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(2013-06-01 - 2013-07-19)
No description.
The Mythril Mines was a once busy area. Much mining was done here until monsters of the area moved in and over took the mines. Now it has become a place that has been abandoned for some time and no one knows what lurks deep down in the old cavern shafts.

However from what reports that could be given there was at least three accessible shafts remaining. One though was known to be used by the Zalom who claimed this massive mining area as part of its territory. This was known to to be the main shaft up on the main ridge.

The other two where much smaller. One which was rather clear but very cramped, while the other was threatening to collapse, but had a bit more space to move through.

Due to also the change of the cave, reported cave ins, and several other timely factors. Many of the old maps may no longer be of use. It be a guess and by gosh. Not forgetting the fact that what once remained here could be fully stripped of any precious materials that may be left.

This was a game of chance.

Are you ready to play?


0Your Choices:
A) Main Tunnel
B) Collapsing Tunnel
C) Tiny Tunnel Tim
D) Let the Dice Decide! (Someone Roll 1d3)

Souji Murasame Mythril.

The rare metal is an essential component in much of Murasame's planned manufacturing. Few metals hold the tensile strength and resilienceto match it, allowing for him to get away with high-performance models with a lower materials overhead. The problem is securing a supply.

A cooperative venture into the Mythril Mines, abandoned by Shinra (who suddenly started paying attention when Souji made it very clear he was going to simply take it if they didn't move), is now going to be reinvested with a merged workforce.

In a gesture of goodwill and cooperation, Souji has come to oversee some of the more tedious parts personally. He also may have a bridge to sell you.

Souji evaluates the reports from the scouting crew, and looks to the others. "The entire point of this exercise is to avoid the Midgar Zolom. However, the alternatives look less than optimal. Valodjn, can you stabilize the collapsing tunnel? If we can make it stable again, we might be able to use it as a conduit into the mines that is Zolom-free."
Artyom W. Valodjn Where there is spelunking to be done, you can bet that there's going to be a dwarf somewhere nearby. Souji Murasame does not employ a dwarf- he employs a Titan. Artyom moves from Souji's entourage to press a hand against the crumbling earth. He makes a sound that is both contemplative and concerned. "It is possible. Repairing this tunnel would not be overly difficult. However, Midgar Zolom likely hunts by tremor-sensing. If I did so too hastily, it could attract the beast."

The colossus glances back toward his boss, one hand reaching into a pouch of geomantic implements slung around his waist. "It is your decision, sir. I can erect new pillars to reinforce the tunnel- and the collapse may have loosened useful resources. This could be... Fruitful- but dangerous."
Kyra Hyral Though the subject of materials engineering was not Kyra's absolute favorite field of science, such topics still played an important part in her schooling. Especially when it came to some of the more advanced medical devices commonly found in hospitals and clinics of Ramuha before the world fell to darkness. Knowledge in this topic only served to strengthen the background of a physician. Mythril in particular had gained quite a bit of noteriety due to its magic conductivity properties.

That aside, more importantly, she knows that Souji has been significantly interested in this mine. It may seem, strangely, that the Hyral sister's tolerance for the Murasame heir were inversely related. Alma had her recent falling out with the Murasame Zaibatsu while Kyra seems to be present at more of Souji's missions. No real cause was identified for this.

"I'm a little shocked to hear you adopting a stance of avoiding the Midgar Zolom, Murasame." Kyra comments from...behind Frank. "It seems it would be better to destroy the creature rather than let it linger as a persistant threat to your operations."
Artyom W. Valodjn Artyom pauses. "By the way, I'm not sure I can fit in the smaller tunnel."
Serah Farron Serah Farron tagged along again. After last time, at least she has the feeling that they aren't completly expandable at least, so could use a bit of money still. She hmms as she creeps along the cave tunnels, not entirely sure what to expect here... So many tunnels, all looking the same... except for the fact some of them look like they might crumble at any moment but what does she know about spelunking, really.

She loosk over to Artyom "... I'm wondering how you ever got through the entrance." She crosses her arms. She apparently missed that event. "And what's a Midgar Zolom?" She apparently never had the displeasure of crossing one, its the first time she comes in these parts in fact.
Caran Steel Mythril. A metal with useful qualities, yes, but... with the industrialization of his own world, it was /available/, for a price, and not something you'd probably need to find a mine for first. Well, at least it's an opportunity for Caran to make himself useful making this world better.

Caran is without his chocobo this time -- not much need for it when flight's not called for. He walks near the front of the party, keeping an eye out for monsters. Learning to fight monsters played an important part in /his/ schooling.

Ketan flies down to his shoulder. "There's no room to fly in that tiny tunnel!" Caran looks over the other two. "I'm not sure magic can get us out of being buried alive. If a cave-in starts and we can't get to my dimension door in time, or I don't aim it just right to hit this tunnel..." he shakes his head. "I know this is /your/ venture, Souji, but... Why can't we just take down the Zolom? I mean... it's going to be a threat to the workers even if this mine gets established around it, right? /Monsters/ are a problem I can solve." <Vote for A!>
Montag Montag was part of the team going into the mines. He darn well knew why it had been left to idle. Still they had a lot of firepower in one form or another so here he is leading a small group of Shinra Troopers and he's just eyeing up the heros and others for a moment. "So yes this place has monster issues." he looks to Caran and coughs once at him. "We're to assist, with cleaning house kid but have tyou seen the Zolem? That thing would just eat you kid."
The collapsing Tunnel was somewhere around twelve to thirteen feet high and about half as wide. It was easy to tell that it was original created by machinery and not by the hands of man. The wooden beams that hold up the rubble from high above are starting to splinter in some parts and crack.

Under closer inspection with light, it could bee seen all the beams all the way through where light would reach were in this shape. Even some showing signs of moss trying to grow on the wood from where water drips down from the tunnel ceiling.

Down further just beyond where the light can't go is two tunnels down there, or so it appears. One tunnel looks in rather bad shape while another seems to be more aiming upward. If there is more tunnels then these two, it be hard to say without going inside and taking a closer inspection.
Souji Murasame "If you want to go head to head against the Midgar Zolom, feel free." Souji replies dryly. "I look forward to you telling me how you countered its regenerative capabilities and flame attack." He turns and heads to stand before the unstable tunnel. "In the meantime, I will be working on an alternative solution until I can solve the problem of the Midgar-Zolom more efficiently. Wasting personnel on such a task is idiotic. All it does is feed the beast and accomplish nothing."

HE looks to Frank. "Valodjn, these timbers are crumpling under the stress. Fix them so we can proceed."
Caran Steel Caran rolls his eyes. "I'm not proposing I fight it /alone/." He takes a few steps towards the collapsing tunnel and looks at the beams, wondering if there's any way his magic can help here. Hmm. Well, there's something else he can do. He conjures a light, and sends it down the tunnel to get a better look at the state further on.
Kyra Hyral "Wait, I change my mind." Kyra says dryly, "I don't want to agree with Steel." After a moment, she continues, "But it is a problem that will need to be dealt with eventually. I'm curious to see what sort of alternative solution you come up with."

Grudgingly, she does have to acknowledge that Souji is pretty smart. Only about a second of thought is put into this before she peers down the tunnel behind them. Silently, she shifts the messenger bag slung over her shoulder so it instead rests in front of her, enabling Kyra to peel back the flap and access the materials within. From inside, she pulls an enormous erlenmyer flask with an ominous-looking black liquid contained within. The flask is firmly stoppered with a black rubber cork.

"Prepare yourself either way. As Frank astutely noted, tremors may attract the Zolom to us."
Serah Farron Serah Farron walks in carefully. Well, if its going to tumble down, that won't help much, but for some reason she is compelled to it anyway, specially under the beams. Artyom might be able to hold the ceiling with his Titan-esque abilities, but she doesn't want to count on that happening either. She's not find of sacrifices.

She stays somehow close to the group as they move along... Noone really answered directly her about the Midgar Zolom, but the way it was described, regenerative flame breathing... sounds like something she wants to stay clear of. "So you think we could find a way that avoid it entirely? These tunnels are stretching pretty deep in here..."
Artyom W. Valodjn "I ducked," Artyom says to Serah before moving into tunnel proper. Old, rotting wood dampens his fingertips as he touches the timbers supporting the decaying passageway. "Will need some work," he whispers to himself, idly brushing at the wet, crumbling dirt. "Water damage as well. May be stream above."

Several dull quartz stones are extracted from his pouch and implanted into the tunnel ceiling. The Titan brings a thumb to his teeth and breaks the skin, leaving a streak of blood along the wood. A brilliant green gemstone glints briefly on his collar, beneath the many layers of his cloak. Crystalline roots creep across the surface of the broken wood, slowly meshing the rotten support with a lattice of robust, if flawed crystal.

Geodes crawl across the inside of the tunnel, moving through the quartz nodes to spread like a nest of brambles. Each support is ensnared as the first. Artyom touches the emerald brambles, transmitting tellurian power through the crystalline roots, merging them with the earth. The tunnel groands as it widens slightly, strengthening enough to allow safe passage.

"It is done," Artyom says after a moment, wrapping his thumb in a sheet of gauze. "It is not quite how grandfather did it, but when you do not have time for proper ritual*, creativity will do."

Creativity and also the help of an Esper.

*Valodjn Geomancy Rituals are also called 'Cheating.'
Caran Steel Caran raises his eyebrows as Artytom /grows crystal all over the tunnel/. "Woah. /That's/ a neat trick. How'd you do that?"
Artyom W. Valodjn "The Valodjn Family rose as a mining concern," Artyom replies, glancing down at the Red Mage, "Ancestral secret."
Montag Montag is moving along keeping with the group his companions look wary, they know about the Zolem being from the region. Those who are not, there may or may not be bets going on over their helmet comms about the most likely adventurer to end up a snack.

The kids from the school are given a kook over a very strange bunch he does nods to Artyom who seems to have done his homeworld on the makeup of the geology of the region.

"Lets worry about that later."
The Collapsing Tunnel with now more light in it showed where rock had been stained by the running water. A few supports down where the two tunnels were had collapsed onto the ground and there was indeed a third, smaller tunnel about half the size of the current one. Around seven feet it would seem.

It unlike the other two tunnels had been built by hand and perhaps had signs by its supports it was more recent. As the boards did not seem to have the structural damage that the ones in the larger tunnel had.

However thanks to the Titan, soon the wood becomes crystal and the tunnel seems to become then much safer then it was before. Someone also may get kissed a few times by the water dripping from above on the tunnel as water seems to find little ways to slip around the cracks.

Now in the main tunnel proper looking at the three choices. It would be hard to determine where to go next. As no feet had traveled here in some time and with one tunnel going up, another directly going forward, and then the small tunnel; all three of them seeming to go further in.

It be now a matter of miny-miney-moe.


0Your Choices:
A) Tunnel Leading Up (Rocky Smooth Incline - Could be Slippery!)
B) Straight Tunnel (It seems pretty dark..)
C) Tiny Tunnel the Sequel (about 7 to 8ft)
D) Let the Dice Decide! (Someone Roll 1d3)

Montag Montag is keepin alert he knoes the region well enough and he does seem a bit impressed at the Titan's power also paying attentiont to the makeup of the place. He pauses for a moment thinks about the applications of such an ability and can see a lot of place where it would work well. Likely one of the reasont he man works for Souji, aside from being a chunk of the upper plate in human form.

"JHumm dependign whereihc way we head we better make sure we got lighting or imaging systems. We don't need to bounce about in the dark." he's not calling the shots here so he'll follow the party lead at this point.
Caran Steel "Huh." Caran comments at Artyom's explanation. And down the tunnel they go! He looks at the three options, and turns to the tunnel up. "That might lead to another entrance... and I've got lights covered." He conjures two more and sends one down each tunnel, up to about several dozen feet, for a better look.
Kyra Hyral Valodjn family secret, eh? This seems to pique Kyra's interest just a little bit more than usual. What sort of curious person could not resist unravelling a 'secret'? Though she will fully believe that it is 'ancestral' since it did require, from what Kyra observed, a drop of Frank's blood to function. In fact, that aspect only interests the white mage even further.

Clearly she needs a genetic sample from the Titanspawn.

She doesn't seem inclined to contribute to which direction they're going-either trusting it to Souji's judgement. Or rather, just following behind Artyom because he is huge and solid.
Serah Farron Serah Farron is also pretty impressed by the display. "What was that magic, geomancy?" She wonders, looking at the crystalized walls in admiration. Its pretty. The water dripping though... looks like not too much to worry about for now. She hmms, and looks at the new choice of tunnels. She ponders "Do we have a compass to know in what general direction we should try to go to? Or would it be simpler and faster to just dig a tunnel... I'm not sure we can follow natural caves, for some reason..." If there was an easy, obvious way, it would have been found long before right? And considering there was wooden beams holding the place up, its easy to deduce that people have been here before.
Souji Murasame "I am not sure." Souji responds to Farron, pssibly echoing his thoughts about the road ahead. "Regardless, I did not have the proper level of resources to deal with the Midgar Zolom, as much as it... irritates me to admit." He shakes his had and turns back to the task at hand. Valodjn summonsup the geomantic power of the Valodjn Family arts, and he smiles thinly to himself. This is the advantage of having a specializt with the proper talents present.

He continues through the tunnels, staying away from the upper inclines as well as the paths back into the tiny tunnel.
The group have chosen the path of B! The path of least resistance.

As they continue to walk down the tunnel they will find here that some of the beams have gotten some metal structure attached to them. It seems this area of the tunnel is in better shape then the actual entrance, however one path has been blocked off completely, as if someone attentional used explosives to block it off.

Then in red letters something is written on the wall. It reads very clearly: 0Fear The Latern.

The tunnel continues on, with the support beams still staying in rather good shape. This should be rather easy trip for now!
Caran Steel Caran stops and reads the sign. "...Well, that doesn't sound like it leads to another /entrance/." He starts walking on, sending his light down the tunnel ahead of him.
Suddenly the ground shakes ahead of Caran and parts of the floor start to collapse. The rocks that tumble down can be heard clanking across the canyon walls before hitting what sounds to be water.
Artyom W. Valodjn "Geomancy," Artyom replies to Serah's inquiry. Water drips across Artyom's brow as he stoops under a gemstone support. He regards his handiwork with a pleasant smile, "It is nice to be underground again, regardless of any deadly serpents that dwell in these tunnels." Indeed, spelunking is like second nature to a man of the great mountain! Or at least, for a Valodjn. Strange that people so tall prefer places that are so cramped.

Perhaps each Valodjn is looking for just the right tunnel. The tunnel made just for them.

Or maybe that's just rumor and hearsay.

They move into a more... Sturdy region. Artyom regards the supports with quiet respect. Whoever built these made them to last, certainly. And then, there's a sign. "Oh." Artyom says at the sign. "That is a bad thing. Fear lanterns." Artyom murmurs, mulling the information over in his mind. And then there is a look of dawning realization. "Oh. /Oh."

"Tonberries." The word. The word is spoken like a curse. A terrible, withering curse. "We are not going this way--" The earth starts to rumble. Artyom reaches for his weapon, the massive sword across his shoulder. "There is more than the Zolom in these tunnels. If you see strange lights, move away as fast as you can. Do not let them reach you. Destroy the source if you can- but only if you are able to do so fast enough."

"Do not tempt the Tonberries."
Caran Steel "Woah!" Caran shouts and jumps back as the ground shakes, then watches rock tumble into the darkness. "That was close...!" He frowns, and kneels by the edge to examine the hole and shaft more closely. "...Was this natural, or a trap?"
Kyra Hyral "Real Tonberries?" Kyra says once Frank has spoken the dreaded t-word, her tone a mixture of horror and fascination. "We've heard rumors of those in the sewers before but...those were just urban legends." Or maybe not. Kyra never ventured deep enough into the Ramuha sewers to find out. Especially not after Tira died.

Her hand tightens around the mysterious flask she holds onto. The other moves to hover over the plug nervously as she peers back and forth. "Different tunnel, then."
Serah Farron Serah Farron blinks at the talk around her. Tonberries? She heard the stories, but she never saw any before. She's curious... but she's not too fond of goign straight into danger either like that "Uhm, I guess that's for the best then, yes..." She agrees with the others, moving along to the next tunnel... "I heard about absorbing darkness with their lanterns and expanding it in mortal knife attacks..."
As Caran Steel peers down the somewhat hole now in the tunnel floor. His light will show the reflection of the water below, but also several gold eyes peering right back up at him. Including one that seems to have a-- fishing pole?

Suddenly several of these golden eyes turn away and seem to waddle away into tunnels. The one with the fishing pole just keeps staring up at Caran, before it raises something along side it, which then flickers with bright light as if the very creature is peering right back at him.

Then it too, starts to pack up its fishing rod and waddle off into the tunnels near that area. There seems to be at LEAST five tunnels that are around the same size as the smaller tunnels they keep encountering.

As Sarah starts to head back. She then will start to see flickerings of fire within something swinging side to side down the tunnel that they came from. Including in the small tunnel starting to lead into the main area.


0Your Choices:
A) Hold L1+R1 (FLLEEE)
B) Try to go Up the possible slippery tunnel.
C) Fight the Tonberries!
D) Jump down into the water below.
E) Try to run around the collapsed floor.
F) Collapse Tiny Tunnel the Sequel and Take on less Tonberries.
G) Try to Negotiate (Speak Tornberrize?)
H) Bend over and Kiss the ground.

Montag Montag does not like Tonberris they were real nightmare fuel and well now they are here and this can have nothing good coming forth from this. He's making his weapon ready and his men are clearly uneasy as they wait for those in charge to make their call. They got a plan of their own but thats only if everyone else gets killed first. Kinda bad to run out ont he people your suposed to help after all.

"We need to find a way to try to avoid engaging thse things if we can..."
Artyom W. Valodjn Artyom has a rule, it is this: <GOOSEHONK> Tonberries.

The colossus' eyebrow twitches anxiously as all those many, many golden eyes appear out of the darkness. This is in fact a scene from one of Artyom's few nightmares. Being trapped in a dark, narrow corridor with a dozen Tonberries is terrifying for any experienced miner, especially one who has as much trouble with mobility in tight spaces as Artyom. And so, he promptly decides to deal with the issue on a more permanent basis.

"Back away from the tunnel," Artyom roars, unsheathing his massive, stone sword. "Collpasing opening! Will reclaim later- with flamethrowers!" He twists, swinging the sword through the air. Mysteriously, it passes seamlessly through the tunnel ceiling, leaving the soil undisturbed in its wake. Until, that is, it bisects the stone over the tiny tunnel, sending a precise pulse of tectonic power in a line across the ceiling. His blade slams into the ground, releasing a wave of crystalline growth that extends toward the advancing tonberries like a wall of pikes. "Behind cover," the Titan commands, "Disable them without getting in range of the Doink. Delay Tonberry advance with whatever you can!"
Souji Murasame Souji moves forward through the tunnels, and he notes the warning. "Tonberries." Souji says, though more in irritation than hatred like Valdojn. "The gods mock us tonight." Souji says with only light sarcasm. "They're foes to be reckoned with."

He moves forward, on his guard through the tunnel and watching for a sign of the dreaded opposition. Caran gets it. "STEEL!" Souji calls, as he almost ends up dropping into a wet place full of stabby death.

Unfortunately, he's also aggroed the tonberries onto the rest of the group. "Tch!" Souji says, grimacing. "We don't have much choice. IF we can't make these tunnels safer enough to traverse, it is useless for our needs."

Artyon comes up with a good plan. Souji nods. "Good work. I will attempt to hold them back. Everyone, focus fire and destroy the closest ones as quickly as possible."

The Murasame heir spins, drawing the ill-aspected weapon of his family. "Murasame, it is time to feed."

The black katana gleams, perhaps in an anticipated hunger.
Kyra Hyral 'Back away from the tunnel.' Kyra does so immediately. She, honestly, does not need to be told twice to avoid Tonberries. There are clips on Moogle Video of those things she can NEVER UNSEE.

She scoots backwards, far behind Artyom, as he gets to work collapsing the deadly tunnel behind them. For a brief moment she's struck with the claustrophobic tought of this cutting off their only way out, but she quickly banishes it. There were other tunnels here. They would get a way out. Souji...well, he might have a problem with owning a mine filled with tonberries.

From within her hoodie, she withdraws what turns out to be a straight-up dart gun of some kind. Perhaps she upgraded-or this could be a different weapon from the one that typically shoots vials filled with napalm. A few darts filled with glowing green liquid are already loaded in it.

Casually, and without any warning, she shoots Souji with it. The substance loaded into the dart, while beneficial, was also pretty unpredictable. It is, also, fortunately NOT derived from anything Kyra made in the kitchen.
Serah Farron Serah Farron didn't need to be told, she was already moving away from the tunnel before Artyom announced his intentions. She coughs a bit as the ceiling collapses, and lifts up so much dust and dirt in the process... "Did we get all of them?" She doesn't want to wait for an answer though, and moves toward the next tunnel, backing up. "I got a bad feeling about this..."

Just because Caran has a pet that can talk to anything doesn't mean he immediately thinks of that solution. Instead... He backs away. He's about to call for everyone to get out of here, when Artyom takes action. The Tonberries can't possibly miss that SHOUTING. "What the..." So. They have to be killed /quickly/, huh?

Caran sheaths his sword and holds out his hand. Dark power crackles above his palm. "Fragment of darkest black, break free from the cosmos!" The power strikes his hand, like lightning arcing between the two points, then continues to crackle, in a line now. "Blade of nothingness, colder than the coldest ice! Behold my power!" The dark lightning grows thicker, resembling a jagged tear in reality held in Caran's hands like a giant sword. "Cut through all who stand in my way! Giant-slaying sword! BLAAACK BLAAADE!"

The lightning-like energy coalesces into a clear, straight-edged shape -- a sword of pure blackness that reflects no light, held in Caran's hand. The red mage moves up to stand next to Souji. "Let's do this. We know how they fight, all we have to do is kill them too fast for them to stab us!" But is that as easily said as done?
The Titan closes off the Tiny Tunnel, which may force the Tonberries from that direction to go another place. Yet those who were unfortunate Tonberries perhaps got crushed by the collapsing ceiling. This probably does not help their karma level any.

However the ones that came around from the main entrance continue to move forward. Their little lanterns swinging. Their gold eyes staring at all of them. Their steps were small. Short. Yet they were advancing very, very slowly. It was the little Tonberry shuffle.

Moving carefully around the pikes, some even give them a curious look of fascination. Some even see if they can actually remove a chunk or two with the little picks they make.

Yet when Souji pulls out his sword, the Tonberries all seem to suddenly directly focus on him. The pikes of crystal forgotten about. Those who were angered by the Titan's transaction even more so now.

Their laterns suddenly glow more brightly and the knives are slowly drawn out. They all do this. At the /Exact/ same time.

They have still have a chance to run. They can stand their ground and fight, but it may be to late to reason now. The purpose has perhaps been made very clear to the Tonberries.

0Three Rounds remaining
Serah Farron Serah Farron can see the gold eyes through the dust cloud... oh dear. "Guess not..." She answers herself, and gets ready for battle. She still doesn't have a weapon, but she can use magic at least. So that's what she starts with. She summons the enhanging magic is part of her 'book', spreading it over to Artyom and Souji... who seems to be two physical fighters at least. It should help out.
Caran Steel Caran is ready for battle now! "Okay, that's creepy." he comments, as the tonberries draw their blades in synch. "You can do it, guys!" Ketan encourages, taking off from Caran's shoulder to hover in the air just above them.

Caran takes a deep breath. This is a weapon made of /magic/. It is wielded as much with the mind as it is with the hand. And so he focuses on his intent: To utterly destroy these creatures, to end their threatening existance. Let the nothingness eat away at them, leave them vulnerable to his allies! He holds that thought in his head, and the blade's edges become ragged as if it were wrathed in black fire, and he... runs forward, slashing at one of the tonberries with the sword made of nothing (more reach than their daggers, he hopes!) and then leaping back to safety!
Souji Murasame It might have been different if Souji had brought someone who could speak Tonberry. Like Thirza. Thirza speaks Tonberry, which translates to 'not dying that one time she got stabbed while trying to hug it'. It was kind of impressive.

Regardless, Murasame nods to Caran as he summons up his own weapon. The creation of the Black Blade causes him to pause for a moment, blinking, before he wrenches his attention back to the situation at hand. He can't afford distractions. "I will not allow monsters to prey upon my workers." Souji states, simply. Kyra then promptly shoots him in the back with a syringe of SCIENCE. Souji blinks as he feels the impact, and then he pulls out the dart and looks at it, before tossing the empty thing to the ground and nodding to Kyra in appreciation. He looks over to te Tonberries as the protective magic from Serah spreads over him, forming a hexagonal defense field as he drops into a combat stance.

"Kill them quickly!" Souji says, before he faces the oncoming grudgebearers. He lashes out, an intense pressure wave rushing down the tunnel to try to slow the advance of the Tonberries. He slashes out repeatedly, lines of void arcing outwards with crackling lightning to shear through the space that the enemies occupy. He strikes rapidly, creating a series of lines that explode into blasts of cascading thunder that clings and burns.
Artyom W. Valodjn Normally, Artyom would take a moment to catch his breath and focus his thoughts before charging into the mouth of danger. Unfortunately, there are more important things to take care of right now: there are things in front of him that are decidedly Not Dead that really should be Dead. A Titan Miner does not suffer a Tonberry to live, except under very, very specific circumstances. Thankfully, a burst of white magic from the girl Artyom knows best as Dragonius' Hanger-On bolsters his body, earning a quiet gesture of thanks from the Titan.

Artyom maintains his distance, his feet planted squarely on the ground. "Monsters," he growls, stabbing his stone sword into the earth. The land underfoot quavers, a pulse of light surges up the crystalline pikes, causing them to twitch and gleam with dangerous purpose. He lunges forward, directing the crystalline lances to advance with a sudden burst of motion, impaling what Tonberries he can, and obstructing their progress where he cannot.

Wounds opened by the pikes begin to... close? Very rapidly, in fact. But not with flesh- the gashes are knit with hungry, infectious crystalline growths!
Kyra Hyral Kyra merely gives Souji a curt nod when he looks back at her. Inwardly, she actually feels a bit of relief that she wasn't met with some disapproving stare for injecting him with an unknown substance. The substance must've had a very positive effect on her fellow Ramuha-a good thing, really, because against a group of tonberries they will all need all the edge they can get. Though they do move slow, there are people in this group that don't necessarily have the luxury of very long range attacks. Not like Kyra does at least.

Shaking, she jams a new dart into the gun, her fingers fumbling with the projectile. Before continuing, she forces herself to take a breath and calm down. Panicking would mean a lack of aim and a lack of aim was something she did not need to entertain right now.

Frank receives the next dart, this one to the back of his neck since he is pretty armored everywhere else right now. It's actually a much harder shot to achieve than the one she just took on Souji for that reason, despite the latter's incredible speed.
Montag Montag checks his gear one last time before he makes some perperations if they are going to have to fight these things they better be ready but the slow staggering doom comes towards them. The weight of everything one has ever harmed bearing down upon them.

"Fight them at range, if we have to fight. If we don't ... they will rip you apart close up!"

Montag it frankly scared deep down he's heard stories and then Souji is going to need help he loads his weapon and sighs as he's going to move in to support his comrades. This was going to suck he looks over to Kyra and moves in to give her a bit of cover. He keeps an eye on Frnak not sure if he's brave or lacks any sort of surival drive?

"That guy is brave or looking for a place to die..."
Helena Celba Without warning, the hands of a stranging fall on Souji's back.

They are percise movements, made to redirect the flow of Chi and magical power, dark magic works through his body, but not to Invigor.

Panting, Helena looks cross. "Gawd guys, I am five minutes late and you leave me to find you on my own. Seriously, you are so not nice to me." she says, playfully. She dances away from Tonberries, as she points at them, "Scary. Best not point that knife at me, little guys, or I will turn you into reagents, okay? <3"

She runs by Kyra, "Hi~" but moves to lay her gentle carress on the back of Caran, doing the same technique to him as she did to Souji, she might linger a bit, "Hey Caran, long time no see...I heard you finished your big project?" She says, coversationally.

Then to Frank, "Hey Frank, be with you in just a moment.." she comments, ignoring Serah completely.

The red mage attacks with his magic blade and the Tonberry uses his lantern to counter-act the magical spell. The swing of the sword seems to hit some unknown barrier. It was as if the Tonberry was silently asking Steel if he really wanted to do this.

Souji then attack comes in and not only knocks a few Tonberries back, but also angers them even more. Their lanterns swing and in return dark spheres of light fly right at Souji trying to return the favor with a bit of pain along with it.

Arty is the next who attacks. The Pikes crush several Tonberries and knock them back. They cast out a spell of regret at the Titan, trying to bring misery to him for his transaction against their kind in the Tiny Tunnel.

Yet they keep on coming and they don't seem to be stopping. They don't even attack back yet. They just keep waddling toward everyone. Even a few pause to stare at the healers, yet-- they seem to ignore them for now.

0Two Turns Left...
Caran Steel Caran's swqord of darkness is stopped by... a light. He hopes that was luck, and not a GLARING WEAKNESS in his penultimate spell. Does he want to do this? Well, he's sure not letting these monsters kill his friends! After losing his whole world, he's not losing them too! "Raaagh! Die!" Caran focuses, and swings again! Come on, black blade! Cut through that barrier, whatever it is!
Helena Celba Helena gets ignored, "Well, fine. See if I help you again." She says, in a huff towards Caran. Jerk. He better hope Kyra likes him because HELENA sure isn't going to do anything else for him...well, she might push him infront of the Tonberries.

"HEY FRANK! KILL FASTER!" she says, punching the back of the head of the giant man, litterally leaping up from a running leap to do so.

Dark energies infuse his body, rewinding damage and giving him a BOOST of energy as Chi unlocks...

She lands next to Montag, and does the same. He might actually feel the punch though.

"Try and stand infront of me, okay? <3" She says, and runs back over to Kyra, "Hi," she says, "So nice weather we're having, right?
Serah Farron Serah Farron doesn't have much offensive power in this state sadly, but she can keep buffing up the party. That's the oddity with her abilities, when she can heal she can't attack it seems. Its like an on/off switch, she can't understand it exactly, but she learn to use it at least. She waves a hand, and makes a circle of red magical energies under the combattants "Don't give up now, we still have time!"
Artyom W. Valodjn Artyom's assault is rebuffed by an enervating pulse of utter despair. The Titan cringes briefly as he feels the tenebrous tendrils start worming their way into his thoughts--

And then Kyra shoots him up with so many happy drugs that all those awful ideas are banished right back into the ether. Thank you caffiene derivatives!

"No rush," Artyom replies sardonically in Helba's general direction, "Only need to outrace impending tide of viridian, knife-wielding death goblin-hnng!" Dark power merges with Serah's earlier infusion of white magic and Kyra's chemical cocktail to create something... Potentially unstable inside the Titan.

A visual of two diametrically opposing forces meeting in an Erlenmeyer flask would, were this some kind of MMORPG and not a fight for everyone's life, briefly appear over Artyom's head. The flask would then boil over and explode in a brilliant display of antipodal power mixing into solution with a powerful chemical brew to create something truly spectacular.

Artyom proceeds to say absolutely nothing. He may, however, be vibrating. He is definitely vibrating. The crystal pikes are singing because Artyom is vibrating.

And then they explode, unleashing a rather catastrophic cavalcade of sharp, pointy doom right into the Tonberry line.

Artyom is still vibrating.
Kyra Hyral "Hey Helena." Kyra castually offers. "Could be rainier."

They're getting closer. She sees some of the Tonberries curiously staring her way and she shudders. Rumor had it these creatures targeted the most bloodthirsty first. Though they'd start with the likes of Souji, Frank, and Caran who are actively attacking them, once they are down...she would be next.

Kyra holsters her gun and clasps her hands together. "Everyone get down!" she calls out, the magical energy inside of her surging wildly-almost uncontrollably for those attuned enough to notice. Kyra grits her teeth, ignoring the pain concentrating such power quickly starts to cause to her shaking hands.

In a flash, it becomes clear she cannot contain the magic any longer and a scathing, crackling blast of light issues forth in a beam that has the diameter equal to that of Kyra's height. Anything caught in the blast is vaporized.
Souji Murasame Helena appears and gives Souji a Chi boost. He nods to her. "Celba. Keep it up." He says. Any help is good help at this point. The spheres of darkness and light strike back at him then, and he reels, lightning sparking off of him as he grunts from the impact. "Well then." Souji hisses. "If that's how it's going to be..." He says, before he lashes out with a series of gleaming crescent waves of multicolored energy, a corona that crashes down upon the tonberry assault team.
Montag Well now it seems that it's time to fight, he doesn't like ot but he lowers his arm and gives the command.

"Open fire!"

Montag and his men open fire trying to bring teh beasts down he knows at this point things are going to get bad. Very bad even as some form of magic unknown to him. The machine guns of his men rattle away while Montag aims to snipe off some of the lead tonberries trying to cover the melee righters where he can like Caran.

Serah Farron Serah Farron notices that she was not helping out one of her teammates. Was Montag with us from the begining? She needs to pay more attention to teammates and less to glowing golden eyes in the dark...

Even if noone would blame her for it in this case @_@

She reaches out to apply the same helpful enhancing magic to Montag too "They are getting closer!"
More Tonberries go down. Yet they keep marching on. From Caren's attacks, to Souji, to even 'Frank'. Each of their attacks compounding on the other. Yet the Tonberries keep on walking. They get ever closer. Ever more dangerously closer.

Then Kyra breaks out the heavy firepower and actually shoves a few Tonberries back however, they suddenly march on forward. Their little waddling continues to progress forward. They be on the heroes soon and their little knives glint in the light.

Then Montag's men unleash and yet-- they keep still coming! Even after a few get taken down with a few headshots.

Waddle Waddle Waddle.

As for those Tonberries who had fallen, their bodies start to shimmer before they seem to vanish and their energy seems to be absorbed by the very Tonberries who remain. Yet from a head count, there numbers have thinned out a great deal.

It wouldn't be much longer now, right?

One could only image what this be like if they didn't collapse that one tunnel! They have to do with a whole mess of them then!

0Last Turn!
Helena Celba Helena turns...

No time left...

She dives in at the Tonberries, ignoring everything else. She's done all she can do for them...

Darkness surges through her as she moves towards the first, striking right towards it's Heart, then again...and again, each strike is purposeful, and measured...she isn't, however, only striking at them physically, she is looking to hurt their very souls, trying to drail the spiritual energy around them, and draining it back into her...

And then leaps back, graceful as a cat. Darkness explodes from the release...aiming to rend both flesh and soul once more, making an opening for her allies.
Artyom W. Valodjn No time left.

No time.

No time.

Then, Artyom wonders, why in Diablos' furious facade is everything moving so slowly? Everything seems to draw to a crawl in the Titan's eyes. The Tonberries move slower even than Tonberries should normally move. His compatriots, fast as they may have become, seem to have dropped to walking speed.

Artyom does not understand. He tries to comprehend, only to find himself thinking about far too much in much too small of a span of time.

The answer Artyom does not consider is that the mixture of magic and chemistry burning through his body has driven him to some... Heightened state of consciousness. For a few shining moments, Artyom W. Valodjn is not a man among other men, but a great spirit among mere mortals.

And in that brief moment, Artyom hoists his weapon high.

He breathes, wisp-like vapors drifting out from the corners of his mouth. They rise, twisting in black and white spirals as he lets his weapon's cutting edge fall toward the Tonberries.

He vanishes- in an instant, he reappears somewhere on the other end of the Tonberry advance.

In between, all is tranquil-- for approximately a half a second. And then the ground splits, the land twists itself apart- a subterrannean supernova shoots through the earth, blasting into the Tonberry Swarm. Ten, then twenty, then a hundred creases cut into earth and Tonberry alike where Artyom's sword had passed.

At the end of it, Artyom is... No longer vibrating. So much.
Souji Murasame The Murasame Heir gets the hell out of the way as Kyra unleashes her massive gun strike. He's not getting in her line of fire. Souji grimaces as more karmic backlash strikes Souji in response to his attack. He grunts. "They're getting too close... We're not doing enough." He says, narrowing his eyes. "They're getting stronger from the ones who are falling. If we don't finish them all off quickly, we're going to have problems."

Souji raises his blade, and he lunges, blasting the Tonberries away again with another pressure strike, before he turns and makes a single, deadly iaijutsu-style slash. The air shimmers for a moment, before the tunnel erupte in St. Elmo's fire, blasting outwards to engulf the oncoming Tonberries!
Caran Steel Finally! Now they're making progress. Tonberries fall... but, their allies seem to /absorb/ them somehow. "We can do this... we've got to be able to do this!" He waits back as his allies leap in and attack, then... runs into the fray himself! Slashing at one tonberry, then the next, with the sword that mere /contact/ with tries to eat away at and consume them. This penultimate power based on forgotten magic... it /has/ to be enough! How can it not be enough?!
Kyra Hyral "There's too many of them-" Kyra heathes a breath, looking over to Frank with concern. He kept shaking-and the power flowing through him-at this rate Kyra was worried he'd experience some sort of catastrophic molecular breakdown on the spot. His words don't seem to calm her much either.

Kyra takes notice suddenly of what looks like...weakness, torn open by Helena. The darkness had left marks upon them and Kyra can see their spiritual energy leaking away. That must've given them time.

"I'm giving it another go!" Kyra says, summoning up the magical energy once more. There's decidedly less than before, though, but Kyra seems to be experiencing just as much difficulty controlling it. Fatigue, perhaps?
Serah Farron Serah Farron is seeing the golden eyes getting closer... those lanterns... that dark feeling surrounding them, like impending doom about to jump into her brain directly. She shivers, and its like a shadow goes over her eyes, just a moment lapsing out it seems, as if panic was hitting her without makin gher move or react.

Instead... she just lets out a scream, directed straight at the tonberries, unleashing what latent magical power and stored energies in a single blow, a wave of magical fire that ripples right over the tonberries, rebounding over the walls, which would increase the damage... if they aren't immune to that kind of magic of course. Which... could be bad at this point.
Montag Montag is barking orders and backing up a bit as are his men. Every second they can keep the monsters off them the better. He knows what's going to happen if they close and he has no doubts that had and his men will crumple like cards if those monsters bring their knives into play against them. they contiune fireing trying to rbign them down but it is too late? He has no idea but running would mean death that's forsure.
The Tonberries were getting so close. They were about upon the workers of Souji's and allies alike. However there sheer power and great healings (along with mana drainings) were to much for the little Tonberries. They all started to fall over. One by one.

The last one to stand was able to halt Frank's attack in mid-stride as it was using its karma alts to do so, however it soon was also taken out from behind. Its little gold eyes went wide, staring at the Titan, before a single tear ran down its face and then crashed onto the ground.

Soon all the little tonberries bodies started to glow before their wisps formed a massive ball of essence which suddenly went past the ground, down into the hole in the floor earlier that Steel nearly dropped into and then vanished down into the dark tunnels below.

However what remained on the ground was one rolled parchment of some kind made of leather. What was inside the parchment? One would need to break the magic seal to find out.
Caran Steel Caran slices through tonberries, and turns to face the last once... watching it fall. And then an energy ball just floats down the hole in the floor. "/That's/ not ominous." He comments. And then... hey, scroll thingy! He lets his sword dissipate -- the edges grow ragged and then it goes away like a black flame with no fuel left -- and he makes a 'come here' gesture at the scroll, trying to levitate it in front of him and analyze the magic on the seal if he can.
Helena Celba Helena suddenly glomps Kyra from behind. How did she even get there?

Artyom W. Valodjn A Tonberry sheds a single Tonberry Tear. Artyom would have felt a pang of guilt at seeing it, if he had seen it- or, indeed, if he was capable of doing anything at the moment besides staring at his hands.

Artyom's form vibrates. It seems to wobble- not his knees, or his legs, but everything. Every particle of matter making up his body seems to jitter in place. "Eternity-- I can see--" the Titan says--

And then the Titan vanishes.

Thirty seconds later, Artyom is standing where he had been standing, moments before Kyra, Helba and Serah shot him up with more antagonistic magical energy than a single body could reasonably process.

The Titan blinks, his eyelids suddenly very heavy. He looks to Souji, and then asks: "...What happened to the Tonberries? Why do I-- Why do I taste /purple?/"
Serah Farron Serah Farron phews and slumps backward, ending up sitting down, as if drained out of her energies after what happened. She's quivering even, as if she had found her deepest fear. This was not a pleasant feeling... But at least... they are defeated.

She just wants to get out of here now.
Sorry Caran. You can't make heads or tails of this magic seal. Try your luck next time!
Caran Steel Caran frowns. "There's some kind of magic on it." The scroll floats over into the middle of the group, while he turns to Artyom. "Um... What just happened to you?" Hey, any funny magic on Artyom? Or, heck, the rest of the party for that matter?
Helena Celba The magic on Artyom is the one from Helena. This is pretty standard stuff, even if her magic is pretty not standard.

Helena, being someone who practices magic, tries her hand at the thing.
Artyom W. Valodjn "I-- do not know," Artyom says to Caran, shaking his head. "I do not know. I remember seeing /something./ Something..."

His eyes turn to the scroll.

Artyom reaches out, and touches it.
Souji Murasame Souji looks over the Tonberries, and their spirits gathering up to descend to a new host. Whoever encounters the King those are going to will have a very Bad Time later on. He turns away from the vanishing Tonberries, and shakes his head. "We've dealt with the threat." He says. What's this, a lack of empathy for a bunch of murderous monsters? Gasp.

Souji looks back over the others. "You helped destroy the Tonberries, Valodjn. We're going to need you to block off this hole and shore it up so this doesn't happen again." He looks up again. "You have all done well. With any luck, we can reestablish an underground path to the Mythril Mines through this area and make it safe for travel."
Arty has the magic touch!

The seal is broken and the leather scroll loosens itself. On the parchment contains maps drawn on it. Maps off all the tunnel ways here within the Mines. Including areas that have been circled and odd little Tonberry languages written here and there with arrows pointing at places.

Including what looks like directions to--

An underground city?!

Or maybe-- it was something else. Yeah. That had to be it right?
Artyom W. Valodjn A little static shock shoots up into Artyom's fingertip, causing his arm to jolt back from the scroll as it unfurls. He frowns, shaking the weird tingling sensation out of his hand. "Mmn," Artyom says to his Boss, "Very well. I will get on it as soon as possible."
Kyra Hyral Helena will notice that Kyra is still shaking a little! Just slightly, she slumps in the necromancer's gasp, her breathing a bit more laborious than usual. That particular experience- "-let's not do that again" she says, squirming at the teenager who ambushed her.

Frank seems to 'come to' and Kyra breathes a sigh of relief. "Gone, Frank, all gone. It's alright now. Well, mostly. As alright as a group where we are can be!" she pauses, "...I think the stimulant I gave you was a little too strong. I might have to take some blood later, just to be sure."
Montag Montag sees the tonberries a4re dead or fleed far as he can tell. he wondders just what happned to them when they fel but he's got no desire to poke at it he and his men look frankly relized from the sounds of it. He doesn't hate the Tonberriers they generally cause no trouble it's prehaps theior own fault either way the battle is over now.

"No losses, I can live with that..."
Caran Steel Caran's rush of adrenaline finally wears off, and he looks winded, leaning against the tunnel wall. That took a lot out of him. "Glad to hear it, Souji..." Ketan lands in the red mage's arms and nuzzles him affectionately.
Serah Farron Serah Farron slowly moves back to her feet, still a bit shakily "So we got what we wanted? Can we get out of here now?" She doesn't want to meet other Tonberries... or worse.
Artyom W. Valodjn Artyom regards Kyra with a... Strange look. "I see. I- I see, well. That is good." Beat. "Is it normal to taste colors?"
Kyra Hyral "This is, in fact, not a normal thing, Frank." Kyra says soothingly. There's a worried look in her eyes. "I believe the technical term for that is 'tripping out.'"
Helena Celba Helena continues to hold Kyra. "Eh, it's okay, they didn't..." And she looks at Frank. "Eh, it'll be alright."
Artyom W. Valodjn "Oh," Artyom frowns, looking rather concerned at himself. "I hope there are no further side effects." Another beat. "Maybe I should take a short vacation after we deal with these tunnels."
Souji Murasame Souji walks over and looks over the map to Frank's side (because even Souji can't read over Frank's shoulder), and he nods. "A map... Excellent. We can use this." He pauses, tapping at the 'city'. "That will need to be investigated later."

He looks over at the others. "If you all wish to retire to the Ame-no-Torifune to heal and recuperate, you are welcome."
Kyra Hyral Kyra doesn't seem to be surprised she's still neing grabbed by Kyra. As if this was a typical state of affairs around the necromancer when around. She continues talking-or in this case, nodding gravely at Frank, before going on to the next topic.

""You heard your boss. You ought to rest and recouperate."
Caran Steel Caran nods. "Thanks. Just a... Just a moment." He catches his breath, resting against the wall for a few moments, then stands again, following the others out to the ship.

This scene contained 85 poses. The players who were present were: Montag, Oblivion, Kyra Hyral, Souji Murasame, Artyom W Valodjn, Serah Farron, Helena Celba, Caran Steel