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Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Scarifar
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Scarifar Presto~!

Member Seen 2 hrs ago

Location: Home of Tears
Level: 3
Experience: 50/30 (Level up available)
Word Count: <750 (+1 EXP)
@Dark Cloud@Archmage MC

Rubick walked on, not a care in the world, as he window shopped in the Home of Tears. There were various shops displaying various products, from clothing to food to household objects. Sometimes there was a magic-related store that really caught his interest, and he took the time to stare through the window to marvel at their wares for a few seconds, then nodding in appreciation and moving on once again. He couldn't help but feel that he was forgetting something, though. Normally he didn't have a problem with that. After all, he forgot things all the time. But this time, it was different. He pondered for a moment, then turned around to see Artorias. Then he remembered. He was supposed to be returning to the Seekers!

And so Rubick increased his pace, making his way back to the hotel. Along the way, he noticed his body becoming increasingly... itchy. And his attempts to scratch were only met with pain as he realized he had suddenly gotten bug bites on him. He had no idea how that could've happened, but that was certainly going to be an annoyance. Not too long after, he was also hit with a wave of lethargy, as if he hadn't slept last night, and a mild case of nausea, like he had eaten something that made his stomach revolt. He leaned heavily on his staff as he walked, eager to return to the hotel to recover from whatever had suddenly afflicted him.

Once he arrived, Rubick said to Artorias, "Here we are. The Seekers are out today, but they should be back by tomorrow. And hopefully none of them will die." Rubick turned to the front desk and booked a room for Artorias, then proceeded to leave him to his own devices, confident that he could find his way around. Rubick headed back to his own room to rest and recover.

Rubick made his way down to the lobby and spotted a familiar bug queen. "Ahh, Queen Sectonia! How gracious to make your presence known to me again!" Rubick greeted Sectonia. "And I can't believe you all left me behind! I wanted to test my abilities against that Consul, and now I'll have to wait for the next one to show up!" Needless to say, he was upset. It had been one of the few things he was looking forward to when he learned of the Consuls' existence, after all.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Yankee
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Yankee God of Typos

Member Online

Level: 8 - Total EXP: 165/80 ------ Level: 6 - Total EXP: 105/60
𝙱𝙿 ●●●● ---------------------------- 𝙱𝙿 ●●●●
Word Count: 1134 (+2 exp)
Location: The Under

Neither Primrose nor Therion followed Ms. Fortune out of the tower's window. Instead, they trudged back the way they'd come with most of the other Seekers. At some point Queen Sectonia was summoned away from them, which Primrose took to mean that the Consul was contained and now it was the alien queen's job to use her striker and get some answers. When the other half of their group emerged from the tower with the news that the Consul was dead, it was met with disappointment in varying shades.

"I suppose our plan was too optimistic," Primrose mused, her personal feelings on the matter complicated. They'd violently deposed a tyrant and menace, but said tyrant just so happened to be a child. And in doing so, they missed an opportunity to learn more about the Consuls - who they really were, their plans, their motives. Given how tired she was, she nearly missed the portion of coins pushed her way while she thought about P's fate. "Oh - thank you."

It was a hefty amount, certainly enough to draw Therion away from any thoughts he'd had on the matter. After getting his share the thief hovered around Sectonia whom Kamek had said was holding the stash, his feline ears flicking. "What else did you find?" he asked, but besides the money most everything else were large (well, currently shrunken) pieces one might expect to see in some rich person's manor. Luxury furniture, ornately framed paintings, and the like. Nothing he wanted to deal with once they were brought back to their normal size.

The Seekers hurried away from Gallo Tower as fast as their fatigued bodies could carry them, wanting for rest. Primrose and Therion were of the same mind when they split off from the group: they wouldn't be staying in the Habbo Hotel again. Primrose let the other Seekers know as much before they left to find other lodgings free from the consequences of P's actions. When they found a new motel they booked rooms next door to each other and tucked in for some much needed sleep.

It was a few hours later when Therion woke up. He'd never needed much shut eye, and more often than not didn't have opportunity to get a full night's rest. Even if it was perpetually dark underground save for the city's lights, his internal clock registered as "day," and so he roused himself up, stretched, and left the room.

I doubt we'll be back here anytime soon, he thought to himself. If we get the rest of those mask pieces tonight we'll be killing some monster then crawling out of these tunnels and going back to that base someone mentioned I guess.

He stood outside of the room Primrose was staying in and knocked on the door. He knew her to be an early riser, but that was under normal circumstances. Lately neither of their lives was anything close to normal. When he heard nothing from behind the door he knocked again. This time a shuffling sound reached his ears and a few moments later the door opened to reveal a dancer.

"Again?" Therion asked, unimpressed.

"What? I needed to get stronger."

Primrose flipped her hair and cowl over her shoulder, quite satisfied with the changes. She'd been honest with herself earlier in that Cornelia's barbs about her looks hadn't gotten to her, but now her appearance was a little closer to what she was used to. Her outfit was more cohesive as well, and she sensed the new addition to her magic repertoire. The latter was most important. If she hadn't fused with the pyromancer days ago she wouldn't have been able to stave off the poison and heal the Seekers, if she hadn't fused with the Rosaria or the Amazon it's possible she wouldn't have been able to recover after taking a direct hit from the Broodmother. The more abilities she had access to, the better.

"Whatever." Therion dismissed the changes and turned to walk down the hall while Primrose adjusted her dress, feather mantle covering most of her cleavage but creating a cheeky window of fabric instead. The dancer closed the door behind her as she moved to follow him.

"It's close enough to the time everyone will meet, but now that I'm not quite so tired I realize we never chose a meeting place." An understandable oversight, considering the exhausting battle they'd had. Most of the Seekers probably stayed at the Habbo Hotel, but there were a few unaccounted for still. Rubick and Omori hadn't gone with them to the tower, so it was possible they were out in the city completely ignorant to what had happened. Ichiban presumably had somewhere else to stay, so who knew where he'd retired to.

"Same lobby as this morning's as good a place to check as any."

"Mhm. Shall we?"

Therion shook his head. "Commissioned something earlier, so I'm gonna pick that up first." The duo had exited their motel and stood under the awning, a pair of umbrellas in each of their hands. Therion glanced in the direction he'd be heading before looking back at Primrose. "I'll meet you all there later. Or wherever."

Even in a city of monstrous folks, it probably wouldn't be hard to find the Seekers again. The Travelers went in opposite directions, simple gray umbrella heading to the smithy and black and white polka dot umbrella toward the Habbo Hotel.

When Primrose arrived it was a little too early to catch most of her companions in passing. She checked in with the clerk, who pointed her in the direction he'd seen one of their party go. She walked leisurely toward the city's center where a large fountain connected each district. It was a good place to stake out for people passing through, and Primrose wasn't disappointed to find one of the Seekers in a cafe by the water.

The dancer closed her umbrella and entered the establishment, taking a seat unbidden at the table Nadia occupied. She flashed the Feral a small smile in case she wasn't immediately recognizable as Primrose before flagging down waitstaff to order her own coffee.

"I didn't find anyone at the hotel, so I'm glad I found you here," she said. She was considering some light conversation topics when her drink arrived, so she sipped on that instead. Their world saving mission made it a little hard to get to know each other a personal level, beyond what each of them could offer in battle. There was also a part of Primrose that thought that in the end, it didn't matter. Either way the opportunity to chat would present itself eventually if not now, as Primrose noted the Koopa family passing by. "There they go," she noted, letting Nadia handle calling out to them.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by TruthHurts22
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Member Seen 36 min ago

Rank 6
38 / 60 EXP

Underground Nexus

A sharp pain seared through Raz's skull. In hindsight, maybe trying to read the mind of warped psi-adjacent creatures was a bad idea. If only Raz had completed that correspondence course for gaining Foresight, he wouldn't need the hind part at all.

"P-Peach?" Raz called out, the sense of familiarity hitting right before he cut their connection. It really was her. "Wait, don't, it's definitely Peach!" Raz shouted further, raising his voice, though between being literally invisible and the din of battle his words fell on deaf ears.

A bit of backhanded luck struck, with the Peach Other (ohh, the Other Peach!) getting contained in a psychic box of some kind. That's the scientific term for it. The box blinked out of sight, revealing a new group parked by one of the entrance tunnels, having arrived during the fight most likely.

"Wha--" Raz started to say, then stopped. His active Brain Drive was extending the usual bounds of his Invisibility, meaning that even with the clearing smoke he couldn't be seen - or even sensed, since these were other psychics they were dealing with.

So Raz made a choice.

He made a mad dash for the truck, not wasting much time in standing around being gobsmacked, and reached it just as it started to peel out. Raz leapt onto the back of the truck, clinging along its bumper as it sped away. It wasn't the best of places to be, especially since his Brain Drive conveniently powered down at this time. Knowing he'd become a visible boy any moment Raz, as quickly as he could managed, clambered down under the truck's bumper, scrambling through its undercarriage, clinging to bars and axels and whatever else the underside of a truck had.

It'd be a bumpy ride, but he'd been through bumpier.
304 Words
+1 EXP
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Zoey Boey
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Zoey Boey Spider!

Member Seen 7 hrs ago

Sakura Level 9: 46/90
Karin Level 5: 43/50
Location: Seiran Tunnels -> Hideout
Word Count: 697
Points Gained: 2
New EXP Balance--- Sakura Level 9: 48/90
Karin Level 5: 44/50

Sakura stirred as Blazermate’s light overcame her. It didn’t take long for her wounds to seal cleanly and smoothly. Much nicer than the zombification process Blazermate did, for sure. Sakura opened her eyes and looked at Blazermate.

”O-oh! Blazermate-san. You saved me. Thank you.” Her head was clear now, though after the relief of life and health wore off, the worry and fear for Peach’s wellbeing returned.

Karin was surprised to see Geralt lose his cool, though, Karin had missed the moment where Sakura had been so gravely injured.

When the battle was over, and the cavalry arrived, Sakura angrily confirmed the traitor who had metamorphed Peach. “That rotten sneak! It was her. I saw her! Here and at the gym.” She brought her clenched fists down and breathed out, Karin setting an unusually gentle hand on her shoulder.

But whoever these Seiran Defence Force people were, they were Peach’s only hope, so Sakura and Karin were glad they existed. Even if there arrival was abrupt, to the Street Fighters it came as a big relief. Really, what could they done to help her? Seeing Peach like that had distressed Sakura to the point of irrational action. ”I couldn’t believe she could just be gone like that…” She said, rubbing her arm and staring, ashamed, at her shoes.

”It’s all right, Miss Sakura.” Karin said. ”I didn’t get to do much battling at the end there. Perhaps you and I could spar after dinner?” She offered.

Sakura, still feeling blue, brightened a bit nonetheless. ”Sounds fun.”

Back at the hideout, Karin eyed Geralt knowingly, while Sakura looked at him with more concern after his speech. She caught the tail end of his furious barrage and it made her nervous. Ever since he had fused with the Orphan, Sakura had been worried and a little distant towards Geralt.

”And with Peach…gone, we can’t even unfuse you if we wanted too.” She said, sounding sick to her stomach. Sadly, she ate the turkey and ham sandwich in front of her.

She thought about how Raz had helped her with her own psychic damage problem. ”Maybe Raz could- oh, man.” She began, mouth full of sandwich, before she remembered the little psychic wasn’t with them anymore, either.

”Don’t talk with your mouthful. It’s impolite.” Karin chastised without looking, tone light. Before Sakura could respond, Karin continued.

”And thank you, Mr. Goldlewis, for the meal.” She said.

”I know the loss of the Princess has put a damper on things, but don’t let that distract you from the overall success of the mission. As we continue in our journey, we will find the answers we seek.” She said with absolute confidence.

”Yeah...” Sakura said, making sure to swallow this time. ”We’re Seekers, not…Thinkers.” She said, though that sounded better in her head.

”...Indeed.” Karin responded wryly. ”All this to say, we made it through the mission with only a single casualty, and it was not even a death. Our wayward allies will no doubt report back to us with their findings.”

”The thing we need to focus on is tracking down that sniper who shot Peach! I saw her do it.” Sakura said, righteous anger lifting her spirits. Though she didn’t mean to be dismissive of Benedict’s thoughts, questions about the motivations of whoever or whatever weren’t worth thinking about from here to Sakura.

”That changes everything. That’s the real mystery. The only reason we should engage with any of this political crap is to get to the bottom of that! And then I’ll make that rotten Anya eat dirt for what she did. Right after she’s done telling us everything she knows.” Sakura’s tone was resolute.

”We’re in a district full of mind readers.” Karin said. ”There must be some way of tracking her, or whatever group she’s affiliated with, down. We just need a lead.”

”Maybe I could go and talk to Gemma?” Sakura said. She liked the idea, but facing him after her little breakdown brought heat to her cheeks. ”She was hanging out with him when I first saw her.” With that, she sat back on her hands and knees. There wasn’t exactly a huge dining table in the hideout, so Karin and Sakura were sitting on the floor next to their respective cots.

”If all else fails, I’m sure it will not be long before we find something else to do. We will find victory as long as we continue onward.” Karin concluded. Hopefully she had succeeded in at least presenting the group with the possibility of action. And reminding everyone that their mission was ultimately a success couldn’t hurt either, right? With Peach gone, Karin felt a void in the group dynamic. Perhaps she was the one to fill it. Only time would tell.
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Yankee
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Yankee God of Typos

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Word Count: 536 (+1 exp)
Level: 4 - Total EXP: 129/40
Location: Dystopiascape - Valley of Ruin

The helicopter made what otherwise would have been a long walk a short, awkward ride. Mr. U dropped them off just outside of Sector 07. The place was still standing, abuzz with activity in fact, which told Pit and the other two boys that the machine invasion had failed. Pit smiled when he saw it, glad that at least the mission had been successful despite the losses suffered. Hopefully one of those losses could be reversed; Tora was already working on it with fervor. Though the mood in the area was generally high, when they reunited with the Seekers in some kind of command center the lack of Poppi put a damper on things.

Susie broke the silence, asking what happened. There were more awkward moments where none of Poppi's would-be rescue squad spoke a word. Pit blinked, realizing that Tora wasn't going to say anything. It wasn't his story to tell, and their lack of results weighed on him - but not as much as they did on Roxas, and Tora especially. So it fell to the angel to explain. He cleared his throat and rubbed the back of his head sheepishly before doing so.

"Um, well... We chased Poppi down. She was really serious about getting away, and she almost did, but we caught up to her! She wouldn't let us try to help, and..." he paused. At some point Zenkichi had slipped out of the room, but for the rest that remained he wanted to get them up to speed. He left out the sorrowful cries of his companions, the painful position they'd put Poppi in, the tears disguised by rain. He breathed and out in one deep sigh, his face taking on a resolute expression befitting his occupation as a soldier. "We lost her, in a lake. For now. We're going back to rescue her for real when Tora figures out a cure for her virus-thing."

They could all see the arm as proof that she was still out there waiting for them. Eventually they'd return to the lake and reunite. For now, Pit moved on from his brief explanation. His posture loosened up a little, and a smile ghosted his features.

"There was this giant clock-spidery thingy there with a bunch of those tiny flying machines, but we ditched them. Thanks for picking us up! And you guys managed to get rid of the rest of the robots right? That's awesome!"

Focus on the good news, and going forward. Pit did have to wonder about the other half of the machine army's attack though, all the way in the Detroit area. He crossed his arms and cocked his head. "Do we still have that walkie-talkie from Sakura? Can we check in on the others and what happened with the rest of the robots?"

Considering his "angel radio" had limitless range (when it was working), Pit had no frame of reference for how close together the walkie-talkies had to be to work. If the other Seekers, or Midgard citizens, needed some help they could go lend a hand. There was no telling when Tora would be finished with his work, so it wouldn't do to linger around the area if they were needed elsewhere.
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Double
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Double Hard-Boiled

Member Seen 9 hrs ago

Valley of Ruin -> Sector 07 Slums

@Lugubrious Tora, Giovanna | @Yankee Pit | @MULTI_MEDIA_MAN Zenkichi Hasegawa | @Archmage MC Susie | @Dark Cloud Partitio Yellowil

Word Count: 354
Level 6 Roxas: 0/60
Exp: 1
NEW EXP Balance--- 1/60

The Nobody had been dead quiet for the entire ride back to Midgar. Whether it was the sting of failure, or his own bad memories getting drudged up - Roxas was in no talking mood. When they eventually met back up with the other Seekers, it was evident that Tora was not in a talking mood either. He went straight to work on studying the arm he brought back with him. And Roxas couldn't blame him, he'd do the same thing in the Nopon's shoes. The Keybearer kept the hood of his black coat pulled up to cover most of his face. This was rapidly becoming his way of signaling to others that he wanted to be left alone.

He let Pit be the one to explain what happened. But after a few moments it became apparent that Roxas' gloved hands had clenched into trembling fists. And without a word or warning, he sprinted out of the command center - right past where Zenkichi was standing at the gate - and out into the Sector 07 Slums without so much as looking back. He needed some air... and some space. When he started getting tired from running he slowed to a walk. After that he just... started wandering the slums. He had no particular direction or destination in mind. He just walked around aimlessly, appearing to be exploring the sector. But he made no effort to talk to anyone. The kid was not in any mood for conversation right now.

Instead he occasionally muttered to himself. Sometimes about what happened out in the valley, and sometimes about his own missing friends. There was one name in particular he would say under his breath more than any of the others. Because it was her that the day's events had reminded him of the most. Xion... where are you?
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Lugubrious
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Lugubrious Player on the other side

Member Seen 1 hr ago

Midgar - Sector 7 Slums

Giovanna, Susie’s @Archmage MC, Zenkichi’s @Multi_Media_Man, Pit's @Yankee, Roxas' @Double Partitio’s @Dark Cloud

For the scrappers, militiamen, and citizens of Sector 07, this was a day worth celebrating. The Machines had come for them, the forces of DespoRHado seemingly hung them out to dry. Yet they triumphed, and without a single casualty to boot. People would probably be partying late into the night, already making the most of the peace they’d earned, for however long it lasted. With that peace came a bounty of new material, carved from the wrecks of the fallen by the salvage corps. Later on, they could motor on over to the battlefield outside Detroit as well, where plenty of loot no doubt awaited in the aftermath of that much larger-scale struggle. While Susie soon found that these Machine parts were almost unilaterally a lot lower quality than her own, they would suffice for the cityfolk down here just fine. For them, things were looking up.

For the Seekers, however, it was a hollow victory. They might not have known the two fallen members of the Rust Crew all that well, but the death of any brave soul fighting for the sake of others hurt. The loss of Poppi, however, was a different story. Tora’s partner had been there from the very beginning, preceding each and every member of this team by a long shot in their quest through Galeem’s dominion. She had been an indispensable ally, sometimes an indomitable protector, sometimes a breathtaking force of nature, but always a friendly, helpful face. Some of the others took the news hard, especially Zenkichi, who seemed rather close to despair for a moment. Of course, even compared to everyone else combined, Tora was crushed. The Nopon refused to speak to anyone, accepting no sympathy and offering no information about what happened to her. That duty fell to Pit , and he recounted the events of their pursuit as best he could for Susie and the others. Though they wove a grim tale, it ended on a positive note: Tora’s stated intentions to save Poppi. His plans to create a cure for the logic virus, find Poppi again, and fix her up offered a ray of hope, but the clouds that hung over the assembly of heroes were terribly dark and thick. To Tora, it felt like the weight of the world.

Before much longer, Giovanna decided to make an executive decision. Victory or no victory, this border-line boneyard was a miserable place out in the open, cold and dreary, full of foul, industrial smells and harsh noises. Everyone was tired, sore, dehydrated, and wounded to some extent, either in body or soul. She couldn’t forget about her soaked clothes either, and the combination of stares and shivering were beginning to get old. They all could use a warm place to rest and, should they be of age, a stiff drink. Something she’d seen just that morning seemed like just the ticket.

“Let’s blow this joint already,” she announced to everyone, raising her voice. “You treating us, Clarke? How about Seventh Heaven?”

The engineer waved. “Good choice. I’ve got work to do, though. Just tell the boss to put it on my tab.”

Giovanna nodded. “Sounds good. Let’s move, everyone.” As the troop started to get underway, bound through the rest of Scrap Boulevard into the slums proper to reach the bar, she noticed one member failing to move. “You…coming, Tora?”

He did not respond. One hundred percent of his focus lay on his computer as he struggled furiously with the profound intricacies of the Logic Virus. Giovanna sighed; she couldn’t just leave the poor guy here. “Can someone carry him?”

As they prepared to move on, Pit’s mention of the Walkie Talkie spurred her to finally do something she very much didn’t want to know. “Don’t know if it’ll reach,” she muttered. “But I’ve got a way to get in touch with them.” On the way to Seventh Heaven, with the team’s situation settled for better or worse, she made a second call. This time she contacted Goldlewis, and they exchanged a few minutes’ worth of terse conversation catching one another up. Her expression had not gotten happier by the end of it, and as the group neared the bar she steeled herself to spill the beans.

Once inside, the Seekers were greeted by a jovial atmosphere. People here were happy that Sector 07 had lived to fight another day, and as with any good celebration, alcohol was a hot commodity. Some of the defenders who helped hold the robots off at Breaker were here, and among them Giovanna spotted Tifa of all people behind the bar. The black-haired young lady looked every bit as stunning and composed as she did when the team spotted her that morning, as if she hadn’t just spent a solid half an hour crushing machines like beer cans with her bare fists in a fearsome display of martial arts prowess. She filled up the patrons’ beers and crafted their cocktails with well-honed expertise, serving with a smile, and when any eligible Seeker approached for a drink they received a warmer smile than most. While Seventh Heaven didn’t feature the biggest menu, it did offer some simple foods, so the team could indulge in some late lunch after their hard-fought battle as well.

Uninterested in anything and everything but his work, even food, Tora sat himself down in the corner by the jukebox. Once everyone else situated themselves, Giovanna relayed what she’d heard. “We’ve got some bad news,” she told them flatly. “Goldlewis and his team met Sakura and Raz in the tunnels outside Sector 05 during the Psych-OSF operation. However…” The secret agent lowered her voice a touch. “By the time they arrived, Peach had been transformed…into an Other. They didn’t realize at first and fought her for a while, but people from Seiran teleported her away. Then they ran into Karen Travers -the biggest name in the OSF- who said the Psych-OSF is to blame and Seiran might be able to cure Peach.” She paused for a moment to let that sink in. “Goldlewis also said Karen warned him not to tell any non-Seekers about Peach’s ‘metamorphosis’. So…y’know, take that how you will.” If Giovanna had been on the fence about getting a drink before, she sure wasn’t anymore. Losing Poppi hurt, but Peach was the de-facto leader of the entire operation. Key word ‘was’. After what happened, was she gone forever? Could the Seekers bounce back from this? Well, they didn’t really have a choice, she supposed. What a shitty day, she thought, waiting in grim silence for her drink.

Seiran Hideout

Level 4 Goldlewis (58/40)
Karin and Sakura’s @Zoey Boey, Blazermate’s @Archmage MC, Geralt @Multi_Media_Man, Benedict’s @Dark Cloud
Word Count: 1663

Once the sandwiches had been distributed, Goldlewis took a seat in the kitchen-slash-dining room. With the windows beside the table, the presence of warm light versus the other half of the former clinic’s harsh technological blue, and the bedroom just an open door away, it formed the hideout’s most liveable space. After all that running around through both the Stilt Village outside Seiran’s reservoir and the labyrinthine tunnels themselves, not to mention the constant fighting, the big man was plumb tuckered out. He seated himself at the table for a much-needed breather, although he didn’t take any sandwiches himself. While he’d be the first to insist that the others needed to eat to keep their strength up, he ironically didn’t feel very hungry at all himself. Tempting as it might be to go out and buy a case of beer for the team, the veteran needed his wits about him to tackle the matter at hand, so he settled for nursing a cup of coffee as the Seekers began to grapple with the day’s events.

Blazermate launched the discussion with a flurry of questions. She seemed pretty overloaded by what happened, and Goldlewis couldn’t blame her. That collapsed parking garage -or whatever it had been- had been mayhem from start to finish, even when it had just been a fight with a big Other. Sina’s revelation forced the Seekers to switch gears right in the middle of a dangerous battle, with almost a dozen competing voices piercing the monster’s smokescreen as it continued to attack. Then the thing that had been Peach was suddenly spirited away, by members of the OSF’s Seiran garrison no less, and the Septentrion First Class showed up to drop a cluster bomb of poignant information that, in the end, just led to more questions. It all happened so fast, and Goldlewis could barely keep it all in mind himself.

Benedict summed it up, though. This wasn’t just random criminal or terrorist activity, no way. Something big was afoot. Luka’s analogy back in the underground nexus had been spot-on: Goldlewis felt like a fisherman aboard a boat in stormy waters, stricken by fear at the vague sight of something massive stirring beneath the surface. And right now, that something looked like Psych-OSF, although maybe not quite in the way Benedict described. “It ain’t the OSF actin’ independently from the Administration,” he pointed out after a slurp of coffee, nodding at Geralt. “It’s Seiran, and Travers it seems like, goin’ against the rest of Psych-OSF. An internal division…” That realization invited all sorts of conjecture, and none of them good. If the Scarlet Guardians, arguably Midgar’s mightiest armed force, were splitting into factions, that could mean a whole lot of trouble, with a whole lot of crossfire for innocent people to get caught up in. Like Peach. “Travers seemed mighty pissed about what happened. Maybe it’s the OSF proper that’s behind this metamorphin’ business–and why Seiran’s goin’ rogue in the first place?”

The reality of what Karen called ‘metamorphosis’ was one that deeply unsettled everybody. As Geralt pointed out, the ability for any faction -much less agents of a corrupt Administration- to permanently turn people into Others out of the blue, meant that anyone could be a target. The only question was how they did it, but only Sakura, Sina, and maybe Raz could even begin to answer that. The possibilities didn’t end there, either. Geralt even offered an outlandish hypothesis that this metamorphosis might be the Origin of all others, and Goldlewis quickly stepped in to set him straight before that could inspire any terror.

“Unless they’re somehow flyin’ thousands of folks all the way up to the Extinction Belt, turnin’ ‘em, and throwin’ em out across the city on the regular without anyone noticin’, that can’t be it,” he declared, pretty confident in his reasoning. That said, when it came to explaining the difference, he drew a blank. Other biology was an utterly foreign field to him. “Ain’t got a finger-lickin’ clue,” he admitted to his chagrin. So far he’d assumed the Extinction Belt was the source of the Others in the same way the Astral Plane was the source of the Chimeras, but the eyewitnesses' testimonies -and even the word ‘metamorphosis’- implied a transformation. “But if Others come from the Extinction Belt, maybe ‘they’ reverse-engineered the process?”

Some guesses were made about the motivations behind both sides. Even as the former Secretary of Defense, Goldlewis couldn’t say. With Shinra at the helm, his hand-picked cabinet on the job, and Konoe in particular as the veteran’s replacement, this Administration was a far cry from Vernon’s. One thing Geralt mentioned did seem like a certainty, though: that Karen Travers planned to act. “That man’s the strongest doggone psychic in Midgar, and a candidate for strongest, period. If anyone can get some kind o’ ball rollin’, I’m guessin’ it’s him.” He looked over at Blazermate. “That’s who the masked man was, by the by.”

External conflicts weren’t the end of the Seekers’ problems, though. Geralt had done some reflection, catalyzed by the spirit-suppressing light of the Cleansers in the subway, and spoke about his experience. “That ain’t good,” Goldlewis remarked when he was done, aptly -if a little offhandedly- summarizing the situation. “I never messed with one o’ them spirits myself, but Giovanna did. She didn’t change all that much, but she changed, and I noticed. Both the differences, and the fact she didn’t notice herself.” If these were changes Geralt didn’t anticipate, Goldlewis could only hope that the team could get a better idea of what they were getting into with fusions going forward. “Y’are whatcha eat I guess, so I reckon y’all oughta be careful,” he added unhelpfully.

When Karin thanked him for the food, he nodded absently. “You’re welcome, miss.” While some of the others were devastated by what happened to Peach, Goldlewis was no stranger to loss, and only a little less than a stranger to the princess herself, so he viewed her loss through a more practical lens. One casualty wasn’t that bad in the greater scheme of things, but the loss of a leader was a huge blow, and as Karin pointed out, losing defusion was a big deal too. In fact, he couldn’t help but wonder if Peah’s metamorphosis wasn’t a coincidence. How this happened didn’t seem as important as why. Sakura wanted to know as much as anyone, but her plan to find out more from the perpetrator had one fatal error: a detail she overlooked.

“...You mean, this one?” Goldlewis placed the spirit of the sniper on the table. When Karen threw it at the Seekers’ proverbial feet, likely as a peace offering, the veteran had been the one to pick it up. “We ain’t gettin’ much outta her like this, sadly.” He tugged at his whiskers. “...Still, the fact she’s with Psych-OSF is a start. No way in hell she was actin’ alone. ‘Why Peach’--that’s the million-dollar question.” Hopefully, Karin was right, and as long as the Seekers kept pushing forward, they’d find the answers -and the Guardian- they sought.

Before the conversation went any further, Goldlewis heard a magical tone, and reached up to answer his communication glyph. “It’s Giovanna! Scuse me a li’l bit while I take this.” He pushed up from the table and strove powerfully past the kitchen table, farther into the hideout. The SOU members engaged in a quick, concise relay of facts, with no time spared on sentimentality. After a few minutes, Goldlewis returned. He stood by the table, arms crossed, and gave his report to the waiting, expectant team.

“Good news is that Gio, Zenkichi, and the rest of ‘em succeeded in drivin’ off a Machine invasion. Workin’ with the locals, they managed to keep Sector 07 safe.” He took a deep breath through his nose. “Bad news is…well, they had a casualty, too. Poppi got infected by some kinda Machine virus. Flew deep into the Valley of Ruin, fell into a lake or somethin’. Details ain’t exactly clear. Tora’s beside himself, of course. Gio says he won’t do anythin’ but try and crack the virus to find a cure. The others are fine, and they picked up a new feller named Partitio on the way, but they’re takin’ the loss pretty hard. Headin’ over here after a stop in at a local bar, Gio reckons.”

A few minutes after that, something else confronted the team. They heard a knock at the door, but when they answered it, nobody was there. Instead, they found only a nondescript, honey-yellow shipping envelope Given the day’s events, even a sight as mundane as that got Goldlewis’ heart racing. “Careful!” he warned. “Could be anythin’ in there. Let’s do this right.” With utmost caution, and Goldlewis standing by with his energy shield ready, the package was felt. Nothing seemed to be in it other than a handful of plastic cards, similar to credit cards, and possibly some cloth. Given the unlikelihood of some sort of weapon, Goldlewis went ahead and opened it. Inside he found six plastic press badges, already imprinted with pertinent information. “Shinra v. Armstrong Final Presidential Debate,” he read aloud, both eyebrows raised. “Date, today. Time, nine o’ clock. Location, the Dendenmille Showcase Theater, Sector 06.” He turned a badge over in his hands, noting the bar and QR codes. “Sounds like someone wants us to be there.”

He put it down on the table beside the others, then tried to gauge the thoughts of the team. “I had half a mind to go myself some way or another, owin’ to who’s gonna be there. This just makes it easy. It’s a risk, but one I think we oughta take.” If the others had opinions on that, he’d be happy to hear them.

“Still, it’s a good seven hours ‘til then, at least,” he mentioned at the tail end of the discussion. “Surely there’s somethin’ we can do in the meantime.”

Underground Roadway

Midna’s @DracoLunaris, Raz’s @Truthhurts22

Hearts raced and chests heaved as the soldiers’ black armored truck got underway, burning rubber as it raced to leave the scene of the collapse -not to mention the Other’s metamorphosis- in its dust. Even as today’s extractions went, this had been an especially dangerous one, with plenty of confused, angry combatants on hand, and that barely scratched the surface of its abnormalities, or the day’s horrors in general. The back of the truck buzzed with conversation, totally oblivious to the presence of any stowaways, as it rumbled down an underground highway in a vast subterranean space beneath Midgar.

“Mercy me, did you see the size of that thing!?” One of the soldiers exclaimed in a husky female voice. She reached up and removed her helmet, allowing a huge amount of thick hair to fall down all the way to her thighs, a sky blue to cotton candy pink gradient. Her skin was pale, almost gray, and narrow white pupils stood out against black sclera. “Biggest one so far today for certain, the poor soul. You going to be alright, Crenshaw?”

The tall-headed man who banished the Other with his Transport powers lay sprawled against the front wall, his head lolled back. “...No,” he gasped after a moment. “I’m…completely wiped out. Can’t do any more. The rest…are on their own..”

“Damn bastards, how the hell can they do this to anyone, let alone their own!” snarled one of the brawny men who’d helped grab the one called Crenshaw. His scarred lips were curled, and his fists shook with anger, as if he couldn’t wait to tear the ones responsible limb from limb. “At least we have our answer. If they’re so scared of a Seiran rebellion they’re willin’ to go to lengths like these to put us down, we’ve got no choice. We’ll give ‘em all-out war!” The others voiced their vehement agreement in reply.

Another man had removed his helmet, his long, well-kept, gray-streaked hair complimenting a trimmed, point beard. “We can’t do anything just yet,” he cautioned them. “Especially after today. We’re scattered and broken.” He gave a dry smile. “Got to hand it to them. They’re every bit as well-organized and ruthlessly efficient as we feared. A massive operation like that, called in and set up in what, two days? Didn’t even give us time to pack.”

“How much do you think, Angelo?” the pastel-haired woman asked quietly. “Our losses, I mean.”

The patrol captain sighed. “Aside from the subway system itself? It’s impossible to say.”

“It’s terrifying,” a small female soldier piped up in a squeaky voice, clearly shaken. “The whole thing. We came down here in the first place because the Others would keep people away, but once they realized, a ‘clean up’ was the perfect excuse.” She held her head with both hands. “First the scouts to metamorphose entire squads, filling the tunnels with even more Others. Then the main platoons for extermination. God…”

Angelo put a hand on her shoulder. “Easy, Bennie. We saved as many as we could.”

The big man from earlier closed his eyes, leaning against the truck’s wall. “We shouldn’t be fooling ourselves, what we’re doing isn’t saving them. Alive or dead, they’re still Others at the end of the day. That isn’t livin’. We’ll have to step up shipments to even keep ‘em lucid, for pete’s sake.”

“Then we’ll find a way. The least we can do is keep them as safe and comfortable as we can until someone finds a cure,” the first woman murmured sadly.

Stern-faced, Angelo crossed his arms. “We’ll get there, no matter what it takes. Instead of doom and gloom, we should be focusing on what we have, which is all thanks to Crenshaw here. If he didn’t defect too, we wouldn’t even have a glimmer of hope.”

“It’s nothing. After seeing for myself what Suoh was becoming, there was no choice.” Finally recovered somewhat, Crenshaw hauled himself up onto one of the benches, holding on tight as the truck went around a corner. “I just hope none of the poor initiates from last night got caught up in all this,” he sighed. “First day on the job, and faced with their own allies turned into monsters. What a nightmare.”

Bennie glanced at Angelo, her eyebrows squeezed together. “Are…is Bruno taking us to Supernatural Life, then?”

He shook his head. “No. There’s no telling what people the OSF has snooping around, and we can’t take even the slightest chance of accidentally compromising it to the enemy. We’re regrouping at an emergency rally point to take stock of the situation, then dispersing. They need to believe they squashed us.”

The long-haired woman smiled bleakly. “Good, since that’s exactly what happened. If half of the survivors haven’t deserted by tomorrow morning, I’ll be shocked.” The comment elicited a nervous titter from Bennie.

“Patience, Luminita,” Angelo said, trying to keep a stiff upper lip. “We still have Karen. Once he makes his move, we’ll have all the people we need. The truth will set them free.”

After a while longer, the truck came to a stop at the rally point at the edge of the huge hollow, a collapsed expressway fortified into a sort of outpost on the borders of the Sectors 05 and 06 undergrounds. There were a number of Seiran garrison members there, and more would trickle in over the course of the next few hours -many on foot- before heading upside through secret, roundabout passages, mostly to their homes. At one point, a trooper arrived with a half-conscious Booger Sabbat suspended in the air by Aerokinesis, claiming it was his brother. Crenshaw, who had stayed behind with Angelo to recuperate while the rest of the squad dispersed, set back his recovery with the Transport of another Other. Then he laid back down to rest again, even more dispirited than when he started.

Home of Tears - Terminal Cafe

Level 10 Nadia (198/100)
The Koopa Troop’s @DracoLunaris, Primrose and Therion’s @Yankee, Sectonia’s @Archmage MC, Jesse’s @Zoey Boey, Ganondorf’s @Double, Ichiban’s @Truthhurts22, Rubick's @Scarifar, Artorias' @Dark Cloud
Word Count: 1244

While at first the atmosphere of Terminal seemed more creepy than cozy with all the dead around, Nadia quickly got used to it. Though a little dim in here, it was warmly lit, with hanging lanterns and lightbulbs suspended inside urn-shaped baskets. The skeletons and zombies in here seemed to be friendly. For most of them, the coffee seemed to be an afterthought to the simple act of conversing; eager to chat, they talked with the eagerness of people eating their last meals, or perhaps saying their last words. All these living dead, the sort of monsters that a typical hero might kill without a second thought, just seemed like…ordinary people. Well, give or take a few unnatural eccentricities. Still, Nadia couldn’t help but be interested, both in the dead and whatever stories they might have to tell. Her eyes shone and her ears pointed every which way as she looked and listened in.

An undead blademaster recounted old war stories with a long-dead king, while nearby a a soft-spoken, purple-robed skelevangelist engaged a smart-mouthed skeleton in a friendly debate about the gods. Colorful Mariachis occupied most of the bar seats, downing espresso like tequila as they joked and laughed. A trio of zombie siblings, Rottytops, Abner, and Poe Cadaver, sat together on the second floor regaling anyone who’d listen with incredible tales about the lands they’d seen from their family caravan as long as they got coffees in return. Nadia spent a while listening to them, often smiling at the trio’s dynamic of energetic-but-mischievous, rough-but-responsible, and polite-but-weird. Two unusual zombies, the good-natured, huge-clawed Hsien-ko and the wise-cracking, guitar-strumming Lord Raptor, seemed to be on a date of some sort. Even Sargassos and Skuskets floated up by the lights around the second story, listening to the Cadavers or chattering amongst themselves.

The constant drone of the voices from all over melded together with the ever-present roar of rain outside, creating a shroud of peaceful white noise that Nadia found very relaxing. On top of that comfortable ambiance played the music of an old gramaphone, the soft, wistful, and hauntingly melodious voice of the singer, and her long, slow guitar notes, floating around and through the silent feral. Sitting there, with a warm coffee in her hand and the sounds of calm filling her, Nadia felt wonderfully at peace.

”We’re not dead
Suspended in a place of hush, not upset
Just puzzled by the sense of bemusement
It’s amusing losing all of our direction, now we’re lost…”

Nadia wasn’t sure how long she spent sitting there in Terminal, her tails gently swishing and curling behind her. She didn’t bother to count the seconds, and she did her best not to worry about P, or his powers, or the other Consuls, or the long road ahead. When the time came, her spirit would be shining bright, her smile fortified and made ever-present by moments like this. Her underwater siesta in Heaven’s Edge, had been one of these too, and the time she just stood there on a high-up boardwalk in Little Innsmouth, just feeling the heartbeat of humanity. Just the ambient feeling of life around her -even from the dead- filled her soul back up whenever anything got her down. This was what she was fighting for.

Of course, everything was better with company. At length Nadia found herself joined by a lady of stunning beauty, and at first the feral really didn’t recognize her. Only after a couple seconds did things click, enough commonalities gleaned from the woman’s appearance to hazard a guess. “Oh, Primrose!” she exclaimed with a slight laugh. “Eheh, I…I mean, you look good!” Having never seen the dancer before they made one another’s acquaintance in Twilight Town yesterday, she’d never gotten the chance to think of Primrose as anything but a brawny, primarily brunette street performer, clad in bright red, white, and gold. The sight of a high-society socialite, the pinnacle of elegance in a murky red dress and black feathers set against ginger-blonde hair, had therefore thrown her for a loop. “How’s it goin’? Since we last met, I think I became a cof-feline!” Primrose’s new changes brought Nadia’s mind back around to something she’d been considering earlier, and once the dancer received her coffee, she engaged her in conversation.

“I’m purr-etty sure I used to hate water,” she began, propping up her head with her arm. “Y’know, like a cat? But ever since fusin’ with the Oceanid and Massachusetts, I’ve been all about it. When I’m in the water, it’s like I’m in my element. Just feels natural.” She narrowed her eyes and furrowed her brows slightly. “But I know it ain’t. Makes me wonder, how much else about me isn’t…well, me? I can’t tell. Even havin’ three tails only felt weird for, like, a minute. There’s…uh, I don’t remember, but I’m pretty sure there’s a word for not feelin’ right in your own body. But it’s like this fusion smooths everythin’ over. Better than feelin’ weird about it, I guess, but we don’t wanna lose sight over who we are, right?” She shrugged, smiling. “Right meow though, the thing I’m mostly losin’ track of is everythin’ I can do. My powers are already super open-ended, and now I’ve got a couple different Strikers on top of ‘em, plus these new weapons, and don’t even get me started on the Copycats! Whenever I gotta coordinate somethin’ with ‘em it feels like my poor brain’s gonna combust.” After a hearty chuckle she took a swig of coffee. “Gonna need to sort my shit out if we’re goin’ after more bozos like P, right? Can’t be satisfied with the consul-ation prize”

Eventually the Koopa Troop happened to pass by. Between the music, the rain, and all the undead talking in here it was pretty loud, so rather than chase after them, Nadia took aim and launched one of her arms on a rocket of blood. It sailed past the Koopas and plopped down on the ground in front of them, then turned around to point behind them. When they looked in the indicated direction they found the feral waving them over, and motioning for one of them to collect her arm for her on their way over. “Hey, guys!” she hailed them. Though grateful for some one-on-one conversation with Primrose in the cafe’s tranquility, she didn’t mind more company. Hopefully Bowser wasn’t too big for this place, and the kids didn’t make a scene. “Some of you went explorin’ or somethin’ earlier, right? Well get this: my map got bigger!” She spread out an updated map of the Under on the table for everyone to look at. If her break was coming to an end, then it was time to plan out the team’s next steps with its self-proclaimed leader.
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Dark Cloud
Avatar of Dark Cloud

Dark Cloud 💀Vibin' beyond the Veil💀

Member Seen 14 days ago

Wordage: 460 words (+1 points)
Experience: 4/10 EXP
Location: Under (Royal Waterways) ➡ Habbo Hotel
Rubick's @Scarifar

It had been too long to remember when he last set foot in an established city, one that wasn't on the edge of calamity and rampant with the twisting taint of the Abyss. Respite was not something of a familiar concept to the man, for all Artorias knew was the duty he had been trained to perform as Gwyn's personal blade against those aligned with the Dark.

He was often far from the safety of civilization and for so long that he forgot what it was like, so as he followed his absent-minded guide the knight too silently viewed everything with vague curiosity. It wasn't surprising that passersby gave the towering figure of the knight a wide berth as he lumbered behind the Magus, he didn't look like the noble knight he was after all. His armor was ragged as the cloth he wore and his posture seemed to convey a wildness about him.

It wasn't long before arriving at their destination that his eager yet now seemingly sickly acquaintance turned and left him to his own devices in the weird establishment that he referred to as a hotel "Mmmm, may we meet again Magus." he bid his new ally farewell with but a nod as he watched Rubick make his way down to the lobby, once more he was alone left to do what're he needed to do. Artorias stood, looking quite out of place in the hotel entrance staring off into space with a sword as tall as an adult human and plated armor adorned over ragged dark cloth.

It seemed the hotel staff were quite busy dealing with their own issues, whatever that was it didn't seem to bother the knight to ask instead he somewhat crudely looked at the faux pas art hanging on the walls unceremoniously removing one from the wall and turning it in his hands before leaning it back against the wall with a 'Hmph' he wasn't very familiar with art though he once heard his liege employed a group of Painted Servants to guard a piece in Lordran.

He noted the plants were of an odd looking kind unlike many he had seen before, and the room had quite tacky looking furniture unfit for a place like Lordran if this were the city of light.

Artorias grew bored of staring at the walls and opted to step outside, rain pitter pattered against his armor once more. He stood there before the hotel watching the sky, once again the knight marveled at the twinkling lights above head yet also he listened as if he were waiting for something...If only he could hear the howl of his long lost friend, just to know that Sif was okay wherever the Great Wolf was.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Archmage MC
Avatar of Archmage MC

Archmage MC

Member Seen 2 hrs ago

Level 10 Sectonia (holding 4 level up) - (57/100)
Location: City of Tears
Word Count: Less than 750

Being one of the first up, Sectonia ran into Rubick who seemed to have been as affected as she and the others had been with Consul P's meddling. Having missed the fight, he voiced his greivences, with Sectonia only being able to dull his temper. "Apparently time was of the essence. There is a much more powerful Consul left if that eases your concerns. This one acted more like a rowdy evil child than an actual threat. Still, as you can no doubt tell, his power was very real." Sectonia said, gesturing at her cup of coffee and the bug bites all over Rubick. "Being able to modify time without repercussions was quite the power, even if he only played childish tricks with it.". Sectonia then went to explain to the grand magus what had transpired.

"Speaking of your detour, were you successful in making that staff you were looking forward to?" Sectonia asked Rubick, seeing as she had given him some poultry funds for said staff. She was interested to see why he was so excited to make it, well, before he had run ill of the side effects of Consul P fighting the other seekers that is. If it was as powerful as he let on, she would fund a staff of her own. She hadn't found anything better weapon wise than what her own kingdom had made yet. A point of pride or pity, Sectonia wasn't sure which.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by DracoLunaris
Avatar of DracoLunaris

DracoLunaris Multiverse tourist

Member Seen 3 hrs ago

The Koopa Troop

wordcount: 2,964 (+4)
Bowser: Level 12 EXP: ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (199/120)
Bowser Jr: Level 12 EXP: /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (89/120) 59
Kamek: Level 12 EXP: //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (72/120) 42
Rika: Level 7 EXP: ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (85/70)

Level 10 Sectonia (holding 4 level up) - (61/100)
Location: The Under - Home of Tears

A severed limb splatted to the ground in front of the troop, causing all to start like a cat presented with a cucumber before they realized who it belonged to. Well. except Rika who crouched down, picked up and called out ”I think someone dropped this” with nary a thought of how weird this was behind her eyes.

The rest of them did actually get the message and once they had caught Rika up, they headed inside. They traded a brief hello with the pair, and then popped over to the counter to place some orders from the two baristas, Maddy and Clemence.

The menu consisted of fresh coffee, tinned coffee, milk, expresso, and so forth as expected, as well as cookies, muffins, scones, and, for some reason, Pear Fusilli. Even more out of place than the pasta however, was Clemence’s side hustle of selling blank tapes and rewinds for said tapes.

Upon seeing those Jr inevitably asked ”Hey, so, what’s the deal with the ‘tape’ things?”, the young prince was not even familiar with the antiquated audio storage format.

"Oh, zese?" Clémence seemed to perk up when the young prince voiced an interest in a very particular subset of her inventory. Though she spoke with a notable French accent, Junior could parse her speech pretty well thanks the time he'd spent around the Seaplane Tender, Bella, back in the Deep Blue Seaside. "Zey are cassette tapes. Nothing strange about zem, how zey work or what zey're made of, but with a cassette player and microphone you can use zem to record any monsters you meet out in ze field, and make zeir power your own." She held up two different tapes, one an ordinary dull black, the other metallic and shiny. "Two hundred for ze normal ones, seven hundred fifty for ze chrome, which are much better at recording. If you're new and you wish to know more about cassette beasts..." After looking around, Clémence zeroed in on one customer in particular. "You should ask him," she said, nodding at the Skelevangelist.

Sectonia wasn’t interested in the tapes as she figured there was a catch with them. Instead only grabbing another coffee to stay awake. Something more flavorful than what she had at the hotel, which was very, very basic and bland.

Jr, never one to turn down the possibility of acquiring new toys, was very much the opposite, and eagerly followed up on that suggestion, proceeding to go bother the indicated gentleman with little regard as to if that might be rude or not.

”Hey you, the lady at the counter said you knew stuff about these tape things. Lay it on me. I wanna know all the details. Like, can it be any monster? Or only specific ones? And are they any good if so? Or would this just let me turn into stuff less awesome than I already am” the little monster climbed up onto a chair opposite the man to ask.

At the mention of tapes, the other undead at the table Junior joined raised a collective eyebrow, and the Skelevangelist near-instantly went into panic mode. "Wuh...he-hey, hold your horses just a, just a hot second there, little guy." Leaning on the table in an exaggerated casual manner, he turned toward Skelly and the others. "He's, uh, heheh, obviously just a little confused. Mistaking me for someone else, I bet!" He floated up from his chair and patted Junior on the head, subtly tugging on his arm with the other hand. "Give me a second, will you, fellas? I'll get him sorted out, be back in a minute!" Then, in a barely-audible whisper, he hissed in Junior's ear. "Can't tell you here. Follow me?"

He led the way to a more secluded nook of the Terminal, then wiped the back of a bony hand across his skull. "Uh, sorry about that, kid. Look, I'll tell you whatever you want to know, as long as you don't go blabbing to anyone I know about cassette tapes or turning into monsters, okay? Deal?

”Uhhh, deal? But you might wanna tell the lady selling them that as well then?” Jr replied, very confused, but happy enough to roll with it. If it was meant to be a secret, then he assumed it had to be good. As was Kamek, who was observing this whole thing via a wisps he had sent to keep an eye on the boy when he started to wander off.

The Skelevangelist shifted uncomfortably. "Well, the tapes aren't very popular, so most people don't ask, and she doesn't tell. In a city that's ninety-nine percent monster, tapes that let you turn into one don't have much use. Except...well." Suddenly the Skelevangelist's body dissolved into what looked like TV static, fluctuating and reforming into the shape of a man. He looked to be in his early twenties, unkept and unshaven, rail-thin and gaunt. He held a cassette player, and as Junior watched he lowered his headphones down to hang around his neck. "I'm not really a Skelevangelist," he admitted, his eyes melancholic. "I just wanted to fit in, you know? I'm not the only person 'blending in', either. Humans d-don't...have a great reputation around here. Monsters don't tr-trust us. If my monster friends found out I was some loser human and not a cool skeleton, they wouldn't want anything to do with me! So please, k-k-keep it to yourself! It's my social life on the line!"

He tugged at his beard uncomfortably. "A-anyway, you wanted to know about the tapes? Well, they can record lots of different m-monsters. If you've got a player, put the tape in, point the microphone at 'em, a-and press this." He indicated a button on his player with a circle. "It's up to chance, but if a friend of yours beats on 'em it'll go up, and if you get hit it'll go down. When transformed, you can't do anything you did before, but you can use everything the monster c-can, and it's HP gets stacked on top of yours. The tape'll...uh, well, break if it takes too much damage, and you'll turn back, but you can re-re-re-wind the tapes to fix 'em up." He showed Junior the tape in his possession, emblazoned with a drawing of a skeleton's head. Then he slipped it back into the player and closed it, his finger hovering over the play button. "Uh...I guess it wouldn't hurt to mention, there's...one other thing the player can do, b-but most people can't use it. If two people have players and their hearts act as one, they might be able to fuse their monster forms together. A fusion's got the stats and p-p-powers of both combined, so they're crazy strong, but you gotta stock up power first." He carefully put his headphones back on. "Uh, b-but I don't know anyone who can, so don't get your hopes up. T-that's everything I know..." He pressed play on his device, and in a shimmer of static he turned back into a Skelevangelist. Instantly he seemed more confident, animated, and personable, with no trace of his stutter. "So keep it on the down low, will ya kid?"

”Yeah, yeah, sure, don’t worry about it” Jr replied, still not really getting the whole not wanting to be seen as human thing. Kamek meanwhile wondered if those who slither in the dark’s double lives had had any influence on the ‘humans being seen as mistrustful’ thing the man had talked about.

The boy left him after that, (or rather he left, then went back and said ”and, uh, thanks” after some rather blatant prompting from Kamek) giving the tapes thing a mull over as he and headed back to rejoin the others.

After the rest of the party had placed their orders, they had returned and took a seat with the two ladies, the king shrinking himself down to fit properly, while Rika had been busy drinking in all the neat sights to cause much of a ruckus.

Then getting to talk about her and Jr’s little adventure distracted her more than enough to prevent any shenanigans.

”Mmm, hmm. There’s this place called the crumbling caverns that’s made entirely of cheese!” Rika replied to the question, before going on an extended ramble about their experiences ”and there were these rat and mouse people who mined it, and we got a job to run some of it back, and got attacked by more rat people and some like, living cheese or something while doing that. They had jetpack knights armed with forks, it was silly. Anyway we killed some of them and they killed some guy who was with us. Then they ran off and we delivered the cheese but got paid basically nothing and learned that jobs are bad and you should just kill tings and crush spirits or steal to get money”

”Ah, no, maybe you should not have learned that specific lesson from that Rika … or rather young mistress” Kamek replied, realizing that he now functionally had two royal scoins he needed to help raise right.

”Young mistress? Oh, like how you call jr young master... Why do you do that anyway?” Riak asked, entirely skipping over the advisor’s attempt to adjust her learning, to which Kamek explained that, as daughter of a king, she was now royalty

”Soooo, does that make me a princess?” Rika asked, and then replying ”neat” once she got confirmation of that being the case. After all ”I mean I already have one in me anyway, but I didn’t know if that counted or not? Guess it doesn’t matter either way now”

While the matter of his lineage was clarified Bowser was pouring over the map and had gotten himself confused, pointing at the tall blurred out right section and saying ”Hey, shouldn't that bit to the side be filled in? We went down it right? Kamek check our map”

”Sire I … yes here” the mage unfurled his own (miniaturized) map, which matched Nadia’s entirely, as instructed, before correcting his king’s confusion

”I believe this up here” he tapped the ash lake ”Was where we came down. Most of our journey seems to have been pipe, at least compared to those who went through the ah, ‘womb’ structure”

”Oh. Right. I was just checking you know that” he insisted.

”Hm… Which area had that ‘clock’ you were talking about? Perhaps if its easy to get to, I could inspect that first. That pig boy did mention something about stealing lifelight, perhaps that clock is related?” Sectonia mused as she looked over the map. Really this was a guise to her agenda to see if she could make a regent out of the previous king here, but learning about the consul’s powers or potential about them could be useful.

”Oh? Ah yes, the clock. That would be here” Kamek pointed at the ash lake ”and can be accessed via a warp pipe found in the water under Gallo tower’s bridge. Should take you all the way back up”

”As for what the clock is, and what life light is, well, it appears that the red glow in the galeeming’s eyes suffuses their body, and keeps them alive somehow. Or maybe more accurately a lack of it kills them” Kamek explained what he remembered ”either way, the clock fills with lifelight whether when things die nearby, or when lifelight is put into it willingly, which is what Asgore does. Then people like those in the city take lifelight out to live.”

”Which I guess makes them sound like a good thing, but didn’t Asgore also think it would be good if they were destroyed?” Rika asked, having not quite gotten that part

”I. Yes. I suppose”

”I got real big and punched it and it still didn’t break, so they are straight up indestructible” Bowser added with a matter of fact rather than egotistical tone, despite egotistical being exactly what the statement was.

”Magic must often defeat magic. Nothing is indestructible.” Sectonia said flatly.

”Right. Well. One flaw I do know about the clocks is that the Conuls can take flame out of them, to either heal or … hmmm. You know, I do not recall, are they Galeeming or not?” he asked, which got some shrugs from the others in the troop.

”Considering upon his death he leaked red motes of energy instead of a spirit, perhaps this clock is meant to keep the consuls alive and all powerful, instead of what this ‘Asgore’ thinks it does? I wouldn’t know without seeing it though.” Sectonia said.

”Well, whatever the case, the clocks require conflict to keep the people alive, but breaking them would free people from that need. Perhaps from galeem’s influence?” he theorized, but he really did not know for sure (it was a rather academic question anyway, as breaking the clocks was currently out of the question) so he simply shrugged and left it there.

As they were mulling over the implications of the map, and considering where to go, the orders they had made on their way in arrived.

Decaf coffees for the two older koopas, warm milk for the young ones (which professed to calcium enriched for extra healthy bones on the menu) along with a small pile of cookies and muffins which Kamek, who had worried it might spoil their appetite for dinner, had been outvoted 3 to one on getting. So he’d gotten himself some pasta. Sectonia had gotten a fancy late.

That paused any real potential for strategizing, leaving plenty of time for others to catch up.

Once they did, and got their own orders if they wanted them, and Jr got back to nab his drink before it got cold and talk a bit about how neat the whole monster transformation and fusion thing sounded, the strategizing could begin.

”So, as the young mistress, Rika, has mentioned, she and the young master have had little trip over here” Kamek indicated to a section of the map to the right ”and found it not particularly dangerous, comparably”

”Yup, we went pretty far and only got attacked one whole time!” Rika agreed , before outlining what kind of progress could be made ”There was some kind of factory further on I think, but we didn’t get much of a good look. Also this town fairly close to that which would make an ok staging or rallying point for before we go hit that place”

”Which leads into my suggestion that we head out tomorrow rather than try and squeeze an expedition into the unknown into the evening. A proper night’s rest will do us much better than the cat naps we’ve most likely had. Plus it lets us stock up on and offload equipment at a more leisurely pace” Kamek popped his still not quite empty cup down to suggest ”We hardly want to be hauling P’s treasures with us when we set out, I shouldn’t think”

”Indeed. Some beauty rest for everyone would be best. As for what areas to go to, it really doesn’t matter in the end. It seems we will need to go get more mask fragments from all over the Under. ” Sectonia said. ”Speaking of all that loot. How should we go about dealing with that… Hm… There is quite a lot of it to move.”

”Best we sell it off before we leave.The sooner the better, so we can put those funds to work. Perhaps after this little meeting is over, you would be able to give us a touch of your time to aid in that endeavor?” the royal advisor asked the queen.

”The faster it gets done, the faster we can all get some proper sleep.” Sectonia said. ”I still need to go see this ‘Asgore’ to see if he can take the reagent position here for me as well. The citizens here would love their former king to return if he was ousted by that… pig.” Sectonia then thought about how to go about that, and had the thought of one of the buildings she had passed prior. ”There is that pawn shop, and the auction house not that far away as well that could expedite this perhaps.” She also thought a bit before saying. ”And if this isn’t that valuable, as none of it seemed to be magical, just giving it back could pay dividends more than gold should we come back perhaps. hm…”

”I do not believe he will be interested. He has charged himself with refilling the clock all on his own, which is not something he can do at the same time as ruling a city,” Kamek explained, skipping over the self esteem issues the former king had, before pivoting back to the loot issue and pointing out that ”Well, a fair amount of it is art and such things, which I would think would sell quite well at an auction house, would it not?”

”Perhaps. Art is a weird one to sell. It could be valuable or not at all. I suppose we will have to see. The toys however I don’t think will sell well at all, best to return those.” Sectonia said, giving her opinion on that.

”Awww, but I just got to play with those game console things for the first time” Rika bemoaned, and Jr too was a little miffed, but both were easily placated by promises of going shopping for their own toys, and so there was no further dissent on the part of the troop when it came to giving the children back their things.

Having said their parts, the turtles, bee and ship leaned back in their chairs and opened the floor to the other’s points of view on what they should be doing.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by TruthHurts22
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Lv. 2

Location: The Under - City of Tears, Terminal Cafe
(@DracoLunaris / @Archmage MC)

"Yo, can I ask, just what the hell's going on?"

Revealing himself on the fringe of Nadia's, Sectonia's, and the Troop's discussion, Ichiban leaned over the table, a cup of hot tea in hand, though he was quick to stash it inside his jacket, however that worked out for him. Whether he followed them to this point or merely happened to be in the same location due to the comedic laws of the universe, who knew.

"I'm pretty sure when I woke up this morning the world wasn't full of freaky skeletons or pig monsters." He gestured vaguely at the undead-filled cafe. "Now though, it's all here. Feel like I just got over a head cold and everything's like, clear in my head. And you guys seem to know a lot about what's goin' on."

Ichiban pulled up a chair from an empty table, slotting into place between Nadia and Bowser. "Know I'm just some guy you all met today and you probably don't need to explain anything to me, but Iiiii'm... kinda really freakin' out right now."

To help make his point, Ichiban jerked a finger up at Bowser. "Like, this guy's Bowser! The real one! An' the P kid we just beat up, I'm like, seventy percent sure he was from a game too. We're in a world full'a video game characters!!" Despite the nervous breakdown he was bordering on, Ichiban dug around his pocket for a mini muffin. He took a bite, opened his mouth to continue talking, stopped, then spat it out onto the floor. "Uggghh, right, poisoned." He looked at the muffin with disappointment and disdain before stowing it away again.

"I'd just, I'd really like to know what kinda thing I'm dealin' with here. 'cuz it obvious I ain't home in Japan."
296 Words
+1 EXP
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by MULTI_MEDIA_MAN


Member Seen 3 days ago

Geralt of Rivia

Midgar- Seiran Hideout

Lvl 9 (216/90) -> (217/90)

Word Count: 670 words

Geralt frowned a bit when Sakura mentioned possibly de-fusing with the Orphan's Spirit, but given that she didn't press the matter, he didn't say anything. As unpleasant as he might be, he couldn't guarantee that others wouldn't have worse results from fusing with that thing. He would have to meditate more often and try to work out his own problem with being overprotective of his allies (And more specifically, Sakura in particular) to help prevent such a loss of control from happening again.

Leave it to Sakura to want to avoid the political nonsense that was going on in this city. He knew exactly how she felt, and wanted the exact same thing, though he knew that they'd have to engage in some manner or another, especially if they wanted results. With the internal division going on not only between different groups but within the organizations (at least one) protecting Midgar, they'd have their work cut out for them. Not only would allying with any group directly likely buy them more enemies, but if they made the wrong choice, they'd probably be backstabbed themselves when the time came.

When Goldlewis cut off his musings on whether all of the Others were forcefully transformed, he nodded. "I'll defer to your expertise. The sheer size of this city is...so unlike anything I've ever seen. The logistics of equipping and feeding an army have won wars, a place like this? I'm shocked it has enough food to keep itself running."

He also concurred with the man's caution regarding fusing with Spirits. "Yes, it's...hmm. Difficult to describe, and quite unpredictable. We has a device that could localize fusions to a specific part of the body, and thus mitigate some of the dangers of Fusion, but it was brought with another team to an alternate location. Strategically speaking, having Peach in one team and the machine on another allows us to be more flexible when it comes to the Spirits we fuse with and keeps any one group from missing out, but it's still impossible to know the results before doing it." Drumming his clawed fingers gently on the table, he shook his head.

"What's worse is that the Spirits of the Guardians, the immensely powerful beings which we are hunting, cannot be destroyed or made into a Striker. Somebody must Fuse with them, or the Guardian will revive within 24 hours. I made the decision to fuse with the Guardian of the Deep Blue, though it wasn't done lightly."

They discussed the events they'd just experienced a bit more, with the question of why Peach specifically having been attacked being the most pressing thing on everybody's minds, when Goldlewis received a call from Giovanna. When he explained what happened to Poppi, Geralt's blood froze in his veins, and he shook his head sadly. There was a sliver of hope in that Tora seemed to believe there was hope to help Poppi be free of the Machine Virus, however a virus infected a machine, but they'd fared similarly to this group then- a strategic victory with some tactical losses. Ones that, hopefully, would not remain permanent.

As the others discussed the significance of these events, Geralt took a few minutes to meditate, trying to clear his mind. It proved to be different than normal, with his thoughts more chaotic than normal. Hmm. Yes, that was certainly a problem. Though it was interrupted by another matter, albeit one which was not immediately pressing, thank goodness.

After a cautious opening of the mysterious package that was delivered to their not-so-secret hideout (clearly, given that they'd been found), they were met with half a dozen press passes for the Presidential Debate. Huh.

That just left what they were going to do until then. Geralt, absent any idea of what to do in a city like this that he'd be willing to speak about in present company, shrugged and got himself another glass of water. What he wouldn't do for his Gwent cards right about now.
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Dark Cloud
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Dark Cloud 💀Vibin' beyond the Veil💀

Member Seen 14 days ago

Wordage: 518 words (+1 points)
Experience: 4/30 EXP
Location: Sector 7 Slums ➡ Seventh Heaven
Giovanna's @Lugubrious, Zenkichi's @Multi_Media_Man, Pit’s @Yankee and Susie's @Archmage MC

Despite the whole of Sector 7 being practically abuzz with merriment, folk out in the streets celebrating and enjoying the peace that was earned.

Partitio couldn't help shake the feeling that even though everybody put their blood, sweat and tears into defending these folks lives that they'd payed for it in the end. The merchant hadn't really known Tora for all that long, as he stood there Partitio scratched the back of his neck.

'Somewhere out there..I know there's folks sufferin' just as much as we did, or worse.' those were his words, something he said to his old man before he left home. But something had begun to tell him he was far-far from home but it didn't make what he was beginning to recall any less true 'I wanna do what I can for em'. Use my talents to make the world a better place.' being a merchant was more than making a bundle of leaves, it was the reason why that matters.

Partitio walked along removing his hat, he stared at it for a moment before placing it back on his head. He remembered everything, why he left home, about how Roque betrayed him and the people living in his town, about Griff and every day he lived scraping by on nothing.

The merchant trailed behind the Seekers, and entered the Seventh Heaven wiping something from his cheek. Met by cheers and smiles, the Seekers looked quite dour in comparison but Partitio was a different kind of man he knew the right words could snap them frowns upside down. So once Giovanna was finished her piece, the merchant who had taken a seat at the bar turning on the stool to listen well to her while he swigged a bottle of draft beer.

"Now ya'll listen, I don't know who all of ya are nor who this Peach or Goldlewis is! Don't even know where the heck this even is but I do know one thing," Partitio took a swig of the beer he was served setting it down with a hearty thunk to turn to the lot gathered around inside the tavern "Your more than just a bunch of helpful strangers no ya'll are bona-fide heroes." they certainly were, they sacrificed a lot to just fight back a horde of robots "If you can fight a whole dang army all by yourselves well then you can do anything, if Poppi were here she'd have wanted us to be happy that her life meant somethin' worth celebrating cause she fought with people who were good. I cast my lot with you, I saw there was something about you folk and I knew you could pull through for this dang town." he pulled out a coin from his pocket, flipping it with his thumb and catching it.

"I wouldn't trade nothing for the folks I met all this way and I certainly won't forget em', and that's something I'll drink to. To Poppi." the merchant raised up the bottle and drank it in cheers even if nobody else would join him he felt like honoring the little Nopon's friend was appropriate.

Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Yankee
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Yankee God of Typos

Member Online

Level: 8 - Total EXP: 168/80 ------ Level: 6 - Total EXP: 108/60
𝙱𝙿 ●●●● ---------------------------- 𝙱𝙿 ●●●●
Word Count: 1398 (+3 exp)
Location: The Under - City of Tears

At the cafe Primrose had her mug of coffee pressed to her lips, pleasantly pleased at the compliment Ms. Fortune had paid her. I do look good, don't I? she thought to herself as she sipped her drink. It was more on the bitter side, as she liked it. As they sat together Nadia brought up her thoughts on her own fusions, and Primrose considered them. She let the other woman talk about not losing sight of who they were, seriously thinking on the topic before she set her mug down and leaned in with her arms folded on the table in front of her. "I've thought about that, but really isn't this who we are, now?"

Her eyes dropped briefly to her drink, observing her murky reflection on the surface of what remained.

"The sum of our parts. Whether something we chose, like fusing, or something we didn't. I remember what I looked like before very well; I was shorter, smaller. Definitely didn't have these," she sat back and curled an arm to show off the muscle there, less pronounced than before she'd fused with Cornelia but still apparent that she had some strength. Inspecting herself was something she'd always had to do in Sunshade. Making sure she looked presentable, and desirable, had been a part of her job. "But even after changing I still feel like I'm me. Maybe it is the smoothing over as you put it, but..."

Primrose smiled. The nature of spirits, fusing, everything, was still mostly a mystery - maybe it was possible to lose yourself in them. But for now, it was just another change in her life. "Well, at risk of sounding like Professor Albright, who knows what their true self is anyway? Everyone changes as time goes on, and at least this kind of change was our decision, no?"

She didn't know Ms. Fortune's background, but she couldn't imagine that the Feral was looking for a philosophical discussion, and since Primrose wasn't either they let the topic pass into the actual power gained from such fusions. Nadia's earlier joke about coffee hadn't gotten a reaction from the dancer, but her second pun earned an amused giggle. "Right. Though I think that goes for a lot of us too."

It was certainly a feat juggling everything she could do now, but it only meant that she was more powerful and had more options. A good thing, in her opinion.

It was at that point that the Koopa Family got their orders and came to sit down with them, Queen Sectonia appearing shortly afterward. Primrose scooted over to give them all some space as chairs were pulled over. If many more joined them they'd have to drag another table into the mix too. Ms. Fortune laid her map on the table for everyone to see, showing the areas the group had been to. Primrose hadn't expected a magical map, that was incredibly useful. That map maker is undercharging, she thought, recalling how bare bones she'd found it earlier. Now it was a little more filled out. Her eyes trailed over it, tracing the vague path she and the Koopa Family had taken to arrive in the City of Tears. The 'Bough' must have been that massive tree they'd made their way down. Was it part of the Colorless Wood they'd found themselves in before? It was hard to pinpoint on the map.

"I wonder if little Barnabee has any insight on these areas," she mused aloud. He was a native to the Under, and his queendom was somewhere down here. "He mentioned needing help and was willing to wait until we all reunited. Now that we have, perhaps we should head that way next."

Rika explained the Crumble Cavern section of the map, ending with a bold statement about making money that saw Primrose covering her mouth with her palm to hide her deep amusement over it (and Kamek's concern about it too). A familiar feeling washed over Primrose as the group poured over the map and talked. She'd done this many times in Orsterra in inns and taverns. She could practically picture Tressa standing across from her, scoffing at Rika's words and trying to get her back on the path of an honest day's work or the professor marveling over a self-updating map and soaking in Kamek's explanations about the Koopa culture's royal hierarchy. Despite being filled with undead, the cafe's atmosphere made the scene a cozy one.

She finished her coffee while the Flame Clock was being discussed. It was after that conversation and before the start of the next that Therion found his way to the cafe, his business in the city done. His errand had been relatively quick, just picking up his commission order from Bis the smithy after some adjustments to make sure everything fit. He'd never had anything tailored to him before in his life, so needless to say it had taken a bit of time even after getting over the awkwardness of standing around in his beast form while the felynes strapped everything into place. When he'd shifted back into human form, the armor and weapon he'd paid for disappeared - but remained in place when he tested changing into a feline again. It worked out perfectly. He'd been heading back toward the Habbo Hotel when he came upon the Seekers squeezing into the cafe. As he'd thought, it was really hard to miss them.

The thief stayed under his umbrella until he was already halfway into the establishment, trying to stay as dry as possible. When he quietly joined the Seekers, slotted somewhere under the alien queen's wing, he studied the map laid out on the table.

"We know where we're heading yet?" he asked. Primrose shook her head.

"Not yet."

"Hm." He didn't really care which way they went, so long as they made progress. He was munching on a cookie that had mysteriously appeared in his hand, most likely pilfered from the plate already on the table, when something on the map caught his eye.

"This," he said, pointing to the MTT Resort. "I've seen it before. When we were riding on the cat trains, Jesse, Raz and I came to the Under. It took us to a different area than Dirtmouth and this resort was there."

Weird that it was connected to the Royal Waterways. Then again, there were paths he hadn't taken when he was down there. One of them must have led out to the area around the resort. Therion glanced at the other Seekers gathered. "The most dangerous things I've seen in the Waterways under the city are in one giant garbage dump, if we avoid that it might not be difficult to get to this resort. And the train station should be nearby. If you want to waste more time sleeping, you could stay the night there. Who knows, maybe if a bunch of rich people are staying there you could get rid of some of the Consul's stuff too."

Since it wasn't like sunlight would be a thing down here, Therion didn't see the reason in waiting until tomorrow. But if the rest of them wanted to spend another night in the city there wasn't much he could do about it besides try and find something to occupy his time. He'd said his piece.

Primrose didn't voice her support for any options, besides the initial reminder that they owed Barnabee a favor. She was about to point out that there were still several Seekers missing from the conversation that they should probably round up and at least let know what was going on when one such person appeared. The newly freed Ichiban wanted an explanation, but Primrose only gave him a look of pity.

"It's a lot. And doesn't even make much sense with context," Therion answered unhelpfully.

"What do you mean, 'from a game'?" Primrose asked Ichiban, wondering if he had some insight to share. Was he from the same world as the Consul? But he seemed to know Bowser as well, and the king hadn't mentioned anything like that. Though, it was more likely that the man was mistakenly attributing something from his own world to this patchwork one.

After his answer she blinked and looked at the others. "Would anyone like to do the honors of explaining things to him?"

They really needed a brochure.
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by DracoLunaris
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DracoLunaris Multiverse tourist

Member Seen 3 hrs ago

wordcount: 1,508 (+3)
Midna: level 9 EXP: //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (98/100)
Location: Seiran Underground
Warp Charges: 3 (-1)

(co-staring @TruthHurts22's Raz)

As the truck rumbled away the two stowaways strained to listen in to the conversation going on between the people who had stolen away the transformed Princess Peach, a task made slightly hard by the rumbling of the machine itself. Midna certainly had a better time of it, able to stow away inside the truck in its occupant’s shadows (although she had to spend the entire journey biting her own hand to avoid offering comment on the things being said), while unbeknownst to her (and vice versa) Raz clung to the underside of the vehicle, concrete wheezing by mere inches below.

Still, be they in or under, both spies got some very, very juicy details from the free flowing talk between what turned out to be some kind of revolutionary group seeking to cut out the rot infesting Suoh, which Midna would have found heartening, had she not found out about them right when they had just felt the boot of the system crush down on them, hard.

Though Midna had an easy time eavesdropping, it was unsurprisingly much harder to pick up quiet conversation inside of an armored truck when you’re clinging to its underside. Luckily, Raz was able to reach out with his ~psychic senses~ to remotely pick up what was being said. ”Metamorphose? Extermination..?” A bad feeling crept into Raz’s stomach, not helped by the precarious spot he chose to hide. It was a testament of his will that he didn’t puke right over the road. This was definitely juicy intel, though what it exactly meant, and if he could entirely trust Crenshaw and the others, he wasn’t too confident.

Midna, too, wasn’t so sure if she could really trust these people. After the ‘resistance’ of al-mamon turned out to be a front for some nefarious mind control plot, she was not going to jump into this organization's arms without more info, even if she managed to remain hopeful that said info would turn out possitive. The flow of that came to an end, however, as they approached some kind of rally point for the group.

The vehicle finally stopped, and the passengers started to move out. Minda, naturally, went to follow via slipping into one of their shadows. When she did, however, her low to the ground position, or rather functionality in it, let her see what the people she was tailing could not. Namely that she was not the only one who had stowed away.

She immediately switched priorities, and shadows, to link up with Raz. She had names of people in the organization. She had the name of what was probably their base, and most likely where Peach had been sent. It was enough. Making sure the boy did not get caught was more important.

Raz didn’t share that priority, of course. He thought he was undertaking a solo stealth operation to suss out a possible coup or alternate sect of rebellion within the Psych-OSF. In other words, the exact thing he spent most of his life dreaming of. He was a little held up from continuing from not having thought ahead, though. ”Okaaaay, now how do I get out of here? Do I go invisible again and jump into some kind of storage crate? Do they have any around here? It’s hard to see…”

”I wouldn’t recommend it, who knows where you’d end up delivered too” a voice coming from the ground interjected into his mutterings to himself

”I guess so, but it’s better than staying- huh?!” Raz, in surprise, slipped off the various car bits he was clinging to, falling a good three inches onto the hard concrete. ”Who’s there?” he snapped, trying his best to whisper.

”A whoops. Sorry about that scare. Its Midna” the princess of twilight clarified from the dark, only to curse wordlessly at the sound of footsteps approaching. One of the psychics seemed to overhear the thump of him impacting the ground, though their pace seemed to indicate curiosity rather than urgent concern.

Flipping around onto his stomach, Raz peered out around them at the approaching footsteps. ”You came too? Whaddya think, should we take these guys on? Get them to hand Peach back over to us?”

”They might be able to help so let’s not-” Midna started, before pivoting the conversation to dealing with the current problem instead of arguing strategy ”-let’s not stick around here to get found out. Can you invisible yourself and get to that tunnel to the right? I’ll meet you there and we can plan”

”What? But we’re right here, we can’t just leave!” Raz tried to convince Midna, though really he was starting to get cold feet himself. Wouldn’t be a very good stealth operation if he got caught on step one, after all. ”Fine, yes, I’ll meet you there,” he muttered, a little peeved at his moment of coolness needing to cut short. A quick pop out of the visible spectrum later, Raz rolled out from under the truck, jumping back onto his feet to make a break for the tunnel. He had to be quick since his un-amplified Invisibility wouldn’t last long.

Midna, after taking a moment to be impressed by the invisibility trick, and make sure that the psychic coming to investigate did not think anything was suspicious (they did not) simply hopped through a few shadows, and into the tunnel. Her eyes, adapted to the dark, had spied a runed van up the tunnel and popped out behind it to wait for Raz to show.

Soon enough the goggle-headed kid came up around the van, nearly jumping out of his boots in surprise. ”Gyah! Jeez, you’re really good at sneaking up on people…”

Minda could not help but have a short impish giggle at his expense now that they were somewhat clear, before taking it as a compliment ”Why thank you. It’s not that impressive though, I hardly even have to try” and being smug about it for good measure.

”Now get behind here, before someone spots you” she told him after, patting a spot so he could sit next to her with their backs to the van (and the outpost) behind them.

”Shouldn’t we get back to the others? They might be wondering where we went. Plus, we gotta tell them what we know as soon as possible, in case something happens.”

”Sounds like a good plan to me” Midna agreed, glad that the mad dash had apparently put the other one, namely to fight all of the people in the base, into the grave where it belonged.

”I can make these gates, which we can use to travel right back to the hideout, so we won’t have to walk either” she added, before pointing a little ways up the tunnel to where a light was glowing, and a the wall seemed to curve in a bit, and suggested ”and I think there might be a side path up there? I would rather not put the gateway in sight of the base, so how about we check that out?”

Raz nodded, working his shoulders to ease the post-riding-under-a-car cramps. ”Hey, you’re the expert on interspatial transport portals. I never got to that course yet.”

Nodded in response, and then slipped into the shadows again, appearing over at the inlet. Within, like she had hopped, was a door, one that, with a bit of magical trickery and brute force, she got open, revealing a dusty unused maintenance room.

She declared it ”Perfect” and immediately set up the portal, a crack in space forming just below the ceiling, before it opened wide, perfectly black squares unfolding across surface of the stone, and then a lattice of teal lines of power forming on those, twisting in on themselves till they had formed a tunnel into the space between the light world, and the twilight realm. Far away in Seiran, the portal she had set up there opened in the same way, both heralding and awaiting their arrival.

”There we go, ready to go” she declared, before holding out a crooked arm and telling to ”Hold on to me while we go, unless you want to find out what kind of animal my home will turn you into I’m sure”

Raz looked into the portal, then up at Midna’s hand. For a brief moment, he just thought. ”...maybe another time,” Raz finally said in full seriousness, taking the imp’s hand, ready to traverse the twilight.

The princes quirked a smile, assuming it was still actually a joke, before, without ceremony, they both were sucked up into the portal. They skimmed through the dark, getting glimpses of an endless eternally sunset (or was it sunrise?) lit void filled with floating islands and cities of gray stone and glowing lines of magic, so close, yet so far away, and then they arrived at their destination.

Upon said arrival, the princess gave an uncharacteristically wistful sigh and a ”someday” before she released his hand and loudly informed him, and everyone in the building: ”and we’re back”

”Miss us?” Raz added, very quietly following it with, ”I always wanted to say that,” under his breath.
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Hidden 1 yr ago Post by MULTI_MEDIA_MAN


Member Seen 3 days ago

Zenkichi Hasegawa

Midgar- Sector 7 Slums

Lvl 3 (15/30) -> Lvl 3 (16/20)

Word Count: 400 words

Upon returning to the others, Zenkichi found that the mood hadn't really improved at all, and Roxas still hadn't returned after passing by him earlier. Part of him was worried about the kid, though he knew they all had some big emotions to work out right now, and he couldn't fault anybody for how they handled them given his own history in that regard.

It wasn't long until Giovanna had enough of their moping and took Isaac up on his offer to treat them, calling out the name of a local spot. The engineer was too busy to join, though and told them to put it on his tab. Well, that was a depressing look into how his daughter probably viewed him: how many times was he "too busy" for her?

Shaking his head to dispel the melancholy thought, Zenkichi went with the others to the bar that Giovanna had mentioned, helping to drag/carry Tora along. He didn't bother with any words of consolation or encouragement: If Poppi could be saved, Tora could do it. If not...

When they reached the bar, the positive atmosphere was almost overwhelming. He ignored the tiny part of him that wanted to be angry that anybody could celebrate given the circumstances that bought them this freedom, remembering that they all chose to fight. They knew the risks. Poppi, Cain, and Marshal all knew the risks of going out to fight the machines and they did it anyway. He wouldn't let his own issues take away from the fact that there was cause to celebrate.

Unfortunately, Giovanna came in with even more bad news once her call was finished.

Psych-OSF was compromised. Peach was turned into an Other somehow, and taken away by a team from Seiran that was apparently acting against the main branch. Hmm. Another branch directly under Konoe's control, and corrupt as all hell. That wasn't a coincidence, and Zenkichi said as much. "Konoe again, huh...? The fact that they can turn people into Others...not gonna lie, that scares me. He's used my daughter as a pawn to get at me before...but at least she's safe back at your headquarters. For now, that is." When their drinks and food finally arrived, Zenkichi quickly thanked their host and cracked open his beer, taken small chunks out of his pretzel and tossing them in his mouth. "Food's good, at least."
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Double
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Double Hard-Boiled

Member Seen 9 hrs ago

Home of Tears ~ Downtown

Word Count: 337
Level 4 Ganondorf: 30/40
Exp: 1
NEW EXP Balance--- 31/40

Ganondorf was still fuming to himself when he eventually returned to the city. The Consul was dead, but that didn't stop the Gerudo from being bitter about not getting to be the one who finished him off. In any other scenario he probably would have wrecked that whole tower in his anger. But between him being suddenly sleep deprived and the myriad of other things that infernal consul had done to him, Ganondorf was convinced that it wasn't worth the energy.

He'd broken off from the group at some point and started wandering around downtown on his own. He was honestly too exhausted to really take note of where he was or where he was going. Eventually he found himself going inside of an assuming-looking bar. If nothing else he could drown his frustrations away a bit. Thanks to how much the Seekers had looted from P's coffers, Ganondorf had plenty of geo to spend so money was no object at the moment.

Once inside he took a seat and barely registered that it was being run by a spider person and a humanoid tree person. He ordered ale and told them to just keep it coming. Then he drank. And drank. And drank again. Until eventually his vision blurred and went dark.

The next thing Ganondorf knew, he was waking up a few hours later. His head was resting on the table, him having apparently fallen asleep due to exhaustion and being drunk. Of course, now he was suffering a splitting headache from the hangover. But at least his rage had subsided for now. He paid his tab and exited. He needed to figure out exactly how long it'd been and it would probably be wise to meet back up with the others.
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Double
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Double Hard-Boiled

Member Seen 9 hrs ago

Valley of Ruin -> Sector 07 Slums -> Seventh Heaven

@Lugubrious Tora, Giovanna | @Yankee Pit | @MULTI_MEDIA_MAN Zenkichi Hasegawa | @Archmage MC Susie | @Dark Cloud Partitio Yellowil

Word Count: 430
Level 6 Roxas: 1/60
Exp: 1
NEW EXP Balance--- 2/60

With all his aimless wandering, Roxas did eventually start to tire. Now he found himself on the roof of a dilapidated building overlooking a section of the slums. In the distance he could see a bar with a sign reading "Seventh Heaven" but he paid it no mind for the time being. Instead the Nobody was just thinking. And after a little while he started talking, as if to someone who wasn't actually there.

"How did you do it?" Roxas asked - even pausing a moment as if waiting for a response before continuing, "The way you would just grin and bear it, happily taking the weight of the whole world on your shoulders without even giving it a second thought. You could just point your Keyblade and make a miracle happen, almost like you were making it look easy. Then there's me. Every time I ever tried to help someone or make something right, I just ended up failing at it. Even at the Keyblade Graveyard, you had to help us deal with Xemnas and Saix. That bus driver, those kids who were transformed... and Poppi. If you were here you would've saved them. So why couldn't I? Just what is it that you have that I don't, Sora?" then after another pause the Nobody found himself raising his voice, "Answer me!" But of course, no one did.

He could still see that bar in the distance. After a few more moments, he saw some familiar figures approaching it and entering through its doors. Giovanna and the rest of the Seekers. With a heavy sigh Roxas scaled his way back down to the ground level and started walking toward the bar. He may as well meet back up with the others. It wasn't like he was accomplishing much of anything just sulking out here by himself. He hesitated a moment when he reached the door. Was he going to be scolded for taking off like he did? Or yelling at the others at the Valley of Ruin just before he went to help Tora? Well, it didn't matter, he had to face the music sooner or later. He opened the door and entered. He took down his hood once he was inside.

"Hey... Did I miss anything?"
Hidden 1 yr ago Post by Scarifar
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Scarifar Presto~!

Member Seen 2 hrs ago

Location: Home of Tears
Level: 3
Experience: 51/30 (Level up available)
Word Count: <750 (+1 EXP)
@Archmage MC

"Modify time, you say?" Rubcik nodded, impressed. "That explains my sudden afflictions yesterday. I wish I could've seen it for myself..." Rubcik had truly missed a prime opportunity to study something interesting. He fantasized about the various applications of such an ability for a time, then Sectonia brought up the topic of his recent purchases.

"Huh? Ahh, yes!" Rubick exclaimed as he remembered. He reached into his robe and proceeded to pull out the components of the Scepter: the Staff of Wizardry, the Ogre Axe, the Blade of Alacrity, and the Point Booster. "Now if I just..." Rubick muttered as he rearranged the first three items so they all intersected each other in the middle, then proceeded to hammer the Point Booster into the intersection three times. On the third strike, the items suddenly merged into each other, instantly forming a long wooden staff with a large blue glowing gem as its head. "Behold, the Aghanim's Scepter!" Rubick announced, holding up his newly crafted Scepter.

However, when he turned to look back at Sectonia, he saw that she had already gone to have a meeting with the Koopa Troop and a couple others. Rubick joined them at their table, wondering what was so interesting, and listened in. It was mostly a recap and some musings about the events with Asgore and the giant clock, but other than that, there was little else of note. Once the meeting concluded, Rubick once again presented his Scepter to Sectonia, "Once again, here is the Aghamin's Scepter!" The blue gem glowed brightly, as if brimming with power. "Go ahead and examine it for yourself."
Hidden 1 yr ago 1 yr ago Post by Dark Cloud
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Dark Cloud 💀Vibin' beyond the Veil💀

Member Seen 14 days ago

Wordage: 879 words (+2 points)
Experience: 6/10 EXP
Location: Habbo Hotel ➡ Terminal Cafe
Rubick's @Scarifar, Bowser & Co's @DracoLunaris, Nadia's @Lugubrious, Ichiban's @TruthHurts22, Therion and Primrose's @Yankee

Though the cobbled avenues and canal-ridden byways of this city were alien to Artorias, the familiar racket eventually coaxed him to a somber section of the Home of Tears' western district: Grave Boulevard. It couldn't be said that the undead 'lived' here, but zombies, skeletons, and ghosts did seem common here; if you lacked a pulse and weren't out haunting the Milk Bar -strategically placed between Grave Boulevard and the Cat Towers- or the Terminal cafe, this was the place to be.

When Artorias found the source of the clamor it seemed less like a run-of-the-mill smithy and more like a crumbling mausoleum, to put it charitably. There, the skeletal blacksmith Vamos toiled away, his ancient-looking forge alight with the eerie glow of an unnatural green flame. Vamos barely looked up when Artorias approached. Knights were a common sight around smiths, and he hardly needed to petition them for their patronage, even if he was the chatty type. Instead he kept banging away, shaping the serrated swordblade of a flamberge into shape before dousing the metal in oil.

Beforehand as he stalked the sound of metal against metal through the narrow walkways leading to the mausoleum, Artorias held his sword tight like the knight were about to go into combat. So accustomed now to finding enemies at every corner did the lack of hostility caused him a certain amount of unease. Until he set foot within the darkened barrow of the smithy did the Knight Artorias loosen a grip upon his greatsword, resting by it's flat on his shoulder.

Artorias was visibly exhausted, his armor ragged and as he spoke up to the skeletal smith he sounded as though he hadn't used his voice in some time "Thou seemst quite adept with the hammer...What is thy name?" the knight said after the stranger dipped the blade he was working on in the trough by his side.

Without looking up from his work, the blacksmith replied. "Vamos." He then moved away from the anvil with the steaming blade to lay it to rest on a workbench, then took a prepared wooden handle and a chisel in his bony fingers to chip out a hollow into it for the insertion of the blade's tang.

Most blacksmiths were alike in the way that they were seldom spoken when they were working in the forge, thus the towering knight took no slight at the curtness of Vamos' demeanor he simply nodded before speaking again "Artorias." the knight said in simple greeting with a slight inclination of his back in what could be considered a bow "My blade is dull, and dirty with the blood of vermin. My eyes aren't as keen as they once were, what dost thou makest of the state of my weapon?" the knight presented his mighty blade to the skeletal blacksmith to look upon.

To the weapon's credit, Vamos allowed his eye sockets to linger on it longer than he would have for most weapons. "It'll kill well enough," he remarked simply. The more Artorias heard his voice, the stranger it sounded, with a bizarre, almost crushed reverberation to it. "Can't infuse it. But I can repair it if you need, or refine it if you've got the titanite," he added, his lack of concern for the blade's artistry increasingly apparent.

"If I had a shard to spare blacksmith," the knight said shaking his head "Dost thou knowest where one might find some?" Artorias rested his weapon once more upon his shoulders.

"I can sell shards for 200 hundred apiece," Vamos mentioned. "Other than that? A cave somewhere, I imagine."

"And what for the repair of such a blade?" Artorias asked, maybe if he had the souls to spare he could pay the blacksmith to repair his weapon.

Almost begrudgingly, Vamos took another look at the greatsword to ascertain its exact durability. After so much action without proper service, it had seen better days. "Three fifty," he declared after a moment.

The knight stood for a brief moment in silence, his breathing the only sound that escaped from beneath his hood until he grunted "I shalt be back when I hath the funds to profer to thee." Artorias turned to leave, armor clattering as he went about exiting Vamos' smithy "Farewell for now, blacksmith." he bid the undead fellow goodbye, not expecting much more than a grunt in return as he left. And stepped back into the streets where water fell from up above.

Alone, or rather the only one with a faint pulse within the narrow pathway of the Grave Boulevard; Artorias' boots carried him westward through the streets of the city, wondering where he was going and even if it mattered. Had the Magus told these Seekers of him? He hadn't even told him where he would be going after leaving him in the hotel lobby. Though he ended up winding his way towards what looked like a lively place though the individuals there mostly seemed anything but alive, where he found a familiar face.

"Hmph," he said as he approached Rubick and the strangers he accompanied ignoring a server who attempted to bar him though as the knight met the undead gaze they shrunk back "Greetings to you Magus...And present company." the knight though his tone was not unpleasant he sounded a bit aggressive around so many people, the knight wasn't used to crowded places.

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