101 Clever as the Devil and Twice as Pretty
[Rare Title Acquired: NPC Whisperer]
Throughout history, the most dangerous people are always clever, compelling, and charismatic.
|| Charisma is the fragrance of the soul, and you smell sweet as sun-ripened berries. NPCs shouldn't care about such things; they should only be concerned with what their AI God tells them to be concerned with.
But they can't help but feel the pull of your charisma. "God may love us," they say, "but the Devil takes an interest." And you, dear boy, are Clever as the Devil and twice as pretty.
Only time will tell whether you'll wield your powers for good or for evil.
When equipped, Title increases user's negotiation rate with NPCs. When combined with Active Charisma Skills, skill efficacy increases by 15%.
At all times (even when unequipped), Title grants user Nobility Reputation.
Upgradeable Title. BeFriend more Celestial-Tier NPCs to Increase the Title's Effects.||
I have questions.
Namely, how am I so fucking awesome?
But also, is the AI eavesdropping on my brain and stealing names for Titles and Skills and shit?
And also also, WHAT IS NOBILITY REP?! Am I a Lord or Knight or something now?
Before I can explore any of these lines of inquiry, victorious music plays, and the Four Horsemen appear in a cloud of violet smoke.
No Bob with them, so they must have let the normy die.
I hope he ran away and will never have to work with these crazy mofos again, but who knows. Maybe the dude's secretly a masochist.
(Okay, lies, I am judging a little. But only because Polemos and Loimos are suuuch dicks. There have to be better sadists to serve, you know?)
"REMATCH, WORTHLESS BASTARDS!" Polemos (War) bellows immediately.
"You must have cheated. That's why you picked that Dungeon!" Loimos (Pestilence) adds in his nasally whine.
I pinch the bridge of my nose, feeling a headache coming on.
See what I mean?
"Excuuuse me?!" Loimos snarls.
Whoops, that might have been out loud.
"He called you a dick," Kara repeats cheerfully.
Nightfury and Nanuk nod helpfully.
Taliesin gives a hearty thumbs up.
"Thanks, guys," I deadpan.
"Totes, bro," Nightfury slings an arm around my shoulder.
My brain short-circuits.
Since when does Nightfury talk like a jock and voluntarily touch me without trying to murder me?
Is he trying to murder me??
Ugh, I don't have time for this! I stiffen and prepare to shoot him in the face with my crossbow, but Nightfury's voice hissing in my ear stops me.
"Chill, idiot." His lazy smile stays on his face as he whispers through his teeth. He dips his head so his hat puts his face in shadow and speaks softly so only I can hear him. "I saw that look on your face before Anansi peaced out. You have another whacked-out plan, right?"
My lips curl into my signature smirk.
It's answer enough for Nightfury.
He sighs, and it sounds almost fond.
My smirk gets smirkier, and at normal volume I say, "Aw, you the best, bro," in my best Ken voice.
Then I smack his ass like we're on a football field.
He can't even take advantage of my AGI Curse and stab me in retribution because my underwear will kill him.
HAHAHA BEST DAY.
With an undignified yelp, Nightfury hides behind Kara.
Polemos freezes the attack he'd clearly been preparing, baffled by whatever's happening on our end.
I take advantage of the confusion and unleash my smirk on the Horsemen.
Predictably, Polemos and Loimos raise their hackles in enraged frustration. Limos (Famine) yawns and leans on her wooden stave like it's the only thing keeping her upright.
Thanatos (Death) stares unblinkingly with her all-white eyes.
It's so freaky I actually prefer it when her Stealth beats my Perception and makes her invisible.
I cross my arms and exude my best 'Asshat' persona. "Look who fiiinally finished the Dungeon. Guess we've proven who the better Party is."
"Yeah, right. Says who?" Loimos snaps.
"Says the 1.7 million people who watched the LiveStreams," Taliesin replies, eyes on his Status Window, where he's currently surfing the forums and checking our stream stats.
I have to remind myself to keep playing it cool. That is a huge fucking leap from the numbers this morning!
Clearly, the Horsemen weren't expecting our impromptu LiveStream Race to garner that much attention, either, since even Famine looks almost awake. At least she's blinking slowly instead of closing her eyes entirely.
"And here I thought you guys would give us at least a solid competition." I shake my head in disappointment, as if they didn't clear a Nightmare Mode Dungeon in a single run-through a full 10 minutes faster than the best time recorded in the beta.
"Pathetic." I tack on the insult in a stage-whisper I know will carry across the field.
"Now who's the dick?" Kara actual-whispers at me, fighting back a giggle.
Nanuk looks both impressed at my dick-ish-ness and a bit ill with concern that we're all definitely going to die now.
"You have no AGI, you moron!" he hisses under his breath.
Obviously, I ignore him.
I need all my faculties to focus on the batshit crazy War bastard one second away from attacking me.
"Don't you dare underestimate me!" Polemos shouts, waving his spear menacingly.
I curl my lip and raise my chin, so I'm looking down my nose at him, like he's dogshit beneath my shoe. "You're so far beneath me, it is impossible to under-estimate you."
Taliesin whistles, impressed by my new levels of douchebaggery.
(I may or may not have stolen that comeback from a manga and have been waiting my entire life to use it.)
Lightning-quick, Polemos' spear comes hurtling at my face, shrouded in flames. I activate my 3-second Invincibility Inferno Shield just in time to block the explosive attack.
Flames engulf me and a huge crater opens around my feet, showering the field with debris.
And then the attack ends, the spear falls uselessly to the ground, and I'm left perfectly unscathed. Not even a fleck of dirt mars my black armor.
Polemos is physically shaking with rage.
Nightfury shoots him a sympathetic look. "He does that. Infuriating, right?" He shrugs. "You get used to it."
I flick the spear away with the toe of my boot.
(Polemos is still in "Combat," so I can't steal his weapon. The game protects people's weapons so you can't just lose them any time you get disarmed mid-fight. Pity.)
I stretch my wings wide and draw Zen. Zen's Skills immediately appear in the lower left of my vision, and like I'd calculated, Smite is officially off Cooldown.
My expression is cold, dispassionate. My right eye is silver-white to match Zen, and my tattoos writhe across the left side of my face.
I raise my right arm high to begin the Sword Skill's motion, and the giant white Holy Sword appears in the sky directly above Polemos.
"Stop," Thanatos demands.
Death's stark command halts my arm, but I don't cancel the Skill. +3000 Damage to War, +1500 to the others, instant Party Wipe.
I leave the sword literally hanging above their heads.
An icy smirk breaks across my face.
Perfect time to begin the negotiations.