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January 6, 2014 

7:20 AM EST 

The first ray of sunshine came in the window and Richard Cline opened his eyes, ready for his last day off before they headed back to the West Coast for a full week of shooting. Richard sat up, pushing aside the linen sheets, and looked at the waxed-paper window on the wall of the little wooden house. Ticktickticktick Time slowed to a crawl for Richard Cline, as Fast-Forward took in his changed bedroom with all the time in the world. Linen sheets, featherbed, waxpaper windows, and I think that's a chamberpot under the bed...oh, geez, am I back in the Renaissance again? He looked down at the woman sharing his bed and reached down to gently nudge Paige awake, feeling the familiar brush against his mind that had been part of his soul for twenty-five years. Aw, geez, did I take her back with me again? She's gonna kick my ass after that thing with the Wild West...


Ticktickticktick On the handwrought, overlapping planks, there was a woodcut of a man frozen in a blur of motion paired with a smiling woman in a low-cut dress, smoke and fire rising from her hands. Behind them were a young man in equal speed, and a young girl with the same energies as her mother. The legend read 




The smell of horses outside, the sounds of activity; a circus in the middle of waking up for the day. It's another goddamned crisis in time! Richard Cline snapped awake alongside an altered version of his wife, dressed in a long black nightdress, and asked the question he had to ask.

"...Baby, is that you?" 

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The morning sun had come, bringing good tidings of a new day. Hronos was already scouring the streets of Freedom City, when, at 7:20 AM, it happened.


All it took was an instant.



Three millenia ago, when the world was still young, history went through one of its bloodiest and unstable chapters. The world was consumed in chaos and fire, as the Protomagi, the first wizards to walk the world, waged their terrible war against each other. Hurricanes, Thunderstorms, Earthquakes, Volcanic Erruptions; these were but a few of nature's forces that were bend to the Protomagi's will and turned against one another. To the people, they were as gods, but to one another, they were nothing more than competition. But even as they consumed themselves in their petty feuds, they soon became aware of the oncoming Blight.


Finding cracks in the tear of reality opened from the magical warfare, the Blight came like the Tide and crashed like a Wave, leaving nothing but destruction and desolation on their wake. A collection of demons, wraiths, shadows, djinn, and all manner of creatures that are since spoken of in hush tones, everything they touched they corrupted, and everything they corrupted they destroyed and consumed. After the three greatest Protomagi were turned to the evil of the Blight, the rest of them soon realised that they could not stand against this force on their own, and so a truce was called. Gathering their resources and putting their minds to the task, a plan was soon devised; they would craft weapons, creatures of power that could neither be corrupted nor consumed, creatures that were strong enough to stand up against this abomidable threat.


Made of Astrochalcum, a rare metal of great magical potency, and each infused with energy from one of the five sciences of magic each(Chronomancy, Necromancy, Geomancy, Psychomancy, and Arithmomancy), the five Golems joined their creators in war against the Blight, and after an aeon of fighting, they emerged victorious, repelling the Blight, and resealing the tear. Deciding that the cost of another war would be too great to pay, the Protomagi agreed to renew the truce, dividing their territory and ensuring that they kept well out of each others' way. As for the five Golems, their purpose fullfilled, the Protomagi sealed them in lands unknown, but made sure that they'd reactivate, if the Blight should ever return.


So it came to pass, the Protomagi vanished, kingdoms rose and fell, magic went and came back, and 3 millenia later, on the 15th aeon of the Christian Callender, on a faraway land that had come to be known as New Camelot City, Hronos, the Golem of Chronomancy, had awoken from its long slumber. His duty still clear, Hronos was ready to join the battle once more against the Blight, and fulfill his contract. However, there was a small issue...



This is incorrect. Hronos thought. Gone was the blue colored robotic structure of the Mechanodynamis, replaced with a body that felt like an empty full body armor. The Essense of Time was there, but it felt foreign as it felt familiar at once. This world does not match my databases. This body is not my own. These memories are not of myself. And yet they feel as real as my original memories. Furthermore, chronal energy is leaking in great numbers from everywhere, which would suggest a temporal anomaly of the highest magnitude. This would lead to only one logical conclusion. There was a worrying dread on his voice, as the next bit was being vocalised. "Something must have altered reality."


All it had taken was an instant.

Edited by Vahnyu
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Tona Baudin stood atop a parapet, and looked out over a city that she did not recognize.

The young woman had arisen at the crack of dawn, as she was used to, and started looking for her exercise gear. It had taken her a few mintues to realize that her wool and nylon clothes had been replaced by linen, leathers, and silk. The tasteful dorms of Claremont Academy had been replaced by heavy wooden bunks in a barracks. Her high-tech bow and arrows had been replaced by a quiver of shots with metal shafts. The whole thing was too unsettling for someone who had been kidnapped and put on a forgery of her world, so she did whatever she always did when she was feeling panicked -- sought height.


Which is why the slim woman was standing on top of a stone tower, tracking the movement of horse-drawn carts and poled barges moving through the city. On the one hand, she should have been happy and more comfortable in this world than in the busy, rushing world she knew of as Freedom City. And yet... last night she had talked with her girlfriend on a cell phone, a magic square of bright glass, for many hours before falling asleep. Now that cellphone was missing, and the only thing she could think was -- What else is different?

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For the first moment after Erin woke, cuddled snugly against Trevor with her nose nuzzling his shoulder blade, she didn't register anything different. They'd done a late patrol last night, one that ended in the very satisfying bust of a gang of burglars in the Theatre District, and the cleanup had gone past 4am. Luckily it was her day off, and school wasn't back in session, so there was no harm in sleeping in. So what had woken her up? She drowsily lifted her head to look at the clock on the nightstand, only to find that it wasn't there. Neither was the nightstand. Neither was the bedroom. The room she found herself in was draped in heavy black tapestries and smelled musty in a way she couldn't quite understand, and instead of bits and pieces of crimefighting gear and electronics, there was a table full of weird beakers and chemicals. Erin shot to a siting position, and was suddenly overcome with a rush of memories. 


Looking at the world through the eyes of a child, watching her father whistle as he mended pots and pans, while her mother hung laundry outside their cottage, Erin's little sister in a sling on her back. Family, a long time ago...


A young girl's eyes now, watching in wide-eyed horror as a band of monsters approached their village, slavering and terrible. The taste of a strange elixir on her tongue, filling her body with strength enough to kill the monsters, but not soon enough...


Wandering a pastoral countryside, sometimes walking, sometimes on a pony or riding in a wagon, killing monsters, saving the innocent, always searching for something else, some greater purpose, till she arrived in a vast city and met someone she hadn't even known she was looking for...


Erin pressed the heels of her hands against her eyes as a lifetime's worth of memories came crashing down on her, causing a disorienting double-vision. Part of her saw this place as home and was satisfied that everything was as it should be, while the majority of her fought the instinctive shock and terror that came from waking up to a world that was terribly wrong. Had she slipped into some alternate dimension? Had she gone back in time? Abruptly she leapt to her feet and took a better look at her sleeping companion. Definitely Trevor, she noted with a surge of relief. No matter what else was going on here, at least she wasn't alone. 


Reaching out, she shook his shoulder, gently, then more firmly. "Wake up!" she hissed, still looking around the room. "Something's really wrong here!" 

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Trevor was upright almost immediately, legs shifting smoothly to raise him into a crouch atop the bed while one hand slid a sizable dagger out from beneath the pillow and into a ready position between a thumb and forefinger, pommel upward to display the crucifix fashioned into the hilt to the room. "What peril, love?" he asked in a steady whisper, eyes narrowed as he scanned the bedchamber and carefully began moving to the edge of the bed toward the workbench. Eyes that were the unassuming brown they'd been when he and Erin had first met, though marred by distinctive dark blots across his lower eyelids, the reminder of some chemical burn that lent his features a menacing quality. His free hand found hers without looking and gave her fingers a brief, reassuring squeeze.

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Erin sucked in a quick breath of surprise when she noticed Trevor's eyes. Objectively she knew that red pupils and black sclerae were much more unsettling than plain brown eyes, but after all these years, they just looked wrong. Wrong, just like the rest of this world. She eased back slightly but didn't pull away from his hand, hoping against hope that the changes were cosmetic. Of course, if that were the case, he wouldn't be saying things like "what peril" and looking at the room like it wasn't even worth commenting about. "The world, the whole world," she told him, looking around. "Or at least, right here. It's all different! Even my memories are different. It's like something is trying to overwrite Freedom City in my head." 


She climbed off the bed and went to the window, pulling back the tapestry to look out. Where yesterday she'd have seen the opposite wing of a stately manor home, now there was something much closer to a stone castle, complete with crenellated tower on top. The garage and much of the backyard was now stables, and even through the wavy glass she could hear the noises of animals outside. "None of this is right. When we went to sleep last night, we were in Freedom City and it was 2014 and you had a garage full of cars, not horses! Can you remember any of it?" she asked, her voice almost pleading. 

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Paige opened one eye, turning to look up at Richard. "Wert thou perhaps expecting someone else, husband?" she asked, her voice a sleepy tease. "Didst thou have the dream about the succubus maiden again? She's naught but a character from the plays, she cannot really hurt you." She closed her eyes again, burying her face in the canvas pillow. "Come back to bed, tis too early for nonsense."




Paige, who'd always hated change. Paige, who had told him once that it was lucky time-travel couldn't actually alter the present. "Can you imagine realizing your whole world is a lie and that you have to destroy it? God, what an awful thought." For a woman who'd grown up with a crappy dad who'd constantly manipulated her, it was an attitude that made a lot of sense. But given her ability to sandblast his mind like a soup cracker, it wasn't something he needed to bring up now. _If I have to sleep on the couch because I rewrote all of reality, that's a risk I'm willing to take._


"..I'm going for a run. I'll see you soon, love." He zipped around fast like buzzing hornets, doing his best to ignore the memories that intruded into his mind like so many unwelcome probation officers. His life as a dashing young rogue in the company of his mother the Queen of Hours. His partnership with the runaway young sorceress Transept Rose and their merry life of crime, the battle with the forces of Hell that had brought them onto the side of good. A circus that combined morality plays (heavy on the "much-repented vice") and acrobatic feats. Kids, born late thanks to some magical help, and the relocation to New Camelot. His boy, the Claremont racer, his little girl, perhaps the most powerful witch in the world.


He found not his costume, but a black and white leotard that a juggler might wear, a leather jacket...thing? Aaaghwhatisthisevencalled, and the Book of Starry Magic (looking about as he remembered) to fit neatly inside the latter. Can'tjustleavethislyingaround He turned and winked in Paige's direction, making out like it was any normal day, and stepped out onto the old parade ground where the circus had made camp. They-


Bullcrap. I am Fast-Forward, and I am the fastest man alive. I'm going to make this right.


And with that, he took off running, zipping up and over the nearest stone parapet as he made his way into the walled city of New Camelot, before he stopped dead when confronted with a blue and gold archer at the top of the wall.


"Hey! Are you a Claremont student?" he demanded.

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Trevor followed Erin off of the bed and onto his feet, lowering the raised dagger as it became clear that the crisis that had woken her was not of the immediate violence variety. Blinking several times, he took a silent moment to rub one brow with the heel of his empty hand before setting the weapon down on his workbench and stepping over to the window.

"Not... as such," he answered her question slowly and carefully, looking out at the grounds and then to the auburn haired woman's face, expression searching but calm. "'Freedom City' has the ring of a child's tale. Your instinct for the preternatural has always proven sound in the past, though, and my heart cannot doubt you." Offering Erin a faint smile, the young man slid tinctures and solutions aside to clear space at the table. "Thus speaks the romantic in me, though the scientist of the enlightenment would, bluntly put, feel more at ease having checked you for fever, milady."

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"I don't have a fever!" Erin protested, even as her hand automatically went to check her own forehead. "I'm fine, it's the world that's wrong, and I know that sounds crazy, but it's true. Something happened to us, and now it's suddenly all medieval here, and you're talking in complete sentences and I have half a set of memories of a person I know I'm not." She paced in front of the window for a moment, then snapped her fingers and pointed at him. "This is like that time when Mark's dad rewrote the world so everyone was all plasticky and happy all the time, remember? Everybody else got caught up in the rewrite, but it didn't take for me because I'm not from Earth Prime, and I got dumped out on the lawn instead. The same thing must be happening here, except it sort of got me, just not all the way. We need to figure out what's going on!" 


Erin hurried to the wardrobe, her new half-memories guiding her hands as she pulled out a tunic and leggings and a sturdy leather weapon belt. "Somebody's got to be behind this, someone must know something. Maybe we could look for Mark?" 

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Jay did not understand what was happening in her head. She could remember the Terminus, the resistance, the Furions and coming to Earth. She could remember meeting Sam and Cerys and Mali, fighting crime and falling in love and planning to go back home to save everyone.

And she remembered a city on a broken coast ruled by demons, a desperate struggle against tyranny and death. Knights in magical silver armor swooping in and saving her at the last moment. Coming to this city, to New Freedom and meeting a thief with demon powers, an assassin who had turned against her trade, and a bare-handed fighter from far Cathay. Befriending, falling for them, learning to fight for the Crown and --

And it was all wrong, all horribly and hair-tearingly wrong. It was like waking up and realizing the face in the mirror was a stranger's. It twisted her up inside and made her sick, made her want to retch off the side of the tower until she had thrown up all the wrong memories. But all she could do was wrap the blue-and-gold cape around herself; it was the wrong material and all the wrong cut, but it at least was something familiar from each set of memories.

She jumped when the man in the leotard suddenly appeared next to her. She didn't recognize him, but at least he was talking about Claremont! "Yes," she said, eying him warily. "I am. But how do you know what Claremont is?"

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Where there was once asphault tranversed almost exclusively by automobiles, now laid a brick road populated by mix of animal-pulled carts, animal riders, numerous pedestrians, and peddlers by the dozen. The people looked at Hronos with fear, as if he was a demon or a malevolent ghost. They didn't scream, nor cause any fuss, but it was obvious that they looked at him warily, their breaths getting cut short. Having come to an abrupt stop, Hronos pondered more about what happened. Obviously, the world's timeline doesn't get overwritten just like that. Whether there was a party responsible for this or not (and more often than not, a party WAS responsible), such a phenomenon would have a number of points of origin, someone, somewhere, or sometime, from whence the change occured. And whether this place was full of chronal energy, he should still be able to discern some noticeable spikes... or at least, he hoped he would. A set of purple-hued glowing eyes shined from within the hollow helmet that his new head was, as the golem searched for any energy readings that looked comparetively out of place. There were a few seconds of awkward discomfort, as the process was both foreign and familiar at once for the former Mechanodynamis, before his attuned senses started feeling natural to him again.

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"Oh, thank God, somebody who speaks English!" Richard didn't like turning to a kid for help, but these big crises meant you had to find allies in unlikely places. "Listen, I'm Fast-Forward, from the TV? Fast-Forward, host of Supercrime!?...no? Okay." He talked fast, circling the parapet as he spoke and taking in the city beneath them as he did so, zipping around almost impossibly fast in the confined space. "You probably go to school with my son Will, he just started at the end of the year. Do you have any idea what happened?" he asked her seriously. "I've traveled in time before, but that's not some kind of freaky London, that's Freedom City, or what's supposed to be Freedom City. When people were dressed like this," he added with a gesture to his outlandish costume, "all this land was just sandy beaches, seagulls, and grumpy Lenape." He drummed his fingers on the stonework, then looked back at Blue Jay. "And dimensional shifts don't shove fake King Arthur memories in our heads. Why are you different?" he asked suddenly. "You a time-traveler?" 



"Greetings, fair golem!" The sky rending in a small fireball _should_ have been a friendly sight for Hronos, who had worked with the Brass Knight many times, but the sight of the bizarrely-changed Daedalus in his greatly altered armor was no pleasure even as he joined him, waving off the crowd who relaxed at the sight of the familiar League of Camelot member. Daedalus looked like a medieval knight, and not just any knight, but one in the kind of showy, elaborate, gold-inlaid armor suitable for court rather than warfare - yet it hummed still with arcane power, warped by whatever change had swept over 'Freedom' City. "Dost thou sense the change in the air as well? Trouble not just with the city, but with the whole world around! Rumor has it that our fair king and queen's arrival has ill portents about it." 

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Mark proved reachable through the usual means, the scrying stone he'd left with Erin and Trevor when he went off to be a diplomat in the court of his lost grandfather - the Djinn-Emperor of the East. "Nay, nothing strange in these realms. My Lady Nina continues to be amenable to my suasions about abandoning her father's court of the Dark Marids, and the ifrit are still, ah, snuffed from our previous joust with them." The wink he gave them was pure Mark, a sign that one thing hadn't changed, even if the silk draperies and stuffed cushions behind him looked like something out of a Victorian seraglio. "Things are still difficult here," he admitted, "with Nina's father ill the courts of marid and djinn threaten to war upon one another, but today at least there are no crises to speak of.There _was_ something from New Camelot that I had meant to speak with the both of you about," he said. "A diplomatic message came at sunrise to be on the lookout for, what was that..." He fumbled around on the table before him, then pulled out a piece of parchment. "'doomsayers, astrologers, and other ne'er-do-wells questioning the nature of Creation, even those who wear the shape of champions' It came straight from the Royal Court itself!" Mark smiled. "I suppose I should trouble myself to actually sending this message on..But I know you two of old, when we fought the King of Hell together even if no one else remembered that day. No one is more true of heart than my fellows of the League of Liberty." 

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"None remember, aye," Trevor muttered largely to himself, brow lowering slightly over his taciturn features as they left Mark to his courtly intrigues. "Warning came before you awoke," he noted, his language becoming more familiarly clipped if still archaic to Erin's ears. "Need not warn against mad ravings save they be truth. Hhn. Not myself, then. Disturbing."

Walking over to a massive wardrobe standing in the far corner of the bedroom, the young man produced a dark silk shirt and dyed leather jerkin, utilitarian fare by the standards of his station. As he dressed, he paused, looking at the male and female outfits hanging side by side. "...he loves you? The me you recall?"

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"I don't watch television," Tona said, eying the speedster warily. He seemed to remember the same Freedom City she did, which was reassuring, but why were they the only two? "I do remember a student named Will who moves really fast. So you're his father?" She wasn't exactly friends with Will Cline, but if his kid was in Claremont than the family had to be okay. In general.

In any case, it's not like she had much choice. "I'm not from Earth," she told him. "I'm from the Terminus. The Freedom League said that might make things act weird sometimes. I guess this is one of those times." She looked over the city again and shivered. Of course, the last time she found herself in a weird Freedom City, a robot version of her was at home, trying to kill her friends. She had to find out what was happening as soon as she could. "You said you've seen this sort of thing happen before?"

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"He does," Erin replied, looking at this altered Trevor with fierce eyes. "You do. Even though everything is wrong here, the one thing that's right is that we're together." She rummaged in the chest of weapons that rested beneath the clothes, tucked a wooden stake and a silver dagger into their holsters on her belt. "That's the reason I'm not secretly scared out of my mind. I know we can fix this." By habit she looked through the weapons for her bat, but also by habit her hand went for the hilt of a silver-bladed sword that gleamed with the same muted light as her Furion-enhanced bat at home. Drawing it from the scabbard, she tested the blade, then slung it across her back with the skill of having done it a thousand times. It felt very strange. 


"Mark said the warning he got came from the Royal Court itself. It sounds like someone there must have suspected that there would be people who didn't get the reality transfusion. Somebody there had to see this thing coming, and they want it to work. We need to find where that message came from, and we need to figure out how to find other people who might not be affected." 

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"My momma took me time-traveling without seatbelts a whole hell of a lot when I was a kid. Ancient Rome, Victorian London, far future, you name it. I've been doing it myself since I was ten. Doctor told me once I absorbed enough chronal radiation to exist outside the time stream, but I'm pretty sure that's just fancy smart guy talk for being faster than the speed of time itself." The unpleasant thought that Paige, and probably Will and Holly, hadn't been fast enough to dodge this shook him out of his fake confidence. He didn't like having to rely on a kid, but he could at least try and act like the grownup in the room. "A couple of years ago somebody dropped a whammy on the whole planet and I woke up in my mother's basement dressed like I was fifteen again. Never did find out what caused that, I spent most of my time dodging jacked-up supers on the West Coast. Wasn't the first time that happened, either. You'd be surprised how often somebody screws around with time, or space, or dimensions." He zipped around at every word, then stopped, his fingers drumming an almost impossibly fast tattoo on the stonework next to them. 

"All right, here's what we'll do. Any hero worth their salt who didn't get tagged by this, they'll be going for Freedom Hall," he refused to call it Camelot Hall, "or maybe Claremont if they're your age. I can speed you up and zip us both down to both places faster than anybody but Rocket and Velocity can follow. We can see if anybody around looks as lost as we are." He could have done it himself and been back in seconds, but he felt bad about ditching the kid up there in the parapet. Just keep an eye out for the...for the _authorities_." he added. "There's a royal visit, and that means bully-boys on the ground keeping an eye out for people causing trouble. The people here don't know this world is bullcrap. Most of them will try and stop us, especially the ones that have it good." 

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Tona tried to follow Fast-Forward's rapid movements, but after a bit gave it up as a bad idea and just kept staring out over the city. She felt a twinge of envy at the idea of zipping all over time -- the things you could do! The people you could meet! -- but quickly reigned it in and focused on the task at hand. She thought about his plan, and eventually shook her head. "Good plan once we find someone," she said, "but a hunter doesn't walk all through the forest. She waits where the prey will be coming. Find some place where everyone will be, and wait there. Watch for people who aren't acting normal." She thought about the situation for a moment.

"... Freedom Hall," she said finally. "Or whatever it's called now. If anyone was unchanged and is looking for answers, they'll go there."

Edited by Raveled
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Hronos had just managed to discern the locations of three temporal anomalies, four, if one included the Mechanodynamis himself. Would they be the ones responsible for the current state of the world? Or perhaps, some of them share similar circumstances with my own, finding themselves in a foreign timeline?... Regardless of which, I will have to investigate them. He thought, as he was greeted by Daedalus. Famed founding member of the Freedom League, in the original timeline, this Daedalus seemed to be playing a different role. Different, yet similar as well. It is a peculiar thing to note. Perhaps everyone in this reality holds many similarities with their lives in the original timeline. Would it be that their constructed lives adhere to some broad guidelines that tie them to their original lives? A violently invasive rearragement of reality would, perhaps, explain such a narrative-oriented restructure of the world, both as a point of reference and as a means of a coping mechanism... Hronos pondered the mechanics behind the change of the world in a few nanoseconds.


"You have my greetings, brave and wise Daedalus. Your fears are not ill-founded, but I am affraid to inform you that there is an even more grave situation at hand. You are aware that the magic I am infused with binds me to time itself. As such, I am able to percieve information not normally available to other beings. It has currently revealed to me that this world has been forcibly altered to its current state, by way of unnatural causes. To be more precise, our memories of our original world have been replaced with memories of this world, as we observe it this moment." he informed the Brass Knight.

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The Brass Knight paused almost imperceptibly. "...yes, my alchemical charts had shown me something similar, yes. Why don't you come with me to Camelot Hall, my friend, so that we can find these anomalies together." Unexpectedly, he put an armored hand directly on Hronos' shoulder, and seemed to be doing his gruff, almost Spartan best to speak to the time-golem as comrade to comrade. "We've been through so much since you came to this realm, my friend. Believe me when I say that  I am your true companion, and want only to help you in your hour of need." As he spoke, he was definitely fiddling with some of the alchemical enchantments on his armor with his free hand, tracing new sigils on the surface of the wrought-bronze he wore in his own defense. 




"Kid, I never walk anywhere," said Fast-Forward. "I can't take you down the wall, so we'd better hit the stairs to this place. Here, take my hand. And hang on!" When she did, suddenly the city around them seemed to pause - birds in the air, smoke wafting from chimneys, voices from down below, all frozen in a moment of time - and then suddenly she and Fast-Forward had blurred into impossibly fast motion, zipping their way along the wall, down past a pair of startled, frozen-in-time guards, through a medieval city cast in the unmistakable image of Freedom. They found themselves in front of Freedom Hall, or what should have been Freedom Hall - instead a stone castle  that looked as modest as Freedom Hall itself did. Proudly emblazoned with the words "CAMELOT HALL" in flowing Gothic letters of gold over the low wooden doors. 


Of course, the League does most of their business in the Celestial Lighthouse these days...dammit! Richard shrugged off the fake memories, then released Blue Jay back into the normal speed world. Camelot Hall was a bustling place, complete with royal flags flying in the cool breeze, buskers and apple-sellers by the busy front gates, and guards who looked on in surprise at the two new arrivals. "Just part of the show!" said Richard winningly to the armored goons who looked like any other cop, just in armor and with swords, automatically falling into patter that was natural on both worlds. "Come see tonight's show at the amazing Cline Family Circus and...well, you won't be disappointed!" 

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"You do not have to lie to me, my friend Daedalus. I understand perfectly your inhibition in believing my words, and do not think any less of you." Hronos calmly confronted his ally the Brass Knight. "Even if these memories are fake, I remember with perfect clarity the battle against the rampaging Dragon of Morgause in which we first met, the siege of New Camelot City from the throes of the Legion of Crime, which was led by the Simian Priest and the Archwizard Stratos, and the ploy of the Labyrinth Cabal to resurrect your son Icarus, in the hopes of using his image against you. Ever since my seal was undone, I have been trully proud to call you my ally and my friend. I cannot ask you to believe me without proof of substance, but what I can do is ask that you grant me the benefit of doubt."


Hronos was overcome with emotions. Even if this was a fleeting illusion, those memories felt real to him, and he recalled each and every second of those as if they happened this instant. Even if they were memories of Hronos the Golem, and not Hronos the Mechanodynamis, right now, he was both entities, and he could feel the emotional weight pull him in two directions. Still, if he wanted to restore the world in its original state, he had to preserve. "I have located four chronal power sources in New Camelot, including my self. I will go and investigate them. You are free to come with me, Daedalus, if you so wish. Thusly, you will be able to keep close watch of me, and ensure that I do not cause any undue harm on anyone. If at that time you are still unconvinced of my words and I have not provided you with reasonable doubts supporting my case, then I will gladly follow you to the exalted Camelot Hall, with no resistance on my part. Would this suggestion be fair to you?" He asked the League of Camelot member.

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"Good," Trevor grunted simply as he slung a bandolier holding glass vials stopped with wax over one shoulder followed by another fitted with small blades and tools so that the pair of them crossed over his chest. "Not the first time we've infiltrated the Court. ...or perhaps it is. Tt." Grimacing very faintly he produced a long, heavy black coat from the wardrobe and slid it on over the bandoliers. A polished black plague doctor's mask followed, lenses crafted from glass stained transparent red fitted above the curving beak, while a dusky silk scarf wrapped about the lower half of his face. A simple, wide-brimmed hat and dark leather riding gloves completed his preparations and he was soon leading the way down to the stables.

A familiar if unusually flesh and blood woman with dark red hair and well defined cheekbones was there to greet them despite the early hour, fitting a feed bag onto one of at least a dozen horses of various breeds and colouring. "Miss Byrd. Saddle Night Charger, please."
"Aye, sirrah!" the muscular stablehand replied with a toothy grin, dashing off and returning momentarily with a saddle under one arm and the reigns of a pure black steed a good head taller than any other in the stable in the opposite hand.

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Tona took Fast-Forward's hand, and tried not to gape as the world slowed to a crawl. A hawk was passing overhead, wheeling for height, and she was able to watch the downbeat of its wings become frozen.... in the time... between seconds.

And then he was tugging at her hand and it was time to go. She stepped off the parapet, then stopped, frowning. "I can't just leave," she said, pulling her hand free. "I have to tell people where I've gone. I'll just be a moment!" She ran down the steps to the barracks, quickly locating a loose piece of paper -- foolscap, part of her brain called it -- and scribbled a a note on it with a piece of charcoal. Cerys, Mali, Sam. The world is wrong. Going to fix it with Will Cline's dad. Remind you about it later.

She left the paper on her bed and returned to Fast-Forward, and together they blazed through the city to where the Freedom League -- the League of Camelot -- had its home. For all of her misgivings, Tona did appreciate the fortified look of the new Hall. "If we get up on top of the Hall there will be defenses," she said. "We should stay outside." The young woman cast about for a perch, but most of the buildings were set well away from the castle walls. Sensible, but in this situation rather annoying. At last she decided on an overbuilt stone-and-timber construction; with her nimble fingers and feet, she flew up the side of the building and was soon perched on its peak. Then it was just a matter of getting comfortable and watching the crowds below.

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"That's Redbird?" Erin asked, her tone half-amazed, half-bemused. "She looks... different." How had that even happened, turning an AI into a living person? This was a weird dimensional... whatever it was. Erin was pretty sure that whatever else happened, Redbird would be much happier to get back into the universe where they all belonged, where she could be a car or a motorcycle or a helicopter again. But first they had to fix the world! Deliberately blanking her mind, Erin let muscle memory take over and swing her up into the saddle behind Trevor as easily as though she were sitting pillion on the Night Cycle. 


"We'd better be careful who we try and talk to," she considered aloud as the horse began to trot out of the yard. "Maybe people who come from other dimensions already have some natural immunity. I can think of, hmm, Blue Jay, I'm pretty sure, and Harrier, they're both immigrants. I'm sure there are others, but even if they are immune, they might not be broadcasting it. With the warnings going out, that's a good way to get arrested and tossed in-" She stopped, a weird expression on her face, then cursed. "There's definitely one more person I know who's not from around here. Jessie's probably freaking right the hell out."


The half-memories provided missing context once again; in this timeline the unfortunate Singularity was her long-lost twin sister, separated from the family in childhood and raised in turn by wild animals and brigands who used her strength and skill for evil. Unable to function in society and half-rehabilitated, she'd been put into a convent to learn more peaceable ways of living and keep her off the streets. It was, Erin supposed, a logical way to twist the story, but it made her weirdly uncomfortable to hear it put that way. 


Erin's fingers flexed against Trevor's ribs as she fought her own indecision. "We can't deal with her now, not when we have to solve this. And I don't see how she could be any help, even with her memories. She'll be okay there, it'll be safe." She didn't seem entirely convinced of the fact, but she was trying. "Anyway, Harrier, I mean, Caradoc, and Blue Jay might know something. We should look for them on the way." 

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Used to working with someone who preferred to remain hidden while attacking from a distance, Fast-Forward kept moving and busking for the crowd, casually falling back on the memories of a family circus of superpowered acrobats and wizards who managed to make vice and sin look like the most exciting thing in the world - at least until their repentance in the last act. Always wanted to storm into Freedom Hall and kick some ass. Guess this isn't the time. With a wince, he stopped dead in the dirty, snow-covered street, cognizant of the fact that the usual person who answered those thoughts wasn't listening - and if she was right now, she would probably turn him into the armored goons who were hammering up posters about BEWARE DOOMSAYERS AND ASTROLOGERS on tavern walls, shop walls, and something in the middle of the small square at the edge of the Camelot Hall complex that looked very much like stocks. Hatehatehatehateitwhensomeonescrewsaroundwithtime...Looking down at his digital watch, he gave them both another ten minutes or so before he'd suggest to Blue Jay that they try some time travel. 


Across the avenue that lay between the shops that served those who dwelt within Camelot Hall and the outer moat of the small fortress complex, the Brass Knight, in the company of Hronos the time-golem, landed and took a few strides towards the gate before suddenly Daedalus drew back an armored fist and punched Hronos in the back of the head! "My friend, I will make peace with thee when I have pulled the demon from thy iron body!" called the Brass Knight as he squared off against Hronos, the crowd of citizenry fleeing in a panic as battle between two of the doughtiest knights in Camelot was on! Fast-Forward dodged his way through the crowd and the stampeding horses, trying to get a sense for what was going on. 

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