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Gwion's bear of a smile was something he'd been missing for quite a while, he found himself returning it.
"Vacation of sorts, probably earned after that slammer of a day. Missed the snow, also prescribed by my PT, well, maybe not prescribed. Guy started rattling off treatments for my shoulder and suggested I go skiing again, at least when I made it perfectly clear that if he made me play with clay I was going to fire it and jam it up his ass." he chortled at the memory.
"Though I do have to admit, I didn't think you a snow guy."
""These two cackling chooks are Teri and Kris. I'm usually just called Wolfe." She smiled and let out a laugh. Ohh this is going to get confusing. She inclined her head in turn at the other two. "I am Katya" Twenty years ago? "This friend, part of the Bolshevik Revolution?" she asked quizzically.
edited 9th Apr '15 3:34:44 AM by Slysheen
Gwion nodded to Ulf. "I'd say you bloody earned it. I'm here chasing a rest myself after my last holiday turned out to be not quite as relaxing as I had hoped."
He waved his biological hand to indicate the bar at large. "I'm not particularly a 'snow person' but I heard this place was devoid of the - ahh - entertainments of Capital City and I figured I'd be down with a bit of this après-ski stuff. Though I was thinking of it being avant-ski and en lieu de-ski as well."
His voice took on a more serious and concerned tone. "So how's that shoulder of yours bearing up, anyway?"
"Ah, no," he said, still smiling. "When I left Earth a little over eight months ago, the year was 2014, so I'm talking about the mid nineteen-nineties." Post-Glasnost, but I don't think I should mention that as obviously it's part of her future.
"We all come from different times," Teri volunteered. "We've even got friends from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries."
"And I'm from even further in the future than Wolfe," said Kris, mindful of the contrast of her pale left and tanned right hand.
edited 9th Apr '15 4:55:37 AM by Wolf1066
[Lounge/Bar] "Bus"? Did I miss something?
Virgil blinked in surprise. So much of his life these days was like a dream: It made perfect sense at the time, but in retrospect there was just so much—strangeness.
Zak was right, of course. Virgil was a high-ranking Usean military official, practically a celebrity for his astonishingly successful campaign against the paramilitary wing of General Resource Limited, so of course he would be a high-value target for enemies of the state. It wouldn't be difficult for an enterprising enemy to buy him a plane ticket to anywhere in the world, fabricate an advertisement for a mountain resort, and approach him in the terminal.
And yet... was he a Usean Air Force pilot? He'd fought for UPEO against GR, and before that, for Osea against Yuktobania and Belka, and before that, for ISAF against Erusea, and before that, for Ustio—and the entire civilized world—against Belka, but he couldn't seem to remember how or why he'd changed sides so often. Perhaps he was a mercenary. If his memories, hazy and spotty though they may be, were accurate, he'd been a pilot—an ace pilot—for almost fifty years. But that... couldn't be accurate.
He could feel the beginning of a tremor in his hands; carefully he set the glass down and chuckled.
"You know, I think I'm going crazy," he said calmly. "Why else would I have gotten on that plane? You have the right of it, of course. I'm probably worth a lot to Usea's enemies. But I made it here safely, and it doesn't seem like anyone's trying to kill or kidnap me. Might be a case of chalking it up to lessons learned."
edited 9th Apr '15 9:00:06 AM by SolipSchism
Isaac shrugged and said, "meh, maybe." He took a long sip of his soda. "Ain't got anything better to do. I mean..." he shrugged. "I can't ski for shit. Don't see why I'd hurl myself down a mountain on a piece of inflated rubber. Don't do alcohol." He looked at the portal. "Think I saw some folks my friend Alice told me to stay away from heading down that way." He glanced at the game room. "That's seeming like an option, kinda," he turned to Camille, "if you've got any ideas." A long drink of his soda. "I'm supposed to be workin' on talkin' to people, but light conversation's hard. I mean, you got any interest in astrobiology?" He clearly expected a no.
He took one last look around, suddenly noticing Amanda. "Dead gods," he muttered as he noticed her prominently displayed forearm scars. The implications were... disconcerting, to say the least. He was normally a man to mind his own business, and perhaps it was a mere record of a past long since transcended. Still... a worried frown crossed his face. Maybe, if he thought of something, he'd say something.
[Arcade of Time]
A strange, playful glitter came to Qal's eyes. "Well, it's actually a funny story..."
"Dear," Izeri said, "is this going to be like that time you tried to wrangle me into helping you pretend to be the Avatar?"
Qal practically choked, then said, "oh, come on, do you have to tell everybody about that?! I mean, just that one..."
"Should I just get us separate rooms checked out now?"
Qal sighed, whatever mischievous scheme she had cut short. Maybe it was for the best. Then she said, "yeah. Water for me, and — in case it wasn't obvious — fire for her." She looked around the arcade. "Not in the mood to give demonstrations, mind," she said, returning to her game. Mostly because, loathe as she was to admit it, she wasn't particularly good at it. Oh, sure, she was great with some things — phase transitions, fine work, she'd even figured out how to pick simple locks with water. But her general rule of fighting was "sneak up behind them with something heavy".
edited 10th Apr '15 12:27:49 PM by KillerClowns
"Hi," Maroko said, slightly less than enthusiastically. I'm barely part of this conversation, she thought, of course, I can't blame them - friends and all.
However, overhearing Isaac talking to Camille, she turned around on her seat, and said to him, "what kind of astrobiology are you talking about? Aliens? Alternate universes? Aliens from alternate universes?" I really don't know if I want to ask him about that 'Dead Gods' statement, though, she thought.
Maroko also has a hard time making small talk. :P
"Wow! Cool!" Nanami said, sounding very exited, "but yeah, here's probably no good, we wouldn't want to set off the fire alarms or short out any machines... but you two should totally give me a demonstration later! Please!"
"And then maybe we could try out for a Pro-Bending team! I wonder if they have a practice arena here," she said, "wait - I probably shouldn't get ahead of myself. Normally by now Maroko would have told me to knock it off..."
"So, uh, I think I forgot to introduce myself," she said, now looking more embarrassed than anything else, "I'm Nanami, and... it's fine if you just want to play on the machines. Sorry, I tend to get overly exited about these things..."
edited 10th Apr '15 7:37:05 PM by Sonzai
Kyle noticed Virgil's hand starting to shake, but he said nothing. This man was not completely composed, as he seemed prone to either nervousness or something else. Kyle couldn't pinpoint it.
Zak thought on the pilot's words. Just a minute ago, he said that what happened to him wasn't nearly as dramatic as implied by his mannerisms. But now he just admitted that he might be starting to lose it. What did happen to him?
Zak thought it might be best to change the subject. "Um... Well, we come from Sergeant. It's in Delaware..." For a moment, he grappled for something to continue with.
"W-we're in middle school." Almost instantly, Zak winced a little inside, realizing just how painfully obvious that statement was, considering his age.
Rick looked at Ulf and gave a single chuckle. "Some of the Capital crowd, I see." He extended his hand, "You might've already heard my name, but in case you didn't, it's Rick Flier."
[ARCADE OF TIME]
Lara paused the game to listen to the two foreign-looking women next to her. Did they mention fire? As in, control it?
She sighed, shook her head and went back to her game. This was the second time in a row that she met a stranger who also had control of fire purely by accident.
edited 11th Apr '15 5:26:59 PM by TroPartner
Tali looked around in amazement at all the equipment the Resort had. "Wow, grammy wasn't joking when she said this resort has everything anyone could possibly need." she said with awe. She continued to follow the woman, taking mental notes of everything around her. "Where to next?" she asked with excitement.
"...I don't even know what that is, exactly," Camille said when Isaac mentioned "astrobiology" with a frown.
She shook her head. "Anyway, I was just going to explore this place some more. I wasn't planning on going outside unless they have complimentary winter boots here or something, though." She glanced down at one of her bare feet. "I haven't seen very much of this place so far. I just stopped here and talked to you since it looked like there were a lot of people here and I didn't know when I'd get the chance to socialize again if I didn't. My life normally is kind of lonely and it'd suck if my stay here wound up being like that."
She then briefly glanced back in the direction of the lobby. "Come to think of it, I don't think I've even gotten a room yet...."
At that point, the purple-haired girl decided to join in. Unfortunately, she seemed much more interested in talking to Isaac rather than Camille, and by the looks of things they were going to talk about this "astrobiology" stuff. In other words, it wasn't looking like Camille was going to get the chance to contribute much to this. Well, so much for talking to this girl sooner rather than later. Heck, now she wasn't even sure if they would have anything in common at all.
She sighed before finishing her earlier statement. "...And now's looking like a good time to go and take care of that."
edited 10th Apr '15 12:30:36 PM by Yomegami
Gwion indicated the tarp and Spectra and said to Ulf, "Rick's an acquaintance of Joshua and kindly returned my stuff."
To Rick he said, "next time you see Joshua, tell him that I'm glad that Felix the Twat is as good a shot as he is a judge of character. I'm sure he'll know what I mean."
He scooped up the tarp and cordage and slipped them into one of his vest pockets and, his gin and lemonade finished, picked up the Lemon, Lime and Bitters that Mark had provided.
Although the Angostura Bitters had a high alcohol content, the copious amounts of lemonade and lime cordial compared with the small dash of Bitters rendered the drink practically non-alcoholic.
Ulf shrugged, flinching at the flash of pain from the unconscious gesture.
"Can't say it's any worse than the Winter War, that jackass managed to get me at just the right time. Lycanthrope skin is bullet resistant against low caliber shots but that one splintered instead of bruised."
"Skin, muscle, and bone are pretty easy to mend, neural and vascular structures, not so much. Little bit of feeling loss and some pain, but almost full functionality. As I said, same shit I dealt with years ago, just slower. Gettin old I guess."
"Rick's an acquaintance of Joshua and kindly returned my stuff."
"Biker guy? Wonder how he's doing." Though he couldn't help but laugh at the mention of "Felix-the-Twat.
He took up a seat, cracked his arms, giving the uncooperative shoulder a notice to go fall in a hole, and faced the yeti.
"Hm, let's have a little drip of vodka, wouldn't happen to have Kiteen Kirkas I'd imagine." he chuckled to himself.
2014 her mind boggled, it seemed so far away.
"I imagined that other times intersected, I suppose it explains the strange things I've seen in the Capital City. 1944, 1944 is where I came from." she resisted the urge to ask what would become of her homeland as the world they knew was not likely hers.
edited 10th Apr '15 4:49:22 PM by Slysheen
"And it wasn't just one of those 7.62 by 51 NATO rounds, either." Gwion had fired a Mosin-Nagant rifle once and was well aware of the power of the 7.62x54R cartridge it fired. "I'm glad to see you're on the mend and that you've still got your arm - you don't want to wind up looking like me."
"One of our friends came from 1940," said Teri. "He was glad to get away from that time and the war."
"Although we are all originally from Earth - or a version of Earth, anyway - we haven't been there for some time," said Kris. "Eight months or so, as Wolfe said, from our own perspectives but possibly longer for some of us, depending on what the date really is back on Earth."
[Ski Rental Building >> Basement]
"That was the plan!" Takumi said, smiling, "next, let's check out the rest of the resort's main building."
She opened the warp door on this building, which led to the Basement floor of the Resort. "So here, we have the ice hockey rink, movie theater, and fantasy rooms."
She opened another door on the side, where inside a large, empty ice hockey rink could be seen. Another door a short distance down opened to a movie theater snack bar, with doors to the screening room on either side. A hallway perpendicular to this one had four doors, two on each side, and opening the left one, a large empty white room could be seen.
"The other two are pretty obvious, but these fantasy rooms are completely configurable," she said, "so one can say, I want this to be a tropical rainforest." The room suddenly changed in the blink of an eye into the appearance of a lush rainforest, birds and other sounds could be heard from the sunlit canopy above. Even the atmosphere was now warm and humid, despite the outside weather. "Pretty cool, right?"
Rick looked confused at what Gwion said. Felix-the-Twat? Was that someone from Capital?
At first, Rick looked like he was about to dismiss it, but then he turned his eyes back on the red-eyed man.
"Uh... Felix? Did someone take a shot at Joshua?"
edited 11th Apr '15 3:27:55 PM by TroPartner
Gwion nodded. "I didn't see it but, according to an eye witness account, two shots - a self-professed 'hero' with a history of not being able to distinguish the good guys and innocent victims from the bad guys. Thankfully, it turned out he couldn't hit the broad side of a barn... from inside the barn."
Suddenly he realised why a woman he had seen earlier had seemed familiar - it was the woman on the bus who spoken to him when he had called out Felix for blaming Miyuki for the fracas in Zan's Diner. His presence in the doorway had prevented the automated transport from closing the doors and departing and she had been - quite rightfully, it must be admitted - annoyed by the delay. Will I ever get used to these multidimensional coincidences? At some stage, he'd have to apologise to her.
edited 11th Apr '15 5:10:53 PM by Wolf1066
Rick was unsure about the tone of voice in which Gwion said 'Hero'. After all, Joshua or rather, Blindman, was also widely regarded as a hero, so someone taking somewhat of a cynical view of standing up for doing the right thing wasn't exactly his cup of tea. He couldn't even stand regular tea.
However, he kept this to himself. Unlike Lara, Rick was a little more careful in choosing his words. After all, there are many good qualities in most people. Gwion's joke about the barn proved this theory, as it got a good laugh out of Rick.
"That's one I haven't heard before." He admitted with a wide grin, "But...maybe it wouldn't hurt to hear the rest of the..."
His voice trailed off, realizing that he lost track of Lara in his delight at returning the tarp. Rick looked over one shoulder, and then the other. Finally, he looked at Gwion, scratching the back of his ear.
"Hey, I know you probably can't answer this, but have you seen a girl with black hair and a red jacket...?"
"I did see a woman answering that description earlier but I didn't see where she went as I was busy talking. She was heading in vaguely that direction," he pointed in the general direction of the blue portal, "the last I saw her. I only just remembered where I had seen her before - she was on the bus in Capital City just after..." Gwion shook his head.
He took a puff of his cigarette and exhaled slowly, marshalling his thoughts. "OK. It's weird, but here goes. Not long after I met Joshua and Ulf, here, at Zan's Diner and loaned Joshua that tarp, there was an altercation involving a red-haired woman carelessly fireballing someone else's pizza - a crime in any universe - and nearly starting a brawl.
"After everything had calmed down, Felix hooked up with the red-head that had started the fracas and put the blame for the disturbance on the woman whose pizza had been incinerated. He told her he was a 'hero' - honestly, who calls themselves a hero? It's a term of respect bestowed by others due to one's noteworthy and selfless actions, not a fucking job title.
"Anyway, he and the red-head, who apparently wanted to be some sort of self-described 'superhero', hopped on a bus as if they had just saved the world, so I went and had a bit of a word with them - well, with Felix, mainly - and that woman you asked about was on the bus - and rather pissed off that I was holding them up, as I recall.
"Later, that self-same Felix 'heroically' decided that Joshua was a baddie and shot at him. Surprisingly, the red-head apparently had more of a clue than Felix and actually went after the real villain. There may be hope for her yet."
Gwion took a sip of his drink. "And now here I am in a completely different universe having a drink with Ulf and someone who knows both Joshua and the woman on the bus."
edited 11th Apr '15 8:42:10 PM by Wolf1066
"Well," Rick chuckled, "I should hope I know her. She's...my daughter."
The large man shrugged, taking a seat at the empty table nearest to Gwion. "And before you ask, yes, I did know she was walking around Capital."
Isaac gave Camille a polite nod, then let her go. Then he responded to Maroko. "Same dimension," he said, "and it's actually Earth-descended, with some... artificial prodding by what was left of the Song, I'm told. Basically means it's all biochemically compatible; you can spear an Alosian fish, cook it, and eat it, and you'll probably be good. Some of it, like the native human population, only got ten thousand years difference. Shit, ten thousand years to adapt to a hotter world meant I could even splice some genes in with Earth crops..." he tone grew dour as he continued, "and we kinda have to, these days." A brief, faraway look, then he shook his head. "Nevermind that, though."
He looked over at Camille. "I'm probably boring the fuck outta you, though." Then back at Maroko. "And I don't think I even got your name yet."
Qal returned to her game with a nod, while Izeri looked over and noticed Lana again. "Hey," she said, "you look like you had something to say?" If so, she hadn't had a chance to get in a word edgewise with Nanami's enthusiasm.
edited 13th Apr '15 6:14:31 AM by KillerClowns
Tali followed the woman throughout the building, gazing in awe at just about everything they came across. But what really got her to gasp and her eyes to sparkle was the fantasy room. Listening to Takumi's explanation of the room she watched as it changed from a blank room into a tropical rainforest in a matter of seconds. She thought she even saw a green parrot fly over her head as she looked to her guide with glee. "This is amazing!" she declared, flying around a bit to get a better look at things before returning to her guide. "What's next?" she asked with a much excited look.
Lobby - Bar
"Now where did she go?" said a sudden melodic voice from the portal leading into the lobby of the Resort as a young woman came in carrying two suitcases. She had long light pink hair and bright blue eyes and was wearing a pale blue long dress that flowed around her knees and a matching light jacket over it. In her hair she wore fake blue carnation flowers, one on each side of her head. She didn't look dressed for the cold weather at all because even her shoes were simple blue slip-ons.
The woman looked around confused but immediately forgot about it when a man greeted her with a bow and gestured towards the maps and brochures. She picked up a map and stuffed it in her jacket pockets before continuing to wheel around her rather large suitcases. She decided to stop a moment at the bar as she felt quite thirsty and carefully sat her suitcases next to her seat. The pinkette sat in a elegant manner, like she was at a fancy restaurant than a bar, and even unfolded a napkin on her lap. To the bartender who she didn't even blink an eye on the fact he was a yeti, she asked in a polite tone, "Excuse me, may I have some tea please? The journey here was a bit rough." She was smiling pleasantly the whole time, despite the back of her mind wondering where a certain someone was.
Laying now on the lawn chairs outside the hot springs was Xia who was taking a small nap when she suddenly stirred awake. Laying there a moment she pulled down her sunglasses and wondered out loud, "I wonder if sweet little Ai found her way here yet." Her tone at Ai's description was full of mockery and distaste as she turned over and went back to sleep.
edited 15th Apr '15 7:46:22 AM by Sphinxyness
Virgil thought about that for a second. If Delaware was a country, he'd have recognized the name; he was hardly a geography buff, but he'd been around the world a few times and Delaware wasn't any country he'd ever heard of. He supposed it could be a federated state, but Zak had already mentioned the 'United States', which would be a hell of an odd name for a federated state, and 'America', and neither of those were familiar either.
It seemed safe to assume this wasn't Strangereal. Or at least, these kids weren't from Strangereal.
"Don't look so embarassed," he said. "I was in middle school once, you know. In..." he trailed off, frowning. "Directus, the Ustian capital, back in the 80s." That was a guess. His earliest memories, hazy at best, were of basic combat training in Ustio before the war in 1995. He supposed he must have been born and raised in Directus.
He shrugged. "I don't suppose it matters where anyone's from, really. This seems like a pretty relaxed place."
edited 13th Apr '15 9:19:03 AM by SolipSchism
Zak raised his hands in an apologetic fashion.
"Oh, uh, no, that's not why I'm upset... I just realized how obvious it was. We're both thirteen, after all." As he finished, he gestured to Kyle, who had by now gotten to the last drops of his orange juice, and was now raising his glass straight up to the sky to get the most out of it.
"Hm?" Lara asked, taking a moment to realize what Qal was asking. It only took a moment. "Oh," she said with a shrug, "nothing really. It's just that this is the second 'vacation'" Lara formed air quotes with her fingers, "where I run into someone with the exact same powers as mine.... Well, sort of."
edited 13th Apr '15 11:45:41 AM by TroPartner
"Oh!" Virgil laughed. "Well, I didn't want to make any assumptions. One of my wingmen during the last campaign I fought in was a nine-year-old girl. For all I knew, you could be the President of this 'Delaware' place."
He looked down at his drink, seemed to be thinking hard about something.
"I wonder if they rent out snowboards for free too," he mused. "I've always wanted to give that a try."
You'll never be better than Commander Felix!
Felix, as usual, did not look like a Commander of anything. He looked to be in his mid-twenties, was rather tall, had glasses and a small afro, and wore a light green jacket with the buttons undone, revealing a black sweater underneath. He had his usual chill-but-tired expression on his face.
Rose followed him. She looked like your average teenage girl, with short black hair and blue eyes. She wore a black parka, with the hood up. She was looking at the room in awe.
After a moment, she looked up at Felix. "When are Ashley and Arthur coming?"
"Soon enough." Felix clapped his hands together. "Okay, this works. Let's try to find a map..."
He pointed at Teri, Kris and Wolfe seated further away down the bar. "See that group over there talking to the tall Russian woman? They were also in the Capital recently. The woman with the eighties hairstyle has the same surname as me and bought a nearly identical motorbike to the one I bought - from the same shop, no less - and the other two are also Kiwis, like me. According to Maroko, this is perfectly normal around here. The way things are going, the Russian's probably, I dunno, Felix's arch-nemesis or something."
edited 13th Apr '15 1:37:50 PM by Wolf1066
David sat back at his table, sipping on some alcoholic drink that he wasn't sure was made of. It was somewhat good, but he could tell it had some bourbon in it, which burned his throat.
Mariana seemed to take her time, which bored him enough to drink most of the drink. But it was mildly interesting listening in on other conversations. The blond man focused in a black man talking about "astrobiology" or something to a barefoot young woman who appeared utterly confused, while another female was intrigued. It was amusing, if anything. The man had built a curious interest in her, but felt he couldn't just jump into their conversation (unlike the other girl).
But the young woman was so uninterested, she made a comment on leaving.
David also wanted a good reason to check on Mariana, and this seemed like a good excuse to head to the lobby.
Yomegami, assume when Camille leaves or whatever, David has approached her.
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