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  1. #3196
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    Quote Originally Posted by Yun Lao View Post
    In the face of uncertainty, she readied her Tentsukuroibō, only a mental gesture away from bringing forth the naginata blade hidden in the staff. Despite this, it seemed the apparent ghost wasn't hostile, not yet.

    "Were you expecting guests?" Shōchū asked, answering a question with a question hoping to glean some answers with the spirit's response.
    Quote Originally Posted by grampagen View Post
    There was something way the luminous form spoke, the mimicry carried upon its uncanny intonation that sent Zaofan's bleary mind a long distance away from the ice and stone. The snowstorm's howl, he was deaf to it; he only heard...her?

    Whatever she was, with a clarity that seemed to cut clean across the distance.

    "Indeed it is! I mean yes! We're alive!," he stammered. "And uh...well, in a manner of speaking I guess were are ghosts- Guests! I meant guests! Ha-ha-ha!"
    The spirit, for lack of information, regarding their words quietly.

    As Zaofan once more reaffirmed who they were, guests, the figure tilted her head.....and though the cook could not see it through the visible blur that came with her ethereal form, he could sense something akin to growing happiness. The being suddenly glided forward, emitting an child-like cry, and wrapped its ethereal arms around Zaofan. There was a tingling sensation...but beyond that he could feel the mass no more then if a regular child were hugging him.

    "Finally someone is here!" The ghost cried softly. "Its been so long.....Its been so long....Thank you....Thank you...."

    A slow, soft feeling fell upon Shochu's shoulder, and quickly grew quite warm upon contact.

    Apparently, Zaofan needed to get a grip on something.

    "Sh-she's looking at me," Zaofan said, a high, strained whisper peeking through lips pressed in an awkward, thin smile.

    Adjacent to the two, heavy footsteps pressed forward, crunching through the snow.

    "We're headed to the mountain," Ochazuke said curtly.

    "I think she can hear you, Ocha." He looked over his shoulder at the martial chef. His eyes caught the light of Erosa's fire for a moment before they moved back to the shimmer woman amid the ruins.

    "We're headed to the mountain," he repeated, "because there is a matter of great peril we must attend to. But if these are your lands, surely you must understand."

    As he spoke, his subtle sense brushed against her very form, as he attempted to discern her nature with Kyokushin Keihatsu. This etheric body...is there a connection with what lies beneath?

    The newcomer, Shochu, seemed to have her bearings about her. Perhaps she too can see a little more than is apparent. And Zaofan, though he shivered like the last leaves on the balding trees, he knew would continue to press forward if it came down to it.

    "And surely we have not been the only travelers to come through here."
    Slowly, through his senses and skill, Ochazuke began to unravel something of the being that was now attached at Zaofans hip.

    It was a ghost, there was no proper ki in her being. Rather....she was formed more from coalesced magic. The same sort found to a much greater effect in Erosa. Etrina had referred to it on countless occasions...magic that could bind conceptual beings into physical manifestations. The being before them was a Familiar, or at least shared something in common with familiars....only a mage would know for sure.

    She shared nothing in common with the energies that flowed around her...no the corruption in the grounds, which seemed to make her something of an oddity.

    Clearly this fact has not been lost to Erosa...but the Id was somewhat preoccupied with throwing territorial glares and hissing at the ghost to comment.

    "Going to the mountain? But you just got here." The ghost looked to him now, arms still around Zaofan. "Stay awhile....oh dear the place is such a mess.....Hang on."

    The girl releases Zaofan, floats back, extends her arms and briefly channels some sort of spell before.....something quite bizarre takes place.

    Firstly Ochazuke, who had been observing via his senses, felt an extraordinary amount of magic suddenly spill forth from the girls form.

    Secondly, Zaofan, Shōchū, Ochazuke and Erosa would all be momentarily blinded by the intense light of as etherial light similar to her own filled in the space around them...filling in the gaps in the wall, forming complex shapes and finally taking on contextual shape.



    "Ok...much better." The ghost clapped her ethereal hands. "These old places are never in a condition to receive guests......eehh." The ghost quickly realized the place where the group had started their fire had been directly under the original position of the table and quickly banished it with a hand wave. "Welcome to Avalon, Honored guests. I'm Morgan."

  2. #3197
    Astonishing Member KingofPie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MrSandman View Post


    "Ok...much better." The ghost clapped her ethereal hands. "These old places are never in a condition to receive guests......eehh." The ghost quickly realized the place where the group had started their fire had been directly under the original position of the table and quickly banished it with a hand wave. "Welcome to Avalon, Honored guests. I'm Morgan."
    If the sight before them did not draw their attention, none would notice the miniscule chief of the Galaxy Police had hitched a ride on Shōchū's shoulders, clapping his tiny chopstick hands when the room was shaped before them all.

  3. #3198
    The Tentacle God Cthulhu_of_R'lyeh's Avatar
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    Default Nothing Gold Can Stay, Epilogue

    When the Eldest returned with what remained of Inanna in tow, the rest of the Archon simply nodded knowingly, and expressed joy in her return -- or arrival, as it were -- with open arms as though they did not understand what precisely had happened; they understood where she had been. Something the the woman, was thankful for simply for the fact that there was so much work left to do; in fully excising the cancerous ideology that had been her prison before she would consider addressing who she was ... or even considering a return to the Universe she left behind.

    Of course, the matter of 'time' remained an issue.

    How she might extend what time she had to find herself -- and the means she might employ to do so -- while consulting with the Archon who came to visit their new 'sibling'; became her focus then. So by the time she had healed fully, the beginnings of an idea were rattling around in her mind and all she really needed to do was detail it to the Eldest and ask her permission. That her plan was a rather simple one played to her favor in the end, as after only a short conference with its other siblings the Archon of Criostalach happily granted Inanna's request; and with permission now to do as she willed it the golden-eyed woman returned to the Crystal Hollow.

    A place that, after being warded with magic -- a latticework of runes pertaining to blood, and gravity -- and obscured from all sense; Inanna simply disappeared inside of ... for a full solar year. So it came as no small surprise, when one day the golden-eyed woman simply stepped out of thin air in front of the Archon of Criostalach; and began to speak as if not but a few days had passed.

    "Hello, Criostalach."

    "Hello ... Inanna." The Eldest responded, crystalline eyebrow raised curiously. "I take it you have recovered sufficiently ?"

    The woman nodded, before offering the Archon a smile. "I have I think, thank you. Or at the very least, I've done all I could inside the Hollow." Inanna paused, before holding up her hand and staring at it. "So many new developments ..." trailing off for a little while, Inanna seemed to be considering something before she seemingly snapped out of it, eyes widening slightly and a look of embarrassment coloring her features before she looked back at the Eldest.

    "Apologies it has ... been quite some time for me." Scratching the back of her head, the golden-eyed woman then asked something that for the second time in as many moments, surprised the Archon. "So how have things been here ? ..." and in the moments that followed, the Archon explained to her how the planet was healing well, and that Hellenia was too; in addition to how the Eleven Tribes flourished. All of which gave Inanna no small amount of joy, considering the long years they had suffered.

    When the time came however, for the two to part ways -- Inanna expressing that there was much yet for her to do -- the Archon of Criostalach nodded, and Inanna assumed the twinkling sound that emanated from the Archon was perhaps a sigh of sadness. "Then all I can do is wish you a safe journey and hope that you will return." it said. "For as much as we enjoyed the visits from your friends," which caused Inanna to quirk an eyebrow, "it would be nice to see our new sibling, from time to time."

    Hearing that ... how they considered her to be a 'sibling', Inanna could only reach out gently to place a comforting hand on the Archon's shoulder.

    "I'm honored to be considered such ... but you need not worry. I've grown quite fond of it here you know, and of you and your kindness despite my ... imperfections," she said warmly. "Not to mention I've grown quite fond of the place ... feels like home in a way, and that's a wonderful thing to have." Pulling away from her 'sibling' then, Inanna unfurled her wings -- something she wore now quite openly, over Ishtar's previous concealment of them -- and offered the Eldest a small wave.

    "For now though, I've a promise to keep. So I'll just say ..."

    With a flap of her wings, the golden-eyed woman lifted off the ground; and a moment later she disappeared with, "See you soon, Crio; and tell Lasair he is no longer the Youngest."




    Vocado

    When Inanna returned to the Universe proper, Sarada had little warning.

    One moment there was nothing, the connection that had once been shared by herself and Ishtar still as dead as the day she left; and the next it was simply ... there. The connection simply kicking back on as if she had never left, save for the fact that what she felt on the other side was not at all what she might have expected. Though what perhaps was more surprising, was when strange-looking -- if not familiar -- woman that felt like her lover, simply ... appeared. Only to, obviously now very, very confused ask.

    "Parsley ? Where is Sarada ?"
    "... and when the Golden Toad started to sing, there was no turning back." - grampagen (Ochazuke)

    "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn."

  4. #3199
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    The aftermath of Sarada and Parsley switching bodies was immediate and carried with it deep repercussions. For one, no one outside of a chosen few actually knew or understood what exactly happened to them. For those that watched the fight and the moment in question, it merely seemed that Letchee hit them both with a disorienting attack that left them vulnerable to Daroga sneak attack. To every other Saiyan, the Queen and the Princess were both perfectly fine.

    That in and of itself posed a series of very serious issues. For one, Parsley suddenly acting as if she was the queen wasn't going to do. Not at all. This required some creativity and some deception.

    Sarada wasn't a liar, but she had no choice. If she was going to keep the peace, Parsley was going to have to act like her in order to ensure no one found out this happened. The only ones who were to know were the doctors, the Council, and Avoca. And Ishtar when she returned.

    “This is the worst.” Sarada rubbed her sore chest. “Why are they always hungry?”

    “Was that a serious question?” her sister replied dryly. She sighed through her nose. “I don't know how you can stand having all this hair. It gets everywhere.”

    “I don't know how you can stand having boobs this small.”

    “...what was that?”

    Maiz walked into the council room and sat down beside Sarada. She was still sitting in her usual seat. She may not have been in her body, but she was still calling the shots. “Okay, the public is still ignorant about what happened.” She looked at Parsley. “You'll have to say something soon. They need to know what happened and why we got attacked the other day.”

    It had been two days since Daroga and Letchee attacked. They left without killing anyone, which left quite a few people confused. The Queen needed to make a statement explaining things, which fell to Parsley.

    The constantly emphasized importance of all this made her nervous. Few people knew Sarada's ticks and idiosyncrasies better than her, but... I suppose this is what I wanted. I'm finally Queen, in a sense. It felt cheap and undeserved.

    On the plus side, she and Avoca got to sleep in the master bedroom, which was twice the size of her own. Nothing happened, but at least the bed was nice and comfortable. Oddly, all of the furniture was stain-proof and unbreakable. Parsley knew why, but would have rather not thought about it too hard.

    The next day, she gave her speech. Getting Sarada's speech patterns was one thing, narrowing down her speech to the bare basics because Sarada wasn't an analytical person outside of combat – and barely was even then – was another. Parsley tended to think about every possible angle and avenue of thought when considering much of anything. Sarada didn't.

    When she stepped out onto the balcony overlooking the massive crowd that was filled mostly of news media, she felt butterflies in her stomach. She wasn't used to speaking in front of many people, let along hundreds or even thousands. Not to mention the millions that were watching from home.

    She breathed in to calm her nerves.

    “You got this,” Sarada whispered before falling back behind the curtain.

    Okay. Here we go. Short and sweet. She had practiced. She was as ready as she was going to be. “Loyal subjects of the Saiyan Empire. You are no doubt aware of the enemy attack that occurred here on Vocado a few days ago. Many of you present heard their reasons for attacking – to gain our measure ahead of another attack that is due in one year. Know that I, Princess Parsley, and the other strongest members of our race will be ready to face this new foe. Over the next few weeks, we'll be releasing an evacuation plan, just in case. I...er, uh...”

    She was cut off by a cascading wave of boos and jeers.

    “Uh... I'm sorry. That's what I was advised.” That lame attempt to backtrack and save face was how she ended her speech. She left the balcony in a hurry.

    Sarada had to be stopped from strangling her. “Evacuation plan?” she seethed.

    “It's smart,” Parsley reasoned.

    “It's stupid. You know you're talking to a crowd of Saiyans, rights? You know we don't run away from anything. What the hell is wrong with you?!”

    She was stunned. She knew that Sarada would have an issue with this, possibly jeer her, but this? This strong reaction was unexpected. “I...I didn't...”

    “It's fine,” Maiz said. “We'll just say I came up with the idea. It's not a bad one, counterculture aside.”

    That was fine, but Sarada was still irritated. She stormed off without saying more.

    “She's spent the better part of two years fighting for their respect,” Maiz explained. “Some of them thought she was inexperienced and only a mouthpiece for the rest of us.”

    And Parsley came out with that, an evacuation plan that the council told her to initiate. She closed her eyes and rubbed her head. “I didn't know.”

    “I know.”

    Pretending to be Queen was going to be harder than she thought. Not only did she have to fool the entire Empire, but she had to do it in a way that preserved the respect Sarada fought so hard to earn.

    In the weeks and months to follow, Parsley was better able to get the hang of it. She didn't have to make many public appearances, thankfully. When she did, she prepared more thoroughly. In fact, Sarada was the one preparing the speeches, and Parsley simply memorized what she came up with. It went much better, and the people just assumed that her first speech was just an overreaction and moved on.

    There was another, and possibly even bigger issue, that Sarada and Parsley needed to deal with – the matter of their techniques. They were specifically suited to their fighting styles. Sarada's were very direct and simple, while Parsley's were tied to her specific talents. Anti-magic was beyond Sarada, as was Observational Focus. She was too instinctual and couldn't focus her attention to the minute degree Parsley could. On the other hand, Parsley thought over every move she made and considered all the consequences and possible counters. Thus, she was unable to utilize Peerless Instinct. She thought too much.

    The remaining abilities were just a matter of training and getting used to their new bodies. They spent an hour each day training in the field Avoca and Sarada trained in, honing their proficiency with their new techniques. The first step was transforming in Super Saiyans. Once that was squared away, they focused on everything else.

    Once a month, they spent an entire day in Vaikuntha, to which they both had keys. The constant healing made it so they could do full out and fight to the best of their abilities without worry about hurting each other. The benefits were two-fold. Not only did they become adequate in the other's powers, they became a better, more fluid team. Learning how the other's techniques operated on a personal level meant they knew exactly how to mesh and meld them together into new dual techs.

    And outside of the frustration and some embarrassing moments, Sarada and Parsley grew closer together. This mishap wasn't all bad.

    Avoca, on the other hand, disagreed thoroughly. Not being able to so much as kiss her own wife without threatening to lapse back to the time when she and Sarada were lovers was a heinous punishment for a crime she never committed. The worst part?

    They were no closer to finding a means of reversing the body swap than they were when it happened.

  5. #3200
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    One day, Sarada was in the garden. Parsley was giving an interview about the progress of the Meat Market reconstruction and the status of the unofficial colony on Tabaga. She looked up at the sky, littered with twinkling stars and the half-moon. I wonder where you are, love.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cthulhu_of_R'lyeh View Post
    Vocado

    When Inanna returned to the Universe proper, Sarada had little warning.

    One moment there was nothing, the connection that had once been shared by herself and Ishtar still as dead as the day she left; and the next it was simply ... there. The connection simply kicking back on as if she had never left, save for the fact that what she felt on the other side was not at all what she might have expected. Though what perhaps was more surprising, was when strange-looking -- if not familiar -- woman that felt like her lover, simply ... appeared. Only to, obviously now very, very confused ask.

    "Parsley ? Where is Sarada ?"
    Sarada let out a surprised yelp and fell off the bench she had been sitting on. “What the hell?” The woman who suddenly appeared out of nowhere felt familiar. It felt like Ishtar, yet it looked nothing like her. The skin color was off, the horns were different, she was about a foot and a half taller, and...

    Sarada slowly rose to her feet, eyes narrowed as she beheld this new woman. “Ishtar?” She circled around her, letting her gaze carefully analyze this new figure. It was a damn good figure, too. She felt a stirring within her, a carnal desire that she had been ignoring for the longest time.

    She called her Parsley and asked about her. Could it be? But why does she look like this? Where the hell has she been? Her eyes widened a touch. “It is you, isn't it?” She smiled and gave the much taller woman a hug. There was a near two foot height difference between the two of them, meaning that a hug pushed Sarada face right Ishtar's new cleavage. She let her head rest there, nestled comfortable within her love's plush bosom. “I'm so glad your back, love.”

    Oh, wait a second.

    “Ah, shit, I forgot. I, uh, I'm actually Sarada. To make a long story short, we were attacked some time ago by two agents of a Frost Demon named Tundra. He body-swapped Parsley and me. We haven't been able to turn ourselves back.” She tapped her wrist and pulled up the feed of Parsley's interview to show that her sister was in fact inhabiting her body.

    She sighed and sat down. “Simple things like taking a shower have been awkward, and don't me started on having to constantly feed those two babies.” The maternal feelings she had gained from that as a result were unexpected, but she wasn't going to fight them. If anything, that aspect of this endeavor had been enough to prepare her for when she and Ishtar had their child. Which, sadly, would have already happened had everything gone differently.

    She smiled softly and patted the bench. “You seem in much better spirits. Tell me everything.”

  6. #3201
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bruceleegreyhulk View Post
    Back at the Lookout, Praxat is with Blizzar and Nadila when Althena walks by them. "Althena, Qaztoh has been taking by pirates. Pirates who have been going around kidnapping children. I, Held, Blizzar, and this teenage girl Nadila are going after them," Praxat said.

    Althena shows anger for the first time as her skin turns red, and she balls up her right fist." Kidnapping children, such an act is despicable!" Althena said.

    Back onboard the Black Diamond. Sonata enters the engine room and grabs Qaztoh. He then proceeds to slam her into a wall." You, F#$king bitch," Sonata said.

    " Cause of you. I have Marsrito, and whoever else that other massive power is on my ass. I took you, and the other kids in. I found you lost in the middle of space and gave you a home," Sonata said.

    "I give you specific orders to turn on the hyperdrive and the cloaking defense system. Instead, you f#$king disobey my orders!" Sonata said.

    Sonata smacks Qaztoh, and knocks her to the ground." I'm through taking orders from you. So go ahead hit me, it won't make a difference. It's already over for you," Qaztoh said.

    Marsrito is mopping the floor with a bunch of pirates, but strangely enough, he leaves most of them alone." You pirates sicken me. Kidnapping children and force them to be a part of your crew," Marsrito said.

    " You have no honor!" Marsrito said.

    While searching for his son Marsrito is confront by Pyrrhos. " Stop right there I can't allow you to harm anyone board this ship," Pyrrhos said.

    Marsrito gives Pyrrhos and an icy cold stare." You are Pyrrhos correct?" You claim to be a warrior of justice, and yet you going around kidnapping children," Marsrito said.

    " Where is the honor in that? There is none, so don't you dare call yourself a warrior of justice! You're not but scum!" Marsrito said.

    Pyrrhos attacks Marasito with everything he has. Marasito isn't phased and just stands there quietly. Pyrrhos then pulls out his strongest attack Super Nova.

    An attack in which Pyrrhos covers the entire area in an immense wave of blue fire that spreads in every direction." This is my strongest attack. No matter how tough you are. you still need to breathe," Pyrrhos said.

    " So I'm going to burn away all your oxygen," Pyrrhos said.



    However, to Pyrrhos shock and horror. Marasito grabs him by the face through the blue flames. " You're puny flames won't save you from my wrath pirate. Nothing will," Marasito said.

    Marasito punches Pyrrhos so hard that he goes flying through several walls. Ultimately flying pass Sarada, and smashing into a room.

    Pyrrhos lays there and coughs up blood. Marasito then appears before Pyrrhos and drags him out of the room. " Now talk. Where is your captain keeping my son, Marasito said.

    Meanwhile, in the engine room. Qaztoh grabs her cell phone as Sonata approaches her. She uses her access to the ship's mainframe. To unlock the door to the room that children who didn't encounter Marasito were bring kept in.

    " Sonata smacks Qaztoh" What was that. What in the hell did you do?" Sonata said.

    " That was me freeing the rest of the children aboard this ship. Also, I come to a conclusion. That I was never lost in space," Qaztoh said.

    " You attack my ship three years ago, and abducted me!" Qaztoh said.

    Sonata grabs Qaztoh and pins her to a wall." I didn't abduct you. I saved you, and the rest of the children. I gave you a purpose, I made you my engineer, " Sonata said.

    Qaztoh spits in Sonata's face." My purpose isn't to be your f@#king engineer. It's to liberate my race and become a Queen! That is my purpose," Qaztoh said.
    Sarada stopped just in time to miss one of the pirates flying through the hallway, with some guy with a ridiculous mustache following after him. Huh. So that the big power I felt before. I'll let him deal with whoever that was.

    She felt the children were nearby and quickly blitzed through the ship until she found them. It looked like their cells had already been opened. Somehow. "Hey," she called out, "my name is Queen Sarada of the Saiyan race. I heard you lot had been kidnapped and I'm here to rescue you." She opened a portal to Vocado. "Step through that portal to safety. I'll make sure you all get sent back to your homes as soon as possible."

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    Quote Originally Posted by bruceleegreyhulk View Post
    Back at the Lookout, Praxat is with Blizzar and Nadila when Althena walks by them. "Althena, Qaztoh has been taking by pirates. Pirates who have been going around kidnapping children. I, Held, Blizzar, and this teenage girl Nadila are going after them," Praxat said.

    Althena shows anger for the first time as her skin turns red, and she balls up her right fist." Kidnapping children, such an act is despicable!" Althena said.
    "Easy now." Held responded as he turned the corner, Golden Spear in hand. He wore a grey bodysuit made for space exploration, similar to the one he wore during the raid on Midori's compound. "Save it for the mission."

    Still, she's not wrong....It's hardly the most endearing form of criminal activity.

    "Then again..." He placed his offhand on his chin thoughtfully, "Some people get so worked up during the mission if they don't vent, that it actually throws off their game...."

    He shrugged. "To each his own, I suppose."

    In anycase, they must be absolutely prolific, if that bounty on their heads is to be believed...Either that, or they royally pissed someone off...I should go over the info I have during the trip, but....Eh. With us four, it should be a simple matter to resolve, I suppose.

    "In any case, not to spoil the mood with business talk, but....What's the split on this again?"

    The Nevadian turned to Blizzar, smiling slightly, "I'll assume you'll pass on the bounty, as all you need is the satisfaction of a job well done, eh?"

  8. #3203
    The Tentacle God Cthulhu_of_R'lyeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sub-Zero MKA View Post
    Sarada let out a surprised yelp and fell off the bench she had been sitting on. “What the hell?” The woman who suddenly appeared out of nowhere felt familiar. It felt like Ishtar, yet it looked nothing like her. The skin color was off, the horns were different, she was about a foot and a half taller, and...

    Sarada slowly rose to her feet, eyes narrowed as she beheld this new woman. “Ishtar?” She circled around her, letting her gaze carefully analyze this new figure. It was a damn good figure, too. She felt a stirring within her, a carnal desire that she had been ignoring for the longest time.

    She called her Parsley and asked about her. Could it be? But why does she look like this? Where the hell has she been? Her eyes widened a touch. “It is you, isn't it?” She smiled and gave the much taller woman a hug. There was a near two foot height difference between the two of them, meaning that a hug pushed Sarada face right Ishtar's new cleavage. She let her head rest there, nestled comfortable within her love's plush bosom. “I'm so glad your back, love.”

    Oh, wait a second.

    “Ah, shit, I forgot. I, uh, I'm actually Sarada. To make a long story short, we were attacked some time ago by two agents of a Frost Demon named Tundra. He body-swapped Parsley and me. We haven't been able to turn ourselves back.” She tapped her wrist and pulled up the feed of Parsley's interview to show that her sister was in fact inhabiting her body.

    She sighed and sat down. “Simple things like taking a shower have been awkward, and don't me started on having to constantly feed those two babies.” The maternal feelings she had gained from that as a result were unexpected, but she wasn't going to fight them. If anything, that aspect of this endeavor had been enough to prepare her for when she and Ishtar had their child. Which, sadly, would have already happened had everything gone differently.

    She smiled softly and patted the bench. “You seem in much better spirits. Tell me everything.”
    When Parsley cleared the distance between them and buried her face in bosom; Inanna was ... surprised to say the least; and it didn't help at all that the woman seemed in possession of Sarada's soul. Or at the very least a fragment of it.

    "I ... uh. Hello ?" The woman said, patting the Saiyan on the back. "I can't say I was expecting this from you." Though when the Saiyan came up for air, and managed to explain what had happened, succinctly, it made ... about as much sense as before; but her confusion at the very least was lessened slightly.

    "I suppose that's hardly the strangest thing I've experienced in the pas-" the woman started to say before trailing off. How long had it been, exactly ? One year on the outside, certainly -- or at the very least within Vaikuntha -- and yet ... "Oh. I lost count. Ah ... well." A few hundred or more, it didn't much matter in the end. Functional immortality did have its uses. As far as it went with Sarada and her curious predicament though, Inanna tried to think of something cheerful to say. "The uh ... breast-feeding children thing sounds, awkward ... though," she said to change the subject.

    "At ... at least you ended up in a nice body ?"

    Immediately after saying it however, Inanna realized she wasn't quite sure that was the best thing to say ? Or at the very least not as delicate as she might've liked. Ah ... Nice job, me. At least it made it obvious, she needed time to get used to other people, again. Thankfully though, it was -- or at least seemed to be Sarada -- so she had a bit less to worry over; and it seemed that more than anything her Saiyan wished to know where she'd been. So with a cautious smile, and a quick nod the Oni did as she sat down beside her.

    "So ... where to start ?"

    Pausing a moment to consider it, Inanna decided that it was best to gloss over the breakdown that happened once she touched down on Tatenen, simply expressing that it was far worse than she'd let on before leaving; but from there the explanation was rather ... well, not at all straightforward:

    "The Archon of Criostalach ... the strongest one took me to a place they called the 'Crystal Hollow'." Inanna said, "and sparing you the uh, 'boring shit' as I remember you saying; the properties of the cave allowed me to confront myself directly." Though that ... wasn't quite right. "Er ... it calmed me down, the cave. To the point where everything was more manageable and I could reason with myself." That's better. "From there I ... learned some things that were unpleasant and it didn't sit well. We came to blows." It was at this point Inanna had to pause, and explain just how that happened -- by simply saying that the cave was very weird, and did for her what it had done for the other Archon thousands of years ago -- before continuing.

    "I ... tried to reason with her I ... Ishtar; but she was too far gone." She said, pausing frequently as she tried to word it as best she could, and as clearly as she could. "Zurvan, he ... made her. Me ? Ishtar." Inanna repeated. "In the end she couldn't handle that, and end it killed ... that part of me."

    Her only regret.

    Clapping her hands together to signify a shift in tone then, Inanna proceeded to explain what happened from there.

    "I was ... in bad shape afterwards. Took time to heal, and figure out what I still needed to do before I could come back; and I figured out that if I made my own Room of Spirit and Time I could take as long as I needed -- relatively speaking -- and go from there." It was a rather ingenious solution if she did say so herself. "It was ... perhaps too strong a place, a day was far longer than a year; and I ... spent a good year in there so." At least a handful of centuries. "In that time though I got a lot done. First of all was figuring out who I was ... am, without Ishtar." She said then, before realizing how that sounded.

    "I mean ... I'm still Ishtar ? I'm just ... the Ishtar before Zurvan; and most of that me was already gone. Would have been, fully if I'd have ... you know. If that makes sense."

    Probably not but it did take her a rather long time to figure it out herself. It would be about this time too, that Sarada would notice that her love was far less formal than she used to be. Contractions being used with a frequency that had been, before, completely unheard of and she seemed to simply be enjoying the conversation for what it was in that moment ... far less concerned with wording.

    "In any case. After I sorted that, I realized I could choose now ... truly choose. What aspects I wanted to keep, and who I wanted to be from there. So I decided to change things up a bit. Both internally, and externally," she gestured at her new body. "So I took that DNA from those vials I drank and helped it along a little. A tad more demonic than I thought it'd be but all the same ... rather pleased with it.

    "Other than that though, I also took the time to strip away everything Zurvan taught me." She said then, happily. "Decided I would not keep what had been used to shape me in his image. Though I did keep a few things I picked up while flitting from world to world; after making some changes to them." Though the difference between what she'd kept and what she'd lost was rather sizable all the same. "So ... that's about it, really ?"

    Oh. Right, there was that one thing she had been otherwise avoiding until now.

    "Oh ! I uh ... almost forgot. My name wasn't ever really Ishtar. I mean it was but ... uh." Here we go ...

    "My true name is Inanna." Please don't be mad ...
    "... and when the Golden Toad started to sing, there was no turning back." - grampagen (Ochazuke)

    "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn."

  9. #3204
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    Sarada listened with rapt attention when Ishtar recounted her trials over the last year and change. The breakdown was far worse than either of them thought; or worse than she thought and Ishtar had let on. Either way, it was bad. So bad that she had to return to those elemental things on Tatenen. The crystal one took her to some place called the Crystal Hollow -- she supposed that was fitting.

    What transpired there was confusing. It almost sounded like she was saying that it calmed her down, but one part of her was too hype and they had to come to blows to calm that part down. That part wasn't able to cope with the lies Zurvan and Sihn led her along with and controlled her like a puppet with, so the more reasonable side had to beat some sense into her. Just like Sarada herself tried to do before. And just like when Sarada tried, it didn't work. That part of Ishtar ended up dying unable to come to terms with her life being played out like a script from the absolute beginning.

    Sarada frowned. While she was glad that Ishtar was able to rid herself of all the toxicity that breakdown created and shed the lies and strings Zurvan played her with, this woman wasn't the same Ishtar she had fallen in love with. The way she talked was far more casual than she was used to. The use of contractions threw her off almost immediately. The way she spoke, casual with nearly no hint of the formality she spoke with before... it was like she was enjoying talking just for the sake of it. She sounded like, well, Sarada herself. All of that combined with the startling change in appearance made it feel like she was speaking with a completely different person.

    But, she was Ishtar. She was Ishtar. The way this conversation was trended made her believe she was going to reveal that she was in fact someone knew, that the Oni she knew before was now dead, died in that Crystal Hollow. Before she could speak, there was one last thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by Cthulhu_of_R'lyeh View Post
    "Oh ! I uh ... almost forgot. My name wasn't ever really Ishtar. I mean it was but ... uh." Here we go ...

    "My true name is Inanna." Please don't be mad ...
    Her reaction was a little delayed. She stared at Ish...Inanna?

    All this time, in the years they had known and loved each other, they had both been knowing her by the wrong name? Her entire life, she had been known by the wrong name? Was this Zurvan's doing?

    Why?

    How could he do this to his own "daughter"?

    "Inanna." The name rolled of her tongue. She spoke it softly over and over, getting a feel for it. It was a nice name, for sure. But, she was so used to s̶c̶r̶e̶a̶m̶i̶n̶g̶ saying Ishtar that she kept defaulting to that in her head. "This is going to take some getting used to. But, I will, because you deserve to everyone call you by your real name." She smiled and touched her cheek. "So, now that you're finally free, how do you feel?" There was another question she wanted to ask. "And what will you do when you see him again?" Him, of course, being Zurvan.

    Because she knew what she was going to do: punch him in the face. She was pretty sure it wouldn't do any damage, but it would make her feel better. And she didn't know who this Sihn guy was -- she had only heard of him with Ish... Inanna spoke about him -- but he was getting a face punch, too, when they finally did meet.

    "You look so beautiful. Even better than before."

  10. #3205
    Astonishing Member KingofPie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bruceleegreyhulk View Post
    Back at the Lookout, Praxat is with Blizzar and Nadila when Althena walks by them. "Althena, Qaztoh has been taking by pirates. Pirates who have been going around kidnapping children. I, Held, Blizzar, and this teenage girl Nadila are going after them," Praxat said.

    Althena shows anger for the first time as her skin turns red, and she balls up her right fist." Kidnapping children, such an act is despicable!" Althena said.
    "Indeed," Blizzar added.
    Quote Originally Posted by Miburo View Post
    "Easy now." Held responded as he turned the corner, Golden Spear in hand. He wore a grey bodysuit made for space exploration, similar to the one he wore during the raid on Midori's compound. "Save it for the mission."

    Still, she's not wrong....It's hardly the most endearing form of criminal activity.

    "Then again..." He placed his offhand on his chin thoughtfully, "Some people get so worked up during the mission if they don't vent, that it actually throws off their game...."

    He shrugged. "To each his own, I suppose."

    In anycase, they must be absolutely prolific, if that bounty on their heads is to be believed...Either that, or they royally pissed someone off...I should go over the info I have during the trip, but....Eh. With us four, it should be a simple matter to resolve, I suppose.

    "In any case, not to spoil the mood with business talk, but....What's the split on this again?"
    "That will be discussed later," Blizzar stated matter-of-factly.
    The Nevadian turned to Blizzar, smiling slightly, "I'll assume you'll pass on the bounty, as all you need is the satisfaction of a job well done, eh?"
    "That will also be discussed later," he assured Held. "Shouldn't we get a move on in any case?" He inquired to those helming this mission.

  11. #3206

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sub-Zero MKA View Post
    Sarada stopped just in time to miss one of the pirates flying through the hallway, with some guy with a ridiculous mustache following after him. Huh. So that the big power I felt before. I'll let him deal with whoever that was.

    She felt the children were nearby and quickly blitzed through the ship until she found them. It looked like their cells had already been opened. Somehow. "Hey," she called out, "my name is Queen Sarada of the Saiyan race. I heard you lot had been kidnapped and I'm here to rescue you." She opened a portal to Vocado. "Step through that portal to safety. I'll make sure you all get sent back to your homes as soon as possible."

    Children would see a variety of children from different races range from 12 to 17 years old. The children who have been there the longest have a Pheonix symbol branded on their right shoulders. It's the same symbol that's on Qaztoh's right shoulder.

    A teenage tiger girl walks out. The tiger girl looks at Sarada ." Thank you, now I can finally go home and get away from that lunatic Sonata," the tiger girl said with a stoic expression on he face.


    The tiger girl walks through the portal. However, before any more children walk through the portal. Fang the wolf humanoid shows up with a bunch of weapons deck in armor. " You lot are not going anywhere," Fang said.

    " Leaving is insubordination! Dammit, that blast Toadian. First, she takes over the entire ship's mainframe. Then she takes over the ship's communications," Fang said.

    " Locks me out of the flight terminal, and now she's unlocked the F@#king cell doors," Fang said in an angry tone.

    Suddenly Sarada would find herself in a nightmarish world. in this nightmarish world, It seems like Fang's power level gets a massive power boost. However, there's something odd about it.

    Fang starts to attack Sarada with his weaponry. The weapons he attacks Sarada with seem a lot more powerful than they should be. Something wasn't right.

  12. #3207

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    Quote Originally Posted by KingofPie View Post
    "Indeed," Blizzar added.


    "That will be discussed later," Blizzar stated matter-of-factly.


    "That will also be discussed later," he assured Held. "Shouldn't we get a move on in any case?" He inquired to those helming this mission.
    Nadila looks at Held." Well, when I was with them. Stratovarius Buccaneers were plundering from crime families and big powerful corporations. So yeah, I say they probably a royally pissed bunch of them off. " Nadila said.

  13. #3208
    Lin Kuei Grandmaster Sub-Zero MKA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bruceleegreyhulk View Post
    Children would see a variety of children from different races range from 12 to 17 years old. The children who have been there the longest have a Pheonix symbol branded on their right shoulders. It's the same symbol that's on Qaztoh's right shoulder.

    A teenage tiger girl walks out. The tiger girl looks at Sarada ." Thank you, now I can finally go home and get away from that lunatic Sonata," the tiger girl said with a stoic expression on he face.


    The tiger girl walks through the portal. However, before any more children walk through the portal. Fang the wolf humanoid shows up with a bunch of weapons deck in armor. " You lot are not going anywhere," Fang said.

    " Leaving is insubordination! Dammit, that blast Toadian. First, she takes over the entire ship's mainframe. Then she takes over the ship's communications," Fang said.

    " Locks me out of the flight terminal, and now she's unlocked the F@#king cell doors," Fang said in an angry tone.

    Suddenly Sarada would find herself in a nightmarish world. in this nightmarish world, It seems like Fang's power level gets a massive power boost. However, there's something odd about it.

    Fang starts to attack Sarada with his weaponry. The weapons he attacks Sarada with seem a lot more powerful than they should be. Something wasn't right.
    The kids were just about to step through the portal to safety and freedom when some werewolf clown appeared and started barking about insubordination and other bullshit. Sarada didn't have the patience to listen and understand, but she did feel like she could get a nice wolfskin pelt out of this. Possibly as a rug or part of a new cape.

    Hm. Wait what?

    She suddenly found herself in a nightmarish world. The Wolf thing started shooting at her, and it actually hurt? The thing also got a lot more powerful. She wasn't sure how powerful, it wasn't exactly clear.

    "Look, I don't have time for bullshit," she sighed. "Kids need to be saved and pirates killed. And you kn particular skinned and turned into a bitchin' party dress."

    She roared, letting her overwhelming Super Saiyan power push the nightmarish world away – she assumed this was some kind of magic or psychic ability – then closed in on Fang.

    Grabbing his gun by the barrel, she planted a hard kick to his torso.

  14. #3209
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cleric of Hell’s Brigade View Post
    Grinthorn’s eyes flash and the world falls away until only the two of them remain.

    An a terrible presence looms behind and all around the shadow form. One so vast it seemed to make the Earth seem small. Weather the manifestation was real or an illusion, no one could tell. But every magic user on the planet gets a nose bleed from the sheer scale of the magic presence unleashed here.



    Alakazah, Eldfen, the true form of the First wishing dragon ever made.
    The Salesman was not taken aback, rather a glint is his malformed eyes seemed to suggest he had been looking forward to the reveal.

    Yet in the presence of such power....he was still but a dot before Alakazah.

    Shrinking back to his original size and shape, the salesman folds his arms behind his back. "HeheHe....Well look at you. Throwing around that much magic.....there is a debt to be paid with the use of that power. I know where mine stands, but what about you."

    He tips his hat with a smile. "Don't be surprised when the collectors come and you can't afford it."

    Turning to the side, the man looks into the distance. "Fine day we're having, isn't it. Would be a pity if it were ruined by a regretful revelation."

    The salesmans form, his illusion, dissipated. In his place.....was a child, one of the children of the mob that had been with her parents in the wrong place at the wrong time.. Her glazed look suggested she had no idea what she was doing....but...

    ...in her hand was a recording device set to transmit.

  15. #3210
    The Tentacle God Cthulhu_of_R'lyeh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sub-Zero MKA View Post
    Her reaction was a little delayed. She stared at Ish...Inanna?

    All this time, in the years they had known and loved each other, they had both been knowing her by the wrong name? Her entire life, she had been known by the wrong name? Was this Zurvan's doing?

    Why?

    How could he do this to his own "daughter"?

    "Inanna." The name rolled of her tongue. She spoke it softly over and over, getting a feel for it. It was a nice name, for sure. But, she was so used to s̶c̶r̶e̶a̶m̶i̶n̶g̶ saying Ishtar that she kept defaulting to that in her head. "This is going to take some getting used to. But, I will, because you deserve to everyone call you by your real name." She smiled and touched her cheek. "So, now that you're finally free, how do you feel?" There was another question she wanted to ask. "And what will you do when you see him again?" Him, of course, being Zurvan.

    Because she knew what she was going to do: punch him in the face. She was pretty sure it wouldn't do any damage, but it would make her feel better. And she didn't know who this Sihn guy was -- she had only heard of him with Ish... Inanna spoke about him -- but he was getting a face punch, too, when they finally did meet.
    Inanna smiled. "You and I both, but it's not the end of the world if 'Ishtar' is the default for awhile to come." Even she'd struggled with it, after all. Would be rather childish to get upset if everyone else did it too.

    As for how she felt. Inanna had considered that while she made her fixes so there was no hesitation when she replied.

    "It's a wonderful being free to do and choose what I want to, but it's strange. I remember everything I did before this moment, as Ishtar; but it feels different. New. Almost as if I was living but ... vicariously." She explained, in a way Sarada would hopefully understand. "With Zurvan though," Inanna said before sighing.

    "There are things I'd like to do. As for what I will ? I'm not sure." She shrugged. "I suppose the question I would have to answer before I decided is ... do I hate him, for what he's done ?" She asked, before going on to say. "Yes. I hate everything he's done to me; and all the things it made me do. But at the same time, without all of that where would I be ?" Otherworld, most likely. Which meant that Evangeline never would have compelled her to come to Earth; something that'd inadvertently helped her along to this moment.

    "So I also ... don't hate him. Just see him for what he is."

    Looking up at the sky then, Inanna couldn't help but chuckle.

    "I used to see everything in black, or white. What a stubborn bitch I was." Of course, all that said the most important things had yet to be said between them. Something Sarada -- in Parsley's body -- got around to after her questions and the answers to them.

    "You look so beautiful. Even better than before."
    "I'm rather fond of it myself ... so if you hadn't liked it, we might have had an issue," Inanna joked, before growing ever so slightly more emotional. "I'm glad you're still here. Wouldn't trade my love for you, for anything ..." she leaned over to give the Saiyan a kiss on the cheek before stopping just short. "Oh ... I uh. Now that you're Parsley. How is this supposed to work ?"
    "... and when the Golden Toad started to sing, there was no turning back." - grampagen (Ochazuke)

    "Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn."

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