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Wukong


"Fable Doesn't Get To Be The Only One With Subtext Under Their Header!"


Fashionably Late To The Police Station





Why was she one of the only ones usually left behind to drive off the monsters?

Why did her esper form have the peculiar yet incessant mental side effect of making her feel like an excited monkey swinging in the trees?

Why did she suddenly have a craving for peaches?

Too many silly questions to ponder in the grand scheme of things otherwise, but there was no time to think about them in all honesty. She channeled all of her focus into blitzing toward the site of the mission, to catch up with the rest of the agents and get to work. Well, and the Freelancers. The briefing had made things crystal clear...if not herself ever so slightly more empathetic toward Binky. Yet a pincer movement, hitting the enemy from both sides and crushing them in like a trash compactor, felt fitting if not reminiscent of something. One of the older movies she'd seen at the base, perhaps? She knew it was something one of the staff had lent her a few weeks ago to watch after geeking out about it to her during casual conversation.

All the same, however, each role in this sort of thing had its purpose. So driving off the monsters wasn't a terrible lot, but it was an important one to ensure the mission went off as simply as possible. Couldn't have something coming out of the shadows and rushing the prison amidst all the excitement there. To that end she had performed her first role, and wanted to get in on the action as soon as she could with the rest of her allies. She didn't want to leave them alone to-

”We’re trying to preserve the police station. Was that part of the briefing too difficult to understand, Leroux?”

”Mind your melodies, agent. You’re not a freelancer.”
The Chief Abuser Of Binky's


Aaaaand things were beginning to really get messy, weren't they? Crap. But she was just coming around the corner where she'd be able to see the station now. It was a small thing she was thankful for, but seeing Valkyrie zipping up the wall from a gaping hole on the second floor as she approached the younger agent decided to follow. If nothing else to help try to support her ally whilst keeping an eye out on things as she herself approached. There was no sense in getting shot if she could help it.

Though if there was one thing she actually knew about a cornered animal, even in a basic sense and from various sources, it was that it made it even more dangerous than it already was. Far more, depending on the snake.

Lilliah's magic surged as she cast a melody as she closed in on the building, and with a surge of wind she flew up into the air with the intent of getting up to the building's roof near Valkyrie's location. At least before the melody began to wear off, she hoped. From there she could swing down in through a window or something, but getting up there was her first main matter of concern. Secondary to that was the ever-present goal of 'not getting shot'.

I've really gotten addicted to watching Gundam Build Fighters and Gundam Iron-Blooded Orphans that I really want to make Mobile Suits...


tfw no one notices TwT

lol

I jest, I jest.
Leannah





The catgirl frowned slightly at the mention of just telling Lazhira the truth about, well, the girl herself. Yes they owed it to Lazhira to be honest with her, but at the same time it was not something that would likely sit well with anyone. Learning you were made simply to hide a key? Learning your whole existence was not that of a living thing, but basically to hide something? Exestential crisis city, if not worse. To that end, the catgirl let out a long sigh as she nodded back to Narkissa. It was about as much as she could do at this point for the most part, as after sitting there listening to Narkissa in turn that last burst of energy to talk seemed to fizzle right out.

Still...

"What if telling her...also...causes something bad? Imagine...damn..."

Leannah felt a yawn force itself out from her throat after she spoke, and likewise her eyes began to feel heavier than they perhaps should have. It was natural, but she was trying to fight it simply to say something. However, she couldn't fight sleep and exhaustion and so forth forever. Far from it, actually, though she feared things would go to hell if she tried to get any shut-eye. All the same, ignoring it was just as foolish right now after all she'd been through.

In that vein her compatriot was most correct indeed.

"...You're right...need...sleep...talk....later....but...wake me......if....things......go........bad......."

The catgirl's eyelids fluttered shut as the last word drawled out of her mouth, barely legible but enough for Narkissa to hopefully get the point: 'Wake me if things go bad.' A last little message in case, well, in case things went to crap whilst she slept. Perhaps she was overthinking it still, but all the same the reality of gods and monsters and so forth in this world made knowledge that much more dangerous. What if Lazhira reacted very badly to it? What if she tried to open the seal then, or called them all crazy or lied to and kicked them out? What if the Goddess of Conflict made use of Lazhira in that time, pushing her in the direction that would most quickly open that seal?

So many what-if's, and Leannah herself felt there were far too many for her to handle at the moment. At least, to handle alone. So much she didn't know, so much she didn't have a say in, and now this accursed knowledge she'd acquired that opened up the truth but felt like it simultaneously made a can of worms or worse out of the rest of it.

Still, her mind grasped once last time at a small something in her mind as consciousness faded into some much needed rest-

'Goddess...Auset-Kythet...what do...I don't know...what to do...this...'

A tiny attempt at a prayer, as sleepily and exhaustedly delivered as it was, sprung from her worry. Whether it was answered or anything happened or not, however, the catgirl would finally and fully fall asleep before Narkissa's eyes.

Comfort under the veil of unconsciousness would be a small bit of solace, perhaps, before some tough decisions would need to be made.

@Rune_Alchemist@Click This
The Xandalian Republic


The Meeting Place


"War of the White Roses"





It was enough that the ECU and Undefeated had thrown themselves into a war against the Zetans before. Even now, the Xandalians were sending supplies and volunteers to the Zetans to try to assist them in some manner or another in recovery in the long term. It was an attempt to make good on their word, a genuine effort. In all of this, they had hoped that the peace would manage to last for some time longer before anything else erupted. Humanity had just rediscovered its scattered remnants, and it was a time they should have been using to talk and try to figure out some things...among which the inevitable and big question of 'what happened to the Gateway network 300 years ago?'

And yet, humanity also remained true to its roots in a particular way as well it seemed.

Civil War.

The ECU had thrown themselves into a gambit against the Zetans, and Republic Intelligence spoke in detail about the growing unrest on their homeworld. People fed up with the seeming repression they'd been held under, given more room to 'wiggle' when their 'police' had been pulled away to fight a meaningless war. Yet thing had finally exploded onto the forefront of things, and the Oligarchs were losing their grip. It was a tragic occurrence the Republic would have refrained from for the most part...save for the 'beneficial' opportunity it presented.

An ECU which might be more peaceful and willing to talk due to those in charge. An ECU government that might be more apt to remain neutral in some matters and perhaps less likely to impulsively start conflicts beyond themselves. An ECU society that would be undergoing years of reform, requiring investment and support to help keep stable and so forth.

Did not not sound more pleasing to the ear? Did it not sound far preferrable than potentially letting a set of more unstable leaders create issue in the future?

The anti-ECU propaganda campaign hadn't petered out in its effects yet, with most of the public had seemingly been stirred into a froth about what the Oligarchs had done to the Zetans. Their Envoy was talking to a representative of the ECU at the very least, trying to answer some questions, and in that vein perhaps peaceful talks would be more possible now so more than before. The prior war hadn't fully petered out of the picture either, the civil war simply being added to the consequences of what was going on. It was a mess and a mix of things, including getting word that the Matuvistans had already sent in forces to help put down the rebellion, but at the same time the potential for getting things rolling was clear.

The people there had made their message as clear as day to the Xandalian Senate. A new government, one that did not send them into meaningless wars. Yet they were being terrorized, shot, and suppressed in order to achieve the ultimate goal of their silence.

All it took was a single meeting of the Senate, presenting the intelligence findings and data they had been able to acquire in the past while. From there things had been clear as crystal.

Envoy Christensen would soon find a message in his inbox to speak with the Zetans. Likewise, Executive Officer Garand would find himself awoken once more in the middle of the Xandalian night as an urgent phone call once again reached his ears. Even Commander Walton Varitian would find himself on the receiving end. Other messages would be disseminated in turn as well, but all were direct orders from the senate.

The current state of the military's mobilization, stalled after the sudden ending of the Zetan War after the announcement of Xandalian support for the Zetans, would recommence in full. Preparations of the Reorganized Xandalian Grand Fleet would be continued. Media outlets would be provided an amount of information and some footage and ilk that would 'happen to leak' from ECU space. Humanitarian aid and evacuation ships would be prepared in greater depth. The Xandalian Gateway would continue to be secured with preparatory measures and further defensive measures to be installed. Home protection forces, ones which would remain at home, were put on a higher state of alert as well.

The gears were turning.

The winds were shifting.

The smell of blood in the water was present, the sound of cries in the night lingering, but care and caution had to be taken in this case.

The buildup could be justified as lingering from the old declaration easily.

All that would be left would be to survey the scene politically and act as needed.

All Hail The Republic.

@Irredeemable




Xandalian Space


"War of the White Roses: A Thorn Emerges"





The secure line crackled with static for a moment in the cockpit, requiring only a minute adjustment before the voice on the other end rang out as clear as crystal.

"This is Nest to Mother Hawk, is your clutch ready?"

The dark-skinned man in the cockpit every so slightly grinned, lowly chuckling before leaning back into his seat as he gripped the controls and connected to the system. The lights on the interior of his cockpit lit up like a Christmas tree as the boot-up process kicked in and the mech sprung to life. Five others nearby would also spring to life equally as fast. That was their signal, clear as day.

"Read you loud and clear, Nest. Clutch is hatched, fully fed, and are preparing for flight lessons."

The voice on the other end did not let out so much as a chuckle. Rather, it simply droned on in the same official voice that the man had heard so many times before. However, this time was definitely different than before. No, it was exciting to say the very least.

"Affirmative, Mother Hawk. Proceed with flight lessons at 0200 hours beyond-nest time, and deploy feather coat to ensure you stay warm for the flight. If you fall too far from the tree, however, you cannot expect assistance. In such a case you must destroy the eggshells."

"We are all well aware, Nest. Eggshells will be removed in full if we fall too far away."

The risks were well-known, but their mission was a simple one. Nothing too big or fancy, just some looking about and poking at a few things where needed. Should things go under, they knew what needed to be done.

It wasn't their first rodeo by any stretch of the imagination either. Was a new place though.

"...And good luck, Sergeant Valens. For the Republic."

"For the Republic."

@Tortoise







The Meeting Place


"New Arrivals"





Another new arrival? At least they used Old English. Used to be the common international language way far back, made sense to try it on a first contact at least.

Even so, Envoy Valeris lightly shook her head back and forth, a long sigh hissing out from between her tired lips.

She'd barely sat down at her desk after all of the moving in, and already she was going to be busy. Made sense, but she'd at least hoped for a drink before any other new nations popped out of the woodwork. The woman had been moved in to act as a redundancy and secondary Envoy to handle the workload...at least after the attempted assassination fiasco. Also in case Christensen got himself shot the next time. If there was a next time. The Republic was far from keen about the matter of an Envoy being shot at so brazenly in a neutral space, and even the security measures in their area of the station had been increased.

Still, the new guys at least had some kind of style. Either that or they were complete idiots.

So she'd just have to see what happened.

The Envoy pressed a button on her desk.

"Yes, Envoy Valeris?"

"Send a broadcasted message to the new arrival, inviting them to speak with us at the station in turn."

That would also give her enough time to take a swig of something. Not enough to ruin a meeting, but juuuuust a small shot of something to soothe the nerves. Preferably some of that derrin root vodka, stuff kicked like a horse and might help her perk back up at least.

@Liotrent


@BrokenPromise@ERode

It is done. Finally. Stuff like the Leitmotif might need balancing better, but that is one reason I am happy to submit the app for GM review. Yes. XD

Whew.
@Liotrent

Approved! You can drop them in the char tab and start posting whenever.

It'll be interesting to see how a more normal, science-focused nation reacts to all the weirdness of the other colonies. We've got clones, cyborgs, and... whatever the ECU counts as, I guess.


And Gundams. Xandalians have a LOT of Gundams. XD
Leannah





The catgirl focused as best she could on Narkissa's words, though some reactions along the way were perhaps a given. Narkissa making contact with the goddess who'd brought them here was one matter that raised her eyebrows for a moment, as did their encounter with The Illuminator as well. Her compatriot's words about Novak, the man who'd been with them on the trip it seemed, were not rather encouraging though. Yet the deal struck there with The Illuminator, however, seemed to make little sense. Help find the orb? Really? It was a contradiction of what she'd learned, and something felt fishy enough about that at its core anywho. The very issue with the cultists was also something of note, bringing a frown to Leannah's face as she pondered what it meant in regards to her own suspicions about the mad god.

It seemed they were in quite a predicament indeed, at the very least!

Still, as Narkissa finished and her own turn came up, the catgirl gave a nod and would only speak where she and Narkissa could hear. She would relate in detail her story about praying to Auset-Kythet and the response, as well as mission, given to her by the cute bird goddess. The golden feather would be shown as proof before being hidden back in the, ah, 'location' she'd been keeping it hidden in. She would speak about her adventure in the temple after falling into the pit, from getting up to heading into the library and all of the puzzle solving. She would even show Narkissa the torn journal page she had acquired, before tucking the page back safely away on her own person and hidden carefully within the picture book.

She would recount her eventual contact with The Illuminator, and how in trying to keep him busy she had goofed up and gotten stuck in a game of sorts to learn about The Illuminator's history. She'd relate the whole of the origin story of The Illuminator in turn as well, and what she'd faced that nearly caused her to turn herself into a furry pile of ash. She'd relate the story about the Sage and her conversation with the Sage, and how she'd ended up inadvertently making a statue for the mad god. She'd relate what looked like an engine and the things seen in his divine realm once she got the door open, and how she'd passed the challenge.

But most of all...

"...And this last part is the most important. True to his word, I was given my chance to ask him a question and get a full answer to it. So I asked him what his plans were, full detail, including if Lazhira was involved. Full disclosure.

What I am telling you are the facts I learned. I wanted to ask you to keep this part most of all a secret because...it is big. I don't know everything going on in this village, what's been done, what is being done, etc. I have far from the full story, and it feels like I skipped to the end of the book for the bombshell reveal that no one would believe."


The catgirl took a deep, long breath, mentally preparing herself to say. Auset-Kythet give her strength for this.

"The goddess who summoned us here, the one you prayed to, is Delphiti. Further, the village is placed on top of a seal, one sealing away a part of Delphiti she cut out of herself a long time ago to help save humanity and the world...this part, this aspect she cut out of herself, is literally Delphiti as a Goddess of Conflict. A Goddess of Conflict who has a deep-seated hatred of humanity, and if unsealed has a high but not one-hundred-percent chance of wiping out humanity. When Lazhira mentioned that 'a seal was made' or something a few nights ago, that was what was meant by that bit and was sealed away.

Delphiti wants to take back in this part of herself again, thinks she can control it from the sounds of it. But it is no guarantee. The Illuminator, as much of a pure, unadulterated dick as he can be and probably has been from the sound of things, wants to keep the seal shut because the destruction of humanity would ruin his fun and interests. Not so much good as looking out for himself, but humanity benefits somewhat. However, he is also very angry at all of us that came over from Earth. Hates our meddling with things, according to his own words, and it was easy to tell this anger runs deeper than just amounting to words. I wonder if his influence in the village keeps the seal intact, and so losing his grip here hurts it or something? Maybe. Can't see how 'meddling' on our part would hurt here unless we were causing harm to his plans to keep the seal shut by some means.

I wouldn't put it past The Illuminator to kill half the village if it meant keeping his grip on the seal intact, of that I am more than sure, and he wants to keep the keys to the seal separated and hidden. So having someone help him look for the orb is suspicious at best, because he knows where both keys are. Like maybe some part of himself decided to do its own thing? He is a literal Frankenstein's monster, wouldn't put it past him to be able to break off parts to be in multiple places at once, and his mind is literally a mesh of dead gods. Or maybe it could be the influence of this sealed Goddess of Conflict to cause such a thing or otherwise around here. I don't know, that small bit is conjecture and theory more than anything."


Leannah shook her head, before attempting to sit up again for a second. The strain and tiredness and pain was enough that she would ultimately give up, however, and settle back down. At the least her burns felt better with whatever Lazhira had applied.

"So basically we are caught in the middle of something more 'interesting' than I wish we'd ever come across. Because you're right, completely right, that 'interesting' feels more like a bad thing these days than a good one. Like a curse.

Should the two keys come into contact with each other at all, or likely The Illuminator's grip on the seal fades too much as well, the dangerous part of Delphiti will be released. A Goddess of Conflict unleashed. Humanity is potentially very doomed in such a case, or potentially might not be doomed alternately, and we don't know for sure which result would happen.

Should the seal's integrity be threatened by our actions, somehow, we will get on the bad side of The Illuminator and what would seem to be his cultists you ran into. With the seal seemingly at stake already, and Delphiti wanting to pop it open, I'd venture The Illuminator is already doing things around here to keep the keys and the seal secure. Or trying to. Doesn't explain the paradoxical request to help him find it though, and that is the most fishy and suspicious part of it all. Feels like more than a potential ploy, that is what my gut feeling says."


Leannah grimaced as she moved to the final part, her hands clenching so tight her knuckles began to turn white again.

"But most of all, do not let Lazhira get her hands on the orb or tell her any of what I am about to say. Ever. Not even a touch. And don't let Delphiti or anyone get their hands on Lazhira or know this. It will put her in far more than harm's way, it could maybe kill her, Narkissa...kill her.

...Because the second key to the seal just treated my burns, gave me some food and a hug, and walked away to leave us here in this room to ourselves. Because for some reason, the second key is herself seeking out the first one to 'keep it safe' without knowing the true ramifications. Because it is likely, according to The Illuminator's information, she has been affected by the influence of the Goddess of Conflict...and who knows what other people as well since.

With that in mind, I am not sure anyone would believe what I learned, what I have just told you, or any of it. Could make us look suspicious, crazy, or worse depending on what is going on around here for all I know. The Illuminator knows this, he smirked and questioned what I'd do with all of this information, and so it is a sure guarantee this all could result in bad things happening if we go about blabbing this to people. Do not tell Lazhira especially, as I am not sure how she'd take it all...I don't want to hurt her, but I want to keep her safe.

I want to keep us both alive and safe as well, as best as I can."


The catgirl looked over at her compatriot, eyes filled with some sadness and enough anxiety as it was. She cared about Narkissa, that much was sure, and enough about their own lives to talk about the matter in its fullness and truth to Narkissa alone right now. She did not want to see the village and humanity exterminated, nor the two of them and Lazhira die. Tragedies like this, or so it felt like one, never ended on a perfect note. There was never a perfect solution, though a most correct one could perhaps be found if they played their cards right. Hopefully.

"And that is all I know. Everything, the whole tale of what happened to me and what I learned and all of the details to boot.

Part of me wonders if we can do anything, get anyone to help, cut a deal with Delphiti or something, or...I don't know. Truth be told I can barely keep my eyes open, and it has been a lot to deal with before being spat out of some god's 'divine realm' and into a pile of snow in the woods. Then I found you and Lazhira talking on some stumps."


@Click This
Rider


Fuyuki Park

- TO -

Miyama Town





Saving innocent lives. If that was the sole focus of his master then it was respectable at least....but also a total fool's errand when within the bounds of a warzone. Not yet had the fighting begun in earnest, but this child did not understand the very nature of war. Never mind if this boy was a magus or not, used magecraft or not, and has mystic codes or not. They were a simple tool in this matter, as with any weapon, but even the best weapons and tools could not alone save a fresh soldier should he face a far more veteran opponent. Had he even been engaged in battle against a foe? Had he seen devastated villages and dying people left at his feet, following the trail of pursuit back to his enemies?

A hero's world was not that of white-knighted and naïve idealism, but fighting for what could be saved and what could be done to achieve victory. Even he knew this much.

If you held yourself responsible for all the innocent lives in wartime, you would go inevitably mad in time. It was a most naïve wish, one that could bode even worse fates lied before the magus if he kept on this path. The heroic spirit felt it in his bones. Even he did not wish devastation upon this place. The people here had done naught but live their lives. But all the same, nothing came without a price. It was bloody, ruthless, and even when pride and honor were on the line it was never pretty. But he would do his duty and follow his compassion upon this poor soul all the same.

This young one who knew not the horrors of war, he prayed that he would be able to teach him. He would need to speak with the boy at some point, really, but for now the boy seemed to be content trying to run off and do as he pleased.

'If this person you wish to meet is found yet turns hostile, your equipment will mean nothing. Be prepared for anything, young one, and I will be by your side for whatever comes at this next location."

And so he would follow along close to his master, all whilst remaining in his spiritual form.

@Letter Bee

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