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BZPRPG - Ko-Wahi

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IC:

"Not us. You." Krayn corrected simply, slipping the Toa of Air onto the Gukko's back. "Not enough room. Bird's never liked me, anyway. Destiny's going to be over capacity, Daring. You need to hang on, and tell her where to go. As soon as Kale's on, get to Ihu."

 

"She will be," He added to Arankhe, dropping to a half crouch to offer Cyrix a hand up. A hit to the calf really, really wasn't going to help things. There were wounded. Worst were getting out on Destiny, but this Toa wasn't going to have an easy time walking. There was that Matoran, whom Krayn couldn't leave behind. And a whole village of enemies that didn't want to let them leave alive. The evacuation plan was never great, but it was going downhill fast. His expression stayed calm, but he mind was racing. "Get Kale on the bird."

 

"Mister Cyrix, that bird seats two. It's going to carry three. Us fortunate souls get to leave on foot." Matter of fact, but decidedly more chipper than the situation called for. "I need your friend to grab that Matoran. And then we all need to leave. Right now. I'll handle the rearguard, but it won't matter how long I can do that if we're not moving."

 

IC:

 

For the first time since the fight began, Eisen was truly displeased and the soft rumble from his chest vocalized it.

 

Not from the pain; it was uncomfortable, and forced him forward a little more than he had planned. Nor from fear, as he knew he could hurl the Toa away well before he could follow up with a truly lethal strike. But because it was sloppy. He had leaned too much on his new Kanohi, he couldn't move quite as swiftly as when he had possessed his Calix. Mata Nui's champion had managed to exploit that, even if only for a moment. The cut on his shoulder, courtesy of another Maru, was bleeding anew. Small indignities.

 

Perhaps it was time to inflict one.

 

A minute application of his power made the blade concealed in his gauntlet swing loose, low and adjacent to the Maru's face. Close enough he thought to draw a shallow line across the Maru's face in time with the pivot that brought the two front-to-front again, his sword drawn back into a ready position. His Kanohi was prepared, but he would not rely on it; with no distractions remaining, he could focus on the Maru himself and take his measure.

 

"What are you accomplishing here, Wanderer?"


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On this eve, the thirtieth anniversary of that first colony, many are left to wonder; is the world fast approaching a breaking point?

 

 

  Breaking Point: An OTC Mecha RPG

 

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IC:

 

Cyrix managed to fit most of the curses he knew into the short gasp of pain as Krayn pulled him to his feet. He leaned on Krayn;s arm to take the pressure off his leg, and back, which hurt tolerably less. Getting out of here wasn't gonna be fun, but it needed to happen. "SKORM," he shouted, using some of his elemental power to force air into his lungs, "PICK UP AND ON US!"

 

The other Kalta managed to hear Cyrix over the fray. While he had enormous respect for the Maru, this was probably a time to let legends do their thing. Besides, his team needed him; Unity and Duty and all that. That's two to Destiny's possible one. Concentrating his well, he felt out for the sturdy ba-matoran, lifting him up and pulling him to Skorm as fast as he dared; he caught the considerably smaller, if heavy, matoran in one massive arm.

 

"I'm Skorm. If you want to leave, I'd suggest hanging on and watching my back."

 

A skakdi leveled a spear at him, and Skorm leveled the gravity as it was thrown and it tumbled to the ground.

 

 

 

The transformed Fe-Skakdi felt the blast before she saw it, and her dive was altered into a spin in an entirely different direction from where she had initially aimed. She slammed into the stone wall of the room and tumbled onto the ground. She was angry. This was her moment to shine, and this Maru was almost literally raining on her parade. Fyura pushed herself over and her long legs continued the motion, bringing her upright. As she rose, she tore one of her throwing axes off her belt and flicked it at the Ga-Toa. With a flick like tossing a dart she put the same violence behind it as a toa might with an overhand swing. But the axe wasn't the plan, just something to keep the Maru busy for a second. With her other hand, she pulled the volo lutu launcher she kept, now tiny in her swollen and stretched form. She aimed at the wall that Leah had weakened, at a support, and fired.

 

 

 

Zueya shrugged. "I studied weather as part of my training, snowstorms are one of the worst storms you'll get outside of big tropical storms. But his one isn't coming from the right direction, even accounting for the weird weather on Mata Nui."

 

Tromping ahead, Casanuva looked back. "Any chance its a thundersnow? You and Kalyss could certainly have some fun with that."

 

The Vo-Toa shook her head. "Afraid not, at least not now."

 

Kalyss had held up, waiting for them to reach her. "It's not gonna be long before we reach the valley, and then its a short hike to the outer wall." The outer wall would be a challenge for the entire group to get through, or over. "Vakua, I have some idea for our approach, but I haven't seen the inside. Zueya and I could pool our knowledge from my scouting and her infiltration. Care to set up a mindlink?" She glanced at Dakte, remembering the Dasakan reactions to unprompted telepathic contact. "If you could join in, we would appreciate it." 


BZPRPG Profiles


TOA KALTA: Casanuva Vakua Kalyss Skorm Zueya Aelied Cyrix


OTHERS: Denrika Fyura Raiyo Aokora Maeloc Askha Somei Sydelia


"They belong in a museum!"


"So do you!"

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IC:

 

Azza was really losing it.  He couldn't feel his extremities as he crawled across the frozen warehouse floor.  The cold air stung his exposed face, and the Kanoka Disks on his back were starting to bruise him.  Still, he crawled on. Azza crawled towards renewed hope of escape.  Living in a Koro overrun with evil was worse than anyone could have imagined.  The townsfolk frequently mugged each other over perceived slights.  Homes were broken into every night, including his own, and more than once at that. Sometimes, the innocent matoran's homes were torched and set ablaze.  Once, Azza saw a matoran's home sealed shut with ice and stone.  He never learned if the inhabitants ever made it out.  Azza had to seal up his own mind just the same so he could survive.  He showed no emotion, nor ever looked up from the ground after Ko-Koro had fallen.  But these toa gave him hope again.

 

Shots began zooming into the warehouse.  The Legacy's reinforcements were arriving.  Azza hoped the Maru would be okay.  The Toa were firing back at them, and Azza was caught in the middle.  He stayed low and kept crawling forward, until something grabbed him, raising him off the ground.

 

"I'm Skorm. If you want to leave, I'd suggest hanging on and watching my back."

 

Azza blinked, stunned.  A Toa had scooped him up!  His heart raced and he felt alive again, if only for a second, before he froze in fear as a spear hurled towards them.  But it randomly just stopped and fell to the ground like a dead tree's branch.  Azza looked over and saw the heavy Toa's arm outreached.  "Gravity.. Like me.." Somehow, that reassured Azza. "Watch his back.." Azza's thoughts were starting to form complete sentences again.  He pulled a Kanoka Disk from his back and held it up like a small shield, guarding his face and the back of the Toa's head.  It wasn't much, but maybe it'd make the difference between survival and death, for the both of them now.  As the Toa of Gravity began to move again, Azza caught the fight between Stannis and Eisen in the distance that was still unfolding.  It seemed a stalemate.  Azza's thoughts grew resolute.  "If I get the chance, if I get the right angle, one disk in the right spot is all it'd take to knock that monster's mask into the air."  That had to wait.  Azza needed to focus; the Toa needed him.  

Edited by Azibo

Movin' to Montana soon.  Gonna be a dental floss tycoon.

Casually looking to buy some Kanohi.  PM me if you've got some neat ones please.

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IC:

 

 

Vakua nodded to Kalyss.

 

:A mindlink is being set up now. I will try to add the Dasaka Dakte in as well:

 

Vakua closed his eyes as he activated his Suletu, concentrating on his allows minds and thoughts. Reading them was comparatively easy to he was doing now. Slowly, he began relaying each and every thought from one person to another, becoming himself  a bridge between the two consciousnesses. Thoughts, ideas and even memories could be transferred across if they came up in someones mind while the link was intact. But then, so could emotion and pain. It was a useful, albeit dangerous skill.

 

:It is done:.


Quiz by TheQuizzery.com

 

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You are strong and kinda smart, but not too much

Which Barraki are you?

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IC (Ageru Dakte)

 

"Of course," the Menti assented.

 

Dakte had not been party to a mindlink before; to a Dasaka, one constantly linked to the mental plane and able to Ideatalk as easily as speak, it seemed a redundant concept. But he could understand the need for it, and the basic principle of how it would operate.

 

When he felt Vakua's psionic presence tugging at the edge of his consciousness, he denied his instinctive reaction (to push back against and cut off the mental intrusion) and instead relaxed the barriers of his mind, allowing the link to form. To his surprise, it was a much more intimate connection than he had anticipated. He could sense the thoughts, emotions, even sensations (like the bitter cold of Ko-Wahi) experienced by the Kalta. Presumably, they could do the same with his.

 

Quickly, he reasserted some of his mental barriers. Not enough to destroy the link, but enough for him to adequately control what passed through it. He still did not entirely trust these Toa.

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IC:

 

Kalyss breathed a sigh of relief; it had felt like she had been holding it in for weeks. There was something comforting about Vakua's mindlink. A sense of belonging, of mutual purpose. The knowledge, the assurance that whatever might happen, she was not alone. When Dakte was folded in, she felt him, but in a limited fashion. Like a cold stone. Still, better than nothing. She started talking, her words mostly lost in the blizzard, but her thoughts were still transferred to the rest of the team.

 

:I did some scouting of the area, but didn't get too close. Ko-Koro is a fortress, and as far as I can tell, it only has one conventional way in.:

 

Zueya nodded. :Aelied and I were in Ko-Wahi for a while. It's not just a wall, there are listening devices and artillery emplacements on the wall. And... and the Legacy will not hesitate in their use.: Bleeding into the mindlink were her memories tending to the refugee caravan survivors, whether she wanted to or not.

 

Casanuva grimaced. :Zueya, didn't you say in Ga-Koro that you and Aelied went undercover inside the Koro? How'd you get in?:

 

The Vo-Toa sent an affirmative thought. :We adopted aliases, and just walked in. There are Legacy guards posted at the front gate.: Images of the gate and wall spread over the mindlink, followed by her memories of the inside of Ko-Koro. :We were setting up a safehouse inside, but Korero Maru found us first. That was after we found the wanted sign for Vakua's Suletu.:

 

One by one the Kalta looked back at Vakua. Casanuva broke the pause. :Easy. We make like we are bounty hunters that have captured Vakua. We get inside, find Soraph and Skorm, and get out.:

 

:And when we don't bring Vakua to whatever overlord is in charge of the place?:

 

Casanuva audibly snorted. :Please, we're the Kalta, with two Menti warriors.: Casanuva's mental image of all five of the Kalta undergoing a daring escape, he himself sweeping Soraph off her feet. The imagined sequence was cut short by Kalyss pelting him with a snowball.'

 

:As attractive as that idea is, I don't think it will work.: Zueya continued unabated. :What if the guards try to kill Vakua then and there?:

 

The Fa-Toa sobered immediately. :Right. Sorry. Too much of a risk. You said there were listening devices. Vakua could cover us, and we could scale the wall under cover of the snowstorm.:

 

Kalyss, leading the way, came to a halt. :I don't like the idea of pretending to bring our teammate on a silver platter a follower of Makuta. Plus, both Casanuva and I are described in that wanted sign; its dangerous. But, let's keep that plan in our back pocket. It would be easier with Skorm, but we can scale the wall to get in without drawing trouble. I think our biggest problem is finding both of them once we're inside.: Her thoughts were unaccompanied by words; she barely had to think it; they had arrived at the valley leading to Ko-Koro.

 

Casanuva suddenly breathed in, epiphany ringing through the mindlink. :The necklace! I gave Soraph a necklace in Ga-Koro, I might be able to home in on it like a compass. But given all the ferromagnetic material within those walls, I'd need to be pretty close to find it.:

 

:That's what I like to hear. I'm going to assume you planned that.:

 

:Let's go with that, fearless leader.:

 

Looking to her team, Kalyss took a slow breath, and watched the snowstorm spirit away the crystallized exhalation. Enemy territory, unknown enemy forces, and the unknown factors of Soraph and Skorm. Her first real operation. :Are we ready?:

 

*     *     *

 

"Yep," Skorm said, "Just like you. Same as that Dark Toa, too. But he's a problem for another day." His exertions were going to catch up with him again, he could feel the burning in his lungs start again. He started making his way to Krayn and Cyrix, using his saber and reach to make sure a path was clear, though it was mostly only the threat of force.


BZPRPG Profiles


TOA KALTA: Casanuva Vakua Kalyss Skorm Zueya Aelied Cyrix


OTHERS: Denrika Fyura Raiyo Aokora Maeloc Askha Somei Sydelia


"They belong in a museum!"


"So do you!"

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A minute application of his power made the blade concealed in his gauntlet swing loose, low and adjacent to the Maru's face. Close enough he thought to draw a shallow line across the Maru's face in time with the pivot that brought the two front-to-front again, his sword drawn back into a ready position. His Kanohi was prepared, but he would not rely on it; with no distractions remaining, he could focus on the Maru himself and take his measure.

 

"What are you accomplishing here, Wanderer?"

 

IC: Stannis Maru

 

Stannis did not linger or celebrate his glancing blow to Eisen's armor and instead remained in a constant state of motion, refusing to surrender his momentum. He sprang from his ducked position, leaning forward and away from Eisen's rear guard just as his foe flourished his sword and turned to face Stannis anew, but this time Eisen had caught him with his cleverness and tools. 

 

Eisen's freshly revealed gauntlet-blade careened undetected to Stannis' flesh, and while it only narrowly missed his face it did catch his left shoulder, in part because Stannis fell straight into its path. Stannis had made first contact, but it was Eisen, to the Maru's dismay, who drew first blood. From a small gash between the armor plates on his scapula blood seeped down his upper arm. The wound was minor but not inconsequential and it forced Stannis to seek an extra pace of distance from Eisen to recover. His recovery was forced, however, and with some effort he pulled himself together and whirled sharply on the balls of his feet to face Eisen again. He twirled his halberd twice in front of him to ward off attacks he expected but that did not come before settling himself into a defensive stance and brandishing his weapon pointedly at Eisen.

 

The stance was familiar, reminiscent to the previous ones Stannis used in the duel, and warned of adaptability Eisen would have to be wary about. A drop of blood fell to the ice cold floor and froze on contact with a wet crackling sound and Stannis, for the first time, visibly winced—from pain or from the sound? Eisen could not be sure—but those damnably grey eyes still drilled into the dark toa with the same haunting blankness as before. 

 

"Isn't it clear, Eisen?" he said as he slowly moved to flank Eisen on his shield side. "I'm getting to know you."

Edited by EmperorWhenua

 BZPRPG Profiles / BZPRPG Rules and Index / Pictures Topic / NM Q&A 

"... Even you, EmperorWhenua, you stupid beautiful contrarian, you." —Tyler Durden

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Kale Ironshaper- Ko-koro- Warehouse

 

IC: A growl emanated from the silvery Toa, accompanied by the metallic clank of his metal feet hitting the frozen stones of the street. He had no idea what Eisen had hit him with. Whatever force that had sent him flying was invisible and could be projected some distance. Whatever it had been had dazed Kale significantly and probably would have done much worse if Arankhe hadn't been around to stop him from slamming into a wall. He'd have to make her a piece of armor or something as thanks once they got out of here.

 

And it was time to get out of here. The cultist's reinforcements were getting close and no matter how much leaving the Maru behind like this burned, they couldn't stay here any longer. Getting even with Eisen would have to wait for the rematch.

 

"I can walk just fine." He said as he stood up and out of Arankhe's grasp. "Was just a bit rattled is all, not used to actually getting hit. Once of the Matoran will need the spot more than me"

 

A glance around told him exactly how bad it was. The group they had come in with was...more or less okay. #### it Skyra. But apparently all the non-evil-Makuta-worshiping residents had decided to swarm out of the woodwork for this. There wasn't a whole lot they could do about that now. Trying to organize this mess would just ruin what little remained of their plan and probably get them killed. Plus, Krayn had events in motion already. No point in trying to redirect things.

 

An irate thought brought his band of protosteel flying from where it had been cast during his impromptu aerial performance. It flitted through the air like living mercury and glinted with a dangerous light that echoed it's weilder's thoughts. If any grogginess remained it wasn't apparent to any of those who watched as Kale turned to regard the oncoming hostiles.

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"I serve the weak. I serve the helpless. I am their sword and their shield. If you want to strike at them, you must go through me, and I am not so easily moved."

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IC:

 

​Azza felt the adrenaline pumping through his veins once again.  This brave Toa was going to save him!  Enemies were pouring in with each passing second, though.  Azza shuddered as the thought of what might happen to his heroes after his departure invaded his mind.  "We're almost there," he reminded himself.  "A minute more and I'll be leaving this place behind.  I'll be a free Matoran once more."  ZIP!  A glowing sphere barely missed Azza and Skorm.  Azza looked back and saw a dark Matoran loading another round from the entrance to the warehouse.  He fired again, straight towards the Toa's skull.  Azza held his disk up and intercepted the shot. A few seconds was all it took for the Kanoka to dissolve.  Azza tossed away the scrap and drew another disk.  "Two left.." Azza worried.  "I'll make them count."  Other evil warriors ran between the two Matoran, obscuring the line of sight and buying Skorm and Azza precious moments to continue their advance.  "We're gonna make it, just a few strides more!"  The bird was so close...

Edited by Azibo

Movin' to Montana soon.  Gonna be a dental floss tycoon.

Casually looking to buy some Kanohi.  PM me if you've got some neat ones please.

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IC: One Seeking Redemption

 

 

IC:

 

A pair of eyes observed a toa with wooden armor approach the walls of Ihu-Koro.  This new visitor looked rather battered, as if he had been on the wrong end of a few too many bar fights.  Given the appearance of this toa's armor, either Ihu-Koro was his first chance to see anyone who could repair the armor, or the toa was too poor, foolish, or sentimental to start wearing new armor in better condition.

 

Vrill had been keeping an eye on those entering and exiting the village in his spare time, which he had plenty of.  Having been in the village for several weeks, he could spot the local residents real quick, and this newcomer was certainly not a toa he had seen around before.  More often than not it was a caravan bringing supplies or a raiding party returning that would be at the gates, so a lone visitor was less common.  Perhaps the newcomer brought interesting news from another koro.

 

Vrill's gaze turned from the window he was looking out of and back to the empty bottle in his hand.  He absorbed the empty glass container and ordered another round from the bartender.  Other than the silent toa of crystal sitting near the window, there were only a few miners in the bar who mostly kept to themselves.

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IC: Skyra

 

My heart skipped a beat as I let that one fact sink in. Krayn wasn't getting on Destiny. I tried to tell myself it would be fine, that he was more than capable of getting out on his own. But I felt sick, and I had already been feeling sick, the lightheadedness and dizziness were a constant, the only thing keeping me awake was the sheer cold and adrenaline. I could feel the stickiness of the blood that was trailing down the left side of my face...I'm sure I looked about as bad as I felt. 

 

"A-Alright..." As much as I wanted to argue with him, convince him to just get on Destiny, I wasn't in any position to argue, for a lot of reasons. "...y-you all better make it out of here though...or I won't forgive you..." It was a selfish thing to say but I couldn't bring myself to care at that moment. I won't be able to forgive myself either...

 

I steered myself and took a look around as best I could with my waning vision. Everyone who was supposed to be on Destiny needed to be on five minutes ago. Destiny was one of the fastest Kahus there was, but she was going to be significantly slowed down with everyone who was going to be riding. The possibility of getting shot down was high. 

 

"We need to get going...before I pass out..." 


My Bzprpg Profiles, Marvel Rebirth Profiles

Skyra | Savina | Darien | Hakari | Mekana | Oceanna | Taleen | Mimira | Denerium | Talinka | Arisaka | Wraith | Xxeth | Silene

 

 

 

 

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IC:

 

Azza and Skorm were within reach of the bird now. Azza put his disk back on his back in preparation of being hoisted up on the getaway Rahi.  He looked behind him and saw the entrance to the warehouse filled with Legacy goons- and none of them seemed merciful.

 

"Get me up, please!"  Azza shouted while reaching up towards the saddle of the Rahi.


Movin' to Montana soon.  Gonna be a dental floss tycoon.

Casually looking to buy some Kanohi.  PM me if you've got some neat ones please.

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Kale Ironshaper- Ko-koro- Warehouse

IC: Azza abruptly felt himself lifted into the air and almost tossed onto the back of the waiting Destiny, followed a second later by Skorm. Both movements were accompanied by grunts of physical and mental effort as the silver Toa behind them heaved. With a long exhale Kale turned to the rahi's pilot, grimacing as he caught sight of the blood streaming down the side of the fellow guard's face. With a hand that only slightly shook he reached out and gently ran a pair of fingers over the weeping gash. Metallic skin reformed and the river of of red stopped, for now. It was a rush job and would need proper tending to at a later date. But hopefully it would prevent Skyra from drifting off and falling off her own bird. Meeting her eyes he spoke a single word.

"Go."

Spinning to face the oncoming brigands he growled in aside to Krayn. "See any good buildings we can collapse. You know, fill these Karzed idiots' eye with dust?"

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"I serve the weak. I serve the helpless. I am their sword and their shield. If you want to strike at them, you must go through me, and I am not so easily moved."

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IC: Skyra

I winced slightly as the wound closed up from Kale’s quick patch job, but I felt slightly better afterwards, not much, but it was enough for now. I gave Kale a somewhat sluggish nod and let out a sharp whistle, with a sharp cry Destiny’s wings started to glow as she took off like a rocket into sky. 

I forced my regrets and distress away as we flew higher, right now I just needed to focus on staying awake and getting everyone on board to safety, I’d worry about the rest later. I just...just needed to stay awake...I...

A sudden cry from Destiny jolted me back to being fully alert. We’d made quite some distance from Ko-koro already but we needed to land soon. Destiny was being strained by the extra weight, and I was barely keeping it together.

Thankfully Destiny was a highly intelligent and self-reliant bird, and had already started decent towards what looked like a small village. Was that Ihu-koro? I think so...if I’m remembering right...it’s hard to think...I just want to close my eyes a little...

...

Destiny landed in the village of Ihu-koro, Skyra’s body swayed as she promptly fell off and into the snow below, unconscious. 

 


My Bzprpg Profiles, Marvel Rebirth Profiles

Skyra | Savina | Darien | Hakari | Mekana | Oceanna | Taleen | Mimira | Denerium | Talinka | Arisaka | Wraith | Xxeth | Silene

 

 

 

 

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IC: A Pilgrim

Erith took a breath as he stepped through the exterior gates to Ihu-Koro, the winds of Ko-Wahi finally ceasing their never-ending battering of his disheveled form. A few pairs of eyes followed him as he entered and he sighed deeply.

Perhaps he should have repaired his armor after all, looked less like the walking zombie he felt. He clenched his fist at his side and willed the suit of wooden armor he wore to stitch itself back together. To their credit, the blackened and dried timber plates tried. But it was too dead, too cauterized, and he was too out of practice with bulk usage of his Toa energy to force it over the edge. Besides, he'd need the remaining power he had. For some use or another. He adjusted his tabard to cover the worst parts of his armor, trying to look as presentable as he could given how tattered even it had become.

In a few short seconds, though, his concerns were forgotten. Something fell from the sky, a shape screaming with motion that resolved into a Kahu, landing somewhat gracefully on the edge of the village square. The eyes watching him were no longer interested--and for a moment he took a breath, relieved to escape notice for just a moment--

Karzahni, he was supposed to be taking an active role!

Grinding his teeth, he ran forward. His hand clutched at the katana on his back, then he shook his head and kept sprinting until he got to the wounded Le-Toa's side. He dropped to one knee, checking her pulse, before--

"MEDIC!" he shouted, looking around.

NPC:

The Ihu-Koronans had a much more measured but less trusting response. Only after a few moments--when it was clear that the stranger who had fallen from the sky on the back of Kahu was no Ko-Koro agent here to kill them all--did they run off to retrieve a healer and the Ahka. It would take a few moments, at the least. 

Edited by A Distant Memory
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IC:

A fresh glass of ale slid across the bar to the silent toa of crystal, who responded with a courteous nod in the bartender's direction.  Vrill took a sip while he stared at the newcomer entering the gates.  This new toa seemed rather embarrassed at the disheveled appearance of his armor, as he not-so-subtly shifted his clothing around to look less like he left his equipment in a mahi pen for a week.

Looks like this guy hasn't seen a koro in a lon-

Vrill's train of thought was derailed by the telltale screeching of a... kahu? The bird's strained calls turned out not to be, as Vrill initially theorized, a sign that he had been drinking too much, but instead the noises of a real kahu.  A real kahu that apparently held more people than recommended by Le-Koronan air traffic safety standards, one of whom immediately performed an emergency dismount with the finesse of a matoran after having a bit too much Salamander's.

In his months in Ihu-Koro, Vrill had never seen an entrance quite like that.

Time to investigate...

The toa used his powers to seal his glass (Never let good ale go to waste!) and fused that glass to the crystalline outer layer of his armor, before jogging out of the bar and towards the gate. Some guardsmen were approaching the scene, while a few others sprinted inside the koro to get a doctor. Once Vrill got to the landing site, he was able to get a closer look at that toa from earlier - his armor was mostly made of wood, practically rotten at this point, with enough dents and scrapes in it that it looked a failed experiment at training a rahkshi to be a carpenter. While this toa looked like he literally lived under a rock, he did jump at the first chance to help a stranger out, so perhaps his heart wasn't as rotten as his armor...

...Although, I'd bet almost any cold-blooded killer on the island would rush to the aid of a swooning Le-Toa who looked like that...

Vrill was no doctor, so he left treating wounds to the professionals that would arrive any minute, and turned to the others who arrived on the Gukko - who each looked like they took a beating just as bad, with too many blood stains within that crew to tell who was bleeding or who was trying to stop it.

"Who are all of you and what caused this to happen?"

Edited by BULiK
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IC: Azza- The Skies Above/Ihu-Koro

Azza's mind drifted into an almost slumber-state as his hands instinctively gripped the Kahu's feathers.  Azza had no great fear of heights, but he had never flown before.  Some circumstance for his first time soaring through the air: bruised, beaten, and nearly frozen solid from the icy Ko-Wahi atmosphere.  He seemed to be running on pure adrenaline and willpower for an eternity; as bitter as the winds were, he felt relieved his ordeal was finally over.  "Unless we crash, I guess." Azza was ever the realist.

The dark Matoran took the time in the air to rest a bit, and reflect on his ordeal.  Azza always held the belief that it's better to deal with trauma and experience sooner rather than later.  As a Matoran of gravity, he understood all too well the ill-effects of carrying too much weight.  He had come to Ko-Koro before all the madness.  He witnessed the slaughter of innocents at the hands of those monsters who took over the city.  He never made many friends, but it still racked his heart to witness so much death.  Then he spent months upon months living in quite isolation, hoping the next time his door was busted in the assailants would just take his few coins or metals and not his life.  He heard the battle to reclaim the Koro break out, and felt that freezing Toa-storm encase the city.  Perhaps it was the time spent in meditation and inward reflection had hardened his resolve to the point of being brave enough to run for it.  "I can't believe I bested those thugs in the streets," he thought when remembering the Matoran he evaded.  "I think I have two disks to my name now."  Azza was too afraid to let go of the bird to check.  

"I'm lucky so many Toa assaulted the warehouse." This peaceful flight finally allowed Azza the time to understand just how desperate his escape truly was. "I'm lucky I was saved." This humble Matoran had sprinted through the assembly of wounded evil-doers and survived a scuffle with evil Toa, though his body surely felt the effects of battle.  "I need to replace my lost Kanohi, number 1."  Making lists seemed to improve his productivity.  "After a new mask, I should see about a new living residence."  The Kahu screeched, and Azza felt the wind change direction as they descended towards the snow.  "Ihu-Koro... I remember this place." Before taking up residence in Ko-Koro, Azza and visited this village- or maybe "settlement" was a better term.  Even for him, the living was isolated, so he didn't stay long enough to leave an impression.  "Maybe I should rest here for a time..."

The bird landed, and the Le-Toa pilot slumped off with a resounding thud, her green armor in stark contrast to the snow she lay in.  While Azza forced his frozen hands to let go of the bird, he saw a ragged Toa in armor made of... driftwood?  Maybe he preferred the rugged, shabby look.  Maybe he was a survivor of the battle, too.  The Toa cried for a medic as he rushed to the aid of the Toa of Air.  Azza prepared to dismount as another Toa emerged from the village, with other Ihu-Koro residents following close behind.  

Though his eyes seemed barely functional at this point, Azza still perceived this Toa's glassy appearance. "Crystal," he thought.  "I can't remember ever meeting a Toa of that element before."

"Who are all of you and what caused this to happen?"

This was as good an opportunity as any.  "Ko-Koro happened!"  Azza had to force his voice to leave his mouth; even his throat felt weak.  "There was a battle, I mean there is a battle there, right now.  Many Toa are trying to take it back, even the Maru are fighting!"  Azza slid off the side of the bird, but his landing lacked grace.  Stumbling to his knees, the cold Matoran did his best to look the Toa in the eyes.  "I was living in the city, a captive.  When I heard the fighting, I made a run for it.  I got caught up in the scuffle.  One of the rogues even stole my Kanohi." With a tremendous effort, Azza stood back up and approached the Toa.  "I hope there's spare ones here... Could you help me find one? And maybe take me somewhere warmer?"

OOC: I think I'll replace my old mask with a black noble Matatu, if that gets addressed next post, jsyk.  Open for interaction in Ihu-Koro, but talking with Vrill right this moment.

 

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Movin' to Montana soon.  Gonna be a dental floss tycoon.

Casually looking to buy some Kanohi.  PM me if you've got some neat ones please.

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IC:

The first person to address Vrill was a kanohi-less matoran. At a glance, clearly this matoran had been involved in combat recently, but the lack of recognizable uniform or much weaponry suggested this matoran was either a someone who lost all their gear in the battle, a civilian, or someone trying to look like o
ne.

"Ko-Koro happened!" 

Vrill's mind raced as he listened to the matoran talk.

Ko-Koro? o h n o


"There was a battle, I mean there is a battle there, right now.  Many Toa are trying to take it back, even the Maru are fighting!"

Vrill continued to listen to the matoran. It sounded like this matoran was still trying to process for himself what in Mata Nui's name had happened in the past few hours.

Maru?!? Did they find the hostages?


"I was living in the city, a captive.  When I heard the fighting, I made a run for it.  I got caught up in the scuffle.  One of the rogues even stole my Kanohi."

Vrill kept silent, but his stare intensified as he thought of the multitude of disastrous outcomes that this Ko-Koro battle could have. His heart was still heavy with the mystery of how many of his comrades died on the initial attack, as well as some of those within his own unit that must have inevitably been "disappeared" by the Koro's mercenary goons.

"I hope there's spare ones here... Could you help me find one? And maybe take me somewhere warmer?"

Vrill extended an open hand towards the matoran, and in his palm a small heatstone materialized.

"Take this. Stay warm. The guards here will take care of you," the toa of crystal responded.

Leaving other toa to assist the Le-Toa (Vrill assumed the man who looked like someone who took a dumpster dive in Le-Koro would make her feel more at home) Vrill then moved to check on the last passenger - some strange looking female toa strapped into a seat... with a parakuka on her back?  Vrill knew all too well how dangerous anything with a parakuka was. This pilot and matoran were lucky that this toa was unconscious during their flight... a panicked transformation in flight could have been the end to them all.

"We have a parakuka here! Be careful!"

OOC: That's Soraph as that last passenger

Edited by BULiK
There was a lot of confusion about who was and wasn't on the kahu

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IC: Skyra

I like sand. It's soft and fluffy and gets everywhere. I let it get between my toes as I watched Tillian teach Liara how to surf. It was pretty funny to watch actually, it's a good thing Tillian was patient. I was rarely one to just sit back and watch from the sidelines but, this felt kind of nice, I should try to take it easy more often...what did running around the island a mile a minute ever get me anyway? 

Besides, Liara was rocking that swimsuit...Tillian wasn't looking half bad either but don't tell him I said that, he'd never let me live it down. I myself was wearing a matching outfit to Liara's. I think I filled it out a bit better than her but...I mean it wasn't like it mattered right? It wasn't a contest or anything...

I touched the sand with my fingers and dug into it a bit, feeling how soft and cold it was...wait...cold? Why was the sand cold? I suddenly winced and pulled my hand away, it was way too cold! In fact now that I thought about it...I was feeling cold all over...and my head was pounding...it hurts so much make it stop! STOP!

-----

I opened my eyes slowly, my entire head felt like it was going to explode and I felt chilled to the bone. I couldn't remember...what happened? Where was I? Through my blurry vision I could see someone looking at me, before he looked around and yelled something, I couldn't quite make out what he said. I tried to speak but I don't think anything comprehensible came out. My head hurt so much I think I was crying, my face felt wet. 


My Bzprpg Profiles, Marvel Rebirth Profiles

Skyra | Savina | Darien | Hakari | Mekana | Oceanna | Taleen | Mimira | Denerium | Talinka | Arisaka | Wraith | Xxeth | Silene

 

 

 

 

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OOC: Korero from Le-Wahi

IC (Korero)

Wind howled in Korero's ears. Free-fall tugged at his stomach.

In other circumstances he'd have Jumped back into the abandoned house the Maru had used as a rally point. But his intervention in Oreius' duel had been a kick to the hornets' nest: Ko-Koro would be on high alert, even if Stannis, Sulov and Leah had managed to reach the hostages without an alarm being raised, which seemed unlikely. Stealth was now a luxury he couldn't afford: he had to find the others as quickly as possible, and the fastest way to do that was from above.

So he'd Jumped into thin air, about a kio above the Ko-Koro rooftops.

He tilted his body forward like a skydiver, arms stretched back in a V-shape for balance, and dropped faster through the freezing Ko-Wahi air. Calling on his elemental powers, he bent the air currents to his will, summoning winds to catch him and turn his fall into flight. Soaring, he cast his eyes down at the city of ice, seeking urgently for signs of battle or escape. It didn't take him long to find them.

As he zeroed in on the area around the warehouse, his attention was grabbed by a Kahu launching itself into flight from nearby. He could just about make out a number of figures on its back before it sped off into the mountains. He had no time to spare wondering who was escaping on the bird, or why: cobblestones were rushing up to meet him.

Jets of air slowed his fall to a momentary, unsteady hover, and he dropped the remaining bio's distance into the street amid a shockwave of gusts. In a heartbeat, his shield was off his back and on his forearm, interposed between him and an oncoming wave of Ko-Koro's occupiers.

He looked quickly back over his shoulder, at the rag-tag but obviously resilient group of infiltrators that were still standing.

"The other Maru," he asked urgently. "Where are they?"

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On 2/5/2019 at 7:37 AM, Keeper of Kraata said:

The transformed Fe-Skakdi felt the blast before she saw it, and her dive was altered into a spin in an entirely different direction from where she had initially aimed. She slammed into the stone wall of the room and tumbled onto the ground. She was angry. This was her moment to shine, and this Maru was almost literally raining on her parade. Fyura pushed herself over and her long legs continued the motion, bringing her upright. As she rose, she tore one of her throwing axes off her belt and flicked it at the Ga-Toa. With a flick like tossing a dart she put the same violence behind it as a toa might with an overhand swing. But the axe wasn't the plan, just something to keep the Maru busy for a second. With her other hand, she pulled the volo lutu launcher she kept, now tiny in her swollen and stretched form. She aimed at the wall that Leah had weakened, at a support, and fired.

 

 

IC [Leah - Beneath Ko-Koro Warehouse]:

Leah, never taking her eyes off her opponents, saw the Skakdi move, saw the shimmer of the blade flung at her. She brought her weapon up instinctively. With a metallic twang, the axe deflected off her staff and away from her. 

That's when she noticed Fyura was no longer focused on her, instead aiming past her with her other weapon. There was no time to stop her. There was barely enough time to see what she was aiming at. Her eyes widened with the realization of what was about to happen. The launcher fired with a crack, the support pillar crumbled with a boom and the building shook with the impact. Dust, rocks and bits of ice started falling from the ceiling, no longer able to support the weight of the rest of the building and snow piled atop it's roof.

But there was something the Skakdi did not know: bringing down the ceiling had been her plan as well, just not this soon. She and Stannis were to stall the Makuta followers until Sulov had created an exit, then she would collapse the entrance to the room. Stannis would catch up, the rock posing no obstacle for the Toa of stone. Her channeling water into the walls and ground had not just been to help create the escape route - it created predetermined breaking points along which the ceiling would fall as well. But that was before Fyura had blasted the support column. The entire thing would give way any moment, potentially burying them all. 

Leah jumped back hoping to reach safer ground. Just as she did, there was another rumble and a large section of the roof caved in, obscuring her view of Fyura and her ally. The next instant, a shadow fell over her. She thought she was about to be crushed, but the only impact she felt was that of a heavy hand on her shoulder, pulling her firmly backwards.

"Leah." Turning around, she found Sulov looking at her, his stoic expression unchanging as ever. And past him, she saw a tunnel opening had appeared in the far wall, through which the Matoran they'd freed were making a hasty exit. "Time to go." 

They entered the passage, Sulov at the rear, moving quickly until they caught up to the Matoran. "Are we being followed?" one of them asked, fearfully. Leah looked back behind her. Past Sulov, she could see the earth closing in behind him again, her brother using his element to prevent pursuit. But it was dangerous to underestimate an enemy, so she remained cautious. "Not right now. But we need to keep moving. It's not over yet." was her reply. 

She quickened her pace, making her way to the front of the group of escapees, to take point and deal with whatever they would find on the other side.

OOC: Yay, forums are back! Just as well, it was time to get things moving again, which is why I cleared this post with staff to get us out of that basement.

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On 2/1/2019 at 3:26 AM, BULiK said:
"A pleasure to meet you as well," Nichou replied.  "I have been working with the townsfolk on the construction of the newer buildings in the town that house the refugees of Ko-Koro."

There was a short pause at the mention of the fallen city as Nichou's eyes momentarily drifted elsewhere.  Everyone knew the stories, and recognized that the tales of the survivors who escaped paled in comparison to the experiences of the defenders who did not survive or the hostages whose safety hinged on the whims of a madman.  Nichou had seen the glistening walls of the sanctum before, he feared what they may look under the grip of heretics.  The thought made Nichou's blood boil.

"While we now have enough shelter for the refugees of the siege, there is still work to be done, still more ways to help them," the onu-matoran sighed, his gaze momentarily returning to the floor.  "Unfortunately my assistance is limited to my skills with timber.  While it isn't a glamorous duty, it's where I've been most effective."

IC | Brykon

The kaitiaki smiled broadly then and cast an accusatory finger at Nichou. "So my assumptions were right. You are the mastermind to all the sawing and hammering echoing in the valley!" he exclaimed in jest. He laughed for a second longer, then relaxed.

"I'm glad. The refugees have come down in droves and only recently slowed to a trickle. My friends in the other villages tell me Ihu-Koro is the new ground zero in the war effort and the coastal hovels are unable to help beyond the rare transport of handfuls of villagers to other Koro, which leaves us to take people in. We have always been a haven, but good intentions of taking on fleeing refugees only go so far as our resources, and The Massif is in a position of bountiful resources and skilled craftsmen to support that influx. 

"Many of those refugees have passed their thanks for the work of the quiet carpenter who gave them a place to rest and feel safe in. That's you, I see now. I want to be sure you know of the good your efforts have done." 

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 BZPRPG Profiles / BZPRPG Rules and Index / Pictures Topic / NM Q&A 

"... Even you, EmperorWhenua, you stupid beautiful contrarian, you." —Tyler Durden

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IC: Azza- Ihu-Koro

"Take this. Stay warm. The guards here will take care of you."

The Crystal Toa handed Azza a heatstone made from the Toa's innate energy.  Just a few seconds of clutching the object relieved his hands of the stinging, icy feeling that permeated through all the parts that weren't completely numb.  Azza drew it close to his chest and looked back up to thank the Toa, but he had already moved on to helping the others off Destiny.  Instead, several Matoran guards began attending the scene, with one wrapping his arm around Azza's sore shoulders while ushering him forward."

"Come with me, this way.  We'll replace that mask and find a blanket for you." This Matoran was mostly grey, with black hands and a Hau that matched them.  The pair walked as fast as Azza's tired legs would allow, and soon entered a large hut.  The walls had several spears and shields racked, several cots formed rows along one side of the room, and a few tables encircled a lit hearth on the other. Azza was led by the Matoran to one of the larger chests beneath a row of shields.  "We have several spare Kanohi here, I'm sorry if you can't find one to your liking.  Please, take a moment and find whichever one you prefer.  Anything you need we'll help you with."  The Matoran left the room, leaving Azza alone to sift through the Kanohi.  Most of them were in various greyscale colors.  Azza tried on one pink Miru then a yellow Pakari just to see how silly he looked.  It felt good to have a mask again; his body was starting to heal.  After several grey masks, Azza decided on a black, noble Matatu.  He closed his eyes and hugged the heatstone, before a sudden feeling of coziness encased his shoulders.  "Here's a blanket.  Sorry if it smells a bit.  I just grabbed the first one I could.  I have to report to our captain now.  We need to figure out how best t handle this situation.  Someone should be by to debrief you.  Please, feel free to rest anywhere, and don't hesitate to ask if you need something."  The guard hustled out of the room, leaving Azza alone.  He walked towards the hearth, but the fire and the heatstone combined were too hot too soon.  "I'll watch what's happening outside,"" he thought.  So Azza walked out to the porch, pressed his back against the wall, then slid down until he was sitting on the stone floor, thankful that it seemed swept of snow recently.  There Azza sat, huddled in a blanket, holding a warming gem and adjusting to the feel of his new mask.  Azza's legs began to let their ache be known, his shoulders and sides began to reveal their bruising, and his chest felt tired from seemingly ages of labored breathing.  But finally, Azza could rest.  He almost felt like falling asleep right there.  Instead, he just allowed his eyes to rest in between moments of observing the villagers attending to the others who arrived via bird.  Many were carefully attending to the one figure Azza didn't remember formally encountering.  Some great deal was being made about the... thing on her back.  And that Le-Toa seemed to be regaining consciousness from her spot on the ground.  And then of course there was that Toa of Gravity whom most of all Azza owed his rescue to.  "I'll have to thank him, after we're all not so banged up," he decided.  

 

The snow melted on his mask as the winds seemed to die down.  A calming sensation spread throughout the Matoran's body.  Azza was a survivor.


Movin' to Montana soon.  Gonna be a dental floss tycoon.

Casually looking to buy some Kanohi.  PM me if you've got some neat ones please.

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IC: The Dervish/Just Outside Ihu-Koro

It was as if the mountain were aware of the events transpiring in Ko-Koro. As Arabeth trudged through the snow, away from the battle, nursing her wounds, the winds began to howl, snow and ice whipping across her tattered frame. She had been on the run for the better part of a day, and it was so frigid that wounds that would have hurt from the punishment of sleet and snow were numb to all sensation. All she knew was the rhythm of her steps and one thought in mind:

Escape.

She did not know how long the journey took, as her mind seemed to go blank in ever lengthening stretches, swallowed by the memories of the past few days. She had been a fool. Why didn't she listen to Ishi? And where was that spook?

An image floated in her mind. A dilapidated shanty town, broken and twisted, full of the desperate and forlorn. Xa-Koro. A home that no longer existed.

Then, like waking from a dream, the image dissolved into clear view as she opened her eyes. There was a dilapidated refugee town, but this was not Xa-Koro. Too much snow...

Ihu-Koro. I'm safe.

The blue and white Toa, shrouded in her tattered grey cloak, stumbled into the tent city around Ihu-Koro, falling unconscious onto the floor just steps away from the gate around Ihu-Koro proper.

OOC: Open for interaction

Edited by NorikSigma
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OOC: Eisen will be handled separately, in the near future. This'll just be for Krayn in the meantime.

IC:

If Krayn believed Destiny had a sense of humor, he'd have had to laugh at being met with the Maru of the village he renounced.

As it was he heard the Toa of Air coming before he saw him. He wasn't familiar with the specifics of the Maru's mask, but the sound of suddenly displaced air was unmistakable. And the man arrived quickly from the sky while he considered Kale's question. The situation wasn't quite what he'd envisioned before. There was a lot more actual fighting than he'd originally planned. There was no room to retreat to their erstwhile base; they would be overrun immediately if they stopped moving for even a second. And it was doubtful that Skyra would be in any shape to send Destiny back to pick any of them up.

"The Maru are in there," The De-Toa pointed with the barrel of his weapon at the warehouse, and past the oncoming wave of foes waiting to tear them to bits as a lesson. "With the hostages. Stannis was holding them off last I knew. If you can get all of them out, we can focus on our own."

"I think we can collapse that one, between us." He said to Kale, this time gesturing with his chin to avoid taking his aim away from the enemy. ""Buy us a little time. We're going to have to get moving and keep moving, they'll find a way around before long. If we get encircled we're dead. Praggos is going to have to help Cyrix here. You're going to have the best chance of creating an opening to escape, Kale. You should take point. I can bring up the rear, and Four and Arankhe can keep an eye on our flanks. Only shot any of us have got at getting out of here."


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On this eve, the thirtieth anniversary of that first colony, many are left to wonder; is the world fast approaching a breaking point?

 

 

  Breaking Point: An OTC Mecha RPG

 

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IC:

Given the calm silence that permeated the chapel a mere minute before, Nichou was pleasantly surprised for a joke to be one of the first things Brykon said to him after introducing himself. Nichou chuckled at the toa's remark, a well-placed moment of levity after the few minutes of prayer and self-reflection of those in the chamber

"Thank you, I'm glad to hear how much my work is helping them. I have much practice creating furniture, sculptures, and trinkets, but architecture is a skill I did not have much training in before now - the only work on buildings I did before I came here was when I helped during  in the reconstruction of Onu-Koro after the rahkshi attack at the end of the war. I've learned a lot during my time here - by walking down the street I can see just how much my buildings have improved over time. Knowing the difference that each home makes in the lives of the refugees inspires me to make each home better than the last."

"It's a shame they lost their original homes, but maybe one day Ko-Koro could be rebuilt. That's the true victory - even if an army is able to drive out the makuta-worshippers and mercenaries, the final way to defeat Makuta's destruction is to create - rebuilding and repopulating Ko-Koro. If such a thing is possible is the question all the akiri must be asking themselves."

"How do you think this war with the new Ko-Koro will end?"

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Kale Ironshaper- Ko-koro- Warehouse

IC: It was a good plan, Krayn was a skilled tactician and Kale agreed with him. The building the other Toa had chosen was a multi story affair with a large helping of powdery snow on top. When it went down there would be debris and floating ice crystals all over the place. Perfect cover for a retreat in the face of a superior force. Of course any structure that large had to meet certain structural requirements, but this particular building had suffered as much as any of the koro's others under Nightfall's tender mercies. Someone had knocked a hole in the side of the ground floor. Whether it had been in the fight for the town or the subsequent looting made no difference. What mattered was that it was a weakness that could be exploited.

Kale was beside the building in a blur of motion. his eyes roving the remaining walls and corners even as he draw power from the tools of the fallen Makuta worshipers. Battered blades and buckled shields faded into flakes of rust, the building itself groaned as structurally important nails followed suit. Disregarding the ominous noises Kale walked to a wall adjacent to the destroyed one. One hand rested on it, then the other. The lead slug from an air gun thunked into the wall nearby as lines of silvery metal spread out from the two contact points. Hardened steel punched through the mortar holding the various stones together. Robbed of their cohesion there was little they could do when the silver Toa hauled back on the lines, gathered them into a ball and hurled it through the new severely weakened wall. Moved more by will than physical force the gleaming sphere sent cut stone flying into the interior of the building, followed a second later by more stone exploding outward as the makeshift implement of destruction was pulled back through the side of the building.

That had done it, if the snapping and cracking sounds now emanating from the structure were anything to go off of. A rather nasty looking kanoka disk slicing through the air next to him drove the point home. It was time to go. Kale took the hint and exited as swiftly as he had arrived. Behind him wooden supports snapped and stone cracked as the building collapsed in a pile across the street. It was hard to see if it had done much else what with all the snow and stone powder in the air. but that had rather been the point after all.

He didn't stop when he reached the rest of the group, just slowed down to a normal walk. They'd have gotten ready to move while he was dealing with the building. A group of professionals for the most part. He did give the emerald Maru a nod of acknowledgment as he passed though. A thought crossed his mind as the destructive ball of gleaming metal rusted to nothing behind him.

Wait, Krayn had said 'between us.' Well karz, no point worrying about that now.


"I serve the weak. I serve the helpless. I am their sword and their shield. If you want to strike at them, you must go through me, and I am not so easily moved."

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IC:

Reordin shifted his feet atop the ice, wondering if he was dreaming.

Everything about his life would have been surreal to the callow soldier he had been all those years ago, when the walls of the Koro above him had been his reason for living; he had left them a cocksure Matoran of the Sanctum Guard, questioning the meaning of his life and craving only the good fight that lay at the heart of the Nui-Rama Hive, and the handful of alleged answers he returned with held no meaning; he had left to drive the darkness from the heart of Ta-Koro, and only driven it here; he had considered Kopaka Mata an idol, a hero whose death was worthy of the songs the Guard had sung of him. The parts of Kopaka that still remained hadn't even been worth the funeral dirge. In his heart, every time he had left Ko-Koro and returned, led back home by the strings of Destiny, he had always felt like that same Matoran - still just chasing a way to remain a simple Lieutenant of the Sanctum Guard. But the Sanctum Guard was dead now. It had fought to the last gasp and finally given out in the first fight for Ko-Koro, and its death was a fixed point in history.

Reo wondered where along the line the Matoran in him had died, and how he had never noticed it.

As his ragtag force climbed off the boat, one after the other, he greeted them with handshakes and thanks - until he started to get to the last of the Island Liberation Force, his friends, the ones he had made back when his knowledge of the Virtues ended at Duty. Aronis Ril came first, and he clasped hands and bumped shoulders with the depth-challenged Toa of Fire.

"You feel any better about fireworks now that you can see them, big shot?" the drunken bombadier asked.

"Meet me on top of the Sanctum after this," the Toa Maru of Ice replied, "and we'll see."

"Good."

Alfon was next, and the two clasped hands as Ril had before completing things in a series of complicated fistbumps, likely improvised by both of them in an attempt to confuse the other. It served better than words ever could. Then came Plagia, who looked ready to one-up even Alfon for a second before they mutually decided to hug. Reo wrapped the crook of his arm around her neck and held her for a second, remembering the dead-eyed Toa who had interrupted his recruitment into the Maru to ask for a shovel. She had wanted to bury her friend.

"We're gonna do it, Reo," said the brawler. He wondered if she had the same memory that he did, or if it had all become a blur to her. Part of him hoped it had. 

"I know." He let her go, and she sidled up to Alfon and Ril. Skrihen came last, attempting to brush right by him. He thought of letting her for a second, but his arm darted out of its own accord and caught her by the shoulder where a hot-pink Mark had once glowed. He thought of the panic that gripped his chest when he had seen her cross swords with Heuani, and whether she remembered it at all when she looked at him. Skri...

"Thank you," was all he could say, and he let go of her shoulder. She didn't budge; she, like him, was trapped in the ice. Then she joined Plag, and they hugged too. The Island Liberation Force. He thought of the day that they had fought and bled together in the Hive. It had been Reo who had first commandeered a Rama and steered it against its master, turning the course of the battle with only two knives and creating a second regiment of cavalry for those suicidal enough to lead its charge. He thought of every man of the Sanctum Guard he had brought with him to Pala-Koro, all of whom underneath the ground outside what had become their Suva. 

He thought of Trakuda. Trakuda, who had bantered with Reo, laughed beside Reo, fought beside Reo since the first day he had seen Pala-Koro. Trakuda, who lashed himself to Reo's back when it seemed that their legs were on the verge of quitting. Trakuda, who had undone those lashes and taken every explosive the Sanctum Guard had brought when he knew the end was nigh. In the end, he'd had more wounds handy than Madu, but he had gotten all the way to the edge of the Hive and blown open the door that would lead to the island's salvation with his own body. Reo thought of Trakuda often.

He would have made a good Maru.

The Maru's duty is solely to fight the darkness.

Mata Nui. Wake up. If I have to be here, you have to be here.

Reo turned to face the old smuggler's tunnel, a route used by many a cadet in their bold attempts for early shore leave. It was caved in by time, now, and more than one avalanche, but avalanches were no match for a Toa Maru - and an occupier's knowledge of his prize was no match for a soldier's memory of home. His handsome face was chafed by the freezing winds, and the wounds across his cheeks and jaw were flushed red with blood. So was the Muaka fur of his jacket. He had kept that jacket spotless all through their quest as the Wanderer's Company, up until the moment Makuta fell.

Let me see home one more time. Let it be still again, quiet, so quiet that I get bored like I used to during patrols. I miss being bored.

Now the collar and sleeves were awash with blood, but Reo was proud of the wear and tear of his old regalia. No markings won in a fight for one's homeland could ever be called a stain. 

Let me hear Korero's voice crack. Let me laugh with Leah. Let me fight beside Sulov one last time. One more time is all I need, and if at the end I'm out of luck, let me die with Echelon's blood on my tongue. And if I'm about to give in before then...

"Stand by for breach." Reo slung the Patero Launcher Sulov had made for him from over his back and leveled it at the weakest spot in the natural blockage over the tunnel. "This is going to get nippy."

Keep me standing for a few more seconds. Long enough to tie myself to Stannis. To...

The thought of apologizing to Stannis left his throat rawer than his cheeks.

Make things right.

"Breach," said the Lieutenant.

His finger twitched along the trigger, and a blizzard swallowed the ILF whole. The crew of the Infernavika took shelter where they could on the deck, protecting themselves and their more vulnerable crewmembers from the worst of the hail and sleet; by the time visibility cleared, Reo Saporta and his strike team had disappeared underneath the Koro, moving towards the bowels of the Sanctum. 

Ko-Wahi had already swallowed their tracks.

-Tyler

 

Edited by Tyler Durden
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whats up doc

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IC:

How the Karzahni had she gotten here? What was the sequence of events, where was the decision that brought her here?

"Of course."

It wasn't what she meant to say, but it was the only thing that made it to her lips. Nothing else felt right on her tongue, nothing else quite managed it. Something too small was better than bungling something too big. Words weren't her thing. Not if they mattered. These ones did, but the moment came and went in an infinite heartbeat while the Maru kept a grip on her shoulder. She tried, genuinely, but nothing else came. So she stepped off of the ship and made her way to Plagia's side, still stuck on how she had reached this time and place. 

Everyone else was there to liberate Ko-Koro, but Skrihen honestly couldn't care much less. She had never liked the place, and putting all the loonies in one place? Seemed like a grand idea. What were they gonna do? Cordon off the whole Wahi, let them freeze to death. Check back in a few decades and clear out any survivors. Perfect plan. The fools quarantined themselves. There was no bringing back the people they'd killed, there was no reason at all to get anyone else dead along the way. Who cared about the last gasps of a defeated zealot. But it had been Reordin's home, so he could never let it lie. He was a hero, so those deaths were to be avenged. And the rest of the little band, there were so few now, would follow him to the ends of the earth to get his home back.

She was no patriot, she was no hero, and there sure as Karz weren't any money in it. How had one chance meeting outside some outpost in Le-Wahi that no one had ever heard of lead here? Why had she put her neck on the line back then? The Toa of Shadow had almost killed her. It was the closest she'd ever come, the memory still sent a shiver down her spine. That face had been in her nightmares, the feeling of being crushed inside... Nothing. A blackness so deep it was nothing less than the void. Just thinking about it made her heart pump harder, made her pull her too-thin coat a little tighter around her. It made her afraid. The people in this village, the monsters at the end of this tunnel were like that. She'd met Echelon. Just once. She hadn't felt any need to meet him ever again. There was no reason to be here.

So why? Why was she always drawn back to these people? She walked away from them. Some of them walked away from her first. That was life. People left, they always would. Just a question of how long. But somehow she still bumped into them again, as random as the first time. And it was like she never left. She saw Plagia and she almost moved to pour a drink, she saw Alfon and she settled back into terrorizing the poor man. Saw him again and...

It didn't make sense.

Why she would stick her neck out for these people, not when she didn't really believe they'd stick theirs out for her. People don't do that. Not really.

...

But she was here.

These people were hers. This stupid, stupid little band that didn't deserve to be called a Force anymore. Ril, Alfon, Plag. Reo. It didn't matter what they would do for her, they were hers. They were hers to keep and maintain, as fiercely as Reordin felt about his home, and if this little band of idiots was going to walk into Karzahni then she was going to follow them. Follow them, guard them, and shed blood on their behalf. 

They had done nothing to deserve it. 

But it was theirs, anyway. Guess there was loyalty in her somewhere.

"Breach."

So she held on to the hand on her shoulder, and the arms around her, and the damnable smirks on her friends' faces.

And she stepped into the void to let the darkness slither around her dark enough to forget how long had passed since that day and prayed that she would see the sun again.

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On this eve, the thirtieth anniversary of that first colony, many are left to wonder; is the world fast approaching a breaking point?

 

 

  Breaking Point: An OTC Mecha RPG

 

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IC (Jin)

The alarm came out of the wind like a vulture, and it found me—

Wait, scratch that. We’ve already been through this. Been there, done that, took the pictures, got the T-shirt.

I was standing in the wind and the snow, and my body felt like it was gonna fall apart or freeze, one of the two. Flip a coin, choose your prize, yes, door number three is all of the above, you’ve won an all-expenses-paid trip to the worst Koro on the island where they’ll prop up your frozen corpse as a warning to anyone else dumb enough to brave the wastes. Red flags are cliché, passé, now, anyway

Rewind. You’re probably wondering how I got myself in this position. Well, it’s kind of a funny story:

I killed a guy in Po-Koro just to watch him die.

Killed a gal in Ga-Koro—didn’t even cry.

Sank a whole darn island and I didn’t blink an eye.

Killed a man in Ta-Koro…

…well, that’s where things went awry.

Focus.

Right. Alarm. Shake my head, pinch my arm, wake up. Check the connections on buzzers automatically, fingers running over the wires like they’ve done a million times before—

Wait. I’d done this already. Just a moment ago. I looked down, watched my fingers move over my skin like they weren’t even mine.

Why does everything feel so strange?

I was already moving. Nika and Pai long gone, or I’d left them, couldn’t remember which, and every alley looked the same, dark and cold and full of shadows so I just moved faster and hoped they wouldn’t catch up. The city was full of noise, and the alarm hung over everything like a circling bird of prey. Someone had kicked the hornets’ nest, maybe some villager desperate to take a stand against Echelon, or maybe something bigger. A rebellion? Another Koro’s army? The Maru? I didn’t know. I just kept moving. If there was one lesson I’d learned from Dor—don’t say his name don’t even think it

Just keep moving. They can’t touch you if you’re moving. They can’t hurt you if you don’t say their names, so keep the show on the road and just don’t stop. Don’t ever stop. I forced myself to laugh, an ugly sound that slipped through my lips as I ran. I was Jin, baby. Vortixx extraordinaire! I’d never stopped for anyone, and nobody could stop me. Not even me.

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OOC: Just to be clear, Skorm is still back in Ko-Koro.

IC:

Skorm watched as the gukko took off. "Godspeed," he said, to nobody in particular. That was several problems taken care of. Now, there was just the minor issue of escaping with their lives. The Ba-Toa turned to Krayn, obviously the leader of this group. "I'm still up. Where do you need me?"

Cyrix's breath wasn't deep, but it were filled with muttered curses. He took a pair bolt from his quiver, loaded them into his crossbow, and racked the bolt. "I... I can still shoot. But I'm really hoping these aren't broadheads."

*       *       *

The hike up to Ko-Koro's walls had been tense, and silent. Not just because of Vakua's muting, but Casanuva fought down the dread he felt. He couldn't even see the walls, what if he was stuck by an arrow, a bolt of lightning, a fireball, a boulder, something else he would never even see coming? The Fa-Toa clamped his jaw shut to stop the chattering. It was cold. Go figure. Someone bumped his shoulder, Kalyss.

:Lighten up, Cas. You're bleeding into the rest of us.: The athletically built Su-Toa glanced at Dakte. :Well, except him, probably.:

Casanuva nodded and rolled his shoulders. :Right. The walls shouldn't be too far, no real point worrying. Either we get there or we get pasted.:

Kalyss grimaced. :Not what I meant. Anyway, you getting a read on Soraph yet?:

Casanuva hadn't tried yet. He wanted to be close before he did and... and he didn't want to. Some part of him was afraid to. But it was time now. He held his head; a somatic gesture, one to help him focus. He felt the metal in the armor of his compatriots, and even their bodies. He felt North, a guiding beacon of constant, cold indifference. And he turned his mental world over in his head, focusing on the one bit of metal he had given Soraph.

There.

:I got a read. She's in the Koro, all right, and moving. Moving... up? Yeah, up, and fast. What could-"

Above them, a kahu laden with passengers streaked overhead. :She's on that bird!:

Zueya, for the most part silent until now, pointed at the wall. :The emplacements! They're gonna shoot it down!: On the wall, one of the massive patero launchers swiveled, aiming. Zueya felt her gut go icier than the terrain around her as it fired a projectile at the rahi. But a streaking bolt of plasma intercepted it, exploding like a firework.

Kalyss retracted her hand, the glow of plasma fading, and her Kakama started to glow. She pointed at emplacement, which was reorienting. She shouted something; her words were muffled, but the thought carried to Casanuva, Zueya, Vakua, and Dakte.

:Take the wall!: 

*       *       *

Fyura breathed heavily. Then she screamed. They were escaping! She had barely even fed! The skakdi mutant clutched her axe, her prized axe, and vaulted out the door. They were heading up, they had to be. She could rejoin the fray upstairs. Perhaps this day could be salvaged after all.

*       *       *

Aelied's conversation with Mako was interrupted when the kahu landed. The elder toa squinted, and sharply inhaled. "Soraph." Figuring the Datsue would follow, Aelied turned and strode toward the commotion, his long legs covering the distance quickly. He noted that Soraph had been wrapped in Skorm's new cloak; she was unconscious, but not bloody. The Bo-Toa checked her pulse, which was steady, and carefully began unwrapping the cloak bundling her, but froze. The elder toa stared at her neck.

"Mako," he said, soft enough to almost get drowned out. "Do you see this?"


BZPRPG Profiles


TOA KALTA: Casanuva Vakua Kalyss Skorm Zueya Aelied Cyrix


OTHERS: Denrika Fyura Raiyo Aokora Maeloc Askha Somei Sydelia


"They belong in a museum!"


"So do you!"

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IC:

Quoribay sprinted through the warehouse and jumped down the trapdoor. He found himself in a new world of subterranean hallways - there looked to be several side rooms and turns - from this entrance the treasure he sought could be in any direction, hiding away in a multitude of storage closets. This situation was a textbook example of why he doesn't normally pull the "break-into-a-warehouse-that-is-already-being-broken-into-to-find-loot-you-don't-know-the-location-of" strategy.

Unfortunately before Quoribay could decide which hallway he wanted to commit to, a large yellowish-orange skakdi sprinted around the corner. Quoribay didn't have a clue who Fyura was, but "angry running skakdi" was a universally understood introduction.

Did someone see me enter?

He didn't think anyone in the warehouse proper had been paying attention to him, given that they were too busy focusing on killing each other up there. It was way too soon for an alert to have been received down here, and if any remaining guards had seen him they would've just trapped him in the basement, not attack him while he's still at the only exit.

Quoribay stood still underneath the manhole, hoping the skakdi just wanted to get topside and wasn't after him. There wasn't really a point in running away, the only ways to run would be to the battle above or through the maze he found himself in now. He took a step back from the trapdoor and called out to the skakdi that was rapidly approaching.

"What happened down here? Is everything secure?"

If he played the part of a dumbstruck guard well enough, he might be able to blend in and get more info on where any cash was cached.

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IC (Korero)

Korero nodded his thanks to the Toa.

"If you get past the gates and need to evacuate, watch for a green flare," he said. "I'm calling in the Gukko Force. Might not be a lot of other ways out of the Wahi before this lot catch up with you."

With that, he focused on the warehouse — in whose wall he could see a gaping hole had been made, as good an entrance as any — and activated the Hiko.

In a flash of white, he was at the hole. He vaulted through, to find Stannis facing off against a Toa he realised with a jolt was the same one who had been duelling Oreius in the square. The same one who had...

Keep calm, Korero. There's two of us and one of him. You've got this.

"Well, then," the young Le-Toa called to the two combatants. "I'm glad you got the party started without me."

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OOC: Sisk and Gukko Force from Le-Wahi.

IC [Sisk - Ko-Wahi Skies]:

The mountains had drawn steadily closer, until the ridges ahead grew so tall that they filled the bird-riders entire field of view. At the same rate, visibility and temperature had deteriorated, as they flew deeper into the clouds piled up against the rocky slopes. 

Sisk reached into his saddle bag, and retrieved a thick cloak he wrapped around himself, as well as a pair of wooden snow goggles which he slotted over his masks eye holes. They came in handy in the ice and desert regions of the island to protect against the sting of snowflakes and sand in the air. Lastly, a strong light stone that slotted into a spot at the tip of the saddle. Even in near zero visibility, it would allow his fellow riders to stay in formation as they made their way to the Koro. 

Looking around him, he saw more and more lights come on in the gloom, giving faint illumination to the Gukko and Kahu carrying them. Every time their wings rose, the light would briefly catch along the edge of their feathers, creating a ghostly illumination. A smirk crept on the tamers face at the thought of someone seeing this from below. 

 

[Leah - Ko-Koro, underground]

The earth before them parted continuously, letting the Maru and rescued hostages pass, only to close behind them again. Sulov commanded his element casually, that it almost seemed like the ground did it independently. His stoic face showed no sign of his effort. And while Leah had taken point and walked with the outwards appearance of absolute confidence for their charges' sake, she could not deny feeling somewhat anxious. Yes, they had escaped the immediate danger, but they were not in the clear yet. To relax now would be dangerous. But worrying about every tiny thing that could go wrong between here and their destination wasn't helping either.

Clear your mind. Focus.

The thought echoed in her mind, but she didn't her it in her own voice. This one was much older and wiser. 

Right. 

She started to breath slow and steady in rhythm with their walking pace and pushed the intrusive thoughts aside.

Besides, the other seemed to say, there's more to look forward to than just daylight. Like, a certain someone...

Okay, thank you! she cut it off. That's enough wisdom for now! 

"Where are we going?" one of the Matoran inquired, breaking the silence in which they had proceeded since exiting the warehouse. They had advanced in their 'moving cavern' for a few minutes now, heading towards the next rendezvous point. Although it felt like they were walking in a straight line, Leah knew that Sulov made sure to alter course constantly, in case they were being tracked somehow. But if she had kept up with the changes in direction correctly, they were well on their way.

Leah looked back over her shoulder at the villagers, smiling encouragingly. "We're going to meet some friends." she replied with a wink.

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IC | Stannis Maru

"Welcome, Brother," the toa said in greeting to Korero's arrival without looking at him. His tone was flat and determined with his focus narrowed unwaveringly at Eisen, but there was a slight twist in his lips that betrayed a gleeful smile. He was used to the wiry toa appearing at the best moments, just as that plucky scholar did the first time so long ago in the alps of Ko-Wahi, and every time it was like an old friend came to visit.

Another rivulet of blood splattered from his arm onto the cold floor. "Eisen has been a very generous, but unkind, host."

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 BZPRPG Profiles / BZPRPG Rules and Index / Pictures Topic / NM Q&A 

"... Even you, EmperorWhenua, you stupid beautiful contrarian, you." —Tyler Durden

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IC Yasurek-Infernavika-Some tunnel in Ko-Wahi:

Yasurek raised the side of his cloak over his head as the explosion rocked the icy wall before them. Bits of ice and cold dust bounced off the makeshift barrier, and as the bits and pieces started to settle he took stock of the situation. Reordin and his posse had vanished through the still settling cloud of debris, with nary a trace of tacks to follow. It was a very stylish exit, Yasurek had to admit. Some people thought that being cool meant walking away from explosions without looking at them, but this lot had walked through an explosion while looking directly at it.

He started to clap, slowly, with a sarcasm meant for people who were no longer there. This had the added effect of shaking off some of the residual snow that had built up on him from the blast. "Wow. Yes, very good. Leave some of your backup behind so you all can look cool. Great planning. Tactical genius there. Ugh."

He slumped a bit in resignation, his somewhat bitter words giving no satisfaction. Part of him was tempted to remain here, figure out something to do, somewhere else to go, drift along to wherever life took him and continue to do nothing. It was all he had been doing for a long while.

But there are still things to be done. He still had a job he needed to complete. And so he started rifling through the weapon stores, strapping on his preferred loadout of too many spears and some blades. They still have to follow a tunnel from sea level to a ways up the mountain, and they've only got a minute or two head start. I can catch up. He took a moment to shoot a glance at his captain. Hopefully he'd have the same idea in mind.

"Captain, I'm of the thought that we follow after them to provide support," he began. "Abrupt and somewhat rude though their exit may have been, we've taken them this far, and I believe the deal was to assist them in the combat part of the job. Now I'll admit I have a bit of a personal stake in helping liberate my old home, but I don't think we should go about leaving a job half finished. If you have something else in mind, some actual tangible plan for us to do something else, then feel free to share it. Otherwise, I'm taking my weapons and I'm going to go stab some of the forces of darkness. You and anyone else in the crew is welcome to come along, just be quick about getting ready. They haven't gotten far, but there's no need to tarry."


I am pokemonlover360, master of hardly ever posting. You might know me from the many posts that I haven't made.
I'm around. If you really need me and I haven't responded quickly, send me a pm.

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IC [Sisk - Skies above Ko-Koro]:

The intensity of the battle in Ko-Koro had fallen off slightly. After the surprise attack on the warehouse, Makuta's followers were still trying to muster a proper response, so the pause was welcome. Reports had filtered down through the ranks, that a number of the Maru had been cornered in a warehouse - so now they could rally and methodically deal with them and the number of allies that had come to their aid.

But just as it seemed they were about to get a handle on things, a noise rose in the air above them: the sound of Gukko-Force horns.

Their call, carried on the wind, echoed in the glacial valley, making it hard to pinpoint its origin. It took another few moments, before the first of the village's occupiers spotted points of light  in the sky. "Incoming!" they called out. Heads turned, weapons raised skyward - and now they could see what their companions had spotted: Birds. Gukko. Kahu. More than they could count at a glance. Someone called out for spears and crossbows to move up. But before the followers could concentrate on the new threat, they were suddenly struck from the side with a hail of Kanoka and Madu.

Sisk pulled on Skyscratcher's reigns, and the bird came out of its dive, rising rapidly again, flanked by two more Kahu on either side. They pierced through a cloud before banking right again, joining up with more birds that were flying ahead. The opening move of their tactic had been a success.

They had split their assault force into smaller flights and then encircled the village, obscured by the clouds. When the signal had been given, the groups of birds would turn in, dive, wreak havoc on the followers, only to disappear into the clouds again and join the circle again. That way they could attack from multiple angles at once and remain unpredictable. 

"Good hit!" he called out to his backseater manning the disk launcher. "Good hit!" the other Matoran confirmed. Now Sisk really felt the rush of flying in a hot zone again. And it made him smile. Behind him, the backseater chuckled as he noticed the tamer had begun to hum a melody to himself.

Recommended Listening 

OOC: Sisk and the Gukko force have officially engaged the unwelcome guests of Ko-Koro.


 

 

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IC: The Mastermind/Ko-Koro

Lunefeld was steps away from the Warehouse when he heard the cries of the Legacy guards.

""Incoming!" " He looked up, ad saw a flight of Gukko riders, too coordinated to be anything other than the Le-Koro Gukko Force, soaring across the sky.

Then, from out of the corner of his eye, Lunefeld spotted, a second too slow, a hail of projectiles falling upon the Legacy army still out in the open. He immediately worked to twist the gravity fields of the volume around the projectiles to break apart their trajectory, but there were too many, and too fast.

"Take cover!" He called out, his eyes tracking the Gukko Riders that had come close enough to launch their volley. He fixed his vision on the nearest flight of riders pulling out of their dive and focused his powers on those riders, increasing the pull of gravity around them.

"Focus on them!" Lunefeld called out to the nearesy Legacy soldiers, some already chucking spears.

OOC: That's Sisk's group unless theyre already too far away

Edited by NorikSigma

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OOC I've been wanting to get this guy back in action—well, no time like the present...

IC

"Incoming!" 

Shouts steal my attention from my guard, and I look up to find the skies alive with birds and riders. They exercise guerrilla tactics, moving from cloud to cloud and using the storm for cover. I press my body against the side of the warehouse as a hail of projectiles rains down on the city. Only a few feet away, a disk strikes the wall in a shower of ice and dust; my head would put up less resistance. I snort, and my breath clouds the air as I swing my rifle around, the chamber already loaded.

A glance down the street shows no hostiles yet approaching. That may change as soon as I fire. I am aware of the door at my back—if Eisen falls, the Maru will take me by surprise. I am not a man given to anything resembling trust, but the respect I have for Eisen bears some resemblance. He is a variable in whose value I have some confidence: he felled a Maru, and has yet to disappoint Echelon. Both qualities lend some credence to his skill, so I will turn my back on the door.

I bring the scope to my eye and look for a rider. The Le-Korans move quickly and erratically, but they cannot outwit a storm. The wind and snow will be obeyed, and so there are some patterns they must inevitably follow. My finger on the trigger, I wait for the pattern to resolve, as it must. Every variable must be accounted for, and there it is——

I squeeze the trigger. A rider drops from his mount and enters freefall. I press my back against the wall and reload.

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IC [Sisk - Skies above Ko-Koro]:

Sisk noticed his Kahu's movements had become slightly sluggish. A quick glance around showed no injury or other cause, so somebody on the ground had to be doing something. telekinesis or gravity were the most likely candidates. He relayed the information to his backseater while beginning evasive maneuvers on their way back into the clouds. The gunner turned his disk-launcher around and fired another shot at the zone they had just struck, hopefully throwing off their attackers aim and concentration until the next run was lined up.  

A shot rang out and one of the other Kahu made a surprised roll, its rider suddenly no longer in their seat. Unfortunately for the Skakdi sniper, there were more than one flight attacking at a time. Lining up his shot had taken long enough for the next wave to begin their attack run, and as he turned to reload, another volley struck, this time from an opposite direction that rendered his cover much less effective.

 


 

 

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