Blue Lacuna — 476 of 498

Aaron A. Reed

Release 4

Section - Coda

[some object used only for metaphorical purposes. Spider or something. A few moves to interact with it, various choices (destroy, help, etc.) before boar appears.]

Epilogue-Ending-C is a scene. Epilogue-Ending-C begins when epln_outtro2 is spoken.

When Epilogue-Ending-C begins:

say "You snap your eyes open to bleary dawn light.";

begin chapter 11;

change the time of day to 6:30 AM;

change the time factor to 1;

move yourself to Forest4;

now yourself holds e-spear;

eec-boararrives in 2 turns from now;

change the description of boar to "You have never seen these great red-brown creatures except alone, have never seen mates or children. It takes much of patience and a good deal of luck to see them at all. Rooting quietly in the mud at the roots of a tree, the boar is oblivious now to your presence. Your attack must be quick and firm if you hope to kill it.";

say "You must have dozed off. You crept here to this spot in the black of too-early morning, where you've seen boars foraging in early dawn mist. The [o]spear[x] you've carefully crafted over the past week is held tight in your hands, and all the paints are mixed. Like Lethe and Phoebe before you, all you need now is a hide for canvas.".

At the time when eec-boararrives: move boar to location; say "Suddenly you spot movement from the corner of your eye and see the creature, a lumbering [o]boar[x], fat and sleepy. Perfect. You grip the spear tightly in your hand."; ep-dontkill in 6 turns from now.

An e-spear is a thing with printed name "spear". Understand "spear" as e-spear. The description is "Just bamboo, konokuk husk, and sharpened flint.".

Instead of attacking boar when player holds e-spear: try throwing e-spear at boar.

Instead of throwing e-spear at boar:

say "Rising to your feet, heart beating tightly high in your chest, you hurl the spear forward with every ounce of strength left in you, fingertips numb with tingles. All the pain of the ones you've lost goes into that throw; all the things you wished you could have done differently. But you can never go back. Only forward.[paragraph break]The spear pierces the soft flank of the boar and sinks deeply into its flesh. The creature spasms with a jagged-edged cry that explodes through the rain forest, flinging birds into the dawn sky in panicked volleys, stilling the movements of every other creature for a mile, so that the echoes of the high, piercing animal shriek die out in utter silence.[paragraph break]Breathing heavy, sweat beading as if you had run a marathon, you step out from your hiding place into the silent forest. The boar struggles feebly but is already slipping towards the dark edge of life, grunting almost quietly to itself as pools of thick and spreading blood seep into the rich loam beneath, drunk by the soil in relish.[paragraph break]You step up to the animal warily and put a hand on its soft flank, as if through touch you can somehow convey that its death will serve a purpose, will have meaning. But moments later all movement stops, its eyes become black wet orbs, and you feel some cold chill shudder the warm mists of the forest and through your hand, as if it was the boar that sent a message to you: life ends with death in the mud, alone.[paragraph break]There is much to do now, and most of it will be tiresome and unpleasant. But it must be done, whether you have the stomach for it or not. And when all is finished you too will leave this world, knowing little more of where you go than the creature cooling before you. And like it, you will never come back.[paragraph break][i]How many worlds...[r][line break]The sun rises, peeking through the swaying arms of the rain forest with hesitant rays.";

end the game in victory.

At the time when ep-dontkill:

say "[epgiveup]?[paragraph break]Perhaps there are other ways to find canvas. Perhaps there is more to explore of Lacuna, the mysteries of distant islands and continents. Perhaps there is even another way to leave this world behind, without the need to create a new one...[paragraph break][i]How many worlds...[r][line break]The sun rises, peeking through the swaying arms of the rain forest with hesitant rays.";

end the game in victory.

To say epgiveup: say "Finally, you lower the spear, and the boar sees or hears and spooks, crying out a single grunt of panic which flings birds into the dawn sky in panicked volleys. It crashes through the underbrush and moments later is gone.[paragraph break]You rub your cramped feet wearily as you stand in the now empty clearing, thoughts a tired clatter.[paragraph break]How many worlds have you moved through, Wayfarer?[paragraph break]Will you ever...?[paragraph break][if won-rebels]It will take a generation or more for the mothballed dreams of City to cross the light-years to Lacuna[else if won-trees]It will take a generation or more for another Egg from the Forest to cross the light-years to Lacuna[else]No one is coming to join you on this lonely island save the whispers of its sad, impotent trees[end if][if Progue is not dead]; Progue is already gone, an achingly smooth sculpture of some muse all he left behind[end if]. Even if you could wait, what would you be waiting for".

suicide-flag is a truth state that varies. Instead of attacking yourself during Epilogue-Ending-C:

say "[epgiveup]?[paragraph break]It is easy to wedge the spear firmly into the ground, tip pointing upwards, and even easier to climb one of the great, mossy trees. Birds scatter in all directions, wet muddy droplets squeeze from the dew-soaked vines. And as you fall, you know at last the answer to your question.";

now suicide-flag is true;

end the game in victory.

Instead of landmark-going or going or exiting during Epilogue-Ending-C: say "You're sure this is the best spot. If you move now you'll blow your cover.".