MacThorstenson

Inter-Era stories

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Hello everyone!

The official date for the start of the Era is set for Monday September 16th. People have until then to wrap up any posts in the main plot thread. During that time, you can also post any time skip scenes in this thread.

For those who are new to the RP, In between eras we have a thread that people use to write scenes about what their character did in the gap between eras. 

This is a thread that covers the stuff that has happened in the 6 months in between Eras Three and Four, anyone is welcome to post scenes about their characters. So have fun!

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This thread will continue to be used for any relevant story that takes place between eras.
For era 5 this is a little difficult to imagine but if anyone has any short scenes that they wanted to include before the e5 shift please post them here.

 

Edited by Voidus
Updated for new eras
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I'm gonna retcon Ailila to have ended up in the Alleyverse in bewteen Eras 

 

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So, mods, it'll still be ok to write between era scenes after monday, right?

Cause this doesn't make that quite clear

 

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Relevant backstory can always be added as long as it doesn't alter canon.
(Eg. if a character is still alive in era 4 then don't kill them during the timeskip)

 

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Alright, here are Lena, Althea and Mike. I simply don't get anything written for Zokora at the moment, what I had in mind doesnt work.

 

Fear raced through her body, her throat constricting while her feet hit the ground when she tried to flee. Flee. Althea ran as fast as she could, tried to lure them away, tried to do something. They were hurting them, and she was helpless, useless. They were killing and she could do nothing. Her legs burnt from running far and fast, her arms felt weak from wielding Brashen. Powerless she watched as the flames consumed them, listened to their screams, felt her own life slowly drip out of her.

She woke with a start, her hands shaking, her throat raw from screaming. Nightmares. They had returned after the invasion, had thrown her back to the place she’d been after the whole incident with Sephtis. For now she was mostly grateful, that Max was away, that he hadn’t heard her again. She knew he worried about her, knew that she needed time to recover, for the wounds to scab over. Tiredly she pushed herself up, her arms barely able to support her that much, but she grit her teeth, forced herself to stand up. It would be easy to inhale stormlight, to feel its fury and wrath, its endless power, but she’d used so much during the previous days, if she relied on it again, she would never recover sometime soon.

On shaking legs she made her way to the kitchen, glad that she arrived there without several breaks and fetched some cake. Healthy food was something she would worry about later. When she was good again. For now, chocolate cake was more than enough.

Sitting down while she started to eat the cake, she activated a device and started to read through her messages, replying now and then. The first calculations were there, how much it would cost them to repair the damages, to rebuilt what was destroyed. And at the same she opened another mail, that caught her eye immediately. Their losses. The list was long, so many dead, so many injured for life. She looked it through, ordered her secretary to come up with a plan how to support their families and then turned the device off again, unable to look at it any longer. She had failed. Failed in a way she hadn’t done before, and she hopefully would never do again.

She had one job, one single job, and she hadn’t even been able to protect her members, not talking about the innocents in the city. The thought hurt, hurt more than her current condition ever would. Trying. She had to stop trying and start doing. She finished her cake, then stood up and walked outside, sat down in their garden. It was mostly grass, with a few plants here and there, that didn’t need much care – and a sunflower. She’d ordered it, had it brought to her place because she wanted, needed something alive, something bright amidst the dark mess, that were her thoughts. She looked at the plant, sat there without moving, watched how it slowly moved its head, followed the light of the sun.

Her face softened, when she looked into the future, at the plans she had made. Camping with Tena, and a birthday vacation with Max. To Iri. The next six months would be good. They would help. She needed time, her guild needed time. To recover, to heal, to get rid of the nightmares again. To be able to walk without feeling like falling. And then, then she could face whatever the future would throw her way.

=============================

Mike looked down at the invitation, then towards the wall and the gates looming in the distance. Oasis City. It was the first time, that he returned here after the invasion. He had left all of it for a while, had needed to get out. Fox was there, waiting, snatching control from him now and then, but for now Squid, and surprisingly Squirrel kept him in check. Mike slowly walked towards the city, could hear the sounds of the harbor, the shouting, saw the people in front of the gates. A normal day. But he wished it wasn’t. Wished for a reason to not return, to turn around and walk away forever. Going back, back to his friends. Seom, Wes. Hopefully they would be there as well. The thought to go back to humans, back to those caring about him rested heavily on his shoulders. He had been glad over the opportunity to leave and work somewhere else, to quietly do his job, without anything world changing happening. Tiredly he closed his eyes, then took another step, and another step. He walked towards Oasis, because he had to, because he had been invited. He had to stop hiding for a night, only for a night, then he would leave again. Back to his assignment, back away from people. Sharp claws cut his palms open, blood dripped on his pants, but he didn’t care. As long as it only was claws, he was fine. Mike walked, walked towards the city, because it was his duty, because he had nothing left but duty.

==========================================

Lena smiled when she watched woman trash on the ground. She’d known how the poison would act, but she’d decided to poison her anyway. She needed to think. And thinking was easier with a good poisoning. Stretching she twirled her pen around in her fingers and smiled, then took some more notes. She had spend the last months at the forge, helped Alask to rebuild the place. They had gone out hunting now and then and she liked Shez more and more. He was nice. Mart seemed better now that he had a real home again, and she was relieved and happy at her chance to watch him strive. Somehow everything had worked out at one point, and while she suspected that Alask knew, that she ignored his rules, she didn’t care as long as he kept quiet. She kept her corpses out of sight, acted quietly, and he didn’t mention them. It was a good agreement, one she enjoyed a lot.

Her smile widened when she remembered the last nights, the woman she had met again. That change was even better. It had been years, since she had a partner, that wanted the same. Some fun, some hours to forget, some time together. Tapping against her book she laughed loudly, then turned around, left the woman behind. She would most likely survive, Lena doubted that she’d gotten the amount of poison wrong. For now, she had an appointment at the harbor.

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Shae read, occasionally looking around the room he was in. He didn't know where he was, or why the people who'd taken him were so set on having him do this, but... every time he read another example in this terrible book, he felt sicker and sicker. He was learning an insane amount about how the soul worked in a person, what points went where- it was so much more than he used to know, and it gave him insights into Soulstamps he'd never have had before, but... Hemalurgy made him sick. He didn't puke because he'd learned how to never puke- if he hadn't he'd have died before ever making it to the alleys. Every now and then he wrote something down in a small journal he had, and slowly those notes grew. The knowledge made him sick, but he was used  to obeying kidnappers... or at least playing along.
*-------*
He had no idea how long he'd been in this place, with it's oddly lenient owners. All he knew was that he knew more about Hemalurgy than he'd ever want too. He knew so many ways to spike various places to achieve various effects... He shuddered, glancing around the small room- the small stacks of books here and there, all on hemalurgy, all of it more-or-less memorized in his subconscious. He could recall it if he tried, which is why he had his notebooks for reference. He was hugging the four notebooks he'd filled, and the contents inside... It all made him want to hide somewhere and forget everything. That someone had had too experiment to find this all out... so many dead and so many permanently disfigured... this single magical system was responsible for more torture, death, and pain than any other single thing he'd ever heard of or read about. Especially in the alleys... from what he'd been able to gather, some of the books even hinted that the world was spiked into being. The idea left him cold, and feeling vaguely empty- which was worse than being sickened by the idea. He mentally swore he'd never hurt someone with this knowledge... not if he could help it. He didn't want to make this already despicable art any more wide-spread. The only reason he'd try and help his kidnappers was to avoid his own death, and... He still couldn't forget Dan. He was terrified that they'd hurt Dan, since he knew that the man wouldn't have willing left him alone unless both of their lives were in serious danger; which meant Dan might still be in danger. He was very, very worried about him, more-so than he was about himself if he was being honest. He looked at the door, expecting his captors to come and get him soon- surely they would let him do what they wanted and then send him home... At this point, he just wanted to go home...

@Blessing of Potency

@AonEne

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Malu threw his hood up as he returned to Roshar, breathing in the post-highstorm air. It was a feeling he'd missed for far too long, but there wasn't time to enjoy it fully yet. He had work to do, and the sun would be setting before too long, and there wasn't time enough to waste. 

Hours later, he stumbled from the valley's hold into darkness, scratched and breathing heavily, mopping sweat from his forehead with the cuff of his cloak. "Katki, what do you think she meant?"

The spren shone on the edge of his vision. "I have no idea. Guess we'll find out soon enough, though. An hour after sunrise here, yes?"

"That's what she said. I don't think the Nightwatcher would lie about this of all things. Other things, sure, but not this. I wonder how it'll affect you."

"Affect me?" Katki asked, worried. "I don't think it will...will it?"

"Let's find out. An hour after sunrise here. We'll stay here for a time to explore the details. But for now, I need to sleep," he said, settling into a bedroll with the Nightwatcher's warning couplet running through his head: One into two / but two can never be one. "What does it mean indeed," he muttered, drifting off. 

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Yeah that's all I'm gonna do. He's the only one of my characters that did anything interesting in the gap, but I also don't feel like going into too much detail over it.

 

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I don’t really have much for Deteca, just tidying loose ends, I guess. I do have one more thing to put in here that I haven’t written yet, and will either post or edit in when I do. 

Deteca stared at the paper tiredly, blinking to ward away the demon of sleep that really wanted to drag her down with it. It was late at night, a day after the attack on the city and the subsequent defeat of Ajax and his forces. She was in her room in TUBA’s main base, grateful that the defenses had held up during the mob of Investiture and insanity. The desk before her was strewn with papers, ranging from lists she didn’t want to look at, communications she didn’t want to answer, and notes she’d written that she didn’t want to think about. Should she see a doctor about her strange shock symptoms? How many TUBAists could be helping with the reconstruction efforts at once, and where? Where were her parents? 

No, that wasn’t right. She knew where they were. What she didn’t know was how she was going to get them back. 

Deteca groaned softly and pressed her palms into her face. She couldn’t think straight enough for this. Letting her hands fall back to the table, she braced herself against it, seeing that dead young girl in her mind’s eye just after her moment of victory. For a second, her face flickered, becoming not Zaphiris after all but another young girl, limp and empty, crumpled on the ground. Whole, not bleeding, but just as dead. 

She tried to refocus on her work, latching onto a new piece of paper. Surprise pricked her through her exhaustion when its contents registered, because this was something she actually did want to deal with. Scrounging under a damage report to grab her phone, she thumbed buttons until she got to the correct place. Deteca entered Zokora’s number and saved it as a contact, almost smiling. 

Slightly more invigorated, she started to make progress again on that infinite war of paperwork. 

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Nael and Aleva were both slaughtered by the DA.

The End.

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Here's a quick scene with Aln coming home. 

Spoiler

Glass crunched beneath Aln's boots as she trudged through the empty streets. The buildings that lined either side of her were empty husks of what they had been. Small fires still burnt in places. Perhaps she should have stopped to put them out, but she was so tired. 

Ahead, in the midst of a pile of rubble, stood a familiar two-story building. As per John's promise, the army had not destroyed it.

John. Her fingers tightened around the cracked spanreed in her pocket, digging grooves into her skin. She couldn't get his image out of her head. His cracked face, eye missing. The demonic monstrosity he had become. The horrific grin on his face as he extended the panrial. The dead bugs on the floor.

Her window was broken. That she could see from several paces off. The door, too, had been nearly ripped off its hinges. She extended a hand, hesitated, and then pushed it aside. 

It was dark inside. She held up her one remaining infused sphere and peered around. The ground was covered in papers, most scattered from her desk. The spheres she had placed in her lamp were gone; that was to be expected. She picked her way around fallen books, and righted the chair behind her desk. It creaked as she sat.

A small patch of light drifted out from under her jacket and settled on the table. She gazed at the spren. He had been very silent recently. She couldn't blame him. So had she.

Aln placed her head in her hands as exhaustion threatened to overwhelm her. What good was my knowledge? she asked herself. I spend all this time studying, and analysing, and asking questions. What good did it do anyone? In the end, it was all decided by god-like entities and massive armies. As usual. She felt hopeless, lost, like she had just after her brother had left. What am I doing here? Here, in this city where gods do battle and people murder in the name of science. I tried to help. I tried to do something. And I was captured, tortured, and nearly killed. I would have been killed, had not someone with a small army shown up. There's no point. 

"No", whispered a familiar voice in her ear. "This city needs you." 

Aln looked down, surprised, at her quiet spren. He had crept closer, and now danced beside her hand. "How?" She asked, the sound inaudible to her own ears. 

"The others," he said. "The ordinary citizens. Who bothers to explain things to them? How many of them know what's happening in the city at any given time?" He moved onto her arm, and she felt a faint pressure from his nearly non-corporeal form. "You don't have to change the fate of nations to help people, Aln." 

She considered this for a moment, staring out her empty window at the ruined street. Then, with a groan of exhaustion, she bent down and began to pick up her papers.

 

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A snapshot of Lita's last 6 months. This post gets a little darker than my typical write-up, with some violence, dark themes, and implied "interrogation." Nothing crazy, but this does put some of the "Dark" in "Dark Alley."

Spoiler

The man woke slowly, drudging himself up from the well of unconsciousness like a revenant. His eyes were bloodshot and bleary, but they focused soon enough, narrowing in on the woman before him. 

Lita smiled, showing a hint of white teeth. If all was according to plan, the man would have a splitting headache, sensitivity to light, and lingering emotional vulnerability. He bared his teeth at her, anger beginning to fight through the fog left by the drug she’d given him earlier. The ropes binding him to the little chair tightened as he strained against them, and then his expression faltered. He looked downward, brows drawing in, eyes widening just slightly in horror.

Lita drank it in - that one expression was almost worth all the trouble, and she was grateful for the light burn of Tin she had going. All the better to savor this moment.

“Looking for these?” She held up three Steel bracers, and the man’s face went white before he redoubled his efforts to break out of the ropes. Lita walked closer to the man, still smiling.

“The third band was harder to find, I’ll give you that, but we’re very thorough here.”

She winked, and the man spat at her feet. A wad of phlegm clung to the side of one of her boots. Lita arched an auburn brow in his direction, and scraped the toe of her boot along the ground. She clicked her tongue.

“Now is that any way to treat your date, Jarret?”

The man growled low in his throat. “You call this a date?”

“Didn’t I tell you that I’d take you back to my place and introduce you to some friends?” Lita said, slipping a large gold Coin out of her pocket and dancing it across the back of her knuckles. “Well, here we are.”

“I don’t see any friends here,” Jarret said, eyes darting into the corners of the little room.

Lita’s smile turned a little sharper. “I wouldn’t be so eager to meet them, if I were you. For now, we’re alone. Time to get to know one another a little better, wouldn’t you say?”

“Whatever you want, I won’t tell you,” Jarret’s voice was deep and gravelly, and without Tin she wouldn’t have heard the bare quaver at the end of his sentence. But she did hear it. 

Without a word, Lita slipped the Coin back into her pocket and began to unbutton her shirt. It was such an unexpected motion that Jarret was caught off guard, and his eyes followed her fingers in a traitorous line for almost a full breath before he caught himself. Lita felt herself giggle softly.

“I wouldn’t be so quick to make declarations like that,” Lita said, circling slowly around to the back of the chair. Jarret craned his neck but couldn’t quite follow her all the way around. “I can be terribly persuasive. You just have to know a person’s weakness.”

Lita had finished with the buttons on her shirt, and she shucked it off like snakeskin, draping it across the back of the chair before moving around again to face Jarret head-on. She still wore a tight, cropped undershirt that ended just before the high waist of her trousers, and Lita smirked at the echo of disappointment that flickered in Jarret’s eyes.

“Do you know what my weakness is, Jarret?” She continued, stepping even closer, and put her hands on Jarret’s shoulders. His eyes traveled the lengths of her exposed forearms, tracing the rows of tiny spikes that dotted the insides of her arms and ended before the joints of each elbow, and Lita heard his heart begin to pound in his chest. 

“Jewelry,” she said. “I simply can’t resist that shine.” 

Jarret’s right hand slipped out of his ropes with a speed that was startling, even without his Steel. But Lita had been waiting for it, expecting it. And she was burning Pewter.

She caught Jarret’s wrist in her left hand, and in one swift motion, she crushed it between her fingers like a bundle of matches. Jarret screamed just as Lita extinguished her Tin, but even still, it rang in her ears like a struck gong. His whole body spasmed, then sagged against the ropes as tears streamed down his cheeks.

“My arm, my rusting arm…” he sobbed weakly. Jarret attempted to pull out of her grasp, and Lita tightened her fingers around the splintered ruin of his wrist. After he finished screaming, he didn’t try again.

Lita kept her grip on Jarret’s wrist and swung one leg over his knees, perching on his lap in some cruel parody of intimacy. “I’m sorry to tell you this, Jarret, but I know who you are. I know you worked for the Bureau, and I know you were clever enough to evade us for the better part of five months now. But you and your friends were toying with some forces better left alone, and there are some loose ends that we just can’t afford not to tie up.”

Jarret shut his eyes, heaving great gasps of air for several minutes before he could finally speak again. He did so through gritted teeth.

“You’re with the DA, aren’t you?”

“Very good,” Lita said, reaching up to brush some of Jarret’s black hair out of his eyes. He looked at her with a deep, visceral hatred, but her hand around his wrist was enough to keep him from trying anything more. “In another life, we could have used your talents. But then, that’s the beauty of Hemalurgy, isn’t it? Even if you’re not on our side, we can still find a use for your skills.”

Lita could smell the fear rolling off him now, adrenaline and sweat and tears. When did I start burning Tin again? She shook the thought away, tucking it into the back room of her mind. Later. I’ll think about that later.

The door behind her slid open with a light, metallic creak, and Lita knew that someone else had entered - one of the “friends” she’d spoken of earlier. Jarret’s body stiffened beneath her, his breath coming in short bursts now.

“Let me go, please, I’ll tell you whatever you want, please, please,” Jarret whispered into her ear. He was shaking now. Lita brushed two fingers down the side of his neck, then traced his collarbone.

“I know you will,” she said softly. And he did.

Thirty minutes later, Lita stood buttoning her shirt, gritting her teeth as two Denizens strapped Jarret Blithe onto a table. She didn’t have to watch - they’d told her as much. She didn’t have to watch, but she did. It was fast, faster than it should have been. Jarret’s moans halted abruptly, tumbling into the silence like so many cut flowers. They wheeled his body from the room with clinical efficiency, sliding the new spike into a vial of blood and nodding to Lita as though she’d just returned a library book.

This was it - the last end. Jarret knew nothing about the Vortex, or the Void, and no one had kept any copies of their notes. It was over, and Lita was free to pursue her own projects. Six months of hunting down PlasmaCore’s stragglers had finally come to an end.

Lita strode from the empty room, careful to keep her face blank, and waited until she was sure she was alone before Alleytraveling to the blue door that led to her quarters. She took her time with the lock, stepping through the doorway with all the ease of a practiced spy. Cool. Detached. Controlled. 

Then, when the door clicked shut behind her, Lita crumpled onto the floor, buried her head in her hands, and wept.

 

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New character intro! I hope you guys like her. ^_^ This takes place a couple of days before the end of the timeskip, I believe. 

Metal screeches and rubber burns, the smell infiltrating her nostrils even as she turns to face the source of the sudden noises - but it is too late, far too late, as a hulking conglomeration of black metal and plastic slams into her - 

Myriad stood with eyes narrowed and hands on hips, staring across the road. She'd been here, glaring, for so long that people on the other side were starting to give her weird looks. Her current body's hair was short, red, and bouncy with curls. She was freckled down her hands and arms, which seemed disproportionately long for the height they were attached to. Her light gray bag was slung over one shoulder, containing her things; it was the only thing she kept between bodies. 

At first she doesn't even feel it, and then there's just pain, a fiery monster that rampages up and down her body; she wants to thrash, wants to scream, but she can't move her legs at all and her arms only weakly - oh no, what's happening to me - she can only lay there, one arm half crumpled over her chest because trying to twitch it off hurts too much - hot, thick redness is everywhere, and there are screams, and curses, and then she's slipping and she can't hear it all anymore; is she going to meet God, like Mom always says? 

Blowing one excitable flap of her bangs away from her eyes, Myriad decided not to pick someone with bangs the next time she switched. It was entirely possible that she'd forget that resolution soon, however, because most of her thoughts were focused on the rumble of moving vehicles in front of her. There weren't too many, but they all went so fast, buzzing and flashing lights and speeding up and slowing down. None seemed inclined to stop and wait, and she couldn't see a crosswalk anywhere.

Why couldn't this have been in an alley? There were tons of those around here. In fact, they seemed to be this world's trademark unit of space - the city she was in was called Alleycity, and she had heard several more words with 'alley' tacked onto them while moving through crowds of people; both in the usual way, and in her own special way. Alleys didn't have cars or the like, or if they did, at least they couldn't go as fast. 

But no. The group she had heard about was on the city block on the other side of this street, and now Myriad had to cross it if she wanted any hope of finding intelligent people here. 

But the slipping is almost nice, really, because it feels like she's falling into a soft, velvety blanket that keeps itself between her and the agony. She appreciates that. The blanket is also specked with warmth, little flaming bubbles of it that burst against her skin as she snuggles in the blanket. They're so small and far away, though, and it occurs to her that touching one, nestling herself into it, would be just perfect. 

Myriad took a deep breath, then forced it out until her lungs were empty of air. She waited for a relatively dull stretch of traffic, then gathered herself and calmly set one booted foot on the road. 

She pulls herself laboriously through the velvet, which is suddenly beginning to feel suffocating rather than freeing. It's so close and tight around her, and now her breaths are coming tightly too...wait, are her breaths coming at all? Has she been breathing this whole time? All at once she doesn't know and it's too much and too HERE and she can't do this and she just wants the pain back. At least with the pain, she mostly knew where she was. Onward she stumbles. 

She'd meant to walk through the short lull, but the instant after she moved forward, Myriad heard a screeching sound, froze for approximately a second, and then ran all the way to the other side, a high, panicked sound erupting from her. She hit the sidewalk and dropped to her knees, bracing her borrowed palms flat on the rough pavement despite getting scratched.

It takes far, far too long to reach the nearest flare of heat, and yet she has the oddest sensation that it was really only a heartbeat or two - two slow, thudding heartbeats that gush out the last of her life. But that idea isn't very loud in her mind when the rest of her just wants this heat, wants it abruptly and more than anything else she knows. 

Myriad whipped her head back to the danger, eyes searching, seeking, struggling...and then stopping as she saw it. Someone had activated a drill while doing construction. They hadn't meant to scare her. It hadn't been a car. This wasn't even a new event; the citizens of this place had been fixing it up for as long as she'd been here, after the damage of a war or the like. 

She placed her head on her folded arms, half-sitting on the sidewalk for a minute as her adrenaline drained away. There was no point in trying to remain dignified anymore - everybody over here had seen her get startled by a drill, rush across the street, and then collapse. Freaking fantastic. 

She noticed footsteps, then lifted her head to see a young woman with dark blue eyes and a gentle smile crouching beside her. "Are you okay, hon?" She extended a hand to help Myriad up.

"I think so," Myriad mumbled, unsteadily letting the woman pull her up by the arm. "Thanks." Glancing around, she winced at the stares she was receiving - and at her scraped hands. That's annoying. She looked the blue-eyed woman up and down, then mentally shrugged. It was about time she moved on anyway.

With the woman still holding her wrist, Myriad simply went for it. She Bolted. 

She touches the burning mass, and it is glorious. Something in her falls away like a sheet of rain, and she launches herself forward, easily clawing her way into the heat. It feels like home and life and normalcy; she relaxes. 

Or does she? A dissipating sense of extraordinary panic and guilt rests in her heart, permeating her even as it drift she away. She frowns and...opens her eyes? She’d thought they were already open. She sits in the driver’s seat of a car, half-unbuckled from her seat belt. It’s not her car, though; her car is - is - what color is it? That detail escapes her grasp now, as do all others about the vehicle. She finishes undoing the belt and swings the door open, stepping out. It is then that she notices that the car is crookedly parked at the edge of the road. And that her hand is not her hand. 

She looks down at the hand, examining it in shock, and notices something else. Her-hand-not-her-hand drops to the flat expanse where her chest should be. Not only is this too muscular to be hers, it's clearly not female at all. She skitters back a step, beginning to hyperventilate; her foot bumps something. She turns. 

There she is, bloody, broken. Dead. 

The ghost of Marian Summers screams. 

***

Myriad stepped through the door of the Scholar's Guild as literally a new woman and looked around appraisingly with eyes like a beetle's shell and a smile that was no longer gentle. 

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Mac stared at the destruction of the city below him.

"Storm it. How are we going to fix this?" his friend walked up next to him on the observational platform, "You know why they're gonna be mad right?"

"Yeah," Mac replied, his voice barely above a whisper. "The experiment escaped. We lost years worth of work overnight. As well as an entire city."

Mac chuckled at the irony. His first research project, map the beaver spiritweb, had seemed simple at first. But as they built the breeding centers and started spiking the beavers they quickly realized that beavers responded uniquely to certain patterns of spikes, they became furious. Filled with a hatred for anything that moved. Mac tried to capitalize on that, creating a weapon. He went beyond the scope of the project, giving beavers allomancy and feruchemy. Creating the lord beaver.

Then early this morning it went missing. And now, looking out at the city through the window of their lab, Mac  could see what happened.

"None of the tests indicated that he had this much power?" His friend shook his head. "And we have no way to track it?" Another shake of the head. "How did he kill them?"

"Preliminary reconnaissance is saying that he managed to pull all of the metal in the city into one big ball in the center. Our lab was protected due to the shields, but it destroyed the rest of the infrastructure and buildings. No one knew it was that intelligent or powerful." 

Mac stopped. "Storm it." What to do next? He needed to think like the beaver. Where would he go now? He shook his head and started pacing. They had no information on The Lord Beavers psychology. All we knew was that he had decided to kill everything he could.

Suddenly, Mac realized something. "Guys I think we have a chance. The beaver went for the closest city he could. But what if it wasn't the closest city? What if that city wasn't there?"

His colleagues eyes widened. There was only one thing that could change the past. "Are you proposing to burn the entire city down with balefire?" Mac nodded.

"If the city was burned out of existence, then we could find the path to the nearest city, figure out how far he could have gotten in 2 hours had the city not been here and then capture him there." 

"But doesn't that pull the risk of destroying the planet? If we destroy a city of this size then there is no telling what could happen." 

"It doesn't matter, we need to get the beaver otherwise we are all dead. If the city is destroyed we can blame it on another black hole incident. They happen every day."

Suddenly, Mac was a mile away from the city. The burning wreckage and smoke rising into the sky at a distance. He glanced at his friend for confirmation that the team was in position. He gave him a thumbs up in return.

Mac seized the Saidin, feeling the power of creation flow through him, he forced it into one large weave of balefire, then released it toward the city.

The white yellow beam soared through the sky, and as it hit the city the world cried out in pain.

Then he was back in his room, lying on a bed, a thousand years in the future. The room was completely silent. No stimuli at all. He took several deep breaths, trying to slow his racing heart. Reaching over to the light he turned it on. As he moved he felt his sheets. Completely drenched from sweat. Why was he remembering this now?

He knew the story of his failures well. Too well. He shook his head and started to get dressed. There was no harm in having an early start to the day. 

7

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The sound of pens scratching against paper continued monotonously, the only other sounds to be heard were an occasional shift in the wood of a chair or a small scuff of a shoe against carpet. Laurelai sat at one of the many desks in the department of records, stack of blank paper on one side, reference books on the other, and a lengthy report that she needed to properly transcribe in the middle.

Why do we not have interns for this. She wondered yet again. Or some kind of fabrial or Aonic program, there was one around the Worldspike that was sentient or something right? Why can't they do the paperwork?

With a tired sigh she finished the record, signing her name and id down the bottom and placing it to one side before pulling over another fresh sheet and beginning the process of a new incident report. There'd been a huge backlog of those for some time now, the aftermath of Plasmacore and the creatures they'd flooded the city with. But they were almost through now, a few more days and she might actually be able to see the sun again. Or better yet, a tavern.

Then again my last trip to a tavern didn't end so well. She thought, smiling wryly down at the desk. But it's been months since then, another little trip couldn't hurt.

Her pen stilled suddenly as something caught her attention, the name 'Lita' appeared near the top of the summary she was reading. She'd seen Lita a few times since the attack on the city, though the memory of some of what had happened that last night still caused her to blush in embarrassment. 

Yes, perhaps the tavern isn't such a great idea still. Jeserah only just stopped quoting last times report every time I come in here.

Ignoring the faint flush that she felt at the memory, Laurelai returned to reading the summary. Thankfully this one wasn't a record of drunken escapades, just a standard interrogation session. But it seemed that Lita had been just as busy as Laurelai these last few months, hopefully with something less tedious than paperwork.

Well she's doing well for herself, hasn't been eaten by anything in the Alleys yet, that's always a plus. And interrogations? I suppose she had to participate in that side of the counterintelligence department at some point. And it's not as though she was some fresh and innocent lamb to begin with.

A frown creased her brow as she continued reading, making her way through the report. She pulled out a different pen as she finished, one used for Alleycant, and stared at it silently. Thinking.

Later perhaps. Once everything has calmed down.

She tucked the Alleycant pen away, switching back to her usual pen with a sigh and beginning to fill in the official record.

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Sometime I'll edit in my story and a bunch of stuff for Adren and his responsibilities. But it'll probably be a doc link cause I have grand ideas.

Tldr

Adren reads a lot of stories to Jethro and Mercy. And other stories, history, philosophy anything. A lot in the backyard of his house 

Edited by ElephantEarwax
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Rig happened to have the bad luck of popping into the alley caverns between eras, but hey, things could be worse? Right?

Rigex Character Sheet

Spoiler

Name: Rigex Lekal, but goes by Rig

Physical Characteristics: Tall, standing at around 6’4, with pale skin, brown hair, and blue eyes. 

Investiture: Twinborn coinshot and firesoul, or allomantic steel and feruchemical brass.

Skills: Respectable with a dueling cane, and a decent shot. Excellent liar and has expert control over his alomancy.

Equipment: Allomantic: Steel flakes kept on his belt at all times.

            Feruchemical: A pair of brass forearm bracers where he stores most of his heat, and a necklace threaded into his skin where he stores heat during the most important parts of his life which he has never tapped.

            Standard: A dueling cane and revolver.

Weakness: Rigex is convinced that his youth as a scholar and his life as a fixer give him a combination of skills better than just about anyone; he focuses on the flaws of others while only seeing his own strengths, leading him to underestimate just about everyone. He is incapable of acknowledging when he made a mistake and is a terrible judge of character, so he’s easy to play.  

Family: Rigex has an uncle back in elendel who he is close with, and a younger sister who he hasn’t seen in years.

Home Planet: Scadrial

Backstory: Rigex grew up in a minor branch of House Lekal, studying maths and sciences through his childhood at the insistence of his father. At age 13 he was beat up by a few boys on account of his fathers behavior, and snapped to become a coinshot. After that, he took up dueling with an uncle while continuing under his father’s tutelage. After the passing of his father at age 21, he moved to elendel and began working directly under house lekal to take care of any issues they needed to go away quietly. After failing to quiet a witness to one of the houses shadier transactions, he was tossed out and made his way to alley city one.

Guild: Don’t know enough about them yet-Somewhere with cookies, maybe?

Psyche: Confident. Friendly, but never particularly attached to anyone. Wishes he could be, though.

Personality: Motivated and Pragmatic

Appearance: Reasonably fit and good looking, generally wearing fashionable clothing and some jewelry. 

Theme Song: Firebreather, by Macklemore

Fighting Style: He prefers not to and will talk his way out of any situation he can. If he must, though, he uses cheap shots and tricks whenever he can in combination with speed and precision, but not strength.

 

Rigex dove into the cellar, bullets tearing into the wood behind him. He knew House Tekiel would be upset by his stunt, but Lekal coming after him? His own house? Glancing around, he spotted a small alcove to his right. He ran over to it, then crouched, hoping whoever was first down wouldn’t notice him, giving him an easy hostage.

Next to him stood the Nomad, a strange man who had helped Rig thus far. The little man had an air of calmness about him as he muttered something to a rack of old clothes in the corner.

Great, thought Rig. So he is a madman. He flipped a small table and sighted on the entry to the cellar, racking his brains for a way out. He had no time, however, as a pair of boots fell to the ground faster than they should have. Taman, then. An old colleague, a lurcher, sent to get rid of the Lekal’s embarrassment. Never mind that it had been their fault in the first place! Well, he and Taman had often joked about which of them would win in a fight. Now they would find out.

Rig took the first shot, straight at Taman’s face. There was at most a few meters between them, and Rig’s aim wasn’t bad enough to miss from so close, but the bullet arced downwards at the last second and thudded into the thick wooden breastplate Taman wore. Taman looked up and smiled, then raised his own shotgun and leveled it at Rig, pulling the trigger.

As he did, a blanket jumped in front of Rig. Taman had loaded birdshot, not a slug, knowing Rig was a coinshot, and the small ammunition was almost completely absorbed by the heavy cover. The fuzzy wall between Taman and Rig dropped, revealing a stupefied expression on the usually stoic man’s face. The look turned to panic as the rest of the laundry from the pile Nomad had been conversing with jumped up and began wrapping around him, while Rig looked on in fascinated horror. The man slowly stopped convulsing under the mass of clothing, looking like some sort of terrifying mummy made by an overenthusiastic washing machine. Nomad quickly walked over to the pile of cloth, and touched each article of clothing before looking back towards Rig. “Time to go. The rest will be here soon, boy” said the older man, looking for the first time like he really knew what he was talking about.

“Go where! We’re a bit stuck, in case you hadn’t noticed.”

Yelling from above suggested that the rest of Taman’s crew had decided that things had likely not gone Taman’s way, and that meant soon there would be company in the small cellar. Rig suspected he could take any of them on his own—it was unlikely any of them would be metalborn like him—but all of them? That was a stretch.

Without bothering to answer, Nomad shoved past the table and Rig into the small alcove, and shoved on something in the wall. The entire thing gave way, showing a void of darkness beyond. The mysterious fellow turned back towards Rig, and then stepped backwards into the darkness.

Rig looked up at the cellar entrance above him. It was the only source of light in the room, and the only other exit. And he knew going through it meant a fight he wouldn’t win, which left one choice: follow the madman. He cautiously entered the darkness beyond the alcove, and suddenly felt his stomach clench as the world itself seemed to jump for a moment. Stepping backwards towards the cellar, his foot met a dripping rock wall. He turned around and saw…nothing. No sign of the cellar or his pursuers, and no sign of Nomad ahead. While he couldn’t see in this darkness—he was no tineye—he could hear the sounds of dripping water, of small animals skittering around, and above it all, the haunting voice of Nomad coming from far away.

“Welcome to the alleys, boy.”

 

6

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[one week after the events of All Lights Quenched, 25th of Phantus]

Bellatrix Deathstrike, a rejected bastard, the slime that attacked the city, awoke.

All she saw was white.

White everywhere she looked. A white bed, with a white frame, covered with a white blanket, with a white pillow. White walls, with a softly carpeted white floor. A white ceiling. Everything but the floor smooth, but looked like it could squish. Everything fused to the ground except the pillows and the blanket. No back of the bed except the wall.

And it dawned to her.

This was a psych ward.

She screamed, but nobody came. Nobody cared.

~-~-~-~-~

[three weeks later, 16th of Stinatus]

Bella rocked back in forth in the chair. They had come after two hours of her screaming, brought food. They had kept her alive, against a will.

She raised her hands, examining them. They had no nails. She'd lost that privilege after the first attempt.

She looked at the bed. The blanket was connected to the edges, like a sleeping bag. She'd lost that privilege after the second attempt.

She looked down. She wore no clothes. She'd lost that privilege after the third attempt.

Bella was good now. Bella would behave, be the nice little girl.

Or so they thought. For they did not know something she had discovered  three days ago. Her full power. It had been greatly diminished, true, and her fire wouldn't even work for most of a month. But that wasn't it, what she was doing. She had tried hard to learn the names of her captors. Or, as they called themselves, phycologists. She grinned tightly at the woman spooning her food. One more day.

~-~-~-~-~

[one day later, 17th of Stinatus]

Bella stood there, over the corpse of the phycologist who had fed her for these weeks. Blood dripped from the woman's neck. A fork stuck from it.

Bellatrix kneeled, sliding her eyelids shut. The woman had been kind, in her own way. She grabbed the keys, and tried to open the door. It didn't work.

Then she saw the small card the woman had on her chest. It must scan for that. She grabbed it, putting it on, and went through the door.

Into the outside world.

And that was when she got shot in the chest.

~-~-~-~-~

[one week later]

Bellatrix sobbed quitely. She had been doing so off and on for the three days since she awoke. She had killed the poor woman, the one who protected her. Because the city hated her. This psych ward was the only one in the city that would take her. There was a constant riot outside. And they protected her. She sobbed.

This time, she would be their good girl. For real.

~-~-~-~-~

[three months into the timeskip, 19th of Kepery]

"Freedom." The word felt odd in her mouth. She hadn't talked in three months, but that wasn't the only reason. The concept was odd as well. She had lived in that little box of a room for three months. Her lips cracked as she licked them, stepping out of the ward, wearing the white robes they had provided. She rather liked them. They gave her a bit of familiarity, with the white color. So much color was... overwhelming.

She hugged her arms to herself, walking out into the street. They had forgotten about her. And her highlights had faded to the point she must look freakish. White clothes, white hair, very pale skin. The only color on her the Bloodflame tattoo and her violet eyes. She looked at the tattoo, and closed her eyes, trying to wall of the sudden tears. She was trying to heal. That's what the phycologists said she had to do. So she would.

She walked down the street, and saw an ad.

Help repair buildings lost in the Invasion! Get money! Get friends! Get the satisfaction of helping!

She tore down the poster, and began heading for the location it stated.

~-~-~-~-~

[five months into the timeskip, 19th of Diagrama]

Bellatrix stood in the clothing shops, watching the man as he measured her every diameter. He would make robes, like the white ones. But these ones would have some new features. Pockets for guns, knives, poisons. It would turn black with the press of a button, her personal favorite trick. And a hood could slide up from the inside, covering her face. It also had two places cut down the back, because she had discovered what those tattoos did. They gave her wings. Wings of black fire.

She grinned a small amount. It was time to give back to the city. Time to kill those who continued to wrong the city, despite what it had suffered.

She would become a killer, for them. For good.

~-~-~-~-~

[one week later, 26th of Diagrama]

Bellatrix dropped from the ceiling. She landed in the middle of the room, a small circle of dust flying up around her. She raised her knives, slashing the throats of the two suprised men beside her. She dropped, stuck out her leg, hitting the three other men nearby, and bringing them to the ground. She impaled two of them through the eyes with her knives, and left them there, running forward to a location in the room where another of the four remaining men stood. This was the last real threat. She grabbed him by the neck, and fire blasted from her hands, burning his face and head terribly. He might survive, but he would likely have brain trauma, and he would never see or hear again. On top of that, his sense of smell would also be terribly damaged.

He deserved it.

She smirked darkly, pulling out her two short swords, and stabbed the man running at her in the chest. She used him as a shield to block the gunshots at her, and threw the other, hitting the hand of the man she had knocked down, impaling it to the floor. He screamed loudly, and she basked in the sound of a criminal's pain.

Pulled the sword out of the mans chest, running forward and stabbing the man who had shot at her. Then she let him drop, sword still in his chest.

She turned to the last man, and walked up to him, thrusting her chest forward, moving her hips seductively. She walked up to the terrified man, face pale, and wrapped her leg around his, pulling him close, bringing her face close to his.

"Goodbye."

Black wings, made of tendrils of fire, burst from her back, wrapping around him. He cried out, and she snapped his neck, letting him fall. She grinned at the man on the ground, with the sword in his hand. "Tell them what you saw."

She ripped the sword out of his hand, leaving the other weapons, and flew out into the night.

~-~-~-~-~

[Three days before the end of the timeskip, 15th of Witrosa]

Bellatrix cleaned her blade, pulling out a bottle of Rosharan violet. The weakest alcohol she drank these days. She tipped it back, quickly draining it, and wiped her mouth. She threw the blade at the wall, where it joined the other seven identical blades imbedded there. Each time she broke up a syndicate, a drug lord meeting, a gang, she would leave one witness, and all of the blades but one. That blade she would throw there, to mark the attack.

Eight.

She had done much for the city. They called her The Dark Angel, and one picture of her had even been released, and was circling.

But it wasn't enough. It was never enough. She pulled out a bottle of horneater white, and took a swig.

The strong stuff.

She fell with a thump.

Good deeds do not make up for bad ones.

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Mac sat on the edge of a cliff, thinking.

When it came down to it, what was he? Why did he regret what he did?

The nightmares had continued. Not nightly, but enough to be bothersome.

Why he had them wasn't as big of an issue. He accepted that as a part of life. Most any denizen got nightmares. Once you became a full member you either broke your soul enough with spikes, or killed enough people that the cracks began to show though. 

No he wasn't concerned with why they were there. He was concerned with why he didn't stop them. Or even try to. 

The thought of spiking someone else's sanity over his wasn't appealing. Neither did he want to add more stability spikes. There was a disconnect in his mind. His subconscious instincts knew something that his brain didn't. Something made the usual methods of repair for a broken soul unappetizing. 

So what was it? 

When he started on his path, it was to protect his mother. Then when he came back and it was too late, he started pursuing vengeance. But what pushed him beyond simple vengeance? What pushed him to pursue a path for over 1000 years, with ruthless efficiency, caring only for himself. 

He tried to dig back in his memories. Blocking out the images and instead focusing on his feelings

When he killed his father, he hadn't been happy or fulfilled. His mother was still gone, and at that point nothing could bring her back. If he was being honest with himself, he stayed because he couldn't bear the thought of leaving this new world behind. The opportunities were endless, and so he left, Joining the Alleys. 

But what had sparked this change in him? When he died, he realized he needed to be in control. At the time it was just for his image. The lethal hemalurgy who was in control was often more terrifying than the insane one with blood running down his lab coat.

But he realized as he lived these last 20 years that being in control gave him more power. Builders could always do more than destroyers.

But what changed these last 6 months? Why, for the first time in milenia did he concern himself with those who he killed? They were gone. No matter what he did he couldn't bring them back.

Mac shook his head and got up. Walking to the buildings nearby then disappearing into the alley between them.

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4 months in...

The city really was a pleasant place to be when it wasn't attack. People didn't always try to kill you. The air wasn't even all that polluted. And it was better than being indoors any day. 

Freedom Acute sat on a park bench, people-watching. One man chased after a dog who'd pulled his leash free. A little girl seemed to be conversing with some ants. A couple was enjoying a nice leisurely walk in the beautiful weather. Some TUBAists were giving out free samples, asking for opinions on a new type of cookie. 

Everything was just so...peaceful. Even when she'd been on Scadrial, there always was something to do. A sibling had lost a tooth. Someone have been mean to someone. Dishes or laundry needed to be done. Never so much time to just do nothing

She was lightly tapping her atium stores. Just enough to not be bent over in pain, but not so much that she didn't look her true age. It felt like a day for being true to herself. Whoever that was. At this point she didn't know. But at that moment it didn't matter. It didn't need to matter.

@Truthless of Shinovar

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Short wholesome Wes scene :P

Wes held the envelope tight in his hands. He was in his dormitory room, and he held onto the envelope tightly for two reasons. The first reason was because he did not want to loose the envelope to the heavy breeze that was blowing through the Did now his dorm-mates had left open, and the second reason was because he knew for a fact this wasn’t an overdue notice on his books, which meant someone had cared about Wes enough to actually write a letter to him. His first real mail in years and he was excited.

Opening the envelope he read the letter inside, short and sweet, from Mike:

Spoiler

 

Wes,

I thought about writing to you for a while, but I was afraid thought it was better to leave you didn’t know what to write.

I hope you have been fine these last five months. I had an assignment, that led me out of the city, So I mostly spent my time working. Well, you know what I do.

Did you also get that invitation? As it was delivered specifically to my place, I will follow it, return to Oasis for the festivities. Maybe we can see each other there.

Yours Mike

P.S.: You are the best Wes. Never think less of yourself, because you are great and brilliant. You saved me so often, what ever you are doing, you will rock the thing!

 

Wes closed the letter, and couldn’t stop himself from beaming the biggest smile he’d ever beamed. Mike believed in him. That was great. Mike believed in him, thought he was great and brilliant and the best, believed in him when Wes didn’t believe in himself. Reading the other parts of the letter he remembered the invitation he’d been given a couple days ago, for the Ghostblood awards night. Wes didn’t know whether he was special for getting the invite or whether it was standard procedure.

Wes wanted to write back, right now, but he didn’t have a pen or paper so he was just content with just reading the letter over again a couple times, before hugging it and wondering where he could find a suitable place on the wall, maybe next to his bed, to frame it.

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       Cumbert Swishysword terror of the-- No, He was no terror anymore. Cumbert Swishysword slumped on a table in the Happy Inquisitor. He was not feeling happy. His bearded cheek rested on the rough grain of the table. The lantern flickered and glowed on the table. It leaped and reached like it was trying to escape its wick and fly into the sky. It wouldn't get very far, there was a ceiling overhead.

        Cumbert Swishysword was lost. At one day, he was the terror of the fruit markets. He was the 32nd most feared pirate of the seas. Now he was lost in a city he didn't know, he didn't understand. People with strange faces, pierced with spikes, strange beings from myth and legend, characters with emotional difficulties and improper coping methods!

        Cumbert Swishysword was dead in the water. Others past him by, but he could not follow. This was truly the doldrums. He needed purpose, he needed a fire in his hearth to warm him, and wind in his sails to push him forward.

        Things had happened, things that could change this very world. He would not stay hidden this time, he would rise out of these dark places and face the light. At least, after he rested. He needed rest. Just for five more minutes.

Edited by FatherTiempo
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On 10/8/2019 at 10:51 AM, Silva said:

4 months in...

The city really was a pleasant place to be when it wasn't attack. People didn't always try to kill you. The air wasn't even all that polluted. And it was better than being indoors any day. 

Freedom Acute sat on a park bench, people-watching. One man chased after a dog who'd pulled his leash free. A little girl seemed to be conversing with some ants. A couple was enjoying a nice leisurely walk in the beautiful weather. Some TUBAists were giving out free samples, asking for opinions on a new type of cookie. 

Everything was just so...peaceful. Even when she'd been on Scadrial, there always was something to do. A sibling had lost a tooth. Someone have been mean to someone. Dishes or laundry needed to be done. Never so much time to just do nothing

She was lightly tapping her atium stores. Just enough to not be bent over in pain, but not so much that she didn't look her true age. It felt like a day for being true to herself. Whoever that was. At this point she didn't know. But at that moment it didn't matter. It didn't need to matter.

@Truthless of Shinovar

Tels walked through the park. The air felt crisp, a nice contrast to the constant heat of Taldain. It wasn’t often that he came through the park, as there weren’t many people who had fat wallets, not to mention the off chance that somebody he had robbed might recognize him. 

But today....

Today was good. Tels felt good, and he truly felt happy to be alive. The attack on the Alleycity was finally over, and surprisingly, there was peace and quiet. Though Tels would rather be on some adventure more often than not, it was nice to take a break every now and then. 

Tels was in such a good mood, in fact, that when he saw the woman sitting on the bench, also looking surprisingly content, he decided to sit down next to her. “Hi,” he said, “I’m Tels. It’s suprising to see all of these people living in peace, without any fear of danger, isn’t it?”

Edited by Truthless of Shinovar
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20 hours ago, Truthless of Shinovar said:

Tels was in such a good mood, in fact, that when he saw the woman sitting on the bench, also looking surprisingly content, he decided to sit down next to her. “Hi,” he said, “I’m Tels. It’s suprising to see all of these people living in peace, without any fear of danger, isn’t it?”

"Freedom," she said, not even taking a moment to judge if he were a threat. Foolish, but she was young. Slipping up was natural. 

Tels seemed to also be feeling the goodness of the day. She smiled. "It is kind of nice. I doubt it'll last though, you know? Ever since the Sixteen Year Peace ended, everything's happened within small ranges of time. And yet, we're living through it. We're living through history. Years from now, if we live that long, children will be asking us where we were when things went down at PlasmaCore. It'll be the equivalent of the Seven Day War.

"It's kind of crazy to think," Freedom said. "That I'll be telling them that I was inside the building, right alongside the Ghostbloods."

The man chasing the dog finally caught hold of the leash again. Needless to say, the dog was none to pleased about it.

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On 10/10/2019 at 6:34 PM, Silva said:

"Freedom," she said, not even taking a moment to judge if he were a threat. Foolish, but she was young. Slipping up was natural. 

Tels seemed to also be feeling the goodness of the day. She smiled. "It is kind of nice. I doubt it'll last though, you know? Ever since the Sixteen Year Peace ended, everything's happened within small ranges of time. And yet, we're living through it. We're living through history. Years from now, if we live that long, children will be asking us where we were when things went down at PlasmaCore. It'll be the equivalent of the Seven Day War.

"It's kind of crazy to think," Freedom said. "That I'll be telling them that I was inside the building, right alongside the Ghostbloods."

The man chasing the dog finally caught hold of the leash again. Needless to say, the dog was none to pleased about it.

Tels paused for a moment. Freedom? Like.. the people were free? Or maybe... Oh right. Her name. “Well, this is the Alleycity we’re talking about. I doubt peace will ever last long,” Tels said. “You mentioned the Ghostbloods... you wouldn’t happen to be a member, would you?”

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On 10/13/2019 at 0:59 PM, Truthless of Shinovar said:

Tels paused for a moment. Freedom? Like.. the people were free? Or maybe... Oh right. Her name. “Well, this is the Alleycity we’re talking about. I doubt peace will ever last long,” Tels said. “You mentioned the Ghostbloods... you wouldn’t happen to be a member, would you?”

She laughed. "Nope. I don't think I'm quite the right material for it. At least not right now." It occured to her that because she was tapping, the brand on her forehead did not exist and wouldn't confuse things anymore. It was a nice thought.

"But you don't have to be in a guild to end up involved someway or another. Even a sibling is enough to trigger trouble. Or simply your Investiture." Pry. Then Lusk. Both of those connections ended up with a building exploding at some point. 

Freedom fidgeted with an atium mind bracelet on her wrist, then eyed him. "Are you a Ghostblood?"

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