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No title.
(2013-04-28 - 2013-06-07)
No description.
Katyna Katyna had returned to Traverse Town after a long absence, determined to help rebuild VALKYRIE and watch over her friends from afar. She had taken the brunt of Angantyr's fury when he turned against his friends and tried to kill them, and had spent several days recuperating at the hotel along with many other VALKYRI.

However, the ever impatient Kat had eventually stepped out of the hotel, seeking answers to her many questions. She's still pretty bandaged up although most of her wounds are carefully hidden under her armour. It was too soon to start practicing with her sword, or to even help rebuild VALKYRI until her deeper wounds had healed. What could she do in the meantime but wander around town, window shopping as she tried to figure out what to do about Maira?

Riku Not boring!

Falling into a fountain from a short distance!

SPLASH~ and yet again, convienience has overwritten common sense and the week of portal jumps going awry continues. Riku splutters and coughs out water, rubbing his face and pulling sodden hair out of his eyes. Blue eyes peer myopicly around.

"Uh.." he then spots Katyna and turns his head, coughing out water "Hi." he raises a hand in Katyna's direction.
Katyna Yaaaaawn, this is soooo boring..She rubs her eyes, determined to head to the outskirts and practice some swordplay - screw the injuries! - When suddenly she hears a loud splash! Peering at the nearby fountain, she sweatdrops when she sees a familiar figure staring back at her.

"Riku..? What the..?" She smirks as she steps towards him, offering a hand, "Heey! What are you doing in there? Need a hand?"
Riku "Watching the rest of my dignity wash away." Riku says with a laugh, allowing Katyna to help him out of the fountain.

He strips the duster and armored glove off with deft fingers, laying them out to dry on a nearby bench. "But I guess I'm getting what I deserve for taking so many shortcuts.

How about you Katyna? What have you been up to?"
Katyna "Hmmmm..." Ember eyes peer skywards, seeing the last trails of dark magic vanish in a wisp of smoke from the portal and she smirks. "Having trouble with your portals..?" she cant help but chuckle a bit at that. Truth be told, she hadn't used portals at all, not since the day she'd turned her back on the Shadow Lords for good..Had Riku done the same..? It had been so long ago since he'd shown the the darkness back in Hollow Bastion, she'd started to wonder what had become of him..

"Heh! You're all wet now..Here..." Pulling out her sword, it bursts into flames as she fans it near to his soaking clothes - but not too near to burn him. "How's that? Feels good huh?" She grins as she flops on the nearby bench, drawing a deep breath. "Hmmm...A lot of stuff has happened since then. Since that other life. You were right, Riku..I didnt fit in with the Shadow Lords. I...I hurt my friends, and now I just wanna make it up to them." There's a sadness in her red eyes as she lowers her sword, once his clothes are hopefully dry, before returning it to its sheath.

"It..Felt good, defending them against Garland and his minions, but now I'm kinda worried about Maira. After Garland ordered Angantyr to attack VALKYRI and was defeated by us..She still wants to save him from the darkness..." Kat bites her lip, looking thoughtful for a moment, before glancing back at him with a shrug and a roguish smile.

"...What about you? Hear you're a judge now!"
Riku "Yeah. I'm just glad that sword isn't pointed AT be this time." Riku smirks and shakes his head, rubbing arms and gingerly rubbing his shoulder. "I heard about that." he shakes his head.

"I've never been able to figure out Angantyr. Sometimes it seems like he wants freedom to live his own life. And other times.." he throws up a hand. "Other times he seems just like you were. A piece in a larger game." he snorts, sitting down on the bench. "Judge cadet actually. I won't be a full judge until I complete the materials for putting my armor together. It's.." he snorts.

"Quite a long list, but that's completely my own fault. I got uh.. a little carried away."
Katyna Katyna frowns at mention of Angantyr, staring down at her clenched hands for a moment. "One of the many times he tried to kill me, he told me that he was born with this darkness, and just wanted to find a way to control it. He saw Garland as his saviour I guess, because he taught him how to control that power, without letting it consume him." She smiles, "I guess that's why he hated me so much. I had a choice, but he didnt. Even so.."

Kat sighs, shaking her head, "He didn't want to leave Garland. I guess it was like a drug. Didnt really care or realize that he was using him in the end. But..Now I'm worried about Maira. I know she'll try and follow him to the depths of hell is possible, because she's convinced there's some good left in him, and because she obviously is in love with him, for reasons beyond my comprehension.."

Kat makes a face, "Even so...I did promise him I'd never wander off the path of light again. It's too bad he didn't practice what he preached though. I'm sure he could have taught me a lot of things..." Oh yeah, but there was that other secret plot that he and Ramza were planning against Archades, wasn't there? She..Didnt want to betray Ramza, however. Angan was another story though.

"Hmmm..Riku. Be careful. I think..Angan's plotting on stealing something from Archades.." Well, Ramza had given her that much information, but had left the rest in the dark. with any luck, Ramza wont get hurt because of it, but....She laughs nervously, shaking her head. "But..You never heard any of that from me, 'k?"

Phew, subject change is in order! She smiles when he speaks of his quest. "Ooh, you have to find your own materials? That sounds hard. How much stuff you have left? That'd be pretty awesome to see you dressed like a judge, I mean they're pretty intimidating to look at! I met a judge once, he was really nice.."
Riku Riku always knows Katyna is a good source of information. When she was a shadow lord, it was because she usually wanted to brag about what she had done. In this new incarnation, it was because she felt the need to say things.

So he listens and he /definitely/ listens when she drops a hint about Archades. He'll pass that along when he gets a moment free. "Well!" he says, going with the shift in the ever flowing river of conversation. "Actually.." he rubs the back of his head.

"..Actually quite a lot. I don't know. I just.. wanted to put the idea off as far as possible, I guess." he snorts. "I didn't want anything to go wrong." he shakes his head. "Nevermind. And they are intimidating. Especially if you see his honor Judge Magister Zargabaath fight. It's.. hard on the ego." he laughs at himself at that.

"And Ang's right. For once.. the light path gives much less of a headache." he looks faintly chagrined. "But it certainly wears out your shoes."
Katyna Kat still seems nervous. Is she betraying Ramza with this warning? But..She kinda liked Riku and didnt want him to get hurt in the cross fire. "Hey..Just dont tell 'em where you got the info, it was just a little birdie who said so.."

She nods. "Hmm, what kind of stuff do you have to find? Maybe I can help too.." She grins, "I guess right now, I just wanna help a lot of people, y'know, make up for all the stuff I did in the past."

Another nod as he speaks of how intimidating Judges can be. "Yeah, Judge Gabranth was pretty scary to watch in action when that thief tried to attack him. But I'm glad I got to help him, he was pretty cool. The bunny Judge Evja on the other hand.." Kat just scratches her head in confusion.

"I....Dont quite get him, he's kinda..Different from the others, and his logic's kinda messed up.Refusing to kill a zombie to save the life of a friend, yet seeming somewhat open to the idea of killing someone he was tricked to killing in a contract, if there was a chance he could come back as an undead.."

Of course Evja had contradicted himself a lot in that conversation, leaving Kat feeling more and more lost. Surely not all judges were so...Confusing?

"Eheh!" she laughs nervously, "But seriously, I'm sure you'd make a great judge. Living by the law rather than making up your own rules seems to make sense. But more than that, it takes a strong will and mind to uphold the law, right?" Eheheh, she'd make a lousy judge, given her propensity for thievery and trickery. Best keep her past life a secret though!

"I guess he taught me some things, even though he was so...Full of hatred while he did it. He didnt want to help me break away from the darkness, he just wanted to destroy me completely. But..In the end, I felt kinda sad for him. When he realized that he'd become a monster, I think there was an understanding between the two of us, even if it was brief. Maybe there is hope for him still, but if there is, it's somehow linked with Maira. I've never known someone with such a pure heart. Maybe that light is enough to overcome the darkness in him. That's also what seems to attract that creepy dark knight towards her.. Whatever happens though, I gotta protect Maira from doing something stupid!"

Still, Maira's strong will does make her smile. Afterall, she never lost hope in Katyna either.
Riku "Nah. It's.. sort of a thing I've got to do myself, but thank you Katyna." he searches and then pulls something from his back pocket. He shakes out the sodden paper and tosses it to the side.

"Ah well. I pretty much memorized the thing by now. Some cloth, some metal, some leather and some scales and crystals." he makes a motorboating sigh, stretching his hands up over his head and looking up at the sky.

"Places all over the World of Ruin. Some places I've barely even heard of. It actually..." he smiles. "It actually sound be sort of fun."
Katyna "Wow, they really make it tough, don't they?" She grins, "But kinda exciting too..You get to travel around the world, see new sights! I'm sure the finished product will be awesome! Ooh, is that why you're in Traverse? One of your ingredients is here in town?"

Oh yeah, there's that other thing, "Hmm, I guess it'll be harder with your portalling like that though..How come your aim was so off?"
Riku "I.. have no idea." Riku tells her honestly. "If I focus, it usually goes where I want. But.. for some reason this week." he shrugs.

"Its.. stopped working right. No matter what I seem to do. So. What are you doing here.. helping rebuild Valkyri HQ?"
Katyna Katyna hmms, "Maybe because it takes a focus on the darkness to control?" She smiles, "I havent even openned portals in a long time. Guess I'm too scared. I...Dont want to invite darkness back into my heart. Y'know, after I blatantly defied the shadow lords, I'm sure they'll track me down and punish me and maybe using darkness makes it easier to find me too.." Maybe that's why Ang was focusing primarily on killing Kat. Did Garland put him up to it?

She nods, "Yeah, I dunno if Avira will ever forgive me, but it's a start. Maybe someday she'll forgive me, but for now, I'll just watch over 'em from afar. With their headquarters totalled, I think they may be more vulnerable than before..I guess they've become a direct thorn in the side of the Shadow Lords.."

It's a scary thought. She still remembers Avira's bold claim to actively fight the Shadow Lords..
Riku Riku nods. "Yeah. I've pretty much been waiting for them to bring the hammer down on me as well but.. they've done nothing. It's very unsettling." he shrugs.

"I can't live my live in fear though. Things will happen when they will happen. I can only try to be ready."
Katyna Katyna nods. "You were..Their greatest warrior. I'm sure it'd come as a heavy loss, but.." She smiles, "You're strong, and you have the judges on your side. And..I'll watch out for you too so, no reason to worry, right?" She flashes a warm smile at that, although sighs for some reason..

Would there be people who would willingly protect her, should the time come? She had already betrayed Faruja, kinda, by protecting Ramza. And she had refused to raise her sword against the church to protect Ramza. As for VALKYRI, would they ever go out of their way to defend her, should the Shadow Lords come for her?

"Aahhh.." She laughs nervously and nods again, "You're right, cant live your life in fear, right? Gotta live life to the fullest, else you'll miss out on the good stuff.."

Kat sighs, resting a hand on the pommel of her sword. "I might have lost the power of the Shadow Lords, but..Maybe I'll find my own strength to defend myself. Turns out there are more secrets to this sword than I even knew.."
Riku Riku shakes her head. "No. That.. that was just the lie they fed me. What made me a warrior, and a person who protects others.. it has nothing to do with the darkness." he snorts.

"Besides. Don't say stuff like that. My head will swell up." The teenager reaches for his somewhat dryish duster and lays it over his lap. "Maybe that's where you always needed to start, Katyna. Build something from there. Try.." he raises a hand.

"Try.. to stick to your choices. I think that's the only problem I have with Jyellian Judges. They don't stick to their own stories."
Katyna Katyna nods. "Yeah, I guess so.." she shrugs, "Either way, I'm glad to see you too, got out of that terrible place. You seemed..Empty, back there. You seem way better now." she grins and nods.

"No worries! Let's not worry about that anymore. Time for a fresh start, right? I think my path is clearer now. I just want to follow my father's footsteps and be a true knight, fighting to help other people instead of trying to become powerful, and hurting people along the way."

Kat glances at her sword again, "It was a family heirloom, and I never really thought much about it, but it turns out the flame is stronger when my will is strong. My determination to protect others makes it more powerful. Too bad my crazy sister's after it too.."

She makes a face, arching a brow as he speaks of Judges and their stories. "Hmm what do you mean? I thought they had some kinda code, those judges. Didn't think they'd change their stories, although I hear there are different types of judges." Really she knows very little about judges in general, except that they like wearing a lot of armour.
Riku "Apparantly two types of judge. There are the ones that are around Archades and Rabanastre and those are Archadian Empire. Evja is a different order from a place called Jylland. Different rules. Same basic idea.." Riku rubs the back of his head. "I was.. sort of trying to be polite. Evja is.." he sighs.

"Frustrating. Much like you were from time to time." Riku rubs the back of his head. "But yeah... let's forget that place. That sword, and that path you want to walk. It seems like a good place to start."
Katyna Katyna nods. "Oh yeah, I remember Evja saying something like that. He really is kinda confusing. I guess maybe that's just what Jylland judges are like though." She chuckles, "Heh, so it's not just me..."

It's only when he mentions how he is like Katyna, that she makes a face, reaching over to try and swat him playfully on the side of the head. "Bah! But I guess you could be right..I was so obsessed with power back then. It took watching the people I cared about getting hurt to knock some sense into me. I guess it seemed like a good idea at the time though.."

She sighs and nods. "I had other reasons for staying there though, things that are hard to forget. Lord Fessner was like a father to me. Even though now I realized he just used me like everyone else. When you have no family, it's hard to let that go. But..Hati was also in a similar position. I guess in the end, everyone just wants a place to belong, right? So I'll just have to work hard for VALKYRI to accept me..."

"Did you ever find your missing friends?"
Riku Riku laughs and fails to fend off swipe. Aiie! BONK.

His eyes go a little distant and he nods ruefully. "Yeah. I found Sora, who.. being Sora, is pretty much cheerfully oblivious to most if not all of anything that's going on. As for Kairi... she's.. safe, I guess. But out of reach, right now."

he shrugs it off but his eyes remain a little sad. "Everybody uses everyone else, Katyna. But sometimes.. that isn't so bad. Being used to protect something. A place. An idea.. a person. To belong somewhere." he smiles. "That's not so bad at all."
Katyna "Ooh, Sora's your friend?" She grins and nods, "I met him, he's pretty cool..Member of the Shard Seekers, isn't he? Oh yeah..He wielded a keyblade, like that strange armour down in..." Kat shakes her head quickly trying not to think of the lingering Will in the heart of Manhattan..She can already remember the disturbed look on Riku's face at the time, and it's not a pleasant memory, somehow..

"So, he's a keyblade wielder. I guess he must be pretty special. I was a little..Jealous of that weapon myself, until I realized I had my own strengths..Maybe." She grins sheepishly. "You're right. People use people, maybe that's where the darkness draws its strength from...But I dont want to be used by anyone, anymore..Even so.."

Kat sighs as she leans back on the bench, peering up at the stars in the forever twilight sky, vaguely remembering that time they sat on the rooftop, staring at the same stars.."I kinda...Feel caught in the middle of the church and the heretics. I have friends in both, but I dont want to be used by either. I just want to help my friends..But that's difficult, without becoming someone's enemy."
Riku Riku looks faintly stricken at the memory and gives a painful nod. "Yeah.." he tries to keep an instant of resentment out of his voice, but it's a strain and he shifts the conversation quickly.

"Well. Sometimes that's the hardest thing to do. Everybody wants you to divvy up sides and choose. Maybe sometimes it's better to think things though or.. even make your own side to follow." He gets off the chair.

"I.. better start walking if I'm going to get anywhere. It was nice to talk to you Katyna."
Katyna Katyna nods. " I suppose you're right. I just hope I dont make the right decision. That's always the hardest part, y'know?" She does notice him anxious to get going however, and Kat also has stuff to do. "Yeah..It was good to see you too, Riku! Take care!"
Riku One way or another, Riku has just given into the concept of never knowing where he was going or where the portal would displace him to next. It was no longer exhausting but neither did it completely seem to be random.

Maybe it's like the boat. It takes him where he needs to be, not where he wants to go. Regardless there's always the temptation to try and make it work that one more time. It was such a useful tool, being able to be wherever he needed to go.

Annnnd again.. it dumps him out in the sky somewhere. Riku yelps and thumps down solidly on the roof of a building, sliding down the curve uncontrollably before his feet catch and he slides to a halt. He slowly stands up and is almost immediately knocked flat again by the feeling of immediate darkness. It hits harder than he thought he would and the aura leaves him momentarily breathless. The screams carry up to him as he looks down on the scene with a numbing horror.

He grits his teeth hard, something twinging inside him as the dark knight renches a heart from the body of the man who stood against them. "Hey!" he barks from the rooftop, anger slowly churning to life in his voice and his eyes tinging amber. "What the hell do you think your doing?! You ever thought about eating something lighter? Like.. I don't know.. /waffles/? Those at least don't come with a complete /asskicking/."

He jumps down from the rooftop, advancing through the crowd as he straightens from a crouch.
Riku Riku dives to one side as the tendril of darkness sears into him, picking him up and slamming him down right in front of the dark knight. The feeling of the darkness is somehow electric and so shocking that it knocks the wind out of him. He's not ready then for the blast of dark energy that comes latter and is knock backwards as he wrenches free and back onto his feet. Red flashes in front of his face and he suddenly can't breathe.

Eventually he regains his footing and closes his eyes, searching in vain for his abilities. It.. it wasn't there. It wasn't where he looked for it. He grits his teeth against the unnatural cold of the dark energy and threw himself forwards, having no regard for the people around him other than at the back of his mind regarding Ramza and nodding to them before lashing out at the dark knight. The Archadian steel is whipped from the sheath and brought down as hard as possible, cutting towards the collarbone of the dark knight and then slashing towards the waist and a final slash downwards aimed at the hip.

They are just muscle power and steel however and no power behind them except that.
Riku Dark magic and Holy magic do not mix well. Riku retreats from the slashing blade and rolling back onto his feet. He grits his teeth and blows air out of his mouth as he prepares himself.

But he's simply too slow as he flips backwards away from the gleaming crystal and it catches him. The crossing swords pin his leg for just long enough and then SLAM together. Everything is lost in a burning dark crystalline prison. Paralyzed and unable to move, unable to scream, Riku is only able to wait for the inevitable shattering strike.

So cold.

And then pain and darkness as the blade shatters the dark crystal and Riku goes flying limply to the ground. It's Ramza that comes to his aid but the holy magic enfolding him almost makes him scream for a moment, burning fiercely in the wake of so much darkness.

It's only after that second of pain does the magic heal and restore and he shakily gets back onto his feet again. The teenager looked lost and bewildered, trying to gather himself together and get his thoughts in order as his eyes roved the battlefield for the dark knight. He raises a hand to Ramza. "Thanks!" he calls out hoarsely, skin still burning and inner self roiling and in tatters from the lifeforce brutually wrenched away. Weak and almost shaking, Riku grits his teeth in confusion and anger.
Riku Riku looks up slowly at the sky as a roar splits the sky. He gasps in pain, almost dropping the blade as the massive rune forms on the ground from which darkness just pours. The rune /shatters/ and a wave of pain nearly knocks the teenager unconscious.

Blades of crimson descend on him and the others and he doesn't have any time to think anything except a moment of terrifying fear.

The arrogance and certainty has vanished. His powers had abandoned them. Not just in an amusing dislocation but now, truely when he had needed them. Needed them to protect himself and others from being scooped up and eaten like popcorn picked up from a street vendor. Without it, he wasn't strong enough. Without the darkness.. she was right. He was nothing.

Riku nearly succumbs to that thought, closing his eyes as he gives in to the inevitable. But another thought occurs to him as the crimson blade reaches out for him, so painfully close the darkness seemed to cut at him even before impact. He had never really /needed/ strength. It was something he had hoarded and pushed and collected and never really filled the aching void.

..that wasn't there anymore. He had never noticed, never understood.. and Riku brings up the blade to defend himself, reaching down.. and down.. and grasping, for an instant, the flash of twilight that surges across his closed eyes as he realizes the void was gone.

The crimson blade /explodes/ as Riku lashes out at it. It crashes into a barrier of dusk colored energy. It doesn't just explode. It just evaporates in streamers of red.

Riku slowly opens his eyes, calmly looking around, then his eyes lock on the dark knight. The Archadian Steel glimmers with that dusk colored aura as he slams the sword down through the air. A spear of twilight SEARS across the ground towards the dark knight, taking with it all of the energy. The teenager collapses on his hands and knees after it, sword clattering to the ground.
Riku Riku barely even notices the festive fireworks, which is a shame because they are quite pretty to look at. He slowly picks himself up and sheathes the blade in his hand.

The teenager looks around at the collection of adventurers, mercenaries, corporate suits with quirky miniboss squads and just shakes his head side to side, his expression completely dazed.

He looks towards Ramza for a moment and moves over to them. "..You alright?" he asks wearily, rubbing his aching head and blinking as if all of this (Including a fat rolling chocobo) might be a bad dream of some sort.
Riku Riku slowly takes a look around at the strange surroundings and shakes his head. He smiles sheepishly at Ramza, nodding to them and then slowly turning to watch this last drama play out.

The teenager staggers away, chasing after the little girl down the alleyway (as well as one really can chase at a stiff hobble) and disappears.

This scene contained 29 poses. The players who were present were: Riku, Katyna