Alabaster — 96 of 123

John Cater, Rob Dubbin, Eric Eve, Elizabeth Heller, Jayzee, Kazuki Mishima, Sarah Morayati, Mark Musante, Emily Short, Adam Thornton, and Ziv Wities

Release 1

Section 3 - Lead in to Adam and Eve

am-I-beautiful is a q-transitional NPC-directed quip.

The response is "She cocks her head coquettishly. 'Do you find me beautiful?'".

It quip-supplies Snow White.

Before discussing something which does not directly-follow am-I-beautiful when the previous quip is am-I-beautiful: [1]

say "You ignore the provocation. [run paragraph on]";

no-17 is a negative quip. The printed name is "say no". The true-name is "no-17". The comment is "'Better for a man like me to admire what is closer to his own kind,' you say finally. She [italic type]is[roman type] beautiful, but there are as many perils in saying so as in denying it.".

Understand "[maybe]" or "be evasive" or "avoid/evade her" or "avoid/evade answering" as no-17.

It mentions Snow White's skin.

The response is "Her eyes flash[set body-context to Snow White][angry]. 'Yes, keep to your own flesh. [eve-named]Eve from [adam-named]Adam's rib: much less frightening.'".

It is negated by snow-white-possessed. [see no-38]

It directly-follows am-I-beautiful.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

Does the player mean discussing why she mentions Adam:

it is very likely. [2]

why she mentions Adam is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Why [if immediately]do[otherwise]did[end if] you mention Adam?'".

It mentions Adam.

The response is "'All men are like Adam.' She looks you over, then adds, '...though some less than others.'".

It assumes adam-named.

It is negated by misses-adam.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

Does the player mean discussing why she mentions Eve:

it is very likely. [3]

why she mentions Eve is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Why [if immediately]do[otherwise]did[end if] you mention Eve?'".

It mentions Eve.

The response is "She turns restlessly. From the lantern, her shadow falls against the tree. For a moment you might almost fancy that the shadow had[winged-shadow] wings[scary]. [paragraph break]'I have always despised Eve,' she remarks. '[italic type]I[roman type] would have known what the snake was up to.'".

It assumes eve-named.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

why her shadow hath wings is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "why her shadow has wings". The true-name is "why her shadow hath wings".

Understand "has" as why her shadow hath wings. The comment is "'Your shadow has wings,' you observe[if immediately], as calmly as you are able[end if].".

It mentions shadows, wings.

The response is "'If you had eyes to see, you would need neither shadows nor reflections.' Nonetheless, her dress lies flat over her shoulder-blades, and you have never seen her fly.".

It is negated by snow-white-possessed.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It assumes winged-shadow.

what she knows of the snake is a questioning quip. The comment is "'[if immediately]You have an[otherwise]You say you would have known what the snake was up to: do you have[end if] intimate knowledge of tempters and demons?' ".

It mentions snake, demons.

The response is "'More simply, I am not such a fool.' [for breath-gest]Her jaw tightens. [or eye-gest]She glares at you as though you were someone else, someone who disappointed and angered her in the past.[or walk-gest]She a few long, unlady-like strides as though her angry energy could be paced away. [end for] 'What a different race we could have made, [adam-named]Adam and I. Not so subservient, not so ignorant. Not so desperate always to be told what to do. [eve-named]Eve's children needed laws written on a tablet, and kings appointed to them, and scriptures, because they did not [italic type]dare[roman type] to be wise on their own.'".

It indirectly-follows why she mentions eve.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

yes-16 is an affirmative quip. The printed name is "say yes". The true-name is "yes-16". The comment is "'You must know that you are beautiful. No man would think otherwise.'".

It mentions Snow White's skin.

The response is "[if the player knows snow-white-possessed]'You might be surprised,' she says. 'Some men see no beauty in what they cannot control.'[otherwise]She blinks quickly and turns away.[end if]".

It directly-follows am-I-beautiful.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

whether her teeth seem normal is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "whether her teeth are normal". The true-name is "whether her teeth seem normal".

Understand "are" as whether her teeth seem normal. The comment is "'Show me your teeth,' you say.".

It mentions Snow White's teeth.

The response is "[if the player knows snow-white-possessed]She opens her mouth so that you can see the sharp even white teeth. 'They are ordinary enough,' she says. 'As you see.'[otherwise]She turns on you and bares her teeth. They are sharp and white and even, but they are not inhuman. Not exactly[conditionally queue am-I-beautiful].[end if]".

It quip-supplies Snow White.

why her hair seems so shiny is a weak questioning quip.

The printed name is "why her hair is so shiny". The true-name is "why her hair seems so shiny".

Understand "is" as why her hair seems so shiny. The comment is "'Why is your hair so shiny?'".

It mentions Snow White's hair.

The response is "'[if the player knows snow-white-possessed]Luck[conditionally queue am-I-beautiful][otherwise]This? It is mostly the princess[']; my hair was longer once[end if].'".

It quip-supplies Snow White.

An availability rule for whether she seems Lilith:

if the turn count is less than 2:

it is off-limits;

if the player knows lilith-named:

it is off-limits;

if the player's command does not include "Lilith":

it is off-limits.

A plausibility rule for whether she seems Lilith:

it is implausible.

whether she seems Lilith is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "whether she is Lilith". The true-name is "whether she seems Lilith".

Understand "is" or "if" or "snow white" as whether she seems Lilith. The comment is "'Lilith.' The name is old, old, a legend of a legend, centuries dead, and yet you know it. 'You are Lilith.'".

It mentions Lilith.

The response is "Her eyes[set body-context to Snow White] meet yours. 'Trapped inside this naive little virgin, for the moment. Yes. Sometimes she speaks; sometimes I speak for her. I suffer and she whines. I remember and she fears. She is a daughter of [eve-named]Eve, to be sure[snow-white-possessed].' [paragraph break]She backs herself to where she can lean against a tree trunk, as though very tired. 'I did not think you would know me, however much I might try to tell you,' she says. 'Men— usually do not choose to recognize me[scary][friendly].'".

It is negated by snow-white-possessed.

It quip-supplies Snow White. [4]

why she hath told me is a weak questioning quip.

The printed name is "why she has told you". The true-name is "why she hath told me".

Understand "has" or "you" as why she hath told me. The comment is "'I am surprised to hear you confess it.'".

It mentions Lilith.

The response is "She shrugs. 'You knew my name. It makes a difference.'".

It directly-follows whether she seems Lilith.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It is listed.

Understand "lilith" as Snow White when the player knows Snow-White-possessed.

what Lilith wants is a questioning quip. The comment is "'What do you— Lilith— want?'".

Understand "she" or "wishes" or "desires" as what Lilith wants.

It mentions Lilith.

The response is "'I kill boy-children[murderous-lilith]: did you know? I suck out their lives and leave them to die. It is punishment for all the children of my own that Adam stole from me, when he cast me out of Eden, when he rejected me and sent me away[scary].'".

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It assumes Snow-White-possessed.

It is listed.

Rule for quip-introducing what Lilith wants again:

say "[roman type][one of]But it[or]It still[stopping] does not seem to you that you have heard what she wants.";

list no other quips.

what Lilith wants again is a questioning quip. The comment is "'[if immediately]But is that what you want[otherwise]Is vengeance your only desire[end if]?'".

Understand "she" or "wishes" or "desires" as what Lilith wants again.

It mentions adam, Lilith.

The response is "She looks up at you and her eyes[set body-context to Snow White] are filled with grief beyond tears. 'I want [italic type]Adam[adam-named][misses-adam][roman type],' she says. 'And he wanted me[queue want-an-equal as postponed obligatory]. When he had [eve-named]Eve, that docile witless blonde, he saw the bargain he had made and he wanted to take it back, and at night it was [italic type]my[roman type] body he dreamed and my name he called. But it was too late. And I was cast out into the storm and the desert and I had no equal on earth.' ".

It indirectly-follows what Lilith wants.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It is listed.

Before discussing something when the current quip is what Lilith wants again:

if the noun does not indirectly-follow what Lilith wants again and the noun does not mention Adam:

say "Out of respect, you give her a moment to collect herself after this outburst[pathetic]. She walks a few steps away from you, out of the circle of the lamplight, to gather her thoughts. When she turns back, she seems calmer and you suppose it safe to speak again.[paragraph break]";

whether that was Eve's fault is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Surely it was not Eve's fault that she was created [if immediately]under such circumstances[otherwise]as a lesser replacement for Lilith[end if].'".

It mentions Eve.

The response is "'Oh, yes, there are many inferior things that creep and crawl on the earth, and it is not [italic type]their fault[roman type] that they should be so. But that does not make them any less inferior in fact.'".

It indirectly-follows what Lilith wants again.

It quip-supplies Snow White

what happened to Adam is a questioning quip. The comment is "[if immediately]'Forgive me, [otherwise]You gather the courage to go back to a difficult subject. 'Forgive me — perhaps I should not return to this — [end if]but surely Adam is long dead.'".

It mentions Adam.

The response is "She bows her head and her dark hair hides her cheek like a curtain of silk. There is a strange, horrible sound, like a wounded animal or the wail of rising wind. It does not come from her mouth: rather, she summoned it out of the woods. But it is no less a scream of grief for all that[pathetic]. [paragraph break]'Yes, he is dead,' she says. 'For he was made mortal, but I was not. That was his punishment and also mine. God —' She says the name in syllables you have not heard before but you know whose name it is— 'God is very efficient in his methods. [paragraph break]'But to what purpose did he make [italic type]me[roman type]? I have been a plague to men for generations, and for generations a giver of dangerous gifts. That is how the Queen knew me, and how she used me[queen-invoked-lilith]: merely a demon, a power for her witchcraft, to make her more beautiful than anyone else.'".

It indirectly-follows what Lilith wants again.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

want-an-equal is an NPC-directed quip.

The response is "'You ask what I want,' she says slowly. 'I want what Adam should have been, if he had chosen differently. I want a man who is my match, who is clever and private and wise; one who likes the wasteland and the night-time and the open sea rather than the daylight crowd of [eve-named]Eve's feckless brood. With such a man, I would be mortal, live my days, and die, not cursed but reconciled[seeks-equal].'

You yourself prefer the wasteland and the open places."

It quip-supplies Snow White.

whether you could be such a man is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "whether you could be such a man". The true-name is "whether you could be such a man".

Understand "I" or "prefer" or "and" or "the" or "wasteland" or "can" or "sea" or "open places/sea" as whether you could be such a man. The comment is "'[if immediately]I prefer the wasteland and the night-time[otherwise]What about me?' you say. 'Could I be what you seek? I prefer the wasteland[end if].'

Speaking this is like the moment a bit of metal, coming too close to a lodestone, snaps to its side[retract-anger].

She is no less terrifying, and yet you know her as clearly as you have ever known anyone. You also know yourself. You have no desires that you would need to hide from her; no secrets that she could not know; there is nothing in the beauty of the forest or in the joy of the bloody hunt that would shame you in her eyes. All the restlessness of your life, your failure to take a wife, your discomfort in company, your awkward otherness — all that is translated from disorder into function, as she sees it.".

It mentions yourself and Lilith.

The response is "She frowns, and her eyes search yours. 'You are no one. An ordinary man.'".

It is restrictive.

It indirectly-follows want-an-equal.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

that you once was King is an informative quip.

The printed name is "that you once were King". The true-name is "that you once was King".

Understand "is" or "were" or "I" or "was" as that you once was King.

Understand "I" as that you once was King. The comment is "'I was once the King,' you tell her. 'I performed a blood-sundering in order to reconcile my kingdom with the dwarfs. The Queen's magic is nothing to that which I performed, but mine was an act of expiation.'"

The response is "Her mouth opens. You have surprised Lilith.

'I didn't see that,' she says. 'You didn't know until—' She frowns, and looks at the corpse. 'Yes, I see. And now instead of reversing the sundering, you are willing to come away with me? Snow White is your daughter after all, then — you are willing to leave her to her fate, and the Queen that was your wife, and your kingdom, being destroyed by the Queen's malicious magics, and simply go?'"

It assumes you-were-king.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It directly-follows whether you could be such a man.

It is restrictive.

Instead of saying no when the current quip is that you once was king:

say "You cannot; you have come too far to change your mind."

Instead of saying yes when the current quip is that you once was king:

say "'Yes. There is nothing more I can do for the kingdom; I have offered it all I have. As bad as it is now, I think it would get worse if I were to revoke the sundering — if I could even find a way to do it.'

She takes up the rest of the explanation. 'And besides this, though you still sometimes desire the Queen, you do not feel as a husband feels towards her; and though you protect Snow White, you do not feel that you are her father; and you do not want to feel those things.'

You do not meet her glance, but you and she both know that she can see into your mind at times.

'Your weakness before was that you were too gentle to your own people, and did not punish them sufficiently when they showed cruelty to the dwarrows, and the injustice led to war, and war to death — but a war that you were winning, nonetheless. You did not act to save your own; you acted to save the dwarrows when you saw what you had done to them.' She has crept closer to you as she spoke, her gentle voice laying open old wounds, and now she tucks her hand under your elbow and stands beside you in what is almost an embrace. 'I too was cut away from what was mine. I know.'";

pause the game;

say "As you look, Snow White becomes two women: one the princess, your daughter-that-was, who does not recognize you. The pink returns to her cheeks and she looks, again, like an ordinary girl.

The other is stranger, older, an archaic face, framed in a tangle of nut-brown hair, and as Snow White was ice, this woman is a creation of fire. She reaches out to you and takes your hand, and your fingers are shocked by the warmth.

'Go,' says Lilith to Snow White. 'Find your place among the dwarrow. In time — if you can remember — tell them what has happened. Fight the Queen together, and reclaim your kingdom.'

Snow White looks dazed — just a little girl now. 'I can't,' she says, in her smallest voice.

Lilith reaches out and presses her finger to the girl's forehead, and when she takes it away there is a fiery brand. 'You [italic type]will[roman type],' Lilith says. 'For the sake of this man, who was your father, and now can do nothing more for his kingdom. You will do the rest, so that his sacrifice will not have been in vain.'

Then Snow White straightens her back and takes the lantern — a fair bargain, you suppose, since you have Lilith instead — and she walks away into the forest to the north, never turning back her head. You feel the ember of something that might have been pride. But she is cut off from you and will never again be your own daughter.";

pause the game;

say "'The Queen was not a bad woman, before,' you say, remembering.

Lilith's mouth quirks. 'But she is unquestionably of the stock of Eve.' She looks at the tip of her finger, which appears a little numb. 'I will be your equal, if you will be mine.'";

record "Joining Lilith as her consort, knowing you had been King" as an ending;

end the game saying "You and Lilith are free".

Rule for quip-introducing point out that only ordinary men now populate the earth:

say "[roman type]But only ordinary men now populate the earth.";

list no other quips.

whether even the King would suffice is a weak questioning quip. The comment is "'You, Lilith, would find even the King ordinary.'".

It mentions King.

The response is "'Now, perhaps. I think he might once have been something more than he is[queue point out that only ordinary men now populate the earth as immediate optional].'".

It is restrictive.

It is negated by you-were-king.

It directly-follows whether you could be such a man.

It quip-supplies Snow White

point out that only ordinary men now populate the earth is a q-transitional performative quip. The comment is "'There are only ordinary men left.'".

It mentions yourself, Adam.

The response is "She walks closer to you and she says a word. Whereupon you do not see the beautiful child princess, nor again a winged demon, but a woman with nut-brown hair and keen eyes[set body-context to Snow White]. Whether she is beautiful or not, you could not say. Her expression does not invite you to judge her in that way[scary][friendly]. 'It is a long time, a very very long time, since any man offered me what you offer, knowing what I am. But it is likely that you would disappoint me and that I would kill you, soon enough. Under such conditions, would you dare try?'".

The uncertainty-refusal is "[one of]'This is no time for shrugs and sheepishness.'[or]'Yes or no. Have the courage to choose one.'[or]'How Evelike. Make up your mind.'[at random][conditionally queue no-27]".

It directly-follows whether you could be such a man.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It is restrictive.

It is listed.

no-27 is a negative quip. The printed name is "say no". The true-name is "no-27". The comment is "'I confess you have made it seem less enticing. The being-killed portion, in particular.'".

It mentions yourself.

The response is "'I expected nothing else,' she admits. 'It may be that the only way for me is to forget myself and become like one of Eve's daughters after all. How that outcome would please Him.' She half-shrugs. 'Well, then, [vocative huntsman], it is once again up to you to choose where we go from here.'".

It directly-follows point out that only ordinary men now populate the earth.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

yes-17 is an affirmative quip. The printed name is "say yes". The true-name is "yes-17". The comment is "'Perhaps Adam also feared you,' you say. How strange that Lilith should appear to you vulnerable and dear. 'He acted in that fear. I choose not to. If you would have accepted his choice of you, then accept mine: this is what I want.'".

It mentions Adam, Lilith.

The response is "She considers you for a long time, as though she is rummaging in your thoughts and testing them for adequacy. 'Clever and wise,' she requested[retract-anger]; can you live up to that? A demon with many thousand years['] experience might be seeking more knowledge and wisdom than you can provide. [paragraph break]'Untie me,' she says finally. 'Let me let the princess['] body go.'".

The nag is "[one of]'Well? Take off the chain.'[angry][or]She turns to give you better access so that you can remove the chain.[angry][or]Sensing your hesitation, she remarks, 'It is too late now to change your mind. But I won't hurt you more than the Queen would.'[angry][or]You begin to hate yourself for your cowardice.[angry][or][angry][fail freedom][stopping]".

It directly-follows whether you could be such a man, point out that only ordinary men now populate the earth.

It quip-supplies Snow White.

It is restrictive.

To say retract-anger:

if anger is greater than 0:

change anger to 0.

To say fail freedom:

say "When you still do not untie Lilith, she sighs. 'So not unlike Adam after all, it seems,' she says: and you know that the moment is lost. There will never be an agreement between you; you will always be alien to one another in kind.

'Come to the haven,' she says at last. 'I will see that the dwarrows give you food and then set you on your way. You're not likely to survive if you return to the Queen. And I find I can spare you that much pity.'";

record "Promising Lilith more than you could give" as an ending;

end the game saying "You have failed to be other than ordinary after all."

Instead of saying no when the current quip is yes-17:

say "You have come too far on this path to refuse her."

Instead of saying yes when the current quip is yes-17:

try freeing Snow White.

Instead of freeing Snow White when the current quip is yes-17 or the current quip is point out that only ordinary men now populate the earth:

say "With trembling fingers you unwind the silver chain.

She brings her hands around and chafes her wrists. 'There is a pain between my shoulder blades as well,' she remarks. 'That is a cruel way to bind a person for long— but I suppose it will be Snow White's discomfort alone.'

Then she blurs, and steps beside herself, so that you are faced with two women. One is the princess (still beautiful but less fey, with roses in her cheeks and lips such as any girl might have). The other is Lilith of the nut brown hair, and her shadow-wings envelop her so that she is not precisely naked.

Lilith turns (gracefully, as a flame is lithe) to the princess. 'You will have to make the rest of the journey alone,' she says, neither kindly nor unkindly.

The princess nods. She looks numb with shock.

Then Lilith holds out her hand to you. 'Come with me,' she says. 'I have a cavern in the dunes on the far side of the world, and there we will rest and speak and consider; and after sunset the air will be so warm that we can lie outside unclothed. Then I will tell you all the names of the stars in that part of the sky, and how they used to look when creation was new.'";

if the player knows hart-pact:

say "So you leave behind the hart's corpse, and the promise you made to that spirit, and the promise you made to Snow White, and the promise you made to the Queen: all those promises were made in ignorance.";

record "Joining LIlith as her consort" as an ending;

end the game saying "You are Lilith's consort now."

Instead of kissing Snow White when the player knows seeks-equal:

say "[one of]You make half a move to do it, and know it's the [wrong-to-kiss]wrong thing[or]No, you must not[stopping]. An [italic type]equal[roman type], she said. It is doubtful — the longest of long shots — that this demon as old as the dawn of Eden would accept you as a consort; but if she would, you must not begin while she is tied and trapped and unable to resist."

Instead of hugging Snow White when the player knows seeks-equal:

if the player recollects whether you could be such a man:

say "You are past the point for physical gestures." instead;

if the player knows wrong-to-kiss:

say "You compromise on this, then, if you ought not kiss her. ";

if the player carries something:

now everything carried by the player is in the location;

say "Setting down all you carry, you";

otherwise:

say "You";

say " wrap your arms around her. Her body is just as small and delicately made as ever, and she nestles against you[friendly]. ";

try discussing whether you could be such a man.

Notes

[1]. We want to produce a comment *before* the player speaks his subject-changing line, so the rule for subject-changing isn't useful here; we just want a straight before.

[2]. this quip will usually face off against "what she knows about Adam", and the latter is a more generic repeatable, so we want this first.

[3]. same reason as with the comment above..

[4]. With this quip, we allow the possibility of the player recognizing the character before her name has actually been mentioned.