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The Clans RPG • View topic - Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo
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Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

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Oblivion

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Posts: 51

Joined: Thu May 01, 2014 10:46 pm

Post Wed Oct 22, 2014 9:12 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

Title: For Science!
Timestamp: Between "Arella/Raven-Sensai!" And Monday.
Authors: Skorpion, Oblivion, Darktan
Locations: CMGY Academy, Tokyo Streets, CATastrophe club.



Tiffaney stalked through the halls of CMGY Academy with catlike grace, being sure that not even her breath could be heard. Normally she wouldn't be concerned with not being seen, but today she was stalking a very particular quarry. If she had cat ears, they would have perked at the sight of her prey. Quietly and deliberately she crept up behind Lucius, using a magical platform to gain the few inches she needed to wrap an arm around his neck while gently scritching an ear with the other. She moved her mouth close to the ear she wasn't scritching. "Lucius, I want your body." She whispered in what could have been a sensual tone.

Lucius purrred as his ear was scritched, leaning back to look at her with a lecherous grin on his face. 'Oh, aye? I didnae think ye'd be interested, wi' yer bairns an' all...'

Tiffaney continued to scritch his ear. "I have a need only you can fulfill. " She said as she used the hand she wrapped around his neck to draw a line down his chest in a sensual manner to mark a location for a potential incision.

Lucius chuckled softly, his tail sliding up Tiffaney's leg. 'Cannae resist the kitty ears, can ye?'

"Though adorable, your ears are not where my interest lies. " Tiffaney said as she moved the arm around his neck to under his arm and lifted up his shirt, using the hand she was using to scritch his ears to pull out a marker. "My interest lies somewhere more... Private " She uncapped the marker with her teeth before starting to mark a dotted line up his chest.

Lucius blinked a couple of times, before disengaging from her. 'Oh, I see how it is. Ye only want me fer my body.'

Tiffaney looked slightly taken back by Lucius' sudden disengagement. "I told you that, and you seemed interested." She said holding up the marker with a cutesy confused expression, her glasses drooping slightly.

Lucius cocked his ears at her. 'I thought ye meant...' He looked down, then back up at Tiffaney, before shrugging. 'Ye're not takin' me apart tae see how I work.'

"Don't worry! I won't take you apart! Promise!" Tiffaney said as she waved her hands in front of her in a panic. "I just want to cut you open and look inside is all..." She dismissed the platform and dropped to the ground, before walking towards Lucius.

Lucius stepped back, holding his hands up defensively. 'Ye cannae jus' do scans? X-rays an' so forth?'

"I want to see what makes a highlander immortal, and for that I need to study a highlander! And besides, I tried that already!" Tiffaney said frustrated at her failure. "I didn't want to cut you open without your permission though, so I asked. "

Lucius nodded. 'I thank ye fer that; most don't even bother askin', an' end up having tae be sliced.' He continued to back up as she continued to approach, his tail feeling behind him for obstructions. 'An' I donnae even know wha' makes me immortal; legend is fair short on the how an' the why, jes' explains the wha'.'

"That's what I want to find out! Is it a virus? A bacteria? Maybe even a parasite!" Tiffaney said as she continued approaching him, picking up speed as she got more excited.

'Genetics, far's I ken. Bunch o' my generation has it, in family lines...' Lucius tripped over a stray gym bag and hit the floor with a solid *thud* 'Ow.'

Tiffaney pounced onto Lucius, landing on his chest. "I can find out for sure. All you need to do is let me."

Lucius grunted as the breath was knocked out of him; she was heavier than she looked. 'Nae, lass. I donnae want tae be sliced open. If ye slice something critical, I'd skip the rest o' the term recovering...' He tried to struggle away from under her, claws gripping the flooring.

Tiffaney wibbled to Lucius. "I'll take good care of you. I can even upgrade you if you want!"

Lucius shook his head. 'I donnae NEED upgrades! I'm an all-natural, organic scotsman!' He protested, continuing his efforts to get away from the magical girl pinning him down.

"Pleeeeeease!" Tiffaney said before taking a moment to adjust her glasses.

Lucius sighed. 'Lassie; I used tae date a magical girl. I'm the principal of a magical girl academy. If ye think wibbling an' pleading will get ye anywhere, ye're mistaken.' He shifted a little, nudging her off him as she adjusted her glasses and quickly pulling away to stand up.

Tiffaney let out a small oof as she was nudged off of him. She looked to him and puffed out her cheeks and tears began to form in her eyes before she stood. "But, science!"

Lucius shook his head. 'I'm nae a science experiment, lass. Ye're worse than Skorp, I swear. He's an amoral paranoid nutcase, but he's at least got ethics.'

"I have ethics!" Tiffaney corrected. "If I didn't, I would have sedated you and performed the operation after I took the X-Rays! And I definitely wouldn't have asked!" She said before letting out a "Hmf!" and crossing her arms while turning her head to the side.

Lucius shrugged. 'Ye still shouldnae be trying tae cut people apart tae see how they work...' He trailed off, as something dawned on him, before pointing his finger at Tiffaney. 'Don't ye dare go near Nicole with that intention. Harm her, an' they'll be retrievin' ye from the moon. In pieces.'

"Nicole? Your motorcycle?" Tiffaney asked, tilting her head to the side as she did. "I'm not gonna dissect your motorcycle. I don't think I could gain any medical knowledge from her."

'The warning still stands, lass.' Lucius paused, as something clicked into place in his head, causing an ear to twitch. 'When'd ye X-ray me?'

"Huh?" Tiffaney placed a pointer finger on her chin as she thought. "I think it was while you were sleeping four days ago between the hours of one and three in the morning."

Lucius blinked a few times. What. 'Why... Didnae Kat object tae it?'

"You were alone when I stopped by." Tiffaney said with a confused expression.

Lucius frowned slightly. 'She must've been off fightin' crime or somethin'.'

"I dunno, but you should really watch your alcohol intake, you were legally dead according to the blood test." Tiffaney informed while she wiggled a finger at him.

Lucius sighed. 'One, I'm tolerant tae alcohol. I kinn drink all day wi'out so much a' a stumble. Two, I'm Scottish. So, nae. I cannae lay off the booze. An' three, test this. Donnae let it touch metal. Or drink it.' He pulled out a ceramic hipflask and handed it to her.

"Hm?" Tiffaney said as she took the flask and raised it to the light, to examine it as though the flask were clear. "What is it?" She then asked, for she could not see through the flask.

"Whisky. Strong stuff, like my granddaddy taught me tae make. Also works as impure fuel.' Lucius grinned. 'THAT is what I drink tae get drunk.'

Tiffaney looked to Lucius, then to the flask, before returning her gaze to him. "This isn't over." She said before she turned around and began to walk to the science lab.

Lucius chuckled. 'Try lighting the blood sample.'

"Only if you provide a cleaner replacement sample." Tiffany said from down the hall, her curiosity temporarily shifted from Lucius' immortality.

Lucius snickered as he headed off to his next class.

---

Lucius stretched, joints cracking. The paperwork was finished, and the mid-afternoon sun was streaming in through his windows. It was the perfect time for a nap. He yawned as he closed the laptop on his desk, before propping his booted feet atop it and leaning back in his office chair for a quick catboynap.

"Lucius~" Tiffaney said in a cheerful tone as she let herself into his office while holding the the now empty flask. "Mind if I ask you something?"

Lucius snored by way of response, ears twitching occasionally as he snoozed.

Tiffaney quietly shut the door and walked lightly towards Lucius, lightly poking his cheek once she was next to him, and setting the flask on his desk. When that warranted no response, she had a brief internal debate that led to her withdrawing a needle from her shoulder bag, along with some latex gloves, cotton balls, and rubbing alcohol. She slipped on the gloves, and dabbed a cotton ball with rubbing alcohol, before rubbing the inside of his elbow. She then lined up the needle with a vein and withdrew a small amount of blood. She then deposited the blood into a tube and packed everything back into her shoulder bag. When everything was packed up she once more tried to wake him. "Lucius?"

Lucius grumbled, ears flicking. 'N'now, Kat. Sleeping.'

"Lucius, it's Tiffaney, and you're still at school." Tiffaney informed.

Lucius opened an eye, yawned, and opened the other eye. He yawned again, before grumbling in Gaelic as he pulled his feet from the desk. 'I was napping, damn ye woman.'

"Sorry, I know you're aware your blood sample was flammable, but methanol?! If you weren't immortal you'd be dead!" Tiffaney said in a distinctly frustrated voice. "Do you have any idea how toxic that is?"

Lucius nodded. 'Tha's why I told ye not tae drink it. And yes, if I wasnae immortal, I'd be dead lots o' times over by now, lassie. Ye ever see the file the NSA have on me? 'International terrorist', because I blew up an oil refinery.' He gave a brief, dramatic pause. 'It was an accident. I was, however, in it a' the time, an' hunting a vampire. I fired, he moved, I missed, somethin' exploded, an' I woke up two weeks later in a ten foot deep crater. I get sucked intae jet engines fair often. I've been shot, stabbed, blown up, run over, ye name it, I've probably been hit by it. The methanol is merely the only thing tha' gets me properly drunk, lassie.'

"And yet you're opposed to me looking inside you." Tiffaney said in an attempt to lightenn the mood. "But seriously, just because you're immortal doesn't mean you have to put yourself in mortal danger."

'Ye say that like I do it fer fun, lass. I do it because I can survive it, I have the powers, and nobody else is gonnae do it. If ye remember, I saved your daughter from thugs when she first arrived here. Tha's an example o' WHY I do tha'.'

"Still. You shouldn't keep hurting yourself like that. It's not healthy." Tiffaney said in an unmistakably concerned voice.

Lucius sighed. 'I'm immortal, an' I regenerate. I'll be fine, lass. Ye should be more concerned about Skorp; all this planning he's doin' is makin' him paranoid and twitchy again.'

"I am worried about Skorpion. I'm worried about every Largoist. I'm just worried about you too; immortal as you are, pain still hurts." Tiffaney scritched Lucius' ear. "I don't want you to tell me you'll stop, it's who you are and I understand, just... Try to avoid it."

Lucius leaned into her, purring gently as his ear was scritched. 'I do try tae. Not my fault there's a load o' pro-human bigots runnin' around wi' sharp objects.'

"Good." Tiffaney said with relief as she walked behind him and gently rested her chin on his head. "How are Whisp and Devin doing in your classes?"

Lucius' ears moved to accommodate her as he looked up, going slightly crosseyed. 'Doin' fine, academically. In the practical classes, Whisp's at a bit of a handicap. Devin's helping her catch up, but I donnae think he'd know one end o' a piece o' wood from other wi'out looking things up on his phone when he ken I'm not looking.' He shrugged. 'They'll learn. No accidents yet, though, thank gods. Socially, Whisp is picking it up, slowly. Devin needs to come out o' his shell, though.'

"Getting him out of his shell is the main reason I had him attend. Academically he has more degrees than me, but he needs to interact with others." Tiffaney let out a sigh. "And it's nice to hear that Whisp is doing well."

Lucius nodded. 'She also needs winkling out o' her shell. Kawasaki and Yakashima are working on it, though. Also, I hear Johnathan made a couple o' friends the other night.' He grinned knowingly, an ear flicking. 'Met up wi' Ayano an' Miyu over ostriches, then went for sushi.'

Tiffaney smiled gently. "Lexi found herself a boyfriend, and Evie's become something of an idol around HQ due to her baking. I'm happy my kids are doing so well outside of that awful lab."

Lucius nodded. 'So'm I. Being cooped up in a lab is no life for anyone. Tha', of course, extends tae ye as well. Ye should get out, an' enjoy life a bit outside o' the lab, lassie.'

"Me?" Tiffaney asked raising her head to get a better view of his face before pondering a bit. "I suppose you're right, but I think I'm a tad too old for dating, and work is one of the few things that can keep me occupied."

Lucius chuckled softly. 'Even on yer own, or wi' one or more of your wee bairns.' He thought briefly, his grin spreading wider. 'Yer never too old fer anythin', though, as my granddaddy used tae say. An' he was still tossin' cabers las' I heard. An' Skorp needs someone tae distract him from bein' a mad engineer. Maybe the two o' ye could get away from work together?'

"Me and Skorpion?" Tiffaney asked as her cheeks took a shade of red. "I'm sure he wouldn't be interested, and besides, I don't think we could go anywhere without having to deal with annoying assassination attempts..." She said as she prodded her pointer fingers together.

Lucius sighed. 'He might be interested; no harm in trying, aye? Otherwise, nobody's dumb enough tae try an' attack Skorp these days, especially if he's out on a date. It'd be suicide. An' you're a magical girl, so nothin' can stop the power o' love, aye?'

Tiffaney blinked a couple time. "But I'm not... Magical girl school... Right. Try not to tell anyone though, ok?" Tiffaney said, once more providing scritches to assist in convincing him. "I'll give it a shot."

Lucius nodded, purrring louder. 'That, an' ye were standing four inches above the ground when ye grabbed me, an' ye smell more of magic than the fancy perfume ye're wearing.' He grinned, chuckling softly. 'But nae, I won't tell. Tha's fer ye tae do. Though I suspect Skorp already knows; he's sensitive tae magic, like.'

Tiffaney nodded. "He probably does, but Iron Fist Tiffaney's retired." She said before standing up straight and stretching.

Lucius looked over at her, cocking his ears. 'Evil eye, huh?'

"I'm sorry, but I don't get the reference." Tiffaney said apologetically.

Lucius rolled his eyes, ears moving along with the motion. 'It's even one of their biggest...' He trailed off, before sighing. 'Sorry. Been spendin' too much time with the band, an' I forget people donnae ken heavy metal.'

"I'm sorry, I don't follow music all that much." Tiffaney said as she scratched the back of her head. "Oh, any news on the new teacher?"

Lucius nodded. 'Aye, she's due tae start next week. The convoy attack shook her up wee bit, but she'll be fine now.'

"That's good to hear, who knows, maybe we'll solve the staffing dilemma soon." Tiffaney said with a laugh.

Lucius chuckled. 'Maybe. She's takin' over English classes an' some of the specific magical girl-related ones, an' managing the cheerleading an' archery clubs, too. Maybe we can have whole months wi'out hospital trips now, rather'n isolated weeks?'

"Anything is possible." Tiffaney said before checking the time. "Well I suppose it's time to take the kids home." She waved to Lucius as she began to leave the room.

Lucius waved back, before propping his feet back onto the desk to resume his nap. 'Drive safe, an' watch fer dwarves. Roads are lousy with 'em this time o' year.'

"Enjoy your nap and get home safely." Tiffaney said in return, before quietly leaving the room.

---

Lucius weaved through an intersection, causing a cacophony of honks and screeching tires as he completely failed to give way or stop for the red light. A brief cruise later, and he stopped in the alleyway behind an otherwise unremarkable apartment building, dismounting Nicole and wheeling her through the security door. Once inside, he parked Nicole in the lift, pushed the button for his floor, and stepped out again before the doors closed. A few brief steps took him to the stairwell, and he took off upwards, counting off floors as he rose, before intercepting the lift just as the doors opened and retrieving Nicole from inside. He then set off down the hallway, counting off doors until reaching an unremarkable door, opening the lock without bothering to use his key, and setting Nicole just inside the door. He smiled as he saw Katrina stretched out on the couch asleep, leaning down to kiss her (and slip in a brief grope), before heading for the shower.

Meanwhile on a roof across the street Tiffaney was lurking with a pair of binoculars. "Tsk, he's not alone this time..." She whispered to herself as she lowered the binoculars. "And I was hoping to try and convince him too..."

Lucius shed his clothing into a pile on the floor and stepped into the shower, purring as the hot water hit his skin. He set about washing himself off, paying particular attention to the fur of his ears and tail, and removing residual sparkles from the magical girls and his inherent bishie-ness, singing loudly as he did so.

Tiffaney bit her lip as she imagined a perfect incision down his chest and the knowledge that could be gained from it. "Why couldn't he have just let me? It's not like I'd let him be awake through the procedure..." She said as she tapped her foot impatiently. "Maybe I could bribe him?"

Lucius stretched, before shutting the water off and snagging a towel from a nearby shelf, drying himself off before slinging it over his shoulder as he padded to the bedroom to find a change of clothing.

Tiffaeny tracked his movements through what windows he had. "But what would I bribe him with? He doesn't seem all that interested in science, and him being immortal makes free health care irrelevant."

Lucius emerged from the bedroom, still nude but for a grin across his face. He headed to the couch where Katrina was still sleeping, and leaned down to kiss her.

Katrina, having actually been awoken by his loud singing was merely laying in wait. Once he leaned down her arms shot out and dragged him to the couch.

Tiffaney saw where this was going from past observations and promptly rolled her eyes before standing up and setting about walking to her car, looking rather disappointing.

---

A while later, Lucius exited the building on Nicole, moving at high speed as he headed off to the CATastrophe club. On the way, he pulled over at a small Chinese takeaway, stepping inside to pick up an order.

Tiffaney parked a small ways down the street in a car that she had purchased in order to stick out less while following him; the RFID tags that Skorpion had been putting in his food had also been proving themselves to be useful. She rested her head on her palm and tapped her steering wheel as she waited for him to get his food. "I could drug him. I won't... But I could."

Lucius emerged from the takeaway, carrying a large stack of containers. He settled on a nearby bench, and set about opening them and consuming the contents.

Tiffaney cringed slightly at the sight of Lucius eating his way through the containers filled with what she imagined to be assorted chinese-themed fried foods. "I wonder how may heart attacks he's had..." She thought aloud as she observed the feeding.

Lucius finished his meal/feast, stacking the containers before dropping them into a nearby recycling bin. The plastic fork joined them after a while, as he finished picking his teeth with it. As he stepped back to Nicole, he froze as a noise caught his attention, his ears swiveling to locate it.

As she saw Lucius' sudden state of alert Tiffaney froze in place. "Did he hear me?" She asked herself as she debated ducking in her seat.

Lucius turned, looking past Tiffaney's car to the alleyway beyond. His ears twitched again, and he took off running towards the alleyway, taking to the air after a few steps. He drew his sword as he passed Tiffaney's car, landing just inside the mouth of the alleyway and walking in slowly, watching the area closely. 'Hey! Leave her alone, ye scunner!'

Tiffaney let out an eep as she saw Lucius jump towards her with his sword in hand, but soon grew confused as he jumped over the car rather than onto or beside it. She turned around to see him entering the alley. With a hand on her chest and a sigh of relief she proceeded to try and see as much of what was happening as she could.

Lucius swung his sword as a pair of thugs turned towards him, raising sawn-off shotguns at him. Their words of protest, and the crying of the half-dressed catgirl between them, were cut short as a wave of force hit them. Lucius grinned as the guns were sent spinning off, walking closer as the thugs panicked. As they drew pistols, he swung his sword again, the tip severing the guns neatly in half, taking fingers along with them. The thugs turned and fled, making it nearly to the end of the alleyway before being floored by an air-conditioning unit. Lucius turned to the catgirl, helping her up and accepting a hug of gratitude.

Tiffaney nodded in approval at the outcome, surprisingly okay with the severed fingers. "Serves them right." She couldn't help but say aloud.

Lucius led the girl back to Nicole, wrapping her in a spare hoodie from the luggage box before hailing her a taxi and sending her off. Once she was properly departed, he mounted up on Nicole again, setting off for the club again.

After Lucius departed she looked to the tracker that she had installed onto her dash and set off to follow him.

---

Lucius arrived at the CATastrophe club after a short while, parking around the back and heading in past the bouncers, carrying his guitar with him.

After Lucius had entered she awaited someone to follow after him, her left eye glimmered purple for a brief moment as she vanished from sight, slipping past the bouncers and entering the club as the next person gained entry. Once inside she dismissed her cloak and set about locating Lucius.

Lucius was off to one side, talking with Lola as his band set up on stage. Lola was talking animatedly, her ears bouncing to and fro as she gestured with her arms, occasionally pausing to bark directions at the staff around. Lucius was, for his part, mostly nodding; alternately listening to her and half-hypnotized by the fluffy white bobbing bunny ears.

Tiffaney watched the two talk a bit before noticing that a lab coat probably wasn't the best attire to be wearing at a club, not that she had anything else to wear with her at the moment. "So this is why I always carried several changes of clothes in hammerspace as a teenager." She contemplated briefly before continuing her observation.

Lucius and Lola separated, with Lucius heading backstage briefly, emerging on stage flanked by a pair of dancers in extremely skimpy lingere. The lights dimmed, and the band kicked off, Lucius out in front, playing guitar and singing.

"So this is a club. Not really a place for someone like me." Tiffaney concluded as she regardless attempted to make her way towards the front.

Lucius continued with the set, the girls taking to stands either side of the stage to dance, occasionally leaning down to accept a tip from the crowd. As Tiffaney made her way to the front, he completely failed to spot her.

Once Tiffaney had found herself adequately close to the front she watched the rest of the show in remarkable stillness in comparison to the rest of the crowd who occasionally bumped into her with all the effectiveness of bumping into a wall.

---

Lucius finished his set, bowing and kissing one of the dancers before heading backstage with the rest of the band, accepting a mug from a waitress on the way. Once backstage, he flopped onto a couch to swig from the mug, eyes drooping closed.

Once the show had ended and Lucius was backstage Tiffaney's left eye once more glimmered purple, causing her to disappear before hopping onto stage and entering backstage just in time for her cloak to fully deplete and bring her back into sight.

Lucius was settled on the couch, half-asleep as the bustle of backstage happened at the other end of the room. Next to him sat a pint mug half-full of whisky, a faint shimmer of evaporating alcohol over it.

Tiffaney walked up to Lucius glancing at the whiskey like the poison it was before giving his face a test-poke.

Lucius grunted, cracking an eye open. 'What?'

Tiffaney jumped back and let out an eep of panic before looking around for someplace to hide.

Lucius looked around, and grunted before returning to his nap.

Katrina entered the backstage area just in time to see Tiffaney's moment of panic then relaxation as Lucius continued his nap. She silently stepped up behind the mostly good doctor. "Can I help you?"

The hairs on Tiffaney's neck stood on end as she turned her head to look behind her. "Oh, it's you, ummm. No?" She tried, giving a small fake laugh and rubbing her arm.

Katrina's red eyes seemed to peer directly in to the doctor's soul, "Then you must be lost, the infirmary is two floors down," Katrina gestured to the bag and the coat. The damphir knew good and well the doctor wasn't here for ORAZ, but wanted to see how this would play out.

"Well I'm here, for... Him." Tiffaney nervously pointed to Lucius, feeling as though she had shrunk a couple inches.

"Oh a fan?" Katrina grinned a predatory grin, "Did he tell you our arrangement?"

"Arrangement? Do you mean the regular fornication? No." Tiffaney answered, sounding confused.

"No, I mean the irregular ones. Like you," Katrina said, her single fang showing as her grin widened, "If you want him, I get a little bit of you~"

"Wait!" Tiffaney said as she extended an open palm towards Katrina. "You mean if I let you bite me, I can have him? For how long?"

"Well I don't really bite unless you want me too, other than nibbling," Katrina explained, "Then there's also the licking, possibly some spanking if you like that," Katrina continued to list off sexual acts in the vaguest, most benign way possibe as she ticked them off on her fingers, "As for how long? Well until we are all finished of course," she ended with a grin.

"We? You're going to help?" Tiffaney then asked, dismissing the list of vague, yet obvious sexual acts.

"Well, I'm not gonna let you two have all the fun with out me," Katrina replied.

"I guess an assistant couldn't hurt. You know your way around medical tools right?" Tiffaney then asked with a hint of excitement. "Though we'll need to move him to a sterile environment."

"Medical tools? You are a kinky one aren- Wait, sterile environment?" Katrina stopped, "Wat?"

"Well I'm not going to dissect him at a club. Who knows what would get into the incision." Tiffaney turned to look at Lucius. "I know he's a heavy sleeper, but I've never tried to move him before... Should we sedate him?"

"Dissect him?!" Katrina exclaimed, "Are you fucking crazy?"

"I've been told that, but I assure you I am quite sane, and even more practiced." Tiffaney assured with a smile. "You don't need to worry about any lasting damages. I'm only going to study his interior."

"And what did he say about that?" Katrina said as she crossed her arms, her eyes narrowing.

"Well... He... Said no, but with your arrangement it's okay right?" Tiffaney than asked with a tinge of hope.

"My arrangement was for kinky sex," Katrina replied flatly.

"But! Are you sure? I could give him some enhancements if you want!" Tiffaney offered in an attempt to gain Katrina's consent.

Katrina opened her mouth to say something but paused for a moment, "...Define 'enhancements'." She made little air quotes with her fingers.

'Wha'? Right here? That IS kinky...' Lucius looked around, ears flicking. After a couple of seconds, he realized what was happening in front of him. 'I already told ye I'm nae being sliced up fer experiments, y'ken?'

"It's not an experiment, it's research!" Tiffaney corrected. "And maybe a couple enhancements..."

Katrina patpat'd Lucius on the head, "Explain these enhancements."

Lucius nuzzled Katrina's hand, sighing. 'I said nae, lass. An' that' means naw.'

Tiffaney blinked a couple times before smiling at apparent progress. "I could make him stronger, faster, more durable, or pretty much anything you ask."

Katrina waved a had dismissively at both of them for different reasons, "He's already immortal, telekinetic and Scottish. Kinda rules out tho- Wait anything?" Katrina did a double take, "Like give him...two or make it prehensile?"

"I mean, those are kinda odd requests. I could, but are you sure you'd want me to?" Tiffaney then asked with a concerned expression, after all Lucius already had trouble with one tail, let alone two.

'I donnae want tae be sliced up!' Lucius protested. 'Are ye two even plannin' tae listen tae me?'

"Shhh," Katrina scritched his ears, hitting the magic spot instantly, "I'm trying to talk here." She turned back to Tiffaney, "Were you not listening to the long list I rattled off?"

Lucius groaned softly, eyes glazing over as he started to purr loudly, nuzzling into the scritches.

"No." Tiffaney admitted, sounding guilty. "But I don't think he'd be able to handle two."

"They aren't for him, they're me," Katrina grinned pervertedly as she continued to scritch Lucius' ears.

Lucius sighed, turning to look at the wall next to them. 'Hello wall. D'ye think it's right tae slice intae someone wi'out their consent? Nae, I didnae think so either...'

"Must have slipped," Katrina adjusted the scritches to find the magical spot again.

"For you? I can give you one if you want me to." Tiffaney offered, thinking she'd look cute with a kitty tail of her own. "I think you'd look good with one."

Lucius' purr returned with a venegance as Katrina's hand got his ears again.

"Nooooo," Katria looked at the "good" doctor like she had three heads, "I'm not into that futa stuff."

"Futa?" Tiffaney said questioningly with a pause, before her eyes widened in realization. "I thought you were talking about his tail! Why would you want him to have two genitalia?"

"Well there's two places to put them," Katrina said as if it was the most normal thing in the world.

"Two places to..." Tiffaney trailed off before the reality of what Katrina just said hit her. "You mean you... But why would... That's just unnatural." She said, completely oblivious to her own hypocrisy.

Lucius shook his head, pulling away from Katrina's hand with great difficulty to slip away while they were debating. After slowly backing away from them, he slipped quietly out of a fire exit. A few seconds later, Nicole could be heard leaving at speed.

Katrina, however, continued to scritch the air his ears once occupied, "That may be true, who's to say?" She grinned, "But it's quite fun~"

"How could that be fun? It sounds painful." Tiffaney said, still weirded out by the prospect.

"Maybe a little the first time, but that applies elsewhere as well," Katrina nodded, "Besides, a little pain can enhance the pleasure." Her fang was exposed by her grin once again.

"Right. Wait!" Tiffaney paused as she examined the empty seat that once contained Lucius. "He's gone!" She exclaimed as she pointed to the empty seat.

Katrina looked down at her hand that was scritching air, "So he is," she shrugged, "Anyway, I'm sure it would be easier to show you than explain~" Katrina was suddenly behind Tiffaney as she said the final word.

Tiffaney jumped forward before turning around sharply. "No, um. I'm fine." She said as she waved her hands in front of her and stepped back.

"Awww, you're so cute when you do that," Katrina said, her grin widening, "Are you suuuure?"

"Yes I'm quite sure." Tiffaney said with a fake laugh as he glassed drooped slightly. "Something like that isn't something I could imagine getting into."

"What, a bed?" Katrina teased, "It's not difficult, you just lay down." She winked.

"Surely I'm not attractive enough for you to hold any real sexual interest in me." Tiffaney said as she backed into a wall.

Katrina looked over the doctor with a rather predatory look, "On the contrary," she grinned.

Tiffaney's cheeks took on a shade of red. "You don't really mean that. I'm just an old egg head." She said as she pressed her back to the wall.

Katrina moved in closer, "Brains are sexy too you know."

"I appreciate the acknowledgement, but I'm not that exciting." Tiffaney said nervously, her cheeks growing redder as Katrina approached.

Katrina chuckled at that, "Your cheeks say you are quite excited~" She teased.

"T - that's not true!" Tiffaney exclaimed as she tried to hide her cheeks and prop up her glasses, while looking off to the side.

Katrina followed her gaze as there was a mirror exactly in the direction that Tiffany was looking. "Yes they are," She pointed to the doctors further reddening cheeks, "Right there~"

"I haven't wanted anyone in twenty years, and that hasn't changed!" Tiffaney said in an attempt to sound assertive, which failed miserably due to her red cheeks and inability to make eye contact.

"Doesn't mean you can't have a little fun," Katrina said as she positioned herself just shy of violating Tiffaney's personal space.

"What's so fun about fornicating anyway?" Tiffaney asked as she attempted to find an escape.

Katrina looked like she had been slapped. "What's so fun about it?" She repeated the question as if it would suddenly make sense. "Everything! Everything is fun about it." She looked at the doctor with a worried expression, "Who did what to you that you don't know it's fun?"

Tiffaney clenched her teeth, now looking decidedly upset. "You really want to know?! No one! That's who!" She yelled before covering her mouth. "I'm sorry." She said quietly as she looked downwards and to the left.

Katrina blinked in shock and took a step back, "Well, I am quite sorry to have upset you," her playful tone and demeanor replaced with a more serious tone.

"No, I shouldn't have yelled. It's just embarrassing... The boys were all over the cheerleaders in highschool and nobody wanted anything to do with the leader of the science club. Then the BGR hired me and I pretty much gave up on any type of relationship..." Tiffaney responded as she rubbed her arm and continued to blush. "It makes sense though. I mean, who would want to date a woman who cuts people open and changes what they are against their will for a living."

Katrina playfully raised her hand with a chuckle, "Well, all kidding aside, the entirety of our conversation was trying to get in to your pants. I can not condone a biopsy on my boyfried against his will. And to be honest, I doubt you'd find out anything. Supernatural insides look pretty much like normal insides. Trust me, I know." Katrina couldn't help but grin a little sadistically with that one.

Tiffaney let out a sigh of defeat. "Okay, I'll give up on dissecting Lucius..." She said with disappointment.

"Yeah, there are somethings that science just can't explain," Katrina said, "Like me for example," the damphir shrugged.

"Everything has a scientific explanation!" Tiffaney declared. "Get the right equipment, and enough samples and you can accomplish anything.

"Some things just are, and you have to accept it without rhyme or reason," Katrina replied.

"But if we accept the impossible as impossible we can't progress! The reason for science is to question everything from a logical standpoint. They thought space travel was impossable, and yet we've flown to the moon!" Tiffaney argued with a sparkle in her eyes.

"Well obviously it's not impossible," Katrina said, "We exist after all. Let me put it this way: show me an electron. Put one where I can see it, smell it and feel it."

"I would need a Quantom Strobiscope for you to actually see one, and as for feeling one, all you need to do is grab a live electrical wire, though that's more like billions. I also think it is too small for even a vampire's sense of smell to pick up on yet." Tiffaney explained.

"Okay, that example worked better fifty years ago," Katrina muttered and shook her fist at a near by clock.

"See! Just because we can't now doesn't mean there won't be a day!" Tiffaney said excitedly as her point was enforced.

"Okay fine little Miss Smarty Pants," Katrina leaned forward again, "Show me sexual attraction under your quantum strap-on scope."

"But sexual attraction more relates to chemicals within the brain that are released by certain physical and mental stimuli. For example: Lust has more to do with testosterone, and oestrogen. Any actual attraction is fueled by adrenaline, dopamine, and sterotonin; and attachment is caused by oxcytocin, and vasporessin." Tiffaney informed factually, the innuendo going completely over her head.

"So you can't show it to me?" Katrina asked with a smirk.

"I can!" Lola appeared behind Katrina, wearing an under-bust corset, witch's hat, lacy panties, and not a lot else. "Or, at least, show it in action."

Katrina made no attempt to hide her blatant oogling of her brothers girlfriend, "Hush, you're ruining my point. Also, nice outfit."

Lola grinned. "It is, isn't it? Anyway, if you two are done trying to vivisect part of my house band, would you mind clearing out of backstage? The next act is due on in a few minutes." She pointed with her broomstick to a line of dancers putting the finishing touches on makeup and costumes. "And you're blocking the doorway. Also, where's your catboy?"

"He vanished," Katrina said as she shrugged and got the broom. Since she was going to oogle, she might as well help out. Oooh! Maybe she would find some take-out for dinner. She grinned at the thought.

"No biting the dancers until after they're done." Lola frowned at Katrina; she knew that look. She then turned her gaze to Tiffaney, eyeing her speculatively. "I don't suppose you'd be interested in a position here? The sexy scientist look is pretty popular lately."

"Just a nibble?" Katrina interrupted.

Lola waved the broom threateningly at Katrina. "No biting. Same as I tell your catboy."

Katrina meeped and tried to clean with out interrupting her oogling.

Tiffaney waved her hand in front of her face. "I'm sorry, but I'm not much of a dancer, and I'm not good with stages."

Lola nodded, sighing softly. "A shame. I figured that anyone able to sneak up on Lucius like that would be able to move pretty well. And, if you don't mind..." She made shooing motions with her broom, steering the two off to the side so the dancers could take to the stage.

Tiffaney hastily moved in the direction she was being shooed at. "Have a good show. " She said with a smile as the girls began to take to the stage.

Katrina somehow managed to smack the asses off several of the dancers even through they were plainly out of reach.

Lola sighed, before heading up on stage with the dancers. "That girl is trouble..."

Katrina grinned proudly.

"I think I figured that out by experience." Tiffaney said with a sigh.


Summary:

Tiffaney is super sneaky, and sneaks up on Lucius.
She wants his body, and not in the way he thinks.He eventually gets it.
Tiffaney and Lucius debate letting her cut him open for study.
Lucius trips and Tiffaney pounces. Surprisingly heavy, she is.
Lucius donnae need upgrades!
Lusius is immune to wibbles?! NOOOOOOOO!!!
Tiffaney has ethics! Wait. She took X-Rays of Lucius while he slept?
Lucius hands Tiffaney his flask, and she heads off to study it.

Lucius decides to take a nap in his office.
Tiffaney sneaks in, and pokes his cheek to be sure he's asleep. Struggle-less blood sample!
Waking up Lucius.
Being immortal doesn't mean you always need to be in harm's way, Lucius.
Ear scritches and a talk on how Whisp and Devin are doing.
Lucius suggests that Tiffaney ask Skorpion out. A bit of convincing and Tiffaney agrees.
A missed reference before Tiffaney goes to drop off the kids.

Tiffaney follows Lucius home, and watches him from across the road.
He's not alone this time.
Tiffaney tries to think of a way for Lucius to let her study him as he showers.
Lucius goes to Katrina who pulls him on to the couch.
Tiffaney immediately loses interest, and goes to wait in her car.

A bit of stalking and Tiffaney gets to observe a wild Scotsman feeding.
Lucius hears something, jumps to an alleyway, smacks down some thugs, and rescues a catgirl.

Lucius arrives at the CATastrophe club and Tiffaney follows him inside.
She really isn't dressed for the occasion.
Tiffaney is motionless in a crowd of excited viewers.

The show ends and Lucius goes backstage for a nap.
Where Tiffaney follows him.
Face-poke test stirs Lucius into half awareness. Brief panic.
A wild Katrina appears, and promptly messes with Tiffaney.
Katrina mentions an arrangement she had with Lucius concerning fangirls.
Tiffaney misunderstands, before Katrina realizes what Tiffaney meant.
Katrina too, is opposed to Lucius being dissected.
Lucius awakens to answer the calling of kinky sex... Only there's none going on.
Tiffaney offers upgrades and Katrina's mind is in the gutter as per the norm, and she requests Tiffaney to give Lucius two.
Tiffaney's mind is not in the gutter as more misunderstandings arise.
Lucius voices an opinion and neither of them listen.
Give Lucius two of them?
More unnoticed protesting from Lucius.
Lucius sneaks off while Katrina distracts Tiffaney with dirty talk.
With Lucius gone Katrina offers Tiffaney a proposition.
Tiffaney insists on not until a nerve is accidentally struck.
Temporary lack of emotional self control.
Tiffaney gives up on dissecting Lucius.

Hi Lola!
Katrina's still pervy.
Bye Lola!
http://overkillgi.deviantart.com/art/Al ... illgi&qo=1
"I heard you like bullets. So i put some bullets, in my bullets, so I can shoot'cha... While I shoot'cha!"
<<

ArsenalXA4

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Posts: 61

Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2014 9:09 pm

Post Wed Oct 22, 2014 10:22 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

Title: Reformatting Part 1
Location: Black Site Fukushima
Characters: Major Wylder, CW01 Anie Sims, Carbine, additional, nonessential personnel
Authors: ArsenalXA4, Oblivion


Anie was a mechanical genius when it came to the ambulatory systems of Lancers, most especially the YLM-27. She knew the hydraulic systems, the gyros, the weight management and distribution systems, all of it. But Carbine's systems had her counfounded.

"Well, boy, I am gonna admit defeat here." she said to the AI, wiping lubricant from her hands. "I can't figure your leg assemblies out to give you the needed mobility you're lacking."

"I am unsurprised. I cannot recall much of my creator, but he, or she has much knowledge in AI as well as animatronics." Carbine said as he watched Anie. "Maybe if you were twenty feet taller and a couple thousands pounds heavier. Like in a Lancer shell." she mused. "Now I feel like the original engineers who tried workin' on the super prototype when they first found it." Anie rose and stretched, popping her back then her neck. "At least they had thirty years of computer development to fall back on. Me, I ain't got that luxury."

"Luxury can be made." Hayden said as he made his way into Anie's work area, dragging a stereo with him. "Like how we made a sofa with sandbags and plywood at FOB Rhino."

"I was there when you did that, Sarge. I do hope you have something productive to bring. I'm outta options here." Hayden set the stereo down and pushed past the tech rep, peering at Carbine.

"Have you checked the headlight fluid? Or maybe the air tires? That's usually where power's generated." he joked.

"Really funny, sarge..." Hayden stepped back from Carbine and light a cigar, putting the match out and tossing it away. "I have an idea but I need to run it past the Major AND Agent MacIntire and he is not gonna like it." Anie said as she gave Carbine another once over.

"And what plan is that?" Carbine asked as his tail picked up a stray tool and placed it near Anie. "You dropped this."

"Uploading you into a Lancer."

"Yeah, MacIntire is not gonna let you bring another body here." Hayden mused, plugging the stereo in.

"It'd be simple. Just upload him to a dummy CABAL and be done with it. All we'd need is a test pilot." she suggested. The CABAL cores that housed Lancer AIs came in two flavors: a learning version for combat purposes and a dummy core for use as an Unmanned Weapons Platform. The latter were used to train Mech Killers at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin where the US Army's Mech Killer school was. Test pilots from General Dynamics and Lockheed Martin installed the basics in the AIs in order to make combat engagements as realistic as possible.

"Like that isn't going to end badly. I've seen... Come to think of it I don't think there's actually an instance in pop culture that I can reference where this sort of thing happened..." he mused. "Unless you consider Patlabor Abridged."

"Yeah, no... After you made me watch Reign Abridged, no. Hell no." Anie said, turning to leave. "I'mma talk to the Major an' Mac. Just don't break anything while I'm gone, okay."

"Yeah, yeah... Shit..." Hayden swore. He then looked at Carbine. "So, how ya feelin' there, buddy? Other than the obvious."

"Confused as to where we were located." Carbine answered briefly, taking time to examine the room for what must have been the fiftyith time.

"Not sure I should tell you..." the sniper said, taking a drag on his cigar then blowing smoke rings. "The Major didn't tell us when we got word. He just said 'pack up and go.' Kinda like a running cadence of ours, except without a C-130."

"It sounds as though he does not trust you." Carbine observed as he took a deck of cards that had been placed nearby and began to build a pyramid out of them.

"There's this thing called OPSEC. Operational Security. There's an old saying that dates back to World War II: 'Loose lips sink ships.'" Hayden replied, fiddling with the stereo's power cable. "A place like this, Black Site Fukushima, does not exist. Officially, any way. Unofficially, it's a dormitory for GE employees. But you didn't hear that from me..."

"I feel your unit would operate more smoothly under a type of hive mind. Having access to the thoughts, sights, sounds, and smells of your allies could prove useful in any combat scenario, though I know you humans desire 'privacy'." Carbine retorted as he continued to build his pyramid.

"Don't forget individuality. 'I am an Army of One!' was the saying after the good old 'Be All You Can Be.' An attempt to promote individuality." Hayden countered, taking out a multitool and popping the back of the stereo off. "Yeah, a hive mind would help unit cohesion but when it's time to pack up, when the work day is done, then what? Unit Cohesion is built through interacting with the others in said unit."

"Take Pash, for instance. Guy's still kinda green, socially awkward, barely knows his ass from a hole in the ground, but I'll be damned if he ain't a quick study. Can a hive mind do that? Develop interpersonal relationships?"

"I feel I could argue, if I had any memory of past experiences to go off of." Carbine responded. "Though I do enjoy the company you humans provide. I find your unpredictability amusing."

"Unpredictability and variety is the spice of life. Take it away and what do you have?" he paused to take another drag on his cigar as he fiddled with the inner workings of the stereo. "I almost wanna say it'd be like the world as depicted in 'The Giver,' but I have a distinct feeling that the reference may be lost on you."

"It is. Can you tell me of your Commander?" Carbine asked as he places the last card on his pyramid, scanning it's structural integrity.

"Major Wylder is a cold man. Quiet, professional, and competent." Hayden replied. "He was Green Berets before he became an Armored Infantryman then came to us. But now a lot of things make more sense."

"See, in Iraq and Afghanistan we'd always get these weird ops. Most guys would have patrols and hearts and minds jobs. We, 15th Armored Infantry, would be doing Counterinsurgency and High Value Target hunts, often with minimal support. It makes more sense to me knowing that he's a Company man."

"I take it you look up to this man?" Carbine asked as he shifted his attention from the card pyramid.

"He lets me get away with a lot of shit, mostly during ops. I get looser Rules of Engagement compared to everyone else because I've been the platoon shepherd. And not in a safeguard way, I mean in a 'kill-anyone-leaving-the-AO-that-isn't-broadcasting-a-friendly-IFF-signature' kind of way." he replied, putting the stereo back together then flipping the switch. It began to broadcast a local station, playing J-Pop. "No, that ain't gonna work..."

"You dislike modern popular music in Japan?" Carbine asked as he sat up to the best of his ability, his claws tapping on the table as he did so.

"I dislike pop music in general." he said, turning the dial and getting static. "I am more of an old school person. Classic Rock in particular..."

Still like that old time rock and roll
That kind of music just soothes the soul
I reminisce about the days of old
With that old time rock and roll!


"Oh, now we're talking!" Hayden rejoiced, Bob Seeger's sound filling the work area. "This is more to my liking."

Carbine watched Hayden with curiosity. "So this is 'classic rock'?" He asked, rather wishing he could walk.

"It sure as hell is. Consider this your introduction to rock. First case study: Bob Seeger." Hayden started. "Included in this tutorial will be the likes of Credence Clearwater Revival, the Almond Brothers, Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, and a host of others. It's gonna be fun."

"Absolutely not. You, the doc, and the shrink are here because it's a necessity." Agent MacIntyre said as Anie led him and Major Wylder to where Carbine and Hayden were. "There's already twenty more people here who don't need to be here. One more is straining it."

"The guy I have in mind is cleared. All Test Pilots go through rigorous selection an' vetting processes before SDI considers them." Anie countered. Then she saw the pyramid. "Sarge, whisky tango foxtrot."

"Weren't me." Hayden said, pointing at Carbine. "He did it."

"Is it's structural integrity compromised?" Carbine asked as he once more scanned the pyramid.

"I see he's creative." Jenks observed. "Now, Anie, is there any other option?"

"No sir. Carbine's construction is way beyond me. Whoever threw him together is a fuckin' genius." she said. "I can't put him back together, but we could give him another body."

"No. Not just no, but hell no, fuck no, and hell the fuck no, I call shenannigans on that bullshit." MacIntyre replied. "If you need a Big Dog I'll have Miner 'procure' one from the Corps."

"Ain't gonna work. This boy here is more advanced than that robot pack mule. 'Sides, I wanna see how he does as a biped." Anie said with a smile on her face. MacIntyre threw his hands up.

"Fine... But I ain't gonna like it and Mr. Clancy certainly ain't gonna like it either. Furthermore, if something goes wrong, and that tin can's manipulators are all over it, then I am personally throwing him into the trash compactor and stripping him for parts." MacIntyre threatened.

"Carbine, y'hear that? Best behave yourself." Hayden suggested.

"Bark, arf arf. Pant pant pant." Carbine said sarcastically as he lackidasically wagged his tail to mock being a 'good dog'.

"Oh, that fuckin' tears it..." Mac swore, pulling a pair of Tonfa batons from his belt. Major Wylder held him back.

"He's learning 'humanity.'" Hayden said. "Says he likes our unpredictability. Apparently it's amusing."

"Amusing my ass. You get that mutt on a leash and keep him on it." Mac said, sliding the batons back into their respectful holders on his web belt. "I will make good on my threat. That tank-like, what's his name, he's as good as any trash compactor." That said Agent MacIntyre took his leave, swearing as he went.

"Anie, how long will it take you to get that pilot and a machine out here?" Jenks asked.

"Gonna be a couple days. I do have a pilot and machine in mind." she replied. The Major simply nodded then left. Hayden reached over and pat Carbine.

"Hear that, buddy, you're gonna get some legs. Two legs, but better than nothing."

"Was my 'humor' unsatisfactory?" Carbine asked, tilting his head to the side to mimic body language for curiosity. "And it would be nice to be able to walk again."

"I think it's more cuz Mac is an authoritarian like Top Khukov." Hayden replied. "A stickler for the rules. Funny considering he was one of the Dreaded D."

Carbine returned to laying down on the table, being careful not to knock over his pyramid. "Pardon me, but remaining in a sitting up position is difficult with only one operable leg. I hope I haven't added any unnecessary difficulty to what you are trying to achieve."

"Ehh, what's the worst that can happen to me? I go to GITMO?" Anie suggested. "Maybe I'd finally get to catch up on my reading. Either way, sit tight. Gonna be a while before we get you that new body."
"'We have the technology. We can rebuild him!'" Hayden quoted.

"Actually, you don't have the technology and couldn't rebuild me, therefore you have decided to move me to a new body as a means to hide the issue under a metaphoricle table: so to speak." Carbine corrected.

"Semantics, Carbine. Semantics." Hayden countered. "Though I wonder, could we get him in a Tetrapod?"

"I'm a tech rep for General Dynamics Land Warfare Systems. The Tetrapods are ArmsTek Warfare Systems." she said. "They make all those peculiar mobility designs, except the Carnotaur." The LM-7 Carnotaurus sastrei was a medium biped and the only conventional lancer built by ATWS. They were better known for the LM-45/42 Chasmosaurus russelli/belli tank-likes and LM-21 Alamosaurus sanjuanenses tetrapods.

"Though that would be interesting gettin' him a Tetrapod."

"Yes it would be..." Hayden replied, putting his cigar out on his boot sole.

"Indeed..."

Outside of the hangar Convoy stood on the tarmac, facing the sea. He could observe a large cargo ship moored offshore. Zooming in showed it to be a Panamanian flagged ship named the Maersk California. Were anyone to run the ship's identification they would in fact find it to be owned by the Maersk line out of Copenhagen. However it was a front, as nearly every dummy corporation tied to the Company was. The Maersk California was a much modified Triple E class container ship, with part of the cargo hold converted into a hangar deck for VTOLs and helicopters. There was a hidden well deck for deployment of small boats, Submersible Diver Delivery Craft and even accomodation for two Mk 68 mod 4 Mososaurus hoffmani submarine Lancers, on loan from the US Navy.

"Y'know that ship ain't gonna do tricks the longer you stare at it." Dani said as she walked up behind Convoy. He turned to look at her over his shoulder then back at the ship.

"I'm aware of that. However the ship is not my concern." he replied, the super prototype standing next to him.

"Yeah? What's got the processor goin' now? Still hung up on that tussle with the meat?"

"In a manner of speaking." he said, turning to fully face Dani. "I fail to understand how it is the humans could throw themselves into our fields of fire the way they did, fully seeing what we were doing to them and yet."

"Just like Johnny Jihad in Iraquistan, except slant eyed and yellow." Dani replied, crossing two lines at once. "They blow up the same."

"Yes, and with the same fanatical devotion."

"This must really have you, big bot. I just used two racial slurs and you didn't even bat an optic. You sure you're feelin' okay? Run any defrags or antivirals lately?"

"Six times on the antivirals, four defrags, including one I'm running right now." he replied. "There are a few questions unanswered as well."

"The humans had RPGs and MANPADS. And those rocket launchers. I looked at the UAV feeds. Those were older Type 75 rocket launchers mounted to trucks, replaced in JSDF service by the M-270 MLRS. How would an angry mob get hands on such weaponry?"

"So someone's supplying them. That ain't our concern. Leave that shit to the Major."

"I want to, yet it pops up on my processor every time I attempt to refile it."

"Don't dwell on it, big bot." Dani said, patting his shoulder plate. "And while I have your attention, I was a bit out of line that day. I was kinda chompin' at the bit."

"I did nothing to contribute to that battle. You and the others shouldered the rest of the burden." he replied, looking back to the ocean.

"'Evil triumphs when good men do nothing.' comes to mind. I did nothing to stem the tide, to lessen the loss of life."

"You tried less lethal, big bot. That failed and you know it." Dani paused, her processor trying and nearly overclocking as she tried to come up with something vaguely compassionate. "Okay, that was a kinda damaged thing to say, but you know very well that I was right."

"You were 'painfully right' as I recall you stating. I need to learn from your lack of compassion if we're deployed again." he said. "However I believe it will be a long time before that ever happens."

"Yeah, turning an angry mob into chunky salsa without our pilots in control kinda puts the kibosh on any future deployments. Army or not." she said with a sigh, emulating the sound as best she could with her PA. "Almost makes me wish we were going to Iraq again. I'd love to put the fear of god into ISIS."

"Agreed. That is one group of humans I have no qualms about rending limb from limb." If only I had the same feelings regarding the Japanese humans we fought. he didn't say.

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Summary
-Anie admits defeat in trying to rebuild Carbine's legs.
-Hayden arrives and provides a solution.
-Anie goes to pitch the idea to the Major and Mac.
-Carbine builds a card tower while Hayden fiddles with a broken boombox.
-Philosphical debate and Classic Rock.
-Do you think this is a motherfucking game, Carbine?
-A debate among AIs.
-Convoy is hung up on the events of SHTF.
-Dani attempts to console him, at the risk of overclocking her processor.
-Convoy has questions.

Meanwhile...
Somewhere in Saitama District...


"<...then he says he wants the dossiers on six American naval officers, a Marine colonel, and an Army Captain. I could understand when it was just one Brigadier General and a Major, but that laundry list?>" Shigeru Kusanagi said to his wife, Ayane, as she did the dishes and he ironed a uniform shirt.

"<He's just doing his job. Isn't that was he's supposed to do?>" she asked, scrubbing a pot down with a scouring brush.

"<Now I think he's just taking it overboard. I just want to do my time in admin then go back to the infantry. Is that too much to ask?>"

"<Most people would want to stay in admin instead of doing grunt work.>" Ayane remarked as she put the pot to dry and started on the utensils.

"<Dad was infantry. Grandpa was infantry. Granted it was a different time and the focus of the Japanese military then was... kinda imperial... Yeah... But still, he was infantry.>" He was about to continue when the doorbell rang. "<I got it.>" Shigeru hung his shirt up and turned the iron off, going to the door as the bell rang a second time. "<Hang on, hang on...> Baka..." He opened the door and was surprised at what he found.

"<You're not Cousin Ayane...>" Eikichi said as he and Shigeru made eye contact. He had a growth of beard, his hair was slightly dishevelled, and his clothes could have used a trip to the washing machine.

"<Honey, were you expecting company?>" Shigeru shouted to her, very confused and fearing for his life. He'd never been this close to an American before, especially one of those Blackwater Operators he had read about.

Eikichi had found his family.

It only took him two days.

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Summary
-Lieutenant Kusanagi complains about Major Watanabe to his wife.
-He hates admin and is one in a long line of infantry.
-Suddenly, an American!
-Ei's a captain. Jokes about land nav and Lieutenants no long apply. Except because he can't read Kanji and couldn't get his bearings then he's fair game.
Image
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Saeriva

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Posts: 13

Joined: Fri Mar 14, 2014 9:52 pm

Location: In a mitten

Post Fri Oct 31, 2014 12:53 am

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

Title: Now It Reveals It's Hidden Side, But That's Ryokan, Not Ryokan
Timestamp: Sometime between From Far-Flung Shores and Lola Rent
Location: A pretty darn nice ryokan outside the Tokyo ANFs
Characters: Howell and Lenore (a.k.a: Lady Not Appearing in This Thread)
Author: Saeriva

It was too late in the summer for there to be blossoms on the trees, but their absence was the only thing keeping the scenery from being the postcard-perfect representation of a traditional Japanese inn.
"Ryokan," Lenore corrected her thoughts outloud and to absolutely no-one, as the other futons scattered about the floor lay vacant. That was what Aneko had called it, and had scolded Howell when he didn't trill the 'r' well enough. "Ryooooookaaaaaan," she murmured, rolling the sound around in her mouth before rolling on to her knees and off the bed.

Sliding aside the rice paper door with a delicate wooden thunk, she passed into the equally tatami-lined room adjacent. With a newspaper spread across the lone, low table, Howell sat on the floor aside a yunomi mug filed with coffee, from the smell of it. He was exactly where she had expected him to be, doing exactly as he always did. He was strange in his sameness; here, there, back at home... Like the center of a carousel, Howell was a stationary point unaffected by the changing scenery. Lenore blinked around the empty room.

"Where is everybody?"

"I have no idea where Tschim went," he answered from behind the newsprint, "and Aneko took Lola into the city, to meet some of her children."

"I thought they were all dead."

"Apparently not. Not that being dead necessarily means anything."

"No, I'm right," Lenore nodded to herself, with a tone of voice that was thoughtfully distant rather than argumentative. "Some of them are definitely dead, anyway. Allanon is dead. He had great hair. And Natsumi, too, probably. Oh, and there was somebody else, too, I think? "

Howell hummed in response, a deep and heavy sound that drew her attention. He was no longer looking at his newspaper. Howell's eyes were fixed (but clearly not focused) at a space very near Lenore's feet in a way that made her relatively certain he wasn't seeing anything. He was making those wrinkles with his eyes he sometimes did. It was a look instinctualy familiar to her, but not one she liked.

"That must be hard very hard for her."

"Why?" Lenore asked in genuine curiosity. "It happened like a million years ago."

"How long ago it happened doesn't really matter," he shrugged, and filled the gap in his thoughts by slipping the readers from his nose. "When something bad happens to people you love, it hurts. And when it's your children... Well, that hurt never really goes away. It just sits there. If you're lucky, you sort of learn to live around it, but it's always there."

"Howell?" she asked in uncharacteristic quiet. "Does that happen to you?"

"Yes."

"Even though it happened a million years ago?"

"Even so."

"Even though everything's fine now?"

"Uh-huh."

"Are we talking about me?" she asked suddenly, and Howell's head shot up.

"What? Yes, of course. Who else would I be taking about?"

Lenore crossed her arms in front of her chest, puffing in indignity, but when she dropped her eyes to the side, a secret wound winked through as she grumbled her answer; "Lola."
Howell just laughed, but only in that way where he could without actually making a sound. The laugh stayed in the corners of his mouth, and it made the wrinkles in his face evaporate.

"Come here," he said, and Lenore was at the table beside him before Howell even folded the paper away. "Look," he sighed, "I know things have been different ever since Eloise joined us, and its been difficult learning to share my attention."

This Lenore could certainly agree with, and did so by puffing out her cheeks like a perturbed fugu.

"Don't be like that," he laughed with his eyes again, "I'm saying that I'm proud of how good you've been about it. I know this trip has been difficult for you, since we've been focusing on Lola so much."

"What's she all upset about, anyway?" she asked with a pout. "Just 'cause Shiri's dead?"

"Lola is still little, she doesn't really understand how death works... Not that this is a very straightforward example," Howell admitted. "She's lonely, and she doesn't understand why we can't explain where Shiri went, or why, or even if he's coming back."

"But why's she lonely? There's still like a million other people around."

"Would you be lonely if I was gone?" he asked in lieu of an answer. "Even though you'd still have Aneko and auntie and everyone else back home?"

Lenore knotted her eyebrows. It was a strange question, and she couldn't seem to bring herself to come up with an answer. Every time she attempted to repeat the question in her mind, her thoughts came up blank. She was concentrating so intently, she didn't even notice her knuckles were white until Howell covered them with his palm.

"That's kind of how Lola feels right now," he continued, "and I think Aneko does, too, even though she hasn't said anything."

"How can you tell?"

"I can't, really," Howell admitted. "I'm making an educated guess."

"There's a word for that."

"Hypothesis," he nodded, "yes. I hypothesize that Aneko feels kind of the same way Lola does."

That made a certain kind of sense. After all, if his daughter was sad, then Shiri's sister should be too. Howell was the one who generally understood these kind of things, so she simply shrugged and let him continue to pat the back of her hand until she wasn't gripping her fingers so tightly.

"Lenore," he began gently, "I wonder if you could do something for me." Lenore canted her head to him, a cue for Howell to continue. "I want you to be as nice to the two of them as you can be. They're both very sad right now, so you need to treat them gently. Maybe give Lola some space? Don't pick on her, if you can help it, and stick with Aneko when she's around. I think she'll feel better the more she has people around who care about her. Could you do all that?"

Lenore hummed thoughtfully. "Yeah," she shrugged, "I guess so."

"Thank you, I'm sure you'll do a good job. Here, I'll tell you what," he added brightly, "you and I have been cooped up in the hotel for long enough. Why don't you brush your hair and get dressed and we'll find a place to have Auntie Monica's old kimono repaired."

"And shop for souvenirs?" Lenore asked with a pleading hope at the edge of her voice.

"Well, I think the others would be disappointed if we did the actual shopping without them," Howell let down gently, "but we have a lot of people to shop for, so we can look around. Maybe find a place to go back to when everyone's together."

Instead of responding, Lenore merely puffed out her cheeks in a pout.

"Oh, come on now," he chastised, in the least chastising voice possible. "You go on and clean up, I'm going to check on Lola and try to find Tsch."

"I can get your box," she offered, "or some bandages."

"Thank you for offering, but I can manage. Go on and get ready," Howell said before nodding back to the adjoining room, "I'll be done by the time you are."

"You should really learn how to use a cell phone, they're faster because you don't have to clean anything after you use it."

"We have had this talk," Howell heaved. "You know I don't like those things. Besides, you only want me to have one so you can play games on it." He was right, so Lenore shrugged sheepishly. "The way I do things is just fine, " he continued, and turned to withdraw a box from the luggage behind him.

Said box was as thick as a dictionary and nearly twice the length, with Howell's initials burned into the wooden lid three fingers beneath the handles. Lenore watched him open the shiny brass clasps with a flick of his thumbs, as she had a thousand times. He kept any number of things in that box: tubes of paint and brushes made of sable's fur, cups and starch and strips of muslin to paste his papers flat against a wooden board so the edges wouldn't curl and some things that were far more fantastic than that.

"Go on," he insisted, retrieving some fantastic thing Lenore could hardly see beneath the table, but was sharp and black and covered with markings she'd never been able to make out. "I know how long you can take to get ready."

"I do not."

"You do," he corrected, and to end that conversation, quickly added; "If you don't get a move on, I'm going to let Tschim pick where we go for lunch."

"But she doesn't even eat!" Lenore protested, nearly squeaking in dismay.

"She can if she wants too, and if you want to have any say otherwise then you better get going."

The warning struck hard, and it sent Lenore to her feet and through to the adjoining room in a hurry. Forgoing her luggage (which was really only there for show anyway, as Howell had insisted she pack something for the plane trip), she pried up a corner of the futon to reveal her sketchbook right where she had left it the night prior. Sliding it free, Lenore proceeded to flip through pages and allowed the mattress to hit the tatami with a heavy flop. She paused long enough to remove a short-sleeved blouse of thin cream tulle and eyelet lace from the pages of her sketchbook, followed by a tiered jumper skirt in a pale rose linen... Both of which she unceremoniously pulled over her bed-rustled hair.

After a petticoat, a pair of ankle-length stockings and the laborious effort required to tame her nearly thigh-length hair into trademark twin braids, Lenore appeared back in the room with the lacquer table after a thunk from the sliding rice door.

"That was quick," Howell smiled from the table. He was sitting much where he had been, but now was rolling his sleeves down over fresh bindings around his wrists. The box with his initials on the lid had disappeared.

"You look cute." The voice came from the shadows at the corners of her vision, and of course Lenore jumped. Tschim was there behind her smiling when Lenore turned around.

“Were you there the whole time?" she asked, "Or did you just get there?"

"Yes."

"Lola's fine," interjected Howell, as he rose to his feet. "If you're ready, we can get going."

Without further prodding, Lenore hooked a pair of enamel t-strap shoes from her sketch book and burst from the rooms into the hallway. Pausing long enough to ensure that the two adults were following her, Lenore scampered down the wooden halls and out on to the streets.



Summary:
Lenore and Howell hang out an unnamed ryoukan while Eloise and Aneko fraternize with the locals.
Lenore admits she doesn’t understand why everyone’s so sad and Howell does his best to explain how feelings work.
Howell shoos her off to get changed while he checks in on Eloise and calls Tschim back so the three can do lunch in as vague a manner as possible.
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DarkTan

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Posts: 100

Joined: Fri Feb 28, 2014 11:14 pm

Post Mon Nov 03, 2014 11:54 am

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

Crescent Rose and Crimson Clothes...

Location: the Manor
TimeStamp: Right after that one thing happened, but before the next thing does.
Characters: Mimi, Whisp, Devin, the MACs, Tiffaney
Authors: Elle, DarkTan, O-Ring

The roar of the Barracuda echoed off the building as the former MTD officer rocketed towards her destination. The sound of the exhaust was accompanied by the thumping bass of a techno beat as she took a turn without slowing, the tail end kicking out before straightening. A few more similar turns and she slid the old muscle car into a parking space in front of the front door of the Manor.

Mimi opened the door and swung a black denim clad leg out, her crunching the gravel. She climbed out, dropped her cigarette butt and stepped on it with her other leg. She pulled on a light coat over her and started up the steps to the door. Mimi looked at the handle before opening it, as if regarding it for the first time. She sighed and pulled it open.

"Are you sure you don't have anything less bulky for footwear? I could hear you walking even if I was human." Said a mechanical voice from a nearby hallway. "And perhaps an outfit that is less... Flashy. The point of stealth is not to be seen. Also, you should avoid kicking inanimate objects and swearing around your target."

"But I like these boots," Whisp's familiar voice could be heard objecting, rather sulkily; presumably, her stealth lessons were not going very well. "And my purple Ruby outfit is awesome! And the Manor totally deserved it."

"What you like doesn't matter when avoiding detection."

"Wearing my awesome purple Ruby outfit always matters, especially when training," the teen argued, needing no more reason than awesomeness to justify herself.

Mimi, having heard a good bit of the conversation, chose that moment to soundlessly step out of a shadow behind Whisp, "Boo."

This, of course, resulted in a rather (embarrassingly) girly shriek as the teen whirled around in surprise, instinctively lashing out with her magic to send the intruder flying down the hall - something that was fully expected by Mimi, who stepped back into the shadow to let the force pass her by, before stepping back out.

"Is that any way to treat the person who introduced you to ice cream?" Mimi put her hands on her hips and looked at Whisp with a mock judgmental expression.

"Mimi!" Whisp merely declared with excitement, making some movement that suggested at a possible instinct to hug the woman, held in check by a lifetime of avoiding physical contact with people coupled with confusion at the strange impulse.

"Nice to see you too," Mimi smiled, "Who were you talking to though?" Mimi looked down the hallway.

"Ghost," the teen replied, glancing down beside her, only to find the giant robot puppy had disappeared again. "Ghost!" she scolded, sounding mildly annoyed. "Stop being invisible, you have to meet Mimi!"

Mimi, having been to the Manor before, and the Cave of Evil before that, was not surprised to find Whisp was conversing with ghosts, or by the fact that they enjoyed hide and seek. "I`m sure he`ll come out eventually," Mimi assured the teen, "Probably at the most inopportune time."

Nevertheless, when Ghost failed to reappear, Whisp propped her hands on her hips and scolded, "Bad puppy! Mimi needs to know who you are, so she doesn't use her cool shadowy magic on you. Also, I'm pretty sure you're being rude." She would have to ask Dev's mom to be sure, but she was pretty confident she was right.

It was then that Low Vis decided to appear behind Mimi, using the appendages on his tail to make it appear to Whisp as though she had a pair of small robo-bunny ears, causing the teen to frown her disapproval (while also trying very hard not to giggle).

"And that's definitely rude!" she rather triumphantly declared (pleased to actually know for sure, for once). "Now be a good puppy and come meet Mimi, or I'll tell Dev. Or his mom." Whisp was definitely feeling pleased with herself for thinking of such a good threat.

Low Vis disappeared momentarily before reappearing by Whisp's side. "Greetings, Shadow Walker." He said before sitting down; Whisp promptly rewarded him with a few pats on the head.

Mimi looked at the large mechanical wolf that appeared before her, "And hello to you too..."

"I have been designated the names Low Vis and Ghost, feel free to choose which one you wish to address me by." Low Vis said as his claws retracted for him to offer a paw for a shake.

"Ghost seems to fit you," Mimi leaned over a bit to accept the mechanical paw, "You're new here."

"Or maybe I've been here the whole time." Low Vis responded as a joke. "Flickering lights and closing doors."

"No, that was definitely the Manor," Mimi stuck her tongue out at the mechanized canine.

"Ghost usually adds Slender Man sound effects, which is kinda more effective," Whisp admitted. It also tended to result in her and Dev sleeping together.

"Slender who?" Mimi asked, a puzzled look on her face.

"Slender Man," Whisp repeated; it took her a moment for the truth to sink in. Mimi had never heard of Slender Man. Once it did sink in, her amethyst eyes grew wide and she was suddenly hurrying down the hallway calling (very loudly), "DEEEEEEV! MIMI HASN'T SEEN SLENDER MAN" Because clearly this was an emergency.

Low Vis followed after her, being sure to message Devin before Whisp reached earshot of his room.

Meanwhile, in the garage that Devin had claimed as his workshop, he had been working on a secret project that not even I can write about, but here's a hint it starts with- "Get to the point." Devin said with evident frustration to his author. Right. Anyway, he was working on that when his phone went off with a message from Low Vis. He grabbed the phone and read over it before walking to a near table and grabbing the Crescent Rose he had been working on before hand, along with a decent sized case, and walking to the nearest door to open it and walk through.

He was promptly greeted by a hug that almost counted as a glomp as Whisp caught sight of him. "Dev!" she declared happily, before adding, "Mimi hasn't seen Slender Man!"

"Who?" Devin then asked as he adjusted the scythe-rifle to avoid any cutting. "Regardless, I've finished your Crescent Rose, and the ammo is in this case." He said as he half raised the case he was carrying.

With Devin in sight Low Vis promptly faded from view, to watch the three of them interact.

Whisp made a sound that might well have been an excited squeal, hugging first Dev and then her awesome new weapon, coming dangerously close to bouncing on her heels, before turning to show it off to Mimi, declaring, "I have a Crescent Rose!" as though that should sufficiently explain everything.

"It looks more like a scythe and rifle had a baby," Mimi responded as she eyed the weapon, "But a very nice one at that." It was then Mimi noticed the cat-boy following her, "Oho, a friend?" She put an odd emphasis on the word.

"This is Dev," the teen girl actually managed to remember to introduce. "Dev, this is Mimi - she's really cool, and she took me out for ice cream before!"

Mimi extended her hand to Devin, "Nice to meet you."

Devin eyed the hand suspiciously for a moment before accepting it in silence.

Mimi was used to the silent, brooding types, being a Mihoist and what have you, and just shook his hand and gave a slight nod of her head. "Well, I have some news for you Whisp," she said.

"Are we going for ice cream again?" Whisp rather absently wanted to know, still hugging and cooing over her Crescent Rose.

"Well," Mimi paused, "I don't see why we couldn't. But that wasn't it. I've retired. Sorta."

"So..." Whisp had to think about this a bit, not being overly familiar with the concept of work, let alone retirement (the Instigators' retirement plan was death, after all, and Mimi was definitely not dead). "Does that mean you'll have time to visit more?" she finally asked, brightening a bit at the thought.

"You can work for me if you want. The business isn't exactly real, but the work is." Devin offered after seeing an opportunity to gain a person to make the dreaded trips to the front door to pick up packages for him.

Mimi snorted as she tried not to laugh, "Sorry Dev, I've found a... hobby to occupy my time," She turned to Whisp, "Yes I probably will. In fact that's something I'll need to talk to Saeko about as well. I don't imagine I'll be keeping my apartment without a steady income."

"You underestimated me just now, didn't you?" Devin pointed to the Crescent Rose. "I built that, and four other variations of Low Vis."

Mimi quirked an eye brow, "Did you now..." She crossed her arms and tapped her chin thoughtfully as she looked at the weapon again, "You and I may be chatting again."

"As the CEO of a military grade manufacturer I can supply you any tools, weapons, or devices you could need, and with you being a friend of Whisp; I can provide you with a discount." Devin stated factually, feeling slightly better now that he no longer felt he was being underestimated.

Mimi looked at Whisp with a sparkle in her eye, "I think I like your new friend."

"Of course you do," the teen girl rather absently remarked, as though such a thing was clearly inevitable (because he was Dev, and how could anyone not like Dev). Then an idea occurred to her. "You could stay here, if you want." And then they could go out for ice cream all the time! With Mimi driving!

"I'd have to talk with Saeko about that first," Mimi replied, "And the Manor itself of course."

"The Manor says it's cool," Whisp promptly informed; whether she actually knew this or was just saying it not even her author knew for sure.

"And my opinion never matters when it comes to occurrences around the Manor." Devin stated like the fact it was.

"Well this is no mere occurrence," Mimi wagged a finger at Devin, "You get a say too."

"Of course you get a say!" Whisp encouraged, though something in her tone seemed to suggest he was fully expected to agree with her.

Devin shrugged. "I'm fine with it, just really wish she would've taken the job. These trips to the front door are getting progressively longer."

This, of course, was followed by Whisp glaring up at the ceiling. "Bad Manor! Stop being mean to Dev!" She also gave the wall a good kick with her booted foot, for good measure.

"You know, I don't think that actually helps anyway," Mimi noted.

"It'll learn," the teen girl insisted, more than a little stubbornly.

"Riiight," Mimi said with a roll of her eyes.

"If you're staying here then I need to warn you. If you wander into a garage with various machinations, that is my workshop, and some of my projects are volatile." Devin pulled out his phone and tapped at it a bit before pocketing it once more. "And I am not legally liable for any accidents that may or may not occur in my absence... In short, look, don't touch."

"What are you working on?" the ever-curious Whisp wanted to know.

"It's a secret for now, but it'll be making headlines soon enough." Devin said, his tail giving a pleased catlike sway.

Mimi quirked her eyebrow at that, "You do realize who you just told that too right?"

Needless to say, Whisp was already trying to sneak around him to peek in the door. Because secret.

Devin pulled a remote from his hoodie pocket and pushed a button, causing the door to close (and Whisp to kick it, before proceeding to sulk). "I do, and it's going to be fun."

Mimi chuckled at that. These two were going to be amusing.

The look in Whisp's eyes rather suggested she was already plotting a way in to discover the secret, even as she continued to sulk.

"So, Mimi. I take it you perform magic as well?" Devin said in an attempt to gain knowledge on the person in front of him.

"Not sure if it falls under the category," Mimi replied, "I got my powers from the 'Wombicon. I control shadows."

"Noted, anything else worth knowing?" Devin then asked as he returned the remote to his pocket.

"She's an awesome driver," Whisp added, still plotting.

"Oh, Low Vis, you and the others are forbidden from assisting Whisp in entering the workshop. Whisp, if you break into the shop I'll make you another gizmo of your choosing." Devin said with a smile as he provided proper incentive.

Mimi had already formulated a plan to do such a thing, but neither said or did anything to give that away. Instead she leaned against the wall, arms crossed over her chest.

Whisp, meanwhile, proceeded to give Dev a very unsubtle hug in an attempt to steal the remote in his pocket.

Devin once more retrieved his remote. "Ineffective. But, good try." He patted her head with his free hand, while Whisp sulked some more. "Meanwhile, why don't you try out your Crescent Rose?"

Brightening immediately at the prospect, Whisp very suddenly seemed to disappear around the same time a door could be heard opening and closing further down the hall.

Devin perked his ears at Whisp's sudden disappearance. "I'd. Better go find her." He said to Mimi as he began to back up. "Remember, keep out of the workshop unless you're gonna order something." He turned around and began to jog in the direction of the door slamming.

Mimi nodded and chucked as he vanished as well. "Cute couple," she said with a smile, before deciding to follow and see what that boy could build.

Devin stopped in front of a seemingly random door and proceeded to facepalm. "You can read each other's thoughts, why are you playing chess?"

"We disconnect from each other before we start." Responded a mechanical voice that was similar to that of Low Vis.

Mimi blinked at not one, but two mechanical wolves playing a game of skill. "Oookay."

"Hello Mimi." Said the larger of the two, who had a mini gun and a grenade launcher on his back. "I am Lockdown."

"Crackdown." Said the second one who was still larger than Low Vis and had an AA12 and a mine launcher on It's back. After brief pondering he moved a pawn forward.

"I made them as well." Devin informed with a hint of pride.

"You keep this up and you'll have a rivalry with the FGTL," Mimi joked.

Devin chuckled. "That would certainly be interesting, though Largoist corporate espionage isn't something I would like to experience."

"They would have the Manor to contend with if they tried that," Mimi replied, "And as long as it's on your side, they'd never get in."

"Ahh, but war is waged on two fronts. The physical and digital. Just because you are strong in one doesn't mean you can relax on the other, and Skorpion already pesters me with his hacking." Devin stated with annoyance.

"So keep an air gap on your important documents and designs," Mimi said like it was the most obvious thing in the world.

"Do you understand how difficult it is to keep a secret from Skorpion? He's nosy, persistent, and worse of all intelligent! Dealing with idiotic political fat cats is one thing, but that man boils my blood." Devin said with obvious disdain.

"Okay, but humor me here," Mimi said, "If he can't get in, and there's no connection: how can you loose?"

"As a legitimate company, the entire online marketplace, though my more secluded projects are kept on a hard drive offline." Devin said with a sigh.

Mimi nodded, "Trust me, you keep churning out stuff like this and the marketplace will be split. At least in MT."

Devin pondered for a moment. "Perhaps we could work out an arrangement and run a monopoly on the world's technological progression."

"That could be profitable," Mimi noted.

"Indeed it could..." Devin said with a catlike sway of his tail.

"Checkmate." Said Crackdown as Lockdown started reseting the board. "Thirty two to twenty three."

"Yeah yeah, but if you think this is over you've-" Lockdown said before being cut off by Crackdown.

"Got another thing coming? It's your turn." Crackdown said, sounding distinctly pleased as Lockdown grumbled over trickery.

Mimi chuckled at the scene, "Well, which way did the hyper one get off to?"

"Right." Devin said before stepping out of the room, making sure Mimi was out too before closing it and opening it again repeatedly until the door was opened to a room containing Whisp, who had already mastered the folding and unfolding of her new weapon and was now trying out the recoil, propelling herself from one end of the large room to the other with an excited whoop.

"That is quite interesting," Mimi mused as she watched.

"It seems to be doing it's job well. A bored Whisp is something to fear, so I do what I can to keep her happy." Devin said while carefully observing Whisp.

"I have not yet seen a bored Whisp," Mimi observed, "I can only imagine the horror."

"If you are lucky, you'll keep having to only imagine." Devin said to Mimi before walking into the room. "How's the Crescent Rose handling?" He asked Whisp as he took a few steps in.

"Awesoooooooome!" the teen girl whooped as the recoil once again sent her hurtling across the room; she had also clearly been watching too much RWBY (if there was such a thing), because she was already perfectly imitating some of Ruby's moves, both from the red trailer and the show itself.

Mimi watched the teen moving around with all the skill and grace of a Sailor Scout on meth and nodded with approval. "Not bad."

This, of course, was immediately followed by Whisp misjudging the distance between herself and the far wall, pulling the trigger to send herself flying once more... and flying face first into said wall with a rather alarming CRACK!.

"Ow..." the teen girl observed from her new place on the floor, while blood gushed from her nose.

Mimi flinched, "That looked painful," she said under her breath. "You okay?" She called out to Whisp.

The teen girl took a moment to mentally examine herself, just to be sure, before rather casually announcing (still from her place on the floor), "I think I may have broken my nose." She paused a moment, thinking, before adding, "Should I go to the hospital or something, d'you think?"

"Just plug you nose and lean forward until you stop leaking," Mimi advised.

"I'm... Gonna call mom." Devin said as he pulled up his phone and called his mother. "Hello, mom. I think Whisp broke her nose... Okay, we'll try to stop the bleeding... Love you too." And with that Devin hung up. "She's on the way."

"Okay," Whisp rather calmly replied, still on the floor, and still bleeding quite a lot. If she was being completely honest, she didn't actually feel capable of moving at the moment, but no one had asked, and she was hardly going to volunteer such information.

"That's a lot of blood actually," Mimi said, sounding a little worried as she walked over to the young girl.

"Do you have anything we can use to stop the bleeding? Or maybe the Manor could take us someplace with bandages or something?" Devin asked as he crouched beside Whisp to examine her nose.

Mimi formed a blade from the shadows and cut the sleeve off of her jacket. She held the cloth to Whisp's nose before helping the bleeding girl to a standing position. "Lets get you to the kitchen. Dev, put her arm around your neck like this," Mimi leaned forward and held Whisp's arm over her neck and shoulders with one hand, the other hand supporting her by holding her waist.

Devin nodded before Mimicking Mimi, being sure to be especially gentle with his hurt friend.

"Well... we know the walls are sturdy," Whisp commented after a few moments of silence as they headed for the kitchen, rather obviously trying to cover up her embarrassment.

"Yes, yes they are," Mimi agreed with a sage nod as they entered the kitchen in what must have been a new record, "Are you still leaking?"

The teen girl attempted to stare down at her nose, which was still hidden behind what had once been Mimi's jacket sleeve by mysterious means, causing her to look silly without actually accomplishing much. "Yes," she replied, after a brief moment of contemplation.

"Okay...you seriously need some multivitamins or something," Mimi said as she grabbed a towel and held it to Whisp's nose instead of the remains of her sleeve. "Devon, is there an ice pack in the freezer? Or ice? Or even hamburger?"

"Dev-in, not Dev-on." Devin corrected before hesitantly releasing Whisp to check the freezer. "My god, it's like a Narnia of food..." He said as he stared into the freezer. "Found one!" He declared as he grabbed a ice pack and closed the freezer to rush back to Whisp.

The former officer made a mental note of the name before she took the pack, wrapped it in another towel and placed it against Whisp's nose. "How's that?"

Whisp offered a thumbs up in response, seeing as her nose and the surrounding portion of her face (including her mouth) had now been completely obscured by the ice pack.

"Good," Mimi responded with a nod, "Now we'll just wait for Devin's mom...and who is Devin's mom?" She suddenly realized this was a rather odd situation.

"Scientist, doctor, scholar, lady." Tiffaney announced from the doorway. "Pardon me, I couldn't resist the cliché." She said with a giggle before walking up to Whisp. "How are you feeling sweetie?"

Ice pack still obscuring much of her face, Whisp resorted to a shrug, though something in her eyes seemed to say that her nose really fscking hurt.

"She fought the wall," Mimi said, "And the wall won."

This, of course, earned a glare, which was re-payed with a shrug.

"Teenagers." Tiffaney said with a sigh. "Well, come on. Let's sit down so we can take care of it." She said as she picked up Whisp and carried her to a near chair, allowing Mimi to keep pace with the ice pack.

Whisp fidgeted a bit, not used to having people fussing over her, and made no attempt to hide a sigh over the whole matter.

"So doctor scholar lady," Mimi began, "Is she going to make it, or do we need to amputate?"

And that earned a sound of complaint from Whisp, who didn't remotely care for the idea of losing her nose, even if she wasn't sure if Mimi was being serious or not.

Tiffaney lifted the ice pack to take a look at Whisp's nose. "It's not that bad. A few minutes and a little hocus pocus and she'll be good as new." She assured as she placed a few tools on a nearby table top. "Devin, and company, would you mind waiting outside?"

Mimi nodded and headed out of the kitchen with Devin following shortly after.

"Okay, we're going to start by setting your nose back into place." Tiffaney said as she observed Whisp's nose closely. "I'm sorry, but this may hurt for a bit..."

---

In typical Whisp fashion, the rearranging of her nose did not result in any crying or screaming - just some very loud (and sometimes surprisingly creative) swearing. It would later occur to her to hope that Dev's mom hadn't taken any of it personally, but at the time there was just pain and swearing and very little thought to the possible consequences of either.

Devin gritted his teeth, and on several occasions reached for the doorknob only to pull away at the last second. He looked to the ground with is ears folded back, feeling rather useless.

Mimi looked rather thoughtful, never having thought of using those words in that particular order before. She would have to write that one down.

Of course, by the time the teen girl came bounding back out of the kitchen, smiling and looking very much as though nothing had happened (apart from the blood on her clothes, that is), she was feeling good as new and quite ready to get back to practicing with her Crescent Rose - but maybe in a larger room, this time.

"How are you feeling?" Devin asked, perking a single ear as he did.

"Good!" was her decidedly care-free response. "Wanna watch a movie or something, before I go back to practicing?"

"Sounds good to me." Devin said, his ears returning to their usual perkiness. "What do you want to watch?"

"Whisp, if you insist on using that thing you really should practice in a padded room of sorts." Tiffaney advised as she walked through the doorway.

"Okay," the teen girl promptly agreed, in the same breath as she told Dev, "Let's watch something with vampires, I wanna watch something with vampires."

"As long as it isn't Twilight. I heard the movies were terrible." Devin said, feeling better now that Whisp was okay.

"What about Underworld?" Mimi suggested.

"Okay!" Whisp agreed, in spite of having no idea what Underworld was, already leading the way down the hall to where she thought the multimedia room might be.

Devin followed after her as Tiffaney waved to them. "So, are you this Saeko I've heard of?" Tiffaney asked Mimi, while thoroughly examining her from where she stood.

Mimi broke out in laughter at that, "Oh no, I'm Kamimila Saneki," she said once she contained herself and extended a hand.

Tiffaney accepted the offered hand. "Tiffaney Jawoh. I'm sure you already know, but Devin's my son."

"Yes, I'd gathered that from the phone call," Mimi said with a smile.

"Do you reside here?" Tiffaney asked with a puzzled expression. "I was under the impression that they were alone."

"No, I have my own apartment," Mimi replied, "For now, at least. Things can change." She was being vague.

"Oh? Then what brings you to the Manor?" Tiffaney asked as she moved her hands to her lab coat pockets.

"Once a Mihoist, always a Mihoist, I suppose," Mimi shrugged, "And Whisp is amusing."

"She gives my son someone to talk to, and is a nice girl. I'm happy for them." Tiffaney said with a gentle smile.

And they are both hopelessly clueless... Mimi thought to herself, "Well, better catch them before they make it half way through the movie. You coming?"

"I would, but I'm on the clock." Tiffaney said as she reached into her pocket to pull out a small transmitter. She pressed the button and spoke into it. "Sparky, could you be a dear and pull the blue lever." Moments later a plot hole opened beside her. "You know how Largoists are." She said with a wave as a small dog trotted through the portal.

"...Yes, yes I do," Mimi nodded, she wasn't aware transportation by plot hole had been mastered yet. "I'm sure I'll see you around the HQ then, I'm a loyal-ish customer," she said with a smirk.

"Perhaps we shall." Tiffaney said as she picked up Sparky and pet him. "Until then!" Tiffaney said as she walked through the portal, which closed shortly after.

Mimi made her way down the hall and heard the sounds of vampires and werewolves shortly, "Of course they didn't wait," she muttered with a smirk.


Summary:

Mimi arrives at the Manor
Stealthy stealth class.
Mimi is moar stealth.
Whisp is excitable.

Enter the Ghost
Mimi knows not the Slender-man.
Whisp feels the need to right this injustice.
Enter the Dev.
And the Crescent Rose.

Shop talk.
Rebounding Whisp.
Broken nose Whisp.
Bleeding like a Japanese Horror Movie.
First Aid and a phone call to Mom.

Mom = Tiffaney
Whisp is right as rain and wants to watch a movie.
Mimi suggests Underworld 'cause Mihoist.
Mimi and Tiffaney have a short chat.
They started without her! D:
DarTan: The Unspeakable Cook.
Katrina: Bitch, She Eats People
Mimi: Varying Shades of Gray and A Concerning Amount of Red.
Ahab: Hail, Huntsmaster.
Stone: His Rap Sheet Is Better Than Wrapping Papper.
<<

Skorpynekomimi

User avatar

Posts: 96

Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2014 3:06 pm

Post Mon Nov 03, 2014 7:48 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

Neglected Scientist
Characters: Skorp, Tiffaney.
Authors: Skorpy, Oblivion
Location: FGTL HQ, around and about in the city.
Timestamp: After 'Combat Efficiency for Apartments'.


Skorpion grunted as he pried the last of the bullets from the armour plate sat on the desk. It hit the desk with a *clonk*, before trying to roll off onto the floor. He reacted quickly; kicking it as it dropped before catching it out of the air and dropping it into the portable crucible already warming on the desk. "I have no idea why these people insist on shooting at my cars. They know they're bulletproof, and yet they still destroy the paintwork." He sighed, setting the plate aside and reaching out to take a swig from a nearby cup full of a greenish-grey gelatinous mass with a haze of evaporated caffeine over the top.

Tiffaney stood just outside of Skorpion's door, dressed in her usual attire as she attempted to figure out how to ask him to a date. She pondered a bit before giving up and knocking on his door. "Skorpion?"

Skorpion looked up, raising an eyebrow. "Yes, that's me."

Tiffaney laughed quietly to herself. "May I come in?" She then asked, the nervousness making her heart rate increase.

"You may," he replied, stirring the crucible slowly with a spoon. "Door's unlocked."

Tiffaney opened the door and entered the room before closing the door behind her. "May I ask you a question?" She asked as she approached him.

Skorpion nodded. "No, I don't plan on using this to stir coffee. No, I don't know who stole your lunch from the fridge, and yes, I am recycling bullets people insist on firing at me. Did you have a different question?"

"Yes. I was wondering... If you could, maybe... Clear an afternoon." Tiffaney said after she had reached the other side of the crucible, fidgiting nervously as she spoke. "For a date, just the two of us?"

Skorpion blinked, the spoon stopping in the crucible. "A date. You want to ask me on a date."

Tiffaney nodded. "I mean, if you don't want to I understand." She clarified as she drew imaginary circles on the floor with the tip of her shoe.

Skorpion sighed. "You do remember I kill people for money, right?

"And you remember I cut people open and alter their very being." Tiffaney responded to make note of how little a difference it made.

"Touché." Skorpion conceded. "I guess I can delegate for an afternoon, now we're not so understaffed. Did you have anywhere in mind?"

"Maybe a nice resturaunt?" Tiffaney offered, surprised that Skorpion had agreed.

Skorpion nodded. "I know a few. Is Italian fine with you? The french restaurant doesn't like me after I shot their maitre'd, and English cuisine may not be to your liking."

"Italian sounds great!" Tiffaney exclaimed with a bounce of joy. "When are we going?" She then asked with a sparkle in her eyes.

Skorpion paused briefly, eyes unfocusing as he checked his schedule. "This afternoon could work, if you don't mind me fitting in a little work along the way to make sure things are clear."

"That's fine!" Tiffaney said with a smile. "Oh, I should choose a dress!" She decided as she turned to run out of the room. "Call me an hour before you're ready!"

Skorpion nodded, chuckling softly. As the door closed behind her, he tried to retrieve the spoon from the crucible, only to find he was holding a handle. "Oh, for..."

---

Skorpion sighed. Women. He rang again, and this time the call was picked up after a couple of rings. "This is your hour's notice. I'll pick you up from your lab, if that's okay?"

"Okay, I'm just wrapping up a test involving ROUS. " Tiffaney said over the phone as she handed a clipboard to an assistant and headed for the changing room.

"Good, good. 5.56mm works well, I've found. Enough punch to get through the hide, but not so much it goes out the other side. 9mm at short range in a pinch." Skorpion shrugged. "Any results so far, and how many fingers have been lost?"

"So far we've learned that their blood has become moderately acidic, and works quite well on most locks." Tiffaney informed. "But I'm gonna get ready now. See you in an hour~"

"Very well." Skorpion hung up, pausing to check a mirror. "I should probably wear something other than body armour, shouldn't I." He sighed, and headed for his bedroom, just off the labs. "I'm sure there was a suit in here somewhere..."

---

Tiffaney looked at herself in a mirror, slightly thrown off by the sight of herself in an elegant red dress (http://www.google.ca/imgres?imgurl=http ... 24&ndsp=25), and feeling slightly naked and light without her lab coat. After deciding that she looked good enough, she took her leave from the locker room.

Skorpion was waiting in her lab, sitting on a bench and feeling decidedly underdressed in a suit and tie, with only a few small concealed weapons and no swords. As Tiffaney walked in, he raised his eyebrows in surprise. "Wow, you clean up pretty well. I'm impressed."

Tiffaney's cheeks took on a shade of red upon hearing the complement. "You look quite nice yourself." She said as she walked over to him.

Skorpion looked down at himself, and snorted. "These suits are ridiculous. Nowhere to store weapons, and I nearly holed it three times just walking here." He looked up again and sighed, extending an arm to Tiffaney. "Shall we go, then? Dinner reservations await."

Tiffaney took his hand. "Let's." She said with a smile as she let him lead her off.

Skorpion smiled, trying not to grin as he led her off to the garage. On arriving there, a Jaguar XJ6 was waiting in a cleared patch of floor, gleaming under the lights. Skorpion moved around, opening the passenger door for her to climb in.

Tiffaney took a seat in the car and watched as Skorpion closed the door and walked around to claim his own seat.

Skorpion grinned as he started the car's engine, gunning the throttle before slipping it into gear and easing it out into the daylight. "I'm guessing you don't get out much, what with your research and being in a secret project for so long?"

"Well, being a teacher at a school for magical girls tends to give me my daily dose of exitement most of the time." Tiffaney responded with a happy smile.

Skorpion nodded. "I can see that. Lucius often has his hands full, especially with keeping track of his students on patrol. I take it you've settled into teaching well?"

Tiffaney nodded. "Mmmhmm. Even Devin's begun to settle into school." She said happily. "What about you, how have you been?"

Skorpion waved a hand dismissively as he pulled into traffic, horns blaring as he carved up a bus before pulling straight across three lanes to take a shortcut. "Mostly the usual. Murder, violence, theft, R&D work, and plotting to raid a superpower." He shrugged, the car twitching on the road as the motion wiggled the steering wheel. "Although, someone attacked my shipment of ammo for this month, so things are a little tight around here."

"Did you find out who?" Tiffaney asked as she adjusted her glasses.

"Not yet." Was Skorpion's response. "It's still limping to port, so I'll do detective work once it gets here." He sighed. "I just wish Russia hadn't gone all imperial again. It was so much easier getting supplies by submarine." He paused, realising what he was saying. "But I shouldn't bore you with talking about work. This IS a date after all..." He swerved around a truck, weaving through a few lanes of traffic to pull into a side street.

"I don't have much else to talk about." Tiffaney admitted, practically unphased by the near misses and general reckless driving.

"Sadly, that's the problem of our line of work. It becomes your life, and there's no escaping it." Something chimed softly on the dashboard, and a flashing red icon appeared on the windscreen. "Ah, speaking of which, work invades again. Excuse me a moment."

Skorpion pulled over to the side of the road, getting out before pulling a small tube from behind the back seat and extending another tube from the back. He took aim with it carefully before firing; a rocket streaking out and impacting on a truck halfway down the street, with the resultant fireball rising up three storeys before dissipating into greasy black smoke. "That should do it. Destroyed, check. Public demonstration of force, check..."

He sniffed, before looking over his shoulder and patting out a patch of smouldering fabric on his jacket. "Damn." He climbed back into the car, tossing the spent rocket tube aside before shutting the door. "Just had to fit something in, I'm afraid. Sorry about the burning smell; I'm not used to not being fireproof."

"I don't mind, as long as you aren't hurt." Tiffaney said as she leaned over to run her fingers over the burnt fabric, unintentionally showing a little cleavage. "I'm glad that wasn't too long, but what was so special about that particular truck?" She then asked, tilting her head to the side curiously.

"It was carrying explosives. Someone anonymous was paying for it to be blown up in a public place. Enough to justify the effort, but not for anything fancy." Skorpion's eyes were naturally drawn to the hint of cleavage as he felt her touch on his shoulder. "And you needn't worry; even if I am hurt, it should heal up on it's own after a while."

"Pain still hurts." Tiffaney said quietly as she returned to sitting normally. "Are you sure there wasn't a better way to prevent them from blowing it up in a public place, than to blow it up in a public place?" She then asked, adjusting her dress to make herself more comfortable.

Skorpion shook his head. "Not while still making a profit on it. And besides; this is Tokyo. People here have an almost magical immunity to collateral damage most of the time." He gestured to the street, where the smoking crater was once again surrounded by traffic, with the worst damage to civilians being the odd scorchmark. "There's a reason faction activity is centered here, after all."

Tiffaney nodded in understanding. "So, have you eaten at this resturaunt before?" She then asked in an attempt to curve the conversation away from work. "It's been a long time since I've had a good Italian dinner."

Skorpion nodded. "A couple of times. It's pretty classy, but they've managed to avoid being too popular and crowded. Of course, it doesn't hurt that most Japanese people don't quite understand pasta, as well." He set off again, weaving between the repair crew arriving to fix the crater. "I've booked us a quiet table near the back, too, so we shouldn't be interrupted."

"That sound lovely." Tiffaney said with a sigh of delight. "I never got taken out to any good resturaunts before, so I'm really looking forward to this."

Skorpion raised an eyebrow, glancing at her. "Never? I'm surprised. With your looks and talent, I'd have thought suitors would be fighting over you..."

"Unfortunately it was my talents that drove them away. When your job is augmenting unwilling patients, people tend to fear you, for one reason or another." Tiffaney said while leaning back into her seat.

Skorpion nodded. "I can see why that would make people wary, certainly. Their loss though, I have to say. You're a kind and caring person behind the lab coat and reputation, and they'd have seen that if they'd looked deeper. But, alas, you're a mad scientist. Much as I'm a dangerous madman holding the city hostage, and the principal of the CMGY is a kitty-eared drunken sex pest." Skorpion paused briefly. "I'd appreciate it if you didn't try to slice open my friends, however."

Tiffaney crossed her arms and puffed out her cheeks, once more exposing cleavage that wouldn't be visible in her usual attire. "I just wanted to see. I would have stitched him up, good as new, but he insisted on no, so I had no choice but to let the opportunity pass."

Skorpion chuckled softly. "It's not worth the effort anyway. You won't find anything unusual in there, other than a worrying amount of lead and shrapnel, and enough alcohol to pickle a child in." He grinned, turning sharply to squeeze between a semi truck and a delivery scooter. "You, on the other hand, are an enigma. You're a scientist, and yet you're almost as magical as Arella, with neither impacting the other. It's astonishing."

"To truly understand one, you need to have proper understanding of the other, like yin and yang, magic and science go hand in hand. Most people don't see the connection, they see science as order, and magic as chaos. As though they are trying to destroy one another, when in reality they are working in tandem. They're both powerful things that can be used to create or destroy, so I wanted to master them both." Tiffaney chucked. "Though that's a lot to learn in one lifetime. Conjuration, alchemy, physics, biology... They're all just part of the massive puzzle that is the universe we live in." She explained with an almost childlike glee. "And I want to be the one to piece it together."

Skorpion nodded. "A lofty aim, certainly. I can't say I have much truck with magic myself due to the implants, but I certainly hope you reach your goals soon. You are, however, missing something important. It's not yin-yang duality, but a triangle." Skorpion held up his hands, thumbs and forefingters pressed together to form a triangle. "Magic, technology, and people. The latter is the major reason behind my work here; if I gather enough of the right people, we can accomplish great things together."

"I guess the lone wolf only survives for so long." Tiffaney said with a smile. "I suppose I'm pretty lucky to have come across a place where I work with people who are more than just co-workers."

Skorpion nodded, returning his hands to the steering wheel to dislodge a cyclist from the front of the car. "I'm probably immortal, but I get your meaning. And you have Alexis to thank for that; her glowing praise is what convinced me to seek you out."

"She's a good girl, and she's more attached to you than you think. I believe she sees you as the father figure she never had." Tiffaney said with the type of gentle smile that only a mother could manage. "Oh, but don't tell her I told you, or I don't think she'd talk to me for a few days."

Skorpion chuckled softly. "Somehow, that doesn't surprise me. I don't think I mind being a father figure, though; she needs someone to guide her, after all."

"I'm glad that you're willing to accept the role. Every child desirves a father." Tiffaney said with a happy sigh.

Skorpion nodded. "Sadly, the world isn't that kind to everyone. I'm hoping we can make it at least a little kinder, though." He pulled around a corner, before bumping up onto the sidewalk and taking out a string of parking meters, newspaper vending machines, and bins before coming to a halt. "And we have arrived."

"Good thing too; I'm famished." Tiffaney said as she unbuckled and exited the car. "I skipped lunch today, so I was really looking forward to this!"

Skorpion smiled as he stepped out the car, his door narrowly missing a pedestrian. "Skipping meals is a bad idea, especially for a magical girl. Can't have my top scientist getting cranky from low blood sugar."

Tiffaney let out a sigh. "I thought I left enough fake paper trails to hide it." She then giggled. "So how did you find out?" She asked while walking around the car to claim Skorpion's arm.

Skorpion allowed her to take his arm as he headed into the restaurant, tapping his head with his free hand. "I'm incredibly sensitive to magic, due to the whole cyborg thing. Essentially, I could tell from the way you make my brain itch." He said, before grinning and winking at her. "That, and Arella told me. Either she could tell, or Alexis told her. She could give the Spanish Inquisition a run for their money at interrogating people."

"Magical girls do have an innate ability to find out about others, but I don't think Lexi knows about me." Tiffaney said with a pondering expression.

Skorpion tilted his head curiously. "You didn't tell your kids about it?" He waved to the waiter, and followed him to the table.

"I wanted to, but at the labs I couldn't, and I haven't thought of a way to tell them after the escape... Besides, I'm retired." Tiffaney said, sounding a little guilty.

Skorpion chuckled. "That's what Arella said, but she's out fighting crime still. Just don't tell Lucius; she wants him to figure that out for himself."

Tiffaney laughed a bit. "I won't tell." She said as they were seated. "Maybe it's impossible to stop being a magical girl." She mused as she picked up the menu to examine it.

Skorpion nodded. "It's like stopping being a scientist. Once you have Largovision, you can't go back."

"I guess you're right, but I don't think I'm gonna go super heroing again for a while at least." Tiffaney said as she took note of a few items that seemed tasty. "What are you going to get for a drink?"

Skorpion grinned, tapping the drinks menu with a fingertip. "They do a coffee icecream milkshake here. It has more calories than some of the dishes, and it's delicious."

"Oh?" Tiffaney turned her attention to the drinks menu. "As tempting as that sounds. I think I may pick a wine. What's a fancy resturant without wine right?" She joked as she looked over the assorted wines.

Skorpion nodded. "That too. They have a very nice red wine all the way from Italy."

"You know, I think I'll let you pick. I love surprises, and you seem to know your way around drinks." Tiffaney placed the menu on the table and cradled her chin on the back of her fingers to watch Skorpion. "You know, you really do look different without the armour."

Skorpion raised an eyebrow. "I certainly FEEL different. All naked and vulnerable and squishy."

"I feel the same, it's strange not having my lab coat on." Tiffaney said in agreement. "But I guess it's not bad to leave it behind every now and again."

"Maybe for you." Was Skorpion's reply. "A labcoat is one thing, but that armour is like a second skin to me now. Although, I DO like being able to sit down without worrying about the chair collapsing. It's always slightly embarrassing when one just splinters under me."

"My labcoat does act as armour, though. I interwove nanomachines that harden in responce to physical trauma." Tiffaney clarrified. "And it is quite nice being able to use standard chairs."

Skorpion chuckled. "Ah, but you're a scientist. You don't need power assistance, or to shrug off anti-materiel rounds. As an engineer and a fighter, I often DO. Useful when actively being shot at, and when the latest project decides to explode in your hands." He held up a hand, showing a faint tan stopping abruptly where it met fresh skin. "At the very least, the armour keeps everything in place, so I don't have to hunt down the implants."

Tiffaney let out a sigh. "You really should be more careful." She advised with concern.

Skorpion shrugged. "They grow back. I have, if you recall, died twice already. The amnesia is a bit of a pain, but I had a backup last time that helped a great deal." He paused, pondering something. "Of course, I probably had one the first time, but didn't think to look for it on the way out. I wonder if it's still in their systems somewhere..."

"That's not the point. Just because they come back doesn't mean it's okay to lose them." Tiffaney said as she adjusted her glasses. "And besides, I don't like it when people hurt themselves." She said, wibbling a little.

Skorpion sighed, rolling his eyes. "Don't do that. It doesn't work when Arella does it, and she's far cuter than you. It's not like I TRY to hurt myself, anyway. It just tends to happen, especially when you're trying to pack rocket fuel and explosives into a shotgun shell."

"I swear that was more effective when I was younger." Tiffaney said to herself. "Sorry, if I'm bothering you about it, but why must you and Lucius attract trouble as if you have some kind of magnet for it embedded under your skin?"

Skorpion shrugged. "I'm a Largoist. THE Largoist, really, since I'm in charge of the rest of them. Trouble is what we do. Attracting, creating, solving, and causing. As for Lucius, he's scottish, so it's much the same thing. Just with whisky instead of b33r, and hating on the Irish instead of Mihoists. And the English. And the Welsh. And the French. And each other, for that matter."

Tiffaney giggled. "I suppose you have a point, even I've almost been blown up a couple times with the research around here... Then there was the ROUS that tried to bite me." She trailed off for a moment. "But, we should probably place an order shouldn't we?"

Skorpion nodded. "Probably. I AM starting to get a little hungry." His stomach growled in response, and he rolled his eyes again. "Okay, fine, more than a little hungry." He sighed. "This was the other major issue with the project. Too much load dumped on the metabolism."

"I know, we went off of a few notes the old director carried over from the Land Warrior project." Tiffaney informed with a smile. "For land warriors there is no such thing as being a 'little' hungry."

Skorpion nodded again, chuckling lightly. "Energy drinks mixed with weight gain powder and vegetable oil keeps the edge off it, but I'm still eating as much as an entire squad." He looked up, waving to get the attention of a waiter.

It wasn't long before a waiter noticed Skorpion and made his way to the table. "<Have you decided on an order?>" He asked as he readied a pen on his small notebook.

Skorpion nodded. "<I have indeed. The spaghetti and meatballs, along with the lasagna, the carbonara bake, and two orders of garlic bread, along with a bottle of {fancy red wine} and a cappucino shake." He then turned to Tiffaney. "What'll you be having?"

"<Just the spaghetti with a side salad for me.>" Tiffaney added with a smile. "<Oh, and a strawberry pie.>"

The waiter jotted down the orders looking as though he wasn't really paying all that much attention. "<Two spaghettis, one with a side salad, lasagna, carbonara, two orders of garlic bread, a bottle of {wine}, and a cappucino shake. What dressing would you like on that, ma'am?>"

"Caesar, please." Tiffaney happily responded.

"<Sir, would you like to have them brought to the table as they are completed or all at once?>"

"<Bring them as they're finished, please.>" Skorpion replied, before the waiter headed off to send the order through. "That should keep me set for a few hours."

"It must be inconvenient for you to have to eat so much." Tiffaney said as she looked to him with a concerned expression.

"Somewhat, yes. If it wasn't for all the different cuisines on offer in the city, I think I'd have resorted to hacking up an IV drip of sugar or something by now." Skorpion thought briefly, before starting to doodle on a napkin with a pen he produced from a pocket of his suit jacket. "Of course, that wouldn't be too hard. The main problem would be what to put in it, or finding a way to make the protein powder smoother so it'd fit through a needle..." He trailed off as inspiration took him, the doodle getting more and more complex.

Tiffaney giggled and watched as the doodle progressed with interest. "Though we aren't supposed to be working right now." She said cheerfully.

Skorpion blinked a few times, before looking up from the napkin. "Ah, sorry. It's just that inspiration strikes sometimes, and I have to get everything down before it fades." He grinned sheepishly. "I'm sure you do the same with your experiments sometimes."

"I can't say I don't, and I completely understand. The feeling of lost insparation is terrible." Tiffaney said as she crossed her arms and nodded.

Skorpion sighed, looking down at the napkin again, before folding it and tucking it into a pocket. "Still, I've learned over the years to let the inspiration cool off before I start making things, and not to make things I designed while drunk. That's actually how the coffee machine came about, would you believe."

"Somehow, I would. It's nice being able to talk to someone who's as smart, or smarter than me for a change." Tiffaney once more cradled her chin on the back of her interlocked fingers, resting her elbows on the table for support as she leaned forward.

"Smarter?" Skorpion's eyebrows raised. "I doubt that. You're a renowned scientist, at least in the black project community. If it wasn't classified, some of your research would merit a Nobel prize, I'm sure of it. As for me?" He snorted, waving a hand dismissively. "I'm nothing special. I don't even have a degree. I'm not smart; I just think faster and crunch numbers better than normal humans. Even the engineering doesn't take much brain; just a working knowledge of machinery and a CAD program installed in my head."

"You're just flattering me." Tiffaney said as she waved and hand to him and blushed. "My research would hardly warrant a Nobel prize. " She said, though she was beaming from the complement.

"Nonsense." Objected Skorpion. "I've read your papers, the ones they wouldn't let you publish. Namely, the ones on combining magic and technology. If Erika Multinational were still active, they'd have snapped you up like a shot. And that's if eastern blog agents hadn't gotten to you first."

"And what about the Principality of Sealand?" Tiffaney mused with rosy cheeks and a smile. "Do you think they would have had an interest in my research?"

Skorpion chuckled. "Not until a few years ago, when some maniac from Japan bought them out. But after that? Certainly. Interested enough to stage a terrorist attack as a distraction for acquiring you. Or to take you out to dinner." Skorpion grinned.

"Well, you sure know how to impress." Tiffaney giggled. "If that's what you'd do for a date, I'd shudder to imagine what you'd plan for a proposal."

Skorpion scratched his chin thoughtfully. "Maybe momumental theft, or writing her name on the Moon, perhaps..."

"You don't do anything half-way do you?"Tiffaney asked as the spaghettis were brought out with her salad and placed on the table.

Skorpion shook his head. "If anything's worth doing, it's worth overdoing. That's a major part of what Largoism is all about." He eyed the spaghetti as it arrived, taking his (much larger) plate and digging in.

Tiffaney nodded, and started on eating her salad at an average and well-mannered pace.

---

A short while later, Skorpion was looking through the dessert menu while a waiter loaded empty dishes onto a cart. "Oh, and a créme brulée, as well. Just the strawberry pie for you?" He looked to Tiffaney, as another waiter scribbled furiously on his pad.

"Maybe some vanilla icecream with the pie for me." Tiffaney added for the poor waiter, who nodded and hurried to the kitchen, her cheeks a faint red from the alcohol.

Skorpion grinned, setting the menu down. "I'd have thought you'd go for something more sugary."

"I'm trying to cut back, though a triple fudge banana sundae with brownies, cherries, and extra whipped cream does sound good." She admitted as she fantasized about a sundae that was a third of her size with a smile of delight.

Skorpion snickered softly. "Well, maybe we can stop for more icecream on the way back. Who am I to stand between magical power and a sugar fix?"

"That sounds good. The night's still young, maybe we could go dancing afterwards?" Tiffaney offered, smiling at the promise of icecream.

Skorpion grinned, chuckling. "That sounds like fun, actually. Icecream and dancing is a good combination."

"Everything is more fun with icecream. " Tiffaney declaired confidently, placing her hands on her hips and sitting straight up as she did.

Skorpion leaned back, eyeing her briefly before breaking out into laughter. "Now you really DO sound like a magical girl. Are you going to break into a lengthy speech about love and justice, next?"

Tiffaney joined Skorpion in laughter. "I just might. " She said as she laughed. "This is fun!"

"It's been entirely too long since I've been able to relax and enjoy myself, really." Skorpion stretched, something in his shoulder popping loudly. "I almost feel like a normal person. Hell, after we get back, I might even sleep, just to savour it."

"If it gets you proper sleep, we may have do do this more often." Tiffaney said, sounding happy that she was capable of putting Skorpion at ease.

Skorpion rolled his eyes. "I get my eight hours a week, thank you very much. That's plenty for me, and I get WAY more done instead of wasting so much time unconscious."

"Now you're sounding like Devin." Tiffaney said with a giggle. "It's nice to sleep more than once a week, but I'm not gonna try to change you.

"Unlike him, I don't actually need to sleep at all, though." Retorted Skorpion. "I just get a little unhinged after a while, since there's still some human buried deep down under the implants and wetware."

"I don't think we'd be here if there wasn't." Tiffaney noted as she leaned over the table to rest her chin in her hands, once more exposing unintentional cleavage.

Skorpion raised an eyebrow. "True. Although, I'm afraid, I'm Skorpion all the way through these days. While I was human once, that's gone apart from some deep-seated programming and a few recovered flashes of memory."

"Memories aren't what make you human, and as magical girl a thing this is to say, it's your heart. You may be morally impaired, but you treat Arella like a daughter, and even my kids look up to you. You're still human, if not to yourself, then at the very least to us." Tiffaney said, looking one hundred percent serious.

Skorpion sighed softly, propping his elbow on the table and resting his head in the palm of his hand as he looked at her. "They cut my conscience out with a knife, to make me a better soldier. Humans did that. I'm not one of them. Right and wrong is a choice, not intuition dulled by groupthink and peer pressure. I'm a madman with a fusion-boosted nuclear weapon in his office, holding the city to ransom, dealing in death and destruction, and yet I'm one of the few standing up for the rights of a sizable minority in this city. I'm better than human. I'm not a set of hooves away from being mistaken for a herd animal."

"You're starting to sound like a super villain again." Tiffaney informed, though for some reason she rather enjoyed watching his super villain esque moments.

"Sorry." Skorpion chuckled sheepishly. "It seems to be a hazard of building an empire, these days. I even started monologuing the other day. Like a damned Mihoist!"

Tiffaney feigned a gasp. "It's more serious than I thought!" She said teasingly, before giggling.

"It's a legitimate problem!" Skorpion protested, waving a hand animatedly. "No conscience, remember. Nothing telling me I should stop, and when inspiration hits me, it just goes. That's sort of why there's a mecha stashed under the airfield, after all."

"If you ever actually cross the line, I'll just bring you back with the power of love and justice. " Tiffaney said with a playful smile.

Skorpion returned the smile, bowing his head respectfully. "Thank you. Between you, Arella, and Lucius, someone has to. I am not a Villain. Villains are defeated and killed, after all, and the heroes live on to continue the fight."

Tiffaney raised her wine glass to Skorpion. "To being heroes?"

Skorpion grinned, raising his own. "To being heroes."

Tiffaney tapped her glass against his before drinking the rest of it's contents. The waiter returning with two carts of desserts shortly after.

Skorpion downed his glass, before looking up to the desserts with a grin. "Ah, the sugar has arrived~"

Tiffaney was quick to claim her strawberry pie with icecream. With childlike joy, she began to eat it as the waiter placed the remaining plates on any available surface on the table.

Skorpion's grin widened as he dug into the multitude of desserts in front of him. "Can't very well go to an Italian restaurant without sampling the ice cream, can we?"

Tiffaney nodded. "I'd have to say the same about any place that has icecream." She said cheerfully before taking another bite.

"Of course a magical girl would say that." Skorpion waved with a spoonful of banana and icecream. "I'm beginning to think that magic runs on icecream and chocolate. Arella practically lives on it, and the CMGY goes through tons of it. A day."

"Desserts are yummy, and a magical girl's metabolism make it hard to gain weight from sweets." Tiffaney rather joyfully responded.

"Sugars DO burn off rather quickly." Skorpion resumed his assault on his desserts, a faint buzzing starting to become audible as he dug his way through them.

"Skorpion, you're buzzing." Tiffaney informed while pointing to him. "Is it a call or an alert?"

Skorpion paused, the buzzing getting louder. He raised his hand, holding it level, and watched it twitch fast enough to blur slightly. "No, that's actually the sugar. All this dessert on top of a meal."

"So, sugar rush?" Tiffaney simplified before munching on more icecream-topped pie.

Skorpion nodded, turning his attention back to the last of the desserts. "The buzzing should stop after a while once it all burns off." He remarked, scraping chocolate sauce off the side of a bowl.

Tiffaney nodded as she finished the rest of her pie.

Skorpion finished the last few smears of fudge, before waving one of the hoverint waiters over. "<Check, please.>" He produced a credit card from seemingly out of nowhere, the light catching the holographic swiss flag on it.

"Swiss account? Good choice." Tiffaney leaned back into her chair and sighed happily.

"Not as good as it once was, sadly." Skorpion tapped the numbers out on the machine, adding a sizable gratuity to the overloaded wait staff. "Their idea of anonymity has narrowed in recent years. I plan on moving wholesale once I have Sealand set up as a proper data haven, but I'm still pushing the UN into accepting us." He shivered suddenly, the buzzing starting to fade off. "Annoyingly enough, the main problem is still territorial conflict with the UK over where the original nation was and is. If it wasn't anchored to the seabed, I'd be tempted to just have it sealifted over here or something to make a point."

Tiffaney nodded attentively. "Territory's an issue everywhere in the world. It is one of the major reasons for wars."

"I'm doing better than the last guy, though. I at least have a receipt, rather than simply landing there and claiming the place." Skorpion grinned as he got up, finishing his glass of wine before setting it down next to the empty bottle. "Shall we go, then?"

"Icecream and dancing awaits." Tiffaney stood from her seat and smiled brilliantly.

Skorpion grinned, reaching out and taking her hand before tugging her closer. He shifted slightly, twirling her neatly before catching her. "Dancing, and more icecream!"

Tiffaney let out a squeal of excitement as Skorpion twirled her and giggled as she came to a halt in his arms. "Going by the preview, the main event is going to be fun."

Skorpion smiled down at her, chuckling softly. "Muscle memory never fades. Somewhere back before all the surgery, someone taught me to dance." He held her briefly, before stepping away to lead her back to the car.

"You are quite the talented man aren't you?" Tiffaney leaned her head against Skorpion's shoulder.

Skorpion nodded. "Of course. I'm not JUST a killer and mad engineer, after all."

"You'd be dreadfully boring if you were." Tiffaney said as she looked up at him. "But after twenty years of working with them, mad scientists are the hardest to get along with. They always think you're out for their research."

"That's true in my case, though; I AM out for their research." Skorpion waggled his eyebrows conspiratorially as he guided her through the door. "It's just easier to hire them to get at it, rather than going to all the effort of stealing and reverse-engineering. Plus, you usually get a genius scientist as part of the package. Much like I did with you, in fact."

"The family bundle, is what you could call it." Tiffaney said, giggling slightly at her own joke.

Skorpion nodded. "So, I got the beautiful scientist, her research, and her family of super-soldiers, bar one that's gone Mihoist." He chucked softly. "That's a pretty good deal, even with feeding Alexis after her accident."

"I'm just glad she's not gonna turn into a clone. Clones are difficult to deal with. Easy to make, but difficult to deal with." Tiffaney said, making her experience in the matter evident.

"I'm pretty sure I'm read-only. Wouldn't be a very effective super-soldier if I could copy classified technology, would I?" Skorpion remarked, as he maneuvered Tiffaney into one arm to open the door of the car with the other.

"I suppose you're right, it's a good thing too. I don't think the world could handle two of you." Tiffaney said as she entered the car and buckled up.

Skorpion grinned, sliding into the car next to her. "It can barely handle one of me as it is." He winked, before reaching out of the window to tug the sheaf of parking tickets from under one of the windscreen wipers.

"You think they'd give up on parking tickets after a while." Tiffaney pondered. "I mean it's not like they actually prevent Largoists from parking, well... Anywhere they want."

Skorpion nodded. "They totally don't. As foreign citizens, we're immune to local taxes. The US Embassy staff never pay their speeding fines, so neither do we. Diplomatic immunity rocks." He grinned, before jamming the car into gear and reversing away to pull a J-turn. "I think I know just the place for dancing."

"Oh? Where is that?" Tiffaney asked, canting her head to the side in curiosity.

"A dance club near Akihabara. The area's been on a kick for British TV for a while, so they've taken to ballroom dancing nights." He shrugged, swerving around a bus. "Just don't be alarmed if you see anyone in a kilt; some of them don't realise that the eighties are over."

"I work with Lucius, so I'm pretty used to kilts." Tiffaney informed, placing her knuckles on her hips and grinning.

Skorpion chuckled. "I apologise for that; nobody needs to see his legs. Least of all a school of teenaged magical girls."

"It's one of those things you just get used to." Tiffaney said with a shrug. "Better a kilt than nothing."

Skorpion winced at the thought as he ran through a red light, scattering a biker gang crossing the intersection as he plowed through them. "Don't give him ideas. Bad enough that he's got stills set up in the science labs. Last time one went up, it closed the school for a month while they replaced the roof."

"I removed the stills from the lab that I teach in." Tiffaney rather proudly informed. "I'll be having none of that science happening in my class."

Skorpion chuckled. "You might want to keep the stills around, though. They're mostly ceramics, same stuff I use for armour. Anything else tends to just dissolve over time, or react adversely to some of the ingredients." He sighed, slightly wistfully. "I worked out the design with his grandfather at one point, as he was sick of them exploding every so often and calling attention to themselves. Wouldn't let me mass-produce and bottle it, though."

"By this point it'd be only good as fuel." Tiffaney said with a sigh. "And he's drinking it..."

"Actually, the stuff he drinks is too impure to be a decent fuel." Skorpion pointed out. "The stills can be set to produce pure alcohols, though, and those are a VERY good fuel." He grinned, reaching over to pat the dashboard of the Jaguar. "I've taken to cutting fossil fuels with alcohols to save on costs. Stops them going goopy in winter, too."

Tiffaney nodded. "Sound like a good place to save money."

---

Skorpion swung the wheel around, sliding the car neatly into a parking space between two vehicles, and knocking the pair of scooters previously occupying the space into a wall. On striking the wall, one exploded in obeyance of the Law of Automotive Conflagration. Skorpion grinned widely, pumping his fist into the air. "Like a glove!"

"And with surprisingly little property damage." Tiffaney added with a grin of her own.

Skorpion chuckled, rolling down a window before reaching out and plucking a parking meter from the ground. "That can be corrected, if you wish."

"Tempting, but no." Tiffaney said as she exited the car and walked around to Skorpion. "Please, put the parking meter back."

Skorpion simply grinned in response, planting the parking meter back in the ground, upside-down.

"Close enough." Tiffaney said, before she grabbed Skorpion's arm and pulled him to the door of the club with surprising strength.

Skorpion chuckled as the bouncer waved them through; he didn't even have to use Arella as ID this time. "Eager, are we?"

"Of course! I can't even remember the last time I got to dance with someone." Tiffaney stated excitedly.

"Well, in that case, I shall endeavour not to keep you." Skorpion paused long enough to drape his jacket over a chair, before taking to the dance floor with Tiffaney.

Once on the dance floor Tiffaney looked to Skorpion, resting her hands on his shoulders. "Would you mind taking the lead?"

Skorpion nodded, taking a moment to pick out the beat of the music, before moving into a fast waltz with her. "Like this, you say?"

Tiffaney smiled as she followed through the motions. "You really are quite good at this." She complimented as she was spun and twirled, moving with the grace of someone who was well versed in ballroom dancing.

Skorpion grinned, moving swiftly to avoid another not-so-careful couple coming through, and changing direction to avoid Tiffaney being speared on a spiked hairstyle. "As I said, I was taught long ago. That, and close combat skills aren't so far removed from those needed for dancing."

"True enough." Tiffaney said before deciding to try to get to know each other a little better. "So how long did my fake paper trail keep you busy?"

"Not long; I set the base's AI on it for a while to chew through and confirm what I already knew. Brute-force solutions are surprisingly effective, you know." Skorpion winked at her.

"Oh, and how much did your brute-force find out?" Tiffaney then asked before she was twirled once more.

Skorpion's grin widened. "Mostly that you're very good at hiding your magical girl-ness, and that you go a very long way to protect your children."

"I would do anything for my kids." Tiffaney informed with an expression of simple joy. "They're the light of my life after all."

Skorpion nodded. "That's what the files showed, yes. Beating someone half to death with his own camera, for example."

"She was going to blackmail my daughter, so I beat her with the evidence, and erased her memories concerning the event. To this day she thinks she fell down a flight of stairs." Tiffaney said her expression darkening for a moment before returning to her usual cheer.

"Very restrained." Remarked Skorpion, turning neatly and stepping quite deliberately on the foot of someone who had strayed too close for his liking. "If anyone tried that with Arella, there wouldn't be a body left for them not to find."

"It was tempting, but her dissapearance would have been problematic." Tiffaney vaguely explained. "Speaking of Arella, did you go through with the adoption yet?"

Skorpion nodded. "Handed her the papers the other day, in fact. She seemed surprised, but happy with it." He shrugged as he twirled Tiffaney again. "Of course, it seems to be more reason to keep with the empire-building. Things should progress once my next shipment arrives."

"And what are you expecting in this shipment?" Tiffaney asked as she noticed the twirling was causing her glasses to start to droop. "Darn things." She muttered as she quickly adjusted them. "I should really get them re-fitted."

Skorpion chuckled softly. "We have the technology, you know. Adjustments, or just a new set of frames. Maybe titanium alloy, so they won't melt; I have some coming in on the shipment, along with iron ore for the mill, and the usual scrap metal, old vehicles, and military equipment from South American militaries who want it upgraded."

"Titanium frames, huh? Sounds a bit expensive for my taste, though the durability would be nice." Tiffaney commented as the first song neared it's end.

"Consider it a gift, then." Skorpion came to a halt as the song ended, before setting off in a different direction as the second began, changing his position with Tiffaney for a tango.

"Oh?" Mused Tiffaney as the dance began, adapting istantly to the new rhythm. "Good with kids, dates, dancing, and now gifts too?" She said as she was twirled before being brought in close. "Well paying job, I'm starting to wonder how you aren't married."

Skorpion chuckled softly. "Mass-murderer, rogue super-soldier, maniac driver, and wanted criminal, remember. Plus, I'm a foreigner in an increasingly xenophobic and insular culture here."

"I tend to see people for their positive traits, though the culture has become worrysome." Tiffaney said with concern. "But times will change."

"If they don't, I'll have to change them myself." Skorpion remarked darkly.

"Awww, lighten up! We're doing the tango after all." Tiffaney stated to lighten the mood.

"True, we are, aren't we?" Skorpion turned sharply, returning his attention to the dancing.

---

It wasn't until the street lights were lit, and the cool air of the night began to blow through the Tokyo streets that the couple left the dance club. "It's hard to believe that we've been dancing for hours already." Tiffaney commented as the cool outside air gently brushed across her skin, her hair fluttering gently in the breeze. "I gues time really does fly by when you're having fun."

Skorpion chuckled softly. "It does indeed. Been far too long since I've been able to unwind like that, too." He stretched, looking around before focusing on something a ways off. "Now, I promised icecream, did I not?" He grinned, wrapping an arm around her waist to guide her. "It's only a couple of blocks away, so we may as well walk."

Tiffaney leaned into Skorpion as they walked. "I'm glad you are enjoying yourself. Maybe we could go out again after the raid?" She asked as she looked up to him.

Skorpion considered that briefly. "I see no reason why not to, certainly."

Tiffaney wrapped Skorpion in a hug that would be tight even by his standards. "I'll be looking forward to it!" She declared excitedly.

Skorpion jumped slightly, taken by surprise by the suddenness and force of the hug. "Good to know." He smiled, then froze as something went *snik* behind him.

"<Nice suit. Shame if someone were to, say, cut a hole in it. Or you. Or her, for that matter.>"

"<Yeah, hand her over, and nobody gets hurt.>"

Skorpion looked over his shoulder to the gang, and sighed. "I don't have time for this. Sod off. <Leave me alone, and I won't hurt YOU.>"

"Is that a knife?" Tiffaney asked Skorpion with genuine surprise. "What does he expect to do with that, bleed on us?" She the asked as a follow up question. "<Umm, excuse me but... Are you serius?>" She asked the stranger, thinking it to be some kind of joke.

The youth with the butterfly knife sighed. "<Of course it's a knife. It's not a spoon, you know.>"

Skorpion released Tiffaney, turning to face the band of idiots. "<That's not a knife. THIS is a...>" He reached down to his ankle, his hand closing on nothing and moving swiftly to throw it at the knife-wielder. "Okay, that's not a knife either. Plan B."

The knife-wielder ducked on reflex, giving the crazy man a look. "<What are you talking about?>" He then turned to the youths standing next to him. "<What?>"

Skorpion grinned, shrugging off his jacket and handing it to Tiffaney. "Looks like we're doing this the old-fashioned way." He stretched, walking towards the group slowly, a grin spreading on his face.

"Do avoid murdering them." Tiffaney said as she took his coat. "Some people just refuse to take a hint." She complained as she pulled her phone from her purse, and began calling an ambulance.

"Oh, it'll be manslaughter at the worst. This isn't premeditated or anything." Skorpion picked up speed as the group stepped backwards, one swinging at him with a metal bar. Skorpion ducked under it with surprising agility, grabbing hold of the bar and hauling on it to pull the wielder into it, meeting him with a rising elbow to the face. A quick twist removed the bar from the wielder (dislocating his shoulder in the process with a crunching noise), and Skorpion swung it upwards, releasing it skywards.

"<Maybe we shouldn't have messed with this guy...>"

"<He got Kenichi-san!>"

"<Nonsense, he was showing us up all night! Get him!>"

"<If you're going to fight, shut up and fight!>" Skorpion grabbed a punch from one of the thugs, pulling him in and twisting the arm up behind the thug's body and forcing him to the ground with it. He then stepped forwards, stepping on the thug as he grabbed a knife thrust from another, twisting the arm and relieving him of the knife in short order. "And don't play with knives. They're dangerous." He turned the knife around, twirling it in his fingers before moving to embed it in the thug's eye. He stopped just short, glancing to Tiffaney and sighing softly. "<But she's said not to kill you, and I don't want to get eyeball all over my shirt. You're lucky.>" He tossed the knife sideways, where it stuck halfway to the hilt in a telegraph pole.

"<He's a maniac. He's a maniac and he's going to kill us, because of your ego.>" The last two thugs stepped back, looking at each other.

"<I'm not going to KILL you.>" Skorpion rolled his eyes, flooring the quivering knife-wielder with a punch. "<Just, y'know, NEARLY kill you. Now shoo, I promised her icecream.>"

The thugs turned and ran, leaving various improvised weapons behind them as they fled.

Skorpion turned back to Tiffaney, dusting his hands off as he walked over. "Right! On with the icecream."

"Thank you for not killing them." Tiffaney said, handing him back his jacket. "An excellent display of restraint if you ask me."

Skorpion shrugged his jacket back on, grinning. "Well, who am I to refuse the request of a lady?" Behind him, the bar dropped back down, demolishing a keicar as it landed.

Tiffaney smiled brightly, completely unphased by the bar. After Skorpion had finished putting on his jacket she nestled herself under his arm again. "Shall we?"

Skorpion grinned, setting off for the icecream stand again. "We shall indeed."

---

A short walk got them to the icecream stand. The vendor eyed them and the destruction behind them warily. "<Factionists, huh? Good on you for dealing with those thugs; someone needs to stand up to those young punks about harrassing people.>" He spoke up, with a slightly formal accent.

"Better us than someone that they'd be an actual threat to." Tiffaney said with a friendly smile. "Maybe one day we'll find a cure for stupid, but in the meantime regular beatings will do."

The vendor nodded, retrieving his icecream scoop from the small electrical heater it was resting in. "It'll have to. Nowt else that'll help t' poor buggers." He responded, switching back to English with a thick accent. "Now, what'll it be?"

I'll have a triple fudge banana sundae with brownies, cherries, and extra whipped cream." Tiffaney requested with cheer.

The vendor raised an eyebrow as he set to constructing the sundae. "Before I serve this to you, lady, 'm legally obliged t'warn you that..." He checked a sheet taped to the back of the counter. "A dangerous amount of sugar, additives, and calories." He shrugged. "Health 'n safety, 'm afraid."

"I'd say that's just above a lethal dosage of chocolate for a normal human being~" Tiffaney chimed. "But don't worry about that, I'll be fine." She assured with a smile.

The vendor nodded as he started to pour fudge over the sundae, soon ending up with the icecream and banana nearly covered. As it settled, he poured shovelfuls of sprinkles over it, stopping once they refused to stick to the fudge. They were followed by another layer of fudge and a thick layer of whipped cream, before he handed it over to Tiffaney. "Enjoy. How about y' boyfriend, there? Anything f'r him, or is he just stand there trying not t'snigger?"

"A little of both I would imagine." Tiffaney said with a grin as she took the ice cream. "Thank you!"

Skorpion chuckled softly, stepping forward to order. "I'll have what she's having, only as a smoothie and with a couple of shots of espresso in."

The vendor shrugged, before assembling the banana split in a blender pot as the coffee brewed. As the coffee machine pinged, he dumped the shots of strong coffee into the blender and switched it on. The icecream, banana, and toppings were soon converted into a thick, brown mush that only reluctantly slid into a cup as it was poured from the blender to be handed over. "Same warning for thou, lad."

Skorpion grinned and nodded, before paying for the icecreams. "Gotta love ridiculous amounts of calories."

"Hurray for copious amounts of chocolate!" Tiffaney cheered as she claimed a spoon. "Where should we go?"

Skorpion sipped at his shake, considering their options. "Maybe someplace a little more private, and less full of thugs. This IS meant to be a date, after all."

"Somewhere more private? A rooftop, or maybe a park?" Tiffaney suggested before nibbling on a spoonful of icecream.

Skorpion looked up, then unfocused slightly. After a few seconds, his grin widened. "Both. I've found a rooftop park. Sound good?"

"Sounds perfect!" Tiffaney declared excitedly, before eating another spoonful of icecream.

Skorpion grinned, heading to a nearby tall building. The security guard inside the door got up to stop him, but stopped on realising who he was. Skorpion grinned and walked past him, and into the lift; the door of which opened just as he arrived. "Onwards and upwards?"

Tiffaney smiled and nodded with yet another spoonful of ice cream in her mouth.

Skorpion ushered her through into the lift, which started to move without a button press.

Tiffany continued to nibble away at her icecream as the elevator climbed through the floors, watching the number that represened their current floor go up.

Skorpion leaned back against the wall, sipping from his smoothie as they came to a halt at the very top, and ushering her through the door as it opened. "Ladies first?"

Outside the door was a small park set up on the rooftop, complete with a fierce gazebo roosting atop a small mound, trees, grass, and a thing that went clonk.

"Pretty." Tiffaney said as she examined the rooftop park. "Let's go to the gazebo!" She said as she began to walk towards the aforementioned gazebo.

Skorpion nodded, slipping an arm around her waist once more as he led the way to the gazebo. As they passed it, the thing that went clonk went clonk, followed shortly by a distant CL4NG from the direction of FGTL HQ. Once they reached the gazebo itself, Skorpion bowed slightly to it before entering the structure.

Tiffaney tilted her head curiously to Skorpion before following him into the gazebo to claim a seat.

Skorpion settled next to her, tugging her close. "Gazebos are fearsome opponents, and should be shown respect as you approach them."

"But... It's a gazebo." Tiffaney said, sounding unmistakably confused.

Skorpion nodded. "Exactly. It's a gazebo! Immune to swords, crossbows, and most magic. The only thing that can really kill them is fire, and even THAT takes a while." He sipped his smoothie, nodding sagely.

"I don't understand." Tiffaney admitted, the confusion still prominent.

Skorpion sighed softly, shaking his head. "You've never seen one in action, have you?"

"It doesn't move though, it's just a gazebo." Tiffaney said, still confused. "Is this a joke?"

"Just because you've never seen one move doesn't mean they don't move at all." Skorpion replied in a deadly serious manner, before his serious face cracked into a grin.

"You were joking! I thought you were serious!" Tiffaney said before eating a (larger than usual) spoonful, while blushing.

Skorpion broke into laughter, setting his smoothie down as he doubled over. "And you believed it. Hook, line, and sinker..."

Tiffaney's blush deepened as she looked down to her icecream. "Cheeky."

Skorpion's laugh lessened to a snigger as he smirked at her; his eyebrow raising slightly as he noted the deepening blush. "Of course. You expect any different from someone who insists UN inspectors wear cat-eared hats as part of the traditional national dress of Sealand?"

"I guess you have a point." Tiffaney said as she started to smile. "You had me going there for a minute. "

Skorpion grinned. "Totally got you. Although you did blush rather prettily once you realised, if that's any compensation."

Tiffaney's cheeks became a rose red after hearing the complement. "You're just flattering me." She said with her heart aflutter.

Skorpion nodded. "True, but there's no 'just' about it. I'm merely speaking the truth."

"You're quite the charming man, Skorpion." Tiffaney said as she leaned her head against his shoulder.

Skorpion chuckled softly, reaching up with his free hand to stroke her hair gently. "I do try. After all, I am on a date with someone particularly worthy of being charmed."

"Oh, you." Tiffaney said as she took her spoon to get more icecream, only to find out her bowl was empty. "Aww." She said dissapointedly before shrugging. "Oh well." She set her bowl aside to snuggle up to Skorpion.

Skorpion smiled, leaning into her and sighing softly. "Fun, followed by snuggling. This is something I could get used to."

"Me too." Tiffaney agreed with a contented sigh. "Thank you for a lovely evening. "

"You're welcome." Skorpion smiled, leaning back against the bench to admire the colours of the sunset, which were busily being altered by JASDF aircraft battling an airborne kaiju.

Seeing the sunset as a perfect distraction Tiffaney leaned up and gave Skorpion a quick kiss on the cheek.

Skorpion chuckled softly, turning and looking down at her after she'd finished, eyebrow raised. "Just on the cheek?"

"I'm the one who asked you out." Tiffaney said pressing a pointer finger against Skorpion's chest. "I mean you can't expect me to make all of the advances now can you?" She said with a grin.

Skorpion grinned back at her. "I suppose so, yes." With that, he leaned down to kiss her softly on the lips.

Tiffaney returned the kiss, placing a hand on his cheek as she did. She closed her eyes as a blush spread across her cheeks.

Skorpion broke the kiss after a short while, leaning back to admire the blush he'd caused. "I'm no expert, but I'm guessing that was your first?"

Tiffaney's blush deepened and she looked nervously to the ground. "... It was." She confessed shyly.

Skorpion chuckled softly, bringing his hand up to stroke her cheek gently before leaning in to kiss her again.

Tiffaney closed her eyes and leaned into the kiss, wishing that the moment could last forever.

As moments do, the moment lasted only briefly. Skorpion broke the kiss once more to allow her to catch her breath, and to smile at her. "Nice as this is, I feel we should continue somewhere a little warmer. You're getting cold."

"I guess that's the downside to dresses, huh? Not usually for cold weather." Tiffaney said with a smile complementing her blush.

Skorpion nodded. "That, and I'd trip over the skirt. Back to the car?"

Tiffaney stood from her seat and looked to Skorpion with a dreamy expression. "Back to the car."

Skorpion grinned, taking her hand and leading on to the car.

---

Skorpion parked carefully in a patch clear of scorchmarks, getting out before moving quickly around to open the door for Tiffaney.

Tiffaney exited the car to once more claim Skorpion's arm. "I had a lovely night, Skorpion." She said with a smile as she looked up to him.

Skorpion smiled back, leaning down to kiss her again. "So did I. We should do this again sometime, just without the random encounter."

"Just give me a call and I'll clear a day." Tiffaney said in a happy tone. "I need to thank Lucius for suggesting this to me."

"Oh, he put you up to this?" Skorpion grinned, rubbing his hands together. "He's lucky it went well."

"He merely suggested it. I was more afraid of you rejecting me than anything." Tiffaney said as she fiddled with her thumbs. "But now I have my own boyfriend! " She said in a giddy tone.

Skorpion chuckled. "True. Keep it up, and you might be a princess."

"I've been meaning to ask. You're in charge so wouldn't that make you a king, not a prince?" Tiffaney asked with a puzzled expression.

Skorpion nodded. "Ordinarily, yes. But Sealand was a principality when I bought it, and the terms of rulership include not changing the title."

"That makes sense. Maybe I'll realize my childhood dream of becoming a princess yet." Tiffaney teased with a smile.

Skorpion winked at her. "Play your cards right, and you may well get the dashing prince."

---

Summary:
Tiffaney asks Skorpion out on a date.
Skorpion asks if she knows he's a dangerous madman.
She knows, she's almost as bad.
Sure, okay. This evening, formal dress?

---

Tiffaney IN a dress.
Skorpion in a suit, without weapons and armour.
Classic Jag.
Off for Italian food.
All of the spaghetti.
All of the icecream.
He knows she's a magical girl. Oh noes!
No mafia there.
Moar icecream?
Interrupted by thugs.
Skorpion hands them their asses, unarmed.
No killings, though.
All of the more icecream.

---

Park? View? Somewhere private?
SKYSCRAPER-TOP PARK.
Snuggling.
Discussion.
Tiffaney's first kiss!
And her second.
Makeout time!

---

Back at HQ.
Another kiss. And another date secured.
Lucius' plan discovered.
If Tiffaney plays her cards right, she might make princess. Yay!
Skorp's a prince because it's a Principality. Not a proper monarchy.
And he's not egotistical enough to hire a lawyer and call himself Supreme Emperor or something.
Skorpion [FGTL]
- Skorpion - Lucius Ogilvy- Lola Usagi- Cathal Jones -
- FGTL/Sealand - CMGY Academy - CATastrophe Club - Kemonomimi Railroad -

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Sareth

Posts: 42

Joined: Sat Mar 01, 2014 4:41 pm

Post Tue Nov 04, 2014 9:49 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

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DarkTan

User avatar

Posts: 100

Joined: Fri Feb 28, 2014 11:14 pm

Post Fri Nov 21, 2014 3:14 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

We Need a Bigger Boat...or Another Boat...Or Something

Location: FGTL HQ, [etc]
Time Stamp: After Blood, Bath, And Beyond?
Characters: Ahab, Skorpion, [etc]
Authors: DarkTan, Skorpy, [etc]


Skorpion steepled his fingers, leaning forward to look over them. "So. Explain to me again. You lost the ship. And my cargo, which was on the ship. Not just mine, of course, no. Some of that was the air force of a few South American nations, which I was going to upgrade. And all this cargo, the guns, the tanks, the attack helicopters, the aging and hard-to-find jets, and the HUNDREDS OF TONS OF IRON ORE, is now lost at the bottom of the Pacific."

"South China Sea," Ahab corrected, "An' 'twas only 'alf the cargo. Called in a favor with 'otel Moscow to keep the riff raff away. An'. 'Twas. THOSE JAPANESE SEA RATS THA' SUNK ME BOAT." Ahab roared, not at Skorpion, but at the aforementioned Japanese Sea Rats that might have been able to hear his excessive volume.

Skorpion sighed, standing and placing his hands flat on the desk, leaning over towards the captain. "Then, after coming to me after bringing back no ship and half the cargo on an ex-Russian freighter, you come not to apologize, but, what, to ask for ANOTHER ship to lose?"

"Nay," Ahab replied, "Ah'm goin' after the bastards wot did this." The sadistic grin really did not belong on the bishounen face that lean over Skoprion's desk. "Ah'm gonna nail their hides o're me mantle."

"You don't HAVE a mantle piece; you live on a boat. And there are no fires on a boat." Skorpion rolled his eyes. "But if you're going to be hunting a navy, you'll need one of your own." He grinned widely, straightening up and clapping his hands together. "Fortunately, I have a navy. Or, at least, a flat-topped floating hulk, a few destroyers, and a lot of hovercraft and hydrofoils. I will loan them to you, but you're finding the crew. And if you sink those, too, you will be working the debt off for the rest of your damned life, ferrying tourists across the bay in a glass-bottomed barge. Are we clear? Do you, to borrow a phrase, ken?"

"Ah'll be needing a sub," Ahab replied, unfazed by the conditions.

"I ain't GOT a sub. Go talk to the Lola, she has a whole stable of them. See if she'll let you borrow..." Skorpion trailed off, his grin widening as an Idea dawned on him. "Yeees. I know exactly who to talk to. Down by the docks, there's a guy that hangs out in the really greasy spoon. Name's Ivan. He has contacts in the Russian navy. If you don't mind a bit of rust and some leaky reactors, he can hook you up with an attack sub, maybe book that cargo Typhoon to resume deliveries until I can get hold of a new boat for you to drive. If you lose THAT thing, I will fire you. Into space. On a rocket. Got it?"

Ahab gave a grin that would make women swoon and babies cry at the same time, "Deal."

"I mean it. You fuck up again, and you'll be in LEO with just enough air to think about what you've done." Skorpion pointed a finger at Ahab, before pointing to the door. "Now get out. I have to apologize to a bunch of man-child dictators, and explain to them why they're getting different aircraft from the ones they sent. Go see Lola; I hear she's having regulars-only nights lately."

Ahab grinned again, not appearing to be concerned in the slightest by the threats and promises, grabbed his hat from the "coat rack" and exited the office.

----

It wasn't long before Ahab decided three things needed to be done. The first was to mourn the loss of several of his crew. Second was the celebrate his entire crew, both the ones lost and the ones that remained. Third was to gather up the rest and get the sub. But priorities.

He stopped in front of a small bar. Not just any bar mind you, but the bar. Not with fancy italic letters either. There wasn't even a capital letter. The captain figured this would be as good a place as any to complete step one and begin step two. The later was sure to take much longer and involved the afternoon, night and possibly the entirety of the next day. One must celebrate properly. Ahab put his hand to the door and opened it.

"Maidoooo!" came the call as he stepped in. The voice was not male and did not sound the least been Osakan. A male voice snorted from within, which led to several vulgarities in Japanese, English, and Russian being spewed forth in the original (female) voice.

The interior was dingy, a touch crowded with furniture and under-occupied by customers, and dominated by the banged up bar the female was behind. She was wrapped in a very traditional kimono, multi-layered with a hint of peach on the bottom-most layer. Her shoulder-length black hair framed a pale, severe face that was still somehow cute. Dark eyes, a peculiar grey-black glowered at Ahab above pursed lips.

"'Ello lassie," Ahab said with a voice that sounded like a bucket of gravel through a wood chipper falling down a mountain, "'Ave ye any rum?" the suspiciously attractive pirate asked as he took a seat on a stool at the bar. One would almost swear he sparkled in his button down shirt and blue jeans.

"Spiced, coconut, or plain?" the woman asked, setting a shot glass on the top of the bar.

"Ole spiced fer starrterrs," Ahab said with a grin and too many R's.

"That's how I prefer it myself," the woman replied. She spun around to the shelves surrounding the dingy mirror behind her and pulled a bottle down. a second later and the shot glass had a finger of golden-brown liquid in it.

Ahab held the glass up and said quietly, "Fer Steve," before he slammed the drink back and set the glass on the bar top again, gesturing for another.

Arching an eyebrow, the woman did as directed, filling the glass a second time.

"Fer Lucy," he said an slammed it back. Four more names and four more shots were had. "May th' reefs fall a'fore ye mateys," he said and downed a final shot.

The woman filled the shot glass once more, then swept up a second glass and poured a little for herself. "Absent friends." She knocked it back.

Ahab saluted her with the glass and knocked it back as well. "An' now we 'elebrate th' ones wot remain," the pirate said with a gleam in his eye. "Ah trust th' Sable Knight's not lost all?"

"Not all," Saeko agreed. She slid the bottle next to his glass and turned back to the bar, pulling down a full duplicate of the first. "You've not come in here before, Captain."

"Never been with out me boat a'fore," Ahab replied, "Tis longest Ah've been on land in a long time," he started muttering about "sea rats" and "mantle pieces."

Saeko mentally counted how many shots had already been downed, then quietly concluded that his loss was her gain. She poured another shot. "You don't seem the sort to misplace a boat, Ahab."

"T'wasn't misplaced," Ahab nearly growled, not that one could really tell the difference, before downing his shot, "Some Japanese sea rats sunk 'er. An' Ah'm gonna hunt 'em down." He grinned a rather sadistic grin, "E'en picked out ahn elec-trick far-place so's Ah kin nail thier hides or're me mantle."

Saeko's eyebrow arched again. "Pirates preying on pirates? How unusual."

"Tis wot Ah do Miss," Ahab replied, "An' corrupt navy tha' be firin' on civilians. A submarine ag'inst a merchant vessel at that." Ahab paused for a moment, "A'course, if'n I hadn't blown up th' firrst two...but they far'd th' first shot, so's Ah was legal."

The other eyebrow joined the first on Saeko's forehead. "A submarine?"

"Aye," Ahab replied like that was all the explanation needed.

"A Japanese submarine."

"Aye."

The woman looked thoughtful. "Well, that escalated."

"Ye don' sound serprised," Ahab replied.

"Only by the nature of it. Things have been tense." Saeko poured herself a shot. "Someone was bound to decide to bring the military in. Especially after the bit with those mecha."

"Ah was in Central American fer tha' one," Ahab mused, ""Erd it got messy."

"Very. I'm still not sure who was doing what to whom." Saeko shrugged. "So what's next, Captain?"

"Coconut an' celebratin' the crew tha' is still 'ere," the captian said with a grin.

Seako reached under the bar and produced a coconut. Without any indication where it came from, she brought a machete down onto it, splitting it in two and covering the bar top in coconut milk. The two sides fell away from one another. Saeko poured rum into the two halves and pushed one to Ahab. "Well, that was messy."

Ahab picked up his half and saluted Sareko before drinking the rum down. "Th' best way ta drink it," he grinned.

Saeko opened the second bottle of rum and slid it over to Ahab. "Drink all you want. I'm charging you for both bottles."

Ahab shrugged, took the bottle and brough it to his lips. He didn't set it down until enough time had passed to drown a lesser man. "A fine vintage," He declared before turning his head and delivering a mighty belch.

"Wine has vintages, swab." Saeko shrugged. "But it is tasty."

Ahab waved his hand dismissively and finished the bottle.

"Three bottles." Saeko wandered into the back, then returned with another bottle. "So, once you finish your hopefully very expensive bender, how exactly are you planning to exact your revenge?"

"Gettin' a sub o' me own," Ahab said, "An' then Ah'm gonna go a huntin'."

"Do you even know how to run a sub? It seems like it'd be a little trickier than a merchy."

Ahab looked like he had been slapped, "Missy, if'n tis in th' water, Ah kin sail it."

Saeko poked Ahab's bishy-sculpted pec. "Subs don't have sails, boyo."

"A figure o' speech," Ahab replied, eyeing the finger suspiciously, "Neither does a merchant vessel, but ye still sail it."

Saeko chuckled. "So you plan to declare war with the Maritime Self Defense Force with a sub."

"Ah nuclear sub," Ahab corrected, "An' no. I only wan' one of 'em."

"You figure it will work like that?"

"Nay," that sadistic grin creeped up again, "Ah 'spect thar will be much more fun 'an that."

A shadow blocked the overhead lights, looming over them. Saeko tilted her chin upward. "Onna?"

The pale skinned woman looked down at Saeko, then Ahab. She placed a hand on his shoulder.

Saeko glanced over to Tsubasa, who was still sitting at their traditional booth. The Tengu shrugged.

Ahab turned an look to the pale woman. He took her hand with a smile and kissed it gently, "Long time lass," he said.

Onna smiled, then slapped Ahab hard. After which she bent and kissed his forehead.

Saeko gaped. "What was that?"

"Th' slap was prob'ly 'cause Ah left wit' th' risin' sun," Ahab mused, "An th' kiss for wot came a'fore tha'." He gave the bartending Knight a wink.

"I didn't need to know that."

Onna gave a mysterious smile.

Ahab's grin matched it.

-----

Ahab stepped out of the bar, a rather hefty bill paid and the remainder of a bottle of spiced rum in his hand. He had managed to drink her dry, of rum at least. It was time to find a new watering hole.

Lucius pulled around the corner sharply; his bassist was missing AGAIN, he'd covered half the bars in the city looking for him, and beaten up three separate gangs of prohuman thugs. And it wasn't even properly dark yet. He sighed to himself before looking up, and applying the brakes sharply, stopping just barely shy of a strange bishounen standing in the middle of the street, clutching a bottle of rum. 'What in th'hell ye doin' standin' there, laddie! I nearly hit ye! If'n I were a Largoist, ye'd be flat by nae!'

"If'n ye were a Largoist, Ah'd be drinkin' ye' b33r!" Ahab replied with a laugh and a swig of his rum, "Wot be bringin' ye 'ere, catboy?"

Lucius rolled his eyes, dropping Nicole back down onto two wheels. 'I'm seekin' my bassist. Have ye nae seen him, laddie? About yay high, brown hair, dog ears an' tail, wearin' jeans an' a torn-up Metallica T-shirt?'

"Nay," Ahab replied, "Unless the Sable Knight got 'im first. Th' place wos clean though, so Ah doubt it."

'Sable kni...' Lucius looked over to the sign for the bar, and swallowed hard. 'Okay, he's got more sense'n tae go there. However, ye look like ye're going fer a pub crawl. Wannae climb on an' join me in searching fer the wee dimwit?'

"Where ye be lookin' fer 'im?" Ahab asked, "As Ah'm on a mission this night."

'In the natural habitat of the bassist, laddie. Bars, clubs, strip clubs, underground gambling dens, an' the odd pub. Maybe a pawn shop if any are open this time o' evenin', tryin' tae pawn his kidneys fer beer money.' Lucius chuckled, leaning Nicole over to prop himself up on one foot. 'Though even a bassist knows nae tae approach Saeko at home. Tha's a fine way tae wake up as a soprano singer.'

"Aye," Ahab nodded in agreement, "Le's be off then!" he laughed, took another swig of his rum and climbed on the back of the bike. "This nay look suspicious a'tall."

Lucius chuckled. 'Nae, laddie. Ye're jus' a wee bit heavier than my usual passengers, mind.' He grinned over his shoulder to the captain before accelerating away hard, leaving a cloud of exhaust and echoing engine noises behind them.

---

A few minutes' hard riding later, and Lucius stopped in front of a small bar full of drunken businessmen. The beer was flowing, the American pop music was playing, and the singing was just starting. 'I donnae see him, but ye think we should go fer a wee drink anyway?'

Ahad took a swig from his bottle, then looked at it with disapproval. "Aye," he tossed the bottle behind him, where is smashed against the windshield of a hybrid that promptly struck a light pole, "An they better 'ave rum."

'Aye, they'd better.' Lucius dismounted, propping Nicole up on her stand and striding into the bar. '<BARKEEP! One pint rum, one scotch whisky, no piss-water!'

The bartender gave a Look to the odd couple of catboy and bishounen, and shrugged before pouring out a pint glass of the two spirits. "There. I speak English, no need to mangle language, okay?"

"Fine, whe'll mangle Anglish then," Ahab stated as he took his glass and drank it in one gulp, "Ye be callin this rum? Tis'nt fit fer drownin' rats! Gimme a real drink," he demanded. The extreme mismatch between face and voice caused the bartender to just stand there and stare.

Lucius sighed, drinking deeply from his own pint glass. 'Aye, he has a point, laddie. Nae only is this nae fit tae drown a fairy, but this is irish whiskey. It has an E in it. Ye cannae go servin' irish whiskey tae a scotsman, laddie. Tha's a fine way tae lose yer bar.'

The bartender blanched, before reaching under the bar. He returned with a pair of bottles; one unmarked save for a scrawl of 'RUMM' in permanent marker, the other a bottle of single malt scotch. In his other hand was a combat shotgun. "Drink up, or drink elsewhere. You cause trouble, I start shooting, customers start shooting, factionists full of holes." He nodded to the businessmen, more than a few of whom were missing various lengths of finger.

"If'n this don' be rum worthy o' me lips," Ahab glowered, "Ah'll be feedin ye that shotgun. But nay through ye' mout'." Ahab kepts his eyes locked on the bartender as he opened the bottle and poured a glass, stopping right at the brim with out ever looking. He set the bottle down, picked up the glass and gulped it back. He slowly set the glass down, eyes never leving the bar keep. "Ye get ta keep yer purity laddie," Ahab finally said, "But dont be servin' me tha' piss ag'in. Y'ear me?"

The bartender nodded. "I ear you. But you finish bottle, and you leave. Upsetting regular customers.'

Lucius leaned low over the bar, growling. 'Upsetting them, laddie? They kin go shove their racism where the sun doesnea shine, lad. If'n they object tae the factions, they kin go piss off tae Korea. An' if it's my ears they're objectin' tae, they kin tell me an' I'll claw their fookin' eyes out.'

The bartender shook his head, pointing with the bottle of scotch before opening and pouring into a fresh pint glass. 'Not ears or factions they object to. Customers don't like heavy metal band. Too loud, too brash, too western, too... Too europe!'

Lucius turned, giving the crowd the finger, claw extended. 'Go fuck yerselves.' He turned back to Ahab, raising his glass. 'Death tae all but metal!'

"Aye!" Ahab raised his glass, "Death ta all but metahl!" He down the glass in one gulp again before smshing the glass to peices and drinking straight from the bottle.

Lucius shrugged, draining first the glass and the bottle, before setting light to the remainder of the whiskey in the other glass with his lighter. 'Ontae the next bar, laddie, afore we get mobbed again.'

Ahab nodded in agreement and took the bottle with him, "Ah'm keepin' it."

Lucius shrugged, paying the bartender with a swipe of his credit card and heading back out to Nicole, pausing to headbutt an angry businessman on the way out. 'Somewhere nicer, later. I think I know tha place; big alternative bar, jus' afore the motorway.'

Ahab nodded an tossed various forms of currency at the bartended before following Luc out.

Lucius mounted up on Nicole again, starting her engine and patting her fuel tank affectionately. 'C'mon, lass. Off again.'

"Yer talkin' ta ye bike, right?" Ahad asked with one eye brow quirked.

Lucius nodded. 'Aye, what of it? D'ye nae talk tae ye boat?'

"Aye, jus' makin' sure," Ahab climbed on the back of the bike.

Lucius chuckled, pulling off again and heading for the next bar.

---

On arrival, Lucius parked Nicole in a handicapped space and dismounted, nodding to the doorman as he headed for the door. 'Aye, laddie. Two of us the night, ken? Kick some other scunner out if 's too full.'

The bouncer nodded, opening the door for them with a grin. "Always. When're you bringing the Offenders here, anyway?"

Lucius chuckled. 'Soon's Lola lets us sign a non-exclusive contract, an' I'm nae chasing magical girls around th'city on schoolnights.'

Ahab looked at Luc, "Ah heard stories, but Ah dina thin' ye went fer th' magical nemore."

Lucius chuckled. 'Nae like tha', lad. I'm principal o' the magical girl academy, up on yonder hill. Teachin' wee lassies how tae do magic, defend themselves, an' fight evil.'

"Ah," Ahab replied as the entered the bar."a

Lucius paused just after entering, ears flicking upright as the wave of noise flowed over him. Loud heavy metal was playing over a speaker system, while knots of people were scattered around the bar, occupying tables, secondary bars, and walls with convenient shelving. Lucius grinned, heading to the nearest bar and attracting the attention of the bartender; a burly bunny-eared man with a scar running from his lip up past his eye. 'Kevin! How's the mead the day?'

The bunny-man grinned, patting the barrel on his shoulder before leaning over to set it on the bar. "Just got a fresh batch out tonight, boy. Nice and strong, just as you like it. Who's your boyfriend?"

Lucius chuckled. 'Some friend o' Skorp's I picked up. Saved him from Saeko, takin' him on a pub crawl while I look for somethin'.'

"Ah, your bassist missing again?" The bartender grinned. "Probably in some barmaid's bed. Not one of ours, though; they're all on duty, save one the delivery bunny knocked out while dropping off some of that whisky you hooked us up with."

"Ah've not 'ad mead ina while," Ahab mused, "An Ah sail fer ORAhZ."

The bartender nodded. "Two meads, then!" He grinned, tugging a pair of metal flagons from under the bar and filling them from the barrel. After a while, he started to shake the barrel to encourage the contents to move faster, eventually ending up with two meads to hand to the drinkers. "Enjoy."

Lucius raised his flagon in salute, before upending it and drinking down the glutinous mass as it dribbled out.

Ahab followed suit, not stopping until the glass was dry. The captain wiped his mouth with the back of his hand, "That was a fine mug o' mead," he declared.

Lucius nodded, extracting the last few drops with his tongue before setting the flagon back down. 'Aye, indeed. Now, fer the harder stuff. Ye got any o' tha' cinnamon-flavoured absinthe left, Kev?'

The bartender grinned, producing a bottle from beneath the bar and pouring a shot glass for each of them before sliding them across the bar.

Lucius picked his up, sniffing at it before downing in one go. He took a deep breath, exhaling and taking in another, before the fur on his ears and tail puffed up suddenly. 'Man, tha's good stuff...'

Ahab gave the glass a sniff, "Wot be this?"

"Cinnamon-flavoured absinthe, boyo. Just knock it back and don't drop the glass." The bartender explained, reaching over to take the shot glass from Lucius' hand.

Ahab quirked an eye brow, looking somewhat offended at the suggestion that mere alcohol could make him drop a glass. He knocked back the shot and calmly set the glass down. "Tha' was quite tasteh as well."

Lucius snapped back to reality, and proceeded to pat the fur on his tail back down. 'The catnip adds a fair kick tae tha', Kev. Good goin' wi' it.'

"Catnip?" Ahab asked, looking at the glass.

Lucius nodded. 'Aye, catnip. Gives it a fair kick, nae?'

Ahab shrugged, "Ne'er had it no other way," he replied.

Lucius sighed. 'Ach, ye're missing out, lad.' He turned back to the bartender, his grin widening. 'Moar!'

The bartender chuckled, providing more mead and catnip-absinthe, along with various shots of various other spirits, and a few pints of ales.

Ahab accepted the various alcohols and downed them each in the order they were laid out, commenting on thier flavor and body. It wasn't until the final shot that the previously consumed booze began to show an effect. "Exshellent!"

Lucius kept pace with the captain easily, showing barely any effect from the pints of alcohol content consumed. 'Aye indeed. Nae, let us begone, for my quest continues.'

"Aye ash does mine!" Ahab agreed.

Lucius chuckled, heading back out to Nicole, weaving a little. He nodded to the doorman on the way out, who let a handful of people into the bar through the open door. 'Onwards!'

"Ta vict'ry an' drunken revelry!" Ahab agreed.

'Tae findin' me bassist!' Lucius raised a hip-flask, taking a swig before offering it to Ahab. 'An' tae the CATastrophe club; I've been lookin' fer the scunner all the night, an' he's probablae gone tae where the titties are.'

"Aye, they can be quite th' lure," Ahab nodded sagely before taking a swing and returning the flask.

Lucius tucked the flask back into a pocket as he mounted up, patting Nicole gently before starting her up.

Ahab hopped on the back, producing a nearly empty bottle of rum for seemingly no where, finished it off and chucked it behind him with callous disregard for the taxi that intercepted it.

Lucius pulled away as the taxi crashed into the space they'd been occupying, heading off at speed for the club.

---

After a rather longer ride, Lucius pulled up at the club, pulling past a long queue to the side door. 'Rockstar parkin', gotta love it.' He grinned over his shoulder as he stopped the engine.

"Aye," Ahab replied and turned to look towards the road and the people gathered with signs, "Wot's tha' about?" The captain pointed to the protesters.

'Anti-factionist scunners.' Lucius gave the protesters the finger as he dismounted. One hurled a bottle, but found it looping back to hit him in the back of the head in a shower of glass and yellow liquid.

"Ah, Mor'n a few ov 'em concern'd wit' the sexual pref'rence of ole DT," Ahab chuckled as they entered the side door.

Lucius shrugged. 'Lola'd be the authority on tha', an' she says they're mostly wrong.' Lucius waved to a dog-eared bouncer as they stepped through the door, closing it behind them. 'Still, nice tae see Lola's opened the club properly again. Need tae get people in tae make money.'

"T'was closed?" Ahab asked.

'Tae non-regulars, aye. Was fun enough; free drinks nae rules, but she was nae makin' a profit, an' held out on DT until he let her open again.' Lucius chuckled. 'Or tha's wha' she claims, anyways.'

Ahab laughed and then ducked a split second before Lucius was struck with a projectile sandal. "Ahab!" Came an accented voice, "You left me in Roanapur!" A fairly short, Hispanic looking woman stalked up to the pair.

"Ah 'ad a feelin' Ah 'ad fergot sumthin'," Ahab mused and stroked his beardless chin.

Lucius rubbed his head, grumbling. 'Ye forgot a sandal-throwing local girl?' He turned to the source of the voice, his grumbling dying off to be replaced with a purrr. 'Why aye, lassie.'

"Chankla," the girl corrected, "And not just any chankla throwing local girl," she brushed her hair back ,revealing a pointed ear, "I'm the chankla throwing local girl that runs the entire South and Central American operations," her demeanor changed instantly to a sweet innocent elf girl, "You can call me Rosa."

Lucius raised an eyebrow, extending his hand. 'Well, hello Rosa. I'm Lucius Ogilvy, o' the clan Ogilvy.'

Rosa accepted the had and shook it, "So you're the one all the girls tell me about."

Lucius leaned down, raising her hand to kiss it softly. 'Aye, problae. Am I gettin' good reviews?'

"Mas o menos," the elf girl replied in Spanish and shook her hand in a "so-so" gesture.

Lucius cocked his head and ears. 'Mmhm. So, ye just got in, aye? Kin I get ye a drink, perhaps?'

"Business first," she replied, "Gotta see Skorp. Headed there now actually."

"He be a touch displeased obout th' shipment," Ahab interjected.

"Oh no, this is about other matters," Rosa said, "Cartels and mines and so forth."

Lucius nodded. 'Och, aye. Come find me when ye're done though, aye? Be fair poor o' me tae let a braw lassie like yeself go unescorted, y'ken?' He grinned, wiggling a kitty ear.

"I have no idea what you just said," Rosa replied sweetly.

There was a giggle from behind Rosa, accompanied by a pair of bunny ears and an attached bikini-clad Lola. "He says to come find him when you're done with business, so he can hit on you some more." She leaned around Rosa, eying Ahab carefully. "Nice hat."

Rosa chuckled a bit at that.

"Aye, t'is a fine hat," Ahab agreed, "Been wit' me these many year-"

Lola reached up, snatching the hat neatly off his head and settling it between her ears. "Looks far cuter on me, though."

Ahab looked at her for a moment, "Ah canae disagree wit' ye on that," the pirate replied.

Lola grinned brightly, before tugging a bunny-eared headband from hammerspace and hopping up to plant it on Ahab's head. "There. Fair trade~" She giggled, before smacking Rosa on the backside and walking off, tail wiggling behind her.

"Ah'm not really sure wot ta do wit' this," Ahab mused.

Rosa giggled and waved on her way out the door, "See you later Capitan, catboy," she nodded to Lucius.

Lucius waved, grinning. 'I think ye're meant tae wear it, lad...' He trailed off as his gaze caught Rosa's backside, purring quietly. 'Dayum.'

"Aye," Ahad replied, "Tis a fa'r view from th' aft. An' Ah meant me hat."

'Enjoy yer new headgear; she's nae in the habit o' givin' back what she steals. Took a fair few o' my band shirts a while ago.' Lucius shrugged. 'Looks like ye're a bunny now.'

Ahab shrugged, "Whar be th' booze?" His mind went back to the prior task.

Lucius pointed to the bar. 'Thar it be, laddie. The one wi' me bassist proppin' it up. Let's get hammered.' Lucius ambled over to the bar, and reached down to pull the tail of said bassist. 'Ye've been missing all night, laddie. Get backstage.'

The bassist grumbled something unintelligible from beneath his hat, and shambled off, rubbing his tail.

"Rum!" Ahab demanded cheerfully, "An Ah know ye got th' good stuff cuss Ah deliver it."

The bartender grinned, producing a bottle of said rum, along with a mug-shaped chunk of ice with a handle set into it. "Heard about your ship, cap'n. Have a bottle on the house; this stuff's about to get real expensive being airlifted over."

Ahab took the mug, not even noticing the cold, "Ah'll be on th# seas ag'in ina no time," Ahab grinned just a bit sadistically, "Gotta be findin' th' bastards wot's done it." He downed the mug in one go and refilled it. "Ah need a mold fer these," he said looking a the ice mug.

The bartender nodded into the back. "Talk to Skorpion; it's a Largoist thing. Saves watering down the booze, and on washing mugs. Just toss 'em into a bucket of hot water, fish the handles out clean and fresh. You want some hot wings with that?"

"How hot they be?" Ahab asked.

"We go from 'tingly', through 'ouch' to 'hellfire chili'. Anything over a medium requires you to wash your hands before touching the girls, though."

"Hmmm, Ah've 'erd tales of that Hellfire chille," Ahab said,

"Probably have, yes. We're obliged to warn you that it could cause burns, scarring, or a runaway reaction with the phosphorous in your body in extreme cases. And that it can melt metal fillings." The bartender grinned. "Health and safety aside, sound nice?"

"Delicious!" the captain exclaimed, "Ah'll take twe'ny."

The bartender nodded, tapping the order through on a tablet. Shortly after, the plate arrived on a conveyor belt; near-invisible flames dancing over the sauce. The bartender picked up the plate with a pair of metalworking tongs, moving it gingerly over to the counter. A single drip of sauce parted company with the plate on the way, carving a small crater into the floor as it hit. "There y'are, enjoy your tissue damage. If you want ice water, just scream and I'll give you a bucket. Decontamination's over there when you're done." He gestured with the tongs to a deep sink with warning signs pasted above it.

Ahab took the plate with a look of glee and grabbed a wing with his bare hand, "A wit bit tingly," he stated before popping the wing in to his mouth and sucking the meat clean off the bone. "A fine bird indeed."

Lucius raised an eyebrow. 'That's nae good fer ye fingers, lad. D'ye nae want tae ha' flesh on 'em come th'morn?' He settled on a barstool, sipping at a pint of scotch the bartender slid over to him, and tugging a nearby catgirl into his lap.

Ahab simply licked his fingers clean and grabbed the next one with a "Do I look concerned?" look on his face.

Lucius shrugged, telekinetically snagging one of the wings; holding it steady to tear the meat off the bones with his tongue before setting them in a water-filled bowl on the counter. After a few seconds, the bowl started to steam and boil from the remains of the sauce. 'Delicious as always, though.' He grinned, running his un-sauced hands over the catgirl in his lap. 'Could do with some potato wedges, though. Barkeep?'

The bartender nodded. "Yeah, yeah, I gotcha. And I'll stick it on your tab like usual, since you seem to only play here for bar credit."

Lucius grinned. 'I'd only spend it on fast food, booze, an' girls anyway. Saves wastin' it, ken?'

The bartender chuckled. "Yeah, I guess. Wine, women, and song. Good name for a titty bar, that. Maybe an upmarket, classy place."

"Not quite th' ring to it as th' Sunken Norwegian," Ahab replied, "But i' sounds nice."

Lucius nodded. 'Aye, that it does. Maybe I'll visit it someday, if'n ye'll let me intae the place.'

The bartender chuckled. "Maybe, maybe not. Depends on if you insist on disturbing the regulars, and can keep your paws off the staff."

Ahab laughed at that and tossed the wing bones in to the wrong trash can. "...Oops."

Lucius and the bartender both dived for cover. After a few seconds, the trash can ignited and exploded, sending a ring of smoke and fire towards the ceiling. After a few more seconds, a team of foxgirls with fire extinguishers surrounded the fire, smothering it in CO2 and causing a low mist to flood the room.

Ahab patted out a spark that had nestled in one of his bunny ears and looked to Lucius and bartender, "They come out ev'ry time that 'appens?"

The bartender nodded. "Yes, and a second offense means they turn the extinguishers on YOU, as well. A third one, and it's the catapult."

"Well thar goes tha' idea," Ahab muttered as he oogled the foxgirls.

Lucius nodded. 'Jes wait 'til the show gets goin' properly. Then ye'll get an eyeful.' He clambered out from behind the table, and settled back onto his stool just in time to receive his bowl of potato wedges. 'Plus, ye can take 'em off tae get private dances.'

"Ah don' think me first mate would take to kindly ta that," Ahab replied as he turned to watch, "Ah think she may 'ave a wee bit o' a crush on 'er Cap'n."

Lucius chuckled. 'Well, what she doesnae know cannae hurt ye, aye? They're private fer a reason, after all.' He dug into the bowl, fishing wedges out with his claws and dunking them into a bowl of ketchup before eating them. 'I'll nae tell on ye, lad.'

Ahab chuckled, "Ye don' know Krystal," he replied, "She's got a nose about 'er."

Lucius nodded. 'Ahh. Tha'd be a problem, I guess. Cannae go back tae her smellin' of different perfume an' with strange fur on yer clothes.' He grinned, leaning back against a backrest the stool didn't have. 'Luckily, Kat's fine wi' me playin' wi' Lola's girls. She jes wants me tae share if'n I bring any back wi' me."

Ahab chuckled at that, leanjng back against the bar. "Speakin' o' hwich," Ahab said, "Thar be me crew at th' firrst table." The captian pointed to a table with a motley crew of metas and humans in horribly matched clothing, whooping and hollering. Several empty bottles attested to the face they had also been honouring thier comrades. "Oh dear," Ahab said as his first mate clambered up on stage and tossed her shirt to the crowd.

Lucius chuckled, eyeing her, his tail twitching behind him. 'Aye. If Lola catches her, she'll problea git offered a job.'

Ahab chuckled a bit. On stage Kristal was holding a mug up high and leading her table in a horribly off key rendition of Alestorm's "Famous Old Spiced." By the time she had gotten to the corus, several other tables had joined in.

"Oh, pour me a slug of it! Throw me a mug of it! Bring me a jug of that Famous Ol' Spiced!"

Ahab grinned and tossed his bottle in a perfect arc, the neck landed in Kristal's hand like she was waiting for it. A cheer went up from the tables as she started prancing across them, pouring everyone a shot.

'Impressive. Nice pair on the lass, as well.' Lucius's grin widened. 'Cannae say much about her singin' voice, though.'

Ahab nodded in agreement and laughed, "Aye 'er singin' be like a walrus givin' birth ta machin'ry shop."

Lucius nodded. 'Aye. That, or a cat wi' a tail caught in a birthin' walrus. On fire.'

"Aye," Ahab nodded, "No bet'r lass on the seas though."

Lucius nodded, then looked over as a series of clatters came from the main stage. 'Ach. I gots tae go, laddie. I'm due on stage. Enjoy yer rum.' He smacked Abab on the back, and trotted off to the backstage door, tugging his guitar from his jacket as he went.

Ahad saluted him with the bug and looked for his bottle before remembering he had tossed it to his first mate. "Well, bett'r git 'er offa th' stage," Ahab muttered to himself as he went to join his crew (and get another drink).

---

Summary:
Ahab explains to Skorp how he lost his ship. And Skorp's cargo. Of iron ore and other people's arms.
Skorpion throws him a bone; bring him the heads of the people who sunk it.
Or be fired. On a rocket. Into space. And personally liable for the losses.

Ahab goes drinkin'.
Starting at t'bar.
RUM. And insults from Saeko.
And he catches up with an ex-girlfriend.

Out of the bar, and into traffic.
Lucius stops just shy of mowing down the bishie.
And takes Ahab off on a pub crawl, ostensibly to find his bassist.
No homo.

Typical Japanese bar, right?
Bad rum. Irish whiskey.
Ye cannae go servin' irish whiskey tae a scotsman!
Back with a nice single malt, and some 'RUMM'.
Yakuza bar. Whoops.
And they object to Lucius. Not because of factions, or kitty ears, but because he fronts a metal band.
Scunners.

Alternative bar!
Goth chicks, strong booze, a doorman, and a bunny-man bartender.
Mead, and cinnamon-flavoured absinthe. With catnip in.
Ahab one-shots a taxi with a bottle.

Off to the CATastrophe club; titties and good rum.
Lucius meets Rosa; A central american brown elf girl, in charge of Skorp's operations in her area.
She's heard of Lucius. And he's apparently getting decent reviews.
Business before booze.
And she can't understand his accent.
Lola translates, and steals Ahab's hat. Because it looks far cuter on her.
Rosa heads off for a meeting with Skorp.
Lucius watches her leave.
Ahab gets a pair of bunny ears in trade for his hat.

BOOZE.
HOT WINGS.
Hellfire chili hot wings.
With health warnings.
Foxgirls with fire extinguishers to contain the chili.
And they get YOU with them after a second incident. A third one? Catapult.

Ahab finds his crew.
Lucius sends his bassist off to get ready for his set.
Drunken antics from Ahab's crew.
Topless drunken antics!
Lucius heads off for his set.
DarTan: The Unspeakable Cook.
Katrina: Bitch, She Eats People
Mimi: Varying Shades of Gray and A Concerning Amount of Red.
Ahab: Hail, Huntsmaster.
Stone: His Rap Sheet Is Better Than Wrapping Papper.
<<

Oblivion

User avatar

Posts: 51

Joined: Thu May 01, 2014 10:46 pm

Post Sat Nov 22, 2014 5:06 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

Ohayo, Lexi-chaaan~
Location: FGTL HQ
Authors: Skorpy, Oblivion
Characters: Alexis, Kawasaki, and Yakashima.
Timestamp: Sometime.



Alexis had been sitting alone in her room, playing Titanfall and swearing at the console. "Why is it so fucking hard to shoot people in these fucking games!" She cursed before she was killed in game. "Damnit!" She yelled as she attempted to quell the urge to throw her controller from the roof. Luckily, she became distracted by a phone call. She pulled her phone from her pocket and answered it. "Hi Mary." She greeted, quelling her rage to the point where it only sounded like mild irritation.

"Hi, Alexis. There's a couple of magical girls here asking for you. Can you come pick them up before they eat all my cookies?" Mary paused, with rummaging noises in the background. "<No, I'm not going to show you the nuke.>"

"Magical girls? Kawa-chan and Ya-chan?" Alexis asked as she stood from the floor. "Xbox, off!" She yelled causing it to ask if she was sure. "Yes." Was her response, and the Xbox turned off. "At least it does that right..." She mumbled as she turned off the TV. "Okay Mary, I'm coming down. Be sure to save a cookie for me." She said as she dashed into the hall, locking the door behind her, before heading for the lobby.

"Alright... <Put that down!>" Mary hung up suddenly, as something made sparkling noises on the other end of the line.

---

As Alexis arrived, the magical girls were peering into a snowglobe while Mary was extinguishing a small fire in a wastepaper basket. "Alexis! I got them distracted! There's cookies on the desk still, but can you pass the fire extinguisher from the next room?"

"How did - nevermind, I'm on it." Alexis said as she ran to the next room to grab the extinguisher and returned to help combat the flame. "What happened?" She asked after the fire had been suppressed, looking rather worriedly at the pair of distracted magical girls.

Mary sighed. "One of them got over-excited, and started sparkling all over the paperwork..." She pointed to the desk, which was covered in little scorchmarks. "Then things caught fire."

"<It's so glittery...>"

"<Shiiiny...>"

"I threw the snowglobe at them to distract them, and that seems to have worked..." Mary stirred the bin with a broomhandle, before blasting it with a fire extinguisher again.

"We must never let them near the nuke." Alexis told Mary as she imagined what might happen, with eyes wide from shock. "Like... Ever."

Mary nodded. "Or the coffee machine. In fact, don't give them coffee. PLEASE don't give them coffee." She kicked the bin, before turning the fire extinguisher on the magical girls to wake them from the snowglobe trance. "Hey!"

Kawasaki looked up sharply as she was blasted with carbon dioxide, looking around in confusion. "<What... What... Lexi-chan~>" She smiled as she spotted Alexis, and leaped to tackle her. Her leap was stopped prior to leaving the ground, however, by a foot hooked around her ankle, causing her to faceplant into the floor.

"<No, Kawa-chan. You've been told about glomping people.>" Yakashima turned and frowned, hands on her hips. "<Also, hello Alexi-san.>"

"<Owwie...>" Kawasaki stood up, rubbing her nose and walking over to hug Alexis.

It was then that Johnathan walked through the lobby with a tablet in hand, reading off a series of names beneath his breath. Passing through as if all were normal. "Hello Mary... Alexis." He greeted as he passed the group.

"Umm. Hi?" Alexis said, tilting an ear to the side. "<Anyway, what are you two troublemakers doing here?>" She asked as she ruffled Kawasaki 's hair in a playful manner before returning her hug.

Kawasaki grinned. "<You said we should hang out sometime, right? Well, here we are!>"

Yakashima watched Johnathan wander through, seemingly zoning out for a moment. As she snapped back to reality, she nodded, approaching to give Alexis a hug from the other side. "<She insisted. And we're not meant to be out on patrol for a while, so we have some free time.>"

Alexis adjusted herself so that she could hug both of the magical girls at once. "<Okay, but I have two rules. One: no coffee, and two: no going near the nuke.>" She said, counting the rules on her fingers as well. "<With that said, do you want to see my plushie collection?>"

The girls nodded, and Kawasaki raised her hand, bouncing excitedly. "<Yay plushies!>"

"<Alright then, let's go!>" Alexis declared, pointing in the direction they would have to go to get to her room with ears perked and her taiI wagging. "But first..." She walked over to the front counter and took a cookie. "<Now let's go!>" She corrected, nibbling on the cookie as she pointed in the same direction and began walking. "Thank you Mary!"

Mary waved as they headed off, settling back to her desk.

The magical girls tagged along with Alexis, Kawasaki bouncing along singing to herself about plushies, and Yakashima peering around at the contents of the corridors.

"<Maybe if we get bored we could head over to the target range for some fireworks.>" Alexis offered with a smile. After all what girl doesn't like guns?

Kawasaki squeed, bouncing from foot to foot. "<Yaaay fireworks~>"

Yakashima sighed. "<Please don't give her a ranged weapon. She's bad enough as it is.>"

"<What could go...>" Alexis trailed off, and she stopped walking as she pictured Kawasaki with a rocket launcher. Her ears folded back and she flinched as the fantasy came to a fiery end. "<Maybe we keep you two with small arms.>" She said as she continued walking. "<It'll be fine.>" She said with as small laugh. "It'll be fine..."

"<Then the safest option is probably to stand right in front of her.>" Snarked Yakashima.

Kawasaki frowned, smacking Yakashima's arm. "<Hey! I'm not THAT bad! I managed to score when we tried out for the archery club, didn't I?>"

Yakashima snorted. "Aye, y'did. <On MY target, though.>"

"<Well I'm a world class marksman, so maybe we can work on that. After all you're a couple of future Largoists, so a little practice can do some good.>" Alexis said cheerfully as she rested her hands on the girls shoulders. "<It'll be fun!>"

"<Future Largoist, huh?>" Yakashima looked over to Kawasaki. "<Maybe Kawa-chan, but I don't know WHAT I want to do yet...>"

Kawasaki grinned widely. "<You mean I could get paid for magical girling? AWESOME.>"

"<Being a Largoist isn't just about mayhem. We've got doctors, lawyers, scientist, vetrinarians, politicians, chefs... My point is, Largoism is a pretty wide career field.>" Alexis informed with a smile, her tail swaying as she spoke.

Yakashima nodded. "<I'll consider it, certainly. I do like doing science, after all...>" She paused. "<Wait, Largoist lawyers? Do they shoot the opposing legal team before they start the trial, or something?>"

"<No, believe it or not, but they're vampires, so mind control usually sees us through our legal troubles, though they are well versed in actual legal practices.>" Alexis said in a manner that made it hard to tell if she was joking.

Yakashima gave her a flat look. "<Vampire. Lawyers. You're kidding me, right?>"

"<I KNEW IT!>" Exclaimed Kawasaki. "<Vampires EVERYWHERE. That's why the whole anti-metahuman thing! Vampires! Eliminating competition! It makes PERFECT sense!>"

"<Oh gods, now she won't shut up about it for days...>"

"<Yes, vampire lawyers, and eliminating the competition for what? Most of us aren't bloodsuckers.>" Alexis pointed out, tilting an ear to the side as she looked to Kawasaki. "<I think it's just stupid people who are good at getting other stupid people to do what they want.>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<Yeah, but vampires are WAY more fun. Plus, WAY better fashion sense.>"

Yakashima giggled softly. "<Don't try their cooking, though. That DarkTan guy's only half vampire, and did you SEE what his noodles did to Oprah? Seriously.>"

Alexis burst out laughing. "<There's a story you're gonna have to tell me sometime.>" She said as they reached the elevator and called it down. "<My room's just down the hall after we get off the elevator.>"

"<Oh, I'll show you once I can get logged into the wi-fi. The signal is TERRIBLE down here. I've had no bars at all since we got near this place!>" Yakashima frowned, prodding at her phone.

"<Almost like we're in a fortress full of ECM gear, built and run by a paranoid nutcase?>" Kawasaki replied, smiling impishly.

"<Yeah, that's normal, we jam signals to and from unauthorized cellular or radio devices. >" Alexis explained as the elevator dinged to signal it's arival. "<Ok, the elevator is fast so be ready.>" Alexis cautioned as the trio entered the elevator, pressing the button for her floor after everyone was in.

"<Makes sense. Don't want people setting off bombs, or hacking into the systems. Plus, approving things means you can control them as well.>" Kawasaki remarked, looking up at the nearest camera.

Yakashima sighed. "<Watching everything, all the time. It seems to me that this Skorpion guy is as bad as the pro-humans...>"

"<Yeah, but I don't need to worry about being an experiment whose days are numbered by her usefulness thanks to him." Alexis said with a sad smile. "<It's thanks to him that I don't need to worry about the next operation. He's kinda like a dad to me.>" She said as her smile brightened up.

Yakashima nodded. "<He does seem like a pretty nice guy. Especially with helping set up the school and all, but isn't he, like, a cyborg or something?>"

Kawasaki sighed. "<Cyborg former super-soldier. He likes big guns, fast cars, spaghetti with meatballs, and long walks. His dislikes are racism, America, and being told what to do.>" She recited, before smiling proudly. On seeing Kawasaki's Look, she deflated sightly. "<I read the fansites, okay?>"

"<I like 'em.>" Alexis said as the elevator abruptly stopped and the door pinged open. "<This is our floor.>" She said as she led the two out and towards her room. "Here's a juicy bit of gossip for ya. He's dating my mom!" She declared proudly.

Kawasaki stopped walking, squeeing loudly and bouncing up and down. "<That's so cuuute! How long have they been dating? Has he made it to first base yet? How many dates have they had?>"

Yakashima facepalmed. "<Do you even know what 'first base' IS, Kawa-chan?>"

"<Nooo...>"

"<I think they've been dating for at least a few days... Or at least that's when I saw them kissing in the parking garage. They were dressed formal and it was an hour or two into the night when I saw them.>" Alexis recalled thoughtfully. "<Can you imagine if they got married?!>" She asked excitedly as her tail began to wag, a bit surprised at how fun gossiping actually was.

"<Then he'd be actually your father, not just sorta like one! That'd be TOTALLY awesome!>" Kawasaki bounced some more, giggling.

Yakashima rolled her eyes. "<So, you were spying on them?>"

"<I know! It'd be so awesome!>" Alexis cheered, her tail wagging excitedly before hearing Yakashima, which ceased all tail wagging. "<I... Well... Not on purpose.>" She said as she prodded her pointer fingers together. "<I was about to get a car for a sidequest that I... Neglected all day but needed to get done by tomorrow when I saw them. I was gonna ask about the fancy get ups when they kissed. So I panicked... And hid.>" She confessed with her ears folded back. "<I probably shouldn't have hid, but I didn't want to ruin the mood, and I couldn't resist the urge to... You know... Peek.>"

Yakashima nodded, reaching out and patting Alexis on the head gently. "<You were just in the right place at the right time, huh?>"

Alexis' ears perked after she had been patted on the head, her usual cheerfulness restored. "Mmhmm! <I'm glad for them!>" She said with a smile as they reached her room. "<Here we are.>" She said as she unlocked the door and opened it for the magical girls. "<Make yourselves at home... Just don't set anything on fire.>q " She advised.

Kawasaki nodded, promptly diving into the nearest pile of plushies.

Yakashima cleared a space and settled on the bed. "<This certainly is a lot of plush...>" She reached into a pile, extracting one of a ginger-eared catboy with a wide pointy-teethed grin. "<Wh... Why do you have a plushie of Lucius-sensei. Why IS there a plushie of Lucius-sensei in the first place?!?>"

"<I'm more curious on how I got this plush of an evil looking book.>" Alexis said as she closed the door and plucked a Necrowombicon plushie from it's place between a Saeko plushie and a Nacronomicon plushie. "<A lot of them just kinda... Show up.>"

Kawasaki stuck her head out of the pile to peer at the Saeko plushie. "<Hey, we've been warned about her!>"

Yakashima set the Lucius plushie aside, after realizing she was petting it's ears without thinking about it. "<Didn't you say your boyfriend hauls them out of crane machines for you?>"

"<Well, most of them, yeah. There are some that just appear.>" Alexis reached into a pile and pulled a nekomimi Yakashima plushie from it. "<Like this! I have never seen this one before!>" She said pointing to it. "<Kinda looks like you with kitty ears.>"

Yakashima looked at it, before reaching up to pat the top of her head, checking for kitty ears. "<What...>"

Kawasaki giggled. "<You have so many they're reproducing! I'd be surprised if they didn't have a production line going making new ones...>"

"<Ya-chan, could you peek into that bag on the nightstand. I keep a lot of them in there.>" Alexis said as she pointed to a jeweled bag surrounded by plushies on the counter.

Yakashima nodded, leaning over and peering into the bag. "<My god... It's full of plushies...>"

Kawasaki giggled, digging through the pile on the bed, turning up plushies of various fictional and non-fictional magical girls, a Sable Princess Saeko plushie with plush bloodstains, and even a few Largoists and Largoist vehicles.

After a while, Yakashima pulled her hand out of the bag, holding a plushie of Alexis in a magical girl outfit, wielding a large plush cannon. "<What.>"

" It's adorable!" Alexis squealed, not realizing it was her. "<That outfit is so cute!>" She said accedentally letting herself act girly. She climbed out to the bed to get a closer look, her tail wagging as she did. "<She's got her own little cannon, and those ears are just- Wait a second...>" She said her ears perking and her eyes narrowing as she examined the face and outfit. "That's me!" She said, falling back onto a pile of plushies as she pointed to it.

Yakashima nodded. "<It is indeed. Is there something you're not telling us?>"

Kawasaki popped up from the plushies like a meerkat. "<She doesn't SEEM like a magical girl... I mean, she's a girl and she's magic, but not a magical girl.> Y'ken?"

"<What do you mean I don't even OWN an outfit like that!>" Alexis said as she continued to point accusingly at the plushie, a blush forming on her cheeks. "<And besides, I don't wear girly things...>"

"<You don't? Not even a dress?>" Yakashima advanced on Alexis, grinning. "<Kawa-chan!>"

"Haaai!"

"<Check her closet. If there's a dress in there, she's wearing it for us. And we're teaching her to wear it properly. And makeup, too. Maybe heels as well if we have any her size.>"

Kawasaki saluted. "Haihai~" She turned, opened the closet, and proceeded to leaf through the hangars inside it.

Alexis leaped from her plush pile to tackle Kawasaki to the ground (without harming her) "S-stay out of there!" She said, forgetting to speak Japanese while the blush on her cheeks deepened.

Kawasaki squirmed out of Alexis' grip, grinning. "<Nope~ Now we know you're hiding something~>"

Yakashima took the opportunity to slip around Alexis, poking at the closet. "<So, let's see what you're hiding~>"

Alexis panicked after Kawasaki squirmed free and turned to see Yakashima opening her closet. "<That's rude you know!>" She yelled before throwing a large plushie at her, following it up by tackling her into a pile of plush.

Kawasaki, left un-tackled, dug into the closet. "<Yeah, but you totally need to learn to dress girly. I mean, you have a boyfriend! Don't you want to look pretty for him sometimes?>"

Alexis attempted to go for another tackle, but the sudden movement had the plushie pile collapsing on top of her. "I don't need to be pretty!" She yelled as she reached for Kawasaki from beneath the plushies.

Yakashima grabbed Alexis around the waist, attempting to pin her as the pile collapsed on them both. "<But don't you WANT to be? Besides, nobody's saying you need to be all the time. I mean, you're a tomboy. That's your thing. But every girl's gotta make herself pretty SOMETIMES, and remind the boys that she's still a girl.>"

"<Found somethiiiing~>" Kawasaki crowed, tugging a dress on a hangar out of the closet, followed by another one. "<This one even matches her eyes!>"

"<Okay! You found my secret! I like dresses and cute things... Mystery solved right... Right?>" Alexis said as she broke into a sweat, her heart racing as the blush remained on her cheeks. "Don't look past the dresses, don't look past the dresses." She thought to herself in a panic.

Kawasaki tossed the dresses to Yakashima, and dug deeper into the closet. "<What else is in here... Oh! What's this? Cosplay outfits?>" Kawasaki emerged with a wide grin, holding a magical girl outfit in one hand, and a school uniform in the other.

"A school uniform?!" Alexis blurted out as though that was the only surprise Kawasaki had pulled out of the closet. "That's not...! Those aren't...! You can't just...!" She said, unable to form a complete sentence. Her cheeks red, and her expression was that of shock, disbelief, embarrassment, and defeat all at once. With nothing else she could do, tears welled in her amber eyes and she buried her face into the plush to hide her embarrassment. "Mph mhmhmhph mhmh mhhn." She mphed with her face still in the plush.

The magical girls looked at each other, and Kawasaki leaned in to give Alexis a hug. "<Shh. We're only doing this to educate you, okay?>"

Alexis raised her head from the pile of plushies. "Okay, I admit it. I saw the magical girl outfit on display in a cosplay store's front window and though it was cute... So I bought it." She admitted, wishing that her secret had remained a secret. "But I don't know about the uniform."

Kawasaki giggled to herself as Yakashima looked pensive. "<Hmm. Maybe your boyfriend got it, but was too shy to tell you about it and hid it? Or maybe someone else snuck it into there?>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<Probably her boyfriend; all guys have a schoolgirl fetish. Proven fact, yo.>"

"<But that would mean he saw... Oh Kami if he saw the magical girl outfit...>" Alexis said as she thought about how he'd make her wear it, and probably pose as well. Not as bad as she initially thought, but still embarrassing.

Yakashima canted her head curiously. "<You mean you bought it, but don't want to wear it?>"

Behind Alexis, Kawasaki was digging through hammerspace for her makeup kit, elbows-deep in a purse only a few inches deep.

"<I may have tried it on once or twice when I was alone... And pose.>" Alexis confessed as though it were a crime.

Yakashima grinned. "<It's nothing to be ashamed of. Maybe we can get you a mask so you can cosplay sometime? Comiket is coming up soon, and I'm sure Kawa-chan will drag me to it again.>"

"<Oh, you love it really.>" Kawasaki responded, producing a large makeup kit from her small purse. "<Besides, I'm sure they'll have some yaoi doujin for that swimming anime you like so much...>"

Yakashima turned bright red, hiding her face in her hand. "<Sh-shut up!>"

"Yaoi?" Alexis said canting her right ear to the side. "<Besides if you're gonna make me wear that you're gonna have to make some kinda tail hole.>"

"<Yaoi is comics about boys loving boys. Usually pretty boys. Nice if you're into that sort of thing, but it's all a little unrealistic and icky to me.>" Explained Kawasaki, shrugging. "<And a tail-hole isn't so hard. I sew my own cosplays, so I could maybe alter it. Now, stand up and let's get this dress on you, K?>"

Yakashima sighed, peeking out between her fingers. "<Please don't tell anyone. Kawa-chan doesn't have any sense of what's proper material for discussion.>"

"<Fine, but neither of you mention this to anyone!>" Alexis said as she stood from the plushie pile. "<I'm serious! No one!>"

The girls nodded. "<I won't tell anyone. I'm not sure about Kawa-chan, but I certainly won't.>" Yakashima offered her hand, little finger extentded.

After a brief thought, Kawasaki extended her hand as well. "<I won't tell. Embarrassing uptighty-pants here is one thing, but people need to take you seriously. Especially since you're a Sergeant now.>"

Alexis took the girls little fingers in hers and shook. "<It's a promise, I tell no one about your comics, and you tell no one about my dresses and cosplay.>" After the shake she sighed, staring at the makeup. "<... Makeover?>" She said, sounding nervous and uncomfortable.

The girls nodded. "<Makeover.>"

Yakashima held up a finger. "<Makeover and tutorial! We'll pretty you up, and show you how to do it yourself when you want to. Devin-san said about you not really having any ability to have a normal growing-up experience, so this is sort of an intervention.>"

Kawasaki nodded again. "<Plus, your fashion sense is really bad sometimes. Practical is good, but you should dress to look good as well. Arella-sensei seems to have gotten you off to a good start, but we know how distractible she is sometimes, so we're backing her up.>"

"<Hey, I think my outfits are pretty cool!>" Alexis said defensively, crossing her arms.

Kawasaki rolled her eyes. "<Please. Those jackets with those combats? Totally clashes. And the pants totally aren't a flattering cut for you. You've got kinda curvy hips and you're nice and lean, so you should dress to show that.>"

"<I'm not that curvy, and why do I have to show it?>" Alexis said shyly, prodding her two pointer fingers together. "<I'm hardly the pretty type.>"

Kawasaki sighed. "<You've got good bone structure, good cheekbones, and you'll clean up nicely. Just trust me on that; it'll show more after some work with the makeup. That IS what it's for, after all. Dress first, or makeup?>"

"<I don't know... Dress?>" Alexis half-heartedly decided. She had already worn one before, so how bad could it be. "<Do you really think I could be pretty? Can we send a picture to Rekko?>" If she was going to be prettied up, she would at least want to send him a picture.

Yakashima grinned and nodded. "<Of course you can. Just let us get to work on you...>"

Alexis nodded, submitting to the unavoidable makeover that was her fate. "<Okay girls... I give up. Do with me what you will!>" She said in a manner that was far too dramatic for the circumstance, as somewhere in the plushie hoard a new Alexis plushie was preparing to be made.

---

A while later, the girls had managed to get Alexis into a dress, style her hair, and apply makeup. Yakashima was holding a mirror up as Kawasaki applied the finishing touches. "<There. Much prettier!>"

"Wow! <That's me?>" Alexis couldn't help but ask as she examined her reflection. Admittedly, she did look pretty good.

Kawasaki nodded. "<Indeed it is. See what a bit of makeup and some styling can do?>"

Yakashima grinned widely, holding up Alexis' phone. "<Now smile, we're gonna take some pictures for your boyfriend. Then maybe you can put the magical girl outfit on for him.>"

"<Let's not get too far ahead of ourselves. Though, I wonder what his reaction would be...>" Alexis wondered, the thought appealing to her more after her mental image had completed itself. "<We just might after all.>" She said as she put on a sweet smile for the camera.

Yakashima giggled, snapping a few pictures from various angles. "<Now, do a duck pout! It's traditional!>"

"<Like this?>" Alexis said as she pouted to the camera, the light sparkling off her eyes as she folded back her ears.

"<Yes!>" Yakashima snapped a few more pictures, before sending them off. "<Right, now time for the magical girl outfit.>"

"<Should we get a few with the uniform after? Seeing as I'm ninety percent sure he put it there.>" Alexis asked as she started removing the dress. "<Should I pose with the cannon?>"

"<Yes to both!>" Kawasaki spouted, poking through the closet again. "<You should get him to get you a yukata sometime. They're super-pretty.>"

"<You think he would?>" Alexis said, deciding that there was no point in continuing to pretend she didn't like such things. "<I've been wanting to get one for a while now.>"

"<He might take some persuading. Maybe suggest the summer festival next month?>" Yakashima's grin turned sharklike, quietly snapping a few shots of Alexis between outfits.

Kawasaki nodded. "<That's how I got one out of my parents for last year! Although I had to promise not to drip sauce on it, or trip over it, or anything...>"

"<Are you okay Ya-chan ? That grin's a little scary... Wait. Are you taking pictures! I'm not even dressed! You aren't sending those are you?!>" Alexis said, tossing aside the top to her magical girl outfit, and walking up on Yakashima to check, wearing only her light blue bra, panties, the (extremely frilly) miniskirt, frilled elbow length gloves, frilled knee socks, and (magical girl footwear).

Yakashima giggled, stepping away from her. "<Just thought your boyfriend might appreciate some in-between shots, for you to show him later...>"

"<In between shots, eh?>" Alexis pondered for a moment. "<Could you text Rekko and ask where he is?>' She asked as a prank he would appreciate formed in her mind.

Yakashima raised an eyebrow, tapping something out on the phone. "<Okay... Plotting to sneak up and magical girl him?>"

"<I was actually gonna ambush him in his room later, but for now pick a good in between shot and send it to him.>" Alexis said, wishing she could see his reaction without being there.

Yakashima giggled, sending a couple of shots off with the message.

---

"<Ah, that's Lexi...>" Rekko almost dropped his phone in surprise as he saw the pictures attached to the message; grabbing for it as it started to drop and holding it in close. "<My, I didn't know she had outfits like THAT...>" He flipped through the pictures, a blush growing and deepening in his face. "<By Kami... I should get her to dress up more often.>"

"HEY!" Came a shout from below.

Rekko looked out of the helicopter, grinning sheepishly at the Largoist dangling from the line. "Ah, sorry. I got distracted. Up, yes?"

---

Yakashima handed the phone back to Alexis as it pinged with a response. "<Here; I don't want to snoop on your couple-y stuff.>"

Alexis took the phone and spent a few minutes texting back and forth with Rekko before handing it back. "<Okay, back to the little fashion shoot?>" She ask asked as she re-acquired her top and put it on.

The girls nodded, Kawasaki helping settle the frills and bows on the costume behind Alexis. "<Ugh, whoever made this has obviously never tried to move in it. These will totally snag on each other when you're trying to dodge things, and this big bow in back will just flap around while flying...>"

Yakashima sighed softly. "<It's from some old anime, I think. If you're made of ink, you don't need to worry about things that snag or flap around.>"

"<Maybe I can have you two make me a functional. I'll pay ya for it and everything.>" Alexis offered her ears perking, as one of them accidentally made contact with her tail, letting out a small eep.

The girls paused, looking at each other. Kawasaki spoke up first. "Ano... <I do make cosplays myself, but magical stuff is kinda personal. You create it from your own magic, after all...>"

Yakashima nodded. "<Basically, we can make one that's better than this, but wouldn't look the same as it should be. And it won't offer the protection it should either.>"

"<That makes sense.>" Alexis said with a nod. "<Maybe something a little easier to move in?>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<We could just alter this one, actually... Most cosplay outfits have poor stitching, so it shouldn't be too hard to unpick it and... Whoops.>" She chuckled sheepishly as a frill came off in her hand. "<Hold still and I'll put this back on.>" She reached into her purse again, producing a small sewing kit and winking past Alexis to Yakashima.

Yakashima rolled her eyes. "<Just pin it for now; we don't really have time for your perfectionist approach.>"

"<You know, I'm actually having a lot of fun with this.>" Alexis admitted with a smile, her tail wagging at a steady pace. "<Thanks for coming over.>"

Yakashima grinned. "<You're welcome. We should hang out more often,> Y'ken?"

Kawasaki nodded. "Aye! <Especially if we can play dress-up some more. There we are, fixed.>"

"<Wanna do a group photo?>" Alexis asked, thinking that this must be what normal-ish teenagers do.

"<Sure!>" Yakashima grinned, squeezing next to Alexis and striking a magical girl pose with a sword she pulled from nowhere.

Kawasaki giggled, slipping in the other side, holding the phone up in a magical aura. "<Group selfie justice powers, activate~>"

Alexis pulled her cannon from weaponspace, placing the butt of the weapon on the ground as she leaned it onto her shoulder and struck a pose. The barrel of the cannon extending past the frame of the shotshot.

Kawasaki snapped a few pictures (a couple with the traditional duck pouts), before succumbing to a giggle fit.

Yakashima managed to avoid catching the giggles (barely), staying on her feet and catching the phone as it dropped. "<Selfie no jutsu.>"

Alexis leaned on her cannon and laughed openly. "<The selfie is strong with these ones.>" She joked with a grin. "<Man, I missed some fun growing up.>" She said as she wrapped her friends into a hug.

"<Well, we can just run you through it now.>" Yakashima responded. "<How about a sleepover? We can hang out, listen to music, talk about boys, and drink cheap alcohol.>"

"<Even though we're totally underage for it.>" Kawasaki grinned. "<Although I'm not so sure what the legal age IS.>"

"<Isn't it sixteen in Sealand?>" Alexis asked, placing her chin between her pointer finger and thumb as she thought. "<I never really thought about it... Anyway! A sleepover sounds awesome! Though, I don't really know how to go about it, and my body probably would break down alcohol faster than I could consume it.>"

"<Oh yeah, we're in another country. Do the Largoists even HAVE a legal drinking age?>" Kawasaki looked to Yakashima, head tilted.

Yakashima shrugged. "<Who knows. Anyway, Lucius-sensei has super-strong alcohol he uses to get drunk, so maybe see if there's some here?>"

Kawasaki grinned widely, ideas forming. "<Yeah! That'll work for sure! Maybe we can go bug him for some, if you promise not to let us at it. It's apparently deadly to normal people, or something...>"

"<Because it's methanol, Kawa-chan. The stuff you use for de-icing cars. Not for human consumption!>"

"<Mom said that if I was ever offered any of Lucius' brew to never accept it or she'd ground me until she dies.>" Alexis informed, the twenty three year old looking completely serious. "<I'll just not get drunk. Never been drunk before anyways.>"

"<Perfect reason to disobey her and get some anyway, then.>" Was Kawasaki's response, backed with a wide grin.

"<I'd rather not. I mean, it isn't even fit for human consumption.>" Protested Alexis, who figured it probably tasted like roadkill anyways. "<I could ask mom if she can make something to suppress the nanites, but that may take time for her to accomplish.>"

"<Well, this IS FGTL headquarters. There's got to be some strong booze somewhere. I mean, that THING out front had to be made somehow. Nobody sober could have made that.>" Yakashima protested.

Kawasaki opened her mouth to comment as well, but was drowned out by a CL4NG.

"<I guess I could ask Skorpion, but I'm not leaving dressed like this. I have an image to maintain after all.>" Alexis said as she grabbed her phone and called Skorpion.

The girls giggled, shushing each other.

---

"Ah, good morning, Alexis. What can I... Booze? Sure. Try the cant... Oh, you want stuff that'll get YOU drunk. I'll have a case hauled over to your room. Don't let the magical girls at it; there's far too much caffeine in it for them."

"Thanks Skorp!" Alexis said cheerfully as her tail wagged. "Do you think you could have someone bring something that the girls can drink?" She asked as she fiddled with a frill on her skirt.

"Sure, I'll add that onto the case. If you invite Arella, she drinks sparkling wine. Oh, and that magical girl outfit is positively adorable on you."

Alexis' checks turned a bright red. "How did you- you pervert!" She said in a fluster before hanging up.

Skorpion snickered as the line went dead.

---

"Frickkin spyin on me with his damn cameras. <Alcohol's on it's way, but first we're gonna get rid of any spycams we can find in here."

Kawasaki nodded, holding up a handful of bright light. "<Okay. Cover your eyes~>"

Yakashima ducked under the bed, clamping a plushie over her head. "<Watch the power on it this time!>"

Alexis dived for the nearest pile of plushie, the pile calaping over her. Moments later, a thumbs up protruded from the pile before going back in.

Kawasaki donned a pair of dark shades with her free hand, before releasing the spell in the other. There was a blinding flash, followed by sizzling and a number of small explosions. "<I think that got them. Deal with it~>"

Alexis poked her head from the pile. "<And they'll probably be back by tomorrow... But for now, we drink to celebrate! Or something like that.>" She crawled out of the pile and sat on the bed. "<Though I'm going to leave getting the drinks at the door for you two.>" She said, feeling oddly comfortable in the magical girl outfit.

The girls giggled, Yakashima crawling out from under the bed and dislodging a few shell casings from her outfit. "Haaaai, Lexi-chaan~" They chourused in unison, before moving to the door; Kawasaki stumbling and tripping over things before remembering to remove her shades. They struggled briefly with the pallet of drinks, before deciding on breaking it down and just moving the cases of b33r and wine coolers, vodka, fruit juice, and assorted fruity girly drinks inside.

Once they were done, the girls shut the door and slumped to the floor, breathing heavily. "<That... That was a LOT of booze. How drunk does he think we're going to... Put that down, Kawa-chan.>"

Kawasaki pouted, setting down the can of b33r she'd liberated from a case. "<I was only gonna have one...>"

"<You aren't kidding.>" Alexis said as she took a can from a case that said 'WARNING: Keep out of reach of magical girls' in English, French, Russian, Japanese, and Spanish. With a shrug she popped open the can. "<Well, um... Bottoms up?>"

The girls nodded, Yakashima opening a pair of bottles with a quick burst of magic before handing one to Kawasaki. "<Kampai!~>"

"<Kampai.>" Alexis said somewhat half heartedly before chugging the entire can, toughing through the taste. "<God, that was nasty!>" Alexis said as she placed the can back into a crate. "<How do people drink that?>"

Kawasaki chugged from her bottle, before coughing and spluttering. "<Excessively. Thelargoistsdrinkitbythecase...>"

Yakashima sipped her bottle at a more leisurely pace. "<Too much sugar, perhaps.>"

"<Sugar?>" Alexis said as she looked to the case, her ear twitching as she did. She reached for another can and opened it, drinking it at a more normal pace.

"<Sugar!>" Replied Kawasaki, giggling. "<Sugarsugarsugaar.>"

Yakashima rolled her eyes, drinking deeper from her bottle. "<Am I the only one here not on a sugar high?>"

"<Yes.>" Alexis said plainly as she finished her drink and grabbed another. "<They aren't that bad.>" She said as she started on her third drink.

Yakashima shrugged, tugging a sachet from one of Kawasaki's pockets, opening it and emptying it into her drink in one smooth motion. "<Time to change that, I guess...>" She took a deep swig of her drink, and her eyes unfocused before drifting outwards from each other. "<So this is what it's like to be Kawa-chan...>"

Kawasaki giggled, coming down a little from her initial high. "<Hey! Those are expensive, Yachan! At least ask!>"

"<What did she just do?>" Alexis asked pointing to Yakashima, pausing from any further drinking.

Kawasaki giggled. "<That stuff is concentrated energy drink. Someone at the Academy managed to get hold of a few crates, said it washed up on the beach or something. Epic sugarage~>"

Yakashima giggled, leaning back. "Wheeee~"

Alexis giggled. "<That sounds... Awesome.>" She said before continuing to drink from her can. "<I wonder how much of this I'm supposed to drink.>" She said as she examined the can.

Kawasaki looked from side to side, before offering a sachet to Alexis. "<Enjoy. Just... Don't tell Lucius-sensei, or your mama.>"

Yakashima sat up, shaking herself off as her eyes snapped back into focus (although one still wandered a little). "<That's probably dangerous. Got any more?>"

Alexis took the sachet from Kawasaki. "<I don't know if this is a good idea...>" She said as she poured it's contents into her can. She took a deep breath and drank a large portion of the can, her ears perking and the hairs of her tail standing on end.

Kawasaki giggled behind her hand, before draining her bottle. "<Bad ideas can be fun sometimes.>" She turned to Yakashima, looking serious for a moment. "<And no more of that for you. You're meant to be the smart, sensible one, not some sugar-addicted ditz. That's my job.> Y'ken?"

Yakasaki sighed softly, nodding. "I ken, lass. <I'll have some of that vodka, though. Potatoes are tasty to eat, so why not potato booze?>" She reached out, snagging one of the bottles and a plastic cup; filling a good amount of the cup before topping up with fruit juice.

"<I think I can see sound.>" Alexis said before downing the rest of her drink. "<You guys are awesome!>" She said as she grabbed a new can and half-stumbled to her bed, setting the can on the nightstand before rolling over onto the bed, grabbing an armful of plushies and tossing them into the air while giggling like a schoolgirl.

"<Of course we are! We're magical girls! That's practically our job!>" Kawasaki grinned, missing her attempt to open her bottle and slicing the top off instead. "<Whoops.>" She shrugged, grabbing a cup and filling it from the truncated bottle.

Yakashima giggled, raising her drink ceiling-wards. "<Booze and sugar go GREAT together. Fact.>"

"<Hurray for science!>" Alexis cheered as she took her can and chugged a large portion of it. "<Hey, where are you going to sleep? The plushies?>"

Yakashima scratched her chin thoughtfully. "<The floor should be fine. There's carpet, so it's not too bad. And we can use plushies as pillows.>"

Kawasaki grinned widely, already a fair way through her second drink. "<Or we can just share the bed. It IS pretty big...>"

Alexis examined her bed. "<Yeah! We can totally share the bed.>" She said with a wide grin, her tail wagging happily behind her. "<This is too much fun to be legal anywhere aside from Sealand!>"

"<It probably isn't. And it's probably only legal here because there's no need for a constitution when your nation is a few square feet of metal stuck out in the sea.>" Yakashima shrugged. "<And being bought by a paranoid madman didn't help it much, what with it now having a GDP and military larger than most countries.>" She took a long drink from her cup, giggling. "<Or, at least, that's what I said in my geography project last year.>" She stood up, mock-bowing before gesturing with her cup. "<In conclusion, Sealand is a rogue nation, and at once a danger and a stabilizing factor in the Pacific area. However, as an up-and-coming nation and a suspected nuclear power, it provides a sizable boost to the surrounding economies, and should be allowed to persist.>"

Kawasaki applauded politely. "<I just did mine on California, 'cause I went there on holiday a few years ago. You, Yakachan, are a nerd. Studying an' writing reports an' doing your homework.>"

Yakashima bowed to Kawasaki, giggling softly. "<Yeah, but my grades are way better than yours, and my 'nerdiness' has gotten us out of just as many scrapes as your ability to rap.>"

Alexis clapped at Yakashima's report. "<That's really good!>" She complemented before hearing about Kawasaki going to California. "<What's America like? I never really got to see it despite being born there.>"

"<Well, it's big. REALLY big. The buildings are big, the cars are big, and the people are big, too!>" Kawasaki grinned, waving her free hand excitedly. "<Deserts everywhere, beaches, and space to move in! I even saw real bikers! Leather and Harleys and beards and EVERYTHING. It was totally awesome! One even gave me a ride on his bike!>"

Yakashima giggled, leaning against the bed, her hand absently reaching down to pet Alexis' ears. "<You can't go around saying it's full of fat people.>"

"<Even if it was? And they weren't JUST fat. Just taller and bigger than people here. And so much beef everywhere. Steaks and burgers and beef sausages. Chocolate was terrible, though, which is probably why everyone had great teeth. And they have such small eyes, too!>" Kawasaki continued, bouncing excitedly. "<And and and and we even went out of Chali... Khali... Cal-i-forn-ia a bit, to see big holes in the ground, and go up a mountain.>" She hiccuped, taking another gulp of her drink.

Alexis' tail swayed contentedly as Yakashima pet her ears. "<You have really soft hands Ya-chan.>" She said with a content smile.

"<Thank you. I do try and stop them being worn out by smacking things with my sword.>" She paused the petting briefly, looking down at Alexis as if slightly surprised. "<Ah, sorry, I didn't realise... Should I stop?>"

"<No, it feels nice.>" Alexis said as she rested her chin on her arms and let out a happy sigh.

Yakashima shrugged, resuming the petting with a little more gusto. "<This is nice, actually. It's good to hang out when we're not being chased by a mob or anything.>"

Kawasaki nodded, flopping down on the bed on the other side of Alexis to join in the petting. "<Yeah. Plus, your room smells way better than hiding in a dumpster. It took DAYS to get the smell of it out of my hair.>" She flicked her head, sending her hair swishing dramatically behind her.

Alexis let out happy murmurs as the two magical girls pet her ears, her tail continuing to sway contently. She closed her eyes and smiled happily. "<It sure is.>"

"<Too quiet, though. Sleepovers should have music and singing!>" Kawasaki grinned, reaching into her purse and removing a small speaker dock. A few minutes of fiddling one-handed with her phone (the other hand still engaged with Alexis' ears), and the speakers started playing slightly tinny rap music.

Yakashima rolled her eyes. "<At least play something more normal. Or at least without so much foul language in it; we could do without another blue mist, especially with all the plushies to trip over.>"

Kawasaki sighed theatrically, switching the speakers to J-pop instead. "<Better? It's this, or the old rock music Lucius-sensei handed out for Media Studies.>"

Yakashima made a face. "<Ew, no. I could do without his ancient tastes in music. He's, like, centuries out of fashion.>"

"<I have a sound system you could plug into over by the TV.>" Alexis raised a hand and pointed to the television before returning it to under her chin, still completely content with the ear petting.

Kawasaki nodded, hopping off the bed and sliding across the floor in a trail of sparkles to fiddle with the wiring and controls. After a few seconds, the music was issuing from the sound system rather than the tiny speakers, and much louder than before. She bowed quickly, before flopping back down next to Alexis, shuffling up close as she resumed the petting.

"<Hooray for Largoist gadgets, I guess.>" Yakashima waved to the sound system, gaining an annoyed buzz as the Xbox camera tracked her hand. "<Although I'm not so sure about that box of evil there.>"

"<Shhh. It can hear you.>" Alexis advised with a grin. "<You can disconnect the kinect if you want to. I'm not that attached to it.>" She said as she glared at her Xbox. "<Those first person shooters are a lot easier to do in real life.>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<Cappin' fools is also way easier with magic. Call of Duty is really hard when you can't just rely on cuteness.>"

Yakashima snorted. "<Not that it stops you trying. I've heard you trying to sweet-talk boys into standing still so you can shoot them. And I've also heard you swearing like a Russian sailor with a hangover when they don't.>"

Kawasaki shrugged, smiling innocently. "<Better than your street racing games. Or those not-games you play. I mean, Pokemon raising? Seriously?>"

Yakashima blushed heavily, mumbling something under her breath.

"<Pokemon raising?>" Alexis asked, honestly wanting to know what it was like. "<I play first person shooters, and town builders.>"

Kawasaki grinned. "<You should totally tell me your usernames so we can play together. Yaka-chan likes huge western strategy games though, the nerd. The ones where it takes weeks to complete a game even against the computer.>"

Yakashima gave Kawasaki a Look, finishing off her cup of vodka-juice. "<I play Assassin's Creed as well, y'know. It's just like being a magical girl, but with conspiracies and stealth instead of justice and flashy magic. And stabbing people instead of more flashy magic... Okay, maybe it's not much like it at all, apart from the roof hopping...>"

"<Still fun. My usernames is Gunhappy Wolfgirl, because I thought it was funny.>" Alexis said as she stretched her arms. "<Are my ears soft? I've been using a conditioner that Arella picked out.>"

"<They totally are. You're so fluffy!>" Kawasaki ruffled the soft fur of the ear she was petting giggling softly. "<I wish I had ears like that. Catgirls have ALL the fun...>"

Yakashima snickered, pouring herself another drink. "<Last week, you were saying it was blondes. Then redheads.>"

Kawasaki stuck her tongue out, blowing a raspberry. "<But tails are totally awesome!>"

"<It's true, tails are awesome.>" Alexis confirmed by poking Yakashima in the back with her tail, giggling as she did.

Yakashima jumped slightly, the motion toppling plushies off the bed. "Ack! <They DO look fun, but Lucius-sensei keeps getting his trapped in doors, or stepped on. And Miyu-chan has no end of trouble when she goes kemonomimi. Fur everywhere.>"

"<I don't get trapped in doors, though I do shed a bit. In the end though, totally worth it.>" Alexis informed with a happy smile, her tail returning to it's content swaying.

---

"<Nono, you turn AFTER you swing your hip out. See?>" Kawasaki demonstrated the move in question.

Yakashima nodded. "<THEN you wiggle them. Should be easier with your tail.>"

"<I don't think I can do this.>" Alexis said as she watched Kawasaki, making an attempt at mimicking her motions.

"<Sure y'can. Just needs practice, is all.>" Kawasaki grinned. "<Plus, your feet are wrong. That's why you're not getting the rest right. Feet like this, see?>" She pointed down.

Alexis looked to Kawasaki's feet and awkwardly adjusted her own to match the example. "<Is this right?>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<Mmhm. Now, go through the motions, and you should be able to get them right~>"

Yakashima giggled softly. "<You're doing better than Lucius-sensei when we tried to teach him. He tripped over his tail and ended up flat on his face.>"

"You'd think he'd get used to having a tail." Alexis said as she attempted going through the J-pop dance routine.

Kawasaki shrugged. "<Maybe he was just clumsy beforehand anyway. He DOES seem to walk into things fairly often. Or fly into them. Though he claims his tail isn't natural anyway, and that Skorpion added it as a science experiment or something... No, no, like THIS. Ugh.>" She reached out, adjusting Alexis' arms before nudging her hips out further sideways

"<Okay, so...>" Alexis went through the motions again utilizing Kawasaki's corrections during the performance.

Kawasaki bounced excitedly, clapping. "<Yeah, that's it! You've got it now!>"

Alexis finished her performance and stage bowed to Kawasaki and Yakashima. "<Thank you! You're a wonderful audience!>" She said before she returned to standing normally with a wide grin.

Yakashima grinned, stepping back with Alexis' phone held up. "<Now do it again, with Kawa-chan. Big smiles, now~>"

"Haaaai~" Alexis cheered, the buzz from the alcohol making her feel bolder than usual. She stood beside Kawasaki and as the music started she danced in the routine that she had practiced along side Kawasaki.

Yakashima giggled, tracking the two of them with the camera. As the song finished, she tapped buttons to save and send. "<Go Lexi~>"

Alexis threw her hands in the air and cheered, before hugging Kawasaki and bouncing excitedly. "<How'd we do?>" She asked Yakashima, as she rocked back and forth in a giddy manner.

"<Good! Just right!>" Yakashima grinned, holding up the phone to show them the video.

Kawasaki returned the hug, bouncing with Alexis, her hair and uniform frills bouncing along with her. "<Yaaaay~>"

"<We look awesome!>" Alexis declared, her tail wagging excitedly. "<We should send it to Rekko! He should be heading back by now, I think...>" She said as she placed a pointer finger on her chin to contemplate.

Yakashima grinned wider. "<I already did~ No reply yet, but I'm sure he got it~ Gotta love the fast wi-fi in here.>"

Alexis giggled and hugged Yakashima. "<You guys are the best!>" She said as she lifted Yakashima and gave her a (tight, but not crushing) bear hug, before falling back into a pile of plushies with the magical girl in her grasp.

Yakashima squealed and giggled as she was pulled down, kicking her legs excitedly. "Wheee~ <Sleepovers are AWESOME.>"

Kawasaki giggled, pouncing onto the pair on the bed and hugging them both.

Kawasaki jumping onto the bed dislodged a Devin plushie with an angry expression and pink hair with light blue highlights, causing it to land on the group. Alexis took it and held it up. "<It looks like Devin, but pink!>" She said, giggling as she pictured the read Devin with pink and blue hair.

Kawasaki giggled. "<We should totally sneak up on him and dye his hair! That looked totally cute when he went like that in potions class.>"

Yakashima nodded. "<Totally.>"

"<Devin went around with pink hair?! You should have got a picture! I could'a teased him for the rest of my life!>" Alexis said, excited at the fact it actually happened. She cutely glomped Kawasaki, her tail wagging as she did. "<I wanna seeee!>"

Yakashima giggled as Kawasaki returned the hug. "<Whisp-san wouldn't let us take pictures. Much like Devin-san won't let us pet his ears. And Whisp-san won't either.>"

Kawasaki pouted. "<Yeah. They look so soft and fluffy, but noooo. She's keeping them allll to herself.>"

"<Dev's always been touchy about his ears. He even hissed at mom once when she tried.>" Alexis informed as she sifted through her plushies. "<I tried when we were little and he bit me.>"

"<How rude!>" Yakashima objected, pouting a little. "<Biting people is NEVER right. It took me YEARS to get that through to Kawa-chan!>"

Kawasaki growled at Yakashima, baring her teeth. "Grrrr!"

"<You can't be too mad at him; we've all got our mental scars from that lab.>" Alexis vaguely explained as she grabbed a normal Devin plushie and handed it to Kawasaki.

Kawasaki giggled, cuddling the plush and toying with it's ears and tail.

Yakashima rolled her eyes at her friend, chuckling. "<She just has a thing for petting catboys. That's kind of how she met her first 'boyfriend'. She just grabbed him, and scritched his ears until he stopped protesting and started purring instead. Then kept doing it whenever she saw him, until he started avoiding her.>" She rolled her eyes again. "<I have... Higher standards. At least, I want more in a guy than just a set of ears and a fuzzy tail. I prefer the strong, stoic types. Preferably competent and dashing, and a little bit bishounen...>" She sighed wistfully.

"<Sounds like my brother. Calm all the time, a bit brooding. All in all, he's a killjoy.>" Alexis said with a sigh as she pulled a Johnathan plushie from the same pile and tossed to to Yakashima.

Yakashima regarded it carefully. "Hmm... <He's certainly cute. Calm and brooding are definitely a yes, but I guess I'd have to teach him to have fun properly.>" A grin spread slowly over her face, and she turned to Alexis. "<Would you mind so much if I asked him out?>"

"<I certainly wouldn't care, but Victoria'd probably shoot'ch tha right aboooout, here.>" Alexis poked Yakashima between the eyes as she said 'here'. "<She's been goin after him since she was thirteen.>"

Yakashima pouted. "<Well, she should make a damn move, then! She can't just keep claim on him just because she likes him and has a gun, dammit!>" She grumbled. "<It's just not FAIR. Maybe I should fight her for him or something. Surely, the power of love will triumph?>"

"<She's tried, Johnathan just can't process that she's trying to date him, plus she was the daughter of the project's director back at the labs. So any chance of romance there was dead before it started.>" Alexis reasoned as she pulled a Victoria plushie from the pile. "<This is her by the way.>" She said as she tossed the plushie to Yakashima.

Yakashima caught the plushie, regarding it carefully. "<Then she should just accept it and move on, and let others have a turn with him. You can't just monopolize a guy you like just because you like him!>" She set the plushies down on the bed before leaping to her feet, posing dramatically with a magical aura. "<Love is a sacred thing! It should not be bound or kept at bay just because you can't accept reality!>" She changed poses, the Victoria plushie toppling over onto the Johnathan plushie. "<And you especially can't tie someone down with one-sided love, preventing them from finding love of their own! That just isn't JUSTICE!>"

"<Yeah!>" Kawasaki pumped her fist into the air. "<You tell 'em!>"

Alexis chuckled at the speech. "<I kinda want it to work out for her though. She was my only friend back at the labs.>"

Yakashima pouted, her aura fading again. "<Yeah, but she should either just kiss him or move over, damn her.>" She sighed. "<The code's kinda fuzzy there. Do I go with her being the Unlucky Childhood Friend, or the First Girl and thus destined to win his heart?>"

"<You can try if you like, he's pretty hard to confront on matters of the heart.>" Alexis informed as she pulled out a plushie of herself and placed it on her head.

Yakashima nodded. "<Boys tend to be rather dense. That's what mallets are for, however. If they won't listen to reason, we can beat sense into them instead.>"

"<Or bruises.>" Pointed out Kawasaki, opening another bottle. "<I tried that on Yusaba-san last year when he was trying to choose between two girls, and I accidentally beat him unconcsious.>"
"<Good luck landing a mallet on John. He's like me, but instead of ranged weapons, he uses melee ones... That guy... He ain't got a shred a mercy for someone he sees as an enemy or an attacker.>" Alexis said, sounding surprisingly serious for her. "<Hell, he near killed Rekko for sneaking up on him not too long ago.>"

Yakashima raised an eyebrow. "<Well, he's contractually obliged as a guy to NOT dodge the mallets, but that doesn't always work. I've seen Lucius-sensei parry them from Shiori-sensei after cracking jokes at her expense, but that seems to be a thing between them more than anything else...>"

Kawasaki raised a hand. "<It's a magical effect. Prince Skorpion-sama has been known to dodge and parry them sometimes, or just shrug off the effects through his armour...>"

"<If you want to ask him out, go for it. You're the one with my phone, and I have his number. Call him.>" Alexis sat up and tossed Yakashima a Yakashima plushie that she had pulled from the pile, grinning as she did. "<Just don't expect much from him.>"

Yakashima contemplated the phone briefly, before sending the number to herself over Bluetooth. "<I'll call him when I'm less tipsy, I think. Alcohol and boys mix entirely too well, and I want to make a good impression.>"

Kawasaki rolled her eyes in a fairly good impression of Yakashima. "<Always so sensible. Where's the fun in that? Give me your phone, and I'll call him~>"

"<What? No! No no no, that wouldn't be right!>" Yakashima stepped back, holding the phones and plushie protectively close to her chest.

Kawasaki gave a predatory grin, advancing on Yakashima slowly, backing her against the wall before reaching over to the phones.

"<Get the phone!>" Alexis yelled, cutting off Yakashima's escape route.

Kawasaki giggled, making a grab for the phones. Yakashima shifted to move them away from her, causing Kawasaki to inadvertently grab a double handful of Yakashima's chest. There was a brief pause, punctuated by Kawasaki giving a good squeeze. The pause was broken suddenly by Yakashima sweeping Kawasaki's legs from under her, dropping her to the plushie-covered floor with a thud before bashing her in the face with the Yakashima plush. "HENTAI BAKA!"

Alexis crept up behind the distracted Yakashima and quickly pulled the phone from her hand, holding it upwards triumphantly. "<Got it!>" She yelled with a wide grin, her tail wagging excitedly.

Yakashima whirled as the phone was snagged, reaching over to retrieve it from Alexis. "<H-hey! Give that back!>"

"<Give it back? It was mine to start with.>" Alexis said, grinning wide enough to show off a canine as she kept it held as high as she could.

Yakashima jumped to try and reach the phone, pouting as she failed to get high enough. "<No fair! You're, like, way taller than me!>"

"<Then I guess I win!>" Alexis said happily as she turned around and searched through her contacts for Johnathan, her tail wagging in front of Yakashima as she did.

Yakashima pouted and wibbled at Alexis' back, pressing close to reach around her to grab for the phone. "<Nooouuu!>"

"<Hey! You're pressing against my tail!>" Alexis protested, as she tried to push Yakashima off her with one hand while selecting Johnathan from her contacts.

Yakashima snickered. "<What, you don't like that? Maybe I should play with it until you give up?>" She reached down, poking at Alexis' tail.

Alexis jumped and let out a girly eep as she felt her tail get poked. "<S-stop it!>" She meekly ordered, trying harder to get Yakashima off her.

Yakashima grinned, dancing out the way of Alexis' shoving to run a hand along her tail.

Alexis' entire body tensed as a chill ran up her spine. Her ears perked, the hair on her tail, ears, and neck standing on end. "Nooo!" She shrieked, trying to get away from Yakashima. "<That's cheating!>"

"<So was letting Kawa-chan feel me up so you could steal the phone~>" Yakashima moved up, teasing her fingertips down Alexis' tail with one hand, the other petting an ear softly.

Alexis trembled as her tail was teased, her tail moving away from her fingers every time they made contact. "<S-stop.>" She said as an adorable blush came to her cheeks. She dropped to the floor, drawing the phone into her chest with both hands, hunching over it.

Yakashima giggled softly, releasing Alexis' tail as it dropped away from her. "<So. Compromise. I'll phone him when I'm not so tipsy, but you can text him for me?>"

Alexis looked up to Yakashima with embarrassed tears, still feeling her where Yakashima touched the fur on her tail. "Okay..." She accepted with a nod, placing the phone on the floor before flattening the fur on her tail with her hands.

Yakashima leaned down to hug Alexis, leaning into her a little. "<Sorry about the tail thing...>"

"<It's fine. My tail's just really sensitive.>" Alexis said as she returned the hug. "<But I think you should text him.>" She reached down to grab the phone, and presented it to Yakashima.

Yakashima nodded, taking the phone carefully and tapping out a message. After a few abortive attempts, she sat down and sighed. "<Maybe I should wait. English is kind of confusing to type in, and the letters keep swimming around...>"

Kawasaki reached over and grabbed the phone swiftly, starting to tap away. "Dear Johnathan. This is one of Alexis' friends borrowing her phone. I think you're cute and want to jump your tail."

"<HEY!>" Yakashima made a grab for the phone, with Kawasaki hopping neatly back out the way.

"<Oh, relax, I'm only kidding you. I'm just correcting your spelling, see?>" She flipped the phone around to show Yakashima, who relaxed.

"<Much better. Do you really need to put so many hearts in?>"

"<Yes. Yes I do.>" Kawasaki grinned, tapping 'send' before Yakashima could object further.

Moments later Alexis' phone dinged to signify a returned message. "<That was fast.>" Alexis commented as she tried to peak at the message. "<Who's your friend, why do they wish to court me, where do they intend to take me, and can they be trusted?>" She read out loud, facepalming a bit.

Yakashima giggled. "<Me, because he's cute, dinner and a movie, and of COURSE I can be trusted. I'm a magical girl, aren't I?>"

Alexis took the phone and typed out the message before hitting send. A couple minutes later the phone dinged again. "<I don't see how I could be classified as cute. I'm an animal with a half-human form who murders people without remorse, hesitation, or regret. With her being a magical girl, her beliefs would oppose my actions, therefore I see no point in her pursuing me.>" Alexis read out before sighing. "<He's always like this.>"

"<Didn't you say he refused to kill innocent people? So, he's not a total murderer. Besides, your mom's magical and a girl, and SHE'S dating Skorpion. And HE is way worse than your brother could ever be. Unethical, amoral, kills people for money, paranoid maniac, nuclear power, AND he runs sweatshops and ties people into long indentured labour contracts!>" Yakashima objected, before counting out the last bit on her fingers. "<Besides, Johnathan's ears are all fluffy. Just tell him to accept the damn date and I'll explain it to him.>"

"<Don't forget the people he works with!>" Chirped Kawasaki. "<Human rights violations alll over the place. About the only people he DOESN'T work with are North Korea.>"

"<Oh, everyone violates human rights these days. At least he doesn't go around invading poorer countries.>"

"<He invaded Somalia last month, actually.>"

Yakashima sighed. "<Aren't you supposed to be on THEIR side? And how do you KNOW this stuff?>"

Kawasaki grinned. "<I follow a bunch of blogs on Sealand. That, and the Somalia thing was in the papers.The UN demanded he make a military contribution to their work there, since Sealand has a bigger military than most countries. Then they censured him for hiring half the UN task force out from under the other countries' militaries.>"

Alexis looked to the two with a surprised expression. "<Well you're, uhh... Knowledgeable. >" She typed up a new message and sent it to Johnathan. A minute later the phone dinged again. "<Rekko told me to attempt courting Victoria, though with her away to Africa by order of Skorpion, I have been unable to do so. Should I still accept?>"

Yakashima hrrm-ed. "<Of course he should. But if he's getting advice elsewhere, it seems I need to discuss things with your boyfriend so we're all on the same page...>" She perked up as an idea hit her. "<Ah! I know! I'll interrogate him on his feelings on the date, and see how to go from there! That should satisfy the code of Love.>"

Alexis tapped out another message, and read out the reply. "<Very well. When, and where? Wow, he actually agreed. >"

"Mm... <Next Friday, at the Tokyo Tower Memorial Park, about 6PM?>"

Alexis typed out a message and read out the response. "<So be it. I will be present.>"

Yakashima sighed softly. "<So serious and formal...>"

"<I know. The guy's a total buzz kill.>" Alexis said with a smirk as she pocketed her phone. "<Don't know what people see in him.>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<Guys are much better when they're fun. Kinda like Lucius-sensei's grandson... Oh! Did you know he has a grandson? Lucius-sensei didn't, until he showed up at the Academy!>"

"<I'm surprised he had a son... Well, actually. I'm not surprised at all.>" Alexis decided after a brief internal debate.

Kawasaki giggled. "<Daughter, not son. It's his grandson that showed up. Immortal problems>, y'ken?"

"<Well, he is a bit of a tail chaser, but I'm sure there's a story behind it. Congrats for him.>" Alexis stood and patted her frills. "<What do you two wanna do now?>"

Kawasaki considered that briefly. "<I'm hungry. Pizza, maybe? Maybe order a couple delivered, if anyone will actually deliver here...>"

Yakashima sighed. "<The rest of us want to eat too, you know. Maybe a couple each, and that's if you're not very hungry.>"

"<I want two meatlover's, a Hawaiian, a pepperoni, and three supremes.>" Alexis said with a wide grin.

"<Pineapple on pizza. That's just an atrocity.>" Yakashima made a face. "<I will never understand pineapple.>"

Kawasaki grinned. "<Sounds good to me. Two meaty ones and a cheese pizza for me. All of the cheese~>"

"<You're my guests so I'll pay this time.>" Alexis said as she pulled out her phone and placed the order. "<They said it'll take a hour and a half.>"

Yakashima canted her head. "<They'll actually deliver here? I'm... I'm shocked.>"

Kawasaki grinned, holding up a menu. "<Says here they deliver to reception. We should warn Mary-san!>"

Alexis nodded and called Mary. "Hi Mary. I'm calling to let you know I just ordered some pizza. They said they'd be around in a hour and a half, and I didn't want any misunderstandings."

Mary's reply was brief. "Oh, sure thing. I'll sign for it and..." She was interrupted by an insistent beeping, and sighed. "And there's the oven. I'll give you a ring when it gets here~" She hung up to, presumably, retrieve cookies.

"Thank you!" Alexis cheered to the dial tone before putting the phone in her pocket. "<She said she'd call me when they get here!>" She looked to the pallet of b33r that she had half-drank through. "<I think I drank a bit too much.>"

"<No such thing!>" Kawasaki cheered, opening another bottle.

Yakashima grinned. "<She makes a fair point. You ARE a Largoist. And there's a reason they have their own brewery.>"

"<I'm pretty sure I might be dead if I didn't have nanites.>" Alexis cracked open another can and took a drink.

"<And isn't that why you're drinking so much?>" Yakashima pointed out, settling down on the bed again. "<Maybe it's time for a game or something...>"

Kawasaki nodded eagerly, producing a stack of board games from hammerspace. "<Good idea. I've got a few...>"

Yakashima sighed. "<One that WON'T take an hour just to set up and go over the rules, so none of that complicated nerdy stuff you love so much.>"

Kawasaki pouted, tucking most of the stack back into hammerspace.

"<I think I saw a game in a movie where you spin a bottle and if it lands on you you either have to do what the person who spun it says or answer a question... I think.>" Alexis took a moment to ponder. "<I think it was actually called 'spin the bottle'.>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<Sounds fun, and it WOULD save trying to remember rules...>"

Yakashima giggled softly, grabbing a bottle (one with an intact neck), and setting it down on the floor. "<So, who's first?>"

"<Oh, oh! Me!>" Alexis spun the bottle which came to a halt pointing at Kawasaki. "<Okay, okay. Truth or dare?>" She asked as her tail wagged excitedly.

"<Dare!>" Kawasaki grinned. "Come at me bro!"

Alexis thought for a moment . "<Okay, I dare you toooo... Do a handstand for the next three turns!>" She dared, due to lack of anything better crossing her mind.

Kawasaki nodded, getting up and promptly doing the handstand required of her, legs waving a little as the skirt of her magical girl outfit magically covered her modesty. "<Easy! Only problem is, I can't spin the bottle properly now...>"

"<Stand on one hand maybe? Or you could start after you spin.>" Alexis suggested with a shrug.

Kawasaki reached out carefully with one hand, wobbling slightly as she span the bottle. "<I... I think I got it...>"

The bottle spun slightly unevenly, settling on Alexis. Kawasaki grinned. "<Okay, Lexi-chan; Truth or dare?>"

Alexis looked at the bottle as though it had betrayed her before turning her attention to Kawasaki. "<Dare!>"

Kawasaki giggled, thinking briefly. "<Put the school uniform on!>"

"<You're on!>" Alexis got up and stripped before dressing herself in her school uniform and sitting back in her seat. She spun the bottle again, this time landing on Yakashima. "<Truth or dare, Ya-chan!>"

Yakashima looked around; Alexis was in a slightly too-small, middrift bearing sailor fuku, and Kawasaki was upside-down. "<Truth, I think.>"

"<Okay, mom told me about the glamour thing. So, is it true that you secretly enjoyed being a kitty-girl for the day?>" Alexis asked with a wide grin, seemingly unphased by the fact that the uniform was a bit too small.

Yakashima blushed as Kawasaki giggled. "<Th... That's not... Yes. Having a tail is kind of fun, actually.>"

Kawasaki pointed, her grin widening. "<HA! I knew it! You're not so aloof and sensible after WAH!>" She was cut off as she lost her balance, falling off her hand to crash to the floor with a loud *thud*, plushies toppling down from surfaces onto her.

Yakashima giggled softly. "<Serves you right.>" She reached out, spinning the bottle. It rattled around, winding up pointing at where Kawasaki's foot stuck out of the pile of plushies. "<Truth or dare, Kawa-chan!>"

Kawasaki sat up, rubbing her head. "<Owwie... Truth. Dares hurt.>"

Yakashima grinned. "<On the subject of kitty ears, do you JUST want to pet Devin-san's ears? Or is there more to it?>"

Kawasaki blushed fiercely. "<Okay, okay. He's cute, and I want to make him purr. Happy?>"

Alexis laughed. "<As Lucius would say> 'ladies cain't resist the kitty ears'."

Kawasaki nodded, still blushing. "<And the tail's not bad, either...>" She reached out, spinning the bottle once more.

"<What can I say? Tails are awesome!>" Alexis cheered as the bottle landed on Kawasaki, then was re-spun to land on her. "<Truth!>"

Kawasaki grinned, rolling out of her plushie pile. "<What was your first date with Rekko?>"

"<First date? That's easy! We went to a pier near a base. I wore my first dress which I later soaked in my own blood, he won my first set of plushies, we ate food from some stands, stole a mecha from the U.S. military, and he carried me to the infirmary after I gave him my first kiss..>" Alexis explained with a dreamy smile.

Kawasaki clapped. "<How romantic!>"

"<You stole a mecha.>" Yakashima said blankly. "<From the US military. And they haven't come looking for it?>"

"<I do what I want!>" Alexis yelled before spinning the bottle which stopped pointing at Yakashima. "<Truth or dare?>"

"Dare." Yakashima grinned at Alexis. "<At least this won't be as embarrassing...>"

Alexis grinned deviously before running to her closet and pulling out a small unmarked bottle. She shook it a bit and handed it to Yakashima. "<Open this!>"

Kawasaki watched Alexis run, eyes moving to watch the hem of her skirt with interest.

Yakashima eyed the bottle as it was presented to her. "<What's in it, and will it go everywhere if I do?>"

"<It's supposed to evaporate and smell kinda like grapes.>" Alexis explained. It wasn't a lie. It did evaporate and smell like grapes when she used it.

Yakashima sighed, holding the bottle away from her as she opened it, grunting a little with the effort as she twisted the cap open.

Alexis giggled as Yakashima was enshrouded in a purple fog which faded after three seconds to reveal nekomimi mahou shojo Yakashima.

Yakashima pouted, her tail swishing behind her in irritation. "<Let me guess. Devin-san smuggled it out of class for you?>"

"<Nope! Mom had a crate that said 'use in case of tardiness' so I asked her what it was, and after she told me I tried it to see what it's like to have larger breasts and no fluffy ears or tail, and by the end of the day my back hurt.>" Alexis explained, rubbing her back at the end.

Yakashima nodded. "<That's apparently a problem with them. That, and boys.>"

Kawasaki sniggered. "<A small chest is a rarity! A status symbol! It is...>"

"<Enough with your nerdy quotes!>" Yakashima turned to Kawasaki, growling as her ears and tail fluffed up.

Kawasaki pouted. "<Aw, you're no fun...>"

"<But she's so cute!>" Alexis pulled Yakashima into a hug and gently scritched behind her ears. "<Wait, who's turn was it?>"

Yakashima struggled briefly, before relaxing into the hug and scritches, purring.

"<I think it was Yachan's, but she seems to be a little busy right now...>" Kawasaki giggled.

"<Everyone should have fluffy ears and soft tails.>" Alexis said as she continued to scritch behind Yakashima's ears.

Kawasaki nodded. "<You got another of those bottles, then?>"

Yakashima mewed softly, leaning into Alexis and purring louder.

"<Closet, in a small bag. Save one for Rekko though, I only have two left.>" Alexis said as she used her other hand to assist with ear-scritching.

Kawasaki nodded, skipping off to snag a bottle and returning with kitty ears and a tail. "<You're right, this IS fun.>"

Alexis nodded. "<I know, right!>" She released Yakashima with a grin. "<Your turn Ya-chan!>"

Yakashima nyowed, still lost in the scritches.

"Whoops." Alexis kept scritching for a few seconds before stopping to let Yakashima continue the game.

Yakashima looked around, blinking. "<Nya-huh? What? What'd I miss?>"

"<You're a kitty. And now so is Kawa-chan. Also it's your turn.>" Alexis explained.

Yakashima nodded, reaching out and spinning the bottle. After a few tries, including it ending up facing herself twice, it eventually settled on Kawasaki. "Mya... <Um. Truth or dare, Kawa-chan?>"

Kawasaki squee-ed a little. "<Dare!>"

Yakashima giggled softly, "<Alright. I dare you toooo... To kiss Lexi-chan!>"

Kawasaki's ears flicked one way, then the other. "<Lexi-chan, are you okay with that?>"

Alexis blushed a bit before her ears perked with an idea. "<Well she didn't say where, so I guess a peck on the cheek couldn't hurt too much...>" She said meekly.

Kawasaki giggled, shifting to crawl over to Alexis. As she got close, she took Alexis' chin gently in her hand and leaned in to kiss her softly on the lips, purring lightly.

Alexis' eyes widened in surprise as their lips made contact, her hands moving in confusion as her ears perked alertly and a deep blush spread across her cheeks. There were brief muffled objections before she hesitantly accepted what was happening.

Kawasaki held the kiss briefly, before moving back, a smirk crossing her face. "<There. Happy now, Yachan?>"

Yakashima nodded, letting out a quiet squee. "<Very cute. And I'm sure Rekko will like seeing it too.>"

"<Shut up.>" Alexis mumbled before the entirety of what Yakashima said sunk in. "<Wait! Rekko? How? He can't!>" She said as she began to panic.

Yakashima reached out, patting Alexis' ears softly. "<Don't worry, he knows it's only a dare. I took pictures and sent them. See? He even sent a smiley back!>" She held up Alexis' phone, showing the reply and the smiley in question. "<Besides, guys love seeing girls kiss other girls.>"

Kawasaki nodded. "<They totally do.>"

"<How did you get my phone... I left it in the other outfit didn't I?>" Alexis asked as she took it and examined Rekko's response before getting up and putting it in her nightstand. She let out a sigh before returning to her spot. "<Your turn Kawa-chan.>"

Kawasaki nodded, spinning the bottle once again, to point at Alexis. "<Truth or dare, Lexi~>" She grinned wickedly, wiping her mouth.

Alexis looked to Kawasaki nervously. "<Da-errr, truth.>" She chose, deciding that that was the safer route.

Kawasaki giggled. "<So, what was your...>"

She was interrupted by Alexis' phone ringing. "<Oooh, pizza!>"

"<I got it!>" Alexis said hastily as she ran to her phone and answered it. "Hello?"

"Ohayo! This is Mary; your pizza is here! It's a LOT of pizza, though, so you might need more than one of you..."

"Okay! We'll be right down! See ya!" Alexis said before hanging up. "<The pizza's here! Let's go!>" She cheered as she stood up and ran to the door excitedly, forgetting completely about the outfit she was wearing.

The magical girls cheered as well, leaping up to follow her out the door.

Alexis cheerfully led the way to the lobby, gaining distracted and confused stares from all whom they passed, though no one dared take a picture. "Hi Mary!" She greeted with a big smile and an alcohol induced blush.

Mary waved back, giggling and indicating the large pile of pizzas. "Here you are!"

"Thank you!" Alexis cheered as she took hold of a large portion of the pizzas.

The magical girls divided the rest of the pizzas between them, grinning almost ear-to-ear.

"Enjoy them, girls. Sleepover going well?" Mary inquired, smirking.

Alexis nodded energetically. "Mmhmm, They put me in a dress, did my makeup, we got drunk, Ya-chan asked out Johnathan, and we played spin the bottle!"

Mary nodded, giggling. "That's always fun! I take it the uniform was a dare, then?" She waved down to Alexis' outfit.

"What uniform?" Alexis asked as she looked down to see that she was still wearing the school uniform. There was a moment of total silence before she looked back up to Mary with an embarrassed expression. "I'm still wearing it... And people saw me too..." She realized as a deep blush came to her cheeks. "D-d-don't look!" She stuttered, knowing it was too late.

Mary giggled. "Oh, don't worry. We've seen stranger, in here. This IS the FGTL, after all."

"But I don't want people thinkin' I'm girly'n stuff." Alexis said shyly, suddenly bothered by the miniskirt.

Mary nodded. "Well, we'll just blame it on the booze and the magical girls. They're VERY persuasive, after all. <Don't touch that!>" She turned, swatting Kawasaki's hand as she reached for a weapon tucked into an umbrella stand by the door.

"Okay. I'm gonna take them back before they set something on fire... Again." Alexis said before turning to the girls. "<Let's go before the pizzas get cold!> Thanks Mary."

The girls nodded, Kawasaki giving the weapon a lingering look as they headed off.

After the girls entered her room Alexis kicked the door closed behind her and set the pizzas on the first available flat surface. "<That was so embarrassing.>"

Yakashima patted Alexis' ears softly. "<Sleepovers are so embarrassing.>"

Alexis turned around and glomped Yakashima into a pile of plush before stitching her ears. "<Kitties make everything better~>" She said as her mood did a one-eighty.

Yakashima squeaked as she was tackled, the pizzas in her arms going flying to be fielded by Kawasaki. "Ack!"

Alexis watched as Kawasaki managed to land every box on her stack. "<Nice catch.>" She commented while continuing to scritch Yakashima's ears.

Yakashima squirmed, mewing softly as she succumbed to the scritches again.

Kawasaki grinned and giggled, setting the pizzas down. "<Magic for t3h win.>"

"<Set down the boxes so I can give you scritches as well.>" Alexis said with a smile.

Kawasaki held up her hands, grinning. "<Yay scritches!>"

"<Well get over here.>" Alexis said, motioning with her free hand.

Kawasaki skipped over, nuzzling at the hand. "Myaa!"

Alexis ran her fingers through Kawasaki's hair before scritching behind her ears.

Kawasaki purred loudly, leaning into Alexis, her ears twitching. "Nyaa~"

Alexis continued to scritch behind the magical girls' ears for a couple minutes before releasing them. "<Okay, pizza then sleep?>"

Kawasaki nodded, skipping back over to the pizzas and separating out the piles.

Yakashima shook herself back to her senses, and accepted a stack of pizzas; settling down cross-legged on the floor to chew through them.

Alexis consumed the pizzas she had ordered for herself at an alarming rate, letting out low growls as she did.

Kawasaki chowed down with gusto, soon ending up surrounded by pizza boxes scattered with crumbs and bits of topping. Once finished, she flopped backwards onto the floor, holding her stomach. "<So much fooood~>"

Yakashima nodded, finishing off her last slice. "Mya... <Yeah. That's like a whole day's food for you.>"

Alexis finished her last box and let out a satisfied sigh. "<Oh, yeah. I could sleep after that.>"

Kawasaki grumbled to herself as she crawled onto the bed, curling up there and purring.

"<Yeah. Totally a food coma.>" Yakashima stretched, yawning widely.

Alexis crawled into bed wit Kawasaki and yawned. "<Ya-chan could you get the light?>" She asked as she snuggled up to Kawasaki and scritched her ears.

Kawasaki purred, nuzzling Alexis as her magical girl outfit vanished in a brief flash of light, to be replaced with a pair of pajamas.

Yakashima giggled softly as she turned out the lights, settling onto the bed herself and adopting her sleepwear of a long T-shirt and underwear.

Alexis remained in her schoolgirl outfit due to being too lazy to change. She shifted so that she could snuggle and provide idle scritches for both of them as she slowly drifted to sleep.

---

Rekko slipped into Alexis' room, stretching. "<Hey, Lexi. Girls. Sorry I'm late; got caught up with... Oh.>" He trailed off as he spotted the quietly-snoring tangle of limbs, tails, and hair on the bed, smiling softly. "<Cute.>" He leaned over, kissing Alexis softly, before clearing the chair next to the bed and settling into it, petting Alexis as she slept.

Alexis's eyes opened and she looked to Rekko. "No boys allowed." She said tiredly before giggling. "Did you like the pictures?"

Rekko nodded, grinning at her. "<Very much. You look good as a magical girl. I much prefer the schoolgirl look, though. Very sexy.>"

The tired Alexis took a moment to translate what Rekko said in her head. "Maybe I'll wear it for you when it's just the two of us sometime."

Rekko grinned, leaning down to kiss her again. "<I'll hold you to that. You get some sleep; I'll be here when you wake up.>" He yawned. "<Sorry I was late. People needed rescuing. You know what Largoists are like sometimes.>"

Alexis paused again to translate Rekko's words. "Mmmhmm." She murmered before snuggling up to the magical girls again and falling asleep.

Rekko smiled, petting her ears as she dozed off. "<Sleep well, Puppy.>"

---

Summary:
Alexis is bad at first person shooters, and is also a rage gamer.
A call from Mary saves the controller.
Alexis goes down to collect her visitors, who have already set something on fire.
Uncontained magical girls!
Sparklies start fires, apparently.
Random Johnathan encounter. Yakashima is distracted...

Magical girls and nukes don't mix. Magical girls and plushies? Totally do.
Don't give Kawasaki ranged weapons.
Alexis gives the girls a sales pitch on Largoism.
Vampires are EVERYWHERE.
Kawasaki reads fansites about the FGTL.
SkorpxTiff is apparently squee-worthy. And Alexis was spying on them!
The plushies have reached critical mass.

The girls go through Alexis' closet.
Magical girl outfit! Dresses! Schoolgirl outfit? Even Lexi's never seen that. Blame Rekko.
Mild blackmail; the girls won't tell anyone about the outfits if Alexis lets them give her a makeover.
MAKEOVER TIME.
Gossiping and clothing changes. Pictures are taken for Rekko.
Fashion critique. Mostly of the magical girl outfit.
Cosplay designers SO don't know what magical girling is like.
SELFIE NO JUTSU

Drinking time!
Skorp has cameras everywhere.
At least, until Kawa-chan shuts them down.
Booze is delivered.
B33r! Vodka! Wine coolers! Fruit juice! Alcopops!
The FGTL has no legal drinking age; it never came up.
No b33r for magical girls.
SUGAR!

Especially after a shot of energy drink concentrate. Someone deals it at the Academy.
A brief taste of what it's like to be Kawasaki.
Yakashima quotes her essay on Sealand.
Kawasaki tells Alexis about California. (It's big. REALLY big. The buildings are big, the cars are big, and the people are big, too!)

Music! Games talk! Dancing!
The magical girls teach Alexis a complicated Jpop dance routine, and film it for Rekko.
Talking about boys.
The Code of Love is confusing, but Yakashima asks Johnathan out anyway. Because bishie.

Pizza is ordered. LOTS of pizza.
Until it arrives? Spin the bottle truth or dare!
Backstory, explanation of previous posts, and some dares.
Alexis ends up in the schoolgirl outfit, and the magical girls get kittified.
Yakashima's very vulnerable to the subsequent scritches.
And Alexis is very good at them.

PIZZA TIME
Alexis forgets to change. Mary points this out when they arrive. Blushy Alexis.
OM NOM NOM
Food coma snuggles on the bed.
Magical girl nightwear transformations.

Rekko arrives late.
Brief conversation with a sleepy Alexis.
No boys!
He settles on a chair to nap nearby.
http://overkillgi.deviantart.com/art/Al ... illgi&qo=1
"I heard you like bullets. So i put some bullets, in my bullets, so I can shoot'cha... While I shoot'cha!"
<<

CantoAnathema

User avatar

Posts: 24

Joined: Thu Mar 13, 2014 5:04 pm

Post Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:29 pm

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

For The Sake of the Children

Location: The bar
Time: Some evening after Women
Character(s): Shinyai, Howell, Eloise, Saeko, Yuki
Author(s): Notsonoble, Saeriva, CantoAnathema, Sareth

Shinyai was cleaning the bar; she'd just messed up the drink Saeko left her instructions to practice tonight. Either that or she made it right and just hated whatever the hell tequila was. She looked up at the noise of the door opening. Through the door entered two figures Shinyai was not familiar with. A man who was shortish and thin and looked very much out of place followed closely behind a girl not much bigger than Saeko’s daughter. The man looked surprised to see Shinyai behind the bar and, after a quick glance around the bar hesitantly asked; “Is Saeko here? We were supposed to meet her today…”

Shinyai looked at the two and considered the girl for a moment. Must be here for Yuki. "I apologize, she should be back shortly. I actually expected her back a few minutes ago. Can I do anything for you while you wait?" She reached for a glass.

The man sighed.

“Why does everyone here think I’m an alcoholic? It’s not like I’d walk into a bar at this time of day if Lola didn’t have a play-date…” His hand drifted to the girl at his side, absently rubbing the top of her head like a kitten. He glanced at the girl, then back up at the bar. “But, I mean, if you’re offering… I could take another whiskey while we wait.”

"Glen-farr-cutlass," the small girl added, with a rather maimed pronunciation, as she climbed up into one of the bar stools. "Juunisai. Neat." Her Japanese and English were also oddly accented though less grievously abused but she seemed satisfied with her words. She considered Shinyai briefly, then looked over at the array of bottles.

The man, for his part, was considerably more than satisfied with the small girl's performance and gave her a quick peck on the forehead, laughing with pride. "Bon travile," he praised her, sliding into the adjacent seat, "bravo. Yes, Glenfarclas neat."

Shinyai smiled and poured the whiskey. Then reached under the bar to the mini fridge holding Yuki's juice stash. "Neat as well, little one?"

The girl's eyes flicked back to Shinyai, locking onto her with a particular intensity. After a moment's thought, she said,"Gib-son Fine-is."

"I'm sorry," the man chuckled sheepishly, "she doesn't understand English." He leaned heavily into the bar, stooping low enough to look into the small girl's face. He smiled when she caught his gaze, then tossed his eyes to the rows of bottles lined behind the bar. "Que faites-vous?"

"Je construis le palais." The girl confided with a low, girlish whisper and her eyes smiled. She glanced back at Shinyai and turned to give a small bow from her seat, lowering her arms to her side.

“She’s just playing a memory game,” he explained, shifting to press his forehead against the girl’s. He was still smiling when he straightened, but this time there were wrinkles at the corners of his eyes. “It was something her father used to do with her. Ah, but…” the man shook his head a bit and when he faced Shinyai again, the wrinkles around his eyes were gone. “Sorry, my name is Howell and this is Eloise… if you didn’t already know. May I ask who you are?”

"Shinyai, and no... I haven't pried into the mistress's life much." I probably should, and soon.

"You, uh..." his voice trailed, as his eyebrows knit together. "Excuse me, did you say mistress?"

"She's my boss, my landlady, and has already kept me alive once. What else should I call her?" Shinyai decided not to add companion to the sentence aloud.

“I, no, I mean that kind of makes sense.” Howell stammered, “it’s just not a common thing to call someone, is all.”

"She seemed a little bothered by it as well. So I've stopped using it with her, but since I don't know how you know her." Shinyai shrugged. "I just went back on what I would have used at home."

Howell shrugged as well. "You're not a very trusting bunch around here, are you?" He sighed. "It's always 'who are you and why should I care?' Saeko asked me more or less the same thing the last time I was here." He leaned back as far as he could on the bar stool, eyes lolling up to the ceiling. "That said, I can't say I know her very well," he admitted, "I only met her the one time. As for how I know her? Well I'm a friend of Shi--" Howell's eyes quickly darted to the small girl at his side, the back to Shinyai, "A-Aneko's late younger brother." He censored himself.

Shinyai nodded "I can't say trust is an easy thing around here. I wasn't so much asking who you were as simply stating I didn't know." She cleaned another glass, and poured some of Yuki's juice in it to place in front of Eloise. "I don't really know her all that well either." She added with a mile-away stare.

Howell hummed quietly to himself, nodding in contemplation of the girl behind the bar and her distant eyes. “You mentioned home,” he said slowly, as though trying not to startle her, “Where’s that? If it’s alright for me to ask.”

"I don't know, really. I fell though a portal while fighting demons on a different plane from my world. The stars here are too different for me to even guess where home is anymore." She came out of the stare, and smiled a 'I'm gonna tough it out' smile. "Here I am though, where the gods want me, with people who need me, and are willing to help me in a strange land."

He met her smile with one of his own. “Good for you," he said, "with everything that’s going on, it’s nice to see a little positivity around here.”

"This is a bar. There is no positivity allowed." Saeko declared, as she walked through the door, trailed by Yuki. "Hello Howell." She gave the man a nod. "Hello Eloise." She placed a matronly kiss on the child's forehead, who squirmed a little, her lips disappearing. She then paused at the bar, leaning across it towards Shinyai. "Hello, Shinyai." She gave a mysterious smile.

"Eloise-chan!" Yuki squealed. She eagerly ran over to the older girl, gave a fast bow, then began jabbering away animatedly in Japanese.

Howell leaned over the bar. "Shinyai... I think she might be firing you."

Saeko blew a raspberry. "Don't be mean to my employees, Howell. I'm still breaking this one in." She turned and spoke softly to Yuki, and the little girl immediately began tugging Eloise towards the stairs. Eying the adults with the wariness of the young, Eloise followed and the girls departed; Yuki still chatting with quick, excited bursts.

"I see all is well then. Should I give you two some space as well?" Shinyai said in a light manner.

Saeko slid across the top of the bar, her cheek rubbing against Shinyai's. Her lips near the fox girl's ears, she whispered loud enough to be heard by all but the two girls climbing the stairs, "Trying to get rid of me so early?"

"Ooookay," Howell stretched the word as far as structurally reasonable as he pushed back from the bar, "Maybe I'm the one who should be giving some space."

"Oh be still." Shinyai waved a hand at Howell, then she looked at Saeko, "No one's getting rid of anybody... until later." She smiled, and reached a hand around to pinch a cheek below the counter.

Seako squeaked with wide-eyed surprise.Howell, on the other hand, pinched his nose between his fingers in a practiced, long-worn motion. He sighed.

"If I'd known there'd be an awkwardness competition," he said, mostly to himself, "I'd have invited Tschim."

"It seems I may get a history lesson. Please tell." Shinyai said as she moved from Saeko and reached for a pair of clean glasses and poured Saeko and herself drinks.

“Tell? Howell repeated, punctuated by a quizzical quirk of an eyebrow. ”About what? Tschim?” He laughed at his own thought, and sipped at his drink. “Tschim is… well, Tschim is who she is. She’s good at putting me in awkward situations. She practically lives off it. Although she is less…” he paused long enough to flick his eyes over the two cuddle bunnies on the bar, “physical about it than you two. Tschim prefers to embarrass me verbally.” He tossed back a decidedly more significant swig, “She’s hardly history though. She’s just back at the ryoukan, keeping an eye on Lenore for me.”

"Ah." Shinyai seemed a little disappointed that she wasn't finding some secret of Saeko's, but shrugged it off. "So, How long is your visit today?"

“Depends on how long Lola wants to stay.” He answered. “She likes Yuki, and I think it’s good for her to make friends here. I just wish things weren’t so tense. I get so worried when I have to bring her into to the city.”

Shinyai considered asking, but decided that would be prying. Instead she looked to Saeko to carry the conversation for a bit.

"The city is not the best place for children these days. It is true." Saeko agreed as she slid back off the bar and took the proffered drink. A sip, a clear evaluation, and then a nod of approval towards Shinyai followed.

"Or anyone else not capable of defending themselves, for that matter." Shinyai responded with a frustrated sigh.

“Was it always this bad?” Howell asked. “I’ve only been here once before and…” his face grew redder as his words grew softer. “W-well, I wasn’t exactly sober most of that time, so I don’t really have a frame of reference.”

"No, I was here a few years before anything like what happened to that convoy happened. I guess the demon invasion was that bad, probably worse, if the Worldwound at home is anything to go by. That was over before I ended up here though."

"It wasn't as bad, then. We were free to be who we were back then. Now?" Saeko shrugged. "I worry for Yuki's future."

“I’d be worried for her immediate safety.” Howell admitted, “I heard about what happened. Terrorists blowing up half the city, airstrikes? It’s only a matter of time before Megatokyo turns into the Gaza Strip.”

"And which of us would be the Palestinians, then? Under siege in our own land."

Howell shrugged, sipping thoughtfully. “That depends on where you start telling the story, I guess.”

For a long while, Howell said nothing more, only stared intently into the air beyond his glass and his hand, nursing the alcohol. “As far as I understand it,” he finally continued, the drink at last finding its place back on the counter, “those nullification fields only exist because of what happened five years ago. I understand why the meta population opposes them, but honestly, I can’t say I blame the humans. If I’d lost friends and family and my home to unfathomable monsters I couldn’t hope to fight against, I’d do something stupid and pretty drastic to protect the things I care about, too.”

"'Stupid' is the key word there." Saeko grumbled. "It creates resentment and provokes the very sort of thing we've just seen. Their reactionary response only makes it worse."

"I suppose," he shrugged, "but what do you really expect them to do? Being scared is part of the human condition; fight or flight, you know? Asking a human to act rationally when they're scared is like asking a cheetah not to run. It's what they do, it's their dual-edged, evolutionary advantage. Besides," he continued, fingers drumming distantly against the bar, "what's really stupid is how anyone could think that fighting humanity's fear with actual fighting is going do anything but make the situation worse."

"Monsters do what monsters do," Saeko shrugged.

"There are monsters on both sides of this. The question now is do we let the monsters rule the people's choices?" Shinyai interjected.

"A valid question. But let me flip that around on you." Saeko's voice was gentle, but it was clear she was also quite serious. "Do we let the people rule the monster's choices?"

"When the people try to rule someone else's choice, they stop being people and start being monsters." Shinyai said, then lowered her tone, and let her natural features manifest in challenge. "Being a monster is a choice, not a heritage."

"Make no mistake, beautiful little fox girl. There is a choice, certainly. But it is not yours. Those generators they have thrown up around town were aimed at you. At Onna. At Tsubasa. We, all of us here, are monsters to them." Saeko laughed, an abrupt crystal sound of delight, with none of her usual darkness in it. "And why not? It's not a bad thing, being a monster. It's who we are, so why be upset by it? Maybe I chose to be a monster, maybe it chose me, but either way, I am content with what I am. I won't ever ask them to 'choose' to view me as anything else. All I ask is for my place in the world." Saeko leaned over the counter towards Shinyai with a smile. "Is that so much to ask?"

Shinyai thought about it for a moment. "Monsters have their place. So no its not too much. I have no wish to be a monster, not like the ones I've fought. I've slain creatures who make you look like an innocent princess. I only want the fools to see the difference."

Saeko sighed, looking weary. "You can't make a fool see what she refuses to see." The magical girl slumped onto one of the stools. "I tried living by their rules. I tried to be what they wanted me to be. Just another human. I endured five years of starving myself, of only taking the bare minimum I needed just to avoid dying. I ruffled no feathers, even my own! And they installed an ANFG by the shrine anyway. And the pain of it. Like they had kicked a dying begger in a stomach swollen by starvation." Saeko shook her head. "No more."

"This mess before us will sort the fools from the blind fools. Then you'll have your place." Shinyai said quietly. "What about you Howell, what do you want?"

Up until this moment, Howell had been sitting as still and unassuming as possible, eyes intently following the debate as it passed between the bartenders, and so was entirely unprepared when suddenly thrust back into the conversation. "M-me?" he piped and started so suddenly he nearly spilled his whiskey. "I, ah... Is that even still on topic?"

Shinyai reached under the table for the bottle and a rag. "The topic's drifted. So what do you want? Besides another." She wiped up the whiskey and refilled his glass.

"That's kind of a broad question, isn't it? There are a lot of things I want." Howell tipped the glass appreciably, before taking a less than insignificant swig. "Whiskey, sure, but I wouldn't mind being taller, either. I'd like my best friend to stop being dead. But if you're asking about my take on all that..." Howell tossed his head back towards the door and, metaphorically, what lay beyond.

He was quiet, for a while, after his words faded into long and introspective excursions into his glass.

"What I want," he eventually said, in a voice that was hardly above a whisper, "is for Yuki and Eloise to continue being friends. I want them to grow up safely and inherit a world where they can make their own choices, live their own lives and be happy. They're too young to make the kind of decisions that would ensure that, but I'm not."

His glass meet the table, and his eyes meet Saeko's.

"We aren't. Things are bad," he shrugged in an almost helpless roll, eyes dropping to the hands he clasped together around the freshly filled glass, "and I can't say I know for sure what the best thing to do in this situation is. But, I know enough to avoid doing anything that would leave the world a more resentful or violent place for them."

"And if inaction means this is the world they inherit? Where they aren't given those choices?" Saeko whispered.

"Inaction is just as bad as doing the wrong thing. I'm just not sure what the right thing is at this moment." Shinyai slumped down in a stool herself. "I've beat the snot out of more of these street punks than I can count. I'd rather take the initiative, but I don't know who to strike at, and striking blindly just makes it worse."

"You're right, of course." Saeko nodded.

"Is she?" Howell asked, pausing just enough to glance from woman to woman."Are you even listening to yourselves? So maybe doing nothing isn't the answer, it's not what I was implying anyway, but how do you go from 'nothing' directly to 'domestic terrorism'? You can't seriously think you're just going to just beat your problems out of people, are you two insane?"

"Who said anything about terrorism? I have no intention of running around screaming 'fear me and my wrath!' and killing whatever I can, where ever I can. I have no qualms with the landlady that kicked me out of my last apartment because someone threatened her family and livelihood just because I was there. I want to quietly dispose of the bastard that threatened her, because this 'police force' you people have for a city guard is a joke." Shinyai responded like she was talking to someone whos brains were oatmeal. "I want to strike at the cowardly stupid morons who already are terrorists."

“So it’s not that you want to be a terrorist, you just want to use violence to pursue your social changes. Shinyai,” Howell sighed the name, his head shaking slowly, “I don’t know how they define terrorism where you’re from, but around here, that is terrorism. Besides, you’ve ignored the more pertinent question here, so let me ask it again: Do you honestly believe that if you break enough arms or 'quietly dispose', as you say, of enough people that you’re going to convince the humans that they’re wrong about you?”

Cocking her head to the side, Saeko leaned back away from the bar, watching the exchange with an interest that might not have been academic. For her part, Shinyai got in Howell's face, and spoke with a flat low tone.

"I've been here for four years, calling your so called police, doing all the non-violent things your society suggests. In that time it has only gotten worse. I'm done with peaceful demonstrations, or only breaking arms of people that attack me first. This sword under the counter isn't for breaking arms. It was made so I can lop off heads. Perhaps I should get back to it."

“You still haven’t answered me.” The man said gently and locked eyes with her as he sipped his drink.

Shinyai finished hers, "The people that would accept us, already have, the people that don't, never will. It's time to remove the ones that don't. The question isn't who's minds we need to change. It's who's we need to remove from the thought process. Last week wasn't a terrorist action. It was the start of a war."

“Then you’ve already lost.” Howell tipped back the remainder of his glass as well. “You seem to think the situation here is unique but it isn’t. The metahumans are only the latest to go through it and history has already proven that your method doesn’t work. This isn't a problem that can be affected in days or years, it takes lifetimes and if you’re too short-sighted to see that, then all you can ever hope to do is make things worse for the next generation.”

"Who said anything about unique? Racial idiots existed where I'm from as well. Bigotry doesn't stop with ears, a tail, or odd facial features. Try being a halfling slave sometime. I don't plan to fix it myself, or over a few years. War has already come, I didn't want it any more than you, but if we don't fight it, then we really have lost. Will the war fix it? No, only an idiot thinks that, but that doesn't mean we don't fight it when the time has come. Let the mages, councilmen, and elders of the next generation talk it out once the people who won't listen are too broken to hunt children in the streets for kicks."

"Besides," Saeko cut in, smiling in approval towards Shinyai, "If history is replete with examples of what happens when people like us fight back, it's also replete with people who didn't. Yes, Warsaw didn't work out too well for the Jews in the ghetto, but the alternative wasn't exactly a success plan either. And," she rushed on to say before giving Howell a fair chance to respond, "before you say this isn't comparable, let me remind you one group of us already has been shoved into a ghetto. We call it 'The Hollows'. I don't plan to wait around for more. Or for the next step."

“Allow me to remind you of something,” Howell said slowly, the words forced through gritted teeth. “Bit of an important detail, but unlike Jewish people, vampires actually do eat children. And the metahumans? They’ve already caused one apocalypse, just in case you forgot. The difference you are desperately trying to hand wave, is that humanity has very real reasons to be afraid of you.”

With a deep breath, he continued, “And this isn’t an internment camp. This is a prison sentence. The metahumans ripped a hole into hell, the city was leveled, thousands of innocent people died. Did you really think humanity was just going to walk it off? Act like nothing ever happened? And for heaven's sake, don’t bring the vampires into this. The Hollows have been around for ages so don’t start acting like you care all of a sudden.”

"Upstairs," Saeko hissed," is a little girl. A little girl who hadn't even been born yet when that hole was ripped. A girl who, as she grows older, will suffer headaches anytime she wanders around this city. A girl who risks being beaten or even murdered because she's not 'normal'. My little girl, Howell. So get off your human loving high horse. She is guilty of no crime, but she's locked in your happy little prison. If you think that is reasonable of the humans to do then you are no better than they are. They have every right to be afraid of me, and I won't let them forget it. But no one hurts my daughter. Do you understand me? No one."

"Well," Howell laughed, in a way that was sharp and bitter and not much like a laugh at all, “since you bring it up, please, let's talk about kids. Because I've got two myself and one of them is upstairs right now, same as you. My 'human high horse' is only in this city because I love her and because people like you can't see past your own nose far enough to realize what you're doing to human kids like her. Or to your own, from the sound of it."

"Fine! Explain it! Explain how letting things continue like this is best for our little girls."

An uncomfortable silence settled over the bar as the three refused to look at one another but stared instead at various parts of the bar. The simple fact was that there was no answer and they knew it. For Saeko, she had to fight. Forget the vampires, clansmen, and magical girls -- when you threatened her daughter, Saeko would always fight. She had too much of her mother in her to do anything else. Howell could not fight; not with violence, at least. His was an old soul and had seen far, far too many young people fight and die to see that route an option anymore. Next time, it would be Eloise he would lose and that he couldn't do.

For all their arguing, they understood the root of their argument was the same: they loved too much and, in doing so, suffered and were spent. Finally, Saeko heaved a sigh and raised her eyes to Howell's face.

"I'm sorry, Howell. That was unfair of me. This whole conversation has been unfair." She slumped atop the bar, letting her eyes turn down as she pressed her forehead into her forearms. "I'm tired. I'm tired, and I'm frustrated. I've done what I felt necessary, but I didn't know how much..." She stopped, and gave a sound that wasn't a sob, but certainly something filled with emotion. "Arella has moved back out, as I knew she would but... And there has been no one. No shoulder to sigh into, no arms to lie in. Just..."

This time it was a sob, a quiet one that barely shook her shoulders. But it was one none the less.

"Look," Howell sighed, "I... I guess, it might be insulting to say that I know what you're going through... But, you know, I can relate. I've been there, trying to raise a child alone, surrounded by things you can't possibly protect them from forever. I know what it's like to sit up all night, knowing that all you can really hope to do is mitigate the long term damage."

Saeko gave off a sound that was half sob, half laugh. "Yeah. I suppose you would know, at that." Red rimmed eyed turned back up to Howell. "I need something, Howell. I need to do something. But I don't know what else there is."

“I know,” he nodded, heavy and more somber now than at any point either woman had heard him speak before, then turned to Saeko with eyes near as damp as hers. “I know, and that’s why I’m begging you to stop.”

Saeko gave a nod. "Alright," she whispered. "I'll try. As best I can."

Shinyai watched the two of them as the tension melted into exhaustion, she'd become the outsider again. She was a childless warrior watching two parents fear for their children. So many times she'd offered a promise they'd be fine, and walked out into the fight. Tonight was different though. There was no fight to walk out into, the enemy was unknown. It wasn't even just on the 'right side of the law' she'd fought that before. Worse, one of those parents was the one she expected to point her at the enemy.

Shinyai wondered why she'd never been invited to sleep in the main bedroom. Now she figured she never would. Maybe she'd been to brash, or not brash enough, whatever. Shinyai'd just been, how did that TV show put it? Friend zoned? Yeah, she'd just been "friend zoned". <I>Oh listen to you moping, they're crying out of fear for their children, and you're moping over no one in your bedroll. This world's made you soft.</I> She shook herself. Then stood, placed a hand on Saeko's shoulder, and spoke "Hey, speaking of the kids upstairs. Why don't the two of you clean up and spend some time with them. It won't do their friendship any good if they think their parents hate each other."

"I knew I hired you as more than just really awesome eye candy," Saeko replied. She sniffled and blew her nose on a napkin, then turned and hugged the fox-girl. "I'll do that."

"<Is everything alright?>" The quiet voice of Eloise interrupted.

The adult trio turned to see the girl standing on the last step, with Yuki one step up and behind her. Eloise held Yuki's hand in a gesture part leading and part shielding, her slight height advantage providing cover to the younger girl. As she looked over the bar occupants - her eyes lingering on Howell and Saeko, then narrowing carefully over the Shinyai in Saeko's embrace - she added, "<It felt unpleasant down here.>"

"<For a bit, it was. It's over now, though. Just two old people worrying about their children.>" Saeko smiled.

Eloise nodded slightly, acknowledging the answer, and her fingers moved to gently squeeze Yuki's in a reassuring gesture. However, the eyes of the young girl maintained their slow, evaluating trail from adult to adult.

"Est quelque chose de mal?" Howell asked under the girl's judgmental gaze. He glanced from the stairs to the women beside him, and back again. "Je ne comprends pas," he shrugged.

Eloise's neutral face slipped into a slight frown and she stepped down into the bar, bringing Yuki along carefully. "A shver harts redt a sach," she said slowly, cautiously.

Howell sighed, deep enough that his entire torso heaved. "Az me redt zikh arop fun hartsen, vert ginger."

Sliding off the stool, he crossed to the stairs and crouched down to look Eloise in the eyes. He smiled, briefly, and took the girl’s hand that wasn’t currently full of Yuki’s. “Meir bakumen hoykh,” he said slowly, enunciating carefully. “Zayt moykhl. ” Then, which a quick glance over his shoulder, added in a whisper almost too quiet for the women at the bar to hear; “Mishopcha mishegoss.

After a moment consideration, Eloise lowered her head slightly in acknowledgement. Her lips slit open for a moment and a sigh of tension loosing escaped, before the three - Yuki, Eloise, and Howell - walked hand-in-hand back to the bar.

"They're still children," Saeko said softly, watching the two girls approach. "Let's let them stay that way a little longer. More scotch?"


---Summary---
- Shinyai tends the bar and practices making teh alcohols. Howell and Eloise show up for a play date. That is, Yuki and Eloise playing together.
- Some mild banter and introductions, then Saeko and Yuki arrive. The little ones go to play while the adults flirt and talk politics.
- Talking politics is a terrible idea. Saeko is pro-terrorism, Shinyai is against people messing with her, Howell is pro-not-terrorism.
- Long story short, they want to make things better. What's the best way of doing that? Hell if I know!
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Arella

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Post Sun Nov 30, 2014 8:11 am

Re: Just Another Day In Prohibition Megatokyo

OOC Post

It's time to bring this thread to a close, as I've heard that 20 pages can occasionally break the forums, and that would be bad. We will be continuing the story , in yet another soft-canon thread.

Summary of the Thread:
(To be written when I'm less tired, lol.)
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