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Messages - Dremora
I am behind any development of a dynamic quest generator or system. Its good for downtime when player numbers are small due to a lack of things to do outside of RP/XP/CXP. It's also pretty good for people in the area to group together and travel, as well as providing some material to RP over; not to mention it makes use of NPCs that are scattered about Layonara but really serve no valuable purpose. Huzzah!
I have been thinking much the same thing after my latest excursions with others between Ft. Thunder and Great Forest. The loot is less than inspiring I must say with a focus on coin drops (around 50 pieces) every third kill or so.
//Nym traded in 23 raw diamonds for 23000 credit to add to his Sar'thaal account that has 400 in it as of the last transaction. Purchased (wholly with credit) Cloak of Fort +2 and Cobalt T Shield for 18000 - 10% = 16200. Remainder should be 7200.
Edit: Seems in my rush I miscalculated 10% as 1 % -.-
After a period of rest to gather himself, and while everyone is pre-occupied with their various actions and trails of thought; the dark elf disappears from the crystal chamber and group. Upon reaching the tunnel with the diety statues, he becomes invisible and darts off a unnatural speed upon drawing a blade. He said nothing to anyone.
« on: January 29, 2015, 12:25:30 pm »
He tried to turn his eyes from her guilt-laden expression as Breanna's lips moved and spoke echoes of the past into his ears. He knew it had been a clear night, a bright moon and plenty of stars to illuminate the darkness, he could see in his mind, the layout of the trees and hills near the boathouse. But it was no use, the past is set, and one cannot change their actions to remedy mistakes. He would never scrutinise the tree line to see where they were hiding, nor would he ever be able to react quick enough to the faint whistling. This was to end as it began, and as he had seen a hundred times over: his hand on Breanna's throat as she confesses her treachery; her eyes wide with tears and fear; the sound of something whistling through the trees; the fireworks of pain that shot through his body as armour piercing bolts punctured meat, muscle and bone to cripple him. Always three bolts; one for his leg, one for his arm, and the one that went wide. He released Breanna as pain and confusion left him unbalanced and reaching for his weapons. He could see them now in the darkness, a split second before the tree line erupted with innumerable guards. All this for him? He recalled perfectly how his vision began to swim even as his head railed in wonder at his then-perceived end.
The rush of humans was punctuated only by the brief halt to loose another volley of bolts, and Nym saw as his shield was hauled into position just in time to shudder with the impacts. Pain flared in his wounded arm now as it did then, his nerves sympathising with what he was seeing in a way he wished they would not. Then his vision was restored and a tide of angry human faces washed down onto him.
Breanna's screams for him to stop and surrender, and for the humans not to hurt him fell on deaf ears to all then; only here in the mind could he review and register her pleading but he cared nothing for it now as he would have then. His blade rose up to block a downward arc of a mace, the force causing him to back-pedal and stumble on his injured leg. A jarring wave of force could be felt, shoving his shield against his chest from the impact of another's weapon while the whistling in his left ear and the warm bloom hinted at a near miss from a third. The pain was sudden and adrenaline had no time to truly take hold; he felt it all as he found himself pressed on three sides, blocking and parrying to preserve his life while the humans began encircling him. It was then that the savagery in him mixed with the tactical sense, causing him to back pedal further towards the boathouse while lunging to the human that had gotten behind him in the press. He knew to never let himself be backed up and on the defensive when outnumbered. It caught the man by surprise, and his attempt to raise his shield while his sword angled down failed to save him. Nym's keen blade and panicked rage cleaved a path through the wooden fore and boss before settling in the throat. Being slid free while the dark elf stumbled in a half-spin to face his pursuers, he saw the odds against him; he saw the phantom soldiers of Fort Wayfare numbered in roughly twenty, between the circle that was closing on him and the bolts that occasionally flew into press from over their shoulders. Hopeless, but too proud and hot-blooded to surrender. It was not long now, they corralled him eventually against the boathouse, but the bottleneck was to cost them another of their own and a wealth of injuries before they cut him up and knocked him out. With the blackness enveloping the memory, his mind shuddered and reeled as it avoided the draw of the unconsciousness. Nym often felt such memories that ended in blackouts or death were like stepping around quicksand. When he awoke, it was in a cell.
He recalled pacing like an animal in that tiny cell, chained loosely to a wall but allowed the freedom to walk the majority of his room, as well as sit and stand. He had no interest in this, and so his mind wandered through the images, of guards visiting and questioning him regularly to no avail. He discovered that he was not the only one captured thanks to Breanna, discovered that dark elves were causing havoc in the Silkwood, and how the humans wanted their cooperation to aid them against their dark kin and get at who they believed responsible: Ni'haer. He recalled the threats, with which he answered with mocks and insults. Human soldiers seemed so pathetic, trying to scare him with charges of murder and execution because he killed one or two of their kind when they attacked him. To this day he marvelled at their complete lack of common sense, he would not give them what they wanted, nor would he cry for their dead, nor feel shame for his actions. What he did understand, was bitterness .He could remember it without a reverie, but felt it as clearly as he felt the manacles around his wrists in reverie. Bitterness over betrayal, over knowing he deserved his fate to trust in a Dar'thiir, and to have not suspected a trap of some kind. It was his first, his first true grudge against a light elf. An image flashed, of his wrist up close and weeping crimson from where he chewed the flesh open. He knew about the gambit, the weakness it would cause and suspicion that he was attempting suicide. He knew it would draw them in while he pretended to be unconscious, draw them close. It always did.
The guard captain had returned, bringing along a pair of his men; ones Nym recalled as polar opposites to one another: The more slender man was disciplined, watchful and took himself seriously; the more burly man was non-chalant, undisciplined and relied on his (impressive) size to bully prisoners. He would never know why they sought him out, but when their calls were met with motionless silence, they entered swiftly to check on the prisoner who lay as if dead. Nym's memory was nothing of sight, but of his other senses, of touch and smell and heat as his skin registered the proximity of a torch being drawn near to him. His lids illuminated through the thin layer of skin and he knew that soon the guard captain would resort to beating the him as a way to rouse his prisoner. That kick ended as it always did, trapped in Nym's lurking hands as the elf's crimson eyes opened and glittered up at his tormentors with malice.
Violence and chaos followed next, scuffles and swings of the club-like torch to get the young dark elf to release their captain led only to a sinister darkness blotting out even the torchlight. The sounds of shouting, burning, rattling chains and meat being 'tenderised' was all the stimuli anyone would find as long as the spell held. Feet and fists exchanged with each other as Nym came face to face with the chief tormentor of this memory, rolling and wrestling while he remained shackled to his cell wall. He knew the guards were fumbling about with his clothing, trying to discern captain from prisoner before further confusion erupted from the rolling and flailing limbs. He knew because he could still feel their grasping paws on him as the foul odour of the captain filled his nostrils. Frustration, real and present, surged in his mind as it was forced to relive the struggle and the failed attempt to drive the Captain's nose up into his brainpan; had he succeeded the other two would have been easy pickings for Nym, even when bound to a wall. But as with every other memory, the perfect clarity that hindsight provides will never change past errors. The Captain survived, though he rolled away with a stream of red rushing from his nostrils. He would have bruising and black eyes by the day's end. Somewhere in the chaos Nym remembered his leg kicking out the torch as he rose to his feet and tore at the rags that had since been set alight. His skin burned and blistered and yet in the rush of adrenaline, he could not feel any severe pain, only the pounding of blood into every muscle and the thunder of it in his head.
A brief pause in the melee..
It was then that the darkness fell, and the pacifiers came out, rushed by the three men, the elf's comparatively fragile body bruised and burned easily, skin parting under the bludgeoned weapons even as their impact left his bones with fractures. He should have been broken in agony, but the cornered animal fights the hardest. Forced to defend himself, he would often hunker down and takes the blows, before lashing out at eyes and throats with a fist or questing fingers, but in the end, it was the slop bucket that he put his trust in. Kicking it over to make the clumsy humans lose balance. The slender one slipped up nearly end over end, and landed hard on his back. Nym then saw himself crossing the cell to the limits of his chain length his foot comes down hard on the man's throat; and so he saw once more, the fear and broken dreams of another life being cut short. A brief moment of triumph to stave off the end he knew was coming, he had no chance of escape in such a state, and the humans assaulted him with a renewed vigour. He could only marvel and writhe in pain as he took levels of punishment that very few elves could likely survive. There was little else to remember in such a time, the anchor had been passed, but he let his mind wander past the black hole of unconsciousness that spanned days in the infirmary. The days spent fighting against those trying to feed him, or the time Breanna came in to mewl her apologies and give pathetic reasons. He despised it all, but searched instead for the memory of a particular visitor. Was it the one he sought? No, the skin was pale, her hair dark and the aura of magic emanated strongly from her: Fleur. Checking up on him he knew, and so he moved on before the words they exchanged could be made out. He still had her token to keep his mind safe, and wondered briefly what became of her.
The echoes of anger and pain began to dim, and this drew the weary eye of his mind to the source. He had found his mystery visitor: The traitor, the one who had the power to dispel his hatred and malice just by being near him. The one who could speak to him of healing and yet try to relate with talk of tactics, war and life in the Deep. She was an oddity, and he regretted that the humans murdered her before he could at least discover if she was genuine, or a trick by Ni'haer. He had his suspicions, but they conflicted with his gut instinct.. but none of this mattered. It was time to move on.
Having no desire to recall the pit-spawn rescuing him, those images whirled by in a flurry; only small flashes could be seen: the tiles travelling beneath him as he was dragged from his cell, the blue-skin and masked face of the giant that was Coin, the burn of sunlight on his eyes and skin, and the vial of blood. He knew he was to be tortured when Coin returned him to his old Master, and tortured he was. But none of that mattered anymore, he wanted to find Her; and she was not near.
His eyes fluttered open as the reverie was broken by a flare of pain in his chest, but he soon closed them again and slipped back into the ether. He took control of his thoughts for a brief stint and raced through time to find the Crusade. She and it were tied, and it would help to guide him.
« on: January 26, 2015, 09:30:03 am »
"Taking too long..", were the slurred words that came out in a mumble from Nym's lips in the real world as he made his way through the ghosts of the past. In a flash he caught a glimpse of pale flesh quivering beneath his hands, and it caused him to hope against logic that he was here. But the skin was too pale, the hair dark, and the eyes as terrified as intrigued by what was happening in her quarters. This memory he knew was of her seduction, and their secret tryst inside the Caliomel Trade House.
"Not Her", though he had faltered now, and so before his struggle to regain control would be one, he knew which memories of her would be unavoidable - the most powerful..
Breanna Shadowraven; the virgin, the meek, the traitor, once a 'friend' and once the mother of his unborn child. She loved him once, that unique brand of torment that the surface-born cling to so passionately. He had many a memory of her, from lover's sighs to light hearted laughter, to memories of promise when she came to confide in him and seek advice about how to handle the rejection of her 'friends'. He recalled their moonlit walks near the Lakes of Mistone and their hunts together. They had done many things together, but he had always kept her blind-folded about what he did for his Master, as blind-folded as when he first seduced her in Fort Wayfare. As he looked back over the hundred soul-searching looks she gave the one she loved, he recognised that his secrecy is perhaps why her unwavering in faith in him began to become more finite. She was not entirely alone however, there was another she-elf, a stronger one, one with golden hair and a sharp tongue. Hers was a more fierce soul than the more demure version Breanna possessed. She was Breanna's friend, but she was not the memory he sought for.. her eyes were not liquid gold. She was another lover of the past, a stronger one.. Calylith. But that was not now, not yet, and not what he was searching for.
Together the three of them enjoyed good times on the surface, living one life in the light while he lived another alone and in the darkness. For every laugh, touch and glitter of the eyes shared under the sun, at night he sacrificed Dar'thiiri hunters to the Lord of Spiders. He served his Master and his God, honing his skills and keeping a part of himself for the darkness, lest dread Baraeon come for his wayward 'mercenary'. Calylith suspected however, he could remember it a thousand times in the looks she would give him when she thought he was not watching. The recollection led him to feel something build, as if particular memory was about to surge forth to meet him as she opened her spectral lips to speak; and then they were alone by a river in nothing but their skin and each other's arms. He felt the sting of the sun in his eyes and prickling along his ebon flesh, but her voice never past those animated lips. He was curious now, he wanted to remember what she was going to ask him after their intimacy, he hated that he could not recall while they lay together with his fingers stroking the length of her delicate neck.. but he had lost control and the maelstrom of past lives returned.
Eventually, his mind skids to a halt, seeing Breanna running towards him as she saw his approaching form on a dark road; she clasped his hands and told him she was with child.. and it was his. He saw her now as he did then, filled with inexplicable joy at something that would make her life harder, her body more dependent and her relationship with him more public. She loved that promise of a child with an irrationality that he knew he was failing to hide on his expression. It fortified the doubt he knew now was building in her. Calylith, the one who he thought was Her for a moment, was there soon after. Night had turned to day and the lakeside had turned verdant hills. He desired to turn and gain his bearings, though he had no power over the eyes of the past with which he must always see through. The memory went on as Calylith and Breanna spoke at length about his suggestion.. and he remembered where they were: Dregar. The giants. They spoke of Breanna and Calylith together, raising Nym's child. He had brought them close to him, lured them to one another and himself and so what was a duo had become a trio bound by intimacy, lust, and for some by love. He tried to stay rooted in the memory but it was useless, the end was known to him now even if it was not then; in blood, tears, a bindstone for Breanna and a fractured happiness for the paleskin lovers he kept so close. He felt numb then as he did now, the thought of a child did not particularly stir him then as it once did in the future, nor does it stir him now as he lies on the bed in a state that an onlooker might mistake for death. He did not care about the child's destruction, only Breanna and Calylith. But Breanna cared, and he could sense a well of bitterness rising in his corporeal chest as he subconsciously prepared for the inevitable flashback.
With some semblance of control he forces himself past every other memory, happy, sad, dark, or light; wishing to reach the next anchor if only to get past it: midnight on Lake Splendour.
Not a thread I am known to use - mainly because it means I forgot to thank people myself but: Tobias and Zarianna, take a bow folks because we had some great (and sad) RP. Mini demon Nym is proud of you Toby.. and of Zarianna's ability to really twist the knife of guilt-trips.
« on: January 26, 2015, 07:35:40 am »
Nym's body lay across the bed still, unmoving except for the rise and fall of his chest beneath his breastplate. Slowly but surely he could feel the sickness fading away further and further as he skimmed the memories of his comparatively short life at break neck speed. Seeing only flashes and moments that were randomly chosen or significant enough to draw his eye without intention.
The first dark skinned face, as beautiful as it was terrible,; looked upon him and judged his worth. He recognised her now though he did not then for what she would be: the Mother of Spiders. Days upon the surface, foraging and robbing to feed himself culminated in being drawn to a strange stone surrounded by blood-red flowers. He had never seen a flower before, nor grass, nor sky, nor sun. But when he awoke from touching it, the next flash of memory was always of Solena. The mocking priestess and his guide into the shadow of her Master.
Ni'haer, the sense of arcane power radiated from him just by being in his presence, the sorcerer who gave Nym'roos a place and a purpose. Another father-figure to approve, disapprove, use and judge. At his side, the Priestess Solena with the cruel smiles and the whispers into Ni'haer's ear. He wonders, then and now, how much of what the G'elderin did was not in some way influenced by her voice; and then there was always her own personal shadow: Velkyn, the one who liked to cut flesh while it was still alive and marvel at his artwork. He recalled their predatory eyes shining in the night as they evaluated him. In words, deeds, and he could have sworn thoughts, he was weighed. But they were all gone now, dead or deep beneath the earth. So his mind then drifts from their meeting, to the sealing of their pact and the oath of service to the House.. the House hidden in the city. The House filled with darkness, spiders, dark elves and thoughts of murder.
"Nec'perya d'Oloth"; his lips worked in the real world, giving voice to the symbol of his chains.
That 'sanctum' was where he could be himself.. once.. and not one of the myriad of personae he was forced to construct and don for public appearance on the surface. A mercenary was how he felt, and so a mercenary was the easiest form to assume, and with that he wandered the surface with his features hidden in cloth, shadow and metal. It was through those eyes that he could see the scenes of murder and battle again; the screaming and stink of a battlefield. Allies and enemies bleeding and dying in a carnage that had no purpose beyond honing the survivors.. making them stronger. It was with those eyes that he first saw the she-elf that would highlight his weakness to him. He did not hate as he was moulded to, someone somewhere had failed and he was the result. He never thought much on it back then, but now he knew this was when he should have first realised and purged the flaw.
He knew her to be Keela Moonflower, a tamed Sylvan tied to the Ilsaran Sehky. The one he took into the darkness to torture, but instead decided on healing and saving. He could vaguely recall the logic in his mind as he mended the rent flesh, studied her form. Thoughts of blending in, getting close to the betrayers or simply gaining more allies to make his persona believable to sceptics. It made sense then, it worked as well, but as he looks back over the memories of her lying there and moaning in pain beneath him; he knows deep down he simply lacked the desire to go through with his original, 'expected' intentions. That she-elf was the one who taught him the meaning of 'friends'. Something he never managed to put into practise well, even if the theory behind it could be understood. He knew how such a chapter would end however, even then. He could hear the arguments again, see the pointed arrows from Sehky and his ilk, feel the close call with death when they cornered him in Vehl and attempted to murder him. Phantom pain wormed itself through points on his leg and back, remembering the bite of arrows as he fled under darkness and haste. These memories did not faze him, nor was he truly surprised then or upset now. But it taught him the weakness in their kind as well, how they were incapable of acting without approval of the whole. A woeful absence of independence, of flexibility. There were other memories of the wildling she-elf, and he knew in the back of his thoughts that he would miss them in his frenzied search for the memories he wanted to reach. He had a way to go, and he wishes to himself he had the mental composure to guide himself as effortlessly as he might do in good health.
« on: January 21, 2015, 11:03:07 am »
Images flashed in front of his eyes, images of sights long past and feelings long gone. Flashes of darkness and of pain and of malice. His mind had been wandering without focus, for rebirth by the Stone had robbed him of it. It was the earliest memories he was remembering, the one's of innocence lost. The servants milling around him and preparing him for his venture to the academies, the nerves and fear that made his heart hammer against the ribcage as if it were prison bars preventing an escape. He remembered the feel of his shaking hands, the buckling in his legs, with such clarity he was reliving it; barely twenty years but physically matured enough to withstand the brutalities of his new path. The memory felt wrong, hollowing and sickly in the way that paralytic levels of fear could make one feel and so his mind retreated from it, bypassing a wealth of memories in flashes. The look on his brother's face as he smiled down cruelly on his baby brother and stroked his head before locking the door and shattering any chance of escape "No tears please little brother, it is a waste of good suffering". The sounds of his sister being tormented. Flashes of screaming slaves and sadistic handlers. The contempt in his father's eyes when he sentenced his son to their adulthood. The humiliations and abuse everyone inflicted on everyone, it was all something he did not need to see again, for he could recall it all in the darkest recesses of his mind without the aid of reverie.
His mind eventually halted its fevered rush amongst the memories of the academies: His lack of natural aptitude for the arcane and the subsequent transfer to tutors of warfare and blade work. The feeling of alienation as he left with those that the mages refused. He remembered walking with the others, boys and girls though the overwhelming majority was of the taller, stronger latter. He recalled their new overseers, the look in their eyes as they separated the ore from the slag, the strong from the weak. This was not where he wanted to be, so his mind began to speed along once more, interrupted only by slips in concentration and lapses into random moments in training. He saw the speeches, the warnings, about how only a select few would survive the process either because of the predators amongst their peers or the regime itself. Looking back at the phantoms of his peers, he saw again how at the beginning many of the girls and boys looked the same, a hard surface to hide the fear and insecurity beneath. His reverie brought him back to images of the trials, the training, the tears that spilt and marked children as forever weak before they were executed by the Overseers or fed to the war beasts while they still kicked and screamed. He caught these glimpses of memory through younger eyes that gradually learned to not strain and puff with the threat of tears from anything but exceptional physical pain. "Pain is transitory". He heard and knew those words and how it moulded the survivors; how the males instinctively felt the predatory stares of their female competitors who were the stronger, but less favoured, gender in the stronghold. He could feel again, their stares, and he knew he and the others had all stared back. It came from the flaying, the beating, the torture of slaves, the testing of various weapons on living flesh that whimpered and pleaded for them to stop. It came from the fighting over dinner, the rocks that broke bones and bruised meat as they wrestled, clawed and fought with training weapons, the murders and those who were caught murdering and were punished for their clumsiness. It came when children killed children for approval and praise and succour over pain. It came from innocence lost.
The whirlwind of memories was a comfort to him, for if he never settled in one place too long, he would never have to experience the full force of emotions that one feels from revisiting such memories. Seeing the trials, the running and the pounding of adrenaline through his muscles, and across his skin; it made his heart beat faster in his chest even as he lay on the bed motionless and safe. This was not the place he wanted to be.
His elevation among the other students, entering the caste of warriors destined for close quarter heavy fighting, one of two males amongst a host of females, their compatriots having all died off or been sequestered into the scouts. The specialised weapons training, the unconventional tactics, lessons on fighting alone and yet as a whole. The way of war and the way of slaughter. The honour of his people, if you could call it that. The way that praised creativity and unconventional tactics, guile and ruthlessness and punished anything else as shameful to their kind; something to be culled and buried lest it infect those that were strong. His final trials, where he killed his ally Velenial at the end of a team deathmatch, a knife through the back and into the heart.. guided by his hand, but held by the hand of one of their foes. An accident, self-preservation, a lie. They liked it, and his punishment was light. A run through the gauntlet with the failed would-be poisoner, the slowest to be caught by the beasts; not he, her.
"Pain is transitory. He was a fool for giving his back to me so close to victory. I know he wanted me dead... they all do."
Words spoken together by a long past Dark Elven child and the scarred young adult that he became. The memory then faded away in silence and under the approving stares of his tutors. Cull two thirds and you never lose many to the Test, no slag. It all fades to a blur, his first missions, his time away, the ambush that saw Kar'shak torn apart. "No tears big brother..", his grin, his fear, and the escape; weeks of starving and wandering the Deep like a feral outcast before his emaciated form stumbled out into the blinding light for the very first time. His new Hell.
« on: January 20, 2015, 10:51:34 pm »
Nym walked into his old den in something of a daze; his body did not fit well in his skin, and his thoughts would not stop racing. He felt sick, and he felt weak. Death had a way of doing that to the best, but he could feel the sickness of death only in the back of his mind, it was barely worth acknowledging.
Across the tables he could see maps that had begun to collect a little bit of dust, maps that he knew outlined mysterious points on Alindor as well as cryptic short-form reminders in Dark Elvish. A small part of him wanted distraction, but his mind raced in bursts of imagery, seeing the sunshine blinding him as the darkness fell away, the blood that sparkled from his wounds as he lay upon his back. The fading shadow of his killer and now his final gambit. The image of golden hair cascading down shoulders concealed in white, small twigs andleaves stranded in it's sunburst falls. The image of two orbs of liquid gold, and the way they looked to him. It made the maps meaningless and so he walked right by those fruits of his labours, the rewards of treachery, assassination and sabotage. He walked by it all just to lie down on the bed in his bloodied armour and close his eyes. He was going to reverie, forever.. if he could.. about those precious few moments and the one night that gave birth to a whole new persona. A persona, or the true him, he could not say. He was too sick to say and too afraid to search himself and know it might have died. Whatever it was, now it stands in the shadows of his mind with all the others, amongst the fictons and the truths about who he is.
He thought it strange, how when something ended, one thinks of how something started. How thoughts of twilight turned to thoughts of dawn. He wondered now if he could find his way through the maze of pain and cruelly shattered dreams, past and the forging of himself to get back there tonight. It was fresh, fresh like the phantom pains that burned his body and his face, and blurred the vision of his left eye; he slipped away thinking it rather likely.
Had a quick read and find myself strongly against the idea of closing down CDQs, the reasons being as follows:
My first point would be that CDQs are private quests for one or a small number of companions to pursue personal goals, the key word being personal. Why is this a valuable tool? It is valuable because it enables you do pursue things of interest to your character and their allies in order to develop and achieve whatever cool perks it is your after be it title or shiny violin. These are supposed to be applied for only when a GM is necessary to achieve something that can not be achieved on your own. As far as I understand it, unless you go to another PC to formally uplift you or grant you whatever you want, or you can craft it or grind for it; CDQ time! Its an RP server with a rich lore and a story-telling core, that means personalized quests that develop ones character are valuable, removing them is a bad idea and even if you do come up with an alternative method.. why should you eliminate an ingame presence as opposed to simply expand your options? All you achieve is a empty server and even if your character is currently unavailable, more people online tends to encourage more to log in.
In terms of expanding options, as apart of my CDQ series, not everything was achieved on the NWN server in game. RP was done via the IRC with the GM in a room and all of it was RP and rolls using the digital dice functions to progress the personal story arc. Alternatives are seeking out and RPing with World Leaders if they are relevent or creating new characters with a group of players and agreeing to spend time working together to achieve and ingame guild so you can grant things suggest by Aphel to upcoming rangers for example. If player number is an issue, well then CDQs can solve the problem as he said.
It should also be noted that public quests themselves are not always chase the cat series and they also do not have to be long running series set on a particular day all the time that can advance one's character. During my CDQ series there was a chance for involvement of many outside players through an unmentioned (but alluded too OOC) link between the actions my character had done and the response of NPCs. Essentially a public quest spawned of Nym's IC actions, where what I did and how I did affected the difficulty and circumstances you might find yourselves in (this opportunity has arisen more than once now). That to me screams of multiple-character involvement AND development. Even singular quests that do not advance anywhere else can lead to developments in your character that can be pursued later, especially if you speak to a GM who announces a quest in advance of what character youll be bringing. Maybe they can tailor things to provide unique opportunities for similariites in the groups? For those who believe in the phrase "Nullius In Verba" (probably spelt that wrong), I pursued a quest that had two parts of which I only attended one; to acquire objects for a particular noble guy from a city. The end result was a writ of patronage where that lordling owed me any one singular favor within reason for the part I played. Ta-da, I just forged an albeit temporary debt and alliegance with a nobleman to use as I see fit pursuing, continuing or helping out another PC in, development (Pseudonym can confirm this and I even have the writ IC if he needs a reminder).
It should also be noted that having spoken to both Alatriel and Miltonyorkcastle, I know for a fact that CDQs consume time on the side of GMs as opposed to us, what do I mean by that? I mean that my desire for another CDQ in a different direction this time with a buddy would be on a waiting list behind/around public quests, other CDQs and of course real life obligation. So why stop people from applying for CDQs when they should not detract from public quest time? Can you be certain that CDQs are infact stopping GMs from holding public quests that they might want to? If so whats stopping the GM making it known that he intends to hold something around that time and will be willing to run you a CDQ after? Nothing really, seems awfully unfair to presume one should come before many especially if plans were already in motion. It is also not uncommon for GMs to temporarily shut down running CDQs in order to concentrate on other projects be they stand alone or series, we have seen this done before too. Nothing said so far has actually indicated a good reason (in my opinion) for shutting down the CDQ system, the only thing I agree with is that character development can be done in other ways (IRC, PC RP, etc). When these are not options, the GMs step in.
Lastly on account of closed CDQs with only one or more people, this is simply a product of cliques. Groups of players forming factions that lock out others whom are not deemed suitable, worthy whatever. It makes sense that evil people do not invite good people to witness their dastardly deeds and vice versa (provided one side knows the other is what they are) and its just simply the way it is. The only solution to this I see is players and their GMs find ways to include others in their CDQs, maybe even as opposing forces to include more people. Many times do people who do not get along simply walk away from one another because the characters would not tolerate the presence of the other. Generally I try to avoid this and find some reason to stay in the area if only for RP and I know others do too but not everyone, but sometimes RP reaches a point at which your character really would either kill the other person or leave (why not RP out a little duel and fight and end it creatively other than someone being corpsified). If you want more people involved, then everyone needs to ensure they put effort into Rping with passer-bys as opposed to running by to grind something or buy/sell things. If not then obviously there will be less RP and less development between PCs and then you've got less people to take along for the ride and are more likely to do things by yourself than not.
P.S Just thought of this: its related to factoring people in as opposing forces but lets say OOC players enjoy Rping with one another, but would'nt necessarily contact one another character-wise for help with something (they arent enemies IC though). One could talk to the player and GM in order to organise some sort of convenient circumstance in which character B is in the right place at the right time, for whatever plausible reason, during character A's CDQ in order to join up and help out (and benefit from perhaps?). I can think of examples where Jehoram might have been in Arnax at the time and it was my bad for not thinking of this and then asking whether he would or would not like to get in on the action going on with Nym and mercenary guilds and gangs. Could have been fun, they could have developed that way as characters together and both enjoyed a CDQ even if Nym would not necessarily go out of his way to get a message to the Corathite. Just a thought and very dependant on context and individuals involved but theres a suggestion for people to ponder.
A VERY BIG Thankyou to the GM who decided to remain Anonymous and return the reward to the community. I would've slapped them and said take the reward you silly person, its a gift but since they aren't, I believe they deserve special mention So once again, your generosity is appreciated .