Hidden 7 mos ago 7 mos ago Post by Leslie Hall
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Leslie Hall ==> Do the windy thing

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In all his years as captain, Ragnar had never once heard the barracks fall completely silent. Even his own authority had failed to achieve such a feat. Yet as Adelyn stood amidst the crowd, the thud of the book she’d just lobbed at the captain’s head managed to accomplish what Ragnar couldn’t. The crew stared, mouths agape with shock, between the young noble and the captain who had so callously insulted everything she knew.

Then Adelyn’s own insults began. They poured from her mouth like a broken dam, mercilessly washing away any and all Chasers who drew her ire. A young pirate snickered as the lady next to him copped a savage remark that left her speechless.
Hah! She got you good!” He jaunted, though his laughter was quickly silenced when the scorned pirate sent him flying through the crowd with a brutal right hook.

He wasn’t the only one.
What’d you say, ya harpy screwing shite?!
Put ‘em up, ye sorry excuse fer a pirate!
How’d you like to taste your own teeth?

In an instant, the barracks came to life with a series of battle cries, gunshots and jeers. Punches were thrown, weapons drawn and spell circles summoned. The captain, who had been standing quietly throughout the whole ordeal, turned back around just in time to watch Adelyn slip away from the carnage. He let his crew go for a moment before taking a deep breath and clasping his hands together. His eyes were closed, building an intense concentration of power throughout his muscles. He began to spread his arms wide just as his eyes opened; his gaze fierce.

Echo Clap!” He bellowed, his hands pounding together as a roar of thunder. The wave of magic that radiated from him shook the entirety of the ship. The pirates inside the barracks toppled over each other, unable to maintain solid footing due to the captain’s Quake Magic.

Mona found herself shoving Alex off of her with a frustrated grunt. The drunken doctor was looking quite pale, his eyes widening with the realization of what was to come. He attempted to clasp his hand over his mouth, but that did little to stop him from emptying his guts over the floor.
Alex, that’s disgusting!” Mona squealed, clambering away from the putrid stench as best as she could. She found herself next to Huangdi. He had asked her something before the brawl had broken out, but now wasn’t the best time to offer a response.

Meanwhile, Silver Claw and Amara remained standing. Before the captain’s spell toppled over the young girl, the other pirate had quickly stabilized her by wrapping his arm around her waist and digging the claws on his free hand into the side of the ship. Once the rumbling had stopped, he quickly released his grip and rolled his eyes at the groaning mess of pirates that lay before him.

Let’s hope you’re more useful than this lot.” Silver Claw said, addressing Amara directly. Once everyone had stood up on their feet, Ragnar cleared his throat.
You all have your assignments. Rest up. Tomorrow’s mission is important.” The captain made no comment regarding Adelyn’s assault, turning back around and continuing his path to his quarters.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Inkarnate
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Guild Airship
Barracks


“Yeah, we did. I just helped though, I'm nobody compared to Mona or Zeke.”

Sania's reply to Huangdi was polite and without nerves, though the blue-haired girl would've been lying to herself if she said she wasn't a little bit anxious after the confrontation Adelyn and the Captain had only moments prior. As the “mother hen” of some of the younger chasers, Sania knew Adelyn's temperament pretty well, though she had hoped that with time she would come to ease up at least a little bit. Sometimes she was surprised the silver-haired girl wasn't an expert of fire magic based on her antics. But still, she was by Sania's perspective, a friend.

She took a light breath as she thought back to the mission assignments. Sania, alongside Mona and Huangdi had been assigned to take out Banskia Central Station. A task they needed to do quickly and quietly. Sania had never even heard of the location and lacked the mechanical knowledge to sabotage or manipulate the type of mechanical engineering they would be interacting with. As far as she knew neither did Huangdi which left Mona as being the most important person among them for the mission. Sania knew the dangers ahead, but she had proven herself time and time again. She wouldn't hesitate. She'd support Mona as best as she could. She knew Haungdi would too, but she still felt like she needed more information before they left. It was that reason alone that she asked the two a question pertaining to the mission.

“Looks like the three of us are going to Banskia – are either of you familiar with it? What's the plan?”
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Raijinslayer
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Guild Airship, Top Deck
Banksia Skyline Route # 14: En route to the 5th Hierarchical Realm, Suphlatus


Laz, for once, didn't jump at the first chance to enter a brawl as the crew of disorderly pirates descended into chaos, instead choosing to quietly follow Adelynn as she made her way out. Making his way up the steps, he cursed as the wood beneath him suddenly shook as if the ship had run aground on something, barely able to keep himself from falling down the stairs.

"Damn bastard. . . I know you're trying to keep people in check, but can ya do it without nearly breaking the damn thing apart while you're at it." The young Underworlder looked down the steps with a scowl as he continued his way to the upper deck. When he made it to the top of the steps, he'd keep his head ducked low so nothing but perhaps the very top of his head would be exposed through the trap door as he took a seat. With a whisper, he activated his magic, the black mist of magic forming into the familiar eye-like sigil, rising up out of the trapdoor to look at the distraught girl.

"Soooooo. . . . wanna talk? You seem. . . upset."

@Lunarlord34
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Lunarlord34
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@Raijinslayer

She was in the middle of cradling her sore foot when she heard the familiar voice call out to her. Blargh, out of everyone why did it have to be him? Straightening up and shooting a glare over her shoulder, she noticed the familiar creepy eye sigil that Laz made poking out from under the trapdoor. She had half a mind to blast both it and the door to smithereens, maybe she could get some splinters in his face. But she decided that was more trouble than it was worth. Instead, she narrowed her eyes further and spoke in a low growl.

"No I do not. And certainly not with someone as vile and irritating a savage as yourself." Turning her back on Laz, she sat down and hugged her knees close to her chest. She didn't know what he wanted, but she didn't care or want to know. So instead, she sat there in silence for a moment. Or two. Or three. In fact, it was more like five minutes of total dead silence from the girl before she finally turned slightly to glance back towards the trapdoor.

Oh. He was still there. She let out a heavy sigh as she realised that he probably wasn't going anywhere anytime soon. Great. "...I didn't want or ask for any of this." Burying her face into the dark fabric of her skirt, she spoke in a hard to hear mumble. Especially seeing as Laz was kinda below deck. "I'm sick of it. All of it. No one ever cares to ask me before hand, they're all the same. The Captain, my parents, everyone. I didn't get a choice in any of it."
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Raijinslayer
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Guild Airship, Top Deck
Banksia Skyline Route # 14: En route to the 5th Hierarchical Realm, Suphlatus


Laz didn't say anything in response Adelyn's initial response, though not for lack of wanting. Even in the silence that ticked afterward, he felt that impulsive, angry side of him wanting to jump out yelling and cursing like he usually did. But he didn't. He bit his tongue, kept still and just. . . waited. If she didn't respond, then she didn't respond but. . . it was clear to him that she wasn't as alright as she was trying to seem. The captain's words had gotten to her and Laz knew that reminders of what you'd lost were never pleasant, especially if they're done as part of an insult.

After a time, his patience was award with an opening, if a small one. Despite the distance and substances between them, Laz heard the girl's words with little difficulty. He heard the frustration and anger behind them, the slight tinge of loss and fresh grief and felt. . . guilty. Prob more than anyone else on the ship, he had been trying to get her to go along with the program, partly out of annoyance, but mostly just. . . because. . . it just. . .he'd thought he knew better.

With a sigh and a breath the young mage rose from his seat of the steps, turning his magic off as he made his way from the trapdoor to sit next to the white haired girl. He kept a distance between them, his back to hers as he sat in a cross-legged position, body bowed low as he tried to think of something to say. Several times he'd make a sound, as if about to say something before letting the silence draag on as the words fell back into his mind, either not feeling right or just. . . seeming to die in his throat. Until finally. . .

"I'm sorry."

The words were simple and to the point, but the tone in which they were said was different from how Laz usually sounded. There was no confidence, no brash enthusiasm. . . no warmth o r passion. . . as if all the traits that defined the young mage had been drained right out of him. Or, perhaps, had never truly been there to begin with.

"I can't speak for the captain or anyone else on board but. . . I want to apologize for my part in making you feel as you do. I've pushed you and berated you to just get with the program and join with us. To stop worrying about things, stop 'being difficult'. I've. . . been a jerk to you. And I'm sorry about it." Taking a deep breath, Laz kept himself bowed as he rested his palms on his knees, eyes kept downward as he continued speaking. "I just thought that you'd, ya know, be like me. After losing everything like that. . . I wish I'd had people like the Cloud Chasers around. Instead, I was left alone, in the dark, with no one. I just thought that, maybe. . . maybe i could do my best to make you see that being alone just. . . really sucks. . . but I never really thought about your position. About your thoughts. I just thought I knew you and. . . I don't. That's my mistake and I'll own up to it."

"The captain was a right prick to say what he did and I was equally at fault for cheering it on like I did. Maybe he could've specified a bit more, do something to let the crew know your family was good folk but. . . he didn't. A captain should look out for everyone aboard his ship as best he can, and if he doesn't than, well. . . you should have the right to leave. And while I doubt the captain will do so, at least easily. . . I'm down to sneak you off at the next opportunity." It was a this point that Laz's voice regained some of it's fire again, though still much more subdued than was the norm for the young pirate. "I got some pay from my time here, not much but should be enough to get you a ferry ride to whereever you might need to go with some chang eto spare, mind you don't let the ferrymen gip ya. And I know my way around a glider so sneaking you off when we're near a port shouldn't be too hard. Just have to get past Alex sometimes, and all that takes is a bit of good Inquistor booze I find from time to time on the ships we wreck . . . and maybe a tinse of specially made sleeping powder mixed in."

Laz chuckled a bit at that, remembering the times when he'd slipped his special little concoction into a few of the medic's drinks. He doubted many of the crew, if any, knew about his skill in makingneat little poisons and concoctions like that, but when you spend your life living in the middle of a jungle, you tend to pick up a few things. But the laughter grew silent as Laz grew serious more, with only one thing left to say.

"I'm not offering this lightly, Adelyn. But I swear to you, by the names of the Earth Mother Alexandria and Sky Father Malkuth I swear it, that if you do not wish to be with us than I will do everything in my power to help you leave. But. . . just. . . give it a chance. An honest chance. Because being alone. . . with no friends. . . no family. . . no one to talk to or confide in. . . it really sucks. it sucks realy. . . really bad and . . . I don't want anyone to suffer like that if i can help it.

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@Raijinslayer

Adelyn didn't move from her sitting, curled up ball position even when Laz made his way onto the deck. At this point, she didn't feel up to blasting him to the moon. She didn't really feel like doing anything at the moment really. Instead, she just tried to become more like a sitting armadillo than before and hide her face further. She wasn't sure what was worse right now, how she felt or the fact that she was acting so...weak in front of them. Let alone Laz. Which in turn made her feel worse.

The unsettling silence that set in after she had heard Laz sit down somewhere near her didn't particularly help in that regard either. Perhaps it was too much to expect a savage such as himself to say something, anything, to comfort her. Nor was she was sure why she would want him to. Perhaps because he was the one that had come looking for her after her, truth be told embarrassing, outburst? The more the silence dragged on, the more she had to think. Which she hated.

Thankfully, he finally broke the silence. His sudden and unexpected apology catching her off-guard. It just seemed so...well unlike him. Not just the apology, but the way he said it. At first, she didn't quite understand what he was apologising for, but as he continued to speak she slowly lifted her head. This was certainly a far more...mature line of thinking and speech that Laz was using. One that she thought beyond him, to be perfectly honest her opinion of him wasn't all that high anyway. To show more maturity than a five-year-old child would've been above her expectations. She was so surprised, she couldn't really do much other than sitting there and listen.

It was absurd to be honest, his 'escape plan'. Laughable in fact. Even she couldn't help but smile a little at it as she shook her head. And it would be difficult to find someone who wasn't moved, even a little, at the notion he put forward. It was mostly laughable because it would seem even with this sliver of maturity he had found...he still didn't quite understand.

"And go where exactly?" She asked, her voice cracking just so slightly. "My parents are dead. The Librarium have labelled me a traitor. My brothers will probably kill me on sight, not that one needed a reason to anyway. And my Uncle..." She paused at that one. She wasn't sure about that man, to be perfectly honest. She had never understood him. Nor did she know whether that traitor title had been applied to him or her brothers. Or, if she tried to seek his help, it might label him as such. Let alone, would he even help her?

No. She couldn't go to him. With family out of the question...that left nothing really. She knew nobody, a small side effect of having very little contact with people outside of her direct family or servants. And the occasional ball she went to. Any family friends or allies they had would quite likely turn her in, seeing as she's a traitor and all. She was more than aware she couldn't survive on her own...so, unfortunately, this was her best option.

"Besides...what irks me more than anything this motley crew can do, more than disturbing my reading, more than speak in such crude and vile language, more than being vulgar, barbaric savages...is decide for me. Worse still, betray me." Pausing and clenching her fists, she half turned to look at Laz's back. "Both of which that so-called 'Captain' did. He's no different from them. From my parents. That was all they ever did." She honestly couldn't think of a single significant decision in her life she had made up till now. Her parents seemed intent on her following her brother's footsteps...on becoming a Hunter, or at least a Cleric Knight. And, at the same time, being a graceful and sophisticated nobleman's wife. On becoming a mage. Honestly, she couldn't see how she could feasibly be all that but they had obviously thought otherwise.

"You're not the only one that doesn't understand me. They never did, either that or they simply didn't care what I thought. Even now, I'm stuck with constant reminders. That the choices I didn't even make...they've..." At those words, her tightly clenched hands were paler than a ghost. Contrasted by the small trickle of blood that dripped down from where her nails had dug into her palm.

"...I don't want, or need, someone to confide in. They'll just betray that trust eventually. I'm fine with being alone." She spoke in a brutally honest tone, her tightly held fists just releasing a little. Even if it wasn't all quite the truth, it was just hard to trust someone when she felt she couldn't. Even if she wanted to. "But even so, I know I can't make it by myself. Not when the government has effectively blacklisted you. I wouldn't even be able to go out in Public without being arrested. Leaving this ship is effectively a death wish. Then again, maybe death wouldn't be so bad."

At least in death, nothing that worried, hurt or burdened her would be a problem anymore. Who knows, maybe after the stunt she had pulled just before she would be kicked from the ship anyway. Not like she could really blame the Captain, insubordination was a serious offence. Let alone assault, undermining his authority, amongst other things. The more she thought about it, the more trouble she realised she might've gotten herself into. Oh well, it was no use worrying about it too much now. She had other things burdening her mind. And besides, whatever punishment the Captain would dish out was out of her control.

"Every time I give something, or someone a chance, it just seems to turn around and slap me...I just don't see a reason to." Besides, she had given this lot plenty of little mini chances. None of which had been taken thus far, so what was to be gained by giving them more? "Besides, there's a difference between that and what the Captain expects of me. Attacking a Librarium convoy would just solidify my traitor status beyond repair. And any chances of returning to the Librarium will be gone with it."
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by hatakekuro
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There were no other words to describe what just happened other than holy shit. He should have just not left Adelyn to her own devices, but who would have though that she would hit the captain in the back of the head with a book and then use cutting words? If there was anything to say about it, she was the only one on the ship that actually was able to shut every person up on it, which is something that he had never seen under Ragnar's leadership. Then the rumblings of drunken pirates rose and then erupted into one big free-for-all with many foolish pirates deciding that it would have been just a lovely idea to challenge the martial artist with a fist fight, which only ended as well as anyone with a brain that was not being shaken around. He had to admit, hitting them was not nearly as satisfying as his spars with Lazulin, mostly because that boy could really take one hell of a beating.

Well, that brawl ended with Ragnar blasting the crew around with Huangdi getting dog-piled by many of his crewmates. With not much effort, he flung them off him and patted the dust off his clothes. Oh boy, it looked like Alex vomited, again. Seriously, when did this guy stop drinking? Shouldn't he stop so his liver would not try and commit suicide later? Where did he get all of that liquor anyway? They've joked that he threw all of the medicine out to hide his booze, but there was no way he actually did that, right?

Huh, how in the world did Sania totally avoid all of that ruckus? Did she got caught in the scuffle at all? Then again, she was not one for bar fights anyway. It looked like she was thinking about the mission and really, he couldn't blame her; neither him or her were really tech savvy people so it would have made sense to send just about anyone else. Well, he had an idea what the plan would be though."I think we're supposed to protect Mona while she tampers the devices. The Librarium are bound to notice instantly that something is wrong."
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Leslie Hall
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With the atmospheric disruptor repaired, and the Captain’s meeting coming to an end, most of the crew left the barracks to continue their duties. Mona was among the few who remained behind. She stood over the Captain’s map, two of her archive interfaces floating at her side. One showcased a map of Suphlatus, with the coordinates of Banksia Central highlighted. The other displayed a set of schematics detailing the control tower and its security routes. Her fingers slid across the holographic screen, rotating the structure of the tower and zooming in on a certain location.

Alex groaned on the ground beside her, a few unlucky pirates tasked with cleaning up their trusty doctor’s mess and putting him to bed.
Tsk” Mona clicked her tongue, shaking her head in disapproval at the drunkard.
Looks like the three of us are going to Banskia – are either of you familiar with it? What's the plan?” Sania, eager to be of service, approached Mona along with Huangdi. Seeing her team members brought a smile to her face. Mona very rarely got to work on away missions with the other Guild members. Then again, that was probably for the best; she isn’t the best team player.

I think we're supposed to protect Mona while she tampers the devices. The Librarium are bound to notice instantly that something is wrong.” Mona nodded her head towards the young Prince, waving her already outstretched hand to the front of her body in a crescent motion. The screens she had brought up followed the motion, opening up in front of the other two.

I don’t need to be inside the building to hack their basic systems, but cutting them off is a bit more,” Mona spread her fingers open, zooming further in on an image that resembled a maze of flowing lights. “Complex.

She pointed at specific circuits, highlighting them with her magic.
The Librarium recently developed special Archive Barricades to stop nasty little parasites like me self from taking a peek at their juicier secrets.” She almost looked proud to wear such a demeaning title. Glad to be a thorn in the Librarium’s side more like. “I can get you guys past their security, but I won’t be able to touch their comms until those barricades are dealt with. Based on these schematics, I’d say there’s about two. One in the eastern and northern maintenance tunnels.

Mona closed down her Archive screens, but not before beginning a data transfer to Huangdi and Sania.
There ya go! Well, I’m going to see Cap’n and make the final arrangements. Meet me at the hangar for departure in about an hour.” Never missing a beat, Mona packed up the documents on the table and rolling them into a neat scroll. Tucking it under her arm, she turned to leave the barracks. During her ascent up the steps onto the deck, she quickly doubled back to offer one final wave. The excitement about tomorrow’s mission was apparent, even despite her normal, serious demeanor.
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Inkarnate
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Guild Airship
Barracks


“We'll be there.” Sania replied as Mona made their way away from her; thoughts about the mission still in her mind.

Mona's key words echoed in her mind; about cutting off the systems, dealing with barricades, and potentially guarding each other's backs in case everything went to hell. The idea that things could go bad was always at the forefront of her mind and being stranded behind enemy lines wasn't exactly something she wanted to think too much about. She had confidence in Huangdi, though she also had more than enough fear of Librarium agents to capture and interrogate them. The thought of it gave her chills, though she knew she had to try to calculate the possible outcomes of a mission when it came to voyages quite like this; and she owed the Cloud Chasers a great deal to push back her nerves and do her best. This was important.

She turned her attention back at Huangdi. It was such a relief he was her partner; there were few among them that she trusted as much.

“This could be a dangerous one.” She admittedly, nervously. “Are you up for it?”
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Leslie Hall
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Banksia Skyline Route #14: En route to the 5th Hierarchical Realm, Suphlatus

Arc 1, Chapter 1 Chasing Skies Edge

The ferocious storm that had wracked the ship’s hull mercilessly for hours began to subside. A light drizzle of rain sent ripples along the atmospheric field. They danced along the surface, colliding and intertwining in a calming display of ether. The sky was blanketed in thick sheets of black clouds, but otherwise the crew could see clearly. The floating islands of Pandora drifted beneath the ship, soils nourished with the first heavy rainfall of the wet season.

Ragnar stood at the helm of his ship; hands firmly placed along the ten and two positions as he guided the Chaser through the skies. To his right side, Mona stood at the ships Atlas – an old fashioned Magitech podium reinforced with iron braces and wood. Her fingers carefully adjusted two spherical nodes which hummed at the touch of her magic. An archive grid spread out before her; a map of the Free Skies in clear view to the navigator. Their ship was represented by a triangular icon, moving along a predesignated path towards a glowing blip.

Captain, the Chaser is approaching the drop off point within the next minute.” Mona turned towards Ragnar. The captain seemed rather despondent since the incident with Adelyn. Mona knew better than to bring it up. The ship’s icon on the grid was now on top of the desired coordinates. Ragnar nodded towards his navigator, beginning to steer the ship away. Mona pressed a weathered red button on the Atlas, speaking into an archaic microphone comprised of three crude slits in the podium.
Nimbus I, launching in T-Minus two minutes.” Her voice came through the intercom scratchy and distorted, but the message was received. She removed her hands from the podium and made her way past the captain. The grid dispersed, leaving the helm dimly lit. As Mona walked pasted Ragnar, she turned her head back and bid him farewell.

Good luck, Captain.
Aye. And to you, Ull’Mona.” He didn’t turn when he spoke, but Mona knew his words to be sincere. Making her way down into the ship, the young hacker approached the hangar to join the away team on their crucial mission. Despite her nerves, she maintained a brave front. She owed that to Sania and Huangdi.

Look on the bright side, she thought. The storm has passed.
That much was true; the storm had passed. Yet, the calmness that followed held an eerie vibe that had put both Mona and the captain on edge. After all, the storm would be the first of many.

Clover Village Train Station, Suphlatus

A flickering lantern cast a weak light along the deserted train stop. Moths swarmed the lonesome beacon, the only flame that still remained lit in the early hours of the day. The sky was dark, but along the eastern horizon one could detect the faint hue of an approaching sunrise.

There was nary a soul in sight on the platform. The security guard slumbered in his cabin, the faint sound of his snoring eclipsing the chirping of crickets. Beneath the solitary lantern, an older man sat with his arms folded impatiently. His rickety old knee bounced rhythmically, a sour scowl plastered across the wrinkles of his aged faced. He removed a pocket watch from the front pocket of his blazer, hanging his head in frustration upon realizing his train was nearly twenty minutes late. His thoughts drifted to the talk he’d heard of the flawless public transportation within major cities like Keter or Haven. He bet his bottom dollar that the other half didn’t have to sit and wait around this long for a bleeding train. Suppose that’s what you get for living out in the boonies.

Straightening back up, the man nearly leapt from his seat in shock. Standing before him at the edge of the platform was a lady. Despite her navy blue robes, he could tell by the litheness of her figure and the long, auburn ringlets that flowed down her back that this stranger was indeed female. He may have been getting older, but the man knew he was certainly not senile. There was no one else on this platform aside from him for the better part of an hour. He would have heard her approaching, surely. The lady seemed to pay him no mind, faced away towards the rails. In the distance, the faint blaring of a horn signaled the approach of the man’s train. He stood up, dragging his luggage towards the platform besides the robed woman - careful not to slip on the rain stained concrete.

When he got closer, he noticed the lady was wearing a mask of white porcelain. There were two slanted slits for eyes, as well as an intricate insignia of a third eye inside of a five point star on the forehead. The man instantly recognized this as the Librarium insignia. The train horn shattered the silence once more, this time much clearer. Now the train was in eyeshot.

’Bout bloody time. Make a man wait twenty extra minutes at this ungodly hour.” The porcelain faced lady barely flinched at his attempt to strike up a conversation.
I prefer to travel at this time. Less people.” Her words were soft spoken yet dismissive, just loud enough to hear. She spoke with a certain regality, a pride that was echoed through her unfaltering posture and dignified stance.

Aye, you got that right, lass. I’m off to visit my grandson in the next town over for the day. Figured I’d take the earliest train so I could make the most of it.” Speaking of his family warmed his weathered face with a gentle smile. His hand clutched a pocket watch which contained a family portrait of his grandson, his wife and their newborn daughter. The stranger ignored the trinket. The man, eager to share, held it out a bit more for her.

They look happy.” The stranger humored him, tilting her head ever so slightly to catch a glimpse of the picture. Another siren, this one loud enough to cause the rickety rails to shake worryingly. The man tucked his watch away, still beaming.
Her name’s Penelope. Penny for short. She’s their whole world. Didn’t think the whippersnapper would ever settle down and be a family man.
Humans are full of surprises.” The man nodded in agreement at her words. He paused for a moment, a puzzled look on his face, when the train came to a rolling stop before them. The engine continued to hum, and one final blast of the horn signaled it was time to board.

When the doors opened, the masked lady briskly stepped across the threshold. The man gathered his belongings, catching her with an abrupt call before she could disappear down the aisle.
Wait,” She stopped, but didn’t turn, “so where are you headed then?
She remained silent, a final warning siren letting the stop know they were soon to depart. When the sound had subsided, she turned back on a slight angle and offered her answer.

Banksia.” It was short, but it was all that was necessary.

Before the man could question her further, she pivoted on her heel and made her way to the back of the carriage. The driver, growing impatient, blared the siren twice in quick succession. Startled back to reality, the man hustled onto the train as the doors slid close. In just a moment’s time, the sky train began to move along the rails, gaining momentum until it was able to soar off the edge of the floating islands into the blackened sky.

Banksia Skyline Route #14: En route to the 5th Hierarchical Realm, Suphlatus


Hearty cheers filled the hangar, the smell of grog and perspiration permeating the air. The launch gates were open, an azure sky framed within the space. In the distance, dark clouds from the storm prior had begun floating off into the horizon. The Chasers, blessing the good Mother herself for such fortune, were relieved to not have the elements against them in today’s mission. The scouts were preparing to be sent out ahead first, tightening their glider harnesses securely around their torso. The worn leather straps had seen better days for sure.

Like most things aboard the Chasers, the gliders were outdated – paling in comparison to the equipment employed by the Librarium. A hard leather chassis secured the aetherwing deployer to the back, with several belts and straps around the chest, shoulders, waist and thighs keeping it all lodged in place. One only need charge the device with the smallest amount of ether, deploying a pair of luminescent wings for aerial travel. They may have lacked the aesthetics and functionality of newer, more efficient models, but they got the job done.

The crew stood around the scouts, watching as the ship’s engineers fixed an unusual device to their deployers. The white, sleek halo was in vast contrast to the obsolete design of the Chaser’s old harnesses. The engineers worked up a sweat trying to properly mend it together. After a resounding click, the halo lit up along with the deployer. Taking a step back, the engineer gestured for the scout to try out the latest modification.

The room cleared a circle around him, all curious to see the new device in action. The young lad lapped up the attention like an excited puppy. Putting his right foot forward, he shot a fist up into the air. A gentle ripple of magic resonated throughout the room before and iridescent light of the aetherwings poured out from the deployer. Yet just as quickly as they formed, the light faded away. Energy rippled across the boy, tessellating hexagons of ether, similar to that of the atmospheric disruptor, covered him from head to toe. As they formed, the boy’s visage began to disperse until he had disappeared completely.

His fellow crew members gasped in both shock and excitement. The engineer signed, clutching her hands to her chest in relief. She lamented about the fact that the camouflage wasn’t perfect. Sure enough, the other pirates began to take notice of a strange shimmer where the scout stood. The boy flickered back into view with a soft whirring noise that signaled the deactivation of the aetherwing. The crowd cheered, both for him and the engineer as the circle collapsed in to celebrate their breakthrough.

By Juno!” The crew spun around at Captain Ragnar’s voice – he’d been standing at the entrance to the hangar while the test was underway.
Ye’d make a fine Kiln pirate, Lass. I never seen someone replicate Librarium cloaking tech so well in all me life.” The engineer’s face went red, but she quickly composed herself with a formal salute. A few of her friends nudged her in the shoulder, chuckling away at her rigidness. Ragnar offered a hearty laugh before clearing his throat. Everyone kept going about their business, but they were sure to keep an ear out for their captain’s pe-mission brief.

I’ve word from Ull’Mona that her team is inside Banksia’s control tower. Scouts be ready to fly out as soon as yer cloaking rings are fixed to the gliders. Infiltration team,” Ragnar turned to the group he was sending to attack the sky train. Among them was Lazulin, Adelyn and Amara.
When I give the signal, the scouts will remove their camouflage and draw the Cleric Knights off of the train to deal with them. When that happens, you lot will be hidden nearby and will board the train. Take control of the cockpit and try not to damage the cargo. We’ll be helping a lot of starving people if we can pull this off.” He paused for a moment before turning to face Adelyn directly.

Highborn lass, let’s see if yer made of tougher stuff. Or are ye like all the other Keter nobles?” The captain jaunted. There were a few murmurs among the crowd, eyes staring in Adelyn’s direction. Not all were supportive of the Captain’s decision to stowaway a noble.

Watch ya back, Laz mate! Careful she don’t stick a knife in it while ye ain’t watching!” One pirate from the back spoke up, resulting in a wave of uproarious laughter and similar taunts. When they’d finished having their fun, the engineers announced that all cloaking devices were fixed to the scout group. They proceeded to help the infiltration group don their own gliders. The scouts lined up neatly at the edge of the hanger, awaiting the Captain to give the signal to fly out. He held his hand high, the tension building in the air around them. Clenching his fist firmly, the captain let out a mighty bellow.

Get going yer mangy coves!” With one final cheer, the scouts slipped away out of sight as they dove off the hangar. Flashes of aetherwing activations came and went. Soon enough the group had dispersed along the sky rail in preparation for their task. From this distance, it was nigh impossible to notice the telltale shimmer of the camouflage.

The infiltration team was left alone with the captain and the engineers. Ragnar stared out over the vast expanse of the Free Skies, keeping an eye out for the train.

Right, enough lazing about. Get yer selves in position as soon as possible.” Ragnar turned away from the group and began to make his way back towards the helm. The ship needed to have its own cloaking device activated. As he approached the steps, he turned back to face the group.

If we’re victorious today, we’ll be dealing a huge blow to the Librarium. I have faith in ye. May the Mother light your path.” And with those final words, Captain Ragnar ascended the steps – leaving them with a heavy weight on their shoulders.

Banksia Central Station, Suphlatus


The liveliness of Banksia Central made it almost too easy for the Chasers to slip in unnoticed. With some simple disguises to make them appear as locals, the group blended seamlessly in with the rushing businessmen, students and friends catching up for a gab. The group had met with a member of the Smuggler’s Guild, a man who called himself Dusty Cooper. A clear alias; every pirate worth their salt knew just how Crow’s guild of spies and assassins operated. On their way to the tower, Mona made idle chat about how she once met Crow. Though she wasn’t sure if it was actually Crow, or one of he spies sent to meet them disguised as her. There was very little information on the Pirate King, apart from that she hailed from Xia. Mona thought Huangdi would find that tidbit interesting.

Dusty had presented the team with the appropriate passes and clearances to access the tower. They needed to be smart – large groups entering the Banksia control tower would look suspicious. Their entrance was staggered. Huangdi and two others entered first as a group of maintenance workers, while Sania and the other two Chasers followed about twenty minutes after dressed as operators. Mona stayed behind, tucked away in a nice little corner of the stations old railway tunnels where she was in range to hack the towers security.

It’s almost funny how smooth this is going. Not that I want to tempt fate or anything.” Her voice echoed through Sania and Huangdi’s minds as they made their way down into the maintenance tunnels. The pair were separated by their groups, but still could communicate due to Mona’s Archive.

The hacker’s fingers flew across her various interfaces, sliding dials and listening in to radio signals. Mona giggled as she set the towers security cameras on a continuous loop of footage. The oldest trick in the book.
I’ve messed with their cameras and there are no patrols of the tunnels scheduled for another fifteen minutes. Nobody is watching you, but I wouldn’t drag my feet. Even an idiot can figure out that the security has been tampered with.

Mona brought up her schematics, tracking how close each group was to their respective blocker.
You’re not far, Huangdi. Sania, take a right at the end of this hall and follow it to the end. You’re looking for a massive generator, it should have a bunch of wires and lacrima attached to it. Destroy them as soon as you find them – don’t worry they aren’t that tough. I think.

She watched the little blips on her grid slowly, but surely approach their target. At this point, she took a deep sigh before opening up the channel once more.
Look, I know I’ve already gone through this, but once you destroy those blockers the alarm will be tripped. I’ll do what I can to slow down security, but I doubt you’re getting out of there without a fight. Just stay calm – find each other first and foremost, then meet at the rendezvous point at the southern tunnel. Godspeed, friends.” The channel shut off once more. Mona alerted the captain, letting him know that her team was nearly in position. Though over such a distance, communicating via archive had some severe latency. He wouldn’t receive the message for another few minutes.

She muttered a silent prayer to Juno under her breath. She was never a spiritual person, but right now she felt the Chasers could use all the help they could get.
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When the other crew members had surfaced from the barracks, having come up on deck to perform whatever individual duties they had, whether that be cleaning, altering the sails, etc, etc, Adelyn was very quick to make herself scarce. For a few reasons, most importantly was that she didn't want to be seen right now. Which also was for a few different reasons. Such as not wanting to be showing a weaker side to this motley crew of rag-tag misfits, just simply being sick of all their presences and most important of all she didn't want them to see her and Laz together like this. She didn't want weird rumours spreading around, unaware that such ones already probably were making the rounds.

So instead she retreated into the medic bay, usually where one would find the resident doctor in Alex. They would probably find him there right now as well, but he was so drunk and out of it that he had been carried and passed out in a bed. At least he would be quiet for a while, which effectively gave Adelyn some quiet alone time to herself and her thoughts. She had just a little bit on her plate to consider. She wouldn't leave unless Alex came to and annoyed her too much, not even for food and even sleeping there for the night as compared to the barracks. And if he did annoy her, well she would probably smash a bottle on his head or something to take him back out of it.


The Next Day

Despite what she herself thought, she slept rather easily that night. Well compared to most that she had spent here. Suppose she had vented some of her frustrations out, but it was still a far cry of a 'good nights sleep'. Maybe it was because she wasn't lying in some uncomfortable, glorified net? Perhaps, but it wasn't like these were actually the best mattresses going around either. There was a really loose spring that dug into her back and was uncomfortable as hell. But, better than nothing. Wouldn't stop her from complaining later. Oh by Juno, no it wouldn't. That would be something to bring up at a later time.

Not that it was to say she felt rested. In fact, she was feeling more towards the exhausted end of the spectrum and just laid there for several minutes. Staring up at the wooden ceiling above her, one might've thought she was contemplating something. But the truth was far, far more boring. She was staring up there because she had nothing better to do, and would rather think about how old, tattered and worn away the timber was then thinking about literally anything else right now. They had some big, important mission today. Honestly to her, it was literally just a train robbery. Theft.

Honestly, they were no better than a group of lowlife bandits at this point.

After what felt like an eternity the girl eventually dragged herself out of the bed. More because that spring that dug into her back had reached impossible to deal with levels of annoyance to her than much else, but also because of the loud rumbling her stomach made. Perhaps skipping last night's meal was a mistake in the long run, but she just didn't want to put up with others. So, a necessary sacrifice.

Once she was able to get some old, semi-stale bread she was able to sate the hunger for the time being. They didn't really have much else, well nothing that Adelyn that didn't seem as rotten as that one crewmembers teeth, and this was perhaps the true reason behind this 'heist' of theirs. The Captain claimed it was to help the people, but really it seemed like it was more they were running out of food and this seemed like the better option. Suppose they wouldn't be pirates if they bought their supplies like normal people.

She proceeded to spend the rest of her time before the mission doing what she could usually be found doing. Sitting in some corner of the ship by herself, reading. Though she really couldn't get into it, she kept the book in front of her and pretended to do so. Turning a page every now and then to keep the act up. Why one might ask? Because it kept most of the riffraff away for the most part. Or if they did approach, if she gave them the cold shoulder long enough they eventually left.

Shortly before they were about to be called in for the mission, she sighed and closed her book. Suppose she had thought about it long enough. There was no word to describe how much she loathed this decision. She was aware that this would probably be the 'point of no return'. If she proceeded with this, then she really would make herself an enemy of the Librarium. But at the same time, she was already viewed as one anyway. She didn't really have a lot to gain from doing this, but she did stand to lose what little she had left if she didn't. Even if the losses from her doing it were only slightly less.

Slowly dragging herself up, she made the exceptionally slow walk towards the hanger. Almost as if her legs were made of lead. Luckily for her, she was one of the last to arrive, though seeing how slowly she had moved it was no surprise, and thus managed to sneak in without much fuss while everyone's attention was drawn to the engineer and scout that were testing out the cloaking technology. She wasn't sure why everyone was so amazed by the sight, but then again seeing how primitive and outdated most of the Cloud Chasers tech was this was probably the equivalent of them inventing the wheel. Or possibly discovering fire. Neanderthals, the lot of them.

Without a word, she coolly took her place beside Amara, making a concentrated effort to put the girl between herself and Laz. It was as obvious as night were to follow the day that the former heiress was obviously not happy about being here, but still, here she was. That said something at least.

Soon after the Captain entered the room. While everyone turned his way, Adelyn didn't even glance in his direction. A heavy scowl forming as she heard the all too familiar booming voice. The incident from yesterday was still fresh on her mind.

And she didn't seem to plan on letting it go anytime soon at the very least. She only turned his way when she felt his gaze fall on her directly, her eyes narrowing considerably as they locked for just a brief moment. If looks could kill, she could've killed him two hundred times over. At least.

But unfortunately for her, they didn't. A shame indeed.

Her response to his words contained no more than an annoyed, disdainful click of her tongue and her diverting her attention to literally anything else. Oh yes, that dirty, disgusting looking stain over on the wall there that probably was the result of someone expelling the contents of their stomachs everywhere after drinking too much? Yeah, she would prefer to look at that then give Ragnar even a nanosecond more of her time. And if she had to make a bet on who made that stain, she would go all out on Alex.

It also helped her ignore the looks she got and the murmuring throughout the crowd. Of course, they weren't happy with a noble being amongst them, especially not an Amberfield. To Sky Pirates, they were turncoats. Traitors and cowards who turned their back on their fellow wizards all those years ago. The fact that many of the family had also served as Hunters, Knights or both and ruthlessly took down Sky Pirates also didn't help. One announcement wouldn't change years of animosity towards her family. And as much as they didn't like her, she liked them even less.

"You should be more concerned about your own." Adelyn's tone was a cold as the look that she gave the first pirate that spoke. A look that made the artic seem like the Arabic desert. When an engineer came over to help her into her glider, she immediately shoved the poor pirate away rather frantically. "Keep your dirty, rotten hands off! By Juno, who knows the last time you bathed.....judging by that smell, I doubt you ever had." Adelyn took a quick sniff and made a face. For the love of Juno they needed a place to clean themselves here.

After a few more, failed, attempts to help her into the glider, each attempt simply meeting the same result the poor engineer finally threw their hands up in the air and trudged off. Especially after each attempt just escalated the insults, the poor engineer. With a huff, Adelyn sloppily put it on by herself. It was clearer than how much she didn't want to be here that she simply just didn't know how to wear one of these things. In fact, she had never worn one before and that much was very much so on display right now.

Had she managed to put the harness on backwards? Dear Juno, she was wearing her glider the wrong way round. What a terrific, inspiring way to start this mission off. The foreign weight dragging her onto the ground the instant she moved her hands away, not expecting it to weigh so much. She had seen her brothers use gliders before, but none so rudimentary or crude as these. These were ancient.

At least things could only get better from here.

.....Right?
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"Are you going to let me help you, or are you fine with becoming a splatter on the jungle floor?" Laz's voice piped up behind Adelyn, his own glider already harnessed as he slipped a couple of knives into their sheaths along his belt. A couple of the others pointed their way and laughed, as his attempts to go comfort her had not gone unnoticed by others of the crew. However, when one of Laz's knives suddenly found itself embedded a inch away from the face of one of the men, they were quick to scatter while Laz made the trek over to retrieve his weapon.

"I can watch my back just fine, so the rest of you worry about getting ready. Big mission today, and it'd be a shame if one of ya fuckwits mucked it up because you were too busy makin' fun to check yer equipment." Once more, Laz spoke with a rather strange coldness to his voice, his smile towards the teasing crewmates not really reflecting the look in his eyes as he dared any of them to say something else, yanking the knife out of the wood with a flourish. "Just because Muscles can kick my ass like it's nothing doesn't mean I have to take shit from the rest of ya. Got it?"

The other members of the team walked off with little more than grumbles and rude gestures in Laz's direction, but that was enough for the boy as he turned his attention back to Adelyn, knife returned to its sheath and eyes a bit warmer than before, but not very.

"So, humility or death, made yer choice yet?"
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Amara Solidor


Amara, for her part, kept out of the way of the hustle and bustle of the Engineers. She listened carefully to the briefing on the mission and now was content to stand quietly by until she was needed. She was keyed up and excited at the prospect of slaughtering more Librarium dogs, maybe even getting a shot at the Alphas.

That didn't mean she wasn't bored to hell just waiting.

She tapped her foot impatiently as she mentally hurried the gearheads, who were oo-ing and ah-ing over the fancy tech. Well, fancy for this rustbucket anyway. Stifling a big yawn, she shifted to a more comfortable position where she was leaning against a metal contraption that she had been assured that (probably) won't kill her. She hadn't slept well. Not that she had for years now. Fortunately, that is what coffee was invented for and she was chugging her way through her third mug like a druggie. It was disgusting. It looked like, had the consistency of and tasted like mud, but she didn't care. It woke her up and gave her the kick to start another day.

She sipped coffee and let herself slip into her own thoughts. The incident yesterday was bugging her. Not that tantrum Addy threw, or the book she literally threw, nor the casual use of force the Captain used to settle the matter, but Silver Claw. When he had casually steadied the two of them, he had said to her: “Let’s hope you’re more useful than this lot.” and she looked him in the eye with a smile saying, "I am." Confident at that time. So confident.

But after last night, she was feeling less like her usual self. Uneasy. Shaken. Those same nightmares had haunted her sleep for two years and she had quickly learned to deal with them. But now? They left her feeling like she was made of glass: fragile and easily shattered. Was it nervousness? This was the first major mission she had officially been assigned to. Unofficially, she'd snuck on a few before. Since they turned out well, the Captain had turned a blind eye. But this time was different. This time, she had been singled out and chosen. Why did that make a difference? She didn't care about these pirates and their petty grievances. She just wanted to see the Librarium burn and this was her best way to go about it. Power. She needed power, like always. Once she had it, she could leave these people in the ash left in her wake.

Her eye was twitching. She could feel it. Twitch twitch twitch. She absently traced it with a finger.

What was she thinking about again? Right. Yesterday. Silver Claw had steadied her and she had felt the enormous power the man held. And she felt that same feeling of unease that always came when she saw him. And yet he had been almost gentle. He was a puzzle. But not one that she was interested in solving, just one that was worth pulling out of the box every now and then to admire how mysterious its pieces were.

She mentally put it away for future puzzling when she was approached by an engineer bearing the diving harness that had a name she couldn't remember for the life of her. He was polite in answering her questions, and she, in turn, listened carefully to his instructions. If she was going to be entrusting her life to this hunk of junk, she wanted to know all about it.

Now why not apply that philosophy elsewhere...? She glanced sidelong at her teammates for this mission, who were also getting outfitted, but with considerably more fuss then herself. Maybe later. She shrugged. She didn't feel up to making small talk.

"There yar. All set." The engineer said, checking one last strap before stepping back to admire his handiwork. "Ya know how to work this, right, lass?" Amara gave him a nod. "G'luck then." He moved off to attend to his other duties.

She watched him go, then pulled out a few leaves of paper covered in her spidery scrawl of notes and rescanned the important parts. There was something she wanted to attempt, and this seemed like a good opportunity. She looked around for a relatively clear section of floor, quickly locating a spot that was free of miscellaneous objects, and slightly free of people. Coincidentally, that happened to be around Laz and Addy. After all, no sane person wanted to be nearby when the two of them were in the same room. But that worked for Amara. She moved through the bustle with ease to pop up nearby the pair. " 'scuse me." She murmured as she passed between them, intent on the area beyond.

There, plenty of room. A few paces further and the small white-haired girl thrust out her hands, palms out in a dramatic pose. She closed her eyes and began to gather magic. Most of the crew were either mages themselves or experienced enough to feel magic at work, and a few actually knew Amara's magic so a small circle of space cleared out quickly.

She took in a deep breath and let it out again. Magic grew thick enough to be visible as a shimmer in the air around the girl. It grew progressively thicker and stared to swirl about in a circular fashion. The still air inside the hanger began to move, the presence of so much concentrated magic creating an imbalance of pressure that manifested as a phantom breeze. Amara's face grew tense, and her breathing haggard. She barely understood what she was doing, guided by instinct and a little knowledge.

Power, this power. This was the power she craved. This was the power she hungered for. But the meager amount she could bring mearly whet her appetite, leaving her thirsting for more. MORE! She needed MORE! Magic flowed through her veins, bringing with it a tingling euphoria that crackled and stung like electricity.

Faster and faster the magic swirled and when it reached it's peak, it suddenly stilled. Amara opened her eyes, seeing nothing, then slowly and clearly, she chanted.

"Divine breath of the Gods, fragrance of the flowers, bearer of Seed, Merchant, and Wayfarer, alike! Yet sower of fire and pestilence. Soaring breeze! Raging tempest! Tempestuous gale! Winds of a beginning, blow now." She ended the chant calmly, moving her hands held down at her sides. Magic streamed out of her, leaving her once again hollow and empty.

At first, nothing seemed to happen. But, it one looked closer, in front of the amateur Summoner was a disturbance in the air, a few feet off the ground. A core of bright greenish light, about the size of a fist. It pulsed gently, then expanded rapidly, stopping at roughly the size of a man's head.

It had no obvious form, it gave the impression of a bundle of wind, giving off steams and winking firefly-likelights, swirling about in a vaguely spherical shape. It darted about, almost playfully, always shifting, always moving, sometimes briefly disappearing from sight to reappear again in another spot. It bobbed close to Amara and circled her, giving off a playful feel. Amara sagged slightly. She did it. She had summoned an Air Elemental.

It was small, and as Elementals go, not very strong, but perhaps that was best. Despite it's looks, it contained a massive amount of power, enough to give A class wizards trouble. Elementals were tricky. Catching and binding one was no easy task as they tended to be...independent, as they are forces of nature, and it was only possible to lure them with something that had an affinity with the element. Fortunately, a flying airship was more then enough for a minor wind elemental. But they were also dangerous. If it got free, the first thing it would do is unleash all its magic winds on their summoner. Galeforce winds, in this case. But it won't. Amara will was far stronger then this elemental's. Even if it did, somehow, she could scatter it with a thought.

The newly summoned elemental darted about, seemingly curious about it's surroundings. It would rush up to whatever person or thing that caught it's interest then stop and bob around it for a moment before rushing off, leaving a gentle breeze in it's wake.

The show finished, the hustle and bustle of the Chasers continued without missing a step.

Amara wearily stumbled over to a nearby stack of crates to sit. That had been more costly than she had anticipated, she thought she had it right, but she had spent far more power then necessary... She retrieved the papers from her pocket and a pen and started taking notes and writing down her thoughts. The air elemental continued to fly about the hanger, seemingly not minded by Amara. It caused a little alarm here and there, but it seemed harmless and more playful than malicious. The worst it did was blow off someone's hat or flip up a skirt or two, one of which belonged to Adelyn nearby. Purely by coincidence, of course.

Despite herself, Amara smiled faintly.

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The sound of a familiar voice made Adelyn narrow her eyes. Great, just who she wanted to come to talk to her. And he was using such vulgar cusses again, though it came as no surprise to the young lady. He was just a savage after all. "I'm fine thank you very much. I have this under control." Hmphing, the girl pushed herself back up to her feet only to stumble slightly. Her hands went to hold the backwards glider up, glaring daggers at the contraption.

"They make it seem so easy..." she mumbled softly under her breath, her thoughts filled with memories of her brothers using gliders. Sure, they were state of the art and hot off the press, and these ones were...what, the first prototypes? But still, they had used them so effortlessly. Yet she was struggling with just putting the thing on. It was just another source of frustration for the girl.

It was about this time that Amara went to push past them, Adelyn was too busy fiddling with the glider to try and turn it the other way, which she now noted was the way the others wore theirs much to her chagrin, to really pay the girl much attention. She just let the girl pass and grumbled some words under her breath.

"I said I have this." She snapped at Laz, pulling it up and back over her head. "So don't touch me. Don't even come within five metres of me." she managed to wriggle out of the suit, glowering at him while patting down her shirt. "I don't even want to breathe the same air as you so refrain from breathing in my vicinity. In fact please cease breathing and save us all the trouble."

It was at this moment that the magic in the room caught her interest and she cast a quick glance in Amara's direction as she finished summoning her wind elemental. Huh, so that was the short girl's magic? Adelyn hadn't really seen it in action before. She didn't even really know if she had talked to the girl yet, then again she didn't really care to talk to any of them. But at least she seemed somewhat...decent.

Holding the harness to chest, she watched somewhat intrigued as the wind elemental jetted around the room. One of the first places it stopped was right in front of her followed by a gentle breeze, her face doing it's best impersonation of a tomato briefly and a loud thud before a flash of white.

As in, a flash that enveloped the entire room and blinded anyone unfortunate to be looking at Adelyn at the time her skirt was flipped. The pure white light lasted for no longer than a couple of seconds, but it was enough for Adelyn. But poor Laz would've been right at the epicentre of the spell. When it faded, the glider was on the ground and Adelyn was holding her skirt down, her face still flushed crimson.

"....Say your prays." And at that, she shot a Divine Arrow at the wind elemental.
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"Riiiiight. . ." Laz shook his head as he placed his hands on his hips, trying to think of a way to make sure that this princess didn't end up crashing against something almost as stubborn as she was. Before he could continue, however, the other resident blonde mage in their crew decided to push her way through the two of them. Raising an eyebrow at the small summoner as she passed, his attention was unfortunately pulled back to Adelynn as she continued to struggle with the glider harness.

"Sure, I'll get on that as soon as you decide to listen to someone when they're trying to help you out." A sigh escaped him as he massaged the bridge of his nose, starting to wonder if letting the girl fall to her death would really be that bad an idea. She definitely seemed gung-ho about it.

His thoughts were interrupted, however, by the sudden upsurge of magic coming from the direction of the little blonde mage that had passed by them, having decided to put on a rather elaborate show for them all as she called forth another one of her critters. While some of the others on in the room looked on with some amount of awe, Laz couldn't help but find it feeling more than a little . . . much. That and it took way too long for his tastes, especially when the result was . . . was just. . .

"Is that it? All that effort and magic. . . for a little cloud?" Laz couldn't help but feel as if Amara's magic was just a tad wasteful but before he could say anything else about it, the little cloud flew by him and Adelynn. With it came a gust of wind, and before anyone could do anything, the elemental had blown up Adelynn's skirt. For most in the hanger area, what followed after was a blinding flash of light as the princess tried to keep the scandalous sight from the brigands and layabouts that still hung around in the room. However, as the light died down, Laz himself turned away from Adelynn, hands over his eyes as he acted like he'd been blinded like the rest, cursing and tossing about like many others in the room. Unlike the others, however, his the young mage's face had turned a rather bright red.

His magic had protected him from Adelynn's flash, so he had seen everything. He also knew that if Adelynn knew, he knew that Adelynn would stop at nothing to gouge out his eye right out of his head. A thought that was reinforced as he 'recovered'to see her blast at the elemental with a bolt of light, taking a small gulp as he tried to regain his composure.

"A-Anyway. . ., now that your little show is over with Amara, could you please get that fart cloud under control? We're trying to runa stealth mission here, so if you can't gurantee that things behavior, don't fuckin bring it, kay? I'd rather you called on your pretty boi instead, at least he can follow instructions." Laz cleared his throat again, casting a few glances Adelynn's way but refusing to hold any kind of sustained eye contact as he spoke to her. "And, uh. . . Adelynn. . . if you don't want to, ya know, get involved when things get heated, just stay in the back, ya hear? And let someone help you into your harness already!"

With his piece said, Laz was quick to start walking away to seemingly inspect a row of gliders and weapons, running a hand over his face as he tried to get his mind off what he saw and on the mission at hand.

Calm down Laz. It was just some underwear, you've seen it a bunch of times. . . well, not girl underwear but, ya know, no big deal, right? No big deal. . . . no big deal at all. . . ssssssssssshit. Laz could only let out a groan as his face took on another shade of red, his imagination getting away from him more than he liked to admit. I'm so glad that no one on this damn ship can read minds, or I'd be dead a thousand times over.
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