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X-DREAMERS [mission 02: the otherworldly bazaar]

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[ The sound of chaos... - Marketplace Jail - Illidan ]

 

Illidan didn't have time to explain his Spectral Sight; blind or not, there was still a rescue mission to carry out...

 

Even so, without his Sight, he was essentially just as helpless as the prisoners, and sheathed his Warglaives just before he felt something grab his hand and lead him down the hallways. He could hear the soft buzzing of electricity, but that was really all he could make out in this place before being tugged a little harder. Whoever was guiding him had broken into running and had eventually led them to an unknown room.

 

The feeling of a table underneath his hands was enough to tell Illidan that this wasn't one of the cells.

 

The voice speaking to him... it was Xander's, undoubtedly. And he sounded angry. Very angry. Whether it was purely his anger, or the Fel having amplified it, Illidan couldn't tell. The subject of the guard's death had undoubtedly come up, and how Illidan had all but gone lethal on him, but - still in a panic from the loss of his Spectral Sight - all Illidan could muster up in response to that was, "You don't know that." And even then, the words were shaky, as if Illidan were out of breath.

 

He could hear Xander pacing for a while, but that was his only indicator as to where the king was. Besides Xander's footsteps and the table beneath his own hands, he had no idea what was in the room.

 

He heard Xander speak again, this time apologizing. "...no, don't. Save the apologies. I... My world's authorities tend to use lethal force because most people on Azeroth are dangerous... I was so used to that... I didn't... I didn't think about how things might work in other worlds... Ugh, listen to me ramble. I decided to not think things through, play damn hero, and generally be a dumba** again. If anything, I'm in the wrong this time... At least we're even on me 'kidnapping' you from danger, right...?" That was a poor attempt at lightening the mood, now that he thought about it, but it was all he could muster up amidst his panic and guilt.

 

When he felt Xander's hand brush against his own, Illidan hesitantly took it, being careful not to grip too tightly. The last thing he wanted was to become lost in a jail, and Xander's touch was... comforting, to say the least. His tone softened, the softest it had been since they'd met. "...you're right about the fact that we barely know each other. Maybe it's wrong for me to love someone I've barely met, then..." Illidan shook his head, feeling the heat rush to his face but unsure of whether or not he'd blushed again. "I'm getting off-track. My world uses lethal force 24/7, but for all I know, yours doesn't..."

 

“Please, refrain from taking the lives of any other officer. If not for the sake of the mission, then for my sake.”

 

That didn't help Illidan's blushing. But... who was he to deny a request from the one he had a crush on? "...fine... if that's what you want..."

 

Illidan sighed. "...now to explain why I can't see in here. My Spectral Sight - my vision - relies completely on magic. When I ran in, it just... fizzled out. It normally doesn't just fizzle out, so something must be interfering with it..." He listened as Xander explained the "dragon vein" - likely his terraforming powers, Illidan deduced - and how they weren't working, either. "My best guess is that there's an anti-magic generator somewhere in the building. We take that out, and we - and any other creatures with magic in here - get our powers back."

 

Yet without his Spectral Sight to do so much as see with, and Xander desiring a more cautious approach, they were more or less stuck. It would take a miracle...

 

Loud crashing could be heard, followed by panicked guards.

 

A slight grin managed to come to Illidan's face. "...I don't know what's going on out there - can't bloody see for the life of me - but if my hearing hasn't gone out as well... Perhaps the chaos occurring out there could be used to our advantage..." Indeed, whatever was going on was sure to have disrupted the guards' usual patrol routes. He thought for a moment. "...first and foremost, that anti-magic generator..."

 

~~
[ Gone to hell all over again. - Marketplace Jail - Nora & Carol ]

 

"Carol, what the hell is going on out there?! I hear crashing!"

 

"Um... would you believe me if I said some dragon beast just crashed through the wall of the cell next to us?" It wasn't like Carol to sound panicked, but she had no weapon and no magic, so...

 

But then the words "dragon beast" hit Nora. That beast from earlier! That thing was the reason he was in this mess! He could feel the rage building up in him, but he was powerless, too - couldn't even muster a spark of Fel energy...

 

He hoped Illidan knew what he was doing.

Edited by hikarinomemori

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Anders, Keaton, Ray

Prey is always so easy to find. Darkness fills their Hearts, pressing against the Light, even as the Prey remains unconscious of the battle within them. These hearts are wide open, vulnerable and unprotected. Just like the World. So careless. All the better...

 

This World was ripe with prey, maybe too many. They spread out across the small world, arriving at various locations, some more barren than others. Their travel wasn't perfect, it was hard to track down prey in certain places so more tedious methods were required. Track on foot. Rise to the surface and use their eyes....

 

The Key was here and many already hunted for it. That left the others to be distracted by something else. All sorts of prey were here, clustered in a single location. So many, so wonderful. Darkness and Light mingling together as each force pushed back against the other. 

 

There was a male, sitting on a girl much smaller than he. Something not quite human beside them, two 'somethings'. They were prey nonetheless. 

 

Almost silently, five Dark Corridors pool along the ground, forming a semi-circle behind the vulnerable pair of humans. Dark heads with bright yellow eyes rise from the surfaces, cat-like figures with twitching antennae and bodies taking shape. One immediately flattens itself into the ground, racing towards the pair of 'somethings' as the remaining four lunge into an attack. One strikes at the male's side while the other three leap at the prone girl.

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Pascal -- Wandering the market (VS Heartless) 

 

The young woman grinned in appreciation, satisfied at Sora's herding job. (Or was it a luring job? The shadows were chasing him, not the other way around...) With the enemies in position, she focused on her spell again. It felt like the eleth inside her was going to burst! The magic seemed to rise from the ground but also seep from her skin, surrounding her in a soft blue glow. 

 

"Scorching flames," came her incantation, "find redemption in thine fists! I summon thee, Bloodflamme!"


As soon as she called the spirit's name, fire exploded outwards, searing the gathered Heartless with magical flames. Through the inferno appeared a horned creature nearly twice as tall as Pascal, covered in orange fur with the face of a bull, the arms of a gorilla, and instead of back legs its body trailed into a ghostly tail of a snake. Its massive hands had fingers that ended each in a purple hoof and, using those, it punched into the ground, sending another wave of fire ripping outwards and converting the monsters into wisps of smoke.

 

The summon vanished after its attack, having fully spent Pascal's gathered magic. The mage twirled her staff and leaned it on her shoulder, glancing left then right to see if there were any more of those shadow monsters that survived the assault. Didn't seem like it, so her stance fell back into something more relaxed.

 

"That wasn't too bad," she mused to Sora, though mostly it was addressed to herself. Her good mood was untarnished, as always. "It should do it, right? Hows about we get something to eat now to celebrate?"

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Xander | Marketplace Jail

 

Xander breathed out an airy chuckle at Illidan’s attempt to lighten the mood.

“You kidnapped me twice,” Xander said. His tone was as stern as usual, but there was an edge of amusement to his voice. “I need to kidnap you at least one more time before we can call it even.” Although Xander’s original intention was to offer Illidan comfort, he found himself relaxing as Illidan slowly inched closer and clasped their hands together in a firm grip. Using physical contact for comfort was a concept Xander was well acquainted with. There were countless times when he allowed his siblings to ground themselves by holding onto him. Hell, he could scarcely remember how many times he had rocked one of his siblings in his arms whispering soft words of comfort to them as they rode out a panic attack. Illidan’s hand was noticeably larger than Xander’s. Staring down at their conjoined fingers, Xander noted the half-demon’s broad fingers, its sharp curved, fingernails that barely pricked into Xander’s skin. It was easy to lose himself in the moment; a small reprieve from the chaos of the jailbreak. He spent a few seconding feeling the calluses brush against the top his hand and wondering just how long those calluses had been there.

 

Alas, it was just a moment. As soon as the word “love” was mentioned, Xander felt himself stiffen.

“That’s—” Xander averted his gaze, worrying his lip as he tried to find a suitable yet not wholly offense way to address the issue. Even when he was a little boy, Xander knew that the declarations of love Father bestowed upon the woman he fancied were not born from actual love. It would be too painful, and hopefully unneeded, to even consider the possibility that Illidan’s own intentions were similar to Father’s, but Xander had, for the better or worst, learned what was and wasn’t love based on Father’ actions and he knew you couldn’t fall in love in a day.

“I… find it hard to believe you could have such affection for me when we barely know each other,” Xander said. Gods, it was hard to think critically when Illidan’s voice sounded so intimate like he was speaking to someone close to him. It was… a lot. More than Xander was used to dealing with while on a mission where he should be thinking of other things.

 

Thankfully, the subject did not persist for long. Relief flooded Xander as Illidan agreed to not harm anyone else.

“Thank you,” Xander said with a dip of his head. There was still the residue of anger from Xander’s earlier outrage pounding in his chest, but it was becoming progressively easier to suppress especially when the subject of an anti-magic generator piqued Xander’s interest. “It would make sense for them to have some sort of device that could temporarily disrupt magic,” he mused. Even if the guards had taken everyone’s weapons, magic would make for a suitable means of protection should the guards try to stop the breakout.

 

Xander intended to ask Illidan about what sort of magical abilities he had when a sudden ringing filled the room. Xander jumped backward, yanking his hand off the table as he scrambled to fetch his communicator. He hurried pulled up the volume setting, rapidly pressing the bottom arrow to lower the following before looking at the top of the cube to see who was calling. When he saw the name “Natsuki” in a bright white font, Xander quickly answered the call and brought it up to his ear.

 

“Yes? Over.”

Xander? This is Natsuki. Raine and I are in police custody, but we’re unharmed and in no danger. Please report your status. Over. ” Xander blinked. The static over the coms made Natsuki’s voice hard to hear, let alone the voices of whoever was talking in the background, but the voice speaking was unmistakably Xander’s friend. He knew Natsuki was in custody because he had caught a glimpse of them while running through the hallways, but that didn’t explain why they had their communicator on their person. Normally Xander would assume that the police had allowed them to use one of the phones in the jail to call someone for help, but, at least to Xander’s knowledge, the cubes could only be used to call each other and there was no way the police could have known that.  “Natsuki? I’m glad to hear you’re okay, but how are you calling me from custody?” Xander walked away from the table, standing with his back to Illidan. “Are you certain you won’t get in trouble for calling someone outside of the jail? Certainly, the police must have—”

 

The building began to shake. Xander, fearing that someone was about to break through the door, hit the mute button so Natsuki wouldn’t have to hear him fighting before turning to face the potential enemy. The door remained shut. Xander knitted his eyebrows in confusion before another tremor shook the building, followed by the sound of shrieking.

“Sweet, Naga,” Xander breathed. “What was that?” Walking towards the door, Xander unjammed the chair from underneath the doorknob before cracking the door open. He began to peer inside the hallway when he heard footsteps approaching. Xander quickly closed the door, allowing only a crack to remain so he could see who was passing by,

 

Marching down the hallway was a  quarian wearing the distinctive outfit of the market’s police force over her exosuit. Not too far behind her was a second officer with long, luscious blue hair and short, fluffy bunny ears. The quarian stopped right in front of the door, causing Xander to take a nervous step backward least she saw him. The rabbit man held his hands behind his back and hummed softly to himself as he began to sway back and forth on the balls of his feet. The quarian scowled down at the walkie-talkie in her hand before lifting it up to her mouth.

“This is sheriff Ashaya’Elda vas Neema reporting in,” the quarian said in a slightly panicked voice. “There’s been a breach on the northern side of the building by an unknown assailant. Cells in that area been damaged to some capacity. All officers in the station are to head to the northern side to deal with this threat. Out.” Ashaya lowered the walkie-talkie, letting out an anxious sigh while she rubbed the side of her helmet.

 

“Ooh, you sounded so professional, Ashie!” the bunny man cooed. “Are we going to fight the big bad men who attacked the jail?”

“I believe we may be dealing with the same dragon that was reported rampaging through the market barely an hour ago,” Ashaya said. The bunny man gasped, starry-eyed as he squished his cheeks between his hands.

“We’re going to punch a dragon?” he asked in awe.

“No, we’re not punching a dragon. Besides, we can't rule out the possibility of this being the only attacker. There might be someone else.

“We’re going to punch two dragons?!?”

“We’re not punching anyone, Orsem!” Ashaya snapped. She spun and shoved a finger onto Orsem’s chest, glowering at him. “There’s one dragon and there’s maybe.... I don't know!" Ashaya threw up her hands in frustration. “Someone else or not! Does this matter? We need to go to the weapons locker ASAP so we can stop these bosh’tets from destroying the jail!”

 

“Are we gonna punch them with our guns?” Orsem asked as he excitedly bounced on his feet. “Are we going to throw the guns at them? Ooh wait, wait, I know! We’re  going to climb on top of them and poke them in the eye with the butt of our guns!” There was a brief pause where neither of the officers said anything. Ashaya stared at Orsem as he clutched his hands to his chest and wagged his fluffy tail so hard his entire rear began to sway with the rhythm of his wagging. Even though Ashaya’s face was mostly obscured by her mask, Xander could see the exasperation clearly on her face.

“We’re going,” she said. Ashaya grabbed Orsem’s wrist and began pulling him down the hallway. As they disappeared from sight, Xander could hear Orsem gleefully chanting, “We’re going to punch a dragon! We’re going to punch a draaaaaaagon!”

 

Once he was certain the guards had passed, Xander backed away from the door. Turning the mute on his cube off, Xander raised the communicator back to his face.

“Forgive the interruption. I just heard some police talking about the jail being attacked. The dragon from earlier has breached the building you’re being held in. Other officers are coming to help fight the dragon, but I am unsure if protection of prisoners will be a high priority. I’ll be heading to your location to assist if need be. I'll call you back once I'm at a secure position. Out.” Xander pocked the cube once more before walking back to Illidan. “We need to go,” he said as he grabbed Illidan’s hand before tugging him towards the door. Xander checked the hallway for any other officers and once he was certain no one else was around he opened the door and began to drag Illidan down a hallway.

 

Unfortunately for Xander, he couldn’t quite remember where the other two agents were. He began to head back to where he thought they were, but, as the quarian had hinted at, most of the police were hurrying off to defeat the dragon who was apparently in the same location as Natsuki. Cursing under his breath, Xander ducked his head and took a right to avoid a small group of panicked looking police. As Xander headed down the hallway, he saw the shadow of a police officer running towards the end of the hallway. Turning back would inevitably get them caught so Xander decided to open the nearest door and drag Illidan with him before roughly shutting the door close.

 

Xander pressed both of his hands against the door, cold sweat dripping down his face as he heard the police rush pass the door. Even after they passed, Xander did not move from the door for an entire minute before pushing himself off it. With a relieved sigh, Xander spun around to see exactly what kind of room he dragged himself and Illidan into. Oddly enough, the room was almost barren. The gray paint on the walls was beginning to chip off and the floor was covered in all sorts of dust bunnies. The only noticeable object in the entire room was a box sitting in the back of the room with all sorts of flashing lights on its surface. Xander walked towards the back, bending down on his knees as he blew the dust off it. Whatever words were on the box had long faded, but if all the lights and strange tubes in the box were any indications then the two agents had stumbled upon something more important than a fancy AC.

 

“Your anti-magic generator theory might have been right,” Xander said as he wiped the dust off with his hand. “There’s a strange box here. I’ve never seen anything like it, but it doesn’t seem to be plugged into anything so I don’t think it has anything to do with powering electricity.” Xander examined the box, trying to find an obvious off switch that most machines had. “I’m not sure how to turn it off. I don’t see any buttons on this thing.” Xander glanced over his shoulder at Illidan. “You wouldn’t happen to know how to work with machines, would you?”

Edited by Doctortear

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[ Jackpot. - Marketplace Jail - Illidan ]

 

Xander talked with what Illidan could assume was Natsuki's voice before suddenly hushing himself. He could hear more voices - he couldn't tell who those were - but as soon as they stopped, Xander had grabbed his hand again and was once again leading him down a hallway. It wasn't long before they'd had to duck into another room.

 

Illidan followed the sound of Xander's voice to the back of said room. If this was the anti-magic generator and these police were half as competent as he thought they were, there wouldn't just be some off switch somewhere. No, the only solution the Demon Hunter had in mind was to break it.

 

"I'm useless with machines unless it involves breaking them. If my suspicions are correct, though, then they wouldn't just put an off switch on it and call it a day. That'd make it too easy..." Illidan drew one of his Warglaives and tentatively tapped a tip around, listening for the clanging of metal on metal. It wasn't as simple as smashing it - no, he had to be a little more detailed than that.

 

The lack of sight certainly made things a little harder than he was used to.

 

Eventually, he started tracing the box with a tip of the Warglaive, found a tube, and thrust downward to cut it off. He repeated with each tube in turn. Destruction was one thing he was good at - if the earlier fight with that dragon-beast and the breaking into the jail were any indication - but unlike earlier, he was being careful and calculated instead of brash and forceful.

 

Once he was certain the last tube was cut, he motioned for Xander to step back as he proceeded to finally get into the smashing - there were undoubtedly going to be a few sparks and he didn't want the king to get injured. He smashed into and cut at the box in every direction imaginable, utterly destroying it.

 

With the anti-magic generator busted, Illidan's Spectral Sight roared back to life, the emerald flames of his eyes brightening.

 

"...now that's more like it. My Spectral Sight has returned... and I'd bet your 'Dragon Vein' has returned, as well. And if our powers are back..."

 

Chances were that every other person in the place had their powers back, too.

 

~~
[ The return of magic. - Marketplace Jail - Nora & Carol ]

 

Nora had to blink his eyes a few times. His Spectral Sight had returned! "Carol, our powers!"

 

Sure enough, Carol could see her alchemy working. "Now this is more like it. Looks like we have your friend to thank for returning our magic. Now stand back." A little Fire alchemy was more than enough to blow out the glass. "...I'm afraid we have a greater challenge with getting past the bars."

 

"Shoot, I don't know any barrier magic."

 

"I need to wait for my alchemy to recharge a bit. It'll be a few minutes..."

 

Hopefully the others would find out about their returned powers quick enough.

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Keaton | Kaden's Wares

 

As Ray began to bark at Leo to get off of her, Keaton’s ears twitched at the sound of something approaching. It wasn’t until that moment did Keaton realize there weren’t any other patrons wandering around Kaden’s stall. It was almost like Kaden’s little corner of the marketplace had been abandoned. Keaton had grown far too comfortable with the relative safeness of the market. He didn’t notice the strange black, inky creatures until they had the group surrounded.

 

Keaton instinctually let out a low growl, pulling Anders closer to his chest. He didn’t even have the chance before the creatures suddenly charged forward. Ranulf leaped backward, hissing at the creatures as he protectively moved in front of the cardboard box. Kaden, seeing one of the creatures run towards the stall, quickly grabbed Selkie, who let out a loud squeak, and pulled her into the stall and away from the creature’s outstretched claws. A blinding light enveloped Kaden’s body and within seconds an enormous, white nine-tailed fox leaped out from the stall and launched himself into the creature, snarling loudly.

 

Leo, who was about to give Ray an angry retort, yelped with surprise as four of the creatures began racing towards him and Ray. He yanked a book out of the clasp in his belt and quickly flipped it out. Muttering a hasty incantation under his breath, Leo raised his free arm, beckoning a swarm of writing vines that created a barrier between him, Ray, and the creatures. The thorny vines lashed out at the creatures, maintaining the formation of a wall while also trying to attack the monsters.

 

Having bought himself a little time, he scrambled off of Ray and tumbled to his feet.

“I wouldn’t have made your arms fall asleep if you hadn’t picked me up in the first place!” Leo snapped at Ray. Looking back at his temporary wall, Leo huffed out an annoyed Tch!. “Notwithstanding my current annoyance with you, I would appreciate it if you could help me deal with those things.” Leo motioned towards the dark creatures before taking a step back. A magical rune appeared underneath Leo’s feet shining with a dark purple light as he prepared another spell.

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(This magic.... - White Kyurem)

 

The police were coming. But as they came... White Kyurem felt it surge back. Their core. What they were. The dragon's entire body shivered involuntarily, feathers fluffing. The spikes on their shoulders once again glowed orange, and their skin sucked in oxygen more greedily. White Kyurem's lips curled, white gums visible, and they rumbled. So many coming. They snapped their head up and roared, loosing a pulse of earth magic. The pale grey dragon's magical strength was greater than their physical strength - and it was returned. Excellent. The magic was almost as a shockwave.

 

The Earth Power emanated out, tearing down more walls. Geysers of earth magic and fire shot from the ground as officers and prisoners scrambled to dodge. If they could. The ground shuddered and cracked with the force of the magical pulse, finally stilling with the end of the magic. Kyurem's head was lowered, and their body had started bleeding ice magic again - as well as magic-rich clear blood. Their white, yellow-scleraed eyes still glared at their opponents, though. They wouldn't show too much weakness. They must be whole again. And they were one step closer.

 

(Oh, perfect. - Bowser)

 

Well, this was absolutely lovely. The ground shook beneath Bowser, causing him to stiffen. He was bowled over by a Earth Power-induced geyser, landing on his shell and involuntarily whimpering slightly in pain. Bowser suppressed the whimpering as quickly as he could, mentally growling at himself. The magic had struck him rather hard in the gut and chest, and his current position made it hard to decide whether to stay still or struggle. Ugh... he'd best get himself out of this defenceless position, he guessed. Bowser bit his lip and began to kick and thrash, rocking his shell back and forth ... at least, when its spikes didn't stick in the ground. "Gah! Darn it!"

 

(Sayonara - Burakki)

 

Burakki didn't notice the return of his magic at first. That was, until the walls started streaking by. Suddenly he was running a whole lot faster. And... oh. Yes! Something had disabled whatever was suppressing magic. Burakki's tail wagged stiffly. He sneered and started to actively will himself to run faster. It certainly sermed to work. He heard an officer's yelp of surprise as he ran between their legs. Good luck catching me. Heh. The Shiny Umbreon continued running, eyes scanning the area. He darted down another hall. Was it...? Where's the exit?

Edited by DuskOfTheStars

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Sora | Food, Please!

He felt the air rush against his back, Pascal's surge of magic releasing at her summon. With a grunt, he leapt the last bit of distance he needed to evade her area of effect, hitting the ground with his shoulder and rolling back to his feet. Sora could feel the heat of the fire that Bloodflamme created, the light of which momentarily chased away the darkness of the Black Market. 

 

And just like that, the handful of Shadows were torched, disintegrating into mist instead of ash that faded in a single breath. Whistling a single note in appreciation, Sora leaned back on his heels and grinned in the next heartbeat. "Cool!" he complimented, Oathkeeper vanishing in sparks of light. Running a hand down the back of his head, Sora waited for the last remnants of Pascal's magic to fade before moving closer again. At her suggestion, he nodded enthusiastically. "Oh man, food would be amazing! You were saying something about knowing a place?" Sora replied, prodding at his short-term memory for Pascal's words before the Heartless appeared. 

 

They started walking, Sora a pace or two behind Pascal so she could lead and he, follow. Despite the lack of Heartless, Sora wasn't too relaxed. Actually, it was because of the lack of Heartless that he was a little guarded. They hardly attacked in such small numbers....

 

Concern melted away as the scent of food reached him and his mouth began to water. Up ahead, a little stall stood with lots of lighting, containing only a makeshift kitchen, a short countertop, and a few stools to sit upon. Tiny was putting it lightly. But it didn't seem to phase the creature that was too-large for the stall as its shoulder bumped into the set of pots that hung from the awning. 

 

As they drew closer, Sora realized that he couldn't sort out how to identify the chef. Hunched over and broad chested with thick shoulders, dark scales covered any part of its body that wasn't hidden behind clothing. Fins sprouted from the sides of its face, fanning backwards as a pair of forest green horn jutted upwards at a slight angle. The face was elongated, kind of reptilian and possessing multiple whiskers that weren't longer than Sora's arm. Alongside the typical two arms, the creature had another pair that looked as if someone attached them backwards. 

 

Sora was just starting to squint and inspect a hole in the back of the chef's shirt when a giant, single, emerald eye slid open and oriented on the duo. "I'll be with you in just a moment," the creature grumbled. It sounded like a bag of rocks rolling down a hill to Sora's ears, the words tricky to parse out. The eyelid closed and Sora made a face.

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15173d25115509cd0948ab8434aba27b.png [ vincent ; -- add. echo ; -- for. s & p ]

-- status.

dormouse ; wound

demios ; dormant }

for you, the abyss.

--

 

"That stall was delightful, Echo." A well-dressed blond man with his long hair tied back in a silky low ponytail claps his gloved hands together as he speaks, moving almost as if to some invisible tune as he weaves his way through the streets of the unfamiliar bazaar. Though his manner and face are calm and friendly, when Vincent Nightray skates his gaze around the numerous small shops before him, there is only a cruel curiosity in his yellow-red eyes.

 

"But you would think they would carry gloves of better quality," he sighs, following his words with an action; he withdraws a pair of white gloves from seemingly nowhere within the large black cloak draped across his body, and stares at the item with bored interest. "My dear Elliot cannot start another school year without proper gloves. And Gilbert doesn't even care!"

 

"Lord Elliot gave his gloves to Leo, master," the girl beside him says, her arms laden with shopping bags from their earlier excursions. "Echo believes he was very firm in saying he didn't want any more gifts from you."

 

"I feel like such a mother sometimes!" Vincent continues, ignoring Echo completely. "I buy them all these things, and Ellie doesn't take time out of his day to see how I am. He took offense to me visiting him last night only because I scared that little pet of his."

 

"You nearly landed on Leo when you jumped in through the window, master."

 

"And Gilbert won't even let me into his household! I feel like I am being purposefully persecuted."

 

"The world is against you, master." 

 

Vincent scoffs in response, taking a quick glance at the gloves in his hand before he throws them over his shoulder, shrugging. "Find a place to put those for now. I don't want to think about this anymore." Without waiting, he turns back and begins to make his way down the street, scanning around for his newest target in his current mission to find suitable items for both of his -- ungrateful -- brothers. Echo, catching the gloves with quick reflexes and slipping them into one of the many bags, catches up without hesitation just as Vincent comes to abrupt stop.

 

"Echo," he breathes, sounding positively delighted -- a hand pressed against his chest in mock imitation of his excitement, and he points towards a small stall a couple of steps before them. "Look -- a commoner's kitchen."

 

"Echo believes that is a food stall, Master Nightray."

 

"It's just like the ones from my childhood," Vincent replies, ignoring Echo's correction, "when we traveled and saw all the wonders the world had to offer. Of course, Gilbert was busy trying to ensure we weren't beaten to death, but" -- and here, a laugh, entirely too casual for the situation at hand -- "it was pleasant to see what others had and to wish for the death of the aristocracy." 

 

"That would include you, master."

 

Vincent hums. "So it would. A shame -- but nevermind that, let's eat!" Without waiting for Echo's response, he begins to move forward once more, eyes locked onto the little stall in the distance. 

 

As he comes within reach of the small stall, the blond noble squints slightly as he realises the surrounding area is open, the stall a part of the dark streets around them with only small seats in front for customers to eat -- how extremely interesting, and absolutely disgusting. There was not even a door to separate the outside from in! 

 

"Hello," Vincent calls into the shop, moving as he speaks; a gloved hand reaches out and meets the back of another patron, a young boy who only seconds ago had been staring intensely at the turned back of the cook, and pushes him, hard. The blond man hops nimbly onto the stool the other boy had been occupying only a moment before, crossing his legs as he gathers his clothes and smooths out his cravat. "I would like -- Echo, what do they eat here?"

 

"Echo doesn't know." The white-haired girl, trailing seconds after her command, shoves her way into the small space with their numerous shopping bags. 
 

"I would like whatever," Vincent declares. "Give it to me. Echo -- leave the bags outside, you're going to make a mess trying to fit it all into here. Oh, but hand me the new pipe, I want to see if I can use it to finally poison --" Murmuring to himself, the blond looks briefly upwards and cocks an eyebrow at the chef, not at all fazed by her otherworldly appearance. "Well? I don't have all day. Do you need money? Echo, give her some money."

 

From within one of her large sleeves, Echo pulls out a coinpurse and holds it out to Pascal. 

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Ponbiscuit proved stalwart and kept up with the dragon easily, even through the milling crowds of the market. But when they got close, the dragon sensed them, and gladly smashed through the walls of a nearby building with a pommel and a gout of flames. More screaming--this time more physical too--reached her ears. Ponbiscuit stumbled, and Sacred gritted her teeth, glaring at the monster. This called for drastic measures, clearly.

 

"Ponbiscuit, up!" she begin lifting up with shimmering wings before Sacred even finished her name. Sacred brought her sword in a wide sweep, and a wave of shining energy followed it--And promptly dispersed into raw mana again as it impacted something in midair. Sacred paused, the rest of her attack halted and thrumming, waiting for her to release it. Ponbiscuit stayed in the air, and the dragon turned to face her, snarling, the fire gone from its body. Something inside gashed it, and as Sacred looked when the dragon turned, she realized that they had crashed into the prison, of all the places in the marketplace! She took a deep breath as an even stronger wave of anger swept over her--the mana around her started flaring an even stronger green in resonance. Even so, it would be useless in an anti-magic field.

 

But that doesn't matter.

 

Her shield solidified from mana to a solid metal diamond, as she crouched down just enough to draw in a breath of energy from the earth, then leapt up, flipped, and smashed her sword down on the dragon's location. A wave of air and green mana swept out, momentarily forming a massive plant with broad and shining leaves, scenting the air with the scent of a hazy summer afternoon in the forest. Wait, how did that not disperse? The dragon's fires lit again--The Harbinger also didn't seem to have much effect on it--and when it bared its teeth in an evil grin, Sacred felt that same welling of power as before, when the earth cracked and erupted. She sucked in a breath and braced herself, bringing her shield up as a geyser exploded in front of her and showered her with rocks and heat.

It hurt badly, and Sacred barely managed to stop herself from recoiling in pain. I've lived through worst, she told herself sternly. 

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Natsuki [ Marketplace Jail Cell ; this is fine ] 

 

Natsuki frowned at Xander’s words. They were glad to hear that he was alright, but was using the communicator something that they had to worry about? They hadn’t been explicitly told that they were allowed to use their communicator and the idea of breaking the rules sent a pang of guilt and fear through them, but surely if it had been left with them --

 

Reverberations traveled up from the floor to their feet. Something big was approaching. 

 

There was no time to react or give a warning before something large and grey tore into the cell. All Natsuki could do to resist the impact was twist away from the wall and shield their eyes with their arms and nictitating membranes. A shower of stones and dust crashed into their back and they collided with the ground. Pain shot up their elbows and the wind was knocked out of their lungs. Distantly, they noted that their cube had fallen from their grasp and had tumbled off into a corner somewhere. 

 

Struggling for air in the thick atmosphere they pushed themself to their feet, ignoring the pain in their arms. “Raine!?” They coughed, then pulled their collar over their nose to filter out the worst of the choking dust. It was difficult to see through the chaos and cloudy membranes over their eyes, but they had to move immediately. They stumbled forward, trying to avoid tripping over the pieces of brick and mortar in their path. 

 

It felt wrong to start trying to escape without verifying that their teammate was okay, but if she knew anything about fights Raine would be doing the same. The situation had simply happened too quickly, and trying to help each other would just get them both killed. In any other circumstances…

 

They didn’t get far before the ground shook and opened under their feet. Walls crumbled around them, chunks of stone the size of their torso falling to the ground with deafening crashes. A few bursts of flame shot out of the new cracks in the floor. I thought magic wouldn’t work here!? Obviously their assumption had been wrong, and they paid the price for it when their arm got too close to a gout of flame. They jerked their arm away and grit their teeth, but couldn’t stop the ragged groan of pain from escaping their throat. Just had to keep moving. Everything else could be dealt with later. 
 

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~Tara and Kouji- This can’t be HAPPENING.~

 

Tara woke up to find herself in some sort of containment chamber… and the sounds of Kouji shouting. She remembered he didn’t like being trapped in cages, but this was weird. The bars looked much more dangerous than in a normal jail cell, they radiated electricity. Kouji didn’t seem to realize that, it seemed. That, or he was too scared and angry to actually use a little bit of common sense. Because what happened next scared the ever living crap out of Tara.

 

HEY! LET ME OUT OF HERE!” He tried to grasp the bars, but he found himself on the other side of the cell. The boy was out cold. Tara sighed and sat up on the cold, hard floor. Moron, she thought. Tara decided she was stuck here, that there was no way she could pick a lock on a cell with electric bars. Hopefully the voltage wasn’t too high. She didn’t want to sit next to a dead body, much less the body of her friend. Tara checked his pulse- he was okay, just unconscious. And a little burnt on the hands.

 

The earth seemed to rumble, and the bars just… disappeared? Tara noticed the ground was messed up, cracked, showing the foundation and ground beneath the floor. Flames shot from the earth a few cells away, which after a while seemed to go out. The walls seemed to crack, which caused Tara to drag Kouji to the center of the cell. She didn’t want to lose her friend, not at all! This couldn’t be happening. No, she was back with Evonna, still shopping. Yeah, right. She wished. That dragon thing passed her cell, but it seemed to pay her no mind. She was sure that it was because she was weak in this state, but it seemed to be on a mission so that may also have been it. Tara didn’t have any time to wonder, she needed to go and find her D-Tector. Dragging Kouji by the hand, she continued out of her cell and searched for a map. Hopefully if she had a map she’d know exactly where to go. But if it didn’t…. she was going to have to risk her neck and search.

 


 

~Evonna and Chikako- Let’s get some Korean food!~

 

The two girls walked and talked, Evonna starting to like Chikako more as they spoke. She smiled at her, a wide grin that only her brother Jehan would ever see out of her. Maybe Ev was too trusting, but oh well. Chikako was gorgeous, Ev liked the gleam in her eyes when she started to talk about styling hair. She talked about how she was the go-to for when anyone wanted a trim or to change up their look, and Ev noticed that Chika seemed to talk with her hands a lot. She was so animated when she talked about something she was passionate about. Evonna usually was not, but she didn’t mind this one bit, she actually enjoyed it.

 

Chikako made a small clapping gesture, as if she had a sudden eureka. “Oh! There’s this one place we should go to before we meet this ‘Pascal’ girl. It sells… uh… Oh yeah! Korean food! I’m not entirely sure what Korean is but it’s really good food! Come with me! My treat!” Evonna laughed as the excited girl took the lead, but she stopped laughing when Chikako took her hand. She blinked, but kept walking. Chikako had a slight bounce in her step, which was rather cute. They navigated through crowds and continued towards a small stall with a very tiny kitchen. Not too far away was… Oh, it was Pascal! This was perfect timing!

 

Except she was…. interacting with some strange blonde man. Someone else was with him, a female, holding some sort of purse to Pascal. “What the hell…?” Evonna said as she approached the stall. Chikako raised a raven eyebrow as she walked in, not much room in the stall but it was just enough for the girls. “Pascal, hey, what’s going on here?

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Raine -- Marketplace Jail

 

Natsuki? I’m glad to hear you’re okay, but how are you calling me from custody?Xander's voice came from the communicator. What a relief. Are you certain you won’t get in trouble for calling someone outside of the jail? Certainly, the police must have—

 

The building rumbled, and an old friend burst from the back wall. All she could really do was press herself against a corner and protect her head from the flying debris.

 

"I'm fine," she managed to answer Natsuki, although she was unsure if the other agent had heard her. Already, people were beginning to panic and to mobilize. Xander's voice continued on in the communicator: "The dragon from earlier has breached the building you’re being held in. Other officers are coming to help fight--"

 

Haha. If only he knew.  With no magic or weapons, the best option was to flee and wait for reinforcements. But, she realized, the ice dragon was also being affected by the anti-magic. Anything not within its claws' grasp was safe. At least, until some good-intentioned idiot decided to--

 

The mana.

 

Magic surged back and her mana sense returned, feeling like a cloth lifted from her eyes. Taking no time to wonder how, she threw down a casting circle immediately. The lack of a staff was an inconvenience, but she was by no means helpless without it -- it was just a focus. However, having checked earlier, they did take her unicorn horn, which was something that influenced her abilities. Made sense. They probably didn't want her to stab anyone with that thing (even if, to her, the thought of marring it with blood was appalling).

 

Open palms held in front of her, she gathered mana and called upon the holy powers to smite the dragon -- but the monster was faster in unleashing its own magic. Raine felt the earth shake and the heat rise under her feet a heartbeat before she was forced to open her eyes, her concentration broken and her spell interrupted by pelted rocks. Scoffing under her breath, she shielded herself with her arms, jumping backwards and out of the way of an erupting crack in the floor.

 

She ran the handful of paces to the hallway with the two way glass, now that the electric bars were disabled. The cells were falling apart from the assault. With her back to the mirror, she held her hands out and gathered her mana, determined to give her spell another try.

 

"Light, transform into spears and run this evil through!"

 

Runes swirled around her. They vanished in a flash of light when her spell came to completion and she called its name. "Holy Lance!"

 

A shining square glyph appeared under the ice dragon. She could see it -- no, feel it -- leaking magic, now that it was this close. Above each side of the glyph materialized prismatic swords that rained down like a piercing torrent, each blade glowing brightly upon contact and then dissipating into feathers. 

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Pascal -- Jeon House

 

A man had come to the stall at around the same time they did.

 

His most distinctive feature were his two-toned eyes, and if Pascal knew anything about all the people with mismatched eyes, is that they were supposed to be special. She wondered if she could make herself get a red or a blue eye, just for the fashion statement.

 

He shoved Sora out of the way and Pascal wondered if it was on purpose. She frowned and was about to confront him about it, but the woman who was with him came up to her with a coin pouch and a command from the man to 'order whatever'.

 

"I'll get 30 pajeons and one of those fished shaped desserts," Pascal said to the cook. She looked at Sora, then added, "and a shortrib burrito. And one more jeon for the guy over there!"

 

The aquatic-looking creature didn't even flinch at her request. Their eye was focused on the patrons of the shop, but the rest of her limbs went to work pouring the batter. One of the smaller arms accepted the money that Pascal had counted out from the coin pouch that the strange white haired woman had handed her, then payed the rest by chip.

 

Finally noticing the teen and her friend, Pascal looked Evonna right in the eye, voice flat, expression uncharacteristically focused and determined. "I'm gonna eat 29 pajeons," she stated. "And no one will be able to stop me."

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Circuitraider | At Your Service

 

Shifting carefully to remain out of the way but still at a better eye-level with the organics, Circuitraider frowned as the orange creature decided to buy more fruit. She was... confused, by the yellow being (was this Mrs. Pacman or did the name of the stand make no reference to any actual creature?), to say the least. It seemed more and more that Pascal's words about "going with it" were what the Autobot eventually would just do.  As much as she wanted to question the rules of this universe....

 

"'Meat and grain'?" she repeated, lifting her head slightly. Had she seen such a place while she was wandering? No, she hadn't. But it was a fair assumption to believe that this beast would know where to go for those. The nutrition requirements for organics was something she did not envy, as interesting as some of the processes might be to her fellows. Glowing blue optics traveled down to the bundle of oversized fruit. "If we're done here then...," Circuitraider prodded, letting the words trail off as she glanced at all three organics.

 

Already kneeling, the scout tucked her arms in against her body as plates of metal and spinning gears began to rearrange themselves. Pieces slid or clattered into place and her bipedal shape remade itself. When all four tires rested against the dark ground, the trunk popped open. "Place everything into the compartment. If something doesn't fit -" The passenger door clicked and eased open. "- then put it in the cab."

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Sora | Bon Appé - Hey!

He'd only been on the stool for less than a heartbeat when a hand roughly pressed against his shoulder blade, force sending him mostly sideways and a bit forward. Gasping from the suddenness, Sora plummeted to the ground, grunting as he hit. His foot caught in the feet of the stool but a weight kept it from falling over with him. "H-Hey! What was -!" The rest of his words instantly died in his throat. Propping himself up on a hip and an elbow, Sora quickly found the culprit. A tall man with blond hair, talking to Pascal and another girl with white hair. "Huh?" Sora breathed, mouth slightly open and eyes widening a fraction in bewilderment. 

 

He clenched his jaw shut tight, frowning nearly to the point of a pout, furrowed brows and all. Unhooking his foot from his lost stool just as two more people came up to the stall, Sora angled his head and face towards the ground, trying to let the heat of humiliation wash away. Tainted with anger as it was, the feeling didn't leave too quickly. He picked himself up, dusting off his clothes while still refusing to look at the others as Pascal made her order. In a final thought about details, he brought his hands up to his hair and ruffled the unruly strands in case any dirt had landed among them.

 

Finally feeling a bit more composed, Sora turned towards the food stall with its sudden surge of customers. "Oh! Hey Evonna!" he waved, greeting the girl as soon as he saw her. His face brightened with a smile. "Who's your friend?" he asked, barely catching Pascal's very serious intentions. Sora's eyebrows lifted with wonder. "Are you sure?" 

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Xander | Marketplace Jail

 

Watching with a contemplative expression, Xander took a step back as Illidan dragged his warglaives across the machine’s sleek surface, the rhythmic tapping of metal against metal ringing throughout the room. Xander was about to question if Illidan knew what he was doing when the demon hunter suddenly reared back and cleanly sliced off one of the tubes jammed into the machine. Xander took a few steps backward as Illidan thoroughly smashed the machine, pinpricks of white sparks flying in the air as Illidan beat the machine into an unrecognizable mesh of dental metal and live wires. Almost immediately after the machine was crushed into a pulp, Xander could feel a familiar tingling sensation underneath his skin. While Illidan rejoiced in the return of his sight, Xander began slowly opening and closing an outstretched hand as the draconic magic seeped in his blood returned to him once more.

 

“You’d be correct,” Xander said solemnly as he lowered his hand. “It appears that our magic is back, but this is no time to celebrate. That generator affected everyone including our friend from earlier.” Turning off the generator, let alone breaking into a jail, wasn’t the smartest decision you ever made Xander’s brain helpfully supplied but he quickly pushed the thought away. His doubts about the break-in notwithstanding, Xander was somewhat glad the dragon had returned. Not only did he have a second chance to rescue Reshiram, but with the assist of the cops, his chances of successfully bringing Reshiram had to be greater. Still—Xander frowned to himself, his fingers brushing against the communicator hidden in the folds of his tabard—he had to worry about more than one agent. Last he had heard on the communicator, Natsuki hadn’t responded and while he was surprised they had their communicator he highly doubted the cops would let them keep their taser. If anything, Natsuki’s lack of response was all the more reason to try and find them before going to look for anything else weapons included.

 

Motioning for Illidan to follow with his hand, Xander pried open the door and, after peering out to make sure no one was outside, Xander walked out in the hallway and began to head in the direction he thought he last saw Raine and Natsuki. Fortunately, or rather, unfortunately, considering the circumstances, Xander didn’t need to rely on his memory thanks to the worrying cracks in the ground, breaking the concrete and giving way to shallow crevices of the opened earth. As Xander navigated through the eruptions in the ground, several police officers hurried past him. Xander stopped, hand instinctually inching towards Siegfried’s sheath at the sight of one of the police officer’s own sword, but the officers only spared Xander a quick glance before continuing towards the epicenter of the chaos. Xander halted in place, eyes narrowing as the police began to turn down a hallway before he threw caution to the wind and began to follow the cops. Chances were they were far more interested in finding the dragon and taking it down than anything else.

 

Following the cops proved to be the right decision for not even two minutes later the hallway Xander was running through gave way to a gaping hole in the middle of the facility with torn down walls, prisoners climbing over each other to escape the fight, and a very familiar pair of piercing, yellow eyes. Hot-white fury surged through Xander's veins as his hand surged back to Siegfried's hilt. The regret of letting Reshiram get kidnaped gave way to anger at the creature who absorbed them, pushing Xander to step towards the creature with the intent on finishing the fight from earlier. As Xander moved forward, he got a better view of the surrounding area. In the corner of his vision, a figure with a familiar blue outfit stumbled aimlessly through the rubble. Xander looked away from the figure, did a doubletake, and then turned around to see the figure more clearly. It was Natsuki; they were cradling their arm like it was injured as they trekked away from the dragon, staggering so much that Xander was almost convinced they were going to collapse.

 

"Natsuki!" Calling out his friend's name, Xander's anger transformed into worry as he leaped over a rock peaking out of the concrete and made his way to his friend. "Natsuki," he said again as he drew nearer. "I'm sorry, I tried to come as soon as I heard that the jail was attacked." Scuffing his boots on the pile of rocks he was climbing over, Xander slid down the rocks and quickly made his way to Natsuki's side. He stepped into their personal space, moving close enough so that they could lean on him if they needed to. "Are you hurt?" Xander asked soft. With pursed lips and eyes full of concern, Xander glanced over Natsuki's body to check for injuries, his eyes continually darting to the arm they were holding delicately. While Xander inched closer to Natsuki least they fall over, he glanced up at someone not too far away with a familiar mess of white hair. Xander was about to call out to Raine to ask if she was okay, but before he did so runes began to appear around her body and she shouted aloud, summoning bright, glowing swords that rained down from the air. Xander subconsciously pulled Natsuki closer away from the swords and the hideous dragon hissing at the police that were beginning to swarm it. "Do you need to leave?" Xander asked as he looked down at Natsuki. "I... do not think I could leave Reshiram in good conscious, but I have no issue with taking you to safety albeit perhaps a temporary safety." A pause and then Xander added as an afterthought, "I'm sure the police wouldn't want you to get caught up in the crossfire. Prisoner or not, it is their job to protect the public."

 

Edited by Doctortear

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[ Onward to battle! - Marketplace Jail - Illidan ]

 

Right - he'd almost forgotten about that dragon freak. Well, now it was time for some well-earned payback. Hopefully the prison guards were more occupied with the beast and less with the resulting jailbreak. If anything, maybe they thought the beast was the cause of the jailbreak. Technically it was, but still.

 

"Lead the way, Xander." Now that Illidan could see again, it made navigating the prison all the easier. He nearly cursed when he felt the edge of his hoof catch on one of the cracks, though he supposed it was only more proof of the dragon-beast's presence. Illidan nearly froze at the sight of the police, but they seemed to almost completely ignore him and Xander and went onwards towards the chaos. That had to be where the dragon-beast was.

 

Lo and behold, it was where that beast was. It seemed time for round 2, but Xander was preoccupied with helping a very much injured Natsuki. That just left him, Raine, and anyone else who was around...

 

[ A brief reunion... - Marketplace Jail - Nora, Carol, and Illidan ]

 

To Nora's surprise, just after Carol managed to conjure a barrier to slip under the bars with, Illidan returned with his royal friend. Seeing as the king was preoccupied, now was when the younger Demon Hunter had quite a few choice words for his Lord...

 

"WHY THE HELL DID YOU ABANDON US BACK THERE?! DO YOU KNOW HOW RECKLESS THAT WAS?!"

 

Both Illidan and Carol had to back up a bit, and Illidan was reduced to stammering. After getting over the shock, Carol tugged on Nora's arm. "I get that you're angry, but your friend is more equipped to handle that beast than we are, even after taking my alchemy into account. If anything, we should find where the weapons are being held..."

 

Nora stiffened a little before huffing, and both he and Carol disappeared into the prison's hallways. Still, it left Illidan wondering...

 

Had he done something wrong?

 

~~

 

[ OH SWEET ARCEUS!! - Kaden's Wares - Ray ]

 

Apparently the guy knew magic of some sort, because she hadn't even had a chance to scream before vines came between the two of them and the four shadowy... things... that came after them.

 

But holy mother of Arceus, this guy was snooty and bossy! It seemed his handsome looks were only skin deep, but considering everything, Ray decided to drop it until she knew they weren't about to die. It only took one glance to see that these things were physical fighters that left themselves wide open to ranged attacks. Ray reached into her bag, pulled out Tsuki's PokeBall, and brought out the Lunala once more.

 

"...Ray, why in the Distortion World do you have Litten ears and a tail??"

 

"Not the time, Tsuki! I need a Thunderbolt, ASAP!"

 

"At what?"

 

"Those. ANY of those!" Ray pointed out the shadow creatures, and Tsuki was quick to jolt them with the aforementioned Thunderbolt. Hopefully it was enough to at least stun them, if not thin their numbers a little.

 

~~

 

[ Outside the Jail - Oblivionix & Noreillan ]

 

"...okay, this sight is just sad." Oblivionix sighed at the scene before her. "Can't just leave 'em like this. C'mon, bro, gimme a hand here!"

"...do I have to? Fine." Noreillan stood on the left while Oblivionix stood on the right. Both were poised behind the dragon-turtle creature. "On three. One..."

"Two..."

"THREE!!" Both siblings shoved on the dragon-turtle's shell, aiming to push him back into an upright position.

Edited by hikarinomemori

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Anders [ let gO !! ]

 

Anders should have been paying more attention to his surroundings, especially in such a crowded and unfamiliar place. Stupid, to be so easily distracted. Maybe he’d have been able to notice earlier had he been better rested, but as it was his warning yowl came too late to be of any help. 

 

His fur puffed out and his lips curled into a snarl. He tried to stand up to arch his back and better see the specters, but Keaton’s thick arms restrained him against his vibrating chest. 

 

One thing that Anders and cats had in common was that neither enjoyed being trapped. All thoughts of staying where he was safe from the not-shades were chased from his mind by flee flee flee. Justice was of little help; though he didn’t have a fear of confinement, Anders’ emotions still affected him and he burst forward to protect his friend. 

 

Anders’ fur diffused the blue glow from his skin, but his eyes shone clearly. They renewed their attempts to get free with Justice’s strength, uncaring if they hurt Keaton in the midst of Anders’ panic. 
 

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~Evonna and Chikako- She’s my girlfriend- er, my friend who happens to be a girl.~

 

Evonna first blinked at Pascal. “Girl, you’re crazy. Don’t get sick please.” Then she looked at Sora, smiled a little, and waved. “Hey Sora. This is Chikako, a ninja from another world. She’s pretty— cool. Pretty cool. She’s interested in joining the organization.” Evonna nodded to Pascal.

 

She wondered what Pascal was going to say. They didn’t already have too many members, did they? Evonna hoped not. She liked this girl and wanted to see more of her, without having to deal with the hassle of interdimensional travel. This girl seemed to be a cool cat though, Chikako smiled and waved.

 

“Hi. Chikako Tanimoto, from the Village Hidden in the Leaves. What about you guys? Where are you from? What are your names?” She seemed to be very interested in all of these new people. Chikako was the very extrovert that Evonna was not. Maybe that’s why Ev liked her already. She just had that…. warm, friendly aura. Maybe it was her curiosity that caught Evonna’s attention. She wasn’t a hundred percent sure what exactly it was about this girl, but Evonna really, really liked her. Part of her hoped Chikako likes girls, but she knew that from her world those chances were probably slim. She really hoped so, though.

 

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Natsuki [ Marketplace Jail Cell ; please believe me ] 

 

Xander!


Natsuki felt a pang of worry mixed with their relief. Xander was the reinforcement that they had hoped for, but at the same time they worried about his safety. His armor didn’t make him invincible, and he was charging into a ruined pile of rubble and dust. A single misstep in the low visibility could mean a twisted ankle, and then he’d be vulnerable to the dragon. 

 

Not as though there were many other options. The dragon had to be contained, and the ruined cell was as good of a place as any. 

 

“I’m fine,” they said quickly, barely able to spare Xander a glance between looking at the ground, back to the dragon, and scanning the rest of their surroundings. They blinked, and when they opened their eyes the nictitating membranes were hidden again. The improved clarity of their surroundings helped, but they were mostly concerned with not worrying Xander. In the moment, they couldn’t remember whether he’d seen the cloudy membranes before. 

 

Xander’s approach had forced them to stop their retreat, and they used the moment to straighten themself. Legs apart, feet steady on stable pieces of rubble, bruised muscles tensed and poised to prepare them to move in any direction. They picked out pathways through the rubble, eyes flickering between potential footholds. It wasn’t perfect, but when they next moved it wouldn’t be with the disoriented stumbling they’d used before. 

 

Xander pulled them towards himself, and in the expectation of unseen danger they let themself fall limp towards him, a foot striking back against the ground to stop them from falling over completely. Nothing whizzed past them or otherwise showed that their previous location was more dangerous than the one that Xander had pulled them towards. Confusion swiftly changed to annoyance as they realized that Xander’s movement had been more of a gentle tug than a yank, not meant to drag them out of immediate danger. 

 

Why hadn’t Xander left them yet? They would be safer if he left them to flee on their own, and as much as letting others fight while they escaped bothered them they knew they’d only get in the way if they stayed. 

 

"Do you need to leave? I... do not think…”

 

Damn it. 

 

They stepped back and away from Xander, putting some distance between them, and straightened their spine, focusing more on appearances than the stability of their stance. A point on their shin burned from the strain, but they ignored it. They moved their uninjured arm away from their injury and let it to hang down by their side, joints loose, trying to make the movement look natural rather than forced. The slight tension around their mouth and eyes told them that they hadn’t entirely succeeded, but they hoped that Xander would get the message. 

 

“...but I have no issue with taking you to safety-”

 

“I’m fine, they insisted. “Go help Reshiram.” It felt wrong to give an order to a king of all people and a pit of dread settled in their stomach, but they couldn’t let Xander keep wasting time for them. The creeping feeling that they were being coddled was almost worse than the fear of going against the chain of command. At least when Xander had bought them food it’d been outside of battle. Didn’t Xander trust them to do their part? Had they portrayed such weakness that he didn’t believe in their ability to do something so simple as get out of danger? Xander had his own duties, and the idea that they couldn’t be relied on to do their part, that they were a burden, twisted like a parasite in their gut. 

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(Ther- ouch! - Bowser)

 

The push on Bowser's shell tilted him. He scrabbled, trying to get purchase on the ground and tilting farther forward. One of his feet managed to get purchase. He grunted and kicked out, managing with thehelp of whatever was pushing him to finally get to his feet. The adrenaline faded, and a dull pain pervaded his body. Bowser growled softly and looked around, catching sight of the ice dragon horror taking a few hits. Good. He rhen spotted two of the pink-skinned elves from earlier. The first time.....

 

Unconsciously, Bowser gritted his teeth. The pain was definitely getting worse. He tensed up, holding still for a few instants, before turning to face the dragon slowly. His body still hurt - from both of the beatdowns. Bowser growled. This was too important. His opponent was likely an eldritch horror! The koopa breathed a quick burst of flame. He then grimaced again, his tail curling in a bit. Bowser stifled a whimper of pain - he was a king. And he was proud and strong.

 

(Enough. - White Kyurem)

 

Blades of light. These people really liked blades. And light. Kyurem screamed. The blades stabbed, hurt, stabbed. More ice magic leaked from Kyurem's wounds.

 

Pain atop the pain of everlasting hunger and incompletion. How... amusing. But they didn't have time to muse. They were fighting - and then a burst of yelling. Kyurem turned to see a familiar group of creatures.

 

...heh, perfect. They'll not separate me. Kyurem was used to pain. It was constant. Not a constant they enjoyed or wanted to prolong - in fact, they sought to end it - but a constant all the same. Despite the leaking ice magic, Kyurem shifted their body forward and shrouded themself in icy mist. A claw extended towards the group. It shook slightly, before steadying. Kyurem's lips curled, and they swiftly directed the icy mist into a wind that burned even as it froze. The magic - the wind - surged towards the group of opponents and away from Kyurem, who involuntarily listed back before unsteadily stepping back. Kyurem lowered themself and brought their wing-arms to their chest, hissing. They wouldn't be beat here. Not when they were getting closer. So much closer.

 

To feeling. To being free. To no longer feeling constant pain.

 

To being whole again.

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Xander | Marketplace Jail

 

“I’m fine.”

Natsuki placed their palm firmly against Xander’s chest plate as they pushed themself away from him. Xander’s voice trailed off into a soft mumble. The distance between him and Natsuki felt palpable as Natsuki deliberately turned away from him before suggesting he help Reshiram instead. Were it not for a lifetime of court teaching him how to keep an impassive expression even in the most trying of times Xander doubted he would be able to suppress the unpleasant squeezing in his chest. Back home, Xander always found time to check up with his siblings and retainers during battle to, at the very least, assure that they didn’t need to be taken out of the fight for medical treatment. Xander had assumed that he and Natsuki would close enough for him to give them the same treatment but, he realized with a frown, it seemed as though he had wildly miscalculated the depth of their relationship.

 

With a quick, acknowledging nod, Xander turned away from Natsuki to assess the situation. The dragon reared its head back, a horrid screech filling the air as Raine’s spears of light pierced the dragon’s skin. Xander allowed himself a brief moment to glower at the disgusting dragon before looking over in the direction of where the spears had appeared from. As far as he was concerned, Raine was the only healer around and while she was perfectly capable of fighting back she wasn’t exactly the best when it came to taking attacks. If her barriers failed her once and she ended up taking the full force of an attack then…

 

It was not a hypothetical worth exploring on the battlefield especially when Xander knew first hand what happened when healers were not protected. As a chilling mist materialized, obscuring the dragon from view, Xander began racing across the broken concrete floor jumping over crevices in the earth as he made his way towards where Raine stood. The magic that swirled around her body began to dissipate as Xander neared. As he opened his mouth to call out to her, he felt a gust of wind pick up behind him. Xander spun around, Siegfried quickly unsheathed in anticipation of an enemy. The wind grew harsher, the biting cold brushing against the bare skin on Xander’s face. The king’s eyes widened as he saw the silhouette of a pointed draconic claw within the mist. Just as the wind grew horribly colder, Xander forced himself in front of Raine and raised his arm, calling forth a wall of rock to burst out of the earth right in front of him. Xander grit his teeth, falling down to one knee as his body began to shiver uncontrollably. Flecks of ice were forming on his armor. The exposed fabric from his undershirt was torn open, exposing his flesh that had grown red from the wind. It had felt like someone had taken a whip to his exposed skin and Xander, unable to do much more, pressed himself against the rock as the wind blew past.

 

Dimly, Xander became aware that the pain began to slowly vanish. Glancing back, Xander spotted Raine summoning a warm light to appear over the worst of Xander’s injuries and slowly mend them.

“Thank you for the help,” Xander said as the pain ebbed away. The wind began to die down as Raine healed the worst of Xander’s wounds. “I’m afraid you’ll probably need to do that a few more times once this battle is over,” Xander said. Looking back at the wall, Xander gently brushed Raine off. “You might want to take a step back. I don’t want you accidentally getting hit.” Without a beat of hesitation, Xander slammed his fist into the ground. The wall in front of him quickly slid back down into the earth. Pushing himself upward, Xander grabbed Siegfried’s hilt with both of his hands as he raised it to his face. A low hum emitted from the sword as sparks of red electricity began to bounce off the blade’s surface. The electricity quickly grew in intensity, lighting up Xander in a dark purple glow. Clenching the hilt with all his might, Xander raised the blade upward, sending a bolt of electricity spiraling upward in the air. The electricity shot through the sky, racing straight towards the dragon at an alarming speed.

Edited by Doctortear

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[ A biting frozen wind... - Illidan ]

 

Illidan was snapped out of his musings by a sudden chill in the air - and this time, the Demon Hunter couldn't simply ignore it. He was about to move to attack the dragon beast...

 

But then it became unbearably cold. So much so that his muscles felt stiff, his skin felt sore, and he began to shiver. There were times when being a Demon Hunter sucked and this was one of them.

 

He still had to get that attack out, he still had to get a strike in... but the shivering paired with his stiffened muscles made his Eye Beam completely miss the dragon.

 

GODDESS. DAMMIT.

 

He was almost certain he had frostbite now. He hadn't even noticed Xander's terraformed stone shield this time around and was certain that it'd take more than a simple healer's work to warm himself back up again.

 

~~

 

[ Dammit Noreillan. - Oblivionix and Noreillan ]

 

"Do we have to teach this thing another lesson?" Oblivionix sighed. "Just don't know when to quit, does it?"

 

"I'm down for another round..." Noreillan began priming his magic when he felt Oblivionix smack him in the arm.

 

"Oh no ya ain't! That thing's got ice all over it! Your magic ain't gonna do squat against that!" Oblivionix then took aim at the dragon-beast with her rifle...

 

Then Noreillan smacked her back in her arm, throwing off her aim and causing her bullet to miss.

 

"NOREILLAN, WHAT THE HELL?!"

 

"Oops. Sorry - I wasn't aware that'd make your bullets just as ineffective," he snapped back with a smug, sarcastic tone.

 

Oblivionix glared. "Jerk."

 

Noreillan glared back. "Brat."

 

Ah, sibling rivalry.

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15173d25115509cd0948ab8434aba27b.png [ vincent ; -- add. echo ; -- for. s & p ]

-- status.

dormouse ; wound

demios ; dormant }

for you, the abyss.

--

 

When Pascal hands the pouch back to her, having counted out a sufficient amount of coins, Echo hugs the coinpurse close to her chest and nods her thanks. She stares in surprise, eyes faintly widening as Pascal announces her declaration to the two girls who had just walked into the stall -- friends, perhaps? -- and is just about to voice whether or not that would be wise when she remembers that she is here to guard Master Vincent and not to chat. 

 

With a doubtful glance in the red and white haired girl's direction, wondering if perhaps she is only exaggerating -- for the sake of her stomach, Echo hopes so -- she moves to stand between Vincent's chair and the outside, keeping an eye on their numerous shopping bags as she does so.

 

Vincent, for his part, snickers as he watches the brown-haired boy stumble, looking greatly agitated as he collects himself to the best of his ability only to be stunned once more by his friend's declaration. How undignified. His Elliot would never act in such a way -- but Ellie was made of a better material than this boy, anyways. 

 

He turns his attention away from the small group that has gathered, finding them too noisy -- and young. If Vincent has any experience with teenagers, it is that they are noisy, brutish, and entirely not worthy of his time -- which is why it drives him insane to think that his Elliot actually finds good company with those around his age. 

 

He settles for watching the chef make their ordered meals, completely unfazed by the large order as her limbs work every which way to create what seemed like round pieces of bread. Well, it certainly wasn't his preferred choice of foods, but he's not picky. Lord knows he has spent enough time scrounging for food during assignments from Pandora -- 

 

Wait. 

 

He picks on something certainly interesting, and Vincent turns on the gathered group with an interested smile that doesn't quite reach his eyes.

 

"Echo," he says, and the servant girl leans in close. "Guard the door."

 

She moves to stand by the door, certainly not outwardly posing a threat, but Vincent knows that any order handed down from him she would carry through. 

 

"The organization," he says, breaking into the conversation without giving anyone a chance to respond after the black-haired ... ninja? Doubtful, Vincent analyses, as he scans over her clothing and raises an eyebrow at the amount of fishnet he sees. "What could a group of misfits like you be up to?" 

 

New organizations cropping up is ... mysterious. He is not one to trust easily, nor he is he one to consider the repercussions of his actions onto others, but Pandora's hegemony cannot be interrupted -- not as so long there remains parts of the Abyss to be conquered. Vincent likes to think himself quite knowledgeable of the bazaar and its patrons, simply due to the sheer amount of time he spends here shopping and trapping tourists in small food stalls, as you do. Perhaps he had initially underestimated the group of children he sees before him now. 

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