them something to help us fight the snake I'd rather it be grandpas anchor. Those with nautical themes automatically know how to use it and Sheila should be able to hold it. That'd give us a nice boost.
MakePeaceAndLove 29th Jul 2018, 1:21 AM edit delete reply
-1 to giving them the moking crown, at least until we've confirmed they're trustworthy. Even then, a Monking could cease to be a proper familiar, becoming uncontrollable when his personality changes, so I'd be careful there.

On the other hand, I'm in favor of letting Sheila borrow Grandpa's Anchor if she wants it for the upcoming fight.
Benjerbro 28th Jul 2018, 5:38 PM edit delete reply
D'aw shoot it didn't work! Kiss it again Shiela!
Thoth 28th Jul 2018, 5:44 PM edit delete reply
I was pretty sure we got a shrinking potion from the giant caterpillar. could reduce the overall size of the problem. although I had been hoping that Nast would use the potion for more inspirational Pursuits.
the Fairies for example
Devus 28th Jul 2018, 5:45 PM edit delete reply
Inquire as to how one forms a bond with a familiar, and if Bexley is from the Witch's Woods.

If so, make a note to go tame a monkey later.
1977 28th Jul 2018, 6:12 PM edit delete reply
I agree with asking how to get a familiar.

But why a monkey? There are enough other possible familiars out there.

We can try to make the Sea Snake our familiar for example.
YetiOlwen 28th Jul 2018, 6:24 PM edit delete reply
My thoughts exactly, if we had more to offer the giant spider that could have been a good familiar. Albeit the more monster like our familiar is, the less likely we can bring it into towns with us.
RicardtheDragoon 28th Jul 2018, 6:53 PM edit delete reply
I wonder if the Chickepedia says anything about Cockadoo familiars and the raising thereof.
Some Random Guy 28th Jul 2018, 8:59 PM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Perhaps the monkey has some sort of special ability, or is just very nimble.
Devus 28th Jul 2018, 11:29 PM edit delete reply
This, but more importantly, imagine how much further we could push Je Nais Se Qoui with a monkey backing us up.

No one can dislike Monkey Trainer Guy, and it's an instant ice breaker.

Also if we get locked up again it could deftly steal a key and save us, as all monkey companions can.
MakePeaceAndLove 29th Jul 2018, 1:22 AM edit delete reply
We should ask about bonding/familiars, sure, and maybe the different pros and cons of each one, or at least the main/most popular ones. Then we can decide later if we'll get one too.
Some Random Guy 28th Jul 2018, 7:59 PM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Should we bring the rest of the squad into the room, as there is not much point for them to not be within the room anymore?
G. Sansa 28th Jul 2018, 8:51 PM edit delete reply
And it will tell us if the mech fits through the door.
Krylo 28th Jul 2018, 9:29 PM edit delete reply
Lets bring the rest of the team in, and then see if any of the pirates want to accompany us as we search the rest of their base and potentially do battle with a sea serpent.
MakePeaceAndLove 29th Jul 2018, 1:22 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy 29th Jul 2018, 10:14 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Indeed. +1
YetiOlwen 28th Jul 2018, 10:37 PM edit delete reply
From comic 145
There exist coliseums that pay well for these crowns, as it can turn a meager salamander into a ferocious dragon-

Guys we need get a salamander as a familiar.
Some Random Guy 29th Jul 2018, 10:15 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
If this is possible for our party members, we must first find out how to get a familiar.
Antarean 28th Jul 2018, 10:55 PM edit delete reply
+1 on asking about the pirates' abilities.

Also, if we're trying to become friends with the pirates and all the crates in here are their things, then that sorta interferes with our "loot everything that isn't nailed down" approach. Ask them if they'd have anything in the cave that might help fight the snake. We could reply with, "Really, nothing?" or "Anything else?" depending on how they respond, which should make them consider the rest of their inventory here, which they *might* tell us about, and they may or may not offer some of it as a reward. We don't want to look like we're fishing for loot or a reward though.

Also ask if they're particularly attached to the cave, or at least the chamber the snake is in, since the easiest thing to do might end up collapsing the cave on top of it. (I'm thinking if we're lucky enough to catch the thing sleeping, we could use deinforce+ on the cave walls which would be a lot quieter than Inzo's bubble explosions so we might be able to do significantly more damage without waking it up).

Lastly, even if the pirates didn't notice any special abilities, a snake of that size does suggest a basilisk. We've already fought one monster in this cave that had a gaze attack. We should plan accordingly, such as reading any books we happen to have about basilisks or other large, snake monsters, and/or asking our party members or even the pirates what they know or what they've heard about them. It would be good to know beforehand how basilisks work in this world (or if they even exist): Does their gaze cause petrification, or instant death? Is it poisonous? Is it vulnerable to mirrors? etc. Inzo might be able to obscure the dome of the goblobser and give himself some protection, if that would work, the others might need special sunglasses or pocket mirrors or something.
Some Random Guy 29th Jul 2018, 10:16 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
If and when we are working together to beat the snake, lets make sure that we know how the pirates can help. +1
YetiOlwen 28th Jul 2018, 10:59 PM edit delete reply
One thing to consider, the serpent is trapped in the cave due to the cave in and it didn't actually attack the pirates in anyway. It might just want to get out and could be quite peaceful. If it is aggressive it might just be scared.

I suggest going back to town to buy a language potion and see if we can talk to it.

We could offer to use the shrink potion And carry it out if we think it would shrink enough.
Jangu the Sticky 28th Jul 2018, 11:17 PM edit delete reply
No lote entry for pirate clothes?
MakePeaceAndLove 29th Jul 2018, 1:31 AM edit delete reply
Good catch, I was also waiting on those.
Guest 29th Jul 2018, 5:24 AM edit delete reply
Since we’re borrowing some pirate clothes, offer to let Sheila wear the bunny suit if she comes to help us out with the snake
Guest 29th Jul 2018, 5:24 AM edit delete reply
Not permanently, of course
YetiOlwen 29th Jul 2018, 5:45 AM edit delete reply
G. Sansa 29th Jul 2018, 9:32 AM edit delete reply
What do we know about Sheila?

1. She's a pirate.
2. Mangobeard called her a "tall glass of water". Could be gallant, but see 3.
3. Mangobeard implied she wasn't lovely. And Hemingway laughed. Assholes.
4. She was verbally hesitant about kissing Bexley, but then did it without any signs of disgust.

So, we don't know much about what makes her tick, but the vibe I'm getting is the insecure hanger-on, like some character from "Mean Girls" or something. Which, if that's who she is, is definitely a damsel in distress and worthy of some adventuring attention. But she could also be a boring nobody, just pirating along without much inner life. I don't want to read too much on one line of dialogue from her.

So basically, keep up the general corny Nast-style flirting, but unless we get more insight into her, I'd be happy to leave her as just one more NPC for now. At this point, bunny suit offers could be seen as just more bullying and I do NOT want to be part of that.
JiggilyJoe 29th Jul 2018, 11:32 AM edit delete reply
I think Sheila definitely needs some confidence building. If we offer her to wear the bunny costume, we need to point out the point that only "a Beautiful maiden" is able to turn someone back from a frog.
That being said, I don't know that we want her to eventually join our party, but having her as an acquaintance would be beneficial.
Some Random Guy 29th Jul 2018, 10:19 AM edit delete reply
Some Random Guy
Fortunately, we have a variety of potions, but we should plan this out. What if the thing is poisonous?
Korsha 29th Jul 2018, 9:07 PM edit delete reply
We ask Sheila to suck out the poison ;)