Hidden 2 mos ago Post by MULTI_MEDIA_MAN


Member Seen 15 hrs ago

Geralt of Rivia

Edge of the Blue- Seaward Bay

Lvl 7 (37/70) -> Lvl 7 (38/70)

Word Count: 482 words

Geralt's inexperience with flying vessels in all forms meant he was unable to understand just exactly what Sakura's idea really entailed. He knew storms went high, and he knew this ship they were in could go high. He had no idea how high either of those things went, however, as that information was for most purposes irrelevant to him. Sure, some monsters might be able to fly above a storm if they had powerful enough wings, but he'd never heard much on such a thing, and it was a fool's errand to go hunting in the middle of a storm anyway.

If it was feasible, it would probably be a good idea, Geralt could agree. He simply had no frame of reference for whether it could be feasible, and thus held his tongue as the Koopa Family discussed the idea and its merits. Bowser's own interjection left Geralt with a raised eyebrow. He knew the boss was a man of eccentric taste, but building a castle in the middle of the ocean on a tiny island that was constantly harassed by storms-

Skellige. Bowser was talking about Skellige, though with extra storms. "Actually, boss, that almost sounds like Skellige. Storms aren't quite as bad, but its a nation founded on an archipelago surrounding a larger main island. The castle is on a smaller island adjacent to the larger one, and the only real way to it is by crossing the bridge. Of course, a flying vessel like this could just ignore that, but it's as you say, a highly defensible location for a castle."

When they started receiving reports from Rika's scouts, Geralt frowned. Another battle on the ocean was the last thing they needed. At least, as Bowser said, they were ignoring the Seekers and just fighting each other. They'd be able to cruise right by and-

And Bowser was jumping out the door as soon as he heard the little one was a girl. What a dastardly villain his boss was, truly.

Sighing, Geralt stood awkwardly and followed him to the open door, jumping out just after Rika. His impact with the water wasn't too harsh, as Junior thankfully kept them low. He was probably predicting somebody jumping out at some point, since it had happened twice already.

Moments after he hit the water, he summoned the Ordnance Platform below him, rising back out of the ocean on top of the massive disk on top of the Platform. "Let's see what you can do." He muttered, pointing all five guns at the large monster. He wasn't sure if the four smaller guns would have the range to hit it, but they reloaded faster than the main cannon, and wouldn't leave him high and dry if his target turned and charged.

Closing his fist once he was confident at his aim, Geralt ordered the guns to fire with a yell.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Zoey Boey
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Zoey Boey ~I'm Stone Free, do what I please~

Member Seen 7 hrs ago

Level 5: 21/50
Location: Atomos --> The Bottomless Sea Surface
Word Count: 361
Points Gained: 1
New EXP Balance--- Level 5 : 22/50

Sakura was pleased that Junior and Kamek liked her idea. "Well. Y'know. Just the experience that comes with being a world warrior. Lots of experience with economy class flights." She casually inspected her clipped finger nails, like she was really cool or something. Karin Kanzuki did it all the time.

Sakura didn't have the best view from the window, so she listened intently as Rika explained what was going on out there. Sitting back, she rubbed her chin thoughtfully. "A kaiju battle, huh? Well, I've watched enough Godzilla to know when to let them fight." She sat back in her chair.

"Besides, they're in the middle of the ocean. Probably just duking it out. A street fight is a street fight, fair and square." She nodded, closing her eyes and crossing her arms. Rika explained one of the monsters were a little girl, and this made the street fighter reconsider. "Well..."

The weight of the Atomos shifted, like a middle-aged, slightly overweight dad groaning as he clambered out of an SUV. Peeking one eye open, Sakura realised the two biggest dudes in the room were suddenly not there anymore.

"That's what the feels like, huh? Well, you reap what you sow. See you later, everyone. I'll be back. Just gotta sort out this fight." Sakura dove off after Bowser and Geralt. She landed gracefully on the water, not dunking herself this time.

Geralt immediately fired a massive cannon at the big tentactle purple thing. "Um." She tapped her cheek. Hopefully that wasn't a mistake.

Sakura skated forward, arms swinging. As she neared the giant monster attacking the island, she pointed a finger at it. "Consider that a really accurate and painful warning shot! You better leave, because there's no bullying allowed when the Seekers are around!" Then she remembered the monster was Galeemified, so it probably wasn't going to leave. Not until it's friend hearted. And especially not after getting blasted by a giant cannon. This would have be settled the old fashioned way.

"Oh, dang it. Uh. Hadoken!" She charged up some fireballs and began loosing them the monsters way.
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Hidden 2 mos ago 1 mo ago Post by Dawnrider
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Dawnrider Demigod

Member Seen 11 hrs ago

Level: 7 (19 -> 34 -> 37/70)
Location: Edge of the Blue - Luma Pools -> Bottomless Sea
Word Count: 1264 (+3 EXP)

Hat: Default

In spite of the sounds of rescue, the following confrontation, and general chatter and activity, Hat Kid managed to peacefully nod off on the palm-shaded patch of sand she lazily occupied. Picking up zero hits on her Compass Badge told her there was nothing that currently demanded her immediate attention, and so decided she’d rather pay it to nothing other than her afforded relaxation time to rest her head. It wasn’t long until she was roused by food smells unfamiliar to her, but in their own way enticing nonetheless. She sat up and tilted her hat out of her eyes to observe the culinary activity that brought it about, then popped up onto her feet and made her way over to join the others around the fire. A feast was in order, it seemed, courtesy of Link, Cadet, the (rest of) the girls, and a new guy who happened to befriend a nearby chimp. Whatever they were serving, she wouldn’t be saying no to a free meal. (It IS free this time, right?) Shameless thoughts of repeat freeloading aside, with the contents prepared and set, she set in with the others to help herself at the proverbial ring of the dinner bell (one that Link could probably hear for some reason).

She liked the fish, but she wouldn’t say she loved it. Certainly, it was pleasant for what it was, as light a flavor as it had against a semi-crunchy, flakey, succulent texture, but something about it she hadn’t the palate to place gave off an underlying impression of “We worked with what we had.” Still, not bad overall… definitely better than what the Mafia ‘of Cooks’ could manage, which admittedly wasn’t saying much considering their food resided on an astonishingly low qualitative end of putting any partakers into an early grave. Strangely, nothing struck her as anatomically bizarre about the fish, being no more weird or alien to her than any other creature she had likely encountered (and/or tasted) in her unrecounted space travels.

This thing they called ’froot’ was another thing entirely. Her off-hand knowledge was of its exclusive use in decorative table arrangements in ornate bowls or horn-shaped baskets, the same way hamburgers were clearly furniture made by/for earthlings to sit on (a previously held myth dispelled for her back at the Hammerhead branch of Grillby’s). She was unaware until now that it also came in edible form, and was apparently enjoyable at that, going by the reactions of others. The only question that remained for her was which one to try first.

At any rate, she opted for cooked and raw bites of each for a proper sample size and reference. The hot pink one in the green-striped, less than edible shell proved better left raw, if good in its own right. Cooking it seemed to render out some of the juiciness and reduced the texture somewhat, even if it ended up enhancing the decadently sweet flavor overall. The uninitiated child’s second eager bite closer to the rind was met with a pause of displeasure at the unintended crunching sensation that hadn’t happened with the first. Put off by this, she reflexively spat out the black she had caught a mouthful of and reexamined the partially-eaten melon wedge in her hand to notice plenty more still within it. She wondered then if filtering them out as you went was part of the experience, for meticulously removing them seemed unduly laborious for the otherwise pleasurable act of consumption. She tried again, this time expecting it, sucking down each flavorful bite of watermelon and projectile spitting the seeds out in any direction--enough to quickly develop a feel for and start having fun with it. Like that, she went from working around her food to playing with it like the child she was, messy smile and all.

The golden one with the ‘prickly-but-not-really’ skin was great either way. A little less sweet, but just enough with a balanced tang--somehow moreso when grilled. To boot, when paired with a bite of fish, it made that better too! Preferable cooked, but excellent regardless. Definitely the highlight of the feast. The ‘creamy boomerangs’ were a toss-up as to whether they were better cooked or raw, but were hard not to love either way. If anything was for certain, especially after experimenting with it, they were certainly better by themselves than paired with anything else they were serving. Thankfully, they would have no shortage of them for the road.

Soon enough their recess came to an end. They re-split the party between both vessels--Hat Kid assuming a roaming post in the Atomos’ ballista bay once more--and set off downstream. The passing scenery of lush, red flora and glistening waters brought a peaceful smile to her face. Not that she didn’t normally smile by default already, but it made her feel slightly more at ease while it lasted. It didn’t take long for the colors to run with gloom and decay the closer they got to the Sea until there was naught else to behold, marking a complete turn in the child’s attitude and expression, changing at pace with the scenic transition.

For all the comfort it was worth, the abyssal black waters may as well have been a bottomless void of open air, no more welcoming than it was by feeling and appearances alone, coupled with an endlessly-spanning storm that could throw them into it with a wrong turn in any direction. Thalassophobia wasn’t quite the word. She had actually been in the Deep Sea once before--or a rift-borne imitation of it at least (which too was seemingly bottomless)--but at least it was stable, even when it was un-stable… and she couldn’t drown or anything else in it. What she found here was strikingly unnerving by comparison… to anything she had experienced up to this point. Only Vanessa had ever made her nervous like this once before.

Perhaps the most critical distinction between this and the dimensional dream reflection of the ocean and its depths as she had experienced it before was both the inherent and readily apparent realization that they weren’t alone, and they didn’t yet know what all awaited them. Sharks seemed an appropriate tone-setting opener, of which she could see more beneath the water’s practically opaque surface, and on which some seemed to place inordinate focus. What worried her more was the atmosphere itself and the foreboding promise of doubtlessly greater dangers that lie beyond; things that were bigger and much more threatening than a mere school or carnivorous fish.

Lo, she was shortly proven to be right, for they soon had back row seats to a duel of arguably mythological (or at least cinematic) caliber between two sea monsters. Bowser had the right idea… at first: Just leave them alone to fight each other and move on. Then, for no apparent reason--probably some arbitrary affront to his pride or whatever--he decided to ignore his own advisement and jumped into the water anyway, seemingly with every intention now of getting involved. Geralt, with his new upgrade, followed in after, followed by Sakura. She guessed they wouldn’t be leaving this one alone after all, but that still put her at a loss for what she, specifically, would do. "Hey!" she called tothe remaining Koopa family, joining them on the control deck and looked to them expectantly for some kind of action plan, hoping they might have a better idea, and waiting to hear it if so, before compulsively, recklessly devising and enacting one of her own on the spot.
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Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Gentlemanvaultboy
Avatar of Gentlemanvaultboy


Member Seen 20 min ago

Hyrule Warriors

Word Count: 1301

Level 5 - (34/50) + 3

Level 9 - (23/90) + 1



Location: The Edge of Blue ~ Luma Pools--->The Bottomless Sea

Back at camp, around the fire

Link's turned his attention away from Ace Cadet as he finished describing the Wyverians's for them, his ears perking up as Geralt put two and two together and got one hundred. He had gotten so worked up in his description he had shared just a little to much, and after he had made Glenn promise too. He had been half joking when he'd said that, but that still left half that was totally serious.

He looked around the group. Linkle wasn't here. None of them were from his world, at least from the description they had given. There was vanishingly little chance of his words inspiring the doom of Hyrule here. No harm to cause in answering.

He took a deep breath. "Not as long as Zora, that's for sure. I met one woman that was at least one hundred years old, but she had the ware of that age on her. I'm a special case." One of the few memories he possessed reared up in his mind, brining with it vivid feelings that it kept fresh just for him. Exhaustion, pain, desperation, uncertainty. He pressed on. "One hundred years ago, a calamity washed over Hyrule. We had prepared for it as best we could, but it didn't matter. The defenses it didn't tear through it turned against us, and while trying to defend against it I was gravely wounded. Essentially dead. To save my life my Princess's attendants sealed me in an ancient chamber where I could recover." He thumped himself solemnly on the chest. "It worked. In exchange for my life I lost one hundred years, most of my strength, and all of my memories. I've only ever gotten a few of them back, so I'm glad little Sidon was one of them." He sighed. "A Blazermate of our own sure would have been useful back then."

As he finished, a little depressed himself, he became aware of how his story could have just maybe brought down the mood. He tried to shake off his depression, lifted back up, and clapped his hands. "But at least I managed to wake up just in time to finish the job. Once I was back in action the Calamity didn't know what hit it. I even managed to save the Princess in the end. Just like destiny said." He laughed, but that couldn't hide the tinge of bitterness in that last thing he said.

The Bottomless Sea

Link nodded as they began to set off into the choppy water, accepting that the girls knew what they were doing. After all, if you couldn't trust in your actual ship was there anything you could?

In more unfortunate news it looked like only one of their new passengers decided to take his offer of life-preserving spirits. Despite his obvious trepidation Mirage took Link's warning seriously. The other one practically threatened to jump in among the animals, a thought that made Link grip the railing where he was standing all the tighter in case he needed to dive in and save the man. Cadet did his best to talk him out of it, but it was enough of a distraction that Link didn't notice the particular spirit the Mirage selected. His attention was only drawn back by the tale-tell glow of a spirit merger. He raised up his arm to shield his eyes from the light, only lowering it when it had faded to find a slightly diminished looking Mirage.

Link wasn't the only one that noticed that either. "Don't worry, Princess Peach can pull it out after we're back to more solid ground and you'll be right back to normal." He advised, watching the man get used to his new body and accessories. He was a little put off by how easily the man did his jumps. Why was he the only one that ended up flat on his face when he tried to walk too fast?

His attention was pulled elsewhere before he had a chance to dwell on that. As they approached some pillars of rock jutting out of a sea hat was, confusingly, supposed to be bottomless it was confirmed to him that not fighting the sharks had definitely been the right call. A giant, flabby looking monster rose out of the depths that looked like it was capable of smashing Shippy with just one of its tentacles. Luckily for them it didn't pay their little ship any notice, instead embroiled with a territorial dispute with a smaller monster that made its home up on the rocks. It was comforting to know that not every ocean horror they came across was on the same side. The big one had strength, no doubt, but the small one seemed to be on the winning end of their struggle judging by how it was tearing at the flesh of the big monster. He took up his slate and zoomed in to watch them. The big one was easy to get a picture of, but the small one was too little and too far away. That was good. So long as nothing brought their attention toward the Seeker's Link was content to let them fight it out.

The others didn't seem to take the monsters nearly as seriously as he did, Ms. Fortune pointing out the big monsters chest and sending herself and Mirage into a giggling fit. He couldn't help but giggle like a five year old with them for a bit. It kind of reminded him of one of the Great Fairies, and he laughter was silenced by a mental image of the thing lifting him up and leaning in for a kiss. He shuttered.

He lowered his slate and turned back to the deck when he heard Mirage and Blazermate talking. Blazermate was fiddling with something, shoving it into one of her zombies mouth and sent it overboard. The thing splashed into the water and started swimming away from them, but soon attracted the attention of the sharks. They tore into the undead monster. That was a good idea, he thought. A sacrifice to learn the real capabilities of these fish that were hounding them. He certainly wouldn't want to be in the water with them, seeing them rip at that-

Then the zombie exploded, sending a wave of water and fish ash pouring over him and The Cadet. Link spit a little salty water out of his mouth, sighed, and smashed all the spirits in his free hand. He dropped the loot to the deck as he held out his hand and summoned his Soldiers Broad Sword into it in preparation. At the very least Blazermate seemed aware of what she had probably done, immediately launching into preparation for a fight. She seemed more worried abut the two monsters they could see, though. Link was worried about the ones that they couldn't who might have heard that explosion and taken notice of that ship at sail across their territory. He watched the water intently, waiting for something to poke its head out of the dark depths.

All he got was another mouthful of water as Bowser, then Rika, then Sakura, then Geralt all splashed into the water next to the ship. The first three started toward the big monster, ready to pick a side in fight that had nothing to do with them. He got splashed again as Geralt came bursting out of the water atop...

He decided that, yes, they could probably handle what was coming so long as they had that giant gun platform that could blow a ship out of the water with a single shot. If you couldn't be careful you could at least go into battle with massively overwhelming firepower. "Get ready everybody!" He called out. "I'll bet something heard all that."


Merge Rate: 30%

Location: The Frozen Highlands - Snowdin ~ Morshu's Shop

"Oh, you mean like a quest?" Linkle asked Sal in regards to his offer. That was a bargain, considering. "Sure, I was doing those all day back in Lumbridge. I found a bunch of food, fought a bunch of different monsters, dueled somebody, I'm pretty good at quests." She said, puffing out her chest in pride. "So, what can the Hero of Hyrule do for you?"
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Lugubrious
Avatar of Lugubrious

Lugubrious Makes the big edits

Member Seen 24 min ago

In the Court of The Cheesy Queen

Fox, Midna, Red, Big Band, Alex Mercer
Word Count: 6606 (+7 EXP)

While following along with Midna and failing to notice anywhere that sold the frozen treats the pair was looking for, not surprising in a desert in all fairness, there was the additional problem of not having money. A problem that thankfully Red could rectify fairly easily. After all she still had to report to the Cowlipha about her mission's success. “Before we get scouting the shops you want to come with to visit the royal palace with me? Still gotta get my pay from the queen, might help us get our situation sorted, maybe ask if she’s got another request for us.” Maybe having Midna, who was apparently a princess, would help Red a little with her horrible lack of etiquette. Even if she didn’t feel like coming Red would start making her way to the palace.

”That. Would make everything a lot easier,” Midna admitted ”Good call.”

”How’d you wind up getting in with the queen to get this job in the first place?” she then asked, falling in line with Red as the mercenary headed to meet up with her hirer ”because that sounds like a very useful contact. I imagine she, or someone in her court, would know about what’s going on in the area we’re heading for too.”

Red laughed a little thinking of how she got the current job. Of course she wasn’t one for following official procedures or anything of that sort. “I just showed up and started asking around basically. Turns out the Cowlipha was looking for someone to figure out that trade route so I got lucky.” After a bit of walking they shortly found themselves at the palace entrance, to find Fox waiting there ahead of them. Wordlessly he waved the others over and proceeded inward. After they paused to allow a huge man in a trench coat stomp by, the Seekers moved between the unusually tall guards and into the palace.

Before them stretched a gigantic hallway. On either side rose fine white columns and arches, beyond which planters brimming with lush vegetation ran the entire corridor’s length. A veritable avenue of maroon tiles separated by stripes of green and orange led the gaggle of visitors onward under the ever-watchful, silent gaze of the golden guardsmen, past a trickle of disappointed-looking petitioners headed the other way. With heavy footfalls of the big, hat-wearing stranger ahead of them setting a constant beat, the group made for the end of the hall where they could see some towering edifice of scarlet cloth and gold. As they grew, closer, however, they could become increasingly aware that it wasn’t a throne they approached, but a four-post bed of staggering proportions, wrapped in opulent drapery. With that revelation, it followed that the thing within the bed’s confines was not some immense construction or heaping collection of something-or-others, but the Cowlipha herself.

The bell-shaped stranger whistled. In a deep, buttery smooth voice with a metallic timbre he remarked, “Mercy, mercy, mercy…so this is her Moojesty, eh? Color me impressed.” Without missing a beat he stomped in the direction of a long, elevated platform with attached staircases rose up on one side of the bed, presumably for addressing its occupant. Since ultimately nothing could be seen from the ground, it seemed reasonable to follow suit. At the base of the stairs, an agreeable-looking attendant waited with a polite, patient expression. “I am terribly sorry,” he was telling both the big man and the much more discreet fellow he arrived with. “Her Bovinity is not disposed toward meeting with anyone without suitable tribute. An offering of cheese the size of a child is necessary to so much as rouse her from her royal slumber.”

The big man turned to consort with his friend in low tones, giving the Seekers a good look at him for the first time. Almost from head to toe he was covered by a tan trench coat, with a fur collar and a number of odd, almost instrumental bronze augmentations. Dark metal legs held him up, and a porkpie hat lay over a face with glassy eyes and some kind of respiratory device. Under normal circumstances Big Band would have towered above just about anyone, but with the Queen in the picture his own size was less impressive. He moved off to the side, allowing the Seekers to move up.

In light of an apparent prerequisite, Fox turned to his comrades in attendance. Specifically Red, hoping, but not entirely expecting, that she might have come prepared. “I’m guessing neither of you would happen to have that on hand?” An inkling of annoyance with the circumstance seeped through in his voice, the very notion striking him as absurd; a potentially circuitous exercise in formalities they frankly didn’t have time for.

”No... We didn’t” Midna replied, finding the idea absurd but trying to roll with the situation. ”Don’t suppose you have any on hand we can trade for stuffed away in the pantry?” she asked the attendant.

“Our poor cheesemakers are working day and night to satiate Her Moojesty’s craving,” the attendant sighed. “I very much doubt they would have any to spare, but if you wait for the next delivery, you may present the offering for a chance to speak with her.” He glanced at a small crowd gathered by the stairs, some having brought their own chairs. “That said, these other supplicants have the same plan.”

With his mouth covered by his headwear, the big man mostly showed his disapproval with his eyebrows. “Ain’t that a shame. I don’t suppose she’d be too happy if I belted out some west end blues, either.”

The royal aide shook his head. “If you mean awaken her by force, I would expect a foul mood, rather unlikely to give anyone an ear.”

Midna held her face in her hands and groaned. That was two for two for the local royalty not being useful. It was not a good look. How these places were still ticking along with such absent royalty was a mystery to her. Actual no. no it wasn't. ”Someone must be running the place while she’s, ah, resting. A parliament, advisors, her heirs, a general…” she said, mostly to the group, before asking the attendant ”Is there someone who’s running the day to day of royal affairs we could speak too instead? We have news about Sweet Canyon they’ll likely be interested in.”

He nodded. “Oh, yes. Our vizier is graciously managing things in Her Bovinity’s place. He is a shrewd and capable fellow, not at all deserving of the unsavory reputation many affix to him, as he’s kept Al Mamoon in excellent condition, to say the least. If you’ve resolved the matter with the trade route, you should find his clerk, who manages royal commissions. If you have other matters to bring before him, though he is a busy man, I’m sure he would take the time to meet.” Pointing toward the right, he indicated a door illuminated by braziers on one side of the hallway. “You may find the court thataway.” He bowed to the petitioners in farewell. “I am Abull, and though I am but her Moojesty’s humble aide, I am at your service should you need anything else of me.”

While he didn’t have the surest grasp on matters of the crown, and little taste for politics in general, Fox couldn’t shake the feeling that something was inherently wrong with the way the chain of command worked in the Court. An ‘appointment by tribute’ system, with a material requirement that was presently in short supply, that left the apparent head of governance indefinitely indisposed while someone else took over to run the place in their stead, effectively installing them as a provisional de facto ruler? All the more reason to pay him a visit, then. They already needed to speak with him anyway.

”Thank you Abull” she gave the man an appreciative nod, echoed by Fox, even if it would have been nice if he’d started with that rather than having to be asked. Maybe it was an ad hoc filtration system to make sure only the people who really wanted answers could get them. Not a particularly honest way of doing things, but they’d gotten through it if that was the case.

”Looks like we’re just in the wrong spot. Let’s go meet this clerk first and then figure out if its worth bothering the man himself” she said to the team, before glancing over at the man who had threatened the queen with a rude awakening ”not sure if that helps you though mr...?”

The detective noticed the Twilight Princess for the first time, in her entirety, and what little face of his could be seen made him seem interested. It was a moment before he replied. “‘Scuse me little lady, seems I put myself in a silent way. They call me Big Band, and if I figure anyone’s in the know, it ain’t Big Chief up there. Guess we’ll be headin’ your way.”

”Nice to meet you. I’m Midna. Hopefully we all have better luck with her staff.” the princes replied as they headed in the direction they had been pointed.

Red was just about sick of all these incompetent rulers in this stupid place. Even though the Manager back home was a coward who never got involved, at least he did his damn job as well as he could. Most of the time. If it wasn’t for Midna being the exception to the rule she’d be completely done with royalty.

She was also really thankful Midna was here. If it wasn’t for that she’d probably end up getting kicked out of the palace. Or arrested. “That makes sense. I did talk to one of her servants the first time rather than the queen herself.” Red admitted, realizing she hadn’t really thought of it before they made it to her Moojesty’s presence. “I like your thinking though, brass man. I was tempted to try something similar but with gunshots. Probably would’ve ended badly.”

Band raised an eyebrow, but nothing came of it. The mercenary didn’t take much time to greet the two suspicious men, if the tall brass one could even be called a ‘man,’ that had followed them here and led the way to the vizier’s clerk, with Big Band taking up the rear. The door on the right of the main hall opened into a high, multilevel chamber of countless books and papers, all illuminated by the sun streaming down from the dome high above. Everywhere the newcomers looked, little helpers worked at their desks or ran documents around. Red made her way up to the large desk parked in the middle. “Hey bud. I’m here to collect my reward, got that trade route up and running again for ya guys.”

Seated comfortably behind her desk, the skeletal clerk looked up from filing her nails as the newcomers arrived, bobbing the great plume of red hair atop her head Her slouch and the stack of newspapers nearby contributed to an impression of particular disinterest, and when Red delivered her no-frills report, her sigh faintly rattled her ribs. “Yea, yea, yea,” she deadpanned in a strong New York accent. She shifted her weight to the other elbow so she could reach the nearby filing cabinet. Without as much of a moment’s hesitation she slid open the third drawer from the top and started rifling through its contents. “That wuzza...Pahnasse deseht trade, uh? We got crime, shahtages, ‘n infrastrucha problems out the wazoo, but it’s candy that gets people movin’, uh. Figyas.”

The clerks assessment of city management quite conflicted with the royal aide’s appraisal of the vizier’s managerial ability. “Sabotage” stood out to Fox specifically, considering what he had come here for, and “problematic infrastructure” was probably in some way relevant to that as well. They might all be connected. Red was here to collect on a trade route resolution after all. This all only added more notches to Fox’s level of suspicion.

She produced and laid down the contract, noting Red’s signature on the document as well as the listed reward. “Sign the second line unda the first. Mahks it complete, assumes all liability in case it tuhns outcha lied a’somethin’.” She counted the gold pieces she put into the sack for Red’s reward, then double checked the signature before forking it over. “Two hundred fifty gee pee. Pleazha doin’ business ‘n all that. Next!”

“Not my concern. I just do the job I get paid to do.” Red said as she happily signed to finish this job. Hoping that this would indicate that her time in Al Mamoon was coming to a close. This entire desert was getting on her nerves. She grabbed the sack of gold and inspected before being satisfied and turning away. “If ya got any more jobs that need done around here you let me know. I’ll do anything for the right price.” She looked at Midna and held up the gold triumphantly. “This should help fund our little mountain trip.”

The secretary looked unamused. “Look sweetie, ya want moa wahk, take it up with a job boahd. They’re all ova the joint, except right hea.” She lifted a bony hand and waved behind Red. “Next!”

”Well that was efficient. And that’s definitely more of a currency than the paper we have. Nice work Red.” Midna commented after taking a peek at the gold, before moving out of the way of Big Band so he could try his luck. She wasn't expecting he’d have much but who knew. What she was interested in was if there was anything that might be do-able on their way up the mountain, or which might get them a power boost. With that in mind she hovered over to the board to see what was on it. It featured a number of contract fliers neatly tacked to the backing, along with a general bulletin.

“Actually, we’re not done.” Fox stepped past Red and approached the desk, addressing the clerk. “We’ve other matters for the throne, but since the queen’s asleep, we request an audience with her second-in-command. Urgently,” Fox emphasized calmly, but not without a layer of sharpness in his tone.

There was a second of silence during which the secretary just stared at him. Then her jaws twisted into a smirk. “Top floah, right by the staihs,” she replied.

“Thanks.” Fox answered with a nod before walking off in the given direction. He scanned the job board in passing then shook away any thought of taking work from it. He couldn’t afford the distraction, and frankly, the jobs listed were beneath his pay grade. It behooved him to remember, though, that he didn’t take or refuse jobs for the money. He then looked to Midna and Red expectantly while they browsed the board. “Coming?” he asked, nodding them over. He expected going as a company would make them look more convincing in their ‘official business’, but he would be attending the Vizier regardless. It was just a question of if he’d do it with or without them.

When Fox headed off Big Band sidled up, but he was hardly surprised when his tentative question received a vehement rebuff. "Whaddya think I am, a secyuhity camera? Ask the vizea." After that, he couldn't do much but follow on Fox's footsteps.

Midna made a quick note of the jobs on the board, considering their party contained a number of thieves (more than she knew in fact) the idea of using a thief to catch a thief had immediately come to mind, and then headed after Fox, mostly to see what was going to go down.

Red also took a look at the board for any possibilities. The strange thief and the mimic seemed pretty up her alley but now wasn’t the time. Fox was calling them over and it seemed he wanted to speak to the Vizier. Which worked for her cause she had some info that she wanted as well. Thankfully he was more vulpine than lupine so she had no problems with him for now, so she followed after him and Midna silently. With Big Band seeming to follow too.

Mercer had, for the last couple of minutes, elected to remain silent as he observed the other seekers. They were no less strange than anything else he’d seen thus far, although some of their appearances he couldn’t help but note as odd. In the end however, he simply followed after Band as he made his way into another one of the palace’s many rooms, standing next to the trench coat clad detective silently with his arms crossed.

Just as the secretary said, the spiral staircase that provided access to the court’s top floor led straight to a large, thick door. The prominent plaque it bore overhead simply read ‘Vizier’. A knock elicited a call in a firm, if somewhat raspy male voice. “Come in!”

When the door swung open, it revealed a fine if passably ominous office, decorated in a muted style that managed to be rich but not overbearing or lavish. Purple rugs with yellow fringe and approximately zigzag patterns covered the floor, and matching curtains hung in abundance. A handful of bronze instruments lay here or there, either upon the low, cushion-surrounded table near the door or free-standing thanks to greater size. At the far end of the room, the bright yellow lamps illuminated the vizier in all his glory, a middle-aged man with wild dark brown hair, both slender and muscular at once, heavily ornamented and possessed of elaborate, showy garb. A single streak of white occupied the very center of his pointy beard. A book lay upon the wooden desk before him, in the middle of a vast pile of professional miscellany from inkwells to ledgers to a framed photograph of himself with a younger man in similar attire. The name plate before him held just one word: Validar. He looked up at the new arrivals, noting how many there were, and set down his feather. “Good morning,” he greeted them in an even tone. “May I help you?”

Fox began sizing the darkly man up from the moment he pushed his way into the room, by his trappings and bearing. The room itself was about what one would expect for a right-hand attendant of royalty. From the man himself he could assume little by appearances, beyond the fact that he bore vague stylistic resemblance to the ‘darker’ figures he had met in the past from other worlds, like Ganondorf. He supposed Midna might sooner know and act accordingly. He could assume slightly more, however, from the portrait on his desk of him and a loosely familiar fellow Smash Brother, in which the latter looked decidedly uncomfortable. Had he been there with them to explain why, that might have left less to question, but he would just have to see where this took them.

“We hope so,” he answered on his continued approach. “We’d have asked the Cowlipha, but she’s out, apparently.” Without acting to insinuate anything, Fox casually alluded to the matriarch's indisposition that brought them before the Vizier. Fox’s unshifting gaze affixed to him with scrutinous intent.

“Indeed…” Validar expressed his concern. “Her Moojesty’s affliction has rendered her unable to perform the duties of a sovereign.”

Fox nodded nonchalantly at the statement and continued. “I’ll get to it. We’re here on a mission. Thought we might need your help with that, and by the sound of things, maybe you could use ours.” Fox preempted the subject of mutual compensation in the likely event it came up in their discussion.

The vizier looked interested. He placed his elbows on the desk before him and tented his fingers. “There is much I can offer, and there is much in this city that must be done. How can we help one another?”

“The armored train in the yard. We thought we might take it off your hands. We’ve already got someone working to get it running, but we thought we’d come ask for it while we’re at it… and if the tracks reach the mountain.” Fox left a second of space in his speech for the Vizier to ponder the possibility, or for alternatives, should they prove necessary. “But then we found out about Her Majesty,” as he mistitled her, “came to collect her bounty,” he gestured to Red as an implicit commendation for a job well done taking one less problem off their hands, “and found out you’re still having problems. Problems that we might be able to take care of. ‘Crime and sabotage’ were the word,” he more or less quoted the secretary, leaving out ‘infrastructure’, but leaving it implied. “Any chance they’re related?” His question pertained simultaneously to the train he came to ask about, the dormant sovereign he came to ask in the first place, the job Red had just completed for them, and anything else of potential relevance to their discussed trade of service for favor. He was confident they could and would be happy to solve these problems in one move (or as few as possible) for them, but they would do well to have some lead on it first, if they could gather one.

Validar leaned forward, putting his clasped hands in front of his mouth as he thought. “Hm. Well, that was a lot in one breath, so allow me to address one matter at a time. You mentioned the train…” He narrowed his eyes, making a snap decision about how much to share. “It is indeed a waste of space that could be put to better use for hauling cargo. I would be glad to see it go, but assigning a mechanic already was rather presumptuous. If its weaponry is restored, particularly that needlessly large cannon...I’m sure you understand the sort of concern that presents for Al Mamoon.” Inside his head, the gears turned quickly, processing the possibilities. “There are many possibilities to work around this problem, but all require one thing: trust. Which may tie into your second point.”

He spread his hands, palms tilted upward. “These are important times for the city. Running one is not easy. Running the region’s cultural and economic forerunner is rather difficult.” He seemed just a little annoyed by the phrasing of ‘still having problems.’ “So yes, there are some...issues, around town. For all their diversity, they boil down to a singular fact: demand outweighs supply. I made the assurance of adequate food and water to the people my number-one priority, so construction and especially security are the main thorns in our side. Material shortages mean things get built more slowly and less soundly than they should, and incompletion invites disorder. There are not enough guards to cover the cracks, since the Ruin Sentinels are rather primitive. My Grimleal try to fill the gaps, but the populace seldom offers them their cooperation.” He gave a snakelike smile. “The price I’ve paid for not working to improve my image.”

Much of what the Vizier went over came down to a legitimate management and logistics problem rather than a “shoot at whatever’s causing trouble” problem. In other words, there were issues Fox may be ill-qualified to attend to personally, but he felt certain they had fit hands and resources they could pull from Alcamoth. Prospectively, their extended service to Al Mamoon would grant them an additional foothold there. His eyes shifted over to Midna with a look of “You getting this?” on the assumption that she would perhaps be thinking the same (or similar), and make note between them to phone home after they left.

The princess nodded. She had indeed found the man’s appearance to be suspicious, but she was hoping that the queen’s attendant’s comment about him not deserving the ‘unsavory reputation’ he had was legitimate. His concerns and priorities certainly sounded well meaning enough, and if they were going to be working around town for a bit they could get a better understanding of what, if anything, he had done to earn his reputation other than, well, fashion sense.

Straightening up, Validar continued. “But yes, despite all I have done for this city, it is not what I would call stable. We need help to stem the bleeding. Maybe you’ve already pieced together what I have in mind. The tracks do lead to the mountain, terminating at Tostarena town, a place of tourism. If you want to take the Railway Gun there, we’ll need to put our faith in one another, despite the odds. Aid Al Mamoon in our time of need, and the train is yours, provided you agree to the use of a failsafe.”

With the prospect of Alcamoth’s aid in mind, Fox almost thought about reassuring him that they had zero intentions of helping a town one minute only to turn their biggest guns on it the next, especially while their own people were stationed within it. Little did Validar know that it wasn’t entirely a matter of necessity for fair requital that stopped them either, for they had enough at home to just as easily hurt them as it could help them. If they wanted to simply take the train, and do with it as they damn well please, they could. No, their show was run by (mostly) honorable people who were more interested in restoring the world than blowing it away when and where it inconvenienced them (excepting the Dead Zone for good reason). Fox thought the better of showing their hand in one light or the other, however, until they had a better read of the terms. Returning his full attention to the Vizier, he instead asked simply, “What’d you have in mind?”

“The Bounties posted to the castle job boards are some of our highest-prority problems,” Validar told him. “That said, since you all are clearly not from around here, I can share something else. At the moment our greatest issue is not the showboating thief, or con artists, or slimes in the sewers. Pockets of organized crime have taken root in Al Mamoon, hurting the livelihoods of our citizens. Rather annoyingly, they call themselves the Resistance, and many clothe their naked villainy with pronouncements of ‘ending corruption’ and ‘restoring the city’, all while ransacking and fighting as they please. And if you don’t agree, you’re among the corrupt, and deserving of whatever may befall you...preposterous.”

The vizier looked grim, pain evident in his features as he glanced at the picture on his desk. “But transparent egoism can be compelling. Even my own son has cast his lot in with them…” His face hardened. “But they cannot undo what has already been done. This threat to Al Mamoon must end. We have identified their hideouts, but do not have the manpower to strike both at once. That is where you would come in. If you can do this, without bringing any harm to my son...” Once again Validar tented his fingers. “I will know we are on the same side. The side of a brighter tomorrow.”

Mercer leaned towards Band, gaze trained on the vizier, mostly because he was getting tired of staring at the opulently decorated office around them.

”This talk of infrastructure and bounties is great and all,” he muttered. ”But we still have our own problems to solve.”

Big Band gave a curt nod and took a halfstep forward, indicating his intention to pipe up as soon as the others wrapped up their business.

If she was being entirely honest with herself here, Red wasn’t entirely sure if she believed half of the things coming out of the vizier’s mouth. If she was judging based on appearance alone he looked just so incredibly evil. But appearances can be deceiving, and he sounded fairly on the level and like he actually cared for this city and even his own son so who knows. It’s not like she ever questioned people’s intentions when taking a job before and he wasn’t about to start now. ”Now you’re speaking my language,” the mercenary said as she strided up next to Fox after standing behind him this whole time. After all suppression like this was much more her speed as far as jobs went. ”As long as the others agree that the payment is sufficient for the job I’d like to hear as much info as you got on this group and their hideout, as well as any other intel or equipment you got.” She looked over to both Midna and Fox to make sure they were both onboard with this mission.

Validar waved his hand. “That is a matter the Grimleal will be able to help you with. Their headquarters is the temple just outside the palace, on the right. If that’s everything, I’m afraid I am a rather busy man...”

Looking between his two comrades, Fox’s already blankly serious expression hardened as well at the mention of family. It didn’t tell him much; mostly just raised more questions really, but it was good to know nonetheless. “We’ll look into it; see what we can do... and I promise no harm will come to your son. No more than necessary.” He offered his assurances sympathetically, but truthfully. In a sense it was entirely true, that he had more than purely practical reasons to care for his well-being. Though, he felt no need to explain to him why: that he was acquainted with his son, little did he know, and that inevitable harm was necessary in securing his freedom and safety. Validar didn’t look happy, but it looked like he understood. With their mutual acknowledgement, Fox took his leave. As many issues were left unaddressed, he felt he had all he needed to go on for the time being.

“Just one more thing, Mister Magic.” Big Band took a step forward. “Since you’re Head of intelligence ‘round here, I was hopin’ you might’ve seen a little girl named Peacock.” A tiny metal arm slid out from a hole in his coat, its padded pincer holding a photograph of a girl in a hat who didn’t look quite right. “Ring any bells?”

After a moment the vizier nodded. “Yes, I believe so. She and a boy named Crow were in town recently. They took a Bounty to investigate a marauding force of robots. I’m afraid I haven’t seen them since.”

”I met Crow and saw her in Sweet Canyon. They didn't come here with us, so they should still be around there” Midna chipped in.

“That so? Good to hear she’s in one piece, though I’m not surprised.” Band didn’t seem bothered. “I almost feel bad for those robots. Kid’s got a mischievous streak five hundred miles high.” He retracted the photo, then tipped his hat. If Peacock invited him here and was still waltzing around, she’d be back to meet him before too long. “That’s me taken care of. Be good.” Leaving Mercer to pose his own question, he plodded off.

Mercer, sparing Band the briefest of glances as he left the room, stepped up to the vizier’s desk.

”Speaking of intelligence, I also happen to be looking for someone.”

There was a short pause.

”Maybe you can help.”

Validar blinked, waiting out the second dramatic pause with a less-than-amused expression. “That would depend on you telling me about this person, I suppose.”

”It’s my sister, Dana. She’s got short brown spiked hair and silver blue eyes. Can swear like a sailor when she wants to and isn’t one to back down from a fight. You see or hear of anyone like that around?”

It didn’t take long for the vizier to shake his head. “This Dana must be keeping a lower profile than your acquaintance’s friend. I have not heard of this person, but you can ask my secretary to draft a missing persons poster for the job boards. Now, if you all will excuse me...”

Mercer didn’t reply. He merely nodded and made his way out of the room, stopping by the secretary’s office as suggested to draft a poster for the boards, before making his way back through the palace in an attempt to find Band. Deal was a deal after all, and he intended to uphold his end of the bargain.

The Seekers left the office and retraced their earlier steps through the court, back into the wide open space and relative privacy of the main hall. With Band and Mercer headed the same way, a little discretion was called for.

“Thoughts, Princess?” Fox asked in a hushed tone for Midna’s impression of both the Vizier and the situation as they proceeded outward. Even if he could later get a more informed opinion as he had hoped to, he preferred at least to know if they were on like wavelengths.

“I’m missing the context of the specifics of this train you’ve found,” she and Red had headed out before Tora made his discovery, “so keep that in mind.

“Tora’s on it now,” he clarified. “You can go see for yourself; maybe fill him in while you’re at it. I’ll let him worry about the ‘specifics’.”

The princess held her chin contemplatively for a moment and then said her piece “At a bare minimum, the... let’s call them the above board jobs seem like they’re beneficial to the people no matter what and we’ll get money we can use to generously fund our trip up the mountain and possibly let us restock if we come back. If we can get the train out of just that, and if the ‘tracks’ the trains use run up north to the cites up there, then all the better.“

Fox agreed to some extent, nodding along thoughtfully to let her know that. He considered the possibility that they brought enough manpower with them to complete said tasks within the day, knowing it would require splitting, or if they would necessarily have to do all of them. Part of this would likely hinge on the continued cooperation of the Phantom Thieves’ and their willingness to take up such tasks. Failing that, introducing them to ‘the Resistance’ might prove an enticing proposition for them...

“As for the below/off board job, well, obvious dubious morality of the situation aside“ she hoped she didn't have to explain what she meant by that “That might be getting too deep into local politics. We start down that road and we’ll have best make sure we get to the end of it lest we keep tripping over loose ends“ and she did not want to get bogged down in a protracted war with a potentially heroic rebel group, both for ethical and practical reasons.

“Whatever we decide to do, I’d like to be quick about it,” he iterated aloud his intention against lingering in one place for too long. That was to say he concurred on some level in regards to brevity. “If nothing else, we may already have an ally on the inside.”

As the two finished, Big Band allowed his path to take him closer to the group. “‘Scuse me there, I don’t mean to intrude. It seems like you folks might be lookin’ into that special job our friend Sidewinder mentioned. He made it sound like a fine mess, what with all the family drama, mixed messages, ‘n political intrigue.” The detective gave a wry laugh. “All my favorite things. Who knows who’s in the right? But when right goes wrong, Big Band’s on the case. If the word of law falls, pick it up and hold it higher!” From his coat a giant pneumatic arm reached out, a single finger raised from its brass knuckles. “In other words, one truth prevails. And I intend to find it, with or without acknowledgement.”

He was right. There was, in this World, one universal truth, but with the telling red glint in his glassy eyes, he would never find it, no matter where he looked; even if he looked to the sky. If the brass-made detective had any ideas about following them to look for it, one could certainly say he was on the right track. Glancing at Midna and Red for some clue or vote of confidence in the titanic stranger that approached them before telling him as much himself.

“Well, if you’re looking our way for it, I can tell you you’re looking in the right direction. Can’t promise you’ll like it though,” he ended on a word of disclaimer, issued tonally without the intent to threaten.

Band looked unfazed. “Well, you needn’t.”

”I might as well join you,” Mercer said, striding over. ”Got a deal to keep after all. Besides, I doubt I’ll find Dana by sitting around doing nothing all day.”

It seemed they were gaining no shortage of interest in such a short time. Fox wasn’t entirely sure how to feel about that. He had previously advocated himself for taking help where they could find it, but recognized a need for established trust in those who joined their cause. It wasn’t so easy as explaining to them along the way that they had an ultimate goal in common. Looking between the strangers and his comrades, he concluded it would be best to feel this out as they went.

“We should head back. Rally the others. Fill them in on what we’ve learned and go from there,” he told Red and Midna (who nodded in agreement) before addressing the other two. “If you two care to help, there’s a spot for you. You’re welcome to come with us.” With that, the Seekers were already making their first steps (or equivalent) back toward the station to reconvene with the others. From the provisional invitation to join them he omitted the “just don’t cross us or else” clause, expecting that they would have enough sense about them to make it go without saying. He hadn’t thus far needed to make that point with anyone they had recruited, nor been given reason to doubt or suspect them. He would like, and expect, that it stay that way.

“Music to my ears.” Band agreed, and followed along as the troop made its way from the palace.
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Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by ModeGone
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ModeGone Legitimate Satanspawn

Member Seen 6 days ago

Level 1 [9/10] (Word Count: 886 +2)
Location: Edge Of The Blue
Addressed: Bowser @DracoLunaris, Mirage @Potemking, Blazermate @Archmage MC
Mentioned: Sakura @Zoey Boey, Geralt @MULTI_MEDIA_MAN, Link @Gentlemanvaultboy, Hat Kid @Dawnrider

From the Party
It took Mr. L a bit for the fact that Miss Whomever That Generic Lady Was is actually Miss Pink and Princessy. Outfit would be one thing but she really looks nothing like what she did after the Whoa Zone. "Sheesh, so these 'spirit' things are like some sort of weird powerup that sticks? Ugh, no thanks. I'm great the way I am and I don't need anything like that."

"Hmm, no Red Jumpman lingering around... Good. I hate his ugly mug. You and Pinky are bad enough but at least you two don't make me want to hurl." It's weird the way Mario's face makes him feel dizzy. Like he was hurting his Brobot instead of some stranger. Pah, whatever. Speaking of... "Not sure on what I'd need right now but I could use some stuff to rebuild Brobot's beacon. That is if Brobot can get the signal from this dumb place..." Possible that Brobot got completely wrecked when Castle Bleck probably got demolished but if there is any chance... Mr. L has to try. The junior minions and 'Miss' Nastasia and the Count himself can all go hang for turning their backs on him. But Brobot is his.

The thief gives Bowser an odd look at the talk about getting stranded on the moon. Getting possessed, sure, probably happened more than a few times to the guy but by Red Stache?! "You know, considering how many times you get possessed maybe you should look into some charm or barrier against that crap. I bet you coins to cookies that with your luck you'll get taken over by a simple generic boo next time."


Something inside of Mr. L is screaming that this is a bad idea. That he really shouldn't be doing this. Even more louder than any time he's done something even slightly 'wrong' so clearly that annoying voice is just some lingering conscience... even if it was apparently right not to trust anyone at Castle Bleck. Yeah, you heard me, you stupid little cowardly thing. Shouldn't had trusted them if they were so quick to forget me.

But did that tall (er... now not-so-tall) mamaluke just diss Brobot? "Big words coming from someone who needs a freaky possession-based powerup just to swim. If I had my metal bro here then I wouldn't have to stick around all this stupid water or put up with a mook like yourself." Yeah, the sudden and actual changes in that sportsball guy's appearance is making L less and less likely to pick up one of those Spirit things. That thing's disturbing!

The tall giant was asking some rather stupid questions of Little Boy Blue. What, Mister Big White and Overly Muscular is surprised that someone older than a century could look so young? Puh-lease, you could have someone lingering for a thousand years in a chest and look no worse for the wear!

Meanwhile, Peach is yammering something about caution and one of the junior minions asks him something him diving in. He has no idea who this chick is, but the cadet minion's little punny tone does not go unnoticed. "How else would you fight sealife without lasers or shells? Wait for it to get on some dry dry dock or wash up on a beach? Peh, you have to get in. ... wait what do you mean those things will turn into spirits?"


wait what the hell did the robot just do? Who gave the robot control over rotten zombies?! Or bombs!? ... Okay the bombs are a nice touch, admittedly, and expected for a robot to have. "What, you run out of lasers?" he pitches the medabot's way.

...did someone just get all confused over the idea of a bottomless pit? But those things are everywhere! Why would you be so surprised that such a thing exists? Honesty, he's surrounded by idiots... again. Great. "And you! Bottomless pits are completely average! You want something weird, its all this 'perma-powerup' crap. And why is an exposed core weird? There's all kinds of planets and planetoids that got entire chunks missing." Mr. L is certain he's never been to another planet (setting aside the whole dimensional stuff) but he's definitely got the impression he's seen telescope images.

No, Mr L is definitely not delaying jumping in because of the giant eels. No this has nothing to do with a terrifying impression of something bigger than even 'Moobs' over there. He's just... trying to remember if he has any spare Items. (And what is it with bubbily friendly 'heroes' and fireballs?! First its Mario, now its this Sakura chick...)

... his definite intention to join the fight is mentally derailed by the fact that there is an actual child on the ship. Not another tiny Koopa or some shapeshifting menace (possibly? Mimi is that you??) but an actual tiny child whose hat is bigger than they are. "Oh Stars and stones... There's a kid on the ship. WHY is there a kid on the ship?!" Right. Kid on the ship. Giant monsters in the water. Why does he give a shit? No idea but he scrambles around for loose hunks of metal and gadgets that no one will miss. Mr. L is hastily assembling a fragmentation grenade. "Hey! Robo chick! You got any welding tools?"
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Poppi and Big Band

Level 8 Poppi (62/80) and Level 1 Big Band (10/10)
Location: Sandswept Sky - Al Mamoon
Primrose's @Yankee, Fox's @Dawnrider, Sectonia's @Archmage MC Midna's @DracoLunaris, Yoshitsune's @Rockin Strings, Red’s @TheDemonHound, Laharl’s @Dark Cloud
Word Count: 1053

When it came to provisions, the bazaar did not disappoint in terms of variety. Sandwiches, wraps, skewers, curries, stews, local delicacies, exotic fare for the adventurous, raw ingredients...this marketplace had it all. Sectonia found a fruit cart within seconds, it seemed like, and it offered a wealth of apricots, figs, mandarins, pomegranates, loquats, persimmons, and grapes. Poppi’s olfactory sensors drew her to a veritable fountain of fascinating smells, Rhon Ron’s Eatery. Her companions, however, shied away from the fluffy-tailed vendor’s glazed worms and lizard steaks, so the artificial blade bowed to their judgement and the group moved on. Any place where sweets could be found drew in Panther like a magnet, and while food suitable for travel constituted their chief priority, she nevertheless managed to talk her way into getting a single portion of baklava, and she relished every morsel of the nut-dotted, honey-sweetened pastry.

The discovery of an adventure-friendly stand helped get the shoppers back on track. Called ‘Mamoon On the Go’ and run by a bespectacled cat, it catered specifically to travelers with its emphasis on portability and convenience. As such it offered crunchy, nutty snack bars, dried meats, some canned goods, and moisture-free sandwiches wrapped in clear, impermeable film, among other things. Such fare would be good no matter where the Seekers’ journey took them, as Poppi gladly pointed out, so expenditure here was well-warranted. All told the supplies diminished Primrose’s remaining funds down to just about fifty pieces, but in exchange the shoppers had accumulated enough provisions to feed the crew for a good while, if properly rationed. Even if it did only last a few days, Poppi reasoned, they would be out of the inhospitable desert and into parts more plentiful well before their supply bottomed out.

As they left the bazaar, Poppi considered the potential difficulty of finding the others, but her worries soon proved to be for naught. Right at the marketplace’s main entrance the shoppers and the petitioners collided, bringing the whole band back together with a couple new faces to boot. Polite as ever, Poppi offered her hand to Big Band to shake. “Poppi happy to meet you!”

Band thought for a quick moment, decided that a small arm wouldn’t cut it, and parted his coat with a major arm to take Poppi’s hand in his own. “The pleasure’s all mine, stardust.”

After seeing his augmentation’s Poppi’s eyes shone. “Oh! You also artificial? You very, very cool!”

“Ahem!” Band coughed, a little taken by surprise. “Well thank you, but not all of me. Still got a little body and soul rollin’ round in here someplace.”

“Oh, am sorry,” Poppi apologized. “Poppi all artificial, so not know that much about people. People come in all shapes and sizes, each with own story, all so very interesting. Poppi still learning.”

Big Band smiled at her from beneath his mouthpiece, his geniality shown instead through his eyes. “So what? I’d say you’re quite the sophisticated lady already.”

Everyone got a few moments to chat and exchange information. Poppi and the other ladies who’d braved the mercantile extravaganza called the Bazaar reported a great deal of success, on the whole. Though they couldn’t offer much profit to line the team’s pockets, they’d come by plentiful supplies and a few choice pieces of equipment to boot. Meanwhile, those who visited Queen Lowlah, uneventful as that turned out to be, and then met with Vizier Validar came away with some money, some ways to make more money, and a few tidbits of information more valuable still. Of course, none expected Red to share the reward of her own commission. Yoshitsune’s visit to the foundry had been a fruitful one as well, and with a little time he would be fully armed once more. The other Phantom Thieves had yet to reappear, but Panther assured everyone that they would be fine.

Given everything the group learned, and the increase in civilians unhappy about a large group clogging the market entrance, the Seekers soon made for the next logical step in their journey. Deliberation on whether or not to actually undertake the vizier’s Elite Bounty could come after they possessed more information about it. To that end they made their way to the right of the Cowlipha’s palace, where the temple of Validar’s order resided. Decorated similarly to the vizier’s office, it maintained a dark interior and did not disguise its aura of menace. The acolytes watched the newcomers wordlessly as they passed, headed for the great, vaulted main chamber that dominated the place. There they found a vast design of colorful concentric circles on the floor, centered around an altar beneath a great, draconian idol, illuminated by both violet candles and a central skylight. In that glow they found the elites of the Grimleal, waiting for them.

“Well well well then, here you are,” the man in the center said, his voice bearing a dramatic and flowery flair. With long purple hair, a braided beard, and an elaborate robe outfitted with a stole that seemed to corkscrew as it defied gravity, the showy man was nothing if not an eye-catching figure. He took in the Seekers before him. “This looks promising. I, Azwel, am looking forward to this!”

The man to his right, in contrast, was a half-rotted ghoul strewn with almost a many artifacts as bandages. “We understand that you may be interested in helping suppress the criminal faction, you see. For too long has this rogue element lingered, gnawing at the edges and tearing at the seams. Thus, the vizier has elected to act. To that end, we of the Grimleal are at your service. My name is Kan-Ra.”

“We stand ready to strike down the pretenders who bleat of vague justice, and to expose their self-deceptions of righteousness,” announced the third captain. This rabbit-eared woman stood taller -and wider- than either of her compatriots, with long blue hair and dark armor atop a slit dress, and carried a longbow even taller than she. “I am Ciella, and though I despair the waste of time, all of us can provide more information if need be. Once your forces are ready, we can divide them three ways and begin the operation.”

“I would be honored to take the stage with you!” Azwel said as he bowed, inviting the newcomers closer.

Al Mamoon - Palatial Gallery

@Zoey Boey

“That’s definitely the place.” Mona hopped back down from the wrought-iron fence into the shady ally, trying to temper his excitement with seriousness. “Same garish golden blocks, blue windows, everything. It’s Madarame’s Palace, one hundred percent.”

Crouched against the wall, Joker was in the perfect spot to pat the cat’s head in appreciation. “Good find, buddy. I take it we’re all unanimous on what comes next?”

“Uh, yeah!” Skull laughed. “We’ll bust in there, beat up whoever we find, and bam! Yusuke’s back on the team! Man, findin’ everyone’s actually goin’ way better than I thought!” He wiped his nose, still grinning. “Think he’ll make me a bowl of ramen once we save ‘im?”

Rolling his enormous eyes, Mona crossed his paws. “We’ll cross that bridge later. Right now we’ve got to think about heist. There’s a chance that in this world it’s a real gallery, so we can’t just shoot up whoever we see in there.”

Joker furrowed his eyebrows. “What do you mean, ‘real gallery’? It’s all shadows and distortion in the end.”

“I mean, yeah,” Mona conceded. “But what I mean is, it’s real to the city. So if we trash the place, we could bring down a whole lotta trouble on our heads.” He shrugged, donning a smile of confidence. “We’ll just have to do it stealth mode, true Phantom Thief style! And since it’s daytime, we’ll infiltrate in our normal attire…well, you guys will, anyway. I don’t have a choice.”

Mirroring his expression, the thieves’ leader nodded. “Sounds good. Necronomicon, track us and keep an eye out for Panther, would you? If you see her looking for us before we’re done, give her the scoop.”

The achingly familiar voice of his friend, edged with a Persona’s ethereal resonance, reached him through his connection to Necronomicon. “Got it, boss. I’ll be your eye in the sky, just like Futaba would.”

“Then its go time,” Joker declared. Electing to keep their civilian appearances for a little longer, the Phantom Thieves sallied forth from their alleyway and toward the gallery gates in a practiced casual manner. On the way they passed a woman with red hair who leaned against the gallery’s perimeter wall, and Joker’s gaze lingered on her for a moment longer than it otherwise would. She seemed on edge, suspicious for trying to look a little too inconspicuous, and though she tried to hide it her wandering gaze told him she was looking for someone. An undercover guard, perhaps? A free agent? Or just a fidgety civilian, maybe? He didn’t have the time to find out. Instead the Thieves continued onward toward the gate, joined en route by a painting enthusiast and a old man in a dirty lab coat whose proximity made Joker instantly wary in a way that the other stranger did not. Something about this doctor-looking guy was off--of that he was certain. He couldn’t put his finger on it, but he made a note to keep a close eye on this guy. As the group passed through the gate the guards flipped the electronic sign to ‘at capacity’, and the gate slid closed.

Ms Fortune

Level 4 Nadia (17/40)
Location: Bottomless Sea
Blazermate's @Archmage MC, Bowser's @DracoLunaris, Ace Cadet's @Yankee, Hat Kid's @Dawnrider, Sakura's @Zoey Boey, Frog's @Dark Cloud, Mirage’s @Potemking, Mr. L’s @ModeGone
Word Count: 1288

Given the size and clear viciousness of the monsters involved Nadia assumed it to be a foregone conclusion that her team would be staying well away, but not everyone followed her thinking, and the jovial mood that Mirage’s reaction to her joke put her in quickly took a turn. Out of all the fighters present the healer chose violence first, liberating the group’s newest recruit of a weapon apparently capable of taking out an entire shiver of sharks. “Hey uh, what are you doing?” she asked as she watched Blazermate jam the device into one of her abominations. The medabot’s plan dawned on her quickly enough after that, although her intention behind it remained a mystery. Did Blazermate actually intend to create a frenzy far enough from the ship to be a decoy to keep the sea creatures’ attention? Or did she just feel like blowing up sharks? Either way, it was too late to stop it now.

The Arc Star grenade went off much sooner -and closer- than she expected, lighting up a whole patch of ocean with rippling electricity, close enough to tickle Shippy’s hull and make Nadia’s hackles rise. Half-dissolved chunks of overgrown fish bounced off the vessel around her as she cried, “Nyagh! What was that fuse, three seconds!? If you don’t know how something works, don’t use it!” How did Mirage end up thinking this was a good idea and not her, the one who couldn’t die? When she rounded on Blazermate, however, the machine had already called forth her Striker to build a turret. As its construction began Nadia recognized it from the Dead Zone. “Wait, isn’t that the one that shoots automatically? Who said we’re picking a fight with those things!?” The level of impetuousness on display was beginning to alarm her. Was Blazermate one of those healers with a sadistic streak like Valentine? She turned to Ace, who was front and center on the ship’s bow alongside her, with an incredulous look on her face as if to ask are we just going to let this happen?

Unfortunately, they were. In quick succession the low-flying Atomos produced Bowser, then Rika, then Geralt, then Sakura and even Bella too, all to splash down into the stormy sea. In the Witcher’s case he plunged straight in without even a hint of buoyancy and made Nadia wince, wondering what the Harbor Demon had given him if not aquatic mobility. Her worries found their answer when he rose a moment later atop a miniature (but still quite large) replica of the Harbor Demon’s weapons platform. Rika, Bella, and Sakura flew forward across the waves while Bowser followed at a pace that would have been comical if not for the circumstances, and Geralt didn’t move at all. Link switched to battle mode, crushing the leftover spirits and rallying everyone for the imminent battle.

Shaking her head, the feral resigned herself to another battle, and when she snuck a glance at Peach she found a thoroughly defeated-looking princess staring back at her. “Eheh...guess we’re doin’ this. Good thing curiosity can’t kill me.” The Witcher let loose without delay, filling the big monsters’ corpulence with holes, and when his main gun fired a crater the size of a sedan blew open in its gut. It screamed, and the smaller horror went on the offensive, targeting the eye her enemy’s head-tentacles had been protecting. In the span of one moment, the turf war had taken a decisive turn. And since Sakura couldn’t extend Tentalus an olive branch, she extended it a Hadoken instead, with Bella following her example. “Ouch...” Almost feeling bad for it, Nadia leaned onto the railing again both to watch things unfold and see if she needed to help, only to realize with a shock that thanks to all the blood in the water things had suddenly gotten a lot livelier out there.

Schools of ugly, snaggletoothed fish leaped in and out of the waves, edging ever closer, and a particularly hideous bunch of sharks attacked with renewed vigor. No way these were just opportunistic animals; they were out for blood. “We’ve got company! No time to be a paci-fished!” The alert sent the Seekers scrambling into battle mode as they tried to pull together a defense against the aquatic assault.

Nadia’s first instinct was to run for one of the cannon emplacements, but before she could seat herself she remembered that now featured a few of her own. Nadia grabbed hold of the railing with her claws and started to fire. The tri-cannons on her rigging arms blazed in sequence to chunk the mofish one at a time. By the time the ravenous school got close enough to leap for the boat itself, only a handful remained, and Nadia met their flashing fangs with raking claws. “Cross my heart!” A jumping x-cut took out the first handful, while a followup cross-cut from her rigging blades diced up the rest. She put her elation on hold as two more schools breached the moody waters, and with her jaw set Nadia opened fire once more.

Up ahead, Tentalus was hitting its breaking point. Gushing a gooey, purple fluid from dozens of nasty bitemarks and bullet holes, it turned away as it attempted to flee, its ruptured eye squeezed shut. Over its moans rose the horrible laughter of its diminutive adversary, shrill, childlike, and delighting in blood-soaked murder. Her eel-headed tentacles latched onto those of Tentalus’ head, yanking the much larger creature back toward her with vile strength. A shark attack forced Nadia’s attention away from the visceral spectacle as it threw itself at her despite the bullet wounds riddling its head. As it flew her way she thrust one forearm out, spinning it into overdrive. “Chew on this!” The shark’s weight drove it straight into her outstretched limb, and with a wild grin Nadia allowed her momentum to drill straight through the roof of its mouth and out the top of its head. Killed instantly, the predator became dead weight as it fell, and Nadia retrieved her forearm from its dissolving husk with the attached muscle fiber.

Another breaching school demanded her attention, but after putting out only a handful of shots Nadia found herself distracted once again. Things had gotten crazy way fast, and it seemed to be getting to L if Hat Kid was the biggest of his concerns, the poor(?) guy. When Nadia glanced back at the rocky crags she was horrified to see that the ‘little girl’ had forcibly opened and extracted Tentalus’ eye, leaving the monster to suffer as it slowly died. Once she’d hauled the dripping, orange mass upward like the catch of the day and cackled gleefully over it, Scylla thanked the newcomers for their assistance by hurling the grisly trophy right at the Atomos--an attack so unexpected that fully avoiding it was a near impossibility. After that Scylla continued to stay where she was, but wasted no time sending her eels after the Seekers themselves. The monstrous tentacles reached all the way down from the rock face into the ocean for an all-out attack from below. When one lunged at Bella she lunged back, locking its grisly jaws with those of her leviathan tail. Her heavy metal force crushed down on the eel’s teeth, but Scylla responded to the pain by lifting her tentacle -and the Water Princess- up. Another tentacle shot up from below to target Bella’s dangling human half, driven off at the last second by a bombardment from Shippy’s cannons.

Peach’s eyebrow twitched. She ground her teeth, and clenched her fists. The next shark to pop its head it turned to fiery fish paste as her anger exploded through her boomshot, signalling that the Princess had had enough. “Damn it all!” she screamed, “I thought we were going to be careful! Shippy, full speed ahead, stay out of that monster’s range! Everyone on deck, help Bella! Everyone else, fall back RIGHT NOW! If you die, I’m gonna KILL you!”

Sal shook his scaly head. “Oh, you misunderssstand. A favor in the future. If we cross pathsss again in happier times and there’s sssomething you can do for me, I’ll let you know. In the meantime, enjoy the crossbows. I hope they’ll make you more friends than enemies.” His offhand comment happened to remind Linkle about Albedo, waiting for her across town in Grillby’s.

Edge of the Blue - Atlantis Temple


While Sephiroth gleefully perpetuated the cycle of retribution, eyes that never blinked watched her from afar. Thanks to her distinctive hair she could be seen from far enough that she couldn’t have possibly noticed the fishman security guards burbling through their handheld transceivers in low tones once her first game wrapped up in dramatic fashion. After winning on offense, and not wanting to spend more time with these diversion than absolutely necessary (or at least, not much more), she volunteered to go on the defense in the hopes of completing her set of stamps. A seething Syndra composed herself enough to join the opposite team, and once again the three wavemakers got to work. They put Sephiroth through her paces, challenging her to maintain a slippery footing on top of the unstable bowl. With her attention on the game, it was night impossible to keep tabs on the handful of security guards approaching from various directions.

Thirty seconds later the round came to an end, with the swordswoman still perched atop the center platform. Her opponents could only concede defeat, going their separate ways with more or less graciousness. The next group of four had already formed up for their own game--although, looking at them now, none of them looked very excited to be making waves of their own, and their attire suggested a rather extreme confidence that none would be going for a swim. And although it was true Sephiroth had just pulled off back-to-back wins in this game, they all seemed to be looking at her with something other than admiration. When she turned to move on, the young woman with a big purple ponytail pointed her finger at her. “Hold it right there!”

A handful of fishman guards blocked the other exits as the dancer, the heiress, the thug, and the officer fanned out. Sephiroth’s guard had been down, and whoever these people were had her surrounded. As vacationers distanced themselves from the scene, the older policeman threw down a half-red, half-white ball, and in a spray of light a strange-looking creature in a tiered black dress appeared. Some kind of shadow flew out from beneath it and tagged Sephiroth’s own, somehow holding it down to prevent her escape. The officer crossed his arms. “By order of Admiral Merlwyb you are hereby under arrest for the murder and consumption of KMS Scharnhorst of the Azur Navy. You have the right to remain silent. You have the right to legal counsel. And anything you say or do can be used against you. Cooperation is not optional.”

Shantae looked just about as fierce as she could, filled with a fiery anger for the killer before her. “You gonna come quietly?” All four were ready, their weapons -if they had them- close at hand.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Zoey Boey
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Zoey Boey ~I'm Stone Free, do what I please~

Member Seen 7 hrs ago

Level 5: 22/50
Location: Atomos --> The Bottomless Sea Surface
Word Count: 399
Points Gained: 1
New EXP Balance--- Level 5 : 23/50

Sakura would, pretty much immediately, feel bad. The first thing the purple monster did was run away. "What?! I thought they couldn't run away! Oh, no! I'm evil now!" Sakura cried out in dismay.

"I'm sorry!" She called out after him. Sakura shrieked, though, as the real menace revealed itself. That so-called 'little girl' was a big old villain! "WAH! This is horrible!" She was pulling on him! Was she gonna kill him?! It looked like it!

She ripped his eye out, and threw it at the Atomos! "Nantekotta i?!" Sakura swore in shock, slapping the sides of her head. Immediately, she tapped her chest, summoned a friend heart, and threw it as had as she could at the purple monster. If it didn't hit, her goal was to get closer.

Unfortunately for her plans, the mean monster lady was going to try to eat all of them. Weird eels shot out through the water. Sakura gasped as Bella was scooped right out. Needless to say, her priorities changed quickly. "BELLA!" She cried out. She fired a hadoken at the incoming tentacle, but Shippy saved her first. Sakura clenched her fists and glared at the 'little girl.'

"Kono yarō..!" She growled. The flash of anger passed and she began skating her way towards Bella. When any of the eels got too close, she did a running "Shenpu!", batting the limb away with a spin kick and keeping up her momentum. She fired off a few cannon shots, too, pre-emptively shooting the eels before they got to her.

"Put her down, or I'll make sushi out of you!" Sakura threatened. Once she was in range she leapt, high into the air. She wrapped her arms around the eel that was latched onto Bella's tail. She latched onto it and crawled up a little. "Get ready, Bella-san!" Once she was near the mouth she wrapped her fingers between its teeth and wrenched up. As hard as she could, she was gonna get this thing off her friend.

"Grrrr!" She grit her teeth.
Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Potemking
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Member Online

LOCATION: Edge Of The Blue - Bottomless Sea
WORD COUNT: 1,230(+2 EXP)Level up!
MENTIONS: Shippy, Mr. L, Peach directly. Supporting Ms. Fortune's Shippy defense and then Sakura's rescue effort!

Mirage nearly toppled over onto Blazermate as Shippy got snappy, the explosion having gone off a bit too close for comfort. "GaH! So sorry!" He spoke quickly, the situation around him getting into an overwhelming state as people came down from the Atomos, showering Link and Ace Cadet which was funny, but he didn't have time to admire slapstick at the moment. He saw something weird though, noticing Link crush the spirits he had leftover, the bundle turning into... Equipment? So they could break them for goodies, too? That was a tidbit he'd keep in mind for later, but now wasn't the time.

Geralt wasted no time in absolutely wasting that moob monster, as some of the others closed in at different paces. Though he was getting beaten to begin with, so this was only bringing forth results quicker as the Seekers drew in. He wasn't sure if he should be going out to help, and as they seemed to continue to fight, Mr. L was smarting off about him being a mook again. "I can swim!" Mirage defended himself against Mr. L's words, the returned sass causing the man's hands to raise to his hips in annoyance. "Who're you calling a mook anyways, huh? 'Least I don't have an L above my forehead and stories from King Bowser to prove you earned it, buddy! Why don't you just jump into one of those bottomless pi--"

Mirage would've kept going, but Nadia called everyone to arms: It seems like the grenade plan had truly sunk after all, and now they were like fish in a barrel for the creatures in the sea. Or... Fish on a ship. Ah, shit, they were being attacked for real now! Mirage's stubbier legs scampered across the deck, figuring if the opposition was in the water, then the cannons would be a better idea than the Wingman. He slipped into the seat, quickly looking over the weapon in front of him in a moment of childish admiration as his fingers graced the controls. "Hah, reminds me of Shelia!" He said aloud to himself, eyes tracking the forms in the water. An audible yelp escaped him as a shark had the guts to jump straight out at the cannon, and him. In his panic his thumbs pressed down, opening fire and shredding the shark into nothing but splashed saltwater and dissolving shark bits. Oh yeah, that felt good. The creatures began to swarm, Nadia seeming to fight those that'd be reachable by her own equipped cannons or brutal fists if they dared get too close. Holy cow, that girl was nuts!

Mirage had no time to gawk though, as he began aiming at the fins popping out of the water. Sure it wasn't fancy, but when it came to weaponry, you didn't need it looking fancy to kill the opposition. When you looked as good as Mirage, however, you were always styling on the competition. Mirage opened fire, shells connecting with the main target and the impact AOE damaging a few more, but only enough to startle them back as their friend was reduced to pounded fading fish paste. He would have went for the other sharks, but the Mofish caught his eye: They swam together like a unit and he'd seen some already try and board. Well, the school of them in Mirage's sights weren't boarding anytime soon, as he'd apply man's greatest violent solution: More dakka.

"Dakka dakka dakka dakka! Brrrr!" Mirage made additional noises with his gunfire, some of his firepower missing the smaller targets but the ones that connected not only killed their intended target, but the AOE of the shells was much more of a shock for them than it was for the sharks. Oh, this was just like back in the Games! Racking up kills, finding thrills, and--

click click click click

"Nuts." Mirage exclaimed, having run out of ammo in his recklessness. Aw, well. At least he had fun while it lasted! Thankfully it seemed to begin an automatic reloading process, but he knew these damn things took forever, so he was cautiously scanning the battlefield making sure nothing was coming up on him.

Mirage was horrified by the distracting sight of Scylla not only taking out the eye of her opposition, but then throwing it at the Atomos as if it was mocking them for their choice in the fight. "Well screw you, too!" He shouted, invested in this fight now that he'd spilled blood-- Or, Spirits? On the battlefield. Usually Mirage was fairly cool-headed, he knew how to disengage and instigate a fight again in his favor, but as of late he'd been guns blazing until his opposition was gone. Most of his jobs required everything to go bye bye anyways back at the Guild, but there were surely better ways he could have handled some situations.

He wasn't very sure of who Bella was personally, but he witnessed her get caught in a nasty situation and knew they were on the same side, so helping was the right thing to do, yeah? The only thing that kept him from opening fire in the distance was the fact his gun was still reloading, and Peach's loud voice startling him into falling out of his seat with the help of Shippy's speed increase. As he pulled himself up, her instructions were clear, and he pulled his wingman from it's holster. That crazy-ass school girl was jumping onto the appendage and trying to free Bella already, but Mirage figured putting some pressure on wouldn't hurt, right? You never leave a squadmate behind, after all! "Numero Dos of the rescue team, on it ma'am!" He confirmed his duty to Peach, taking position near the railing while deploying a decoy near the railing as well in a semi-empty space, figuring if anything lunged at it they would be alerted to it's presence. And it was way better than him or Nadia getting chewed on right now. He lowered his armor plate before putting both hands on his gun, taking aim at the appendage that Bella and Sakura were struggling with. As he fired, his shot obviously whiffed; The kick from his revolver in his smaller form a little above what he expected, his bullet flying off course and into nothing but air. He attempted to regain his composure quickly as he noticed Sakura seemed to have an escape method for Bella, but she wasn't exactly in a place to defend herself from oncoming threats while attempting to pry Bella free. "Come on, Elliot!" He lectured to himself, grip tightening on his firearm.

Focused now, Mirage began providing covering fire for Sakura's efforts: Anything that poked out of the water to try and attack her would be getting a heavy revolver round through it to tell it to piss off. That being said, he had five shots, but if he could make them count with his cover fire then maybe they'd get Bella free quickly. Then they could focus on kicking that eel-girl's ass! Because despite Peach's orders, Mirage wasn't ready to just retreat from this now! Fortunately she might know his condition and not judge him as harshly for it, though seeing this battle through to the end was just boiling in Mirage's veins. A glint in his eyes and a smirk on his face as he focused, waiting to blast anything that tried to harass Sakura's rescue efforts.
Hidden 2 mos ago Post by DracoLunaris
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DracoLunaris Multiverse tourist

Member Online

The Koopa Troop

wordcount: 1,420 (+3)
Bowser: Level 9 EXP: ////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (77/90)
Bowser Jr: Level 7 EXP: //////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (68/70)
Kamek: Level 7 EXP: /////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// (67/70)
Location: Edge of the Blue – Bottomless Ocean
Feat: Rika

While he’d been first to move, Bowser’s lumbering speed meant that a lot happened before he could get anywhere remotely useful. The nature of shipgirl locomotion meant it felt like standing on a very slow escalator that walking up did nothing to help, something Bowser quickly learned from experience, which was incredibly frustrating.

He’d have had to be quick if he’d have wanted to get in on the action, because their team hosted a pair of massive abyssal guns thanks to Bella and now also Geralt, who’s twin fire, aided by some fireballs from Sakura, absolutely wasted the titanic tentacle monster. The beast toppled, and the monster girl it had been fighting pounced on this vulnerability and with hideous strength straight up ripped its eye out. Bowser winced. She had the right idea with going for that weak spot, but she didn't half go overboard with it. Then she hauled the eye up with her tentacle eels and, completely unprovoked, indeed the opposite of provoked considering they’d helped her, hurled it at the Atomos.

The giant eye flew forth, dripping viscera as it soared towards the Atomos. There wasn't time to dodge (not that the ship could really do that anyway). There was only time to brace for impact.

A panicked part of Kamek’s brain wanted him to try and teleport away, but, well, there were two children on board along with his elderly self, so that instinct was immediately quashed.

As he watched in adrenaline fueled slow motion, Jr made a grab for Mimi, who had been sitting on the control board by the window like a bobble head, (Tyrant was safely huddled under the control panel, where they’d been cowering since the shooting started) and then tried to shield both her and himself with his arms, only for to be grabbed from his seat by a purple hued claw and pulled behind a spiky shell, ”Dad?” and finding himself hugged close to a string next to the hat wearing kid as the mass of flesh hit home.

The front window of the ship shattered all at once, hailing the insides of the cabin with a shower of glass shards. Yet the children were shielded by the hardy shell of the shadow Bowser who had been summoned by Kamek and instantly grabbed both kids to protect them. The same could not be said of the mage himself. Having used the moments he had to keep the kids safe all he could do for himself was close his eyes and make a futile attempt to shield himself with his old limbs.

Yet no death by a thousand cuts came.

Kamek opened his eyes again, and found the End standing before him, blood leaking from an approvingly smiling mouth for just a moment before he dissipated again and the field of glass that had embedded itself in the elderly striker’s back dropped harmlessly to the floor.

There was a brief moment of calm as everyone caught their breath and their senses, interrupted a heartbeat later when half a dozen alarms started blaring.

”Arg my ship!” Jr cried out. He pushed himself away form the hat kid and out of the grip of the shadow Bowser (who dissipated a moment later when Kamek slumped in his seat, overcome by both the stress and magical exertion) and rushed to the controls of the vessel, emitting little ”ows” as his bare scaly feet crunched over the ruins of the windscreen. He jumped into the chair, winced, and then grabbed the controls of the ship and hauled on them to try and right themselves.

”nonono come on” he shouted at it as they continued to list to the side, before pulling out the necro-smasher and whacking the control panel a few times,then looking at its readouts and then turning, first to Kamek and then, once it was clear that the old mage was out of it, to the hat kid.

”You. What’s your name. Why don't I know your name. Take this” he tossed her the wooden mallet ”and go fix the right engine before we tip over!” before turning back to the controls and fighting to keep them airborne.

”JUNIOR!” The king cried out in horror as the ship holding his entire family got smashed into by the massive flying eyeball. The mass of ripped out flesh fell to the sea with a titanic splash, leaving the front of the ship buckled and bent and the window above shattered with no son of his in sight. Then after what felt like an age the prince appeared at the wheel again and started yelling at those within to help him and the king let out a breath he hadn’t known he’d been holding. They were ok. But they also weren't out of the woods yet. The impact had jolted one of the engines at the back in a way it hadn't liked and it was smoking as the airship slowly sunk to one side. Bowser was sure his son could handle it however, and instead he turned his attention back to the person who had attacked his kin.

”HEY NO WE’RE TRYING TO HELP!” Bowser yelled at the monster girl, but it was too late, the hounds had been unleashed while the little girl sat safely in the distance and laughed at them with childish glee as her minions assailed them and the predators of the sea went into a frenzy all around them. To the king that would be endearing if he weren't on the receiving end.

“Princ- Bella!” Rika cried out in alarm as her commander turned friend was grabbed by one of the great eels while trying to duel another. “let her go!” she yelled as the woman was hauled into the air and without hesitation, charged the fish alongside Sakura. Instinctively she took up an escort position, sailing almost back to back with the street fighter (though leaving her enough space to do her spins) while using her veritable pile of cannons, oversized rifle, bayonet, explosive slime and hull-blades to down anything trying to stop them from reaching their friend.

When the street-fighter reached the eel she leapt up to climb it in order to pry the jaws open to free Bella. Rika swooped around the eel trying, along with Mirage, to keep both the other ladies engaged with it safe while they handled the situation. Using a robot arm mounted hull blade like a cleaver she chopped one of the nasty bitty fish in two when it tried to jump up and bite Sakura, then turned her 6 and 1 cannons on the closest other eel head, showering it with a barrage of shells. Anything else that tried to get involved would meet a similar fate.

As the ladies fought the tentacles Bowser finally caught up with them.

”Running isn't going to cut it! We need to stop her or she’ll just chase us!” he shouted back a Peach when she demanded they retreat. It wasn't like the ladies had listened when they charged in to help anyway.

”Without killing her!” he added, right as an eel head rose up from the water and lunged for him, only for an army of skeletons to appear and wrestle with it for a moment, before tossing it aside, not hurting it but still handling the attack.

“Do you ever learn?” Marie the former skullgirl asked him before her striker timer ran out and she vanished again.

”Yeah! I do! I just. Gah!” the king smacked his head a few times as if that would help him do so. He needed to think. They needed to hurt, but not kill, the girl. He needed to get close because his only ranged options where the water cannons. He needed to get there first before she became another Marie (the king not registering the fact that Sakura’s infinite mercy had been applied to the giant monster because of his focus on trying to think) But he was so slow. And the water was dangerous he’d get bogged down by fish (indeed one of the snappers tried to bite him only for it to be ensnared in tentacruel tendrils and then eaten alive by a pair of gun barrels for its efforts without the king’s intervention) while trying to get there. So he needed to bypass those too. Go over them.

Think think think how could he use what he had let him go faster. Water cannons. Speed. Height. Where had he…

”Oh!” the king snapped his fingers and then deployed his octet of arm mounted guns but, instead of pointing them towards their foe and uselessly trying to spray her form well out of range, pointed them backwards.

He crouched and then with almighty bounded leaped into the air while, inspired by a certain plumber and a mad scientist’s water sprayer backpack he’d once used, firing the high pressure water cannons backwards as a form of propulsion. Propelled like a water bottle rocket he jumped over a shoal of sharks and then hammered down onto the waves again, a ring of fire shock-waving over the surface of the watery crater his impact formed. Then the sea rushed in to fill the divot his impact had formed and the king used that force to add to his next jump, launching himself towards the tiny terror again with another blast of his water based jetpack.

”Leave my minions alone kid, or I’ll make you leave them alone!” He roared at her, trying to hide his already slightly labored breathing, as he approached her rocky domain at a higher speed than he deserved.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by ZAVAZggg
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Member Seen 13 hrs ago

Level: 3 (21/30)
Word Count: 282
Location: Edge of the Blue - Atlantis Temple
EXP: +1

Sephiroth let out an annoyed sigh. These creatures just didn't know when to stop did they? Taking the few scant seconds given to her to examine the situation, the former SOLDIER weighed her chances of successfully escaping. It would have been much easier had that strange creature not pinned her shadow down. That was the first thing that had to go as far as Sephiroth was concerned. From there she could see to dispatching these worthless beings and continuing on her way. The only question was how...

It was then that an idea struck her, though she'd no idea if it would actually work or not. There was only one way to find out however. Settling her attention directly on the woman with the big purple ponytail, she flashed her a slight grin.

"Sure, I'll go with you."

She crossed her arms over her chest.

"But first I need to grab my rigging. And preferably my clothes. Unless you're okay with me facing justice in nothing more than a swimsuit, and one that doesn't belong to me at that. Before you ask, yes, you can send along an armed guard."

While extremely risky, Sephiroth's plan was a simple matter of divide and conquer. She knew she couldn't do anything while this creature had a hold on her shadow, especially with how outnumbered she currently was. Thus the easiest solution would be to take them out in small groups. By accepting an armed guard, Sephiroth could take down the people they sent along with her, grab her rigging and clothes, and then see to dispatching the rest or running.

All they had to do was buy the half-truth she'd just tried to sell.
Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Gentlemanvaultboy
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Member Seen 20 min ago

Hyrule Warriors

Word Count: 1769

Level 5 - (37/50) + 3

Level 9 - (24/90) + 3


Location: The Bottomless Sea


Link hated that he was right. At the very least Geralt managed to handle to physically largest threat they faced right now in a single withering barrage of artillery fire. The things blood spilled out into the ocean as holes opened up all over it, the main one producing a gaping wound big enough for the smaller monster to build a house in if she felt like trading a hard rock for soft, gooey monster innards.

With the blood and viscera, however, their came a swarm of ocean predators driven to a frenzy over the prospect of such a large easy meal. They didn't seem to realize or care where all the blood was coming from, just that it belonged to something on the surface. So they just went after the first thing they saw. Ms. Fortune and Mirage acted quickly, firing either from their own guns or mounting the shipboard defenses. Following their lead Link push himself away from the short rail and flopped down onto the deck beside the loot pile he had generated. He gave the stuff a once over while he was down there. A trident, a few strange dolls, a toy plane, a gauntlet, nothing that seemed useful for this situati...wait. That plane, could that have been like the ones before? He reached out, tried to store it, and found that he couldn't. After all, he was full up on weapons wasn't he?

He did some quick inventory management, leaving the broken sword and pickaxe in the pile in exchange for the plane and trident. Satisfied he looked toward the cannon embankment across the deck. Mirage had already reached his and was covering one side, so Link gripped the jostling deck with his fingers. He pulled himself forward while kicking with his feet, throwing himself across the deck like a Hot-footed frog. It was no different than when he went mountain climbing. Easier, in fact. He didn't have to worry about finding a safe space to catch his breath. Another leap brought him past Blazermate, and the last carried him all the way to the cannon embankment. He dragged himself up into the chair and grabbed the controls. Ms. Fortune hadn't made this look too hard from what brief glimpses he'd gotten of her using it in their previous battle.

In the few moment where he was getting the handle of them, though, a small school of the most disgusting fish Link had ever seen in his life leaped out of the water at the embankment. At him! A few reached him, latching onto his arm, shoulder, the side of his leg, and wriggling as hard as they could even as they should have been suffocating in the air. Even the few that had missed and hit the deck were flopping towards him in their bloodlust, and in front of him the water was already rippling again. When the fish leaped for another attack, though, they were knocked out of the air as a mace head whipped through the air on a wire. They scattered, falling back into the water, as Link turned and saw Cia standing beside. She reached down, ripped one of the fish that hand sunk their teeth into him off his body, threw it to the deck, and stomped on it.

This time he was sure of it. "How do you keep getting out?" He asked.

"The words you're looking for are 'Thank you again, Mistress Cia.'" She replied, continuing to pull the animals off him and smash the ones on the deck. He turned to face forward as she did. That was something to think about later. As she picked and kicked fish until her timer ran down Link pressed down on the triggers and let loose on the ocean with both barrel, turning and firing every time he saw a fin, churned up water, or a suspicious bubble.

The gun wasn't faultless. Eventually he had to let up as the thing started to reload itself. It was fortunate it did, because over the howl of the cannons he wouldn't have heard the crash and the shattering of glass. Unlike the others Link hadn't been paying much attention to how the battle between the ocean horrors was going, figuring that all it would take was another shot of Geralt's main gun to bring that to a swift and decisive end. He didn't have any context when he looked up at the source of the sound to see the behemoths eyeball dropping from the smashed in cockpit of the Atomos. He did understand, though, that it was a bad thing for a flying ship to start listing to the side toward the bloody maw of the sea. He understood, in a moment of horror, that the Atomos was right now commanded entirely by children and the elderly.

He didn't know what they were up to, but if that knock had bamboozled them they needed time to evacuate the Atomos and board Shippy. Kamek was old, but he had seen the Koopa's clones and the way he rode around on that flying broom. If he had time he could get the kids out of there. Link whipped out the slate, activated the Stasis Rune, and let the power fly at the ship. Golden chains extended from nowhere, wrapping the ship and stopping its fall cold. The ship hung there, its armor giving off a golden glow, as Shippy sailed past.

It was only on Peaches orders that he directed his attention back toward the monster fight, spotting Bella clutched in one of the tentacles of the smaller monster. Sakura was latched on, trying to pry the rotten things jaws open while Mirage and Rika provided covering fire. His eyes followed up the tentacle to the little monster laughing on the rock, and the other tendrils that wriggled down from under it.

He pulled out the Airplane. This was an abyssal plane, he knew it. He'd been on the receiving end of them. He knew how deceptively dangerous they were, and how annoying it was to get buzzed while trying to fight something else. Any attention off Bella and the others would be of help. He just hoped the plane worked for someone that was only part Abyssal. He reared his arm back and aimed at the little monster. "If you're listening, that one!" He said to it before hucking it through the air like a spear.

At first it glided through the air, and as it went Link had a dreadful memory of that boomerang fish, but after a moment the sound of little propeller spinning reached him. The plane began gaining altitude, zooming off toward the rock. It flew along, rising rising, rising, high above the battlefield below. Above Rika, above Bowser, above Sakura and Bella's desperate struggle. It circled the rock as it went, masterfully riding on the air currents until it spotted the target it had been given. It came around, flying low and approaching the monster from behind before allowing its little guns to roar to life as it came in for a strafing run.


Merge Rate: 30%

Location: The Frozen Highlands - Snowdin ~ Morshu's Shop--->Grillby's

"Oh. OH!" Linkle said in surprise. "I get it. Sure. Sure! Oh, thank you so much!" She handed Sal the rest of her Rupees, then gingerly laid her her old crossbows were the white ones had been. She hesitated for a moment, her hands resting on the old familiar wood. "Just make sure they get a good home. They're really reliable. I wouldn't be half the hero I am if I hadn't had them." She patted the stock, then stood and slotted the new ones snugly into the holsters in her boots. They even fit there perfectly. It was like it had been destiny that guided them to her, in a time when she definitely needed to be stronger than ever before. No matter how much sentimental value they held, the most important thing right now was getting stronger and beating Galeem.

"Don't worry. Like I said earlier, my friends are going to show up any day and when they do it's going to be a lot easier to travel." She assured the lizalfo before walking to the door. "We'll definitely see each other again! See you later." She waved to the both of them, smiling, and stepped back out into the snow.

She just had a few things to do. First things first, just like with the oil, she went over to her sled and wrapped up both the cute hat and the wolf hood for later. She figured the cute wolf hat could go to the Kid in the Hat, and she thought the wolf hood would look perfect of Geralt to go with his cool medallion. The next thing she did was finally use some of this green money to open up the magic box, hoping that there were some gift worthy items there as well.

She hadn't just been thinking about Grillby when it came to apology gifts. She figured she owed everybody something for doing what she had done.

Packing everything up onto her sled she started down the street to head for Grillby's. Luckily for her it was only a light snow, and it hadn't filled in the footprints leading away from the shop door. She followed Albedo's tracks until she came to the main street and spotted the big tree. She stopped as she pulled up beside it, taking a look at gifts piled there again. Grillby had said yesterday that she was free to take one, so she picked out a big box wrapped in shiny green paper. She opened it slowly, careful not to rip the paper so she could use it later, and set whatever it was fate decided to give her on her sled among the other gifts.

Parking her sled beside the door, she picked up the giftwrapped oil and made her way inside while trying not to look at the hole she had put in the establishment. Once she was inside she went straight to the matter at hand, stepping up to the bar and placing the gift on the counter before bowing to the man apologetically. "I'm sorry my big head put a hole in your café." She said, before looking up. "I didn't know what to get somebody made of fire, so I just went with my gut. I hope it's not bad."

She waited to hear Grillby's response before looking around for Albedo and going over to join him.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Zoey Boey
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Zoey Boey ~I'm Stone Free, do what I please~

Member Seen 7 hrs ago

Level 1: 3/10
Word Count: 461
Location: Al Mamoon
Points Gained: 1
New EXP Balance--- Level 1: 4/10

Jesse tensed up a little, crossing her arms and straightening her back against the wall.

(Shit. Did I really just get clocked by some random kid? I'm not that much of a weirdo, am I?)


(Don't answer that.)

Jesse watched the travelling group go into the museum. Creepy scientist guy was also someone on her radar. Really, though, she couldn't know until someone made a move. If she thought every strange looking person could be a suspect, then she'd never get anywhere. All she knew was this museum was the perfect place for this phantom thief, whoever they were, to strike. Hopefully she'd be able to sense the Object of Power, or Polaris would be able to point her in the right direction. Things like that were tricky, though. Polaris could only see so much, and what she could act upon was made even less apparent to Jesse.

The group of people walked into the museum itself. Jesse was beginning to wonder if that was a good or bad idea. According to her research, bypassing walls was not an issue for this paracriminal. She figured trying to prevent the theft itself was pointless. Unfortunately, such an option was lost to her when the guard shut the gate. At capacity. Polaris, however, indicated the group of strangers that entered the museum. A light blue kaleidoscope of glass formed around one in particular's head. Now that she thought about it...something about them was strange, too. Jesse couldn't exactly put her finger on it. Did they have something to do with the Resonance problem? Someone had to know something, right? From what she had gathered so far, everyone chose to stay away from the ruined city in the North. Which was reasonable. But those well-dressed humans were also different from everyone else she had seen thus far. They would require further study, too.

(One problem at a time. Let's just kill time until something interesting happens. If you have any clues though, I'd love to hear them.) Jesse squinted up at a building across the street.

(Maybe it would be better if we got a vantage point?) Jesse pushed off the wall she was leaning against and walked across the street. Once she was to the building, she made an effort to find a way ontop of the roof. Jesse wasn't a parkour expert, but she had a good sense of balance and was athletic. Hopefully in all the hustle and bustle of Al Mamoon nobody would bother her.

"Hup-" She pulled herself onto the one storey building and crouched down. She tried to see over the wall and also tried to follow the group of kids, that painter, and that weird old guy with her eyes.
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Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Archmage MC
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Archmage MC

Member Seen 15 hrs ago

Level 9 Blazermate - (6/90) +1

Edge of the Blue – Seaward Bay
Words: Less than 750

Blazermate was right to fortify their position before a fight ensued, although she was expecting to fight the giant moob thing, not the little girl with the eels coming out of her bottom. She also was expecting her zombie to move further from the ship before it exploded, forcing her to heal up Shippy for the slight bit of chip damage that got through, but also at least letting Blazermate overheal her for the stuff that was coming. And thanks to how much health Shippy had, she was a good healing battery for Blazermate's new shield ability.

Since the sharks were stirred up, thanks in part to Blazermate's exploding zombie, many had to start to attack them to keep them off shippy. Thanks to their cover however, it allowed Dell to build up his buildings in relative peace, and soon his level 3 sentry was assisting them with its twin Gatling guns and rockets, attacking anything that got close while the engineer himself was shooting his pistol at things as well. With that covered, Blazermate focused on the little monster girl who tried to bring down the Atomos, with Link saving it from going down. The monster girl, having grabbed Bella in one of its tentacles, managed to gather the attention of many of the people who weren't attacking the various things trying to attack them on top of shippy, many trying to free her from the tentacle.

Blazermate scanned their new foe, and found that attacking the tentacles wouldn't do much or any damage, with the main body being the spot that held the weak spot. "Hey guys, if your trying to beat this tentacle lady, you have to attack the main body. You wont do damage if you attack the tentacles!" Blazermate said, directing everyone where to attack. Sadly all she could do was sit back and heal/overheal, but this built her charge fairly fast and filled her Projectile shield charge, letting her prepare for stuff if it came.

Mirage, one of their new pickups at the island, was one of the first to run out of ammo as he was enjoying shooting things. Mr L meanwhile, was asking for some help with constructing something. Seeing two problems that needed to be fixed Blazremate said. "Hey if you need ammo that thing over there makes it." Blazermate said, pointing to the dispenser for Mirage. "It'll also heal you but not as fast as I can." She then pointed at the engineer and said to Mr. L. "I can't make things and it'll take me too long to get to my touchup kit. He can help you with his wrench though, its magic! Just make sure his buildings are safe."
Hidden 2 mos ago Post by MULTI_MEDIA_MAN


Member Seen 15 hrs ago

Geralt of Rivia

Edge of the Blue- Seaward Bay

Lvl 7 (38/70) -> Lvl 7 (39/70)

Word Count: 468 words

With a shower of blood and viscera, Geralt's bombardment did its job, and did it damn well. The giant monster that was previously attacking the smaller, monstrous-seeming girl was now sporting a massive hole, leaking its vital fluids into the water, and....desperately trying to escape?! That raised a number of questions Geralt wasn't quit ready or qualified to answer at this moment, and it also raised the question of what to do now that the one they'd ostensibly tried to rescue was chasing it down.

"This is what we get for helping..." Geralt muttered, turning his guns on the scores of vicious fish that had appeared in response to the blood and chunks of tentacle monster filling the ocean. He could see the Seekers aboard Shippy doing the same, and edged the Ordnance Platform closer to the living vessel. The undersized weapons platform, sadly, could only move at a disgustingly slow pace, and soon Geralt found himself regretting just about every decision he'd made since boarding the Atomos once more. Raising an arm and waving, Geralt yelled out to those onboard Shippy. "Little help?! Turns out this thing doesn't really do moving all that well!" With any luck, they'd swing by close enough for him to make the jump over.

Still, until he was picked up, he'd keep his guns trained on the schools of flesh-eating fish trying to turn Shippy and his other allies into mincemeat. He wasn't willing to risk hitting Bella, Sakura, or the others who chose to engage in close-quarters combat with their new enemy.

And still, things got worse. The little monstergirl grabbed the larger monster, and ripped its eye out. Even Geralt had to suppress a wince at that. A moment later, she did something the megaWitcher didn't expect: chucked the damn thing like a stone at the Atomos.

The next moments went by in a flash. Bowser yelled, Shippy started moving, and then the Atomos was suspended in the air, radiating a bright yellow light. Something about it seemed familiar to Geralt, and he had to assume it was the doing of one of their allies. He let out a little sigh of relief as he watched Bella, Sakura, Rika, and eventually even Bowser's fight. Bella's situation was certainly unenviable, what with the whole "Trapped in the jaws of a demon eel thing", but she had her friends backing her up. Speaking of which, Sakura had Friend Hearted the giant monster he shot a massive hole into. Part of him was exasperated with her apparent desire to befriend every living creature, but part of him was a bit relieved, because they'd clearly chosen to back the wrong horse when they first came down.

Which was, frankly, about par for the course in Geralt's experience of "helping with limited information."
Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Yankee
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Yankee God of Typos

Member Seen 11 hrs ago

Word Count: 764 (+2 exp)
Level: 7 - Total EXP: 44/70
Location: Edge of the Blue

The Ace Cadet met Nadia's incredulous expression with an amused look of his own. While he'd certainly been under the impression that they were trying to avoid getting into fights for as long as possible while they made their way through the stormy ocean, he also couldn't really deny that he would like to take a crack at that giant one-eyed monster himself. After his third drenching courtesy of the Atomos crew splashing down into the water one by one, the hunter got to his feet and punched a fist into his waiting palm.

"Well if we're doin' this," he said, equipping the bow from his back. While he briefly looked between the small monster and the big one, his preferred target was clear - but he was a little behind on the draw, as Geralt rose out of the sea on his new gun platform and blew more than a couple holes right through the beast. It was awesome, impressive, aaand just a tad demotivating. After that assault the monster was beset upon by the eels of it's opponent, and it looked like it was going down quick. "Aw, man," he muttered to himself. In that case there was no need for the Cadet to go engage it, but his disappointment was mild and easily looked over besides, especially as a few new groups of ravenous sharqs and fish appeared.

While some on board took to Shippy's armaments, the Cadet got some more practice in with the miniguns on his own rigging. They mostly served as deterrents for the smaller toothy fish, but when any sharq brave enough to try and leap aboard it was quickly put down with an arrow or two. He was only distracted twice - once when the dark sorceress that had taken Link captive appeared on deck suddenly (he must have missed when she'd been made into a spirit comrade), and once when the child-like menace ripped out the larger monster's eye and launched it directly at the Atomos.

When it smashed through the front of the airship and it looked like the vessel might go down, the Cadet was so caught off guard that he missed one of the mofish making it onboard and gnawing at his leg. It was saved, frozen in midair by golden chains, and the Cadet breathed in relief. Where'd that come from? Maybe Frog had some kind of hidden magic, or maybe it was something in Link's slate of tricks? The Hylian had been fiddling with it. The Cadet gave the mofish a swift kick to send it flying back into the water and then leapt onto the deck's railing, nodding approvingly at the blonde. "Very good, no damage done by an evil eye like that is any match for our hearts of justice.

Now, I'll take to the water and - !"
It was clear that the hunter intended on leaping and joining the fight head on, frenzied fish be damned, but Peach's harsh words stilled him mid-movement. He glanced back at her, finding the Princess not in the mood for arguing.

"Er, right. Yes, Boss!" he called, and really, where had he picked that up? Maybe his fellow monster hunter was rubbing off on him. He'd remained right where he was on Shippy's railing at the Princess' order, and narrowed his eyes at the situation in front of him. The eels were being taken on already, and it seemed like Bella would be free of her grapple soon, then they'd be able to get out of the monster's reach. Except for the fact that the Koopa King was making a beeline straight for it.

"If it's a monster protecting it's territory it won't go after us once we leave it!" he shouted after Bowser. Cadet thought that might be the case just because it hadn't moved towards them at all, only sent it's eels. It was too late to stop him though. "Without killing her" he'd even said. It was hard to tell sometimes if something was a person or a mere monster, but their current enemy seemed pretty dang monstrous. He had some options though. With the knowledge that Blazermate imparted, the Cadet raised his bow once more and swapped to the poison arrow coatings. He took careful aim at the little monster. While she was well out of his most effective range, he was fairly sure he could still strike her if his aim was good. With his current set boosting the poison, as long as he could inflict her with it then she might relent in pain and confusion. Just breathe, aim, and... He fired.
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Hidden 2 mos ago 2 mos ago Post by Lugubrious
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Lugubrious Makes the big edits

Member Seen 24 min ago

Al Mamoon - Palatial Gallery

@Zoey Boey

By the time that Jesse pulled herself onto the roof of a convenient building, attracting a few odd stares but no attempts at interference, and turned her vision back toward the museum, the newest guests were just about inside. The boys and their cat moved with purpose and disappeared through the front doors in just a few seconds, followed by the red-haired woman at a far more leisurely pace. However, even she -distant and unfocused- entered the building faster than the older man, whose speed had nothing to do with his age. Rather, he seemed to be lagging behind. He lingered for a moment on the threshold, allowing the others to go ahead, and then with a subtle motion snapped a strange device from thin air.

The bizarre doohickey resembled a revolver, albeit one utterly crammed with nonsensical attachments. From this distance Jesse could catch only the faintest glimpse of taped batteries and naked wires, with the glimmer of copper where the revolver’s chamber should be. The scientist-looking fellow shot a very thin, very silent bolt of electricity at the gate, then the ground below it, before closing and -judging by the flash through the glass- doing the same to the front door. Then, the onlooker could see no more.

Once inside the Museum of Vanity, the Phantom Thieves commenced their search. They split up among the sightseers to look high and low, across the high walls and through the off-kilter, frame-shaped doorways, but not at the paintings. Only one visage inside this dreadful, gaudy place would set their minds at ease, and it was not the portrait that Mona and Skull met in front of in the east wing.

The blond stared upward at the enormous painting that loomed above him, and even further above Mona. Stark despite its vivid, even discordant purple and blue, and dripping as if just barely holding itself together, it was one among many portraits of talented young individuals that Madarame had stolen. People who in the old faker’s heart were no more than objects. “Just as I remember it that first day. Our first infiltration where, y’know, we kinda knew what we were doin’.”

Mona shook his big, round head. “Jury’s still out on that one. Regardless, it’s not the Yusuke we’re after. Let’s keep looking.”

They found Joker beneath a giant sculpture of solid gold. Its sheets, shaped into a spiral waterfall, supported statues of youths descending as though on a slide. Guests crowded around it, oohing and aahing over its magnificence. They must, Joker reasoned, not be reading the plaque. He remembered the spirit of it, if not the exact words, as well as the revulsion they inspired in him, and read over what the inscription had to say with a stony gaze.

The Infinite Spring
A conglomerate work of art that the great director Madarame created with his own funds. These individuals must offer their ideas to the director for the rest of their lives. Those who cannot do so have no worth living!

“Y’know, if that Madarame bastard’s here in this place too, I wouldn’t mind kickin’ his ass again,” Skull remarked, arms crossed. Rather than offer some sort of objective guidance or even-keeled coolheadedness, Joker could only agree. In a distortion this massive, far greater even than Mementos, he couldn’t possibly tell what if any good might come of such action in the real world, but if Madarame had somehow been ‘reset’ like Shadow Futaba, knocking him down a peg would be well worth any time put in. Plus, he knew the mechanics this time.

The Phantom Thieves prepared to delve deeper, but before they ascended the stairs, they found themselves confronted with an odd spectacle. In a massive breach of social convention the old man from before clambered onto the plinth of the Infinite Spring, holding a weapon in his hand. Joker stopped suddenly enough to get his friends’ attention but not create a disturbance, then tilted his head in the direction of the strange scientist. He held a finger to his hips, and when Morgana looked up confusedly, Joker picked the cat up by the head and oriented him in the right direction to see. The three skirted around into a hiding position as the man raised his gun.

“Ladies and gentlemen,” he began. “I..uh, ladies and...may I...may I have your attention? Your attention PLEASE!” With an irritated look he shot the ground with his weapon. Some kind of rocket appeared where his gun’s arc struck, making a terribly loud, fiery roar. With a few assorted yells the visitors complied, watching the weapon he waved around. “Finally! Ahem. Ladies and gentlemen, I am here today to pull off another grand heist. The theft of this Infinite Spring! You have the privilege of watching as I do it, and the curse that when you tell of it, nobody will ever believe you! Hahaha!”

Before he could get to work, the paint-splattered woman stepped forward. The scientist did not ignore the oversized paintbrush gripped in her hand. “You will not get away with this desecration of art.”

If anything, this seemed to please the strange man. “Ohoho! Going to stop me are you? The guards certainly haven’t! But you’ll have to do it without that brush of yours. Boop!” He sent forth another arc from his gun. The paintbrush slammed into the ground hard, heavier than a truckload of stone combined, fallen hard enough to break fingers. He wasted no time switching tools and shooting the woman in the facing, adhering the woman’s lips together to muffle her scream. One more adjustment and a rope suddenly connected her shoes, tripping her as she tried to run. “Quiet!” the scientist yelled. “Or I’ll make you!” One more wave of his gun silenced the other guests. Those who’d already run found the front door completely immovable, stuck to the floor as if bolted there.

Joker crouched back down, addressing the others in a low whisper. “That gun is insane. We don’t know how many more functions it has, and he’s fast. It could be even worse if he’s not toying around. We need to take him down without giving him the chance to fight.”

“You could snipe him,” Mona suggested. “Using Leena. Or we could shoot for a windburn combo.”

Shaking his head, Skull muttered, “Same problem as Kidd’s lightning. No guaranteed status. I say we all shoot him at the same time.”

As the Thieves talked strategy, the scientist started on the sculpture. He alternated between making it lighter and smaller, bit by bit, to avoid putting too much stress on and damaging the monument of gold.

Ms Fortune

Level 4 Nadia (19/40)
Location: Bottomless Sea
Blazermate's @Archmage MC, Bowser's @DracoLunaris, Ace Cadet's @Yankee, Hat Kid's @Dawnrider, Sakura's @Zoey Boey, Frog's @Dark Cloud, Mirage’s @Potemking, Mr. L’s @ModeGone
Word Count: 1173

The sea churned with abyssal horror, savage in its simplicity. Over the course of just a few moments, all who dared to stand atop the tumultuous sea full under Scylla’s attack. One heinous, long-toothed maw surfaced a little too close to Sakura and took her reactive hurricane kick to the jaw before it could prize open its mouth to snap shut on fresh meat. The experience filtered straight through to Scylla herself, arming all her limbs with knowledge on how to better fight the particular threat. None of her tentacles could make use of it, however, before the street fighter reached the one that hauled Bella up into the sky and joined her shortly thereafter.

As Sakura clambered up higher, the fish that threw themselves after her to take a bite of tasty cat tail found a stern rebuke issued from Mirage’s smoking gun as he covered her. Rika ran interference, serving as both a distraction and a painful reminder that the sea creatures had better things to do than aim high. With that taken care of, Sakura could climb in relative peace, and watch the Water Princess contend with the threat as best she could. Her leviathan tail’s teeth, shorter but a lot stouter than the eel’s, could crush them if they got purchase, but the living limb thrashed around like a thing possessed. Sakura soon reached the point where one abyssal horror ended and the other began, but for all her strength couldn’t quite get good leverage. Bella yelled to be heard above the wind. “Hit its head and stun it or something, mon cherie!” she called as the limb continued to toss and turn. “Kyah! If...if I can just concentrate for...for one second, I can get out!”

She held tight as best she could with the blood flowing to her head. When Sakura gave her the opportunity, she seized it. “Okay, now jump!” she shrieked, as power built up within the jaw of her tail. A moment later a railgun shot tore free, blasting straight out the back of the tentacle’s eel head, and Bella plummeted toward the water below. If she could have, she would have advised Sakura not to catch her or anything, given the weight of her tail, but in the heat of the moment all she could do was scream.

Down below, things remained more than a little hectic. Mirage, Link, and Nadia put in some serious work thinning out the leaping schools of nightmare fish and hungry goblin sharks, drilling them until their batteries went dry, but as ever the Cadet’s bow made quite the impression, and nothing belt out continuous fire quite like Blazermate’s sentry turret. The rescue effort looked good, but for retreat, not so much. Peach guessed that she thought that the team could disengage without attacking -and thus provoking- that little nightmare atop the rocks, but she couldn’t make any bones about it now. Thanks to Galeem’s influence, they had to finish the fight. “Okay, fine then!” she yelled, still pretty pissed, as Bowser made his way toward Scylla’s seastack. “Nadia, Ace! Leave the boat to us. You get out there and help!”

“Sure thing, P. Cat-ch you later!” With a cheeky wave weirdly juxtaposed with the fresh fish bites all across her body, Nadia flipped over the railing, then blood-dashed to work up some speed before even hitting the surface. Riding stormy waves was an altogether different beast from calm ones, but she managed to adjust quickly. The jarring transition from near-panic to relief at Bella’s rescue and especially Link’s critical save of the Atomos allowed her to go forth unburdened by the burden of worry, and she sped toward the action. With her rigging arms extended for balance, her hands were free for action, and she took a stab at any mofish that breached a little too close using her tail as a sword. “Yah! Yah! How’s this for a cut-lass?” In just a few moment’s she’d managed to rack up a whole kebab of the things, but they looked a ways past their best-by date so she flicked them off to dissolve in the surf.

Her puns came to a sudden pause when Tentalus rose from the waves, his brand new eye winking in bewilderment. Going from blind, bloody, and on death's door to fit as a fiddle out of nowhere did a number on the monster’s tiny mind, but after the heart’s lull of tranquility passed, it rose from beneath the surface in a less than friendly mood. It paused just a moment to watch Bowser water cannoning himself through the air to land about halfway up the seastack. Then an eel tentacle bit Tantalus right in its chest and twisted, provoking a roar of breathtaking rage. It slammed its weight against the rock, shaking it hard enough to fling rubble into the water and throw Bowser loose if his cannons weren’t pushing him back on.

The rest of the tentacles were just as busy. One lunged for Geralt atop his Ordnance Platform, aiming to sink its face into his chest and knock him from his high horse. Another breached and then came down on Nadia like a hammer, only for Nadia to dodge backward using the recoil of her cannon fire and then blood-dash upward. She stabbed her tail between the scales and sprinted across its breaching curl, cutting a long gash that trailing hull-blades widened. When her ride came to an end she zoomed onward. Another still snapped shut on Mirage's decoy with dizzying speed, allowing the crackshot a vision of what his fate might have been were he not so cautious.

Above everything, Scylle laughed with mad glee. Bowser’s words didn’t seem to register with her, no more than anyone else’s. Whether she understood them or not mattered little in the end. She was not an animal protecting her territory. She was a child having her fun, and a cruel child unfettered by even the slightest shadow of authority or conscience, given instead to immense power. She used it to retract two tentacles with blistering speed, battering Bowser from one side and then the other, wrenching him hard enough so that just one clawed hand remained attached. With a cackle she raised a hand, a virulent green bundle of magic swirling above her palm, and she readied the sorcery to cast Bowser into the deep.

Then Link’s plane drone let loose, peppering Scylla with miniature gunfire. She snarled as her magic went wide, flying past Bowser to strike the sea far below. At the point of impact it turned into a fifty foot magic circle on the ocean’s choppy surface, slowing anything inside it until it detonated moments later. A moment later a smaller green fireball blew the drone to pieces, but Scylla’s main body had been distracted for just a moment. In that moment two things happened: First, a big arrow came flying in out of nowhere and struck one of her tentacles a ways down, inflicting a painful poison. Second, Tentalus pounded the seastack one more, and this time there came a massive CRACK. The entire upper third of the ocean monolith slowly began to lean sideways.

On the way to Grillby’s to reconvene with Albedo, Linkle turned her attention to the festive tree at the center of town. Decked out in multicolored orbs, glittering tinsel, handcrafted ornaments of all shapes and sizes, and lights that definitely looked better at night, it encapsulated the homey, welcoming feeling that characterized Snowdin even after her violent run-in with the unyielding Stranger. That spirit of hospitality, not foreign to even a Skullgirl’s heart, warmed cold bones and spurred her to give a little herself. First she stocked up on offerings by introducing her new, papery acquaintances to her faithful cuboid traveling companion. The box devoured the money greedily the moment Linkle so much as brought it near the slot, perhaps through some sort of vacuum, and after a dramatic few moments of rattles and shakes the box burst open in a spray of colors and sounds, not without excitement but maybe a tad overdone. For all the aplomb, however, it didn’t quite compare to the sensation of opening a present made by some nameless, kind person, giving away something without the expectation of anything in return, when she opened a green-wrapped gift beneath the tree.

After that she proceeded to her destination in a businesslike manner and made straight for the titular blaze behind the counter. Grillby watched her approach, seemingly surprised to see her again as far as Linkle could tell. As Albedo implied, nobody messed with the Stranger around here. To the average villager he was a force of nature, and when he swept into town it was wise to bend with the wind, rather than break.

Regardless, his manner failed to suggest even the slightest hostility, so much so that Linkle’s apology suddenly seemed a formality, or a self-conscious quirk, rather than something she owed. “Don’t mention it,” the living flame sputtered, brushing away the property damage with a dismissive swipe of his hand. “That guy is as that guy does. Happy to see you here in one piece, if anything. Not many have poked that tiger and lived to tell the tale.”

When offered her oil, he accepted it with good graces. “Ah, you shouldn’t have. But thank you. This’ll keep the lights on for a good while.” Grillby nodded to Albedo, seated as ever by the window. The Alchemist was trying not to watch Linkle’s interaction, lest it seem like he was making a point of waiting on her. “Nice guy, that Albedo. Might not show it, but I’m sure he’s happy for someone to be alone with. Go ahead, and I’ll sling you some breakfast here in a minute or two. Just a little thanks--and congratulations.”

Albedo’s corgi ran up to Linkle as she drew near, his big eyes begging for more pets. Looking cozy in his new coat, the alchemist slid out the chair opposite him at his table with his foot, and inclined his head toward her new crossbows. “You must be quite the savvy shopper,” he told her. “New clothes, new weapons, and gifts as well. Really taking in the local customs. I hope you’re ready for all the adoration the townsfolk will shower you with if you keep this up.“ He seemed amused. “While you were out I did a little asking. The man you want to meet typically shows up in the evenings, so it may be a while. That does mean the day is open, and I may have a place we can start.”

He looked out the window into the snowy street, then at the frosty forest beyond. “I mentioned already my hypothesis that the brute has some sort of divine protection. I believe I also mentioned the period during which he was willing to let me try different things I felt might have an effect on him. All failures, but that plus his single minded obsession with finding things that might make him ‘feel’ suggests that not only does he too wish his condition was different, but that he thinks there may be something or someone out there that can.” Albedo held up his hands by way of concession. “Now, that assumes he isn’t acting out of pure desperation, which is a possibility. But since we have time to kill, I figured it wouldn’t hurt to try.”

Once again he produced his handy sketchbook, and after flipping to an early page he revealed a crude map of the area. “Not precisely measured, but a decent approximation of the surrounding terrain, I would hope. There are some spots where we could place some inquiries: a temple, a mystic’s abode, a dungeon, and a derelict hospital. Even if we do not find answers, we’ll probably come by, money, spirits, or other rewards. If you’ve a preference on where to first, I’m all ears. Or if you have an idea of your own. I’m afraid I’ve started rambling again.” The young man looked just a little sheepish, but not much.

Edge of the Blue - Atlantis Temple


Your rigging?”

Any points Sephiroth’s ostensible cooperation might have yielded were squandered, and her machinations doomed from the start, when those select few words left her lips through that viper smile. The members of the posse, all thoroughly briefed on the situation, evidenced varying degrees of contempt, but she perturbed Shantae the most. Her face was one of disgust, indignity, and despair all rolled into one vehement ball. In other words, she looked at Sephiroth like she was the scum of the earth.

The half-genie looked like she wanted to slap the swordswoman silly, but she reigned in her fury. “That was the property of Miss Scharnhorst, stolen away like the lifetime she could have shared with her grieving sister! And you’re a fool if you believe for one second we’ll let you arm yourself.” Sephiroth could practically feel the palpable resentment in the air around her now that the others were convinced she had planned to fight back.

“Well, if you’re not going to get your things...” Still as gloomy as ever, the policeman stepped away. “I’ll just help myself. They’ll fit nicely in my Bag.”

Shantae glanced at him, gave a nod, and returned her attention to Sephiroth. She gave the momentary vacationer a thin, sarcastic smile. “And yes, before you ask, we’re just fine with having you face justice in a swimsuit. You weren’t so concerned with dignity when you killed Miss. Scharnhorst.” She extended her arm, pointing toward the door. “Now march.”

“You ‘eard the lady!” Birdie bellowed, whipping his chain that dangled from his wrist against the ground at Sephiroth’s feet. The miniature metal heads at the end of his chains smashed the floor like a flail, cracking the tile. Behind her, the fishman guards kept their tridents raised, ready to thrust at a moment’s notice if the swordswoman took one step out of line.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by Dawnrider
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Dawnrider Demigod

Member Seen 11 hrs ago

Level: 7 (37 -> 38/70)
Location: Edge of the Blue - Bottomless Sea
Word Count: 485 (+1 EXP)

Hat: Default
Item: Necro Smasher (Loan)

Just before the prevailing sea demon’s fastball pitch impacted with the Atomos, smashing the windshield inward into deadly shards, Hat Kid felt herself get yanked off her feet into the protective of Bowser’s umbral likeness. The remaining crew were safe, but only for so long as their now worse-worn ship would stay aloft to allow for. She supposed this was the thanks they got (or perhaps what they had coming) for getting involved in a battle of two titanic monstrosities that might otherwise have been content to leave them alone, provided perhaps that they went unnoticed. What exactly was their plan anyway?

The ephemeral Koopa faded out, releasing her and Jr who promptly rushed the ship’s controls as the ship began to list lopsidedly. He seemed to immediately understand what was wrong (as did she), tossed her a wooden mallet, and ordered her to do something about it. She questioned not if she had the right tool for the job or how she was expected to make miracles happen with it. Her own ship was made of wood, so who could guess what similarly unorthodox processes went into its construction and maintenance. For all anyone else knew, mallet-smashing a faulty engine back into function was perfectly normal for her. Only she could speak to it, if she cared to at all.

“Aye, Aye!” she responded jovially to Jr, saluting with the hand that held the hammer, and readying her umbrella rearways with the other. Pointing her parasol outside, she opened it to catch a wind-ride out the door, carrying her to the back of the ship at speed, and just as quickly had to close it to ‘drop her sail’ so to speak. In a backward tumble she clamped a clawed handhold onto the lip of the still-functioning engine by the Hookshot tip of her umbrella, her save aided by the ship’s sudden, forced cessation with its encasing in anchoring golden light. This pause allowed her to drop down/swing over onto the damaged engine and begin going to work on it, which entailed simply wailing on the affected area haphazardly with the clumsy miracle bludgeoning tool she was lent.

The hastening glow holding the ship in place indicated to her that she didn’t have long to work, so she quickened her blows in kind to compensate and get as many hits in as she could before bailing from the engine with a dive onto/into the ship proper to brace for takeoff. It wouldn’t do for her to be thrown overboard with the airship’s resumed movement, even if it was still going down by then. Who would be on hand to fix it, then? With that said, she was perfectly fine hazarding a hotfix attempt while it was still moving before realizing she had some help stalling it out of nowhere, and would resign herself to another try, should her initial efforts prove insufficient.
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Hidden 2 mos ago Post by ZAVAZggg
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Member Seen 13 hrs ago

Level: 3 (22/30)
Word Count: 138
Location: Edge of the Blue - Atlantis Temple
EXP: +1

Sephiroth let out a quiet tsk as her plan unraveled before her eyes. It didn't matter though, as she'd find her way out of this predicament at some point. The only question was at what point in the journey, for she doubted they'd march nonstop all the way back to wherever it was she was being taken. Unless they'd brought some means of transport that is, in which case she might not get the chance nor the time to escape. It wasn't like she had much time to ponder that however, as the chain cracking the ground behind her could attest. So, wanting to avoid combat for the moment in order to formulate a better plan, Sephiroth forced herself to ignore the purple ponytailed woman's remark as she shuffled towards the door alongside the rest of the group.
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