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Behind the Deceit

One does not simply release Drocilla.

After she’s been expected/predicted by the players to arrive in the midst of some huge event, we couldn’t just have her waltz in casually. So when we (Havens: The Next Generation) all ended up reaching Godhood so closely together and decided to do a multi-release, the plan for Drocilla’s return began to take shape. From the beginning, we knew she’d have to be disguised because Jadice and Lisaera would sooner make out with a Soulless than let Drocilla through. Our initial plan was actually for her to be a divine without obvious org associations so no one’s hopes and dreams would be crushed when she gets revealed. But we knew Carakhan would be releasing later in an aetherbubble because her group never made it into the Void, and that’s when Estarra got that glint in the eye that says she has an Idea(tm). Drocilla would be Fake Carakhan! Or as we liked to call her – Droco Khan or Khal Droco.

My major worry with that plan was Celest feeling fooled by the event – “Again!” as they like to remind us. So I set to sketching it out in a way where everyone’s a winner and Celest would have the opportunity to not be so blindly tricked. Sure, the Drocilla of legends would charm everyone and call it a day, but where’s the fun in that? For the same reason we left her collared, but that’s a story for another post. As for the plan, I came up with valid reasons for Drocilla to want to go to Celest, chief among them being this simple truth: Which Traitor would pass on the opportunity to have that blasted Meridian’s shards cater to their every whim? Further, I narrowed down possible conversation points which might lead her towards a falling out with Celest. And finally, I planned for a few ways in which she would betray herself a little – for example, she would tell mortals that she’s not a Keeper of the Song, but she would hum and sing to perform some of her magic because Drocilla actually is one. The rest was going to be organic.

Cue the Red Wedding of Lusternia. Or at the least, we shamelessly had hoped you’d all have your jaws on the floor in a similar fashion when four gods would come crashing in at once. Especially since some of them were player dreams come true! The event went fabulously, even if Lisaera was sweating moonbeads out of her fine forehead the whole time. Crumkane was all serious buisness, too, while Jadice and I were in a call and laughed ourselves silly at players illusioning the fulcrux cracks talking. And then Crumkane waltzed out of the portal smelling like an incense stick and everyone screeched “DROCILLA!”. Darn it guys, that was NOT intended! Crumkane just smells like that and Droco Khan’s portal attack was a perfectly innocent globe of water. Ah well, going to have to step it up!

Celest, you have been absolutely wonderful. So much that, for a moment there, I considered stealing Carakhan and running off with her. The sheer joy and level of roleplay you brought to the table bespoke of your desire for an active divine among your pantheon and I was thrilled that you would be getting just that. When Morgfyre posed as Hajamin, Celest was left with nothing, but in this case, you were actually getting a real Carakhan. And a better one mind you, a freakin’ mermaid with a trident as opposed to a smiley – and a little vain – Fake Carakhan. Being her was quite the challenge in any case because you all threw me curveballs on a daily basis, questions and requests I didn’t see coming. And on the spot, I had to decide what Drocilla thought about it, what Drocilla thought Carakhan would have thought about it, and then say it in a way that could have two meanings. If you look back at the logs posted with Fake Cara interactions, you’ll see some of that hopefully!

Coming back to Celest, I had the best of times. Aquamancer lingerie, people being doorways, chessboards in baths, the neverending string of fountains, and the adorable little fishpond (sorry for killing them!) all made my day. The journey into tempting you from the Light has been excellent and kudos to all of you who were shaken and then stood up for your beliefs. It was a bit hard, I know, because you are polite and kind, and didn’t straight up want to tell your goddess that she can go roll around in the taint herself if she so chooses. Thank you Kelly, for storming in and being all, “Not on my watch, missy!”. And thus did Celest reject the temptation and then storm away to release their mermaid.

And finally we come to the actual reveal and Drocilla’s attack on Celest. How do we show how dangerous she is in spite of the collar without straight out decimating everyone? People dying over and over would have been effective but certainly not enjoyable, especially not for confused novices, so we adjusted the damage of the song accordingly. Certainly wanted everyone to be able to see the showdown, too, so we moved the scene to Celest but still left a few special messages for them alone. Someone did die (I’m a bad person… but I cheered a little), Magnagorans stood transfixed and then got down at the Megalith like it’s Taint’s Second Coming, and Carakhan saved Celest with a fancy water bubble.

Success!

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