There was a clap of flesh against flesh, as Valley brought her hands to the cheek of her Servant’s face; eyes open and glowing with a depth of power ages old.
“Flip silently, o’ pages of old.”
“Plan brilliantly, o’ thiever, so bold.”
“And, reach for riches untold.”
As the two voices spoke, Lancer of Blue would see her Master’s clothing being replaced; gone was her plain attire for something far more extravagant and eye-catching. In addition, a third voice spoke up, “Harken to the call of the Phantom Thief.”
Suddenly, Lancer of Blue would feel her cheeks gain two extremely different temperatures - one of extreme heat, and one of extreme cold, as eyes of the most piercing gold worked into hers, and looked beyond her; in the truth of her very existence.
“Well, aren’t you a broken little mystery,” she asks. “Behind smiles and innocence...” Valley grins, “...but, through your deceptions, We see the truth you hide.”
Lancer of Blue could feel herself being striped bare of any deceptions she kept, both conscious and unconsciously under her Master’s gaze. Those golden eyes peeling back her history, before a sudden flash of mesmerizing blue filled her eyes, and Valley was gone - as was her scythe.
Above her, several feet higher than her arms could reach, Valley floated above Lancer of Blue on seemingly solid platforms of air... gingerly stroking her weapon with a gloved fingertip.
“What to call you,” the Phantom Thief asks, as she lied down, as if bored. “Sickle. Scythe. I don’t have time for the mouthful that is your name,” she says, flippantly, “So, you need a nickname. Got a good one on ya?” @Seirei No Hai
Utterly, did Valley find herself, unprepared for the ocean of magic that sprung forth from the droplet of magic she dripped into the ritual circle to lure the Servant that would heed her call. Around her, bells rang of all kinds; from tinny jingles to dominant clangs, like tambourines and church bells. In eerie depths of tone, a phantasmal choir vocalized - a backing of notes, two-four - as an acting, metronomic tempo to a whispered duel of chants in a mix of languages she couldn’t speak. However, she knew snippets of their tongues; Latin and Spanish, old mother tongues.
“Our Grand Inquisitor!”
“Our Lady of Shadows!”
Feverishly, the chants dueled to a higher and higher pitch, as the choir grew oppressively lower, and both forced Valley to her knees. It was all the struggle she could muster to maintain the Spirits that heeded her call; the self-trained Mage, and Phantom Thief, looked up as the Saint Graphs materialized - two had come to her aid, timeless and connected.
Yet, only one could stay the course.
If she could find it.
Pain wreathed her body, her soul, and tore at her spirit. Such control was beyond her means, and inspired not thoughts of greatness, but fear...
At a crossroads, she stood:
Walk proudly upon The Path of the Righteous...
Drift freely among The Dreams of the Slumbering...
Her choices were only two, yet felt immensely more. In her heart, she knew she was playing a dangerous game, but she didn’t realize how dangerous.
"Daunting odds, isn't it, my little granddaughter? The Grand Inquisitor. The Lady of Shadow. A choice, all yours." Phantasmally, to her right, a dapper, masked man appeared and rested his hand on Valley's trembling shoulder - before rapping her upside the head with a fancy cane. "Stop trembling. It's unbecoming of a Lupin. Ask yourself, chickadee, the only question worth asking: What's worth stealing? The Hand of God, or the Hand of Death?"
Valley looked up, eyeing her masked grandfather - some generations back - with amazement. In moments, her shaking ceased, as her bravery mounted, and her mind looked upon the challenging Servants as prizes to be stolen. "I'm never going to Heaven," she says, her voice a light, pleasant soprano. However, it deepened, suddenly, as if another was speaking, into a contralto, "So, I should enjoy my time in Hell."
Confidently, Valley grinned, as she made her choice of damnation over salvation; determined to follow the path of the Lupin Family. Standing, Valley barely noticed Arsene's Phantom vanish into his book of secret and deceptions that had served her for years, but she did - her voices, seemingly, joining into a mezzo-soprano - as she said, "Thanks, Grandpa," before she faltered; eyes rolling in the back of her head, body going limp, as she fainted from the strain of summoning two Servants in a single cast.
Fortunately, the choice was made, the cast was set, and she sealed the Lady of Shadows upon the physical realm once more.
By the thousands, the sound of fingers typing upon keyboards rang out. By the hundreds, the sounds of pens scribbling across and stamps slamming against printed pages echoed. In the tens, chattered those with phones, landline, and almost glued to their ears of conversations innumerable.
All the sounds of business at peak hours and overtaxed efficiency.
And, in that myriad of noise pollution, was an unassuming woman with her eyes, narrowing into a hard squint, as she proofread a PDF from an email that was tagged with [Urgent] via the priority function, and, furthermore, in bright red, block capitals within the body of the text; centered and double-spaced from the top and bottom, even. Simply sending the email with the "urgent priority" option would have sufficed, but, clearly, that didn't seem good enough for her middle-manager.
Heaving a heavy sigh, Valentina Lupin clicked and typed, clicked and typed, clicked and typed, until she suggested and corrected every glaring error from syntax to grammar; making sure to even annotate the proper usage of a colon and a semicolon, when fusing sentences together. Sure, it was going to result in another write-up for "insubordinate behavior" - a frequent write-up that HR would dismiss on grounds of insufficient evidence of said insubordinate behavior, as her job was to do what she was being written up for - and a very tedious dressing-down, before she could shuffle back to her deck, and open, dollars to doughnuts, the same email, and start a new round of corrections.
Such was life, when you were in hiding.
For you see, Valentina - Valley to her friends - wasn't a normal woman in the slightest, in spite of her plainness and overachieving ability to stand out in no way what-so-ever. No, she was quite peculiar, if you knew her well enough and her heritage.
Valentina Lupin was a Thief, a Phantom Thief; first-born and fourth generation of the ignoble name and disavowed family.
Hers was a bloody past of skulking around and stealing items of incalculable value scoring back nearly a century and a half. Back to the height of Arsene Lupin's change in career that would see his family's name blacked from the Mage Association records, removed from their protection, and, eventually, placed on the list as enemies to be captured, if possible. For most of her adolescence, Valley had refined her trade while staying under the radar, by working as a common burglar and occasional bank thief.
However, this was a miserable existence, as, "A Lupin is destined for greatness," so she was always told as a child, until her father was mercilessly killed before her eyes, and her world was uprooted from a carnival-esque happiness to a mind and soul crushing, nine-to-five at various temporary agencies as a receptionist, proofreader, or other manner of soulless corporate drone, until she cracked from the monotony and ran away to another part of the United Kingdom.
Another turn on the wheel.
However, this turn was something special. All too suddenly, Valley felt a burn against her right hand; the back of her palm ached for a moment, before it felt like someone was tattooing her. Pausing her work, Valley watched as the tattoo formed, and settled as a thickly outlined, stylized card suit spade in three parts. Confused, Valley maintained her composure, before hearing a whisper in her mind, “The war has begun. Here my call, Master. Find me at Çanakkale. Summon me to your side.” and she felt herself drawn to do just that...
Valley arrived in Çanakkale by way of plane, and touched down without issue. Constantly on the run, Valley was always ready to boogie out, and, by robbing her middle-manager, and pawning his stuff, a plane ticket was no challenge to acquire. In the back of her mind, she could hear the woman, desperate and mewling, as she followed that impulse like a GPS. Eventually, she found herself as one of the first to arrive at a large mansion to face her destiny.
Before she even planned to settled in, she intended to push to free her mind of the third voice that occupied it by summoning her Servant...
Age: 18, by physical appearance and admissions. Hinted to be significantly older, however, by referential knowledge of the Hippie Era.
Contracted to: Khronos. As an unassuming ARMARUNE, it presents as an hand-and-half estoc that is seemingly forged of solid quartz. An edgeless sword and seemingly dulled from being stone, Khronos should never be able to punch through anything, and yet it easily does by interacting with Time, itself, and seeking out a timeline in which its target is skewered within the blink of an eye. In this same timeline-seeking corrective behavior, Khronos cannot be shattered despite it being stone, as it seeks to always be whole.
In MAGILOCK=DRAGOKEY Form, Khronos ceases to be one sword, and becomes six daggers, and unlocks its true power: Opening Temporal Passages. In doing so, Silica is able to multiply her attack by summoning six variants of herself within one minute of the execution and completion of her attack, turning a single attack into six simultaneous attacks from various angles and timings.
Abilities: Limited Time Control. A sphere that is ten-meter wide forms around Silica, in which she can pause, rewind, and predict any and all motions within ten seconds. This allows her to fight flawlessly, as long as she can focus and support Khronos, deflecting attacks by pausing, following their intended paths, and countering them as soon as they enter her field of temporal control.
However, due to her limited control, she has developed a secondary ability to control her own time to a much finer degree in order to rewind simple wounds, and lock her body in stasis to prevent grievous injury from killing her. Unfortunately, due to the youth of her body and her temporal displacement, her physical endurance cannot maintain strenuous activities for extended periods of time, and can maintain her MAGILOCK Form for six to ten minutes.
MAGILOCK=DRAGOKEY Abilities: Near Limitless Time Control. By breaking Khronos into smaller forms, it loosens and releases most of its true power; blossoming its sphere of influence to thirty-meters, and expands Silica’s temporal control to, not only, the realm upon which she stands, but all realms in which she lives. There is no timeline that she cannot interface with, granting her near-immortality, and the ability to allow other variants of herself to strike with her in tandem.
Because of her unrestrained control, Silica can reverse any damage instantly upon it being taken. However, due to this extreme temporal access, her temporal displacement is not as stable, and it cannot be used to the same extent as her MAGILOCK Form, and only last for roughly three minutes with a maximum of five minutes at her current state of physical endurance.
History: Citrine Silica, daughter of a hippie and a geologist, is a simple girl with a simple lifestyle of flowery freedom and rock tumblers. Breezing through life, school, and her problems, Citrine -- better known as Silica -- doesn’t let anything bother her, and takes few things seriously. However, this is but one variant of her.
In another timeline, the Temporal Sword Saintess known as Citrine Silica held her ARMARUNE, Khronos, and stared at a crack in the timeline from a war-torn world, overrun and doomed, and held the sword in a broken hand.
“I surrender my Sainthood to you. I beseech you, go to her, and save her world.”
“Another world. Another you. Mortals are unchanging, in success or failure.”
“Please, my Lord, give to her... a fighting chance...”
“As my last gift to you, mortal, I shall heed what you beg of me.”
Her vision blurred with tears of emotions too mixed to sort, and Khronos was plunged into another timeline, another that could fail like hers, and she collapsed with the breach in time.
In this timeline of our perception, Silica was merely a highschool student, studying for a test, when Khronos thrust free of Time, and sheathed in her bedroom desk.
“Take your hand to me, mortal. As we have, countless times before, much to do.”
Personality: As a Civilian, Silica is a pretty laid back girl -- being the daughter of a hippie really helps. She’s lazy, carefless, and doesn’t let much stress her out beyond the usual highschool girl cliches. However, in Magilock Form, Silica is extremely militaristic, commanding, and no-nonsense, as Khronos melds her with the many other variants of her that have been given and lost Sainthood under its watch..
Upon taking up Khronos and committing to her creed, Silica is transforming the intermediate state of the Temporal Sword Saintness; an amalgamation of all contracted before her. Her overall fashion changes little -- however, it trades earthy colors of orange and black for the harsher nature of its militarialistic red and white, and gains an imperial clock of shocking crimson. Her normal sneakers and tight-high socks are replaced by a pair of stylish, but functional boots and hugging stocking that cease above her thighs. Each hand is gloved by a sleek, white fabric similar to her stocking, and butted by a pronounced cuff of several sewn in medals of various honors, as opposed to be sewn to her chest, which is coated by several golden chains.
The most noticeable physical change is that of her hair being chopping short and her eyes going from an easygoing green to a callous red.
By fusing Khronos with the DRAGOKEY, Silica is changed in a far more dramatic fashion. Trading femininity in her attire for masculinity, Silica creates a commanding presence that seems to force even time to yield. Replacing her militaristic, yet slightly provocative MAGILOCK attire for a one completely lacking sensuality; her red and white button up being traded in for one in brown and black, her crimson cape becoming arderent with gold latch trimming and belts that return their old red that attack to a high collar encapsulating her neck. Her skirt extends into a pair of black jeans, and her boots become combat boots of matching hue. Across a leg, a dagger belt that holds four is fashioned, while her sleek gloves have become bulkier to better handle daggers in combat.
Much like before, her only physical features that change are her hair and eyes; the smoothed locks become wilder in chunks, and her stopping red eyes turning into a bright yellow that commands one to carefully yield. In combination, Silica looks older than usual.
Unrivaled in her weaving, Caster challenged Athena, herself, and won. However, to best a Goddess is a short trip to condemnation, and, in a desperate bid for salvation, hung herself. Unfortunately, Athena would not be denied her due, and cursed Caster to become a spider; spinning and weaving grand webs to be torn down by common hands.
Once upon a time, Caster was a boastful woman; arrogant and proud, and for good reason. However, shortly prior to her death, her arrogance and pride were replaced with fear and humility -- too little, too late. Outwardly, Caster attempts to maintain her old personality of pride and arrogance... unfortunately, deific rebirth as a spider, and then summoning as a human has polluted her mind, and left her with a bestial sub-personality that is prone to anger and violence when challenged.
Within the context of her legend, Arachne did not create any items within her lifetime that were not woven. As such, any magical items she create are of a low level, but her weaving skill makes the quality of any woven or cloth based magical items skyrocket.
Territory Creation [Rank B]
Like a spider, Caster can make any location a home for her and her Master; building it with her webs and using her illusions to hide traps from all but the most discerning eye.
Unrivaled Weaving [Rank A]
Due in part to her skill, amplified by her legend, Caster’s webs can be woven into grand illusions that can alter reality and perception itself to her whim. If she weaves a tapestry of a sword, then said sword may be drawn free of the tapestry as if it were merely sheathed. If she weaves a building it will grow from her tapestry like a great oak from a seedlings. In this way, she is able, still, to challenge Gods. This is in essence her combat magic, so potent in its efficiency that it is capable of enhancing her Item Creation skill with a conditional bonus based on the item’s construction type. Woven items are hollow when not created using Item Creation, making them one-use powerful tools
This functions as the Skill [Illusionism].
The Careless Broodmother [Rank EX]
By Athena, Caster was cursed to suffer her rebirth as the First Spider, and, as punishment for her carelessness, so, too, were all her descendants beyond her, until the very last. As such, all natural spiders of this world harken back to Caster, and this skill transforms ordinary spiders within a limited range of her -- typically, two to three miles while awake, and one while resting -- into Familiars; inherently seeking to serve their Broodmother; acting as eyes and ears, spinning and spread web in her name, and delivering Mana to her.
Distaff Dexterity [Rank B]
While no longer certifiably human, Caster’s fingers remember the motions of her distaffs, and well. Each finger is able to soar beyond the sight of eyes, and weave a blanket-like tapestry in mere seconds regardless of design.
This functions as the Skill [Rapid Casting].
Mental Pollution [Rank B]
Life and Death; Death and Rebirth; In-between, traumas. Due to her curse and her summoning, Caster has both the mind of a human and that of a spider in constant flux for control. It is hard to mentally attack her, but equally hard for the woman to stay in complete control of the spider.
Torn Webs, Once Woven Skintight "A Well-woven Nightmare Upon Eight-legs..."
Anti-Self 0 Range Self-target
Nevermore meant to be human, Caster reveals her true nature, and sheds the last of her gifted humanity; her lower half splits apart, and reveals a spider body that raises Caster like an eight-legged centaur, and unbinds her from her mortal grip. This Noble Phantasm provides great power at great cost, and can only be undone by convincing Caster to remake her spider half human again or by force of Command Seal.
While in such a monstrous state, the spiders that heed her become equally as monstrous, transforming into beasts as large as the typical housecat, and far more aggressive. Seeking only to aid, they will hunt and capture prey for Caster to feed on.
Name: Valentina “Valley” Lupin Title: The Phantom Thief Vixen Team: Blue Team Sex: Female Alignment: Chaotic Neutral
Nearly a century and half before the present timeline, a savant of magic was born; a man that could teleport himself from one place to any place he desires -- the one that would become known as the Phantom Theif, Arsene Lupin. However, as Man is born, so, too, must a Man die. Arsene was unable to steal The Seed of Immortality from The Root, despite his infamous accomplishments, he was able to pass on his techniques and his life's work to his children and their children and his descendants beyond him. Unfortunately, as with all pure things, time dilutes and weakens even the strongest of things.
By the time Valentina Lupon, the sole great(x4)-granddaughter of the Lupin, and firstborn heir of the familial trade, was born, the Teleportation that Arsene had been known for had been reduced to Blinking, a type of “super-speed” via Reinforcement one’s body with Wind Magic and sharpening one’s aerodynamics to their maximum by Enhancement, for no other Lupin had been born with Imaginary Numbers.
As a child, Valentina was trained in earnest by her father to take and uphold the mantle of the name “Lupin”, but merely regarded it as a game, and didn’t take much of it seriously, like any child would.
It was merely a matter of time, unfortunately, until actions of prior generations and her blood caught up to Valentina, and the Mage Association arrived in her early teen years. In a flash of magic and blood exchanges, Valentina found herself thrust into the damnation of her bloodline, and keeper of Arsene Lupin’s Grimoire -- transformed into a powerful Mystic Code after a countless years locking up other Mystic Codes within.
Hateful. Confused. Alone. Valentina took up her birthright, and dedicated her life to taking down the Mage Association for taking everything from her by stealing everything from them.
During the daytime, Valentina “Valley” Lipun is a passive and non-confrontational young woman; merely carrying her day-to-day, nine-to-five at a law firm as a hardly paid secretary. However, when it is time to do some dirty work, and the Phantom Thief Vixen comes out to play, her personality is far more aggressive and cocky; not so much to put her own life in danger, but enough to steal from impossible circumstance that anyone else would easily fail
By reinforcing her legs and enhancing her body with Wind Magic, Valley can seemingly “blink” forwards, as if teleporting, a short range. This cannot phase her through solid objects or magic barriers, however, due to being a product of Wind Magic, Valley can create “steps” upon the air, and create a stable platform to blink off at-will. This is derived from generations of attempts to recreate Arsene Lupin’s original Teleportation Spell.
Forewarned Is Forearmed
In essence, this spell is a Bounded Field fashioned by the hidden placement of her calling cards that functions as a Precognition Spell. Inside, it begins to record and analyze any and all movement, and can predict movements based on pattern-recognition. The longer this Bounded Field is in effect, the more accurate Valley can predict what will happen within.
Primary Mystic Code
Arsene Lupin's Calling Card
Arsene Lupin was a Magus before he became a Phantom Thief, and stained his bloodline black with the greens and yellows of money and gold. As such, he owned a grimoire of his own design. In his case, it was designed as a single, engraved piece of stationary that bore his name, quite proudly.
Inside, its pages were filled with generations of planned heists and their successes -- not a one claiming the wealth of aristocrazy, but the might of some of the highest profile magical families known. Arsene Lupin was a thief that stole, not material gain, but the immaterial, as he robbed Mystic Codes, and folded them into his family’s bloodright or their future coffers. As each page containing what was once private, now made quite public by his misdeeds for profit.
However, some remain behind -- names changed -- known as the Phantom Thief Codes.
In its current state. it should serve as a catalyst to summon Arsene Lupin as a Servant, but, instead, it serves as it always has: the Grimoire of a Lupin. Each page, seemingly in infinite supply, can be detached and used as a Calling Card to cast stolen spells or set up their family’s Bounded Field.
Phantom Thief Codes
A Mystic Code that replicates the Mystic Eyes of Deceit. By adorning this Mystic Code, its effect is immediate to its brilliant gold eyes, and can see through “that which deceives,” allowing Valley to reverse lies; unlocking any manner of locked doors, sussing the truth from even magically-reinforced liars, and other such things.
A Mystic Code that offers increased durability by passively reinforcing and enhancing Valley’s Wind Magic to create a skin-tight layer of ever-moving winds that can deflect all non-magical projectiles and weapon blows, and even deflect some magical blasts, like Gandr.
A Mystic Code that is a combination of stockings and heels that, much like the Binding Blouse, passively reinforces and enhances Valley’s Wind Magic, reducing the pressure and impact of her Blink Step, allowing for successive uses without physical damage to her legs and feet.
Mana Battery Belt:
A Mystic Code that is a belt that assists in offsetting Vallet’s rather low Magic Circuit stats by regulating her Od through itself and two absorbent jewels that functions as emergency sources of it. The sashes that hang off the belt absorb Prana passively, which become acclimated to Valley’s Od and stored within the sink-jewels.
Celsius and Fahrenheit:
A pair of Mystic Codes designed to be used in conjunction with each other, and, more importantly, tailor-made for those with an Affinity for Wind. The right hand, Fahrenheit, super-heats the air immediately around itself, and uses wind to project flames that can be forged into spheres and streams. The left hand, Celsius, flash-freezes the air immediately around itself, and uses wind to propel frost that can be forced into streams and spears.
Valley’s final Mystic Code that is hopeless, matte white on the outside, and an almost alien and lustrous blue on the inside. It is reversible, and when reversed, the blue disorients those observing it, temporarily, and gives Valley the chance to vanish or attack in defense.
Valley is a skilled free-runner; able to vault, scale, and climb all but the most sheer of surfaces.
Committing elaborate crimes requires a quick understanding of what's in store, starting with planning and ending with the fence.
Valley has, while not complete mastery, a high-degree of skill in most martial arts on par with a competitive MMA fighter.