Page 944 - Born With It

8th Aug 2017, 6:00 AM in The Best Night Ever, Part 1
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Born With It
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 8th Aug 2017, 6:00 AM edit delete
Hooray, I (theoretically) survived record-breaking temperatures!

What's that? Now it's going to get really humid for this region? Come on!!

Notice: Guest comic submissions are open! Guidelines here. Deadline: January 27th, 2023.



Digo Dragon 8th Aug 2017, 6:18 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
I'm used to and not used to that kind of weather. It's like... it happens often here and I know what it is, but I don't know that humankind was meant to evolve to survive it. ^^;
Draxynnic 8th Aug 2017, 6:31 AM edit delete reply
Well, humans as a species evolved to cope with Africa...

Specific ethnicities, now, not so much.
Digo Dragon 8th Aug 2017, 6:45 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
I was being satirical. I mean, humans survive Australia and there's plenty about what makes that place dangerous. :3
Godzfirefly 8th Aug 2017, 1:57 PM edit delete reply
Humans as a species are designed to survive the North African climate. Evolution cares little about individuals, though, so each heat wave pre-AC definitely killed some small percentage of humanity.
Jennifer 8th Aug 2017, 5:28 PM edit delete reply
Designed to survive, not necessarily to thrive.
T 9th Aug 2017, 6:21 AM edit delete reply
We also survived the Ice age. My favorite temperature is below freezing point.
Guest 8th Aug 2017, 8:06 AM edit delete reply
Last week it got so humid around here that it was still warm HOURS after sunset. It was super weird.
ANW 8th Aug 2017, 8:17 AM edit delete reply
They are the tricksters,
The beings of the shadows,
They are the ones that says,
"You might hide, but your pockets can't"
They are, the thieves.
Show why they should be,
The Class of the Year.
Anvildude 8th Aug 2017, 3:14 PM edit delete reply
You know what annoys me about Thieves as a class archetype? (That is, Rogues, Cutpurses, Bandits, all the sneaky-stealy-type classes.)

Nobody ever plays them Like, they're only ever picked as either an excuse to go klepto-happy "Mineminemine!" or as skill-monkeys. Or for their Sneak Attack, but that's honestly a more Assassin-y archetype that just tends to cross over.

Where's the literary rogues? The weasely little coward who'd rather run from a fight, but who's dangerous as all get-out if cornered? Where's the victim of circumstances, the guy who stole a loaf of bread and got immersed in the culture of the underworld, but who's actually a really decent person at heart? Where's the contacts, the fences, the organized crime? I'd like to see that sort of 'thief' in a campaign now and again.
Fauxst 8th Aug 2017, 8:46 PM edit delete reply
Actually! I played a Rogue of an alternate variety in a recent beginner campaign: Nox, the Chaotic Good mute spy with an arsenal of mainly smoke bombs, paint, and firecrackers. He specializes in cute, stealth, and sleight of hand magic tricks, a master of misdirection and coward who would rather run from a fight whenever possible. When needed in a scuffle, however, he'll do what he can. From a distance. Nonlethally. I had to go to *lengths* to get him a stave proficiency in the campaign, the DM was not into it. Of course, the DM also had to rearrange my skill proficiencies very first session because he hadn't planned on me NOT taking Disable Device at Level 1, so I got stuck in an infinite hallway (note that I failed the check anyway and nearly killed myself).

Nox is a very fun character and I've ported him into several different systems since that first adventure. I particularly liked playing a class against my DM's expectations, even if I did have to strong arm him a little, which is kind of the downfall; if you say you're going to be whatever Class, everyone thinks they know what you'll play like and plan accordingly. When you deviate, they get confused and may even just say "No, that won't fit." Which is fair, but it puts limits on people in a freeform gaming format just because you still have to fit with a group and they may not be as flexible as you want them to be. Everyone has their own narrative going on and they expect you to fulfill a specific function in it; everyone else's narrative is secondary to them. Again, none of which I fault them for, it's just an observation.
Digo Dragon 9th Aug 2017, 6:01 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
My Ranger took some rogue levels for the social skills and ability to set and disable traps. I play him as an adventurous bounty hunter looking to do good deeds and pull together a team to fight dangerous monsters that are plaguing the countryside.
reynard61 9th Aug 2017, 10:43 PM edit delete reply
I'm currently writing an "Altered History" Urban Fantasy story that takes place in early 18th-Century London about an orphan girl who lives in the sewers* and steals only food. (I'd like to turn it into either a webcomic or graphic novel series.)

*London didn't actually get sewers until the 1860s. "Urban *Fantasy*", remember?
Dusk 10th Aug 2017, 8:58 PM edit delete reply
Oh hey I can contribute this time! Now it's not really a character I've had a chance to play but whenever I thought of playing D&D I've built up this lovely rogue, tragic backstory? Check Special skills from the guardian tree of abilities? Check. He may be a rogue but it's because his experience as a locksmith and lack of talent with any weapon that aren't knives make that the only adventuring class he can do. He's gotten so used to the idea that people will always suspect him or hate him just because of what he does that he now introduces himself as Villa. Short for Villain or Villify as that's what everyone does. He rises through the Thieves Guild with his talent of sneaking and thieving but keeps himself to a code. He's become quite well known and feared in his own alias but all he wants is to find his way back home, someplace that was hidden by magic and affected his memory to the point he had to stop studying to be a scholar and now takes copious notes so he won't forget anything important.
BunBun299 9th Aug 2017, 11:54 PM edit delete reply
So, a story about thieves. I don't normally like playing a rogue type character. I tend to prefer heavy armor and swords. Or failing that, staves and raining down fire. Stealth isn't something I'm naturally drawn to. But then I ended up making a thief character who ended up becoming one of my favorites. My dhampir thief.

Her OOC origin was from a free form fantasy nation RP I joined online a number of years back. There were no real rules, we all just made our nations, the characters within them, and a gentleman's agreement not to just conquer one another's lands or kill of major characters while the other guy slept. I had a small party assembled who would be the main POV characters for my nation. Then one of the other players told me he wanted the Prince of his nation to have a bit of a Tenchi effect to him. Lots of girls from all over falling for him. And he asked me if any girls from my nation would get in on that. Well, the female party members I'd already made had intended boyfriends, and I didn't want them involved in an anime love polygon. But with a nation to play with, I could just make a new character. And I decided that if I was going to throw a girl at this guy, she was going to be trouble. I forget if I decided on the thief or vampire thing first, but neither seemed quite trouble enough. And so I decided on a thief that steals your money, and a bit of your blood.

And she ended up becoming the single most interesting character in the whole game. Everyone wanted their characters to have adventures with her. I think she only ended up meeting the guy she was supposed to flirt with twice, she was so busy with other things.

Well, time passed, the game died, the board we played it on crashed. And my dhampir thief ceased to exist anywhere but in my head. Then one of the guys who had been in that game that I still talked to invited me into an RP group. This group used much more structure and rules, but I was eager for a more advanced game experience. Initially we were doing a Pony RP, but that game didn't go very far. Then the guy who was the primary GM of the group started talking about another RP he was forming, one where each PC would be a refugee from a dead world, on a quest to prevent more worlds from dying. And as the other members discussed their character ideas, warriors seemed covered, as did the magic department. But the party did not have a rogue. And I realized, especially with that story of everyone coming from a dead world, this was the perfect place to bring back my dhampir thief.

Her IC backstory is that she was raised by her mother, an ancient vampire queen and powerful sorceress, and growing up a vampire, she kinda sorta.... killed more people than she can possibly count. Upon learning that she was half human, she realized what a monster she'd been, and swore to never kill another person again, even to save her own life. She ran away from home, and became a thief because stealth skills are important for evading her mother's people. She'll kill animals or undead (though not vampires as she considers them family), but never people.

I was rather amazed how close my thief and Friendship is Dragons Rarity are. Both thieves, with a bit of magic on the side, high social skills, and a generous streak to them. When ever my thief robs some rich snob with more money than they could possibly need, she sneaks some of that coin into the coffers of the local orphanage, or some poor widow, or crippled beggar, etc.

So, for a story that happened in this game. This takes place shortly after a story I told during story time about Bards a few comics ago. The King was throwing a party in our honor. And also, a party member who'd dropped out, a Kitsune Mage, rejoined us. During the party, she mentioned having gotten angry with the Fox man she'd been shacking up with (her IC reason for dropping for a time), and wanting a bit of payback. She wouldn't disclose specifics, just that she wanted a certain sword from his collection. Well, hadn't stolen anything in a while, and always eager to help out a friend. Plus her ex was attending the party, so I knew he wasn't home, so off my thief went to burglarize his place.

It was fairly easy at first. The few guards around the place were bypassed with a few good stealth rolls. Got to the guy's treasure room, but found three swords in the place. Taking all three would be a tad bulky, and I felt asking Kitsune Mage OOC would be cheating, so I guessed. Passed on the two broadswords, and took the katana.

And upon removing the katana from his case, a suit of armor in the room came to life and attacked. Now, I probably could have just fought this thing, conscience free. It's just a magic construct. But the longer I stayed, the more likely living guards would show up. And while the King had earlier that evening rewarded me with a special dagger that couldn't kill, merely knock out the victim (I think the GM was getting tired of me thinking of creative ways to participate in fights without lethal force), I didn't want to use a weapon at a crime scene that could be so easily traced back to me. So, my dhampir thief made a mad dash for the door, then out the window as the guards investigated the noise.

Gave the katana to the Kitsune Mage, only for her to wear it to a meeting with the King the next day, when he knew a sword had been stolen by then. She was lucky not to be arrested on the spot. Thankfully the King had used for her, and she did not mention my thief's name in relation to it. So burglary went all right, in spite the little problems.

Ultimately, when Kitsune Mage dropped out again, probably permanently this time, she gave the katana back to her as a parting gift. It's useful against beasts and undead.
Calvinball 10th Aug 2017, 1:06 AM edit delete reply
One of the Big Bads of my campaign was a thief. A criminal magician (mechanically a rogue-wizard) who went rogue (heh) from the city guild in order to pursue lichdom. With an Arcane Trickster and a Criminal background adventurer in the party, it was pretty fun.

The thief is one of those classes with a great built in story hook. It's easy to think of what a thief might get up to. Heists, black markets, all sorts of stuff.
Professor Hawke 10th Aug 2017, 8:14 AM edit delete reply
I've been playing a Rogue in a Pathfinder game who is a Barrister by day, Gentleman Thief by night. The adopted daughter of an Ifrit who had taken on a similar double life, who inherited his talent with the whip and his fiery glare.

She's been helping the party deal with criminals and protecting the innocent in court over just a few sessions. The city is in an uproar over the recent passing of the king and the rise to power of his young (and unpopular) queen, so she's been more than a little busy between the two.

She helped take down the killer of her father in the first session (the party brought together by a mutual grudge against him). The group agreed to bring him to the guard and have him stand trial- the consensus being that if he died in his hideout, some of his victims might live the rest of their lives fearing he might've faked it and is waiting to come back again, while public trial and execution would put any such concerns to rest and provide closure.

She specializes in non-lethal take downs, crowd control, and debuffs has made for fun play besides. Using a whip effectively as your 'main' weapon is pretty feat heavy (especially since Rogues don't get proficiency with Whips, to my surprise; had to make her a Half-elf to get it from her race), but being able to trip from that far away (and on an Attack of Opportunity, which she gets several of from Combat Reflexes) has been pretty fun.

I've admittedly cheesed her up a decent amount, using the Enforcer feat (can intimidate to demoralize as a free action after inflicting non-lethal damage with a melee attack, the penalties lasting for a number of rounds equal to the non-lethal damage), the Thug archetype for the Rogue (trades Trap stuff for the ability to inflict Frightened whenever I would make an enemy Shaken for 4 or more rounds), and Fiery Glare (Ifrit racial trait, can always take 10 on intimidate).

Overall, the game's been amazing fun, especially thanks to the GM and the rest of the party. She's been a character I've had kicking around in the back of my mind for quite some time, and getting to play her has been loads of fun.
Anvildude 10th Aug 2017, 3:21 PM edit delete reply
That sounds like a blast of a character to play. Sometimes, specializing in, shall we say _tangential-to-combat_ disciplines can make for incredibly fun play.
Samwich 8th Aug 2017, 8:33 AM Cleveland edit delete reply
Hooray for living in Cleveland! We never have to worry about that kind of heat, it's only ever cold, cold and raining, raining, or cold and snowing.
Cygnia 8th Aug 2017, 10:09 AM edit delete reply
Don't forget the road construction!
Digo Dragon 8th Aug 2017, 10:31 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Cold and road construction!
Dragonflight 8th Aug 2017, 12:36 PM edit delete reply
Reminds me of the joke about Canada. Here, we have four seasons: Almost Winter, Winter, Still Winter, and Construction.
Digo Dragon 9th Aug 2017, 6:02 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
Hee hee. Change Winter to Summer and you basically have Florida.
Tyrantviewer 9th Aug 2017, 10:24 AM irony edit delete reply
That's funny considering it snowed the only time I visited florida, not much and it was at night but still
Digo Dragon 10th Aug 2017, 4:59 AM edit delete reply
Digo Dragon
What year? I think that happened near Christmas 06 or 07. Was like a minute of flurries and that's it. Nothing that would impact anything, but oh my Celestia did so many people panic like it was the end of the world. XD
Freelance 8th Aug 2017, 10:45 AM edit delete reply
As soon as Pinkie said, "How bad can he be?" I snorted, both at the tempting fate trope, and the recollection of this episode.
So, did anybody else also snort fighting back a laugh?
ZhonLord 8th Aug 2017, 12:15 PM edit delete reply
Fighting back a laugh? Try letting it out full volume!

At this point I'm betting Blueblood is either a member of the Thieves' Guild or full-blown Elusive himself. Pretty good cover as an jerk-noble who no one wants to try courting.
Rastaba 8th Aug 2017, 12:47 PM edit delete reply
I am eager to see how this winds up going off the rails...why can't Thursday hurry up!?!?
Mykin 9th Aug 2017, 7:18 AM edit delete reply
I know, right?!
Thomas Kemp 8th Aug 2017, 1:37 PM edit delete reply
Why am I suddenly feeling like he's secretly part of the thieve's guild?
Anvildude 8th Aug 2017, 3:14 PM edit delete reply
And all the jerk-y hijinks of this episode was him attempting to assassinate her?
ZhonLord 8th Aug 2017, 3:32 PM edit delete reply
Or at least ruin Dainty Dove's public image.
KSClaw 8th Aug 2017, 2:11 PM edit delete reply
Aaaand Pinkie Pie jinxed everything.
Peteman 8th Aug 2017, 5:15 PM edit delete reply
I like to believe in this, Blueblood has Rarity pegged.

"You think you're the first mare to come after me and my fortune? Please, you're not even the first purple-maned white unicorn with a tri-gemmed cutie mark and a name that rhymes with 'parity'".
aerion111 9th Aug 2017, 9:45 AM edit delete reply
My favorite depictions of Blueblood are when he's still a massive jerk, but is quite skilled at the 'games of nobles', like courtship, ambassadorships, and so on.
So, yeah, I too like to believe that Blueblood knew exactly what Rarity was doing.
Captain Snark 8th Aug 2017, 5:18 PM edit delete reply
Oh Pinkie, Pinkie, Pinkie. I would have thought you of all ponies would know not to tempt fate like that.

Unless she's tempting fate on purpose to spice up the plot...
Needling Haystacks 8th Aug 2017, 5:25 PM edit delete reply
I'm not a female, so maybe it's because I'm not the target demographic, but I find Fabio somewhat disturbing. Anyone else feel that way? I don't know what it is, he just makes feel me vaguely uneasy. Maybe it's his association with pulp romance novels whose back covers tend to make the front covers look rather less romantic...
KSClaw 10th Aug 2017, 6:24 AM edit delete reply
it might be a generation thing too? I'm female, but I've never found Fabio particularly appealing.
Frission 12th Oct 2017, 9:48 AM edit delete reply
Calling it now, Blueblood is Elusive. :3