Author Topic: Earning Every Vote  (Read 244 times)

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Offline ChordTerias

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Re: Earning Every Vote
« Reply #15 on: December 21, 2019, 06:50:45 AM »
Theo's eyes obviously lit up when Jake proposed his deal. They listened, frowning as he continued.

Theo carefully considered their words. "That's a very bad deal... especially for you." Theo said. They stated it plain, no malice or indignation behind their voice. "Forgive me if I sound condescending, it's not intentional -- I've been doing this for quite some time.

"Anyone who wants to make your life difficult could easily extort that deal -- find a way to convince you that I'm behind disappearances. A Fae would do it by manipulate your subordinates emotions, convincing THEM in hopes it would convince YOU. Make you think I've broken my end of the bargain. If you took any efforts to revoke my invitation and it was due to their machinations, then you would be the one who broke the contract and have to pay the price. A deal that strong? The consequences would be dire. You might lose control over the district entirely." Theo shook their head. "Far too risky."

"I think I know what you're wanting, though."

Theo grabbed a pen and began writing on a napkin. Words did not appear. Instead, an image that looked as a melody sounds was drawn upon the surface. It was inexplicable by conventional speech, but entrancing. "There," Theo appeared satisfied. "Contracts written in glamour are harder to make a loophole. They're not foolproof, but relatively harmless."

When Theo turned the napkin towards Jake, he was able to understand the terms of the contract.
    Terms:
    • Theo may not take any Mortal into their service against their own will -- unaltered by Theo or anyone acting on their directions.
    • Theo will advise Jake on matters pertaining to the Fae, should he become the district leader.
    • Jake and his subordinates may not interfere with anyone claimed by the An Tsí, unless they are in violation of district laws that have been discussed between Theo and Jake directly.
      • Any new district laws must be disclosed directly to Theo before anyone claimed by the An Tsí is bound to follow them.
      • Theo must agree that district laws have been created in good faith, and can object and propose an alternative in cases of entrapment or impossible terms.
    • Jake (and a plus one of his choice) will meet with Theo (and a plus one of their choice) at a minimum of once a month for drinks.
    Oath:
    • Theo and Jake are unable to lie to one another -- directly or indirectly -- in response to a question regarding terms of this contract or a discussion of breach of terms.
    • Jake and Theo are entering this contract in good faith. Any discussion of breach will be discussed amicably. Consequences will be considered if there was a willful breach of terms.
    • The parties may choose to exit this agreement, should they both agree. One party may offer the other party a gift to encourage, but a threat of any kind will be treated as a breach of the oath.

    Consequences
    • Should Theo break the listed terms, the An Tsi will be inaccessible to the city. Theo will be unable to pull glamour from anyone who considers this city their home.
      • Theo will return any and all Mortals who so desire -- of their own, unaltered free will -- to the Mortal World.
      • As penance, Theo will create a Prop to be used at Jake's discretion. The Prop must hold a title proper.
    • Should Jake break the listed terms, he will forfeit one of his subordinates to Theo's service until such a time when Theo releases them willingly.
      • Jake will submit a list of up to three subordinates at the time that the contract is sealed. They will need to agree to the contract as well.
      • As such, the subordinates must be someone that Jake trusts and that trusts Jake.
      • Theo will decide which of the three subordinates to take.
      • Theo may not mistreat their new follower. They will be subject to the same rules, freedoms, and repercussions as all members of An Tsi.
      • Jake may take the place of his subordinate if he so chooses.

    When Jake appeared to understand, Theo explained, "I think that captured the essence of what you wanted to accomplish with your deal, but it makes it much less advantageous for anyone to want to interfere. The consequences are serious, but much less dire than anything open ended would be." They look up to Jake, "How does it sound?"

    Offline Black Philip

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    Re: Earning Every Vote
    « Reply #16 on: December 21, 2019, 07:13:19 AM »
    Jake found it perplexing, and frankly annoying, that Fae seemed to take every word he said as the final one. Of course they'd negotiate terms, although his point about being manipulated was well taken. It led to a follow up question. He looked over the contract, reading the conditions and making marks in his mind.

    "Should I worry about Fae trying to manipulate me into betraying you, like your father?"

    It was a fair inquiry. He kept reading as Theo answered. He looked up, his face all business for the moment. "I have a few questions and suggested edits," he stated. "First, when you say, "into their service," what exactly does that mean? All people must follow all the laws equally. I can't agree to any form of self governance. I don't think that's exactly what you're getting at, but if I'm looking for loop holes that looks like a big one."

    He kept scanning. "Drinks sound lovely, but I would prefer if that was built on actual trust, not a part of the deal. I would love to break bread, but out of respect and gratitude, not obligation."

    More scanning. "I approve of the no lying clause, and that text 'in good faith.' I feel respected. As to exiting from the deal, my only suggestion is an annual renewal, say... over a drink? That way either of us can exit if we like, but not just whenever we want. It splits the difference."

    Jake now got to consequences. "Explain the props more, if you'd please, and I will offer myself instead of others. This is my deal, and I wouldn't want anyone else to feel like they need to accept to serve me, or to make this deal possible. I will not violate my end."

    Jake now waited for the answers to his questions, and the thoughts on his suggestions. He then had a light bulb moment.

    "Oh! Wait! One other thing. I would like to have the contract specify that you will not work with my opponent, Ben Samson, and that you will support my bid for the district. If you do, I am likely to close the gap and win."
    Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
    - Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


    Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras

    Offline ChordTerias

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    Re: Earning Every Vote
    « Reply #17 on: December 21, 2019, 07:50:50 AM »
    Theo nodded.

    "Fae love to manipulate -- they love to do the most of their work by proxy. I find that you would be harder to manipulate, your emotions feel all muddy and gross, so I think you have something protecting you on another level. But that would just mean they'd probably take another route. Fae are lazy and they wouldn't go for someone like you who would be a LOT of work if they could help it."

    Theo grinned, "Since that contract is written in glamour, instead of being written in any of your Mortal languages, it's funny to see how your brain translates it. My brain reads that entirely different, basically says that you can't MAKE a district law that is impossible for me to follow -- in order to try to get me to break the contract and suffer the consequences of breaking the contract." Theo gave Jake a moment for the words to sink in.

    "Basically, if there is a district law that is created that is impossible for me and mine to follow, and that law was created in good faith to the city as a whole, then we would have to find a compromise that is possible."

    Theo poured themselves some tea, holding the teacup with both hands. "Regarding the part about my service, Fae are able to 'take' people. It means different things for different Fae, but you can consider it traditional the-fairies-are-coming-to-take-your-children-to-their-realm. The difference for me is that the people that I 'take' work at my bar, protect me from people who would try to cut off my head," Theo blows a raspberry teasingly towards Jake and then lets out a soft 'oh!' and turns their tea into raspberry tea. "... and I think you get the point. When someone is in my service, it is nigh impossible to turn down a command that I give them, but as you can see with that one over there..." Theo jerks a thumb to Rohan, who is mockingly tilting his head side to side as he mimicks Theo's speech, "... I give a rather long leash."

    Rohan is throwing towels, yet again. "You wish you could leash me, softie." Theo merely rolled their eyes, smiling despite themselves.

    "The drinks caveat, while put in a fun manner, is more a protective clause. It ensures that we are meeting up regularly. Fae don't create contracts without some form of timeframe on them. Well. They can. But the magic gets weird, unpredictable. That's the last thing we want. It's not technically required, but it'd be like if..." Theo thought to themselves. "Like if you were to hotwire your car every time you drove it. It may do in a pinch, but you'd probably just use the key if you had it."

    Theo paused and considered. "Props are complicated to explain, but we'll summarize it as an extraordinarily powerful magical item. It'd be easier to give an example of the power of a Prop. Excalibur was one." Theo thought to themselves. "Oh, the notebook used by the person who created the atom bomb was a Prop. There are other ones that haven't been world-shattering, too. Like jewel that produces an endless flow of water. Or a blade that can cut through anything -- even its own scabbard." Theo drummed their fingers on the top of the bar. "The Prop has an ancient and powerful magic tied to it -- a word... a concept. It then has power given to it by Arcadia to embody that concept entirely. The Fae have to make a huge personal sacrifice to make one, so to say they are rare would be an understatement. That I am offering one is probably much bigger than you realize, but it drives home that I intend to keep my end of the bargain."

    Theo altered the contract to fit their agreement. "One thing," Theo said, "I will update it so that it says I will support your bid for the district and that I will not offer support for Ben's bid for the district; however, if he wins, I will be able to work with him in his new capacity."

    Offline Black Philip

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    Re: Earning Every Vote
    « Reply #18 on: January 08, 2020, 07:11:14 AM »
    Jake appreciated Theo's honesty about fae being manipulative, but was nervous to learn more and more about them. He didn't want his thoughts increasing their power. However, he figured he would compartmentalize those thoughts to minimize their effectiveness. He would think of Fae when they were relevant, but would try to think of Theo as just Theo. Jake considered telling Theo of the ring, but decided to address the topic another way.

    "My thoughts are my own. Nobody knows them without my consent, ever. No ancient vampire, witch's spell or Fae will ever pierce that veil. My feelings often betray me and aren't how I really feel about something. Other Fae are welcome to try, but it would not be a good use of time to try and squeeze blood from this very stubborn stone."

    Jake didn't fully understand the concept of glamour, but decided he didn't need to as long as they reached agreement. Less was more. When Theo explained about laws and their fairness, Jake understood him better.

    "My laws are created with the idea of fairness and safety. I won't make laws you can't follow. My campaign literature, and current laws spell out what I have planned. I advise you to scan them and tell me if anything would be problematic."

    Jake was less enthusiastic about the idea of followers doing what Theo said, and the idea of a long leash did little to quell his fears. A long leash today didn't mean one for all time. Jake considered that those who would want to work here knew what they'd be signing up for, and so Jake decided he would agree to it, with a watchful eye.

    "Leave in the drinks provision," Jake replied, "But I insist you come to my bar first. We've paid you two visits. It's time you paid us one."

    Jake smiled so Theo would know he wasn't casting aspirations, but extending an invitation. He was proud of his bar, and liked to show it to other proprietors. Props got Jake's attention, his eyes widening and his glamour becoming hungrier. "Interesting," he replied. "I know who has the real Excalibur right now," he teased. "I wonder if Robin knows he is wielding a powerful prop."

    He'd told this information to Lan Bao recently as well. Tyler was going to murder him for discussing their sire. "And to the Ben clause I agree. Our deal falls apart if I have no power and protection to offer you. Is that agreeable?"

    It sounded like they were honing in on a final product. Jake was pleased. This had gone well, despite being much more than he'd imagined. Theo seemed a powerful ally. Jake needed more of them.
    Be a sadist. Now matter how sweet and innocent your leading characters, make awful things happen to them — in order that the reader may see what they are made of.
    - Kurt Vonnegut Jr.


    Jake Benny Kyle Lisa-Joe James/Jimmy Tess Tyler Flick Apep Ari Lacy Mithras