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Current dissertation done. can actually post again. yay.
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The Koopa Troop

wordcount: 1,293 (3+)
Bowser: Level 4 EXP: ////////////////////////////////////////// (26/40)
Bowser Jr: Level 2 (level up! New power: Withdraw) EXP: ////////////////////// (1/20)
Kamek: Level 1 EXP: /////////// (6/10)
Location: Peach’s Castle


Orders and discussion where slowed temporarily as food arrived, much to the delight of everyone involved. Bowser’s turn at the counter-top resulted in the meat stock being decimated as he made off with at least of every fleshy dish available. Even this relative hoard of dishes was not enough however, so Kamek was quickly forced to shrink down the map so that he could instead enlarge Bowser’s meal to a size fit for a king. The map was still available for viewing however, just not at its previously royal scale. It was laid down flat in the middle of the dining table with an implicit food exclusion zone around it. Cling film had also been laid across it for extra protection. The turtle wizard himself set about nibbling his way though a few vegetable kebabs, using his none wand wielding hand to hold the sticks. Jr acquired a simple combination of steaks and pizza, his sadness at being forced to stay quickly forgotten as he dug into them both, his grinning bib seeing plenty of use as he devoured flesh and fast food alike.

Unsurprisingly there where others who had comments about the map. While the royals ate the magikoopa did his best to manage this discussion.

”You two” Kamek pointed to Tora the over-sized hamster and Din the fiery redheaded mage with his kebab ”make good, if opposing, points which I think we can resolve using your” Kamek jabbed his skewer towards the tinkering Balzermate and Ratchet ”Teleporter gizmo. If you can work out the two way transmission or just make more of them we could split into teams to cover more ground and still gather together for fighting the Bosses and other tricky situations or swap out party members who are better at tackling specific areas.” he said, before biting off one of his roasted veggies. He took the time while chewing to think a bit more, vaguely waving the skewer around as he did so.

”Ok. So. Extended plan.” he continued ”We get karts. We get teleports. We stick the teleporters on the karts and either link the parties teleporter karts to each other or make both of them send people to and from Peach’s castle. Depends if you need them to sit still or not as having a static intermediary location means we wouldn't need to coordinate deploying the teleporters as much. The second option also lets us keep people in reserve and not carry everything with us at all times.”

”Make food less of an issue too.” he added, before biting another veggie off of his kabbak. He thought for a few moments of other ways they might set up back and forth transportation while chewing. ”Maybe we could use warp paintings or Jr’s magic graffiti if the teleporters don't work out? Those only go to and from static locations, but it would be better than nothing.” he added

Bowser meanwhile had been occasionally glancing over at the centurion as the warrior made a pigs ass of themselves while doped up on the awesome power of Megadragonbowser. He’d avoided commenting on the fact that the warrior had nabbed the Boss sprite because even he could see that Tora had been right about the danger of having your personality altered drastically by absorbing their power. Not that he would ever admit that, which was the reason he’d been ignoring it.

As the centurion began raving about marching over to the Land of adventure as quickly as possible however, the king could hold his tongue no longer. Between taking bites out of a massive rib of stake he tried to put the upstart his place “YOU JUST WANT TO GET OUT IN FRONT OF THE ARMY TO SNATCH MORE SPRITES! WELL TO BAD, BECAUSE IF ANYONE IS GOING TO LEAD AN ADVANCED FORCE INTO THE LAND OF ADVENTURE IT’S GOING TO BE ME! SO SIT BACK DOWN AND WAIT FOR ME TO FINISHED EATING THIS DELICIOUS FOOD.”

”But sire! What about the karts?” Kamek asked

“Jr’s got that handled, right Jr?” there was a distinct lack of a response “Jr?” the tiny terror’s guardians turned their eyes to the princes’ space at the table, only to find both the plate and high chair set there empty.

”I believe he’s wolfed down his dinner and run off on his mission sire.” Kamek said a little disappointedly, quite sure the lad would suffer an upset stomach as a result.

“See, told you he’d handle it” Bowser responded, with pride that contrasted Kamek’s concern. Then he turned to the human who had introduced himself as Franklin “WELCOME TO MY ARMY. IF YOU’RE DONE EATING THEN GO HELP MY BOY.” he ordered Franklin, pointing him in the direction of the scrap yard. Bowser himself was not even close to done.

Kamek meanwhile added his own opinion in support of Michel’s point ”We really should stick together, or at least nearby to each other, until we have a way of communicating. If you insist at going off before we have the karts at least don’t go much further than the village Michel pointed out. It’ll be near impossible to find you in a timely manner if you end up wandering around the fields beyond.” directing this both at Bowser and the centurion. He very much hoped they would not go together. He could already see how the clashing of their egos would be disastrous for everyone around them. ”There was mention of robots and Rabbids at the scrap yard? Perhaps you could deal with those instead, to make sure our rear is secured?”

The old koopa hoped Bowser Jr wasn't running/getting into trouble with either of those groups.




Jr’s kicked open the front door of the castle and then stepped outside into the sunshine. His belly was full and his body was brimming with energy. The young koopa hopped up onto the stone banister of the bridge in-order to make his way across it. Before him lay the scrapheap that the hero team had passed though only a short while ago. To him however this was no re-tread, but a new place to explore and conquer. As he balanced his way across his non-optimal crossing method he spotted several people he could recruit to do just that. The first was the Link look alike Linkle, who was peering over the side of the bridge and down into the water at the hat wearing kid he’d met up in the Princess’s bedroom. The same kid who’d snubbed him earlier and who he’d subsequently blamed for the whole mess in peach’s room. Beyond them, out in the junkyard itself, he heard the tell-tail sounds of Rabbids mucking about. He’d used the furry menaces once before and it had worked great up until the point where it hadn't and his dad had gotten possessed by some glowing bug bird thing. He’d had to get Mario’s help to free him, and then he’d been grounded, both things that had sucked. Hopefully this time would go better.

Jr continued his way across the bridge, pausing only to tell the two girls that: ”You work for my dad? Then you work for me and we have karts to build!” before he hopped up from the banister onto what remained of the archway the engineer had been camping on.

He hammered the butt of his over-sized paint brush against the stone a few times to get the Rabbids attention and then yelled at the assorted bunny people. ”Hay you lazy Rabbids! It’s your boss speaking so listen up! We’re going to scavenge the biggest, fastest, most butt-kicking karts form the pile of junk so we can fix them up and go on a rampaging road trip all across this messed up word!”


The Koopa Troop

wordcount: 2,608 (3+)
Bowser: Level 4 EXP: ////////////////////////////////////////// (23/40)
Bowser Jr: Level 1 EXP: //////////// (8/10)
Kamek: Level 1 EXP: /////////// (3/10)
Location: Peach’s Castle


Bowser found himself back in the foyer, having been kicked out of the kitchen by the tiny angry chef lady. Technically he’d excused himself to go look for his son as per her suggestion, but mainly he’d just wanted to get away from the fiery eyed cook without admitting that she’d scared the bejesus out of him. Still, she did have a point. Jr was probably somewhere in here if his doppelganger words had held any truth and Kamek was also around according to Geno.

Fortunately he did not have to look far for them as fate decided to contrive a reunion right there and then. Kamek, Bowser’s chief magikoopa, adviser and foster father all in one, showed up just moments later as he exited the dungeon now found beneath the castle. The old magi-koopa looked rather confused at having found himself in peach’s castle, but perked up visibly at the sight of his King/son.

“KAMEK! There you are!” Bower said as his loyal servant hurried over to bow before him ”Sire! I’m at your service, though I’m afraid to admit I’m not to sure what is going on. I came to in my laboratory that was filled with a mess of useless junk. Then after i cleaned up I found that the lab was in a dungeon that's also under peach’s castle. I have no idea how it got there. Did we move here recently? I fear my age is catching up with me.” Kamek looked rather worried, as was to be expected of someone who thought they might be suffering from the onset of dementia.

“No, no. your fine. The whole memory fuzziness your getting is pretty normal” Bowser partially explained

Before Kamek could ask for clarification however Bowser spotted someone very important coming down the stairs while carrying a map and looking rather disgruntled.

“Jr!” Bowser shouted jubilantly at the sight of his son, giving the boy a far more emotional reunion than he had his adoptive father as he stomped over, picked Jr up and hugged him against his shoulder. Jr for his part was a little surprised by the intensity of the greeting, but got into it regardless, hugging the king back and accompanying the embrace with a a jubilant ”Papa!”

The embrace lasted only a few moments before Bowser put his son done again, telling him that “I’m so glad your ok!”

”Uh, you too?” Jr said just a little confused by the implication that he had been in danger before adding ”Did I miss a lot after the army of hands fight? My memories a bit fuzzy after that.”

”Please Sire, it would be very helpful if you filled us in as to what is going on.” Kamek said to Bowser after he caught up, adding his weight to the princes’ question in a hope to get it answered.

“Oh right. Plot summary time. So while we were attacking the mushroom kingdom we got interrupted by this call to go fight an army of master hands. Smash-bros business. Always weird.” Bowser began explaining

”Dad I know this already” Jr butted in

“Yeah but Kamek doesn't. I’ll get to the new stuff soon. So turns out there's loads of hands and they were controlled by a big winged orb thing called Galeem and… you remember how I told you about that blue guy with the wings that controlled the master hand last time? Tattoo or something?”

”Tabuu was it not? He stole parts of the world using subspace bombs and stuck them together into a great maze. Has this Galeem done the same?” Kamek said, remembering the debriefing he had had the king give when he had gotten back fro that particular endeavor. He’d had to go do a lot of follow up research afterwards because the king’s storytelling ability was rather lacking.

“Kinda? But they’ve done the same thing thing using everything ever, blasting it all and then sticking it all back together however they want. Galeem’s also taken over the minds of everyone ever. Makes them more aggressive mostly, but they're also perosnaly empower or controlling a few. They've got these 13 bosses stopping us from just going over and smashing them right away coz their powering some magic shield or something. So I’ve gotten this slap dash army of, bleh, heros working for me to take them all down. We already beat up some doppelganger of me to free this place, and you, of Galeem’s power, so now we only gotta take down 12 more. Then we can kick Galeem’s butt, put everything back to where it belongs, and then finally we can go home and get back to business as usual.”

”I see. This is all is most concerning. Thank you for this explanation sire. May I ask who told you all this?” Kamek asked, sussing out immediately that the king would have never done the research or investigation necessary to figure out some of these details

“Some Guy called the Master of Masters. Wears a black leather robe and you cant see his face. Carries a massive key. Never shuts up. You can't miss him.”

”That’s such a dumb name. Who does this ‘Master’ guy think he is?” Jr said. He’d sat down on the stairs and zoned out for a lot of the explanation until hearing the Master’s name. Everyone nodded, agreeing it was a pretentious name. Only one of them actually knew the word pretentious however.

”I’ll keep an eye out for this ‘Master’ then. Do you know where these other 12 bosses are Sire?” Kamek asked.

“Nope! No idea where anything is in this mixed up place.” The king admitted.

”Hey dad? Maybe this will help?” Jr said, pulling the map out from under his arm and passing it to Bowser. The Koopa king unrolled it and then squinted at the tiny (compared to him) piece of parchment. “Hmmm. Yeah I can’t read this. Kamek, deal with it.” he said, tossing it over to the magi-koopa, who unfurled it and began to study it.

“I got some other things to explain anyway. Also gifts!” Jr, who had been a touch dejected by his father's reaction to the map perked up visibly at the mention of gifts “These are sprites” he explained, retrieving the jar containing the two bloopers from his pockets “You can crush them to get items and weapons, or absorb them to get power, knowledge or to use them as minions. Here, try squeezing these and see what you get.” he said, tipping the two sprites into the princes waiting hands. As Jr eagerly crushed the two bloopers Kamek, who had paid more attention to this explanation than the map, noticed the rest of the contents of Bowser’s pockets, namely the numerous Koopa and Goomba Sprites.

”Sire are those...?” he asked with concern

“Ah. Yeah. Galeem makes people super aggressive. They attacked so I, you know… I’m glad beating the faker freed you guys. I found out later you can also free people using 'friend hearts' which I would have done for you, though you need to weaken people before you use those. Still, even these sprites aren't gone for good, you can do this” Bowser snapped his fingers and caused Sledge, Mallet and Heel to appear before him. The trio bowed, Heel with far less sincerity than his comrades. “Can’t bring that many of them back, but a few can be used as these ‘Strikers’” he explained, before ordering them to “ go collect your stuff while your out!”

As the trio scampered away Bowser plucked a Goomba sprite out of his pocket and turned to his son “Jr! Catch this one and try and turn this into a ‘striker’ like those three. Just order them to appear and they’ll obey you.”

Jr caught the Goomba sprite and looked at a little disappointed ”Just one Goomba?” he asked

“Yeah I know, but that's how it works apparently. I mean the hammer bros came in a pair but…” Bowser began but Jr had mostly ignored this explanation and had instead run up to his father's side. There they jumped up to the pocket containing the Goombas and yelled at them ”Hey you lazy Goombas! Quit free loading my dads pockets and get out here!”

Much to everyone's surprise this worked, the minions’ sprites surging out of the pocket and into Jr. ”Wow, wow, wow!” Jr cried in shock, his arms spinning, before falling down to the floor.

“Jr!” ”Young master!” his father and grandfather cried, concerned for the boy’s safety. Jr for his part shook his head for a moment to clear it and then snapped his fingers like his father had while calling out ”Goomba Swarm, Chain Chomp formation!” causing an absolute tone of Goombas to appear before him in the same manner that strikers did. The stunty monsters looked a little confused for a moment before they all bowed before the royal family.

“Ha Ha! That's my boy! Breaking all the rules like a proper villain” Bowser congratulated Jr, before telling him: “Now do the same with the Koopas.”

A few moments and dozens of sprites later the Goombas where joined by an equally large band of Koopas. All where arrayed before Jr and his proud father. “Great work Jr. now, three more things, First, Strikes can be de-summoned in the same way as they’re summoned.” he explained and then paused to let Jr try it.

”Koopa troop! Goomba Swarm. Dismissed!” Jr ordered, causing the minion army to poof back into sprite form and zoom back to him.

“Good. Secondly they have a limited summoning time, so only bring them out when you know you need to use them. Finally, strikers can't die, they can only be forcibly un-summoned. if their time's up or they die you have to wait a bit before you can use them again.” Bower said, finishing his explanation.

”Got it Papa.” ”Very good Sire.” his subordinates/family responded.

“Now. That more than enough tutorializing for one day. Peach is making dinner for everyone and I am starving. They must be nearly done in the kitchen by now.” Bowser said, before turning and making his way back to the place he had just been kicked out of.

“HAY. YEAH DON’T WORRY WE’RE JUST GOING OVER THERE” Bowser said as he pointed over to the dining table to head off any mama rage. He shuffled over to the mostly empty part of the room, followed by Kamek and Jr after shot their mandatory antagonistic glares at Mario.

They all found seats apart from Kamek, who now had finally taken time to inspect the map now that the sprite explanation was over.

”This is an excellent find young master.” he told Jr as he read it.

”Yeah it is!” Jr espoused before glanced over at Peach. ”I saved it from Peaches room. Some kid in a hat was making a mess up there, but I chased her off and got the map she was trying to steal first. Then I, uh, held onto it for safekeeping.” he said, shunting the blame for the mess he’d made onto the hat-girl that had ignored him. No one in the koopa clan called him out on this bluff.

”Sire let me show you this at a more you-appropriate scale” Kamek said, before before waving his wand at the map. A brief burst of magic took hold, causing the map to expand many times over in size so that it ended up needing to be leaned against the dining room wall of the Kitchen. He ensured it was well clear of any fire hazards and visible to anyone else who might join them at the table.

”So.” Kamek said, who mounted his broom and then flew up to hover next to the map so he could point things out as he spoke of them ”You said there were 13 bosses correct Sire? Well there are 14 named locations on this map. So it is probably safe to say that each one has a boss in them, baring one. Have you been to any of these places yet sire? Other than the castle of course.”

“Yeah. The 1-1 place down there. Yeesh. It's pretty titchy looking on the map and it took us hours to walk and fight through all that. This is going to take a while.” Bowser explained and complained simultaneously.

”and no Boss’s were encountered there?” Kamek asked

Bowser shook his head “Just a mini boss. Not the same power level as the fake me.”

”Excellent. Then that's one boss per named location other than 1-1. Hopefully inside notable landmarks on the map like this temple” Kameck indicated to the structure in the Sand Swept Desert ”or this castle” he indicated to the large structure at the north of the Swordlands.

“All right.” Bowser said, not quite following why he was being told this.

”So we have destinations, now all we need to do is chart a course too them.” Kamek explained.

“Which is going to take forever” Bowser groaned

”We’ll figure something out. Maybe we can get ships from the Edge of the Blue?” he suggested, pointing at what might be a port found just beyond the dark forest ”It also means that once you’ve beat the boss of a zone we more or less know that we can ignore any unexplored parts of a region, at least when it comes to our primary objective, which should save us a lot of time.”

Meanwhile the King’s sprites had also returned, lugging the various equipment they had dropped earlier through the kitchen. Sledge and Heel dumped the mostly empty minigun and Slice Cutter in a corner, along with the deceased Zer0’s Synapse and then disappeared, but Mallet remained for a few moments longer.

While Kamek and Bowser went over the map Mallet approached Bowser Jr and presented the Necro smasher to him, saying “Prince Bowser Jr, I think you might like this?”

”A wooden mallet? Really? At least give me one of your metal ones!” Jr complained, looking at the wooden hammer with disdain.

“Ah, but your scariness, I believe it can repair damaged machines just by hitting them, as well as acting as a weapon. You being so fond of of them I thought…” he explain before the mallet was snatched from his hands while he was still speaking.

”Why didn’t you say so in the first place!” Jr admonished the unfortunate hammer bro, while doing a few practice swings. ”Shame I don't have anything to use it on, like a cool mech” he complained

“Well. There is a whole junk yard outside… maybe there's something out there?” Mallet suggested..

”Junkyard. Yeesh. What's kinda junk is in it?” Bowser Jr asked

“Karts mainly” Malet admitted. Jr was not really impressed.

Kamek however seemed interested enough to interjected himself into this conversation. ”Karts did you say? Racing Karts?”

“Yeah there’s a loaded of them all stacked up. Would be real useful if they worked now that I think about it. Stop us having to trudge through all of that.” Bowser said, vaguely waving at the blown up map.

”Then I’m gonna go and fix those karts!” Jr announced. When he attempted to run off to do just that however he was by his father.

“Hang on hang on. First off there's Angry robots and Raving Rabbids out there so it’s dangerous to go running out there alone. Second of all dinner’s almost done. Eat first,adventure and tinkering second. ok?” he said in a fatherly tone

”Yes papa” Jr said disappointingly

“Good lad.” Bowser said, gently ruffling the boy’s hair, before turning his attention to the hero's hanging around the room and pointing at the map. “YOU LOT. WE’RE GOING TO FIX UP SOME RIDES SO WE CAN TRAVEL THROUGH ALL THAT FASTER! SO EAT UP AND THEN GEAR UP FOR SOME BACKTRACKING.”

Mallet proofed himself just a few moments later while Kamek landed and put aside his broom so he could take a seat at the table. He left the map scaled up however, meaning it was still available for inspection by the others.
I put together a wee sheet for Kamek for when I'm using him.



Captain Piper

level: 3
XP ////////////////////////////// (23/30)
word count: 445
day/time: day 3 - evening
Location: The Forbidden Lands Temple Top
Tag: @Holy Soldier


Unfortunately for Piper her attempt and initiating conversation did not quite as smoothly as she had hoped. Rather than responding to her questioning the mysterious woman grabbed her child and stared a her with fear in her eyes. Then the boss showed up, which was bad enough on its own, but it also caused the woman to retreat behind the rock she had been seated on. She did however seem to be at least vaguely interested in talking, if only because she didn’t exactly have any other options. The woman asking her how she had gotten here.

”I Climbed... oh. If you mean how we got to the forbidden land then we were transported here via a portal from Platform City. We’ll be leaving the same way if that’s what your interested in”

In order to avoid seeming threatening Piper made no moves other than glancing back at Boss in a mix of surprise and annoyance that he had somehow managed to get up here so quickly when she had had to make a painstakingly slow climb up here. She was also just a touch annoyed that he was more interested in the horse than the people she’d found.

”Hay Boss” she greeted him begrudgingly, before adding ”Yeah I wasn't expecting to find one up here neither. I ain’t got no Idea how she got the horse up here in the first place. Or how you got up here so fast. Please don’t tell me there's some super convenient stairs, ladders or an elevator that I missed?”

Horse and temple ascension talk was put on the back burner however, as the woman spoke again, saying that she would not let them “take him away” from her. Piper attempted to assure the woman that they meant no harm

”We ain’t here to take your kid miss, nor your horse, seeing as we ain’t kidnappers and there's already a bunch of free horses running around downstairs. Right Boss?” She said calmly, before reiterating ”We only here looking for answers to some questions about this place and the mutagen virus. None of us are here to take your loved ones and if anyone else happens to shows up to do so I’ll shoot them myself.”

Piper had a robin hood esque thing going on (not that she knew who robin hood was, but if she had she would have definitely liked his story) so she wasn’t going to go stealing horses from single mothers. Nor did she like the implication that there were people around who did want to take the horned boy away from his mother, so she was being entirely truthful when she said she’d shoot whatever slavers or scum wanted to take him.

wordcount: 267 (+1)
Level 4 EXP: ////////////////////////////////////////// (20/40)
Location: Peach’s Castle: Kitchen


“WHAT NO I AM FINE” Bowser respond to his attacker’s shows of concern while he picked himself off the floor. Again. Then after listening to him ramble for a bit the king told him that:

“YEAH GALEEM KINDA MESSED US ALL UP, SO WE’RE GOING TO MESS THEM UP. YOU UP FOR THAT? THEN YOUR WORKING FOR ME, BOWSER, THE KOOPA KING! GOT IT? GOOD. BECAUSE I’M STARVING”

Having sorted everything out perfectly the king tuned and followed the hamster towards the kitchen, doing nothing but raise an eyebrow at the dejected robot girl coming the opposite direction. He licked his fingers and tried to make his hair more presentable as he waited for her to pass, before barely managing to scrap his way through the door frame. Inside he found his love, worst enemy and a bunch of other nobodies. Fortunately Peach seemed to be more interested in teaching the argumentative poppy how to cook than engage Mario, who was obviously excited to see her, in conversation.

“HELLO BEAUTIFUL” He greeted Peach, before also greeting mama “ALSO HELLO NICE CHEF LADY” because even the king knew it was bad idea to be rude to someone who’s going to be making you food.

Bowser attempted to lean on a counter coolly, broke it, and then stood with his arms crossed casually leaning against a wall. As a result he just generally got in the way of everyone trying to make food.

“SHAME YOU MISSED THE FLIGHT EARLIER, BECAUSE LET ME TELL YOU, I WAS PRETTY AWESOME. REALLY SHOWED THAT WANNA BE WHO’S THE BEST ME. I.E. ME OBVIOUSLY” he gloated/flirted




Location:
wordcount: 1,085 (+2)
Level 1 EXP: ////////// (2/10)
Location: Peach’s Castle - Upper floors


When Bowser jr came to his senses he found himself in an unfamiliar room surrounded by unfamiliar playthings. He took a few moments to run though how he might have gotten here.

He remembered waking up and moping around his room because he had been grounded after the whole rabbit fiasco. Then his father called him from the moon because he wanted picked up after another failed kidnapping attempt. After whining about how upset he was about not being able to be the ring barer for his wedding, despite the fact that the ring was apparently six times his size, he had guilt tripped papa into un-grounding him and also into letting him plan their next scheme. Said planning had taken about 3 minutes because he was just that good a planner. He’d gone to the moon, picked up his dad and then he’d gotten a matching suit from the bunnies while the koopaling went and stole a weather control rod from some science nerd with swirly glasses. Then they’d gone to peach's castle, fought Mario for a bit before they were interrupted. Gone to a cliff to fight some floating hands and then got blasted only to end up here.

With all these cool toys!

Jr more or less forgot about the strangeness of his situation and instead got down to the business of discover for the second time all the neat things in the room playroom. In only a few minutes he had assembled a replica of peach's castle out of building blocks and was playing a game of kidnap the princess using every single amiibo as the pieces.

”ha ha ha, I have you now Mario!” said jr to Mario, who was dangling precariously from the battlements of peaches castle.

”nooooo!” cried peach as her hero was dislodged from his perches by a swift impact of jr’s base to his hand. He plummeted to the floor with a ”mama mia!”

Then Bowser came in along, scooped up peach and congratulated him ”GOOD JOB SON. I AM SO PROUD. LET’S GO GET ICE CREAM TOGETHER!”.

”Yay”Bowser jr cheered in response, but before the amiibos could go off to get ice cream together he heard something going on next door, which brought his attention back to his unfamiliar surroundings.

”huh, what was that noise?” the asked nobody in particular before carefully stepping their way through the mess of toys and pressing his ear to the wall to listen. Next door he could hear somebody making a minor ruckus as they pulled open drawers and tapped on walls. This was, naturally, very suspicious.

Jr glanced around the room looking for a weapon having realized that he might in fact be in danger. Several moments of rummaging in toy chests later and he came up with a large paintbrush about as tall as he was. The Gaddbrush might have served more often as a sports bat than as a weapon at this point, but it was still a faithful weapon none the less. A few practice swings left a familiar m on the wall with a pair of umlauts on top, painted in colorful, and dangerous, goop. Jr tapped the hard end of the paintbrush against the floor and nodded to himself before turning and making his way out of the playroom.

Outside was a more familiar sight, a hallway that looked to be part of peach's castle. The small dragon crept through this hall till they reached the door to the room that was in the middle of being pillaged. Jr pulled his bib up over his mouth, plastering a permanent toothy grin across his face, before he booted the door open and stepped inside, paintbrush brandished like a droopy spear.

”rawr” he roared adorably, announcing his presence to a young human girl who was currently rummaging around in a chest of drawers. Jr almost immediately recognized the room as Peach’s which meant that the hat kid was rummaging through contained… jr gasped at how scandalous the situation he had just come across was.

”Are you stealing the princess's socks?!” the both aghast and intrigued prince asked after pulling his bib back down.

After a few moments of awkward silence he then added excitedly ”Can I help!?”





@Lugubrious



The soul was running out of time.

The flames of the pyres drew all lost souls towards their ravenous maws, their appetite insatiable. Untold numbers of souls had been consumed already. First the broken and frayed souls had been consumed, those who barely had selves anymore. Ruined by the void, by their arrival, their long gone deaths or banishments none would ever know, for they had not the will to resist the pull of annihilation. The weak and despondent had followed soon after. Then they had been joined by a slow trickle of new souls made from the dead that had grown into a stream and then a gushing river. These pushed the old souls into the flames while the flames themselves continued to pull them in.

Now only the strongest remained. Those who raged against the dying light, who pushed aside the torrent of souls and clawed their way away from the flames. Yet in the end none could truly escape death for where inches were gained as feet were lost.

The soul could feel the heat at its back as its limbs struggled futility against the current and yet still it fought on regardless. Here a tree was tossed into the flames to give it speed, there a parrot, a dolphin, a Selka, a fellow void soul. It hated that it did this, that it was sacrificing others to preserve itself. It hated this place that had robbed it of the power of the void. It hated how it didn't fit properly in the space here.

Yet it had purpose. A mission. One far more divine than anything in this cursed place.

It was made as an observer. It was her ever watchful eye and yet it had lost track of the very person it was supposed to watch over.

The other souls had been pulled into this place. Azura had clawed her way here just as the void soul now clawed it way away from the flames, though while she had unintentionally saved those it cast aside while it instead doomed them. It had followed the old tyrant as she fought her way through the tide only to be separated from her by this place’s master, tossed aside and then put in line to be killed by that damnable burning beast head. It’s only salvation now lay in Azura, a being that didn't even know of its existence, nor its vital importance to her.

She had entered this realm while death was not present and had tired, and failed, to save all who were to be committed to the flames. At the time it dare not tamper with the mental construct that had been enshrined in the woman’s mind to greatly, to force her to notice it and save it, for it dared not medal with the work of its own creator more than it had been intended to. It had however made a link and had made some miniscule adjustments to compensate for the fact that its charge now had a body again. Memories had been bleeding out. If the dam broke completely it could be catastrophic. So while it had had time it had adjusted the settings on the construct, letting it be more active so that it would, hopefully, nudge her into doing what needed to be done.

Alas, it still remain, and yet it saw now that death was once again absent. Here was an opportunity Azura could grasp if only she knew it existed. It used its power, to reach down and out to the construct in her mind for but a second, slipping ever closer to the flame when it did so, the exertion taking its toll even to send such a simple massage.

Hurry




Hurry

Azura shook her head in response, trying to sake free from the otherworldly feeling that had slipped over her brain for just a moment. She was not controlled or commanded, but her thought process was none the less shunted of course to a slightly different line of thinking.

She’d been following the Alma’s trail towards the coast of Atokhekwoi where they seemed to have found another sentient race when the effect had struck her. She had been going to investigate each new race one by one. But did she really have time?

She went to find Luis instead.

The great whale was found on the coast of Atokhekwoi closest to the Ihokhetlani camp. He had removed his armor, which floated idaly above the shoreline while the eclipse whale himself was further out in the water. Varios curios Cetaceans froliced around the titan of their kind, filling the ocean with song as they played in the waters of the bay Luis was bathing in.

Azura landed on the back of the armor construct that he had named Bruna and then waved a wing in his general direction.

”Hello. How was your meeting with the stone god” he whistled, his tone lacking the sullen edge it had had when last they spoke.

“It went well I think” she called back as Luis carefully emerged from the ocean watters without dsturbing the frolicing whales and dolphins. She was glad he had found some way of recharging his energy “I think their a good person for the most part. They are also an adorable wee crab. We talked about the problem and he said he’d help once he got proof, which is both a shame and also good I suppose. They also reminded me that one of the gods, Anzillu, has the aspect of demons, a word that sets off alarm bells in my mind apparently, and that they made a.. Self replicating flesh eating bacteria that leaked out of their sphere. Which sounds bad.”

”Apparently sets of alarm bells?” Luis asked, emphasizing the apparently part before thinking for a bit more and adding ”Oh. Huh. I see what you mean… Odd”

”Yes... It is… ” Azura said falteringly

There was a long silence as the constructs did their best to stop any peering behind the curtain

”Demons must be really bad then. Shame he didn't want to help right away too” Luis said finally.

”yes. On both counts. It’s particularly a shame because I think we had best get on with the invasion lan as soon as possible. There seems to be a lot of mortals around, the Alma have gone all over the place. And I fear that the issue with not being able to convince Ohannakeloi will raise its head when I go meet them.”

”Oh. ok.” Luis responded, ”I’ve been kind of hoping we could get this done sooner rather than latter” Azura opened her beak but Luis predicted her question ”I was going to says so earlier, but you’ve been occupied with the unexpected mortal situation. So. are we ready to go now or…?”

“There are three final things we need for the invasion of the sky pyres. First is a way to clear away the arid smoke that would choke the life from any who set foot in it, namly you, anyone aceal is bringing and the Alma. Also, i need a way to get everyone/thing we need there in the first place.” Azura said “For those two I’ll make a construct that will allow me to command and control the air over a much larger area and one that can do so for me even if I am otherwise engaged. It can create a safe bubble of air that can both keep us safe from the pyres and that can also be launched up to them.”

Her explanation made she set to work, a wordless melody leaving her beak which spread out before her and formed into Luftstone segments. These massive stones where abstract shapes with the odd hole bored in them that. When the wind blew through those holes it caused them emitted a singular note. Individually their shape and sound where simple, but as more and more formed they coalesced into a singular whole. The sounds of whistles, pipes, trumpets, horns and other wind instruments all emanated from the stone and gradually came together to harmonise harmonise as the construct took shape. Its final form was one roughly humanoid framed by a pair of static wings. Its arms had a second set of four limbs that drifted freely around the primary ones. It’s legs where narrow and ended in a pair of heel like spikes rather than feet. Its head was nestled in a massive armored coller, out of which it started with a singular soul gem based eye. It was armed with a pair of crescent bladed glaives which it gripped with all four of its limbs.

“I dub thee the Titan of Winds” she announced

All of this was made up of jagged stone plates and frames though which the wind howled, playing a symphony as it did that harmonised with Azura’s song. Together the titan and goddess sung into being thousands of new Alma to which she granted a new ability.


Bring truth and wipe away the lies
For soon we shall travel heaven's skies
No more shall souls be torn asunder
For realm of death we will plunder
There all shall witness, all shall see
The foul depths of death’s cruelty”


As she finished singing the alma began to project small holographic screens from their forehead soul gems, displaying a thousand different angles of what they could see and hear. Mostly, this ment each other and Azura. Then there was a rapid switching of images as they began to project one another's sight until all showed a single perspective, one that very nicely framed Azura, the new construct and Luis with the gathering of sea mammals swimming in the background. Azura took a few moments to admire herself before turning to Luis

“And these will let us inform all of the mortals at once of the danger and our plan to help them” she explained, the birds all quietly echoing her as they kept recording

”With the speech we wrote. Like those crows we met.” Luis noted

“Exactly, but not just that. We can also show them the sky pyres as we assaulted them. Then they will be no doubt remaining that Katharsos is a murderous tyrant.” she said sounding rather delighted in her cunning despite the fact that she had been instantly caught plagiarizing K’nells idea of storytelling birds.

”That’s good… I’m turning them off now tough. Because hearing everything repeated like that is rather annoying” Luis said before shutting off Alma tv with his mind.

“oh. Ah yes. I suppose it is a bit.” she said before flapping over and landing between the shoulders of the new construct on what was clearly a deliberately placed pertch “Right then. Shall we be off to meet up with Aceal?”

”Is she ready?” Luis asked as the three giant flyers headed towards the nearest tall mountain to re-enter the blue. Most of the Alma followed, but some spread out across the world to find their fellow avians. They would pass on the new power to the others so that all would be ready for Azura’s announcement.

“Maybe. Maybe not. If not then we can always help her get ready.” she says, before reaching out with her mind to contact Aceal.





wordcount: 528 (+1)
Level 4 EXP: ///////////////////////////////////////// (19/40)
Location: Peach’s Castle: Throne Room


Bowser’s retort to being called childish died in his throat as his double did, the explosion of the treacherous tyrent’s corpse blasting him and the others away. He fell to the ground with an oof while the mote of light they had been arguing over was blown away. Bowser groaned and picked himself up off the floor again for the umpteenth time as the explosion seemed to continue in a non destructive fashion, turning into a wave of purification that swapped through the halls, wiping way Galeem’s influence. As he dusted himself off Bowser was rather glad that this meant that he probably wouldn’t have to fight his family in the same way the heros had had to fight their friends outside.

Bowser would have been furious over the Centurion’s subsequent thievery of his rightful prize if he had noticed him take it occur. Fortunately for everyone involved he could not take his eyes off of the person who came walking down the stairs a few moments after Megadragonbowser’s curse upon her kingdom was lifted.

She was beauty, she was grace, she left a love stuck expression on Bowser’s stupid face

Bowser entirely misinterpreted the look of hope that showed on peach’s face when she saw he was not his double as a display of affection rather than relife that the other him was gone. A part of him, an almost instinctive on at this point, took this misinterpreted signal of interest and insisted that he whisk her away (read:kidnap) her at once so that they could be together again. It wasn’t his brains feeble attempts at pointing out how stupid an idea that this was at the moment, both because there where dozens of heroes around him a the moment and the fact that he would be instantly putting himself back in her bad books, that he that stopped him from acting on his heart's reckless impulses, but rather his stomach. Peach’s cooking was the stuff of legends and the offer of a feast, combend with the fact that he had had nothing but a super shroom to eat since he woke up let the king’s stomach come out as the master of Bowser’s decision making process for the time being. His heart graciously admitted defeat, knowing its day would come again soon enough, while his brain went off to sulk about the fact that it was getting ignored again.

He turned to follow his love like a lost puppy, only to be kicked in the face moments later by some beach hair bellend in a black outfit who’s arrival he had failed to notice, the king having only had eyes for peach right up until the moment that he hit the floor again.

Having been knocked out of his loving tance the downed bowser turned to look at Gene as best he could from his compromised position. Noticing that they appeared to be free of Galem’s power he jabbed a bright glowing claw of his mecha-mitt in the general direction of his attacker and demanded to know “WHO IN THE BLAZES ARE YOU SUPPOSED TO BE!” rather than just trying to incinerate them on the spot.


Naija

level: 6 XP ////////////////////////////////////////////////// (49/60)
wordcount: 527
day/time: Day Three - Evening
Location: Helbard floor 1
Tagging: @Dawnrider @Zarkun @Lugubrious@Tenma Tendo@Holy Soldier


Naija flopped out of her shell and into a room on the Halberd‘s first floor. Not that she knew that was where she was. She panted as she pushed herself up right, the trip having left her short of breath, and then hoisted herself into the air with her wings.

“Never again” she swore before trying to get a grasp of her situation.

Looking around she realised she had no idea where on the ship she was, or where anyone else was for that matter. What she did know was that she was currently in a supply closet, as various cleaning supplies like mops, brooms, soap and buckets littered its various shelves and also, as a result of her violent arrival, the floor. It’s walls made of cold uncaring steel lit by a low red light. Poking her head out of the closet door she discovered that this was the aesthetic of the corridors outside as well, which consisted of a fairly long tunnel with doors at each end and number of rooms or corridors branching off of it on either side. There was no-one around. Her only company was the mess of cleaning supplies behind her and endless blaring siren that heralded the hero’s arrival. Naija, unaware that any that the red light and noisy alarm where not the usual state of affairs however and thought instead that this was the ship’s natural state. She notched its intact capture down several pegs on her internal priority chart as a result. She would not like to live here that was for sure. Once she got use to the alarm her ears could pick up other sounds around her and from them it seemed that those that did live on the ship did seem to be around, even if they were not in view at the moment.

The heavy cleaning of metal on metal that would turn out to be the Heavy Lobster’s footsteps echoed fro somewhere out there in the spiderweb of corridors. Those sounds weren't coming straight for her fortunately. What did seem to be coming towards her, at least gradually, was the rapid fire footsteps of what sounded like dozens of chatty individuals, their nattering only faintly detectable and impossible to comprehend with all the other sound blaring through the metal halls.

Naija had little interest in engaging whatever was out there alone and was far more concerned about the wellbeing of the rest of the team regardless. As a result Naija flapped her way up to the ceiling of the corridor she was in in a token attempt at staying out of sight and then set about traveling along it perpendicular to the wall the shell’s had hit in search of any other shells that had hit it while doing her best to avoid the loud clanking sound or smaller crew members. If she had them get close she would avoid them by taking detours around them or ducking into vents, closets or rooms if that would take her away from her intended search path.

If/whens eh found someone she’d greet them with a friendly, if quiet “Hello! Good to see you are ok.”


&







To say that Ohannakeloi was perturbed would be an understatement, in fact to say he was feeling any singular emotion at the moment would be quite the understatement.

Out in the western mountains Ohannakeloi stood on top of a mountain, or more accurately he stood on a thin layer of rock hiding the Buajaoi on top of a mountain. The serenity of the landscape held little for him at that moment for he had been getting disturbing prayers. First one from Ihokhe, off on his great mission about his encounter with another god and the rather unpleasant news to be learned of there, and then a rather short one in the main camp of the Ihokhetlani, the goddess Azura would be looking for him. So here he was, and he had no idea of what to say or even what would come next.

Ohannakeloi was not sure how he felt even now, the destruction of souls was worrying yes, but he had seen another worrying thing, the leakage from that realm of Anzillu. Ohannakeloi could not feel that there must be good reason for all that. They were divinites all together in this purpose of this world, surely the others could see that. Perhaps he should have payed more attention to his fellow divines before heading off into the world, interacted more, but there was nothing to be done about that past now, only to the future. It should not take long for another divine to find him, after this meeting perhaps he could think about such things more or take appropriate action.

From the direction of the Ihokhetlani camp she came, preceded by a gentle breeze and arriving basked in the light of her feathers. She was alone. Upon spotting him the rapidly approaching divine called out to him. “Hello there Ohannakeloi! I hope I am not interrupting but I was in the area and though it might be a good opportunity to speak with you in person.”

“Azura! You do not know how glad I am to see you, I have heard prayers of Ihokhe and others telling me of what you have told the Ihokhetlani.” Ohannakeloi felt some resolve from his turmoil of emotions, he was glad to be able to talk to another in a similar state and being as himself.

She banked round as she slowed, comin in for a landing just a bit of the way away, her decelerating flaps kicking up dust that would have struck him had she come in head on. Large talons gripped stone, iridescent wings were folded to her side and then the Goddess turned to face him.

“We must talk, we both have great deal to say but tell me first, how are you?”

“I’m doing well all things considered. Progress is being made and that's always something to be happy about. It’s all been so very hectic since the moment we all took our first breaths after the eternity in the Void, so I’m glad someone filled you in already on my current task. I’ll be taking some steps to hopefully stop me having to repeat myself over and over in future. We’ll have to see how that works out.” she said, before stopping herself and refocusing on Ohannakeloi “But enough about me. How are you Ohannakeloi? You’ve certainly been busy, that I can plainly see.”

“I’ve never been better, I’m glad the Ihokhetlani have turned out so well, Galbar seems sufficiently stable as the initial issues have settled somewhat, and Atokhekwoi is filling out nicely thanks to some other works, haven’t been back east to see what is there yet. There is still much to do and make, much more yes, but it will be all the better now that there are more to appreciate it all no?”

Azura nodded “You certainly made them well. Sturdy, self sufficient, and with the freedom to choose their own purpose. I also picked up the impression that their, ah, exuberant praise they seem to shower the divine with was more of a defense mechanism against those who take that sort of thing very seriously than a mandated behavior? Which is good in my opinion. I haven't had a chance to see much of this continent so far, this is the first time I‘ve ventured this far south. Who has been helping you, if I may ask? It’s always nice to hear about gods cooperating for once.” she said

“The Ihokhetlani are being fair and cautious, as a defense mechanism I do not know about that. I do not know who has helped either, these forests came and I know not who made them, as did some different kinds in the northwest, someone else but who I did not see. Bit of a shame that it covers up a lot of the good stone but it is no harm.”

“Ah I see” she responded, a touch embarrassed. “It seems I misinterpreted something Hase said then. My mistake. Anyway, it is shame you did not have a chance to meet the visiting gods, but I’m glad they left a positive mark on this land.”

“Indeed it is a great thing when the gods work together, although I must say, you have accomplished some great creations of your own?” Ohannakeloi settled more comfortably into the rock as he spoke.

“Oh. I suppose. Nothing so grand as this however. You’ve been told about my work with soul crystals of course. Apart from that I also made the floating temples and tiny colorful creatures you can see in the sky above us. I made these pretty parrots who, now that I think about it, might have been responsible for some of the plant life finding its way down here. They were made for the express purpose of spreading life you see. There is also Luis. He’s a giant flying whale. I would have introduced you but he decided wanted some space to think rather than come with me to meet you. I made an island up north with some mountains on it… it's all been rather sporadic really. I don't tend to stick to one place like you seem to have done.” Azura explained at length.

“I am glad to hear you have been so busy, I shall have to visit the north some time to see that. Traveling more and seeing others is something that I should do more. Tell me, I only met him briefly but I wonder still, do you know what Shengshi has been up to?”

“Shengshi? We haven’t met, though Asceal mentioned him briefly when we spoke some time ago. She mentioned him making a companion named Xiaoli and that he was engaged in some kind of feud with Kalmar? ” Azura cocked her head to one side as she attempted to remember “It didn’t sound extremely serious though? She seemed more disappointed than concerned if I remember rightly. She also mentioned he provided good hospitality, so I imagine he’d be very open to a visit by yourself.”

He stood up on his many legs eager to listen before replying, “Most excellent news, shame about the feud but to make a companion, even I who made the Ihokhetlani did not think of making a companion for myself. A visit would be good yes, I wouldn’t want to impinge however, I must send a message about a when a good time would be. In any case, you have spoken how you haven’t really stuck to one place, tell me of the others you have met. You mentioned Asceal, what is she like? I only have the barest impression myself of the Light goddess.”

“Personally I’m not sure if I like the idea of making people solely for that purpose. Moraly at least. Then again Luis is something of a companion for myself, though I did not make him for that purpose. Asceal also has the friendship of a resurrected soul from the void named Liana... she bobbed her head from side to side, “making someone who has to like you is cruel to the person you made. Also I feel like an earned friendship is probably worth a thousand times more than a forced one?” she finally said, before switching tracks to answer his question.

“Speaking of friendship: I’d like to think of Asceal as a good friend and comrade, even though we have only spoken on three occasions. She is lovely, realy. Kind and empathetic. The comet that lights up the night sky is hers, a reforging of the remains of the second sun that somebody blew up. I’d also hazard a guess that the lumiose island of the west coast of this continent is at least in part her work. She, I and Aelius are also working together on this whole soul situation.” she explained before running the conversation away from the topic of souls for the time being only to flounder into similar issues elsewhere “I’ve also met Ashalla and well… but then i have to talk about…. Maybe instead Li’kalla… or Parvus… oh dear.”

Azura gave a single humorless laugh and then said “It seems I can't talk about those I have met with without spoiling the present mood by touching on some catastrophe or other.” she sighed. “Ashalla’s creations are marvelous wonders to behold and Li’kalla is... Was such a sweet and precious girl… I don’t suppose you’ve had any meetings with the others that haven't been marred by dire events.”

Ohannakeloi listened with a great degree of interest, he may not agree with some of the sentiments expressed but to finally know of the others was a great desire that he did not known he had. “Well I have not met another god besides yourself and two others, although those two others were back in the palace of the Architect of the Spheres. You are the first I have met, or even talked with since coming to Galbar.”

“By the Void. That's quite the period of isolation in between. It’s been… honestly I have no idea how long now that I think about it, but certainly quite a while. Or not isolation. You were with the Ihokhetlani.” she corrected herself “Is there any particular reason as to why you haven’t spoken with the other god or have you just been to busy to head out and unfortunate enough to have not had any guests stop by so far?” she asked curiously

“Ah well, I was beneath the surface for a great deal of time, finding the right place and then having to stabilize the interior regions after what came from Anzillu’s realm got loose. Only later did I come up and make Atokhekwoi and later the Ihokhetlani, so I haven’t been the most accessible. You are correct in that I have not been fortunate enough to have guests or any others contact me, I seem to have assumed correctly that all of the others have been quite busy given what you have told me.”

“Indeed. Most of my encounters where chance one's or ones where I went to investigate something of clearly devine make. Odds are you’ve simply been unlucky since you came up to Galbar.” She insisted before thinking for a touch and asking, her concern clear in her voice “What has Anzillu’s realm done that you needed to contain?”

“Oh, I’m sure it will be fine once I speak to Anzillu, but since you ask there were some bacteria that seemed very unadapted for an environment outside of his realm. It was only of concern as they seemed to try to devour anything they came into contact with, from how they were leaking I assume they fill his realm although for what purpose they are for I do not know.” Ohannakeloi snapped his claws before continuing, “In any case, they were threatening the general stability and support structure of Galbar, I repaired and improved the system into my own realm and took measures to contain further leaks. The system itself was already under some strain from the work of the other gods so it is good I had the opportunity at least, Galbar should be fine as long as my realm continues.”

“I admire your optimism, but ah, having the domain of Demons does not inspire me with much confidence. I don’t remember much of my life before the void with any clarity, but the word ‘demons’ is ringing a lot of alarm bells apparently. An awful lot… At any rate the tales I’ve heard of the likes of Orvas, Vakk, Sartravius, Melantha and what I have seen Katharsos doing indicate that a number of the gods may be rather destructive in their nature. We’ve also already had one, possibly two, attempts at divine murder as well... Just be careful is all I am saying.” she warned

He snapped one claw and tapped his shell with the other saying, “I chose my form to be strong, glorious and protected. I am prepared in mind and body for any who would challenge me! Although to be fair, I’ve scarcely been in contact, let alone contestation, with the other divines.”

“Well that’s good to hear. I haven't been in direct conflict in any either so really I have no idea how a fight between those with our power would go. Anzuillu, Vakk, Katharsos and Sartravius have gone for great size if I remember rightly, where as Orvus and Melantha have the pretty common humanoid shape and size but with varying levels of being made out of dark energy of some kind. she contemplated “I should probably think about tactics to counter them at some point... I do know that we have been given a great deal of resilience. I’ve survived a two natural catastrophes and Asceal survived being inside a sun that exploded. So a fight probably comes down to containing or driving off your opponent rather than killing a god. Anyway. In summary. Good to know you are prepared.

Ohannakeloi simply snapped his claws again in response, evidently unconcerned about his defensive capabilities.

“I do believe that we should discuss a topic at hand now that we have gone beyond the more pleasant pieces of conversation. You are quite fired up in your speech about Katharsos, as I have been told, and you have a notable list of others who you seem to be in general opposition against. What do you intend to do Azura?

“While I have spoken of others I should dial back my accusations just a touch by saying that all of the misgiving I have with regards to them are a result of things I have heard rather than witnessed. Most from a trusted source it is true, but for the moment I simply intend to be wary of them and to warn others to do the same. Perhaps there are misunderstandings involved, or other sides to their stories. I cannot say for now. Melantha in particular is someone I can see possible reasons to empathise with. With Katharsos however, I have seen his crimes with my own eyes, and cannot stand idle by while he continues to commit them… you know most of what I am doing already.“ she said, before cautiously asking “How you feel about what Katharsos has done?“

“I do not know. I would think killing to be wrong, but then I feel it is justified under some circumstances, I could not think of something that would meet this scale and if what you have said is true it would be right to oppose the action. I cannot but think what would drive one to do such, if my memory is truthful Katharsos was the first to leave with such purpose after the Architect's actions, perhaps there is some secret knowledge but that is only a hypothetical. So I do not know for I do not know enough, and I do not mean offense but I only have one source for this at this time, so forgive me for not planning to take much action at this time.”

Azura made an exasperated sound before shaking her head “No I should not get frustrated by your response. Its a sound one, I too had to go see the sky pyres for myself when I was told. It’s good enough to know that you agree that such an act is unjustifiable. Aceal and Ashalla might be good people to ask if you don’t want to travel to the pyres right away. Aceal is with me in this while as Ashalla knows but does not seem indifferent to what Katharsos is doing. I won’t try and press you into joining us, instead can I simply ask that you look into verifying what I have told you and that you don’t make Katharsos aware of what I am doing to oppose him?“

“I will hold off on saying anything that may bring harm down on anyone, as well I will hold off on alerting Katharsos on anything that he would not already know. I make no absolute promises you understand, I will look into verifying the facts of the matter, the truth if you will. I will wait so as to try to avoid disrupting your efforts for now at the very least. I will have to travel to the Pyres if I am to get the information that I will need to know better, I do thank you for the references however. I would urge you not to act too rashly, I know you will do what you feel must be done and I do not advise you do otherwise, but I would take into consideration that if you can organize an attempt to get what you want once, you can do it again if you live. Since I think we both know what you will end up attempting whether soon or later, just don’t get killed in the attempt.”

Azura bowed her head in appreciation “Thank you Ohannakeloi. I appreciate your discretion and will take your advice to heart. It is a sick kind of calculus I must do, each moment of preparation paid for in lives spent. Though in this case that preparation is preventing more souls from going to the pyres. The Ihokhetlani have fortunately suffered no casualties thus far, but there seem to be other mortals around as some of the Alma have already moved on from here to places unknown. I’ll be needing to get the word out of my intentions to them so they can decide to be saved. After that it’s only a matter of time till word gets out and things escalate either way.“ Azura paused for a moment before adding “So I should probably get going soon, unless there are things you would like to discuss with me further?“

“I have nothing more to discuss in particular.” Ohannakeloi dug himself back out of the resting layer of stone he had settled into before continuing, “I wish you well on your journey, whatever that may end up being. I will see you another time.”

“Thank you again. It was good to meet you Ohannakeloi. Be safe.“ She responded, before turning, walking a bit away and then launching herself from the mountain and back into the blue skies that followed here everywhere.




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