Alabaster — 99 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 6 - More Conversation with Happy

not-talking-now is an NPC-directed quip.

It mentions Snow White.

The response is "'She won't be contributing to our discussion,' says [the corpse]. 'But I think we can do without her input.'"

what he knows about me is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Do you have any words of wisdom about me? Since you know everything, I mean. Something that I should be aware of.'".

It mentions yourself.

The response is "'[if the player knows you-were-king]I think you already know more than is good for you[otherwise]I think you know exactly as much as you should be aware of[end if],' he says exactly.".

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes will-burn-box.

It is listed.

what he knows of Lilith is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Do you know about a woman named Lilith?'".

It mentions Lilith.

The response is "[The corpse] looks at you keenly. 'That is the name of a demon,' he says. 'Those that are on first-name terms with her should be carefully avoided, and that is the best advice you could possibly have on the topic.'".

It is negated by snow-white-possessed.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes will-burn-box, lilith-named.

what Lilith does is a questioning quip. The comment is "'What does [if immediately]she[otherwise]Lilith[end if] do?'".

It mentions demons, Lilith.

The response is "'Whatever she wishes,' he says. 'Listen, there are things that you could know that would not be any favor to you. We made an agreement that you could ask for help.' He points at Snow White with his antlers. 'She's your immediate problem, friend.'".

It indirectly-follows what he knows of Lilith.

It quip-supplies corpse.

what to do about Snow White plus Lilith is a performative quip.

The printed name is "what to do about Snow White and Lilith". The true-name is "what to do about Snow White plus Lilith".

Understand "and" as what to do about Snow White plus Lilith. The comment is "'Snow White seems to be possessed,' you say. 'By a demoness.'".

It mentions Lilith, Snow White, demons.

The response is "'I know,' he says. 'I wish you didn't, though.' He trots in a neat circle. 'It will only complicate things, and really the situation is very simple. Snow White there? Not innocent. Not as you see her now. The possession has made her a vampire[vampirism-revealed]. She will kill to protect herself; she is dangerous. If you are clever, you'll do what I've told you to do — burning the box with the heart inside will set me free, and it will grant you protections, too.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes lilith-named, snow-white-possessed.

why Grumpy seems such a character is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "why Grumpy is such a character". The true-name is "why Grumpy seems such a character".

Understand "is" as why Grumpy seems such a character. The comment is "'Grumpy doesn't sound like a very pleasant type.'".

It mentions Grumpy.

The response is "'He had a deprived childhood,' [the corpse] says. 'Always wound up with a hand-me-down pick.'".

It indirectly-follows what the dirt was for.

It quip-supplies corpse.

other-names is a privately-named questioning quip. The comment is "'[if the previous quip is other-names][one of]Or[or]What about[or]How about[at random][otherwise][one of]Do you have any relations called[or]Or do you know a[stopping][end if] ['][guessed-nickname][']?'". The printed name is "whether he has a relation called [guessed-nickname]". The true-name is "other-names". [1]

It mentions dwarf-cousins.

The response is "[one of]'Of course not,' he says. 'What kind of fool name is that?' And he mutters to himself for a little while about the stupidity of humans, and their ignorance about all other kinds of creature.[or][one of]'No.'[or](Bored): 'Absolutely not.'[or]'Nope.'[or]'Once more, No.'[or]'Is this game fun for you? Because the answer is still no.'[at random][stopping]".

It is repeatable.

It assumes happy-name-known.

It quip-supplies corpse.

To say guessed-nickname:

let N be indexed text;

change N to "[player's command]";

change N to "[N in title case]"; [2]

let W be the number of words in N;

say "[word number W in N]".

[And... Rob suggested that one other interesting outcome of the game would be to have the soul of Happy go off to inhabit the mirror, instead of its current bitter occupant. So that's going to need a bunch of additional conversation, first to introduce information about the mirror if the player hasn't already learned it from Snow White, and then to raise the possibility of replacing the soul.]

whether the Queen seems dangerous is a questioning quip.

The printed name is " ". The true-name is "whether the Queen seems dangerous".

Understand "is" as whether the Queen seems dangerous. The comment is "'Is the Queen a danger to me?'".

It mentions Queen, witchcraft, magic mirror.

The response is "'You know she is,' [the corpse] responds. 'She is a witch — and that magic mirror is dreadfully powerful. She made that, you know[queen-made-mirror] — placed the soul of one of her waiting women into it[servant-used], and now she goes on listening to the lady's insane bitter advice[bad-soul-in-mirror]. Things might have gone better if she'd got some good soul into the mirror instead... but it was to be expected, when all that she does, she does with the help of demons.'".

It is negated by bad-soul-in-mirror.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes will-burn-box.

It is listed.

what would happen if the mirror contained a better soul is a questioning quip. The comment is "'What would happen if the mirror contained a good soul?'".

It mentions magic mirror, souls.

The response is "'Its advice would be better; its view of the world would be less warped. The waiting woman trapped there now... well, she's always thought of people as her enemies. Everything anyone does, she views through a distortion of jealousy and contempt. I doubt the Queen herself understands how much she's been changed by looking into that mirror so often.'".

It indirectly-follows whether the Queen seems dangerous.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes bad-soul-in-mirror, queen-made-mirror.

It is listed.

whether a good soul could be put into the mirror is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Would it be possible to... repair the mirror?' you suggest. You only half understand these matters, but he might. 'Could we put a different soul into it?'".

Understand "can" as whether a good soul could be put into the mirror.

It mentions magic mirror, souls.

The response is "A keen light comes into his eyes[set body-context to the corpse]. 'For instance, mine?' he suggests.".

The uncertainty-refusal is "[one of]'Come, man, I'm making you a sincere offer here,' he says. 'Give it a little thought.'[or]'No good.'[stopping]".

It is restrictive.

It indirectly-follows what would happen if the mirror contained a better soul.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It is listed.

yes-5 is an affirmative quip. The printed name is "say yes". The true-name is "yes-5". The comment is "'Certainly — why not? Your life was cut short, and this body does not suit you...'".

It mentions corpse, magic mirror, souls.

The response is "'It could be done,' he says. 'Best to do it without the Queen's knowledge, though.' He stamps his back leg, relishing the idea of tricking the Queen. 'Burn the box as we agreed, so that I am free of this hart, but then return to the castle with the ashes. The Queen will go before the mirror to consult about whether the ashes you brought are truly the ashes of Snow White's heart[take-ashes]. And then I believe I could perform the exchange... but it must be quickly done, before I fade from this world and into the next.'".

It directly-follows whether a good soul could be put into the mirror.

It quip-supplies corpse.

yes-25 is an affirmative quip. The printed name is "say yes". The true-name is "yes-25". The comment is "'I will do it.' It could hardly make matters worse, after all.".

The response is "His eyes[set body-context to the corpse] gleam in triumph. He bows his antlers.".

It directly-follows yes-5.

It quip-supplies corpse.

no-23 is a negative quip. The printed name is "say no". The true-name is "no-23". The comment is "'I...' You flounder. 'I wouldn't want to burden someone like you with the Queen's presence, day in and out.' Not to mention that it would be a strange matter to have your kingdom effectively ruled by a dwarf.".

It mentions magic mirror.

The response is "He looks wounded. 'I do not offer for my own advantage! But very well — go and try to restore your kingdom on your own, in the best way you're able. I wish you well.'".

It directly-follows whether a good soul could be put into the mirror.

It quip-supplies corpse.

who exactly was Lilith again is a questioning quip. The printed name is "who Lilith was". The true-name is "who exactly was Lilith again". The comment is "'Do you know anything about Lilith?'".

It mentions Lilith.

The response is "'Adam's first wife[lilith-first-wife]?' He looks very wary. 'There are things from the world's beginning that it is best not to pry into. That is one such.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes lilith-named.

whether he ever met Saint Eustace is a privately-named questioning quip.[3] The comment is "'Say, did you meet Saint Eustace?'".

Understand "st/saint" or "placidus" or "eustace/Eustachius/Eustathius" or "whether he ever met saint eustace" as whether he ever met Saint Eustace.

The response is "'Ah, the Saint that had a vision of the Lord as glimpsed between the antlers of a stag.' He fixes you with an unsympathetic glare. 'An event that plainly occurred many centuries ago, as even you must know. So I am forced to conclude that you are toying with me.' [paragraph break]Yes, well, but what does he expect? None of the polite conversation topics you learned at the maternal knee seem precisely appropriate to the current circumstances.".

It quip-supplies corpse. [4]

[if the player types "st. eustace", this is read as the end of one command and the beginning of another. There is a canonical way to fix this using Punctuation Removal, but I am not going to use it right now because I am worried about the interactions with other "reading a command" rules. So instead I have juryrigged a crazy solution which may not work.]

Understand "eustace" or "Eustachius" or "Eustathius" as a mistake ("It is unlikely St. Eustace would help you now.").

how the juggling business went for him is a questioning quip. The comment is "'[if immediately]Juggling, eh[otherwise]So you were a juggler, eh[end if]? How was that, a good living?'".

It mentions corpse.

The response is "He gives you the look best approximating sarcasm as rendered in cervid features. 'I had just worked out a rather inventive thing to do with the seventh flaming knife,' he says. 'But I doubt very much that you are actually interested in fair-business when you have other troubles to attend to.'".

It indirectly-follows what his name seems.

It quip-supplies corpse.

no-33 is a negative quip. The printed name is "say no". The true-name is "no-33". The comment is "'That is true. But since we'd recently been introduced, it seemed mannerly to take an interest.'".

It mentions corpse.

The response is "'I hope you don't mind if I don't reciprocate by asking your reminiscences of being a huntsman. I can recollect only too clearly my host's memories of being on the receiving end.'".

It directly-follows how the juggling business went for him.

It quip-supplies corpse.

yes-29 is an affirmative quip. The printed name is "say yes". The true-name is "yes-29". The comment is "'I am always interested in the ways of people unlike myself,' you say piously. This is a lie. But it is accurate to say that you have been trying to cultivate this interest: it is easy to fall into unhealthy patterns of thought about the dwarrows, even though the war is now over.".

It mentions dwarrows.

The response is "He coughs in debelief.".

It directly-follows how the juggling business went for him.

It quip-supplies corpse.

waffle is a performative quip. The comment is "'Well, er — that is, it's true I have other things I ought to be doing, but I wouldn't want to seem impolite, and in any case I have thought recently that I ought to try to learn more about people who are unlike myself...'".

Understand "[maybe]" as waffle.

It mentions dwarrows.

The response is "He rolls his eyes. 'It's of no import now anyway,' he says. 'These hooves aren't made for juggling.'".

It directly-follows how the juggling business went for him.

It quip-supplies corpse.

what exactly he hath done to time is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "what exactly he has done to time". The true-name is "what exactly he hath done to time".

Understand "has" as what exactly he hath done to time. The comment is "'What exactly have you done to time?' you ask. 'It doesn't seem to be... going.'".

It mentions night, witchcraft.

The response is "'That,' he says, in a hollowly portentous tone of voice, 'is the sort of secret that can never be properly explained to someone who has not passed through the veil. Mortals do not understand eternity.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

why the lantern does not burn is a questioning quip. The comment is "'The lantern doesn't seem to be burning properly.'".

It mentions night, lantern, flame.

The response is "'No. It will resume — flickering, consuming fuel, being able to ignite other objects — once I release the grip of my magic and return you to the normal flow of time.'".

It quip-supplies corpse

what seems really at the safe haven is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "what is really at the safe haven". The true-name is "what seems really at the safe haven".

Understand "is" as what seems really at the safe haven. The comment is "'What is at the safe haven, then?'".

It mentions safe haven.

The response is "'Seven dwarrow servants; food supplies, and other things that Snow White may need; enough to last through the winter, and (she hopes) to go unnoticed by the Queen. It is not a place that you would find comfortable or welcoming — but that is part of its purpose.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

what he means by other things is a questioning quip. The comment is "'[if immediately]What do you mean, [otherwise]What did you mean when you said the haven contained [end if][']other things[']?'".

It mentions safe haven.

The response is "[if the player knows vampirism-revealed]'Those arcane items that protect a vampire in sleep,' he says.[otherwise]He shakes his head. 'Certain items— but I would be telling the story backward if I explained now. The question really is, how much do you want to know about Snow White?'[end if]".

It indirectly-follows what seems really at the safe haven.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It is listed.

what death seems like is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "what death is like". The true-name is "what death seems like".

Understand "is" as what death seems like. The comment is "'What is death like?'".

It mentions death.

The response is "'Disappointing,' he says frankly. 'You build it up in your mind a long time in advance, and then it happens, and it is both strange and completely ordinary. From this side, believe me, it does not seem like the top experience of one's lifetime. Not even in the top ten. [paragraph break]'The state of knowledge that comes afterward, that's pretty good. But the death itself? You wouldn't make five pence charging admission to Death at the fair, is all I can say about that[casually queue hey-I-am-dead].'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

yes-30 is an affirmative quip. The printed name is "say yes". The true-name is "yes-30". The comment is "'Oh, I'm sure that's true.'".

It mentions death.

The response is "'Well, it is true, and not just because of the obvious difficulties you'd have with Death's current reputation. Even if you could bring back some prior customers, maybe drum up some testimonials, they wouldn't have much to say for it.'".

It directly-follows what death seems like.

It quip-supplies corpse.

no-34 is a negative quip. The printed name is "say no". The true-name is "no-34". The comment is "'I can't believe it's so boring.'".

It mentions death.

The response is "He just shrugs. 'I wouldn't say boring exactly. Just not as spectacular as you're probably hoping. You've heard about beautiful lights, or choirs of angels, or perhaps crossing a river by boat...? Scratch all that. It's more on the order of a painful full-body sneeze. Brief, involuntary, and embarrassingly animal.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

hey-I-am-dead is an NPC-directed quip.

The response is "'Of course, that doesn't stop you every few minutes afterwards thinking to yourself, [']hey, I'm dead!['] until the novelty wears off.'"

where vampires come from is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Where do vampires come from?'".

It mentions vampirism.

The response is "'Other vampires,' he says. 'And so on back to the earliest days of the world. They originated then in a kind of glitch — a break in the creative design, you might say, that demons were able to take advantage of.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

why demons did such a thing is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Why would demons have wanted to do such a thing?'".

It mentions demons.

The response is "'To have some project of their own in the world,' he says. 'Every other thing that walks or creeps or flies or swims, sooner or later, gets jealous of God. Able to make whatever He wants, whenever He thinks of it.'".

It directly-follows where vampires come from.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It is listed.

whether there seem any young princes in neighboring kingdoms is a questioning quip.

The printed name is "whether there are any young princes in neighboring kingdoms". The true-name is "whether there seem any young princes in neighboring kingdoms".

Understand "are" or "prince" as whether there seem any young princes in neighboring kingdoms. The comment is "'Are there any eligible young princes in neighboring kingdoms?'".

It mentions family.

The response is "'None fool enough to marry Snow White as she currently is,' he says flatly. 'Her breath alone would keep any royal suitors at bay.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

banish-her-too is an NPC-directed quip.

It mentions Snow White, Lilith.

The response is "'As you know, Snow White's possessed,' [the corpse] remarks. 'So you must be careful of her — she has the teeth of a vampire[vampirism-revealed], but she is even older and more cunning than one of them, and if she gets to thinking you pose a threat to her, she'll rip your throat out or drive you mad, just as she thinks fit.

'If you keep your pact with me, though, and burn my heart in its box, the fumes will drive the demoness off, as well. And whatever you do, don't get to feeling sorry for her. That's how she works on people.'"

It quip-supplies corpse.

remark that his solution seems very convenient is a performative quip.

The printed name is "remark that his solution is very convenient". The true-name is "remark that his solution seems very convenient".

Understand "is" as remark that his solution seems very convenient. The comment is "'Very convenient that the thing I need to do in order to be rid of Lilith is the same thing you want me to do!'".

It mentions Lilith.

The response is "He tosses his head impatiently. 'It is neither a contrivance nor a strange coincidence,' he says. 'That box is made of wood of a certain tree of the Garden of Eden, and written over in the language of worldmaking, and it has the power to unmake magic that has twinned matter with the wrong spirit.' [paragraph break]Seeing your skepticism, he subsides. 'If I wished to lie to you, I might invent for your benefit some hocus spell, might I not? I am telling you the absolute truth, if you have sense enough to accept it.'".

It directly-follows banish-her-too.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It is listed

how Snow White came to be possessed is a questioning quip. The comment is "'How did Snow White come to be possessed?' you ask. 'Where did the demon come from?'".

It mentions Lilith, Snow White.

The response is "'A side effect[magic-involves-demons] of dark magic,' he says. 'The Queen summoned up the demoness Lilith to make her beautiful[queen-invoked-lilith], and that demon had to go somewhere. Snow White was to hand.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes snow-white-possessed.

It is listed.

why the Queen so badly wishes to be beautiful is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Of all the foolish reasons to invoke demons,' you mutter. 'It's rank madness for the Queen to summon something up out of hell to do her face up!'".

It mentions Queen, magic.

The response is "An odd look crosses his face, almost pitying. 'Understand I'm no enthusiast of the Queen's,' he says. 'But it is not simple vanity that moves her on. She was left behind, you see, and she doesn't understand why, and she does not even remember properly what she lost. She is angry and afraid and lonely, and when she looks into the mirror the only witless advice it can offer her is that love and power come naturally to the beautiful. And so— this is the result.'".

It quip-supplies corpse.

It assumes queen-invoked-lilith.

It is listed

why the King abandoned the Queen is a questioning quip. The comment is "'Why did [if the player knows you-were-king]I[otherwise]the King[end if] abandon her? If that is what happened, I mean.'".

It mentions king.

The response is "'A belated and somewhat misdirected sense of justice,' [the corpse] says, with surprising bitterness. [if the player knows happy-name-known]His nickname is evidently more of a suggestion than a guarantee. [end if]'I've never had much taste for dramatic sacrifices and grotesque punishments and so on. But [if the player knows you-were-king]you were[queue blood-sundering-clue as immediate obligatory][otherwise]the King was[end if] reared to think everything could be bought and paid for in blood — even peace. There's no sanity to be found in spiking yourself on your own regrets.'".

It directly-follows why the Queen so badly wishes to be beautiful.

It quip-supplies corpse.

It is negated by blood-sundering.

It is listed.

that seems horrible is an informative quip.

The printed name is "that is horrible". The true-name is "that seems horrible".

Understand "is" as that seems horrible. The comment is "'That's horrible!'".

It mentions Queen.

The response is "'Is it?' He's looking amused again, in that particularly annoying way of his. He seems keen to remind you of everything he knows that you don't. [paragraph break]'It doesn't show much maternal instinct, I'll grant you that. But the dwarrows are used to how menfolk treat anything smaller than themselves, so I suppose I am not so surprised as you.'".

It indirectly-follows how Snow White came to be possessed .

It quip-supplies corpse.

Notes

[1]. we only want the player to trigger this if he types something like ASK ABOUT SNEEZY or ASK THE HART ABOUT THORIN — otherwise we won't have a nickname ready to swap in to the question and it will all go wrong.

[2]. This adjusts the caps on the player's question even if it's typed in all lower-case or all-caps

[3]. This is privately-named because we don't want this completely implausible quip to fire *unless* the player specifically mentions the saint in question

[4]. This is a total easter egg, courtesy of Sam Kabo Ashwell. Beta-testers will try all sorts of stuff. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saint_Eustace_(legend) for an explanation and also a wacky picture of Saint Eustace mid-vision.