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No title.
(2012-12-30 - 2012-12-31)
No description.

The sea turns out to be a really big place. Who knew?

How do you find just one gigantic whale in an entire universe of (!) came to the rescue as collaboration locates at least the general vicinity in which giant whales (or giant junk piles, or possibly Ultros)

Seafood Soup aside, there is nothing in the way of claiming the prize at the end of the rainbow except for the fact that the sea is utterly calm.

A doldrums has fallen over the Junon area even as the info has lead to the military port town dominated by massive cannon. The sea is a single sheet of rippling glass. There is no wind and the baking sun still sits overhead, the daystar brilliant and shining and causing waves of heat to thrum across the stale air.

There's nothing in the way except the doldrums, and the blazing heat, and the rumors also stating the increased instances of monsters and heartless in the Junon area at roughly the same time as the Abnormally Large Cetacean Alert. (ALCA Alert bumper stick on the side of a bulletin board. Save the whales. Collect the Whole set.)

So there's nothing but the heat, and the dead ocean, and the lurking threat of monsters. .. but those are just minor details, really. Inconsequential.

You arrive at Ocean:Junon Port Town. Command?
Avira "Don't worry, Will, I /know a guy/." Avira had said a while ago.

Small detail that Avira had apparently failed to mention to the likes of Will: said guy is, in fact, a pirate. They are going to sail on a pirate ship that was actually STOLEN in Avira's presence. (Well it was stolen for a very good cause of getting Jasmine away from danger!)

Naturally, Avira had given Faris a heads up ahead of time letting them know that they needed transport out to sea to find a whale. Of course she was prepared to pay or compensate in grog or whatever pirates wanted. Faris was also thoroughly warned that Avira had a currently altered appearance.

The mutate stands triumphantly on the deck, her hands on her hips. "I dunno about you, Will, but today....I'm feelin' LUCKY."
Will Sherman Will was on the deck with Avira.

Faris and Will have met before, briefly, and both have a shared...relationship with Gilgamesh. Who is...not here. Odd, it's like the dude is never around when you want him and there when he hasn't been there then either.

Will rests on the deck, hands behind head and hat over his face as Avira talks to him, and he slowly, raises his hat back up and stares at her. " no no no! No! Don't say that! /Never/ say that. Infact, unsay that right now!" Ohgodohgodohgodohgodohgod.

Will just sighs, and lsays back down...god this was going to be awful now...he was sure of it. THANKS AVIRA.

"Avira, I like you and everything, but...seriously, you gota watch what you say around me. Or we're going to be in horrible trouble."
Aerith Aerith looked over the edge of the boat, the wind running through her braided hair, a serene smile on her face as she watches the waves roll in the distance and hears the call of birds in the air. Her staff is propped on the railing, just to her left, seemingly ignored for the time being as she observes the scenery. Then a familiar voice speaks, one she hadn't heard in a long time, and she peers over to observe... wait, that's Avira? She certainly looks... different.

Then she remembers what that mad scientist did to her, and frowns. Must've been horrible, going through that.

She wants to reach out, go to her, but the flower girl has no idea what to say first, so she declines, simply turning back toward the waves, a thoughtful expression on her face.
Legion TREASURE?!?!?!?!
The nameless Legion is very interested in this mission. And Umi, of course, is eager to come along too. Umi is sneaked on board the pirate ship but once on there is little need for disguises, but it seems The Network is intent on keeping up with the backup plan, just in case. As thunder rumbles in the distance, Umi says, "It looks like a storm is falling, The Network notes." But they don't seem terribly concerned.

Almost as if they are basically masters of electrical manipulation. Can they protect an entire ship? Well, hopefully we won't have to find out! Umi has, however, donned her pirate outfit again, the very visage of a first mate, complete with scimitar and, strapped to her back, seems to be a ... ... semi automatic rifle! Well that's perhaps a bit unusual.

The unnamed Legion is presently unarmed except for a coin she rolls around in her hands. "It is nice to formally meet you, Avira, The Network says."

"Don't worry, Will!" Umi says. "We're pretty hard to hurt with lightning." She grins widely.
Deidra Deidra is going to have to trust in Avira now, but also it's a boat, boat means water, waters means sinking like a stone if she falls asleep. Sometimes she thinks humans have it easeir when something happens to them while snoozing they tend to wake up. Pushing the thought about drowing terribly out odf her mind she's looking over at Will for a moment. "Those are dangerous words to say around Will."
Tifa Lockhart Often, the barmaid finds herself taken on various mercenary jobs. The word spreads that they need a hand, she's a capable enough fighter, and she likes the munny. Well, not as much as Scrooge does, but she's saving. What other reason would a landlubber like her want to be on a boat hunting for a whale? Work on her tan in a swimsuit? (FYI, She's not in a swimsuit).

She came with Aerith, leaning on the side of the ship as she looks outward to the horizon. She's not looking for anything in particular, just enjoying the breeze, how it slides through her long hair. "Not really here for the treasure per se, mostly for the pay, but if we can get a shiny or two, or maybe something to decorate the bar, doesn't need to be of major value. Even an old boat steering wheel can have its charm sometimes."

She offers a wave to Avira if she looks her way. Oh hey, Deidra is here too, that must make for a long way from home for a gargoyle.
Faris Scherwiz Faris is known to some, as Faris. For others, she might seem puzzingly familiar as someone known as Sarisa, Princess of Tycoon. It is probably the long purple hair. But purple hair isn't that unusual, considering the hair colors and styles of everyone -else- in this fantasy world.

She gives Avira a friendly nod. "Please don't say that." He requests, his voice somewhat deeper than her Sarisa voice as well. "Remember what happened the -last- time we went out at sea to do something?" She was not very surprised as to the status of AVira; she trusted the woman at her words, and as such she just gets a ... rather friendly smile.

Honestly, Faris is a little disconcerted by how many people are on her boat for this expedition.
Lavi Towering over the rest of the crew and the assembled band of adventurers, Lavi stands at the bow of the ship, arms crossed as she grins out at the calm waters of the ocean. The heat doesn't seem to bother her any despite being clad from neck to toe in massive metal armor, no signs of fatigue or sweat apparent on her face.

The giantess only knows a few of the people present and hasn't had time to get properly acquainted with them yet - but that doesn't bother her either because today they're out for some real Adventure! The monsters of this world had proven to be quite boring thus far for the old knight and the rumors of a gaint whale (whatever a whale is) were all she needed to tag along with her current employer.

Water travel was one of those things that never happened in her world, what with all of the flying carnivorous fish, acidic whirlpools, and eldritch storms that plagued the oceans. So this was a new experience for her - another rarity after two hundred years of life.

"Quite the view," she muses to no one in particular.
Ultros Time for adventure. Yeessss.

Straight into the heart of adventure means having to dea with a very disconcerting fact. There is no wind. There is just wind and the blazing heat and nothing to be seen for quite some time. The fickle breeze that blows through the hair of some does not see fit to fill the sails or to grant any boon to the adventuring party.

Purple hair is also SO usual. It probably is more so when you see it out in the open ocean. It's faint and indistinct but it seems that as they continue on their course that a wide slick of purple appeared like a bruise over the sea.

Whatever it is they are quickly approachong it. Well-- not as quickly as they would be if the wind were cooperating, but steady enough.

A slick of seaweed perhaps?

Only if you are lucky.
Avira "Oh come on, Will, you're always lucky. It's not like /Reize/ is here." Avira sighs, keeping her hands on her hips. "Besides, I don't think..." she stops. I don't think anything can top the awfulness of my last time at sea is what she's ABOUT to say. But wisely doesn't. Instead, she gives Faris a knowing look when he is the one to invoke their last trip.

"Oh, so you're one of the Legion. In person. Heard and seen plenty about you." Yeah, she saw those pictures you posted to the TDA network. Saucy. "Nice to meet you too, Legion." Tifa also gets a friendly wave too.

"Oh, by the way." Avira gestures to their mysterious gigantic companion, "That's Lavi. She's from a world that had everything all mutated and dangerous." Naturally, she's completely unaware that Will has met Lavi before.
Will Sherman "I know her. I met her when she first came to Traverse time." Will nods to Avira. "Hi Lavi!" he waves, and leans back down. "Also, you're tempting fate Avira. Stop it." he politely reminds her.

Narritive awareness, Will has it when it comes to luck and fate. Sometimes time.

"Hey Faris, where is the Rock Hound? I haven't seen him in forever, and that dude is basicly the best rock hound ever." he says, trying to take his mind off...well...

Being in an ocean. He hates being in an ocean. "Ugh...I can not wait to get back to land again. Oceans...oceans are the worst things."
Aerith A certain flowergirl can't help but overhear certain parts of the conversation, and takes note of familiar names... and not so familiar ones. This Lavi for example... She turns her head to look toward the quite tall woman in armor. She reminded her of someone else, but she couldn't place them at the moment.

Aerith looked toward the wheel at this Faris, the captain. There wasn't much she could decipher about him, but she'd probably find out sooner or later. In any event, the purple blotch in the sea goes unnoticed...
Tom Magnusson There are a scant few things in this world that no earthly force can ever deny a man. Of these, none are quite so beloved by people throughout all the lands as fishing. Give a man a fish, a wise man said, and you feed him for a day. TEACH a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime!

And so Tom fishes. The rod he carries is really more of a small crane than a proper fishingpole. The reel is at least the size of one of Tom's biceps. The entire thing appears to be hewn of a mysterious composite of metal and granite, as if someone had torn a plate off some mysterious behemoth machine and turned it into a rod.

Upon his head, there is a hat. On the hat, there are hooks and dangly bits. Atop the hat, there is a blue rat. Over the hat, the sun shines mightily in the sun. Under the hat- under Tom's head- under Tom's thick boots, there is a wooden deck. Tom sits at the vessel's prow, tugging every so often at his pole. Tug tug.
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart walks over to Lavi when she notices that Aerith seems to be interested in the tall girl "Hi miss Lavi, nice to meet you again." She makes her rounds of meeting everyone she knows at least. She met Lavi in Serendipity, even the tall girl barely attracts any attention in a place like that. She oculd be part of the show for all people care.

On a boat though, its a bit different.

"Did you improve your card playing?" She asks politely of course, not wanting to ruffle any feathers unwittingly either. No matter how strong the barmaid is, its always a bit hard to defend against someone that their fists is bigger than your head.
Legion The Legion nods to AVira, and then to Umi who is still y'arring it up over there. "Thank you." She says, her eyes betraying nothing about the picture and not noting it otherwise at all, instead keeping that measured deadpan for the moment. "We say the same about you." She dips her head in a small, polite bow.

Umi says, "Why's that?" to Will, "Oceans were rather predominant in your world and are a neccessary component for life."
"Perhaps he is hydrophobic." The other Legion says. "Thus encouraging an irrational response. Similar to his beliefs regarding the 'French'."
Umi considers. "Oh."

Legion approaches the side of the ship and peers over it towards the slick of purple. The Network knows little about seafaring.

"Umi," She says after a moment. "Please harass the giant with incessant questions, the Network requests."

"Eh?" Umi says before turning towards the giantess. She thinks it over for a moment, and then looks up towards Lavi. "Hello! This one is Umi." Pause, hmm, pause...hmm... "May I ride you, the network requests impertinently."
Faris Scherwiz Faris already distinctly does not approve of Tom. For one thing, he's fishing while the boat is moving. For two, he has /a rat with him/. For a pirate captain who is careful about what happens on his ship - and Faris always has run a clean ship - she does not appreciate this.

To Will, however...

"I think he's wandering the darkness again, him and Enkidu. I haven't seem them in awhile, either." Pause.

"It's nice to meet you, Lavi." She greets the other woman, frowning at the wheel the Pirate King is holding briefly. "Damned wind.."

"... wait."
Will Sherman "Wait I thought the Rock Hound was Enkidu?" Will asks Faris.
Faris Scherwiz Faris Scherwiz says, "... he is. I was referring to him and Gilgamesh, whom without Enkidu, I would give up for permanently lost in the darkness." Faris notes. Seriously."
Legion "Gilgamesh is Gilgamesh and is free from the bonds of fate, The Network faithfully reports." Legion says.
Lavi Purple hair /is/ an unsual sight on the water. But since she's never been on the water before, Lavi has no idea what is normal or not. There could be whole schools of swimming toupes, you never know! However, since she doesn't see any other purple blotchy spots, this one catches her attention.

"Hmm...?" She tilts her head slightly and mentally activates some sensor sweeps of the area, the machinery of her armor coming to life with a faint hum. Before she can get a proper reading, however, the titan hears her name being called and turns to wave back at Will and the captain.

"I have been practicing my strategy! However, there have been few opportunities for long matches thus far. Heartless activity in Traverse Town has kept me busy and the call of adventure keeps me on the move in what little free time I have!"

She grins broadly and turns back around, holding her arms out wide. "I have never been on a boat before, the waters in my world were unfit for travel. It is quite... relaxing." It almost sounds like that makes her disappointed. "But I am getting to see new things. That pile of weeds on the surface there, for example. What manner of creatur--"

Legion's question cuts her off, and the sheer audacity of the request makes her burst out into hearty laughter. "Ahahaha! Certainly, little one!" Kneeling down, Lavi presents her back to the Legion girl. "Hop up on my shoulder, best view in the house!"
Deidra Deidra can swim at least she thinks she can but well all of the enough. She notices what might br a seaweed slick and doesn't pay it much mind really. Avira s peerd at again by the Gargyole for a moment "hummm also hey Legion." She bobs herr head a little biot and listens about Lavi nodding a little bit. "I see." She then cringes as her choice of words. Tom on the other hand gets peered at but Tom is tom right? The Gargyole one clearly isn't human and two she's seemingly got natural blue hair from the looks of it. It seems freaky colours may be a thing out here.
Ultros Tug tug goes the fishing crane.

In a completely minigame way, ther jaws theme would be playing ever so softly in the background. Coming closer. Something swimming out there in the murky depths of the fathomless and ancient deeps.

Waiting.. Waiting. Lavi's scans pick up Abnormally Large Octopus Sign just before the--


There is a instantanous reaction between the fishing minigame, the boat smoothly chugging through the Junon waters and the large slick of bruised ocean. There can only be one reaction.

--FLAIL-- Tentacles erupt from the surrounding waters, punching out of the ocean with water streaming from their suckered lengths. The tips curl and flex, many of them trying to attach themselves to the boat. As such, Legion gets an up close and personal view of the source of them as a giant face with enormous teeth leers up at her with the aggrieved but sleepy expression of somebody whose been jerked awake in bed by having a BOAT crash into them. Thus, the sound of the bonk.

Tom feels an enormous tug on the line, It must be a big one because it's still quite some distance under water. The giant leering face of yellowed fangs yawns at Legion, showing quite an array of those teeth and a large gullet. A squeaky whine emits from the creature, then the tentacles all start to thrash as a piercing voice shrieks.

"ARHGJKHGJKJHJH-- HEY! HEEEEEEY, I was sleeping heeere. WHAT AR YOU--" The octopus blinks, then blinks again, and starts to turn BRIGHT red as they realize how many woman of various descriptions are on the offending boat type object. "..Uhee heee HEEEE" the tendrils curl up. Some of them are you know. Armored, or giant winged animals, but Ultros has never been a picky sort. No, not at all.

"Lovely ladies, doing out here in the middle of the ocean?"
Tom Magnusson Fishing minigames are the best! Sometimes you can catch really interesting things-- like merchants! They're jerks, and only show up if you stick something valuable on the end of the line, though. They also only take fish as currency for some bizarre reason, because you'd think that a fish-merchant could be better at catching fish than some landlubbing angler with a blue thing on his head.

Their loot's pretty useful, though! Heck, sometimes you can find some pretty neat weapons in the inventory of a submarine merchant- and sometimes, illegal explosives.

But there are no fish-merchants here, unless Ultros has an insurance company on the side, or something. The ship lurches, Tom grunts and the rat on his head squeaks. Just a moment later, though, and Tom suddenly feels something /big/ on the other end of his pole. He turns, staring at the whirling tentacles and the massive, yellow-toothed smiley octopus face peering out of the water. He hears it talk, and then just sort of squints.

"Right," Tom grunts and begins walking back with his line, reeling the massive spool of wire in faster than most men could manage. "Get the fish, then beat the crap outta the octopus. WILL!" Tom roars, "WE'RE HAVIN' CALIMARI TONIGHT!"
Will Sherman "Because...stuff." Will answers Umi, and sighs. He hates the ocean, much in the way he hate-


Will stands up, looking over the side of the ship. He pauses...wait that thing is talking...hitting on the women, AND has fate strings.

He looks at Tom, glaring at him, and then back at Avira, GLARING at her too. "See! What did I say? Oh 'I'm feeling lucky today'. NOW LOOK AT THIS!" he says, shaking his head.

But Will has a plan! Diplomancery!

"Hi! I'm Will Sherman, king of the Hobos, and we're trying to find...a giant Whale. It apparently eats a lot of treasure and has a particular treasure I nee-..."

And then Tom attacks it.

Tom Magnusson Tom's not attacking anything yet. Not /yet./ Right now, Tom is just reeling in! "Maybe it is! Maybe I was talking about grilling some totally UNRELATED octopus!?"
Legion Umi now thinks Lavi is awesome. She clambers up onto Lavi's shoulder, intending to sit right down on it, wrapping an arm around her neck for support. She doesn't seem to weigh all that much, frankly even a non giant wouldn't have trouble at least giving her a piggyback ride even if a shoulder might be a bit much. "Thank you." She smiles widely, even though she isn't particularly exclamatory. "This is The Network's first time on the sea too." They probably wouldn't be able to swim in tumultous waters. "Will is my boss," She explains to Lavi. "So we're going on an adventure to help him, The Network is also hoping for loot." They are pretty audacious.

Legion meanwhile is getting a facefull of octopus. Her mouth opens up in shock because, really, she's never seen an octopus like this before. She wonders if it's hostile or not--and it turns out ... ... it's possibly a sex offender octopus? The Legion closes her mouth and then looks back to Tom. "But it is not attacking us." She tells Tom. "The Network also confirms a measure of intelligence."

She shakes her head slowly, a bit ashamed to be associated with TOm right now. She really doesn't want to eat talking octopus meat. That's just ... kind of creepy!

"Nice to meet you. We are Legion, The Network introduces itself." Aww the octopus is ... why maybe? "We are looking for a giant whale. Do you know any giant whales, Mr. Octopus, The Network is unaware of the social structure of the undersea kingdom as this is her first time on a boat."

Umi says, "Omi is always grumpy after just waking up too, this one notes privately to her new friend." in a low voice to Lavi.
Aerith Aerith whirls around, grabbing her staff from the railing... and stops just as the bighueg octopus talks. She tilts her head to the right, her expression one of curiosity. Then she chuckles as the calimari tries to make moves on the general female population, and she sets one end of her staff on the deck. "Now this is interesting... something I've never seen before..."
Avira "Kind of a shame, really." Avira murmurs, "Gilgamesh is pretty hilarious." Of course, that hilarity was bound to end once the man tried to lay hands upon The Spine.

Avira wanders away now, all the way over to Tom who is fishing with what looks to be a telephone pole. "Hey Tom." She greets, leaning against the railing of the ship, staring out ahead. Was that a purple thing out there...? "How's it goin-" Just then, his line starts to bob. Avira quickly pushes off the railing and backs up, because being accidentally hit with a tree-sized fishing rod is not on her to-do list today.

Then TENTACLES shoot up around the ship. "KRAKEN! YOU HOOKED A KRAKEN!!!!" Avira immediately assumes, remembering back at that time on the beach in Costa del Sol. Though after a moment she realizes that the creature's head is pointed ELSEWHERE on the ship while Tom's line is still in the water.

Avira draws her weapon and edges to the middle of the ship. "Don't you blame this on me, Will! Don't you dare! I never wished for a kraken-" Other people identify the talking creature as an octopus.

Avira relaxes. "Oh, it's an octopus? Well then."
Faris Scherwiz "Take the wheel." Faris tells her second-in-command. He nods.

S/he walks down towards Tom, getting as close as he is, gesturing. "A pleasure to meet you, ser octopus. I am Faris Scherwiz, the captain of this ship. There are some lovely ladies on board, aren't there?"

Faris saves the girls, but dooms herself. "However, look, but no touch; I'm afraid they're all mine."
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart would normally object to what Faris said, but between a small lie and being octopus waifu, the choice is easy to make.

She could live to be in Faris' debt. Octopus royalty, not so much.

Anything said to Lavi is pushed aside for now, bracing first for the impact, and then watching the interaction with the giant octopus. She sweatdrops a bit at the whole 'RAGE-oh hi ladies'. She's used to getting hit on, but that's a new one.

She scratches her head, and lets Faris do the 'splaining for now.
Lavi Lavi helps her new little friend up as best she can with the bulk of her armor at the shoulder joints preventing much in the way of movement. "Easy there, get a good grip! Wouldn't want you to fa--"

As soon as the tentacles emerge from the water the giant knight is in battle mode, her brief diagnostic confirming the danger just a moment too late. The twin crystalline swords at her hips flare to life with a burst of neon blue light, humming with magical power like a bug-zapper magnified to incredible size.

There is no look of fear or apprehension at this unknown foe on her face; infact, she's grinning from ear to ear. This is what she's been waiting for! But then comes the big flat face covered with a dopey expression and - ooo, those teeth look pretty nasty, clearly it's going eat...! -- nope. Damnit.

Lavi gives an audible sigh of exasperation but her grin returns at the comment whispered into her ear. This little girl has an odd way of speaking to be sure. "Well, it seems friendly enough." The giant steps up to the edge of the bow, making sure not to rock too much so Umi doesn't fall into the water, and peers down at the monster. "Well hello there, big guy."
Deidra Deidra stares at teh tentacles she steps back from teh deck for a moment "TOM! WE DO NOT EAT SELF AWARE BEINGS!" The thing hasn't been overly at least yet. Shes tares for a moment at it. She's hit on ashe's not sure what to say but Tom is raving about eating it. This is going to end badly she's edging over to the human possibly planning something She's going to be polite for a moment "he's not tried to eat us he's umm flirting?" She peers for a moment. Wait did the bishy captain just claim her? Yes, yes he did. She's flattered sure and she peers again at the creature. "Hi! I'm deidra and you are?" No need to be hostile right? She also owes the Captain one.
Ultros The Ultros Is Not Amused.

"Ueeeew." The octo/Seafood EATING MUSCLE HEADS/

The Ultros sniffles, a tendril reaching over to wipe away a wistful, disappointed tear as the sparkling hearts fade from it's vision. Goodbye Shining Heaven of Beautiful Women, all of whom (Even Lavi) are somehow transformed in Ultros-Vision into skimpily clad beauties, even if Lavi is wearing some sort of Magi-tek Chainmail Jumpsuit.

The tentacles clutch at the boat even more firmly as the octopus comes back from this DEVASTATING SORROW and disappointment. Ultros pulls him(itself) up to take a better look at Legion and the others. In a charming, if somewhat squeaky voice, he addresses Legion and all the pretty ladies that have come on to Giant Octopus by Virtue of Talking to Him (It's True. He gets ALL The Ladies. ALL OF THEM) "Legion, huh? Aren't you and your friends cute as seashells." And the leer is for ALL who speak to the Octopus who are not, of course, Muscle heads. "So. Is this a pleasure cruise, ladies? Going out Whale Watching? --Not too many whales out here-- but I do know a couple of other tourist destinations." Ah. Helpful Octopus is Helpful-- up until the point that Faris lays claim over all the females on the ship. Uh Oh. The giant octopus flails at Faris. "Heeey! I wasn't talking to yoooou. NEVER TO YOU. BUTT OUT- You.. Wait" The Octopus KNOWS WHAT YOU ARE UP TO, FARIS.

The octopus squeals an in accustory voice. "You monsters! This is a slave ship, isn't it? You muscle heads are taking these poor, defenseless ladies on a one way trip to slavery. I've /suffered/, ohhh I've suffered under the unkind lash-- and I won't let you inflict your tyranny on these beautiful pearls!"

Heroic Ultros is Heroic-- if even in his own mind.

(BOSS BATTLE Fadeout/cross hatching music and transition!)
Faris Scherwiz Faris hmms.

"Ladies? Are you slaves?"

Faris asks this, seriously. "I've seen them fight-" She points at Tifa, Will, Avira, and Aerith. "They could kick my ass easily." She points this out solemnly. "As for the others, well, this is the first time -I've- ever met them, because this is a proper ship. They paid a fee to be ferried, and that's what I'm doing."

"They are mine - they are MY passengers, and I will not let them be hurt by your foolish misunderstanding."

He sighs. "Plus, do you really want to disturb the Princess on board?" GAMBLE ROLL.
Tom Magnusson "God, guys. I was kidding about the calimari thing! Mostly. I'm not eatin' something that can talk to me. You think I'd eat a talking cow? That's just awful!" The rat on his hat squeaks. Tom coughs, "Or a talking rat, I guess. Look, just deal with him while-- I--"

PULL-" The muscles all along his arms and legs suddenly tighten and bulge. "THIS--!" He grits his teeth as he reels in /some more./ "UUUUUUUP!" Tom roars, and lifts the tip of his fishing crane!

And then, something happens!?
Avira "HEY!!!!"

It was one thing to mentally undress Avira or lay claim to her as part of some pirates harem. Yeah, she doesn't like either of those. But what was absolutely horrible, completely unforgiveable, and totally unbareable...!

"I am /not/ defenseless!!" Avira angrily stomps a clawed foot onto the deck. A finger is thrust at the large and offending octopus, "See! Faris is right. I could kick his ass." SHE'S DAMN PROUD OF IT. Of course, she won't demonstrate this and actually puts away the Spine.

"Loooook." Avira drawls, "Don't mind Tom there, he's just hungry. And busy. Fishing. You're clearly not on the line so I wouldn't worry about him." Faris mentions having a Princess on board and Avira frowns. Wait, was he transporting Jasmine again?
Will Sherman Will blinks.

"Look, dude. Seriously. Stop giving the creeper eye to the la-..." Slaver ship?

Will looks mad, and instead he looks at Luck, and tells luck to kick Ultros' ass.

He looks at Faris who claims he could kick his ass, and Will shrugs, "Eh. I dunno." he says, Faris hasn't seen him fight...

LIGHTBULB. "Ooooooh! Yeah, right. Totally could kick her ass, and yours." Yup. He is totally able to do this.

"Come on buddy, seriously, We're looking for a giant whale. You're the Rocket Sturgeon on aquatic life. So don't clam up and help us out."
Aerith Aerith doesn't necessarily say anything to that, knowing that Faris is just keeping them from being hit on and/or stolen by seafood. Never mind she'd never met the captain before in her life, much less seen the man. But this talk of a princess gets her attention more than ol' eight-arms there. She doesn't let it register on an emotional level though and continues to smile at the octopus. "I'm sure we can come to an understanding about this... I mean, we're not slaves, as the good captain has said."
Legion Even in Ultros skimpy clad vision, Legion has deadpan eyes.

Legion is, however, not too keen on being laid claim to. The actual people who own her might get the wrong idea! She turns to tell Faris and is about to get a-talkin' when it seems like there is already trouble popping up and she isn't really sure how to be the peacekeeper in this situation.

"Thank you." She tells Ultros instead. "For your help. Please don't sink us. The Network is not very good at swimming." LEgion? BAD AT SWIMMING? Well that makes sense considering the bible and all. She nods to Will and says, "He says he has not seen one--"

Umi keeps a good grip on Lavi and says, "This is an amazing adventure..." She whispers to her. "I hope we don't all fall overboard and drown, though!" Though the tone of her voice sounds like that would also be kind of an adventure? She doesn't seem terribly worried. "What are you going to do?"

There are sea puns being flung about. All is lost.
Jasmine Jasmine abruptly steps out of a portal -- not one of her making, simply an old one from years past, long forgotten by whoever created it and stumbled upon by the princess in question. More accurately, she falls out; it had been opened some sixty feet above sea level, perhaps to or from some massive battleship? Regardless, she ducks, rolls, and reaches out to snatch one of Faris' very familiar rigging lines in midair. Dangling from one hand on the rope, an exuberant flush having risen to her cheeks -- that was fun! -- she surveys the situation curiously. Some people she recognizes, some she does not. The giant monster looks worrisome, but there are formalities to be observed, first.

It doesn't do to be rude to her friends.

"Captain Scherwiz," she calls downwards, in fond, warm, familiar tones -- foregoing first names only because it's good to help inflate Faris' authority in this sort of shipboard combat situation -- "I apologize for making it something of a fate accompli, but, permission to come aboard?"
Lavi The giant woman blinks at the captain as he lays claim to her and the rest of the women on board in a single daring move! Quite the statement! She's never been claimed before, it's sort of a strange feeling. And now a giant sea monster is defending her?! This day is becoming more fantastic by the moment.

Lavi grins broadly as she holds back her amusement at this strange misunderstanding, keeping out of the conversation to see what happens for now. "Don't worry, little one," she whispers back at Umi, holding one hand up to cup her voice towards the girl in an overtly conspiratorial manner. "If that happens I also double as an emergency raft."

Her attention is drawn upwards by the sudden appearance of a slender woman OUT OF THIN AIR. The runes scrolling across her eyes flicker and shift as they take a sudden flurry of readings before the portal closes. Did someone in this world also have the secrets of teleportation technology?

"Well," she says with a whistle. "That's one way to make an entrance."
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart shakes her head as well, looking at the octopus "Noone is a slave here, we're just going on a board adventure." She crosses her arms over her leather top. In octopus vision though, who knows what's she's actually wearing. Or maybe she's wearing the same thing, maybe the octopus is into leather.

Either way, it doesn't seem like the octopus is going to calm down unless he gets a girl right now x.x "Aerith, uhm... I think you should stay back right now." She blinks as Jasmin appears on the ship now. She remembers meeting her in Manhattan park when she first arrived, but that's about it. Since when can people use portals like that exactly?

Tifa wants to use portals too.
Aerith Suddenly, girl falling from the sky!

Aerith hears the sound of something falling and turns to look over her right shoulder. She sees nothing... until she goes to investigate and finds someone dangling from one of the ropes. Well that's interesting... just coming from out of nowhere like that. And now she's calling for permission to come aboard, just hanging like that. Aerith would laugh if it weren't such a precarious situation. "Captain, you might want to head over here!"
Ultros Ultros gasps, the sound like an entire shop full of boiling steam kettles whistling. "GASSSSP" The big, big teary eyes of the octopus get even more huge as soulful tears well up from the soul of the bizaare purple sea monster. "You monsters" Ultros weeps bitterly. "You /brain/ washed them. THAT'S how you got them onto your Boat of Inquity. You fiends sicken me, you and your seafood eating ways! I'll FREE YOU, MY DEARS-- THEN--"

Tom braces his Fishing Crane. He PULLLLLLS mightily, as only a Mighty Morphing Muscle Princess might be able to accomplish given time and --- Hey Kids. It's time for the new Television Series. It's a Harem Anime/ Comedy about two men, a boat, and SUDDENLY MONSTRO.

The Jaws theme, which had been playing during the entire fishing minigame goes eerily silent. A titanic head breaches the water, ramming so hard into the boat that it rocks sideways ominously.

The head, a massive bulwark of muscle and shining blue skin is /pockmarked/ with giant patches of oozing black. Then the teerh (Yeah. Actual Teeth.) the size of a well placed Tom in every socket. There are many, many Tom sized Teeth. The entire whale looms over them, the titan's giant mouth like a sheltering cave.

Somewhere, an octopus is screaming, pulling himself entirely onto the ship and trying to grab as many females as he can (it doesn't matter whom) it an attempt to SAVE the Female Protagonists from a Fishy Fate.

The teeth come down.
Tom Magnusson "YYYYYEAAAAAAAH!" Tom roars as he feels his catch suddenly explode out of the water, and then--

And then, there is a whale.

"Oh Hell n-" is about all Tom has enough time to say before Monstro's enormous jaws clamp shut over the ship, and everyone- EVERYONE- is sent hurtling into the leviathan's gut.

But, wait.



There is a primal roar as he leaps from the ship. Tom throws himself, bodily, at the massive whale's colossal maw. At the point where the jaws meet- where the upper meets the lower, Tom lodges himself- just far enough within the whale's maw that it snapping shut wouldn't also break his arms and legs like twigs.

And then he strains, trying against all possibility to get the beast's maw to hold fast for just a moment longer!
Will Sherman Will blinks...

"Hey guys, I am suddenly feeling like something bad is about to..." Dun dun....

He looks off ship. "So uh, Octopus guy. Did you say you saw no Giant Whale." Then Monstro opens his mouth.

"No...." he says, backing up. His greatest fear come to life! THEY COME TO FINISH THE JOB!

"No no no no no no!" and then...

He falls on his but, as a tentacle moves to grab him, narrowly avoiding him because of sheer lucky.

"OH <GOOSEHONK> YOU TO-..." And then Tom...

"How...are you..." and then they all fall in? The player isn't even remotely sure of what is going on anymore.
Faris Scherwiz "Yes, please, avoid the tentacle."

Faris, meawhile, does not follow her own advice, and gets grabbed by Ultros.

"WHY AM I GETTING GRABBED I AM NOT FEMALE." She declares, her manly voice coming to the foreground.

Except, oh. There's a whale.

Avira This...octopus. THIS OCTOPUS!!

Ironically, Faris's bluff about the princess spares any suspicion from Avira. Well-slightly, at least, because Jasmine drops out of the air. Now they really do have a princess aboard the ship! "Jasmine!" Avira calls out, then pauses, "...uh...Jasmine. It's me. Avira." She sounds almost apologetic about the current state she's in, even if she knew it wasn't to last much longer. They did have a cure now.

Tom's fishing adventure is successful. A little TOO successful, "Is that it?!" Avira gazes upon the whale in horror. Giant sea snakes, kraken, octopi, whales WITH TEETH. The ocean was full of horrible, horrible things.

Ultros reaches for her and Avira immediately shoots into the air, wheeling around the mast of the ship and forcing Ultros to risk getting his tentacle tangled up as she evades him.

Faris Scherwiz "OH YEAH. CREW GET ON THAT!"


Aerith Incoming slimy limb!

Even while her back is turned though, Aerith has a slight advantage known as a niggling feeling in the back of her head whenever trouble is about to come crashing down on her. Then again, that means the bigger problem isn't noticed yet as Aerith takes a leap right over the tentacle that would have snagged her. Worry about person that is dangling from a rope also supersedes other things, like a whale with huge teeth. "Forget asking for permission..." Aerith begins to pull on the rope from which Jasmine dangles from. "Tifa~! Help me out!"
Legion "Really?" Umi says, in awe. "That's amazing...." She rests her hand on Lavi's other shoulder, drumming her fingers against it quietly.

Can Tom hold open a whale's mouth? Or Monstro's mouth who is like the God King of Whales? Probably not. Still, at this point Legion recalls the mission briefing.


It does seem feasible that one might be able to just go into the whale itself without neccessarily being killed but it's not like it'd be safe what with the tons of crushing water milling about it. Ultros makes a grab but Legion ducks out of the way. She's not entirely keen on drowning that way either. For a moment, she's at a loss and starts sliding and tumbling towards the whale's mouth. the boat rocks just enough that she misses Tom and also her last attempt to grab at the ship and, instead, tumbles inside the whale's giant mouth.

"Sister!" Umi gasps. "Why I oughta...!!" She pulls up her hand, raising it to the sky and then fanning it down, sending a wave of electric power down for Monstro's blubbery body!
Jasmine Jasmine shares a bright smile with everyone who looks her way, meeting each of their eyes in turn. Then her attention is requested by Avira, and she gives the mutate a long, slightly incredulous look. But then she sees whatever it is that she sees in people, and recognition dawns in her eyes. "It /is/ you," she breathes, amazed, shocked, sorrowful -- but mostly concerned for her friend; sliding down the rope to the deck when Aerith starts yanking on it, she moves to warmly embrace Avira, tentacle monster situation be damned. "Oh, Avira. I've missed you terribly--"


The young lady's reaction to SUDDENLY MONSTRO is not unreasonable: she screams, piercingly.

But other than that instinctive expression of terror, she keeps her head, though her eyes are huge in her face, her face is about three shades paler than normal, and her shades are... well, she isn't wearing any, so never mind about that. Her hands work swiftly and skillfully to tie one of the many knots Faris' crew taught her, straight around her waist, from that conveniently nearby rope; this narrowly saves her from major trouble, as the ship being outright eaten has done nothing for her vertical orientation. She reaches out to grab anyone or anything less fortunate, in terms of a) being tied down or b) knowing how to tie themselves down.

Incongruously, she asks, sounding shaken but not stirred, "Captain, how fares the ship's supply of pepper?"
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart isn't sure what's worse now. That octopus trying to grab her, or the huge teeth coming down on them. She doesn't have much time to thinka bout either outcome though, jumping over the tentacule swipe. She reaches up for some of the ropes overhead, meeting up with Aerith and Jasmin, extending a hand toward them to help them get up higher. Higher 'grounds' still the best bet for now, considering "Better brace yourselves either, this is going to be a tough ride!"
Lavi Practically trembling from her attempt to stifle outright laughter at this ridiculous monster, Lavi starts to put her swords away when the sea EXPLODES before them. The ancient knight's eyes actually go wide in shock for a moment as she takes in the sheer scope of the beast before them, its flesh ruined and oozing. The monstrous maw goes wide and rows of gargantuan teeth are revealed as it comes crashing down to devour the fools who had dared disturb it.

A look of almost worshipful awe comes to the titan's face; her eyes go glassy, she blushes faintly and sparkles fill the air with a faint twinkling sound. Those teeth. That hideous look of primal rage. The beastial howl. This monster... it was everything she could ever want! SHE MUST HAVE IT.

The fact that the giant whale was mere moments from destroying their boat didn't even cross her mind. Instictively, the wards on her armor release with a massive hiss, steam venting from ports all across the magi-tek battlesuit at her silent mental command. A nimbus of roiling golden light begins to play across the surface of Lavi's body as she calls upon the ancient power lying dormant within. Finally, a real fight!

But then the shouting and panic breaks through her personal reverie, curses and goosehonks flying left and right. Damnit, she can't unleash that kind of power with these mortals around. Gritting her teeth, the giantess makes an annoyed clucking sound and reactivates the seals on her suit, the wispy light dying out just as quickly. Going to have to do this the hard way.

Her blade lashes out, deflecting Ultros' grasping tentacle with a sharp hiss as the power field burns at its rubbery skin in that brief moment of contact. "Hold on, kid! This might get rough!" She grins, sheathing her swords so as to hold onto Umi, and then leaps clear of the octopus, using its forehead for a stepping stone to carry them onto the outer ridge of Monstro's gumline.

Seeing Tom using IMPROBABLE MUSCLE WIZARDRY to hold the massive jaw apart, Lavi lends her own titanic strength to this task, planting both of her gauntlets around one of the massive chompers. The metal bites into the enamel with a hideous screech. Wonder if whales enjoy trips to the dentist as much as people?
Will Sherman Will looks as one of the members of Legion fall into the Giant Whale's mouth.

Will blanches for a moment...he's deathly afraid of being eaten by giant sea monsters...because...

Shut up.


"Damn it!" he shouts, jumps back up to his feet...and charges for the end of the ship and leaps into the maw of the thing right after one of Umi's sisters. Right passed Tom, and screaming all the way down.
Aerith Well that wasn't too good, was it?

Aerith ends up clinging to Jasmine's hand, high above the deck and above the mouth of the humongous whale. Aerith can't help but fire off a quip toward the pretty lady who just saved her bacon. "Awkward way to have a first meeting, huh? Name's Aerith!" She glanced toward a nearby rope. "Help me swing over there!"
Jasmine Through the utter chaos of the moment, Jasmine gets a glimpse of the brilliant incandescence around Lavi, and gives it a very sharp, very impressed, very intrigued glance. Then she's got Aerith's hand, and reaches down with the other hand to haul with all her might. "Honestly, I'm pretty used to it," she admits breathlessly. "It's lovely to meet you, Aerith." Her own name has been said at least three times in the last minute, so she saves her breath for comfort. "Don't worry -- I've got you." 'Hang on tight' goes without saying, and Tifa's said it, regardless.

The might in question is not in the Tom Magnusson league; no, her strength knows from knowing how to use what she does have to maximum effect. How to apply leverage, so to speak.

So she kicks off from the mast, her legs propelling the both of them towards the second rope. At the last second, with a groan from the strain, every fibre of her being working to close the gap, she swings her arms, and Aerith, that extra bit of distance--!
Ultros Tom uses TOMSTRENGTH on Monstro.

It's Not Very Effective!

Tom uses The Power of TOM on Monstro, back straining and muscles twisting. This is also sadly, not very effective.

But Wait, There's More! --Tom manages to hold the Whale's Jaw open for a time that could probably be measured by the Troncast but is not immediately discernable to the naked eye-- but he is not alone in his quest.

A NEW CHALLENGER has appeared! Improbably Muscle Wizardly is joined by Magitek armor. Ultros, who has the self preservations far surpassing that of the usual octopus royalty. "UUuuwuwwee! I Saiid not ?MANY/ whaaaallles" The octopus wails in fury and frustration, letting everybody go in his panic, litereally shaking them loose and this self-preservation over all completely permits him to retreat from the boat, flailing and thrashing at the giant enameled teeth in an absolute frenzy to escape even through the TIIINEST Gaps. Such as the gap being produced by Lavi and Tom by the proper application of Mind Over Monstro.

His careless backward flailing limbs strike out at both Tom and Lavi as he squeezes through a thiiin gap and escapes back into the ocean just as Umi's electrical shockwave blasts into the soft tissue interior of the colossal mouth. The massive whale reflexively spasms, then slams back down into the ocean--

Tom and Lavi are Hit with WALL of WATER. The Wall of Water advances through the whole mouthy cave, raising water levels and drawing everything inexorably back towards the looming gullet from which there IS NO ESCAPE. (Maybe)
Tom Magnusson Holding open the jaws of a leviathan is an impossible task for a single man. Tom Magnusson knew this well when he lept into its face to try against the greatest of all impossibilities- to try and delay the King of Whales. He feels his muscles and body begin to buckle against the colossus' incredible mass. And then, there is a light.

"Ha-HA!" Tom roars with laughter as Lavi braces her own supernatural power against the monster's jaw. Then, just when it seems that there is hope- just when it appears that there is a chance, Ultros happens. Tom grunts and slips, but barely holds when the octopus smashes into him- but even he can't hold against a /wall of water!/

And there is a lot of water to wall.

Tom vanishes into the massive tide, swept away. He yells one last time, whirling his rod overhead to free its hook from the beast's teeth. His hat is grasped to his chest, keeping the rat within safe--

As everything- everything- turns into the inside of a whale, and an Incredible Journey begins.
Stormfall For those of you in the audience who jumped the boat--

It is Dark Here. You may be eaten by a grue. There is a halt to screaming and a halt to fall eventually, although you have met a sticky fate. Pools of slimy material can be felt in shallow pools everywhere, and anybody who is able to feel the heartless can sense them.

They are down here in the darkness-- and there are A LOT more of them than there should be (This number being greater than Zero in Incredible Journey Dungeon Whale)
Tom Magnusson Tom's current gear includes:

One set of clothes, soaked.
One blue wind mouse, damp.
Muscles, shiny, may soon be oiled in whale ambergris

20 shotgun shells, damp.

...A vest full of C4--

Still waterproof.
Avira Relief registers on Avira's face as Jasmine does recognize her. As she lands, Avira moves to Jasmine to give her a return hug. She'd explain her current state of affairs but there is a giant whale eating everyone. So it'll have to wait.

Avira herself looks to Lavi and Tom, who seem to be almost successfully keeping the beast from chomping down. At least until Ultros comes and screws everything up. "SO MUCH FOR SAVING THE LADIES, HUH?!" she howls after him before leaping to cling to the center mast of the ship. Her claws, both hands and feet, dig into the wood. Her tail whips around to wrap about the mast. She squints her eyes shut and holds on tight, already aware that Jasmine and Aerith have tied themselves down.

"WILL!" Avira calls out, "Grab onto me! Quick!"

Then water slams into her and she hears wood breaking.

When Avira's next able to sit up, she lies in something stick. There is not total darkness around her though. About Avira's neck is a white crystal that is glowing with light. Jasmine might get the sense of wishes come true from this particular light.
Legion Legion GOES INTO THE WHALE. She is presumably still deadpan.

Luckily Legion is a functional battery. As soon as she hits the slime, Legion takes a moment to recover, wipe some goo off her body, and snaps her fingers. An illuminating source of electricity crackles around her fingers, pulsing at a constant rate. She uses it to glance around and get a feel for her bearings and also, really, see who has been chewed to Monstrobits.

Meanwhile Lavi helps Tom. "Ahhh boss!" She says as Will just jumps in. "She's still alive!" She shouts after him. How does she know? Well, she doesn't say.

Instead she gets a good view of whale. It's like she's piloting her own giant robot. if her sister wasn't now in a whale, this would be the best day of her life. Also if Lavi wasn't likely baout to be knocked in with all the rest.

Once Umi does end up in the whale with all the others she'll give Lavi a fond squeeze before returning to her sister, holding hands and providing her own source of electrical illumination.
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart is in one piece, for better or worse. Inside the whale, and among the debris of the 'crashed ship', if crashing is the right term here. There was much shaking and bumping and noise either way.

She shakes her head, brushing herself out of the large wood beams and planks that have fallen around her in the small apocalypse. "This could have been worse." Not sure how, but surely it could have been. See the positive side, Tifa.

She looks around for the others, trying to help up Aerith and Jasmine should they be in the same situation she was in.
Will Sherman Will groans, slowly waking up in the belly of the whale. Pulling himself to his feet, he shudders in revulsion at the...stickyness he found himself covered in. He tries, and fails, to hold his lunch in, and wipes his mouth afterwords. There is darkness, so much of it, but his vision is obscured. He can see Heartless, sure, but he is limited to seeing things that he can...actually see. Pitch darkness blocks his slight, just like a wall would. He looks around on him...he knows he has something...

He started taking this with him after the drip into the dark relm. It fightered the /CRAP/ out of him, next time he'd come prepared.


Will pulls it out, hitting it a few times to get the water out, and watches as it illuninates the area. "LEGION?" he calls out, "Anyone?" he calls out again.
Tom Magnusson Oh, and Tom has his fishing rod, of course. You never know when you might need a fishing rod in the belly of a whale, but that's unimportant at the moment. What /is/ important is the fact that Tom is currently face-down in the interior muscles of a massive whale. A tiny blue creature licks at his face. Its whiskers brush against his ears, tickling the outer canal with every twitch.

And soon, Tom wakes. He groans as he rises, shaking his head clear of the haze that had fallen over his vision. Tom grunts, wiping the awful sludge from his cheek with the damp side of his hat. The creature on his cheek hustles into the inside of one of his pockets and squeaks up at him, damp as everything else in this horrible, moist place.

"Ugh," he grumbles, peering into the dark. There is a light. A light in the distance. Avira's light, perhaps? Or Will's? Or maybe it's Lavi's? Tom stumbling through the night- he might seem like something far scarier than he really is. "Well--" Tom coughs.

"Looks like I can add 'leviathan' to my trophy cabinet."
Jasmine Tossed about by the wall of water, Jasmine inhales a little bit more than she ought to, and retches, afterwards, expelling saltwater from her lungs explosively. She winds up mostly spared from a sticky fate by dint of dangling from the mast from a rope. Emphasis, unfortunately, on 'mostly'; because her enormous curtain of black hair, pulled into its usual tail, falls in front of her, and the bottom six inches or so get completely doused in whale saliva or worse.

She hasn't noticed. Yet. When she does, there will be a reckoning, but right at the moment she's very much focused on something else, something worse, something all too familiar.

"...they're here," she whispers, and anyone who knows her at all knows exactly what she's referring to. But she doesn't take the bad news lying down; her slender hands clench into fists, her chin sets, and her posture lifts, once she's wriggled out of the rope and onto the 'ground', with Tifa's help. "Be ready," she clarifies, quietly but firmly. "We are not alone."

The light of Avira's necklace illuminates a tiny smile; things are scary, but at least she's surrounded by the best sort of people. And they're always full of surprises.

Glancing over at Tom, amusement creeps dryly into her tone as she points out, "Until we escape," there's no if in her voice, only when, "I think you've technically been added to /his/."
Aerith Okay, good news: Successful swing! Aerith grabs onto the nearby rope and hangs on for dear life. "Thanks! Now all we have to do is deal with the..."

Now for the bad news.

Aerith hears the rushing water before she sees it. "...Whale." EVERYONE gets hit with it, and pretty soon they're all in the gullet of the beast with only one thing in mind... everything here is sticky and icky. The other problem however is that the Voice is practically screaming in her head. Shadows move in the dark, and they don't belong to any of them... "Tifa..." She stood slowly, her staff in her hands. "...Maybe that thing that Will said about tempting fate should be heeded."

There, a light!

Aerith walked toward Avira's necklace. "We need to stick together. They're gonna come after us from everywhere."
Lavi The weight and power behind the clenching jaws is staggering. With only the strength of her genetically manipulated muscles and the enhancing power of her armor, the battle against Monstro's crushing bite is a losing one. But somehow they manage to hold.

The giantess turns her head, grinning over at Tom despite the painful effort etched into her face, thoroughly enjoying this crazy stunt more than any sane person should. She opens her mouth to shout something at him but a warning rune flashes in her eye, the soft chime heard only by her practically screaming out DANGER.

Ultros' panicked thrashing carries it past the looming threat of jagged teeth, ironically using their efforts to escape while dooming the crew in the process. A tentacle slams into her back and Lavi pitches forward, unable to maintain her grip on the slime-covered tooth and disappears into the rushing waters.

Despite her promise to Umi, two tons of metal and flesh actually don't make for very good floatation devices. The titan rides the powerful current, bouncing on the squishy surface of the whale's tounge several times as her weight pulls her down, while the flow pulls her in. The Legion girl is swept free of her grasp and ends up at the slimey pit of Monstro's stomach well before the armored knight.

Infact, it takes a few minutes before Lavi shows up, marching stoically out of the watery channel of its throat onto the surface of the disgusting islands within. She is, amazingly, still grinning like an idiot.

"Ahahahaha! Did you see that? Amazing!" Wiping her soaked hair away from her face, she glances around at the group assembled, assessing any damage or injuries. "Everyone make it okay?"
Avira "I'm alright." Avira calls out, looking around in the darkness. After a few moments, she holds up her crystal so she can see a little bit better. "...urgh. Stand back everyone!"

This is a warning. A terrible horrible warning.

Avira shakes herself out like a wet dog after this warning, flinging water and whale slime everywhere.
Stormfall The bones of ships lay here, keel and prow and jutting mast outlined in the oppressive gloom by the light brought to bear on the situation. Yellow eyed shadows do indeed punctuate the gloom, the flicker of a sword of a bandana for a moment, glimpsed between the ribs and battered prow of the hulking silohuettes. They are not all of one particular make of design. They aren't all empty either, with bones sketched out in a few places, sticky and yellowed whiteness against the glare of illumination.

In the most general sense this room functions quite like a large cavern, with the graveyard detritus surrounding them in a large semi circle that extends back into the gloom. There seems to be only one real direction to go, further back into the gloom where the faintest trace of something like terraces descend deeper into the strange space around them.

There is a faint feeling of magic and unreality within the great whale. Each and every surface like the pinkish purple 'ground' covered with slime is also pockmarked with those patches of sickness. Huge slicks of menacing black populate the farther reaches of sight even up to the 'ceiling' and the flickering sight of the heartless is much more intense near those places.

Whale slime goes everywhere. Ewww.
Will Sherman "Belly of the Whale...he was being serious. Gross." he mutters to himself, but hears voices. Friendly voices...and sees yellow eyes.

Will goes towards the friendly voices, "Everyone okay?" He says, as he turns a corner, and looking around with the Flashlight. " guess we should try and find a way out, and also the thing we're here for." he says, shrugging, "Though to be honest, I have no idea where to even start looking." he says, and looks back down at the stomach. "And also I am never going to keep anything down again. Ever."
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart shakes her head a bit at Aerith "What will come at us you think? We're inside a whale." Of course her senses aren't as finaly tuned as Aerith, but it doesn't really make sense to her as it stands.

She wonders idly about making a torch, but most of the wood from the boat is drenched, won't be much help here. Maybe there's something that was in the ship's cargo though, like some cloth and oil. There was some laterns in the boat, no? She starts rummaging through anyway. Better than staying idle until they get digested.
Jasmine Lavi's enthusiasm infects Jasmine's smile, which widens and brightens considerably, with added relief as no sounds of people who are /not/ all right reach her ears. She neatly sidesteps the carnage of Avira's hygiene routine, and only then does she notice that the bottom of her ponytail has been slimed. "Ugh," she grouses, before being distracted by Tifa. "Heartless," she clarifies succinctly, nodding agreement to Aerith's words. "Look," and she points, far more precisely than mere visual confirmation could provide, at one of the oily, dark patches.

She blinks at Will, as he reveals that apparently getting inside the whale was the original /plan/. "What are we looking for?"
Tom Magnusson Tom has a shield from the slime and the water. That shield is called 'fair warning.' He takes a step back when Avira gives the word. Slime splatters on the whale-flesh just in toe of the Musclewizard's boot. "Very nice," he says, chuckling at Avira.

And then, there is a massive mechanical supersoldier. Tom flashes a grin at the behemoth warrior, "Nice job, back there. We almost had it, if it wasn't for the ocean! Heh. Don't anyone worry, we'll get ourselves out. Then we'll see about stuffing and mounting the whale somewhere. Or maybe I'll just take a photo and put it on my wall."

"I'll need a big enough gallows to hang the thing from, though."

"SO!" Tom gestures at the One Road Through Monstranada, "I don't think it's the best way through, but I know there's at least three ways outta a whale, and only one way outta this corridor. And we've got something to look for too, don't we? Got a world shard- a quarter of a million lives, or more, waitin' in here, somewhere. Best not to let it get digested."
Legion "Will." Legion says. "We appear to have been eaten." She looks towards Will as he's vomiting blankly. "You dived in after us." She looks at him for several moments before adding, "...It appears we have arrived at our destination, if perhaps more clumsily than would have been preferred. We have vowed to assist you...however..." She looks towards the heartless. "--It seems this is no normal whale. To think the Heartless could even inhabit here, it is quite strange, don't you think? The network fails to come up with a theory."

rUmi looks about, pointing deeper in. "I guess we've gotta go that away." And she looks towards Will. "Let us go first! Thanks for the ride, Lavi! The network recklessly charges ahead!"

The Network proceeds to recklessly charge ahead albeit the Legion Umi is tugging along is a bit more hesitant about this business.
Avira "Heh, glad you're enjoying this." Avira grins right back at Lavi. At that moment, she realizes, she /really/ likes this woman. Her spirit was admirable, even if it was highly likely to be a genetically engineered trait from her birth instilled by her council. She allows her crystal to drop back down to hanging around her neck. It still glows, its intensity neither increasing or decreasing.

As her eyes roam around the room, they settle upon the black splotches. "...well...I can't say this is the first time we've seen a gigantic sea creature infested with darkness..." she remarks, glancing to Jasmine.

Slowly, she looks to Will. "So we were supposed to get eaten by this thing? What are we supposed to find, Will?"

A shudder overcomes Avira, which fortunately does not send water flying everywhere again. "There's one way out of a whale I don't think any of us want to go out. Though...a world shard here? Maybe. There has to be some reason Heartless would bother clinging to this whale."

Drawing the Spine, Avira heads off in the only way they seem to be capable of going, though at a much more measured and deliberate pace.
Tom Magnusson "Well, I can think of another reason," Tom frowns, idly observing the sickly patches dotting the inside of the leviathan. "What greater heart beats under the sea than that of the King of Whales?" He shrugs, "Maybe we aught to help our host out before we slip out?"
Will Sherman Will looks towards Avira, "Well, was a bit vague, I didn't think he ment ACTUALLY in the belly of a whale. Look...the fae are kinda <GOOSEHONK>s to each other. So I am learning." he mutters. "Sorry, I didn't actually...expect this. I was expecting heartless whale, kill it, get ...a tome. Apparently some sort of tome or book." he looks around, "Which seems to be a needle and a haystack." he mutters...

Then Legion appears, "Yeah. I did. It's a thing I do." he nods to her, before TEAM UMI BLASTS OFF AGAIN!

"Wait no! Don't SPLIT THE PARTY!" he chases in after her. "Noooooo!"
Jasmine Jasmine has never had Kingdom Hearts Cosmology 101; she'd take it in a heartbeat, if it were available, but otherwise gets by, by asking questions, in between bouts of running for her life because of her implicit /involvement/ in said cosmology 101, involvement that she always seeks to further understand. "I'm dreadfully sorry, but what is a world shard? I've never before heard the term." She sounds suitably awed by the possibility of it saving so very many lives, but is perfectly happy to admit that she has no idea why it might be able to do so, in exchange for that status changing.

The princess returns Avira's glance with a knowing -- and silently grateful -- look of her own. "Indeed not. It seems we remain ignorant of what transpires under the sea at our own peril -- and theirs." She bows her head at Tom's observation, agreeing with his sentiment wholeheartedly.

"Please, wait!" she calls abruptly after the girls who self-acknowledge their own recklessness before being exactly that. Which is not really better than being unknowingly reckless, in her opinion. "Let's all go together." Suiting action to request, she sets off alongside Avira, her well-worn combat boots making glorious squishy sounds with every step.
Avira Avira stops suddenly, struck with an idea, "You know, though, this WOULD be the perfect place for the water shard of Manhattan to be located." After a moment, she starts walking again, "But that does make a lot of sense, Tom."

Will provides an explanation. A tome? Well, at least they knew there was something to look for.

"HEY YEAH SHE'S RIGHT, COME BACK!" Avira calls after Umi. "Splitting up in here is a bad idea!"
Aerith Oh eew~

Aerith manages to turn away just in time, not even worried about her hair being a mess as long as none of it gets on her face. That would really be nasty. She takes the time to look around, wondering just how the Heartless got in here... but never mind. Umi and yet another Legion get away, and Aerith sighs, heading off after Jasmine and Avira.
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart managed to scroungue up something to make light at least, so she moves back to the rest with a latern that she found. That should help at least. "Heartless, should have known." She nods "Right, I forgot that we were supposed to seek treasures in a whale, but I didn't think it would be a live one either. Should be interesting at least." She looks over to Jasmin "I'm Tifa by the way, we met before but didn't have time to chat much." She holds up an extra lantern she got "Anyone wants to be a light bearer?" She fixes the other one to her belt.

"I wonder how we're going to get out of here honestly."
Lavi A sharp hiss of steam echoes through the cavern, thin jets of white hot air escaping a dozen vents across Lavi's armor, internal systems ejecting excess moisture and foreign particles as it runs an automatic diagnostic check.

Integrity: 98%
Power Level: Green
Atmosphere: Excessive moisture.
Unknown contaminants.
Acceptable operational tolerances.
WARNING: Hostile Lifesigns Detected

The giant frowns as this information filters through to her in a heartbeat, turning to gaze off at the distant groups of Heartless, her enhanced vision easily picking them out in the weak light. However, she knows that everyone else is merely human (or mostly human) so she calls out a warning to those who might be out of earshot of the others.

"We're not alone in here. Heh, these guys will set up shop /anywhere/ it seems."

The darkness of the stomach-cave is banished suddenly by brilliant neon blue fire as the magical power fields flare to life within her swords, shining out like beacons. Lavi holds one up over her head to maximize its reach, striding forward to the front of the group to interpose herself between the shadowy creatures and everyone else. Except for the Legion girls, who choose to recklessly charge in, which earns a disapproving frown from the knight.

"Hey! Stay with us! You don't know what kind of crazy things live in here!" She stomps after them, moving much faster than someone her size should be able to even with the massive strides.
Stormfall Further on, in Deeper Whaletown,

The difference becomes a little more pronounced where Actual Whale is Supposed to be, there are Ledges. In fact the gloomy interior of the whale is not as gloomy because of strange bioluminescent fauna that lives down here in Deeper Whaletown. The slime remaining, coating every surface. Traveling across the ground is an exercise in squishing, as if moving across thick foam.

The layout is that of a series of terraces, circlular platforms really, leading further downwards. At the bottom tier, there are tunnels to left and right and a third coated almost completely with a thick layer of black slime.

The Heartless continue to scuttle in the background and with the addition of so many light sources, they almost seem to teem over the lower terraces and the ancient ships that peter off towards the bottom.
Legion Legion is more of a VVVVV than a VVVVVV. Only five of them!

Umi wants to be the one to help Will out, to prove herself perhaps and the desire to prove oneself leads to recklessness. Combined with an inherent lack of self worth that comes from being a Legion, well, it leads one prone to recklessness. She already thinks of herself as an action star as is, lately. Of course part about being reckless means that when other people are telling you to stop you're being reckless, you're usually too reckless to listen!

Well Umi is. Legion says, "Ah--perhaps...we should...?"
BUT NO DICE UMI HAS AN OUTGOING PERSONALITY. Legion is way too passive. She does, however, slow down upon seeing DEEP WHALETOWN which might provide some time for the others to catch up.

"Mm.... Where do we go now?, The Network wonders..." Umi says.
Legion looks around the complex networks, some teaming with heartless. "Mmm... there are a lot of heartless, The Network would suggest searching the ships first once the others--"

"Got it!" Umi says and starts electro hopping down towards the ships. Legion readies her rifle from above to cover but, really, mostly to wait for Will and the others who, to this Legion, seem eminently sensible.
Tom Magnusson If there is anything that Tom has learned as a Vespertine Investigator, it is this: To walk boldly into the night is the best defense against it. To flee and to show fear is to invite it to devour you whole. And so Tom strides forward, into the depths of Whaletown. He vaguely feels like he aught to have some kind of antitoxin on hand, and is bizarrely relieved when he realizes that there are no giant, horrible, blood-spewing, plague-carrying insects, nor an endless, disease-ridden swamp to slog through.

He's not quite sure /why/ he is relieved, only that it seems like a fairly reasonable feeling to have.

"So," Tom says, hopping up one whale-terrace. He lifts a lantern, held at the end of his fishingpole, to the endless sea of luminescent flora and fauna infesting the walls of the Whale's inner belly. He peers down- down at the graveyard of ships, and the blackened tissue at the belly of this whale. "Guys. I think we might want to consider clearing out the source of these Heartless. I don't want to deal with a Shadow Leviathan."

And then Umi starts hopping down. Tom sighs. "We... Should probably follow her, too."
Aerith Aerith can't help but notice all the scuttling little creepers as they shift around for a better angle from which to eat everyone that has a light source, external or otherwise. Yet she continues forward, trying not to think about the potential attacks from the rear or side. Everyone else was probably already worried enough as it was.

Were it not for that, she could have admired the scenery a bit more, and the strange foam-like substance that the ground beneath them seemed to be. It was almost bouncy in a way, and that... twisted her brain a bit, since they were in a whale of all things. The obvious solution would be to follow Umi into the depths of that ship wreck, and Tom suggests as such.

Aerith gives Jasmine a glance and a smile. "We don't want cute little girls getting gobbled up, now would we?"
Avira "Hmmm." Avira hops after everyone, perching atop one of the bouncy 'terraces' lining the inner floor. She hops up and down a little for a moment, perhaps testing it further before she threatens to lose her footing. Upon that, she stops.

"I've gotta agree with Tom." she says, looking for the black slime slicked corridor. That felt like a likely culprit pointing to an infection's source. Avira heads towards THAT tunnel.
Jasmine Jasmine favors the martial artist with another smile. She has an inexhaustible supply, all of them the genuine article. "I remember! In Manhattan. It's nice to see you again, Tifa." The need for lanterns seems obviated by Lavi's awesome swords and Avira's equally awesome necklace, so she doesn't bother accepting one.

She cocks an eyebrow at Avira's mention of a 'water' shard, though, clearly still hoping for explanation, having received none at all from Tom, whom she originally asked. Now isn't the time to press it; this is a pretty serious situation, not a tutoring session. Slipping and sliding on the foam, she eventually finds it easier to skate than to walk. Thus she is transformed from awkwardness to seemingly effortless grace, quickly learning how best to keep her balance.

"Perhaps it's unfair to conflate 'black' with 'Darkness', but that path looks promising," she observes softly, re: the ominous third. She hasn't seemed overly distressed by the ominous small army of Heartless, once originally observed; it is woefully normal for her. "Certainly, we mustn't leave without helping this poor creature." She rests a hand gently on a 'wall', having gone from terrified to sympathetic at a fairly typical rapid pace.

Returning Aerith's friendly look warmly, she nods, setting her slime-weighted ponytail to swinging. "That's not going to happen," she says evenly.
Will Sherman Will is already running after Umi and Legion. "UMI! COME ON! SERIOUSLY! There is being reckless and being stupid! Your crossing into stupid!" Okay no, she's been there for a while, but Will is trying to be nice to his friend! Finally, he would catch up to Legion, who has stopped and taken a rifle position. "Where is..." he pauses, "She didn't did she?" he sighs. He looks down into the depths of darkness below...

"Screw it." he says, and leaps in after Umi.


It is so stupid the animator left, and all you get is a shitty drawing of Will falling down after Umi.
Lavi Lavi's attempts to intercept the Legion twins is impeded by the spongey surface of the whale's stomach, her heavy boots sinking nearly knee deep with every step. Thick sticky strings of slime cling to the armor each time her feet rise from the fleshy substance, which earns a quick look of disgust. "Hrngh... going to take me a while to get that off."

She pulls up alongside the others at about the same time, using her blade to cast light down into the chasm and taking a moment to peer down after Umi. "The source? In my encounters with the Heartless, we never discovered from whence they came. Though it might be possible to destroy those already present."

The titan glances around again, taking stock of the incredible numbers of the creatures present. "Hmmm... that could take a while though." She suddenly grins and looks over at Tom. "Care to make a wager? I'll take one side, you get the other. First one finished wins."
Deidra Things have been bad there have been Whales, there has been tentacle creature who may be royalty also she's now got a whale of a tale to tell ye. For now she's well just a little ahem supried at the nature of this place and it happy to be alive. She never expected to get eaten by moby dick.
Stormfall The pocket lint of a thousand worlds meets Umi as she searches the ships and their bones. The weathered remains of steering wheels amidst a rat's nest of tangled and rotten ropes. There is a little munney scattered here and there, mostly amongst the part of the ships that are full of bones.

HORRIBLE BONES of those who never left this place alive.

But, you know. Still. Munny! There is shiny things after all. Magpie Mode Unlocked.
% The ominous slicked over third entrance is bigger than the other two. The pulsing corruption twists and heaves.

Those of you in the audience with reckless bordering on stupidity see the bottom terraces first. You also notice that they are QUITE occupied already by the Heartless. These bottom terraces right in front of the entrance sealed off by corruption are teeming with Heartless, and when something PLOWS through the entrance, shredding it-- there is no missing that even more have joined the party. An opposite armor, gleaming black with wicked claws, is followed by an assemblage of Pirate heartless with their swirly eyes and bandanas.

A call goes out, the twisted BLAAT of a horn that resounds through the upper reaches and the heartless start to pour out of the woodwork towards the adventurers.
Tom Magnusson Tom stares as Will hops down the hole after Umi. His eye... Twitches. "God-- Okay. OKAY! I'll be a second. You guys hold on a sec." Tom unlocks the reel on his fishing pole--

And then there are heartless.

"Goddamnit," Tom growls. He turns toward the rushing tide of Heartless- and glances to the beasts down below. He sighs, setting the little blue rat safely inside a buttoned compartment on his belt. And then...

And then Tom leaps down, onto the slick slope of awful, horrible whalestuff. The wave of darkness down below is suddenly interrupted by a massive and /devastating/ falling knee. The wave buckles and blasts backward, before another wave closes in, slashing and cutting at Tom's chest.

Blood drips from fresh wounds. Tom... Grins.

"ALRIGHT YOU BASTARDS!" he roars. It is a terrifying, primal roar. Powerful muscles twitch and then /flex,/ brimming with incredible inner strength. His call goes out to Avira and to the massive woman- Lavi. It is a roar of command! "Let's /DEWORM/ this submarine sunnuva<baleeted>!"


Avira The questioning look by Jasmine gets her an 'I'll tell you later' glance from Avira. She could easily trust Jasmine with the information she heard about Manhattan and its world shards. But another time, because her effort to get to the corrupted tunnel is roughly waylaid by a sudden mob of Heartless crawling out of the woodwork to oppose them. Hissing, Avira suddenly finds herself in a tangle with a pirate-type Heartless before she breaks away and moves into the air, dragging her attacker with her.

Power fills her and it is thankfully power not associated with the darkness still clinging to her. With a roar of her own, she lifts the Heartless high above her head, then spikes it into another Heartless on the ground.
Aerith They just come in a monster rush, and Aerith can't help but wince at the blast of the horn. Tom is quickly overwhelmed after the initial charge, taking several blows. Yet he still stands and Aerith finds that a good sign. Without a second thought, she leaps toward the fray Avira's gotten herself into. A few of the Heartless take note of her and she ends up having to guard against their attacks, one of them getting a lucky shot in. Aerith however does not seem to mind as she swings her staff in wide arcs, hoping to knock several of them away.
Lavi "Ha ha ha! Now it's getting interesting!"

A burning streak of blue light blazes into the Heartless ranks as they charge, Lavi's deadly crystal sword carving through several of the bolder pirates in a single slice. She strides forward to face the worst of the charge, attempting to draw attention upon herself with broad sweeping strokes that leave bold neon afterimages lingering in the air for all those who look upon them, as if one were staring at a lightbulb for too long.

"Stay behind me!" The giant calls to those remaining on the upper platform, turning long enough to glance and see who exactly that is. She isn't sure just how capable they are at fighting and it'll be easier to thin the worst of the threat if they stay together. "Keep your distance, though," she adds. Six foot swords have a nasty habit of collatoral damage.

The onboard computers respond to her sudden shift in physical activity, registering the heightened heart rate and trace amounts of adrenaline associated with battle. After a quick confirmation, which she gives via mental command, a cocktail of battle drugs pours into her system. Almost immediately fire surges through her veins, bolstering muscle strength and sending a frenzied surge of aggression through her body. Lavi's grin becomes somewhat disturbing, enjoying this a little too much.
Will Sherman Will lands on one of the ships, after platforming down.

"Umi...seriously, don't seperate. There is being reckless, and forgetting the first rule of adventur-" CRASH. Will turns, slowly, turning towards the rumble. And then BOOM. A opposite armor crashing through the barricaded entryway. The area is already teaming with heartless, and made worse by the fact that now there is a heartless boss. "Umi, get behind me." he says, dropping into a sort of hobo-fu stance...

Heartless run everywhere, and the armor comes crashing down at him. He rolls to the right, under the massive fist, and back to his feet as he focuses on defense first.

There were many strings...his hands come up, as he grabs three, one string to himself, one string to the two Legionairs, and one string that Jasmine can see appear briefly. The strands of fate solidify as he runs his special brand of magic through it, reenforcing their 'fate'.

Things would be more likely to miss them, their already naturally fast movements enhanced by stacking the deck of luck.

Then he is ready to fight, eyes narrowing on the heartless, "Alright big boy. Lets do this."
Legion "The Network notes that Tom Magnusson's sudden irritation with impulsive action is, narratively speaking, an example of poetic justice." Legion says from her position near the top.

Meanwhile Umi searches the ship and finds... like fifty munny maybe? She informs the Legion up top of this and the Legion transmits a positive response in return. Look, adorable is adorable but it don't pay the bills.

Umi says, "No book here!" as Will tumbles down after her. "Guess I should've followed my instinct and went to the most dangerous place on the whale first, The Network sadly laments their failure."

But at this point, the heartless go into attack mode. The one up top is pretty safe from them, leaving Umi to more or less take the brunt of their assault. She is clawed from her position and knocked through a ship wall. Will knows from experience, however, that Umi has had worse.

"This is lucky!" She tells Will, picking herself up and grinning at the Heartless that struck her, spitting some blood to the side. "I can show you what we can do, The Network's fortunes have reversed?"

She really does take after her mentors. Fanning forward her arms, electricity crackles up her arms and unleashes a wave of it, trying to drain the heartless of power even as the Legion up top sprays down firepower at the heartless from above.

Umi does, after however, follow orders. "There are rules??" She asks.
Jasmine The tide of darkness comes in, but Jasmine is the eye of the storm of battle, swift and so calm as to be almost serene. Avira may finally get to see what the fog concealed from her, one fateful day on Faris' ship. She moves around the Heartless pirates with impossible finesse, ducking cutlasses, rolling past muskets, and literally skating to a better vantage point, where she can get a clear sense of what's happening. And there, she comes to know her enemy. By this point, she's completely covered in slime, but she's past the point of caring. Not when she knows what to do.

"Tom, Avira, please hit the legs, get it off balance!" Jasmine calls across the battlefield in a clear, clarion voice. The voice of someone who's fought this monster before. And the voice of someone who, while confident enough to give orders, would never be so thoughtless as to omit 'please'. "Then Will, knock it down, to block the path they're coming in through, it'll buy us some time to handle the others!"
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart ews a bit at the constant sliming here... "This is rather nasty..." But she doesn't have long to dwell on this before the horn blows up "... that's, not really a good thing isn't it?" And that's quite the understatement she realizes when the heartless start pouring out of the walls.

The barmaid eeps audibly "Is this whale entirely made out or filled with heartless or something?!" The quantity seems abnormal to her. Is there somethign attracting them over?

Either way, the first one that gets close gets met with a swift kick to send it flying into the other ones closing in behind it "I'm all for sticking together, even more now!" The first charge pierces her shoulder, more nasty than she expected as well, the rest jumping on her as if attracted by blood. A small pile of them over the barmaid, before she punches her way out of it. Its not their individual strenght that scares her, but their numbers right now.
Stormfall The waves of heartless on the upper terraces are no match for six foot crystal swords, or the knees of the mighty morphy muscle ranger. Also they have somewhat of a problem with Avira. The transformed VALKYRI spikes the heartless, the flailing pirate bowling over multiple others in a pathway cut through the host like a scythe through wheat. Heartless bowling pins go flying, but the host is too few and too numerous to be disuaded for long.

Aerith knocks several Heartless away, sending them flying with arcing swings that clear them from her pass until a Pirate heartles JUMPS onto the staff, clinging on and trying to swipe at her with a flailing sword.

Legion's spray of concentrated firepower and electronic chincanery drain the heartless, making them sluggish and slow witted but it proves to be a less long-term solution than advertised as the rest simply crawl over the afflicted members, lunging forwards at Legion just as Umi has to tend to SUDDENLY, ARMOR CLAW-- as the Opposite Armor plows into the group on the lower terraces, claws spinning and armor clanking.
Deidra Oh great heartlss a whole lot of heartless coming this way. All of the heartless she's yet to get too mych attention but the shear volumn of the littl things are enough to get some aggression her way. It's not long before she's striking abck however moving with fist and Talon, she's not even had time to go for her spell book yt!
Will Sherman The claws come down, Will is unable to move, releasing the strings of fate for a brief moment, that moment the Heartless took, slamming it's hands down into Will, causing it to bounce off the ground and fall into one of the ship's mast. Sliding down, he groans, before hitting his feet against the ground to recover. His eyes focus on the heartless...these things...their fate were inverted on themselves...but they still have fate...twisted fate, but they still have them.

His hand focuses a strange power, a sort of magic that is and is not like traditional magic. It's like he's taking the stuff of spells and using it to grab ad something tangible, but only to him. He runs towards the heartless, slipping under it to try and confuse it, and twists behind it. His fists slamming into the back of the armor. Once as a punch, a second to try and kick the back of a leg, before the final strike...

Grabs the strange tangled mass of strings, and YANKS randomly. "Umi! NOW!"
Tom Magnusson Claws cleave into Tom's arms and legs as he draws them up to defend against the shadowy onslaught. Blood drips from yet more new wounds as he suddenly finds himself covered in achingly painful gashes and tears. But as his vital fluids pour from his arms, the mighty Muscle Wizard yet finds himself grinning.

This fight-- This fight is /just beginning./

"Alright! Got it, lady! I'll do you /ONE BETTER!/" His voice roars over the great din of the heartless and their heroic counterparts. Tom digs his foot into the thick whale tissue and then hurtles forward like a rocket made of MAN. Tom yells, surging forward to seize the full metal Heartless by the leg.

He strains. His muscles tighten and /burn/ with the wonderful ache of exertion as he gathers up around the monster's heel. His legs slide backwards, his stance widening. Tom's back arcs, and he pulls /UP!/

As Tom attempts to... Suplex the Heartless. From its ankle. Or, failing that, to simply wrench the limb free from its place on the beast's body. Let's see if he succeeds!
Jasmine Jasmine's luck begins to run out as the Heartless start to swarm her. Her expression seems oddly distracted, fierce concentration writ large across her narrowed eyes and pursed lips, even before they start slashing up her robes and veil with their dreadful blades; that's because she's now fighting a battle on two fronts. One is to handle the external threat -- which she does with great panache, with such expedients as spinning backfists and flying leap kicks... onto one of the rotted masts, sending it crashing down towards the army. If she's lucky, it might even start rolling. If she's unlucky, at the very least, it might break up their formations, such as they are.

"Look out below!" she calls helpfully.

The other battle is entirely internal, but far more important, as she keeps a desperate grip on the force that surges within her, all too eager to flow into friend and foe alike, to strengthen and purify them respectively. But to allow this would be to draw down far more opposition, in the mid-to-long-term, and they are currently inside a whale in the middle of the ocean. Even if they could get away, it might bring trouble to poor Monstro.

So she fights with fist and foot and brain, but will and heart most of all.
Aerith Aerith barely slid to the right, a tiny pirate cutless grazing her cheek. Okay, that's more than close enough . She makes her best attempt to pitch the Heartless off of her staff, only to find another immediately in front of her. Aerith pokes her staff forward and brings the back end down in a smash to the head in a one-two combination.
Tifa Lockhart Another attack and yet another wounds adds to the barmaid's tally, her fist coming to connect with one jumping at her, crunching it down. Do heartless have bones? Because she broke something by the sounds of it, and it wasn't her.

Seeing Jasmin getting swarmed, she comes in for the rescue. Well maybe the princess doesn't need all that much help either, but two is still better than one. One jumping at Jasmin gets met with a roundhouse from Tifa, sending it flying sideways into a pile of discarded, swallowed wooden crates "Let's do this all together, these are just small fries."
Lavi Several Heartless lunge at the giant knight from all sides, her dazzling lightshow doing the job of drawing the attention she craved. The shadowy claws and cutlasses strike home in several places but the masterful plating of her armor rebukes their pitiful attacks, leaving naught but scratches upon its elegant surface.

"Ahahahaha! Is that all you've got?!" Her hands swing down to her sides as several ports open up across the back of her gauntlets, stub-nosed gun barrels clicking into place as they emerge from their docks. A thunderous series of explosions rips through the cavern, bright bursts of yellow muzzlefire belching into the darkness to drive the brazen little creatures away with fiery red tracers that burst into flame upon impact with the slimey surface of the stomach.

"You'll have to try harder than that!" Lavi's heavy boot rises up out of the muck and slams down towards the chest of a pirate Heartless, kicking it towards the clustered ranks with the force of a cannonball.

The crystal swords begin their dance again, weaving a deadly pattern of impossibly perfect lines all around the titan, carving apart anything foolish enough to try and bypass their grid of dazzing death.
Legion Legion presses her hands to the ground as the Heartless seem to be clamboring up top unleashing an electromagnetic pulse that sends her spinning into the air. She spins once and then fans a gesture to her feet, charging them them--the lapping of low voltage electricity extending to Lavi's shoulder armor--allowing her to land on top readily without major issue.

Maybe she was a bit jealous of Umi. "Understood."

Umi has more trouble. The Heartless slams into her again, knocking her to the side--but not before she manages to catch the Heartless with a small pulse of electricity. "Aha..." She says, wiping blood from her mouth as she glances to Will.

"Will. Is the Network...helpless?" Apparently her poor performance so far combined with Avira's angry declaration made her start thinking abotu that.

She shakes her head a bit as Will gives some instruction. She nods once and focuses--slamming her hands together as she unleashes another storm from her hands for the armor.
Avira In spite of taking to the air, she doesn't seem any more 'protected' from the onslaught of attacks. More specifically, she doesn't get a chance to dodge the flying fist and appears to be one of the first ones hit before she's knocked to the ground. Angrily, she picks herself back up, then takes to the air once more with a few quick flaps of the wings.

Her attention drops to the opposite armor. Take out the 'legs' huh? "Gladly."

Avira's wings suddenly snap inward and she goes into a sharp divebomb like a hawk dropping in to scoop up prey. Instead of scooping anything, she leads with the pointy tip of the Spine like a jouster might, slamming into the Opposite Armor multiple times.
Stormfall Strikes come down. Counter attacks are given. Lines are drawn in the all too slimy terrain.

The black armor of the Opposite Heartless shrieks and groans as Will punches, then kicks into it, less from the force of the blows and more from the manipulations and manifestations of it's twisted fate being tampered with.

Meanwhile. Tom is managing to Suplex a giant suit of armor-- from the ANKLE. There is a moment of horrible unreality in the same place that was when he tried to stop Monstro from chowing down on them all, but it passes and the Armored Heartless slams down onto the squishy turf. It is further lanced by electrical storm as Umi follows instructions and unleashes on the larger heartless and Avira slamming into it multiple times. Each time great slashes and rents are left in the black armor.

Regrettably, it seems FAR less than down for the count and the black starts to turn an OMINOUS red color. 0(Because Ansi is ominous) The pirates surrounding the full metal boss guy break out the booze, calling out with another BLAAAAT of the horn. Some of the Pirate Heartless break off the attack to retrieve cunningly concealed and stored barrels of shadow rum from ther broken ships.

In the meanwhile. Kicks and Punches. Crystal Swords and Waving Staves!

The Mooks break out the booze, while others descend on those still in the upper terrace. Legion is assaulted by several trios of drunken pirates, the cutlasses weaving in random patterns as the swirly eyes of their bandanas rotate back and forth.

Lavi finds that No, this is actually NOT all that is on order or available because as much as the heartless are chopped, spun, pureed or cast into a dazzing dance of doom-- More of them just seem to be descending RIGHT on the heels of the others. Multiple Rum Crazed Pirates start clambering the 'walls' leaping down to try and attach themselves to the armored giant.

Tifa smashes Pirates into Crates, only to find some of the crates are just as alive as the rest of the Monstrous Whale/Heartless-- Location they are in. Several Crates sprout legs, skittering over and slashing at her while Pirate Heartless throw THEM at Tifa instead of the other way around. Meanwhile, Aerith bonks the approaching heartless. BONK. POKE. SMASH. The Heartless attempt to attack her from behind as the ones in front retreat to go give booze to their rum crazed compatriots.

Alas, a rolling mast that makes bowling pins out of the heartless as it crashes and clatters down into the lower terraces sends Heartless flying in all directions-- but they grab onto the walls or even the ceiling and the formations, such as a swarm can have a formation, is not greatly disturbed.

Jasmine The failure of Jasmine's rotted mast gambit to crush all Heartless before its path is disappointing, but Tom's prowess is /amazing/, and that observation wins out, when it comes to her mood. "Well done!" she calls over, when suplexes have been suplex'd. To say nothing of Avira knowing how to /fly/, and Spine-spearing, to boot. Or Lavi's crystal swordslashing, as dangerous as it is beautiful.

Suffice it to say she's impressed.

The princess favors Tifa with a grateful smile as the older woman wades in alongside her. "Thanks!" she exclaims, snatching up a nice sharp wooden stake that was part of a crate about two seconds prior... then dropping it with a shriek when it sprouts legs to stomp on it, instead. Turning to fight back-to-back, she lashes out with a familiar-looking roundhouse, followed by a series of spin-kicks for good measure.

Although endlessly optimistic about the outcome of this fight, a tiny bit of sadness lingers in her eyes, as she imagines the people these Heartless used to be. "Someday -- we'll learn how -- to do better -- than this," she vows, to herself and to the Heartless, the sentence punctuated by a throw per phrase, as she turns their force against them, guiding pirates around and above her gracefully, and into each other, instead. "We'll save you all -- I promise."
Aerith Aerith stumbled forward as she's pounced on from behind, a pirate on her back and one coming from in front. She does the only thing she can to stop the incoming blade and tries to toss the one trying to cut her head off into the one trying to gut her. She can't do that much for her friends right now, but she can do just enough... by shunting some of her Spirit Energy into Tifa and Jasmine in an attempt to give them a second wind!
Tifa Lockhart The crates didn't appreciate being used as heartless-throwing targets...

And the barmaid either! She gets pummeld pretty hard as the heartless are flung back her way, and the crates-with-teeth decide to take a snack on her. No, she's not really pleased. Aerith's buff though is appreciated, phewing a bit as she kicks the crate out of the way.

"Okay, let's see how you like this then." She charges a fist up, launching herself forward toward a pile of living crates. But instead of hitting with her first, its a leg sweep that heeps, hoping ot use her momentum and strength to toss the creates up in the air. As they are airborne, they are met with Tifa's left fist, punching upward into a strong uppercut, followed by the flow of water (or so it seems at least). And before they can even touch ground again, the right fist is released, the explosive energies dispersing through the air.
Tom Magnusson Of the few things that no man can ever be denied in any nation that claims to be civilized, the right to charge a derelict ship and steal its rum is among the most inviolate of priviliges. Nobody ever said anything, however, about Heartless.

Still, Tom is a gentlemen. The Heartless run off, they gather booze, they break it against the upper terrace- where Tom certainly is not. The beasts barrel a broken mast down. The wood smashes into Tom's upraised arms, splintering the rotten material on impact. He shakes his limbs out, dislodging a handful of splinters that had managed to bury themselves in his sleeves. But things are getting... Interesting. Interesting indeed. Tom takes a moment, focusing his will into his arms and legs, torso and back. For a moment, all is still--

And then, he blazes with a sudden, inner brilliance. Tom exhales. "Alright. Come on."
Avira On the final divebombing pass, Avira pulls up and flips in the air, 'landing' against the fleshy side of the cavern. Her claws latch on to the pulsing, wiggling wall, anchoring there as she stands sideways. Her focus widens again, the seemingly endless numbers of Heartless here before she starts to actually sink into the wall due to their attackers.

Squealing, Avira pulls herself away before she's dragged down too much, the crystal around her neck seemingly helping with this goal.

The familiar sight of Avira's ice magic fills the air, bringing a blue glow that clings to the Spine. Even in this form, it was impossible to divorce her away from the skill she had fought so desperately to attain.

Flying down low, she brings the Spine down overhead, transfering a curse of frost onto the Heartless. Pushing off the armor, she lands briefly, then lunges forward, sending an upwards blow to the Opposite Armor, flinging it into the air!
Lavi Dozens of cryptic runes scroll past Lavi's vision as she fights, battle data being processed and condensed into a shorthand format that only she can read. Enemy movements are displayed and highlighted, trajectory paths for projectiles calculated and suggested responses delivered, all in the spans of mere moments.

One particular symbol catches her attention and the knight ceases the spin of her whirling blades long enough to allow the small girl to safely alight on her shoulders. "Get a good grip, little one," she grins up at Legion, tilting her head to peer at her. "This could get /messy/." She doesn't seem to think that's a bad thing from the joyful way she says it.

As if on cue, the rum-raged masses surge forth again, scrambling up the walls and along the slimey ground in a tidal wave of shadows, blades, and crates. The knight stands her ground, a monument to resolve and unwavering fortitude as the Heartless smash into her from all sides. Claws and blades strike out again and their sheer numbers allow for several solid blows, cutting edges working their way into slender gaps or lashing her unprotected head.

Lavi does her best to keep her passenger away from the worst of it, pushing back with her titanic strength against the crush of frenzied bodies. A look of amusement crosses her face momentarily as she concentrates, healing chemicals flooding into her body via automated dispensers. "So that's how you want it? Heh. Fine. Here we go, kid!"

With a monumental leap, Lavi erupts from the sticky mucus and sea of Heartless, taking to the air though sheer strength. And a few moments later gravity reasserts itself, bringing the incredible weight of the knight down amidst the creatures with an explosion of kinetic force. Immediately, the massive swords lash out again but their movements are faster and bolder, carving into everything within reach until only a blue whirlwind of death remains.
Will Sherman Will gets caught in the frenzy of heartless, and the Opposite armor and falls back while Umi has a exestensial crisis. "Of course not!" he grits his teeth, trying to keep himself cheery...pushing down his own frustriation. Avira comes down, like a bat out of hell, to smash the thing good. "Avira! Nice! Thanks!" he shouts at her and crouches...

His hands move...

"Umi! I am going to need you to do something crazy as hell! Follow me, fire your next attack right at my back, I trust you not to miss." he says, and...

He runs RIGHT at the Opposite armor, kicking off the ground and stepping on Avira's shoulder, leaping at the monster.

"NOW UMI!" he shouts at her...

His fist swinging, aiming to drive it right into the face of the opposite armor, aiming to flip around it, dragging his fingers into the Opposite armor's string as it starts to rip downwards!
Legion DRUNKEN PIRATES?! Legion uses her Laviperch to zap the pirates from a safe distance, but she's holding her position. She looks down towards Umi. Shadow rum is a strnage concept. Legion elects not to think on it for very long. The fight seems to be a lot tougher than anticipated, especially for Tifa, and Umi makes a decision. "Emi!" She shouts, flinging a munny coin up into the air--the coin suddenly shimmers with electrical force and ZIPS towards the Legion-on-Lavi's hand. She catches it but says, "That is not my name." She says before pressing a hand down on Lavi to hold herself steady.

Umi says, "Got it!" And she steps out of the way, using the moment to draw out her own rifle and fire off a few shots from her own gun, intending to hit it from the side, keep it pinned down.

Legion looks down at Will. Can she really just fire down at him even knowing he intends to move out of the way? That is his plan right? Well, she supposes he wouldn't offer the opportunity for no reason and he cannot be destroyed therefore--the risk of failure is minimal.

"As you wish Sherman." Legion says, holding the munny coin in front of her, pointing it down as she aims it at the Opposite Armor.

Electricity continues to cracke around her, subsuming her own body. Cronus isn't here. This surprise that she has for him. The electricity focuses into it coalesces around her hand and coin.

"Now!" She shouts, and fires!

A hefty electric eruption bursts from her arm and into the coin, sending it propelling at super-high speeds, the coin vanishes in the light, a pure electrical explosion traveling along the flight path in a singular destructive line for the heartless.

Hopefully it won't be going THROUGH Will on the way there.
Deidra Deidra is up to her eyeballs in heartless she's not really in a postion to use her magic. She's geting just the uver unholy hages beat out of her but them. She's not a happy Gartgyole she's hurt prety badly to the point she's chuging a potion before letting out a inhuman roar and leaping on the nearest of the priates she's not happy and she goes to work with her talsons just trying to rip into them. Throw them about and otherwise get them the heck out of her face. For those who don't know her they might be suprised her eyes are flat out glowing red.
Stormfall Monstro groans.

The sound is absolutely deafening, a low rumble that shakes all of the immediate world. An earthquake sends the heartless bowling over like blades of grass, rippling waves being flung in all directions, shaken from the walls as the gigantic Dungeon Whale thrashes. The sickly patches across the whale start to contract, all that dark energy being reabsorbed into the main heartless as it turns completely red.

Red is nevera a good color.

Deidra is not Shiny Happy Gargoyle. Rending Assault renders so many heartless into so many piles of green orbs, munny and shadow goo that a small dead zone appears around her. The upper tier mooks seem to have difficulty holding their ground especially with the titanic thrashing of the entire cavern around them.

The Ominously Red and Flashing Boss lets out a tortured scream of twisting, wrenching metal as it contorts into a new shape. It's body twists and distorts -- The munny coin Rail Gun System arrives precisely on time.

The supercharged coin rockets from Legions hand, punching a hole straight through the helmet and blasting it away. Will-- as predicted is simply not where the beam of destruction lances through the air with a thunderous BOOM of passage, the thread /ripping/ and tearing under the assault.

Ice magic slams into the armor. Avira knocks the entire construct into the air as large swathes become wreathed in frost. The entire armor collapses into a junk pile of claws, feet and torso, the twisted fate holding it in this part of reality weakened to barely an echo

Until the Heartless roll out the rum. They pass it, hand to hand, shattering the Barrels across the armor so that the fluid soaks the discarded pieces.. and the living armor stirs.

Meanwhile, Lavi carves into the sea of heartless that is quickly thinning, creating large swathes of dead space where no Pirate, Crate or other creature dares advance. Tifa and Jasmine have created their own dead zone, and those are interlocking on the upper terrace as the heartless count plummets in constant plumes of dark vapor and munny. Fists connect, crates and pirates alike are swept up and then exploded with crushing force. Roundhouse kicks and spin kicks send the heartless flying. But they are no longer advancing.

The heartless are pulling back, pulling away from the upper terraces, scattering back down towards the leader ad it slowly.. with another creaking scream of metal, rises very slowly onto it's hands (feet) -- and begins to transmute again, the apeture of the cannon widens like an opening flower, a nasty bluish glow beginning in the background as a searing beam of darkness strikes out in an inescapable wave of force that POUNDS through the bottom terraces before shuddering up the chasm up into the upper reaches where it sends Heartless flying in an advance shockwave.

0Brace For Impact.

Jasmine Jasmine is buoyed by Aerith's strength, and some fraction of tension is released within her, her swirling motions mixed with sharp strikes coming ever more smoothly. "Thanks," she repeats -- but it doesn't feel like a repetition, her heartfelt gratitude and wonder as fresh and pure as ever. She never takes anything for granted, it seems, when it comes to others.

The Heartless rise with greater strength than ever, but a desert rose blooms most beautifully under adversity. Cartwheeling neatly, her puffy, iridescent blue bedlah pants briefly visible above her tattered brown burlap robes, she helps Tifa clear the worst of the area, until they move to withdraw... into something else.

Seeing the threat to the others, but especially to Avira, who's taken much of the worst of this battle, she implores, "Please, help Tifa, Aerith," and takes a running swan leap off of another ship's prow, to plunge downwards through the air. Tucking her head to her knees, she flips several times before impacting with the artificial mutate, feet-first, launching her higher and higher, above the terrible beam.

At which point gravity takes over, and she falls into it. The last anyone sees of her is her feet planting on the ground, hands fisted, forearms crossed before her. When the deadly wave has passed, and the light returned enough to chase away its darkness, she's revealed to be underneath it, sprawled bonelessly at the feet of the gigantic Heartless construct. Smoke rises from her clothing, but her expression is peaceful... even joyful. A smile of satisfaction, and of undying belief that having bought her friend some time, she'll end this.

There's no clearer expression of Jasmine's feelings -- that despite the many changes that have transpired since their last meeting, nothing has changed between them.
Aerith "That doesn't sound good, what are you gonna-"

And then Jasmine jumps.

Aerith has no time to look down after her as the cannon goes off... and flowergirl gets knocked down, quite hard. It takes her a bit to get back up, too, since she's disoriented in quite an awful way. Aerith gathers herself just enough to crawl over and look down, only to find that the one they were supposed to be fighting alongside is now unconcious.

Aerith wanted to cry. She wanted to scream. But she... they... had to keep going, to get her out of here. But first... maybe a rest was in order, just for a bit. Yes... a rest.
Will Sherman Will looks up...

It was too fast, he throws his hands infront of him, trying to brace for impact and let luck do the rest.

Luck looks at that attack, and looks to Will. "You're on your own <Goosehonk>."

Will then is looking up at the ceiling of Monstro, which is relaly just a lot of pitch blackness. His body is wickedly hurt, his clothing even more torn up, his hat looking worse for ware an his fingerless gloves fly off of his hands...landing into a vat of acid.

"Nooooo!" he shouts, losing them, and pulling himself to his feet, his right arm slightly out of aligntment, which takes a moment, and a shout of pain to fix. The arm moves, but only painfully. It's basicly useless, but he still has the right hand.

Once more, on his feet he flips, running right at the Heartless. This is all he has left, one arm hanging uselessly at his side as he charges. The other, however, burns red as he dredges power up. He flips aiming to tear through strings....

And pounds the hand down, repeatedly slamming it into the Heartless, aiming to obliterate the armor.
Tom Magnusson There is darkness at the heart of all things. There is a fear, ancient and powerful, that burns like a cinder within the very core of all things that live. To fear the darkness is natural- it is survival, it is what drove men to discover fire, to gather into cities, to build civilization. That fear is what makes humanity strike at itself, to murder and hate and kill.

Fear. Fear that is rooted in darkness. Fear that eats away at all the good things in a person's soul. Fear. Ancient and powerful. The most oldest of humanity's oldest emotion.

And then, there is Tom.

His eyes fly open as his muscles finally break from their mighty rigor. The palsy shatters, cast away like so many iron chains. The darkness comes. It flows like a river of eldritch night- it rushes forward in a tide of eternal, all consuming shadow. All light seems to be drawn into the cascade. It bulges, and then breaks, rushing forth, unstoppable.

Except, not.

It's as if there is a wall moving in the whale's belly. It rushes forward, throwing itself before the great cascade of darkness. Thick arms spread at either side, that wall stands before the one called Umi. And then, that wall has the gall to /grin/ at the source of humanity's most primal fear.

Grin, and roar.

And the tide breaks.

Tom takes a step forward, his body tearing the cascade apart, diverting the terrible fusillade to either side, forcing it overhead. He walks forward, his shirt torn to shreds. His hat flies off in the gale.

One hand glows. Tom takes in a breath. He releases it. Breath turns into strength, which seems to radiate out of every pore- like the corona of a star. Soon, he stands before the colossus. His fists tight. Tom's grin gleams through the night tide--

A thunderclaROARS through the cavernous stomach. Tom's fist slams forward. Space itself seems to collapse in a bubble of raw unreality, bending in on itself as it yields to the singular might of a man who knows the weight that rests upon his shoulders.

Tom yields not to the darkness, even as it sears his body and eats fruitlessly at his bones, for he carries upon his shoulders the light of a city.

Tom's fist FLASH, and then there is 0UNRELENTING FORCE.

In its wake, there is Tom Magnusson, shirtless save for a vest of heavy, reinforced ceramic, grinning. "That--" he rumbles, "Is for the first soul you bastards took in my city."
Avira As the Opposite Armor charges the laser cannon, Avira is not entirely unaware. She turns to face it, ready to weather its might. Only without warning, she finds herself slammed sideways and knocked from her platform into a small gully filled with whale slime. Struggling, she pulls herself up, peering over the platform to see Jasmine taking the attack meant for her...then falling. The princess lies there, an expression of joy on her face, crumpled on the ground.

Avira's eyes shade yellow. Her jaws part and a horrible roar of fury escapes her as she pulls herself up to her knees. A second later she is on her feet-or all fours, really, pouncing through the Heartless and slamming the Opposite Armor away with the force of her entire body, placing herself between it and Jasmine.

Ice magic follows, swirling all around her, intertwined with darkness as the intensity picks up. Flecks of snow appear in the air that rapidly turn into a raging blizzard that spreads out all around her. Another ominous howl escapes the mutate-a howl which is answered by several ones in kind moving throughout the ice. The shapes of wolves can be seen moving amongst the ice, built of just the same. They tear through the Heartless, leaving thick ice in their wake and bitter, bitter cold in the air. All the while, Avira stands in the center, black mist smoking off of her.

Without warning, she leaps through her own blizzard, unbothered by the snow, leading with the spine to impale any part she can reach of the Opposite Armor. She keeps driving forward, bursting into blue fire as she does so, burning it and every Heartless in her wake.

The magic ends with an explosion, Avira hovering in the air, howling mournfully.
Legion Legion shakes her head faintly, breathing out a ragged breath. That took a lot out of her. She nearly slips off Lavi but jolts herself awake to resteady her grip.

"Noooooo!!" Umi shouts as Will loses his gloves. How did that even happen?! "Nooooooooooooo!, The Network repeats for clarity!"

Unfortunately, having used significant firepower so far, they're starting to run out of juice! And Will seems pretty beat up on top of that! The worst!!!

And to make matters worse, the heartless are forming up, ready to blast the hell out of her. Whether or not she could have escaped is immaterial--Tom steps in the way and just punks it. She is just going to have to forgive Tom for putting them in this predicament in the first place.

mi follows along behind Tom Magnusson who, it seems, has lost his shirt. Umi pokes him in the skin a few times experimentally. She has never been to Manhattan, but if Tom is from there--they must all be really strong!

Raising her arm up, Umi unleashes a wave of electricity, trying to draw off its power--just in case this fails, better try to take away its energy before it can do serious damage to everybody. Again!!

Several flashing runes wash out the flood of information, their symbols dominating the HUD projected into Lavi's eyes. A final heavy strike sends the last of the Heartless stragglers to wherever it is the little monsters go when they die, the black puffs of smoke marking their deaths bisected by a lingering trail of magical blue light.

Her flank secured, the titan turns to see the ominous glow building from the transformed creature below. Immediately, her eyes narrow - she knows a beam cannon when she sees one. The frantic attempts by the Heartless swarm to retreat to safety are not a reassuring sight either. This is going to be bad.

For a moment, the demi-goddess ponders unleashing her might to stop this from happening but the backlash might very well be worse than what this demon has to offer them. Instead, she sheathes her weapons, the crystal blades snapping to her hips with magnetic clinks, and plucks Legion from her shoulder.

"Hold tight!" With only moments to spare, she whirls around, turning her broad back to the deadly beam of dark energy, wrapping herself about the girl like an armored cocoon.

Power washes over Lavi, raw and angry. Horrid webs of lightning ripple across the invisible wall of magical shielding that rises up to counter it, the two sources of energy heaving against each other in a deadly clash. Arcs of arcane energy erupt from the grinding friction, slashing at the whale's exposed innards for several seconds. But suddenly the light fades, its strength broken by the spirit of the man below.

Smoke rises from the giant's armored frame, wafting into the darkness of the massive cavern above. Slowly, she rises to her feet, keeping her hands upon Legion's shoulders as she glances over the girl to make sure she was properly protected. The armor screams at her silently, warning of unsafe residual power disrupting its output and fried circuit boards sacrificed to save their lives. Quietly, she reaches down and calls on a small reserve of her inner strength, renewing the machinery by sheer willpower. The soft grind of metal and gears touches her ears as proof of the deed.

"Well... that one was certainly pissed off...!"
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart's eyes widen as she sees the attack aimed toward them. Oh, this can't be good, that's for sure. A bit of luck aiding here, but she jumps at the last moment, the explosing rather than hurting her, propels her upward instead, out of range of most of the sharpnel. Being airborne is not exactly her best place, but she's at ease with it too.

Before she even has time to land down though, the other attacks obliterates what's left of the opposition, drawing a sigh of relief from her. But seeing Jasmin and Aerith falling down after the damage, she quickly scurries over to them "Hang on." She draws out some potions from her satchel, offering them to the two girls to bring them up at least. Now that the danger is gone. Or at least she hopes. But they are still inside a whale.
Stormfall The gleaming red armor starts to come apart again as Will slams into its' twisted strings, The repetitive clash reverberates like a dinner bell, and the heartless are still coming for aftermints.

And then a Tom and Avira Doublestrike Combo happens.

Ice Magic and Blazing Unreality to follow. Film at 11. And it's quite a show to behold. The Opposite Armor begins to slow as the ice magic freezes it's joints and slows it's movements. Explosions meet Explosions and Punch Justice stops the oncoming Hard Enrage of the monster they had been fighting, thus canceling the apocalypse.

This also interrupts the heartless that had been starting to draw /very/ too close to Jasmine in her moment of unconsciousness. A great light in a moment of weakness could have been in a very bad position had the greater Heartless now been thrown down and laid low.

Monstro lets out another earthquake like moan, water beginning to sluice from the other tunnels and from the upper terraces as the giant whale resents the presence of so many limit breaks and makes it's displeasure known by causing that deafening noise to rumble through the entire cavernous expanse, shaking everything as the heartless begin to retreat-- very quickly-- now that their leader has been vanquished. They skitter and disappear into the black patches which themselves wither and shrink away into nothing.
Aerith Aerith huffs as the Heartless attack breaks on what could be called a desperate offense, and she manages to peel herself off the ground just in time for Tifa to get one of those potions and drink it. "Get the rest of them to Jasmine. Get her on her feet." Aerith sighed and used the staff as leverage in order to get back on her feet. "I'll be okay... you know me."
Jasmine Jasmine's eyes flutter open as her skin is literally plunged into the icy torrent of Avira's fury -- and her heart figuratively so, by the same. "Avira -- don't," she whispers, though four syllables is all she can get out before her slender frame is wracked by a coughing fit. Afterwards, she continues, licking her lips to bring some wetness back into them, "Remember -- where the only real battle -- is fought."

Accepting Tifa's potions with a weary but thankful smile, she is shortly filled with reinvigorating energy. The sheer thoroughness of the thrashing she received at the hands of the Opposite Armor's deathbeam is not something that can be fixed by anything but time, but at the very least, she sits up and looks around. "They're gone, truly gone, for now," she murmurs. "I wish I knew how to make sure they'd /stay/ gone forever." Directing her gaze at each person in turn, she asks, "Is everyone all right?" Typical.
Legion Umi says, "Now it's itme to find that book!" And she darts off again---

--only for Tom to catch her with a fishing rod and pull her back, reeling her in like a wayward trout. Umi spins around in a circular manner.

Legion keeps a good grip on Lavi but once the battle is done, she hops off again, turns, and bows to her. "Thank you very much for your assistance." She says. Legion doesn't seem to have tkaen much pain, indeed Umi took brunt of it. She smiles faintly and glances over to Jasmine, nodding to her.

"We are within acceptable conditions. Still, while I do not suggest moving as hastily as Umi would like, The Network notes that we may not have much time left judging from the whale's displeasure."

They're both a bit antsy to help Will out.
Tom Magnusson Shadow's grip on the leviathan breaks as the beast dissolves around the end of Tom's fist. Thick, gloopy darkness bubbles and boils away as he withdraws his hand. First order of business, he rushes over and quite unceremoniously swings his fishing-crane, snagging a wayward Umi. Then he meanders over to gently pop Will's arm back into place.

The fine details of which occur over the radio channel, of course.

But then, there is soon little time to rest. "Hey, everyone," Tom thunders, "We need to get moving! This place is gonna be filling up real fast, and I'd rather not drown in the belly of a whale. Let me tell you, it's mighty inhospitable of him to kick us out without what we came for, but I don't think the old beast's working on our timetable, here."

"Will," Tom glances at the boy, "See if you can't see the book. If we can't get to it quick, I'll try to angle it. If that doesn't work, we come back later- somehow- and get outta dodge."

There is a song in Tom's head at the moment. It sounds positively anxious.
Will Sherman Will walks over to Tom.

A few seconds later, Will screams in pain.

The arm dislocated is set back into place. It moves, but not without some pain. Will shakes the tears out of his eyes, and looks around.

"We need to find th..." he looks.

A thread, he runs to the small tunnel filled with sludge that the Armor came out of. It isn't very long, but as he moves, he finds a skelleton, this one holding a book. The thread connecting to said book.

"Oh god." he says, looking at the bottom.

Property of M.Mim.



He is already moving behind the group back towards...their ship?
Avira Avira hovers in the air for a few moments longer before dipping down back to the ground, sheathing the Spine in one smooth motion. She lands on the springing floor close to the fallen Princess and folds her wings close to her body. "Somebody heal her." She murmurs, the sound of pain in Avira's voice. The darkness was moving again, becoming almost unbarable. Mentally, she steels herself, telling herself that they had the cure and she had Angantyr's pearl. Just hold on a little longer.

"I'm trying." She murmurs to Jasmine, then freezes as the whale makes his anger known.

Stooping down, Avira scoops up Jasmine into her arms. Right away, the princess will notice that as a mutate, Avira has a bit more muscle than her human form. "I get the feeling that we really oughta get out of this place. Very soon."
Aerith Well it was definitely time to get moving, wasn't it!

Now ready to get back into the swing of things, Aerith slid down to the lower levels and aided with finding... whatever this thing was they were here to get. More eyes meant more ground covered. Hopefully they'd find it before they drowned... or something worse. Sadly that something worse came in the form of... the book being carried off by Will. "I have no idea what he's so scared of... but I think that's our cue." Aerith bolted after him as fast as she could move in her current state.
Tom Magnusson "Oh, good. That was fast--" Also fast, the rising water levels. Fortunately, Will seems to know where he's going. "Come on!" Tom yells, "Follow the kid or follow the water! Either one'll hopefully go somewhere that isn't 'in here!'"
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart moves over to Aerith, offering her a shoulder if only to support her friend a bit, since she got hurt more than she did "I hope someone thought of the way out, or we'll just rot with whatever treasure we might find in here." She sighs a bit, looking around as she follows the rest of the ground "You have any idea where we're going now?"
Legion Umi departs with Will, and Legion on her own.

Sadly it seems they did not make the vast fortune they were hoping for. But at least they still have 49 munny from this adventure. Surely getting covered in slime, being nearly killed, and fighting off a horde of heartless is made worth it by that.
Lavi With a grin, Lavi gives the girl a hearty pat on the back that probably is less pleasant than she intended it to be, giant metal hands and all. But she's a big girl, she can take it. "Excellent!"

The knight turns her head to peer down at the group below, noting the deafening bellows and coming to the same conclusion that Tom has. Best time to be going now, book or no. However, even as she thinks it Will comes barreling out with just the thing in question under his arm, running like a bat out of Hell.

"Looks like we've overstayed our welcome. Let's go!"

Lavi unceremoniously scoops up Legion again as the girl turns to leave, drawing one of her blades with the other hand and igniting it for the lightsource as the group turns and retreats to their boat. Without the threat of Heartless lashing out at them from the dark, she moves much quicker this time, leaping from island to island with great bounds and lighting the way.
Stormfall Here is something.


A third moan rocks the enclosure, water spewing down the terraces as the floor-- starts to tilt dangerously towards not being the walls, and the walls start looking at the ceiling position with envy. The heroic efforts of Tom and Lavi were not enough to save the boat of Faris the pirate but it is in much fairer condition than many of the twisted wrecks that now populate the gullet of the monster.

It lays in a slimy pool, mast splintered and sails sagging listlessly. It may not actually stay there with the shifting walls. In fact, it may start an inexorable slide towards somewhere while the music playing in the background gets considerably more intense as they reach the beginning of their journey into the Center of a Dungeon Whale-- but where to go from here?
Deidra Deidra doesn't even notices the munny if it drawn to her great, she's got other things to worry about and won't cry about not having it if she's got her life. then comes the pain so much pain. Monstro is not happy, there are more creatures coming over and well pain is to be had, There's a good deal of pain bu it's not from the heartless she was fighting. It was something worse the big one just opened fgire and she's barely even on her feet at this point she's burned, she's hurt and otherwise a mess. She's alive thankfully but she looks like hell. She consumes one of her last potions, and pulls her self off the ground shaking her head a little bit... "Everyone alive...?"
Jasmine Jasmine's lack of surprise at Avira's 'newfound' strength is telling; she measures strength on another metric, and no matter what she looks like on the outside, she's never been found wanting in that area. Leaning into the woman's chest, she wraps her arms around her neck, both to stabilize herself and to embrace her friend gently but fiercely. "I know you are," she murmurs, into her shoulder. "I know."

Avira has a cure, a pearl, and now something else as well -- what passes between them is invisible, intangible, but no less real, as Light calls to Light, soothing even as it stokes her inner flame to blinding intensity, to ward off the Darkness with what was there all along: the best of Avira's heart. Never underestimate the power of affection, of compassion, or of a hug from one of the seven pillars of the universe.

Whether or not the princess knows what she's done is an open question, but her smile is dazzling all the same. "Everything is going to be all right," she whispers with absolute conviction. "It's all right now, even. As long as... well, you know the rest."

Fresh out of energy, her eyelids sink shut again, as she falls asleep in Avira's arms, barrel roll or not.
Tom Magnusson There is only one place to go when you're in the belly of a whale. Well, three places. Two places are bad news. One place isn't nearly so bad. Tom really, really hopes they're going /there./

But then the world turns topsy-turvy. A strong arm goes to seize Will by his waist, clutching the injured boy to his side. Tom digs his fingers into the ship's hull, splintering the wood as he finds his grip. Falcon might be broken, it might be battered, but it's intact, and it's solid.

"Hold on tight," Tom roars- to the others as much as to Will. "If this is going the way it always goes in the movie, we're going to be fired into the sky at speeds that'll make most of you feel /real/ uncomfortable. But, as they say--"

"Onwards!" Tom grins, "AND UPWARDS!"
Aerith There's no doubt that this will only end one way, but Aerith doesn't mind at all. They're all... mostly alive... and that's what counts. She boards the ship, braces herself for their exit, and smiles at Tifa. "We made it again... somehow..." How many times now had they nearly escaped the void? Too many? Too little? Never mind, they'd escaped again. Aerith reminded herself to have a chat with Jasmine about... well, everything and nothing. She'd heard a lot, and seen much right now, but that wasn't enough.

How fortunate for this to be on her mind now, when everything was crashing down around them. Barely surviving a fight put a spin on things, no?
Avira Even now, Avira is moving with the others, gesturing with her head for them to follow. Her steps are swift as she pursues Tom and Will, easily able to carry Jasmine along in the process. Though she does look ahead, Jasmine's words are certainly heard.

Those words are felt too. The pain fades quickly, the parasitic darkness inside of her no longer rebelling as her own light intensifies. A contented sigh escapes from the jaws of the mutate as she feels a sense of peace and will that she hadn't felt after a fight since being changed.

Her head leans down and nuzzles Jasmine's cheek, an action that is only partially driven by instinct. This happens just as the princess fades off to sleep.

Avira lands upon the remains of Faris's ship and looks a little guilty. "...hope this doesn't mean I owe Faris a boat..." she mutters, not that it was really Faris's boat to begin with. Her toe-claws dig into the wood of the ship and her tail seeks something to hold onto. "Alright Tom, let's do this."
Tom Magnusson "Just be sure to get ready to grab some of us when and if it launches us skyward," Tom grins in Avira's general direction as his legs go to brace against what remains of the ship's mast. "We're sure gonna have one whale of a tale to tell when we get home, won't we?"
Will Sherman Will is grabbed, he groans, holding onto the book.

He doesn't get much a choice now, as he braces for dear life.
Deidra Deidra braces her self as well she realsies at least she can fly and maybe catch one or two people. She however is hoping this all was worth it, for this was an inwsane drink worthy day. Drinking to prehaps try to forget some of it.
Tifa Lockhart Tifa Lockhart holds on for dear life with Aerith as well. Its going to be a rough ride from here on >_<
Stormfall Pepper Power.

The Power of Explosives. The Power of Music.

The Power of one man. One Fishing Crane and a Boat.

All these things are part of the Legend of the Roaming Whale that now creeps across the rumor channels. The Great Whale Monstro picks up a new Enmity for a new foe (I.E The Tom) and gives him the most EVIL of EYES. The shattered boat is little more than a hulking wreck quickly taking on far too much water and it is still quite some time to Junon Port Town.

When the group arrives there-- perhaps there was new adventure waiting for them on the shore. Perhaps Ultros returned for a second performance. Perhaps the Narrator is drugged on Cough Syrup -- The World shall never know. But the Legend Will Live on.

Ocean Adventure: Complete.

This scene contained 155 poses. The players who were present were: Deidra, Will Sherman, Tifa Lockhart, Jasmine, Faris Scherwiz, Avira, Stormfall (Aka: Ultros), Aerith, Tom Magnusson, Lavi, Legion