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Chrysopoeia Cosmetics [OPEN]

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The website for Chrysopoeia Cosmetics went live as the product began to appear on store shelves throughout Freedom City and sample arrangements arrived on the doorsteps of local beauty bloggers; the always popular Set posted a literally divine smokey eye tutorial which garnered the usual surge in likes and reblogs that came whenever they roped Sekhmet into participating. Adorned with tasteful calligraphy the site was styled after an old-timey apothecary shop and boasted a surprisingly robust backend thanks to a certain technically inclined simian.

 

The core line ranged from foundation with the benefits of a moisturizer to chip-proof nail polish that went on in a single coat to smudge proof, waterproof and somewhat alarmingly fireproof lip colour. Those bold claims were backed up by accompanying videos hosted by a serious young woman in a white lab coat, delivered in much the same way as an academic dissertation even if the volunteers joining her attempted to insert a bit more style and humour. Colours ranged the gamut of skin tones, including those traditionally under serviced. The most popular were quickly placed on backorder with a formal apology posted assuring customers that production was being adjusted in response to demand and thanking them for their patience.

 

More exciting, however were the signature lines! Heat sensitive 'mood colours' shifted from rich imperial purple through the spectrum to a sensational scarlet. The 'nighthawk' assortment shifted between subdued, professional looks to bold club style with the setting of the sun. 'Multifaceted' variants dried into delicate patterns like ice crystals, star fields and chocolatey swirls. The 'inner glow' colours soaked up ambient light to shine with non-toxic and surprisingly tasteful luminescence.

 

As though in acknowledgement of the overwhelming array of choices one page of the site featured pre-selected bundles of sample sized product, highlighting some of the more eye-catching colours. The 'smoke hound' kit included light-devouring blacks paired with softer slate greys while the 'ice queen's kiss' kit encompassed a half dozen different lip colours that reacted to temperature. There were bundles themed around each of the LGBT+ pride flags and appropriately for Freedom City bundles themed around prominent heroes, such as the cheekily named 'Briticana' set of red, white and blues, the 'Earth Mother' assortment of lush greens and the subtly metallic 'Dragonscale' colours that glowed like embers in the right light.

 

The most significant page on the site was a deceptively simple text field with layers of behind-the-scenes security to ensure the utmost discretion. The form invited visitors to request custom orders tailored to their own specific requirements. Foundation suitable for amphibious skin? Available at a week's notice. Unique colours to match a heroic uniform? Easily done. Telepathically activated eyeshadow laced with psionically reactive crystals that wouldn't irritate delicate skin? Packaged with a complimentary exfoliant scrub.

 

After all, the site's copy opined, pairing someone with their ideal product could be truly transformational.

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Agnus was always trying to support up and coming designers if she could, even if her name didn't carry the weight it once did, so she heard about this exciting new makeup site almost as soon as the site went live. So bored on monitor duty she decided to use one of the most powerful AI's in the UK to check the place out. The creativity of the whole thing was pretty amazing and when she saw the Briticana range an idea formed for something special she could commission for her next public appearance, time to wisely use more of the Ministry money.

 

"Vera record this for me and give it a less superhero lair type background." with a flash of light she returned from her superhero guise to her normal identity.

 

"Hi there I'm Agnus Stone." in her normal form her thick London accent was pretty obvious, not that she’d expect that anyone would recognize her

 

"I was wondering if you could do me a lipstick that suits my skin tone until it's exposed to camera flashes when it'd go all Briticana? I'm in Freedom City for the next couple of days so I can pop in if necessary."

 

Once she was happy that the video looked innocuous she had it uploaded to her phone to be sent to the site.

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It was almost the break of dawn when Nicole decided to go forward with her request in Chrysopoeia Cosmetics' website. She would send a catalog of her orders, exhaustive and exacting, the quantities measuring in pints and sometimes quarts, customized to a sufficient degree. There would be no doing this by half and so she would be sending a video to go along with her list, expecting that the company would not shortchange her. Of course, she would know if they did that. Even if some of their products presented in their videos and stock baffled her as to their production, she was more than enough of a competent chemist and alchemist to identify when something was not what it was supposed to be.

 

But those thoughts were for when her products would be delivered, and so she adjusted the lights in her workshop, from the harsh industrial lighting, dimming it into a cooler, mellow yellow. Faiza would never have let her work this late into the night, nevermind the bright lights when everyone was supposed to be sleeping, not without an earful of nagging but that was fine; Nicole worked better without eyes looking over her shoulder.

 

She tied her hair into a simple ponytail and brushed the detritus from her desk. Paper full of rejected makeup concoctions and scrawled, crossed out notes on the margins went into the trash bin. Then finally she was ready.

 

...

 

...

 

Recording.

 

She coughed to clear her throat and produced a sheet of paper, several in fact, and began to recite from memory.

 

"By now you would have the address I sent, so let's not waste time."

 

"First order: Nine units of the psionically driven blush, specifically tuned to glow the breadth of the visible spectrum when it is respectively exposed to the radio frequencies ranging from 89.5 megahertz to 123.0 megahertz. Match the proportions. Second order: A box of 12 pieces of reactive lipstick, sensitive to changes in salt levels in the air and temperature as shown in Graph 1.1, attached with the order sent. The effects desired are seen in Graph 1.2, detailing the amount of perceived thickness and absolute sparkle..."

 

She continued like this for several minutes, stopping only briefly to drink from a bottle of water.

 

"Right, this would be the last order: Two units of foundation, resistant to changes of synthetic metalic-ness in the subject." There was a long pause as she looked straight at the camera, then she began to shuffle her papers awkwardly and it was broken.

 

"I have an idea how much all that I ordered would cost and I'm ready to pay it. I assume bulk order pricing would be utilized? If some products are inadvisable or undoable then I am willing to talk with you to find a viable alternative. And have it sent to Claremont Academy, Freedom City, New York."

 

Another uncomfortable pause. It was weird talking to an inanimate object for this long though she was no stranger with long conversations with herself. But the slight awkwardness was for a good cause; they were to be analyzed in her free time and hopefully she would find some insight into chemical reactions and solutions. And she knew her order was large, but it was so some portion could be presented as gifts. After all, she'd taken pains to make the products as aesthetically pleasing as they were complex. It wouldn't do to waste her effort.

 

She nodded stiffly. "Thank you. And out."

 

 

Edited by Zeitgeist Blue

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The voice mails are not human speech - they are baying like a dog and croaking like a frog, dark shades of expression permeating every booming bass syllable, the inhuman song of madness that will one day mean the end of the world! 

 

"Hello! My friend needs things for her face! And her body. Don't tell her I told you. My name is Aquaria Innsmouth, and I have thirty dollars - I can spend more if I need to but this is all I have. I don't know what works the best for females here. I know how to make myself pretty but I do not know how to make my friend pretty - and I know she wants to be even if she does not say it, or she would not work to do it. Which one is your best thing for a female with pink skin? Hello? Is someone there?

 

(disconnected) 

 

"Hello, are you a machine? I know what machines are. I don't call people on the telephone much. Yes, my female friend needs things for her face and her body - the eye paint, and the lipstick, and the things with smells. She doesn't smell of things except soap - and I still think she needs to smell like things if she wants to know people. Or maybe a male! She says she doesn't want one and that's okay, but I think she'd be happier if more males were smelling her. Are there plants with flowers? I have a lot of those and people say they like those."

 

(disconnected) 

 

"She has pink skin, brown eyes, and gold hair. She is about as tall as most females like her are. Her eyes are normal-sized and so is her mouth, and she has all the normal fingers and things. Her hair is short but she might grow it longer if it were different colors. She didn't say she wouldn't when I asked her, anyway. I think she would look good with green hair - or if she cut it _all_ off! Do you have anything for painting skin like that? I think people might like that. Tell me when you call me!

 

 

 

 

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