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  1. #9691
    Astonishing Member Lord Falcon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrSandman View Post
    "I did my very best.....to minimize her suffering. It would be better if she died here....but that is beyond my power now. She will be a puppet in the hands of Fate. And you...."



    "...I'm sorry......but I want to see you suffer now...." At this distance, Asha'rah could see Parsics open eyes, and in the iris of one of them another eye opened.

    It blinked once.

    Her other eyes exploded in a mass of writhing barbed phantasmal tentacles that Asha'rah just barely trapped within Heavens gate. The rest of her body ruptured only a moment later, flinging Asha'rah back as...something....thrashed about from her immobile body, swinging it around like a weapon along with a dozen elongated arms that triggered horrible pain upon contact.

    It was a beast from outside, a creature of void forced to exist beyond the current extent of the universe.

    Meanwhile the fight between Etrina and Chrona was escalating, the two exchanging blows furiously with each other. The aspect of time was swift, almost supernaturally go, but Etrina judged her angle of attack and deflected with her chronically charged wand. It one could get a good look at the aspects face, one might even observe something akin to a smile.

    Then....Chrona slowed for a moment, taking a little more time the usual to aim before launching a thrust attack with her sword. Etrina, not wasting a chance, slide the wand all the way to the hilt and slammed her hand down on Chronas wrist before sweep kicking her feet out and slamming the time aspect into the ground. The sword hilt slipped from her grasp, caught before it hit the group by Etrina who then flung it beyond the time aspects grasp and towards Asha'rah.
    The golden-haired woman was from an existence unknown to Asha'rahj, an existence before creation itself. She held a grudge, accusing Asha'rah of polluting her very existence, and now sought vengeance. What was Asha'rah to say to that? It did not seem within her character to do such a thing knowingly, and she knew of no existence outside of the universes besides Zeno and his first servants. But that was a question for later. Today was for Etrina.

    Her Heaven's Gate barrier successfully encircled the golden woman's head, trapping an explosion of tentacles?! within. They were ghostly things, yet not even calling them souls would describe them properly. They were beyond anything Asha'rah could remember witnessing. A moment later, the woman's body erupted as well, and Asha'rah was hurled away as one struck her. Pain shot through her soul, pain beyond what came from the impact itself. It was the pain of the other, pain of the anathema, pain of something incompatible with existence itself.

    Asha'rah forced herself to focus, shaking her head as she climbed to her feet. With her orbs around the golden woman's head, she still held a distinct advantage, even if her opponent did not know it. Behind her, she heard the clatter of a sword cluttering free, and then of it being hurled through the air. Etrina was doing well.

    "You have given me something to ponder. I may have to look further into this plight you claim." Asha'rah said, not so much catching the sword as allowing it to fall into her palm.

    "But today is for someone beyond you and I."

    Asha'rah leaped forward into the air, hacking away at the tentacles and leaving molten stumps in her wake. It had been many years since she last trained with a dao, but some skill remained, and this sword carried similar properties While she carved a path forward, Asha'rah's whirling, flowing aura within the Heaven's Gate barrier surrounding the woman's head turned to creation. A continuous serrated blade formed, rotating as it was carried by the orbs spinning around the golden woman's head. Blood and ichor poured forth, the rending of flesh and sickening sawing of bone resounding until her head came apart from her body. The orbs carried their bloody prize forward to Asha'rah, where she took aim at the eye that had spawned another eye. Without another word, she plunged the sword straight into the eye, splitting it in twain.

  2. #9692
    Voice of the Authorities Cleric of Hellís Brigade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tami View Post
    Meagan looked at the scar, then up to Jinzi, "Well, you survived your first combat. In my book that makes you a true warrior. Even if the one who attacked you was deceitful and dishonorable."
    ďI think Iíll leave the fighting to you lot. You are much better at it than I. More than content to stay in the back and cheer.Ē
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  3. #9693
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cthulhu_of_R'lyeh View Post
    Ishtar head the words.

    Of how she had elected to sleep with Jack- the first since that day- without wholly knowing why ...

    Yet they did not register.

    Instead, Sarada would feel it as the Oni struggled to sift through the tidal wave of emotions, and pain that sought to drown her now. A labor that was slow, and difficult. And as Ishtar clung to Sarada both to comfort- and for comfort- she continued to tremble and weep for several moments in silence; until finally managing to force through to where Sarada found herself now:

    Empty, and alone. With no doubt in her long-troubled mind, that this whole thing was a fault of her own making. Sure that Ishtar herself would not care, in the end, beyond a guilt that the remembrance was the result of her own questioning. And that was true in a way, it was ...

    "... wrong."

    A single word, softly muttered as Ishtar finally found the strength of will to move, and speak, of her own accord. And after a moment more of silence, the golden-eyed Oni continued softly.

    "That guilt ... you did not bring this on yourself."

    It was Parsley, more than anyone else; and Ishtar would never forget that as well.

    Yet there was a more important thing to focus her attentions on, now that all of Sarada's tale had been processed. So then, slowly, the Oni slowly pulled the Saiyan close. Into as gentle an embrace as could be managed, so that new feelings- a slow, and pervasive feeling of warmth, and comfort- could begin to trickle in; and be accompanied by the warmth of Ishtar's own body.

    "I am here ... Sarada. I will always be here."

    And as the Oni spoke those words, and held Sarada close for comfort, and warmth; the young Saiyan would remember that the Oni could not lie.

    "I am sorry you ... had to experience this. Yet I am at the same time glad, that it was me." The golden-eyed Oni said softly the, after several long minutes had passed- time enough for Sarada herself to find a measure of peace, and calm ...

    "This burden you carry ... if you would have me ..."

    The words failed then, for in truth the Oni was not skillful enough at the moment to weave them, yet what could be felt through their bond shone through clearly in what was intended. Sarada would not be alone in this, anymore. Ishtar was offering what she could. An ear to listen, a shoulder to cry on- should it ever be needed again- and even her heart.

    "You are not alone ... okay ?"
    Sarada had never felt so raw and open in her life. To pour out her heart to another person, actually reveal the side of herself that she kept hidden from everyone -- including her own family -- left her with nothing but an empty slate. She had felt so much in the last few minutes that she had nothing left to feel. She just felt empty and devoid of life. Was this what depression felt like?

    If any part of her thought that confiding in Ishtar would make her feel better than she did when she kept it a secret, that part was disappointed. She felt horrible. Not only did she force herself to relive that horror for no real reason -- simply because Ishtar shared the worst trauma in her life -- but she also forced the Oni to feel everything that she felt. The anger, sadness, dread, pain, guilt, and self-hatred, everything was shared between them. That was a torrential downpour of negativity that she had no right to place on Ishtar's shoulders.

    But, selfishly, she had. And judging from the lengthy silence between them as Ishtar struggled to deal with everything she had just heard and felt, there was nothing good to be said about it. What could she say? Some generic platitude? Some lengthy monologue about how Sarada wasn't at fault for what happened to her? Neither of those things were what she wanted to hear.

    And neither of those things were what she heard. In the end, after a lengthy silence, Ishtar spoke. Wrong. One word, followed by more. You did not bring this on yourself. And as she lay there, wrapped in her strong arms and deriving what joy she could from the comforting gesture, she was rendered silent. It was as if she had never considered that it wasn't her fault. All this time, she thought secretly to herself that maybe she had done something wrong prior to what happened. After all, bad things happen to bad people; what could a child have done to deserve that? She didn't know. Perhaps it was preemptive punishment for what she would do in the future; she was a Saiyan, after all.

    "I..." she started before trailing off after Ishtar told her that she would be there for her. Words failed the both of them, but the feelings passed between them spoke larger volumes than the longest speech ever could. From Ishtar, the desire to offer her whatever she needed from her; from Sarada, unbridled gratitude and appreciation. The Oni laying at her side, whose arms were wrapped warmly around her body, could provide the kind of comfort that Maiz could not.

    She wanted to forget what she had just forced herself to relive. She needed to pry herself from the past and return to the present. She didn't want to feel anything negative anymore, only positive things. There were only two things that could accomplish that. "Thank you," she stated, offering verbal affirmation of the feelings of gratitude she transmitted moments earlier. "I just... I want to forget everything I just felt." She looked away, feeling strangely abashed about what she was about to say. "I... want you to... have me." If her skin weren't so dark, she would have been bright red. Her face felt so hot from just the words passing through her lips.

    "Then, when you're done, I'm going to punch you in the face until you learn how to dodge. How does that sound?"

  4. #9694
    Guardian Empress of Earth Tami's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleric of Hell’s Brigade View Post
    “I think I’ll leave the fighting to you lot. You are much better at it than I. More than content to stay in the back and cheer.”
    Meagan gave him a big smile, "Those that can, fight. Those that can't, lead the cheer." Her smile became warmer, and a little shyer, "Without your support, we would never have won our fight and gathered up the Dragon Balls. Don't undersell yourself. You might not be a fighter, but you're as brave as any of us, and a whole lot smarter. I appreciate everything you've done."
    Original join date: 11/23/2004
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  5. #9695
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    Quote Originally Posted by grampagen View Post
    ďNo, and certainly not with this breadth of things at stake,Ē he said, ďAnd yet I suspect this is hardly the last task our host has in store for us.Ē

    The memory of Pantaloon's confession was brought to bear, and Evangeline's dabbling with destiny was ever fresh in his mind as the stars emerged in the skies above. What was once an expanse of mystery now were trillions of eyes set above, looking downward.

    ďWe would be remiss to be negligent. Once the opportunity to act is lost, it is gone forever.Ē



    ďHeh.Ē

    A short chuckle was all he could afford, the hollow smile stuck on his face, as his heavy heart beat and his arms trembled weightless against the pulse.

    It wasn't impossible after all.

    ďWe all have our business to contend with, I suppose."

    But for the fault of his lacking will, the inability to face her with all he had without discarding the lives and concerns of his comrades, perhaps he could have faced his Kru himself. Instead he had busied himself with confronting one he had decided to blame for her fall instead of seeing to rectify the misdemeanor himself.

    He hadn't left to do what he had to.

    "Ours...Ē he paused, the words halted by a reluctance, ď...has concluded, for a time

    It had been his duty to honour the memory of the late Tiger School and save Kenshiko. Now she was gone to him.

    ďYou fulfilled your end of our compact. Mere words cannot express my gratitude for this. Yet I dishonour you. I have fallen well short.Ē

    The Knife had seen to it, and only Slak's mercy left her fate uncertain. He'd found the moment to try and get the measure of her, but he found little there in the way of resolution.

    ďThe Colonel has nothing left. This was not rendered by any deed of mine, so our compact continues until I fulfill it. If you need anything...even the impossible...then I'll see it done.Ē

    He rest a hand on the Nevadian's shoulder with a brusque pat, nod once, and walked to the inner chambers of the Lookout.
    Held was silent as Ochazuke proceeded beyond him. His words were at once both direct and elusive, a rare quality in the spoken word. Yet, the Nevadian could sense from his comrades unease, that it was not out of artifice, but something that occurred that the warrior was either unable, or unwilling to comment on. Not that Held had any particular issue, as it was.

    It was clearly none of his business to begin with, and the very fact that Ochazuke had confided in Held, and no other, during such dire circumstances, made clear how personal this was to him.

    Well, we all have our problems, I suppose.....But now what?

    The Nevadian glanced at the backdoor to the transport, his breathing growing heavier as he did.

    Even know, he could sense her, like a wild animal, a dragon guarding the treasure in the cave that held her. A feeling of foreboding overcame the Nevadian, and for a moment, he considered turning away, going about his business until she had been dealt with, a fierce tiger hauled away to a captivity, where she would no longer be a danger.

    He shifted, poised to turn away, before a tinge of emotion ran through him. Perhaps it was some manner of misplaced guilt or responsibility. After all, it was he who led the raid that slew so many of her comrades, and it was he who made the decision to capture Kenshiko alive. Ochzuke might have made the request, but it was the Nevadian who upheld their compact.

    To simply walk away from that, to leave her to her fate, knowing that he had personally played so pivotal a role in deciding her destiny...It felt unpalatable to the Nevadian. It was unbecoming, if nothing else.

    This is stupid, Held. Just let the day end on a positive note, and count your treasure later......

    He eyed the door.

    Don't do it.

    Walking forward confidently, without a hint of trepidation, he gripped the doors handle and opened it.

    It's not worth it.

    The Unicorn walked into the Tiger's cage without a sound, save for the clanging of metal on metal.

    God damnit.

  6. #9696
    Astonishing Member KingofPie's Avatar
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    Default Sasheem's Mystical Adventure! Part 3: The Siege

    "Oh! Now boom!" Sasheem stated excitedly, charging up his ki and ready to eradicate the castle. It was a stone structure that looked practically abandoned. Tattered green banners stood hauntingly swaying back in forth with the current. The courtyard had a slew of armored skeletons halfway buried in the sands. Behind it stood a sunken ship. A black flag with a skull and crossbones plastered on it. Sasheem didn't really care, it all would be gone in a second.

    "Wait!" Kelpie waved her arms, standing in front of Sasheem. "That's my family's home for centuries, you can't destroy it!"

    Sasheem didn't seem to cease in charging up his ki and in fact decided to charge it up further.

    "You'll destroy the treasure there!" Kelpie attempted.

    Sasheem had the blasts in the palm of his hands ready.

    "Including the crown! The jewel! The entire thing we came for!" Kelpie hammered home.

    Sasheem hesitated then...He did want it destroyed...but he had to have absorbed the power first...or did he? The Majin did not know. He finally lowered his hands, glaring at Kelpie with irritation. "Bah.." he sunk his head low and swam over towards the castle. Using a much smaller blast he shot open the doors, a seemingly empty room greeting them.

    The room was lined with large portraits, now damaged irreparably, side by side with coats-of-arms, now empty aside from one. A large staircase led to the other rooms in the castle. "Where taco?" Sasheem asked.

    "He's likely in the throne room, the slimy bastard," Kelpie spat. "I hope you rip him in two!"

    Finally, the mermaid said something he agreed with. Sasheem rubbed his had together, nodding excitedly. He stopped once a large shadow, looming behind the staircase made a move. It was a giant crab! "Keheheh..." the crab gave a deep, hearty chuckle. "So...none of the other generals have reported back yet. I know the merpeople are far too weak to dispose of them...but, I see you have hired help!" the crab stated, lifting his claw, over Sasheem and slamming it downward. "But even he won't stop me!"

    Sasheem effortlessly held up a hand and blocked the claw from reaching any further momentum. Kelpie and Seal quickly cleared out of the way. The crab looked on in shock, attempting to wrench his claw away from the Majin only to realize he could not break the little creature's grip. Sasheem squeezed once, causing the crab's shell to crack between his fingertips.

    At this the crab quickly lurched backwards. "Wait, WAIT! This isn't possible! What the hell is this thing?!" the Crab glanced around the room, his ayes finally swiveling around to a coat of arms. From there with his good claw, he grabbed onto a a massive greatsword and jabbed it at Sasheem who quickly swam out of the way, as the sword embedded itself into the floor. "Die you...whatever the hell you are!" the crab shouted, swinging the sword wildly without any skill or grace, causing Kelpie and Seal to swim around wildly just to avoid a single swing of the sword.

    Sasheem fared more easily in dodging the sword swipes, before glancign to the coat of arms himself...there lay another weapon on it. A hammer...what better weapon to crack a crab's shell with. "Heh heh..." Sasheem grinned, grabbing the weapon and turning around to face the crab, a grin on his face.

    "I...don't suppose you're willing to have a truce?" the crab asked.

    Later...

    Munching on a the last of the pair of crab legs, Sasheem, Kelpie, and Seal continued up the stairs.

    "You could at least share..." Kelpie mumbled silently, to which Sasheem scoffed at.

    The Majin paused. There were other assailants, and army of sharks. They didn't last long. Sasheem decided not to waste any time, and zapped the section of the water the charging sharks were swimming in, to change it and the sharks themselves into a shark fin soup. Much easier than taking the time to cook it like he did with the crab.

    "Wh-whaaaat d-d-d-did you?" Kelpie stammered as Sasheem took the time to drink the soup section of the water.


    "Want some...? No get!" Sasheem taunted, not quite noticing the mermaid and the seal were too stunned by the instantaneous food beam to want any soup at all. Sasheem finished off the soup and continued to charge forward. The rest of the Tako Tribe's troops weren't anything worthwhile, at least not to Sasheem. He breezed through them with minimal effort, until he got to a large pair of doors, made of solid gold plating.

    "That's the throne room!" Seal exclaimed. "I haven't seen it in years..."

    Kelpie looked as if she were about to burst into tears. "I haven't been here since-,"

    Sasheem, blasting a hole through the doors casually swam in, causing Kelpie to visibly shake in rage behind him.

  7. #9697
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    Default Sarada Time Skip III: Law & Order

    “Good morning, Ruca. I'm Ree Port,” spoke a human woman in a sharp blue blazer. “The top story of the day is the ground-breaking child molestation trial that has shaken Vocado to its core. WWRN's Vocadoan correspondent Corre has more.”

    The scene then shifted to a building on Vocado that looked similar to a courthouse on Earth. In the center of the screen was a dark-skinned human woman in a white dress. “It's the second week of the shocking tribunal hearing that will decide the fate of accused child molester, Dashir, and the details expressed thus far have been nothing short of stomach-turning. One by one, 93 of the alleged 150 victims have come up to the stand and offered their experiences. While they vary in details, one thing remains the same – nothing Dashir made them do was of their own free will.

    The shot then switches to inside the tribunal hall, where those in attendance listen with grim expressions as the victims recount their harrowing experiences.

    Quote Originally Posted by “Victim #23”
    “He made me take my clothes off so he could take pictures of me,” one girl stated, eyes dripping tears down her cheeks. “He kept touching my cheek with his...” She couldn't finish and broke down into tears.
    Quote Originally Posted by “Victim #46”
    A young man, barely older than Sarada, spoke with a stern scowl, undoubtedly to keep from breaking down himself. “He lured me into his ice cream shop with a promise of free ice cream. He gave it to me, then asked when I finished how I was going to repay this great kindness. I said I thought it was free, then he sneered and said that he wasn't talking about money. That was when he dragged me into the back room.”
    Quote Originally Posted by Sarada
    “He kept making me give him oral sex.” Sarada balled her fists so tightly, her nails punched through the skin. She relished in the pain, as it gave her something to focus on until she finished. “I begged him to stop, but he wouldn't.”
    Quote Originally Posted by “Victim 156”
    The youngest and most recent victim, only six, stood with her parents beside her as her father read her testimony on a piece of paper. “And that son of a bitch snatched my daughter up when I went inside to get some groceries. I was only gone a minute, and when I get back, she was gone. I didn't find her again until a week later. She was lying on the street, naked, bleeding, with this dead look in her eyes. I begged her to tell me what happened, but she only told me that the scary man wouldn't stop making her hurt all over.” He then turned to Dashir, who was inside a dark blue shield to protect him from any assailants. “I hope they tear you limb from limb when you go to prison. I can't wait to read your obituary.” His voice trembled with untold rage, his muscles taut from restraining himself from lashing out at the shield.”
    Quote Originally Posted by “Victim 89”
    The oldest victim, 21, spoke monotone, as if reading a book report. Every so often, there was a hitch or crack in her voice that proved that the monotony was so she could get through this without falling to pieces. “And on the fifth night, he undressed me, then proceeded to penetrate me again, while penetrating me with his tail. I passed out soon after from the immense pain I felt. When I came to, he was wiping me off with a warm towel, while saying that he made a bit of a mess on me.”
    The screen then returned to Corre, who was shaking her head sadly. “Those are just a small sampling of the larger amount of harrowing experiences that have been recounted over the last several days. It has been the prosecutions main strategy to just let the victims speak for themselves. The defense, on the other hand, is playing the mental illness card, hoping against hope that the tribunal will see not a monster without mercy or decency, but a sick, unwell man who would be better served in a mental institution rather than the execution block. Either way, the trial is due to conclude either today or tomorrow with the closing statements. Back to you, Ree.”
    On Vocado, the trial of the century – as it had been dubbed – had the entire planet gripped with anger and disbelief. Many absolutely could not believe they allowed someone of this caliber, who was capable of this level of depravity, to continue operating with impunity for this long. Thirteen years of savage, predatory behavior in the Meat Market, preying upon the youth whom King Mato declared where the planet's future. When reached for comment, he had this to say.

    Quote Originally Posted by “King Mato”
    “I'm saddened and disgusted at the reports being turned in by the brave young Saiyans during this unprecedented trial. It's my hope that justice is served for them all, and that this serves as a cautionary tale for anyone who would even dream of trying something like this in the future. The children of Vocado are our races future, and it's our duty as the current generation to not only train them in the ways of decency and uprightness, but also to protect them who have no use for either. We failed the 156 victims of Dashir in the past; I encourage everyone to do their upmost to make sure this doesn't happen again.”
    Sarada sat in the gallery every day during the trial. While her stomach lurched every time Dashir moved a muscle inside his protective shield, she knew that she had to be there. Not only to give her own testimony, but to also give silent support to her fellow victims.

    Hearing what they went through, she realized that Ishtar was right. She wasn't alone. There were dozens of people who felt as empty and violated as she did, as dirty and defiled, and as guilty and angry. There were dozens who were praying that their tormentor and abuser would finally taste the comuppance they had all dreamed of for years. There were dozens just like her, who all just wanted this to be over so they could finally move on with their lives.

    She spoke with the prosecutor about his strategy before she testified; mainly to see if she could get out of coming forward. He told her that the trial was basically for show; there was no way any tribunal would acquit a man accused of the things Dashir was accused of, not with so many victims telling the same story.

    With that, she went forward and told her testimony with her head held high. Not once did she look at Dashir, though she knew he was looking at her. She hoped he was thinking back to the little girl he violated years ago, and felt confusion at how that girl could grow up to be this strong, confident woman. She hoped he felt a ping of fear at the very thought of what she was going to do to him if he got acquitted. She hoped he hoped he would be convicted so he could escape the wrath of his victims, many of which were Elites and Super Elites.

    One the final day, the defense and prosecution gave their final remarks. The government appointed defense attorney given to Dashir – some claimed they heard him muttering something about an 'accursed short straw' during one recess – was clearly grasping at straws when he gave his final remarks. He begged the tribunal to look past the testimonies given by the dozens of victims and to look at Dashir for what he really was: a sick man who needed help. Executing him wouldn't help doctors determine if attraction to children was a treatable disease or not.

    It was an argument that made measure of sense, but not nearly enough to sway the minds of those in the gallery.

    The prosecution based his remarks on the victims, the children, teenagers, and adults whom society failed to protect. He said they owed it to them to rectify the apathy with which they treated their suffering for so long.

    With a literal mountain of evidence and countless testimonials that all added up to the same general sequence of events at their disposal, the tribunal – a group of 11 people tasked with determining the defendant's guilt or innocence – began its deliberation. They discussed it for exactly two minutes, the minimal amount, before returning to their seats. When asked for their decisions, the results were overwhelming.

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Guilty.”

    “Very well,” the judge overseeing the proceedings stated plainly. “The decision has been set. The defendant will be remanded for three days until his sentencing. Tribunal is adjourned.”

    Horror. Grief. Disbelief. Anger. Fear.

    Five emotions all battled for prime position on Dashir's face as he was dragged away by the bailiffs. Five emotions that had defined Sarada and the other victims for too long.

    Sarada felt nothing but a tremendous wave of overwhelming relief. Some of those sitting beside her gave way to tears of joy; she simply sighed and scrubbed her face raggedly. “It's over,” she whispered to herself. A girl, the same age as her, heard her and smiled.

    “Well? How do you feel?” Maiz asked with a soft smile.

    Sarada had shed the annoying red dress she had worn to tribunal that day – one of about twenty she purchased online from a store on Turrip for just this occasion. She was in the process of deciding whether to bring some with her to i̶m̶p̶r̶e̶s̶s̶ show Jack. She was leaning toward yes. “Relieved,” she answered with a deep sigh. “But, I feel that I'm not done just yet.”

    Maiz knew what she was talking about and nodded solemnly.

    At last, the eight year long nightmare was over. Another was only just beginning.
    Last edited by Sub-Zero MKA; 05-02-2018 at 03:59 PM.

  8. #9698
    Voice of the Authorities Cleric of Hellís Brigade's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tami View Post
    Meagan gave him a big smile, "Those that can, fight. Those that can't, lead the cheer." Her smile became warmer, and a little shyer, "Without your support, we would never have won our fight and gathered up the Dragon Balls. Don't undersell yourself. You might not be a fighter, but you're as brave as any of us, and a whole lot smarter. I appreciate everything you've done."
    He smiles back just as widely.

    “This has been an excellent evening, Meagan. Thank you, this has been perfect. I know you must leave soon, but when you get back....would you like to do it again? A date I mean?”
    Black Knight of SO
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  9. #9699
    Guardian Empress of Earth Tami's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleric of Hell’s Brigade View Post
    He smiles back just as widely.

    “This has been an excellent evening, Meagan. Thank you, this has been perfect. I know you must leave soon, but when you get back....would you like to do it again? A date I mean?”
    "I'd love to." she smiled and took his hand in hers, giving it a gentle, affectionate squeeze.
    Original join date: 11/23/2004
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  10. #9700

    Default Rewind: Held

    Quote Originally Posted by Miburo View Post
    Held was silent as Ochazuke proceeded beyond him. His words were at once both direct and elusive, a rare quality in the spoken word. Yet, the Nevadian could sense from his comrades unease, that it was not out of artifice, but something that occurred that the warrior was either unable, or unwilling to comment on. Not that Held had any particular issue, as it was.

    It was clearly none of his business to begin with, and the very fact that Ochazuke had confided in Held, and no other, during such dire circumstances, made clear how personal this was to him.

    Well, we all have our problems, I suppose.....But now what?

    The Nevadian glanced at the backdoor to the transport, his breathing growing heavier as he did.

    Even know, he could sense her, like a wild animal, a dragon guarding the treasure in the cave that held her. A feeling of foreboding overcame the Nevadian, and for a moment, he considered turning away, going about his business until she had been dealt with, a fierce tiger hauled away to a captivity, where she would no longer be a danger.

    He shifted, poised to turn away, before a tinge of emotion ran through him. Perhaps it was some manner of misplaced guilt or responsibility. After all, it was he who led the raid that slew so many of her comrades, and it was he who made the decision to capture Kenshiko alive. Ochzuke might have made the request, but it was the Nevadian who upheld their compact.

    To simply walk away from that, to leave her to her fate, knowing that he had personally played so pivotal a role in deciding her destiny...It felt unpalatable to the Nevadian. It was unbecoming, if nothing else.

    This is stupid, Held. Just let the day end on a positive note, and count your treasure later......

    He eyed the door.

    Don't do it.

    Walking forward confidently, without a hint of trepidation, he gripped the doors handle and opened it.

    It's not worth it.

    The Unicorn walked into the Tiger's cage without a sound, save for the clanging of metal on metal.

    God damnit.
    A looming atmosphere of heavy, sinking dread would meet the pomp of his stride fell. The blink and dull glow of the transport's panel instruments served only to push the shadows forward in that dark place, a thick quiet broken only by the footfalls and the scent of old blood.

    "You."

    The voice rang out behind Held, low, seething, bitter. The fallen Tiger's shape was hidden where she sat curled against the wall, beside the unmoving black silhouette pooled on the seat next to her. Under her crimson tresses Kenshiko beheld the Nevadian as he stepped into her territory. She raised her right hand idly toward him and pressed her thumb inward, breaking the silence with the dull thud of metal-on-metal. Suspended between her fingers were two capsules, at her side she was seated by many more.

    "Looking for something?"

  11. #9701
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tami View Post
    "I'd love to." she smiled and took his hand in hers, giving it a gentle, affectionate squeeze.
    He squeezes back and they continue on. Hours pass, wonderous sights and shows seen to their delight, until the evening ends back at Capsule Corp. He brings their entwined hands up and kisses hers gently.

    “My lady, this has been wonderful, but alas I fear our night is up. No doubt Eva is waiting for you and Held’s ship does need my attention. But, honestly Meagan this has been the best day I’ve had in a long time.”
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  12. #9702
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleric of Hell’s Brigade View Post
    He squeezes back and they continue on. Hours pass, wonderous sights and shows seen to their delight, until the evening ends back at Capsule Corp. He brings their entwined hands up and kisses hers gently.

    “My lady, this has been wonderful, but alas I fear our night is up. No doubt Eva is waiting for you and Held’s ship does need my attention. But, honestly Meagan this has been the best day I’ve had in a long time.”
    She nods shyly, "Same for me. We'll see each other soon." Meagan steps back, her hand refusing to let go of his until she had no choice. Then she playfully smirked slightly, "Don't forget to put a muffin button in Held's ship." she winked then walked outside, pausing for a moment to wave, before leaving the building.

    Though it was getting late, she decided to walk a little before the long flight back to the Lookout.
    Original join date: 11/23/2004
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  13. #9703
    Retired Overlord
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    Default Homecoming Part 1

    A low hum permeated the air for a brief moment, followed by the rhythmic jingle of keys.

    It didn't match the grandiose mansion of her family estate, not by a long shot even, but the cottage that Etrina currently called home was cozy enough...and more importantly it met the criteria of being both private and nowhere near her former home. This level of autonomy had been a welcome alternative to the well groomed lifestyle...that her father allowed it in the end had seemed less a victory then she had imagined it.

    The seals had not been tampered with while she was gone, so at the very least nobody had tried to rob her while she was away.....Which meant she wouldn't have to clean up the mess of an attempted burglary. Always a plus after a long week of....

    Etrina immediately collapsed in the nearest seat. Being back here....at home......really hammered in the context of everything that had happened while she was away. Fighting a Vitalmancer in the mines below a town, training in an underground geofront, fighting an well trained army, gather mystic artifacts to summon a dragon to grant a wish, meeting her future husband.........

    ......and with thoughts of Zaofan fresh in her mind, in additional to a sudden bout of heart palpitations......she was suddenly very hungry.

    "Gao!" Erosa exclaimed, dropping the Vitalmancers Urn onto the dining room table with a tad bit more force the Etrina was expecting. For a moment she was sure she heard Grav let out a annoyed grunt. "Erosa home! When lunch!"

    There was an ackward silence, broken only by Erosas stomach growling, bringing forth a surrendering sigh from Etrina.

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

    For all the Alchemical, Magical and Ethereal gifts Etrina had been blessed with over the years....the ability to put anything on an open flame with the attempt to cook was somehow akin to attempting to transmute the Philosophers stone. Trail and Error usually resulting in a disfigured mess.

    "Dinner Ready?" Erosa banged on the table, fork and knife in hand despite absolutely no intention of using them.

    "I too, wish to inquire when I'll be fed today." The Urn sitting on the table spoke as well.

    "Shut up, both of you. It'll be ready when its ready and nobody gave you permission to talk Grav."

    There as a muffle laugh, and even securely locked away the mere idea he was mocking her was pissing the young the mage off.

    With a annoyed grunt, Etrina let the half burnt roast land with a thud on the table....electing a glazed over look from Etrina and an ackward silence from the Urn.

    "Erosa....suggest take out."
    "That sounds like a wonderful idea"

    "SHUT UP GRAV!"

    Another moment of ackward silence followed, and with a sigh she relented. "....fine....I'll order out......just for tonig.."

    A pounding at the door broke Etrinas attention from the dawning realization of being back to paying for takeout. She hadn't been back more then a few hours....so the likelihood of visitors to an area this remote by chance was very unlikely. Yet whoever it was seemed very adamant on getting attention.

    Finally, throwing up her hands in defeat, Etrina left the starving Erosa and Urn to cautiously answer the door.

    Even as she approached the closed door, her new sense for ki allowed her to probe beyond it to the source behind....and the energy she detected was nothing to sneeze at, but certainly nothing she couldn't handle. With a relieved yet cautious expression, etrina pulled the door open. "Hello? What can I do foAGUFF!"

    A form leaped into through the door, small yet surprising strong arms wrapping around her as the two hit the ground with a crash. "E! E!"

    Erosa, attracted by the commotion, pounced out from the dining area to see what was wrong....and came across a very awkward scene playing out. Etrina was pinned to the floor by the most unlikely assailant...yet it was one she and Etrina knew very well.



    The young woman pinning Etrina to the floor was Launia Ballaria, like Etrina she was something of a misbegotten heir to a mage family....though one that left for surprising less dramatic reasons. The Ballaria family had fallen quite far from their peak, almost to the point they were barely recognized by even the lower end mage families. Short of changing her name, leaving her family had been all she could really do to distance herself from such weighted image. Not that her family cared much either way.

    In that shared view from the outside, the two had bonded....with one more then occasionally visiting the other to swap notes.
    ...and cook...sometimes clean.....have long talks about interesting things....perform the mage equivalent to a pajama party......style hair(A almost universally difficult task for a mage for some reason)....

    If Etrina didn't know any better she'd think the girl was a little too diligent towards her.

    "Where have you been! You told me you were going to pick up a delivery and be back in a couple days." Launia shouted in the meek way only she could pull off while gripping Etrina like she had hands of iron. "When you never showed up I was worried sick....I was really worried sick....worried worried sick....worrie."

    *Gah..*cough*...I get it! I'm sorry! Something came up and I got sidetracked...." Launia stared at her with a deadpan expression. "......it was a very important....sidetrack..."

    "You better tell me all about it E!" Launia started, then realized she was pinning her friend to the ground, blushed and hopped back to her feet before helping Etrina up. "Come on...There you go. Lets go get some tea...are you hungry? You picked a really bad time to get distracted you know...."

    "Ugh...bad time....what are you...." Etrina stumbled back to her feet with the girls help.

    "The Counsel is holding a meeting today in preparation for a trial of succession. Its the Chomwallow family..." Launia led her over to a chair, Erosa bouncing around after them, and went over to prepare some tea.

    "Chomwallow?" Etrina shook her head, contemplating the situation. A trail of succession was essential the mage communities way of transferring a families assets in the event that no living heir remaining to claim it. This often included magical research, artifacts and family wealth. While seen as something of a morbid event....the general idea was said assists would be served best with the family most in a position to take advantage of it. Thus...a trail of succession was more of a contest to determine who was best fit to take it. ".....What happened....Did Jason finally blow himself up?"

    "....No......Nobody knows what happened. The counsel didn't give an explanation.....but......it wasn't just the heir. The entire family....they all died, just two nights ago. I had been talking with Jason the night before and I didn't hear anything about anything planned at their estate....the next thing I heard....." Launia turned, carrying the two tea cups slowly to the table. ".......it all happened so suddenly....and they're already talking about setting up the trial. Some people around here can't even wait for a burial before they start bickering for their belongings......and then with you not coming back after a week I...I was really starting to think something awful had happened."

    "Yeah.....I'm sorry. Something really did some up...." Etrina looked down into her teacup quietly. "...sounds like things really got messy around here while I was gone..."

    "....Yeah......Nothing was stolen either, at least nothing they know about....not that it matters. The families are going to pick the remains clean like a bunch of vultures. Jason was a friend of mine....even if he did stink of sulfur all the time, and his eyes were big and bulgy, and he laughed like he had a frog in his throat, and his hair was......" Launia quickly shut herself up. "...Well...he wasn't perfect....but he wasn't a snob like the others either. I won't have his memory be discarded like trash just so a bunch of greedy mages can take what was his and throw the rest away. I'll be entering the trial..."

    Etrina choked on her tea. "...what.....Launia, you couldn't fight your way out of a wet paper bag. These trials usually end up involving mage combat....you don't just sign up and hope for the best."

    "I know....But I have a little something I'm working on....and more importantly I have you to help me!" Despite her childlike, friendly demeanor, Etrina couldn't help but see the manipulative flash in her eyes. The hallmark of a Ballaria, it seemed no matter how far she distanced herself from that family...the apple never fell too far from the tree. Still....she did always make her meals.....insisted on cleaning her clothes too sometimes. She was nothing if not a good friend to her, if a bit clingy. To turn her down now.....

    Perhaps that, and a little curiosity on how well she had improved since the lookout, nudged the mage towards being a bit more accepting to her idea. "Help you.....you want me to sign up for the Trial too?"

    "Yeah....The counsel wouldn't turn down the heir to the Stoltengarde Family. They're really....superstitious. Besides....I'm sure I could definitely pay you back for helping me...."

    "Oh this aught to be good.....what did you have in mind." Etrina chuckled.

    Launia looked around, blushed furiously while twiddling her thumbs. "Well....if you win.....you can have me....."

    Etrina waited patiently for a continuation to that statement....then waiting a little more. "......yes? I can have you.....what...?"

    "Y...You can have me....me......Cook whatever you want for a while month!" Launia quickly backpedaled, then nearly jumpped out of her skin as Erosa slammed the table with both hands, her eyes on fire and drool expelling from her mouth at a quart a second. "EROSA BEAT ANYONE GRAPE WANT!"

  14. #9704
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tami View Post
    She nods shyly, "Same for me. We'll see each other soon." Meagan steps back, her hand refusing to let go of his until she had no choice. Then she playfully smirked slightly, "Don't forget to put a muffin button in Held's ship." she winked then walked outside, pausing for a moment to wave, before leaving the building.

    Though it was getting late, she decided to walk a little before the long flight back to the Lookout.

    He waves back and winks before entering CC.

    “Adam, where are you?” He comms the Android.
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  15. #9705
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    Default Rewind: Kenshiko

    Quote Originally Posted by grampagen View Post
    A looming atmosphere of heavy, sinking dread would meet the pomp of his stride fell. The blink and dull glow of the transport's panel instruments served only to push the shadows forward in that dark place, a thick quiet broken only by the footfalls and the scent of old blood.

    "You."

    The voice rang out behind Held, low, seething, bitter. The fallen Tiger's shape was hidden where she sat curled against the wall, beside the unmoving black silhouette pooled on the seat next to her. Under her crimson tresses Kenshiko beheld the Nevadian as he stepped into her territory. She raised her right hand idly toward him and pressed her thumb inward, breaking the silence with the dull thud of metal-on-metal. Suspended between her fingers were two capsules, at her side she was seated by many more.

    "Looking for something?"
    Behind him, in the confines of the ship, the tiger spoke, her growling, deep, voice carrying something the Nevadian had not heard directed at him in quite some time.

    Hate.

    "Me." Held confirmed, turning to the voice that addressed him from the darkness, Peering through it as if to stalk him. Even know, captured and restrained as she was, beaten within an inch of her life, Held felt a very real concern for his safety.

    Which, should have been expected. There was little doubt in his mind, that were she able to muster the strength, she would have tried to rend his head from his shoulders.

    His eyes glanced away from hers, eying the familiar capsules in her hand, which housed the treasure which he had fastidiously secured at length during the aftermath of combat. Was this some attempt of taunting him, the constant clacking of metal? Or was this perhaps the only way she had left to pass the time until judgement fell upon her?

    Whatever feelings the Nevadian had, his poise betrayed none of it, impassively looking upon his fallen opponent.

    The tension was immense enough to choke the very air out of the room. Held, if nothing else, was skilled in the subtle art of attempting to relive tension.

    "I was hoping you'd be asleep." He said with a weary sigh, "So much for this going smoothly."

    I should have just waited for Jinzi.

    "I have accounting to do. And, well, I can't really count what isn't before me...." He glanced at the pyramid of capsules to the side of Kenshiko, obscured by the darkness.

    "So, here I am."

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