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The Riptide Catastrophe [Closed]

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Note: This RP is Closed. Only if you are in the whitelist may you post. If you're not in the whitelist, feel free to PM me and we'll discuss things! I simply added the people who expressed interest in the roleplay prior.

Whitelist: skwerl56767, Geometry Dash YouNoob (Floof), TehUltimateMage, beiningtian (Pyro), Esko_the_Wolf, MyaMouse, Mikasa187




The citizens in the plaza looked up at the building with keen eyes, watching the pulsing device on top of it, sprawled along the roof like a spider. Circling the device were several catwalks, and barely seen at this distance were the scientists running around, checking for stability thrice at each control panel. The device powering up escalated the excitement in the crowd. Whispers of anticipation flicked from ear to ear. Humans and their companions alike pressed ever closer to the town hall, its doors and windows barricaded to hide whatever prior experimentation happened inside.

“ This is it, folks!” A loudspeaker on the front of the hall announced. “ The Riptide is ready!”

There were a couple of whoops, but people were hushed as though the thrumming of the machine was too sacred to drown out. A blue light formed on the pinnacle of the machine, pointed straight up into the sky.

“ Get ready to say hello to our inter-dimensional friends!” The loudspeaker said. He began to count down, the crowd enthusiastically joining him:

“ 10!

" 9!

" 8!

" 7!

" 6!

" 5!

" 4!

" 3!

" 2!

" 1!"

The speaker suddenly cut out into static, as the machine’s thrum grew into a deafening whir, eating up the power of the city. The cheers of the crowd was drowned out by the immense noise. Pebbles, doors, and windows all rattled from the intense energy. The light on the device grew into a bright star…

The whirs transcended into a constant tseeeeeer!, and the light jumped upward into a bright beam. It struck the stratosphere, and quickly began to disperse.

“ Launching stabilization pods!” The loudspeaker returned as power to the city was restored from the machine’s power-up. The people kept cheering; mighty clunks sounded from around the plaza as hefty, stationary launchers propelled elliptical objects into the sky. Eight of them were launched, all stabilizing into a hover, and quickly formed a circle around the expanding pool of light. With loud booms that resounded through the air, they formed a light barrier, and the pool stopped at its edges. The crowd was ecstatic.

“ It’s working! It’s working! The portal is opening!”

Eager eyes watched the massive portal, as the white light dimmed and formed a black, endless tunnel into space, its form unseen from the outside. The cheers stopped, as the people studied the fruits of their endeavors… where were their allies? Those voices that helped them through their own chaos and wars? Shouldn’t some kind of craft or creature - ?

There was an earth-shattering boom; literally, as it cracked the plaza streets! Everyone jumped, staring at the portal.

“ Something’s wrong! The portal is destabilizing! We may have missed-” The speaker cut out, as something huge fell out of the portal.

A very large, very angry beast. A mess of limbs and viscera, it crashed into the buildings beside the plaza, moaning. Everyone screamed.

That was not the friendly image that had been helping them all along.

The beast rolled over and turned its eyes to the people, opening its ugly maw and screaming. Several smaller beasts fell onto the roof of the town hall, hissing and writhing, scattering the scientists. The people fled. Scientists panicked and flung themselves into the safety of the town hall, leaving the device running. More and more bizarre, eldritch monstrosities tumbled out of the portal, none of them matching any universe in particular, all of them crashing into the city, thrashing and destroying the unknown buildings they were faced with.

The portal had failed… and it was still open. And these things were not friendly.


user posted image


-The Riptide Catastrophe-

All because we wanted to hug inter-dimensional aliens.




Year is 3151. The Riptide Catastrophe took place 5 years ago. It is the anniversary of the Riptide device, the construct the humans used to open the inter-dimensional portal. These humans are not unlike the ones on Earth, although they are a bit more advanced, with a mixture of both recognized and sci-fi-material technology; the biggest thanks to their advancement goes to an inter-dimensional race they discovered almost a thousand years prior, known simply as the Taos. At first communication was done only through sound, then video, then live streaming; the Taos were friendly beings, eager to learn and create as much as the humans did. They shared technology and knowledge, and collaborated over the inter-dimensional seas with human scientists to devise a portal in which the two races could finally meet in person. Despite both side’s efforts to create such a device, however, something failed on the humans’ end, causing the portal to rip its way into many other universes, most of them arbitrary. The result was disastrous; many dimensions hostile by their nature alone poured out into the city, tearing it apart and devastating its pride and glory. The portal failure wasn’t without its advantages though; some other beings also fell into the mix, and these people wanted to revert the Riptide Catastrophe and go home just as much as the humans did.

The problems? The city had been quarantined into a citadel, isolating the chaos from the flourishing, outside world, but trapping the people in the process. The Riptide device is still active, letting all sorts of things come through. Flustered beings from other dimensions had also come through, intent on going home but unable to travel back through the portal in the sky, not with the no-man’s-land surrounding the town hall. Finally, in an effort to protect against themselves, the citadel was seized and quarantined by officials higher than the mayor, which meant that citizens were kept away from any place deemed dangerous; the military had permission to open fire on anyone resisting the orders, forcing the common people to simply watch and wait while their homes were destroyed.

The solution to all of this? Well… that might lie in the problem.



Factions: Just to give you guys a basic idea of what’s going on. Feel free to run away with it!

  • The Hostilities/Hostiles are the inter-dimensional things that aren’t friendly. The different universes will clash with each other, but they all seem to have a common goal of securing the area around the Riptide device for themselves; less intelligent Hostilities are simply rampaging around the city, trying to find a way out despite the Guardians’ best efforts to contain them.

  • The Foreigners are the inter-dimensional things that are either neutral or friendly. Foreigners can change to Hostilities on a whim. Some Foreigners are trying to escape the citadel just the same, though need to go into hiding when approaching the city’s perimeter.

  • The Citadel Guardians refer to any soldier or thing that is stationed to protect the Citizens and the city. They have orders to eliminate any Hostilities or Foreigners, and if a Citizen starts acting suspicious (like forming an alliance with a Foreigner) or against the Guardians, they have permission to eliminate the potential threat (basically kill you).

  • The Citizens are the natives of the Riptide universe that witnessed the catastrophe and are now currently sandwiched between Guardians and Hostilities. They see potential in the Foreigners though…
Rules: I’ll keep this simple for you guys.
  • The forum rules apply.

  • No godmodding.

  • Powerplaying (OPness) is determined by the balance of power between each character, so be cautious.

  • Both canon and non-canon things can be used! Most of this will be original, however.

  • No one-liners; post size is otherwise irrelevant.

  • Only basic sheets are required; everything else can be improvised! (Sheets are needed for both canon and original characters.)

  • There will be an “us” group and an “other” group. “Other” is just unsorted characters. “Us” will be self-inserts from this Earth or any alternative Earth, include the Riptide universe. You don’t have to make a self-insert, but I figured I would establish the terminology. tongue.gif

  • In terms of activity, if you have no inspiration for a post, but everything slows down like people are waiting on you, feel free to say you want to be skipped! I don't want this to be super fast-paced, but I don't want it held up indefinitely either.

  [b]Canon:[/b] (Put “Original” if non-canon and “Riptide” for characters from the main planet)

Nothing else is required! Yay for improvising!

Edited by skwerl56767

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   Name: Tessa Staron

   Canon: Original

   Species: Human

   Age: 17

   Gender: Female

   Appearance: Link because huge.



Name: Kyle Ossler

   Canon: Original

   Species: Human

   Age: 17

   Gender: Male

   Appearance: Kyle stands at about 5'7", with an olive skin tone and nearly black hair that reaches just past the top of his ear. His bangs are swept to the side. He has a narrow face and a soft jawline. His eyes are so dark they're almost black, and his eyebrows are of an average thickness. His arms are slightly toned due to three years in marching band, playing with a heavy baritone.




Name: Heather "Blade" Larkracios

  Canon: Riptide Universe

  Species: Human

  Age: 19

  Gender: Female

  Appearance: Heather is 5'5" with straight, dark brown hair almost reaching her hips; most of the time it is held back in a simple ponytail. Her face is a bit rounded with rounded, friendly eyes that are medium blue in color, trending toward green. She has very plain clothes, with a grey T-shirt and black pants. She has a dark green jacket with both buttons and a zipper; unless it's particularly cold, she tends to wear it over her shoulders with only the top buttons done so it functions like a windbreak cape. The things that most people stare at when seeing Heather are her facial markings and her legs: each cheek has an orange triangle on it, tattooed on when she was young. The thing about her legs is that they are robotic replacements, consisting of white metal with blue and orange accents; it's not immediately apparent until you realize she's standing on her "toes", and the toes are actually stilts, and that her pants only cover her thighs because everything else is metal and digitigrade... Movement is tricky, but the robotics does give her a resilience advantage, able to jump high, land hard, and run on almost anything rather quickly, as long as she always lands on her legs. The biggest disadvantage is that liquid, a good electrical shock, or excessive damage can disable the legs and lame her. Finally, she has a thick metal band around her left wrist, which is colored to match her prosthetics.

  Other: The metal band mentioned above is a type of small computer, not unlike a cellphone. It's meant to mainly be a communication device, but Heather prefers texting to anything and tends to only play the minigames on it when she's bored. She does have previous experience with coding and mechanics before, however, just enough to allow her to hack machines as long as she can transmit enough data to it and it's receptive to it. She has a fascination for machines, especially robotics, and even carries a small puckbot with her, usually idle within her wristband where it can charge.

   The puckbot is a little hovering disc that she made with help from her legal guardian when she was younger, not long after the Riptide Catastrophe, as last-resort defense. The little white bot has a thin groove all along its outer edge, in which it can slide out a spinning blade. It additionally serves as a dim light source, with lights on both sides that glow blue, but turn orange when the blade is out. Other than being dear to Heather and being her personal conversation companion it doesn't serve much else of a purpose.



Name: Michelle Monohan

   Canon: DOHFUOH

   Species: Cypher/Human

   Age:... 21?

   Gender: F

   Appearance: Link

   Other: None.


Name: Selye

   Canon: Original

   Species: Human Mage

   Age: 20

   Gender: F

   Appearance: She has silver hair that's about a foot long which she ties into a thick braid and grey eyes with shades of blue. She's about 5'7", and has tan skin from her love of the outdoors from when she was little.

   Her clothing usually consists of a simple black duster, violet shirt, and a skirt that's about knee-length, along with metal-plated shoes. She also wears a light mail curiass interwoven with blue feathers that was apparently gotten off a "water phoenix", according to the merchant.

   Her weapon of choice is a poleaxe with a sapphire inlaid in it that holds a minor charm that makes it so it would never rust. She hadn't found one that makes it unable to blunt, though.

   Other: She knows a good bit of water magic and has a pet cockatrice.



  Name: Riari Ricardio -- Rika for short

  Canon: Original

  Species: Human

  Age: 32 (appears 19)

  Gender: Female

  Appearance: A young woman standing 5'6 who seems to be all angles and too small for her clothes. Rika's figure is hidden to the knees by a purple cloak with unused openings for sleeves, draped and clasped over her narrow shoulders and bleached grey by time and weather. The cloak has a hood and is slightly longer in the back, ending in a notched swallowtail cut and decorated with white trim and red patterns. Underneath is a loose but breathable white shirt with large buttons and oversized rolled up cuffs. Her dark pants are tucked into her thigh-high travelling boots, but she leaves her shirt untucked. The only jewlery she wears is a pair of bangles on her right wrist.


Her skin is on the pale side of tan, and upon closer inspection bares a few freckles. Her black hair, tinted slightly auburn, is cropped above her shoulders and styled in a wings cut, ends flaring out and away from her face. Her sharp nose and chin give her an intimidating look, as do the reddish eyes behind her silver framed, rectangular glasses. She usually looks like she's cross about something, but that's just how she looks. Stone-faced, she doesn't emote very often.


Her current staff is a thick maple branch, smoothed with use and long enough to use as a walking stick. In the top is clasped a large polished stone to provide weight in her swings. While a focus is not required for her spells, the weapon makes her feel less defenseless. It is carried in a sling on her back when she needs her hands free.


  Other: Rika is a black mage of significant caliber. While it takes her some time to cast spells, meaning she would have to be protected by allies, she is destructive and precise. While she dabbles in all of the natural elements, she specializes in calling fire, lighting, and water.



Name: Stanley W. Gulliver

  Canon: Riptide

  Species: Human (Enhanced)

  Age: 27

  Gender: Male

  Appearance: Even at 5'11, Stan is large and big-boned, with wide shoulders and a thick but fit build. His face still has a little bit of softness to it, like he never outgrew his baby features, and he often wears a hint of a smile as if he constantly finds something incredibly funny. While mostly clean shaven (save for those long patrol periods where stubble begins to grow in), he has a soul patch under his bottom lip and his dust-brown hair is cropped short and spiked forward with gel. When not on duty, he dresses casually with a half-buttoned dress shirt and cargo pants or jeans, the pockets in which he stores all sorts of knick-knacks he collects.


A teal circuit-like tattoo runs from the exterior corner of his left eye and down his cheek and his identification is on the back of his neck. His eyes are uncannily green, with the glowing bright rings around his pupils being the major tip-off that they are cybernetic enhancements. His right hand up to his elbow is also made of  robotic parts, kept in the default chromium color scheme. Some scars around his chest and along the top part of his spine also imply that he has quite a bit of metal inside him. He almost never parts with a pair of old goggles, leather gloves, and a maroon scarf, accessories he claims have been passed down in his family. (Conveniently, these accessories also hide his mechanical parts.)


  Pre-Cyborg Stan.


    Other: Stan's specialty is high DPS -- maximum destruction in the least amount of time. He likes to tinker, but only really when it comes to explosives. Many people who hire him end up using him situationally due to the high collateral damage he tends to cause.

Edited by skwerl56767

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Going to use this reserve to establish canon features as we go along because I'm an insane worldbuilder. tongue.gif



  • The Guardians identify Citizens by scanning little CD-like tattoos on their necks that act like bar codes. These symbols were given to every Citizen since the Catastrophe. Guardians have armored drones that can scan these symbols, and can also set up scanner rooms in order to scan multiple people at once.


  • Most Guardians are unmanned machines, including their armored vehicles, tanks, aircraft, and some soldiers. Living soldiers are clad head to toe in armor, purposefully indistinguishable from their robotic counterparts aside from behavior.


  • There are many alleys and tunnels throughout the citadel, not including those made by Hostiles or Foreigners, complicating the containment situation.


  • The citadel is roughly cut into concentric sections:
    • There's a no-man's-land around the Riptide device; it is populated mostly by Hostiles, but also some Foreigners and Guardians. The city is a mess of inter-dimensional territories and warfare here.

    • There's an inner perimeter around that land; a fortified wall set up by the Guardians. Same amount of each faction, but with more city rubble and less inter-dimensional habitat chaos.

    • There's an evacuation zone up against the perimeter, which is an empty, decrepit part of the city with small groups of each faction.

    • Finally, there's the safe zone on the outer part of the city, where most of the remaining Citizens try to live. Occasionally there's a break of peace with Citizens rioting and trying to take their homes back, or when a Hostile or a Foreigner is spotted running around, but for the most part it's tensely peaceful and carefully watched by the Guardians.

    • The Guardians have additionally set up a huge outer perimeter around the city to contain the Catastrophe, and won't let anything in or out, but while security is tight heavy weaponry is lacking.

  • The city was originally weakly-built, as old-fashioned (technically modern; 1990s - 2010s) materials are cheap and there was little to be afraid of; as such, much of the city is destroyed, though it is slowly more rebuilt when nearing the city limits. In areas with a strong Guardian presence buildings have been fortified with multiple layers of steel.


  • Modern cars as we know them have since been replaced by "hovertrollies", which are hovering transport vehicles similar to city buses (they still can't fly though). Rather small, two-person hovercraft are also known as hovertrollies, and can be linked together to form trains of them (carpooling). There are still some people that use terrestrial cars, however.


  • Riptide's technology is a semi-mixed mishmash of modern technology and evidently-more-alien technology. The more advanced stuff - including many of the Guardians, hovercraft, and advanced medical care - was created with the help of the Taos. Even though the world is entirely technological, magic, spiritual phenomena, and other things from other universes will function normally.


  • There is a very thin veil of magic over the entire Citadel, caused by "atmospheres" of magic leaking out from the portal. The veil grows stronger and stronger the closer one comes to the Riptide device (which explains why the land is warped oddly around it), so creatures dependent on mana usage aren't entirely disabled on the all-tech world. The Guardians do become much more formidable the further one is from the device, however, especially as immense spells are reduced to unimpressive sparks.

All right, final note, this will be both the IC and OOC thread, sheets included; just make sure to designate your OOC so it's obvious.

Edited by skwerl56767

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Can I just say I love that subtitle?


Name: Michelle Monohan


Species: Cypher/Human

Age:... 21?

Gender: F

Appearance: Link



Name: Selye

Canon: Original

Species: Human Mage

Age: 20

Gender: F

Appearance: She has silver hair that's about a foot long which she ties into a thick briad and grey eyes with shades of blue. She's about 5'7, and has tan skin from her love of the outdoors from when she was little.

Her clothing usually consists of a simple black duster, violet shirt, and a skirt that's about knee-length, along with metal-plated shoes. She also wears a light mail curiass interwoven with blue feathers that was apparently gotten off a "water phoenix", according to the merchant.

Her weapon of choice is a poleaxe with a sapphire inlaid in it that holds a minor charm that makes it so it would never rust. She hadn't found one that makes it unable to blunt, though.

Other: She knows a good bit of water magic and has a pet cockatrice.

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((Added! All right, let's start this off...))


I sat, hunched over a small disc. I was in the open part of the shop, which was basically a lean-to people could drive into so their cars could be fixed. The shop had been open for almost a decade, although now I was the only person running it... I shouldn't even be this close to the inner perimeter anymore, but it was hard to leave the place I grew up in.

I soldered the remaining wires into the little disc, before carefully sealing the panel back on. I looked up as a boom sounded in the distance, but saw nothing in the dusty, sunlit streets. The fight must be several blocks away.

" I need to hurry up..." I sighed, picking up the disc and flipping the switch on it. The light on it flickered, hopelessly at first, before letting out a steady stream of blue light.

" Yes! Okay, can you fly? Try flying." I spoke to it as if it understood me, holding it out with my palms flat before dropping it. The white disc sputtered for a moment in midair, before stopping its descent just before it hit the table. I squee'd with childlike excitement. " You're alive!"


Another boom, this time closer. I looked up again into the street, but it was still, the buildings across the street decrepit and empty. My anxiety spiked.

" We gotta go." I said, grabbing the little disc - my puckbot - and sticking it to a port on my wristband. It let out a few defiant whirs at the rough treatment. " I know, but it's not safe here anymore!" I said sharply. I unplugged the soldiering iron and frantically began putting away my materials, tossing a fried resistor in the trash in the process; despite the urgency, I still tried to organize everything, as if I had the time to do it. When I was done I grabbed my jacket and backpack, throwing on the latter and tying the former around my waist with the sleeves. With one last, longing look at the mechanic's shop, I went out into the street and headed south; and just in time too.


Despite the bits of rubble lying on the road - everything from wood slivers, to pebbles, to bullet shells - I ran on, unhindered by them. I had learned to run so I wouldn't trip on anything, but golly it had taken some practice; my face must be good friends with dirt, as often as I used to trip. But running with the new legs had taught me to be like a dutiful driver: never take your eyes off the path. So I didn't look up when a whirring device flew up next to me, keeping pace. It flashed a camera at me.

" Citizen, you are 24 meters from the Perimeter." It warned through its speaker.

" Yeah?" I said bitterly.

" You must be at least 1 kilometer away from the firing zone."

" I know."

" You are too close."

" I know!" I glanced up briefly at the flying camera, just to shoot a glare at it. Instead of continuing to reprimand me though, the camera suddenly flew off over the rightmost buildings; I slowed down to watch it leave.

" Huh, wonder why it didn't use my name for once." I mumbled. " Heather this, Heather that..."

There was another boom; now close enough that I could distinguish it as a tank. The noise was accompanied by a loud moan of some gigantic creature. My eyes widened, and I picked up the pace, trying not to think about what might happen if the battle came to me. " Oh, balls..." I grumbled, as another thought hit me: the best route to the safe zone would be across the canal, but every bridge in a mile radius would be up if there was a fight out here. There had to be a way across... but how?


I slowed to take shelter in an alley, the streets still empty from when everyone with a brain evacuated earlier. I knew I should have listened, but nooo, I had to be all defiant and sit around while a Grade A monster plowed its way toward me! Now I had to think of a way across a muddy, nasty waterway, drained to kill off aquatic Hostiles... or find a place to hide.

" Ugh, I'm such an idiot." I leaned against the alley wall, exasperated. " Now what am I going to do...?"

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The boy was sprawled on his twin-sized bed, dressed down in a tank-top and grey athletic pants, his feet bare and in dire need of a nail clipping. A soft snore emitted from his open mouth, finally free of braces; it was a year and a half after he got them removed, and he was still joyous that they were finally.gone. "Mrrr...dammit, Scott...no, don't touch that. My cookies. Back off." He murmured in his sleep, kicking at the air. "Nooo, those are expensive!...rgh, you buy your own....four f**ing dollars...you're spoiled." A short snore sounded, before it returned to normal. "You have the money....I saw you with Thin....rgh....no-"


A loud honk broke through his dreams, and Kyle sat up with a jolt. Looking out the window, he saw a familiar grey minivan in the parking lot. So she did come. Opening the window with a grunt, he peered through the screen as his friend rolled down the window. "Well well well, Tess! You didn't forget this time~"


"You want me to shove your a** in the back, sir?" She snapped back. "I could always tie you to the roof."


"I'd love that!" He replied with cheerful sarcasm. "Anyways, did your dad allow you to use that old beater?"


"Probably not. But you know I know how to drive."


"Sweet. I'll be down in a min."


"One, two, three..."


"Oh, shut up!" Kyle chuckled, then closed the window. He grabbed his green, zippered EB sweatshirt and slipped it on, not bothering to actually zip it up. He didn't bother with shoes either; Tess would most likely just drive around town for fun, maybe stopping by Starbucks or even making the trip to Colonia Dairy Maid. Whatever it was, it would be a parent-free day with just two teenage friends, probably doing something seriously stupid. Sounded like a great day to him. Walking out the door and closing it behind him, he ran to the car and jumped in the passenger seat.


"Yo b**ch. Your hair's pretty undone. Is Nick in there?" Tess winked at him, and he flicked her cheek. She pretended to be hurt. "Oh, you wound me!"


"Shut up. Nick and I aren't active."




"Hey! Only thing keeping you and Phire from that is the fact that it isn't legal."


"We got an age difference of three years. Jeez. Besides, it will be in April."


Not bothering to argue further, Kyle rolled his eyes and looked out the window as Tess pulled out of the driveway and into the road. As they drove, Kyle felt strangely...happy. "So, how was your first competition as drum major?" He asked as they drove away from the Starbucks drive-thru.


"Damn, my arms were tired. Admittedly, I miss marching. A little bit."


"Killer baritone solo though."


Before Tess could respond, a weird ringing pierced his ear. Kyle flinched. "Did you hear that ringing?" Tess nodded, keeping her eyes on the road. "Damn, is it me, or is it getting brighter-" Suddenly, everything flashed before their eyes. Kyle shielded his eyes while Tess freaked out...




After a loud whirrr, a grey minivan flew out of the portal and sailed through the air. It crashed into the ground, sickening crunches sounding, A tire or two popped. It spun and then rolled a few times, giving its contents a good shake. Thank goodness for seatbelts, or else there would've been a good mash of flesh in there too. Soon it stopped barrel-rolling, luckily stopping upright. The two passengers were gripping the seats even as motion stopped, panting hard and wide-eyed.


"Sh**...Dad's gonna murder me." Tess moaned. Kyle was too shocked to say anything.

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I practically jumped out of my skin when there was a huge crash up the street. Judging by the rolling sound afterward - like the breaking of a boiled egg's shell when rolled, but metallic - it was some sort of vehicle! I backed up further into the alley as the rolling vehicle neared, before a rush of adrenaline compelled me to bolt up a ladder leading to the attic of one of the buildings. The Guardians were not going to catch me out here, in a rolling vehicle or not!

The attic was bare, all wooden boards littered with the remains of vermin. There were a couple of ransacked crates in the corner and missing boards from the roof, creating large holes. Crouched down, I snuck over to the roof's peak to peek out past such a hole.


The vehicle had finally stopped just past the alley I was in earlier. It was an older model; familiar, but I couldn't name the brand. It was also pretty beat up from the barrel-rolling. I stared at it for a moment, confused; some people collected those cars for the sake of enjoyment, but by no means did they go around driving them. They were too big and clunky for these streets; we often used hovertrolleys for the city. So who in the world...? A desperate escape attempt, maybe...? It was certainly no Guardian.

Another boom shook me from my thoughts. The fight was coming closer. I peeked out further, and glimpsed the head of some sort of insectoid wading bird. It looked like it was going away from us, but judging by the crashes and massive dust clouds, it was also mowing down buildings. The bird looked in our direction and shrieked angrily; not at us, just the heckling of the Guardians. Which meant the Guardians were close too. So why in the world was that collector not getting his van out of there?! Did the crash knock him out?


I looked at the vehicle, then at the bird thing as it moved across the block. Bird, vehicle, bird, vehicle... part of me wanted to save the guy in the vehicle, or at least give him a chance if he was stuck inside somehow. At the same time, if either of us were caught by the Guardians we would go into Collections, and good grief do I hate Collections... Then then again, if I left him there I'd be stuck with guilt and wondering if the bird-thing ever ate him...

" What's better? Being poked at by a Collections officer, or dealing with my stupid heart?" I muttered to my puckbot. It, of course, didn't answer. I sighed and frowned at the vehicle. " For pity's sake..."


I cautiously stepped back outside, descending the ladder and observing the minivan. There was a screech up the road, and a quick glance past the building told me that the bird-monster had some little friends: exoskeletal cranes with bug legs and pincers, anyone?

" Ugh, of course." I groaned. " Of course of course of course... Titan monsters never come alone." I rubbed my forehead, thinking, before glancing back out really quick to assess the situation. Two on the roof of one building, and one in the street. The first two were either oblivious or disinterested in the van; the one in the street made a weird gurgle and approached it in a jerky, side-step fashion, clearly interested. The serrated beak on that ugly green thing made me shudder.

" Yeah, okay... decision made." I looked around for a weapon, just in case, but the best thing in the alley was a plastic trash can lid... great.

I grabbed it anyway. This was going to be exciting.

Edited by skwerl56767

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Three days now. Michelle ran a hand through her hair and exhaled. The hardest part was getting used to the "heat".... It was almost depressing how quickly she got used to being hunted again.

But what was more important right now is to find out how she got here and, if she could, make sure everyone else is safe where she came from... And maybe find a friend, or at least a companion to talk to. It didn't feel right to be alone anymore.


Michelle stood up and gathered the few things she found or had into a bundle, wondering if she should get closer to the odd place she felt yesterday. In fact, was there-


Some loud and jarring screeches of metal sounded from out the window of the abandoned room she was in. Michelle jumped and levitated the bedside table, prepared to throw it... At a giant, spinning hunk of metal? Still staying back in the shadows of the room, she watched as it finally rolled to a stop before landing on strange black wheels... And nothing more seemed to happen with it. The table softly landed and Michelle took a few breaths to steady her breathing. At least it wasn't another one of those giant metal golem-esque things that she was chased by earlier, but it didn't guarantee that whatever this thing was, it would be friendly.

And speaking of being friendly, as she finally calmed her heart rate, she can hear the sounds of one of those gruesome monsters coming. Or more, none of them seemed to be alone from what she could tell. The table started floating again and Michelle stepped into the light coming in from outside... Where was... Ah. Some sort of water bird with bug-like parts on it was approaching the metal cart-turtle thing in the street. But was there anyone or anything in it? Or was the thing just curious?

The crashes and dust clouds that were getting closer didn't seem to be a good sign, though. "Carrying" the table and makeshift pack, Michelle carefully made her way out of the place and descended the broken steps of the strange multi-tiered building.

Something stopped her from opening the door to the complex, though. She pressed her ear to the metal to listen...

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I cautiously approached the scene, armed with my trash can lid. The bird beast had gurgled again and was now siding up to the van, before extending its neck to check it on all angles. It was a little reassuring; that meant it was too stupid to tell if there were people inside or not. Least helpfully though, it began pecking the vehicle on the one weak spot.

Bang bang. It hammered on the window. Bang bang bang bang bang! Then it appeared to be confused, pecking the other parts of the van.

In a moment of curiosity, I tried tapping the lid on the corner of the building, to see if the noise grabbed its attention. Indeed, its head shot upright for a moment, tilting in my direction. I took it as a cue that it could hear, but not see very well... this could be used to our advantage.


The bird resumed pecking the van in various areas, including the front tire, which hissed at the blow and made it jump back with a rivaling hiss. If there was any noise inside the van, it must not be able to hear it over its own incessant pecking... stupid creature. I decided that the best tactic would be to direct its attention away from the giant, sparkly metal object, make it interested in something else. But how... another metal object?

I spotted a dumpster peeking out of an alley across the street. if I could throw the trash can lid so it hit that dumpster, it should make a loud enough noise... I was no Frisbee thrower. But we shall see.

I "aimed" the can lid in the way I thought I was supposed to, and threw it.

Here goes nothing!

There it goes!


It fell short by three feet.


Pffff...! I buried my hands in my face in embarrassment. Well, that didn't work. And there goes my one defense.

The exoskeletal bird didn't even look up at the plastic clatter; it wasn't as enamoring as the metal it was trying to poke a hole through. I turned to look in the alley I was in, wondering if I overlooked anything I could use, but for an abandoned alley it was completely empty; not unless I could turn into a gorilla and start throwing dumpsters around...


I glared at that drumming bird for a while. Clearly saving people wasn't my area of expertise; the best think I could think of is giving that bird a swift kick and hoping I could outrun it; a distraction was a distraction, right? Although... now we had a problem. Its two buddies were looking intrigued by the loud noise, and had climbed down - yes, climbed down the face of the building - from the rooftop. Now there were three bug-bird-monsters focused on that van.

" So I kick all three of them..." I muttered hopelessly to my puckbot. I looked up at a roar, but I couldn't see the first, larger bird monster that had come through; the Guardians must be successfully directing it back to the perimeter where it could be taken out by the turrets...

Turrets! If I could find a turret... Oh goll, that was even more hopeless than a trash can lid. Guardians don't just leave functional turrets lying around, they're moving them all the time!

I was growing exasperated. There had to be a way to fix this. There had to be. I wasn't given this opportunity just to stand by and watch!

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"Well, errr..." Kyle awkwardly said after quite a bit of silence. "What do we do now?"

"Well, if you got any suggestions, that'd be greatly appreciated." Tess said through gritted teeth. She scanned the landscape, noting how dismal and apocalyptic it appeared. What's better than being magically transported and wrecking your dad's precious car? Being thrown into an apocalypse! And of course, there had to be a giant a** bird monster on the horizon, not to mention smaller ones surrounding it. One of them began pecking at the car.

Kyle shrieked and cowered, especially at the sounds of gunshots. He had always been a bit of a pacifist and unwilling to take sides or pick fights. Rolling her eyes, Tess slid out of the driver's seat and into the middle row, the pecking noise driving itself into her brain. What could she use as a weapon? She could throw a few Thin Mints at it and try and distract it, she could swing Kyle's baritone case at it -why did he even put it in the car?- or....aha! She forgot about her grandfather using the minivan for hunting while his Jeep was in service. That meant...she dug into the pile of stuff and dragged out two hunting weapons, a rifle and a crossbow. Ammo for the former was in a separate bag; she checked it and found there wasn't much, but hopefully enough to scare Big Bird away, or do serious damage.


With the gun over her arm and the bag of ammo in the other hand, she jumped back into the driver's seat. "What're you doing?!" Kyle squawked, his eyes wide with horror.

"I'll tell you exactly what I'm doing. I'm going to shoot Big Bird and kill it dead." Tess grunted, taking the butt of the rifle and smashing a hole in it. Then she put it over her shoulder and stuck the muzzle out of the fresh hole. "Oi, Sesame Street!" She barked at the creature. She just needed a good shot...

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There was a strange banging sound, first of all, like someone tapping their nail on a window, except much louder. Maybe the bird was doing something? Still, since it was distracted for the moment, Michelle looked around her. A few papers and pens littered the floor, though not enough to provide more than an distraction or annoyance. There was a painting on the wall, but it seemed stuck... And she couldn't see much else of note that she can use. Or, in the case of the tables, get off the floor without too much time and effort.

Side table it is. If nothing else, it would be easier to find something out in the open... Michelle put a hand on the handle, then reconsidered. It wouldn't be good for her to fight without knowing what exactly was happening outside, but the only window didn't look in the direction of the street. She pressed her ear to the door again, and her eyes widened. There were people out there! She couldn't quite make out what they were saying, but with the bug-bird outside, they can't be safe for long; there's no telling if they can defend themselves.

... But could they try to kill her too? Michelle thought for a second, but something told her they probably wouldn't. Stepping back to the last stair in the flight, she turned the doorknob slowly, then threw the door open.


A bang resonated and Michelle could see the bug-bird clearly now--it was focused on something around or inside the hunk of metal (was that where she heard the people talking?), but seemed to have been startled by the door--so she rushed out, table flying in front of her, ready to smash the--something made her spin around and her eyes widened when she saw the four-legged shape falling towards her, the table won't be able to change momentum fast enough-!


It was light for its size, but that wasn't much consolation as she was still knocked to the ground by it landing on her, but it jumped just as soon to avoid the flying table. Michelle jumped to her feet and finally saw the other one coming down the side of the building over there, but the one beside her was more dangerous for the moment.

The table was too heavy for her preference. She couldn't switch directions as quickly as she could with a stool or something lighter, and Behemoth's Stomach this thing was fast!

She'd have to bait it somehow, but was there something around her she can use?



((The issue about futuristic technology would be that you forget to put in simple just-in-case-things like peepholes, I guess.))

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It turned out there were people in the van. I saw a bit of movement past the windows, before the driverside window was smashed and the barrel of something came through; a gun?

Then a female voice came through with a very confusing shout; what the heck was Sesame Street?

The bird beast reared back and hissed, intending to attack, but then it whirled around when there was a bang from the building next to me. I peeked around the corner and saw that its doors had been flung open, a strange woman coming out with a... nightstand in front of her? What the heck? This must be one of those weird Foreigner shenanigans! I mean, she could have been using some kind of magnetic gauntlet, but I didn't see anything strapped to her arm...


The woman seemed to take an offensive stance by somehow throwing the floating nightstand, but the bird beast was pretty nimble, dodging the attack; to my surprise though, the nightstand halted its momentum! That was definitely not the work of a magnetic gauntlet.

There was still a problem though: the woman was knocked down by one of the arriving bird beasts, and even though she recovered she was targeted by both of them; even with a flying table she wouldn't be able to hit them with their agility. The one pecking the car was watching the fight in interest, but wasn't moving. If all three of them switched their priorities to her...

I looked at my puckbot. I really didn't want to have to clean it again; but hey, at least we weren't outnumbered anymore.

I remembered when I was little, before the Riptide was powered on. I used to run races and play agility games with other kids all the time. So surely I could run circles around these things!... As long as they didn't peck me. Golly, that thought... Running in might be enough to distract them though, even if the puckbot could only target one thing at a time.


Yup. Made up my mind. Time to run in like a maniac!

The bird beast closest to the woman was also closest to me, so I bolted out from the alley, yanking the puckbot of its port and tossing it in the air.

" Enemy, 11 o' clock!" I ordered. Its light turned orange and it emitted a threatening whir, flying off toward the bird beast and aiming for its neck. The creature immediately reacted and backed away from the woman, distracted by the bot, snapping at it and trying to avoid its attempts to well... behead it, honestly. That was good enough for me!

I ran off to the opposite alley to retrieve my trash can lid, only to find that this alley was a lot more promising than the one I was in; a metal bucket sat in the corner.

It's so sad that my better option was a bucket. But at least it was metal. So I grabbed it anyway, but didn't run back out into the fight; instead I noticed the bird beast by the car approaching the woman, its priorities changed, so I stopped by the dumpster and began banging the bucket on it, hoping to attract its attention.

" HEY!" I shouted. " Look! It's a loud thing!!"

The bird stopped and whipped around to stare at me, but looked back at the battle, and then back at me, confused as to which was the weaker target. Good! If we could keep them occupied like this, we might actually not die!

Edited by skwerl56767

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"Tess, this seems like a very bad idea." Kyle whimpered, anxiously looking at the rifle. "Maybe picking a fight isn't what we should do. Y'know, with giant bird monsters that have serrated beaks." His dark eyes darted to the bird that was currently watching two of its comrades and...was that a woman? Her hair was awfully bright; that didn't seem smart in this kind of place. Who was she? That probably didn't matter at the moment, but Kyle couldn't help but be curious.

"Well, either we try to blow the brains out of this thing, or we die. And, I swear to God, if that godforsaken creature pecks the car one more time..." Tess growled, peering through the scope and trying to aim at it's head. "Get away from my car, a**hole."


Well, what do you know. The birdthing began to wander towards its bretheren, probably to attack the woman. Suddenly...


A loud voice erupted from somewhere nearby, at a volume that could rival Tess's own bark. Judging by what he-or-she yelled, they were trying to grab the attention of the creatures. Why would you want to do that? Kyle tried to pinpoint the area where the sound came from. Finally, he was pretty sure he saw the source, one of the alleyways. Someone was banging something against something, but he couldn't see any of the somethings. It was working out well, though. The bird seemed to be indecisive, trying to decide whether to attack the woman or whoever was in that alleyway. Tess lowered the gun, watching the scene. An orangey thing also appeared, distracting one of the birdthings by the woman.


"Well sh*t." Tess shrugged, then looked into the scope again.

"Don't tell me you're actually still going to shoot the thing." Kyle groaned. "It's distracted, see? We can make a run for it!"

Tess grunted back. "This old beater's the only cover we got. As soon as we go out there, those things'll be on us. They'll probably rip us to shreds before I could even aim." She adjusted her aim, ready to fire....


The birdthing suddenly jerked its head, as Tess pulled the trigger. The bullet shot out of the muzzle and whizzed through the air...only grazing the birdthing's neck. Tess swore, then reached into the bag for another bullet. "God dammit. I have to miss..." She muttered as she loaded the gun...but by then the bird's attention was on her.


"Oh no..." Kyle squeaked. "Now we're done for..."

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There were too many of them for a heavy table like what she had right now to work with. If she could break the table into pieces, those monsters would be so much easier to actually hit! The bug-bird she was facing jumped away, but she had to keep an eye out for the other ones, especially the one that was focused on her-


"Enemy, 11 o' clock!"


Michelle swore her blood turned cold when she heard that. First the bird creatures, now a person? With the bug-birds she can at least outsmart them, but a person? There was a whirring sound and then an hoarse and angry shriek. Michelle looked back and was surprised to see a little object going for the beast's neck instead of her own. A movement caught her attention momentarily and she spun to see a person running into another alleyway. She almost considered giving chase before remembering that she wanted a distraction for the bug-bird, and the little disk object was doing that perfectly. But what about that bird at the truck?

No, she better deal with this one first. Michelle gestured, and the table slowly swung towards the bug-bird the disk was attacking.


"HEY! Look! It's a loud thing!!" There was a loud shout, then she heard banging from the alleyway the other person ran to. A quick glance around, and Michelle noticed that the bug-bird near the giant metal thing--and the one coming from the roof--was going towards the alley. That person was going to be in trouble! Michelle turned to the bug-bird she was originally facing, which had dodged the table, but it was moving much less steadily now. Apparently avoiding two things at once was too much for it and it suffered a crushed leg. A crushed leg... Michelle took aim and made a quick circling motion with her wrist, and a bolt of green energy shot out at the bug-bird. At the same time, she raised the table that was a little ways behind it and shot the table back towards herself.

A loud BANG went off near the heap of metal. In the blink of an eye, Michelle found herself pressed against the wall of the building she just came out of, and the table she was just using crashed terrifically into the ground. She took a few breaths to calm herself, then looked at the car warily before her eyes widened as she realized there was a person--or two people, rather--in it. No, no time to think about that, she had to focus on the bugbird. She turned to look and faintly smiled, switching her attention to the monster near the hunk of metal. Or not, after her quick glance showed that it was lying on the ground with only the occasional twitch of an unbroken leg, neck presumably slashed by the little disc thing. Which at least wasn't going for her at the moment, thank goodness.


Michelle looked back at the two faces in the metal thing, then at the bugbird heading towards them. The table lifted again, and Michelle ran forward, shouting a sharp "Hey!" at the bugbird. It turned toward her again and was then subsequently blindsided by the half-broken table that rammed into it. The monster crashed forward towards her, landing headfirst and ramming the bottom of its skull and neck on the ground as it fell.

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The distraction was sufficient! With both the woman's telekinetic/magnetic/whatever ability and the little machine, one bird beast was less of a concern; there were still two others though, and the one closest to the car seemed to have made its decision.

" Great." I hissed under my breath, looking around the alley as it headed toward me. Suddenly there was a loud BANG! that erupted from the vehicle, making me wince, but it only seemed to startle everyone around; all three bird beasts were still alive and squirming.

" Great!" I repeatedly angrily, shooting frantic glances at my puckbot. The woman! She was gone! What the...?!

The bird beast focused on me made a gurgling squawk, refocusing my attention; there was an unpleasant sound as the puckbot finished off the first adversary and began returning to me. I judged the nimbleness of the bird beast, trying to find a way to go around it... maybe if I jumped off the dumpster...


Still holding the bucket, I jumped up on top of the dumpster and shot across it. The beast reared, preparing to spear me with its beak. I stuck close to the wall, then made a wild leap back out into the street -

Crash! The beast's beak struck the brick wall with immense force, shattering the face of the stone. Glad I dodged that one!

I landed a little awkwardly and headed out in front of the vehicle, but was distracted when I spotted the woman now standing in front of a decrepit hotel. What the heck was she-?

My puckbot swung itself in front of my face, and I saw the bird beast moving very quickly towards me; too fast! My immediate response was to raise the bucket, and there was an awful screeching sound accompanied by my own yelp as its beak speared the metal like some kind of aluminum kebab. I braced as the bird beast kept pushing dumbly, intent to get me; I tried to keep the creature's efforts at bay, but that beak was slowly inching through my pathetic defense.


" PUCK! I screamed, nearly drowned out by an immense crash nearby and the sound of something landing poorly somewhere behind me. There was a whir, then a splash of black liquid.

" EUGH!" I dropped the bucket in disgust and wiped the thick, nasty stuff off my face, completely lowering my guard; thankfully, the battle was over. Once I felt a little more presentable I assessed the position of each bird beast: on the ground and not moving much! Whew!

I glared at the puckbot. " Remember what I said about clean cuts?" I reprimanded, wiping my hands awkwardly on the bucket still speared by the deceased beast. The bot simply turned blue and sheathed the still-dirty blade, hovering solemnly near my wristband. " Yeah yeah, I know, but you're still..." I faltered, remembering something important... then stood up.

In the vehicle. I was staring at a human face. With a gun. A primitive gun, but that just meant it would blow a bigger hole in me. I smiled weakly, raising my hands up. " H-Hi..."

Edited by skwerl56767

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((Again, I'm waiting for Esko since it's technically his turn, though I can probably find something for Michelle to do?))

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