Session 59: "I didn't *mean* to get stabbed in the chest."

	Caitlin faints.  Merlin catches her, brings her into a side room,
and Trumps a doctor.  The doctor suggests that perhaps a pregnant woman
shouldn't be drinking alcohol, at least not when they're as new at
shapeshifting as Caitlin.  Oh, yeah.  Claudio, Archi and Laughter arrive
to check on her.  Caitlin claims she just overexerted herself.  Everyone
leaves but Merlin, who raises an eyebrow at the pregnant bit.  Caitlin
explains that it took place before she came to Amber.  Does the father
know?  No, he was killed.

	Melanie checks on Caitlin, to see if she's all right.  Caitlin
asks how Melanie is adjusting to her new role.  She claims it's still
sinking in, and asks if Caitlin will be returning to Amber.  Caitlin says
that she has a few things left to do in Chaos, and there is that land she
won...  She observes that Kaedric seems rather sad.  Melanie claims she
hadn't noticed, but he's doubtless still adjusting to his new position. 
Said with much dripping sarcasm, of course.

	Laughter leaves for 20 minutes, and returns in something
diaphanous.  Archi is much appreciative.  Kaedric talks with Archi, and
mentions that he's in trouble with Laughter.  Why?  Well, she's a bit
miffed at the Serpent's appearance.  Archi mentions that he had been
assured that such an appearance was unlikely.  Kaedric figured it was best
to be confirmed earlier than last time, then explains how he was the also
Crown Prince in the previous time-line.  Archi says he won't hold a
grudge, but Kaedric does owe him a favor.  Whether Laughter forgives him
remains to be seen.  They discuss how Melanie's pissed at Kaedric. 
Kaedric mentions the hundred years that he spent retraining himself in
fast-time Shadows.  He is understandably grateful for Laughter's
bachelorette party, especially the aftermath.  Archi can't believe
Kaedric's still interested in Melanie after passing all that time.  Like
he's one to talk about odd matches.  Kaedric asks if Archi has any advice
on being a Crown Prince.  Keep your head down, keep running, and watch
your wife's information network.  And, most importantly, keep the King
alive.  Good idea.

	Kaedric notices that Melanie and Caitlin are still chatting, and
decides to rescue one of them.  They are discussing the Serpent's
appearance as he approaches.  Melanie ignores his arrival until she sees
Caitlin looking over her shoulder.  Kaedric asks Melanie to dance the
supper dance with him.  Whatever.  Melanie charges Merlin with Caitlin's
welfare for the rest of the evening.  He is, of course, happy to oblige.

	Archi mentions to Laughter that they should probably get married
again in this time-line, at least in front of Random.  Laughter is miffed
by this.

	Kaedric asks Claudio if he shares Archi's opinion about the
marriage.  Well, Claudio doesn't trust Melanie.  Kaedric trusts her as far
as he needs to.  And what is Claudio up to?  The Cymnea attack.  Orrin's
pretty sure it will work.  So, who is he choosing as his partner for
supper?  Uh, he doesn't really know any unattached women.  Kaedric points
out that Caitlin's mother fits that description.  Uh, no.  Is Kaedric
taking off?  Only for a day or so.  He plans to speed up his Ways.  If
it's even necessary.  He explains why Melanie is pissed at him.

	The dinner ensues.  While Archi talks to Claudio, Laughter tells
Ulysses about the stupid thing that Archi is doing, namely going along
with Caitlin in her attack on Cymnea.  She wants Ulysses to go along, to
keep an eye on stupid.  Ulysses refuses, on moral grounds.  Archi
overhears the outrage, and begins paying attention to the conversation. 
He writes Laughter a message that says she looks utterly marvelous while
she's pouting.  She passes the note to Ulysses, causing Archi to give her
a dirty look.  Laughter takes Ulysses' hand and asks him psychically to at
least keep an eye on Archi, and pull him out if he's in trouble.  He'll do
that.  Laughter is happy.  Archi chuckles, until Laughter kicks him under
the table.

	Dinner is finished, a few more dances are danced.  Melanie winds
up dancing with Maron, Sylvester, and then Brand, who is disguised, of
course.  He's rather pleased with how things turned out, to say the least. 
Melanie is less than pleased with him, of course.  Finally, Kaedric and
Melanie leave the reception.  He Logruses with her to Kaedricways, carries
her across the threshold, and introduces her to Elspeth, her chief of
staff and mistress of protocol.  Elspeth introduces her to the rest of her
staff, including Kimberly, her midwife.  Melanie doesn't think the midwife
is really necessary, yet.  Elspeth proceeds to show Melanie around the
Ways.  The end of the tour is her bedroom, of course, which is joined to
Kaedric's via a connecting door.  Once Melanie is dressed for the evening,
she rings for a servant, to fetch a book for her to read.  Kaedric arrives
instead, and invites her to select a book from his personal library.  She
reluctantly agrees.  They have a long conversation, which basically boils
down to him apologizing and offering to answer any questions she has to
ask.  This takes a while, but it does have the beneficial affect of making
her less pissed, and they wind up passing the night in the traditional
manner for newlyweds.

	Caitlin hangs out at the reception until the wee hours, then goes
to sleep.  She does give Merlin a goodnight kiss, though.

	Archi and Laughter exchange erotic visions while dancing.  They
Trump out shortly thereafter.  Gee, what a surprise.  More sex ensues.

	Orrin arrives at Caitlin's in the morning.  He explains that his
brothers will be around Halybardways, but Maron will not.  The biggest
problem will be Finndo.  Caitlin mentions Swayvill's support, which
surprises Orrin, since he hadn't realized that Swayvill wanted Cymnea gone
that badly.  After Orrin, Merlin arrives, and then the Logrus Master Crew
de Swayvill.  Introductions are made, and then Caitlin Trumps Claudio.  He
comes through, and puts his ring on.  Archi is Trumped next, and asks
Laughter to armor his clothing before he goes.  While she is doing so,
Archi notices that something is up with her.  He inquires, but she
(miserably) tries to hide it.  He joins the others and is introduced. 
Something about balls is communicated.  There is a big strategy meeting. 
They're going to march into House Halybard.  Archi is nonplussed.  They go
on foot, to be stealthy.  Caitlin takes a steel-skinned form, and they get
to Halybardways.

	Laughter Trumps Ulysses, and offers him breakfast.  He pops to
Laughter's side, and begins eating and such.  He also summons a Pattern
lens, for he and Laughter to watch through.  He and Laughter try to work
audio into it.

	There is a discussion of stealth, then Archi pulls a laser gun
out, and busts the guards' heads open.  They begin the long trek to the
house.  They approach a glowing barrier, which falls to Merlin to dispel. 
Archi passes through first, and as Merlin passes through last, he passes
out.  Archi conjures smelling salts.  Merlin comes to, and announces that
every spell that was hung on the party is now gone.  Joy.

	The group continues on, and come upon a new group of guards.
Archi starts shooting again, but they're more ready for the group.  They
pass through the gate to the fortress, and dispatch the guards.  Then the
Logrus creeps in, and people raise Pattern.  Archi tries to use the Jewel
shards to shift the rules, but it doesn't quite work.

	The group continues going.  Caitlin tries to use logic, but gets
rebuffed, and fights instead.  The demons are the same as Laughter's old
Halybard guard, so Archi shouts out how to best defeat them.  Orrin points
out that this is the point where some people are going to have to get left
behind, to bind up Orrin's brothers.  The brothers get killed, two by
Guardians of the Logrus and Claudio, another by Caitlin after disrupting
the Logrus, knocking both combatants out.  They can't wake him up, and
decide to leave the guy behind.  Laughter points this out to Ulysses, who
then Trump holes the dude back.

	The posse moves on, and are accosted by another blonde guy.  Yet
another Logrus battle ensues.  Claudio asks for a psychic impression of
Cymnea, so he'll know her when he sees her.  They leave a Guardian to
duel, and move on.

	The group comes up against a wall of Logrus blocking the hall.
Caitlin jabs a sword into the ground, creating a Logrus free bubble.
Claudio goes through, gets fireballed, and passes out.  Owie.  They pull
him back, and bring him around.  He puts up a force wall, and goes through
again with a laser pistol.  The wall stops the next fireball.  Claudio
puts a hole in his wall, and fires the laser through it.  Then he makes
the wall protective enough to cover the rest of the group, so they can
pass through.  Claudio plans on making new walls in front of the old ones,
and moving on that way.  A group of people run smack into the wall down
the hall.  Claudio traps them in between two walls, and the group busts
them up.

	They finally exit into a large dining hall, with a dais (upon
which Cymnea is sitting).  Finndo stands in front of a row of four people,
who are in turn in front of Cymnea.  The lackeys are in front of Finndo. 
The lackeys move in, the wall comes down, and the fireballs fly.  About
half of the lackeys go down, and the fighters move in after that.  A
Logrus tendril grabs Archi, and lifts him up, until he gets the Pattern
up, and he thuds to the ground.  Caitlin sets herself on frappe.  Archi
gets tossed around, making it hard to hold the Pattern.  Archi tries to
shoot at Finndo, but the beams bounce harmlessly away.  Then the pistol
gets taken away from him, via Logrus.  By now, the only thing between
Finndo and them is the walls Finndo put up.  Then, they get attacked from
behind, so Claudio puts up a wall behind them.  Archi tries to bring up
the Pattern, but gets stabbed through the chest by the Logrus.  Ulysses
chooses this time to bring him back.  They dismiss all the walls, and
Finndo Trumps out.  The Logrus masters, Claudio and Merlin occupy the
final guards.  Caitlin, seeing Cymnea with a Trump, tosses a sword at her. 
It helps keep her from leaving, and impales her.  Caitlin quickly beheads
Cymnea, and then Orrin begins the whole passage of power ritual.  Caitlin
goes to Trump Swayvill, and a Logrus master takes the card from her, and
reveals that HE is Swayvill.  One of Orrin's brothers shows up, is
dumbfounded, and bows down to Caitlin.

	Archi is unconscious, but sees something in the distance.  It's
the Unicorn, who almost jokingly asks if Archi's trying to test his
immortality.  It says that Archi's son is the reason that Random and Archi
get an extra shake with the Unicorn.  Archi's son is to be the greatest
king Amber ever had.  Whoopie.  And the Unicorn suggests that the rings
might be a good thing, and what would happen if everybody put them on?

	Laughter talks with Claudio, and he asks why Archi didn't wear any
armor.  She sighs.  He asks for a treatment for his burns, which Laughter
helps provide.

	Archi wakes up, and has a bunch of steel staples in his chest.  He
asks to see if they won.  Ulysses debates that point.  Ulysses suggests
that Archi use the ability to shift Shadow to make ignorance a valid
excuse for what he's done.  Archi investigates his wound, and further
inquires about what happened.  Laughter comes in, and asks for a moment

	Ulysses goes to find Claudio.  He does find him, and shuts off the
pain sensing of Claudio's brain.  Ulysses also suggests that Claudio get
help from Gerard.

	Laughter and Archi deal with the fact that Archi almost died.  He
relates the encounter with the Unicorn, and she runs out.  She runs into
Ulysses on his way back to Archi.  She tells him that she can't cry in
front of Archi, so she's going to cry on him.  Woah.

	Claudio talks with Gerard about his injuries, and how they
happened, and all that jazz.  Gerard scolds him.  The discussion between
the two mental titans continues.

	Ulysses takes Laughter into a miscellaneous bedroom, and offers
her comfort.  No, not that kind of comfort.  Sequence leaves, and goes to
scold Archi.  This prompts Archi to get out of bed.  He has to conjure
crutches, and tries to get the sword to take him to Laughter.  It does,
and she doesn't want to see him.  He is persistent, and makes his way over
to the couch, finally plopping down next to her.  She relates her
unhappiness.  Ulysses continues to listen, in case he's needed.  Archi
comments on not being able to get into bed, so Ulysses Trumps him there,
sans Laughter.  He's miffed.  Laughter thanks Ulysses, and he leaves.  She
goes to Archi.  They discuss things.  Laughter wants to go sit in a tree
for a while.  Archi says he'd have to get her out.  They keep talking and
working things out.

	Melanie is talking with Kaedric, about things that happened. 
Swayvill Trumps Kaedric, and tells him about Cymnea's defeat.  Kaedric
tells Melanie that Claudio has been injured, and Trumps to him.  Claudio
relates his story to Kaedric.  Claudio wants to learn how to shapeshift. 
Kaedric says he can, but it would take tens of years.  Kaedric goes about
healing him.

	Kaedric then Trumps Archi, and offers to burn Archi's favor by
healing him.  He agrees, so Kaedric comes through and does so.  Laughter
is warned not to kick Archi's ass too soon, and she begrudgingly assents. 
Kaedric is tired, but he and Melanie still have to make an appearance in
Chaos, to open a Kwik-E-Mart.  Or, more accurately, to attend Caitlin's
"coronation."  Caitlin Trumps Archi and Claudio first, to let them know
they won.  The formal recognition ceremony isn't for a few days, but in
the meantime, Caitlin should take a trip to the demon underworld soon. 
They discuss the reactions of surviving Halybards, primarily Finndo and
Maron, as well as Caitlin's taking the position of High Priestess of the
Serpent.  Maron is suggested as a good source for what the duties of the
Priestess are, exactly.  Since Melanie knows him, it falls to her to
contact him.  All the other protocol bullshit is discussed, and it's a big
thrill for all, but look in Caitlin's diary.

	Melanie Trumps Maron.  She relates things to him.  It's news to
him, and they discuss the situation.  Maron leaves.  Melanie talks with
Kaedric again, and he wants to go on their honeymoon.

	Caitlin talks to Orrin.  They discuss policy changes, and such. 
She swallows her pride, and asks him for help.  He offers it, but mentions
that there are some people who will probably need to be killed.  He gets
hired as Chief Advisor.

	Claudio wants to learn how to do ship stuff.  Ulysses gets Eudoxus


"I don't say anything as I faint." -- Caitlin to GM

"What is (Melanie) upset with you about now?" -- Claudio
"That whole Serpent thing.  Women are so unreasonable." -- Kaedric

"There was no chance that the Serpent would have eaten *everyone* in the
wedding party." -- Kaedric to Claudio

"What happened?" -- Caitlin
"I can't tell you right now." -- Shade
"Well, I don't ask the COMATOSE GUY!" -- Dwinn

"Was it a fake?" -- Dwinn
"How would you tell?" -- Mer
"Wendi said so." -- Dwinn

"I'm sorry, Laughter." -- Archi to Laughter
"I didn't *mean* to get stabbed in the chest." -- Dann

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