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 Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun

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Ink

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Fri Jun 27, 2014 3:09 am

[Forest Cottage]

Somewhere not terrible far from the cottage, a redheaded woman in a tattered poncho and cowboy hat kneels down at a few footprints in the dirt.  One foot had been dragging, as if sprained.  Not quite enough to be broken, though.  Two scents creep into her nostrils.  The first, the overpowering odor of soot.  But the second, and much less easily detected, the scent of her target.  Both were likely to be in company of one another, so this woman presses on.


Inside the cottage itself, K's nose twitches at the aroma given off by the salve.  Then her ears twitch, followed by a distinct chill running clean up her spine and her eyes popping open.  She rapidly covers her nose and stands up in the bed.

K: MREOW! That is NOT an apple!

What are you, trying to kill me?!

Then her ears droop back down and she falls back into an Indian-Style sitting position on the bed, taking note of the real apple and staring at it, disregarding every other sense but her empty stomach.


[Kantor Outskirts]

Cyan's eyes flash in recognition of the pass code.  She stands up and walks to the boulder, singlehandedly lifting it and slowly setting it down to the side of the cave's mouth.

Cyan: Greetings, Mr. Katsugiya.  It is a pleasure to see you, again.

Sabrina, having been pacing in the cave and trying to think up a plan, pauses and looks to the familiar face standing in the cave entrance.

Sabrina: Hm? Kirei?  I'm not complaining, but you show up at the strangest times!  What are you doing here?


[Forest]

As Mara begins to help the man up, the sound of a twig breaking invades their ears.  Standing behind them is a monster.  A long, slender, wolf-like body with the sharp features of a wild cat and the upright, pointed ears to match, almost like horns.  It has a, extremely long tail and red markings all over its body, with bright yellow eyes.  A Devil-Hound.  It watches quietly, tilting its head at them and flicking its tail about.
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DuskCorruption

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Fri Jun 27, 2014 11:40 pm

[Forest]

Gale being aided by the helpful Mara, begins to stand after hearing her comments about the nearby fire.

Gale: Thanks hun, but it takes more than a fall or two to keep me down. But a nice fire sounds great rig....

Snapping twigs can heard as the two look over it doesn't take night vision to clearly see the monstrous form a dreaded Devil-Hound making it's approach. Gales eyes focus and lock on the creature and complete change of stance from huddled over and being helped to upright and ready for action occurs. A few cracks from Gales joints can be heard. The shock of being this close to danger drags up old memories in a flash.

[Past Battlefield]
BLAM!!!
Gales captain jumps at the sound of his rifle firing, he quickly looks out to the village, nothing but a large over excessive amount of blood can be seen where the dictator stood. The house behind it's wall almost shattered and debris everywhere.
Captain: What the hell did you just do.
Young Gale: What I had to do, he couldn't be allo....
A zuman baby could be heard crying, Gale glanced down his scope to see if someone was in danger. Nothing around the impact site, the dictator was disintegrated. Thats when he saw it, the impact site was the problem, he zoomed in to see, the home behind the dictator, his bullet never stopped, it was too powerful. A tiny zuman baby could be seen crying, lying in it's bundle next to her parents corpses. Torn viscously by the bullet meant to save them. The village gathering around the commotion.
Young Gale: What did I do...


[Current Time Forest]

Gale: This could be a problem. Sweetie why don't you go and find that fire. I'll be right behind you.

Gale's eyes do not move from his target, he figures his slightest movement in retreat will bring a full attack. He motions with his hands when Mara tries to object and finally in a hushed shout.

Gale: Go, and cover your ears... Now!

The Devil-Hound moves the second the woman begins her move, Gale had planned this, he could never pull off a aimed shot in time and even if he did he knew one good shot might not drop this thing. Instead he shifts his lever opening the secondary barrel and fires off a shrieker round. The Forest awakens with a horrible high pitch scream, like glass scratching on a blackboard, the sound is ear shattering at close distances and compared to an air raid siren for those miles around. The Devil-Hound shutters for a second before giving a death stare to Gale. He raises his gun in a defensive position ready for an attack.

Gale: Eh, thought you'd like that one, I know quite a few cat ladies back home who have the same reaction to that.

Gale jokes, it's his way of staying relaxed when faced with greater odds. The creature charges him with it's larger frame, Gale is easily knocked prone. The creature goes for the fatal bite only to have Gales gun lodged lengthwise in it's mouth like a harness bite on a horse. It tries to apply enough force to shatter the gun but cannot, instead it begins to push Gale across the forest floor attempting to break his grip of his own weapon. Gale clings with all his strength knowing releasing is death. branches and bushes knocking into his already bruised back along the way.

Gale thinks to himself, hopefully the girls safe, hopefully she's gotten help, and hopefully they'll hear me. Gale hollers out while being pushed, the woods ever fading while he fights blacking out.

Gale: I'VE GOT... EVERYTHING UNDER... CONTROL BUT ASSISTANCE WOULD BE... GREATLY APPRECIATED!!!
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sat Jun 28, 2014 1:38 pm

[Kantor Outskirts]

Kirei nods to Cyan as she addresses him, then answers Sabrina.

Kirei: You contracted me to bring in the latest shipment of PoF fiber optics as soon as they came in. The delivery came three days in advance of when you had expected, but I was already there.

He casts an eye over their appearances, noting the fading electrical burns covering Sabrina's hands and arms, and the way even Cyan's ramrod-straight posture seems to sag.

Kirei: ...seems like that was a lucky coincidence for us.

The mercenary holds back a smirk as the Zuman boy's stomach growls again.

Kirei: I suppose we should set up camp for the night... and I will cook. The last thing we need is another exploding cereal incident.

Ignoring what will likely be an indignant reply from Sabrina, he muses on his options and his client's current situation.

Kirei: ...if you need my assistance, you need only ask. No charge. I owe you and Cyan that much. Though... who are you, boy?

***

[Forest Cottage]

Aeris can't help but laugh to herself as she hears K's screeching.

Aeris: Kinara, that was an evil and horrible thing to do... I want to hug you. =D

She hears screaming in the woods, but chooses to ignore it in favor of stuffing the deer she's roasting with herbs.

Aeris: Ah well, not my problem. Besides, I can't leave dinner unchecked.

A few minutes of roasting later, the deer is ready to be served.

Aeris: Kinara~! Kitty~! Dinner~!

------------------------------

Yes, I know this was highly uninspired. Considering that Ink's demon dog thing made it impossible for me to go with the humorous post that I was going to make for Aeris, that's kind of justified.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Mon Jun 30, 2014 1:54 am

[Kantor Outskirt]

Lucas's ears perk up and his tail swishes in excitement at the sound of food. His eyes widen with jovial joy.

Lucas: *gasp* cooking would mean food. That would be great Mister!

Looking into the distance through the cave wall, his mind completely blanks on anything but a nice golden roasted turkey with peppered potatoes and bacon strips. Then his ears twitch as Lucas realizes the mysterious man asked him a question. He looks up at the guy.

Lucas: Oh. You mean me. My name is Lucas. Cyan flew me out with Sabrina when the city's barrier when haywire. I'm studying magic so I wanted to try and help.

He tilts his head in a curious matter and does a quick sniff of the air.

Lucas: So what will you cook for us, Mister?


******

[Forest Cottage]

Kinara laughs to herself at the cat girl's screeching. Her ears shift towards Aeris's voice outside.

Kinara *yells* Yea yea. You can hug me after you finish with the food!

She turns her attention back at the hungry cat and tosses the apple slice towards her.

Kinara: Eat up Kiddo. When you can finish the apple the rest of dinner will probably be done.

Kinara moves the rest of the apple closer. The fox girl leans back while watching her company satisfy their hunger.

Her ears pick up on a fire cracker gun shot from the distance causing her to cringe tightly with her hands on the sides of her head. Ears ringing and in immense pain, Kinara creates a growling howl mixed with half a yelp.

Kinara: Under Fennec's sun!

Nearly falling out of her seat, she shakes her head to try to regain some sense. Aeris can be heard merrily calling the girls for food. Kinara halfway stumbles to the door, regaining composure with every other step. Outside she sees the sylph with the cooked dear, smiling away.

Kinara: Are you just going to ignore whatever's going on in these woods?! That gun shot was close by and I can still hear screaming. Someone is in trouble!

The huntress is met with a dumbfounded look, returned with a deep growl and a knocked over plate.

Kinara: How did you not hear that gun shot? My ears are still ringing like church bells!

Kinara growls furiously.



[Forest]

Mara switches gaze from the man to the monster.

Mara: Sir, what are you---?

The man yells at her. She tries to back away quickly but after a moment finds her body against the cliff. She crouches and covers her ears while looking away. She flinches at the gun shot from the man and shudders at the Devil-Hound's menacing attack barks.

Mara sidles quickly along the cliff. The creature turns a new course as the man braces its mouth with his gun. Mara dodges the creature's directional change but its tail swings back around. It lands right into Mara's stomach and knocks out the wind. She stumbles side stepping til she comes across a rock and fells to one knee.

The devil hound drags the man up the incline through shrubbery. It's direction is sort of towards the fire's light. Mara isn't sure; still trying to make sure she was breathing. She watches with one hand to her stomach and the other bracing her weight on the ground.

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Mon Jun 30, 2014 2:06 am

[Forest]

The Devil-Hound stands there, passively staring as Gale wrestles a rock.  The monster casually walks over in front of Gale and taps him on the head with its tail, looking down at him with a wrap-around grin down its snout.

Nebu: Are you enjoying yourself, human?

The hound's mouth never moves, but it stares directly into Gale's eyes and no one else is around.  Then it sits.  

Nebu: I apologize for intruding your mind the way I did, but it is quite clear you were panicked.  So I allowed you to believe what you wanted to believe for a bit.  I hope you aren't too upset.  This young lady and I had a wonderful talk while you were...putting on your little show.

The hound stands on all four legs again, lowering its head as if to bow.

Nebu: I am Nebu. A pleasure to make your acquaintance.  Both of you.  Would you like an escort through these woods.  The Red Forest can be a very dangerous place.


[Kantor Outskirts]

Sabrina: I don't know WHAT you're talking about.

Cyan: Would you like me to playback my recording on the events on that day, madam?

Sabrina switches from her head being held high and proudly to a slumped sigh and adjusting her glasses.

Sabrina: No, Cyan, that won't be necessary.  Thank you.


[Forest Cottage]

Before Aeris can finish speaking, K is primed and waiting for whatever the delightful smell was that so danced through her nose.  One of her tiny little fangs pokes out of her mouth as she stares at the food before her, entranced.  It's all K can do to keep herself from bouncing as her eyes, wide as saucers, twinkle and her mouth waters.

K: Haven't. Eaten. Must. Consume. Smells so good.

As K is about to take a bit, suddenly the sound of a gunshot blows through the air, practically punching K in the face.  She doubles over, falling out of her seat and covering her sensitive ears, shrieking with her tail pointing straight up in the air.

K: Nyeeeeeh! Loud! Loud! Too loud!
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Mon Jun 30, 2014 2:57 am

- You idiot!! Must I do everything for you pathetic human. -

- ...there talking, something about a poet, and food I think... so stupid these ones... I hate this world so much. -

- Keep at it a bit longer, make it look real, I don't want that Runt figuring it out. -

- Ok, thats enough, you looked stupid enough to pass as a moron. -

- And whatever you do don't talk to me around that thing, it may catch on. -

- Remember, a thousand lies and a good disguise keeps everyone alive and happy. Now Sell It!!! -


Aphrodite stops talking, releasing control of Gales mind. Like a horrible tide tearing away at a shore it has receded but left it's marks.

[Forest]

Gale lays on the ground gritting his teeth and holding on for dear life against the most viscous rock you've ever met. The demon-hound Nebu and Mara sit side by side talking with fascinated stares in his direction. Gale struggles a bit more to sell it, Nebu approaches and taps Gale on the head with his tail.

In Gales Head: "whew, that was getting humiliating, time to turn this around."

Gale sits up, pointing at Nebu, the rock, and himself in confusion.

Gale: What the what, you me, a ROCK!!! I lost to a ROCK!

Gale checks his gun and looks towards Nebu then Mara.

Gale: Oh man, I did fire that didn't I, I hope your ok friend... Trust me it's not something I like to bring out on the first date unless necessary... Sugar (Mara) your ears ok?

Nebu stares strangely at Gale, almost like he just noticed something.

- Stop him, he's catching on, punch him, or at least move! Don't sit still, change the conversation. Move Damnit!!! -

Gale leaps to his feat, picking up his rifle and adjusting the glasses that for not being attached by any means have held pretty well to his face. He looks around getting a full view of his situation and looks back at the others. Like a snap of his fingers Gales whole personality and stance changes from confusion to elegance. A small bow towards Nebu.

Gale: Nebu sir, I think we would be most appreciative for any assistance you can grant with these woods, and maybe explain again how I lost to a rock... Oh, honey pie (Mara), I almost forgot to mention why I came into these interesting woods. Your brothers are fine, one is injured at the next town over and they sent me to find you.

Gale sweats a little fearing Nebu being so close and still watching him intently, he moves a few steps towards the woman.

Gale: By the by, names Gale and it's an honor meeting both your acquaintances.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sun Jul 06, 2014 6:38 pm

[Forest Cottage]

Aeris just stares blankly into the place that a plate had appeared out of thin air seconds before.

Aeris (thinking): I definitely didn't bring any plates out here. And she didn't bring one with her.

Aeris: Kinara? Since when do you have a magic plate? ...because I want one.

She then blinks in surprise at K falling over and grabbing at her ears despite the fact that the shrieking of the gunshot happened thirty seconds previously.

Aeris: ...Kitty, I worry about you. And that's saying something.

She picks up the magic plate, deciding not to look a gift horse in the mouth, and starts dishing out the deer.

Aeris: By the way, Kinara dear. The reason I didn't go and help those people is because little Nebu is already there. And seeing as he's something of a ranger, I can leave it up to him. They'll be here sooner or later.

She holds up a plate to both of them. Despite the fact that there had clearly only been one magic plate seconds before.

Aeris: Food?

***

[Kantor Outskirts]

Kirei holds in the chuckles he wants to emit when Cyan embarrasses Sabrina.

Kirei (inner monologue): Somebody give that robot-girl a hug. Or a medal. Or both.

Giving his inner voice the mental equivalent of a roundhouse kick to the face, Kirei focuses on Lucas' question.

Kirei: I'll see if I can't find a boar or something. I can make a decent pork roast.

He thinks of possibly hunting one down using his scopes on his rifle, but thinks better of it when he sees the boy's eagerness.

Kirei: Want to help me find one, kid? That'll give Sabrina and Cyan a chance to set up camp and plan our next move.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Tue Jul 08, 2014 6:19 pm

[Forest Cottage]

Kinara continues a low growl under her breath. A nice totally not normal plate of food is lifted toward.

Kinara: You and your weird obsession with ceramics...

Kinara grabs the dish and sits cross legged on the ground, ears shifting slightly to catch the sounds of the forest.

Kinara: Nebu? Well, I wish you mentioned he was in the area sooner.

She rips off with her teeth deer flesh from her plate, chewing deep in thought. After a moment, Kinara spits to the side a piece of fat.

Kinara (mumbling to herself): Darn it. Should've helped those suckers with the gun. Could've made a profit off of them as reward for the assistance. Next time.

Kinara finishes her plate of meat, slightly less vexed, and allows Aeris to give her seconds.



[Red Forest]

Mara's stomach and chest still feel sore from running into the cliff during the confusion with Nebu. Could she have been a klutz at a worse time? Probably. She was about to ask Nebu if he knew a good alchemical potion to snap her male acquaintance out of his limestone charade. However, the man recovered quick enough. He introduced himself, finally.

Mara (thinking): Di... did he just call me "Honey Pie"?! My ears are still ringing but I didn't just hear that did I?

Mara's irk simmered down when Gale mentioned her brothers.

Mara: So they are okay? *sigh* That's great. I'm pleased. Oh. My name is Mara.

Mara (thinking): I wonder why my brothers sent this guy to me. Normally they'd know better than to point such a ... bold man my direction. Must've been the circumstance. At least they're okay. I'll have to meet up with them soon.

Nearly forgetting, Mara turns her attention back to the nice devil-hound. She does a half curtsey.

Mara: Mister Nebu, it would be wonderful for your escort services. I'm not exactly sure what my current destination is but I know I don't have a gun or much of a knife to defend myself against the greater dangers of the forest. A shelter where we could get some food would be real nice if you don't mind. We'll have to continue our discussion on forest amenities along the way.



[Kantor Outskirts]

Lucas: What? Me hunt with you?

He looks back at the scientist and android. Sabrina was deep in thought and Cyan stood there observing. Lucas then looks back at the guy.

Lucas: What would you want me to do? Track one down?

It was years since his father took him on a hunting trip, but he definitely wouldn't mind helping. It meant either food in his stomach sooner, or a mental distraction from the hunger.

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Tue Jul 08, 2014 7:08 pm

[Red Forest, Forest Cottage]

Nebu: Oh, please, dear girl.  Simply Nebu is fine.  We can talk further once we arrive.  I imagine it will be difficult for you to hold conversation on the way.  And now that all is settled, let us be off.

Nebu's tails whips to one side behind him, like a person waving a wand.  The tip glows and, suddenly, both Mara and Gale are raised ever so slightly from the ground.  Nebu, himself, floats in place for a moment.

Nebu: Shall we take the express?  Worry not.  I have you both.

Then the devil-hound floats forward at an impressive pace, bringing Mara and Gale along for the ride through the forest.  He maneuvers them all around trees and over bushes as they near the cottage in the distance.

Meanwhile, K is devouring yet another deer thigh.  She'd polished the bone in record time, almost like a piranha frenzy.  She pauses when her ears twitch.  She sniffs the air and drops the nearly bare bone from between her little fangs.

K: Huh? I smell the  gunpowder now.  They must be getting close.

Nebu: Indeed we are.

Nebu arrives with the other two in two, landing beside the fire and setting Mara down gently, rather sloppily dropping Gale.  He bows his head to Aeris and Kinara.

Nebu: Huntresses.  A pleasure to see you.  Pardon the intrusion.  These two were wandering about in the Red Forest, by themselves.  I figured such a thing would be dangerous.  May I introduce Lady Mara and Gale.

K, having been staring in awe, blinks.

Nebu: Hm? And who might you be?

K: You're a...talking monster.

Nebu: Hm? I am Nebu. And yes, I do speak...but is that so surprising?  You are a talking monster, are you not, Zuman?

K huffs, crossing her arms and glaring off to the side.

K: Yeah, well...


[Kantor Outskirts]

Sabrina: Go on, kid.  He'll watch out for ya.  He's one'o the best!  You'll be in good hands.  Cyan, you and I will stick around and set up a fire.  This cave is all the shelter we need.

Cyan: Of course, Professor.

Cyan raises her hand and it suddenly morphs into a mortar nearly the size of the android's entire body.  Sabrina adjusts her glasses with a smirk.

Sabrina: It'll be a cinch.  Go have fun!


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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Wed Jul 09, 2014 10:36 pm

[Forest]

The sensation of flight, levitating feet from the ground at a speed known to few animals, Gale feels uncomfortable but joy overflows his system. He can tell when Aphrodite is enjoying something, the weightless flight across the ground has brought about a state of elation in her, providing a quiet calm between the two that hasn't occurred for days.

[Cottage]

*Gale rolls across the ground from the sloppy landing, he has enough insight to not roll into the fire so he curves his destination slightly, making sure to do it in the most grandiose, amazing looking way. Looking up from his position his eyes meet a stern gaze from a Sylph, taking a moment to enjoy his positioning looking straight up at her enjoying every curve.

Aphrodite sends a jolt through his head.

- Crazy eyes Gale, think twice with this one. I can't get a read on her... could possibly kill you for no reason. -

Gale in his head: Has that ever stopped me before?

*Gale jumps to his feet and looks at the Sylph, but then realizes more eyes on him. He looks over seeing the mature Fox (Kinara). his eyes light up a bit, a half curved smile twinges on his face.

- Calm down boy... she's a thrill seeker. Also she is very quick to hurt you, same with the last one, don't say anything stupid... maybe compliment her ears or sash. -

“Yeah, well...” K mutters

*Gale’s attention from the Fox has been broken, his eyes rest on the final member of the trio, the Cat. Like a jolt in his head a powerful memory flashes before his eyes. He quickly regains composition and notices a look on the entire parties face gazing oddly at him, from fear of looking awkward opens his mouth to speak.

Gale: Greetings, I don’t know really whats going on, I seem to be all over the place this night but I can say right now, there is no place I rather be than right here. I may need to wonder dark woods more often and find friendly demon hounds, they seem to know where all the beauties of the lands are hiding. *wink *wink

Gale in his head: (high pitched) Nailed it.

Aphrodite sends a panicked message

- You’re on fire... -


Gale in his head: I know, I couldn’t have said that any bett...

- No, you’re seriously on fire! You’re too close to the fire dumb#@$. -

During Gales whole conversation and gazings from fellow members a small ember from the fire he so gracefully rolled past landed on his overcoat, working it’s way from a small burn, to small corner of flame, to the entire bottom part of Gales heavy overcoat.

*Gale tries to hold composition as the heat has finally registered... like a spooked Chihuahua he suddenly turns and takes off away from the campsite into the darkness, as if expecting to outrun the flame... Within moments the party witnesses the fire path move left and right until finally falling to the ground and rolling repeatedly.

*chirp *chirp The silence of the night is unbareble to Gale.

*Finally working up the courage to return to the campsite, smoke rising from the bottom half of his coat.

Gale: “ummm... I believe Angel eyes (Mara) here may have something to say and we should all just focus on her and forget everything that has just occurred... orrrrrrrrr someone else could talk that would work, yes, yes it would.”

- Ever so graceful after an accident aren’t you... I don’t know why I put up with you... -
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Thu Jul 17, 2014 8:55 pm

[Forest Cottage]

Aeris (thinking): Oookay... yep. He's definitely looking up my dress. Flattering in its own way, but I'm still going to murder him for it. If he wants to look up my dress, he has to have my permission first!

And then Gale rolled over a burning ember, making his coat catch fire.

Aeris (thinking): ...permission he will never receive now. Who in their right mind would create a character so prone to failure? Granted, I'm not exactly the best judge of sanity... Actually, thank you, creator-of-failure-guy. Now I can enjoy myself immensely at his expense, and murder him for look up my dress at the same time! It's perfect!

With that... pleasant thought in mind, she waves her hand as he is distracted, feeding air to the fire that rapidly spreads up his coat. She savors the dismayed expression on his face before he takes off into the woods, then chuckles under her breath at his yelps of pain and the sounds of him rolling back and forth.

Aeris: Ahh, what a lovely distraction. Failure-prone characters are just such fun to toy with. Thank you kindly, Dusk.

Ignoring the weird looks from the others, she simply sits back and enjoys the expression on the failure knight's face as he walks back into camp.

***

[Kantor Outskirts]

Kirei valiantly holds his straight face as he nods, then leads Lucas away from the camp.

Kirei (thinking): This will not end well. At all. I suppose I had better find new shelter as well, seeing as this one will be a pile of rubble. Maybe we could build a hut out of the debris?

And the two hunters walked off into the night, ignoring the loud explosions that echoed behind them.

----------------------

Sigh... not happy with this. But considering how unwell and stressed I've been, I'm not surprised. Sorry I'm holding up the RP so much, guys.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Wed Jul 23, 2014 3:07 am

[Red Forest: Outside Cottage]

Kinara growls under her breath at the look she's given by the strange man Nebu kindly dropped at hers and Aeris's feet. A single ear twitching in annoyance, Kinara turns her attention to the devil hound.

Kinara: Hey Nebu. How's it going this last month or so? What's with the clown? Does he not know that in the Red Forest that shade of green is going to get him in trouble?

Kinara shakes her head, no use ruining her evening. Then glances at Nebu and the girl.

Kinara: Might as well join us. Aeris prepared plenty of deer.

The human and the fox lock eyes, completely ignoring the early ramblings of the green haired clown.

Mara: Oh, it's you. The fox girl from market. Miss Kinara.

Kinara half chokes on her last bite of deer, punching her chest slightly to recover. Mara giggles softly.

Mara: I'm so sorry. I just recognized you is all. I'm Mara again. Here. I have some seasoning I keep i my travel bag, it's supposed to go nicely with deer meat.

Mara grabs a small bottle from her side pocket of her bag. She sprinkles a bit of the powder on everyone's serving. She stops when she gets to the cat.

Mara: Oh it's you again. *then smiles brightly* Well you'll enjoy this spice I know. It's the same one I used on the chicken when you visited for dinner the other night.

Suddenly, the girls turn their attention to the large flame coming off the coat of the not-so-savvy man. They give the giggling sylph questioning looks as Gale dashes into the woods being eaten by the flame so to speak.

Gale returns to the campsite. Mara's angel eyes turn into cold daggers st her too familiar nickname as she makes a fist with one hand. Kinara shakes her head and turns to the sadistic sylph.

Kinara: Well, Aeris, you really do never change. I never thought I'd see a man run away from fire like that.

The phrase strikes a chord with Mara who receives a few quick flashes of memory from the inferno.

Mara: Running away...from a fire...

Mara, looking down, holds herself as a jolt of fear runs through her body.

Mara: *whispers* Hasteriver....

Kinara: Fennec's Sun. That's right. You lived over there. And that was the direction *motions to K* the cat came from too. That massive fire. What happened?

Mara: Well, I don't know exactly. I woke up in the night to find the whole place set ablaze. I ran out, escaping the flames from Hasteriver's center.

Kinara: Huh. So why's the clown with you?

Mara: I got separated from my brothers on the way out. That's why Gale found me, my brothers sent him to tell me they're okay as they go to treat the one's injuries. There was so much flame. So unnatural. The town's completely destroyed.

Kinara leans forward, hand on her chin. She then takes another large bite of seasoned deer as she watches Mara calm herself down.

Kinara: So then what really happened? And what's next?

[Kantor Outskirts]

Lucas suddenly felt safer going with this new man out into the wilderness with whichever dangers possible then in the quaint little cave. He followed Kirei very closely when exiting the cave.

After some time passed, the hunters return to what appears to still be the cave. They find Sabrina contemplating something with Cyan standing in half the pile of rubble. There is not much room to bring the young boar's corpse the men brought back from the hunt.

Sabrina and Kirei start some half-argument over the mess. At a loss, Lucas drops the meat and rushes over to a few trees directly nearby. He climbs up and breaks a few branches. Carrying them over, while the adults continue the discussion, Lucas positions the sticks in a pile. He then flicks his tail in thought.

Lucas: Now what was that spell again?

Lucas thinks for another moment his eyes light up. He raises his arms, aiming for the pile.

Luca: Papiro pyro konapo.

The pile of sticks make a quick spark then erupt into a small blaze. The small fox grabs an extra stick and stabs it into the earlier kill. After a few minutes, Lucas happily gnaws on a boar leg. Then he bounces his red ball he's kept in his coat pocket against a large rock at the cave entrance while the adults figure out the plans. Lucas catches his ball and returns it to his pocket when he sees his party exiting the cave. Overly excited for something new and a bathroom Lucas scurries up onto Cyan's shoulders like a squirrel.

Lucas: So where are we going next?!

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Thu Jul 24, 2014 1:49 am

[Red Forest]

Nebu: I am well, my huntress friend.

Nebu looks to an unclaimed ration of the meat and it levitates over in front of him.  He then lies down in the grass and begins to eat.

K looks up and blinks as Mara speaks to her.  Her nose twitches when the spice hits her food.  When Mara's hand is far enough away, K opens her mouth wide and chomps down, squealing in delight as she savors the taste.

Yyyyyyuuum! Ah! Tasty! Delicious! Sublime! Other words I didn't know I knew, too!  Where has this BEEN all my life?!

K: I'm gonna call you Spice from now on, lady.

K ignores the episode of Gale making a fool of himself, holding the clean bone of the deer leg in her mouth and swaying side-to-side with rosy red cheeks.  Her ears twitch when she hears mention of Hasteriver.  She freezes up and the delight washes away from her face.  Then she pulls the bone out from her teeth and leaves it on her plate.

Nebu: Hm.  This one seems to have lost her appetite.  I believe she has something she'd like to say.

K: Mel.

She sets the plate down in front of her and crosses her arms.

K: Her name was Mel.  She's the one that burned Hasteriver to the ground.

Nebu: One person did this? I find that difficult to believe.

K: I saw her.  She used the same fire magic to kill the mayor.  She saw me watching, but I guess she figured I was already as good as dead, so she left.  It was so fast.  Like there wasn't even a cast time.  One second, no fire.  The next second, fire everywhere.

K tilts her head up and watches the embers from the cooking fire float up into the air and disappear.

K: Oh, wait!

K's ears stand straight up and she rushes back into the cottage, returning with the map and Mel's journal.

K: I first ran into Mel after I had dinner at Spice's!  Aaaand she dropped this stuff!

K flips through the pages of the journal.  Some of them she still can't read, but the ones from before come across loud and clear.

K: It's a list of towns!  And, right here!  It says she's looking for the Sun of Lore!

Nebu: That's a morbid thought. A pyromaniac and potential mass murderer getting her hands on a legendary Norn Item said to have the power to grant wishes to whoever touches it?

K spreads out the map on the ground.

K: Now lookit!  The first village on this list is...um...

Nebu: ...*telepathically* It's pronounced 'Rawling'.

K: RAWLING!  Map, show the way to Rawling!

As K holds the map open, its blank face begins to change, as if ink is being spread along the surface.  It gives form to the shape of a true map, beginning with the current location and marking a route to the village in red.

K: Haha! See?! How cool is that?! Mreow!

Then she pauses and allows herself to calm down for a moment before becoming even more stoked.

K: I'm gonna use it to find Mel and make her pay!

K pauses for a beat and blinks inquisitively, then rushes Mara and wraps around her arm.

K: You should come too, Spice! It was your home too! And we survived it once, so who's to say we can't bring her down?

Nebu: That logic does not even begin to make sense.  You said, yourself, that this woman didn't even attempt to kill you, directly.  What do you think will happen if she does?

K cuts a glare at Nebu.

K: *mumbles* Nobody asked you, pooch.

She looks up at Mara.

K: C'mon, c'mon! We'll use her stuff to catch her by surprise and then we'll make her sorry!

Nebu: That is more logical, but be honest.  You just like Lady Mara's cooking. That's clearly what you're thinking.

K: STAY OUTTA MY HEAD, FIDO!

Nebu smiles contently and looks to the ladies.

Nebu: *Telepathically* I've a feeling we won't be talking her down.  If she goes on this quest of hers, she's liable to get herself killed.  And get Lady Mara killed in the process.  Though I don't doubt you can defend yourself, Lady Mara, this 'Mel' character does have me quite worried.  If what the child has to say is true, then...well.  Perhaps between the lot of us, we can reach the next town and stop her together.  Far less dangerous, that way.  Mind you, if we were to go anywhere, then I'm sure the incompetent one *nods toward Gale* would follow.  They are often times the most difficult to be rid of.

---

[The Outskirts]

Sabrina adjusts her glasses.

Sabrina: What I need to do is find the Sun of Lore.  I'm sure it exists.  All of my evidence is sealed up in my lab, but it's out there.  And to find something like that, we'll be needing someone with a very specific set of skills.

Cyan: For this reason, the Professor and Master Katsugiya have suggested we begin by visiting Agrabah to the west.  It is a known haven of treasure hunters who stop there to refresh themselves or set up shop to sell valuable findings.

Sabrina: Right.  We'll head there and find us a treasure hunter.

Cyan's lower legs open into rocket form and her flight harness spawns from her back.

Cyan: Traveling in Flight Mode, the Estimated Time of Arrival is-

Sabrina places her hand on Cyan's shoulder.

Sabrina: *whispers* Cyan, don't tell him.

Cyan: Yes, professor.

Cyan takes Sabrina and Kirei each into one arm, then rockets off.  In a matter of hours, she slows to a mild hover and lets her passengers down, gently.

Cyan: Destination reached.

Sabrina stretched and cracks her neck as Cyan releases them all.  Agrabah is a rough and tumble little town, filled to the brim with big, burly men who fancy themselves treasure hunters, mercenaries, and other such things.

Sabrina enters the town just ahead of the others, her hands in her lab coat pockets.

Sabrina: All right.  Where should we start looking?

Cyan: Professor, it is advisable that we first seek out food and shelter for the evening.

Sabrina: Right.  So the local saloon?
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:43 pm

[Red Forest]

Gale listened intently to the conversation while half leaned on his rifle by the fire, hunger growled at him but his curiosity was greater.

Nebu: That's a morbid thought. A pyromaniac and potential mass murderer getting her hands on a legendary Norn Item said to have the power to grant wishes to whoever touches it?

Aphrodite (inside Gales head): wishes... a body of my own...

The others continue talking, Gale tries to maintain his calm, but he feels his body heating up. Sweat begins to appear on his forehead, he releases his gun allowing it to fall to the ground... he sees the others look at him as he bends down to retrieve it. He feels his hands spasm, his whole body is shaking, the pain can be felt. With one hand grasping the gun his other moves on its own. Grabbing his glasses. It begins to pull them away, the force of the strange magnetism is strong but not enough. Gale grabs his hand with his other, trying to force the glasses back on, but his strength fades fast.

The others seem to have stopped speaking serious for a brief moment and continue with normal chitchat over their respective dinners.

Kinara: I think the Clown hurt himself getting his gun. (motioning to Gale still bent over)

Aeirs: Maybe he’s burnt more than I thought. (A demented smile creeps across her face)

Mara giggles slightly as K goes from map to food in an excitable fashion. Nebu perks up suddenly turning his attention towards Gale, his eyes focusing at his glasses being held in his other trembling hand.

???: AAHHHAHAHAHOOOOHOHOHHAHAH!

The voice is female and hideous, like a snake growling and laughing wildly at the same time. Almost as if 3 varied levels of the same voice all saying the same thing but each is off by just enough to cause a strange echoing throughout the woods.

Gale stands, dropping the glasses in the grass. His face still half concealed by the shadow of his arched stance. Suddenly he thrusts his face up to greet the others. Cracks across his face can be seen starting from his right eye and covering much ground. Blood can be seen slowly dripping but beneath the cracks is a porcelain white polish. Like a glass surface pushing it’s way through Gales face.

Aphrodite: So wise one, tell me more of this treasure little one is so eager to retrieve. I would be most interested in having a chance to make a few wishes come true.

Gale takes a step towards K and her map, but suddenly retracts, a hand begins to raise but is thrown back down with a strong energy that causes the fire to flare for a moment.

Aphrodite: No, this is my time! Back off! (she seems to be screaming at herself)

Gales body looks back towards the group. Realizing the glares. Gale stands straight, adjusting his stance to be more professional.

Aphrodite: Lets start over shall we, I feel we got off on the wrong foot... Let me explain something. Every time you speak, every time you talk behind Gales back and even when you do that thing that causes the world to pause (breaking 4th wall) I am listening. I wish to know more of this Norn you speak of. And in order to keep him (points at her / himself) off my back he asks I be more civil... (awkward silence) Now, can’t we talk like friends who simply want to help each other out and not like people just using each other to achieve hidden agendas... (more awkward silence, a creepy smile crosses Gales face, causing it to crack at the edges and extend.) That was a joke you idiots...
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sat Jul 26, 2014 8:19 pm

[Agrabah]

Hm... Agrabah. It's been too long, Kirei mused as he inhaled scent of the town. Dust and grease seemed to constantly permeate the air in Agrabah, mainly due to its mercenary inhabitants and windblown prairie environment. Rough and tumble it might have been, but it had its charm, and plenty of decent inhabitants. As a hub town for mercenaries and treasure hunters, as well as roughnecks, there were plenty of folks eking out a living catering to these people or providing services to the ones who did the catering, much like his contact.

Kishiou... No. It's best if I take the three of them to the saloon first. That decision in mind, Kirei steps up to the head of the group. "This way, Professor. And stay behind me. The locals can be quite rowdy, even for this kind of town."

As though to prove his point, once they reached the saloon, a man was forcefully ejected through the front doors with a yell and flew past them, smashing into the curb face-first and lying unconscious. Kirei, ever the professional, ignored the commotion and walked inside, bringing the group to an empty table and flagging down the waiter for drinks.

"Bathroom's on your left and towards the back, Lucas," he told the pup, then grabbed a roll from the conveniently placed bread basket on the table.

***

[Forest Cottage]

Aeris didn't quite know what to make of the situation at first. Sure, the cracking of the idiot's face looked fairly horrific, but the voice was even more distracting, the triple-tones being enough to make her ears ring.

Then she realizes what is happening as the voice begins seemingly screaming at its owner, and memories snap to the forefront of her mind.

...helpless, trapped in her own skin as blood splashed on the ground...

...shouts of rage that seemed alien coming from her own throat...

...screaming in her mind, tears left unshed as she killed, and killed, and killed again...

Monster!


Her hand clenches into a fist as she grabs her sword from its position embedded by her leg, and she marches forward as the thing in Gale's body stops speaking, grabbing the body by the collar and lifting it off the ground.

"You... are a complete fool," she said, her voice deathly quiet. The usual faraway mist in her eyes is gone, replaced by razor-sharp steel. "You could just as easily have stayed inside his mind, feeding him questions to ask us, instead of tipping your hand and pissing me off. I would be doing the fool a favor if I were to kill him now, rather than letting you subject him to whatever horrors you have in store."

She then shoved Gale's body backward, dropping it on the ground with a muted thump. "I won't, yet. You haven't done anything to earn it other than being overly creepy. Keep yourself in check, and then I won't have to."

Aeris stalked back over to her stump, sitting down and slamming her sword halfway through the tree behind her, so no one but her could remove it. "Now then..." She leaned back, eyes glazing over in thought. "From what I remember, the Sun of Lore is one of the most sought-after Norn artifacts, and as Nebu said, it is reputed to grant any wish of the person who lays a hand on it. It's an artifact from the original civilization of Vangelon, Lore, created by its three most powerful and respected scholars. I don't remember much of the myth behind it, but I do know that it was supposedly lost forever when the city of Norinn was destroyed, and that the city's destruction was what scattered the Norn artifacts across the world."

She sighed. "Frankly, while I believe the Sun of Lore exists, I don't think it's everything that it's cracked up to be. Magic is based on the concept of equivalent exchange, after all. An artifact that can subvert that shouldn't even by possible by the rules that govern its existence. It probably has some massive defect or drawback, like that your wish has to be extremely specific, or it'll do things you don't want it to. Or that it will simply take the life of whoever uses it as payment for the wish." She leaned back, staring up at the starry night sky. "After all... if there's one thing that my long life has taught me, it's that nothing good ever comes without sacrifice."

After a few moments of silent contemplation, she turns a happy smile with a slight sneering edge on the thing in Gale's body. "So, who wants seconds on the deer?" The message of her expression, however, was quite clear.

You are not the biggest predator here.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sun Jul 27, 2014 12:40 am

[Agrabah]

Lucas: The rusty grease and dust at least distract me well enough...

Lucas follows closely to the adults as they enter the not so silky saloon, not particularly comfortable walking again after such a flight. Kirei leads the group over to an empty table and motions to the restrooms. Lucas's face lit up and his ears stood up.

Lucas: Really?! Be right back!!

Through the whole saloon, many faces turned into confused looks as a small grey blur raced by them, in particularly bumping past one waiter with a bread basket in tow.

Coming into the bathroom, Lucas passed a reasonably larger-than-most-large-men bear Zuman. He snorted grouchily at the fox boy, a mere fraction of fur mass, let alone height. Lucas immediately lowered his ears and hugged the wall when he realized the bear had to avoid stepping on his bushy tail.

Zuman: Pipsqueak, stay outta mah way.

Lucas: *gulps* Y-yes sir.

Lucas returns to rushing towards the best location: that which to relieve himself. After a few minutes of natural bliss, Lucas makes his way back to the table and grabs one of the breads to munch on before the real meal comes.


[Red Forest: Cottage]

Mara: Um...well, I don't have too much of a problem coming with you dear. Although I do need to stop at the town my brothers are at to let them know I'm okay first. Otherwise, I could come.

Kinara: I think the Clown hurt himself getting his gun. (motioning to Gale still bent over) Too broken to enjoy this nice hunted dinner.

Kinara growls in pain at Aphrodite's insane high pitched cackle.

Kinara: Great, another new character coming into the party.

Kinara's ear twitches as she listens to Aeris's threat to the new conscious in Gale's body.

Kinara (thinking): Not positive what's going on, but in regular strategy terms, I kinda agree with Aeris here.

Mara continues to remain in quiet shock, like a normal human being. However, Mara is very happy for the minor self distraction from the second weirdest event she's witnessed in the last day. A fierce pain shoots up through her nerves about her elbow. She looks down at K.

Mara: Um dear, could you please get your claws out of my arm. I feel skin piercing.

Kinara's eyes dart across the entire scene while keeping her ears towards everyone. Each company member. The deer dinner. The glasses on the ground. Aeris's sword in the tree. The glasses on the ground.

Aeris tells of her knowledge of the Sun of Lore. Mara looks up again for this. A norn item that grants wishes?

Mara: *under her breath*a new restaurant, or house in general would be nice.

The huntress softly snorts to herself. She gets up nonchalantly and walks over towards the grass patch. Acting like playing campfire guard, the fox picks up the spectacles and hides them in her cloak. She watches the others continue eating for a few minutes.

Kinara: *thinking* Nebu, just in case, back up please.

Kinara then does a jump flip to land on Gale's shoulders, or his body's shoulders anyway, and puts the goggles back on his noggin.

Kinara: Heads up.

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sun Jul 27, 2014 3:32 am

[Agrabah]

Sabrina follows Kirei to the table and takes a seat.  As Lucas bolts through the saloon and bumps the young waiter, said waiter begins to tip over, catching all of the drinks on his tray and the break basket by the handle with his teeth.  Cyan stands over him with a tilted head and he rights himself, setting the drinks down on the table.

Waiter: Sorry about that. My name is Axel. Can I get you anything?

Man: Hey, waiter! Where's that bread?!

Axel: Eh? Oh, right. Just one moment.

Axel quickly rushes to the table across the room, setting down the basket of soft, warm bread.  One of the men picks up a breadstick and bites down on it, then stops in the middle of what he's doing. He grabs his drink and splashes Axel in the face with it.

Brute: It's stale, pretty boy.

Axel: That...is unfortunate, sir. I-

Sabrina: Don't even think about apologizing.

Sabrina gets up from her seat and approaches the table.

Sabrina: These meatheads aren't worth the time.

The big guy stands from his seat and looms over Sabrina.

Brute: Well, lookitchu.  Too bad y' aren't as smart as you dress, lady.  Unless you wanna get roughed up, right along with him, I suggest you go sit down.

Sabrina adjusts her glasses.

Sabrina: Ah. There's the threat. Cyan?

Sabrina steps to the side and behind her is Cyan, eyes glowing red.  Suddenly weapons burst out from all over Cyan's petite frame and she turns every single one on the brutes at the table.

Cyan: You have threatened the Professor. I advise evacuation within the next ten seconds.

As the weapons begin to charge, the horde of men gets up from the table and rushes from the saloon, tripping up and falling over one another on the way out.  Once they're gone, Cyan retracts her arsenal and turns to Axel.

Sabrina: Are you all right?

Cyan: I do hope that I did not startle you.

Axel: You kidding? That was...Impressive. Whatever you're getting, it's on the house.

Sabrina: Happy to help.

Sabrina sits back down and Cyan walks up behind her, standing over the table with her hands formally folded in front of her.  Sitting at the bar is a bug Zuman of some sort.  Given his horns, perhaps Beetle.  He looks over his shoulder as that scene unfolds behind him.  When it's over and the idiots have fled, he gets up and leaves the saloon after eying the Professor and her group for a moment.


[Cottage]

Nebu guides Kinara's hand and locks Gale's body in place, both using his TK abilities.  When all is said and done, and Gale has reverted to "normal", he sits back down.

Nebu: Well, that wasn't as amusing as I'd hoped.

K: Spice! You 'n' me can head out whenever you wanna go!

Nebu: Do you know where you're going?

K slowly turns her head, glaring at the devil hound.

Nebu: The next town from where Hasteriver was is a spot called Efreet.  That's where Mara's brothers will be. We can be there within the day.

K: We?

Nebu: Dear child, not only are you liable to get yourself roasted alive without additional aid, but you possess a map that can guide you to the most valuable object on the planet.  Surely you didn't expect any of this colorful group to merely see you off with waves and smiles?

K: That witch ain't gonna kill me!  I'll slice her face up so bad, her momma won't recognize her! I don't need any help!

Nebu: Oh? Not even Lady Mara's cooking?

K: That's different, ya mutt!

Nebu chuckles.

Nebu: Amusing.  I would recommend that those of us that aren't nocturnal get a fair share of rest.  Those of us that are can stay up and keep watch.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sun Jul 27, 2014 8:35 pm

[Red Forest Cottage]

Kinara: Heads up.

Aphrodite begins to feel her body slow. Rough to move, to react. She realizes they are attempting to place the glasses on her face. She doesn’t resist, she lets them do what they wish. Before they accomplish the transition she retreats to the inner sanctum of their shared minds.

[Inner Mind]

Gale sits on her black spired throne she built as a testament of herself. He watches in amusement through the various windows that show what is happening while stuck in this chamber. He stands slowly with a chuckle.

Gale (Inner mind): Didn’t make many friends I noticed?

Aphrodite (Inner mind): I was charming in the end as you asked, now out of my chair. *She moves over to him* Should be a matter of seconds before you get full control again. *she holds out her hand, as if an invitation of some kind* Shall we before you go?

Gale (Im): If it pleases you, but I get to lead this time.

Gale places his right hand just under her shoulder blade, and his left presses lightly against her right. They take off across the black marbled floors she chose for this place. Everything starts to fade to black as they dance across the floor. Before Gale is completely torn from this place Aphrodite whispers into his ear.

Aphrodite (Im): If we succeed, if I get a body... I will miss you. *she rests her head on his shoulders as he slowly fades away*

[Red Forest Cottage]

Gales eyes begin to flare up, tunnel vision grows to full sight. He feels a weight upon his shoulders. He raises his hand and with 3 quick taps on Kinara’s thighs.

Gale: *stressed* I’m back now, I don’t know your name yet but this is a hell of a great introduction.

Kinara flips backward off of Gale’s shoulders while he breathes normally again. She stalks around the fire back to her place with her eyes staring daggers into Gale’s face. The porcelain surface has gone, leaving not but a few scratches to commemorate Aphrodite’s appearance a few moments before. Gale holds up a polished piece of steel, he begins straightening his hair and checking his cuts. The rest of the party continues on with conversation while Gale composes himself.

Gale: Sorry for that encounter everyone, She gets excited you see.. the many years of searching have produced not clue one in changing our condition. Let me clear something up to ease your minds. She does not inhabit me out of choice, more like a curse. These glasses brought us together and have been unable to reverse the situation so at hand we work together, although at times it does get a little intrusive. She means no harm, but can come off a little harsh...

Aphrodite voice through Gale: Also the glasses don’t confine me, just act as a barrier to keep me from altering Gale to my appearance and ability. He has no control to keep me quiet. That doesn’t unnerve anyone does it? And Gale would enjoy some food friendly wind spirit. Also fox ma’am. The fact that Gale is not cracking a joke about your legs around his face is an extreme show of his gratitude for worrying about hi...

Gale: Ahhh, you may have spoken too soon, for her legs were... *looks at expressions on everyones face* I’m gonna hold back that comment... Plate please.

The conversation carries on for a little longer.

Nebu: Amusing.  I would recommend that those of us that aren't nocturnal get a fair share of rest.  Those of us that are can stay up and keep watch.

Gale: Luckily with 2 people at the helm *points to his head* one can rest while the other runs the show... I’ll take a watch. But before you rest, I believe young Mara was mentioning a lack of a weapon. *Gale pulls a fancy gem encrusted revolver out* I was making this for one of my fiances, but lets just say she won’t be wanting it anymore. Its a display piece but with some altering I can make this thing bring down a man if needed and less frilly looking. I can work on it while you sleep, maybe make a few rounds. I have a feeling this pleasantly scary woman has some components to make gun powder around her home.
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sat Aug 02, 2014 8:58 pm

[Forest Cottage]

Aeris relaxes at Gale's explanation. "I see. In that case... I still don't trust you. But I'm willing to give you the benefit of the doubt for now. Have some deer, dear."

After passing out more food to everyone, Aeris simply sits back and enjoys the conversation, until Gale says that she has the ingredients for gunpowder.

"Wait, what?" She blinks, honestly confused. "Why would I have charcoal, sulfur, and saltpeter? The only one I have is charcoal, and that's only for cooking; it isn't the weapons-grade stuff you'd need. I hunt with my sword and my winds, if need be. I've never used a gun, as far as I can recall." She smiled absently at them. "Sleep does sound wonderful, though... good night, everybody."

She then flops down off of her stump and goes straight to sleep, snoring loudly.

***

[Agrabah- Saloon]

Oh my word, this bread is good, Kirei muses as he munches on the roll in his hand. He overhears the brute insulting the bread and the waiter, and he nearly gets out of his seat in indignation. How dare y- oh, Sabrina and Cyan have this. Kirei shrugs, finishing off his roll as Cyan threatens the idiots into leaving the bar.

Something in his mind suddenly clicks into place, and his gaze flashes over to a Zuman who is just leaving the bar. The large horns and iron-hard carapace mark him as one of the insectoid Zuman species. He could be just another person leaving the bar after Cyan's show of intimidation, but something about the way he moves and the look in his eyes as he casts a lingering glance at the group says otherwise. His gait is full of confidence and his eyes are cold and disdainful rather than irritable or afraid. Nothing about him gives any indication that he found Cyan's display anything more or less than pathetic. He is powerful and experienced, that much is clear. However, he doesn't seem to be aggressive, so Kirei lets the stare pass without comment and turns to his companions and the waiter.

"Just water for me, if you don't mind," he addresses the red-haired man before turning to Sabrina. "Professor, you said we needed a treasure hunter, correct? My contact in Agrabah could find one easily... though we could simply ask around. Your call. Either way, I'll be getting information from my contact tonight."
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sat Aug 09, 2014 3:43 pm

[Red Forest-Cottage]

Mara kept looking around to keep track of everyone's words. So many wanted her attention, was a bit difficult to keep track of.

Mara: Busy conversations were a lot easier when most of everyone was talking orders for food...

Mara: *quietly to herself* I just want to see my brothers. Oh dear.

The fox girl walks up next to the lady and bends down.

Kinara: Well, you don't look like much of a fighter, so I'd take that offer from Mr. Split-Mind, you could use the extra weapon.

Kinara shoots a daggered glance at Gale. Mara sighs then looks up.

Mara: You're very right. Gale, I wouldn't mind that pistol, if you can make it useable and watch as I learn to use it properly.

Kinara nods, then pulls her forest cloak back on, glancing at a curled up Aeris on the dirt.

Kinara: Alright, if anybody needs me, I'll be back in an hour or so. I'm grabbing a few things I left when decided to bring kitty here. I can take a nap when I'm back and be just as bright and bushy tail as the others by the time we leave in the morning.

With a wave and an upward tail flick, the Fennac Zuman leaps into a sprint into the woods, disappearing into the shadows.

Kinara: *distant* When I get back, I call the cottage rafters!

After a few more minutes of Mara finishing her food, she collected the plates and placed them on the table in the cottage. She looked back outside, glancing at the snoozing Sylph. She turns to her attention to the devil-hound.

Mara: Nebu, since Aeris seems to be perfectly comfortable out here, she-who calls me-'Spice' and I will be sharing her bed.

With a yawn and a stretch she heads inside the cottage.



[Agrabah- Saloon]

Lucas finishes his bread stick delectably. Then he looks at the menu, ears lowered.

Lucas: I'm not exactly sure what to get but I'd like something filling.

He whines softly. Suddenly his ears perk up as he turns the menu fold.

Lucas: *pointing to the picture* Oh, this sandwich please!

The boy, grinning largely, grabs another piece of bread happily.

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sat Aug 09, 2014 8:53 pm

[Cottage]

K flicks Nebu on the head with her tail and follows Mara inside, sticking her tongue out at him as she closes the door behind her.

Nebu: Well, this is certain to be an entertaining trip, to say the very least.  I will be resting on the cottage roof if anyone has need of me.  A fine slumber to you all.

Nebu then turns and clears his way onto the roof with a single leap.  He lands lightly and turns, curling up there under the moonlight.  Inside, K tilts her head at the cot.  She sits and bounces on it for a moment and her ears droop down.

K: Meow. Soft.

She pokes the mattress and pouts for a moment.

K: Too cushy.

She curls herself up at the foot of the bed and closes her eyes.  Moments later, she's out like a light.  Every tiny snore is followed by a tiny meow.  In a matter of hours, her ears begin to twitch as the chattering of song bird outside drifts through the air.  She opens her eyes and turns her head to the window.  Daylight.  She closes her eyes for a moment, as if the go back to sleep.  Three seconds later, her eyes shoot back open and she  leaps out of the bed.

K: Meow!  All right!  Time to burn us a witch!

Nebu: Yes. Because using fire against her is clearly the most logical decision.

K leaps up and hooks into the cottage ceiling with her claws as the sudden voice sends her heart off on a race at a hundred thumps a second.  Nebu looks up at her, a casual smile upon his face.

Nebu: Good morning, Little One. Lady Mara.

K: WHAT'S THE BIG IDEA, FIDO, SNEAKING UP ON A GIRL, LIKE THAT?! AND I AM NOT 'LITTLE' I'M VERTICALLY CHALLENGED! GET IT STRAIGHT!

Nebu: Oh my. As impressive as your vocal range is, I'm more impressed that you know what the word 'vertical' means.

K: Why, you-!

K lets go of the ceiling and drops down.  She pounces at Nebu, but she falls right through him.  She looks around and finds him sitting across the room, beside Mara.

Nebu: Well, now that I'm sure everyone is awake, I believe we should be on our way.

K: You...you used me as an ALARM CLOCK?!

Nebu chuckles and walks outside.

Nebu: I believe we're all prepared to leave, yes?

K watches this with wide eyes and her ears standing up at attention.


Who died and made HIM leader?


[Agrabah]

Sabrina: I suppose I'll just settle for a breakfast bowl.

Axel: Coming right up.

Axel overhears mention of the group looking for a treasure hunter.  For a moment he pauses until he remembers what he's doing and turns to Cyan, who sits at the table, staring straight down at the menu.

Axel: And you, uh...ma'am.

Cyan: I do not eat.

Axel: You don't?

Cyan: I am an Advance-Autonomous-Cybernetic-Organism.  I do not require food.

Axel: You're a what?

Sabrina: She's a cyborg. Part human, part machine. She can eat, but she doesn't need to.

Axel: I see.  Well...do you want to?

Cyan is silent for a moment.  She turns her head up to look at Axel with her cold, robotic, expressionless face.

Cyan: The concept of desire is irrelevant to me.  Nothing ever asked what I 'want'.

Cyan returns her gaze to the table and picks up her menu, handing it to him without looking.  Axel takes up the menus from around the table, glancing back at Cyan several times before nodding and rushing off to get the orders in.

Sabrina: All right.  We can go stop by and have a word with Kirei's contact.  If she can find someone for us, then we'd be better off going straight there.

After the food arrives, Sabrina quickly eats through her small bowl and leaves a tip on the table for Axel.  She stands up and turns to the door, shoving her hands in her pockets.  Walking outside, she notices a Zuman man leaning against the railing by a table where two elderly men play a game of chess.  As they step through the doors, he stands upright.

Sabrina: Hey, this guy looks like he can handle himself.  Excuse me, sir.

???: Vector.

Sabrina: Huh?

???: That is my name.  What do you want?

Sabrina: Oh.  Well, are you, by chance, a treasure hunter?

Vector: In a manner of speaking.  And I assume you're in need of one to help you find an item of particularly high value, otherwise you wouldn't ask.

Axel stands inside, washing dishes when he glances through the window and sees the scene unfolding.

Sabrina: Y-yes. But, well, it isn't just any old item-

Vector: You're Sabrina Bizra. Among the most intelligent human beings alive.  Your city was recently trapped, quite mysteriously, behind a dome of unidentifiable energy and, somehow, you escaped.  Quite the tale.

Sabrina stares at Vector with her jaw dropped and her eyes wide.

Sabrina: H-how did you know-

Vector: A good treasure hunter keeps well informed.

Vector turns around and places a hand on the shoulder of one of the elders.  Then he reaches down and makes a move for the old geezer.

Vector: Checkmate.  I was able to catch your little display, inside, Professor.  Turning your walking gun on those oafs to defend that...defenseless boy.

Sabrina: Cyan is not a walking gun.  But yeah, I stepped in to help him.  What of it?

Vector: Your mind is your greatest strength.  Anyone can see that.  It's quite valuable.  And not just for a human.  In general.

Sabrina: For a human?

Vector stands upright against, towering over everyone else, even without his horns.

Vector: Humans are characteristically weak, professor.  You're fragile, slow, all around dreadfully unremarkable, really.  Not like the Non, who have gone on to become the subject of many a bedtime story used to frighten children into behaving.  Or the Zum.

Sabrina: Last I checked, the origin of the Zuman People is that you did something stupid and Neorah turned you into Animal People as a punishment.

Vector: And then it was the Zum she turned to in order to save her original creation, man, from destroying itself.  The Zum who turned their shame into unrivaled strength, professor.  Be it the elephant Zum, whose might is enough to bring down a building.  The reptile Zum, who can grow back lost limbs.  Or the beetle Zum, who can endure a shot from the mortar of the most destructive tank.  Or all Zum.  And Non, for that matter.  Those of us who the humans lump with the "monsters", simply because of our inhuman abilities.  Those of us not limited to a single affinity.

Sabrina: You talk like you're invincible.

Vector glances down at the elders sitting at the game table.

Vector: Far from it, professor.  Death.  That is the one weakness that vexes all things.  If it lives, then it must die.  If it exists, then it can be destroyed.

Vector steps down the stairs of the saloon.

Vector: Your intellect is an admirable strength, professor.  It might even allow you to transcend the limits of your kind...perhaps.  But I'm afraid I won't be helping you.

Sabrina: WHAT?!

Vector: Don't take it personally.  If it helps, I have my own agendas to attend to at the moment.  Beyond that, intellect or not, your current position is pathetic.  Intellect or no intellect, you're still weak.  But rather than try to grow your own strength, you let yourself become reliant on the strength of others.  A robot, an obviously skilled - what - mercenary?  And regardless of how young and inexperienced, a Zuman...mage, by the look of his attire, correct?  I won't add to an assembly that insulting to those of us who dedicate our lives becoming stronger.  Now, if you'll excuse me.

Vector uncrosses his arms and leaves.  Sabrina speechlessly watches him leave with wide eyes, her glasses having fallen down to the ball of her nose.

Sabrina: I...he...
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sun Aug 10, 2014 2:23 am

[cottage]

Gale watched as the party spoke. Fiddling with the fancy revolver he thinks what to do for ammunition.

Gale: (in his head) man Aphrodite. I had that Aeris pegged wrong… I was half expecting her to have an arsenal in her cottage with her explosive temperament.

Finally in a flinch of inspiration, as if an exclamation point appeared over his head he pulls one of his massive 50 caliber rounds out from his rifle…

Mara: You're very right. Gale, I wouldn't mind that pistol, if you can make it useable and watch as I learn to use it properly.

Gale looked up at the mention of his name.

Gale: “Ah, perfect.” (Gale turns to K and with a gesture shows for her to cover her ears.) “K darling please cover your ear.” (Turning back to Mara and with a sly look on his face) “Trust me young Buttefly. I would never let a woman leave without properly being trained to handle my weapon… but enough about other subjects, back to the Revolver… Time to get some gunpowder for you then.”

With a loud slam Gale hits the end of the round flush against a nearby rock. Those who understand the danger of bullets flinch and stare wide eyed at his recent action. As if nothing extremely stupidly dangerous just occurred Gale pulls the diamond tip from the round. Then slowly pours the gunpowder onto a clean plate… a clean plate way to close to the fire.

Nebu: (in his head) Either this man is a genius who understands exactly how everything works with ammunition or he is extremely stupid and the luckiest man in the world…  (with no show of effort Nebu uses his telepathic abilities to push the plate to what he deemed a safe distance from the fire, all without notice from anyone.)

Gale focuses all his attention for the time being filing the barrel and removing the decorative finishes from the gun that caused it to be unusable. The group finally finished their discussions and all seem to turn in for the night. Gale moves to a more strategic position and off and on stands and does a walk of the perimeter. Occasionally he converses with himself / Aphrodite and on occasion catches Nebu with one eye half opened watching some of his movements. During the down time he continues assembling Mara’s weapon… and with the materials he has he fashions 48 rounds during the night.

The sun begins to rise and he stands watching the sun break the horizon. He looks up to see a large birdlike figure fly overhead and smiles slightly while stretching. He pulls a small locket from his chest pocket and opens it. He kisses his fingers and touches the photo inside before closing it back up and placing once again in his chest pocket. He then pulls a strange circular orb out and sits against the cabin. With a magnifying lens attached to his glasses he etches a rune so small into it’s finish that a simple look from a distance would see just scratches. To this day the number of runes exceeds 35 but his hopes are too hit 100… A loud crash and complaining from inside immediately bring his attention to the moment. He stands and stretches for a little, throws few practice jabs at the air to wake his muscles up. He then cleans up his gear as the conversation moves outside. With a smile on his face he sets the revolver down on a stump along with a small belt for the ammunition. He always loves the looks on his customers faces when they can see a masterpiece come alive.

Gale: "Sleep well I hope, it's gonna be a long day ahead of us."
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Sun Aug 10, 2014 6:15 pm

Kirei's eyes narrow as he watches the beetle Zuman talk down to Sabrina. His lips pull into a frown as her composure falters, and he finally stands with a sigh and walks over to her as Vector leaves.

"He has something of a point. Humans, compared to Zuman, are weaker on average. And though you have intelligence, your strength is limited at this point." He places his hand lightly on her shoulder, making her look at him. "However, the word 'weakness' is just another way to say that one has room to grow. No weakness cannot be overcome. And while you did gather us together, we have our own reasons to stay. He's right, but for the wrong reasons. So understand what he says, but don't take it to heart. You're better than that, Sabrina."

Using her given name is a sign of his sincerity. Kirei only rarely speaks in a familiar manner to anyone. Keeping people at arm's length keeps it from hurting him if he has to betray their trust, or do something they dislike. However, she needs the reassurance; it is plain to see.

He turns and walks back to the table. "Come on. Sit and eat. We'll meet up with Kishiou after we're done. If we're lucky, she'll let us sleep at her place tonight; it'll save us the trouble of paying for an inn."

I just hope she doesn't break my ribs this time...

***

Aeris, as is her custom, rises before the sun. She momentarily debates doing something evil to Gale, but, since his work will benefit the kindly Mara, she decides against it. I'll just save the impulse for later.

Instead, she goes off and gathers berries from the forest, plucking them with the morning dew still awash on their skin. She gathers up a few herbs, in case they want to try cooking a breakfast and slowing down instead of just eating trail rations. She can simply store them before they leave if they decide not to, so it isn't a big deal to her.

Ah, evil impulse from earlier resurfacing, Aeris notes with a smile. I think a horrible wake-up call is in order. Maybe involving feline screams and a pulled tail...

"WHAT'S THE BIG IDEA, FIDO, SNEAKING UP ON A GIRL LIKE THAT?! AND I AM NOT 'LITTLE', I'M VERTICALLY CHALLENGED! GET IT STRAIGHT!"

...oh damn it. Nebu, you sneak. You shall pay for this. Eventually.

She sighs, flopping down on her stump with a pout. "Maaan, Ink and Eon need to co-ordinate better," she mutters. "Having two gadflies in the same party is a terrible idea. How are we supposed to play off one another?"

...I'm sorry?

"You'd better be."

Aeris looks up, seeing those outside and awake looking at her oddly. "...what?"
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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Mon Aug 11, 2014 10:53 pm

[Red Forest - cottage]

Kinara lay settled along Aeris's cottage rafters, long since returned. She was sleeping quite peacefully when a sudden loud smack on the ceiling beside her nearly made her lose her comfy perch.

Kinara: From Fennac's sun!

Her disorientation is quickly dismissed when she hears the screeches of an angry kitten. She looks down and see the canine rascal biting up a ceiling with the feline.

Kinara: Should've known.

Kinara shakes her head and jumps down to the cottage floor as Mara slowly wakes up to all the noise.

Mara: Hmm good morning everyone.

Mara gets up and puts on her boots before snatching her bag. Kinara nibbles on a small piece of dried meat from a container hidden in her cloak. The girls exit the cottage.

Kinara: Helloo sunshine.

The fox girl sniffs the air and gets a feel for the forest. Then she positions herself near the sylph to wait. Mara walks over to where Gale was hanging. She notices the revised gun on the stump.

Mara: Ah. Why thank you Gale. I'm sure it kept you occupied for most of the night.

She bends down and taps it with her finger.

Mara: So does it work?



[Agrabah]

Lucas spends most of the conversation just slightly behind Kirei. He growls under his breath.

Lucas: *thinking* That jerk, calling Sabrina weak. That's just what my sister always does. He wasn't at the lab. He doesn't know nothing.

He leans forward, ears at attention, and baring his teeth as well. This beetle is most unlikeable.

Lucas: * still thinking* Inexperienced? Sure. I am, but the second this guy calls me useless, I'm ripping his horns off.

He watches the beetle man walk away, growling under his breath. Then he blinks a double take when he notices Kirei speaking to Sabrina. Lowering his ears, Lucas relaxes his body.

Lucas flicks his tail in response to Kirei deciding to go back inside. He then glances back at Sabrina with a small sigh. Lucas runs up to her, hugging her waist.

Lucas: Miss Sabrina, I don't know if it'd make you feel any better but that beetle jerk smelled badly like drinker's barf mixed with tropical lavender and azalea.

With a soft smile, Lucas wags his tail gently. Then, legging go of Sabrina, he follows Kirei back inside.

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PostSubject: Re: Wishful Thinking: Voyage of the Sun   Tue Aug 12, 2014 2:02 am

[K's Party]

Nebu: I assure you, Lady Mara, it is quite functional.  The man may be a buffoon, but observation suggests that he is a buffoon who knows firearms.

K walks outside with her hands behind her head and passes by everyone.  Once she's a good few feet away, she pivots around on one foot and faces the others.

K: You comin' or what?

She swiftly turns back around and continues marching on.

Nebu: Perhaps you ought to take out your map before you continue along in the wrong direction.

K pauses and her ears stand up.  She slowly turns her head and glares at Nebu over her shoulders.

Nebu: Ah.  Finally listening, are we?  Well, good.  Efreet is to the Northwest.  I will take you that far.

K: Why do you care?

Nebu: If you die in this forest, then I'd feel responsible.  But if this 'Mel' woman roasts you alive after that, then I'll have no trouble sleeping at night.  Besides, with you at the front, we'd all wind up led over a cliff.  Among us all I believe only two of us can fly.  Now come along and I'll take you out of here.

Nebu turns and walks off to the Northwest and, after a moment more of glaring, K relents.  Her ears droop back down and she crosses her arms, pouting, mumbling, and looking off to the side.  In a matter of hours, the group has covered some fair ground.  Here the trees seem to be at their thickest, with the canopy overhead eclipsing the sun.  Nebu pauses and sits.

Nebu: Hold.

K: What is it, pooch?

Nebu: That is not my name.

K: I've been calling you stuff since we met!

Nebu: Yes, but the difference between now and then is that THEN it was amusing.  We are not alone.

K glances up at her ears as they twitch to the sounds of rustling and heavy footfalls nearby.  From behind the tears emerges a colossus.  A bipedal bear-like creature covered in scars.  It has a thick coat of black fur and stops when is sees the group before him.

Nebu: A Mordubeast. Do not make eye-

The beast roars and Nebu turns around, finding K staring directly up at it.

Nebu: ...Nevermind, then.  Very well.  Who among those of us that can take care of ourselves would like to-

Suddenly a thunderous boom bounces through the trees from overhead.  A beam of green light ricochets along the tree trunks and strikes the beast in the chest.  It cries out and staggers back.

Lassy: Yeehaw!

The courageous cowgirl leaps down from the tree branches like a ninja, landing between the group and the monster.  In one fluent motion she lunges toward it with her odd weapon in hand and lands on the other side.  Seconds later, it falls and she twirls the gun-blade at her side before placing it in the holster on her back.

Nebu: That...also works well.

Lassy: Clean 'n' Quick.  Just like the good ol' days!  Now then, I had some business to attend to.  What was'at, again?

She pauses for a moment before opening her eyes to a familiar smell and looking over her shoulders.

Lassy: Oh, right.

Suddenly she's back across the forest floor, standing before the group before singling out K and picking her up by one of the bandages miraculously still somehow wrapped around her near cutting-board flat torso.  Nebu looks to the others.

Nebu: So shall we count backwards from five or thr-

K: Hey! Le'me go, lady! Just who do you think I am?! If you don't put me down, you're gonna have claw marks in places you didn't know you had! You hear me?! LET GO!

Lassy: Quit yer hollerin', runt!  I'm tryin' tah think!

K: RUNT?! Lady, when I get down from here, I'm gonna-

While K grabs her arm to try and pull herself free, Lassy pulls out a poster from her pocket and then looks back at the raging little kitten in her hand.

Lassy: Now, that can't be right.  But'cha smell just like her.  Right down to the purdy-girl perfume buried under all the soot.

K: Are you ignoring me?!

Lassy: As if that's possible. Pipe down, ankle biter.  You're off the hook...for now.

Lassy drops K and crosses her arms before taking note of the others.  She places on hand behind her back, on the hilt of that weapon she'd used before, but more casually as opposed to actually preparing to wield.

Lassy: Lassy.  Bounty Hunter.  The kid...had familiar scent.  Who're you lot?

Nebu: Oh my. Bounty Hunters are after you, little one?  I read that you were a thief, but I didn't know you were THAT infamous.

K: I'm NOT- er...I mean I TOLD YOU TO STAY OUTTA ME HEAD!


[Sabrina's Party]

Sabrina glances to Kirei through the corner of her eye.  She adjusts her glasses so that a glare catches in their lenses, standing with her head held high again as she pets Lucas on the head.

Sabrina: Thanks for the brown nosing, you two.

Cyan: Actually, based on olfactory analysis and collected database on aromas, his scent was more akin to-

Sabrina: Cyan, he wasn't being serious.

Cyan: ...oh.

Sabrina: All right, let's go see Kirei's contact.  If she can help us find what we're looking for and keep us from having to pay the fees in this place, then I'm glad to meet her.

She puts on a smile as she crosses her arms on the table and leans forward.
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