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Yeah, don't think I'll be able to get a post up this week. Brain's going no places, so just arrange for Cecilia to follow whoever wherever.
Lugh's intent was read, and his body filled with more might than ever before. The katana shot out of his sheathe with such force that the wind itself moved, the hairs of the leftside kappa being blown back. Blade met haft forcefully, and even with two hands reinforcing it, the kappa's spear was knocked astray, giving Lugh opportunity to close in further. But close range too, was the expertise of a kappa. They only wanted two things in life after all, cucumbers and sumo wrestling. With the dark-haired warrior too close for the spear, the kappa readily moved in as well. The green beast sprung forward on webbed feet, grabbing Lugh's left wrist and arresting the wakizaki's movement before it could cleave into the skull. They struggled for a moment, both at too close of a range to use their main weapons, before the kappa utilized an ancient sumo wrestling technique.

A powerful knee to the groin, using all the frog-like springness in its body in an effort to make the Immortal Infertile.
After many mishaps and misgivings, the group of Discord buddies, who may or may not be seriously reconsidering their buddyhood, congregated once more at the West Gate. Magpie, though still suffering from getting absolutely tossed to the curb by a player that got sick of her disruptive shit, looked to be the best out of all of them, sporting a non-beginner class and an HP bar that still had 80 left. Ames, though not in the possession of any glorious magical powers himself, did, due to Krizanteme’s abrupt log-off, find himself in possession of not one, but two of Fa Trung’s Talismans. Lugh may be the tankiest fellow around and may possess actual weapons, while Raiman had a slick new crossbow and knew where one could exchange precious ores for actual currency, but Ames was swole and was really feeling the effects of having +10 to all her stats. There was a spring in his step, a sureness in his balance, a sturdiness in his gait. Weaponless though he may be, the red-haired warrior felt confident going out into the monster-infested wilderness.

The moment they took a step out of the West Gate, they all heard a ping in the back of their heads. A screen appeared before their eyes, the contents different for each player.

Naturally, without having selected a class, neither Klein nor Ari had the same benefit. Whether that would be an extremely detrimental thing or merely a temporary setback was yet to be seen.

Regardless, with skills now understood, and at least two of the party members armed with proper weapons, the group of seven marched off, following the beaten dirt roads that extended out from Nyu-Taro before spotting the familiar sight of other players going up and down the Pearl Bloom River, farming all sorts of monsters. The waters were fresh and sparkling, though the blood of slain beasts made it a bit murky, while the ‘pearls’ that bloomed within the river appeared to be clusters of alabaster lotus buds, which extended out from the riverbank towards the center. It would have been a pretty place for a picnic, if not for the amount of Immortals going around killing everything they could find. Close to Nyu-Taro, the population density was a bit intense and friendly fire seemed rampant, but the further down the river they trekked, the less Immortals there were, until finally, at a wide bend of the river, the party found themselves relatively alone.

It was here that they spotted their first unclaimed prey.

Amongst the reeds, two green, humanoid creatures, sporting turtle shells on their backs and a bone-like plate on their crown, stared at the party with dead, fish-like eyes. Lugh and Ari, connoisseurs of anime, would know what they were: kappa. Rudimentary spears were in their hands, and their beaked mouths were filled with an abundance of small, tiny teeth. The creatures didn’t lash out or charge though. After a moment of observation from both sides, the creatures grinned, then smugly stepped out from the reeds, approaching the party with the menace of someone who can’t beat you up without getting closer.

Real cocky, honestly, when they were only five feet tall.

If it was just a book…

Amaryllis could feel herself fading away. The situation hadn’t been nearly so dire as she expected, and now, even the vestiges of her magical energy were being pulled, teased away by that invisible barrier constructing itself over Penrose. Though her specialty still laid in physical combat, her transformation still relied on magic. Magic that was seeping away, grains of stardust between splayed fingers. Her Sword thrummed, knowing that she had no leeway to show mercy this time, but the Knight of Rose stayed where she was.

Just a book. What was the book?

But the world continued to turn, even for the girl who could chain down space itself. Nuncio arrived, Sammy in tow. The girl was still zoned out, and the swordswoman flashed a grim smile. More people to protect. What was the play here? The Mint Agent before her summoned beasts, but summoners were, in the magical girl world at least, rarely weaker than their minions. Amaryllis tunneled into herself, gathering up what remained. Could she behead him in a singular blow? The monstrosity beneath her skin writhed; if she pulled the trigger now, she wouldn’t be able to restrain herself afterwards.

Nuncio stepped in front. Amaryllis didn’t have a straight shot. He handed over the book, was kneed in the process, and then shouted for them all to escape.


A laugh, not at the feline mafioso’s bravado, but at the chain of events that occurred instead. Golden barriers, lighting up the dark interiors of the warehouse. A storm of dark chains, batting away the Vermin Killer’s swarm of wolverines. Rosa, transformed, leaping towards the agent with murderous intent. Amaryllis would have been fine with running, would have been fine just making sure Mariette and Sammy got out alright, but now?

She couldn’t let Sophia down, could she? A whole season’s worth of monster-slaying and Horror-stomping, and Amaryllis was still the girl who valued what friends she had, who’d do a whole buncha stupid things for them.

Stupid, like continuing the fight.

Stupid, like making an enemy of the Mint.

Stupid, like saddling Mariette with more problems.

Amaryllis dug deep into the husk of her mana font, breathed in, watched the writhing of the chains and the swarming of the beasts. Her Sword rattled, and she promised too, that they would hunt for many moons after this, that she would build it a mountain of monster corpses for the leniency it had shown today, the mercy it allowed her to enact.

A blade formed in her palm, a sliver from which silver thread extended.

She sighted her target. She flexed her hand back. She threw.

A line of moonlight shot through the links of Sophia’s chains, the gaps of a wolverine’s claws, shooting towards Nuncio’s back. If it struck, there was only one thing Amaryllis needed to do.

Use her ridiculous strength to sling him after Sammy, Eli and Mariette.

That was a Skeleton Key? No...that was a skeleton key! Myria stared at her taxi fare, for a moment absolutely incensed. Her eyes burned black and her magic, still plentiful from a whole night of really doing nothing, flared up, digging into the resentment of the dead.

Then Fine dumped a bucket of ice water over her head.

"C'mon, kiddo," the silver-haired dame said, an oddly kind smile on her face. "Let's get going."

Myria narrowed her eyes further, then shook her head from side to side like a wet dog. Finally, she let out a deep sigh and dropped her new skeleton key into her Hammerspace. At least, now that she was fully drenched, no one would think that she pissed herself a half hour ago. Not that she did. Nope. Not at all. Her nose wrinkled, she sneezed, and then the dark magical girl nodded.

Soon, the truck, its bumper still warped from impacting Evira, disappeared into the streets of Penrose.

Talk? There had been plenty of time to talk back then, but who talked? No one!

Though she supposed that races with no clear goal and no piranha plants did get pretty old after a while. Not like Askefye could watch Su fly while she did too, so whatever fancy effects the girl did was lost on her. And competitions were so meaninglessly orderly too. The flaming girl slowed, white jets gradating to a warm orange as she spun around. If she didn’t like the talk, she could just go again. If she really didn’t like the talk, she could give them a fistful of fingerbones to their foreheads.

“Talk then,” Askefye said, still a bit petulant. “Talkity talk tock.”
Out of a single digit sample size.
Thought I may as well drop this here too. This is the stat count that Flame collected some while back, and should still be relevant currently.

Around 41 to 45 is where the plateau seems to be. Dina is at 46, Charles is at 45. There's still a relatively gradual increase over all though, with only Penny being the outlier, featuring a jump in stats of seven (which could be much higher if she had spent her coinage solely on stat-raising).

An end of season reward is worth 4 stats, while one can be expected to earn another 3-4 stats based off events alone.

Past the 50-stat mark, there are no S3 characters, outside of Eden, who exist there. Note, of course, that she used her Ruby Coin (gifted from a S2 character) to gain a third specialization. Psychic gives you 4 stats, so she broke even after accounting for the -4 in stats you get from that stuff. At base then, Eden would still have 53 in stats, indicating that you could start off with fairly high stats fairly easily.

If we ignore Eden's existence, I would be comfortable with talking to the other GMs about setting a stat cap at 50. Afterwards, perhaps at the end of every season, everyone's statcap is raised by a minimum of 4 (accounting only for the End of Season reward) or a maximum of 8 (accounting also for the coinage you'd get from other stuff). Or perhaps some number inbetween.

There are other catchup mechanisms I have in mind for newer players, such as the ability to refuse the stat cap increase for extra coinage (though that sounds easily abusable) but I'll wait on everyone else's thoughts on the subject first.

Well, that was exciting!

Swept up by the maelstrom of Lady Blumenthal's accelerated morning ritual, Kress simply went with the flow, spending the time to pack up her breakfast into a container for future fooding before she practically dragged him to Genelogia Station. It wasn't the first time he had ridden a carriage, but it was certainly the first time he had ridden a public one, and the differences in decor and mannerism was quite interesting. Though his dormmate may have busied herself with becoming even more presentable than she already was, Kress had popped out his sketchbook instead, scribbling down notes, both written and drawn, on the strange circumstances around them. Not like worry about the time would make the horses go any faster...though Lady Blumenthal certainly tried.

They arrived a step behind Sekhandur, who looked about as unflappable as always. Ty was there as well, and Kiara too! Honestly, considering how Professor Nyx had eradicated most of the class on day one (though, of course, it was more as if they were relocated) and how he didn't even bother to pretend Misaiya existed during homeroom on that same day, Kress had thought they were going to be left behind completely. It was nice to see, really, that there was some niceness in the professor after all. Tough love, was it? Avalice Academy brought many experiences and this was certainly one of them. Leaving Lady Blumenthal to excuse herself first, Kress was perfectly willing to wait his turn...until Caelum spoke up.

Two weeks had been plenty of time to understand how refined his classmates' speech was, and amongst them, Caelum was decidedly placed upon the same category of Ty, though perhaps he was worse in that he did so unintentionally. The blue-haired youth's eyes widened slightly, pupils dilating as he read the warrior's intention before everything was vocalized, and in that moment, Kress spoke up, hoping to cover up what fire-fuelling nicknames his classmate was about to speak out.

"Ah, I stayed behind to wake Lady Blumenthal up, because I noticed that she wasn't up when she usually was," he said, all smiles. "Ty, you went ahead of us to explain the circumstances of our tardiness to Professor Nyx, right?" Hopefully Ty'd pick up the white lie from there. Certainly sounded better than the past where Ty left the dorm before any of them even woke up.

There were others, of course, who had more...scandalous theories. Kress flushed a bit at the implications that Mandi leveled upon the two. Lady Blumenthal may be a lovely individual, goal-driven and hard-working almost to a fault, but to imagine a situation where they'd have coupled in a mere two weeks? Weren't most meaningful romances something that culminated in a chaste kiss after a year or two of cordial friendship? Kress rubbed his ear, feeling how hot it was, and then shook his head.

"No, no, Mandi. Lady Blumenthal was just up late studying...protective spellcrafts, was it? Theories and Practicums on the Manifestation of Static Resistance?"

Didn't take a genius to read the spines of all those library books she brought in, after all.

Took a while, but thar ye go. One can presume that either Kress and Alberta use their money to arrive via carriage, or get there running, I suppose.

The last two weeks had been fun. It didn't cover any new ground, at least theory-wise, but as the days melted into each other, Kress could definitely feel the difference of working in a class, rather than having one-on-one tutoring sessions all the time. Seeing other students solve problems in different fashions. Eavesdropping on other people's discussions. And clubs! Oh, how wonderful clubs are! Arcane Paints with Ankaa, Misaiya, and Yvaine was pretty fun, but as a Creation Calculator himself, the Natural Magics Club and the Sorcerous Forge competed for his affections too, not to mention the hella fun jam sessions that the Avalice A-Stringers had been hosting over the last week or so. Making friends was fun, for sure!

It would have been more fun if Professor Nyx hadn't told them that they were leaving the Academy today and going elsewhere for a particular mission at the behest of theAcademy. Which was also fun, of course, and definitely a new experience. Kress was grateful for this opportunity too. It'd almost be like a mini-vacation!

But the harp he had ordered was supposed to arrive at the dorms today, and he had promised his A-Stringer friends that he'd show off his own skills. Have some fun. Participate and all, rather than just listen and enjoy.

Positives though. Always the positives.

He woke up, had breakfast without Ty, packed up his essentials in a suitcase, washed the dishes, set his abacus to a Make Heat spell for when Alberta would get out of the bathroom, and then settled down to wait for her to wake up. Kress waited longer then, rocking back and forth on his chair. Then a bit longer. Then closed his eyes and listened. There...didn't seem to be the sound of anyone actually being in the washroom. And as a matter of fact...was that snoring he heard?

The blue-haired youth looked at the clock, then towards Alberta's side of the room, then towards the flashback of all her rules, which, though Ty flagrantly broke, Kress treated as sacred law. He screwed his face up, looked back at the clock, tried to calculate the distance between Dorm Building C and Genelogia Station while taking in consideration their respective running speeds, sweated a bit more over how fast time seemed to move all of a sudden, and then sucked in a breath.

Time to man up and do this the manly way.

"Uh, Lady Blumenthal?" Kress stage-whispered, having not yet resolved himself to be a screaming nuisance this 'early' in the morning. "If you don't get up now, we'll be late...the Professor wants us to get to Genelogia Station, so...wake up?"

It took a few more tries before his voice reached normal speaking volume, and a few more tries after that before it could really be considered anything loud enough to reasonably rouse someone from their sleep.
@BluPlanning on posting today, yeah. Getting work done first.
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