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Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

Loosening her scarf as she walks over to look into the crypt, she looks up. "There's... an exit, right? It's not just... you know... a crypt?", she adds, poking her fingers together. "I was just hoping for a back door.", she says, looking over to Pavel.

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Atlatl
Jan 2, 2008

Art thou doubting
your best bro?


Pavel
Traits:
Fearless | Resilient | Veteran | Crass

Pavel raises a finger, opens his mouth, and uses every last ounce of restraint remaining to stop himself from commenting. "Phrasing, Lady Colt."

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

Ema stares back at Pavel for a long moment. "Um." She tilts her head. "If you say so?" If there's a thing to get, she's clearly not getting it.

K Prime
Nov 4, 2009



Exu Liao

"Exit or not, it's better to look than stay and stare at false saviors," says Exu. "Let us go."

grassy gnoll
Aug 27, 2006

The pawsting business is tough work.

Gun Saliva

Beneath the City

The crypt is indeed a place to store the decomposed dead for quite a while. This will be the penultimate resting place for the insufficiently important or wealthy, before their bones are taken for processing. The lighting is appropriately subdued, the floors clean, and the air cool and pure. The church technicians have done something to the stone down here so that sound is deadened, to preserve the quiet dignity of those passed.

You nearly miss it - the faint breeze wafting from the cracked lid of a sarcophagus is the only thing that tips you off. Beneath the lid, a rough-hewn tunnel twists deeper into the guts of the city. Someone's dug up into the cathedral's lower levels.

This leg of your journey is not as pleasant as the part with all the dead people. This tunnel stinks, the only light comes from your personal electronics, and it's wet and hot down here. You nearly slip and fall several times on the slick rock beneath your feet. Abruptly, the narrow passage deposits you into a great vault, one of the cisterns beneath the city. The openness is physically startling, after your crawl through the depths. Water trickles but does not roar into the great artificial lake before you.

Gradually, you become aware of the glittering dots in the silky blackness - dozens of eyes, glittering at you from the dark.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

There's a very faint humming sound from Ema's suit as she walks, tugging at her collar slightly. "Maybe angry crowds aren't so bad-", she finally admits, before falling silent as they come to the larger room.

After a moment, she pulls her goggles down, tapping them as she starts getting the low-light settings up.... and takes a step back.

grassy gnoll
Aug 27, 2006

The pawsting business is tough work.

Gun Saliva

Beneath the Cathedral

Ema, and anyone else with the natural or technological means, can resolve the constellation before you into a sad, shambling tableau. Clustered around this source of grey water are the altered, the crippled, and the truly destitute. Bestial grafts caress mechanical augmentations, and inhuman hands clutch at ragged skirts.

A military mind would notice these people are wary of you, and while they are not armed and advancing on you, the larger members of this troupe have arranged themselves between you, the interlopers, and their brethren in this underground cathedral. Their encampment clutches the edge of the cistern, small shacks abutting drain sluices and dangling over the edge to the water far below.

The more scientifically-inclined would make note of the reflectivity of the denizens' eyes. Not all of the dwellers here display mutations or gene fixes that would create eyes that shine in the dark, yet it seems to be overwhelmingly common among their number. Moreover, among the gathering crowd of beast-people, cyborgs and like are children. These people have been down here a long time. But how do they live?

Is this lost colony the thing the Bishop cautioned you about?

Atlatl
Jan 2, 2008

Art thou doubting
your best bro?


Pavel
Traits:
Fearless | Resilient | Veteran | Crass

Pavel takes the lead, glancing back at his companions as they arrive at the colony. His own eyes reflect what little light remains in the underground. Between the people and the smell, Pavel can't help but be reminded of his childhood slum. He briefly wonders what it would be like these days. The guard stuffs his hands in his pockets and cautiously strolls towards the largest beast-person in front.

"Hey, what's up?" His manner is perhaps overly comfortable, but perhaps it would be less offensive than the opposite. "Sorry, don't mean to bother you. We ran into some trouble and wound up getting lost down here. You wouldn't happen to know the way out, would you?"

grassy gnoll
Aug 27, 2006

The pawsting business is tough work.

Gun Saliva

Beneath the Cathedral

Pavel saunters up to what appears to be a living wall onto which someone's grafted leonine and bullish parts and metal components, then done some masonry work to shape it into the approximate standard biped configuration. They - their preferred identity being "large" without much else to go on - speak in a voice so deep as to nearly be subsonic; the effect is slightly disorienting for someone with hearing as sensitive as the genefixed guardsman.

"Yes," offers the wall, declining to elaborate further. The other inhabitants have been fairly quiet up until now, and they seemed to accept Pavel's approach without much remark, but inquiring about egress has set them abuzz.

"Please, pardon me," says another voice. This one is flat and atonal, devoid of any markers beyond intensity and volume. It issues from a slight figure working its way along the perimeter of Pavel's new friend. This new presence is odd, even given its company: a shabby cloak, scarf and goggles obscure its features, its voice issues from a box on its belt, it appears to be constructed entirely like a baseline human, as thin and light as its companion is massive, and oddest of all, beneath that cloak is the black and silver bodysuit of the noblesse ancienne.

The person in black puts a consoling hand against the giant's arm, and bows politely to you. "Excuse me, but I understand this may be an unfamiliar circumstance for you all. I trust you must all be friends of our benefactor upstairs, else you would not be here. While His Excellency is a superlative judge of character, I am afraid that we cannot disclose the exits as a matter of course. It is crucially important that our location not be known to the world above, you understand. But please, do settle in, our community is most accommodating. Tell us about yourselves."

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

"But- But-", Ema manages, stunned. Sure, finding out things are bad on the surface was another thing, but this was a whole other scale of misery. She sits down on the edge of the passageway, and puts her hands on her head for a moment. Then, she looks up with a, "What- how- why would-" She looks up to the others as if they might have a clue. Then, she just seems to deflate a bit, looking down.

thatbastardken
Apr 23, 2010

Toot Toot I'm A Boot


Adolphus
Traits: Loyal, Brave, Leader, Veteran, Patriot

Having been uncharacteristically quiet the General speaks up again.

"Don't be alarmed, Miss Colt. Just tell them who you are and what we need. Follow my lead"

Who in the dark
Must scramble for an exit
Flee the guard and ancients
Find his king as well
And who in old age
Must ride a mech again
To show these children how to fight?

The general, the general...

K Prime
Nov 4, 2009



Exu Liao

"I did not listen to your kind above," says Exu, staring at the Ancient. "I will not do so here either. We must away..." she looks around at the pale unfortunates here. Pale as death. "...but I suppose an hour is not something we would miss at this point. I am but a musician. Would you like a song, perhaps?"

Atlatl
Jan 2, 2008

Art thou doubting
your best bro?


Pavel
Traits:
Fearless | Resilient | Veteran | Crass

Pavel grabs Miss Colt by the back of her collar and hauls her to her feet, turning her to face the crowd.

Who cares why? They still got their lives and their dignity.
Eyes up, introduce yourself, spit a few lines with me.


He steps towards the crowd.

Sorry for the intrusion and our rudeness,
my name's Pavel, lowly soldier for a marquess.
But I'm not here on her business today, you see,
we're here because the people up top wanna be free
now the bishop's trying to help us sorry lot
from getting rounded up in front the church and getting shot.


A sidelong glance to the general.

We're not here to conscript you...

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

Pulled up, Ema squints, and then shakes her head, pulling away.

I've gone through such hardship and looked to the stars
I'd fought through the breach and traveled so far
I thought we were the only ones cast away
And everywhere I go things are going astray
They told me "just act simply, with honor and grace"
But how I can try when it seems so defaced-


She looks to the others who escaped the mob.

Tell me, what does you heart tell you?...

Tricky
Jun 12, 2007

after a great meal i like to lie on the ground and feel like garbage



Lilliana Sin
Traits:
Insightful | Genuine | Leader | Hot-Blooded

A shower of sparks light up in distance as a hooded figure slowly approaches the group, arm tracing a line against the rough-hewn stone of the catacomb walls. The figure steps forward, out of the crowd, and stands next to the person in black. Lilliana pulls down her hood, revealing shock-white hair and a devil-may-care grin. Cybernetics are quite evident across her body, particularly the arms. She looks at the group and responds in kind, a clear tone ringing forth.

I see we have company,
Certainly a rarity.
Now, for how long...
That's the mystery.

You all speak of freedom,
You all speak of danger.
When it comes to all of that,
I'm no stranger.


The crowd echoes out, She's no stranger!

Up above, what would you do...?

Atlatl
Jan 2, 2008

Art thou doubting
your best bro?


Pavel
Traits:
Fearless | Resilient | Veteran | Crass

Hands stuffed firmly in his pockets, Pavel turns away to nobody in particular. "Yeeaaaahhh, just gonna keep my mouth shut and let someone else answer that one..."

grassy gnoll
Aug 27, 2006

The pawsting business is tough work.

Gun Saliva

Below the Cathedral

There is a sudden silence as Lily pipes up. Worried glances are exchanged among the under-dwellers. Even the huge whatever-they-are takes a moment to pause.

The person clad in noble's attire drums gloved fingertips against the area that presumably contains their chin. "No stranger, indeed. Lily, do you mean to say you know these people?"

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

Ema falls quiet for a moment, looking to Pavel for a moment, and then takes a moment to adjust her collar self-consciously.

"I'm a Colt, that means I protect people.", she says softly. "... but so many here... and so many back home..." Her brow knits faintly, as she seems to consider this.

Tricky
Jun 12, 2007

after a great meal i like to lie on the ground and feel like garbage



Lilliana Sin
Traits:
Insightful | Genuine | Leader | Hot-Blooded

Lily's finger traces a faint, almost accusing line over the group as she slowly indicates the musician, Exu. She says, "I don't know if she remembers, but I was in the hospital she visited. More humanity than I'd have expected from someone of her station."

grassy gnoll
Aug 27, 2006

The pawsting business is tough work.

Gun Saliva

Beneath the Cathedral - Village

"I see, I see," says the possibly noble figure, drumming gloved fingers along where its lips might be.

"Very well. Please excuse my prior behavior, but you must understand, I cannot allow these poor people to come to harm. Perhaps the isolation has made us - made me - paranoid." The box on the figure's belt makes an odd noise, somewhere between a frog's belching and a rasp against metal. but none of the accumulated under-dwellers pay it much mind.

"Pleased to meet you," it says, extending a hand to Exu. "Call me Roy."

K Prime
Nov 4, 2009



Exu

"You... you were there?!" says Exu, a look of shock crossing her delicate features. She stops herself for a moment, drilled etiquette kicking in, to politely take Roy's hand and give a little bow over it, murmuring a thanks. "You were in that hell? How did you survive?"

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

Ema tries to dust off some of the muck and dirt from her pants, but it's a largely doomed endeavor. After a moment, she bows, and says, "Ema Colt, from La Nova. I came to get help for the people there, but... things have gotten complicated really quickly, and we had to escape a riot, and I guess we upset a-" She straightens up. "Anyway, I apologize if we've troubled you. We were just hoping to find flight from the fighting up above."

Atlatl
Jan 2, 2008

Art thou doubting
your best bro?


Pavel
Traits:
Fearless | Resilient | Veteran | Crass

"Or flight to the fight, for some." Pavel thumbs to Adolphus.

Tricky
Jun 12, 2007

after a great meal i like to lie on the ground and feel like garbage



Lilliana Sin
Traits:
Insightful | Genuine | Leader | Hot-Blooded

Light glints off of Lily's extensive cybernetics and the rebel gives a bit of a sad smile at Exu's question. She says, "Survival? It wasn't easy. And, well, not much of me made it out."

grassy gnoll
Aug 27, 2006

The pawsting business is tough work.

Gun Saliva

Beneath the Cathedral - Village

Roy seems content to let Exu and the cybernetically-enhanced underdweller catch up, as it is. Your new friend offers Ema a mostly unsoiled handkerchief, with tattered lace edging.

"A fight? Dear me. I suspect the Bishop will have quite a mess on its hands. Though if you plan to leave by the other routes, you may have your work cut out for you, as I imagine the lot of you cannot hold your breath for an hour or so or climb a sheer wall."

Roy crouches above a mud puddle and sketches out a quick diagram of your surroundings. Most of it is the giant cistern you're currently occupying, but it seems like there are some maintenance tunnels that lead back to the surface. The glow from Roy's voicebox is enough to let you get a good picture of the picture. The prissy underdweller finishes their map, tapping the tail end of a passage with a final splat.

"You can return to the surface here, but I'm afraid this pathway leads you to a civic building that as of late has been occupied by a company of the Kingsguard, who I imagine would not take kindly to you appearing in their midst. Your chances with them are better than with the sudden drop or a sodden grave, I expect."

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Ema Colt
Traits:
Chatty | Just | Wide-Eyed

Taking the hankerchief, Ema blinks in surprise. "Oh- thank you.", she says, before holding it close to her chest. "Well, I'm certain I can just explain things reasonably to them! And if not... well... ah..." She smiles weakly and shrugs with her palms up. "Well, I suppose we'd have to improvise."

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Atlatl
Jan 2, 2008

Art thou doubting
your best bro?


Pavel
Traits:
Fearless | Resilient | Veteran | Crass

Pavel clears his throat. "I'll talk to them. We'll be fine, trust me."

He doesn't come off as the trustworthy type.

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