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Thread: Spirit Pulse : Mugen No Sekai [IC]

  1. #861
    Taiga's knight Tobias's Avatar
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    Raz Stone
    New Tomobiki ~ Nagatani Academy
    Akarana Labs (Remnants)
    Friday, Afternoon


    Feel like asking her how she knows your name?

    Wasn't planning on it. Random person pops out of nowhere and starts talking cryptically and casually. Again. Is it Thursday already?

    ...Being a knight is weird huh?

    Plus, she may just have one of my CDs.

    I wont say its impossible, but not as likely as you might think. They appeared right when a bunch of other dimensional hoppers did. Gotta think maybe both she and Burroughs had to do a bit more then pay the Red Car a nickel to make the trip here.


    Still think its your girl?

    Maybe. Hard to be sure. Even odds she is some kind of related program. She seems older then Burroughs, so maybe this one actually spun off the system we met. Then again, could be an act. Also, I can read that at least some parts of her OS is different, so its not just a dye job.

    You gonna tell her that her coding is sloppy?

    Not until I have decided it doesn't give me an edge for her not to know that I'm not.

    Right, good idea.


    By the way, even if you didn't blow up this time, you are still a complete moron.

    So I am sure Erika will tell me the very second she can do so without being seen dressing down a knight as a squire.

    You get anything new from the starlight at least?


    Not much.

    "Isako, darling, you didn't tell me your friend was so adorable!" Raz said, bowing grandly. "Allow me to formally make your acquaintance. Raz stone, bard extraordinaire, spreader of love and hope. I understand you are to be personally lauded for seeing this bevy of beauties safely through their recent travels." Raz bowed again, clearly enjoying the opportunity to make a scene. "Looking at this wonder of logarithmic cuteness, I suddenly understand how a friend of mine was utterly charmed in a similar situation not that long ago."

    "Friend goes a little bit to far." The DTG interjected snidely.

    "Shut up." Raz said, without missing a beat. "Anyway while it breaks my heart to think of even a moment away from the lovely vampire's embrace, she and hers do seem to wish to return to their doubtless drab and musically deficient homeland. I can only assume it is thus because I am not there of course. I had hoped that this thingy" The dark haired man indicated the still darkly glowing sigil that showed the world Crest on his hand, "Might prove to be the key but it seems life is not so simple. Or perhaps I am just lucky. I must be! What with two very different yet individually charming flowers dropping from the sky itself to be admired. Judging from your notes scattered around the place, I can only assume you also were investigating the situation. With that in mind, shall we join forces? Avalon is always looking for close relations with our inter-dimensional visitors."

    ...And you called me a lolicon...
    Quote Originally Posted by Bird of Hermes View Post
    The moment the opportunity arises for a pun, the one known as 'Taiga's Knight' will be there to deliver whether you like it or not.

  2. #862
    Imperial Princess Satehi's Avatar
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    Eva Ellet
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    World Designation: Xanadu
    ???


    Quote Originally Posted by Agatha
    "But they seem to be hanging on for now, it is not as if their story has come to it's end quite yet. Their existence is a valiant one, defiant amidst the void, I think it's rather remarkable myself."

    "Knowing is painful, but even painful knowledge is power. Now that you know, perhaps, one day, you might come across that place again on your own, or perhaps, you will notice a path to it that you would have been invisible to you before, a side road to a final destination that should be tred before the end, yes... Those that aren't known typically cannot be helped, so I think it is better to know than not to know... Or something along those lines."

    "Although, I do not think you need to feel bad, by being there today you did them quite the service indeed! That creature was quite bizarre... I do believe it would have done quite a lot more damage if you hadn't been there to stop it as early as you did, so... Be proud of that accomplishment!"

    "As a resident of Xanadu, you did your world proud!"
    !

    Upon hearing Agatha’s response, Eva…

    …averts her gaze, finding it hard to stare back at her.

    What Agatha said had a grain of truth to it.

    As unfortunate as the circumstances of that world were, they had continued onwards, doing their best even when faced with the near total devastation of their world. Even if fate was not always kind, there was a certain nobility, a kind of dignity, in the struggle against it. Perhaps it was even conceited, to feel pity.

    And to be on the verge of ending was not the end. No efforts are ever in vain, for He was said to always be watching, and will reward each to their own… it was entirely possible that there was hope for them, yet. While the idea that she might be a part of that was absurd to even consider as a possibility, there certainly could be someone out there who might be able to help them. The spreading of knowledge by itself could only be regarded as a good thing. And now that she knew, perhaps she could pass it on to someone who one day might be able to help…

    From that perspective, what she said right now might be a little shameful as a Tamer- a reminder that she was still very imperfect, with much to improve on both mentally and physically.

    Those thoughts certainly play a role in her current reaction, but the biggest factor…



    “I... suppose that’s one way to look at it…”

    … is the unexpected praise from Agatha.

    “I… didn’t do anything much. If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t even have been there, and it was your aid that made that particular victory possible…”

  3. #863
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Eva Ellet
    Velvet Room
    World Designation: Xanadu
    ???


    "Nothing much? Don't be silly!"

    The taller woman beams at you.

    "I'm the one who did little of note! No hopping around in the atmosphere, no dramatic punch explosions in the sky-! I was but a bystander, a member of the audience, and perhaps a bit of a magical amplifier, but just a bit of a magical amplifier! Didn't break any rules! Nope!"

    She is very insistent on this point, and looking around...

    It's almost like she's talking to the room itself?

    Or perhaps at the room itself?

    Either way, having made her point, the woman strides over to you, and...

    "Now, before I have to send you away to your home, there is one more thing I want to give you!"

    ...Continues to talk in a cheerful voice, raising her hand as she does so...

    Another gift?

    If she keeps this up, you'll start to feel bad about how she's practically drowning you in presents nowadays, but-

    "I have heard that people of your age appreciate this sort of thing in your world, so I shall give it a try!"

    -as she talks, she extends her hand out above your head, and...

    "Forgive me if I mess up the ritual, but I believe it had to do with applying light force here, along with some encouraging words, so-"

    ...Sets it down -lightly- on your head...

    Was she...

    Was she giving you a head pat?!

    "-you did very well! Have more faith in yourself! Always make sure to eat your veggies! Be sure to get at least eight hours of sleep a night-!"

    Yes...

    It certainly...

    Certainly seemed to be an attempt at one...

    Made in her own unique way-!
    Last edited by Airen; May 8th, 2020 at 05:49 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?



  4. #864
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Raz Stone
    New Tomobiki ~ Nagatani Academy
    Akarana Labs (Remnants)
    Friday, Afternoon


    ---Today was truly one of the most Tamer days you had had in awhile.

    Secret laboratories, visitors from another dimension, and now ominous people appearing out of nowhere, talking cryptically about things that will only ever make sense in retrospect, a couple of months from now when something cryptic and strange happens as a callback to this moment, yes...

    ---It's a typical Tamer day.

    This was not a lifestyle for those who could not handle the bizarre; as Tamers served as a 'bridge' to Demonkind, and thus a bridge to the 'supernatural,' they were the humans that were the most entrenched in the supernatural themselves-!

    Nevertheless...

    "...Logarithmic cuteness?"

    The strange girl tilts her head to the side at your words.

    ---Her existence is both like Burroughs, and unlike Burroughs.

    Where the silver-haired girl would have been excitedly jumping around and trying to impress others, this girl seems far more reserved, her body language is more professional, arms kept at her sides, voice even, composed, knowledgeable...

    Yes.

    This one is different... But the same...?

    A contradictory feeling that serves merely as "fuel," for the theory that she is some sort of subordinate unit for Burroughs, an off-shoot program, or at least something tentatively connected...

    "Strange... Is this form cute? It was not designed with that in mind, but if you say so, I suppose I must agree with your assessment and accept it as a compliment, ceaseless, unrepentant flatterer you may be, Mr.Stone."

    ---Yes.

    Quite bizarre indeed, especially because that feels like a bit of a knowing dig at you, still-!

    "Your assumption was correct however, I am investigating these affairs, although it seems we are both rather late to the party. A culprit has vanished to where no one can reach him, it is a sad state of affairs, but that seems to be how things are at the moment."

    She is quite verbose-!

    "But if you wish to join forces with me, very well."

    And surprisingly agreeable?!

    "I came here for more or less that purpose anyway, yes... I wish to speak with Lord Gabriel, if that is at all possible?"

    She smiles.

    It's a different smile from that of Burroughs, not hostile, but also not innocent, no...

    "And I think Ms. Nagatani should come along as well, if what she wants to do is get home, then staying cooped up inside of this mansion is not the way."

    ...this person doesn't have Burrough's naivety and innocence at all...

    In that sense she is certainly older than the other A.I...

    "So let us go see the King, and make our existences known, hmm? I will accept whatever supernatural binds I must to prove I am not a threat..."

    _____

    ---A mysterious girl who appears near the end of a mysterious week.

    Leaving her own existence as a cryptic one, she appears boldly before humans and A.I alike...

    But while her existence is a strange one, the future is stranger still...

    But for now... She is the strangest thing, an A.I that exists as a human, and will, in one way or another...

    Make her way to her desired destination...

    Alongside those she had been looking after, goals known only to herself...

    Raz/DTG
    Zero Seal/Empty City
    END

    Next Time...

    "Death of the X-Cross/Future Lost"


    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. #865
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    ???
    ??? ~ Full Moon


    ---For someone so blatantly mysterious, the act of her listening to you speak was remarkable straightforward, her interest in your words clear. Her head was always turned to face your own -even as her pose remained otherwise still- and her reactions to your answers are...

    Animated.

    Yes.

    Animated is the best word-!

    When you speak of the progress of your chef hobby she nods enthusiastically before saying "the road to greatness never truly ends-!"

    When you speak of taking in shady people off the streets (a certain delinquent and a certain grandma vampire coming to mind) she lets out a "knew it," with a fist pump, followed by a "but your entire family is just as shady as me...?"

    A claim that she does not elaborate on, and one that you push from your mind as a hidden, innate truth that you do your best to ignore-!

    And when you bring up a certain Noriko and her -failed- attempts at finding some sort of romantic resolution in mind...

    "Yes. Big Sis Nori deserves someone good, don't let any losers through-!"

    She accepts it with a grim nod, encouraging your chosen method-!

    ---It's all done with an air of familiarity.

    Familiarity that shines through harder than the obvious air of mystery that surrounds the girl, and-

    "....... What about you? You doing okay?"
    -perhaps in response to that feeling, a question of your own emerges.

    A question suited for someone you know, but that was being used for someone you clearly did not know, yes...

    It is a bizarre feeling indeed...

    Even so, you felt you must, and so you do...

    "Myself?"

    She tilts her head a bit to the side at the question, eyes narrowing slightly in thought as if unsure of the answer.

    "I managed to sneak away from the palace for a time, so that was a success! My arm is completely healed now, my classes are almost finished, and I managed to make it back to Aoyama in time for the yearly festivities, so I suppose I am doing just fine."

    She smiles gently.

    Some of that is rather pedestrian, like her excitement for the upcoming but for some reason...

    A part of it also bothers you...

    "Oh! I also trained the rabbits to make more than one form of Rice Cake! I do believe that is something of a grand accomplishment on my part~"

    Rabbits...?

    Why was she giggling to herself at it...?
    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?



  6. #866
    Lost in the Elizabeths Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    ???
    ??? ~ Full Moon

    It was strange.

    Talking to this girl... was strange.

    His memories denied any connection to her, and there was nothing but hazy mist to greet Blaise... yet at the same time, she felt to be more than just an ethereal reflection of his COMP AI. Not only did she talk to him in that tone, like an old friend, someone familiar who spoke of things that were something only someone close to him and his family should have talked about... but also the way she looked at him, the way she addressed him... they were those of a friend.

    Not the mannerisms of a stranger.

    Just like Blaise himself.

    Instead of treating her like someone he didn't know... his body automatically regarded her as someone he knew and trusted.

    But there were no memories of her.

    Just empty silence.

    And while otherwise this sort of realization would have made Blaise ill at ease, fearful of the absurdity of it all... right now, underneath the full moon, sipping on this intoxicating drink with her... it felt just right.

    Like this was how things were meant to be.

    "... Heh."

    Blaise couldn't help but to chuckle slightly as he finished his own cup. The reason was rather simple too. The way she behaved, and how excited she got, it was all rather endearing. Far cry from the foul-mouthed COMP AI of his. To take such pleasure in the simple act of conversation, without it coming across as irritating or grating... honestly, Blaise had to admit that he liked it. That's why the infectious cheerful attitude that the girl had spread to him as well.

    "--- I see. That's good to hear," Blaise quietly responded, nodding to the girl. "As long as you're having fun, and ain't putting yourself in danger or over-exerting yourself... I suppose it's fine? Even if you were hurt somehow, if you can smile like that now, it should be all good. I mean... if I'm being completely honest here, that smile fits you much better than being all vague and cryptic. You should do that more."

    As usual, he delivered his opinion with blunt honesty.

    After all, he wasn't used to dressing up his words to make them sound fancy.

    Indeed, Blaise like the smiling girl, excitedly explaining about looking forward to festivities much more than the one who was being mysterious for the sake of it.

    Still, there was one more thing.

    One thing that caught Blaise's attention.

    "Rabbits...?"

    What was this? Rabbits making rice cakes? That certainly sounded fantastical, to the point of being ripped straight out of folklore. Of course, that wasn't anything surprising considering how the world was these days, but at the same time... the mental image was a bit bizarre. No, not just bizarre. There was something else there was bothering him. Something that he had hard time admitting to himself, but thanks to his honest personality, he also had to think it through so he could voice it.

    Rabbits.

    Making rice cakes.

    No, more than that, rabbits that had been trained to make more than one form of rice cake. The mental image that sprung to Blaise's mind was... quite something. A mental image of fluffy white rabbits, mallets in hand and wearing tiny aprons and chef's hats, all gathered around a tiny table where they were experimenting with new techniques. They would be making suggestions, trying out new batches, tasting the ones that had been made and discarding old recipes. At the same time, whenever they would hit a success, their little fluffy tails would wag and their soft legs would drum the floor in excitement. And at the end of the day, they would enjoy all of the fruits of their hard work by having a tiny rabbit party under the moonlight, singing, dancing and eating.

    That mental image was too much.

    It made something bubble up within Blaise that he would have never said if Kaguya was there.

    Thus, he lifted his eyes to the girl once again... though he couldn't help to give a quick glance to see if there really were no bunny ears on top of her head.

    "... that's kinda cute, isn't it?" Blaise asked, serious and honest.

  7. #867
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Hyakka Onjouji
    Aoyama Gakuen, Swimming Pool 4B
    4th Period Class, Phys Ed. Swim (Combined Class)
    Noon


    "Born in... A different sense?"

    Well, it was certainly a strange sort of claim to hear at the end, but the rest sort of made sense to the girl...

    In the modern day, things like amnesia could typically be treated via the use of magic... It wasn't always the case of course -medical magic was still an imperfect field after all- but the fact that you still had that sort of thing after all of this time seemed to indicate that whatever treatments they had tried had been more or less unsuccessful, of course...

    "Not sure what that means, but... At least you seem to adjusted pretty well regardless, even if you turn out to not be from here, or even close to here, Aoyama will remain your home!"

    This is true.

    She seems to feel the need to reiterate such a point, but even you could understand that easily.

    Aoyama was a welcoming place, the people that lived here had a special connection with each other that life in other places simply could not match; outsiders remained outside of their little 'circuit' for a time, but if you lived here for long enough the entire ward seemed to 'adopt' you. It was similar in nature to the small-town philosophy where everyone knew everyone else, but rather than by knowing the names of others it was more like...

    Everyone recognized everyone elses 'soul,' and thus everyone tended to watch out for everyone else here, albeit in their own unique ways...

    It was a hard to explain feeling even for you, but...

    'Aoyama Spirit' was certainly a thing, and this city had accepted you awhile ago...

    It's a simple expression from the Student Council President, but she seems satisfied with it regardless, thus-!

    "But don't let me dredge up any memories that are too hard to think about, swimming class is supposed to be fun~"

    With little warning, the taller girl leaps into the nearby -massive- pool, diving beneath the surface with a natural, instinctive grace, like a crimson dolphin that erupts back up after a moment of silence, laughing all the while, and accidentally spraying you with a bit of the water...

    It's... Pretty cold-!

    "So come on! First lesson of Kaori's spartan swimming class, jump in and see what you can do!"

    She opens her arms after swimming back ten or so feet, the motions not drawing too much attention from her classmates for now...

    "Try to swim to me, okay? Right into the president's -or big sis if you want to call me that- arms!"

    Making a lot of sudden assumptions, this one-!
    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. #868
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Logan Starbright
    Aoyama, Tokyo (F-Zero Course)
    ???


    ---A hurricane.

    That was what a serious Astra was like on the battlefield, a blurred motion of strikes and counterstrikes, a silver-flash of lightning as her otherworldly hair flows around her on the shattered remnants of what was once a racetrack, a staff of pure reiki crackling in her hands as she fends off the attacks of two different attackers with a smile.

    ---Yes.

    That is Astra alright, the 'adopted daughter' of the Commander of the Rothschild, shining in the scenario in which she is most familiar-!

    She's laughing to herself even as she talks to them with words you can't quite make out, even as the attacks from both sides are clearly pressuring her; there are remnant cuts and burns -some not so minor- all over her body, and yet like yourself the girl keeps going as an engine of motion, staff striking back at the massive fly to keep it's form at bay, even as her footwork seems to naturally avoid the punches and kicks of the bizarre silver demon from earlier...

    She never bothers to attack it back -unlike Beelzebub- although you're not sure why...

    All of her effort is going towards fighting defensively, parries and dodges mostly, although...

    Her movements are slowing a bit, likely a consequence of the extended effort that came with fighting off two demons that were by no means low-class, and-

    It's in that moment...

    That you slip into the flow of her attacks yourself, the blind spot that you can recognize that she won't be able to defend against in time-!

    “I’ll support you, Astra,” he says as he arrives at her side. “What’s the situation?”
    It's a casual twist of Amelia, that sends the blow of the silver-haired demon to the side even as it renders your arms numb...

    Because this situation is familiar, it is almost like part of the tension simply... disappears the moment you reach her side...

    It is not exactly normal for Rothschild Tamers to fight alongside each other after all, but if there was a 'duo' that could make it work, well...

    It would certainly be the two legendarily stubborn 'training buddies' of the Organization-!

    "They're pretty pissed about being summoned and controlled, think we're the ones that did it!"

    That's why Astra's answer too, is a remarkably casual one-!

    Because her friend returning to her side is an expected event, there's no need to be surprised about it, even if he comes roaring in to deflect the strike of what she can only assume is some form of Hollow Divine Spirit-!

    "I told them it wasn't us, but they didn't quite believe me-!"

    She laughs again, even as fire erupts over her Aura Blade, fire that covers her side of the battle as the two of you take positions back to back, her facing off with the giant fly, you with the Silver-Armored Demon...

    "Can't really blame them I guess, couldn't really point at anything other than the Tower, and well... It's gone now, and I don't know that much about it anyways!"

    She doesn't even know the name.

    Nothing really.

    In essence, she can only point fingers at some hypothetical nameless existence that could summon and control high-level demons, when the alternative explanation of "the Tamers somehow did it" is probably more believable to them-!

    "You might be a better negotiator though, any ideas?"

    She says it with a grin, then-

    As the silver-demon closes in on you with another haymaker, she...

    "Oh, and by the way, I'm pretty sure that one is conceptually invincible."

    Eh...?

    Eh?!
    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?



  9. #869
    地獄待ち Spinach's Avatar
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    Hyakka Onjouji
    Aoyama Gakuen, Swimming Pool 4B
    4th Period Class, Phys Ed. Swim (Combined Class)
    Noon


    “Awawawa…”

    A sudden shower. Cold and wet. Hyakka had come prepared for wet. This was the pool after all. But she hadn’t expected cold. On reflex both of her arms shot up to create a double barrier to protect her from any more droplets, but the splash was already over.

    "So come on! First lesson of Kaori's spartan swimming class, jump in and see what you can do! Try to swim to me, okay? Right into the president's -or big sis if you want to call me that- arms!"

    “Uwah… now that I’ve seen it… it looks kind of hard.” With a voice lacking confidence, Hyakka tiptoed to the edge of the pool. She leaned over the edge, and looked down at the water’s surface, then back up to Kaori who was further out in the water. “I-I’ll try!”

    That’s right. Heroes always rise up to challenges. Protecting the world is never easy. The path of justice is a hard one by nature! So looking at it that way, it’s not so scary to let that path get a little wet or cold. In this case, both.

    “Un!” Fists curled together, Hyakka nodded her head to psyche herself up. “Here…”

    She took a step back. Then another. Then a large leap.

    “I…”

    The girl with the snow-white hair dashed forward. The idea that there might be a ‘no running’ sign nearby for her, and her classmates’, safety never even passed through her mind. Picking up speed, Hyakka kicked off, emulating what she had seen her senpai do.

    A rush of air, crashing water, a sudden onset of cold, and the world became blue.

    Given her size, the splash left by her entry was hardly impressive. But like a rock, Hyakka sank… and sank…

    … and sank.

    Until she touched the very bottom of the pool. The entire way down, her eyes stayed open, staring upwards.

    “Blrghhbrlgbbllbg!” With a wide smile, she spoke in the language of the waves. “Blrghblg?”

    Her jewel-like red eyes watched the bubbles leave her mouth and float toward the surface. Hyakka tilted her head.

    “I thought so… but you really don’t know how to swim, Hana. You don’t even understand the idea of holding your breath, do you?”

    “Blrghrblghll!!”

    The sunken girl answered back, and the cool natured COMP sighed.

    “Hana… you can’t talk underwater. And even if you could, you need to stop trying. Just hold your breath for now.”

    “Blrhg!”

    The girl nodded enthusiastically, likely saying ‘right’ in response. Once again, the COMP sighed.

    “Just… leave this to me. It won’t quite be swimming, but…” the girl’s black wings sprung out into the water, spreading out behind her and forming together into two cohesive wings. “Well, as long as you reach the President, it’s fine.”

    Then, like giant black fins, the two wings ‘beat’ in the water, pushing the girl through the water. The ruby eyes of Hyakka beamed with awe as she cut through the cold, blue pool. A trail of bubbles following as she completely disregarded the order to hold her breath.

    Once again the surface of the water burst open as Hyakka rose from beneath the water, wings beating rhythmically to keep her afloat. Now ‘treading’ water directly in front of Kaori, the tiny girl grinned.

    “Did I do it right?”


  10. #870
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Ludwig Karlfeldt
    Depths of a Dream, Deeper Still
    ??? - Night




    ---Amidst the storm that is the Great Winter, a Calamity surges forth into the Reality of a Dream.

    A Power born from outside the Confines of a World, a Primal Force that served as the 'starting point' for what mankind would call the other elements.

    To call it the Ultimate may not be correct -humanity knows too little of the origin at this point- but it is certainly not a Normal Power either.

    Indeed.

    What surges forth from a boy's body is a power that threatens to melt the Reality of a Dream.

    A newfound Myth forged with an ancient might, Legend that devours other Legends.

    The World itself seems to scream in defiance as a gradient maelstrom makes it's existence known to those inside of a dream, a whirlwind of
    dazzling
    colorless
    force erupting amidst a storm of Endless Ice, a spell that replicated the conditions of the World during it's end in Norse Mythology, a winter that claims the lives of the Gods and all but two humans, a hunting ground in which anyone is easily slain, where the senses betray, where the cold chills one to their bones without them being aware of it, and where a Wolf perhaps feels most at home, but...

    There's a roaring sound, different from what that Divine Force would unleash from it's own jaws.

    It's the sound of a storm being devoured, of ice and snow being drawn into the maw of a magical vortex, a primal singularity, a power not borne from the owner of this dream, and thus a power that this world of ice and snow was not designed to withstand, one that causes the world to creak and shake and scream as two different magics come into conflict with one another...

    ---From the start, it is impossible for Unity's Embrace to devour this spell in it's entirety.

    It is simply too large. It would not be a mistake to say that this false world was -in and of itself- Fimbulwinter, and thus the power necessary to devour it in it's entirety would be the equivalent of the power necessary to destroy a World itself, a power that even the greatest of Demons and Tamers do not have in the Modern Day, but...

    ---Even so, because the opponent's ice magic does not bear a connection to the 'Almighty,' it can devour what it can reach; while it is a technique that produces it's best results by devouring other "burst magics" in their entirety, there is a certain use that can be found in the "assurance" of using it like this, in a space where your opponent's technique has no real way of avoiding your own, indeed...

    The winds around you seem to vanish, as everything that comes close to the Vortex is devoured by it, is assimilated by it, broken down into it's base parts as the Gradient Tornado seems to lose some of it's power, some of it's cohesion, and comes spiraling down atop the boy that had summoned it, and then...

    For a moment, everything goes quiet.

    The Fimbulwinter regains it's strength, the parts that had been consumed being replaced by that which had not, the consequence of an eternal storm that could not be truly defeated by any singular power, but-



    -A moment later, light explodes amidst that same storm.

    ---Truly, Lydia had been designed to be a Special COMP.

    She had to be, in order to handle the backlash of this particular ability.

    Her magical circuits become flooded, your own Reiki paths too, are filled to the brim with a power that had to go somewhere; indeed, rather than spinning one's power into a vortex that returns damage back to an opponent -as a certain colleague of yours does- Unity's Embrace is a power that turns your opponent's energy inwards, towards yourself to give birth to new power.

    ---There are certain dangers that come with this, but it is a powerful technique nonetheless, thus-

    ---It's like you're cloaked in an armor of ice, spiked and wild like a wolf's fur, eyes burning with a maelstrom of color that few will ever get close enough to see; ordinarily this would be a power that fundamentally rejects your existence, your essence as a person being weak to this sort of supernatural cold, but you don't feel a thing, after all...

    Using it through the essence of the Almighty, you are shielded from those sorts of ambient effects... At least for now.

    ---The storm holds little meaning to you now either, those gradient eyes see through it just fine; it's a consequence of taking it's power into yourself, attuning it to yourself, and running it through yourself, a certain immunity to the effects that had been truly hampering you up until now, yes...

    Unity's Armament Activation: Success

    Attained Form: Great Winter (3 Turns)
    -Elemental Affinity to Ice temporarily changed to Strong, sensory obfuscation by Fimbulwinter Spell has been nullified
    -Due to Ice being inherently counter to Ludwig's essence however, form duration has been decreased
    -Physical Stats (STR, AGI, END) increase by two ranks for the duration of the form

    Fenris Wolf (Form Attack): Physical/Magic Hybrid Blow. Considered to be Pierce+ for damage calculation purposes. A straightforward attack dealt with the concentrated magical energy of the Great Wolf, channeled through a physical attack to tear the target apart from the inside through a combination of pure brute force and parasitic ice. Can only be used once a turn.


    This was... Better...

    Full power hadn't been able to be attained for a number of reasons, but...

    You could probably make this work-!

    As for your taunt...

    ---The Divine Wolf turns to face you at godspeed, the sound of something deep roaring through the valley as sudden gale-force winds rip at your body as the Hollow God breathes in deeply... A few moments before it would have been enough to rip you off your feet and into it's mouth due to your weaker levels of strength -an outcome that might have been somewhat distressing- but as it is now, you manage to hold your ground and-

    -blue flames.

    That is what the substance that emerges from it's mouth like a beam looks like to you.

    An azure flames that burns cold, as a God angrily moves to swat down a fly that had been acting bizarre for some time now-!
    Last edited by Airen; May 12th, 2020 at 07:43 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?



  11. #871
    Ludwig Karlfeldt
    Depths of a Dream, Deeper Still
    ??? - Night


    This was to be a punishment.

    The power of Telepathy, borne to the Karlfeldt siblings out of necessity, is not one to be used lightly. Despite the ease of it, it shouldn't be used to pry and poke the minds of others for simple curiosity.

    Breaching the rather unusual mind of Alexia Wright has caused the boy to be trapped in this Reality of a Dream. A punishment dealt by the mentor of Adala Lagerkvist to temper Ludwig's usage of his gift.

    And yet, he had used his ability again and again during this dream, which ended up taking him from one dream to another.

    It's not like Ludwig is unwilling to reflect on his actions. Ludwig and Lydia are aware that they shouldn't go around poking people's minds, even if it is not done with ill intent. He understands that this 'punishment' has a secondary purpose. Bonding with Wright's ''uchenik'' under past's winter night, as well as to help her pupil out with other worries.

    However, this event could hardly be compared to actual punishment to the ESPer...

    Compared to the punishment of the Karlfeldt elders, meeting and chatting with a younger Adala, learning more about her as well as seeing a different side of her... clearly the secondary purpose behind this punishment game had more emphasis placed behind it.

    Yes, were this a punishment doled out by his elders or by Adala herself, Ludwig would not have rebelled.

    Alexia is but a stranger to him, even if she's certainly fascinating in her own ways. So in the event that Ludwig needed to choose between making himself as useful as he could be to fight alongside his legendary mentor or to follow the words of a stranger... it wouldn't be a tough choice.

    It is regrettable, however relying on and using his Telepathy was to be expected in this scenario.

    If Ludwig is supposed to fight with Legends and Gods, he could not permit himself to hold back. If he is to stand side by side with Adala, he will undoubtedly try his best not to fall short or stand in her way. And while the Karlfeldt's believe her power to be unfair, Ludwig only wishes to become reliable in her eyes. Someone to be trusted.

    It is a foolish to even think he would not be a hindrance to someone with her power, even if this was a younger version, but nevertheless he would aim to be useful to his mentor.

    ...He'd have to apologize to Alexia if he has the chance. It seems the road ahead is long indeed...

    Adala, as well as Fenrir and Loki. These three divine figures, who were part of the dreamscape Alexia prepared, were in a realm beyond that of normal Tamers.

    It's to be expected, even among Rothschild Tamers renowned for their devotion to attaining power, there aren't many who can easily stand against Gods.

    Ludwig knew he wasn't among these legendary figures, he knew that when he entered this new dream, he knew that when he walked alongside The Commander towards the Hollowing Gods, and he knew that when a wave of Almighty Magic severed the connection him and his sister so long ago now.

    To be a Rothschild Tamer, is to seek power. Ludwig is no exception to this. He knows there is much to be done before he can truly embrace the ideal the Karlfeldts wish to carve in this world.

    The power of Unity, a power born from a shared vision, hope, an altruistic aim or a cause for the common good. To become united is to give your all to something, or perhaps someone. Stand together as one, only then can humanity face all this new world has to offer. That is the power he has dedicated himself to.

    And now, this same power has created a unifying bond between Ludwig and Fenrir. The World in this dream screams out, unable to stop it as the Reality within it is becomes victim to the Almighty.

    The Great Winter that signals the culling of Gods transforms into layers and spikes of ice, congealing over Lydia's red robed form to supernaturally bolster the protection of the Heir of Unity, who has devoured parts of this legendary winter and made it his own.

    A Legend that devours other Legends.

    ---Yes, perhaps with power like this, he might just be able to match the Divine Wolf.

    Still, he had wished Adala would stand alongside him, fighting united against a single enemy. But perhaps it's better this way. Her absence is noted quickly, but there is little he can do about it now.

    After all... a God had started to listen to the words of a mere 'worm'. It's great jaws opening and inhaling, creating an air current that would've swallowed the Tamer if it had happened earlier...

    ...But by now, it was too late for that. Ludwig stands strong against these winds, unfazed.


    Lydia, how are you holding up?

    Something like this, HA! This is nothing, I was made for this remember. Now go and haunt this God's dream, my Godslayer~.

    Please don't call me that...


    The stoic expression returns to him, as if to spite the efforts of the Great Wolf God.

    The gradient eyes look through the storm towards the chained Fenrir, whose mouth has begun to form blue flames.

    Meeting that resolve head on, the youth speaks.

    "Come then, Divine Wolf. No more petty tricks and illusions. Face me like a true hunter should."

    Ludwig opens his stance, stretching out his arms...

    ”From one Devourer to another, let's see what you're truly made of.”

    ...and disappears in the storm.

    "Tonight, you can hunt, roar and fight to your hearts content."

    The winter's icy wrath no longer hampers the boy.

    The blue beam soars through the blizzard. For a few moments nothing happens... until next to the Great Wolf God the boy reappears.

    His newfound speed, strength and vitality aid him in this surprise attack, launching his Divinely fueled fist close to the side of the chained Great Wolf God, the blue flames still lingering in its mighty maw.





    "I'll give you a dream worth remembering."


    The divine strike comes flying out, faster and more powerful than the Tamer could muster before. An attack filled with the magic that once belonged to Fenrir, now turned against it's owner.

    The power and speed of this new form won't last long, and the element of surprise is no longer with the Rothschild Tamer.

    Even so, his expression is serenely calm, after all...

    His belief in his mentor is unshaken.

    Wise Up!
    New Stats:
    Strength C
    Vitality S+
    Agility A
    Sense A
    Resistance A

    Great Winter Form(Turn 1 of 3)

    -Elemental Affinity to Ice temporarily changed to Strong, sensory obfuscation by Fimbulwinter Spell has been nullified
    -Physical Stats (STR, AGI, END) increase by two ranks for the duration of the form

    Fenris Wolf (Form Attack): Physical/Magic Hybrid Blow. Considered to be Pierce+ for damage calculation purposes. A straightforward attack dealt with the concentrated magical energy of the Great Wolf, channeled through a physical attack to tear the target apart from the inside through a combination of pure brute force and parasitic ice. Can only be used once a turn.

    Last edited by Zurvan; May 26th, 2020 at 06:46 PM.

  12. #872
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Amamiya Sho
    Junes ~ Aoyama
    ??? - Noon


    "That's right, hee-ho! Let the quiz show begin-!"

    ---In the end, even Jack joins in on the merciless string of rapid-fire attacks.

    It's an absurd scheme that is designed to be absurd, designed to be so out of left field that there is no possible way for your opponent to acclimate themselves to the sudden twist in logic you have used to rope them into a game where their loss is the only possible outcome. Indeed, it is so absurd a sudden twist that even Jack -a notorious follower of insane troll logic in his own right- seems to take a bit to really catch onto what's happening here, but when he does...

    When he does...

    ---He somehow manifests a top-hat and expensive (?) suit out of nowhere as he leaps up onto your shoulder without asking-!

    While Jack was somewhat of a prankster, and definitely a Demon that caused some problems for his contractor due to his behavior, there is no question that he would take a bullet for the girl if it came down it. While somewhat weak on a physical and magical sense, the demon's explosive personality and trickster nature hide a mind that is frighteningly intelligent when it wants to be, and in that regard, he is normally Nadia's protector from the more 'shady' parts of the world, parts of the world that the girl will normally disregard until she is forced to confront them...

    Yes.

    She is certainly too kind in a sense, and thus others strike for her-!

    Even if the stranger is potentially innocent, that circumstance does not matter-!

    She approached in a shady manner, and thus will be cut down as all shadows must when confronted by a light-!

    "Question #1: What is the Boss's favorite color? Hee-ho-!"

    Of course, Jack's approach to things initially comes across as bizarre, because such a question can only be called "easy." The thing that the woman likely didn't know was Nadia's exploits as a racer, thus, going after more personal information comes across as strange and even pointless, but-

    "Red."

    "Correct! Hee-ho! Question #2: How old is the Boss?"

    "17."

    -eventually you realize...

    That's the point.

    He is judging how much this stalker already knows, so as to estimate how long this has been going on, or rather, how much of a stalker this girl might actually be... Of course, as time goes on and the questions continue, it becomes clear that the girl is a bit more competent than she lets on, or rather...

    ---Her COMP A.I must be pretty good at information gathering, considering the light whirring sound you can hear coming from her jacket, tell-tale sound of a Plume-Based System doing something... It's not being straining itself particularly hard of course -information gathering was still just information gathering after all- but because the world constantly takes underhanded means to defeat you, you are sensitive to even small changes in your environment, yes...

    She's likely being assisted by her Device when it comes to Nadia's history as a racer, so you could probably call her out for breaking the rules already if you were clever about it, but-

    ---She seems to know quite a bit about Nadia on her own.

    Should you call her out for -probably cheating- now, and probably drive her off, or...

    Is there something you can ask that she might answer reflexively, on her own, that might reveal what she had been up to?

    Or perhaps...

    Is there someone other than the girl herself you can ask...?
    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?



  13. #873
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Hyakka Onjouji
    Aoyama Gakuen, Swimming Pool 4B
    4th Period Class, Phys Ed. Swim (Combined Class)
    Noon


    "---Right to the bottom huh?"

    An observation tinged with a hint of obvious worry.

    Indeed, while the name "Kaori's Spartan Swimming Class" hinted at a certain lack of mercy in the girl's attitude towards things, there's still a sound like an audible sweatdrop as the student council president watches you sink to the bottom of the pool without resistance.

    ---There is normally more struggling than this, flailing arms and legs, but nope...

    You had sank right to the bottom.

    Almost as if the concept of swimming was one lost to you, which was indeed the case, but thankfully, just as the girl is preparing to shatter her spartan habit of -almost literally- just pushing people in to make them learn by doing...

    You emerge from the water smiling -passing by a Nakahara senpai that seems to be meditating underwater for some reason- unaware of the brief burst of mental panic that had entered the mind of a certain student council president, of course...

    ---This is not quite what she meant by swimming.

    On a purely technical level, it could maybe be called "swimming" if you squinted pretty hard, but...

    "...Technically."

    She chuckles.

    Skin shining with the clear water of the pool, muscles firm but not bulky, the figure of the Council President certainly does stand out from the others... It's like the figure of an idol amongst the normal populace, a crimson-clad goddess of the pool who-

    "But you should hold your breath when you go under, talking underwater isn't a great plan!"

    -gently grabs your arms to hold your bobbing self still-!

    "And instead of wings... Try using your arms and legs to make the motion instead!"

    It's a cheerful lecture, so much so that it doesn't really feel like a lecture at all-!

    "You never know when you might get separated from your COMP after all, so next attempt, let's try using just your body, okay? Preparing for worst case scenarios, and training one's body to a razor point, that is the Kaori Ikushima way!"

    She smiles, energy practically radiating off of her like she was some sort of miniature sun, and-

    "So drop the wings and flail a bit, if you get scared just grab ahold of me, okay? I won't sink. Even if the pool's whirlpool function turns on-!"

    -truly knight-like, in a sense.

    Even if some of those ending words were a bit... Worrying...
    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. #874
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    ???
    ??? ~ Full Moon


    "Cute?"

    An elegant voice that nevertheless seems to question your choice of words.

    Yes.

    Having maintained the aura of a princess for the majority of this conversation, the apparent princess of the moon had simply let out a light laugh at your declaration that she should be more upfront and honest, more of a person than whatever ominous supernatural entity she was clearly making some effort towards being...

    And at first, those words seem to have little effect beyond that, indeed, she seems to find some sort of satisfaction in being cryptic after all (the fact that it was so distressingly common with people that have delved deep into the supernatural seems to imply they get something out of it) but...

    "No, I wouldn't say it's cute."

    She says that with a decisive shake of her head, royalty passing down judgement on a particular topic. It's a bit disheartening in a sense, the sort of answer that kind of breaks the atmosphere around here, when-

    "It's adorable!"

    -she explodes with energy.

    Not just metaphorically, literally too!

    Because Spirit Power -Reiki- is intimately connected to one's emotions, it is not unheard of for people to start giving off 'waves' when they're excited, but the girl literally lighting up with the silver light of the moon as she clasps her hands together and squeals excitedly in a way that's almost a high-school girl cliche...

    It's...

    It's certainly something-!

    You have to put forth some actual effort to not be knocked over by it!

    "I still had my camera from the last time I was here in Aoyama, so I took pictures of them!"

    ---It's pride.

    ---It's cheer.

    ---It's cheerful pride.

    ---She's so unashamedly proud of these rabbits!

    Reaching behind her as she speaks, she withdraws what seems to be a scrapbook...

    Where had she been keeping it?

    Considering all the Reiki flowing around, she might have just summoned the thing...

    "Do you want to see the pictures? They can all do the human form now too! Bunny ears! Bunny ears!"

    And again...

    That bizarre feeling of familiarity that can only be met with emptiness...

    Now she was acting like...

    You should know the rabbits...
    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?



  15. #875
    地獄待ち Spinach's Avatar
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    Hyakka Onjouji
    Aoyama Gakuen, Swimming Pool 4B
    4th Period Class, Phys Ed. Swim (Combined Class)
    Noon


    The tiny girl emerged from the depths. Turning wings into fins, she overcame the trial of ‘swimming’ with her trusted ally and partner. A miraculous first attempt that ended in success. That was supposed to be the story, but…

    “Tch.” A click of the tongue followed by a cold voice. “As if I would ever let Hyakka be taken away from me.”

    “Ts-Tsubaki, it’s okay! I’ll do it, let me try. Kaori-senpai is right, I should learn to do it myself, right?” The white-haired girl with the eyes of untarnished crimson spoke up in quick defense of her upperclassman. “It’s training for me, just like you always wanted.”

    “…”

    The COMP answered in a silted silence. Its heart and mind were far cooler than any pool’s waters, but when it came to Hyakka, Camelia could never give her the ‘spartan’ treatment. It could be said that the AI coddled the girl, and confronting that, it found itself unsure of how to respond.

    “Don’t worry, Tsubaki. I can do it!”

    The small girl tried to strike a pose full of confidence, but ultimately flailed and accomplished nothing in the deeper waters.

    “… Fine, but just remember that it’s pointless. I’ll always be there for Hyakka.” Indignantly, the AI declared the futility of the exercise even as it relented. “Those hypotheticals where we get separated are beyond improbable, they’re impossible. Don’t forget it.”

    The wings disappeared, like a mirage cast by the light refracting under the water, they shimmered and dispersed.

    “Alright, time to- brlrhghrghlg!” The instant her support disappeared, the girl sank without a hint of resistance. But not only was she lacking in resistance, but from how calmly she slowly went under, sinking deeper, it was obvious that she wasn’t abundant in caution or concern either. “… blrgh!”

    Seemingly remembering that she had been told not to talk underwater, the spray of bubbles came to a halt.

    Red eyes turned about under the water, piercing the blue. Hyakka thought about the instructions Kaori had given her. The way the older girl moved when she swam. The sight of other classmates in the pool swimming enhanced her understanding as her ruby eyes witnessed their forms and strokes.

    Completely ignorant to the concept of drowning, Hyakka took her time thinking it all through. Even as a strange sensation began to build in her lungs, she ignored it. After all, it was her first time swimming or holding her breath. It was her first time feeling that limit pushed. Though the meaning wasn’t understood entirely, what she did understand…

    Her arms reached out together and split, cleaving the water. Her feet paddled up and down. It was awkward. It was new. But it was movement. There was light above, still far enough away that she felt like she had to work for it, but the surface was getting closer.

    This was swimming.

    What Hyakka Onjouji understood was the will to push her limits.

    Normally, someone unable to swim would panic and make no progress after being thrown into the water. Ignorance alone fueled her growth. Hyakka knew too little to have a reason to panic. Even as her lungs felt like they might catch fire, she calmly continued performing her beginner stroke. With every repetition it got faster. Movements she was unsure of were discarded and her strokes became faster, wider. The final cog, the final piece of the puzzle, was timing. Putting together the kicking of her feet with her stroke, she achieved a single movement that might be seen as actual swimming.

    The long white hair slowly emerged from the water.

    With a deep inhale.

    “Wow!” Wide eyes looked around the pool, then to the other girl. “Swimming is so interesting! I’m going to do it again! I want to go faster this time! Please give me any addi- blrghgblrgblr!”

    Halfway into her sentence, Hyakka disappeared under the water again. This time, rather than merely sinking, she turned her whole body upside down, and began to swim her way down to the bottom.

    “…”

    All while her partner watched in silence, not interrupting to tell the girl that she forgot to take a deep breath before going under.


  16. #876
    Lost in the Elizabeths Verg Avesta's Avatar
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    Blaise Pendragon
    ???
    ??? ~ Full Moon

    Quote Originally Posted by ???
    "Do you want to see the pictures? They can all do the human form now too! Bunny ears! Bunny ears!"
    Blaise could only blink at this sudden change in demeanor.

    Was this really the same graceful girl that had graced him with her presence just before? Who had spoken of such mysterious things while offering him sake in a manner as if a trained princess? This... this squeeing school girl who was currently babbling about the adorableness of her pets? Blaise had, of course, meant it when he said that she should be more upfront and honest, but this sort of radical change he hadn't expected...

    ... Though he couldn't say he disliked it.

    If anything, seeing her that excited made him almost think:

    Ah, so she is human-like too.

    And it was that realization that made him drop some of the defenses he had had so far. The understanding that whoever this mysterious, regal girl was, she was just as "normal" as anyone else when it came to something like this. He couldn't really treat her as any vague and obscure creature of yore now that he had seen this excitement and this adorable pride.

    Besides... Blaise had to admit, he was curious of seeing these pictures.

    N-not just because of bunny ears or cute rabbits in general, but because this odd feeling... odd feeling that he should know these animals.

    And that was why...

    "A'ight. Show me. I wanna see," Blaise said while a smile rose to his lips and he scooted closer so he could see the scrapbook better. "If they're that adorable, I don't wanna be left out."

    There were worse ways to pass the night under a moonlight than looking at someone's pet-pictures.

    And the girl herself... she wasn't unpleasant company either.

    That sense of bubbling cheer was almost infectious, in a way, after all.

  17. #877
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Hyakka Onjouji
    Aoyama Gakuen, Swimming Pool 4B
    4th Period Class, Phys Ed. Swim (Combined Class)
    Noon


    ---Slowly, you made your way back towards the bottom of the pool.

    It was surprisingly deep for a school pool, the sort of deep where light eventually begins to grow dim, darker, as the sun above fails to illuminate it properly through the drifting clouds; there's a bizarre sensation of burning in your lungs, but all the same, as the concept of 'drowning' is a foreign one to the existence called "Hyakka Onjouji" there is no sense of panic or fear inside of you, no...

    It's a simple calm.

    The light enjoyment of being embraced by clear blue water...

    It's a comforting feeling...

    A cold pressure from all sides, one that dulls sound and light, and yet seems to make the world shine all the more clearly in it's depths...

    As if the movements of those under water were simply more interesting than the movements of those above; of course such things might be natural for someone like you, to whom the world maintained an air of wondrous mystery, where each new day brought a satisfying feeling of 'newness' into the world, surprise and joy from things that you could perhaps have never expected, and...

    Down...

    Down...

    Down...

    Heading into the depths of the water's embrace, you once again find the figure of Nakahara-senpai in a strange pose beneath the waves.

    ---His legs are crossed, and he's seemingly sitting along the bottom of the pool without struggling at all... Of course he's not asleep or anything like that, his eyes flutter slightly when he feels you approach, and the eyes that open to find his observer are sharp enough, a piercing blue even amidst the blue of the school pool, and after a few moments, time in which the burning feeling in your chest slowly becomes more and more prominent...

    The muscled youth tilts his head slightly to the side, crimson scarf flowing in the water around him, and...

    "...Are you... Using magic to breathe?"

    ...Speaks clearly, youthful voice surprisingly deep beneath the waves.

    "An auto skill?"

    Quite clearly.

    Very different from you...

    "You're not just... Holding your breath right?"

    And with a hint of the worry that you yourself did not feel...
    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. #878
    地獄待ち Spinach's Avatar
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    Hyakka Onjouji
    Aoyama Gakuen, Swimming Pool 4B
    4th Period Class, Phys Ed. Swim (Combined Class)
    Noon


    Beneath the water’s surface is a different world. That was today’s most obvious lesson for Hyakka. A strange world it was. The rules of gravity that she was familiar with, both on land and in the sky, were different down here. Concepts such as buoyancy were not something she knew of, even if intuitively, she began to understand how to control floating and sinking.

    Aside from that, what most intrigued the girl was the way the world felt. On all sides she was always being held by the water, enveloped completely. Over time its cold gave way to an unexpected warmth. The longer she stayed in the warmer she felt.

    Not only that, but light and color were different underwater. It was no surprise that everything tinted blue, but she had never thought about the light above coming into the pool. It ebbed and flowed with the surface of the pool, always feeling the aftereffects of distant movements of other classmates.

    In that blue she spotted a red fabric coiling around someone she recognized, and began to swim toward him.

    "...Are you... Using magic to breathe?"

    Most fascinating of all, sound. It was all different. Everything felt mysteriously louder, and yet, muffled. As though the volume of the world had been amped up, but a pillow was pressed against her ears to dampen the vibrations that sound was made up of.

    "An auto skill?”

    No.
    Blrghbl.
    ” A stream of bubbles answered back. “
    Senpai, how are you talking underwater? Anything I say just comes out as bubbles…
    Blrghblblrghbl? Blrghbrlghrlbrghlblrghblrghbl…


    “You're not just... Holding your breath right?"

    Hyakka tilted her head. The motion caused her snow-white hair to follow in slow motion, creating a flowing cloak behind her. Eyes turning quizzical, feeling lost in what Nakahara-senpai was asking, she responded.

    What?
    Blrhghbl?


  19. #879
    Inspired Pervert hero's Avatar
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    Amamiya Sho
    Junes ~ Aoyama
    ??? - Noon



    Cheating? No, I wouldn't say that's the case. I did offer the girl quite a few ways to request assistance from a third party, but I never said she wasn't allowed to use her COMP to find the answers. I might be playing the role of the villain here, but I'll make an effort to keep this showdown somewhat honorable, if only to make her defeat all the more impactful. Indeed, her efforts have only served to confirm my suspicions and also save me a little bit of time. After all, the location of her COMP is all I ever needed. The real question is how to proceed from here on out. As I witness Jack present 'Saria' with a barrage of questions that are both extremely simple and, at the same time, with a clear purpose in mind, I ponder my options. By this point, I am more convinced than ever that this person is more than she lets on, most likely an individual with about the same level as a tamer, if not a tamer herself. Normally, I wouldn't spare a moment thinking about it: I would aim to attack and restrain her as soon as possible. I can always ask questions and clear misunderstandings later.

    But, for Amamiya Sho, doing such things in the open is just not allowed.

    This is Junes, a place that has become a target for residents and tourists alike. A lot of people gather here daily to do their shopping, and you can see an audience mixes members from all ages and genres. To put it in a few words, it's the kind of place where someone like me, who immediately stands out as someone who society rejects, can get punished easily after acting recklessly. Hell, I bet that coming here equipped with a couple of toy weapons would earn me a ticket straight to the police station, so...

    A hero gets to be noisy, but a villain has to rely on stealth. Or, at the very least, has to keep an ace under his sleeve.

    In this case...

    "Magnificent!" I pretend to praise her from the bottom of my heart, in order to keep the performance alive for a little bit longer. "You have moved up the stairs step by step, facing numerous and harsh trials, and now you stand here, meters away from reaching the top of the summit and claiming your price. But alas, this game is as cruel as life allows, and a mistake here will make you fall all the way back to the start. Yes, this is it... Contender Saria, here it is... Your final question..."

    While coming up with a plan, several ideas sprung to mind, led by an endless stream of questions. Should I go for the 'potential spy' I can see with my own two eyes or should I target the A.I. that's hiding under her wings, doing the work for her? In the end, it's just a matter of perspective. I ultimately do not know who I am dealing with, but given the reactions I've seen before and during Jack's interrogation, I can tell that my 'enemy' is putting a lot more at stake than I am throughout this cold battle. Saria and her A.I. could have easily escaped this situation by getting a question wrong. It's natural for a girl to not want to be covered in slime, I get it, but a strong agent would be able to put their mission above that. There is nothing to gain from answering my question right, so this has to be a personal matter. Even though Nadia claims not to know this person, a link between the two of them is evident, even if it's one-sided.

    Speaking metaphorically...

    My question would then be a 'bullet' that has to be dodged by them no matter what. Meanwhile, I cannot care less whether this 'first shot' hits or misses. That's the difference between us. That's the advantage I'll use to end this game once and for all-!

    "Through her career Nadia Starr had to change her engine a number of times, given her... Daring way of driving. On one occassion, one of this engine's serial numbers was showcased to the world by the Media... Can you recall what this number was...?!"


    Naturally, I've lied.

    There is no way even a hardcore fan can answer this question. I am not even sure myself if such a thing ever happened and, honestly, she could just throw a random number and I would never be able to tell whether she answered correctly or not. But this is the bridge that will lead me to victory. An engine serial number is something a COMP A.I. might be able to find out. It might take a little bit of effort, but if its in the records, the search should be simple enough. But, if the serial number I want is not that of a specific car, but rather 'one that's been broadcast on television', the process becomes a tad more complicated, as a lot of other information is added onto the mix.

    In order to answer correctly, that COMP A.I. will really need to put some serious work into it.

    And that's when...!

    "KIOKA DO IT NOW---!!"


    That's when I blow my own cover and fire a 'second shot' aimed straight at the target--!

    Hacking...

    My COMP might not specialize in such thing, but it is nevertheless a task any A.I. can perform. The two requisites, knowing the target's location and being within range, have already been met. Even if the enemy's A.I. is better suited for it than my own, it matters not, it will take some effort to get out of this one. In that window of time...

    In that window of time, I can act freely...-!

    "SLIME C---!!"


    This is the true nature of television games.

    You a goo bath whether you want it or not.

    Channelling custom magic through my own power, I turn my companion into a living octopus, tentacles sprouting forward in the blink of an eye, aiming straight at Saria's exposed limbs.

    "So what is it...?! Rose Cross... Rothschild... Or is it KotR...?!"

    Negotiations broken apart, I take the same reckless approach I wouldn't advice anyone to follow, my intent to resolve this situation as soon as possible...!

    ... Before I get arrested...!
    Last edited by hero; May 17th, 2020 at 04:08 PM.
    [18:30] RacingeR: Max S.Link with hero is when you promise your daughter to him
    [18:31] RacingeR: Which means Airen and me are the only ones that maxed it (I promised Spin to him, and Spin is my daughter)
    [18:32] hero: oh shit
    [18:32] hero: spincess get
    [18:32] hero: suck it fuckers

  20. #880
    The Time-Governing Twelve Covenants Airen's Avatar
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    Amamiya Sho
    Junes ~ Aoyama
    ??? - Noon


    ---In the end, negotiations fall apart quite fast.

    "Peace was never an option, hee-ho!"

    Suddenly attacking to restrain your opponent out of nowhere, tentacles of slime erupting in the middle of something she had -naively- treated like an actual game show, it seems that the role of teacher in this instance is two who knew they would be eventually embracing the villainous, straightforward path right from the start-!

    Yes!

    Jack attacks the heartbeat after you do, a villainous cackle erupting from the snowman as tendrils of ice erupt out from it to add onto the certain misery of a certain shady Tamer, yes...

    "Huh-?"

    The girl makes a genuinely confused sound, moments before she meets her fate.

    She truly must have been a Tamer, her reflexes before she is caught reflect it; an energy blade in the shape of a massive greatsword appears in her hands in a flash, body instinctively lashing out at the force that sought to close around her, but-

    "---?!"

    -to put it simply, it is not strong enough on it's own to cut the 'ropes.'

    The magic that has already started to ensnare her weakens the force she can put behind her blows, and thus the slime that might have been scattered and cut by her -somewhat considerable considering she almost manages to simply flex her way out of the hold- strength instead holds fast, properties of it's existence ensuring that escape is not so simple as ordinary brute force-!

    "Huh? What? Why?!"

    Nadia, who had been suspicious of your sudden claim to be her manager, but also naturally curious, now seems to understand that something has gone wrong, and-

    "So what is it...?! Rose Cross... Rothschild... Or is it KotR...?!"
    -in the distance, footsteps start up rapidly.

    That's right, just as expected, the moment you had decided to act in such a blatant manner is the same moment in which wandering police hone in on the situation; Tamers are everywhere nowadays after all, so trouble like this -people brandishing spells at each other- is the sort that will always draw someone to you, like flies on honey, no question about it, so-!

    The answer!

    Find the answer now!

    Before you're both arrested, but-!

    "Shit..."

    As a pseudo-delinquent herself -even if a more innocent one- Nadia too understands the sound of approaching arrest, thus-

    "Freeze!"

    -she does the only thing she can to salvage the situation, namely...

    "Both of you!"


    ...She decides to arrest everyone herself.

    ---

    Amamiya Sho
    Junes ~ Aoyama
    Holding Room
    Friday - Evening


    ---Naturally, it is a bit awkward to sit like this in an anti-magic room.

    Sitting on the complete opposite side of the room from the girl you and Jack had ultimately bound into a frozen slime prison, the low hum of an outside Harmonizer Generator has shut down all supernatural functions of those inside this jail-cell esque room.

    Nadia had managed to do it in the end after all, making somewhat of a big, noisy scene out of arresting the three of you out in the lobby.

    A snap decision, one made to keep things from getting too out of control, because...

    At the very least...

    It let her handle the outcome...

    Still...

    It's rather awkward...

    Especially with the spy girl sulking on the other side of the room, doing her best to remove slime from her hair in a way that you know is futile, even in this sort of room...

    One needed to wait for it to dry.

    While it was fresh... It was more or less hopeless, still...

    While she seems to be sulking...

    "It was... Um... Rose Cross by the way... Saria Justice."

    She does seem to have some form of humor left in her...

    "Guess I'm happy she has good friends at least, that's a good thing."

    ...Yes.

    A link between her and Nadia certainly must exist...

    Those words more or less confirm it...
    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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