April Exceptional Story: Go Tell the King of Cats

[quote=Catherine Raymond]

I would think so too, except text at the Labyrinth of Tigers suggests that some of the people you can &quotgive&quot as tribute are useful precisely BECAUSE the tigers don’t have opposable thumbs! E.g. This storylet from the Tribute area on Level 5 of the Labyrinth: &quotOffer the labour of a zailorThe tigers of the Neath are unusually capable. But even then, they can not operate a ship by themselves without thumbs.&quot
edited by cathyr19355 on 3/27/2020[/quote]

maybe their tools guns and wepons are custom made to be usable by them?

Suscribed again this week and this story really made me thankful for it. The story of the Turbulent Tabby, more than the pursuit of redemption that I had thought it was, happened, from my perspective, to be more of a dissection between unending willingness to pursue one’s wishes in life, until its very end, or reflection on time as possible catalyst for the embetterment of oneself and coming generations. The final decision was difficult for me thanks to the development of the feline, specially in London (had to admit that the fragments of the Carnival’s cat made me quite melancholic). Here I will leave the excerpt of my chosen ending, which was the fulfillment of the cat’s wishes. I pondered the decision for a long time, since the King of Cats did not appear as truly trustworthy to me, but in the end I chose this one for roleplaying reasons, and I have to say I do not regret a thing. The minor critique I would like to express is that I would like the possibility of exploring both variables of the Parabolan ways, since while short, they were really vivid and beautiful. That said, great job!

+I loved the writing and the weirdness of the King of Cats. Parabola is almost always written superbly, and this was no exception. It was a sad story of course, and I am sad I didn’t get the chance to satisfy everyone since you can only deliver one request.

Perhaps, given the times, I would have preferred a story like the previous month’s ES, but this does not take away from the beauty of this one.

What am I missing here? I progressed in the story until I was told to go to the Carnival. I’ve spoken to two different cats about character references. I was out of actions, so I logged out. When I logged back in, suddenly, I can’t find the storylet anywhere. I think I’ve been through all of London, checked my lodgings, my social activities, etc. I have the Season of Endeavor storylet, but the option of listening to the urchins’ conversations.

My status in the Myself tab is: Go Say it to the King 35 - Gather character references from the Turbulent Tabby’s old compatriots.

Any hints on where to go to continue? Thanks all.

[quote=Myrto]What am I missing here? I progressed in the story until I was told to go to the Carnival. I’ve spoken to two different cats about character references. I was out of actions, so I logged out. When I logged back in, suddenly, I can’t find the storylet anywhere. I think I’ve been through all of London, checked my lodgings, my social activities, etc. I have the Season of Endeavor storylet, but the option of listening to the urchins’ conversations.

My status in the Myself tab is: Go Say it to the King 35 - Gather character references from the Turbulent Tabby’s old compatriots.

Any hints on where to go to continue? Thanks all.[/quote]

The last cat is the Kitten, in the Singing Mandrake. Veilgarden offshoot.

[quote=Myrto]What am I missing here? I progressed in the story until I was told to go to the Carnival. I’ve spoken to two different cats about character references. I was out of actions, so I logged out. When I logged back in, suddenly, I can’t find the storylet anywhere. I think I’ve been through all of London, checked my lodgings, my social activities, etc. I have the Season of Endeavor storylet, but the option of listening to the urchins’ conversations.

My status in the Myself tab is: Go Say it to the King 35 - Gather character references from the Turbulent Tabby’s old compatriots.

Any hints on where to go to continue? Thanks all.[/quote]

Have you checked Veilgarden? One cat only shows up there, I think

Ugh! I forgot the new map has these separate areas! I found it in the offshoot Singing Mandrake, not the regular Veilgarden.

Thanks so much!

[quote=The Curious Watcher]For those wondering what the Banded Prince wanted…

Being that I know all about the Orts and am a good friend of the Banded Prince, I did the responsible thing.

If you ask the King of Cats about what the Burnished Champion wanted.[/quote]
Thank you. I simply asked the King to remove his gift from her, which seemed to have set things right.

&quotyou can’t help but wonder why the cats of London are so very terrible.&quot

I just love this phrasing! FBG writers are awesome.

Ending choice spoilers:

I guess cats do have nine lives after all.]

Probably didn’t make the perfect choices but I am satisfied with them.

[quote=Shadowcthuhlu][quote=The Curious Watcher]For those wondering what the Banded Prince wanted…

Being that I know all about the Orts and am a good friend of the Banded Prince, I did the responsible thing.

If you ask the King of Cats about what the Burnished Champion wanted.[/quote]
Thank you. I simply asked the King to remove his gift from her, which seemed to have set things right.[/quote]

I picked the same as you, and after reading these echoes, am now slightly confused as to whether my good end is in fact good or not.

The prince certainly seems happy with the result, but is that because the fake companion is just pretending better, or did undoing her wish return her to normal? I thought the latter, but if so, then why did the fake make the request of me in the first place? Is the real companion somehow able to briefly surface? Sounds hard, what with being a skin bag full of snakes, but maybe that’s less literal and more parabolan metaphor logic.

&quotLiterally&quot isn’t a thing in parabola, no. And being full of Orts doesn’t mean she’s actually a simulacrum. She could just be a tiger who has been possessed and the &quotempty skin full of snakes&quot is how it expresses itself in Parabola. If she’s anything like other possessed people we’e seen, like Silas, they can be at times themselves and at times snake-brain.

Thanks for clearing that up.

I had no idea Silas was snake possessed. Where do we learn that bit? Is it only for those with a salon and not an orphanage? The only other interaction with him I’m aware of is neathmas and I don’t recall any suggestions there.

I’m fairly certain it’s only from inviting him to a Salon, yes.

THAT LITTLE BASTARD INSULTED MY SHIP :mad:

why is there no option to let him bloody well swim to Port Carnelian…

I’m glad that I was able to help the Ship’s Cat be taken on at the Banded Prince’s Court especially since the result is so adorable, but annoyed with myself for delivering the Banded Prince’s petition to the King, against my better judgement and he wasn’t very happy about the result either. I’m very glad that I managed to give the Tabby the Closing of a Life ending – I confess to checking the echoes here first so thank you to all who posted ahead of me! this story made me tear up a bit so very glad for that. I liked this story – short but bittersweet. (but also, I like cats! the Duchess is my idol.)
edited by theonie on 3/28/2020
edited by theonie on 3/28/2020

[spoiler] After reading through various journal entries, I think I know what happened between the King of Cats, the Burnished Champion, and the Banded Prince. The Burnished Prince originally went to the King of Cats to obtain enough power to usurp the Banded Prince, but the process wasn’t what she expected. The King of Cats is ultimately a result of Fingerking shenanigans, so certain requests with ill intentions causes a lot of unintended consequences. In this case, the Burnished Champion was either partially possessed by Fingerkings or given a bit of their power.

The Banded Prince senses that the Champion is affected by Fingerking magic, so he comes to the incorrect conclusion that the real Champion was kidnapped by the Orts and replaced with a doppelganger. However, the Champion is not a fake, and seems to regret her &quotgift&quot and initial wish to supplant her consort, but the Prince does not know this.

If you choose to deliver the Champion’s petition to the King of Cats, it takes back the initial gift and the Champion returns to how she used to be, making the Prince happy and helping the tigers. If you kill the Champion, the Prince thanks you because it at least meets his expectations about how traitors should be dealt with. At the same time, the Banded Prince is upset with the results of his petition because King of Cats fulfilled his requests in a pretty terrible way: making the Champion harmless, but at the cost of all her good qualities. It’s a sad story, all things considered.
[/spoiler]

[quote=Jolanda Swan]+I loved the writing and the weirdness of the King of Cats. Parabola is almost always written superbly, and this was no exception. It was a sad story of course, and I am sad I didn’t get the chance to satisfy everyone since you can only deliver one request.

Perhaps, given the times, I would have preferred a story like the previous month’s ES, but this does not take away from the beauty of this one.[/quote]
I seem to have satisfied everyone?

Got the kittens into the Prince’s court, had the Champion’s old request revoked, encouraged the Tabby to make his request.
edited by ChangelingChilde on 3/28/2020

I have a few questions about the cat factions and the Fingerkings after playing this story:

  1. Who gave the cats the responsibility to protect the borders of Parabola from the Fingerkings? I would assume that it would be the Judgements since they regularly enforce the laws that prevent the Is-Not from spilling over the reality, but it could from a specific one or a different party altogether. The cats are incredibly prideful and are not immune to Fingerking temptations as seen with the Rapacious Prince from &quotBorrowed Glory&quot and the King of Cats of this story, so they must respect this entity a great deal. It also must be powerful enough to grant them an alternate form in Parabola to fight against the Fingerkings in the first place.

  2. Where did the Fingerkings come from? I know the story about how Fingerkings bargained with Devils and want to be real, but if there is an origin to the cats, there is definitely one for the Fingerkings. Were they born from the egg that gave birth to Parabola? The culmination of treacherous dreams that eventually manifested themselves as snakes? Regardless, something this powerful does not come out of nothing, and I would like to learn more about Fingerking history in the future.

[quote=The Curious Watcher]I have a few questions about the cat factions and the Fingerkings after playing this story:

[spoiler]

  1. Who gave the cats the responsibility to protect the borders of Parabola from the Fingerkings? I would assume that it would be the Judgements since they regularly enforce the laws that prevent the Is-Not from spilling over the reality, but it could from a specific one or a different party altogether. The cats are incredibly prideful and are not immune to Fingerking temptations as seen with the Rapacious Prince from &quotBorrowed Glory&quot and the King of Cats of this story, so they must respect this entity a great deal. It also must be powerful enough to grant them an alternate form in Parabola to fight against the Fingerkings in the first place.

  2. Where did the Fingerkings come from? I know the story about how Fingerkings bargained with Devils and want to be real, but if there is an origin to the cats, there is definitely one for the Fingerkings. Were they born from the egg that gave birth to Parabola? The culmination of treacherous dreams that eventually manifested themselves as snakes? Regardless, something this powerful does not come out of nothing, and I would like to learn more about Fingerking history in the future.

[/spoiler][/quote]

  1. It’s not entirely clear, but there are hints it is Stone, the half-Sun half-Bazaar mountain of light who rules at the far south and that is probably the nicest god in the Neath. Mainly from the Court of the Wakeful Eye content: If you sail to the Court proper and take tea with the Minister of Enigmas, he alludes to everything ending and the tigers having had a purpose they’re supposed to fulfil, while the Minister of Culture alludes to the tigers knowing why they’re more intelligent than their surface cousins and the Minister of State Affairs to how the tigers share a common enemy with Londoners. And the fall mentioned in some of the tiger lore introduced in this ES seems to suggest cats and tigers shared a common cause before the schism. Most tellingly of all, if you should offer a Mountain-Shard (a piece of Stone) to the Tiger-Keeper (a tiger charged with keeping Fingerking-posessed people caged, among other things), he has the following reaction:

(When you present it, the Tiger Keeper scarce allows himself to breathe. A tear in his eye, bright as the jewel, forms and falls. &quotYou do not know,&quot he says. And then, something of a prayer: &quotSo we were raised; so we shall serve our purpose.&quot)

  1. Now, THAT is definitely still unclear I think. Back when Knife-and-Candle was still a thing, there was an allusion to Fingerkings striking a bargain with devils to create prisoner’s honey. From Sunless Skies, the Prophet Exile’s own account highly it implies it was a Fingerking or something similar before it was turned into a story, if you ponder the entity’s past. So at least one may have given the Judgements considerable trouble in the form of the basis for the Liberation of Night. But then, Skies also indicates the Curators (the space bat species the Masters belong to) remember a time before the Judgements’ reign. In conclusion, all we really know about the origin of Fingerkings is that they’ve been around for a while.