Status

Recent Statuses

1 mo ago
Current Sometimes I forget to breathe.
2 likes
1 mo ago
Existentialism.
2 mos ago
Chad move, drawing your own characters.
1 like
2 mos ago
Did it ever have any?
2 likes
3 mos ago
Might as well call it in, I may have came down with Omnicron. God my head is killing me...

Bio

Welcome to White Space.
You've lived here for as long as you can remember.



Current Haunts:
Symphony of Espers - Fable/Timekeeper
March of the White Rabbit - Various
World of Light - Frisk and Omori
Grimoric Heart - Celina/Lupin
Pokemon: Ascendancy - Bianca

Most Recent Posts

INTERMISSION:


"...So that's it then."

"Mhm."

With nothing else to do for a while, Maribel decided to catch up with an old friend. The nightmare witch found Jennifer, ironically enough, looking into the hellish layers of nightmares Violet was being forced to sit through. She said nothing for a moment, walking up next to the false witch. Grim curiosity aside, Maribel felt kind of bad for her. She was a good kid, albeit cavity-inducing as MDP. Did she really deserve to suffer like this? She glanced over to Jen. "Your new friend is quite ah...interesting~ But wouldn't Penny catch onto her dissapearance~?" She asked her.

"Pff, doubt it. She's too busy ripping and tearing through Wonderland's ambush to care. Besides! I know Doc'll be done with her soon as Bolorton's safe to leave alone. Like nothing ever happened, yeah?" Jen reassured her without looking away from the window her clock eye was projecting.

"Oh, I don't doubt it in the slightest! But I'd expect you to use this to your advantage~ You know, with you busy trying to go against our fair queen~" Maribel giggled. Though she quickly stiffled it as the next nightmare started.

Jen rose a brow. "Mind elaborating, Mari?"

The nightmare witch "innocently" smiled. "Oh, you know, prevent Penny from saving her in time, reducing her into a shell of her former self from her traumatic nightmares, thus breaking cracks into her trust in her precious paragon? Let Amanda know she was kidnapped, thus giving her the role of her savior and gradually manipulating her into leaving Penny in favor of Amanda?" She suggested. Jen's eyes widened in surprise.

"Well shit! I see you've been doing your homework!" She chuckled.

"Just a thought~ Amanda's not even back yet, sadly." Maribel looked back to the window. Geez, is Violet really that afraid of her father? Maybe if there was something she could do about that...

Jennifer then shook her head. "But nah, none of that's gonna work. You'll see in a moment."

Soon enough, the third nightmare played through. The nightmare witch rose a brow at how normal it seemed. Even Amanda looked perfectly unhinged as she fought the weaker dream Nykannis. Then once Penny and Violet fled into her pocket dimension, the pieces slowly started to come together. Maribel's brows rose.

"Ouroboros?"

"Oros. I assume you already know what she did?"

Maribel cringed at that. "Right... But wait, she's as 'aware' as you! Wouldn't that ruin the illusion?" She asked.

"Exactly. Power of love crap, fuckin' cheesy as hell. But that's not the worst of it. Look."

Then they watched the...ahem...pregnancy happen. Maribel wasn't smiling at that point.

"Oh now that is just repulsive! Poor Violet..."

"I know. Apparently not the first case of what that implies." Jennifer's expression darkened with disgust. "Like hell we'll be stopping at Penny at this rate. You wanna know what Finn'll do once he finds out Justine's full rep sheet, Mari? He's going to fucking KILL her. To hell with what Maura wishes, or whatever their relationship ends up being, he's not going to hesitate!" The Exodus ranted. "Ugh, this damn reality is becoming unsalvagable by the day..." She pinched the bridge of her nose. Maribel patted her back in reassurance.

"By the way, you two kind of look alike. You think maybe she's...you know." The other witch tilted her head.

"I can see what you mean, but no. Maura's not that Penrose's me. Even if she was, that'd overlapse our roles as Death and Time. Though I guess it wouldn't? Since I'm stuck without someone representing Space? I know someone who would be a good canidate but..." Jen sighed. "I don't want him to suffer the same fate I have."

Maribel already knew, and choose to say nothing about it, solemnly nodding. "Anyone else you recognize?"

"...Yeah. And that's concerning." From the main window, two more branced out, showing glimpses into the past. "Dead or alive, if those two made appearances in this reality, then that means more of them could be out there. Or worse, there really is another me!" Jen motioned to the windows with exageration.

"And that's a problem because?"

Jen's arms dropped down to her sides. She gave Maribel an unamused look. "You don't know me very well, do you?"

"I know the you I know is pretty great~ So what's the problem with another you~?" The nightmare witch asked.

"BECAUSE, the other me's are STUPID, Mari!"

She frowned slightly. Best not to provoke her about it. "So, what are you going to do about it?"

Jennifer crossed her arms. "Gotta wait till one of the North Hunts begins to deal with the fairy, but if my theory's true? Hunt the rest down, I guess." She casually shrugged.

Maribel narrowed her eyes. "Must murder be your answer to every problem?"

"Yep!" With that, the false witch's cheshire grin returned.

"Brb gonna kill god."
Current Location: Precinct #11

Had he not thought this through?

Perhaps, he had too much hope that this would be it. They could wait out the storm, hope the rest could defeat Justin, and break his thralls free from his control. To hell with the Diver. Finn said it himself, "Just save who we can." At best, he hoped Lydia turned out to be an esper too, but didn't tell him. At worst...

He only hoped she could forgive the fool she called her brother. His mind hadn't even registered the rust that corroded his frame.

The door was left unlocked. Just a bit further and-!!

"AAAGH!!" Betty kneed him in the chest, no doubt returning the favor of rupturing her own boils. Momentarily stunned by the pain, the Timekeeper collapsed forward, giving her the opportunity to flee again. His eyes went wide in fear...for her. The hail was going to kill her if she didn't get to cover. "BETTY NO, WAIT!!" Finn reached out for her in vain. Again. He stood back to his feet as quick as he could will himself to, but it was too late. She dissapeared into the storm. She dissapeared again. He was so close. Everything was starting to look up, despite the pain and hopelessness of the situation.

And he still lost. Whatever hope he was clinging onto like a lifeline was gone in that instant.

Why?

Why can't he do anything right?

Finn wasn't even aware of the other agents' victory over Justin. What would it matter though, that wasn't his fight. Never was. As much as he wished it was, that detestible creep. All that mattered was that he wouldn't hurt anyone anymore.

...So now what? He didn't know how much mana the rest had. He was robbed of the bastard he wanted to kill, and the one person he (for some reason at this rate) wanted to be alive and safe continues to be a pain in the ass. No one was fighting the Diver either, did the other espers in the city get attacked too? As he leaned against the wall by the door, the boy noted two options.

Wait out the rest of the spells. There were only two left till countless firstborns meet their end, but they have wasted too much time and mana on Justin and his toadies.

Or, regroup with the others, and take out what remained of his anger on the diver.

...Right. He hurried back to the roof. He still had a bit of mana left to atleast do something. If not, he would be fine just brute forcing that thing down with his gun and instrument. Someone's gotta get rid of that fucking thing, even if he does die trying. Rusted and bloody, Finn soon emerged back on the top floor and gave the area a quick glance around.

Justin was reduced to a pool of blood. Good riddance. Another new face had appeared to help them out. Locusts appeared too, number eight. Then there it was, the gargantuan asshat himself. Without further delay, Finn broke into a sprint towards the bridge the teal-clad esper had created. He made himself faster, mending his wounds as he prepared himself to strike. Then once he was close enough, he practually launched himself at the Behemoth, aiming to stab it in the head. Then stab it again, and again, and again. "JUST DIE ALREADY!" He roared, driven by desperation and frustration.

Level: 3
Experience: 26/30 (Level Up!!)
Currently In: Leaving the Sea of Serendipity
Word Count: 1,006 (+2 Exp)
Small collab with Pit @Yankee




...Hm. So that was how it is. She was one of those "I know better than you" types. Omori couldn't help shaking his head in distain. Maybe he shouldn't tell Karin he figured out how his flintlock worked. At least now they can continue to Twilight Town; dry land, without anything else cropping up. The boy walked back to where he left the gunblade and machete and sat back down. He then pulled out the parakeet bobblehead, and lightly poked it to make it move.

"...Heheh." His lips curled up into a small smile. Yeah. Everything's going to be okay. The sea didn't seem as scary as he thought now.

Despite the pompous way she'd delivered it, Karin's words did resonate with Pit. It was something he and Lady Palutena had argued with Viridi about early on, the people versus the planet. It was a surprisingly effective pep talk for Pit, who took the words to heart and decided to start with saving one specific person.

He left to find the boy in question, and given that the Tinkerslug's deck wasn't very large it wasn't long until he spotted Omori. He sat alone by the short stairwell, but he wasn't about to be that way for long.

"Hey!" the angel greeted, not hesitating to sit cross-legged in front of Omori. It seemed like Omori was trying to cheer himself up, so Pit jumped right in with his opinion. "About what happened... everyone knows it was an accident, they're just being stubborn. I hope you aren't beating yourself up too bad about it."

"Hm? Oh." Omori looked up to see Pit had sat down in front of him. Ah, they thought it was an accident?

....Was it an accident? He didn't know anymore.

His eyes trailed back down to the bobblehead. "I...I wasn't thinking. I only knew you were getting attacked." Omori's gaze went downcast towards the wooden floor. He looked lost. "I just wanted to protect you guys."

Pit nodded, understanding where Omori was coming from. "It happens. Especially up close. Your brain gets so focused on protecting yourself or your family or your friends, and eventually all you know is that you have to win no matter what." He sat back with his palms braced against the deck. "I've seen that a lot of times with humans."

He tapered off, growing unsure if Omori actually was human. He had the same general feel as one, and there was definitely a part of him that was, but there was some otherness about him as well. After a moment he went on, figuring the details didn't matter. "Anyway, we just have to remember, move on, and be better! Okay?"

Omori nodded, looking back to Pit with a neutral expression.

"...He had a family." He spoke up again after a moment. "I'm not even sure why or what they were doing so close to a warzone, but they were right there. Watching. I didn't even realize the gravity of what I did, until I heard that kid's wailing..." Omori confided to the angel. Maybe in some ironic sense of confessing his sins, or just that he felt more comfortable talking to him about it. The boy placed a hand over his heart. "It hurt, more than whatever blood they could shed from me. That turtle looking kid didn't help either. Junior, was it? He seems kinda bratty, but I don't blame him. It just made me think: What if it was my own sister? What if I was the kid in that kind of situation? It...sucks." He slightly frowned.

Pit probably would have giggled at the description of Bowser Jr., if not for the conversation at hand.

"...yeah, it does. It really does," he agreed. Pit had been on both sides of that feeling before, having seen the devastation and misery wrought by his soulless body as well as his own gut wrenching helplessness while seeing his Goddess' many near death experiences. He could vividly imagine the despair he would have felt if any had been permanent. Pit leaned forward, resting his arms on his knees.

"It's alright to feel bad about it. It'd be weird if you didn't. I still feel bad about... um, well, a lot of stuff. And I'm probably like-" He gave Omori a look from head to toe. "-three times your age."

Omori tilted his head at that. Well, it'd make sense if Pit only looked around his age. Maybe a little older. He couldn't help counting the numbers in his head. ...Wow. 36?

"But just remember our mission, and all the people we'll help too. Save the next person. And if you can't, then... well, then rely on the rest of us!" He offered Omori a smile then, hoping to share some of his optimism with the other boy.

And you know what? He did.

A genuine smile crept onto Omori's face in response. "I'll try. If anything, I can just get them weakened enough for someone else to step in like with Annetta." And he hoped it wouldn't be a full repeat. That moonlight still stung. "And uh, sorry for rambling like that. I'm more used to being the one to hear someone else out." He nervously chuckled, no matter how quiet it was.

"Hehehe, don't worry! To be honest I'm usually in your spot, with Lady Palutena hearing me out." That he was able to get through to Omori did more for Pit's confidence than the boy could know. Without the Goddess of Light's reassuring voice in his head, it was a struggle to drum up the courage to do a lot of things, including reach out to others. He had been feeling especially bad since that morning's incident with Geralt. But reaching out successfully now made him really glad, and seeing Omori's smile widened his own.

"You can talk to me anytime you need to!" he said. "I'm sure it's gonna get even tougher from here, so we all have to look out for each other."

"...Yeah. Thanks, Pit."
In WARNING 10 days ago Forum: Spam Forum
THIS IS IT BOYS, WHETHER WE DIE TONIGHT OR LIVE TO SEE TH' SUN, WE GO DOWN LIKE KINGS!

FIRE AT WILL!!!


"...It's the eye isn't it?"
"Hope none of us pissed 'em off back in yesteryear."
- Finn and Oliver


Coincidence? Well, Finn hadn't given much thought into Nefer's appearance. If anything she'd most likely be stopping at Penrose temporarily. Maybe to sell the wares that filled their mode of transport? He wondered if the artifacts were handmade, or stolen from some powerful beings. Would explain why she and her little friend were constantly on the run. Perhaps if things go well enough, he could ask Nefer about it. Maybe buy one off her. He was trying to get stronger after all.

His idle thoughts were interrupted when he felt Iron Mouse lay across the seated trio. He rose a brow at the giant-in-scale blood pillow Justine created, and even more so at their fourth's words. "Right, just please refrain from kicking me in the gut. I actually like this suit..." He said back to Iron Mouse, resting one elbow by the car window.

"So does this mean I can pat your head?" Oliver spoke up, innocently glancing down at Iron Mouse. They were so busy talking that they hadn't noticed the vehicle was moving so fast. "Well damn! Why hadn't we run into ya sooner?" The ghost's attention moved from the view from his window back to Nefer with a grin. That grin quickly faded when she noted that Finn looked familiar. The two passed a side glance to one another.

"Please tell me you hadn't run into them before and forgot about it."

"Of course I haven't! The damn titles tend to get passed around, you know this!"

"Then what are we going to do? Far as we know she can sick that golem on us if you somehow managed to piss her off too!"

"Why do you have to assume I willingly make people want me dead??"

"HELLO?? SINNER OF WRATH???"

"Ugh, right. Well if she's going to use an alias, we might as well too."

After the brief back and forth, the duo looked back to Nefer.

"Call me Fable." Finn spoke up first.

"Name's Grimm!" Oliver "introduced" himself next, pointing a thumb to himself with a smile.
In WARNING 11 days ago Forum: Spam Forum
THEY'RE BEHIND US

Mentions: All in Attendance. Again.


Bianca managed to wake up early in preparations for the opening ceremony. Since she wasn't pissed out drunk like a select few of their group, she was one of the ones that dragged said few back to their homes. Or rides, at the very least. Gratually waking herself up as she and Rose worked together to get ready to go, she decided to wear something lighter than her previous outfit and just change to her gym challenge uniform when it's almost time. Bianca folded the uniform up and stored it in a satchel. As for her pokemon?

"B-Bumble! Hecate, Momo, F-Flurry! You're with us, come on!" She called the ones not yet in their pokeballs to her at the front door, all excited to join her and their friends at the ceremony. Though Bumble did have to catch Flurry before he accidentally ran into the wall. Bianca stiffled a chuckle at that. "A-Alright, alright. Save that f-fire for the challenge!" She grinned. She opened the door-

Before the group could step outside though, Bianca's phone vibrated. "Hm?" She stopped to check who texted her. The Chairman's urgent message had reached her before the news about the ceremony being canceled. Her eyes widened as she read it, then she looked back to her pokemon. "C-Change of plans. You three, hold down the fort w-while we're gone. Rose, you're w-with us. I've a b-bad feeling about this..." Hecate, Flurry, and Momo scampered back to the couch while Bianca called her Darmanitan into his pokeball, and her Gardevoir quietly walked up to her side. The two hurried out as quick as they could.

...

..

Bianca and Rose were the first ones there. The two remained quiet as the rest of the gym leaders gradually arrived. Bianca gave them an empathic frown. She had finally saw the news that the opening ceremony was canceled, and was just as lost as the rest of them. Then once Hyacinth finally arrived to explain everything, her eyes widened in dread.

Ryker has been kidnapped. His Pokemon were taken too.

And Hyacinth expected them to continue on like nothing's happened? To not get involved, yet stick together in case one of them were next?? In the midst of concerned questions and understandable outrage, Bianca remained quiet. She wanted to say something. Anything. If anyone looked her direction they could see her open her mouth as if she was, then quickly shut it back up. There was nothing she could say that the others hadn't already. Rose, sensing the dismay in the room, did her best to calm the gym leaders down.

"I-I..." Bianca didn't know what to do. She passed a worried glance to everyone, especially Hestia, then stood up from her seat. "I-I need to step out f-for a m-moment..." She nodded to her gardevoir, knowing she would keep an eye on them, then stepped out of the room. She took a deep breath and leaned against the wall next to the door.

"G-Goddamnit..."

"WHY DID THAT NOT KILL HIM???"
Current Location: Precinct #11

Casting an AoE and Damage X note would negate it down to a normal Damage note, but casting Speedster on himself would partially make up for the cost. It got rid of the flies. And more importantly, it managed to slip through Betty's defensive melody via the boils like he anticipated. Even Finn couldn't help bit cringe back at the sickening sight. And her screams, goddamnit, those idiots up there better hurry up and kill Justin so he didn't have to hurt her any more. With her blinded by opened wounds, he was able to dodge her attack and drive his weapon into her shoulder. To avoid getting hit again by her flailing, he quickly yanked it back out and kept at a distance.

Then, at the end of the flurry, Betty finally went out of her esper state. The Timekeeper's eyes widened. His heart ached as despite everything, her will to fight remained strong as ever. Her white dress was dyed red by the blood that fell from the heavens as if angels cried.

....Too dramatic? Yeah. This was going on too long for his liking.

Besides, there was a silver lining in this. He didn't have to be lethal towards her any longer. As Betty, in her desperation, dove in like her bow was a makeshift blade, Finn's rapier connected with it and pushed it aside. He pointed a finger gun her direction and fired a restraining melody, a bolt of lightning tying her arms against her sides like rope.

"Game over, B." He finally spoke up to her. "I don't want to fight you-" The boy was interrupted when the seventh spell was in effect, and a pebble of hail struck him on the head, causing him to flinch. Then as more began to pour down, bigger than the last, he quickly picked Betty up and sprinted inside the precinct. He did his best to shield her from the hailstorm, even if it left reasonable dents in his body.


Bowser Jr

wordcount: 8,533 (+9)
Bowser Jr: Level 9 EXP: ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (225/90)
Location: Sea of Serendipity


”What the…”

A safe distance away from the ambushed ship, Omori was admittedly caught off guard by what he was witnessing. Maybe it was dumb luck that he lagged behind far enough to avoid direct involvement in that. So the rest managed to drag that one ship out of the Kove? That’s neat. If it wasn’t currently being attacked by fleets of ACTUAL pirates. Though it looks like neither of them took notice of him yet, thank goodness for that. Perks of being the quiet type. Omori took the opportunity to map out a plan. The enemies below water were a hard pass, and he didn’t see a way up the friendly ship from where he was. He couldn’t exactly shoot down either ship with just a weird pistol either.

But that turret looked like some decent firepower. If he can just take out whoever was using it, that could be a good form of leverage for his team.

So if anyone caught sight of him, the boy could be seen speeding over to the Port-O-Panic in his rowboat. Time to put his new weapons to use.

”Hey wait up!” came a call from behind as Jr came whizzing through the air, propeller blade of his clown car just cm above the surf swaying below it.

”You're gonna take that on your own? That’s crazy! Crazy cool!” Jr called over as he started catching up, before insisting that: ”But I’m coming with you. Don’t worry tho, teaming up with me is even cooler!”

Without turning his full attention away from his destination, Omori’s head turned towards the direction of the prince. An unexpected teammate, but a welcome one nonetheless. With a nod, he slowed down enough to where Junior’s clown car matched his pace. ”I’m not sure what we’ll be facing up there, but I want to take control of the turret away from them.” Omori explained as briefly as he could. ”If all else fails, think you can destroy it?” He asked.

”Take it down?” Jr asked, and then took a look at the rapidly approaching tower. It was, he noted, pretty top heavy, a whole platform, roof, and massive pair of skulls all held up by a single (comparatively thin) central wooden pillar. This made him grin as he hit a button and a pair of saw blade tipped robot arm deployed from the side of the car ”Might take a while, but I can have 'em screaming timber if stuff up top’s too hot to handle!” he said, before storing the blades again to keep up his speed and adding ”Not that we won’t be able to take em, bet i’ve handled way worse than whatever cannon manning mooks are hiding there”

Which was about the moment that said mooks took notice of their incoming attackers and switched from bombing the boat to trying to introduce the kids to the fishies.

”Wah! Look out!” Jr cried out as the first big chunky cannonball came whooshing through the air and then splashed down beside them, sending a ripple of a wave washing out towards the pair.

Omori snapped his head towards the only place that attack came from and furrowed his brows. Dang it, he was hoping they wouldn’t notice them just a bit longer! The boy took to the evasive, steering away from any cannonballs that came too close for comfort. Then he slowly realized something, as most of the turret fire aimed at the duo was slow, and some didn’t even come near them.

Whoever was up there…was an absolute amateur! Did he even have to worry??

”Cover me.” Once he reached the base of the lookout tower, Omori grabbed the ladder that hung off the side, and began his climb up to the top.

Jr meanwhile had come to the same conclusion and had been buzzing to and fro childishly going ”Can’t hit me can’t hit me na na na na” as he drew fire from the incompetent gunners before racing up the side of the ladder past Omori. He pulled out a pokeball and chucked it up so it bounced onto the roof and deployed Mimi in a flash of light, the boy timing it so that his pokemon dropped down onto the banister on the right side of the ladder at the same moment as he himself zoomed into view on the left side of it, clown car boxing gloves at the ready.

The climbers’ approach, though hardly unnoticed by the gunners, met no resistance even after they left the turret’s line of fire. “Where’d they go!?” a panicked, high-pitched woman’s voice cried as they ascended. “They were there last time I looked! Did they get by us?”

“Must have. We’ve got to warn the others!” a gruff, elderly voice said in reply, already hoarse from the exertion of tired old bones.

“But what else can we do!? Everyone’s already holed up indoors. LeFwee and the others were supposed to protect us!” By that time the young’uns scaled the last few rungs, and in the dazzling flash of Junior’s pokeball they made their entrance.

“Eek! They’re here!” Annetta squealed, taken by surprise and half-blinded by the sudden glare. The nymph stumbled backward, tripped over the butt of the cannon, and hit the deck in a tangle of sea-blue hair. Red-faced from embarrassment as much as from the effort of loading the cannon again and again, she struggled to try and get upright. Her comrade fared little better; the marine iguana Reme reached for a nearby harpoon gun to defend himself only for it to slip from his grasp and clatter across the planks, forcing him to shuffle after it like a child after a runaway ball. When he finally grabbed hold of the weapon and aimed it at the intruders, his hands were shaking from nerves, causing the harpoon’s tip to wobble precariously. Only then did Annetta finally manage to right herself, adjusting her seashells furiously to make sure nothing was amiss before darting behind Reme for protection. “D-don’t get any closer!” she squeaked, but after swallowing her fear she seemed to find her resolve. Fists clenched, the nymph used her magic to levitate a handful of stones, ready to throw at the little monsters and the ghostly, knife-wielding child. “We won’t let you take our lives!”

This was it? These two were the ones firing at them? They didn’t even look like they wanted to fight. In fact, they seemed to be afraid of both Omori and Junior, and that funny looking creature the latter summoned. Of course, Omori wasn’t as afraid of them and their weapons as they might have hoped. The blade wielder dusted himself off and stared at the duo with indifference.

”Take your lives??” He noted what Annetta said, and one of his brows rose. ”I can’t speak for the rest but it looks to me like it’s the other way around. I don’t even know who you are, or why you’ve decided to ambush my companions.” He said with a blunt tone. After a moment, Omori let a sigh slip out.

”Be honest, do you really want to fight us?”

”Trust me, it’s never gone well for anyone else '' Jr added (to which Mimi added a supportive ‘kyu!’) while punching his palm while grinning toothily at them as he hovered just behind the monochrome knife wielding child.

The two gunners shrank back somewhat. In their eyes, it sounded like the invaders were telling them not to bother even resisting. Sure, Port O’ Panic and the pirate crews took the initiative, but how could they have just let themselves get picked off, knowing what they did? But now they’d messed up, and the murderers were at their doorstep, ready to take revenge on their victims for daring to put up a fight. Reme tightened his grip on his harpoon gun. “Maybe not,” he growled, teeth clenched. “But we won’t go quietly!”

“Consul, sir!” Annetta pleaded. Her desperate gaze switched from Omori and Junior to the turret’s central support post, halfway between the two pairs. “I-I-I know it’s not our place to ask, but isn’t there anything you can do to help us? Anything?”

“Hmm.” From the opposite side of the column, hidden from the newcomers’ view, a new voice revealed the presence of an unknown third party. “Is this not your moment?” the stranger drawled, his accented tone that of an erudite sophisticate. “In each of our lives, we are faced with a single, defining moment to paint upon the tapestry of history our truest colors, and this, it would seem, is yours. To make manifest your love for your home and its people, and shelter them from harm. With enough conviction, even the meekest of souls can achieve the impossible, yes? You need only believe.”

From behind the pillar slid a figure, an impressive seven feet in height, but slender, and adorned in a suit of cherry-red armor. A luxurious black cape fluttered at his back, partially hiding his figure, and the intricate crested helmet with its axe-like half-discs on either side looked over the stranger’s shoulder just enough for mahogany-brown eyes to peer through the x-shaped visor.

Did Junior’s comment only make this worse? Perhaps. Were the other duo going to listen to reason? Probably not.

Did the stranger that decided to reveal himself seem trustworthy? Absolutely not. Already Omori saw the third party as manipulative. His attention drawn away from Annetta and Reme, he furrowed his brows at the voice, and his eyes widened at how tall its source was compared to him. ”...Hm. So it’s like that then.” The youth brushed his bangs back, and allowed himself to scowl at the opposing trio.

”Rough ‘em up!!” He called to Junior, drawing his machete and pistol out.

”Blech, what a load of old mush'' Jr gagged at the weirdo red guy’s speech, before he smacked a button and a set of two boxing gloves deployed from his clown car. The groves gave a practice one two punch before Jr informed the poor fools that ”I’m gonna knock some sense into you chumps. Because I wanna and not coz he said to'' before kicking it into gear and charging forwards while Mimi pulled a sneaky and sent her shadow to give the harpoon guy a swat on the back to disrupt his aim.

Reme gasped and jerked suddenly, throwing his aim off Junior and, in a stroke of terrible luck, toward Omori. His trigger finger locked up, and the spear flew in the general direction of the boy’s right thigh. Even in the hands of an old lizard, the weapon did its job, and its payload flew with dangerous speed behind its cutting edge. Annetta, meanwhile, threw her pebbles at Junior’s clown car ineffectually, reaching out for nearby pieces of wood to hurl in her panic.

The stranger, meanwhile, stepped away to give the combatants room. “You’d be wise not to mistake kindness for weakness!” he warned the newcomers, crossing his arms. On his chest glowed a purple core. “It’s times of dire need, just such as these, that give rise to the greatest of heroes!”

“Heroes…” Annetta breathed, her and Reme’s hasty retreat from Junior leaving both backed into a corner. She understood in that moment that her Consul was helping–to inspire even a damsel in distress like her to fight for what she believed in. “I won’t let my friends down! Take this!” She put her palms together to manifest an orb of moonlight, then released her magic in a desperate flurry of projectiles.

”Grr!’ Omori would have to deal with the stranger afterwards. Seeing the harpoon gun fired at him, he quickly swung his blade low to deflect it. In a stroke of luck, it narrowly missed his leg. He’ll have to be careful and keep his emotions in check. Omori might pack an extra punch while he was angry, but it can cause him to let his guard down. Snapping his head toward Reme he charged at the lizard, going in for an attempt to sever that gun-toting arm of his.

The boy caught Reme midway through his attempt to jump another harpoon into his launcher and cut straight through the wetsuit into his opponent’s arm. His machete failed to shear through both flesh and bone, but blood poured from the slice wound. Reme let out a strangled cry of pain as the gun clattered to the planks below, but now that he’d been attacked, Galeem’s influence took over. Holding the harpoon like a spear with his good arm, the old iguana jabbed at Omori’s body again and again.

”If that were true every terrified toad’d be a hero!'' Jr yelled back at the man in red, before being proven at least somewhat wrong when the fairy he was charging did her best to fight back with a shower of sparkles. ”Tch'' went the boy, before shouting ”Goomba meatshield!'' and summoning a gang of squat little strikers right in the path of the incoming volley.

The poor things were hammered this way and that by the moonlight magic, and a bit of that reflected onto Jr, but it was massively mitigated by this delegation of the blow. As was the added damage of him then plowing straight through the remainder of the goomba pile and continuing to go straight for the fishy crowned fairy, a princess-napping claw primed and ready to snatch her up with well practiced style.

Annetta shrank back, screwing her eyes shut,but before the pincer grabbed hold it -and by extension the whole clown car- bounced off a cuboid forcefield around her, revealing it in the process. The force rippled across its magic surface, briefly giving Junior a look at the six-sided blue barrier inlaid with intricate glyphs. When nothing hit her Annetta blinked for a moment, confused. “I’m okay!?” A sudden surge of confidence brought a smile to her face and the glint of hope to her eyes. “I’m okay! My turn!” She reached out with her magic to levitate the cannon itself, wielding it like a massive, improvised club. Realizing that Reme was hurt, she ignored Junior to swing it at Omori first.

Omori blocked each spear jab, trying to find the opportune moment to go in for another slice. Though, with his focus solely on Reme, he did not anticipate the diver’s ally to attack him as well. Once he raised his blade up to swing down on his opponent, he didn’t have time to react against Annetta’s makeshift club even if he saw her from the corner of his eye. Omori was struck down onto the floor with a hard thud.

Jr’s head was still spinning from the unexpected car crash, so the best he could do was yell ”Mimi! Help him. By copying her!'' to his presently deployed Pokemon, who had already been rushing over to help

“Mi Mi!” she replied before arriving by Omori’s side and copycatting the magic Annetta had used to lift up the cannon, and using it to grab that same cannon as well as it came close, wrestling the fairy for control over the oversized bludgeon.

Annetta’s attempt to bring the cannon barrel around for another strike met unexpected resistance in the form of the Mimikyu’s stolen levitation. “H-hey!” the nymph protested, trying to yank the giant bludgeon toward herself like a tug-of-war rope. “Let it go, you weird puppet! Reme, are you okay?”

Just the sound of the old diver’s breathing told her that he wasn’t. With one hand on his wound to try to staunch the flow, but unable to retreat, Reme hobbled toward the downed Omori to try and finish him off with a harpoon hab beneath the ribs.

Emitting a grunt, Omori pushed himself up off the floor to see Reme approaching him. Wounded, but not wounded enough for his liking. Gritting his teeth he bounced back up onto his feet, and swapped his gun out for his knife. The boy with plenty of fight still left in him charged at the lizard with grim intentions. With his machete, he shoved the harpoon aside, opening a way for his knife to stab him where it hurts most. Dead in the heart.

Which was about the time Jr got back in the fight with a helpful shout of ”I gotcha'' to the kid he thought was in trouble as his clown car coming buzzing in at high speed just over head height with boxing gloves deployed to deliver a much less lethal sock to the gutt. It was something of an unintentional race to see who’d strike down the old codger, and how.

Who defeated him was anyone’s guess, but who killed him was plain to see. Reme jerked violently as the blade entered his chest, scraping off ribs to plunge into the source of his life’s blood. A combination of shock and absolute agony dropped the old diver in a second, his eyes wide as he slumped to the floor.

“Reme! Nooo!” Annetta cried, forgetting all about the cannon she and Mimi were fighting over. The total loss of resistance sent the hunk of steel straight into the Pokemon at full force, dealing a massive, mostly self-inflicted wallop, but the nymph didn’t seem to care. She tried to fly over only for Omori and Junior to block her way, forcing her to backpedal to safety lest she run afoul of the kid’s blade, too.

That wasn’t all, though. A sudden wail reached the fighters from outside the turret platform, in the direction of the connected sea tower. “Grampaaaaa!” the young voice cried, belonging to a small purple marine iguana, stumbling across the bridge from the cluster of tent-covered shacks nearby. His parents, realizing that their son had slipped out without them noticing while they watched in fear from afar, started yelling too. “DIMITRI!” the father howled, running to unbar the front door while the mother tried to squeeze through the window. “GET BACK HERE, NOW!”

Distracted, Dimitri tripped and fell onto the plank bridge, spraying tears from his eyes. “Grampa…” he gasped. “Who’s…gonna tell your stories…now?”

But the old-timer had already capitulated. The shock to his already-infirm system meant that even if he had enough blood left to pump, the oxygen wouldn’t reach his brain. His life flickered out before he could even extend a grasping hand to his grandson. Annetta fell to the floor in despair, and even the Consul closed his eyes.

For a moment, Omori hadn’t thought there would be consequence in his action. No matter the excuse, his knife was now stained in the sanguine of the late Reme. It had to be done. For the sake of the other Seekers.

So why did he have to screw up like this?

As the wail of a mournful child reached his ears, Omori seemed to…freeze up. His grip on the knife trembled, tightened, yet he didn’t pull it out. This guy, he had a family. A family, a grandson that could only watch as he took their grandfather away from them. An internal struggle brewed within Omori.

This wasn’t right.

This was self defense.

But they just wanted to defend their home.

At the cost of his companions' lives?

He could’ve been freed! What if it was someone you cared about!? What if it was…

Sunn- Omori shook his head out of the stupor and swiftly yanked his knife out. One down, and he knew who to turn his ire towards next. The Consul himself. The blade was pointed at the armored stranger.

By that time, however, the Consul had already opened his eyes, and his gaze was accusatory. “Oh, spare us the act,” he snapped, his tone harsh. “What, prithee, did you think might transpire when you aimed for his heart? You know well what it is you’re doing…and what you have left to do.” He glanced at the iguana family, who’d recovered their bawling son and were dragging him back toward their hovel, their eyes wet with tears themselves, as if that would keep them safe.

Annetta saw it too, and she clenched her teeth. “I’m sorry…Consul. It looks like we’re not…gonna make it.”

“Nay. The fault is mine.” The man shook his head. “Tis clear I underestimated these monsters. You’ve done all you can.”

“Not yet.” The nymph balled her fists, fluttered her wings, and rose from the floor in front of the Consul, streaming tears from her face. She knew what she needed to do. With her magic she reached out, seizing both Reme’s harpoon and one of the spare cannonballs, which she hovered over her palm for use as a makeshift wrecking ball. Streaming tears from her gleaming sunset-red eyes, she turned her fiercest face on her foes, even if it wasn’t all that fierce. “Just like poor Reme said. “We won’t go quietly!”

Accusatory gaze met a furious stare. By that time, a shadow had obscured Omori’s eyes, save for one whitened pupil. A spiteful retort bubbled in his throat, but he could only growl in response. The taller of the two had a point. He had aimed for a critical hit for a reason. But this wasn’t Headspace. Not anymore. He couldn’t just bring him back on a whim and act like everything was okay. The blood that dripped from his knife attested to that.

The vengeful Annetta had found her second wind. ”...You got her yet?!” Omori asked Junior, without looking over his shoulder.

”What part of ‘knock some sense into them’ did you not get!'' Jr shouted over his own shoulder as he squared up against Annetta who he then told: ”I know someone who can bring back the dead, but it needs all that ash to do it. If you still fight me, and it gets messed all over the place, this is gonna be on you instead of just that idiot''

”I heard that.”

”and?'' Jr replied dismissively ”what you gonna do about it?''

It might have been hard to tell, but Omori merely rolled his eyes in response.

“Enough of your games!” the nymph cried. She hurled the cannonball at Junior, while throwing the harpoon at Omori. Rather than just rely on her somewhat doughy throwing arm, though, Annetta cheated with her magic, both guiding her projectiles to her target and pulling them back afterward to use again.

Of course she wasn’t going to listen. Not after the fight escalated this far. Even if he didn’t want to, Omori was forced to turn his attention to the nymph and sidestep the harpoon thrown towards him. When he saw it retract back to its wielder, he got an idea. The boy baited another throw, and began to slice the harpoon apart each time it passed him.

Jr meanwhile took his problem head on, lifting up his claws, squaring his shoulders and catching the cannonball, the impact bruising the boy and sending the hovering car scooting backwards till it hit the deck, wheels deployed and breaking to bring prince and captured cannonball to a halt. Still, one of her weapons was his, and though he was stuck holding it, he had a teammate he could rely on

”Mimi! Zap her unconscious!'' he commanded breathlessly and his pokemon moved before he was even done talking, as if their wills were one. Mimi leaped atop the cannonball itself, arm wound back and then hurled her own orb of destruction back at the watery princess in the form of an electro ball.

The lightning blast burst against Annetta’s barrier, reducing the damage dealt to her to only a fraction of the Electro Ball’s original power–just enough for the nymph to feel it. This time, however, small cracks showed up in the cube-shaped shield. She relinquished her grip on the cannonball, turning it to dead weight in the prince’s arms, and unleashed a stream of rather weak moonlight bolts at both attackers. Evidently, what she lacked in offense, this barrier more than made up for in defense.

For how weak the bolts were, with Omori’s defenses so low, they managed to hit their target. Moonlight sliced through his skin, breaking red out of his black and white. He didn’t have to calm down yet, so he went to work breaking down the barrier. Once an opening was made he counted on Junior to knock her out this time. No one else was going to die by his reddened hands, not if he had anything to say about it.

Jr meanwhile had a convenient if incredibly heavy shield, the moonlight splashing against the cannonball instead of the one holding it. Then he ditched it and commanded Mimi to ”Keep up the pressure with shadow sneak'' before deploying they synapse bio electrical gun one one of his car’s robo arms and sending a ongoing stream of electricity towards the nymph while moving laterally away from the dust of the fallen Reme.

All three interlopers went on the offensive, and Annetta had no choice but to trust in the barrier while she fired back in turn. When Omori got close enough she favored a moonlight flash over individual bolts, but she sprayed a healthy amount at Junior and Mimi, too. Still, their damage quickly added up, and after just a couple moments the shield shattered.

Only to be immediately replaced by a second one. Annetta took no action to do so, and neither did the observant Consul, for that matter. It simply shimmered into existence around her, albeit with fewer glyphs than the one before. The nymph, fearful for a moment when the first shield broke down, got right back to it. More magic filled the air, this time joined by delayed moonlight explosions at specific points, but the frequency of her casts dwindled just a little. Her breathing was getting heavier; her chest heaved with hyperventilation. All her mana expenditure on top of her physical exertion was beginning to take a toll on her not-so-great stamina.

Mimi and jr did their best to dodge the incoming sparks, the tiny target that was the mon having the best luck at it, skipping between moonspray with ease although it did prevent her from doing any fighting back while doing all that running around and dodging. Jr meanwhile could (mostly) have avoided eating magic while keeping up on the offense too, his car allowing him to float from side to side and shoot at once: the prince hucking bouncing fireballs across the deck of the cannon tower while toughing out the spellfire that managed to scald against his scales.

When he noticed Mimi was having trouble actively contributing he made a switch, calling out ”come back Mimi'' and then tossing Dazzle’s pokeball straight up so that the Poppilo landed in the clown car with him where he ordered the mon ”Disarming voice, go!''

Dazzle obeyed, opening his mouth and sending out a musical pulse of pink sound waves that did emotional damage.

Omori on his end only grew more frustrated when one barrier was replaced with another. Okay, looks like tiring her out might be their only option. Brushing off the not-so deadly moonlight that struck at him, the boy aimed to break the glyphs off the second shield, remaining relentless as he could muster.

No matter whether the sources of damage were physical or ethereal, the barrier protecting Annetta stymied them all. Still, the punishment wore through her protection bit by bit, giving her little room with which to come up with new strategies. When both Junior and his Popplio united to attack from the shelter of the tyke’s clown car, however, an epiphany struck Annetta Fish. She reached out with her magic to try and seize the clown car itself, throwing it off-kilter and hopefully either into Omori or the turret’s central support pillar.

”Ah! That’s cheating!'' Jr cried out in alarm, before thinking fast and smacking a button and then bailing as a wrecking ball deployed out the bottom. While at first this might seem like an awful move, it gave Jr something to grab (the chain) as he dropped down to the ground to act as a living break, summoning up a troop of koopas to help him in trying to wrest control of the situation.

”Gah, shoulda stuck with Mimi'' Jr cursed before getting the mon he had out to help with ”Dazzle, use Penguin Jet!”

“Pilo!” the mon replied, the command letting him recover from his own panic. As trainer had ordered, he tossed himself out of the clow car, bounced on a bubble he made, and then went careening towards the fairy in a lighting fast stream of water, the impact sending a burst of dark energy into the shield for good measure that let Dazzle bounce away while he was at it.

Annetta tossed the clown car off to the side as best she could with a burst of magic, then braced herself instinctively for the pokemon’s attack. Of course, he just bounced off the second shield, though he did crack it further. With some more concerted effort, the barrier would give way. The nymph knew it too, and yanked free a wooden plank from the floor to swing around like a baseball bat in a desperate attempt to send Dazzle flying out into the sea.

”Ugh, this is getting us nowhere!” Brute force was only leaving small dents in the nymph’s defenses, and with Junior’s vehicle getting compromised, Omori had to speed this up. NOW. And there was one thing he hadn’t tried yet. Putting some distance between him and Annetta, he swapped back to the pistol and fired it at the barrier. The fiery wallop of the gunshot did a number of the barrier, leaving it on its last legs. Just a little more would do it, but if Omori tried to shoot again immediately, the flintlock would click empty.

”Wowowowowow!'' Jr cried out as he and his minions were dragged towards the edge by the sudden punt which set them all teetering on the edge, the wrecking ball they were holding onto both a blessing and a curse as it stopped the car from dropping, but also starten to thereent to just roll off and drag them along with it.

Behind him the land locked Dazzle did his best to hop out of the way of the swinging plank bat, dodging once, twice, and then on the third getting a right old smack and sailing away with a cry of “popopopopiillo” as he went blasting off.

”Dazzle!'' jr cried out in alarm as the mon when flying up, and then he made a snap decision and leapt off of the platform after him, both minion and master disappearing from view as the wrecking ball lurched and then got dragged off the edge, the koopas failing to hold it falling down with it.

Victory, at least! Well, some semblance of it, at least. A wheezing laugh escaped Annetta, as if she couldn’t believe she’d done it. But that wasn’t to say things were looking good from her. Her wingbeat had slowed, and her breathing gotten even heavier as she sunk low enough for her feet to scrape the floor. The nymph was exhausted. It took a lot of effort for her to put her hand together and fire a couple moonlight bolts at Omori, the sole opponent who remained.

Welp. There goes his teammate. Omori’s further attempts to fire the pistol would come up with nothing. Sure it managed to do a greater number on Annetta’s defenses, but what now? He didn’t see any form of ammunition when he found the two weapons, and stabbing didn’t seem to do much either. He raised his machete up to block the brunt of the bolts fired at him. Then the boy began to put the pieces together. There was a reason why it didn’t feel right separating the pair of weapons. Perhaps…

Once another opening was cleared Omori went back in, slashing and stabbing away at the barrier. And when he felt it was enough, he bounded back once more to fire a second round. He was certain, this’ll finish it.

The boy’s slashes shattered the shield, opening the way for a final shot. Feedback from the attack knocked Annetta to the ground, tired and hurt by the bleedthrough of all the attacks she’d received. Before Omori could finish her off, however, a third barrier sprang up. This one looked even weaker than the last, however, and Annetta only barely managed to muster some moonlight magic, meaning that Omori could whittle down what must be the last shield to his heart’s content.

Which was when Jr reappeared, the mad monster kid having jumped into his dangling clown car, rasered controle, swept around and caught Dazzle before buzzing back up at an unexpected angle. ”can’t get rid of us that easy!'' jr cried out before waiting for a response and not really getting one from the pooped fairy.

”Oh. Huh. Well this is over then'' he said, hovering over while weaving between attacks. When he got close he deployed a pair of chucky drills on robot arms from his car and driving both forwards so that they crossed over and delivered their drill attack specifically to the shield, with no risk of hitting fairy herself even once they broke through. Omori took a moment to step to the side, just in case.

”When it breaks, hit her with another disarming voice!'' he commanded, priming her for an (emotionally) crushing defeat.

With only a token resistance to slow him down, Junior broke through the shield after a bit of sustained drilling, a portion of which bled through to the despairing fairy inside. When the barrier finally succumbed to the fractures, two things happened at once. The Popplio attacked Annetta with its weaponized voice, and from the magical remnants of the barrier a burst of bright green floral magic restored her to full health. When the nymph lifted her head after being smacked against the turret box’s railing, she found herself in unexpectedly good condition, above the Friend Heart threshold and able to fight with the very last of her stamina, as Galeem’s influence demanded.

Omori found himself dumbfounded again. How the heck did she get healed back to square one?! They were trying to tire her out! The boy wasn’t sure that even Mr. Consul had a hand in it either, so what or who could it be? He had calmed down slightly, yet remained enraged. He looked around for any possible culprits in hiding, and promptly got beaned by a moonlight bolt in the forehead. Right, still fighting.

Jr threw up his arms and cried out ”Oh come on!'' before fuming looking around and instead of spotting the cannon laying on the ground.
”You know what, bolts to this'' he said, driving over in his car, grabbing the big gun hauling it up over his head and preparing to toss it…. Off of the tower.

Their original plan of taking the turret for themselves went out the window anyway. Seeing no other alternative, Omori had to continue fighting Annetta on his end. Hopefully stalling her long enough for his ally to get rid of that stupid cannon. Now that he had figured out how his piratical weapons worked, he held no hesitance in using his pistol.

But the guilt, buried under his wrath from killing Reme, was urging him to hold back. With the barrier down, every slash drew blood. His opponent possessed no defense whatsoever, and now that she could feel the full pain of every attack, she wanted nothing more than to run, but Galeem’s influence would not allow it. Immersed fully in pain and despair, she could only struggle feebly to form and fire her magic as tears streamed down her face.

”Alright you’re done'' came a voice from behind Omori as a scaled hand grabbed his collar and Jr (having successfully ventured his frustration via cannon caber toss) hauled the blade wielding child out of the way. Omori put up no fight against the small koopa. He did enough, and only responded with a deep breath to calm down further. The prince took over finishing the fight and delivered a stunning headbutt to the fairy’s own noggin, before snapping his fingers and flicking a friend heart into her chest to put an end to this farce.

“Ugh!” Annetta hit the ground, slipping into unconsciousness as she lost blood, only to reawaken with her health and stamina fully restored. For a moment, a look of bewilderment overtook her. “I…whuh?”

”About time.” Omori spoke up, returning back to his cliff-faced expression now that she was freed. He’ll have to take note to learn how to make one of those friend heart things for next time. But for now, he glanced between Annetta and Junior, then to-

…Oh.

Guess Junior’s resurrection idea wasn’t going to cut it. In the midst of their fight, the dust that used to be Reme was too scattered by the time things settled. Omori glanced away with a regretful frown. ”The others will explain everything, but for now you should get to somewhere safe.” He told Annetta.

”And that’s your problem now'' Jr told Omori before rolling his neck and turning towards the red armored man ”And I’m yours. What is even your problem, pulling this on us, huh? What did we ever do to you?'

S merely tilted his head. A wooden plank slammed down on Junior’s own noggin from behind. “What in the world are you talking about!?” Annetta seethed, aglow with the power of moonlight. Her eyes held no trace of Galeem’s influence, but they shone with anger. “I’m not through with you yet! I don’t know what you did, or what all these memories mean, but if you think I’m just going to lie down, you’ve got another think coming!”

Around the Seekers, the turret box began to come apart. Annetta ripped the planks up piece by piece, creating a battering maelstrom of debris. “You people killed Reme! Our protectors are dying out there! I’m the only one left to keep everyone safe! If I give up now, everything we did until now to survive, all the people we’ve lost…even if I’m worthless, I won’t let it be for nothing!” In the midst of the storm, as the ground beneath her foes’ feet broke apart bit by bit, she unleashed a flurry of magic bolts.

”Then don’t let it!”

With his focus returned, Omori took to the evasive. ”Look, I don’t know what my companions might be facing right now. But even if your group technically attacked first, I’d think they know better than to mindlessly kill!” He attempted to talk Annetta down. The desperate outburst seemed far more out of the ordinary for someone like him. ”I know I made a terrible decision, and I know nothing will make up for it! I wasn’t thinking! But you can help the rest of your friends just as mine helped you and me! Please! We can end this!” He pleaded.

”Owwww'' Jr rubbed his head and then turned back to face the furious fairy ”Oh come on! You really made a mess of everything you know'' Jr told Omori as he went back into the fight, the boy hovering over the killer and covering him. ”you get one shot at fixing this and then I’m taking over'' the prince told him as he used a pair of saw blade arms to hack apart some of the planks as they came swinging in while Dazzle, sat beside his trainer, used water gun to push others away.

With what Annetta had been through and the current raw state of her mind, Omori’s confusing speech ended in what sounded like an offer to relieve her of her pain. She knew that she’d be lying if she said the offer didn’t tempt her; she wasn’t a warrior, after all. When it came down to it, she was little more than an assistant who’d somehow been promoted after the loss of her boss, and not one ‘hired’ for her smarts or skills, at that. She didn’t want to hurt anymore. But she also meant what she said.

“You’ll have to make me!” the nymph cried. With a slamming motion from both hands she sent a wave of debris through what remained of the turret structure, threatening to wash both assailants overboard, or through one of the many holes opened in the floor.

She wasn’t listening. Not even when Omori didn’t wish to fight her anymore. Junior’s comment didn’t help relieve his guilt either. They were running out of breathing room, and somehow the Consul hadn’t done anything yet. Who was he kidding? Omori looked back up to the other boy and nodded to him, swiftly moving out of the way. He’s done enough damage as is, and there was only a slim chance Annetta would listen to a murderer him. He ducked behind the central pillar.

”Urgh, fine, I’ll clean up your mess'' Jr sighed and then hit the throttle, flying over the top of the wet wave and aiming to end this the same way he had at the start. Claw deployed and ready to princess nap her. The pincer closed around her middle, leaving Junior almost point-blank for a moonlight orb.

Having her grabbed in the caw jr then reached out grabbed her in his own claw inorder to haul her into and over the shoulder carry, arms pinned at her side in a classic princess napping grapple so she couldn't point and shoot at anyone who wasn’t directly in front of him. She got back at him by bonking him again with another scrap of wood, albeit a little inaccurately, and with her renewed stamina kicked at his face with her legs. After a moment she remembered her strategy from earlier, and extended her magic to interfere with the clown car’s flight systems again.

”What, ow, you can, just, ow!'' jr complained as he got thwacked over and over ”Dazzle do something!''

“Polio” the pokemon sitting next to him replied, then leaned over next to her head in order to deliver its Disarming Voice directly to her ear.

The sonic punishment left Annetta’s head swimming, the aches in her heart intensified. She continue to try to break free, but she couldn’t focus, and the grip of Junior’s pincer closed tighter around her middle. “Guuh,” she gasped, starting to turn red. Her eyes landed on the Consul, and she reached out toward me. “C-Consul,” she choked out. “Help! Please!”

For a moment the Consul froze, his eyes narrowed. Then he groaned and snapped his fingers. “Repose.” Pink magic swirled around Junior, and the young koopa promptly fell asleep, losing control of his ride in the process. Able to breathe again, Annetta wrestled with the pincer in an attempt to squeeze herself loose.

Watching the young prince get knocked asleep from where he hid, Omori hurried to use Sad Poem on Annetta, slowing her struggling down slightly.

The machine fell to the floor with a bonk, jostling Dazzle and ending the sonic attack. The pokemon shook its head and then looked to Jr for instructions, only to find hom dozing. Well that wouldn't do. The mon raised a flipper and gave him a slap across the chops, and if that didn't work, well, a spray of water and an icy wind might do in its stead.

The prince shook his head, just in time for Annetta to slip free. ”Urg, what. What happened?'' the prince shook his head clear, and wiped the water off his face and then noticed their surprisingly resilient foe had escaped ”Hey, get back here!'' he shouted, making a grab for her to put an end to this the old fashioned way. A hefty headbut to the noggin to knock her out.

Another punishing bout of head trauma left Annetta stunned, momentarily unable to fly. By now, her desperate efforts to destroy her foes had taken out about sixty percent of the structure’s floor, leaving vast holes with nothing but air for hundreds of feet to perilous, debris-filled water. As she stumbled the nymph tripped over a cracked board, gouging her ankle, and with a cry of pain she toppled backward over the drop. “Forgive…me!”

”Oh for-'' Jr began before smacking a button and shouting ”Hook grab her. Gently!'' as eponymous sentient meathook was field out of his clown car’s mouth, Hook cannoning down after her, aiming to catch up and then swing round to wrap its chain around her and hook onto itself in a non-gory catch at best, and at worst, well, this was gonna hurt.

”That’s gonna leave a mark.” Omori couldn’t help cringe at the nymph tripping over one of the cracks in the platform. Just how resilient was this lady? Why hadn’t his fellow audience member played a more active role in this? Why did he keep questioning this stupid fight? Who knows. This was giving him a headache. The boy looked over to the armored stranger. ”For someone who’s definitely not suspicious, you seem fine not fighting with her.” He spoke to him with faint sarcasm.

The Consul, who’d been pretending Omori didn’t exist whilst the boy glowered at him, looked idly out to sea. “I have no right to interfere. This moment is hers…and yours.” He put his fingers together in the shape of a rectangle, looking through it at the battle being waged on the water as if to capture a snapshot of the whole chaotic affair. “To fly your true colors, for all to see.”

”Hasn’t she suffered enough by my hand? This isn’t my moment anymore.” Omori responded, looking down at the blood that hadn’t washed off him in the storm. Wonder how he was going to explain this to the others.

S shook his head in disdain, his laughter derisive and dry. “Perhaps. You whelps have demonstrated more than enough cruelty. For all her painstaking effort, it seems as though our leading lady’s curtain call has arrived.”

Through the gaps in the floorboards, everyone could see the results of Junior’s Hail Mary. In order to succeed, he needed his hook to surpass Annetta falling at terminal velocity, bend under her, and then ascend far enough to create a loop. Against all odds, the maneuver succeeded, and with the loop created the winch locked up to break the nymph’s fall. As it did, it dragged the clown car down, only to stop suddenly as its chassis and propeller lodged in the structure’s planks. Annetta went from terminal velocity to a dead stop in an instant with the force of that transition concentrated directly on the middle of her spine, made worse by the poor woman’s exaggerated hourglass figure. A sickening sound rang out, and Annetta limply dangled from the line.

Closing his eyes, S lowered his head in solemn respect. “Such needless tragedy. To have fought heroically for what she held dear as an underdog, only to end as a martyr.” When his eyes opened, they held cold anger, and something else–in his left iris, a red leminscate, glowing as it moved in serpentine motion. “If you pitiless monsters truly abhor this world thus, all will known of your villainy. We shall not allow you to destroy the world.”

Omori could only watch in dread as Annetta seemingly perished in Junior's attempt to catch her, a hand reaching out in vain. This- This wasn’t even intentional! Even he knew this! The grip on his weapons tightened as S spoke. Once he was done speaking, the boy swiftly went in to attack their remaining enemy. The Consul moved quickly. He stepped in, leaning forward as he extended one arm, closing the remaining distance almost immediately thanks to his comparatively immense stature. He struck Omori in the chest with just his index and middle finger together, but even that sent the boy flying backward to smack into the back of Junior’s clown car, almost dislodging the machine in the process. As the wood began to go, S put those same fingers to his brow, turned away with a mock salute, and teleported away in a flash of purple particles.

”Dang it!” Omori coughed, the wind having been knocked out of him. He stumbled back to his feet with a hand against his possibly bruised back. As their platform shrunk, he caught sight of the ladder still intact. ”Screw this, let’s move!” Not even caring if Junior was listening to him at this point, he rushed down and back to his rowboat.

”Oh no no no no no…'' Jr panicked as he reeled Annetta in before realizing something ”wait she’s not poofing I think she’s alive!'' and then carefully taking her off of the chain and resting the out cold and possibly still dying fairy in the car. He had, for entirely different reasons, the same thought as Omori: to get out of here.

The boy hit the sticks of his car, took off and started racing back to what remained of the ship, calling out for ”Kaaaameeeek'' as he got close. He could only hope she was unhurt and at least partially able to help–and that the other battles went well for everyone else.




Okay, let's take this from the top.

For the moment, whatever response Roma had after her was admittedly tuned out by Lupin. Maybe someone should've run what they could about Moonlight Tsubasa to the new girl before dragging her into this hunt. Frankly? This was begining to bore the wolf girl. This wasn't even the genuine article, why the hell are they bothering with idle talk? But, as Lupin eyed Roma's Grimore, and the darkness that gradually became hard to ignore, it seemed she took her suggestion to lay down and die another way.

"What the hell?"

The wolf in red visibly tensed up at the rewritten ending to Roma's story. The corroded shades of black and violet, she was willingly letting the Pageless corrupt her, no doubt gradually eating away at her psyche. And perhaps more, but would Lupin know? "That explains a bit." And the damn rabbit wanted everyone else to follow her example? To fall back to the same creatures that nearly killed Helena?

Celina let a dry chuckle slip out, quietly as to not draw attention to herself. This rabbit was no better than the Pageless. A mindless creature, nothing more than prey. And one she'll enjoy tearing apart.

But for now it looks like she was pulling a reversal on the group. A second barrier darkened the area, only illuminated by the subtle things. And the not so subtle blaze Olivia's friend ignited. Roma was gone, and in her place was a walking mouthpiece. She was going to attack the school. Something hidden in darkness was being made, something most foul. Celina had only fought an Apex Pageless once or twice, but even she knew how much of a pain they are to deal with.

Forget the obvious jab at Ozma, they had to get the hell out of there.

Maria and someone (one of the someones?) Lupin hadn't met yet were staying behind to fight off the Apex, Valeria was getting everyine else out, and Lupin was actually prepared to catch Stripes in her arms this time. She didn't bother joining the rest in the metalmancer's vehicle. The wolf girl sprinted off back to Marywell, passing the...argument? Between Ozma and Valeria?

Okay then. Nope. Not gonna waste time there.
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