Spring came early to Vargsangen

The Dryad wakes slowly like a flowers petals opening. When her eyes open she suddenly becomes aware of the temperature. It’s too cold, it’s too dark, she shouldn’t be awake yet. Being bound to the cycle of nature and the Seasons, she shouldn’t awake until Spring when the first green shoots appear. Something is wrong, she must find out what’s going on. Sticking her head out of the entrance to her underground sanctuary, she looks around to see white everywhere.

She finds some boots to protect her feet, usually she’d be barefoot but dare not walk on the freezing snow, frost is as dangerous to her as it is to plants. As she walks through the Human settlement she sees green grass poking through the snow, this is what’s woken her but how?

There’s no sign of industry that she’d heard of further south that made the climate warmer, just the usual primitive wooden homes. She visits a few of the buildings to see if there was anything amiss but found nothing unusual.

They have ships in the harbour so perhaps they have brought something here, or learnt of something that’s causing the problem.

Then she glances up and sees the temple up on the mountain, perhaps that has the answers.

She wishes she’d brought a cloak as she begins the ascent, touching the trees on the way up for reassurance, they are still slumbering as she should be.

Inside the temple she finds evidence of rituals and sacrifice, but these are not the usual practices of worshiping nature and beings such as herself, as could be found at the stones further down the mountain.

The locals still worship her kin it seems

These were darker works, the fools had evidently heard of crops being raised artificially out of season to the South and thought this was how it was done. 

Inside the temple

With her bow she knock everything off the Altar in anger at their foolishness. Picking up a collection of scrolls featuring illustrations similar to the altar goods she glances at them in surprise. These are old, so very old but she recognised them. The fae races had worked hard to destroy all copies of this arcane knowledge, in order to preserve the balance of nature. She knows what she must do.

Waiting at the doorway of the temple, to get some warmth from their fires, she is impatient until dawn. She was going to need all the help from nature she could get for what she had in mind. As the sun rises she takes a bud from the vines encirling her body and places it into a shallow hole she was able to make in the frozen earth with the end of her bow. Standing back she raises her arms and chants quietly calling on the dormant natural world around her.

Directing the energy into the barely buried bud she encourages it to grow and expand until the building is encased in leaves, the shoots running up between the stones of the building like roots through foundations of a house and pries them apart.

It takes time and a lot of effort but eventually the roots demolish the building entirely into rubble. The shoots recede and combine into a single living thing…a blossoming tree. They wanted out-of-season plants, this is what they shall get.

Exhausted and barely able to stand she returns to the forest to hibernate until Spring actually comes.

When I had been told by Camilla Runo the builder of Vargsangen that it had returned I was excited and just had to go explore! I thought I would wear something warm and furry like my previous post. But once I collect this New Year’s special skin from Fallen Gods that completely changed, a Dryad post was in order. I had earlier been out for a walk (in the odd world of Real Life) and I saw daffodils sprouting, which doesn’t usually happen for another couple of months and that gave me an idea, to which I added a fantasy twist.

The build is expected to close at the end of January 2022 so get over and check it out. Here’s a few extra snaps that didn’t fit into the story:

Arrival point: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Party%20Wave/24/54/22

Outfit Credits:

Roleplay: The Bad News

Following on from my previous post, Awakening bridging the RL time gap between Hellas Planitia closing and World of Helix (post coming soon!) opening to the public.

Ava awakes to a beeping sound, a priority message has been received and she’s been woken up. Groggily she taps the flashing envelope icon and reads with growing shock.

---Message Start---

From AMZ Outreach Office:

Ms Delaney

I'm sorry to have to break this news to you, but based on the beacon of your capsule and the signal of drone 116s transponder, you're no longer near Mars. It would appear that at the time of this message transmission,you are headed for the planet Ithemba. You may even have arrived by the time you receive this.

We have contacted Helix Corp and informed them of the situation. Helix Corp representatives should not hinder you, provided they have received their correspondencece, but are under no obligation to assist you. Any assistance you get from them will depend on what you can negotiate in situ.

Given this turn of events we are sending a droid-piloted shuttle instead of the requested drone. This will contain a number of drones and related equipment and supplies that will allow you to operate localised services.

--Message Ends--

Ava reads the message a second then third time and sighs “Damnit” she mutters. At that moment she’s lurched to one side, she sees the crate above move slightly but doesn’t fall,. The ship was manoeuvring, apparently descending by the feel of things. It seems they have arrived.

Roleplay: Awakening

Ava wakes in darkness. Reaching forward her hand hits the inside of the capsule and the control panel lights up in front of her. She activates the exterior cameras to see where she ended up..Wall, crate,slightly further away wall..and a purple detailed hover bike that can only belong to her friend Vic! She’s in the right ship at least. She mentally catalogs her gear of use. If Vic is on board, tools will be more useful than weapons to her so Ava snags the compact kit that’s standard issue in the capsule along with her weapons; 2 company-issue handguns with spare clips and a tazer, not fatal to a human but in Vics hands very Terminal to bots.

She presses the hatch release of the capsule, there’s a hiss of seals then a clunk and nothing happens. She looks straight up out the capsules window and sighs, the goons have stacked a heavy crate on top of her. Looks like she might need to call the office. She reluctantly activates the capsule emergency beacon then brings up the communications menu on the control panel and starts preparing her report for Head Office.

To AMZ Outreach Office
Situation Report:The resident community in the Hellas Planitia crater have been rounded up by what appeared to be Helix Corp employees. To prevent abduction I secured myself in my NukeSafe capsule, which they appear to have  loaded onto their ship, presumably unaware I was inside. Destination is unknown but likely another Mars location.I have attached the transponder for drone 116 to the transport ship, so AMZ will get the location of the new Helix Corp office, just in case my capsule is offloaded elsewhere.
AMZ lawyers should contact Helix Corp make them aware they are illegally carryig one of our employees. Maybe also remind them that trying to force open my capsule could have fatal consequences for their employees.

Requisition Order:

Prepare a shiping drone containing the following items and send it on it's way towards Mars ASAP, exact destination co-ordinates to follow.

Drone Control terminal & Workstation
Refresh pack for NukeSafe (power cells, all gas canisters)
Signage pack for new location office
Ammo packs for standard issue side arm
Fill any remaining space with cigarettes in reseller packs (A rare commodity,last shipment presumed lost at Hellas crater)

Message Ends

Ava transmits the report and reactivates stasis mode, all too aware of the time it may take the message to arrive, depending on current location and rotation of plantets. Hopefully there’s an AMZ drone or company craft nearby that will relay the emergency beacon signal faster.

Roleplay: The Roundup

OOC Background: The Hellas Planitia RP location I’ve written about previously has closed and the players are moving to a new place. The new location is being created by former Owners of the Helix City Cyberpunk roleplay, so it’s kinda full circle for the crater residents. This post tells the beginning of Ava’s IC part in the relocation story.

Ava is sitting in her office below the landing pad when she hears the sound of engines of a craft approaching. She brings up the feed from the landing area cameras and sees a personnel transport ship with Helix Corp logos on. They’ve not sent anyone here for a long time, this cannot be good.

A squad of armed personnel for which the best description would be “grunts” emerge from the ship and make their way to the open gates. As they enter the town a second ship arrives, this one more like a prisoner transport that lands right outside the gates. Defiantly not a good thing. Looking around at what weapons she had to hand, tackling them all herself really wasn’t an option; she’s a courier, a weapons courier, but still just that. Thinking fast she goes to one of her shipping drones. She opens the maintenance hatch and removes its tracking transponder and attaches it to part of the landing gear of the prison transport ship, all the grunts are at the other side of the ship facing the towns entrance.

Gathering up her company issue weapons and a few other useful items, putting them in the Nuke-Safe survival capsule, she had been provided with all that time ago when she first came to Mars. Dragging the capsule outside to where it will be seen by the thugs, she climbs in and shuts the hatch, hoping the grunts will be greedy enough to load her capsule into the ship with any other plunder they may take.

She activates the small exterior cameras on the capsule to see what’s going on. Her view isn’t great from this position, but she can see the residents of the crater being herded by force into the transport ship. Will they load her capsule in with the prisoners as loot among other valuable tech some seem to have gone back for? One of them seems to have spotted her capsule so she closes the shutter to prevent them from seeing inside an turns off the exterior status displays. Finally she activates the stasis function, setting it to wake her silently in 72 hours.

Pre-opening post about the new Helix Corp location coming soon!

Roleplay: The Pilot

Following Ava’s fairly unfruitful visit to the Armoury and conversation with a potential first customer on the way, hopefully a meeting with the pilot mentioned will be productive.

[08:15:12] Ava wanders around the various parked up ships looking for the one she'd been told about

[08:16:02] Ava stops short as she sees someone sat in the shelter of a ship "Hello there"

[08:16:03] Szondi raises an eyebrow noticing the newcoming , but then concentrates again on her computer

[08:16:56] Szondi looks at the newcoming '' hello ''

[08:17:35] Ava steps a little closer "Hi, I'm looking for a pilot called Szondi, wouldn't happen to be you by an chance?"

[08:19:12] Szondi half nods '' so tell the legends...how may i help you ? ''

[08:21:40] Ava : My name is Ava, I work for AMZ, yo probably noticed the big yellow crate over there by now. I've been sent back to this dust pit to set up and negotiate shipping deals with whoever needs them.

[08:22:02] Szondi closes the computer and places it on ground , near the chair '' you can come closer i don't bite , yet ''

[08:23:09] Szondi : do you want i deliver your stuff?

[08:23:35] Ava steps closer, just under the canopy "I was talking to the chick in the Armoury she was pretty unhelpful, saying she had her own stuff worked out, bus suggested I come talk to you"

[08:24:21] Ava nods "Yes, I was thinking something like that yes, sub-contract as it were"

[08:24:55] Szondi frowns and meditates...'' legal stuff , i suppose....dont wanna troubles , you know ''

[08:27:26] Ava : I expect so yes, but AMZ does have a policy of not opening any packages we're asked to ship, best for all parties concerned. Which of course if *you* stick to that, it passes the buck to AMZ for the contents.

[08:28:37] Szondi : that AMZ covers responsabilities ? any sort of legal assurance ?

08:32:00] Ava : The rules are very..undefined..out here. AMZ uses that to it's advantage, adopting that policy and using our crates passes the responsibility to AMZ, yes. The parent company on Earth is too big to be messed with. Works for everyones advantage.

[08:33:21] Szondi : hmmmmm * nods and smiles for awhile , meditating * sounds interesting , yes....tell me more , please

[08:41:35] Ava : Well right now I'm trying to get a feel of who wants what shipped, AMZ were hoping to get contracts with thor and earthgov

[08:42:06] Ava : so far that's not lookng so promising

[08:42:45] Szondi : i don't wotk to Thor ...mainly , but before continuing there are some things you had to know...

[08:43:22] Ava nods "ok, lets hear it"

[08:44:16] Szondi stands up and makes a sign to Ava , indicating to follow '' ok , come aboard please

[08:45:20] Szondi : you can see this is not a freighter , i mainly transport passengers...

[08:46:24] Szondi : people who wants a fast , safe and discrete trip to their destination...with no questions...

[08:46:55] Szondi : i can carry only 2 tons of merchandise...

[08:49:37] Ava /me nods looking at the vessel "Well that's fine, I find it's often the smallest packages that pay the highest prices anyway. The limitation works in your favour too, scarcity raises prices"

[08:51:20] Szondi : maybe but not in Mars....a journey to Gagaringrad and back costs me 1500 C-bills , so i need to recover that amount and get some profit...

[08:57:57] Ava : I think we''d have to negotiate that on a load by load basis. 1 pound is not a lot for that price. We'd be talking likely very dubious contents. But as I said, you'r covered by AMZ for that.

[08:59:47] Szondi : i don't ask what boxes have in , just need a cover if gov officers inquire about...i'm not a smuggler...

[09:05:35] Ava : Well I'm not asking you to be a smuggler, AMZ is a legit shipping company. I'm not sure on exactly what loopholes AMZ have jumped through, but you don't have to worry about the officials. They can't open the boxes, that's the beauty of it. I can't, you can't. Only the sender and the intended final recipient with a biometric lock.

At which point the strange world that is RealLife required my attenion, so I look forward to continuing this story sometime soon.

Outfit Credits

Roleplay: Potential First Customer

On her way to find the pilot mentioned by the Armoury proprietor Ava comes across a potential customer outside the Thor Mining Corp offices.

[07:40:52]  Cyka looks over to the woman in front of her appearing obviously grouchy as she nods briefly. "Hi... You wouldn't happen to have some smokes on you by chance...?"

[07:43:27] Ava shakes her head "No sorry, never picked up that habit. I'm Ava, a courier for AMZ, they've sent me to try and set up shipping deals with whoever wants or neds them."

[07:44:18]  Cyka cocks her brow some and just sighs "Any chance you can procure cigs. or different kind of courier?" she asks obviously going through nicotine withdrawal if Ava had ever seen it before.

[07:47:34] Ava: I'm sure I would work something out, get some on a shipment this way, but obviously would have to be among other stuff. The Armoury chick wasn't too cooperative and not been able to make contact with anyone from Thor or EarthGov yet.


[07:48:41]  Cyka nods lightly "Thor mostly keeps to themselves.. and i would suggest not trusting the earth gov people are far as you could throw them" she states flatly. "but if you can get me a few cartons of cigs i will pay you cost and a half for them. "

[07:52:08] Ava laughs "Trust? No, any large organisation, corporate or government shouldn't be trusted. You just gotta use their language though, cash. I don't care if they're trustworthy, so long as they pay upfront"

[08:01:07] Ava: Well I shall keep you in mind your offer as I fish around for customers, a shipload just full of cigarettes might not be all that profitable..but we shall see.


[08:03:15]  Cyka shrugs "Im a street sam. working for the towns mayor. All i need are cigs and booze. and I'm offering a 50% over cost at base. more if in bulk.. so just keep that in mind.. its a comodity out here"

[08:05:00] Ava: I certainly will. Gotta go with market demand, if that's fags n booze, so be it.

[08:05:52]  Cyka chuckles "i dont know about market demand. but if nothing else. you will have a steady reavenue if you help me out.. and i can help deal with any one who might fuck with your routes. " she says with a chilling smirk

[08:07:22] Ava nods in completely understanding the womans' last comments "Definitely a consideration"

[08:09:36]  Cyka shrugs lightly before yawning "Any ways, names Cyka, i work dirrectly for Jadz as her security detail. if you need some help let me know. Will owe ya a favor if you manage to get those cigs. and.. some say a favor is as good as gold" she says lightly reaching to her pocket only to remember her pack of cigs has long since been filled with this horrid places dust just sighing in irritation

[08:11:00] Ava: Thanks Cyka, I look forward to working with you, I've gotta go head over and talk to a pilot that the armory chick told me about.

[08:13:02] Ava raises her hand in a farewell wave and heads off
Outfit Credits:

AMZ Roleplay Character Refresh and Update

Since my return to the Hellas Mars crater Sci-Fi roleplay coincided with the opening of the CyberFair event this month I thought it was time I gave Ava’s AMZ characters appearance a bit of an overhaul, along with some embellishments and extra details to her story.

The Story so far:

Ava is a courier for AMZ (All Mars Zone) that ship pretty much anything anywhere. She was sent to Mars originally to deliver a particular dangerous package (given that she was sent with a personal bomb shelter capsule), to the Martian city of Helix. The delivery wasn’t originally made because the city was evacuated. Later she met the local courier that she was supposed to give it to on Mars, but not the final recipient, so she was stuck on Mars with a useless dangerous crate and a portable bomb shelter.

After some time spent with the refugees of Helix she was recalled to Earth by the company. When she explained the situation on Mars and the surprising growth of the crater community to her employers, they sent her back. Her instructions were to establish an office there and negotiate shipping contracts with whoever or whatever organisations or entities required them.

The resulting “Office” being a very loose term for a storage crate painted in company colours and signage placed under the shuttle landing pad.

AMZ are now using unmanned drone ships for the long haul to Mars, controlled by an AMZ employee for take-off and landing, or if the there is problem such as the pod deviating from its set course. The company’s focus is customer privacy, confidentiality and shipment security. To this end the drones cargo compartment can only be opened by AMZ employees with biometric authentication. Additionally customers can ship goods in AMZ crates with similar protections, so only the intended final recipient can open it.

More roleplay stories coming soon!

Outfit Credits

Roleplay: The Hellas Armory

My recent return to Hellas crater to tell you of it’s rebuild has got me back into mind of Roleplaying there again. So I’m reviving my AMZ courier storyline.

Recap: Ava is a courier for AMZ (All Mars Zone) that ship pretty much anything anywhere. She was sent to Mars originally to deliver a particularly dangerous package to the Martian city of Helix. After some time spent with the refugees of Helix she was recalled to Earth by the company. She’s now been sent back to Mars to establish an office there and negotiate shipping contracts with whoever or whatever organisations or entities required them.

Thinking that the Armoury might be a good start for places that will need regular supplies, Ava pays the proprietor a visit.

After some time chatting over a drink, it becomes quite evident that the proprietor isn’t interested in the services AMZ has to offer and Ava politely leaves. It hasn’t been an entirely wasted visit however, Ava now has the name of a local pilot that might be useful for transporting goods across the planet.

RP Log:

[06:53:25] Ixela: hello missus , may i help you ?....problems with your weapon ?

[06:55:46] Ava smiles "nope, just came to check the place out and see what you might be short on. I courier weapons and my employer is wanting to expand here, potentially supply you"

[06:57:51] Ixela meditates for awhile and nods '' can he supply me for Astra-Llama sub-machineguns ? Minolta-Dragunov rifles ? Mauser&Gray pistols ?


[06:58:03] Ava : All Mars Zone shipping  is looking to take an interest here, with regular shipments to and from Earth. Main client would probably be the mining co, but doesn't mean there's not room for stuff you might need on those ships

[06:58:57] Ixela: shipments from Earth are late and expensive , my common customers can't afford it on their repairs


[07:01:28] Ava : Shipments are expensive because of infrequency, more there are, the cheaper they become. But what I'm talking about is adding your stuff onto shipments mostly paid for by the corpos, to make the most of each voyage.


[07:06:32] Ixela: hnmmmm* grumbles , then frowns and stares the woman , then smiles * thanks for your offer , missus , but i already have a provider in Gagaringrad....here i can get second hand pieces and supplies


[07:13:05] Ava shrugs "Ok, well I hope that works for you. My bosses want to try and set something up here, but hopefully we won't get in each others way.


[07:13:09] Ixela looks inside the workshop and makes a signal to the woman , '' weh! come and tell me about these shipments ''

[07:14:07] Ava follows the woman inside

[07:14:12] Ixela shows the table '' take a seat , please ''

[07:14:57] Ixela offers a coffee cup to the woman

[07:17:34] Ixela: now , tell me about these shipments...


[07:18:50] Ava : okay, it'll be easiest if I start at the beginning...

[07:19:01] Ixela: please...

[07:21:15] Ava : A while back before the city of Helix was evacuated, I was sent to escort a very dangerous shipment. Nasty enough that they sent me with an emergency shelter capsule. I never made the delivery before the city was evacuated, the recopient go between neer showed.
A few months later, I came across the courier, or rather my implant here *taps her eye augment* spotted her. She confirmed she was meant to have collected it, but didn't know the final recipient.

[07:22:56] Ixela nods , listening carefully

[07:23:08] Ava : So I've been stuck on Mars with a dangerous shipment and no client.

[07:23:56] Ixela nods meditating...'' a weapons and ammo shipment ? ''

[07:24:07] Ava : Til recently I was called back and they decided they want to start something here, a branch office or something, with the presence of a corp here, it's likely htey'll get plenty of business

[07:25:03] Ixela: on who are you meaning when say ''they'' ...the army ?

[07:25:56] Ava : They, as in AMZ shipping

[07:26:37] Ava steps out for a moment an comes back with a small box and puts it on the table

[07:27:01] Ava : this cursed thing is what I've been lugging around

[07:27:05] Ixela: these are private deliveries ?

[07:28:34] Ava : a mix, this one was evidently for some with far too much money in the city.

[07:29:17] Ava : and evidently intending to have a negative impact on the population, or some of them at least

[07:29:50] Ixela: hahahahaha...then don't look at me , i won't be prosecuted for buying stolen materials....

[07:31:30] Ava : Dont worry, this isn't for sale

[07:31:40] Ava : even I can't open it

[07:32:05] Ava : only the intended recipient can, with a palm scan

[07:32:38] Ixela: anyway , i dont want troubles , i have my providers ....maybe not the best quality stuff , but all legal...there are government officers here.....

[07:34:02] Ava : Oh I wasn't suggesting anything illegal, AMZ is a respectable business, dealing in private and commercial shipments, the contents aren't our concern.

[07:34:13] Ixela: i don't care on the crate size but in the contents , and if it has a former owner

[07:36:48] Ava : by which you mean, you want new? Or don't want new?

[07:36:52] Ixela: i have no room for such storage ...why do you ask me ?

[07:42:51] Ava : I'm just offering another shipment route that might have benefited you in some way. But if you're all covered, that's no problem. I'll be negotiating with Thor and EarthGov anyway, so no loss on my end.

[07:43:03] Ixela: as i said , my customers can't afford new supplies on their weapon's repair...i don't work with Thor mining....my customers are private persons...

[07:44:48] Ava : So I gathered, just thought another courier might be useful, you'd be paying cheaper personal rates for your items.

[07:45:45] Ixela: i know someone who makes private transportings

[07:50:36] Ava shrugs "well in that case I think we're done here. Thanks for the drink" puts down her cup and stands

[07:51:20] Ixela smiles '' as you wish...don't want to ask the person i mentioned ?''

[07:52:23] Ava : Perhaps it would be useful to know all the players in the market yes.

[07:52:54] Ixela: but first i must ask you something...are you human ?

[07:55:34] Ava : Yes. I would have thought that was obvious, but I guess all you can see is neck up and an implant it's a fair question.

[07:56:24] Ava : It's just an implant, rest of me is human

[07:56:38] Ixela: some cyborgs are undistinguishable from humans lately...and that person hates cyborgs , droids , sinths and nearly any non-human

[07:57:25] Ixela: i guess she has good reasons to act this way...

[07:57:28] Ixela: ok

[07:57:37] Ava nods "many do feel that way"

[07:58:06] Ixela: go to the port , entering on the pistes , in the right side , box 2...here she places her hoverboat

[07:58:41] Ixela: she's more daring than me

[08:00:05] Ava : Okay, thankyou, who shall I say sent me to her?

[08:00:51] Ixela: as you wish....guess she has no protocol....

[08:01:08] Ava nods

[08:01:21] Ixela: her name is Szondi

Outfit Credits:

A look back at My 2020 in SecondLife

While we may not all want to look back at 2020 in the Real World, doing so for my Second Life isn’t half as depressing.

Looking at my previous posts over the last year I was actually busier than I thought. I did quite a bit of RP in SL Gor during first few months of  the year tracking down old friends,

Pondering what adventures are to come with my return to Gor

before moving on to a Prison RP  which had me chasing escapees for a few weeks.

I caught up with one of the escapees in a bar

 

Then along came Fantasy Faire,where this year I was able to have early access the empty lands before the masses arrived.

Empty streets of Fantasy Faire

This was through my involvement with the NeoVictoria Project as opposed to the FF Bloggers (since I didn’t make the official list,maybe next year!)

This gave me a new perspective on the Faire that I wrote about. I also wrote two short stories  based around the Faire as part of their “Faire Folk” challenge, called Under the Pass and Casseopeia. How could anyone not be inspired by the Faire?

I next moved onto a different more futuristic RP, a cyberpunk location inspired by the city of Helix.

The city didn’t survive the RL lockdown,but it has led to a small but thriving group,making a life for themselves in a dusty Martian crater.

Bits of ruined machinery in the dusty crater

Halloween came around fast and all the spooky places sprung up for October and I had great fun blogging some of them.

Shortly before the *actual* date of Halloween arrived I was at a club called Ohana that I’d visited several times in the past and they mentioned Hosting vacancies,so I applied and was taken on after a trial set that went great.

Debut Set at Ohana Rock Club, 19th October

Finally in December I decided I’d try to go along to the SL Book Club readings. I’d seen the Twitter activity about it weekly (who could miss Draxtors enthusiasm?)but never actually got around to attending. I went along two and a half hours early,just intending to have a look and take a Landmark.

I realised I’d unwittingly taken myself hostage,the place was already half full and if I’d left,getting back in wasn’t guarunteed. Fortunately I’d already done my whip around of Christmas advent calendar clicking that day!

Already half-full hours early!

Which pretty much brings this year of Second Life adventures to a close.

However..

I’ve explored more places than I got around to blogging about, so I’ve lots of photos of places that deserve long posts of their own. Maybe I’ll write those next year if the locations are still there in the New Year.

For now I’ve simply made small galleries of some of the different places I didn’t feature on the blog, as well as some one-off snaps,in chronological order:

A storytelling evening at NeoVictoria (3rd January)

Furry Night at Kitty Kaboom (23rd January)

Bikini party at Kitty Kaboom,from PG angle. (13th February)

Hayo as a Tarn (18th May)

Tarns are large birds,ridden by some warriors in the fictional world of Gor.

Sci-Fi Con 2020 (21st May)

 

Ash Falls (15th July)

Murder City (21st July)

SecondLife 17th Birthday explorations via train (24th July)

Pandemonium (7th August)

Delerium (12 August)

 

Tea with Sheree (15th September)

Hayo preparing for Halloween (4th October)

 

Jeep Antics with Sheree and Hayo (11th October)

NeoVictoria 10th Anniversary Roleplays (22-24th November)

 

Boggying with Nyte after my set at Ohana (19th December)

Boogying with Nyte at Ohana

 

SecondLife Book Club (16+23rd December)

This post was featured on the SecondLife Community Blog on 28th December 2020.

Rise and Fall

A friend read through my Gor Story in one sitting, quite a feat I thought given it’s length. When they finished their response was:

“Nicely done. But what are you doing now?”

Well to answer that I’ll have to talk about what happened in-between,since (at the time of writing, April 2019) it has been roughly 9 months since my final rp in SL Gor.

After leaving Gor I went back to Ava’s roots in SL, Bloodlines. Please those that roll your eyes and groan about bloodlines, do read on there’s a moral to this story.
I had been in a Bloodlines family called The Rainbow Princesses (name changed to protect the innocent and guilty alike) for a few years,but not particularly active in it. My SL time had mostly been taken up with my Gor rp. I decided it was time to take a more active role. So I started hanging out at the family sim regions a bit and being more active in the group chat. I’d been away for quite a while so there were lots of new people I didn’t know that I gradually got to know.

I had often not attended the weekly clan parties because of a schedule clash, but that had also changed so I started attending regularly. However these events had begun to become less frequent due to staff shortage and lack of attendance. I felt I wanted to help, so I enquired about hosing at one of the parties, for which I was accepted.
That was a great night,though I was a little nervous, I was alongside a great DJ (who is still a dear friend today) and it was a lot of fun. I only actually ever got to host one other set the whole time I was there. Any offers to host or organise extra events, bring in another DJ were met with a prompt “no”, as if the club manager actually wanted the place to fail.
At some point I heard of a promotion of a member of the group to the rank of Knight,which surprised me.
I knew this person was a new arrival to the clan,actually recalling their arrival. I thought “aren’t these higher ranks for long-standing family members”? It seemed not. So I decided that was what I wanted to achieve. I figured if they could do it,so could I. However I’d have to do it on real merits rather than friends,since I’d already managed to offend a well-liked member of the royalty more than once.
So I set myself the goal to become Knight by Christmas,New Year at the latest.
As well as hosting at the club I began to run regular help with certain Bloodlines Achievements. These are tasks you do using the game’s hud and vary considerably in difficulty. These were well attended to begin with, though I ended up having to space them out to suit people better. I also jointly did an Achievement challenge with one of the other family members. This is where things started to get trickier.

Shortly after that event the other person got promoted, I did not. I was not amused. This may sound childish to some, but not to others including my Leige at the time. They said my reaction was understandable,considering how hard I’d been working in the family. I was told the Council had actually voted to promote me at the same time as well.
When I eventually had my interview for the promotion to Knight which came after a considerably longer time than any apart the King & Queen felt reasonable, I mentioned this. They did take the view of it being childish,also claiming that they didn’t like to promote many people at the same time. In this case that would have been Two. While rummaging for notes to help me write this account I found a Group Notice announcement of Three people at once and reference to preferring to promote in groups,contrary to what I was told. So clearly despite words to the contrary, it’s definitely a popularity contest.

I’m not good at popular. I speak my mind too much for many people’s liking.
So on 13th November 2018 after my interview I was made Knight Prospect. Knight privileges but on a trial basis This could be a month or more, dependent on the whim of the King as I understood it. Mine did run into the “more” timeframe. However since then I’ve had people say that they’d never heard of interviews being held, or extended trial periods within that family.

Apparently things had been stacked against me from the start. The saying about grass being greener on the other side,definitely applies here.

The role of Knight is indeed a priveledge, the trust of all security related permissions covering multiple SL regions is not something to be taken lightly.

However the role can be dressed up and made to sound more prestigious, but you are basically a glorified greeter/security guard for the family land.
I had always felt proud to be in this particular family, but things often look better from a distance. Getting glimpses of the inner workings of things aren’t always a pretty sight.
I spent some months as Knight Prospect gradually becoming more disillusioned as time passed.

In the end it was a simple unnecessary comment that was the last straw and prompted my departure. I’d just had enough of the little comments and attitude from single person.
It hurt me greatly,but it was time to move on. So in February 2019 I used the bloodlines hud to create my own little “family” for a while and then briefly spent some time at a former leige’s clan before I joined the family of another ex-member of the Rainbow Princesses. Where I’m pleased to say I’m happy again.
So to answer the original question of what I’m doing now:
Now I am much happier member of the Twist of Fate family. Who are considerably more active in many ways.
Moral of the story for me: don’t pursue a goal for a goals sake.

For those readers that reacted “ugh,bloodlines”, maybe you can see that families/clans are just like any other social group in SL or elsewhere. They’re a mixture of fun, friendship and also unfortunately drama. We just have to find somewhere with the right balance for each of us.

Updated March 2021:

Twist of Fate was a lot of fun. I helped a lot of people there gain some tricky Achievements (Bloodlines merit badges) which I enjoyed for a while, because I like to help people. Then sadly (in my opinion) in March 2020 we merged with a much larger family. There were good (RL & SL) reasons for the merger, which I understand and accept. But to me it felt more like being swallowed up than merged.

Update December 2021

Twist of Fate is back on its own, out of the large family and back as a small group once again, which is great.

So some fresh faces to get to know since some others emigrated with us. Which means I’m back to doing my bit by running achievements again when people need my help.