Hidden 6 mos ago 5 mos ago
Zeroth Post
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Zeroth







You can use Flashbacks to interact in the past. Simply mark a different timeline in your post with the place and time/date, just as present posts in the main story. This allows you to complete old scenes after moving on and create engaging history between characters.

Refrain from posting music or images beside your character image. I will provide 'set pieces' and 'soundtrack', which you can simply ignore if you want to.

Early Morning (06:00-09:00 AM)
Late Morning (09:00-12:00 AM)
After Noon (12:00-15:00 PM)
Late Day (15:00-18:00 PM)
Early Evening (18:00-21:00 PM)
Late Evening (21:00-00:00 PM)
Night (00:00-03:00 AM)
Late Night (03:00-06:00 AM)







Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Prisk
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Prisk - - -

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EMILIA "GARUDA" LANGE FARHAVEN 06:00AM @Prisk
Emilia kept staring at the last message from him. Several hours had passed just fidgeting with her phone, waiting for a sign. Alas, complete silence reigned within the nearly dead circuits of the failing battery. When the brightness of the screen casting its light on her face finally gave in, she tossed the device over the edge of the rooftop. Wherever she would go in the world, the comfort of height was ever present at a slight and easy jump. In this place, Emilia could find a moment to herself and reflect on things past and to come. Somehow, he had managed to still be a craved and at the same time nauseating aspect of her life. However, this, this damned message, was so out of touch. She could not understand it, she could not understand him. The only thing she could understand was that whoever he had been to her was no more.

Was he the reason why she was here? The sleepy town of Farhaven was a humble sight just east of the much more impressive city skyline of Embergate. Before she let go of her phone for the last time, Emilia had accepted an invite—or an order, depending on who you ask—to join the third iteration of the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group. It was a special task force consisting of only Aeons, or, well, Guardians of the UDF. The prestige that came with it was one thing, but Emilia was more focused on the pay, which would definitely be an enormous help to her parents back home. She had seen some of the names that were lined up for the Group, and it certainly had some heavy hitters on it. Whatever the mission was, she hoped that distraction and confusion would not overwhelm her. This message was the last that Emilia would ever have to see from him, of that she was determined.

Emilia gathered her things, shouldered her rifle, and slipped off of the edge of the building. She landed on the street below with a thud that resonated nearby windows. The mission briefing for the new Group was going to be held at the UDF: Cetra East Command, south west of Farhaven. However, the meeting was not until the next day, so she had plenty of time on her hands and the Command Center was only four hours away by train. Emilia had spent the past two weeks at the far eastern front of Cetra, the east continent. It had been a cold and wet ordeal, far from something she would ever want to go back to, but the pay was good. The far eastern front is where the comet usually drops its first bombardment for the day. As it is now, the comet completes an orbit around the world twice a day, reaching the far eastern front early in the morning and about twelve hours later in the evening.

The streets of Farhaven at this time in the morning was like any other town. People were on their way to work, children on their way to school, and then there was all kinds of military presence. Emilia silently emerged from an alley. This day had decided to be cloudy with a light drizzle to set the mood, so she could hide underneath a comfortable hoodie without drawing attention. Her UDF issued cargo pants and boots would give her away as service personnel, but at least random soldiers would not instantly recognize her. It was a strange life, long standing duty to the UDF, yet walking on a thin line between famous and infamous. Emilia followed the flow of the sparse crowds, making her way towards the train station. It was near the end of the month, closing in on summer time, so a good chunk of Emilia's salary had already been transferred to her parents. All she had left now was just enough for a train ticket and breakfast.

There was a UDF checkpoint outside the main entrance to the train station. It was quite unavoidable to identify yourself before using any public transportation. As one would expect, the soldier who looked at Emilia's identification recognized her right away. "Oh, cool, Garuda—you go right on ahead," the soldier said and seemed moderately excited. "Thank you," Emilia smirked. Luckily, the man was a lot more reserved in his reaction than most. One could never tell how someone would react when meeting a known Aeon in person, truly a mixed bag of emotions both favorable and hostile. Some people absolutely despised everything about Aeons, spirits, and all the metaphysical stuff. They just wanted a normal, quiet life without the looming threat of being killed by some unstable, demigod maniac.

The train station had an expansive interior hall. A couple of vending machines were lined up along some of the walls, along with several rows of benches for waiting travelers. Emilia approached one of the four ticket booths and asked for a single adult, UDF command. The old lady behind the thick glass separating herself from the outside world did not seem to recognize Emilia at all. The ticket set Emilia back by a hundred and twenty Credits, which left her with about fifty for breakfast—she sighed and thought of the message from him again. Why was it living rent free in her head? Why was he living there at all? Emilia had not seen or heard from him in years, and then all of a sudden that message came out of the blue and completely without context. There was nothing before it, nothing after it. Emilia had a seat on one of the benches, waiting for the 07:30 train to arrive. But, the message kept looping back and around—again, again, again, and again. What did he mean by it?

There's something I've got to do, Mia.
Something I couldn't do while you and mom were around.


Get out of my head, idiot...


Quest Steps
You can meet/recognize Emilia at the train station and interact. Another option is to do this on the train, if your character also is in Farhaven. You could also be on your way to UDF: Cetra East Command from somewhere else on the local map. Other than this, there is not much direction seeing as this is a Prelude that allows people to start posting while waiting for others. The story will begin proper with Chapter 1.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by DeadDrop
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DeadDrop Net Runner

Member Seen 14 days ago




𝚂𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚛𝚍.

𝙰 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚗𝚝 𝚋𝚊𝚝𝚝𝚕𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚒𝚖𝚋𝚊𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚌𝚎𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚗𝚘𝚋𝚘𝚍𝚢 𝚘𝚏𝚝𝚎𝚗 𝚠𝚎𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚎𝚍 𝚘𝚗 𝚁𝚘𝚋'𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚍 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚍𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚔 𝚍𝚎𝚎𝚙𝚎𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍 𝚊𝚜𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚝𝚘𝚘, 𝚑𝚎 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚘𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚜 𝚍𝚛𝚊𝚐𝚐𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚟𝚎𝚜 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚍𝚎𝚙𝚝𝚑𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝙵𝚊𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚟𝚎𝚗. 𝙰 𝚜𝚕𝚎𝚎𝚙𝚢 𝚝𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚍𝚐𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚍𝚎𝚗𝚒𝚊𝚕, 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚘𝚗𝚕𝚢 𝚊 𝚖𝚊𝚝𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚙𝚞𝚗𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚒𝚛 𝚝𝚒𝚌𝚔𝚎𝚝. 𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚍𝚒𝚍𝚗'𝚝 𝚔𝚗𝚘𝚠 𝚒𝚝 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚗𝚍 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚗𝚎𝚊𝚛, 𝚊 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚗𝚝 𝚛𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚘𝚖𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚍𝚘𝚘𝚖 𝚑𝚒𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚒𝚗𝚗𝚎𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝙵𝚕𝚢𝚋𝚘𝚢, 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚘𝚔 𝚘𝚏𝚏 𝚠𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚕𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚜𝚖𝚎𝚕𝚕 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 '𝚍𝚎𝚠' 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝙵𝚊𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚟𝚎𝚗 𝚞𝚙𝚕𝚒𝚏𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖, 𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚘𝚜𝚝 𝚜𝚖𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚜𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜 𝚛𝚎𝚖𝚒𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚑𝚞𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚖𝚊𝚝𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚍. 𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚎𝚗𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚞𝚝 - 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚓𝚞𝚍𝚐𝚎?

𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚘𝚝𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚙𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚟𝚢, 𝚌𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚘𝚘𝚝𝚜 𝚍𝚎𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚎𝚊𝚛𝚕𝚢 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚗𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚖𝚞𝚐𝚐𝚎𝚛 𝚠𝚑𝚘'𝚍 𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚙 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚘𝚙𝚎𝚗 𝚜𝚝𝚛𝚎𝚎𝚝𝚜. 𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚗𝚘 𝚜𝚎𝚌𝚛𝚎𝚝, 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚌𝚛𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚞𝚙 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍 𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚞𝚙𝚜𝚒𝚍𝚎 𝚍𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚘𝚗 𝚒𝚝'𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚍, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚜𝚘 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚝𝚎 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚟𝚎𝚗𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗. 𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚊𝚗 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚍𝚎𝚋𝚊𝚝𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚊𝚟𝚎, 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚋𝚒𝚐𝚐𝚎𝚛 𝚋𝚘𝚘𝚐𝚎𝚢𝚖𝚊𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵 𝚘𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝙲𝚘𝚛𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗? 𝚃𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝚋𝚎𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊 𝚜𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚜𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜𝚗'𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚗𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚊𝚖𝚎, 𝚁𝚘𝚋𝚎𝚛𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊 𝚕𝚘𝚢𝚊𝚕 𝚜𝚎𝚛𝚟𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚖𝚎𝚖𝚋𝚎𝚛 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚛𝚊𝚌𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚝𝚘 𝚋𝚒𝚝𝚎 𝚞𝚙𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚏𝚎𝚍. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚒𝚡-𝚏𝚘𝚘𝚝-𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘𝚠𝚎𝚛 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚖𝚊𝚗 𝚜𝚔𝚞𝚕𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚢 𝚝𝚘𝚠𝚊𝚛𝚍𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗, 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎 𝚘𝚋𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚌𝚕𝚎𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚢 𝚒𝚝 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚍𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚐. 𝙾𝚗𝚎 𝚒𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚞𝚗𝚒𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚖, 𝚊 𝚜𝚕𝚎𝚎𝚔 𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚖-𝚏𝚒𝚝𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚘𝚖𝚋𝚎𝚛 𝚓𝚊𝚌𝚔𝚎𝚝 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚝𝚊𝚋𝚕𝚎 𝚙𝚊𝚒𝚛 𝚘𝚏 𝚙𝚊𝚗𝚝𝚜 𝚖𝚊𝚍𝚎 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚕𝚘𝚘𝚔 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚎𝚘𝚙𝚕𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚒𝚗𝚑𝚊𝚋𝚒𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝙵𝚊𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚟𝚎𝚗 - 𝚙𝚎𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚙𝚜 𝚊𝚋 𝚒𝚝 𝚛𝚒𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚛, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚗𝚘𝚗𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚕𝚎𝚜𝚜 𝚌𝚒𝚟𝚒𝚕𝚒𝚊𝚗.

𝚃𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚋𝚎𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚜𝚝𝚘𝚙𝚙𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚌𝚔𝚙𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚝, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚟𝚎𝚛𝚒𝚏𝚒𝚌𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚘𝚏 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝙸𝙳 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚠𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚊 𝚖𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗 𝚊𝚖𝚘𝚗𝚐𝚜𝚝 𝚊 𝚌𝚛𝚘𝚠𝚍 𝚘𝚏 𝚜𝚘𝚕𝚍𝚒𝚎𝚛𝚜. 𝙷𝚎 𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚗𝚝𝚞𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚖𝚊𝚍𝚎 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚢 𝚙𝚊𝚜𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚌𝚔𝚙𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚝 𝚊𝚏𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚋𝚎𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚌𝚕𝚎𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚍, 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚕𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚎𝚛𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚑𝚞𝚗𝚐𝚎𝚛 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚗𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚌𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚍 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚍𝚎𝚌𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚕𝚞𝚗𝚌𝚑 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝙲𝚎𝚝𝚛𝚊 𝙲𝚘𝚖𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝙶𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚙-𝚠𝚑𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛, 𝚑𝚎𝚕𝚕 𝚒𝚝 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚝𝚑 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚒𝚍𝚎 𝚊𝚗𝚢𝚠𝚊𝚢. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚍𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚛𝚒𝚍𝚎 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍𝚗'𝚝 𝚋𝚎 𝚜𝚗𝚞𝚏𝚏𝚎𝚍 𝚘𝚞𝚝, 𝚒𝚗𝚏𝚊𝚌𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚊𝚝𝚌𝚑 𝚝𝚘 𝚒𝚐𝚗𝚒𝚝𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚒𝚛𝚎 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚖 𝚘𝚏 𝙶𝚊𝚛𝚞𝚍𝚊. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚊𝚖𝚘𝚞𝚜 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗 𝚍𝚎𝚙𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚜 𝚘𝚗 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚢𝚘𝚞 𝚊𝚜𝚔 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚠𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚁𝚘𝚋𝚎𝚛𝚝 𝚊𝚕𝚠𝚊𝚢𝚜 𝚜𝚊𝚠 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚜𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚠𝚊𝚜, 𝚋𝚎𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝚐𝚞𝚒𝚜𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊 𝚑𝚊𝚛𝚍 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐-𝚏𝚊𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚢 𝚠𝚘𝚖𝚊𝚗. 𝙰 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚖𝚘𝚍𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍 𝚐𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚎𝚕𝚕, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 -

𝚆𝚑𝚘 𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚠𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚓𝚞𝚍𝚐𝚎?

"𝙶𝚊𝚛𝚞𝚍𝚊, 𝙸 𝚌𝚊𝚗 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚕𝚕 𝚜𝚎𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚎𝚊𝚐𝚕𝚎 𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚢𝚘𝚞𝚛𝚜 - 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚒𝚜𝚗'𝚝 𝚋𝚕𝚘𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚢𝚎𝚝~?"

𝙷𝚎 𝚐𝚊𝚟𝚎 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚊 𝚠𝚊𝚛𝚖 𝚜𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚎, 𝚝𝚊𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚊 𝚟𝚊𝚗𝚒𝚕𝚕𝚊 𝚌𝚒𝚐𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚝𝚝𝚎 𝚑𝚎'𝚍 𝚜𝚗𝚊𝚙 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚎𝚛𝚜 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚞𝚖𝚖𝚘𝚗 𝚊𝚗 𝚘𝚍𝚍 𝚌𝚘𝚕𝚘𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚏𝚒𝚛𝚎 𝚊𝚕𝚖𝚘𝚜𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚢𝚎𝚕𝚕𝚘𝚠 𝚐𝚛𝚎𝚎𝚗 𝚑𝚞𝚎. 𝙷𝚎'𝚍 𝚕𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚊𝚗𝚌𝚎𝚛-𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚌𝚔, 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚎𝚡𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚗𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚊𝚏𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚊 𝚚𝚞𝚒𝚌𝚔 𝚙𝚞𝚏𝚏.

"𝙲𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚓𝚘𝚒𝚗 𝚖𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚊 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚝?"

𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚝𝚠𝚘 𝚝𝚢𝚙𝚎𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚙𝚎𝚘𝚙𝚕𝚎 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍, 𝚙𝚎𝚘𝚙𝚕𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚋𝚞𝚢 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚒𝚌𝚔𝚎𝚝𝚜 - 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚍𝚘𝚗'𝚝.

𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚕𝚕 𝚖𝚘𝚟𝚎𝚍, 𝚜𝚕𝚘𝚠𝚕𝚢 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚙𝚎𝚘𝚙𝚕𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚐𝚎𝚝 𝚠𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚗𝚎𝚎𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚐𝚘 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚛𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗𝚜 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚕𝚕 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚏𝚒𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚘𝚏𝚏 𝚒𝚝 𝚊𝚕𝚕

𝙸𝚜𝚗'𝚝 𝚒𝚝 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 - 𝚏𝚞𝚗𝚗𝚢?

𝙰𝚕𝚕 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚕𝚎, 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚗𝚎𝚎𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚐𝚎𝚝 𝚘𝚗 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚙𝚞𝚕𝚕𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚛𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚘𝚗 𝚌𝚞𝚎.

𝙰𝚕𝚕 𝚊𝚌𝚌𝚘𝚛𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚙𝚕𝚊𝚗.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Salsa Verde
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Salsa Verde 起死回生

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EUN-JI "AMANITA" PARK FARHAVEN 06:00AM @Salsa Verde
The sound of bleats from goats and the rhythmic whips of cow tails swatting away pesky flies awoke the young Amanita from her sleep. Sprouting like the fruiting body of a mushroom she stretched out her arms and legs, bellowing out a mighty deep yawn. She wasn’t in her bed though, instead she was in the barn house surrounded by hay and chickens. The other hens looked at her wondering why an overgrown chicken was taking up prime real estate for midday activities. That’s when her name rang through the air from a familiar voice. ”엄마” she shouted with a tinge of excitement. She ran from the barn into her house, oddly forgetting she had no shoes on when she felt the soil squish under her feet. ”Why don’t you come sit next to me and help me prepare 떡볶이 for your father when he returns from the market, you know it’s his favorite.”

The herbs and spices had all been laid out on the table each in its own little bowl of varying size ready to be mixed into the bowl of rice cakes. Her excitement rose, but when she went to exclaim her excitement not a voice but an alarm blared out of her mouth. Confused she closed her mouth and tried again, but still an alarm. The alarm grew louder and louder yet her mom looked unbothered by the sound, it wasn’t until her body jolted awake that she realized she had been dreaming again. This time she had passed out on her desk, coffee still in her cold iron grip already ice cold, on top of papers that stuck to her face thanks to her famous trail of drool. “씨발!” She cursed under her breath, the dreams were reoccurring more and more. Maybe it was her mind reeling in guilt for not having visited them since the comet with her being an Aeon and devoting her life to her studies.

Luckily for her, the mountains protected them as they did before and the lands that far out maybe got a shallow piece of debris from the comet. It wasn’t like she could call them knowing they had no landline nor cellphone. And she took solace in knowing they were still alive seeing as they still received her money. Not like they needed it, their works was worth more knowing machines had almost completely overtaken human labor cutting the cost and quality of material. She would have to visit soon, maybe after this UDF meeting that she had been avoiding and letting the details in voicemails and emails pile up. Either way she chugged down her coffee as rancid as it seemed and went to work on making herself presentable. Unlike Cinderella, she had no radiant voice or critters to help her get ready.

On her way out the sticky note her past self left on her door said ”Fairhaven UDF meeting?”, must have been the one thing she gathered from the mass notifications from the UDF. Once out the door she headed for the nearest station. Arrowpeak. She didn’t settle in once place she had always been on the move, what with all her work being in the same breath as the fungi infecting people, it made her particularly disliked by the common populace. She had residence in Arrowpeak, Farhaven, Duskmire, it was a wonder how she had money at all, but that was government stipends for research were for. She managed to slip past the UDF guards at the checkpoint without much hassle, she was a researcher so she was barely on the frontlines and not a name of too much merit like lets say Garuda, so her lack of fame helped her in more ways than one.

She turned on her phone waiting for the peach emblem to turn to her Home Screen. Headphones in ears she sat comfortably in her train car looking at the sign with the next stop being Farhaven. Her Lockscreen had been a photo of her accepting some award which quickly was overshadowed by more emails and voicemails. Her eyes scanned the sentences “씨발!” she said mentally this time. She was to join the third iteration of the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group? At the Cetra East Command? Perhaps if she read them earlier she could have declined or made up some nary excuse, but she was locked in at this point. She swiped to the names of her squadron, most of them did not ring a bell mostly due to her caring less about the boys with egos and their guns. Belladonna stuck out to her as someone of high interest seeing as she was a fellow researcher, but there were some dark rumors about her floating around, but she would have to see for herself.

The station stopped at Farhaven and a conversation broke out on the train in the background. The last name she saw was none other than Garuda. She giggled to herself before peeking her head out to noisily see who was talking, speak of the devil it was the bird queen herself and some…guy? She wondered if she should go speak to them, but she was better off not trying to make any friends right now. Her phones had other plans, uncharacteristic for her hands, she allowed her phone to slip right into the aisle and rolling down between the two conversing, probably about this prolific team up.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Aeolian
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Aeolian Proud Fujoshi

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ISOLDE "BELLADONNA" FEATHERSWALLOW UDF: Cetra East Command Early Morning @Aeolian


This world was unfair--Dr. Featherswallow knew it to be so more than anyone else, and yet, she relished in the privilege that her upbringing had afforded her over the years. While the common man suffered under the threat of the comet, the tyranny of the UDF, and the fear of every rogue faction that sought to take advantage of a new age, Isolde would have none of it. She lived her glamorous, luxurious life up in the highest penthouse towers. Rather than fighter jets, she leisured in expensive balloon rides only the beau monde and aristocracy could afford. Just because children were suffering, should that mean she cannot indulge in the greatest delicacies their world had to offer? Not on her time. And remorseless she would remain.

But this dowager was not all diamonds and petticoats. Dr. Featherswallow was one of the most brilliant minds of the Comet Era. Her research for a cure was well-known and she had the explicit public and financial backing of the UDF to do whatever it took to succeed.

To hell and back, if necessary.

However, a recent op-ed about her in the latest issue of The Emberletter, did not speak very kindly of her. This was not the first opinion piece made about her by some washed-up journalist. She was well aware of the "rumors", but Dr. Featherswallow would neither confirm nor deny them. In a way, she quite enjoyed the theatrics of it all.

THE EMBERLETTER HEADLINES

~ The mysterious doctor who killed her spouses and pocketed the gold. Whose next to feel her wraith? ~

~ Child Murderer or Revolutionary? ~

~ Dr. Isolde Featherswallow is a blemish on the aristocracy and in the field of global research! She must be brought to answer for her transgressions in the name of humanity!
~


The latest issue gave rise to an amused chuckle as she read it. More of the same, it would seem. Dr. Featherswallow handed it to an assistant and then entered a room full of white tiles, a table, a single one-way window, and two chairs on opposite sides facing one another.

The summoning of Aeons for another iteration of the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group was well on her mind as she entered the room, no doubt. She arrived early to the CEC, days before in fact, to continue her work in a sublevel area of the compound that only special UDF officials and researchers and personnel could access. Very few could access some of the wings that she was afforded. But alas, she would contend with that special calling of Aeons when the time came, when they arrived.

For now, she slide into a white chair and faced the young man who was locked into the seat in front of her. Isolde pushed up her eyeglasses and began rifling through the file laid out before her, not looking up as she spoke, "My name is Dr. Featherswallow, though you may call me Isolde if you'd like...but you may also..."

"Garpute!" the man cursed at her.

Isolde looked up from the papers and clasped her fingers together, resting her chin on her enlaced hands. She smiled at the man, "Sure. I'm quite liberal." she jested.

"Now..." her face suddenly became severe and the young man tensed at the jarring switch, "Mr. Crawley, I see here in your file that you are the son of a locksmith, an excellent pickpocketer, a street magician...my oh my..."

Isolde's face lit up with glee.

"and...." she paused for a moment, letting the air get sticky with a heavy silence, "an abuser of the vilest sort." Isolde shook her head knowingly. "Do you know why you're here Mr. Crawley?"

Mr. Crawley, wearing nothing but dingey garments and a holey cap, remained silent, only fidgeting every so often. Isolde locked her gaze with him briefly, feeling the resistance he was putting up against her. She continued unperturbed, "Well, my dear, the UDF has chosen you as a subject for Experiment PanX 5." Isolde took note of the change in his countenance, the mention of that experiment bringing a tangible fear to his eyes. She in turn, softened her gaze. "I see. So you know of it. Dearest, do not fret. The role you must play now is for the greater good. Henceforth, all your sins have been forgiven by the UDF. But of your gods..." she paused for dramatic effect "...well, I cannot say."

At last, Mr. Crawley spoke. His voice was horsed as if he hadn't drank water in days. "What about your sins?"

Isolde lifted an eyebrow, curious, "What about them?"

"You've heard the rumors." Mr. Crawley continued, "You kill people. You even killed your child. A fucking Daemon Garpute if I ever laid eyes on one." he snarled, "You'll burn in the fiery pits."

Isolde looked at the man with a sympathetic frown, "Oh you poor thing. Maybe so. But you've got front row seats haven't you? I'll see you there." And with that last remark, she stood up, picked up his file, and started for the door. Mr. Crawley's face burned with anger and with a crack, he wretched his arms up and broke free from the locks holding him in place. Reeling his head back, he stuffed a cybernetic arm down his throat and then pulled out something sharp-some kind of shiv or makeshift sword; one of his street magic tricks. Isolde turned around calmly to face the armed and desperately raging Mr. Crawley.

She remained unphased, holding her clasped hands in front of her as though waiting for the next train. Mr. Crawley, moved closer to her in slow uncertain steps. "Mr. Crawley you really ought to have a seat. I insist." He wasn't listening, of course, he continued to inch closer to Isolde. "Daemon Garpute!" he yelled.

On the opposite side of the one-way window was Dr. Featherswallow's assistant (who at the time, had been taking notes). Over the intercom in the room, Isolde could sense the urgency and fear in the assistant's voice.

OVER THE INTERCOM
"Dr. Featherswallow! Are you okay? Should I call for Marcus or The Neutralizers? I know you told me not to, under no circumstances. But..."


"No." Isolde said to her assistant, her gaze still locked on Mr. Crawley.

OVER THE INTERCOM
"Okay. Understood Doctor."


"I aint no man's experiment." Mr. Crawley bellowed in anger. "You'll go down with me!"

Isolde shook her head, knowingly. "I'm afraid not my dear."

A sudden ghostly chill filled the room. It was as though the room began to fade, or maybe the overhead lights malfunctioned. Mr. Crawley would never know for certain. Where Dr. Featherswallow once stood was a blackened silhouette, like a shadow detached from its maker. Belladonna.

"Fuck fuck fuck fuck fuck! A fucking Aeon!"

The darkness slowly crept through the room, enveloping everything in its path as Mr. Crawley dropped his weapon and backed towards the corner. Enraptured with such fear, he soiled himself. This creeping darkness was not like that of the night. It was...otherworldly, a void of nothingness. Belladonna's voice echoed like an apparition in the darkness, from within Mr. Crawley could not say where.

"Of all the rumors, this is truest of all. Goodnight, Mr. Crawley."

Fear constricted his lungs. He gasped for air desperately, and with one final breath, as though sinking within an abyss, disappeared into the darkness.



L O R E

- The Emberletter is the most recognized news outlet in Embergate. Its influence is quite far-reaching, with citizens in nearby cities like Farhaven, Bellfort, and Greenmore reading it as well.

- Garpute is equivalent to bitch. A Daemon Garpute is a harsher version.

- The Comet Era is what some people call the current time period since the comet arrived.

- Experiment PanX 5 is the experiment that Dr. Featherswallow began five years ago to find a cure for the comet infection. It is fully funded by the UDF and some corporations that want a piece of the pie once it's ready. Pan is short for Panacea, X represents new subjects, and 5 means this is the fifth iteration/trial of the experiment. The UDF forcefully and inhumanely uses criminals as test subjects for the experiment. The worse the crime, the more likely that person is to be chosen. Isolde likes to interview test subjects prior to the experiment, for her own reasons.

- The Neutralizers are like a more advanced version of law enforcement who keep UDF facilities secure and neutralize any threats to UDF employees, visitors, partners, or personnel.

Note: (As a higher-up, Isolde ordered The Neutralizers not to be in the room while she was working, for her own reasons.)
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Prisk
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Prisk - - -

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EMILIA "GARUDA" LANGE FARHAVEN [Train Station] 07:15AM @DeadDrop @Salsa Verde
Emilia became distracted by her musings, yet again. The world around her became slightly blurred out, as if the wellness of her eyes had begun to fail already. The only way forward was to ignore his stupid message. For a brief moment, Emilia regretted tossing her phone away—it was no longer possible to wallow in pity and taste her own tears late at night. It sounded poetic in her head, but the reality of it was utmost pathetic. The regret quickly turned into anger, and then apathy. He, that old flame, was the only one who could put her off balance like this. Surely, it was a product of youth that had caught mold after all these years, yet refused to go away when she scraped at it. Emilia audibly scuffed at it all, almost chuckled at how dumb she felt.

A change of heart came when familiarity approached. Never in a million years would Emilia have expected to meet the Navigation Division's poster boy in this humble place. Nav-Command were certainly in love with this guy, and for good reason. Being a Jet Fighter was as heavy duty and 'cool' as one could get in the UDF. Aeons barely measured up to these men and women in the sky that rained death from above. And then, there was this guy, Robert Hernandez, who had managed to be part of both things that resulted in fame—a jet fighter Aeon. It was quite insane when one thought about it, even Emilia could not help herself but to feel like a fan. The nature of it all was that some Aeon were simply more 'famous' than others, even if all of them were somewhat known. Emilia herself had dedicated plenty of time to Warfare Division PR campaigns and, well, 'commercials', which she was not entirely proud of, but it certainly paid well.

"No fucking way," Emilia smiled, stood up from her seat and gave the man a hug. She was a bit taken back by the surprise. Everything he did, lighting that cigarette with that jacket around his shoulders, was vividly cinematic. She had met Robert a couple of times before. It was not a super intricate friendship, but well beyond the typical acquaintance you would meet once a year at someone's house party. And, of course, they knew each other by being in some manner of limelight all the time—sometimes it was almost impossible to not know someone. "Yeah, sure, absolutely—I'm guessing you're on for the Group? I saw your name on the list earlier. Half didn't expect you to show up, though," Emilia said while the arriving train was being announced in the train station speakers. She grabbed her backpack and rifle that were resting on the bench were she had taken a moment. The two began to walk towards the train platforms, but not in an awful hurry, as the train would remain at the station for about fifteen minutes.

"You know, I think I saw you at the Watford base a couple of weeks ago, but I didn't get a chance to say hello. They were shipping us out to the Eastern Front so fast that everything sort of happened in a hurry." The two conversed while stepping onto the train that had just cleared out of the passengers that were due Farhaven. The train would continue on for a few stops, the UDF eastern command included, and finally arrive at Embergate as its final stop. More people boarded the train alongside Emilia and Robert. They were most likely commuters that worked a stop or two outside of Farhaven, perhaps even in the big city—quite a distance for commuting. That is how things were, though. One had to break a sweat and go outside the comfort zone to earn a living in this world, even if it meant sacrificing several hours a day to traveling to and from work. This was the case for Emilia and most Aeon, as well. She figured that she spent more time on traveling than actually fighting the 'stiggies', as she called them—the monsters that resulted from Stigma infection. What a sad life it was, yet necessary.

The train car that they boarded was one of them with fancy booths. A narrow corridor led them towards the regular cars with two or three seats per row. They did not get far before someone's phone came tumbling across the hardened floor between their feet. "Oh," Emilia exhaled and was caught by the attention of that moment. She did not hesitate to pick the device up and turn around to look for whomever had dropped it—and there the girl was. She looked like someone from one of the western neighbors to Emilia's home country. It was not entirely uncommon to see people from Goryeo farming or selling things in Votara, enough to warrant Emilia knowing some of their words. "Is this yours?" Emilia said with a smirk while taking a few hesitant steps towards the somewhat-stranger. That was the issue, somewhat. It felt as if Emilia had met this person before or maybe seen her somewhere, but when and where was completely elusive. The girl had a wonderful, yet subtle expression of excitement, elation, or perhaps even expectation. There was a brief silence, as they kept staring at each other. Emilia's smile grew as she waited for an answer—"Have we met?" She asked.

The train ruffled and rumbled as it slowly began to take off. The doors hissed shut and a loud whistle could be heard from outside the train. The morning drizzled had moved on to proper rain. Things began to move forward, just as whatever this whole adventure would be. Emilia felt a bit anxious or maybe timorous about taking on the Group. An ominous divination kept making itself known in her head, and it had something to do with that last message from him.

Quest Steps
Interaction between Emilia, Robert, and Eun-Ji on the train bound for UDF: Cetra East Command—this is where Chapter 1 will begin when everyone is ready. Those who want to participate in this Prelude can be anywhere they want on the local map, even at the UDF command center, where Isolde already is present.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Salsa Verde
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Salsa Verde 起死回生

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EUN-JI "AMANITA" PARK FARHAVEN [Train Station] 07:15AM @Prisk@DeadDrop
Her hands seized up while her face contorted into an expression of nothing but pure cringe. How could she have let go of her phone? She was better than that and she knew she was better than that. Perhaps it was the dream that still had possession over her mind or even a token of the divine, which she more or less shelved as fanaticism as science was the only true deity that governed their world. Still some people would lead you to believe that the worlds sins procreated this world of Aeons and Stigma’s, yet they didn’t treat Aeons like the archangels they so desperately worshiped. Anyways, before she let her mind slip away into another tangent she had to damage control the situation perspiring. It was way to late to attempt to fumble and catch the phone, having Garuda already taken notice.

This only after her reaction to the James Dean type man became a bit more fan girly than she thought. ”Just who is this guy? I know let me just moogle the names on the file one more time” reveling in her brilliance only to realize that she had nothing to moogle him with. The hug solidified that he wasn’t just an average joe, probably one of the Aeons with a more braggadocious nickname for their operator.

Eun-ji rose from her seat and skirted to the aisle with poise and grace despite her lack there of that put her into her current situation. She tugged on her cream colored cardigan and straightened out her high waisted gray skirt. With one hand she brushed a loose strand of hair behind her ear before taking her phone back and bowing a short bit out of her custom for respect. “Yes, it is. I’m sorry I’m normally not so clumsy. Trouble sleeping I guess with everything going on, you know?” A small giggle and a tooth wide smile etched on her face; she was having trouble sleeping but not because of the mission. Tucking her phone back into her satchel that hung on a gold chain from some designer brand emblem she couldn’t remember the name of. Eun-ji’s demeanor quickly shifted when she felt that Garuda was drawing closer, she wasn’t a threat, well she was, but it was more instinct than purposeful.

Their eye lines met and lingered with direct contact for what felt like hours, seemingly searching for where they’ve seen each other before, if they ever interacted, or what spirits were drawing the two together. The silence finally broke with a smile and a question, “Oh, well yes and no. I’m mostly tucked away in the research division when I’m working, you know how they are, never get tired of keeping you busy and out of sight. You might have seen me around Farhaven or around the shopping centre, although I’m not sure how much R&R they give you or how much of it you actually take, being a solider and the Garuda after all.” Another coy laugh deflecting off her childlike wish for an autograph.

“I do feel like i’ve seen you somewhere, if I had to guess you’re from Votara?” Her eyes lingering for a moment. She had the look of the people who were just one block of land away from her homeland. As well adapted as she was for social interactions, assumptions based on appearances were always a slippery slope, especially in her own regards. “Oh! Where are my manners?! I’m Eun-Ji Park, but you might know me better by the name on the piece of paper from the UDF that says Amanita” she extended her hand out in anticipation of a handshake hoping her hands were neither too cold from Raynaud’s or too sweaty from nervousness. “I’m sorry I just started spouting off words without introducing myself first.”

After the handshake she would gesture her free hand to block her mouth as she whispered ”And who is he” tilting her head towards the cool hand to her left despite being completely obvious to him, clearly why she was in the research division and not the warfare division.



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𝚆𝚒𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝, 𝚒𝚝 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚝 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚜𝚕𝚘𝚠𝚎𝚍 𝚍𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚊𝚜 𝚁𝚘𝚋𝚎𝚛𝚝 𝚒𝚗𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚋𝚘𝚗𝚎. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚛𝚒𝚜𝚙 𝚎𝚗𝚍 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚝𝚎 𝚌𝚒𝚐𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚝𝚝𝚎 𝚊𝚜𝚑𝚎𝚍 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚒𝚗𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚊 𝚙𝚕𝚞𝚖𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚜𝚖𝚘𝚔𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚌𝚑 𝚎𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚋𝚘𝚍𝚢 𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚚𝚞𝚒𝚌𝚔𝚕𝚢 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚢𝚎𝚍 𝙴𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚒𝚊. 𝙷𝚒𝚜 𝚎𝚢𝚎𝚜 𝚕𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚞𝚙 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚊 𝚐𝚕𝚘𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚘𝚏 𝚢𝚎𝚕𝚕𝚘𝚠 𝚜𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚜𝚞𝚖𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚊𝚜𝚑𝚢 𝚜𝚖𝚘𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚓𝚞𝚖𝚙𝚎𝚍 𝚒𝚗𝚜𝚒𝚍𝚎. 𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚏𝚎𝚎𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊 𝚏𝚒𝚜𝚑 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢, 𝚍𝚛𝚘𝚙 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎 𝚏𝚒𝚜𝚑 𝚏𝚘𝚘𝚍 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢'𝚕𝚕 𝚙𝚕𝚞𝚌𝚔 𝚒𝚝 𝚞𝚙. 𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚗𝚘𝚠 𝚎𝚡𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚜𝚖𝚘𝚔𝚎, 𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚐𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚘𝚘𝚗 𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚝 𝚌𝚊𝚖𝚎. 𝙷𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚞𝚛𝚙𝚛𝚒𝚜𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚢 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍𝚜-𝚘𝚗 𝚑𝚞𝚐 𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚌𝚎𝚒𝚟𝚎𝚍 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚊𝚌𝚔𝚗𝚘𝚠𝚕𝚎𝚍𝚐𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚕𝚘𝚠 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗 𝚒𝚗 𝚙𝚞𝚋𝚕𝚒𝚌, 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚊 𝚜𝚒𝚐𝚗 𝚘𝚏 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚛𝚊𝚍𝚎𝚛𝚢 𝚒𝚏 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚘𝚗𝚕𝚢 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚜𝚒𝚖𝚙𝚕𝚎. 𝙰 𝚋𝚒𝚐 𝙷𝚎𝚛𝚗𝚊𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚣 𝚊𝚛𝚖 𝚠𝚛𝚊𝚙𝚙𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚝𝚘 𝚐𝚒𝚟𝚎 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚑𝚎𝚕𝚕𝚘-𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜-𝚊-𝚑𝚞𝚐 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚎𝚛. 𝙸𝚏 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍𝚜 𝚍𝚒𝚍 𝚏𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚟𝚎𝚜 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚒𝚜𝚝, 𝚜𝚑𝚎'𝚍 𝚗𝚘𝚝𝚒𝚌𝚎 𝚘𝚛 𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚏𝚎𝚎𝚕 𝚊 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍𝚕𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚙𝚒𝚜𝚝𝚘𝚕 𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚖𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔.

𝚂𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎𝚜 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚝𝚎𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚏𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚒𝚗 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚖𝚞𝚗𝚍𝚊𝚗𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚖𝚜.

𝙷𝚒𝚜 𝚘𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚔𝚎𝚙𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚋𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚖𝚘𝚞𝚝𝚑, 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚋𝚊𝚍 𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚗𝚎𝚛𝚜 𝚝𝚘 𝚋𝚞𝚛𝚗 𝚊 𝚏𝚛𝚒𝚎𝚗𝚍 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚑𝚞𝚐 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚜𝚞𝚌𝚑 𝚊 𝚏𝚒𝚛𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚌𝚔. 𝙷𝚒𝚜 𝚊𝚛𝚖 𝚕𝚎𝚝 𝚐𝚘 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚜, 𝚎𝚖𝚘𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚝 𝚛𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚒𝚗 𝚜𝚞𝚌𝚑 𝚊 𝚋𝚕𝚎𝚊𝚔 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍. 𝙷𝚎 𝚜𝚖𝚒𝚛𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚕𝚘𝚘𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚍𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚖𝚊𝚗, 𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚕𝚘𝚠 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚎𝚢𝚎𝚜 𝚏𝚊𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚏𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚊 𝚖𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚊𝚝𝚝𝚘𝚘 𝚞𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚛 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚘𝚟𝚎𝚛 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚕𝚎𝚏𝚝 𝚎𝚢𝚎 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚝 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚕𝚘𝚘𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚍𝚞𝚕𝚕 𝚊𝚜 𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛, 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚊 𝚋𝚒𝚛𝚝𝚑 𝚖𝚊𝚛𝚔 𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚜𝚜𝚘𝚌𝚒𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚙𝚒𝚛𝚒𝚝𝚜 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗 𝚑𝚒𝚖. 𝚆𝚒𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕 𝚞𝚜𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚙𝚘𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚜 𝚒𝚝 𝚍𝚒𝚍𝚗'𝚝 𝚕𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚞𝚙, 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚊 𝚌𝚘𝚘𝚕 𝚙𝚊𝚛𝚝𝚢 𝚝𝚛𝚒𝚌𝚔 𝚒𝚏 𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊 𝚜𝚝𝚘𝚛𝚢 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚊𝚗𝚘𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚍𝚊𝚢.

"𝚈𝚎𝚊𝚑 - 𝙶𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚎𝚎 𝚢𝚘𝚞, 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚝 𝚌𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚛𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚖𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚎 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚓𝚎𝚌𝚝. 𝙸'𝚖 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛 𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚜 𝚊𝚗𝚢𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐. 𝚃𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚋𝚎𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚜𝚊𝚒𝚍, 𝚒𝚝'𝚜 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚋𝚊𝚋𝚕𝚢 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚊𝚍. 𝚁𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚋𝚊𝚍, 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚝𝚘 𝚙𝚞𝚝 𝚊 𝚍𝚊𝚖𝚙𝚎𝚛 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚘𝚘𝚍 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚛 𝚒𝚜𝚗'𝚝 𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚜𝚘𝚘𝚗." 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚙𝚊𝚠𝚗𝚜 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵, 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗𝚜 𝚞𝚜𝚎𝚍 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚝𝚘 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚛𝚘𝚕 𝚙𝚘𝚠𝚎𝚛. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚋𝚒𝚐𝚐𝚎𝚜𝚝 𝚌𝚘𝚛𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚙𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚜𝚔𝚞𝚕𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚍𝚐𝚎𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚋𝚎𝚊𝚞𝚝𝚒𝚏𝚞𝚕 𝚙𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚎𝚝. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚒𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗'𝚜 𝚊𝚋𝚒𝚕𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚝𝚘 𝚋𝚎 𝚞𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚛𝚜𝚝𝚘𝚘𝚍, 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚊𝚋𝚛𝚞𝚙𝚝𝚕𝚢 𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑. 𝙷𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍𝚗'𝚝 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚜𝚊𝚢 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚎𝚛, 𝚊 𝚌𝚞𝚕𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚎 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚌𝚔 𝚎𝚜𝚙𝚎𝚌𝚒𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚞𝚗𝚒𝚗𝚟𝚒𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚜𝚘𝚞𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚊𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗.

"𝚆𝚊𝚝𝚜𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚍, 𝚢𝚎𝚊𝚑. 𝙸𝚝 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚝 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚜𝚘 𝚕𝚘𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚐𝚘, 𝙸 𝚛𝚎𝚖𝚎𝚖𝚋𝚎𝚛 𝚢𝚘𝚞 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚘𝚘𝚣𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚏𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚢 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚠𝚑𝚎𝚗 𝚢𝚘𝚞 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚍𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐.. 𝚈'𝚔𝚗𝚘𝚠." 𝙷𝚎 𝚖𝚊𝚍𝚎 𝚊 𝚐𝚎𝚜𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚎, 𝚜𝚠𝚒𝚙𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚗𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚊𝚟𝚘𝚒𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚜𝚙𝚎𝚊𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝙰𝚎𝚘𝚗'𝚜 𝚗𝚊𝚖𝚎. 𝙿𝚎𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚙𝚜 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚙𝚎𝚌𝚝 𝚝𝚘 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚋𝚛𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚞𝚙 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚗𝚊𝚖𝚎, 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍𝚜 𝚕𝚘𝚘𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚏𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚑 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚛𝚊𝚠 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚕𝚕. "𝙸 𝚊𝚕𝚠𝚊𝚢𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚢𝚘𝚞 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚏𝚊𝚖𝚘𝚞𝚜 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝, 𝚑𝚎𝚕𝚕 𝙸'𝚍 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚊𝚟𝚎 𝚎𝚊𝚐𝚕𝚎 𝚠𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚜. 𝚃𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝙸'𝚖 𝚜𝚞𝚛𝚎 𝚢𝚘𝚞'𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚊 𝚐𝚘𝚘𝚍 𝚙𝚒𝚕𝚘𝚝, 𝚢𝚘𝚞'𝚍 𝚗𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛 𝚗𝚎𝚎𝚍 𝚊 𝚙𝚊𝚛𝚊𝚌𝚑𝚞𝚝𝚎." 𝙷𝚎'𝚍 𝚐𝚒𝚟𝚎 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚊 𝚠𝚊𝚛𝚖 𝚜𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚎 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚋𝚘𝚊𝚛𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚑𝚎𝚛, 𝚒𝚝 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚝 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚐𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚋𝚎 𝚊 𝚕𝚘𝚗𝚐 𝚛𝚒𝚍𝚎.

𝚃𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑, 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚜 𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚏𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚏𝚞𝚕 𝚍𝚊𝚢 𝚊𝚝 𝚆𝚊𝚝𝚜𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚍.




𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊𝚗 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘𝚡𝚒𝚌𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚝𝚑 𝚘𝚏 𝚏𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚑 𝚊𝚒𝚛, 𝚋𝚞𝚖𝚙𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚊𝚝 𝚜𝚞𝚌𝚑 𝚊 𝚖𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚛𝚞𝚜𝚑 𝚠𝚎𝚕𝚕. 𝙾𝚗𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚞𝚜𝚞𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚜𝚊𝚢 𝚑𝚒, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚊𝚕𝚊𝚛𝚖𝚜 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚋𝚕𝚊𝚛𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚛𝚞𝚗𝚗𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚒𝚗 𝚍𝚒𝚏𝚏𝚎𝚛𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚍𝚒𝚛𝚎𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗𝚜. 𝙶𝚊𝚛𝚞𝚍𝚊, 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚛𝚞𝚜𝚑 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚘𝚙𝚙𝚘𝚜𝚒𝚝𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚢 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚊𝚒𝚛𝚙𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚎𝚜, 𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚁𝚘𝚋𝚎𝚛𝚝 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚍𝚘 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚐𝚒𝚟𝚎 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚊 𝚗𝚘𝚍 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚊 𝚜𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚎 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚗𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚍 𝚘𝚏𝚏 𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚓𝚎𝚝. 𝙷𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚙𝚒𝚕𝚘𝚝 𝚓𝚞𝚖𝚙𝚜𝚞𝚒𝚝 𝚊𝚕𝚘𝚗𝚐 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚊𝚜𝚜𝚘𝚌𝚒𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚐𝚎𝚊𝚛 𝚠𝚑𝚎𝚗 𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚛𝚊𝚗 𝚘𝚏𝚏 𝚝𝚘𝚠𝚊𝚛𝚍𝚜 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚂𝚔𝚢-𝙺𝚒𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚛. 𝚂𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚒𝚍𝚎, 𝚙𝚊𝚜𝚜𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚎𝚕𝚜𝚎. 𝙰 𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚒𝚘𝚗, 𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚋𝚎𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚒𝚝 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚍 𝚝𝚘𝚠𝚊𝚛𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚐𝚘𝚊𝚕.

𝚆𝚒𝚗.

𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚊𝚒𝚛 𝚜𝚖𝚎𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚜𝚑𝚢, 𝚍𝚎𝚊𝚝𝚑 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊𝚙𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚊𝚌𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚒𝚝 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚍𝚎𝚌𝚒𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚐𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚏𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚒𝚗𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚊𝚍 𝚜𝚎𝚝𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚞𝚙 𝚊 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚒𝚛 𝚝𝚘 𝚠𝚊𝚝𝚌𝚑 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚝𝚊𝚕𝚜 𝚋𝚊𝚝𝚝𝚕𝚎 𝚒𝚝 𝚘𝚞𝚝, 𝚜𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚌𝚕𝚊𝚒𝚖𝚎𝚍 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚘𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚕𝚒𝚏𝚎. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚢𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚏𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐, 𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚖𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚔 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎 𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚘𝚏 𝙲𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝-𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚌𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚎 𝚘𝚛 𝚍𝚎𝚖𝚘𝚗 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚛𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚗𝚎𝚊𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚋𝚊𝚜𝚎𝚜 - 𝚗𝚊𝚢. 𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊 𝚌𝚘𝚛𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗, 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚍𝚒𝚛𝚎𝚌𝚝𝚕𝚢 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚖𝚎𝚛𝚌𝚎𝚗𝚊𝚛𝚢 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖 𝚝𝚎𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚍𝚎𝚏𝚎𝚗𝚜𝚎𝚜. 𝚃𝚛𝚢𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚝𝚛𝚘𝚗𝚐-𝚊𝚛𝚖 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚆𝚎𝚜𝚝𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚍 𝚖𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚝𝚊𝚒𝚗𝚜, 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚎𝚐𝚒𝚌𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚒𝚖𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚝𝚊𝚗𝚝 𝚍𝚎𝚙𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚘𝚗 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚢𝚘𝚞 𝚊𝚜𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚒𝚝 𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚛𝚎𝚖𝚊𝚒𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚊𝚖𝚎. 𝙻𝚊𝚗𝚍, 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎𝚜 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚊𝚝 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎𝚜 𝚒𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜𝚗'𝚝. 𝚃𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚞𝚗𝚝𝚘𝚕𝚍 𝚙𝚊𝚛𝚝 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚛, 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚛 𝚊𝚐𝚊𝚒𝚗𝚜𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝙲𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝. 𝙸𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚛𝚎𝚐𝚞𝚕𝚊𝚛 𝚙𝚎𝚘𝚙𝚕𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚢𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚌𝚛𝚊𝚙𝚎 𝚋𝚢, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚊𝚕𝚜𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚘 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚝𝚊𝚔𝚎 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚘𝚙𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚝𝚞𝚗𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚘𝚏 𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚝𝚞𝚗𝚎, 𝚝𝚘 𝚎𝚡𝚙𝚕𝚘𝚒𝚝 𝚘𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚜.

𝙱𝚢 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚙𝚛𝚘𝚌𝚎𝚜𝚜 𝚌𝚊𝚞𝚐𝚑𝚝 𝚞𝚙 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊𝚕𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚍𝚢 𝚝𝚊𝚡𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚂𝚔𝚢𝚔𝚒𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚛, 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚊 𝚗𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚊 𝚓𝚎𝚝 𝚛𝚘𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚕𝚒𝚏𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚝'𝚜 𝚎𝚗𝚐𝚒𝚗𝚎𝚜 𝚜𝚙𝚞𝚛𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚞𝚙 𝚜𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚊𝚕 𝚖𝚊𝚌𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚎 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚊𝚒𝚛. 𝙷𝚎 𝚌𝚕𝚞𝚝𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚍 𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚛𝚘𝚕𝚜 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚞𝚒𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚏 𝚞𝚙 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚘𝚛𝚖𝚢, 𝚐𝚛𝚎𝚢 𝚌𝚕𝚘𝚞𝚍𝚜 𝚊𝚋𝚘𝚟𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚊 𝚜𝚚𝚞𝚊𝚍𝚛𝚘𝚗 𝚊𝚜 𝚐𝚘𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚘𝚎 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎 𝚍𝚎𝚏𝚎𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚛𝚜. 𝙻𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚌𝚕𝚘𝚌𝚔𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚔, 𝚑𝚎 𝚋𝚎𝚐𝚊𝚗 𝚝𝚘 𝚏𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚊𝚛𝚐𝚎𝚝𝚜 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚛𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚜𝚎. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚘𝚏 𝚑𝚎𝚊𝚟𝚢 𝚖𝚊𝚌𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚎𝚛𝚢 𝚔𝚒𝚌𝚔𝚎𝚍 𝚞𝚙 𝚊𝚜 𝚕𝚎𝚊𝚍 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚑𝚛𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚝𝚘𝚠𝚊𝚛𝚍𝚜 𝚊𝚗 𝚊𝚕𝚕-𝚋𝚕𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚓𝚎𝚝 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝚊 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚝𝚎 𝚝𝚒𝚐𝚎𝚛 𝚜𝚝𝚛𝚒𝚙𝚎, 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚒𝚕𝚘𝚝 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚗𝚘 𝚝𝚒𝚖𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚌𝚝 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚌𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚘 𝚙𝚒𝚎𝚌𝚎𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚏𝚒𝚎𝚛𝚢 𝚎𝚡𝚙𝚕𝚘𝚜𝚒𝚘𝚗.

𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚍𝚎𝚜𝚙𝚎𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚎, 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚘𝚏𝚝𝚎𝚗 𝚛𝚎𝚖𝚒𝚗𝚍𝚎𝚍 𝚁𝚘𝚋 𝚠𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚏𝚒𝚐𝚑𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚏𝚘𝚛. 𝙽𝚘𝚝 𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛𝚢𝚘𝚗𝚎'𝚜 𝚏𝚊𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚢 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚞𝚎 𝚜𝚊𝚏𝚎𝚝𝚢 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵, 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚁𝚘𝚋 𝚛𝚎𝚖𝚊𝚒𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚒𝚗 𝚌𝚘𝚛𝚙𝚘𝚛𝚊𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚛𝚘𝚕, 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚠𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎, 𝚙𝚎𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚙𝚜 𝚒𝚗 𝚊 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚔 𝚌𝚊𝚖𝚙. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚞𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚝𝚞𝚜 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚗𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚏𝚒𝚛𝚖𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚋𝚎 𝚑𝚘𝚙𝚎 𝚒𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚊𝚗𝚢 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚌𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚒𝚛 𝚜𝚞𝚛𝚟𝚒𝚟𝚊𝚕. 𝚃𝚘 𝚕𝚘𝚜𝚎 𝚑𝚘𝚙𝚎, 𝚖𝚎𝚊𝚗𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚢𝚘𝚞'𝚍 𝚑𝚊𝚟𝚎 𝚐𝚒𝚟𝚎𝚗 𝚞𝚙 𝚘𝚗 𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛𝚢𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐. 𝙸𝚝'𝚜 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚑𝚎 𝚓𝚞𝚜𝚝 𝚍𝚒𝚍𝚗'𝚝 𝚋𝚎𝚕𝚒𝚎𝚟𝚎 𝚒𝚗, 𝚗𝚘𝚝 𝚢𝚎𝚝 𝚊𝚝 𝚕𝚎𝚊𝚜𝚝. 𝙷𝚒𝚜 𝚙𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚗𝚝𝚜, 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚜𝚒𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚕𝚘𝚜𝚝 𝚠𝚑𝚎𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚝 𝚌𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚎𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚘𝚞𝚝𝚜𝚒𝚍𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚊𝚏𝚎 𝚣𝚘𝚗𝚎. 𝚃𝚑𝚎𝚢 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚕𝚕 𝚋𝚎 𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚟𝚎, 𝚑𝚎'𝚍 𝚏𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚖.

𝚁𝚘𝚋 𝚜𝚗𝚊𝚙𝚙𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚝𝚢 𝚊𝚜 𝚊 𝚓𝚎𝚝 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚜𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖 𝚍𝚘𝚠𝚗, 𝚊 𝚙𝚞𝚛𝚜𝚞𝚒𝚝 𝚏𝚘𝚕𝚕𝚘𝚠𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚍𝚒𝚟𝚎𝚍 𝚍𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚕𝚘𝚞𝚍𝚜 𝚝𝚛𝚢𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚋𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚔 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚎 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚒𝚝'𝚜 𝚌𝚘𝚞𝚛𝚜𝚎 𝚘𝚏 𝚊𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗. 𝙷𝚎 𝚔𝚎𝚢𝚎𝚍 𝚞𝚙 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚊𝚍𝚒𝚘 𝚊𝚜𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚑𝚎𝚕𝚙. "𝙳𝚎𝚊𝚍𝚕𝚢-𝚕𝚎𝚊𝚍, 𝚊𝚕𝚕 - 𝙸 𝚗𝚎𝚎𝚍 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚝𝚘 𝚐𝚎𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚐𝚞𝚢 𝚘𝚏𝚏 𝚖𝚢 𝚊𝚜𝚜!" 𝙷𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚊𝚕𝚏 𝚎𝚡𝚙𝚎𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚉𝚊𝚌𝚑 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚠 𝚞𝚙 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚜𝚊𝚟𝚎 𝚑𝚒𝚖, 𝚋𝚞𝚝 𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝙼𝙸𝙰. 𝙼𝚘𝚜𝚝 𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎𝚕𝚢 𝚊 𝙿𝙾𝚆 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚗𝚎𝚖𝚢, 𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚘𝚝 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚝 𝚍𝚘𝚠𝚗 𝚠𝚎𝚎𝚔𝚜 𝚊𝚐𝚘 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚞𝚒𝚕𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 - 𝚞𝚗𝚒𝚖𝚊𝚐𝚒𝚗𝚊𝚋𝚕𝚎. 𝙷𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚋𝚛𝚘𝚝𝚑𝚎𝚛..

𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚊 𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚒𝚕𝚎 𝚐𝚞𝚒𝚍𝚊𝚗𝚌𝚎 𝚜𝚢𝚜𝚝𝚎𝚖 𝚝𝚛𝚢𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚘 𝚕𝚘𝚌𝚔 𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚓𝚎𝚝 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚋𝚕𝚊𝚛𝚒𝚗𝚐. "𝙼𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚕𝚎, 𝚎𝚟𝚊𝚍𝚎. 𝙼𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚕𝚎, 𝚎𝚟𝚊𝚍𝚎. 𝙼𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚕𝚎.." 𝚁𝚘𝚋'𝚜 𝚑𝚊𝚗𝚍𝚜 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚝𝚎 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚘𝚗𝚝𝚛𝚘𝚕𝚜 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚎 𝚙𝚞𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚌𝚔 𝚞𝚙 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚜𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚓𝚎𝚝 𝚏𝚕𝚢𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚕𝚘𝚞𝚍𝚜 𝚊𝚋𝚘𝚟𝚎, 𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚝𝚊𝚛𝚝𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚒𝚗𝚌𝚞𝚛 𝙶-𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚌𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚊𝚌𝚎 𝚙𝚞𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔. 𝙰 𝚐𝚘𝚕𝚍𝚎𝚗-𝚕𝚒𝚔𝚎 𝚐𝚕𝚘𝚠 𝚊𝚞𝚛𝚊 𝚊𝚙𝚙𝚎𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚊𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚊𝚌𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚒𝚏 𝚜𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚘𝚗𝚎 𝚎𝚕𝚜𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚒𝚝𝚝𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚒𝚗 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚑𝚒𝚖, 𝚝𝚊𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝙶-𝚏𝚘𝚛𝚌𝚎 𝚊𝚜 𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚊𝚌𝚎 𝚝𝚞𝚛𝚗𝚎𝚍 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚍𝚒𝚜𝚝𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚜𝚎𝚍, 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚙𝚞𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚕𝚊𝚡𝚎𝚍. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚓𝚎𝚝 𝚑𝚊𝚍 𝚏𝚒𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚒𝚝𝚜 𝚙𝚊𝚢𝚕𝚘𝚊𝚍, 𝚊𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚖𝚘𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚁𝚘𝚋 𝚙𝚞𝚕𝚕𝚎𝚍 𝚋𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚏𝚕𝚒𝚙𝚙𝚎𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚏 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚘 𝚊 𝙺𝚞𝚕𝚋𝚒𝚝 𝚖𝚊𝚗𝚎𝚞𝚟𝚎𝚛 𝚠𝚑𝚒𝚌𝚑 𝚙𝚞𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚕𝚎 𝚙𝚊𝚜𝚝 𝚑𝚒𝚖, 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚏 𝚋𝚎𝚑𝚒𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚎𝚗𝚎𝚖𝚢 𝚙𝚕𝚊𝚗𝚎.

𝙷𝚒𝚜 𝚏𝚒𝚗𝚐𝚎𝚛 𝚕𝚊𝚒𝚍 𝚘𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚛𝚒𝚐𝚐𝚎𝚛 𝚋𝚞𝚝𝚝𝚘𝚗.




𝙱𝚊𝚌𝚔 𝚒𝚗 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚒𝚝𝚢, 𝚑𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚍 𝚑𝚒𝚖𝚜𝚎𝚕𝚏 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚝𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚗-𝚌𝚊𝚛 𝚛𝚘𝚘𝚖 𝚠𝚒𝚝𝚑 𝙶𝚊𝚛𝚞𝚍𝚊 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚝𝚑𝚒𝚜 𝚗𝚎𝚠 𝚠𝚘𝚖𝚊𝚗. 𝚂𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚖𝚊𝚕𝚕, 𝚢𝚘𝚞𝚗𝚐-𝚕𝚘𝚘𝚔𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊𝚗𝚍 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚎 𝚊𝚕𝚘𝚗𝚐 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚕𝚒𝚗𝚎𝚜 𝚘𝚏 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚌𝚕𝚒𝚗𝚒𝚌𝚊𝚕 𝚟𝚊𝚛𝚒𝚎𝚝𝚢. 𝚃𝚑𝚎 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚛𝚘𝚍𝚞𝚌𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗 𝚘𝚏 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚋𝚎𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚊 𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚎𝚊𝚛𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚗𝚘 𝚜𝚞𝚛𝚙𝚛𝚒𝚜𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢, 𝚙𝚎𝚛𝚑𝚊𝚙𝚜 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚗𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚏𝚊𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚒𝚊𝚛 𝚏𝚛𝚘𝚖 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚍𝚘𝚌𝚞𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚊𝚝 𝚠𝚊𝚜 𝚜𝚎𝚗𝚝 𝚘𝚞𝚝 𝚒𝚗 𝚛𝚎𝚐𝚊𝚛𝚍𝚜 𝚝𝚘 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚐𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚙. 𝚃𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚐𝚑 𝚒𝚝 𝚒𝚗𝚝𝚎𝚛𝚗𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚛𝚊𝚒𝚜𝚎𝚍 𝚚𝚞𝚎𝚜𝚝𝚒𝚘𝚗𝚜 𝚊𝚜 𝚝𝚘 𝚠𝚑𝚢 𝚊 𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚎𝚊𝚛𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚠𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚊𝚝𝚝𝚊𝚌𝚑𝚎𝚍 𝚝𝚘 𝚜𝚞𝚌𝚑 𝚊 𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚜𝚒𝚘𝚗, 𝚠𝚎𝚕𝚕 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚄𝙳𝙵 𝚠𝚎𝚛𝚎 𝚗𝚎𝚟𝚎𝚛 𝚛𝚎𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚖𝚘𝚜𝚝 𝚖𝚘𝚛𝚊𝚕𝚕𝚢 𝚐𝚞𝚒𝚍𝚒𝚗𝚐 𝚙𝚎𝚘𝚙𝚕𝚎 𝚒𝚗 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚠𝚘𝚛𝚕𝚍. 𝚂𝚞𝚌𝚑 𝚓𝚞𝚍𝚐𝚖𝚎𝚗𝚝𝚜 𝚊𝚐𝚊𝚒𝚗𝚜𝚝 𝚑𝚎𝚛 𝚌𝚑𝚊𝚛𝚊𝚌𝚝𝚎𝚛 𝚜𝚑𝚘𝚞𝚕𝚍 𝚋𝚎 𝚛𝚎𝚜𝚎𝚛𝚟𝚎𝚍, 𝚑𝚎 𝚋𝚊𝚛𝚎𝚕𝚢 𝚔𝚗𝚎𝚠 𝚑𝚎𝚛.

"𝙽𝚊𝚖𝚎'𝚜 𝚁𝚘𝚋, 𝚌𝚊𝚛𝚎 𝚏𝚘𝚛 𝚊 𝚜𝚖𝚘𝚔𝚎?"

𝙷𝚎'𝚍 𝚜𝚖𝚒𝚕𝚎, 𝚒𝚝 𝚊𝚕𝚕 𝚏𝚎𝚕𝚝 𝚝𝚑𝚎 𝚜𝚊𝚖𝚎 𝚊𝚗𝚢𝚠𝚊𝚢.

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Errikos "Conductor" Rigas Bend between CEC and Arrowpeak 0900 [na]
Opportunity. It seemed to be the only absolute of the human race, recognizing and exploiting an opportunity. Some find bigger exploits, most just find something to get by. This small town, if you could call it that, only really existed because of the CEC outpost. It was anchored off the bend in the Tortues that fed the smaller towns past Embergate off the Sauraine. Most just referred to it as the Bend.

It used to be a respectable town, of that Errikos was certain, but that must have been at least a hundred years ago with Embergate eventually growing and overtaking the opportunity as a port of service for the area. In its wake, Bend languished until the comet came and, with it, the CEC outpost. The little town sprang to life with services aimed at catering towards the staff of the base initially as many military towns do, but with it's proximity to the comet's path, as well as river access, it became a place for individuals and groups to sneak things into and out of that same path as it connected to the other river systems that reached from Sauraine into the deeper interior of mainland Cetra. Marvelous old buildings stood juxtaposed to hasty stalls and new prefabs and the streets were filled with vendors of all sorts with cultural foods from much of Cetra gushing delicious aromas into the streets.

Sitting in the outdoor area of a coffee shop, Errikos couldn't help but notice the more southern heat of this region. His iced tea repelling the morning for just a moment as he took in the people around him. "Ohhhh my and what is that?" There was one vendor just across, she was working a small charcoal grill with whole fish roasting on top. With little more than large salt crystals wedged into its sliced flesh for flavoring and a paper fan to stoke the heat, it still beguiled and seduced the slightly grayed man. He hadn't learned a great deal about Cetra cuisine, if this could even be considered a regional dish, but it smelled heavenly. He thought of the plan ahead. Why would he be tasked to work with a special warfare division? What would they be planning? Surely they were likely even more suicidal than the average mission considering the skill set. They'd be expected to survive of course, if nothing else, the aggregation of spirits seemed to make Aeons more resilient.

A small utility truck rumbled down the stone road, stirring Errikos from his day dream. It looked rusted and beat down but the engine seemed solid enough and with plenty of boxes in the back for, whatever. Was it always like this? Was there always such a separation between us? Errikos was thankful he wasn't as big a hitter as some Aeons and didn't draw attention. He had an issued phone on him that had to be worth more than what some families here survived on in a month and it was just casually given to him by the UDF. The big corps seemed… monolithic in the face of the average person, and they only seemed to grow stronger in the wake of the comet. Even the UDF, though he once loved them for rescue, was guilty of so much. Were any of them clean? Was Errikos clean? He felt compassion for so many of the rebel groups angry at the world and what had happened to them. They only wanted a better life, or at least, that's what Errikos thought of them. He could see himself as one had fate not gifted… or cursed, him with this gathering of spirits. He took the final sip of tea, finishing his musings.

The Belleconan stood up and hopped on the older heavy metal bike and zipped off down the street headed towards what had become the bus station. Perhaps, if he was lucky enough, Errikos would be able to secure transport to CEC. For the moment he tried to stop musing political and just focus on the road.

Lore
Tortues - the east west river that connects Sauraine to Arrowpeak

Bend - A small town / outpost that sprung up southwest of the bend in the Tortues, not as grand as Embergate, and a place where more illegal things trying to get into or out of the comet zone are worked. An old town revived by the CEC outpost and the comet; it's now home to a collection of individuals trying to get by that either couldn't afford Embergate, or perhaps aren't wanted there.


Post Summary / Direction
Errikos is currently headed west from Bend towards the CEC, and will ride on a transport of some kind, maybe a military cargo truck, maybe a bus.


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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Prisk
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Prisk - - -

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FLASHBACK FARHAVEN [Train Station Platforms] 07:??AM @DeadDrop
There it was again. No matter where she went or whom she spoke to, his name would eventually be spoken or implied. Emilia did not blame Robert for anything, though. She had chosen not to speak about it to anyone or ever really explain what happened. It was unclear whether or not Emilia herself understood why things played out the way it did—everything happened so fast, and in such a blur worthy of being dissected by anthropologists forever. The girl shrugged at the moment. There was nothing to be said, anyway. "It's just my hair that someone said looks like wings when I jump or fall—I don't know which—but I wish I had actual wings." She sighed. The two waited patiently for commuters to clear out of the train and move away from the platform. "At least you get to fly for real, huh? I should've joined Nav. I guess I didn't care much about the divisions or what they meant back when everything began. Everything felt so innocent during those days. Now, everything just feels dirty and corrupted. I don't know, maybe I'm just starting to lose it, finally." Emilia smiled back at the man, as they were able to board the train, though with a hint of despair from delving too deep into her heart and mind, too early in the morning.

EMILIA "GARUDA" LANGE FARHAVEN [Inside Train] 07:40AM @DeadDrop@Salsa Verde
The somewhat-stranger was no stranger anymore. Upon hearing her name, Emilia could instantly remember it on the list of names for the Group she had read. The pretty face and mesmerizing smile were, indeed, familiar, but Emilia gave up on trying to place them. ResDiv, huh? Explains the excitement... Emilia thought to herself, as the chipper words and introductions sprouted from Amanita. Perhaps it was not the infamous Research Division lack of socializing that made this girl so eager with energy, but rather the company she was currently with. Emilia was not exactly an unknown face, neither was her code name 'Garuda'. As reflected upon several times throughout her life, whether or not it was a wise decision, Emilia had been a sort of 'pinup girl' for the Warfare Division on more than one occasion. Much of that happened during the early days and during her time with him. "Votara, indeed." Emilia smirked, keeping eye contact with the girl until the sudden break for decorum. "Emilia Lange." They exchanged a slightly damp and nervous handshake, but all in good spirit. "Oh, don't mention it. I'm not big on formalities, anyway." Emilia said, although led right back into conversation by Eun-Ji's question about Robert, which he answered himself and followed up with a gift—if one could call it that. "No, Robert, she doesn't need one of your death-sticks—nobody does. Let's just find somewhere to sit." Emilia spoke with a slightly sarcastic tone, just to lighten the mood of the moment.

They found themselves a decent six-seat space in the train. The composition was three seats that faced each other with a narrow table between. A huge window shielded them from the wind and rain outside. The conductor of the train arrived shortly after they had settled in, asking for tickets. After it had all been settled, they could finally find a bit of quiet and peace. The car was not awfully crowded, but many of the other seats were occupied. They had four hours of cozy train ride ahead of them with lots of scenery and a few stops along the way. The train had a restaurant/food car as well, which would be serving either breakfast or lunch. Emilia was definitely set on getting breakfast at some point for her few remaining credits.

"So, Eun-Ji, have you been in the the Group before? I know it's my first time. Not sure if Robert has been in it before—have you?" Emilia asked, catching a glimpse of their eyes, both of them one after another yet at the same time.


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Flashbacks and this kind of interaction could go on forever, but the easiest way to close them is to simply indicate in a "note" like this at the end of the post that you feel satisfied and won't reply further. I'm cool with it, everyone will be cool with it, so there's no need to be 'polite'.
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IFAN "ZEMAT" FRANKS BELLFORT 08:00AM @nodogs
Travel had left Ifan in sour spirits. It had been easier to get the overnight ferry into Cetra, docking at Bellfort where he was currently crouched by the water, observing its ebb and flow while the dank air settled on his skin. Travelling on such short notice was inconvenient, but necessary; there was a meeting to be held at Cetra East regarding the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group, attendance heavily advised. A faint relief washed over him. Ifan was not as recognised in Cetra as he was in his home continent, and the people here were seemingly less objectified to Spierans than those who would cry 'fucking Spid!' at him on the streets of Anatolian countries. He was far beyond used to the vitriol, but as the war grew longer and tensions rose he found it tiring, even despite his limited time actually spent amongst civilians. UDF soldiers who shared a similar predisposition had quickly learned not to voice them publicly, and the idiocy was filtered out in most departments.

He inhaled deeply to clear his mind and rose to his feet, swinging an overnight bag over his shoulders and securing it tight against his back. The meeting was not until tomorrow, but his station in Telos had lasted longer than was first anticipated and he welcomed a change of scenery. It also gave him time to indulge in some vices, as he approached a street vendor with 'FRESHLY PLUCKED OILIES' painted onto a wooden A-board. The queue was moderately long yet moved quickly. Ifan was next up to order in no time, credits at the ready as he felt the warmth of the enclosed grill radiating from the window frame.

"I'll have the juiveng."

"Skin?" yapped the vendor.

"Skin." He counted thirty seven seconds between the exchange and a disposable container being thrust in his face. He left his credits on the countertop and returned to the waterfront, sitting on a bench and breaching the encasing of his meal.

Juiveng was one of many street food dishes involving grilled oilbird, a species native to the mainland surrounding the Sauraine. This dish in particular was several whole wings of the bird, marinated in a sweet, tarty sauce and sometimes served with a crushed leaf of the Ceonise plant, adding a spicy kick. Ifan tore into a wing, now woefully hungry from 11 hours on a public ferry and a month of UDF meal kits. Thoughts of what this new mission might be mulled about his mind whilst he savoured the cooked bird. The issued list contained several others Ifan recognised, and their roles and achievements in the UDF telegraphed something big—not that there could ever be a small task assigned to such a specialised group. He did wonder as to the discretion of the mission, however. Some of these Aeons were, simply put, celebrities; some of them legends.

Finishing his meal, Ifan relinquished his overnight bag to the seat beside him, rooting through for a bottle of water. He received an empty, crushed plastic bottle for his effort. A sigh rumbled in his chest, and he secured the bag back in place before setting off in search of a store. He wasn't strapped for credits, per se, but he couldn't help his frugal nature causing him to be irked by the situation. He hoped whichever grunt had appropriated his water flask a few days prior was enjoying it to its fullest use.

There was a modest-looking store close enough to the train station: the type where the door chimed a little electronic jingle as it swung open. Ifan examined the aisles, observing all manner of dehydrated and rehydrated meat and vegetables, packaged snack foods and various drinks lined up in fridges under flickering lights. He salvaged through the colourful bottles and labels advertising various added minerals and electrolytes to find the unbranded water. Considering the journey ahead and his prior mishap, he picked up six bottles to be safe, three balanced in each hand. There was one other person in the store besides him; a punk, who upon noticing Ifan had fixed him with a stare from the lottery machine. Amongst the plethora of imagery on his jacket, most recognisable was the stripes of thread in the colours of the Spieran flag—white, gold and blue—on his right breast pocket. A subtle calling to home.

Ifan approached the shopkeeper and placed the bottles on the counter, swinging his bag around to pack them as the elderly man totalled the items. His eyes were creased with worry at the young man burning a hole in Ifan's back.

"That will be... six credits, sir." His voice wobbled with the stress of age, though his words were enunciated clearly with the pride of a generation that had flourished.

"Thank you." Ifan paid with a firm nod. He zipped his bag up and swung it back around, turning to leave. The punk's attention quickly turned to the lottery machine as Ifan made his way past, which gave a view of the words 'COUNTER KULTURE' written vertically on the back of his jacket. Ifan walked out the door, the jingle chiming behind him. A few paces down the street he heard the jingle once more and his jaw clenched. He didn't want to deal with this right now.

National pride was a double-edged sword. Apart from the anti-military punk groups, there were many in Spiera who did not appreciate the image of having their own Aeon, being a more pragmatic peoples than most. In his four years as part of Warfare, Ifan, in his naivete, had contributed to a few of the advertisement pieces suggested to him. They were nothing too involved, just some photographs for posters and flyers, and in the years since he had politely asked to be left out of them, but for some they had stuck. It didn't help he had changed very little from the material except in age.

The train station was soon in reach, a wall of UDF soldiers manning the checkpoint. As Ifan stepped closer, he barely had time to register something flying at him before he span out of the way, a brick shattering against the pavement. He stalled a step and dropped his bag to the floor, charging at the source of the projectile. His body made contact with the punk from the store, tackling him to the ground. He raised his fist, feinting a punch to the youth's head to quell him. UDF soldiers were on the both of them in a second. Ifan rolled off the punk, who was promptly seized by one of the soldiers, quickly producing his identification from his pocket.

"Oh shit," he heard the nearest soldier mutter. The other one turned towards the checkpoint and signalled the all clear. "It's Corporal Franks!" Ifan grabbed his bag and walked with them to the gate, open in waiting.

"You're the worst of them!" The punk started screaming, arms pinned behind him as he was arrested. "You're not one of us! Cursed bastard! You're scum! All of you are scum!"

Ifan disappeared onto the main platform, the punk's obscenities fading into the background behind the rumble of the idle trains. His train was already waiting and he boarded, righteously hydrating in a seat by the window, bag beside him. Cetra East was just a little further away.

Lore
Spieran flag — It looks like this. Many Spierans will find subtle ways of representing their country's flag than having it emblazoned on them for fear of persecution. Spiera is the face of such hostility in the western region due to various military efforts from the Spieran government to obtain natural resources in neighbouring regions. The formation of the UDF has not helped matters, with many countries being imposed upon by military personnel from the same country that occupied their lands.

Juiveng — The history behind many oilbird dishes comes from the sailors of the old days. Oilbirds tend to float in packs on the water's surface like oil, hence their name, and it was therefore easy to catch at least one or two if you had a big enough net. As a result, oilbird of various preparation methods is a popular dish in Cetra's port cities and inland ones nearby. For juiveng (pronounced hwee-ven) in particular, it was a dish enjoyed by ships transporting fresh produce, from which they made the delicious sauce. The modern iteration keeps to the traditional recipe, with a few additions thanks to the importation of certain produce, and tastes twice as good for it.
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by Martian
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Martian Possibly a yautja

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LIAM “SPITFIRE” OGATA ROSESTAR 07:30 AM @Martian
Liam had just gotten off the ferry from Bonevale, the trip across the Sauraine leaving him feeling ill. In all of his twenty-three years, Liam had never been able to go on a boat without falling ill, never gaining his sea legs. This was odd to Liam as he had never had trouble with flying, which was less of a natural thing then traveling by water. But regardless of the reasons, Liam felt like he was going to hurl as he walked down the docks into town.

Luckily for the young man, he found a pharmacy just off the boardwalk. Liam immediately headed in, buying a bottle of anti-nauseant pills and a large bottle of water. Taking a seat on a bench on the boardwalk, Liam quickly downed two pills, washing them down with a generous gulping of water. He then waited on the bench, hoping the pills would kick in.

After about a half-hour of just sitting attempting to regulate his breathing, Liam finally felt well enough to stand up. Checking the time on his phone, Liam saw that he still had two hours before his next leg of the journey. From downtown Rosestar, Liam was supposed to take the bullet train due south down to just past Embergate. From there he would catch a bus down to the UDF Cetra East Command.

The whole idea of going to this base and becoming a part of the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group, was still kind of shocking to Liam. He had assumed that his contributions to the war against the Legion would be purely mechanical, repairing the machines of war. But then again fate had chosen him as an Aeon, gifting him these magic powers.

So Liam kind of saw it as his duty to use his powers as part of the UDF. The truth was that Liam thought that everyone should contribute in their own way. Liam didn’t have a problem with any of the UDF propaganda posters that lined the walls of the shops of the port, with more recruitment posters adorning Rosestar than there was reelection ads for the town mayor.

But Liam’s mind was taken off the UDF by the grumbling of his stomach. The ferry had left so early in the morning that Liam hadn’t had a chance to get breakfast. Figuring that he should grab a bite before heading to the bullet train. Fortunately the boardwalk was riddled with restaurants, of many different cultures.

Deciding to follow his nose, Liam headed to whatever smelt the best. This would lead him to a small Nihon shack. Liam had grown up on Nihon food, so he knew what good Nihon grub smelt like, and this small building was giving off delicious scents. Heading into the tiny restaurant, Liam greeted the owner in Nihon.

“I’ll take the Loukae soup,” said Liam.

While most people would not start their day with a savory and sour soup, Liam didn’t care. Good food was good food. After a couple minutes, the chef plopped a big bowl of soup in front of Liam. The scent of the oilbird, nuts, and root vegetables filled Liam’s nose.

Thanking the chef in Nihon, Liam immediately dived in to the Loukae soup. He was enveloped in a familiar taste, reminding him of growing up with his grandmother’s cooking. Finishing it faster than he probably should have, Liam placed some cash on the counter, giving quite a generous tip.

With his stomach satiated, Liam walked over to the edge of the boardwalk and to a bus terminal. Standing there was a pair of UDF soldiers, checking IDs before anyone could board the bus. Much as he had for the ferry, Liam showed the soldiers his UDF credentials and got on the bus. The ride would be uneventful as Liam enjoyed the local architecture.

The bus took Liam directly to the train station, where again he had to confirm who he was to UDF soldiers. Walking up onto the platform, Liam saw on his phone that he still had a little bit of time before the train arrived. So he bought a soda from a vending machine on the platform, and took a seat.

From behind him, Liam could hear the two soldiers who had asked for ID, were now talking about him. This wasn’t a new occurrence, as most members of the UDF seemed to react this way when they learned that he was an Aeon. Even though they were on the front line of the war, a good chunk of the public distrusted Aeons and their use of spirits.

But Liam ignored them. He was doing his best and that was all he could do. Even if he wasn’t lauded as a hero, Liam still believed that he was doing a good thing. So he just sat on the bench, taking a drink of the soda.




L O R E

- Loukae soup is a traditional Nihon dish. Made of oilbird meat, sweet nuts, and thick root vegetables, it is sweet, sour, and savory at the same time. In Nihon it is both traditional street food and a hearty meal at home.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Salsa Verde
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Salsa Verde 起死回生

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EUN-JI "AMANITA" PARK FARHAVEN [Train Car] 07:40AM @Prisk@DeadDrop
Amanita had met a many of Votara citizens as her time as a child, mostly interactions that dealt with her leaving her trade with goodies by the benevolent people. A candy here, a few extra credits there, it was mostly due to the fact that everyone was in the same precarious position. She was half tempted to press more on her background to see if they were any more similarities in regard to each other. Her hands did feel rough from her handshake, whether that was due to the excessive training she must endure to be an elite of the warfare division or the callouses from farming that never seem to grow into fresh skin. Either way she was more than happy to do away with the always awkward, sometimes necessary, first impressions and pleasantries. Her hand recoiled back to her wool shirt as she wiped her damp hands in a less than graceful fashion. This was much harsher than defending her doctoral thesis. “I’d love to know more about Votara, It’s been too long since I’ve been.” And since she’s been home, but she would stifle that topic for later. The mysterious man brooding solemnly next to them finally entertained her existence, after all she was talking off Garuda’s ear.

Rob, rob, where had she heard that name before? She searched the annals and rows of knowledge she kept tucked neatly in what felt like bookshelves in her brain. Each carefully marked with a letter followed by a short number sequence. Maybe her organization was another spirit of its own and helped her increase her brilliance. Feeling a mixture of exhaustion from the morning and sloth in terms of searching she snapped back to the conversation. It didn’t matter at the moment as she could read the rest of the dossiers later or wait for the long awaited mission briefing at central base. All that mattered was the carcinogen in his hand that waited in response. Eun-Ji often had an issue with coming off as rude when she just felt she was being forward. Nervous on whether she was going to leave a bad impression from the start by saying something more loquacious than not, she hesitated for a second before Garuda graciously interrupted and spoke for her. “I appreciate the offer, Rob. I’m Eun-Ji as you probably overheard. Nice to meet you, nice jacket, is it real leather?”

The trio found themselves seated for the rest of the train ride into the final station. The sound of a hole puncher clicking away swept through the aisle of the train until the conductor came, clipped their tickets, and left a receipt tucked in the small iron divot above the headrest of the seat.

“Uhm good question, no, this would be the first time I work in a group of Aeons if that’s what you mean? Normally ResDiv is just you by yourself wondering what the outside looks like and if there will be sun left by the time you get out. I do work together with the custodial staff to make sure things are easier on their end. I wouldn’t mind collaborating my research with others, especially Belladonna if you’ve heard of her, but my approach is much different in regards to the Stigma.”

Eun-ji shrugged and then realized she had been blabbering again when she caught the gaze of Emilia. Hoping to detract she fiddled around in her bag pulling out three tiny glasses and a green bottle with characters from her mother tongue, Shugeul. “I know I said no to your death sticks, but what about a drink?” The two would probably still be captivated that she had all that in her small bag, even more why she would have such a thing and multiple glasses in her bag. “Drinking tastes better in the company of others and we have four hours so why not, breakfast is coming soon anyways.” Without waiting for a response she cracked the seal from the screwable cap open and poured the clear liquid into three glasses and distributed amongst her peers. “This is 혼(hon), otherwise known as hon or ghost here. Since we occupy the realm of spirits and spirit is also used to describe alcohol our people went with the next best thing, Ghost. So what are we cheering to?” She said with a raised glass.



L O R E
  • Shugeul is the national written language of Goryeo, this is where their alphabet is derived. The letters for the five basic consonants reflect the shape of the speech organs used to pronounce them, and they are systematically modified to indicate phonetic features; similarly, the vowel letters are systematically modified for related sounds, often dubbed as a syllabic alphabet. It’s gone through a number of reconstructions from feudal periods up until the present. This is not be mistaken with the spoken language which is known as Goryeon.
  • 혼 (hon) has many a definition but one localized for the use of the alcohol is Ghost. Hon is an alcohol that is made from starches that range from the traditional rice, wheat, barely, to the more non traditional with sweet potato or potato. It is widely distributed and integral to their drinking society as the drink is smooth and despite the alcohol content, missing in the bitterness exhibited by others. It also comes in many fun flavors, but Eun-Jim favorite is of the sour variety.



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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Archangel89
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Archangel89 NEZUKO-CHANNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!

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AARON “ZEPHYR” NYLES FARHAVEN [Train Station] 07:15AM @Prisk@DeadDrop@Salsa Verde
The lulling sounds of the train in motion did its part in attempting to lull him into a sense of near sleep, the Nakamasa clattering against the wall of his compartment. It was a feeling that he wasn’t used to having since he spent several weeks in a row on assignment on the far end of the country gathering intel and killing the infected. Life was a bit chaotic for the speedy Aeon, uncovering enemy plots, killing infected creatures and people, the constant eye on R&D so for the time to get a little shut eye was something that was a great relief. As he watched trees pass by he felt his eyes begin to drift he began to wonder what the S.W.A.R.G. was going to be like.

FLASHBACK "The Sounds of War" HALIFAX [Near Obsidia Ridge] 3 Weeks Prior
The sun had long since left the sky and the night had covered it in a deep thick navy. From just beyond the town's border, Aaron watched the last few people go to their homes and shut down for the evening. He had been given reports of a group of bandits attacking villages using infected wildlife and weapons that seemed beyond the normal means of the populace. The whole thing smelled fishy, it seemed like someone was providing the means for these people to pillage. In the distance he could hear a family laughing and having a good time and it brought a smile to his face bringing back good memories. Aaron had been there for hours just outside the vision of the people and he decided that he would prop himself against a tree and take a moment to rest himself for just a moment. Letting out a sigh of relief he dozed off, just for a moment.
SCREEEECCCCCHHHHHHHHHHHHH


AARON “ZEPHYR” NYLES FARHAVEN [Inside Train] 07:51AM @Prisk@DeadDrop@Salsa Verde
Sitting up drenched and a cold sweat the whole compartment was humming with electricity as Aaron’s hand was white knuckled gripped onto the hilt of Nakamasa, his other finger on the trigger of the firing mechanism, and his spirits of electricity crackled around the makeshift room. The shallow rapid breaths began to slow to a crawl as he gently let go of the sword and collapsed into the bench seating. ’This is exactly why you don’t sleep Zeph’. Wondering what on earth disturbed his mildly disturbing cat nap when he peeked his head out of his compartment to see a group of people converging outside another compartment. He didn’t think much of it until he recognized Garuda and made the connection that they must be the other members of the Group. As he took a moment to gather himself, Aaron had to take a moment to remind himself about his number one rule, don’t get too attached. As he wiped the wrinkles out of his pants and took a moment to ruffle out his loose fitting button up shirt Aaron turned on his “dealing with people” facade and knocked on the door of the other compartment.

"Well, well, if it isn’t my fellow members of the Group—and what an illustrious group. Allow me to introduce myself..."

He gave an over exaggerated bow as if he was some vaudeville showman,

"You may call me Zephyr, the fastest Aeon this side of Cetra!"


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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Prisk
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Prisk - - -

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EMILIA "GARUDA" LANGE UDF: CETRA EAST COMMAND [Briefing Room] Day 1 - 05:00AM @Prisk
Being a career UDF rat meant always being half asleep and half awake throughout every day. This particular morning was no different. As a 'valuable' asset, as the UDF called it, it was ordinary or maybe even customary to be pulled in a hundred different directions at the same time. Some Division wanted this or that, a desperate general jacked up on adrenaline wanted something else, and then soldiers in the dirt somewhere pleaded for assistance with something entirely different. Oh yes, it was a ride that never ended. In the beginning, it was overwhelming and extremely stressful. But, after a couple of years, Emilia had gotten so used to it that she barely noticed it. Whenever there was a spare moment, she tended to instantly fall asleep just like many other soldiers did. Emilia never did understand how the boys in NavDiv were able to constantly stay on the move, especially Air Mobile.

The UDF: Cetra East Command had an enormous underground facility. While there were vehicles, containers, and other equipment parked at the surface compound, much of it was eventually shipped down into the ground. The briefing for the third edition of the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group was held in one of many spaces for similar purposes. Emilia and everyone else had been requested to wear official UDF colors while staying at the Command Center. Shirt and pants with a black/grey digital camouflage pattern and dark boots had been provided for everyone in attendance—the UDF had even gotten everyone's surnames right on the name tag. The shirts also had three patches on them. First, the standard UDF Division patch, which was in some cases different for the attendees. Second, a UDF Guardian Corps. patch to indicate Aeon status. Lastly, the all new and fancy Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group—S.W.A.R.G.—patch with the famous or maybe infamous wolf head biting a sword on it. This was Emilia's first time being in the Group. While she previously had doubts and felt slightly anxious, being in the here and now with the patch stuck to her shirt made those feelings lighten up. There was a mission and directions to follow, which made things easier to grasp, instead of relying on her devious ego to fill the gaps.

The briefing was held by Jeffrey "Jeff" McMahon, a Four-Star General overseeing many of the UDF operations in Southern and Eastern Cetra. He was man of great discipline and routine, eating once a day and sleeping only four hours a night. The grunts and soldiers loved him as man of the people, but he was also stubborn, overly ambitious, and sometimes antagonistic in his high pursuits and attention to mission detail. McMahon was the type of man that would get off a helicopter with a straight back, have a cigar in the middle of a fire fight, or carry a wounded soldier on his back for many miles. He was a man of long military history, serving his country for many years before the UDF, and he had more medals and prestige than most could ever hope to achieve.

"Listen up—roughly 72 hours ago, we lost communication and visual contact with one of our assets on the ground, near Steelwater." The general pointed to a tactical map on the frontal screen opposite to the fancy seats. "It is of the utmost importance that this asset is recovered, alive. We've had reports coming in that the asset either has support from an Evolved or can manifest into one himself." The term Evolved was something the UDF used instead of saying Archon, for whatever reason, just as they were obsessed with using dense acronyms that nobody understood. "Our friends at IntDiv estimate that the asset is the Evolved, which means that manifestation is possible and makes the situation Advanced Risk. This is why the order for Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group composition came down from UDF High Command." The general sighed and rubbed his eyes with spare fingers. "The asset in question is..."

Fuck... please, not him.

"Benjamin Regardie, code name 'Bahamut'." Emilia felt as if she melted into the cold, steel chair she was sitting in. Her heart dropped to the ground, grew legs, and ran away to jump off of a building. This was beyond embarrassing, beyond any drama that day-time television could come up with, and beyond anything she could ever prepare herself for. This was him—the guy she had tried to forget for years, who constantly haunted her mind worse than the monsters the entire war was fighting—her old flame. This was also an Aeon legend, UDF extraordinaire, 1st edition S.W.A.R.G., who single-handedly did more for the war effort than nearly all other Aeon put together. He was also unmatched in physical dominance, spiritual power, or whatever anyone wanted to call it—and nobody understood how the fuck it happened. He was just a run-of-the-mill sports guy before the comet arrived. And then there was his code name, Bahamut, which in mythology of his home country was a huge fucking dragon that shot laser beams out of its mouth. That alone was enough for people to shit their pants when going up against him.


B E N J A M I N " B A H A M U T " R E G A R D I E
326'4


The general exhaled deeply, muttered gibberish to himself for a moment, and then seemingly went off script and threw all military formality out the window.

"Do you know anything about this, Lange?" He huffed and puffed, sounding almost agitated by Emilia's presence.
"Why would I know anything about this, sir?" Emilia responded with a deeply resting bitch face.
"Don't bullshit me, Lange—I can see it in that pissy expression on your face. You and Ben used to date for fuck sake! The media couldn't shut up about it for months. Now they're going to spin this as if the UDF can't keep its walking, talking 10-megaton nukes in line for two seconds without the world coming apart." The general ranted.
"With all due respect, sir-"
"Cut the crap!"
"Alright, fine! How the fuck is this my fault? And don't fucking imply that you're not trying to pin this on me. I had nothing to do with this!" Emilia spoke with a stern tone.
"Listen to me like you've never listened to anyone before," the general said and pointed a finger at Emilia. "If this turns out to have anything to do with you, you're done—dishonorable discharge without pay, and that's it. You'll be lucky if I don't put you up for Renegade status while we're at it. This is your mess for all we know, and you're severely mistaken if you don't think you're cleaning it up." This interaction with the general and Emilia was not completely unfounded. They had history, both good and bad.
"I'm here, aren't I? Just tell us what we have to do." She pouted like a teenager.
"Oh, get off your high horse, Mia. Just because the retards in WarDiv parade you in skimpy outfits all over their propaganda doesn't mean you're better than anyone else here." The general finally started to calm down. Emilia kept her mouth shut. The situation was embarrassing enough without any further escalation. Besides, it would not get them any closer to resolution than this.
"Anyway, excuse me, folks. Your mission is to investigate Steelwater and find out where the asset is. You will hitch a ride with NavDiv Air Mobile from here. They'll conduct a bombing run to clear out most of the hostiles, but there will be plenty left to go around once you hit the deck. The infection has reportedly reached a new phase, of sorts, being extremely aggressive and showing mutations we haven't seen before. IntDiv suspects that it has something to do with the asset. The 'World Eaters' battalion of WarDiv will provide ground support, should you need it, but they'll be on standby on the outskirts. Don't keep them waiting for too long, though, or they'll start shelling the city with or without your order. Whoever thought it was a good idea to put all the UDF psychopaths in the same battalion needs to get their fucking head examined," he muttered. The general showed arial reconnaissance footage of Steelwater on the briefing screen in front of them. The town looked pretty banged up and depleted. It had obviously been evacuated. "Now, you've got great talent on your team here—the especially useful ones being Ms. Eun-Ji Park and Isolde Featherswallow—controversies aside. Both of them have substantial understanding of the infection in different ways. Any and all doubts concerning this new phase goes through them. Besides that, you're all leaders in your own right. Whatever happens on the ground, you take control of the situation. This group being what it is means that some may be called away, new additions may come later—that's just how this thing is designed." The general turned off the briefing screen, and the lights in the rest of the room returned. "So, grab your gear, don't forget respirators, and get topside right away. Emilia here will be responsible for your success. Direct any and all complaints to her before you pester me or anyone else."

Half an hour had passed. The order was fairly simple at this stage. As people began to clear out of the room to get their gear and weapons ready, the general pulled Emilia to the side for a few silent words."You see that young lady over there?" He said and indicated at Scylla Fleurane. "That's Tenebrean royalty—you make sure that she stays in one piece, otherwise we are truly fucked. Do you understand? There are a lot of moving parts behind the scenes." Emilia glaced at Scylla, then back at the general. "I know who it is, Jeff. Will you relax, already? I've got this, don't worry." Despite their volcanic outbursts at each other, the general had taught Emilia a great deal about leadership, tactics, and necessary philosophy for this line of work over the years. He had been a beacon away from home.

The escort provided by Navigation Division Air Mobile was fueled and ready to go. An assortment of light and heavy attack helicopters dotted the C.E.C compound surface. A single dual-rotor personnel carrier was also on standby with various soldiers hitching a ride. Air Mobile was used to picking up all kinds of stuff that needed to go in the same direction as them. While the light attack choppers could not carry additional passengers, some of the heavier gunships could take one or two people. The upside was that the gunships would only land near rooftops, which was ideal for tactical maneuvers from above or simply taking high ground. The personnel carrier would always touch ground, so there were two options to follow when riding with Air Mobile.

Post Summary
The Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group assembly meeting is held underground at Cetra East Command (CEC). Four star general Jeffery McMahon is the man in charge of this 3rd edition of the group. The identity of the missing Aeon is revealed. The general has a bit of back and forth with Emilia, resulting in her having to take responsibility for the group's success out in the field. Everyone is ordered to ready up and hitch a ride with NavDiv Air Mobile to Steelwater.

Quest Steps
The main interaction between characters here will be in the escort provided by Navigation Division Air Mobile. After the briefing, one can describe characters getting their stuff and heading for the surface—optionally, interaction can be made during this transition. So, character interaction: After the briefing, while getting gear and weapons, elevators to the surface, or boarding personnel carrier/gunship helicopters—or wherever you deem appropriate for interaction. Third option, your character moves with focus/silence. This is the very beginning of this professional partnership, so it might take some time for more reserved types to open up.

Your character can have any kind of history with Benjamin Regardie. You guys could've been on a mission together, maybe you served in the same station for a period of time, maybe you had a more personal relation with him, or no history at all. It's totally up to you. If you do write something, we will add it to his own 'character sheet' in the Codex.

I also want to remind/tell about Flashbacks. This is a way to keep interactions going in a separate part of your post even after the 'main story' has moved on. This is very useful for many reasons, but especially useful with large casts. With flashbacks, we also don't have to wait as much for people to reply, while also not limiting their character interactions. So, please, keep this in mind.

If you feel stressed out about reading a lot: remember that you don't have to read everything, unless you want to. If your character isn't part of some character interaction or Flashback, then it's fine to not know what happened there. Using post summaries can help fellow players to quickly get the gist of what happened in character interactions that they were not part of.
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Hidden 6 mos ago Post by FollowthePath
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FollowthePath FTP

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HELENA "DOVE" WESTERLY UDF: CETRA EAST COMMAND [Briefing Room] Day 1 - 05:00AM @FollowthePath


Helena “Dove” Westerly was running late as usual. She had a toothbrush sticking out between her lips while pulling on a dreaded pair of pants. She almost always wore dresses when she could get away with it, but since they’d been asked to wear the special rainbow of UDF gray, she complied. Helena finally spit the toothbrush itself out in the sink and pinched her cheeks a few times for a rosy glow before tying up her dark red hair into a lazy bun. She frantically dug for matching socks (as her preferred footwear was sandals or barefoot) and finally settled on something that looked navy blue and another that was dark purple. Good enough. She tied up the boots and took a glance at herself in a full-length mirror she’d never gotten around to hanging up. It was simply leaned against a vintage chair that she never used. Helena frowned a bit at how drab she looked, along with seeing her last name emblazoned upon the patch that was pre-sewn onto her shirt. She much preferred to go by her nickname, since her surname reminded her of her mother.

“Swarg,” Helena smirked, reading the patch that had a wolf upon it. She still had trouble believing she’d been chosen to be a part of the Special Warfare and Reconnaissance Group. Yes, she knew she was an aeon. And one who could be useful in a group setting. But she had the names of the others who had been called to the meeting running through her mind. They were all so… powerful. Violent. Special. Interesting. She tilted her head a bit, zoning out as she thought about how awkward her interactions could possibly be with the others, until she realized she was daydreaming and snapped out of it.

“Get it together, Helena,” she whispered to herself, grabbing the papers the UDF had sent her home with. She had gotten the news while working in Medical had been trying to prep for this since then. However, her nerves were still buzzing under the surface of her skin as she locked her apartment and headed out.

~


Helena sat patiently, trying her best to look wide-eyed and interested as Jeff spoke about their assignment. She was happy right off the bat that their target was to be brought in alive. However, when Jeff mentioned who they were after, Helena couldn’t help but catch her breath and glance over at Garuda. Eyes darting between the general and the well-known aeon, Helena chewed her bottom lip nervously as she watched them interact. She was just thankful the attention wasn’t on her, and what this mission was going to entail was fascinating.

Helena had not just heard of Benjamin Regardie before. He had ended up in Medical once before under her care. He’d gotten severely damaged during a mission once and was having trouble shaking it. When he arrived, he had several bits and fragments of shrapnel sticking into him, with lines of blood dripping from various injuries. His breathing had been labored and it’d been hard to get from him exactly what had happened. She didn’t need to know though. Helena rapidly began working on laying her hand on any injury he had as other medical team members removed the shrapnel. It took a good hour, but by the end of it, he was good as new. Well, minus the sweat, dried blood, and the fact he was exhausted. He hadn’t talked much to Helena as she wanted him to rest and sleep after such an ordeal, but when she went to check on him a couple hours later he was gone. A general had checked him out without letting her know. That was the longest she’d ever interacted with Bahamut.

Helena realized she’d been zoning out for a minute, so she intentionally nodded vigorously as Jeff gave them instructions. She had a little notebook and pen and began mumbling under her breath as she tried to catch the most important parts.

“Steelwater… World Eaters…psychopaths in one battalion…”

When Jeff mentioned some of the other aeons, Helena glanced up from her notebook and looked around. She knew of Isolde but avoided her like the plague. Gossip ran amuck in Medical, especially when everyone got bored, so Helena had heard of most of these aeons before, although not all of them. And what she knew, she didn’t know if it was all true or not. People did like to exaggerate. Helena was trying to keep a mental list in addition to her notebook though and tucked it in a pocket as she gingerly got up and went to go get her gear.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Salsa Verde
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EUN-JI "AMANITA" PARK UDF: CETRA EAST COMMAND [Briefing Room] Day 1 - 05:00AM @Prisk

Eun-ji wasn’t much impressed with the facilities that lay in underground, to her there were better uses of underground exploration and they mostly related to fungal and flora networks. To say she was biased was evident, but was the military not biased in their campaign for an underground base? Despite being research div she had her fair share of brush ups with the military type and they were never ones she enjoyed dealing with. Mostly from the fact they practiced and preached violence instead of science and understanding. She didn’t bother attempting to clash the two schools of thought so instead she kept her head high even in the face of disagreement. Whats more was they were asked to wear UDF colors. It wasn’t the colors Eun-Ji had an issue with so much as the outfit as a whole. Biting her nail in confusion she could help but think of edits in her head for a second design phase. “This simply won’t do” affirming her need to have some creative liberties.

Before she made head way to the meeting she ducked into one of the rooms in search of needles, scissors, and twine. Most of it she was able to find in what seemed to be a medical inventory, the rest she would have to hope she had spares in her never ending bag. Tucking her hair into a messy bun she went to work as her hands were converted from scientist to seamstress, oh how her mother would have been proud. Like clockwork she outdid what machines could do with a higher mark of precision. The shirt was more fitted to her body, but didn’t constrict around the parts where she needed to release her spores. As for the pants they were more fitted and hemmed from top to bottom, leaving her waist snug as well as her bottoms. They almost looked like capris now, but the more surface area she had exposed the more use of her spirits. The pants also had tiny gaps and holes to make them breathable and act as a vector for her abilities. The boots were a bit much, but she could customize them later or swap them out entirely. Either way she was happy with her newly modified outfit, it only need to be paired with a tiny low cut officers jacket and maybe a different camo color but overall it worked.

Perhaps a S.W.A.R.G boutique was in her future.

Wishful thinking despite being decorated with marks like a Tiger scout in 고려스카우트 연맹 or Goryeo Scout Association. Either way the wolf biting a sword was badass to her and only furthered to serve her image as a femme fatale even if none of her peers were cognizant of that yet. Eun-Ji found an empty seat in the briefing room, eyeing and sizing up her squad mates. Only two had arrived just before her, Garuda whom she fully met on the train, and another girl who seemed homely and well put together. With the lights dimming she’d be unable to see the rest of the cast amidst the shadows, so for now she would settle on hearing the brief. Immediately she made heads and tails of the old man speaking, he had every making of your archetype general from every war movie ever since the dawn of time. He was rugged, stoic, classic crew cut, big drill sergeant bravado, the works.

The map did more to captivate her than the asset in question, that was until he named who the asset was and could turn into, ultimately leading into a verbal fire fight between him and Emilia. Eun-Ji was distraught visibly and audibly, not prepared nor expecting the brief to take such a sharp and personal turn. She almost felt guilty for being privy to a conversation that should have been private; the airing of dirty laundry in a professional setting by a superior who by all accounts should have been professional was the cherry on top. What Eun-Ji didn’t learn on that train ride she surely knew now as well as everyone else in the room. After the brief was over she would have to make an appearance beside her just to ensure she was okay after that messy tirade.

Her ears didn’t perk up again until the mention of her name and that of her scientific contemporary, Isolde. Ah yes what she had desired the most, an influx of any and all data collected in transition to help with the salve to eliminate the fungus turning men and beast equally ravenous. With the meeting adjourned, Eun-Ji waited until Emilia’s talk with the general was over. Just so, Isolde passed ahead heading for the LZ. A fork in the road already presenting itself, she decided to make sure Emilia was fine before she conferred with her ResDiv partner. “That guy has some nerve. How have you managed to work under that for so long?” She asked hoping to lighten the mood.



L O R E
  • 고려스카우트 연맹 (Goryeo Scouts Association) is Goryeo’s youth movement employing the Scout method, a program of informal education with an emphasis on practical outdoor activities, including camping, woodcraft, aquatics, hiking, backpacking, and sports. Another widely recognized movement characteristic is the Scout uniform, by intent hiding all differences of social standing in a country and making for equality, with neckerchief and campaign hat or comparable headwear. Distinctive uniform insignia include the fleur-de-lis and the trefoil, as well as merit badges and other patches. The main emblem for Goryeo is a tiger. Both the modern stylized emblem and this historic emblem feature the head of a tiger. Officially it symbolizes the "bravery of Goryeon Scouts". The Goryeo Peninsula was once within the tiger's historic range; this may also be an allusion to Goryeo’s status as one of the Four Asian Tigers.

    The Tiger Scout is the highest rank and award the Scout and the Venture Scout may achieve.

    An active Air Scout program is also popular.

    The Scout Motto is 준비, pronounced jun bi, Preparation in Goryeon.

    Officially the round-shaped outer petals of the new purple fleur-de-lis are based on the taeguk, symbolizing hope of reunification of the Goryeon peninsula. A tiger head, symbolizing bravery, is also featured.

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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Rockette
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S C Y L L A " L E V I A T H A N " F L E U R A N E FARHAVEN [Motel Balcony] 03:00AM FLASHBACK@Rockette

"Tell me, Ms. Fleurane -- my lady -- do you hear voices in your head?"

She's suspended betwixt the hour of the devil and the christening of a new day, the time sacred and cursed for others burdened and systematically elated by their desires, needs, and fixations of an addling mindset -- addictions, she thinks in reconsideration. Scylla Fleurane was a vision poised against the iron of a rusted railing, elbows upon a thin shaft and fingers splayed against rouged cheeks where idle sin caught her within and without. Medical and analysts would pen it as insomnia or a troubled mind, and oh perhaps she was afflicted with a myriad of unrestful musings and qualms. She wouldn't even know where to begin to confess her woes -- if she had any, of course -- and the idea of committing herself to anyone of IntelDiv to request and admit a psych profile...

"Been there, done that." Scylla muttered offhandedly, lashes panned low as a group stumbling beneath her balcony serenaded the boulevard with bawdy love songs: forlorn lovers and bedded enemies, the kind that garnered a blush or two and a shuddered side step. Her rejoining grin was all the sweeter once the lyrics settled in and Scylla laughed, waved them on by, and ignored that wistful giggle that bubbled from her lips like an afterthought. Maybe it's the carelessness and freedom they exclude in their debauchery, or the euphoric bubble they've created for themselves in song and drink, but Scylla strains her eyesight just that much harder to watch as they list off into the night with a keenness of a predator...

It's the whimsical chime of her coms device that tugs her concentration and pulls her gaze back, towards where a blue-white light forces a beam through the gloom of her rented room of sixty Credits a night; completed with its glorious mini fridge and lurid purple duvet. The hour is late and she's not due to board a train for a few more hours, so who... There are many choices, too many that would summon her like an animal: a dog. Scylla palms the rail at her back, stretching arms and spine, listening to the glorious pop that quakes through her bones. Com devices from Tenebre are slick models, black, cases infused partially with obsidia and fortified plastics recycled from ocean waste. For try as they might, even the immaculate cycling systems that had been introduced whilst during her infancy, the Lullin Sea was prone to pollution all the same. In some ways she blamed the reactors, but alas, that was neither here or there. Scylla allowed the screen to dim and the chiming to fade, only for her late-night caller to immediately ring her back. She studies the name then and answers on a bell-chime of laughter:

"Mamae!"

Oh hello my little dove.

It's her mother, of whom she later inquires of where she's stationed, learning that she's to be dispatched to the coast of Junon Port. There's been disturbing reports, she says, whisper-soft and hushed, as if she's cradled in on herself. Weird things in the water, ships that float by unmarked. When Scylla whispers back, are you okay. She just laughs.

"We are never okay my sweet, but it's the game we play." Truer words never uttered, but Scylla studies the shadows of her room, the light from yonder creating faux specters that dance upon the walls, and says:

"I'm being dispatched as well, East Command. There's this.. New group. All Aeons." Arachnid fingers flutter in the gloom, waving away the chill at her uttered words before she scrapes her nails against the scars littering her throat. She's never worked with other Aeons. Not really. Only a few weeks at a fort or two, getting to know those just like her and not; so many faces in a sea of power and muted spirits. Hers wail and roar, dominating forces demanding recognition of some kind, only she doesn't know what they're really asking for. But her dreams.

"You know how to play well with others. I taught you that." Scylla has no answer to give, only a soft hum of confirmation. They banter back and forth, catching up on the times, for when her mother crosses over the mountains, she'll be out of coms range for at least a week. Obsidia Ridge was a cellular dead-zone and no amount of towers could harness a signal that far inland, to the deep with the corporations that argued otherwise. When the first feathering colors of dawn peak over the horizon, Scylla returns to the balcony, hand cinched to the railing, nails curling inward to the flesh of her palm. She's tense, so her mother says, plucking on the fringes of her sleepless misfortune.

"Yeah well, you would be too."

"I know," her voice goes to static, and for the first time in the night, Scylla's brow lower, her lips contort into a frown, but before she loses her connection --

"Just remember my dove, that you are --"

S C Y L L A " L E V I A T H A N " F L E U R A N E UDF: CETRA EAST COMMAND [Briefing Room] Day 1 - 05:00AM @Rockette

"...Tenebrean royalty."

It's strange, she thinks, idly maneuvering the dull edge of a shiv beneath her nails; admiring their cleanliness because hands made the soldier and the means. The term of royalty long lost its glamour from her youth where a woman with eyes of swarming moss-green wielded the title like a whip to her back. To this day, Scylla eternally feels her eyes slicing through flesh and soul, branding her the bastard and raking nails through her hair as she hummed demented lullabies. The UDF kindly reminded Scylla of her standing and importance, she was not only an Aeon, but a former Dragoon and Michael's first born despite the public denouncements. Needless to say, Tenebre made donations to the cause in mass quantities of Credits or better yet, more Dragoons. Peculiar that the UDF had not yet established a force within the inner city. Her eyes of a resolute blue-black hue never leave Emilia and Jeffrey as they exchange blows. The verbal onslaught is nothing new to Scylla, after all she's witnessed men rise up against her and her mother during their mountainous excursions, but in the back of her mind she recalls pained whispers over glass tumblers and carafes of amber liquid being passed.

The name of Benjamin Regardie -- good ole' fucking Ben -- tastes stale in her mouth, and she wonders is this what betrayal feels like. It's almost bitter. She was stationed with the Aeon some time ago, weeks holed up at the Section H - Hellon Fort, and oh shit - she remembers being on patrol and he said her name, lamenting over destiny and fate and the inevitability of those that must come to pass. Some weeks later, she would then meet Emilia...

On the train - which now seems so long ago - Scylla had gleaned through procured dossiers containing cryptic information of what her mother had described was happening on Junon Port, the closest establishment to Tenebre that they formed trade with; rights to the mines in exchange for using their docks to deploy their smaller ships. To hear of a new phase of infection, it only confirmed lingering suspicions that the malady was spreading and evolving. Scylla's eyes wondered over to those of ResDiv in cool assessment. It's only by reputation and spun stories within the dark and hidden halls from her former deployments that she's aware of those aforementioned controversies. All the more and for the best, Scylla decides she'd rather rub shoulders with those in NavDiv even if they were a bit eccentric.

She pockets the shiv in her uniformed boot and double checks her laces and reminds herself in a passing thought to request personalized gear. Even Dragoon armor was far more.. exotic. Surely S.W.A.R.G could be outfitted far more respectfully. But oh, isn't she cute, the other researcher with slightly modified wear... Scylla notes that she should put in a request with her instead. Alas, she submitted her lance to the sub-weapon division in WarDiv for routine maintenance upon her arrival and per the suggestion that she submit her firearms as well, she advised they modify her travel gear as well for aquatic proofing.

And so, first thing.

Scylla catches Jeffrey's eye, a muted exchange with a plethora of things to be left unsaid as she sees herself out from the briefing room with her path laid out clear. He doesn't have anything to say, nothing nice at least, she knows, for she was one of the last few to see Ben before... Well, before the infamous breakup. With a mock salute and fluttering lash of a wink, Scylla flips the mass of her white hair over her shoulder upon her departure. Though Emilia is engaged in talks with someone else, the fashionable delight no doubt, it doesn't stop Scylla from palming her shoulder -- she squeezes there -- in the friendliest gesture she can manage without embarrassing her any further as she follows the underground halls to gather her gear for deployment.
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Hidden 6 mos ago 6 mos ago Post by Prisk
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FLASHBACK FARHAVEN-CEC [Train] Prelude - 08:00AM @DeadDrop@Salsa Verde@Archangel89
Emilia tucked away her bag and rifle in the overhead compartment row, above the window, as Eun-ji chatted about the Research Division. Belladonna...? Hmm, oh yeah, Emberletter... that's where I recognize that name from, she thought to herself. There was always a story that the media attempted to tell, whether true or not. Emilia had gone through that storm herself, way back when the thing with Ben happened. The thing... ugh, how could I forget? Emilia scuffed underneath her breath, being sidetracked by her inner dialog as usual. "That name rings a bell, but I don't remember what she does, exactly." Emilia sat down on the comfy seats again. The rumbling and movement of the train had a soothing quality to it. There were no complications, just a straight line to follow. A smirk broke onto Emilia's lips when the elated researcher offered good flavors this early in the morning, and glasses—all in that tiny carry. I have to get me one of those..., Emilia thought.

"To the third edition, maybe?" Emilia said and raised her glass as well. She could not think of anything else. Being in the Group was not some grand aspiration of hers, but it did come with a certain prestige. At least they had a common purpose. They were all on their way towards the same destiny. That in itself was worth celebrating in this world of utter chaos and confusion—or so it seemed. Emilia swiped the whole shot and let the liquid do its thing. The usual, slightly brisk sensation caressed her throat and a hint of a frown on her face came and went within the same second. Emilia had tasted both food and liquor from Goryeo before, but this Ghost thing was something new. It was good, though. Emilia gently nodded her head and glanced at Eun-ji, as an indicator of approval. "Nice flavor. Hit me again," Emilia said and put the glass back on the narrow table between the two, facing row of seats the party currently occupied.

It was in this serene moment that some of Emilia's spirits made themselves known and visible. A slight shimmer of white and light blue slowly swirled about and around Emilia's presence. Its shape was somewhat abstract, but in certain twists and brief pauses it resembled a tiny bird of some sort. It was a playful little thing, one that Emilia knew well. It motioned towards Eun-ji and circled the girl's shoulders and head a couple of times before doing the same with Robert. The spirit, or spirits showing as one entity, eventually returned to its sanctuary and seated itself on top of Emilia's head. "I didn't expect this to happen. She usually doesn't show herself around people like this," Emilia said and broke a proper smile. When and where the spirits within decided to show themselves was quite a mystery to most people. All of it seemed random, yet deliberate. However, all of it appeared to depend on the nature of the spirits themselves. Some of them preferred calmness while others preferred strife.

Everything was interrupted by a loud entrance. Emilia's spirit quickly returned and was no longer visible. The origin of the ruckus was a familiar face, at least to Emilia. It was a man named Aaron Nyles, or 'Zephyr', as he so elegantly put himself. Emilia had run into him a couple of times over the years, exchanged some banter and gossip, but that was about it. The guy was fast, plenty fast, perhaps too fast for his own good at times. Emilia's frame jerked rather harshly at the sudden scare of Aaron's booming tone. Fuck man..., she thought to herself but lightened up right away. The guy was a blast to be around, high energy, but being an IntDiv agent made a lot of people nervous. Emilia did not mind, though—she had nothing to hide. "No, I'm the fastest, Aaron. You know this already. It's truly mind blowing that I have to remind you of this every time we meet," Emilia said with a teasing tone and frisky smirk on her lips.




EMILIA "GARUDA" LANGE UDF: CETRA EAST COMMAND [Briefing Room] Day 1 - 05:33AM @Prisk@Salsa Verde@Rockette
Emilia caught a glimpse of Helena Westerly, as the general intently spoke about who to keep in one piece and not to fuck things up. The girl was brisk on her feet, but Emilia eventually extracted what she knew about Helena from a tiny compartment in her mind. Keeping track of other Aeons and somewhat know about their profiles was a casual hobby of Emilia's. She had a pretty decent grasp of most Cetra based Guardians and even Renegades, but the ones form Anatolia were more or less unknown to her with a few exceptions. As the general concluded his brief scolding, or whatever one were to call it, Emilia found a moment to breathe. Eun-ji showed concern, which was a welcomed relief. Wait, what...? Emilia thought, as she noticed the stylish version of the hideous uniform they all had to wear on the Goryean. "Eh, he's not normally like that. But, hey—look at you, fashion. Where..-did you do this yourself?" Emilia eyed the girl up and down in the same moment as a warming and reassuring presence passed them by. Of all the Aeons present, Emilia had probably spent the most time with Scylla. They had been stationed together some years ago, not too long after Emilia's break up with Ben. That time in her life was a whole chapter by itself.
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Hidden 5 mos ago Post by Krash
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Errikos "Conductor" Rigas CEC Proper - Meeting Room NA NA
It was always a bizarre feeling entering a place like this. Having been inside for so long made him naturally long for what he felt was fresh air, nature, things that he primally was drawn to as a human at some base level. Yet ever since the comet cursed him with these gifts, he felt welcomed in a place such as this. Walking down the hallways of the CEC, Errikos could feel the hum and rhythm all around him, like a heart beat, an artificial pulse. If he closed his eyes and really focused, he could… almost… make out an electric map in front of him like a neon road map filled with information. He couldn't make out the info of course, not like some cyber sec goon running packet capture to see what was in the stream but he could follow paths, directions. It could become overwhelming if he stayed in that dream for too long. Still, where birds and a breeze afforded a sense of liveliness outside, the digital chirping that only he seemed privy too gave these complexes their own life that he could toy with. He toyed with the idea of brains too. He'd been able to harness electricity, and what were brainwaves outside of electricity? Could he manipulate those? Could he dive into someone's mind? The potential for that was haunting and almost exciting. The ideas swirling in his own mind reminded him of sci-fi films he'd seen that were laughable fantasies at one time and now something he could potentially do now.

Errikos entered the meeting room with nonchalance, his clothing wasn't customized, his pants were tucked into his boots and his sleeves were rolled up to about his forearm but they weren't done with the pristine manner of the UDF military proper. There was nothing particularly striking about him save for two metal balls that floated around his left hand that was held just forward of his thigh as if he was holding a cell phone. It looked as though he were still a bit early as there were two, what looked to be women, and one general. Others filtered in and the meeting started. Errikos wasn't really paying attention to the other Aeons just yet. He was trying to focus, almost excessively, on the mission especially since the cast members meant this was far from ordinary.

Then the argument started. Errikos said nothing, he simply watched with a mild discomfort turned amusement fitting a melodrama. The balls around his hands zipped more aggressively as the tension in the room grew. He recognized Bahamut, it'd be almost impossible not to. He was like a living comic book hero with how the propaganda painted him. Errikos didn't really follow the athlete worship of following other Aeons outside of ones he'd personally worked with but even he knew Bahamut and… consequently, Garuda who was currently exchanging a verbal fight with the general. First day and this? This will be a good story for later… or it could kill me there's that too… best not think like that. He listened intently now, trying to make mental marks so he could jot them down later, he cursed himself for being so lazy about learning about his team. Usually it didn't matter, but with this being an entirely Aeon unit, it made more sense to know the other hot shots he was working with. One or two personalities was enough, he wondered what it would be like if the whole unit was a personality, his eyes drifted towards Featherswallow as that thought touched his mind. He didn't know much about her outside of her position and the drama that the paper's published and, while he wasn't trying to judge her unfairly, he was going to avoid her if possible.

As the meeting concluded, Errikos zipped away, catching a whiff of a sentence without really knowing its implications. "…are truly fucked. Do y…." It sounded like it came from the general judging by the tone but he couldn't be sure. What was the problem? Was Bahamut that big of a deal or was there something else? The UDF usually played that way, everything seemed like a shell game where everyone is watching the shells spin and move but seemingly only the tops in IntDiv actually knew where the pea was and what the real reason behind everything was. Errikos tried to brush it off as a topic to think about later. In the meantime he made his way towards the armory. He noted some of the others from the meeting doing the same. He grabbed what was needed. He wouldn't be playing in the sand as aggressively as the others so he grabbed a pump action grenade launcher, a compact PDW with a not so compact suppressor, an electrified telescoping baton, a portable drone, and a smattering of tools and tricks he enjoyed using and felt would be worthwhile.

After a while he had a combat pack and a haversack loaded with goodies and was on his way up to the surface. He wasn't going to go into the fun zone with the others and instead opted for the rooftop landing with a gunship. The pad was abuzz with staff that weren't going with them but were rather supporting them, mostly NavDiv logistics that were topping off the birds with ammo, gas, brakelight fluid, fuzzy dice, whatever… There was already a decent amount of noise so when the Conductor boarded the gunship, he didn't say anything to the door gunner he passed but rather just nodded and gave a thumbs up before grabbing a seat inside. He could already feel the nervous energy spinning up and his right foot bopped up and down on its toes to release some of it.

Post Summary / Direction
Errikos entered the room with two metallic ball bearing sized orbs floating around his hands, didn't speak during the meeting went to grab his gear, and is now on one of the gunships that will make a rooftop landing. He found some amusement in the argument, and picked up the tiniest fragment from the conversation between the General and Garuda.
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AARON “ZEPHYR” NYLES UDF: CETRA EAST COMMAND [Briefing Room] Day 1 - 05:00AM @Prisk@Salsa Verde@Rockette

Aaron never really liked dealing with the Warfare Unit too much. They were all too strict and rule driven, save for Garuda, he couldn’t stand the lot of them. As he let out an exaggerated yawn scratching the back of his head he could see the rest of S.W.A.R.G. lining up in true military fashion. As the general went through his long and exhausting briefing, most of which he knew since he gathered a great deal of this info, Aaron paid little mind to most of the info presented and focused more on the people gathered. While he had met most of the Group in previous scenarios he never truly paid any mind to most. As he lazily turned to look at the general he couldn’t help but break him down as he prattled on. McMahon looked like what you would expect a five-star general to look like, grizzled face, hardened exterior, absolutely no personality, a regular snooze fest. He almost did in fact doze off until he heard the words,

"Benjamin Regardie, code name 'Bahamut'."

It took him a minute to piece it all together but as he rather blatantly stepped out of formation and looked down the line and saw the look of pure and total embarrassment on Garuda’s face, the lightbulb went off,

"BWAHAHAHHAHHAHHA, HAHAHAHAHHHAHAA, HEHEEHEEHHHEHEHHE!!"

Aaron knew that he would later regret this spontaneous outburst later down the line but in the moment he couldn’t help but let out the uproarious laughter that echoed throughout the hanger. He heard the general and Gar attempt to hash things out but he was no longer listening as he walked off to get himself geared up.

~


It took Aaron several minutes to finally calm himself from his laughing fit as he got himself out of that tacky digital camo and into his usual IntDiv attire. As he strapped his Nakamasa to his hip he turned his head and and saw Emilia talking to some others and couldn’t help but go and give Lange some good natured ribbing,

"So, Gar…is this mission just another story of lovers coming together after a spat, or are you really done with him? I mean, I’ve worked with Hamu a time or two and he can be a real pain in the neck huh?"



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