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The grasping hands of dozens served to wipe away blood, leaving behind dirt, grime, other people's blood, and a thin veneer of butter from the man who apparently ate raw butter.
He stood off to the side, licking his fingers without much concern for the events transpiring around him. Kaguya gave him wide berth, placing the sea of weirdoes between her and more butter.
Such a crush of people was rare for a sequestered girl like her. She could've ducked and weaved as gracefully as the situation allowed, but her physical contact with peasants today had left her very satisfied, thank you very much.
Kaguya actually left the interior of the Egress, to look down on the world below. Chances are, unless they packed themselves on top of each other there wouldn't be a chance for anyone else to clamber on board...
Oh, hey, wonder what she's doing to distract Kaguya from that idea. She floated above Makoto, who was deeply engrossed in the sights this kaleidoscope could show her. "Tell me, friend, what exactly is so important over there?"
Edited by wikkit on May 12th 2019 at 4:20:36 AM
Charvaka, the Grand Delusion
Charvaka nudged his way through the crowds as the building came down behind him, delighting in grasping hands and rank desperation, and carved a path with gentle sweeps of his cane and soft convulsions of the world. He homed in on a cluster of dense-packed earth, rife with impurity and pierced through with inappropriate chakra - Girimehkala had made no conscious report, but understood well enough the terms of his enslavement. Independent interest had been revoked from him entirely, and his affections were utterly forfeit.
He found it wearing an approximation of human shape, an intricate facsimile unburdened by understanding, too fascinated by the stolen weapon in its hands to notice him. He'd taken it for a golem, at first, some incestuous man-shape let loose for war and pleasure, but in time and observation had come to realise no conscious hand had shaped it. It didn't even know itself. The trappings of his slave's affection were barely worth considering, but that had demanded his attention.
"Andratite, yes?" he said, laying a finger gently upon its shoulder. It had been one piece, once, but he could feel the fault-lines of damage and impurities of repair spreading out like a web below the surface. "My name is Charvaka, and I am master of the impetuous elephant who called you friend. Please, come with me."
The world spasmed, and they appeared by the bar of the Egress Eternal.
"We have much to discuss."
Edited by OG-Sama on May 12th 2019 at 4:20:49 AM
Andradite - from alley to galley
"Yeah okay, in a second!"
Sadly, the big impressive gun only seemed to have one shot loaded in it - she couldn't see any more inside when she looked in from the front, and the trigger didn't work anymore. Letting out a disappointed sigh, she had just tossed it down on top of the pile that had formed around her feet when she felt a tap on her shoulder.
"Mhmm! That's me." She turned to look at the man with the cane, cocking her head slightly as she thought back. Giri's master...
"Oh, you're Fuckface!" She concluded with a smile and a ringing finger-snap. "Giri told me about you! What-"
And now she was back in the bar, although it had changed a bit since Rufus had turned it back into a spaceship. Whatever Charvaka had done, it had saved her the trouble of trying to get to safety while holding her arm in place, so she took it in stride.
"Thanks, Charvi! I need to talk to my boss first, though. Rufus!" She turned to look around for the minotaur, worry etched on her 3/4ths of a face. "I'm sorry I forgot your towels!"
Death To Location Tags!
Magicaloid pulled away the spyglass quite a bit faster this time, not wanting to dwell on the sight of Dive’s innards long enough to possibly drop out of the sky. She did list a tad, however, and her attempt to correct herself lead to her jostling straight into the lunar princess who had followed after her. “Sssorry, didn’t see you ttthere…” She slurred slightly, the sights fresh in her mind weighing just as heavy on her tongue. She clasped at Kaguya’s shoulder to support herself, reorienting midair and absent-mindedly pressing the still-clutched spyglass into Kaguya’s person. “I guess you were right after all, I really didn’t have the right stuff… to…” Magicaloid trailed off awkwardly as she realized what she’d just basically admitted, before rolling her synthetic eyes in resigned annoyance before turning to face Kaguya and making to press the spyglass more firmly into the other girl’s chest. “I’ll try and explain later,” she half-promised, angling her thrusters to send her drifting gently backwards and away, “but for the moment, just put that somewhere, don’t look through it, and hold on a sec until I get back. I think I might know how Artifacts Inc. was keeping an eye on this place.”
Unless she was interrupted, Magicaloid would turn and jet through the gaping hole in Maken’s roof, her slight frame passing easily through a hole meant for a flying elephant man. Landing on the now-familiar floor with a light cloud of disturbed dust and debris, she moved over to a set of equally-familiar shelves, tracing her finger along the questionably-free rows of items before alighting on a set of glowsticks. Snatching up a set of three of them, she moved over to where she’d last seen the orb, coincidentally not even all that far from where she’d been rummaging for towels just a short while ago. As expected, where the orb had been in the spyglass’s lens was just an empty, innocuous space; and even if it wasn’t, there was a beam strewn across the port of entry, that had no doubt fallen due to one of the countless horrible things that had happened in just the last hour or so. Setting two of the three glowsticks she’d picked up onto the floor beside her, she then took the remaining one and cracked it significantly harder than was recommended by the manufacturer, before then whipping the fluid forward with a sudden jerk of her wrist, flecking the glowing fluid across the rounded surface of the orb, rendering it ever-more visible with every swipe and swish. Eventually, she dropped the empty shell of the glowstick by her side, before lacing her fingers and stretching them out in front of her, feeling her robotic muscles revving up. “Alright Magicaloid, let’s earn some experience points…” Squatting down, she braced her hands along the edge of the beam’s nearest corner, and with a firm plant of her diminutive feet, began to lift it upward, feeling its length creak in protest while she hoisted it away from its new home. Once she got it to what she felt was a respectable height, she slipped in underneath, lifting it above her head with both arms—and then with just one, grunting and hissing as the weight bore down on the focal point of her tortured arm, before reaching out with the other to grasp at where she could see the orb outlined in glowstick innards. Tracing and tugging at the orb’s surface with just the tips of her fingers, she finally harnessed enough friction to roll it forward the tiniest amount, at which point she ungraciously batted it aside like a cat toy, caring for nothing so much as getting it clear and giving her poor, strained arm a break. Leaping free herself to let the beam fall with a mighty crash behind her, Magicaloid took a moment to compose herself, letting her overly-strained knuckles press down into the floor as she soothingly rested her weight onto them. She eventually pulled herself up, flapping her hands out at either side, as she approached the hard-won fruits of her labor, snatching up the other glowsticks in the process and clasping them over the prone orb, snapping them open as well to deposit their glowing green goo over the sphere’s surface. “I hope you guys know that you’ve caused us all a lot of problems.” She said, dropping those empty casings as well while she reached over her shoulder with her non-throbbing arm and into her pack, rummaging around, “But if anything that Maken thought about you was true, then I have to think that you’ll help us, at least as long as we have a common enemy.” Finding what she was looking for, she bunched it between mechanical fingers, then brought it out to bear—a piece of tarp, constituting a part of her materials that she would use to make shelter should she ever find herself tragically far from civilization. “But until then, I’ll just hold onto this.” With that, she would make to wrap the tarp around the glowing liquid-stained orb, before securing it shut with a series of bungee cords she also had in her pack. Hoisting the orb onto her shoulder by using said chords as a grip, Magicaloid set her sights on the hole in the roof above, and rocketed off, rejoining Kaguya in the skies of Dive. “It’s done,” she would say, nodding to Rufus’s establishment in the distance and rocketing towards is, as she secured her cargo to make sure it wouldn’t drop away, “let’s see if Rufus can make sense of all this.”
Edited by Uncandescent on May 13th 2019 at 6:37:10 AM
Old Maken's Shop Of Mysteries
There was no response from the orb at first. But as Makoto stood to leave, the chained eye clattered and shivered, and before she took the spyglass from her eye she might be able to swear that it had blinked.
The Egress Eternal; Officers' Mess
"No worries, Andy darling! This assistant girl here got them for me! She's… wait, where is she?"
The Forever and a Day, shaking with interdimensional energy, pulsed in a blinding flash of light - then the shimmering not-ship around it coalesced entirely, and it disappeared into the silver fuselage and battered lines of a converted space-time cruiser. The ruins of the Cabaret and the building behind them burst into plumes of dust and debris, destroyed by the sudden apparition of galaxy-grade spacesteel.
"Oh well, I'm sure she's alright. Eyes up, fellows! We only have one shot at this, so it's either a glorious escape or a glorious death! Quite possibly of old age in an eternal freefall, but you win some, you lose some, right? Let's go, Gressie old girl!"
As the Egress Eternal lifted, groaned, and lurched towards the Rift in a desperate, swerving run, the only sound apart from the roar of the engines and the whine of the walls was Rufus' booming laughter.
The tear in the world opened to receive them, opened to swallow the last dregs of Dive.
The purple skies vanished like so much sand, like a dream, replaced by a silence so sudden that it seemed like death.
Five Seconds Later
"Well, the navigation still works," said Rufus, popping up from behind the bar, "so I guess we made it. Great work, everyone!"
Begonia sniffled, sprawled in the corner of a corner like an abandoned cushion. Mama Jupiter, surrounded by her staff, took a hard hand off the sleeping Claudia's cheek, straightened up and turned to Rufus.
"This is a fine mess you've got us into, Rufus. Are you telling me that you had a ship all this time? Why didn't you get off Dive the moment you could?"
Her steely gaze would have been unbearable to any normal sentient, but normal Rufus was not.
"Well, you see, Darlene old girl…"
"Don't call me that."
"Mama," corrected Rufus generously, "I only had enough fuel to make a run of approximately this length. Certainly not enough to get off Mariana, and it's not like there's much of interest in this system anyway. Uh, that system."
Mama Jupiter glanced at Claudia.
''There are people who'd kill you for the chance," she said at last.
"No doubt," said Rufus affably. "Everyone has a home. By the way, Old Maken's dead."
Wilfred and Alfred sucked in air, visibly shocked. A waitress snickered, then fell to the slaps of her peers.
Mama Jupiter pursed her lips.
"Poor old bastard," she said, taking her cigar between meaty fingers. "Did he avenge his family, at least?"
Rufus' only response was a shrug.
"Revenge is a tricky game, Darlene. I'm sure you know that."
This time, Mama Jupiter didn't even correct him. She sat down by Claudia, fished a comb from her pocket and began to brush the girl's hair.
"I hate you and everything you stand for," said Addward, sprawled on the bartop like an exhausted feather-boa. "I detest your entire existence."
Rufus glanced down, as if only just remembering.
"And I love you too, you money-munching sop!" he laughed, rubbing him all across the bartop like a lint roller.
Addward attempted to respond, but could not. The Tauran paused to survey the extremely crowded mess, now stuffed not with tables but with rows and rows of silver airline seats and the beings in-between. The portholes showed not purple, but nothing. Complete blackness.
"Well," he said at length, "you'll get out eventually. Now, I have some very important matters to discuss with some people, so before we go do that, is anyone looking for the Orb of Origen?"
There was an ominous pause. The patrons and guests turned to each other in their various states of repose, as if acknowledging some unknown intent, some secret hitherto hidden. Eyes went to knives. Hands went to guns. Chins went to chin-activated fletchette blasters.
"Why would we do that?" called a sole voice. "That's so dumb!"
The entire mess dissolved into a burble of fervent agreement.
"Yeah, stupid idea!"
"I wouldn't send my son after the Orb if he begged me!"
"Heck, I wouldn't send my son's girl after the Orb if he begged me!"
Rufus turned to the Party, a glint in his eyes.
"You see?" he grinned. "These people have sense. Come along now. If you seek the Orb, follow me!"
"Ah, pull your tail out of your nose-ring, Rufus!"
Rufus chuckled. Leaving Addward thoroughly rolled, he threw his coat back and strode out from behind the bar.
"There has to be someone," he remarked. "There always is."
Edited by troydenite on May 14th 2019 at 4:11:41 AM
"Most amusing, barkeep of Minos..."
A low voice spoke from the other side of the bar, emanating out from a towering figure of brass armor and red hide which had been hanging for dear life from a seat cushion. The man's eyes glimmered. They flicked over the assorted riffraff and common scum like a predatory fish examining a reef for morsels.
"But you know the answer to that, as do my benefactors."
Edited by Colonial1.1 on May 13th 2019 at 8:42:49 AM
“...Darlene... that's a nice name...” an exhausted rellan murmured between greedy breaths, only barely beginning to recover from her exertion down below.
Kyxe soon diverted her attention from the matter of the woman's oddly pleasant name to the low sneer of a newcomer by the bar—one she definitely hadn't seen before and one she probably should've given the sheer lack of subtlety dripping from his every word.
“Is it ‘no’? That'd be a nice change. It isn't though, is it?” she inquired, staring longingly after Rufus but acknowledging with some disappointment that she was too tired to even move.
Perhaps a drink would help.
“Andratite, there's a flask in the inside pocket of my jacket. Which is currently around your arm,” she helpfully reminded. “Could you get it for me please?”
She's really very spry for someone without a quarter of their whole body mass.
Lamb merely hummed softly as the ship passed through into the void. Not the Void, from whence Icathia's ruin came, but the void of space, the darkness between stars where Aurelion Sol's light could not reach. It was a comforting darkness, Lamb thought. The blackness matched Wolf's fur.
Wolf merely thought it was boring. So when Rufus made his announcement, he excitedly bounded over to the Tauran, almost drooling. Lamb followed after, moving deftly around the gaggle of others. "The Orb is mine. I want to crush it, between my teeth."
"I should hope no others seek it. There is no true 'immortality', after all. Such a power is nothing more than a false hope, that one may escape, may run from Death." Lamb's voice was a murmur compared to Wolf's, yet still carried throughout the room. "And those who run from Death, stood still in Life."
Ferem Ose Kalea - Egress Eternal
The Green Sun Prince ran a hand through her hair. She was not looking forward to making something worthwhile out of this lot. It'd be an uphill battle indeed. She almost felt like sobbing. It had seemed so easy when her fellow peers boasted of this and that cult they had formed whilst in Creation. More fool her for taking their grandstanding at face value. Come to think of it, half of those cults had been placed at their disposal anyway by the Yozis and the Unquestionable.
At times like these, she was tempted to agree with the wisdom of the Endless Desert, and her wish to impose the laws of Hell upon creation. But that was the rub of it, wasn't it? Impose. Kalea wasn't entirely comfortable with that, though it certainly had its upsides. Still, she would prefer to extract people's consent first.
It was easier with demons. They knew their place in the descending hierarchy, and they showed due deference to their superiors. Earning the friendship of a sodality had been a straightforward affair in the end. She needed merely to pose as their benefactor and patron to deter other citizens from interfering, and then she could connect them with certain groups in Creation to set up her trade network. Good thing too, water was such a rarity in Hell, but now she had casks of it sitting in her townhouse. The serfs among the sodality were pleased to be spared the torments of less kind masters, and that particular smuggling ring in Creation had a source of Malfean trinkets they could peddle. Win-win on all sides.
The mention of the Orb of Origen snapped her out of her reverie. Kalea still had no idea what the thing was, but as a scion of House Ferem and peer of Hell she was not going to back out at the first indication of challenge. Sporting a winsome smile, she followed Rufus without a word.
Edited by joergenjetsam on May 13th 2019 at 11:21:11 PM
"And yet you are deathless yourselves, dog and sheep of Hades."
Said the armored man quietly, eyes flicking to Lamb briefly while ignoring the Wolf. His shield rested lightly in the seat, one hand polishing it absently with his rawhide cloak.
"My world...is a war-torn, Rift-riddled place," began Kayne cautiously, looking around at the rest of the party. "Warlords have already carved it up for their own purposes, everyone else be damned."
"It wasn't always such a heartless place. The stories—my books—they all spoke of a world at peace. The world before the Great War," she continued. "Free speech! Intellectualism! Literacy! No monsters dogging your footsteps! Less bigotry and ignorance against anyone who wasn't human or special! Running water! Beds! RELIGION! ACTUAL WORKING TOILETS!"
"But no. Instead I get a stinking bombed-out shithole to live in. And a currently-ghost-town rebel township for my birthing place," Kayne spat bitterly. "I am uneasy about this Orb. I am uneasy about its promises. But someone should at least try to help people...right?"
"And if the damned thing should be proven corrupt, I'll be happy to rig a bomb on it and make it go GOOSH. Good riddance either way—"
She was interrupted by Moko. "Err, what about the guide you wanted to write?"
"I'll work on it sometime," Kayne snapped irritably, starting to polish her guns aggressively.
Edited by JumpingFruit on May 13th 2019 at 6:33:22 AM
Not knowing how to respond to Kayne's rant, Lamb settled for turning her glowing gaze on the gruff, armored man.
"No. Even we, one day, will End. When there is nothing left but the Kindred."
"Will you run from me then, Little Lamb?"
"I would never run from you, Dear Wolf."
As soon as Rufus put out the call for seekers of the Orb, one individual in the transformed bar was immediately in motion toward him, wading with surefooted and confident purpose through the tense and then slightly less tense crowd. He was a man with eyes of jade and long, luscious locks of red, almost orange hair, decked out in an elaborate, fire-colored ensemble — indeed, fire-themed, given the detailed golden flames stitched into the sleeves. With his left hand he held a handsome red pipa across his torso, tapping a steady time on the base of the thing with one of the silver, ruby-fitted picks upon his right.
"I dunno, seems to me that if ya had ultimate power at your fingertips, ya oughta be able to make as many things in the world last forever as ya wanted, yeah?" the instrument in his hands interjected to the deathly duo in a somewhat nasal voice, the jaw on its sculpted head moving mechanically up and down in tune with its speech, "But anyway, who says we're lookin' for the Orb 'cause we want to live forever? My buddy Lang Wu Yao here just wants to put an end to a really nasty curse, and he figures the Orb'll do the trick if nothing else will!" Lang grunted in confirmation.
"And sounds like ya've had it real rough, Hat Kid," the pipa added to the Hat Kid, "but good on ya for trying to make the best of it and help others! That's a real admirable trait ya got there! Ling Ya, by the way," he said by way of introduction.
Edited by darksidevoid on May 13th 2019 at 7:09:08 AM
The man arched an eyebrow under his helm as the pair of psychopomps whispered to each other, then reached under his cloak. He drew out a dark red slice of meat, dried until it could be called jerky, then brought it to the darkness around his mouth. There was a silver-grey gleam, a smart CLICK of teeth, and a sizeable chunk of meat disappeared. He chewed that over for a moment while staring at the two, then shifted his gaze to the teenage girl with the hat.
"Foresight is a good quality in one so young. But were it a poisoned chalice, there would be no point to this journey."
"Nice to meet you too, Ling Ya, said Kayne, voice soft after her rant. "I'm Kayne. This is Moko."
"How do you do?" said Moko, politely tipping himself. "I say, it is refreshing to meet another sentient object quite like myself."
"I'm sure the lessons learned and the people met along the way to the Orb would pay in case my quest turned out to be a dud," Kayne reasoned decisively. "It's not like we can't share the Orb and then destroy it afterwards...But then again, human nature might get in the way. Who's to decide that my wishes are worth more than another's?"
Egress Eternal, Lumisa Kosugi
It was rather strange, being in such a place full of decidedly non-human beings while they weren't out baying for your blood. Such was the thought of one quiet if contemplative woman clad in the practically stylish overall garb of one disposed to digging up what was buried under the sands of time (as well as the physical particles proper). Overall for one to be wearing a fedora, leather jacket, khaki trousers, and work boots were nothing special if they were separate articles... and yet when put together it made for a sort of classical impression... a most zeitgeist sum if you would.
Still, simply posing was different from living the parallel lifestyle. While others were merely content with the look, she pursued the lifestyle with almost crazed abandon until her very being was saturated with 'adventure'. Blood was thicker than water and Kosugi blood was especially thick with the spirit of venturous curiosity. One could even say they were literally born into such a role, whether it be due to genetic manipulations or generation spanning tradition.
The calling was clarion ever since she could develop a properly thinking mentality, desirous passions pushing the girl into honing skills that would allow for the highest chance of achieving both the sweet dreams she had and the success to continue enjoying such a mindbogglingly pure ideal to the point of being called childish fantasy. And now, here she was after traversing the bowels of the prison ruins Eg-Lana, host of the Ninth Child who bore naught but Mother's wrath towards her Children for daring to put her to eternal rest.
Mind roving back from remembering that particularly spectacular journey that had been her first foray into the magical realm of adventure that was pretty much everything she believed it to be and more, a slight smile came onto her mouth as the corner of lips quirked up ever so slightly in fond remembrance in the face of such a heart-throbbing adrenaline rush. The fate of the world had rested in the literal hands of this virgin explorer and she had triumphed in the face of such impossible adversity through sheer stubbornness, quick wit, and a solid core of pragmatic ninja skillz. Yep, life was good.
Fate it seemed had deigned it fit to let the rising rookie enjoy something of the same level as her previous job if not even more grand in scale- that of the search for an Orb of such immense power that no one knew what it was truly capable of. And so, here Lumisa Kosugi was now. Not to search for the wish granting MacGuffin but to personally experience the journey leading up to such a great artifact. Yes, this was what she wanted in life most of all. Much like those who enjoyed vintage stock, there was no hurry. If anything, the wait would only deepen the anticipation and make the event all the more grand and enjoyable, payoff resulting in pleasure beyond description. A light sigh was let out, light and exultant as her mind imagined what could happen next.
The current crew and possible party members were already an eclectic combination of factors that were akin to vinegar and baking soda just about to collide, or perhaps like that of wooden house whose resin had caught afire. Though violent, vitriolic, and overall self-destructive there in itself laid a beautiful story that was being unfolded to her thrill-seeking eyes. Just had to make sure that she was sufficiently far away enough to enjoy the show without getting burnt but hey, thrills needed a certain amount of danger to be worth anything.
Well, this was turning into an interesting day.
Rotgut had only been in town an hour or so, and the first thing she’d done (after getting over her bewilderment, anyway) had been to hit up a tavern. It was always smart to get the lay of the land whenever you were new to a place. If you could get acquainted with the local layout while also getting acquainted with the local liquor, so much the better. Mama Jupiter’s had that, and dancers to boot. So Rotgut had been ready to sit back, take a load off, and enjoy what vices this town had to offer before getting down to business.
Then some dumb bitch blew a hole through the proprietress. Things went downhill from there.
Now Rotgut lay at the back of the crowd, half-draped across a chair and half-sprawled across the floor in a tangle of limbs. The last few minutes had gone by too quickly for her to fully grasp what happened, but she seemed to remember tumbling and falling through the air as everything spun around her in a disorienting blur. She vaguely remembered trying to grab hold of a table as it hurtled toward her (or as she hurled toward it?) to try and steady herself… and catching its edge with the side of her face instead.
That would explain a few things. Like why her chin was resting squarely between her shoulder blades. Or why she had an unobstructed view of her own ass.
Alfonse was right, she mused. That was the regiment’s ass.
Well, it could be worse. At least her head was still attached this time.
Rotgut dragged herself out of the chair and stood up slowly. One quick and practiced wrench later, her head was back in its proper orientation. And by sheer good luck, she could see the point of her katzbalger’s scabbard the last two feet of Sturm sticking out from under a nearby chair. Either she’d remembered to grab them on the way out, or some twist of fate had deposited them here for her convenience.
As she retrieved her weapons, she heard a voice asking if anyone was looking for the Orb of Origen. If that hadn’t gotten her attention, the subsequent hush that fell over the crowd certainly would have. And then the silence gave way to a hubbub of dithering and denials.
“Bah.” Her voice was low, phlegmy, dripping with a mix of mockery and disgust. “If you pussies are too scared to look for the Orb, then what the fuck are you even doing out here? You should have stayed in whatever worlds you came from.”
She shoved and shouldered her way through to the front of the throng. Nestling Sturm in the crook of her left arm and folding her arms across her breastplate, she studied the man who had obviously asked the question, and the others who had come to answer it.
A minotaur with the face of an actual bull. A kid in an apron, wearing a hat—talking, no less—with a giant eyeball and a mouth full of sharp teeth. A pair of creepy animals, one a wolf, the other… something else… with matching white fur, skull masks, and glowing blue eyes. An eight-foot-tall man dressed like one of those old Roman statues her regiment had looted from a former client's estate, except with a fish-shaped helmet. A flamboyantly-dressed woman—or was that a man?—who was clearly obsessed with the color red and carried an expensive-looking lute. Another woman, whose hair seemed to be on fire. And several more besides, though they were hard to make out from where she was standing.
Weird. Fucking weird. But then, so was everything else in this place. And who was she, the zombie landsknecht, to judge?
A smirk broke out across her ragged lips. “Good to see I’m not the only one in this room with a spine.” She grinned, revealing blackened gums and rotten teeth. “Colonel Rotgut, at your service.”
Edited by SullenFrog on May 17th 2019 at 7:52:29 AM
Andradite - Egress Eternal
Andradite let out a soft sigh and sunk down to sit cross-legged on the deck. Everything had calmed down a little, there was no longer any risk of imminent doom, and her body was no longer ringing like a chime. There were a bunch of interesting people hanging around the bar - which wasn't really a bar anymore, now she looked at it properly - but before she could go and check them out there was something she needed to do - repairs. No point investigating anything just yet, in case there were already memories of that Spessartite-looking person in the robes stored in her thumb, for instance.
She was just finding a clear spot to sit when Kyxe spoke, the gem blinking and looking up at her for a moment.
"... oh, right! Yeah, sure, one... sec..." Andy gingerly unwrapped Kyxe's cool jacket from around her arm, wincing slightly at the crystalline tinkling sounds that accompanied every motion. Yeah, at some point the whole mess had just fallen off at the elbow, but thankfully it was in mostly two or three big pieces.
"You can have this back now, actually," She handed the whole garment back to Kyxe, after making sure every splinter and shard had been shaken out and arranged on the floor beside the big chunks. From inside her shoulder bag, the gem produced a small ceramic pot and a paintbrush, rubbing the back of her head and looking between the glinting green stump of her elbow and the pieces laid out before her.
Maybe it was some weird side effect from the rift, or maybe it was just Dive's sickly purple sunlight, but she felt like losing this much mass shouldn't leave her feeling so tired.
"Could I actually get a, eheh, a hand?"
"Well, most people have a spine, Miss," Moko said to Colonel Rotgut. "It's just that—"
"Very few choose to use it," finished Kayne grimly as she bent down to pick up Andy's pieces and help her glue herself back together like a jigsaw puzzle.
"Right, this is your body, any idea what goes where?" she asked.
“Yeah. Thanks,” Kyxe responded almost automatically, her formal tone momentarily vanishing as she withheld herself from snatching the garment off of the crystal being. She took a greedy gulp of the contents in the flask upon finding it, grimly noting that it had little more than half left upon finishing.
She was getting agitated, and she knew it. A diplomatic attitude was exhausting to put on, especially if it had been nonstop her whole time here. She needed to stop a second. Relax. Think about things.
After a pause, she reached into the collar of her shirt and fished out her pendant.
And so she sat there, gazing at the thing as it shifted in pattern and glowed with a soft, multicoloured light. Her jacket lay over her lap almost protectively, but she seemed more caught up with the thing clutched in her hand anyway.
It almost looked like she was listening to it.
Rotgut let out a snort. “Good words. I’ve heard them before.” She smirked in amusement. “Never thought I’d hear ‘em coming out of a talking hat.”
She leaned slightly to the side, looking over the shoulder of the hat’s owner. The kid in the apron was helping another kid—pale, skinny, dressed in black, with some absurdly shiny green hair woven into long braids—tend to injuries on her face. Or at least, that’s what Rotgut thought at first. Scarred eyebrows rose as she realized that she was looking at green crystal under the injured girl’s chalky skin, and that the two of them were literally gluing slivers of it back into place.
And if she was not mistaken, there was part of an arm—several parts, actually—lying on the floor with the rest of these slivers and shards.
Right. The memories were starting to come back now. This was the gem girl everyone had been fighting over just before everything went pear-shaped. She’d figured the little blue shitter was being figurative when he’d called her that.
Guess the joke was on Rotgut. Even the kid’s hair was made of crystal, now that she looked closer.
“See you took a hit there.” Rotgut’s expression went neutral, tone softening. “You holdin’ up okay, Green?”
Edited by SullenFrog on May 17th 2019 at 7:50:51 AM
Antiphates feels Phogic
At the zombie's words, and Kayne's own response, including also the spectacle of a mute with a talking thinking musical instrument, the Grecian warrior could take no more. He threw back his head and laughed. His voice filled the room with booming guffaws and hysterical cackles, his slab-like and silver-edged teeth on full display for any who looked his way to see. He slammed his sandal-like boot into the floor a few times for good measure before he stopped to breathe. When he looked up, though, his expression looked more like bared teeth than a smile.
"So a woman's stench-ridden corpse, a plucky little girl and her hat, a pair of fleabitten psychopomps up their own arses, and a mute whose gaudy toy talks for him have more collective balls than most of the men in this gods-forsaken room. Zeus's thunderous shit, are those chaff who you intend to make your ship's crew, minotaur? Do tell me that this is so, and that this day improves from now."
Egress Eternal - Ferem Ose Kalea
What was this? One of the undead, yet with their mental faculties seemingly in good condition. Unheard of.
Curiosity kindled in her heart. She had yet to meet one of the undead. She knew of ghosts and shambling corpses of course, but here one seemed to blend the features of both. Some of her brethren had ventured into the underworld, but the area had never caught her interest. An oversight it seemed she needed to rectify.
Rufus forgotten for the time being, she walked back towards the crowd.
"Hey, colonel!" she shouted, "Is that a military rank? You have the bearing of one." She paused and looked Rotgut up and down with a smile. That was a lovely outfit, both incredibly gauche and somehow charming despite or because of it. "Pray, tell me of your exploits, if that is what you are."
The giant was of no interest to her, for the moment.
"Oh yeah, You can tell by looking at the shear planes and the powder surfaces." The gem gave Kayne a cheerful smile, casually pointing at the various detached bits of her own body. "I've seen Rutile do this lots of times. I'm not as good as them, but I've fixed myself before. Pass me the resin?"
With Kayne's help, Andy brushed a thin layer of resin onto the glinting surfaces of each piece and gently fit them back together, working to reassemble her whole arm before trying to reattach it. This might be the first time Kayne noticed that Andy's "skin" was actually a layer of powder meticulously brushed over almost her whole surface, thankfully quite resilient to rubbing off on cloth and fleshy bits. The deft fingers on the gem's good arm felt along each join, making sure everything was straight and well-seated before moving to the next shard. If you looked away for a moment, it would have been hard to find the cracked seams again.
She looked up as a shriveled-looking person spoke to her, the gem's expression still casual, if a little tired. "Ehhh... I guess it was a bit scary when I thought Begonia was going to run off with a piece... but I got it back, so everything's gonna be fine."
To demonstrate, she gave Rotgut a little wave with her stump.
Edited by LittleMako on May 14th 2019 at 7:10:12 AM
Rotgut smiled at the demonstration and gave an approving nod. “That’s the spirit, Green.”
She might have said more, but at that moment a laugh like a rolling thunderhead caught her attention. She glanced toward the sound, and saw the eight-foot fish-helmed man busting his gut, stomping on the floor like he was laughing at some private joke. Then he straightened up, baring his teeth like an ape warning off a rival, and began to insult most of the people in the room.
Rotgut said nothing ‘til his rant was done. “Zeus, huh?” She glanced at Green and the girl with the talking hat out the corner of an eye the colour of curdled milk. “Guess the Romans haven’t happened yet in his world,” she said with a conspiratorial wink, before remembering that they might not even know what the Romans were. “I’ll explain later if you need me to.”
Then someone called out to her. Rotgut straightened up as the woman with the flaming hair approached her, and at her words the zombie grinned. “Sure is. Colonel Rotgut, seventeenth commander of the Falkenstein Stormbringers landsknecht regiment, at your service.” She doffed her hat and gave a deep, extravagant bow, transferring Sturm from crook to hand as she did so. Her vertebrae creaked audibly as she straightened up. “And I’d love to tell all you about my exploits, Miss…?”
Edited by SullenFrog on May 17th 2019 at 7:47:47 AM
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