Author Topic: CDDA: Adventures in Cataclysm  (Read 22192 times)

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Re: CDDA: Adventures in Cataclysm
« Reply #5100 on: November 20, 2018, 12:16:19 am »
(( Written with Noct. ))

Catnip caught up to him easily enough, asking that he keep an eye out for particular things, a material which brought to mind those bio-weapons again. In truth, while there were all well-armored, not all of it had been superalloy of the quality that Catnip was likely after. Milder titanium alloys, much of which found itself underused due to being in small plates no one had much use for, and not being ideal to work with. Indeed, the shining white gauntlets were pretty much the only thing he'd used any of it for.

The strange blue-green metal however, almost only ever seen in experimental military uses and non-priceless bionics, was far more useful and far more precious. Apophis had been covered in the stuff, the mark of just how his unknown creators went all-out, and the explosion had recovered the few pieces they could salvage into twisted scrap.

"I will then. Harder to find than the titanium alloy, but if there are are sources still untouched, I'll be thorough in my search." he answered. With things squared away, he headed back out to meet with Roxanne, giving a little sigh.

He again checked the bandages about his neck, a sight that likely made the "iron marshal" less imposing to the others earlier than Roxanne's description probably made him out to be. "Well. I'm glad you at least left a note this time." he said. "And I'm glad you came back safely as well. Seems we have a lot to catch up on, properly. Assuming your...other side hasn't shared any of the discussion I had with her previously..."

“Well, we are the same person so whatever one experience the other knows. So yeah, I know about that interaction. And sorry for scaring you that time... think of it as a ghost seizure, will happen whenever the veil is messed with...” Roxanne then smiled a bit. “Yeah, didn’t go far. Don’t really plan to anymore. Am sorta done fighting... leave the violence to the young and hardy.” It was then she properly noticed the bandages on his neck and then the rest of his gear. A concerned expression was etched on her face. “Now you on the other hand... What happened to you? Are you ok? Not like you to be this banged up...”

Hector gave a nod at that, relieved at least by her remarks. "I see. At least I know how to correct it when it happens, if it does again. Seems I'll still end up having to at least briefly use your blade even if I'm not to be your wielder." he said, only to give a sigh. "To be honest, that's a relief. As often as you get in trouble...or get dragged off by random spirits...from now on, can you promise me, that if any strange beings go trying to tell you to wander off, talk to me first?" he asked.

At her concern over his bandages, he simply shook his head. "Just got a bit reckless I guess. Had an unexpected encounter while mopping up the rest of the recent group of undead that strayed towards the bridge. Hence the badge I turned in to Catnip." he explained.

“Yeah, seeing that badge scared me a bit but would’ve been rather hypocritical of me to question you about it... Glad it was taken care of and that you are relatively ok. If anything hurts let me know ok?” Roxanne’s attention then shifted to his previous comments. “Yeah, I will let you know of any other incidents. Maybe you could act as the opposite of a yes man... lord knows that’s my problem. As for you using the blade... try to do so only when needed... this thing is... evil...”

She them gave a quick look around the room fidgeting a bit before she gave a deep sigh herself. “So, what did you want to talk about? I am in trouble aren’t I?”

Hector smiled a bit, before setting a hand on her shoulder. "Should be alright, the worst of it was just a few scratches that got in between the helm and planes." he admitted. "As for that...understandable. Between the sword Helen brought here, what little momentary experience with the sword of despair, and sword of the void...your latest one seems like the most disconcerting one to hold."

At her nervous response he shook his head. "No. I'm more concerned and disappointed than anything else. Just remember...I'm here for you. I'd been trying to train and learn what I could to be worth of wielding you, but even if that's no longer an option, just remember that I'm here for you." he said. "There was also something else I wanted to surprise you with sometime, but that can wait. Seems we have catching up to do, along with other business..."

“This sword... it’s something else... When I say evil I mean it... Anyways, we should get comfortable then.” Roxanne took a seat in a chair nearby and took from her messenger bag a pair of ice cream sandwiches that somehow had not melted; she extended her hand and offered to Hector. “You want one? These are a gift from Christina, she found a way to infuse essence into food so spirits can enjoy them too. Doesn’t provide any nourishment but hey, it tastes good.” Then she peeled her own ice cream sandwich and took a bite plastering a smile on her face.

“The little things Hector... that’s what matters... how soon I forgot that... Well, seeing as I am the fuck up as usual... I’ll let you start... get what you need off your chest or ask me something... I’ll be candid, I promise...”

Hector smiled a bit as he took a seat, deciding to accept it and give it a try. It had nearly a decade at this point since he'd had any proper chilled food, let alone ice cream. He could understand that she seemed to be enjoying it almost as though it was a drug to her, finding it a pleasant reminder of life from before the cataclysm. "How she even got these, I can only guess..." he remarked, before her question gave him pause.

"I guess it's just...the usual worries. If I can trust that you won't be trying to go out and get yourself killed anymore, that's a relief at least. Even then it doesn't have to be the end to adventuring, I know both of us are the type to want to keep ourselves busy. But that's why I'd wanted to prove myself, I guess." he said, before looking away.

"But now even that won't be an option. First a family, now this..." he said, lowering his head. "I figured maybe it'd be a way for us both to do something more with our....talents. I at least can offering training to the locals and make tools for the center, but it's just not the same as being out there. But at the same time, despite that yearning...part of me wanted to be able to settle down eventually, when things had finally calmed down. With you." he confessed.

This time it was Roxanne who put a hand on Hector's shoulder and gave him a sympathetic look. "I know... and it's all my fault really... when I stuck that needle in my arm that made me into a mutant I should've stopped but no... I wanted more and it eventually culminated into this." She pulled away and made a gesture with her hands to point at herself. "You have no fault in this... so you should continue in your adventures and help others in the way that you know how. I am done... sure if I am needed I will answer the call but honestly I am tired of it all... I will focus my energies else where and see if , for once in my life, I can truly help others... You see, despite what I am now I am sure my abilities can be put to good use and that is what I want to dedicate myself now.... so that is where something I want to tell comes in... I am holding a small meeting in the burned down hotel tomorrow, will be putting up flyers in a bit; I have an idea on how I want to help... and of you are interested maybe you could attend... if not I understand...."

Roxanne then looked away, something was bothering her and then her expression turned into a pained one. "To settle down one day huh... you know... it's still not late for you... if you really want that, why not pursue it? Look at me, I am less than a shadow of my former self.... Here I am promising you the world once more and I assume deep down you don't fully believe me, hell, I am not sure if I believe myself at this point... If I am tying you down, if the spark has died... I get it... I am a desensitized killer who has brought a lot of strife into your life yet you had stood by me taking that for granted... so you have a choice to make... if that is not the life you want to live anymore... I understand..."

Hector listened, regarding her offer and the other things she said carefully, only to look her in the eye, brown eyes meeting her own oddly-colored gaze. "If you had something in mind, a meeting to arrange...I'd be happy to. Maybe I can find some way to put my own skills to good use, finally." he said, managing a little smile.

That smile faded a little, only to sigh a bit at the second part however. "After all this...honestly, you were one of the reasons I ended up staying, so long ago. I don't know if I can accept that offer to find someone else, even after you suggested it I was...reluctant to. To be's worry that's made it so hard to put up with this." he said, seeming to be weighing what he'd say next carefully. "I can't abandon you. Despite it all, I still love you. If I can trust that you'll be alright, and if you still love me as I still love you...we'll figure it out. I can promise that."

Roxanne looked at him and gave a sincere but tired smile. She looked up despite her body seeming limp and numb even as she stood. "I still do, that had never changed... the one constant in my life, to the point I started to take it for granted... as for trust, that is up to you, I can only promise transparency and to not go off on wild goose chases anymore... and if you really want to attend the talk, then you are more than welcome. I really think I can change people's lives Hector, for the better... start to rebuild... hope it goes like I want it to..." She looked down for a bit before looking back up, her smile still there but her eyes now purple. "And as for this side of me, don't worry. It seems we are slowly truly becoming one. Neither will let the other make any stupid things, in that department it's all good." Roxanne closed her eyes for a few seconds and when she opened them they were pink once more. "Anything else on your mind big guy? Now that we have this alone time, might as well use it if you want... I don't have anything I need to address to you right now beyond what has been said today or when I had that little episode..."

At that, he hugged her tightly, relieved by her words. "Thank you...if we can then, this'll give us a chance to do something constructive." he admitted, smiling a bit as he eased up on the embrace, a bit embarrassed when Eris revealed herself briefly. "That...should be it mainly. Good to get time to ourselves, and to catch up...and I have time free until next scouting run as well, so..."

Roxanne smiled herself and returned the hug happily before he pulled away. She too was rather relieved; there were plans in the work and she needed to tie some lose ends, but for the most part she was done. The call to adventure had been put on snooze for now. "Yes, it's good to just relax somewhat...although not sure if we can call this relaxing.", she teased. Then she looked over the room trying to remember where stuff was. "Well, maybe you can help me make some posters and set them up around the farm? Wanna get the word out for tomorrow, I am rather excited about it and a bit nervous...."

"That sounds fine in fact, wouldn't mind helping out while we have time." he added, the two setting to work on sorting things out and gathering materials...

Christina and Rey were walking towards the Hall after their departure with Luna in the hand of Hector. The former seemed rather serious yet still playful in mannerisms somehow. The duo walked by and Rey suddenly stopped.

"What's wrong Rey-rey?", asked Christina

"Seriously? You still haven't dropped that... You haven't told anyone that nickname yet right?", Rey responded

Christina grinned. "Don't worry, Luna doesn't know so you don't have to worry about further teasing."

"That' not what I mea- whatever, anyhow... I am not feeling so hot right now..."

"Oh? What's wrong? A bit under the weather? Can regulator spirits even get sick?"

"I need to feed... It's been a while now... I can still hold on for a bit but am rather weak. My combat ability is rather limited now and in a couple days I will lose my corporeal form."

"Jesus... ok, that sounds serious. Wanna call this off for later then? We can g-"

"No no, it's fine.", Rey interjected, "Like I said, I can still hold on. Luna said she would take me on a hunt later on, hopefully some time tomorrow..."

It was then the two were interrupted by the sound of Christina's radio making noise. She picked up and answer it knowing full well who to expect.

"Hey, are you two on your way?", asked Clare through the radio.

"Yeah, we are about 2 minutes away on foot.", Christina responded.

"Alright, see you soon then. I will be waiting for you by the side closest to the road."

"10-4, Yo-yo out."

Rey shook his head playfully and chuckled. "Did you really choose yo-yo as your call sign?", he teased.

"Much better than Harvester you edgelord."

"Hey! I am a regulator spirit, it's what I do..."

"Doesn't make my point invalid."

The two soon reached the Hall and Christina saw Clara waved them down. After a brief greeting, Clara showed them the way to the main quarters where Helen and Victor were waiting.

Elsewhere, within Helen's quarters in The Hall, Helen gave a sigh as she finished getting dressed, looking back to Victor. "So she is, it seems...well. We'll need to have her explain the rest of things when we can, it seems." she said, before stretching a bit. "So there's the lesson with Liam later today, Clara said she'd arrange something soon too...anything else I missed?" she asked.

Before Victor could answer that, there was a knock on the door, the two getting up as Helen answered it, seeing Clara there along with two unfamiliar faces.

"Well, they are finally here! Introductions are in order. This is Rey Steller, former Agent and Current Hunter of Shadows of Arcana; also a former partner of Luna's, that girl surely gets around... And this is Christina, one of the founders of Shadows or Arcana and it's current leader. She is the one who is interested in talking to you Helen."

Clara then turned around to address the guests. "This is Thane Helen McKinnon of The Cleansing Flame and now of The Flames of Arcana. I would say co-founder but knowing the other, we all know she is the actual leader.", she looked at Victor with a smirk who he in turn simply rolled his eyes. "And this is Purifier Ironwood, formerly of Shadows of Arcana but now also of The Flames of Arcana. And also my little brother, that is not relevant but it bothers him."

"Nice to finally meet you two.", Said Christina while doing a small bow.

"Yes, I've heard quite a few things along the way. Hope we can get along.", Rey added.

At the introductions Helen gave a polite nod, looking back to Victor. "I'm glad to be able to meet like this, instead of how things used to go." she admitted. "And memory loss aside, Victor is still just as important to this foundation." she remarked, hiding her amusement at how Victor was smiling almost childishly at her remark, and how Clara was the one rolling her eyes now.

"Riiight... Anyways, why don't we take a seat then?", Clara suggested.

"Fine by me.", responded Christina. She and Rey sat down in a couple chairs Clara had arranged for them. Rey stayed silent for now as Christina was the one representing them. "So, quite the interesting story; two former enemies who entered into a partnership. Forgive me if I am intruding too much but... I never thought I would see the day... Back when SoA was getting its roots, there was a lot of hatred and animosity... We've caused a lot of pain, I know, I was there; so first and foremost I would like to apologize for that..."

Helen nodded as she took a seat, before sighing a bit at the mention of that. "Indeed. And our first meeting had technically been in battle, though I don't recall if we'd even seen each other at the time." she said, sighing some. "And so too would I like to apologize for how things had declined, as time went on. Our mission strayed from our ideals." she admitted.

Clara nodded and took from a pocket a small vial which she handed to Christina. "Do you know what this is?", Christina asked Helen as she showed Helen the multi-color substance in the vial. "Both Victor and Clara have independently made what they called "Prime Essence"; a way to fuse the properties of dull, blood and normal essence into an energetic form. You currently have Victor and we have Clara who can make us more if we need to. This is a prime example of what I want to get across; we are not different, we seek the same thing I am sure.

The vial was put down but Christina fidgeted with it as she talked. "Forget what our organizations were in the past, what do we want now? Well, we at SoA want to contain and study the things that endanger those who know not any better. But not only that, no no. For what use is to keep a thing locked away without understanding what it is and why it exists. We want to study these things, learn more and find out what we can use and what needs to be discarded away. Is this not a goal we share?"

Helen listened, regarding the vial with concern. "That would explain certain worries Hector had regarding Roxanne's prior absence..." she said softly, before nodding. "Indeed. To protect others, now that there is little need for out founding objective of stopping the Sanguine Order. I'd also sought to try and teach those who seek it, to ensure that what we discover can be used safely. Better it be practiced sensibly than only by untrained arcanists fearing reprisal." she added. "But to keep others safe from what is too dangerous, and ensure what isn't can be used safely...our methods of ensuring the safety of others may have differed, but both have their merits."

Christina smiled and nodded at Helen's response. "Indeed. Among our circles we considered The Cleansing Flame too much of a 'prude' with the arcane for our liking...Hence the split. And sure, we were probably seemed like overcurious children handling things unsafely at times..."

"Not that that is completely unwarranted...", Clara added briefly with a grin towards Victor who glared back.

"Anyways.",Christina resumed, "To culminate both of those views, there was the reason for the split in the happened in the first place. A powerful arcane sword that we would later learn was a piece of Anomon's puzzle. The sword our own sword of harvest derived from; though, I haven't seen any of those in a while... But I digress. It has come to my understanding it was in the possession of Victor for some time? Now Roxanne is in charge of it along with Conveyance. That's good, we have three pieces secured and the forth is in the hands of a mutual ally. Well...this should test both our resolve to an alliance, I have a proposal for you to start working for a shared goal. Interested?"

Helen listened, stifling her amusement at Clara's remarks, knowing all too well the reason behind that. "Indeed, that it seems was the very thing that made our initial split turn violent, between the Grandmaster and the Jarl, if I recall what my parents said of the event. Concerned though I am about having three of them in one place, especially given what led to what seems to be her current state, but we don't have any better methods of securing them." she admitted.

At the offer however, she perked up a bit. "Very well then. What did you have in mind?" she asked.

"Don't worry, we are nowhere near desperation yet. While this whole situation is tricky, the way things are then as long as nothing unexpected happens then we are fine. That is what I want to propose you, a way to keep things fine. I don't know how much you been briefed at but allow me to give a refresher. Roxanne currently is the current incarnation of the sword of assimilation. Both the sword of the void and the sword of convergence have been reborn with new consciousness and, as weird as this may be, believe Roxanne is their mother... We will focus on keeping Roxanne in check, we have our means... some drastic but hopefully it won't come to that. What I ask of you is to help secure the other two: void and convergence. We need some sort of warded container we can store them in when not in use. Someplace they can be placed in and remain dormant; that way if need be we can deal them away indefinitely and prevent a union. Does this seems like something you might want to tackle?"

Helen gave a nod, smiling some. "That's something I think I can attempt. I had prepared measures for back when Roxanne had possession of Despair, which required the use of specific bonds linking the weapon to its place of containment. The main flaw with it was the fact that it still needed to be accessible to Roxanne for her use, and that required the wielder have access to its bonds." she said, before giving a sigh.

"Admittedly, I don't know how well they would've held up had the enchantment been restricted to its fullest extent, but the sword's ability to recognize the person who ended up taking it from her likely made undermining the enchantment far easier. Not even trying to track them using the bond still functioned by the time I was able to attempt it." she stated. "But if Void and Convergence are to be kept in a state where they have no wielder, that would make securing them far easier."

Christina smiled wider and nodded at Helen's explanation. She then looked to Clara for validation; while Christina was rather well versed in the arcane, her focus was more in the combat aspects from it since her bionics and mutations took care of the rest. It was safe to say that she was the one least versed in the full intricacies of the arcane. Clara nodded nodded back signaling that she trusted what Helen proposed. "Very well!", Christina exclaimed, "Let's shake on it then." She offered her hand to Helen. "Say, what shall I address you as? Is Thane still fine or do you go by anything else. I ask because I do not wish to use the title of founder or grandmaster due to... bad memories. I suppose Overseer seems fitting? What do you think?"

Helen's smile brightened at that, before shaking Christina's hand in response. "Thank you. As for that, whatever you deem fitting. Even without old formalities passed down by my parents, we're still Brothers and Sisters as they'd call us, are we not?"

Christina shook Helen’s hand with her on smile. Her grip was tight which would seem odd given her petite appearance; her smile friendly and warm but her shake firm and formal. “That we are! Hopefully not just in arms but one day we may look back once peaceful days are upon us.” The handshake ended and Christina looked at the others. “Well, I’ll leave you three to it. We will be around here for now so if you need anything. Let use know.”

“Wait, three?”, Clara asked confused.

“Yeah, you are to help them. You were oh so eager to see your little brother so you are to stick around for a while; don’t want to hear your whining again...”

“W-whining?! Oh, so that’s how it is? Fiiine, we will have a grand old time together!”

Christina shook her head in amusement and despite her words, Clara’s tone was more of someone being embarrassed than any legitimate hostility.

“Alright, we will be going now, take care!” Rey and Christina rose from their seats and dismissed themselves before heading towards the door.
« Last Edit: November 20, 2018, 12:33:12 pm by Chaosvolt »