LAST TIME, ON DRAGON SLAYER QUESTYour name is Noah Lee - straight B- student, scrawny runt, and lover of old ballroom dance vinyls. After a chance encounter during detention, you discovered that you possess the mystical "Type O-alpha" blood-type, which marks you as...Monster bait. No cool powers. No "chosen one" status. But apparently, if you bleed around the wrong people, they will explode into gigantic, reality-warping monsters known as "Dragons" and immediately try to kill you. Silver lining! Surviving a Dragon attack gave you magic powers - "Alchemy", the ability to enforce your intent on the world and reshape matter and energy.After a fraught encounter with your teacher, who burst into a Dragon and attempted to kill you, you were saved by Kendra Shields (call her Ken), a gruff, battle-worn two-star Slayer for the Fraternal Order Of Dragon Slayers (FOODS), and became her apprentice in order to learn enough so that you could defend yourself from Dragons.Not a lot has happened over the past month - which is good, because by god, did you need the break. The city is crawling with agents from the three major Dragon-related factions you know of - FOODS, l'Ordine, the Vatican's Dragon-hunting black ops unit, which is certainly a sentence, and Pandora, a militant organization composed of ex-FOODS members dedicated to capturing and studying Dragons humanely.That being said, it's pretty good that nothing happened, because you were a little tired of things constantly happening. You did some physical and combat training with Ken, learned the basics of first aid Alchemy with Dr. Hyde, and looked into your forbidden binder full of illegal alchemy some more, where you made an uncomfortable discovery.After looking into a list of symptoms described by Nicholas Flamel's book, you have come to the conclusion that you might have an "Egregore", an Alchemical construct that consists of part of another person's (or many personses's) soul inside of you, guiding your actions. When and where you would have gotten an Egregore is a mystery you've yet to unravel, but enough of the symptoms fit that you're definitely considering it as something that's happened to you. The presence of what feels like multiple trains of thought in your head at once, missing time, self-doubt, seizures... Stuff like that.As a result of that, you decided that it might be prudent to look into your past a little, and when your mom was at work, you snuck into her disused bedroom and rummaged through some of her old photos. What you discovered was the presence of a strange old man who'd never been mentioned before, nor one you have any recollection of, in a number of photos of your Mom and Dad. Tentatively naming him "Grandpa", you looked into him and discovered that he might be one "Georgio D'Angelo", who is otherwise gone from the internet. No information besides a name.
Slightly more pleasant to discover was the names of your maternal grandparents, Zhao Qiang and Lee Xiuying. Qiang was an investigative journalist who later managed to become the editor-in-chief of his small local newspaper - a not insignificant feat, considering, uh, racial tensions back then - and Xiuying, unfortunately, doesn't have any information on her. You assume she didn't do anything particularly notable, then.You spent some time after that decompressing, given that even on weeks when nothing happens you still somehow manage to induce some sort of strain in yourself, and hung out with Rebecca George over the weekend. Since Homecoming was (and still is, even) coming up, you decided to ask her out - to your surprise, she said yes. The week after that passed like molasses, even as you asked your mom for whatever aid she could render, which she got in the form of "getting you a nice looking outfit fitted with a friend of hers" and some sage advice."Look. Noah. If anything happens - make sure you're wearing a condom."You did not know how to respond to that.
>>4936184And, well. Here it is. Your first social outing of any major capacity since Josh's party where you A: met Rebecca and B: almost got into a fight with a Dragon. Your mom drops you off inconspicuously by the parking lot, a little bit away where everyone else's parents are dropping them off, and gives you a kiss on the forehead. "Good luck, have fun, call me if you need anything, and make sure you don't drink enough that any teachers can catch you.""Shouldn't you be telling me not to drink?" You ask, adjusting your suit and tie a little bit. Your armpits are already soaked through with nervous sweat, but also uncomfortable sweat, and heat sweat, so you're fanning yourself a little bit with your hand."Yes." Your mom says, bluntly, leaning over the middle bit of the car to kiss you on the forehead again. "Have fun, kiddo.""I'll try, but I make no guarantees." You reply, opening up the car door and stepping out. She says something, and you don't really catch it, a wave of nausea slipping over you for a moment as the hair on the back of your neck stands up and then goes right back down. You shut the car door behind you and wave goodbye, and she waves back, pulling out of the parking lot and down the road.You clasp your hands together and start looking for Rebecca. You shoot her a text.noah/<I'm here. Are you here?>noah/<Um.>rebecca/<i'm here! c: out by the front entrance.>noah/<I'll be over in a second.>Why do you have to sound like a robot? You kick yourself mentally while making your way across the sidewalk, from these empty outskirts into the throng of high schoolers steadily surging their way inside. Almost all of the school is locked up tight right now, except the front lobby and the lunchroom, which you know from past experience has been cleared out to fit everyone.It doesn't take long to find Rebecca. She looks about as pretty as she usually does, but jacked up a couple of notches - she has makeup on, thin black rings around her eyes and light lipstick, with a sparkly, sequin-festooned dress in black and white and skull patterns. She shimmers when she moves, making your heart tie up in knots as she approaches, hooking an arm around yours."Hey there, lover boy. How you feeling?" She asks, adjusting her purse as she steps ahead of you, leading the two of you slowly inside, pushing into the back of the crowd."Nervous." You reply. She laughs and reaches up to fix your tie. "You look, um, pretty.""And you look handsome. What's there to be nervous about?" She asks, nudging you in the arm.>"Monster attack.">"Pretty girlfriend.">"Pretty date.">"Monster attack.">"Police.">"Nothing at all.">"Seizure.">"Monster attack.">"Monster attack.">Free Option.
GLOSSARY OF TERMShttps://pastebin.com/ipHuwpgLCHARACTER LISTINGhttps://pastebin.com/Y3wCvLWBLISTING ON SUPTGhttp://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive.html?tags=Dragon%20Slayer%20QuestPREVIOUS THREADhttp://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4894465/If you're enjoying the quest, your upvotes are greatly appreciated, but not at all required
Noah's DossierPhysical Health: DecentMental Health: MediocreStrength: MediocreAgility: MediocreGrades: MiddlingIntelligence: MiddlingPneuma Reserves: ExcellentPneuma Control: PoorAlchemical Sense: ExcellentAlchemical StylesForge Alchemy - Level 1Mobility Alchemy - Level 1Architectural Alchemy - Level 1First Aid Alchemy - Level 1Biomedical Alchemy (Forbidden) - Level 1
>>4936187>She says something, and you don't really catch it, a wave of nausea slipping over you for a moment as the hair on the back of your neck stands up and then goes right back downIs our mom an alchemist?>"Committing a social faux pas and losing the respect of everyone I've ever known"
>>4936216It wasn't an Alchemy word. Our fine tuned mild PTSD combat senses would've noticed immediately - there's a certain unearthly tone that can be detected when someone speaks Alchemy.
Rolled 2 (1d2)>>49362161>>49362382
>>4936238You try to say something appropriately smarmy, like "Committing a social faux pas and losing the respect of everyone I've ever known." - it's the first thing that comes to mind - but instead, you mumble out "Pretty girlfriend" and immediately blush like a tomato. She looks at you and giggles."Don't get ahead of yourself, kid." She replies, reaching up to tousle some of your thoroughly-gelled hair. You sniffle a little bit and follow the crowd inside, passing watching teachers no doubt on the lookout for any alcohol or other illicit substances. You make small talk with Rebecca, and occasionally the people around you, as you look around, the inner crook of your elbow getting a bit sweaty from being hooked around Rebecca's arm.Then, someone interrupts your reverie by clasping a hand over your shoulder. You turn around to come face to face with a grinning Josh, who gives you a thump on the back hard enough to make you cough. "Oh, you didn't tell me you were coming with a date! Big man!" He yells, loud enough to draw attention if not for the fact that everyone else is yelling. "Up top!"You give him a weak high five. He offers his hand to Rebecca and yells "Up top!" again, and she laughs, and gives him a high five.The air smells like mediocre-decent tier catering. Chicken fingers, french fries, little tiny sliders with toothpicks in them, mozzarella sticks, all in aluminum tins heated with little alcohol fires. The cafeteria has completely transformed, every single table hidden from sight in storage or, presumably since storage was full of tables, furled up and shunted against the walls, with only a couple left behind and moved to the lobby for people to put plates on and eat. The room is dark, but not too dark, a spectacular arrangement of colored lights casting their rainbow glow across the room more than enough for people to see by.It's loud. Loud enough to irritate, with incessant chatter and broadcast pop music thrumming through the speaker system, but not loud enough to disguise a familiar chill running down the back of your neck - albeit one that goes away just as fast, just like before. You're assailed by another thump on the back, and a deep contralto. "Hey, kid. Good to see you." comes a familiar and deeply unexpected voice, as you turn around to see Ken, dressed up in a modest dress pants and sleeve-rolled-up flannels. Your heart drops when you notice that she's carrying a guitar case with her."Who's this?" Rebecca asks, raising an eyebrow."Friend of mine. Ken." You blurt out. Ken smiles the nicest smile she can muster towards Rebecca and reaches out a hand.
>>4938902"Kendra Shields. But please, call me Ken." She says, shaking Rebecca's hand. "I'm teaching jolly boy over here how to not get his ass kicked.""Oh, is that what I've been feeling?" Rebecca asks, squeezing your upper arm and laughing."Yeah, we've got him from "toothpick" to "twig"." She replies, laughing back. It's the most human you've seen her really act in front of someone who's not a member of FOODS. "Anyway, I'm looking for that Jason's friend. Let me know if you see him, alright, Noah? I'm bad at finding people." Ken asks you, letting you take a couple of seconds to piece together that she's probably talking about our mysterious drug-and-binder distributor.Rebecca raises an eyebrow, and you notice that Josh has vanished into the crowd minutes ago, presumably to mingle. "You think he's here?" You ask, and then realize that you have some sort of cover to keep, and also make the realization that this is kind of inconvenient for you. "I didn't know he was the type for parties.""He said he might show up, so I'm on the lookout." Ken replies, and Rebecca squeezes you a little bit. >"Want me to go looking?" Duty calls, Rebecca.>"I'll keep an eye out." Good to have another pair of eyes for the villain.>"Well... Let me know if you find him?" C'mon, Peter Parker. Develop *some* work-life balance. It's Homecoming.>Free Option.
>>4938903>"Well... Let me know if you find him?" C'mon, Peter Parker. Develop *some* work-life balance. It's Homecoming.
>>4938903>Well... Let me know if you find him?" C'mon, Peter Parker. Develop *some* work-life balance. It's Homecoming.Unless we can weaponize pocket spaghetti, it's not like noah's in the mood for fighting
Sorry for the delay, everyone. The QM's Curse grips me by the balls harder every day.>>4938962>>4940299"Well, uh... let me know if you find him!" You say, patting Ken on the back. She smiles at you and nods, before vanishing into the crowd."What was that all about?" Rebecca asks, looking at you funny. Not a suspicious funny - at least, you don't think a suspicious funny - but definitely a funny sort of look nonetheless. "You sounded like you two were speaking in, like, spy code."Your heart immediately sinks and you impulse-blurt the first thing that comes to mind. "We were. Drugs."Rebecca cackles. "That would be more believable if you didn't give the overwhelming impression that you would melt into a pile of goo at the nearest whiff of weed." She says, sniffing the air near-silently. "Speaking of...""Someone smoking?" You ask. You think she took your quick excuse as a sarcastic confession of some sort, and it seems the momentary panic situation has passed."Not sure... Smells like fire though." She says, and your heart does a little trill when you sniff the air and catch a telltale hint of smoke. But you look around, and there doesn't appear to be anyone panicking, or screaming, or really any indication of any fire. The moment passes just as the last did. "And now it's gone... weird.""Weird. -->Do you wanna get some food?">Do you wanna go dance?">Wait, could you find someone to give you weed if I actually wanted to try it?">Wanna go somewhere a little more quiet?">Free Option.
>>4941622>Do you wanna get some food?"
>>4941622>Do you wanna go dance?"
Rolled 2 (1d2)>>49417871>>49418042
>>4942462>>4941804"Doooo... you wanna go dance?" You suggest, looking to get away from thoughts of fire and into something more pleasant. Rebecca turns to you and smiles, and you feel better."Yeah. Sure." She replies, grabbing you by the hand and dragging you through the crowd, closer to the speakers. The two of you make small talk as you mingle, until the volume increases to match the increased flow of high schoolers and the ability to functionally communicate effectively ceases outside of the motion of bodies.Motion happens, indeed. You're not a very good dancer, unfortunately - you're not coordinated, although you're definitely more coordinated than you were two months ago, and Rebecca isn't very good at it, either. She's gentle, keeping her arms against yours, and for the most part you bob and rock together, back and forth, near the edge of the crowd. Every so often you catch sight of Josh who looks like he's downright getting a lap dance from girls who seem far out of your league, and idly shake your head in mild amusement.The night goes on. It's pleasant. The music calms down to something slow, and suddenly you and Rebecca dancing together with little more than rocking side to side doesn't feel so out of place. Rebecca looks at you. You make eye contact back at her. Your hair stands up at the back of your neck, and this time, it doesn't go down. God, no, why? your brain shouts, in frustration at itself. Rebecca interrupts your thoughts as the feeling of crackling static in the air gets thicker, less deniable. The inevitable feeling of Alchemy. "Everything good? You're squeezing me a little hard, man."You ease up on her hips, not realizing. "Oh. Sorry.">"Could we go somewhere a little quieter? I think all the people are making me bug out a little bit.". We need to get her somewhere safe.>"Just lost in thought a little bit. Everything okay with you?">"I need to go to the bathroom." Lie, find Ken, find out what's going on.>Ignore it and it will go away. "Yeah, all good! Sorry. Still not really used to my new muscles.">Free Option.
>>4942522>"Could we go somewhere a little quieter? I think all the people are making me bug out a little bit.". We need to get her somewhere safe.
>>4942522>"Thought I smelled the fire again. Wanna check it out?"
>>4942782>>4942587You need to go. You need to get Rebecca somewhere else and out of here, now. "Could we go somewhere quieter? I thought I smelled the fire again and all the people -- it's just bugging me out a little bit."Rebecca looks up at you with a little smile and cranes her neck to kiss you on the nose. You grab her by the hand this time, and she lets out a little squeak. "Oh, okay!" while you lead her out through the crowd.The further away you get from the dance floor, the more your hair stands on end, as you begin to notice things that just drifted by you before. You notice a handful of FOODS officers, scattered around, mingling. One of them steals a mozzarella stick, and the sight of them going completely unnoticed strikes you with irresponsible quantities of dread. Why are they prepared for something to happen?Then, you notice a single man in priest robes, sitting at the top of the stairs, reading a bible. Your heart sinks. "Sorry, sorry, I'm just kind of freaking out a little." You say to a startled Rebecca."No need to worry about it, man, we all get like that. We can chill outside if you want." Rebecca says, as you push the doors out through the much-thinned line of students malingering outside. A couple of them, in blatant disregard for school rules, are smoking, leaning against the brick wall. They stare at you like you have a third head. "Are you sure you're alright?"How could you possibly tell Rebecca that there is a giant murder monster nobody else can notice here? Your entire body is covered in goosebumps. You look around in a panic, your vision feeling hazy, before you bump into something and stumble back.Something growls at you, and it's not your stomach. "Noah? You're scaring me..." Rebecca murmurs, squeezing your hand."Hello, sailor." the Jabberwock sneers, leaning towards you. How could you not have seen it? You glance every which way, before noticing claw-shaped pockmarks in the brick of the school's external walls. Your entire body is burning with fight-or-flight. A peal of fire leaks out of the creature that was Coach White's smiling lips, revealing row after row of needle-like fangs - like baleen on a whale, but so much worse, so much sharper. "You and I have some unfinished business to attend to.""S-sorry, I'll be fine, promise." You tell Rebecca, turning towards her, your entire body shaking like a leaf. You grab her hand with yours and squeeze it tight with both sets of fingers. "I don't know what's happening.""How cute. High school lovers." the Jabberwock hisses, reaching over to hook a single raptorial claw beneath your chin. "Should I kill her first, so you feel properly motivated? Or should I just make you disappear from her life forever? Decisions, decisions..."
>>4943743You don't look. You don't look. Your passing glance at the Jabberwock reveals a still-badly-injured Coach White, with one side of his body completely pallid, misshapen, scaleless and furless. The only intact parts are the left side of his body from the shoulder up, including that claw, currently resting on your skull. The rest is warped and distorted, presumably from losing territorial conflicts from other Dragons. One eye is missing, the other burns with hatred. "Please, Rebecca, just... Hold still for a moment, please. This is going to sound schizophrenic but we're both in danger."The Jabberwock cackles, rearing its neck back with a horrendous, hacking, rasping laugh. "Oh, yes, both in danger indeed. How quaint. You make me sick, Noah Lee. So noble. So brave. Getting your nose caught in so many things that are none of your FUCKING business! the Jabberwock roars, crawling over top of the two of you, grabbing a random student with his remaining clawed arm, and pressing the very tip of his nail right up against them with practiced precision. "How many of these little boys and girls could I eviscerate before your little bodyguards took notice? They're all inside, Noah. I've made sure of it. Could you stop me before I cut the population of this school by a third? A half? What if I crawled back home, while they're all here defending these shitty little children, and slit your mom's throat? Hua Lee... now that's a face I'd love to see in pain."Rebecca stands ramrod still. You see it in her eyes that she trusts you. "Okay." She says, gulping. "We're in danger. Like. Are you on drugs? Is there a sniper? What's going on, Noah?"In an instant, the Jabberwock is upon the two of you, winding his serpentine body around both of you. "Oh yes, tell her there's a sniper - better yet, tell her there's an invisible monster only you can see. That won't sound, what was the word? Schizophrenic? There's nobody you can turn to, Noah. I might not even kill you tonight. I think I might just ruin your life like you ruined MINE"The Jabberwock grabs a hold of your hair with its stubby, malformed arm, and Rebecca's eyes widen slightly as your head jerks around, unnaturally pushed and pulled by the Jabberwock's obtrusive arm. She looks at you, and nods her head so subtly you could swear for a moment she's not moving at all. "Go on. Tell her whatever you'd like. Tell her the exact situation, if you'd like. I won't hurt you until I feel good and ready. Make as much of a fool of yourself as you want, Noah Lee. It's just you and me out here."
>>4943744>"There's an invisible monster. I can see it. It's holding the both of us hostage.">"Remember Coach White? They're secretly an invisible cannibalistic monster in addition to being a horrendous pedophile, and he is currently deciding whether or not to kill us.">"Something's wrong. I promise I'll tell you later. Right now, I need you to run inside and call for Ken as loud as you can. You need to tell her to come outside. Remember this.">Remain silent.>What are you, some sort of pussy? You're an Alchemist. You have a thumb. Pinch yourself until you bleed and then do something biomedical to this draconic freak. (Biomedical Alchemy Free Phrase)>No, wait, you can do even better than that. You've seen Chief Grey in action. You're a hot blooded American hero. Light yourself on fire. (Flame Alchemy Free Phrase)>Free Phrase.>Free Option.
>>4943746I would really like to use some kind of sonic boom, but that's probably some high level air alchemy shit.>Sweat. Sweat's got salt in it. Salt's got sodium in it. Sodium burns real good.>"I'm probably sweating buckets right now, aren't I?">Wipe your forehead with your hand, then BURN
>>4943746Dammit, we walked right into that one.>No, wait, you can do even better than that. You've seen Chief Grey in action. You're a hot blooded American hero. Light yourself on fire. (Flame Alchemy Free Phrase)
>>4943746>>No, wait, you can do even better than that. You've seen Chief Grey in action. You're a hot blooded American hero. Light yourself on fire.
Pulled an all-nighter + concerta to get the last update now and try as I might Morpheus's sweet grip calls to me. Gigantic update tomorrow.
>>4943864>>4943752>>4943749You look Rebecca in the eye as you shuffle a couple of fingers away from her. Just enough that you can finagle your fingertips into a configuration that lets you pinch your own thumb one-handed, and you pinch as hard as you can, trying not to wince, a bead of sweat dripping down your face. You mouth a word to her, once, twice, while the Jabberwock cackles behind you, pressing his jaw against the back of your head. "Run".Rebecca's eyes widen, and then narrow. "What's the matter? Cat's got your tongue?" the Jabberwock croons. You emphasize your cheeks, and mouth it a second time."No, I'm fine. I mean, not really." You say, tilting your head behind you. You catch Rebecca looking at you in your periphery - if you're talking to something that's not there, you're doing a damn good job at it. The two of you are alone in a thin crowd, and you're the only person who knows you're being held hostage. "Just... feeling a little flushed. Can you give me a minute to catch my breath?"You scrape your pointer fingernail against your thumb, pulling the tag of skin you managed to separate down in a long, painful strip, letting out a little spray of blood into your palm. "Oh, sure, take all night if you--"You don't understand the principles behind making just about anything ignite. You know sort of that fire is a fuel, an ignition source, and oxygen. And you certainly smelled plenty of fire earlier. Your brain goes through all the rapid convolutions before you even know what's happening, as you spin around on your heel and drop your own knee out from under you, tripping yourself so that you can grab hold of the Jabberwock's neck.Come on, Noah. Connect some synapses. There has to be some conceptual grist here you can use. The Jabberwock lets out a little grunt, more of aggravation than surprise, and swipes at the empty air where you were a second ago. Rebecca runs. She runs as fast as she can.
>>4946262Dragons breathe fire, don't they? That's sort of their whole thing in mythology. The draconic association with fire is a strong one, and here you have a fresh Dragon breathing and living right in front of you. The sweat on your palms forms a thin layer of sodium, something you know from watching science videos on youtube where someone throws a chunk into a lake - it's highly explosive.Think, Noah, think!"Burn!"Against all odds, not only does your hand ignite, it bursts into a gout of bright yellow flame, consuming your entire arm in an instant and just as readily spreading to the Jabberwock's neck meat. You feel a loud BANG rip through you like a firecracker in your chest - or more accurately, in your wrist - throwing you from the Jabberwock's neck and several dozen meters away, skidding to a halt on the asphalt. The Jabberwock roars, loosing a huge arterial spray a solid two meters across the sidewalk as he grabs hold of the ground with his good arm and throws himself at you. You glance sidelong, and Rebecca, looking in unspoiled fear and awe, caught more than a good enough glance of your arm exploding into a sodium flare.So did everyone else who's turned their head towards the dark of the end of the sidewalk. The whole thing takes less than two seconds, and you wave the flame out of your hand before it can do much but burn off all your hair on one arm and scorch your palm wound shut.Whoops. You look up, fighting through the pain in your arm, and note with some degree of thankfulness for your desire to not have too many questions asked of you that you seem to be in a dark spot between streetlights (sidewalklights?), right where the side of the school rounds the corner into the front of the school.Your body kicks itself into autopilot.You run through everything that you know by instinct, every part and aspect of you that's been drilled into your brain hard enough that it's become muscle memory. You have your hands, you have your blood, and you have a fuckton of concrete."Come get me, pedophile!" You yell, ducking around the corner to avoid the incoming commotion, as teenagers naturally draw themselves to the sound of an explosion like fruit flies to a rotting banana. Gotta keep his attention off of them - you can defend yourself, they can't.For a second, your brain reels at how insane this all is. You aren't even a registered Dragon slayer, much less a One-star one. A little bit ago, all you had to worry about in your life was finishing school, getting a boring job that paid enough to live, and then dying in a bar somewhere. Now you have to worry about sickle-clawed monsters coming for your throat. Amateur Slayer Noah, track record, two, uh, wins(?), one loss, up against a very angry Three-star.Keep him off the other kids. They can't defend themselves.
>>4946265"DON'T CALL ME THAT!" He shrieks, swerving sideways into a sidewalklight and bashing it in half, where it immediately crumples to the ground. Nobody notices it falling, but you're sure once a couple of seconds have passed for reality to adjust, they'll assume that the explosion knocked it over.You scrape your palms against the rough surface of the sidewalk, biting your lower lip as you rip your burnt wound back open, and bring both of them back up to your shoes. "Sorry, gotta bounce!" You taunt, pulling both your feet up into the air and immediately backflipping over yourself, unprepared for the sudden surge of motion. You narrowly avoid a claw swipe with enough ferocity that the Jabberwock's claws embed themselves in the side of the school and just barely manage to land on his head, grabbing hold of his neck while he struggles to pull his claws free. Then, you kick off, and, as all physics books say, for every equal action there is an equal and opposite reaction.For a moment, you wonder how true that can be in a world where Alchemy exists. Then, your shoes kick the Jabberwock's head into the concrete, shooting his skull down like a bullet while you tuck into a very sloppy backwards somersault, gently bouncing on your heels. Just the lightest touch on the ground propels you back up at least an inch, so you keep it loose and limber, not even bothering to step - just repositioning your feet. "Come on, pedophile, you can do better than that!""I said... DON'T CALL ME THAT!" He roars, yanking his claw out of the wall and stumbling sideways a couple of steps. On the inhale, smoke pours out of his neck wound, but you're prepared, turning sideways and bouncing yourself away as gout of bright green fire pours out from his mouth, leaving burnt black-and-green stains across the space where you were a second ago.He bends down on his knees and surges forward like an eel cutting through the air, his entire body wildly whipping its way towards you in erratic circles, tail slapping against every surface it can whip against. "Hate to put up a wall between us!" You taunt, scraping your hands against the ground and then tugging upwards against the rough surface, pulling out a meter-high wall of concrete that he immediately smashes into. You let go of the ground, and it slides back in, the Jabberwock stumbling backwards a couple steps in stunned silence. His neck wound is already mostly healed, although its trailing, spasmodic spray-tracks are evidence enough of your previous wounding blow.
>>4946268You're sure you could give him a concussion easily enough, but the only thing that's actually seemed to do any sort of useful damage to him was that sodium flare, and you're not sure if your arms can physically handle doing too many of those - all the bones in your left arm ache from the force of the blast, and there's the aforementioned "ripped-back-open-cauterized-hand-wounds" you'd have to deal with continuously re-cauterizing. You're startling yourself with your amount of pain tolerance, but even you know there's a functional limit to how much you can handle, even when adrenalin-high.Still, maybe you can pull it off.Hundreds of people are counting on you to do it.>Get him somewhere with a roof or narrow walls, like the little plaza leading to the school's front doors. You can knock him around all you want, but you'll almost certainly need to pin him between heavy objects to crush him for any serious damage. (Architectural Alchemy Free Phrase)>There's plenty of raw material here, and you've got plenty of blood. Nobody's using these streetlights right now, so get creative with all that spare metal and wires. You don't have anything else you could really skewer him with now easily. (Forge Alchemy Free Phrase)>Wait, what was that thing that your shoes did? You might not be able to land any killing blows, and letting him hit you so you can get venom in you and operate with impunity would probably be a lethal mistake, but his slender body doesn't look like it has a good center of gravity - you can probably kick him around some more while you maneuver back inside. (Mobility Alchemy Free Phrase)>There's nobody here watching you in the dark. You're free to turn to bad ideas here, there's not an authority to stop you. He can regenerate, right? How well can he regenerate from turning his neck wound into a cancerous growth? That's just perpetual regeneration, isn't it? (Biomedical Alchemy Free Phrase)>Get creative. (Free Phrase)>Free Option.
>>4946272Can we find any glass? I want to reflect his flames right back at him.>Get your back to a window, and form a mini fort of metal or concrete spears, bait him into breathing fire>Use the glass to form a mirror that can REFLECT the flames back into whatever organ is fueling the process.
>>4946272>Get him somewhere with a roof or narrow walls, like the little plaza leading to the school's front doors. You can knock him around all you want, but you'll almost certainly need to pin him between heavy objects to crush him for any serious damage.>Try to make a large alchemy signature so that the FOODS people inside feel it.
>>4946272>How about we pin this lad with some wires and pierce his skull with some glowing-hot PIKES?
Sorry, personal crisis day apparently. Big update tomorrow instead.
>>4946272Just caught up with everything starting from thread 1 this morning. Have to say, extremely fucking cool. Excited to see more!>There's plenty of raw material here, and you've got plenty of blood. Nobody's using these streetlights right now, so get creative with all that spare metal and wires. >Wires are conductive, aren't they? How about you deliver some SHOCK and awe?>TIE him up first.
>>4947751Thank you, glad to hear you're enjoying it :)
>>4946272>>There's plenty of raw material here, and you've got plenty of blood. Nobody's using these streetlights right now, so get creative with all that spare metal and wires. You don't have anything else you could really skewer him with now easily. (Forge Alchemy Free Phrase)If we know how electricity works, we could go for a skewer and get the electricity to ARC. Like a taser, but way uglier.
Gigantic apologies for the delay - been dealing with like fifteen different personal things happening all at once.
As long as it isn't dead, I can wait. Just tell us if you ever do drop it so I don't need to check every day, please!
>>4949801Do what you gotta do. I'm patient.
>>4949774>>4947751Going to write the update with these tomorrow just to lock it in, assuming that I don't get Yet Another thing on my plate at the time. Thank you for your patience, readers, I greatly appreciate it.
>>4950913>>4947751>>4949774There's no room to lead him to FOODS, and pulling him inside will just drag him into the crowd where he can lash out. You can call him a pedophile all you want, but it's doubtful the same tactic will keep distracting him forever. You bounce on your heels like you're on the moon and bite the tip of your thumb until it bleeds just for the extra fuel. You wince through the pain, somewhat impressed, somewhat scared at your own ability to bite through your own skin without hesitation. Normally don't people have blockers in their head that make it hard to do that?Apropos of nothing, you recall the factoid that "it takes about as much force to bite through a baby carrot as it does to bite through the joints of your fingers". You don't know why you think of that, nor do you know if it's true. You click your teeth together and bounce backwards, towards one of the light posts, and brace yourself against it."You little shit... I'm going to make you wish you've never been born!" The Jabberwock roars, rearing its head back and shooting out a loose, flowy gout of greenish-blue flame, sweeping it from left to right. Grabbing the pole, you kick off the ground and grind your teeth together in pain as your blood lubricates the cold metal enough to let you swing around and propel yourself behind the Jabberwock, tucking into a roll and then kicking yourself off the ground again to grab the next pole in line. The feeling of rough, not-quite-sanded-clean metal bites into your scratched up hands, sending shocking bolts of pain up your arms. You take a mental note to yourself to ask Dr. Hyde for a tetanus shot after this, assuming you survive.The Jabberwock sucks in breath through his needle-like teeth as his fire runs out. "Stop moving!" He shrieks, little wisps of teal-yellow smoke filtering out through his four nostrils. Small, barely noticeable gills flare out for a split second on the sides of his cheeks while you try to muster enough concentration to get anything productive done. You watch him inhale, and you're already gone when he tries to melt the light pole with his fire, the damp grass singed and smoking from the heat as you let your shoulder fall forward into the grass on the other side of the sidewalk, closer to the curb. He screams and gnashes his teeth together, scraping his single good claw against the ground, drawing bright sparks.
>>4951582All the fire in the air makes a line of sweat start to form on your forehead while you picture a hot forge, metal being pounded into shape. Making new metal from nothing would be hard, calorie intensive. You shake out your hands instead - metal gets weaker as it heats up. Metal gets weaker as it heats up. Metal gets weaker as it heats up. "WEAKEN AND BEND!" You shout, slapping your hand over the pole while the Jabberwock rears up. Immediately, in response to your wishes, the pole bows down like a joint on a doll, immediately pulled down by gravity and slamming down onto the ground with a loud CLANG, the metal at the crease bowing inward until it breaks entirely, pulled too thin, revealing an array of wires. The Jabberwock doesn't even seem fazed, just using his sinuous body to duck around."You missed." He snarls, taking two steps back and breathing in nice and deep.You grab the wires, pressing your jaw shut tight. All the wires are in the ground along the same circuit, right? Well, you'll find out. "ARC!"Every pole you touched, smeared with your blood, even a little bit, immediately bursts into a loud, crawling scream of electricity. The grass around them flash-pops as the air ionizes, and then the tip of the fallen light pole, where you focus the most of your thoughts, your killing intent, bursts into a bolt of electricity.The power in the school flickers, and then goes out. You shut your eyes, your fingers clenching up tight of their own accord around the bundle of wires. The Jabberwock screams as the light poles all spark and burst, feeding their power into him in the form of a luminous bolt of seared air so hot and bright that you can't look directly at it. Your fingers burn. You feel lightning crawling through your veins, taste metal in your tongue, while the Jabberwock screams and wails, spasming and thrashing until he manages to slam his head into you, knocking you several meters away onto the street.The arc of electricity ends as soon as your fingers are ripped away from the wires. Your entire body clenches, spasms, and twists, and the lights inside all flicker back on. All in all, it's maybe three seconds, but it's three seconds of pure electricity. You stumble to your feet, wiping dust the best you can from your suit with shaky fingers, the tatters of your sleeve that weren't burnt from the sodium flare now ripped off from contact with the asphalt. You'll figure out a way to explain that to your mom later.
>>4951584The Jabberwock stumbles around, muscles twitching, groaning in pain. One of his eyes has completely burst, leaving only a blackened looking scorch mark around his eye socket. A thin, narrow nostril, and some of his gill slits, seem to have sealed up completely. Dark, thick tick-marks, looking like fractal symbols, are etched into his skin, and several of his scales have popped clean off, revealing raw skin beneath. You glance at your own hand, matching scarring already forming on your burnt hand, and shake it off. He's not bleeding, but by the way he's stumbling and twitching, you doubt he's in much of a better place than you are. He pants, little curls of fire leaking out from between his teeth."You little shit... Fucker... I'll kill you... I'll kill you! I'll kill you..." He repeats weakly. There's a ginormous scorch mark across his chest, looking like it's burnt a hole into him, and you can see what looks like some kind of horrifically mutated heart gently pulsing, thumping along. Your own heart sings in response.>If anything will get Ken's attention, it'll be that. You've done what you can, and anything more will probably injure you badly. Just play defensively and do what you can until the cavalry arrives.>You can see his heart, you have all the material you need. Waiting will let him recover. You just have to endure more pain than he does - go for the kill. (Free Phrase.)>Free Option.
>>4951587>You can see his heart, you have all the material you need. Waiting will let him recover. You just have to endure more pain than he does - go for the kill. (Free Phrase.)We could probably shape some piece of scrap metal into a SPEAR to stab him, but considering how op his regeneration is, we should EXPAND the tip into more spikes once it's in just to make sure.It would be really cool to kill a three star dragon and say "yeah I did it all myself" also it seems like an easy kill right now.
>>4951632I'm starting to suspect that most people don't have enough pneuma to do multiple spell-tier alchemy.>>4951587>SPEAR in one hand, SHIELD in the other.>Make an attempt to stab, but fake him out and dash straight inside his reach and hug the shield to the heart before doing >>4951632
>>4951587Totally worth the wait. Listening to Berserk's "My Brother the Dragonslayer" makes it even better. The OST was the only good thing to come out of that travesty.>You can see his heart, you have all the material you need. Waiting will let him recover. You just have to endure more pain than he does - go for the kill. >Hearts. They beat. They can get overtaxed. They can... rupture. You're no medic, but you know enough to remember that electricity doesn't do anything good for a heart. Get in there and get your hands dirty.Time to give him a heart attack! Extra points if it explodes. Frying his skin must've messed with his regeneration a little. https://www.verywellhealth.com/cardiac-electrical-system-how-the-heart-beats-1746299
Recommended Listening: https://youtu.be/-FmjhnX3y0MThird post is the formatting charm...>>4951632>>4951718>>4952035 "I won't let a little brat like you... get in the way of my perfect life!" The Jabberwock screams, his throat vibrating, hissing with air, loud enough to shatter two windows and make your ears sting with slight pain while you cut the edges of your arms open on sharp, broken metal and pour everything you have left into this. Shape and mold, heated by the forge. Your blood hums with fire, and your brain feels like it's twitching, pulsing, throbbing inside of your head. Your body feels like it's too big to fit inside of you. Your nails dig into the rough metal. "I need a spear." You speak to the metal in your hands. You grab and pull at it like taffy, while the Jabberwock's chest begins to glow. "Give me a spear, smithy!" The Jabberwock charges, head down, feet thumping against the ground, peals of green fire leaking out of the holes you've scorched in his body like arcs of electricity, flicking into the air, forming little will-o-wisps around him. You yank a spear out of the light pole, ripping it free from the metal, soaked in your blood. The second you let go of it, you can feel that it's going to swell back up into a light pole - just what you're hoping on. It's heavy, brutish in your hand, a weapon designed to kill. "How are you still standing? Just -- DIE ALREADYYY!" His anger is too strong for his own good. You brace yourself, feeling your vision fading at the edge of your eyes, body almost empty of fuel, and you angle the spear upwards. Then, with what you have left, you charge suicidally towards the Three-star Dragon, the momentum from your enchanted shoes carrying you forward despite the incredibly heavy weight of your scrap spear - you didn't have enough in you to make it any lighter. You feel the Jabberwock's claw pierce into you as you cram the tip of your spear into his gut, penetrating straight through his heart and out his back. You press yourself into his body and twist, falling forward into yourself, his claw coming out of you, ripping a neat, tidy gash into your side. Blood sprays across the ground, and the Jabberwock lets out a gurgling cry as the spear reforms into a light pole inside of his chest. You grab your wound, grab the other end of the light pole, and use the last bit of light in your consciousness. Manufactory hammering metal into place. A barrier, a barricade. Your brain lights up with violence. You can make walls inside of things. You externalize your needs to the world. "Forge me a wrought-iron fence!" You gasp out, pulling the light pole with the last strength in your muscles as it rapidly grows into a pointed, spiked fence inside of the Jabberwock.
>>4954675You wake up to the stinging pain of a hand across your face, slapping you to consciousness. "Jesus fucking Christ, kid, you really do have some kind of death wish, don't you?" Ken lambastes you, her eyes red and puffy, her nose sounding a little bit clogged. "Fuck me running...""Did I win?" You ask, throat hoarse. You look down at your arms and hands, the two of them thoroughly bandaged, and glance down at the warm burning in your gut, similarly bandaged. There's blood scattered about everywhere, and a light pole completely shorn from its spot in the ground, but you don't see the Jabberwock anywhere.Ken wipes her face with the back of her arm. "Did you -- did you kill a Three-star Dragon by yourself and almost die in the process? Yes. Would that qualify as winning? I guess by some metric." She chides you, very clearly resisting the urge to slap you again, her face scrunched up into worried frustration."He only hit me once, I was fine." You wave off, slightly delirious. The ground underneath you is grass. The area around you is cordoned off with caution tape, FOODS Agents keeping watch."No, Noah, listen to me, you nearly died. Whatever sort of curse he tried to put in you, it was causing you to ignite from the inside out. Count yourself lucky your girlfriend came and found me, maybe a minute longer and you would've been a charred husk, even if you had killed a Three-star." Ken explains, pushing her finger against your torso. Your head's swimming a little bit. You think you're having trouble really acclimating to how close you got to dying here. It doesn't seem real."Rebecca? Where is she?" You ask, trying to sit up. Immediately, once you do, a shooting pain runs through your core, and Ken pushes you back down."Don't worry about her, lover-boy. She's inside, one of our plainclothes officers taking care of her. Everyone else went home after your first stupid attack, we convinced them there was a gas line failure that caused an explosion. Thankfully, after some questioning, we've determined nobody else managed to see you except for your girlfriend, so that... decreases the amount of cover-work we have to do." She says, and then sighs, and then visibly slumps, and then pulls you into a slightly painfully tight hug. "God, Noah, you're a fucking idiot.""I'm a fucking idiot that just killed a Three-star Dragon by myself." You correct her, feeling a little smug, letting her hug you. She lets go, and you flop back onto the grass."You're a fucking idiot that killed a very weak Three-star Dragon with a grudge, anger issues, and not fully regenerated from being ripped in half, but yes, you are a fucking idiot that killed a Three-star Dragon." She corrects you back. You're not mad at her - you can tell she's not actually angry out of spite or malice, just frustrated with the lengths you were willing to go.
>>4954702>"How come you couldn't track him? Didn't you guys let him get away because you put a tracker in him or something?">"Does that mean I'm a Three-star Slayer now?">"Is it... not normal to be able to do that much Alchemy?">"So, how much do I get paid?">"Can I go home, or do I need to go get debriefed or something like that?">Free Option.>Pass Out.
>>4954704>"Is it... not normal to be able to do that much Alchemy?">"Rebecca. She's probably got family who've been dragoned. Try not to wipe too many memories.">Pass out
>>4954704>"Is it... not normal to be able to do that much Alchemy?">"Rebecca. She's probably got family who've been dragoned. Try not to wipe too many memories."
>>4954675>It's heavy, brutish in your hand, a weapon designed to kill.It was too big to be called a ~~sword~~ spear. Massive, thick, heavy, and far too rough. Indeed, it was a heap of raw iron.>"Rebecca. She's probably got family who've been dragoned. Try not to wipe too many memories.">"So, how much do I get paid?"Figure we don't need to ask the Alchemy question since if I recall correctly our Pneuma storage was rated at Excellent at the beginning of the timeskip.Also, on a scale of 1-10, that was *metal*.
>>4954735Glad you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.
>>4954702Supporting >>4954729, plus>Got anything to eat?
>>4954675>"How come you couldn't track him? Didn't you guys let him get away because you put a tracker in him or something?"
>>4954735>>4954729>>4954718"Is it... not normal to be able to do that much Alchemy...?" You ask, waving your hand about lazily in the air as Ken looks at you."How much did you do? I could feel it in the air, but..." She asks, looking at her hand. You look at your own and start counting off fingers."Well. I blew up my arm. Then I made my shoes bouncy. And I made concrete walls. I made that streetlight fall, and then I think I dumped the entire school's electricity supply into him. And then I turned the metal into a spear. And then a fence." You list off, having moved to your other hand with your counting. You smile a little dizzily at Ken.She stares at you with wide, unblinking eyes. "No. That's not normal."You laugh a little bit. "Oh, right, before I pass out - Rebecca, she's got family that got Dragoned, I think. Don't wipe too many memories, please?" You ask, looking up at Ken. Now, its her turn to laugh."What do we look like, the men in black?" Ken replied, thumping you on the back.You pass out.---When you wake up, it's on your couch, Rebecca sitting on the floor, worriedly looking at her phone. Even more worried-looking is your mom, who looks absolutely run ragged. When you stir slightly and make a little noise, she immediately snaps to attention on you, her face unable decide whether it wants to be grateful or angry or worried. "Oh my god, Noah, are-- are you okay?"You give her a weak little thumbs up. Now that all the adrenaline is gone from your body, you feel everything you put yourself through - your hands burn with pain and your left arm feels like it's been ran over, not to mention the dull, prickling ache in your chest and, oh yeah, the huge gash in your side, that also hurts. Combine that with complete pneuma exhaustion, and you're just out of it all, running on empty. So, you sustain the thumbs up. "What happened?" You ask, and Rebecca glances at you, makes a face, and looks back at her phone."You're asking me! I'm just-- I'm just doing my thing and next thing I know I get a call from your school and there's been an explosion and-- my god, Noah, you could've died!" Your mom chokes out, throwing her arms around you and squeezing you until you let out a little puff of noise."But I didn't." You assure her, feebly thumping her on the back. "Please hug me less hard.""But you didn't." She repeats, sighing, nearly collapsing onto the coffee table. She wipes the back of her hand across her brow. "God, and we're gonna have to pay back the suit rental..."Rebecca gives you a little smile and a thumbs up when your mom isn't looking at her.>Feign ignorance, ask Rebecca what happened.>Assure your mom that you'll figure something out to for the suit.>Ask how you got home.>Tell your mom about Dragons and that it wasn't an explosion, actually. The Jabberwock knew who she and Rebecca were - you can't do secret identity shit while your loved ones are defenseless.>No, don't do that.>Free Option.
>>4957799>Feign ignorance, ask Rebecca what happened.
>>4957799>Feign ignorance, ask Rebecca what happened.>Ask how you got home.
Before I forget: there's the possibility that FOODS weren't the ones who did the memory wipe on the siblings, and there's also the possibility that Ken doesn't know or may also be mindwiped for classified secrets.
>>4957799>Feign ignorance, ask Rebecca what happened.>Assure your mom that you'll figure something out to for the suit.I'm sure whatever bonus we get for landing the killing blow on the Jabberwock can cover the cost.
>>4957908>>4957808>>4957803"Did you see anything that happened?" You ask Rebecca, wiggling a little bit on the couch. Your mom gets up and shuffles over to the kitchen to get you a glass of ice water, while Rebecca glances at your mom and then back at you. When she speaks, it feels a little forced - a little louder, like she's trying to tell your mom, and not you. "It was just... The lights went out and then one of the streetlights blew up and hit you. And I guess that knocked you out.""Or I passed out from blood loss." You reply. She rubs her chin."Yeah. Probably." She says, while your mom comes back with two plastic cups full of ice water and another plastic cup full of those little packets of Crystal Light. You rummage through for the powdered iced tea and dump the entire thing into your cup, mixing it around with your finger and taking a refreshing, if somewhat difficult, swig, crushing a little powder bubble between your molars and letting your saliva saturate it into a thick, tea-flavored sludge.Rebecca just drinks the plain ice water. "Are you going to need a ride home, Rebecca, honey? I can drive you if you need it." Your mom asks. "Or, um, you could use my bedroom if not, since it's late. And I'm not sure if I'm... decent for driving."Rebecca and your mom both laugh a little nervously at each other. Your mom tosses her head backwards a little towards a can of beer she was enjoying. "I'd call that Ken girl back over but she seemed in a hurry... didn't want to bother her." Your mom says."Is that how I got home?" You ask, thinking about you being passed out on a motorcycle and how dangerous that sounds."Yeah, Ken gave both of us a ride. Oh! Right. She told me to tell you that "Hide?" wants to talk to you when you have the time?" Rebecca answers."Hyde, yeah, he sure would." You mumble, taking another sip."Where did you make such interesting friends, Noah?" Your mom asks playfully, reaching out to ruffle your hair with her hand. Her own hand is cold and shaky - she's clearly having some sort of physical reaction from her anxiety. You can't say you blame her.>"Internet.">"Nightly walks.">"We play Dungeons and Dragons at the local library.">"We go out late at night and hunt down evil monsters." [Sarcastic]>"We go out late at night and hunt down evil monsters." [Sincere]>Free Option.
>>4959991>(Lie)"He's the paperwork guy at the community service place. He'll probably help me get a doctor's note or something to vouch for....this."
>>4959991>"We go out late at night and hunt down evil monsters." [Sarcastic]Feel a bit bad for lying to her all the time. This isn't much better, but oh well.
>>4959991>>4959997Yeah, this works. Not entirely a lie, either.
>>4959997"He's the paperwork guy at the community service place. He'll probably help me get a doctor's note or something, to vouch for, uh... this." You mumble out in reply. It's not technically wrong, but it is pretty untruthful - not that lying itself is an immediate moral wrong, it's just one more strand in your web. You don't want to get them caught up in your business, after all.Your mom seems to accept this. "Oh, right, the community center people. I'm glad you're making friends, at least!" She says, sighing. "Let's figure out this, uh, sleeping situation. Do you think you can make it up the stairs?"Rebecca looks at you a little funny from what you said, but doesn't comment on it. You try swinging your legs over the edge of the couch, and immediately feel a bolt of lightning go through your back. "No, hrgh, no, I don't think so."Your mom nods. "I'll uh, I'll take my bedroom then and I guess if you don't mind Rebecca in your bed?""Fine by me." Rebecca says, while your mom scrunches up her brow."Yeah, that's fine." You answer. Your mom gives you a kiss on the forehead and stands up, bending backwards to crack her back."Great. I'm going to, um, go to bed now, if that's alright with you, kiddo? I've already called off on work tomorrow but my sleep schedule means that my brain is telling me that it's sleep time." Your mom says, immediately overexplaining to herself to justify something that you're going to say yes to anyway."Yeah, yeah, go get some rest." You tell your mom, and she bends down to kiss you on the forehead again and then disappears into her bedroom. You take a sip of iced tea and chew on an ice cube.The door to her bedroom shuts. Rebecca glances at you.>"So, uh, good night?">"What do you remember?">"...Sorry. I don't want to get her more mixed up in this than I have to.">Free Option.
>>4961299>"Look, I still don't know if they would pull an MIB on you. Or mom. What do you remember?"
>>4961299>"What do you remember?"
>>4961299Do you remember? The 21st night of September!
>>4961299Hold on, wasn't the forbidden alchemy book under our bed? Wouldn't Rebecca notice it?
>>4961453I mean, I don't expect her to look at the ravaged MC and think "Man, the first thing I need to do is flip to a random page and try whatever he was doing without supervision"I think there's a couple steps she'd need to do to even do alchemy, which would take a day or two of reading even assuming we had the available drugs.
Apologies for the delay, just not up to it tonight. Will try to get one out tomorrow afternoon, just letting you all know I'm still alive.
>>4963829It's all good dude.
>>4961308>>4961353>>4961400>"Look, I still don't know if they would pull a Men-in-Black on you. Or mom. What do you remember?" You ask, mumbling something about the 21st night of September under your breath to try and lighten the mood. It doesn't really work."I remember holding you outside for a bit while you acted like a schizophrenic, and then you told me to run, and then you exploded." She answers, and you wince. You were kind of hoping she wouldn't remember the part where you exploded. "They told me there was some sort of short that made one of the light... pole things explode, and I felt like this is some shit that's way beyond me so I just didn't tell them that I saw you explode."Then, as you're thinking of a response, she jerks her head towards you. "Wait, you said remember. Did you, like, expect me to not remember anything?""Kind of, maybe? It was a little bit of a crapshoot." You reply, mostly on impulse, and she sighs, running her hand through her hair."Look, I'm not an idiot. People don't randomly explode and you're not nearly fat enough for spontaneous human combustion to happen to you--" You aren't sure if that's a compliment or not, but whatever, Rebecca, ", and I just, I've read Spiderman, you know. And I guess I'm your Mary Jane or your Gwen Stacy and your mom's the Aunt May and today I just got talked to by SHIELD agents? Is that what's going on?">"I'm going to be honest, I have no idea what you're talking about.", and then tell her that it sounds about right once she explains.>"Yeah, no, that's... that's about exactly it, yeah.">"It's more like fucked up Harry Potter but I guess it's comparable, yeah...">Try to bullshit something (Doomed to failure)>"I'm less Spiderman and more Jessica Jones, I think, but yeah probably.">Immediately babble to her everything just to get it off your chest. What else do you have to lose?>Ask her what more clarification *she* wants.>Free Option.
>>4965857>"It's more like fucked up Harry Potter but I guess it's comparable, yeah..."
>>4965857>"It's more like fucked up Harry Potter but I guess it's comparable, yeah...">"Fair warning, your life will get noticeably worse if you find out more."
>>4965857>"I'm going to be honest, I have no idea what you're talking about.", and then tell her that it sounds about right once she explains.I recognize the name Spiderman, but everything else is Greek to me.
>>4965906>>4965868>>4966028"I'd say it's more like a fucked up Harry Potter situation, but, yeah, that's... comparable. I guess." You say, and she nods, and frowns. "Fair warning, your life will get noticeably worse if you find out more.""Buddy, my life already kind of sucks balls. At the bare minimum it could suck balls excitingly. Hit me." She replies, shuffling onto the couch with you, squeezing next to your head and letting her hand rest on your shoulder. She gives it a little pat and you wince, so she settles for just gently resting her hand on your other shoulder, which hurts less."So, basically, there are giant monsters named Dragons that burst out of people for reasons that science doesn't know. Except you never notice them because Dragons have some sort of magic whatzit field that makes them impossible to perceive. They're also--" You're about to say "All evil", and then you think about Saint, and make a little face. "Usually evil and want to eat people.""Brutal." She replies, brushing your hair out of your face. "Was I being held hostage by a Dragon, is that what was going on?""Quick study, yeah. Oh, and if a Dragon eats you, you get wiped from everyone else's memories. Also, Dragons are venomous and their venom makes you disappear from everyone else's perception, so if a Dragon bites or claws you and you can't defend yourself you're probably fucked because nobody can rescue you." You continue to ramble, feeling an increasing quantity of weight lifting off of your chest as you do so."Uh huh. And the explosion?" She asks."If you get attacked by a Dragon and survive, you can do magic. I made the sweat on my arm turn into a sodium flare." You answer. She rubs her chin thoughtfully, and then bends over to kiss you on the forehead."That sounds like bullshit, and ordinarily I would accuse you of being on so many drugs, but you absolutely exploded in front of me, so. Did that feel good to get off your chest?">"Exceptionally.">"I mean, yes, but now I'm worried about *you*. Like, Gwen Stacy died, right?">"Not particularly.">"You... believe me?">Free Option.and...>Try to explain the whole FOODS/Pandora/l'Ordine situation>Explain to her what was up with Ken and the 'men in black'.>Okay, she's convinced, that's enough. Let's not pull her in any further than we have to.>Free Option.
>>4968539>"Yes, but now I have to tell you the part that has nothing to do with me and everything to do with you."Well if she already knows her situation is shit.....>Try to explain the book mailing people>Explain to her what was up with Ken and the 'men in black'.
>>4968539>"You... believe me?">Explain to her what was up with Ken and the 'men in black'.
>>4968539>"Exceptionally.">Try to explain the book mailing people>Explain to her what was up with Ken and the 'men in black'Sweet girl.
>>4968767>>4968579>>4968669"Exceptionally so. I'm... surprised someone believes me without seeing it, to be honest, but I really don't feel like sticking you in front of a Dragon to find out." You say.She laughs sweetly. "I appreciate that, I think. I don't feel like it very much either, even if I got magic powers out of the equation."You grunt quietly as you shift around into a slightly more comfortable position on the couch. "Now, uh, the part that has less to do with me. So, there's this group called the Fraternal Order Of Dragon Slayers, and they--"Rebecca does some quick counting on her fingers and laughs, interrupting you. "The secret government organization is called FOODS? Really? What happened to DRINKS?"You both share a laugh at the Dragon police's expense before you continue on. "So, Ken is the person who saved me from the Dragon that I almost got killed by, so I sort of do... work for FOODS? But I don't work there yet. I just do stuff for them. Anyway, so, there's some weird stuff going around. Some person going and giving random people, like, pills that let them temporarily do magic, and books on how to do illegal magic, and some stuff happened at the school--"Rebecca, cautiously excited, interrupts you again. "Like the bomb that went off in the gym lockers?"You nod. "Yeah, that was a thing I was involved in. It's... a whole mess, we're trying to track them down, and in the process, turns out one of the gym teachers is a Dragon. Not sure if you'll be able to remember him anymore, because he kind of died while in the big monster form, but he was holding us hostage, and then I ended up having to kill him in self defense."Rebecca raises an eyebrow. "I'd say you should probably go turn yourself in but he was, presumably, a cannibalistic student-eating monster?""And a pedophile." You say, nodding. She nods back, sagely, taking this all in a surprising amount of stride."I'll take your word for it. Good riddance." She says, and you nod with her. "You did the world good, I think.""I like to hope so." You reply. The room goes quiet for a bit. Your arm hurts.>"So, uh... good night, I guess?">Free Option.
>>4969632>"So uh, try not to do any magic while I'm asleep. Best case scenario is keeling over from hunger. Best."
>>4969632>"Can we just sit like this for a bit?"
>>4969746>>4969684"So, uh. Try not to do any magic while I'm asleep. Best case scenario is you keel over from hunger." You say, apropos of very little, and Rebecca chuckles quietly to herself, brushing your hair out of your face. Almost entirely on instinct, you press your forehead into her fingers, and she smiles and brushes your hair a little further."I'll try not to." She replies, continuing to brush your hair. You sigh quietly to yourself and shut your eyes."Can we just sit like this for a bit?" You ask."Sure." She replies, and you fall asleep.---It's immense. A gigantic tower, looming over the horizon, in a vast, empty desert.You know immediately that you're dreaming. You can tell because you can feel Rebecca's hands on your face, through your hair, although you don't know if that's you remembering the sensation of it, or if she's doing that in real life and you're just perceiving it in your dreamworld.You can hear quiet music, faint, just on the edge of hearing, drifting from the tower. It stretches far, far into the sky.>Approach the tower.>Turn away and wander into the desert.>Make the dream worse.
>>4970845>Approach the tower.
>>4970866>>4970869>>4971894You limp along through the sand towards the tower, noticing with a mild degree of alarm that your left arm is just straight up missing, with only a dull, throbbing ache where it was. You flex your fingers there, you think in real life, and realize that Rebecca's hands are no longer in your hair. The passage of time is hilariously distorted, and despite your active awareness that you are dreaming, you still find yourself drifting in and out of the reality of the dream. For a moment, you are aware that you are a high schooler sleeping on a couch, and then you are not, and so it goes.The tower looms in front of you, sheer concrete as far as the eye can see. It ascends far into the clouds, and, past that, you can see it continue to grow (or perhaps it was always grown) high into the sky, past the stars and into the bright red infinity above you. There's no apparent entrance to the tower, despite the unmistakable sound of ballroom jazz emanating from what is undoubtedly hollow insides.You are fairly sure, in that way that people can be sure of things that are utterly counterfactual, farcical, even, in a dream, that there is perhaps only half an inch of smooth concrete-stone between you and the interior of the tower. That being said, you are also distinctly aware of a series of grooves carved into the side of the tower, almost like runes, but almost all straight or at some sort of notched diagonal angle. When you fit your fingers in, it's a perfect fit to pull and haul, the grooves continuing to curl inwards to give you perhaps the best handhold you could imagine that's not literally a handle. The etchings continue all the way up the side of the tower until they dissolve into incomprehensible texture, their dark color melding with the light grey of the tower's exterior. It's perfectly smooth, like it was constructed, extruded, maybe, in one solid chunk - absolutely not made piece by piece. It's also not quite like any concrete you've felt, with the typical rough exterior sanded down into some sort of thin, fragile feeling material more akin to your mom's pumice stones. Only the interior of the grooves retains that typical bumpy, rough surface you readily associate with concrete in the waking world.>Ascend the tower.>Search for an entrance.>Make your own way inside.>Knock the tower over.
>>4972000>Break off a piece to keep in your pocket>Make your own way inside.How do you climb with one arm?
>>4972000>Search for an entrance.
>>4972000>Break off a piece to keep in your pocket>See if you can use Alchemy to make an entrance. If you're in a dream, why not take advantage of it?
My apologies for the delay, been a... long, rough week.>>4973006>>4972027You think that climbing up such a construct with one arm is a bit of a silly proposition, but make a mental note to consider the idea a little more strongly if you're ever here again and have both of your arms. Instead of climbing, you bite your thumb, bringing a dull, bell-like ringing pain into your finger completely distinct from the sharp pain of blood that you're used to.When you wipe your thumb on the outside of the tower, it reveals a black smudge. Wincing, you try alchemy all the same, saying something that you're not really aware of. Whatever's inside your thumb seems to work just fine for... dream-pneuma, causing the wall to begin to flake and crumble into thick, jagged shards - you grab one and put it into your pocket, just in case you can somehow bring it back with you.You give the wall a little push, and it heaves inward, revealing blackness. You step inside, and it falls back up behind you, sealing the way and leaving you in the dark. Slowly, light filters in from above like the filtering of sunlight through the top of the ocean, painting little tiger stripes against what is clearly a laminate wooden floor, displaying the source of the music clearly as it dances over their face.It's you. Both-armed, dressed nice and fancy, conducting a quiet orchestra - or maybe it's a ballroom band? They seem to shift and morph whenever you aren't looking directly at them, changing instruments, changing numbers. They are at once a small, intimate collection and a huge orchestra filling up several floors.You look up. It's almost like a cylindrical opera house, with concentric, sloped disks filled with empty seats as far up as you can see and then some. There is, presumably, either the sun or some other light source at the very top of the tower, but it does literally go so high up that you cannot see far enough - it closes up around the top visually.The double-you doesn't seem to notice your presence, or if he does, he's ignoring you.>Call out to him.>Try to bring the tower down.>Look for stairs.>Look for Rebecca.>Look for your Father.>Look for "Grandpa".>Look for Alchemy.>Look for yourself.>Free Option.
>>4975934>Try to go into the orchestra and pick up your own instrument
>>4975934>Look for stairs.
>>4975934No worries, just glad you're back.>Look for stairs.I wouldn't mind sitting down for a show, but the ladders on the outside make me think there might be something at the top.
>>4976292>>4975948You decide that, with a tower in your dreams, there must be something at the top of it that makes it so appealing to ascend. You look around for stairs, and eventually find them, recessed into the wall. It occurs to you, almost immediately, that there should be no room for the stairs, but you have the feeling if you linger on that for too long then "sensicality" will start to re-assert itself with potentially disastrous consequences.You continue up the stairs nonetheless, holding onto the railing. You ascend, hit a landing, and ascend further, as the orchestra grows more and more distorted with volume and echo. Time seems to feel different - you know this is true, since this is a dream, but it's hard to overstate how odd it feels to ascend what you know is fifty three floors in simultaneously seconds and several days.You peer back down. You can barely see the shifting orchestra from up here, and you look up, and if anything, the top of the tower seems even further away. The jazz blends into static noise, like a fading, burning memory, roaring into bouncing fuzz that surrounds you more like a blanket of noise than any audible music.The lights here are dim and flickering. You catch sight, in between flickers, of occasional visitors sitting in the chairs. You can parse them for only a moment before they disappear.>Sit down and watch.>Continue ascending. You can make it to the top.>Look for someonefamiliar.>Free Option.
>>4978201>Sit down and watch.
>>4978201>Continue ascending. You can make it to the top.
Apologies again for the delay, this time I have a good reason - I got hit by a fucking hurricane! Final updates for this session soon, thank you for bearing with my slowness.
>>4981190Be safe man,
>>4981190>hurricaneEAST COAST BROTHER
Alright, I have power again! Update incoming, new thread soon.
>>4978403>>4978209You decide that reaching the roof right now, the top of the spire, if it exists, is probably a bit of a fool's errand. Maybe you could make it before you wake up - time is fake in a dream, after all - or maybe you couldn't. Either way, you decide a more productive use of your time in this strange realm is to sit down and watch.When you start paying attention, the orchestra takes more shape, as the rest of the world around you loses coherence. You're not surprised by this, since that's just how dreams work. There are people to the left and right of you, indistinct faces that seem eerily familiar in the way that people in dreams tend to be. People you could've sworn you've known for ages, even though the half-asleep logical processing part of your brain tells you that these people are fictions invented by your own mind processing the day's memories. Or something like that.One of them reaches over and gently pats you on the back of your hand.The conductor - you - turns up to look at you, from all the way down there, and flashes a discomforting smile.The orchestra begins to warm up, pulling string against string, tuning instruments, creating a deafening raucous sound that makes your ears ache. Then, the pain spreads to your back, up your spine, and into the base of your skull, a loud ringing, reverberating with your very bones like an explosion.The orchestra/band comes to a halt, finished tuning their instrument. They strike a single note, and you wake up, sun beaming down on your wretched face.To be continued...
And, thread archived at http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/qstarchive/4936182/Thank you all for joining me, and my apologies for the large delays between posts - the QM's curse continually barraged me with an indelible quantity of bullshit, including family sickness, personal injury, and then when that wasn't enough it threw a fucking hurricane at me. Hopefully, next thread will be moving a little faster.I hope you are all still enjoying the show, and I appreciate each and every one of you greatly.Thank you for reading!
>>4983635Thanks for running!
>>4983635Thanks for running, dude! Hopefully the next thread can go a bit smoother with IRL insanity. Try to stay safe.
Remembered that tomorrow is (((Rosh Hashanah))) and thus I am mandated to not do any work for a day so unfortunately I will have to probably post our first thread on Tuesday, but I will try to prep it early! L'shana tovah, I say, immediately opening myself up to slurs and tomatoes.
Thanks for running, QM!
Alright, thread going up in an hour or two, keep an eye out.