5819/ICoT: Reunion

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ICoT: Reunion
Date of Scene: 28 April 2018
Location: The Bastion
Synopsis: Everyone gathers to plan their next step, with local law enforcement dropping by.
Cast of Characters: The Kid, Alexis, William Pauwel, 673, Kotone Yamakawa, 1094, Priscilla

The Kid has posed:
    The Sundown Path. Consisting of a series of stone bridges stretching between the hills of Caelondia, it has a reputation as a place of leisure. Piles of cushions sit under awnings to give strollers a place to take a load off, and stalls for the selling of street food dot every five steps. In spite of the name, it's just past sunset now, a cool night breeze whipping across the gas lantern-lit roads.

    Certain Elites may have had an experience with this place before. Indeed, this was where the Multiverse first found Kid after the Calamity. How ironic that Zulf chose it as the meeting place. Perhaps it was the first thing that came to mind; it's frequented by couples looking for a romantic stroll.

    However, this setting is far from romantic. Zulf has everyone wedged between two closed stalls in an unlit area. Certainly private, but a bit cramped. Zia doesn't seem to mind at all, bearing a grateful smile at seeing everyone again, but the Kid looks incredibly uncomfortable and baffled, and Zulf just looks very aggrieved.

    "All right," the Uran diplomat says. "You have your... boy," he continues, gesturing at the Kid, whose expression shifts to one of annoyance. "I believe you owe us answers now. Why are you seeking us out? I am reasonably certain that I evaded any pursuers on my way here, so speak freely, but quick as you can." This has done little to ease Kid's confusion, but he looks to everyone else for answers.

Alexis has posed:
This place looks a -hell- of a lot different when it's one piece and not put through the end of the world.

Alexis can't help but think of that about most of Caelondia they've seen, but the Sundown Path is the first place to really show just how badly the disaster broke things... So in a way it's kind of fitting that this is where they're going to finally get everyone together.

Together a little closer than would be comfortable. The tomboy has to restrain herself from trying to squirm and find a more comfortable position when that would just jostle everyone else around as well. Or maybe it was not having a Pokemon out at her side due to the space limitations that were making her a little awkward. Either way.

She figits with the collar of her hoodie, trying to at least tug it into a position where the hood isn't crammed up against the back of her neck. Despite the reassurances they weren't followed by others, she can't help but feel a bit... anxious, just knowing those security guys are probably out there somewhere either way. "One of you guys," she grumbles and looks pointedly the more intellectual members of the group, "that actually understand this wibble-wobbled timey-wimey stuff explain it."

William Pauwel has posed:
Somebody who understands all too well how timey-wimey nonsense works just so happens to be standing right there.

He looks a little... different, though. Mostly because he no longer has flesh-and-blood arms. Instead, one has been replaced by something that looks very much like an armored gauntlet, while the other is some kind of weird industrial assembly of pistons and micro-actuators. Something terrible happened to William Pauwel's arms, but he doesn't seem all too perturbed.

Mostly, he just seems to be happy that everyone's back together again. S'pecially the Kid. "You still have that gun I gave you?" Will asks the white-haired youth, "You know. For Christmas. You wouldn't remember, but it should have my signature on it, on the stock--"

Oh. Right. Explanations.

"Right, uh. So!" Will coughs into a metal fist. "Sometime in the past-for-us, we adventured with you all to restore power to a device called the Bastion. The Bastion was a mechanism developed by a real wise Mancer that could turn back the clock and reset the world to a previous, unmolested state. We had to do that because something called The Calamity obliterated most of Caelondia, again 'cause of some Mancer's invention."

"Now," he gestures to Zia, "When we activated the Bastion, miss Zia there asked to be taken far enough away from it to be shielded from its effects, 'cause she didn't want to forget what we'd been through, but the two of you stayed behind. Which is why you ain't got no recollection of any of all of this."

"The important message here," Will explains, "Is that there's still a potential for the Calamity to occur again, and then all of what we did would be fer nothin'. So what we need to do is prevent that from happening and save all of Caelondia and the wilds beyond from destruction."


"Y'all can act all disbelievin' now," Will says with a knowing smile, "I know it's pretty hard t' take in."

Rory White (673) has posed:
    Rory has chosen her most diplomatic Morph for the mission. So, she appears as last time. The blue-haired lady in the white robes, all covered in frills and pockets. She doesn't mind the crampedness at all, being a robot with no real concept of personal space.

    Uncomfortable? Not really. Unfortunate? Sure.

    "You're unlikely to believe this," she begins at Alexis's prodding, "But this isn't the first time we've met. In fact, when we first met you, Caelondia was reduced to ashes and ruin. You three were among the only survivors from Caelondia proper. You three and an old man of the Mancers. Some terrible superweapon was unleashed... but the old man had a way to undo everything. But it took all of us-- helping this young man here..." she eyes the Kid warmly... "-- to retrieve the parts needed for his miracle machine. ... Which worked. It undid everything, and you forgot what happened. Forgot us. I don't know if it turned back time or what... but seeing you use that hammer so deftly, maybe not. Either way... we need your help. Because unless the chain of events is broken, history will repeat itself."

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
It was time to meet, this place was normally a place for couples to go out on strolls togehter, today that was not the case. She was casually dressed today. They have answers to give, oh lordy do they have answers to give today. They are kinda all up close and personal now, that's all right ith her. Oh to have a Timelord on hand to help explain this, sadly the Doctor is off running for his life somewhere and it's not here.

"Understanding it is an overstatement Alexis. First off the name is Kotone Yamakawa and both of you are ... our friends it's as Rory said. After nearly a year of collecting cores we were able to get the machinery online to give everyone a second chance. You both told us to come find you aftermath to help in perventing the same fate from playing out before. I know this sounds insane..."

Flamel Parsons (1094) has posed:
    Parsons adjusts his sunglasses and his big adventury secret ranger outfit and fixes his tie. The cramped space is cramping him! He keeps the usual upbeat positivity though. "So!" He says, gesturing to The Kid. "How much were you told? Enough to know you needed to come see us, obviously, but I dunno much more than that!" And he also nods to Zulf. "'Cause we definitely owe you answers and information. We're seeking you guys out because -- you don't remember this -- that was what we all agreed on before."

    He turns to the pair, and, beaming, says, "So, they've covered most of the important business. I'm noooo good at explanations myself, I'm sure you know that, ahah." He gives an awkward chuckle to Zulf. "But at the very least, we know you're the ones we can trust and depend on. And hopefully we've got the proof you need! We've got the list you gave us, Zulf. And I think First Priscilla has the data for you on file that ought to prove your old help for the Concord, Kid. And the Journal that Zia's dad wrote! Oh, and Zia remembers you both terribly fondly I'm sure! And footage, and..." He keeps counting off.

    "Really though, if you'd rather not believe us, I won't blame you. Sounds pretty strange, right? So I think focusing on the future is probably a good idea. You know, for a given value of future. We wanted to get back together so that we could try to work on making sure this doesn't happen again, which means teaming back up, and working together again, to protect people from the problems we've found out about! Whether or not you believe it, that at least isn't something I think people as good as you were would turn down. Our plan is to spend put in a lot of elbow grease to defuse some of the leads we have for heavy tension, before they can snowball into the Calamity. Go around and make a few folks less stressed out, the way I usually work! And if we start there, I'm sure we'll get more leads on fixing the way things were heading and making sure everyone winds up making it through."

    As always, hopeful, yet understanding of any skepticism. Revealing a bit of the plan, too, in broad strokes. But as ever, he's probably coming on a little strong with the cheerfulness in a context like this.

Priscilla has posed:
    Though seeing Caelondia itself stitched back together should be a sight far more demanding of anyone's attention, for all of its grand impossibility, and the otherworldly contrast when put against the shattered and floating ruins that had been all others' only exposure to it, for the most part those thoughts sit in the second row behind being relieved to see the Kid and Zulf again for Priscilla. Even if they had forgotten everything, simply looking on their faces and hearing their voices again does much to alleviate the tension surrounding the cosmic impossibility Priscilla had insisted be enacted when last she had seen either of them.

    Also, since Zia is here, that means she'd gotten to keep that particular promise to the Ura girl as well. Good.

    There's no way she's going to fit into a highly cramped space, so she's done the next best thing and turned invisible just outside of the huddle. The story only really has to be explained once if someone does it thoroughly, and Parsons is exactly right in that her business before coming here had be collecting as much Concord data on the Kid and Zulf and the entire Bastion operation as she could round up without it being also too sensitive to display in front of non-Concord members. So she says "Sir Parsons is correct. Thou hast only to ask to see it.", though she'll have at least disclosed the whole invisibility thing beforehand so nobody spazzes out.

    It's actually a folder on her person, if someone actually does, largely full of photographs, mission plans, and some choice copied pages from Rucks' journal, along with the odd filed report, and the Kid's Concord mugshot and ID (which she hands back to him either way). When she gets to the picture of Rucks though, she fires the shot in the dark, and asks "Art either of thou, at this time, familiar with this man?"

The Kid has posed:
    Alexis' answer nets a raised eyebrow from the natives. "Oh honestly. I think you could explain it better than you know," Zia says with crossed arms. But thnakfully Will is able tos tep in. Everyone is clearly very taken aback by the state of his arms, but his explanation is somehow more shocking. Even Rory trying to pare it down to simpler terms doesn't seem to help much.

    Zulf immediately starts to try and wriggle out of the meeting location. "This is ridiculous. I'm leaving." Zia grabs his robe and pulls him back, a look of deep consternation on her face. "Zulf, please," she begs. The diplomat yanks himself free and scowls at her. "I don't know how they pulled you into this, girl, but you had best remove yourself from them." Zia is panicking now, and she looks to the Kid, who just has a puzzled look on his face. "Sounds crazy, but... I bet the Mancers could build somethin' like that if they wanted. They never did say what the Bastion was for, other'n a 'safe place...'"

    Acknowledgement as to how insane it all sounds from Kotone and Flamel seems to help in settling Zulf down. Her leans against one of the stalls surrounding them and frowns. "So you are saying you need our aide in stopping this. I very much doubt I would be of much service. The Mancers are an island among the guilds of Caelondia. I have had little contact with them, so the likes of me won't convince them. What is this thing they did that caused this 'Calamity' anyway?"

    The words of Priscilla from the empty space still makes the two startle anyway, but they accept the file and begin to go through it. Kid examines his ID with wide eyes. "... I've never been as tired as I look in this," he mutters. Zulf busies himself with reading the copies from the journal, his face going hard as he finds answers to his prior question. "So, the Mancers aimed to destroy our people... well, there's no discussing it, if this is true. There is no way I can think of to shake them of their paranoia and xenophobia. You will all have to seize their lab and destroy their weapon."

    The Kid's eyes widen. "Hey now, no need to go that far... Mancers are smart, I reckon if we show 'em all this, they'll change their tune. Right?" He looks to Zia, and everyone else, for support. Zia looks... unsure. "My father is working on it. I know he doesn't want it completed, but the others..."

Rory White (673) has posed:
    "Zulf. Who exactly should the Mancers being answering to if they are making such a thing and readying to use it? Whose permission should they have to even THINK of such a project?" Rory asks quite quickly, leaving the finer points of the socialization to the others as she seizes upon a possibility.

Alexis has posed:
"Eh, I don't do explainations," Alexis replies to Zia, "I just find trouble and figuratively punch it in the face via weaponizing cute creatures." Though at the end smirks a little at the girl. She's just downplaying how intelligent she may really be, as usual. "Besides..."

She pauses as the explaination/discussion gets into the more tangled pseudo-political aspect of the matter. "... That. That part, with all the potentially shadowy organizations and what not, is the part that's hard to tangle." Especially when an expert on such things like Flamel is here.

They manage to get Zulf to not leave, but his suggestion has her raising a hand to pinch the bridge of her nose between two fingers. "Can we not go smashing things unless there is no other option? The idea of redoing this was to avoid ticking off their... anxiety towards outsiders," she avoids using xenophobe, if only for the Kid and others present because it is pretty accurate, "towards the rest of the Multiverse as well?"

Flamel Parsons (1094) has posed:
    "And here's hoping you never will be! That twenty-four-seven marathon of work on this business you put yourself through was something nobody deserves, especially someone at your age." Parsons says, gesturing at the ID. "And, really, I don't at all blame you if you decide to withhold believing this for now. You'll see more proof we know about this as we go, unless something went really wrong."

    He then shakes his head at Zulf. "C'mon, you're a diplomat. You know that going direct like that isn't the solution, once an idea's rooted deep enough it can't be broken without a better idea. This is a psychohazardous social phenomenon. I think the Kid's about right, though there'll be plenty of fighting. Probably mostly fighting psychic constructs of stress and hostility!" He looks to Zia, and regards her unsteadiness and uncertainty the same way a bridge support might regard its charge. "Yeah! If we chat with him, that'll definitely be a good starting place on finding out more about the Mancers as a whole, and seeing if we can help them out with not needing what they're building."

    "Trust me. I know all about vague yet menacing government agencies. I'm actually an agent of one back home! As long as we play this by the proper rules and work our hardest, this is sure to work out without a repeat of the Calamity." He says, with an unbearably intense optimism in his voice. Boy he really is supercharging that hope, isn't he?

William Pauwel has posed:
"If we go in there all guns blazing, we might be able to destroy their weapon, but... That'll just make it so that they'd feel justified in their paranoia. That, hey, maybe there's a reason they need to build weapons like these in the first place." Will shakes his head slowly, "It's a short term solution, you know? There's no saying that they wouldn't just build a new Calamity Weapon somewhere down the line."

He's silent for a moment, then, as if deep in thought. And then: "I think the way to do it is through public pressure," he says. "We need to find credible evidence that the weapon exists and is being worked on, then cook up a story with that and what we already know to disseminate among the public. The Mancers might have some real bad eggs leadin' it, but I want to believe that Caelondia as a whole can see why somethin' like the Calamity Weapon is a step too far to attack folks who they ain't even at war with anymore. Even if it's pointed at the Ura, there'd be major collateral damage besides."

"Once the people know and enough public outcry is roused up, then maybe we can change the Mancers from the inside. Push some folks outta power... You know? Paint it like they're buildin' a weapon to hold the rest of the city hostage."

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
It's a good thing Kotone is not alone here, ot she might be fumbling over ssomethign like this. It was good that Rory, Flamel, Priscilla, Alexis and Rory were here as well. So as a grtoup they should have some hope of explaining it and Zia being here is helpful as well. Then will steps in and his arms get an eyebrow raise here as she looks at that for a moment.

"Yes from what I gathered hte Mancers have gone off on their own with no saction with this project."

She thinks about what Will said for a moment and nods.

"Ya, it'ss like the American Empire back home, so jacked up in paranoia they can't see they are overboard. IF we kicked down the doors, it might just delay it, we need to go digging and see about along the lines of trying to force change."

This insight from Will is totally unexpected...

Priscilla has posed:
    Well, Priscilla can't help the element of surprise there. Rather have and not want then want and not have, et cetera, et cetera. She is more concerned with being thankful that no contrived nonsense conspired to make any of this arbitrarily difficult to back up. The Bation hadn't magically deleted any files or blanked any photos, and so it seems as Zulf and the Kid peruse her collection, that there is still a solid chance of saving this place yet.

    "It is unfortunately equally plausible that if shown all of this, they wouldst instead rather target lady Zia's father, and redouble their efforts to maketh certain it is used precisely to their directions. The Calamity was no /mistake/, it was deliberately mis-aimed." Sadly, Priscilla has to be the bearer of bad news on this one. "To go straight to the Mancers themselves with our combined collective truth outright wouldst most likely maketh things only more complicated and difficult than they art. Further, as it wouldst standeth, we hath no true conception of the weapon's shape, location, mechanism, or the likelihood of causing a Calamity of our own by blindly breaking it. A mass campaign of any sort is folly until we hath at least learned of its status, how near it is to completion, and precision whom art its designers."

The Kid has posed:
    Zulf looks to Rory, and thinks for a long moment. "That would be the head of the Mancers. Not him," He gestures at the photo of Rucks. "But I do recognize him as a Mancer. The head's name is... Trif, I believe." Kid also looks at Rucks' photo, and rubs his chin. "Seen him 'round the Walls a few times, but dunno who he is."

    Everyone seems on board with trying to settle it peaceably. Some advocate fighting 'psychic constructs,' others want to spread the word and protest. Priscilla wants to gather information first, something that makes Zia nod. "My dad would know. The hard part would be getting him to talk on one of those rare times he comes home..." She lets out a tiny sigh. "I might need your help with him," she says to Flamel.

    "The Mancers ain't dumb. If a lot of people yell, they'll hear it. But I dunno 'bout lyin' to people to make 'em yell," Kid says to Will. "Folks don't want another war. Reckon the Ura don't want one neither. If all these pages are right, the thing was to make sure another war couldn't happen. Just gotta show no one wants one."

    "Well I reckon it's true that no one wants another war," says a voice behind Priscilla. "But why do y'all think one might happen? Should everyone look through the invisible First, they would see a man standing behind her. He wears a wide-brimmed had and a dusty trenchcoat over black leather armor. Pinned to his chest is a Marshal's Badge, like the one the Kid used to tote around. Slung across his back is a massive Musket, also like the one the Kid used. His face has the color and texture of leather, and an impressive, curled salt-and-pepper mustache sits on his lip. His eyes are concealed by the brim of his hat as he tips it. "Howdy. Name's Dion, Second Marshal. The Gravers asked me to keep tabs on you lot."

    His hands slide into his pockets. Zia looks very worried, as does Zulf. Kid just seems baffled. "So, you folks mind explaining what y'all are doin'?"

Alexis has posed:
As weird as it may be, Alexis agrees with Priscilla. "The oldy-timey speaking lady is right." She jabs a thumb in Pris's direction to clarify who she's speaking about since she's not exactly visible at the moment. "We need more info on how things work around here before trying to change it." Sounds a little odd coming from a Trainer, who are fairly infamous for poking curious noses in things they probably shouldn't of without better awareness.

Then again, most average Trainers don't have Multiverse experience under their belt to the level Alexis does.

It's almost like trying to prove the point that now is one the local law enforcement shows up. "Huh. No surprise at that." She tries to brush the Marshal's entrance into the scenerio casually as she can without the room to lean against a wall and look relaxed. "Bunch of offworlders gathering in one spot with locals and other nationals, probably looks a bit odd." She just accepts that it is the sort of thing that would draw a bit of attention and remains calm so it doesn't perk too much suspicion. 'Cops' tend to respond best when given acknowledgement.

But how much of the conversation did he overhear? That's a question they can't really answer...

William Pauwel has posed:
"I'm not suggesting we lie about it," Will answers the Kid's concerns with an understanding nod. "But that's always the danger of havin' a weapon like this one, ain't it? When you have the power to destroy the world on call and the firin' mechanism is at the hands of one person, then there's always the risk of somethin' awful happening. But yer right, we don't want to deceive anyone in this."

Priscilla's right, they need to gather more information.


After they deal with this interruption.

Will stares for a moment through the invisible form of the First of the Concord. He finds a dangerous looking man with a fabulous looking moustache staring back at him. The gunslinger smiles a disarming grin and waves a mechanical arm down at the lawman's way. "Oh, nothin' much officer. We were jus' talkin' about savin' the world is all."

Priscilla has posed:
    The experience of everyone staring directly through her is hardly new to Priscilla --she's probably more used to that than people looking directly /at/ her still-- but the sense of slow, collective "uh oh" that goes with it is new, and it's solely the fact that she is transparent to the Marshal as well that prevents the gradual, hesitant, guilty turn-around being the traditional cherry on the cake of that whole routine.

    The man doesn't seem to be /overtly/ threatening, so trying to kill him would be a bit of an overreaction. Getting violent in general, even for the sake of disarming and interrogation, would also be a bit much for an officer of the law making no hostile gestures. He hasn't demanded or ordered anything out of the group, and has been ostensibly open about his intentions so far. There is no reason for Priscilla to take immediate, decisive action on a police officer doing his job without a clue of what's going on, but it makes her uneasy anyways. Especially that someone had asked him to 'keep tabs' on the rest."

    So, she doesn't de-stealth. She doesn't pull out her card and demand him to respect her authoritah. She actually stays completely hidden, and actually 100% directly in the way, still as a statue. Her incredibly awkward position is advantageous in a sense. If he wants to push forward to nab somebody, he'll run into her. If he draws a weapon and she can't get it in time, he'll hit her instead of someone more fragile like Zia. Instead, she merely sends in silence <<I thought thou were followed not?>> back to Zulf by proxy.

Flamel Parsons (1094) has posed:
    "Oh, I'm always happy to help! Technically, I have a lot more legal standing to go deeper into his mind if you guide me. Legally speaking, I mean." Parsons says, nodding to Zia eagerly. And then he looks out through Priscilla, and... Waves, happily. He's guarded, but still being as friendly as he can be. Which is pretty damn friendly. "Hi there, Dion! I'm Special Agent Flamel Parsons of the Psychonauts Multiversal Operations Bureau." He flashes the brain-logo badge in a way that somehow seems more like it's his equivalent of tipping his hat.

    "I can't give you all the details, because we're still figuring out who's involved or not involved, but I'm happy to tell you as much as I can and anything you need to know!" Parsons is guarded but there's no reason that has to mean he's unfriendly. "I'm here because I've gotten direct confirmation of a psychohazard cascade that could result in a pretty awful upheaval that could put lives at risk, or maybe even spark off some major conflict." He tilts his head, and gently tries to probe for a more generalized psychological state, to see if he feels Hostile Feelings or Helpful Feelings. It's just a light poke into the outer psyche, so it's both a stealthy action and one that might get deceived with some thought-masking if Dion's got expertise in deception. "I'd hate to step on any toes and cause problems when we're here to prevent them, though, so we're making sure we have all the warrants and probable cause for everything. What all do you need to know?"

    It probably doesn't help that Parsons was JUST in the middle of using the same mannerism towards Zulf, Zia, and The Kid. Technically everything he said was truth, but there sure is a lot of omission there.

Rory White (673) has posed:
    Rory was so busy focusing on her thoughts and analyzing what ifs based on the information that Zulf just gave her that this Dion is able to sneak up past her customary Saucer and the insistent attention-blaring warnings of her Muse!

    The unfamiliar voice jolts her from her processings... and so the bluenette turns to look (through Priscilla) at the man who's come to basically... interrogate them?

    She looks bewilderedly at the man. The look sharpens as she rapidly examines his attire.

    "Second Marshal? By that, are you the second of the Marshals as a whole, Mr. Dion? If so, you might be exactly the kind of man who's help we'll need. This city is in grave danger, and the threat comes from within. A disastrous conspiracy. An investigation is needed and we have plenty of evidence to warrant it starting A.S.A.P.!"

    She seems to respond well to having anyone who seems to be an actual authority on the scene.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Kotone Yamakawa thinks there's still one more person ot bring up, she could bring up her memories of the clamity if needed but that's going to be slow and could be considerefake. She pauses at another voice and her blood runs cold, they have been founded out at this point she turns back to see a man behind them a Marshal? Okay that's not a Mancer but she's nowq not sure what to say here she's mentally a deer in the headlights for a moment here.

Alexis is quicker on the uptake, getting the group up to a good start. Famel goes full government spook on the side of saving the world and isn't really lying if you know what's going on here.

"Afternoon officer, and can't fault you for taking notice of us. My friend her's right we been looking into something that's rather delicate along those lines..."

The Kid has posed:
    "'ppreciate the understandin' miss," Dion says to Alexis with another hat tip. "Y'all got a lot of people on-edge at the Guild meetin'. Some folks wanted to sic the Gravers right on ya. Lucky for y'all, my boss got 'em convinced to send me along. So gimmie somethin' that'll save ya a blade to the throat." Zulf only offers a frantic shrug at Priscilla's direction.

    And so, everyone begins talking. Will talks about 'saving the world.' "Gonna need more than that, friend," Dion says with a slight smirk in his voice. Looking to Flamel, he raises an eyebrow. "Lotta words I don't get, fella. The impression the Psychonaut gets from his light poke is sincerity. He's being up-front right now, with no hint of a hidden agenda.

    He looks to Rory and nods. "Right on the mark Missy. This kinda thing is unusual, so it was left to me, rather than a patrolman. Ain't y'all lucky? Now, iffn y'all think something so bad is 'bout to happen, give it to me straight. Don't care how delicate ya think ya need to be. Not to mention, I heard nine voices but count eight heads. Whoever's hidin', show yaself. My good graces are ya best bet."


William Pauwel has posed:

Here we go, then.

"Sorry, felt like it was an appropriate moment fer a neat and punchy quip. Guess I was a little off the mark," Will laughs and moves as if he's about to scratch his head, and then thinks better of it because of his ROBOT ARMS. "Name's Will Pauwel, it's a pleasure mister Dion. I'd shake yer hand, but I just got mine replaced after my last foray and I ain't too used to these lumps o' metal just yet."

"So, I wasn't kiddin' when I said we were tryin' to save the world. What'd you say if we told y'all that we were responsible fer puttin' this city back together, but that what tore it apart in th' first place might be on its way again? Probably call us crazy, huh?"

"It's the truth, though. Iff'n we don't get this taken care of, all of Caelondia might be gone in the next little while. 'Xcept for the ripplin' walls, nothing much will be left. Everythin'll be tossed into the sky. No survivors, except for not even a dozen people." Will shrugs, "And what's responsible is a weapon built in the city, by the city. I've seen first hand what that technology can do. It ain't pretty, Mister Dion. It's the kind of thing what turns folks to dust."

Alexis has posed:
"Guess we've raised a few eyebrows even with trying to not stirr the pot too much." Alexis tucks a hand back into the pockets of her hoodie to keep herself from getting figity again in the tight quarters of the booths.

The other goes to give Zia's shoulder a light squeeze of reassurance. The Marshal's arrival is a bit of a kink in the works but they might be able to turn it to their favor. She's seen them work their way through weirder, harder problems after all.

Then turns her attention back to Dion. "Forgive us if some of our recent activity has seemed like subtefuge. We've been trying to investigate this scenerio farther and find out what's really going on before pushing any evidence or accusations out there... I imagine a man of your position can probably see how raising a premature stir and causing undo panic would be determental to the situation."

Flamel Parsons (1094) has posed:
    Parsons peers and looks almost like he's physically examining Dion, when in actuality it's a very short mental examination. Then he says, "Oh, sure!" He clasps his hands together and says, "We've got very firm reason to believe that a cascade of various psychohazardous social arrangements and conflict states is going to result in a disaster that breaks up most of Caelondia and hurts a whole lot of people. We've got some confirmation due to non-subjective temporal perception that you're looking at a situation where the combined intense psionic buildups of energies around generalized national tension, localized family love, pressure-mismanaged severe depression, and at least a few cases of safety deregulation all combine badly into the psychological equivalent of a time bomb, in a place where it's likely to go off pretty destructively for Caelondia."

    As he says this, he produces several... Warrants, actually. It looks like he did sort of go through due process of a kind. They're some fairly extensive documentation he's got, pulled from his encounter with Zulf's mind (anonymized for privacy) and from study of the Calamity during the later times. "We know that there's one way it might go off, which is this very precise arrangement of specific people and motivations, but I'm still thinking myself that there might be some broader issues at play here. Miserable people -- on either side of a fight, really -- tend to make bad choices, and bad choices right next to weapons of mass destruction are pretty dangerous! I think that what you're dealing with is dangerously unhappy people, you know? Did you notice people kind of escalating tension recently? Being more irritable and stressed?" He certainly sounded like it, so this might partially be a bit of cold reading on Flamel's part.

    "We're just looking to make sure nobody gets hurt, accused of anything, blamed of anything they're not technically responsible for yet, all that sort of stuff, but mostly to make sure Caelondia doesn't have a major, highly-lethal disaster as the result of a huge psychological explosion." Priscilla's a bit in the way, but presumably the moment she demonstrates being, uh, not, Parsons can foist his documentation at Dion.

    He's still refusing to name Zia's dad, or to blame the Mancers directly; he's making a point of trying to avoid making this a political issue, and he's taking the role of some kind of... Vague yet not-menacing workplace productivity consultant, where the lack of productivity might mean the end of the world. He needs to make sure his secret cabal of conspirators doesn't get much negativity in its first week!

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Kotone Yamakawa seems to get some idea of what's up here and relaxes a little bitm, and will talks about saving the world and she gets why Dion needs to know more. He's a cop he can't just take their words for it, he'd be lax in his job and it seems they got one of the good ones. She takes a deep breath as he askes for the striaght story.

"It's pretty much that, the stage has been reset but if nothing is done it will play out the same. I seen a lot of people suffer for this shot. We're trying to dig into it to keep the city from falling to ruin again, becuse if we do nothing it will all play out as it did before."

Rory White (673) has posed:
    "I'm afraid the arrangement is confusing, Marshal. It involves unbelievable things like time travel. In a sense, we're from a future that we're hoping to avert. I don't expect you to take my word for it though. I recorded the entire experience from detecting the devastation in the first place up to activating the device that brought everything back to this point in time--"

    She's trying to explain, but looking at Flamel a moment after that, she wonders if her approach is maybe wrong. Some might blink, but she just stares in an unnerving way for a few seconds. Then is right back on the issue with Dion!

    "... I agree that number nine should show herself if we're going to earn this man's trust. Working within the law is preferable to not. Alexis's point is accurate."

Priscilla has posed:
    Well, the headcount thing is legit. Priscilla could easily have someone else cover for her having spoken earlier, but the more she listens to everyone else drop the Multiversal spaghetti, getting all the way into time travel and world-destroying disasters and . . . Flamel being Flamel, the more Priscilla feels that this could be summarized in a way that is far more grippable for poor Dion, and far more likely to be something that he feels motivated to do something about.

    Of course she doesn't just poof into being a foot away from his face, like a complete jerk. She makes time to do one of those you-got-me approaches from behind, so that he has the luxury of turning around at the sound of her voice. What she says to him is pretty simple. It is also both completely honest, and something that a Marshal should care about.

    "Well met then, Marshal, and mine apologies for the circuitous and untoward way these events hath progressed. If that which those young ones art eager to accost thine ears with is something thou, perhaps rightfully, findeth difficult to follow, pray, forgiveth their excitement. The dry reality of the situation is thus: between us, we hath highly compelling evidence to suggesteth the existence of a conspiracy within the guild of Mancers, written on political lines, which threatens the stability and welfare of Caelondia and its people as a whole. As we art aware of the position of the Mancers, such a conspiracy wouldst not be something best blurted aloud for anyone to hear. It is something that necessitates most careful research, investigation, and verification before any action is taken upon the presumption that it is all truth."

The Kid has posed:
    Dion is getting bombarded right now, but he seems prepared. Out comes a notebook that he scribbles on at high speeds. He makes quick summaries of the warrants that Flamel provides, and jots down what everyone has to say on a different page. Once it's all done, he begins flipping through it all.

    "So if I'm understandin' right," he begins. "Y'all come from the future or somethin', where Caelondia got all chewed up, and ya want to keep it from happenin'. You're all bein' real careful not to name names, but because y'all keep sneakin' around, I gotta assume it's someone in charge that does it. Am I wrong?" He's clearly a sharp man; one does not get high in what amounts to local law enforcement if you can't connect dots, it seems.

    Priscilla appears behind him, making him turn and begin taking her statement. "Mancers... should've known. That makes sense then." He puts the pen and pad away, and looks among the nine. "What you're tellin' me is too bizarre to be a lie. But I dunno if I can buy it yet. So I just got a few things to ask."

    He points at the Kid, Zia, and Zulf. "Why you involvin' these three. My thinkin' is that they were survivors, but if you have to explain stuff to 'em, what good are they. Do you want 'em back after all this is over?" Next, he points to every Elite. "Also, what're y'all gettin' out of this? Why go to all the trouble? Give me satisfyin' answers, and I'll try and cover for y'all."

Flamel Parsons (1094) has posed:
    "Oh, see, we're not actually sure that someone in charge did it -- or at least, that they meant to. I mean, we're here to make sure this all stops, but I'm not a precrime division." Parsons says, sort of shaking his head and waving his hands. "Those guys are assholes. Wavy computer arm nonsense. But we're worried that if things get too... Well, well-known, it'll all turn into a mess that everyone will hear, and then everyone will /stress out/ about it, and it'll accelerate people making problems for each other. Could be a splinter of the Mancers for all I know!"

    Then he looks at the pointing finger as if Dion just jabbed a snake in their direction instead of a hand. "...Huh?" He looks back to Dion and makes a sort of shrug-like helpless gesture. "They're dependable? I don't really know what else to say. The Kid was fantastic to work with, great source of calm in a really stressed-out chaotic sort of time, and always willing to put his life on the line for the people he was working with and the cause he was working for. Zulf had his issues, but he turned out having great insight and he kept our secrets even in the worst, most awful, dire sorts of times. They're just really reliable. That's what good they are. You can't find that sort of grit just looking for some rank or some political seat."

    Parsons doesn't usually cut loose with that sort of honesty, really, but right now he gets the feeling that this quite authentic assessment of how he feels about Zulf and The Kid, and the value Parsons places in their reliability and loyalty... of a sort... will be something that a man like Dion can appreciate. "There's one more we need to talk to, too. A man by the name of Rucks."

Alexis has posed:
"We don't know how high or how deep it runs. It could only be a few or it could be the whole group. Part of the reason we're trying to get better info first." By this point Alexis doesn't see a reason to be dodgy with the Marshall. He might be their best bet at getting some help without going to higher authorities before they're prepared.

At that's finally something Alexis can actually answer. "The process, for lack of a better word, that fixed things was more of a reversion. Which included memories. So none of the survivors remember what happened, except her," nods her head to Zia, "because she was out of its range when it happened. By her own choice, before anyone gets any ideas of kidnapping or what not." Just to cover all the basis.

The last question just gets a shrug out of her at first. "Some of us just have a knack for getting pulled into these situations and trying to set them right." Par for the course for Trainers. She does grimace a bit after that though. "Seriously though, if you knew, and believed, half the things we went through helping the survivors be able to set things right again, you'd understand in a heartbeat why we'd go the extra mile to try and prevent it from happening again... over.. over again... oi I hate trying to explain temporal shenanigans..."

Alexis shakes her head a little. "Okay, lemme try putting this way. I've seen it happen, even just back in my own world, what happens when certain people or extremist idealists get too much of the power for themselves. Doesn't matter if it's super weapons or awakening eldiritch embodiments of primal forces. It -never- works out."

Priscilla has posed:
    It seems that if the Gravers are their enemy, they'd have chosen a very poor cat's pawn to engage with. Or a very, very good one. Priscilla isn't entirely sure, but if Flamel isn't detecting any signs of deception (she'd assume he'd say something if he did), then she will lean on the outcome that involves this old Marshal being the man for the job for some combination of experience, patience, and suspicion, rather than good acting.

    "In a sense." she says to Dion. "Lady Zia is very much a refugee returned, but the others sought to return to their old lives, and didst entrusteth their futures to the mercies of such a plan's successes and failures. It is unfortunate that they must be made to understandth once again, but it was a difficulty all here kneweth and didst accept, and . . ." She pauses to get out the ID card, then show it to the Marshal, displaying the Kid's sleepless, grizzled, haunted and hung-over face, over a year older than he is now. "I cannot speaketh truth in saying that I wouldst begrudge either of them wishing to forget."

    What does she get out of it? "It is less a matter of personal gain, and more one of personal honour. That young man is a respected ally and contact of mine, with mine blessings upon his work. Whilst there is obvious gain in him hailing from a world complete rather than dead, what is more important is that I hath made oaths that I shalt see fulfilled, and that he is owed exactly what he hast earned. To consider his amnesia a convenience and renege upon what he is owed wouldst be unacceptable. Whilst I wouldst dearly wish to see him return at the end of this, such his his choice, and not his obligation."

William Pauwel has posed:
"Ahahaha, y'all talk like the Mancers've caused this sort of trouble before," Will chuckles an awkward laugh. Then he goes cold silent and stares for a moment, "They... they haven't, right? There's not some kind've weird regular apocalypse scenario that pops up here from time to time, is there?"


N-no, that'd be ridiculous.

"Well uh," he sniffs, glancing at Alexis, "She's got the right of it, there. Basically we pushed a big ol' reset button that flipped everything back to the way it was 'fore the Calamity. That included these two--" Will gestures over at Zulf and the Kid with a creak of shifting steel. "As for yer other question..."

The cowpoke takes a moment to think, then shrugs. "Would y' believe that it's 'cause I promised to? Besides that, The Kid's a friend and we've been through a few scrapes together, so I owe it to him. On top of that, the whole situation reminds me way too much of home."

"Back where I'm from, the world got blown to bits by a calamity, too. We're pickin' up the pieces, but it's slow goin'," Will explains. "So I'd like to prevent the same from happenin' here too, if at all possible. Gotta make sure history don't just repeat itself, you know?"

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Dion gets blasted but he seems ready she watches him make notesm she listens for a moment as Dion relays thing. "That is correct." AS the Mancer come up there's no denying it. She looks to the cop for a moment and she thinks for a moment.

"Not asking you to buy is Marshal I'd be worried if you did out of the gate."

She is relaxed as she can be like this. "I'd trust all three of them with my life I can tell you that."

She means it too, she really does and there seem to be hints.

"We don't wish to end up tipping off the wrong folks and having things end up like they were or end up even worse."

Rory White (673) has posed:
    "The reason is largely because... turning everything back was their idea, and they knew Caelondia's social structure far better than us. Because... yes. The problem is rooted in said structure. The superweapon is a Mancer project. And it is probably already, or very close, to being ready to use. I am presently worried that trying to force a shutdown violently - or, even, at all - will trigger some extremist to use it regardless of consequences." Rory states firmly.

    "Ordinarily I am not in favor of clanedestine operations, but with an entire city at stake, I would very much like to disable, neutralize, or otherwise secure the weapon from the Mancers before they even hear of an investigation, as it sounds as though they are doing this without anyone's knowledge or direction."

    Rory then pauses for several long seconds at this... and shakes her head.

    "... I will be honest and say that, at first, I'd thought not rewinding time would be the better choice. Something is direly wrong when a civilization takes a turn like this. It happened to mine. ... But, what I 'get' out of it... very little besides knowing a crisis was averted. My whole purpose for existing was to watch over people and prevent problems. This wasn't what my creators had in mind, but... having been dragged into it this far, I cannot in good conscience abandon it."

The Kid has posed:
    Dion does not write any of this down. He just listens, and nods. "Needed some allies on the inside, and ya hoped to get 'em back. Fair. I'm glad you're letting 'em decide though. If ya had tried to force it..." he leaves that hanging. "All different reasons too. Oaths, similar experiences... I dunno if I had bought it iffn' y'all said it was outta the goodness of your heart. I've heard stories of your 'Concord," he says, looking to Priscilla. "All right, here's the deal. I'll cook up some line of bull to cover for this talk, but there are eyes on all of ya, all the time. Don't even think you've gone unfollowed. Once ya got some proof, bring it to me at Cinderbrick Fort an' I can help ya. Now... y'all have an wonderful evenin'." And with that, Dion strides off, whistling merrily,

    Kid looks a bit abashed by all the praise that got heaped on him. "I need ta be in my bunk. 'scuse me..." he mutters, wriggling his way out of the crush. He pauses at Priscilla, and regards that ID for a long moment before taking it. "I'm still not sure, but lemme hold on to this 'till I make a decision." And with that, he too vanishes into the night.

    Zulf is the next to leave, still looking a bit aggrieved. "If we are to speak wiht your father, that is something I can help with. Ura to Ura," he says to Zia, before giving everyone a firm nod. He parts without another word.

    Zia remains, looking uncertain. "I'll try and get my dad to come home... but I'm worried now. If we're aiming to destabilize the Mancers, they might get in trouble for making the weapon... what about Rucks? Are we just going to write him off? I can't think of a way to get to him..." With a heavy look on her face, she starts to head home.

Alexis has posed:
There's just a little 'huh' from Alexis when Dion notes that they know about outside-of-their-world things like the Concord. News travels quickly considering this world hasn't been whole for very long. But even if Priscilla's interests aren't entirely alturistic, an unbroken world is still of more use to the Concord, so... well, she's not in a faction any more, Alexis doesn't have to care one way or another, right?

"You know darn well we're not gonna throw Rucks to the Mightyen--err, to the wolves." Alexis had to stop herself from making a Pokemon anology no one else would understand. "But that's an issue we need to dig in a bit deeper before we can settle." Hopefully that can reassure Zia a little.

After all the 'locals' are gone she mmms softly, leaning against a wall now that there's more space available. "Y'know. Maybe we should spread our efforts out a little. Stop showing up in a big suspicious group like this. Other people that are watching," she nods her head in the direction Dion left, "are probably going to be less agreeable."

William Pauwel has posed:
'Concord' huh? Will frowns but says nothing. If he thinks that they're all part of the Concord, well. That's not exactly accurate, but he doesn't need to correct the guy right now either. "Appreciate it, pardner. We'll be in touch. You take care, hear?"

Dion leaves. Will turns to the others as the trio of Caelondians take their leave. "I ain't advocatin' leavin' Rucks out of this. In fact, it'd be best if we could meet with 'im and let the man know. He might be able to pull some strings and buy us more time."

Alexis makes a point of splitting forces. Will nods in agreement, "I hear that. It'd be easier to cover more ground that way, too. We'll just need to keep in regular contact to make sure none of us get jumped by some crazy assassin with a spear or something. I'll head over and help Zia and Zulf out, I think. They'll need someone watchin' their back, s'pecially considerin' her dad's probably bein' tailed too."

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Kotone Yamakawa looks over to Zia as 3everything settls down and people depart. "I would never write Rucks off." There is a beat for a moment at what Alexis says and she listens to the venrable elite for a moment. "Your right we should split up, it was a miracle it was Dion who found us." She looks to WIlliam for a moment. "So what your saying concord Diplomatic visit to Caledonia? That might draw Rucks to such an event."