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1 day ago
Current “Its so easy a monkey could do it. ...unfortunately, they found me.”
1 day ago
Wherever you are at in life, don’t get lost in the little things. Remember the big picture and ask yourself if this problem matters in the long run before you stress over it.
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6 days ago
If you replace the 'W' in Where, What, and When with a 'T', you answer the question.
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7 days ago
"There is a moment in every dawn when light floats, there is the possibility of magic. Creation holds its breath." ~~Douglass Adams
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8 days ago
Its a beautiful thing to hear a song that reminds you of someone you love.
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Bio



“NO ADMITTANCE.
NOT EVEN TO AUTHORISED PERSONNEL.
YOU ARE WASTING YOUR TIME HERE.
GO AWAY.”
― Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless


NOTICE


Thank you for Noticing This Notice.


Your Noting it has been Noted.


And it has been Reported to the proper Authority.


Hello lurker/ My old friend/ I've come to talk to you again/ Because a shadow softly creeping/ Lurking in the chat while I was sleeping/ And the roleplay that was forming in my brain/ Still remains with the sound of lurking.

In dead roleplays I walked alone/ Narrow pathways of casual zone...

Need mor ༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ

(Made in collaboration with @hatakekuro)




It is known that there are an infinite number of worlds, simply because there is an infinite amount of space for them to be in. However, not every one of them is inhabited. Therefore, there must be a finite number of inhabited worlds. Any finite number divided by infinity is as near to nothing as makes no odds, so the average population of all the planets in the Universe can be said to be zero. From this it follows that the population of the whole Universe is also zero, and that any people you may meet from time to time are merely the products of a deranged imagination.

--Douglass Adams




All the world’s a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.

At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms.

Then the whining schoolboy, with his satchel
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school.

And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress’ eyebrow.

Then a soldier,
Full of strange oaths and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon’s mouth.

And then the justice,
In fair round belly with good capon lined,
With eyes severe and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances;
And so he plays his part.

The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slippered pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose and pouch on side;
His youthful hose, well saved, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank, and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound.

Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness and mere oblivion,
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.


~~As You Like It, Shakespear


"Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow,
Creeps in this petty pace from day to day,
To the last syllable of recorded time;
And all our yesterdays have lighted fools
The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle!
Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing."


~~ Macbeth, Shakespear





“All stories told have been told before. We tell them to ourselves, as did all men who ever were. And all men who ever will be. The only things new are the names.”




“The purpose of a storyteller is not to tell you how to think, but to give you questions to think upon.”




“What do you know?”

“Almost everything. That almost part can be a real kick in the teeth sometimes.”

“What do you want, then?”

“What I can’t have.” Wit turned to him, eyes solemn. “Same as everyone else, Kaladin Stormblessed.”




"Two blind men waited at the end of an era, contemplating beauty. They sat atop the world’s highest cliff, overlooking the land and seeing nothing.

'Can beauty be taken from a man?' the first asked the second.

'It was taken from me,' the second replied. 'For I cannot remember it.' This man was blinded in a childhood accident. 'I pray to the God Beyond each night to restore my sight, so that I can find beauty again.'

'Is beauty something one must see then?' the first asked.

'Of course. That is it’s nature. How can you appreciate a work of art without seeing it?'

'I can hear a work of music,' the first said.

'Very well, you can hear some kinds of beauty - but you cannot know full beauty without sight. You can know only a small portion of beauty.'

'A sculpture,' the first said. 'Can I not feel its curves and slopes, the touch of the chisel that transformed common rock into uncommon wonder?'

'I suppose,' said the second, 'that you can know the beauty of a sculpture.'

'And what of the beauty of food? Is it not a work of art when a chef crafts a masterpiece to delight the tastes?'

'I suppose,' said the second, 'that you can know the beauty of a chef’s art.'

'And what of the beauty of a woman,' the first said. 'Can I not know her beauty in the softness of her caress, the kindness of her voice, the keenness of her mind as she reads philosophy to me? Can I not know this beauty? Can I not know most kinds of beauty, even without seeing it?'

'Very well,' said the second. 'But what if your ears were removed, your hearing taken away? Your tongue taken out, your mouth forced shut, your sense of smell destroyed? What if your skin were burned so that you could no longer feel? What if all that remained to you was pain? You could not know beauty then. It can be taken from a man.'"

The messenger stopped, cocking his head to Shallan.
"What?" she asked.

"What think you? Can beauty be taken from a man? If he could not touch, taste, smell, hear, see, what if all he knew was pain? Has that man had beauty taken away from him?"

"I…" What did this have to do with anything? "Does the pain change day by day?"

"Let us say it does," the messenger said.

"Then beauty, to that person, would be the times when the pain lessens. Why are you telling me this story?"

The messenger smiled. "To be human is to seek beauty, Shallan. Do not despair, do not end the hunt because thorns grow in your way. Tell me, what is the most beautiful thing you can imagine?"

...




“In this,” Wit said, “as in all things, our actions give us away. If an artist creates a work of powerful beauty – using new and innovative techniques – she will be lauded as a master, and will launch a new movement in aesthetics. Yet what if another, working independently with that exact level of skill, were to make the same accomplishments the very next month? Would she find similar acclaim? No. She’d be called derivative.

“So it’s not beauty itself we admire. It’s not the force of intellect. It’s not the invention, aesthetics, or capacity itself. The greatest talent we think a man can have?” He plucked a final string. “Seems to me that it must be nothing more than novelty.”




"A blind man awaited the era of endings," Wit said, "contemplating the beauty of nature."

Silence

"That man is me," Wit noted. "I'm not physically blind, just spiritually. And that other statement was actually very clever, if you think about it."




"What is it to be witty, then?”

“To say clever things.”

“And what is cleverness?”

“I…” Why was he having this conversation? “I guess it’s the ability to say and do the right things at the right time.”

The King’s Wit cocked his head, then smiled.




“Expectation. That is the true soul of art. If you can give a man more than he expects, then he will laud you his entire life. If you can create an air of anticipation and feed it properly, you will succeed.

“Conversely, if you gain a reputation for being too good, too skilled . . . beware. The better art will be in their heads, and if you give them an ounce less than they imagined, suddenly you have failed. Suddenly you are useless. A man will find a single coin in the mud and talk about it for days, but when his inheritance comes and is accounted one percent less than he expected, then he will declare himself cheated.”

Wit shook his head, standing up and dusting off his coat. “Give me an audience who have come to be entertained, but who expect nothing special. To them, I will be a god. That is the best truth I know.”

~~ Stromlight Archive, Brandon Sanderson


"You see, whether you can draw like this or not, being able to think up this kind of design, it depends on whether or not you can say to yourself, ‘Oh, yeah, girls like this exist in real life. If you don’t spend time watching real people, you can’t do this, because you’ve never seen it. Some people spend their lives interested only in themselves. Almost all Japanese animation is produced with hardly any basis taken from observing real people, you know. It’s produced by humans who can’t stand looking at other humans. And that’s why the industry is full of otaku!"
-Hayao Miyazaki

"In culture an analogous situation leads to the emergence of enclaves shut up in ghettos, where intellectual production likewise stagnates because of inbreeding in the form of incessant repetition of the selfsame creative patterns and techniques. The internal dynamics of the ghetto may appear to be intense, but with the passage of years it becomes evident that this is only a semblance of motion, since it leads nowhere, since it neither feeds into nor is fed by the open domain of culture, since it does not generate new patterns or trends, and since finally it nurses the falsest of notions about itself, for lack of any honest evaluation of its activities from outside."

~Stanislaw Lem, author of Solaris

Some heartfelt music while you lurk



Or U liSTEN TO tem MOOSIC!



I just don't want you to have a Bad Time...



What do I live for?





"I think I've seen this movie before." -@Guess Who




I LOVE TVTROPES!

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Balthier D. Sydney


Alabasta Bar by the Docks


Disaster adverted, at least for now. The old man with an eyepatch spoke up, saying much the same thing. From the way their crew, even the fop who called himself captain, listened, it was clear to Balthier who the real person in charge was here. He squinted at the man. His mug was familiar. Balthier probably had seen it on a wanted poster somewhere but he couldn't put a name to the face.

No matter, the bar was intact and it seemed like the trouble makers were heading out. He could claim his reward now.

However, the dragon man's sharp ears heard something that sent shivers down his spine. As he stepped out the door, the pink-haired captain was speaking to someone over a snail.

Detonation. A bomb?

Seven days. Demands. Next stop in Water 7.

That defiantly didn't sound good. Whatever that man had planned, Balthier suspected that Alabasta was not the place to be in a week's time.

The Golden Lion. Now that was a name he recognized. The legendary pirate, Shikki's ship. Balthier had heard through the rumour mill that Shikki had a son, who was currently wreaking havoc from the East Blue to the Grand Line. The burning of Loguetown was new, but it fit with the descriptions.

In a flash, he remembered the name of the man with an eyepatch. Shigeuchi, former member of Shikki's crew. Which meant that pink-haired fop was Nikko, himself, the son of Shikki.

Well. That was certainly an infamous pair. From just first impressions, he wanted to punch 'Red Lion' Nikko in the face. Shigeuchi didn't seem too bad.

Balthier dropped the drunken act and shook his head as he muttered after them. "Well, that's that then. Pleasure meeting ya too, ya bunch of stuck-up barnacle-covered keisters." He waved a lazy middle finger at their backs. Then he paced over to the two girls who had been trash-talked by the gang and held out a friendly hand. "Are you all right misses? Don't let pirates like that get you down. They are much like a far off storm. Full of bluster and thunder, but perfectly harmless to any experienced navigator. Sooner or later they'll blow themselves out and we'll be the ones laughing." He paused and studied them. "The name's Balthier D. Sydney, and I'm the leading man. Who might you two be?"

@King Cosmos@KillBox@ladyonyx04@Reflection


Balthier D. Sydney


Alabasta Bar by the Docks


Balthier sullenly sipped at some cheap beer while he contemplated his next move.

The docks had been a dead end. Nobody he talked to had seen a ship matching the Nidhogg's description, save one, who only saw at a distance. When he had sought out the dockmaster he'd been fobbed off by an irate secretary who insisted he make an appointment and comeback tomorrow. Money was his the main issue right now, nothing got people to talk faster then greasing their palms. Except maybe threats, but those could draw trouble. His current drink was courtesy of an unwilling sponsor, who hopefully didn't realize his wallet was missing yet, but there wasn't enough in there to start buying information.

After this thoroughly wasted day he'd sought out a seedy bar in hopes of more general information, even rumors would do. Sitting there drinking nothing would look suspicious, of course, so he ordered some beer while he was there.

Unfortunately, it looked and tasted like piss. In fact, he was still trying to convince himself that it wasn't.

Chatter had been uninteresting, just the usual going-on and talk of pirates, until that pink-headed fop and his crew showed up. The atmosphere immediately turned wary, the smarter customers started paying off their tab and leaving. Soon after he arrived, more dangerous-looking people arrived. The bar became a powder keg that one little spark would ignite.

Then it did. Knives, challenges, and death beams flew.

Balthier ignored them. Young pirates were always looking to throw their weight around. "Hey, bartender!" He called. "Might want to close up early today, looks like a storm rolled in." The bartender threw a disgusted look at the troublemakers, then a thoughtful look back at Balthier. "I recognize you. That tattoo." He said slowly with an accent so thick he was chewing on the words. He gestured at Balthier’s dragon tattoo under his coat. "You're a pirate too. Big bounty."

Balthier shrugged. "Aye, I am and I was. Bit of a foolish youth. Turning over a new leaf and all that."

The bartender grunted. "Let me make you an offer."

"So long as its one I can't refuse." He quipped with a grin.

The big man didn't look amused. "Mh. If you can stop those pirates from destroying my place, I'll make it worth your while."

Balthier leaned forward. "Oh? In that case, I need money, information, and booze."

"Done. Done. Done. Not much cash though."

"That's fine, the more of one you can provide, the less of the others I need. But first," He held up his flagon and waggled it plaintively. "Need some liquid courage."

The big man packed up with surprising speed, snatching bottles off the wall and sweeping bills into a safe, somehow managing to fill Balthier's flagon in the process. The former captain peered into his drink. "Bloody hell that was slick." He toasted the man, took a deep quaff, then turned around to join the fun.

Most of the bar was quickly emptying, save for the quarreling pirates. Balthier staggered to the danger zone between them, holding our out his arms in the universal 'stop' gensture, clutching his drink in one hand and shouting in a drunken voice. "Hey, heey, easy my good sirs and madams. There's drink here enough for everyone. But if you go smashing this place, there won't be. Why don't we call a truce for now, talk things over, get drunk, and if you still feel like fighting after the hangover's worn off, then we find you an empty bit of land in the desert and you can duke it out there where you won't ruin any fine establishments, such as this one."

He flashed all of them a benign smile.

@ladyonyx04@Reflection@KillBox
@Crimson Raven If a fight starts up, which it might, feel free to jump into that.


That's what I was thinking. Investigating a commotion is more logical then coincidence.
Hmm... gotta figure out how to rope my character in with the others...


Balthier D. Sydney


Somewhere in the West Blue, two months ago


Alabasta

The former captain of the Black Dragon Pirates, feared throughout the West Blue, sat hammered at a bar listening with increasing impatience to another drunk narrate his whole life.

"We came to...shis island you shee. But it washnt no island, no shir. It wash..."

Balthier sighed. He came for information, not to listen to this old fart spin yarns.

"Yes, yes, I'm sure the goldfish was huge." He interrupted with a wave of his hand. He leaned in closer and said in a low voice. "Now, why don't you tell me a little story about a certain ship that docked here about a month ago. Pirate ship, big one. Lots of cannons. Dragon Skull flag. The Nidhogg. Ring a bell?" The alcohol that warmed his belly goaded him to simply beat the information out of the man. He ignored it. There was a heavy Marine presence here today. Several ships where docked here to resupply on their way to the Grand Line. Much as it chafed at him, he had to lay low.

At mention of the ship, recognition slowly dawned in the grey-haired and balding man's eyes and fear tore through his drunken haze. He paled and the flagon in his hand began to shake. "Ah uh, 'm not s-sure what you mean, young man. M-m' memory 's not what it used to be." He started edging away, his eyes flicking around the room.

Balthier smiled and leaned back as the sweet scent of fear filled the area.

"A-anyway. Need to get home. The missus uh...that is she don't like me stayin out drinkin too late." He tossed a handful of beli on the counter. "Here ya go, this round and the next on me." He scuttled out the door with surprising coordination.

Balthier watched him go over the rim of his flagon. Not an unexpected reaction, though a bit inconvenient. He was hoping the man had been too drunk to put two and two together. He'd deal with him in a moment. But first, since he had been so kind to buy a round...

"Hey! Bartender! Get me some of your top-shelf stuff!"




About an hour later, Balthier came stumbling out of the bar, head buzzing pleasantly. The bar had been a shithole, but the owner really knew his drink. That had been some really good booze. Maybe it was the drink, or maybe his nose was still clogged with all the gag-worthy smells that hung around a seedy bar. Whatever it was, he didn't notice the smell of anticipation and barely constrained bloodlust until there was a click of a pistol and he found himself staring down the bore.

Oh.

He slowly slid his eyes pass the gun to the man holding it. Small wire glasses, plain hair, plain eyes, plain face, five-foot two. Absolutely nothing remarkable about him. Which, in a way, was remarkable. Balthier knew him. "Oh hey hic Taliesin. Is that a gun in your hand or are you just happy to see me?"

"Save it, Syd. By tomorrow, your bounty will be paying off my tab." Several more bounty hunter emerged from their hiding places. At least six on the rooftops with rifles, two brandishing swords and pistols to the north and south, and a big brute grinning and cracking his knuckles squeezed his way out of the bar's doorway behind him. Finally, cowering in the darkness nearby was the same old man who had rushed out earlier.

Balthier calmly straightened and looked around at the assembled mob. "Are these the new hires?" He asked calmly as he pulled off his coat, and folded it over his arm, his movements slow as not to provoke his captor.

Taliesin snorted, sharp eyes following his every more. "In this economy, everyone's looking for part time work. Now, come quietly, or we'll have Marines swarming us in no time. Then we'll have to kill you, and that would be such a pity."

Balthier grinned at him. "The poster does say 'dead or alive' so why not just shoot me and be done with it?"

Taliesin smiled back. "Because I believe in maximizing profit. Two birds with one stone and all that. And, I'll be doing you a favor. So, before we turn you in, how about you tell us everything you know about the Black Dragon pirates and where we might find them."

Balthier barked out a rough laugh. "Thank the gods for the greed of men. If you somehow manage to kill that treacherous worm, Alistair, I'd gladly go with you and sleep peacefully."

Taliesin lowered his gun. "I'm glad you could see reason."

"But. There are some on my crew I still care for. As Captain, I can't let you harm them."

Behind his glasses, the bounty hunter's eyes widened. He brought his pistol up. "Fi-"

Balthier transformed. In a fraction of a second, his body grew in size. Muscles bulged as his body changed shape, his skin rippled and peeled as black and purple scales formed. Horns grew from his head and down his body, tearing though his shirt. Fangs like daggers grew from his jaw, which shifted and stretched as the bones rapidly changed shape. From his back, burst might wings, topped with wicked spears of bone, fully destroying his shirt. A long, sinuous tail swayed from side to side, helping him balance as his legs became digitigraded, ending in massive talons. Each of his fingers lengthened, the nails growing in length until he bore five razor-shape claws.

"-re!"

Guns roared as they unloaded bullets into the monstrous form where the man had been seconds before. Sparks flew as the bullets ricochet harmlessly, though he twitched his head to the side as one quite nearly took him in the eye. It stung, and produced a trickle of hot blood. Balthier wasn't worried about the men. He could easily take on several times their number, especially if they didn't have Haki, as these poor saps clearly didn't.

Taliesin was a different story. The man was a crack shot with any firearm and very very dangerous. He had no devil fruit powers and yet he had taken down scores of pirates who did. Those who underestimated him rarely got a chance to see the error of their ways. He had been hounding after Balthier off and on for nearly three years. The pirate was heartily sick of running into him.

If he stood and fought now, the Marines would be all over them. Worse, there was a very good chance Taliesin would be able to kill him.

He surged forward in a blur of movement, fainted left, then pulled right as another volley exploded in the night. Most of them went clear, save one, which knocked scales from the side of his neck. Taliesin backed up slowly and calmly took aim again.

Balthier ended his dash right next to the old man. "You're coming with me." He leapt into the air, then snached the man in his talons. He screamed in terror as beat of his powerful wings pushed them both toward the sky.

Below, he could hear Taliesin's voice ordering his men not to shoot. They didn't want to accidentally hit the old man he thought with satisfaction. As soon as that thought crossed his head, a sharp pain in his wing followed a gunshot. A small hole, trailing blood appeared in the membrane. Damn that Taliesin. Putting as much force into his wings as possible, he fled into the night.




Once he was reasonably sure he was out of range, Balthier angled his flight toward a precipice. The old man clutched in his claws was still gibbering away. He dropped the man on the edge before landing himself. Quick as a flash, he seized the man by his shirt and held him out over the abyss. "I'm out of time and I'm out of patience. The dragon growled. "Tell me about the Nidhogg or I drop you."

The man struggled futilely. "The Grand Line!" He shouted. "The Grand Line! T-they went to the Grand Line! He said something about stopping in Alabasta! Please that's all I know!" Tears and snot streamed down his face. Balthier shook him once, pops from the seams in his shirt tearing could be heard.

"Why?"

"I don't know. I don't know! I just didn't want to go to that cursed place. Please...have mercy captain."

"No mercy was afforded me when you sided with him and left me on that godforsaken island. So why should I give you any?"

"P-pluheesh...mershy..." He sobbed.

For the briefest second, Balthier seriously considered dropping the poor bastard. Do it. Came the whisper.

But the rage left him. With a careless toss, the threw his former crewmember on the ledge. "Find your own way down." He told him. Then he leapt off the ledge, talking flight and headed back toward town.

Alabasta Kingdom. It was a very long way away. Why was that crazy bastard going to the Grand Line? Could he really be after the One Piece, first hid by Roger, then Luffy? He always did have a fasciation, nay, obsession with those old legends. Always chivvying him to set sail after it. Balthier didn't really see the point. With Marines focused on the Grand Line, pickings were good elsewhere. A man didn't need legendary wealth to be wealthy. Or world wide fame to be notorious.

But that was for another time. For now, his main goal was to catch Alistair and strangle the life from him with his bare hands.

Alabasta




Alabasta, present day.


Balthier crashed-landed on an outcropping of rock. Not his finest moment. He rolled a pace before coming to a stop, his dragon form dropping. He lay there, staring up at the sky, breathing heavily. Flying, he found out, in the Grand Line was risky. It's unpredictable weather and tempestuous seas meant that flying took a lot of effort, severely cutting the distance he could travel. He'd been able to get a ship near Reverse mountain, but as the crew was unwilling to go further, he'd had to fly on his own up the mountain. He'd been prepared with good information and a log poise, but along the way here, he had also managed to get his claws on an eternal pose for Alabasta.

He'd ship-and-island hopped, avoiding Marines and Bounty Hunters alike. This last flight had been the longest yet, over turbulent seas and through tornados and storms. Sleet and hail, lightning and rain, and weirder things: massive gysers out of nowhere, blood-sucking birds, an island that spun like a top. Here on the Grand Line, it seemed to him like logic was a thing that's only purpose in existing was to be soundly ignored.

His thoughts whirled like the birds overhead. He groaned, every muscle in his body aching. He was going to lie here for a while, rest his body.

Then maybe find a drink.

A few minutes later, he found himself standing outside a bar, realizing he was completely broke. "Damn. Change of plans."

He began walking away. He had to find someone who saw where Alistair had gone. More than likely, he had missed him, but it wouldn't hurt to check the docks for the Nidhogg. If she was here, his search would be over. He set his steps through the sandy streets toward the docks.
I admit, I'm a bit of a sucker for these RPs. Got a character concept that I love but never been able to fully play as.

Maybe this will be the one?


Ferrin Astra




???


Tenrou Team - The Magi's story: Shadow of the Past



Ferrin held Mavis' gaze. He saw flickers of what she was feeling, her sadness, her pain. Pain reflected in his own gaze, the pain of having all you love taken from you.

He broke eye contact first. He was suddenly afraid. Afraid she would see through his confidant golden eyes and arrogant swagger. See the man he had become and be disappointed by what she saw.

She might glimpse the anger that drove him. The wild emotions he kept reined in on a tight leash. Cooled and hard on the surface, yet ranging below like old lava.

He forced a dry laugh. "Stars, girl! It is like you have forgotten who you are talking to. That you feel you have to ask is almost insulting. Me, getting involved in, and cleaning up, this mess was a forgone conclusion when I decided to come here." He reached into a pocket and with a flourish, produced an actual silk handkerchief, which he held out to her. "So dry those tears, love, and lets write ourselves a happy ending." He smiled a smile he didn't feel, slitting the throats of his emotions and burying them deep. He had to be strong. Strong for himself, strong for those around him.

The alterative was going mad.

He sank down until he was eye level with her. "What must I do?"




The masked girl said nothing.

She turned her face to study the one who had spoken to her first. There was a brief shift of her shoulders that may have been a shrug, but the cloak made it hard to tell. If she was surprised at Ariel's sudden colorshift, she gave no indication. However, she did tilt her head slowly one way, then another. Something about her body language spoke of puzzlement.

She leaned in uncomfortably close to Ariel, so close she could hear the figure's breath. She tilter he head again, this time seemingly studying Ariel's face from different angles. She stared a moment longer before both girls could hear her gasp. She suddenly backed off a pace as her hands went up in a feeble point at Ariel.

"!" She made a soundless exclamation. "!!!"

The two wizards got the distinct impression she was trying to say something, but could not.

"..!" She tried again. Her hands fell to her sides as she began to look wildly about, suddenly animated. She dropped to her knees, and started frantically scratching in the sand, making breathy noises somewhere between a whine and a pant.

But it was nonsense. Lines and loops, dots and curves haphazardly placed. Here and there were almost recognizable letters, but it was all jibberish. The words wouldn't come. She desperately swept the sand clean and started again.

And again.

And again.

The fourth time, her finger halted above the tossed ground. It began to shake, the girl was trembling. Suddenly in a burst of violence, she started pounding the ground, the frustration practically boiling off her. Disturbingly, the ground began to crack and dust flew up as she struck with superhuman strength.

The tantrum lasted several dozen seconds, before she stopped as abruptly as she had begun. She sank back into a sitting position, and from the sobs and sniffles coming from behind the mask, began to cry. Tears dribbled out from behind the eerily serene face.

She reminded them of a small child, unable to do simple tasks, and easily frustrated.
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