Scene Listing || Scene Schedule || Scene Schedule RSS
No title.
(2013-06-05 - 2013-06-18)
No description.
Riku Lower Archades -- It was a humble place, a place where many people start with the dream of making it to the upper level. Most never reach it. It is a place where information is money, and money is power. The people here range from honest, industrious folk to the dregs of society who would slit anyones throat for the right price. Dirty little secrets pass through wagging tongues every day and many of these tongues are silenced.

Imperial Judges and Soldiers are a rarity here except at the checkpoint for Upper Archades for they came only when there are cries for help, and these cries for help are rarely heard.

It wasnt the most ideal place for two adolescent girls to start. Even though Alma and Kyra Hyral were remarkably talented individuals for their age, their talents lay in science and magic. Alma might have made a fortune here with her healing magic, save for the fact that she was too principled.. she wouldnt charge to anyone in need.

For that reason, she was left alone. Even low lifes knew that you didnt mess with someone who would offer free medical care and healing, no questions asked, to anyone. If not for that.. her life might have been much worse.

However, the girls did still need to live, still needed to afford a place of their own. And so Alma worked many odd jobs, taking shifts as a cook at the local inn. Shed definitely spiced up the life of the regulars there..

But regardless of how good she was as either a healer or a chef, she was an honest, hard worker.. and that didnt generally get you moved up in the world quickly. Her take was usually a meager one compared to Kyras. She didnt know how the other girl was managing to earn so much more than her..

After one of those days of taxing work in the kitchen.. shed gone home, cleaned up, changed. Grabbed her things.. and went out to the docks. Tonight she was wearing a simple white mage robe, with a red triangular trim. Her hair was allowed to flow down freely, suprising in its fell just below her waist.

All of Lower Archades sat in the shadow of Upper, and yet shed still managed to find one place where she could gaze at the heavenly bodies of her creation. The seaport was not so fully covered that she couldnt at least see some of the sky.

She collimated her telescope obsessively. It didnt need to be done every night, but it was one ritual she was meticulous about. It had to be perfect..

And then she sat there on a small stool shed brought with her, looking through lens, as it made the stars of her empyrean majesty that much clearer.. Tonight, it wasnt for research, it was for her own enjoyment. Still, she had a little device, about the size of a cell phone attached to her wrist, with a touch screen. Every so often shed touch it, and adjust the screen with her thumb and forefinger, looking to double check the charts on the view screen to what she was observing.

To the casual onlooker, she was quite heedless of her surroundings
Riku Sometimes, Upper Archades was just too much.

In some respects, lower Archades was much more like what home used to be like except on a much grander scale. There are a great amount of people there but they don't hold themselves with the same air that the people above seem to favor. It's a world of small triumphs and whispers and extended connections. Where Upper Archades is about who you know, Lower Archades is about connections. The guy who knows a guy who knows-- etc. And Riku has had a little experience with this in keeping tabs on the Shard Seekers in Fluorgis.

Still nothing about the things he wants to hear about. Just things that may be useful to know later, or not at all and the undercurrents of gossip that flows and ebbs around the lower quarters like the tides. Sometimes Riku regrets not picking the 9th Bureau and having at least rudimentary access to their information but-- he saw where that path went, and was not entirely welcome to the idea of following in the echoing wake of those decisions.

Still-- there was one piece of information that was curious because in the city that needed so desperately healers, someone willing to do so for free. Not for money or information, was something to follow up on just out of sheer curiosity. There was a moment's hope that-- no. He knew better than that. He knew exactly where that train of thought went. Could pin it down so precisely as to see it squirm like a bug on a mounting board.

It never went anywhere good.

Riku knows how to handle himself in places like this, and after the first half dozen attempts people gave him just a moment's pause before deciding they had business to attend to somewhere else. The teenager wore simple clothes in blue and yellow, nothing that would attract attention. Wandering along the seaport on his way back towards the elevator, he notices Alma setting up and pauses for a few moments, taking in the robes. He digs a black journal from his pocket and checks on his notes, raising his eyebrows slightly before putting it away again. He thought he remembered what those robes meant. It could possibly not be them, but the style of dress was not common here and so there was an off chance that it might be.

Only one way to find out.

Riku approached, staying a good distance away and tracking the line of the telescope up with some surprise to the unobscured sky. "Good evening." he hmms softly. "Usually don't see many people out here at night. I didn't think there was a patch of sky anywhere in Lower Archades."
Riku She wasnt used to being interrupted during her stargazing. It was her time, one of the few things she solely for fun and pleasure.. well, not entirely. There was her research, but that was simply an extension of it.

One of the benefits to making a hobby out of this, was enjoyment of the solitude. This went doubly so for her, as since she regarded this avocation as an extension of worship, it brought her a sense of tranquility.

The greeting startled her out of her that. And the boy would notice her previous poise melting away into perturbation. In Lower Archades, for a girl her age, she had plenty to fear from the alleys at night. While she had enough of a reputation that she was generally left alone, she might still be subject to the predations of individuals who simply did not know, or did not care. It wasnt as if the gangs and civilians were actively following her around, protecting her after all.

After her initial startlement that caused her head to jerk upwards from the lens of her device, she remained still upon the stool. After a while she allowed herself a furtive glance in his direction. He was about her age, he looked like he could handle himself.. the silver hair excluded a few worlds he might have come from. He might even be from Galianda, even if he was no one she knew.

She relaxed, somewhat, though she didnt entirely trust that the figure meant her no harm, yet. She turned her head, adjusting her glasses with a single finger at the bridge. Then she smiled at him in order to try to conceal her timorous feelings. Hed note the stutter in her voice, which belied any attempts at her trying to appear calm. G-Good evening. It took some d-doing. And its h-hardly the best view of her e-empyrean majesty besides.

Shed look him up and down briefly, W-What brings you out t-tonight? Perhaps her smile would warm slightly, as a touch of humor would creep into her voice, I d-doubt its the view, as s-scarce as it might be, down h-here.
Riku "What is it that you are looking for up there?" Riku asks with genuine curiosity, furrowing his brow and looking almost wistful for a moment as he looks up at the stars and rubs the back of his neck. He makes no advance or threathening moves, in fact sitting down on a wooden post while looking up at the sky.

He also doesn't admit to what he was doing out here either, whether by accident or design.

"It's the same sky, no matter where you are in the universe." he smiles slightly and shrugs one shoulder. "--I guess I just prefer to see things up close." he gestures up to the sky at that. "My name's Riku. I didn't mean to interrupt you, I just saw your telescope and it reminded me of something from a place I used to know."
Riku Had he asked what she was looking at, she might have supplied some tongue in cheek answer. Instead she looked wistful, given the question, as she looked up towards the sky with her naked eyes. It seemed strange, given her previous fear that she was willing to abandon it in one feckless moment where idealistic thoughts took over, Sometimes, I j-just think that if I s-stare up there long enough.. I might f-figure out the missing data I need to l-locate where my world once sat..

Shed look at him at that moment, as he sat upon the wooden post, and shed offer an impish smile her voice calming even more, even taking on a wry tone, Oh? Is that your t-theory? With a lowercase t? Feige used to needle her about that. Actually, its not the s-same sky. This world, that the A-Arcadian Empire once came from.. Shed lift up her wrist to the device on it, rolling her finger across it, then tapping the keys a few times, ..Had a much different c-configuration for the stars. If you know that c-configuration, you can find w-where the world came from..

Shed gesture with a hand towards a constellation in the Western sky. I-Ivalice came from somewhere in the Auriga c-constellation. . It was the fourth star from the w-western dip. You cant see that star anymore. While she sounded droll at first when she began to her little lecture, she had taken on an almost fond tone, it was obvious that she loved the subject matter, and wasnt trying to condescend him after she refuted his initial statement. She also didnt go into her theories on why this world had so many different versions of Ivalice.

Shed actually laugh, at his statement, Well, there are benefits to that. E-Everyone tells me that I look up so much, that I dont pay attention to my own f-feet. My name is A-Alma. Alma Hyral. Its very nice to meet you Riku. Im sorry for the free street l-lecture. Its not a s-subject too many find interesting. And then after a measured pause, shed give him an inquisitive look, What did it r-remind you of?
Riku Riku raises his eyebrows slightly in curiosity as Alma starts her lecture, and he crosses his arms as he listens to her talk and casts an eye upwards. "Well. Then maybe I mean that in a more philosophical sense. I'd like to believe all the worlds are connected by.. something.. even if it's just because they contain people who look up at the sky and not at their feet."

The teenager looks mildly sympathetic as she admits that her world has been lost, the expression shading into incredulity as he continues.

" really can find where the other worlds are actually in the sky. Or-- where they should be?" he laughs softly, but not in an unkind way. He just doesn't look like he believes her. "What are you doing down here where you can barely see anything?"
Riku Shed stop the pedantic sort of lecture to just smile at him, she was definitely calming down around him, the more he spoke, Youre right. Whether youre from Ivalice.. Galianda.. Manhatten.. the Land of Dragons.. people have gazed at the stars since time immemorial. I feel a kinship with anyone who tries to understand the mysteries of her creation.. this wouldnt be possible without them.

Shed raise a hand, one voluminous sleeve sliding off far enough off the wrist so that she could get a good view of it. She tapped the screen on the device on her wrist. She then rolled her thumb and forefinger over it. If he came a little closer, hed see the screen showed an approximation of a three dimensional model of the universe on a two dimensional plane. Many worlds were labeled with the names they were commonly known by. Others with question marks. Still others had boxes around an approximation of where she believe the world sat.

I dont blame you for being skeptical. But yes. I can. And more than that besides While Ive only gone through a single test run so far.. I can track trajectories through the darkness to where.. well I should ask first, have you ever heard of World Shards?

Shed give him a guileless, searching look. She really had no idea who she was speaking to. ..Well anyhow, its not entirely reliable as there are more objects that can survive the journey through the darkness than world shards.. but I can make projections for potential locations, for any given world.. once I know the worlds original position.

Shed look down at her hands momentarily, as if fretting over an answer to give him, in the end she decides to offer a truthful version, Well.. why does anyone come to Lower Archades? To start over. I lost my job recently as a researcher for the Murasame Zaibatsu. Let us just say that my employer and I had.. some ethical differences, and I didnt feel like I could trust him any longer. My sister wanted to move here, as shes.. well we come from a world of high technology and magitechnology besides. Archades is more capable of meeting her needs.

Realizing that shed given a very long answer, and offered more information than he perhaps required, shed look back up, Long story short, my research is mostly complete, other than finding star charts for some very difficult to locate worlds. My own for example. Im stargazing mostly for my own enjoyment now, rather than for research until I can find those charts.
Riku The teenager pales one shade at a time, as though the words were sucking the life force from his body slowly but steadily. He stands up and comes closer in a meandering sort of way, the edges of his blue eyes tingeing amber as he meets her searching look with a narrowed eyed glare of uncertainty and.. sometime like desperation.

Riku buries his face in one hand with a move that is almost a wit-gathering slap, taking two breaths to steady himself before dropping his hand and looking in mute fascination at the approximation of the universe. Many of the names he recognizes and he flicks a glance to her as she continues talking, crossing his arms when his fingers start shaking.

" You-- you really can do this. Find shards. Or at least /project/ where they might be?" he takes a VERY long breath and lets it out. "You know, if this is a scam you've got the innocent part down pat. But-- I'd think if it was, you'd be selling this line to the Senate and Emperor Gramis rather than be tucked away down here so.." he shakes his head.

"So I.. am curious if you might be interested in a trade. You are not the only one from a lost world. If you can help me find any trace of mine-- then I'll get you access to an Upper Archadian Library. You might find star charts there a little more useful than the view down here."
Riku Shed watch him for a time, her brow furrowing, as she became worried over his distress. Shed actually rise off her stool, approaching him one step at a time, the hem of her robes sweeping very close to the ground. She doesnt come within his personal space, however before he begins to speak again, she asks kindly, her voice steeped in open concern, Are you alright?

And then.. shed give him a look. It wasnt offended, it wasnt condescending, it wasnt wry, it truly was innocent.. I can..

She looked a touch nervous as to where he was going with this, Its not a scam but.. Her voice took on a pessimistic overtone, You barely believe me.. and Ive only located one shard, for one world so far. Granted.. it was my only attempt so far, but I was likely still inordinantly lucky. Im a nobody in this world, my name carries no weight. I have no status, no munny. Do you really think that the Senate and the Emperor would listen to some silly adolescent girl who went before them and claimed that she had a method which could locate the means to restore their world? I thought.. Id at least try to work my way up, prove myself.. Then maybe theyd listen.

The pessimism would fade away from her visage, as shed just look at him, A trade?

Shed give him a searching look as he explained his terms, Well Id like that but I dont want to promise something I cant deliver. Thatd be unfair to youtell me, Riku. What was the name of your world? And did any sliver of it survive to reach this world? How many people have you encountered from it? Did your world have moogles? Shed offer with a hopeful smile, It might be that I have some information on it already.
Riku Riku feels the edges of the old wrath peel up from the corners of his hard earned self control and it surprises and startles him a little. Not liking the sensation of darkness turning over in it's dormancy when he'd just wrapped his mind around whatever he he was now, he turned another irate and withering glare on Alma until he balled up a fist and... thumped it hard into his thigh with an explosive exhalation.

"Right. I--I.." he composes himself with difficulty, and he turns away from Alma to look out at the ocean. "They'd listen because you'd tell them what they wanted to hear. Especially if you had someone to speak for you. After all. It's what everyone wants to hear-- but yeah.. working up a reputation isn't a bad idea. I heard about a healer down here, somewhat like you are dress, providing free medical care. That stands out pretty sharply here, where everyone wants something."

Riku barks a sharp laugh. "..and I suppose I'm the same way. Right." Riku slowly closes a fist and for the first time in a long time, has to force the darkness down deeper. He wants to pick her up and shake her. What, after so long makes her special enough to do the impossible?

Well.. maybe it was never impossible.

Maybe you just didn't look hard enough.

Or at all..

Riku turned back to Alma and gave her a long, searching look. "Unfair." he almost bites off the word and then sighed tiredly, as if some internal debate he wasn't expecting was taxing his energy. "Yes.. I suppose it would be. Forget what I said before. I-- shouldn't pull at straws when I know what I will find there."
Riku "Because I don't--" and the voice is charged with venom as he spins around, fixing amber eyes on the flinching and stuttering white mage. He pauses then for a long moment, and his shoulders slump as if suddenly that darkness just.. evaporates. Gone like a flash of lightning that leaves nothing but the echoes behind.

"Boy." he says very softly. "'s been awhile. I'm sorry Alma." he snorts faintly, rubbing his face. "I have.. only recently mastered an unpleasant temper..I don't want to hope again and be disappointed."

The amber drains out of his eyes and he looks visibly shaken. "Galianda, huh?" he takes another breath and lets it out, looking at her through one eye as one hand was still over his left eye and part of his face. "..Huh. I've never heard of that one." he laughs softly and it's grim but genuine.

"Well. You've got a better start than I would. I'd make a terrible cook." He drops his hand and extends it. "..maybe we should start over. I've pretty much screwed up this conversation beyond all belief. Yes. I would be interested in hearing more about your research. And I might not be able to do anything myself, but if you can convince either of my mentors, then perhaps we can get you set up somewhere where you at least can see the whole sky." Riku smiles awkwardly in apology.
Riku The anger in his voice was palpable, and it frightened her to the point where a muffled gasp emanated from her throat. For a moment, Riku would swear that he saw a yellow aureole around her.. but as his temper faded, as the darkness receded, so did his perception of that. It was there and gone, just like that.

Shed regain her composure slowly by inches, I-Its.. Shed offer a wan smile, her voice calming slowly and yet it was still quiet, Its alright.. I understand.. And then her voice seemed tentative, I have.. over fifty in my extended family Riku. And.. only one has walked out of the darkness. Sometimes.. even on the days when it seems futile.. I have to allow myself to hope. I..we.. Shed look down at her feet. cant be the only ones left. That none of the others will come back... I refuse to believe that.

Yes.. how about this. You tell me something of your world. And Ill tell you of mine.. Shed raise one hand up to the sky, After all.. were all gazing at the same sky, the same stars, no matter what their configuration might be, arent we? No matter where our home is. Maybe that gives us more in common than you think..

Shed actually offer a grin, and then shed hesitantly put one hand forward, Why not? If were going to start over.. Im Alma Hyral, and I think Ive /also/ screwed up this conversation beyond all belief. I think Id like to know more about you before I try to stumble and stutter my way through a conversation with your /mentors/. I think the incentive of seeing all of her creation once more will properly motivate me but.. I could be wrong. Im more than a little awkward, when it comes to talking to people, if you havent noticed.. surely you have andIll just stop talking now, Im rambling. I do that sometimes.
Riku Riku laughs and shakes Alma's hand, then rubs his arms and chuckles as Alma starts to ramble. He smirks lopsidedly.

"Well.. I guess that doesn't sound so bad. I'm Judge Cadet Riku, 12th bureau. My mentor is his honor Zargabaath, judge magister of the 12th bureau. And believe me -- /I/ stumble and stutter my way through conversations with him, so you don't have to worry it's just you." he sighs and sits down on a post not far away, putting his hands in his lap.

"..and my home is called Destiny Island. It's a small ocean world. A tiny oasis in the midst of so much of--" he gestures to the sky and around. "..this. And I have to believe that my home will come back someday. So yeah. I think we do have some things in common. At least one.. and it's okay. Ramble all you want. It's.. actually somewhat familiar." he chuckles. "So I'm used to it."
Riku Oh, hes a judge-cadet. Suddenly shes glad that there wasnt some law for loitering near the docks that she was breaking. That would have been well, it would have cut short a lot of hopes for the future. She suddenly became a little more self-conscious about what she was saying, despite still seeming rather relaxed around him. She let her hand fall back to her side after it was shook. Riku would notice that her grip was.. very delicate.

Well.. here, Im a nobody. On Galianda, my family was one of the most well known names within our faith, Cosma Naturalis. Theres a lot to say about that but if you take away all the frills and dogma, then you have Cosmo, the Creatrix.. who sacrificed herself to create well everything. And then you have Chaos, the Destroyer.. who mortally wounded her and prompted that sacrifice. All of her children that came about from her sacrifice.. their corpses make up the continents of my world. I came from Ramuha, a continent wide city.. and well, all of the survivors from my world that Ive met here.. we all went to an Academy, for the elite on Chocobo, Galiandas moon.

Shed laugh to herself, self-consciously once again, Even there, I was a nobody.. when everyone there is /elite/ theres always some who get washed away in the tide of arrogance. I was sort of forgotten so when I came here, I decided to work for Souji Murasame. He was once engaged to my elder sister until Her voice wavers, she passed. And now, Souji is

Shed close her eyes, the depths of her change in perception of the man hitting her like a ton of bricks to the face.. a giant prick. So I resigned from his company. So, now I have nothing again, except my sister, and a handful of friends. My sister is sort of a genius in genetics and bioengineering. .RAMBLING. She decided to move on.

Shed actually giggle after a moment, her mood improving as they confided in each other, Well now. Im glad to know that I wont be /alone/ in that.

Shed give him an interested look when he spoke about Paradise Island.. Actually.. that gives me a little more hope for locating it. Small or not, if its an oceanic world every world with oceans has sailors. Every world with sailors, once used the stars.. or still does, for navigation. On my world it was the Levitani, seafaring folk, who came up with our first charts. And then after a short pause, her voice more quiet, Did you have any family there, Riku?
Riku Riku doesn't say anything while Alma talks. The look of incredulity comes and goes on his face but he doesn't say anything this time. Instead, he digs out a small black journal from his pocket and flips the pages idly. He picks up a small pen from the binding and starts writing things down in shorthand notes as she describes her world and her mythology.

He looks completely absorbed in what she is saying, even when she rambles from tangent to tangent. He has to blink several times to realize that she had turned the conversation back on him. "..yeah.' Riku says softly, with obvious hesitation. "..nobody of my world survived except me, and my friend Sora and.. our friend Kairi. Everyone else. Our families and friends.." he shakes his head, and keeps writing in the journal.

"..So. Fifty, huh? That must make for a really hectic family dinner."
Riku Well well just have to get them back or die in the attempt. Your friends, your family. Mine. Everybody elses.. theres a lot of broken homes out there from all this nonsense with the Heartless. Her eyes sparkled with a sort of whimsy which was nevertheless.. somber at the same time.

She watched him write, and shed tilt her head to the side. But she didnt try to look into what he was writing. Keeping a journal? Or was he just writing down facts, for the Judges? Tough to say. But shed only insinuate the more innocent option.

Shed nod thoughtfully when he spoke of Sora and Kairi, Oh? Youll have to introduce me to them. Maybe theyll have other leads that I can look into..

She was tapping her fingers on the touchscreen keypad of the device on her wrist. Adding a new section to look into later. New World: /Destiny Island/ Star System: Unknown Note: Find Sora and Kairi, Question them on Destiny Island. SIDEQUEST GET! Riku suddenly looked like he had a grey question mark over his head.

Shed laugh once again, lightheartedly, You have /no/ idea. Part of why all of us were expected to learn how to cook. Our Church um.. She trails off for a moment, that laughter dying in her throat, did she /really/ want to talk about that? Well, too late now.. If she stopped, then hed think she were hiding something, and she was a terrible liar so it was unlikely that shed be able to redirect the conversation elsewhere, a flush entered into her cheeks unconsciously. well lets just say that all of us were expected to get betrothed young, married by the time we were eighteen. And have rather.. large families.

Talk about the wrong thing to discuss with someone youd just met!
Riku "Yeah. It's something I used to do-- and I've fallen in and out of the habit." Riku looks up from the journal. "The sea of stars is a big place. It's good to keep some things straight in my head about the places I visit and hear about."

Riku smiles at her tipping over straight into extremely awkward conversation territory. He raises an eyebrow and just looks back down at his journal and continues to write. "..let's try not to die, shall we?" he says quietly.

"More than enough have done that, and it sort of defeats the purpose. Someday I will introduce you to Sora, if I can drag him away from his do-gooding for long enough. Kairi too. Someday."
Riku She wouldnt pry, allowing him to write what he wanted without trying to take a glance. Still shed just watch him, clearly curious. Oh? A judge-cadet like yourself has probably seen the world once or twice over. With that many pages, you must have a lot of memories to keep straight.

While she clearly wanted to see, she didnt think itd be polite to ask someone they just met to share their most precious memories and inner thoughts with her. Shed kept a diary herself back on Galianda, but she stopped after she realized that the entries were becoming so pessimistic during school that it depressed her /more/ to read through them.

Shed offer him a lopsided smile, as he too decided to go back into awkward conversation territory, ....I /am/ trying. But between.. /Chaos/, serial villains from Khamja, a hyperenthusiastic boy with the strength of an army, the heartless, an evil mad scientist and the best efforts of the Murasame Zaibatsu I dont expect to live particularly long. If I did? Itd be a pleasant suprise. Minette always wondered why I invested nothing in the companys retirement plan.

The three of you sound like youd be quite the characters, all together at once.. The three main characters, in fact! ...I think Ill definitely take you up on that. Ill have to introduce you to my sister, Kyra, soon. Just a recommendation though. Do not eat anything she makes, in the kitchen or otherwise. Avoid her coffee at all costs. She uses it for biological warfare, Im not even joking.

Shed try to keep a straight face, but eventually its too much for her, and shes shaking with silent laughter.

This scene contained 18 poses. The players who were present were: Riku.