Hidden 4 mos ago Post by Ponn
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Olivia gasped in surprise, when, in response to her impassioned plea, Tsubasa presented her with an ornate golden rose. So shocked was the azure-clad beauty by this unexpected gift that she completely missed the conclusion to Tesni and Tsubasa’s little duel, only barely catching the masked maiden’s parting words, before she vanished in a flash of light, taking the remaining Pageless with her.

Well, at least she realizes what she did here was wrong, Olivia reflected with a weary sigh. I suppose that’s something…

Still, that knowledge did little to brighten her somber mood. Looking down at her gleaming rose, the azure-clad maiden couldn’t help but frown as a pang of sorrow pierced her heart. Although the golden gift was indeed a thing of beauty, that beauty was irrevocably tarnished by Tsubasa’s recent actions, the repercussions of which were plain to see. She had wanted so much to believe that Tsubasa was an ally, a friend, that the masked maiden was just misunderstood by her peers, much like Olivia herself had so often been. But no, this was not simply some mere misunderstanding. Tsubasa clearly believed that her end goals were noble enough to justify whatever means she chose to employ in order to achieve them, regardless of how much suffering they caused…

In the aftermath of the attack, Olivia found that there was precious little she or Xolys could do to assist in recovery operations. Drossel seemed like the only person capable of mitigating the effects suffered by the victims of Tsubasa’s forced fusings, while others seemed to have the repairs to the cafeteria well in hand. The blonde beauty was just about to depart with Suzuya, when she was met with the incredibly unexpected sight of Valeria escorting a bound Tsubasa through the cafeteria’s main entrance. Stealing her resolve, the Ethereal Rose made her way over to the pair, being carful not to trip on any of the broken tiles.

“I-I’m sorry, Miss Tsubasa,” she told the bound young woman as she held out the golden rose. “This was a very generous gift, and I truly do appreciate the thought put into it, but… I cannot accept such a token of appreciation from someone who has just caused so much anguish to so many innocent people. You said you only wanted to help your fellow Magical Girls, a-and I believe that! B-But there has to be a better way than this! she added, her eyes beginning to water as she gestured to the scene of recovery playing out around them. “A-And I think we can find it if we all work together, so please…” she begged, as she placed the rose in Tsubasa’s hands. “Please remember that you don’t have to do this alone.” With these parting words, Olivia infused the returned gift with a small portion of her magic, causing a faint bluish aura to appear around the golden flower, speckled with an array of shimmering stars.

Turning around, the azure-clad beauty was met with the sight of a commotion surrounding a newly arrived sliver-haired young woman. The names “Merlin”, “Miss Marrywell”, and the title “Grand Minister”, were being uttered in awed and reverential tones, but Olivia herself simply stared at the scene in puzzlement.

That’s the Grand Minister?

Of course, Olivia had never seen the school’s enigmatic leader before, and what little she knew of her came from what few vague and often conflicting rumors she’d overheard, but, still, the young lady before her looked so... ordinary. Perhaps she was just exceedingly humble, like Ozma, the Ethereal Rose reflected. Or perhaps this wasn’t even her true Magical Girl form? Perhaps the supposedly ancient headmistress thought it would be far too intimidating were she to reveal her full imposing majesty, much like an eldritch horror shattering the minds of those unprepared to behold such a transcendently gorgeous visage? In any case, Olivia decided to move a little closer to hear what the Grand Minister had to say…

Upon finally returning to her room, Olivia was about to get ready for bed, when she noticed a piece of paper on the floor.

“What’s this?” she wondered, picking it up. “A letter? For me? she inquired, her eyes lighting up and a delighted smile spreading across her face. “Oh, wow! I’ve never received a handwritten letter from anyone before!”

Upon reading the short message, the blonde beauty was filled with joy. For so long, no one had even wanted to speak with her, and now someone had taken the time to write her a letter? One that wasn’t just a collection of insults? The lovely maiden was practically beside herself, and although Bonnie’s room wasn’t far by any means, Olivia wanted to respond to her classmate’s letter with one of her own. Sitting down at her small desk, she retrieved a pen and began writing.

Dear Bonnie

Thank you so much for sending this letter! Your kind words really warmed my heart! I’d very much like to get to know you better as well, and I think a sleepover would be a wonderful way to do that! In fact, I was actually thinking of organizing one myself! How would you feel about having it in either the music room or the art room? Helmi, that is, Wilhelmina, told me that both of those locations are possibly haunted, and I thought it would be so much fun if we could find out for sure! What do you think?

I look forward to hearing back from you!

Thanks again,

P.S. Darling Xolys says thanks, too!

“Oh, this is so exciting!” Olivia gushed. “It’s almost like having a pen pal!”

Neatly folding the letter, she crept up to Bonnie’s door and carefully slid it underneath.

I really do hope this all works out, Olivia thought to herself as she returned to her own room. It will be my very first slumber party, and in a haunted classroom, no less! Oh, I simply cannot wait!
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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by KoL
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KoL Knight of Lorelei

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Eins was left speechless –horrified, even– by the conclusion of the duel between Tesni and Roma. Even though she knew it quite well, the destructive power of their grimoires… was it really right to even think of magical girls as normal people? Or were they something else? Eins couldn’t answer that question back then, and she still couldn’t do it now. All she could do was what was within her grasp. Still, to think that it was not the aggressor, but rather one of them who did this much damage to their school, and to their allies… no –If Eins was right, Tesni actually used her own companions as weapons to corner Roma. Why was everyone else taking the case so lightly when it was so… wrong?

“I– Thanks, but I didn’t do anything worthy of praise. Even now, I can barely help anyone when it really matters,” Eins replied to Mika’s praise with a downcast smile. “At any rate, I suppose that a little senior outing to let off some steam wouldn’t hurt. At least after I help the victims,” she added after pinching her own cheek, chiding herself for sounding too negative.

While Eins was busy administering first-aid to those in need and getting the girls whose grimoires had been more damaged back to the infirmary, where they could recover, a rare occurrence took shape in their midst. None other than the Grand Minister in flesh and magic, descending from her sanctuary to alleviate the suffering of the afflicted as well as seemingly greet the return of a prodigal astray daughter.

The Grand Minister

“Fear not, my children. The storm has already passed, until the tides have once again turned, all that lies before you is the motherly embrace of the Winds and the Earth,” Lilian –or rather, Merlin’s– voice was lyrical. It was almost as if flowers bloomed in her very wake and a spectral, phantasmagoric song soothed the hearts of all those hearing her words –no, maybe it did happen indeed, since many of the present –Eins included– would feel the weight of yoke of suffering be lifted from their shoulders and the girls that had been hurt by Roma’s ploy would be able to rest in peace, at least for now, while their leader walked among them.

“I know what you have gone through. But now you can rest. Rest assured that you endured the darkest night. However, is not the time to grief, instead, we should celebrate,” Merlin’s words provoked a wave of disbelieving faces, and whispers rose here and there, as the gathered girls who could still get a hold of themselves wondered what was there for them to celebrate after such a night.

The Grand Minister’s next actions would make it clear what she meant.

“My heart is filled with joy to have you return to us, my dear lost child,” Merlin said as she knelt to the captured Roma and cupped the other girl’s face with her hand. She also bent forward, touching her forehead against the other girl’s. “You have gone astray for too long. But to know that your light is not truly lost is the greatest gift you could ever give me.”

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Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Majoras End
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Majoras End Oyasumi~

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So that was...for nothing. It took a bit of willpower for Lupin not to, for the lack of a better term, go apeshit then and there. She had ran back to the school as quick as she could, but no matter how fast any of them were the damaged had been done.

And the culprit? She fled.

She. Fled.


A dumbfounded Lupin walked further into what used to be the cafeteria, carefully stepping around every piece of debris before gently setting Stripes down. Though her widened eyes continued to take in their surroundings silently. Injured, infected, property damage. No Tsubasa. The temptation to blame someone for letting her get away was there. She ignored it. She knew better than that, and the others knew their enemy more than she did.

Maybe that was why she felt like she was lagging behind back there. She was new. Too new. Why the hell did they even drag her into this wild goose chase when she's only been here a week? Why did Roma only feign guilt now? How were they going to help everyone who got infected? Where the hell were the teachers?? Questions and thoughts both grim and concerned raced in circles in her head. Celina almost didn't catch what Stripes explained to her, her only response was a half-aware nod.

She looked lost. What was she supposed to do? Lupin wasn't a healer. She wasn't a builder either. She was just a hunter, simple as that. Maybe she could head back out to track Tsubasa down? Though before the wolf could disappear, a few things happened.

Lupin's eyes seemed to widen further as the metal-limbed teacher brought back an arrested Roma.

Maybe she stayed behind for the chance to play hero? She rolled her eyes when Olivia approached the corrupted magical girl with ignorant, emotion-driven kindness.

...No. Don't think like that. Besides, now they can get to the point and-

Wait, no. Someone else appeared. A more welcome presence than what Roma could ever be. A strange presence, yet comforting, and melodious. The Headmaster; the Grand Minister, had arrived. The wolf gave her a look when Merlin said this was a time for celebration. Yeah, sure, having a chunk of your school and students get attacked is one hell of a party. Maybe she should've brought balloons. Sarcasm aside, she eventually realized what the Minister meant. And her frustrations she was holding back began to leak out. Oh, the furious glare she bore...

"...Are you kidding me? No, no. You've got to be kidding me." Lupin growled. "That bitch led us to an attempted reverse-ambush, tried to trap us as she trashed your school, hurt your students, and BOTH of you still want to be sunshine and rainbows to her?!" Her gaze snapped between Merlin and Rose, then remained at the former. "Do you even have a way to fix everyone's grimores she's tainted?! How do we even know she won't try and pull something like this again?!"

...No, Moonlight Tsubasa won't pull something like this again.

She'll make sure of it.

Her expression turned into something that could only be forewarning. An animal preparing to strike. Her target won't be able to escape this time, she just needed to be fast enough. Lupin drew a single knife in one hand, breaking into a sprint towards Roma.

Someone might want to hold her back. NOW.
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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by Lonewolf685
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Lonewolf685 Inquisitive and Immortal

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Roma Bhakti

As droll as it was to return to the scene of her crime there was a certain justice to be savored in having the only teacher she'd found respect for bringing her there. A flicker of righteousness rewarded for putting everything on the line to see an injustice righted. In a sense it was exactly the reaction she wanted, thus she had fallen upon her proverbial sword and cast herself upon the mercy of freshly bloodied and battered Magical Girls.

Never had Merrywell known such a blow and, if there was any goodness in the world, it would never again. Yet Roma's head was unbowed as she was brought in Valeria's grasp, a prisoner but an unrepentant one. Even as Olivia approached her and returned the golden rose, a soft shimmer of dream-like blue wafting from the petals as it found itself pressed between the layers of her vestaments. Tsubasa's expression was inscrutable, the stuff of carved marble that could not express the tremor of remorse that her actions where neccesitated in the first place.

"Where I to have met two souls as noble as yours when I first returned to this sunless land I may well have abandoned my plans entirely." The words met Olivia's back, the Magical Girl already departing to the embrace of her paramour and the other Magical Girls. But for all the wishes she may have held for things to have been simple and clean, there was no sanctuary to be found as a melody of calm poured across the courtyard.

"But the cause of my crimes now stands before us." Alas the venom she longed to convey never reached her tongue, voice still placid as a lake on a windless day whilst the target of all her enmity met her face to face. There was no flush of rage or mounting horror, meerly an imposed serenity as the black and white rabbit girl stored unblinking into the eyes of the Grand Minister. Their foreheads met in an almost fond embrace and had she the range of motion her ears would have wrung Lillian's neck like a sodden rag.

"My light has never wavered, merely revealed to me the absense of your own, Merlin the Charlatan. Merlin the Incubus. Merlin the Maker of Kings. The Witness to eternity's passing and the dust of dreams."

To be held so tenderly by the very pinnacle of injustice she fought against had a dark revulsion churn in her gut. The flicker of movement as the inevitable happened almost seemed a welcome end.

Suzuya Kuzunoha

The biggest surprise upon returning to Merrywell after her dead sprint across the rooftops was that the perpetrator was right there and no one seemed hostile. The spirit of her Grimoire had rather grim views of traitors, but Moonlight Tsubasa was already captured. Logically a prisoner was kept for ransom, information, or to await punishment, but this was still the heat of the moment and as she sailed over the walls of Merrywell, there was the expectation of greater hostility still persisting.

Oh, sometimes I hate to be right. Vixen and Grimoire were of mirrored thoughts as a fellow beastly Magical Girl broke ranks with a howl, bloodlust radiating from her in a corona of magic as she sprinted near horizontally to plunge her blade into the captive Celestial. How she hoped to achieve anything with both the Grand Minister and Valeria already holding Tsubasa eluded her but she would not stand idle and find out.

With a leap Suzuya closed the distance and rolled in the air, her tails bristling with steel before flinging the long poles of blazing yari into the ground. The tri bladed spears skewered the earth behind her in a line of imposing flame, a wall at her back as the fox barred her path with both hands open, palms raised to Lupin. When she spoke it was not with the voice of a frail wall flower, but the commanding tone of a warrior mother radiating disapproval at an unruly child. "You will lower your blade before you shame yourself any further!"

"I can't believe I said that!" A thoroughly mortified and untransformed Suzuya bleeted as she staggered into her dorm, exhausted emotionally and horrified with her actions. She clutched at her chest, feeling her heart race as she slumped against the door...and found the curious sight of Olivia fiddling with an open letter. Curious that anyone still wrote letters, but if she stopped to think about it there were probably still Magical Girls capable of working a telegraph line more comfortably then a cell phone.

"..." Curious enough to forget her own fatigue she ambled forward, hesitant like a skittish gazelle and read it from over Olivia's elbow. The contents where bizarrely mundane for such heavy events that had just transpired, but the sheltered girl that ached for such activities felt her interest unerringly pulled to it. "A sleepover? That sounds fun. Umm, I hope you all have a fun time...do you think there's room for one more?"

It was a little silly to be so hesitant in asking, as by now even Suzuya knew Olivia was as friendly as could be and wouldn't even consider a refusal, but it still felt like a big step forward in not relying on Tomoe Gozen's influence!
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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by McFazzer
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So I wasn’t wrong… Roma had saved the prone magical girl. Roma did something to those at the epicentre of the blast and she wanted them to survive. Tesni couldn’t exactly call it good news, since now there had to be a reason why… but what do you do when you find an enemy’s weakness? You hammer at it until they break, especially when you can’t win in a fair fight.
But before the battle could continue, events cascaded into one another. The rescue, the retreat and then the enigmatic magical girl was gone. And then she was back again, due to a tank barrel? Tesni felt a headache coming on, separate from the golden band wrapped tightly around her head. In a pose that didn’t match the magical attire she wore, Tesni slumped down on a piece of rubble roughly chair height before suppressing a sigh.

She could feel it. Students and teachers alike stared at her with gazes varying from suspicion or disgust. Hand on her temple she massaged it, hoping it would relieve the headache the counsellor and what was her name… Stripes? She had an actual name, but Tesni wasn’t in the mood to scramble through her memory to find it.

“Oh, my hand-eye coordination in perfect. But when the enemy seems to have the ability to distort space in some manner it’s somewhat irrelevant.” Feeling a hand on her shoulder Tesni looked up and saw the counsellor again and raised an eyebrow at her words.

“Good to know that my mental wellbeing is of greater importance than dealing with a problem, I guess? If you want to know how the fight made me feel, I can sum it up right now. Shitty. Look at their eyes.” Tesni looked around at the crowd of magical girls and teachers.

“You’re not stupid, and neither are they. They know what I did, but by the same token I know what they did… fuck all. I wasn’t quiet before; I was quite pointed when I shouted out to most everyone on campus. ‘If you don’t get out here and help, you forfeit the right to bitch about the outcome’. I definitely said something like that, right? Judging by their actions a lot of teachers seemed to think ‘well that lunatic of a magical girl has it under control. She can definitely handle the enemy that successfully infiltrated Marywell all on her own’, didn’t they? They didn’t show up after all, and look around… I can just imagine them lining up to bitch about it. Whatever, words won’t convince… them… uuuuuugh!” Tesni finally noticed who had seemingly arrived with Ozma, the Grand Minister… and she was forgiving Roma.

“Oh great, the big boss shows up after everything is already done. And Suzy is here, neat. Hey foxy Suzy! Shame only matters if you give a shit! That’s what being shameless is! And as much as I would love to cave Miss Enigmatic’s head I in, I don’t think I’ll be managing it past all of… that” a dismissive gesture in the direction of the teachers circling Roma was the action that finally saw Tesni revert from her magical state.

“Well, when this ‘forgiveness’ blows up in everyone’s face I won’t say ‘I told you so’, but I will be working on a more reliable way to fight a speedy space warping magical girl in the meantime… someone has the right idea over there.” Looking at Lupin and how she was barely restrained from just shanking Roma by Suzuya, Tesni grinned content that she wasn’t the only one who thought this was a very dumb way to handle magical radical.
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Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by Sonnambula
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Sonnambula Stealer of Girls

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Though Nessie had known what she was going to return to at Marrywell, she couldn't have had any concept of the genuine severity of things until she finally returned. Having missed most of the action, only there to witness the tail-end of Lilac and Tesni's encounter with the rogue Magical Girl herself from atop her broom. Meanwhile she did her best to assist Olivia in the effort to defend the vulnerable students whom the Pageless relentlessly targeted, confronting them in packs at a time with dense bursts of water pressure to send them flying away into oblivion. The only thing that distracted her to that end was Olivia's desperate and despairing cries towards Roma, her friend's emotional outburst kindling a burning flame of anger within the young Scot as the Dark Magical Girl returned the pleas with a look of total apathy. And though, given the rest of the surrounding chaos, she wasn't quite able to decipher much of what Tsubasa was saying to her opponents, the dispersal of the Pageless in her direction was enough for Nessie to get a hint.

A hint that perhaps came a little too late, unfortunately for her, and despite her best efforts, swooping in towards Roma on her broom with Grimoire at the ready and fire burning in her eyes, she could only watch as the darkness whisked their foe out of harm's way before a spell could even reach her. There were a few stoic moments of silence as the girls, who had been through so much, sort of just stood and stared at where the dark witch had been only seconds before. Nessie looked over at her friends, despondent and unsure of what to say, checking them over for injuries before turning tail on her broom.

"I'll... I'll go check and see if anyone's hurt." She was already moving away as she spoke, grinding her teeth silently together in frustration. The fact that she'd done this was bad enough, attacking a community that, in Nessie's eyes, hadn't done anything wrong, but the fact that she could get away with it? To attack the very core of their society and leave them to pick up the pieces? That really pissed Nessie off. She could feel her heart sink more as she went from person to person, checking each student she passed for injury or whatever sinister affliction Tsubasa had imposed on some of their Grimoires. Each one she came across, with that stinging darkness they aggressively emanated, felt like another nail in the coffin. It was disheartening beyond measure.

Which is why Nessie was more than a little confused when Valeria suddenly came marching back onto the scene with a captive Roma in tow. The young Scot could barely believe her eyes in fact, freezing completely while her mind questioned unfolding events, as well as the events that led up to this. And, as though to answer the presence of the embodiment of discourse, the embodiment of serenity arrived in the form of the Grand Minister herself. If anything, however, once she'd come to her senses, this angered Nessie even more. Disregarding the consequences, she strode over to the gathered students and teachers surrounding the Minister and the prisoner, her face contorting more and more into a look of rage and indignation.

"Whose school did you say this is? Yours?! Where the fuck were you through all this, how is it your choice what we do with this delusional bi-?!" Nessie stopped herself as Lupin, provoked by the Grand Minister's decisions, decided to take 'actions speak louder than words route', lunging at Roma before being ultimately stopped by the much more level-headed Suzuya. Nonetheless, Nessie couldn't find herself disagreeing with Lupin's sentiment. If it were her choice to decide whether this woman lived or died then...

Satisfied that no more attempts on anyone's life would be made, the Scottish girl finally turned to her fellow redhead standing by at the scene.

"Ozma, there's got to be something you can do! I mean, she can't just be-!" Once again the girl cut herself off, this time with a gasp, as there behind the Crimson Comet stood Maria de Borbon herself, very much alive and looking well. Qualms with the Grand Minister and Moonlight Tsubasa were cast aside for now, as Nessie charged at her teacher and threw her arms around the senior Magical Girl, pulling away after just a moment to make sure it really was her.

"Am I bloody glad to see you! I was so worried, that Pageless it-... and then you-... you... you haven't got a scratch on you... What the hell happened?" Nessie asked breathlessly, in utter disbelief at either possibilities that came to her mind: that Maria had either run away from the fight or left that big bastard in the dust while remaining completely unscathed.

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Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by BrokenPromise
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BrokenPromise Cuter than you

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Stripes gave a huff when Tesni misinterpreted her sarcastic comment for genuine advice. She should have expected that from a dimwit. Whatever.

With so many magical girls in the area, Stripes's strength was lowered to that below of a mundane human. She barely had the strength to lift a two-by-four. But with a blink of her orange eyes, they turned emerald green.Stripes became Silvia.

The grand minister's poorly timed appearance did little to spark a flame in Silvia's chest. It wasn't that her enchanted charisma didn't work on Silvia, just that it was hard to get her to feel anything to begin with. She never ate in the cafeteria and she didn't know any of the people who had their grimoires corrupted. It was hard to care much about what was going on.

It might have helped if Ozma cared, but she didn't seem to. She just dragged Roma into the school and appeared okay with Merlin having her back in school. She did not stir. Silvia thought Ozma might have protested as capturing Roma was her idea. But if Ozma didn't care, why should she? It unnerved stripes that Ozma was impartial about it. It didn't make sense.

Unless Ozma and Merlin were one in the same.

It wouldn't be hard, and it explained a lot of mysteries. Such as why Ozma was so strong, how she got clearance to do things that only the faculty should be able to do, why the minister was seldom seen, and many others. It wouldn't even be that hard. Merlin was a master of enchantments and illusions. Creating a magical girl should be easy. They kind of acted the same in that they were both so jubilant. Everything Ozma did could be recreated by the minister. Or was it the other way around?

A sensible person would ask Silvia "But why?" And that was easy to answer. The two biggest reasons that came to Silvia's mind were that Merlin could use Ozma to break her own rules. Ozma was outside the system, so she was not held to the same standards as the minister herself. The second reason was that due to Merlin's importance, they probably didn't let her enter dangerous areas out of fear that she could be hurt. So she could use Ozma to live a double life. Or if Ozma was the real one, maybe she did something to merlin and was pretending to be her with their powers.

But now that she had this epiphany, who would she tell it to? How would she set out unmasking Ozma, her former idol? How did she feel knowing that Ozma, the strongest magical girl to hold a fable, was a sham and nothing more than the minister's way of manipulating the rules of their own establishment? And if not that, someone who was manipulating Marrywell as a whole, playing the students and faculty as puppets.

She looked straight at Ozma.


Silvia went back to piling up debris.

Then there was Lupin trying to kill someone and Suzuya trying to stop them. seemed like a simple disagreement to Silvia. Magical girls were soooooo dramatic...

Lilian was ignoring Mika, and Mika found it just as easy to do the same. The minister could turn the entire academy into her harem if she wanted too, but Mika's legend made her nigh impervious to to such effects. All Lilian wanted to do was stir up more drama, and she didn't need Mika to do that. So Mika turned her attention back to the students.


Mika was only half listening to Tesni. There was a lot going on and it wasn't like Mika could dedicate her attention fully to any one situation. "Your well being is important to me, but so is that of everyone else. Lets ignore the judgmental gazes for a moment and look around. This can't be something you're proud of." With a huff, she crossed her arms. "We can't dictate who takes blame for our actions. If you left your lunch unattended in your classroom because of an emergency, and I walked into that classroom, would it make you feel any better to know I said 'Alright, last call for this sandwich!' before I ate it? I don't think it would." Mika's hand moved to her hips. This wasn't exactly a private place to talk, but if Tesni was alright airing her grievances here, maybe she didn't care about her privacy so much. "Diversifying your skill set is great, but you had everything you needed to win that fight. I told Bon-bon to help you and she ran into a wave of pageless just to reach you. If you had tried-" Mika rubbed the back of her head. "Alright, you wanna train and get stronger? Relationships are just like muscles. The less you use them, the weaker they become. I understand you really wanted someone's help back there, but that's why everyone ignored you. You can't just go off relying on your own strength all the time. You need to keep those physical and emotional muscles strong!" She patted Tesni on the head before turning to Drossel.


"Sorry about that, Strudel. Guess I still need to help students out every one in a while." Mika flashed a grin. "Don't be too bummed about your performance. We got blindsided and stemmed the damage as best we could. But I've been thinking..." She stepped closer to Eins. "A lot of the kids are curious how your powers work, right? Maybe if you use them on me in a special demonstration everyone will be begging for a taste. Even if-"

@Lonewolf685@Majoras End

Then the sound of a fire starting caught Mika's attention. Followed by Suzuya and Tesni exchanging words.

"Aigorost's eyes!" Mika approached the gathering of magical girls. "With all that's happened, do we really need to add more fighting and a fire to the-"

The sprinkler system kicked on.

Every overhead sprinkler sprung to life and soaked the room. The broken sheetrock, timber, and the magical girls themselves. They were all wet, and the air rung as the fire alarm went off. Mika hadn't been in a great mood ever since Lilian showed up, but that mild irritation was growing. She clinched her teeth as her eyes swayed between the two students. Mika's short hair stuck flat against her head.

"A lesser student counselor... May be tempted to use violence in a situation like this." She raised her finger. "But that's exactly what the pageless want! They turned Roma, who tried to turn the school, and now you two are preparing to go fisticuffs!" Mika pulled out a stack of post it notes and started to scribble on it with a pen. The sprinkler system was fierce, and the sticky notes were barely holding together. The ink ran off as fast as Mika put it on. "I don't know what your teachers or the minister is going to do about your behavior. But..." In a flash, two soggy clumps of post-it notes were stuck onto Lupin and Suzuya's foreheads. "There we go, a week of appointments for some counselling. I hope you don't have any after school plans. However!" Again, Mika pointed at the heavens. "If you girls can show me that you can still respect your fellow classmate. Say, with a hug. Then maybe I'll wave the whole thing."

Off in the corner of the room, Silvia sat under a plastic table to avoid getting rained on. Though that hadn't prevented her from getting blasted while trying to pile up the debris. She looked like a wet rat, shivering as the water dripped off of her elbows and nose.

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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by The 42nd Gecko
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Lilac returned to the scene, ready to lend what aid she could, much around the same time that Merlin arrived the first time and... blinked in surprise

“Ahhh….what’s become of my school?" the Grand Minister said with a smile.

Why was she smiling? Everything felt okay now... but was this a happy occasion? Maybe she was just putting on a brave face. With the calming aura descending on everything, Lilac pushed it out of her mind. Maybe someone would still need help.

The Grand Minister continued for awhile, saying things were ok now, and things started to make sense... Thoughts potentially asking why the Grand Minister hadn't helped and showed up only after were brushed away by the lyrical tones. Celebration? Oh yeah, she was planning a sleepover too, something to forget all this...

"...Are you kidding me? No, no. You've got to be kidding me." Lupin growled. "That bitch led us to an attempted reverse-ambush, tried to trap us as she trashed your school, hurt your students, and BOTH of you still want to be sunshine and rainbows to her?!" Her gaze snapped between Merlin and Rose, then remained at the former. "Do you even have a way to fix everyone's grimores she's tainted?! How do we even know she won't try and pull something like this again?!"

And then Lupin's words shocked Lilac out of her comfortable daze and filled her heads with all sorts of uncomfortable thoughts. She started thinking back on what Merlin had said with a more skeptical eye and... "What?" Everything suddenly stopped making sense.

Lilac was too slow to process what was going on to step in between the fight between Lupin and Burning Heart. Surely.. Surely the teachers and the Grand Minister herself wouldn't let them fight right in the middle of them? Even if Tesni and the... Nessie! Nessie was the name, wasn't it? Were kinda for it.

Oh, good, soggy post it notes, Mika had resolved the situation. Lilac breathed a sigh of relief. Perhaps the rapid stress shifts up and down was impairing Lilac's judgement because she seemed content to call it there.

There was sweet. And then there was sickly sweet. If Merlin wanted to still extend an olive branch to Roma like Olivia had, sure, that'd make sense. That was a thing a Magical Girl would do. But to not recognize anything was wrong? To act like none of the damage meant anything? To spare not a thought for how everyone who was hurt or who watched others get hurt... Lilac looked between Dynasty Queen and Merlin.

Lilac still thought Dynasty Queen was wrong for endangering fellow magical girls. That was ironclad. But Lilac hadn't raised a public fuss for one reason. No one had helped Dynasty Queen. If you can't offer a solution, don't complain about someone else trying. If Lilac had been strong enough to help her side by side, but Dynasty Queen still did what she did, maybe it would have been time for harsh words. But she hadn't. And everyone else hadn't either. Camelot would have been strong enough to help. If she was just strong like Camelot...

Lilac shook her head, and her train of thought returned back to the station. What Dynasty Queen had done was wrong... But somehow with just words Merlin had made herself look even worse. Dynasty Queen... No, Tesni, felt like a normal person that just had the powers of a magical girl. There was no appeal to be something greater, to hold herself to a higher moral standard. But still a person, a human trying to take a logical path in a black and gray world. But Merlin? What the fuck world was she from that she thought walking into this situation and acting like that was appropriate? She didn't act like a human with basic empathy. She was acting like the storybook villainous being from another dimension that didn't understand human emotions!

Lilac realized she had been staying stuck in her head for too long, and sought out some action

Lilac did recognize a little unfinished business, and approached Silvia, kneeling down under the table, likewise wet, though, somehow the magic of a Magical Girl managed to keep her white clothes from being see through. "Um, hello. I'm sorry for worrying you earlier! I really am alright, thank you for asking, I just needed a little time to collect myself. Um, I'm afraid I don't know your name? I apologize that I only know your magical girl name. Stripes is, ah, an easy to remember one." Lilac looked a little bashful. "But I'm trying to get to know everyone better, I'm planning a sleepover? If you'd like to come."

-- Back to letter writing --

Bonnie was practically skipping with glee as she pranced around her room in her pajamas, reading Olivia's letter, it was a yes! So much so that she could almost ignore that it was going to be held in a haunted room! Why did it have to be there... Oh well, that's just how it'd have to be.

Dear Olivia,

That sounds wonderful! I'm planning to write some more invitations, but if you'd like to take care of the location, that'd be fine! I plan to invite Suzuya, Silvia, Nessie,

Bonnie paused. Took a deep breath, and continued. Yeah, she was still going to invite Tesni. Things couldn't end like that.

Tesni, Celina, and Mika as a chaperone. If you have anyone else you'd like to invite, go right ahead!

Bonnie paused again, this time a fear of the unknown rather than her own failings. A quick flip of the pen, and she continued once more.

P.S. If Wilhemina is still around please invite her too! I don't know where she is, did she go on a mission?

Oops! She had put the P.S. too soon. Bonnie bit her lip.

Looking forward to get to know you better,

With that out of the way there were so many other letters to write.. Maybe she should do the hardest one first?

Dear Tesni,

I want to apologize. I thought I'd just be holding you back. I thought it'd be better if I just helped others. But those were just excuses I told myself. I didn't realize how it'd make you feel when I left you to fight alone. I told myself someone else stronger would step up to help you, but no one did, and I was there. I should have done something, or tried harder, or thought about how leaving without a word would make you feel. Please, forgive me.

I know it's a shabby peace offering, especially since it comes with an admission of eavesdropping, but, I'm planning a sleepover and I think I heard you talking with Mika you wanted to make more friends? I can't guarantee it'll go well, but if you'd like to come, I'd like to have you there. Maybe if we have a chance to interact without a big fight against the Pageless, it'll help.

I'm Sorry,

Bonnie breathed out slowly. That one was a bit exhausting. At least bedtime was just around the corner.

Dear Suzuya,

Hello, I know we haven't spoken much since Camelot got sent on that mission and our team kinda fella apart. I still remember you fondly, and I was hoping the end of that team won't be the end of our relationship.

I'm planning a sleepover with a bunch of the other new students here, and was wondering if you wanted to come? I know things have been tense with us, a lot of us fighting with each other, but I'm hoping we can come to a common ground.

Hoping to get to know you better,

Even one she thought was going to be easy had more difficulty than she thought. It seemed like everyone had been fighting these days, and she didn't know what to think about Burning Heart and Lupin's fight.

Dear Mika,

Hello, I'm planning a sleepover with some of the other students, and was hoping maybe you could spare a clone to play chaperone? Some of the girls I'm inviting have been at, shall we say, odds with each other lately? And I was thinking it wouldn't be bad to have a teacher on hand.

Thank you for your time,

Ok, halfway there!

Dear Nessie,

Hello, I'm Bonnie/Lilac Shimmer, I was there when you found your Grimoire, and I've seen you at Val's class. I'm throwing a Sleepover for some of the newer students and magical girls, and was wondering if you'd like to come. I've been wanting to make your acquittance a little more than in passing as we battle Pageless or meet at classes.

Hoping to get to know you.

Bonnie wasn't sure if she was getting tired and couldn't put as much energy into Nessie's or if she just didn't know her well enough to say yet.

Dear Celina,

Hello, I'm Bonnie/Lilac Shimmer, I saw you at Val's class. I'm throwing a sleepover and I was wondering if you'd like to come. I'm hoping we can all make some friends and maybe loose some enemies. I know tensions have been high lately and I'm hoping we can ease a little stress.

Hoping to get to know you.

Silvia letter - On hold cause I think it's likely for Bonnie to get new things to say after their current meeting.

Bonnie then crept out into the hallway to deliver her letters quietly before heading to bed.
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Hidden 4 mos ago 4 mos ago Post by FrogRFlowR
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FrogRFlowR Elder Frog

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"Valeria asked that of you? Hmm... I would have thought you would have preffered to be at the school. I trust in Miss Weizenbaum abilities, but this worries me nonetheless."

Maria said just as she was adjusting her gown's sleeves at the wrists, the dusty remains of the Apex pageless still evaporating behind her. "Yell at you? Please, Lady Clementine, I believe I do not strike as the type or at least hope I do not. Although, it is true I find your course of action to have been... rash, perhaps even unprepared? To say the least."

It was not long after they left the ruins of the mall behind them as Maria accepted Ozma's offer to ride with her. The trip was short back to the Academy, although quite uncomfortable for Maria, who was not used to flying on brooms...
Maria witnessed the same sight as Ozma did, internally wishing she could have had been here to help, but also wondering if it truly would have been for the best. Finally spotting Valeria, who carried Roma, Maria took a step towards them but was stopped by the Crimson Comet who, with a serious glance, told the teacher to help the students. Now, Maria truly did wish to see if Valeria was fine and also have a talk with this Tsubasa, but Ozma was right. "Very well."

Maria turned around, fully intending to thoroughly ignore the Grand Minister and leave that business to Ozma and Valeria while helping the students - but she couldn't take a step before young Nessie came almost tackling her into a hug.

"Oh!" A surprised Maria looked down to the red head and gave the feintest smile, both hands lowering on her shoulders. "Miss Burns, how awfully kind of you. I merely remained behind to make sure you all could retreat to safety - there is no need to worry about all of that now. Are your classmates saf--"

As she looked down to Nessie, it suddenly washed on Maria just how much the student was filled with anger and indignation. Most of the students were, she reckoned. There was a small silence before she went on, carefully replacing Nessie's messy hairs with a motherly look;

"Do not fall too quickly into anger and evil thoughts, Nessie. Lest you end up being controlled by your darkest feelings, as Miss Tsubasa is. Energy spent on anger is wasted when so many people need our help, is that not so? Come, let us see to the others."

As she pushed Nessie forward, intending to go assist the help effort and whoever still needed help, despite what she just said Maria still sneaked on glare back at Ozma, Valeria, their prisoner and the Grand Minister - a hint of hellish red in her eyes sparkled for a mere second.
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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by TheWendil
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TheWendil The Wendil-Sama™ / ಠ_ಠ

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Escorting the most dangerous Magical Girl through the ruined academy invoked a lot of feelings in Valeria. She settled on appearing firm and resolute as the villain was taken to be held in the dungeons. "Do you ever not speak in confusing riddles!? Wie nervig!" Valeria swore in German and pressed the confusing mage along. She could not even begin to understand her and her lofty plans for all Magical Girls. She wanted the simple things in her life to remain there, to have her powers work and her world to resemble the tools and constructs she made. Simple and elegant.

This led to make Valeria very shocked when the Minister announced she was happy that Roma had been returned to her. She had never gotten along with the Grand Minister, seeing her as too eager to ignore dangers and put their Magical Girls at risk. She nearly wished to say something but held back for the sake of unity. The students were on edge enough, teachers arguing with the staff wouldn't help matters. Increasingly she became annoyed at how more involved she's getting in the Ministry's business but determined it is for the best for now if villains like Moonlight are around and active. The students were able to calm themselves, thanks to the new faculty member, Mika. At least Valeria thought she was new, as she hadn't yet seen her before. She'd have to introduce herself after this was over.

Her companion was a little quieter; in fact, Ozma hadn’t said much of a word since the Grand Minister appeared. The calming presence that stirred and picked at even her own heart was so typical and like the school’s leader, Merlin’s innate gifts often feeling like actual magic sometimes and not by the facet of a Grimoire. Case in point, she put to ease the initial suffering of Roma’s victims, lulling them to a blissful sleep ready for Eins and her treatment.

Still, Ozma wished she could say she was surprised by the Grand Minister’s persona but she wasn’t. The other girl sometimes, often times, felt truly bizarre and alien compared to the students she doted on. There was something almost inhuman about the way she spoke and carried herself, let alone the words of content she actually gave. As expected, students and teachers alike were baffled and outraged by her decision to greet Roma like a long-lost child, even if it were true in the technical sense.

So much so that students even took it upon themselves to act, Lupin’s attack only intercepted by Burning Heart’s counter. But Ozma half-suspected the Grand Minister was never in any real danger; indeed, she saw her reaction to the corrupted Magical Girl before her. The Grand Minister stared back at Roma, an expression devoid of much else but patterned acknowledgement before she gave the girl a light smirk as if she knew the attempt on the traitor’s life was inevitable; so too it was its inevitable prevention from Burning Heart and Oros.

Ozma saw all she needed to see, moving now. She briefly caught Silvia’s eye, the usually apathetic girl suddenly looking more dour than usual. She wondered what that was about but frankly, had no time to appeal to the students when this Bhakti debacle was at play.

“That’s enough,” she said, her voice suddenly amplified for the entire room to hear. A finger traced a red rune in the air that hovered near her lips. “We all know Roma is responsible for the infected Grimoires today, but I think we’re all forgetting she’s also the only one who knows how to reverse the process. Killing her would invalidate any way of curing the victims.” She cast a light but understanding glare at Lupin and Tesni.

Heavy drops of water soaked her costume, the brim witch’s hat lopsided from the sprinklers. But even so, her eyes glinted like red points of warmth as she acknowledged the gathered girls. “Until we find a way to cure the victims, Roma Bhakti will remain imprisoned in the school. While today shows Marrywell isn’t the safest place in the world, it does remain the most secure prison for Magical Girls. The staff will decide her fate after we’ve seen her damage undone.”

The Crimson Comet finished her announcement, the promise of punishment acceptable for most students and teachers. Still, if Roma was intent on shaking Marrywell’s body she succeeded. All the same, even her actions weren’t as unnerving to her as the Grand Minister’s complacency with the turn of events.

All of that was indication for Valeria to finally escort Roma away from public eyes and into the school's holding grounds. She nudged the girl with occasional German curses and a quick mutter of, "So about that kiss...." to Ozma before the two were out of the scene. Ozma followed but not before passing Maria a quick word to keep an eye on the students. And not without noticing the Grand Minister was still smiling even after all this either. Be it to herself or something unseen, Ozma didn't know and didn't want to ponder on right now anyway.

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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by Ponn
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As Olivia listened to the Grand Minister’s words, she felt a soothing calmness wash over her. Merlin may have looked fairly ordinary, as far as Magical Girls went, but the sound of her voice, the aura of her very presence… was extraordinary…

My goodness… She certainly has a way with words… the azure-clad beauty reflected as she closed her eyes and allowed the Grand Minister's serene reassurances to fill her heart.

Unfortunately, not everyone shared Olivia’s contentment, and the Ethereal Rose gasped in shock as she heard the infuriated wolf girl (Lupin, wasn’t it?) bark out a harsh rant, before darting toward the captive Tsubasa with a knife in one clenched fist. However, in the blink of an eye, a golden blur raced to block her path. “Suzuya!” Olivia cried in alarm, even as the fox girl’s flaming tails set off the emergency sprinklers, dousing everyone in a torrent of water.

I suppose that is one way to defuse a tense situation…” the blonde beauty noted as she hugged her shivering body. A moment later, the deluge diminished as a massive wing was placed over her. “Oh! Thank you, darling!” Olivia said as she smiled up at her eldritch consort. Now that she had a moment, the fairest of maidens noticed that one of Xolys’s elongated limbs had been poised to halt Lupin’s enraged charge if the young woman hadn’t come to a stop of her own volition. I really shouldn’t have worried, Olivia reflected. Darling Xolys always has everything under control!

And speaking of having things under control, it was about then that a young woman who Olivia was faintly aware was Marrywell’s student councilor stepped in to further deescalate the standoff between Lupin and Burning Heart. The dark-haired young woman gave the two students an ultimatum: either spend a week in after-school counseling, or give each other a hug. As far as Olivia was concerned, a big hug always felt nice, and was definitely the better of the two options. After all, Lupin’s anger had been directed at Tsubasa, not Suzuya. This whole situation was merely the result of tempers flaring out of control, and so a little calmness and friendly conversation would obviously do a world of good. Ozma seemed to think so as well, and imparted a few placating words of her own to the gathered students and faculty. Yes, everything thankfully seemed to be winding down. The only real concern now was how to dry everyone off…

As it happened, Xolys once again had matters well in hand, the Master of Xhar’doth combining the heat of his eldritch flames and the wind generated by several rapidly spinning tendrils to form an array of massive, makeshift blow dryers. Once everyone was fully dried off, both eldritch beast and enchanting beauty returned to their dorm room. Olivia was so engrossed in reading her letter from Bonnie that she didn’t even notice Suzuya’s arrival, or the girl’s anguished state.

“And yet, it needed to be said,” Xolys’s calm voice told her from where the now substantially smaller beast stood on the far side of the room. “You should not regret having the courage to do so.”

“Oh! Suzuya!” Olivia exclaimed in happy surprise upon being addressed by her still-nervous roommate. “Of course there’s room for you!” the blonde beauty added with a melodic giggle. “Bonnie wants to invite as many people as we can! And can you believe she was thoughtful enough to send me a real, handwritten letter to ask about it?! It’s the first time I’ve ever received a letter that wasn’t an insult!” the azure-clad maiden gushed. “I’ll cherish this for the rest of my life! Oh! But there’s no time to waste! I need to write a letter back to her!”

“Look, Suzuya!” Olivia practically squealed with delight, as she watched two folded pieces of paper be slipped under their door a few hours later. “Another letter from Bonnie! And there’s one for you as well!” she added, while enthusiastically handing her roommate the letter in question. “Isn’t this so exciting?!” she asked. “I wonder what she has to say!”

Opening the letter, Olivia quickly read through its contents.

“Oh, wow! She said I get to pick the location!” the Ethereal Rose announced gleefully. “I must admit, I was a little worried she might not want to have it in a potentially haunted classroom, so I’m really glad she said yes!”

However, her jubilation dimmed slightly a moment later, when she read the part about Wilhelmina. Despite her desire to befriend the maritime maiden, Olivia had seen less and less of the nautical-themed Magical Girl, and it seemed as if she was always attending classes on the far side of the campus, or away on some important mission, much like Chinami. Although the blonde beauty would definitely send her an invitation, she sadly doubted it would meet with any success…

Still, at least Suzuya would be there, giving her even more time to bond with her somewhat timid roommate, and speaking of bonding…

“Um, Suzuya? I was thinking, if you’re not busy with counseling, would you like to spend one of our days off exploring the city? I’ve always found London to be simply fascinating, and I thought it would be so much fun to go sightseeing without the threat of a Pageless battle getting in the way. Does that sound like something you’d like to do?”
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Hidden 4 mos ago Post by Lonewolf685
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Lonewolf685 Inquisitive and Immortal

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Roma Bhakti

Truly Roma was blessed to have returned to Merrywell under Valeria's care, for she found nothing more then an affirmation of her beliefs and radiated a dignified as the rabbit eared Magical Girl was led to her cell. Cute though it was to see her captor flirt so shamelessly with the Murderer, what caught her attention more was how Ozma seemed conflicted by the Minister's grand address.

When the door shut she turned to face them, hoping to offer the Murderer a moment of reconsiliation even if atonement was forever beyond Ozma.

"Perhaps you are beginning to see the nature of the beast who holds you all in her thrall. If the blatant example of emotion and consiousness suppression was not enough, she openly admits her desires for all and sundry to hear. I would call it arrogance but it has proven a well founded belief in her untouchable nature."

Her eyes shifted between them before closing, hands reaching to the bars as though physically imploring them with the emotion she couldn't convey. "If I had proven the monster you think me and killed Magical Girls this day, do you believe she would have treated me with any less warmth?"

"No. She'd have embraced me all the same. She...has but one goal. A goal she's already succeeded in, and only cares to keep ahold of. The complete control of all Magical Girls. It matters not who dies so long as those who remain....are hers alone."

Suzuya Kuzunoha

Suzuya had never regretted coming to England more then the day she'd just endured, and she'd already seen what they called 'pub fare' food. The idea of striking a teacher had never even occured to her in her old school life, and her Grimoire was sorely tempted to encourage it.

Tempted, but neither were ready to step into the wrong like that. They were being wronged by the teacher, treated like a marauding brute for intervening between an assault on an unarmed person with open hands and firm words, all the while the same teacher was seemingly consoling a girl who attempted to kill an injured Magical Girl just to get an edge over Tsubasa.

So they'd swallowed their revulsion, hugged a bloodthirsty wolf, and left without a word to the counselor.

Suzuya's only relief came from her dorm, the still transformed fox girl finding a ray of sunshine and her reliable paramour relaxed without a care in the world. Letters came, went, and came again with one even for Suzuya. Carefully prying open the envelope so as not to rip it, already planning to keep both parcel and packaging, she found Bonnie's words uplifting. The longing for connection in those words brought a smile of understanding to her lips even if she'd already planned on going.

Her ears perked up, twinned radar dishes directed to Olivia and almost seemed to glow- No, they were clearly glowing even as Suzuya's face remained perfectly relaxed. The joys of emotional control via magic were not to be understated in avoiding typical maidenly embarrassment.

"That sounds lovely. And I presume Xolys shall be our chaperone? I seem to recall one of the other girls talking about Pizza before we left this morning. We should see what the city can offer of it!"
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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Majoras End
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Majoras End Oyasumi~

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A wall of fire caused her to stumble into Suzuya. The wolf's eyes widened. "ARE YOU NUTS?!"

Lupin tried to struggle out of her grasp then, when they colided. Only half-heartedly paying attention to everything else. God, why did so many thing happen at once like some constant domino effect? Or more importantly, was it not in her nature to have better senses to process this fresh hell? Or was it Celina having a hard time right now? Sure, go ahead, lock the bitch up. Not like she'll squawk unless they did something despicable.

They're probably going to try and redeem her regardless of if she can reverse this hell. What doormats... Lupin mentally rolled her eyes, barely phased by the sprinklers. At least, until the school counselor apparently reprimanded both her and Suzuya. "Wait-" She faintly flinched at the contact of a wet post-it note against her forehead. A week of counseling unless they hugged it out?? "Wait wait wait, why are you-"

The wolf was interrupted again when the fox begrudgingly hugged her, and left without another word. The final nail in the coffin, so to speak. And yet as she stood there dumbfounded by, well, everything, maybe she could pry someone else out of their proverbial coffin.

"Fuckin'...Ma'am, wait!" Celina spoke up to Mika, maybe before she left. "Don't drag 'er into this, she was just trying to," She groaned. "make sure...I don't do something stupid. Go ahead and drag me to your office, I probably need it, but could you throw 'er a bone? Atleast once?" She frowned.

Regardless of Oros' answer, Celina would spot Silvia hiding under one of the tables. After a moment of concideration, she walked up next to the table and, kneeling down to her level, quickly untransformed and covered the apathetic girl with her jacket.

"Come on, you look like hell..." Celina softly offered to help her back to her dorm. Hopefully Silvia wouldn't get sick from the artifical rain.

Besides, the blonde herself should probably go take a shower before she started smelling like wet dog.




Back at her dorm, dried and getting ready to pass out soon as she collapsed onto her bed, Celina picked up the letter that was slipped under the door. Someone invited her to a sleepover, huh? She didn't know how the others would react to her being there, after her uncharacteristic outburst earlier. Maybe they'll have food? Celina snorted to herself. She could probably use that as a bullshit excuse.

Ah well, she'll decided in the morning.
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Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by BrokenPromise
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BrokenPromise Cuter than you

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@Lonewolf685@Majoras End

"Thank you, Suzy." Mika did not seem bothered that Suzuya was walking away from her, and would soon be out of earshot. "That couldn't have been easy, and I appreciate you giving Cell a chance, even if she didn't take it."

Lupin didn't have to chase Mika very far. She hadn't moved a single step since their confrontation. "I see listening is not your strong suit. I would have expected otherwise given the size of your ears." Mika pinched the bridge of her nose. When she lowered her hand, she was wearing a pained smile. "Tell you what? No one is thinking straight right now. Go apologize to Suzy before the day is over. Then we can put this event behind us." It was unusual that Lupin came around so quickly, but Mika wouldn't complain.

Anyone could have seen that Suzuya did nothing wrong. The issue more had to do with how schools operate. Teachers and student counselors are not police officers. Nor are they judges, juries, or executioners. Their jobs are hard enough when everyone behaves, and many do not have the ability or desire to properly deal with infighting among students. This becomes even more difficult when you involve the parents who will often be unhappy regardless of what you do. This is why most schools have a zero-tolerance policy regarding "bullying." All aggressive behavior is punished equally. In an idealistic world, this would encourage everyone to be their best self.

Suzuya may not have directly interfered with Lupin, but her confrontational language and choice to start a fire would warrant intervention from anyone. This was ultimately a matter for the faculty to handle, and a student involving themselves just complicated things. If anything, both students should be relieved Mika was going so easy on them. This would have been a detention at any other school.

As for why Mika was so easy on Tesni, that was anyone's guess. How Tesni conducted herself during an emergency was more an issue for the grand minister or her teacher.


The student counselor nearly jumped out of her skin when Ozma boomed her voice through the room. She pretended to clean her ear with her pinky while the non-faculty told everyone what was going to happen. "Excuse me? we haven't even looked at the hexes in question. Moreover, where do you get off-" Her eyes drifted onto Merlin before she clinched her teeth. "Never mind, as you were." She waved her hand dismissively.


She walked over to Eins and wrapped a hand around her shoulders. "It's a bit crowded here. How about we go to my office and hammer out some ideas. Sound good to you, Strudel?"

Mika chose to ignore the eldrich blow-dryer. That wasn't to say the gesture wasn't appreciated. Fresh air was nice, as was having dry hair. But they were departing, so Mika would have to thank them later.

@The 42nd Gecko

Bonnie set out to slip the letters under everyone's doors. As soon as she entered the hallway, she spotted Mika. She stood there with a smile on her face.

"Oh! Is there one there for me?" She wiggled her fingers before slipping her letter out of the stack. It wasn't clear how she had noticed since it was buried. "You know, you did well earlier." She peeled open the envelope and scanned the letter before chuckling. "You have very nice handwriting. I would love to help out with this." She walked back towards her office without looking away from the letter. "Very nice handwriting. Almost like calligraphy."

@The 42nd Gecko

Silvia was a little surprised to see Bonnie skootching under the table with her. Part of this was because she appeared shell shocked seconds ago. Now she had her composure back. Equally surprising was Bonnie choosing to walk through several sprinklers just to get to her. That couldn't have been comfortable, and Silvia wasn't feeling too hot either. There was something about being wet, shivering, and squatting under a table that made her feel undignified. She felt a bit like a clown gazing out of a sewer drain at a kid who lost his paper boat. But the "Kid" had joined her under the table. Bad move, Georgie.

"...You sure you're okay?" Her tone was filled with concern. Though it wasn't clear which of the two girls the concern was intended for. "I'm Silvia. But if it's easier to call me Stripes, that's cool." Bonnie had asked Silvia about going to a sleepover in the same breath she asked her name, but she chose not to answer.

Anyone who knew the introverted misanthropist wouldn't bother to even invite her. It wasn't really her thing. She hated crowds as a rule, and had an idea the more social students would be all over this. That and the idea of of her classmates parading around in their pajamas didn't rub her the right way. It felt juvenile.

But she couldn't say no either. Silvia wasn't able to remember the last time she had been invited to anything. She knew Bonnie was being polite because Silvia had asked how she was doing. But even knowing that, this was still a rare occurrence. She wasn't going to force Bonnie's hand however. It seemed silly to sign herself up for something that was just a formality and-

@Majoras End

A jacket flew under the table and landed on Silvia's shoulders.

"O-oh." Her eyes darted between Celina and Bonnie. She didn't like groups but kindness like this was nice. Nice, but it made her feel self conscious. "I don't think I look that bad, do I?" She avoided looking at either girl and played with the end of her hair. Were they just concerned for her? "I'm fine guys, r-really. Bonnie was fighting Roma directly. She deserves your concern more than I do." A warm, eldritch wind blew through the ruined cafeteria and warmed everyone up. This caused Silvia's head to snap over, though she noticed Xolys was doing this for everyone and not just herself. The attention of three different people would have been way too much. "Xolys has the right idea. He's helping everyone." Silvia stood up, bumped her head on the table, but still managed to stumble out into the open. "Weren't you going to beat someone up or something? I'm glad you calmed down." She rubbed her head while looking at Celina. "Do I still look bad? I pride myself on my appearance." Silvia ran a hand through her hair. "I'll go look in the mirror in my room."

That night...

Silvia was a pretty light sleeper. Something slid under her door.

There was just enough moonlight to see an envelope. She crawled over the sheets and reached for it. It didn't seem like recovering the letter from her bed was possible, so she transformed. Then she used her staff to trap the envelope and slide it closer to her bed. With a sigh, she picked up the letter. She turned it over in her hand, unsure of why something would have been given to her. Though after opening it and seeing the hand written letter in side, Silvia didn't even have to read to know who sent it.

"Guess I'm going."

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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by McFazzer
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“Curing the victims. Great if that can happen, but I don’t know if Miss Enigmatic is the kinda radical to even have a ‘cure’ for the poison they concoct… well her being imprisoned for all eternity, I know enough about that I think.” mumbling to herself, Tesni wandered off back to her room needing a shower, if only to wash away the accusatory looks.


After the brief bombast of fighting Roma and what she could only call the resulting shitshow, Tesni just felt exhausted. The hot shower relieving her aching body but doing nothing for her thoughts. Picking up the letter that had been slipped under the door.

“That little sneak… she’s lucky that sincerity goes a long way with me.” Tesni grinned at it before stuffing it in her jacket pocket as she left to stop at one place to get the bad mood out of her system before joining the party.


Rubbing her face as if it would somehow relieve the feeling, she found herself back at scene of her crime long after everyone else had left and the moon high in the sky. Picking her way through the rubble she played the fight back in her head. She had acted on instinct and had caused all this damage… yet another reason why she refused to use her magical girl name and avoided calling others by theirs, even as Bonnie had protested her use of nicknames. Names were important. The ‘magical’ name bestowed upon them? Tesni couldn’t help but feel that was a mask. And if she bought into that ‘mask’, she could handwave all this as not her work. As if psychologically saying that it was Dynasty Queen's fault. So she always kept in mind that she did this. That Tesni did this, not ‘Dynasty Queen’.

“No dodging responsibility. Not for anyone. Actions have consequences, both good and bad.” The fight played out again in her mind and in her minds eye the building crumbled once more. The prone girl was saved once again. Standing in the spot where her staff had carved a gash into the earth where that girl had been, Tesni frowned. Roma had caused Tesni’s ‘responsibility’ to stop at mere property damage.

“Hmph… strange. I guess I had more faith in Miss Enigmatic’s words than I thought.” Recalling her say in their previous meeting how she wasn’t the enemy of magical girls. Tesni on some level trusting that to be true to the point she truly ignored the consequences of her attacks.

“It sure sucks that she’s making me think about this at all. The ‘consequence’ for her ‘good’ action I suppose? Well, I guess she can be both ‘right’ and deserving of her head smashed in for doing all this in the first place. Both can be true… I wonder if she’ll actually give answers or just be annoying.” Throwing a piece of rubble onto the pile Tesni strolled away.

“I guess I should ‘reward’ her for saving that girl at some point… but I do have a party to get to” Those words hanging in the empty night sky, Tesni looked at the invitation in her hand and walked towards Bonnie’s for a sleepover.
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Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by Lonewolf685
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Chinami Nadakai

[1 week before the Marrywell Incursion]

“So. That all aside, let’s get to the real question for tonight. How long are you going to pretend your magic isn’t bothering you?"

She... Admittedly, it was hard not to like Charlotte sometimes. She had charisma, a natural capacity for connecting with people that Chinami could only envy. If she just weren't who she was... If she weren't seemingly honor-bound as a creature of the Grand Minister to keep their secrets... Maybe she could have connected with her the way her peers seemed to... Maybe she could have truly trusted her. So, Charlotte's words of sympathy were a cold comfort. It was hard to believe that the Grand Minister truly held all the power in all too many situations, and yet... she couldn't help but wonder at times if Ozma really was in a similar boat as the rest of them.

It was just the two of them and hushed tones that could have been masked by the excitement and battle below. It was probably as close to a private conversation as she could ever dream of having with the Crimson Comet before the latter impulsively made herself scarce again. There were so many things she'd wanted to say then. So many questions that had been brewing inside her for so long. And right then, she just had a feeling, would have been the time to get them answered.

Regardless, it seemed fate had other plans.

She had taken too long. Her parched throat made talking... irritable. She had wanted to choose her words carefully, not just for her throat but for the sake of directing the conversation in a manner that hopefully would forestall any vague redirections on Ozma's part. Even so, she took... too long. Other Magical Girls were now filtering into the area. A new teacher called in from overseas to replace Lucette?! That was news to her! A wolf-girl caused a notable ruckus and seemed to fully take whatever remained of Ozma's attention, as they were both swarmed by other spectators. Her opportunity... was wasted.

Eins -Drossel- was a familiar presence, wielder of the Nutcracker and capable of "Tuning" Grimoires. Honestly, Chinami couldn't help but be wary of that. She'd consulted Eins before on the stagnation she'd begun experiencing a year ago. It had been then that she realized the state of her Grimoire, knew it was overworked. Even so, despite having a potential quick-fix in front of her, she had rejected it. She had taken Eins's words of warning seriously and not pushed her luck. In the end, the only reason she'd have wanted her Grimoire treated was so that she could keep pushing it for more in her training. So, she had decided the better part of valor was to accept the consequences of her actions and allow her Grimoire to recover naturally. Besides which, she couldn't help her skin crawling at the idea of someone else doing something to her Grimoire. There was too much that could go wrong. Even now, burning up from within... she couldn't bring herself to reach out. It was the rational thing to do, right? If nothing else, she could at least have dispelled the mystery of the burning, confirmed or denied what was happening inside her... But she didn't.

What little enthusiasm she had worked up for the day drained out of her, leaving only the nearly unbearable flame within, as Chinami grunted and retrieved her jacket and water bottles, leaving without a word. She wasn't going to find any answers or solutions here... nor in Marrywell as a whole, she suspected. But since when hadn't that been the case?

If only she'd... had more time, had managed to get her questions answered, her concerns addressed...

Maybe if she had... what happened next would not have come to pass.

Chinami did not sleep well. Rather, she did not sleep at all. The fire inside her made the idea of a peaceful slumber a pipe dream. And worse, the Scabbard's healing trickle was working in concert with the burning to eliminate her fatigue chemicals. But not all of them, clearly, just enough to keep her edged out over the flame within, just enough to keep her from feeling rested at all. Eventually, she had given it up as a lost cause and left her and Bonnie's dorm. The least she could do was not turn their sleeping quarters into a sauna... so at least one of them would be sleeping well tonight.

Instead, Chinami found herself almost aimlessly browsing the academy library. She had questions burning into her mind as much as the flame in her chest overheated her body, inquiries that had time and again been foiled from being answered. But... admittedly, it had been a while since she did any investigating, over a year since she last took a long hard look at the state of things. She was a little older now, a little wiser she liked to think. There were terms and context that she was privy to now that she'd not had back then, clues to the puzzle. It wasn't that the pieces simply weren't there (although that certainly contributed); it was that she just didn't know where to look for them. Now was different... at least a little. Book after book came and went, regarding the history of the Magical Girls and their eternal enemies, the Pageless, but Chinami's eyes could barely keep from glazing over the contents. However, a pattern was beginning to rise.

Pageless research was the usual propaganda. They were "the shadows of history and darkness in all stories", but what did that even mean?! Where did they physically come from?! What was the source?! The Pageless were endless and endlessly hungry, and that was seemingly all anyone knew! A never-ending foe that no-one seriously questioned! Why did they exist?! How did they exist?! Why did they seek to consume stories?! What did that provide them?! Sustenance? Pleasure?

The more she explored these questions and their derivatives, the more even her searing-hot Grimoire seemed to curdle in unease from the table beside her. She could understand why. They were not facing an honorable foe. Their enemy did not show their face. They did not lay claim to any lands. There was no castle, no fortress of evil to assault. There was no "Big Bad" to slay. There was no "Final Boss" to overcome to bring peace to all the lands. Hell, there weren't even "general" equivalents! The Apex Pageless just didn't make the cut.

The "victories" against the Pageless that she could count amounted to all of one:

The establishment of Marrywell Academy.

In a time before anyone could remember, existing for centuries, a training ground and safe haven for Magical Girls, an organization pitched as a beacon of morality, light and justice...

And they had done nothing ever since.

Oh sure, they had protected people, saved lives in the short term across the eras. But not once, not ever, had they achieved a great, lasting and consequential victory against the Pageless. Under that light, not even the creation of Marrywell itself was a victory. Magical Girls had been warring with darkness for centuries without any progress whatsoever. They had been doing so solely because it was "right" and "holy" and because the Grand Ministry had pointed them in the "right direction". They were loyal attack dogs... Policing the world, selfishly keeping magic and the knowledge of the danger of the Pageless sequestered from normal folk, quashing dissent and bringing "misguided" Magical Girls across the globe into the fold. It was...

It was pointless.

Where was she going to be in a century's time? In two? Three?

Assuming she didn't fall in battle.

She would live.

And she would still be fighting.

Fighting a battle that couldn't be won.

Chinami slumped back into her chair. This... this changed so much, right? Sure, she had thought the Grand Ministry was stagnating, but this was just too much! There was nothing! No research on what made the Pageless tick! Magical Girl history contained notable figures, grand feats of power, but events regarding the Pageless actually being driven back as a whole? No progress! She hadn't consciously acknowledged it before. Maybe she had just refused to acknowledge it before. Even after only being involved for a handful of years, she didn't want to accept that she had been doing nothing of worth except her own independent hero pursuits! She didn't sign up for endless war! Fucking hell, she didn't even choose to be a Magical Girl to begin with! How could they-?!

She choked back a spurt of smokey coughs, as her emotions flared, quickly fumbling to flood her throat with a gulp of water.

She closed the books and returned them to their proper places, moving to leave the library with barely restrained haste.

She needed... She needed to spread this knowledge, this conclusion... Who could she bring it to? Who else could see -was willing to see- through the facade?

Maybe Tesni? She seemed like the sort that might take it seriously. Even if they didn't always agree. Even if their patrol had been an unmitigated clusterfuck... Chinami needed every sympathetic ear she could get. Olivia was a... maybe. She was powerful but too innocent by half. There was no need to ruin this for her... not yet. Wilhelmina was a similar story, and...

Moonlight Tsubasa.

And she suspected the latter was already well aware.

Chinami ran a hand through her hair, grimacing at the beads of sweat. What did it say about her that the only person she felt she could seek for aid in the entirety of Marrywell was someone that she had almost come to violent blows with not more than a day ago? If she could just meet Moonlight Tsubasa again... then she could get some answers. If she could just get Tesni and Tsubasa to coexist peacefully... if she could just dispel that irrational hostility, then surely, she would have a pair of surprisingly reliable allies... right?

Sometimes... she really did regret not having more friends to choose from.

A flicker of light earned a grimace and glance out the hallway window. The sun was rising... and she'd not gotten a wink of sleep. And that reminded her... she needed to go host the Round Table feast, but... That would mean transforming... bringing back the flames that burned her alive... A shiver of fear wracked her body before she could stop herself. How... long was this going to go on? How long was her magic going to fuck with her like this?! She didn't have time for this! Not here! Not now! Why couldn't this have happened some-

The sound of power-walking turned her bleary gaze towards a student with a missive in hand. She knew it was a message for her, because it was shoved with unusual haste into her grasp, and then the deliverer made themselves scarce from her presence. What? Did she look that terrible right now? Well... Probably. Blinking, Chinami glanced down at the missive and blinked to clear her vision, her expression growing more downcast the more she read.

Does... the Grand Minister know what I just realized? Is she trying to distract me? Keep me out of the way? Even if-! Even if that were the case, shouldn't the so-called "All-Seeing Merlin" know what the hell is going on with me right now?! How am I supposed to fight like this?! And my people! I can't just go overseas like this! I-! Maybe the Grand Minister does know. Maybe... she wouldn't, right? She wouldn't send me into a fight she knew she couldn't win, right?

Chinami's teeth ground in fury. She was in no condition to do anything right now, much less fight! But... what choice did she have?

Swallowing, she retrieved her burner phone and made a call to Jonathan. She'd not be able to host feasts for a week. Emergency mission. Overseas. She'd be back as soon as possible...

Hopefully, she'd have found a solution to the burning by then...

Assuming she survived at all.

Folding the missive, she shoved it into her pocket, the words all but scorching into her mind.

Location: Okinawa, Okinawa Prefecture, Kyushu, Japan.
Target: Two Apex Pageless.
Mission Statement: The local rogue and stationed Magical Girls will face a foe they cannot overcome alone. Handle it.

This was going to suck.

[Two days before the Marrywell incursion]

Crossing the globe for a conversation might seem an excessive step to take in a modern era where cellphones where common place and Tsubasa would have no issue gaining Camelot's private number from her people but there was something to be said for a face to face dialogue. For one it provided a greater degree of expression and understanding. For another, it meant Roma was the one standing over a downed Chinami and not some stranger looking to take advantage of a foreigner passed out in the open.

"You should perhaps consider refusing such tasks in the future. The Grand Minister is not exactly subtle in her attempts to distance us." The transformed rabbit of the moon sighed, huffing on her pipe as she sat on a bench dotted along a cliffside walking path that offered a tranquil view of the ocean waves striking the rocky Japanese coast. The moon shone brightly overhead, a sickle cleaving the black of space that Tsubasa found captivating for it's sharpness. Beside her sat Camelot, her aches relieve and injuries restored to what they once were. Even the incessant burn was duller, muted by the scent of longing wafting from the rabbit's pipe.

"Had I not the means to return to my homeland so swiftly you might have come across it's more unsavory side, Chinami."

Blearily, Chinami's eyes (Eyes! Plural!) opened, as she found herself only able to muster the energy to stare at the stars. Shifting, the phantom sensation at her left resolved into the form of her reattatched (or perhaps regenerated?) arm rising up to briefly reach for the sky, before flopping back down onto the bench. She sort of felt like she should have had a crick in her neck from awakening this way, but after burning alive, she wasn't sure if the sensation of discomfort would ever be the same for her again. She... was whole... alive. She was a little surprised, but hardly disappointed. That would have been... What a way to go out, that would have been. Some part of her felt it would have been a worthy death, but there was far too much she had left to do, so many centuries ahead of her. As daunting as it as to consider the future, as a Magical Girl, like it or not, she had the promise of a long one. She would be a fool to waste it.

She honestly felt like she should have been... feeling more(?) at that moment. She'd nearly died last she was aware. Shouldn't she have been a lot more emotional? Perhaps. And yet... The fire within her seemed to have been... almost sated, lounging within her like a satisfied beast. She could no longer feel the flames withing consuming her entire existence. It felt like she had finally crossed a threshhold, like she had been broken down and reborn in flame. After even such an objectively short period of constant agony, she now felt she understood true peace. The flaming bulb in her stomach was now only a comforting thrumming warmth, hot as the sun and yet painless all the same. In a sense, if she were to have been reforged by the fire within, would it not be only natural that they threaten her no longer? She felt... satiated as a person in a way she hadn't known she'd so badly needed to be. To fight a worthy opponent, to not have to worry about collateral damage simply because there was no other choice? To be able to go all out and still only just scrape by? Finally, after these last couple years of training, it felt like it was worth it, like her martial talent was finally achieving what it was destined for.

Her head turned, regarding Moonlight Tsubasa with a wry smile. "Yes. I suppose..." she cleared her throat. It hadn't been long, but it felt like forever since she'd been able to speak without a rasp. "I suppose I should learn how to say 'no' when it matters..." She really didn't want to believe the Grand Minister had meant true harm, because what that would imply... for her and those like her, who had come to similar conclusions about the Grand Ministry... She wanted it to be paranoia, but she couldn't help but wonder... "To be honest, if I didn't know any better... I'd have thought the Grand Minister sent me here to die..." She favored the exotically-garbed Magical Girl with a genuine smile of gratitude. "Thank you, by the way... You probably saved my life."

"Think nothing of it. I may not be perceived well, nor do I deserve to be, but I do wish nothing but the best for all my fellow Magical Girls." Tsubasa replied, one ear twitching as she turned to favor Camelot with the fullness of her attention. "In truth I can not say if this was a sincere attempt on your life, or if she merely needs to put forth several high risk opportunities and space them out over the years. Lillian has no need for haste and can endure longer then most can consider raising their guards. Had you met your end here, though, I would imagine your book would have found it's way into the hands of a girl far less cautious then yourself, and they'd be swept away to Merrywell to start anew. No one would question it, for it has been the way of things as long as we have recorded our secret history."

Slowly she lowered her pipe and it dissolved into motes of golden light, the last of her smoke wafting away on a salty breeze that settled the soul. "I wished to tell you that aim to do battle this tyrant, and the war I wage shall not be clean. I have neither the allies, the power, or the time to do this without any harm done. I have roused the Pageless to London, and I intend to put them to use to unmask the hypocrisy of Lillian. I say this to you now, because while I shall surely bring great suffering, I will do everything in my power to ensure no one is devoured by my forces. You have my word...and I hope I can have your support."

Chinami's mood sobered somewhat, but admittedly, the sheer high of relief, of surviving, was keeping her from worrying overmuch on the Grand Minister's intentions. If this had been an indirect assassination attempt, it was nonetheless one she had survived, and she would be -she hoped she would be- more wary in the future. Tsubasa's words of war... of a war with the Grand Ministry further sobered her. As much as she didn't want to believe most of the Magical Girls would side with the Grand Minister even after Tsubasa supposedly pulled back the curtain of her nature, she knew that that would be a false hope. The Magical Girls would fight. It wouldn't be clean. "War is never clean," she couldn't help but utter. She didn't want to choose sides in this. She really didn't. She just wanted to use this power to save as many people as she could. She wanted to protect her fellow Magical Girls, to save them as well, just as she would any civilian.

If she sided with Tsubasa... she might be burning whatever bridges she had, whatever inroads and friendships she might have among the Magical Girl populace. It was unlikely people would understand what Tsubasa aimed to do. Tesni's hostility and Bonnie's blind trust in the former's instincts had proved that well enough. Even open to the possibilites, Chinami had little idea what Tsubasa wanted, not really. She knew she could control Pageless, on a massive scale even, if what the other girl was implying was true. She... needed to know more. Only a fool would agree to an alliance blindly. "I'd tell you to wait... but somehow, I don't get the sense that you have the luxury of time... What exactly is it... that you intend to do?" Chinami inquired quietly, propping her elbows up on the head of the bench.

Seeing that the Once and Future King of England was brimming with concern Roma held her hand aloft, the spine of a heavy book falling into it from thin air. It opened on its own, pages inked in vibrant colors and dark lines of a thick brush breezing past in a flutter before coming to the seeming end. Pages added after the fact, an addendum to the story of her very Grimoire, written with the very being of Pageless as her ink. She showed this to Chinami before closing the book and setting it upon the bench between them.

"You do not need to do a thing as of yet. What I shall do will be heinous, but I see no other way to escape the system of stagnation that Lillian so expertly created. I shall stage an attack upon Merrywell once sufficient number leave the grounds in order to hunt me, and I shall alter as many Grimoire's to be like mine as I can. In doing so I will have struck more Magical Girls in a single moment then the Pageless every have. At that point I shall either surrender to the first Magical Girl of suffucient strength and principle, or disappear into the sky If none are worthy. In doing so I shall create a crisis, and when the Minister is forced to act she shall prove me wrong by being the better person, or she shall condemn those I have afflicted with my gifts."

"To be blunt, I am positing that she will either kill or imprison the girls who hold the power of the Pageless. If she does, then I ask that you follow your consiousness and rise up. For I shall have throw myself upon the mercy of the masses, and shall expect none to be given. Were i to live, it would only be because of Lillian's obsessive need to control all Magical Girls even with my crimes."

There was a sense she got from her Grimoire, as she saw what had happened to Tsubasa's. The thrumming in her chest, the flames that felt only contentedly muted now seemed to hum at the sight... in interest? An addition to the story... written with Pageless essence. It seemed to explain so much and yet so little all the same. The nature of the Pageless was still steeped in mystery... but perhaps finally someone -anyone- was on the cusp of true answers.

She heard Tsubasa's words, and her lips pursed. Using innocents to make a point, especially if the bet was that they might be killed...? That didn't sit right with Chinami, not at all. Even if Tsubasa did have firm enough control to ensure they all survived becoming like her... could she guarantee they would be saved if the Grand Minister truly did act as she predicted? Personally, Chinami didn't think the Grand Minister would take the bait. As old and assumedly cunning as she was, that would be an easy way to turn even her most ardent supporters against her, right? Unless she could successfully demonize the afflicted... All things considered, given the fact that Magical Girls had been fighting a war without end... How understanding could Chinami really expect them to be to what were... Pageless hybrids? They were only human, after all. Still, if the worst came to pass...

"What is it like?" Chinami blurted out. "The Grimoire alteration, I mean..." Her brow furrowed, as she made a vague hadn gesture. "What is the process like? The state of being? The consequences?" She sighed. "I think I believe you that you don't want to kill anyone, or even harm them... but you're still willing to do it. To martyr yourself? For a greater good? Personally... I'm generally of the opinion..." She exhaled and looked to the stars. "If I ever sacrifice anything of anyone for anyone... it will only myself alone." She shook her head. "But, I guess I digress. How..." She glanced at Tsubasa's Grimoire again. "How does that work?"

Neither rejection nor acceptance, but curiosity instead. A reaction Roma could accept held wisdom, as even she did not particularly like what she planned to do. Once more she opened the book, letting it rest between them as she run her finger over the Pageless ink. "By their nature a Pageless consumes stories, just the same as we consume meats, plant, and minerals to sustains ourselves. I considered routes of domesticating Pageless, but first one had to overcome the hostility appearent between us Magical Girls and them. Eventually I came to the discovery and partial symbiosis. Using a Pageless to devour the very edge of an ending in our own narratives, and then inscribing a Pageless into a new one."

Beneath her nail were the words 'I AM RETURNED', and she stroked them with an almost affectionate manner if her transformed state could have ever conveyed such emotion. "My Grimoire ends with an alien leaving the Earth to return home to paradise. Just as easily I could have left the Ministry behind and made a home elsewhere. But I have chosen not to, and used a Pageless to carve that promise into my Grimoire. By overriding the theme and message you can change how the book itself tries to influence you, just a little. For example, if I Revised your book, as I call it, I would not be able to make you abandon holding your Dinners or suddenly decide to rut your own family members. You are still yourself. But the nature of the Pageless has your Grimoire attempt to push you to be more expressive. Less restrained. They have a very low level of group organization so boundaries we find common place make no sense to a pageless. I may not be able to make someone a thief but they may care less about property law and taxation, as it were."

"The process is painful. It can be far lesser should you welcome it, but the pain can't be avoided, nor should it. The Pageless is giving up its existence to be a part of your book and we should acknowledge that sacrifice however briefly we can." Steadily the hand pulled back and the book disappeared with it, Tsubasa rising to her feet with her robes not even ruffled from sitting on the wood of the bench.

"I learned all of this because a Pageless had accidently done the same to my partner, and the ministry had no issue killing what she had become. I saw there was good in her, but Ozma....Ozma saw only a Pageless in need of killing. So I shall be willing to Martyr myself if I must, because I fear I can not live much longer knowing the injustice continues forever onwards while I sit there and watch good Magical Girls bleed. If I must hurt them to excise this tumor, then my soul can rot so there's goes unsullied."

Chinami listened intently. She listened like her life depended on it. No, rather, in a way, wasn't what she was learning for the sake of far more lives? Yes, finally, she was learning. She was progressing her knowledge, moving forward from this crushing stagnation that she'd lived the past year. This... all of this. This information on the Pageless. It was like nothing she'd heard before. "Do they only consume stories for sustenance?" Chinami inquired, a hunger in her ignited anew. This hunger for knowledge, one she had suppressed for so long out of practicality, assuming there was no point in dwelling on questions she'd never have answered, now roared to the surface. "Do you know if they also, I guess... 'taste' things? Are they driven to it for any reason beyond survival?"

The revelation of how Tsubasa had attained her connection with and control over the Pageless provoked a brief worrying of Chinami's lower lip with her teeth. "Is that truly the only way you've found that peace with the Pageless can be attained?" She had to ask the question, honestly. After all, more often than not, there was no single answer to a problem, and those that found the first solution often touted it as the only one. Tsubasa even admitted that her process would almost certainly be incredibly unpleasant. Chinami couldn't help but admit internally that wanted to take the implied offer. Maybe it was because of how clear-headed she felt in this instance, but she felt more in touch with her own desires than she had in a long time. It had been a while since she'd done something for herself... and herself alone. Under normal circumstances, the possibility of being "more emotional" might have been a bad thing... However, to Chinami, it was an answer she'd not known she needed. Becoming Camelot had both helped and exacerbated her issues with connecting with others. She was able to be a pillar, a Hero... but a friend? She struggled with heart to heart connections. If this would counterbalance her Grimoire's influence in the opposite direction... could she achieve an equilibrium of selfhood? More positive to note was that the Grimoire would only "attempt" such influence regardless, which meant it could be managed, noted and resisted for someone with enough self control.

In other words, was this really any different from having any other Grimoire? Chinami couldn't honestly say that it was. And pain? Hah. She was now far too familiar with pain. She wasn't sure how high up this process could possibly rate compared to being incinerated alive, but she didn't feel it was arrogant to think that it couldn't be worse. And for that matter, it would hardly be as long-lasting... Geez, she really was considering this far too seriously. The only real problem here was... "I can't imagine those girls you..." She didn't want to say 'infect', but it was crudely apt. "...subject to this process will be very willing, and by that token, it will be far from painless for them." Chinami frowned. She couldn't in any good consciousness condone that. Moreover, she couldn't condone not giving those girls a choice in the matter. To force change of this nature on others would be blatant hypocrisy coming from her. And yet, she couldn't find it in herself to fight Tsubasa, not even necessarily because she might not win, but because Tsubasa hadn't even done anything yet. She could still possibly change her mind, as unlikely as it might be, or she could be foiled by the Magical Girls she intended to face. Chinami couldn't find real animosity in herself for the elder Magical Girl, not here and now, not after she'd rescued her. She couldn't stop her. She just... didn't have the will. Not yet. And she hoped that she wouldn't be given a reason to develop it. But what could she do? Was she simply to stand by and watch, to simply allow this to occur without resistence? She shouldn't. And yet...

The fact that Pageless could accidentally merge with Magical Girls -never mind deliberately- was a shock. It seemed like something that should be a known threat. In hindsight, in a certain way, it was obvious how it could occur... But far more shocking was... "Ozma did that?" Chinami uttered in something close to disbelief. Sure she didn't know the Crimson Comet especially well, same as most anyone else, but that she would do such a thing... when the only other living example was Tsubasa, who seemed perfectly amiable, sane and just generally capable of rational thought and action? Chinami almost felt she had to assume there was some extra context she wasn't hearing, but this felt too private a matter to pry into at this junture. Perhaps Tsubasa's partner was actually a bad person, irregardless of the Pageless fusion. Maybe the accidental and unguided fusion had resulted in far more egregious effects than Tsubasa's presumably refined process. Outside of questioning Tsubasa further, the only way she could get a hint at the truth... would be to ask Ozma, and so Chinami grimly tabled that inquiry for the next time she manged to corner the Crimson Comet in private.

"For whatever it's worth..." she finally said, "you have my sincerest condolences." She shook her head. "Even so, despite that I'm really not certain that I could stop you... even if I really wanted to fight you to begin with, I can't say you won't regret taking this path. I'm sure you've heard it from plenty of people before me though. You've clearly lived a long life. I'm certain you've heard similar, and you're still committed. Even with kind words and an open heart, I can't turn you off your path. I just hope the one you are paving with those good intentions doesn't lead to hell." Besides which, wasn't Tsubasa hurting her own cause? In seeking to make a point and find acceptence for those like her, wouldn't she only poison the well of the one path to progress she had effectively spearheaded?

Tsubasa had risen to her feet, and Chinami took the moment to shake the remaining lethergy from her mind and join her. It wasn't difficult really. The trickle from the Scabbard already had her bright-eyed and bushy tailed. Glancing around a land cast in night, Chinami couldn't help but marvel at what a clear night it seemed to be. The glitter of the moonlit waves. The crash of the sea. The scents on the wind. She wanted to put it down to having been unable to notice the small stuff while in so much pain, but it felt like everything in the world was... more somehow.

"Chinami, I am but one Magical Girl with one Grimoie to test upon. The nuances you seek require an organized research effort with many subjects. While I do truly believe the Revisions are the key to ending our conflict with the Pageless, they are not my sole focus. Perhaps you will carry on my research should Marrywell be my tomb. Instead I shall them as a flashpoint, for does the world not always resist change till conflict forces it? Where would Europe be if the first World War had not occured and exposed the web of secret allainces and military stockpiles just waiting to be used? My homeland would be far different had the Americans not forced the ports open at the end of a gunboat's broadsides."

Tsubasa's held tilted upwards as the moon's light seemed to swell, a disc lowering without a sound from that hanging crescent till a silver platform stood just over the cliff's edge. Tsubasa stepped onto it and turned, her robes billowing in the seaside wind while her face was as placid as ever.

"I hope I am wrong. That the girls at Marrywell are better then what I say and all of this needless. I have the utmost faith in the Magical Girl spirit and that we should be putting our lives to a greater purpose then dying in the shadows ad infinitum. But that hope will not stay my hand from action, so I shall leave it to others like yourself to nurture in my stead. Should we speak next I imagine you will be upset with me, so as selfish as it may be, please do not think too poorly of me for the collateral damage."

Was it an attempt at humor, or a sincere request? Impossible to tell when the ufo began to rise, drawing clear over Camelot's head before zooming away fast enough to make one head's spin just keeping track of it as it noiselessly broke the sound barrier with nary a ripple to be felt. She had plans to enact and even a trip home would not deter her from them.

Chinami would admit internally to disappointment, but in the same breath, it was a relief. The lack of research done was for as simple a reason as Tsubasa having avoided conducting it on others. That... That was good. Yes, that sounded better than she might have secretly wondered. What Tsubasa planned to do now was a divergence from the pattern. A "flashpoint", as she'd said. This was the time to disrupt the eternal cycle. She didn't think a World War was the best place to draw comparisons from... if for no other reason than to "deescalate" that line of thought on what could be, but all the same, she felt she understood the point that was being made. She didn't like it, but she understood it.

Chinami's mouth opened and then snapped shut at the sight of an all too familiar disk. She gave a short, breathless little laugh of incredulity and amazement at the flying saucer, as it came to retrieve its owner. It seemed Tsubasa's words about her Grimoire being about an alien had been far from hyperbole. Her book really did have a sense of humor, huh? Chinami could far too easily admit that she wanted to bound up the ramp that lowered in a childish fit. Because, fuck her, it was so damn cool. But even "coolness" couldn't keep her from sobering at the rabbit-eared Magical Girl's parting words. She didn't want to be angry with Tsubasa, but she felt the elder girl's words would be all but prophetic. She didn't know how angry she'd be until she witnessed the aftermath with her own eyes, but she hoped it wouldn't be enough to destroy any chance of forgiveness.

As the ufo rose, her breath caught in her throat, words lost on the wind of its passage. There had been one thing... "How am I supposed to carry on a legacy of research... if I don't have the chance to inherit it?" What if the Grand Ministry killed Tsubasa the way they had her partner... If they did that... Her knowledge and legacy... would have died with her! Chinami stiffened. She needed to hurry! The Goth girl took off in a dead sprint, retriving her phone, which had miraculously survived the battle due to being tucked away within her transformation. It was late at night, far too late to catch a plane right now, but she'd book the flight. She was already checking the airports, mapping a course back to London and to Marrywell.

She was rushing into this. She knew that. She knew that she might have normally second guessed herself. And that... was exactly why she was going to act impulsively now. She was going to go with her gut. She was going to do what she wanted to do for once. She was going to choose her own future, for better or worse, and she would take what came and accept it. The most important thing, more than anything else, was that now, for the first time, she had an opportunity... a chance to get out from under destiny's thumb.

She would write her own story.

'Please, Tsubasa, don't die... or do anything ridiculously stupid.'
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Hidden 3 mos ago Post by Ponn
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After doing some research, Olivia finally found the perfect place for Suzuya to try pizza for the first time. Located on Baker Street, just across from the Baker Street tube station, and only a short walk away from the Sherlock Holmes Museum, L’Antica Pizzeria Da Michele was widely considered to make the best pizza in London. Their Neapolitan-style pizza, while incredibly delicious, was also noted to be easy on the stomach, something she knew Suzuya would be grateful for. It was a rare sunny day, with clear, blue skies, but Olivia had still decided to bring an umbrella, just in case.

“I haven’t really read too many Sherlock Holmes stories,” Olivia was saying in her nasally voice as the pair entered the restaurant. “But Edgar Allan Poe wrote quite a few detective stories, so I thought I’d give some Holmes stories a try. They were actually pretty interesting! Plus, I really enjoyed reading Neil Gaiman’s ‘A Study in Emerald’, which combines Holmes with H.P. Lovecraft’s Cthulhu Mythos!” she added excitedly. “So, yeah, I think it would be really fun if we could visit the museum later!”

The restaurant they found themselves in was rather small, although Olivia had mentioned that most of the seating was actually in the basement. Still, with it being such a nice day, the bespectacled brunette picked an empty table by the window, right next to a wall upon which the words “I want someone to look at me the way I look at pizza” were spelled out in bright neon letters. It was also hot, the large oven taking up the center of the room emanating the warmth of a bonfire. Yet, on such a crisp day, the heat was quite appreciated, at least by Olivia.

“You know, I’ve never actually had a genuine Neapolitan pizza before,” Olivia noted as they sat down. “So this will be my first time, too!”

Suzuya was unsurprised to find Olivia had no issue keeping up conversation even as Suzuya was taking in all the sights without the filter of concern over Pageless to dull the surroundings. A pleasant day on the town, no Merrywell or Magical Girls to worry over, and the even sunnier disposition of her roommate to keep things lively. She'd done a little looking into pizza after accepting the invitation and the pictures of greasy, starchy discs of pizza wider then she was did little to fill her with confidence.

Olivia's words of reassurance, however, did. Trusting that she wouldn't steer her wrong and had put thought into this she went along with a small smile and her hands clasped before her. Her eyes bounced from the museum across the way to Olivia herself, finding it odd that- of all things- Olivia wasn't a blonde out of her transformed state. "We'll enjoy it together than...you know, it's a little funny, but I don't think I realized you wore glasses until today. I'm a little used to you being transformed to keep Xolys out and about. It's almost like we match."

Suzuya nudged her own frames higher up her nose for emphasis, her expression soft yet tentative as she tried to keep Olivia engaged as the warmth of the ovens washed over them. A comfort that reminded her of being enveloped in her Grimoire, but seeing as they actually wanted the staff to see them, neither had come with tails or tentacles in tow. "Sorry, I got a little distracted. I actually rather like books...I guess that's no surprise given who we are...though my knowledge of Western literature is a little limited."

Would Olivia think less of her for not knowing? Feeling herself flush with color she looked down, fiddling with her napkin rolled around a bundle of steel utensils. "Not that I haven't heard of Sherlock Holmes. He was, umm, done by that guy who wrote Hamlet, right?"

“Oh gosh! You’re right!” Olivia exclaimed with a smile when Suzuya pointed out how they both wore glasses. “And I suppose I am often transformed,” she conceded. “I just love being able to have darling Xolys around to chat with, but I wanted this to be a girls’ day out,” she added. “A special treat for just the two of us! Plus, for some reason, Xolys didn’t think they’d let him in here… He can be so silly sometimes!” she said with a giggle that came out as more of a snort.

Then Suzuya mentioned the author of Sherlock Holmes…

“Oh, no,” Olivia corrected, her expression one of cheerful amusement. “Hamlet was written by William Shakespeare. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote Sherlock Holmes. Well, the original stories, anyway,” she clarified, adjusting her glasses ever so slightly. “Like I was saying earlier, lots of other people have written about him over the years. So, um, what kinds of stories do you enjoy reading, Suzuya?”

The image of Xolys stooped over their table did bring a giggle to the blonde easterner, and it was so easy to see Olivia oblivious to anyone's concerns about wayward claws catching a waiter trying to shimmy past his impressive body. Suzuya was finding herself desensitized to him readily enough, in part because her transformation got her through the initial shock, but mostly due to coming to know him as a person on his own. It was more awkward to think of him as a summon who disappears when Olivia isn't in a ball gown then as someone she'd usually see passing her in the hallway.

"Oh. My mistake. My english is adequate but my knowledge of the culture is...limited, to say the least." She sighed, not feeling judgement for her error but not feeling great about it either. Still the pleasant atmosphere kept the wall flower from drawing inwards and she met Olivia's eye with a small smile. "I like short stories. The kinds where every paragraph can have a dozen different meanings and you can pour over them for hours analyzing how different interpretations change the entire context of what has come and will follow it. There's this writer in Japan who was one of our first to reach world wide acclaim, Ryunosuke Akutagawa, who did a whole lot of them. My favorite was In A Grove. In a way it's also a detective story but the reader is the detective and everyone's testimony is suspect. It even got made into a Kurosawa film!"

“Oh wow! That sounds really cool!” Olivia gushed. “I’d really like to read that sometime! Did you know Edgar Allan Poe mainly wrote short stories as well?” she asked. “He even once said that he thought all stories should be short enough to be read in one sitting. I don’t know if I completely agree,” she continued. “I mean, there are a lot of benefits to getting invested in a long novel as well, but I can still see where he’s coming from. Oh! So does that mean your favorite genre is mystery fiction?!”

"I don't think I'd want every story that short either. Sometimes you need a book worth coming back to sitting after sitting with more to offer, no?" Suzuya's expression steadily brightened as they talked, her fidgeting hands going still as she left the crumpled napkin lay across her lap. "And yes, I do enjoy mysteries. Not so much murder mysteries but...the stories were someone grapples with the morality of something and there is no right answer. Even horror has a tantalizing mystery to the unknown, though when it turns out to be a monster in a rubber suit I tend to lose interest, movie or book regardless.”

“I suppose that makes sense…” Olivia conceded with a thoughtful frown, before quickly brightening up again. “But even then, some of those monsters do look kind of cute. Still, I agree, the most interesting creatures are the ones your own imagination can come up with,” she added. “That’s what I love so much about eldritch horrors! They’re just so interesting, they defy description!”

"We have these books. They’re like comics but read right to left. You'd like some of the horror ones. Junji Ito would be something you and Xolys would enjoy, now that I think about it." The blonde wondered if she could get one mail ordered for her, and was reaching for her phone when she smelled a fresh whiff of tomato and saw a man walking up with their order. The hesitancy she felt about it didn't seem to rear up this time and she adjusted her glasses. "I'll find you something of his another time. For now we should enjoy our meal."

“That was great, wasn’t it Suzuya?!” Olivia was saying as they stepped out of the restaurant. “The perfect flavor, yet not overly filling in the slightest! In fact, I think that was the best pizza I’ve ever had in my entire—”

“Um, excuse me,” an American-accented voice called from behind them. “I, uh, think you forgot this.”

Turning around, Olivia was greeted with the sight of a short-haired young woman with a camera hung around her shoulder, and holding…

“My umbrella!” Olivia gasped. “Thank you so much!”

“Don’t mention it,” the girl replied with a chuckle.

“I know it’s absolutely gorgeous out right now, but I’ve learned that the weather can change quite rapidly here!” Olivia explained, sounding very serious. “Why, just a few weeks ago, some friends and I were walking through a lovely park on a sunny day, when, all of a sudden, a terrible storm blew in, and we were all completely soaked!”


“Oh! I’m so sorry!” the bespectacled brunette gasped as a thought occurred to her. “I never introduced myself! I’m Olivia, and this is my friend, Suzuya.”

"It's nice to meet you." the blonde chirped, radiating contentment after discovering the simple joy of seasoned tomato and cheese settled in her stomach.

“Same here.” the girl replied with an easy smile. “I’m Kate.”

“It’s very nice to meet you as well, Kate!” Olivia added in her typical, over-enthusiastic manner, although Kate seemed to be more amused than bothered by it. “Um, judging by your accent, and that camera, I’m guessing you’re a tourist?”

“Yup,” Kate confirmed. “And I may be goin’ out on a limb, but I don’t suppose you two are from around here either,” she added with a grin.

"No, we're actually students studying here abroad. I've only been here in London a little over a week." Suzuya chirped, finding the tourist a friendly enough face. While there was yet to be a cloud in the sky it would have been dreary to be caught by a sudden storm and getting soaked outside her Magical Girl state. "You're having a good time seeing the sights?"

“Sure am,” Kate confirmed. “This isn’t my first time in London, but even when I visit someplace more than once, there always seems to be something new to discover.”

“This is actually our first opportunity to explore the city since we arrived,” Olivia explained. “And there are so many interesting places to check out and exciting experiences to have! In fact, Suzuya just finished having pizza for the very first time!” she added happily.

"H-Hey, don't go telling her that. People might think I'm some kind of country bumpkin!" The blonde laughed, sticking a finger into Olivia's side for embarrassing her with her ardent sincerity. "It, was, pretty good. Wonderful even. Though I still feel the need to walk it off, so we were going to visit the museum over there."

“Ooohh… Sherlock Holmes, huh?” Kate noted with a grin. “Nice. Say, before you head over there, would you like me to take your picture in front of the restaurant?” Kate asked, pointing to it with her thumb. “Havin’ pizza for the first time is an experience you should have a memento of.”

“Oh, yes! That would be wonderful!” Olivia gushed. “Don’t you think so, Suzuya?!”

Grinning with a giddy sort of energy Suzuya squeezed in closer to the brunette, the London light striking their glasses as the frames bumped against each other with their proximity. "Sure, a picture sounds fun. It'll be nice to make a pleasant memory."

“Okay,” Kate said with a chuckle as Olivia leaned in and placed her arm (!) around Suzuya. “Say ‘cheese’!”



“Looks good,” Kate told them as she inspected the image on her camera’s display. “I just sent it to your phones, if ya wanna see for yourselves.”

“O-Our phones…?” Olivia asked, somewhat surprised to see that she had gotten a new message. “But how did you…?”

“This is a pretty special camera,” Kate explained with a wink, while patting the device in question. “I got it custom-made. I guess you could say I’m somethin’ of a world traveler, so havin’ a top notch camera is pretty important. It’s not much good for selfies,” she added with a chuckle. “But I’m not really into that kinda thing anyway.”

“Gosh… That’s really cool!” Olivia marveled. “And the picture looks great, too!”

“Thanks! Well, I’m gonna get goin’ now,” Kate said as she readjusted her camera strap. “I hope you two enjoy the museum!”

“You’re welcome! And I’m sure we will!” Olivia called. “This has been such a great day already, hasn’t it Suzuya?” she noted, giving her friend a big smile, before looking back down at the picture on her phone’s display screen. “I’m going to cherish this day for the rest of my life!”
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Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by TheWendil
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Moonlight Tsubasa would see nothing but a cold stone wall covered in a slick wetness, bars on the window that allowed a modest amount of light into her prison cell. In the lower levels of Marrywell it's ancient history became more apparent. This was pronounced with the several medieval inspired torture devices Valeria made sure Roma passed by on her march to the cell to make her aware of the consequences of displeasing the ministry. How intent Valeria was on using them would be left vague.

Chains click as the twisted magical girl has her hands wrenched above her head, steel manacles holding them toward the ceiling in a tight grip. The same is done for her ankles which are spread to part her legs just enough to where she can remain standing but uncomfortably so, unable to retract her legs together. She was arranged in the center of a barren cell, Valeria walking around her with a sour face as a final pat down is administered to make sure Roma had no more tricks up her now exposed sleeves.

"So it's come to this then. Look at what you've got me doing, dumkopf. I'm here doing the Minstry's bidding again because of the damage you've caused. I don't care how noble you think you were, putting innocent people at risk like that. I'm very very angry with you, and I have a mind to take out all of that anger onto you right here and now. But I'm not, not yet. I hope you are aware of how close you are to having the longest and most painful night of your life."

The mechanical girl stomped around, observing her caught target like a hawk. Her hands would gesture forward, clearly intending to do something to that vulnerable body but managing to restrain herself as a door opened nearby. She'd finally look away from Tsubasa and towards the newcomer striding down the hall.

"Go ahead and make your choice while you still can."

Marrywell had a basement. Of course it did. A building as old as this under the Grand Minister's watch was going to have a basement but the décor looked as outdated as the middle of the last century or so. As they passed down grimed walls and barbaric torture devices, Charlotte, transformed from her magical state, noted with little humor that more than half of what they were looking at was probably illusion, crafted by their enigmatic leader. Maybe it was to intimidate any Magical Girls who actually found their fates down these depths, who challenged the Ministry. Still, it only meant Lillian had some gallows' humor to put in place.

Charlotte tailed Valeria from behind as she led the way. The others were no doubt still licking their wounds, carrying on with their lives, doing whatever they did as carefree, albeit hardened now, Magical Girls. "How did we end up as interrogators," Charlotte mused with some bitterness in her tone. As Roma was chained in place in crude fashion-the Grand Minister only said for Valeria to do her best in extracting relevant information-Charlotte stood off to the side to watch. Roma's Grimoire, the Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, hung loosely at her hip while the redhead crossed her arms.

"Why do we even do this if the Grand Minister knows what she already wants to hear," Charlotte wondered aloud. Her fingers moved in slight motions only the adept could see as the air became lightly tinged with crimson magic.

"You two are doing this, because the Minister wants to make certain you know what will happen should you express your individuality a little further out of line." Roma sounded...amused? The unbreakable monotone was gone, replaced with a wry amusement that didn't fit her current situation at all. Then again it was the first time she was untransformed, the statuesque woman replaced with with who barely looked pubescent to begin with. The short, traditional Japanese girl still managed to stare at them with unblinking eyes that panned from cyborg to witch.

"After all, who else here expresses any dissent but you two? No, you'll be both torturer, audience, and victim in one. Lillian's cruelty is truly a horrific master stroke of manipulation. Regardless, it is a wasted effort. I will not simply turn into a mindless drone for Lillian and I shall not lift a finger to undo what I have done. So I suppose we shall simply have to see if you two develop a new fetish or leave me here till the school collapses under the weight of its own tyranny."

Valeria was getting tired of the depowered Roma continuing her rants against the Minister. She'd join at Ozma's side and give a small smile as finally there was something nice in this old dungeon to look at.

"I don't want to think about it. I just didn't want to make you become an interrogator on your own and handle this by yourself."

The girl wished to admit she did not wish to inflict any harm on Roma, but saying that in front of her would be foolish if she sought to intimidate her. She'd instead keep her tough act up and return to her side.

"We have your grimoire. You know, the source of your power and the tool that you use to wage your war on the Ministry. We can lock it away, seal it off. Somewhere you'd never find it. You might get free of this dungeon and out into the world again but you would never find that grimoire. I think that's a fitting punishment for what you've done to other grimoires tonight. What about you Ozma? Couldn't you arrange something like that?"

Charlotte was only half-paying attention in truth. Her mind was elsewhere and she nodded along or frowned when it was expected of her. As old as she was, she was used to answering people what they wanted when she had to get "serious". Her fingers thrummed against Roma's Grimoire as if tapping together a spell and she finally flicked her gaze back on the two girls as if roused from deep inaction. "That may just be a crueler fate than killing you. Death isn't something we Magical Girls are fond of so I don't see why we can't lock your book away Roma."

She tilted her head, staring at the chained girl with an unreadable expression. There were two core questions they needed answer to tonight and the first was-"Can Revised Grimoires be reversed? We'd like your answer and cooperation for that Roma." There was hardly any need to intimidate when the brimming and brewing German was right there. "The quicker you give us an answer, the quicker we can move on and leave to your thoughts."

"Really you jump directly to the existential threats? I am willing to give my life for my belief, and if that means abandoning my Grimoire then so be it. I've already demonstrated there are other avenues to power if I must continue the fight in its absence. And should I lose my ageless status then I can know I have but one life to give, and give it I shall." The pint sized terror of Marrywell met Val's threatening gaze, the boorish German having a rather commanding presence that kept her focus from Ozma's murmuring to herself.

"As for the Revisions, I am happy to answer your questions, and I would be grateful if you shared any information with the other's outside. They have no need to fear these girls shall rampage and hunger for stories. They are the same friends, partners and rivals they always were. Only less....restricted. I have channeled the more destructive impulses of the Pageless from devouring the contents of stories to eating away the borders. The fringes that make the ending and beginning while the journey is left whole. Perhaps a new theme or message is imparted, but it is truly up to the individual and their merged Pageless at that point if I am not holding the pen to paper."

"But can they be reversed? I have not a single clue to offer. And I do truly mean that. I never even looked." A touch of cruelty tinged Roma's lips as a vicious sneered bared her teeth in the low dungeon lighting. "Even if you plucked every nail and shaved my skin till the muscles wept rivers of blood, even if Lillian poured all her magic into compelling the truth from my lips, I simply have nothing to say to undo my plan now that it is in motion."

"Von gott! You whine so much! Your plans are not very good if they led you to this situation!"

Valeria's patience on good days was low, but now it is nonexistent. She thrashed the chains above the prisoner to make the girl swing around, jerked by metal.

"Big metal chains wrapped around your arms huh? Not so fun? Ja ja, imagine living like that," Valeria sneered, flexing her own metal limbs with cold dark humor.

"You reversed and tampered with those girl's grimoires, their connection to the magic that keeps them who they are and you didn't even care enough to find out if they could be reversed. Maybe if the girls didn't want to join in on your insanity. Just another radical type that thinks they have it all figured out and they'll enlighten everyone else by force. Tch."

Val gestured towards Ozma. "I can destroy her book right here and now." As she said this, a flame sparked at the end of a mechanical palm bright and shining like a candlelight.

"We can just end this debacle now. It's not like she has any clue what's going on anymore or even understands the consequences of what she's done..."

Charlotte sighed, more so at the mess this became. Of course, of course Roma had no idea how to reverse the process. It never even occurred to her twisted little mind. Still, in a world of magic and miracles, curses even, hope was not lost. They still had Eins to tamper and study the infected and, if truly need be, the Grand Minister herself. But the Crimson Comet would rather look at the infliction herself before ever letting their leader get near the Revised. Charlotte mused over this, watching Valeria take out her frustrations on the hapless Roma. She didn't bother to stop her. After all, Magical Girls were used to grotesque abuse on the field, the damage done by Pageless attacking their very stories, damaging their very souls. Besides, she knew of more than a few people above ground who'd endorse the treatment.

"That's for every student you scarred from your desires," Charlotte noted as Valeria finished her display, aiming a bright spark of flame at Roma's Grimoire. Charlotte moved her hip, keeping the book out of Valeria's sights. "If she doesn't know, she doesn't know. We can't change that; only hope Eins and I find a way to reverse the method. We also have unfinished business with her and with or without her magic she's just said she'll bite," Charlotte reminded her. She'd turn a curious stare back on Roma with, "That's one thing answered. Why did you do it? All of this, and you still never gave me a straight answer. I know you're not so dumb as to think making Magical Girls like Pageless accomplishes anything. There's something else driving you."

There was contradiction in Roma's words anyway. How could there be no fear of the infected turning ravenous like Pageless when they were injected by the same feral instinct and desires that drove them? Even if Roma's theories somehow remained true, what of the girls who couldn't survive the process? What stopped them from consuming each other's stories? Evidently, these obvious points manifested in Charlotte and Valeria's heads. But there was something else.

"What is it Roma? What's this really about." A pause, much like she did in the mall. "Is this about Bastion?"

Val's bad cop routine was getting tiresome, already bounced to the furthest extreme such that Roma really had no option but to call her bluff for what it was. After all, as sickening as she was, Lillian did want Moonlight Tsubasa for herself and not Roma Bhakti. When she stopped swaying from her chains being jerked she calmed herself and considered Ozma's words.

The words that made something vile twist in her gut and the girls nails bite into her palm as they clenched under a sudden swell of emotion. "You say her name with the weight it is due. Good. I would not be happy if her killer was cavalier with the life she stole. Yes, I will not deny I do this for Bastion. My partner, my closest friend, and...."

"When you came into our room, did you see her atop me and think you were saving me from a mindless beast far beyond reason? I saw her eyes even as her claws ripped into me. She was still there. Still swimming back to the surface after a plunge into the deep. You robbed the first Naturally Revised Magical Girl of even a chance to grow, so I have come to repeat your greatest failure and give the whole school a second chance. Perhaps you can return them to what once was, but it will not be quick. It may take decades. Centuries. Will this dungeon be filled with the Revised, or shall Valeria here begin the mass book burning?"

There was no mistaking the venom dripping from each word and the hatred in Roma's eyes as she pulled against her chains, braying with a long contained resentment that had finally been directed at it's target. "Burn my book. Put my head above that gate and leave my body in a ditch. I want to see you set the precedent that others will follow, and I hope you hate yourself for every Magical Girl killed because you chose this. And so, I have given you all your crisis, and even now with all that said I have a tiny hope I am wrong. That same hope is why I do not fear merging Pageless with Grimoires."

"Because I believe in Magical Girls. That we are stronger then the beasts, we are greater together, and there is nothing in this world we can not conquer if we did not live as sheep to be slaughtered at the leisure of a Minister and her pet Comet."

The book burning comment did stay Valeria's hand and make her put away her flame. She'd take in Roma's speech, realizing she was connected with Ozma's past and the team she had before. At that moment she felt out of the loop and had to step back and figure things out for herself.

"I believe in Magical Girls too and that we need to stick together against the Pageless. It's why I think one day you will set aside your dangerous delusions and come back to rejoin magical society. And you will work until your hands are raw to the bone to undo the damage you've done. Maybe you had good intentions at some point, but this is clearly just your own personal fuck ups. You can tell the rest to the Minister, I'm done with you."

Roma was prepared to die and carry her convictions beyond the grave, a true maniacal cult leader to the end. It is very difficult to threaten someone like this but Valeria thought of the one thing Roma couldn't stand to lose. Her ability to speak.

"Ozma are you done asking questions? I think we've gotten all we can and I'm tired of her." The German began to craft a leather muzzle, strapped together and stitched with magic connecting it together. It's raised to Roma's mouth to deny the would be martyr her chance to rant and rave about all her perceived injustices.

Valeria also wanted to know a lot more about Bastion and Roma, but knew that'd have to wait until later.

Charlotte narrowed her eyes and quickly caught Valeria's look. A brief gaze between them was all that was needed for communication, Charlotte's confirmation that she had no idea what Roma was talking about. At least, partly. "I see. Your madness must truly be far gone if you're misremembering events," the redhead said, raising two fingers flimsily in front of Roma. "But there are two things wrong with your narrative. The first is that Bastion was long gone. By the time you two were found, she was beyond saving, as feral as a Pageless, the result of Revision. And if Bastion wasn't strong enough to bring herself out of that state, what makes you think others would be?"

She let those words sink in for the other girl. Whether she implied the weakness of Bastion's heart was up to her partner's interpretation. "Secondly, I only know all this from reports gathered from the event. I was never there that night," Charlotte said. "I'm not going to pretend I don't have sins to my name or questions about my title as a Magical Girl, but I'm also not going to accept a crime I never committed. I don't know what you're talking about," Charlotte continued. There was something else, something left unsaid, but these thoughts could be deterred to later. Even so, there was enough conviction in her tone to relate she was telling some truth. That only led to more questions that made the Crimson Comet frown to herself.

Because she was lying. There was more to what the reports said about Bastion's incident. And she didn't like the idea of not knowing what was going on. It only led her to more and more puzzles, a question of who was sent out to destroy a Revised Magical Girl.

"We're done here," she affirmed to Valeria. While there was little they received in answers to the problem immediately before their eyes, they obtained information pointing to a motive and something else further. Was there someone in the school acting on unsaid orders? That shouldn't be the case, not when the Grand Minister gave her word it was never going to happen again. For some reason, Roma only felt like one obstacle in their way.

Charlotte's fingers made their motions one final time and the barrier of magic, layered upon layer with spells only she knew the curse of, dissipated. She wasn't about to let someone break through her magical field a second time, least of all the Grand Minister. It was a small hope to think her spells could keep their conversation blind from Lillian but it was hope all the same in her mind.

"Hey. A little birdy told me there's a nice party happening tonight. Why don't we give ourselves a night off and crash it~?" she suddenly said to Valeria, melancholy sprouted into her usual smirk; maybe she sensed the other girl's reaction from all this. For now, they deserved that much. The festivities should have started any moment now.

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Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by The 42nd Gecko
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The 42nd Gecko

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Scene with Mika in the Hall at Night

Bonnie nearly jumped out of her skin at walking out of her door and immediately being confronted with Mika, especially considering she thought she was being sneaky. Not for any bad reason, of course! Just didn't want to disturb people late at night.

“Huh? Uh.." Mika quickly took charge of the situation and grabbed her letter. Bonnie wondered how Mika had known. She was called the Wise I guess? “Thank you?" Bonnie was confused and surprised but apparently everything had gone well?


Scene under the table with Silvia and Celina in the Aftermath

“Well, it's nice to meet you again Silvia!" Bonnie smiled as best she could, in the wet-rained on table-situation. “I can't say I'm great, but I think I'm okay for now."

“As far as looking bad though, I mean, you are hiding beneath a table, maybe go get yourself warmed up and dried off..?" Bonnie offers as Celina enters, her eyes going between the two.


Scene at Bonnie's Room with Tesni right before the sleepover.

Bonnie opened the door with a smile. “Oh hi, Tesni! I was just about to head to Olivia and Suzuya's so she can lead the way to the... haunted classroom we're going to be partying at." Bonnie wasn't sure why that was the case but boy howdy was it!

Pulling out a big bright piece of yellow paper, “Sleepover is at haunted classroom Olivia is leading the way to, 1-519-147-8322 is my cell if you can't find it." was written on it in sharpie, Bonnie began taping it to the outside of her door. Hopefully this would be enough for everyone to find the right spot. And hey, if an introvert didn't want to come, awful directions was a great excuse!

“Shall we?" Bonnie offers her arm for Tesni.
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Hidden 3 mos ago 3 mos ago Post by ShadowSunRisen
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ShadowSunRisen Final Prophet

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The experience with Roma left Valeria mentally exhausted. She'd give quick goodbyes and think over her actions while getting herself isolated from the faculty and student body. Great worry at what she might become filled her heart, and Roma's words had dug deeper under her skin than she cared to admit.

In these moments of doubt, Valeria yearned to busy herself with her hands. She could not sit idle and let these unpleasant thoughts assault her. She knew of the planned sleepover the students were arranging to take part in soon and decided they would need a space to do it.

I can be the big hero of the kinder I always wanted to be. I can prove Roma's words wrong and maybe earn another Ozma kiss. It's too tempting to ignore!

So, the work began. Valeria chose the spookiest location to fit for the soon to be Halloween setting. The old music room that hadn't been used for years and was doing little but collecting cobwebs and scaring the younger students was the first big step. Barging down the door with a construction hat on her head and one of her hands turned into a sledgehammer and the other a drill, it was time to excitedly get to work!


Valeria had really outdone herself this time. The classroom had been eradicated and rebuilt in its entirety. Instead of brick and mortar it is stone and cement that creates large round towers and massive walls that are neatly compact into a rectangular shape. From the outside of the academy, it appeared a small sized castle had just fallen in from the heavens and squashed one of the classrooms, replacing it. A large moat of ugly black slime instead of a river would mark the crossing from the school into the haunted castle proper. Across the drawbridge and into a splendid ornate hall with a long rolling red carpet and rich hanging chandeliers that appeared faded and ancient. Long windows with strange shadows behind them just out of view, towering empty knight statues that could come to life at any moment, and of course a few summoned bats to prowl around the place and make noise. Valeria had gone the extra mile and brought out her inner theme park tycoon player to bring out the classics.

For the girls, they'd all have bedrooms they could share or use alone. Each one came with a large bed and dresser, plenty of festive outfits to match the occasion from royalty to knightly warriors. Valeria expected they'd want to wear their own costumes instead, however. There was a large courtyard full of some plants Val had quickly yoinked from the Academy courtyard, she figured the Ministry wouldn't mind. Her most proud creation is the long twelve foot wide pool she had managed to place in the center of the castle's courtyard, right in the middle. There's as many jack-o-lanterns as she could cram around to provide lighting, and the moon reflected down into the pool like the spirit of Halloween looking on with approval.

"Vunderbah! This is perfect!" Valeria was covered in oil and dust, quickly rubbing her face with a rag to be less of a mess.

"Now I've just got to invite the others."

Soon the invitations are out for any interested and nearby magical girls to come over to the sleepover monster mash.

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