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(2013-08-09 - 2013-08-10)
Mercade visits the Grid for the first time, and ends up getting in trouble in about five minutes. Avira and Deelel come to bail him out.
Mercade Alexander Welcome to the Grid!

Mercade stumbled out onto the Grid with all of the finesse of a blind elephant. He looked up into the digital sky, and then the shining city around them. "Wow." He says, simply.

Five minutes later, he is strolling through the city with his hands in his pockets, whistling a jaunty tune to himself as he walks around through the streets. People keep giving him weird looks. Man, did none of these people ever see a detective before? Deelel never seemed to have a problem!

Oh well.
Deelel Strangeness is a bit more expected in Manhattan? Who knows for sure things are quite glowy here after all, as glowy as Deelel to be exact. Thankfully most of the locals think Mercade is just a stray, so it's not as bad as it could be. Okay it is bad but it could be far worse. One program dashes over to two heavily armored programs pointing out Mercade to them.

"Thanks for the tip, Program. We'll handle this."

The pair carry staffs and clearly may be security or military given they are clearly in heavy armour from the looks of it and one points to Mercade.

"Halt Program!"

The other moves in almost expecting the other to bolt.
Mercade Alexander "Whoa." Mercade says as they close in around him. He didn't break any laws, surely they're not going to, uh... arrest him? "Hey officers!" Mercade says brightly. "How can I help you this fine day?" He was /just reading/ that Computers For Dummies book, he should /totally/ be ready for this. Right?
Deelel The two guards seem surprised for a moment and look to each other.

"Going to need to see your disc, program. Just take it nice and slow, this won't take too long."

The other guard wonders why he's partner's not being more of a hard ass on it but hey if it keeps a stray from bolting? So much less trouble for everyone. The guard moves towards holding out his hand expecting the disc, if this guy is just an oddball and the disc checks out they can get about their business. Sadly for Mercade doesn?t have one and the other guard keeps his staff ready holding it in a bit of an odd position. Poor Mercade no book on computers not even the ones Flynn wrote would cover something like this.
Mercade Alexander "Disk?" Mercade says, confused. "Uh.. Disk! Right. One second." Mercade reaches into his coat, rummaging around and eventually...

He pulls out a 3.5 inch floppy and presents it to the guard. "Here you go! You're uh... login security, right? My username is MAlexander and password is 'capitaleye-capitalh-lowercase ee-ay-arr-tee-capital ay-lowercase vee-eye-arr-ay-one-one-one.'" He gives a dumb grin. "Everything okay?"
Deelel The First guard was pretty old far as his kind went, he'd seen a lot of strange things, hell he'd survived patrol duty in Purgos. He he ain't ever seen anything like this as he's handed a small square item. Username? Password? Okay password the basic knew but user name. He looks to his partner.

"This stray's really far gone."

"Ya, not a fate I'd wish on anyone. Getting cubed is cleaner."

"Come with us Stray, you will be rectified or placed in the games."

The two guards move to grab Mercade and haul him off! Seriously ever since the Renegade showed back up stuff was getting strange as all get out. Though the guard does keep the disk, someone above him might want to look at the darn thing. This is totally not Mercade's day.
Mercade Alexander "Huh?" Mercade says, confused. And then suddenly he's getting hauled off. "HEY! I didn't do anything wrong! HELP! ATTICA! WITNESS THE OPPRESSION INHERENT IN THE SYSTEM!" Mercade struggles with the guards hauling him away, but strength is not his specialty, it's speed. "ATTICAAAAAA!"
Deelel The lead guard never liked this, Strays? It was never a pretty end maybe this guy would get lucky and get a new function of some sort? If he was unlucky he'd end up in the games, least he'd have his mind back for a cycle or two, either way. He had his function and was going to carry them out. He'd find he's taken to a strange craft known as a Recognizer he might have seen them in the Space Paranoids.

He's hauled in with several others as a more lightly armoured programs looks each one over, stating either Rectify or Games. When it comes to Mercade? He ends up getting the games sentence. The craft takes off and is heading towards what seems like a arena of some sort? Some sort of digital counterpart to one of New York?s stadiums. If Mercade recalled Deelel mentioning the Games? She'd hinted to some sort of blood sport that she'd been forced to survive.

Mercade would be taken from the craft upon landing he would soon find himself being poked and prodded by another guard of some sort as he's left in an empty chamber and told to stand in the middle by some woman he can not see.
Mercade Alexander Mercade gets hauled off and sentenced. "Hey! You can't treat me like this! I didn't do anything wrong! I'm just a poor boy, don't need no sympathy!" He just can't stop making references. That might be what earns him the Games sentencing. "Hey, it's a game." Mercade says, while everyone else gasps. "I'm good at games. I think."


"ARGH! I JUST CAN'T BEAT STAGE 5-1!" Mercade yells at his game of Super Mario Bros.


Mercade is transported to the Games Arena and hauled into a chamber an told to stand in the middle. "Uh..." Well, he /could/ try to smash his way out, but he really doesn't want to make a mess so fast. Besides, how bad could a game be?

And then he remembers the look of terror on the faces of those people chosen for the Games. He's got a bad feeling about this.

Nevertheless, he has to move forward. He stands in the middle and waits for whatever comes.
Deelel What comes next? Four segments of the walls open, revealing four women clad in white form fitting suits, that have a few white glow lines. The group walk up to Mercade and seem to get to work as a someone over what might be a loud speaker speaks to Mercade.

"Greetings program, you have been selected for the games. You will be fitted with an identity disc. Everything you do or experience will be recorded upon it, should you lose your disc or fail to follow commands you will be subject to immediate derezzoultion."

The Sirens work aiming to cut off his clothing. As one of them puts two of her fingers together and makes a cutting device of some sort. They move then to fit him with a chest plate of and new clothing start st form out from it rapidly over Mercade's body looking much like the clothing Deelel was often wearing, next up a disc is fitted to the mount on the back of Mercade's new outfit and he might feel strange as it synchs up to him.

This could be worse right? They also fit him with some armour which bears a number 7 upon it and is transparent green, looks thing things can't get worse? Right? No they do one of them reach to remove his hat...
Mercade Alexander Mercade, in other situations, might have been more cool with being surrounded by pretty women who are stripping him. Before he met Avira, of course. "HEY!" He yells as they begin cutting off his clothing. He can't do much about it, though, and soon he's left in his skivvies. He stands there, fidgeting for a moment until they supply basic armor-clothing... stuff. Mercade doesn't feel right like this...

And then they put on the Disc. Mercade blinks, staring forward as he feels his mind whirling around, the Disc syncing up with him. "Ugh." He says, shaking his head as the process completes. "That was weird." He comes to just as one of them moves to remove his hat, though, and he immediately clamps his hand down over the top, keeping it on his head.

"No." Mercade growls. "The hat stays." IT's one thing to get his clothing ruined, because that happens /all the time/, but the hat is his bloody trademark.
Deelel The siren looks at Mercade long and hard for a moment, there are a lot of programs going to the games these days. Not just real criminals like the sort in Purgos. Or even strays, just many breaking certain new laws and regulations she looks at Mercade for a moment. He likely won't survive this match, and she thinks best to leave it.

"Good luck program, you will need it to survive to the next cycle."

with that the Sirens all walk backwards into the alcoves they came from in the first place.

The platform rises bring Mercade into a hovering chamber with several other programs moth don't seem very happy several are down right terrified at this point. There isn't much time to argue as they rise into the arena and one might see another platform. Ones with with black guard troops who are clearly showing off with the sort of agility stunts that Deelel and TRON are fairly well known for.

"PROGRAMS! WELCOME TO THE ARGON ARENA! Thanks for General Tessler's wise rule today he has schedule games for your entrainment! LET THE GAMES BEGIN, and Glory to CLU2!"

One program looks to Mercade

"I'm not even a stray I was just out past curfew! I don't want to die!"

The buzzer sounds and the Blackguard are preparing to move in.
Mercade Alexander "So what's it going to be? Pac-Man? Donkey Kong? Maybe a little Zelda?" Mercade asks the Program next to him as they ushered into the entrance.

His confident expression falls as he hears the announcer and sees the heavily armed men approaching.

"Ooooooooooooooooor bloodsports." Mercade says with a note of resignation in his voice. He grits his teeth. "Well then. Come on guys, we need to get organized or they're going to cut us apart! Watch each other's back!" Mercade gives advice, but he knows these guys are probably untrained combatants. This is going to get ugly. He reflexively pulls the Disc off of his back. He's seen Deelel and TRON use this thing to good effect...

But he has no idea how to use it. Is it like a frisbee?

"Forget this." He grimaces, and holds out his hand. "It's Keyblade time." There is an explosion of light, and the Twilight Seeker Keyblade manifests from his Heart, a surge of energy rolling around him as intent and danger awaken the powers within. He charges forward, taking point to get the attention of the Blackguards and demand their notice. "COME ON, BOYS! WHO WANTS TO PLAY A GAME?" He yells, intentionally trying to taunt them into focusing on him instead of the other Programs.

"Mental note: send this Tessler guy a /sternly worded letter/ about this."
Deelel The Blackguard are preparing to move in, as Mercades speaks. One of the programs nods to Mercade and some comes another.

"I don't want to be deleted without a fight..."

Said young lady of a basic pulls the disc off her back and gets ready. She pauses stating at Mercade as he says keyblade?

That also gets the Blackguard's attention what the heck is that? Some weapon? What the glitch was that former Stray on.

"Letter hun...that's actually kinda funny."

The brawl is about to get crazy but the Program in charge is already recording this weapon is strange he's not even sure what it is. Meanwhile Deelel had caught wind of the games were being run and had heard just by a gossip she' head that i sounded like someone form outside had wandered in and got caught. She had no idea who it was so here she was now flying high over Argon on an light Jet with Avira hanging on to her.

"All right you know the drill I'm gong to get a hold of the display screen ti distract them while we drop in, and see what we can do to spring the programs there and possibly our guest."

Deelel has a few extra light cycles batons at the ready for this, and she activates what she's going to do.

The commands are run and suddenly the jumbo-tron for lack of a better word starts to glitch out static and nothing is displayed for a moment.

"Also do not use out names and keep your helmet on, if they ID you? You will be hunted."

With that Deelel turns off the jet and it's gone in a poof of light. Thus the old saying? What goes up must come down, and there Deelel goes down. She's lucky as she has a drop pack on, and she's made sure Avira has one as well the device fans out it's four wings and starts to slow her Decent as she drops towards the arena.

On the display? the following appears.


Deelel is now falling towards the arena and going to come in for a landing.

The masked form of Deelel lands in the middle of the arena between both groups of fighters she rises up from the ground and calls in with her heavily distorted voice.

"I'm sorry but today's death games are CANCELED!"

She pulls the disc off her back and stares at the blackguards and her form's good she's clearly got experience form the looks of her but who is she?
Avira Avira had been alerted to something amiss long ago when Mercade started making noise about oppression on the TDA radio. This was preceded by Max remarking about passwords. Deelel's rumors confirm the absolute worst: Mercade had been intercepted as a stray and taken to the Games. She herself has only heard about them from Deelel and Beck, but all she heard was more than enough. They needed to find him and retrieve him.

As she clings to Deelel, her heartbeat quickens as she sees Mercade on the enormous screen, clothed in the bodysuit of a program, wielding his new signature weapon as Blackguards closed in. "Yes, I understand. No names." she mutters, a smooth, featureless black helmet snapping up to enclose her head. She herself, like most natives here, has an identity disc, provided by Aurora. At first glance she could easily be mistaken for an antivirus program.

She was also made sure to understand how the drop packs work before using one right now so fortunately, she has no issues with their operation as it slows her descent. She lands, crouched, then stands back to back with Deelel.

"We're breaking you out!" she calls out, her voice autotuned beyond recognition, "Come to us! Quickly!" Mysteriously, she doesn't arm herself with her identity disc. Much like Mercade, Avira has no idea how to actually fight with it.

Instead, out comes an odd weapon that Mercade would no doubt recognize. The Spine looks a bit different in the Grid, with each sharp edge outlined in glowing white light. It is an interesting object to be faced with.
Mercade Alexander Mercade doesn't give them time to figure out what he's wielding. He hammers into the center of the enemies like a whirlwind. Unlike when he was training with Avira, the intent to battle calls forth a silver power that rolls off of the Keyblade like a gentle wave, leaving afterimages in its wake. He spins, lunging towards the nearest opponent and catching him off guard with the quick strike, sending the Blackguard reeling. He spins, then, parrying an incoming Disc with a flare of hexagonal light barriers, before he strikes through the field, slashing out to disarm the Program and send their Disc flying away. He doesn't pursue as the Blackguard inevitably runs for their Disc. One does not just leave their weapon lying around.

He then yelps as a Disc edges his hat, almost cleaving through it as he ducks. Two Blackguard take advantage of the moment to pounce on him, bearing him down to the ground. "Whu-oh!"

And that's when the others appear. Mercade hauls off and punches one one of the Blackguards off of him as they look up, distracted. "Oh snap, it's the Cavalry!" He stabs the other off of him as he gets back to his feet and holds his Keyblade in both hands, taking a defensive posture as he gets near the unknown pair.

One of the problems with taking steps towards anonymity is that your allies can't tell who you are either if they weren't warned ahead of time. Mercade looks over at the pair, squinting for a moment at Avira, before he looks at the Blackguards. "Get the others out first!" He calls to them. "I'll back you guys up! I'll go last."
Deelel Deelel has to say Avira has taken it well given just what a crazy stunt they have just pulled. She also thinks at some point disc lessons for anyone who wants them might be a good idea. It really hit her it's like breathing to them for her people using a disc. Not so much for the users, well they are armed and she'll figure it out later at this point. She has her disc ready looking down the blackguard.

"We need to move fast and get out of the arena, before they do worse to us."

Given some of the command someone running the arena can do? Well yes, this is quite a concern but they had to act before someone got killed.

The soldier in charge of the arena is barking orders to the arena team.

<I want them cubes /now/ bring me their discs once you are done with them. Do so or Tessler will have all our heads for this!>

more correctly his head but the strange weapon has him wondering and knowing data on it might be important to saving his own ass.

Meanwhile alerts are sounding but the Crowd seems shocked and curious about this at first.

"Right we need to get out of the arena itself."

The walls of the arena are controllable by the guy in charge but there's armed blackguard in there so it won't be used just yet.

"Copy that stranger. I'll worry about the others you focus on the people here."

Deelel has the extra batons and they are going to be a user send here. She's already dropping to the ground using her disc to start cutting through he floor she turn her head to the program who talked to Mercade.

"Take the batons hand them out once I'm through you programs need to go and don't stop running. I'm sure you know all where you need to go."

Purgos was the best place to vanish from the face of the grid. It wasn't nice but it was a chance at life right?

The Blackguard meanwhile are moving in discs armed and the discs start flying even s the one int eh lead is able to avoid Mercades attacks quite quickly. They may be goons but it seems there's a reason these guys were in the pit fight, it would have been a slaughter against the non combatants. It's a good thing that was stopped.
Mercade Alexander Mercade spins the Keyblade as he gives the Blackguard a 'come get it' gesture. "All right sprites, what are you waiting for?" He yells at the Guards. The Discs come in flying, and Mercade charges, a grimace on his face as he sweeps the Twilight Seeker through the air and knocks the Discs away in a deflection. "You guys think bloodsport is funny? Let's see how you like it when it's a fair fight!"

He slams down into the middle of the group, and look up under the brim of the hat with a grin. "On second thought, this isn't fair at all. You kids better bring backup." He inverts the Keyblade and drives it into the floor.

A moment later, there is an explosion of light as holy power lashes outwards in a blastwave, rolling outwards towards the Blackguard. He spins, lifting the weapon and lashing it towards a Blackguard. "GET OVER HERE!"

The word gives intent form, intent channeled through the Heart and into the Keyblade, the focus for that intent. A lashing line of light sweeps out, snagging one of the BlackGuard and pulling them towards Mercade, as he spins and delivers a brutal rounthouse cleave to catch the Blackguard in the air as he is drawn close.
Avira For users, the chakram-like objects were kind of alien. Avira couldn't really imagine fighting with them unless forced to by circumstances or already trained in it. She nods once in understanding at Deelel's words. This was a rescue, not an effort to show up everyone.V

But as the Blackguards come in, she has no choice. She has to fight! Right now, though, she couldn't be more proud of Mercade. He is adapting beautifully to his new weapon.

The other captured Programs flock to their position and Avira takes a few steps forward, with her weapon held in both hands, and starts easily swatting the discs from the air, deflecting them or smashing them to the ground as she protects both herself and the retreating backs of the programs. The short woman weaves and ducks around a fair number on her own, right up until she is brought into close combat with one of the approaching guards.

She deflects his disc, then turns into him, bringing both of her hands down to elbow him in the gut. Taking a step forward away from him, she brings a leg up, then viciously kicks her foot out behind her, sending the larger Program flying and skidding away.

Two move to attack her at once and Avira seems prepared, slipping around so she isn't pincered between the two, using one to block the other by continuously moving around him.
Deelel One of the guards grunts replying to Mercade

"...There is no joke about this, null unit!"

He lunges in at Mercade and it doesn't go do well for him as Mercade slams the Keyblade into the floor. It seems he's got some sort of plan in mind from the looks of it as he just manages to grab one of the blackguard and flips him up into the air. Now while he's being juggled he goes down hard and she?s all up close. The guard is caught his helmet shatters and he goes flying across the arena where he lands with a crash. He's not moving but he is alive, though Mercade may not know this.

Meanwhile Avira is getting into the thick of things with the blackguard, herself. They are fast they are quick but Avria is able to keep them off of the civilians who got pulled into this. The guards meanwhile evades hear attacks but they can't land any really solid hits on her either.

Deelel doesn't fair so well as she's caught by an disc toss across the back she lets out a cry stops cutting with her own disc throwing her own to bounce about the arena at the guards even before it comes back she now kicking the hole into the floor looking to the programs as she says

"GO! We will be behind you as soon as we can."

The Guards are not happy as they are quickly redoubling their attacks they break up with two going after Mercade given the trashing he gave one of their number. The discs are flying and the captives are running at this point they make use of the light batons soon they are clear of the arena main ground aiming to just blast the heck out of here fast they can.

Guards are moving in so it might be tricky but they have a chance now.
Avira As the other captured programs flee, Avira's antics and acrobatics quickly attract more of the guards. As she hears Deelel grunt, she grits her teeth behind her helmet, chastizing herself for not keeping the guards off of her better. Stepping up her attacks, she peppers one guard with several rapid blows to the midsection with the Spine before finishing with a vicious kick to the chest that sends him flying into another guard.

She barely has a moment to breathe as more are upon her. As they start to close in, she resolutely starts unloading swiping slash after slash. "COME ON!" she bellows in a musical warble, "IS THAT ALL?!"

It shouldn't be long now. Subtly, she switches her grip upon her weapon to a one-handed hold. The other hand strays to her thigh where her own light cycle baton is strapped. It shouldn't be much longer...
Mercade Alexander Mercade is just as happy for the Blackguard to survive. He doesn't want needless killing. He does, however, know that they won't stop without fighting. They have to fight. They have no choice. "No joke? You need to learn to laugh more. Really, what's the point of life if you're going to be all /glum/ about it?"

The Keyblade Detective continues to provide frontal defense against the Blackguard attack group. It's only a matter of time until they get reinforcements, but they need to get some headway to escape. They'll never get away if they don't fight off the Blackguards already here. A Disc comes by, getting past hisguard and knocking him back. The armor shatters, forcing Mercade to grimace at the exposed flesh underneth. It's a bruise, though, not something worse... So far.

With a whipping of his weapon, he buys some area. "All right, let's change the game up a little bit..." He closes his eyes, and focuses on his Keyblade. A faint glimmering, an ephermeal aura begins gathering around him, shining like the moon and stars just before the dawn. He looks up, gesturing with the Keyblade to the mysterious totally-not-Avira, and the energy suffuses her as well, a warm energy bolstering her own power. And as the moon and stars shine brightly, and the Blackguard howl a curse of rage and jealousy, the Detective turns and sets himself. "We can do this." He says, both to himself and those around him. He believes it. It has to work.
Deelel Deelel on the other had has been condemned to the games before even if they were a far more primitive iteration of them. Still Deelel knows tactics that would still apply and work here. She launches her disc sending it about like a pinball off the arena walls. It catches and clips all four of the guards but one? Loses a hand and he goes down screaming, he's not getting back up any time soon. One might notice his served hand exploded into small amount red tinted cubes. Now only three guards are still in the fight and the last of the prisoners have ducked out. Our heroes shouldn't wait much longer at this point, before heavy back up will arrive to the arena.

Mercade meanwhile is getting the guards attention given how crazy this strange weapons is they are labelling Mercade to be the primary threat here they throw themselves at him even as he uses some unknown power which has proven to be dangerous. What just is he doing? He's running some sort of command on one of the two unknown females.

They don't want this to proceed much and here comes Avira now she moves in and just what are they doing something big is seems to be about to happen. So there goes all the darn discs at this point as the three launch into a combination attack!
Avira Avira can feel it. Magic...from Mercade? "W..what the.." even she cannot hide her raw surprise at this. Mercade with magic?! That was undeniably more than just keyblade impressiveness! "We can do this!" she responds as Mercade's power runs through her.

A silvery sheen of energy overcomes her. This is a familiar sight to Avira but this is the first time it's been triggered externally, the fires of Avira's heart stirred by Mercade's keyblade.

It is this burst of energy that enables some impressive dodging on Avira's part, straight out of the Matrix as she bends and weaves around the spinning discs. "Okay!" she calls out, taking a step backwards and unleashing a sudden blast of energy. It's ice magic, but here in the grid it manifests as mysterious blue waves of force. No doubt it'll be a strange thing to review on the captured footage. This blast is meant to give them all cover because shortly afterwards, Avira reaches for her light cycle baton.

"TIME TO GO!" she calls, stowing her weapon and taking the baton in both hands. In moments, she too has her own light cycle. As it heads for the exit, one arm reaches out to grasp Mercade and drag him aboard.
Mercade Alexander Mercade sees the Discs coming. He raises his Keyblade, and the Discs hit a barrier once again... But this time, the combination strike blows through the field, hammering into him and driving him to one knee.

Blood spatters across the field, not voxels, as Mercade's armor shatters off of him from the blow. He gasps in pain, staring at the floor for a moment... And then the gentle energy around him flares, swirling with power as he forces himself to his feet.

He sees it.

He raises the Keyblade to the sky, and radial beams wash out, dragging the remaining Blackguard towards him into the center of the Arena. "You could have fled at any time. You could have surrendered. What is it that you fear more?" Mercade says, as he leaps upwards, hanging over the crackling field that binds the Blackguards in place. "Your master must be truly terrible. I do not relish what must be done, but I cannot allow this to go on any longer. This reckless bloodshed is nothing but a way to satiate the cruelty of the world."

Mercade then holds his Keyblade before him, inverting it as he closes his eyes. Energy flows around him and the Keyblade as he speaks. "You suffer as much as those who you torment. You cannot continue as you are, yet you cannot stop. But for now..."

He releases the Keyblade, and it flies downwards, spearing into the center of the crackling field. There is a soundless white detonation, and then a spiralling column of light that explodes upwards.

"Be at peace."
Mercade Alexander Mercade falls downwards to land on the floor, the Keyblade vanishing as Mercade holds out a hand and Avira grabs him to allow him to swing onto the light cycle. He looks up and yells to the crowd for the hell of it, "TRON LIVES!" That seems to be the pattern, right? TRON is a bro.
Deelel Avira can certainly bring the pain she hits one of the three remaining black guard with her own square on with her attack and she goes sprawling across the arena flood and is just out of it she's only stopped by the energy wall of that arena. Deelel doesn't have to be told twice her self she's going to arm her own light cycle as well and follow Avira out. The sound of helicopter blades could be heard by now as other fores /are arriving/.

All things said the response time was very fast all things considered. Given what could be done to them for flat out incompetence or failure you bet on the odds where you have a better shot of living on. Surrender wasn't really an option not in a situation like this. Also what the heck is this blood he's talking about? What is blood?

That's one hell of a blast it's uncertain if the two standing guards survived it as it's time to good. Deelel is following along the other as they escape and she follows but Deelel seems to be making some mistakes and slips up as she keeps up with Avira. She may be hurt worse than she's letting on.

meanwhile the Officer in charge would be pale as a sheet if he had blood like a human. Tessler is going to be ... angry, the only thing that might keep him from being swept of the floor after his report. What in the name of Flynn was that weapon? The Renegade had to be in with this but it seems they now have .... allies. Or worse copy cats.

This scene contained 27 poses. The players who were present were: Mercade Alexander, Avira, Deelel