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Kiran

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Posts posted by Kiran


  1. image.png.8c961a72121d1ad09c96da1fff1930c5.png

    Aleiss

    Pride Camp

     

    “Thank you,” Aleiss said, joining the redhead. “Ella,” they repeated to help it stick in their mind. Had it been that obvious that they’d missed it the first time? Embarrassing, but it wasn’t something they had to worry about now. They took their own slice of bread and spread some cheese over it; it was okay. Not the best bread they’d ever tasted, but satisfyingly dense. “Just use any pronouns for me. Switch it up, if you can. I don’t mind.” 

     

    Ella hadn’t slowed the deluge of information, but at least now Aleiss was more prepared to follow along with it. They were still tired, having just gotten up and feeling the slowness of sleep, but they were able to catch most of it. A Queen? Seemed a little pretentious- there couldn’t have been more than two dozen people living in the hamlet, and from the sounds of it there were a lot fewer. Whatever, Ella hadn’t told Aleiss to call her ‘her Majesty’ or anything, so they’d just keep talking to her like normal unless they were told to stop. 

     

    Well, questions. They were sure they had plenty of those, given that they had just arrived at a mysterious new place. When they tried to come up with one to start with, though, their mind came up blank and they said the first thing that came to fill the empty space. “What’s the Wi-Fi password?”  

     

    Stupid question, obviously. They didn’t even have their phone, a fact that they noticed and lamented at every moment. They kept feeling the lack of a familiar weight in their pocket, reaching for it in panic, and then remembering. 

     

    They scrambled to think of a better question. “Do you know what kind of drugs they used to force me to shift? Side effects, at least? I could maybe try to figure out how it works, if I had a pen and paper. Or, better question, did the scientists leave my drugs -- I mean, any medication for me?” They still hadn’t asked any of the important questions, but at least they’d gotten closer. 
     


  2. Zagreus

    Allies: Caspian, Noelle, Zephyr, Doppio

    Status: Uninjured

    Weapon: Stygius, Blade of the Underworld

    Location: Sector 1

     

    Caspian doesn’t seem entirely convinced by Zagreus’ words about who he was or where he came from, but Zagreus doesn’t press. He doesn’t know what’s so hard to believe about it, but Caspian hadn’t outright denied him.

     

    Besides, he was far too distracted by Caspian’s next words to worry about the possibility of Caspian not believing him. What a delightful response! His smile widens and he places a hand to his chest before bowing slightly. “Glad to be of service, sir,” he says, not to be outdone. “And to you as well -- I can’t imagine better company in this strange place.” 

     

    He listens to Caspian’s description of his homeland, eager to hear all he can. He had, truly, never really thought about the damage his cousin caused to mortal lands; Ares had always been such a help to him. He wasn’t blind to how warfare killed people, of course. Plenty of shades had arrived in the House due to death in battle, and of course there was Achilles. It’s the way of the world, for humans to fight and die. Still, it’s sad to think about how it affected the people left behind. He nods, more serious than he had been before. “It sounds beautiful,” he says. “Still, I would like to visit it someday, even the less vacation-worthy spots.” He doesn’t mean anything by his words -- he merely wishes to see as much of the world as he can. 


    He laughs; it seems that they won’t be leaving the blob creature so quickly after all. “Are you so sure, Caspian? It seems to me as though you’re the one that collected a companion.” 

     

    He reaches back to grip the handle of Stygius, just to make sure the weapon is there and waiting. The Infernal Arm hums in his grip and he releases it, letting his arm fall forward. Normally he would travel by running and dashing, eager to get through the Underworld as quickly as possible, but out of consideration for Caspian he walks. 

     

    There’s so much to see while they walk, but Zagreus can’t help but look directly at the sun. It burns, but it’s just so bright. It’s so amazing to see -- he knew he would one day, but he’s finally made it and it's almost hard to believe. 

     

    and passed me by


  3. Jowan 

    f4r0Deq.gif

    Allies: Duke, Raine, Natsuki, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight, Antoni, Sorey and co., Tsuki
    Location: Gateway 

     

    At least Duke was excited by Kelsier’s presence. Jowan wasn’t entirely sure how he felt or should feel about that. Jealous? Hurt, that Duke didn’t care enough about his discomfort to be bothered as well? Whatever the feeling was, it wasn’t pleasant and left him with a bitter pang in his chest. 

     

    To distract himself, he started flipping through the papers again. Feruchemy -- he’d seen that. Sure enough, the Terris were mentioned in the section about Feruchemy. He’d have been able to find it eventually if he hadn’t given in and asked Kelsier. Feruchemy sounded like it could be powerful, but the amount of set-up that went into it seemed so limiting. He didn’t really get why the Lord Ruler was so much more scared of Feruchemy than Allomancy, but then, he’d never been smart enough to figure that kind of thing out. 

     

    The part about selective breeding… that was uncomfortably relatable. “That’s familiar,” he said, despite not having meant to speak. Mages weren’t allowed to have families either. There was nothing so horrid as a ‘breeding program’ for non-mages, but the loss of prestige for families that produced mages and the social pressure against them was high enough to be similar. 

     

    He only looked up from the papers when Giorno called out. Thank the Maker, and excuse to look at something other than the papers or Kelsier. His eyes widened at the sight of Giorno growing a second arm -- no, the arm was incorporeal? It didn’t really look incorporeal, but it didn’t look entirely real, either. It didn’t disturb his clothes, almost as though it was a ghost that had been hiding inside his body. Eerie.

     

    The extra arm was strange, but the bug that grew in Giorno’s hand was a little disturbing. It looked like a beetle, but no beetle could get that big naturally. It reminded Jowan of the giant spiders that kept infesting the lower levels of the Circle. Apparently he couldn’t blame everything in the multiverse on demons, but the comparison was there and he didn’t like the association. The thing had so many legs and he didn’t really fancy the idea of one crawling on him. 

     

    He may have squeaked a little when it flew. 

     

    Natsuki moved without hesitation to give Giorno one of their hairs, and Jowan supposed that he should trust the senior agent, but he didn’t like the idea of just handing over part of his body for someone to track him with. He’d worked so hard to escape from that. It was a bit different though, wasn’t it? It wasn’t blood magic, for one, and unlike with his phylactery he’d have control over it. If he did need to destroy the creature Giorno made for him for whatever reason he’d be able to. That thought was comforting, so he lifted a hand to his head and, after another moment of hesitation, pulled a hair free.
     


  4. image.png.8c961a72121d1ad09c96da1fff1930c5.png

    Aleiss

    Pride Camp

     

    At the sound of the nanny braying, Aleiss pivoted back around. They hadn’t expected it to charge at them; they had expected it to be satisfied when they had turned and walked in the other direction. Clearly they didn’t know enough about goats. An overly-muscled redhead came out of nowhere and tackled the goat before Aleiss could move out of the way, then introduced herself. 

     

    “Okay,” said Aleiss, struggling to process the surprise deluge of information. They would have been fine if they’d been prepared, but being given several pieces of information when they hadn’t been prepared for English and had still been thinking about how much they wanted to read the Wikipedia article on goats was too much. They’d missed the redhead’s name entirely, which was unfortunate because they didn’t want to ask and look like they hadn’t been paying attention. They didn’t even know how they were supposed to reply to the redhead, hence the ‘okay’. Normally the standard response would be to reply with their name, but they couldn’t do that if the redhead already knew it. Their whole script was thrown off and they felt as though they were floundering. 

     

    “Uh, yes,” they said. “Food, I mean. Thank you.” Ugh, that wasn’t right, but the words were already out of their mouth. They were hungry, once they cared to notice. That made sense, since they hadn’t been given anything to eat the night before (to keep them from throwing up and drowning in their sleep, they assumed). 
     


  5. Natsuki

    bxaBa3J.gif

    Allies: Duke, Raine, Jowan, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight, Antoni, Sorey and co., Tsuki
    Location: Gateway 

     

    Natsuki felt… happier than they should have at Raine’s support and choice to come with them. They’d been noticing that a lot recently, it seemed, and no wonder; Raine was excellent at everything she did. Even her handwriting was nice, far better than Natsuki’s own blocky letters. It made reading her notes or hand-written paperwork much easier, and Natsuki appreciated how seriously Raine took everything. 

     

    “I’m glad that’s settled,” Natsuki said. They weren’t entirely satisfied with the people assigned to the mission; Antoni had just arrived and, in their opinion, shouldn’t be allowed to go. They had stacks of paperwork, rules, and policies to go over with new agents (not that most of them seemed to care) and Antoni hadn’t had a chance to be vetted or settle in yet. The trip to the marketplace had involved nearly-arrived agents as well, and that had turned into a mess. It wasn’t their place to say any of that, however, and they could trust Twilight to keep the group together.

     

    “Your Tsuki will be invaluable on this mission, Rayla; it’s good that you’re going,” Natsuki continued, feeling somewhat awkward. They weren’t entirely sure whether they were supposed to be addressing Tsuki or Rayla. In their mind, Tsuki was similar to the dogs; a full member of the team and able to understand human speech, but still someone that stayed with their handler and understood their handler best. It wasn’t expected that they speak to the dogs directly in most situations, but Tsuki wasn’t exactly the same as a dog. The dogs, as intelligent as they were, couldn’t speak directly to anyone but their handler. 

     

    They watched Gold Experience work, fascinated, though they couldn’t see the Stand itself. They weren’t overly interested in magic in general, but the way Giorno’s creations went through their life cycles to reach their final form was interesting, like a time lapse video. They almost wished they could study it. “Of course,” they said, plucking out a strand of their hair and holding it out towards Giorno. While they wouldn’t have trusted Giorno’s Stand as a sole tracker, having another option to make sure everyone was where they were supposed to be was an excellent idea. 
     


  6. I've got this in their sheets, but for clarification:

    Tenebris speaks Brazilian Portuguese because it's their first language and they spoke it at home, English because they lived in America for most of their life, and some Latin because they're a nerd and studied it in university. Aleiss knows German and English because they lived in Germany. Their spoken English has an accent and sometimes they move too fast and can't remember words in time, but they've spent so much time on English websites that their written English is pretty much perfect.

     

     


  7. image.png.8c961a72121d1ad09c96da1fff1930c5.png

    Aleiss

    Pride Camp

     

    Aleiss blinked at the… ewe? Were female goats called ewes? That didn’t sound right, and she was sure that there was another word for them, but she couldn’t remember what it was. Whatever, it wasn’t important. She didn’t know much about goats, but it was more than obvious that the mother goat didn’t want her near the kid (as tiny and cute as it was). "Yo, goats." She wasn’t particularly worried, as the goat merely looked like it wanted to defend her kid, so Aleiss blinked and looked away from the goat (instead staring at the wall of a hut) before slowly backing away. Blinking at looking away was polite, wasn’t it? It was for cats, anyway, and goats were prey animals, so Aleiss figured that goats wouldn’t like being stared at either. 

     

    Once she was sufficiently far away for the goat to stop worrying she pivoted on the ball of one foot, flinging the other leg out to give her momentum for the spin, and started walking in the other direction. The goat -- nanny! A female goat was a nanny -- had effectively managed to cut off half of what she could explore. Shame. Why wasn’t anyone else around? Clearly there were people living in the little hamlet. There were fresh footprints on the ground, from shoes, various cats, and a pair of bare feet. Maybe everyone else was reasonable enough to still be asleep. 
     


  8. 4NU5Q8b.jpg

    Tenebris

    Pride Territory

     

    Truth be told, Tenebris wasn’t much of a fan of hunting. They saw the necessity of it, yes, but actually participating in the act? They would never call themself squeamish, but the feeling is close. Bones crunching in their mouth -- it’s all too violent and visceral. Animals were cute, and murdering them in such an up close and personal way? They’d rather just stick to a vegetarian diet as much as possible. It didn’t really fit with the edgy image they tried to cultivate, but it did fit in with their ideology. 

     

    Still, they had to do something with their time, and they didn’t want to be in camp helping with the gardening (as calming as it was). The night before had been unpleasant; they’d been convinced that everyone had been watching them, judging them and expecting them to slip up. Not that they cared about what anyone else thought! It just wasn’t worth it. 

     

    So, they’d decided to go exploring, once again in their animal form. What they were looking for, they weren’t entirely sure. Berry patches, mostly, but water sources, odd rocks, and interestingly shaped trees were fair game as well. Chetalla and Samual claimed to know everything of importance in the area, having been there for so long already, but Tenebris doubted that they understood how important good rocks were. 

     

    They didn’t start off their walk with the intent of following Kikyo and Diego. At least, if it had been their intent, they wouldn’t admit it. That would have been kind of creepy, and they only went for the good kind of creepy. Darkened forests, abandoned houses, and ancient fairy rings surrounded by mists, not stalking. So, it wasn’t that they were following them, they were merely staying in the area and watching out for any signs of the strange wolf-scented shifter from the day before. At times Diego and Kikyo weren’t even in sight, hidden behind the horizon or a stand of trees while Tenebris examined the ground for bloodstones, but Diego’s booming voice made it easy to find them again. Besides, it wasn’t like they were hiding; Diego and Kikyo had almost certainly seen them, and they hadn’t told Tenebris to go away. 


  9. image.png.8c961a72121d1ad09c96da1fff1930c5.png

    Aleiss

    Pride Camp

     

    Aleiss rolled over, stretching out to her full length in her sleep. As she did so her center of gravity shifted to be too close to the edge of the bed and she slowly slid closer to the edge. With a thump she fell onto the hard wooden floor below. 

     

    Disgruntled, she curled in on herself as if she could ignore that she was awake now. Alas, her efforts were for not, and after a few minutes she was forced to accept that consciousness had found her. Life was hard. Like the floor she was laying on. Why was she still on the floor. 

     

    The floor hurt, so she’d have to get up. After she did that, she’d have to explore the room she was in, since it clearly wasn’t one she’d been in before. That made sense, since she’d been told that she was being moved, which was probably good! The scientists never told her anything, so maybe the fellow shifters would tell her more. 

     

    She’d gotten off topic. Get up, explore the room, which would probably lead to having to catalogue items or something. It was a hazy area of her plan, since she didn’t know what was in the room yet, and the whole plan rested on that. It was frustratingly circular.

     

    After that she’d have to leave - but she was too hot for that. Shift, then leave? But she was hot now, so maybe it would be better to shift before dealing with the floor problem at all, but that would leave her uncomfortable while shifting…

     

    Ughhhhh. Mornings. Why couldn’t she have just slept until someone came to bother her?

     

    Eventually she did get around to pushing herself off of the floor and looking around the small room she’d been left in overnight. There wasn't actually much to look at, and even less was available to look at because she couldn’t open the drawers without hands. She hadn’t thought things through enough, but at that point she was ready to just leave anyway. 

     

    Right, the heat. She’d almost managed to forget the stifling weight of her coat or the dry thirst prickling the back of her throat. She wanted to blame her absentmindedness on the drugs they had injected her with (frustratingly, the scientists had refused to tell her what they were dosing her with, which she was sure was illegal on multiple levels), but it wasn’t a particularly bad morning for her. Things just be like that sometimes. 

     

    She managed to shift while thinking about how much she wanted to know what drugs they’d used on her, both from a stance of wanting to know about side effects and from simple curiosity. Forcing a shift was pretty cool - there was all sorts of different hormones and proteins that had to be activated. Really, it would have been polite to tell her how it worked while they were testing it on her. 

     

    She pushed open the door, noting how unpleasantly squeaky the hinges were. They had to be oiled, except she wasn’t entirely sure what kind of oil one was supposed to use on door hinges. Would cooking oil go rancid?


    She missed Google so much. 

     

    The camp was quiet as she padded around it, examining every nook and cranny she could find and running her fingers across every surface she could reach. The workmanship wasn’t perfect in a lot of places, but it was pretty good for being set up in the middle of nowhere. What kinds of tools did they have access to? Could they build more? 
     


  10. Jowan 

    f4r0Deq.gif

    Allies: Duke, Raine, Natsuki, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight, Antoni, Sorey and co.
    Location: Gateway 

     

    He didn’t consider himself “freakishly strong”, what with his magic being so weak, but it was easy to believe in himself when Duke had such conviction. He couldn’t stop himself from grinning along with him, despite the dangers outlined in the information packet. 

     

    For a moment, Duke looked completely serious. Jowan looked at him, anticipation building until Duke spoke. “If you're worried about the height, just look at them from a distance. They'll look small then!"

     

    Jowan couldn’t keep a laugh from escaping. Only Duke could think of something so simple and ridiculous. And yet, the idea wasn’t completely without merit. Jowan couldn’t tell if it was intentional or not. “From the sounds of it they don’t use ranged weapons,” he said, trying to stifle his laugh and speak with mock seriousness. “So looking at them from a distance would be the best plan.” 

     

    At Duke’s request for more information he flipped through the pages rapidly, scanning for any other mention of the world ‘Terris’. Whomever the Terris were, either Raine didn’t think them important enough to include or their section was too small to find at the speed Jowan skimmed through. He flipped back to the beginning of the stack for another skim through, but before he could get more than a few pages in Kelsier approached them. 

     

    He froze and, embarrassingly, shrunk back so that Duke’s body was partially between him and Kelsier. His gaze flickered up to Kelsier, catching sight of a grin on the man’s face, then went back down to the papers he was holding, as if Kelsier would just go away if Jowan was reading. 

     

    "Jowan, was it?" Kelsier said. "I'd like to apologize for pulling on your emotions without warning. If we are to work together, we'll need trust between us, yes?"

     

    Jowan bit his lip, unsure of how to respond. He wasn’t used to people apologizing to him (discounting Neria, for she was always the exception). He supposed he should accept Kelsier’s apology; after all, he’d overreacted, hadn’t he? Kelsier certainly seemed to think so, if his cavalier tone was anything to go by - not that Kelsier’s opinion on the matter was important. He’d been hurt, but it had been one act, and he couldn’t just throw away allies. Not when the mission meant so much to Duke. “I suppose so,” he said, still looking through the papers. He didn’t think trust was really achievable, now, but it’d be hypocritical to not try. 

     

    Kelsier seemed to know something about the Terris, and Jowan was struck with the desire to just ask him about it. The information might not even be in the stack of papers, but he felt that it was important. Didn’t he say that he was going to try to trust Kelsier? “Who are the Terris?” he asked before he could talk himself out of it. He’d have rather just found the information himself and been the one to tell Duke about it, to hear his curiosity and desire to learn more. He almost resents Kelsier for butting in and ruining that. At least Duke’s closeness is a comfort. 
     


  11. Jowan 

    f4r0Deq.gif

    Allies: Duke, Raine, Natsuki, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight, Antoni, Sorey and co.
    Location: Gateway 

     

    “Thank you,” he said in reply to Giorno before quickly looking away again. The man looks… not upset, exactly, but not happy either, and Jowan wasn’t sure whether he’d done anything wrong or not. Better to just avoid opening his mouth and ruining things with someone that was going to be fighting with him. 

     

    Jowan’s heart swelled at Duke’s words, and a small smile crept  its way onto his face. Truly, Duke wanted to hear him continue to read? That pleased Jowan more than it had any right to. “Let’s see…” he said, flipping through the pages. What would Duke be most interested in? For Jowan it was mostly the magic system (of which there were a few pages of information on), but he didn’t think that would be Duke’s favorite part. It was too detailed and focused on the specifics of which metals could be burned to do what. City layout was a no as well. Absently, he leaned closer to Duke. Hm, since Duke was so interested in taking down the Lord Ruler, something about him would probably be best. He skimmed through, trying to find something that wasn’t overly filled with strange words about the magic of Scadriel. “Rashek - that’s the name of the Lord Ruler - was part of a growing number of young Terris - that must be some kind of ethnic group? It doesn’t say - who had more violent attitudes than was seen as typical of their people. They believed that their Feruchemy should have been put to greater use than it was as a tool for simple labour.” 

     

    He flipped over to another page, trying to keep the “interesting bits” like Duke had suggested. “The koloss are a bestial race of creatures on Scadrial, created by the Lord Ruler through the use of Hemalurgy. During the time of the Lord Ruler, koloss serve as a powerful, fiercely loyal army to him, thanks in no small part to the fact that they can be controlled through the use of Allomancy by any powerful Mistborn or group of brass and/or zinc mistings. Oh, those sound nasty, it says they can grow up to twelve feet tall. I hope we won’t have to fight any. ” As soon as he said it he winced. Why would he say that? Now they definitely would, just because the universe hated him. 
     


  12. Sounds good, I'm ready for a timeskip as well! I don't think Tenebris would mention the wolves, though? They only know that Deric exists, after all. They could theoretically mention that there's one running around, but I don't think they will. Right now they're pretty on edge and don't think that anyone wants to hear them talk at all. It could happen if something prompted them, though!


  13. Zagreus

    Allies: Caspian

    Status: Uninjured

    Weapon: Stygius, Blade of the Underworld

    Location: Sector 1

     

    Zagreus chuckled, quiet, hoping to calm the nervous man - Caspian. It's not a name that he's ever heard before, but that's hardly surprising. He'd talked to and overheard hundreds of shades, but they didn't always offer up their names and were only a small segment of the thousands that crossed through his father's realm. "It's fine," he said.

     

    There are multiple strange, blobby creatures around, moving with cheerful hops. Unlike almost everything Zagreus had encountered, they didn't seem hostile. They seemed almost friendly, one rubbing against Caspian. Zagreus had no idea what that meant, but Caspian didn't seem disturbed by it. Curious. He took a moment to card his fingers through the grass, reveling in its lushness before standing as well.

     

    "So it seems," he said. Was it rude to land in the blobby things' nest? He didn't want to be a poor guest, after all. "Hello, little… guy?" he said, not entirely sure how to address the blob. He doubted it could understand him anyway, but that had never stopped him before. It made a soft sound at Cas' refusal to accept the rubbing and hopped over to Zagreus instead and started rubbing against his leg. "Er…"

     

    He reached down and started scratching behind its ears, lighter than how he'd pet Cerberus. The blob was pretty cute. It started growling softly and Zagreus jerked his hand away, worried that he'd bothered it, but this only caused it to whine and stare up at him with sad eyes. 

     

    The growling was happy…? 

     

    He reached down and started petting the slime again, and it resumed its contented growls. How strange and delightful.

     

    Abruptly he realized that he'd been ignoring Caspian and he looked up at him, not ceasing petting the growling creature. "Terribly sorry, sir. Please accept this gift," he said, digging into his pockets to find a bottle of shining gold ambrosia and holding it out to Caspian. He gave ambrosia to everyone new he met; seeing someone's face light up at the gift was far better than eating it himself ever was. "And I'm sorry if this is a strange thing to ask, but do you happen to know where we are?" Not the Underworld, certainly, but apart from that he had no idea. His relatives had never mentioned anything like the blobs (admittedly most of them were rather one-track).

     

    to all the thieves

     


  14. Zagreus

    Allies: Caspian

    Status: Uninjured

    Weapon: Stygius, Blade of the Underworld

    Location: Sector 1

     

    Panting with exertion, Zagreus dashed to the side to avoid a thrust of the bident, bright blue waves splashing away from where he landed. After a brief pause to reorient he charged in, swinging Stygius in wide slashes. With each swing the power of Zeus burst forth, bright arcs of lightning striking his target.

     

    "Your cannot control your brutish strength," Hades growled as Zagreus dashed away with another splash. Hades let his bident spin around him in the air, preparing for another attack.

     

    "Not interested in the commentary, Father," Zagreus retorted, trying to reach the shelter of a large rock. He's a bit too late, and a red-green laser leaves a deep burn on his arm. 

     

    Ugh, this was bad. His father was approaching death, but that hardly mattered when he doubted he'd be able to survive another hit himself.

     

    Well, the only way forward was to attack. 

     

    As soon as the lasers cleared he charged, throwing out the golden disk of Athena's cast to deflect Hades' own cast as he did so. Maybe he could- 

     

    Too late, he saw his father preparing to spin his bident. Eyes wide, Zagreus tried to dash out of range, but he wasn't fast enough to escape the tip of the bident cutting through his midsection. "No, wait--!"

     

    Once again, and almost certainly not for the last time, he finds himself falling, falling, through thick blood. He automatically climbed up and out, shaking the blood from his hair, but from the moment his head rose from the blood he could tell something was wrong. No. something was right

     

    He blinked open his eyes, then involuntarily screwed them back shut, blinded by the light. He could feel a breeze on his skin, and the air smelled fresh and floral. It was nothing like the dank, coppery smell of the House. Against the will of his body he forced his eyes back open, desperate to see. 

     

    The land was similar to Elysium, filled with strange ruins and bright vegetation, but it was infinitely better. The air was alive, moving around him and cooling his skin, and he could see the sky. The sky, free from clouds! He laughed, releasing some of the sheer joy he felt. He was out. 

     

    How, he had no idea. Some machination of Chaos? It didn't fit, when Chaos had always offered clear trades. Did it even matter? 

     

    Distracted by how bright and blue and clear the sky was, he didn't notice another man stumbling into him. He fell to the ground with an oof, flat on his back. The man that had landed on him didn't seem hostile- if anything, he seemed just as confused as Zagreus was. "Erm, hi," he said, making no move to try to get up. The other man was so light and looked almost delicate, with a fine, elegant bone structure, large blue eyes, and carefully braided pink hair. "Nice to meet you. I'm Zagreus."

     

    good riddance


  15. Clockblocker

    Allies: Kuu, Rufus, Utakata, Temeraire, Illidan, Lara, etc.

    Location:  Mauna Kea Beach - Food Table -> Fighty Spot

     

    Dennis let out a sigh of relief. As absurd as Rufus’ sudden transformation to a polite human (or demonic, whatever) being was, it was convenient for his purposes. Those purposes, of course, being keeping a fight from breaking out and getting them in a position to help the multiverse. He didn’t trust XDREs in the least, but it was their best bet. He could work with shady organizations if he had to; he’d had practice. Working alone would never be enough to make enough of a difference. 

     

    He occupied himself with trying to scrape away more of the not-acidic slime from his face and hair. Ugh, his hair had to be a weird plastered mess now. It couldn’t be moved by anything but his own body, so if he touched it it would stay that way until he could find a mirror and fix it. At least the slime couldn’t penetrate too far into it. 

     

    He was interrupted from his thoughts by the sound of distant thunder. Reflexively, he looked up and saw the sky darkening from the direction of the sound. 

     

    Kuu. 

     

    “Come on,” he said, taking hold of Rufus’ arm. “Kuu’s probably trying to kill some fish.” Despite his casual words he was worried, so he ran towards the source of the thunder, letting go of Rufus to pull on his mask as he did so. He wasn’t the only one; the cat-eared girl that had dumped ink on Rufus and a giant Case-53 looking man had also started heading towards the foliage. Slime Jerk sent a stream of bubbles towards the sound, and Clockblocker took note to avoid them. 

     

    Kuu was fighting something that certainly wasn’t a fish. He’d tagged a far faster before, but the not-fish was still quick enough that he wasn’t sure that he could get close enough to touch it without getting shredded by the claws it was armed with in the process. Of course, that would still be a win, but he’d rather avoid injury if possible. More importantly, the not-fish had sent a dark ball of energy towards Kuu. There was nothing he could do about that; he’d have to trust Kuu to take care of himself. 
     


  16. Jowan 

    f4r0Deq.gif

    Allies: Duke, Raine, Natsuki, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight, Antoni, Sorey and co.
    Location: Gateway 

     

    "I... don't think I understand the problem here," Jowan said, furrowing his brows. "What's wrong with there being four of us? I mean, maybe it would help if there were more, but- Duke no." 

     

    By the time the words left his mouth Duke had already plucked the papers from his grasp. He doesn't resist, instead loosening his grip on the papers too prevent them from being ripped. He didn't doubt that Duke would rip a few to steal them from him. Jowan stares at Duke, a pleading look on his face, but Duke's too busy squinting at the page to notice. A hopeful flare of excitement swelled in his chest when Duke actually showed interest in a specific word, but it fizzled out and died like a quenched flame when he realized that Duke wasn't even showing him the word. He vainly tried to lean around to see what Duke was pointing at, a faint blush dusting his cheeks at the proximity of their faces. 

     

    It hurt a little when declared the papers to be boring, like Duke was calling him boring by extension. He didn't find the papers boring -- they were very interesting, in fact -- so didn't that say bad things about his tastes? It wouldn't be surprising if Jowan was a boring person -- it wasn't like he had much experience in the world or what people that hadn't been locked in a tower for most of their lives found interesting. He wanted to spend time with Duke and teach him how to read, but maybe Duke would tire of him eventually and move on to the next person. 

     

    Still. They'd talked a little, and they'd agreed to try, right? Jowan wasn't one for avoiding things just because they were bad ideas. He could try and believe Duke when he said that he, for whatever reason, enjoyed spending time with him. 

     

    Moving quickly before Duke could start shuffling the papers again (or, Maker forbid, drop them), Jowan grabbed the stack and held on so that both of them were holding one side of it. He stepped around so that he was beside Duke and could finally see the word Duke was pointing at. Duke's fingertip partially obscured it, as if he had more or less randomly stuck his finger out at the page, so Jowan nudged his hand out of the way. "Empire," he said before Duke could get distracted again. "The Lord Ruler is the supreme leader of the Final Empire. He reigns from, uh," Jowan paused, unfamiliar with the next two words. "-Kredeek Shaw, his fortress in Luthadel." The paragraph continues with information about the geography of Luthadel and important landmarks, which Jowan doubted Duke would find interesting.   

     

    damn it, Duke

     

    Natsuki

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    Allies: Duke, Raine, Jowan, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight, Antoni, Sorey and co.
    Location: Gateway 

     

    Natsuki closed their eyes for a moment. Having Duke and Mista in one location was like having to watch over two children. As much as they respected Giorno and trusted Mista's skill in combat, his... eccentricities were an obstacle. As ridiculous as his refusal to associate with the number four was, it was still something they had to consider. They couldn't understand why he couldn't just get over it, but it wasn't their place to say that. It was best thought of as an allergy: an overreaction to normal stimulus, but something that had to be worked around regardless. 

     

    Even so, they wouldn't have bothered rearranging the agents on the mission for Mista's issues alone. He seemed determined to find fours in everything, and would probably find some trait or another that four of them shared. Mista's problems and Duke being Duke, however, was enough for them to decide that something should change. Giorno alone wouldn't be able to take care of Duke, especially if Duke insisted on running off alone. "Perhaps I could accompany you," they said, glancing over at Raine. They felt an urge to request that she come as well, especially since she would be far more helpful against allomancers, but they couldn't speak for her. "I know it's not in the plans, but I'm not particularly needed here at the moment, and it seems as though some members didn't disclose all relevant information prior to now," they said, looking at Duke enough to make it clear whom they were talking about. 

     

    damn it, Duke


  17. Jowan 

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    Allies: Duke, Raine, Natsuki, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight
    Location: Gateway 

     

    A small noise of horror escaped Jowan's throat when Duke roughly shuffled the stack of papers Raine had handed him. Why, he wanted to ask, but at this point he knew that Duke usually just did things without thinking. It was frustrating, especially for someone that knew how much harm rashness could cause. He could see Duke walking up to a metaphorical cliff one day and stepping off the edge because he didn't think that the ground could harm him. 

     

    It was also so captivating. Despite Duke's flaws, he was so eager in everything he did, so ardent in his desire to help people. His mistakes would be different from Jowan's. 

     

    Duke being a wonderful person didn't stop Jowan from leaving his pose against the rock and carefully snatching the papers from Duke's hands before he could drop them into the dirt, of course. He couldn't just allow the beautiful stack of information to be manhandled by someone that clearly didn't understand its worth (in fairness, not being able to read yet would make that difficult for Duke). He fussed over the stack, sorting the pages back into their proper order and smoothing out creases. His eyes flashed over the pages as he went, picking out headings and fragments of sentences. 

     

    Ah. He'd known that Duke hadn't had his sword, but he hadn't known that he couldn't use his barriers. They were all going to die, then. He hadn't expected Duke's metaphorical cliff to come up so soon.

     

    Jowan was distracted enough by the papers in front of him and the revelation of their impending doom that he nearly missed Guido's words. Four? He looked up and saw that Guido was pointing to Kelsier, not him (he refused to look far enough to really look at Kelsier). "There's five of us. I'm going too," he said, but even as he did so he felt doubt welling up. He was still going, right? Nothing had changed, they hadn't realized that they were better off without him?


  18. Jowan 

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    Allies: Duke, Raine, Natsuki, Giorno, Mista, Kelsier, Ray, Twilight
    Location: Gateway 

     

    Jowan leaned against a rock at the Gateway, one foot up against the stone, fidgeting with a decorative strip of white cloth on his shirt. Well, not his shirt. His old robes had been completely unsalvageable and had been burned, so he’d been stuck wearing Duke’s clothes. He didn’t really mind that. Duke’s clothes were bizarre, but it wasn’t like Jowan knew anything about fashion. He’d worn enough robes, in any case. 

     

    The past few days had moved too quickly and too slowly all at once. There’d been people to meet, new things that had had to be explained to him (the shower wasn’t the only strange thing in the castle), and research to do. It’d all been exhausting, but he wasn’t as nervous in the castle as he had been when he’d first arrived. All things considered, life had been relatively calm. Apparently the number of people that had arrived when he did wasn’t an everyday thing, nor was someone getting stabbed in the arm. He was more prepared for a fight, as well - a dagger sat heavy at his side, tucked under his clothes, and a plain wooden staff was at his back. Duke had presented it to him a day after Jowan had mentioned not having one, and he had no idea where he'd found it. 

     

    He’d avoided Kelsier, of course, leaving the room whenever he showed up. He was paying for his avoidance now, he supposed. He wasn’t going to refuse to help an entire world just because he had a grudge against one man, but that meant that he hadn’t interacted with Kelsier in days and now had to work with him. Jowan pointedly avoided looking in his direction, and instead stared at the stack of papers in Raine’s hands and tried to see if he could make out the words on the top page. 

     

    Two more men arrived and the golden-haired one (how did he get his hair like that?) introduced them. His words were serious, and Jowan felt overwhelmed by the aura of complete control that Giorno radiated. Giorno reminded him of Kelsier and Duke, in that sense. A person with the charisma to lead armies solely with the strength of his conviction. “I’m Jowan,” he said, then glanced down, unable to meet Giorno’s eyes. Should he have said more? Maker, he probably should have, or perhaps he shouldn’t have said anything at all. Now it was too late, and he couldn’t add anything without it being weird. 

     


     


  19. “I am here,” Tenebris said, melting out of the shadows with perfect (if you asked them) dramatic timing. They lifted their head to squint at Deric’s retreating form for a moment, taking note of the direction he was going. “I crossed paths with Kikyo nearby, and did not wish to see harm come to her.” 

     

    They’re not sure about Kikyo’s insistence that Deric was ‘nice’, when all Tenebris had seen from him was instability. Perhaps the problem was with Tenebris, and before they’d shown up and after they’d stayed behind Deric and Kikyo had been interacting amicably. Maybe Deric just hated them, for one reason or another. He wouldn’t be the first person. Tenebris was gangly, unnatural, all sharp edges and bone. They didn’t like people, so wasn’t it entirely fair that people didn’t like them? 

     

    That wasn’t a productive line of thinking, but it wasn’t one that was easy to pull away from. All they could do was attempt to rebuild their walls of self-righteousness and arrogance, but cracks remained in the mortar. Little fractures that let doubt seep in, weaknesses. 

     

    Diego had mentioned going back for food, and Tenebris was hungry, but they doubted anyone would want them back. That had been made clear, yet, they didn’t have anywhere else to go. They didn’t know how to survive on their own, and they weren’t keen on dying out on their own. That, and why should they care if people hated them? It was fine. It didn’t bother them. 

     

    So, strutting back into camp and acting like nothing had happened was the plan. “Let us return with haste, then.” 
     


  20. Tenebris snarled back in surprise, fur fluffing fluffing out in reaction to Deric’s sudden aggression. He was taller than they’d expected, something that they didn’t appreciate. They had merely asked a question, and could see no reason for such a reaction to be justified. A sore point or not, it was clear that the man was volatile. 

     

    They’d made their own mistakes, let emotions control themself in a similar way. It wasn’t that they didn’t understand, for they’d been there. If anything recognizing that feeling of having one’s body gripped in the talons of emotion, uncontrollable, led them to be more wary of Deric. They didn’t think that anyone should trust them, either. Why would they? Tenebris gotten into fights before and had the scars to prove it. They knew they were a bad person. Every step forward was matched by a step back. 

     

    Everyone was some level of bad person, they figured. That was why they couldn’t trust anyone and no one could trust them. The world was cold and lonely. 

     

    They clicked their teeth and flicked their tail nervously at Kikyo’s words. They certainly didn’t think that approaching the man, who had displayed aggression so suddenly, was a good idea, but Kikyo had her own ideas. She sounded so certain, and Tenebris knew that they couldn’t stop her. She was an adult, and her choices were her own. They couldn’t assume that they were right in this situation. “Be careful. I will remain close enough to assist you, should you call for my aid.” 

     

    They didn’t think that they would be able to win, should there be a fight. There was a heavy scent in the air, similar to a dog’s. Wolf, potentially. Winning wasn’t what was important, however. What was important was ensuring that Kikyo could escape, and they believed themself capable of at least that. 

     

    They trailed a distance behind Kikyo, close enough to remain in earshot while far enough to not seem like they were trying to approach as well.