"Isn't that what you want, Nameless One?" The demon wearing your face and speaking with your own voice smiles, her eyes of burnished amethyst glowing - no, burning - as she stares right into your own. Piercing right through your very soul. "Your own life back. The life you've been forced to abandon in the name of this...responsibility, this burden that no one in their right mind would willingly choose to weigh themselves down with." You open your mouth to say otherwise, but she holds up a hand to stop you, a look of disapproval flashing across her smooth features. "And don't insult us both by lying, either. I am you, and you are me - no matter how mutually distasteful we find that truth. I know how you think."You narrow her eyes at her, gritting your teeth in mounting frustration . ...Fine. Sure. Maybe this Warmaster thing isn't so hot. Maybe you don't want to see another stack of fucking paperwork again, and maybe you're okay with going back to the times when you can just drink the days away until you have to peel yourself from the floor and kill someone for money. But to just let shit happen? To let the Golden Weapons loose onto the world, for anyone to pick them up? How's that going to fix things? How's that going to stop Pinky from going completely insane - more than she has already, anyway - and murdering everything and everyone forever?
>>36348277Your winged self shakes her head, smiling again, before lazily tapping at her temple with a glove-encased finger. "Do I need to remind you? I'm you. You're me. Neither of us would ever do anything this grand, this ambitious, without a plan. I have one of my own, and its wheels are spinning along as we speak. This--" She gestures with both her hands wide, turning in a flamboyant twirl to encompass whatever space in unreality you're both occupying at the moment. "--intervention, as I call it, is an attempt to grease those wheels. Get them spinning along more smoothly and effortlessly, without anything blocking their path."Her smile widens as she offers her hand again to you. "So, in the interest of the both of us getting what we want out of this miserable existence the Incubators has cursed us with - what do you say, Nameless One? Or...Chiaki Matsuda, since you adore being called by that so much? Do we have a deal?"You didn't even need to think about it. Not for one second."No deal."The blasting report of the Desert Eagle booms across the unnatural landscape a moment after the monstrous recoil kicks against your fist, right after the split-second whiteout of the muzzle flash - and you watch your sneering reflection blink at you in stunned silence as she topples to the ground, her left leg sheared off from the kneecap. Her hapless, graceless fall scattering more black feathers into the air, only for them to drift down and soak into an expanding pool of her own blood."...Really? Really, Matsuda? I give you a fucking FREE TICKET out of this SHIT, and this is how you respond?!" She squawks in cold, dignified fury as she struggles to right herself, to pull herself up to a sitting position. Her skeletal wings flapping wetly and uselessly in the effort. "Are you so far gone that you can't even comprehend such a precious gift when it's all but shoved in your fucking FACE?! I--"[1/2]
>>36348298She stops dead as she looks up to see you aiming your Desert Eagle at her face. Its barrel kissing her forehead."You said it yourself. I'm you and you're me." You murmur as you stand over her, finger tightening on the trigger. "And I think we both know which way this is going to go.""..." The raven-haired demon scowls at you in cold silence, before slowly shaking her head. "You're making a mistake." She says flatly, hateful disappointment coating her words. "Madoka can't be saved, not in the way you think. The only way to save her is to let her do what she wants to this timeline, and--"You press your Desert Eagle a bit more firmly against her forehead. The demon blinks, frowns, and then - of all things - suddenly smiles."Fine. Yes. That's your decision. I suppose I should have known all along that you were going to be just as stubborn." She giggles again - a strange thing to see and hear, considering the one doing it is currently bleeding out from a ragged stump where her left leg had once been. "But can I at least offer you a small nugget of advice, since you're dead set on this self-destructive path? After all, you're quite fond of listening to those three idiots inside that thing, right?" The horror nods towards the gun set to make a crater of her skull. "It'll just take me a second, and then you can go back to your little rescue mission or whatever it is you're trying to do."How do you respond?Fine. What?Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.
>>36348309>Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.Do not trust Dildos.
>>36348309[X]Fine. What?Be quick about it.
>>36348309[X] Fine, what?Then as she answers pull the trigger
>>36348309Fine. What?I hope we get wings.
>>36348309[x] Fine, What?
>>36348309>[X]Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.
>>36348309>Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.Not gonna let her corrupt us through the gun.
>>36348309>[x]Fine. What?I already know the answer;"Green hair is the danger"
>>36348309[x]Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.inb4 >green hair is the danger
>>36348309>Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.Welp
>>36348309>Lick Grief Seed
>>36348309>[x]Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.letting the devil keep talking to recover or prepare something else to fuck us? Yeah, no. We made our point of not listening to her already.
>>36348404Its like you don't even want the bonus feat.
>>36348309>[x]Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.Her nickname is Homucifer, and you want to listen to her advice?
>>36348309>[X]Fine. What?>>36348419We can easily ignore her advice (like we already did), but we might learn something.
>>36348309>[X]Fine. What?We can be civil.>I bet I missed the vote deadline.
>>36348419Wait, fuck, I just realized this could all be in our head. Changing my vote before we blow someones brains out.
>>36348309[X]Fine. What?Homu did nothing wrong.
>>36348309>[X]Fine. What?she will probably say something to make us distrust the Three Stooges but she also might tell us something important
>>36348445It isn't like we can't just ignore her advice, also that gun is probably pointed at our best friend.
>>36348435This is me. Now that I realize I still have a few minutes, let me elaborate - don't kill her. We don't want to risk killing somebody else, and we want to establish a sense of "I don't need to waste my effort pretend-killing you."
>>36348309>Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.We are getting to NOIR for this shit
>>36348309Decu needs to tell me when he puts threads upppp
Threadly reminder that the updated eBook can be found at http://pastebin.com/kbGzcbDblink to the Fanart gallery: http://wiki.magicalgirlnoir.com/index.php/Fanartlink to the journal pastebin: http://pastebin.com/SZkxPycM>>36348309>Shake your head, and pull the trigger. You don't have time to waste listening to yourself.
>>36348309(x) fine what?
>>36348456>It isn't like we can't just ignore her adviceOnce an idea is planted, it's hard to ignore. for example: green hair is the danger, don't trust the mumi, get fucked, etc.
>>36348658But not trusting the mumi is barely common sense. Beside, Chiaki is worshipping her, anyway.
>>36348658Bam just ignored all those ideas.
>"Madoka can't be saved, not in the way you think. The only way to save her is to let her do what she wants to this timeline, and--"The funny thing is that Chiaki Matsuda doesn't even have the same psychopathic, mono-manic focus on saving Madoka and Madoka alone that .... well, all the Homus had.For better or worse, the Warmaster of the IXth is half of her own person by now. (Or at least a third.)
>>36348658Nobody has really explained what the green hair shit is all about. Kirika and the stooges and Pinky knew about it. For all we know, it could be some catchphrase that a universally-recurring fictional character says.
I really want someone to shop Midori hair onto an AROUND BLACKS, NEVER RELAX image.GREEN HAIR? BEWARE
>>36348752My personal pet theory is that someone killed Midori somewhere between the Surgery and the current arc, which means that she's been replaced with a turncoat look-a-like.
>"And they never return my calls...">"Ehh, they're just bein' silly."
>>36348752I'd say Yuma's Mindsculpting habit, but I don't know how Kirika would know about that.
>>36348721But can you ignore Mami lying about golden weapons?>>36348793Chiaki would have noticed Midori's butt feeling different.
>>36348793Just like in game of thrones.
>>36348853>inb4 Mami's natural hair color is green
>>36348806It'll be okay, Heather!Kyouko just sometimes forgets her phone, is all. Right? Right?
>anons have green hair and text
>>36348385>>36348387>>36348658>>36348752>>36348778>>36348913DID SOMEWAY SAY GREEN HAIR?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f3IgwLT_mYc
>>36348778at least I tried
>>36348964Yes thank youMy life is complete
>>36348793Malal was impressed enough to take a gamble on her, and Madoka entrusted her with a lot of sensitive info. Given her relationship with Chiaki, she could be in a position of influence in this cosmic conflict.Maybe they're afraid of what could happen if the latest incarnation of Homura got too attached to someone else like she did with Madoka the first time around.
>The Incubators actually have green fur, it's just been bleached.>Everyone in the 9th has Green hair, most of them dye their hair for variety.>Hitomi was Mumi all along.>Midori is actually the warmaster of the 10th, and she'sundercover to destroy the 9th.>Midori is actually the Spymaster.>Vegetables are sentient and are plotting to take over the world.Take your pick of the shittiest ideas I could come up with.
>>36348957If Midori turns into a god, I will eat my papers.
>>36348995All I'll say to this is that the Spymaster isn't a natural blonde.
GREEN HAIR IS DANGERGREEN HAIR IS WORST GIRL
>>36348995>>Vegetables are sentient and are plotting to take over the world.No need to worry, Murderface knows what to do.>BEHEAD THE CUCUMBERS>DISEMBOWEL THE TOMATOES>>36349037Oi, that's no way to be talking about Chiaki's waifu.
>>36348341 >>36348347 >>36348349You grumble something approaching of an affirmation, and the raven-haired banshee's smile grows wider - almost resembling the crescent-moon grin of the doll-like things that she'd sent after you. "Green hair is the dange--" She starts, but immediately holds up a hand as you make to blow her brains out. "Wait. No. That's not what I wanted to say. I apologize. That came out of nowhere."...Then what the FUCK did she want to say, then?! You snarl down at her, unable to keep the rising anger from your own voice. She looks at you pointedly, before shaking her head. "If you proceed down on this path you've chosen for yourself, all the things that you hold dear will be taken away from you. Your friends will become your enemies, and your enemies will be the ones you turn to for aid. You will lose everything, piece by piece, person by person, until you are left with nothing but the road you're traveling." The monster looks up at you with your own eyes. "And of all the people who will abandon you, Tomoe Mami will be the one to betray you first."...No. You shake your head, allowing a smirk to curl your lips. You've heard of that before. If she's looking to fuck with your head, then she'll have to try something else. That kind of thing is impossible--"Is it really?" The black-haired devil pulls herself forward with her hands, the ragged stump of her leg making a disgustingly-wet noise as it slops against the pool of blood leaking from it. "Both of us know what kind of person Tomoe Mami is. What kind of Magical Girl she's become. Do you really think she won't step in once she realizes just what is happening to you? Once she realizes your role in all of this? Once she sees what you're about to become?"[1/2]
>>36349071. . ."You're free not to believe me, of course." The demon smiles brightly. "Whoever did that made sure I can't control you, piss-poor job of doing it aside." She points towards your scarred Shield. "Consider it a parting gift from someone who actually has compassion for what you're going through, rather than squawking shades of the past, forever lamenting their failures."You open your mouth to reply, when a familiar voice echoes throughout the plain. A familiar voice, shouting panicked words through a throat already hoarse from too much yelling."...Murderface? MURDERFACE, WAKE UP! I can't hold them off forever! ...Mami, I've found Murderface, but she's out like a light! Yeah, we're pinned down at the third floor, looks like some kinda supply cabinet...no, I can't reach Wendy either, she's not responding--"The voice abruptly fades to silence. That's...that's Kyoko. Wait, shit, does that mean--"Whoops!" The Witch laughs. "I guess that means our time's up!" It's here that she points towards what looks like a hole in reality ten meters away from you, the portal glowing with a virulent violet light. Unnameable things - things that shouldn't exist, things with tentacles, claws, and claws in their tentacles - slither from its depths, only to slip back out once you focus on them. "Just go through that and you'll be back where you need to be. I PROMISE that it's not leading to some sort of dungeon dimension or anything."You turn back to her, eyes narrowing. ...Why should you even trust her with something like that?The girl blinks, before sighing in exasperation. "I'm you, remember? I've tried to make my case, and you didn't take it. Why should I expend more effort than necessary in removing you from my path when it'll happen in the course of time, anyway?" She smiles again, with the same crescent-slit grin as her dolls. [2/3]
>>36349092"Besides, I think it'll be fascinating to see how what kind of Chiaki Matsuda I'll have to kill when the last day dawns." She cackles, the mirthful noise as musical as an angel's dying scream. "Will you be as twisted as that freak you gave your nickname, or will you wear the same wings as I do now?"..."...GAH! That fucking STINGS!" Kyoko's ghostly scream stabs a knife of ice through your spine. "...Alright, you fuckers you asked for it--"Jesus Christ, she's getting slaughtered there. No time, no time! You have to get back into the fight!"If you don't trust me, you can always go back the normal way," The Witch volunteers, the fingers of her left hand forming into a gun and aiming at her own temple. "Although you might wake up with a migraine if you do. Your choice."What do you do?Shoot yourself.Run through the portal.Shoot her instead.
>>36349100Time to help our flatbro!>[X]Run through the portal
>>36349100>Run through the portal.
>>36349100>Run through the portal.... Maybe give a parting shot at the bitch
>>36349100>[X]Run through the portal.
>>36349100>[X]Run through the portal.>[X]Shoot her as you pass by.
>>36349100>[x]Shoot her instead.>[x]Run through the portal.Let's not risk anymore amnesia
>>36349134Changing my vote here >>36349117to mirror Hat's: >[X]Run through the portal.>[X]Shoot her as you pass by
>>36349100>Run through the portal.No time to waste. Kyobro is in danger.
>>36349100>[X]Run through the portal.I feel like every choice could go horribly wrong.Let's not shoot Homucifer, we need her alive for the harem end
>>36349100>[x]Run through the portal.Well shit.
>>36349100[X]Run through the portal.[X]Shoot her as you pass by.
>>36349100Run through the portal. Run homu run
>>36349100Run through the portal.
>>36349100>>36349134>[X]Run through the portal.>[X]Shoot her as you pass by.
>>36349100>[X]Run through the portal.Kyoko needs us!Anyone who has the power to defy Mami's Mind Control deserves to live. And now the seeds of doubt have been planted and the shadowruns can intensify.
>[x] Run through the portal
[X]Run through the portal.--[X]DO NOT shoot her as you pass.
Hey guys, is it really a good idea to shoot a person holding a portal while we're running through it? It might collapse on us and throw us off course or cut us in half. That would be just GREAT.
>>36349100>[x]Run through the portal.she's right, why deceive us now when watching us crumble and despair is more fun?
>>36349247Eh, just pull the trigger at the very last second.
>>36349276Well, this is a mindscape so it might not even DO anything.
>>36349100Yeah don't shoot her! No bully
>>36349307If anyone ever deserved bullying, it's The Transcendent One.
>>36349100[x] Run through the portal.
>>36349100>[X] Run through the portal>[X] Do not trust the mumi
>>36349344I think the Clara dolls give her enough of that already. Besides, she was pretty useful for a devil. We learned there's a risk of Chiaki going full devil too, and got another confirmation on Mami.We'd better keep the chainaxes ready to get our 400,000 points from Risa when the time comes.
Okay people, let's get serious for a minute here. Death flags are popping up all over the place, and we all know that it's very likely that a BAD END will occur. All I'm asking is that we adhere to three simple rules:1. First in, Last out, no questions asked.2. Ahriman is a grade A nutjob. Give Kiriko a chance to convince Oriko that she's on the wrong side, but if she isn't convinced, slice her up and that red-helmeted culexus up, no 3rd chances.3. If it comes down to the line, we all agree the one to take the sacrifice will be us. We have the golden weapons and the perfect time-stop ability, so we have the best chance of getting out alive.
>>36349477We don't have perfect time stop anymore, we've got the Pinkie edition, where we never know whether she'll want to kill us, eat someone's soul gem, rape us, or kick us out of timestop because she's pissed off.
>>36349563On the other hand, we also have Pinkie edition. So she could do all of that, OR, be convinced to help deal with whatever bullshit Ahriman and the akashic witches try to pull in our timestop realm.We're getting better at convincing her of things. It just needs pancakes, or affection, or promises of mutilation. All of those things can be had in abundance here!...except pancakes.
>>36349447Trusting ourselves, who has fucked up things millions of times over, who we know for 100% certainty wants us to fail...Only good things can come of this.
>>36349688I know right
>>36349607Unless she loses her shit like when we brought coobs into timestop, or did it near the witch in Kharn's basement.>HOMURA-CHAN WHY WOULD YOU BRING ME HERE?>>36349688What could possibly go wrong from trusting magical girl satan?>dead Chiaki>witch Chiaki>devil Chiaki>Chiaki turned into something like PinkieMaybe Midori would like our lewd dress if we went devil.
I might need to update this after all.
>>36349688While that's how Chiaki will rationalise it to deny that Mami poses a threat, this is the chance to start doubting the perfection of our Personal Goddess of Victory, consciously or otherwise.So yes, good things can come of this.
>>36349767Still curious of how Chiaki and Midori witches would be likeWe will probably find out before the end
>>36349247Go away Common Sense, you're not welcome here!
>>36349117 >>36349122 >>36349125You look down at the smiling fallen angel sitting in a puddle of her own blood, and then at the shrieking, shaking tear in reality - before snarling out a curse and making a mad dash for the latter. Just as you throw yourself through it, you hear your winged clone yell a parting message at your back:"IT'S POINTLESS, CHIAKI MATSUDA! WHAT YOU'RE DOING WILL MATTER LITTLE WHEN THE END TIMES COME! I AM FOREVER, AND YOU ARE JUST ONE MAGICAL GIRL!"You whirl around and let loose a snap-shot just as you fall into the portal itself - and the last thing you see before everything goes black, again, is the monster's face disappearing in a pink cloud of gore and blood and brain matter.Christ. No wonder why everyone wants to kill you, you're insufferable.As entertaining and endearing as a drunk with a gun, or a crazed all-powerful being with crazy abandonment issues.You close your eyes as the godawful sensation of teleportation once more takes your breath away, and--. . .. ..[1/2]
>>36349951--you open your eyes to wake up in the scene of a massacre. Or at least, one in progress.A massacre perpetuated solely by a single magical girl, one with the crimson of her costume made wet and grisly by fresh bloodstains, most of which seems to be forcibly donated by her opponents. A magical girl with long crimson hair tied into a ponytail with a black ribbon, an infectious grin, and her strange lack of one eye concealed underneath an eyepatch made from a family heirloom sword guard."EAT IT! EAT IT, YOU GRABASSTIC PIECE OF SHIT!" Your best friend roars as she jabs the boxcutter-edge blade of her spear into the mouth of something tall, winged and shod with cloven hooves. The sparking blade with the underslung bolter attachment disappears into the creature's massive equine maw, a moment before it punches right through the back of its head. The thing lets out a monstrous death rattle, its limbs falling slack in twitching, nerveless death - and it's with nary a grunt of effort that Kyoko rips her spear back out, before spinning once and hammering the teetering corpse with a brutal kick that sends it flying. It is airborne for exactly three seconds before it smashes into one of its brothers loping forward to attack, knocking it off its feet."GET SOME! GET SOME!" Your best friend whoops, materializing one of her tri-pointed spears in her other hand, spinning both weapons into blurring shapes at the same time. "COME ON AND GET SOME SPEAR, COW BOYS! WHO WANTS TO DIE FIRST?!"...Completely in her element. You almost feel a bit stupid to think she needed your help - that is, until you see that she is getting tired. It's not hard to see why - from the amount of bodies lying around, she's been fighting back what seems to be an endless horde for quite a while. [2/3]
>>36349968You can also see that her rear leg is shivering each time she takes a step back, a sure sign that she needs a breather - or at least, some help, before fatigue really catches up and makes her lower her guard.You drag yourself up back onto your feet - wincing at the aching protest of your stiff joints, at your cold muscles - and make to help Kyoko when something stops you.It's a...a barricade? A magical one, it looks like. One made to look like a rather fanciful mosaic fence of red and black diamonds. ...Kyoko's? Yeah, it looks like hers--"GAAAAH! GET OFF!" Kyoko screaming in pain snaps you back into reality, and you see one of the goat-monsters sinking its teeth into her arm, making her drop the spear she'd been wielding with deadly, brilliant efficiency. One of its bigger brothers, a hulking behemoth with skulls impaled through its horns, hefts a massive cleaver over its head, gearing up for an executioner's cleave. Clearly intending on hacking your best friend in half.What do you do?Shout at Kyoko to warn her.Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.
>>36349979>Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.Let's not pull our the sword that supposedly is going to kill our buddy
>>36349979Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.
>>36349979>Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.Make sure we're using the Deagle.
>>36349979>Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.Might as well. Now might be a good time to test out Muramasa, and I know that Muramasa will enable us to save kyouko in time
>>36349979whynotboth.jpg>[X]Shout at Kyoko to warn her.>[X]Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.KATANA TIME
>>36349979>[X]Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.
>>36349979>Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.
>>36349979>[X]Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.
>>36349979>[X]Shout at Kyoko to warn her.>[X]Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.
>>36349979>[X]Shout at Kyoko to warn her.>[X]Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.Screaming could distract it long enough to blow its brains out.
>>36349979>[x]Shout at Kyoko to warn her.
>>36349979[X]Shout at Kyoko to warn her.[X]Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.[X]Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.Anything less than everything is not enough.
>>36349979>[x]Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.
>>36349979Shoot and shout!
>>36349979>[x]Shout at Kyoko to warn her.>[x]Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.let her know just in case breaking her magic shield drains some of her power or something
>>36349979>Shout at Kyoko to warn her.>Shoot your way through the barricade and intervene.>Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.BLOOD FOR THE KHARN TWINS, SKULLS FOR THE SKULL CRIB
>>36349979>[x]Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.That fucker not being Kyoko.
>>36349979[x]Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.
>>36349979>[x]Cut your way through the barricade with Muramasa and MURDER the fucker.
>>36350228And also the deadest!Can we romance Sayaka now? Midori is old and busted.
>>36350264Do you want Chiaki to witch out from incessant bitching?
>>36350264Midori can go screw our other ex-girlfriend, what's-her-hamburger.We gots new, bitchier bitches to pursue.
>>36349979[X] THE FLESH OF FALLEN ANGELS
Strangely E__n of the w__t radio syncs pretty well with the thread.
>Kyaku dies>Sayaka witches out>kills Midori>Mami loses it>Wendy betrayalChiaki x Kyubey OTP
>>36350484At least we'd still have Pinkie.
>>36350484Anon plzBest girl still there for us.
>>36350484New definition for cat lady
>>36350484This is Kharn 2.0 route.
>>36350484Kyubey already fucked us. He doesn't do long term relationships.
>>36350546Best girl, you said ?
>>36350582>it wasn't RuriOne big fucking disappointment.
>>36350582>Chiaki not playing piano.>Not Pinkie singing.I just don't like you.
>>36350582>Lori gets butchered like a pig protecting Chiaki>Misaka gets blown up in Tiny Pete>Rea and Enishi killed by Mami>Pinky and Akuma NTR
>>36350780We still have the three stooges
>>36350834Yuu x ReaThey can be short together.
>>36350780Can we waifu Kumatora?
>>36350874I hope so.
Page 7 is slightly too far to be, midway through a mgnq thread.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JXcV6dOMUZsReplace with Homu and Madoka. It fits. You know it does.
>>36351440Hummm, can't be Mumi, her hair ain't that long... Miss TASALS?
>>36350602>Ruri>WaifuYou know, I don't get why people go on and on about Mami being terrible when there's this little shit running around ruining people for shits and giggles.you really want to go anywhere near that monster?
>>36351440Now THAT is something worth fighting for.
>>36351483Yeah, but...1) Chiaki neither likes nor trusts Ruri2) Chiaki very much likes and trusts MamiIt's not the enemy without, but the enemy within.
>>36351483Never said anything about Ruri being a waifu. I just consider her to be infinitely more interesting than Iori.
>>36351461That was fairly Homu, I will admit.
>>36350834This picture will always to me be Yuu going "jazz hands"
>>36351483No one idol should have all that power.
>>36351683That's fine. She's no ordinary idol.>insectoid mecha Miku
>>36350007"KYOKO! BEHIND YOU!" You scream, just as you tear Muramasa out of its sheath without a second's thought, the leather-wrapped handle immediately growing warm in your grasp. The tableau in front of you immediately freezes, with your best friend momentarily distracted by the set of fangs buried deep into her forearm as she blinks at you. "Murderface...?" Another moment, and her face brightens up. "MURDERFACE! You're up! I thought you--""BEHIND! YOU!" You yell again, and Kyoko whirls to see the massive hooked cleaver above her, a moment's distance from falling and splitting her in half. Time seems to slow down to a crawl as your best friend's one eye widens at the sight of her oncoming death, before sluggishly attempting to bring her other spear to bear in order to block it. It's with a cold, frantic certainty that you realize the simple fact: she won't make it in time.+ But with this blade in your hands, you will. + A soft, velvet voice purrs into your ear, almost lovingly.The purple flame erupts in front of your left eye as the barricade quite literally falls apart in front of you with just one swing, and then--and then--The ear-splitting whine of a piggish death squeal, along with the sudden shock of a shower of warm blood slapping against your cheek, jolts you back into reality - and you blink as you find yourself standing in front of something that had once been the thing that was about to kill Kyoko Sakura. It was now little less than biological wreckage - a pile of furred, steaming meat and bone and sinew, hacked so cleanly into pieces that you'd bet you could put it back together if you were bothered to, like some child's building block toy. [1/2]
>>36351746Looking around, you see that the three other demons behind this particular one had also been cut apart beyond recognition, and you watch in morbid fascination as one of the heads had been lopped off with such expertise that it was still alive. It was still attempting to breathe, its pebbled tongue lolling out of its lips as it tried to draw breath into lungs it clearly didn't have anymore.You can also hear the rapidly-receding horde of footsteps leading away from your current location. ...You probably managed to frighten the others away. Good.There's a wet, meaty crunch, and you whirl to see Kyoko behind you, her bleeding arm wrapped around the neck of the goat-demon that had bitten her. From the way its slack face is blankly leering, you can tell that it's been killed by its neck being savagely broken like a twig. That, and the fact that it's facing the completely wrong way. "Murderface!" Your best friend cheers, dropping the corpse from her arms and stepping forward. Something inside screams at you to hold up the sword en garde, but you force it away and shove the sword back into its sheath before Kyoko reaches you. "Oh, man, that was brutal! You just diced these dudes like nobody's business! Not even Sayaka-chan can cut like this, and she's been trying a whole lot!"You blink at your best friend, and then at her wound, the teeth marks still dripping with her blood. ...Funny, with all the dead bodies around, you shouldn't be able to smell Kyoko's blood in particular, and yet, you could easily pick it out..."Geez, where the heck are you hiding all that strength, Murderface?" Kyoko squeezes your biceps, frowning as she squishes your non-existent muscles. "Certainly not here, but man, to cut like that, you gotta be packin' at least SOME definition here...Nope, nothing there either. What the hell...?"[2/3]
>>36351777+ Tempting, isn't it? + The voice whispers again, soft and dangerous, like a knife's edge slicing through silk. + That's the hunger, Matsuda. The hunger of the Chosen. We don't just shriek about tasting the meat of dying angels for our health, you know. It's our call. Our cry. We are the Chosen, and to sustain ourselves, we need to feed. You will feel the hunger much more keenly in the coming days. +You shake your head. No. No, dammit. Now's not the time for that!+ Suit yourself, Matsuda. Don't say I didn't warn you. +You shake your head again, and tug your arm out of Kyoko's grasp. That's enough, you tell her. This isn't the time, and for fuck's sake, you're not THAT noodly."I didn't say anything about anyone being noodly!" Your best friend protests. "You're the one who keeps saying it!"Well, whatever. Anyway, is she alright? How's her arm?"I'm fine, I'm fine! I'm not second-in-lane for the rank leadership for nothing, you know!" Kyoko taps her chest with a bloodied fist, proud as you like. "Arm's a bit itchy, but the bleeding's stopped now and I can always have Sayaka-chan patch me up later! Although, uh..." It's here that your best friend looks worried. "I hope I don't, you know, turn into a goat or something in the full moon. Because that would really suck."...What? Like a werewolf, but a goat? A were-goat?"Yeah! That's not even cool!"...Yeah. Not cool at all.Kyoko nods. "A-anyway, uh...how did you do that, seriously?" Kyoko's one eye widens at you, before falling to the sheathed Muramasa on your hip. "Wait, is that what Kirika's sword actually does? Because earlier I saw you had this purple flame thing on your eye, and I thought that was just something from around here, but..."+ Chiaki? Chiaki-san? Are you there? Chiaki-san, Kyoko-san, please respond! + A pulsed thought, faint yet crystal-clear, makes the both of you wince at its suddenness. ...Mami? Wait, that's Mami's voice! How's she pulsing--[3/4]
>>36351818"It's that new thing that Midori and Kyuubey and Yuma-chan were talking about earlier, I think?" Kyoko volunteers. "We can't use normal codecs here, since this is A-cushy..Akashyyyk...Wookie World, too much interference. All the channels are just souls screaming in everlasting torment and despair." She shrugs. "So Yuma-chan's hooked up so that she's sort of our codec system with everyone else here, without her being here. "Ah. Well. That sounds handy."It is, isn't it? And you just gotta think of your reply and it'll automatically get sent!"Just like pulsing, huh. + Chiaki-san! Kyoko-san, please respond! + Mami pulses again. You pulse back a rudimentary response, still a bit shaken from your encounter with the demon earlier - and it's here that a sense of relief floods you, one delivered by Mami's own pulse.+ Oh, thank god, both of you are safe. + You could see the blonde's tired smile curl her lips. + I was about to send Sayaka-chan down to fetch you, but it seems like it won't be necessary. +Down? Wait, where is she, anyway? And where are you?+ We're holed up at the fifteenth floor, Chiaki-san. Sayaka-chan and I. The teleportation dropped us fairly close to each other, so we immediately linked back up together here. The same seems to have happened to you and Kyoko-chan, but she found you unresponsive and comatose there. I told her to keep you safe until you woke up. +Is that right? You turn to glance at Kyoko, who flashes you a cheerful thumbs-up sign. ...And how long have you been out?+ Not long. I'd say thirty minutes, maybe less. ...Honestly, I can't say for certain. Time moves strangely here. + You could hear the apprehension in Mami's pulsed words - no, you could feel it. [4/5]
>>36351848+ Anyway, Chiaki-san, it seems that our main objective is - wonder of wonders - at the top floor. Most of the things we've been encountering seems to be coming from there. Normally, I'd just have us push upwards to finish this quickly, but something's happened-- ++ Wendy? + You interject.+ Yes. I can't reach her. Yuma can't find her, and Sayaka can't pick up her scent. + A pregnant pause. + ...Chiaki-san, I know how complicated your situation with Wendy is right now, but can I ask if you could search the floors for her on your way up? I have faith in her abilities, but the fact that she's unresponsive...+ Her pulsed thoughts trail off, and you could feel the traces of concern and fear rippling through her message. + If you'd like, though, I can leave Sayaka here to secure our link-up point while I look for her myself. +How do you respond?+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. ++ Just push on forward. Wendy's a big girl, she'll catch up with us. These things aren't as tough as they look. ++ Have Sayaka do it instead. She's faster than all of us combined, she'll cover more ground. +
>>36351818>+ Tempting, isn't it? + The voice whispers again, soft and dangerous, like a knife's edge slicing through silk. + That's the hunger, Matsuda. The hunger of the Chosen. We don't just shriek about tasting the meat of dying angels for our health, you know. It's our call. Our cry. We are the Chosen, and to sustain ourselves, we need to feed. You will feel the hunger much more keenly in the coming days. +Aww shit, we vampire now.>>36351898>[x]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +
>>36351898[X]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +
>>36351898>[X]+ Just push on forward. Wendy's a big girl, she'll catch up with us. These things aren't as tough as they look. +It's not as though we even want Wendy with us for the final confrontation.
>>36351898>[x]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +>[X]+ Have Sayaka do it instead. She's faster than all of us combined, she'll cover more ground. +Start from the bottom, and have Sayaka start form the top. Meet in the middle, hopefully with Wendy.
>>36351898>[x]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +
>>36351898>[X]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +inb4 betrayal
>>36351898>+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +>How many floors are there?
>>36351898>[x]+ Just push on forward. Wendy's a big girl, she'll catch up with us. These things aren't as tough as they look. +We'll check for her as we clear floors, and she has enough sense to follow us up.>>36351848>Wookie WorldNever change, Kyouko.
>>36351898[X]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +No meguca left behind.
>>36351898>+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +Wendy is our out if things go haywire. We need her.
>>36351898>[X]+ Just push on forward. Wendy's a big girl, she'll catch up with us. These things aren't as tough as they look. +I feel like we want to be out of here as quickly as possible.
>>36351898>[X]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +Additional:>[X]+ Until I do find her, find the nearest defensible location and hunker down. +
>>36351898>[x]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +since we gotta get up anyway, might as well keep our eyes open
>>36351898[x] i'll find herRemember that Mami is being targeted by these fucks too.
>>36351898I'm tempted to have Sayaka go down and us go up, to do it in half the time. But that would mean leaving Mami alone. And time flows strangely here. Who knows how much time would have passed if and when we meet up. We might find her an old white-haired meguca who has seen things we can't even imagine. It might be best to meet up as soon as possible.So both these:[X]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +[X]+ Have Sayaka do it instead. She's faster than all of us combined, she'll cover more ground. +But ask Mami to go with Sayaka.Of course maybe Wendy is just on the 16th floor and not answering pulses because callidus physiology or something.And since when can Sayaka smell so well?
>>36351898[x]+ Have Sayaka do it instead. She's faster than all of us combined, she'll cover more ground. +[x]+ I'll search as we go up, and meet with Sayaka in the middle. +
>>36351898>[x]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +This is not about personal stuff. No meguca left behind.
>>36351898>+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +
Having Sayaka do it is playing into the Prophet's hands. They want to kill Mami, and people want to take the option that leaves her alone?
>>36352096There's risks in all of them.A: Puts you and Kyouko at riskB: Puts Wendy at riskC: Puts Sayaka and Mami at risk
>>36352051>And since when can Sayaka smell so well?Wendy just smells bad, is all.
>>36351898>+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +Other options seem like a trap.
>>36351898>[X]+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +Threesome end or bust!
So are we going Pinky cultist route? Or third option Parent Trap route?I'd rather help the Blessed Lady than Pinky, even if Pinky is the sexiest.
>>36352051>And since when can Sayaka smell so well?As a little girl she was bitten by feral fashionista. The ability usually only manifests on full moon, but this place is weird like that.
>>36351975Private, you sack of shit, you don't abandon your battle buddie!
Question.What IS Neco?
>>36351898+ I'll find her. Stay there and wait for us. +First in last out, everyone is coming home alive.
>>36352230A miserable pile of nya!
>>36352249>200 posts in>not even autosage>fish snacksC'mon, believe in Decu! His are the gains that will pierce the heaven!
>>36352278It's pretty late in Decu-land, so it's highly likely. Unless he wants to skip out on even more sleep and get sick again.
>>36352211I've got the feeling that Wendy is somewhere else entirely.
>>36352250but werent we the last in due to ourself?
>>36352278I was looking at the time, not the post count.
>>36351898>+ Just push on forward. Wendy's a big girl, she'll catch up with us. These things aren't as tough as they look. +First in, last out.
>>36352307we warped in unconscious so there's no telling whether we were first in or not.
>>36352307Well, if we count the other versions of ourself, then we've been here since forever...
>>36352338That's a lewd phrase.
>>36352442Anon, think of the children!
>>36352442[x] THE EAR FLESH OF FALLEN ANGELSKirika is probably right, and Homucifer & Risa too. I bet Mami is going to catch us enjoying the flesh of fallen angels and betray us. That will be the end of pancakes, and the 400,000 Risa points won't make Chiaki feel any better.
>>36351933 >>36351940 >>36351945+ I'll find Wendy. + You pulse back. + Stay there and wait for us. +Another pulsed sigh of relief, an easing of tensions. + Thank you, Chiaki-san. Please make haste, Sayaka-chan and I will establish a defensive position here. Yuma says that there's a lot more resistance in the upper floors, so we'll have to move forward as one group if we've any chance to punch through and get to the main objective. +Alright. That's good. You'll notify her immediately once you find Wendy, then.+ Please do, Chiaki-san. I'm counting on you. + And it's here that the connection between you and Mami grows cold and silent, like a commlink being severed abruptly."Both of us know what kind of person Tomoe Mami is." You could still hear what that monster said, earlier. "What kind of Magical Girl she's become. Do you really think she won't step in once she realizes just what is happening to you? Once she realizes your role in all of this? Once she sees what you're about to become?"You shake your head, gritting your teeth, and wipe the blood from your face. The bitch was just trying to psych you out, that's all. Mami wouldn't betray you. She was the one who pushed you into doing this in the first place! She wouldn't...!"And of all the people who will abandon you, Tomoe Mami will be the one to betray you first."...You shake your head again, forcing the thought out of your mind, before turning to Kyoko - your best friend busily and clumsily covering her bite wounds with adhesive bandages. "We're moving," You tell her. "We're--""Finding Wendy, I know. I heard." Kyoko grins at you, just as she slaps her bandage flat against her arm. "There, good as new!" She kicks her dropped spear up into the air and catches it with a flourish. "And now I'm all set, ready to kill more of these giant walkin' goat dudes AND find my best friend's 'merican ex!"...Well. At least she's still got pep after that. Isn't she tired or anything?[1/2]
>>36352720"Huh? Ah, nah. I mean, I was gettin' a bit pooped, but that was just the adrenalin, ya know?" She shakes her head. "Mami and I were panicking because you weren't responding, and then when I found you you weren't wakin' up...then these goat guys come barging in, yellin' something about intruders and wavin' their choppers around. I had to immediately go into DEFEND MURDERFACE mode, ya know? Put up a barricade and everything, and--"Kyoko stopps here, her one eye going wide. "Wait. You..you cut through my barricade? I don't remember callin' it away, and you were there and then here in a blink of an eye, and--" She looks down at the Golden Weapon sheathed at your waist, a good amount of awe and fear in her gaze. "Whoa. That's...that's something else, Murderface. Just how fucked is that thing, anyway?"How do you respond?Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.Wanna try it out?Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.
>>36352752>[x]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.Goldun wepons r bad.
>>36352752>[X]Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.
>>36352752>[x]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.
[x]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.
>>36352752[X]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.QUESTION: Does Kyoko actually know about the whole soul-trapped-in-GW thing? Does she know about Kirika?
>>36352752>Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.
>>36352752>[X]Wanna try it out?>....Just kidding.
>>36352752>[X]Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.Goldan wepons r bad, mmkay
>>36352752>Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.We want to emphasize the danger of the Golden Weapons. Especially one with Kirika.Actually, did Kirika have anything against Kyoko in particular?
>>36352752[X]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever."In other news Kirika is the same as ever.."
>>36352752>[X]Almost as fucked as me.
>>36352817Nope. Just suspected her of wanting to get into Oriko's pants.Nothing major.
>>36352752>Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.
>>36352752>[x]Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.
>>36352752[X]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.[X]Not all of them are this much of a bitch, though.
>>36352752[x]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever.We gotta keep that hunger in check.
>>36349769Shadowruns can be caused by absolutely anything YOU KNOW
>>36352752>[x]Wanna try it out?
>>36352752>[X]Wanna try it out?>[x] ... That was a joke>[X]Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.I wanted to vote for "wanna try it out?" alone, but I can't do that to our best bro.>>36352817I think she was a little pissed about the Oriko and fancy underwear.
>>36352752>[x]Really, really fucked. Enough that I'm going to use it as little as possible in this operation. ...Or ever."You tell me. How fucked was Kirika? I barely remember her."
>>36352776...Dude, you're kinda three or so years late on the whole "Stopping the Quest Cancer" thing.
>>36352752[X]Pretty fucked. That's why I'm the only one who can use it.
>>36352793I'm 100% sure we told about it to Blueberry. Not sure about Kyoubro.
>>36352907>I think she was a little pissed about the Oriko and fancy underwear.It was not about the underwear. It was about Kirika being insecure overprotective jealous lover.
>>36352752[x] wanna try it out?I wanna see what happens
>>36352793>Does Kyoko actually know about the whole soul-trapped-in-GW thing?I'm pretty sure we mentioned something when we first saw her gold spear she had made because she thought the golden weps were super cool. She knows that the golden weapons have some powerful medicine about them at least.
>>36352994Well, I don't.
>>36352994I do too, but after Kharn's warning, now is not the time and this is not the place.
>>36353029you're right. bad idea.Give it to Sayaka.
Alright, sorry to cut these early everyone, but I've got work in six hours! Let's try for an earlier continuation this Friday!Thank you for everyone's participation, feedback is always great! We have two writeups tonight, so questions, if any, answered after them!
The Iron CircleChapter VI: Skitarii"Well...I've certainly seen better performances, novitiate, but I guess for your first time you didn't do so bad."The combat simulator disengaged, bringing Honoka out of the world of cybernetics and back into the world of flesh. Her recliner-chair hissed as it moved back into the upright position.Honoka found herself back in the rounded training chamber of the Toxotes, the Fourth Officio's Order of Vindicares. A row of simulators lined the walls, while a fully equipped shooting lane dominated half of the room. A training course, mocked up to look like an urban combat zone, occupied the other half; a dozen Magical Girls were busy using it, adding their bellowing guns and stamping iron feet to the general din of the Toxotes hall.The red-haired Vindicare groaned as she pulled herself out of the simulator. Today, she was out of her exoskeleton and was wearing a sports bra and spats. Several dozen electrodes--designed to simulate concussive impacts and pain inside the VR world--snaked away from her worn and beaten body as she chugged from a water bottle."'Better performances'?" she said, breathless. "Strike Leader, I-I'm not really sure what I was supposed to do there! Who were those guys, Spetznaz? SEALs?" She paused to take another drink. "I couldn't use magic, I couldn't leave the designated mission area, and I only had a rifle, a pistol, some ammo, and a suit of armor I barely knew how to use. How was I supposed to take on fifteen spec-ops with armored support?" A pause."Er, ma'am," she added hastily.[1/11]
>>36353201Thanks Decu! Go get some sleep.
>>36352752Wanna try it
[2/11]Strike Leader Lau loomed over her like an iron effigy. She stood in a Light chassis, a somewhat stocky, bulky form painted blue-on-black and built with a smooth, bald head. Her arms were crossed across her chest while her red eye-lenses steadily regarded Honoka. The red-haired Vindicare had read up on the Vindicare squad leader before the training session had started: three year veteran of the Fourth, promoted to Strike Leader six months ago. Sterling track record, reputation for iron discipline and steely nerves in combat. "The goal of this test wasn't so much to see if you could kill fifteen elite soldiers and an IFV," said the Strike Leader, "as much as it was a test to see how you'd perform in that armor." The Strike Leader leaned over and poked Honoka in the shoulder. She had plenty of strong muscle there, along with puckered, ragged marks of tough scar tissue—proud badges earned through years of hard, dangerous service—yet Lau's steel finger easily pressed into her shoulder as though the meat there was just skin and fat. "Powered armor isn't just a fancy suit that makes you run a little faster and punch a little harder and has some sweet gadgets built into it. When you wear it, you're stepping into a whole new world of tactical possibilities. Wall in your way? Run through it. Need a higher vantage point? Just climb up a building, no need for stairs. Someone shooting you with peashooters? Just walk up to them and punch them out, they can't hurt you." Lau unhooked a tablet from her belt and started it up. "Which is good, because we're one of the smallest Officios out there, and most of us are too busy with R&D to go out on missions much. That means it's once in a blue moon when we're NOT badly outnumbered. All we've got is marginally bigger guns and an edge in the 'fancy gadgets' department; we better exploit that as much as we can, or we're fucked."
>>36353201Please do not overwork yourself.
>>36353201Thanks for the thread, Decu.Make sure to get enough rest.
>>36353180Well she was the one who has gone rules of nature on a giant ass mech alreadySo it fits more anyway
[3/11]She thrust the tablet towards Honoka for her to see. A tap on the screen showed Honoka a video; it was footage taken from another run on the VR trainer, using the same scenario Honoka had just finished. It was like watching a summer blockbuster action film. The armored girl bounded up buildings like a simian beast, barely slowing down as she bounded across the closely packed rooftops. She punched people through walls, either sending them crashing through a house or or ramming her mailed fist through a barricade and into a man's head. At one point, the girl seized a downed soldier by the leg and hurled it at the rest of his squad, sending them hurtling back in a heap of broken bones and limbs. It was the sort of thing, thought Honoka as she watched the girl slowly pry open an IFV's hatch with her armored hands, that the really crazy Magical Girls she knew would try to do. ...no, she realized. Not crazy. Crazy would have involved laughing, cackling, drinking the blood of your enemies along with their pain and fear. Crazy would have meant killing for the sake of killing, destroying for the sake of destruction, thirsting for an orgy of death and ruin. This, she thought, was too measured and precise for crazy. This was simply power granted by ingenuity and engineering. This was the product of an Officio that brooked no weakness and demanded every one of its members be stronger and better than they were. An Officio armed with some of the most cutting-edge technology in the world. This was the Fourth Officio Assassinorum. "You see?" asked the Strike Leader. "This is how a Machine fights. This is how -we- fight. When we pick up our weapons and deploy to kill some poor pack of idiots, the usual rules go out the window, because there's going to be just a few of us against a lot of them, and we'd be stupid if we play the game the usual way." She took the tablet away from Honoka and set it aside. "So...”
>>36353260[4/11]Despite Lau's impassive expression, the red-haired Vindicare could hear the smile in her voice. “Now that you've seen what you're actually supposed to do: you up for round 2?" - Hours later, Honoka stumbled out of the training room, panting and utterly spent. Lau walked behind her to ensure she didn't trip and crack her skull open. Her entire body felt sore. Bruised, even. It was like she was back in Basic again, puking up her breakfast into the dirt as she crawled under barbed wire, trying not to piss or shit herself from the fear and exhaustion. Repeated jolts from the VR simulator left her feeling like a pack of Eversors had worked her over with sticks, but then there was also the mental fatigue. It was difficult to think clearly; forming thoughts through the tired, muddied waters of her mind felt like a herculean task. "Hurts, doesn't it?" said Lau. "I remember being stuck in one of those for my first test, back when I was a greenhorn. Threw up all over the instructor's feet, had to mop it up afterwards. Ha!" She glanced at the flagging Ninth Vindicare. “Hanging in there, novitiate? You look dead on your feet.” Honoka managed to wheeze out a weak laugh. “Ha ha, well, I've had worse...” “Worse?” “Yes. 'Just a 9mm with two magazines against a Witch' worse.” “Heh. Well, just you sit tight, the fun's just started.” A cargo drone ambled by, and Honoka had to resist the urge to hitch a ride on it. By now, it was past evening in the Olympia. Its cool halls were almost quiet, with the majority of the manufactories chugging along at only half-power, rendering the usual dull roar into something more of a sedate rumble. Honoka could hear her and Lau's footsteps clanging against the steel floors, echoing, reverberating through the mobile headquarter's iron bowels. As she trudged down the long corridors, she mulled on the last several hours of grueling VR training, and felt a pang of disappointment at the memory.
[5/11]There was no other way to put it—Honoka simply couldn't beat the simulation. It was one thing to realize you had an entire new set of stratagems at your disposal; it was another thing entirely to actually employ them in the heat of battle, even one simulated in a silicon world. The worst part was that her own instincts were her greatest enemy. Four years of habits and training, hammered into her brain through mission after mission after blood-drenched, sanity-tearing mission, didn't just go away on a whim. She kept hesitating at important junctures, unable to bring herself to go up a building or bust down a wall—the little voice in her head wouldn't stop screaming about how stupid an idea it was, how she wasn't an Eversor and shouldn't act like one, throttling her brain until she stuck to the tried-and-true basics that had kept her alive for four violent years. One thought in particular made her grimace. Was that disappointment she'd heard in Lau's voice as the Strike Leader adjourned for the day? Honoka wasn't sure: on one hand, Lau did mention she had markedly improved by the time she got up from the VR chair...on the other hand, the Strike Leader hadn't been terribly ecstatic either. Her tone was dry, almost apathetic. Maybe she was being sarcastic But at the same time, Lau wasn't a terribly exictable person—maybe that was just her way of being nice. That was the trouble with these Ironforms, thought Honoka. So many of them went around with a poker face. At times, it felt like she was in an entire room filled with...well. With emotionless robots. Lost in thought, the red-haired Vindicare barely noticed the figure standing in the hall before her. "Hmm? Oh, didn't see you there, Skitarius,” said Lau. “Back to your duties, bint Dammam.”
[6/11]A vaguely humanoid shape, swathed in a billowing red robe, the crimson standing out brightly amidst the endless grays of Olympia's iron corridors. It jolted at the sound of Lau's voice, and the quiet whimper coming from the figure told Honoka that it was a girl. A metal hand erupted from the mass of cloth and parted it, revealing a face. - "Oh. Uh..." The girl before her was small: petite, even. She had a shock of short, unruly grey hair, while her large, innocent doe-eyes were a warm honey brown, hiding behind a pair of circular eye glasses framing dusky skin. The rest of her was mostly obscured by the voluminous red clothing, with her curious metal limb grasping at the robe's hood. Unlike the smooth plating of Light Ironforms, the girl's hand was like the inside of a machine; gears, springs, pistons, and a dozen other different mechanisms moved and played their delicate dance inside the limb. Its construction—and the entirely natural constitution of its owner's face—made Honoka suspect that it was an advanced prosthetic, rather than part of an Ironform. The girl seemed to have noticed Honoka's staring, as she hurriedly covered her arm back up and clutched it to her chest. Her doe-eyes were strained, trying to look at anything that wasn't Honoka and Lau, and she seemed eager to do as Lau said and leave. Honoka offered a hand and, despite her fatigue, managed to put on a smile. "Hello! I don't think we've met? I'm Honoka Iwakura, from the Ninth. I'm new here." The girl eyed the proffered hand warily, as though it were some sort of trap. At last, she replied with a murmur. “H-h-hello...”
[7/11]Her voice was soft as a feather, made all the weaker by the burdens of nervousness and anxiety. The dull background thrum of the Olympia's beating heart, quiet as it was from its resting state, still threatened to swallow it. Her metal hand clutched at her robe-like clothes and drew them closer, as a child would a security blanket, leaving Honoka's own hanging awkwardly in the air. “Erm...” “...” 'Well...' thought Honoka. The trembling girl's gaze was frenetic, flickering to Honoka, then to the floor, then to the ceiling, then to Lau, then back to Honoka again. 'Alright, then...' To Honoka's relief, Lau chose that moment to step in. Her voice was cold and carried the hint of reprimand. “Ahem. As I said, Skitarius bint Dammam, back to your duties.” Bint Dammam flinched as if struck. “I-I'm sorry, Strike Leader, I was just trying t-to say h—” “-Now-, Skitarius.” “Yes!” squeaked the girl. “Right away, I'm s-s-so sorry...” Without another word, the petite girl made a quick bow and scurried off, stumbling every so often over the hem of her long robes. Honoka threw a glance at Lau. The Strike Leader was as impassive as ever, but something...something in he posture added a hint of tension to the atmosphere. Lau's face-plate was unmoving—customized, as it was, by a pragmatic combat veteran, it wasted little space with the fine facial-expression servos girls like Barbara put on their Ironforms. But from where Honoka was standing, Lau seemed to be glaring. At last, the red-robed girl finally turned a corner and disappeared from sight. Lau stood for another long moment, watching, until she finally started to move. “Hmph. Sorry about that, novitiate,” she said. “Let's get going. We're sending you on an outing in a few days and we've got plenty more training to do, so I need you fully rested.” She beckoned as she strode forward. “Back to your quarters, now. Hurry up.” -
[8/11]The rest of their sojourn to Honoka's room was without incident. Honoka rathered that there was; anything would that broke the uncomfortable silence would have been preferable. Alas, nothing was forthcoming, so she broke the awkward quiet with a question. “I have to ask...” she said, her voice hesitant, “who was that? And what's a 'Skitarius'? I don't think anyone ever explained what that was.” There was a noticeable pause, a moment's hesitation in her stride, before Strike Leader Lau replied. When she spoke, her voice sounded as though it had to be drawn out, fettered by reluctance and, from what Honoka could puzzle out, a hint of shame. “Amal bint Dammam, one of our newer members of the Skitarii. The Skitarii are where we put our...hmm.” Lau paused, considering her words before plunging on. “To put it bluntly, it's where we put our rejects and failures.” She continued, heedless of Honoka's startled expression. “The...transition process of changing your flesh-and-blood body to an Ironform isn't always successful. It's stressful on the Soul Gem to have it go from controlling an organic body to an artificial one, you see,” she said, tapping her metallic head, “since Soul Gems weren't designed to be stuck inside a metal shell. This is why transferees start off by getting augmentations—replace bits of your body with prosthetics, get the Soul Gem used to controlling artificial body parts. But, even after acclimatizing their bodies with augmetics, not all subjects can get through the Ironform process. Simply put; it's traumatizing. It's just how it is, and we can't figure out a way to make it any more pleasant. Not everyone can withstand what their Soul Gems have to go through to take the final step.” In the hallway, the bulky form of a Heavy Ironform thudded past. The girl nodded in greetings as it passed them, and Lau nodded back.
[9/11]“Most make it through and fully join our ranks; out of the rest, some either die or start to Witch Out in the middle of the process—though we have failsafes for so the latter doesn't cause a shitstorm right inside the Olympia.” Here, her tone made a turn for the dark. “Some, though, either quit midway or don't try at all, and to them we give the option to transfer out. Those who elect to stay—those are the ones we put in our Skitarii division.” She all but ground the last words out. “Most choose not to transfer.” Honoka nodded slowly, digesting all the information. “I'm sorry if I'm prying, Strike Leader, but, you don't seem...very pleased with the Skitarius division.” As always, the Lau's face was a leaden mask, but here, Honoka could easily hear the contempt dripping from her voice. “They don't pull their weight,” grumbled Lau. “If they'd held out just a little longer, or weren't such useless cowards, then we wouldn't be babying them like we are now. The Warsmith goes out of her way to make them feel relevant, but, urgh...” She growled and rubbed her head, the metal of her hand and cranium squeaking as they rubbed one another. “All that time and money on the Tactical Dreadnought systems, just so the Skitarii can finally get off their asses and be useful in heavy combat? What a waste. They should have all transferred out when we gave them the chance—our Officio would've been better for it. We don't have time for deadweights in the Fourth.” The remorseless cold of Lau's rant made Honoka shiver. It was like being back in front of the Stradale sisters again, in front of the harsh scorn the Fourth was infamous for but Honoka had hoped wasn't true. She stole a glance at Lau, and from twitching and clenching fists decided that this matter was no longer worth pursuing. -
[10/11]They at last reached the small cell that was Honoka's quarters, and for this the red-haired Vindicare was grateful. The door hissed as it slid aside, and Honoka hurled herself onto her small cot; despite the stiff fabric, to her worn-out body the cot might as well have been a luxury four-poster bed. “Home, sweet home,” chuckled Lau as Honoka let out a sigh of relief—both at the opportunity for rest, and at Lau's apparently lighter mood. “Sleep tight, novitiate. You've got more armor training tomorrow. After that, we're sending you off on a mission.” “About that...” Honoka managed to roll herself onto the side, facing Lau. “I've only been here for, like, a day or two. Isn't it a bit early for me to be sent out on a mission?” Lau let out a grunt. “You're not wrong, and the mission we're sending you on isn't exactly going to be a milk run. But, the Logic Engines are forecasting a Witch not too far away, and you're not exactly new to the Witch-hunting business, yourself, so we figured you'd be able to handle yourself if we bring you along.” The Strike Leader turned to leave. “In any case, rest up. You'll get a proper briefing later.” Honoka managed a tired, half-hearted salute. “Yes, ma'am.” The door hissed shut as the Strike Leader left. - Heady stuff, this Skitarii business. This was what Honoka thought as she lay on her cot, letting the gentle tides of exhaustion carry her into the deep waters of sleep. This was what Honoka continued to think, as days later she found herself sitting in the passenger compartment of a Fourth Officio gunship, surrounded by all manner of equipment and three girls in Heavy Ironforms. One of them was the blue-and-black bulk of Strike Leader Lau.
[11/11]Something about the Skitarius division rubbed her the wrong way. No one had told her what it was, despite her hours-long initial tour through every inch of the Olympia. Not Petra, not Barbara, not Fiona. It was as though they didn't exist, and in the oblivion of non-existence they would have remained had Honoka had not stumbled upon Amal by chance. Come to think of it, mused Honoka as she checked her safety straps, she'd caught glimpses of red robes here and there on previous days. She hadn't thought much of them at the time, since she was too busy being awed by all the wonders the Fourth had to offer, but now she realized she'd seen at least a few red-robed girls here and there, in just about every part of the Olympia. All of them had kept their heads down. All of them had huddled together with other red-clad girls, either staying out of everyone's way on their own volition, or put there by the rest of the Fourth. Suddenly, Honoka wondered if Amal's behavior was simply shyness, or something else entirely. Was this the price of failure? thought Honoka. Was this what it meant if you just weren't strong enough to score a slick robot body at the end of a year? She wasn't completely sure if she wanted to leave the Ninth just yet. But it was sobering to think about, whether the Fourth was the right place for her. Honoka had always assumed she'd be a natural fit into the Machines, but after all the failures in the simulation room, after knowing about the Skitarii, after knowing what fate awaited her if the Fourth found her wanting... Things no longer seemed so certain.-CHAPTER END-Many thanks as always to Deculture for letting me write this.An additional thanks to Deculture, Dan, and Trash for the Barbara art!Pastebin: http://pastebin.com/NMpJXfGR
>>36353201Thanks for the thread! And get to bed soon!
Human Resources 7: Make A Wishhttp://pastebin.com/CXZsfUi3Somehow, they chose this.We might be starting the third of the three storylines next writeup, unless I decide to write Mercy Killing first. Really I should just write anything at all, it's been about a month. With that said, as usual, thanks go to Deculture, Twiceborn and Steph for looking this over beforehand!
>>36348743I don't care if I'm five hours late to the thread, I need to say thisMadoka is to Homura as Mami is to Chiaki>Saved her from being killed in a witch's barrier along with a friend>was kind to her, showed her the ropes of being a magical girl>light hair, twin tailsThis is why homuhomu switched tack to talking about Mami- not necessarily because it's true, but because she knows that Chiaki imprinted on her instead of Madoka like she did
We interrupt the regular schedule of TTC to bring you the following message:IT'S HAPPENING.[[ 1 year and 2 months after Chapter 0 ]]X-Chapter 1: The Nightmare Returns.I was woken up by a scream. "S-Suzume, it's happening again!" I hurriedly fetched my old, most trusted friend. The Callidus had already noticed as well that something was wrong when I entered her room. "It's just like a year ago!" I tried not to panic and steadied myself."I'll warn the others, you go check up on her. Contain her if necessary... and good luck Silke" Suzume's voice was composed and calm even in a time like this. I nodded energetically and left with the same hurry I came. I hoped things would not be as bad as they had been last time... one year ago... a night where everything almost turned to disaster...I barged into the Eversor's room without any warning. She was on her knees on the ground, grabbing her head with both hands and muttering things too faintly and too fast for it to make any sense. Her presence and magic were highly unstable, flickering and twisting, but it was not Despair I could feel coming from her. It was a frantic sense of urgency, panic."Ryuko!" I called out to her, trying to snap her out of it, but I knew it would be hopeless. This already happened before."You're not supposed to be there..you can't be there..why are you there? don't. Don't. DON'T. You don't belong there. It'll hurt you. It'll stalk you. It'll haunt you. Don't be there.. why are you there? you shouldn't be there..."I knew it was useless because I tried and tried one year ago, but I couldn't get through her when was in this state. Ryuko had tamer episodes of insanity where physical contact or a sharp tone could be enough to snap her back to reality, but as she was now I had no other choice than to try to knock the tainted Eversor out. I lowered the intensity of my suit and let the anti-magic do its dirty business, focusing it at her. [1/8]
>>36353477That wasn't the second writeup, I just forgot to tell Deculture that I have one lined up. Sorry if that was confusing.
>>36353201Take it easy!
She screamed again; it was an unnatural, disturbing scream like that of a creature or monster. I bit my lower lip slightly as I could feel all the pain and fright in that voice; as I could read it on her face. She had always been hiding sorrows and suffering, tried at she might to hide it, but this was something more. It was something I couldn't bear to look at for too long. It's at times like this that I was glad for my helmet; It hid my tears and allowed me to keep a professional look even if behind it I was wavering. All I ever wanted was to help people and make them happy, so why did I have to end up surrounded by such sorrows?"I won't let you..I won't let you..I.. I'll come for you.. don't.. don't die..not there..don't let it get to you..don't let it overtake you.. you've had enough.. you don't need this.. you don't deserve this.."Her energy was going out of control. It was happening again. Just like last time. +Suzume! It's no good! I'll have to use extreme measures.+ I immediately pulsed with urgency, the response coming instantly. +Understood.+I had no choice, I lowered the settings of my Suit even further and blasted Ryuko again. This time she flinched and leaned forward, letting out a large amount of blood from her mouth. It had always been blood for her; some kind of twisted, darkened foul blood I didn't like to see. I'd almost feel better if it was just vomit like everyone else..."Please come back to your senses!" I desperately pleaded, only to be met by a deathly glare that cut my breath; blood still coating her lips. "Don't try to stop me! This time I'll.. this time I'll make it in time! I won't allow anything like that to happen again!"[2/8]
She never told us what she saw or did the last time she left. It was the one thing she never opened up to us about even after all this time, so I had no clue what she was talking about. It was pointless however, even though she spat her words without compromise, I could tell there was a plea within; a begged request. I couldn't in my soul and conscience find it inside me to blast her a third time. I couldn't try to stop her when it looked like everything she ever cared about was on the verge of being destroyed irremediably. I let her go.A rip tore itself into the fabric of reality, not all too unlike what a Barrier did, but localized onto a small area rather than over a wide one. I could feel all sorts of pain and negative emotions coming from the scar-like maelstrom of shifting colors that opened behind the tainted Eversor. It screamed of Witches and hopelessness. In just a second she turned around and leaped inside the rip which seemed to detonate, but damaged nothing and all traces of it were gone by the time the explosion of light receded.+She's gone.+====I took a deep breath. The world around me shifted and morphed to become an horrible procession of death and malevolence. I didn't know Its name, but I have known of Its existence for a while now and it wasn't the first time I come here. I also know at my core it won't be the last. This place... this nameless Hell... I have conflicting feelings about it.I hate this place. It has come to represent one of my greatest failures; one I will never forgive myself for. I should have been here for her, but I wasn't. I was lost and I couldn't reach her. The memory stings just as badly now than it did back then. I won't fail you again.[3/8]
But I also love this place, and I don't exactly know why. I know it's extremely unhealthy for me to be here, but I can't help but feel strangely at home. It's just comfortable... somewhat, in ways I can't even begin to explain. My magic seems immensely easier to cast; as if there is no strain whatsoever to my Soul anymore so long as I'm here. It feels... warm.But I can't let those thoughts slow me down.My legs carried me like wings as I roamed through this realm of hell with great speed. As long as I was there... it was as if I could always go all out, as if I could keep going and not lose any energy. So I took advantage of it and began the search in earnest. No compromises, no holding back, and, in the end I hope, no regrets. No matter how fast I was and how well I may have known some parts of this shifting hellscape, it was impossible to avoid the Witches fully, or the natural hazards for that matter. Or maybe it was just me who sucked at stealth? no matter. This was a desperate time so I resorted to desperate measures. I reached into my inventory and took the Satrophine container, slowing down just a little bit to focus on undoing the magical seal that kept the thing shut. It was no true challenge as I was the one who sealed it in the first place, so I made short work of it.I hesitated for a split second, painfully aware of how powerful the drug was, but I had little choice. If I wanted to carve my way here I would need every little bit of strength I could muster. The Witches were just too strong to be dealt with in any other way. I swallowed a dose and put the container back in my Inventory.[4/8]
The effect was immediate, and immediately daunting. I never knew a drug as mercilessly addictive as this one. Power immediately surged through my entire body and my mind sharpened to impossible levels for a time. It was the kind of power you could get drunk off with just the smallest taste of, but I've seen this drug entirely consume those who fall to its thrall. Because of that I had always remained wary of it, despite how... admittedly fucking incredible it felt to be on. That feeling, combined with what I said earlier about this ethereal realm's... I had to focus to not lose myself in it. "Well~Well, what do we have here?"I stopped and froze. This voice. Why did it have to be this voice? Why now of all times? "You've been naughty, doing something like that so early... it's like you actually -wanted- it." That impossibly silky voice made my guts twist. I could just hear her licking her lips behind me."Fuck. Off. I have no time for you right now.""How rude, and here I came just to see how you were doing."She's lying. All she can say is lies. "Don't give me that crap, you're trying to slow me down so I end up failing and--" I tensed, feeling a long, soft tongue on the back of my neck. I shivered and resumed running again, but the voice didn't let go of me. Even when my body was pushed up way past speeds it had little right to reach, this bitch was still keeping up with me. She always kept up."I might be~ but you're still being rude, refusing to look at me again... it's almost like you don't like my form..." the impostor managed to sound genuinely saddened, but I didn't buy it, I knew better. I refused to look at her. I refused to acknowledge her. "And now the silent treatment again... you really need to fix that attitude of yours, else you'll... well, no, that's a given~" she giggled.[5/8]
"SHUT UP." I roared. I focused on the endless ruins around me and kept to whatever high grounds I could. At the moment I found myself to be overseeing a frozen parody of an once-city. steel was covered in frost and icicles of dark crystal that rose and fell like ice. It snowed as well. It could almost look like a scene from a holiday... if it hadn't been from the fact that it snowed powdered bones. Human bones I'd be willing to bet."No matter how much you deny it, you know inside you I'm right; I'll -always- be right~" Her voice was still silky, but turned as cold as the dead city around me. "Go ahead and check it, you've gotten sooo bad already~" I grunted lightly and humored her , slowing again just a little to check on my Soul Gem. Like she said it had already darkened way past what I would have liked and I was still just starting with my search. This realm of death and forgotten ends was more vast than could be comprehended. Damn Bitch was right."Seeee?~" The Witch whispered in my ear and I barely resisted the temptation to elbow her smug face so hard it'd break the skull. "I don't see anything."I grumbled as I lied. "Don't. Lie." she immediately scolded me with a tone of contempt. "You can't lie to me and you know it." I don't know nothin' about this shit."I am you."I couldn't resist, I stopped, turned around and swiped at her face with my left claw. She dodged, unfortunately. She always dodges, goddamn bitch. Why can't you just BLEED for me once in a while!?[6/8]
She was... much more beautiful than I ever was. Forget about Eldritchian horrors that look like nothing, she was... different. Fully human looking save for the limbs, she had flawless, pristine snow white skin and traits, with matching flowing white hair that almost reached the ground, but never quite. Her claws were longer than mines and reached back into some sort of jet black armor covering her fore-arms and a bit past the elbows, almost to the shoulder but falling short by about 10 centimeters and showing off her bare shoulders. Her legs were the same and her snow-skinned thighs showed a little between the metal and her short black sleeveless dress."I will never become you, how many times do I have to tell you that?" She just smiled and shook her head lightly, as if looking at a child being cutely unreasonable. Fuck I hate her; I hate her the most."Repeat it all you want, pointless denial doesn't reach me." I twitched at that, tempted to strike at her again. "You know you can't escape your fate." she reached closer, putting her face just a centimeter away from mine. "You know it better than anyone, don't you?" I know it. "There will never be any rest for you." I know that as well. "You will fall, and when you do, I will laugh.""I know I won't be able to have a peaceful death anymore, but see, I've got a really simple solution that just might work." I smirked and she stared back. "Oh really? What would that be?" she asked and I laughed, dryly. "Don't. Die." I replied and she laughed, mockingly. "That's impossible. You might as well just give in already."I rolled my eye and opened my mouth to give some sort of witty retort, but I was silenced.Strawberries and white chocolate. She tasted like strawberries and white chocolate...[7/8]
I remained shocked for a second or two but quickly enough freed myself and jumped back, the taste lingering in my mouth with the feeling of that tongue she stole. If looks could kill, my glare would have murdered her thrice over. Unfortunately, she was still alive and smiling. I checked my Soul Gem immediately, looking for anything she might have done to me, but it didn't seem like that was the case."You've always been so easy to tease, but no, I didn't do anything to you... at least nothing you haven't already done to yourself. You know what you should really look out for?" she tilted her head lightly and smiled. "I don't want to know." I flatly responded. She wasn't going to listen to me, but whatever. "That drug of yours Do you want to know what it's really made of?" "No" I responded again. Just the same, it was pointless again. "What if I told you it's actually made of... " she paused for a moment, as if looking for words. "From shattered hopes and despair ~" Her smile widened and I blinked, taking a moment to try and understand the implied imagery. "...That's impossible, there's no way what you're implying could be done." She shrugged and shook her head again with that pseudo-disappointed expression. I just stopped paying attention to her and resumed my search, running again. She kept up, annoyingly enough. "Have I ever lied to you?~" I grit my teeth and bit back the urge to try to claw her again. "When you claimed to be me." she sighed lightly. "Now you're just contradicting yourself, but alright, I've bothered you enough. You'll never make it in time now.~""ETEEERNAAAA"My claws fell onto empty air, her presence gone.[8/8]
>>36353201Thanks for running!http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?tags=Magical%20Girl%20Noir%20QuestThread has been archived!Why are witches so lewd?
>>36353482also it probably helps that Chiaki has only had one timeline to obsess over Mami compared to thousands and thousands