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With This Ring (Young Justice SI) (Thread Fourteen)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Mr Zoat, Jan 27, 2019.

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  1. iamnuff

    iamnuff Connoisseur.

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    Oh Melmoth, you were doing so well.
    If you'd just kept your murderboner in your pants until they'd left...
    Alas.

    Edit: i would expect that Grayven could generate a single spark of orange to at least open his subspace pocket, via his own Godhead.

    He's standing atop he planet that he conquered. He should have enough of a connection to his desires and his divine portfolio to do something.

    Greed and possessiveness over the world that he conquered granting just that tiny spark of power to pull his lantern out and get a proper recharge.
    It just never worked before because the vampire sun would eat it as soon as it was generated.
    And it has to happen off-screen so that the branding can come as a surprise at the end of this chapter.

    The problem with this explanation is that the line at the end of the last chapter makes it clear that Grayven doesn't have any way to generate orange juice on his own, and because he suggested going to another city to begin the project to maybe eventually recharge one of his rings.
    Which brings up the time issues.

    Remove that portion of last chapter and slot in something three or so chapters ago where he mentions trying and failing to generate Orange Light on his own. (or rather, tries and succeeds but it's drained before he can use it)
    And suddenly him regaining use of his rings as soon as the vampire sun is gone is well foreshadowed and makes sense.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020 at 4:49 PM
  2. Pinklestia

    Pinklestia Experienced.

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    You know, if you had not said that, he would have given Earth back to you.

    You could have stopped with saying that you would just use the Dreaming to fix things and not go into details. If pushed you could have said that you didn't want Grayven to know how to do it. And it would have been all technical truth and you would be King.

    But no, you could not keep your mouth shut.
     
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  3. Agent Orange

    Agent Orange I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    I seriously doubt they would've given him the throne regardless of what he said. They can't be that strapped for Evil Vizier candidates. And even if they were, you don't just hand over the throne to someone who very obviously and desperately wants it. It's a recipe for disaster. They'd probably just pick whichever Highborn showed the least greed/sadism/desire to rule. Actual sanity or competency for the job taking a distant second place.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020 at 5:41 PM
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  4. Vaermina

    Vaermina Versed in the lewd.

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    We know that the effect extends there... We are directly told he ate space...

    Also accessing a subspace pocket requires the ring be charged, which neither of his were.
     
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  5. Xmaster3000

    Xmaster3000 Making the rounds.

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    Shouldn't it be "comes to a conclusion"?
     
  6. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    Thank you, corrected.
     
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  7. Pez

    Pez Know what you're doing yet?

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    I'm willing to accept that the city with the emotion magic was on the way to get to the ship, and move on. Overlord Zoat stated that Renegade powered up his rings before going to the ship, so... author's fiat (I think I'm using that correctly).
     
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  8. cereal_lurker

    cereal_lurker Getting out there.

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    I don't remember the Renegade having the ability to brand. Power-levels aside, I don't think the Renegade put enough evo-points into ring techniques to unlock the ability, focusing instead on leadership bonuses. Did he learn it off-screen somewhere?
     
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  9. Chojin Patriarch

    Chojin Patriarch Veteran Lurker, Rookie Proofreader

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    Oh, just a little theme tune...
     
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  10. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    He did it back here, though he's nothing like as good with the technique as the SI is.
     
  11. Pinklestia

    Pinklestia Experienced.

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    In this particular case he can reinforce it because he OWNS the planet, and his domain is CONQUEST.
     
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  12. jmartinez8089

    jmartinez8089 Getting out there.

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    This is the part talking about giving his rings a charge to get his lanterns to those that are confused. Maybe a line or two added when they meet Melmoth that mentions Grayven getting his rings charged first before the meeting would end the confusion for people Mr Zoat?
     
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  13. gattsuru

    gattsuru Getting some practice in, huh?

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    Kinda surprised if it works, then. The SI needed both his expertise and Enkindle Need, after all, and he still felt him resist.

    Also kinda surprised Melmoth isn't alpha striking with the grundygods. Overconfidence of immortality and Grayven being better (aka at all) optimized to fight them, but if anything they should be riper and more completely under Melmoth's control this time.
     
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  14. Ngamer11

    Ngamer11 I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Maybe he assumed that the Renegade would just give the Sheeda up because of info he has gotten on what the real Grayven is like? Like you said, he's really overconfident.
     
  15. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    Renegade still played a part in killing the guy that dealt with Aurakles and his daughter for Melmoth, so maybe Melmoth was worried that they could take on his grundygods, or just the one, and wanted to try diplomacy first.
     
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  16. Vaermina

    Vaermina Versed in the lewd.

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    I mean... To be completely fair to Mr Zoat we don't know if the brand actually worked yet...
     
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  17. Threadmarks: Summer's End (part 21)
    Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    AND WE'RE FINALLY
    OUT OF HERE!


    The leaders of Melmoth's… 'Guests' watch as their ancestor and would-be overlord works the console that controls the temporal displacement system. It's only got enough… 'Time juice' for one journey, though we can keep the portal open for a few minutes to check things. Then… That's it. The Sheeda are stuck in the future and we're stuck coming after them the slow way.

    They're from some parallel not-quite Earth Melmoth was planning on using as a fallback position after Gloriana backstabbed him. They weren't keen, overthrew him when he was at his weakest, then followed through on their puritanical instincts and cast out anyone who didn't conform, thus creating a 'natural' following for him to lead into the promised land. He was originally going to take them to post-Harrowing Earth, but with the Harrowing falling at the first hurdle and Starbreaker suffering an existence-failure he changed his destination. They sided with him on the grounds that it was better than being burned to death and none of they seem all that bothered with me controlling him.

    A couple of the less-mutated ones look a little like Klarion, but I suppose that's a fairly generic look.

    I don't know if Melmoth was right about us being doomed. His systems don't record exactly when the fall of civilisation happens, and I haven't wanted to risk being marooned in the future by using the chronal viewer to check. I'm going to have to actually have one of my rare meetings with the Controllers to make sure that they're keeping an eye out for 'Starbreaker'. And… One of my rarer meetings with the Guardians.

    Melmoth jerks, and I apply a little more orange light to render him obedient. Puppetting someone like this isn't something I've found easy, but since I've sworn off assimilation I've been trying to use it to futz around with the target's desires. Make them pliable. I haven't quite… Got it, yet, but it's a work-in-progress.

    "It's… Ready… On… Your command…"

    I glance at Artemis. She takes a moment to confirm her desires on the subject, then nods to me. Back we go, then.

    "The command is given."

    Melmoth presses a button and green-glowing liquid burbles through the system. A moment later a portion of the Harvest Dreadnought's bridge disappears as the space within is subject to a temporal overlay. Artemis draws and looses a volley of eye-arrows, but it's a formality. The monitoring technicians confirm the target a few seconds later.

    It feels… So long. Not in a… I've been off work for a few weeks and it takes me a moment to remember the processes. Not, 'I've been on holiday for two months and school starts in September' long. I… Haven't forgotten as much as I expected to. Details… I'm going to need to relearn some of the paperwork requirements for my role in the Department of Metahuman Affairs and some names… I think they've slipped away. What I was doing in the days before the start of the Harrowing attempt. But my family? I remember them as clearly as when the attack started and I ordered them into the Challenger Mountain facility. With… I was with… What'shisname, the… Piper! The piper fellow! I don't know if that's something to do with how memories are encoded, something to do with being a New God… Something to do with the 'we stop ageing at thirty' thing.

    Or maybe the time I've been here is nothing like as long as I suspect that it is. Artemis is in much the same position; I get the impression that she'd be a lot less enthusiastic about returning if something wasn't happening which weighted her life prior to her arrival in the future differently to the life she's lived here. But then I was thirty while she was seventeen. Even if my theory's true, that's thirteen years of being moulded by the Land of Summer's End.

    The Lord President Anarawd steps forward to wish us a good journey. He was appointed by Artemis and I due to being on a relatively even moral keel and having the charisma to bring Sheeda civilisation with him in its new direction. Melmoth's novel methodology has thrown a few new wrinkles in that plan, but he appears to be coping so far. Which is good: he can be removed by the collective will of the Witam and will have to be careful to maintain their support.

    "Lady Artemis, Lord Grayven. I don't have time to fully describe your impact on our civilisation, but to be brief: we owe you everything we've become and everything we will build in the future. Thank you both."

    He bows, and the Sheeda all across the bridge mirror the action. Artemis looks around and then dips her eyes, looking away slightly and trying to avoid eye contact.

    I smile for the crowd.

    "Our pleasure." I raise my left hand and disintegrate Melmoth. "Just be on the watch for Starbreaker. Artemis?"

    "Oh, ah, yeah." She draws an arrow. "Anywhere in particular?"

    "The Hall of Justice?"

    She blinks. "In, ah… Washington?"

    "Unless they've moved it."

    "Rrrright." She draws and looses, a rainbow smear linking the future with the past. "Let's get out of here before the time juice runs out."

    I offer her my right hand with a faint smile, and she slings her bow and takes it.

    5th May
    09:12 GMT -5


    "This is a restricted-."

    The American army lieutenant whose men are pointing guns at us cuts himself off.

    "Agent Grayven? Ah, sir?"

    "Lieutenant. Status of the Sheeda?"

    "Ah-. The Castle ship got destroyed yesterday, and… Luthor's fleet got all but one of the harvest-ships." The soldiers mostly return to guard duty, with a few flashing curious glances at Artemis and me. I suppose that she's not all that well known-.

    Ugh. Just lost my connection to the Land of Summer's End. All that… Wonderful conquered territory.

    "We think they made it invisible, somehow. These-" He holds up his rifle a little and I see the underslung spell-breaker unit Clea is lending to the United States. That was a fun surprise for the Sheeda who assumed that their armour would adapt to attacks from regular soldiers. "-came in real handy, but HQ reckons that there are a whole bunch of the bastards still out there. You… want us to call in..?"

    Right, Artemis's radio got eaten by Starbreaker.

    "No, we're good. Shout if they notify you of active combat."

    He nods. "Sir."

    Sinestro… No. Ring, show me Venus. Was Sivana successful?

    Images of acid hurricanes and barren rock flicker through my mind.

    Not found.

    "Grayven to Jean. Send a team to secure Doctor Magnificus Sivana. He will be staying at Challenger Mountain for the foreseeable future."

    "Yes, Mister Grayven."

    "Please inform my children that I'm alive and well and that I'll be with them within the hour."

    "Of course."

    I fabricate a League personal computer for Artemis and pass it over to her. She looks at it blankly for a moment, then straps it to her left arm.

    "Ah…" A couple of miss-presses, then she finds the communication function. "Artemis to Justice League. I'm at the Hall of Justice. Grayven and I got off the Castle before Sivana destroyed it."

    "Are you hurt?"

    Who-? Batman. Bruce Wayne. I haven't… Forgotten who he is, but the slight distortion in his voice meant that it took me a moment to link it to him.

    "No, I'm… Fine." From her expression, Artemis is having a little-. Ah, she's remembered. "But-. Some things happened, and I… Unless you really need me I'd like some downtime."

    "I'll inform Aqualad. Debrief tomorrow."

    "Sure." She closes the channel and then turns to me. "Grayven, can you… Take me home? I… Can't remember how to get there."
     
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2020 at 8:34 AM
  18. Prince Charon

    Prince Charon Just zis guy, you know?

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    Yeah, she's had a hell of a trip.
     
  19. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    'Starbreaker'

    maybe 'to have to'

    'command'

    'and the space within'

    'she'd be a lot'
     
  20. Queshire

    Queshire Not too sore, are you?

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    Command, not commend.

    Edit: dang, ninja'd
     
  21. Vaermina

    Vaermina Versed in the lewd.

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    Okay... I stand corrected, it worked even though it shouldn't have...

    What little faith I had just got even smaller.
     
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  22. Chojin Patriarch

    Chojin Patriarch Veteran Lurker, Rookie Proofreader

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    A sentiment I think we can all agree on, given the reception to recent chapters...

    Neatly removing them as a threat... Until another future's Sheeda make their own play. Assuming that's how thing work in this universe now, after the Paragon's little self-crossover.

    The joy of ignoring one quest line instead of another. It's crazy how much content the Devs produced to accommodate such wide and varied choices. And without procedural generation, too! :D

    No doubt his relationships with both groups are far worse than the Paragon's. Lower loyalty, less reputation bonuses... All from a few simple choices early on...

    :rolleyes: Gee, good thing he stopped off at the emotion-caster city offscreen before the confrontation, huh? Bet he's still burning a lot of charge to manage it though.

    As invested as she is in things here, I seriously doubt she'd commit to staying. It's going to be weird though...

    A literal bubble of timey-wimey-ness. Now, what to do with Ol' Swirly-Cheeks?

    Yeah, they're both going to need a break to get their heads back in the game, as it were. Imagine how worse it is for Artemis' memories, having been a teenager when this began...

    You can thank Starbreaker's warping of time, then. Assuming that was going on. It really will feel like a trip to Fairyland. or Oz.

    The Witam being their impromptu parliament, I take it? I get the feeling they won't want the old king back, at least.

    While she may have made friends amongst them, they don;'t live very long at all, do they? :( It'd be like losing pets, over and over again...

    :sneaky: Now, to see whether total disintegration sticks as a final solution for Melmoth, or if his brand of immortality will eventually piece him back together...

    You do remember where that is, right?

    Hopefully she at least remembers where Washington DC is... It probably feels like a hell of a long time, however long it's actually been.

    Trippy. Pity it's literally a step, or I'd cue up some Doctor Who music...

    Oh, yeah, ongoing invasion. Hopefully they've arrived after the whole 'Exploding Castle Revolving' bit. Otherwise there's going to be some confused people...

    At least some of them aren't too jumpy to recognise him.

    Ah, good. Even money that Lex is taking full advantage of the publicity. That one escapee is a worry though..

    Anti-magic rays suitable for mass-usage? Nice. I assume there's not enough for every soldier to carry one, so they're deployed more like Squad Automatic Weaponry (read: the big guns...)

    Unlikely. The remaining harvest ship is likely sweating bullets as they look for somewhere to keep their head down.

    Since Ringestro hasn't charged yet? I guess they could manage to recharge Avarice but not Fear, eh?

    :( Well, that's a big downer ending. At least he went out with his enemy's throat in his hands, screaming imprecations about their parentage (I know, not really... But that sounds so much cooler!)

    Putting him on a discreet suicide watch might be a good idea, at this point. With the loss of his father... There's going to be a bit of Black in his thoughts right now...

    Heh, that should be amusing. For them, it's been maybe a day without contact. For him? Much, much longer.

    Boy, is her report going to raise eyebrows. Raise them clear off the owner's faces, no doubt.

    Honestly, the voice changer effect is one of the few good ideas the DC movies had.

    ...That's putting it mildly.

    :( oof. She is going to need a lot of help in the weeks to come, I think...

    And so this controversial plot comes to a close, barring a happy denouement with Grayven's homecoming. I get the feeling this would have played a little better if we hadn't just got off Paragon's double-episode of Columbia road-trip, but hey, it's Mr Zoat's story, we're just along for the ride. And now we'll soon see what Paragon's been getting up to, at least...


    The spellcheck is throwing an error at this, but it's best guess is 'Puppeteering'... Worth double-checking?
     
  23. iamnuff

    iamnuff Connoisseur.

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    ... not a good sign. It sure looks like Artemis lost a lot more memory than Grayven did.

    Grayven is on the ball.

    Artemis is not.

    I hope the next couple of chapters are dealing with fallout. I don't want to shift away from this to Paragon.
    I really want to see the fallout of this.
    Artemis doesn't remember where her home is. She's going to have almost forgotten most of her friends too.

    I suspect she's going to be somewhat closer to Grayven than she was before this all kicked off, given what they've been through together.
    He's familiar in a way that... frankly, The Team probably isn't anymore.

    Yeah, I can't overstate just how much I hope that next chapter, at the very least, involves a debriefing from Grayven and Artemis (even if he doesn't work for batman anymore, he could still help her explain what the fuck happened, just as a courtesy to Artemis) and her trying to reconnect with her team and family.
     
  24. Brian_Fiction

    Brian_Fiction Terribly Lost

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    I haven't been keeping up with the comments, what's got everyone riled up? This seemed like a pretty nice little installment.
     
  25. transhumansage

    transhumansage Not too sore, are you?

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    i thought melmoth replaced his blood with the water from the fountain of youth or something like that?
     
  26. Darko

    Darko Experienced.

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    Well he pretended to be an Apokaliptian, a race which make the Nazis seem nice and sane, started using a yellow ring, and wouldn't give one side their CPB.

    Who knows, he may have insulted her off screen before shooting her.

    Yeah.
     
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  27. Vaermina

    Vaermina Versed in the lewd.

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    It shouldn't.

    But then, given the way Melmoth's invulnerability is supposed to work, he shouldn't have even been able to do that in first place. Of course Mr Zoat likes to nerf anything that's not an Orange Power Ring, which he massively buff's instead, so I really guess we should have expected it.



    Mr Zoat Dues Ex Machinaed a lot of the ending and fell into the "these characters don't change at all" trap after having Grayven and Artemis spend thousands of years in the future.
     
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  28. Pinklestia

    Pinklestia Experienced.

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    Melmoth faced one of the two Gods left in the whole universe in their place of power.

    You know how many times Darkseid in a wimp? Well in his own planet, he is at full power.

    And who was the New God who ruled the only planet left in the universe again?

    Oh and let's not forget his brilliant plan would have involved pissing off Dream

    The Dreaming is heavily connected to magic so if Dream decides to turn off your magic inmortality he can. Not to mention his sister/aunt is death itself.

    If it makes you feel better, Grayven only permakilled him because he had two Endless that said "Game over!" to the idiot.
     
  29. Doc Sithicus

    Doc Sithicus Getting out there.

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    I remember from the story that Doctor Sivana survived on Sheda Earth for a year (while being hunted by Sheda) - and being physically bog-standard human AND managed to return on his own. Mad props to the guy!
     
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  30. NightmareWarden

    NightmareWarden Not too sore, are you?

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    This is a bit difficult to piece together given the time travel and the differences between Paragon Paul and Renegade Paul’s stories, but I think I’m right here:

    Melmoth could have brought Aurakos with him to Sheeda-topia. Melmoth had invested resources into mind-wiping and Grundy-fying that new god before the Justice League (and Paul) reached Witchworld. In the Paragon timeline Melmoth put the finishing touches (gallons of blood) onto Aurakos’ chrysalis during the Justice League’s mucking about. In the Renegade timeline Melmoth should have had all the time and power necessary to finish up his projects on Witchworld before arriving at the Sheeda-topia as it was ready for conquest.

    So either A) renegade-Melmoth broke Aurakos down for parts to use on his mutated non-Sheeda minions before traveling to the future, B) he brought her to the future and Grayven and Artemis failed to sense her while exploring the Melmoth-mobile, or C) Castle Revolving and the Sheeda Invasion splashed over into Witchworld in the renegade timeline so Melmoth cut his losses to focus on the newly-sensed Sheeda-topia.
     
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