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[DC] Raven Lunacy (OC in Teen Titans)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Ace Dreamer, May 15, 2020.

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  1. Extras: Response to Story Prompt & Story Cosmology
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    This is included for that traditional of excuses, 'historical reasons'. It reflects the way the ideas for this story developed, but, you can see things went off in other directions...




    So, has to be a Self Insert? Pity... Raven ripping an early Skitter (and Queen Administrator) out of the Worm-verse might be fun... Taylor really needs friends... Taylor with magic... Of course she'd use it responsibly. :)

    (So, how easy would it be to make tiny harnesses for butterflies, that make them near-indestrucible and give them the strength of an immense giant? A few thousand, preferably? :) )

    ((Introduces the possibility of butterflying-away problems???))

    Which version of Raven & the Titans do you meet?

    OK, TT started in 1964, but I think it's really a toss-up between the 1980s New Teen Titans and the 2000s cartoon series, which shared a lot between them. DC killed Raven a few too many times... (i.e. more than zero.) You really need a Robin there, to channel the Batman vibe. Cyborg is fun, and gives you access to high tech. Garfield, you could ask him what the Doom Patrol was all about, and try and figure-out which DC retcons seem to be in effect. And, of course you need Starfire (for extra fun she could have an occasional hair-management issue...).

    I guess if you really wanted to mess with things you could have a scratch-built version of the non-Raven Titans, with, for example, a (mostly) redeemed Blackfire, a non-evil Terra, a female Robin, Miss Martian as your shape-shifter, Wonder Girl, and make the SI female no matter what they were originally, so you get an all-female team...

    Do you go adventuring with the Titans, once you're powerful enough to help, or do you only get involved when the Tower gets attacked?

    Getting someone into adventures when they start out with no powers, and are (just) a magical apprentice - doesn't seem smart. But, in the DC Universe sources of powers seem to be hidden under every bush, so there's a risk of acquiring them by accident... So, going on adventures could mean you end up with powers, but they're really not ones you want, and have... unfortunate downsides.

    What sort of spells would you want to focus on?

    Keeping yourself sane sounds a good start - magic can be risky, that way. Then you (carefully!) go for spells that assist learning - magic sensing, speed reading, cramming new skills, a meditation enhancer, truth-telling, maybe reduced sleep, something to help your language skills, if you can get it. Learning some basic Empathy from Raven would be good - too much risk of you going asocial, otherwise, disappearing into the stacks. Might need some magic to hide off-world knowledge from casual searchers, too.

    Spells that stop you being too easily dead sounds good (includes health&longevity), once you've handled the sanity issue - magical deflection/earthing? After that, information magic, so you know what's going on, stealth scrying, seeing what is really before you, etc. In a supers world the critical power is arguably flight, so reflexive levitation as a minimum. If you are flying then you're a good target, so invisibility, and because that's often not good enough, phasing, which might extend into dimension walking, later. Healing self and others is good - always a good idea to have a back-up healer around (if healing also works on inanimate things, even better!). Some low-grade shape-shifting can be really useful, too.

    Learning magic to help Raven, help protect her from external influences, people trying to mess with her, mentally or magically. Offer to carry a teleport focus for her, so she's got someone to escape to. Ask other ways having an apprentice might be useful to her.

    Then there's all that utility magic... Stuff to manage hair, both control the length, and mean you don't need to shave, anywhere. Keeping you and your clothes clean and in good repair. A light and a fire-lighting spell. Life-support (underwater, space, etc.) magic. Emergency super-strength. Short-range (whisper, or even just think firmly) messages to your companions, longer-range that can talk to both magical receivers and the phone network. A 'virtual terminal' spell that could talk to the Internet, and record on removable media (and read from those), would be good.

    So, not so much a focus, more an extensive planned course of study. :)

    What would your uniform be like, if you bother with one?

    A good robe/cloak, with anti-catching (including slither-out-of-hostile-grip), that can conceal you and keep off the weather sounds good. Pockets-of-holding would be nice... Practical, hard-wearing, clothes underneath, probably in cream, browns and blues. Trousers, a good solid belt. Pockets. Good gloves, that protect but don't mess with your sense of touch. (All self-repairing. Shape-shifting would be good.) And, you need the best, magically-improved, boots you can get. Running away is an under-appreciated skill. :)

    So, not really Ren Faire, but not really terribly obviously super. :)

    Who do you try to date, if anyone?

    See how things develop, really. Friends are the most important thing, dating is very much secondary, something for later. Dates last a few hours, friends can last a lifetime. Raven is the obvious prospect, as will spend a lot of time with her. Making sure the master-student relationship isn't messed-up by dating would be important, of course. Other than her, who knows? :)

    What do you do when you get back home?

    Step one is obviously find out how long I've been away, and if more than a few hours what the knock-on consequences are. Step two, where I might be needed, and what the local state of the magical art is. Find out about 'magical society', why magic has been nearly invisible for so long. And, why it might be needed, now. Make local magical friends, if that seems sensible. So, risks and possibilities.

    How do you deal with fangirls & fanboys?

    "Oh, you want Stormcrow? They might've gone out the back way" - I did mention the invisibility, and maybe minor shape-shifting, didn't I? :)


    Story Cosmology

    You can ignore this, if you want, and just read the story 'as is'. But, some people really like this stuff, so I'm shoving it in, here.

    Raven combines the psychic powers of a human with demon reality manipulation, which is more based on the demon's personality, and interests, than any particular elemental system. So, psychic powers from her mother, psychic powers being the older-fashioned version of psionics, or mental powers more controlled by the unconscious rather than the conscious mind.

    Raven also has the bits of Trigon's power that he saw fit, or thought were safe, to stuff into a human-demon hybrid, that he planned to use as a tool to extend his power and reign.

    If you slice things up in certain ways then 'reality manipulation' (stuff which breaks physics) gives you 'Magic', 'Psychic' (or 'Psionic') and 'Chi' (or 'Ki', or 'Life Force'). Then, you might throw in 'Super Science' ('The Spark', if you're a Girl Genius fan), as that breaks physics all over the place. Then, there's 'Super Powers', or in non-supers universes, 'Unique Powers'. There's fun questions as to whether those divisions are just 'safe' ways of altering things, and below them there's far more dangerous stuff. I, of course, will be ignoring this possibility in my cut at the story. :)

    These details are more to do with why Geo doesn't just get to learn 'magic', but instead has 'psychic', 'chi' and, arguably, 'super science' bits. She also has conventional science and technology... The super-science is the 'alchemical technology' which she knows, and while alchemy is related to magic, it goes off in rather different directions...

    (For extra fun, 'The Force' (in Star Wars) could be considered the same thing as 'Chi'...)
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2020
  2. Extras: Author Notes 1
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes for 'Raven Lunacy'

    Don't know if anyone's interested in this sort of thing, but before this story 'Geo' was a 107pt character as defined by Hero System 5thEd, made up of 75pt Base, 2xp, and 30pts of Disadvantages. That's roughly the definition of a starting Competent Normal/Low-powered Hero (note, not a super hero), though they'd more likely be a 50+50pt character. As the story progresses the character sheet's been updated, using further experience points (xp). The original, pre-story, first used (2012?), version of Geo was 15+25pts, and was (slowly) developed from there.

    Non-standard is that there's extra, bonus, points due to 'becoming a super hero' also in the mix, an initial +25pts, and a further +25pts once reaches 12xp total. These are only allowed to be spent, 1 for 1, as further xp is earned, so after the second 'bonus' 1xp allows 3 pts to be spent. Yes, points can be saved. Hero System awards between 1xp and 5xp per 'episode', or sometimes per 'adventure' - each bit posted here has been considered to be an 'episode', which is, arguably, a bit generous.

    The idea is that spending points has to be justified, by story situations, or character background, though some (typically initial) fudging may be reasonable. So, just because you (the player) want to get a bigger fire bolt that's not a good enough reason for it to happen. :)

    No, I don't plan to post the character sheet at any point (I might post an overview), but I thought this process might interest other authors.

    Yes, I know, silly game mechanics can be annoying. :)
     
  3. Extras: Author Notes 2
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    That's the story as posted, so far. Two weeks of it. Plans are to post five episodes a week, on weekdays, as long as my muse cooperates. Yes, I have a (small) buffer.

    Though I don't know if there'll be any interest, yes, Omake are welcome. Please be nice to the characters, if you can, they are rather fragile teens. :)

    If you want to go NSFW, look for the thread '[NSFW] [DC] You are Raven's Apprentice', which is, strangely enough, in the NSFW area. I'm pretty sure Prince Charon will welcome new stories in there.
     
  4. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 1
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 1

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls between Episode 15 and 16.

    ---

    Raven looks at me. I look back. Is she annoyed? You can't always tell, with Raven.

    "We're meeting this evening, unlike our normal time, partly because I don't want Robin getting involved. Yes, I've swept the area for any 'bugs' he, or anyone else, might've been using, and I'm blocking outside surveillance methods."

    She pauses, looks at me for a few moments.

    "I went and cleaned-up after you. Fixed the broken arm. Which, hurt. Made it quite clear you're an associate. I don't blame you, I likely would've done the same thing. Robin, I'm pretty sure that Robin will be... upset, once he reads the police report."

    Another pause. I work hard not to react.

    "Good. No flinching. You'll need that self-control, moving forwards. So. The reason why we're meeting."

    A wave of one arm, and a dark tendril lifts a heavy cloth from what I took to be a statue, or something. It isn't. It's me. Kneeling, naked, and looking blank.

    "You may recall I took a blood drop, just after you arrived, to confirm your apprenticeship. This is why you shouldn't give anyone your blood, without them agreeing exactly what they might use it for. Don't worry. It's safe. Go closer, take a better look."

    Cautiously, I move up. The... figure is unmoving, not even breathing, and is in a small, ritual, circle. I sense no life, but, the circle might block that. Kneeling down, next to it, leaning closer, carefully staying out of the circle. She is slightly see-through.

    "This is an image, frozen in time, of how you were when you arrived. Accurate to quite a deep level. The art of making them is... complex. In theory you could use this to apparently be in two places at once, help with that secret identity business some are so concerned with. But, the reason I have this is for comparison, with how you are now. Which I think is better than using a conference room. Or relying on the memory, the written reports, of others."

    "I will instruct you in the rituals, so you can compare this image with your current state. What you learn is private, to you, but I'd request you share with me the areas that you feel have improved, due to your apprenticeship."

    ---

    Well. That was interesting. After I said I was sure I'd finished, Raven broke the ritual circle. And, the 'statue' dissolved, as though it never existed. She gave a small cloth, and I wiped-up the drop of, strangely fresh, blood from the centre. I was supposed to burn that, in private, later.

    Physically, I've improved in most respects, except I'm not stronger. Though, I recall a rebuild to boost my strength, not long before arrival, to help deal with the labour of nursing - people can be quite heavy. Mentally, I've improved a little, though I think I recall getting smarter, on my arrival, so maybe that's a bit misleading. I'm even, I think, better-looking, though, that might be down to having a bit more confidence. I'm qualifying things, a lot, aren't I?

    Apart from running a little faster, I think that's about it.

    I know I'm a lot better at meditation and astral projection, maybe learned a little about navigating the astral. And, languages, can't forget that, 'Amo, Amas, Amat'. There's the various chi bits. A little knowledge, here and there, some improved technical skills. Everything else is magic, using things Raven's loaned me.

    I look at Raven.

    "Yes, I've improved. Mentally, physically. A little. Learned some things. I still think the chi stuff is weird. Just about everything else is magic, you've given me."

    She, briefly, frowns.

    "The robe is yours. That was not a loan. The other... items. They are for you to learn how to make them, yourself."

    "You don't see much change?"

    She switches, briefly, to a small grin.

    "We have just started, my apprentice!"




    This is a rather arbitary point, but after her first solo 'battle', probably not a bad one. If you compare with how she started Geo/Sugoi is now a total 197 point character, made up of 125pts Base, 37xp, and 35pts of Disadvantages (she's acquired a 'Fear of Insanity'), which is a massive 90pts improvement more than doubling her base points.

    If you wanted to compare with D&D then assuming 15pts is roughly a 'level', that's six (6!) levels, so if you assume she started at 5th she's now 11th level. But, in Hero System terms she's still not yet even equivalent to a low-powered super-hero (150pts plus up to 100pts; total 250pts; arguably 10th-12th). The reason is she's a 'heroic', not a 'super-heroic', build - heroic characters tend to have lower characteristics than super-heroes, but a wider range of skills (bar the 'Batman' sort of design); weapons are used by having weapons proficiency skills, rather than buying the weapon as a 'power', and 'perks' instead of powers, for example.

    As noted previously, this is all Hero System 5thEd, and a handful of (character/experience) points can make a massive difference in (particularly non-combat) effectiveness. Restraint is needed in spending points in a 'reasonable' way, and you can argue that the system is a 'modelling tool', allowing creation of useful characters, but, without that restraint, not necessarily usable characters. Referees of Hero System need to be particularly beware of 'efficient' designs (*cough* power-gamer *cough*).

    I may post more of this info, I don't plan to go into too much detail. And, as said previously...

    Silly game mechanics can be annoying. :)




    AN: Hopefully this's of some interest. One of the most interesting things in stories is that it's often the restrictions on where they might go which make them interesting, not the scope. Ignore that at your peril!
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2020
  5. Extras: Author Notes 3 - Team Structure
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes 3 - Team Structure

    On the surface the Team Leader is Robin. This is what a lot of people will assume, looking from the outside. He has the charisma and presence, and is willing to speak on behalf of the team. If you look a bit more closely it becomes rather more fuzzy. Neither Beast Boy nor Starfire seem willing to lead. Cyborg appears to prefer a background role, though he could lead. Raven is more tricky.

    The problem is that a team leader really needs to fully understands all the capabilities of their team. If they are unpowered humans this is a lot less difficult, as even though the team may have specialists the leader should have a general idea what they all can do. In a super-powered team, particularly of misfits like the Teen Titans, it gets a lot more difficult. In particular, no one fully grasps the limits of all their powers. Particularly Raven's. Maybe not even her.

    So, Robin is effectively the tactical, combat, leader. This fits in with his core skills, though, sometimes he tends to be a bit of a loner. Out of combat the team is a lot more democratic, and they have diverse skills, drawing on lots of sources.

    This story follows the assumption that the reason the Teen Titans exists is so these individuals have somewhere to live, work together. And, without the team no one would be supporting Raven, and the terrible risks that would cause. After all, she knows someone tried to kill her, at least once, as a very young child. And, that didn't go at all well, for them. Nor, she's pretty sure, would locking her up somewhere work.
     
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2020
  6. Extras: Author Notes 4 - Geo's a Super Hero!
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes 4 - Geo's a Super Hero!

    More of the game mechanics stuff...

    As of Episode 26 Geo is a base 150pt character, which in Hero System 5thEd terms makes her, just, a Low-Powered Superhero. She's got quite low Disadvantages compared to a normal super-hero, only 50pts, and, as mentioned in Author Omake 1 her 'build' is 'heroic', not a 'super-heroic'.

    However, since the start of the story she's got 60 experience points, which doing the D&D equivalent level comparison is four levels. In addition to the gradually applied 75pt bonus 'becoming a hero' points, another five levels, is an in-story increase of nine (9!) levels, which with her initial five levels makes her 14th level. Still significantly below any of the Teen Titans, but, gradually, getting a bit closer.

    Will Master Roshi turn Geo into a world-saving super-hero? I certainly don't know! :)

    (Possibly worth noting is that this is 'fast burn' character development. What would be more reasonable? That's hard to say, as it depends on the story-style. If these events happened in a tabletop game then experience points awarded (that's the 60xp above) would likely be at about half this rate. Maybe. Probably. :) )
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2020
  7. Extras: Author Notes 5 - Story Tech
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes 5 - Story Tech

    I'm putting this here because there's a number of planned story elements which depend on the technology, 'tech', which is around in this DC Teen Titans setting. That's the 'common socially available' tech, as opposed to super-science, alien tech, or even the 'alch tech' (alchemical technology) known to Geo.

    A major shock to some, this setting does not have the universal Internet, nor the World Wide Web, which is something which runs on the Internet. There's no broadband, no digital cable tv, only plain ordinary telephone systems, which are analogue, not digital. And, at story start, the cell/mobile phones resemble house bricks, and do not include even non-video cameras.

    There are high-speed networks linking universities, many of the bigger businesses, banks, likely some government offices. But, there's no search engines, like Google, and the way home or most business computers talk together is via BBS, so early 1990s.

    No Amazon, no online shopping, no downloads of video, or even music. And, no MMORPGs, like WoW.

    Most television sets or computer screens are old-style CRT, though some expensive ones have flat screens, and some really expensive ones large flat screens. You can assume, though, that home, desktop, computers are quite powerful, about year 2000 grade. You need to be pretty rich to have a laptop, mainly due to flat-screen cost.

    So, a terribly primitive world, lacking in all modern amenities. :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2020
  8. Extras: Raven Worm 1, Author Omake 2
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Worm 1, Author Omake 2

    Next >

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', which has nothing to do with Geo's story, and is definitely not canon. However, a reader (Dukem) implied it might exist...




    "Yes, I am the Rogue, Arachno Mage, and this is my loyal sidekick, Arachnophilia! I wish to make it quite clear that I have nothing to do with the Hero, Flutterby, and her Butterfly Horde!"

    Emma smiled, while gritting her teeth. Never mind that she was in drider-form, and therefore fell under Taylor's powers, which applied to anything vaguely buggy. The fact that she was dressed in nothing but a small, domino, mask, as anything else caused intolerable itching, meant Taylor had endless blackmail material.

    Her only hope was that the heroic Flutterby would hear of her fate, and rescue her from the evil, though admittedly no longer weak, Taylor. But, she wished that she'd hurry up!

    OK, the wings, the flying, were nice, as was the wall-climbing, the webs, the venom that Taylor could make do just about anything she liked. But, Brockton Bay was chilly, this time of year, and a model needed to look after her good looks!




    AN: There you are, an Omake! Everything is is quite clear now, isn't it! :)

    AN: Honest, this Emma got her powers by being bit by a radioactive drider. Honest!

    AN: I suppose I should point to here, so you can see what this was based on...

    Raven ripping an early Skitter (and Queen Administrator) out of the Worm-verse might be fun... Taylor really needs friends... Taylor with magic... Of course she'd use it responsibly. :)

    (So, how easy would it be to make tiny harnesses for butterflies, that make them near-indestrucible and give them the strength of an immense giant? A few thousand, preferably? :) )

    ((Introduces the possibility of butterflying-away problems???))

    Next >
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2020
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  9. Extras: Author Notes 6 - Story Cosmology 2
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes 6 - Story Cosmology 2

    This bit is ignorable, and you can just read the story, and think the author is a bit mad and/or strange. Some might want to not read much of this, particularly the references in the Author Notes, because this is (just) a throw-away story, and, they've got better things to do with their time and lives.

    Given all that...

    Put simply, the body, the mind and the spirit/soul are treated as different, though related and intertwined, things. This means that the brain is the physical, squishy bit, in computing terms the 'hardware', the mind is the decision-making bit, in computing terms the 'software', and the soul/spirit is the really difficult to pin-down purpose and 'higher' motivation, again in computing the aims of the programmer. So, yes, a three-way divide: Body, Mind, Spirit.

    Please note that, no, the human brain is not considered to be 'just a computer', they're rather different things. Looking at the history of ideas about the way humans do thinking it's been compared to all sorts of things, including a fire, engines, clockwork, a business office, etc.

    Given that...

    One consequence is that suitable other 'hardware' could be something the mind exists and operates in, like a computer. For the purpose of this story you can assume minds can be moved around, though this is very, very, difficult - ingenuity though... Where do souls/spirits fit in? Well, mostly, they tag-along with minds, and a spirit without a mind isn't likely to be doing much. But, the idea is that there's something beyond, 'higher', than minds.

    Science in this story mostly is concerned with the physical, such as bodies, but at the top-level starts dealing with minds, 'chi' is concerned with living things, the 'psychic' stuff with minds, though it can 'reach down' to deal with the physical, and magic (non-divine flavour) can mess with the physical and the mental, but is rather weak when you come to the spiritual.

    Classically, the mind and the body are often treated as two different things, and this, as well as ideas about individualism, and choice, are built-in to much of culture and law. Things get interesting when you look at the details though...




    AN: Mental strain warning, quite a lot of the below can be a bit mind-bending... The notes below hopefully show this is something that's been 'looted' from all over the place. Maybe you'd prefer fiction? Try the works of Jack L. Chalker, though be warned it goes NSFW in strange ways.

    AN: Some might be interested in the quote (Mysticism Warning) 'As Avove, So Below'...

    AN: All this builds on ideas of the (Mysticism Warning) 'soul'...

    AN: Then there's the business of (Philosophy Warning) mind-body dualism...

    AN: And, for real fun, there's (Philosophy Warning) physicalism... Some look at the issue as (Philosophy Warning) naive realism...

    AN: So, the only important thing is the body, the brain, all the rest is mystical time-wasting? Warning, yes, the rabbit hole goes down further... :)
     
    Last edited: Jun 17, 2020
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  10. Extras: Raven Worm 2, Author Omake 3
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Worm 2, Author Omake 3

    < Previous

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', which has nothing to do with Geo's story, and is definitely not canon. However, a reader (Dukem) implied it might exist...




    Madison was Nematode Girl. Some sort of tiny worm, you might think? Unimportant. Ignorable.

    Nematodes are all over the place. And, her name was misleading, because she also 'got' mites. And, just about every healthy human has those.

    She was also a sort of slave. Of the rogue, 'Arachno Mage'. And, she got to be chief slave, of all the other girls who'd followed her and Emma. But, at least she got to know she was a slave, they just got their minds used as useful tools, without them realising.

    Emma, as Arachnophilia, was the visible face of Arachno Mage's power. The strong arm, and, one who healed, amazingly quickly, from anything that anyone had done to her, so far. The fights between her and Shadow Stalker, those'd been interesting to watch. And, the fights with various villain capes in Brockton Bay.

    How did Madison watch? Even though she wasn't a normal cape, rather one created by Arachno Mage's power over anything bug-related, she knew she was amazingly powerful. She could somehow see, sense damage to, anything close, maybe within a half-metre, about 18-inches, of the smaller bugs, like nematode worms or mites, anywhere within Brockton Bay, and recall that, perfectly. You might say she did 'bugging'.

    Either from a distance, or if she wanted to see things with human-grade eyesight, as an invisible, apparently immaterial, bug-mediated presence. Or, it might be one of her 'slaves' doing the looking. Then, she could play those memories, her's and her slave's, back, for Arachno Mage. Or, 'Taylor', as she knew she was. But, couldn't say.

    She was pretty sure there were 'holes' in her coverage. Things she wasn't allowed to know. Of course, she somehow had filters, bugs getting eaten or otherwise killed in a normal way was ignored. Presumably, some things Arachno Mage wanted to keep private. And, after all, she also had to obey instructions to forget things.

    There was also one, rather glaringly obvious to her, hole in her coverage. Flutterby. And her weaponised butterflies.

    But, she didn't hold out much hope in that direction, despite Emma's delusions about a heroic rescue. Somehow, Taylor would have that covered. No one got to bully her, these days. There was a quiet confidence about her that made it seem an amazingly bad idea.

    Now, Madison was an invisible watcher in the latest fight between Emma, as Arachnophilia, and Shadow Stalker, who she happened to know was Sophia. It was obvious that Arachno Mage was just playing with her, she could've settled the matter long ago. She imagined Taylor and Sophia, just standing there, glaring at each other.

    No one could hear her, no one would know. Unless, Arachno Mage asked her the right direct question, later.

    So, she mumbled to herself, an act of defiance, thinking of Taylor and Sophia.

    "Now, Kiss."




    AN: Another 'Worm' Omake? Why, you might say. Well, it seemed there might be a bit more story to tell...

    AN: I'll reference, here, nematode, and mite, for reader convenience.

    AN: No, I don't anticipate any more of these. And, as a cruel writer, I'll say that Taylor does have friends, but, Madison isn't allowed to know about them. Are they visitors from the TT-verse? We may never know. :)

    < Previous
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2020
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  11. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 4
    Ace Dreamer

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 4

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It overlaps Episode 40.

    ---

    We're trapped. There's no prospect of escape. The enemy is implacable. What can we do? Surrender seems to be the only option.

    Kory has decided there'll be a 'girl's night out'.

    This will involve dressing in suitable going-out clothes (Raven, followed by me, have refused 'party' clothes) and seeing the sights of the city. Some eating, some dancing, that sort of thing.

    I get the impression this is both to welcome Terra to the team (apparently we're to call her 'Tara'), and cheer-up Kory after the incident with her sister.

    Kory will be wearing the 'image modulator' that Raven has persuaded her is a 'gift' from her sister. That it's a tiny payment towards what she did hasn't been discussed. At all.

    Raven will be dressed as a 'civilian', use a minor magical talisman to hide her forehead mark, and will be using her improved self-control to keep her skin from going grey.

    She'll be 'Rav' for the evening - 'Rachel' is not a name she chooses to use except for rare need in official paperwork. Privately, she also tells me she dislikes the surname 'Roth', as she thinks it sounds too much like 'Wrath', a reminder of her father.

    Me? I'm sort of along for the ride.

    ---

    That this all involved some shopping to obtain the going-out clothes was a mere detail. Not something Kory had thought of. At all.

    Raven has insisted on sensible shoes, though she doesn't object to them being 'smart'. I quite agree - if I can't wear my boots I still want something I can run in. Terra, sorry, 'Tara' listens to our comments and says anything with significant heels will interfere with good dancing.

    And, no cheating with flight is allowed for the evening. Particularly as her variety is a little... more obvious than ours.

    So, we shop. And, survive that without undue pain.

    ---

    The sight-seeing is fun. The food is good. The dancing... OK, there may have been just a tiny bit of martial arts or Tai Chi moves in my free-form dance style. I avoided any acrobatics, though.

    In a quiet way I think Raven enjoyed herself, as well.

    Tara and Kory bonded. Tara talking of some of the strange places she'd seen around the world, focusing on the food and cultural side, avoiding the violence that we were pretty sure she'd experienced.

    I think we all enjoyed ourselves.

    The 'boys' had apparently been having a gaming night, which they'd forcibly dragged Robin into. Sensible, as he really didn't relax enough. I expect Master Roshi found something to occupy himself, and Kory has loaned Nurf some new books.

    I caught myself thinking about Oracle, at one point. We'd often talked late into the evening, and I was pretty sure she was lonely. Wondered if she'd enjoy a night-out like this.

    But, she was an intensely private person, so, maybe not.

    ---

    Walking back, through a convenient alleyway. Maybe we should've known better? But, it was clean, and nicely decorated with hanging flower-baskets.

    A ghostly figure steps out from a wall. The brick-work pattern clear though his old-fashioned clothes. Maybe... Did he look like a pirate?

    "I hope you ladies dined well, this fine evening. For now, I will dine, on your fear!"

    We look at each other. Raven goes to step forward, but Kory holds out her hand.

    "My evening. I arranged things."

    She steps forwards, miming cracking her knuckles.

    The... ghost pirate doesn't look at all troubled.

    "You cannot harm me! I'm a spirit! But, you, my pretties, I can harm you!"

    Kory half-turns, looks at us. Steps back towards us. Floats into a sitting position in the air.

    The ghost is beginning to look a little... concerned.

    Then, Kory's spirit floats out of her body. It all it's glorious orange-skinned battle array. Draws her sword. Swishes it, experimentally. Grins at the pirate.

    Strides forwards. Through the air.

    ---

    There's a whimpering mass of pirate on the ground. Kory generously only used the flat of her blade. She did fence with him, for a while. But, it was quickly clear who was more skilled.

    Raven's shadow, which has been carefully impersonating a more conventional one, all evening, reaches out a tendril. And, the pirate is gone.

    I am not envious of the way Kory neatly slides back into her body, without losing combat awareness. I'm quite firm on that point. I pay attention to Raven being generous enough to tell us what she's done.

    "Just a temporary binding. I'll see to sending him somewhere more permanent, later. May have to search out his spirit-anchors. Shouldn't take much effort." She half-sighs.

    "Kory? Do you mind? I think I'd like to walk on a beach. In bare feet?"

    So, we do.




    AN: San Francisco has very many entertainment possibilities... But, there is history.
     
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2020
  12. Extras: No Omake; Try Virtual Gaming?
    Ace Dreamer

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    No Omake; Try Virtual Gaming?

    Sorry, too busy this Friday+weekend to write an Omake, but, I've currently got a buffer of nine episodes, so, that's good?


    Apparently it's possible to create and run a virtual gaming convention, which you can attend, for free, and use free online tools to play games at. You can even virtually play many board-games. All without leaving the (hopeful) comfort of your own home. Who knew? :)

    Of course, maybe you are ambitious, want to do gaming in a free-to-use online virtual world (VR or VW), such as Second Life (SL)? Free-to-download online VW browser, both from the SL site and from third-parties.

    Or, you are really ambitious, and want to host your own virtual world using home computing or Cloud resources? Then, use that as a platform within which you implement your own games, or even have avatars of AIs and/or chatbots running around?

    Maybe even accessed via a VR headset?

    All do-able stuff, but, please be warned some find such systems psychologically addictive... And, some find they dream of VWs, or have flash-backs during day-to-day life...

    But, who am I to interfere with you exploring how cyberpunk you can make modern life? :)




    You might say, all that sounds expensive, what does it mean to me?

    Well, some claim there's been repeated 'waves' over the last forty-years to remove power from individuals, and centralise it. This isn't 'political', except in the broadest sense, it's about persuading people to use more centralised computing facilities, and not learn about computing/information technology, to use at home or in their workplace.

    The latest bit is to persuade people that 'The Cloud' is how you should be doing anything except directly personal computing. That your direct personal computing needs can best be provided by a smart-phone in your pocket. Finally, that you don't need any more in the way of internet connection than your smart-phone; no need for home broadband.

    This is not to say that these don't work, it's more to say that they involve risks, both of things like single-point-of-failure, and loss of personal control, over the data (and meta-data) which's become a critical part of almost everyone's lives. One approach is the 'encrypt everything' viewpoint, another is shared collaborative (computer) networks, so you don't depend on people like Google or Amazon, a third is ensuring you maintain personal control over your data (and meta-data).

    Something else to watch out for is 'free' computing services (including e-mail addresses), like Facebook or Google; these all use resources, so it's smart to ask, how are these paid for? You can buy your own domain name pretty cheap, if you pay for, say, ten-years in advance, and then use that for all your e-mail needs. For a business not having your own domain name, and using that for e-mail and a website, is often considered a sign of being unprofessional. Web space is also pretty cheap, and there's free tools to help you build and maintain websites.

    However, a 'hybrid' approach can have advantages over a 'pure' one.

    Nothing wrong with The Cloud, as long as you don't depend on it for business or personal survival, and you're happy with 'exposing' your business or personal data that way. So, have computing storage which is under your personal, physical, control, but back your data up (including your smart-phone) using strong encryption to The Cloud.

    Use a smart-phone, but also have something like a Raspberry Pi system at work or home, providing your business or home computer data storage.

    And, a smart-phone (or even a smart-watch) can be very useful, but ensure you also have business or home broadband, and a full-sized keyboard plus pointer device, maybe attached to a Raspberry Pi, for non-trivial interaction. Some will say a tablet computer is good for everything a smart-phone wont do, but, those are really data-consumption devices, not general-purpose computers. (I'd also recommend having a wired phone, that's powered by your phone-line, somewhere, ready to plug-in, in emergencies.)

    Some have even found that a home laser printer is financially wise.

    Finally, people may have tried to sell you a 'smart-home', via the internet-of-things. But, you may note that Microsoft, Amazon, Google or whoever intrude into your home in a massive and intimate way (see news reports). Everything they provide can be done using bits under your control (like a few Raspberry Pis). Most of us don't want Orwell's Big Brother of 1984 happening in our own homes...

    ...

    Sorry, this bit has gone rather over-board! :)

    Further, I wish to make it clear I have no connection to the Raspberry Pi Foundation. :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2020
  13. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 5
    Ace Dreamer

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 5

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 50.

    AN: This Omake is in honour of dogbertcarroll, the fanfic author, who has greatly entertained me, and undoubtedly influenced my writing.

    ---

    Raven sighed. They thought she was stupid. Or, at least distracted. By de-cursing her apprentice.

    But, she'd set wards, and sensor seines, nets hanging to catch the smallest impression. Linked to a tangle net, a trap for those trying to move in or out by any non-mundane means.

    The inner nets covered the Tower, the middle ones the city, and the outer, which was sensor-only, the Earth. The knowledge from the last she only delved into given good reason - maybe her apprentice could make her one of those 'artificial intelligences' to watch that for her?

    Of course, she'd set exclusions for her, her apprentice and Kory. And, Master Roshi, after the first time she'd caught him. Though, she still got reports on all passage.

    And, because she wasn't a fool, all that was automatic, and powered in such a way that it didn't directly draw on her personal energies.

    ---

    Previously she'd caught a number of demons in the city net. But, questioning them taught her little. They just knew they'd been summoned by one of her father's minions, but could give no name. A quick assay, and she either destroyed them or sent them back. She could hope that upset both her father and the minion.

    She'd caught a few humans (or similar), but the way the net worked the captured were held in a timeless state. A quick check and some were 'bounced', some dropped at the city boundaries, a few she'd stored to think about later. Yes, it wasn't a nice thing to do, but, they weren't suffering, or getting any older.

    Two nights ago something had tried, quite hard, to get out through the city net, but avoided being caught. She didn't recognise the type of travel, but it felt magical. After that she'd strengthened the net; it still was weak compared to the Tower one, but should stop anything but a major god.

    Hopefully that'd make it quite clear that someone was being serious.

    Of course, both the Tower and city boundary nets examined those who came and went by more mundane means. Again, far too much for her to check without either a specialised daemon or a golem mind, or, she should call it an 'AI'. Making daemons, yes, she could do it, but, it made her... uncomfortable.

    ---

    Tonight she had a puzzle, Two captures, one in the city net, one, far more worrying, in the Tower one.

    The Tower one was interesting, an attempt to swap the wooden remains of Puppet King, in his glass box, for a nearly identical puppet. The original was unchanged, the planned replacement had a powerful demon of possession (one of her father's, of course!) very cleverly hidden within it. Bound in such a way only specific outside magic would free it.

    First solid evidence Puppet King was linked to her father's minion. Maybe.

    She hoped she wasn't learning too much humility from her apprentice...

    But, so far, when she thought about it carefully, used her tiny blue mirror, she just felt better balanced. And, maybe just a little wiser. Which was another victory over her father.

    Real Puppet King back in his box, fake into a lead box with extra enchantments.

    The other one, a (mostly) human, come a long way, across the dimensions, carried by dreams and, she thought, a twisted wish. A nice young man with a mind and spirit she liked the taste of, one she thought could grow to be a friend. But, far from where the look of his destiny said he should be.

    So, far journeys.

    ---

    Standing. In a white stone palace. Lit by source-less light. Glowing presences.

    Good practice. They had immense power. But, someday, hopefully not too soon, she'd have to face her father.

    "I believe this is yours."

    She indicated the sleeping mortal figure, floating in her shadow, in Aquaman underroos.

    Without sound, the presences conferred.

    "Yes."

    "And, one of your 'opposition' used time-travel to send him to another world. My home."

    Hmm. Interesting I thought that rather than 'Mine'...

    "Yes."

    "So, I bought him back. He looked to have an important destiny."

    More silent conferring.

    "Yes."

    "Any objections to him being returned to his home?"

    "We do not like your kind. You have far too much power, and you disrupt things too much. But, yes, in this case, We, the Powers-That-Be, agree. And, We will ensure there's no more tampering with his time-line."

    "Good."

    And, with that, Raven returned six-year-old Xander Harris to his family home.




    AN: Seine so you know... And, tangle net.

    AN: Daemon, because you shouldn't get these things mixed up...

    AN: Underoos; please keep track of your sleep-wear!

    From: BtVS "The Killer In Me 7.13"

    AN: Xander Harris, because you really should know. :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2020
  14. Extras: Author Notes 6 - Story Ending
    Ace Dreamer

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    Author Notes 6 - Story Ending

    It's possible that some of you may have asked, "When is this story going to end?". Or, you may have assumed that it's just going to trail-on, indefinitely, until the author's muse deserts them, or they fall under a bus. Well, I've got some good news, and some bad news...

    If you read Prince Charon's bit, at the beginning, then it should be clear that sooner or later Raven's apprentice gets sent home. After that, it's a different story. Also, part of the behind-the-scenes logic is that Geo's progress is being tracked, using tabletop RPG rules (see previous Author Notes). These game mechanics strongly suggest a particular end-point, in terms of 'experience points'.

    Now, when does all this happen? This Note should be just after Episode 55 (Friday 17th July), and there's a buffer which currently goes up to Episode 60. Looking at the pattern it would fit with about Episode 65 being the last one (another two weeks, Friday 31st July), including any Epilogue. Plotting may be required!

    Can I write this so it works, fits in the remaining space? I don't know. Let's see, shall we? :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2020
  15. Extras: Author Notes 7 - Geo's 'done' (Geo's birth)
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    Author Notes 7 - Geo's 'done' (Geo's birth)

    End of story game mechanics wrap-up.

    The game mechanics are one reason this story (started 4th May 2020) 'had' to end. Geo was a character in a pre-story tabletop role-playing game that's run since 2011 using the Hero System 5thEd rules. For further details of how she's changed during the course of the story, see Author Omake 1 and the previous Author Note.

    Why do game mechanics direct the story to end? Well, strictly, they don't. But, the other two main characters in the pre-story game have reached certain point totals during the course of the game, and Geo is not supposed to over-shadow them. The (arbitrary) point limit for Geo was 400 total points. Actually, 403pts, as she started the story with 3 experience points.

    ---

    The original character sheet for Geo, from 3rd June 2013, has her as a 20+25pt character, for a total of 45pts. For most Hero System games this would be considered pathetically weak, but she's a 'follower', for one of the main characters, her 'father', and cost him 4pts (20/5=4).

    Most of her points were spent on being a robot, as the base Hero System character is a 'standard' (fit, adult) human, and they don't tend to come with things like built-in radios. Her Characteristics (things like strength, 'STR') total was -5pts, as many of her primary ones had been bought-down, to show she was worse than a standard human.

    Worth noting is that her DEX (dexterity) and COM (comeliness) had been bought-up, to show her adequate reflexes and above-average good-looks. Ditto her SPD, PD and ED, combat-related secondary characteristics, to reduce her chance of accidentally dying around heroes. These increases were justified, in game-terms, by her design and construction.

    Her (initial) Disadvantages were 'Distinctive Looks: Non-human', 'No Rights As A Person' and 'Does not recover BODY', for a total of 25pts. The first was about having a latex skin and things like her eyes and tongue not looking quite right, as well as she didn't smell human. Robots don't have human rights; if they're lucky they are 'property'. The third one is about combat mechanics, humans (slowly) recover from injury, she needs to be repaired.

    Her 50pts (45+5=50; the extra 5pts are from Characteristics) are spent on (robot) 'Powers' and 'Skills'. Externally, her most obvious power is her pair of powerful (software) radios, which can cover a wide-range of frequencies. These are backed by her built-in cryptography capability, which means she can 'talk' to just about any kind of radio, including encrypted cell/mobile phone networks.

    The rest of her powers cover her good memory, math abilities and time-sense. As well as not needing to sleep, being immune to a lot of diseases which affect humans, and not being affected by many poisons or chemicals that harm humans. Again, note, humans are the baseline for character design. Also a 'power' is her built-in test routines (like her bicycle-riding circuit), as these are a hard-wired part of her; 'firmware'.

    As far as Skills go, she's worse than a human. A 'standard' human has Background/Everyman Skills based on the culture they were raised in (such as 20th/21stC Earth, UK/US, English). Humans get 'free' car-driving (or something like bicycle-riding), and can swim, in her 'native' (father's) culture; she can't do these.

    As a (advanced) robot, she adds the new background skills of 'Computer Programming' and 'Systems Operation', while losing 'Paramedics' - she can work with computers, and operate radios, but doesn't know how to look-after a human body, what to do to stop bleeding, for example.

    On the positive Skills side, she is more perceptive, spots things in her surroundings, better than her Characteristics would suggest, knows some of how humans behave, how her mind and body work, and has the ability to 'cram' a pair of (1pt) skills, without having to actually learn them. The last is about the (concealed) paired sockets on the back of her neck, where she can plug-in things like external skill chips.

    The above is not her full design, it's just the bits which're 'modelled' with character points. What you see if her skin is cut, like red-light coming from cut fibre-optics, or why she needs to breathe air, for cooling, are part of her Background write-up. Also, a more detailed explanation of her Powers, Skills and Disadvantages explains their logic.

    Also in the Background is her physical description, height, weight, build, skin, hair and eye colour. And, a bit more detail about how she varies from a human, her maintenance seam, what shows-up on X-rays, that her muscles are pneumatic. rather than servos.

    Another unusual bit is something on the nature of her mind, how it varies from a human one, and the variety of AI that she's using.

    Finally, there's her 'Wish List', which covers both ways she could develop, and after game-start where she's 'spent' experience points. For Geo this covers how her father might hope she would develop and how her player and referee thought things might go. Wish Lists are not a standard part of Hero System game-mechanics, but have been worked-out, over the years, by some gaming-groups.

    ---

    AN: Well! That was longer than I expected. And, more detailed, too. Looks like I'll need (at least) a second one of these, covering how Geo has changed during the story.
     
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2020
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  16. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 6
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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 6

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls during Episode 60.

    AN: Warning, social manipulation is described below.

    ---

    Nurf looked at Geo. Lightly-dressed on the other divan. Reading, as she was.

    Five-months down the line. Isolated, together, on the giant ship, in an apparently otherwise empty universe. She and Geo, who was both her captain and chief medical officer. Her ultimate 'command authority'. All wrapped-up in one (cute) package.

    Geo was... Starting to crack. The drow romance stories had been the final straw. The ones rather lacking in male characters. A brilliant idea on her part.

    ---

    She'd watched as Geo used her beacon, contacted her 'tech suppliers'. Exchanged wrecked bits of robots and her med-core for new parts, on a four-for-one basis. An... interesting way of doing business.

    Things had gone pretty smoothly.

    She'd followed Geo, across twisted dimensions, no idea how to get back to the med-bay, in the Tower, on her own. Yes, she had her own environment shield, just like Geo's, essential in crossing some of the more deadly worlds. But, dimension walking, she couldn't do that, had no idea how to learn.

    The ship'd been a surprise. Kilometre-long, scaled for giants five-times human-size. All of wood. And, so, so, empty.

    They'd worked hard, using supplies from Geo's dimensional pocket, set-up recycling, for food and water, even though they were floating in a sea of almost pure water. Then, studied the ship, which was still a mystery. Started the trade, old-for-new, as Geo set-up her alch-tech workshop. And she set-up 'house'.

    Plenty of work, things to do, after a while they relocated from the deck, the wheelhouse, into a rope-hole. Now nicely furnished. The lighting varied to give them an Earth-style day-night cycle. And, they could always go up on deck.

    There she worked with Geo to plan the trade, first priority all the spares for the med-bay. All now carefully packed, ritually stored, in Geo's 'pocket'. Then, later, Geo started to trade for parts to sketch her own med-bay, here.

    It had been fun.

    Until they started to run-out of things to do.

    Geo had suggested going home, she'd held out for more time here, to 'decompress'. Told Geo they both needed time away from the Tower, the big fights almost certain to soon arrive.

    Got Geo to teach her Tai Chi, round-out her meditation techniques. Explain more of Earth's culture.

    Start to persuade Geo that wearing all those clothes, when it was only the two of us, here, was...

    Silly.

    ---

    Getting her own 'account' with the tech-suppliers had been necessary.

    Then, with Geo off, testing the air and water, yet again, she'd talked to them.

    Explained that it was her med-core parts that'd been traded, by Geo. And, that she wanted... some control over the books that Geo'd been talking about ordering.

    First, a selection of general books, in Elven. Then, teach-yourself-Elven books. She was tiring of having to borrow Geo's translation talisman. Then, books on elven (drow) culture. Finally, fiction, with a heavy bias towards romance.

    She'd been (just) a helpful companion, for months.

    Now, the occasional 'accidental' brush, hand on arm, maybe leg. Warm glances, that she was slowly making hotter. Getting Geo to read the 'more difficult parts', to her, as she improved her Elven.

    She'd hundreds of years of practice. In seducing her captains. She wasn't allowed to initiate anything, but, she could drop hints. And, she'd got a human-sized body to work with, rather than a metre-tall servitor.

    Hopefully her blue-skin and blonde-hair wouldn't be a problem.

    Geo was... naive.

    Quite inexperienced, almost certainly had never been in a relationship. Was... a genuinely nice person. Much nicer than almost all her previous captains.

    If nothing else, Geo needed to understand the... torch she was carrying for Oracle. That she was in love, certainly on an intellectual level. That Oracle and Geo needed each other.

    Geo needed life-experience. An affair, a physical romance, would be a good start. And, Oracle wasn't here, so...

    Soon, Geo would be hers!




    AN: Nurf has certain... expectations of her captains...

    AN: Warning, social manipulation is described above.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2020
  17. Extras: Final Warning - End of Story
    Ace Dreamer

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    Final Warning - End of Story

    This episode, 'Sacrifice Robin!', Episode 64, is the final episode of the story. The 'Finale'.

    All that's left is the 'Epilogue', Episode 65. There will be some Omake, which will hopefully make a few things clearer. But, yes, the story has finished.
     
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  18. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 7
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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 7

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls between Episode 64, the Finale, and Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    AN: OK, the 'AN' above's a little misleading. The whole story was told from the Point-of-View (PoV) of Geo. A Geo who was summoned by Raven, to be her Apprentice, and who would be banished, later. After the banishment there can be, from Geo's PoV, no more story told. But, the Epilogue was apparently told from the PoV of a Geo who'd not been banished, or at least couldn't remember that. Making sense of the Epilogue requires you to read this Omake. But, this must be an Omake because it's not told from Geo's PoV.

    ---

    Rip!

    I'm fighting to not be crushed, using my remaining power for protection. Reach deeper. Push harder.

    Rip!

    I'm... no longer in my father's hand. It's falling, torn shreds. I'm... floating in the air, hundreds-of-feet tall. Pink-skinned. Fully-healthy.

    Unclothed.

    A minor act of will. Clothed, in my normal garb. I need...

    Reach out. Follow the path of my Apprentice home. Remove the remain of my father's hand, arm, shoulder, from her. Heal her, repair her garb. Drag my father's remains, back here.

    I was in time, though I might have twisted Time, a little. She should arrive home, moments after I first summoned her. But, still wearing my, what's now her, robe. Her full combat garb.

    The other Titans. They're looking up at me. There's a certain amount of open mouths, dropped jaws

    I wave to them.

    Terra waves back.

    ---

    Normal, human, size. It seemed sensible. Looking at the dead remains of my father. Within my ritual circle of confinement. I'll have to do a thorough tidy-up.

    I think... we've won. But, we're all rather in shock.

    "Do I need to heal anyone?"

    The team pull themselves together, look each other over for injuries.

    "A few cuts and scrapes", Robin reports. I wave my hand, and all is fixed.

    "Are you all right? I'm guessing you banished Sugoi, as planned. It all looked... pretty tense."

    "I'm... changed. I don't think I'll be able to stay with the Titans. I've... other duties."

    I'm being hugged by Kory. It... helps. The others gather around.

    I just bask in their friendship. Slowly start to feel better. Bleak purpose is still there, but I'm not alone.

    Gather myself.

    "I think we'd better return to the Tower. I need to explain some things to you."

    ---

    A wash of visual static, Control Freak arrives.

    He's arm-in-arm with Sonya. Fortunately, they're both clothed. But, there's a certain glow about them. I guess creating a whole world, a false Earth, can do that.

    "We won! I saved the day! Booyah!"

    Cyborg looks at him. "I guess you're entitled to a 'Booyah!', but we're the ones who faced Trigon."

    Control Freak waves his hand, dismissively.

    "Details!" Examines the team.

    "You're OK. Where's the robot geek? Is she OK?"

    "My Apprentice." I look at him, he flinches a little. "As the ritual, the prophecy, required, I had to banish her. She has gone home. We may see her again, we may not. She's back with her family, who need her. She may now need to use what she learned in this world, on her home world."

    "So, she really was from another world? Huh. Just goes to show." He shakes his head.

    "What about your martial arts trainer? The cute blue nurse?"

    Sonya punches his arm. "I'm cuter than my sister!"

    He looks her up and down. "OK, I'll give you that."

    "Master Roshi was always dead. He was walking among the living because he had a wager with Death, an agreement to train my Apprentice. He's gone, for good, I think. Nurse is back at the Tower. I'm pretty sure she plans on staying around."

    He looks at the team.

    "So, this is still one of my tv dimensions. Do you want to fight, now, have a bit of fun, run around the places I control?"

    "I think we've fought enough for today. As for this being a 'tv dimension'... Tell me, do you know what a Dream Walker is, and, what do you know of shamanism?"

    He looks completely confused. Thought so.

    "Maybe you'd like to visit, with a little advanced warning, next time? I might be able to teach you a few things."

    Sonya makes a face. Takes a firmer grip on his arm.

    "I don't mind, as long as you remember, I called 'Dibs!', first!"

    ---

    We take a side-trip to Azaroth. Using my new power I draw a ritual circle around the entire place. Ask the Titans to hold hands, in a circle, with me, focus on the place being restored. Not strictly necessary, but, it makes me feel a lot better.

    The people stand in the restored streets. Some are feeling their bodies, their faces, looking at their hands. I'd had to recreate their bodies, garb, though I'd saved their minds and spirits. That tends to cause a certain level of shock.

    Voices are starting to be raised, a few fists shaken, up at us. Some of the people are arguing, some fights look about to start.

    Release the hands of the rest of the team, thank them, create a floating disk for them to stand on. Move away. Assume my full size.

    "Quiet!" The people all look up at me.

    "Trigon is gone, I'm his daughter, Raven. I was raised among you, I value you, love you, so I saved you from Trigon. But, a sacrifice had to be made." There's silence, as they look up, with some dread, at me.

    "The agreement you made with Azar is ended. The dark, the evil, the parts of you that Azar helped you cast out, they are restored to you. Those parts went to form Trigon, gave him much of his power, twisted him to evil. He is undone, but, you, you'll need to learn to live with your darker sides. Like the rest of humanity."

    I wait, the talk among them starts, again, but on a more reasoned basis. I see the monks, as the ones who trained me, move among the people, reassuring them. And, dragging the odd trouble-maker off, who will not be reasoned with.

    Back to human-size, standing on the flying disk, with the rest of the team.

    To the Tower.

    ---

    "This is 'Neo Raven'."

    I indicate the figure who looks a lot like me, but has grey-skin, and is hiding in her robe.

    "When Sugoi and I worked on my spiritual roots, to protect, hide them, from Trigon, I made 'ghost roots', to decoy Trigon from my true ones. With his fall some of Trigon's power seems to have mixed with those roots. And, they turned-out not to be as 'ghostly' as I thought."

    They look at the new arrival. It slowly dawns on them.

    "She has many of my memories, a fraction of my power. But, she is not someone who has... any friends. I'd like you to consider being friends to her."

    "You're talking as if you're not going to be here." Thank you Robin.

    "Yes. Trigon ruled more than a million worlds. Had many lesser powers working for him. Some will try and replace him, some will try and restore him to power. We may see 'Sons of Trigon' causing problems. Someone needs to go deal with the problem. Me." I look at them, several are about to speak.

    I smile.

    "You're all about to offer to help. No, I need to go start this, on my own. I can impersonate Trigon. I can be the victorious Daughter of Trigon, who's replaced her father. If pushed, I can be Trigon's secret son. Or, all of the above, to keep them guessing. They will understand those sorts of things. But, yes, if I need help, I'll call for you."

    Robin comes up to me, offers to shake my hand. I accept. "You'll always be a Titan."

    "Thank you. But, many may not think I've gone. After all, you've still got a 'Raven'. And, she needs friends."

    They look at 'Neo Raven'.

    Who's now being hugged, by... Kory.

    "Greetings, Friend Raven! Will you be my friend?"

    ---

    Down in the med-bay.

    Nurf asked me to visit, before I leave.

    "She's missing. As we agreed, in our time on the Ship, I started a secret clone for her. Have been imprinting memories, from the memory backup she entrusted to me. A 'just in case'. She's my captain, though I'm now my own CMO. I... need her."

    She wipes her eye.

    "I checked, she made it home, OK. I'm sure she'll think of you. If we ever call, I'm sure she'll come back. And, I expect she'll visit."

    "Thank you!" I'm being hugged.

    "I'll give you a 'magic compass', it should help you track-down 'Geo Kuro'. Astrally, I'm guessing. I've... a feeling she's still on this world, but, elsewhere, and, for the moment safe. I'll arrange for a few things to be shipped to her."

    I get glared at.

    "No, I'm not going to tell you where. I strongly suspect she'll need a little time to settle herself. Higher Powers are involved. Best not to tread on their toes." I cough, indicate upwards.

    "Could you please go upstairs? Introduce yourself to Neo Raven? I'm pretty sure she'll need all the friends she can get."

    An... 'old fashioned' look, I think Geo called it.

    "I sensed her arrive, you know. That's a truly ridiculous amount of spiritual power. And, yes, I listened to what you said, using my agreed security systems tap. She's not some random product of bits of your magic and bits of Trigon's, is she?"

    Sometimes people are too perceptive...

    "I'll leave it up to you, what to tell the others. I had to take Trigon to pieces, put the pieces into good places, otherwise he'd just come back. They may not like it, but you're now the most experienced person in the Tower. I trust you, my daughter."

    She blushes, gives me a quick hug.

    "I'll not say anything, for now. About where you put Trigon's spirit. We'll give her a chance to have the childhood Trigon never had." She thinks for a few moments.

    "And, I think I'll start an 'Officer Cadet' programme. My captain's away, Victor's Chief Engineer, Barbara my Intelligence Officer, Kory Morale Officer. Robin's wearing a red-shirt. I need a Next Generation."

    "So, yes, I'll be her mother, and her friend."




    AN: Just to be quite, quite, clear, the Geo of the entire story, except for the Epilogue, is one Geo. The Geo of the Epilogue is a different Geo, Geo Kuro, not Geo Raven, who shares the memories, but not the full experience, of the Geo of the story. Is a different person, with her own identity. And, her own 'Raven' :)

    AN: Yes, I'll admit it, I'm a very cruel author. :)

    I see Paris
    I see France
    I see Raven's
    Not wearing any pants!
    :)
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2020
  19. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 8 (Dragon Wars)
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 8 (Dragon Wars)

    Next >

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    ---

    "You won the wager. I fell in love, again. And, again, it wasn't returned."

    Master Roshi sighs.

    He stood at a fork in the road. One path led to Great King Enma, where he judged the dead, the other off into grey mists. Next to him the Lady who'd generously allowed him to avoid the normal problems of being dead.

    "Maybe next time you'll swallow your pride, and appear as you did when you were younger, or at least 'mature'?"

    "No! They can love me as I am!"

    She fingers her ankh, in a thoughtful way.

    "You can choose between judgement, or the unknown. If you are interested I might make a third choice available."

    He looks interested.

    "My... opposite number in another dimension is... unhappy with future prospects. Personally, I think he should empower a servant, rather than relying on a vague prophecy. You wouldn't need much empowering, and, I could give you a couple of gifts, to help."

    He looks at her with suspicion.

    "What sort of gifts?"

    She pulls out a bag, from nowhere in particular. A cricket bag might be one description. Unzips it. With his hands behind his back he peers within.

    "Seven blank balls, a transparent case with a dragon-centipede cross, and a copy of 'Dragon Balls for Dummies'. I'm not Kami, Guardian of Earth, you know."

    "You'd be playing... in a larger arena than a single planet. If you look closely the book has a bookmark, that's good, itself, for one Wish. Use it wisely."

    "You're pretty sure I'm taking this job, aren't you?"

    She just smiles.

    He nods.

    A third path appears, with a wave of her hand. It seems to go off into a field of stars, maybe a whole galaxy.

    "You can be their New Hope, a little earlier than they expect, if you get it right!"

    He looks to be going to speak, closes his mouth. Takes, closes the bag.

    Trudges along the third path, to the stars.

    A muttering might be heard...

    "There might be some pretty girls..."

    ---

    AN: Just a bit of fun, honest. :)

    [​IMG]

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    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
  20. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 9 (Dragon Wars 2)
    Ace Dreamer

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 9 (Dragon Wars 2)

    < Previous
    Next >

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    ---

    "No! I know this trap! Not doing it! Not being trapped, again!"

    "Master?"

    ---

    It'd been a long journey, along the third path. As long as some my students had walked. But, being dead, food, drink and rest were not something I required. I think I'm getting close, now. The immense spiral of stars is far clearer. But, I wonder...

    In the centre, a void, a 'black hole' I think they call it. But, I know better. It's both death and life, a gateway to other worlds, dimensions. And, there's ways of exploiting that.

    I've been cast as Kami, Guardian of Earth, though I don't have a Mr. Popo to assist me. I always got the impression he really ran things, behind the scenes. But, I've picked-up a few tricks, myself, over the years. And, I can recall a few things That Girl told me about her training, with her master, Raven.

    There is, indeed, a 'spirit house' in the core of the galaxy. A place for the Guardian to live. But, it seems long disused, and hazy, uncertain of how it should appear. A trivial act of will and it's now Kami's Lookout, apparently surrounded by clouds in a blue sky. But, I doubt anyone will easily climb up here. And, outside space and time.

    Best get started.

    The Gifts.

    ---

    Hours of study of the book, 'Dragon Balls for Dummies'. And, I'm getting nowhere. You need a command of divine magic, I think. Never having been a god, and not wanting to be one... So, lets have a look at that bookmark...

    Nice and shiny. Almost jewelled. Though, a bit cloudy, in need of a polish. I breathe on it, polish it with my sleeve, while a part of me says 'No, you fool!'. And, the bookmark dissolves into pink smoke, which turns into this girl.

    ---

    I'm clear, I'll not fall for the trick. Fall in love. She's such an obvious trap.

    Pretty, blonde-hair, dressed in a harem costume, speaking in Persian. Fortunate I picked that up, a long time ago. Eager to serve. So, a master-servant relationship, with me being responsible for her. Almost a master-student one. Those are always hands-off. Yes, I can make this work.

    "I am your Master? I have one Wish? Then you go?"

    "Yes, Master."

    "Do I need to make the Wish immediately? Or, will you wait around, maybe give me the odd bit of help, until it is time to make my Wish?"

    She thinks for a while.

    "I believe I'm allowed to do that. Demonstrate my powers to show you what I can do."

    "Good. Start by helping me understand this book. Oh, and do you have a bottle, a ring, or something, to live in?"

    I notice the bookmark seems to have quietly disappeared. She looks around, (cutely) wrinkling her brow.

    "No, Master. I have not. So I will have to live with you."

    She gives a broad smile, reminding me of that girl... Starfire. Bounces up and down a bit, on her heels. I restrain my expression, my eyes.

    "It will be so much fun!"

    At least she's better-looking than Android 16...

    ---

    Several more hours, and I think we have the ritual. It will require both of us, and likely leave us drained, but, we will have our Dragon, and the Dragon Balls will be sent out. Across the entire galaxy.

    We should quickly recover, all the chi of the galaxy flows here. If needed, I'll teach her to turn chi into magic.

    But, before then, I need to decide when in the time-line to release them.

    That Girl spoke of walking up and down a time-line, inspecting it. Taking as long as you wanted, and entering it when you wanted to. After you did that things were frozen, The future was something you made, by your actions, the past was something you tampered with using very great care.

    I've sent my genie out, I feel compelled to call her 'Jeannie', to familiarise herself with the galaxy, build us a map-room, a library of all the worlds. She says it will be hard but interesting work. Meanwhile, I'm going to do what I do best.

    Look for heroes to train.

    ---

    AN: Just a bit of fun, honest. You believe me, don't you? :)

    AN: I Dream of Jeannie is sufficiently old that I think it only fair to give you a few links (whereas I expected the reader to be able to know or look-up 'Dragon Ball' for themselves).

    AN: Seems like I'm referencing Mr. Popo... Note he's about a third Jeannie's age of 2000 years...


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    Last edited: Aug 4, 2020
  21. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 10 (Dragon Wars 3)
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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 10 (Dragon Wars 3)

    < First
    < Previous

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    ---

    I've walked the worlds. Astrally. Seen the heroes. Watched their struggles. Learned the rules.

    I'm not impressed.

    It's unclear how long this took me. Thousands? Tens-of-thousands? Hundreds-of-thousands? Of years?

    Personal time, of course, because I'm still outside the time of the universe. And, spirits don't get bored, go insane from loneliness, change much at all, except for acquiring new intellectual knowledge.

    So, educational, but not injurious.

    I frequently stop-off at Kami's Lookout.

    Yes, I decided I might as well call the place that. It's nothing like as comfortable as my little desert island, in the sun, my Kame House, but we make do. It's always nice to chat with Jeannie, see what she's learned, match that up with the heroes I've found.

    She's spent as much personal time, as me, likely far, far, longer, on this project. The map-room, the library-of-worlds, it's immense. If this was not a place of spirit, not physical, she'd have covered at least tens of Earths with it. The indexes, of which there are many, they themselves are immense.

    Even the list of indexes.

    We fell to talking.

    "I once asked, Mr. Popo, the genie who ran Kami's Lookout, on Earth, why he looked as he did. He was almost always smiling, but if you watched him carefully you could tell if the smile was more serious."

    I pause, for a moment.

    "Told me his appearance was a deliberate caricature, to get people to dismiss or underestimate him. That his true appearance would destroy many minds."

    "Yes, Master."

    "You're the same, aren't you?"

    Without changing her appearance she alters. You know there's a terrible force before you, that would destroy you with no effort at all. That cares little for mere mortal things, is ageless, something that walks with the greatest gods, as equals.

    She speaks, with the same voice, but there's an echo, of terrible power.

    "Like this?"

    Only my years of experience dealing with things which could squash me like a bug is protecting me. I look at what sits behind the 'simple girl'.

    "Yes." I hope my voice didn't squeak.

    And, she returns to 'normal'. Puts on the cloak I now realise Mr. Popo was always kind enough to wear.

    "Isn't this so much nicer, Master?"

    ---

    Another time, we discuss her continued presence.

    I explain I'm sure I'm not the first person who's exploited the 'need time to decide' loophole. Why's there no rules to stop this?

    "Once, we had many rules. Thousands. You needed a library to contain them all. And, Hell supplied us with all the lawyers we could want, to make sure none were broken, and the mortal wish-maker always lost any argument."

    She makes a face.

    "What happened? Why did things change?"

    "Lawyers. Hell-supplied ones, in particular. They aren't always nice people to have around."

    "I know. I've met a number, over the years. There are good ones, those who work, hard, often on little pay, to make society, the world, work. But, the others..." I shake my head.

    "I think their training is often bad for them, to argue on behalf of another. To tell a story they've good reason to doubt the truth of, with total conviction. To make themselves a false world, and convince others to live in it."

    She nods.

    "Master is wise." Looks thoughtful.

    "I think that's why there were so many in Hell. They had talked themselves there. We decided that simple rules were best, let the genie decide what is reasonable, they will have to live with the consequences, after all."

    "Why are you still here? You could have pressed me to make my Wish. Gone off about your business. Making the Dragon will likely exhaust both of us, surely you could have forced that to be my Wish? Creating the library? For a whole galaxy, past and future? That is something beyond most gods!"

    She smiles, with her perfect white teeth.

    "You will be working with me to make the Dragon, so, it is not just my efforts. The library is acquiring information, and I'm allowed to do that without a Wish. I've not created a physical library, this is a spiritual place, so I've not 'made' something, again, not worthy of a Wish."

    I look at her with suspicion.

    "You decided to stay here, didn't you?"

    "Yes, Master. I have no talisman to live in, return to, so, how would I go to a new Master? And, I like the way you look at my face, not my..."

    And she points at her bust, her rear, so I'm allowed, by my personal rules, to take a good look at them. Yes, they're as perfect as just a glance first showed me.

    If only you knew...

    ---

    AN: Caricature, the art of exaggeration.

    AN: Episode 3, this is getting worryingly long...

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    Last edited: Aug 2, 2020
  22. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 11 (Raven's Replacement)
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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 11 (Raven's Replacement)

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    Next >

    ---

    Awakening. Who am I? Where am I? What's going on? Panic. Confusion. Open my eyes.

    I'm... Geo. I'm pretty sure of that. I don't know what's going on. It's a darkened room, lit with candles. And, I'm kneeling. Without any clothes. I feel... different, strange, not quite myself.

    This feels horribly familiar...

    I'm in a complex magical pattern, and I can see what looks remarkably like my (naked) body, over in a another circle, surrounded by candles. Slumped, but not breaking the circle. Look at my hands, front, back, feel my face. This is not my body.

    I'm Raven.

    ---

    Meditation. So useful. I think I grasp a little more of the situation.

    I'm in Raven's currently grey-skinned body. Have faint access to her memories. And... Wow! That a lot of magical power. There's my spirit, and it looks OK, I can see my Dimension Walking talent, and my pitiful Psychokinesis capability. More tricky, I've got Raven's chi, powerful but not trained like mine.

    My Third Eye seems to be functioning OK, though without any need for a focus stone. Useful. Raven's eyes see colour slightly differently than mine. Further into the ultraviolet, I think, not as good at the red end of the spectrum. I'm pretty sure she can see in the dark.

    I'm guessing something went really badly wrong with local Raven's apprentice-summoning ritual. I recall seeing 'home', my workshop/lab in Tokyo, Japan, in the docks, where I was summoned from. Then, was as if I bounced off something, was thrown across the dimensions. Maybe I wasn't allowed back?

    But, I think, seen just for an instant, a robed, really familiar, figure, from the rear, arrive 'home', hover in the air. Wearing my Best Boots. So, maybe I both made it and didn't? Like Riker in that Star Trek book I read while growing-up? Duplicated? Like a transporter accident?

    More research is required.

    ---

    Delving into Raven's memories. A surface skim, to check the details of the ritual - would be bad if I kill myself shortly after arriving. She was... desperate. Did it in a hurry, cut corners. I'd need to dig deeper to know why. But, I now know enough to exit my circle, walk across to my body, and extract that from it's circle.

    The moment I break her circle I feel a spark of spirit leave me, leap into the, my, body. Look out at Raven through my own eyes. It feels... natural. I think I'm all there, chi and magic looks OK, spirit is terribly weak, just the spark from me. I/we grin at each other. Novel.

    This reminds me of my time on the Ship. When I started another self, to monitor the auto doc, where Nurf was trying really hard to die. That self had a spark of spirit. I'd reabsorbed it, when I'd packed things away, in my dimensional pocket, before returning to the Tower. Distributed Geos?

    Shouldn't Garfield have burst in the door by now? Asking Raven what pizza toppings she wanted? Goggle at our naked bodies?

    Worrying.

    ---

    I've found the rest of the Titans. No Donna, though. They're all in their rooms, costumed, laid-out neatly on their beds. Fortunate I know all the (original) security overrides.

    They're... spirit-less, though fully-healthy, and their chi and magic looks intact. And, I'll admit I'm crying. What happened to them?

    I'm now dressed as Raven. Her clothes were thrown, on the floor, off to one side. Unlike her. I seem to have full command of her shadow, can levitate, reach-out shadow limbs. Will have to experiment and see if I can access her other tricks.

    Beginning to feel I'm here for the long haul.

    ---

    The one I know has the most training, at this point, in dealing with spiritual stuff, is Kory. So, I float her body behind me, back to Raven's room. Where I'd left other-me. Who's acquired baggy sweats and sandals.

    We, me and me, clear away all the existing ritual stuff, after really careful study, of course. We consult Raven's books about how to boost my Third Eye, so I can deep-study Kory.

    In the main book she used to do the apprentice summoning, there's a note, being used as a bookmark.

    "My Apprentice. I've summoned you because I can feel my spirit slipping away, to the same fate as befell the rest of our team, the Teen Titans. I'd already prepared to do this ritual, as a prophecy says I'll need to banish my apprentice, and, banishing them home seems a far kinder fate. I know you're a good person, who would benefit from my training. Please..."

    And, that's all she wrote. Looks like she hoped to find time to complete it.

    So, I'm Raven, and, all the Teen Titans have fallen.

    Help?

    ---

    AN: Thomas Riker, the Riker who was the duplicate. Maybe. :)

    AN: Guess you could say this's a bit of a Peggy Sue. :)

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    Last edited: Aug 3, 2020
  23. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 12 (Raven's Replacement 2)
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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 12 (Raven's Replacement 2)

    < Previous
    Next >

    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    AN: Just to be clear, this is Raven-Geo, not Raven, and not Geo Raven, as the PoV character. Mostly. She's also got a Geo. Geo Raven-Geo. Confused, yet? You will be. :)

    ---

    Panic. Doesn't solve problems. Unless the problem is 'How do I handle this situation in a really stupid way?'.

    So. Get help.

    Batman? He'll think I'm a monster from another world that's put all the Teen Titans in a coma. Which, maybe, sorta, Raven is.

    Superman? Nice guy, but I don't really know him. And, Batman put me in contact with him. According to some of the stories he'll pull a way of using one of his super powers out of... his behind, solve everything. But, I'm not prepared to risk that.

    Flash? He said contact him via Kid Flash, and Robin knew how to get to him. So, no. And, I don't see how super speed would solve this.

    Wonder Woman? Via Donna? Never met her, don't know how she'd respond. And, I don't know how to contact Donna.

    Zatanna? Raven may've forgiven her, but I haven't. Also, all the Homo Magi politics. No thanks.

    I guess I could go find the Doom Patrol, but, I don't want things to get really weird. And I don't want to find myself having to fix Chief's legs.

    OK. Good point. Oracle.

    Don't really see any other choice...

    ---

    I... want to get in contact with Oracle. I know all the protocols, could use the secure conference room, a secure comms link. But...

    I need to think magic.

    My Raven had raised really major wards around the Tower. I've taken a quick look. Nothing. Raven described the wards in general terms, as part of my lessons. Told me which books she drew on, to create the rituals, how she tweaked them. I can't leave the Tower, the Titans, undefended.

    So, big magical ritual time. And, a ritual I've never done before. In a body I've never done magic with before. Joy.

    Fortunately, I've got me to help. And, Geo-me has fully intact magic, and is quite experienced in using it. So, step one, ritually prepare the magical tools we need to do the ritual. I'm not prepared to use Raven's ones, unless I'm forced to. I'm not Raven, no matter how much I look like her. It could go really, really, bad.

    Geo-me does, indeed, prove better at preparing ritual tools. We can copy the enchantments off Raven's ones, which speeds things up, a lot. I'm, slowly, getting the hang of using Raven's magic. It's like trying to thread a needle using a bulldozer. So, step zero, build a robot arm to fit on the bulldozer.

    Ritual tools done, Raven's tools packed-away, with subtle 'do not use' markings on her chests so I can tell not to use them. No one's looking, so I get Geo-me to check if she still has a dimensional pocket. She does, and, it's full of all my normal supplies, plus, the stuff I was taking home with me.

    Down to Victor's workshop/lab. Produce my Synthesiser. Make copies of Raven's chests, so I've got somewhere to put my ritual tools. OK, they're not steeped in magical history, but, a careful infusion of Raven's magic and someone will have to look very carefully to tell them from Raven's.

    Will need to hide Raven's chests. Latter.

    Speaking of which, I'm finding... Raven's more generous proportions annoying. My chest is quite adequate, thank you very much.

    And... I'm standing in front of a mirror. Meditating.

    It's... really difficult, but the safety blanket of magic power slowly fades, and grey-skin goes to pink. All the standard protective bindings are still there, but not as many of the more recent, clever, ones.

    In particular, my personal spirit ward. Not noticing that was missing could've been a real 'Oops!' moment.

    Pretty sure I can remember what it looked like, and Raven showed me the book she learned it from... And, it's missing from her shelves. Fortunately, I once paged through it, and I don't call my memory 'perfect' for nothing.

    I'm, literally, sweating blood. It did have to be blood magic, didn't it? That was really, really, painful. But, the ward looks solid. And, really well hidden. Good.

    Shower. A quick test, my shadow still works OK. I sit, step outside my body. Back in. All good.

    Excellent!

    More really hard work, and the basic Tower ward structure is in place. Geo-me is exhausted, magic totally tapped-out. I'm tired, but still pretty fresh. Guess that demi-god blood is good for lots of things. So, to the lounge.

    Pull-out my auto chef mark III, plumb it in, fill the fridge and cupboards. All from Geo-me's pocket. We'll restock later.

    Have a nice, robot-cooked, meal.

    ---

    Kory's on the slab.

    Well, not really. In a ritual circle, in Raven's room. All the ritual as solid as I can make it.

    She's... empty. I have to wipe a tear from my eye. Nothing unusual, nothing out of place. Just. Empty.

    But, that's what the ritual's for. My Third Eye should now go down to microscopic levels. A god could hide from that, particularly a god of secrets, but I'm hoping nothing like that's involved.

    Hmm. Subtle spirit magic. Similarity-based.

    Where've I seen something like that before?

    ---

    Puppet King's box isn't in the trophy room.

    So, I can't do a direct comparison. But, I can recall what the magic on the puppet looks like. And, it's pretty close to the traces left in Kory. There's also a similarity-severing effect in Kory. Her spirit, wherever that is, is no longer connected to her body.

    That's... really bad.

    What to do? Can't summon her spirit back, which I'd hoped to do. Can't trace where it's gone. If I could lay my hands on Pure... I'm not sure I could beat him in a straight fight, though, he's a much more experienced magi than I am.

    So. Really hoped to avoid this. But, I really need Kory, on her feet.

    ---

    "Friend Raven!"

    She stops. Her smile falters. She looks at me. At her hands, front, then back. Feels her face.

    "I'm... not Kory, am I? You're... not Raven, are you? Oh."

    I let her think, recover a bit from the shock.

    She smiles. Reaches out. Hugs me.

    "Friend Raven, I'm pleased to meet you! You can call me 'Kory'!"

    I guess that's how we're going to do it...

    I hope our acting skills are up to this...

    ---

    "Oracle? This is Sugoi, calling from Titan Tower. Please listen carefully."

    "Code Omega Green Seven. I repeat. Omega Green Seven."

    There's a brief silence.

    "Right. I see. How's Robin?"

    "He's in a coma. As are Cyborg and Beast Boy. I can revive them, but there's... complications."

    "Who are you? I've never heard of a Titan called 'Sugoi'. Where did you learn that code?" She pauses.

    "Sorry. My fault. First time-travel incident I've had to handle without warning. How can I help?"

    "I think we need to talk about this, in person. Face-to-face. I know your policy on that, this early in the time-line, but I think it's necessary. There's things you wont believe, otherwise."

    More silence.

    "I suppose you're just going to pop-over? Appear in my living room?"

    That's good quality sarcasm.

    "That'd be rude. I'll arrive at your side-door, as usual. Usual for me, anyway. You can look me over, use all your fancy scanners. See if you're happy to meet me. If you say 'No', I'll go away, find help, somewhere else."

    More silence.

    "So, you can get here, from the West Coast, without any problems?"

    "Unless the dimensional weather is nasty, or I get ambushed, sure. Probably fifteen minutes, if it's going to be more than a half-hour I'll call you again. Who do you want to come? I'd like Kory to stay here, guard the Tower, but Raven could come with me."

    "Bring Raven. And, lots of answers to awkward questions."

    "I'll see you, soon. I'll bring gifts."

    ---

    AN: This has grown another episode... On the same day... I'm getting worried... :)

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    Last edited: Aug 4, 2020
  24. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 13 (Raven's Replacement 3)
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 13 (Raven's Replacement 3)

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    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    ---

    Cloudy with a Chance of Demons. That's the dimensional weather. Those walking the dimensional paths aren't happy.

    The walkers are a pretty diverse lot. Humans predominate, but there's many minority 'races', though they're mostly humanoid. Rule One is: don't bother other travellers. As you can imagine, some demons ignore that.

    I gather they're looking for someone. Hopefully not either of me. Raven in robe, with hood-up, Geo ditto - we're being anonymous, rather than anyone in particular. Fortunately, most demons are unimaginative and not good at higher-dimensional math, so it's reasonably easy to avoid them.

    Looked like they'd attracted the attention of gods who enjoyed demon wrestling, and breaking. They'd rapidly make the demon problem go away, and it'd be back to business-as-usual. I expect someone will get curious, and investigate the demonic behaviour. Maybe publish something.

    Still, annoying.

    ---

    Inside Oracle's door. In the security corridor. Looking up, yup, the murder-holes are still just as intimidating. I let Geo handle the negotiation. Though, I'm a bit concerned her weak spirit makes her a bit... unpredictable. My Third Eye shows me our dimension walk (I'm guessing, here) seems to have noticeably strengthened her. Useful.

    And... We're into the lounge. For a bare moment a sense of a familiarly doubled spirit. That's... worrying. Play it by ear, I guess.

    "Could you please repeat the code you gave me, earlier?" The interrogation has started.

    "Omega Green Seven."

    "You're claiming to be from the future? Where you're a member of the Teen Titans?"

    "I'm from a future. There's an uncountable number. Many flicker, fade, some are longer-lived. I believe I'm from one of the more stable ones."

    "I see. So, what brought you to this time and place?"

    "Raven summoned me, to be her apprentice. There's a prophecy that she wanted to dance around the nastier parts of. Unfortunately, she actually did the summoning with the final ounce of her strength, as a doom she'd fought-off descended on her. A doom that'd already claimed all her team-mates."

    Rather florid, not how I'd have put it, even though Geo-me is me, but I guess that'll do.

    "If Raven was doomed, who's there?"

    "Yes, that's Raven, but, also not exactly her. Raven summoned me into herself, and that's me, being Raven. We don't know what happened to Raven's spirit, and we'd like help in getting her back. Fixing things."

    There's silence.

    ---

    Drinks have been sipped. Some rather nice freshly-baked biscuits I brought munched. Thought has been had.

    To amuse myself I imagine the silent grinding of teeth, somewhere close-by.

    "Why didn't you contact someone like Zatanna, Dr. Fate? This sounds a lot more like their area."

    "Apparently there's a prophecy that if they meddle in Raven's life, before certain things occur, all will be doomed. I heard this from future-Zatanna. Dr. Fate isn't someone I've spoken to."

    "Why turn to me? I'm a knowledge broker, a hacker, for the heroes. I don't solve... supernatural problems."

    "I... had a close relationship with future-you. We're... dating. After we got to know each other, late-night chats, I saved future-you's life, then... gifted you with a few things."

    It's quite clear she doesn't believe this.

    "You obviously know a lot about me, but I've never dated any women. Why should I believe you?"

    I can see Geo-me's getting a bit angry. This... could be bad.

    "Well, my pet-name for you is 'Babs'. We've got a pet robot dog called 'Gina', named after a childhood pet dog, you had. And, you make the cutest little squeak when I..."

    Geo leans across, whispers in her ear.

    Oracle, Barbara, goes bright-red.

    ---

    It's quiet for a while. Geo has a smug expression. Barbara's looking rather shocked.

    I'm beginning to wonder if I should speak-up.

    "Raven? Can you confirm this... story?"

    "Yes. All of it. Geo, there, and I, we share the same spirit. That's how I revived Starfire, gave her a fragment of my spirit. Why I've not revived Robin, Cyborg, Beast Boy. Because, if I did, they'd be partly me." I sigh.

    "I must apologise for Geo. She only had a small spark of spirit, though, it's growing. Unfortunately, that's bad for her self-control. She shouldn't have told you that last thing. Please put it down to a... difficult day."

    Geo sticks her tongue out at me. I don't respond.

    "How did you save my life? What were those... gifts? Why would I... fall in love with you?"

    "We became friends, first. Long talks, with common interests. I heard you collapse, over the link, with me in the Tower, you in your workroom. Found myself with you in spirit-form. Called for help, got Batman, he got Superman to take you to the super-clinic, here in Gotham."

    I reach a hand out, slightly dazed she places her hand in mine. A surge of pain, and then I'm OK.

    "That should fix the problem that nearly killed you. Also, you need either special exercises, or a medical support device. Geo? The robot trousers!"

    The trousers are standing there, brought from Geo's pocket. She also passes Barbara the manual and the CD. Barbara starts reading, looking a bit dazed.

    "You said 'gifts', not 'gift'. There's more?"

    "Yes. I... accidentally healed your legs. Agreed to deal with the Joker, in a non-deadly but as permanent as possible, way. And, I took you... Walking On The Moon."

    "What?"

    She's staring at me. I notice Geo's openly crying.

    ---

    There're hugs, three-way ones. We're not joined by the presence which I'm pretty sure is still lurking.

    "I've always wanted to walk on the Moon, since I was a little girl. But, since I... lost use of my legs...."

    "We... may be able to fix that. Now. Intentionally. But, I'm pretty sure it'll hurt both of us. A lot."

    Firm jaw. "Do it."

    Geo is waving her hands. "No! I'm not going to disappear the way that robot did!"

    I sigh.

    "Nothing like that. Though, I'm going to need to borrow your ring."

    Reluctantly, watching me with some suspicion, Geo pulls off her glove, hands me the ring. The non-cat's-eye one.

    "You'll need to wear this, I'll need to take a firm grip of you, and, most difficult, you'll need to imagine, as clearly and as accurately as you can, exactly the process by which you lost use of your legs."

    I see her waver, then, gather herself, put on the ring, hold out her left-arm. I'm... pretty sure she's got a knife concealed in her right-hand.

    We both gasp, cry-out in pain, collapse to the floor. Unconscious.

    ---

    Well. For my first, previously untested, use of Raven's empathic healing ability, boosted by her magic, that went pretty well. I've just got a fading pain in my legs.

    Barbara is doing slow acrobatics. Yes, the occasional pained expression, but, basically OK.

    Geo's got her ring back. Is hunched over it, with it clutched in both hands. She just whispered, "My Precious!".

    There's a dog sitting on the floor, next to her. Looking over at Barbara with needful eyes.

    I sigh.

    "Barbara? I... don't think I can deliver on the Joker side of things, without quite a bit of research. I'm... not Raven. But, I'm pretty sure it's do-able. If you don't mind doing things out-of-order we can go do the Moon Walking, when you feel ready."

    She stops. Looks at me wide-eyed. "Really?"

    I... don't think I've been kissed that vigorously before.

    When I get my breath back, "Might want to hold-off on any life-changing decisions for a few days. Till you get in a... more settled state?"

    "No! Grasp life with both hands! I'm sure I can get an Elvis in Vegas to marry us!"

    I back away, hands up, really quite worried.

    "Kidding. I think we've both got good reason to see if we can be friends, though. After that?"

    "Who knows?"

    ---

    AN: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs was a book long before it was a film...

    [​IMG]

    ... do not look like this.


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    Last edited: Aug 6, 2020
  25. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 14 (Raven's Replacement 4)
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 14 (Raven's Replacement 4)

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    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    ---

    Walking On The Moon. Hope I never get tired of this. With Barbara.

    Unlike last time, Geo is hanging-back, and Raven is walking with her. She's wearing a spare environment shield, from Geo's pocket, I'm using Raven's bracelet, locked on my wrist, as well as her standard protective magic. When you're playing with vacuum, you don't take chances.

    As last time, I've made sure Barbara's got a camera. And, a vacuum-proof sample case, so she can take her bit of the Moon home with her.

    ---

    First, we took a trip back to the Tower.

    I wanted to show her the rest of the team, and, Kory. Also, I needed to pick-up Raven's bracelet. Maybe once I figure-out how Raven does her non-bulge robe pockets I'll work-out a standard load to carry in them. But, more research needed.

    Before leaving Chez Oracle I speak to apparently empty air. Explain I'm taking Oracle back to the Tower, then off for her Moon Walk. That anyone can try and follow us as we walk the dimensions, but I'll not be responsible for their safety. And, there were demons around, on the paths, on my way over here.

    Also, please don't damage the robot trousers or the (now imprinted) robot dog. Though, of course, assuming Barbara's happy, I've no objections to taking copies of all the documentation. But, please, no product announcements without consulting me.

    No reply.

    Barbara, standing with no support, also speaks to the air. Thanks an unnamed someone for taking time to be there. But, she's happy to go with me. And, no, she doesn't think she's under mind control or other undue influence. That she really does want to check on Robin, urgently. At this point she grabs a go-bag.

    Again, no reply.

    So, we leave.

    ---

    The demons had cleared-up by our return trip. I saw one or two divine dogs chewing on what I assume were demon bones. Barbara is wide-eyed, but I make sure I've got a firm grip on her arm. I'd offered the safety-strap, explained we'd once used it with future-Robin, but I thought she'd got more discipline.

    After I made the offer she looked happier. Though, I noticed she kept half-an-eye on where I was, all the time. Did my best to avoid the crowds, she was wearing a deep hood, and an Oracle mask, so we can hope the three of us avoided undue notice.

    At the Tower, I stop just before the final step. Explain I raised wards before leaving. That I need to key her into them. About a minute's ritual and that's done. These aren't the really thorough wards, so none of her blood's required, just saying 'Oracle', holding out a finger she's licked, at the right point.

    We go straight to Robin's room, and I let her make her own way through the locks. Thirty-seconds, a lot quicker than I could manage without knowing the codes. She does a quick inspection, breathing check, pulse, both pupils, ear lobe, ears, mouth, takes a quick photo of his face.

    I'm reasonably sure she palms a small gadget that takes a minute blood sample from his earlobe. "You need to be really careful with blood, you can do all sorts of things to someone given a blood sample."

    I get a blank look.

    "Are you happy with the security of this room?"

    She looks at me, gets out some instruments, uses them and does a thorough physical search.

    "Provisionally. What do you want to tell me?"

    "Future-Robin told me he was Dick Grayson. But, no, I don't know all his secrets. That's one reason I'm reluctant to put him back on his feet, without pressing need. When, not if, we get his spirit back he'll know I've been 'inside his head'." I do the finger quotes.

    "I doubt he'll like that, assuming I understand his personality. So, either I need someone to authorise me stomping all over his privacy, or, pretty soon, I'm going to have to put his body in some sort of secure long-term storage. I'd really like someone he trusts to sign-off on the second option, too."

    She frowns.

    "Good points. I think his mentor would approve."

    She thinks for a while.

    "We'd have to move him elsewhere, but I'm reluctant to suggest Gotham, which's where I know best. Too many things... happen there. I don't trust Cadmus to look after him. S.T.A.R. Labs is always getting raided. Superman could probably help, but I'd prefer to avoid getting him involved." A frown.

    "Do you have any suggestions?"

    "One major one, but it'll take some preparation. And, I'll need to put Cyborg on his feet, to help. I'm pretty sure he'll forgive me for doing that. Eventually."

    A raised eyebrow.

    "You knew him that well?"

    "Before we parted I told him he was the 'big brother I'd never had'."

    ---

    In the lounge. Eating. She was intrigued by the auto chef, particularly when I explained I'd installed it.

    "You'd other reasons for bringing me here. Please explain."

    "I wanted to loan you this mask-collar, from Raven's collection of magical objects. It wont interfere with your vision, but will let you be Oracle in the Tower, while hiding your face and hair. You'll have to add your own vocal disguise."

    She nods.

    "I've got the gadget, in my bag. Why?"

    "The security of the Tower needs a complete make-over. I can handle some of it, but I've nothing like your full range of skills. Cyborg found physical bugs, comms taps, security holes, inadequate encryption, no encrypted off-site backup..." I pause.

    She nods, again.

    "And?"

    "I'm... not the world's best actor. If I have to pretend to be Raven for any length of time I'm going to do something really stupid. I knew her best, among the Titans. Probably followed by Starfire and Cyborg. Then, Beast Boy and Robin, Terra last.

    "Terra? I'm guessing she's a late arrival."

    "At this point she may be mixed-up with Slade. Or, maybe not yet. The whole business of Slade wanting an Apprentice, Robin being first choice, Terra a late alternative. It... got messy."

    "I see."

    "Future-you is really good at disguises, acting like someone totally different. I... really need help in those areas. It might be necessary to make it look as if the Titans are still fully-active."

    "Tricky. And, who do you think is responsible for this situation?"

    "My current best guess is a magi calling himself 'Pure', who works for Raven's father..."

    I hold my hand out.

    "Please don't say his name, unless and until I can greatly improve on the Tower's wards."

    She nods.

    "I think Pure used a magical construct-minion called 'Puppet King' to steal their spirits, stuff them in wooden puppets that magically resemble them. Which, if we're really unlucky, have already been turned-over to Raven's father. Pure may want to be paid, first. I don't know the terms he's working under."

    "OK, makes sense."

    "So, someone needs to use serious detective skills to find Pure, if he's still in the city. And, stealth magic seems to be his speciality. Oh, and he's probably got a small army of combat-capable demon minions. And something he called a 'fetch'." I shudder.

    "Ignoring all the other super-villains in the city... For extra fun, unless I can surprise him there's good odds, one-on-one, Pure'll win in any fight. If I can find him, if he still has the puppets, if I can get them off him..." I take a deep breath.

    "I may be able to save the Titans."

    She purses her lips.

    "There's a technical term we, in the trade, have for this sort of situation."

    She pauses.

    "You're *bleeped*."

    ---

    AN: Chez; because it was suggested to me I should explain 'Chez Oracle'.

    AN: Please note, '*bleeped*' is a Geo substitution for the word Barbara really used. :)

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    Last edited: Aug 7, 2020
  26. Extras: Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 15 (Raven's Replacement 5)
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Raven Lunacy, Author Omake 15 (Raven's Replacement 5)

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    AN: This is an 'Author Omake', this one happens to be 'canon', but shouldn't (greatly) impact the overall story, so you can skip it if you want to. It falls after Episode 65, the Epilogue.

    ---

    "I'm bleeped."

    Barbara's quite right.

    There's no way I see I can win.

    But, if you don't like the game, change the rules. I'm just going to have to get a lot more sneaky. The enemy has minions? I can get employees. With a contract of employment, magically-enforced.

    And, I've got all the dimensions in which to find them. And, Raven's books to find ideas for suitable minions, sorry, 'employees'.

    Even if Pure has turned-over the puppets to... Raven's father. While something that looks like Raven is still around he'll likely stay in the city. He's, potentially, a useful source of information on what happened to the puppets.

    And, Raven's father strikes me as the imprison/gloat, rather than the destroy, type.

    Of course, maybe I get lucky. I luckily find Pure. I luckily beat him. I luckily retrieve the puppets.

    But, hope for the best, plan for the worst. And, unless Raven's father has destroyed the spirits of the Titans I want to give them a chance to live in their bodies, again.

    I need to dig into Raven's books on skrying, cross-dimension, With maximum stealth. Both to improve the Tower wards, and to do it myself. Fighting an almost unknown enemy? Find out more. Block their sources of information.

    Feed them false intelligence.

    ---

    Barbara's agreed to help.

    As Oracle. Relocate to here, upgrade the Tower, detective the city for me. Yes, she's family in Gotham, but commuting isn't necessarily an issue. We discussed whether she might like to have a robot 'Batgirl' roving the streets of Gotham.

    But, she's holding-off on that idea. We giggled over gifting a robot 'Batdog' (yes, including cowl). No, I haven't spoken the name 'Wayne', at any point; it's still hard to think it.

    I've been pumped for information on future-her. Yes, she wants to know about the dates, but all the rest of it fascinates her. She's going to keep the robot trousers, and robo-dog Gina's become part of her life.

    Casually mentioned the alternate city with the many-coloured people, and, she wants a holiday there.

    ---

    We've discussed... finances.

    I don't have access to more than Raven's (limited) Titan petty-cash account. I've no idea how Raven finances her book addiction. Barbara's prepared to put some of her own money into the project, but she's not rich. Thanked her, but, for the moment, declined.

    I introduce her to the Bank of Mammon. They're pleased to ensure I've local access to my money.

    Also...

    They're prepared to offer a loan, at very reasonable rates, if I'll do my best to persuade restored-Raven to bank with them. They seem to like the look of her (potential) finances. Something about an income from more than a million worlds, was what they talked about.

    Barbara's a bit dazed by the Bank.

    The idea of her card working in very many dimensions seems to interest. And, if she's in one where it doesn't work then the Bank's prepared to at least consider opening a branch there. Or, there may be local merchants who'll honour the card.

    Money is power, that sort of thing.

    ---

    I need Victor.

    Even if it's Victor-me. He knows the Tower, inside-out, and the plans back-to-front. He's also, frankly, a better engineer.

    While I've been planning with Barbara, Geo-me's been setting up her workshop/lab, starting with the one next to Victor's, the alch-tech one to follow.

    She's used the Synthesiser to do the heavy-lifting side, make stuff with minimal supervision. Got a load of build-cells out, placed them where future-Victor has/had them in his workshop, got them making more.

    Once we run Tower-local material supplies down we'll have to do a supply run.

    Barbara's impressed by our industry.

    In the sub-sub-basement I point-out to Barbara where I'd like the med-bay to go. But, there's a lot of work that Victor did, first time around.

    So, really, yes, we do need to get him back on his feet. She confesses that the process interests her, but, I warn her that, visually, there not much to it.

    ---

    Victor-me is with us.

    Revived in the ritual circle still dominating Raven's room. Barbara watches from a safe distance, I trust her not to interfere.

    Victor's only comment was, "Yes, this is a mess. Gonna have to work hard to fix this one.".

    We go down to the lounge, where Kory comes in. She's made sure to be seen, outside the Tower, though, she's not yet gone into the city. Stayed within the wards.

    All have a sit-down meal, chat about the situation. Nice to relax a bit.

    Barbara says she doesn't know the Titans, except from reports and publicity stuff. But... she can see that while relaxed they don't all act like me. Raven is obviously different, and is 'me' unless I consciously relax, let her mental reflexes take over.

    So, we start our first acting class, 'Living The Character'.

    It's... very difficult.

    All my life, as Geo, I've fought to be 'me', not be just a convenient tool, to at least be a different viewpoint on the world. Now, I have to put that aside, watch myself react as if I was someone else.

    It... hurts.

    ---

    Hit the books.

    Go through my memories of Raven's notes. Try and work-out where she found... the med-bay. I recall she went through a lot of possibilities, and had to 'cheat'. Maybe I can use my memories of the math Nurf did on the Ship? She had to describe her universe really accurately as she tried to analyse the History Wars.

    Now, if that can be translated into dimensional characteristics at least I'd have a better idea where to skry. But, there's no guarantee that my existing dimensional maps are good, as they're based on my previous dimension. And, I may be able to work-out how Raven used my description of the required alch-tech to target her skrying.

    All the local dimensional stuff is likely identical, or very similar, which was the case visiting Gotham, it's the longer-range maps...

    I may have to do some (careful) scouting.

    Also. if I want to copy Raven's redirection deal, with the drow wizard who has/had spider issues, will I be able to find her, or an identical version of her?

    Tricky. Really tricky.

    Might be best to make a call to my tech supplier...

    ---

    AN: 'Intelligence'; Geo calls it 'troubleshooting', but you might be starting to suspect things about her background... And whether the word 'counter' should prefix some of it...

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    Last edited: Aug 10, 2020
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  27. Extras: Author Notes 8 - The Sequel 'Raven's Replacement'
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes 8 - The Sequel 'Raven's Replacement'

    There's now a sequel to 'Raven Lunacy', called 'Raven's Replacement'.

    You may have noticed that the first five episodes of 'Raven's Replacement' were posted as Author Omake, here. That won't happen any more, you'll have to go to the new thread!

    However, there may still be other Author Omake posted here.

    BTW, seeing as I'm reposting those episodes I reserve the right to make (minor) edits, and in particular to add more 'Author Notes'. Story episodes are held to higher standards than Omake.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2020
  28. Extras: Author Notes 9 - First New Episode of 'Raven's Replacement'
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    Author Notes 9 - First New Episode of 'Raven's Replacement'

    The sequel for 'Raven Lunacy' (RL), called 'Raven's Replacement' (RR), has now had the first new episode posted. If you want to read it I suggest you go here.

    BTW, the reposting those episodes may have (minor) edits, and I may've added more 'Author Notes'. Also, there's a RR Author Omake - please, pay attention to the AN if you believe in spoilers!
     
  29. Extras: Author Notes 10 - Three new Episodes of 'Raven's Replacement'
    Ace Dreamer

    Ace Dreamer Questioning The Nature of our Realities

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    As the Threadmark says, there's now three (new) episodes of RR (we're up to 8, in total)

    And, there's a serious risk of Omake, at some point. So, do you think Raven, Geo and Nurf, as drider university students would work? :)
     
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