4759/Urban Mythos

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Urban Mythos
Date of Scene: 07 November 2016
Location: The Secret World <TSW>
Synopsis: ...or, A Talk With The Bogeyman. TSW Halloween 2016, final(?) part.
Cast of Characters: Wuyin Tsai, Staren, 518, 481, Inga, 1028, 513, Kotone Yamakawa

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
The flows seem to be leading away from the Ferris Wheel. Given that's where they all seem to be coming from... well, maybe it's worth investigating after all.

The Ferris Wheel is huge, looming high over the hills and rocky ridges that surround it. The walkway up to the wheel itself has a chainlink fence running parallel, to keep would-be riders in some semblance of a line. There's no gate, but there are railing on the edges to keep people from casually cutting near the control booth. It's presently off, and still.

The cars themselves are round, with a windowed door on either side and enough space for two people to sit side by side if they get very familiar and opposite another potential pair in any given car. With the way it's arranged, one car can be boarded at a time, unless you feel like being superhuman and jumping up to some. They're even in different colors! Blue, green, red...

...though the last one might be because of the hole in the sky.

There's a rip above the wheel. It looks like a wound, a red, writhing tear hanging in the air. It stands out clearly, even on this perpetually-foggy night, casting its baleful glow down on the ride. The topmost car on the wheel disappears into it, swallowed up by the horizontal portal.

That is definitely where everything's flowing from... but the magically-attuned will feel the presence of a /third/ line that comes /back/, straight up the middle of the Park. It's flowing right back into it in a continuous loop. Telling whether it's different or not might involve dipping one's metaphysical toe in, and that may not be the best decision anyone's ever made, either.

Staren has posed:
    As they make their way to the Ferris wheel, Staren asks Inga, "Can you sense anything yet?" When he gets close, there's no time to analyze the design of the cars (best not to think of that, anyway -- he /has/ gone on a date an an amusement park, and wouldn't want to taint the memory) because--

    "Well, /that/ can't be good." He looks up at the hole in the sky, then turns to Inga and Riva. "Have you ever seen anything like that before?"

    Also, he scans to check if there is indeed any spatial warping or dimentional disturbance around the rift, just to check if it is indeed what it looks like or if it's just a strange visual side effect of too much local magic in one place.

    One can hope, right?

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    Team B(umblefuck) had come straight from the Bumper Cars, having only a minute or two of delay between them and the walk up (before) and the walk up (after) towards the Ferris Wheel. They did not think to send their INNOCENT CHILD who is ALSO BLEEDING (did you notice? Yuuki did!) very slightly off to safety, because it was FOGGY and it would TAKE A WHILE.

    And that's why Yuuki (and Shielder, and Kotone) were standing there when Team A got there, looking up.

    "I feel like we've found a small snag." the Totally Normal Girl mumbles, before glancing back, and then up, and then stepping up to the railing. "I do not think this is going to be safe to ride. Kotone, could you bring the child back to town? I think you know the way...?"

    And that's why Kotone is Miss Appearing Later In This Episode! Responsible Ideas About the Safety of Children!

    "Do we just... climb up?"

Kirika (481) has posed:
    Kirika, dusting herself off from THAT INCIDENT THE OTHER DAY, looks more than a bit sheepish. Hard to top being kicked out of the first round of fighting just because you were clumsy, that's for sure. She senses the flow of energy going into the hole in the sky, but the portal is more or less the biggest threat on its own.

    "Do you think the energy goes to wherever that portal leads?" She wonders, before she nods to Yuuki. "I can make the climb fine, yes."

Inga has posed:
Inga has fully recovered from her run in with a deadly fireball, the only evidence of such is her clothing, which is burnt around the edges and looking a little ragged. Inga never wears her good clothes to Solomon Island, and it should be reasonably obvious why.

Inga sighs heavily as she looks up and sees--well, pretty much what she expected. She' suspected something Nasty had crossed over here from the other side, and that this was where it had come from.

Shaking her head, she walks around a little, leaning on her staff and examining things before, with another sigh, she pulls out her knife and pricks her finger, drawing a quick rune upon her brow as she chants the words of a spell to see into the spirit world.

Pupils wide and dark, Inga really Looks this time, studying the lines of flowing energy. "Interesting..." she comments, reaching to her belt to brush agains the finger bones talisman she has hanging there, then another touch and a word of prayer to the hammer pendant around her neck.

"I believe, if we want to find the thing behind this we must ride this...wheel...into the...tear," she says, pointing upward. "The energy is flowing from here in two paths to the haunted house....but then there is another line of energy flowing back from the haunted house to this location," she informs them, gazing upward into the red wound in the sky.

Shielder (1028) has posed:
    Mashu is with Yuuki when she arrives, of course! Wearing armor and hauling a giant shield around, certainly not the clothes everyone else saw her stride in. She's also not stuttering anymore, and he demeanor seems a lot stiffer, but confident.

    Glancing up at the portal, she ponders the same thing Yuuki does. "There's nothing STOPPING us from just climbing up or riding the wheel, yeah... and I don't see anything else to do. Closing the portal's an idea, but then we wouldn't know what happened. And there's still at least one child missing, maybe more. We owe it to them to check inside first."

Finna (513) has posed:
Pitter-patter go Finna's feet as the little fox trots across the pavemement, homing in on the Ferris Wheel. On reaching it her eyes are drawn upwards and that's where the fox bares her teeth to the world, gaping. The little creature whines most unhappily.

    "Entering that... bad idea. Very bad idea!"

Staren has posed:
    Staren sighs when Inga says they need to go in. "Really? I was hoping it wouldn't come to that..." He takes a moment to download everything from his armor's cameras into a drone and send it flying back to Agartha and the warpgate. If he doesn't come back, the people he's chosen to decide when to restore him from backup -- his parents, Morg, Twilight, and Ainsley (oops, he forgot to tell Ainsley he added her to that list, so, she could be in for a shocking phone call) -- will know what happened and be able to decide how long to wait. (Of /course/ he has a Suicide Mission Protocol.)

    "You said it." he replies to Finna. "But we may not have a choice." He approaches the base of the ferris wheel.

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    >Enter the hell portal

    Yuuki seems thoughtful.

    >ride the ferris wheel to enter the hell portal. "Oh! In that case..."

    The totally normal girl goes right for the first cab available. "Mashu, you can sit with me if you like. I guess I'll get my wish after all!"

    A reminder: This entire thing for Yuuki was TOTALLY because she wanted to ride the ferris wheel. We have come Full Circle.

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
Staren's scanners confirm the presence of dimensional energy. Definitely a portal. One-way? Well, who knows?

The lights on the Ferris Wheel all come on at once, bulbs buzzing and then blazing with luminescence. Tinny music gets piped in from little speakers by the line. It's slowed and distorted. It sounds like there's children singing.

    "Three little ducks
    went out one day,
    over the hill and far away.
    Mother duck said,
    'Quack, quack, quack, quack!'
    But none of the little ducks came back." o/`

Someone is suddenly standing in the control booth: a figure in a chipmunk costume, a mascot character staring at you with beady black eyes from behind the glass, a red glow glinting off them from the portal. It has chubby cheeks, a big grin permanently plastered on its face, and a fuzzy belly with the sun-and-rainbow logo of the park put on it in prominence... and then splashed with long-dried blood. Lots of it.

Chad the Chipmunk looks like he's going to help you ride the Ferris Wheel. Obviously this is only a sign of the good that can come from going up into that rift.

Inga has posed:
Inga looks sidelong to Staren. She smiles. "I never do seem to have good news, do I?" she responds.

Inga takes a step back when Chad appears, eyes wide. She blinks at Yuuki getting on the ferris wheel, shaking her head almost involuntarily. Inga is saying a big NOPE to that. She's willing to go into the portal, but she's significally less welling to get into the deathtrap she is sure the ferris wheel is. Especially if its being opporated by THAT.

To Staren, again. "Might I ah...have a lift? I have no desire to ride that /thing/" she asks.


Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    A butterfly, elsewhere, earlier, settles on some RIDE TICKETS. They are dirty, probably bloody, and potentially even USED.

    And the butterfly sure is weird, and kind of more like 'the idea of a butterfly', wispy and strange.

    But who would evenr need ride tickets in THIS park?

    With shielder in tow, WHETHER SHE WANTS TO OR NOT, Yuuki tromps right up to Chad the Chipmunk, producing (where the hell did she get them) two TICKETS. They are BLOODY, and DIRTY, and POTENTIALLY USED. "Two going up, please." She holds out the tickets, and then... Heads right into the ride.

    There's something brisque about her whole interaction with Chad, like she sort of wants to be done with him. Her tug on Shielder is more forceful than it has been. Surely Yuuki isn't offput by Chad?

    Chad is Helping!

Kirika (481) has posed:
    Kirika meanwhile has no fear of such a thing, even if the ferris wheel is a bit menacing with a big hell portal floating atop of it. She narrows her eyes, snubbing Chad the Chipmunk as she moves past the booth.

    She will take her place in a cabin on the ferris wheel, calmly and swiftly leaping aboard. There is no time for frivolity, the team has work to do tonight!

    As she waits aboard the wheel, she will draw her sword...and calmly sharpen it with a glowing whetstone.

Shielder (1028) has posed:
    Mashu has no objections and rides with Yuuki.



There is basically nothing else to say.

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    It is a good thing that Shielder and Yuuki are in the same car, and UNCOMFORTABLY COMFORTABLE sitting next to each other, closely. Because there's no more room in their car.

    The shield is on the other side. How romantic. True love.

    And like at least a minute of shoving.

Staren has posed:
    Staren looks at Inga. "Listening to bad news is how we avoid hearing much worse news later." He too steps back from the ferris wheel when it turns on, and tries to scan Chad for lifesigns. Is that someone wearing a costume? Does it matter, as long as they get into the rift? "Sure."

    Staren lifts her up in a princess carry easily with the armor's strength, then manifests those translucent orange stylized wings, buzzing like an insect's as he flies upward, keeping close to the wheel as if he expects the portal will try to push him away and he'll need to brace himself or catch on the structure of the wheel.

Finna (513) has posed:
Yuuki being seemingly airheaded while Inga and Staren has things under their own bit of warps is enough to motivate Finna to leap over to the car that Yuuki has dragged Shielder off to. But she leaps up ATOP of Yuuki's chosen ferris wheel car, riding atop the roof and making long, low, unhappy croons the whole time. An eerie serenade from seemingly nowhere, from Yuuki's perspective. Probably.

    The fox is unhappy, and especially so after getting a look at the parks Mascot who's appeared from nowhere.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Where has Kotone gone? She's gone to get the girl that Shielder, she and Yuuki had managed to get, they have some allies here and she knows where to get the girl at least to a generally safe place. Which she's going to get the girl too, with her motorcycle it wouldn't be too long to reach the police station and dodge the various trouble some things on the road. She gives her helmet to the girl too as they drive off.

She will reach the Police Station shortly and ask Moose to watch the girl until she got back telling him there were more in trouble it's just see and some friends had managed to rescue this child already. She does her best to comfort the girl and then she'll get on her bike and take off at a far more breakneck speed to get back to the park.

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
Chad takes the tickets wordlessly, and operates the control panel without looking. He's staring at you the whole time. Still, he doesn't stop entry, either...

The ride on the Ferris Wheel is surprisingly smooth. The view as riders ascend is actually pretty nice: the island looks less... awful, from above. The fog is still ever-present, of course -- you can't get away from that -- but being high up makes problems seem so distant... unless they're swirling hell-portals.

Entering the portal feels sort of like jumping into a tub of icewater. The sensation is intense for the instant you pass through it, everything turning alarmingly red for a span of seconds. It clears up, though, and everything here seems... brighter. More vibrant. The crushing miasma of the Park and the Fog don't seem to have any sway here, making the world just seem nicer.

That doesn't mean it /is/ nicer, though. Entering the portal puts the group at ground-level on a dirt path, with gnarled, bare trees to either side of them. Behind them, they can see the distant shape of something whirling and tentacular, like the Octotron but made out of flesh and meat. Ahead, the path turns into a four-way intersection, the sides leading to a neat and clean version of the bumper car arena -- save with none of the bumpers on the cars -- and the mouth of the coastal cave where live swans wait to ferry you inside.

Straight ahead, though...

A field that might have been a fairground is encircled by trees and high, high chain link fence. What looks like a mausoleum stands on a rocky rise in the center, flanked by slabs of stone jutting out of the ground and seemingly pinning it in place. The sound of children laughing and crying can be heard from the darkened interior. Sitting just beyond the threshold is a mouldering old pumpkin carved into a jack-o'-lantern's face, with a red ember sitting in its mouth and burning like it was just removed from a stove-fire.

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
"I'm telling you, mate," the pumpkin says in what might be a familiar brogue to some, "this isn't /all/ my doing. Why, I might've thought to take a little off the top, but that's my right at this time of year, aye? Who're you to say otherwise?"

The man the pumpkin is addressing faces the mausoleum. From behind, you can see his black coattails and narrow, almost skeletal legs clad in well-cut trousers. He gestures with long, narrow arms, a grey hand with too-long fingers on his left and something like a fleshy grey hook jutting from his right sleeve.

"Me?" he asks. His voice is unpleasant, a rasp and a rattle like death's added to every syllable. "Who am /I/ to say? Why /I/ am the master of this place, and /you/," he lifts a cane with his left hand, black with a silver top, jabbing it at the jack-o'-lantern, "/are/ /trespassing!/"

"But why don't we consult our... guests." He turns smoothly to face the group. He smiles with teeth like broken, rotten keys on a piano, with a face that lack symmetry or life and calls to mind all the youthful nights spent wondering if the monster under the bed really /was/ going to get you. "What penalty do you think should be levied for this indiscretion, eh? You yourselves seem so intent on getting here to interrupt my works -- what would you have done to this /fool/ --"

"That's 'Jack' to the likes of you, mace-face," the pumpkin snaps.

"-- and to your fine," he tilts his head, too-tall, twisted top hat swaying, "meddling selves? As /neither/ of you belong here, you must have some interesting suggestions, mm?"

Inga has posed:
Traveling through the portal is thoroughly unpleasant no matter which manner one chooses to do it. The icy cold of it seems to seep into her bones, a shock to the senses, but nothing she cannot handle now. She'll request Staren set her down, and spends a quick moment arranging her now burned and torn clothing as she takes in the scene around them. Where /is/ this, she wonders? It is not the spirit world as she is used to.

Inga spots the pumpkin, her lips forming a small o as she recognizes who he is. Well, isn't /that/ interesting.

Inga puts her staff in front of her and straigthens, looking to the slender creature with iron in her eyes. "I suggest you return the children. We've come for them," she says, not terribly concerned with what is done with Stingy Jack just now. They knew he wasn't gone forever. Just like everything else on this bloody island, he comes back. Of course.

Inga is fairly sure this will come to a fight, and wonders if she should have just started with lightning as a greeting. Alas, but she's cautious by nature.

Staren has posed:
    Staren grunts at the sudden cold feeling. He's used to his armor shielding him from sudden environmental changes. Stupid magic...

    And they're in.... some crazy mirror world that isn't as built up, and is inhabited by flesh-creature paralells of the park's machines? He sets Inga down on the ground. "What the hell..."

    His ears perk up as he hears the children's laughter, and then sees the pumpkin, his fists clenching. "Oh /no/..."

    And then it TALKS. He jumps back.

    Questions are asked. Staren's hand rests on the drip of his pistol.

    He looks at Piano Teeth with a cold glare. "You wouldn't understand."

    Wrong gun. He reaches into his bag. "So I'm going to put this in terms you /can/ understand. You've seen what we did to your friend here." He nods to Stingy Jack. "You wanna be next? Otherwise, release the children." There's the sound of a gun being cocked, from inside the bag.

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    The ride is RAD AS HELL!!!

    Unfortunately, Yuuki seems muted by the whole thing, glancing glumly out of the window and reflecting on the awful fog, the hellish portal...

    AND THE DAMN WAILING ANIMAL ON THE ROOF! She even stands up (rocking the cab precariously!) to knock on the roof. "Please don't! Also it's unsafe up there." But mostly it's annoying, ugh.

    But then they pass through the iris of the HELLPORTAL, and... everything is better?

    That one asshole (from the Bumper Cars) is talking to a pumpkin. Alright. Yuuki can deal with this. Yuuki is ready to engage in negotiative discourse with an entity of power fo-...

    Inga beats her to it, and then Staren goes Straight Spaghetti Neo-Western with gun-cocking and threats. Yuuki winces, shaking her head (causing her long hair to swish back and forth animatedly) and glancing to Shielder. "Is this how it normally goes?"

    She has no idea that Shielder is new too, Shielder seemed In The Know.

    "When you reach your claws out beyond your den to draw in the innocent, you lose those rights to call your den sacrosanct - especially when the doors are open and inviting. Everything can work out at least neutrally for everyone, still."

Finna (513) has posed:
"/Belong./" Finna lets the word roll off her tongue whilst approaching both of the ghastly freaks. But she doesn't come TOO close... nor does she immediately jump to snarling at either one.

    The fox's form shifts, shooting upwards. In no time at all Finna's adopted her human form, brushing hair over her shoulder in the effort. Earth-style modern clothes suitable for a parkgoer's replaced her huntress leathers though - but showing some midriff - and a belt with a Glock 19 and a Smith & Wesson Model 627's fitted around her waist. She's modernized for the locale it seems!

    "Saying we don't belong but implying you do? This place wasn't always a deathtrap for mortals, full of despair and dark things. Why do YOU belong? What's your purpose in this place, fancy? Shouldn't you introduce yourself before naming others trespassers?"

    She folds her arms a bit grouchily, feigning unconcern and less care for the fate that's befallen people here.

    Because it might just get the group some more information about just WHO the hell they've come across and what they want.

    She's also hoping that the two of them decide to lay into each other instead of teaming up, saving the group some trouble.

Kirika (481) has posed:
    Kirika shivers involuntarily as she enters the portal, growling as she feels how cold it is. Brrrrr...

    THrough force of will and training in such cold temperatures, Kirika powers through things, and she goes through the portal. She climbs out of the cabin, greeted by the HORRIBLE WAILING and also the creepy dude talking to a damn pumpkin head.

    The kitsune draws her sword, growling aggressively at Jack. "You steal children, using them for your own dark purposes. That puts you beyond the point of mercy, and I -will- see to it you are destroyed, if not banished from this plane of existence." She says, before her hand glows with holy flames.

    She takes a second, before tossing the fireball right at Jack's head.

    HOWEVER she is a horrible shot with throwing spells, this might not go as hoped.

Shielder (1028) has posed:
    "I'm not... sure, I haven't been on a lot of missions with the Union yet... listening to their radio, though, ah..." Mashu doesn't comment, because it flat out wouldn't be nice. She doesn't even bite her tongue-- there's no malice in that body, no desire to say the things that, for a split second at most, cross her mind.

    She avoids talking, standing by the Totally Normal Yuuki instead, like a dutiful guard, big shield to her side. It's what she does, after all, protect people. She's there to stop things from going bad, not accelerate it. Usually. That decision earlier wasn't the best she ever took.

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
There's the sound of an motorcycle outside the park and Kotone brings her bike into a halt she'll flip off the bike land, crunching the pavment underfoot as she lands and breaks into a run she'll end up vaulting over anythinfg that gets in her way as she moves at top speed to catch up with her friends. She's bounding along throughthe pack the previous path that she, Musha and Yuuki took.

She'll move past the games, past the bumper cars and will finally reach the Ferris Wheel where she'll take some work to get on to it as she finally makes it to the portal and she does not like it as she has to pass through it. Every bit of her Ghost is screaming this is a bad idea, this is a /very bad idea/.

What choice does she have in the end? She's not leaving people out to dry, she's not leaving her friends out to dry or anyone else who has braved this place. She keeps going as she moves to catch up and things are getting oddier and odder and she's relaly not likeing this alternate unierse either and there is /JACK/ Why is JACK here? Oh god she's not looking happy as she stares him down. She just has this horrible look of you have got to be kidding me as she sees Jack. She'll also form up with Shielder and Yuuki too as she finally catches up.

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
"'Return the children?' Well, that isn't very /creative/, now is it," says Piano-Teeth.

"Not creative at all. If you ask me --" Jack begins.

"I did no such thing," Piano-Teeth interjects, coldly.

Jack makes a hissing sound. It's probably the best he can do for a long-suffering sigh.

The figure taps the cane against the ground, beginning to pace. "In any case -- 'return the children.' My dear lady, it would be terribly rude of me to return /gifts/ so given. Do you have any idea how difficult it is to -- well," he sighs, "you wouldn't, I suppose. You reek of honey. Few wicked witches smell so sweet." He sounds like it's an offensive smell to his nose.

Another tap-tap of the cane against the ground, and a tut-tut at Staren. He waggles the weird hook-finger. "Threats gain you no ground in my domain, young man; nor do guns." How modern. He must not be one of those ancient things without any idea of the modern world. He paces back, steps long and spidery, milky-white eyes flicking to Yuuki instead.

"Well put. Well put. However, as I did not /take/ them, it would be difficult to /return/ them. They are here through someone else's doing. I was quite pleased to have them, of course, but they have that..." He clicks his tongue against his teeth, a long, slithery thing that worms through the cracks. ".../fearful/ quality. Fear is so... /unsatisfying/. Don't you agree?" Hs smiles at her, the crease that is his mouth curling too far up one side of his cheek. It's very knowing, in a weird sort of way. "Jack, on the other hand --"

Kirika does the heroic threats that he seems to expect and flings a fireball. It sails right past the crooked man and slams into the threshold, a ripple of pale green light flowing from where it connects. It hisses like water on a hot stovetop. Beyond it, Jack's eyes burn brightly. "Hey! What'd I ever do to -- ohhh, hey, you're that bint with the blessed pig-sticker! What'd I ever do to you, eh? You looked like you had a wonderful time when last we met!" Jack-of-the-Lantern cackles. "Maybe you're just mad ol' Jack never came back to visit, eh, ehh?"

"-- /is/ a trespasser, and will be," siiiigh, "dealt with." Cane tap-tap-tap. Three times this time. The figure turns to Finna. He shudders, like he was being forced to do something he doesn't precisely want to. "I," he says, "am the one who /built/ the Park. It was made for a very particular purpose, in point of fact -- granting me /immortality/. It obviously worked, though it had certain, mm, side-effects. Now, though..." A turn on a heel, a pace back, a thoughtful click of teeth. "...so many titles, so many /names/ --"

"He's the Bogeyman," Jack supplies glumly. "The honest-to-God Bogeyman. I thought these colonial-types didn't /have/ that sort of thing."

The Bogeyman stops, planting his cane again and, this time, tipping his hat politely. There's an unpleasant pressure from all around you, like the world was closing in. It's stopped, but the edges seem to be hovering closer. "You seem to be the leader of this merry band," he says, looking to Yuuki and her shield-toting guardian. "I believe I am owed some manner of introduction. Will we be speaking as civilized gentlefolk, or would you prefer to skip to the unpleasantness your compatriots seem so keen on enduring?"

Staren has posed:
    When Piano-teeth and Jack critique his words, Staren groans. "Ugh! Fucking fey."

    He notes the comment about guns though. Hmm...

    He stops himself from drawing the gun for a moment. This is the bogeyman. He build the park. Does that matter? Who knows?

    For the moment, he'll wait to start shooting. People talking to the bogeyman means more time to come up with a backup plan if guns /don't/ work. But what's the bogeyman afraid of?

    The bogeyman of the bogeyman?

    ...Shouldn't it /be/ heroes and monster-hunters, like themselves...?

Inga has posed:
Inga raises and eyebrow, looking toward Yuuki. The leader? Oh goodness.

Wicked witch? Hmph. "I am not here to be creative, nor to entertain you. We come for the children, and if you surrender them perhaps we will leave without further interrupting your amusements," she says, gesturing vaguely to Jack. But something he said strikes her. "If it was not you that brought them here, who is responsible. There was obviously a rather involved ritual with a distinct purpose," she asks. He seems like the chatty type, perhaps he will give her a bit more information. She has very little desire to look to HIS wyrd...

Inga winces as Kirika throws a fireball and it misses it's mark. She was sure that would cause the thing to attack them.

As for his introduction, Inga tilts her head slightly, brow furrowing. So that is what he is.

Finna (513) has posed:
"Well then. Guess we are trespassers." Finna agrees... though a playful lilt in her tone suggests she doesn't mind the status in this situation.

    Probably rarely does period, given who and what she is.

    "Not from this world, so you won't know the significance, but... I am Finna Snowdancer, child of the north, Chosen of Luna!" The subtle flames of Lunar anima waft suddenly from the young woman's skin, drifting and flickering in an unseen wind. Light and shadow intermixed and swirling about but never obscuring the crescent moon mark gleaming from her forehead.

    The display's rather tame and minimal instead of blinding.

    "I wonder. was it worth it? Becoming a monster nobody will accept to live forever, or were you always a dark spirit?"

    She's at least heard enough about 'the Bogeyman' from kids on Earth to know what it refers to... what she doesn't know is how to categorize that sort of thing beyond 'bad news spirit.'

    Which leaves her giving both Jack AND the Bogeyman a strange kind of grin. Grinning to mask how unnerved she is. And how bothered.

    "Is it worth the tears and the blood and the terror?"

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
It was Jack, one could see on Kotone's face that she knew Jack and she didn't like him at all and the other figure? She also feels about the same amount of fear for. Jack a man whose so vile Hell didn't want him and Heaven was afraid of him. Yet this other one? Tht gets her attention as well as she looks at the Piano-Teeth. She feels a pang of fear tht she's not felt in a very long time, the fear of the dark. Jack was the evil she knew this one? Was one she didn't and she was not looking very happy at all. She doesn't speak and she notices he knows what a gun is, this horror seems to at least stick his head out and see what humanity has been doing. She readies her stance and the being claims someone else was behing the children being here? She doesn't think the horror is lying? What reason does he /have to/ this is his domain right? Then the name drops the Bogeyman, a thing so powerful it was a thing on hundreds if not thousands of versions of earth. The Cyborg freezes for a moment as she attempts to process all this.

"We have come for the children, that is why. If we are able to leave with them I don't see the need to cause more trouble."

Sh sayshonestly she's very much intent on getting the kids out alive first and formost it seems.

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    Yuuki straightens a little bit, managing not to frown, her gentle smile and bright eyes flattening, dimming, dying out. A distant sigh punctuates her 'shift', from bright and happy radiant soul to Business Monster.

    "Boogeyman, then. I am Kuran Yuuki, of the Kuran Clan. If you require more details, I would..." She glances around. "Rather not. Suffice it to say I think you will find all of our natures self-evident here? My older brother reigns as king in our land."

    She then bows. To the Boogeyman.

    It's only polite. "Immortality is a prize and a price, many would argue, but fear is a sort of power... and blood, the currency of the soul. It is not so odd to want that, isn't it?" She asks her compatriots. "So, if you are able to return them, then, and are unsatisfied, may we have them? I would rather not impose upon you while you have so many uninvited guests."

Kirika (481) has posed:
    Kirika's blood runs cold as she stares at Jack, furious at him as she sheathes her sword. "I am NOT a hint, whatever that is." She growls again, hands burning.

     As she regards the so-called Boogeyman, Kirika pauses, before she bows to the manifestation of childhood terror. "I am Kirika Halfblood, daughter to Shukutou Ninetail, Lady Yokai of Kasun." Kirika introduces herself, with some respect ONLY for the Boogeyman.

    "We have come to retrieve the children stolen recently, and have no quarrel with you, despite Jack's...less than pleasant past affairs with us, that is." She says. "We wish only for the safe return of these children, nothing more." For now.

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
The boogeyman doesn't tend to be afraid of anything. That's what happens when you're at the top of the fear-related food chain, Staren.

"Surrender is not a word I would choose to use in this context, madame." He makes a little dismissive gesture with his hook-'hand.' "I don't know. I assumed it was one of you. The trail of anima... they think they're playing at being subtle, but not in /my/ Park. Maybe you should look to your own ranks before you assume the monster under the bed was behind it?" He sounds terribly amused.

And then not. The Bogeyman steps up to Finna, looming over her, tall and thin and rickety and so... so... /old/. He smiles with those rotted piano teeth. "Was Nathaniel Winter always the Bogeyman," he muses, "or was the Bogeyman always going to be Nathaniel Winter?" He tap-tap-tap-taps his cane. "I exist to do as I have since fear was first felt. I find this as fulfilling a pastime as any I could imagine."

He leans in, suddenly very close. "Why? Are you looking for a job? A monster for hire, perhaps...?"

Jack cuts in, addressing Kotone. "Aye, well, they're in here, past this damnable shield. Your old friend Jack couldn't break through, so maybe you ought to give it a whirl, eh? I'm sure he won't mind."

"I would." The Bogeyman steps away from Finna. He nods to Yuuki, an acknowledgement of sorts. "Be welcome, then, Miss Kuran. Would you care for a seat?" He gestures with his hook-like appendage. Roots worm their way out of the ground, twisting into a stool behind her like the ones seen in the alley full of booths and games. He spares a look at Kirika, and after a second, another worms its way up for her use. Politeness has its rewards. (Finna doesn't get one because animals must sleep by the fire.)

He leans on his cane, drumming his fingers on the silver head. "I have no reason to turn them over to you," the Bogeyman says, "and every reason to keep them for myself. Do you know how long it has been since I have heard laughter?" he asks. "I did not create an amusement park to frighten and terrify; I made it to listen to screams of childlike joy, and harness that selfsame energy to fuel my own long life. The results are..." He tilts his head back and forth. "...mixed, but the goal was still met. Life is full of little disappointments."

The Bogeyman makes a gesture at the party with his hook-hand. "What will you trade for these children that have been delivered unto me, wrapped with little bows as they are? I am, or was, a man of business -- make me an offer. And," he adds, peering at Staren again and Inga and Shielder on the side, "please do keep the threats /out/ of the negotiations. It reeks of... desperation."

Finna (513) has posed:
"Nathaniel then! If that's the truth, then why the blood, why the death, the zombies, the traps, the malice? I would guess... with the island in this state, no visitors, no children enjoying themselves... this is your last resort?" Finna frowns while peering.

    "Who will laugh surrounded by MONSTERS? So why is the park like this, if you want happy screaming kids everywhere?"

Inga has posed:
Inga frowns, troubled. He thought it was one of the chosen that set this up? It was possible, of course, but not a comforting thought by any stretch. Ranks? She knows two other people like herself. She doesn't belong to large organizations like they do. "I apologize for the assumption, then. I will have to look into it further," she comments.

Inga is worried. This is not what she expected. What could they give him, a creature like this, that would suit him and them?

Inga is quiet for a time, her eyes traveling between the bogeyman, Jack, and her allies.

She has a thought. Perhaps it is worth a try. "I have a question. You want the energy from this place to fuel your immortality, is that right? Is it only in this place that you may gather that energy?" she asks.

Staren has posed:
    Talking, talking, talking.

    How do you kill fear? Ugh, stupid twisty conceptual thinking...

    But he talks to Kotone. Staren relaxes slightly.

    And then to Staren. "It's not desperation. It's duty. And if you were a man once, then perhaps you /can/ understand, a little, even if you con't care. It's compassion. A moral compass."

    The armored catboy stands straighter. "So, you've become the incarnation of fear. What /can/ you want? What do you need those children for? The Multiverse is /full/ of fear." he releases the gun, and flings his hands out to his sides. "An infinite and ever-growing world full of the suffering and the desperate, more than I can ever hope to help. More than I will ever save. People in worlds I've never heard of live tortured existances, they hide in fear of monsters I'll never know or kill, and their lives end in terror and a broken loss of hope."

    Staren steps forward. "Not to mention the people I /do/ have an inkling of. The slaves taken by the Splugorth and turned into monsters and slaves to fight for them in the arena. The people who live their entire lives as cattle for the vampires. The minds copied by soul traders, tortured and reshaped as they suffer every depraved whim the mind of man can imagine, and noone even knows they're missing because they're not, they have originals living their lives undisturbed."

    Staren stops moving forward, and points at the Bogeyman. "You're the darkness, and darkness is /everywhere/. We're just points of light, armed to the teeth to protect the domain we can see, slowly growing and expanding... but there is /endless/ dark. What could you possibly want of us, when you can have anything you want just by staying out of our light? Wouldn't it just be easier to leave and not deal with us?"

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    Yuuki sits, because she is offered a seat, and that is polite. There is a give and take to these sorts of things. People begin taking logical leaps, and, well... It's implite to interrupt? Though there are so many words that...

    She feels tired. Like a weight pressing down on her, Yuuki has so many things she'd like to do, and doens't for any number of reasons. Some are simply passing fancies, of course, out of character, and others are too predatory - too aggressive to be adviseable.

    "You are in a position of power, obviously, and our terms are fairly clear." She offers, from her seat. Her tone is even, but weary, as if this whole event was draining on her. All she wanted to do was ferris wheel! THAT'S IT!

    And, maybe, help people, but... This was all too much. "Blood? Repairing your park? Some favor at a later date? Removing this Jack? If we are haggling, then let us haggle. Otherwise we'll go back and forth and back and forth with posturing and circling, like two great cats who are probing for weaknesses."

    She hangs her head, hair falling down over her eyes as she sighs again. "It'd be easier if you traded favorably today. Eternities are so long, and dealing with troubling things the entire time... wouldn't that be awful? To live with a deep problem, a consistent pain?"

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
"Well, well, well," goes the Bogeyman, peering at Finna. "What a clever one you are. Not completely correct, but very clever. Like a... fox, maybe?" He smiles crookedly, but only briefly. "The Fog is not my doing. It's something else. Something malicious. Something... hungry, I think. Nothing normal that makes contact with it ever laughs again."

Staren tries talking. The Bogeyman turns to him, straightening slowly. There's a clicking of bones, or something like them, a creak of a spine that he might or might not really have. "Points of light." He shakes his head.

The Bogeyman looms. He's taller than ever, colossally large to Staren's eyes and merely looming to the others. "The thing about light, /boy/," he says with his raspy, terrible voice, "is that your lights cast shadows. How could I do anything /but/ reach for it? Lingering just beyond that circle your ape-brains compel you to huddle inside, rrrr/reaching/ out --" His hand extends, cane planted in the dirt, terrible, spidery fingers reaching out --

He stops, and withdraws. He lifts his cane. He's normal-sized again, no longer a looming thing of nightmares that trips all the breakers in Staren's lizard brain. "It doesn't matter how vast the dark is. The Fog won't let /anything/ go." He tilts his head, staring at Inga. "Which means I must make do with what I have, here, in the Park."

Yuuki gets another look. It's more thoughtful, if anything on that ruined face could be thoughtful. "Blood can grease the wheels, but what use is a pump with an empty well?" She does bring up some pretty good points, though; she can see it on his face. She can see it because she's acquainted and accustomed to dealing with monsters not unlike him. That pause in predation, that deliberation.

"I want that laughter again," he finally says. "You've obviously found a way in. Bring others. Make the Park sing for another day. Swear an oath, and do it soon -- and not in the long 'soon' of the eternal," the Bogeyman adds warningly. "You are not the ones trapped on this island, and I am by no means confined to these walls."

Staren has posed:
    Staren leans back slightly when the man reaches. "I guess I should be thankful." Staren replies with as much snark as he can muster, and a bit of nervousness, as the bogeyman explains he's trapped here.

    At Piano Teeth's proposal, Staren rubs the back of his helmet. "You built this park. If you prefer a future of happiness to fear, I can get you manpower. But ideas are hard to come by. Is anyone else who helped dream this place up still on Solomon Island?"

Finna (513) has posed:
"Nobody will come. Survival's the only thing anyone can think of with the Fog here. Not fun and laughs! Not screams and play fear." Finna spouts mopily. She's starting to get curious about what the whole park is supposed to be like, since THIS is seriously some kind of... aberration.

    "Oh right, where ARE we? Your sanctum, spirit?" The question's asked idly with a great deal of thoughtful blinkingg. "It doesn't... quite look like the horrors of the Fog. Speaking of... whaaaaaaat DO you know of this rotten Fog, Nathaniel? Getting rid of it is in all our interests--"

    She blinks again, whips around, and gives Jack a wry look. "Not sure about YOURS. What do YOU do?"

Kotone Yamakawa has posed:
Kotone Yamakawa looks at JAck for a moment and she tilts her head she doesn't say anyhting else she doesn't seem too happy but hey the main objective always has and always will be saving the kids. She Take a deep breth for a moment as she looks to the Bogeyman. If the Savage Coast was not a hell's mouth she'd be up to try to get the park running again if they were being. She will deal with things one way or anotehr when it's settled Kotone just now thinking on the offer she knos there's threat.
F "I'm afraid there are complications against repairing the park at this time.

"So you wish us to bring others and use the park as it's intended purpose?"

So he's asking for them to bring others like them to use the park as it was intended to for a day.

"I presume we'll not face the defences of the park if we do make this oath and honor it?"

Inga has posed:
Inga nods. "I understand. I do not make oaths lightly, however. I cannot swear that we will lift this fog...only that we are trying," she responds.

She doesn't know, shall they just have a lovely little park outing, amidst the zombies? She doesn't think so.

Yuuki Kuran (518) has posed:
    There's a gesture from Yuuki to the others. "They swear to help, to bring manpower to revitalize your realm. With the children, then, I suppose you must enforce your own power. Creating a place where children can laugh and play and enjoy themselves, not a sideshow alley of horror, pain, and death. Hunters come calling on those that simply feast in the darkness." She notes.

    "If you would have laughter and joy, can you make this place safe? Thrills become terror quickly if danger - real danger - happens."

    You know, reflecting back on this it probably would have been fine to just blow this guy out. Instead...

    "If this location is poor, perhaps some other locale would be better? Unspoiled?" Yuuki's sad, tired eyes look at Inga, Staren, Kotone. "I don't know this place."

Inga has posed:
Inga shakes her head at Yuuki. "I do not know that he can leave this island," she answers in brief. "The situation here is...very complicated."

Wuyin Tsai has posed:
"No one among the living," the Bogeyman tells Staren. "They walked out to sea, when the Fog came."

He turns to Finna. "There was a well of some sort of... energy," he says, "underneath the island. I imagine it's what caused my geomancy to have certain, hmm, /negative/ results." Like making him the Bogeyman instead of just a more normal kind of immortal, maybe? "I suspect the Fog is connected to that well. There were seals, of course, but something strong must have broken them."

Jack, meanwhile, grins his rotten pumpkin grin. "Me? I walk the Earth, love, lookin' for wine, women, and song! I come and go where I please, when I please, and how I please! Heaven won't take me, and the Devil ain't allowed to!" He laughs some. "Funny thing, I thought the power these little ones were making would be the perfect thing to get my feet back under me again, and, well, here we are!"

"Jack-of-the-Lantern is my guest for the next several days, whereupon I will likely release him to do whatever it is he does," the Bogeyman adds. "He refuses to die, and is useless to me, even if his jovial state."

"Ah, ye say the sweetest things," Jack asides with his permanent grin.

"Correct," he tells Kotone. The Bogeyman taps his cane. Tap-tap-tap, tap-tap. "I could limit the dangers," he eventually says. "It is not all my doing. I think any you bring here will need to be tough enough to endure some minor scrapes and tumbles to make it to my doorstep anyway, mm?" He waves his hand. "This is my domain; my... sanctum, yes," he confirms for Finna, "if you want to call it that. Leaving would be inconvenient for now, and terribly difficult even were I not so starved for sustenance. The Fog is a very convincing barrier."

He half-turns, making a motion. The mint-green light flickers in front of the mausoleum. "The children are inside. They've been tired out, but they're relatively unharmed. Scrapes and precise little cuts. Not my doing, of course, but /interesting/ all the same. Take them. Return down the path you came, and you'll have your way out of my Park. And remember..."

There's a glint in his uneven eyes. "...tell your friends."