The Stolen Meteor sits somewhere in the middle of a parking lot.
It does this entirely seriously and without irony, resting atop the wreckage of the car of some poor intern at the Confederacy's Ministry of Knowledge. It is also large enough to be and to contain a large building in and of itself; the structures that poke out of what looks very, very much like the traditional cliche of a meteor are all geometric, squarish, and typically constructed of brushed steel. Many of them are at odd andles, considering the roughly spherical nature of the large meteor.
It might take a little flight to get to the top, should one want ot enter from there; the bottom has several doors to the interior accessible, visible as simple, plain sheets of metal marked with the image of a spirograph now familiar to those involved in the session as a "gate" marking. Some of the lower buildings appear to have markings of various sorts: One is marked with triangular fractal sort of design, one is marked with another spirograph, and one is marked with a symbol traditionally denotating a pawn in chess images. Above are several others, but one will have to fly up there, or at the very least find a substantial ladder or climbing mechanism, if they want to go see those.
Several burst of energy, attempts to teleport into the meteor, have been detected over the course of the past weeks. None have been successful. At the base of the meteor, right above the crumpled car, are several parking tickets charged to Laer. A tow truck sits nearby, forlornly.
Laer is getting a little tired of dealing with being harrassed by the parking cops, and in any case the procrastination of the meteor exploration has been nagging at her like a toothache. One she's finally decided to deal with.
Cirno and other people who Know Things about technology are supposed to be coming to help her out, but for the moment the elf is flying about, exploring the exterior of the meteor, trying to figure out how she wants to enter and what all of her options are. Until Cirno is suited up and ready, along with anyone else who wants to come, she's not going inside.
Tshallandria is at the base of the meteor near the doors, and she has a very amused expression on her face while looking at the tow truck, and the parking tickets. "Hah… Now there's one ticket they're going to have a very hard time delivering." She chuckles a bit more, "Or for that matter, getting payment for."
Then with a smile she steps up to the door, and steps in. "I wonder if we should bring PB along for this… …Eh."
Truth be told, Cirno's been rather curious about the meteor as well. Things have been busy, and there was no real hurry to investigate something that was in their back yard, provided it wasn't a bomb. So she kind of kept putting it off until… well, now. So even though she said she was getting suited up, it actually isn't that long at all before the fairy flits over through the air, wearing her power armor just in case, and slows with a faint whine of the capacitors recharging from the flight.
"Hey Tshallandria! Laer!" Oh, cheery today! The blue-haired girl is fitting her visor on, and just got here in time to hear Tshall's comment. "Oh, I guess we could if you want. Or we can poke around inside and then bring him if we need him. Can you get him here quick?" Technology she knows, but the other two are considerably better at the whole 'portal' thing.
The top features another three structures that Laer hasn't entered. Though she would likely recognize the spirograph-marked building as the one she entered before, these three were on the other side of the meteor. It looks like there's a building marked with a double-helix, a building marked with the image of a crescent that is clearly meant to be reminiscient of a moon, and one large tower-like structure marked with the image of an antenna with radial lines around it.
The interiors of the meteor are of a uniform nature; all of them are relatively new constructions from the look of them. Metal, tiled floors are all only lightly dusty, the walls arer simple, brushed steel, and there are pole-shaped artificial lights inside the structure, still active. There is enough space at all times for a reasonably-sized group to move through. It looks like the place was well-traveled for a few months, up to the point where it stopped. The ceiling has low-hanging metal tubes and wiring in nearly all cases.
This is rather severely skewed. Entering the door puts Tshallandria on the ceiling, which is technically the floor, due to how the meteor is being affected by the gravity of the Ministry of Knowledge rather than that of itself. It's skewed to the side, slightly. It's not severe enough that it's impossible to navigate, but it might be harderto walk dramatically.
The interior of the building appears to hold several small, human-sized tubes. Each of these contain a single specimin within. A mixture of black and white humanoid entities are suspended inside, twitching slightly. Consoles on the ceiling-floor nearby give constant information about them, such as biological data. An office-like workstation appears to have, at one time, been in a corner of the room; it has now fallen off the floor and onto the ceiling, but it looks like it might be salvagable, possibly. Not the computer, but certainly the physical files in the dented metal desk.
Well. "I have no idea what any of these are. Want to split up, to maximize the chances of finding something awesome?" Laer asks, curiously. "And I wouldn't mind PB being here. I am still trying to recruit him, officially."
She will then fly back up to the top, intending to go into the moon-marked building, planning on having a good look around. The unimportant rooms tend to have the second-most valuable treasure, after all!
Once inside the structure, Tshallandria's blade sweeps out of it's sheath, and Grace splits the air. Literally. Carving a portal in reality from here, to Arthur's home. A moment later, and Tshallandria sticks her head through the porthole, "Arthur. You're being kidnapped for adventure." She grins and gestures at him, "Come on."
As soon as he STEPS through, the porthole would close behind him, preventing any other visitors from coming along to places … they shouldn't be. "Welcome, to the Meteor Stolen from Space. Or… Something like that. We haven't really had a chance to go diving into it yet, but … Where would you like to go first my friend?" A pause, "Oh. Should we be paying you a consultation fee or something?"
Cirno watches Tshall run off, then shrugs to herself and flies after Laer, heading for the moon-marked door. Her sensors are running, but she's only half paying attention to them. "I don't really expect trouble, but some of this tech is pretty weird. Do you have any ideas on what we might find in here?"
Arthur makes a distinct effort to stop being the other guy, and succeeds after a brief conflict. He steps through, saying, "Oh, rad. Sounds like an awesome kidnapping." He steps through, grinning. "Hey, portals, remind me to ask you how that works. I think maybe I should try to get into figuring out how to connect places to other places. Getting around the Incipisphere is kind of a pain in the ass." He looks up at the various transparent tubes above (below?) him on the ceiling and squints at the contents. "The hell is even going on here, though? What are those guys?"
ENTER A COMMAND:
======> Vruasa: Go to PB's place in fast-forward.
Vruasa Telash is suddenly just kind of there at Arthur's skull-faced doom house. He went too fast and forgot his hat, but his shades more than make up for the lack of classiness. Anyway, it's not like he's going to LOGAL right now, so there's no reason that he /has/ to have that thing on. Unfortunately fast-forwarding through everything to do with your life has some drawbacks. He has no idea whether or not CS has even left her place yet, or what kind of preperations she has to go through to get here.
======> Wait for girl.
God, this is boring. Maybe there's some imps hanging around you can murder.
Vruasa removes his AERODYNAMIC ROCKET SHOCKSPEAR from his sylladex and roams around tazing imps in Arthur's house. It is pretty good at passing the time.
Tshallandria shakes her head at Arthur, "Well. Quite frankly, I don't have a clue as to what's going on here." She glances at Arthur for a moment, "But to go back to your earlier question… The portholes are just something that Grace has been enchanted to do, On the other hand, I suspect we could teach you to teleport, or at least fly."
A pause, "You can fly now right? I suspect it would help us in our investigations here." A gesture at Arthur, and she casts a spell, a spell that gives him the ability to fly, before she levitates up to one of the tubes. "Hmm… I do wonder what is in these…"
She reaches up to lightly tap at one of the tubes.
The moon building matches the aesthetic of the other location. However, it is substantially smaller, and has a familiar console present within it. It's something Laer, particularly, would remember! It appears as though this is another of those machines she encountered previously, a console with a gold moon button and a purple moon button on it, with a screen just above (below) it and a container nearby. One of these infinite Prospit/Derse genetic code production devices, if Laer happens to recall.
There are several dozen of these devices and these containers all along the room. It looks like there were a lot of spare containers too, though they're all on the ceiling, and some have since shattered. None were full, though.
> Vruasa: Be Arerth.
You are now ARERTH RIALTH. You're kind of bored and just got done burning that jacket of yours which was damaged last night, and also was covered in DRAGON EGG BIRTH SLIME. You put on a new jacket, of course; you have tons of spares for just this reason. Now you have to figure out what to do.
> Arerth: Hunt some frogs.
What are you, retarded? You just got done changing! And showering. You don't want to get some FROG SLIME all over your brand new SPARE CLOTHES, do you? There has to be something more productive to do.
Arerth: Annoy Vruasa.
Now we're talking. You concentrate for a moment and notice that Vruasa is in the presence of some injured imps. Which are near YOUR injured imps at that same location, not that anyone knows about that. You're one space-hop away from annoying Vruasa! Which you complete without any issues.
And that is how Arerth suddenly appears next to Vruasa, before looking at him, then the imps, then back at him, and simply asking: "hello what are you up to???"
Arthur can't do a silly dance! Only the coolest of dances are accessible to this tier of cool kid. These involve minimal motion and embarassment, or at the very least this is the terrible secret that Arthur's movies have revealed to him. He moves slightly more rhythmically, at least, as if to some unseen beat. It probably looks stupid and kinda silly anyway, though.
<OOC> Arerth Rialth also fails at formatting.
ENTER A COMMAND:
"Oh, this was the.. stuff with the goop and stuff. I don't really understand it." Laer says, looking over the console, explaining to Cirno exactly how it works. Sort of. Not at all, really.
"I think they must have been making a whole lot of.. goop here? And maybe it could be made into those little minions somehow. I really shouldn't have put this off so long, I have no idea what's going on anymore." Laer admits to Cirno, at least.
Arthur, between commands, elaborates slightly. "Yeah, I can fly. Sorta. Rocket broom does the trick, mostly. It's not really me doing the flying, it's alchemy and whatever weird technowizardry is involved in that. So, functionally, I guess I can fly. I dunno, portals strike me as the… Spacey thing, I guess?" He shrugs, but then, flight! Oh man, now is the chance to look all around these tubes like a kid at a zoo. Arthur isn't sure what to examine first, though!
ENTER A COMMAND
Arthur doesn't have a "booze" accessible in his inventory!
ENTER A COMMAND
"Waiting for CS to come here so we can check and see if she has a chest in that crypt." Vruasa Telash explains to Arerth reflexively, without thinking about it. He stops tazing the imp that he's tazing, and looks towards Arerth properly. He frowns a little and looks around. How the hell did — oh right. Apparently if he doesn't want his privacy invaded at any given time, he should make sure any injured thing around him is /very dead/. Well, he needs grist anyway.
The knight jams his spear into the wounded imp's face and collects its grist off-handedly. Too late to do anything about Arerth though, so he just leans on his spear from there and asks her, "What are YOU doing? Are you so bored with making fancy clothes that the only thing you could think to do is come harass me the first time I started injuring things?"
"Or are you /concerned for my safety/?" He asks, with the full intent to offend.
Oh boy, this is going to go weird places. Now would be a good time for Future Vruasa to give him some advice to stop this ahead of time.
That would be helpful though, so it doesn't happen.
Arthur's presence isn't really important to Cirno where she is right now, though she also trusts that Tshall will make sure nothing happens to him. No worries, right? "Goop? What? Minion making?" Cirno looks a little puzzled, then shrugs, moving up to get a better look at the console.
Cirno proceeds to scan the console, then she does what any good scientist would do.
She fiddles with the controls.
Tapping the glass seems to provoke its inhabitant. A white, humanoid figure inside opens a pair of deep black eyes, then, mindlessly, starts slamming one fist against the glass. It's not gonna break any time soon, but the inhabitant isn't going to either. It looks like he's sort of going on autopilot; an examination of the motions would make them seem… Unpracticed, as if this is the first movement the figure has ever done.
"one I am in fact bored!!! two are you implying we are in $ome kind of red romance???" Arerth leans in closer, apparently completely unfazed by his sudden attempt to offend as she instead puts herself at eye level with Vruasa and creeeeps her face closer and closer.
"i$ that what you want???"
"Nah. Besides, everybody knows you're all flushed for PP, since he's the only other guy of decent breeding around here. Unless you count fishface, which I do because it lets me laugh myself to sleep." Vruasa replies to Arerth without missing a beat, leaning a bit further on his spear.
Meanwhile, fiddling with the controls is fairly simple. It looks like, when one presses either button, a green slime substance flashes into existance in the container. Unlike the other facility, this seals the container (large enough for, a large soda) against summoning more slime until it's removed from the mechanism and replaced with one of the spares. The slime itself is accessible from within the containers, once the container itself is opened.
There is no VISIBLE difference between one color controls' slime and the other color. Each seem to be buttons that have been worn down from very, very regular use.
Tshallandria reaches for the glass, and at the same time says something barely intelligable into her pendant… …A few seconds later, some sort of hovercraft can be heard driving up outside and then … the gem on her gauntlet glows … and the glass peels back from the container, and a moment later, the Queen of Hell moves to catch the fellow in white… …If they're unable to hold themselves. Which is probably likely. "…I suppose I'm probably supposed to say something snazzy and dramatic here."
She glances at Arthur, "You'll forgive me for not doing that, right?"
Really, there's only one thought that comes to Laer's mind when she sees the goop in the container appear as Cirno plays with it, and it's probably already on Cirno's mind, too.
"Hey, I bet you fifty gold we can trick someone into drinking a container of that."
Oh, this is a productive exploration team, right here.
"well it i$ kind of a fight between you and him being the only two noble$!!! be$ide$ $ale$man I mean!!!" Arerth retreats at the mention of the violet blood, squinting at Vruasa and looking like she is no longer cool and controlled and attempting to troll HIM. "ab$olutely not!!! I am officially declaring!!! violet blood to be even lower than ru$t!!! on the chart!!! and nobody can conte$t it!!!" Sometimes your whole home planet being gone is kind of a good thing.
Arerth hmphs and just kind of crosses her arms. "you are the wor$t!!! and on an unrelated note where is that girl??? $he is like $uper late!!!"
Arthur puts a finger to his lips. "It'll totally be our little secret, if anyone asks you said something hells kinds of cool while witnessing the… This thing." He gestures at what she's retrieved. Meanwhile, what she's retrieved has other ideas. While it's simple to remove it and keep hold of it, and Tshallandria even avoids getting any of the clear substance inside the tube on her. However, it is distinctly making ineffectual efforts to strike her. They seem insubstantial, though. Not really motivated by anything but instinct, and even that instinct is a bit half-hearted.
At the very least, the thing is breathing, and seems to have all its organs. Seems inordinately soft, like it's incomplete in construction, but overall doesn't look like it'll die or anything.
ENTER A COMMAND
Arthur can't be Hearts Boxcars because obviously Arerth is too busy being Red Stone!
ENTER A COMMAND
Arthur sets about doing some kind of percussive action against one of the nearby glass tubes. It makes a lot of noise against it and seems to wake up its upside-down inhabitant, who immediately begins to viciously pound against the glass at him, actively seeming hostile. It doesn't look like he's getting out soon despite that, though.
ENTER A COMMAND
"Salesman is so far away from nobility it's not even funny. Quit saying shit like that about him." Vruasa says, letting his spear return to his sylladex and folding his arms over his chest. Where the hell is CS, he wonders? Oh well, may as well keep trolling Arerth. He glances around a moment before he responds, "I am pretty sure that you can't do that seeing as how violet is higher than purple. Granted if he made an incredibly unpopular decision the pitchforks and torches would come out faster than that one rainbowdrinker FLARP convention where some asshole blew up like a third of the participants."
"And they say I took that shit too seriously." He rolls his eyes.
"That depends on who you want to get to drink it," Cirno points out. "Some of them are pretty dumb. But let's grab a few of these for analysis." Cirno would then captchalogue them, but she has no sylladex, so she just stows them in a bag instead. About a half-dozen, if she can manage it. "Well, I guess we'd better check out one of the other buildings. We have a lot of ground to cover! Maybe there's something more useful in the others."
Tshallandria looks at the creature, and … gently tries to restrain it. "Can you speak? Are you at least vaugely sentient?" She glances around the room, "…I think this one might not . Could you look around in the other tubes and see if you can find any who are more … well … finished?"
She pauses to look at Arthur, then chuckles, "Is that one more complete then? Or … Actually, what color is that one, does it look like this one?" A few moments later, a couple of people dressed in white enter the room, "Ah good… You're here. Do me a favor and check this one's vital signs."
The Spirograph Gate (explored months ago)
The Double Helix
Laer will follow after Cirno, stretching a bit. "Well. We should try to get that idiot to drink it, just for a little bit of revenge. Maybe it would burn his stomach from the inside out… Hey, you pick the next spot? That one was kind of lame, maybe you'll have more luck."
Looks like it's decided. "Okay, fractal it is. Let's see if we have to cut our way in." She doesn't expect to need to do that… most of the doors have just been open here. But hey, never hurts to be prepared! The fairy hefts the bag full of goop cannisters, then floats out toward the fractal-marked door to giveit a try.
Arthur yells down from above. "Black, looks like! This one seems angry. I dunno about completion or anything, but maybe. I don't know what a complete one looks like, though. Hehehe, you know, if I were any less cool about this it would probably be kinda scary for this guy to be trying to kill me right now or something." Arthur grins back down to Tshallandria, nervously. "I'll see if I can find one that's a bit less incomplete though, I guess I might know it when I see it."
Meanwhile, checking those vital signs would reveal a fairly standard human-level medical state; it looks like it's not even excited by this, despite the half-hearted attempts at violence. It seems like it's been nourished and such for the time it's been here.
ENTER A COMMAND
"you are trying to pi$ me off and it will not work!!!" Funny, it seems to be working pretty well. "I am totally the only legitimate!!! queen here and finface is nothing but a wannabe!!! but for all I care!!! they can have the $ea or whatever and pretend to rule over the magical underwater kingdom$!!! while I rule the important ground $tuff!!!"
Fuss fuss. Arerth does not speak of the salesman any more, instead choosing to pull an object out of her sylladex to show it to Vruasa. It's a GOLD DRAGON SCALE.
"anyway look what I found la$t night!!!"
Tshallandria chuckles, "Arthur, I really doubt that one … or for that matter anything here that's not shaped like a monster is going to be that much of a challenge for you… …But I should probably get the black one decanted too and in the hands of a medical team, now that it's woken up as well. …It wouldn't be a good idea to leave it laying about, all woken up, I suppose."
She gestures to a medic, "Get a sample of that fluid too… Maybe a science team down here to try and figure this stuff out…" A frown as she flies over to the black one, and once again the gem on the palm of her gauntlet glows and the glass peels back. "You there. Calm down."
"I noticed. I am completely failing to rile you up. Surely there are no bounds to your majestic patience." Vruasa answers, without a trace of sarcasm. He is being sarcastic but he's /really/ good at it. He shrugs faintly though. It is true that there are more land dwelling trolls in their session than sea-dwellers, and the one sea-dweller they have is hardly a match for the rest. Still, it seems like this is going to have to come to a head eventually, and it might not… strictly speaking… be a good thing if he aggravates the issue so much that it explodes early.
It'll wait until later.
His attention turns towards the gold scale, which is pretty impressive looking. The knight moves his shades down his nose to get a good look at it and then decides, "Whatever you alchemize that thing with is going to kick all kinds of ass, I bet. Looks like it came from something fucking enormous. Like my lusus."
Vruasa is privately glad that his Centiserpent Lusisprite is not gold. That would be cause for alarm in this particular circumstance. He also wishes he'd thought to take a few scales before prototyping him. Damn.
Fiora wanders up behind Vruasa, staring between Arerth and Vruasa, and looking…
"You brought her?" She asks, wearing her DRESDEN'S ENVY sleuthing clothes. A crisp black fedora with silver hatband, a long black trenchcoat with silver buttons, under which is a grey button-down shirt and a black tie, with a pair of black slacks and shiny black dress shoes. Her eyes seem a bit… darker then usual. Is she wearing makeup? She's totally not. Why would you even think that? You must be joking. Her eyes have always been this dark. She wanders towards the pair of trolls as…
IS THAT… VRUASA INSPECTING ARERTH? IS HE LEANING IN TO BECOME INTIMATE WITH HER?! LOWERING HIS SHADES?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?
She stops dead in her steps, a few feet behind Vruasa, and…
Tilting her hat down to obfuscate her face. Oh. She sees how it is.
The fractal building seems to be a travel hub of some kind! One that's familiar in design to Laer; this one, however, has many more transportalizers than the one she's encountered before had, and seems generally more elaborate. A massive screen on one wall displays a series of error screens, all of which seem to concern the fact that the natural anti-teleportation mechanisms of the Confederacy are currently blocking incoming transportalizations. It also repeatedly seems to be asking for confirmation or denial of a preemptive "Reckoning", stating that its destination hasn't been reached despite having experienced a portal event.
This seems to have shut down many of its systems, though not irreversably. Where these transportalizers go to or come from is another matter entirely, though. Additionally, it looks like there was another office workspace here that has fallen onto the ceiling and made a mess.Using those transportalizers is likely to be difficult while the room is upside down.
Laer looks around and hmmms to herself as she spots the transportalizers. "Oh, this is… these are to transport around and stuff. But it looks like they might be broken."
This is not at all Laer's fault, of course, and any attempts to blame her shall surely be fruitless.
"We could probably fix it, but that might cause more problems than it's worth. Up to you." She offers to Cirno.
"my patience is endle$, damn $traight!!!"
She removes the golden ring she's wearing around one finger, and then shoves the scale back into her captcha deck. Then she puts the ring back on.
"well if you want to try doing $omething with it$ code that'$ fine, I gue$ I benefit from having you kick a$ too, but yeah I got thi$ thing at that place the faction$ fight over that ha$ ton$ of dragon egg$ and dragon$ everywhere!!!" She got caught in a fight, but managed to get out due to being royalty. K4 was very reasonable!
Then she spots the girl behind Vruasa.
"oh hello you are late but good of you to join u$!!! and without Tho$e Thing$ thi$ time too"
"I'll put it on my todo list," Cirno says lazily. She pokes at one of the pads with her foot, then frowns again. "Maybe I can get transporters for my ship out of these. Depends on how they work. What's this Reckoning thing it's complaining about? Wonder if we could shut it up." Cirnoisn'tliking the sound of 'reckoning' though, so she's going to see if she can tap the 'deny' button.
"Nope. She c@me on her own while I was w@iting for you." Vruasa says to Fiora, without even bothering to look behind him. He pushes his sunglasses up his face again. Fact of the matter is that he doesn't have the cultural knowledge of humans required to understand how this looks to CS, so he doesn't even think that this could possibly be a problem. He adds, "I tried to tell you, but I guess you were @lready @w@y from your computer by the time I s@id it." This is probably not the correct thing to say, but again that escapes him. Hey, that is a pretty cool way to wear a hat.
He makes a note to do it sometime to look ominous.
Taking a moment to clear his throat, and try to speak without stressing his A's and AT's too much. It is only partially successful, "Anyway, you can use the scale first. It's one of your trophies, and anyway it probably costs a ridiculous amount of grist to replicate. I've already spent a lot making myself new armor and upgrading my spear." Admittedly, he really would like to know what the scale could do for an item. But Vruasa does have /some/ sense of decency when it comes to things like that.
"Shall we get going, then?" He asks Fiora, focusing on her properly now. His expression falls after a moment, his trollPhone shades vibrating loudly. Holding up one hand he says, "Hang on a sec."
Future deusexLongcoat [FDL] began trolling deusexLongcoat [DL].
FDL: h@h@H@H@H@H@FDL: HA
FDL: this is just hil@rious in hindsight
Vruasa slooooowly reaches up and shuts off his trollPhone shades, looking disgruntled. "Okay," He says, "now that that's over with let's go." And takes the opportunity to start heading towards a convenient external landi…ng.
"I'm the only one with an aerial vehicle, aren't I." He voices, with trepidation.
shallandria's demand for this glass-encased fellow to calm down is responded to with a mean right hook. Or, well, if the carapaced fellow inside were punching something besides a queen of hell, it would be a mean right hook. His own carapace, indicating that he's less soft, will crunch weakly against Tshallandria should she so elect to dramatically tank the punch. And meanwhile the fellow, along with the clear contents of his tube, is likely to fall out. He seems to be swearing, but also seems to be pronouncing the curse words wildly incorrectly. This one seems slightly more developed, but only to a marginally increased degree.
Elsewhere on that meteor, it looks like Cirno has the tech savvy to dispell the obtuse and inscrutible error messages through assorted IT-fu. It's actually almost as if someone designed this to be absurdly difficult to use. Given the way everything else works, that's not unexpected. But the problems are, indeed, dealt with. The console allows Cirno to turn any of the transportalizers on and off, though not, unfortunately, to see where they go, and it seems the Ministry of Knowledge's own anti-teleportation mechanisms are preventing it from getting a proper "fix". With proper adjustments, it might work! Though it'll take some time, and would probably best be done in a manner not narratively described in a granular method in the course of collaborative storytelling, which is to say, off of the screen.
"I don't need a ride!!! I ju$t need you to injure $omething once you're there or $omething really it'$ le$ awkward than riding with you!!!" Not that she particularily minds, rocket spear travel has its charms. Well, flying has its charms. She wishes she could fly. But whips don't make very good rocket weapons, no.
"or whatever I gue$ we'll just have to cling to you like we are engaged in $ome $ick three-way redrom ugh" What a horrible travesty of a redrom, that.
"You know there were a whole bunch of those meteors out there." Laer comments idly. "And it was really, really easy to teleport this one. We could have probably teleported a whole bunch of them into Cirrus Marine when we were attacking the city. Shame I didn't think of that then. Want to look somewhere else for a while?" Laer offers, clearly a little bit bored and fidgety.
Tshallandria so elects to tank with her face. "Now look what you've done, you've broken your hand. On the other hand, I do like your attitude… Wake up to find something you don't like. Try and change it…" Her eyes glow briefly, a dull infernal red. "But there's a limit to your personal power, and I." The entire facility seems to tremble at her words, "Am beyond your personal power."
The moment passes and she gently sets him on a stretcher, "However, because I like you, and your desire to change to things… …I will offer you a deal, provided you are … willing to bargain, and wishing to prosper."
"Sure, whatever," Cirno replies after getting rid of the error message. "Who MAKES this stuff? It's a little weird that we haven't seen any sign of who could… I mean, SkaiaNet seem…" She trails off, then shrugs. "We'll see what we can do about these things later. Let's look at that helix thing, that should be interesting."
Fiora's jauntily angled hat hides her watery eyes. It does not, however, hide her wavering lip as she bites it gently, before turning to the side and crossing her arms. "Oh. Well then. I mean, if she's here already then there's nothing we can do about it." She mutters.
Nothing but take a pen and jam it in her creepy fucking eyes and watch her bleed out like a stuck pig and just stab her over and over and over laughing the whole time it'd be okay it'd only be a small faux pass for trolls, they're not even friends they're enemies and they fight constantly it'd really be like a big favor to kill that annoying bitch really that's all that there is to it she'll just have to kill h-
"Yeah." She says with a start, her head snapping back to Vruasa as she fixes her hat with a hand, wiping her eyes with her black sleeve. It's good she is wearing black, or she'd be smearing TOTALLY NOT MAKEUP all over it. Well, she didn't go overboard on the TOTALLY NOT MAKEUP in the first place, it was just a little mascara to darken her eyes a bit I mean that's totally normal you want to look good when you go out with a friend killing horrible monsters and getting treasure it's not at all romantic with a race of violence-focused and utterly fascinating creatures who remind you of all your childhood fantasies of dark broody antiheroes who are somehow-
She claps her hands on her cheeks a bit, forcing a light smile. Keep it together, Fiora!
Arerth ==> MAKE SHIT WORSE
"I am not holding on to her and she is so not holding on to me though I mean if you'd be okay with me… holding… you… while we fly to the place, I mean… you know where it is and that'd be really nice and…" She stammers quietly, looking away. "Then we can stab something and /she/ can tag along too. If she wants. She doesn't have to."
It looks like the more complete carapacian is useless. All it seems to be able to do is function at a child's intellectual level of hostility, and swear loudly. Though there's been a generous offer made, it seems that this, too, is not sufficiently complete for Tshallandria to begin making deals with them! She would, at the very least, be aware of this much; it might also give her some initial hints to the growth process here.
Meanwhile, the double-helix building is much more simple. There's just one large tube full of clear substance, a console with one large, screen and one large green button, a slot for those containers Cirno and Laer made and picked up, and what looks like a track system leading towards the chesspiece-labeled building, leading away from that tank!
Meanwhile, Arthur does his best to look about the room, but unfortunately, it looks like he's not able to find a more complete individual residing in these tanks! It looks like some other sort of mechanism of dealing with the problem of lacking a sufficiently matured carapacian will have to be found, or at the very least permitting one to mature over time. "Sorry! Doesn't look like there's one here that isn't some weird… I dunno, soft state or whatever you call being half-made."
ENTER A COMMAND
Laer will walk into the building, and without messing with anything else, she'll hit the green button.
In keeping with her normal habit with technology, rather than hitting it once, she hits it like twelve times.
"I wonder what this does?" She asks Cirno, after hitting it that dozen times.
Tshallandria … frowns. "I suppose we'll need to find one that's more complete then that… …It seems as if… Well. The first one wasn't completed enough to really be all that … smart." She looks at the other one, and gestures for the medics to take it away, "..It would make sense then that they're programmed once they're fully complete, and this is what lets them know as much as they need to… …Or something to that effect."
Her eyes narrow slightly, "We'll have to go farther in, and see what we can find," And with those words, the callwords of the day are, deeper in!
Sigh. Hitting the button like that is not something Cirno would encourage, but with this weird world, who knows? The fairy digs out some of those cannisters and hands one over. "Hey, maybe we should actually like… use these. Isn't that what it's for? It looks like they'll fit." When in doubt just do shit.
"Stop implying that we are anywhere near redrom before I vomit and ruin your fetch modus forever." Vruasa replies to Arerth. This is probably an empty threat but there's really no telling for certain. He's actually starting to get really uncomfortable with this situation. Maybe… maybe he could just combine his spear with his ROCKET ARMOR so he could just… just… god dammit there is no easy solution. He throws his hands up exasperatedly. There is no way he's not venting to PB later, this situation is just so full of bullshit that he doesn't know how to deal with.
Apparently growing up is hard.
Fiora stops tilting her hat in a spectacularly awesome way for reasons that Vruasa doesn't understand, and finally interjects to object to various. Things. This would have been way easier if he'd just… invited Arerth later so she couldn't be here early. Or something like that. Or maybe, maybe… thinking about this too much. ACCELERATE?
======> Vruasa: Don't accelerate.
"I'm investing in a rocket board or something once I have the grist." He declares, opening a nearby window and drawing his spear from his sylladex. He sets it down with the spearhead aimed up out of the window at an angle, and climbs onto the middle of it. This doesn't look as silly as it sounds, but the combination of the three of them probably will. A vague gesture is made towards Arerth and Fiora.
"One in front, one in the back, no heckling or I will have an aneurysm." They're going to look like some freak of a family on a horrible rocket-powered tandem bike.
Arerth vaguely notices Fiora's weird behavior, although she can't make much sense of it just yet. Humans have such a primitive relationship system that it actually becomes complicated for a troll to properly grasp. CAN something be so primitive it becomes complex? That's the idea, anyway.
"I don't really care one way or the other, I gue$ I could $tep out if you two want to make it a date!!! or $omething, but either way$ you know my job i$ to $tand back and ju$t kind of healbot, ugh, fucking random cla$ attribution" She'd rather be a Knight or something. That'd be way cooler.
Either ways she waits for Fiora to pick her seat.
She is curious.
"We need to get your chest there too anyway. Assuming there is one." Vruasa argues back at Arerth, because he doesn't want her to actually be able to determine this is a date. He's still not really comfortable with the idea even though he is trying to come to grips with it in a context that doesn't make Fiora physically ill again.
This is the worst.
As is fairly predictable, error messages pop up in bright red on the marge monitor as the button is hit rapidly, up until the point where Cirno inserts one of the containers. this has the fairly logical result of causing the tube to flash; abruptly, there's a thin, almost skeletal white form inhabiting the interior. It looks incredibly delicate, and drifts awkwardly in the substance. The container is suddenly drained of goop and disconnected from the machine. The whole tank begins to move along the track-setup along the meteor towards the chesspiece building… And it's replaced at the double-helix one, a new one rising from the floor.
Laer seems to consider that for a moment, looking relatively impressed as they get a prospitan soldier… Hmm.
"It's a grist factory!" Laer finally says after a moment, sounding absolutely thrilled. There may be some sort of assembly line spud murder going on shortly if the bard has her way.
Tshallandria's going deeper is interrupted! It is interrupted by the fact that what originally looked like the way "deeper" in is actually the entry to a track system, which now appears to be delivering, to this room, a new example of these Carapacians! It looks like it was just made a few seconds ago! It emerges through the automatically-opening doors and then comes to rest in what looks like a pre-arranged spot on the floor (ceiling).
Fiora looks slightly confused as well. This whole thing was a giant fucking cluster of terribleness all because of HER. That… That… UUUUUURGH!
Just looking at Arerth made Fiora's blood boil, how she was ruining everything, how this was all wrong ho-
BLUH BLUH BLUH BLUH BLUH! BBBBBBBBBBBBBLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!1!!!!11!1!!!111
Choice the first: Get Intimate with Vruasa's front… Or his back. But her MORTAL ENEMY god she wants to stab that bitch so badly would take the other spot.
She tilts her hat down again as she looks up, staring into the sky of Arthur's planet, or rather, her hat brim as her hand and hat hide her face once more.
Why? This was supposed to be their night to explore and talk. Why?
She looks back down, her hand falling before being jammed back into her pocket.
"Front." She mutters, walking forward a bit.
Up to Vruasa.
"H-how are we supposed to do th-this?" She stammers quietly, her cheeks beet red.
"you get on hi$ thing and hold on tight!!!"
Arerth helpfully demonstrates by getting on the spear and vaguely holding onto Vruasa from behind. "oh yeah you $hould be careful $itting in front, DL ha$ wandering hand$!!!"
Arerth: Consider not making things worse for once.
Hahaha what are you kidding? This is amazing.
"Just sit down in front of me, it's going to be awkward until we take off. Also let me steer and lean with me. You too RS." Vruasa is actually convinced that it would be /intensely unsafe/ for him to do this in fast forward. He wouldn't have time to react to directional changes made by inexperienced riders if something went wrong. Which means that he has to endure this godawful tandem rocket ride of shame in realtime and remember it forever. God fucking dammit he can't wait to be future him so he can look back at himself and laugh. Actually that sounds pretty good.
Aaaaand RS makes everything worse.
"Your ancestor was a rustblood." He retorts, without missing a beat. God that was a lame retort.
"Hey it needs the stuff," Cirno points out. She pokes around at the tube a little bit. "Also there may be limited supply or energy or something. But it'sstill pretty cool."
The fairyflutters a bit, then considers. "We still haven't checkedout that radio building. What say we see what it does? There might be something more useful in there. Funny though… all these installations on a meteor…"
The radio-marked building looks to be what was, at one point, a combination communications area, information processing area, and residential/recreational area. It seems broken up into three interconnected rooms, each expressing these purposes. The first area is the information processing one; it looks like there are massive banks of servers here, and a few computers. The communications area is a massive screen and just a few buttons, with a few simple metal chairs nearby. And the recreation/residental area is akin to an extremely cramped dorm area made for boring people who know how to clean up after themselves. It looks like there are actually a lot of bookshelves, tables, and chairs here, and some very small personal rooms for sleeping and such.
Fiora's SLEUTHY TELESPECS are drawn from her inside coat pocket and put on. They look like very classy glasses. They look slightly overdesigned, but they fit her whole getup well.
They're also a little thick and black-rimmed.
Fiora looks, with her glasses, at Arerth when she puts hands on Vruasa, and cuddles up, and opens her mouth. Fiora's hatred boils over for the Troll girl. Her embarrasment is forgotten as she tilts her nose up, her eyes dark and shrouded by her hat and glasses as she points a finger rather imperiously at Arerth.
Fiora ==> Unleash the Fury
"Shut the hell up, hate-harlot, before I drag you over into a corner and commit what can only be described as a Troll faux pass of the highest calibur when I warm up to killing meaningless underlings by staining my hands with bitchy alien blood. I can trust /his/ hands to not wander, but if your /damnable/ mouth wanders one more time we will have words. And by words I mean I will drive a /fucking/ pen down your throat and see if you can teleport somewhere where someone cares what you have to say." She breathes angrily.
She then blinks.
Then she sits down in front of Vruasa.
Her hands shake a bit as she grips white-knuckled to the rocket spear and her face drains of color.
She might have just Fucked Up Royal. OhgodOhgodOhgodOhgodOhgodOhgodOhgod.
"Nope. Nope nope nope. This is not going there. Not letting it happen." Vruasa declares, the very /instant/ Fiora seats herself. He grabs her around the middle with one arm and uses the other to flip the 'use' switch on the rocket spear.
Yes, he is specifically putting them in a position where actually fighting is incredibly impractical and dangerous in the hopes that it will somehow dissuade this from going past words.
======> Vruasa: ACCELERATE?
Arerth stares at Fiora. It's an intense occular throwdown and she looks extraordinarily displeased even by her usually displeased standards.
It absolutely does not matter if that is when Vruasa takes off like a boss, Arerth continues staring at Fiora even as they fly. And it's only mid-flight that she begins shouting back.
"IN MY GRAND ROYAL FIT OF PATIENCE!!! I WILL ALLOW YOU THIS ONE VICTORY!!! IN RE$PECT OF YOUR VERBAL THROWDOWN ABILITIE$!!! BUT ONLY THI$ ONCE $O YOU BETTER BE GRATEFUL!!!"
It is her way of admitting defeat.
Pissed or not, Arerth can respect someone who can shout like that. It's a trait of nobility, after all. Whether or not it's coming from a human.
And just like that, Tshallandria grabs Arthur (If neccesary) and pulls him out of the way of the speeding 'crustacean'. "…Well now. It seems that the others have found the control pannel for this system… But … I suspsect we're going to be so much better off, Not flying down that passageway…" She eyes it for a moment, and then the new Prospitan.
She turns back to Arthur after a moment, "Would you like to join Laer and Cirno now?"
"You know, this thing must have been expensive as all hell to equip out." Laer says as she heads into the radio area, looking around within it, and…Buttons!
She'll press at a few of them, hopefully not engaging the self-destruct or anything cliched and hackneyed like that.
"I could kind of use a nap. But these are really crapped beds, so maybe later." Laer says, in spite of not actually having to sleep as an elf.
Arthur shrugs. "Besides a bunch of half-guys, I dunno what else there is to do here. Unless you have some time power, it looks like we'd be here a while if we wanted to do something. I guess there's no problem seeing what those two are up to, sure." He says, grinning, eying the tank that just moved in a little before heading for the door.
ENTER A COMMAND
"QUIT SHOUTING IN MY EAR." Vruasa complains to Arerth, inadvertantly shouting in Fiora's ear. He decides to shut up very shortly thereafter and get on with the business of GETTING WHERE THEY'RE GOING. Now that they've actually taken off and started moving that is pretty easy. From here it's a pretty short distance via gate, and from there you just go straight through the entrance and down the middle. Normally this would be incredibly impractical and dangerous, but last time they were here Psyber used his ROCKET HAMMER to destroy like thirty floors and go straight to the basement.
Hopefully the floors have not spontaneously rebuilt themselves or something or this is going to be a rough landing. RoughER, that is.
"I can see I'm going to have to keep you interested somehow," Cirno says with her tongue poking out. She resists the childish urge to fiddle with buttons aimlessly and instead floats up to the servers, to see if she can get anything useful out of them. In this case, maybe some music recordings for Laer.
WHITE KNUCKLED FLYING IS BEST FLYING.
Oh my god that bitch is yelling at her. But her LASS FURY gauge is totally empty! That last verbal special attack drained the gauge entirely and she is currently suffering from CRIPPLING DOUBT.
Also they're flying super fast and Arerth is yelling at her from just far enough away the wind steals the words away. Please don't let her have started Shit. She doesn't WANT to have started Shit. In fact, this is why she hated interacting with people! She would be all shy and a huge failure then flip out and scream at them and stuff. It was terrible she should just calm down but sometimes she got so ANGRY!
She checks, via SLEUTHY TELESPECS, with Vruasa what the crap happened.
Then her ear is shouted into.
Worst Date Ever.
THE LAND OF SPIRES AND FROGS
From all parts of the planet's surface, massive stone spires can be seen at various distances and at various heights, interconnected by irregularly-shaped stone bridges. It's not clear what's at the top, but various natural structures and openings dot the sides of these spires. It is clear from experienced observation that while there are spires above, there are also spires below; all surface area seems to be on top of these spires, including the current surface.
This spire is one of the more unusual ones, though. Unlike the spires previously seen, this one is entirely stone; there is not an inch of the massive thing that is not made of solid rock. Another clearly unusual thing is the fact that the spire seems to only have a single feature, and otherwise appears to be smooth and without any of the forests, huts, or other similar features most spires in the Land of Spires and Frogs seem to contain. The only thing that can be seen is a single entryway, carved ornately and marked with a variety of symbols that require examination for any substantial description. It is surrounded on each side by what look like large, carved frogs. Each stand in a stoic sort way, sitting straight up. A pair of lilypad-styled pedistals sit, each marked with a familiar-looking spirographic gate pattern below them. This small entryway seems to lead directly down into the spire itself, moving to a stairway that heads down.
The frogs are clearly marked with past efforts to deface them. These appear to have been ineffective, because the frogs are still there.
Below, the staircase leads to something rather less claustrophobic than one usually expects something called catacombs to be. In fact, it's larger than one expects most interiors to be, period. It's a massive chamber running up and down the spire, the stairs at the entryway forming a spiral staircase around a central pillar that seems to be composed of solid, dark-green crystaline material. Around the crystaline tewer-pillar, meeting the stairs at awkward angles, are bridges; these lead to ledges that circle the interior of the spire all around its circumference. There are many, many levels of this; at least a few dozen. From the stairs, one can see carvings, and what look like containers, about the size of the local iguanas, lining the walls. From this distance, one can see that, at the very least, they are not in that obtuse symbol language. Many of the containers have been smashed open by blunt force.
This is, at least, the case for the several levels that are immediately visible upon entering. It looks like an informative and possibly valuable location, almost excessively so, at first glance, though. Unfortunately, no (un)helpful Iguanas here to harass; one wonders how upkeep is done. The staircase extends farther down around the Tewer-core tube, to other areas. Levels 1-10 are IMMEDIATELY ACCESSIBLE. There's a PASSAGE ABOVE to the EXTERIOR. There are STAIRS leading DOWN. There are NO ENEMIES, or ANY OTHER ENTITIES OF SUCH NATURE, in startling defiance of crypt tradition. There is a small quantity of GRIST here, spread out among the levels; whatever used to be here didn't much care for crypt tradition either and decided to do a lot of murdering to get rid of Underlings around here. Someone else came by and picked up most of the grist.
Well, if the first place you go to find dead people is a crypt, this is a fair place to start. No shortage of dead things here, presumably in those container.
Levels 11-20 are a different matter; these seem to be more dedicated to complex rituals concerning the dead. Each of these seem heavily laden with tools and tables, but some of them appear to contain records; it looks like an archive of the permanent residents of the crypt, and things they had on them. Alongside this seems to be some sort of treasure chest construction area, meant for dispersing chests among the interred. It looks li
Levels 11-20 are a different matter; these seem to be more dedicated to complex rituals concerning the dead. Each of these seem heavily laden with tools and tables, but some of them appear to contain records; it looks like an archive of the permanent residents of the crypt, and things they had on them. Alongside this seems to be some sort of treasure chest construction area, meant for dispersing chests among the interred. It looks like the sort of place where massive cliches must be produced and put into place.
Yet further down, the glint of light on metal, dim as it might be in these darker depths, can be seen. The archives seem just slightly ransacked, as if someone was partially through a more thorough pillaging and didn't quite get done. The shelves full of scrolls are partially left pristine and partially left a giant mess. The crafting area for containers looks like it may have some mechanical knowledge to impart upon those so inclined, but it's otherwise unremarkable.
There is more GRIST here, the result of many UNDERLING DEATHS and a subsequent PLUNDERING. There are more TOMB-CONTAINERS, left more isolated; potentially these are of higher priority or something like that. There are no ACTIVE ENEMIES. Stairs lead ABOVE and BELOW.
All this speeds by because Vruasa lands on the LEVEL 40, the ground floor, where the catacombs stop. Levels 31-40 are clearly all dedicated to only one corpse, because while that little container on level 35 is about the size of one of the Iguanas, it's fairly clear that the surroundings are all dedicated to him. The carvings seem to be entirely dedicated to describing and defining large quantities of steel that was in possession of this one iguana when he died, and doesn't seem to be discussing anything regarding his history or substantial importance.
This tomb is surrounded by a whole lot of chests, all marked with a whole lot of symbols. Some would look familiar to others, but they aren't to Vruasa; the Heaven and Hell logo (plundered), that old hand gripping a gear, a pixelated power-button, a claw moving over a lute, one or the other half of a pokeball, and others. A few would strike him as familiar; one looks like a stylized representation of Black Gold Saw's horns. Another is that familiar Time gear (plundered), while there are ones marked with the reverse-Borjgali whirl of Space, one with the hollow whirl of Void, two with symbols of Life and Hope each, and a distinct one separated from the others marked with a spiked skull-like symbol of Doom.
There's also clear signs of habitation, which is to say it looks like some people were throwing trash down here from some place up above. Someone messy, or a large group, was living on level 30.
Tshallandria's blade clears it's sheath again, and once more she swings down through the air with a tearing noise, opening a porthole to the other two women, "You're right… We should get some techs in here to look things over, and go from there…" She frowns, "On the other hand, we've received several attempts by people to teleport here… Perhaps we can backtrace them…" A shrug as she gestures for Arthur to go through. "…We'll figure something out, Of that I'm certain."
While walking, Arthur looks up from the meteor. It's just a normal sky, of course, there's nothing of note here. But for some reason… For some reason Arthur feels like he should be hearing a song when he looks up there. He's not sure how or why, but for some reason being on this meteor makes him feel like he's supposed to be closer to something in the sky. It gives him reason to pause, and stand still, looking up from the top of the meteor to the empty space above. He feels like something's not there that should be. Or maybe that "there" has shifted; what was, at one point, in the Veil has been moved, after all. What Arthur doesn't know is that he's trying his best to listen to a song he's heard in his sleep his whole life.
Listen, you joker, we JUST GOT DONE being that guy! It took a lot of effort to not be that guy! Give that guy a rest for a little, will ya?
ENTER A COMMAND
Meanwhile, Laer's button-pushing gets a lot of nothing. This radio computer program appears to be a copy of Skaipe, the primary inter-meteor communication mechanism of the VeilNet! But Laer, according to this program, currently has ZERO FRIENDS on her friends list. Despite this fact, it looks like someone is video-calling Laer now that this meteor's stopped being idle for several weeks.
Cirno, on the other hand, will potentially find those servers pretty interesting! It looks like these contain massive numbers of records concerning that cloning she was just part of, among other things. It appears that thousands of clones were created in the span of a few months, most of which matured and were fully processed, from the date of April 13th to one day before the date Laer visited the meteor and teleported it into a parking lot. It also seems to list substantial quantities of weapons and vehicles stored elsewhere in the meteor, most of which were removed the day before teleportation but some of which are still on-site.
Arthur snaps out of his daze a short while after a full awkward silence has been established, shaking his head and saying, "Er, sorry about that, got distracted by… Stuff. Okay, let's go see what's going on over there." And so, from that exterior point, he heads through the portal and to that radio room area.
ENTER A COMMAND
As soon as Arthur steps through the porthole to Laer and Cirno, so does Tshallandria. "Hello Ladies. Have the two of you found anything interesting, and preferably not likely to explode?" A pause, "Well… You had a nostalgic look on your face, did you remember something that you'd forgotten?"
Apparently the REST OF THE FLIGHT goes without too much trouble comparatively, until they finally land and Arerth is all too happy to get off Vruasa's spear and dust herself a bit, covering her shades with her eyes to hide the shame of losing a verbal throwdown with a red-blooded human. Oh wait they're all red-blooded. Whatever.
"okay well we're here now and you totally just $kipped a huge part of the dungeon by landing u$ here $o what i$ the plan exactly???"
Either ways Arerth produces her TRUSTY BLACK BARBED WHIP, by which we mean that she grabs it off her waist and unrolls it with a crack against the nearby wall. This place looks HUGE, and it sounds like Vruasa already knows his way around, kind of, so she'll defer to his knowledge for now.
The others are coming, but Cirno isn't worried about that. Arthur is a pretty cool dude, for a human, and Tshall is nifty. Sooo… she just flips through a few and then blinks, trying to pull up where the other equipment is. "Hey. Hey Laer. I think there might be some weapons and stuff left on here. I think it was meant to make an army for some kind of war."
One shouldn't just go turning on video chat to random people and causing bad things and getting caught stealing meteors and all. No, the safe thing to do is refuse to answer the video chat request and just walk awa…
Whoops. There goes Laer answering it, not at all sure what she expects to see on the other end of the video chat call.
Honestly, this really doesn't even count as a date. Or a hate date. Which is good because Vruasa really couldn't handle both a hate date and a regular date. He's already really uncomfortable with either concept individually, combining them is basically a gigantic drum of oil next to lit matches. Now that they have SKIPPED MOST OF THE DUNGEON and this has been remarked upon, the Knight gets up off of the landed rocket spear and shakes his head. Once everybody is off of it he returns it to his sylladex and says, "Something already rampaged through here earlier and killed all the underlings. We don't know what it was. We're here to check and see if you and CS have a chest down here. Everybody else did, you know."
Kind of takes the challenge out of it, though.
"Whatever, we can go topside and find some enemies afterwards. CS needs the experience anyway. Right now though, you two need to find your chest." He points towards the crypt they landed nearest. The one with the single tomb, and the many chests arranged around it. The one with his symbol on it has already been opened, so there's no real point in looking for his own, though…
Vruasa wanders ahead of the other two, towards the frog chest. He tries to open it again, not really /expecting/ it to yield this time, but figuring there's probably no harm in trying. It doesn't seem to belong to anybody in particular, though simply by having a frog on it one suspects that it is probably plot-relevant to this world.
… Speaking of relevant things.
"Sorry about the rough landing." He remarks to Fiora and Arerth, absent-mindedly. Okay, so maybe he just wants an excuse not to hyperfocus on one or both of them.
Cirno finds her gun locations, alright; it looks like they're over in that spirograph building, which is where the armory seems to be. It looks like the vehicles are there too! Whatever those are; it might have only now occurred to the narratorthat she's never encountered one of those shuttles.
The call itself, on the large screen, seems to occupy it all at once; whoever BQ is, she's clearly important in some way! And her call is quite terse. "Oh." Says the voice presumably belonging to the large pair of bright white shining eyes hidden slightly under a black cloche hat on a carapaced black head. "That's why it's active again." She terminates the call, but not before Laer might get the chance to get a username that Laer might later contact at her own leisure, to question at. Assuming she can do so without being blocked, it might be a simple way to get some answers. For now, BQ has gone offline on Skaipe, though.
"Stop fooling around with voice chat and let's see what kind of stuff's in the armory," Cirno suggests, missing the brief conversation utterly. Oh well. Can't pick up on everything. "The main building has weapons and stuff. Probably crappy, since these guys can't seem to fight much of a war even with their awesome technology, but worth checking out."
Mysteriously, Vruasa chooses to leave the frog chest alone. He looks just the tiniest bit agitated. He looks around at the other chests to see what symbols are there.
"yeah okay that make$ $en$e" Arerth says as she walks after Vruasa, taking in the sights of the dungeon and wondering just how much they skipped over and if it's worth backtracking for it. Well, the sight of all those CHESTS is enough to take her mind off the dungeon and off the annoying girl Vruasa seems to be developing feelings for and vice versa.
The troll regards the frog chest for a moment, getting close to it and trying to open it just to see if it's a case of Vruasa sucking at opening chests about as much as he sucks at being nice. If that doesn't work, she writes the thing off entirely, looking at the other chests instead.
"$o ba$ically you dragged u$ to like the trea$ure room for free loot"
An assessment of the chests mgight be useful to Vruasa. A blocky-looking pickaxe is one; a pair of snakes circling around a trident is also featured. Yet another can be seen, a heart-looking symbol with one half seeming to be an outline. Another is what looks like a pair of wings made of icicles, there's a tower overlapping a musical note, a large crown with a pair of horns emerging from it, one that bears a single eye, and a wide variety of others.
You can't remember what you never saw in the first place!
But maybe you can forget it. Which you seem to have already done. It strikes Arthur as something that DOESN'T MATTER. He shakes his head at Tshallandria's question, squinting his eyes closed. "Nah, nothing. Zoned out a little there, that's all. Hey! You found guns? That sounds awesome." He says, calling out to the pair that are currently at the radio room.
ENTER A COMMAND
"Leave the frog chest alone. Just take your own." Vruasa warns Arerth. He sounds surprisingly dire.
This is either critically warranted or a complete overreaction. He isn't sure which.
But he does start using his trollPhone shades to take pictures of the symbols and the status of the chests, and makes a point of beginning to root around whatever garbage has been left behind on the lowest level to see if there's any sign of "new" trash.
Tshallandria nods to Arthur, "Ah well… In any case, we should probably move on… …Now that it seems that Laer's coversation's been cut short, and Cirno has something for us to go look at, I suspect… …We should follow."
And suiting action to word, is exactly what Tshallandria does, she follows Cirno to the place of weapons!
Upon landing, Fiora starts looking around. "Okay, but… What symbol is mine?" She wonders, looking at the chests and their various symbols. "I mean…" She blushes again, hurrying to check the first chest. She glances at Vruasa, and makes sure to not catch Arerth's eye as she explores the catacomb cavern. "Um… I mean, CW said some stuff about me being a hero but I have no idea what to look for. A chest with… Nothing on it?" She asks the air.
"A chest with a fedora? I don't… know."
Fiora searches around, kicking at and pushing at chests.
She's kind of bad at this whole adventuring thing.
"We did!" Cirno calls back to Arthur. "They're in the other building though. And some other equipment, I haven't checked it out, though!" Cirno is, in fact, floating toward the door so she can do just that, waiting a moment for Laer to catch up if she wants.
Arthur doesn't really have much of a choice in the matter. It looks like someone's pestering him!
— deusexLongcoat [DL] began pestering profoundBadness [PB] at 21:37 —
DL: h@ve you ever h@d one of those d@ys you never w@nt to think @bout ever @g@in
DL: @nd i don't me@n 'pl@net blowing up' b@d i me@n
DL: 'riding on @ triple t@ndem bike' b@d
PB: Riding on ANY TANDEM BIKE immediately means TERRIBLE DAY, so I've AVOIDED THEM as BEST I CAN.
PB: But YEAH I think I've HAD DAYS like THAT.
DL: well right now i'm de@ling with CS @nd RS @ the s@me time
DL: bec@use RS just decided to show up
DL: @nd i think CS h@es her bec@use she doesn't w@nt to touch her or something for some re@son
DL: @nd future me
DL: is l@ughing @ me
PB: I guess you have SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO, I guess?
PB: Or look forward to LOOKING BACK TO, I dunno.
DL: well ye@h i'm sure this is hil@rious in hindsight
DL: when i'm not
DL: living it
PB: That's how a LOT OF THINGS are.
DL: in f@ct i'm sure p@st me thinks its funny too
DL: m@n i c@n't even f@st forw@rd p@st this bullshit
DL: do you know wh@ it's like to be @ble to TiVo through your own life @nd encounter @ situ@ion where you c@n't do th@
PB: I DON'T, no, but it SOUNDS BAD.
DL: i @m @ DL s@ndwich right now
PB: I have NO IDEA what the thing you just said MEANS.
PB: It SOUNDS HORRIBLE.
Please for the love of god ENTER A COMMAND to not have to thinkabout this
"I dunno," Vruasa says, turning his head towards Fiora, "but I think that a chest will only open if it's your chest. Unless you cheat somehow. I've thought about doing exactly that but…" He frowns, his vision focusing on trollian again. "… well, the last time I thought about it I checked to see what would happen and I basically saw a pile of bodies. So I decided not to."
"RS doesn't need more smelly things around her volcano anyway." He adds, scanning the room for a symbol that looks in keeping with the sort of thing he's seen in game before, but not quite what anyone else has. That one is /Space/, and his is obviously /Time/…
Vruasa decides to try something else. This involves trollian and not actually doing something physically, unfortunately, but somebody looking close enough can see what he's doing. PB will just have to endure more bullshit from him.
DL: hey mysterious voice telling me not to do things
DL: which chest is CS's
This totally won't make him look crazy.
It is intensely unfortunate that Fiora kicks several chests but not her own; it looks like, since she has yet to discover her symbol and the terrible gods of random chances decided that several iterations of a diceroll could not produce a one in four chance. Thus, for now, some sort of further examination of the situation may yet be required. She will need to find some other way of determining which of these belongs to her.
Efforts on Arerth's part to open the chest are initially unsuccessful, in the sense that the chest is locked. It doesn't look unbreakable, but it does look like it might need some substantial force to break it open. It may be worth giving more consideration, considering the other statements made.
"okay fine, $ure"
Arerth does not open the frog chest, and instead starts looking for hers, especially when she confirms the thing is locked tight anyway. She's not sure if she should be looking for a bitching snake or a hydra, or a space spiral, though, so she keeps an open mind.
Vruasa uses a simple PAINT-ESQUE program to note the chests that Fiora has failed to open. He goes down the line, and begins noting those that are obviously for other people. Nobody he knows carries a pickaxe, though that heart is familiar. He notes that down as probably belonging to PP Was that there before? The icicle wings are unfamiliar, as is the tower, though the crown with horns looks like the not-quite-a-troll lady. He notes these down as he goes, and stops to think. There's only /one/ for Space, and the other one that seems to represent the locale is for frogs.
There's /Life/, which he recognizes, and Hope…
"Hey, RS. Try to open the one with the space symbol. I have a hunch. I think the other Space player is unrepresented because this is his world. So the Frog chest is probably his." How did he know Arthur's element? IT IS A MYSTERY FOR THE AGES.
Unfortunately, he isn't having any luck helping poor CS, which is who he came here with to begin with. This is going to line up in a notably shitty way, isn't it.
Testing the space spiral reveals some odd things. Which is to say, it works! It seems the aspect overlap is producing some treasure glitches. In keeping with the themes of the crypt, a WEAPON MOD is recovered! It is the popper of a bullwhip, the fall, a piece of leather that may yet, when properly alchemized, yield useful mechanisms for when appropriate motions and the like are made with the whip itself, even if there is no contact.
Listening to DL yields success, and Arerth examines the whip part before captchaloguing it. This should come in handy, although she has no idea what she'll try and combine it with yet. She has a backlog of items to mess with!
With that done, Arerth also attempts to captchalogue the chest.
Because the thought of a chest only she can open is a great idea.
Fiora keeps kicking at things, though she stops after two more chests, just shaking her head. "It's fine, Telash, really. It is. I… sort of expected this." She smiles wearily, turning to the frog statue chest thing. "I mean, getting told you're the Hero of Nothing is sort of drawing the short straw, right? Space and Time and all sorts of cool stuff, and then… Nothing? I mean it almost sounds like a joke. A really… bad joke." She kicks at one more almost out of spite before shrugging.
"I guess we can still go… kill some imps or something. That could be fun, right? I've even got this new pen I can try. It'll be great." She offers, her enthusiasm hollow and fake. She sniffs a bit and rubs her eyes again. "Hah, it's… dusty in here. Got something in my eyes." She mutters, swallowing hard. "Yeah, this is a total bust. At least… /she/ got something." She gestures in the general direction of Arerth. "So it's not a total waste of time."
The spirograpgic building is a strange one, though familiar to Laer. It's part hangar, part arsenal, and all equipped for war. Dozens of shuttles line the walls of the massive structure, with space for more. Meanwhile, racks of guns can be seen. They're all prohibition-era; they strike one as exactly like what you would see in a mobster movie. They all have strange parts though. Bone stocks, stone muzzles, tentacled drums, or various combinations of these properties are all mixed about. One thing stands out to Cirno, probably, among all else. Either through scans or through intuition, Cirno will likely be able to tell that each weapon contains, in itself, a danmaku-based power source.
It is exactly the same type of danmaku as is standard in Cirno's world, with almost no variation.
The chest seems to be easily captchalogued. In fact, it seems fairly easy to pick this one up, even if you're not the one it's designated for. The chests are surprisingly light, for reasons consisting entirely of their lack of the indestructibility most chests have.
Cirno blinks a few times, checks her sensor readouts again, then… absconds with a tommy gun. Fufufu. "Okay. That's weird. I'll have to ask around about that. This place is DEFINITELY weird."
Tshallandria just grins at the shuttles and starts to chuckle, "Oh my… Grendel and the boys are going to absolutely love these… …I can't wait to see if they're just as crazy in one of these as they are in their car."
Stepping forward she stops and touches the sides of one of the assault shuttles, "Oh yes… This is going to be absolutely hillarious."
"Yeah, hilarious, Tshall," Cirno grumbles. "Makes me wonder what else they might have snagged…"
"There's no such thing as a 'Hero of Nothing.'" Vruasa answers, sitting down on the floor of the crypt and regarding the room with some puzzlement. He looks over towards Arerth, observing her as she decides to take the chest with her. That's actually a pretty good idea but this day is turning out to be pretty shitty for CS. Ugh. How the fuck is he supposed to handle this bullshit? There is one useful thing that he can take away from this, though… and it'll even let him manipulate things in the future just a little bit. Getting to his feet again, he goes around and captchalogues ALL OF THE CHESTS that have already been opened.
Then he points towards RS.
"RS, tell me if you feel somebody being injured abruptly over at PB's place. If you do I want you to send me there right away. I think PB's psychotic fucking sprite can help us out here if he feels like it. Oh, and I guess we'll probably need some healing after that." And by 'we', he means, 'him.' In the meantime though…
"'Til then, though… yeah, I guess we can go beat up imps. Come on." That having been said and no more options yet being available, he trudges back towards the stairs. They can probably find some enemies outside, and for some reason /these/ stairs aren't quite as hazardous as the others he's encountered.
Tshallandria looks to Cirno, "You don't understand… …All of the Minions were made to be upgradable. Why and how did you think that Grist was so easily charged with energy? How surprising is it that they've upgraded their weapons in the same way? How surprising is it that some of them have certain powers based on their early contacts with us?"
She gestures, "Why do you think the Ogre that I've taken from them is so… Easily empowered?" She frowns, "Yes. It does mean that their upper echelons will be … more capable, and probably in all of the ways that the minions are… …And the programming of their people rather then simple learning, that could be problematic too but…" She shrugs, "It is what it is."
Programming… programming. "Okay. That clears up a lot of things," Cirno says quietly. "I'm now wondering if there's a way we can turn this to our advantage somehow… but I'll need to look over all the data I've gathered, first."
Fiora goes over and kicks the LITERAL LAST CHEST SHE HAD NOT CHECKED, because it's the only one left. Her self loathing had actually taken over the empirical side of her that would have checked every chest twice just to make sure. That and her extreme doubt over what sort of hero she was. She winces as the text from the memo scrolls by on her SLEUTHY TELESPECS. Witch. Why a witch? Why not… An Empress? Why Void? Why not… why not… Self-esteem? The Witch of Confidence? She could use some of that too. Witch of Nothing, Witch of Void…
Whatever. Let's see what's in the dumpy chest. "I think it's… this one, then."
"Then we can go kill stuff or something." After she fails to open her chest too. Come on cosmos, you missed a spot to spit on me. =|
Tshallandria nods to Cirno, "Now, you understand. In … part I think." Her eyes glow for a moment as she examines the weapons and the shuttle for a few moments longer, "…What do you think of these Arthur? …I'm afraid I don't even have a way to gauge how powerful danmaku weapons are, to say nothing of high tech shuttles…" She looks to Cirno, "And you're right… …I suspect, we have access to their programming now. All. Here. On this Asteroid."
The game's internal mechanisms for generating weapon mods are a little weird when it comes to the more strange mechanisms. But the final product isn't too bad. The pen and ink specibi find themselves parsed through the weapon modification paradigms into, of all things, an old-looking ink blotter. It's not entirely clear how removing excess ink will be of any use. But one imagines that with special inks or with ink constructs one might find the ability to refine the shape or prevent smearing quickly might be useful, especially if properly alchemized.
Log Notes: Wherein an awkward date happens. I think my part of the scene wrapped up before the end of it, so we don't have the full log here. Unlike some of the others, I do not actually have a complete log of this (I think), so if you want it you'll have to find it elsewhere.