• This section is for roleplays only.
    ALL interest checks/recruiting threads must go in the Recruit Here section.

    Please remember to credit artists when using works not your own.
Azure Dragons Arc 3: Scene 3 [Ripples of Stardust]
Zhànzhēng Resort, East District
Omar, Arisa, Hiram, Kazue, Ottilie, Mirza
Zhànzhēng Resort | ???​

Still clearly jostled, Ervin silently accepted the mercy that had been offered and made his presence scarce.

Mingze Sieh on the other hand, seemed complacent in his own position. There was no telling expression to his face, and his posture remained silent. He exuded neither fear nor confidence, instead a calm that did well to ward off scrutiny. His clothes were obviously well made. Or more accurately said, they were obviously made to look expensive. Showy not in colors but in fabrication.

“Eastington House?” His words dripped with youthful cynicism, but his eyes did not land on Omar. “Right you are. I am Mingze Sieh, first son of Huizhong Sieh. In my father’s stead, I own this establishment, and its administration.”

A pause.

“I had not been made aware of this assembly”—unrest over displeasure. “What is it exactly that ‘Eastington House’ wants? I have had no short of reminders that my decision to house the protestors would lead to a significant plummet of support.” The wavering in his voice was strengthening. “I hope your ‘Eastington House’ doesn’t think we are in desperate need to renew our reputatio—”

A particularly disquieting scream sliced through Mingze’s rhetoric and with it, his conviction.

“What—What was that?”

It was a question directed at the men in the doorway, but an answer to something much more interesting. If there had been suspicions before, the vocal inquiry had solidified any doubt. Despite the loud commotion that was transpiring outside the room, Mingze had only now been exposed to it, and fresh dread began to boil within him.

“Who are you?”
Azure Dragons Arc 3: Scene 3 [Ripples of Stardust]
Zhànzhēng Resort, East District
Hiram, Kazue, Ottilie, Mirza, Omar
Zhànzhēng Resort | Boat​

There was a poignant delay in the woman’s eyes and words, but her diction did not falter.

“The man from earlier, ‘Sham.’” She asserted. “He’s not one of our own—not really. I’m not sure what grouping he’s from, but it’s highly unusual for members to mix like this. I don’t even know why it was allowed. It’s unprecedented.”

She took a cautious couple of steps into the enclosed space, making her way to the empty desk in the corner. Though not visible from the other side, a small satchel was pulled and then tossed over to Mirza. Its assembly and overall quality was nothing exceptional, but the numerous slips of parchment it contained spilled several inch’s worth.

“I sure as hell don’t have the confidence to say how this one’s ability works, but he had plenty of knickknacks stored in those papers there.” She almost sounded disappointed. “I’d be willing to bet your ticket off here is in that pile.”

“An inflatable boat or something. Hell if I know.”

She stepped past Mirza, and continued in a low murmur. “I don’t really know much about that Sham, but I’m not convinced the effects are permanent. Most things tend to loosen up after giving them a good beat down. I doubt that clown and his potential are any different.”

Zhànzhēng Resort | Outside​

The impersonator cackled.

“Are you so sure?” His feet remained planted, but the rest of his form wobbled along the restricted axis. “You don’t even know who I am! Let alone how this tricky little power of mine works. Can you be so sure this isn’t some sort of possession?” He ran a single nail down his own neck until it drew blood. “Or are you willing to axe an associate if it means undermining an adversary?”

He let out a satisfied sigh.

“Just think about it.” He beamed. “A peaceful gathering of anti-dragon sympathizers are horribly and violently disrupted! The horror! The tragedy!” He embraced himself with both arms. “Truly it doesn’t matter who stirs up the trouble—it’s not that kind of game.”

“When your little Sally’s and little Timmy’s look at the TV, what do you think will be running through their heads?” He leaned forward. “Father’s, mother’s, husbands, wives, sons, daughters—THE WHOLE BLOODY DISTRICT—they’ll know!” His movements stopped. “Who ELSE but the Azure Dragons would go out of their way to completely and utterly destroy this gathering? They know it! They expect it!”

“There’s only so much you can hide under the rug, before a bump begins to show.” He turned back to look at the resort. “And this is one hell of a bump.”

“You see, this isn’t about winning or losing.” Laughter was eating at his word’s comprehensibility. “It’s about perception. No matter what you do, rumors will spread. Cracks in your perfect little dominion will continue to form until those faults bring it all crashing down.” A sudden flash of solemnity. “This rule is unsustainable, and you fledglings will soon realize it.”

Mad speech aside, he was right about one thing—there would be no ‘victor’ here.

The fear-induced chaos within was reaching its peak, as evidenced by the cacophonic weeping and shattering of glass. Untold amounts of damage was being done to property and person alike contained just behind meager walls, and the prospect of remedying the situation was nothing short of an ideal. The vitrified dread was a product of preexisting unease—fear of the Azure Dragons.

There was nothing more to be done here, not anymore.
Phoenixes Arc 3, Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
Lucky Rabbit Casino - Floor 1, West District
Charlie Alice Dante Hector Yukito
The axe came rushing with a thirst for blood and Dante jumped backwards- wings flaring from the moment he landed to aid in his retreat, just as Hector moved forward to finish him.

Pain blossomed in a line diagonally, and for a brief moment as he dodged- his eyes met Hector’s. The line of pain went from his left pectoral straight across to his right abdominal- and a line of blood, told him how close Hector had come to finishing him in an instant.

If he were using Lancer- his defenses would have been higher. Against Lancer the way Hector was cutting through Jasper’s scales warmed butter on a knife would be entirely different against Lancer’s nigh-impenetrable armor even if he could feel the sting of every attack that hit him- Lancer’s core body would remain mostly pierced free.

But transforming would do him no good- he couldn’t afford to. He could see it clearly. Hector wanted to get this done- the ice gargoyle assisting him was sure to back him up. Even if he could transform into Lancer and follow up with an attack, there would be witnesses-- that could be leveraged against him, and he wouldn’t kill everyone in here to keep Lancer’s identity a secret.

The risk wasn’t worth it-- Jasper would have to stay even if Lancer was his better card.

Jasper’s scales were designed to be resistant against force, but they barely provided him the defenses he needed against blades as sharp as Hector’s. The cut flared angrily with pain, but Dante ignored it. The wings flapped as Hector’s attack came through and he lined up a potential other- but by then, Dante slid on his shoes backwards a distance too far as he released a claw of energy not from his arm but from his gut, where it sank like a hook into the feathery ground and as he shifted his feet and positioning, allowed him to curve around Hector at an arc.

His body glowed with dull, sickeningly green light- signaling to Hector that even if he was ready to put this to an end, his opponent clearly was not. As his sliding arc met its end, Dante shifted on the ground to perform a twisting handstand kick- a kick that magnified its reach even if he was out of range, with serrated pointed teeth forming as Dante’s leg swept with his hip-hop like spin, the energy extension following his leg as it moved in to strike Hector-- the needle like apparition dulling at the point of contact to avoid puncturing him literally- but the force behind the attack still strong enough to have an actual impact.

Hector was satisfied with the blood drawn from his attack, and fully intended on another swing of his axe to finally destroy this new thorn in his side, but it wasn't to be. And what was worse was that the thorn was still stinging.

Having to react suddenly to Dante's maneuver, he lifted his shield a moment too late to block the energy-enhanced kick, that sent him to the ground. It hurt like hell, Hector was sure it would bruise, but this was the same man that kept fighting with a knife through his eye. He'd get up and continue-

"Hull breach! We're falling apart!"

An unseen voice boomed. As Hector hit the ground, he fell through the plumage.




Down to the ground floor he went. His sponsee, the Rookie that had flown away to tail their target, heard this commotion and turned around, not about to abandon the Queen.

Dante bounced off his hands with the momentum and as he tipped back to his feet those glowing legs, pulsed, launching himself into the air only to see that Charlie and Alice were nowhere in sight, with a grimace, energy limbs sunk into the plumage around him, and with a flex of will, he shot himself outside like a slingshot as he bursted from above through a somewhat feathery wall before him.

Zachariah C. Locke
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
Luck Rabbit Casino, West District
Charlie, Hector, Hide, Raquel, Yukito, Zachariah,
Alicia, Dante
Whole World Blind

This was actually Zach’s second time in Wonderland. The first had been in Upper Central Mall, where he’d been looking to buy a gift for Jun when people in rabbit masks attacked. It had been amusing to watch another No-name gang attempt to mimic what the Scarlet Phoenixes had already done. There was a time that Zach would’ve been proud of being part of such an achievement…but that was neither here nor there.

He could understand the new Queen’s desire to recreate legacy, but at the cost of breaking one of their own? Granted, Helva was probably a bit soft with her sponsoree’s trial…and he made his own choice. The choice of betrayal was hardly an easy one.

Shaking his head, Zach waded confidently through the grains and into a distorted dirt wall, waving the others to follow. Knowing something wasn’t real, but still feeling the effects…to a degree…was something else. ‘Digging’ through the ‘dirt’ made walking easier so Zach played with the underground illusion manifested by tea spores, clawing his way through the ‘dirt walls’ until he found a tunnel that led to the door.

Along the way, he met plenty of insects. Some tried to lie to him. Others tried to help him.

Zach, of course, trusted his own eyes.

Dusting away the ‘dirt’ that covered it, Zach yanked open the exit that led to the casino stairs which–thankfully–were still normal. He bowed dramatically as he held open the gates. “After you guys~.”

Once everyone–Raquel, Hide, all the hostages–were herded out, Zach rushed down the spiraling steps with Rufus still over his shoulders. He touched the earpiece. “Hawk to Queen Pharaoh, we have to leave now! Gourmet, Spellbinder, and I, have secured some spiffy-looking VIPs from the Ruby Room.”

Hopefully, that was enough to offset the lack of Tiger ‘princess’. NPs that did business with Tigers, or at least in a Tiger establishment, propagated enemy wealth all the same, though Zach mainly took them to buffer the rage Hector would likely feel towards Helva’s sponsoree. “None of what you are seeing is real. It’s the product of an illusion, but a very powerful one. Don't breathe in too much of it. ”

The mind and the body were intricately connected such that if the victim inhaled too much of the tea leaf spores Alice produced, and believed themselves drowning, the body may very well produce similar effects. Naturally, NPs were more susceptible to it than HPs and knowing it was an illusion helped, but it also depended on the degree of inhaled spores. The longer they stayed, the longer the madness would overtake…especially around the source.

Then there was the earth that still shook.

Hand against the stair railings, Zach leapt over them, skipping steps and zipping from platform to platform until he landed on the ground floor with Rufus in tow. Then he ran. “Don’t fall behind, guys!”

The gun was replaced by a phone from his back pocket as he texted the driver of their escape vehicle. His cover might’ve been blown, but he still had his eyes, which gave him an overhead view of where his allies and enemies are. Avoiding any remnants of security wasn’t difficult…especially since they had more important things to worry about.

As he arrived at the entrance of the Lucky Rabbit Casino, a black, armored vehicle busted through the front door.

Yukito was helping Hector.

Raquel and Hide were with him.

That only left…

Hand to his earpiece, Zach spoke as he loaded an unconscious Rufus in the vehicle. “Hawk to Temperer, we’re leaving. Bring her to the escape vehicle if you can, but if you can’t, it’s understandable. Kitty has a nasty potential~”

Whether or not Charlie returned to the Phoenixes, whether he continued to lie or opened up about what he wanted to the Queen was up to him, but Zach didn’t want to have to hunt down a kid Helva personally picked. No Tiger was worth breaking that sort of bond over.

Roda the Red Roda the Red WhiskeyMarten WhiskeyMarten Caffeine_Obsessed Caffeine_Obsessed Misuteeku Misuteeku AriAriAbabwa AriAriAbabwa @The Regal Rper @weatheringwings
Last edited:
New Oasis Arc 3: Scene 2 [The Dragon and the Phoenix]
Central District
Helva, Isaiah, Kanna, Kaede, Meirin, Rin, Shen, Vulken, Yong-Yut
In the heart of the sprawling, multi-layered metropolis that was New Oasis, the city within a city, known to most as the Central District or simply Central, pulsed like a living organism. Central District was a marvel of human innovation, built atop discordant paths of modern ingenuity, each with its own vibrant heartbeat. Towering skyscrapers kissed the heavens in Upper Central, while the labyrinthine Lower Central thrived with a vivacity unique to its subterranean existence. The two cities layered on top of one another, were united by colossal columns that not only bore their weight but symbolized the unbreakable bond between them.

The architectural marvels of Central District had been meticulously crafted over decades, each structure an artistic blend of form and function. The Upper City's skyscrapers were constructed with advanced materials, melding steel and concrete into a harmonious union of strength and elegance. The vast expanse of glass that adorned their facades reflected the sunlight, casting brilliant hues of gold and silver onto the city below. Suspended gardens hung from the edges of the upper levels, creating a lush, verdant canopy that danced with the wind.

The Lower City, nestled beneath the shadow of its towering counterpart, boasted its own unique charm. Buildings, a mixture of retrofitted older structures and contemporary designs, coexisted in a fascinating marriage of past and present. The streets and alleys were a maze of culture, filled with the sounds, scents, and flavors of the city's diverse inhabitants. The intricate network of bridges and walkways connected the labyrinthine subterranean world, their spiderweb patterns a testament to the ingenuity of the architects who had envisioned them.

But nature, in its unrelenting, capricious ways, chose to challenge the very foundations of Central. The earth trembled. An earthquake had erupted from the depths below, tearing at the city's roots. Buildings groaned and swayed, streets cracked and splintered, and the once-stable ground trembled like a frightened animal. The city's inhabitants, caught in the grip of the tempestuous earth, cried out in terror.

The mighty columns that had held Upper Central aloft began to strain under the onslaught, groaning as they fought against the seismic forces that sought to bring them down. Panic coursed through the city's veins as the inhabitants of both layers realized that if enough of the columns shattered, Upper Central would collapse, crushing all of Lower Central beneath its unfathomable weight.

In the midst of the chaos, two figures moved like shadows through the din, their fierce rivalry momentarily forgotten. Shen, the enigmatic King of the Azure Dragons, and Lyric, the one-time Emperor and King of the Scarlet Phoenixes, raced through the city, united in their desire to save the lives of the people caught in the devastation. Within the throes of chaos they stood apart, their every move synchronized to perfection. Their powers, once used against one another, now joined in harmony to save the city they both loved, fiercely.

Shen tore through the wreckage with precision and grace, bending twisted steel and lifting debris as if it were a mere extension of his will. Lyric, meanwhile, crushed barriers and created new paths for the trapped citizens to escape. Together, they moved like a well-oiled machine, their rivalry set aside for the greater good as they raced through the city, leaping from one catastrophe to the next.

A collapsing building threatened to bury a group of terrified citizens; Shen moved with the grace of a dancer, weaving a metallic shield to deflect the falling rubble, while Lyric charged forward, her strength shattering the falling detritus into a shower of harmless fragments.

Elsewhere, a ruptured gas line sent flames roaring into the sky; Lyric, her muscles bulging with effort, bent the earth around the leak, suffocating the fire, as Shen manipulated nearby metal to form a makeshift barrier, protecting the onlookers from the inferno.

The air was heavy with the scent of smoke and fear, as the cityscape around was them warped into an unrecognizable landscape of destruction. Yet, still the two Kings, the Dragon and the Phoenix, carried on.

When at last the dynamic duo reached the first of the pillars—Shen having fashioned a metallic platform for Lyric to stand atop—the sheer, monumental scale of it gave both of them pause. Like a towering monolith, its surface smooth and unyielding, gleaming in the wavering sunlight like polished marble, dwarfed the figures of both of the Kings hovering beside it. At first, the movement was imperceptible, a subtle swaying that seemed almost like a trick of the eye. But as the tremors grew in intensity, the pillar's movement became more pronounced, its surface rippling like a pond disturbed by a thrown stone.

Shen watched in horror as the pillar began to wobble with increasing ferocity. Each shudder seemed to weaken it further, and the cracks that appeared along its surface only served to confirm his worst fears.

The task at hand was impossible surely, but neither made a move to retreat. They drew closer, and set to work.

Lyric's arms trembled as she gripped the first pillar, her veins pulsating with the strain of holding the city's fate in her hands. Without a moment's hesitation, Shen focused his power on the surrounding environment, reaching out with his mind to the metal objects scattered throughout the two levels. Abandoned cars, scrap metal, and lampposts all bent to his will as he summoned them to him, directing them with the finesse of a master craftsman, or a conductor. His movements were fluid and precise, his body swaying in unison with the metal he controlled as he fashioned the salvaged objects into suitable supports.

As the metal objects came hurtling towards him, Shen caught them with ease, manipulating them into the shapes and forms he needed to reinforce the pillar, spinning them into fine threads to create a lattice-work of steel to reinforce the concrete of the pillar. Slowly but surely, thanks to their combined efforts, the pillar stabilized. And for their work, Shen and Lyric were rewarded with a brief moment of hope. However, their respite was short-lived, as they looked out to see a forest of similar pillars threatening to fall, each one in dire need of their attention.

With nowhere left to go but forward, together they worked tirelessly, methodically, their hearts and bodies burning with the effort. With every passing moment, the tension increased, the weight on their shoulders growing heavier and heavier. In some places they were already too late. There, they had no choice but to move on to the next. From site to site, Lyric's strength proved invaluable, allowing her to hold up massive weights that the pillars could not withstand while Shen reinforced them. They worked in perfect unison, their process down to a science by the time the fourth pillar rolled around. This grueling task took them from one end of the city to the other, as they worked feverishly to shore up the city's lifeblood. Their bodies ached, and sweat poured down their faces, but they pressed on, determined to save Central District from annihilation.

Every time they reinforced a pillar, they could feel the ground tremble beneath their feet, as if the very earth was rebelling against their efforts. As they worked, they were surrounded by the sound of chaos, the screams of trapped citizens echoing through the streets. But amidst the symphony of destruction, there was no time to dally. What were the lives of the few when faced with the fates of the many? But even as they worked, they knew that their time was running out. They could feel the pillars groaning under the stress of the quake, their structural integrity weakening with every passing moment. The ground shook beneath them, and the air was filled with the sound of groaning metal and concrete, as if the very city itself was crying out in pain.

And then, disaster struck. One of the pillars collapsed while they were working to save it, and Lyric was forced to bear the full weight of the load it had been supporting. The pillar, once a symbol of unwavering strength, now buckled and groaned beneath the earthquake's relentless assault. Lyric's muscles burned as she threw herself against the failing column, her body trembling with the effort to hold back the crushing weight. The world around her blurred as her focus narrowed to the task at hand, the sounds of destruction fading into the background. With every muscle in her body straining, she pushed her body as far as it could go, her eyes fixed on the massive column and the city it supported above, whose weight was now sorely leveled at her. She could feel the weight bearing down on her, threatening to crush her under its thumb. She almost let it... Her knees buckled. Her arms shook. Out of her mouth came a silent scream.

Shen watched in amazement and terror as Lyric strained with every fiber of her being. Shen could see the veins bulging in Lyric's forehead as she gritted her teeth and held the pillar in place, preventing the furthering of a catastrophe. She was pushing herself beyond her limits, and he knew that she couldn't hold it for much longer.

Shen's heart sank as he realized that this was it. They had done all they could, but it wasn't enough. The city was going to fall, and there was nothing he could do to stop it. For a moment, he was overcome by despair.

But then, something shifted. The air around Lyric seemed to shimmer and ripple, as if an invisible force was pushing against the weight of the pillar with her. And then, slowly but surely, the pillar began to rise, lifted by an unseen force.

Shen watched in amazement as Lyric's eyes glowed with a bright white light, her entire body suffused with a strange kind of energy. She was channeling her powers like never before, and the result was nothing short of miraculous.

Awe-inspired, Shen, his eyes glowing once again with a fierce determination, stretched out his arms, commanding the very essence of metal to respond to his will. He wove a dense lattice of steel reinforcements around the pillar, desperate to shore up its failing strength. Sweat dripped from his brow, his jaw clenched, as he pushed his powers to their limits. The city around them groaned in agony, the ground shuddering far below their dangling feet. Dust and debris filled the air, stinging their eyes and clouding their vision. The once-gleaming skyline was now marred with cracks and fissures. The city's very foundation groaned and twisted with the force of the earthquake. All around them, everywhere, buildings toppled like dominos, the ground splitting open in gaping fissures. Panic and chaos reigned as citizens scrambled to escape the destruction, their screams and cries echoing through the streets.

With a final burst of effort, Lyric lifted the pillar clear back into place, and then it was over... But for a moment.

Without warning, and with a deafening crash, the tension that had knotted up inside of the pillar exploded, sending debris and concrete flying in all directions. And as the debris exploded around them, a cacophony of destruction filled the air, muffling the cries of frightened citizens. The cloud of dust that enveloped them seemed to swallow the world whole, leaving only the determined duo to combat the chaos. If only they still lived... For as the cloud of dust plumed out of the wreckage, for a brief moment, nothing moved within...

With a surge of power, Shen burst through the cloud of dust, propelling himself skyward like a harrier. He took one look back at the destruction, his mind racing with the possibility that she might be buried beneath the rubble. For a moment, he considered going back to try and rescue her.

But the sounds of chaos pulled him away, and he knew that other people needed saving. With a heavy heart, he flew off to attend to the other pillars, hoping against hope that Lyric had somehow managed to survive...

As the dust settled, the column that Lyric had been supporting remained standing. But she was nowhere to be seen.

Raquel Filo
Whole World Blind
Casino, West District
Raquel, Hector, Alicia, Dante, Hide, Charlie, Mizuya, Zacharius
Whole World Blind

"Get over here unless you want to be like your friend over there!" Raquel grabbed one of the hostages to help out. She didn't know exactly why Zach decided to take them all hostages and would have preferred being done with it and eating them up. Though since Zach was a gentleman, unlike Hide, she decided to let it slide for the moment. Right now, their escape was more important now that everything was fuck up.

"Darling, I think you should take your medicine more often," Raquel shot a remark at Hide as she made her way through the grains. The sheer touch of something that wasn't blood or human meat made her feel disgusted. "No offense, but this is an intervention. Why does everything become so complicated with you around?" A faint smug smile graced her lips as she accused Hide of being the reason why everything was happening.

Following the pink hair man, Raquel gave a quick, "Thank you, Hawky~" and escorted the hostages with Hide out. "Sheesh, maybe I should have stayed and helped out if this was going to happen." If only she had finished her side of the mission faster rather than sooner. Raquel preferred not to disobey her most beloved Sponsor, so it was out of her hands.

Finally, they managed to make it to the van. "Alright, now in you go!" Raquel said as she began throwing in the hostages after Zach did with Rufus. "If you're lucky, you might leave with only an arm or leg missing." A grotesque smile was shot at them before Raquel turned back around and looked over to Zach. "Hawkeye. Where's Pharaoh, my adorable little brother, and Temperer right now? I seem to be detecting a lack of presence of them." Raquel said offhandedly.

Though it was completely different from how she felt, Hector nor Yukito weren't here, and she was about to run and find them if they didn't appear in ten seconds.
Last edited:
Omar Ayad
Azure Dragons Arc 3: Scene 3 [Ripples of Stardust]
Zhànzhēng Resort, East District
Hiram, Kazue, Kairong, Omar, Ottilie
Azure Dragons Arc 3: Scene 3 [Ripples of Stardust]

Omar Ayad would look at Mingze Sieh, first son of Huizhong Sieh as he called himself even going so far to mention that he owns the resort and controls its administration. Mingze Sieh would attempt to as ask what the Eastington House wants as Omar Ayad realizes that he didn't do the whole speech about Eastington House during his initial introduction. However Omar Ayad waited for his moment as Mingze Sieh talks about what does the Eastington House want and also about the significant plummet of support which Omar Ayad would have liked to respond but the tone and voice of Mingze Sieh felt almost too appropriate for the situation but it was the mention for renewing the reputation of the Zhànzhēng Resort that almost made Omar Ayad break into laughter but he held himself back.

The scream would unfortunately seemed to have broken Mingze Sieh. The fear seems to be coming from behind Omar Ayad but Omar Ayad was not even doing anything but noticing the break in morale and with the most common question leaving the lips of Mingze Sieh seems to have earned Omar Ayad blunt response. " My name is Omar Ayad. A representative of the Eastington House; a conglomerate that houses the agriculture industry, arms industry, construction industry, fishing industry, healthcare industry, mass media industry, mining industry, and security industry. Honestly we wanted your group to join our conglomerate to help control the hotel industry but then this whole messy business of the protestors and activists made us see your group in a whole new light. "

Omar Ayad would walk a bit as if he were inspecting the two masked people that were controlling the portal as Omar Ayad even took the time to check the portal however Omar Ayad never even bothered stepping into the portal itself and was content with staying in the hallway. To the three people who are watching this stranger who seems to be inspecting them without a care in the world it feels weird and finally relief came to them as Omar Ayad steps a few steps back before continuing his speech as he suspects that none of the three three people understand the situation or the statement new light. " Two of the members thought it would be a good idea to cut you off from certain products that can help run your industry specifically the members of the agriculture industry and the fishing industry. Oddly enough we didn't need to do anything as your normal wholesale partners seemed to back off when they heard you are supporting Anti-Azure Dragon sympathizers in the East District also known as the Dragon District. You literally shot your own foot but you survived and better yet you unknowingly seemed to have gathered workers from the Eastington House who joined in this Anti-Azure Dragon protest. Those same workers who were activists and kept on preaching for change when they themselves have done nothing but hinder the companies development. Those same workers who were warned not to participate unless they wished to lose their jobs and they are conveniently placed in such a position that if anything were to happen to them then the Eastington House would only lose the complainers. Which would spare the rest of our workforce and help keep our insurance premium from collapsing. "

To some the idea must have hit them by now but just in case; it was almost subtle but Omar Ayad is saying that the Eastington House would be okay with a slaughter however Omar Ayad is the person right now and all the playing cards are stacked in his favor. " You have three choices right now Mingze Sieh. Option one; Don't protect the protestors. The Azure Dragons storm this resort and the massacre happens. The Zhànzhēng Resort is forever crippled and will be known through out time as a war hotel which allowed such a massacre thus staining whatever recognition it had in the past and condemning it for future generations to come. Option two; The Zhànzhēng Resort can choose to protect the protestors and the Azure Dragons still storm the Zhànzhēng resort. The massacre still happens however the Azure Dragons would now start by painting a target on this resort. They would start harassing the Zhànzhēng resort thus keeping business very low and people would naturally avoid this place like a plague. Damn if you do and damn if you don't. The Eastington House offers an option three to this situation which may provide beneficial to you. Let the Eastington House deal with the protestors and the Azure Dragons and you don't need to get your hands dirty. "

Omar Ayad would walk a bit to allow some time to think and consider the options but just a few steps away would Mingze Sieh quickly ask without hesitation. " Why? What is in it for the Eastington House? What can they possibly get from this? " Omar Ayad turned around but had his arms outwards as he spin back to look at the two masked people and Mingze Sieh as he calmly replied in his flat tone. " Your group joining the conglomerate is a big plus for the conglomerate. Your knowledge of how the hotel industry works is another big plus. However that will not remove the fact that the protestors were allowed to gather under your watch so any reasonable person can agree that the Eastington House may put some unfavorable clauses that you might be forced to accept." Mingze Sieh quickly shouts back in anger. " Nothing about this has been favorable!! My choices are either let it happen, don't let it happen or join the Eastington House! " However Mingze Sieh wouldn't be given much time to think his options thoroughly as more screaming can be heard and it seems to be getting closer and closer. Only for Mingze Sieh to realize that Omar Ayad has gotten so close to him. This would be the moment that Omar Ayad offered a chance. " I now give you an option that will allow everyone involved to save face. I know one of my employers has arrived at the resort and unlike the Azure Dragons or the Protestors, my employer is well known in the New Oasis Times and the Tabloids as a Sable Serpent hunter named Jack-o'-Lantern who is willing to go to any district to hunt Sable Serpents even to the point where they cannot even hide in their own homes and even their own District. I also know that my employer is a unique specimen of the Homo Potentialis with a unique set of skills and the fact that my employer was spotted here, the newspapers and Tabloids would have a field day with this one. Right now I can use the resources of the Eastington House to make this whole incident nothing more than a gas leak which made many people hallucinate and we can end this whole incident peacefully and for you to profit greatly from this whole ordeal. All you got to do is watch and if you like my work then sign on the dotted line." Mingze Sieh was taken a back by how close Omar Ayad had gotten but ever more so that Omar Ayad already has a pen and a contract ready and waiting for him to take once Mingze Sieh reached out and took the contract would Omar Ayad give a small nod. Omar Ayad would remove his top hat and slowly remove a thin black film foil that covered the top hat only to reveal multiple micro cameras facing in all directions as Omar Ayad tilted the top hat so that it can see his face as he said out loud to the hat. " Time for plan C. " Omar Ayad would place his top hat back on his head before removing the thin cell phone from his breast pocket and swiping right to reveal a large red button to which he would simply press it.

Meanwhile outside in the van where the extraction team is waiting, the driver would receive a text and he reads it to himself before shouting to those in the van with him. " The boss discussed it with the client and we are moving to plan C. Switch to non lethal option and change the sign." One of the masked people in the van would open the back door of the van before grabbing a large white sticker and heading to the front of the van. The masked person would slam the sticker on top of the hood as she frantically remove the white tape covering the sticker as it slowly reveals the words: "Resort Security" while a second masked person would be doing the same thing on the left side of the van and a third masked person would do the same with the right side of the van. While the driver and one of the other people would begin collecting the assault rifles, switching the safety lever all the way up to prevent misfires, removing their magazines, slowly pulling back the bolt receiver as the bullet would fall down before picking up the bullet, removing the bayonet and placing it back into the rifle case for each one. The first person would finish with their sticker and go back to the van to pull out the second box. She opens the second box to reveal night sticks as she passes them around, once everyone has one and finish what they were doing, they all went back into the van before driving to the resort where they are met with similar vans with the "Resort Security" on their sides. They parked nearby to the Protestors and each would come out to corral the Protestors to the side away from the entrance of the Zhànzhēng Resort and the supposed security guards are keeping watch over the Protestors as a fleet of Ambulances would arrive. The paramedics would begin coming closer to one of the security guards guarding the Protestors as the Protestors can hear the conversation. " There seems to be some sort of chemical leak in the sewers. The guests here got infected by it and are hallucinating." One of the paramedics would reply back to the security guard. Dispatch informed us that a Hazmat team will be coming to quarantine the area. We will take the guests to the nearest hospital . " Any word when they will be coming? We aren't trained for these kinds of things you know. " Dispatch told us soon but no definite time yet. Well let's get them to the ambulance. Give me a hand..

The security guards would be dividing the Protestors as they would be loaded individually into the ambulance and driven off to one of the multiple hospitals away from the Zhànzhēng Resort but under the control of the Eastington House conglomerate. If someone was paying they would notice the security guards and paramedics all had a pumpkin lapel pin. A large truck would arrive as soon as all the Protestors had been taken and escorting this large truck was a SWAT van. The large truck had the words "Hazardous Materials Emergency Response Division" on the side of it. The SWAT van would open up as SWAT officers in tactical gear started coming out and directing the security guards to assist with quarantining the Zhànzhēng Resort and the surrounding area. The large Truck would open up and out comes people dressed in Heavy bright Red encapsulating chemical entry suit with a full-face piece self-contained breathing apparatus and steel toe boots. This is the level A heavy duty rubber hazmat suits oddly enough one could say it looks more orange rather than red. The Hazmat team begins to check and look for the possible leak while preventing anyone else from entering the Zhànzhēng Resort.

Meanwhile Jack-o'-Lantern search for Omar Ayad had stopped as he also received confirmation but this time to prevent anyone from getting close to Omar Ayad during his meeting with Mingze Sieh. Jack-o'-Lantern would stop in between the hallways and parked his motorcycle in the middle of the hallway. Jack-o'-Lantern got off his motorcycle and brought out a Nejiri Kama or better known as the Weeding Sickle as Jack-o'-Lantern waited to intercept anyone regardless if they were Azure Dragons as these event were happening around the Zhànzhēng Resort so as to not allow anyone to see that Omar Ayad and Jack-o'-Lantern are two separate people. Omar Ayad would show his cellphone to Mingze Sieh where it showed the various security cameras outside the Zhànzhēng Resort of what has happened. " I already informed our friends in the mass media to run the story titled chemical leak another one of the mayors mistakes. Thus removing from the public eye any potential bad news about the Zhànzhēng Resort and preventing the Azure Dragons from causing an unneeded massacre. I hope this shows the resources the Eastington House has at its disposal." Mingze Sieh realized then and there that something bigger is being done and he would be a fool to try and get in the way of the Eastington House. Quietly Mingze Sieh sign his signature onto the contract before handing it back to Omar Ayad. Omar Ayad would calmly take the contract and opened his briefcase as he place the contract inside Omar Ayad would remove three brochures as he handed to the two masked people maintaining the portal and Mingze Sieh as the three read the Brochure only for them to realize that this is worse than anything they could have predicted for the brochure made sure to highlight these words "Anti-Homo Potentialis Weapons." As the three are shocked and looked back to Omar Ayad, at this moment Omar Ayad finally smiled to them as he spoke to them. " Yes, my employers have made the perfect tools. Care to join us when we announce it to the world? " The three present were shocked and speechless to this declaration.

.End scene.

Charlie, Alice & Dante
Phoenixes Arc 3, Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
Lucky Rabbit Casino, West District
Charlie Alice Dante Hector Yukito
Charlie opened his eyes, his mind briefly confused as he laid on the floor, looking to his left and then to his right, he understood that he was now on the sidewalk, just outside of the Casino, he was back to reality.

Or at least that was what he originally thought, until his gaze caught a glimpse of the emerald surface that now covered the entirety of the casino. As he questioned reality once again, he noticed that Alice was under his embrace.

She quivered in his hands, trying to keep her cries silent. Alice, whether she realized it or not, had huddled closer to Charlie. Eventually, she gathered the strength to utter one word: “Why…?”

Charlie tried to stay strong; he couldn't afford to break down again. “...The Phoenix Queen…He wanted to take revenge on the tigers…For what they did to him.”. He sat up, gently moving Alice to his side, however, he was still unable to look her in the eyes. “He…wanted to capture you…WANTS to capture you…I-I wanted to prove that I was loyal to them and help him out but…I didn’t know it was you, I swear I had no idea...” Betraying his intentions, tears inevitably started to build up in his eyes.

Alice didn’t know what to think. Dante was right; Charlie was with the Phoenixes. With the group that caused all of this destruction. She watched Nico—remembering it made her blanch—get pulverized into a bloody mess. And Charlie’s face… That was no friend of hers.

Then who was this Charlie in front of her? The one with tears building up to mirror herself. The one who brought her outside alone, now desperately explaining away with wrenching remorse.

The same one her heart fell for…

“Then…” Her dried throat betrayed her. “Then are you going to take me…?” Quiet as a mouse, she hugged her knees. She didn’t know what she expected for his answer. Truthfully… she didn’t know what she wanted it to be.

Charlie listened to the girl’s question. There was so much he wanted to do in this right moment; he wanted to explain that he had never taken a life before, that this wasn’t who he really was. He wanted to explain every little detail about what brought him to this point, he wanted to confess his true feelings for her, the ones he had to keep under a lock given their current situation. He even wanted to respond with a yes, to take her with him not to the Scarlet Phoenixes, but instead, to somewhere both of them could be safe from the clutches of the gangs. But he did not have the time to explain himself, and even less did he deserve to act on any of that, nor did she deserve to be forced by his hand.

“I…I already ruined everything, I regret every single thing I did today” Finally, he braved looking into her eyes once again, the faintest trace of clarity finally materializing on his gaze. “I won’t take you anywhere…I just want you to go…I just want you to be happy, at least as much as I can help it”

"Then we’re both in agreement" came the voice from above. Mist of green following his descent and expanding outwards like a shroud, a shadow in his energy as it dissipated revealing glowing yellow eyes first- Dante, bleeding, stared down at Charlie, his expression, rather relaxed for a guy who had just leaped out of a pelican building.

"I’ll take it from here, unless. He stopped, his gaze shifted from him to Alice. "That isn’t what you want." He said with an expression that mimicked a quirked brow. "Like I said before, I won’t force you to do anything you don’t want again. You stay with the Tigers, you know what you’ll need to do. You go with the Phoenixes." And though he didn’t let it show, Dante knew what that would entail, “expect to adjust to whatever will come.” He said cryptically. "Helping you from there will be hard. But I’ll see what I can do. Make your choice now Alice. We don’t have time."

And then his eyes shifted to Charlie. Glanced him over briefly, with a critical stare, then as he turned back to Alice he said to Charlie. "Hmm. Cute as she said you were." He didn’t bother to elaborate. "What is your answer?"

“I—I…” For just a moment before Dante intervened, a momentary bliss had relaxed into Alice’s head. She lightly tugged on Dante’s clothing. “Charlie isn’t like them…” Still clinging onto hope to the very end.

If he were, I’d probably be beating him over the head right now. He didn’t say it though. He allowed her the moment.

But… a choice? Why would… Alice looked towards the open streets. Beyond those streets were the other districts; outside of the West. Only this time, instead of a one-man crew relying on his sister and old friends, it was an entire gang. This horrifying attack was, in fact, a chance.

If only they thought to ask her without the bloodshed.

Alice looked at Charlie. “Thank you…” was all she could say to him.

Then to Dante, “I’m staying.” She looked up at the Lucky Rabbit Casino, only now taking in the gravity of her unintentional use of power. If she could do something like this, then... “But… Dante… I can’t keep running and hiding under protection… I don’t know if I can live like that anymore. I… I want to do something.” Alice didn’t want to look at either of them. “Will you help me change things?”

"Gladly" his hand patted her head and he grinned-- but that grin was short lived as he winced from the flaring pain with the gash across his torso.

That would take time to heal, unless of course he could find Ezra later.

Up to this point, Charlie had merely kept silent, watching the man exchange words with Alice, all the while keeping his guard up. The man was fighting Hector up until now, the rookie didn’t know if he could trust him. But from what it seemed, Alice did, and that mattered more.

“Will you really help her?”

"I guess you’ll have to trust her." Was Dante’s noncommittal shrug. "That’s all I can say to convince you." Because he knew realistically nothing else would.

“...What’s your name, if I may ask?”

Dante.” He lifted the arm that had been cut by one of Hector’s blades, and a fedora of energy materialized over his head as he tipped it before it popped into circular particles.

“I see, thank you, Dante, and sorry…for all that happened”
He stood up, giving Alice one more melancholic look before giving a few steps forward towards the mysterious tiger.

“I know I’m in no position to ask but…” He felt that uncomfortable sensation, that of his Hypercharge deactivating completely, something that usually only happened during his sleep.

“Despite this…I can’t betray the Phoenixes, I guess they’re still my family…” He looked up, staring at Dante in the eyes, spreading his arms wide. “So if you could…Can you make it look as if you took Alice away from me...By force? It’s fine if you wanna kill me instead, I know I’m taking a risk by asking this “

"Make it look forced huh?" He looked at Alice, then looked back at Charlie. "That I can do."

His arm glowed "Don’t worry, I won’t stab you like Hector tried with me."

Charlie turned his gaze back at Alice, giving her one last crestfallen smile.“I’m rooting for you.” He looked back at Dante, closing his eyes as he braced for impact.

Reeling his fist back Dante’s glowing arm sent a right hook that socked Charlie right across the jaw and then in the same instant he released the energy stored in his arm where it wrapped around the Phoenix, circling around him and going taut like magic rope catching prey that went all the way down to his knees.

Alice winced. But any protest that came to mind, she buried. This seemed like a necessity at this point.

"Do me a favor and try to wiggle out of any future jobs that bring you and your crew back here. Can only fake it so long." Turning to Alice he gestured with his head at Charlie.

"Last words?"

Despite the strong pain that echoed through Charlie’s face, with a swollen red cheek as evidence, he gave the tiger a confident, almost aggressive smile.

“Yeah, I better don’t find out you betrayed her in the end…Or I won’t just be taking the blows next time.”

Dante laughed. Genuinely pleased to hear it. "Fair is fair." His other arm glowed and a talon snatched the ensnared Phoenix, lifting him up into the air before bringing him back to the ground-- gently. Body glowing in emerald green light Dante’s extended talon limb stretched as he kneeled beside Charlie. The only thing visible aside from his shimmering display, the burning yellow eyes.

"She likes you and I don’t think you are as much of a psycho as your Queen or some of the others in there I’ve met. So let me make this clear. In that building, your gang got a lot of people hurt from what my friends below are telling me. Some sleaze bags sure, but not all of them. Next time I find out you were involved in something like this" he lifted Charlie up suddenly, a blur of motion and then-- gently brought him back down- displaying control.

The key here, disorientation.

"Nothing will change with psychos like him in charge and idiots backing that foolishness. I don’t normally break an oath lightly, but if he pulls this shit again, unlike you he won’t get a pass. Keep that in mind. This city is shit because psychos like that and freaks like my King don’t give a damn about anyone but their own agendas".

It was a short exchange, but it at least said something about Dante outside of the image he used around Tigers.

The limb dissipated and the Orcman’s grim demeanor, the cold yellow eyes devoid of the earlier calm or friendliness, faded as he smiled, returning to serenity.

"Good talk." He turned. "Alice" his demeanor once more gentle, "let’s go. I’m taking you to one of my places. You can hide out there for now."

She only nodded. Alice felt like crying, but her face felt a burning, stuffy red from the tears already shed. It was so surreal; Charlie, Dante—injured, she just realized—with her as the last string holding up her world snapped. They weren’t out of the woods yet; Dante’s words reminded her of that. Hastily, she mustered up the courage for two last words: “Bye, Charlie…”

His hand rested on her shoulder. "When you’re ready. If you feel like it and if you feel you’ve forgiven all of this. Perhaps you two can have a proper talk again."

Without another word he moved, wincing slightly at the agitation of his wound but nonetheless offering a hand to carry her so that they could make a hasty escape.

Charlie layed on the ground, his body might've been fine for the most part, but emotionally he couldn't have felt any more defeated. He almost wished that the man hadn't gone so easy on him, the Phoenix secretly wanted to be punished a lot worse, as to perhaps feel like things were more even, even if no matter of beatdown could ever achieve such a thing. He didn't look back on the retreating duo, instead, he simply gazed at the sky, hoping for this nightmarish day to finally be over.

Serpents Arc 3: Scene 1 [Thicker Than Water]
Dank Hallway, Mysterious Black Site, North District
August, Damian, Kinsley, Kisara, Kyo, Peyton, Raph, Sab, Shinko
Raph and his rescuers burst forth from the oppressive darkness of the underground labyrinth, their ragged breaths filling the stale, grimy air of the North District. Raph blinked against the weak sunlight that filtered through the perpetual haze, his heart momentarily swelling with a dizzying mixture of relief and elation. He stared, wide-eyed and open-mouthed, upwards forever. It was the first time in eight torturous months that he had felt the sun's warmth on his face from outside his prison cell—even if the smog-covered sky of the North District could hardly be considered a thing of beauty. Even still, it was home.

Home. The very notion of it conjured images of Caio in Raph's mind. Caio, his savior, his family. Caio had braved the darkness to rescue him, and what was Raph doing in return? Abandoning him to suffer the same fate? Never. He couldn't.

With a sudden, furious kick, Raph leapt off the undulating tentacles that had carried him and skidded to a halt outside the ominous entrance leading back into the black site. Dust billowed around him as he studied the foreboding black maw that yawned, threatening to snap him back up if he stepped too near. The cacophony of their unseen pursuers grew louder, echoing in his chest with each thud of his racing heart. He hesitated. Fear seized Raph, its icy grip tightening around his heart. Shame accompanied it, a heavy weight upon his shoulders. He was ashamed of his fear, of his weakness. Caio had risked everything for him; why couldn't he find the courage to do the same?

As Raph struggled to overcome his emotions, his window of opportunity slammed shut. A terrible rumbling erupted beneath their feet, and the tunnel, with its slipshod construction and gutted innards thanks to the ragtag team of rescuers, began to crumble. The passageway leading back to the black site, back to Caio, imploded in a plume of choking dust, collapsing ceiling, and debris right before Raph's disbelieving eyes.

What followed was a haze of confusion and despair. Raph vaguely recalled staring numbly at the obliterated entrance, the last lifeline to Caio severed, as some unseen force yanked him away from the catastrophe, his head hanging low to hide stinging tears as it all came crashing down. All the while, the earth continued to tremble beneath their feet.

Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
Lucky Rabbit Casino, West District
Alicia, Charles, Dante, Hector, Hide, Mizuya, Raquel, Zachariah
Hide wasn't sure what to make of everything he saw in this place. It definitely didn't feel like the real world, he was sure about that. Maybe one of those fucking runts they were fighting blasted them with some sort of ecstasy or some shit. He blindly followed the pink haired fucker, though he had to question sometimes whether that was actually Zach or just another illusion every-time he left Hide's vision.

He shot a glare towards Raquel. Was she seriously saying this was his fault?! "Last time I checked, you were the one that started this whole mess in the elevator!" He threw his hands up in a rage, an accusing finger pointed at her. Though if what he said got through to her at all, he highly doubted it.

As they made it to the van, Zach being an unhelpful asshole by leaving them up there mind you, He crossed his arms, watching from the sidelines as the hostages reluctantly stepped up into the vehicle. The other pink haired fucker had a point. Why in the hell were there two pink haired fuckers in the first place? Had one not been enough? He had seen no sight of their companions. Were they still in that casino? Shit. Maybe they were in trouble! But... like hell he was going back in there. Fuck no. Though...

He furrowed his brows, scanning the area. There was no sign of Charlie. Hide muttered under his breath, "For fuck's sake..." He had to be ok. He just had to be. Hide couldn't live with himself if his friend got hurt, or -fuck he didn't even want to think it- killed. His throat bobbed anxiously, eyes set from whence they came. "If one of those bastards hurt Charlie I will cut off their fucking heads and shove them into their stomach so their stomach acids can eat themselves..." He huffed.

Tigers Arc 3: Scene 3 [The Faceless Fox]
East District

Kimiko’s eye twitched as the shorter man stepped forward and spoke. Miniscule? Her grip tightened even more around the handle of her bat. The daily suffering, the slow disappearance of a once-mighty father figure, the ruthless tearing-apart of a tightly knit family… her friends tears were fucking miniscule to these two?

If you’ve got enough money ‘ta get me all that stuff…” She reached into the pocket of her jacket as Pablo inched closer, the palm of her hand holding onto a not-so-fresh baseball that she had stocked in it hours earlier for this exact moment. “...Then you wouldn’t be takin’ more money from Feng Ma. Unless this is how you get paid in the first place.

Oh, please..” Pablo threw his jaw skyward and a bout of laughter rose in the air. “I’m in this business less for the money, and more so for the fun..eh-” He stumbled over his speech for a moment. “Not that- taking money from others is exactly a pleasure, but it does.. unfortunately come with the job, Ms. Lady.” For a moment, his confident facade cracked as he hastily thought over how to find resolve. Then and there, two things were apparent, either the male was too stupid for his own good, or the actions he made held genuine motive…maybe it was both; it wasn’t certain.

She knew what he was doing. His distance from her likely wasn’t a gesture of kindness– it was insurance. The closer he was, the easier it would be for him to stop her if she tried to make a swing at him with the weapon she had in tow– his little peace offering was probably bullshit, too. And while Pablo was probably expecting a girl her age to let bygones be bygones and agree, Kimiko had already made her decision after she had fired off that first shot– whether they gave her the envelope or not.

A small pause was taken between his speech, reaching for anything that could possibly help in this moment in time. All with utter ignorance toward the toggle of gears and clicks that went on behind the female’s stare. Nonetheless, the young Pablo was persistent, “listen– yes, we’re kind of stuck looking like the “bad guys” but we’re only doing what we're told. And here I am treading a bit along the ice because I’d rather have more friends than enemies.” He offered a dopey smile that lacked a tooth amidst its front two, an expression brimmed with a whimsical ego. The male was grown- though not that grown. “Come oooon~" He sang. “Let me make this worth your while, Ms. Lady, there’s gotta be something I can get you that’ll settle this.” But of course, it was when Pablo believed he was making a dent in her defense that everything seemed to come crashing down on his head.

In the blink of an eye, Kimiko’s bat made contact. However– said contact was not with the very-assaultable face of the dark skinned man standing before her. Instead, it came in the form of a light tap against the asphalt below them.

BOOM! Immediately after the metal clang that came with the tap, a violent but non-lethal explosion burst out in an arc in Pablo’s direction, with the recoil from it knocking Kimiko back a few feet, re-enforcing the established distance she needed to let off ranged attacks.

Pablo wasn’t graced a moment to lower his gaze to the metallic tink that sounded from behind his foot. Though, only thing that answered his abrupt curiosity was a violent outburst that plucked his feet right from their perch, heaving his body backwards as if he were a rag doll yanked by the back of his collar. Pablo hadn’t the breath in him to even scream, caught much too of guard to rally an inhale as his flying body crossed two meters before his back connected with the hard concrete.

A groan was made audible as looked up to see Welsha beside him, Pit all the while pressing his nose against his cheek in his own inquiry of Pablo’s wellbeing. “Aye, tough chica..” Pablo coughed as he slowly got to his feet, frankly more offended than he was injured, but a few bruises would most definitely overstay thier visit, he was sure. “Uhh.. hermana-” Idly sidestepping behind Welsha as he spoke, “say we– head back to my car, heh..

It took a stong effort for Welsha to not roll her eyes, but having resisted the temptation, she instead maintained her smile throughout the ordeal. It didn’t take long before Everything went south, and Pablo got blasted back right in front of her, the only surprising thing she found about the whole situation was that the Dragon girl didn’t direct her explosive bat to Pablos head, probably killing him in the process. Though since Pablo was still alive, it meant she still had to play nice, so tilting her head, Welsha went on to add “Well that would be the smartest idea, i would suggest you going first, i could probably distract her, while you start up the car, oh and be sure to take your dog with you unless you want them to have a new owner.

Musing over what she said about the dog getting a new owner Welsha went into a sorta thinking position as she contemplated the question before deciding to ask the girl, “Uhm, Ms. Kimoki, was it? If you end up killing my friend here, would you be willing to take care of his dog?” Though it was a bit of a genuine question, she was also using the time to further charge her hand, which was still glowing green while it was in her pocket. Welsha was preparing to unleash a large blast of smoke the minute the girl got too close, her blood was growing hot as she went into the 2nd stage of her potential. Her innocent smile turned to one feigning nervousness as she looked towards Kimiko.

Kimiko, god damn it!” The girl growled, grunting a quiet ‘tsk!’ once she saw that the male half of this extortion team had survived her attack. A quiet hisss emitted from the bat as its magazine popped out, prompting her to reach into her other jacket pocket to pull out four more blanks. While she quickly reloaded her weapon, she opened her mouth to hiss a reply back towards Welsha.

Hell no! Mom won’t even let me have a goldfish!” She growled, pointing over at the dog once the smoke from her explosion finally started clearing. “Plus, I’d want a much cuter doggy than that one if I had to pick!

Annoyed, Kimiko began to stomp towards the two, getting closer and closer to Welsha with each step. She raised her fully-loaded bat to threaten the woman, eyes clouded with a deep anger. “Now gimme the damn envelope, before I get serious!

Welsha directed a amused look towards Kimiko as she began speaking, Welsha learning that the girl apparently still lived with their mother, was interesting news to say the least. Though the fact that if the girl managed to kill Pablo, his dog would likely become a stray. Though Welsha couldn’t help but somewhat agree with Kimiko, that a cuter dog would probably be a nicer fit for them. Still though she wouldn’t be able to take care of Pablos dog, cause she wasn’t sure how Zinji would react. Though she supposed, that her thoughts should probably be focused on the threat that was marching up towards them with a very displeased look.

Welsha was sure to innocently raised her uncharged hand, while taking a step back nervous expression on her as Kimiko made a demand for the envelope that was in Pablos possession. Welsha nervously looked towards Pablo, and said, “You should probably run to the car, and be sure to take your dog with you, well unless you want them to be a stray.” Welsha figured it was probably a bad idea to take pets on missions deep into other gangs territories, but Pablo just had to do that anyways. So she figured it shouldn’t be her responsibility if something happens to Pablos little pet, her main goal was to look after herself first, and her mission second.

As Welsha maintained nervous eye contact with Kimiko, Welsha couldn’t help but shrink down with each step back she took, until she eventually stopped. Quickly pulling out her hand from her pocket, that was now glowing brightly green, she let out a torrent of hot steam blasting towards Kimiko. In an attempt to force her back, and obscure their vision,Welsha quickly moved to the side, but entered the steaming hot smoke herself in order to obscure her position. Before charging both of her hands this time, allowing them to slowly glow greener and greener with each passing second. Her main goal was to buy time for Pablo to run to the car, and get it started so that she could jump in or on it, and they could escape out of the East. Though the idea of Pablo just abandoning her did cross her mind, so she knew that she should probably think up of a contingency plan for that just in case Pablo decided to abandon them.

The moment Welsha gave Pablo the all clear, there was no longer anything more to stop him from bringing every teardrop of adrenaline to his legs and feet. With a short demand yelled toward his pooch aside him, the two scampered off to the car as quick as they could. A revving hum to life and Pablo was sticking the shift into gear as he side-eyed the panting pitbull in the back-seat, “you think she’s got it..?” His cracked shades were raised to allow him a better view of the cloud of smog that shot forward what he could only assume to be her hand. “...I think she’s got it.” An ear-splitting screech rose from the lot as the car spun to skid in quick U-turn to prompt their escape. Though before he could shove the gear into drive, a not-so-tender nip met the fabrics of his wear.

AY AY AY!! Le loco chucho! This is mint condition-.!!” His sentence quickly hushed but a few sharp barks by the discontented pooch. “Huh!? What’s gotten into you Pit, we got the envelope, the chica’s handling vieja loca, everything’s covered.” Another bark was risen in dissatisfaction, nonetheless, Pablo continued to turn the car around to head eastbound. “No, Pit, that chick could’ve taken my head off...

But he sighed the moment he laid eyes on the pitbull’s last resort to get his way, as the car suddenly broke to a stop. “....” Slowly narrowing his gaze upon the leg-lift stance that was made with an all too knowing expression by his artful companion. Pablo rubbed his temples a moment, before stuffing the envelope in the safe behind the glove compartment, and finally.. “You owe me chucho.” Stepping on the gas in another u-turn, as the two began to head toward the brawl at the speed of light. And with a racer’s grace, he spun both axles on a tilt as the wheels began to plow into the asphalt, throwing tiny strips of rubber to the winds. To his avail, Pablo drifted in a tight ring around the fog, tossing dirt and smoke into the air, congesting the soot that much more. “Welsha, andale! I can’t do this forever!!” Pablo yelled through the window, with Pit behind him sitting infront of passenger door creaked just wide enough for a single person to jump through.

The scalding-hot burst of steam not only forced Kimiko to cover her exposed face with her arms to avoid any serious burns, it also seemed to serve as a concerning smoke bomb of sorts, as her vision was now completely clouded. “Damn it, you little–!” She hissed from behind the safety of her sleeves, reluctantly waiting until it was safe to move them without getting injured.

The only thing she was able to rely on at that moment was her hearing. And what she had been hearing wasn’t good. Soon, the smell of burnt rubber violently filled her nostrils, and she quickly halted her breathing, now stuck in a blinding, smoldering, wet hell with barely any air in her lungs to last long without passing out.

Frustration quickly kicked down the door to Kimiko’s mind, and her nostrils flared when she heard a thud that could only be the sound of somebody jumping into a car. “I’m NOT LETTIN’ YOU TWO GET AWAY!!” She snarled with the last bit of oxygen she had left, raising both arms to strike the ground with her bat. The explosion this time was massive enough to immediately clear all the dense smoke in a second, shattering the asphalt of the lot and causing dozens of cracks to violently travel throughout it.

At first, Kimiko’s main focus was making up for all of the breaths she had missed out on, and she took multiple deep breaths as she calmed down, preparing herself to end this silly scuffle and rip her friend’s money out of the claws of these two kneecappers. However, once she opened her eyes, the only thing she saw in front of her was an empty lot, a few skid-marks littered throughout the now cracked lot, and a few employees stepping outside to see where that ear-shattering noise had come from.

She had failed. They had gotten away, off to deliver Feng Ma’s hard-earned money to whoever the hell had contracted them. For just a moment, she felt a great sadness– but it was quickly overcome by the desire to get the hell out of there. The cops had probably been called by now, and she didn’t want Feng Ma finding out that his daughter’s friend was running around on vigilante missions.

And so– she ran as fast as she could, disappearing into the shadows of a nearby alleyway and escaping, just as Pablo, Welsha and Pit had escaped their fiery end at the hands of a teen with a quirky little bat.



What’ll I do, huh?” Akira repeated Kiwi’s question, musing to himself for a moment while looking outside one of the many windows in his office.

He turned to face his assistant. “I’ll throw them away, of course! What else would someone do with a broken toy?

An obnoxiously fake laugh resonated from Akira’s mouth, seemingly unbothered by what he had just declared as if it were something regular people normally said. However, he quickly paused once the ringtone of his cell phone went off. He pulled the phone out of his pocket and quickly answered with a smile after seeing the contact that was calling.


Hello, Welsha! Ah, that’s a relief! I was beginning to worry about you guys just a teensy tiny bit, haha! I see, I see. I’m elated to hear that you, Pablo and Pit made it out safely. Well, come and see me as soon as you can, and we’ll discuss your reward, okay? Bye, now!

With the tap of his screen, the phone call ended, and he turned back to face Kiwi with a reassuring wink.

It seemed he would be able to keep his toys for a while longer.


Peckinou Peckinou First Rose First Rose gxxberkit gxxberkit
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 2 [Tactical Mayhem]
CDPD HQ, Lower Central District
Inigo, Eric, Phoenixes
When the ground opened up beneath him, it was all that the white-haired officer could do to steady himself. Damn it. This was it, wasn’t it? He had wished to die in battle, with honor. Here he was, about to plunge into the darkness of the earth, perishing to nothing more than just a simple earthquake. Pathetic. He let the world take him. Gods, he was tired. He slumped back into the air, letting gravity take him. The energy that had been pumping through his blood, willing him to keep moving had faded away now, leaving everything feeling like lead. Damn it. Damn it all. His eyesight blurred, and the light began to fade.


Of course he heard Eric’s voice. Even at the moment of his death, it was Eric that bothered him. He wished it could have been someone else’s voice, like Guin’s. Or Tatsuo’s. A girl’s voice would be nice. He should have gotten a girlfriend.

His eyes fluttered a little, and he swore he could see Eric’s face. Man, these death visions were wild. Eric was extending his hand, palm open as he attempted to reach for Inigo, worry etched upon his face.

“Hey there, Eric. Didn’t think to see you here,” Inigo breathed, offering a tired smile. He strained his arm, reaching out to grasp Eric’s hand. He was surprised to find that this hallucination was quite solid.

Eric held onto Inigo’s hand tightly. Part of him wanted to berate him for his idiocy, to adamantly stand so closely to the conflict in his current state. “Yeah, I usually prefer taking the elevator.” But now was not the time for that, he needed to save that knucklehead friend of his.

The detective pulled on his partner, bringing him upwards closer to his own elevation. The band on his hair slipped off, forced free from the howling, rushing wind, as well as his previous endeavors, letting his hair whip around his head, rather annoyingly. Ignoring his loss of his headband, he thrust his other hand down, the light in his palm releasing a slow, ample cone of soft light. It wasn’t destructive, it wasn’t very bright and it wasn’t hot at all, instead, the projected light produced a small amount of propulsion upwards, slowly but surely slowing their descent.

"I'll remember that next time," Inigo breathed, letting himself be drawn towards his partner. Maybe it was the enveloping darkness, or maybe his eyes had shut on their own accord, but he could no longer see Eric's light. He wrapped his arms around his partner. "Thanks, Eric," he muttered quietly as the rest of what kept him trucking on for the past ten minutes finally faded away from him.

“Just take it easy now, buddy, you really did a number on yourself this time.”

After what felt like a full minute, the cops reached the Lower Central parking lot, landing at a gentle velocity; it almost felt like he had rather fallen from a single ladder step. Eric, with his now free hand, grabbed a hold of Inigo’s wrapped arm, letting the weight of the sergeant’s body lay on him. The cops were now in a pretty difficult situation, even if Eric wasn’t gravely injured, and even if, hypothetically speaking, Inigo happened to be in perfect shape. The Phoenixes vastly outnumbered the duo. Suddenly, the detective’s eyes met with the black-and-red haired Phoenix, without any need for words, they both exchanged a single nod, they might still be enemies, but their fight today was over. “We’re gonna have to retreat now, Ini.”

the white haired cop tried to nod, as he moved to balance his own weight on the ground, just barely keeping himself standing with Eric's help. "Take me away, my prince." Maybe he was just delusional in his exhaustion, maybe he was just trying to stave off the impending collapse with humor, maybe he was still in disbelief that he wasn't dead. It wasn't clear which.

The two officers shuffled off their own way, away from the Phoenixes. “Oh, so you were a damsel in distress all along? Sorry for not noticing, I’ll stick to the script then.” The detective led the pair back to safety one slow step at a time, further worry undeniably painted on his face. “So this is an earthquake, huh? I’ll admit, it’s pretty scary.”

was all that Inigo managed to utter. His thoughts were swimming in a void. He had some things to say, but they were all drowned out by the incessant noise that pounded away in his head. "Yeah…" he echoed again. "You think…the big cheese'd give me a suspension for this?" He managed to form a sentence with some difficulty after a second or two.

“Just give him the puppy-eyed look, works for me everytime” Eric gave Inigo’s arm a little pull, accommodating him properly on his shoulders. “For now, let’s just worry about tending to those flesh wounds of yours”.

Much uncertainty surrounded the two officers’ current predicament, they couldn’t even be sure that their ally was one they could trust. But for now, the pair could only get their bearings and move forward. Maybe a trip to the hospital as well.
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
Street outside Lucky Rabbit Casino, West District
Alice, Charlie, Dante, Hector, Nico, Yukito
Elsewhere: Hide, Raquel, Zachariah

“Pharaoh? Are you okay?”

Feathers still fluttered around the pit, not just from the feathered beast that had hijacked the first floor. It seemed there was a new thing going on down here, but nothing that anyone could’ve made heads or tails of. It was nonsensical, but that’s what made sense in this moment.

But none of this makes sense.

In Hector’s eyes, the illusion was cracking. The scent of smoke and the sounds of screaming pierced his senses. Lifeless bodies under rubble — the casino’s rubble. He let out a series of hacking coughs as he oriented himself back on his feet.

“Of course I’m alright.”

He was coated in dust from head to toe, but it was nothing, really. His side still felt sore from the blow, but nothing he couldn’t walk off, and walk he did, up to the shattered windows that were starting to reform between clouds.

“Are you?”

Yukito nodded, swooping down beside Hector. ”They jumped off.” He didn’t have to specify who.

”We need to get out of here.” Hector ran his hand over the window frame. Real as real could be. Without looking, Hector swung his body through the frame, to the ground below, with Yukito flying after him. Given that they were on the ground floor, it wasn’t a crazy drop, and Hector landed on his feet on the pavement, breaking into a run. Looking behind him, he could see now the mossy structure they had been fighting in, and Hector realised it may not have just been a couple floors that the illusion had spread to.

”Call the others, get ‘em outta here if you need to.”

Hector came to a halt next to the road, seeing now what chaos had spread. Though the damage was nothing like Central, the street was in clear disarray. He didn’t care about that though, he cared about finding Alice and Charlie, and maybe killing that orc bastard on the way.

Yukito pressed a hand to his earpiece, allowing him to send a message to everyone.

”Hello? Pharaoh and I are outside. Status report?”

Hector pressed on ahead, till he could see a blue-haired boy lying in the distance, and he ran even faster in his direction.

Dragons Arc 3: Scene 3 [Ripples of Stardust]
Zhànzhēng Bay, East District
Nearby: Mirza, ???
In Scene: Arisa, Hifumi, Hiram, Kazue, Omar, Ottilie
Mirza looked down at the satchel that had been tossed his way, after hoisting the figure over his shoulder, ruffling a hand through the papers. He was weighing his options right now. He craved revenge, and who could blame him? But was it the wise thing to do right now? No, not in his eyes. Mirza was patient, and he was controlled, and he was selfless. He valued that about himself. He looked to his side. If reverting such a state was time-sensitive, he feared he was already too late. If it weren’t, then he’d be able to form a more careful plan. In any case, he had figured out what he should do, after reading a slip in the satchel.

”Consider the sort of people you wish to be associated with.” His voice had calmed down from the brief display of panic he had shown before, speaking again as though nothing was wrong. “And again, if you wish to really help the East, you will come find us. We can talk things out. We are not unreasonable.” Mirza couldn’t be sure of whether things would really be as negotiable as he described, he didn’t know this person after all and for all he knew she was as bad as 'Sham', but he spoke confidently. With that, he walked back out to the deck, fishing out a slip he had noticed on his look through the satchel.

Without saying another word, he reached over the side as far as he could manage. It was a bit of a gamble, but he had no other option to get to shore. He could swim, but not strong enough to trust himself carrying another human all the way. Between his fingers, he tore the paper labelled ‘Boat’, and before his eyes, a motorboat fell from the deck, colliding slightly with the railing but not seeming to do more than a scratch. Thankfully, it was the perfect size.

He took one look back at the masked woman but continued to remain silent. Holding the body in place over his shoulder, he leapt over the side to land in the motorboat that had crashed into the water. Mirza wasn’t familiar with the boat’s workings, but it didn’t take him long to figure out how to go forward and steer himself towards the shore. He didn’t need to go too far.

His mind raced as the boat came to a stop on the sand, unsure just what would be waiting for him at the resort. He exited the vessel, abandoning it on the beach, and hurried up without delay.

17 (1).jpg d408228fb08b53fb6bb94487068b54cd.png FiluvcyWYAEr0fR.jpg
Tatie "BANDY" Prince & Jericho "HELLFIRE" Madden ft. (NPC) Delson "BOOGIEMAN" Landa
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 2 [Tactical Mayhem]
Escaping Lower Central...
Boltius, Tatsuya, Ashley, Inigo, Jericho, Bandy, Callista, Eric, Gideon
Strapped in the sudden, warm embrace of bulging muscles and the thump, thump, thumping of Jericho’s frantic heart threatening to pound free from the confines of his body, Bandy’s expression went deadpan. Not the tits I expected to bury my face in tonights. …but they were the tits that had his back.

He let himself play the damsel in distress, feeling his consciousness fade in and out, a black vignette growing and shrinking at the edges of his vision.

Their descent from Upper Central to Lower Central picked up speed, massive chunks of earth and debris racing ahead of them, Bandy leaving flecks and streams of blood in the wake of his plummet.

Leading them, several colossal slabs of concrete collided with an immense, metal support beam belonging to the skeletal support structure that existed, until now, to keep Upper Central stable, and they shattered into pieces, spraying the Phoenixes in fragments and shards of stone.

Jericho did what he could to shield Bandy from the debris, but considering their current situation of falling to what could be their deaths, it made doing that a bit more difficult.

Then there was the matter of surviving the fall. Rico's mind was racing almost as fast as his heart, trying to think of something he could do, but coming up empty. His potential wouldn't be any help here and with the ground rapidly approaching, he could only close his eyes, tighten his grip on Bandy, and hope for some kind of miracle.

It came in the form of a blond-and-brown-haired goofball, who wrapped his arms around Jericho without warning—and, by extension, Bandy—and nestled his face between Jericho’s shoulder blades. “Aww, group hugs? In these trying times, it makes perfect sense.”

Jericho's entire body tensed when he felt a new pair of arms around him, a plethora of questions popping into his head, but all he could manage was a startled: "What the fuck?!"

“Woah-hoah~ Calm down there, Mr. President. I’m just here to do us all a favor.” Delson’s embrace didn’t let up. “Unless you’d rather go splat?” a chuckle rode his words on that one.

Bandy was fading out.

“Your buddy don’t look so good~ He still alive? Just askin’ ‘cause I can’t teleport the dead… I’m Boogieman, by the way, but you can just call me Boogie~” Delson had to raise his voice to be heard over the static of wind in Jericho’s ears. “I’m a Vet. in case you’re wonderin’~ Pleasure to meet ya. We’ll remember this introduction for the rest of our lives!”

The earth below grew closer by the second.

"Of course, he's still fucking alive," Jericho's words came out much harsher than he meant for them to, "Introductions later. Please just... just help us." He pleaded, unable to keep the desperation from his voice, his hold on Bandy only tightening the closer they got to the ground.

Delson appeared in front of Jericho then, hands behind his head, legs crossed. “Then that’ll do~” he beamed bright, grinning from ear to ear, “Nyehehe~” A moment of pause settled between them, and he directed his eyes downward to gaze upon the city, letting his thoughts shape the features of his face into solemn commiseration.

He wouldn’t be able to save them all. Two was the limit, and there was distance to account for, as well.

Snapping back to his peppy demeanor, Delson clapped his hands in front of him. “Alright! Only one way this works, got it?! On the count of three-” The ground below seemed to reach for them faster now, ever closer. “You’ve gotta scream Boogieman, alright!” That was a lie.

Delson threw his hand out and took a handful of Bandy’s shirt, pulling them close, sandwiching Bandy between himself and Jericho. “I repeat! On three: scream Boogieman!!”

Fifty feet left.


Forty feet left.


Thirty feet left.



It was more of a question than a scream, honestly, because Jericho barely retained anything this man said in the past couple of seconds. He didn't understand what the Boogieman had to do with any of this and he didn't have it in him to care. Every ounce of energy and focus Jericho had, went into making sure Bandy stayed secure in his arms.

Delson rolled his eyes, “Good enough,” and the three vanished.

The debris that had been chasing behind them shattered against Lower Central, then the three of Delson, Jericho, and Bandy reappeared twenty feet from the drop zone, all locked in each other’s tight embrace.

Shortly after, there was an explosion.

Delson removed himself from the hug and slapped Jericho on the arm. “It’s probably best you get ol’ gushers out of here,” then he was gone without awaiting Jericho’s response.

Jericho, not expecting the ground under his feet or Bandy's dead weight in his arms, stumbled and would have fallen on his ass had it not been for Delson. Once that support was gone, however, he had to fight to stay on his feet.

It took a minute, the explosion and Delson's words falling on deaf ears, but eventually, Jericho was able to get moving. He hoisted Bandy into his arms, with an arm under his knees and the other around his back, and left.

As much as Jericho hated the idea of just leaving in the midst of this chaos, there was little he could do for anyone else. His priority right now was getting Bandy somewhere safe and dealing with his injury. Jericho would feel guilty about being completely useless later.

Zachariah C. Locke
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
Luck Rabbit Casino, West District
Charlie, Hector, Hide, Raquel, Yukito, Zachariah,
Alicia, Dante
Whole World Blind

In response to Raquel–no, even before the cannibal had spoken– Zach broadened his gaze, scanning the vicinity of the casino and beyond until his kaleidoscopic eyes found his targets. “They’re fine.”

Once all the hostages were loaded, Zach jumped into the vehicle, motioning for the others to do the same. He tapped the driver’s shoulder. “Scooch over, buddy! I’ll drive. S’alot faster than givin’ directions.”

The pink haired Phoenix settled into the driver’s seat, hands taking the wheels. “Buckle up, Birdies!”

That was the only warning given before the vehicle reversed, then shot out of the casino the exact same way it had come–through the front doors. Briefly airborne, tires screeched as they hit the streets, Zach rapidly turning the wheels so the armored van drifted around. Speed limits only existed for those who couldn’t drive.

Neither the disarray of the streets, nor the lack of operating traffic lights bothered Zach as he “skillfully” weaved the car to their destination amidst the loud honks. He could hear Yukito’s over the shared comms, but left that for someone else to answer since he had his hands full driving. Besides, he’d already given his report, though Hector might’ve been too distracted fighting to hear it.

Zach didn’t hit the breaks until Charlie and Hector came into sight which, to be honest, wasn’t very far.

Short-lived thrill ride.

Stopping the van next to the sidewalk, Zach pressed the car horn to get their attention, sticking his head out the window. “We done here?”

The phoenix paused.

Head turning the direction of Central, as if gazing at things only his eyes could see, tears fell from the shimmering orbs behind a pair of sunglasses. It seemed he wouldn’t understand her to the very end. Her ambition. Her vision of the world. It was far greater than his. Zach’s protectiveness was reserved for only a select few. He didn’t care how many lives he had to take so long as his ‘family’ prospered…and he certainly wouldn’t be sacrificing himself (leaving behind his family) to support some buildings…or the lives of people he didn’t know. He and Lyric were different in so many ways…and yet, he couldn’t deny the respect he felt for the former Emperor as he watched her final hurrah. Death was something he was used to, and brushing against death but the daily life of someone who took lives for a living. Zach’s only regret was that they didn’t get to make up, to share one final cup, before the end. That his last words to Lyric were ones born of fiery, heated anger.

Zach didn’t explain his thoughts or his tears. Didn’t brush them away either.

He simply turned back to the others, a wide smile on his face. “Our next destination should be South…unless Queenie has somewhere else he wants to be.”

Or was it King now?

The future was one of the things beyond his sight.

Roda the Red Roda the Red WhiskeyMarten WhiskeyMarten Caffeine_Obsessed Caffeine_Obsessed Misuteeku Misuteeku AriAriAbabwa AriAriAbabwa @The Regal Rper @weatheringwings
Last edited:
Crumbling Lower City, Central District
Milo wove through the labyrinthine ruins of Central, his heart pounding in his chest, each step a desperate prayer, each breath a whispered plea. The sudden earthquake had unleashed destruction on the district, turning the once vibrant city into a modern-day cataclysm. Where the Hell had this come from? Milo knew that New Oasis did not lay on any known fault-lines, and so the fact that an earthquake of this magnitude could even be possible— he didn't have time to speculate right now. Crumbling edifices spewed dust like volcanic ash, shrouding the streets in a choking haze, while Milo's lungs burned with each breath, the acrid air stinging his nostrils and throat.

Skidding to a halt, his path forward barred, Milo pivoted on the spot and sprinted down a nearby, narrow back alley, his chest heaving as he drew in lungfuls of air. The buildings on either side of him groaned and shuddered as he ran, like ancient, slumbering giants roused to anger. Their foundations, weakened by the relentless tremors, threatened to give way at any moment.

The air was thick with the choking dust of pulverized masonry, the stinging grit irritating Milo's eyes as he pushed forward. The sound of cracking stone and splintering wood filled his ears, a cacophony of destruction that seemed to chase him down the alley.

Chunks of debris rained down from above, forcing him to weave and dodge to avoid being struck. The ground beneath him shifted and buckled, its once solid surface now an unpredictable minefield.

With every step, Milo's heart pounded in his chest, adrenaline surging through his veins as he fought to stay ahead of the chaos. He could feel the tremors in his very bones, the earth's violent convulsions resonating through his body with every impact like a heartbeat thrumming within his breast. A cancerous, foreign, unwanted heartbeat.

Collapsed walls and heaps of rubble littered his path, their jagged edges gleaming like the teeth of some monstrous beast. Milo took a running start and vaulted over them, his muscles straining with the effort. His leg caught on a jagged piece of metal, protruding from the heap of what had once been pieces of a worker's scaffold, now twisted and warped beyond recognition. The razor-sharp edge tore through his jeans and sliced into his flesh, leaving a trail of crimson in its wake.

Milo winced, the pain surging through his leg like a bolt of lightning. He landed awkwardly on his injured limb, gritting his teeth to stifle a cry. The alley seemed endless. But he refused to falter, the thought of Boltius driving him onward.

As Milo limped through the bedlam, a desperate cry pierced the din. His head whipped around, searching desperately for the source of the sound. He found it.

A family lay trapped beneath the wreckage of what had once been their home; their eyes, wide with terror, peered out at him through slats of splintering wood and cracked drywall. He stopped, instantly. Despite the pain in his leg, ignoring the sensation of warm blood trickling down his thigh, Milo hurried across the road and pulled out his now-tattered sketchbook and pen, both miraculously still in his possession after all of that.

With the precision of an artist, Milo sketched a rough approximation of a sturdy lever, imaging its material, length, durability, and construction, his eyes flitting from the page to the sight of the load it'd need to bear. He put on the finishing touches and tugged it from the page, the metal cool and heavy in his grasp. With it, Milo heaved the fallen debris aside and freed the grateful, terrified family. Milo bid them a hurried adieu before he returned to his pilgrimage.

And yet fate, it seemed, was keen on repaying his kindness with suffering. The moment he offered his farewells, the earth yawned open beneath him, swallowing him whole. From one moment to the next, Milo was falling. Air whistled by his ear as the sight of Upper Central diminished before his eyes. Panic clawing at his chest, he furiously snatched up his sketchbook and pen, scratching a few desperate lines that roughly approximated his best understanding of a working parachute, willing it into existence. He held his breath.

The canvas snapped open, wrenching him from his free fall, and he descended to the shattered heart of Lower Central, landing in a pile of limbs and deflating nylon. With a grunt, Milo extricated himself from the crumpled mass of parachute canvas, leaving the tangle behind as he forged onward into the ravaged Lower Central.

Lower Central lay in ruins, a twisted reflection of its former glory. Undaunted, Milo pressed on, his senses besieged by the acrid smoke and wails of the forsaken. Every step he took, every breath he drew, was in pursuit of Boltius, his guilt a constant specter at his side.

After walking for what felt like hours, Milo stumbled upon a mound of wreckage barring his path. Seeing no easy way around, and feeling like he'd come too far to turn back and find another way,, Milo began to dig.

Milo heaved and grunted, tossing aside chunks of concrete, twisted metal, and other debris, as he relentlessly dug through the blockage in a fervent attempt to carve a path forward. Though try as he might, his progress was slow, if it existed at all. Even still, he worked. He was a man possessed, his focus so singular that he could not see the futility in his actions. As his hands continued to sift through the rubble, they eventually brushed against something unmistakably human.

Only then did he return to his senses, a surge of adrenaline coursing through him as he hastened to free the person, his hands trembling with urgency.

Then, he saw their face, revealed by a slide of gravel and silt, the shock of bright, short-cropped yellow-blonde hair peaking out from the dirt and the dust. Milo's hopeful spirit curdled and turned rancid, the sight a venomous thorn in his soul. Milo stared down at the body, at the gentle rise and fall of the chest, revulsion carved into every line of his face.

He stopped digging.





CS Link
Tigers Arc 3: Scene 2 [The Heist]
West District
Ryutaro, Samira, Camila, Sylvie, Jennifer, Maria

“Forget it.” Ryu’s voice boomed out, causing Smile to freeze in shock. He slowly turned his head to where the grenade had exploded right at the Tiger Queen’s location, only to see the smoke and fire to blow again with a powerful shockwave to reveal Ryu standing there. His suit had been charred and burnt to a crisp, but was fine nonetheless. He *radiated* an aura around him as his eyes from under a darkened face shone a brilliant and deep purple in contrast to his usual steely blue.

“It took a moment, but now I get how your ability works. It’s the two of you.” Ryu then spoke, “It’s why you stick close to one another, why you told your brother to stay close. The distance makes your ability useless.”

Smile, wordlessly, stared at Ryu as he couldn’t comprehend how anyone could have survived such an attack. But he shouted in rage as he pulled up his knife again and prepared to stab it down into Samira’s neck. In what seemed almost like an instant, however, Ryu was now right next to Smile and hit Smile with a palm strike that sent him tumbling back several meters from the sheer force and freed Samira from the Twin’s grasp. To those that had watched Ryu’s return, it seemed as though he had practically reappeared out of thin air next to the Twin.

Were it not for the faded afterimage of his movement halfway in the distance he had crossed that quickly, it would have appeared to be the case. But rather, he was just *that* fast. “Are you alright?” Ryu asked Samira as he kept his gaze levelled on Smile, the Twin struggling to get up from his wounds as well as the recent blow.

"Oh, you know — better than that time where I got food poisoning at that New Year's Eve party you invited me to," Samira huffed in relief to hear Ryutaro's voice. She heaved herself up, grunting in pain as her weight shifted to her wounded leg. "I will definitely need some wine after this."

“I’ll treat you after this.” Ryu replied as he kept his attention on Smile.

Camila watched in surprise as a seemingly unharmed Ryutaro emerged from the curtain of smoke. ot only that, he also displayed physical abilities far above what they had previously seen from the Queen. The veteran felt a surge of confidence as their leader’s presence managed to turn the tide of battle. Knowing what the panel she possessed was able to do, she charged towards Vile, her cumbersome “shield” raised high.

Maria, seeing an exhausted Camila, raising the panel she gave her high, knew exactly what to do. This was her moment. Camila had gone to her limit and given her all, and had almost literally become a symbol of strength. She takes a mental screenshot of her holding the panel up like that before shoving her hand in her shadow, this time the hand coming out of the ground near Camila, grabbing her tail and jumping off the top of the car she was on, diving into her shadow, feeling how she ejects from the panel Camila holds.

She holds the tail with her right hand and her katana on the left, plunging her right hand forward with the impulse she got from diving off the car. From there, she was ready to help, if not fight in the place of the veteran tiger. This was her first true moment on the front line since the heist started, and she was ready to fight.

Vile was taken off guard by the sudden new body that had lunged at him, and was only able to deflect away Maria’s katana using his dagger which left him entirely open otherwise. Maria stabbed the severed head of Camila’s tail into Vile’s shoulder, right in between his collarbone. He howled in pain as what little remained of the venom entered him, taking hold as he felt his body grow stiffer and his belly tumble like a dryer.

He grabbed onto Maria’s arm as they both struggled in place with surprising strength, given how much of a beating he had taken already. The adrenaline of the fight, the rage and hatred he felt for his quarry, these were the things that fueled him now as Maria could see drool come out from under Vile’s mask that coincided with an animalistic snarl unbefitting of a person.

Back up on the roof, Jennifer pulled on the bolt with all her might to finally free the gun from its jam and quickly set it back up again for Sylvie to use. The situation by now had changed drastically from what they could see from their vantage points. Ryu was now facing off against Smile, who had been knocked back a considerable distance and was completely exposed out in the open.

It would be like shooting fish in a barrel, but what Jennifer noticed was that Vile had other intentions. “KILL THE FUCKING BASTARD, VILE!!!” Smile roared, bringing his brother’s attention to a new target. Vile turned his head to where Ryu stood, back faced towards him so arrogantly, and shouted himself as he headbutted Maria and shoved her aside. His legs felt weaker, more uncoordinated, but he was able to rush towards the Tiger Queen from the back with his blade in hand.

And yet, Ryu did not care. He put his trust in the rookie up above who had, thus far, proven himself to be competent. The Tiger Queen brought up his hand and waved two fingers together as a signal for Sylvie. Jennifer gritted her teeth as she helped Sylvie aim, straight at Vile while taking into account his movement and gait, and gave a nod. “Shoot!”

The pause in the shooting had given Sylvie time to think, not that he could form much with coherency while his mind raced in time with the fast-paced action. Watching the fight below, everyone playing their part, the Queen’s glorious re-emergence, made Sylvie feel oddly proud. Who’d have thought a guy like him would help pull this off? The adrenaline rush shoved aside the guilt that tormented him earlier, and when the gun was ready, he swiftly followed Jennifer’s instructions.

With steady hands that made his living as a tailor, Sylvie pulled the trigger without giving himself time to hesitate.

The timing couldn’t have been more perfect, but that was to be expected with Jennifer’s help. As Vile’s head bobbed to one side with his uncoordinated steps, a bullet met him straight through the skull. Sylvie didn’t need to take another shot to finish the Twin off, he was done for. Vile’s momentum carried him forward a couple more steps, but they were empty and uncontrolled as he fell to the ground. The gaping hole running through his head spilt blood and brain matter across the concrete like a watermelon had been crushed. It was a good job that Sylvie didn’t need another shot to finish him off, as his newfound strength wavered at the sight, prompting him to step away from the gun, turn back, and promptly vomit.

“Bullseye.” Jennifer said with a grin, looking on at the work Sylvie had done with a sense of pride.

It didn’t even register for the first few moments for Smile as he watched his brother tumble to the ground, lifeless and limp as his blood spilled out onto the pavement below. “G-get up… you’re fine… you’re fine…” he whispered to himself, “You’ve taken bad beatings before… g-get up… get up…”

Smile whimpered from under his mask, his breath shuddering as the realization began to set in. No amount of coping or self-explanation could lead to anything else in his mind. The knife he had in his hand slipped out from under and clanged against the pavement. “No… no no no no… nonononono… V-Vile…”

Ryu brought his hand back down as he watched Smile become a pathetic mess, the man falling to his knees as he reached out with a hand towards where his brother lay. It was a pitiable sight, were it not for the fact that moments ago he had tried to gut open Samira. Ryu felt *nothing* for this worm who had, up until this point, been a roadblock. “And you’ll join him in the afterlife.” the Queen said as he stared down with unblinking, unwavering eyes to Smile. Though his words didn’t reach the Twin as he cried out in agony to his brother’s demise.

Ryu brought his katana to his side and took a hand to the hilt, preparing to put an end to the Twin’s misery. “死ね.” Ryu muttered as he unsheathed only a portion of his blade. A small, almost imperceptible ball that morphed the space around it flew towards Smile and, on impact, expanded outwards. Those who could see watched as Smile was torn apart by several slashes from an orb that enveloped him, which left him a disembodied mess on the ground.

The fight was over. The Twins were dead, and now they were unimpeded to leave. Ryu sheathed his blade back as he straightened up again and let out a sigh. He tightened the strap of the bag on his back, as it was still secure, before bottling up his potentiality again by receding the aura around him. His will had prevailed again against the odds. Now his focus was elsewhere as he wrapped Samira’s arm over his shoulder to help her walk.

“Appreciate it, Ryu.” Samira chuckled in pain as she was reminded of a similar situation where her Queen had to help her walk back to her penthouse. Of course that time was because she was heavily intoxicated, not injured as she was right now.

Camila panted heavily, exhausted from the extended amount of blocking she had to perform against the incredibly relentless twin, she dropped the panel to the side, rising a tiny cloud of dust as it landed on the deteriorated floor. She removed her mask, also letting it fall on the ground, she rubbed her forearm against her drenched face, glad that she could now rest easy for a moment. “Shit…it’s finally over, those fucks just refused to go down.” Camila’s attention turned to Maria, who happened to be the closest to her. “Hey, those were some good calls you made…Nice job.” Her face relaxed a little as things finally started to settle down (ignoring the still-present earthquake). She then took a look at her shoulder, the knife still buried inside her, she instinctively reached for it, but a wave of pain caught her off-guard as she wrapped her fingers around the handle, causing a very small movement of the blade which was enough to kick her pain receptors into high gear.

Sylvie opened his eyes to the puddle of vomit at his feet, taking a deep breath as he looked back to Jennifer.

“I’m sorry, I-”

His voice trailed off as he walked back to the ledge, getting a glimpse of the second body dismembered on the ground. He didn’t need to take a closer look, knowing better than to stare too long and be sick again from the gore. Looking away he got the equipment ready to carry back downstairs.

“Don’t be, the first kill is often the hardest. A reminder of how fleeting a human life really is. You did good, your efforts saved a lot of people.”

Sylvie remained quiet for a moment before speaking up again: “We did it, let’s just go back quickly, before this place collapses.”

Sylvie held his arms out to pick Jennifer back up so that they could return to safer ground.

”Thank you… for all the help”

“Don’t mention it. It’s you who I should be thanking. Sorry for giving you a hard time… you’re all right in my book.”

Maria was deeply satisfied by the pain he had brought to the masked figure that had piqued her curiosity before, but not in a sadistic way. It was more of a comeuppance, though, she realized the futility in caring about things like comeuppance in their line of work. This satisfaction was partly stunted by the unexpected head to head collision she received. Ugh, from now on, no helmet off until we’re at the safehouse. she thinks. Still, she couldn’t help but notice the drool coming out from behind the mask. The tail had done it. She didn’t even have to worry about being on the ground as she saw the bullet fly through his head, and the execution of his brother shortly after. She stays on the ground for another while, taking a deep breath before getting up. “Thanks, but driving’s usually more my thing. I was just trying not to get in the way. Y’know, not become a hostage.” She responds to Camila, before adding “If you need anything let me know. I could probably find more water to make ice for wounds.” though, her mind instantly goes for one thing. Transportation. She immediately begins looking around for an suv of some sort that is still usable after both the battle and earthquake.

“Ugh…Don’t worry, I’ll take care of this later once we’re somewhere safe.” Said Camila as she stared at the knife. “Hurts like hell but i’d rather not sever anything else by mistake, also don’t worry, my tail regrows quickly.” In fact, the appendage had already stopped bleeding by now. She pulled out her phone, typing a message to her favorite junior.

A vibration echoed from within the recesses of Sylvie’s suit as he walked step by step down the stairs with Jennifer. This was strange, as he only allowed notifications for the most important contacts in his phone, not wanting to get distracted with unimportant news on a job. Shifting the way he was holding Jennifer and her weaponry to support her with one arm, he paused in the stairwell to take a glimpse at the phone.

Great job, drinks are on me later, tell Jenn too

Sylvie smiled, looking forward to seeing Camila again. He didn’t reply, putting the phone away, using both arms to support the injured Jennifer again.

“How are you doing, Jennifer, do you think you can make it to celebratory drinks later? Once you are patched up.”

However, Sylvie didn’t get an answer as Jennifer had passed out rather quickly. With the adrenaline of the fight having passed, the pain from her foot was too much as she hung limp from Sylvie’s support.

"Jennifer? Jennifer?"

Sylvie hurried even faster down the stairs now, aware of just how bad Jennifer was doing.

Thankfully, it seems that with the earthquake, most people had taken refuge in buildings, leaving a wide array of options for transport. Eventually, he finds another van nearby, opening the rear and seeing it was full of some furniture. The first visible smirk of the day makes an appearance on Maria’s face, as she expands her shadow to the ground nearby and passes the furniture over to there, leaving the van empty. Jumping in and into the driver's seat, she hotwires it, hearing a low hum from the engine as it turns on. Maria, now speaking through the earpiece, says “Guys, I got us a ride out. Though, I think it may be a silent ride back.” She was thinking of her little music gadget that was destroyed alongside the original van. Maybe I oughta carry two from now on, hmm… oh well. She reaches her hand into her jacket, then deeper into her shadow dimension, reaching for a mango popsicle. Feeling she only had one other, she wondered if it would be rude to eat one without having enough to invite everyone. She decides to not do it. She could wait a little longer to eat it in private.

Everyone’s earpieces chime in as their connection is restored back properly for long distance comms, despite the still soft rumblings of the earthquake hitting the city in various locations. “Earthquake seems to be calming down… for now.” Cal announced to everyone through the static, “Though, there’s no telling how long that will stay. A freak occurrence like this means anything’s possible.”

“HEY! We need to get somewhere safe. Now."

From the building, Sylvie emerged, carrying Jennifer with him and making a beeline for the other Tigers. Though panic couldn't be seen on his face due to the mask, his voice showed it.

“Jennifer needs a doctor, or hospital."

He looked down at the unconscious Tiger, then at the others, realising quickly that they were in a similar boat to her. Sylvie had been fortunate to avoid any injury from the twins, and felt a twinge of guilt as he fell silent.

Samira looked up as she heard the sense of urgency in Sylvie’s voice. “Shit,” her eyebrows furrowed at the sight of an unconscious Jennifer. As much as the two got on each other's nerves, she was still her friend. “If we take her to a doctor or hospital, they will be asking questions.” Turning her head to Ryutaro, she looked to see what he wanted to do about the predicament. “I don’t know where he is right now but Z can help her. Cal would just have to contact him.”

“Hospitals are too packed by now anyway.” Ryu commented before bringing his hand to his earpiece. “Cal-”

“Yeah, I heard. I’ll call it in now to him, just head over to the usual spot.” Cal spoke up through the Tigers’ comms, “Before anything else happens.”

Another rumble filled the air, shaking the ground and buildings around the Tigers a bit, but dissipated just as quickly. “That’s our cue. Let’s get out of here.” Ryu ordered to the rest of the Tigers as he helped Samira over to the new transport that Maria had acquired. The others joined soon thereafter, with Jennifer being given space to lie down on the seats in the back as she was currently unconscious. Samira took a seat near the center of the SUV, along with Camila, while Sylvie and Maria took seats in the front.

Ryu however remained outside as he tapped on the van: “Head on out. I’ll find my own way back. I have a call to make.”

As Maria sped off with the others to safety, Ryu watched for a moment as the van disappeared around a corner before pulling out his phone and dialing a number. The line rang for a few moments before it was audibly heard on the other end: “Mr. Hashimoto. I knew it would be you.”

“Which Gordon am I talking to? I’m here to discuss your transfer of assets and permanent withdrawal from New Oasis.”

@Beann Roda the Red Roda the Red WhiskeyMarten WhiskeyMarten @Uasal @Shoya
Screenshot_192 (3).jpg d408228fb08b53fb6bb94487068b54cd.png 42d5df9674bffb86dc50c48c2bf19107.jpg
Boltius "BLITZ" Beckman & Gideon "EVIELLE" Gray ft. Delson "BOOGIEMAN" Landa
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 2 [Tactical Mayhem]
Escaping Lower Central...
Boltius, Tatsuya, Ashley, Inigo, Jericho, Bandy, Callista, Eric, Gideon
Just as he felt his mind get overwhelmed by the situation at hand, Gideon saw out of the corner of his eye a blur of orange and flames quite literally bolt to intercept that monster of a woman. Horror rose in Gideon’s throat. No, Bolt couldn’t do this! Just as the Phoenixes were too weak to face off against these demons, Bolt couldn’t expect to survive either!

Almost echoing Ashley’s actions, Gideon stepped out of the ruined car to try to stop Bolt. But Gideon mentally restrained himself from doing so. Bolt had given them an opportunity, and Gideon would be doing the equivalent of slapping Bolt in the face if he didn’t take advantage of it.

“We have the best chance of survival if we group up,” Gideon scanned the battlefield and projected the thought to everyone he could see. With that done, Gideon began to rush towards the wall, intent on using the opportunity Bolt provided to blow it open.

But then the ground turned to liquid. His arms floundering, Gideon almost lost his balance. What was happening? An earthquake? Historically, New Oasis hadn’t had an earthquake in decades! What was happening?

Gideon then realized that the ground was quite literally crumbling in front of him. The earthquake was shattering the barrier that separated Upper Central from Lower Central. And if they all fell through…

“Beckman!” Gideon shouted as he rushed headlong towards Bolt, tripping and falling to his hands and feet as everything turned to jelly, but still persevering to reach the Phoenix. Gideon had a feeling that if the cop fell, she’d be completely fine. But Bolt would just become fruit ripe for the picking.

Ahh, but alas~ Misfortune’s bell tolled, and by the time Gideon reached the Ace—right as he was about to tackle the scarred-face woman—everything gave way beneath them.

In rapid response, the surrounding Masks retreated from the expanding circumference of the sinkhole, but Boltius and the rest of the Phoenixes were already prey to the rocky tongue's undulating tides.

To some avail, Boltius commenced climbing—We have the best chance of survival if we group up, he thought—clinging to every precarious crack and crevice as the landslide worked to swallow him deeper into the eye of the pit.

Finding a foothold on the ledge of a vertical, concrete slab as it snapped from a larger portion and sank, Boltius jumped, reaching for Gideon.

Then the true descent began when the bottom of the sinkhole broke open to reveal the distant cityscape of Lower Central below.

Boltius fell, and so did Gideon.

With Lower Central at his back, racing up in earnest, he stared wide-eyed at the growing maw of the quaking district above. Debris rained down; concrete, water, dirt, rebar, piping, cars… bodies of the dead.

His mind went blank… What were the odds? An earthquake…

In spite of himself, the corners of Boltius’ mouth turned up. “Heh…” Smile growing wider. “Haha…” Then, all of the sudden, he bursted into laughter, “AHAHAHA-HAA!!... YEAH!” He pumped a fist, “...THAT’S ONE FUCKIN’ WAY OUT!... WOOOOOH! HOLY SHIT!!!”

A moment passed for the predicament to really set in.

Then, “...Oh shit.” Boltius’ expression went serious.

“GORDEON!!” he called out, sprawling his limbs to make himself less aerodynamic and clear the short distance between them, and he took hold of Gideon’s shirt at the shoulder.

The weightlessness that Gideon felt as he fell was nearly panic inducing. It was as liberating as flying, but the sight of Upper Central falling away from him ruined the illusion.

Desperately, when he felt the snag in his shirt, Gideon swung his arm around to grab Bolt’s other shoulder, connecting the two of them in their trajectory downward.

“We’re good, we’re going to survive this!” Gideon shouted as they fell. Whether that was to convince Bolt or to convince himself, even Gideon didn’t know. “This is not how we’re going to die!” The words left the Ace visibly moved in that he stared with blank awe at Gideon as they spiraled, together, toward their forthcoming doom.

He needed a plan though, Gideon. Even if they survived the fall, there were countless explosives in his satchel that would explode and kill the both of them. In fact, Bolt coming over to Gideon made his survival chances slimmer. Realizing this fact, Gideon reached down and ripped his satchel off its straps so that he was grasping it within his hand. For half a moment, Gideon was tempted to cast off the dangerous bag.

Then Gideon realized what it could be used for. As the ground rapidly reached them, using all the strength that his sad excuse of an HP body could muster, Gideon chucked the satchel at the ground.

Catching onto the strategy, Boltius reached to try plucking the satchel from its course, still clinging to Gideon with his opposite hand, “YO- HOLD UP- WAITWAITWAITWAITWAI-”

A massive explosion erupted, shrapnel that wasn’t blocked by the bag piercing through their skin in white-hot pinpricks of pain, save for Bolt’s immunity to heat. The explosion also served to reverse their trajectory momentarily, letting them fall to the ground at a considerably slower speed.

All at once, the blast force blew Boltius’ arm behind him, triggering a nasty snap that twisted his stomach into a knot. His head lurched back, immediate pain surging through his neck. His spine was forced to arch beyond its natural limit. One of his shoes flew off. Then, disoriented, he collided with Lower Central to find himself folded over a large chunk of concrete, impaled on two rebars through his right flank.

He and Gideon were separated in the explosion.

Debris of all shapes and sizes continued to rain down.

Pinned where he was, unable to move, Bolt’s mind reeled. He coughed, spitting blood, then vomited. “F-...” more vomit, “-UUUGHCK!”

Meanwhile, the explosion yanked Gideon’s arm back, a sickening snap drowned out by a burst of adrenaline and shock. He was launched a small distance away from Boltius, almost landing on his feet. It was much more of an unfortunate circumstance than it sounded though. As Gideon landed on one foot, the inertia snapped it backward, and Gideon collapsed onto the ground.

“AAARGH!” Gideon screamed. It hurt, it hurt so much. But a part of him felt that the pain was a mile away. Above him he saw the debris falling, and he knew that he had to get out of there. Getting to his feet with a scream, Gideon hobbled over to Boltius.

“Oh Satan, oh no, I’m so sorry,” Gideon shouted, horrified at the sight of Bolt’s injuries. He felt sick to his stomach seeing all of it, and it wasn’t because of the throw up. Yet, he knew that if he didn’t pull Bolt out, the falling debris would spell his end.

Pulling Bolt caused shrill screams of pain to radiate from Gideon’s broken arm, but he knew he would have to push through the pain. He also needed to make sure that Bolt went out of the rebar at the same angle he came in. But since his phobia of blood made him unable to look directly at Bolt’s wound, he could only pray and guess. “Come on Bolt. You’ve got to get out of this. I said that we’re not dying here!”

“Eeugh!... That’s a nasty predicament, there, buddy,” a voice what’s source came in the form of blond-and-brown hair requested attention over Gideon’s cries and Bolt’s stifled snarls of pain, and Bolt—though he couldn’t lift his head in his position—recognized it. “Del-...-son?” he choked out.

Delson flinched. “You remember me?” feigning teary-eyed joy.

“Not-...” Boltius took a deep, ragged, wheezing breath. “Not the-”

“Time. Not the time. I gotchu. Say no more!” Delson quickly shuffled over to the Ace’s side opposing Gideon and laid a hand gently upon his back. “On three, say Boogie-... Not the time,” then he and Boltius vanished.

They reappeared behind Gideon, with Delson supporting the full weight of the Ace in a sloppy embrace.

“Really jolly, aren’t you,” Gideon winced. He finally got over the shock of seeing the Phoenix suddenly appear behind him. The villain was grateful for the help, especially since Gideon was in no position to do anything but flee.

Delson looked at Gideon then, “It’s what I’m known for~... Think you’ve got’im from here?” But as he said that, the weight he was holding seemed to lighten, and he realized that Boltius was beginning to support himself now… A flash of concern flitted across his face, “Uh, Ace, are you su-”

“I’m good… We gotta-...” A struggling breath. “-go… Mmgh… help others...” Boltius shuffled his feet, teetering for balance.

Delson gave an awkward smile, “Uhh- hah... Maybe you let me handle that?... You two oughta get on outta here before the whole district above comes crashin' down, 'cause ya'll ain't doin' a damn thing like that,” he referred to their injuries. “Hell, Ace,” he gestured to the blood gushing from Bolt's side, crimson liquid seeping between the fingers that cupped it, “That's if you even make it twenty feet...”

Gideon gave Boltius a quiet, concerned look while he did his best to get into a gait that didn’t agitate his broken leg. Neither of them were in any condition to help others… but they had to do their best regardless.

After a pause: “Mmgh- fuck, he's right...” Bolt grunted, eyeing Gideon, observing his injuries. “...Let's dip... We can-” he hobbled up to Gideon and took him by the wrist of his good arm, forcing Gideon to wrap an arm around his shoulders, and Boltius wrapped an arm around Gideon's all the same. “...-support each other's weight.”

With that, the escape from Lower Central was on.

(Interacting w/ Everyone)
(Mentioned no one)
simj26 simj26 Lucem Lucem Coyote Hart Coyote Hart Wxnter Wxnter angel doe angel doe Roda the Red Roda the Red Elenion Aura Elenion Aura
Pheonix Arc 3: Scene 2 [Tactical Mayhem]
Lower Central?
Calli, Ash, Bandy, Rico, Ini, Eric, Gid, Bolt
Tactical Mayhem
The sound of the earthquake rumbled around them, like the growling of a giant beast that had been awakened from its slumber. Within moments, Callista found herself weightless, suspended in mid-air. The wind rushed past her face, her golden hair dancing wildly in the wind as her heart pounded like a drum inside her chest.

No, no, no..!

Death awaited her at the bottom with open arms, and she felt hot flames of panic rise to her chest, making it hard to breathe. Callista gasped for air, but it was no use. Tears welled up in her eyes, and she swallowed a hard lump in her throat, ready to resign herself to her wretched fate.

Just when all hope had been lost, Callista caught sight of Ashley's outreached hand. It was like a ray of light shining through the darkness, offering a glimmer of hope amidst the harrowing end that awaited them both. Without a moment's hesitation, she extended her arm and reached out to him, the tips of their fingers brushing lightly as they desperately tried to reach each other.

"Ashley..!!" she released a shrill cry.

Their fingers intertwined, and soon Callista was in Ashley's warm embrace. She felt her fears melt away like snow during the early days of spring, but the chill still lingered, reminding her of their impending doom.

At the very least, she wasn't alone.

Callista raised her head to look at Ashley, his face contorted with a mixture of frustration and self-blame. She’d seen this look on his face before, when she took him in after she found him lying at death's door after the hurricane. Even in deep slumber as he fought to stay alive, he faulted himself for the lives he could not save. It seemed that such nightmares not only haunted his dreams, they also pestered him in his waking life.

"Snap out of it!" she raised her voice so he could hear her above the howling winds.

As Ashley processed her words, old faces and memories were forced out of his mind. Instead of visions of red hair, he now only saw flaxen tresses flowing in the windy currents. He was glad for that. Seeing his life flash before his eyes was a bad sign, and he hadn't given up just yet.

"Relax, I know what I'm doin'!" Raising his voice, he let Callista know that his head was still in the game. He wasn't completely out of it. It may not have been the best solution, but he had a plan. Although, most of it came down to chance.

“How can I relax when I know what you’re attempting to do??” Callista shot back in disbelief. As a stubborn act of defiance, she tried—barely—to wriggle herself out of Ashley’s firm grasp, but he was too strong. He’d barely noticed her pathetic attempts at being dramatic.

"Unless you got somethin' up your sleeve, try not to squirm around!" The only response he got in return were furrowed brows and a sharp, defeated glare. Ashley didn't know if Callista could even do anything in this situation, but if she couldn't, he needed her to stay still. If she slipped away, then all of this was for nothing.

Wrapping an arm around Callista's waist, he pulled her in closer, making sure she stayed above him as his back faced the quickly approaching ground. If he could absorb the impact, she would probably make it out alive. As for himself...

"Just hold still for a sec, will ya?" Not in the mood to strain himself more than he already had, he spoke directly into her ear, forcing out his exhausted voice. "It's gonna be fine..."

What started as a mere spark of attraction—small, scattered, unnoticeable—ignited into flames that glowed and flickered, fueled by emotions that Callista kept hidden inside. A warm feeling washed over her, and her gaze softened as she looked deep into Ashley’s blue eyes. They gleamed with courage and determination, yet she caught faint traces of sadness and regret in them.

Callista said nothing. But with the uncertainty of the next moments to come, there were three words that begged to be released from their shackles. They rattled against the cages within her heart, and she found that she could no longer contain them.

"...I like you."

As the words escaped Callista's lips, she felt a veil lift within the crevices of her consciousness. The guilt, shame, and trauma that came with using her Potential to end the life of the man who had raised her—futile emotions that limited her—all of it had been replaced by a pure instinct to survive. Yet, there was another emotion that prevailed as she laid her hands flat on Ashley's chest and felt the beating of his heart.

It was a heartbeat she wanted to preserve.

In the blink of an eye, hundreds of butterflies gathered beneath them in a cluster, their vivid crimson wings fluttering and beating in unison, slowing down the momentum of their fall. The roaring winds hushed, and they could hear each other's deep breaths as they stared at each other wide-eyed.

Stuck in momentary disbelief, Ashley held Callista's gaze until he felt his back meet with a solid surface. Rather than the intense, body-shattering pain he had been expecting, there was only a soft tickle as the butterflies brushed against his skin and scattered away toward the falling debris that threatened to rain down on them. He watched them for a few seconds before his eyes settled on the woman in his arms once again.

Ashley’s lips parted, and he let out a deep breath before allowing his tensed muscles to relax. He was still alive. Once again, he had Callista to thank for that.

"Not bad, Princess..." He let the silence hang for a beat before a tired smirk worked its way across his face. "Your timing's kinda shit, though." He tried to break the tension with a teasing remark, wanting to bring down the heavy atmosphere now that their lives were seemingly no longer in danger. However, there was still something else he needed to address. The joke wasn't only aimed at the timing of her Potential.

"I won't leave ya hangin'. Just lemme catch my breath." Laying his head against the cold ground that nearly ended his life, he looked up. He'd deal with all the other stuff later. His mind was too scrambled to give her sudden confession the consideration it deserved, even though he already had a feeling how things would go. For now, he just needed a breather before making sure the others made it out safely.

Placing his other hand on the back of Callista's head, Ashley settled into his position as he waited for his Potential to heal the wounds he had sustained. "I'll say it properly," he said.

Is catching his breath more important than addressing my feelings?

Seeing the peaceful look on Ashley's face, Callista chose not to voice out her thoughts. Instead, she rolled to the side and lay on the ground beside him.

As the crimson trail of beating wings above them finally faded from view, Ashley and Callista continued to lay in the bed of debris. After escaping what felt like never-ending chaos and bloodshed, they were able to savor a moment of tranquility and rest their weary bodies. However, they couldn't indulge in it forever.

They still needed to find the others.

With that in mind, the two of them emerged from the rubble after finding their strength, now on the hunt for those who survived.

Arisa McClellan
Dragons Arc 3: Scene 3 [Ripples of Stardust]
Zhànzhēng Resort, East District
Hiram, Kazue, Ottilie, Omar, Mirza
Ripples of Stardust

Arisa stared at Hifumi in utter shock and disbelief. This mission was not going according to plan at all. While she didn't know the group well, she sensed something deeply wrong with how Hifumi spoke. As he continued to talk, Arisa could feel the fear well up inside her. "Listen here you lil' prick-" The air was becoming more charged and hostile, but no one was moving a muscle. Well, not like Arisa had any deep connections with these people, so what did it matter? She could be the one to take action.

Arisa reached behind her, gripping her naginata, but not pulling it out. She was too slow. Hifumi had already struck the young man working at the tech deck. She had no personal ties to them, but Dragons are family. Arisa pulled out her weapon in a lightning-quick motion and moved into a defensive position. Even more to her surprise, the other young rookie with pink hair had also acted in response. "Hey! What do you mean you tried to trip us up?! Ain't you one of us? Answer." It appeared that whoever had taken over Hifumi's body had no intention of entertaining her questions.

Arisa's eyes darted back and forth between the group and Hifumi before she noticed a strange sound in the distance. As the sound of the protesters outside grew louder, uncontrolled desperation clouded Arisa's eyes. Arisa wasn't the brightest crayon in the box, but she suddenly realized what was happening. As everything dawned on her, she lowered her weapon. "Ah, 糞 (kuso)! They set us up. "

BluEndings BluEndings YumenoTsukishiro YumenoTsukishiro azenva azenva Saturn_moon Saturn_moon
Last edited:
CS Link 1, 2, 3
New Oasis Arc 3: Scene 2 [The Dragon and the Phoenix/Hunks in the City]
Upper Central District
PARTICIPANTS: Helva, Isaiah, Kanna, Kaede, Meirin, Rin, Shen, Vulken, Yong-Yut, Sebatian, Chikage, Celestine, Jozef, Nikolai, Tri, Markus, Toru

As Sebastian kicked the door open and stepped out, Country Roads continued to blare.

"Oh, you're here too," Sebastian said in surprise when he looked at his surroundings. In front of him were a white-haired, posh-looking gentleman and a scruffier man with a gun-like weapon next to him. Sebastian ruffled his own hair to get the messy look back in before he stood up proud and tall to face the King and Jack. His words were as casual as a Saturday afternoon, but Sebastian's stance clearly stood in opposition to the two of them, "Off to cause trouble like our other friends?"

… What in the hell just happened? After a singular step away from the hectic mess- per his boss’s orders- a car blaring some truly horrendous music came to a crash before them. Nikolai jerked back, brows furrowed in astonished bewilderment. How in the world had this man just trot out of that vehicle like nothing happened? Nikolai swore he was the only sane one in this city…

The heavy metal in the white haired man’s grasp felt truly comforting in a moment like this, his gloved hand adjusting his grip on it with restless indecision. It was time to go now- but this worm just had to get in their way… Nikolai sighed. Of course, they could always just flee anyhow, but who’s to say this Buffoon wouldn't just go after them? He sucked his teeth in annoyance. Truly troublesome…

His posture straightened, legs spreading and tensing for an anticipated fight, while he tightened his hold on his lance. He eyed Tri from the side, keeping his main focus on this strange man- but awaiting an order from his Serpent King.

Tri didn’t think much about this, though.

No, we already killed people on our way here,” he answered honestly. “We’re here to get our runts that were saving people here-

Tri paused. Celeste and Jozef weren’t around. He hummed. He wanted to save them for the friendship project and showed his support for the ‘save people’ side and ‘kill people’ side to showcase his support for the freedom of Serpents. What a pain.

Hm.” Tri’s gaze met Nikolai’s and his lips curled up in a diabolical way (a smile he practiced hard).

N. You decide.

Without wasting another second, Nikolai extended his arm, rushing forward and swinging the heavy gold horizontally toward Sebastian's head, aiming for the spikes near the lance’s head to gash open the man’s skull. Tri didn’t waste his time either. He pointed Lovemaker 3000 at the police and-


Hm. Tri pulled a new magazine out. Reload.

Sebastian raised his left arm, using his hand to catch Nikolai’s lance by the handle. It clanged as it impacted with Sebastian’s reinforced skin. A sadistic grin spread across Sebastian’s face as he faced the Jack of Serpents. It seemed that talking things out was going to be out of the question.

So you are here to cause trouble. Well, I fancy myself a troublemaker too,” Sebastian said before he released Nikolai’s spear and counterattacked by slashing horizontally at the Jack using his hyphae whip.

Nikolai cursed, swinging his lance so it would collide with the whip with a loud CLANG, while quickly ducking down to avoid it, a hand holding him up in a one-handed handstand as he pushed his weight back onto his feet.

He adjusted his grip on the lance, his hold lower now so he would have more distance between them. He jabbed the sharp point of the lance forward towards Sebastian’s chest.

Sebastian grunted in discomfort and pain when the lance struck him in the chest. It didn’t pierce through his armor, but the shockwave of it reverberated throughout his torso, and the impact hurt his chest. Sebastian raised his whip to counterattack– since his weapon was an extension of his body, he could simply lengthen his whip. But then, all of a sudden–

There we go.” A tennis ball-like projectile flew toward the dueling pair and exploded into a cloud of pink. A white glow covered Nikolai promptly. Sebastian wasn’t as lucky.

As the fight boiled, the ground beneath them continued to shake. Cracks formed on the concrete. Tri also ran to the middle of the street, away from the buildings.

Sebastian coughed and breathed in the sweet air. Immediately, he felt his face and extremities heat up, and a pink flush settled on his cheeks. His breaths were heavy, much heavier than how he usually was when fighting. Sebastian swayed back and forth against the earthquake, an unwell feeling swelling within him. He wanted blood. He wanted to see someone in absolute agony and suffering. There were two Serpents right in front of him… why not see if they would suffice?

Using the smokescreen of pink clouds as cover, Sebastian released some spores in Niko’s face and his hyphae whip, which was getting longer by the second, snaked out to try to grab Tri and pull him closer.

The flat landscape provided a clear view of anything approaching. At the last moment, Tri noticed the whip and tried to evade- only to trip on the cracked pavement. The whip grabbed him square around the torso. His left forearm was uncomfortably binded to his chest as well. It wasn’t good.


Yeet.” Tri tried to pull back at the whip.

Sebastian stumbled forward from the pull, crashing body first into Niko, the latter grunting on impact. The closeness of the Jack further awakened the bloodthirst that threatened to make Sebastian’s head spin with lust. He could almost hear the Jack’s heart reverberating within his chest. He wanted to see what it would look like if Niko’s white hair was all covered red with gore. But with neither his knife with him nor his whip, which was tangled up with the Serpent King, Sebastian could only let the feelings frustrate him.

Yaat!” Sebastian echoed Tri’s exclamation by raising his free fist and throwing a punch at Niko. With the hand that grasped the whip, he gave a counter-pull in an attempt to pull Tri close enough to trip Niko. In truth though, it simply looked like one hell of a weird game of tug of war.

Nikolai quickly spun out of the way, using his lance to vault his way over the whip. In a flurry, he whirled behind Sebastian, setting the nearest sharp spike near the lance’s head against Sebastion’s throat. It seemed this whole ordeal was starting to tire Nikolai out, if his panting breaths and sweaty neck were to say anything. Nikolai never had the best stamina after all.

Clever,” Sebastian said, his free hand reaching up to grasp the spike as he did his best to grin at Nikolai. Lust and bloodthirst roiled within Sebastian, begging to be clawed out. But he could only satisfy himself with the pleasant prickly sensation from Nikolai's lance prodding his neck. "Now what? Are you gonna carve my neck out?"

He held his weapon tighter against the other man’s throat, swallowing down his heavy breaths. In a dry, disgusted voice, he shot out, “Don’t be ridiculous. If I killed you here, blood would get all over me.” He cringed at the thought, a revolted shiver crawling down his spine. “Do you realize how disgusting that would be? Ugh.

Nikolai glanced up towards Tri, before tensing his shoulders. “Release him first.

"Actually, we spread love and wrath on our way here, so hundreds will get rekt if you don't go help that." Tri cheerfully added to the threat. He smooched the air at Sebastian.

Sebastian couldn’t understand Nikolai’s intentions. Blood was a magnificent shade of red. Getting it on yourself was dirty, yes, but it was quite like getting mucky by jumping in puddles when you were a kid. His thoughts hazy, he could only respond to Nikolai, “No? That doesn’t sound disgusting?

But to address the tied up Tri posed a dangerous possibility. “Aphrodisiacs… and wrath… while people are trying to evacuate? Have you gone mad?!

Tri looked offended. "You don't understand the essence of coolness."

The essence of your coolness is cringe,” Sebastian fired back.

Tri pouted like a teenage girl. He considered manslaughter.

Here, let me go, and we can pretend that none of this happened,” Sebastian said, cutting off the hyphae that connected him to Tri. Although Sebastian suspected Nikolai wanted him to directly untie Tri, it was, quite literally, now out of Sebatian’s hands. Despite the heavy feeling that was sinking into his limbs and the heat that was rushing to his head, Sebastian knew that he had to focus on his duty, and that meant saving the people that Tri and Nikolai terrorized.

Rubbing his sore arm, Tri looked contemplatively at Sebastian.

He shrugged. "N, let's go. I need to help the lab after this." He lost the bet. New Oasis would have peace… for two weeks.

Nikolai sighed, a countdown from five echoing in his mind. Fucking imbeciles, the lot of them. He retracted his lance from Sebastion’s throat, shoving him from behind then immediately wiping the gloved hand that touched him on his clothes. He followed after Tri without another word.

Weirdos,” Sebastian groaned, rubbing his throat. He stumbled a bit in his tracks as he went the direction that Tri and Nikolai came from. If he was having such trouble staying on his feet, Sebastian could only imagine what Tri and Nikolai’s other victims felt.

Sebastian shook on his feet the trembling of Upper Central almost caused him to fall to the ground. He needed to help with the evacuation. The people that had been drugged needed medical attention. Chikage-senpai was definitely helping all he could on his end, and Sebastian had to put in his fill. And hopefully, there would be someone handsome enough at the scene to take away the… affliction that Tri had put on him.

And so, with that, Sebastian continued down the shaking path.

Collab with: Damafaud Damafaud Caffeine_Obsessed Caffeine_Obsessed
Last edited:
Phoenixes Arc 3: Scene 3 [Whole World Blind]
West District
Charlie, Hector, Hide, Raquel, Yukito, Zachariah
Alicia, Dante

As the rookie rested on the sidewalk, he took notice of a message directed towards him by Hawk. They were now leaving, a relieving notification for someone who’s had enough of this damned place for a lifetime, the lack of any talks about any of the others being injured or killed also brought him an extra layer of joy, had he known that his inaction caused the death of his allies, that would truly have been unforgivable in his eyes, he’d experienced that before and never wanted to repeat it. However, he didn’t even bother to reply, lacking any sort of enthusiasm to do as much. He should probably get up soon, though.


Hector had feared the worst seeing the Rookie lying on the pavement. He hadn't been out of his sight for long, but a lot can happen in a short amount of time, and if Charlie had been severely hurt then who knows what Hector might've done? As he approached, it was more clear that any damage was surface level, but it didn't stop the Queen down crouching beside him.

"Are you okay? Where are they? Where did they go?"

He spoke frantically, placing a hand on Charlie's shoulder.

Charlie caught sight of the crouched Queen, a new wave of anxiety growing within him as he new that he needed to twist the truth. “Queen…I’m sorry…” He dragged his torso up, sitting on the floor, faking a struggle to do so, vastly overdramatizing his condition. “I-I had the girl…but, someone attacked me behind my back.”

Hector's eyes narrowed with a multitude of emotions.

"Was it that orc-looking man? Are you hurt badly?"

“I-I think it was him, I’m fine but they left before I could get back up…” He hoped that his abilities of deception were good enough . “I failed you…”

Hector shut his eyes for a moment. His frustration was clear, and why wouldn't he be frustrated right now? He sighed, holding a hand out to support Charlie. He could hear the sounds of their getaway vehicle behind them now, and replied to Zach after a moment of hesitating, looking at the damage around them.

"Yes. We'll come back to this another time."

Looking back at Charlie, he grimaced. "Come on."

Charlie took Hector’s hand, lifting himself off the ground, once again, overplaying his pain, faking a difficulty to move properly. A harder beating from that guy really would’ve come handy. “Hopefully we’ll get them next time.”

Hector squeezed his hand tightly, the tension clear. "We will."

With Hector’s help, Charlie entered the van, both pleased to see everyone safe, but also undeniably disturbed by Raquel’s gory visage (not like he was much better, zombie and Nico blood splattered all over him) as well as the clearly terrified hostages. “Hey guys…How did it go?” said Charlie as he found the tiniest bit of space to sit on. Hector and Yukito followed him in, squeezing next to Charlie, and waiting in silence for an answer.

“Well enough,” Zach replied with a shrug, glancing back at the hostages from the rearview mirror. “Bosses gets to decide what to do with ‘em, though I’m hoping we pinch off a good penny~”

“...Were we supposed to keep them alive?” Raquel spoke with a hint of surprise in her voice. If that were the case, then a wave of embarrassment went down her ears. “If that was the case, I’m sorry, Hector.” The words were sincere and probably the rare moments that she didn’t going ballistic. She didn’t move to blame Hide either as this was entirely her fault.

"I'll deal with them. You did good." Hector's reply was sharp. Even if his words were positive, he didn't sound happy.

Sensing the one eyed queen was in a bad mood, Hide avoided him entirely- anxiety making him want to avoid any contact with the other’s wrath. Now inside the van, he reached forward to squish Charlie’s cheeks with one hand, before sitting back down. Hide crossed his arms, a pout on his face as he stared up at the ceiling. "...Thought you were dead you fucker."

“S-Sorry…I’m glad you’re okay too, Hide, everyone too, really!”

Not looking back to the white-haired veteran, Hector raised a hand in warning. ”Cut it out, Hide. Nobody’s dead. Bring us back to HQ, now.” Barking an order at the driver, Hector fell into silence.

Nodding solemnly, Zach pulled the gear shift and stepped on the gas pedal, once more starting the thrill ride as the ground below the Pheonixes continued to shake.



Securing the Future
East District, Tech Expo
Jesper, Amari, Sophie, Kasumi, "Jane"
Securing the Future

“It’s my loss… I never expected someone so stupid…” Even in her perilous position, Corvo couldn’t help but crack a smirk. It didn’t last long, though. “But I don’t plan on going down without taking some of you with me... So instead of a lose-lose situation, I suggest you let me go, and I… never come back here again...” Her voice, low as a whisper, cut into the quiet.

But with her thumb rubbing the detonator, it wasn’t like she left much choice.

Jesper, having launched himself over the table, now huddled up next to Kasumi, still calming down and clutching his neck where the knife once rested.

That was it. Threatening the lives of civilians? Play it safe. Threatening the boy she was sworn to protect? Play it safe. But they touched Amari. No.

What the hell, Sophie had enough regrets. One more couldn't hurt.

"I reject your offer."

Though she could only see red, the bird's aim with her feather was true. It flew through the air, hurtling towards Jane's detonator.

Merda! Corvo just barely deflected the feather, saving her from injury. It, however, did its job. The detonator flew into the air.

Amari, who had started to lean away from Corvo because she knew better than to fuck around with fate when a bomb was involved, let out a surprised yelp as one of Sophie's feathers flew by. A grin spread across her lips seconds later.

“Thas my girl!" She reached and snatched the detonator out of the air. Carefully plucking the small bomb off her shirt, she stuck it back onto Corvo and took a step away.

Corvo had taken the moment to re-evaluate the situation. This might as well have been the crushing, embarrassingly undeniable defeat she so desperately tried to avoid. She smiled into applause. “Wonderful ~” If her Potential had been anything else.

Without missing a beat, the Phoenix took one of the chairs, kicking it up so the bottom pointed forward. Corvo charged it into Amari, looking to lock her hips and shoulders in the furniture’s four legs. As she collided, she pulled her silenced pistol from the belt, taking aim at the lights.

Darkness—save for the light shining in from the hall, only revealing a rectangle of ground.

The darkness didn't affect Amari much as her eyes quickly adjusted to the change, clenching her teeth and digging her claws into the floor to keep from sliding backward as Corvo charged at her with a chair, slamming into her.

This was starting to get tedious and Amari's anger only continued to flare which did little to help in keeping their potential under control. They could feel their mind getting foggy and smacked the side of their head, doing their best to keep focused on the matter at hand.

With an annoyed huff, Amari's arms and hands grew in size and she grabbed the two chair legs that had her shoulders locked in place. Holding tight, she began to force the metal legs apart, bending them rather easily. She did the same for the ones at her hips before giving the chair a strong shove, hoping to send Corvo stumbling.

Corvo let the chair take the brunt of the shove, directing it upward so she held it above herself. She spun the chair in one hand, using its outstretched leg to strike at Amari’s head. With her free hand, she plucked the bomb off herself and threw it backward where it stuck on the wall.

Unlike Amari, Sophie had no innate counter to the darkness. What she did have was a device. Propping her tablet against the wall, Sophie turned on its flashlight for the tiniest bit of illumination, just to try and get in on the action. Now that the shorter woman was out of immediate danger, the taller servant was free to berate herself for the idiocy of throwing a knife at a detonator.

Oh yeah, she could also contribute to the fight.

With another feather, Sophie aimed to take away Corvo’s wrestler-esque weapon with an HP-power throw. And with a few more natural blades, she took aim directly at Corvo herself. She slung her only means of ranged combat one at a time, in a slow barrage, as she approached, looking for an opportunity to enter melee.

Corvo slung the chair flat against herself like a shield, feeling each feather stick in with enough force to make her stumble a bit. One of them tore straight through the seat, coming inches from her chest. Anyone could do the math; chair versus two HPs equals death. Right. New plan.

But within the expo, things were not as calm as one could hope. The security were evacuating the guests, for the whirring of a clustered club of drones, magnetized together, made up the very definition of “trouble.” Bloodied and worn, but still with a shining smirk, the man swung the club into the wall.

Throughout the duration of the fight, Kasumi remained where she was. She wasn’t as adept in fighting as Amari or Sophie, so it was better to leave them to deal with Corvo. However, she wanted to help in some way.

It didn’t take her long to think of a plan. The drones in the convention center should still be active. If anything, Kasumi could secure the surrounding area so no one could come to assist Corvo.

Kasumi quickly pulled her phone out, attempting to connect to the nearest drones in the area. But something was off. She couldn’t move them. A quick check of their sensors showed something external was controlling them. But their position data was still accurate. And they were right behind the wall behind them.

Kasumi quickly got up to their feet, pulling Jesper along with her. She reached for her bag which was on the floor by her.

“Quick, take cover.”

was all Jesper could utter.

Behind the Dragons, crashes of metal and electricity exploded through, scattering debris of architecture and mangled drones like seasoning. Visible in the clouds of dust was a pair of glowing blue and pink eyes. “Pardon the intrusion, mes chéries! Baptiste shouted as he retracted the club. “We’re on a tight schedule!”

In front of Baptiste was the end of Kasumi’s taser gun, as she pointed it forward at him.

“You’re excused.”

Her finger squeezed the trigger, firing small metal barbs into the man’s chest. Her middle finger squeezed a second button underneath the trigger, delivering a paralyzing shock of electricity. Kasumi had modified the taser to have two different voltage settings, a low one and a high one, so that it would be effective on both HPs and non-HPs. Currently, it was set to high.

Baptiste, for all his smugness, couldn’t have foreseen the ambush of electrified barbs. They stuck right into him, sending his grin into a pulsating waviness. In an instant, the magnetized drones released from each other, dispersing as a cloud of machinery and whirs. The man fell flat on his back.

Jesper, having watched Kasumi’s execution the moment she got up to move, blushed pink like a peach.

Amid the chaos, Corvo had scooped up the fallen detonator and retreated from Amari. Flipping the chair so its blades pointed outward, she launched it into the ceiling where it stuck itself with the legs. A moment later, she prepared to strike at Amari, then… nothing. Corvo instead had dropped to the floor and rolled under the table. She used that moment to peek at the bomb’s glowing red dot.

The chair fell. She activated the bomb.

Yet another cloud of dust and rubble filled the room as the wall crumbled and panels fell from above.

And in the explosion, the chair shattered—save for the knives, which, fueled by the shockwave, shot out at Amari like bullets.

Everything was happening all at once and Amari didn't have even a second to breathe. Her mind was moving a mile a minute, vision blurring as she fell to the ground, breathing hard. She hardly noticed the explosion, nor did she register the knives even as one sliced the side of her face and another got lodged into her shoulder, the rest sinking into the wall behind her.

Amari's ears were ringing and pain exploded across her body as it changed. An ear-shattering scream rang out that morphed into a roar that shook the room.

Where there was once a person, there now stood a large wolf, around 7 feet tall currently, with long limbs and dark auburn fur. Glowing eyes locked on the redheaded woman that had taken cover beneath a table and there was only a heartbeat before the beast shot toward her, using one arm to fling the table at a wall where it broke into pieces.

Amari snarled, lips peeling back to reveal rows of razor-sharp teeth, and stepped onto Corvo, claws digging into her arms. There was still some restraint shown as she was doing her best not to rip the woman's head off right here and now, but that wouldn't last long and Amari knew it.

Sophie swept her wings in front of her to block the brunt of the blast. Standing firm as the shockwave slammed into her, she prepared to toughen another feather as a…sword? Machete, or bowie knife, more accurately. Plucking another blade from her plumage, the bird lunged at the grappled Corvo.

Kasumi yelped in surprise when the bomb went off, ducking and covering her head. She could feel the shockwave as the wind rushed past her. Small fragments of shrapnel dug into her back.

This was crazy. While Kasumi had been on plenty of assignments for the Dragons in the past, she was never in the thick of it. Almost always she was tucked away in a safe area, usually her apartment and supporting the others from afar.

As her ears rang, her eyes looked around for Jesper. Thankfully he seemed mostly unhurt. Kasumi’s eyes then spotted the metallic gleam of Corvo’s gun. Without a second thought, Kasumi moved towards it and grabbed it.

She watched plenty of videos about how guns worked, plus she was pretty familiar with many weapons already given her life in a gang. Her free hand reached up, pulling back the slide to reveal the bullet chamber and the top of the magazine. Unfortunately, the bullets Corvo had were non-HP.

Kasumi was about to toss the gun to the side when something in her mind clicked. She quickly moved back towards where the drones were. Some were on the ground after being released from Baptiste’s control. Setting the gun aside, Kasumi’s hands quickly found their way to the service panel of the drone. Prying it open, there were many different wires and switches. Kasumi pressed a couple of them and on the side of the drone, another compartment opened to reveal the ammo storage for the drone’s weapons. Sure enough, it was loaded with HP bullets that were the same size as the gun’s bullets.

With one hand, Kasumi grabbed a handful of the HP bullets while the other hand picked the gun back up, unloading the magazine. Unloading the non-HP bullets, Kasumi replaced them with the HP ones before sliding the magazine back into the gun, pulling the slide back and letting it click forward.

Her attention turned back to Corvo, who was pinned down by who Kasumi could only assume was Amari. She raised the gun up, aiming down its sights. At the other end was Corvo’s head.

Corvo’s gaze had darted everywhere, anything that could have gotten her out of the wolf’s claws, to get the upper hand. Only now did she focus on the end of the barrel. Mustering a smile, she exhaled. Ci vediamo, Albrechts.

The trigger was pulled, followed by a bang.

At the second explosion, Sophie skidded to a stop.

Where her head once was, a splatter of red and brain matter remained. In the wake of the destruction, only the sound of the drones lingered.

“Oh my God…” Jesper was first to break the silence. The whole time, he huddled in the corner, too taken aback by shock to contribute. Regardless, it was over…

angel doe angel doe azenva azenva FabulousTrash FabulousTrash
Sophia Ingram
Arc 3: Dragons Scene 1 [Securing The Future]
East District, Tech Expo, place where the amogus
Sophia, Jesper, Kasumi, Amari
Securing The Future
Ding, dong.

Sophie dropped her feather machete and rushed over to Amari’s giant form. Dashing in front of them, careful to not slip on the wet floor, the normally taller woman stopped to look up at the beast in front of her.

“Well…” Sophie redirected her gaze away for an instant to regard the destruction the fight had wrought, then turned her attention back upwards. “We did it.” Her exhausted expression shifted into a slight smile, then cracked into a rare full-blown grin, as she released a major sigh. She ran her fingers through Amari’s fur a bit, then stumbled away into the only surviving chair, which was hanging on by a thread and not enjoying having to handle the weight of an enormous bird, as it creaked out a protest when she collapsed onto it.

In an even rarer second display of goofiness, Sophie dug out the flask of coffee that she still had. With almost a giggle in her voice, she raised the bottle and asked, “Victory drink, anyone?” After she had had her own fill, of course.

Adrenaline is a hell of a drug.

Users who are viewing this thread