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No title.
(2013-03-26 - 2013-06-17)
No description.
Leida The early afternoon is a busy time for the city of Manhattan. The restoration of the world from the darkness has left much in need of repairs and the damage of the final battles that led to its downfall can still be seen here and there. However, the industrial power of the modern world is impressive when it wants to be and the twisted masses of ruined cars and shattered buildings have already been cleared off the streets allowing for an easy flow of traffic.

The portal connecting this hub of activity to the rest of the multiverse bends and shifts as a new body passes through it. Leida stepped tenatively onto the paved sidewalk, glancing around to see if anyone noticed her arrival. She earned a few sidelong glances but her relatively normal attire allows her to blend in quickly.

The lack of screams or stares allowed her to believe that the charm Seith had provided was working as intended. Her horns and corrupted eyes still existed and functioned as always but to everyone else they were invisible. Instead the soft ambers of her old pupils peered out from a field of white as she slipped into the city proper.

To one from a world such as her own, the towering contructs of metal and glass were absolutely break-taking and she stared openly, her mouth agape at what would ostensibly be her own world's distant future. The sheer number of people wandering about baffled her as well. None of them stopped to greet each other or even offer passing curtesies and the thought of living in a place so huge that she didn't know the faces of every person living there is foreign and frightening.

Granted there were a few larger cities back home. The capitol was a sizable place and some of the more prosperous ports were said to be quite sizable but she had never actually visited any of them. Despite having been in Manhattan once before during her darkest hours, she remembered very little about it and each sight was new and wonderous. But she didn't have time to gawk, the charm only lasted six hours and she was determined to see her friends again before the lonliness of the desert withered her even more than the heat.

Four hours later...

Leida sits on a bench in the center of a massive grove of trees. Her shoulders are slumped and she hunches foward, hands resting in her lap as the fingers twirl amonst each other in idle motion. This place is even larger than she could have dreamed. Every street looked the same as the last with only bizarre unfamiliar signs and landmarks to set them apart. She was hoping that something of her previous trip would have risen to the surface, some faint memory to guide her to her destination but no such aid was forthcoming from the slumbering presence inside.

After several hours of pointless wandering she had tried to ask for aid but even with explicit directions she has had no better luck. Unfamiliar names and baffling slang were used freely and the presence of those abominable motor vehicles were everywhere, forcing her to move in the middle of crowds as they flocked like fish across the deadly thoroughfares. Eventually she had just given up. The girl sits quitely staring at her hands, the lingering traces of tears still visible on her cheeks. Her gift was going to be wasted completely. Even worse, she has no idea how to get back the way she came. What would the people of this world do to her when they found out what she really was?

Emi Dennou is wandering around the city again, still getting to know the locale herself. Unlike Leida, she is actually quite used to big cities and doesn't really have any issue getting around. She does end up in the park, but it's a bit more intentional on her part. She is humming along to herself just to keep her mind focused on something, but ironically she practically passes by Leida without immediately recognizing her without the HORRIBLE MONSTROUS APPEARANCe that actually is kind of adorable honestly she thinks Leida is exaggerating that whole thing at best.

She looks back over to Leida after what she saw catches back up to her.

"Leida-Chan." She says. "What's the matter, The Network inquires as this one approaches." Emi does just that, turning back to head her way.
Leida Leida's head lifts swiftly at the familiar voice, staring wide-eyed as if unable to believe what she's seeing is true. Even if it's a hallucination, however, she's past caring. The girl lurches off the bench, practically throwing herself onto her friend and wraps her up in a tight hug.

"Emi-chan! How did... why are...?" She shakes her head and buries her face in Emi's shoulder, tears of joy coming forth freely to replace the ones of despair. "It does not matter. I am so very happy to see you!"

While it may be true that people from the more modern worlds of action movies and comic books might not think something as simple as horns or funny colored eyes to be that big of a deal, the medieval worlds where monsters and demons are things of reality takes such signs of corruption quite seriously. In any case, Leida is clearly upset about them.

Being able to walk around in the open without being stared at has been a joy but until this moment that happiness has been diluted by her frustration at being unable to find her way. It all comes rushing back in an instant and even the princess' deep abiding disdain for public affection is cast aside as she hugs the other girl for several long seconds and doesn't seem to be planning to let go any time soon on her own.
Emi Dennou Emi is seized up in a HUG. She blinks twice and then reaches around with one hand to pat Leida on the back a few times. Maybe four times? Five? Around that number. Of course the hug is stilll happening at that point so she adds, "What's the matter, Leida-Chan?" She pats twice more after asking that. "It will be 'okay', The Network hereby refers to 'okay' as at minimum a condition above mediocre for this particular instance of condition." She has undoubtedl noticed the missing horns and whatnot but intends to give Leida a chance to explain herself first.
Leida The hug continues for a good dozen seconds or so while Leida sniffles uncontrollably into her shoulder. The gentle patting seems to unleash a torrent of emotion she's been trying to bottle up for several days now and even the Network's strangely specific manner of speech doesn't throw her off.

"I-I wanted to come and see y-you... and Imi-chan and Ami-chan... and... and all of you..." She leans back after a final squeeze and wipes at her face with the back of a hand. "But... I was afraid that... that I should not come here. After what I did... I do not think I have the right to come to this place..."

Leida shakes her head again and finally steps away, turning to look up at the towering buildings in the sky, their shining glass windows visible over the trees. "But... I was all alone... so I... I decided to come anyways. This place is so... so amazing but, oh, it is so big... I wandered so far and did not know where to turn and there were so many of those terrible machines and I only have a few hours. I was afraid I would lost here forever..."
Emi Dennou What she did? Emi hasn't really thought about that in relation to Manhattan coming back. And it being gone. For a good long time. But it seriously seems to bother Leida, so Emi tries to wrap her head around it.

"Terrible machines?" Emi asks. "Do you mean vending machines? The Network also considered cars, planes, and motorcycles."

Emi tilts her head. "A few hours of what? The Network further inquires if this has anything to do with your absent demonic (but weirdly adorable) features though this one further postulates such features are not inherently 'cuteified' but for their presence on you which lends a certain quality to them as part of the whole."

She starts to think she ha gotten off track and adds, "Unlikely, the streets are designed to be easy to follow if perhaps with some getting used to. Did you require assistance or was this simply a social call?, The Network inquires."
Leida "T-the automobiles, ofcourse!" She says it like the answer was obvious. "So large and noisy and dangerous! Though these seem like they stay on the ground more often than I remember..."

Leida worries her fingers together for a moment but her hands go to her cheeks and she blushes when Emi speculates the correlation between the cuteness of her demonic features and her ownership of them. "W-wh... you think those awful things are... adorable? ...because of me?" She doesn't quite know how to respond to that. Rendering her speechless through their strange antics seems to be a shared quality among the Dennou sisters; be it in the form of overly dramatic displays of affection, confusing or embarrassing words, or a pulling her into bizarre impromptu dances, they all tend to leave her in a whirl.

After a few moments pondering how exactly turning into a terrible demon can be considered adorable, Leida lowers her hands and looks back at Emi with a faint smile. "W-well... I just wanted to see you all again. And... as you can see, I... came into possession of a way to hide my... um... undesirable features." She sighs, letting her eyes slide shut. "But the item only works for six hours and I am unsure when I will be able to acquire another."
Emi Dennou The Network thinks back to her own home world and Endgame, the organization she used to belong to before the fall of that world.

"I suppose our thought processes aren't normative for most worlds. However, The Network notes that if your concern is unsettled reactions to your appearance, you could likely claim a combination of contacts and cosplay to pass through untroubled in this world. Indeed, something like that would likely be the initial reaction, not requiring a 'story' at all. We suppose you could get strange looks all the same since going 'in cosplay' is not typically considered normative behavior either."

"In a sense perhaps though, these transformations are something of a relief to The Network." She taps lightly at her cheek, considering. "Since in spite of such transformations, your own nature seems to be unchanged. To look at it like that, it is something of a relief, isn't it?, The Network hypothesizes recklessly."

She smiles faintly, if suddenly. "Well this one is not all of us, but would be happy to keep you company and escort you where you require to go."
Leida Leida gives Emi a vacant stare as she rattles of a list of reasons why people would not be particularly put off by her normal appearance. "Con... tacts? Cosplay? Emi-chan... I... I have no idea what you are referring to. Are... are people inclined to pretending to be demons in this world?"

She looks downcast at Emi's other attempt to comfort her in light of the physical changes twisting her body. The princess has not had much time to spend with her friends of late so they do not know of the personality shifts that have been taking place as well, nor her surrender to the dark power growing inside. "Oh... y-yes... I suppose that is... comforting."

She offers another attempt at a smile to her friend. "I would like that very much, Emi-chan. Um... if it not too much trouble... could we find a tavern or tea house? In my haste, I failed to properly prepare and have no food." Her stomach rumbles as if voicing its desire in addition to her request and she blushes fiercely, looking mortified at her body's lack of tact.
Emi Dennou If Leida is behaving any differently, The Network is oblivious. "You know of acting, correct? Where people dress up in costumes? That is not uncommon behavior in this world. Indeed, there are often get-to-gethers where many people would dress up in ways you might found outlandish..."

Emi trails off after a moment. "...We could go to either. There are no shortage of consumption options in this city."

She cups her chin for a moment before looking over to Leida.

"This one has no desire to force you, but is something going on?"
Leida Leida cringes guiltily at the question and stares at the pavement near her feet for a few moments. Apparently whatever personailty changes she's gone through they haven't gifted her with a better poker face. "I... ah..."

Her head lifts and she looks around at the pretty scenery: the verdant park with its lush green trees and well-kept grass, the towering buildings of glass and stone, even the cars zipping by on the street in the distance. The Shadow Lords destroyed all of this once before but by staying silent she could preserve this beauty. She wouldn't be the cause of that loss again.

"No... no it is nothing, Emi-chan..." She doesn't sound very sincere or happy about the words but they are spoken nonetheless. "I am just tired. The desert heat is not a good environment for someone as frail as me."
Emi Dennou Emi is quiet for several moments after Leida and then says, "Liar, The Network accuses bluntly." She looks back to Leida and smiles at her faintly. "But that's alright. Let's have a nice drink. This one will lead you there."

She starts a-walkin'. Perhaps it would have been more 'normal' to not actually point out that she saw through that, or maybe just more dramatic, but she is totally okay with being blunt. Part of what she is, really.
Leida Emi might as well have slapped her in the face. Leida takes a step back with a look of shock on her face at the blunt statement. Her culture was not one for straightforward answers or casual disregard for another's discomfort. Everything was subtle and implied. Again, the princess has nothing to say.

She follows behind Emi after a short pause, unsure if the invitation was real or if she should even accept it at this point. But without someone who knows their way around, she's practically doomed to be lost for days in this metropolitan maze, so Leida obediently shuffles along, her head hung in chastised silence.
Emi Dennou The Network is pretty horrible at deceit.

"This may be a strange question." Emi continues. "But The Network wonders--just what do you think of us? We understand we are rather strange and, perhaps, a bit difficult to anticipate. Of course, we feel we know Leida-Chan rather well at this point...and of course we are friends, but besides that--how do you see us? The Network is fundamentally inquiring for feedback."

She continues to walk. Emi does not offer to carry Leida but well it's a pretty public area at the moment. "Further." She adds. "Do you have a kerchief?"
Leida Leida glances up as the girl ahead of her begins to talk, hoping for some chance to redeem herself through conversation. The question is not one that she expects but it is one that she can atleast answer honestly and she is quick to do so with a smile.

"Oh... well, that is a complicated question... Emi-chan. Umm..." The flush of red that fills her cheeks is a little too prominent for someone thinking completely innocent thoughts. She swallows hard, not sure if now is the best time or place to be talking about her real feelings. "I... ah... I..."

She stops suddenly, hands balling up into fists to keep the nervous shake from being too visible. Her shoulders hunch up and she stares at the ground, trying to summon up the courage. Finally, it simply pops out.

"I really like you!" Her hands fly to her mouth, the girl immediately embarrassed by her outburst. "Ah...! W-what I mean... to say... that is... um..." Her index fingers extend and she taps the tips together, hiding her face behind them while glancing up at the other girl shyly.
Emi Dennou Emi seems confused. Even amongst Dennous she's not exactly the best at reading these sorts of emotions. Rather, in this cirumstance, she's rather bad at it. Ultimately, while it's nice to hear that someone 'really likes you'--it is definitely not really something that required a 'confession'--they knew Leida liked them! And that they liked Leida!

She rubs at her forehead, wondering if she missed something here. Ultimately Leida pulls back a bit and starts stumbling over her words again.

"Ah--this one apologizes." Emi says. "But The Network has a feeling there is some aspect of this dialogue that they are...not seeing? Is there something else you are trying to say?"

Emi stops walking to look at Leida. You can practically see the question marks in her eyes.

Leida Emi's, and therefore the Network's, lack of understanding only makes the situation all the more awkward for the poor princess. Her shoulders slump in exhasperation as if unable to comprehend how they could misunderstand her intentions, especially after claiming they knew her so well!

Leida straightens up and takes a deep breath, digging up some of that newfound courage that the darkness has afforded her but she is unable to push the wave of nauseating nervousness that washes over her away. What if they don't feel the same way? What if they laugh at her for being ridiculous and stupid?

She swallows again. Only one way to find out. Pulling herself up into a posture that is as dignified as she can manage, Leida walks over to the other girl and bows before her.

"Emi-chan... you and your sisters mean more to me than anything else in all of the worlds. When I awoke here, even though Reize-san and his clan were willing to take me in, I was still alone and frightened. You were the first ones to approach me without fear or contempt and even though I have made poor choices in the past and in the present, you have always been willing to stand with me and help me when I need it most."

She stands up and gives her a warm smile, reaching out tenatively to place a hand on Emi's cheek. "I treasure your friendship but more than that... I... love you. All of you."
Emi Dennou Emi rubs the back of her neck, before twisting her hand back to tug at her left pigtail. Realization gradually dawns on her. Okay, yes, maybe they should have realized what was going on earlier--but in truth this may have been a matter of underestimating themselves rather than a lack of understanding of Leida. Every eye has some level of subjectivity in their gaze.

"Do you mean..." Emi trails off, and then laughs lightly to herself. "That is quite the compliment, Leida-Chan." She stuffs her hands into her pockets. She isn't sure how to respond. "Nobody has ever claimed to like us in such a way before." She smiles again. "Thank you for your kind words."

Well at the very least she's not calling Leida stupid. She does seem a bit embarrassed, but well--as she claims she doesn't usually get people telling her that. "At the very least...all of us. We're all one, after all. One for all...all for one, that sort of thing, The Network expresses. Perhaps. Yes. We are grateful."
Leida Leida's eyes quest over the other girl's face, watching closely her reaction to this bold confession. Her body tenses up at the first hints of laughter but she relaxes a moment later upon realizing it was not aimed at her.

The princess exhales the breath she didn't notice she was holding until now. Grateful is a start, atleast. They didn't tell her she was foolish or dismiss her outright and that alone is enough to make her feel giddy with the possibility. She smiles in return and withdraws her hand, taking a step back.

"I meant every word," Leida says. Her hand disappears into the small satchel belted at her waist and she withdraws a handful of various pieces of cloth. Each of them is a different color and decorated with various designs that were obviously created by hand. She picks one of them out of the bunch, light green the same as Emi's hair. On it is a painted illustration of various hats as well as pictographic Japanese kanji.

"This is an omamori. It is a talisman to ward off evil and bring good fortune. I have written your name on it." She holds the item out for Emi to inspect or take at her leisure. "There is one for each of you," she adds. "I know it is not much to offer considering all that you have given me, but... please... take it."
Emi Dennou Emi has thought of love, but honestly it felt like an alien possibility not that someone would find them 'cute' or 'adorable' or even 'pretty' or even 'sexy' one day, no sir, it's more that she never really felt anybody would be comfortable with loving a Hive Mind. It IS pretty weird. But then again, Leida is someone who did offer to join in if it was possible, though she's sort of glad she couldn't--they just sort of prefer Leida being Leida!

Emi's eyes widen again upon seeing the gift. "Leida-Chan...." She frowns after a moment. "Hm. WEre you... planning on saying something akin to this before?"

She looks at the items rather than taking them just yet. She doesn't want to be rude by grabbing too quickly. It's a quiet moment here, after all, even if she is pretty possessive at times.

When it's properly offered, she'll take ONE of the items. "Thank you." She says, perhaps presuming that she intends to hand the rest off individually.
Leida Leida smiles sheepishly but nods in reply to the question. "That... that is why I came to visit all of you. I wanted to let you know how I feel before..." She trails off and a downcast look crosses her features for a moment but she quickly recovers. "Well... I wanted to tell you, that is all that is important," she adds softly.

She gives a quick bow in response to the thanks. The other charms are placed back in her satchel but glimpses of stylized flowers and animals and bullets are visible on their surfaces for a few moments as she tucks them away, each one tailored to suit the interests she has discovered for the various Dennous.
Emi Dennou Emi starts fussing with the charm, she is unsure how to properly equip it. "You know us fairly well," Emi admits. The Network would honestly be preferred to be viewed absent of gender as of late, but of course that is difficult when your behavior is pretty feminine, at least in a lot of her selves.

"You don't need to say," Emi repeats. "If you need help, we will help you, whenever you are ready for it and, The Network admits, whether you want it or not."
Leida The charm is a simple cloth bag in the shape of a rectangle. From the feel of it there are several long flat pieces of wood inside arranged vertically. Their surfaces are polished and carved with something, perhaps words or symbols, which can be felt through the thin fabric. A simple red string is woven through the top of the talisman which is pulled tightly, cinching it shut so the contents will not fall out as well as providing a loop to fasten the charm to something. While warriors of old often simply carried them in their clothes or wore them as necklaces, a more modern choice might be a key ring or cellphone.

Leida lowers her gaze, feeling guilty about not being able to tell the ones she cares for about all of her problems. She wants to; she wants desperately to explain what she did and why but in doing so she could very well condemn and entire world for the second time. She isn't quite prepared to live with that.

"I am sorry, Emi-chan..." Leida whispers. "Please... do not do anything foolish on my behalf. It would ruin me to know that I was the cause of any harm that came to you."
Emi Dennou Emi wears it as a necklace for the moment. The phone is not on her. Her reasoning of Leida's reason to not spill her guts may be entirely off base and incorrect--forever!

"We will do foolish things for you, if we like, though we would prefer to do clever things for you." Emi counters quickly, as if the statement was prepared.
Leida Leida looks surprised by the quick retort but her youthful features swiftly shift into a smile and she giggles a bit, covering her mouth demurely with one hand. "Yes... you are all quite clever at that. Very well. I will be counting on you."

Her stomach rumbles again, ruining the moment. Leida glances away and coughs coyly. "Erm... perhaps we should... not tarry long. The only rescuing I require at this moment is from my own hunger."
Emi Dennou Emi smiles back. "Of course. This one will treat you, then."

And so...she tally forths once more! Pip pip!

This scene contained 26 poses. The players who were present were: Leida, Emi Dennou