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Sarah Reiter

Killer Lessons and Killer Looks

Arc 2, day 1
Time: 12:00 pm
The words “Exeo” and “Dead” in the same sentence were like a punch to the gut. The young woman froze, her every feature rigid. The eyes that were so expressive before communicated cold understanding. This wasn't something that happened, it wasn't unlikely, it was hard to believe period. Now that Sarah was looking (or maybe because she was) everything screamed the death at her.

Amana.

Understanding, not in an abstract way but in a deeply personal way. It wasn't just that it was that way for everyone, it was a literal direct understanding. She knew, the god-queen truly knew her. The science behind it was insufficient to mask the great understanding contained within her. Reverence wasn't the word. The ability to go against Amana's will made absolutely zero sense.

The door latched behind Sarah before she realized she was home. It was like the ten minute walk had disappeared, the surroundings a blur. As if trying to detach the thoughts from her head, Sarah shook her head. It helped a little, and she moved to sit down at the kitchen table. An Exeo was dead. It was like a broken record, skipping, repeating the phrase over, and over, and over until the words meant nothing. A roar of white noise, a roar of the impossible, and the roar of nothing.

A knock at the door roused Sarah, and with no light in her eyes she walked to it. It swung open to reveal a human man, graying edges creeping in faster than he'd like. His prime was more than ten years ago, and his eyes spoke of a gentle life. He was wearing a full suit, appearance pristine in an artificial way. He spoke, his voice sounding equally artificial; it was fitting. ”It's time to train, come on, go get ready. Can't mope around all day. Lose the mask too, it's creepy.” Sarah nodded slowly, hardly processing the words all the while. A sarcastic clearing of the throat roused her, and she moved back into the apartment, heading for her room.

The door shut behind her quietly, trapping Sarah with her thoughts again. There isn't time anymore for focusing on the dead. She thought, but not quite believing it. She unbuttoned the skirt recklessly, throwing it onto the bed. She pulled open a drawer, collecting flexible shorts from within, and sat down to pull them on. With a hop in her step, Sarah stood and moved to the next room. The man looked up at her, and the name Alex echoed in her head.

The room shifted, but not truly. He had moved the two of them to a white walled training area. Red lines cut the room into neat squares. The sides of every square were 10 feet long, the ceiling not even visible. Lighting came from nowhere in particular and yet lit everything equally well. Her teacher stood thirty feet from her, his position not that of a fighter. The weight of the jacket was comforting for Sarah, and her confidence rose when she met her tutor's eyes. His eyes spoke of a respect earned, not through power, or through wealth. Respect earned through deeds. Respect earned through understanding.

A slow movement brought Sarah's right hand off to her side, the halberd appearing as her hand closed around it. Vis flowed with purpose through her body, tripping gates on its path. The mask was removed, the change happening from bottom to top. Hard black edges climbed her legs, the markings thinly reaching out to her fingertips from where they were visible underneath her sleeves. The contrast between her fair skin, and the black lines was striking. Every hard line on Sarah's face was accentuated by a darker design. Two of them framed her beautiful blue gem, meeting its middle at a 45 degree angle, and forming a faux tiara in the process. It broke off from that angle right above her eyebrows, framing her cheeks.

The challenge was simple, she just had to land more than a glancing blow. As soon as she did, the sparring session would be over. The first time, almost a year ago now, had to be ended because of her own exhaustion. She had slowly whittled him down over the months of training, and was now at the point where she could hit him within the hour. In her head she repeated the rules that he had instated: No Vis sense: Go at it blind, as a good enough magic user will be trying to mask their vis anyways. If they're not, it's just another advantage for you. No lethal attacks: There were a couple safeguards in place just in case someone went too hard, but it would hinder future training if either of them were dead. No using vis to increase your own stamina. The fight could last a very long time if they had access to that, and it would be a shame if either weren't fit to protect themselves in the time it took to recharge their stores. The final rule was simple: Give up when too tired to fight.

With a defensive stance Sarah approached Alex. The range that his bare fists provided was not even half of the range Sarah's halberd provided. Her right hand clasped the halberd lower than her right hand, the left meant more for guiding than providing force (though it did). For Sarah it was a truly unwieldy weapon, only manageable because of the Vis imbued into it. When she couldn't apply enough force, she could simply make it go a bit faster. When it was knocked aside by shield or parry, she could stop its momentum that much easier. When it wasn't long enough, she could give it the extra inch or so that was needed. She twisted the halberd, haft over blade in a small spin, while cautiously watching her teacher. Back to the normal position Sarah waited another step before swinging the blade forward. The haft settled on the right side of her leg, her feet bracing as soon as they landed.

Another step was enough, and Sarah thrust her halberd forward-Alex instantly struck it off to the left with his right hand, leaning forward while favoring his left side; his legs were positioned to better take the hits she was dishing out. Quickly recovering from the unexpected force, Sarah took another step forward, and swung the halberd like a pole axe. This time he took a step back, rotating so his left shoulder was farther from her than his right. Hesitantly he raised his hands, crouching down a bit. The axe barely missed, and Sarah made the effort to stop it. He moved forward now, trying to rush in to land a blow. With a burst of speed Sarah swung the halberd back, the weapon's blade coming within inches of his chest before he thrust out a palm to deflect it upward. Thinking quickly, she guided the weapon over her body with the force, before letting it go. It sailed over her shoulder, and Sarah ducked out of the way of his punch. Except he hadn't thrown a punch, he had kicked out at her chest, which was now where her head was.

The force of pulling herself down didn't do much to reduce the dizzying hit to her temple. She rolled hip-over-hip, before scrambling to stand. Holding her head with her left hand, she used vis to steady herself. Small things to correct her position, as Alex kept approaching. She raised her head in time to see a punch coming towards her, and she barely had time to duck underneath the blow, reducing the distance. The blow still scraped the top of her head, pushing her a bit off balance. Her hand became engulfed with fire as she pushed vis into her jacket, the oppressive heat filling the air. She pushed it at his stomach, as he grabbed her hair with his left hand. It was a game of chicken, and Sarah had to perform one motion while he had to do two. The fire pressed against his stomach would've burned her too if it hadn't been for her jacket protecting her.

They were back in Sarah's apartment instantly, and while Alex kept his balance, Sarah fared worse. She fell to the floor, barely catching herself with one hand which wasn't quite enough. Rolling onto her side, Sarah stared up at the ceiling, her hand still pressed against her face. With loud footfalls, Alex reached down to Sarah. He didn't offer a hand up, but instead touched her forehead. The Vis didn't reach his eyes as he healed her body. She let it happen, feeling things rebalance themselves. It was like the slow disorientating recovery of stepping off a rollercoaster.

As the world was rebalanced, Alex removed his hand and moved a step away. A large burned area on his exposed stomach was being healed quickly, fabric restitching over it. "Nice work, though you're still a bit predictable with that halberd-" the weapon appeared in his hands as he spoke, and he handed it to her with two hands, "-just keep practicing. You'll make a great fighter, given enough time. Luckily you have plenty of that, dontcha?"

Sarah nodded in agreement, her face flushed from the effort of the fight. She stood up, moving to get a glass of water, as Alex moved towards the door. ”I'm heading out then. I'll see you again, same time Wednesday.” He said, letting himself out.

”See you Wednesday.” Sarah said without looking, the tap filling a glass of water noisily. She drained it quickly, before filling it again, her breathing labored in the interim. The door closed softly, and after another beat it latched. Sarah set the glass down on the counter, before reconsidering, and beginning the process of washing it.

Finishing, she moved to her room, removing the rune jacket. She stared at the patch near the left pocket, focusing the vis in her body on the task. Slowly she crafted runes into her lower back, the act made more difficult by the thoughts of the dead Exeo at the back of her mind. It took a couple minutes, but soon flawless black lines sketched out a will on her back. In Sarah's mind it was the purest expression of the laws of physics. The will of a universal energy made legible. In this intricate, beautiful writing she had written a ward and some illusionary magic. It changed less, removing the markings across her body, and the gem from her face, but not changing the shape of her features. If one knew the particular racial differences between Prae and human, then they could make an educated guess, but even then there were humans born with Prae like facial structure, not the norm, but still within the standard deviation. The ward was the same as always, replicating a non-magical human's vis.

The rough texture of the material grazed her hand, and she drew in some of the reserves of vis within. It energized her, and gave her a bit of a rush like a child with candy. With a bit more of a pep in her step, she moved to her closet, looking at the dresses hanging there. The first couple starting from the left were more formal, with the collection growing less formal the further you traveled down the row. Her hand brushed the shoulders of each, drifting across the material, stopping every so often to take in a particular dress and frame it in her mind. After a minute she decided, removing a dress carefully from where it hung, and holding it against herself.

It draped across the bed as she set it down, before moving on to take of her clothes. She changed quickly, taking care of the mess of her clothes immediately by putting into a hamper. The undergarments were switched from white to black, and the dress came next. Without bothering to check how it looked in the mirror, Sarah moved on to her hair, brushing the tangled mess it had become into something more manageable. Makeup was next, not too much, but enough to highlight her eyes and lips. The cold tile didn't affect her too much through her socks, which she slowly switched out for leggings ending just above her knees. They wrapped up on the outside a bit more, secured with silver thigh chains.

The next thing to be draped was a shawl over her shoulders, the bottom hem an eye catching white. It mixed with purple as it went higher, the gradient evening out to a black around her neck where it was secured with a choker. Now she looked in the mirror, quietly studying her reflection. The actual dress was a mix of purple white and blue, with black tears running across it at an angle. It reminded her of space. Satisfied with the dress and shawl, she moved on to putting on her heels. Sarah wasn't particularly tall, and heels helped a lot in that regard.

Looking back on the experience in Victorius Secret, it was strange that Sarah had stayed as long as she did considering how timid she could be. Though the shopkeep was a comforting presence, he had (basically) called her Prae. In retrospect, she could have brought it up to Alex, but at the same time he had never been one for idle conversation. She stood smoothly, looking again in the mirror. She was lost in thought as she headed out of her apartment, planning on getting something to eat before the grand (re)opening.

Sarah Reiter

An Early Start

Arc 2, day 1
Time: 6:10 am to about 9:00 pm
Steam clung to the ceiling, clouding the bright light above. Sarah thought about Icarus as she turned off the shower, and grabbed the towel to dry herself off. "It's a bit of a stretch," She mused in her head, "to compare steam to Icarus." It was cold outside the shower, which prompted Sarah to hurry. The towel did it's job wonderfully, though her hair was still wet after the rest of her body was dry. She was tempted to generate hot air to dry it, just to hurry the process along, but she opted for the hairdryer instead. Besides, what would her guest think? She opened a nearby drawer, and removed it, plugging it into the outlet next to the sink. Sarah looked around idly as she dried her hair, taking in a now familiar scene. The room wasn't excessive, much like her entire apartment, but completely unlike where she had been raised. The sink wasn't marble, but a simple metal design. The floor was a cheap tile, that if treated too poorly could sustain serious water damage. These things didn't draw Sarah's eye as much as the smaller things. The small amount of dust on top of the toilet's basin, the dirt accumulating at the edges of the floor. Little annoyances that didn't occur when you had hired help.

Belatedly, Sarah realized her hair was dry. She unplugged the hairdryer and stored it away, before removing her brush from the medicine cabinet behind the mirror; she started straightening out the knots. She watched herself in the mirror, studying her Prae features. It was something her parents would want her to do, know who she was. What she was. The next step would be unthinkable to most Prae. She set down the brush, and centered herself. Draped over the empty spot on the towel rack was her jacket. She touched the sleeve gingerly, and drew a bit of energy for the catalyst. It always felt strange no matter the regularity of the action. Pushing energy through the jacket, she found the gate she was looking for. The levy broke with the smallest interference from her vis. A ward formed quickly, pushing out around her body, centered on her belly button. The next spell was cast immediately after the first, her cheekbones growing dull, her gem disappearing, and the markings on her legs fading into her fair skin. She walked back over to the mirror, studying her own body. Same as always, a beautiful mask. Being 'alone' in public as a Prae was so very hard, but with this she was just another human. The ward didn't block out all vis, but instead painted the picture of a normal human.

Her hand fumbled a bit as she reached without looking for the clothes folded on the counter beside the sink. She glanced down, and picked up the pieces one by one. Layer by layer, various underwear, skirt, tank top, and then her precious precious jacket. Admittedly Sarah felt the tiniest bit more drained than usual at the minute. She had to make use of a full body illusion spell last night because of him. Sarah opened the door slowly, pulling it into the bathroom, and entering her bedroom from the side. He was laying on the bed on the side farthest from the shower. He rolled over as she took her first step from tile to carpet, looking her up and down. Brown hair, brown eyes, and skin that spoke of foreign lands. It was the eyes that had convinced her both times, though she had played it coyly. He was shy, or had been at first. He was almost naive enough to miss the looks she had been giving and the flirting she had done.

"Damn. Twice I don't get to wake up with you beside me." He said, his voice just loud enough to be heard, “worse yet, you’re already dressed.” Sarah had the slight suspicion he had been practicing that sentence, though her face colored despite herself.

”It’s so much easier to talk when my lips have been loosened by those silly drinks.” She thought, moving gracefully around the bed towards the door on the other side of the room. She kept her eyes on his. Attempting to seem cool as she ignored her own red cheeks. She sat down next to him on the bed, and moved her lips to the side of his head. ”You better be ready to leave by 8:00.” She said, the tone of her voice making it clear she was only half teasing. The carpet caressed her feet as she walked out of the open bedroom door, straight to the kitchen.

The creaking of the bed springs alerted Sarah to his presence. As she opened the fridge he leaned his head over the door, looking down at her. ”Your room is rather sparsely decorated. Judging by that, and the fact that I’ve only seen you at the club twice, I’m guessing you’re new in town. That, or a recovering chronic shut-in.” His voice hadn’t changed, still quiet. Just quiet enough that you had to strain to hear it, but not low enough that you would actually misunderstand. It wasn’t how he talked at the club, he had to shout to be heard there. It was a nice contrast, and piqued her interest more than a little.

”Not new in-town, kind of a shut-in, and kind of offended” She said, smiling momentarily, before poorly hiding it. She removed the butter and eggs, and used her foot to close the fridge door. He stood straight up before his perch was removed from under him. He leaned against the counter next to the stove, expecting this part of the routine. Sarah obliged, setting the eggs and butter next to the stove, and removing a skillet from a nearby cupboard.

He glanced down at the stove, as she turned it on and placed some butter on it. ”Do I get to learn your name this time? Or is the third time the charm?” He moved away from the counter, circling around her and giving her an inquisitive look. ”He’s definitely thinking of these in advance.” Sarah thought, refraining from answering his question. She cracked an egg carefully, dropping it in the skillet to cook, while acting very focused. He responded by throwing his hands into the air, and sighing melodramatically; he walked back to the bedroom. Out of the corner of her eye Sarah saw him walk around the bed, before entering the restroom.

”How did I not notice he was naked?” She wondered idly.




The food on Sarah’s plate was half gone before he had finished showering and drying off. He walked out, and she could hear him putting his clothes on from the various quiet rustling noises. He walked out while buttoning up his pants, the wrinkles telling a story of being left on the floor all night.

His unbuttoned white dress shirt helped to reaffirm that narrative. She spoke up as their eyes met, a smile trying to make an appearance and showing at the edges of her lips. ”Sorry about not getting you breakfast this time. Stuff to be done, and in the rush I forgot to get more eggs.” She gestured at the empty carton peeking out of the almost full trashcan.

He glanced over at it, before shrugging, and sitting down at the opposite side of the small wooden dining table. ”I’m not accustomed to eating this early anyways, so don’t worry about it. Besides I ate plenty last-” He started grinning, cutting himself off from saying it; Sarah looked away, trying and failing to hide her face. ”No but seriously, I understand. I’m going to head out now. Have a nice day, no name.” Sarah recovered while he spoke, nodding in agreement. Sarah was soon alone with her thoughts, as he made his way out of the apartment.

She meditated on the night as she ate. Every so often she glanced up at the clock, slightly worried she’d be late. At around 7:30 she got up, and walked over to a locked door. She set her hand on the handle, pushing vis into it. The rune within responded, unlocking itself and Sarah entered the room quickly. There was a workbench centered on the wall opposite the door, with various drawings scattered around its surface. The workbench had a bulletin board on top of it, leaning on the wall behind it. There, detailed very extensively was a drawing of her coat. It had taken six months to diagram the thing out, and more than two years to actually start the enchanting process. She had tested it out on a couple electric circuit simulators online, making sure it returned true values and false values when needed. Even a single mistake could’ve set her back months, more if found late enough.

Sarah’s attention detail and commitment to the project made sure it was perfect the first time. The left side of the room had various pedestals, meant purely to separate the runes lying there visually. The system, when given a supply of vis, would generate runes in designated places, according to template runes she made personally. It wasn’t that complicated in execution, but more a mental puzzle. Trying to figure out how to get the expected result without making the entire act of undertaking the process useless.

The efforts had paid off, however, and now she was barely indistinguishable from human even when it came to casting magic. She could throw a fireball or ice spear like the best of them, real physical things that hurt-or so she was told. She was still working at better understanding how humans appeared when casting magic, as the process seemed so alien. Her best disguise was still a human with no magical tendencies, though that was also one of the safest disguises in her experience.

Her halberd lay in the corner, its position making it out to be an unused relic. Honestly the act of keeping it on hand was a pain, but safety was important. She could fight well without it, but even better with it. She lay her hand on the large handle, lifting it casually before spinning it so the blade was facing upward. Again she focused, the vis targeting specific runes throughout her coat. The weapon disappeared into a pocket dimension, and her stores of vis suffered for it. :No clubbing tonight, I need to keep myself topped off on vis,” She noted idly, moving out of her workshop, and letting the door close behind her. Its lock clicked into place as Sarah picked up her small black bag, and opened the front door.




It was overcast, and the oppressive sameness of it was something that still bothered Sarah. ”It couldn’t be a bright cheerful day, no, it has to look like a funeral is about to start every damn day” She thought, annoyed. The walk to class was consistently uneventful, which was nice. No one kept their eyes on her for long enough to make her feel uncomfortable, it felt like there was a bigger bubble outside the literal bubble that was the ward. She was just another human schoolgirl, she wasn’t special or better than anyone.

It was 8:56 when she arrived on campus, and three minutes later she arrived at her first class of the day. It was her only early class in the week, though she did have a night class later in the day. The advertisement for said class was very vague, but she went out on a limb. With her luck it’d turn out be about philosophy of magic, or worse religions and magic. God she hated that class; the textbook was very poorly written. It wasn’t just dry, though it’d make better kindling than reading, it was also poorly sourced. Bias shone through really heavily, and it felt more like a sermon than an educational text.

The seat she took was one of the empty ones near the front. The class she was currently attending was a History of the races III which she tested into. Truthfully Sarah didn’t have too high a hopes for it, but the textbook was actually pretty interesting. She settled in, listening attentively to the professor and taking extensive notes the entire time. She could already tell that she wouldn’t have to study for the test. The act of note taking guaranteed that, as she knew she’d remember the material better after writing it down.
Sarah Reiter


Theme I
~"Better prepared than dead-Wait does prepared rhyme with dead?"~

Protean sounds interesting, but I'm voting for octodad Inkscape.
Ira Riese:
PHQ - Class is Definitely (not) in Session

@BCTheEntity@Lugubrious@ProPro@yoshua171@Old Amsterdam

Ira listened to the others planning silently and considered what she should do. It would be best to go with Alessa and Lillian, not just because she liked being near Lillian and the others but because if they discussed tactics they would discuss powers and Ira could get a better feel for the two of them. Also she felt that if she couldn't contribute in the same way the others could, then she could make up for it by helping with tactics and memorizing helpful information. Plus she could make sure her device worked properly, after all tinker devices had a bad habit of not working properly if left along for too long. "I'll come along too, I want to see it in action. By the way, I can't nullify the entire facility, though that might do more harm for us than good anyways. I still have my nullification device, the suitcase thingy. We can experiment with that and Mar- I mean Elliot's power to make it less cumbersome" It. She needed to think of a name for her enhancement device, as well as the nullifying-thing; for convenience at the very least.
@Sickle-cell I'm a bit interested. I literally can't get enough Worm, with Worm 2 starting February (probably).
Ira Riese:
PHQ - Class is Definitely (not) in Session

@BCTheEntity@Lugubrious@ProPro@yoshua171@Old Amsterdam

Decoy's explanation raised more questions than it answered, for Ira at least. She held her tongue restrained herself from asking a million questions, and it showed on her face this time; a deep breath cleared the curious expression, though the fact that she checked to make sure no one saw was telling. At the mention of Herme's, Ira started. She had been collecting all the information she could, and the fact that he had been involved in illicit activities hadn't come up. Everyone had been surprisingly tight lipped, and if she didn't know better, she would've assumed he had been told to stay away from the Wards.Though, with this new information, that option became a lot more likely. He could easily have some sort of Master power, or even be under the influence of one. Corrupting the next generation of heroes was probably high on the 'avoid at all costs' list.

The information he had provided was invaluable though, apparently, and the role Hermes had in the raid he, Inkscape, and Protean had preformed clarified with this context. She had to assume he had played a similar role in that context, considering how major a blow to the Bratva it was purported to be. The new information he had provided had shown a Community rally was taking place, and that the Wards could use that to investigate an active location when it came to illegal goods.

Lillian's chatter brought Ira out of her head, but she was already two sentences in. It was strategy planning, and Ira was kind of embarrassed that she had zoned out during that of all things. She waited a beat before contributing to make sure she didn't interrupt anyone else. ”I can help you scout with my goggles on hand to assess any threats. I also recently finished a device, and I think this would be a great time to field test it."

As she spoke she removed a bracelet from her pocket. It was a bit thicker than a normal bracelet, with a dark blue color and a raised button that had a power symbol on it. "I already got it approved by Decoy, but I made a device to help increase Evely-I mean Tulpa. To help increase Tulpa's effectiveness. It lets her more easily assist with scouting distant areas, by allowing her projection to instantly move to my location. I think it also increases her scouting range, but I'm not quite sure about that. Sometimes my power feels like more art than science." Ira read the room as best she could, her eyes lingering on Decoy and Tulpa for a bit longer than the others.
@Eragon Thank you for expressing interest. I can answer any questions that come up, if Eklispe doesn't sneak in and do so first~
Zach Kozel:
SpFarce's Apartment's Alley

@Banana@Spiffy@eklispe

The woman's shrill screams echoed in Zach's head as he watched the villain on screen. Pay-per-view, of a sort. Troll started talking, and Zach remembered her power fully in the midst of her speaking. The words left her lips, the words that had been frustrating Zach for months and he was on his feet. It was over, and as she finished her last sentence Zach picked up the TV. He threw it to the ground, shattering it with the impact.

A breath grated through grit teeth as Judah's calm washed over him. It wasn't working as well as it normally did, the words kept clawing to the surface. I could've saved them It was irrational because she hadn't been there. She had no foresight, she could only say what hurt, regardless of honesty. It made no sense, and it still left Zach raw and bleeding. Troll was a hammer not a scalpel.

He turned to his (three?) companions. It took two attempts for him to steady his voice, the words sounding strained and the pitch off. ”She won't kill the hostage." His expression betrayed doubt. There was no regret, just unease. Judah would feel the pain, but it was a different sort from when the words were first spoken. It was less visceral, more a bruise than a stab. I don't want to know what happens when she actually twists the knife He thought morbidly, turning away slightly so his compatriots couldn't fully see his face.
@SantosGabriel77 that's alright, I can understand if you didn't notice the rule about character sheet posting. It's just kind of frustrating when it happens cause some people do it when they're way too confident in their sheet. I'm looking forward to your completed character sheet~
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