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Ghosts of Bara Magna


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On 6/20/2023 at 7:57 AM, Toru Nui said:

IC: Xyde (Precipere, Guardhouse) - The Guest House

“Somok, I-” Xyde began as they absent-mindedly entered, only to notice the copious - and perhaps dangerous - level of outsiders in the room. “I see we have guests. To what do we owe the pleasure?” 

IC: Somok - Precipere Guardhouse

"Investigators from Vulcanus, on their way to find out what happened to Ferrum," he explained, turning towards the group of visitors. "This is Xyde, one of our most talented medical practitioners."

He looked back to Xyde, "They say Ferrum may have fallen to a plague. I won't order you to go with them. The decision is yours." 

@Toru Nui

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IC/ Skrall/ Bonehunter Stronghold

Skrall had followed skrall’s lead and disembarked the lead carriage, but on the opposite side, sword and shield at the ready. Thusly flanked, the spikit cart passed under the stronghold gate. She was curious what kind of welcome the bonehunters had in store for them. Mainly, she was concerned with the nasty possibilities and scanned the gate and ground nearby for any signs of traps: Buried nets, spike pits and whatever else came to mind.

As for the civil options for the encounter ahead…well that was Atakus’ business. He was Tirveus' Ordinarius, he had been assigned to ‘make the arrangements’. So he would have the dubious honor of doing the talking in order to sell one of their own into indentured servitude. It still didn’t sit right with her. Not enough to do or say as much, but the feeling was there, especially after hearing his account of events.

At least she was determined to see the once-skrall off well.
 

OOC: Hello there! @BULiK @a goose @skrall 

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IC: Skyra Daring - Celrys' Workshop, Tajun -

Skyra had moved before Celrys had even finished speaking to her, giving Del her shoulder to lean on. "It's alright...Del, I got you." Skyra wasn't sure whether or not to call them Del or Nemoni, so she simply stuck with the name Del had given her in the first place. That could come later. 

"Alright Del, let's follow Celrys...he's gonna help you get better." Skyra started to move forward with Del on her shoulder, taking it as slow as Del needed. Del was also kind of heavy, something which Skyra kept to herself for the moment. 

@a goose @Morgan Yu @Techn0geist

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IC: Maxas (Tajun, Celrys’ Workshop) - Modify and Sever

Outside the main Celtech building, Maxas collected himself. Technology in-and-of itself was not evil. But not only did arena matches now rely on whomever could afford the most expensive technological toys, Celrys himself, despite his grotesque nature, was just another cog in the machine that was the Tajun underworld. That, and the act of replacing your body parts with unliving contraptions by someone who most undoubtedly was not a legal medical practitioner was… disconcerting. Maxas kept having to discreetly see a physician to make sure no one had discretely cut out one of his organs or implanted some malevolent gizmo while he slept since the practice became more prevalent. A different physician each time, of course. Couldn’t afford to tip off Celrys that he was onto him.

He entered the building, and tried to make it seem like he would rather not be here. “I would like to browse your wares… if that’s… possible.” Was there a way to browse cyborg weaponry? He hoped that it didn’t involve ‘trying out’ the merchandise.

@a goose

 

IC: Lutenus (Outskirts of Atero, Training Ground) - Back! Back, I Say!

Lutenus re-engages the logic machine in his brain - but too late to do anything about the spear being swiped at his leg. The machine refused to let him do anything other than emit a growl of pain, before swinging the axe again - more to drive Lorqua back than actually harm her.

@oncertainty @Techn0geist

 

IC: Taldrix (Bone Hunter Stronghold, Outside Somnii’s Cell) - Symptomatic

“Symptoms… dreamless self-aware sleep… lethargy… paranoia, violent tendencies…” Taldrix finished scribbling down. “That’s not good - three out of four can already be found here.” She commented, letting Somnii hear her contempt for her fellow Gatherer out loud.

“So, one or two weeks from infection to death, though longer cases are known… infected enters a comatose state, from which death soon follows. I assume you’ve only recently been infected, due to your lack of symptoms, beyond the dreamless sleep you described, which cannot be observed from the outside.”

@a goose

 

IC: Xyde (Precipere, Guardhouse) - Ah, Fresh Victims!

“I would like nothing more, in case the Iron Tribe needs medical assistance, but…” Xyde then turns to the investigation team. “I don’t think it’s my call to make. Would you allow me to accompany you to Ferrum? You understand that we’re not the bogeymen Vulcanus makes us out to be. I’m hardly going to steal your organs while you sleep like they do in Tajun, so I’ve heard.”

@Nato G @a goose @Burnmad @~Xemnas~ @oncertainty

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IC: Somnii (Bone Hunter Stronghold; Somnii's Cell)

Somnii's disgust towards the Bone Hunter only grew, forced to listen as she matter-of-factly brushed off the plague that had devastated her people. Some dark facet of her wished, in that moment, that she could infect her captor, and watch her sneering disregard turn to terror. She knew, though, that that wasn't her; just a result of her exhaustion and stress. If she could hold back her disdain for a putrid little worm like Metus, she could handle this no-name slaver. She worried for a moment that such thoughts might be symptoms of her worsening condition, before reassuring herself that she was just growing too tired to care about sympathising with people who didn't deserve it. Trying not to think unkind thoughts about slavers was a pointless waste of energy she didn't have. Better just to hold her tongue.

"Last night was my fourth dreamless sleep, and I'm still going strong. So, I wouldn't get your hopes up about getting rid of me anytime too soon." The Bone Hunter didn't need to know about her blackout. For now, Somnii herself was still hoping it was a freak occurrence, and not a sign that she was deteriorating.

OOC: @Toru Nui

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IC: Karak - Celtech 

My head swims as I try to get my head together - none of this should be my concern, so why allow it to trouble me? I lean myself against the wall in the hallway, breathing in the workshop's filtered and tampered air. The company of the Southerners has outstayed its welcome. I feel much more suited to my own.

But as my eyes scan over to the exit by the front desk, a man - one of the shorter Agori - locks my gaze in place. I do not hear what he says to the woman out front but his face strikes one of the wind chimes in my flow of memory. Had he been one of the many in the ocean of people arriving in the village? The prospect seems unlikely. None of them had seemed to have caught my eye.

I watch him from the hallway. If Del is attracting prying eyes again, I would certainly be better parting ways with my companions in the office.

OOC: @Toru Nui @a goose

Edited by Morgan Yu
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IC: Del - Celrys's Workshop, Tajun

The pair stumbled towards the surgery, Del indeed weighing heavy on Skyra's shoulders; muscularly the Glatorian was absolutely fine but the mind, the willpower to move, could scarcely be engaged without risking further damage. The Ferrumite's cooling helmet lay abandoned on the office floor.

Passing the threshold, the patient chair was regarded by Del with something like curiosity and nothing like recognition.

"He'sss gonna hhhelp you... get betterrr..." The Glatorian made another dangerous push towards original thought, risked another heat spike. "Celllrys help Delll I get better... Skyrrra Daring helppp Celrysss... help Del Iii..."

<<C-C-C-Caution: scaling therm-m-mal throttling. B-B-Brace.>>

The straw that broke the Sand Stalker's back. Del's legs collapsed out from under them, sending them falling forward, shoulder-checking the chair and wheeling to land flat on their back with a thud that could surely be heard from the reception.

In their stunned delirium, the words needed to finish their thought floated errant to the surface; a lesson in manners from a kind, if irritated green Agori.

"Thank you..."

 

OOC: @Snelly @a goose @Morgan Yu

Edited by Techn0geist
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IC: Lorqua - Training Ground, Outskirts of Atero

Lutenus' swing had the intended effect. Lorqua backpedaled into the centre of the grounds, holding a javelin outstretched before her, warding Lutenus off with its point. Then she stood for a moment, realization that she had probably done exactly what he wanted visible on her face.

"Don't play with me here, let's finish this," she snarled.

At once, she extended her arm to gain some leverage, and lobbed her javelin towards Lutenus' arm.

OOC: @Toru Nui @Techn0geist

 

IC: Escus - Precipere

Escus smirked at the Agori medic's comment, mimed looking down at the colours of his own armour, then looked back at the Agori.

"Should watch what you say, friend. Tajun has joined with Vulcanus in this endeavour. Might get to test that reputation for yourself," he said. Inclining his head towards Tueris, he remarked, "If we get a vote, I've made my view clear. Guile may already be lost to us, perhaps numbers will do the trick."

OOC: @a goose @Toru Nui @Nato G @Burnmad @~Xemnas~

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IC: Cacia (NPC; CelTech reception, Tajun)

Cacia forced a pleasant smile to her face as yet another customer arrived without an appointment. She had foolishly hoped that, this close to the Grand Tournament, there would be a lull in activity – there often was, in that gap where the year's competitors had their affairs in order and audiences had yet to be inspired by the extensive free advertisement the games represented for the company. Apparently, today would be an exception.

"Certainly. If you can give me some idea of what you're interested in, I can-"

She paused and looked away, as if distracted. "Right away, sir."

Cacia turned her attention back to the customer, producing from behind the desk a metal tablet, a small gear protruding from its base. It had a glass screen backed with green, upon which a rough black image of a device was displayed, accompanied by explanatory text. "If you turn the dial on the bottom, it will allow you to browse our catalogue of standard enhancements. If you have any questions, or you're interested in something more personalised, I'll be back with you in just a moment. Feel free to take a seat in the meantime."

With that, she turned again to the contraption under her desk, filling another glass of water and hurriedly making her way over to the hallway into which Karak had emerged.

OOC: @Toru Nui @Morgan Yu

IC: Celrys (His office, Tajun)

"Get them up onto the chair!"

For the first time in Skyra's experience, there was a palpable anxiety to Celrys' voice, bordering on panic. He shut the metal cabinet and rushed over to Del, holding a bag of what appeared to be… ice?

It was a sight that was beyond uncommon in the Wastelands; the only place to see it in person was in the White Quartz or Black Spike mountains. And here Celrys was, pressing it to Del's forehead.

"This should hopefully get their temperature under control," he offered in explanation, breathing a sigh of relief as he checked Del for signs of injury. "No obvious damage… good, that's good."

OOC: @Techn0geist @Snelly

IC: Wolf (Atero; Red Star Room)

Wolf nodded. "A Kaxium. Still, we'll have to travel the last stretch on foot."

OOC: @Wotz

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IC: Kirbraz (Staff NPC; The Shadiest Spot on Bara Magna)

In the hours after his plan had entirely collapsed, Kirbraz had a great deal of time to think. He thought about how Scodonius had entirely defied his expectations by stealing the Tajun election from him; he thought about how he should have realised that he had not accomplished that feat alone. Most of all, he thought about how his latest scheme had relied upon the idea that he and Scodonius were, effectively, interchangeable.

It was a premise which had guided many of his plans, not least that fateful election. He and his arena partner would 'encourage' the other candidates to withdraw, and whoever won would lead Tajun, with the other in charge of its underworld. Naturally, he had always intended to betray Scodonius; after all, the man had always been too power-hungry for his own good. He wouldn't be satisfied with anything short of total control, which meant that he would inevitably have used his position to usurp Kirbraz. It was on that basis that Kirbraz had secretly offered leadership of Tajun's criminal element to the far more malleable Berix (and Scodonius, ever a font of originality, had done the same). But all of it had ultimately hinged on the fact that Scodonius wasn't smart enough to overcome the odds Kirbraz had stacked against him. Kirbraz had failed to consider how ruthlessness and short-sighted greed could do what brains could not.

It was now apparent to him that, though their late-night rendezvous (rendezvi? rendezvouses?) were a recent development, Scodonius and his secret friend had been working together for far longer. But it all still begged the question: why Scodonius?

The most obvious answer was that rigging the election left him immediately indebted. It was efficient, but it was also a great deal of effort, and risked exposing his benefactor's interest in Tajun politics. There were doubtless safer, and less cumbersome, ways to have left Kirbraz similarly indebted. There could only be one conclusion: it was not for Scodonius' benefit alone. For whatever reason, the Benefactor needed Scodonius in power. So, again, Kirbraz had to ask himself why?

Scodonius was stupid, petty, and short-sighted. So, too, was Kirbraz. He could never have admitted it before, but here, in the final hours of his short and wasted life, he had achieved a clarity heretofore unknown to him; the only real difference between him and Scodonius was that he asked more questions.

That was it, then. That was why Scodonius was chosen over him. That was why he was going to die. Kirbraz would have realised the sheer lengths to which the Benefactor was going to keep his interest in Tajun a secret could only mean that he knew something about Tajun that no one else did.

That was the real, truly frustrating irony of it all: that Kirbraz didn't even understand the conspiracy that he would be killed to protect. With the effort to which the Benefactor had gone, and his newfound self-comprehension, Kirbraz couldn't help but doubt that he would ever have worked it out, even if he did have more time. The thought gave him pause.

If he couldn't have figured it out anyway, then why go to the effort of empowering Scodonius?

Kirbraz hadn't been overlooked because he would discover the Benefactor's true motivations – he had been overlooked because his investigations would have tipped off someone who could. And not only that, but the fact that his life was in danger meant that he already knew enough to set them on the right path. Therefore – even with blackmail now off the table – his information still had value. Value enough to be exchanged for protection.

Right now, all of the most powerful people in the Wastelands were in Tajun, gathered for the exhibition match. All but one – naturally, the only one he could trust. Raanu.

If he was going to survive the night, Kirbraz would need to find a ride to Vulcanus.

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IC: Maxas (Tajun, Celrys’ Workshop) - Hopeless With Tech

Oh no it was one of them from the inn - don’t make eye contact. Be calm. Breathe. Breathe normally. That will make you calm.

What was this… device? Maxas grabbed a seat as suggested, and turned the dial…

@Morgan Yu @a goose

 

IC: Lutenus (Outskirts of Atero, Training Ground) - Clash Dialogue

Discarding his empty Thornax Launcher, Lutenus moved to grab the main body of Lorqua’s javelin with his spare hand, and tried to overpower Lorqua. You asked for it.

@oncertainty @Techn0geist

 

IC: Taldrix (Bone Hunter Stronghold, Outside Somnii’s Cell) - J’accuse

Oh great. There’d be more of this. Nothing could ever be painless, could it? Certainly not what she was about to ask.

“Perhaps this is mere psychological projection, but I personally find it rather odd that you - the leader of your tribe - are the apparent sole survivor of this incident, or at least the only one to have fled your village. Do you have any explanation for this?”

To be honest, this… this dreamless plague, it sounded a little far-fetched. But if Taldrix was willing to accept the possibility that her boss was a Great Being, this couldn’t be dismissed entirely out of hand.

@a goose

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IC: Somnii (Bone Hunter Stronghold; Somnii's Cell)

Somnii took in a deep breath and glanced around her cell, deciding how much she was willing to say.

"Our telegraphy station was… malfunctioning. We couldn't get word in or out of the village, and the sick were quarantined. We tried to send people out via the regular route, but-" She paused, carefully considering her next words. "It proved unfeasible. I knew I was taking a big risk by leaving Ferrum leaderless, but I couldn't risk anyone else's life again. That's why I took it into my own hands to try and get help."

OOC: @Toru Nui

Edited by a goose
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IC: Jeizmel, Streets of Atero

"Ooooh."

Her eyes sparkled at the sight of the beautiful objects on display. Their delicate details, the way they gleamed as the overhead sun caught them... all at once she was transported back to that moment all those years ago, when she had first discovered just how deeply crystals of ice in their very purest form touched her soul. Every piece of the jewellery seemed to call her back to that moment, reminding her of the thing she thought so important in life...

If she hadn't been convinced before, she knew now that she had to get one of them for herself. Blue gaze scanned over the items, searching for the perfect one that really called to her, and it took very little time for her to make her choice.

"How much would you ask for that bracelet?"

The one she pointed at was a good thickness - enough so that she'd notice it every time she looked at her arm, not so much as to get in her way while doing tasks - and glinted sharply just like the most freshly-formed icicles. It would be perfect--

Just supposing she could afford it, that was.

@Daniel the Finlander @Toru Nui

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IC: Xani (Streets of Atero)

Xani smiled when Vraek pointed at a necklace and Jeizmel asked about the bracelet. It wasn't a wide smile, as they were far from being her most elaborate or laborious creations and thus she couldn't charge too much for them, but money was money. She did think about the fact that a single slave was worth about a dozen or more of her necklaces or bracelets.

She offered the necklace to Vraek and the bracelet to Jeizmel. Both of them had small paper price tags attached to them. "Wonderful choices! Of course, I accept payment in any currency you have. I'm sure you two find the prices to be reasonable." They were rather expensive trinkets.

OOC: what currencies are even used in bara magna coz i forgor and cant find any info so i improvised
@Toru Nui@That Matoran with a Vahi

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IC: Karak - Celtech

My gaze remains unbroken - eyes narrowed to slits.

OOC: @Toru Nui

IC: Vitrum - ???

The quietest, faintest of clicks in the shadows. Vitrum's ears are the only ones capable of hearing such noise. Such discretion is intentional.

Her mark pottered and roamed the streets not more than fifty feet away. He's uneasy but not vigilant. Her employer had left this undertaking too late in her book - flight risk should never be a factor in matters like this. 

A finger lightly pangs the rope of the crossbow. Red eyes disappear into the shade. 

OOC: @a goose

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“No. Sorry, kid, that’s the one thing you can never do.”

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IC: Skyra Daring - Celrys' Workshop, Tajun -

"F###!" Skyra, normally well balanced, had taken a tumble when Del had suddenly fallen. Though unlike Del, Skyra practically leaped back to her feet, already starting to help Del back up even as Celrys yelled at her to get them onto the chair. Skyra was more lean and agile than strong, but she had enough adrenaline now that she was able to get Del onto the chair rather quickly. She hadn't expected to play nurse today but here she was. 

She stepped back a bit as Celrys put the ice on Del's head. She was too worried about them to say her usual banter and quips. 

"Del? Can you hear me? Stay with us, if you see a light don't follow it!" Even with Celrys' assurance of no obvious damage she was still concerned. 

@a goose @Morgan Yu @Techn0geist

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IC: Wolf (Atero; Outside the Red Star Inn)

“I know the place. I’ll get my Kaxium, meet you there.”

It was, in her traditional style, not much in the way of a farewell, though it hardly needed to be. It would be but a matter of minutes before she and Dune Wolf were reunited; all the same, it gave her time to think.

Bringing outsiders into the Serrate, though not unheard of, was highly unusual. It would take some effort to convince the others – Bear, in particular. Moth, she reckoned, would see what she had seen: there was something about this Dune Wolf. His moniker, his history with the Bone Hunters... his loneliness. He was a man without a tribe, and yet one who had so much in common with her people. Their encounter could only have been fated.

The Serrata were dying. This might not be their last generation, but it was certainly close to it. Moth had sent her, as he sent the others, to bring back the resources their clan required to survive; perhaps that needn’t only mean food, water, and Denarii. Perhaps what they needed most of all were numbers.

OOC: @Wotz

IC: Cacia (NPC; CelTech reception, Tajun)

Cacia seemed almost not to notice Karak, brushing quickly past him.

OOC: @Morgan Yu

IC: CelTech Device (CelTech reception, Tajun)

As Maxas turned the dial, the image and text changed, now displaying and describing a different device (still in the same block-black format, against the same green background).

OOC: @Toru Nui

IC: Celrys (His office, Tajun)

"No need to worry, they’ll be quite alright. I think. I’m almost certain-” Celrys cut himself off as Cacia came through the door. “Ah- Skyra, could you take over ice-pressing duty here?”

Once he was removed from Del, he walked over to his assistant, who was staring at her surroundings with no small amount of wonderment. She seemed surprised when he took the glass of water from her hand, snapping her back to reality. “Thank you, Cacia. We should be fine here, you may return to the desk.”

She nodded wordlessly, and shot only a curious glance at Skyra and Del before turning on her heels and leaving.

OOC: @Techn0geist @Snelly

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IC: Somok - Precipere

While the others spoke with Xyde, Somok was approached by one of the guards he'd dispatched earlier. After a few moments of whispered conversation, the elder Agori turned towards the group of visitors, clearing his throat to get their attention.

"I've just been informed that our scout Salwa is unwell, and won't be able to join us. apologise-" the word was spoken as if the minor admission of weakness physically pained him,"-for holding up your mission." 

@a goose @Toru Nui @Nato G @Burnmad @~Xemnas~ @oncertainty

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Embers - a new Bionicle Epic - Coming 2024 

Class Is Out - A Farewell To Corpus Rahkshi - Chapters/Review

BZPRPG Characters - Minnorak, Kain, T'harrak, Savis, Vazaria, Lash

BZPRPG Mercenary Group - The Outsiders - Description - History - Base

Ghosts Of Bara Magna - Ash Tribe - Precipere - Kehla, Somok, Skrall, Gayle, Avinus, Zha'ar

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IC: Dune Wolf (Atero)

“I know the place. I’ll get my Kaxium, meet you there.” And she was gone.

It was only once he was alone that Dune Wolf noticed the walls of his throat sticking together. He also noticed his head was throbbing and his vision narrow. He cursed Blackthorn Gin silently and spat dry air in disgust.

The way to the lot consisted of a tangled maze of alleyways that embedded in a densely packed residential quarter. Washing lines zig-zagged above the dark figure as he side-stepped oggling children and the suspicious glares of housewives. What drew attention to him more than his piercings and tattoos was his lethargic gait; the locals knew a junkie's stupor when they saw it. Dune himself was astonished by the potency of his hangover. Surely this was not just the work of alcohol...?

He shuddered with surprise as a figure stepped into his path, arms outstretched. His vision came to focus on a blue-skinned woman holding out a bowl of water. There was a moment of confusion, as he tried to move aside so the woman could pass, but she remained stood where she was, gesturing with her eyes to the water. Oddly, she did not speak. Dune Wolf bent down a little and took a sip. Then another. Then he took the bowl and poured it all into his mouth.

Instantly he felt the water wash through his head and throat, its soothing coolness spreading and rejuvenating him.

His eyes shifted sheepishly from the empty bowl to the Tajunite woman, ashamed by his indulgence. But she merely smiled and stepped aside, allowing him to pass. Dune could feel the onlookers watching him from all directions as he slipped past the woman - croaking a 'thank you' - and vanished on his way.

(Kagnii's Used Wheels)

The 'lot', as Dune Wolf had called it, was a small fenced enclosure filled with an assortment of haggard-looking vehicles.

The lot's owner, Kagnii, was squatting atop a particularly ancient Thornatus with a blow torch when he saw the Glatorian approaching. The Agori sighed and lifted his mask. "I should've said when you came by yesterday - no takebacks!"

"What?"

"Don't play dumb. You sold me your bike and now you've changed your mind. So let me make it easy for you: Alll transactions are final!"

"I didn't sell you my bike..." Dune's brow furrowed. Had he...?

"What, you thought this was just somewhere to park?!" Kagnii's mouth fell open in disbelief. "You rode in here. I gave you money. Yet you think I was providing you a service?"

"No, I sold you that scrap. That's what the money was for."

"The scrap? That scrap wasn't worth jack. You sold me the bike."

"I told you--"

"ALL TRANSACTIONS ARE FINA--"

Dune Wolf snatched the Agori by the collar and pulled him fully off the Thornatus, bringing them eye-to-eye. "I'm twice your size. You really sure you wanna mess with me?"

"No... But they will!"

Suddenly, a host of ghoulish Iconosians began to emerge from the ruined vehicles. Their armour and weapons were visibly salvaged from dead warriors - a green pauldron here, a steel boot there - while their faces and limbs were deformed, emmaciated from decades of addiction. What Kagnii was paying them in Dune Wolf couldn't tell, but there was no time now to dwell on such things. The thugs were nearly upon him.

Dune dropped the Agori and let him scurry off into the shade. A few tense seconds passed, broken by the jingle of chains as the desert dweller prepared his only weapon. Then he was no longer Dune Wolf the lonely desert dweller, but Chains, the murderous avenger.

IC: Chains

From the far left, one of the thugs stupidly charged, screaming at the top of his lungs. With a flash of singing chains he was struck down, his bloody face caked in sand. Then he was struck again, and again, and again until he stopped squirming and lay still.

His comrades looked on in silence. Evidently the rest of them knew better than to attack one at a time. Quickly and calmly they filled the space surrounding the outlander. He remained perfectly still, eyes and ears trained.

A faint patter of feet approached from behind, accompanied by the whistle of a stolen blade. Chains whirled around, veering out of the blade's path just in time and simultaneously coiling a chain around the thug and his garish weapon.

Just before turning, he had caught a glimpse of the two in front beginning to move in unison. So he had some warning for the momentary rustle of armour as these two came at him from either side, swinging axes at his legs and head. The one aimed at his head he caught, but received a gash in his leg as he failed to shift his position far enough. Ignoring the pain, he yanked down on the axe and freed it from the addict's feeble grip, then, using the still-enchained blade-wielder as a pivot, rotated at speed and embedded the one axe in the other's skull, splitting their rusted helmet in two. Heavy blood spat from the wound as the thug fell to the sand, their jaw hanging open in shock.

Immediately, Chains kicked back at the disarmed axe-wielder. Hearing him crash to the ground, he finally yanked on the chain, sending the blade-wielder spinning out of control. Before the thug could regain his balance, the chain's tip had snapped into his nostrils, pushing part of his skull back into his brain and killing him instantly.

The second axe-wielder scrambled desperately for escape, but had barely moved at all when he felt sun-kissed metal around his neck, squeezing tighter, tigher, tighter untill--

SNAP

Chains pulled the chain, link by link, from the man's limp corpse.

He looked around. The thugs still surrounded him. In fact, there were more of them now than before. Then, feeling the blood gushing down his leg, head spinning, looking at the blank expressions all around the lot, it dawned on him.

He could not survive this.

OOC: @a goose

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IC: Wolf (Atero; Kagnii’s Used Wheels)

“W-wait!”

The din of the fight had rendered Wolf’s approach practically inaudible, but in the momentary calm Kagnii’s pleading could be heard loud and clear. All eyes turned to the Agori and the Glatorian who stood behind him, pressing the wicked blade that had sprouted from her wrist against his throat.

“Please, explain to your men how you will pay them if you are dead.”

OOC: @Wotz

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IC: Wolf (Atero; Kagnii’s Used Wheels)

Wolf kicked Kagnii's knees out from under him, then stomped down for good measure. The crunch was loud enough that even the legitimate businessman's screaming couldn't drown it out.

"The safe is in the back office; combination two left, nine right, one. It's where he keeps the Spice."

OOC: @Wotz

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IC: Dune Wolf (Atero; Kagnii's Used Wheels)

There was a few moments of silence as all present exchanged various glances, none sure quite what to do first. In the tension, Dune caught eyes with Kagnii, and realised. Keys.

"Aw, hеll."

All at once, about fifteen Iconosian thugs turned and sprinted in the same direction, and Dune Wolf was among them. He turned on his heel and leapt atop the Thornatus, darting from vehicle to vehicle in the hopes of overtaking the throng. But he realised rapidly that there was no need to outrun them.

They began by shoving each other aside. Then they moved on to tripping up their compatriots in an attempt to slow them down. Before long all illusions of unity in the group had dissolved. As if realising suddenly that each and every one of them was carrying a deadly weapon, the thugs proceeded to kill each other remarkably quickly. Their savagery was astounding; within two minutes the crowd of rabid addicts had become a desecrated array of reaking corpses, the foul chemicals in their guts steaming in the hot sun.

Dune hopped down from the back of a Baranus and stepped over the ruined corpses surrounding the office. Could they all have died? Logically there should be at least one to--

"Stay back!"

An uncharacteristically large Iconosian appeared in the doorway. Most of his armour had been stripped off. One arm was missing. His icy blue skin was covered in lacerations new and old. And in his eyes was the savage desperation of an addict in need of a fix. "Don't come any closer!"

Dune Wolf lifted his empty hands. Privately he was calculating how many milliseconds it would take for him to draw one of his chains from this position.

"I won't let you have it!"

"I--" Dune sighed. "Look, I don't care about your stupid Spice."

"It's mine!"

"Fine by me."

"..."

"Get out of the way. I need my keys."

"It's mine!"

"Great Beings..."

A second later, Dune's chains cracked like whips on each of the junkie's legs, shattering his kneecaps. The outlander stepped over the screaming shell and retrieved his keys from the safe. With one last look at the Iconosion, who still lay clutching the bag of spice, he spat, lobbed a hunk of fireroot between his gums, and began slowly limping back through the lot.

 

OOC: @a goose

Edited by Wotz
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IC: Wolf (Atero; Kagnii’s Used Wheels)

While her companion had set about collecting his keys, Wolf left the whimpering mess of ****** and broken bones before her to lick his wounds. By the time Dune Wolf re-emerged, there was a sand-coloured (and sand-worn) Kaxium idling in the lot, the Serrat atop it apparently unbothered by the carnage.

"It seems you have a talent for making friends."

OOC: @Wotz

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IC: Dune Wolf (Atero; Kagnii's Used Wheels)

"I'm the sociable type," Dune retorted. He twirled the key round his fingers as he approached his Kaxium. "Allow me to introduce you: this--" He inserted the uniquely-shaped object into its corresponding hole, and the engine exploded into life, flames sputtering from numerous exhaust pipes around the vehicle's rear.

"...this is Hahli."

He climbed aboard, smiling with satisfaction. "And it looks like our slimy friend over there refilled my baby." He raised his head to look over Wolf's shoulder. "Hey! Looks like I could rely on you for something after all!"

Kagnii cowered away. Clearly he was praying for the wolves to leave, and Dune was happy to oblige.

"Lead the way, Serrat. Let's burn rubber."

OOC: @a goose

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IC: Wolf (Atero; Kagnii’s Used Wheels)

"You named your bike." It was an observation, not a question; after taking the necessary time to process that information, she revved her engine, pausing only to consider Kagnii. He would not soon forget this indignity, but he was small-time, unconnected. Without his Spice or his goons, he would have great difficulty making trouble for them in the future.

Her concerns satisfied, she turned to her fellow Wolf.

"Let's ride."

OOC: @Wotz

Edited by a goose

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IC: Maxas (Tajun, Celrys’ Workshop) - User Error

What was this… devil box? Maxas desperately tries to make sense of the technology laid before him while also trying to not seem suspicious and also trying to avoid the Glatorian of indeterminate village’s gaze.

@a goose @Morgan Yu

 

IC: Vraek (Streets of Atero, Near the City Gates) - You Will Pay for This

Vraek handed Xani the requested sum. “Yes. Unlike some in Iconox, I will pay for goods and services rendered.” Of course, this is a barb at Metus and his administration, not necessarily at anyone present.

@Daniel the Finlander @That Matoran with a Vahi

 

IC: Taldrix (Bone Hunter Stronghold, Outside Somnii’s Cell) - Getting Our Story Straight

“I see.” She wasn’t sure how much she believed the item’s story, but it was the story they were going with. “That’s all for now, I think. Unless there’s anything else you’d like to share?” Taldrix steeled herself for the possibility of childish nonsense being spewed at her.

@a goose

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IC: Somnii (Bone Hunter Stronghold; Somnii's Cell)

"Nope – that's all you get. For now." There was steel behind her eyes, the best show of confidence she could muster. For the time being, it would have to be enough.

OOC: @Toru Nui

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IC: Dune Wolf (Creep Canyon)

The two Kaxiums tore away across the sand, kicking up beige clouds in their wake. They left Atero to the south-east and descended into Creep Canyon. This was territory unfamiliar to Dune Wolf, who had previously dwelt primarily in the Dunes of Treason to the west. The air was slightly cooler here, but the high rock walls that surrounded the pair had a foreboding look about them.

Far ahead, a group of tiny black figures were visible, some mounted, some not. Their mounts, he couldn't be sure, but they looked like... Rock Steeds.

He and Wolf exchanged a glance. He signalled for them to slow down.

OOC: @a goose

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IC: Wolf (Creep Canyons)

As the pair approached, the figures in the distance grew clearer, confirming their fears. Bone Hunters – seven in total, three of them atop Rock Steeds, though neither of the Wolves had seen their like before. At first they simply appeared to have unusual colouration, their scales an oddly metallic hue; on closer inspection, the truth was significantly more troubling.

All three Rock Steeds had been outfitted with cybernetic enhancements. Black wires and silver pistons had been woven into the muscles of their legs, their feet almost entirely replaced with brutal metal talons. One of the three was even more extensively modified, armoured plating grafted to so much of its skin that it looked almost like an automaton, only its underside still exposed. It was this silver steed that led the pack, and where they walked the sand seemed to shimmer beneath their feet.

IC: Xoros (NPC; Creep Canyons)

Riding the metal monstrosity was a vicious-looking Hunter, tall and broad enough to have passed for a Skrall. It was his colours that made it clear he wasn't, black and grey, his armour decorated with bone and feather. He carried a strange spear in one hand, its coiled wires and strange assembly similar in style to the cybernetics of his steed. Two of the Bone Hunters who were on foot carried similar weapons, though only the rider's was adorned with colourful feathers and the skull of a Vorox. The others carried knives, shortswords, and Thornax launchers.

The rider's silver steed, his armour, his spear – all were symbols of his station. He was one of the faithful, a loyal follower of Crucius and the Ghost that commanded him. He was Xoros, Zeskbane; his conquests were written in Tribal blood.

And he was itching for some action.

OOC: @Wotz

Edited by a goose
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IC: Wolf (Creep Canyons)

"I had heard rumours, but… this is something else entirely." The Bone Hunters' new leader was not to be trifled with, it seemed. Wolf glared at the party with a renewed intensity.

"The pack leader – he's wearing trophies. Sand Tribe bones." The disgust in her tone was palpable, the first time her companion had heard any emotion seep into her voice. "We should teach them how it feels to be hunted for sport."

OOC: @Wotz

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IC: Dune Wolf (Creep Canyons)

Dune was momentarily taken aback. Until now Wolf had seemed stoic, cold even. Now there was a sort of profound empathy about her that the desert-dweller had not expected to see. "Damn straight" he said eventually. "Let's kill these bastards."

Then they were on the move again, roaring down the canyon towards the party of Bone Hunters.

OOC: @a goose

Edited by Wotz
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IC: Del - Celrys's Workshop, Tajun

On 7/17/2023 at 3:15 PM, Snelly said:

"Del? Can you hear me? Stay with us, if you see a light don't follow it!"

The only light Del saw was the one shining down above the chair; they stared through it, through the surgery's ceiling and through Bara Magna's outer atmosphere. The ice to their head and Skyra's loud, unmistakable voice kept the Glatorian on the edge of lucidity, a gentle hand keeping them from sliding into deepest delirium.

<<...>>

<<...>>

It would be a time before the D3•L3•G8 implant reached safe operational temperatures again.

<<...>>

<<...>>

Del blinked in regular, automatic intervals.

<<...>>

<<...>>

"packed and all eyes turned in"

Del's lips just barely twitched.

"no one to see on the quay no one waving for me"

More an exhalation than a recitation.

"just the shoreline receding"

Not mimicry. Not a long-gone right-there voice quaking inside a splitting, aching head.

"ticket in my hand i'm thinking wish I didn't hand it in"

From somewhere basal. Somewhere melodic.

 

OOC: @a goose @Snelly

Edited by Techn0geist
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BZPRPG Profiles
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IC: Tueris (Staff NPC; The Precipice)

Tueris' posture relaxed ever so slightly, his relief at having to accept only one new addition to their party apparent to anyone watching closely enough. He turned to look at this 'Xyde,' sizing them up.

"We would be fools to turn away a good medic, plague or no. You are welcome to join us." His tone had markedly less warmth than his words, but there was no insincerity in his expression. "Still, I would urge you to consider your responsibilities here. What becomes of your patients, if you do not return home? Or your family?"

OOC: @Toru Nui @Nato G @oncertainty @Burnmad @~Xemnas~

Edited by a goose
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IC: Skyra Daring - Celrys' Workshop, Tajun -

Skyra took the ice pack without question, pressing it gently against Del's head as she leaned in towards them. "What?"

She leaned in a bit more, not close enough to touch Del but perhaps a bit too close. "Did you say something Del?" 

It was hard to notice, but she saw their lips twitching and the slightest of sounds coming out of them. It was hard to make out exactly what was being said but they were definitely words

"Holy fuck." Skyra said, somewhat quietly as she realized what she was hearing. "You're singing." 

@a goose @Techn0geist
 

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Skyra | Hakari | Oceanna | Taleen | Arisaka | Zanakra | Kaminari | Drakkar

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