Leafiara (prime)/Tales/A Rolling Rone Gathers No Moss, or, Re-Outmaneuvering Oneself
Original Story: Imaerasta 10, 5120
Imaerasta 6th - Night of the Verdict
Leafiara staggered back to her office and sat heavily down in one of her chairs.
I expected a win for both sides... either Thadston was unfit and was overstepping or he was fit and wasn't overstepping. Is this what it feels like to be Grishom Stone? Stand back and let others do my work for me? The Enclave seriously just--
She laughed to herself softly, tiredly, deliriously.
...no... if Stone had done that, it would have been intentional. All I did was outmaneuver myself on accident. Now I'm stuck with the Rook rumors because not only is Thadston out, but Judge Renpaw just established that our public officials don't need transparency. Surely Mother's going to swoop in and offer her services now, right? "The marshal doesn't have more leeway than the mayor." Not in so many words, but she'll say something just like that and then what do I do?
I outmaneuvered myself on accident, she chided herself again, and now I have to outmaneuver 'myself' on purpose. Mother seems to think very similarly to me, so she must see the opportunity in the logic here. If she wants to take advantage, then how do I convince her otherwise--
Wait. I've always wondered if we truly think alike or if it's just been a long series of coincidences. If the captains are right, it could even be nothing more than too much optimism on my part. Either way, this might be the best chance for a test. If we think as similarly as I believe, then she'll understand everything I was trying to accomplish with the hearing. In that case, she won't broach the subject or try to strike a deal. It's like how Pukk and I were betting on how shortly after inauguration day she'd show up and offer me a deal, only for no such thing to ever happen.
She let out a sigh.
...but the problem is what if I'm wrong.
Imaerasta 7th - Night of a Struggle
She gave a muffled chuckle into her bed.
I can't keep going like this. No sign of Mother, but I can't wait. I have to preempt her, but how? It has to be something unexpected and dramatic. I don't want her offering me a deal, so if I can work a distraction in addition to problems she's already facing with this new faction, she'll have more pressing matters...
Imaerasta 8th - Night of a Dialogue
Xorus asks, "Is there a betting pool on Rone's identity?" Speaking amusedly to Xorus, Leafiara says, "Probably." Leafiara admits, "I haven't really thought about it. Faerinn thinks Casiphia." Xorus asks, "Is he giving three to one odds on it?" Leafiara says, "Though Hap and I did somehow each separately reach the conclusion that Rone and Mother could be the same person, months ago." Leafiara says, "I have thought about Mother's identity before, so if they really were the same person then my theories would be Larsya from the future, Surofee, me from the future, and Alendrial." Speaking softly to Leafiara, Marijka repeats, "You from the future." Speaking to Leafiara, Hapenlok says, "No, she's too serene to be you from the future." Speaking insistently to Marijka, Leafiara says, "It would explain why Thadston keeps saying I'm the leader of the Rooks." Speaking to Leafiara, Hapenlok says, "She's not exactly a person who embraces chaos." Xorus says, "The King is dead. Long live the Queen." Speaking carefully to Leafiara, Marijka says, "That theory is one to which I will extend due consideration." Chaoswynd idly says, "Eh, it's probably Surofee, or Walkar's sister, who miraculously didn't die after all, or something else along those lines." Speaking surprisedly to Chaoswynd, Leafiara asks, "Oh, you buy into the Surofee theory too then?" Speaking suspiciously to Chaoswynd, Leafiara says, "I thought I was the only one who seriously believed that." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "Not so much buy into, as just don't care one way or the other." Speaking accusingly to Chaoswynd, Leafiara says, "Boring." Leafiara says, "I've actually never seen this Rone kill anyone." Speaking to Leafiara, Marijka says, "That's depressing." Leafiara muses, "Sure have seen them make a lot of rescues though." Speaking suddenly to Leafiara, Marijka says, "But it's also a good mislead." Leafiara suspiciously says, "...huh. Maybe Mother and Rone really are the same person and that person is me. From the future." Leafiara says, "...this sounds like something I'd do." Speaking to Leafiara, Hapenlok says, "Now you're just indulging your ego." Speaking to Leafiara, Marijka suggests, "Some of my coolness under fire must have rubbed off on you." Speaking to Leafiara, Uskeye says, "Have you slept lately, Mayor." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "Refer back to a previous statement from Mother, regarding her and another party not being amused by Lylia's response to a situation." Speaking wryly to Uskeye, Leafiara says, "No, actually, have had a pretty tough time sleeping while thinking about who could have been behind the courtroom attack." Speaking to Leafiara, Uskeye says, "While I find events here in the Landing to be confusing most of the time, THAT particular theory might be a little too far down the rabbit hole." Speaking to Chaoswynd, Leafiara says, "I've figured... if she's Alendrial, the other person is Stephos. If she's Casiphia, then Thadston. If she's Larsya or me, then her younger self." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "Mm, no, she was clearly referring to Rone. As in, Mother and Rone are not amused with the way something was handled." Speaking to Chaoswynd, Leafiara says, "I thought you were talking about when Lylia stormed off one night and Mother said it was a shame, since "we both" liked her." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "That would be another instance, yes." Speaking slowly to Chaoswynd, Leafiara says, "So there was another instance? Hmm." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "Which occurred shortly after a Rone sighting, so really too much of a coincidence." Speaking understandingly to Chaoswynd, Leafiara concludes, "Oh, good, so you're on board with the theory that they're the same person." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "No, I'm stating that they aren't." Speaking to Chaoswynd, Leafiara insists, "You are so boring sometimes, seriously." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "It would be far too convenient, and contrived, for them to be the same person." Leafiara emphasizes, "I'm just saying, we've never seen them together and have never had any sighting of Rone attacking the Rooks even though Mother claims she's a thorn." Leafiara musingly says, "...this does give me an idea, though." Hapenlok says, "Oh, boy. We're in trouble." Speaking to Leafiara, Chaoswynd says, "I think you're forgetting a point that you made earlier: Rone hasn't killed anyone, as far as you're aware. Yet Mother has. In cold blood." Leafiara says, "Renpaw essentially just set precedent that the marshal can work with whoever he wishes to protect the town." Leafiara says, "If that extends to the mayor as well..." Leafiara says, "Then in theory I could ask for Rone's aid and see how Mother responds."
Imaerasta 10th - Afternoon of a Challenge
Posted outside Moot Hall:
To the vigilante Rone, I'd like a meeting to learn more about you and I'm potentially interested in working with you. I have reason to believe you've had past conflicts with the Rooks, so I'm printing publicly, right here, that I'm asking both of you to put aside whatever differences you might have at least for the time being while our town is facing an unknown enemy. Nonetheless, Rone, if you have concerns for your safety, the choice of meeting time, place, or method is yours. It needn't even be in person if you'd prefer a discussion at a distance over thoughts. In case you're wondering why now, the timing is right following Thadston's recent hearing. Last month, the town council and now-former marshal expressed a willingness to overlook your methods if you had aided with the capture of Malluch Burdos. At the time I balked and found that legally questionable. However, with Renpaw's verdict, the hearing established that Thadston was within his rights to execute covert operations and appoint special task forces, and therefore almost certainly within his rights to work with you. I take it that the same applies to the rest of the town council who backed Thadston's plan, as well as to the mayor, and so I'm free to extend offers to you. So, with that in mind, I believe it's time we seriously consider the option of a Rone who works with the Landing instead of the previous situations of working against it or adjacent to it. It's possible that we won't be able to come to terms, but I'd like to believe we can. There's a great deal we can accomplish together. Yours, Mayor Leafiara
Perfect. If I'm guessing correctly, Rone won't respond or at very least will respond and say no deal, preferring freedom as a vigilante. I'm fine with any or no Rone response. The real question is whether Mother will respond and how. If she was expecting me to extend an offer to her or biding her time to extend an offer to me, then will she take it as a "betrayal" that I've approached Rone instead?