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Band (Worm/Scion)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by BrotherMouse518, Jul 26, 2020.

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  1. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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  2. Assblaster5000

    Assblaster5000 Know what you're doing yet?

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  3. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    I get ideas when i try to distract myself from thinking unkind thoughts at work when my boss acts like me being there fjust or the paycheck is the jltimate sin.
     
  4. Simonbob

    Simonbob Really? You don't say.

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    Depends.


    Question, what does it change? Ask yourself that, then ask if that helps your story.


    If it dilutes your story, it might not help.
     
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  5. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    It gives me hooks for plotlines, i write more pulp style adventures than I do grand overarching narrative. I mean there is one, but its the Scion progression; Your Origin, your time as a Hero, becoming a true Demigod, then if you can get there. Godhood.

    The story? How this Band of Heroes forms and how they change the world through their actions, while going through life as they know it and dealing with the much larger world coming in.
     
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  6. Simonbob

    Simonbob Really? You don't say.

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    There's plenty already there. There's a danger of a lack of focus, leading to a story that's pretty much original tale.

    If this is fanfiction, you do need Worm. How does Annette being mystical work with, or against, that?



    I'm not saying "NO!!!". I'm saying, think it through, and don't forget how it will shape those already in the story.
     
  7. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Thanks man. That does help.
     
  8. Threadmarks: Bend & Break 2.3
    BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Donnie

    01/10/11​

    I awoke to the dulcet tones of Stevie Knicks blasting out of my stereo alarm, the digital numbers flashing 5:30 AM. Rather than slapping the snooze button, I decided to let it play and be the soundtrack to my morning routine;
    1. Bathing
    2. Grooming
    3. Wardrobe
    4. Giving my precious Pegaso watch the TLC it deserves
    5. Putting on the day’s smile

    Bathing is self explanatory, a solid thirty minutes of meticulous maintenance of my majestic body. The soap and shampoo are not the luxury trash that my contemporaries in the modeling scene favor or shill, none of it feels right on my skin or in my hair. No, I preferred this peculiar homemade stuff that Nessa had recommended around the time we first met, a local salon made it and I made damn sure to buy in bulk and pay a little extra for the trouble.

    Don’t judge, shit works.

    Only on special occasions do I spend a particularly long time grooming myself, especially nowadays. I usually go for something simple with my hair; a sidepart, slicked back, maybe a pompadour or faux hawk if I want to go a little wild. After hair is done right, it’s on to the choice of fragrance. Today’s agenda is open and most likely will be spent with Pops now that he’s settling in and getting our new home ready, while that may not mean manual labor or lots of physical activity it would still be a good idea to go for some basic deodorant and antiperspirant.

    Wardrobe is a simple choice; a sport coat and a pair of my nicer jeans. Perfect for spending time with Pops no matter the setting! Which leaves putting on the days smile, after all you’re never fully dressed without one!

    By the time this is all said and done, it’s already 7 in the AM and time for breakfast, which as always is plain oatmeal and a tall glass of OJ.

    Breakfast for me has always been a time of quiet reflection, Mom and Pops were usually up earlier than me and had their morning routine complete by the time I was ready and they’d often be out of the house at work or elsewhere, leaving me alone. I mean it sucked when I was younger but with Pops finally being allowed to explain? Yeah, makes sense. It’s all thanks to Great Gramps, that horny bastard! Aside from being stoked about the family secret, Pops coming home, and planning my debut on the scene my thoughts were of my new…acquaintances. I hadn’t earned the privilege of calling them friend just yet.

    Lily I spent the least amount of time with but she is most certainly the most interesting, still can’t believe that I actually ran in to her so soon and prior to her finding herself. To find her so genuine and open, in this city of all places made assessment rather easy;

    The rising sun, finally able to feel its own warmth again​

    Taylor is the perfect apprentice and despite her own modesty is a quick learner and a damn fine student, I never had the chance to really think on a proper assessment for her when we had first met, but now that she’s my student?

    A bird almost broken down, now finally breaking free​

    Walt may not wear his heart on his sleeve but he sure has his intentions clear, he was the toughest assessment out of all of em and I wasn’t certain that it was a correct one.

    Stoicism wrapped tightly around cotton pretending its a cactus​

    I was honestly surprised that they had gone along with my idea to hang out, Walt especially, and Lily actually providing the entertainment. I mean I’m not really a fan of capeshit, Aleph or otherwise, but I do enjoy cheese. Especially when I get to dick around and talk over it without complaint, and hey my audience seemed to enjoy it. Still, with school back in session it’s gonna be a bitch to have the time to hang with them. Figures the first peers I find that aren’t vapid shitheads like that ginger broad from the totally-not-DIESEL shoot or workaholics that dedicate their social lives to family and their SO like Nessa have to go to public school. It wasn’t like I couldn’t spend time with them in study sessions, especially as much of a genius as I am, but good fucking gods above and below would that be dull.

    Before I could jump further down that thought pit, Pops popped in to the parlor with his usual winning smile and relaxed demeanor. I looked up and tried to match his smile but not quite able to capture how genuine it is. Never could make a completely genuine smile anyway.

    “Morning, son.” he says as he takes a seat by me. “Sleep well?”

    “I guess.” I replied honestly “Still kinda jazzed from last night.”

    “That movie night with your apprentice, her cowboy friend, and little miss sunshine?” Pops beamed and leaned in towards me “My son finally taking an interest in spending time with people his own age, I should check out the window for pigs flying or for your grandma to be celibate.”

    I let out a small chuckle before taking the last bite of my oatmeal, savoring the blandness

    “Mom still…” I started

    “With Kyushu?” Pops finished “Yeah.”

    I looked down into my empty bowl, trying to tamp down on the frustration growing in me. Pops put his hand on my shoulder. I’d never admit this out loud, but I still felt like little kid whenever Pops did that or hugged me. Not like in a “not being taken serious” way, but in a nostalgic way. Safety, security, warmth, comfort. That kind of shit.

    “Don’t worry Donald.” He said, using my full first name. Him and Mom are the only people who get to call me Donald. “She’s doing a whole lot better then the rest of us up here, that’s for sure.”

    “If you say so…” I grumbled out

    “On to more down to earth topics then.” Pops let go of my shoulder and leaned back into his chair “You got anything planned today?”

    “Not really.”

    “Wanna come with your dear old dad to work? Ride along and see what you’ll be doing once you graduate?”

    You would think that I, being a rather wealthy and drop dead gorgeous dude, would decline. You’d be dead fucking wrong.

    “Really!?” I shot out of my seat like a rocket and I didn’t have to fake my smile this time

    Pops chuckled and got up, I’ve been told that I look like my dad one for one barring two things; my hair color which I got from Mom, and my height which I got from mom’s side of the family. I mean five seven is not short for a guy, but Jesus friggin Christo my dad’s almost six foot!

    “Yeah, I only have two meetings today; one with Medhall and one with the dock union we’re sourcing for that waterfront restoration project.” He pulled me in for a one armed hug that I returned “Figured Max will be off his game when I got my pride and joy tagging along actually paying attention and learning something, and then we get some lunch. Afterwards is a meeting with a union boss over at the docks.”

    “Pops. I would be more than honored to help you rub salt in his soon to be fresh wounds.”

    Pops gave me an honest to Him pat on the back with an “Atta boy”

    After that it was off to the car, Pops saw a thing on the President’s “Ground Force One” or whatever its called and got a friend of his to whip one up for him. Not that he needed it of course. Pops made sure to greet and chat up the driver, didn’t catch his name. We didn’t make a beeline for Medhall, Pops wanted to stop by the sort of temporary ghetto set up the transitional team were working out of in the heart of downtown, office space they were renting out was one part of a four way sandwich with an old ass clock tower as the filling. Yeah that was the most interesting thing to come out of meeting with the transitional team, Pops was brought up to speed, he called some plays, team went out to do em. Meanwhile I got glimpses of that weird clock tower.

    Then it was off to Medhall, and sadly that was a bust but not busty. They had to reschedule last minute for some reason or another, Pops was a little miffed but more so at how last minute it was. Well at least it gave us more time for lunch. Sadly Pops chose some ritzy five starred fancy feast kinda joint. Personally I coulda gone for some pizza, but Pops likes these places if only for one particular reason.

    Looking over this style over substance joint’s menu somehow managed to make me feel less hungry. Still, I gave Pops a sly look before I snapped my fingers and gave a good cry of “Garcon!” to summon the waiter.

    “What can I get for you gentlemen this fine afternoon?” He asked in a faux upper crust New England accent.

    “I’d like to order something off menu.” I said, closing the menu and giving the poor sap an aloof and indifferent look, relishing the frustration and fear building in the guy’s expressions “How about a good old American staple; get me a grilled cheese and a tallboy of coke.”

    The waiter tried to hide his distressed gulp before asking me on what kind of bread and what kind of cheese. I told him rye and five slices of American. He looked over to Pops like he would tell me no or at least order something on the menu.

    “I’ll have the same thing my son is having but with a bottle of Corona Especial instead.” is what he said instead

    I love it when my father joins in on my BS. Seeing these poor bastards in these stuffy places scurry like chickens with their heads cut off is just…

    ...Divine

    He and I both watched as the waiter walked into the kitchen and shortly after ran out with the chef shouting the most obscene list of threats ever spoken in French. Pops and I had a laugh. Took the guy forty five minutes to get back with the ingredients looking like he had to fight off some of those Azn Bitch Boys to get em. Little while later, there was a rather tasty looking pair of grilled cheeses. The waitstaff were huddled near who I assumed to be the maître d' or the manager.

    “Thank you.” Pops said to the waiter, a different one from the poor bastard they sent out “Please, stay.”

    A quick glance to the huddle of waiters told me they were nervous. Pops and I took our first bites of our sandwiches.

    “How is it, son?”

    I chewed and savored it for a few more seconds before swallowing and wiping away the crumbs

    “This is the best fucking grilled cheese I’ve had in a while.” I told the waiter as I popped the tab of the can of coke.

    “I agree with my boy.” he says, handing a couple hundreds to the waiter. “Make sure that gets to the poor kid they sent as a runner.”

    Aside from that bit of fuckery, lunch was rather relaxing. Once we were back in the car, Pops raised the privacy screen and asked me a question that I was simultaneously prepared and not prepared to answer.

    “Well, I have no real segue into this question so I’m just going to ask you outright, son.” Pops leaned towards me conspiratorially and stage whispered “Are you still dead set on doing the superhero thing?”

    “Of course, dear father.” A wave of smug assurance filled me as I relaxed in my seat by him. “If Alex can do it by accident then I can surely do just as well if not better intentionally.”

    Ah yes, my dear cousin Alex. He got dragged into the scene and the family got quite pissed from what I heard, I didn’t get the chance to ask him how that happened at the family New Years shindig but he’s local and he did say that I could hit him up for tips whenever.

    “Jesus, Donald.” Pops shook his head and let out a sigh “I mean, I’d be doing the same thing in your position, but are you sure you want to go out in a costume and beat up tweakers, neo nazis, and whoever that lazy wannabe dragon drags into his posse every other night?”

    I faux pouted and crossed my arms, donning a totally-not-serious serious expression

    “Yus!” I said before gesticulating with every subsequent word. “The blood of heroes courses within my veins like a rushing waterfall cascading down the majestic cliffs of the highest mountains as the sun rises!”

    I dropped my act and gave my father the best “It’s gonna be cool, bruh” look I could muster.

    “Besides, I already have my name picked out; I’m gonna be forever known as…” I paused and posed for effect “...The Levin Legend!”

    Sadly trying to raise your fist to the sky in a car is liable to make you punch the roof, and yes it will hurt and make you yelp.

    “Son that sounds like copyright infringement.” Pops just had to burst my bubble with that “That sounds a lot like Legend and you’re probably going to have to shorten it or change it.”

    “Nonsense!” I said after nursing my fist “That has been will have to change his name when I hit the scene…”

    I’m hotter, my powers are radder, my style is better, and I can sing and dance.

    Pops just shook his head again

    “Regardless boy, you will need some extra firepower.” Pops gave me a pat on the shoulder “Soon your Birthright will be ready and you can galavant around in spandex and harrassing the local scum.”

    Hah! As if I would ever be caught dead in spandex. I’m going for the street clothes costume style!

    Conversation took a dip once we got to the docks. Business mode was once again activated we walked straight into the office of the de facto boss of the operation; another beanpole with glasses and dark hair! Mr. Beanpole’s sudden rise from his seat knocked over his nameplate and made him hurt his knee.

    “Mr. Rhodes!” he said, trying desperately to not sound nervous.

    Pops took it in stride and came up to give the man a handshake.

    “It’s a pleasure to meet you in person, Mr. Hebert.”

    Huh. Another “Hee-bert” as opposed to “A-bear”

    “This here’s my son, Donald Rhodes III.”

    Oh right, Pops introducing me.

    “Good to meet you Mr. Hebert.” I said, politely and without my usual “I don’t give a fuck” attitude and with my hand outstretched. I needed my best foot forward for this. “Would you happen to be related to a Taylor Hebert?”

    “I have a daughter named Taylor.” he said cautiously and with an even more cautious squint and a slightly tense squeeze of my hand as we shook.

    “About five-six mostly leg, long black hair, glasses?” I said, trying not to do the test of strength on him

    “Yes?”

    “Small world! I’m her flute teacher.” I said with a smile “I’m a regular at McCullough’s and Saoirse asked me if I was willing to take on a student.”

    If I could let out a sigh and not make it obvious that I was nervous I would have.

    “Yeah…” Mr. Hebert let go of my hand and smiled fondly with a hint of old melancholy. “…she’s been practicing every night. Her mom would be proud.”

    I put on the most friendly and sympathetic smile I could paint on

    "How 'bout you?” I ask him “You proud of her?”

    Mr. Hebert’s melancholic smile left and in came a much softer and happier replacement

    “Yeah. I am.”

    With that, I had an assessment for him…

    A man once broken, now reforged​

    Oh how I wish I could freely gush over my apprentice’s progress to her precious padre! But alas, this is the time of my father and hers to break metaphorical bread and I shall have to reserve the gushing and glowing gabbery for when both she and her father are together.

    THE BASHFUL LOOK ON HER FACE SHALL FOREVER BE ETCHED IN TO MY MEMORY FOR IT SHALL BE CUTE!

    Anywho…

    Pops gently nudged the conversation back off the tangent I had caused and continued on with their business, which I only half-heartedly listened to. Mr. Hebert and Pops signed the deal contract, we got a tour and quick introduction with all the other jefes of the operation, staggered back to the office. I don’t know if this is a me being so young thing, but I don’t think I’ll be all that big into this side of the family biz. Eh, thoughts for later.

    Of course, something just had to go wrong.

    As soon as we got back in to the office, Mr. Hebert’s secretary came outside looking like she had just seen cousin T.

    “Danny…” The woman said “…Taylor is in the hospital.”

    That’s when things actually got a little blurry. My apprentice was hurt, my first apprentice, an apprentice that I hope would grant me the honor of being able to call her friend, was hurt. The only thing that I know for certain was that Pops got us all in our car and had the driver rush us to the hospital. We were greeted by Saoirse, Finn, and to my honest surprise Lily and her mom.

    Mr. Hebert asked them what they were doing there and Saoirse told us that Walt got hospitalized too, Lily and her mom were at McCullough’s and they drove Finn and Saoirse over here when they got the call. A nurse or something came by and told us Taylor was in surgery, Walt got put in a hospital room and would probably be cleared in a couple hours, we were shown where the OR waiting room was and she pointed out that Walt’s room was right around the corner. Lucky us I guess. Finn and Pops stayed with Mr. Hebert while the rest of us went to go visit the cowboy. We didn’t have to go all that far, Walt was shoving his way past nurses with his chest all bound in bandages and gauze.

    Saoirse ran up and gave him a hug, Walt winced in pain but didn’t make any sound.

    “I’m fine grandma.” he was trying to hide that he was still in painkiller

    I tried to get my head back into the game, maybe lighten the mood a bit

    “What they run out of pain pills or something, cowboy?”

    Lily socked me in the arm for that and damn did it hurt

    “Not the time.” Her voice was in full “don’t fuck around” mode

    “I refused the anesthesia and painkillers they wanted to use, I don’t need em.” Walt said with a smirk

    “Sure, you macho bastard, why else would you be doing your damnedest trying to hide the fact that you are in a lot of pain?” Is what I would say if I wasn’t so out of it.

    “Either way, any word on Taylor?” he said, the smirk leaving his mug

    “Still in the OR.” Saoirse said, her face filled with worry “What happened to you two?”

    Walt told us about how Taylor got shoved into a locker filled with some bio waste and was stuck in there for hours, while he got jumped in the bathroom and got knocked unconscious. Saoirse made some sort of comment about how she knew sending him to “that school” was a bad idea, whichever one that was, and Lily’s Mom was trying to tell her it wasn’t her fault.

    What the fuck kind of shithole lets a pair of students just get attacked and then let go missing on their own damn campus?

    Lily’s eyes went wide and then she had the look of someone trying not to punch someone out, I was getting there myself. Afterwards Lily’s mom lead Saoirse back to the waiting room while we stayed in the hall, Walt wanted to say something away from the adult’s ears.

    “I think I know someone who was involved.”

    Lily and I looked to Walt

    “What do you mean?” I urged him to elaborate

    “On the eighth, when I was getting sandwiches. I ran into a girl, she was attacked and I helped her out. She told me that she deserved it because of some thing her and some friends were doing to a girl at their school. She told me the latest ‘prank’ they had planned was too fucked up, a prank involving a locker stuffed with biological waste.”

    Lily caught on and said something faster than me “Like what happened to Taylor.” she said, connecting the dots. Walt nodded and continued on.

    “She used aliases for everyone involved, even the girl they were ‘pranking’ had one. She was distraught and kept saying she didn’t know what to do, I just snapped at her and told her to confess. If it was the same girl, then I guess she simply decided to let it happen to save her own worthless skin.”

    “Makes sense I guess…” was all I could say, I couldn’t think straight.

    “Wait.” Lily interjected “Walt you said that it was this girl and some friends, you also said that this girl was guilty right?”

    “Yes?” Walt crossed his arms over his chest, gently “Not guilty enough to confess it seems.”

    “That’s the thing. What if it wasn’t that she didn’t, but she couldn’t?”

    I wasn’t quite following her line of thought so I asked “What do you mean Lily?”

    “If her friends were psycho enough to shove someone into a glorified iron maiden, what if one of them found out that this mystery girl with a guilty conscience was going to snitch on all of them and they did something to her?

    Well, truth is stranger than fiction

    “Still…” Before Walt could finish his thought, a pair of Brockton Bay’s Finest Fuckups rolled up

    “Walter Connolly?” One of them asked

    Walt nodded his head at the officer “There an issue officer?”

    “You’re under arrest.”

    I’m sorry

    “What!?” I was fucking pissed. “On what grounds?”

    “Assaulting his teacher.” The cop replied

    I heard a bunch of footsteps behind me, Saoirse’s voice crying out in shock. I was about to get in that fucking cop’s fucking fuckup face, but Lily’s arm across my chest stopped me. I looked down towards her and she shook her head at me. Walt could barely hide how pissed he was but somehow he managed to not take a swing at the cops trying to arrest him. Then he said something that I never expected to hear anyone say in this town;

    “I’ll come quietly.”

    Saoirse became a little frantic, Finn was trying to chew out the cops, taking down their badge numbers, Lily’s mom was swearing up a storm in Japanese. Walt just offered up his wrists as the cops read him his rights.

    “Don’t say a damn thing to ‘em.” I told him “We’re getting you a lawyer!”

    I meant me when I said we. Even if Pops tried to stop me from using the family money I still had enough stashed away to get him a decent one. He just nodded and let the cops walk him into the hospital and off to a cage. Two people I’ve grown fond of, one is fighting for her life because of some psycho bitches and the other is being dragged off to be thrown in a cage. I was getting progressively angrier by the minute and I neeeded out.

    “I need to get some air.” I told everyone, Lily tried stopping me from hitting the stairs but I guess the look on my face said it all. She let me go, her features looking as upset as me.

    I was trying desperately not to lash out at the wall or any of the staff I passed as I walked down to the first floor. Once I got there I walked out the front door, felt more like I was shambling then walking to be honest. I wandered around the outside, finding a free bench to sit on. Trying to sort through all the stormy emotions and thoughts buzzing around my dome while I stared at the ground. Eventually, a pair of running shoes on some track suit girl broke my train of thought.

    “You ok?” The voice that asked me that stupid question sounded utterly alien from such a harsh voice with a hint of bitch. I looked up to see the person I was about to yell at’s face. Brown eyed black chick with long straight black hair. She had a look of concern that seemed faker than most of my smiles and more plastic than a Barbie. Like someone who had never shown concern to another person before and was trying to mimic it

    “Some people I know got put in the hospital.” I wasn’t fucking around and didn’t bother hiding how pissed I was “One of them got hauled off by the cops just as he gets all patched up and the other is in surgery. How the fuck do you think I feel.”

    “Oh.” Was all she said, I think she told me her name too but I wasn’t listening.

    I just tuned her out as she kept yapping and yapping away, eventually I snapped at her and said

    “Look I’m really not in the mood to talk right now and I won’t be for a while, could you just leave me alone?”

    Tracksuit girl had this weird look on her face that I couldn’t quite place

    “When would you be in the mood?”

    Something about that tone she had didn’t sit right with me either, but I was too angry to notice at the time

    “When the psycho that put my friend in the ER gets whats coming to her.”

    Even said sarcastically, I didn’t like it. Still didn't’ earn either of their friendship. It got quiet for a bit, tracksuit girl just stood there for about a minute.

    Then she broke that silence with a very cheerful and very creepy “OK!”

    The way she said it, just left me feeling nothing but dread.

    Nearly three weeks of me hitting my head against the wall lead me to this. I sincerely apologise for the delay, Donnie is extremely difficult to write in the first person and difficult to get into the headspace of. Please tell me how this turned out and point out my mistakes I typed this up in states not favorable for coherence and I am just about to pass out writing this note. Have a good one.
     
  9. Assblaster5000

    Assblaster5000 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Oh boy. I can't see this turning into anything less than a clusterfuck.

    I have no idea what that clusterfuck is going to look like, but Bad Thingstm are going to happen to people that probably don't deserve it that bad.

    Can't wait to see what happens next.
     
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  10. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Oh you have no idea...
     
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  11. Simonbob

    Simonbob Really? You don't say.

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    It's hard, deciding what details Donnie notices, isn't it?

    What a fuzzy headed guy.
     
  12. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Yeah. He really doesnt think of things outside of his personal world. He essentially tunes out a lot, has a train of thought that switches lanes constantly, and consideres most things unimportant. When he does have something he finds interesting or important enough to actually pay attention, like say a girl he almost hits with his bike, or a guy that works at a shop he frequents, or a guy thats about to work for his father on something big.
     
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  13. Extras: Sidestory: Super X-Mas Funtime Now!
    BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Twas the night before Christmas, in good old Oh-One
    Not a creature was stirring, OK maybe more than none!
    Stockings hung by chimneys and entertainment centers with care
    Not knowing that this year, St. Nicholas soon would be there;

    Five kids in particular all out of their beds,
    All but one with thoughts of meeting Santa filling their heads
    Two in Owl Creek and three in Brockton Bay
    All five up and keeping that Sandman away

    Soon that night all five would hear
    The sound of eight thunderous hooves drawing near…



    Taylor Hebert knew that she shouldn’t be hiding in her living room under a massive blanket pile, but this year she knew she had a higher chance of finally seeing Santa deliver presents. She didn’t know why of course, she just knew. Her parents had gone off to bed a bit earlier than usual and she was able to sneak downstairs with all of her extra blankets without making too much noise. She didn’t have to wait long, sleigh-bells and beating hooves came and raised her spirits, giving her the widest grin of her life so far!

    A shower of lights shaped like snowflakes emanated from somewhere above her and poured into the shape of a very tall man. With a swift shine, the light faded and was replaced with a man in a red coat and a large hat with a large red sack slung over his shoulder, from her hiding spot she could see the edges of his face and a bit of the large white beard. Taylor watched silently with wide eyes filled with wonder, trying not to make any noise as the man quietly and pulled present after present from his sack placing them with care underneath the heavily decorated Christmas tree her and her family worked so hard on. Taylor thought it was strange that Santa didn’t have the floppy hat with the puffball on the end of it, or wasn’t all that overweight but she simply chocked up the latter up to him cutting back on sweets and the former on the off chance that maybe he had more than one hat.

    Soon the man finished up, rose to his feet, polished off the plate of cookies and milk that Taylor had left out for him. As the man turned around Taylor let out a small gasp finally catching a good look at the man’s face, especially the lone visible eye that turned down to gaze at her hiding spot. The man smiled warmly and held up a finger to his lips as he dissipated into that strange light he had arrived in.

    The only thing that Taylor could say was a whispered out

    “Wow…”




    Four year old Lily Vargas waited until her family turned in for the night, being as quiet as possible. She had heard the sleigh-bells and the sound of hooves landing on her house’s roof, and she knew that it was Santa. Slowly and sneakily like the ninja that Jiji would tell her stories about, despite how young she was she had memorized every creaky floorboard and step in the house, precisely for this moment.

    Inch by inch, she crept down the hall then down the steps. Her home had a proper chimney and it had stockings hanging (all of them hand sewn by her Nana) and instead of a proper pine, there was a bonsai that her mother had managed to grow to an above average size (which took quite a bit of diligence and perseverance) on a table acting as their Christmas tree, presents put around the pot of the bonsai and some of the larger wrapped gifts were under it. All was as it were when Lily was sent off to bed…

    Well, except for the tall man in a red coat with fluffy white trim of course. From her place behind the living room couch, Lily smiled as she took in the man’s presence. The man was pulling festively wrapped boxes out of a large red sack and placing them all around and under the tree, humming a Christmas song to himself.

    An even larger smile spread across Lily’s face as she crawled around the side of the couch, trying to get a better look at the man. She saw that his face was pale with rosy cheeks, he had a large and magnificent white beard, and on his head was a broad red hat cocked in a way that obscured his left eye. Lily knew deep in her heart who this man was, what child who knew of Christmas didn’t? Much to Lily’s confusion he was not fat, but it did make more sense for him to be skinnier if he had to slide down chimneys all night.

    Still calling on the sneakiness of the ninja, she crept closer to the man and knelt beside him, his attention on the gifts he was leaving behind and unaware of the little tyke by his side.

    “Hello Santa.” Lily quietly said.

    The man froze in place, slowly turning his head to face her.

    “Hello, Lily.” The man slowly and somewhat sheepishly said in a voice deeper than the ocean “You should not be up so late, young lady.”

    Lily simply smiled, pointed up to the ceiling, and said “I heard your reindeer and sleigh bells.”

    The man rose to his full height, to Lily it was as if the roof had to suck in its gut to give the man space. The man in red let out a sigh and smiled at her.

    “Most people, even the good children of the World, cannot hear them.” the mans voice seemed to boom even with how quietly he spoke “To be able to hear them…”

    Lily tilted her head in confusion, not quite understanding what the man meant. The man looked down at her with a wide and joyful grin.

    “Neither here nor there…” The man said, reaching into his sack full of gifts and pulling out a wide rectangular box “…I believe you had written about this in your letter?”

    Lily’s eyes went wide and she gasped in excitement “Is that?”

    “You’ll have to wait until your parents wake and you open all your gifts.” The man chuckled and placed the box under the manicured tree. “Moments like this are best shared with family after all.”

    Lily nodded her head and smiled as the man closed the drawstring of his sack and slung it over his shoulder. She ran to the man and gave him a quick hug before swiftly and quietly returning to her room. As she crept back up the stairs, she heard the bells and hooves atop the roof as they kicked off into the night, followed by the man’s booming laugh.

    Lily did as she was told and snuggled herself off back to bed and slept, knowing that the morning would bring nothing but joy.




    In all of Donald Rhodes III’s six years of life, never had he been more excited for Christmas. His father took him along on his business trip, his mother was able to visit for a short while, and they both told him the true story of Santa Claus. His father had let him stay up along with him by the fireplace of the penthouse hotel room they were staying in, just so they could meet the man in person. Donnie’s father had poured out two tall glasses of eggnog and he had put on an old Frank Sinatra Christmas record for the both of them to relax to as they sat on, what Donnie thought of, as the world’s most comfortable couch waiting for their future guest.

    “Pops?” Donnie asked “How will Santa know to come here? We don’t actually live here.”

    Donnie’s father gave him a smile and a shrug of his shoulders “No clue son. I never thought to ask.”

    Despite the unsatisfying answer, Donnie did not pout or whine. That way lead to the naughty list and he didn’t want to take his chances so close to the Big Man’s arrival. He simply took another sip of the delicious eggnog and figured he’d just ask the man himself when he arrived. He wouldn’t have to wait much longer; soon he heard the chiming bells of a sleigh, thunderous hooves, and then saw a shower of strange light shaped like snowflakes pouring out past the lit fireplace forming into a tall man with a big white beard in a big red coat.

    “YOU CAME!” Donnie shouted in excitement, almost spilling his eggnog as he shot to his feet.

    The man in question raised a single brow from his uncovered eye, a small smile forming as he looked to Donnie’s father raising a toast to him. The man chuckled softly and tipped the brim of his wide hat in reply. Donnie zipped forward and excitedly circled the man, almost as if he was taking stock of him as he shotgunned out words a mile a minute

    “Pops told me all about you and how your story got started, how the elves really are, about your sleigh, everything! He even let me stay up to meet you!”

    The man just chuckled and gave a warm smile to the boy, he then turned his gaze to Donnie’s father and said “So you told him all about me, eh?”

    Donnie’s father took a sip of his eggnog and replied “He needed some cheering up this year.”

    The man shook his head and pulled out a long wrapped box from his sack, and handed it to Donnie

    “Now make sure he does not open it till at least after midnight Mr. Rhodes.” the man said sternly with a pointed finger that opened into a wave goodbye and a short bow of his head “Until next year Mr. Rhodes, young Mr. Rhodes.”

    With that, the man became a shower of light and rose up out of the chimney with Donnie waving goodbye.




    Owl Creek, Wyoming. “The Ass-End of Nowhere, of the Ass-End of Nowhere.” as the rather bitter Grandfather of one Walter Connolly referred to it.

    While the Connolly ranch was in no way festive in any capacity there was still a lone pine in the living room right by the fireplace, albeit a bare one. There were no decorations, no presents, and it was there only for the sake of tradition that there even was a tree. Roused from his sleep by a fit of restlessness was a lone boy of five, Walter Connolly. He had come out of his room to come into the kitchen for a glass of milk and maybe a sandwich, knowing that if he had asked his Grandfather he would most likely get a stern talking to and then have to serve a glass of milk and make a sandwich for him while being sent back to bed with nothing for the trouble. The sound of sleigh-bells and hooves beating along the ground as something large touched down on the roof of his home broke his silent concentration. With that, Walt swiftly and silently made his way to a special cabinet in this wing of the Connolly home. His Grandfather forbid him from using all but one item within it, a fully charged cattle prod.

    Walt put on the pair of insulated work gloves then he held the prod as if he were presenting arms in formation. He quickly took position in a small nook that would be an optimum ambush position for any intruder. As he waited, he saw a small shimmer of light around the corner, near the fireplace. He heard a man sighing and something heavy hitting the floor. Walt crept closer with his cattle prod primed and ready. He took in the intruder as he came closer; all dressed in red and with a large hat and a big white beard. Walt crept close enough to be able to swiftly jab the intruder with enough volts to drop any man alive within seconds.

    Walt steeled himself and did his best impression of his Grandfather in a staredown “You got a lot of nerve breaking into my home, friend.”

    The intruder merely let out a sigh and kept rifling through his sack.

    “And you are up far later than you should be, Mr. Connolly.” the man said with a voice full of stern resignation “Then again, I recall your father did something similar when he was your age. Although he had a loaded gun on me rather than a cattle prod.”

    Walt tried not to react to the strange intruder’s words, but curiosity got the better of him.

    “You knew my father?” he asked, his voice betraying a hint of longing and no longer holding the aped edge of his Grandfather

    “Of course.” The man simply stated, reaching deeper into the sack

    Walt shook his head and regained his composure “You need to leave before I stick you.” he said without bite.

    The man shook his head, and merely muttered “Finally…” as he pulled out a box from the sack. The man left the box underneath the pine tree by that bare fireplace and turned his head a bit towards his tiny captor.

    “I believe you wrote a letter asking for this?”

    Walt began trembling, whether in fear or anticipation he didn’t know. “I didn’t write you any letter, creep.” he said, voice quaking a bit

    “You did not write a letter to Santa Claus at school? The first letter you had ever written to him? After telling your teacher that he was not real?” the man asked

    Walt wondered how he could possibly have even known that but decided to humor him.

    “She said if I didn’t do the assignment I would have to tell Grandfather that I was being defiant in class.” Walt left out the fear of what new and unusual chore he would have to do alone if that were to have come to pass

    “So you wrote a letter saying how you did not believe in Santa Claus and asked for something that you felt was impossible.”

    The man gestured to the wrapped package with his hand before rising to his feet.

    “I would not take offense to you opening it prior to midnight, Walter.” the man said with a nod of his head. “Merry Christmas.”

    With that, the man became a shower of lights shaped like snowflakes and flew up the chimney leaving Walt alone with his cattle prod and that lone package under the skirt of pine needles. As he stood there staring at the package, he heard those bells and hooves once again as they soared off into the night sky. Walt did his best to ignore the strange and fantastical sight before him and merely stared at the spot the man once stood. Soon after Walt steeled himself and placed the cattle prod and gloves back into the very special cabinet at their proper place next to Grandfather’s brush rifle, then took that wrapped package back to his room. He would sit in his bed and contemplate weather or not he should open it for another hour…




    The Cheyenne Indian Reservation near Owl Creek, Wyoming was not the first place someone thought of when it came to Christmas cheer. The majority of the population not being any form of Catholic or Chrisitan would do that, however this did not stop the people of the Cheyenne nation celebrating it their own way. Many still did a gift exchange, some put up Christmas trees with their own style of festive kitsch to decorate it, and many more gathered with their kin if only for an excuse to have a feast and make merry. Even if it did not look it, the Rez as the youth of the place called it held the feeling of seasonal cheer.

    Well, all but one house that is.

    It was the home of the Standing-Bear family. A Husband, a Wife, and a Thing.

    The Husband was the head of the Cheyenne Tribal Council and a pillar of the community, or so he thought himself. He was not asleep at home with his family this night, he was off somewhere else with a bottle of gin. The Wife was an activist and a proud champion for her people, or so she thought herself. She was not tucked in bed sound asleep, she was away in her office fruitlessly trying to bury herself in all the work she had already completed hours ago.

    The Pale Thing was an abomination, a stain on her family, and not in any way Cheyenne. Or so they told her. She stayed up alone with her blanket wrapped as tightly around herself trying to fight off the Wyoming winter chill. Her hands clenched tightly together, as she silently prayed that the letter she had sent would be answered tonight. She had given it to her Gramma in hopes that she could deliver it for her, her Gramma being the only person to ever show her any form of love or warmth. Still, she was worried her Father was right and that Santa didn’t deliver presents to Pale Things no matter how nice they acted. Gramma told her that her Father was wrong and that she had a name. Her Father just scowled and went off to find more of his precious fire-water.

    Soon those prayers were answered by the sound of sleigh-bells and thunderous hooves stopping above her cold and dark home. Her Parents had no tree, but Gramma said that she didn’t need one to get presents. She saw a shower of lights shaped like snowflakes pouring in from the ceiling vent coalesce into a man with a big white beard in a big red coat. The man had a warm smile and a big hat cocked in a way that covered his left eye. In his hand was a shiny wrapped present, with a bow and everything!

    The man left it on her bed with a smile and a tip of his hat.

    “Merry Christmas, Winonah” was all he said before he flew back up the vent as that shower of light

    A big smile found itself on her face as she picked up the box and quickly stuffed it in her bag, she would open it next to her Gramma when she went to visit her tomorrow. With a heart full of joy and a smile on her face, Winonah Standing-Bear drifted off to sleep.




    These five children would never have known the Fates in store for them in the future, especially not on that Christmas morning but the gifts they received they would cherish always.

    Taylor would get a book about heroes both mythical and mundane throughout the ages, which her mother would help her read every night after till she was ten. Filling her thoughts with tales of heroism and adventure.

    Lily would find a DVD box set of Kamen Rider Kuuga, a show that would not find an official release for another half decade outside of low quality VHS bootlegs. Her parents, though surprised, eagerly watched the first two episodes right then and there, kicking off a love of tokusatsu and sowing the seeds of a dream of being able to inspire others the way that show did.

    Donnie opened up that gift alongside his father to find an Ibanez Les Paul within. A guitar that even with the wealth and resources of his family they could not quite get for whatever reason. Just like Adams once did, Donnie would practice till his fingers bled and would find a deep passion for music. A few days later he would find McCullough’s Music Shoppe and Instrument Repair picking up a case for his new guitar. Years later when he would settle down in Brockton Bay, it would be his favorite place in the world.

    Walt eventually opened that box, finding a matte black cattleman hat that was too large for him. He would grow into it several years later, but it did not stop him from wearing it all the while. He would wear it every chance he could since.

    Winonah Standing-Bear opened it while sitting by her Gramma’s side. Within it was the necessary paperwork her Gramma would need to file to formally adopt her. Soon after the court proceedings were dealt with, and Winonah walked with her head held high for once. To celebrate, her Gramma took her to see a friend of hers and to ride his horses while her Gramma played a game of her own with the man. This would be the day that she would meet one Walter Connolly and a friendship formed from him teaching her how to ride.

    Meanwhile, from his throne in Asgard, Odin smiled and knew that these five would achieve great things…

    Yeah, I had some free time in all the chaos and I managed to whip up this here Christmas special for you guys as my gift to you. Just something to bring some Christmas cheer by having Odin as Santa give people gifts...
    Taylor's gift was a pain in the ass to come up with, but I figured this could serve a good origin for why she wanted to be a hero so badly and why she admired heroes so much.
    Lily's family using a bonsai as a replacement christmas tree was inspired by my recollection of a Rugrats All Growed Up episode (I think it involved the kids moving the Finster's tree over to a classmates house who had some trouble getting things for Christmas, it was a long ass time ago I just thought the image of a bonsai as a Christmas tree was nice. Also bonsai can get pretty damn big if the person taking care of it puts an insane amount of TLC into it
    Donnie getting an Ibanez Les Paul was originally supposed to be him getting a signed copy of Carlos Santana's first album on vinyl but I don't think it'd have as much impact, I remember hearing a story about these lawsuit era Les Paul copies done by Ibanez being a huge hit. Why richer than most gods Adonis Rhodos not being able to find one is a thing? Maybe on Earth Aleph most of them were destroyed after the lawsuit?
    Walt's section was mostly to flesh out a bit of his home life and tell a short story about how he got his hat.
    This is the first time we ever see Winonah and it won't be the last. Yes she is the last member of the band, she will show up in two chapters.
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2020
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  14. Simonbob

    Simonbob Really? You don't say.

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    Merry Christmas, and to all a good night.
     
  15. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Merry Christmas!
     
  16. Extras: "When's the Next Update?" & Some Homebrew
    BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    First off, I would like to wish everybody here a very Happy New Year! We did it guys, it's 2021! We should probably check on those dudes down in the Sealab.

    I kid.

    In all seriousness, I'm posting this here to let you all know the progress of the story and what's affecting it.

    After putting it off for almost a decade I am finally taking my driver's test on the 15th of January, which means all my spare time will be me practicing for it and 2.4 won't be dropping until after I get my driver's license. That isn't to say I'm halting work on Band entirely; I've been taking the time to actually think ahead and on what will happen, who will throw spanners in the works of all the wannabe Legion of Doom and Bond Villains out there and why. Intrigue to hook Parahuman against Scion or Denizen, Parahumans actually getting off the back foot, and plots that would effect the both of them.

    I mean it also gives me time to peep the new books Onyx Path are putting out between now and then if they drop any.

    In the meantime, have some Homebrew;

    Zagreus from Hades, both versions of Kratos from God of War, and best doG Ammy.

    Theoi

    Zagreus, God of Blood.
    Callings: Liminal, Warrior, Trickster
    Purviews: Death, Epic Dexterity, Epic Stamina, Epic Strength, Journeys, Health (Blood)

    Kratos, The Ghost of Sparda
    God of War 1-3 (Plus Spinoffs)
    Callings: Warrior, Destroyer, Hunter
    Purviews: Chaos, Epic Strength, Epic Stamina, Fire, Passion (Rage), War

    God of War 4/Dad of Boy
    Callings: Warrior, Guardian, Hunter
    Purviews: Epic Strength, Epic Stamina, Fire, Frost, Journeys, Passion (Rage), War

    Kami

    Okami Amaterasu
    Callings: Guardian, Warrior, Trickster
    Purviews: Artistry (Painting), Beasts (Wolf), Epic Dexterity, Fertility, Journeys, Prosperity, Sun
     
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  17. Simonbob

    Simonbob Really? You don't say.

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    Good luck on the test!

    And remember, the examiner can't fail you if you kill them fast enough!
     
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  18. Miller At the Wash

    Miller At the Wash Versed in the lewd.

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    No no it doesn't work that way. I speak from personal experience, if the examiner doesn't survive to pass you it is assumed that you failed. Unfair right!

    No bribery is the true path to victory.
     
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  19. Threadmarks: Bend & Break 2.4
    BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Lily

    01/11/11
    I was in a tatami room, sitting in seiza for god knows how long. The shouji were slid open, giving me an unobstructed view of the palace’s grand gardens and the river of starlight that ran through it. While the garden itself was cultivated and planned, it was all done so around the river rather than the river being landscaping. Despite being able to see the countless stars of the night sky, the palace and the garden were illuminated by some strange light as if the sun were shining. Despite knowing that I have never been anywhere this beautiful in my life, it feels as though I have.

    The sight is literally breathtaking, my hand goes up to my mouth trying to stifle the gasp but the sight of silken sleeves makes it come out. I look down at myself; I was wearing some fancy kimono with lots of layers. I remember Baa-chan calling it jūnihitoe, twelve layers, and nobody wore it outside of plays about the Heian period or local culture festivals. The key difference between the ones I’ve seen in museums and the one I was wearing was its color pattern; while most kimono in this style tend to have multiple colors with fairly simple patterns, the dress I was wearing only had two colors, white and red, and the top layer had an extremely intricate sunbeam pattern on it. As I looked at the dress I spotted a woman only slightly taller than me in similar clothes next to me, also in seiza.

    Unlike me, the woman seemed almost comfortable in the position as if she was doing this her whole life. Given the fact that we were sitting somewhere out of an ukiyo-e print and she was wearing just as fancy a dress I was, it was a pretty safe assumption. She had a face that could easily make most dolled up cover girls weep in envy and hair as black as night that flowed almost all the way down to the floor. She didn’t wear a crown, but I knew this woman was royalty. Somehow. The woman was smiling, it was the kind of smile you put on when you’re trying to show people you’re trying to reassure people that things are OK. Her eyes told another story, it felt like there was nothing but sorrow and regret there.

    Excuse me, miss?” I said, trying to get her attention. “Are you ok?”

    The woman looked me in the eye, her smile growing a bit wider but her eyes still filled with regret.

    I will be.” was all she said, turning her gaze back out to the garden and holding out her left hand towards it.

    I turned to see what she was waiting for; glowing green light hopping from flower to flower towards us from far off towards the edge of the garden. With speed and grace, it landed on the woman’s open hand. I leaned towards the woman and that strange green light, and I was able to make out the silhouette of a small boy inside it. Yeah that really sounds famililar. Granted, I couldn’t for the life of me say why. As I stared somewhat dumbfounded at the boy in the light, he pulled out a really fancy looking mallet from somewhere that was twice his size. Before I could even react, the boy stumbled and then that mallet decided to become rather intimate with my face!




    When I opened my eyes, I wasn’t in that garden, there was no woman or tiny boy wreathed in green light, and I wasn’t wearing some old flashy kimono. I was back in my bedroom. Wearing sweats and a tank-top as pajamas and keeping my toes warm with the fluffiest pair of socks I owned. I sat up slowly, not really phased by a dream like that since I’ve had this dream before. This was the first time there was somebody else in the dream, though. The alarm clock on my nightstand read 1:11 AM, normally I’d just try and go back to sleep with how early it was in the nightmorning but between what happened yesterday and that weird dream I just couldn’t help but be awake.

    My family was rather fortunate, my parents owning a successful business in a city with a dying economy and a sky high crime rate without incident meant they could afford one of the safer and nicer neighborhoods towards the edge of the city proper. Just outside the original suburb neighborhoods near the docks, with larger houses with the same amount of bedrooms perfect for smack dab in the middle of the middle class families all from a time just before cookie-cutter homes made of crummy materials were the norm. Naturally this means the bedrooms were kinda big, even mine, of course you wouldn’t really think that if you saw it. My room was cluttered with cardboard boxes filled with props I’ve made, merch I’ve bought online, and then the desk that was the throne for my fairly beast computer set up. My walls were plastered with posters; Ultraman, Kamen Rider, Super Sentai, Metal Heroes, Gojira and a hell of a lot more covered about 90% of my wall. There were so many posters and so much clutter that I couldn’t even see the paint of the wall, pretty sure it was, like, light pink or something.

    Yeah, I’m kind of a toku nerd. There’s not many toku fans in the world my age though, capes coming along kind of sucked the audience away from that, then the Endbringers put the final nails in the coffin. Everything from after the 80’s was an Aleph import. Luckily I found a few good deals on Ebisu-Bay for big boxes of old ad posters that they printed too many of or just never got around to putting up. All for the low-low price of 376.95 USD.

    So expensively cheap…

    Still, no amount of reminiscing on my vast collection of geekery could really make me shake off how low I felt. Taylor was still in the hospital, she had barely gotten out of surgery and the doctors were already saying she was in a coma or something and that there was a chance she wasn’t going to wake up. All of that, hearing about how they found her, seeing Walt getting dragged off in handcuffs, all of it painted a pretty dire picture. I mean, I know I’ve only known Taylor and Walt for about a week and all but I felt like we had a thing going, a possibly maybe becoming friends thing. I don’t really have any to be honest. I’ve never really been any good at making friends, I mean I’m on good terms with a lot of my classmates but I don’t hang out with any of them, and no matter how I tried it just never really got anywhere beyond a cordial acquaintance-ship. Then I met Taylor, and I felt like it was the start of a real genuine friendship. I mean, it sounds really sappy when I put it in to words but I mean it. Even with Walt and Donnie it felt like, despite my god-nephew’s prickliness and Donnie’s Donnie-ness, that things were going along the same way with them.

    There had to be something I could do! Sitting around moping was going to get me nowhere. I reached over and grabbed the foam helmet off my nightstand. It was a costume piece I made for this Kuuga fan film I was working on, it started off as a thing I did for a school project but I just kept working on it more after I turned in the stuff I needed for the assignment.

    What do I do?” I asked the helmet, not really expecting an answer.

    You could start by not mopin’ ‘round there, kid!” and yet I got one, in perfect Japanese no less!

    I looked back down at the helmet, my eyes blinking three times in surprise, and slowly said

    Kuuga?”

    Down ‘ere!”

    I angled the mask out of my vision, seeing a small green light on my nigthstand. A green light with the silhouette of a boy waving at me. It was at that point I knew that it was time to go back to bed, so I scooted back in bed, lied back down, and closed my eyes.

    No more weird dreams tonight…” was my vocalized hope that this was the part of the dream I would show up to class with none of my assignments done and unable to be going to a nebulous prom with a nebulous dream boy.

    I heard a small twing sound and felt a light tap on my chest, knowing full well what that mean I tried to to cocoon myself into maximum comfort even further but couldn’t quite get there as I did not have that many pillows or layers of blanket. Then came the light tap slap tap on my cheek.

    Now, now, now!” the green glowy boy said, I think he was from Kansai cause he had the accent going “Destiny’s a knockin’ and it’s got a batterin’ ram!”

    I shot up as hard as I could, launching the boy in the light across my bed. He was pretty nimble, tumbling through the air like some kind of super circuis flea, and landed on one of my bedposts in a handstand. He front flipped back to his feet and gave a tiny bow.

    I let out a very heavy sigh before asking “Why is there a tiny glowing green cape in my house?”

    I ain’t no Starborn, kid!” he said from his perch “Just blessedly tiny!”

    I had to ask “Starborn?”

    Our word for Parahuman-” He said with a dismissing wave “-it’ll make sense later.”

    Rather than try and ask him to elaborate I just cut to the chase;

    OK then, why is a blessedly tiny glowing green guy in my house?”

    Now I do believe I just said that ‘destiny is a knockin’ and somethin’ ‘bout a batterin’ ram?” Glowy Boy hopped right where my knees were. “It’s time for you to claim your Birthright.”

    I rolled my eyes at him and poked him in his gut, he caught hold of my finger as it came in

    Listen, Glowy Boy. I don’t know your name and what the hell do you mean Birthright?”

    Glowy boy harrumphed and took a step back

    I ain’t a boy, I’m a man! I am the great Issun-Boshi!” he said triumphantly, doing a very flamboyant and bombastic mie pose before pointing at me. “Vargas Lily, you are far more than what you seem and your Birthright is the key to realizing it!”

    Ah, that solves that mystery. Glowy Boy here is a fairy tale character. I don’t know if it was the desire to be able to help Walt and Taylor in some way, but something in my gut was telling me that he was legit and that I could trust him. Not to mention, it kinda felt like I’ve. Now I know that sounds concerning, what with there being mind controlling capes out there, but this wasn’t sudden and in your face. This was like a mental version of muscle memory, that’d be the best way to put in words. Like a memory that you forgot you had until you see something that jogs it. In this case, the feeling I got from this was an “Oh you…” kind of feeling. Like interacting with a moron that grew on you.

    OK.” I said, deciding to take the plunge and see where this rabbit hole takes me “So where is this Birthright, Issun-Baka?”

    Issun just laughed and hopped up to my windowsill, cocking his head outside. “Get dressed and grab your bike, it’s at an old friend’s place here in town.”

    Again, red flags to most. Not to me. Still don’t know why, or why I know this isn’t some weird Master shit going on. Besides, I do Kyokushin and I’m a beast, short of running into a Cape or dudes with guns I’m pretty sure I can whup anyone’s ass. So I threw on some track pants over my sweats, put on my lucky RX shirt, and my parka. Issun decided to hop into my parka hood for the ride. Now, rather than hopping two stories down and leaving my window open, I did the far more difficult but not impossible thing of sneaking through the hallway, down the stairs then straight shot through the garage and out the side door. Despite the fact that my parents are heavy sleepers, I didn’t push my luck and made sure to avoid the creaky floorboards and steps. If this were a movie, I’d whip off the tarp over my bike and amaze my tiny partner with my bike all dramatically. Sadly this isn’t a movie and my bike was just out and about leaning up against the sound equipment my dad rents out to people in one of his side hustles.

    Nice ride.” Issun said, admiring the paint job.

    I had put in quite a bit of work on my bike; toppest of the line in affordable parts, after market additions such as a pair of headlights with synced tail light, a custom made windshield, a moped conversion with a few tweaks from a gearhead friend of the family, and of course a custom paint job, all done to be evocative of the New Cyclone from the original Kamen Rider! I call it; Chibi Cyclone! It took me two years and almost all of my allowance but hot damn was it worth it! I would have had it in six months, but there was merch to be bought.

    So expensively cheap…

    I made sure not to knock anything over, ding my dad’s Chrysler, or disturb the recyclables as I went out the side door. I also triple checked to make sure I locked the door and I did not start the engine until I was way out of earshot of the house. From there, I went full throttle into the city while Issun called directions leading us into the heart of Asia-Town. Dumb name, I know, but it used to be Chinatown way back when, Koreans fleeing Japanese occupation came in, then the Hmong Diaspora happened, and then Leviathan happened and a bunch of Japanese refugees came in. Contrary to popular belief Asians don’t really get along with each other and for good reason, so every one of those groups kinda segregated themselves into their own little corner of this part of town, each with their own cute little nicknames. So for shorthand they just call it Asia-Town. Which meant I knew exactly where we were going now; Little Fukuoka. This is where all those Japanese refugees came in post Kyushu sinking, or at least the ones that made it all the way to the east coast. Of course, that was then and this is now. I can gun it for hours there without seeing another person, not even homeless people. Barely anybody lives here or works here anymore, most of the buildings are for sale or lease, and all of those are boarded up. Now in this town, you’d think it was because of some cape based tragedy or freak accident. You’d be pleasantly surprised.

    See what a lot of people don’t really notice about Japan’s economy is that it has one of the strongest domestic markets ever; comparatively very little import, but a lot of export. Yes the export market almost completely died after Leviathan, but what grew was the domestic market and Japan’s economic self sufficiency and self reliance. There was a massive push in PSAs, policy, local movements, etc, to get Japan back on its feet. This social push, a few breakthroughs in non tinkertech robotics, medicine, energy production, things like that, led to a rekindled sense of Yamato-Gokoro. More people got married, the birthrate that was nosediving skyrocketed back to stability, the economy was better than it was during The Bubble. Loads of economists and politicians got spooked, thinking it was gonna be a second Bubble but its plateaued and became stable. Then people started heading back home, towns and ghettos like Little Fukuoka dried up and became ghost towns within weeks. All of that within the span of a decade. Some people thought it was the work of Thinkers and Tinkers behind the scenes, others thought it was going to attract another Endbringer attack in retaliation for their hubris. Well, ten years, no Endbringer or bump and dump crash into a super depression later says otherwise. My parents and I visit my mom’s side of the family every year to visit around Christmas time.

    Of course that still does not explain why the ABB haven’t moved in, why the Empire haven’t burned it down, or why the Merchants haven’t tried to make this place dirty and busted on top of empty. Maybe people think it’s cursed?

    Eventually, Issun finally said “We’re here.”

    Issun’s directions led me down some alleyways and eventually into what looked like the entrance to some kind of shared back lot hidden by some more boarded up businesses. Somehow I knew that if I left my bike unattended here, it’d still be there when I got back, so I just put the kickstand up and left it by the gate. When I opened the gate I was greeted by a sight I never thought possible in Brockton Bay; a full size Shinto shrine and well cared for. The fence and the rooftops of the buildings around me had hidden the torii gates, and I doubt anybody who didn’t already come to the place really would know to look here. A hidden shrine in Brockton Bay, crazy.

    Issun hopped out of my hoodie and bounced around until he landed on a stone lamp by the torii, taking the moment to bow towards it.

    Do you remember what to do here, kiddo?”

    I just nodded yes and bowed. Issun bounded forward and I followed at a walk, making sure to walk along the left side of the stone path in front of me. As I stepped through the torii’s archway, things changed. The air became crisper, the sky became clearer, and a strange and familiar sensation that I could not for the life of me describe washed over me. I made my way to the chozuya and used the ladle, gathering the water from the water flowing down into the basin and not the basin itself, to rinse my hands, mouth, spitting the water down at my feet, and then letting the remaining water drip down the handle. I made my way to the offering box, bowed, and dropped in a five yen coin I had left from my last trip to Japan. As I walked up to the main building, the haiden, I wondered who maintained the grounds and if there were actual miko and shinshoku that ran the shrine, I also was curious to who was enshrined here. When I got to the steps of the haiden, I rung the shrine bell, feeling the sound travel to the edges of the grounds and back. I looked around in shock, looking at Issun who paid it no mind and was in the middle of his own run of the ritual. I bowed as deep as I could twice, put my hand in prayer position, clapped twice, then uttered a silent prayer for Taylor’s recovery and bowed one last time longer than the last. As soon as I rose back to standing, the doors of the haiden slowly opened on their own, showing a gentle light coming from inside along with incense filling the air.

    That’s our cue.” Issun said as he hopped inside.

    When I walked inside and took off my shoes, that odd familiar feeling just grew. I followed Issun into a gathering hall, sitting on a cushion was a very beautiful Japanese woman in the prettiest kimono I had ever seen. As soon as she saw me, she broke out into a very excited smile, waved and then got up with her arms out wide. Before I could react I was being smothered by her rather large…

    tracts of land.

    It’s been so long! You’re so tiny now!” She shouted as I struggled for air “I’m so glad you’re here, you have to tell me everything you’ve been up to!”

    I managed to break free and my lungs once again knew the sweet taste of air

    Whoa, whoa, whoa!” I said, frantically waving my arms between me and her “Lady, I have no clue who you are and you’re supposed to at least say your name before you start acting like you know somebody!”

    The woman giggled and sat back down on her cushion and motioned me to do the same. “We actually have already met before.”

    The woman clapped and someone dressed up as a kuroko came by with a jar of sake and three bowls to pour it in. The kuroko poured the steaming sake into all three bowls then left.

    You want some?” the woman offered as Issun rifled through his robes for something.

    No thanks, I’m kinda straight edge on account of being underage. What do you mean we met before?”

    The woman loosened up her kimono a bit then downed her sake out of the bowl, some of it spilling out of the bowl and down her neck into her…

    tracts of land

    The woman sighed wistfully then gave me a look that I couldn’t help but feel nostalgia for.

    I was a part of that massive rager we threw all those years ago when you were in that sulking session of yours, danced a merry jig?”

    I wanted to say that I had no idea, but something came to me. Something that stopped those words from leaving my lips. Then a name found its way in my head, this woman’s name. I couldn’t stop myself from whispering it “Uzume-chan…”

    This woman, was the goddess Ame-No-Uzume. The Kami of Revelry. A million thoughts danced around my head, a million memories that didn’t make sense. As I tried to make sense of it all, Uzume clapped and smiled widely, eyes dancing with excitement.

    You’re remembering!” She squealed. “I figured you would when you came here!”

    I looked over to Issun, sipping from the sake bowl through a coffee stirrer and paying no mind to the excited goddess.

    What the hell is going on?” I said slowly, hoping he would answer me.

    Issun stopped sipping sake and stifled a belch. “I’m gonna cut the suspense; you’re a goddess Lily.”

    I-I’m a what?” was all I could say, Uzume whistled a familiar tune. I didn’t appreciate the joke so I glared at her, like I did when she was distracting court. Another memory I shouldn’t have.

    Uzume just chuckled and pointed at me “That’s the look! It’s good to see you again Amaterasu-chan!”

    My old name. From before. My true name.

    I’m not a goddess, and I’m not Amaterasu.” I tried to deny it, but I knew it was true. “I’m just Lily Vargas, regular American girl.”

    Uzume just scooted over to me and poked me where my heart should be. “You. Are. Amaterasu. Reborn.” every word punctuated by poke.

    Issun decided now was the time to chime in.

    It was kind of a pain in the rear finding you, kid” he said after another sip

    Uzume continued as Issun drank fully from his sake bowl.

    I’m not surprised that you didn’t tell everybody in Takamagahara that you were going to do this, I was surprised when I found out that Susano-oo and Kuromizuhime were the ones you did tell.”

    No sudden surge of memory came with that little revelation. I had to ask.

    What do you mean?”

    Uzume leaned back, taking a swig of sake straight out of the jar before responding.

    Well, one day you just locked yourself into your chambers and didn’t talk to anybody. Was quite a long while before you had a servant girl bring that brother of yours and his firstborn over to speak with you in person. None of us knew what you said to them, only thing we got out of that was when Susan-oo gave the court a letter you wrote saying that you’d be indisposed until further notice. We asked them what happened in there and all that idiot brother of yours said was ‘oh just talking about the weather’ like he was being honest, and his kid just left saying that you had given her your blessing to go off and marry that Greek paramour of hers. Some time later we checked your room, door was unlocked, and there we find your body fading. We cornered your brother and he fessed up; you decided to sever yourself from your Mantle of Divinity and be reborn as a mortal.”

    Uzume pointed at me and said “an American hafu named Lily Vargas.”
    I didn’t deny it, or lie, or try to delude myself. I knew deep in my heart she was telling the truth. No use running from it. I just let out a sigh and asked “So what happens now?”


    Uzume just smiled and said “Well now it’s time for a belated birthday gift.”

    Once again, Uzume clapped and this time two kuroko appeared form a hallway carrying an antique lacquerware box, bigger than the ones I’ve seen. Issun and Uzume urged me to open it. When I did, I was greeted by two very familiar things and one new thing.

    A compact mirror, a jade magatama with a beautiful inro to carry it in, and a brass belt buckle with an embossed japanese rising sun. I could feel the power inside those relics as I touched them. The magatama was carved and polished jade, gifted to me as a mark of my authority to lead the Kami, was the Yasakani no Magatama.. The compact mirror was made from a shard of the Yata no Kagami; one day it was destroyed to expel a great evil that was corrupting it. The mirror was restored by a kintsukuroi master but he forgot one of the shards mid restoration, leaving a somewhat large section of the mirror filled in with gold dust lacquer and the remaining piece being fitted into the compact in front of me tonight. Though the craftsman didn’t intend for it, the mirror would be a reminder of my failings. Failings that I don’t remember the details of, but know were my own fault and really bad. Regardless, I treasured the mirror’s restored form then and I will treasure it now and forever. Two thirds of the Imperial Regalia, the old memories and feelings made me shed a single tear.

    You alright kid?” Issun asked me, I didn’t notice when he hopped up onto the box.

    Yeah.” I told him “Mirror just brought out old memories, I guess.”

    I put the compact in my pocket and did the same with the magatama after putting it inside the inro. I held up the belt buckle, not recognizing it at all.

    Whats the deal with this one?” I asked Uzume.

    Well, after we found you down here we had this one made with your curent sensibilities in mind.” she said with a friendly grin

    Put it on and do your best Takeshi Hongo impression!” Issun told me, bringing a smile to my face.

    I put the belt buckle up to my waistband, feeling a sense power rush through me and feeling a belt materialize around me. Then, I started the pose; Throw your right arm at diagonally to the right, then rotate it clockwise until it’s diagonal to your left, retract it to your waist, thrust out your left arm at a diagonal to your right, then shout;

    Henshin!”

    I felt armor and a helmet form around me in a flash of light, the flash didn’t blind me and the only reason I knew it happened was seeing the room get brighter for a split second. Despite feeling the full suit on me, my vision and range of motion was completely free and my actual clothes just seemed to give way to the suit without being uncomfortable or weird. I looked down to my arms and saw them covered by leather like sleeves and gloves. Uzume clapped and a pair of kuroko, probably the same pair from earlier, brought in a body length mirror for me to check myself out.

    The armor seemed to be based on the Ichigou suit from the Kamen Rider reboot movies. Instead of the blue and black scheme from The First or the dark green and black scheme from The Next the gloves, boots, shoulder pad cap-thingies, and chest piece were white, the stripes running down the sides of the sleeves, body, and pant legs were red. There wasn’t a red scarf, it was replace by a white fur lining kind of like a bomber jacket’s collar. Turning around to see my back, the wing like patterns were instead the Japanese rising sun. Then there was the helmet; instead of being grasshopper like it had the silhouette of a wolf’s head, ears included, in white with the eyes being red.

    Issun hopped up on to my left shoulder and let out a punny wolf whistle.

    Lookin’ good…” he said while Uzume clapped excitedly

    That belt houses the Celestial Wolf Armor, a fitting raiment for battle needs to look heroic right?”

    How’s it feel kid?” Issun said to me as I stared at my reflection.

    It feels right.” was all I needed to say.

    I knew instinctively that all I needed to do to power down was to simply will it away, and I did. I knew it the same way I knew that I could scry people I had a trace of with the mirror and that the magatama was a symbol of my divine providence and through it I could channel my divine essence to bring order and grant prosperity. A full fledged goddess wouldn’t need to use those relics, but being reborn as a mortal Scion meant that I would regain that kind of power with time.

    So what happens now?” I asked Uzume “What am I supposed to do with all of this?

    Uzume hugged me and said “That’s up to you to decide.”

    There’s only one last thing before you can go!” Issun said from my shoulder. He pulled a small mallet on twine out of his robes and tossed it to my right hand. It was a mallet shaped phone charm. “Give that a good shake whenever you need advice from ‘lil ‘ol me! From now on, I’m your personal guide to the weird world of supernatural shit!”

    With that, Issun pulled out the mallet he beaned me with in that dream, gave it a shake, and disappeared.


    I may not know what I was going to do tomorrow, but I did know what I was going to do today.

    There’s someplace I have to be.” I told Uzume who just tightened her hug before letting me go and saying goodbye.

    With that I walked out of the shrine, put on my shoes, then left down the middle of the path. I got back on Chibi Cyclone and gunned it to Brockton Bay General. As soon as I got there and chained up my bike, I called home on my cell until my parents answered. Needless to say they were pretty shocked to wake up to me telling them I had snuck out and gone to the hospital. They kinda figured why I was there, mom was understanding and dad said that he’d call the school and say I was out sick. They also read me the riot act and told me they were disappointed that I’d do something like this, but they said they wouldn’t punish me this time so long as I didn’t make a habit of it.

    I made my way to Taylor’s hospital room, Taylor was still unconscious but she wasn’t on an oxygen mask anymore, her dad was praying. I took a step forward, Mr. Hebert hearing my foot hit the tile and looking over to me with red and tear filled eyes.

    You’re one of Taylor’s friends from the music shop…” he said “Do your parents know you’re out this late?”

    They do.” I said, trying to give him a reassuring look. “They also know I snuck out to be here.”

    I put a hand on his shoulder before he could say anything.

    Go home Mr. H” I told him “Get some rest, you’ll need it when she wakes up.”

    No…” he said “I can’t leave her…”

    You need your strength, go home and get some sleep, you’ll need it for when she wakes up. I’ll watch over her until you come back.”

    Mr. Hebert nodded his head before leaning over to Taylor and giving her a kiss on her forehead. I took his seat as he left and held Taylor’s hand. I felt the power of the sun within me, and hoped that I could give some of its warmth wherever Taylor was in that coma.

    As her EKG beeped along, I swore;

    I’ll find who did this and I will bring them to justice, Taylor.”
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2021
  20. Assblaster5000

    Assblaster5000 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Well then! That's... actually that isn't the strangest thing I've ever seen come out of a Worm fanfic. Neat though.
     
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  21. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Yeah. It took me a while, hope people like it.
     
  22. Overlordkelton

    Overlordkelton Your first time is always over so quickly, isn't it?

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    I don't get this fic? Can someone do a summary and a recap with the appropriate explanation for someone as dumb like me.
     
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  23. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    What part don't you get?
     
  24. Overlordkelton

    Overlordkelton Your first time is always over so quickly, isn't it?

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    Pretty much piece of everything. I mean who's scion in the title? What is Walt's real identity. Powers etc. The guy who ended nilbog with what seems to be a sword from the lady of the lake. And the guy who hacked pho. Pretty much everything. I don't get much of the setting either.
     
  25. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Scion is a tabletop RPG where you play as demigods, known as Scions, in the modern day. Heavily inspired by American Gods by Neil Gaiman. Percy Jackson is also an inspiration

    Walt is an OC. I wrote him up as a Scion character. His current powers will be revealed in full once he meets with his parents again.

    Also an oc and youre on the money.

    A Demigod tier OC.

    By nature of Scion bejng a tabletop RPG, a lot of the Scions and Denizens we will meet are OC. The setting we will get into as we go. For now, think of it like Percy Jackson but with ALL the gods not just the Greeks and theyre starting to come out of the woodwork for reasosn we will get into later.
     
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  26. Extras: Lily's Character Sheet + Expanded Relics
    BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    THIS! Is the character sheet with which I used to determine the capabilities of the starting out characters of Band!

    This sheet is Lily's, as she has completed her Visitation, and thus is the first relevant character for me to reveal her base sheet. Please note this is a fan made, printer friendly, sheet for second edition that I cannot for the life of me remember where I DL'ed it or who made it (IF ANY OF YOU KNOW PLEASE TELL ME AND I WILL EDIT THIS TO GIVE PROPER CREDIT)

    So after I wrote the outline for each character of the as of yet unnamed Band, I used the chargen rules from Scion 2nd Edition; Hero to make every member of the Band (minus Taylor because she's a canon character and I'd just class her as a DMPC with super plot relevance.). This is an almost complete character sheet; the proper amount of Health boxes have not been marked, Deeds are shit you do that you get XP for and if you complete all three you move up a point of Legend, she doesn't have any Fatebindings (yet), and her Birthrights needed a separate notepad file to write what they do in proper detail beyond the ant size space of those boxes and they WILL be featured further down this text post.

    [​IMG]

    This here is Page 1

    Let's start with Skills & Attributes. Rated from 0 (Being a chance die roll and thus a lower chance of success) to 5 (being the peak of mortal human abiliity without magical/divine enhancement, which Scions can go past once they hit Demigod) with the dot rating equal to how many dice you roll when using that skill or attribute. A proper dice roll is skill+attribute with the goal to get as many successes as you can. Now you may be wondering, how in the hell does a 14 Year Old girl have almost master level athletics and close combat and the strength of a man twice her size and then some. Usually Scion characters are made to be about in their late teens/early twenties in Origin, I just used the same rules and handwave it as "Being a Scion means you have an easier time reaching above than mortals" The words on the underline of each skill are the Skill Specialty, you can get these once you hit a skill rating of 3. You can add a specialty to add a +1 Enhacement to your roll when you use that skill in that way, Enhancement giving you an additional Success if you succeed at least once (thus allowing you to activate knacks, inflict injuries, crit, etc). Being a girl who wants to make her own Tokusatsu, she picked up martial arts and is in the best shape of her life. So her Athletics and Close Combat (it's your melee skill) specialties are Acrobatic Tricks and Hand-To-Hand respectively. Her Integrity specialty being her Pure Heart (deflecting temptation by being a "pure and sweet maiden") and her Leadership specialty being Team Building Excercises, because godammit I couldn't get the idea of motivational speaker Amaterasu teaching people how to properly work together out of my head. Specialties can be as specific or as vague as your Storyteller/DM will allow you.

    Legend, the stuff that Scions run off of. Concentrated memetic badassery. With each point of legend comes a legendary title; you use these to make your action a Feat of Scale (upping the Scale of which you do things by one) by spending legend. Your Legendary Title goes off one of your Callings (which we will get to that in a bit) and thus must be made with keywords associated with them, in this case her first legendary title "The Sun's Justice & Mercy" comes from her Judge calling.

    Paths are divvied into three; Origin (What you were), Role (What you are), Pantheon (What you are to your Pantheon/What you want to be to your Pantheon). Paths are how you get some of your skills in chargen (hence why they have skills in parentheses by their name. You also get whatever is relevant to your character through your paths and invoking them, working with your Storyteller to see what that actually means.

    The Virtue Track, basically you can up your roles by sliding towards one way or the other on the virtue track and also risking being overtaken by that virtue and making yourself one dimensional. Lily being a Kami has the virtues of Sincerity and Right Action. The balancing act of being genuine and doing the right thing.

    Here be Page 2

    [​IMG]

    Callings, these bad boys are how you get your Knacks (Demigod Perks/Skills). You must choose one from your Divine Parent/Patron/Former Self and then you may choose any other two you want (at chargen when making a Hero, Origin tier get watered down Callings and they only can have one calling and it must be the one from their Patron/Parent). You can have up to your Calling Dots in Knacks from that calling, Heroic Knacks "costing" one Calling dot and Immortal Knacks "costing" two. The amount of dots in a calling determines how many keywords should be in a Legendary Title. Her title being rooted in the Judge Calling those words were "Justice" and "Mercy". Let's go Knack by Knack

    • Good Listener: By nature of being easy to talk to and friendly enough to vent to, you can glean relevant information from people. (When talking to DMPCs you can figure out if they have anything relevant to what you're looking for via conversation so long as they know it)
    • Indisputable Analysis: You get super investigation visualization skills, now you can roleplay your favorite evening cop show character! (in game you roll to determine the enhancement bonus you get to investigating a scene)
    • Quick Study: You have sherlock holmes level observational investigation powers (in game; halve the time you need to make a complete clue collection in a scene)
    • Army of One: Exactly what you think it means (In Game; receive no penalty for fighting outnumbered, gain enhancement based on your Legend to all attacks so long as there are more enemies than you are facing/there are members of your party)
    Now on to the good shit; Purviews, divine powers. Gives you an innate power just for having access to it and allows you to spend Legend to do Marvels (miracles/magic relevant to the purview) or use a Boon (rather than the free form of a Marvel, do essentially a spell with that Purview). IN vanilla, you get two boons at chargen period. My gaming group house rules it so that you get all of your pantheon's Signature purview's boons and you may take two of the three boons from your innate purview for free. Still leaving you with two boons from any of your other purviews.

    • Yaoyorozu no Kami is the Signature Purview of the Kami of Japan. It allows their scions to communicate with the kami of objects and thus get them to tell you things or do things for you. Its boons; Appeasing the Kami allows you to schmooze the kami into being better at its job for you and yours while making it uncooperative for anyone you don't want using its using it. The Watchful Spirit allows you to have an object kami play lookout/watchdog for you. Innate Ability; you can speak to the Kami within objects.
    • The Sun Purview. Gives you the power of the sun. Doesn't matter if its the sun as a life giver, a source of heat, or the symbolism of it such as the morning light meaning hope for a new day. Hope Reborn channels the symbolism of the sun to make people see you as a possible solution to their problems thus granting an Enhancement for when you try to figure those out or (if you're an asshole) use them as leverage in influence. Penetrating Glare adds Enhancement when you roll to cut through lies, confusion, illusions, or any other deception. Innate Abilities; you can radiate an aura of sunlight that pierces darkness up to long range as a reflex, spending legend makes the light more radiant and imposes penalties on rolls to attack you or your allies.
    • Epic Stamina. This is the kind of tankiness you expect from Demigods, you can now facetank things you shouldn't. Adamant body gives you natural armor and makes you resistant against a specific type of damage determined by you when you activate the Boon. Innate Abilities: immunity to mundane poison and disease and never risk dying of hunger, thirst, or exhaustion
    • Epic Strength. Remember Hercules? He had this one. Pistons for Fists make you hit so hard you knock people prone or send them flying backwards also, Mooks and Jobbers become Dynasty Warriors enemies and thus you can take out Mooks/Jobbers all at once with your attacks rather than going at it one at a time if you so choose. Innate Abilities: your scale goes up by one for the purposes of lifting/carrying/breaking objects you can also use the Might attribute in place of Presence to intimidate, seduce, or make friends.
    • Order. Supernatural Authority over society and civilization. Innate Abilities: Law sense, allowing you to determine if any action you witness or think about doing is legal, accurately. Also mortal, non blessed, normal law enforcement is physically unable to taking action against you for doing something that is lawful nor can they overreach the bounds of authority. Why? Because, and I quote, "their body betrays them in the face of true justice"
    • Propserity. You control the prosperity of people and cities thus allowing to bless people with good monetary fortune (wether it be good investment or just an influx of high paying customers) or rescind it. Innate Abilities: by flexing your wealth to influence someone, you can make them like you a bit more. Lily will NEVER use this.
    BIRTHRIGHTS! THE MAGICAL AND DIVINE GIFTS BESTOWED UPON SCIONS TO GRANT THEM THE MEANS TO CHANNEL THEIR DIVINE MIGHT! Now I believe I mentioned exactly what the statblocks here mean in my Relic Creation post earlier, its threadmarked in the Informational tab for those curious. Here are the statblocks for those Birthrights;

    Issun-Boshi
    Guide & Retainer

    Guide Traits (Rating: 1)
    Asset Skills: Close Combat
    Benefits/Invocation: Issun is quite the spry little thing and knows the best way to take on opponents larger than yourself!
    Guide Stunt: (1-3s) Gain Enhancement equal to successes spent on the next roll you make to attack, defend, or evade an opponent of a larger Scale of Size than yourself.

    Celestial Wolf Armor
    Henshin Hero's Garb

    Relic Traits (Rating: 4)
    Purviews: Epic Strength, Epic Stamina
    Motif: With the strength and fortitude to face any evil
    Knack: Henshin!
    The Armor can be summoned and dismissed from the belt buckle

    Armor Traits
    Armored: Hard (1), Resistant (Bulletproof) (2)

    Yata no Kagami Compact
    Compact Mirror

    Relic Traits (Rating: 2)
    Knack: Scry
    The Mirror allows for remote viewing of any person on The World so long as the user can properly visualize their targe and/or has something of their target's, Rating: Imbue 1 Legend

    Yasakani no Magatama
    Jade Jewel Bead Necklace

    Relic Traits (Rating: 4)
    Purviews: Order, Prosperity
    Motif: By the grace of the Kami do I claim the right to lead.

    And that, ladies and gentlemen, is Lily Vargas as a scion complete with almost done character sheet. Lemme know what you think, lemme know what you thought of 2.4, hell lemme know if you would prefer I don't make another post like this again and just stick to prose. Your feedback helps drive me and drives the story.
     
  27. Ajlove

    Ajlove Not too sore, are you?

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    Love it!
     
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  28. BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    ...

    Anything pop out at you in particular?
     
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  29. Threadmarks: Bend & Break 2.5
    BrotherMouse518

    BrotherMouse518 Spastic Mouse

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    Lily

    01/11/11​

    “Lily?”

    I turned my head away from Taylor and to the woman who called my name. Despite not recognizing her face, I recognized her voice. My godmother, Saoirse McCullough, was standing next to a man with bright red hair and concerned eyes, he looked like a young Finn McCullough. Rather than the seasoned pair of fellow denizens of the Champion’s District, they looked like they were in the prime of their lives. Seeing as how the past day or so have been kinda hectic and weird, I wasn’t really surprised.

    “Shouldn’t you be in school, young lady?” asked Young Finn, looking really weird with his outdated fashion sense and newfound youth. I mean, he rocked it, don’t get me wrong but it’s kind of weird seeing someone dress like they just came off some old movie set.

    “I snuck out and came here. I called my parents when I parked my bike at around-” I looked over to the hospital room clock, the hands read 9:32. “-2:30ish. I had to come…”

    Young Finn and Young Saoirse looked concerned, same mannerisms as they had when they were old folks kinda confirmed that I’m just seeing them as they are rather than the illusion that made them look old or whatever.

    “Mr. Hebert was here.” I told them, letting out a sigh and slouching in the uncomfy seat some more “He looked exhausted so I told him to get some rest.”

    Young Saoirse moved over and took the seat to my right, Young Finn brought a chair from the corner underneath the TV and gently set it down on my left, sitting down on it. Saoirse gave me a hug and I laid my head on her shoulder, Finn gave my shoulder a firm and comforting squeeze.

    “Poor dear, been here for seven hours!” she said trying to hug me as tight as possible “You must be exhausted yourself.”

    Truth be told, I wasn’t. Three hours of sleep, haven’t eaten since lunch yesterday, my Visitation (is it really a visitation if you have to bike your way there and its technically you incarnate as a mortal reawakening your memories as a goddess or is it called something else?) and then coming here would have laid me out. I don’t even think I’d be able to force myself awake normally, even now as a Scion. I know it isn’t the mirror or magatama’s power, it’s almost instinctive but I feel like it’s the armor within the belt’s power.

    “I’m fine.” was all I could say, Saoirse hugged me a little tighter and Finn gave me a pat on the back.

    “How is she?” Saoirse asked me

    I explained to her what I had heard from the doctors and nurses that came through a few hours ago; her condition was stabilizing, she was healing a little faster than expected but nothing unnatural, no infections which was practically a miracle, and they may be able to take her off the breathing tube-thing soon, but since she hasn’t woke up yet they’re gonna do a CT scan some time later today or tomorrow and maybe see if they can pull that healing cape girl from New Wave over.

    I never bothered learning cape names, just their general power plus gimmick. I didn’t really find them interesting or intimidating when I was an unaware Scion and now that I’m what I am even less interested and even more unintimidated. Unless it’s Clockblocker (because how the hell do you not remember a name like that?) or Mouse Protector (who is a treasure and if anything were to happen to her I would use my reawakened goddess-ness to smite the monster that would dare strip the world of a shining light)

    “How’s Walt?” I asked after I took a moment.

    Finn let out a frustrated sigh “He’ll be in juvenile hall ‘till his court date tomorrow, Donnie paid for a lawyer out of his own pocket and told us that he should be released and have the charges dropped on the state’s Good Samaritan law but the juvenile prosecutor is, and I quote, a “hardass with a mean streak a mile wide and a burning hatred for children and adolescents” and is taking it to the judge.

    I know that my hometown is a rough and tumble place with a crime rate and amount of dirty cops and judges rivaling Chicago’s historic records but I also knew for a fact that no judge in this city would be dumb enough to let an assault and battery charge stand and waste the court’s time. Just like I knew it was the Magatama’s power helping me remember that.

    We sat in silence for a while, Taylor’s EKG beeping along steadily.

    “Relieving Daniel was a good move. We were mighty surprised when we saw his old truck in his driveway.” Finn said, breaking the silence. “Saoirse and I went to see him before we came here. He seemed to be holding up a lot better than you’d expect…”

    Finn trailed off and took a deep breath before getting back to it

    “He said that Doreen and Eric, Walt’s parent’s, had came and spoke to him in his dreams.” Finn’s eyes got a little watery, but his voice didn’t change “They told him that it wasn’t Taylor’s time, he just had to have faith…”

    He smiled nostalgically, Saoirse chuckled

    “…and then Eric told him ‘don’t forget a helluva lot of patience’ then he said Eric gave him a punch to the face and woke him up!”

    I was a bit confused at that and raised my hand a bit

    “Let’s just say that’s how we knew for sure it was our dear son-in-law talking.” Saoirse helpfully said.

    I lowered my hand and just nodded.

    “Still. I don’t know if it really was Eric and Doreen themselves or just Daniel’s own hopes, but I’m inclined to believe that dream of his.” Finn said giving me a hopeful look, one I returned with a smile. “Now you should be heading home, you are officially relieved.”`

    I gave him a salute and a smile, one he returned and Saoirse gave me a wave goodbye. I told Taylor goodbye as well and made my way to the elevator. When I hit the call button, the elevator was all the way to the top floor, giving me plenty of time to think about my next move. That girl that Walt mentioned could be a lead, find her and then find her accomplices. My house is within riding distance of the McCullough’s house, which is right next door to the Hebert’s. None of us talked about school during our little hang out at the music shop, but if Walt and Taylor live near me then that means they are in my school district. The district I’m in, if I remember it right, is the West Brockton Unified School District. There are five schools in the district, and of those five there are only two that will take new students year-round; Whipple High School which is underpopulated with students for some reason, and Winslow High School which is a notorious example of the worst that you can get in American education outside of Chicago and will take anybody regardless of if they even have the resources for some damn reason.

    If Winslow was like my school then they would have the students fill out incident reports for the school administrators to give to a resource officer or a disciplinarian or something. I know that Winslow is a shit hole but it’s not like they can just tell them to fuck off. It was better than standing around and Winslow was on the way home. Besides, I still have plenty of gas in Chibi Cyclone’s tank! The elevator opened up and I walked in, feeling like Shotaro Hidari sans the fedora or twinkish partner. Well, if Donnie was with me I guess he could be my twinkish partner but he doesn’t have the features for it, personality on the other hand…

    The elevator’s ding and the doors opening brought me out of my thoughts of Donnie in Phillip cosplay and how ridiculous he’d look. In walked a face that I swear I had seen before but couldn’t quite place, a face almost obscured by the hood of her white robe. Brownish hair, smattering of freckles, kind of on the thicker side of average and bringing back some memories of my past life all involving onsen trips that I was desperately trying to not think about as I didn’t need visions of the various plots and tracts of land belonging to the ladies of the court in my head right now as I am a good and pure kind of christian maiden with pure intentions and thoughts and most certainly have not read some explicit doujins of anime boys and many Kamen Riders, nor have I indulged in the unsolicited writing of fan works that have been posted on the internet to be disseminated to fellow degenerates.

    Nope.

    Most certainly not.

    Rather than continue down the dangerous and unproductive train of thought I turned towards the familiar girl and noticed that she was on the phone, a frantic male voice was chattering away from her phone’s speaker and I tried to subtly eavesdrop as to distract myself.

    “Slow down.” she said pinching the bridge of her nose “You’re up pretty damn late for you, start with why.”

    The voice chattered away again, slower, but still frantic

    “I don’t like where this conversation is going, please tell me you didn’t do something stupid.”

    The amount of words that the chattering seemed to correlate to did imply that mystery man did in fact do something stupid.

    “What. The. Hell. Did. You. Do. Johnny?” the girl ground her teeth with every word

    The voice screamed out words that I could easily make out as “Just come over and help me, please!” said in a manner that I could only describe as desperate and panicked.

    My totally accurate and in no way wishful thinking deductions have led me to believe that this girl’s boyfriend is going to be in the doghouse or on the couch for the forseeable future. Such are the trials of young love. Well whoever this girl is probably has it handled, and judging by the look on her face, about to raise some hell.

    “You better open the door when I get there.” The girl said with a sigh “I’m hanging up, you keep that girl stable and you better not do something crazy while I try and get a cab ride there.”

    The plot thickens! And now I’m thinking about thick plots again.

    Dammit.

    As soon as we hit the ground floor robe girl strutted out as she called up a cab and I headed towards the bike rack to get Chibi Cyclone and unchain it. After that I popped my phone into the cradle on my handlebars, popped in the directions to Winslow on MapQuest and was on my popping way. I tried to gun it as safely and within the rules of the road as I could, tyring to avoid a ticket, and thanked my magatama for letting me know how far I can go before I’m in lawbreaking territory.

    It didn’t take long, there wasn’t that much traffic and the MapQuest app always seems to know the fastest route for your vehicle, and mopeds count as bicycles. When I actually got there it was time for some recon. I circled around the campus once on my bike and parked it a bit a ways from anywhere within eyeshot of a security camera and made sure to chain it up thoroughly, this was the ghetto after all, the second time was around foot. The campus had a chain-link fence around the perimeter topped with barbed wire to discourage fence hoppers and three entrances for vehicles; the main parking lot which was occupied only by a single security guard more engrossed in his phone than patrolling or even paying attention, the rear access to the school’s really crummy football field with its own parking lot and chained up fence gates, and a side gate probably made for landscaper access or something. Of course, I did find one other entrance. While I walked around the fence, I spotted a hole cut open and covered with some bushes, I crawled through and made my way to the school’s main building.

    Between both times I circled the building I had only seen one car, that security guard’s, which hopefully meant that there wouldn’t be anybody inside the school at the moment like a heavy cleaning crew. At my school we had an incident involving the ag club and some fertilizer, and since it was considered bio-hazardous waste by technicality they had to call the district to get the area cordoned off and have it be thoroughly cleaned by a hazmat team. With this being ACTUAL bio-waste involved I doubt they could actually avoid calling the district before word got back to them. Which meant that if there wasn’t a crew here then either they were on their way or they were there the day of the incident. If it took hours for them to get to my school I have no doubt they would take their sweet time getting to a shitty school like Winslow. At the very least I had a naive hope that I could get in there without having to sneak by anybody wandering inside.

    I kept to the rear side of the building, trying to find some way inside aside from the doors, feeling that they were probably all locked. I spotted an open window, about big enough for me to just eek through and with a convenient parallel wall for me to shimmy up like a ninja and just slide through. Of course with the winter breeze I didn’t get a whif of the inside. As soon as my feet touched the floor it hit me; old blood mixed with stale piss and untended toilets. It didn’t take me long to see the source of the blood smell; blood spatter on the wall and under the sink closest to the window, pooled blood that couldn’t quite go down the tile floor’s drain and just stained the floor. There was a trail and smear that seemed like it was made by someone being dragged through it. The amount of blood everywhere was probably enough for someone to die. The footprints through the blood were a bit curious. Different styles of shoe all frantically walking over the blood and presumably dragged the guy into the stall, then there's a small set of cat paw prints going into the stall but in a manner indicating bipedal movement and gait, and then over all the previous prints are a pair of a heavy shoe, maybe a work shoe, walking out of the stall and stopping at the sink before turning and walking out the door.

    Unless there was another stabbing at the school, which I wasn’t going to count out just yet, then this is where Walt was attacked and that just posed a couple of questions in and of itself. First, while there wasn’t a lot of blood on the floor there was enough to say it was full on stabs and not just shallow cuts and slashes like Walt tried to play it off last night. Second, there was the cat paw prints, the ones that looked like it was a cat walking upright rather than on all fours. The first explanation that would make sense would be that Walt is a cape, that would mean that he would have had his whatever-moment inside this bathroom stall as he was being stabbed or even as he sat in the stall or have had powers previously, but that did not explain the paw prints. The second explanation is that Walt is whatever his Grandparents or his parents are. This explanation entirely hinges on whatever Finn and Saoirse are whatever Walt’s parents were and sadly none of the smattering of memories of my old life had anything to say beyond maybe being some form of Denizen, the catch all term for sapient and sentient supernatural beings that are not mindless monsters, or a Scion like me. It makes more sense then Walt being a Parahuman to be completely honest and has a chain of logic that I would like to think makes sense. Something is weird about Finn and Saoirse, therefore there was something weird about Walt’s mom and possibly father, therefore Walt has that weirdness through inheritance.

    With a shake of my head I got to my feet and I made sure to take photos of the paw prints plus the blood before I left the bathroom. I stepped out as stealthily as possible making sure to ease the door closed to reduce noise and kept my ear out for any noises other than mine. It seemed like I was alone in the halls of Winslow High, the only thing that I could really sense was a foul stench coming from further in to the school. I followed the smell, already having a good idea of what the source was and sure enough, it was the locker. I don’t think I could really describe it in any other way then kegare, not just for the contents but for the amount of pure evil it took to actually put someone inside it. I took photos with my phone, trying desperately not to cry or crush my phone into scrap. My instincts told me that I wouldn’t find anything in that foulness, nothing worthwhile that could be used to bring me closer to the culprits, despite that I took the photos. I needed it to remind me of the kind of evil I was going up against, the kind that I knew existed but ignored my whole life.

    Actually seeing the locker in person did tell me one thing at least; this was premeditated, it was personal, there was history behind it, which meant I may just have something with that incident report line. Which meant I needed to get to the administration office. I spotted a few signs showing where the main office was and followed them, still trying to be sneaky in case there was someone else inside the school with me. When I got there and tried the door, it was locked. Luckily I knew just the trick to get it open. I knelt down in front of the doorknob, gave a quiet clap, left my hands in a prayer position, and then gave a bow to it.

    “Pardon the intrusion, most venerable kami of the door.” I made sure to address the kami with as much respect as I could “My friend was harmed in this school and the answers I seek may be within the records held beyond you. May I come inside?”

    The grain of the wood shifted slightly making a pensive face and pausing to think for a few moments. The face in the wood grain softened, then nodded, and I heard the lock disengage.

    “Thank you kami-sama.” I said as I opened the door, giving it a pat on the frame as I passed through the threshold.

    As I walked into the office two thoughts popped into my head; I should probably give my bike and my phone some TLC and thank their kami, and that this office was the most disorganized office I had ever seen. It was honestly very difficult to look at and I didn’t know where to even begin. I’m not exactly tech savvy and I don’t think that a school computer’s kami would exactly be willing to parlay with someone other than the person who used it on the reg, I got lucky with the door, I didn’t need to push it. That left everything else. I honestly don’t know how much time I spent combing through each and every unlocked cabinet and drawer but it was probably forty five minutes minimum, luckily it was time well spent. I had found a good amount of incident reports with Taylor’s name going back as far as last year in really bizarre places like inside a binder marked “Loss Sheets”, under the secretary’s desk, or even in a box marked “To Be Shredded for Boiler Kindling” of all things.

    Taylor had quite a few girls bullying her, but the three names that came up the most were Emma B, Sophia H, and Madison C. I couldn’t find anything that could help me find out what those last initials stood for or even where to look, it was like this place was built on an indian burial ground with a floor plan that generated negative feng shui AND was cursed by a gypsy woman that was having a bad day for good measure! It was honestly a miracle that I found what I did. I know that nobody would notice a few missing incident reports, but I needed copies for myself that I could reference with Walt and Donnie when he gets his head back on straight.

    WHIRR~

    I turned the copy machine on and felt myself die a little inside with every loud noise that came out of it.

    KER-RUUUUUUNG~

    With every page copied, a loud whirring and clunking of internals chugged out.

    BWEEEEEM~

    I whipped my head back and forth between the window and the copy machine, praying that nobody walked in and nobody was inside the building.

    VWIM~ VWIM~

    Then the blasted thing finally stopped making noise and I stuffed the copies into my parka and left the originals sandwiched between some random file folders on the secretary’s desk.

    I didn’t want to risk exposing myself anymore than I had so I left the room, thanking the kami of the door again as I left. Sneaking my way down the halls, I heard something that made my heart beat out of my chest.

    A burly sounding man shouting “Hey make sure to bring the pressure washer and the gut bucket!” and the slam of a van’s sliding door.

    With that, I stopped sneaking and just bolted towards the school’s back door. With every step I hoped and prayed that I wasn’t about to be caught. I reached the back door and thanked every kami I could name, even myself, that the door had a regular deadbolt and not a keyhole on both sides. I undid the lock, clumsily and hastily, threw the door open and ran for the hole in the fence. I didn’t stop running until I got to my bike.

    I stopped, my breathing getting only a little heavy, and looked over my shoulder towards the school. The cleaning crew were all laughing and joking, nobody was chasing me and I was sure that nobody even noticed I was there. I let out a sigh and felt my jacket to make sure that the copies I made were still there, the rustle of paper telling me they were. I unchained Chibi Cyclone, thinking on what I had just done. Even if there was something in the incident reports, they wouldn’t be admissible in court, not unless I could get a cop to actually look for the originals and I doubted they would in this town. Still, it was a lead.

    I revved up my bike and took off towards home, hoping that Walt’s charges got dropped and that he’d be able to help this investigation and that he’d answer my questions about his attack.
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2021
  30. Assblaster5000

    Assblaster5000 Know what you're doing yet?

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    Huh, Amaterasu, chibi vigilantly, novice PI, and beginner Tech Priest.

    And here I was thinking about her as Best doG.

    Good chapter though, gives some interesting insight into Lily's thought process.
     
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