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10 mos ago
Current Hi. I don't know what I'm doing. Are you stalking me?
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As the other two returned to their seats, so did Zeke. He clasped his hands around his cup of coffee to warm them, but it had gone cold. Listening to Alex's explanation, he took a sip; however, about halfway through, he had to put his drink down.

River water in the spring? Sticky oil and freezing cold? Zeke had to actively resist laughing. These descriptors had subjective connotations - were they supposed to imply a definitive disparity? There was no such thing as good or evil, light or dark, purity or corruption. There was only a fluctuating state of being, a superposition of extremes. Alex clearly had no idea what he was saying, and it didn't help his case that he was rambling.

"Where did you go to school?" Zeke wondered. His biscotti was almost completely dissolved. "I've never been trained formally."
Zeke listened intently to the story. Curious as to why he paused, Zeke picked apart Alex's words. They were vague, giving only the specifics of irrelevant information, such as geographic locations. He was hiding something. Which college did he attend? What kinds of odd jobs? Zeke a mental note of the cities; all he knew about the places of the world were this place and Itrora. He'd have to search for details on them later.

He was about to ask a question when Alex suddenly prepared a magic demonstration. Biting his lip, he watched closely, trying to decipher the spell. It didn't make any sense. Zeke didn't have any use for a demon-warding spell, but if he were to try one, that's not how he'd do it. What was the green sphere? He could sense that it was comprised of energy... was Alex pooling energy into his hands? He looked around the bar. What was the source? If it was Alex's own energy, he wouldn't have to gather it like that. Was he taking it from the air? There wasn't a noticeable drop in temperature. Other people? Possibly, but he didn't feel anything. Zeke hummed quietly as he tended to when he pondered strange information.

Suddenly the orb vanished and Alex appeared unwell. Backlash. Standing quickly, Zeke knew the consequences of failed magic all too well, and had the scars to prove it. Gloved hand gently on Alex's shoulder, he searched his coat for a kind of remedy. "Are you all right? I have something - a dispel - I don't know if it works on your magic, but -" he bit his lip. With runic magic, it lingers, so the best thing to do when a spell goes awry is to dispel it. It was a complicated spell, and he hated to use it on a stranger. He cursed himself for offering, but didn't show any outward signs of his internal discomfort.
Zeke looked into his cup of coffee. The biscotti bobbed at the surface, starting to dissociate into several pieces. "Oh, no, it's fine," he brushed crumbs and liquid off the card. He would have to throw it away. "The biscotti will just be a little soggy, that's all."

Putting away his cards and drawing pen to avoid further damage, he introduced himself, glancing between the two. "I'm Zeke, by the way." He appreciated that Alex spoke a bit louder, so he didn't have to dispel the circle. This place was unbearable without some kind of noise suppression.

He took a sip of his biscuit-espresso, looking toward the dracon. She seemed unbearably anxious, so he gave her a polite smile. Zeke hadn't really paid attention before, what with his all-absorbing black hole of a math textbook, but she seemed nice enough. When the waitress she'd flagged arrived at their table, he requested a napkin for his spilt coffee to save the poor dracon the embarrassment of explaining that she would no longer be ordering a meal. Why did she offer to buy an entrée for a stranger? That was a bit excessive.

He turned to Alex, nodding at his lightly charred jacket. "What do you do for a living?"
Zeke sat quietly in the Queen of Hearts Bar, an espresso in one hand, a book in the other. He was reviewing his Linear Algebra, a subject he'd learned years ago. It was useful, but unbelievably tedious, which was why he'd been avoiding using it for so long.

Now that he was once again staring at pages and pages of matrices and cluttered vector graphs, he wanted any excuse to do anything else. After forcing himself through another chapter, Zeke ordered a second coffee and a biscotti and pulled out his stack of empty cards. He was dimly aware of the commotion around him, but within his bubble of blissful sound-cancellation, it was all muted somewhat. He worked on replacing the magic circle he'd used to cast it, a bit annoyed that in order to enjoy himself he had to use one every time he came here. It only took fifteen minutes to draw, but still.

At least it was on the easier side of the spectrum when it came to magic circles. In order to cancel sound, he had to first set a boundary, and in this case he made it a radius of one meter. He liked to think of this boundary as something of an event horizon, even though that wasn't exactly true. Along the "event horizon," the spell detected all incoming sound waves and noted their respective wavelengths, amplitudes, and periods or frequencies. It was easier to measure period, but measuring frequency would save an extra step. Ignoring frequencies that humans couldn't hear, the spell would then generate an anti-wave for each relevant datum.

As he drew, Zeke watched the encounter between the android waitress and rowdy drunks. Though he couldn't hear it, it was very clear what was going on. That raised a whole lot of questions for him. For one thing, would an android even have the appropriate parts for that? If they did, firstly: why, and secondly: who would even want to do it? He didn't imagine that it would be even the least bit enjoyable, but then again, he didn't even like girls to begin with, so he had difficulty understanding the situation at all.

Rolling his eyes and focusing back on his work, Zeke took a bite of biscotti, appreciating how the bitterness of the coffee tempered the sweetness of the biscuit. Truly a pair made for each other.

His mind continued to wander as he drew, pondering various concepts and ideas. Suddenly another man sat down right next to Zeke, startling him so badly that he dropped his whole biscotti into the cup of espresso, splashing liquid onto his nearly-finished circle. He looked to his right, where the stranger sat - inside the noise-cancellation bubble.
I’m all in for discord! It’s my substitution for actual socialization, so I’m on it on the time.
Finished form! For his picture I made a quick sketch because I couldn't find anything that looks like him.

Well, he doesn't just go around ruining people's lives for fun; that is to say, he would only do so if he had a lot to gain from it, such as if that person was standing between him and a promotion. He's much more likely to turn a couple people against each other, as he can always benefit from someone else's social misfortune, but really only if those two people were probably going to clash anyway. In sum, he's a catalyst.
Can I make a character who is from Itrora? Your nation sounds really interesting.

Name: Zeke

Age: 22

Appearance: Zeke is somewhat small and severely underweight. His dark hair is a wild mess and he often wears the same thing every day: a plain shirt, pants, gloves, and a deep blue cloak. Despite having the appearance of a homeless person, Zeke is immaculate and maintains his hygiene religiously. Otherwise, he is generally unnoticeable, and his narrow eyes are a forgettable bluish gray.

Personality: Zeke is friendly and polite. Since his voice is weak and raspy, he speaks softly and rarely, but is a superb listener and will gladly help you solve your problems. He can be charismatic when he tries, but don't let that fool you. Sadistic, cunning, a manipulative bastard and compulsive liar, he will just as soon give you advice as destroy your social life. To Zeke, people are not much more than tools whom he can use to further his own goals. He is very good at hiding this, however, and it's not often that someone is severely harmed by his endeavors. He values intellect above all else and has difficulty understanding and handling his own emotions. He expresses himself most through dark humor and his love of astronomy and interior design. He also likes to sew and doodle.

Equipment: Zeke's blue cloak is his most valued possession, reaching just below his knees. The inside is embroidered with a star chart, and in its pockets he always carries a tactical flashlight fitted with a bayonet and a small telescope, alongside other basic tools.

Abilities: Zeke, unfortunately, is disappointingly normal. He's as true a human as a human can be, with no enhanced qualities of any kind.

Skills: A scientist at heart, Zeke is observant and astute. He spends a lot of time thinking and is thus not a very good fighter, but knows how to use his cloak for self defense - waving it as a distraction or catching blades with it.

History: Zeke was raised in a nuclear family, with an older brother and younger sister. Though they were loving and provided him everything he needed to pursue a successful future, he disdained them and ran away at fourteen. He lived as a criminal, stealing and beguiling his way to adulthood, though always making sure to keep his hands quite clean. For example, he would rub off his fingerprints before committing an offense so as to minimize evidence left behind. Since the ridges grow back in about a month, he was able to maintain a clean record without suspicion, among other tactics. Now, he seeks to pursue lost knowledge and discover the mysteries of the past, even if it means involving himself with a government corporation.

Other: He's completely colorblind and always wears long sleeves and gloves, no matter the weather. Also is obsessed with the number 19.
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