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No title.
(2013-05-31 - 2013-05-31)
No description.
Illua Illua, the fearsome head of Khamja, has prepared a terrible end for Alma Hyral.

Kidnapped, abused and threatened, she has been put to death for refusing to join the criminal organization, who would have had her sacrifice her freedom and morals.

The only clue to her whereabouts was a fragmented message pointing people in the direction of Costa del Sol, but that- combined with some frantic searching- should point people in the direction of a small, ostensibly unused building on the outskirts of the holiday resort supposedly used for storing props and staging.

Inside, a complicated- probably /too/ complicated- series of machines and gewgaws are set up around a central device, with Illua and a female, skull-hat-wearing necromancer with big coke-bottle-bottom glasses in observation.

"The deathtrap is as follows!"

"You are tied at the ankles, knees, waist, chest, arms, shoulders and neck to a wooden plank, which is attached to a conveyor belt. The conveyor belt will take you past various metal horns of unknown but terrible purpose, plus my two Bangaa templars on either side of the belt. Then, you passes under a large basin suspended in the air- note a skull and crossbones, indicating it is filled with some horrible fluid?!
Then, you will pass her under a machine which is designed to envelop you and do something terrible to you, and then you will be winched up a slope and attached to a pole. The hatch on a huge vat will be opened, revealing a thick, viscous and foul-smelling concoction of black and brown chemicals. Alma, you will be dropped into this brew, where you will symbolically drown in the darkness- surely a horrible fate!"

Illua sits in a swivel chair and fans herself. "Alma Hyral! This is your last chance! Do you agree to renounce your past and join Khamja, or do you wish for the curtain to fall on your life?"
Alma Hyral You know, after spending two days in a cell, having suffered emotional and physical torture. Contemplating your impending death...

It really wasn't so terrifying once you actually arrived to the point of execution. After she'd gone through each of the four stages of grief, she'd gotten right to acceptance. The tears had been cried, the prayers had been said, the distant farewells had been made.. Now just came the moment of death.

She was led to the complicated death chamber, and the whole thing was described to her in detail.

And now her only thoughts were: Oh sweet Cosma, my death is going to be like a bad Ramuha spy movie to one of those ridiculous serial villain death traps!

Her next thought was: Well unlike said movies /noone/ is going to come rescue me.

She was suprisingly calm as she was bound to the machine, and she just turned to face Illua in the swivel chair. "Well at first I was going to say, no. But now, after you described that all to me... /Chaos/ no."

Chaos being her world's closest equivalency to cursing /hell/. Though it suprised her to say the word in that fashion. Might as well show some defiance before the end. As she then laid back, closed her eyes, and waited.
Annia Leradine Information gathering is usually something that Annia is good at. So its without too big of a surprise when she managed to figure out the way to that building. She heard that Alma had disapeared... and that did not please her. What's a bully to do when she loses her targets? Other than finding new ones to bully, but that's no good either. You grow attached in a mild-sadistic way to those you constantly push around. Really.

But sneaking through the area of the building, silent as a ninja (well she's a dancer, light footed), she finds the room with the big contraption. Its a good thing she called up for some of the others to jion in to help, because this seems... a bit complcated. Well, she can probably...

On that thought, she's already moving toward the two Bangaas. She's going to attempt to take those out, silently. A bit of a applied poison to her daggers should be enough to make them lose their minds and go unconcious for a while at least... Removing some of the difficulty of the rescue, one piece at a time.
Illua "Hmmf. If you must die, you will encounter darkness as a bride, and hug it in thy arms. Measure for Measure, act 3."

Illua pauses.


And off it goes!
Alma Hyral She'd just murmur to herself, "Shouldn't it be darkness as a husband? Or am I being executed by a thespian version of Helena?"

She'd breathe out a sigh. Not exactly the way she'd thought she was going to die. And then her lips twisted into a sad smile, as she whispered, with her eyes closed, "Sorry that I was such a terrible daughter, daddy..."
Pumpkinhead Feige Abramson intercepted Alma's transmission and thought about it. Would it be neccessary for her to interfere? This put Alma out of her sight but it wasn't terribly likely Alma would be problematic. It could, however, interfere with their common experiment. That was unacceptable. And besides, she has something she would like to test.

Beetle is that something. It more or less looks like a Beetleborg. It's humanoid, garbed in a black armored shell, and a helmet with two antenna. There is a visor on the helmet, though its tinted so it is impossible to see inside. A skull is painted on it for good measure.

The Beetle approaches the building. There is a door in, but it requires moving around a bit. Instead, the Beetle looks at the wall and rears back its fist and--


It walks inside. It does not assault anyone immediately, that's not technically its job here. It advances on the machinery first, firing blasts from a wristblaster at it recklessly.

It can speak.


To quote the illustrious rapper Albert Einstein, it sounds like WALL-E having sex with a Speak and Spell.
Artyom W. Valodjn A mountain walks, and the earth trembles at its footsteps.

Clad in nearly air-tight sheets of granite and marble, it's a miracle that the thing can even breathe. This is doubly so because the stone soldier is currently several feet underneath the beach, moving through earth and damp sand by virtue of the geomantic wards etched into its armor. It sees by virtue of a visor of brilliant, emerald stone hewn over its eyes- enchanted to detect nearby vibrations. It is thus that it finds its way to the machine in motion.

Moving underground is the only way he could approach this location without being detected. The man within the stone soldier- Artyom W. Valodjn- is not a very stealthy sort. It's one of the trade-offs you make for being absolutely colossal. Even while moving underground, it isn't difficult to tell when he draws near.

This is because Artyom, while underground, tends to generate very slight tremors whenever he moves.

It isn't long before he reaches his target. The Geoid Guard's visor begins glowing with tellurian light as it rises, inch by inch at first- creating a deformation in the floor of the staging-hut. Layers of earth and sand peel away with the sound of rolling thunder as the divot ruptures like the caldera of a volcano, except there is no magma- there is only a colossus, surfacing from down below, its every feature obscured by that incredibly thick armor.

Artyom clenches one gauntleted hand, focusing his magical power into reinforcing his defenses. The armor bristles and shifts, draining mass from the hole it had opened in the ground to harden its armor.

He takes a step forward, wordlessly raises the massive stone club that he calls a sword, and brings it down into a particularly sensitive cluster of machinery.
Seloria Delacreaux Somewhere nearby Annia, Seloria continues moving silently through the room.

The silence is then shattered by a certain thing known as a 'Beetle'. Seloria's head snaps around quickly, her green eyes widening as she watches the Beetle move. Oh-- oh dear, maybe there's /two/ things to save Alma from.

The summoner sighs, then uses the Frank Distraction to attempt to dart towards Alma. Save the world, save the girl.
Soan Sagittarius The mountain walks, certainl. However, the Chosen of the First Ones does not need to come from underground. Indeed, all he needs is a good, nice place a mile away to jump from, a cloud to adjust his trajectory or other tall buildings, then let the laws of gravity assert themselves after being so throughly ridiculed by that silly little man in full plate armor.

Just as a thunderous crack pierces the ceilling, a very familiar shout to all natives of Galianda echoes through, taking very little heed of the mess it just made in sounds, or the machinery going on. It is a shout, a piercing scream from an unnatural throat.


With a cacophony of debris, DRAGOON MAN falls through the broken roof with all the subtlety of a giant meteor, powering throughy machines. Standing on top of it, body cracking and smoking, the Dragoon stares straight at Illua, brandishing his spear toward her. "I must applaud you, m'am! You application process in your mundane little society is only faintly more painful than any regular application interviews!" He shouts, his eyes darting toward Alma before leaping toward it. "BUT YOUR PITCH NEEDS WORKS!"
Alma Hyral ...For some reason the giant Beetleborg is.. more terrifying than the death machine.

As it smashes through and shouts that Alma is coming with it, she'd actually gape, and turn to face it. And then she'd shriek, "OHSWEETCOSMAWHATISTHAT?!"

One rational part of her mind told her that if it was a robot, then it was probably sent by MAD SCIENCE. In particular Feige Abramson. The other part of her mind told her, /Wait, why would Feige even give a <GOOSEHONK>?/ Unless.. well either 1. She wanted to experiment on /her/, which while possible, still seemed unlikely.. even so, being a science experiment of Feige Abramson was far more terrifying than impending execution. Or 2. Feige actually cared that much about their little social experiment to keep her alive.

Either way.../TERROR!/ and it was more of her rescuer, more than the death machine that was about to kill her.

She'd writhe around within her bonds, looking about in a panicked manner, "DRAGOONMANARTYOMSELORIAANNIAKAMONKYRASOANANYONEPLEASESAVEME!"

She was starting to hyperventilate, and then.. Oh wait, they were all actually here. Well that allowed her to calm down, just a bit, but still... /TERROR/!
Illua And then everything goes insane.

Illua snaps her fan closed decisively, smiling massively. Oh, thank /goodness/, she was worried this was going to be a tragedy after all. When all is lost and the performance is about to end with a whimper, rather than a bang- and she knows Alma does a lot of whimpering- nothing spices things up like the eleventh hour appearence of the cavalry.

Hers, that is, not theirs. Leaping from the eaves and from out of boxes and barrels, Khamja ninjas and moogle mages, ascals and scoundrels, villians and knaves all storm into the room.

"Seize them!" Illua shouts, drawing her katana from its long sheath. She kicks the chair over, and it hits the necromancer in the head.

Silently, she's disappointed that Alma is more scared of that robot than her.

The bangaa templar- one of them, at least- gets a poisonous dagger in the back, which slips through his armor. It's not enough to put him down straight away, though! Both of them are upon Annia in an instant.

Illua puts herself between Seloria and the machine, pointing her sword at her- and preparing to use her deadly nightshade powers. "Have at it."

One of Illua's white mages casts Protect at the last second on that critical machinery, so it rattles but doesn't shatter. As the huge stone club struggles against the barrier, one ninja attaches an explosive scroll to the Geoid Guard's back. More ninjas are likewise ready to swarm Feige's beetleborg, using ninpu darkness techniques to erode its considerable metal armor.

Illua rushes through the air, her katana slicing through wind and time with equal ease as she blinks back and forth striking both Seloria and DRAGOON MAN. She's determined to keep them away from Alma, who continues to roll towards the loud, chattering horns. These begin bleating ... extremely hurtful insults at her? Yes, they're shouting about how pathetic she is and how many thing she isn't going to be able to do with her life because she's going to die.

That necromancer has a /weird/ sense of humor.
Alma Hyral Is the machine really... playing back recorded hurtful insults at her? The death machine, is trying to bully her emotionally?

She'd have laughed if not for.. well, /TERROR/ at the Beetleborg!

But she was calming down swiftly. Given everyone that had arrived just in the nick of time.. she /probably/ wouldn't die, would she?

And they /probably/ wouldn't let the Beetleborg take her, right?

Watching Illua, she'd call out a warning as she descended on Seloria and Dragoon Man, "SELLY! DRAGOON MAN! WATCH OUT!"

The rest she couldn't yet perceive through all the chaos that was currently ongoing.
Annia Leradine Fortunatly for her, Bangaas are not very fast, so she doesn't have too much difficulties moving out of their attacks. On top of that, they are wearing heavy armors. And Annia... well... a step over nude at least, but it would hardly count as protection either way. But when it comes to dodging, she doesn't have too much problems either. Ducking under the first blade, her twin daggers gleam through the small amount of light beautifully, as she strikes toward their ankles, chipping at them. That's most of her attack style, chipping away at them with precise hits to debilitate them, and then strike hard when they are down.

Once she slipped behind them, she digs her daggers through their armors again, but then jabbing downward to break their armors off, leaving more unprotected pieces for her to strike into.

And then she flisp away, and its like her demeanor completly changes, even making cutie eyes at them and talking with a honey-like voice "Let's all be friends now, you wouldn't hurt a girl just because she stabbed you a few times, wouldn't you?" No, she's not really expecting to fall for that, but its part of her tactics too, creating a moment of hesitation that would slow them down.
Pumpkinhead The Beetle is about the size of an adult male, disregarding the bulk.

The darkness rips through the armor. At first it doesn't even seem like the Beetle is going to react to that all that much, even as shrapnel falls off its frame. But after a moment it says, "JACK AND JILL WENT UP THE HILL TO FETCH A PAIL OF MEMORIES, JACK FELL DOWN AND BROKE HIS CROWN AND LOST HIS THOUGHTS FOREVER." Pause. "ENGAGING AUTO-HASTE ENGINE."

The Beetle rears back with a hand--and well that's all that's visible to the naked eye. That and the ninja flying away from it all the way across the room.

The heroes aren't impeding its progress so it does not interfere with their efforts. An enemy of my enemy is my friend for the time being, it seems.

In a sense, it seems like The Beetle is a ninja in of itself, it suddenly vanishes from its position and reappears behind one of the ninja, intending to dashing palm strike it. It vanishes again to another ninja's side to kick it and knock its legs out from under it. And then one last time to tweak another ninja's nose.

"ALMA, YOU ARE COMING WITH ME." It says again.
Artyom W. Valodjn Explosions rock the Geoid Guard's incredibly thick armor! Shards of granite and deep mountain stone are flung into the air, filling it with a thick, grey, strangulating dust. But even as the explosion clears, the armor seems to regenerate, layers of stone filling regions that had only just been hewn away. Artyom turns with more dexterity than his build belies, twisting momentum into his sword to knock the ninja into a nearby wall.

Its visor gleams, burning with tremendous, tectonic fury. There is no time for this shenaniganry.

Artyom lifts his weapon high overhead, and brings it down once more into the barrier-protected armor. The colossus's feet leave the ground, propelled by a sandstone spring. It hurtles through the air in a deadly arc, before coming down among the ranks of Khamja's many mages.

A voice roars through the stone- but any words it speaks are obscured by the armor. Thus, as Artyom swings his mighty blade into the mage brigade, the only thing that he can really is "GAAOOOOOOOO--"

Of course, his communicator still works just fine.

The Geoid Guard's assault is not limited to just a single strike. It weaves forward, hewing again and again into as many robed figures as it can. Artyom throws the massive momentum generated by his colossal weight into every swing, gathering his victims into a narrow cone, before bringing his blade down right into their center line.

As it makes impact, the ground underneath erupts upward in a spray of hot, liquified earth.
Soan Sagittarius Keeping DRAGOON MAN away from something is an exercise in futility. The Dragoon watches Illua coming at him, frowning a little down at the resistant machine. Ah well, that would have been too easy, now would it? Almost effortlessly, the armored man backflips away from the slize, only clipping him on the arm, creating some sparks out off his spectral armor as he sails through the air. He cling to the pillar of the place, looking down, his glowing eyes surveying the place. Alright. Crazy necromancer. Goons of necromancer. Bettlebug that looks very, very omnious and seems to be only here because of Alma, and making things worse for her.

Things races in Soan's mind, making connection. Who else would be interested in Alma, and have access to that kind of technology? He can mostly thing of a few. "You know, despite what most people say, I didn't miss this kind of crap, Chaos Spawn." DRAGOON MAN lets out at Illua, leaping from machine to other parts of the wall to make his way toward Alma, kicking and always keeping as much as he can airborn. Roofs makes it difficult, but for a man in full plate, this guy is insane.

"This ain't /original/, look at this! Spikes! Who uses spikes, nowdays? They're a pain to clean for you! Acid baths? Health hazard!" He keeps sassing, interrupting his rant in mid-air to breath down a wave of water energies the casters, as well as the machines to short them out.

Most notably, the Bettlebug also get included into this as DRAGOON MAN jumps over it.

His goal is to break Alma's bindings to catch her -- and probably catch most of what she's been held to, for that matter.
Seloria Delacreaux Seloria looks at Illua, rage burning in her green eyes.

She comes at her, and the girl whirls around, ducking down low to the ground as she evades the falling blade, before popping back up to her feet, Sylph blossoming into the air around her.

"Alma, it's okay." She calls out, walking away from Illua. "You're not going with anyone but Dragoon Man an' me an' Frank an' Annia, okay?"

A rushing whirlwind of air blasts out towards Illua, followed by a muffle krac-thoom of thunder and lightning.
Illua Machine don't stop rollin'!

Annia is inflicting chip damage on the templars, abusin' and confusin' them- unfortunately, the chips she's taking are mostly 'out of their armour' rather than their hides, which has the end result of ... not actually hurting them all that much. They try to come at her from each side, surrounding 'er and trying to counter with bone-crushing blows, forcing her down onto her butt! Your wily female ways will not work on us!

A burly brawl commences between the Khamja creeps and the two huge chunky guys. But whereas one is a big rocky golem, the other heavily armored guy is a lightning bruiser, zipping from ninja to ninja and sending them flying. Logically, the correct solution to this is to electrocute it, right? Thunder scrolls, ho! Electricity bursts from the thrown objects, and in an enclosed area it's liable to spill everywhere, bouncing off of the machinery. Meanwhile, Illua's white mage ally is doing an incredible job and will surely be given a raise for courage under fire after this, putting intense power into her protect barriers, layering them into an opposing cone to cancel out Geoid Guard's attack. One of the Moogle gunners raises a huge blunderbuss and attempts to freeze the golem in place with Stopshot.

Illua isn't willing to give Alma up that easily! Although she's struck by a crackle of lightning, she forces through it, slashing forward and past. She follows DRAGOON MAN onto the conveyor belt, both of them duelling practically on top of Alma right now.

"I did not contruct the machine! It's the work of one of my subordin-" Illua attempts to explain, before she's silenced by the clashing attack. She fiercely swings her katana, clashing again and again against Soan as she tries to sever him momentarily from time's flow. If she pauses him in place...

Then the huge barrel with the skull and crossbones they're rapidly approaching will douse Alma and her would-be savior!
Artyom W. Valodjn Electricity and walls of force and bullets that strike at the very fabric of space and time blast into the Geoid Guard's tremendous armor. Lightning dances across its surface, ionizing the moisture holding the top layer together as the rest of the Khamja assault wears away at the plates. The colossus' movements are arrested briefly by the Stopshot, but a mysterious, crystalline pulse seems to melt the magic away as the colossus quickly resumes its assault.

First thing's first.

The Geoid Guard twists, leaping off a nearby ledge to launch itself back into the horde of guild soldiers. Its weapon roars with earth-shattering fury as it swings, smiting the earth itself with a tremendous cascade of force. Sheets of stone launch out of the ground, hardening themselves into place over its arms and legs as it continues its rampage.

While he may not be able to attack the machines directly, Artyom seems to have taken a different tack. The earth underneath certain portions of the construct begin to tremble and splinter, as if the land below the hut was being eroded. Given that Artyom is A: A Geomancer, and B: A Mystic Knight, this may well be the case.

Meanwhile, the glow within the colossus' visor seems to... Intensify? That's probably a good word for it.

It won't be long now.
Annia Leradine Caught between the two hulking Bangaas was probably not the best place to be, the problem with the charm attack is when it doesn't actually create any sort of hesitation... instead it just angers them more, which is bad for the dancer here. The large swords cleave down, and despite her agility, she can't pick up on both movements, one of them crashing into her side and sending her tumbling down, alot less elegantly than she'd like to.

She grunts as she moves back up to her feet "I don't think you understand here." She wipes the corner of her mouth with the back of her wrist "Alma is not your toy to play with, she's one of MY toys, and I'm getting her back!" Getting back to the flow of her 'dance', she spirals on herself with her daggers held high up, twirling around the bangaas as she takes what seems to be random shots at them, striking left and right, as if part of the dance itself, as her daggers seems to be possessed by a sort of dark glow.
Alma Hyral Her hero was dueling Illua nearly right on top of her.

It would be a total fangirl moment if not for the fact that she was /ABOUT TO DIE!/

Or at least be seriously uncomfortable whenever what was in that vat of chemicals was dumped right on top of her.

She'd warn Dragoon Man with a shout, "ABOVE US!"

Well.. if she was about to die, she might as well take this oppurtunity to say her farewells. As Selly tried to comfort her, she'd just look in her direction, taking some time to compose herself before calling out to her with her bravest voice, suprisingly calm. "Selly.. if I don't make it. Thank everyone for me. Alright?"

Well that was kind of a lame goodbye.. so.. she added on, "..I love you all."

Except the Beetleborg. Screw that thing.
Seloria Delacreaux Seloria side-eyes Annia. "Does this mean we've got a three-girl timeshare going on with Alma? 'cause, I mean, it's Helena, you, and me, so..."

Seloria just makes things worse.

She hisses angrily as she is slashed and dashed past - however, she trusts DRAGOON MAN. DRAGOON MAN, you better not die, you've got two girls counting on you!

Seloria attempts to helpfully untie Alma, or just sever the connections.
Pumpkinhead Dragoon Man's jumping power is so mighty it causes tidal events! The Beetle is ZORCHED in the back with electricity and it stumbles before collapsing into a crouch. Electricity then bursts OUT of the machine briefly but noticeable. It stumbles back into a standing position before Soan's tidal wave threatens to crash it about.


The Beetle flashes between the ninjas again, intending to whallop them about. The certainly palpable hit seems to have made it angry. It didn't seem like it was hit by the wave, it must have leapt above it before flashing back down.

But it doesn't leave Soan alone. It flashes once more, reappearing near Soan--

--grabbing him by the head and intending to slam him down into the constructor belt.

It rears back its arms and pummels rapidly. If Soan doesn't get out the way then he's in for a bad day. If he does, the constructor belt will have an even worse day. It does not mention Alma this time. It thinks it got its point across so far.
Soan Sagittarius The time strikes from that Katana seems to have some effects -- if not to the extent that she'd wish it had. There is a definite slow down on the fully armored DRAGOON MAN. It's very perceptible by the way his voice speaks, slowing down, almost ridiculous to the point of a slow-mo movie. "Sooooooo youuuuuu blaaaaaammeeee yoooouur faiiiiiluuuurees ooooon youuuuur gooooooooons?"

His body, however, seems barely affected, beyond a faint trail of slowness going on to the dragoon. Her strikes creates further sparks and slight chips in his armor, chips that vanishes into the ether when separated from the armor proper. Then the bettleborg decides he want a piece out of Dragoon Man.

Funnily enough, it would have worked perfectly to make him meet the conveyer belt if he wasn't slowed already. Adjusting for his power and sudden lack of momentum, or at least as such, Dragoon Man's spear glows with a bright light, twisting himself and getting scrapped by the grab of his head. It fails to snatch him, still the impact causing some damage. In return, still in slow-motionish, DRAGOON MAN slams his spear into the conveyer belt, where he thought the bettle would be in.

He even have a snappy comeback while he does that!


This is when things becomes a little nut, as he recovers from his failed blow, Dragoon Man takes a deep breath in, facing both, then breathing out a large stream of fire aimed at them, before leaping slowly upward in a spinning kick. With the time dilatation he have right now, he's annoyingly hovering almost in mid-air.
Illua Illua goes up in flames! Her Grimore by her side remains unharmed, but she's not. She's got burnt spots on her clothes now, and she's quite singed. Pretty tired of all this mess, is just going to go for what she probably should have always done- just forget the huge elaborate machine and do it yerself. Darkness- wisps of raw, pureblack shadows- coats her katana, and she unleashes a terrible abyssal blade attack that seems to cleave at the fabric of time and space. But rather than slash apart everyone nearby, the brave defense of DRAGOON MAN is her entire target, for better or worse.

But it's not over! Although the conveyor belt is stalled, that enormous barrel begins to tilt dangerously, loosened by the damage to the room and the floor... it topples over, a deluge of liquid pouring down towards Alma and Seloria! IS THIS THE END FOR THEM BOTH?

It's... not filled with horrible acid or blacktog or fatal poison. In fact, it's filled with pig's blood and Malboro juice.

Again, we would like to stress this necromancer had a weird sense of humor.

The Beetle continues to give and take blows from the Khamja ninja squad, and the high-speed combat is surprising to see as black bodies dart rapidly to and fro all through the inside of the warehouse. Even worse, as this is going on, the Geoid Guard is just making an absolute terror of itself, foregoing rapid blows to just smash its enemies like ninepins, concrete smashing up into limbs to reinforce them. The floor is beginning to give way, the machinery shaking...

The huge vat of dark goo creaking...

A light fixture falls from the rafters and shatters next to Annia, who is also dancing rings around the Bangaa templars. This rapid attack is more effective, cracking through their rapidly weakening armor and pushing through it to drain their health.

Hey, where'd that moogle go?

Oh crap, he's got a really big gun! Wheeling a weapon that's twice as big as he is out, the moogle Gunner sets up a tripod and turns his weapon on everyone in a sweeping arc, trusting in his allies to dodge and his enemies to not. He seems to be cackling to himself, though, so maybe he's not... TOO upset about whether or not they take a hit? The necromancer certainly takes a shot to the butt.
Annia Leradine The battle has been going onf or a while, and she's managed to avoid most of the crippling hits from two bangaas. At least she still got it, after last time she was pretty ashamed of her shape, Alma had to save her hide a few times even. This time, she can pay back the favor. Dodging and weaving through the heavy sword like a dance, she jumps up, landing on top of the bangaa's helmet, twirling her daggers and then bringing them to her sides as she flips away. "Time for the finale!" Her eyes twinkle as she gets ready to pull the curtain down on this ballet. Yes, dance is really where she shines the most.

The final part falls down in three parts, like a freestyle of three different dance styles. The first part slices the daggers upward, straight up with an inverted grip on them, at the same time as she jumps over the first Bangaa, landing down behind it with two more vertical slashes as she comes downward.

Then she twirls on herself, moving a hair's breadth to the side of the next bangaa, spinning on herself while the daggers are extended out, like a tornado of razor sharp winds. The third and final part, coming to the stop behind the second bangaa, she suddenly zips, twice, back and forth, with large horizontal gashes appearing on the bangaas as she slices with the two daggers several times, it seems faster than the eye can catch.

And finally, a flourish, as if thanking her audience, completing the performance. "This is where you fall."
Artyom W. Valodjn It seems that these intrepid heroes are literally bringing down the house. Rubble and a light fixture tumble down onto the Geoid Guard, cracking its tremendous bulk. But that's not what really stings. Bullets rain down like... Well, like /rain./ Slugs of hot lead sledge into the Geoid Guard, chewing through granite like it were sheets of sugar cake.

The Geoid Guard's armor seems to crumble apart at the assault, revealing the (still armored, but not by stone) body of its owner below. It raises its weapon to deflect much of the assault, erecting a barrier of earth to absorb the rain of bullets. Behind, Artyom raises a hand, and you can almost hear the music start as the colossus' fallen armor begins to creep back up into place, like some kind of robot made entirely of rock.

The tune starts kind of like this:


Green light flows out from Artyom's hand as this process goes on. Slow and steady, he will claim victory.

Of course, all this earth-consuming can't be very good for the foundations of this poor, beleaguered hut.
Alma Hyral And then she was drenched in that foul-smelling concoction of Marlboro blood and pig's blood. She was coughing, and sputtering. And yes, indeed, she looked ridiculous and smelled even worse than before. Two days of captivity and not being allowed to freshen up didn't have her smelling like roses. Through the efforts of Seloria, Soan, and the others, she was freed from her bonds.

Once she was free, she'd stand upon the conveyor belt. Her small frame wobbling from the lack of food. She was tired, spent, and weak...

She was also angry. Very, very angry. While she was a pacifist by nature, this woman was now endangering her friends, whom had all come to rescue her. In that moment, she allowed her mind to slip into that same realm that it had been in for much of her captivity.. it was what kept her together. And despite the tranquility she felt.. her anger still lingered.

She'd step forward down that conveyor belt, a yellow aureole appearing over her as she stared calmly at Illua, her voice serene.

You desired my research, for selfish purposes. Now, I will show it to you...

And then she mentally adjusted her gravity, took control of her momentum. And like she had shown to Annia earlier. She danced, throughout the air. She became a radiant yellow orb, that zipped about the room, weaving up and down, in a pattern which was almost chaotic.

In reality.. there was perfect order to it. Every place she touched, a bright sigil formed. And when she was finished, she hung suspended in mid-air. Time in.

Eight sigils joined together at Illua's left like luminescent stars, their radiance becoming blinding, in the pattern of a Celestial Chariot, a constellation from the Land of Dragons.

Auriga, bright lights of the tiger of the West, and the Vermillion Bird of the South..

Seventeen sigils joined to the right of Illua, this time in the shape of a great dragon with a gaping maw. A constellation from both the World of Manhatten, and her own.

Draco Bahamut, Guardian of the infinite clouds...

And another seven sigils joined together directly above Illua, in a straight line. A simple constellation from their world known as the Seven Virtues.

Seven Stars, Seven Virtues. All of creation is her, and as you rebel against creation...

A circular magical array formed upon her hand. She jutted her hand into it, then twisted it, before cutting her hand down towards Illua, and suddenly all at once, every single Sigil blazed to life.. and then as one began to streak towards Illua, as every single fallen star strikes her simultaneously. A brilliant, radiant explosion of light that momentarily blinds all who behold it.

...creation rebels against you.

She still looked and smelled /ridiculously bad/ despite the display.
Seloria Delacreaux Seloria watches Alma, then looks at Illua.

"You done fucked up." The summoner offers observationally, which causes Sylph, sitting over Seloria's shoulder, to frown at her disapprovingly. "Whoops. Sorry, Goddess." She says, even as little bursts of air wrap around Soan and Annia.
Kyra Hyral Something large drops from the hole in the roof previously made from Dragoon Man. This object appears to be the size of a small toddler and upon closer inspection, looks to be a large, thickly-walled "drum" container. This object is dropped into the vat of goo and quickly starts to sink.

Something else drops from the hole-more accurately, shot. It shatters into glass against the hard metal of the drum, releasing some sort of caustic agent that eats away at the container. Once a sizable hole has been chewed through, mist appears to rise from the drum. More of the metal dissolves away, releasing the liquid nitrogen contained within into the vat of goo. This particular chemical is known to instantly freeze things.

Kyra peeks down from the hole in the roof, a scowl on her face. "WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS <GOOSEHONK>?!"
Pumpkinhead Beetle really didn't want to fight a superhero, but it was left little choice in the matter through its orders.

Soan FIRE KICKS the Beetle so hard it goes crashing along the conveyer belt. It barely even manages to roll away from the moogle's hugeass gun. It takes a look at Soan, at Alma, and then notably Alma's ridiculous magical assault.

Data logged. Star Magic? Fascinating. Not to Beetle, who doesn't care, but to Feige Abramson.

Beetle stands itself up, still on fire. Despite everything, it seems to have chiefly sustained moderate damage. It says, "LONDON BRIDGE IS FALLING DOWN, FALLING DOWN, FALLING DOWN. LONDON BRIDGE IS FALLING DOWN, ALLOW ME TO RENEGOTIATE TERMS."


Beetle, for new arrivals, looks--basically--like a Beetleborg, it's about the size of an adult male. "ONLY ATTACKED SINCE YOU ATTACKED." It claims. "UNDERESTIMATED YOU. NEEDS TO FOLLOW ALMA."

It looks towards Kyra.

"I AM NOT RESPONSIBLE." It points towards Illua, then looks back to Soan.
Soan Sagittarius This slow-motion, this decceleration of time is rather a pain in the ass for Soan Sagittarius. Time Magic is such a pain, he thinks, his mind being a sort of desynched with the slowness of his body. Time is very complicated, after all. Many things happens all at once that prevents him to really react to anything in a particular manner, well after that he's through the follow up of his movements.

Blows slams into him, as well as cuts, slam attacks and cuts from the katana. They just make things even more annoying for Dragoon Man -- and even more annoying for /her/ as it didn't seem to do all that much to the man in full plate. His mind, in passing, watches the display of Alma, angered and using her powers that he knew she had. So that's what she is talking about, huh. Welp. That's not normal White Magic alright, he conceeds.

His movements, by the way, includes him landing on the ground, slowly rolling and his body trashing from the multiple impacts belatedly, before landing into a crouch, sparks of spectral energy even vanishing around him in slow motion.

They're free. Even Kyra is here now. Time to do this.

"BYYYYY THEEEE SKIIIIIES AAAABOOOOOVE THEEEEE SKIIIIIIIIIES." Dragoon Man shouts, energy gathering at his feet as he leaps upward, upward to the room, slamming hard into it, but not THROUGH it. He clings, upside down, bright eyes like tiny suns at Illua and the Beetle. The entire building shakes, adding to Artyom's rampage as he launches himself like a terribly slow comet, a blast of energy surrounding him. He rains down from the skies, like an meteorite of full wrath against the forces of Chaos. Slow, but persistent, unyelding.

"CHAAAAOOOOS NEEEEEVEEEER THRIIIIIIIVES!" He shouts, his voice still disorted as he crashes down, pulling out all that accumulated, slow momemtum to deliver an horizontal jump at both of them. HIs attacks may be slowed, but the results aren't going to me.
Illua Chaos reigns, although not the kind Alexander Academy allumni hate. In the chaos, it's very easy for Kyra to slip in.

The huge vat of sludge is creaking dangerously, unnoticed due to the chaos. It would have probably fallen over and flooded the room- were it not for a cunning trick that begins to freeze its contents solid.

Meanwhile, things are getting shot. The moogle Gunner's madcap attack rakes across the area, sending people dodging- and some, like the Geoid Guard, just war with the attack's damage, taking it and buffing itself up. Pieces of the machine fall over as the ground is ripped out from under them.

The conveyor belt is likewise shattered, metal and rubber falling everywhere, the engines exploding and beginning to catch fire.

Annia is on fire in a different way- Annia slashes first up then down, slicing one of the templars and causing him to keel- worse, this WASN'T the guy that was poisoned, so he was the healthier of the two. The one that was raises his weapon weakly- and both of them are quite literally caught up in the cyclone, picked up and spun around in a razor wind- and in mid-air, slashed a dozen times before they hit the ground.


Illua's men are beginning to make their own way out, on the back hoof because they recognise when they're losing and they don't want to tango with those lightning bruisers. They toss smoke bombs, silver hourglasses, spider webs- all sorts of things to gum up their enemies and retreat.

Illua herself? She's glad she never paid for this building.

She glares at Soan as he leaps onto the ceiling, which is already beginning to come apart just like the rest of the building. She grits her teeth, shrugging off the silence finally--

And her Gran Grimoire leaps from her side, spinning around her to create a dark aura. She raises her katana-- and amazingly, when Dragoon Man falls, the immense dragon-fuelled clash--

Clashes against her blade, a sound of ringing metal as she grapples, darkness against the falling comet. She sneers at him.

"Don't attach your foreign appelations to me, you pompous, costumed fool," she snaps, swinging the blade and trying to shove him aside. "Now-"

She looks at Alma, and narrows her eyes. This is going to be interesting.

Illua clenches her fist and her teeth as Alma weaves a spell around her. First left, then right, then above. She doesn't understand what they are and she doesn't really care.

She looks up, giving Alma a look right in the eye, an expression as haughty and self-assured as she ever was--

Bring it, girl.

And then the sign explodes! Thirty-two streaking, falling stars crash into Illua simultaneously, burning her furiously with the strength of starlight--

And yet, Illua stands. Her Gran Grimoire hovers over her heart, the weird book utterly unharmed by the deadly attack.

"That's good," she says, her voice predatory and different to before. "You've got a sting in the tale after all, little mouse. But my story has far more pages to it than yours."

The Grimoire opens, pages whipping in a phantom wind, as Illua slashes her sword in the air. A rift seems to open up above everyone, a momentary glimpse into a World of Darkness...

"And I will teach you all a lesson about my power!"

Streaks of dark power and lightning crash down!
Annia Leradine It would seem that Annia's flourishing finish wasn't enough, which isn't going to please. But they DID fall down, so there's that. She turns toward the rest of the mobs, the grouping of ninjas and others. Looks like ALma got freed up at least. The two bangaas probably would have gotten in the way, so that was her contribution to it. Leaving the Bangaas for defeated, she zips toward the others to bring some backup, speeding through the old warehouse, she tosses her daggers out, ribbons wrapping around the different targets to make them crash down to the ground as she tugs on the ends of them, the daggers turning to her after the ribbong work. "Looks like Alma is in good shape too."
Kyra Hyral Smoothly, Kyra leans away from the hole in the roof just as blasts of dark lightning start shooting out of it. The lightning passes mere inches around her but she doesn't seem too frightened by what was no doubt a powerful spell blowing past her.

She looks back down, eyes narrowing at the woman that the BEETLEBORG pointed out-whom has been confirming all of this with incessant ranting about how she is the main character or some kind of nonsense like that. "Chocobocrap! If you were the main character, you wouldn't be kidnapping people!" Kyra points at Illua, "You should be careful not to kidnap people!"

Leaning back onto her heels, Kyra clasps her hands together and looks down. Magical power gathers around her, then swells as, in this moment, she seems quite capable of unleashing some well-controlled, honest-to-Cosma white magic.

The blessings of the goddess are, of course, centered upon Dragoon Man.
Kyra Hyral Smoothly, Kyra leans away from the hole in the roof just as blasts of dark lightning start shooting out of it. The lightning passes mere inches around her but she doesn't seem too frightened by what was no doubt a powerful spell blowing past her.

She looks back down, eyes narrowing at the woman that the BEETLEBORG pointed out-whom has been confirming all of this with incessant ranting about how she has more pages or some nonsense like that. "<GOOSEHONK>, please. You better start running because you are not going to enjoy what I put inside you when I catch up."

Leaning back onto her heels, Kyra clasps her hands together and looks down. Magical power gathers around her, then swells as, in this moment, she seems quite capable of unleashing some well-controlled, honest-to-Cosma white magic.

The blessings of the goddess are, of course, centered upon Dragoon Man.
Alma Hyral She'd look upon Kyra as she entered, her expression wavering, and losing it's calm. And then she looked away from her, her shame palpable.

Deep down, she knew that Kyra wouldn't be ashamed of her, that she knew already, and would be supportive.. it didn't make it any easier to face that shame.

And then there was a glimpse into the world of darkness. She saw the dark lightning coming...

Interesting fact about Alma's magic, despite being /flashy/ and /fancy/ she had nowhere near the /oomph/ that her sister had. However, it was magic that she had perfect control over. With good enough timing, and a little /boost/ handily supplied by Illua it could still be rather impressive.

When the lightning came.. she didn't bother to dodge. She took it head on. And then she shrieked. She shrieked long and hard, in agony as it clashed against the yellow corona against her and she suffered terribly. But then something interesting happened...

While her clothing sizzled, while her body had severe burns about her.. the lightning crackled across the aura. Slowly that crackling dark electricity was absorbed into it as that aura flared brighter, from yellow, to bright, burning white. With the lightning boosting it's amount of energy, it became too much for her to control.. it had become something painful for even Alma to retain about her.

So she didn't. She descended rapidly to the ground. She pulled back an arm, and then she cut it towards Illua. A roiling mass of bright holy energy, with streaks of electricity still writhing across across it's surface was sent her way. And when it reached her..

Well even Kyra might be proud about the size of the explosion.
Seloria Delacreaux "Siren, rise, and sing a song of beauty and love...."

"And fire."

Sylph dissipates, having been over Seloria's shoulder for a long, long time, and the bewitching Siren appears next, and the pair both start singing softly. The first thing that comes is a combination of white and red light - both aim to wash over Illua in a mix of fire and holy light - before the song fades away into a sort of Silence that is almost worse than the music itself.
Pumpkinhead The Beetle is assaulted through gummy spiderwebs and the like, but it doesn't seem to bother it much. It slows it down, but its focus is not on them. It may not have much concern for its own safety. Soan uses SLOW METEOR attack, Beetle uses the opportunity to rip free of the webbing and flit to the opposite side of the building to get seriously outta the way. Is it retreating?

No. Once Soan's assault is over and done with, it flashes right by Soan and it looks at him for a while.


Please enjoy these pictures of pretty bunnies. Look at the bunnies hop! It's so cute! Aww look that one's trying to stay awake! And look! That one's enjoying a radish! Oooooh how cute! You could just huggle one right now.


Hey look at that, now there's some puppies giving the bunnies rides! OH MY GOSH It's SO KYUUUTE!



Throughout all this, Beetle is trying to smash Dragoon Man to bits with old fashioned brutality. Feige is probably listening in. She wants this one to follow it. What will Dragoon Man do? Or someone else?
Artyom W. Valodjn Earth and stone surge around the colossus, waging a war of attrition against the forces raised against him. Strangely, Artyom does not do much in the way of moving when he's assaulted, instead choosing to stand his ground and weather the attack like some kind of glacier made of stone. (Most call these Stone-Glaciers 'Mountains.')

Then, when the assault dies, when Artyom is left standing amidst piles of rubble and gravel, when he is finally alone, does Artyom finally move. His weapon is raised skyward. Its mass seems to increase by the moment, growing greater and greater with each passing second. Gravel and broken earth swirl about the blade, coalescing into an impossibly dense slab of stone.

Lines of emerald green light shoot across its surface, weaving through irregularities in the stone, shedding radiance that seems to bleed off from the weapon like magma sloughing from the slopes of a volcano's cone.

On the colossus' chest, parting the slabs of earth and stone to reveal a blazing, emerald eye. The jade core surges with crystalline power, bathing the world in light that seems to transform unprotected solids into so much glass. Artyom's voice manages to, somehow, roar through his granite helm.

"Power Words set: Thurisaz, Ansuz, Eihaz, Tiwaz." He twists, impossible power surging through his limbs. Artyom twists, bringing his weapon upward to crest magnificently overhead. "Evacuate immediately," Artyom warns, "Assault Ready: Standby."

His eyes tighten as he looks to the machine.


Artyom roars, his voice bellowing through the room as he brings the sword down. A shockwave erupts from its tremendous edge, rippling outward and down into the earth. The land trembles, compressed air and tectonic force launches boulders the size of large dwarves into the ceiling like shrapnel.

And then, the earth parts.

A great, gaping hole opens in the floor beneath the machine. Pulses of crystalline light flood from the chasm, carrying with them great brachiating, crystalline brambles that seek the bodies of the dwindling Khamja. The vines ensnare, cut, burn through blood and transform flesh to gemstone.

There is a sound like tinkling glass. Artyom swings his weapon one more time into the crystal formation, unleashing a burst of emerald glass that lacerates all those who have been trapped. The crystals seem to dissolve, fading into a cascade of beautiful gold and green motes. They filter up through the hole in the ceiling, illuminating the night with the soft glow of earth-light.

Only then does the Geoid Guard go silent.
Soan Sagittarius At long, long last, the slow spell stops on Soan- -- and everythng comes back rushing to him. Words, actions, comes back flooding at him, including the negociations from that beetle bot. Who is, understandingly, quite angry about how he didn't answer to any of them. Unfortunately for him, it's quite a bad time to return to the regularities of time-space continium.

Dark lightning courses through the air, striking Dragoon Man as he recovers from his onslaught, slowly standing back to his feet. Kyra's spells and Seloria's magic helps him along, their faith and aid bolstering his will and battered body. The dark lightning strikes him, quite strongly, making the whole armor shudders from the electricity. Then there is the beetle, unloading on him as he staggers to his feet. There is a glow of light that surrounds him, as he stares down at the robot, staring wordlessly as it let loss it profanities and it's frustration. His body recoils from the blows, certainly, but little harm seems to be done beyond the chipping of his armor.

He can smell the taint. THe taint from that lightning and from the robot are different, yet similar. Chaos. Darkness.

"Your smell says otherwise, Robot." The Dragoon replies simply at the Beetle. "My apologises. I was under a time dilatation spell. You may still follow her, but you will not touch her. Or any one else. Remain as an observer."

Dragoon man loses his footing from the massive swings and crystal explosion Artyom is unleashing down below. Good, ol' Artyom. He's glad more people has shown up, including Kyra and Seloria, as well as Annia. His gaze looks foward them, looking up at the building being smacked. It likely wont like it. At no time his gaze return to Illua.

"We are done here, my friends. Let us go."

With just these words said, Dragoon Man begins to walk toward Alma and Kyra and... well, walking out.
Illua Annia nips at the heels of the Khamja ninjas... the white mage... and the gunner, as they begin to consolidate a retreat. This retreat is going to be going badly, as Artyom unleashes his incredible- and bizarre- attack. The explosion of crystalline brambles rips through the room, and the Khamja agents are forced to discard their shields and weapons as they turn to crystal on impact. The glass exploding everywhere slashes at them as they begin to drop smoke bombs and flee.

Illua, however, is still fighting fit and angry. She's unsure how to react to Seloria, so she can only brace herself- and her dark barrier wavers against the white and red glows, energy which surrounds her before the rippling sound fades away and leaves her ears ringing. As soon as it's done, she's blinking, dodging back and forth to prevent being hit by the brambles, her katana slashing and deflecting the burst of crystals and glass.

Then, as the silence reigns, Alma cuts it again- with a shockwave of crackling holy energy, which she brings the Gran Grimoire up again as a shield. The crackling explosion creates a terrible shockwave, cracking the ground, shaking the walls--
And it actually does TOO much damage. The huge vat begins to sag, the expanding liquid inside finally frozen enough that the metal is about to burst, and the walls are starting to sag...

"It seems as if we've brought the house down," Illua says with a grin. "Enjoy your new lease on life, Alma Hyral. I trust you won't squander it."

And she drops a smoke bomb, allowing her and Khamja to retreat as the masonry and black ice tumbles. This is going to be really difficult to explain to the people of Costa del Sol.
Soan Sagittarius Dragoon Man points backward, not looking back as Illua vanishes through a smoke bomb. "And a Dragoon never forgets the smell of Chaos, Necromancer. Watch your neck."
Seloria Delacreaux Seloria grabs Alma.


That done, she passes one Hyral off to the other Hyral, and wanders off out of the room.
Kyra Hyral Kyra is no longer visible through the hole in the roof. She probably ran off to safer ground in case the building collapsed. Frank had some pretty serious geomancy skills, after all.
Alma Hyral As soon as the explosion occurred, the yellow corona reappeared over herself.

She would stare at the Beetleborg, and saw that it and Dragoon Man had.. made peace.

This was a good thing. She'd have had to intervene otherwise. She could just imagine Feige's finger hovering over a particular button..

The building started to come down around them..

The Nightshade taunted her, and disappeared.. and Alma silently decided that there was no need to press it otherwise. She'd despised even having to fight her in the first place, being a pacifist. She'd simply walk over to Kyra, Seloria, and Dragoon Man.. and she'd just state. "Let's get out of here." As she motioned for Artyom, the GEOID GUARD, and Annia to follow. Seloria hugs her, she'd return the hug and Seloria walks away. Alma lifts a hand to call for her to come with her but...lowers it. Selly always did have moments like this where she needed privacy, and anyhow, she knew where she'd be going anyhow. She'd just continue to follow the others.. leaving the area. And as they left, she'd just state.. "That woman was a complete <GOOSEHONK>."

..later, she'd eat. A lot. She'd been feeling faint from hunger this whole time.
Pumpkinhead "I DIDN'T ASK FOR THIS." The Beetle says without irony before adding, "OH WHEN THE SAINTS, OH WHEN THE SAINTS, OH WHEN THE SAINTS GO MARCHING IN."

It does not argue any of the other terms.


Annia Leradine Annia Leradine is fine with leaving! She runs out after the others, pulling the ribbons back to herself while she races out, and moves toward the exit. When outside, and phews, and pats a hand on top of Alma's head a bit "You're safe now." She states simply. Looks like someone was a little concerned, which doesn't seem to fit with her usual demeanor. Take it while it passes.
Artyom W. Valodjn The battle is won.

Artyom rises from the rubble, his armor still- somehow- more or less in one piece. The colossus is called to follow, however, and so it would not immediately begin napping on the spot as Artyom had planned.

There is likely going to be some sort of... Celebration in order. It is only right to attend.

This scene contained 49 poses. The players who were present were: Pumpkinhead, Seloria Delacreaux, Annia Leradine, Kyra Hyral, Soan Sagittarius, Artyom W Valodjn, Illua, Alma Hyral