Brent | Angélique
𝕊𝕖𝕡𝕥. 𝟙𝟜, 𝟚𝟘𝟚𝟘 / / 𝕌𝕊𝔸ℝ𝕀𝕃ℕ 𝔼𝕒𝕤𝕥 / / 𝔻𝕚𝕟𝕟𝕚𝕟𝕘 ℍ𝕒𝕝𝕝 / / ~𝟘𝟟𝟛𝟘
Collab by @Riffus Maximus @ERode
Angel's bubble burst when she heard a familiar voice near where she was sitting. Slowly raising her head up from her half-eaten plate of food, she flashed a faint smile to Brent."Oh, good morning Brent. One hell of a morning, huh?" "Yeah,"
he said, surprised that she broke out of her shell so quickly, "was looking forward to acing the test today as well. Guess showing off will have to wait.""I still can't decide whether I prefer going out there rather than spending a day in class. Guess we should be thanking the commander for that."
the raven-haired girl joked, chuckling half-heartedly in trying to make light of the situation and hide her anxiety to the coming battle. "What were you up to this morning? Knowing you, you must've been already up before they came to get you.""Seems like the guards really like to walk in on me during awkward times,"
Brent replied, slowly getting into the flow of the conversation, "First time they literally just waited outside my shower. This time they went out of their way to get to Ground Zero with just a flimsy ass umbrella, when I already had my raincoat with me.""But yeah, was just doing some experimentation hijinks. Still sleeping on your side, Angelic?"
Angel grinned widely at the mention of being caught at awkward times "Oh, I thought you meant something more awkward."
she jested, lightly poking a half-eaten sausage with her fork. "No no, I've been up for about half-a-hour before they came. I'm an early bird. Well, not as much as you are, but it's ingrained into my routine. Honestly, I had already resigned from my morning workout because of the weather, so I took some bit of time to prepare myself for the day.""Well, for their sake, I hope the guards never have to walk into someone masturbating."
Too crass of a joke? His eyes flickered towards Angelic before turning to his food. "And I only tried starting off my mornings at 5 AM recently. Think I might actually have to start drinking coffee now. Know any good coffee prepping techs?"
Angel cringed a bit at how straight-forward Brent was replying to her subtle innuendos, but she giggled nonetheless at the hilarity of the situation. "With the ways they come in so suddenly like that, I'm pretty sure they walked in on worse situations."
"Unfortunately, I'm not much of a coffee drinker myself. My manager tried that for the first days. I disliked the bitterness of it..."
the ex-rockstar trailed off, suddenly realizing she was spilling out her old life again without thinking."Literally all those problems could be solved if they just gave a quick warning via cuff beforehand, but hey, maybe they secretly enjoy pretending to be moms who don't knock.""And yeah,"
he said, smoothly continuing the conversation, "That's what made me go 'bleh' with coffee too. Just feels like you lose something though, if you have to resort to adding cream or sugar to make a drink taste good, right? Really, at least tea has a gentle flavor. Coffee's just the punch in the tongue that no one asked for."
He was talking too much, perhaps, but now wasn't the time for Angelic to clam up and start a self-destructive cycle of thinking about her oh-so-tragic past."Hmm... I tried a lot of stuff to sweeten the drink, but I just can't seem to enjoy it either way. Same goes for tea. Sure, it isn't as bitter as coffee, but it tastes... how do you say it... plain?"
Angel fumbled a bit with the word. "I'm more of soft drink person. Soda, juice, a bit of alcohol doesn't hurt either from time to time. Usually, nothing gets me in a better mood than a nice glass of pulp-free orange juice.""Mmm, a fan of feeling your taste buds get eroded by acid, eh?"
he grinned, "Never understood masochistic tendencies like that. Orange juice is nice though. Lotsa vitamin C.""I mean, if you haven't figured it out, I like sweet tastes. Maybe I'm a sugar person?"
Angel chuckled, never thought of herself that way before now. "Well, it could be worse. It's not like I'm totaling my health like smoking or having bad life habits, right? Sometimes, you gotta spice your life up a bit, else you'd just be stuck in a boring self-imposed routine."
Angel realized just how ironic it was for her to say that given how things had been going for her around here. That's who she was deep down after all, despite having a bit changed on the outside ever since she came here.
Sugar? Something to note down then. Nodding along with her chat, Brent stabbed an apple slice and bit into it, savoring the healthy crunch. "That's true enough,"
he said, not really committing to any particular argument, "But a sense of normalcy is a rarity here. No need to add extra spice when the world does it for you."
After all, regardless of how many safe topics they bounced around on, the upcoming 'mission' wasn't going to leave his mind."Got any plans after this?""I can't argue with you there. A routine does sound nice, given what kind of crap is looming over our head every day. But I'd personally add the kind of spice I like before being handed something I'd most probably hate."
Angel stood silent for a moment. Truthfully, before Brent had joined her, she wasn't even thinking about what to do before the battle. She had been just content with enjoying her potential last meal before going to battle. But now that the subject was brought up, the black-haired Mage looked thoughtful, the tip of her fork tapping against her glossy lips."Probably the same as everyone else. Getting ready for what's coming. Get a change of clothes, change into the protective gear I requested earlier last week. Ensure whatever gear I bring with me is functioning, that kind of crap."
Pausing, Angel was thinking back at the briefing, remembering her position and her role in this battle. Again, she could not help but feel uneasiness creeping back. "Brent..."
she trailed off, wondering if it was a good idea to let her doubts show."What do you think of putting me at the frontlines?""Sugar instead of ghost peppers, eh?"
He leaned back as Angelic posed her question, studying her expression. Truth be told, the arbiter had thought that the allocation of power seemed to be off in this particular mission. Their healers, after all, were important, and yet, Christmas was protected by Ernie, who made rope, and Zoe, whose power was functionally useless against these monsters? On the other hand, Gregory, whose power was dependent on his ability to set things up, was put up with the task of supporting two different groups without attracting any attention to himself? And then you had Hazel, who's power should be amazing against these monsters, relegated to mopping up fodder?"...sounds like a mistake. You're a ranged attacker, after all. Would make more sense that you'd be with me and Grego, instead of on the frontlines,"
he began, "But I can understand why they'd want you to cover Hazel's back. Your shouts are powerful enough to knock Chris on his scaly ass in close range, after all. Those robotic losers got no chance."
"So, hey, chin up! Sorta strange to think about it this way, but if you're in the same group as Hazel 'I Vaporize All Inorganic Matter' Baker and the omnipotent Siena, as well as the unstoppable, untouchable 2Chainz Rotem, you're probably in the safest position ever!"
In the end, Angel was right to have asked Brent about this matter. She figured he was like-minded when it came to strategy and analysis. While he wasn't off point, he wasn't completely right either. There were other people to take into the matter, people Angel felt would be more suited for taking her job."It's not really a matter of being a ranged attacker; it's more about my effectiveness against machinery. Sure, I may have kicked Chris' ass in the Flags game, but that was because he was affected not only physically but also mentally by the screams. I figured out, after training with my powers throughout the week, that the sheer sound of the shrieks cause some sort of mental breakdown... paralysis. It's basically like overloading your hearing with sound. Machines don't hear the same way organics do, so they won't be affected besides being simply pushed back. What good is that really is, compared to let's say Allison who can cut through inorganic matter just as efficiently as Hazel?""Following up on Gregory's matter, it would've been best if he was taking Allison's place as Healer defender, send her to the frontlines in my stead, and have me as ranged backup. I can't protect the healers myself, as my voice would just give my care's position away."
Angel crossed her arms, looking down at the almost-finished plate of food she no longer had room in her stomach to take anymore. "Don't get me wrong. I don't want to sound like a coward. I'm not one. I'm not very concerned about my safety in this plan. I'm concerned about how efficient the teams will be. Like you said, putting Zoe and Ernest together for protecting a Healer isn't something I trust either. If a monster comes up to Christmas, our most efficient Healer, what can someone summoning a rope and outstandingly resilient and a Mage that can only rot organic matter be of help to protect him? There are things I'm not quite grasping into this plan.""Probably finding an excuse to use everyone in this plan,"
Brent said. Angelic was definitely taking this seriously, wasn't she? The plan definitely was strange, especially when it was confirmed by Rosa that there was only one subnatural involved in this situation, and said subnatural used inorganic materials as the base for their power."Positioning is nice and all, but really, it feels like the Strike team is organized strangely as well. As you mentioned, Hazel basically disintegrates matter, and Allison does the same, with the added bonus of being able to negate powers. Why not just have Hazel and Allison ride Chris towards the titan instead? Bring Siena along, perhaps, to increase the power of his flames to drive back the monsters. While Hazel shreds at the titan, Allison searches for the subnatural with her sword, and once that sword stabs them...well, that should probably erase or stop all the robots that the dude controls."
Brent laughed then."Hell, what is Savannah even DOING in the support team? Really makes me wonder if there's some sort of political shenanigan going around here, like Zhang trying to use this incident to show how everyone here is useful, when only some of us are."
Angélique listened intently to Brent's point of view. She approved most of what he said, voicing yet more logical fallacies into the plan. Playing around by spinning the now-cleaned fork between her fingers, the young woman looked back to Brent. "The only logical reason I think the Strike Team is composed as what is it is mainly because they are dropping them off completely for a helicopter. Hell, I think they are just going to launch them off from high above, counting on their superhuman resilience to just shrug off the landing. That and they will be in the heart of the swarm, outnumbered and counting on the Support Team to take the fuckers off their back. I gotta admit, even I thought I would be useful against the colossus. If there's really a human in there, then a well-placed scream can lock them down paralyzed until the other three tear open their armor and put an end to their rampage.""But yeah, I'm not agreeing with placing Savannah directly in the heat of battle. If timing was the reason they didn't put Allison at the forefront of the fight, the girl is even worse in that aspect. She had told my team on our first encounter with monsters that she had a five minutes timer between each explosion. Is it worth blowing a few machines and being next to a liability for five minutes? No, it isn't. That makes just one more person to look after, who can't help herself."
Angel coughed, slowly realizing she was starting to sound exactly how Zoe had been in the aftermath of their gruesome battle. In the end, it looks like the fight left an impression on her, a lesson to Angel that she wanted to make sure she learnt and avoid repeating mistakes like last time."I wanted to speak with Kardos about my concerns about this plan, but I've been told he was too busy to even hear me out. Do you think we could manage something out , without fucking up badly, during the battle? They did say adjustments should be made as the circumstances change.""Yeah, but even the whole dropping tactic seems...dunno what it makes me feel. Sander's invulnerable and Callan's super strong, but Chris can FLY. And you saw how valuable the ability to go airborne is from Shane, right?"
Brent grimaced. "And if they're going to be tossed into the heart of the swarm without the support team right alongside them, how exactly are they going to keep the monsters off their back? The support team would be attack the horde from an entirely different location."
Ultimately though, they were just subnaturals that had no actual authority, so of course Kardos and his staff would be focusing on strategizing and whatever else. Was this supposed to be a test in its own way? To see how disciplined the students were? To see how flexible
they were?"Well, its not like we haven't disobeyed before, so they're probably expecting that. Maybe Sander will run off halfway during the fight to sniff down Christmas. Maybe Emma will just give up and crawl into a hole. Maybe Grant will fall asleep on the way there and then refuse to get up."
He chuckled at how silly and absolutely game-changing such things were, before getting serious again."Ultimately, though, we don't know how Hazel's power will interact with these things. Before we start changing the plan, it'd probably be best to see if our VIP's power works as advertised against them. Gotta get achievements and evidence under our belt before people start giving a shit about our opinions, eh?""Maybe you're right. Shouldn't get ahead of ourselves and start conspiring against the authority here. Still, I'm not quite fond of simply following blindly without thinking ahead of time. I can assure you, I won't wait for our classmates to fall one by one if shit indeed gets real to do something about it."
Angel leaned back on her chair and stared at the ceiling, letting out a sigh as she acknowledged Brent's statement about higher-ups not giving a damn about their opinion, for now. "Speaking of Emma, how is she? You worked with her during the Flags game, right? What kind of partner should I expect her to be? I haven't had the opportunity to speak with her yet.""As long as 'do something' isn't suicidal, go for it,"
Brent replied. Looking at his finished tray and his lack of a glass of milk, he was about to go up and grab something to drink when Angelic blindsided him with a whole different question. Emma, huh? He scratched his head, mulled over his thoughts, separated opinion from fact, and ultimately...shrugged."She's probably not a morning person. Probably also gives up too easily. God knows what she would have done during physical training classes if the teacher wasn't cracking his whip so much."
Being a bit peeved here? Maybe he should dial it down. "Has an amazing power though. A summoning ability that has infinite range, as long as she is within earshot of her summons. That's why I was using phones and all that. Personally, Emma can be a super back-liner if everyone were equipped with cameras and microphones that allowed her to 'video chat' in their vicinity."
He paused then, thinking over some more things, rolling them within his mind. No, not this time."Not particularly bloodthirsty, or, at least, has a better handle on it than others. Was the least enthusiastic one on the team, but seemed to follow instructions well?"
Brent's head tilted to the side. "Ultimately, a powerful follower with low morale. But perhaps that's just how she appears to me.""An Aberration with good control over herself, huh? That does sound like someone I should get to know and learn lessons from."
Angel chuckled to herself. "Well, that's good to know. Of course, I'll see it for myself when we are on the field, but at least I have a few guidelines of what to expect. Thanks for indulging into my request."
Pushing her tray of food aside, Angel laid her shoulders on the table and leaned on her knuckles. "And you? What were you thinking of doing after breakfast?"
Uwah, Angelic learning to become like Emma? Sounded like a downgrade to him."More experiments. Gonna have to get a half-decent map of the town as well. See what the internet brings up in regards to Maryland. Hopefully the conditions on the road would allow me to go rollerblading, eh? After that, it's just refueling for the mission. Can't waste any time faffing about, after all.""Still experimenting about your powers?"
Angélique hummed, suddenly looking a bit lost in thoughts before resurfacing. "I should be doing some experiments as well. There's... something I have been thinking about my own ability. It might be something worth looking further into before heading off to battle." "Eh? Gonna try to make sonic swords now?""I wish!"
Angélique laughed light-heartedly, despite how serious this situation was supposed to be. "You know what the problem with my power is? It's simply too damn wide. It's useful to get a lot of enemies or a big one, but it really sucks when I have allies standing in front of me. Can't go all out and risk dropping the others in a wide-ass sonic blast, you know?"
Again, Angel looked somewhat thoughtful, as if searching her brains out for something deep inside her mind. "I thought... what if I tried to concentrate those shouts? Reduce their area of effect, so I could target specific creatures?""Uh..."
Brent scratched his head. "Yeah, I was planning on asking you about that too, on Thursday...but then you went off with Chris. I mean, it IS your voice, right? And the rain's perfect for seeing just where your shouts are going, so...can't miss this opportunity!""That being said...your voice going hoarse while you train would be pretty shitty right now.""Well, true, it is my voice, but the way my power affects it is beyond my understanding. I mean, I do have some control over it now that I'm actively training it."
Angel found it somewhat hard to properly explain how it worked. It just came naturally to her."A training date it is, then! Let's make sure we don't end up abusing me before the mission. I know for a fact, over the week, that I can recover if I rest up for some hours, depending how much I used my voice."
She was being strangely enthusiastic about it. The part about actually seeing the sonic wave showing through the rain was compelling."Yeah, if you're just there to test new things out, we should have plenty of time,"
Brent said, "Wanna finally try out the whole megaphone combo too?""Oh yeah... we didn't get to test that one out last Thursday, right?"
Angel chuckled nervously, remembering that it was probably because she freaked out while dragon-riding Chris they stopped their training session earlier. "Sure! Let's stop by my room and fetch that stuff."
Getting up and leaving the cafeteria, the two plotting Mages went to the Aberration Dorms. Reaching outside, Brent used his Overclocking ability to upgrade Angel's umbrella into an encompassing and transparent membrane. Its frame was study enough to take the force of the wind and sheltered effectively the two against the downpour."That's quite convenient, I must say.""Technology exists to make things convenient, after all."
Reaching out the door to room 300, Angel opened the door with a quick swipe of her ID. "Come on in. Shouldn't take more than a minute."
Angel invited Brent inside as she stepped in, switching the light on. The inside of her room was tidy, her bed neatly made as the black and gray sheet aligned itself perfectly along the frame of the bed. The black curtains adorning her windows were held open in a stylish "< >" fashion by black lacy cords. Her desk was perfectly organized, stacks of paper neatly placed on the corner of the crooked-legged desk, showing some signs of damage. Hints of what Angel had been up to before being taken away by guard were sitting on her bed: a makeup kit next to an obvious spot Angel had been sitting where the bed sheet was unmade.
However, the most prominent feature of her room was sitting in the corner of the bedroom, next to the window. When the light came up, excited chirps came from the cage by the window. before heading to her closet, Angel walked to the cage, leaning to get a better view of the black-feathered canary inside."Hello~ Pav!"
the rockstar half-singed to the bird, from which came a reply in the form of a few happy chirps."Chirp chirp,"
Brent mimicked as he waved at the canary. Looking about the room, it was fairly clear to him that Angelic enjoys her dark, modern design. Pretty impersonal, all things considered, but it also exuded a maturity that Grant's sole devotion to his bed and Brent's lack of shits about home design lacked."Taught it any songs yet, Angelic?"
he said, unsure if he should sit while she grabbed her stuff."I tried to, but she has yet to repeat after me. She probably need more time to learn after hearing the same song being repeated over and over."
Angel giggled cheerfully, whistling something rhythmic as she dug one hand into a small bag sitting next to the cage. Reacting to the whistles, the small bird singed along its raven-haired master as the girl was pouring some seeds into its feeding cup.
Judging there was yet enough water for Pav to last for the day, Angel put the bird seeds back into the duffel bag and turned to her closet. Swinging it open, it did not take long for the young woman to find the microphone and the pair of speakers she was looking for. "Sorry for the wait. Didn't have time to feed my little darling this morning. She was still sleeping, dark as it is outside.""No problem,"
Brent waved, "Gotta care for the peeps you're going to return to, after all. And hey, maybe one day you'll be able to give other people the same super-shouts. Then your canary will become your right-hand bird."
Offering to help Angelic with the load and making a silent prayer that the electronics didn't get absolutely wrecked by the water, Brent headed out alongside the raven-haired aberration. Another two overclocks ensured that everything remained dry, and from there, it was simply a matter of trekking all the way to Ground Zero once more.
Hopefully he didn't do it and run out of his silver blood as well...but then again, could he even run out of that?
The grounds were as desolate as he had left it, deep puddles forming within depressions in the ground. Finding actual cover from the rain in the form of a building, Brent released his grip on the umbrella, the large construction wilting as his power left its form."Alright then, Angelic, whatcha wanna get done first?""Let's get the electronics experiment out of the way first before it gets soaked and malfunctions."
Angel took the microphone in hand while giving the speakers to Brent. "I don't precisely how your Overclocking works, but here's what I was thinking. How about upgrading the mic's sturdiness and enhancing its sound reception, while also upping the speakers' sturdiness and raising the sound distribution. Think you can somehow do all that at once?""Unless you have a better idea. You are the techno-master after all."
"I definitely can do it all at once,"
Brent replied, "But it's better to see if the mic can handle it by itself first, right? After all, if the mic explodes, we can't even do anything with the speakers."
With that reasoning, he took the microphone from Angelic, examining it a couple of times before deciding that, given his lack of knowledge, he really had no clear idea of how to advance such an object. So it was back to the basics after all. The first function, Selector, would serve to improve its ability to further amplify sound. The second function, Incitor, would improve upon its physical durability, ensuring that Angelic's own destructive voice wouldn't just destroy it.
It exploded, reformed, and then warped within his hands, a molten mess of technological evolution, and finally, cooled.
A dark red cone, lightly pulsating with white LED lights, was what came out of the Overclock, and, still holding onto it, Brent directed the open end of the cone to Angelic, saying, "Try not to blow off my hand, yeah?"
While the whole show of technological-advanced upgrades were impressive, the final result of the overclocked microphone looked terrible. Megaphones made the whole thing look silly, Angel thought. "Don't worry, I'm not going to use the force effect on those. Don't want to yank your arm or anything."
Directing Brent's arm away from his body, Angélique positionned herself as to scream into the rceiving end of the megaphone without having her training buddy in her area of effect. Clearing out her throat, she inhaled deeply before letting out a high-pitched "E" note from her throat.
While the ear-splitting screech did demonstrated the black-haired young woman effectively used her power, nothing left trace of her ability usage. The upgraded microphone itself still looked just as functional as before she screamed into it."Well, it looks like the thing held on."
Alright. At least the mic didn't explode or anything. Now then...
Taking the cord from the speakers and plugging it into the microphone, before releasing another deep breath. This was now a 'singular' object. Silver circuits coursed through the wire into the speakers, and once again, everything changed. Matching the dark red of the twice-buffed microphone, the two speakers grew taller, attaining a wicked flame-like frame and practically crackling with the magical power that fueled it. Voice amplification + durability once more."Ready to rock?"
Setting up the speakers to face a nearby building, Angel nodded with a grin before returning to Brent's risen arm holding the megaphone. To be safe, Angel stood at the opposite where the speakers were facing, behind them as to not expose herself from the potential sound waves that could come out of the sound-reproducing devices.
Again, she inhaled deeply and let out another mind-wrecking scream straight in front of her. While her voice was perfectly replicated, even amplified to an ears-hurting level, nothing seemed to happen beside the screams being annoyingly loud.
Turning around, Angel looked at Brent, then at the undamaged building in front of them, perking up a quizzical eyebrow "So...? Anything happened?""...yeah, shoulda seen that coming,"
Brent said, looking back towards Angelic. "My power can't be used to buff other powers at all, only inanimate objects. Since your voice IS your power now, I'm guessing that no matter how much you shout, your power will...interfere with my power and won't allow it to do anything."
He nodded, hiding the vestiges of his own disappointment."It's the same if I try to, say, Overclock a magically generated object. I can make an ordinary object as good as that magical one, but I can't make the magical one better than it already is.""Yeah... that sucks."
Angel let out a much visible disappointed sigh of her own. "Guess I was overthinking things. Believing I was simply amplifying the sound frequency of my own voice, and let science do the rest. Sort of like a sonic boom from those jets, you know?"
the raven-haired screaming Mage chuckled bitterly at her own ignorance."I suppose there truly is no explanation when it comes to 'magic', other than figuring out what can be done, right?""Well, c'est la vie,"
he replied, releasing his power's hold upon the objects. "At least we now know that everyone can be as eardrum-shatteringly loud as you, just without all the other benefits."
A smile remained on his face despite the slight disappointment."And yeah, perhaps the lesson here is to focus on your power by itself, without trying to get drugs or accessories involved. Next is the whole 'focused' scream thing, right?""Ah... yes... let's get to tha-"
Angelique was interrupted by a loud obnoxious "HEY!"
coming from her jeans' pocket, "Whoops, hang on a sec."
she said as she dug into her pants to retrieve her phone
Hey angel do you know that zoe girl? I want to talk to her before the mission but I don t know where she is. Do you know her room number or where i can find her?
Browsing through some notes she had typed into her phone - basically a copy of her files - she returned a reply to her classmate as soon as she found the girl's room number.
I do. Her room's 201.
Thinking of Zoe, would she be around here too? Throughout the last week, Angel did managed to get a few glimpses of her former teammate, chasing around the citizens of Ground Zero with her still gruesome abilities. Taking mental note of that, the young woman added another quick reply to Ernest about the possibility of finding his teammate in the area where she currently was.
If you can't find her in her room, try at Ground Zero. She often uses the area.
Thanks buddy"Sorry for that. Ernest is looking for Zoe. Probably going to meet his future teammate before the actual battle."
Angel returned her phone to her pants as she looked up to the building standing in front of them."Alright, focus time. It'll be useful if I can manage to pull this off. Help in knocking down those robots without getting my team caught in the wake of my screams."
Remembering last night's week, Angel closed her eyes after visualizing her intended target: one of the many sets of windows still left intact. Before, she would simply scream at them and watch as they would all shatter at the same time. Today, however, was to break on set at a time. Taking a deep breath to clear her mind, she let out a sharp whistle. While surprisingly loud, it wasn't as deafening as her usual powerful shrieks.
Another failure. Angel let out a groan of frustration, her plans not going the way she wanted them to today. Why couldn't she do it? She clearly remembered that part in her nightmare. Was it something she couldn't do yet, didn't have enough control of? She knew something changed that night."Wa-"
Ah, she was already going ahead and screeching. As Angelic groaned from her failure, Brent patted her on the back and said, "Was gonna tell you to 'wait' and all. Geez, what's the point of me being here if you're just going to train by yourself anyways?"
Pulling the hood over his raincoat once more, and this time not bothering to overclock it, Brent brought out his shiny new phone, walking off into the heavy rain. Drops splattered over the hood and his shoes were instantly drenched by an unfortunately deep puddle, but the arbiter didn't mind too much. He positioned himself a safe distance away from what he presumed to be Angelic's range, before starting off a video."Angelic! I want you to scream as long as you can while modulating your voice! Do as many weird vocal tricks as you can with it, and hopefully my camera will be able to capture what your shouts look like!""Oo~kay?"
Angel was a bit confused about Brent's request, his words processing into her mind until it finally dawned upon her.
Nodding, the girl breathed in deeply and, this time, let out a forceful "O" pitched scream. The sonic wave became visibly apparent as the rain was pushed away wherever the sound reached in front of the screaming Mage. She had held onto her shout for a few seconds before coughing and gasping for her to refill her lungs. Once more, she let out another shriek, this time while trying to modulate her voice as she let it out forcefully. Changing pitches from "O" to "E" seemed to stop the rain from being pushed away, while going to "A" pitches brought back the same force effects. There was however little change in the wave's range and width as the intensity always remained the same."D-did you get what you wanted? I can keep going if you haven't."
Angel stuttered as she tried to take back her breath."Try these two things now! A scream that becomes quieter as you go on and a scream that's like..."
Brent paused, before letting out a sharp shout with his mouth as small as possible, as if spitting, "...BEH! Like that!"
Angel laughed at Brent's demonstration, suddenly feeling silly if that's what she looked like while screaming. After silencing herself from having a good laugh, Angel returned to the building's front view.
Starting out in full force, Angelique followed Brent's advice, resulting in growing quieter made the visible force wave lessen in length until it disappeared as she grew near silent. Then, grinning, Angel proceeded to let out her own version of what her training partner tried to show her, starting out with a low "O" before unleashing it into a focused "WAH".
Finally, the desired result came in. The sonic wave that came from the last note was significantly less wide than her usual sonic waves, shaped just about large enough to hit one or two persons,"Think that worked,"
Brent called out, "Now make that 'wah' into a 'weh'!"
Tilting her head quizzically as she wondered what the difference was between the two, Angel slowly nodded and went for that "O-WEH" the Overclocking Mage was asking for. Surprisingly, the shout was even more focused; the sonic wave concentrated enough to be as wide as a single individual. "Still got it in you, right?"
The arbiter continued to call out encouragingly. "One last spurt now, Angelic! PEW PEW!"
Angel turned her head towards Brent, a face clearly showing a look of disbelief. "Are you fucking serious?""The smaller your mouth is during the screams, the smaller the radius is! Dead serious!"
he countered as the wind picked up."Of course I knew that! It just sounds so fucking retarded." "Causing friendly fire because you're afraid of sounding retarded is even more retarded!"
Snapping her head away from Brent, Angel let out an ear-splitting "O-WEE" scream. While this one might be about the same condensed radius as the last one, the pitch of the shout didn't bring any force effect, making it invisible in the rain."Did that sound retarded enough for you?"
Angel mockingly shouted to Brent, before turning back to the window and letting out a sudden deep and resonating "POW", sending out a wave so small it broke only a few squares from one set of windows."We can always go stupider,"
Brent replied, capturing the profile of that last scream before stopping the phone on the camera and running back into cover. Taking off his raincoat and roughly shaking off the droplets that still clung to it, the amethyst eyed youth rubbed the screen of the phone dry, before showing Angelic a recording of her shouts as they parted rain and visibly made their different profiles known.
At the end of it, he asked, "How's your throat after all that? Do the pow pows exhaust you less than your waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaas?""That's so cool!"
Watching how the raid was being affected by her supersonic screams made Angelique excited and quite enthusiastic over the footage of Brent's recordings. It was just as spectacular, if not more, than the special effects she would've seen in the movies. "I'm feeling just small itching. Something that will go away later today if I rest my voice for a few hours.""Honestly, I don't think either type of screams is more or less exhausting than the others, It's just, one requires more focus and precise tuning. Otherwise, they pretty much feel the same exhaustion-wise.""Mmm,"
he said, leaning against the concrete wall, "Shame there's no 'efficient' scream then. Sounds like you'll be doing a lot if you're going up against an army. Guess you'll be putting your gun skills to the test?""Mhm. it'll come around eventually. I'm sure of that. I've actually noticed my voice has gotten more accustomed to the screaming ever since I came here. I think... it happened at the same time my reach grew further? Felt like that suddenly, my voice wasn't taking its toll on my vocal cords as much as before."
Angel paused, remembering exactly that it had happened sometime during the Flags and Seek match, just after she had beaten Chris and had that weird vision all of a sudden."I don't expect guns to be as efficient, but yeah, I do need a backup plan. That's one reason I had requested mine. Still... I haven't trained yet on how to properly use handguns, to be honest. Got so caught up in investigating my powers that I neglected firearms study.""Must be because you're so gungho about power training, eh?"
Brent joked.Must be because of those fucking visions."But yeah, guess you're just gonna have to be careful about how many shouts you do then. Gonna be a bad time if you run out of gas in a dire situation, eh? As I mentioned before, Hazel can probably do like, 400% of the heavy lifting with her giant ghost-hands.""Agreed. With powerhouses like Hazel and potentially Emma covering us up with her golems, I'm thinking of taking a more conservative approach, It's not like I can do much of my own by only knocking those things on their asses, right? I think i'll take a true 'Support' role and use my powers only in dire situations, like if we're somehow overwhelmed or someone's about to be jumped on.""Sounds smart. I'll try to keep you all updated on horde movements so that stuff doesn't happen.""Speaking of which..."
Angel got her phone out of her jeans once more "Might be a good idea to get each other in our contacts, in case something happens or if they don't provide us with communication devices on the field, don't you think?""Sounds good. Even bought a bluetooth for that shit,"
Brent said with a grin, "Did you?""Same fancy model they give out to our classmates. Gotta stay in touch with the latest tech."
Angel said as she handed out her phone towards Brent.
Spinning his own phone in his hand before tapping it against Angelic's, he waited until the 'blip' sounded before taking a look at the screen. "Lucky Angel?"
he asked, cocking an eye at the contact info."Oh..."
Angel's expression turned a bit sour when she heard her old pseudonym being called out. "That... was my old stage name,"
Angel admitted."Lachance means 'Fortune' or 'Luck' in French. Ultimately, Angel was a nickname given to me because of my first name, so it turned out this way when my manager proposed to turn my translated name into a stage brand.""Damn,"
Brent laughed, "That's a pretty misfortunate nickname.""You tell me..."
Angel sighed. Really, looking back at everything that happened in the span of a few weeks, Angel had reconsidered if she truly was someone 'lucky' to have this voice of hers. While it did brought her fame and success before, now it was only used to destroy. A girl like her, who used to be something like the metal version of a hippie with all this 'Peace and Love' mentality. In the end, she thought that if she wouldn't be Miss Fortune anymore, then she would be Misfortune instead."I suppose that's about it for now. Can't go wasting all my voice here before the actual battle. And I'd rather not catch a cold either because of this awful weather.""Oh, you know that porn star too? Damn, must be super awkward then,"
Brent patted Angelic on the shoulder, before handing her the umbrella. "And yeah, see ya then. Gotta go do my own stuff now before I run out of time.""Oh you fucking-"
Angélique threw a light jab at her partner's arm, her cheeks painted with a slight shade of embarrassed red. Despite that, she grinned playfully and waved a farewell hand while holding the umbrella above her already-drenched body."See you later.""Yeah, looking forward to the robo-kicking date."
Angel laughed as she parted ways "Me too."Me too...