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  1. GM The man who walked into Silberman's Books could best be described as "goth pimp with hipster garnish," the unholy union of a failed stage magician and an even less successful pick-up artist. He wore a long black velvet overcoat with puffy faux-fur trim, also in black. His slacks, suit jacket, and long-sleeved collared shirt were black as well, while his waistcoat and necktie were splashes of red. His dark hair was tied back in a braided pony-tail which almost reached his waist, peeking out from beneath a wide-brimmed black Stetson hat with a red ostrich feather stretching a foot and a half above and behind him. His beard was almost as long as his hair, waxed and styled in a pseudo 19th century fashion. He wore several fine chains around his neck, from which hung a giant gold pentagram and several different crystals. All of his fingers were covered with mis-matched rings. A pair of black snake-skin boots, polished to a high gloss shine, completed the ridiculous ensemble. The man clicked his walking stick on the floor as he strode up to the counter, swinging a briefcase with his other hand. The red-lacquered wood was topped with a silver handle shaped like a coiled dragon. He tipped the brim of his hat to the employee behind the counter and gave them a smug grin. "I'd be much obliged if you could point me toward the restroom, and if you could have a double espresso macchiato and your manager waiting for me when I get back. Assuming the beans are fair trade, of course." The man reached into the breast pocket of his suit jacket and pulled out a metal calling card case, and a money clip bulging with a three-inch thick stack of folded bills. He pulled out an embossed white business card, and a hundred-dollar bill, and slid them both across the counter. "Keep the change. Buy yourself something nice." He winked. The business card read "HAWTHORNE BOOKS & ANTIQUITIES," with an address in Bedlam City, Wisconsin.
  2. I'll edit the opening posts in the IC and OOC threads to add more character tags as more PCs join the story. Heritage, if Grimalkin is in the store, then I'm assuming that, with her Extended Hearing, she can hear the "gentleman" whether she's out on the floor or locked away in her office. If you decide for whatever reason that she's not in the store, let me know, and I'll roll with it. But if she is, then give me some Knowledge skill checks, for Arcane Lore, Current Events, History, and Theology/Philosophy. If she lacks skill ranks for any of them, just do a raw Int check for those.
  3. The DuTemps Building July 10th, 2018 10:59 AM Before the sky bled, Temperance was taken in by the city below. Things were tranquil, and she wasn't quite sure where they'd go next. She and Sharl were still happy in their relationship. They weren't necessarily making any moves towards any particular destinations, but they were okay with standing in the middle ground. She had just graduated from college, and while she was putting herself out on the job market, she was still experiencing that difficulty of having a good - but not incredible - GPA and some internship experience. Maybe I'll put my "night work" on the resume and see how many heads explode. There was peace. There was quiet. There was a city below, remembering what was lost and celebrating the victory that had been gained through great sacrifice. She stood on the lip of a castle in the sky, wondering how her life had gotten to this point, and where it might go next. Then the screaming began. In a hundred different voices, from boiling asphalt to sparking power lines. Her phone went off in her hand. A message from her father. THE CITY IS GOING MAD. RUN. Before she could even more, a great red rent was torn in the sky, and a swarm of steel locusts descended. She ran to the lip of the building, struck dumb for half a second, before she got a good look... No. Oh, gods, no. She ran back into the building, reaching for her phone to send out a mass blast to the group. UNDER ATTACK. TERMINUS.
  4. GM April 25th, 10:00 a.m. West End, Sid's Cafe After a few more messages sent back and forth, a meeting time and place had been set for Sid's Cafe. It had everything the heroes could want, ranging from coffee and baked goods to cider and salads, but most importantly, it had a small, second floor dining room that they could reserve. With four walls, a closed door, and creaking stairs leading up, it provided ample privacy to discuss their business while also satisfying the desire of some for a public meeting place. Arriving at Sid's gives a warm welcome in the form of tempting aromas. Judging from the crowd of people in the bottom floor happily chatting as they sip their coffee, brunch seems to be a busy time for Sid. Thankfully for those who order food, the staff behind the counter keep the line moving quickly and efficiently. The decor is precisely what one would expect from a highly modern cafe. None of the tables are of the same design, nor are the chairs. The only common thread between them is that they are wooden. The restaurant has a purple wallpaper decorated with fleur-de-lis, although hardly any remain visible under the mass of pictures and various idiosyncratic junk mounted on the walls. Regardless of one's tastes towards the design choices, the second floor proves adequate for the heroes' devices, sequestered away from the customers downstairs. The table in the middle of the roof is large enough to accommodate eight, although on one side it has a long, purple sofa instead of chairs. Along the walls of the room are three more tables, all designed to seat two people. Along one wall and leading out onto a veranda are a pair of french doors letting in the majority of the room's light. Judging from the hum of muffled conversation from below, it is apparent that the walls are thick enough to keep a quiet conversation within the room.
  5. GM Saturday April 7th, 2018 6:00 pm Waco, Texas The Cameron Park Zoo was a point of pride for the city of Waco. Plenty of people used it as a source of outdoor recreation. Since early this morning dozens of people and cars had entered the park and none had come out. This alone would have been concerning. The fact that multiple bordering neighborhoods had been swallowed up as well made it all the worse. No less than a hundred people had gone missing, people had stopped going in, but no one was coming out. What had come out was a bear. From a distance, one might assume that it was one of the American Black Bears from the Cameron Park Zoo, perhaps even rightly. Except now it was about three times the size and when it had been approached by police it had breathed flames at them. To put it lightly? Not your average day in the park. Hyperactive had gotten the call about an expanded park early in the morning. He had at that point decided he wasn’t going to pick a fight with trees. When he’d heard the reports of missing persons he’d decided it might be his issue to fix. When he heard about a bear wandering down University Parks, it definitely became his issue to solve. So he decided it was time to run home.
  6. Claremont Academy Friday, December 9 3:42 PM The trees were busy. Lilly was still coming into her connection to the ephemeral to a certain degree. She had the basics down and knew her oak from her holly, but she was still trying to understand so much about spirits. Their language, their politics, their intricacies... it was a lot to take in. But she at least felt she knew something. Like how some tree spirits should be dormant in the winter. But here they were - the oak, the cedar - gathering on the grounds of Claremont and associating with their brethren. And they seemed to be knocking on the trunks of the sleeping trees, trying to get in. --- Lincoln Friday, December 9 6:32 PM It was already dark, but winter did that. It just meant more time to patrol. Unfortunately, while the cold never quite bothered her, nights of balancing crime fighting and finals prep did, which was why Temperance was feeling a bit reluctant to take to the sky this evening. After about 15 minutes on the ice sledge, she realized she'd need something hot and caffeinated if she wanted to avoid the world's most embarrassing - if unique - collision. She set the sledge down outside of a 7-Eleven, somehow managing to find a parking space that had not been claimed by a lawn chair in preparation of the oncoming snow. "Excuse me." Temperance turned to find a man in a green Eisenhower jacket and Smokey hat lurking in the corner. "They say you're the water girl around her," he said. "Well, one of them. They didn't exactly have contact info, but the police said I might be able to find you around here." "I'm one of the ones who deal with water, yes. But if the police sent you to me, I imagine it's a bit... stranger than that." The man extended his hand. "Jack Perkins, National Parks Service," he said. He reached into his jacket, pulling out a folder and handing it to Temperance. "We had a... recent incident, and was wondering you might be able to bring your particular insight to it." Temperance flipped open the folder, only to be hit with a crime scene. An SUV, covered in mud and wet leaves, lay on the edge of a snow-covered shore, a tow cable hitched to the back. The next photo showed the interior of the car, and the body sitting in the front seat. The man was dressed in winter woodsman gear, complete with watchman's cap, and had that particular coloration one might associate with a drowned man. Hell of a way to start the evening. Still, Temperance had to maintain her composure to sell the mystique. She looked to Jack. "These photos are telling me a story, and I'm guessing it's not the obvious one." "The deceased is Thomas Laurent. 29, former lineman working out of Barnegat. We found a chainsaw and pitons in his car - logging equipment. He was in the middle of Wharton." Wharton. A picture was starting to come together in her mind. She knew it was the wrong one, but she didn't know just what she was looking for yet. "So, the theory is, he was engaged in illegal logging, drove out into a snowy glade, parked on a frozen lake, and went through the ice. But I'm guessing there's something wrong with that picture..." Jack nodded. "The car was in park when it was extracted from the lake. But there were tire treads running 200 feet from the shore. And, according to our forensics guys, the tires were not running when the car make its trip. It's as if... something pushed it into the lake." Temperance studied the photos again. She thought she might be seeing things, but the front bumper looked a little loose. "Or dragged it."
  7. Wednesday, July 27, 2016 3:30 PM It was another hot summer in Freedom. The heat seemed to stretch on for endless days, wrapped in the general mugginess of New Jersey. Normally, that moisture wasn't a problem for Eliza Oxum - it helped when you could manipulate a cool mist out of a thick haze - but today, her attention wasn't quite on manipulating the weather to her personal comfort. There were other matters at play. As she sipped at her iced coffee and watched the world go by on the streets, she thought back to last night's conversation with Sharl. He was planning to pursue opportunities in Emerald City, out on the West Coast. The commute would be nothing, really, to somebody who could essentially e-mail himself across country... but it still meant he'd be devoting plenty of time to elsewhere. He would be back, of course, and could be back easily. But it was... this was one of those frustrating parts of being a superhero. Having a long-distance relationship that wasn't really long-distance. It was in that weird interstitial zone of coming back together easily, but knowing how far apart you were the rest of the time. This wasn't the first time it had happened, and she knew the territory. But it was still a hell of a thing to unknot. The faint smell of smoke roused her from her distractions, as did the shouts of people. She got up from her table and ran down the block. She could see the source of the hubbub soon enough. An apartment building - five stories, it appeared - was on fire, smoke pouring out the windows and flames licking off the roof. Eliza ducked into the nearest alley she could find, willing water from the camelback and pulling her coat out from her duffel bag. The good thing about this city was, there was always some distraction waiting right around the corner.
  8. Dutemps Building December 2016 It was unusual for a groups of people who lived in the same location to gather together to throw a Holiday party, but Dutemps wasn’t the most normal of places. First it was a castle high above the skyline of Freedom City, looking like it was from a fairytale or a cartoon but then again so did a lot of Freedom City. And this fairytale castle in the sky was home to an amazing bunch of female misfit heroes. And today they were having a party. One of the smaller halls had been prepared for today’s event with a incredibly well stocked buffet table and a fairly impressive sound system for hopefully a fruitfuls night partying.
  9. GM Post October the 23rd, 1941 - Pacific Ocean, near the Ni'ihau, State of Hawai'i As the war that engulfed the majority of the planet raged on, a lone Sentoku type submarine sailed under the surface of the Pacific Ocean. It's destination, the Republic of Ecuador, still a ways away, was currently being pressured into signing a treaty with the Republic of Peru by the United States. If signed, the treaty would mean the complete unification of the American continent, in direct opposition to the Axis powers. The Sentoku type submarine, helmed by Vice Admiral Konoe Takahashi of the Empire of Japan, was tasked with sneaking under the radars of the USA navy, making a line to Ecuador, and harass the nation until it agreed to signing a treaty with Japan instead. Of course, a single vessel would be hardpressed to achieve any results of significance, which was why it was originally accompanied by a small fleet of Kaidai type submarines. The rest of the fleet, however, was completely lost when it came under attack; Umiquan vessels had been engaging the Japanese in the Pacific, reportedly, over territorial trespassing violations. VA Konoe looked weary, and the dread his sailors felt was palpable. They knew this would turn into a suicide mission, even if they somehow managed to reach their destination. Nevertheless, they had their orders, and they'd recieved no response regarding the destruction of their fleet. The old wolf could only laugh at his pitiable fate, the result of expansionist politics gone horribly, horribly wrong, and could barely sleep, waitting restlessly for the inevitable alert that they'd been intercepted. And become intercepted they did, as a single Umiquan vessel, shaped like a manta ray, came into the radar's view. But this one vessel didn't seem to be part of a pursuing party, as it was following its own course, making no attempt at communication with the Sentoku type, nor moving threateningly against it. If the submarine could recieve optical footage from the Umiquan vessel, it would have revealed the royal crest of the current Tyrant King, Lord Laosoon the IVth... Friday, May the 8th, 2015 - Hunter Museum of Natural History, North End, Freedom City 16:34 It would seem that the attractions this day were of particular importance. Envoys from Atlantis had arrived, lending their artifacts for display, in commemoration of the Sea King's joinning the Freedom League. The exhibition would last for one month, starting today, and for its duration, admitance to the museum would be completely free to the public. Among the exhibits, a replica of the first crown King Thallor, King Theseus' father, wore during his reign, several sculptured depictions of the Ancient Greek Gods, most prominent of whom was Poseidon, God of the seas and Patron God of Atlantis, and a black jewel the size of one's fist, adorned with the symbols and mystic runes of Atlantis, dating back to the 17th century. Quite a few Atlanteans had surfaced to Freedom City, for the chance to see their valued heritage being displayed side to side with that of their human cousins. Many Atlantean kids wow'd in wonderment at the display of the Tyrannosaurus Rex's skeleton, a sight that even most of the adult Atlanteans couldn't help but admire, both for its sheer scale and detail, as well as its evocative visage. This day would prove a poignant step in the continued improvement between the humans and the Atlanteans, and the royal family of Atlantis was sure to attend.
  10. Friday April 22, 2016 It's an ordinary Friday afternoon - if you count news of a terrorist attack on Ocean Heights Amusement Park as ordinary. No one on the police scanner is entirely sure what's going on - there are reports of multiple officers down, some sort of massacre, "blood, blood everywhere," but whatever it is, it's very bad! If Nina was honest with herself, the main reason she was at mosque today was because she was in costume. The little Kingston storefront mosque wasn't the sort of place she'd go to worship even if she was feeling so inclined - too humble and unadorned, with the sort of simplicity that bespoke the sort of temporal poverty she still wasn't accustomed to. But speaking to the handful of young women at the mosque, most of them black Americans, well, that was a satisfying experience for the princess of Socotra. "From Nusayba to Queen Arwa, women have led, women have ruled, women of the Faith have fought from the very beginning. Never let anyone tell you you cannot be what you are because you are a Muslim." She looked around and struck one hand against another, her voice rising. "And never let anyone tell you that you can only ever be a Muslim - our faith is a finger on the hand that we raise to fight against injustice." When her police beeper went off, she reluctantly made her excuses, leaving behind her card before she headed outside to don her shoes and gather up her sword. Looking back as the glass door closed behind her, she waved to the excited young women inside, many of whom were taking pictures on their phones, before she began leaping from rooftop to rooftop, propelling herself towards the Amusement Park that was evidently the scene of some serious crisis.
  11. Go ahead and get initiative up!
  12. November 1, 2015 The DuTemps Building While the machine intelligence briefed the superheroes on relevant global events she'd gathered from observing the planet's news cycle, Tarva, her head on her hand and shoulders slumped as usual to disguise her great height, was in the process of making notes on her yellow legal pad, the heavy black ink of her pen scratching quietly as she worked. NORMAL MOVIE FOR KIMBER - 2001? CLOCKWORK ORANGE? AN ANDALUSIAN DOG? She didn't really understand the appeal of any of the bizarrely sanitized movies that people on Earth-Prime enjoyed watching, but after some consideration (and careful scrutinizing of their plots), she'd selected a few that she thought would make for an enjoyable evening. When Bluebird paused to change topics to recent interstellar news, Tarva nonchalantly put her hand under the table and rested it on Kimber's thigh, giving her lover a warm smile as she locked eyes with her. They'd have an evening all to themselves yet. Nobody's going to come between us, she thought comfortingly. Nobody.
  13. January 2016 "So why didn't you bring your robot body?" asked Eira Katastroff as she walked alongside Sharl Tulink, the blonde girl now substantially taller than she had been just a few days earlier. At twelve years old, the young full-body cyborg had long since mentally outgrown the body she'd been uploaded into in 2011, but a Christmas visit to America and the Archetech labs (along with a chastened Uncle Magnus) had gotten her installed in a brand new body more suitable for a girl of twelve. She was over five feet tall now, a young woman who came up to Sharl's shoulder, her long blonde hair in a braid that went almost all the way down her back. (Eira had been a big fan of the Hunger Games) "Because I want people to be looking at you, not at me in a giant robot body," commented Sharl with a big brother's grin at his sister...well, not by blood, but as close as it could come out here in the 'real world.' "We wouldn't be able to get anything done out here." He was projected today, a miniaturized holo-emitter actually something included in Eira's physical 'body', the magnetic enhancers she used to get around with peak human strength and dexterity easily able to power the matrix that produced his own unique energy matrix. It meant he had to stick close, at least until they got into the DuTemps Building and he could directly interface with its systems, but that was okay - why would he not stick with his not-so-little friend? "So tell me more about your girlfriend," teased Eira, which he had to admit was the other reason he was planning to integrate with the DuTemps systems once they were up in the castle proper. Sharl used a security code Eliza had given him to get in one of the staff elevators, and the two of them were whisked upstairs towards the castle. "She's very nice," said Sharl, "and I think you'll like her. You can tell her what you were telling me about the vatnavættir, I think she'll like that." He hmmed. "But maybe in a different way." Come to think of it, Eliza would probably be pretty put off by stories about how Sweden's national superteam was endeavouring to clear psychic debris from the oceans surrounding the high-latititude nation. "Eliza's views are very different than mine, or yours, but I still respect them." Eira was pretty sure that was because Sharl and Eliza were having sex, a prospect that managed to be disgusting and hilarious at the same time, but said nothing to that effect as she and Sharl talked more about the friends who lived in the DuTemps Building, some of whom Sharl had known since she'd been first been uploaded almost five years earlier now. Calling upstairs as their elevator reached the security barrier of the castle, Sharl reached the castle's AI, who patched him through to Kimber. "Hey Kimber, it's me!" he said to the air, transmitting at the same time up to Bluebird. "Let us up, I've got a visitor who wants to meet my favorite Canadian." "
  14. tarva, ghost girl, temperance, crimson tiger, dutemps, wraith, blue fox
  15. GM Neptune City, Kingdom of Atlantis Approximately 75 miles NorthWest of the island of Tenerife (At the Ocean's floor) Saturday, June 7, 2014 2:14 PM It had been a couple days after Giang and her graduating class had ended their tenure at Claremont. In honor of such an event Thaelia had seen fit to throw a graduation party of sorts for her, now former, roommate. It wasn't the first lavish celebration for a Claremont graduation that Atlantis had thrown. Thetis' own party a few years ago being a fresh memory amongst the royal guards. Whom found themselves in competition with her 'norse suitor' for the king's entertainment. The undersea kingdom's environment limited the number of the pair's academic peers which could easily attend significantly. At least without taking steps to try and make the sea more hospitable for most. However, the triton Wave-Eye and the half water elemental Temperance found themselves welcome additions to the walls of the Sea King's Northernmost palace. The seafaring heroes were led to a large circular room in the walls of the palace where they were instructed they could rest while preparations commenced on the celebration. Various pieces of furniture and Atlantean cuisine were prepared so as to make their stay more comfortable. The room, like other Atlantean structures, was kept well lit by glowing fungal infested rock. Atlanteans did not necessarily need the illumination of course. However, the lighting system had a secondary purpose of providing an artificial catalyst for photosynthesis. Brightly colored coral lined much of the architecture which otherwise was reminiscent of Ancient Rome. With most buildings favoring a circular design.
  16. GM 70 Miles South of Japan Monday, October 13, 2014 3:20 PM At 11:00 AM a scientific expedition to the ocean's depths uncovered what they thought was the lost ruins of an abandoned civilization. They sent two divers to explore the ruins. What they discovered instead was a dimensional rift to an undersea society of Shark Men. The Sharkpeople immediately attacked the scientists and stormed the vessel. For whatever reason, the leader of the Sharkpeople broadcast a ransom demand for the world to see. Requesting a sum of sixty five million dollars. As well as for the waters surrounding a five mile radius from their rift to be declared foreign lands under their control. Demanding that even Atlantis had no claim to their waters. A concession that the Sea King found both odd and insulting before refusing. Leading the Japanese Government in a bit of a bind. Desperate for a solution the Japanese Government reached out to Glamazon, Temperance, Tsunami, and Myrmidon. Their exploits with the >Sea Cruise Magnificent had given three of the heroes a bit of a reputation in the nautical community. Myrmidon's own reputation of quality assurance preceded even theirs. Whether well earned or not , the four were eager to help out. Greeted by the locals as they arrived one by one, the Japanese Coast Guard provided a Tsurugi Class Patrol ship as well as a small crew to close the distance. Trusting that the shark men could not utilize the delicate instruments aboard the ship, the skipper allowed them to get within fifty feet of the much larger ship. The crew all lined up once the ship came to an abrupt stop. More than one curious eye glancing with binoculars at the interesting sight in front of them.
  17. July 11, 2015 Kimber finished etching the last rune into the surface of the ice with a telekinetically controlled chisel before floating a few meters into the air to survey her work critically. After the better part of two years of preparation and careful work she wasn't going to let the arcane ritual equivalent of a typo ruin everything now, especially now with so many of her friends on the way to help pull off her plan. Indira and Eve were already waiting on the bleachers on the other side of the plexiglass, the latter having been convinced to rent out the indoor ice rink for the day with only a minimum of pleading. Kimber had asked Tarva to head up to the announcer's booth so that she could double check the complex circles of inscribed sigils that made up the first step of the day's undertaking. Satisfied with the results, the poltergeist nodded and turned to her friends, hands on her hips. "Good to go! Just in time, too! Everybody should be getting here pretty soon!"
  18. The OOC! To start off with the DuTempts Building crew are already at the ice rink with Kimber any everyone else can begin arriving! Nick, Equinox and Frost should all have a general idea of what Kimber's been working on since she'd have asked them for their professional opinions along the way. I'll leave it to each of you how complete a picture of the final goal you think they'd have. She'd have likewise let Temperance know she needed help with something involving Jotunheim and made a weak attempt to coach the whole thing in technobabble for Citizen's peace of mind. Papercut and Revenant may only know that Kimber asked for their help and that there's a non-zero chance that there's going to be some monster fighting involved. Kimber's friends from True North are stuck dealing with another Igneous (lava men) crisis, which Frost and Blue Fox would certainly know about, if it comes up.
  19. Friday, May 15, 2015 Port Regal, Freedom City Sundown The setting sun cast long shafts of golden light across the city, making long shadows on the lawns of the oldest homes in Freedom City; complicated gables and spires threw Escheresque shadows across wide, manicured lawns. This was once the quarter for the rich and powerful, and although many may have relocated north of the bay, it held old money, old power, and old secrets. Three women were determined to reveal some of these secrets. Blodeuwedd had been making her regular patrols along the waterfront when a silent alarm drew her attention. Armed thugs had been trying to break into a warehouse containing exotic metals like iridium and electrum. Monkey Wrench had caught a gang trying to sneak into the shop and steal scrap metal; when the drones cornered them, they would only scream about the Signal, the Signal! Temperance had spent most of her day tracking down a spiritual violation, a nearly-silent scream that seemed to pervade the entire city. Their separate investigations had lead them to an experimental physicist of ASTRO Labs who hadn’t been in the office for two weeks, and from there to a home his family had owned three generations ago. Apparently the family’s fortunes had fallen from the Forties, but the man had returned to his roots for whatever scheme was afoot.
  20. Eclipse Thursday, December 16th 2014 9:52 PM After two weeks straight of her first round of college finals, Eliza could feel her brain curdling into the consistency of butterscotch pudding. Between her studies, her extracurriculars, and her nightly extracurriculars, there was only so much she could take until she lost herself in something stupid. Then came Guardian. The show was another attempt to do a hero drama in primetime, this time focused mainly on a teen audience. The show had acquired an ensemble cast that had everyone on Tumblr fighting for one or another, but no one got more attention than Harry Langstrom, a.k.a. Jonathan Regent, a.k.a. the Guardian, the super-strong (though not budget-busting), super-tough street vigilante and lead of the show. Janet, her roommate, was a big fan of the show, and while Eliza couldn't quite get fully into it ("Why is that girl fighting crime in three-inch heels?"), it allowed for some time to unwind, bond, and eat some popcorn. So, when news had come around that the show was going to be shooting in Freedom to set up a backdoor pilot for another teen hero series, Janet had jumped at the news. And Eliza, needing a good diversion, had decided to come along. That's how she and close to a hundred other fans found themselves gathered outside a security cordon at Eclipse, which was closed down for the night for fight scene filming. So far, none of the stars had shown up, which meant there was naught but gossip and fan theory to fill the air. And cold. It was December in New Jersey, after all, and most of the fans were bundled up to deal with the weather. "Aren't you freezing?" Janet asked Eliza, who didn't even have her coat closed. Realizing she'd been distracted, she tightened up the jacket to make a show of things. "Guess I just had my mind on other things." "I can understand. Man, I hope I get some pics of Langstrom. This'll be great!" Yeah. High priority individuals, hundreds of attendants... this will be just fine.
  21. Freedom College, Harbridge Dorm Common Room Monday, December 1, 2014 3:59 AM Thanksgiving had come and gone, finals season was on the horizon, and no one was forgiving. There weren't many finals coming Eliza's way - half her classes were working on the idea of term papers and final presentations. But the other half did have some sort of exam component to the home stretch, and she wanted to be ready. And something about the encounter with the muggers on the night's patrol had left her wired and unable to get to sleep. With little else to do, she decamped to the common room and assembled flash cards from her textbooks, the TV blaring on in front of her. "Feeling restless?" Eliza looked up - it was Samantha, one of the RAs. She was clad in a bathrobe and clutching a mug of cocoa. "Your first finals season. It happens to all of us. Don't worry, you'll survive mostly intact." "Yeah, well," she said, "helps to make sure." Samantha plopped down on the couch behind her as she kept assembling cards on early playwrights and their works. "You usually watch TV when you can't sleep?" "Helps to lull. Always been hypnotic, since I was young. Never seen this one before, though..." Temperance looked up at the screen. A cheery yellow font advertised Five by Five!, backed up by a jaunty riff with trumpets. Going by the opening credits, it was a sitcom about a military family of five growing up in somewhat cramped on-base housing. "Maybe it's one of the short-lived ones," she said, as two of the family's kids flinched after a chance encounter with the gunnery sergeant descended into wordless shouting. "Sometimes they do that. Package all the forgotten classics of yesteryear --" 'Yeah, well, it looks interesting," said Samantha. "Looks like it would've been early Eighties, so while 'Nam was still hanging over everyone's head. Trying to normalize and lighten up the military while the shadow of a bloody conflict still hung in the popular consciousness, not unlike that Enlisted show last season - sorry, Media Studies student. This just comes naturally." Eliza smiled, then turned back to the screen. The credits didn't seem to be ending yet, even though the opening montage had now segued to the father in a live fire exercise. Something seemed to flicker on the screen, a motion out of the corner of the frame. "Wait. Did you see that?" "See what? I didn't --" And then, to that same jaunty Eighties soundtrack, the soldier right next to the father went down in a blaze of bullets, blood gushing from the wounds. The father turned in panic, only to take a round right in the temple. "Oh, Jesus!" As the music played on, the base was attacked by unseen foes, dressed in regalia Temperance didn't recognize. In that same montage style, the base was sacked, the soldiers and their families taken out one by one... and Eliza swore she could see something flickering through the static, lurking behind the scenery... "Change the channel!" Samantha reached for the remote, just as the wife's hand touched the camera, leaving a bloody handprint as she slid out of view. The channel flipped... to an episode of Aqua Teen Hunger Force, already in progress. As if testing the waters, Samantha flipped back to find a rerun of Friends where Five by Five! had been. "...the **** was that?" "Probably some sort of prank. Like that creepypasta stuff that goes around the Internet." But Eliza couldn't shake the sensation that she had seen something in the broadcast. Something guiding the imagery...
  22. Because even when you're dealing with that dick you still need to follow the rules.
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