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Thread: Spirit Pulse : Mugen No Sekai [IC]

  1. #1841
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Aster
    Saint Vivienne ~ Dormitories
    11/16/2026
    Monday - Evening


    Quote Originally Posted by Aster
    “I’d hope my circumstances aren’t as dire as yours, no offense.”
    "You'd probably know if they were, to be honest."

    Not like that kind of ability is subtle, having your existence fervently denied by humanity as a whole is something you tend to notice; powers got taken away, divinity went poof, and then they left me to struggle alone in a World that wasn't my own without even giving me the decency to laugh in my face.

    It'd have been better if they laughed, to be honest, at least that would have been acknowledgement, but...

    Well, their Collective Consciousness probably thought it was poetic, karmic justice...

    I can sort of see where they were coming from, still pisses me off a little, but I've managed to crawl my way back into some power at least, still...

    Quote Originally Posted by Aster
    “Somewhere along the line, the world decided I have to go? Is Ayra in a similar situation?” She prays that isn’t the case. Bad for her virtual heart. “Well, even if she isn’t, I still need to get out of here.”
    "...Well, I'm not exactly sure what happens if it actually gets you. Maybe it kills you, maybe it just 'fixes' your cognition so you aren't a destabilizing element and sends you on your way. Although, I suppose that second idea would be a form of death all it's own..."

    Death of personality and all that, the existential horror of whether or not you are 'you' without your memories, not something that's fun to think about I must admit, but some research into the topic gave me a more or less satisfying answer, but I digress...

    "But yes, there is something 'off' about you, or perhaps something is off about Ayra... Either way, the connection the two of you share means that trouble one of you gets in is trouble for the other, that's the sort of backhanded nature of bonds that shows up from time to time. It's not all good things."

    Quote Originally Posted by Aster
    “Are you here to watch me squirm and struggle? Or can we broker out a deal?”
    "Eh?"

    I blink.

    She seems to think I'm some sort of villainess... Well, perhaps from a certain point of view I was, once upon a time, but after brooding about my punishment and motivations for a good 46 billion years I can gracefully say that I am an ally to the banished, of course, that doesn't mean I don't find watching entertaining, and I am far from being some sort of hero or other vague ally of justice, but...

    'If you wish to understand humans, you cannot afford to be an onlooker.'

    That man told me something like that, of course, considering he was an incarnated idea himself, the fact that he would lecture me about just standing aside and watching the world play out like a story was hilarious, I mean, these sorts of humans existed on a lower plane than me back then, they might as well have been characters in a story, so of course I was gonna act like I did, but... You get bored being immortal and eventually petty reasonings like 'screw that guy and his moronic speeches' fall away completely.

    Helps that those 'characters' sort of beat the hell out of me.

    Can't help but respect them a bit after that.

    "Little of Column A, little of Column B, can't deny I like watching a good old fashioned desperate struggle."

    Damn it.

    I decide to talk casually just like she wanted and then the sarcasm starts pouring out of me.

    Ah well, she can deal with it.

    "I was mostly here to warn you that there's an uh... Thing... Making it's way over here right now to get you. But if you want to make some sort of deal we can do that too I guess, favor for a favor. What do you want?"
    Last edited by Airen; October 19th, 2021 at 10:37 AM.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  2. #1842
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Ludwig Karlfeldt
    Brewed Awakenings ~ SLEIPNIR
    11/16/2026
    Monday ~ Evening


    While a part of you had certainly been hoping to find the older man here, a possible fountain of information inside the depths of what appeared to be a world entirely constructed out of dreams, the sheep-haired man fails to make an appearance inside of the warmth of the ever pleasant cafe...

    It's not entirely surprising, after all...

    Since when had the World been keen on cooperating with you? Things always had to be difficult, and in this scenario, under these circumstances, that difficulty might be an actual force of sorts, an unconscious 'will' drifting through everything and keeping the World intact, after all, you can't tell it's a false world at all, not with any of your senses at least. The air feels normal, the ground beneath your feet feels normal, the flow of reiki itself in the air feels entirely normal, so completely unchanged that it's only your memories of the other world that tell you that something is wrong...

    Still, putting those thoughts aside...

    When you enter the mostly empty cafe, a certain mark of contract with Vincent (still present on your person) does glow faintly for a moment, the light shaking of the trinket a sign that it had apparently responded to the room in some way... But that way was not obvious by any means, and looking around the area, the strange door he had made with his powers was seemingly gone, and behind the counter....

    "Heya Ludwig!"

    ...Was a cheerful Anna, cleaning out glasses with all the finesse of an experienced bartender.

    "Came in to escape the sun too? Honestly, it's way too warm outside for my tastes~"

    Seems she was doing... Fine...?

    And sitting in front of her, pen silently scribbling away at a -rather massive- stack of papers in front of her...

    Was Astra.

    Who...

    Doesn't seem to notice your presence in the slightest...

    Must be focused on her work.
    Last edited by Airen; October 20th, 2021 at 04:58 PM.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  3. #1843
    Ludwig Karlfeldt
    Brewed Awakenings ~ SLEIPNIR
    11/16/2026
    Monday ~ Evening

    ---No Vincent.

    Even though the bracelet formed of the contract Ludwig had signed still shows it's effect, the doorway the dream demon had created out of thin air was nowhere to be seen. An indication that this is no longer a dream and thus the fabric of reality isn't as easily broken, perhaps, or maybe it's simply a thing that forms itself only when there are no conscious onlookers nearby to witness the blatant disregard for the laws of the universe. For all Ludwig knows it only forms when he's asleep, so either way it's hard to conclude anything meaningful from just this much.

    Still, without Vincent around the boy can't help but worry for a moment.

    Until his eyes land of Astra, that is.

    "Oh, hey Anna. Sorry I missed the meeting..."

    Absentmindedly he greets the ship's pilot, who seems strangely cheerful despite the ship's state. Had this unexpected time off of the controls been good to her, or was something else at play?

    Questions for later.

    Something takes priority over all else.

    Namely---

    "...Astra, are you okay?"

    ---The fate of the girl who had been forcibly taken away in that nightmare.

    She had faced LUCID, but had she been able to escape their machinations before Marlene did whatever she did, or had she fallen victim to them like Ludwig had?

    The boy was rather worried about her. Understandably so, with her final moments being shot at, blinded by the element she's weakest too, and teleported away.

    Still, given Ludwig's own revived state, perhaps she too had suffered plenty before the world shifted into it's current state.

    "What happened to you, did you manage to defeat the Alcheringa? Did others find you after you were teleported?"

    Curious eyes wander over to the stacks of paper she's been writing on even now.

    Just what had she been going through until now?

  4. #1844
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm


    ---Thunder cracks loud as you dart into the shadows, the sound almost like that of a booming fit of laughter in the darkness.

    The previous shelter granted by the overhang is gone, exposing your skin once again to that bizarre mix of water and blood, the rich scent of iron roaring to life in a town that hadn't been bloodstained in a long time; it's like a regression, like an old spiritual wound from the past had been ripped open, depositing the land into a state similar to that of what it had been during the first and second Kyuubi incidents. A crimson sky, blood stained streets, dark pits of black mud and the low groans of pain, constant and almost overbearing, a memory of the past on repeat.

    If that was the case... Things might make more sense...

    For the people of this town, those incidents were carved into the depths of their psyches... While they had ultimately proven victorious over the manifestation of the darkness in humanity's hearts, their memory of it was still powerful, still strong, strong enough perhaps to fulfill the role of a town nightmare, and if this was all some sort of bizarre half-dream, here in this town where everyone was more or less linked...

    Then of course it might look something like this, the darkness in human hearts was not subtle when it manifested in reality, it was almost childishly blunt, a darkness so deep and obvious that anyone who has even a drop of human blood in them would know it for what it was when they saw it, and yet...

    It felt like there was more to it than that, although thinking of it as a "bad dream" for now, and thus acknowledging that nonsensical things might happen, may just be your best defense against it for now.

    ---You don't have far to go anyway.

    The soba shop was just up near the end of Brick Lane, of course, the normally clear streets are coated with thick writhing shadows that dance without a light source to cast them and the buildings that line the street on both sides look a bit different too, the usual cedar board siding they all shared replaced by a thick gritty limestone, and...

    All the windows are walled up, as if someone had painstakingly closed off every entrance to every building from the outside, without actually removing the frames around windows and doors-

    "...?"

    -no, actually...

    In one of the buildings (the Mokujima Bakery) if you were remembering correctly, you can see a sort of... Flickering light...

    Like someone carrying some sort of light was walking back and forth past an unbarred window, and yeah... That seems to be the case, the second story windows of that building weren't walled in like the others, but...

    Hard to tell if that was relevant or not, after all, your goal was to rescue Fia, and...

    That uncomfortable feeling of eyes being on the back of your head...

    Was rather... Unsettling...

    Not fear, but some sort of primal instinct...

    One that says "you're being watched right now."
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  5. #1845
    approaching euthymia Katie's Avatar
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    Aster
    Saint Vivienne ~ Dormitories
    11/16/2026
    Monday - Evening


    It figures that if you ask someone to act casual, you get a bit of sass, Aster thinks, but at least Aislynn is surprisingly amenable to conversation. Maybe she’s being the rude one here? In fact, Aislynn did say she came to warn her about what is coming to get her, not that either of them knows what it will do, it seems. What a headache to deal with.

    “You help me get outta here, I help you get outta here? Honestly, I dunno what to bargain—not like I know what’s going on, or how much I can do.”

    Aster simply states the truth. There’s not much leverage that she is aware she has, and mostly, it was just a shot in the dark. If her survival is at stake, she needs to do something, and when push comes to shove she’s down to grasp at straws.

    “But, er, if we want to start simple, you can help me avoid whatever’s chasing me and we can hash out the terms and conditions along the way? Just so you know, breathing’s optional in this body, so I have all the time in the world to run my mouth.”

  6. #1846
    Click the moon for extra scenes Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm

    "Yeah yeah... I know you're out there..."

    Blaise muttered that under his breath as he took a sideways glance into the darkness of the familiar-yet-not street. The feeling of something, something dark and something dangerous, stalk his every move and constantly breath down his neck was unmistakable. It wasn't an instinct that he had gotten too used to, but at the same time, he wasn't unfamiliar with it either. Aoyama was full of weirdos, and his life was weirder than the most. One would only have to think back to earlier today with the whole fiasco at the Demon Server and the battleship...

    ... So that's why, though he felt it and acknowledged it, Blaise didn't react to it.

    He simply stayed as sharp as he could, quietly telling Kaguya in his mind to prepare appropriate countermeasures in case anything happened.

    But that still left him with one problem.

    ----- The window.

    "Mokujima Bakery... huh?"

    Gazing up to the second floor window, Blaise frowned. He wasn't exactly familiar with the inhabitants of the house - not really. He had bought bread from them few times, and that was about it. But still, they were fellow inhabitants of the Brick Lane, and even if they weren't, that didn't mean he could just ignore them. Fia might have been his main goal and target, but just brushing off someone who might have been in trouble - especially considering their hurried pacing back and forth in the room... that just didn't sit right with the blonde boy.

    So, after only a moment's deliberation, he made his call.

    That being, taking few steps back, accelerating into a sprint, and leaping over to the second floor so he could cling to the wall next to the window.

    "----Hmph!"

    With one hand, he caught hold of the architecture. At the same time, his feet went to find some bits and pieces of masonry that jutted out to support him. Thus, like and over-sized gibbon or rather, a very weird-looking cat, he hung to the wall of the building. After all, he couldn't access it from the first floor, and throwing rocks at the glass was just rude, so that only left him with one choice really.

    Making do, yet being polite.

    Knock, knock, knock!

    Blaise's hand rapped on the window three times and he peered in.

    "Hey! You okay in there?" He asked, careful not to raise his voice too much or appear threatening.

  7. #1847
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm


    Climbing up to the second story of the building isn't too difficult, at least, once you adjust a bit for the slipperiness of the strange limestone bricks. Now that you're right up on it, you can tell with absolute certainty that that is what this material is, a strange sort of eroded limestone that seems to be overtaking the building itself like a bizarre growth or cancer, something that doesn't quite fit right with this manifest scene of a past tragedy. There had never really been any limestone buildings in this part of town after all, and the way the growths seem to be overtaking the buildings brings to mind a strange image of some sort of western castle, an intrusive thought that fades just as quickly as it had appeared, but...

    It doesn't seem to be a priority at the moment.

    While the limestone is growing, it's doing so at a slow, barely measurable pace, and while the eyes on your back also never leave, your senses don't sense anyone approaching you either... Whoever it is just seems to be standing off in the darkness where they can't be made out, an imperceptible shadow amongst all the other writhing shadows. Nevertheless, putting them aside for now (with Kaguya keeping a look out for any sudden movements) you continue your climb upwards, the decorative trees that line the streets almost seeming to bend over towards you as you ascend to the flickering light, the existence of another person, or perhaps, the existence of some sort of angler-fish, designed to draw people towards it in this bizarre phenomena, so...

    Quote Originally Posted by Blaise
    "Hey! You okay in there?"
    ...Your soft voice is for your own sake too, although the consistent booms of thunder and the lull of the falling rain mean you have to speak a bit louder than you might have liked, still...

    "..."

    For a moment, no response is made; no sound comes from inside the room, and while you can see partway into it (there's the dim glow of what seems to be multiple active computers) the flickering component, that is, the person that had been walking back and forth, seems to have vanished sometime before your arrival... Perhaps they had heard you coming? Or, maybe-

    "...!"

    -the sudden feeling of a spell going off puts those thoughts to rest. It's not an attack spell of course, if you had felt something like that your instincts would have had you throwing yourself off the second story in an attempt to get out of the way, but your nerves still stand up on end as a sudden wave of new scents overtakes the area, scents of flowers and damp woods, like the storm outside had been replaced by a brisk walk through the forest in the evening, in other words, whoever was inside that room had a particularly strong nature presence to them, some association with the deep woods, nature itself, or in other words...

    "...Fine. Perfectly at ease."

    ...Whoever was in there was some sort of demon, or more specifically, considering the nature attunement and lackadaisical voice...

    Some sort of fae.

    "But how about you? Dost thou suffer from visions? Or art thou a vision thyself?"

    A feminine voice chuckles, and a hint of green hair shows itself on the other side, the bespectacled woman on the other end tall and cloaked in shadows.

    "If it is the latter, be warned, I beat the last shadow to death with it's own arms. It was a bit too hands-on, you see? And I do have some obligation to protect this house, even in the depths of a late night vision~"

    Old-fashioned to casual as if her speech itself was ultimately lazy, the vague grin on the woman's face shadowed face makes it seem like she was trying to tell a joke there...

    "But if it is the former, well... State your name and how I can help you, if you would?"

    Yep.

    Considering the nature of that question, this was probably a fae.

    ...Things may become troublesome.



    Encountered: A Fae?

    Last edited by Airen; October 21st, 2021 at 08:35 AM.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  8. #1848
    Click the moon for extra scenes Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm

    "...... Goddammit."

    Blaise uttered that, silently, to himself.

    Perhaps it had been the fact that no matter the change in the environment, no matter the limestone that spread everywhere or the bloody rain, he had seen enough about this town to consider it the same one that he had grown up in - only slightly changed. And that, naturally, had made him think the person in the second floor room had been yet another resident of Aoyama, trapped in here like he was. But no, it looked like his intuition had been slightly off - or perhaps the Mokujimas were hiding some secrets that were better left undisturbed.

    But why oh why did it have to be fae...?

    If there was one type of demon that Blaise could not bring himself to trust, it was them. Everyone else seemed to always operate on a proper logic, even if weirdly twisted - and they had their own type of honor? But fae? Who even knew with them. When your whole being is about being whimsical, you tend to become so alien to common man it wasn't even funny.

    And here Blaise was, hanging from a second-story window, now conversing with one. A bespectacled, older woman type fae that seemed far too mirthful for the current situation.

    --- He didn't like where this was going, no sirree.

    "... My mom told me to never name myself to fae I didn't know. Especially if they don't name themselves," Blaise answered after a moment of quick thinking. "Suffice to say, I'm no vision. If anything, I'm a guy who lives down this street, so I'm a resident - but not of this place when it's like this... whatever this is."

    Yes. Don't give out your name so casually.

    Rule #1 when conversing with fae.

    "Anyways, I'm no shadow either. And I didn't come here for help. Quite the contrary, in fact," Blaise continued as he peered through the window. "I saw someone pacing up and down this room as I was passing by, and figured I'd get up here to see if you were in trouble and needed some help. But judging by what you just said, I take it you have everything under control, huh?"

    She certainly didn't sound like someone who needed help, if she was in the habit of dismembering local spooks.

    "Guess I bothered you for nothing then. Sorry 'bout that."

  9. #1849
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm


    "...Hah~"

    ---As expected, the woman reacts in a whimsical way. Letting out an amused noise after your refusal to share your name with her, that smile that had been much like any other human's slowly stretches out to impossible, uncomfortable degree, the whirrings of an alien mind more than apparent in the fact that she doesn't seem to care if this freaks you out.

    Of course, Fae were like this most of the time.

    When it came to adapting to human society, the various types of demons had varying degrees of success; for instance, hero-types (that is, heroic spirits) had next to no issue integrating themselves into society, they were, after all, the closest of the demon-types to humanity, being myth-enhanced humans themselves, but fairies...

    Well, the minor fairies were already chaotic enough, constantly doing whatever they felt like, only stopping at the point of 'nuisance' because they lacked the power to be a bigger problem in modern society, but the more serious fae, the incarnations of whimsy and nature that 'pulled their act together,' well...

    They could be quite a problem, if they ever decided they wanted to be one.

    They were the second most alien in that regard, with only Fiends being worse, but well...

    The only thing Fiends wanted to do was kill humans, so their nature was absolutely one-hundred percent antithetical to humanity, fae were just...

    Mostly alien to them, things could go well or things could go badly, it was impossible to tell with any certainty.

    "I see, I see... Your mother raised you well then, very smart."

    ---That also meant disengaging from one could be troublesome, if you did it improperly, she might take offense to it.

    And who knows what would happen then?

    "But a resident huh? Let's see... About sixteen...?"

    Of course, fae are troublesome and know it, so this obvious attempt at parsing out your identity was more or less expected...

    "Blonde in an area with predominantly raven-colored hair, the scent of Wales and.... The breath of a dragon?"

    Eyes widen in glee.

    "The Pendragon boy then, that makes sense, that's certainly something Kayda would teach her offspring."

    Kayda?

    Did she mean your mother...?

    She laughs.

    "But I almost feel offended, we have tea every Sunday, but she goes and paints me like a bad person... Ah well, I do like Kayda, so I suppose I can let it pass..."

    Her eyes flash in the darkness, and she opens up the window to you.

    "I suppose it means I must be at least a bit helpful too, that is what it means to be... Friends, after all, correct?"

    She sounds genuinely unsure for a moment, but being a fae, this also doesn't seem to bother her much if at all-!

    "So for safety's sake, you may know and call me as Robin. I will not ask for your first name, pendragon boy, I couldn't be bothered to remember it the first time, so I doubt I'd hold onto it for too long anyway."

    Much like how she doesn't let your obvious attempts at trying to slip out of her grasp keep her from trying to keep you here-!

    "If I were you, I wouldn't continue your journey just yet. The bloody lady of Čachtice is out and about tonight as a vision, keeping the promise she made to your... Father I believe."

    Another chuckle.

    "Best to come inside and wait for her to pass. She is an inpatient one, but she can't breach this room, so those eyes on you should leave before long~"
    Last edited by Airen; October 21st, 2021 at 09:41 AM.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  10. #1850
    Click the moon for extra scenes Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm

    "That shitty old man..."

    For a moment, Blaise's voice flashed with proper anger - something he barely showed to anyone, least of all to strangers, and never to his friends. It was a bitter, boiling liquid that he hid within himself, always keeping it in check... but there were few things that could bring it bubbling to the surface. And one of them was, as it turned out, realizing that despite him dryly joking about it, his father actually having something to do with this nonsense after all.

    Life in Aoyama was never without troubles. But they were daily troubles. Sometimes scary, sometimes painful, sometimes confusing. But never too much.

    Only when it was trouble caused by his father did things go from bad to worse.

    It was the kind of trouble that was too much and spread like a virus.

    --- Just like how he had off and disappeared, leaving Blaise's mother alone.

    That sort of trouble that hurt the people involved, and even those weren't, seriously.

    "... Sorry. But if it's actually dangerous out here, and if that danger's because of my old man, then that's all the more reason I can't stay," Blaise finally answered, pushing down his anger. "I can handle myself sure, but there's someone out there who can't. I have to get them to safety first before I start thinking about myself. Especially since they're just a kid."

    The worry he had in his chest about Fia was becoming stronger and stronger. The thoughts about having your place in the world overwritten were all but forgotten at this point. All that remained was the fact that if that kid was out here all alone, she was in much more danger than he could ever be.

    "So thanks for the offer, Robin, but I'll have to take a rain check. Zaht-Ice's lady or no, I can't just stop here cause I got scared. Maybe once I've gotten her to safety, who knows. But uh... yeah, thanks. It was kind of you to offer," Blaise continued, bowing his head slightly - he did genuinely appreciate the fae looking out for him, trickster or not. "And more than that, if it's a mess my old man left behind..."

    He glanced back into the town, covered by shadows. A tthe same time, he readied to drop himself down to the street.

    "... Guess I'll have to be there to clean it up. Like usual."

  11. #1851
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm


    "...Is that so?"

    In the end, the fae woman's response is simple. While her eyes had lit up a bit when it came to the emotional depths of the response, as if she found it interesting in spite of the overwhelming negativity that came along with this sense of duty, her actual thoughts remain impossible to read in the end, returning to the doll-like expression of a vaguely smiling woman...

    "If you must, you must, that thing will obsessively prey on those of your family. It has no other purpose. A real... Film Obscurite Etendu, an unthinking looping phenomena that will pursue it's target until the end of time... A Personal Nightmare, if you will, something that the target themselves can never destroy."

    She returns to her chair, although she leaves the window open, seemingly unbothered by the idea that monsters roam the darkness outside...

    "If you run into it, don't bother trying to kill it. Physical and Magical strength is meaningless in this case so long as it comes from you, after all... What sort of nightmare allows the dreamer to vanquish it?"

    Eyes light up with stars.

    "If they could do that after all, it wouldn't be a nightmare now, would it?"

    The amused, inhuman smile returns, fingers drum lightly across a desktop, and after a moment of what just might be deep contemplation, she makes a shooing motion at you with her hand...

    "So go on, if you don't die I suppose you could come back here with this... Kid of yours."

    She makes a casual offer, while down below...

    ---Shadows sway and writhe in an almost eager manner as you prepare to return to them, and in the distance, yes...

    In the distance, far enough away that their figure is barely perceptible under this ambivalent green light...

    ---You think you can see the silhouette of a person, someone with long hair and crimson eyes, standing just around the corner that would lead back to the bathhouse.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  12. #1852
    Click the moon for extra scenes Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm

    Blaise snorted.

    "Well, it's a good thing I don't kill. Not my style," he answered in turn, looking a the distant, crimson-eyed figure. "But I getcha. Don't tangle with the fancy French Word. I figured as much, but it's good to get confirmation."

    He then turned to look back at the window, and the fae that could be seen through it.

    "But I'll hold you onto that promise then - we'll be coming back shortly," he added. "Hopefully with that thing not hot on our trails."

    And with that, he let go of his grip on the wall, and dropped down to the street below.

    "--- I'll see you in a bit, oba-san!"

    Leaving that promise behind, Blaise felt the wind rush through his ears for just a moment, before his feet hit the street and he sprung forward like an Olympic runner. With one swift move, he was sprinting down the street, making a beeline to the familiar soba shop. His eyes were focused as well, ignoring the distant silhouette for now. If he wasn't going to fight it, then there was no reason to target it - instead, he only needed to focus on what was important.

    Fia.

    Kaguya could keep an eye on his back while he did what needed to be done.

    And thus, the boy ran.

  13. #1853
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm


    "Not your style? Foolish."

    Spinning in her computer chair, the fae gets back to what she had seemingly been doing before... Something to do with all the computers in the room, showing a bizarre competency when it came to human technology, while at the same time remaining mostly flippant and aloof to your words...

    "Some things are better off completely destroyed, at times, it is a mercy."

    A chuckle, then...

    "---Then again, perhaps ascribing such serious notions to a dream is also a mistake, after all..."

    She doesn't look back again, although...

    "That you have but slumbered here, while these visions did appear. And this weak and idle theme, no more yielding but a dream~"


    Her words.

    A voice like a song, follow you down onto the streets.

    Into the darkness.

    ---The silhouette follows.

    In Kaguya's gaze, an unstable, static-like thing that almost seems to limp -or perhaps lurch?- after the two of you in the darkness. It pays no mind to the open window of the fae, nor does it look back at the flickering lights of the bathhouse, it just follows you at a bizarre pace, slow but unyielding, blending into shadows and emerging from shadows, a red-eyed figure that was...

    Breathing?

    You could hear it's breathing?

    Audible but deep, eager but rusted, like a broken clock scratching at it's own surface, or nails digging into a particularly resilient chalkboard...

    Still, you arrive at the soba shop with distance to spare... It's not moving particularly quickly, but considering all the unknowns that factored into it's existence, it was impossible to tell if that was going to remain the case or not, still-!

    The sight of the once-familiar building was bizarre, even more so than the rest of the street; where the others were just showing bizarre limestone growths, this one seemed like it was on the way to becoming an outright castle, a decayed and eroded fortress of stone that has no entrances or exits. It's quiet here, or at least you think so beneath the rain and the rusted, scratching noises, but...

    Underneath it...

    Just barely audible because of your draconic hearing...

    ---The sound of a child whimpering on the other side of this fortress of rocks.

    Somewhere on the second floor...
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  14. #1854
    Click the moon for extra scenes Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    Aoyama, Brick Lane
    11/16/2026
    Night, Thunderstorm

    ".......!"

    Fia.

    He could hear her. Whimpering on the second floor.

    In other words, his instinct had been right, and the girl was just as caught up in this as he and Anima were. This bizarre reality of world trying to erasure you in a nonsensical and rather convoluted way... or a nightmare full of shadows, as the fae from before had called it. This meant that if Fia was indeed "replacing" him, the process wasn't yet locked - everything teetered in a balance. And perhaps that's why the two of them had been thrown in here. Too many of the same thing caused the world to waver, and now it was a process of elimination.

    Maybe.

    Hell if Blaise knew, he was just more or less making random guesses at this point, not really knowing anything.

    But he did know one thing.

    "Kaguya. Keep a close eye on it," Blaise muttered as he lifted his arm. "Chances are that once I get busy, it'll get agitated."

    And then he took an aim at the wall of the first floor, right about where he knew the front door was. He focused his power, he gathered the energy inside him, and once it had started to build it up, he opened up a path of release for it. Though, unlike how he usually did it, he didn't just push that ramjet of magical energy at a general direction, using it as a kinetic propellant to speed up his movement.

    No, this time, he aimed it more carefully and released it from his right elbow.

    In other words --- an afterburner of white flames and magical energy roared out of his right arm.

    "--- Don't worry, Fia!" Blaise roared. "I'm gonna get you outta there in just a moment!"

    And with that, accelerating his right straight with all the magical energy he could muster, he tried to pierce the wall of stone with a single strike...!

  15. #1855
    The Long-Forgotten Sight Rafflesiac's Avatar
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    Logan Starbright
    Logan's Room ~ SLEIPNIR
    11/16/2026
    Monday ~ Noon


    Throughout their conversation, Verity had been charmingly animated: flitting to and fro, floating from side to side, myriad emotions shining through her voice and expressions. But upon being asked to elaborate about Chris Mokujima---

    "Burroughs is too cute, I'm a brat, and she just stared at Dejah for awhile like she was looking for a flaw but couldn't find one."
    ---She goes flat. With every word she speaks, Verity moves a little bit less. It’s like someone grabbed a kite out of the sky and held it still, pinching each individual streamer to ensure there wasn’t even an inch of unrestrained revelry.

    "Of course I know Mokujima, she's the type who hyper evaluates others while hiding her own feelings and that's just annoying, can't trust it. Bad vibes. Bad vibes."
    With every word she speaks, Verity’s eyes lose their luster. Her face shifts to a stoic frown, flatter than the conceptual cornfields that roam the American Midwest and deeper than the Marianas Trench, much like the expression fan-favorite character Rajesh made in the award-winning sitcom Wage Slaves he’d used to watch with Sarah when his manager from Tarts-R-Us calls him in for a 72-hour shift in the middle of his three-seasons-in-the-making date with Kyla.

    Not even a vampire could suck the life out of someone as effectively as Chris Mokujima. There’s definitely no love lost there. Though given Chris’s monologue after waking, this doesn’t seem like an appropriate response. Could there be memory interference? Is the World filling in reasonable memories to account for inexplicable emotions? Logan looks to his partner, hoping to gauge her response.

    ...Amelia, why are you nodding along with Verity with tears in your eyes and two thumbs up?

    Amelia whistles nonchalantly upon seeing Logan’s raised eyebrow. She summons her own staff and uses it to erase Logan’s drawing with no small amount of glee, clearing the air for more serious matters. Then Amelia speaks, and silence reigns. For a long while, the three simply stare at each other: one shocked, one worried, and one expectant. Finally, Verity speaks.

    "So you're saying... The plan was used...And I told you this...?"
    Tamer and partner nod in unison. Verity spins like a washing machine agitator, sending her clothes and hair rippling out before she suddenly stops to address the two.

    "Show me. It shouldn't be possible, but I can't ignore it just because of that, impossible things happen all the time."
    Amelia looks at the girl before her, once floating without a care in the world.

    Amelia looks at the girl beside her, clutching herself in the grass like the world itself is whipping her.

    Amelia looks at the youth beside her, who bites his lip and nods.

    And Amelia looks at Rice, and hands her
    Verity
    the truth
    .
    Quote Originally Posted by Arashi_Leonhart View Post
    canon finish apo vol 3

  16. #1856
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Logan Starbright
    Logan's Room ~ SLEIPNIR
    11/16/2026
    Monday ~ Noon


    "..."

    Silence follows a seamless transmission of memory data.

    Of course, showing her the events of (what to you felt like mere hours) to her from your own perspectives won't be quite the same as returning her own memories of the event to her, but the sheer sense of quiet that emerges as she looks over the data from what was likely all possible angles -for signs of tampering if nothing else- is enough to bring a quiet, almost morbid atmosphere to the proceedings, then...

    "..."

    After a painfully long quiet...

    Hands reach up to type atop a holographic keyboard; the girl's eyes have become dead serious once again, that hard, almost cold look that was but a step away from the girl that had confronted you in the simulator to question your allegiances to humanity. You're not sure what she's typing -the movement of fingers is more of an instinctual show than a necessity after all- but her apparent input of various bits of data into some sort of server are met with mild childlike swearing, a string of muttered not-so-cute language that nevertheless did fit a certain type of kid...

    The ones who play games online.

    Nevertheless...

    "Not great."

    ---A flat tone of voice follows in the end, when the keyboard fades away and she regards you again with gradient eyes.

    "This is absolutely insane... But it's a good thing you talked to me about it first."

    Biting her lip, the girl sighs...

    Surprisingly, she hasn't quite made the jump to hard-ass that Verity did, but...

    The vaguely disturbed look in her eyes is new.

    Weighted.

    Like she had reacquired a sort of mental burden, and in a sense... That was exactly what had happened...

    "We should... Go somewhere else. Somewhere away from the ship... Boat maybe? There is a lake outside..."

    She frowns.

    "This isn't the sort of thing you want to discuss where you can be overheard by anyone... Just as dangerous for you as it would be for others."

    Eyes close, and a brief sigh can be heard passing through her lips again...

    "Viewpoints that are... contradictory to accepted reality... Are sometimes seen as destabilizing elements by the World after all, especially if the one holding them has high potential to mess up the current narrative."

    She starts towards the door, floating the entire time.

    "Best not to draw too much attention to yourself right away."
    Last edited by Airen; October 29th, 2021 at 04:05 PM.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  17. #1857
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Ludwig Karlfeldt
    Brewed Awakenings ~ SLEIPNIR
    11/16/2026
    Monday ~ Evening

    "Missed?"

    Asks Anna.

    "Did I manage to defeat the... What now...?"

    Asks Astra.

    Both of the girls look confused by your words, both a cheerful smile and a determined scowl turning into two different variations of the classical eye raise... It is, perhaps, not entirely unexpected that these two don't seem to know what you're talking about, Marlene's whole speech and plan doesn't seem like it would work out if everyone was more or less aware that something had happened after all, but...

    "You've been perfectly punctual as always, no need to apologize to me."

    Anna ultimately seems to pass it off easier, shaking her head and muttering something about how everyone needed to get more sleep, while Astra-

    "Don't remember getting in any dangerous fights... So I guess I'm okay...?"

    -seems determined to make an expression akin to a confused owl, head tilting sharply to the side as she regards you with unblinking eyes. She seems much more alert than she had been in your last encounter, although the questioning gaze still bears a hint of suspicion in it for a few seconds, as if the woman was trying to figure out if you had some sort of angle asking about her health here, but...

    Finally...

    After about five seconds...

    That vaguely suspicious gaze relaxes, and the girl leans back in her chair to stretch out locked up muscles.

    "Been in here for the past couple of days, working on reading through the paperwork Mom's teacher threw at me."

    She gestures towards the papers on her desk.

    Of which...

    Philosophical Quarterly

    "_________________"

    By Nick Bostrom

    Volume 53, Issue 211
    Original Draft: 2001, Publishing Date: 2003

    II. THE ASSUMPTION OF SUBSTRATE‐INDEPENDENCE

    A common assumption in the philosophy of mind is that of substrate‐ independence. The idea is that mental states can supervene on any of a broad class of physical substrates. Provided a system implements the right sort of computational structures and processes, it can be associated with conscious experiences. It is not an essential property of consciousness that it is implemented on carbon‐based biological neural networks inside a cranium: silicon‐based-
    A chuckle.

    "Haven't had schoolwork in awhile."

    She seems to be reading and marking in some sort of... Academic Journal...?

    Although...

    Mom...?
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  18. #1858
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Eva Ellet
    Saint Vivienne ~ Dormitories
    11/16/2026
    Monday - Evening

    "Just uh... Don't think less of me, please."

    ---Golden Eyes wander back over to the medicine bottles, a flash of some unknown emotion shooting across the surface of her gaze; indeed, for a moment the young woman doesn't seem sure of what it is she's going to do now... She's being strangely emotional, a sign perhaps, that this medication had some affect on her emotional state, but...

    "...Guess I can't take it back now."

    ...Eventually, her eyes refocus, the more emotional gaze falling away to reveal Catherine's more usually composed one, as if putting on that face helped her focus somehow, and...



    She sets one of the bottles down between the two of you.

    "These are... Uh... Persona Suppressors."

    She shifts her weight in her seat.

    "You know the ability right? The ability to manifest one's personality as an entity? It's kinda like giving shape to fighting spirit I guess... But uh, point being, this medicine was originally designed to make them impossible to manifest."

    A grimace.

    "I take it to... Do something similar to... My uh, Shadow, I guess... It's sort of like a supernatural anti-psychotic in that regard. I guess you could say if I don't take them, 'I' wind up attacking 'myself' with my own persona. Never been able to control it without these... And if I do take the pills... Well, then I get the nightmares and the hallucinations, my body starts having a hard time regulating it's internal temperature and it blunts my emotions a bit... Although..."

    She frowns at the pills.

    "...I missed the last dose... But I don't actually feel all that bad... A little talkative maybe, but... It's normally much worse..."

    She touches her own neck at this, as if she half expected to feel something strangling her and was surprised when no such thing had occurred...

    "...Well, it's not something you need to worry about. You're perfectly safe."

    She reiterates that point again, as if she felt it was important to emphasize, taking one of the pills out of it's container and downing it without water...

    And for her, perhaps it was...

    "But what were we talking about before this...? Your weird SLEIPNIR dream?"

    Rain begins to pelt at the windows, as the girl lightly slaps her own cheeks twice, as if shaking herself awake...

    And indeed...

    "Was there something about it in particular that bothered you..?"

    A strange sort of fatigue has taken shape in her expressions...

    Although her clear desire to escape from what must be a supremely uncomfortable topic remains clear.
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



  19. #1859
    Ludwig Karlfeldt
    Brewed Awakenings ~ SLEIPNIR
    11/16/2026
    Monday ~ Evening

    ---The Reaper of Cognition.

    Seems rather likely she lost in that case, though even if the reverse were true this result was to be expected.

    Marlene wouldn't exude such confidence if it were this easy to stir old memories. In order to fool the world fully, it only makes sense that the dreamers must be rid of their contradictory memories. A single will going beyond consensus reality is still a dangerous thing, but if more souls were to realize and align with Ludwig's views it may be enough to crack through even this ephemeral world.

    Lydia, can you scan through that quickly?

    Sure, give me a second or two.

    In this regard, it seems already an ally presented herself.

    Alexia Wright, Adala's mentor. She had previously thrown Ludwig into a dreamworld of sorts, causing him to realize things beyond what he should rightfully know, even if ultimately that realization was accompanied by a bullet through the heart.

    Done~ Mhmm, 'Are You Living In A Computer Simulation' huh. An article that discusses the likelihood of being simulated lifeforms with the premise that the vast majority of consciousnesses would be simulated ones rather than those of the original creators. This is uh, was she always this blunt about things?

    ...Probably. It does seem like she's heavily suggesting that this is a simulation, which fits with Marlene's statements.

    While the prospect of another potential source of information is by all accounts a good thing, there is one major concern left unspoken...

    Not due to youthful ignorance, or the intoxication of spirit, no. It was done simply because presenting himself as unsure would come across rather badly when face to face with entities like Binit.

    What she had said, implied a certain truth. Whether that truth is immutable remains to be seen but, if it were true---

    If the knowledge of the eternally tormented souls in different worlds causes Xanadu to take a path of certain death...

    ---then should the boy really involve anyone in this? Is it really for the best to put others in mortal peril, for the sake of worlds doomed to unending suffering?

    ...

    Ultimately, the Inheritor knows the right choice... but perhaps there's no need to focus on it just yet.

    With Anna as happy as she is, and Astra calling Adala Mom without issue... perhaps just for the moment Ludwig can remain vague.

    After all, if Marlene is that confident there should be some margin of play in the memories of the current actors. What's lacking from theirs may prove vital to know, what's changed may be too detrimental towards this new world to exist.

    "Oh, Living In A Computer Simulation... I see Alexia has high hopes for you. I think Bostrom's third proposition there has some genuine merit, especially now."

    In that light, one such element showed itself already.

    "Anna, can I ask you to prepare one of those coffee batches you enjoy? I think I'm still half asleep, dreams still playing in the back of my head."

    The Northpole meeting, is curiously absent from Anna's mind. The Karlfeldt boy shouldn't have been asleep for that long, given the date, and if Astra's record of being here for the past days can be taken as genuine... the chance presents itself that this current simulation never had this meeting.

    If there's a link there...

    "I dreamed of something strange, though my memories are rather hazy of it now. The ship was welcoming all kinds of Tamers from other organizations, all for the sake of establishing global unity and connecting the youths, with our destination being the Northpole... Still, it felt so vividly."

    Is there a chance either one of these girls had a similar dream... or is such knowledge buried too deep after all?

    "Oh right Anna, I'm thinking of going to visit my family sooner than I'd planned. You made me promise to bring you along right?"

    Theresia too may still hold more answers, and as Ludwig is still their inheritor it is his duty to report back cases like this, even if it certainly sounds insane.

    Then again... with the ship stranded, was there even any mode of transportation available?
    Last edited by Zurvan; November 6th, 2021 at 05:41 AM.

  20. #1860
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Raz Stone
    Aoyama, Tokyo ~ Skies
    11/16/2026
    Monday - Noon




    Light shines.

    A single blade moving to cut down the divine.

    Even in the depths of the phenomena brought forth by Raz, the gradient world of intermingling reiki, the Wishing Star born within the depths of a Wishing Star surges forth as an a brilliant emerald light. It becomes the focus point of all attention, from the colossal samurai to the massive butterfly, all that regard the light have their attention inexplicably drawn to it, although the alien intelligence within the 'eyes' of that butterfly showed no fear, merely the depths of an eldritch truth that humans could never hope to understand-!

    The World trembles and quakes at the absurdity of the scenario...

    There's simply too much power here, miracles within miracles, the crashing and cracking of phenomena that cannot be restrained coming under fire from the desire to restrain it; power is running wild, far far too wild, and the building scream within reality hints at a backlash that is inevitable, that some sort of price will be paid here by someone or something for this massive transgression on the land, but-!

    That doesn't matter.

    The World might throw a tantrum about all of this in the end, but it will be over long before that-!



    After all...

    The blade strikes true.

    No resistance.

    The shining golden carapace does nothing to even slow the divine cleave, one that rends the enemy asunder from bottom to top, ignoring weak points entirely in favor of simply decimating the opponent with brute force. Even the length of the blade appears to be meaningless, in spite of the impossible difference in size, the moment the knight swings his blade is the same moment that the entity is ripped asunder by a 'blade' far greater than anything that existed in the physical realm, after all...

    "...Farewell."

    ---This man's true sword was his soul.

    That had always been his philosophy.

    The cleaved body screams, whether in pain or simply as a result of impossible machinery being exposed to the outside air is unclear; it's a metallic hell of gears and spirals and golden-fluid like Ichor, that substance that was said to be the blood of the Gods themselves. Creaking and groaning, the physical damage -while catastrophic- could be called outright pacifistic in comparison to the damage that was aimed at the essence of the creature itself. At their very core, those things that existed in the World were made up of the same elements as the World, stronger connections to those elements resulted in differing elemental affinities amongst entities, but at their base state, this could be called an undeniable truth.

    ---This blow severs those connections as well, cutting one off from the wellspring that was the World-!

    In essence, it is the ability to cut others off from the World.

    Those that are cut off can no longer manifest, existence crumbles, the soul weakens, and then-

    The universe itself snuffs you out.

    The eleven lights that surge forth from this entity show the inevitability of this fate, the existence of the being weakens, becomes far, far less oppressive as it fades entirely from existence.

    Or at least...

    That is what should have happened-!



    ===Akashic Record===


    ---But the clock rolls back for a second time.

    This time however, even the other Raz seems surprised by this outcome.

    After all, it is not the result of his song-craft; the magic that had apparently just tore yet another hole in continuity had held a similar effect, but in the end, the origin of that power was different, or perhaps accomplished the same effect through different means...?

    Regardless-!

    "...Tch-!"

    ---The charge starts again, but Zerah's muscles don't falter in spite of the repositioning... In that regard, it seems that everyone kept their memories of the past few moments, instead of just you and the butterfly, thus, the white-haired man is able to adjust his attack and fulfill fate once more, a sign of the sword saint that declares even a redo is a fruitless effort, for the enemy will be cut down every time, however-!

    This time, something is different.

    Another white-haired man -another Zerah?- meets the knight halfway, his form aglow with a brilliant white light that makes the body beneath almost impossible to make out clearly-!



    The clash sends airwaves shooting through the sky, dispersing the very clouds around the battlefield to nothing, and-!

    The Knight's charge stops.

    The second blade he had drawn to counter his other is sparking with damage from it's earlier encounter, but as things are he can't push past his counterpart, the reiki in his other blade slowly beginning to disperse as it is held too long, as the World slowly begins to weaken it, and...

    Watching this stalemate, much like yourself...

    The other Raz... After a quiet moment...

    "..."

    Simply points at the clash and nods at you.

    ---Although that that means... Is somewhat unclear...!
    Spoiler:
    Death is nothing but a disease.
    But it is one that often comes from all sides.
    An end like that is coming, and yet here you are.

    Tell me.

    Could you kill someone you love for the sake of everyone else?


    What a cynical worldview, Messiah.
    Real heroes would find a different answer.


    Right, right.
    The power to break through a sad reality—
    I wonder—

    Will they be able to show it to me?



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