5642/Winterland Visit

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Winterland Visit
Date of Scene: 17 January 2018
Location: The System <TS>
Synopsis: Yomi visits a recovering Lexicon, and they discuss recent events
Cast of Characters: Lexicon, Yomi Isayama

Lexicon has posed:
    Britannica certainly is a different sort of place when there's no massive resouce drain. Despite its rustic appearance, the Drive's city is filled with eccentric individuals in esoteric, unusual outfits. Some don't even look proper for the Drive's wintery climate, but that doesn't seem to bother them. Even in the center of the city, a figure in an outfit not appropriate for winter weather emerges from the Cathoderal's great doors.

    "I'll be fine," Lexicon assures Stylono, standing in the doorway. She turns slightly, showing a glowing red crack down her back, "I'm about 95 percent recovered, I can even feel a resource flow again, and it's just visiting with Isayama, anyway." Turning back, she nods once, "Just watch Index and Codex for me while I'm out."

    When she glances down at the twins, the look hardens, and both of them duck out of sight. Yeah, she's still a little mad that they scared her like that.

    With a sigh, Lexicon turns her back to the Cathoderal and exits the grounds amidst the crunch of fresh snow. Though the roads are cleared, she hasn't had the sidewalks done yet. A hand raises to tap her chin in thought. Maybe making the twins do that should be part of their punishment...

Yomi Isayama has posed:
There were a few odd looks given when Yomi left school with a scaf and heavier coat. She had just waved it off, saying she was visiting someone in the mountains, and that seemed good enough. After a quick check on her phone to make sure there weren't any emergencies going on, she made her way toward the gate to Britannica.

"It's different when I knew we were going into that tower, but being out here is just so cold..." Yomi shivers a bit, but she smiles once she sees Lexicon. "Sorry I'm late. You're looking better already." At least the twins know they're loved... Yomi will have to stop by to give them hugs before she leaves again. "So! What've you got planned for us?"

Lexicon has posed:
    "Yomi," Lexicon greets the exorcist as soon as she's spotted, accenting the single word with a nod and one of those small smiles of hers, "It's because you had all that adrenaline going, thinking about the Tower's challenge or an upcoming fight, but don't worry." Eyes closing, she tilts her head up slightly, "It's not like we'll be having a picnic or anything."

    Folding her hands behind her back, neatly concealed inside her voluminous sleeves, the DCC sets a leisurely pace through town, "I was thinking a quick drink or a meal at a cafe I know about, then we could visit Christmas' shop. They're rather close to one another." An eye opens, and she adds, "As my guest, it's my treat, so don't worry about paying your own way. This is non-negotiable, Isayama Yomi."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"And knowing I wouldn't be out in the cold for too long.." Yomi wrinkles her nose a bit. "But you're right, I'm usually focused on the fight. It's nice sometimes to not have to think abut it..."

Falling into pace beside the DCC, Yomi tilts her head slightly toward her friend. "You definitely know your city better than I do, so I'll trust whatever you pick." She pauses, opens her mouth, then laughs softly. Full name. She might be in trouble. "Okay, okay! I'll accept it." She reaches up to slide ana rm around Lexicon's shoulders, leaning gently against her in a hug that won't slow down their walking. "I've only been here a few times there -wasn't- a crisis, so it's nice to get to see it so peaceful here."

Lexicon has posed:
    Lexicon might be the shorter of the two, but she knows how to exude authority. It comes with having two little sisters (who might in some definitions be daughters?) to take care of. A practiced Mom Voice.

    Oddly, none of the passing programs seem to react to her. They probably only know Silver Soul by her Divinity form, which as demonstrated today is handy for avoiding unwanted attention.

    "And to your earlier point, thank you," Lexicon nods once, "I'm feeling a lot better, too. The repair utility is almost done, I can feel a resource flow again, I could probably even transform if I wanted to." With a laugh, she adds, "I'm just content I can get up and walk again." Leaning forward slightly, she glances up towards Yomi's face, though the glowing red scar up her back is visible above the hem of her outfit, "As for you, how are you holding up? I don't recall you mentioning any injuries after that business with the Tower, but.." Head tilting, "And Ranguren?"

Yomi Isayama has posed:
Mom Voice only works so well on Yomi thanks to, well.... not having a mother. But she still knows when arguing is pointless, so she goes along with it. When she pulls her arm back again, Yomi notices that red glow... but it does look much better than when it was leaking code the other day. There's a brief concerned look on her face, but seeing the improvement and knowing Lexicon isn't straining it at least soothes her worries.

"You should probably wait to try transforming until that's completely healed, but... I'm glad it's better." Yomi smiles and shakes her head. "I wasn't injured, though... now that I think of it, I wonder what happened to that coin when the tower vanished..." She thinks on that for a moment, then shrugs. "Ranguren is a Spirit Beast. All the virus really did was scratch him. He's already pretty well recovered. But I appreciate your concern. He's just... a bit different than most creatures, I suppose."

Lexicon has posed:
    "Coin?" Lexicon tilts her head, but dismisses it quickly as she straightens her posture again. It's a simple shrug she offers, "If you left something there, it's probably still there, in the Tower. To be honest I've never had a chance to experiment like that." Glancing upward, she considers, "Though there were times it left things behind, like stuffed toys..."

    Another shrug.

    "I didn't think your spirit beast would be too shook up, but I thought I'd ask in case I was wrong." Lexicon pauses, then reaches to grab and pull open a door to a corner cafe. It's a nice, cozy place with lots of 'distressed' hardwood decor to look old-fashioned, but everything looks too new to be 'actually' old. "I feel pretty lucky, honestly. It seems like Caerbannog's powers were sealed in until Asterios separated them." With a smirk, she adds, "Don't worry. I've run ten scans on myself since I learned about it. No infection, just physically damaged code."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Mm. Just a ten yen coin I used to test the weird physics in there. The floors sort of... wrapped around, so I dropped it and it kept falling forever." Yomi pauses for a moment,, glancing toward Lexicon. "Stuffed toys?"

Being in out of the cold is welcome, even if the actual age and attempted age of the decor don't perfectly match. "Well, I do appreciate it. I'm sure he would too, but he's not exactly the best at showing things like that." She pauses again, turning to prod Lexicon's shoulder with a finger. "I should hope not. I don't want you growing bunny ears and turning more evil. And who knows what we'd find in your head..." A pause, and Yomi glances up for a moment. "Though you know... when we were in there, we saw a memory that had your precursor in it. Or... would mother be better? She looked a lot like you."

Lexicon has posed:
    Lexicon steps in after, closing the door gently, "Hm. Then I wouldn't worry about it. Even if the tower spat it out, who knows where it'd actually wind up." Glancing over her shoulder, she nods, "The plushies? Yeah. Christmas gathered them all up. It's one of the things Christmas sells at her shop."

    She lets the subject of Ranguran drop at that, though. She got the answer she was hoping for, and that's all she needs.

    Crossing the cafe, Lexicon selects a booth and wastes no time seating herself. Tapping the table pulls up a holographic menu, which she flips through like one would a tablet's touchscreen, "Trust me, I've got about as much interest in viral infections as you'd have in donating your heart while you're still using it." Closing her eyes, she recalls something that prompts a shudder when they open again, "--And even if I did, remembering how Tutela deals with troublesome viruses would have Viral-Me fleeing this system and never coming back."

    Tapping her selection, she punctuates the thought with, "Screw. That."

    Blink. As her menu sinks back into the table, Lexicon glances up, "My predecessor? Artifex had memories of Pedia that you got to see?"

Yomi Isayama has posed:
Guardian Spirit Beasts are strange things. "Ah? There were that many of them?" Well, they'll be going there next, so she'll have a chance to check them out.

She takes a seat across from Lexicon and, after a moment's hesitation, taps the table. "Heh.. It's nice to know there's someone even you're scared of." This whole floating translucent menu thing is new to her, and she keeps squinting at it, shifting her focus between it and Lexicon on the other side. "You probably take stuff like this for granted, but I have never seen anything like it before in my life..." She pauses again, leaning to the side so she can peer around the menu. "What would you recommend, anyway? Since I've never been here before." After a few pokes at the air, she taps the table again to dismiss the menu. "Actually, you know... surprise me. You order something for me." Yomi folds her hands and smiles across the table. "Mmm? Oh, yes, though only a little bit. They used to be enemies on paper, though Artifex kept making excuses to spend time with her as a friend."

Lexicon has posed:
    Lexicon shrugs, "I don't remember seeing that many when it first happened, but she never seems to run out. Maybe she makes them herself now." Christmas is, after all, a virus. They have weird abilities sometimes. 'Spawn:Cheap Souvenir' isn't outside the realm of possibility. Or maybe 'Spawn:Useless Knicknack' suits Christmas better? The DCC shakes her head lightly to dismiss the thought string, calling up her menu again.

    "'Surprise me' requests are risky, you know. I don't actually know much about what you like to eat." She flips through a few pages to something reasonably safe: Sandwiches, and makes a selection, "Something warm, since you're having trouble with our climate today." She then taps the menu away, leaning forward to rest her chin on one hand.

    "You're saying Artifex was trying to make friends?" Her eyes half-lid in thought, "I'd only ever heard that they were fierce rivals. That the way DCCs interact today was very different from back then. I suppose it's possible she was trying to change how it was..."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"That's what makes it an adventure! Pick out something I can only get here." Yomi looks thoughtful for a moment. "I just remembered I don't even know what kinds of cuisine Britannica is known for... or if there's an equivalent to some country on earth."

The exorcist rests an arm on the table. "I think so, from the few snippets we saw. Your predecessor... she kept saying they were supposed to be enemies, but Artifex said she needed inspiration for her art.. something like that." Yomi shrugs a bit. "Seems like neither wanted to fight, so Artifex couldn't be all that bad of a person." She glances briefly toward a window. "I haven't really met all the other DCCs, but it doesn't seem like you're actively fighting each other or anything."

Lexicon has posed:
    The Silver DCC lowers her gaze thoughtfully, "We're rivals, but it's a ... friendly sort of rivalry. We fight to control the Hub's main spire every few days, and our main competition is through the growth and development of our Drives." A girl in a maid costume but no arms-- just free-floating hands in white gloves-- arrives and sets a plate down in front of Lexicon. A highly European...meatball sandwich, with the undeniable scent of garlic and other herbs. She nods to the server, "Thank you very much."

    She takes a moment to examine her food while Yomi's plate is set down. It contains a bowl of thick soup-- chowder. Except it's blue. The same color of blue as a Poochooze, oddly enough.

    "It's not what you're probably thinking," is Lexicon's quick defense, "Blizzoysters do that when cooked." She leans on one hand again, mulling over her food, "It's interesting, though... If that's her real memory, than what we know about how those two interacted was actually wrong." With a humming noise, she adds, "And I bet it's those kinds of memories that Caerbannog messed with to lead to that 'betrayal' nonsense."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Oh, like the Tigers and Giants. Ah..." Yomi shakes her head. "Japanese sports teams. They're pretty bitter rivals, but it's still sports. I mean... you all can sit down at a table and eat together without tying to kill each other, after all."

She glances up at the maid and smiles. "Thank you." Yomi may be used to seeing non-humans, but her world doesn't usually have them in public. Then again, there seem to be all kinds of intelligent types here. "Ah? I wasn't going to say anything." She grins at Lexicon and picks up a spoon. "Was a bit curious, though. Blue food isn't that common." She did ask for something she could only get here.... "Oysters, huh." Well, seafood can be good. Yomi glances up briefly as she brings the first sponful to her mouth. "Better to be wrong this way, though. Artifex disappeared when the tower did, so if she does show up, we can get some answers." After taking a moment to taste her spoonful and swallow, Yomi grins at the DCC. "She might be scared of you, though, depending how much she remembers. You do look like her rival, after all."

Lexicon has posed:
    When 'tigers and giants' come up, Lexicon tilts her head in lack of understanding, but Yomi's quick to explain and she nods once she gets it. "Something like that. And we help each other out in times of need. Like when Theurgus came over here to help with the Tower, or when I went to Locus." Closing her eyes, she admits, "It's really not too complicated when I say it out loud. It's less political than you might think, even though each of us effectively runs a small country by your standards."

    "Or," she adds after a pause, "Maybe a city-state is closer."

    Glancing down at her food, Lexicon mulls her thoughts, "I wasn't inside so I didn't see the memories you did. I don't know what to expect if or when I encounter Artifex again. She might be scared like you say, she might get angry-- remember she wasn't exactly pleased last time we met. She might even keep calling me Pedia even if she knows we're not the same."

    Eyes closing, she lifts her sandwich, "We'll just have to see how it turns out."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"I remember seeing one of the other ones once, too. The, uh.. purple hair?" She only met that one once, and very briefly. "In any case, I'm glad you can all get along. Makes for a much nicer world."

Yomi slowly shakes her head. "Hard to say. The Artifex in those memories was really shy, though." She dips her spoon down for some more soup, looking thoughtful as she places it into her mouth. "I hope she ends up being friendly, anyway. I bet you can find a lot you didn't know about Pedia from her." Leaning forward a bit, she reaches over to touch Lexicon's elbow. "I'll try to be here, if you want. Moral support and all that."

Lexicon has posed:
    "Ah, I remember," Lexicon closes her eyes, "The Cadenza DCCs, Saltavi and Cantio. Most of us blame Saltavi's inability to take things seriously for how casual we are around one another." She taps her chin thoughtfully as she eats, until she hits a realization. "...I'll have to think about it some more, but Artifex could be the one we have to thank for this."

    Glancing up, she changes the subject, "How's the chowder? Britannica doesn't have a sea, but we do have mountain clams."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Sometimes it's not bad to have a bit of silliness to keep the serious at bay. Besides... it seems like you all like it that way." Yomi tilts her head slightly. "Is Artifex related to Saltavi, then?" She only really knows a little of the DCCs besides Lexion and Theurgus.

"Oh, it's really good! I don't even know what I expected with the color, but I like it." She blinks and peers down at the bowl. "I didn't even know they could live in the mountains. Either way, it's pretty good..."

Lexicon has posed:
    "Jeez," Lexicon closes her eyes, pushing her empty plate away, "I hope not, just thinking about it gives me a headache."

    While nodding in regard to the chowder, she taps the tabletop again, then works through something on the menu. After a moment, a series of numbers reduces to a line of zeros, and she dismisses the screen, "They live by the rivers and burrow in ice, but clams are clams." With her hands, she indicates something slightly larger than her plate, "About this big. They're easy hunting unless there's a lot, so Blizzoyster chowder is one of the things you'll get in Britannica that won't be sold in Cadenza, Vector, Arcade, or even Locus."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
When the screen pops up, Yomi glances at it briefly, then looks away again. Better not stare at Lexicon paying for her food. "I may be forced to do a tour around here someday and check out all the other countries. But I don't think my favorite will change." She flashes a grin at Lexicon as she finishes up her soup. "You're right, that did warm me up though. I'll have to think of where I can take you next time you come to visit me..."

Lexicon has posed:
    With a laugh, Lexicon pushes back and stands up, "Japan has all kinds of interesting foods. I'm sure you'll find a way to surprise me without also pranking me." Yes, she knows what wasabi is. She wiggles fingers in a wave to the program managing the counter on her way out, and holds the door for Yomi rather than leave ahead of her friend.

    "We'll pop by Chrismas' curio shop next. I saw you at her party but things got kinda weird and gloomy." She gestures, "It's just a few doors down, and she's awful nice for a virus."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
Yomi would never do such a thing. Probably. "Now that I have a better idea what sorts of foods you have here in Britannica, yeah..." She gives a polite bob of the head toward the counter as she steps out into the cold. At least it's not very far of a walk!

"Ah... yeah, I didn't have much chance to actually talk to her." Once they're both in the street, she leans over to link arms with Lexicon for the rest of the short walk to the shop. All the better to leech some warmth from the DCC. "I don't imagine you'd let her stay here if she wasn't. So even though she's a virus, she can't infect anyone? I'm not sure exactly how viruses work here."

Lexicon has posed:
    When arms are linked, Lexicon leans away briefly, though eventually surrenders. She folds her arms behind her back again, though. No holding of hands is going to happen here.

    "A virus is like... a monster," Lexicon tries to find good examples, "Like the youkai in that house I helped you with. Those are what I would call B-rank, or mid-rank, viruses. Strong, a little dangerous especially if underestimated, sometimes they have weird abilities or powers. Christmas is one of these-- there's a lot of viruses in that range, it's pretty broad." Lifting a hand, she projects an image of a common Poochooze, "Things like these, or Baby Bugs, or S-Dogs, are C-rank or low-level viruses. Relatively easy for someone like you or me to deal with, and in some cases overall harmless even to the average program."

    "Shit like Caerbannog... S-rank. Highly dangerous, even for a DCC. Whether it's intellect, special abilities, or some mixture of the two. I'm pretty sure she's the only virus the System has had that was /that/ dangerous. Most viruses don't have a corruptive or infectious trait like she did. Or if they do, it's not nearly that nasty."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
That would look a little weird... almost like Yomi walking with a younger sister or something! Not that she'd ever say that out loud.

"Ah, I see... Most of those youkai in the house were Category C... about equivalent to your B-rank viruses, if I'm getting the levels right." She thinks for a moment. "Not all youkai are harmful either... but most are. I suspect it's about the same, then." She wrinkles her nose a bit in distaste when Caerbannog comes up. "I'm just glad she's been taken care of. I don't want to think what would have happened with only a few of us there."

Lexicon has posed:
    "Yes," Lexicon affirms with a nod, "I'm glad that thing is gone. Compared to that, a virus like Christmas is like a puppy that bites you sometimes without meaning to." In other words, pretty harmless. The pair passes a window filled with odd knicknacks and Lexicon interrupts herself, "We're here." Unhooking an arm, she gets the door.

    The interior is about what one would expect from a curio shop. It's all shelves with items on display, and a glass counter with more display items. They all, however, seem to either be directly from or else somehow related to the System Tower. An entire pyramid of cute (as opposed to scary) Patty Cat plushies in various outfits, including ones of each Drive Core Controller AND versions in their Digital Divinity outfits. A large model of Viral Super Robot Galakryzer stands over a collection of boxes containing the not-yet-assembled versions. Hats with Poochooze ears. Statues of Captain Peregrine and Earl Carthage, and die-cast toys of their respective ships, Vip Vicar and... Earl Carthage. Toy weapons. A video game aboud avoiding traps.

    And a floating 2-dimensional picture of a girl in winter attire. The image changes from one of contentment to an excited expression, the girl's face having stars in her eyes. A blank blue box floating just below the image starts displaying white text.

    Oh! Lady Silver Soul! Welcome back!
    Is this a friend of yours? I don't think we've been introduced.

    "That's right," Lexicon gestures, "Isayama Yomi, a friend of mine from outside the System. Yomi, this is Christmas."

    A pleasure to meet you!

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Oh wow.. this place is nice." Yomi pauses to look at the Patty Cat plushes. "...while she was still infected, Artifex was trying to purify the one from the tower into something like this. I think maybe they used to be citizens of her Drive."

But there are introductions to make! "...she is so cute, Lexi." Yomi gives a polite bow to the virus and smiles brightly. "You as well, Christmas. You can just call me Yomi if you like." She glances briefly around the various displays. "And this shop is as cute as you are!"

Lexicon has posed:
    The image projected on Chrismas' screen fades back to the eyes-closed contented smile when her store and appearance are praised.

    Thank you for the compliment! Please look around as much as you want.
    If you have any questions, please ask right away!

    Eyes closing, Lexicon nods once in appreciation before she joins Yomi in browsing. When the subject of Patty Cat comes up, she purses her lips, "Trying to purify it? Bunnabelle mentioned something about them being corrupted programs, so that stands to reason." She folds her arms, eyes closed in thought, "She kept saying the corruption couldn't be fixed because it was compressed...but I think she knew that was wrong, that's why she was trying it anyway."

    An eye opens, at the plushie display, "It wasn't working because her kernel was the source of the virus. I'd wager now that it's pure, if she's still out there and able to try, she'd clean it up in an afternoon." Well. That's a very generous estimate, probably.

    Returning to the displayed items, she reaches out and collects a Saint Poochooze Stress Ball-- a dog slime with a santa hat, "One of these is what was guarding Christmas. It's where these silly hats came from. Was about four meters across, they don't usually get that big."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Okay, we will!" Yomi turns away from Christmas and starts to look at some of the things in the shop. "She really is nice." Giving a nod, she picks up a Patty Cat and turns it over. "Well.. yet another thing to get fixed once you find her. I'm willing to be optimistic that she'll get what she really wants."

The doll is put down, and she laughs at the stress ball. "That is a very large and probably very dangerous cute thing. Oh, hey..." Yomi picks up a Poochooze ear hat and puts it on her head. "What do you think? I bet Kagura would love one of those. She's into all the weirdly-cute stuff."

Lexicon has posed:
    "Mmhm," Lexicon affirms, "I wouldn't let her stay in the city if she hadn't proven herself beyond the shadow of a doubt. She's been nothing but honest and polite the whole time she's been here."

    Putting the stress ball back, she glances up to regard the hat, "Looks fine on you-- I don't know Kagura at all though." With a helpless shrug, she admits, "So I'd defer to you on that. If you think she'd like it, she probably would." Stepping around, she moves to the back of the store to collect a book, flipping through it. Definitive DCC Guide, it claims, though it appears to be a photo collection, "Huh. I never saw this floor type.. Only seems to have appeared in Vector, all these shots have Struo or Conati in them." Flipping some more, she adds, "And this, entirely different layout only shows in photos with Alea.." She closes it, then procures a second copy, "I'm getting one of these for each of us."

    "At least you can get a bit familiar with the other Controllers before you meet them."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Just fine?" Yomi grins teasingly down at the DCC and takes the hat off. "Yeah, I think she'll like it. I'm getting this for her." She tilts her head slightly, "Kagura is the youngest exorcist in our office, a couple years younger than me. Officially, I'm her bodyguard, but I also know she can take care of herself. We do hunts a lot together."

Carrying the hat with her, she follows Lexicon and peeks over the DCC's shoulder. "Oh, those are some pretty nice pictures, too. I hope I get to meet them... your friends, rivals, however you want to call them."

Lexicon has posed:
    The DCC nods once, "Well, if it works for her sense of humor like you're saying, here." Lexicon collects the hat from Yomi, then hands it plus the two books to Christmas. The virus carefully uses her text-box to inspect each item, and after a moment, Lexicon issues payment the same way she had in the cafe; digitally. With a satisfied sound, she tucks one book under her arm while offering the other and the hat to the exorcist.

    "I did say my treat, don't worry about this at all," Lexicon grins lightly, raising her free hand to wave on her way to the door, "Take care, Christmas."

    Take care! Please visit again soon!

    Once again, Lexicon holds the door, "It was good to catch up, though. And again, thanks for taking care of my sisters."

Yomi Isayama has posed:
"Ah? ...well..." There really is no way she'll be able to get away from that, is there? "I'll let her know it's from you, too." As they walk toward the door, Yomi leans back and lifts a hand. "Nice meeting you, Christmas!"

As she walks outside, Yomi holds the book and hat under one arm. Once they're back on the street, the exorcist leans down a bit and gives Lexicon a more proper hug, being careful of her back. "It really was nice, yeah. Best date I've had in a while." Standing up straight again, she gives the DCC a brief wink. "Next time in Tokyo, okay? And you know I'd do just about anything for those two. They're a lot of trouble, but they're such good kids."

Lexicon has posed:
    Lexicon DID insist the day was her treat. She assumes when she visits Tokyo that Yomi will have a chance to return the favor, if she's so inclined. She does hesitate when hugged, before returning the gesture somewhat awkwardly, "Ah.. you're welcome, Yomi." Once separated again, she adds, "I look forward to seeing what Tokyo has to offer other than freaky Japanese ghosts."

    Eyes closing, she shifts her hands to hold the book in both, nodding once, "I do agree. Their hearts are both in the right place, they're just so reckless that I can't help but worry." Glancing down, she adds, "Maybe Theurgus was right, and I should take them with me on lower-risk outings." Looking back up, she nods once more. The walk has taken the pair back to the System Bus, conveniently, "Don't be a stranger, okay? You can reach me any time. Until then, take care of yourself."

    It's here that Lexicon pauses. Her brow furrows, as if she has to go back and reconsider something. When it clicks, her face turns red, "Wh-what do you mean /date/?!"